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Michael van der Galien

Michael van der Galien is the founder and editor-in-chief of Media Tapper and <a href="", and managing editor of Dutch news and opinion website De Dagelijkse Standaard. He can be contacted at
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Tories’ Rising Star Boris Johnson Humiliated on Live TV

Monday, March 25th, 2013 - by Michael van der Galien
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The interview above has caused something of a political earthquake in Britain. Boris Johnson is one of the Tories’ (Britain’s conservatives) rising stars and current mayor of London, but he was completely and utterly rattled during an appearance on the BBC Sunday. His questioner, Eddie Mair, asked him questions about past affairs (with women not his own), Johnson “making up” a quote when he was still working for the Times of London newspaper, and even his friendship with individuals who ran into trouble with the law.

Now, Johnson is a very talented politician, with great charisma. Still, he lost his cool here and may very well have dashed his chances of ever occupying ‘Number 10.’

Be that as it may, the question is why? Why did he fail to live up to the standard he normally sets for himself? Being as talented and experienced as he is, how could Mair take him by surprise?

He answered those questions himself at the end of the interview:

“I thought I was coming on to talk about the budget and housing in London and you, you… well, I don’t mind all these questions about that other stuff, but I think it’s more important if we look at the economy…”

In other words, he thought Eddie Mair, the BBC journalist, would treat him like he treats, say, Labour leader Ed Milliband. Nothing could be further from the truth. The media, in the United States as well as in Britain, are institutions of the political left. Any politician who lets himself be interviewed or questioned by such an outlet has to be prepared for an assault. Those who don’t, set themselves up for failure, as Mr. Johnson did yesterday morning.

Rather than moaning and complaining about the “unfair” treatment they receive, conservatives have to finally understand the game they are playing and its rules. Then, and only then, can they possibly hope to win this battle, be it either in Britain, on the Old Continent, or in the United States.

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In Case You Need It: Obama, Benghazi and Terror

Thursday, October 18th, 2012 - by Michael van der Galien

The media are still covering up for Obama by claiming that he did call the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, a terrorist attack. Nothing could be further from the truth, and here are all the documents you need to prove it.

Here is the transcript. He talks about Stevens, then talks about the movie but says it doesn’t justify killing anyone…

He then moves to 9/11/01, at which point he says that no terror act shall go unpunished and what have you.

Then look at this from Jay Carney, his press secretary.

Q Can you — have you called it a terrorist attack before? Have you said that?

MR. CARNEY: I haven’t, but — I mean, people attacked our embassy. It’s an act of terror by definition.

Q Yes, I just hadn’t heard you –

MR. CARNEY: It doesn’t have to do with what date it occurred.

Q No, I just hadn’t heard the White House say that this was an act of terrorism or a terrorist attack. And I just –

MR. CARNEY: I don’t think the fact that we hadn’t is not — as our NCTC Director testified yesterday, a number of different elements appear to have been involved in the attack, including individuals connected to militant groups that are prevalent in eastern Libya, particularly in the Benghazi area. We are looking at indications that individuals involved in the attack may have had connections to al Qaeda or al Qaeda’s affiliates, in particular al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb.

Next, let’s look at quotes from the media who reported on September 20th, that’s nine days after the attack, that the White House, for the first time called it a terrorist attack.

ABC News: “For the first time, White House press secretary Jay Carney publicly characterized the deadly assault on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, as a ‘terrorist attack’.”

LA Times: ” The White House for the first time Thursday described the Sept. 11 assault on the U.S. Consulate in Libya as a terrorist attack that may have involved militants linked to Al Qaeda.”

CNN: “The White House, for the first time Thursday, declared the attack that killed Stevens and three other people a terrorist attack.”

They’re so full of it, it’s a miracle they don’t choke (on their own lies). Next time you find yourself arguing with a “liberal,” use these links to prove, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Obama and his friends are lying about the aftermath of the attack on the consulate.

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The Establishment Fears Gingrich

Saturday, January 28th, 2012 - by Michael van der Galien

Dan Balz wrote  for the Washington Post today:

What is fascinating about the Republican race is that, in a matter of days and weeks, it has turned from the question of whether a stop-Romney movement would materialize to the reality that a stop-Gingrich movement now has taken shape.

That’s certainly true. It’s absolutely fascinating to see the establishment turn on Gingrich (and no, I’m not a fan of his either. For one thing he’s too erratic). Many thought that an anti-Romney movement was afoot. Well, perhaps it is. For now, however, the only anti-movement that is truly united and aggressive is anti-Newt, not anti-Mitt.

And then this:

Gingrich may lose this battle, and he could damage himself in the process. But he will not go quietly, and his old friends and enemies in the party know it.

I have no doubt that Gingrich won’t hold back anything. No, not even if you and I would prove to him that it’ll cost Republicans the elections. He often lets himself be led by his ego. Revenge and anger are two of his main driving forces.

Is that a problem for a presidential candidate in the most powerful country on earth? I believe it is. Especially a person like that should be cool and collected in all circumstances. Say what you will about Gingrich, but that he is not.

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Perry to Romney: ‘Happy New Year Mitt!’

Wednesday, January 4th, 2012 - by Michael van der Galien

As our own Bryan Preston reported earlier today, Texas Governor Rick Perry has announced he’ll stay in the race. That’s somewhat of a surprise. Most people, including myself, had expected him to drop out after his poor performance in Iowa yesterday.

The question now is: who benefits from Perry’s decision?  Well, the first answer is, of course, the governor himself. He at least gives himself another shot at winning. That’s worth something. However, there’s another “winner” and his name isn’t Newt Gingrich.

I am, of course, talking about Mitt Romney. The strategy of Mittens, as AllahPundit loves to call him, is based on “divide and conquer.” At the very moment the campaign develops into a horse race between two candidates, he’s somewhat vulnerable. After all, the conservative base isn’t exactly enamored by the man they consider to be a flip-flopper and “Massachusetts moderate” (at best).

The longer Perry stays in, the more the “conservative base” will be divided. And the more divided it is, the easier it will be for Romney to win this thing. In other words, he just gave Romney a wonderful (but belated) New Year’s present.

There is  a “but,” though. If Perry pulls off an unexpected win in, say, South Carolina, he will suddenly pose a threat to Romney because he will then be able to present himself as the (social) conservative alternative.

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Conservatives Have to Face Reality: It’ll Be Romney

Wednesday, January 4th, 2012 - by Michael van der Galien

I do not, for one second, believe that Rick Santorum can defeat Mitt Romney (and, let’s be honest, nobody does except, apparently, for his own staff).

As such, Romney’s victory in Iowa is very important indeed. It means that he’s now the true frontrunner, the guy to beat.

But who can defeat him?

Rick Perry will probably get out of the race after his abysmal showing yesterday. The Texas governor had a real shot when he entered the race last year, but blew it after stumbling in several debates. Conservative voters – correctly – concluded that he is not the man to take down Obama.

And Michele Bachmann? She should’ve finished in the top three in Iowa but finished sixth and is out.

Of course there’s also the racist and anti-Semitic Ron Paul. Racist and anti-Semitic. Enough said, you’d think.

As such, Republican voters only have one person left who could defeat Romney: Newt Gingrich.

Newt, however, should’ve performed better yesterday. If he wants to have a real shot, he’ll have to pull off an upset in New Hampshire. If Romney wins there as well, it’ll be very difficult for anyone to stop him, especially because the Republican establishment will then undoubtedly call for an end to the race in South Carolina.

To conclude: After yesterday, only one man truly has a path to the nomination. His name is Mitt Romney. All the others are in the very real danger of becoming stage props, nothing more.

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Michele Bachmann to Drop Out

Wednesday, January 4th, 2012 - by Michael van der Galien

Michele Bachmann has announced that she will give a press conference at 11 AM ET. She is dropping out of the race.

Bachmann’s campaign was, at best, erratic. A few months ago, she suddenly surged in the polls. Before we knew it, the congresswoman was considered “the anti-Romney candidate.” Right at the moment she surged, however, she began to make gaffe after gaffe. Voters and the media immediately understood that she was out of her league. This was not the American version of the Iron Lady, Margaret Thatcher.

Her performance in Iowa was nevertheless disappointing. Of all the active contenders she finished dead last (just before Jon Huntsman, who didn’t even campaign in Iowa). If she wants to continue her career in Congress, she’d better drop out. Every minute spent on the campaign trail after yesterday will only hurt her chances of playing an important role in the GOP in years coming.

As Bryan wrote immediately after the results were announced, she really has no rationale for staying in. She’d better go home, to Minnesota, and talk to her own voters back home, to ensure her another term in Congress.

In the meantime, since Rick Perry is also considering to quit, this could very well become a horse race between Mitt Romney… and Newt Gingrich. The latter will undoubtedly be thrilled with this news, because most of Bachmann’s supporters and those of Perry will undoubtedly side with him now.

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Team Romney is Confident – and Rightly So

Monday, January 2nd, 2012 - by Michael van der Galien

The Daily Beast reports that Team Romney is beaming with confidence. For instance, staffers and even Mitt Romney’s wife Ann are talking about what he will do when, not if, he’s president.

“We’re in a completely different stage,” Stuart Stevens, Romney’s senior strategist and image consultant, argued to a couple of reporters in the back of a meeting hall in Council Bluffs, Iowa, Sunday evening, as his shirt-sleeved, blue-jeaned candidate mingled briskly with likely caucus-goers. “I haven’t seen polling on this, but most Republicans think Obama is going to lose. And most of these people”—he gestured at the crowd—“think Mitt Romney’s going to be the next president. So a lot of people are coming to see somebody who’s going to be the next president.”

The author of the piece then wonders whether the Romney-ites aren’t playing with fire. ‘But, wait a minute, wasn’t that dangerous talk before actual voters have actually voted? Wasn’t the former Massachusetts governor’s guru tempting the vengeful gods of politics by venturing into territory once occupied by Mark Penn? Hillary Clinton’s 2008 “chief strategist” preached the doctrine of inevitability, only to be accused of arrogance and proven beyond all doubt to be less than impressive in the prophecy department.’

Well no. These examples aren’t even remotely comparable.

When Clinton was running, those who hated her guts had to find the ‘anti-Clinton’ candidate. They found him in Barack Obama. This was a guy they could all unite behind.

In the case of Romney, however, the opposite is true: the conservative base has tried to find a good alternative (several times even), but has failed to do so time and again. Bachmann, Gingrich, Perry; they all surged in the polls, only to fall back to rock bottom once their records and knowledge were scrutinized.

What this means? Simple: Romney should be able to win. And once he’s the Republican nominee, he should very well be able to make life very difficult indeed for Obama, whose poll numbers aren’t exactly brag-worthy.

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Ron Paul Makes a Fool of Himself – and His Supporters

Saturday, December 24th, 2011 - by Michael van der Galien

You’ve got to love Ron Paul. The libertarian congressman from Texas has always been the odd one out. Nobody has ever taken him seriously – and, considering his ideas, quite logically so.

Although every rational commentator finds it more than appropriate that Paul is pretty much ignored by the mainstream media – or was ignored by them – Paul himself sadly disagrees. He has pumped millions into Iowa, hoping to win this non-contested state; he’s airing attack ads aimed at Newt Gingrich, accusing his rival of “hypocrisy,” and his little minions are swarming all over the Internet in an attempt to sell his libertarian gospel to voters.

When you’re begging the media for attention, chances are they will eventually give it to you.

And that took Paul somewhat by surprise.

When he was asked by CNN about his racist email newsletter, Paul simply tore off his microphone and walked away, arguing that this was the umptiest time they asked about it, and that he had had enough.

Paul got testy at this point and responded “I never read it, I was aware of it ten years after it was written…CNN does this every single time.”

Borger asked rhetorically whether the repeated questions were “legitimate.”

Paul finished off the exchange with “When you get the answer, it’s legitimate you take the answers i give,” then he removed his microphone and left.

Well, dear congressman, guess what? You’re running for president. You’ve got to explain just about every single thing you ever did – or other people did in your name. The fact of the matter is that you made close to a million dollars off of your newsletter in 1993 alone. You can say you “read it occasionally,” but only the extremely naive would actually take your word for it. Especially because you failed to distance yourself from the racist content of these newsletters, until you were forced to do so by those darned, critical journalists.

The funny thing? Instead of “teaching the media a lesson,” you’ve actually taught observers all they need to know about you. Thanks, I guess.

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Why Gingrich Won’t Beat Obama

Friday, December 16th, 2011 - by Michael van der Galien

When watching yesterday’s debate in Iowa, I was struck by Newt Gingrich’s strong answers. His rise in the polls came suddenly, surprising not just the other candidates but even Gingrich himself, yet he showed no sign of being nervous. He jumped on every opportunity to rip President Obama and to defend his record. It was the behavior and attitude of a guy with great confidence in himself and in his debating skills.

The former Speaker of the House compared himself several times to President Ronald Reagan yesterday (as he has done throughout the campaign). He worked with the 40th president, he argued, and learned a lot from him. In many ways, he’d like voters to believe, he even resembles Reagan.

Well, like Reagan, Gingrich is indeed quite feisty. He’s willing to take the fight to his opponents and their (progressive) ideology. However, there are also a few major differences, the most important of which are:
1. Reagan clearly had a conservative record, Gingrich does not.
2. Reagan was a very likable guy, Gingrich is anything but.

The second point should not be underestimated. Gingrich is a great debater, but it’s incredibly difficult to actually like him. That will be a problem in the national elections, when he has to take on a president who is liked (although voters don’t think too highly of his policies). Independents who aren’t sure whom to vote for always end up voting for the candidate they sympathize with most, which means that the Independent vote will go to Obama, if Gingrich is his opponent.

As we all know, you can only win when Independents are behind you. Gingrich, then, is destined to lose.

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The Democratic Party: The Party Of, By And For The Rich

Thursday, December 15th, 2011 - by Michael van der Galien

Yes, you read that right: the Democratic Party is a party of, by and for millionaires. You know whom I’m talking about: those money-hungry bankers who care only about their own wallets and who couldn’t care less about the financial well being of John Doe.

That is, at least, undoubtedly how Democrats would’ve lashed out at Republicans if the roles were reversed:

In what would be a major concession, President Obama and Senate Democrats will drop their insistence that a surtax on millionaires pay for extending the payroll tax cut, a Democratic source tells CNN. This would be part of a new Democratic offer.

Obviously, this is somewhat of a victory for the Republican Party. However, since Democrats let no opportunity to bash ‘the rich’ go wasted, we can now reach only one conclusion: their hatred for the rich isn’t heartfelt, it’s all part of the political game. They believed that jealousy was a winner electorally. Now that they realize that elections are coming up next year and now that Republicans actually seem to be able to withstand the left-wing pressure, they quickly cave in and do a completely turnaround.

Conservatives often accuse Republican congressmen and senators of having no spine. Well, Democrats aren’t much better. The only difference is that we should be grateful for that this time.

By the way: wouldn’t it be awesome if at least one Republican candidate (mind you: for congress, not for president of course) would attack Democrats for being in bed with Wall Street? That would be a pretty sight to behold, wouldn’t it?

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