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Thursday, December 24, 2020

Highlights of the News

Donald John Trump is still our president.

West Virginia remains Almost Heaven.

ITEM 1: Fox reported, "Former Rep. Katie Hill, D-Calif., filed a lawsuit Tuesday against her ex-husband and several media outlets for distributing 'nonconsensual porn,' including naked photos of her and a female staffer, which caused a scandal that forced her to resign from Congress last year.

"The lawsuit alleges that Hill's ex-husband Kenneth Heslep and Mail Media Inc., parent of the Daily Mail, and Salem Media Group Inc., which owns RedState, conspired to and distributed intimate images of her without her consent.

"Heslep has previously denied similar allegations after intimate photos of Hill were leaked to the media outlets and rumors swirled that she was in a so-called 'throuple' relationship with Heslep and a female congressional staffer.

"As the scandal unfolded last October, the Daily Mail published one photo of what appeared to be Hill, 33, undressed and holding a bong, and another of her kissing the campaign staffer."

She posed for the "nonconsensual porn."

ITEM 2The Palmieri Report reported, "President Trump officially kept his promise to Americans and has vetoed the National Defense Authorization Act because it doesn’t terminate Section 230."

Section 230 protects social media from libel with the understanding that they would not censor people.

Soo-prize, soo-prize, Sergeant Carter.

ITEM 3: Zero Hedge reported, "Following Pelosi's earlier plea to Republicans to agree to a bill calling for $2,000 stimulus checks which she will put to a vote in the House on Tuesday, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said he would object to a bill boosting stimulus payments for individuals to $2,000, Bloomberg reports citing a person who participated in a private call with GOP House members. Furthermore, the Republican also plans to offer a new Continuing Resolution separating state and foreign aid from the omnibus. And since McCarthy's position will see objection from Dems, we are - as CNBC's Kayla Tausche puts it - 'Back at square one.'

"If the measure fails on Thursday, which it now appears certain to do, Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal will introduce a new bill, called the Cash Act, to be put on the floor Monday. That bill would codify the larger stimulus payments, Pelosi told Democrats in a private call on Wednesday, according to a person on the call.

"Trump’s demand for bigger checks came alongside various complaints about the tens of billions in pork, including hundreds of millions in foreign aid, contained in the $2.3 trillion ($900 billion in Covid-19 relief with $1.4 trillion in government funding) bill, which was passed with big bipartisan support on Monday despite virtually nobody reading the 5,500 + pages of the full legislation."

Less than 10% of the bill Congress passed goes to individual Americans. 

It is a bribe package that rewards donors and foreign countries. They get the gold mine. We get the shaft.

ITEM 4: I wrote about this last night, but I must note that the president pardoned Paul Manafort and others last night. 

Manafort wrote, "Mr. President, my family and I humbly thank you for the Presidential Pardon that you bestowed on me today. Words cannot adequately convey how grateful we are. History will record that your Presidency accomplished more in 4 years than any of your modern-day predecessors. You truly did Make America Great Again."

It was a political prosecution that had nothing to do with the Russian Collusion hoax and everything to do with being allied with the president.

ITEM 5: The New York Post reported, "NY leads nation in population drop, could lose House seat."

The story said, "Some 126,355 people hightailed it out of the Empire State between July 2019 and July 2020, a dip of 0.65%, the preliminary figures show.

"New York has been losing locals since 2016, but the most recent drop was significantly larger than in years past.

"It was also the state with the nation’s biggest population decline, followed by Illinois with a 0.63% dip, Hawaii with 0.61% and West Virginia with 0.58%.

"The estimates are based on the 2010 Census, and the official 2020 Census results will be released next year, along with a new legislative map.

"The once-a-decade national head count determines how the 435 seats in the House of Representatives are divided among the 50 states based on the population changes recorded."

Not all the people moved out of New York.

Cuomo killed about 10,000 of them by putting covid 19 patients in nursing homes.

Maybe that is why others left.

ITEM 6: Bloomberg Law reported, "More than one-third of those who took California’s first online bar exam in October were flagged for possible cheating, based on alerts sent by the test’s software, the state bar said.

"Of the 9,301 people who took the entire exam, 'we are currently reviewing 3,190 applicants that were flagged,' state bar official Tammy Campbell said during a Dec. 4 meeting of the California Bar’s Committee of Bar Examiners, according to a video recording. Test takers were flagged based on a number of rules infractions, including having food or electronic equipment like a cell phone, as well as behavior like gazing off-screen.

"The inquiry, first reported by the ABA Journal, puts test takers flagged by the system at risk of being required to retake the exam, which is typically required before a law school graduate is allowed to work as an attorney in the state. Any review that substantiates widespread cheating also could give critics of bar exams in California and other states further ammunition to promote alternatives like diploma privilege, which allows law school grads to get licensed without taking an exam."

Cheating on a bar exam?

Isn't that practicing law without a license?

ITEM 7: Bloomberg reported, "The worst fiscal crisis in decades is pitting U.S. states against one another over billions in taxes from residents working from home.

"New Jersey and Connecticut on Tuesday joined a legal battle to stop neighboring states from taxing residents who -- due to the pandemic -- have stopped commuting over state lines and are now working remotely. The case, filed by New Hampshire against Massachusetts in October, has drawn more than a dozen friend-of-the-court briefs by states urging the U.S. Supreme Court to take up the challenge."

Now Democrats are poaching each others' taxpayers.

ITEM 8: The New York Post reported, "Christmas Day in South Florida will likely feature unusually low temperatures — along with a chance of falling iguanas, forecasters said."


Forecasters explained in a tweet last January, "Iguanas are cold blooded. They slow down or become immobile when temps drop into the 40s. They may fall from trees, but they are not dead."

Falling iguanas would be the perfect end to this year.

ITEM 9: United Press International reported, "Consumer spending dropped 0.4% in November, the first decline since April as personal income took another hit amid the coronavirus pandemic, the U.S. Commerce Department said Wednesday.

"The department's Bureau of Economic Analysis said personal consumption expenditures for November were $13.04 trillion, down $58.5 billion from the previous month.

"Spending had been growing steadily since May despite the economic crisis and job loss precipitated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

"There was a 1% decline in spending on goods and a 0.2% drop in spending on services, the monthly report said.

"Personal income dropped by $221.8 billion -- or 1.1% -- in November compared to October, which also experienced a 0.6% drop.

"Consumer spending was down 2.4% compared to November 2019, while personal income in the third quarter was down 10.2% compared to the same period in 2019."

Locking down the nation a second time didn't stop covid 19.

But the lockdown stopped the economic recovery.

ITEM 10Just the News reported, "Classified information may be utilized in the probe scrutinizing the origins of the FBI investigation related to the 2016 presidential campaign, according to a presidential order from President Trump.

"U.S. attorney John Durham, who had been conducting the investigation, was named as a special counsel in the probe in October."

He will have no excuse not to indict someone bigger than the summer interns.

ITEM 11Fox News reported, "The city of Detroit is trying a new tack during a year in which it, like many other U.S. cities, saw violent protests and destruction in the streets.

"Detroit has filed a lawsuit against Black Lives Matter activists, alleging a 'civil conspiracy' and claiming the protests in the city 'have repeatedly turned violent, endangering the lives of police and the public,' according to reports.

"The city claims the activists participated in the conspiracy, defamed the mayor and police, and contends that the city should be awarded damages, The Intercept reported.

"The city cites four protests that occurred in the city this year, and alleges that injuries to police officers included 'cracked vertebrae, lacerations, and concussions,' according to the report."

I hope the money people who funded this chaos have to lawyer up.

ITEM 12: The Daily Mail reported, "A New Hampshire woman has been arrested for sending pictures of a mutilated female body and threatening the family of a Michigan election official who refused to certify the results for Joe Biden. 

"Katelyn Jones, 23, is accused of calling Wayne County chairwoman Monica Palmer a 'racist b****' and a 'terrorist' after she refused to confirm the 878,000 votes from Michigan's largest county."

Democrats say call for unity -- or else!

ITEM 13: Augusta Crime reported, "Two people handing out flyers for the Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff campaigns have been arrested for stealing packages from homes in Columbia County.

"Cesar Guerrero and Santina Walker confessed to taking packages Tuesday and Wednesday while performing their job of handing out political flyers for the two Democratic candidates for U.S. Senate, authorities said.

"Deputies were dispatched Wednesday to the area of Chastain Drive in reference to a suspicious situation. A deputy conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle that was possibly involved in a package theft. Investigators responded to the scene and found several packages in the trunk of the vehicle driven by Walker. Known thefts occurred on Millhaven Road, Colonial Road, Paisley Lane and Herrington Drive."


What they can't get by taxes, they get by stealing.

ITEM 14Rick Moran reported, "Senator Ted Cruz sent a letter to President Donald Trump urging him to send both the Iran nuclear agreement and Paris climate accords to the Senate for ratification. Since the Senate won’t agree to advise and consent to either deal, requesting a vote would force Biden into a confrontation and could precipitate a constitutional crisis.

"Biden has promised to recommit the government to adhere to those two deals despite the enormous cost of the Paris climate deal and despite Iran’s rejection of U.N. inspectors and Iran’s public determination to enrich uranium far above the levels allowed in the agreement."

Excellent idea.

Treaties need a majority of two-thirds of the Senate.

ITEM 15: Move over Rose Bowl. The New Mexico Bowl is headed for Texas as well.

The Albuquerque Journal reported, "That’s right, due to the current state guidelines in New Mexico pertaining to COVID-19 cases, Hawaii (4-4) and Houston (3-4) will not play at the bowl’s home since its inception, University Stadium in Albuquerque. Instead, ESPN Events, which owns the bowl, has moved it to Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas, on Thursday.

"Nonetheless, New Mexico Bowl sponsors such as Visit Albuquerque will support the game, advertise the city’s attractiveness as a place to live, work and play and encourage Texans and those watching the game to visit – of course, when things clear up."

Like California, New Mexico screwed itself and elected a Democrat governor.

FINALLY, there will be a Highlights tomorrow. It is not a Sunday.


  1. Merry Christmas to you and yours, Mr. Surber!!!

  2. #6: That is a problem. I tend to look away when I am gathering my thoughts, and I guess other people could do so.

    #7: This one is going to be fun - where was the pay earned, at the company HQ or at the employee's home office? Which state?

    1. #6 Agreed...Is it a test or an interrogation?! How does the ABA online monitoring react to nosepicking, eyerolling, or Toobin-ing? zb

  3. Merry MERRY Christmas to you, the wifely better half, and “all of the little Commissioners” (Pink Panther Strikes Again). Hopefully the people who left DubVee were Democrats disheartened by the state election results. We are perfectly positioned to lead the assault against DC should the need arise. Otherwise, peace, joy, and all that good stuff...

  4. Christmas day highlights! Merry Christmas Don!

  5. Item #9: "Locking down the nation a second time didn't stop covid 19. But the lockdown stopped the economic recovery".
    Wasn't that the point?

    1. Item #9:

      "Locking down the nation a second time didn't stop covid 19.

      "But the lockdown stopped the economic recovery."

      ALL LIES. They rigged a presidential election; what's stopping them from lying about (?):

      "12/23/20 +3,401" Covid deaths, as per

      January 21, 2021 on-out: Gunshot victims and all the rest who really died of anything BUT Covid will now be tallied under the accurate columns, "Gunshot, heart disease, etc."

  6. Merry Christmas, Don. Thanks for your hard work and dedication. I worry for the U.S.A. in 2021.

  7. Merry Christmas, Don! You're my first read every day (except Sunday.

    I have all your books and am looking forward to the next one about this election (although I may be reading it by moonlight in a gulag.)

  8. ITEM 6: If a suspicion of cheating is confirmed, it is incumbent upon the bar examiners to impose a sanction on the test taker; when one signs up for the exam, I believe that he or she is subject to the Rules of Professional Responsibility which demand that one conduct oneself in a manner that demonstrates fitness to practice law. Cheating on a bar exam does just that.
    Wonder if that is what started Andrew Weissman on his road to perdition.
    ITEM 14: And, as a side benefit, it will force Democrats to make a choice -- America First or Iran First.
    I wish you and your family the Merriest of Christmases and the Happiest of New Years, Don. Thank you for all you do.

  9. Item 3 - We keep getting disappointed by the Repubs who claim to be conservative and vote for such a tainted package. When I see this kind of behavior out of a group of Repubs, it exposes why Trump has so much trouble getting things done. President Trump shouldn’t have to veto such dumbass legislation. The Repubs caved. Again. Like they always do. Even someone as stupid as AOC complained about it.

    Why is it so hard to do better? Congress constantly does dumb stuff and looks stupid doing it. Is there anyone left there with a common sense brain?

    1. American Greatness has an article about Republican spinelessness in today’s blog, titled “Will Republicans Kill Democracy?” Here’s an out-quote, “Republicans who chose stability over democracy will not be remembered kindly, if they are remembered at all.”

    2. Tom - you took the words right out of my keyboard.

    3. “Will Republicans Kill Democracy?”

      You folks don't understand national politics! They are doing precisely what corrupt people do. Stop electing incumbents!

      Congress is the heart and soul of the Swamp.

    4. Democracy died in 2008 when TARP was passed against 90% of the people who were dead set against it.

    5. Is there anyone left in Congress who hasn't been bought off?

  10. Item 8: When I was in Belize, iguanas were considered a local delicacy. I declined to eat iguana. We were told that iguanas like to hang out in graveyards because, “Belizians don’t bury their dead very deep.”

  11. Merry Christmas to you and yours, Don. Thank you for sharing your keen insight into the shenanigans and ongoing insanity that passes for news these days. Reading Don Surber every morning (and throughout the day) is part of my daily routine. Viva le Surber!

  12. Item 7 - This is the main reason people leave the blue states - government treats taxpayers and businesses as cows to be milked. Oddly enough, taxpayers and businesses don’t like that!!

  13. 9: Could also be the stolen election. People do vote with their pocketbooks.

  14. 6 - cheating on the bar exam is resume enhancement for becoming democrat politicians.

    14 - I like Cruz’s thinking on this.

    Merry Christmas Don & Lou Ann. You are entitled to take tomorrow off, but we now look forward to additional gifts.

  15. Item 1: The only Daily Mail I'd heard of was British. Didn't know there was one here...

    Item 2: OOOOOOO-RAH!!

    Item 7: "Now Democrats are poaching each others' taxpayers." Ohhhhh, BUMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMer. (CAT FIGHT!! CAT FIGHT!!!)

    ITEM 8: Iguanas are falling for Floridians...not love at first sight.

    Item 9: "Locking down the nation a second time didn't stop covid 19. But the lockdown stopped the economic recovery." All of you whose governors did that to you, you now know who to vote against.

    Item 11: Go, Detroit! Sue them for all they're worth.

    Item 15: "Like California, New Mexico screwed itself and elected a Democrat governor." Back in the late '60s, the Governor was a guy named Dave Cargo. He was given a carved wooden RoadRunner (a bird of the cuckoo line, IIRC) and there was a "disturbance in the populace" because some said "its tail should be "up", and some said, "no, its tail should be down (when it's running). I don't recall, at this late date, whether it was portrayed as walking or running, and I don't remember ever seeing a picture of it. Unfortunately, the left that part out.

    1. I am triggered by your use of the term, "cat fight" and feel it is deeply insensitive. I have contacted HR.

  16. RE: Finally,
    And I will be reading it tomorrow. Merry Christmas Don!

  17. Merry Christmas, Don. I am glad you will be posting tomorrow. Ever since my son became a teen, Christmas has been a day for sleeping in. I will be up early to enjoy my coffee and your opinions! Have a lovely Christmas Eve and a blessed Christmas Day.

  18. Merry Christmas to Surber and all of the Surberettes out there! When some of the daily topics bring me down, the comments lift me up! Great community!

  19. Merry Christmas to all. I'm doing well had a nice series of phone calls from friends and family offering condolences and advice.Going to Christmas eve service tonight. and having Christmas dinner with friends tomorrow. weather's good bit windy, but clear and only 32F this am.
    Gloria's celebrating the birth of Jesus at the old home place this year.
    Thanks for your thoughts and prayes.

    1. Good to hear that DDC. We hope that you and Don both can do as we will and turn the TV off, close the browser, look around you and see that in the here and now, we're doing OK.
      To one and all, have a glorious Christmas.

    2. Glad to hear from you, Doug. Please keep in touch. THINGS WILL GET BETTER!

      And Merry Christmas to you and Don Surber and his family and to everyone else.

  20. Merry Christmas Don.

    Item 11: Does one think good old Coleman Young is rolling in his grave?

  21. 3. Congress puts $600 on the headboard and tells us we should be thankful.

    4. "It was a political prosecution..."

    You misspelled 'persecution'.

    5. The painful ones are the wealthy bailing from the failed states taking their millions of tax dollars with them.

    California's response was to claim expat wealthy are property of the State. How long before NY tries that?

    6. Dishonest lawyers? Where's my shocked face?

    7. When States view people as property.

    There are other districts that charge income tax based on work location (City of St. Louis earnings tax) Be fun to see fallout if SCROTUS decides against the poachers.

    8. Good thing about raining iguanas is they taste just like chicken.

    Christmas iguana, anyone?

    9. You're saying the lockdown was a success then?

    10. He has a perfect excuse for not indicting anyone higher than an intern. He's investigating Democrats.

    In Soviet America...

    11. Smartest thing Detroit has done in a long time.

    13. "What they can't get by stealing, they get by stealing."

    There, fixed it for ya'.

    14. A Biden* promise without a bribe attached is a one pony something, something, you know! The thing!

    I have never regretted my primary vote for Cruz in '16.

    15. I was surprised when NM sent alternate electors to the EC.

    Regrets, much?

  22. Merry Christmas Don, I said a little prayer for you and your family for this holiday season.

  23. Item #6. Why not open book exams? When one takes the exam for a trades license, it's an open book test because there is no way one can memorize each and every rule and regulation pertaining to the current building codes. They even allow calculators scratch paper for the part of the test where math is involved.

  24. ITEM 3 - I'm with President Trump. More stimulus payments for American individuals and small businesses, no pork for the wealthy and foreigners.

    ITEM 5 - Albany is the most corrupt cesspool of any state capital. Over the past 15 years, a comptroller and more than 30 legislators, including the Assembly speaker and Senate majority leader, have gone to prison, while a governor and an attorney general were forced to resign over sex scandals.

    ITEM 6 - This brings to mind a Tom Paxton classic.
    "Humankind has survived some disastrous plagues
    Like locusts and flash floods and flu.
    There's never a moment when we've been secure
    From the ills that our flesh is heir to.
    If it isn't a war, it's a gruesome disease.
    If it isn't disease, then there's war.
    But there's worse still to come
    And I'm asking you please
    How the world's gonna take any more?
    In ten years, we're gonna have one million lawyers,
    One million lawyers, one million lawyers,
    In ten years we're gonna have one million lawyers.
    How much can the poor nation stand?

    ITEM 9 - The last time consumer spending was hampered by money shortfalls, the financial industry responded with easy credit. We know what happened when the issuers of plastic began demanding their due at usurious interest rates.

    ITEM 11 - Many other big cities that are moaning about empty treasuries can follow Detroit's example.

    ITEM 14 - I'm with Ted Cruz here. It's time we followed the constitutional rules on treaties.

    FINALLY - Merry Christmas, Don!

  25. Item 8, iguanas are plant eaters. I know, having lived with them for years while trying to have a little garden. Nasty critters, pooping in people's pools, yards, and anywhere else they take a notion. We love a cold snap to thin them out.

    1. I'll be taking a walk at dawn, sharpened shovel in hand, looking to thin out the iguana population in my neighborhood.
      You left out the digging when listing their destructiveness.
      An invasive species as well.
      I wonder how the curly tails and the Cuban angles will do in a cold snap. Haven't heard of them going comatose.

    2. Cuban angles? Damn spellcheck.
      Cuban anoles.

  26. "Detroit has filed a lawsuit against Black Lives Matter

    This headline confirms other news that said BLM has received $10 billion this year.

    Now I definitely believe that they have indeed collected that much money.

    Now we get to watch the fight for the loot!

  27. Item 8: Falling iguanas would be a good name for a rock band.

    Merry Christmas, all.

    1. The "Airborne Iguanas" gets my vote!

    2. I could never live in a place where lizards roam free or drop from trees.

  28. Don Surber, you were a steadfast, unwavering light in the 1914 year, 2020. Thank you again, and Merry Christmas!

  29. Happy Christmas!

    Thank you, Don, for your excellent blog that filters the news.

    May you have peace and prosperity in 2021.

  30. A merry and blessed Christmas to you and your family, Mr. Surber. Thank you for all you do!

  31. Item 8 - I envy Florida. 5am here in Perth and the temp is 68F. Which feels positively antarctic compared to being inside the house!
    And today's expected maximum is 98. Excess fluid consumption, here I come.
    Merry Christmas to you Don, and all your readers.

  32. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to our esteemed host Don Surber, his lovely wife Lou Ann, and all the Surberites here at the best blog in all of Blogdom!


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