Since the beginning of the Ringside Politics TV and radio shows, we have enjoyed an annual Thanksgiving tradition of awarding our “Turkey of the Year” to recognize individuals who distinguished themselves in a particularly foolish way. It seems appropriate since turkeys are commonly regarded as one of the most dim-witted animals on the planet.
The winners are selected by our viewers and listeners and each year it is a robust competition with many deserving celebrities and politicians. Previous winners have included both Democrats and Republicans, so it is truly a bi-partisan award. Here is a partial listing of some of our past top turkeys: filmmaker Michael Moore, former House Speakers John Boehner and Nancy Pelosi, former President Barack Obama and former New Orleans Mayors Mitch Landrieu and, current federal inmate, Ray Nagin.
In 2018, former Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) was the clear choice for Turkey of the Year. Ryan is an establishment Republican who was a very weak House Speaker. His major accomplishment was the passage of the tax cut bill. He failed to deliver on an array of important issues such as border security and entitlement reform. He did not pursue an aggressive or conservative agenda. In fact, his weak leadership was one of the major reasons that the Republicans lost control of the House of Representatives in the 2018 midterm elections. This led to the impeachment nightmare and the constant harassment of President Donald Trump, which probably delighted Ryan who take advantage of every opportunity to criticize the President.
This year, our viewers and listeners nominated several dozen individuals and groups, all with outstanding credentials to become our Ringside Politics Turkey of the Year. Nevertheless, the clear winner with the most votes and the best choice for our 2019 award is House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA).
Schiff has been suffering from a horrible case of “Trump Derangement Syndrome” for years. Ever since the President’s election, Schiff has been obsessed with his impeachment. He was so driven to destroy the President that he allowed some Russian comedians to prank him on a phone call promising to provide pictures of “naked Trump.”
After the President released the transcript of his call with his Ukrainian counterpart, Schiff realized that the details were too benign, so he fabricated the contents of the call in a “parody” speech to the American people from his seat as Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee.
For weeks, he conducted secret impeachment hearings and interviewed witnesses in the basement of the U.S. Capitol. It was so biased and unfair that Republicans stormed into the hearings to protest the proceedings.
Eventually, the public phase of the hearings was announced, and all the news media eagerly anticipated the “Schiff Show.” In fact, all the major broadcast and cable news networks televised the hearings. Instead of producing bombshell testimony implicating the President in a crime, Schiff presented to the American people a collection of witnesses who relied on hearsay and did not ever directly talk to the President. Some of the witnesses had never met the President.
The result of the process is that millions of Americans were turned off by the entire stunt. Despite coverage on all the broadcast and cable news networks, only 13.1 million people watched the first day of the hearings. This is a sharp decline from the audience of over 20 million Americans who watched the Judge Brett Kavanaugh hearings or the 19 million Americans who watched the testimony of former FBI Director James Comey.
It seems the American people realize there are major problems with the impeachment process. The inquiry was approved by the House of Representatives without a single vote from a Republican member, while two Democrats voted with the Republicans against launching the inquiry.
Schiff has devoted all his committee’s attention to this witch hunt and failed miserably. After two weeks of public hearings on the impeachment of President Trump, the result is that more people are sympathetic of President Trump and fewer people want to impeach him.
The American people are becoming fatigued with this unfair partisan process. According to a recent poll by Emerson College, support for impeachment has fallen from 48% to only 43% in the last month, while opposition has increased from 44% to 45%. The Emerson College poll also showed that the President’s approval rating has increased from 43% to 48% in the last month.
While Schiff and his colleagues are focused on impeachment, the American people want Congress to address other issues. In a recent piece published in Vanity Fair, Ken Stern examined poll results of independent voters who ranked impeachment last among 11 issues. These independent voters were primarily concerned with fiscal health, the budget deficit, infrastructure among other longstanding concerns. Instead of dealing with these issues, Schiff and other House Democrats are trying to destroy President Trump.
Eventually, Schiff’s antics may cause a backlash against House Democrats, especially for those 31 members who represent districts won by Trump in the 2016 election.
Our country will soon know the outcome of impeachment and how it will impact the 2020 election. In the meantime, we know Congressman Adam Schiff is helping the very person he wants to destroy, President Trump. With such a misguided and failed mission, Schiff is a perfect choice for our 2019 Ringside Politics Turkey of the Year.
Ever since he burst upon the political scene, the political establishment has been targeting Donald Trump. First, they attempted to deny him the nomination, then they worked overtime to deliver the election to Hillary Clinton.
A phony dossier on Trump was prepared by Christopher Steele, a former British spy, using Russian sources. It was funded by the Clinton campaign and used to obtain approval for FISA warrants targeting Carter Page, a volunteer Trump campaign foreign policy adviser.
This sophisticated spying operation investigating “Russia collusion” failed to defeat Donald Trump and he still won the presidency against all odds. Thereafter, there was an effort to thwart his transition team as the spying operation continued into the start of his administration.
Donald Trump was framed by opponents both within and outside of his administration. After he fired FBI Director James Comey, a lying Deep State political operative, President Trump had to withstand a “witch hunt” led by a conflicted and biased Special Counsel Robert Mueller. When the Mueller report was completed, it was determined there was no “Russian collusion” and obstruction of justice could not be proved. Thus, President Trump was innocent because he certainly was not proven guilty.
It took two years and $40 million and a full-scale investigation from Mueller’s team of attorneys, filled with Democratic Party donors and supporters of Hillary Clinton, to determine that President Trump was not guilty of any crimes.
After the failed Special Counsel report was published and testimony of Mueller was a disaster for the Democrats, Trump’s enemies began searching for their next method of attack, all to destroy Donald Trump.
They have tried to investigate his family members, his businesses, his non-profit foundation, his tax returns and his supposed relationship with a porn star and a Playboy centerfold. None of the probes succeeded and the President continued to score approval ratings over 50%, according to the nation’s most reputable pollster, Scott Rasmussen.
After searching through everything related to Donald Trump and launching six separate House investigations, Democrats believe they have struck gold with the intelligence community whistle-blower complaint about the President’s phone call with his Ukrainian counterpart. Never mind that the whistleblower never heard the call or even read the transcript. The complaint was filed even though the Ukrainian Foreign Minister claimed the call was fine and no aid was withheld from the country.
The demands grew until the President released the transcript of the call on Wednesday. It showed the President asking about a prosecutor who was relieved of his duties after investigating the activities of Burisma, a Ukrainian oil company, that paid Hunter Biden, the former Vice President’s son, $50,000 per month.
In the call, the President said, “The other thing, there’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great. Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it … It sounds horrible to me.”
Not only does it sound “horrible” to the President, but to many Americans as well. Why was Hunter Biden cashing in on a relationship with Ukraine? He had no expertise in the oil business, and he had no specialized knowledge of Ukraine. His main qualification was that his father was Vice President of the United States. Imagine the liberal media uproar if one of Donald Trump’s sons had signed a similarly lucrative deal with a foreign oil company.
During his tenure as the Obama administration point person on Ukraine, former Vice President Joe Biden did demand that prosecutor Victor Shokin be relieved of his duties right before he was about to interview Hunter Biden. In a 2018 speech for the publication Foreign Affairs, Joe Biden boasted that he pressured the government to fire the prosecutor. He said, “I’m telling you; you’re not getting the billion dollars. I said, you’re not getting the billion. I’m going to be leaving here in, I think it was about six hours. I looked at them and said: I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money. Well, son of a b-tch (laughter). He got fired and they put in place someone who was solid at the time.”
For Joe Biden, someone “solid” was a prosecutor who would not investigate his son. Once again, Trump is investigated for potentially illegal activity being committed by his Democratic Party opponents. Only Hillary Clinton colluded with Russians, yet Trump was investigated. Only Joe Biden improperly pressured Ukraine, yet President Trump will probably be impeached. The effort is being led Democrats in the House of Representatives who are obsessed with destroying President Trump and could not care less about serving their constituents.
No wonder so many Americans have lost faith in our political and judicial systems. Everything is upside down and the one who is continually mistreated and unfairly investigated, President Donald Trump, is the person trying to “drain the swamp.” Unfortunately, the corrupt denizens of the swamp still wield incredible power and they want to keep it. Get ready America, another political battle royal is about to begin.
During the eight years Barack Obama served as President of the United States, the Democratic Party was united. He was the coalescing force that held the party together. By bringing in Hillary Clinton as his Secretary of State at the start of his administration, Obama healed the wounds from the bruising 2008 presidential race. During his re-election campaign of 2012, Obama was not challenged for the Democratic presidential nomination and he won another term as President.
The Democratic Party unity started falling apart during the 2016 presidential race. The party was split between the progressive supporters of socialist U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders and the more traditional Democrats who backed Hillary Clinton. The split intensified after it was revealed that CNN political analyst Donna Brazile gave Clinton questions in advance of a debate. It was also discovered that Clinton’s campaign basically controlled the Democratic National Committee’s fundraising operation and had a lock on super delegates prior to her securing the party’s nomination.
Basically, Sanders never had a chance to win the party’s nomination in 2016. While many of the Senator’s followers eventually supported Clinton in the general election, a sizeable number either flipped to Trump, voted for the Green Party candidate Jill Stein or boycotted the election altogether and did not vote. It was certainly a contributing factor in Donald Trump winning the presidential election and shocking the political world by securing 306 electoral votes in the biggest upset in U.S. history.
As a new presidential election has begun, the Democrats are splintered among almost two dozen candidates. The members of the more traditional wing of the party are backing former Vice President Joe Biden, while the progressives are either supporting Sanders again, U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) or one of the other left-wing candidates.
While Biden was the initial favorite in the early polls, his lead has been dramatically reduced since a poor debate performance. He has also been hurt by a string of gaffes that have exposed his flaws as a candidate once again. Biden has never been a very good presidential candidate and suffered overwhelming losses in his previous races in 1988 and 2008.
To blunt the criticism and stop the loss of support, Biden is working tirelessly to switch his positions on an array of issues to satisfy the angry progressives who don’t trust him or any old guard Democrat. For example, Biden withdrew his four-decade support of the Hyde amendment, which prevents federal dollars being spent on abortions. Biden changed his position after being condemned by Hollywood stars like Alyssa Milano and other progressives.
The Democratic Party split is apparent on many levels. New progressives are not only more liberal than Biden, Clinton and others among the elite of the Democratic Party, but this new movement also includes more women, more minorities and are younger.
The multi-faceted rupture is also quite apparent among Democrats in Congress. Relations are horrible between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and the four progressive “women of color” who were elected in 2018: Congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Rashida Talib (D-MI), and Ayanna Presley (D-MA).
These progressive women are not very supportive of Pelosi because they feel she has been too moderate and has been targeting them for unfair criticism. Ocasio-Cortez also questioned whether the Speaker assigned her to active committees and sub-committees to keep her “busy.”
This conflict reached a boiling point over disagreements related to a bipartisan border spending bill. The group of four, which Ocasio-Cortez calls her “squad” voted against the bill. Pelosi said that despite “their public whatever and their Twitter world” they only mustered four votes in opposition to the bill. According to Pelosi, this “squad” is only “four people” without much support in Congress, although they have a large social media following.
This insult led Ocasio-Cortez to label Pelosi a virtual racist. In an interview with The Washington Post, she complained that Pelosi’s criticism was “just outright disrespectful…the explicit singling out of newly elected women of color.”
The division will surely continue because Pelosi represents the type of Democratic Party Ocasio-Cortez and her “squad” are trying to destroy. It is the same schism that is apparent in the presidential race.
If Biden wins the nomination, with Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) as the top Democrats in Congress, the progressives will be completely shut out of the power positions in the party once again. At that point, there is real potential for the party to split apart. The progressive wing does not want to be appeased; they want control of the Democratic Party.
This Democratic Party infighting is great news for President Donald Trump. The longer it continues, the better his chances will be to win a convincing re-election victory in 2020.
While President Donald Trump is producing tremendous results for the United States economy, some left-wing analysts expect him to actually lose the 2020 election. According to polls by liberal media outlets CNN and Morning Consult/Politico, former Vice President Joe Biden is comfortably ahead of the President in a hypothetical 2020 presidential match-up.
While other pollsters show the President doing better in terms of his approval rating and getting credit for the strong economy, it seems his re-election bid in 2020 will be much closer than it otherwise should be. In reality, with an economy this strong, President Trump should be on the path for a landslide re-election.
Unfortunately, in our country today, the Democratic Party has some powerful allies who boost the political standing of their horrific candidates. The only reason the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee may even have a chance in the 2020 election is due to the tireless work of these powerful supporters.
Obviously, the mainstream news media has consistently been promoting the Democratic Party for decades. This includes the three major broadcast networks, ABC, CBS and NBC, their cable news partners, CNN and MSNBC, and a bevy of powerful newspapers led by such as The New York Times and The Washington Post, as well as news services such as Reuters and The Associated Press.
They are joined by the “Deep State” bureaucrats who are in powerful positions throughout our government and the ultra-progressive culture warriors that control Hollywood and our entertainment industry.
Despite the incredible influence of these powerful Democratic Party allies, they pale in comparison to the new “Masters of the Universe” who control several huge social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook. This increasingly important ally for Democrats is getting ready to exert tremendous influence in the 2020 election. It can be argued that the left-wing bias of social media helped the Democrats win control of the House of Representatives in the 2018 election. The “blue wave” in the recently concluded mid-terms is a mere appetizer for what the social media giants are preparing for the 2020 presidential election.
Their most important tool is censorship and they utilize that weapon on a regular basis. Every day, social media platforms ban conservative activists and media figures from their sites. This week, Alex Jones, controversial talk show host and commentator, was banned by Facebook. This follows his removal from other platforms such as YouTube and Twitter. Along with Jones, Facebook banned conservative commentators Paul Joseph Watson, Laura Loomer and others in an all-out attack on “far-right” and “fringe” personalities. Facebook even deemed the popular videos of conservative personalities Diamond and Silk as “unsafe to the community.”
While some of the opinions espoused by these commentators may be controversial, conspiratorial or completely inaccurate, they should be protected by the free speech rights enshrined in the First Amendment. The fact that these protections are eroding in our society is downright frightening. An Orwellian suppression of free speech is not only a disservice to the American people, it also helps promote the prevailing liberal ideology that has not been banned by either social media or their partners in the mainstream news media.
The social media agenda is apparent to any objective observer. They will be working overtime to assist the Democratic Party between now and the election next November. The examples of such assistance are plentiful. For the past week, Hollywood conservative James Woods, a rare breed indeed, has been banned by Twitter. In response, President Trump tweeted an important question, “How can it be possible that James Woods (and many others), a strong but responsible Conservative voice, is banned from Twitter?”
Sadly, it is possible because these social media outlets do not care about fairness or freedom of speech. They only care about power and promoting their left-wing ideology. To win the 2020 election, it will be essential for these social media titans to continue to silence those voices who may be promoting President Trump or providing an alternative narrative to the liberal propaganda being promulgated by the allies of the Democratic Party.
The assault on conservative values is pervasive and dangerous. It not only includes the First Amendment, but the Second Amendment as well. On Saturday, Donald Trump, Jr. raised concerns about Google’s rejection of an advertising request by a pro-hunting group, the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. Trump, Jr. tweeted that Google was “kowtowing to left-wingers & blacklisting hunters from advertising on their platform. But we’re really supposed to believe that Big Tech isn’t biased?”
Clearly, “Big Tech” is biased against the right to bear arms and the free speech rights of a hunting group with a long tradition and a large following in Montana. Fortunately, some members of Congress are fighting back. On Friday, U.S. Senator Steve Daines (R-MT) and U.S. Representative Greg Gianforte (R-MT) sent a letter to Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai insisting on a reversal of the advertising ban. It states, “We, therefore, demand you reverse these prohibitions and request that Google reexamine their policy interpretations on prohibiting hunting promotions. We also request a meeting to discuss the importance of Montana’s and the United States’ hunting heritage.”
Hopefully, these lawmakers will be able to convince Google to reverse their policy; however, it is just one battle in a continuing war with the social media giants. It is time for hundreds of members of Congress and political leaders across the country to challenge the daily assaults on the rights established for Americans in our all-important first two constitutional amendments.
If not, more our precious constitutional rights will be forfeited until the day arrives when those who strongly believe in these amendments may be imprisoned for espousing “dangerous” ideas. Liberty loving Americans must begin to immediately engage in this monumental struggle for it is about much more than the 2020 election, it is actually a fight for the future survival of our free nation.
It looks like another heavyweight Democratic presidential contender is on the verge of entering the race. Former Vice President Joe Biden is moving closer to making an official announcement that he will be a candidate in 2020.
If he runs, Biden will start at the top of the polls. The latest Emerson national poll has Biden and U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont tied at 26%, leading the large field of candidates.
The 70+ year old frontrunners are followed by U.S. Senator Kamala Harris of California with 12% support and former Texas Congressman Beto O’Rourke with 11% in the poll of Democratic primary voters.
In recent weeks, Sanders, O’Rourke and Harris have climbed in national support, while Biden has been stagnant. Once thought to be a strong favorite in the race, Biden is now the object of ridicule. At Thursday’s Bermuda Executive Forum in New York City, billionaire businessman Michael Bloomberg mocked Biden. He said, “Joe Biden went out and apologized for being male, over 50, white. He apologized for the one piece of legislation which is actually a pretty good anti-crime bill, which if the liberals ever read it, most of the things they like is in that bill. They should have loved that. But they didn’t even bother to read it. You are anti-crime, you must be anti-populist.”
As Biden inches closer to an announcement, other curious rumors have been floated. Since he is 76 years-old, it was reported through anonymous sources that Biden was considering a pledge to serve only one term as President. It was also leaked that Biden had promised the position of his vice-presidential running mate to former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams, an African American female, who is three decades younger. This trial balloon was later dismissed as a “false” rumor by one of his aides.
It is curious that so many Democratic Party insiders want Biden to run for President again. He has never done well in this type of campaign. His presidential races in 1988 and 2008 were miserable failures. Of course, he was elected Vice President, but Barack Obama would have won with anyone on the ticket. He chose Biden because it was a “safe” choice, a rather boring, older, white liberal with no chance of overshadowing his boss.
As Vice President, Biden was relatively non-controversial, but he did make a number of embarrassing gaffes, which added to his reputation as someone who regularly makes cringe worthy comments. Running against Biden will be very easy as his opponents will be able to highlight his long history of bloopers.
He also has a history of being very touchy with women and young girls at public events. This inappropriate behavior might become a major issue in this #MeToo generation.
Biden relishes his role as a “tough guy” and he has threatened to punch out President Trump on numerous occasions. In reality, he is a Washington D.C. insider who has led an extremely privileged life as a United States Senator. He served for six terms, starting in the United States Senate at the young age of 29.
Biden cannot relate to blue collar Americans who have had to work tirelessly to provide for their families. As a United States Senator, Biden has never had to work much at all. It is one of the easiest and cushiest jobs in the world. He has spent his working life as a member of the “World’s Most Exclusive Club,” not exactly great experience for a candidate trying to win Rust Belt states in 2020.
As Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, he played a major role in harassing good Republican Supreme Court nominees like Justice Clarence Thomas. When the Democratic Party needed an attack dog, Joe Biden was always willing to fulfill the role. For example, in the Vice-Presidential debate in 2012, Biden delivered an unhinged performance, barely giving his GOP opponent, former Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, a chance to respond.
In this year of progressive and socialist Democrats, Biden will find it difficult to connect with the angry mob of liberals who will be voting in the upcoming primaries. Despite his recent comment that he has the “most progressive record of anybody running” Biden has a typical liberal Democrat background.
Unlike the socialists who dominate the Democratic Party today, Biden has never advocated a 90% upper tax rate, eliminating private health insurance, infanticide, allowing 16-year-old children the right to vote, the $93 trillion Green New Deal, etc.
He is an old school politician which might not reflect where the Democratic Party is today. Biden will certainly garner media attention and raise funds, but he will find it difficult to excite millennial and progressive voters, the base of the new radicalized Democratic Party.
In his address to the nation, President Trump once again offered an olive branch to the Democrats. In exchange for $5.7 billion in funding for a border wall, he gave his support for a three-year extension of protection for the 700,000 immigrants who arrived in the country as children. This group was protected from deportation by former President Obama in his Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
His previous offers to negotiate and compromise have been rejected by Democrats, who are being held captive by their far-left wing, which supports open borders. The President may soon come to the realization that the only way to end the government shutdown is to give up on a deal with the Democrats and declare a national emergency and start building the wall on his own.
With the 2020 presidential campaign already in motion, President Trump recognizes the importance of this issue to his chances of winning another term. It has been his most significant campaign pledge since the very beginning. In his announcement speech, Trump focused on the problem of illegal immigration. He famously said, “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best… They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with [them]. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.” These remarks led to a swift backlash as he was universally denounced by the news media, Democratic and Republican Party leaders, Macy’s, Univision, NBC and other corporate giants.
Despite the uproar, Trump did not apologize, and this launched his campaign as a candidate who was not only fighting against political correctness, but also one who understood the problems of open borders. For decades, politicians of both parties had promised action in curtailing illegal immigration; however, they never delivered anything but broken promises.
In 1986, President Ronald Reagan signed a bill that granted amnesty to approximately 3 million illegal aliens. In exchange for supporting this measure, Reagan was promised that the bill’s “keystone” was a provision that would eliminate “job opportunities which draw illegal aliens here.” The bill created fines up to $10,000 per case for employers who “knowingly” hired illegal aliens.
Unfortunately, Reagan was sold a bill of goods as amnesty was awarded, but the crackdown on employers never materialized. Thus, the country’s illegal immigration population has grown from 3 million in 1986 to at least 22 million today, according to a September 2018 study released by Yale University and MIT.
President Trump realizes that the open border situation has become a full-blown crisis, while Democrats and their partners in the news media claim it is only “manufactured.” One group that truly recognizes the problem of illegal immigration and knows it is not “manufactured” is working class Americans, who have been negatively impacted for decades. These are the people who have lost their jobs or seen their wages reduced. While the business elites from Wall Street pushed unchecked expansion of illegal immigration and open borders, tax paying Americans on Main Street wanted our government to address a growing problem.
After decades of meaningless rhetoric, Donald Trump entered the political arena and effectively championed the issue of border security and a wall to win the presidency and shock the so-called experts. It is an issue tied to Donald Trump’s success, but, if he does not deliver on his promise, it will be the anchor that will bring down his presidency and destroy his chances for re-election. His large and loyal base of supporters is demanding that the President stand firm on his pledge to build a border wall despite the government shutdown.
A recent ABC News poll revealed that 82% of Americans have not been personally impacted by the government shutdown, so the media focus on the horrible consequences of the President’s position is not ringing true. Predictably, weak Republicans in Congress are starting to cave and demand the President reopen the government and deal with the border wall at a later time. This advice is political suicide for President Trump for he will never recover from breaking his campaign promise. If anyone doubts this outcome, just look at the 1992 presidential campaign when George H.W. Bush lost his re-election bid. A major reason for the defeat was that he reneged on his oft-repeated pledge, “Read my lips, no new taxes!”
A more important reason to stand firm on the wall today is that it will never be built if Trump relents to the pressure. Without a border wall, illegal immigrants will continue to stream into the country and Democrats will benefit as Republican states such as Texas will turn into liberal strongholds. This is exactly what happened in California and it is in the process of happening in Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico. If this Democrat Party aspiration is ever realized, Republicans will have no chance of winning the presidency again and the dreams of a border wall will never be fulfilled.
The stakes in this battle are huge for the future of the Trump presidency, the Republican Party, and especially the country. For all of these reasons, the President needs to stand firm, withstand the pressure and, finally, build the wall, one way or another.
Throughout our 20 years of Ringside Politics TV and radio programs, we have established an annual contest of awarding our “Turkey of the Year.” This Thanksgiving tradition was started to recognize those individuals who distinguished themselves in a particularly idiotic way. It seems appropriate since turkeys are commonly regarded as one of the dumbest animals on the planet.
Every year, the competition is fierce for there are many deserving celebrities and politicians. Previous winners have included filmmaker Michael Moore, former House Speakers John Boehner and Nancy Pelosi, former President Barack Obama and former New Orleans Mayor, current federal inmate, Ray Nagin.
We have recognized both Republicans and Democrats, men and women. Last year, then Mayor of New Orleans Mitch Landrieu was the consensus choice by placing his selfish political aspirations over the well-being of his city. He removed historic monuments without a vote of the people and used the issue to garner national publicity, while ignoring long standing problems such as violent crime, poor drainage and horrific street conditions.
This year, our radio listeners nominated several dozen individuals and groups, all with outstanding credentials to become our Ringside Politics Turkey of the Year. Nevertheless, the clear winner with the most votes and the best choice for our 2018 award is House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI).
Ryan is an establishment Republican who has been a very weak House Speaker. He has not pursued an aggressive congressional agenda and has none of the leadership qualities of a successful House Speaker, such as Newt Gingrich, who campaigned on the ambitious Contract with America. Gingrich help deliver capital gains tax cuts, welfare reform and produced the first budget surplus in decades. In the mid-term election, Ryan barely campaigned and strongly advocated few, if any real issues.
What really motivates Ryan is the opportunity to criticize Donald Trump. Ever since Trump burst upon the political scene, Ryan has relished occasions to appear before the media and make critical comments. After Trump’s 2005 “locker room” remarks to Access Hollywood host Billy Bush were improperly released to the public, Ryan told fellow Republicans that he would no longer “defend Trump.” Thereafter, he cancelled a joint appearance with Trump, claiming he was “sickened” by the comments. Instead of standing by his party’s presidential candidate and condemning the media for releasing a tape that was secretly recorded, this so-called GOP leader abandoned his party’s presidential nominee.
Of course, President Trump achieved victory without any help from Ryan. In fact, he has been working to “Make America Great Again” without much assistance from the top congressional leader of the Republican Party. Ryan has not championed many of the major issues on the President’s agenda such as the funding of a border wall, even though it was a prime reason why Republicans won the White House and maintained control of Congress in the 2016 election.
It was no surprise when Ryan deserted his party and his colleagues by announcing his retirement from Congress several months before the end of his term. An honorable man would have immediately resigned, allowing his party an opportunity to select another House Speaker before the mid-term election. Instead, Ryan remained in place, offering no leadership and withholding funding from candidates who were involved in close races. The result was a bloodbath for the House Republicans as Democrats took back control of the House and won close to 40 new seats.
Ryan’s leadership was pathetic and his fundraising for GOP candidates was anemic. While finding little time to show support for President Trump and his agenda, Ryan never missed chances to belittle his Commander-in-Chief in the media. For example, in the aftermath of the President’s comments at the news conference following the Helsinki summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Ryan eagerly offered his criticism. He was upset that Trump was reluctant to accept the findings of U.S. intelligence services, the same groups which had surveilled a member of his campaign team during and after the 2016 presidential election.
As the caravan of migrants headed toward the U.S. border, the President expressed his support to use executive action to eliminate birthright citizenship for children of illegal aliens. Ryan criticized the idea and said it was akin to what Barack Obama did as President. In response, President Trump fumed that “Paul Ryan should be focusing on holding the Majority rather than giving his opinions on Birthright Citizenship, something he knows nothing about!”
Sadly, Ryan did not focus on holding the House in this mid-term election, so now the next Speaker will be liberal Democrat Nancy Pelosi. The blame for this debacle does not rest with President Trump, who won major victories for several Republican U.S. Senate candidates, but directly with Paul Ryan who leaves his post with few victories. He also leaves his Republican Party in the minority in the House and in a severely weakened position. Clearly, Paul Ryan is the right choice for our 2018 Ringside Politics Turkey of the Year.
By True Tamplin
Millennials. Can’t live with ‘em, can’t live without ‘em.
We’ve all seen how it goes. Millennials on the one hand are so passionate that they’re willing to sleep 14 to a hotel room floor just to follow a political movement but leave after 3 months of “unfulfillment” in their day job.
These poor employers hear their concern for “no bean bags in the office” and “not enough impact.” Well, after plenty of bean bags to go around and as much “impact” as you can stuff into a project manager assistant for AT&T job, these young guys and gals still aren’t happy.
So, what is the solution? (And the birds cry ‘fowl’!)
My name is True Tamplin, and I am a millennial. My story is that I covered the local paper several times, got a full ride scholarship for soccer, maintained a 4.0 GPA Suma Cum Laude, run a successful Analytics and SEO company, and became a #1 Amazon Bestselling Author and public speaker all by the age of 22.
My father, Ken Tamplin, was offered to be the lead singer Journey when Steve Perry exited in 2007. It was a 5-year touring contract – I was 13 and my sister was 15 – and boy, did we need the money badly (not to mention, the deep desire of an artist for fame and recognition). Long story short, he counted the cost, and chose to be a dad instead of a rockstar.
I will never forget that. In fact, I’m utterly convinced that none of my early successes would have come had he left me during those 5 crucially developmental years.
That became the premise of my book and public speaking gigs. This also led me on a journey to figure out why others my age are (or aren’t) finding success themselves.
Delayed Gratification and the Marshmallow Test
Of the two core issues, I’d argue Millennials’ inability to pursue things with delayed gratification is the main issue.
Delayed gratification is the longstanding ability to work hard, foregoing immediate results, with the belief that results will one day be seen (which are hopefully greater results than had you gone for instant gratification).
This is actually one of the things that make us human. No other animal in the animal kingdom gets an education, knowing that it will one day pay its dividends. This is true of dieting, building SEO backlinks, laying a foundation of a building, and the like.
So what is the marshmallow test?
The marshmallow test is when you offer a kid a marshmallow. Once in his/her hand, you tell them “If you wait one hour, I will give you TWO marshmallows.”
Now that’s a dilemma.
Studies have shown that kids willing to forego marshmallow consumption for an hour in exchange for a second marshmallow are bound to go farther in life.
Millennials are currently the worst generation at this test, and if you are a millennial, increasing you’re desire for delayed gratification is the best piece of advice I have for you.
1 Issue, 2 Perspectives – Advice for the Employer and Millennial
The second core issue is day-jobs not offering the amount of impact that millennials want to feel like they are having.
To the employers – during our interview, Jeff Crouere asked what employers can do with this generation. Involve them more in the overarching narrative of the business, emphasizing the importance that their role plays. Let them have a say in where budget is allocated. Loop them in on important meetings. Explain the business at large (including the need that the business fulfills). Stress the importance that their role plays in the overall scheme of things. Offer plenty of room for growth, both monetarily and experientially.
It also helps to not downplay how hard or boring work can be at times. Instead of trying to make cold-calling not seem so bad, emphasize how bad it is, but also how good it is for them to learn. Instead of, “Oh come on, I did that for 10 years,” instead explain “Those were the days I grew more than I ever have.” Put millennials up to the challenge. If you get us excited, we’ll happily work through the night.
To fellow millennials – if something doesn’t excite you, you still have the option to get excited about the results. Results generally fall into two categories: what it will do for your personal growth, and what it will do for you monetarily.
Guys – have you ever seen the girl of your dreams step into some guy’s sports car? If you’re not motivated enough to grind at selling software, you don’t deserve the sports car. Nor the girl.
At the end of the day, it boils down to effort (which is the only thing we can control). If you stuck me in a call center, I would WILL my way to the top of that call center. You could bet your [insert explicative] that I would, and you can too.
If you truly, deeply feel like there is no room for growth in your company, then and only then should you switch.
I also say, you should front-load your life with experience and learning-heavy jobs.
If you’re a gamer at all, you might be familiar with games where you level up skills. The earlier you level up the skills that make you more gold/money, the longer those skills pay dividends for. The same is true for life, and that’s why I say go for jobs that level you up early in life.
I could ramble on about life hacks, but I promise you that it will not help as much as:
- Learning to become fascinated with something because the results fascinate you
- Increasing your drive, willing up your Willer, efforting up your Efforter, igniting passion for life into anything you find your hand at – effort is the #1 problem and the #1 solution
- Front-load your life with experience and learning-heavy jobs. Start collecting those growth dividends earlier rather than later (imagine getting a degree at age 80!)
- Master delayed gratification. Forego quick results for big results later (which largely means invest in yourself while you’re young!)
For the 30-day mentorship program that will change your life, visit my site:
During the ascendancy of Donald Trump to the top of the Republican Party and the presidency, the media has devoted plenty of attention to the in-fighting in the GOP. In the 2016 presidential race, Trump overthrew the entrenched party establishment by defeating 16 Republican challengers and winning the nomination.
Ever since then, a dedicated band of GOP “Never Trumpers” has criticized the President’s every move and given plenty of support to the media and Democrat opponents of his agenda. Fortunately, President Trump has marginalized this group and solidified his support among Republicans. Recent polls have shown the President maintaining an astounding 90% approval rating among Republican voters.
The real political division now exists in the Democratic Party. The party is led by polarizing figures in both houses of Congress. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has been in Congress since 1987 and has served as leader of House Democrats since 2006. She is 78 years old and has been shaky in recent interviews, forgetting names and appearing confused.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has been in elected office since 1975 and has served in Congress since 1981. He has been in the Senate for almost 20 years, certainly qualifying as a card-carrying member of the political establishment.
The problem for these Democratic Party leaders, who are both quite liberal, is that the base of their party is sprinting to the political left. The favored philosophy is no longer liberalism or progressivism, it is now socialism. The clearest evidence can be seen in the recent victory of 28-year-old Latina socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. She defeated U.S. Congressman Joe Crowley (D-NY) in the June Democratic primary. Crowley served as the 4th ranking Democrat in the House of Representatives and was a ten term Congressman. He espoused all of the party’s typical positions on taxes, healthcare, immigration, etc. yet he lost to a socialist because he did not generate enough support among minorities and young voters, the base of the Democratic Party.
As the Democrats move left, it will certainly have a major impact on the 2020 presidential nomination race. There are some interesting questions that remain to be answered. Will socialist U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont run again; or will a younger far-left candidate take his place? Will potential candidates like former Vice President Joe Biden, U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) or U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) be viewed as sufficiently left wing by the base of the party?
Potentially, the field of candidates for the 2020 presidential nomination will be vast, but the number could shrink dramatically if Hillary Clinton enters the race again. Clinton, who lost the 2008 and 2016 presidential races, is a horrible candidate who is neither charismatic nor inspiring. She is vigorously opposed by millions of Americans, and even among her staunchest supporters, she is not beloved, only tolerated.
Despite these difficulties, reports have circulated over the last week that Clinton is looking at running for President in 2020. She is active on social media, raising money, generating publicity and making high profile speeches. This weekend, she joined other potential presidential candidates and addressed the American Federation of Teachers convention in Pittsburgh.
If she runs, she will enter the race with significant advantages. Through decades in the public eye, Clinton has established universal name recognition. She also operates a massive fundraising operation and a network of skilled political operatives. The problem is her unpleasant personality and her stale message would not inspire a robust turnout of grassroots Democratic Party voters.
If Clinton could not beat an upstart Democratic Senator for her party’s nomination in 2008 or a novice politician in 2016, there is little chance she could beat an incumbent President in 2020. In fact, Clinton needed a rigged primary system and unfair assistance from the Democratic National Committee to defeat Sanders for the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination in 2016.
In both of her previous losses, Clinton had the political establishment on her side. She had financial advantages as well. For example, in the 2016 race, Clinton amassed a war chest twice as large as the one Trump had at his disposal. In addition, she had 95% of the media supporting her and decades of political experience on her team that Trump did not possess, yet she still lost in an Electoral College landslide.
Ever since then, Clinton has refused to leave the political arena. She has constantly whined about the loss and blamed everyone else except herself. She has the power to wrest the 2020 presidential nomination from any of other candidates, but, if victorious, she would deal a tremendous blow to the Democratic Party and become a three-time loser as a presidential candidate.
Over the next few months, it will be interesting to see if Hillary will allow her ego to overwhelm the cold hard facts of political reality. Obviously, Trump supporters hope her ego rules supreme as they offer words of encouragement, “Run Hillary Run!”
It is always difficult for Louisiana to lose a corporate headquarters, but it is even more difficult when it involves a homegrown business. Recently, Smoothie King, a company started in Kenner, Louisiana announced the relocation of its corporate headquarters to Irving, Texas, in the Dallas metropolitan area.
Since the oil downturn in the late 1980’s, there has been a steady stream of energy companies moving their headquarters from Louisiana to Texas, usually Houston. This move offered the oil companies a chance to consolidate their operations and save plenty of costs, while trimming their payrolls. Many local residents faced the decision of leaving the state or losing their jobs.
In many ways, the business environment of the New Orleans area never recovered. This is why the news of Smoothie King leaving Louisiana brings back painful, yet familiar, memories. In this case, the expiration of a $2.4 million economic development package certainly played a role in the decision. Also, air travel is easier from the Dallas-Fort Worth airport with more nonstop international flights. Another big factor is the tax environment in Texas is very pro-business. The state has no income taxes, while Louisiana not only has an income tax; it also has the highest sales taxes in the country.
According to Smoothie King CEO Wan Kim, the Dallas area offers “a more centralized location, a larger talent pool to further enhance our growing team, and access to a greater number of quality vendors and suppliers.” There were no financial incentives offered to Smoothie King to encourage their move to Texas, but, Kim noted that “Dallas offers the advantages of being a major food and beverage hub.” Several competitors of Smoothie King, including Smoothie Factory and Jamba Juice, also call Dallas home.
After the move this summer, Smoothie King will continue with a smaller office in Metairie and will keep the naming rights on the basketball arena, the home of the New Orleans Pelicans. It is ironic that the arena will be named after a company that will be headquartered in Dallas, Texas. Currently, in Louisiana, only two of our corporations, Entergy and CenturyLink, qualify for the Fortune 500 list. Thus, it is almost impossible to find a local corporation that has the financial means to sponsor the arena or any other major sports complex.
This decision should be a wake-up call for our local and state leaders. Louisiana is not doing enough to retain our businesses and attract high paying jobs to the state. While there have been periodic announcements of start-up companies moving to the state, much more needs to be done.
A good first step would be to emulate the successful strategies employed by Florida and Texas, both states with no income tax and a thriving business climate. Otherwise, Louisiana can continue to watch other states prosper at our expense.
The second term of New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu will thankfully come to an end on Monday May 7 and it cannot get here soon enough. There is not an overwhelming desire for the new Mayor to take office, instead it is a powerful yearning for self-serving Mitch Landrieu to leave. As evidence, please visitwww.RingsidePolitics.com and see the failing grades being given to the Mayor in our online poll.
The day his term ends will mark the first time in 30 years that Mitch Landrieu has not been in political office. He started as an Uptown State Representative in the late 1980’s. In 1994, he made his first attempt for Mayor of New Orleans and lost. Nine years later, he ran for Lt. Governor and won 53% of the vote in a crowded field. Before the end of his first term, he ran for Mayor of New Orleans again and lost. In 2007, he won a second term as Lt. Governor and before the end of his term, he finally achieved his dream position, winning the Mayor’s race in 2010.
His eight years as Mayor have seemed like eternity for may New Orleans residents. Under Landrieu, crime has increased, while the NOPD has declined significantly. His interest in creating social programs to deal with crime has not worked. Despite Midnight Basketball programs and “Nola for Life” initiatives, New Orleans remains one of the murder capitals of the nation.
His leadership of the Sewerage and Water Board was abysmal, and it led to the diminished pumping capacity that created a massive flood from a moderate rainstorm last August. While the city was being overwhelmed in flood waters Landrieu refused to leave an Aspen Institute conference. His interest in hobnobbing outweighed his interest in serving his constituents.
In recent weeks, he has generated plenty of national publicity in his book tour from clueless liberal media outlets. None of the show hosts bothered to question the Mayor about the real problems in New Orleans. They just allowed him to spout his nonsense about fighting white supremacy and the legacy of racism by removing priceless, historic monuments.
His battle against the monuments and those who supported historical preservation in New Orleans was an egomaniacal quest to generate headlines and create support among members of the national media and Democratic Party leaders. The monuments were never racially contentious until Mitch Landrieu decided to spend two years and $2 million taking them down. He did not bring about racial unity in New Orleans, he created racial division. The sad thing is that he is proud of his record of promoting hate, while not providing public safety.
In the area of economic development, his record is very poor. In his eight years in office, there have been very few announcements of major employers moving to New Orleans. In addition, he has not redeveloped plenty of potentially viable projects. For example, the old Six Flags amusement park in New Orleans East remains an eyesore today
Under Landrieu, rents have risen, while taxes and fees have skyrocketed. It is very difficult to afford to live in New Orleans for middle income workers.
While those who are employed are finding it challenging to survive in New Orleans, it is truly dangerous for African American men, who suffer from an astronomically high unemployment rate and are the ones most likely to be the victims of crime in the city. Poor neighborhoods throughout New Orleans are littered with blight, drugs, poverty and horrible street conditions. These areas have received almost no attention from a Mayor supposedly focused on battling racism.
Clearly, Landrieu is trying to use his national spotlight to run for President of the United States. He is being pushed by Democrat powerbrokers like James Carville, who compare Landrieu to Obama and Clinton. Hopefully, Democratic primary will not be fooled by Landrieu’s high-powered support and his progressive rhetoric but will examine his failed record as Mayor of New Orleans.
The only question to ask is, “Did Mitch Landrieu make New Orleans a better place to live and create a safer and more harmonious city?” The answer to clearly “No,” and if he failed in New Orleans, he certainly does not merit a promotion to Pennsylvania Avenue.
In his first 15 months, President Donald Trump has fired more administration officials than many Presidents do in an entire term. At this point, it is essential that he use his Celebrity Apprentice tag line “You’re Fired,” for three more Department of Justice officials: Special Counsel Robert Mueller, “The Jackal,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions “The Weasel,” and, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein “The Snake.”
Mueller is “The Jackal” because he is trying to politically terminate the presidency of Donald Trump. There is no question that he is doing the bidding of the Deep State and trying to build a case to charge President Trump with a series of crimes.
His 11-month investigation has been a total witch hunt. It reached a new level of danger for President Trump yesterday as the office, home and hotel room of Michael Cohen, his attorney, were raided by FBI agents. Cohen is very close to Trump and has vowed to “take a bullet” for the President if necessary.
It seems the agents were looking for information about the $130,000 payment to porn star Stormy Daniels days before the November 8, 2016 presidential election. Cohen has contended that he made the payment with his own funds and was not reimbursed by President Trump or the campaign.
In the raid, agents confiscated Cohen’s computer, phone and personal financial records. As the President’s attorney, all of their communications are privileged, so there will be a team of FBI agents who will be assigned to remove those materials. Despite these assurances, famed attorney Alan Dershowitz called it a “very dangerous day for lawyer-client relations.” He condemned “the deafening silence” of the ACLU on this raid and noted that the organization would be “on every television station in America jumping up and down” if Hillary Clinton’s attorney had been targeted.
This action is a tremendous escalation of the investigation into President Trump. At a meeting of military advisers in the White House, the President addressed the raid. He called it a “disgrace,” noting that the investigators found “nothing” in their pursuit of collusion between the Russians and President Trump.
The problem for the President is that Mueller left the “collusion” aspect of the investigation many months ago. He has been working with his team of partisan Democrat attorneys and focusing on obstruction of justice and crimes unrelated to Russia.
Mueller has been successful in a collecting a few guilty pleas, such as retired Lt. General Michael Flynn, who admitted to lying to the FBI. In the case of former Trump Campaign Manager Paul Manafort, Mueller charged him for activities related to his lobbying work with the Ukrainian government several years ago.
The latest move in the investigation obviously concerns the payments Cohen made to a porn star, once again, not related to Russia.
At this point, the President needs to fire Mueller, “The Jackal,” before he wastes any more taxpayer dollars on this fishing expedition. Despite warnings from U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and others, Mueller needs to go. He has a history of botched investigations, such as the one probing the anthrax attacks of 2001 that were pinned on the wrong person.
The Special Counsel is clearly laying the groundwork for charging the President and presenting the case for Congress to impeach him. Before it gets to that point, the President needs to send him packing.
Once the President is in a firing mood, he should not stop with Mueller. He also needs to fire Rosenstein, “The Snake.” This is the Deputy Attorney General who wrote the memo recommending that former FBI Director James Comey be fired. However, he is also the Justice Department official who hired Mueller in the first place and started this mission to impeach the President.
Rosenstein also referred the latest raid to a New York U.S. Attorney who authorized FBI agents to seize Cohen’s materials and his attorney-clients communications with President Trump.
As noted by the President, Rosenstein also “signed the FISA warrant” based on a phony Clinton campaign funded dossier that actually involved collusion with Russian sources.
Finally, the President needs to fire Attorney General Jeff Sessions “The Weasel.” Unfortunately, Sessions has been a tremendous disappointment as Attorney General. By recusing himself from the Russia investigation, he created the Mueller monster. He seemingly has little to no control over the Justice Department. The real authority rests with Rosenstein and Mueller, not Sessions. He is either too intimidated or compromised to interfere with a Special Counsel who is on a mission to destroy the President.
To make matters worse, Sessions refused to appoint a Second Special Counsel to investigate a variety of abuses involved in the FISA warrant and other matters. There is seemingly no real investigation into Hillary Clinton’s suspicious handling of the Uranium One deal or her mishandling of top secret email communications. She destroyed 33,000 emails that were subpoenaed by U.S. House investigators, but absolutely nothing has happened to her.
While FBI officials raided the homes of Manafort and Cohen, Hillary was given special kid glove treatment in her July 5, 2016 interview. She was not under oath and her responses were not recorded.
Hillary’s attorneys were never raided by FBI agents, they were given immunity. The double standard is atrocious. The Deep State is furiously trying to end the Trump presidency and Sessions, “The Weasel,” is a mere bystander.
Today, the President remarked that Sessions “made a terrible mistake” when he recused himself in the Russia investigation. As noted by talk show host Mark Levin, the Justice Department is “out of control,” so Attorney General Jeff Sessions must “step aside.” If he does not, the President must fire him.
President Trump seems to finally understand this is a war on his agenda and an attempt to negate the 2016 election. He called the Mueller team “a biased group of people” with “the biggest conflicts of interest I have ever seen.” Today, he noted that he has been totally cooperative and given over “a million pages in documents to the Special Counsel.” However, nothing short of impeachment will satisfy Mueller.
Mr. President, the time to act is now. Fire these three stains on the Department of Justice and end this “attack on our country.” If not, the consequences for your presidency and our country will be severe.