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I ‘Bungled It’: David Frum Whines About Losing Debate To Steve Bannon

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Former George W. Bush speechwriter David Frum, a face of the NeverTrump “Republican” establishment, lost the Munk debate in Toronto to Steve Bannon, populist-nationalist CEO of the President Trump 2016 campaign and original Trump White House chief strategist.

Frum is one of the few media-friendly so-called conservatives still clinging to newsprint in the age of Trump by throwing spitballs at the wildly successful Commander in Chief. (He also wrote a book on W. Bush entitled “The Right Man,” lest we forget).

Bannon fans were looking forward to the confrontation.

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Watch the full Munk Debate here:

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Frum set the scene in his post-debate lamentation in The Atlantic: “Bannon is not a marginal figure. He is a central personality in the history of our times, who helped to elect a president of the United States and is now advising competitive political parties across Europe. If you think his—and their—influence is pernicious, well, that influence does not become any less pernicious if you refuse to argue why it is wrong. The debate in Toronto focused on a prediction: whether the future belonged to populist politics (the polite term for the politics of Donald Trump and the many Little Trumps in power or competing for power across our Earth) or to liberal politics, in the broadest sense of the word liberal.”

Frum found Bannon to be more impressive in front of a crowd than Frum imagined, writing, “As a debater, Bannon proved engaging and entertaining. When one of his lines gained lonely applause from a single audience member, Bannon quipped, ‘Thanks, Mom.’ That lit up the room.”

Frum notes that at the beginning of the debate, the audience supported the Frum position 72-28, but at the end of the debate Bannon won with the crowd, 57-43.

Here is Frum beating himself up about the loss, which is unintentionally hilarious:

“But that loss, although my fault, was not my problem alone. I had by my apparent failure confirmed every criticism of the debate. I had helped to provide a platform in an inhospitable city and country to Bannonism—and instead of offering hope, I had contributed to despair. I had lent my name and my energy to powerfully disseminating and legitimating exactly what I had hoped to expose and refute. I had undertaken a great responsibility and had somehow bungled it.

Worse, I could not even diagnose how I had bungled it. Speak from platforms often enough, and you develop—or believe you develop—a sense of a room as acute as your sense of sight or smell. Through the evening, I had felt the room was with me, and in growing numbers, too. Yet obviously, I had gotten that wrong. I had not only failed, but been blind to my own failure…

It’s the foundation that I had hoped to expose in Toronto. By a cunning plot twist, I did expose it—but in a way that may have strengthened that foundation rather than attacked it.

The formal portion of the debate between Bannon and me was brought to an end by a stroke of the clock. But the strange result ensured that the actual debate continues. Can we reason our way out of the political nightmare into which unreason has led us? That question remains open still.”

Frum passage ends

Hey, don’t go away mad, Frum. Just go away.

Free Speech

Josh Hawley SLAPS DOWN Justin Amash in Big Tech Tweet Thread

Amash recently failed to win the Libertarian Party presidential nomination.

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Missouri Republican populist Senator Josh Hawley slapped down corporate libertarian Congressman Justin Amash in an epic tweet thread, educating him on the wide variety of constitutional and measured policy proposals to regulate the political censorship tactics of Big Tech monopolies such as Twitter and Facebook.

Amash had claimed Hawley, a Yale Law graduate with more than a decade of experience practicing as a private attorney and as the Attorney General of Missouri was ignorant as to the ramification of Section 230 of the communications decency act that exempts the Big Tech monopolies from legal challenges to their censorship tactics. Hawley had earlier sent a letter to Twitter CEO demanding that he provide a meaningful explanation of what makes the censorious company a platform, as opposed to a publisher that actively curates political content.

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Hawley responded, making sure to remind the Never Trump Libertarian that he had recently failed to win the presidential nomination of the Libertarian Party.

Amash had tried to obstinately argue that Twitter is little more than a neutral platform, when the tech company has been actively inserting editorial ‘fact checks’ into conservative content. Hawley was quick to remind him that the totally arbitrary liberal narrative Twitter is now inserting onto President Trump’s tweets isn’t much different from the liberal screeds one would expect from CNN or the New York Times.

Inserting an arbitrary “fact-check” into the President’s tweets is in fact significant editorial content, even though it’s inconvenient to the corporate libertarian who couldn’t even win the presidential nomination of what may be the most cringeworthy political party in the United States.

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