October 13, 2015


JOURNALISM’S DEATH RATTLE: WaPo Wastes 1000 Words Lamenting ‘Inequality’ in…Breakfast Sandwiches.

Jeff Bezos, call your office – it needs a serious intervention.


As is obvious from Hillary’s appearance on SNL followed by her Today Show infomercial, and Andrea Mitchell’s admission that she pulled punches in her interview with Hillary last month, “Surprise, surprise … NBC [is] in the tank for Hillary,” as Mark Levin tweeted last week. Similarly, ABC has long been the House of Stephanopoulos and his in-kind contributions to the Clinton slush fund. And the nepotism between CBS’s news department and the Obama administration run deep. Why would any of those networks want to run coverage of Sanders discussing how badly Obama has run the economy into the ground over the last six years and make the coronation of the president’s successor that much more difficult?

WHEN SCHOOL SHOOTERS ARE SEEN AS MERELY EXHIBITING “identification with the school-shooting tradition.”

Time for a new edition of The Copycat Effect.

WELL, THIS IS THE 21st CENTURY, YOU KNOW: ‘It’s a Miracle’: Toddler’s Head Reattached After Internal Decapitation, i.e. neck broken, in a high-speed auto crash.

DEM FIGHT NIGHT—DOWN GOES HILLARY! “Throughout her electoral history, Clinton has been a competent debater. Never great; never terrible. Which is to say, that I’d be surprised if she has a dominating debate; but it’s certainly within the realm of the possible. But it’s been eight years since she’s been on the debate stage. And she’s never face a challenge that looks like this one…The former FLOTUS/Senator/Sec. State (FloSenSec? FloSenStat? They both sound like nasal sprays) isn’t really debating anyone on the stage with her. Her job is shadowboxing Joe Biden and shoring up her image with party elites. So does she engage with Sanders directly? Stay above the fray? She has an awful lot to lose by getting into a tug-of-war with the darling of the progressive base.”

WAPO’S DAVID IGNATIUS: OBAMA’S WEIRD ‘I TOLD YOU SO’ ABOUT HIS OWN FAILED SYRIA POLICY: On today’s Morning Joe [Ignatius] called the president’s reaction “weird,” adding “he spoke almost like a man vindicated when a policy of his own administration had collapsed in failure. And he was, he took the line almost of, see, I told you so.”

Of course — successes are entirely the result of Mr. Obama’s singular brilliance. Mistakes illustrate the historic failure and systemic overreach of America itself.

LIFE IN THE 21ST CENTURY: Meet the College Student Who Started a ‘Restaurant’ in His Dorm Room.


That’s right, parents of America: nothing says “heroic role model for your daughter” like an over-rated, oversharing untalented television hack with a penchant for describing humiliating sexual experiences in great detail, lobbing unfounded accusations of rape against real people, and potentially engaging in unlawful sexual contact with a minor child. Perhaps you can even train your Kindergartener to say ridiculous things like, “I think I’m the voice of my generation,” “I blame Republicans for my lack of self-esteem,” and “Planned Parenthood killed at least a third of my classmates.” For added effect, she could tear off all of her clothes and run around naked eating cake.

She probably does that anyway, since it’s acceptable behavior for a toddler.

Just as a reminder, Dunham’s show Girls is produced by and airs on HBO, a subsidiary network of Time-Warner-CNN, the corporation that’s serving as the stenographers for tonight’s Democrat debate.

THE ECONOMIC FANTASIES OF ROBERT REICH: At the Hoover Institute, Richard Epstein writes:

There is a large point that comes out of Reich’s social agenda. Notwithstanding his long service in government, he seems to have no understanding of the enormous slip that takes place between an ambitious program for social reform and its successful implementation. I have spent most of my academic life in the weeds, looking at the specific operations of government action as it applies to pharmaceuticals, to the environment, to housing, to securities, to education, to employment, banking, insurance, and other social institutions.

In all of these areas, I have come to the conclusion that the modern progressive state has wrought untold damage for two very simple reasons. First, it has no sense as to when government should intervene and when it should stay its hand. The regulation of competitive labor markets is almost always a loser, and the ever-heavy hand of government in this area does much to explain the decline in working class incomes.

Second, the government has no sense of which means work and which do not. If the risk is monopoly, control it with an antitrust law that is limited to monopoly. But don’t wreck competitive industries, and by all means don’t use government power to prop up monopolies, as in labor markets.

But Reich is blind to all this. There is not a single proposal for deregulation in his disjointed book. Unfortunately Saving Capitalism won’t help the many as it promises to. If its policies are implemented, it will wreak economic and social mayhem on everyone.

The keyword there is “monopoly.” Or perhaps “Monopoly,” as Reich imagines himself surrounded by various iterations of Rich Uncle Pennybags, the monocled fat cat in striped pants, top hat and spats on the board game’s boxtop, as Jonathan Rauch wrote in his devastating 1997 Slate article titled “Robert Reich, Quote Doctor.”

Continue reading ‘THE ECONOMIC FANTASIES OF ROBERT REICH: At the Hoover Institute, Richard Epstein writes:
There is a…’ »

“TOTAL AMATEUR HOUR” HILLARY LEFT HER SERVERS WIDE OPEN TO HACKERS: The Smartest Woman in the World (TM), a continuing series.

Related: News you can use, especially if you’re Hillary Clinton: Your Wireless Router Isn’t as Secure as You Think.


“I have been pretty vocal about calling out for more debate debates. I have been calling for more debates to give the American people more opportunity to hear from these presidential candidates, to listen to what they have got to say, to hold them accountable for their views and their positions,” Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) told CNN last night. “Because that differentiated from the decision that the chairwoman made from the DNC, I was told that I was no longer welcome to come to the debate.”

“Debbie’s chief had called mine and basically spoke about an interview that I had had talking about the need and the call that the American people are having for more debates, for democracy, for increasing the engagement that we need in our society as we look to see who will lead our country into the future.”

Gabbard said “the prevailing message of that was because I continued to call for more debates, that I should not go to the debate there in Las Vegas.”

“…The issue here is not about me saying boo-hoo, I’m going to miss the party. The issue here is one of democracy, of freedom of speech and defending that which so many have sacrificed and given their lives for.”

Now who’s being naïve, Tulsi?

All Americans have to learn this the hard way, but wait until the light bulb* goes on, and Gabbard pieces together that the modern Democrat Party is rather opposed to the notions of “democracy, of freedom of speech and defending that which so many have sacrificed and given their lives for” — and has been for quite some time.

* Yeah, they’re opposed to those, as well.

REPORT: While Serving, Clinton’s State Dept. Staffer Paid $500K By NYU To Get Abu Dhabi Campus Built: “Remember, the problem isn’t what’s illegal — it’s what’s legal. Otherwise, it wouldn’t be a racket.”

QUESTION ASKED AND ANSWERED: Why is CNN’s Anderson Cooper promising to protect Dems during debate?

CNN’s Anderson Cooper will moderate the first Democratic presidential debate this week, and unlike the previous Republican debate hosted by CNN, Cooper said he won’t be encouraging confrontations between the candidates.

“I’m always uncomfortable with that notion of setting people up in order to kind of promote some sort of a face off,” Cooper said Sunday on CNN’s “Reliable Sources.” “Look, these are all serious people*. This is a serious debate. They want to talk about the issues and I want to give them an opportunity to do that.”

Forgetting the notion that Hillary and Bernie et al are “serious people,” (and by inference, Cooper’s shot at the GOP POTUS candidates), but of course he wants to protect his fellow Democrats:

CNN host Anderson Cooper, who is set to moderate tonight’s Democratic debate, was listed as a “notable past member” the Clinton Global Initiative’s website along with a number of other big name journalists:

The list includes: CNN’s Anderson Cooper and Christiane Amanpour, Fox’s Greta Van Susteren, NBC’s Matt Lauer and Tom Brokaw, New York Times‘s Thomas Friedman and Nicholas Kristof, Fox Business Network’s Maria Bartiromo, Yahoo’s Katie Couric, The Economist‘s Matthew Bishop, and Financial Times‘ Lionel Barber.

The Clinton Foundation later told Mediaite that none of these journalists were asked to pay the $20,000 membership fee required of  members. However, it’s safe to say that access to big name journalists was a key selling point for paying Clinton Global Initiative members. In a nutshell, Anderson Cooper helped Hillary Clinton raise money, and now he’s presented as an impartial moderator for tonight’s debate.

H.L. Mencken once said that “It is the prime function of a really first-rate newspaper to serve as a sort of permanent opposition in politics.” But then, nobody would confuse either man for the other. Or CNN as being a first-rate source of news.

* Alas, Cooper does his best to dissuade viewers of the notion that he qualifies to be called that himself.


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Baltimore City Police arrested an aide to Rep. Sander M. Levin, D-Mich., at around 2:30 a.m. on Oct. 8 for criminal domestic violence charges.

Tim Foster, a native of Henderson, Ky., brutally beat his male lover with a small black and red shovel, according to a police report obtained by CQ Roll Call, leaving the victim hospitalized with abrasions and bruises on his upper back, neck and torso.

The dispute started around 12:30 a.m. inside a Northwest Baltimore home, when Foster, 32, got into a verbal argument with the 39-year-old black male identified as his boyfriend.

Foster put his boyfriend in a choke hold and stated, “I want to kill you. Die dirty faggy,” the man later told police. Foster released him, then allegedly grabbed a stainless kitchen knife. As the boyfriend fled toward the stairs, Foster chased him and warned, “When you reach the fifth step, I am going to stab you.”

Foster lunged at his boyfriend with the knife. But Foster’s wife “got in the way” and the knife then fell to the floor, the report states.

The boyfriend told police he attempted to escape the property, but was again assaulted by Foster.

But somehow this sort of thing only reflects on a party when it’s done by Republicans.

THE FUTURE: More Life, Less Death. Let’s hope.

YOU’RE WELCOME?: “The Mullahs Say Thanks.”  The Wall Street Journal editorial board opines today on the diplomatic and political fallout (pun intended) from the Iran nuclear deal:

President Obama and his foreign-policy admirers—a dwindling lot—hoped that the nuclear deal would make Iran more open to cooperation in the Middle East and with the U.S. Mark this down as another case in which the world is disappointing the American President.

Iran’s judiciary on Monday announced thatJason Rezaian, the Washington Post’s Tehran correspondent, has been convicted. He was on trial for “espionage.” . . .

The timing of the conviction won’t escape students of history. Friday was the 444th day of his captivity. That was the number of days U.S. diplomats in Iran spent as hostages following the 1979 Islamic Revolution. Mr. Rezaian’s conviction three days later is the mullah equivalent of mailing a dead fish to an adversary. . . .

On Sunday the regime tested a new long-range, guided ballistic missile code-named Emad (“Pillar”) in violation of the nuclear deal. United Nations Security Council Resolution 2231—which passed shortly after the agreement to harmonize its provisions with international law—prohibits Iran from conducting ballistic-missile work for eight years.

But the mullahs are nothing if not impatient, and the Islamic Republic has already made clear that it doesn’t intend to abide by the provisions of Resolution 2231 it dislikes. Testifying before the Senate over the summer, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry repeatedly vowed to sanction Iran if it cheated on missiles. Well, here’s an early test case, Mr. Secretary.

The more likely outcome is that the Obama Administration will find a way to explain that the missile test doesn’t violate the nuclear accord that Mr. Obama considers a crowning achievement. . . .

But hey, Iran violating a nuclear deal by immediately testing ballistic missiles shouldn’t worry anyone. Nothing to see here.

TO BOLDLY GO WHERE FOX BUTTERFIELD HAS GONE BEFORE: The Economist asks, “America’s crime rate declined for years, while prison admissions continued to climb. Why?”

It’s a question as old as time. Or at least the New York Times.


FEEL THE BERN: WHY NO PROGRESSIVE INQUISITORS AT THE DEMOCRATIC DEBATE?I would pay good money to have a moderator up on that stage tonight who would consider it his or her sworn duty to make all the candidates applaud the Occupy movement as modern-day Founding Fathers, call for the confiscation of privately-held guns, explain that abortion should be legal until you can see the baby’s eyes, and whatnot.”

In other words, given CNN’s role as Democratic operatives with bylines and lavalier mics, to ask the question is to answer it.

THE STUPID PARTY DOESN’T EARN ITS NICKNAME FOR NOTHING: Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA) Calls Himself and Left-Leaning Republicans the ‘Governing Wing’ — And that’s exactly why he shouldn’t govern anything.

Read the whole thing.

A NEW TEENAGE PROBLEM: Compulsive Texting.

“OUTSIDER” GOP CANDIDATES BEATING CLINTON HANDILY: The latest Fox News poll, released today, shows that the three “outsider” GOP presidential candidates–Trump, Fiorina and Carson–would all beat Hillary Clinton if the election were held today.  Carson is +11; Trump is +5; and Fiorina is +3.  Jeb! is +4 as well.

These numbers suggest Clinton’s campaign is in serious trouble, but also suggest–contrary to earlier reports–that the raw, politically incorrect positions espoused by outsiders like Trump, Fiorina and Carson could garner enough votes to beat Clinton in the general election.

If Biden enters the race, however, the same poll indicates he would enjoy an early lead over each of these GOP candidates, at least for a little while.

FIREARMS HISTORY: The Dyer Multi-Caliber Rifle: The Gun That Could Fire Anything.

IN THE MAIL: from Elana Beth Schwab, Joseph’s Dream.

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TAXPROF ROUNDUP: The IRS Scandal, Day 887.

FUNDAMENTALLY TRANSFORMED: Army Sec: American Women Could Be Required to Register for Draft if Combat Jobs Integrated.

FRONTIERS OF FABULISM: Robert Redford’s Dan Rather Film So Bad That CBS Is Ripping It.

NOBEL PEACE PRIZE UPDATE: Central Asian Officials Say They’re Worried About Taliban’s Spread.

Despite failing to take Kunduz last week, the Taliban is advancing across Afghanistan, seemingly undeterred by U.S.-trained forces. Although a Russian return to Afghanistan seems unlikely, Central Asian officials have been making statements that could eventually justify Kremlin involvement. The Financial Times reports on the words of Kyrgyzstan’s prime minister, who claims his country is fortifying its borders, and Tajikistan’s president, who reportedly has expressed concerns to Putin about the skirmishes along his country’s borders. Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan are part of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, the members of which Moscow promises to protect. Russia could use that relationship to justify attacks against the Taliban.
Nor are these the only officials mentioned in the story: Afghanistan’s vice-president Abdul Rashid Dostum went to Russia and Grozny, “where he met Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov. Mr Kadyrov wrote on his Instagram account that Kabul needed help from Russia — ‘as in Syria’ — to prevent Isis establishing a foothold…”

Just about the last thing the White House needs is Putin sending fighter jets to Afghanistan. Of course, Russia would have a tough time affording another war effort and, for all we know, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan are simply complaining about the Taliban as part of a Moscow-coordinated effort to make NATO look bad.

Defense Secretary Ashton Carter says NATO is considering adjusting its Afghanistan withdrawal timeline, but the White House has not announced new plans. Ultimately, whether the Taliban truly threatens other countries or not, President Obama’s failure to stabilize Afghanistan gives a nice boost to the America-as-diminished-world-power narrative.

It’s almost like Obama doesn’t mind that.

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BUT SHE WON’T, BECAUSE LIES AND FALSE CHARGES OF RACISM ARE BASICALLY HER ENTIRE PORTFOLIO: Susan Rice Should Apologize to Netanyahu for Charges of Racism: Accusations that Bibi-Obama rift is fueled by racism are outrageous and must be denounced.

THEY NEED TO OVERCOME THEIR PREJUDICED STEREOTYPES AND EMBRACE DIVERSITY: Many Professors Anxious About Legally Armed Students in Their Classrooms. I’m sure that many professors in the past were uncomfortable about having women, or blacks, or openly gay students in their classrooms, too. But happily, progress marches on and people’s visceral fears and dislikes weren’t allowed to rule.

TEACH WOMEN NOT TO RAPE! (CONT’D): Volunteer Rialto choir teacher held in sex crimes case. “Veronica Lopez, 44, a Rialto resident, was booked Saturday into the West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga on felony charges of annoying or molesting a child under 18, oral copulation with a minor and possession of child pornography.”

PETRAEUS AND O’HANLON ARE SETTING THE BAR PRETTY HIGH, BASED ON RECENT HISTORY: Acting like adults, focusing on economic growth should be at the top of the policy agenda for U.S. leaders.

HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE, LEGAL EDUCATION EDITION: UC-Berkeley’s ‘Critical Mass’ Policy Results In Racial Divisions At Law School. “Diversity” programs always create racial divisions. And that’s not a bug, but a feature, since it gives diversity officers more things to do.


Last month, Cory Jones, a top editor at Playboy, went to see its founder Hugh Hefner at the Playboy Mansion.

In a wood-paneled dining room, with Picasso and de Kooning prints on the walls, Mr. Jones nervously presented a radical suggestion: the magazine, a leader of the revolution that helped take sex in America from furtive to ubiquitous, should stop publishing images of naked women.

Mr. Hefner, now 89, but still listed as editor in chief, agreed. As part of a redesign that will be unveiled next March, the print edition of Playboy will still feature women in provocative poses. But they will no longer be fully nude.

Its executives admit that Playboy has been overtaken by the changes it pioneered. “That battle has been fought and won,” said Scott Flanders, the company’s chief executive. “You’re now one click away from every sex act imaginable for free. And so it’s just passé at this juncture.”

For a generation of American men, reading Playboy was a cultural rite, an illicit thrill consumed by flashlight. Now every teenage boy has an Internet-connected phone instead. Pornographic magazines, even those as storied as Playboy, have lost their shock value, their commercial value and their cultural relevance.

Perhaps the goal here is to temporarily remove nudity from Playboy to then allow the magazine to send out a press release in another year or two saying they’re back to (pardon the pun) goose sales. But if porno mags in general have indeed lost their shock value, I wonder what comes next in the ongoing Weimar-ification of American culture?

Related: “When Penthouse was in its heyday, few would have guessed that it would be outlived by, of all things, Mad magazine. Yet while Guccione’s dynasty is now an Ozymandian rubble of tits and ass, Alfred E. Neuman can still be seen leering out from magazine racks around the nation, a kind of silent rebuke to all the supposedly smart sophisticates he’s seen come and go.”

CULTURE OF CORRUPTION: Ex-head of Chicago Public Schools expected to plead guilty. “The former head of Chicago Public Schools is expected to plead guilty in what prosecutors say was a scheme to steer more than $23 million in no-bid contracts to education firms for $2.3 million in bribes and kickbacks.”

ASHE SCHOW: 4 questions men should ask when searching for a college.

In recent years, as academics have taken a back seat to social justice, the most pressing questions facing college students have to do less with whether a degree will get you a job, and more to do with whether your feelings will be properly validated.

Enter White House Adviser Valerie Jarrett, who has a bylined article up at Yahoo! Parenting listing questions women should ask when searching for a college to attend. She repeats early on in the article the myth that 1 in 5 women are sexually assaulted while in college (she, of course, doesn’t point out that it’s a myth), and offers advice to parents of daughters searching for colleges to attend.

Jarrett offers four questions: What sexual assault prevention programs does the college have? What are the Title IX coordinator’s responsibilities? How easy is the reporting process for sexual assualt accusers? And what support services are available to those accusers? These are all fine questions for a cautious student who has been bombarded with media reports claiming that there’s a “crisis” of sexual assault on college campuses.

But I’m proposing my own short list for men who are preparing to attend college. This would go well with my warning to college men that the universities don’t care about them once they’re accused of sexual assault. There are many more questions that could and should be asked, but I’m limiting my list to four to pair with Jarrett’s.

They’re good questions.


Wow, great arguments, guys. You sure showed that pediatric neurosurgeon what was what. On one hand, Carson–a world-renowned pediatric surgeon–made a completely uncontroversial remark about the nature of the Nazi gun control regime: its entire purpose was to make it easier for Nazis to kill Jews. On the other hand, you used the F-word repeatedly. I don’t know who I can trust!

The progressive response to Carson is illustrative: deep down they know that Nazi gun confiscation during the Holocaust poses something of a problem for those who wish to institute gun confiscation regimes today. Defending forced gun confiscations in theory (“fewer guns means less violence!”) is a lot easier than defending forced gun confiscations in practice. So instead of being faced with either defending Hitler’s gun confiscation regime or acknowledging that Carson’s underlying point was correct, they chose to gaslight him.

They should not get off that easy, though. If they’re going to attack Carson for accurately describing the intent behind Nazi disarmament of Jews, then they need to answer a few questions about that disarmament regime. Question one: was Hitler wrong to disarm the Jews? Why or what not? (Or if you’re a Godwin’s law adherent: was the South wrong to forcibly disarm blacks?) And question two, should they deign to answer the first one: why did Hitler disarm the Jews?

Related: Carson’s Response to PC Outrage Is Smarter than Trump’s:

Carson’s response to the howls of the PC left is the right one: We’ll call it “apathetic conviction.” He’s not outraged by the outrage; he simply doesn’t care. The outrage bores him. And no response is better calculated to rob critics of their power than boredom. You’re offended by my comments? I’m trending on Twitter? Wake me when the shame-storm is over, and then let’s debate my arguments on their substance.

A response that just drives the leftwing outrage mobs and their spokesmen in the MSM all the more crazy in the process, particularly when compared to the soft-spoken Carson.

NOBEL PEACE PRIZE UPDATE: Hope fades on Obama’s vow to bring troops home before presidency ends. But he brought enough home, fast enough, that we lost the war and destabilized a region. So we’ve got that going for us, anyway. This is what happens when you wage war half-assed, by committee, and on the cheap.

AND YET, HE’S OLD: Jerry Brown: Suicide good, extending life not.

Governor Jerry Brown has vetoed “Right to Try” legislation passed by large bipartisan majorities of both houses of the California legislature. In my recent Washington Examiner column on “Right to Try,” I noted that 24 states have adopted such measures, championed by the Goldwater Institute, which would allow terminal patients access to medicines certified as safe but not approved for use by the Food and Drug Administration. Brown justified his veto on the grounds that the FDA already has a compassionate use policy that allows some patients some access to these drugs. But as the Goldwater Institute points out, that process is incredibly cumbersome and only a small percentage of those in need are able to jump through all its hoops.

Less than a week before Brown signed a bill legalizing assisted suicide, on the grounds that it would help patients avoid suffering. But now he has vetoed right to try, which would help terminal patients avoid suffering and extend their lives. He will need all of his Jesuit training, and more, to reconcile those two decisions.

He won’t even try.

BUT NOT AN INTERNATIONAL SOCIALIST. MORE LIKE A NATIONAL KIND OF ONE. Sanders: I’m no capitalist, I’m a Democratic Socialist!

ROLL CALL: Next Speaker Unlikely to Continue Long String of Leadership Insiders.

There may be plenty of good reasons why Republicans are now seeking a “fresh face” as House speaker. But picking from outside the existing chain of command could also create some big challenges.

It also would be highly unusual. Only once in the last century has someone been chosen to preside over the House without ever occupying a lower rung in the leadership. The past 16 speakers, in other words, have won with serious insider credentials — even when political common sense has pointed to the selection of a certified outsider.

It’s very possible that precedent will be skirted this fall. Most of the members now in the roiling mix for speaker have made their reputations as policy experts, ideological warriors or marketing experts for the GOP — but have never been called on to practice those talents using the special tool kit of political power, staff resources and outside influence that comes along with a seat at the top table.

Sounds terrible.

NEWS YOU CAN USE: Good to know! Birther jokes are totally cool when @TheDemocrats make them.

Hopefully now the same Democrats making Canadian jokes about Ted Cruz will lighten up around those people who’ve long been pointing out that Obama is a closeted Keynesian.

MINNESOTA DENTIST WON’T GET CHARGED FOR CECIL THE LION HUNT: “Golly — you mean the lynch mob was wrong? Go figure. Palmer, an experienced hunter, had his papers in order all along.”

CULTURE OF CORRUPTION: Top Clinton aide worked on Abu Dhabi project while at State.

Hilary Clinton’s former chief of staff spent some of her time at the State Department working part time to build a campus for New York University (NYU) in Abu Dhabi.

Cheryl Mills disclosed the details of the special arrangement — which are likely to raise additional questions about top government officials who split their time between official and private work — in an interview with The Washington Post published on Monday.

Mills worked “very hard” to stick to State Department rules preventing conflict of interest, she said in the interview.

“I try to understand the rules and follow them. And I try to make sure that I’m disclosing my obligations,” Mills said. “I don’t know if I’m ever perfect. But I was obviously trying very hard to make sure I was following those rules and guidelines.”

Mills served as Clinton’s chief of staff during the Democratic presidential candidate’s time as secretary of State.

There is no try. There is only do, or not do.

WHY MEN FIGHT: ’16 West Point Cadets Will Wear Class Rings Containing WTC Steel.


  • Ideological diversity in science fiction and fantasy was a given in the seventies. We are hopelessly homogenistic in comparison to them.

  • The program of political correctness of the past several decades has made even writers like Ray Bradbury and C. L. Moore all but unreadable to an entire generation. The conditioning is so strong, some people have almost physical reactions to the older stories now. — Read the whole thing.

WAIT, REALLY WHAT: Who Stands in the Way of a Feminist Utopia? Women. Oh, you mean that (Marxist) Utopia?  Yep.  Guilty as charged.  You may thank me later.

OR MAYBE CANINES ARE LESS SCARY: How to Weaponize your Cat to Hack Neighbours’ Wi-Fi Passwords

CHECKING CANINE PRIVILEGE:How New York favors dogs over cats.

SO THAT’S WHY THEY SEE IT EVERYWHERE: The Unbearable Racism of Social Justice Warrior Jerks.

WAIT, WHAT: City thinks your kid needs a ‘recess coach’ to play nice.

IN A DESPERATE BID FOR RELEVANCE: NYCC 2015: Paul Krugman and Brad DeLong Ponder the ‘Star Trek’ Economy.


THE KABUKI THEATER OF THE INDOCTRINATED: Why Do Texas Students Plan To Carry Sex Toys To Protest Against New Campus Carry Law?

NAH, HE’S JUST FIDDLING: Obama Has Given Up.

WHAT DO YOU CALL 500 DEAD UNION BRANCHES AT THE BOTTOM OF AN ABYSS: Major threat to public-sector union membership.

DOOMED TO REPEAT IT: When pensions implode: Silicon Valley’s lesson for New York.

DEATH WISH: Jerry Brown Vetoes Right to Try and Live Bill.  Never any interest in “try and live,” never any rationing on assisted suicide.  So, pro death?

October 12, 2015

SPEAKING TRUTH TO POWER, OR SOMETHING: Trump: Merkel ‘Insane’, Predicts German Riots, Says Migrants Look Like Prime Time Soldiers.

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OBAMA DOESN’T SEEM HUMILIATED. HE SEEMS FINE WITH IT. Russia and Iran running neck-and-neck in Obama-humiliating sweepstakes.

HMM: Study finds that hidden infections may be real reason why people fall.

Around 2.5 million people aged 65 and older are treated in the ER for falls each year, but researchers who took part in a Massachusetts General Hospital study warn not to automatically assume that “older” means they took a tumble because they’re feeble, clumsy, or suffering from poor eyesight or dementia.

Instead, per the Telegraph, there may be a more surprising cause, scientists announced at the Infectious Diseases Society of America’s annual meeting: an infection. Urinary tract, bloodstream, and respiratory infections are the most common culprits when infections are involved—all of which can often lead to dizziness, low blood pressure, and other symptoms that may precipitate a fall, a press release notes.

The release adds that while it’s currently unclear how many falls are actually caused by infection—estimates based on previous research range from 20 to 45 percent —researchers wanted to find out what kinds of infections afflicted those who had fallen because of them.

How the study was conducted, per Forbes: Reviewing the hospital’s medical records from 2000 to 2014, researchers whittled its group of subjects down to 161 patients who had suffered a fall and been determined to have a coexisting systemic infection (CDI).

Of the 161, 44 percent had a UTI, almost 40 percent had a bloodstream infection, and 23 percent had a respiratory infection, the release notes; meanwhile, almost 6 percent had a heart valve infection.

What made the results of the study somewhat surprising: A majority of the subjects (56 percent) had few or no common symptoms of an infection, leading to 41 percent of them being misdiagnosed initially.


BECAUSE LEAVING YOU ALONE OFFERS INSUFFICIENT OPPORTUNITIES FOR GRAFT: Points And Figures: Why Can’t They Just Leave Us Alone? “We had Obamacare, now we have ObamaSave. It’s the proposed rules on retirement courtesy of President Obama. When you roll over a 401(k) to an IRA, you will have to be advised by someone acting in your best interest. Do you know who acts the best in your best interest? You. This is pure stupidity and just layers on another cost.”

HOMING IN ON THE SOURCE OF RUNNER’S HIGH. I’ve never experienced it, though I have started running again in a very mild way. I’m running a mile a couple of times a week, just for a change. Rippetoe is right that heavy lifting keeps you in good enough cardio shape that you can run a mile without getting winded. On the other hand — and this is one reason why I’m doing it — my form is terrible. I feel like a lumbering moose. I expect that will improve with practice.

AT AMAZON, Trick-or-Treat with Your Furry Friend.

UPLOAD YOUR MIND: Will You Ever Be Able to Upload Your Brain? Interesting piece, but it appears to embody Clarke’s First Law: “When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is possible, he is almost certainly right. When he states that something is impossible, he is very probably wrong.”

AND WITH THAT, BERNIE LOSES THE REASON CROWD: All y’all understand that Bernie Sanders is not enamored of the marijuana, yes?

But Maureen Dowd may be having strange new respect, though.

A MODEST PROPOSAL FROM SCOTT OTT: SNL Just Made the Best Argument for Why We Need This One Gun Law.


Thousands of conservatives and even some moderates have complained during my more than three-year term that The Post is too liberal; many have stopped subscribing, including more than 900 in the past four weeks.

It pains me to see lost subscribers and revenue, especially when newspapers are shrinking. Conservative complaints can be wrong: The mainstream media were not to blame for John McCain’s loss; Barack Obama’s more effective campaign and the financial crisis were.

But some of the conservatives’ complaints about a liberal tilt are valid. Journalism naturally draws liberals; we like to change the world. I’ll bet that most Post journalists voted for Obama. I did. There are centrists at The Post as well. But the conservatives I know here feel so outnumbered that they don’t even want to be quoted by name in a memo.

—The late Deborah Howell, the Washington Post’s then-ombudswoman, admitting on Sunday, November 16, 2008 just how badly her paper was in the tank to elect Mr. Obama.

Flash-forward to today: “Washington Post Reporter ‘Convicted’ of Espionage By Our Best Pals in Iran.”

—Headline, Ace of Spades today.

As Betsy Newmark adds, “This is what happens when a presidential administration doesn’t prioritize the lives of American citizens. With all that negotiating for a year with Iran, we couldn’t have made his release a condition of talking? Nope, because Obama wouldn’t let anything stand in the way of his dream of a deal.” And in their hatred of President Bush, the media were not prepared to properly vet Mr. Obama in 2008. As even CNN admitted by the end of November 2008, Americans “are putting a lot of faith in a man they barely know.”

The eight year experiment with the Obama administration will be a cautionary tale on multiple levels concerning America’s socialist elite and their palace guard stenographers. It will be debated for many years to come — no matter how badly the president and his acolytes leave America — and increasingly the Middle East — “fundamentally transformed.”

FUNDAMENTALLY TRANSFORMED: America’s Fading Footprint in the Middle East. “From shepherding Israel toward peace with its Arab neighbors to rolling back Iraq’s 1990 invasion of Kuwait and halting the contagion of Iran’s Islamic Revolution, the U.S. has long been at the core of the Middle East’s security system. Its military might secured critical trade routes and the bulk of the world’s oil supply. Today, the void created by U.S. withdrawal is being filled by the very powers that American policy has long sought to contain.” Well, you know, now Obama has more flexibility.

WELL, OKAY, BUT I ALREADY HAVE A SHOTGUN: British Companies Build Jamming System To Take Down Drones.


All of which raises a simple question: What is the New York Times doing promoting the film and Rather’s and Mapes’s discredited accounts? While Rathergate lacks the historical importance of Walter Duranty’s journalistic wrongdoing as the Times’s Moscow bureau chief in the 1930s, it nonetheless should serve as an uncomfortable reminder of that shameful episode. As the Times’s man in Moscow, Duranty covered up Stalin’s terror famine in the Ukraine. Reflecting in the first volume of his autobiography on his experience working for the Manchester Guardian alongside Duranty in Moscow, Malcolm Muggeridge wrote: “If the New York Times went on all those years giving great prominence to Duranty’s messages, building him and them up when they were so evidently nonsensically untrue . . . this was not, we may be sure, because the Times was deceived. Rather it wanted to be so deceived, and Duranty provided the requisite deception material.” History repeats itself; in its own way, the Times’s celebration of Truth represents a closing of this particular circle.

Read the whole thing.

Related: Michael Graham interviews Harry MacDougald, the Atlanta lawyer who’s initial questioning of the validity of the Killian documents exposed the flawed CBS report about George W. Bush’s National Guard Service.


Shot: A report in the New York Post claims that Hillary Clinton could have “a serious meltdown,” as the emotional pressure of a failing campaign is causing her to have “childlike tantrums” that “leave staffers in tears.”

—Rick Moran at the PJ Tatler, yesterday.

Chaser: Hillary Clinton: “I’m Really Not Even a Human Being.”

Vanity Fair, today.

Suddenly all of those “Reboot Hillary Clinton” headlines over the past couple of years take on an entirely new perspective…

Related: David Axelrod on Hillary’s robotic nature: “She has to be very careful about not looking like she is not reading from a script…So I just think the biggest thing they have to do is filter everything they do through that authenticity lens. Because if she comes off as inauthentic, it’s going to just compound what seems to be the core problem facing her right now.”

That she’s having great difficulties passing the Turing Test?

Update: “Technically, it was still part of Spain.”


NEWS YOU CAN USE: How to Talk to Your Kids (and Yourself) about Christopher Columbus.

Related: “Columbus Day is the perfect gift for media: a whole day of outrage takes/countertakes that can be scheduled in advance on a holiday weekend.”

PRETTY SURE I DON’T: You Need to Build a Fire Pit out of an Old Tire.

ANCHOR DADDIES?: Why so many of Europe’s middle eastern migrants are men.

Many of the men I interviewed traveling solo told me they had left their families behind and intended to reunite with them once they’d been accepted by a safe European country.

This helps to clarify why so many of Europe’s newcomers are young men. Of 102,753 registered arrivals through Italy and Greece, the International Organization of Migration found that 68,085 were men, with only 13,888 women and 20,780 children. . . .

“They tell us, ‘We do this dangerous trip on our own, we get asylum, and there is a law in the European Union that the family can come,’” says Christof Zellenberg, the chairman of the Europa Institute, who has been heavily involved in volunteer efforts in Vienna. You see few newcomers over 50, he adds, because “this is a grueling trip, and you need to be young and strong.” . . .

But a future influx of families could another problem, as Zellenberg notes. Europe is already struggling to deal with the financial burden caused by today’s newcomers, who are pouring across European borders at levels not seen since World War II. If the majority of these men plan to bring families later, the current numbers are totally off. Multiply it by four or more, he says.

These anchor daddies will strain Europe’s resources and could fundamentally transform its culture.


Maybe Putin will save Assad, maybe he won’t. But people and governments in the Middle East will long remember that Obama’s definition of leadership meant abandoning our allies in Baghdad, showing the back of his hand to our friends in Jerusalem, cozying up to the liars and killers in Tehran, waging an effete air campaign against ISIS, and dithering while Syria descended into an almost unimaginable humanitarian crisis.

In the broader region, Obama’s leadership left Libya in ruins and wide open to ISIS penetration, alienated Egypt, decreased our leverage in Pakistan, and accomplished almost nothing in Afghanistan except to turn it into a safe haven for pederasts.

Obama’s disastrous failure to lead in the Middle East has helped to flood Europe with refugees and potential terrorists, encouraging the rise of Putin-like far-right parties throughout NATO and the EU. Meanwhile, Moscow appears set to flagrantly violate Obama’s New START agreement, building up its arsenal of deployed nuclear warheads above the impending caps. Our own arsenal continues to shrink, already well under the 2018 limits.

However, the president does see an opportunity coming soon to turn all this around, telling Kroft that “my definition of leadership would be leading on climate change, an international accord that potentially we’ll get in Paris.”

Obama fiddled with the thermostat while the world burned.

Read the whole thing.

AT ALBION’S SEEDLINGS: Columbus, the Exit, and the Forge of Modernity.

A TALE OF TWO DEAD WHITE MALES. Woodrow Wilson vs. John C. Calhoun. “Unlike the Yale petition, the Princeton campaign against Wilson has gained little traction and has received no national media attention. Why? The answer surely has something to do with the fact that Wilson, the founder of the modern Democratic Party, is a progressive icon, while Calhoun is reviled as a proto-conservative.”

THE PERENNIAL QUESTION: “She said, ‘If he’s a drug dealer, why don’t I have better shoes?’”

TO BE FAIR, WHY WOULD ANYONE WANT TO DO THAT? If we don’t get Joe Biden, there won’t be one candidate who’s running on Barack Obama’s record.

JOE PAPPALARDO: Confessions of a Private Space Rocket Engineer. “It’s a hell of a time to be working as a young space engineer in the United States. Back in the day—and by that we mean less than 10 years ago—engineers had no options but to work inside massive aerospace firms, toiling away on small minutiae of aerospace projects that may never make it past the drawing board. And for most of their careers, they’d remain far away from any hardware that actually flew. But these days there are options—private space companies working on a plethora of spacecraft and launch vehicles.”

OUCH: O’Malley gets 4 percent support from home state.

HILLARY CLINTON, CALL YOUR OFFICE: A New Way to Fight Aging in the Brain.

DAVE KOPEL: Unarmed Jews defeat mass murder: Revolts at the extermination camps. “Sometimes the only way to stop mass killers is to fight. That was the strategy attempted by the Jewish prisoners on October 14, 1943, at the Sobibor extermination camp in Poland.”

I’m also reminded of the surprisingly-good miniseries Uprising, based on the Warsaw Ghetto Revolt. Here’s a review that Kopel and I wrote back when it came out. And here are some related thoughts of mine from a while back.

THESE TIMES CALL FOR A REALLY STUPID, FUTILE GESTURE. And he’s just the guy who can do it. “Today I went to my local police station and asked for them to take my guns and have them destroyed. . . . Last week, I sat in a hotel room and watched the President talk about the latest mass shooting and how they had become routine and the concern that nothing would change. I started to shrug it off and pretend in my mind that there was nothing I could do. But the idea that gun culture doesn’t bear some responsibility for these killings didn’t make sense to me. I didn’t want to be a part of gun culture anymore.”

Honestly, I’m happy to see anyone so susceptible to demagoguery disarmed.

MY USA TODAY COLUMN: Why the Democratic Party is squelching Larry Lessig’s message.