Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Who won the first debate?

Hillary Clinton went on full offense at the first presidential debate. Donald Trump was playing a prevent defense. Did he let Hillary score? The short answer is yes. Trump seemed unwilling to play to his major strength, which is illegal immigration. Hillary hammered him on his temperament, and on several occasions he played into her hands. However, Trump has something that Hillary desperately needs right now and that’s momentum.

We can all sit here and Monday morning quarterback the debate, but it was obvious that Trump’s handlers had one objective. That was to make sure Trump didn’t step on his own message. To that end, they were successful. However, he left a lot on the table.

Hillary’s people obviously told her to smile a lot, and she did to the point of looking robotic. In the early stages of the debate, her eyes made her appear as though she was falling asleep. They closed so slowly that one was left wondering if they would open again. As the debate wore on she got better. With all of her recent health problems, there was speculation that she might not remain vertical through the 90-minute debate. For that reason alone she surpassed expectations. Hillary’s health was the one issue Trump needed to avoid at all costs, and he came dangerously close when he questioned her stamina.

This debate lacked much in the way of substance. It was Hillary charging hard into the line and Trump trying to keep her from advancing the ball. She justifiably hit Trump on the birther charge then twisted it into some sort of racial attack. Trump seemed to allow her the yardage and really didn’t push back against the racism charge. Think what you will about questioning Obama’s birthplace, but there’s nothing racist about it. Trump asked the same questions of Ted Cruz and he’s a white guy. Of course, pointing out that he has a habit of such tactics only feeds into Hillary’s narrative that he’s unstable. He lost points on that issue, but it’s probably not an issue that many people care about.

What was conspicuously absent from Trump’s presentation was the central issue of illegal immigration and building the border wall. Perhaps it would’ve sounded too much like a caricature of himself. Maybe his handlers advised him to stay away from it, but it’s the central issue in his campaign and its absence left a gaping hole at the end of the night.

He also showed uncharacteristic restraint in not hitting Hillary on the issue of trustworthiness. It was an apple begging to be picked and he left it on the tree. But that would mean his game plan had changed to offense instead of defense, and it was obvious that was not how he planned to win.

Polls the day of the debate showed Trump pulling even in battleground states like Pennsylvania and Colorado. If he wins Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Florida this thing is pretty much over. His campaign team understands that, and they also understand that reverting to the candidate who seems to love the taste of his own foot is not how you win battleground states.

I said from the day Trump announced his candidacy that he is the empty vessel into which people pour their hopes and dreams. If he fills that vessel with his own Trump Punch then it defeats the purpose. Deliberate vagueness will always serve him better than specifics. That’s probably why the majority of those polled thought he won the debate.

This first debate was Trump’s to lose, and he managed not to do that.

Phil Valentine is the host of the award-winning, nationally syndicated talk radio show, 
The Phil Valentine Show.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

The snake among us

It’s interesting how history has placed the right person in the right place for the right job. Ronald Reagan wanted to be president in 1976, but it was not yet his time. It’s amazing how different the circumstances were four years later and the rest, as they say, is history.

The inability or unwillingness of President Obama to understand and act upon domestic terrorism is one of the driving factors behind the recent Trump surge.

Trump has become fond of reading the lyrics from the song “The Snake,” which was written by the late Oscar Brown, Jr. It’s based on one of Aesop’s fables and tells the story of a woman who takes in a half-frozen snake she found by the side of the road and nurses it back to health only to have the snake turn on her once he’s healthy and kill her with a venomous bite. The snake, of course, represents the terrorists we’re taking in through our ill-conceived refugee program.

Trump gets it. The premise is so simple and rings so true that most Americans get it, too. Ironically, the family of Oscar Brown, Jr. doesn’t. They want Trump to stop using his lyrics. But the story so succinctly incapsulates the times in which we’re living. Obama is that woman. He’s in such denial that he couldn’t even utter the word “terrorism” in connection with the recent bombings and stabbings in New York, New Jersey, and Minnesota. 

Obama claims there’s no connection between the attacks, but there is one obvious and undeniable link. ISIS. For months now, they have been urging followers across the globe to embark on acts of terrorism wherever they live. No one is off limits, according to ISIS, if they turn away from their radical worldview. 

Even when Obama does utter the word “terrorism,” he refuses to use it in the same neighborhood as “Islamic.” However, he’s fond of referring to the current band of barbarians terrorizing the Middle East and Europe as ISIL. The subtle difference is worth noting. ISIS stands for Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. ISIL stands for Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. That takes in a much bigger swath of the Middle East including Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, Jordan, and, yes, Israel. This difference is totally ignored by the media. It gives ISIS credit for having influence over a much larger area.

For someone who refuses to say “radical Islamic terrorism,” Obama is saying it every time he mentions ISIL. Not matter if you call them ISIS or ISIL, there’s one commonality. Islamic State. If Obama doesn’t believe the terrorists are truly Muslim, why does he keep referring to them as the Islamic State? If he doesn’t believe the terrorists are truly Muslim, why does he insist on accommodating occupants of Gitmo with Qurans and halal, the Muslim diet?

Obama brags that he’s ahead of schedule in allowing refugees into this country. He wants to bring in another 110,000 next year. We know that ISIS controls several passport offices in Syria. That fact alone makes it clear that we have no way of safely vetting refugees from that country. The FBI has made that clear. We simply don’t know who’s who, yet Obama and Hillary refuse to see the problem for what it is. The American people are starting to see, and Trump’s surge is indicative of it.

The snake has been taken in by naive nations across Europe that ignore its true intention and believe they’re being compassionate. Now, the snake is here, and there’s only one man who’s willing to kill it.

Phil Valentine is the host of the award-winning, nationally syndicated talk radio show, The Phil Valentine Show.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

The fog that surrounds Hillary Clinton

Imagine if Donald Trump left an event, suddenly was unable to stand, and was dragged into a waiting car and whisked away. Instead of going to the hospital, the car drove him home where he rested and emerged later as if nothing had happened. What do you think the mainstream media would do? 

Such an event would be disturbing, to say the very least.

The circumstances surrounding Hillary Clinton’s 9/11 health emergency are so bizarre that one is left wondering what is really going on. The obfuscation by the Clinton camp is now so routine that nothing they present as the truth is believable.

For weeks, we were told that any questions surrounding Hillary’s health were merely conspiracy theories cooked up by the ‘alt-right,’ whatever that’s supposed to be. The morning of 9/11, those conspiracy theories suddenly had credence. Even the big networks couldn’t ignore the obvious, but they quickly reset to their default mode of denial. 

Here’s what we know. Something is wrong with Hillary. What’s wrong is left to speculation since the Clinton campaign continues to cover its tracks. I have been hesitant to join the speculation, but just take a look at the video of Hillary leaving the 9/11 commemoration ceremony. Why did only one camera capture her departure? I’m being told that the media following her were prohibited from following her out of the event. That, in and of itself, should raise suspicion.

What immediately struck me while watching the video is how routine the whole episode seemed. The Secret Service and Hillary’s staff appeared not at all alarmed. Again, imagine if that were Donald Trump. There would be absolute panic if he were unable to board the vehicle under his own power. At the very least, the car would’ve headed immediately to the emergency room.

Instead, the Secret Service seemed to fall into a routine pattern. Two of them lifted her off her feet into the waiting vehicle while the rest closed ranks to block out prying eyes. Obviously, they had seen this all before. The only person on the scene who seemed panicked was a New York City cop who rushes toward the van as Hillary collapses. Everyone else is as nonchalant as if she just left an event normally.

She has a history of fainting at events going back as far as 2005. The circumstances surrounding her concussion are still murky. Again, it’s blamed on a virus and being dehydrated. Why would she fall so hard as to cause a concussion and double vision? As the Daily Mail put it, “Hillary’s shielded medical history is no longer just for conspiracy theorists as her ‘penchant for privacy’ gets serious scrutiny.”

The mainstream media seemed jilted by the 9/11 event, asking why the campaign lied to them. They have to ask?

Hillary’s entire life has been shrouded in inexplicable excuses and stories that turned out to be outright lies. For example, her marriage to a serial woman abuser, and her desperate attempts to destroy any woman who came forward with accusations. Her odd—and illegal—use of a private server while secretary of state. The unbelievable number of meetings while in that office with direct donors to the Clinton Foundation. The missing e-mails. The classified information that was loosely handled by her and her staff. 

Now speculation swirls around her very ability to physically endure the office of the presidency while getting to the real story is, again, made nearly impossible. Whether Hillary is up to the task is beside the point. Now it’s simply a matter of trust.

Phil Valentine is the host of the award-winning, nationally syndicated talk radio show, The Phil Valentine Show.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Eric Trump's unanswered question

Eric Trump, the son of presidential candidate Donald Trump, asked an obvious question of the Clintons that the mainstream media seem determined to ignore. “What product were they selling to make $150 million?” he asked. It’s an interesting question. The wealth of most people can be traced to something tangible. There’s no such trail leading back to the Clinton wealth.

Courtesy: TheFederalist.com
It’s now obvious to most everyone that the product the Clinton’s have long peddled is influence. Dick Morris told me that while in office they used money to buy influence. Now they use influence to make money.

Hillary Clinton had a private e-mail server for one purpose. To hide the tracks of the dealings of the Clinton Foundation. Like a UV lamp at a crime scene, we now clearly see the footprints leading from the State Department to the Clinton Foundation and back again, over and over. More than half of the private citizens Hillary met with at State had made donations to her Foundation. What are the chances that people meeting with any government official would, more than half the time, give to the very same charity? I’d love to have a Vegas oddsmaker run those odds.

Bill Allison, a senior fellow with the government watchdog group the Sunlight Foundation, tells the New York Post, “It seems like the Clinton Foundation operates as a slush fund for the Clintons.” It’s not a direct charity, per se, rather it’s a pass-through, a conduit for other so-called charities to receive donations, like Al Sharpton’s much-maligned National Action Network. 

And there’s the impropriety. Hillary signed off on a deal while secretary of state that allowed a Russian company to control one-fifth of our uranium output in the U.S. That was after a principal in a Canadian company that was sold to the Russians gave $130 million to the Clinton Foundation.

The ‘charity’ is also top-heavy in administrative expenses and short on real giving. According to their IRS filing in 2013, they brought in $149 million that year and disbursed only $9 million to charities. 

The Clinton’s are lauded for their generous charitable giving, as gleaned from their tax returns. The problem is the charity they’re giving to is their own. Ninety-six percent of their donations went to their own charity. They not only reap the tax benefits from giving to it, they travel first class on its dime. But it’s even worse than that. 

According to the Washington Times, the little they gave to other charities came back to them in spades. For example, the Clintons gave $42,000 to a charity called the Desert Classic Charities. That charity then wrote a check to the Clinton Foundation for $700,000. Sounds like Hillary’s cattle futures windfall all over again.

All the while Hillary plays dumb on the whole server scandal. She claimed not to know what the marking ‘C’ on her e-mails meant. Instead of meaning ‘classified,’ she claimed to the FBI that she thought it referenced paragraphs in alphabetical order, despite the fact that there was no ‘A’ or ‘B’ or any other letter of the alphabet marked on the e-mail. She said she’d never received any training on how to handle classified material, but signed documents prove otherwise. And don’t forget she was intimately familiar with classified material as a United States senator.

She claimed that all work-related e-mails were turned over, but they keep popping up.

So, we’re back to Eric Trump’s question. What product is Hillary Clinton selling? The answer is obvious. Herself, and to the highest bidder.

Phil Valentine is the host of the award-winning, nationally syndicated talk radio show, The Phil Valentine Show.