- The Washington Times - Tuesday, November 27, 2018

“Conservatives can’t even sneeze without lefties accusing them of fomenting violence. But when lefties do it? It’s just speaking truth to power or something. Take Rob Reiner, for instance. He doesn’t seem to be at risk of any pushback from liberals for a tweet about Donald Trump,” notes Twitchy.com, which monitors the Twitter realm for signs of liberal bias, outrage and other matters.

The actor wrote this about the president on Tuesday. “The noose is tightening on the Criminal-in-Chief. And all the [expletive] tweets in the world are not going to save his racist [expletive],” Mr. Reiner tweeted.

“‘The noose is tightening’? Geez, Rob. If Rob Reiner had an (R) after his name, does anyone doubt that Twitter would give him the Jesse Kelly treatment?” Twitchy asks.

Mr. Kelly — a combat veteran, talk radio host, conservative columnist and former congressional candidate — was permanently banned from Twitter on Sunday for unspecified reasons. The ban has proved to be a significant cultural moment for many conservative thinkers — “a conservative revolt,” according to Politico — and a revolt so vigorous that Mr. Kelly was back on Twitter by Tuesday afternoon.

The combatants in this action included Glenn Reynolds, a University of Tennessee law professor, USA Today columnist and founder of the popular Instapundit blog.

“Twitter’s gone crazy banning people on the right, so I’ve deactivated my Twitter account,” wrote Mr. Reynolds. “I decided to suspend them, as they are suspending others.”

In an interview with Fox News host Tucker Carlson, Mr. Kelly himself warned his host, “They’ll come for you too,” and said he had been banned for leaning right and being truthful on Twitter, which has 336 million users, according to Statista.com, an industry source.

“Twitter has banned Jesse Kelly — are they policing hate, or suppressing political ideas?” asks Washington Examiner commentary writer Tiana Lowe. “As they begin to curate their content and ban people with perspectives they don’t like, they take on the risk of being viewed by the courts as publishers, and of becoming legally liable for what they allow to be published.”

Miss Lowe also asks: “Was Jesse Kelly’s real crime the ideas he espoused, or his effectiveness in spreading them?”

These questions appear to have prompted Twitter to reconsider Mr. Kelly’s case.

“For me, the Twitter turning point came when the company denied that it shadow-bans conservatives. It then explained what it does do, which corresponds precisely to the definition of shadow-banning. Like other Silicon Valley tech giants, Twitter is run by people who think it is their job to help left-wing Democrats win elections. There is no reason why conservatives should support Twitter,” wrote John Hinderaker, founder of the PowerLine blog, and a lawyer turned think tank president.

THE FIRST LADY’S CHRISTMAS, PART 2

Critics went after the gorgeous, patriotic Christmas decorations at the White House, the designs and installation shepherded by first lady Melania Trump. Journalists dwelled on some red fir trees, among other things.

“Melania’s red Christmas trees are my favorite thing so far this holiday season,” wrote Bre Payton, a staff writer for The Federalist who reviewed public comments on the decorations, and had a comment herself.

“No matter what decorations the first lady chooses, many will see ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ in them because they dislike her husband. Going full-on crimson and not looking back with this year’s Christmas decor is Melania-the-expert-troll at her finest. My favorite part of the video is the close-up shot on the wreath made of sharpened pencils with ‘Be Best’ printed on them, the slogan for Melania’s anti-cyberbullying initiative,” Mr. Payton said. “Using handcrafted Christmas decor to double down on the Be Best initiative is a power move, as were the bright red trees.”

A MOMENT WITH CARLY

Former presidential hopeful Carly Fiorina has launched a new podcast titled “By Example,” meant to lend insight on leadership and authentic problem solving. Her guests include Colin Powell, Bob Dole and NBA star Baron Davis. “I think we get really confused about what leadership is. On ‘By Example,’ we lift up the real leaders: people who are focused on changing the order of things for the better and solving real problems that are right in front of them,” Mrs. Fiorina says.

Find her new commentary at CarlyFiorina.com.

SEEKING PRISONERS, AND THE MISSING

Of interest to members of Rolling Thunder, veteran’s groups and other folks still concerned about soldiers who were prisoners of war or missing in action during the Vietnam War, Judicial Watch announced Tuesday that it has sued the Defense Department, seeking government records from 1973 to the present regarding American POWs and MIAs.

“Judicial Watch filed the lawsuit after the Pentagon failed to respond to two Freedom of Information Act requests,” the watchdog group said in a statement, offering details of its requests — which sought lists of the POWs and MIAs provided to North Vietnam, as well as materials used to brief President Richard Nixon in 1973 about those who could still be in that nation at the time.

The organization also is seeking “live sighting” reports of U.S. soldiers from Jan. 27, 1973, to the present, along with data collected from a classified program known as “PAVE SPIKE,” plus electronic messages containing individual code numbers issued to U.S. airmen and were transmitted from the ground in Vietnam and/or Laos from Jan. 27, 1973, to the present.

“The Vietnam MIA-POW issue is a sore spot for many veterans and concerned Americans. Why is the Pentagon stonewalling our attempts to obtain information that is clearly in the public interest?” asks Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.

POLL DU JOUR

42 percent of Americans say the U.S. system of government is “basically sound but needs some improvement”; 52 percent of Republicans, 42 percent of independents and 34 percent of Democrats agree.

26 percent say the U.S. system of government is “not too sound and needs many improvements”; 21 percent of Republicans, 24 percent of independents and 32 percent of Democrats agree.

22 percent say the U.S. system of government is “not sound at all and needs significant changes”; 10 percent of Republicans, 23 percent of independents and 31 percent of Democrats agree.

10 percent say the U.S. system of government is “basically sound and essentially needs no changes”; 16 percent of Republicans, 11 percent of independents and 3 percent of Democrats agree.

Source: A Monmouth University poll of 802 U.S. adults conducted Nov. 9-12 and released Tuesday.

• Murmurs and asides to [email protected]


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