This week, Jesse Kelly of syndicated radio and First TV fame joins the podcast to talk about the forces destroying the U.S. military from the top down and bottom up, as well as President Biden’s angry speech. Jesse lays out an even more pessimistic than usual case against the country’s future, and Inez is forced to play optimist. Jesse and Inez discuss humor in the face of scary times.

High Noon is an intellectual download featuring conversations that make possible a free society. The podcast features interesting thinkers from all parts of the political spectrum to discuss the most controversial subjects of the day in a way that hopes to advance our common American future. Hosted by Inez Stepman of Independent Women’s Forum.


TRANSCRIPT

Inez Stepman:

Welcome to High Noon, where we talk about controversial subjects with interesting people. And my guest this week is famous community college dropout and burger enthusiast, Jesse Kelly. But aside from those titles, he’s also the host of the nationally syndicated “Jesse Kelly Show” on radio, the aptly titled “I’m Right on The First” TV. He also joined the Marines in 2000. He was deployed during the war, which is part of why I want to talk to him, especially today, about the state of the US military, which of course was once the last institution that both was granted and was deserving of the trust of the American people, and that seems to be falling apart. But welcome to High Noon, Jesse.

Jesse Kelly:

Oh, it’s a pleasure. And actually, I just need to correct you on one quick thing here; maker of the best burger on the planet, the best burger on the planet. It’s important that the world famous Jesse Kelly burger gets the respect it deserves, Inez.

Inez Stepman:

Yeah. All of these jokes, it’s funny, and maybe this is something I’m going to ask you about at this point, but these jokes I introduced you with and this kind of bantery thing that you always do, it seems so out of step with the mood of the country, but maybe that’s what makes it necessary.

We’re recording today. This is a day after President Biden just gave a speech in which he denounced millions of his fellow Americans as essentially outside of the body politic, with a red backdrop behind him and uniformed Marines behind him. You’ve long been criticized for … I remember the piece you wrote way back in the day for The Federalist, basically saying that this country is splitting apart, and we have to take seriously the question of national divorce or civil war. When you listened to that speech yesterday, what were you thinking? Was it basically, “I’m right,” or does it give you sort of pause that this really … I mean, this seems to be getting extremely real.

Jesse Kelly:

It’s been real. And that’s the thing. You mentioned that piece I wrote about how and why American needs to get a divorce. We need to split up as a country. I wrote that back in 2018, and then and now, I’m not celebrating that. I mean, you asked what I was thinking when I watched last night. I wasn’t shocked. This is how these people think. It’s not isolated to Joe Biden, either. I really want people to get that through their heads. Your FBI thinks exactly like that. The people who educate your children in colleges, they think exactly like that. There’s a good chance your doctor thinks exactly like that.

We are two different countries now. And the other side is extremely hostile to you because there’s a real Marxist communist bent to them. And we have to go our separate ways, or it is going to be very, very, very ugly. Joe Biden had the Marines flanking him last night. And so I saw so many people on the right, and I understand this old school way of thinking and kind of patriotic way of thinking, that so many people on the right were saying things like, “Wow, the military would never” … Yes, they would. If Joe Biden told them to send that F-15 to your home and reduce it to rubble, they would, without hesitation.

You do not understand the leadership of the military right now. And even worse, you don’t understand the new guys. Yes, there’s a long established group of NCOs in the military who would never. But believe me, the leaders would, and the brand new guys would. I get emails all the time from military guys. It is that serious. So I wasn’t sitting there patting myself on the back. I was shrugging my shoulders saying, “Yeah, I told you.” And also sad, if I’m being honest; not thrilled about the situation, but it is what it is.

Inez Stepman:

It’s an interesting way of putting it. So we’ve seen increasingly the top brass in the military, not only are they seemingly embarrassed about their various incompetencies, like during the withdrawal of Afghanistan, it cost American lives. But they seem much more comfortable throwing in publicly in politics. Now, of course, the top brass in the military has always been political, right? And one could argue that it’s inherently so, but it does seem like … especially some of these reports of generals, for example, under the last administration, communicating with China, trying to circumvent the elected president on foreign policy decisions, essentially. Let’s take those two problems one at a time. So what has happened to the top tier of the military? And then we’ll get to the people coming in from the bottom.

Jesse Kelly:

Well, one, there’s something you learned very early on, especially as an enlisted guy when you’re in the military, I was in the Marines, as you pointed out, is that anybody who stays in longer than one enlistment, one four-year term, or however short they’re doing them now, the second someone re-ups and stays in longer, probably not somebody you should trust anyway, because now if he has to make a decision whether to throw you under the bus or keep his paycheck and make sure his wife and kids eat, he’s going to choose his wife and kids over you. So that inherently, that’s just part of the nature of it anyway. But what’s happened to the officer corps is frankly what’s happened to most of America, something you talk about often, and I love it that you do. It’s really an education system problem.

People, especially people who haven’t served, they see these generals and all the stars and all the ribbons and metals, and, “Oh, my goodness.” But really what you’re seeing is somebody who was also filtered through the dirty jock strap of the university system of this country. And so he emerged … even from military academies, you can minor in gender and diversity studies at West Point right now. They’re all filtered through these horrible universities. And they naturally come out of there thinking communism is not that bad, and the right wing of the country, they’re most definitely domestic terrorists are potentially domestic terrorists.

And so that gets you what you have now. It’s taken years for them to get to this point. Obama did a lot of this. He was really, really good at it. To his credit, he was a worthy enemy. I hate him, but he was a worthy enemy. Barack Obama walked into the Oval Office, and unlike every loser Republican we have, he looked at his military and said, “You’re fired, you’re fired, you’re fired, you’re fired.” He ran something like a hundred-some flagged officers out right away. Why? So he could install people loyal to him. And Joe Biden is now enjoying the fruits of that.

Inez Stepman:

Yeah. The latest example of this was reported in the Washington Free Beacon, U.S. Pacific Air Forces, I believe, that the purpose of that force is to confront China in the Pacific, ordered its leadership to stop using gender pronouns in written formats because, “It’ll improve the lethality of the force to do so.” So that’s the latest example of this on the top. But what about the bottom? You said basically that folks are coming through universities, that essentially they’re subject to all the same cultural indoctrination as the other parts.

But I mean, isn’t there still … the core of the military is still … I mean, America actually has, what is it, a specific sub-marshal families, right, marshal tradition in families. So for example, I can’t remember what the number was, it was some absurd percent like 30% or 40% or 50% of the military recruitment comes from basically South Carolina and Texas. There’s certainly these old military families where every new generation, usually of sons, goes into the military. I mean, there’s got to be a lot of these people still in the military.

Jesse Kelly:

No.

Inez Stepman:

I mean, how does it impact them when the military’s running these kinds of recruitment ads or whatever, about gender pronouns and stuff?

Jesse Kelly:

No, they’re not still in the military. Now there are some, yes, of course, but there’s not a lot. And they’re leaving. You brought up actually one of the most devastating things out there right now, the generational military families. You dig into a lot of the people who’ve won medals of honor, led men in combat, oftentimes it’s, “My dad served. My grandpa served. My great-grandpa served.” Those have been our legacy families, the ones who’ve kept this nation safe.

Inez, I cannot tell you how many emails … I’m looking at stacks of them right now, stacks of them from families just like that saying, “I served, my uncle did, my grandpa, my great-grandpa. My son will not. My son will not. My son’s going a different place.” The reason the bottom is getting so bad too is not just because of who’s joining, it’s because of who’s not.

I speak often about the purge of the military. There’s two purges going on right now. There’s a hard purge and a soft purge. The hard purge, this is very intentional, very brilliant, by the way, to have a vaccine mandate on the military, the vaccine that wears off in about 15 minutes, ends with having these guys going down with cardiac arrests. Okay, well, who’s refusing the vaccine? People on the right. Is there a single Democrat in the military right now saying no to that vaccine? Of course not. They’re all going to take it. Everyone on the right, everyone who’s getting kicked out because of the vaccine mandate, that’s a political opponent of the communists in the country. So they’re gone. That’s the hard purge.

Now, we get to the soft purges, which is what you just talked about. There’s two parts to this. One, there’s the guys who are in, the studs, who you just pointed out, and they’re getting out. You go make some stud whose grandpa fought in World War II and his dad fought in Vietnam, and he’s a real hardcore dude, you go make him sit down through enough seminars where he has to … “Can’t say him, her, and she and she, and white people suck,” he’s going to leave and go do something else. They are. They’re getting out. I get these emails all the time.

And the second part of the soft purge is who’s not joining. And this is the part that’s unquantifiable. People are seeing these headlines out there now about recruiting, and recruiting’s down, they’re meeting half of their recruiting goals. Dig into it a little deeper and you’ll discover something. What’s hurting the recruiting? Why aren’t they meeting their recruiting goals? They’re not meeting their recruiting goals because the rural America, they’re not sending their sons. The South won’t join, Wyoming won’t join, Montana won’t join, because the parents have eyes, and they see.

And so that 17-year-old stud from Louisiana who talks a little bit funny, but if you dropped him in the woods, you’d come back a week later and he’d have a house built and he’d be eating squirrels, which he just shot, he wins your wars for you. And he’s not joining to serve with trans people. And he’s not joining to find out how evil he is to be white. He’s simply going to go do something else. That 17-year-old wrestler, an Iowa state champion, he wins your wars for you. He doesn’t want to go serve with a bunch of gay people. He’s going to go do something else. That’s the second part of the soft purge, and it’s happening right now. Right now, your military is evaporating from underneath you, and people do not know.

Inez Stepman:

So why is it that military families seem to understand this and understand the nature of the transformation of the institutions? Because here, I’m thinking about conservatives who are still seemingly unable to let go of let alone of the integrity of the country, but even the umbilical cord that they have to the Ivy League, for example. I mean, it’s a very small percentage of conservatives who would say what you just said military families are saying about their own children, right, that they actually don’t want their children to go to Harvard, they don’t want their children to go into the university system. Even though they acknowledge that that university system is overwhelmingly cultural indoctrination, they still want their kids to do the best in life. And that’s an understandable impulse. So why is it that there’s such an immediate impact in military families, whereas one would think it’s actually a smaller deal, right, to send your kid for four years to a university? And maybe that’s part of it. But why do they get it, and the rest of the right does not?

Jesse Kelly:

Well, the right never gets it, Inez. The right hasn’t gotten it for a long time. And look, what you just pointed out is much more than a university problem. It’s actually the problem we face in the country. We know we have in charge of us now a group of hardcore anti-American communists, who want to bring the country to its knees. That’s not being over the top. That’s what they are. The biggest problem is waking up your neighbor, my neighbor, who agrees with me on all the issues, and making him or her realize that’s what’s happening right now. And you see it when these parents send their kids to college. It blows me away, Inez.

We have a very close neighborhood. Everyone’s real close; guns, get together 4th of July, fireworks, crawfish boils, and all that stuff. And I get together with these guys. And they obviously know what I do, and so politics eventually comes up. And we’re talking about politics, and I mean, right down the line, right there with you, right there with me on everything, Inez. You’d fit in just fine. But then the next breath it’ll be, “Oh, I can’t believe Aiden got into Stanford. I’m so proud of him. Woo-hoo. Go Aiden.” And the other guy across the hall, “Oh, I know. I’m so proud of Amber. She’s going to Harvard. I’m so excited.”

And I sit there and my jaw just falls open. You’ve spent 18 years raising somebody you adore, giving them your values, turning this person into someone who’s ready to be a productive adult. And you are going to pay $250,000 now to send her off to a communist training camp where she will be taught to hate you and hate herself and hate her country? And not only are you doing it, you’re bragging about it.

I will never get it. Actually, I get so frustrated, so this may not be right, I get so frustrated that I’ve come up with a … My thing is I think they’re being selfish. I think it’s a selfish thing. I think it’s not about their kids. I don’t think they send their kids to Harvard because they think it’s best. I think deep down they know it’s wrong. I think they send Aiden to Harvard so they can go brag to their neighbors about it, “Aiden got into Harvard. Look how good I look.” It’s like the middle-aged guy buying a Corvette. That’s what I think it is.

Inez Stepman:

Yeah. I mean, there’s certainly a lot of truth to that. I grew up in Palo Alto, and that’s definitely the inter-parent competition. Actually, I’m wondering at what point to bring up this bone I have to pick with you, because you use the word communist a lot. And it’s not that I’m shocked by this word or think that in fact there aren’t elements that are quite similar of our current system to the Soviet Union, but there are also a lot of elements that are really different. And it doesn’t seem to me to be a really good description of the ideology, even though I see the sort of intellectual heritage from Marxism. But it seems to me that in fact the private aspect of this, the sort of public-private melding and the structure of the regime, are so different that using the word communist actually doesn’t get at the heart of what we’re facing or the structure of the regime that we live in. I feel like it’s almost like an anachronistic word.

Jesse Kelly:

Well, a couple things. One, I think we probably have different definitions of the religion, communism. You probably still go by the dictionary definition about the workers and all this other crap they try to sell people. Communism has nothing to do with eliminating private property or any of these things. And it’s not that. It’s never been that. Communism is the worship of death and destruction. It is a religion. It is a religion. It’s about finding the cracks in a society, filling it up with water, and then freezing them so you can break a society apart. And so when the Soviets brought communism here, they tried to do the same thing they did there, try to appeal to the workers, because as you well know, you know all this stuff, Inez, the Soviet working class, the urban poor had it crappy. That’s an easier sell to them, so that’s what they were selling there.

They tried to bring that here. Didn’t work. They could never get a foothold because our workers have an outstanding standard of living here in America. So they wrote about this. They openly wrote about this. I think this was the ’70s and ’80s. They wrote about, “Okay, well, we need to change our communism here.” It’s all about that Frankfurt school stuff: “We can’t do this worker crap. That won’t work.” Those aren’t the cracks in America.

What are the cracks in America? They have to seek out those cracks. And they found the cracks here, and that’s why we have cultural Marxism now. What were our cracks? That they infiltrated the civil rights movement immediately, the feminist movement immediately. They recognized very early on the climate change death cultists were perfect for them. They soon morphed that into all this LGBTQ insanity. These are society’s malcontents in America. These are our cracks. These are the ones we can fill up with water and freeze. It is communism. That’s exactly what it’s always been.

Inez Stepman:

But the structure is so different [inaudible 00:16:52]-

Jesse Kelly:

They just had to appeal to different people here.

Inez Stepman:

No, but I understand that the evolution into the Frankfurt school, intellectually, and you’re definitely right that the fissures in American society were always on boundaries primarily of race. I actually even wouldn’t even include between the sexes. I think that’s a more modern phenomenon. But definitely the Achilles heel of America has always been race and racial divisions, and the Soviet Union exploited that during the Cold War as well. And the left has played with those divisions, like a toddler with a flame thrower.

But I think the structure is different. It’s not that there isn’t some intellectual heritage. It’s that what we see around us today has changed so much from traditional Marxism. For example, the fact that there is this cultural collusion between private entities, the fact that our own system now … So, we have First Amendment rights and corporations have First Amendment rights. And one of the problems that our own system now is supporting is that when you end up with, as you say, going through the … what is it that you said, the jock strap, training through the jock strap of the university system … When you have an entire class of people in both public and private who believe these things, they no longer need a kind of top down government system. And that seems to me to be quite different than the Soviet Union and quite different than intellectual Marxism or whatever, even if one takes into account how it was actually practiced in communist countries.

You can say we’re moving more towards what China has, but even China, I mean, now they’re trying to go back to some principles of socialism or whatever, but throughout the ’90s and two 2000s, they really did abandon, largely to our detriment … If they had kept practicing communism, they wouldn’t be nearly as economically powerful as they are today. And what I fear is that actually our version of this tyrannical sort of ideas that do back the structure of our regime, in some ways, it’s not as brittle. In some ways, it’s more brittle. I don’t know, it just seems fundamentally different to me. I mean, the Soviet Union had borders and taught math.

Jesse Kelly:

Well, you view the government and entertainment and education and media and things like that as being … Well, I shouldn’t put words in your mouth. I think taking it from you, you view those as being separate entities. I do not. I view them as being one. They’re all one now. I call it the system, but that’s just a word for it. You can call it the regime. I’ve heard it called a million different things. They’re all together now. We used to have separate cultural pillars. We had entertainment. We had religion. Sports is an important part of culture. Education, government. These are the pillars that hold up a society.

And they’re supposed to be separate, so one can keep another in check. If Joe Biden gets up and gives a speech threatening to send F-15s after Americans, you should have an education system. You should have professors coming out the next day saying that’s wrong. You should have sports stars coming out next day and saying, “That’s wrong. I stand against this.” You never hear any of that now because they’re all one. They’ve all melded into one now. So I don’t view them as being separate. When I have to turn on the television during Pride month and have my sons be waterboarded with just 8,000 kilowatts of gayness coming through the TV, I don’t look at that and consider that being any different than the government pushing it at all. You seized all the pillars and now you’re using them all against me, because you hate me. And that’s fine. I hate you back.

Inez Stepman:

So I think it matters for purposes of resistance. What the shape of a successful pushback looks like depends on the structure of what it is. And actually, I think what you’re describing would be a somewhat easier thing to deal with. If it really truly was the government essentially directing all of these different pillars, which it does to some extent, but I think it’s like a spontaneous collusion, because [inaudible 00:21:00]-

Jesse Kelly:

I didn’t say government-directed.

Inez Stepman:

… stuff starts to make sense.

Jesse Kelly:

I didn’t say government-directed. There’s a hive mind. It’s just all one big hive mind. They all go to the same schools. They all think the same things. They hang out in the same circles, all of them. I mean, it’s just all one gigantic revolving door circle. You go right from MSNBC to communications for Congressman Jerkoff’s office, right back into the White House. Maybe then you do a stint at Harvard. Maybe you even get a little job in Hollywood for six months. They all think the same thing. They say the same things. They talk to the same people. They consume the same news. It’s not that government directs these people. They’re all working for the communist hive mind. What does the communist hive mind want? Same thing communists have always wanted, death and destruction. That’s why they destroy everything.

This is what I differ from a lot of people on the right. I don’t think there’s some super genius group of government people sitting in a back room as we speak, smoking cigars, with some grand plan for a step-by-step on how they’re going to destroy us. Most of these people are far too stupid and inept for that. They just wake up every single day, and like your lawnmower, they just consume the two inches in front of its face. And in the end, they turn around and everything’s destroyed. These people hate America, all of these people, everyone. And actually, every entity I just described, from education, to government, to entertainment, to all of them, they all have the same three things in common now, every single one of them. I say this all the time.

One, there’s no love of country. Oftentimes they hate it, but it’s more important to actually understand there’s no love of country. When you see people on the right say things like, “Why would Joe Biden want to … why would he want to wreck the military? That could hurt America.” Joe Biden doesn’t give a crap about America. Just because people on the right are patriotic, they automatically put that on people on the left and assume that those value systems are shared. Just because you wake up and think about America and care about America, America never crosses these people’s minds. It doesn’t cross their mind. That’s not how they’ve been raised. Most of them hate the place, but the ones who don’t, they don’t think about it.

Two, second thing they have in common, they have no relation to anyone who lives a normal life, nobody. Whether you are a farmer, a rancher, a plumber, whether you’re an accountant, a lawyer, these people don’t have any idea how normal people live. They go right from rich upbringings, all of them, right into some fancy university, right into the Congressman Jerkwater’s office, and then Hollywood and CNN and things like that.

And the third thing is these people believe they should rule as kings and queens. And this is not unique to America. This is all Western leaders now. They look at all the freedoms of the West and they despise them. They despise limits on their power. They think they’re absurd. They think they should rule as kings and queens above these peasants, because then they can lead the world where they should go. They don’t look at the freedom of the West and love it. They look at it and they speak about it with such disdain. Biden himself has said it, but he’s not alone. They say the word freedom now like they’re trying to spit out a dog turd: “Oh, freedom.” That’s how the Western leaders view freedom now.

Inez Stepman:

Yeah. I mean, what’s his name, Thomas Friedman … was it Thomas Friedman who said, “Oh, I wish we could be China for a day, because we can deal with climate change”? So I understand the attitude you’re referencing. Let me ask this. So you’ve essentially given up on healing this country or moving forward in a way that keeps it together without violence [inaudible 00:24:36]. You don’t think that there’s still a chance to rearrange some of these items structurally, right? And here, I’m talking about some of the either the educational reforms or rearranging the power of the administrative state, some of these more structural reforms.

Because it seems like, for example, Governor DeSantis in Florida is starting to really make some headway within the state. And Florida was not a deep red state. And I guarantee you that the department of education in Florida and all the bureaucrats who work in it and all of that, those folks, they think the same way as they do on national level. It’s not something particularly special about Florida, I don’t think, just that they had an executive that actually looked at the system structurally, said, “Okay, here are the elements that are powerful and hate me and hate the people that voted for me. I’m going to rearrange this in a more substantive way than just a superficial thing about taxes, or about whatever else.” You don’t think that can be done on the national level?

Jesse Kelly:

No, no. There’s no healing the country. No, we’re not going to heal the country. Now, I do not think violence is inevitable, and I hope to God it never comes. But nationally, there is no healing. There’s no healing to be done. We hate each other. And we should, by the way. You should despise the communists. Even if you don’t hate individuals, you should hate what’s happening right now. They definitely hate you. But that doesn’t mean that all is lost or all is hopeless.

You just brought up Florida. There are so many wonderful local pockets and state pockets left in this country where, if we’re smart and we’re aggressive and we’re diligent, we can grow something. Your kids aren’t going to have the exact same life you had or same country you had, but they can have something that looks very, very, very similar to it, if we’re smart and if we’re aggressive. But right now, we’re not. Yeah, Heavy D’s done some wonderful things in Florida. And I’m happy about it.

But the GOP should be right now organizing the red states together to purge ESG from its borders, purge DEI from its borders, purge critical race theory. I don’t mean one state at a time. Together, they should be doing these things. They should be running all climate change insanity out the door. Instead, even states like Texas are embracing this kind of stuff. They should be building their own economies, including internet servers, from the ground up. I’m talking separate economies from the one that’s national, preparing themselves for a federal system that is entirely hostile to them. And if you can’t see that the federal system is entirely hostile and coming for you right now, well, honestly, go join Stevie Wonder.

Inez Stepman:

So I guess I’m pretty cynical, but not quite as pessimistic as you, because I do think … So for example, take something specific like the FBI and DOJ, and the political weaponization of those agencies. That is something that can be addressed with … if we got somebody with enough balls in to do it, it can be addressed. And you don’t have to throw out every single person from the FBI. All you have to do is go after and fire, at minimum, if not prosecute, people who have abused their power, and then fire anybody who refuses to carry out the orders of the elected president and the policy of the elected president.

Now, that requires a change in our civil service laws, a change that’s overdue by 100 years, but it is possible. It’s not impossible. That problem is not impossible. And I also don’t think … If you make enough examples in terms of … you can just fire a bunch of people. You can fire 100 people, and I guarantee you, the next 1,000 people who work for the DOJ will be … they may have all the same views as they do now, but they’ll be a lot quieter about them, and they’ll be a lot more careful about doing their jobs.

Jesse Kelly:

I think I’m going to be a billionaire, Inez, and all I need … Fuck, all I need is to win the Powerball, and then I’ll be a billionaire. That’s what you just said when you said, “Well, we should fire all these people. Granted, we have to change the civil service laws.” Why would the communists, who we would need to change the civil service laws, why would they ever agree to change a single civil service law when we now have a federal government, 95% made up of communists? They would never.

Inez Stepman:

We don’t need them. No, not [inaudible 00:28:59]. No, no, no. We don’t. We wouldn’t need them. I mean, we would need a leadership in the Republican party that understands what’s going on [inaudible 00:29:07]-

Jesse Kelly:

Which we don’t have either.

Inez Stepman:

Yeah, but that’s what worries me, but it’s not because I think it’s impossible. It’s not that it’s theoretically impossible. It’s just that we don’t have the right leadership. And by the way, even that can change quite quickly. Because again, I guarantee you, within Florida, the Republicans are just as squishy as they are everywhere else. The difference is they had leadership that basically told them, “You’re going to vote this way on these important things, or we’re going to run a primary opponent, and I’ll endorse him.” It was pretty hard knuckle politics there in Florida, but it’s not impossible. I can imagine a president doing the same thing, even with the scared bunny rabbits of the Republican party in the Senate, say, “Hey, you’re going to vote on this package of things that includes civil service laws. If you need to nuke the filibuster to do it, you’re going to do that. And if you don’t, I am going to endorse a primary opponent, and I’m going to run against you. And I’m the leader of the party. And I will politically screw you.” These are things that could be done.

Jesse Kelly:

No, they couldn’t. And even if Heavy D tried to do something like that … let’s go with the 15 Republicans who just joined with the Democrats to restrict your gun rights. They would line up with the Democrats and impeach the Republican president, the same way some lined up with them and impeached the last Republican president twice. If you were a Republican president, let’s say Trump, Heavy D, whoever it is, and you tried to do the necessary things you need to do to clean out the rot within the system, you would be impeached if not assassinated, and that’s not being over the top. You would be. There’s no question about it. When you have this level of rotted filth at the top, one man isn’t going in and cleaning something out, and he’s going to threaten chocolate milk Mitt Romney with a primary, and that’ll solve things. That is an old school, frankly, with all due respect, pie-in-the-sky way of looking at exactly what the problem is.

The FBI cannot continue to exist. And right now, there are about five Republicans who will say that. We have this standard GOP line, “If we could just clean out a few and take out the management.” Inez, if I have a company of 100 people and the president’s a scumbag and all the vice presidents are scumbags and all the managers are scumbags and the middle managers are scumbags, but I have four good guys in the mail room, I don’t have a good company that needs some changing. The company can’t exist anymore. It must go away. It is beyond salvage. But we will again try to do this thing where we’re acting like we’re in some kind of negotiation here with people in good faith. And we can run right up to the line of what’s appropriate and kind of do this a little bit, and we’ll work this thing out. Just a couple tweaks, we’ll work it out in the end. That is not where we are.

The reason we are here is because we’ve constantly run up to this raging inferno and thrown a glass of water on it and acted like that actually did something. The FBI cannot exist any longer. When you have a Federal Bureau of Investigation doing the things its done, it must be broken into 1,000 pieces and scattered to the winds. But the standard Republican line will be, “Wow. We’ve just got some bad guys at the top. We’ll change out one or two,” and then they’ll be stunned in about four years when all the same stuff happens, because we don’t just have a few bad guys at the top. I have an email right here from an FBI special agent. I can’t say his name, because he’s now a whistleblower with a senator I hooked him up with. The things he put in this email about what’s going on at the FBI would make your skin crawl. It’s not one or two guys at the top. It’s bad.

Inez Stepman:

That’s not my suggestion, that it’s one or two guys at the top. My suggestion is that if you … I’m wondering how much violent metaphor to employ in this subject, but that if heads roll in the top, in fact … See, I guess what I think about these folks, and I talked with this about … Emily with Emily Jashinsky in the last episode of this podcast, is they don’t think they are ideological. And you alluded to it earlier when you said it’s not about a couple guys cackling in the government, right? They don’t believe they are ideological. They don’t see their own ideological priors. But I do think they’re self-interested. And I think if there’s a very real threat that they will immediately lose their jobs, if not be prosecuted for any crimes they’ve committed, I do think people will change their behavior. You don’t think that people are self-interested enough to change their behavior?

Jesse Kelly:

I don’t think anyone’s going to make them do that. Who’s going to do that? Kevin Clinesmith just lied to the FISA corps to get a warrant to spy on the political opponent of Barack Obama. Kevin Clinesmith is not only not in Fort Leavenworth for the rest of his life, he is back practicing law and making a fortune. And that took place under a Republican president, with a Republican AG handling all these things. There’s no mechanism in place to oppose the communists. And until I see that mechanism, I will not believe that there is anything nationally that could be done against the communists, because I don’t see anyone willing to do it.

Inez Stepman:

So, I mean, I agree, but I guess the difference is I think there are things that can be changed. My question is simply … I guess the difference between us is I believe we can change them. I think that even Republican politicians are ultimately malleable. A lot of these people [inaudible 00:34:19]-

Jesse Kelly:

[inaudible 00:34:19].

Inez Stepman:

… they’re not ideologically dug in where they are. They’re just stuck in a mentality that has bears no resemblance to the way that the world actually works in front of them. And I think if there is some very aggressive leadership at the top of the party, I think you’ll see it change. And my evidence for that is it has in Florida. And it’s not specifically about Ron DeSantis, although I think he has been a really good governor. But you think that Republicans in Florida are somehow more dug in, or more based, or whatever you want to call it, than Republicans on the national level?

I don’t think so. I mean, at least from the work that I’ve done with education and stuff, Florida was a leader on ed, but I mean, most of the Republican party folks that I was talking to, they had all the same establishment mentalities, all the same … blah, blah, blah. Let’s not forget that Marco Rubio came out of there, Jeb Bush came out of there, right? It’s not something special in the water in Florida. It’s that there’s a quite aggressive leader of the party there, and he’s essentially getting his folks in line through sheer political … I’ll call it persuasion.

Jesse Kelly:

Something I’ll push back on you on that you’ve said a couple times now is you said, “These people are not ideological,” like some middle of the road FBI guy or whatever.

Inez Stepman:

No, no.

Jesse Kelly:

I would argue that that’s very much not the case. Now, I would argue that he doesn’t think he’s ideological.

Inez Stepman:

Right, that’s what I was saying. I think they are ideological, but I think they don’t see themselves ideologically.

Jesse Kelly:

Well, that’s part of what makes it so damaging, Inez. That’s part of what makes it so damaging. Because I can separate politics in life, I can show up at one of those neighborhood parties I talked about, and I understand I’m not going to bring up abortion unless it comes up, because I understand that’s me being political. I don’t want to be political. I don’t want to make someone uncomfortable. Let’s have a couple Bud heavies and enjoy the show.

The Democrat, we do have one or two in our neighborhood, they very rarely get invited now because they will show up, without hesitation, “Can you believe Roe v. Wade? Trump’s such an evil jerk.” They’re not being political. To them, that’s simply right versus wrong. These people don’t set their religion aside. That’s why I call it a religion. Yeah, they’re all religious. They’re all committed to it. They all think they’re the good guy, every single one of them. And that’s part of what makes it so damaging. Right now, all those scumbag that the DOJ who sicked the FBI counterterrorism heads on school board parents, they’re not sitting around right now as we talk thinking about what scumbags they are, how they’re evil communists. They’re sitting around thinking about how they’re saving America and how they’re the good guys. That’s why they’re so bad.

Inez Stepman:

Yeah, no. I agree with the fact that they don’t see their own ideological priors, but I also think that there are differences between committed revolutionaries and people who imbibe it in the water. And in the latter case, I think the threat of losing your job and your status and your ability to put food on the table is usually more than enough to stop people. I see what you’re saying, that it’s difficult to do-

Jesse Kelly:

Hold on [inaudible 00:37:20]-

Inez Stepman:

… but it is possible to change the law and fire these people.

Jesse Kelly:

Losing your job? Who lost their job? Where’s Peter Strzok today? Where’s Kevin Clinesmith today? That Tim Thibault, the guy who just-

Inez Stepman:

There aren’t paying positions at MSNBC if we fire 1,000 FBI agents. There just aren’t.

Jesse Kelly:

Inez, come on. You’re well aware of the vast quantities of dark money out there with left wing groups, entertainment. Doesn’t have to be MSNBC and CNN, the university system. There is an endless, a limitless supply of readily available good careers waiting for the FBI agent who stands up like a good little communist and maybe gets himself fired. Tim Thibault just retired after 25 years, to no prison time. He’ll walk out of there with his $80,000 a year pension right into a $300,000-a-year job teaching ethics at Harvard. And I’m probably only half joking. I bet that’s where he’ll be.

Inez Stepman:

No, I can see that as a totally plausible scenario. Yeah, that’s not only a joke. Actually, I’d like to close this out by asking you how you keep your sense of humor, because you have a dark view of our future. I think you would agree with that description.

Jesse Kelly:

Oh, yeah.

Inez Stepman:

I often have a dark view of our future, but it makes me sort of melancholy and depressive. And you seem to keep your sense of humor despite this, so I’m wondering how you do that.

Jesse Kelly:

Well, this might actually come back to the Marines. There were many times when you’re in the Marines, especially the infantry, where life is just misery. It’s just misery. There’s not a better way to describe it. You’re burning hot. You’re freezing cold. You’re tired. You’re exhausted. You’re scared. Pick your thing. It’s just misery. And they put you in miserable situations on purposes, as they should. And we just always found it’s just better to laugh. I mean, what are you going to do? Sit there and you’re borderline hypothermic and you’re hallucinating because you haven’t slept in three days. What are you going to do? Cry. What good does that do anybody? We’re better off making an inappropriate joke about somebody’s mother, and let’s all laugh about the whole thing.

I can know that we’re in a very dark place while also acknowledging that this is the period of time God has given me. He didn’t ask me for a vote. He didn’t tell me, “Well, do you want to live in this period or that period?” This is the period, the 60, 70, 80 years, however long I’m here, that I’ve been given. So I’m not going to mope my way through it. Yeah, it sucks. It’s dark right now, but I’m going to laugh. And like I said before, I think locally there’s so much we can preserve and protect, and statewide, so much we can preserve and protect, if we’re smart and aggressive about it. Nationally, yeah, it sucks. And I am sad about it, to watch this happen to the country I love, the country I would die for. But it ain’t my choice. I didn’t do it.

Inez Stepman:

And I think with that, we’ll wrap it up. It’s been a pleasure, Jesse Kelly. I don’t know if pleasure is the right word, in the sense that it’s very depressing, but it has been enlightening. So thank you so much for joining High Noon.

Jesse Kelly:

Be good, Inez.

Inez Stepman:

And thank you to our listeners. High Noon with Inez Stepman is a production of the Independent Women’s Forum. As always, you can send in comments and questions to [email protected] Please help us out by hitting the subscribe button, and leaving us a comment or review on Apple Podcast, Acast, Google Play, YouTube, or iwf.org. Be brave. And we’ll see you next time on High Noon.