Nobody Believes John Kirby and Karine Jean-Pierre - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
Nobody Believes John Kirby and Karine Jean-Pierre
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre on Feb. 12, 2023 (MSNBC/YouTube)

Boy, we’ve sure got a whole host of media narratives popping about these mysterious “objects” being shot out of the skies in the northern reaches of our continent, no?

This all started with the Chinese spy balloon that was allowed to traverse the width of North America, from Alaska past the Carolinas, taking pictures and doing other things above tons of sensitive military installations last week before it was finally taken out over the Atlantic Ocean. Long before the balloon was shot down, a whole cloud of balloons of a different sort was set loose by the Biden administration.

The balloon was ordered shot down by the president on Wednesday, but it was shot down on Saturday. Why? Oh, because they didn’t want to bring it down over a populated area. Forget about the fact that there were lots of open areas it could have been brought down over before it covered the whole country.

Then we were told, thanks to an anonymous government source, that at least three such balloons penetrated U.S. airspace during the Trump administration, something that prompted a host of Trump officials, such as Robert O’Brien, John Ratcliffe, and Rick Grenell, to go on the record to throw shade on that story.

No, really, we were told later, it’s true — the filters that NORAD’s radar had been using had weeded out the detection of certain items flying around in the skies, and now that they’ve been upgraded, we know that Chinese spy balloons floated over places like Hawaii during the previous administration.

Then objects began positively filling up the skies in the past week.

On Friday, U.S. jets shot down a balloon smaller than the first one carrying a payload over the frozen Beaufort Sea north of the Alaskan coast, with the object crashing into the ice. Then on Saturday another object, said to be a “small metallic balloon with a tethered payload,” according to a military official describing it to Fox News, was shot down over Canada’s Yukon Territory.

And then on Sunday a fourth object was spotted over Montana, and we’re given to understand it was ultimately downed over Lake Huron.

Which is prompting people to ask what the hell is going on.

And since Joe Biden has nothing to say about any of this, it’s up to Karine Jean-Pierre to explain it.

How well did that go? Outstanding — other than the fact that she has no clue about what NORAD is and thinks the country to our north is Canadia.

Given the performance so far, it was time to call in the big guns — so John Kirby, who made his bones lying about military matters to the Washington press corps as a Defense Department spokesman during the Obama years, is now drafted to tell us some new stories as part of his Obama Redux administration billet. And we get this:

So, is that believable?

Well, sure. Sort of.

Clearly this is Chinese stuff. It isn’t alien stuff, though everybody associated with this mess — both the Chinese communist tyrants and the Biden administration — would love you to believe it.

Which is how we got this quote:

General Glen VanHerck was specifically asked if it’s possible the objects are indicative of extraterrestrial life.

‘I’ll let the intel community and the counterintelligence community figure that out. I haven’t ruled out anything.

‘At this point we continue to assess every threat or potential threat, unknown, that approaches North America with an attempt to identify it,’ he said.

That’s awesome, General. Thanks so much.

That led to the media persisting in UFO questions and Queen Karine delighting in answering them.

Jean-Pierre brought up the alien issue at the top of the briefing, while reading through a prepared statement.

‘And one last thing before I turn it over to you to me, I just want to make sure we address this on the White House’s questions and concerns about this,’ she said before providing her alien assurance.

‘Again, there is no indication of aliens or [extra] terrestrial activity with these recent takedowns,’ she said.

‘Wanted to make sure the American people knew that, all of you knew that, and it was important for us to say that from here, because we’ve been hearing a lot about it,’ she said.

‘I loved E.T. the movie, but I’m just going to leave it there,’ she said, to laughs from the press room.

A theory based on common sense and casual observation: The Chinese are floating these things over North America as a test of our detection and reaction capability. They now know that this administration reacts slowly and indecisively to things they don’t have a full read on — but will react to public sentiment if they’re worried they’ll appear weak. Given that China sees itself inside a window of opportunity for attacking Taiwan, with U.S. missile and other stockpiles depleted after a year of staking Ukraine in its war with Russia, those balloons are a cheap way to probe and map our air defenses in the event that they need to disable us while launching an assault on Taiwan.

Now they know a good bit about what kind of job that would be. Hopefully what they know dissuades them.

But if they’re paying attention to what our military and civilian leadership is saying publicly, they know something else: our people neither tell the truth nor lie very well, and if things get hairy, the American people will place very little credibility in our ruling elite.

And that’s a bad thing, for certain. But it’s an inevitable thing, and, in itself, it isn’t catastrophic.

What’s catastrophic isn’t that we know our leaders lack credibility. It’s that they lack credibility.

And nobody believes John Kirby and Karine Jean-Pierre when they make assurances about these objects being shot down solely because they threaten commercial aviation.

That isn’t an assertion that China is preparing an EMP strike using a balloon, or that they’re going to drop viruses on us or flood our water supply with fentanyl, or any of the other dramatic theories making their way around the World Wide Web. It’s simply an observation. We’re shooting these aircraft down because they make our government look bad, and that’s actually a legitimate reason to do it.

The Chinese, meanwhile, are accusing us of the same hot air balloon overflights while bragging about their program.

And we have very little moral ground for high dudgeon about the Chinese junk in our airspace. Not when it’s speculated that our government blew up the Nord Stream pipelines under the Baltic Sea last year, which would be an act of war against Russia not authorized by Congress. It’s funny how these balloons started making their way to our skies almost immediately after Seymour Hersh’s story on the Nord Stream attack broke on Substack.

All of this seems to indicate we are in serious times. But we’re not governed by serious people. Just Friday, Queen Karine announced big, groundbreaking news:

And just Monday there was this from Permanent Deep State Ringworm James Clapper…

And there was this from Pete Buttigieg, who as secretary of Transportation is the responding authority for the environmental butcher’s bill from that catastrophic train derailment in eastern Ohio…

Buttigieg made those remarks just in time for two more train derailments, one in Houston and one in South Carolina, on Monday.

We’re governed by people who suck.

We’re governed by liars who suck.

And our enemies are noticing. It isn’t good. Those balloons in and of themselves don’t matter. What matters is the perceived weakness and decline they represent.

Scott McKay
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Scott McKay is a contributing editor at The American Spectator  and publisher of the Hayride, which offers news and commentary on Louisiana and national politics, and, a national political news aggregation and opinion site. Additionally, he's the author of the new book The Revivalist Manifesto: How Patriots Can Win The Next American Era, available at He’s also a writer of fiction — check out his three Tales of Ardenia novels Animus, Perdition and Retribution at Amazon. Scott's other project is The Speakeasy, a free-speech social and news app with benefits - check it out here.
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