Bernie’s Q&A: Malkin, Fuentes, Vindman, Ginsburg, and more! (11/22) — Premium Interactive ($4 members)
Welcome to this week’s Premium Q&A session for Premium Interactive members. I appreciate you all signing up and joining me. Thank you.
Let’s get to your questions (and my answers):
What’s up with Michelle Malkin lately? She used to be reasonable and intelligent. I’m sorry to hear that she’s been an apologist for alt right provocateur Fuentes. I would assume that she knows better but I have to wonder what is going on with her. What are your thoughts on why an intelligent and well informed conservative commentator would end up in such a position? -- Apologist Regards from The Emperor
She's been hard right for a while now. I think she and others detest the other side so much that they'll say and do things that strike reasonable people as unreasonable and unintelligent. Besides, being reasonable is not a good business model these days. Check out prime time cable on any news channel if you don't believe me.
As for her association with Nick Fuentes, who is a Holocaust denier ... despicable! I'm not saying Malkin is anti-Semitic; I don't know if she is or isn't. But speaking well of Fuentes, as she apparently has, because she agrees with him on immigration, is just plain dumb at best and reprehensible at worst. She could easily have found someone who is not a bigot and shares her views on limited immigration to sidle up to. The good news is that some conservatives have cut ties with her over this.
I used to watch (or have playing in the background) cable news upwards of 4-5 hours per day; I am now down to about 1-2. Do you see any evidence that this is a trend among TV news viewers? By the way, I credit you and this forum for this, and I thank you. -- Scotty G.
Is this a trend? It is with me, Scotty. I watch far less than I used to also. I watch the news but try to stay clear of the commentary -- because it's fundamentally without principles. If Barack Obama did the things President Trump is accused of doing, the Fox prime time lineup would yell for his impeachment. Now they defend everything Mr. Trump does. And it's the same with the liberal channels. They're yelling that the president should be impeached, but if it were Obama in the GOP crosshairs, they'd be defending him. I don't need this and so I watch far less than I used to. And more than a few friends are like you Scotty; they also have either stopped watching cable news or cut way back.
Team Trump came after impeachment witness Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman pretty hard. Republicans on the panel (as well as Trump's social media director) suggested Vindman was loyal to Ukraine, and the White House distributed anti-Vindman talking points to its allies, including on Fox News. Prior to that, Trump himself claimed Vindman was a disloyal Never Trumper who is out to get him. Due to threats and safety concerns, the Army has placed Vindman and his family under 24-hour security, and is even considering moving them to a military base for a while. All this guy really did was voice concerns about unethical government conduct to get people to treat him like a traitor. Do you think there's any coming back from how indecent political tribalism has made people? -- Jen R.
Indecent is a good word for a lot of what we're witnessing, Jen. But what's also troubling is how the tribes react. Each side defends its team and trashes the other. Principles be damned. Can we come back from this mess? I'm not sure the partisans on either side have any interest in moving toward a more decent place. Something may come along to bring us together again, but in the short run I'm not optimistic.
Bernie: I really enjoy these Q&A's, so thank you. In 2005 you wrote the book "100 People Who are Screwing Up America". Who from the world of politics, media and sports were not on the list then but you would include now? Any on the old list you'd like to reconsider? -- Steve R.
First, let me explain that the book was about people screwing up the culture. So I had very few politicians on the list. That said, if I were to do an update -- which I will not do -- I'd put Adam Schiff and Donald Trump on the list. In the media section, I'd add the heads of all three cable new operations for contributing to the corruption of journalism -- by allowing the lines between news and commentary to be blurred ... for money!
As for reconsidering those on the original list: Maybe one or two here or there. But I'd rather not go back and look. Mainly because I got no joy out of putting people on the list in the first place.
Term Limits. So many challenges would be solved. Everyone gets six years. Reps don't need to raise money continuously. Senators vote their conscience - good or bad, as no need to pander to get reelected. The president does what she or he feels to best for the country. Again, no pandering to the base. I wonder how your readers feel? -- Aloha, Mike S.
Even though you make a lot of sense, I still would prefer that voters be the judges of who stays and who goes, and for how long they stay or don't stay. But if your ideas went into effect, I wouldn't protest or lose sleep.
Nigel Calder, the late, well respected British science writer referred to the Anthropogenic Global Warming Scare as the greatest scientific hoax in history..I definitely agree, what say you, Mr. Goldberg? -- Stephen M.
On global warming, I stay clear. I'm not a scientist. But anytime 99 percent of journalists agree on something, I'm skeptical. That doesn't make me a denier. But I'm not fretting over the end of the world in 10 or 12 years either.
Like you, born and raised NYer with love of NY sports. Boyhood highlight? Sitting with Milton Gross’s son, game 5 right behind Laker bench 1971, “ and Willis is hurt” ( Marv, WHN). But I digress. Jeter to Jorge is historically referenced as ‘The Flip”. For the first time I can remember you were inartful in your recollection. Submitted for historical accuracy only. Not a shot. Big fan as you know. -- Ronald M.
It's "The Flip" and I said "toss." Guilty. I'll be more careful next time, Ronald.
Regarding your previous Q&A statement: "If evangelical Christians ever developed a moral backbone, Donald Trump might change his ways. As long as you remain silent, he'll remain vile."
I write to him directly via the contact form with what I like and dislike. I write letters to the editor, and call out the good and the horrible. I'll be voting for anyone but Trump in the primary. If he remains the lesser of two evils in November 2020, would you agree it's not a slight against me as an Evangelical to pick the lesser of two evils? -- Bill N.
Not a slight, Bill. I understand the realities of politics. And my gripe is aimed mainly at so-called evangelical leaders -- the ones who preach morality for a living. I'm good with you, my friend.
Bernie, you are taking the impeachment efforts way too lightly. It's an attempted coup. The Democrats have used subpoena power to conduct secret hearings using testimony from a DNC operative. They are allowing hearsay evidence to be treated as first hand evidence. Due process suspended. There has been a 3 year planned and coordinated impeachment effort. Your thoughts? -- Charles K.
Not taking impeachment lightly at all, Charles. This is very serious business. And I believe the president will be impeached ... and then NOT convicted. I also think the progressives have wanted the president out from the day he won the election. But, as I've written, while I'm curious as to who the whistleblower is, it doesn't matter if he's got political motives. Whatever the president said in that phone call, he said. That's all that matters. I never said his comments were worthy of impeachment ... just that like so many other things he says they were stupid and needless and gave Schiff and company one more excuse to launch impeachment proceedings. The big question is how this will affect independents next November. And on that, I'm not sure if it will hurt the president or the Democrats.
Great analysis [on Schiff's impeachment performance], but I would add just one more little consideration: Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She is getting up there and in poor health. If she decides to retire for health reasons, there will be another seat open on the Supreme Court for Donald Trump to fill. It's obvious they think it will be hard to win against him with the bench they have, so they want to cripple him or wear him down like they did to Sarah Palin, who stepped down as governor of Alaska due to the constant suits by democrat special interest groups.
If the democrats had been smart they would have found a way to work with him in case another vacancy opened up to negotiate for a moderate candidate. If another vacancy opens, he will never work with them after all of this. Without Obama, the democrats just don't seem to be playing their cards right for what they want. What do you think? -- Frances
First, Frances, I don't think Ruth Bader Ginsburg will step down before the next election -- no matter what condition she's in. She'll hope he loses, then step down and let a Democrat pick her successor. If he wins, and if she remains in poor health, then, yes, she'll have to retire and President Trump will pick another conservative (assuming the GOP hangs on to the Senate). As for working with the president in hopes that he'd pick a moderate, his base would not be happy with that. Moderate to them is a synonym for weak and wimpy. And all he cares about is pandering to his base.
Thanks, everyone! You can send me questions for next week using the form below! You can also read previous Q&A sessions by clicking here.