The John Batchelor Show

Thursday 16 July 2020

Air Date: 
July 16, 2020

Colleagues: Sebastian Gorka, America First radio on Salem, and Fox; and Malcolm Hoenlein, Conference of Presidents
Hour One
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 1, Block A:  Victor Davis Hanson, Hoover 7 National Review, in re: Peak Jacobinism. Peak me-tooism with Brett Kavanaugh. Denunciations of the 153 Harper’s signatories.  We learn from the letter: careerism; the Internet mob;  effort to take out a well-known person and thereby elevate their own status.  Let homeless take over parks, defund police, crash statues; shut down 911. A demand letter directed at Princeton University:  wanted a faculty-student committee of public safety, unaccountable to anyone. The administration caved in and didn't even object. Also: review hiring, firing, language, lecture.  It's not even class-driven; it’s race-driven. Demand race quotas, theme houses, safe spaces, rec centers, all based on race.  Forget Dr Martin Luther King. Why aren’t the adults in charge pushing back? One: hatred of Donald Trump, so this movement creates chaos and anarchy against Trump; two, these people have cushy jobs, will do anything to prevent people coming to my home and screaming at me.  Cowardly.
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 1, Block B:  Victor Davis Hanson, Hoover, in re: The wall.  A representation of defending the United Stats; American sovereignty. He’s completed 215 miles, envisions 400-plus by the end of the year. If he serves a second tem, he’ll finish the 1,200 miles. Each mile completed fees up a large complement of border security guards. I live in a Mexican-American area; everybody is poor; they all want the wall.  The second matter: the economy was booming, now the president must restore it, or at least show that it’s ascendant. This weak he started to.  Restoration 2021: China will do this again, We need to have a natl plan on how to deal with this. Also, the $30 trillion debt.  The root of a lot of the current troubles is the universities; I think he’ll have to tax endowments, If they can't honor free speech, they should lose their federal funding. Also: highways, dams, bridges all need repair. Four states have almost 50% of the population; need to spread out [more evenly]. 
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 1, Block C:  Monica Crowley, Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs for the U.S. Department of the Treasury; in re: Economists continually underestimate the ability of the country to recover. When they allowed us out, we shopped.    Chart on retail sales was steady pre-Covid; then decline; now: a dramatic increase. Looks like a V-shaped consumer and retail-sales recovery.  Double-digit increase—and car sales rose 8.2% in June. Gasoline; bars & restaurants, spending, all increased.  All the stores boarded up after the June disorders are open again except Victoria’s Secret.  Washington is slightly ahead of New York City in re-opening.  People who’ve been pent up and cooped up are eager to get out. Rural America: life goes on as normal except everyone wears a mask. A chocolate store on 35 St is open again.  People are investing in homes; Dutchess County horse estates are putting up SOLD signs. Migration to exurban and rural areas.  Some parts of the economy are still suffering—the reason for PPP, enhanced unemployment insurance, many programs stood up in record time to get people through this challenging time.  Unprecedented times.  We’re committed to seeing that every American get a job.  Payroll tax holiday or tax cut considered.
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 1, Block D:  Veronique de Rugy, Mercatus Center, in re: Thirty-year mortgage under 3% for the first time ever. Did the Federal Reserve create this? Will it be permanent?  No; but it’s a great moment to accumulate debt.  This is a perfect environment in which to cut spending, but both parties [rush headlong into increasing debt].   A permanent debt crisis. We’ll slow even more with a $7 trillion debt.
Hour Two
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 2, Block A: Lt-Col Sarit Zehavi, in re: Huge fall of the Lebanese pound.  Lebanese suffering hard conditions from corrupted system, Hezbollah taking over he country; none of this has harmed Hezbollah’s military ability, and it controls the government more than ever before. Has 10,000 missiles in Lebanon; upgrade has occurred. Were the missiles to hit Israel, that’d be catastrophic for Beirut; does anyone consider this? Yes.  But interested in drawing attention away from domestic problems.
Lieutenant Colonel Sarit Zehavi is the Founder and CEO of Alma research and education center, a nonprofit and an independent research and education center specialized in Israel’s security challenges on its northern border. Lt. Colonel Zehavi served for 15 years in the Israeli Defense Forces, specializing in military intelligence. Lt. Colonel Zehavi holds an M.A. in Middle East Studies from Ben-Gurion University.
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 2, Block B:  Ilan Berman, in re: Explosions and fires unexplained across the predatory regime of Iran. An actor not taking credit.  Odds are in favor of the sabotage campaign being from the Israeli government. Bushehr ships?  A fascinating wrinkle; plausible.  Indigenously developed hacks: of Iranians’s hacking their own government.  Big news that Iran has been steadily drawing closer to China over the last four years; framework accord for a quarter-century of close contact, incl military.  Iran now has a steady oil purchaser. 
1.  The Iranian regime is seriously rickety; looking for a great-power sponsor.  2 Both China and Iran are counting on a change of US president in 2020.   3. Chinese have been making a major play to expand their influence in the Middle East—planting a flag in Iran is very significant.
Global disaffection for China; glaring: Britain leaving Huawei, so China is  having trouble insinuating itself ; can [control] Iranian oil industry while China desperately needs power for its weakening economy. 
Ilan Berman is Senior Vice President of the American Foreign Policy Council in Washington, DC. An expert on regional security in the Middle East, Central Asia, and the Russian Federation, he has consulted for the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency as well as the U.S. Departments of State and Defense, and has also provided assistance on foreign policy and national security issues to a range of governmental agencies and congressional offices.
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 2, Block C:  Brian Hook, in re: Iran, Venezuela, Natanz. Will the US enforce the embargo no matter what?  On Oct 18 the arms embargo expires, one of many failings of the Iran deal, allowing fighter jets, subs, missiles up to 300 km, leading to a regional arms growth.   Saudi, UAE, Bahrain, Israel, are the frontline.  All four strongly favor a continuation of the embargo; Supreme Leader again called on [death for Jews].  Committed to the destruction of the US and Israel. Reportedly $400 bil in Chinese investment in Iran for 25 years; but the sum is highly doubtful.  Iranian people are suspicious of a shadowy deal inked by a tyrannical regime.  Ayatollahs urgently need capital, even while China has well over a million Uyghur Muslim in concentration camps. 
I share an office wall with Elliot Abrams on the seventh floor.  Ran shipping oil to Venezuela; two pariah states, both run by brute fore and having economies in the tank. Five ships did make it to Caracas from Iran, but four did not. We’re driving up costs and disrupting.  Arrest of Saab: a Justice Dept matter.  We’re seeing greater domestic unrest in Iran.  Now 236,000 Iranian rials to a dollar. Libya, Iran and Venezuela are the three at the bottom of the IMF list of economies.  Iran’s kleptocracy; world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism and anti-Semitism.  Azerbaijani protestors after the Armenian clashes. Water cannon and tear gas; deaths.  Possibilities of military options anent Iran: President Trump is committee to Iran’s never getting a nuclear weapon.  (What would that look like? North Korea.)  Choice of guns on Damascus  or butter in Iran.   No country in the world wants Iran to have a nuclear weapon. 
Brian Hook is the U.S. Special Representative for Iran and Senior Policy Advisor to the Secretary of State. Prior to this appointment, he served as Director of the Policy Planning Staff from 2017–2018. From 2009–2017, he managed an international strategic consulting firm based in Washington, DC.  Mr. Hook held a number of senior positions in the Bush Administration, including Assistant Secretary of State for International Organizations; Senior Advisor to the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations; Special Assistant to the President for Policy in the White House Chief of Staff’s office; and Counsel, Office of Legal Policy, at the Justice Department.
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 2, Block D:  Malcolm Hoenlein, in re:   Hamas round-up to break a ring of defectors.  The billions of dollars going into Gaza supposedly for the people has become a massive embezzlement scheme; alternative charities, money stole by foundation directors  with dummy corporations.  Money comes from Paris, goes to Middle East, then back to Paris. EU investing in Area C, in West Bank, under Israeli control. Agreed to bld 16 infrastructure projects, illegally and without approval, to surround and isolate Jewish communities there.
Amnesty Intl is cross with Morocco:  Amnesty’s alleged corruption; it claimed that an Israeli company should have its export license closed because it was spying on Amnesty—which turned out to be entirely bogus. Poisoning minds. 
Tunisian politics, which began the Arab Spring, has deep a ideological split. Public deficit and debt; fiscal problems; economy shrank by 6%.
Hour Three
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 3, Block A:  Sebastian Gorka, America First Radio and Fox; in re:  Seb receives presidential appointment to the National Education Board.  Will be back in the life-blood of national security, interface between defense and private think-tanks and universities to be sure that the govt provides requisite support in [language] study. Critical languages.  At 9/11, all of the CIA had exactly two people who spoke Pashtu!  At least the key leader in this Administration understand the level of threat, with China being the key threat. We convinced Britain to ban Huawei.   Mr Biden would return to the get along/go along days of the Obama Administration: “China isn't a threat; isn't even a competitor,” said Biden. Video of thousands of blindfolded Uyghurs being herded into a cattle car.  “China’s goal is to raid the US.”
China has always been an empire: a country is a tributary, or vassal state, or a defeated state.
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 3, Block B:  Sebastian Gorka, America First Radio and Fox; in re: The New York Times has become much more like Pravda than the historic Old Gray Lady.   Bari Weiss writes a long and lucid letter explaining her resignation from the paper.   The Times staff condemn the condemners—perfectly Stalinist.   There’s not even a compulsion; it's all self-driven propaganda; self-generated by free citizens who happen to be Times managers and staff.  Weiss was brought in ostensibly to widen the breadth of contributions; as a young Jew, she was called a Nazi. A dumpster fire of a rag.
Biden lost energy halfway through a 22-minute speech. Said he’d add taxes and fees to [hobble] commerce. Deregulation has worked miracles under the current administration. Genuflecting to the Squad and [their ilk].  If your house doesn't comport to regs, it’ll be dismantled and rebuilt according to federal requirements 
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 3, Block C: Bruce Thornton, Hoover Front Page Magazine, in re: As of July 24, Turkey will reconvert Hagia Sophia into a mosque.  Complete disavowal of Ataturk’s secularizing/modernization. Sticking a finger in Putin’s eye, as the church/museum is extremely dear to the Russian Orthodox church. Also pokes at NATO: use of mosques as triumphalist in reclaiming the lands of Islam. The West has consistently refused to listen to Muslim interests. Fourteen centuries of practice, doctrine, teaching.
Turkey’s New Mosque a Monument to Western Decline  We may think we’re exhibiting high-minded principles, but our enemies know the score
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 3, Block D: Conrad Black, American Greatness; author and publisher, in re: The apparent trend to disregard people because of their beliefs, “an illiberal trend,” although the denouncers are in the left of the Democratic Party.  Signatories of the pompous letter denounce the denouncers.  Many are well-known, but many of the 150 are not.  Not renowned for a sense of humor. Early in the letter, “illiberalism in the world has a powerful ally in Trump, a menace to democracy.” The chief target is President Trump.  Chomsky  is a lexicographer, but hasn't said one accurate thing in 75 years; he slanders monstruously.   Do they think we’re poorly-read or stupid?  Many on the list are pompous; they profess to be intellectuals, and to tell us how to construct and operate society. Many have written that Trump is guilty of treason. When Melania Trump went the hospital for a day or two for a medical reason, they alleged that her husband had beaten her. 
Irony.  When you start a revolution, you can't turn it off.  These people are getting progressively more outrageous.    Desecrating the monuments of veterans, and statues of Grant, Lincoln, even Douglass. 
Hour Four
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 4, Block A:  Mary Anastasia O’Grady, WSJ America column and editorial board; in re:
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 4, Block B:  John Tamny, RealClearPolitics, in re:
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 4, Block C:  Marketing the Moon: The Selling of the Apollo Lunar Program, by Richard Jurek, David Meerman Scott, et al.  (The MIT Press)
Thursday 16 July 2020 / Hour 4, Block D:  Marketing the Moon: The Selling of the Apollo Lunar Program, by Richard Jurek, David Meerman Scott, et al.  (The MIT Press)