My Favorite Show Last Night

So I’ve repeatedly called the Trump presidency “the greatest show on earth.” Honestly, it really is.  I watched the President’s address.  My only objection was having to hear one or two minutes of Shep Smith yammering in the background before the broadcast.  But that faded out of my mind right away.  One of the first things that struck me was that President Trump was having a good time going through the ritual.  He shook hands with Pence and Ryan more than once before he got started.  He always added something at the end of a sentence to intensify or personalize what he was reading off the teleprompter.  He applauded all of his guests very vigorously and he seemed at certain points to be speaking directly to the Democratic Congress as if to chastise them for their lack of enthusiasm about undeniably patriotic and sympathetic topics.  At one point, his expression and his hand gestures seemed to be saying to the Dems, “Come on applaud!”  The news said it was one of the longer SOTU addresses but honestly it seems to go quickly for me.  And I’m not just comparing it to the torturous Obama addresses.  Even W was too long for my tastes.  Probably because it didn’t entertain.  Trump was fun to watch.  The hand gestures, his claims to non-partisan motives and the general appeal to a patriotic agenda were highly effective.  I especially enjoyed his rhetorical shot at the NFL Anthem Kneelers right before the Super Bowl.  Masterfully done.  And, of course there was the kill shot, “young Americans have dreams too.”  Gold, Jerry, gold.

I’m sure there were some right wingers who were upset about the 1.8 million dreamers being brought up as a pillar of Trump’s four part plan on immigration but honestly, there isn’t a prayer in the world of Cryin’ Chuck accepting the wall and all the rest of the good stuff Trump loaded into his plan. I look at it as a poisoned pill that the Dems will refuse to touch.  What other choice will Trump have than to go to the American people and tell them to give him more Republicans in November to get his job done correctly.  I’m guessing a few years ago I would have been one of those complaining about this offer.  But I have learned my lesson.  Ann Coulter was right, “In Trump We Trust.”

Some of the other facets of the experience were the cutaways to people in the audience. Pelosi was the most consistent.  Her expression seemed to be saying, “That egg salad sandwich I just ate must have gone bad.”  Honestly she looked like she had to throw up but was gritting her teeth to stop it.  Schumer was draped over his chair like it was a recliner.  He was just sitting there taking it all in.  Some members of the Congressional Black Caucus looked enraged, especially when he talked about historically low black unemployment.  One of the highlights was when Trump mentioned the presence in the audience of Congressman Steve Scalise, recovered from the gunshot wounds he received at the hands of a crazed Democratic supporter last year.  That was a feel good moment that Trump seemed especially to relish.  First Lady, Melania Trump was in the gallery with the guests and looked typically dignified and lovely.  I read this morning that CNN claimed that Melania wore white as a protest against her husband’s alleged dalliance with a porn star, although why white would be an effective protest color is beyond my meager understanding.  Honestly, these people really have lost what little minds they had.  Several of the guests were associated with MS-13 gang related violence.  There were the four parents of two murdered Long Island teenage girls and an Hispanic law enforcement officer who ignored death threats to lock up a large number of these gang members.  These were highly emotional moments that made a deep impact.  However I believe the most charged moment came when Trump said that American heroes lived not only in the past but also today and the Republican audience started chanting USA, USA, USA.  At that point Democratic Representative  Luis Gutierrez literally got up and walked out of the assembly.  Good times, good times.  So what else could you ask for?  Well, actually, if you remember my recent “Trump vs SOTU” spoof, I included Trump insulting his enemies and having the FBI “Secret Society” members frog-marched out of the House of Representatives in the middle of the address and hauled off to jail.  Well, sure that would have been cool.  But you can’t expect reality to be as cool as my imagination.  But, then again, this is Trump so maybe he’s just saving something for next January.

Check Up on the Trump Popularity Poll

Wow! Who’da thunk it! 30% of my patrons (so far!) say they don’t like the God Emperor! Well at least it proves it’s not an echo chamber. Hey I’d love to hear from some of the 30%. Is this site at all to your liking? I couldn’t imagine it to be so but I’m interested to hear about it.

Option Votes
His Court Appointments. 3
His Tax Bill. 0
His Trade Policies. 0
His Foreign Policy. 0
His Treatment of the Press. 2
His Attitude. 0
Other (Specify in Comments) 0
Nothing. I Don’t Like Him at All. 3
Other 2


The Camera Store Reviews the Sony A9 Camera

The Camera Store up in Calgary Alberta, Canada does a lot of good reviews of Sony equipment. Chris concentrates on the photo side and Jordan addresses the video aspects of each camera.  They’ve been fairly enthusiastic Sony users without succumbing to fanboy-like blindness to the shortcomings of mirrorless cameras in general and Sony in particular.

This review is fairly late in the game for the A9 but I think time has given them a little perspective on the camera and I think that is why they have nailed the real significance of the A9. They realized that the true niche that the A9 fills is the perfect wedding camera.  The silent shutter, excellent autofocus, fast sensor readout and 20 frames a second guarantees that the perfect shot of the bouquet toss or the kiss or the toast won’t be missed.

And waiting until this late date allowed them to compare the A7R III to the A9 and see when the A7R III provides a cheaper but adequate option and where it doesn’t. It’s a long video (about an hour) but it’s pretty good.

Some of the highpoints is the recognition that the fast sensor read of the A9 effectively eliminates rolling shutter problems whereas the A7R III cannot. Offsetting this advantage is the lack of good video options in the A9.  This is attributed to the soon to be announced A7S III or A9S options.  And finally there is a discussion of how the use of any Sony e-mount camera as a sports or wildlife camera is handicapped by the lack of native long telephoto lenses.  This lack may soon be corrected.  Nevertheless it explains why the A9 hasn’t managed to convert large numbers of Nikon and Canon sports shooters yet.

Very interesting discussion.


Trump vs. The State of the Union – Part 3

Trump vs. The State of the Union – Part 1

Trump vs. The State of the Union – Part 2

(Earlier story installments at links)

Dramatis Personae:

Toffee Bredwell – An upper class British journalist from the BBC (TB)

Newt Gingrich (NG)

President Trump (PT)


Scene 1: US Capitol Building, 9:30 pm, following an interruption in the State of the Union Address


TB – Good evening again everyone and welcome back to the BBC coverage of the American Presidential State of the Union Address.  I’m your reporter Toffee Bredwell and we continue to have with us former Speaker of the American House of Representatives, the Honorable Newt Gingrich.

NG – Thanks Toffee.

TB – I’d like to start by apologizing for my unprofessional weakness a little while ago.  I reacted like some sort of Victorian heroine suffering a case of the “vapours” upon hearing of an impropriety.  My only defense is my sheltered public-school upbringing.  I am unused to such frank discussion of sexual impropriety by a national leader on television.

NG – Well Toffee, welcome to America, post Bill Clinton.  We do let it all hang out as the kids say,

TB – Quite.  And so, to bring our viewers up to date, President Trump followed up his introductory comments by instructing the various law enforcement personnel at his disposal to arrest, handcuff and escort away or as he so colorfully expressed it “frog march” the indicted FBI members in the audience to some unspecified area of confinement.

NG – Toffee, you have a way with words.

TB – Thank you Mr. Speaker, I do love my work.  Newt, what in the world can we expect from the conclusion of President Trump’s address?  Honestly, I’m completely at a loss as to what he can say that won’t seem overshadowed by the unprecedented actions we’ve just witnessed.

NG – Well Toffee, if we’ve learned anything from tonight’s events is that you should never assume anything when it involves Donald Trump.  He is entirely unconventional.

TB – Indeed.  Do you foresee many of the Congressional audience remaining for this second act?

NG – Well, other than those with guilty consciences I can’t imagine anyone with a ringside seat leaving this venue.  The old phrase, “the greatest show on earth” comes to mind.  There is something fascinating watching a force of nature at work.

TB – Well, we’ll have to wait for the finale to continue this discussion because I believe President Trump is resuming his place at the rostrum.

(scene shifts to President Trump back at the rostrum)

PT – I’m going to dispense with some of the formalities.  You’re phonies and liars and losers.  The American people don’t expect me to suck up to the likes of you.  But enough pleasantries.  The reason for this address is for me to report to the Congress.  The relevant passage in the Constitution is and I quote “He shall from time to time give to Congress information of the State of the Union and recommend to their Consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient.” Unquote.

So, here’s my information on the State of the Union.  The Union no longer exists.  It’s a disunion.  And until I came along, the leftist deviant part was killing and devouring the normal part.  Very recently I’ve been able to slow the damage and put a little hurt on the deviants but it’s just a start.  To restore the country to health I’m going to have to take a chainsaw to the parasite that’s killing our country.  The first step in the process is decapitating the Swamp Beast.  Currently that’s the Justice Department, especially the FBI.  I intend to fire all the pod people who have infiltrated the Bureau and replace them with human beings.  That should start the healing.  Then I’m going to drain the rest of the swamp.  We’ve made a good start over at the EPA and we intend to continue right along until the housing prices in Northern Virginia reach West Virginia levels.  On the political front I expect the midterms won’t turn out the way you think.  We’ll keep the House and we’ll expand our majority in the Senate.  With this situation I intend to increase my appointments to federal judgeships until I can put an end to the judicial meddling that we’ve seen for the last year.  I intend to appoint at least two more Supreme Court judges in my first term.  That’s right SCOTUS you know who I mean.  In my second term who knows?  We’ll play it by ear.

As far as legislation, I expect Congress to craft legislation to shut down immigration, restore religious freedom, undo unconstitutional overreach with respect to surveillance and so-called gay marriage and end affirmative action.  Between those actions we can stabilize this country and make it a place to be proud of again.  So, in conclusion we’ve got a lot of work to do.  Shut up and get to work.  Trump out.

(returning to the broadcast studio)

TB – Well Mr. Speaker, what do you make of that?

NG – I’d call it marching orders.  This President has an agenda and a plan of action.  It’s about time.

TB – Were you surprised at the lack of empathy or new programs for the underprivileged?

NG – You mean virtue signaling.  No.  Trump is a leader, not a cheerleader.  I’m just surprised he didn’t wade into the audience with a cat-o-nine-tails.

TB – Well there you have it ladies and gentlemen, the first State of the Union address by American President Donald J. Trump.  It was a ghastly spectacle but at the same time surprisingly energizing.  I warrant that in the months and years ahead we’ll look back at this address as the beginning of historic change in this former British colony.

NG – Toffee, you’ve got to let that go.

TB – Quite.

Trump vs. The State of the Union – Part 2

Trump vs. The State of the Union – Part 1  Note: this is a link to the first installment of this story.


Dramatis Personae:

President Trump (PT)

Sargeant at Arms (SAA)

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (PR)

Toffee Bredwell – An upper class British journalist from the BBC (TB)

Newt Gingrich (NG)

Melania Trump (MT)


Scene 1: US Capitol Building, 8:45 pm, directly before the State of the Union Address


TB – Good evening everyone and welcome to the BBC coverage of the American Presidential State of the Union Address.  I’m your reporter Toffee Bredwell and with me here is former Speaker of the American House of Representatives, the Honorable Newton Gingrich.  Welcome Mr. Speaker or may I call you Newt?

NG – Certainly Toffee, all my friends call me Newt.

TB – Thanks.  Now as a former Speaker of the House you are intimately familiar with the protocol, let’s call it the nuts and bolts of this event.  Can you share a little insight with our listeners about how this evening will progress?

NG – Well, normally the members of the administration and the Supreme Court will be announced by the Deputy Sergeant at Arms and when The President arrives at the Chamber door the Sergeant at Arms announces him to the Speaker.  This is followed by a long walk filled with cheers and handshaking and embraces and when the President reaches the Rostrum the Speaker announces him to the Congress and after another lengthy round of applause the President begins his address.  And during the address depending on the particular subject and the party of each of the attendees there could be applause, stony silence or recently even some booing.  In fact, during one of then President Obama’s addresses, a Congressman shouted out “You lie!”

TB – Oh dear, how embarrassing.  Do you expect we’ll experience any such breaches of civility tonight?

NG – Well Toffee, unless I miss my guess, I think we might see something a little more exciting tonight.  Let’s just hope there won’t be any fisticuffs.

TB – Quite.  So, I can see that the Sergeant at Arms is positioning himself so let’s shift over to the floor microphone.

SAA – Mister Speaker, the President of the United States!

TB – Well Mr. Speaker, you weren’t exaggerating.  What a terrific up swelling of applause and ovation for this President.  These congresspersons certainly love this President.

NG – Oh, far from it, Toffee.  Most of these people despise Donald Trump but he’s just initiated a gigantic uptick in economic growth.  Something that hasn’t been seen since Ronald Reagan.  As long as he’s the stronger horse they’ll applaud.  If things turn sour the knives will quickly come out.

TB – Ah, it’s good to see politics are the same everywhere.  Well, it looks like Speaker Ryan is about to introduce the President to Congress.  Let’s go to the Rostrum microphone and we’ll return after the address to review the high points.

PR – Members of Congress, I have the high privilege and distinct honor of presenting to you the President of the United States.

(Long and loud applause.)

PT – Thank you Mr. Speaker.  Thank you, Paul.  It feels strange to be thanking you Paul.  Up until the tax overhaul bill I was ready to write you off as a total loss.  I was going to have you primaried by some kind of radical and who knows maybe you wouldn’t have made it.  But now I’m almost fond of you.  You’re still a spineless weasel but you’re my spineless weasel, so you’ve got that going for you which is nice.  And Mitch McConnell, what can I say?  You’re like some kind of petrified fossil that exists outside of the world we live in.  It doesn’t seem possible that anything as weird as you could still exist but you do.  If we could replace you with an animatronic character like a talking walrus or porcupine I believe it would increase our popularity with the voters but anyway I can’t be too mad at you either because of the tax bill.

Now, you Democrats are a different story.  You all are without a doubt the lowest form of pond scum to ever successfully masquerade as human beings.  Every time I think you’ve hit the ethical bottom you somehow dig a little deeper and go even lower.  Let’s take for instance Dick Durbin.  His lying double-crossing behavior at the DACA meeting has convinced me that if I saw Dick Durbin and a Great White Shark in the waters off of Mar a Lago I’d immediately warn … the shark!  And don’t get me started on Pelosi and Schumer.  The way people are leaving California and New York, pretty soon their own votes will be sufficient to guarantee their re-elections.  That’s right Cryin’ Chuck, the Statue of Liberty is crying over your lousy party’s inept governing of both the City and State of New York.

But it’s not all bad, I want to congratulate Al Franken for striking out for women’s rights.  He harassed enough women to ensure that a woman would replace him.  Quite a tribute.  And I’d also like to congratulate Maxine Waters for being so crazy that she now makes Rosie O’Donnell seem sane in comparison.  When Maxine said she wasn’t a Millennial but used to be I think she meant that she was born in 1000 AD.  That would explain her looks and the fact that she mostly speaks gibberish.  Back then English really hadn’t been invented yet so everyone sounded like she does.  And I know I shouldn’t make fun of a woman’s looks but honestly Maxine is so ugly she makes Pelosi and Hillary look decent by comparison.

And I’d like to thank the press for being so dishonest.  By lying at every turn you’ve made my job so much easier.  At this point I can almost guarantee that anything I say will be disputed by you folks in such ridiculous terms that even the least intelligent person will be able to tell you’re lying.  You’ve become an exaggerated parody of yourselves.  Well done and congratulations for ensuring the long tem demise of your own jobs.

And I’d like to thank all those federal judges both at the Circuit and Supreme Court level who keep usurping the constitutional power of elected officials.  You only make it easier for me to get the electorate to understand why I need to replace as many of you as I possibly can.

I’m going to take a short break while the Secret Service frog marches the Secret Society of Comey, McCabe, Strozk and Mueller down the center aisle on their way to the hoosegow but before I do I’d just like to give a shout out to one of our guests in the gallery.  I’d like to  welcome Miss Stormy Daniels coming and for confirming that I have not had sex with her.  But if I had she knows it would be the best sex she’s ever had and that my hands are ample and highly capable.

MT – Kurba!

PT – And Melania welcomes you too.  Trump out.

(Returning to the BBC broadcast location)

NG – Hello and welcome back BBC listeners.  This is former Speaker Newt Gingrich again.  Unfortunately, Toffie Bredwell has passed out.  Apparently kurba is Slovenian for whore and that was just too much for Toffie.  Stay tuned and I’m sure he’ll revive before the President continues on with the substantive portion of his speech.  But first a word from our sponsor.


Trump vs. The State of the Union – Part 3



Trump vs. The State of the Union – Part 1

Scene1: White House West Wing, 8am, President Trump (PT) calling for Vice President Pence (VPP)

PT – Mike.  Mike.  Mike!!!  Where the hell are you Pence.

VPP –  Right here Mr. President.  I was on the phone with Ryan and McConnell.  They wanted a copy of your speech to help coordinate the standing ovations.

PT – Tell’em to forget about that bull.  I don’t want them cheering.  Tell them to keep their seats and keep quiet.

VPP – Oh no.  What are you planning Mr. President?

PT – I plan on using the speech to wake some people up and put some rats on notice.

VPP – Sir, the State of the Union speech is intended to report to the people on where we are as a nation.

PT – Well Mike, despite the fact that the economy is starting to come to life do you really think there is any reason for standing ovations?  I’m going to tell them the truth.  I’m going to talk about the FBI and the Justice Department and how they’re being run like the KGB with crooked operations targeting Americans because of who they are and not what they’ve done.  I’m gonna talk about Lisa Page and Peter Strzok.  America will love what the FBI is up to on their dime.  I’m gonna talk about McCabe and Mueller and Comey and the “Secret Society” they cooked up against me.  I’m gonna make their hair curl.

VPP – Oh good grief.  Mr. President, I’m asking you to reconsider.  You’re going to scare the American people.  We have the midterms coming up and we can’t have the electorate thinking of us as the crazy party.

PT – Look Pence, you’re gonna have to man up or I’ll have to say you have the flu and couldn’t come.  Besides this is gonna be great.  The people are gonna get this 100%.  You’ve gotta remember they’re used to seeing bureaucrats shake down citizens.  They’ll rally to me when I give them the details of the plot.

VPP – Sorry Mr. President.  I’ll do my best to keep on my game face.

PT – That’s the stuff.  Besides once Cryin’ Chuck begins weeping you won’t be able to stop laughing.  It’s that funny.  Anyway, get Sessions down here.  I was thinking that it might be fun to have the Secret Society rounded up and perp walked right during the middle of the State of the Union address.  I want to see if he can arrange that on queue from me at the podium.  Do you think it would be undignified if I had the Marine Corp Band play “Nananana Hey Hey Hey Goodbye” by Steam during their exit?

VPP – No sir, not for you.  In fact, now that I’ve heard about it, I guess even I’d be disappointed if you didn’t play it.  But to tell you the truth, now that I think about it, what about that Linda Rondstadt song that goes “You’re no good, you’re no good, you’re no good, baby you’re no good, I’m gonna say it again!”

PT – No you’re not gonna say it again.  No I prefer Steam.  It’s a classic.

VPP – As you wish sir.

PT – Exactly.

Trump vs. The State of the Union – Part 2

American Greatness – Pick of the Day – VDH’s – Will Unfinished Train Overpasses Become California’s Stonehenge?

If you need a good shot of shadenfreude read this article by Victor Davis Hanson.  Seriously, the loons in California are about to hit a very hard wall.  With any luck Trump can put a stake through the heart of their dreams by refusing to fund these monstrosities.

Will Unfinished Train Overpasses Become California’s Stonehenge?

The Great American Hero of the American Century

Some historians have dubbed the 20th Century, “The American Century” because of the dominance of its military, industrial, financial and cultural power.  Assuming that the 21st Century will be a muddled mess, it may be that history will declare the 20th century to have been the golden age of the United States of America.  So, barring the God Emperor restoring us to our former dominance it looks possible that the 20th century will be remembered as our high point.  I was thinking about who can be considered the greatest and most representative fictional American hero of the 20th Century?  If this were Ancient Greece or Rome we would look to epic poetry.  For Modern European countries we might look to novels, plays or possibly Grand Opera.  In addition to these, for Twentieth Century America we also have to consider several newer arts.  Motion pictures and comic books appeared during that time period.  Several interesting candidates come to my mind from some of my favorite stories.  From comic books there are obviously Superman and Batman.  Movie characters that I can think of are Sam Spade from the “Maltese Falcon” and Peter Warren from “It Happened One Night.”  Both characters reflect the rugged independence and confidence that typify the self-image of American men from the time period.  There are, surely, another dozen well-known characters from American books and movies of last century that represent the qualities that American men recognize as the archetype.  I’ll let the reader add some names to the list.  But there is another artform that blossomed in the 20th Century, animation or cartoons.  It is from this artform that I have selected the quintessential 20th Century American Hero, Bugs Bunny.

Some may say that my roots in New York City have irrationally biased me in favor of this wisecracking lagomorph who sounds like he should be selling newspapers in Times Square or hot dogs at Yankee Stadium.  But I’m willing to provide a rational accounting.  As I mentioned above, the characteristics of the American male (up until the snowflake generation) were self-confidence, optimism, independence, competitiveness, pride, egalitarianism, ingenuity and a sense of humor.  Now, certainly no one normally displays all these virtues to the highest degree at the same time, in the real world but these are the characteristics that identify the ideal.  My thesis is that Bugs is close to that ideal.

I’ll start with the last quality first.  I defy anyone to deny that Bugs Bunny practically defines mid-century American humor.  The Looney Tunes were among the most popular things shown at the movie theaters across the country and Bugs was the most popular character in the cartoons.  Bugs had a wise crack for every occasion and every antagonist.

All the rest of these qualities are on constant display as the “wascally wabbit” battles any and every rabbit hating adversary from Elmer Fudd all the way up to Hitler and Mussolini.  His intrepidity extended all the way up to Martians wielding disintegrator guns and gremlins sabotaging the very aircraft that Bugs is flying.  And one last quality he exemplified was patriotism.  In one episode he competed with various other characters to see who was the true “superman.”  But at the end he abandons the competition to become the true superman by donning the dress uniform of a US Marine.  Of course, this was at the height of World War II.  I think I’ve made my case.

So, here’s to you Bugs, the Greatest American Hero.

That’s All Folks.”