Aides to aides to aides of Jeb Bush have revealed to The New York Times his six-point plan to win the Republican nomination. Number Three is one that would not have occurred to most of us: "Woo Lindsey Graham." Well, it'd be different.
Trump, meanwhile, has released a new campaign ad:
Note how, again, Trump is defying all the conventional wisdom the consultant-industrial complex has heaped upon poor old Jeb. Ads are supposed to be either mawkish sob-sister biography (Kasich's "son of a mailman" routine) or soft-focus platitudinous "I believe in an America more Americanly American than any America that's ever been" uplift (Romney last time round), or vague citations of experience punctuated by exciting news that you've been endorsed by another 27 admirals (Jeb, currently). Instead, Trump, the supposed reality-show celeb, has just issued a hard-focus non-autobiographical non-Americana ad that's all policy, on immigration. And it's getting tons of knock-on coverage in the news pages.
My kid, incidentally, expressed an interest in seeing Trump at his stops in New Hampshire or Vermont this week. Not because he necessarily supports Trump, or is even particularly interested in politics. But he and his pals like watching Trump speeches on the Internet because, as my son puts it, "he just sort of riffs on the day's news" - like one of the late-night guys: "Hey, have you seen this Starbucks Christmas thing? What's up with that?" By contrast, the other candidates bore him and his school chums rigid because it's just the same canned stump speech and it sounds fake the first time, never mind the 277th. I don't know whether this means anything, or even whether it will work in the long run, but it's different.
On the other hand, to those who say it's just Trump's outsized personality that's driving his numbers, this comment on a Steve Sailer post struck me as speaking for many of his supporters:
I'm not that crazy about Trump's personality, in fact I don't think he has the presidential temperament. The problem for me is that I agree with almost everything he says.
As Ann Coulter has been saying to the other candidates for months, if you don't like Trump, steal his issue. As his ad reminds us, most of the Republican field is still reluctant to go there.
~SERJEANTS TWO: Serjeants-at-Arms crop up more often in this space than you might expect. I wrote about the Sergeant-at-Arms of the Canadian House of Commons a year or so back, after the usual Islamic lunatic had decided to go on a shooting rampage, firing wildly down the Centre Block of a very lightly guarded Parliament:
In the only good news of the day he was shot dead by Kevin Vickers, the Sergeant-at-Arms of the House of Commons. The Sergeant-at-Arms is a Gilbert & Sullivan character who wears a goofy looking hat and has two main functions in Parliament: 1) At the start of the day's proceedings in the Commons, he carries the Mace into the chamber; 2) When the Queen is present in Parliament, he carries the Mace into the chamber and then covers it up with a black cloth. In a split second, Mr Vickers understood his ceremonial role had turned suddenly real, pulled the pistol out of his drawer, and sent the western world's latest Soldier of Allah to his virgins with a single bullet. We will have need of men like Kevin Vickers in the years ahead, and many more of us will have to recover that primal survival instinct.
Across the ocean in the great imperial metropolis, the new Serjeant-at-Arms of the British House of Commons is quite a contrast:
A self-described "Moroccan living in the UK" has been appointed serjeant at arms at the House of Commons, a role which requires him to sit in the Chamber and carry the mace. Kamal El-Hajji, the first non-white in the 600 year old post, will take up the job with "the help of Allah".
Mr el-Hajjii appears, at the very minimum to have a defective understanding of the political neutrality of the civil service. He recently sent a good-luck Tweet to the Labour Party's first Muslim candidate for Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan:
We have faith in you and we know you can do it.
Can Mr Khan do it and become the first Muslim Mayor of London? Probably - notwithstanding that he has been a lobbyist for known and suspected terrorists. In that sense, Serjeant-at-Arms el-Hajiii is very different from his Canadian counterpart. Kevin Vickers shot dead a terrorist; Kamal el-Hajjii is a supporter of a lobbyist for terrorists*. But no matter: a man called "Kevin Vickers" represents the past of the British and Canadian parliaments, and a man called "Kamal el-Hajjii" represents their future. As Muslim high achievers rise to be Serjeant-at-Arms and Chief Constable and Lord Chief Justice and Chancellor of the Exchequer, it will become even more impolitic to question the virtues of mass Muslim immigration, and it will be ever easier to rein in outmoded concepts such as freedom of expression in the interests of social harmony.
~Andrew McCarthy thinks the pajama boys at Twitter have already surrendered to Islamic supremacism in a new speech code that "prohibits the promotion of hate content, sensitive topics, and violence globally". So Twitter prohibits "sensitive topics"? It's rare to see it spelled out that bluntly. But it will seem perfectly routine a few years hence.
In other words, any effective pushback has to happen sooner rather than later. And yet again Kathy Shaidle is right: instead of another conservative "news" site, we need alternatives to a handful of dominant social media platforms ever more openly inimical to free speech.
This One Is The Cats Meow...
I was blown away. He has put together a very impressive group of talented musicians and back up singers that expertly serve up a 50's/60's jazz lounge sound. Steyn has a nice voice that flows with the arrangements. And the assortment of songs, from the 'Top Cat' cartoon theme song with a pinch of Flintstones theme song tossed in at the end, to my favorite, 'Cat Scratch Fever' with great trumpets, to Daffy Duck's, 'I thought I saw a puddy cat.'
Actually, that would be Tweety Bird's "I Tawt I Taw", although my version owes more to Sting, circa 1983. But let's not quibble. As C Winkler says:
Get up and dance with your kitty!!!
~And finally for our readers Down Under: Don't forget to book early for my Australian tour next month. This may be my only appearance in Cloncurry this decade.
[*CORRECTED FROM EARLIER VERSION CONFUSING MESSRS AL-HAJJII AND KHAN]