Killing the Vampire

While roaming the world for the syndicated reality program “Inside Edition”, I found myself in the Eastern European country of Romania.  The government there was trying to create tourism off the infamous fictional vampire Dracula.  The Bram Stoker creation is actually based on a real guy; a vicious Medieval warlord named Vlad Tepes who annoyed his neighbors by impaling them. No Vlad Putin jokes, please.

As I drove around the Carpathian Mountains, still primitive but beautiful country, I interviewed a number of folks who actually believe in vampires.  They told me the only way to destroy one is to drive a stake through the creature’s heart.

For some strange reason, that Romanian trip popped into my mind while watching President Biden’s unsettling press conference last week.  I am certain old Joe is not among the undead because he’d be much more alert if he was.

Now, here’s why I bring up the vampire thing.  The progressive movement is so tied into the Biden presidency that if he falls, the radicals do, too.  If the President continues to falter, progressive policies will receive a symbolic stake through the heart.

And that’s the best thing that may come out of Mr. Biden’s tenure.

Here’s why.  Progressives, generally speaking, believe America is a bad place. So they want to change pretty much everything.  Here’s a list.

  • Replace capitalism with socialism where Washington runs the economy and levies draconian (had to use that word) taxation on corporations and affluent citizens.
  • Crush existing immigration laws and open the borders to all.
  • “Reimagine” the criminal justice system so that most people who commit crimes are not punished.
  • Change election laws so even non-citizens can cast a ballot and voter IDs are abolished.
  • Institute a “One World” foreign policy where the USA could not take unilateral action.
  • Ban handguns for US citizens.
  • Ban all protections for the unborn.
  • Institute government-enforced “equity” for minority groups whereby they would get preferential treatment including reparations for slavery.
  • Institute Critical Race Theory teaching in public schools and abolish grades.

There’s more but those are the headlines. So, here’s my question: shouldn’t the progressive movement receive a stake through the heart to end this madness once and for all?

I believe the correct answer is YES!

Again, if Biden and Kamala Harris go down, they are likely to take the radical leftists with them.  Ocasio-Cortez, George Clooney, and Bette Midler are worried. CNN and MSNBC, already on the run, would be finished.

Stakes are being sharpened.  And the bad guys know it.




Meat Loaf Pulled Off Something Few Singers Have

Earlier this week, iconic singer Meat Loaf tragically passed away at the age of 74. Describing the man as a “unique” talent would be a gross understatement. He had a wild name, an enormous presence, a wide range of singing talent, and a knack for performative theatrics that extended to stage and movies.

Of course, he also sold over 65 million copies of a rather famous rock-opera album trilogy, and won a Grammy award for “Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance.”

Not a bad run.

But for me, the thing that stood out the most about the singer was his multi-generational appeal.

Meat Loaf’s rise to stardom began before I was born, and his career was thought to have climaxed in the mid 1970s with his hugely successful album, Bat Out of Hell — a famous collaboration with composer Jim Steinman that spawned the hits, “Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad” and “Paradise by the Dashboard Light”.

Well, it was famous to older people anyway. Up until the early 1990s, when I was in my late teens, there wasn’t much reason for someone my age to know (and therefore appreciate) a whole lot about Meat Loaf. I mean, I think I at least knew who the guy was — probably because I grew up as a couch potato, saw him on The Tonight Show or some other program, and found his name and persona amusingly memorable. But my point is that I knew very little of his past fame, whether it be from albums or his role as Eddie in The Rocky Horror Picture Show, a film I knew only for its outlandish poster.

That all changed in 1993 when the absolutely epic song, “I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That)” hit radio stations like a meaty ton of bricks. And of course, there was that feature-film style video that received seemingly endless rotation on MTV, and helped propel the song to the very top of the charts.

A whole new generation of music fans suddenly knew of Mr. Loaf, and they very much dug his new collaboration with Jim Steinman.

In fact, they more than dug it. They adopted that first single off the Bat Out of Hell II: Back into Hell album as an anthem of the era. I was in college at the time, and nearly everyone I knew owned the CD (thanks in large part to Columbia House and BMG memberships), and knew the song’s infectious lyrics by heart. By the time all was said and done, it had reached number one in 28 countries.

Granted, I don’t think many of those listeners ever quite figured out what it was that Meat Loaf wouldn’t do for love, but few seemed bothered by that. The rock-opera was back… at least for a little while. And it even included an elaborate, musical-style tour.

I’m sure a lot of classic rock purists, who were there for the initial Bat Out of Hell ride, bristled at all the johnny-come-lately Meat Loaf fans, but I’m guessing the singer himself had no complaints. He pulled off something relatively few music acts have — a bonafide rock resurrection that drew in a brand new, youthful and energetic fan-base. And he was rewarded handsomely for it.

Many of those newbies, like me, were then compelled to go back and check out (and come to appreciate) the performer’s earlier work.

Two more singles were released off of Bat Out of Hell II: “Rock and Roll Dreams Come Through” and “Objects in the Rear View Mirror May Appear Closer Than They Are“, the latter of which is a really strong, metaphor-heavy tune (with an extraordinarily long name).

But they didn’t enjoy nearly the popularity nor emotional attachment of the first, which still holds a special place in the hearts of lots of folks my age. The evidence of that endearment popped up all over my social media feeds in reaction to the news of Meat Loaf’s passing.

13 years later, Meat Loaf and Jim Steinman went for a three-peat with Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose. It didn’t find much traction, but that’s okay. You can’t win ‘em all.

As Meat Loaf himself famously said, “Two out of three ain’t bad.” And if you ask me, wooing two generations of listeners is a pretty great legacy for a singer to have.

RIP Meat Loaf. I enjoyed your ride.

 


Sean Coleman is back in John A. Daly’s upcoming thriller novel, “Restitution.” Click here to pre-order.




Voter ID Requirements Make Sense

Attention readers: Dennis Prager is off this week. Please enjoy the following column by Terence P. Jeffrey.

A young man who looks like a teenager walks into a liquor store and pulls a bottle of cheap whiskey off a shelf.

He puts it down at the checkout counter and pulls out his wallet.

The clerk at the counter looks at him skeptically. “Can I see your ID?” he asks.

“Yes,” says the young man, who instantly takes his driver’s license out of his wallet and hands it to the clerk.

The driver’s license indicates to the clerk that the customer in front of him had turned 21 two months ago. He sells him the cheap whiskey.

Then another young man walks into the store. He grabs a bottle of very expensive champagne and puts it on the counter.

Once again, the clerk asks the young man if he has an ID.

“No,” says the young man.

“Then I can’t sell you this champagne,” says the clerk.

“You have got to be kidding me,” says the young man. “I am 22 years old.”

“Then prove it,” says the clerk.

“I left my driver’s license at home,” says the young man.

“Then go get it,” says the clerk.

“No, I’ll go buy my champagne somewhere else,” says the young man, who leaves the store in disgust.

This second hypothetical young man, however, was only 19, which made him old enough to vote but not old enough to buy champagne.

If it were up to the Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives, neither of these young men — or anyone else — would need to show an ID to vote.

Last March, 220 of the 221 Democrats in the House — but not one Republican — voted to pass the “For the People Act.”

The introduction to the bill claimed it had the following purpose: “To expand Americans’ access to the ballot box, reduce the influence of big money in politics, strengthen ethics rules for public servants, and implement other anti-corruption measures for the purpose of fortifying our democracy, and for other purposes.”

“Congress also finds that States and localities have eroded access to the right to vote through restrictions on the right to vote including excessively onerous voter identification requirements,” said the bill.

One section of the bill carried this title: “Permitting use of sworn written statement to meet identification requirements for voting.”

“Except as provided in subsection (c),” it says, “if a State has in effect a requirement that an individual present identification as a condition of receiving and casting a ballot in an election for Federal office, the State shall permit the individual to meet the requirement — (A) in the case of an individual who desires to vote in person, by presenting the appropriate State or local election official with a sworn written statement, signed by the individual under penalty of perjury, attesting to the individual’s identity and attesting that the individual is eligible to vote in the election; or (B) in the case of an individual who desires to vote by mail, by submitting with the ballot the statement described in subparagraph (A).”

“The Commission,” the bill said, “shall develop a pre-printed version of the statement described in paragraph (1)(A) which includes a blank space for an individual to provide a name and signature for use by election officials in States which are subject to paragraph (1).”

So, if this bill were to become law, a person could simply sign a pre-printed government form and drop a ballot in a mailbox without presenting anyone with an identification.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minnesota) has offered a slightly stricter bill in the Senate. It is called the “Freedom to Vote Act.”

One part of this bill is headlined: “Voter Identification and Allowable Alternatives.” It says in part: “If a State or local jurisdiction has a voter identification requirement, the State or local jurisdiction — (A) shall treat any applicable identifying document as meeting such voter identification requirement.”

“The term ‘applicable identifying document’ means, with respect to any individual, any document issued to such individual containing the individual’s name,” it says.

It then stipulates that this document can only have expired within the past four years. “The term ‘applicable identifying documents,'” says the bill, “shall include any of the following (so long as that document has not expired or, if expired, expired no earlier than four years before the date of presentation).”

Some of the “applicable identifying documents” then listed in the bill are completely reasonable: “A driver’s license or an identification card issued by a State, the Federal Government, or a State or federally recognized Tribal government.”

Some are more dubious: “A bank card or debit card.”

So, if this bill became law, a debit card that expired in 2021 would be a valid identification for someone voting in 2024.

It is not unreasonable in the 21st century to require people who want to vote to demonstrate that they are legally eligible to do so by presenting a valid form of identification.

Terence P. Jeffrey is the editor-in-chief of CNSnews.com. To find out more about him, visit the Creators Syndicate webpage at www.creators.com.

COPYRIGHT 2022 CREATORS.COM

Last Updated: Monday, Jan 17, 2022 19:16:11 -0800




Call Him Mr. Blue

Boomers may remember a song by the Fleetwoods called “Mr. Blue.”  It hit number one in 1959.  If they do a remake, President Biden should demand royalties because he is that guy: the blue man without the group.  The blue state commander.  And if he’s not feeling blue himself, he should be.  Because nothing is going right for Mr. Blue.

Let’s start with the dog he brought to the White House.  Almost immediately, the pooch started biting Secret Service agents.  An eviction notice went out, and Major was deported to Delaware.

Simultaneously, Joe Biden decided not to enforce immigration law at the border so millions of people are illegally crossing, most untested for Covid.  How is this a good thing for the country, Mr. Blue?  No answer has been forthcoming.

In conjunction with the open border came presidential attacks on the oil and gas industry in the name of climate change. Twelve months later, inflation has climbed 10 percent because energy prices surged. Mr. Blue said last week he is making progress solving the problem? But how?

No one knows.

Then came the cut and run from Afghanistan.  Then another Covid surge. Then a proposed new election law that discouraged IDs for voters.  But why?  We did get an answer to that question.  IDs are racist.

Oh.

Then Mr. Blue went down in flames on the two trillion dollar “Build Back Better” deal. No one could quite figure out where all the tax money would actually go.  Joe didn’t know just as he doesn’t know how to contain Omicron.  He again says he’s making progress.  Maybe inflation will catch Omicron.

I could go on singing the blues and directing the notes towards Mr. Blue who is still waiting for Kamala Harris’ report on the “root causes” of border jumping. Maybe I can help here.

Mr. President and Ms. Vice President: the root cause of illegal border crossings is that the USA is a better country than Honduras.  You can fill in the names of other countries around the world to strengthen the point.

So let’s wrap this up with a new poll that may make Joe Biden even bluer.  A Quinnipiac survey says just a third of the country believes he is doing a good job as president.  The rumor is many of the 33 percent are from Honduras.

As President Blue begins his second year in office the outlook for his presidency is dubious, to be kind.  In about ten months a red wave may obliterate the blue power structure in place now.  Those midterms are coming up fast and color me skeptical about Joe Biden’s future.

Next November it might very well be black and blue for the big guy.




Biden Had One Job…

Next week will mark the one-year anniversary of Joe Biden being sworn into office, and any fair analysis of his first-year job performance would have to acknowledge that his failures greatly outnumber (and outweigh) his successes.

Two of his biggest failures — Afghanistan and the crisis at the Mexican border — were almost entirely of his own making. If Biden had just listened to his military advisors on the first issue, and kept in place the Trump-era border laws on the second, his presidential legacy would be off to a much better start. Not to mention, there’s be far less human suffering going on in Afghanistan.

Less applicable directly to Biden is the ongoing COVID-19 health crisis, at least when it comes to the infection, hospitalization, and death numbers. Yes, the president promised he’d “shut down” the virus, and therefore took political ownership of its rebound and incremental spread. That was a mistake, though I think he had lots of good reasons to be optimistic at the time; it was new variants and political and ideological resistance to the vaccines that sent things back in the wrong direction.

As I said during the previous administration, most mitigation and containment strategies during a health crisis should be formulated and implemented at lower levels of government, while the federal government’s focus should be on providing resources and strong, clear public messaging.

In this arena, Biden had a pretty low bar to clear. While the vaccines were developed under his predecessor (and thankfully so), that same predecessor publicly downplayed the seriousness of the virus for a year, publicly blew off his own administration’s health recommendations, called for blue-state uprisings, threw super-spreader events (resulting in his own serious infection), pushed “miracle” remedies that were neither miracles nor remedies, and turned COVID pressers into outrageous carnival acts.

But even with that low bar, Biden has managed to drop the ball. Federal guidance and messaging is still a mess (often inconsistent and lagging well behind the changing science), and promises like increased rapid-testing capabilities aren’t being fulfilled — at least not in a timely manner.

And of course, there are those monster spending initiatives that Biden has spent an extraordinary amount of time on, while the national debt skyrockets, and Americans struggle with inflation and half-empty store shelves.

In other words, things haven’t gone well.

What’s politically tragic about all of this is that, despite the many challenges our country faced prior to him taking office, Biden really only got elected to fulfill just one job: not being Donald Trump.

By that, I mean a perceived return to normalcy, competency, and respectfulness — things Biden actively campaigned on, and that most Americans deeply longed for after years of Trump, seemingly every day, taking a blow-torch to anything and everything that got in the way of his egotistical sense of self-worth.

Biden addressed this in his inaugural speech:

“We can join forces, stop the shouting and lower the temperature. For without unity there is no peace, only bitterness and fury. No progress, only exhausting outrage. No nation, only a state of chaos. This is our historic moment of crisis and challenge, and unity is the path forward. And we must meet this moment as the United States of America. If we do that, I guarantee you we will not fail. We have never ever, ever, failed in America when we’ve acted together.”

Though there wasn’t much evidence of Biden being a uniter, he was well positioned to become one as president. Millions of Americans who voted for him absolutely wanted that lower temperature he talked about, and with his often diplomatic rhetoric during the campaign, and razor-thin party margins in congress, he could have absolutely delivered it (or at least begun to).

But a year into his presidency, it’s become pretty clear that he has chosen a different route.

Earlier this week, in a speech in Georgia, President Biden framed those who disagree with Democratic proposals on voting rights this way:

“So, I ask every elected official in America: How do you want to be remembered? At consequential moments in history, they present a choice: Do you want to be on the side of Dr. King or George Wallace? Do you want to be on the side of John Lewis or Bull Connor? Do you want to be on the side of Abraham Lincoln or Jefferson Davis?”

The rhetoric was shocking, but unfortunately not surprising. After all, it was just a few months ago that Biden shamelessly labeled relatively mundane voter restrictions as “Jim Crow 2.0″. Similarly, in this week’s speech, much of what Biden likened to some of the most vile examples of racism and segregation in U.S. history are proposals to repeal election laws that were put in place specifically for facilitating pandemic-era voting. In other words, if you support a return to the status quo of about 15 months ago, you’re on the side of George Wallace, Bull Connor, and Jefferson Davis.

Granted, some states are going a bit further, like moving toward requiring identification to vote. It’s perfectly fine to oppose voter ID (though I don’t), but when you make the claim that something like voter ID is profoundly racist, you should probably first consider that the vast majority of black voters actually support it.

Regardless, this is not a lowering of the temperature.

It’s really quite something that we’ve gone from “unity is the path forward” to essentially, “You’re an evil racist if you don’t agree with me” in just a year’s time. And unfortunately, with few political wins to brag of, and the midterm elections coming up (which aren’t looking good for Democrats), such needlessly polarizing rhetoric will probably become more common from Biden and the rest of the Democratic party as they desperately search for a political foothold.

Biden was in the unique and highly favorable position of having just one job as president, and unfortunately for the country, he has failed at it.

 


Sean Coleman is back in John A. Daly’s upcoming thriller novel, “Restitution.” Click here to pre-order.