The most telling moment of the debate

At least it was for me.

What amazes me, and has amazed me for quite some time, is that no level of corruption, no amount of lying, will get anyone of the left on the wrong side of virtually the entire media. And this was particularly true about the “neutral” “moderator” who did everything he could to stop the question and protect Biden. This business with Hunter Biden and Burisma has for some reason been used as the basis of criticism of The President. But at least there is still this: ‘China ate your lunch, Joe’: Trump rips Hunter Biden, alleged $3.5M payout from Moscow.

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden on Tuesday repeatedly denied at the first presidential debate that his son Hunter Biden got $3.5 million from the wife of Moscow’s former mayor.

Biden, the former vice president, broadly defended Hunter’s controversial business relationships in China, Russia and Ukraine — while specifically denying the large alleged payment, first disclosed last week.

“China ate your lunch, Joe, and no wonder — your son goes in and he takes out, he takes out billions of dollars, takes out billions of dollars to manage. He makes millions of dollars,” Trump said, referring to a business deal reached after Hunter flew to China in 2013 aboard Air Force Two.

“Simply not true,” Biden said.

“And also while we’re at it: Why is it, just out of curiosity, the mayor of Moscow, his wife, gave your son $3.5 million?” Trump said, referring to a bombshell allegation in a 87-page report from the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.

Elena Baturina, the richest woman in Russia and the widow of Yury Luzhkov, the former mayor of Moscow, allegedly made the transfer in 2014.

“What did he do to deserve it?” Trump pressed Biden. “What did he do with Burisma to deserve $183,000?” he added, referring to the Ukraine energy firm that employed Biden’s son while he led the Obama administration’s Ukraine policy.

And if th3 $3.5m isn’t enough of an issue, there is always this that might be worth a look:

As for the debate in general, the moderator never allowed the President to press his points with the above just an example of a general rule. A no stage was Trump allowed to directly engage in a probing conversation with Biden. Nevertheless, it will be those moments that may yet have saved the day for Trump since he did in the end press enough from Biden that may yet convince enough voters to vote Republican in sufficient numbers to exceed the level of electoral fraud. Those people who believe Trump should have been more polite are merely wishing for the return of Mitt Romney.

The first presidential debate in full

That’s the debate in full above. Biden was completely vacuous and where he was asked for substance, such as over packing the Supreme Court, he out and out refused to answer. There are many scraps for both sides to pick over. For myself, Trump has more to take away but Biden remained lucid right to the end, even if he kept saying the same things Democrats always say. The only post-debate poll I’ve seen shows that among Hispanics, Trump was seen to win 66-34. Still, after all is said and done, the election will determined by the extent to which the Dems can get away with fraud. Biden survived the debate only because of the protection offered by the “moderator”.

The Battle of Salamis 2500 years ago this month

Western civilisation has been put to the test many times but this may have been the most critical, and it happened exactly two and a half millennia ago. Here is a memorial to that day: Freedom, Barbarism, and Triremes. It begins.

Twenty-five hundred years ago this month, a Greek naval armada, composed largely of Athenian ships led by the brilliant statesman Themistocles, won a decisive victory over the massive navy of the Persian king Xerxes in the straits of Salamis. This victory effectively ended a decade of Persian efforts to subjugate the autonomous cities of ancient Greece to barbarian rule.

Commemorating this event is not antiquarianism. By preserving the freedom of the Greeks, the victory at Salamis made possible a period of human flourishing in the arts, sciences, philosophy, and politics that the world has rarely seen, one that would prove foundational to Western civilization and whose rival for significance might only be found in the Italian Renaissance. In remembering it, we remind ourselves of what makes the West both so distinct and so fragile.

When I, as a professor of political science, teach my students about an event so critical to our shared history, I try to show them how the texts of the ancient world convey both the dramatic urgency of political life and the human wisdom inherent in learning about its affairs. In reading accounts of the battle by Herodotus, Thucydides, Aeschylus, and Plutarch, I’ve often wondered about that morning two and half millennia ago—about what Themistocles was thinking in the hours and minutes leading up to a battle that he had engineered. After all, the placement and timing of this battle were largely his own doing; through subterfuge practiced on both the Persian king and his own allies he manufactured a battle on which the liberty of Greece rested.

First presidential debate @ 11:00 AEST today

Where to Watch

11 a.m. AEST on Sept. 30 on SBS, ABC News, Sky News and Channel Nine

The first presidential debate was originally planned for Indiana’s University of Notre Dame, but the school pulled out due to COVID-19 concerns. Instead, the debate will take place at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. However, the city will decide when the event gets closer whether or not to allow a live audience.

Can also pick up the debate on C-Span and all over the net.

Topics for the first Trump-Biden debate

The first debate between President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden will cover six topics. However, the topics are subject to change and the debate itself may not follow this exact order:

    • Trump and Biden’s records
    • The Supreme Court
    • The integrity of the election
    • Covid-19
    • Race and violence in US cities
    • The economy

“Stark staring mad”

“Australians not living in Victoria cannot possibly fathom how ‘barking mad this place is’ or how mad its government has become …”

And so what if it is, what then? It’s not as if we are locked up with a psychopathic moonbat moronic low-IQ fool in command. And if 61% are happy with the Premier whose policies have directly led to the deaths of over 700 people, be grateful, you are living in the essence of a democratic society. Majority rule, right? At least he is making the trains run on time even if no one has anywhere to go more than 5km from their homes.

The two places where you don’t try to save money are helicopter pilots and accountants

This is lifted from a post at Powerline on Trump’s taxes.

This retired tax accountant supplies a knowledgeable perspective, as opposed to anything you might read in the co-conspirator Times:

Sure enough, this morning my feed is filled with people who don’t know shit about taxes retweeting the stupid opinions of other morons who also don’t know shit about taxes. This is just as annoying as last week when these same idiots all suddenly became Constitutional Scholars. Or the month before that when they were all experts on use of force laws and police tactics. Or the month before that when they suddenly got their epidemiology degrees from the University of Internet and turned into infectious disease experts.
Which brings us to today, with people freaking out about how Trump allegedly didn’t pay taxes for 10 out of 15 years and how that’s UNFAIR. Assuming that the anonymous tip isn’t total bullshit—and this is the New York Times we’re talking about and they love to just make shit up—and that the information is accurate (which means that whoever leaked it committed a felony, but that’s a whole different discussion)… my answer is so?

Is it plausible that a billionaire paid no taxes for a period of several years? Yep. Totally. See all that stuff I wrote above about the complicated tax code and how it is an accountant’s sacred duty to take advantage of all the stupid laws congress has passed to save their client’s money? Pretty much that. It has happened many times before, and it will happen many times again.
I recall a similar freak out several years ago when it came out that some giant mega-corp (I think it was GE, but I don’t remember) didn’t pay any taxes due to some Obama green energy tax breaks. Only that time the freak out was coming from the right (who hate Obama) and the Bernie Bros (who hate all business). It’s the same kind of thing though. If the laws are on the books, of course companies (and individuals) are going to take advantage of those laws. THAT IS WHY CONGRESS PUT THEM THERE.

Much more at the link. I believe it was Donald Trump who once said that the two places where you don’t try to save money are helicopter pilots and accountants. That is especially true if you are a real estate developer.

How the Dems are trying to steal the election

NYT: 18 Revelations From Trove of Trump Tax Records...
'Can you believe how f*cking stupid the IRS is?'
FLASHBACK: Ripped Obama 20.5% Rate...
Said poor should have to pay to 'be part of game'...
WIRE: National Security Threat...
Biden ad compares to what workers pay...
Sells 'I paid more' stickers... 

There is not a Democrat policy proposal from one end of the election to the other, other than to make it compulsory to wear masks. The New York Times has released a set of the President’s tax returns and that is what they are turning into the central issue. So far as I can tell, there is no suggestion that there was any cheating on PDT’s taxes, only that he used various existing tax laws to minimise the amounts he paid.

These are amongst the various replies with the first where the video above comes from:

Democrats Are LYING About Trump’s Taxes, Push INSANE Theory That He’s A National Security Threat

New York Times’ Trump Tax Return ‘Bombshell’ Is A Joke

The New York Times Recycles Old Reporting To Drop ‘Bombshell’ Trump Tax Return Story

NYT Debunks Three Media Conspiracy Theories With Trump’s Tax Returns.

And there are the various attacks on Amy Coney Barrett bordering on religious bigotry, but so what? Here’s one post defending her nomination: THE HANDWRINGING TALE.

Meanwhile, the American economy is picking up in spite of every effort to spike it, especially via the Chinese virus: Unemployment is Improving Far Faster Than Projected – Unlike After the Great Recession.

And Trump has been nominated for a third Nobel Peace Prize, this nomination coming from Australia! Australian Law Profs Nominate Trump For Third Nobel Prize For ‘Trump Doctrine’.

And do not forget the old political equaliser that goes beyond the lying and the media bias, well beyond: Trump Calls On Justice Department to Investigate Ilhan Omar Over Illegal Ballot Scam. There is a new story on Democrat electoral cheating coming out every day.

The Melbourne Syndrome in pictures

It would be much funnier if it weren’t actually true.

AND THIS FROM TODAY’S FINANCIAL REVIEW: Mask crackdown mad, health experts warn. Their headline, with this text:

Asked why he would require Victorians to wear masks when there is no health purpose, Mr Andrews dismissed the question. “That’s an esoteric debate, isn’t it? Maybe there will be a time when we have the luxury of having those sorts of debates.”

Maybe there will be a time! “Mad” is just the word.

And indeed, Andrew Bolt now specifically asks

Has Daniel Andrews gone mad?

I cannot tell if this is just hyperbolic exaggeration or is meant literally. To me, it could be either, but what if it’s literally true? I keep coming back to The Caine Mutiny and Captain Queeg. The Caine is a US battleship during the war in the Pacific. Captain Queeg is its captain who has gone insane. The leader of the mutiny is Maryk.

Maryk keeps a secret log of Queeg’s eccentric behavior…. Soon afterward, the Caine is caught in a typhoon, an ordeal that sinks three destroyers. At the height of the storm, Queeg’s paralysis of action convinces Maryk that he must relieve the captain of command to prevent the loss of the ship. Willie, as Officer of the Deck, supports the decision. Maryk turns Caine into the wind and rides out the storm.

Fundamentally incorrect government statements

This seems very direct.

Lying is native to politics. If you did not realise it before watching the inquiry into Victorian Labor’s disastrous COVID-19 quarantine scheme, you will now. The Victorian government led by Daniel Andrews is so mired in lies that truth is a distant memory….

We heard the lie by omission, the half-truth, blame-shifting, obfuscation, red herrings, selective memory and collective amnesia. The Premier claims not to know who made the decision to hire private security staff to guard people in hotel quarantine. Labor ministers have followed suit, though most peppered their feigned ignorance with a generous serving of selective amnesia….

On August 8, the Premier told a parliamentary committee: “I think it is fundamentally incorrect to assert that there was (sic) hundreds of ADF staff on offer and somehow someone said no. That’s not, in my judgment, accurate.” However, Sky News and others reported that Prime Minister Scott Morrison personally wrote letters to the Victorian Premier urging him to accept the help of Australian Defence Force personnel in July as the number of COVID cases surged in Victoria. It was reported that the PM sent letters to Andrews on July 4, 6 and 11. In the final correspondence, the PM offered about 1000 defence personnel to work alongside Victoria Police to ensure the virus was contained, affected suburbs were locked down and contact tracing was undertaken….

When Defence Minister Linda Reynolds noted the Victorian government had rejected commonwealth offers of ADF help with hotel quarantine, the Premier framed it as playing politics. He supported the alternative version of events authored by Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp, who said he neither sought nor was offered ADF assistance with hotel quarantine in meetings on March 27-28. However, Defence records showed that from late March the offer stood. The Victorian government authorities rejected at least half a dozen offers of assistance.

And then there is this from Maurice Neuman: Nostalgia won’t protect Snowy white elephant.

Paul Broad, the chief executive officer of Snowy Hydro, has provided a solid rebuttal (The Snowy 2.0 project will pay its way) to an open letter (On every count, Snowy 2.0 is a disaster in the making), published on this page on September 18. The letter’s 37 authors cannot be easily dismissed. All have relevant expertise in energy markets, engineering and the environment.

That said, Broad is adamant that Snowy 2.0 is “underpinned by a strong business case”. He alleges that “critics have run with every falsehood under the sun” and that most arguments are “flimsy” and not warranting a response….

The project’s announcement bears many of the hallmarks of the National Broadband Network, which was a dream brought to life on the back of a drinks coaster. As predicted, it is a technological and commercial white elephant.

While there were no drinks coasters, former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull’s Snowy Hydro 2.0 announcement in 2017 was widely viewed as a cynically timed thought bubble. Like the NBN, it had no business case but was still acclaimed as an “electricity game-changer”. Turnbull boasted, “it will increase the generation of the Snowy Hydro scheme by 50 per cent, adding 2000 megawatts of renewable energy to the national electricity market”. He made no reference to cost. However, Broad later told a Senate estimates hearing that a “very rough, top-level estimate”, was $2bn.

Rough it was. Two years later, a construction contract was let for $5.1bn….

All in all, and without allowing for cost overruns, the final investment for the entire project could well sit at about $14bn or, seven times the original indicative figure….

Whatever the reality, Australians are getting the impression that Snowy Hydro 2.0 is yet another “trust me” project where the business case has been written to reflect the announcement. It will take time for the truth to be known but, sadly, history is not on the government’s side.

The sad part is that we still live in a kind of fantasy theoretical economic environment in which government waste is believed to be good for the economy. It may well be good for those on the receiving end of all this money, but for the rest of us, it is a straightforward loss that keeps us much poorer than we would otherwise have been.