Three Things You Need to Know – February 23, 2018

The Most Hated Man in America Today

He is the most hated man in the world today.

Former Deputy Scot Peterson resigned yesterday after video surveillance showed that he was armed and stationed at Stoneman Douglas High School while the shooting took place.

Instead of immediately addressing the target and putting an end to the rampage, Peterson cowered behind a concrete column in a stairwell.

The sheriff of Broward County suspended Peterson without pay pending an internal investigation, but the officer beat him to it. Peterson, knowing his fate, resigned and retired yesterday.

This morning, police officers line Peterson’s home. They are guarding against anyone who wants to harm Peterson—and that’s a lot of people. The officers themselves probably don’t even want to protect this coward.

But before we take up our pitchforks and torches and charge his door, let’s remember something.

We weren’t there.

As much as we would like to think that we would be brave and execute a single kill shot to the Stoneman shooter before he could take 17 lives, would that actually play out in real life?

Would we be brave?

Would we have the courage?

We all hope we would, but you don’t really know until you are in that situation.

I’m not trying to defend Peterson’s gutless inaction. I absolutely think he should have used his training to save lives that day.

I’m just saying we aren’t him. We don’t know what was going through his mind.

Peterson could have been a hero, but he made other choices.

Now, he has to live with that guilt for the rest of his life.

So before we call for blood, let’s remember that he already has his punishment.

National Socialism Hits CPAC

“France is no longer free!” Marion Le Pen took the stage at CPAC yesterday and spent the first several minutes of her speech destroying the EU. She lamented about lost sovereignty at the hands of Brussels and advocated the new global slogan: America First… Britain First - and yes - FRANCE FIRST!

I searched around yesterday - after she left the stage - to see what people were saying. By and large, no one was saying a thing. The conservative media and voices were all but silent. That’s probably because everything she said sounded exactly like what Trump campaigned on in 2016. Anti-EU and other large trade organizations? Check! Anti-immigration? Check! Sceptical of Muslim migrants? Double check!

Now here’s why this is so scary. All the issues I just said, mega trade alliances, immigration, AND Muslim migrants are ACTUAL legitimate issues. In fact, a big reason for why Trump won was because he gave voice to these concerns that, by and large, had been ignored for decades. If you watched Marion Le Pen yesterday, you saw something the new American right hasn’t had in… well ever. A young, female, photogenic firebrand. There she was at CPAC, flashing that million dollar smile, and giving the crowd EVERYTHING they wanted to hear. At one point a chant of “VIVA LA FRANCE” rang out over the conference hall.

Let’s get one thing straight right now. The far-right in Europe has absolutely NOTHING in common with American conservatism. These people and groups are ethno-nationalist populists. The only thing they’re concerned with is using real issues - like trade, the economy and immigration - and focusing people’s rage. That right there is how monsters are born. That’s how they gain power, and when they get that power, they aren’t interested in reducing the size and scope of government. They expand it through control, a massive welfare state, and aggression. That right there is National Socialism.

There is a global effort among the far-right to link themselves to the success of Donald Trump. Now, I get that they would want to try and emulate that success and ride our coattails, but we shouldn’t be helping them do it. The European far-right, which has more in common with the alt-right than anything else, was actually giving a speech to American conservatives yesterday. They’re being legitimized and co-opted into the American right. This is dangerous, and we need to put a stop to it right now.

March for Our Lives

Abraham Lincoln said, “I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts.”

So, here are the real facts about the #NeverAgain movement and the upcoming “March for Our Lives” rally, planned for March 24th in Washington DC. All week, CNN and the rest of the media have portrayed this movement as “grassroots” and totally teen-driven. Maybe it was in the very beginning. But it’s not anymore.

Last Sunday, less than a week after the horrible tragedy at Stoneman Douglas High School, junior Cameron Kasky set up a GoFundMe account to raise money for the “March for Our Lives.” Kasky is the teenager who confronted Senator Marco Rubio onstage at CNN’s Monster Truck Rally event Wednesday night. So far, more than 25,000 people have donated over $2 million.

What is the money actually for? On the GoFundMe page, Kasky says, “the funds will be spent on the incredibly difficult and expensive process that is organizing a march like this. We have people making more specific plans, but for now, know that this is for the march and everything left over will be going to the victims’ funds.”

The “March for Our Lives” has received an additional $2 million in pledges from George Clooney, Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, and Jeffrey Katzenberg.

Cameron Kasky’s father said that Cameron and his friends are “being directed by people with knowledge of how to responsibly spend this money and it’s going to be very transparent.”

Hope it goes a lot better than George Clooney’s September 11th fund.

Kasky’s dad also said that “with Clooney’s help” the teens have brought in some attorneys, some administrative help, and a public relations firm whose clients include Meryl Streep, Will Smith, Charlize Theron, and Woody Allen, among many other celebrities. Why do you need all that if this is such a grassroots thing, driven by teenagers? Because these are now 16-year-olds with $4 million at their disposal.

Already, the “March for Our Lives” rally has a slick website selling merchandise. Make no mistake, this is a campaign.

The new spokesman for the rally (yes, it already has a “spokesman”) says, “Any leftover funds will go towards supporting a continuing, long-term effort by and for young people to end the epidemic of mass shootings that has turned our classrooms into crime scenes.” In other words, “March for Our Lives” is essentially a new gun-control lobbying firm.

Now the teens have brought in Deena Katz to help organize the rally. Katz is the co-executive producer of Dancing With the Stars. Oh, and she was also co-executive director of the Los Angeles Women’s March.

The rally is also being organized in collaboration with a nonprofit group called “Everytown for Gun Safety.” The advisory board of this group includes one former governor and six former mayors – all Democrats. It also includes Michael Bloomberg, Warren Buffett, and Kenneth Lerer [Leer] who helped start The Huffington Post, BuzzFeed, and a website called StoptheNRA.com.

Kasky told CBS, “At the end of the day, this isn’t a red and blue thing. This isn’t Democrats or Republicans. This is about everybody and how we are begging for our lives.”

Perhaps Kasky truly feels that way, but he’s getting a crash course in how American politics and media work. This may have started as a teen cause, but it has been hijacked by powerful forces on the Left with a very specific agenda.

MORE 3 THINGS

Would Glenn make a better bounty hunter or a Jedi? You'll have to find out in a new episode of the Beltway Banthas Podcast, where Glenn goes deep on Star Wars with host Stephen Kent. In this 45 minute discussion, Stephen and Glenn explore the political themes of the Star Wars franchise, Darth Vader's redemption from Return of the Jedi, Glenn's earliest memories of seeing the films and even debate elements of the latest Star Wars films.

If you enjoy the pop culture and nerdy discussions that Glenn, Pat and Stu get into on the radio show, you'll love this! After you're through, you can also check out Stu Burguiere's appearance on Beltway Banthas to talk Star Wars. You can find that here.


It's never too early to start your Christmas, Hanukah, or Kwanzaa shopping. Or even birthday gift shopping. Especially if that special someone in your life is a Democrat. Because at last count, pretty much all the Democrats are now running for president. And that means there has never been a wider selection of official candidate merchandise to choose from. Whether you're into environmentalism, feminism, classism, socialism, or just plain love, there is a smorgasbord of classy items that you and yours will treasure forever... or at least until the next presidential election.

We have browsed each of the candidates' online stores, so you don't have to (it only took us three months). We have curated only the finest items from each of the Democrats running for president of the United States of America. Without further ado, here is your handy progressive gift guide – or maybe your what-not-to-gift guide.

First, the bargain basement options. Hurry! Time is running out to grab your Beto bandana, or your Delaney pack of golf balls, because at this point Stu has as much of a chance as these guys of getting the nomination.

Tom Steyer, for example – is he still in the race?


https://shop.tomsteyer.com/collections/frontpage/products/tom-2020-pattern-tee


There's way too much Tom here. That shirt's got more Toms than a Caucasian dentists' convention.

For the slightly more moderate Democrat in your life, perhaps they'd like to join the "Yang Gang"…

https://shop.yang2020.com/collections/bumper-stickers/products/yanggang-decal


Andrew Yang is a lock for Math Club president…


https://shop.yang2020.com/collections/apparel/products/math-hat


But for actual president? Well, I wouldn't make plans for how you're going to spend your $1,000-per-month Yang allowance just yet.

If you happen to be shopping for your dog, may I suggest this lovely "Dogs for Delaney" dog collar…


https://store.johndelaney.com/products/dogs-for-delaney-collar


John Delaney's definitely going to secure the canine vote with this kind of outreach. As for any human votes, that's another question entirely.

How 'bout this tastefully understated "Natural Canvas" Michael Bennet tote to remind you he's also still here?...


https://store.michaelbennet.com/michael-bennet-for-america-natural-canvas-tote/


Then again, it's a tote. So, it'll end up on the floor of your closet and you won't have it with you until that one random moment when you're out somewhere and you really need a tote bag. Just like Democrats will really wish they had a moderate when we're in the middle of the socialist nightmare of their creation.

Captain Planet himself, Jay Inslee recently dropped out of the race, but don't let that stop you from picking up what may be the greatest single item sold by anyone in this race…


https://store.jayinslee.com/elvis-the-elves-the-mystery-of-the-melting-snow-by-jay-inslee/


A children's book called Elvis & the Elves: the Mystery of the Melting Snow. Written and illustrated by Governor Jay Inslee. Talk about a whodunnit – how could that snow possibly be melting? Spoiler alert: it's because of evil, white, patriarchal capitalism. And Donald Trump.

Then there's the candidate who thinks you're a moron that can't pronounce his last name: Steve Bullock...


https://shop.stevebullock.com/collections/apparel/products/emoji-t-shirt


Get it? Bull. Lock. Oh, so that's how you say the name that sounds exactly how it's spelled.

There's another candidate who also thinks you need help pronouncing his last name…


https://store.peteforamerica.com/collections/apparel/products/boot-edge-edge-t-shirt


And he is definitely right about that. So, thank you, Pete "Boot Edge Edge." That helps.

Just outside the bargain bin section, but just barely, are candidates like Julian Castro and his "El Presidente" t-shirt…


https://store.julianforthefuture.com/julian-castro-loteria-card-white-tee/


When your last name's Castro, do you really want to go with a weird drawing of yourself as if you're a classic Latin American dictator on a postage stamp?

If you prefer a little "dark psychic forces" battling in your candidates, you'll love Marianne Williamson's "Turn Love Into a Political Force" rally sign…


https://store.marianne2020.com/collections/signs/products/love-rally-sign


"Turn Love Into a Political Force" would be an even better title for a Marianne Williamson album of 80s cover songs. And if you think I'm joking, then you haven't heard Bernie Sanders' classic 1987 folk album, We Shall Overcome. That's not a joke. Well, it is a joke, but it's also a very real thing.

Now, just a quick pause to consider the peculiar baby-wear that way too many candidates are selling…

…including Elizabeth Warren's trans-pride flag onesie. Let me get this straight – we can't force any gender on a child, because that's just cruel. But we can force a political advertisement on a baby? How do we know that baby is actually a Biden or Warren fan? The child may not even be a Democrat or a Socialist at all. That baby might self-identify as a Libertarian, or Republican, or even worse – a moderate Democrat.

Now to the premium items from the premium candidates. Elizabeth Warren – the candidate with the most honesty in her advertising…


https://shop.elizabethwarren.com/collections/apparel/products/impolite-arrogant-women-make-history-unisex-t-shirt

-AND-

https://shop.elizabethwarren.com/collections/drinkware/products/strong-american-unions-mug


Warren's merchandise reflects the woman herself – cold and humorless (watch her "This isn't funny" clip from the last debate here at the 4:27 mark). I'm sure she's really fun once you get to know her. Then again, maybe not.

Speaking of serious women, Kamala Harris wants to be president very badly for you, the people, as you can tell from her "For the People" poster…


https://store.kamalaharris.org/poster-for-the-people/


At $29.99 though, she's sure not charging "people's" prices. Of course, she might be having to pay royalties to a certain someone for riffing on their poster. Just saying.

For the race's number one socialist, there's a whole lot of capitalism going on in Bernie Sanders' campaign. He sells so many delightful items that it's hard to choose. But we did anyway. The most random item is this hundred-dollar, black, "Art of a Political Revolution – Artists for Bernie Sanders Coaches Jacket"…


https://store.berniesanders.com/collections/apparel/products/artists-for-bernie-coaches-jacket


Coaches across the land will be clamoring for this one. You know, since coaches are such a strong Bernie-socialist demographic.

If that's a little over your budget you might consider a "Feel the Bern" fanny pack, to help store all those government freebies you'll get from Bernie…


https://store.berniesanders.com/collections/apparel/products/feel-the-bern-fanny-pack


This is the only context in which you'll ever want to hear "feel the burn" and "fanny" in the same sentence.

And finally, from front-runner Joe Biden, we have this fine "Women's Fitted Biden Polo." Which is just about the best polo description ever…


https://store.joebiden.com/collections/apparel/products/biden-polo-womens-fit


It promises the kind of snug approach that Biden loves to provide women. Even when they don't ask.

This was one of the first homesteads in the area in the 1880's and was just begging to be brought back to its original glory — with a touch of modern. When we first purchased the property, it was full of old stuff without any running water, central heat or AC, so needless to say, we had a huge project ahead of us. It took some vision and a whole lot of trust, but the mess we started with seven years ago is now a place we hope the original owners would be proud of.

To restore something like this is really does take a village. It doesn't take much money to make it cozy inside, if like me you are willing to take time and gather things here and there from thrift shops and little antique shops in the middle of nowhere.

But finding the right craftsman is a different story.

Matt Jensen and his assistant Rob did this entire job from sketches I made. Because he built this in his off hours it took just over a year, but so worth the wait. It wasn't easy as it was 18"out of square. He had to build around that as the entire thing we felt would collapse. Matt just reinforced the structure and we love its imperfections.

Here are a few pictures of the process and the transformation from where we started to where we are now:

​How it was

It doesn't look like much yet, but just you wait and see!

By request a photo tour of the restored cabin. I start doing the interior design in earnest tomorrow after the show, but all of the construction guys are now done. So I mopped the floors, washed the sheets, some friends helped by washing the windows. And now the unofficial / official tour.

The Property

The views are absolutely stunning and completely peaceful.