Middle River Dispatches is a gumbo of posts about fly-fishing, conservation, politics and days afield.

Trump flirts with impeachment if he threatens Mueller – LA Times

Let the special counsel do his job.

Source: Trump flirts with impeachment if he threatens Mueller – LA Times

The real reason Trump is not a Republican – The Washington Post

I knew Jack Danforth when he was a U.S. Senator. When he is compelled to write something like this it is worth paying attention to.

To my fellow Republicans: We cannot allow Donald Trump to redefine the Republican Party. That is what he is doing, as long as we give the impression by our silence that his words are our words and his actions are our actions. We cannot allow that impression to go unchallenged.

As has been true since our beginning, we Republicans are the party of Lincoln, the party of the Union. We believe in our founding principle. We are proud of our illustrious history. We believe that we are an essential part of present-day American politics. Our country needs a responsibly conservative party. But our party has been corrupted by this hateful man, and it is now in peril.

Source: The real reason Trump is not a Republican – The Washington Post

Bay Journal – Article: Bay Journal to lose EPA funding

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Source: Bay Journal – Article: Bay Journal to lose EPA funding

Opinion | President Trump is deteriorating before our very eyes

Here’s one way this could all end.

Source: Opinion | President Trump is deteriorating before our very eyes

Gulf of Mexico loaded with one of world’s highest concentrations of plastic; here’s why

Much of it is in microparticles, fibers pouring in from Mississippi River, new study says

Source: Gulf of Mexico loaded with one of world’s highest concentrations of plastic; here’s why

Opinion: Career Advice for Restless Capitol Hill GOP Staffers

This column is written for every Republican staffer on Capitol Hill who — even now — is debating whether to join the Trump administration. It is also directed at those who have already followed their dreams of striding along the corridors of power and entered the White House.My advice to you sounds like the dialogue in a disaster movie: “Don’t do it. Run. Get out now. It’s the only escape.”

Source: Opinion: Career Advice for Restless Capitol Hill GOP Staffers

The Fascists Were Using Antifa against Conservatives, by Michael Brendan Dougherty, National Review

‘You must love Antifa, ya cuck.” “Will you also condemn Antifa, BLM, and radical Muslims? I’m disappointed in you.” It’s in reading these desperate social-media messages about violent left-wing protesters that I realized the true purpose of the tiki-torch ectomorph rally in Charlottesville. The “Unite the Right” rally had little to do with “defending” Confederate memorials, or any particular reading of southern history, however misguided. The designated speakers weren’t exactly kids who grew up learning how to give a rebel yell from Paw-Paw. Two of the billed speakers were anti-Semitic podcasters from New York; another fancies himself an American version of France’s Nouvelle Droite. The Robert E. Lee statue was a MacGuffin — or, rather, he was Antifa bait, and the college town that it happened to be in was just a place where Antifa could be expected to swim. The organizers don’t want heritage, they wanted footage. Really, what they wanted to do was to set a trap for conservatives. The explosive growth of Antifa during the 2016 campaign and since the election of Donald Trump has become a fixture in conservative media. Conservatives had warned that mainstream-media figures were summoning an awful thing into being by cheering on masked left-wingers who punched Nazis. Soon, anyone you wanted to punch would start looking like a Nazi. Sure enough. Aggressive left-wing “direct action” started falling on conservative speakers on campus. And Antifa played the main role in shutting down speeches by Milo Yiannopoulos and Ann Coulter. Even if conservatives, of the type that wears loafers and bowties, had become used to holding Yiannopoulos and Coulter at arm’s length, the sight of left-wingers using violence and the threat of worse riots to shut them down caused some rallying effect. The organizers of Unite the Right wanted to achieve the same thing for themselves. A spectacle would attract Antifa, who would predictably use violence. Some mainstream-media figures would endorse that violence, and some conservatives, they believed, would feel obliged to defend the ActualFascists because, hey, these left-wing mobs are attacking America’s legal and social norms of free speech. In other words, even if the assorted Jew-haters and fashy dorks can’t persuade conservatives to adopt a “no enemies to the right” posture, perhaps Antifa would. And then one of these MAGA-fascists rammed his Dodge muscle car into peaceful protesters, killing a woman. That fact scuttled the rally organizers’ talking point that it was Antifa or poor policing that initiated and caused all the violence. And it prevented conservatives from venturing the “both sides” argument that so swiftly blew up in President Trump’s face. The murder of Heather Heyer was a revelation, and so too was the way that rally co-organizer Christopher Cantwell, met news of her death — by sneering, “The fact that nobody on our side died, I’d go ahead and call that points for us.” At the exact moment Richard Spencer and his friends successfully recaptured the “alt-right” label from the so-called alt-light Gamergaters and other populists, it became stained in blood. Still, the problem Charlottesville presents for the larger “alt-light” is serious. There seemed to be a real upside to cultivating a reputation as the edgiest and most transgressive political movement going. You’re free of the pieties that come from longer-lived movements. You look authentic, even fresh. And your stock goes up. But there’s an iron law at work here: As soon as anyone identifiably on the right gets the reward of attention for being transgressive, the Neo-Nazis swiftly show up, and the value of transgressive right-wing politics returns to its true value in America, near zero. It was amusing to see Gavin McInnes disavow the fiasco in Charlottesville. McInnes has cultivated a gang-like aura among his all-male fraternal organization, the Proud Boys. He and his group had dropped out of the rally once he got the vibe that it was going to turn into a “white power” thing. “I remember hearing William F. Buckley had to drum out the Nazis from National Review, and it didn’t sound like a big deal,” McInnes said in his recent video, “But when you do it, you realize how tedious it is.” Most of the debate about Confederate monuments after Charlottesville has been a distraction. No kidding. Most of the debate about Confederate monuments after Charlottesville has been a distraction. The rally organizers came prepared for violence, and they wanted it. They wanted footage of themselves getting punched and maced so that they could use conservative antipathy to Antifa to erode conservative antipathy to ActualFascists. Don’t fall for it. READ MORE:What Identity Politics Hath WroughtThe Alt-Right Is Bad — And So Is ‘Antifa’Is the Party of Lincoln Now the Party of Lee? — Michael Brendan Dougherty is a senior writer at National Review.

Source: The Fascists Were Using Antifa against Conservatives, by Michael Brendan Dougherty, National Review

War over Confederate statues reveals simple thinking on all sides

There’s nothing wrong with removing truly offensive statues — but let’s audit these memorials with care and context.

Source: War over Confederate statues reveals simple thinking on all sides

Patagonia’s first-ever TV commercial is in defense of public lands

Patagonia has never run a TV commercial. Not once. In 60 years. Since its earliest roots as Chouinard Equipment, a one-man operation run out of the back of Yvon Chouinard’s car, Patagonia has grown to become one of the largest apparel companies in the world with annual revenues upwards of $500 million dollars. And the company has accomplished all of this, in the competitive apparel world where marketing is half the battle, without ever running a television advertisement. Until now, that is.

Source: Patagonia’s first-ever TV commercial is in defense of public lands

Opinion | I Voted for Trump. And I Sorely Regret It.

I supported the president in dozens of articles, radio and TV appearances. I won’t do it any longer.

Source: Opinion | I Voted for Trump. And I Sorely Regret It.