Programming note: On Tuesday Mark will be live with Maajid Nawaz at 6pm GMT/1pm North American Eastern. Later, he'll check in with Bo Snerdley's Rush Hour, live on New York's radio powerhouse 77 WABC at 4pm Eastern.
~Let me reprint in total a short item I published on September 12th 2022:
There's been so much talk about the imminent "Red Wave" that it's easy to forget Mr McCarthy is not yet Speaker but merely Speaker-Designate. As for that incoming GOP tsunami, Democrats now purport to be spooked by all the polls showing them ahead:
'Even as Democrats spent a week or more spinning a "there's no red wave coming" message to try and tout their strength and popularity among voters, the party of President Biden is quietly fretting that their candidates are...in the lead?
'Those worries are, evidently, based on polls showing Democrat midterm candidates up over GOP opponents in place where polls showed Hillary Clinton leading against Trump in 2016 — and we all know how that turned out — as well as in places surveys incorrectly showed Biden running up leads in places he wasn't actually winning.'
So what do you think this is?
2016, when Trump won against the odds and the polls?
Or another 2020, with Dems and their allies arranging the landscape to make the early hours of Wednesday morning look plausible?
Two months later, we discovered how that worked out.
We are now in the most boring phase of America's quadrennial electoral cycle: all horse-race all the time until November of next year. And already "conservative" talk-radio is slavering over the straws in the wind of the next incoming red tsunami. They were agog this morning over this story:
President Biden has all but erased internal Democratic Party criticism. But only three postwar presidents had lower approval ratings than Biden at this point in their presidency.
- Biden's job approval rating is 43%, according to the FiveThirtyEight polling average.
- Nearly half (45%) of Americans had no confidence in Biden's ability to make the right decisions for the country's future, according to a Washington Post-ABC News poll just before the State of the Union.
- Only 16% of respondents in the poll said they were better off financially than when Biden became president — compared to 41% who said they were worse off.
Hence all the "anybody can beat Biden" chatter on the airwaves. Have there been any polls on the likelihood of Maricopa County voting machines being up to snuff on Election Day? Or the odds on getting an emergency plumber out to the Fulton County counting room in a timely manner? By the standards of the entirety of the rest of the west and of the functioning parts of the developing world, America's election "system" is a corrupt joke. It's deeply disturbing to hear "conservative" talk-hosts pretending the above bollocks has any real-world meaning.
I have likewise been sceptical that the "classified" documents and the oh-that-Hunter-laptop-isn't-Russian-disinfo-after-all stuff indicate that Washington insiders are preparing to dethrone Quid-Pro-Joe and install Cackles the Clown. The people who matter are content with the present arrangements: by historical standards, Biden had a spectacular midterm, and they figure they can drag him to an even more spectacular re-election. Hell, after November 2024's put to bed, why not shoot for repealing the 22nd Amendment?
War with China: 48% say yes, 59% say Biden's blowing it
There's not going to be a war with China, for the very obvious reason America would lose. As for Biden "blowing it", not from the point of view of the Chinese Politburo. And they own him.
~From that same September 12th column, another brief quote:
The war is lost, at home and abroad. On the domestic front, we doubled the rate of Muslim immigration to the west and began assimilating ourselves with Islam's strictures on freedom of expression and the like... Our rulers quickly determined that it was easier to punish us than our enemies.
Our "enemies"? The Government of the United States has taken twenty years to start negotiating a plea deal with the 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.
As for "us", "Prevent" is the UK government programme designed to "prevent" people becoming terrorists and thus blowing up Tube trains or Arianna Grande concerts. But, just to affirm the truth of that last sentence above, it has naturally evolved into taking a more expansive view of "right-wing extremists" than of excitable young Mohammedan chappies to whom Prevent is exquisitely sensitive.
How "extreme" does a "right-winger" have to be to attract the attentions of British counter-terrorism? Well...
The inquiry, by former Charity Commission boss William Shawcross, last week disclosed how Prevent officials had claimed that a leading Conservative politician was associated with "far-Right sympathetic audiences".
Mr. Shawcross declined to name the individual but Prevent sources last night confirmed to the MoS that it was Mr Rees-Mogg...
That would be Jacob Rees-Mogg, who served as Lord President of the Council throughout Boris Johnson's ministry and as Secretary of State for Business in Liz Truss's. I regard him as a useless bloke who went along with all the destruction of the last three years - lockdown, vaccines, the ruination of a generation of British children, the lot.
And yet and yet... How does a cabinet minister wind up getting monitored by the counter-terrorism guys? Well...
The MoS understands that Mr. Rees-Mogg was named in a 2019 report by Prevent's Research Information and Communications Unit (RICU) that analysed a group of social media users it described as "actively patriotic and proud".
Gotcha. So Prevent plays it softly-softly with the firebreathing imams, but don't worry, it's surveilling the Lord President of Her Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council. As The Daily Sceptic's Nick Dixon summarises it:
There you have it. Patriotism is the new terrorism.
Oh, yes. Very much so.
~A personal footnote to the above: The Jacob Rees-Mogg Show has been announced as the successor to The Mark Steyn Show on GB News, so I would not be fully human if I did not harbour in my unworthy breast a desire that he should flop spectacularly. Yet I can't help but feel a vague suspicion that this very timely leak - suggesting that the unfailingly torpid Jacob Rees-Mogadon hangs up his pinstripes after dark and goes skulking around in balaclava and Semtex belt - is a genius publicity strategy.
~Up against a Cabinet reshuffle and an imploding deputy PM, Steyn's departure from GB News was nevertheless the week's Number One story on Westminster's Number One political gossip site - not bad for a colonial oik The Guardian dismissed as a "niche Canadian".
~Notwithstanding Mark's brace of heart attacks, we had a busy weekend at SteynOnline, starting with Mark himself back in the chair for our Clubland Q&A. Rick McGinnis's Saturday movie date offered Julie Andrews in The Americanization of Emily - and Tal Bachman took on white-goods privilege. Steyn's Song of the Week marked the passing of Burt Bacharach.
If you were too busy this weekend not watching GB News, we hope you'll want to check out one or three of the foregoing as a new week gets underway.
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