August 31, 2015

A POST ABOUT ELIZABETH WARREN, but not about politics.

IT’S ALL ABOUT CONTROL: The Latest Frontier In Total Regulation? Exercise. “If you think about this for a moment, it appears that the regulators have their eye on CrossFit, just as they want to strangle Uber.”

THIS WILL CAUSE SOME HEADS TO EXPLODE: Gluten-free GM wheat can help celiac patients.

AT AMAZON, most wished-for items in Movies & TV.

Plus, Beautiful Things For Men, updated daily.

AN EARTH-SHATTERING KABOOM: Blast Seen in Chemical Industry Zone in Shandong, Daily Reports.

FEDERAL RESERVE INCOMPETENCE: The Sleeper Campaign Issue of 2016?

Since the Great Recession ended in 2009, the recovery has been slow and painful. Wages have been so stagnant that the average American family earns $1,000 a year less in income than it did in 2008. That’s why some two-thirds of people believe that their children won’t be better off than they were — a reversal of the American Dream. A growing number of people believe the Federal Reserve has hurt rather than helped the recovery. It has pursued zero-interest-rate policies that have perversely made it impossible for many businesses to get credit to expand. The Fed and other central banks have injected trillions of dollars into the global economy; according to the New York Sun, the result is that “the world is now afflicted by a public-sector debt bubble that could rupture in any of a number of countries.” The Fed’s blatant attempt to prop up asset prices has fueled inequality. The Fed’s low-interest-rate policies have “exacerbated the wealth gap between the poor and the rich, because the rich have assets,” former NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg recently said. “And that is what is being hiked here because of low interest rates, whether they own stocks or whatever the case may be.”


Jeff Bell, a former adviser to Ronald Reagan and now the director of policy at the American Principles Project, told the conference he was excited by a new poll his group commissioned from pollster McLaughlin and Associates. It asked 1,000 likely voters whether they supported a gold standard, while recognizing that many people would be unfamiliar with the concept. But a surprising 39 percent agreed that the country would be better off with one, with only 15 percent disagreeing. The remaining 46 percent did not know. Surprisingly, support for a fixed monetary rule crossed demographic divides. While 45 percent of Republicans backed gold, so too did 37 percent of Democrats. A surprising 39 percent of African Americans favored a gold standard, the same number as the general population. Hispanics, at 45 percent, and Asians, at 61 percent, were significantly more in favor of the concept. By age, 38 percent of those younger than 30 wanted a gold standard, while only 34 percent of those over 65 agreed.

That is surprising. At least, I’m surprised.

WHEN “FIND” MEANS, BASICALLY, “SWAM RIGHT INTO IT:” Researchers find sunken military vessel missing for decades.


AT AMAZON, save up to 25% on Select Dyson Machines.

Plus, deals in Luxury Hair Care.

MISSING FROM THIS STORY IS ANY FOCUS ON THE FACT THAT THE KILLER WAS HIMSELF A NEWSMAN: Virginia TV Shooting Leaves News Crews Rattled. But it’s true that changes in technology — and budget cuts — make situational awareness tough. Used to be you’d have at least 3 people on a shoot. Now you’ve got the on air talent — who has to look at the camera — and maybe a cameraman — who has to look through the camera — and no producer or production assistant or anyone who can keep an eye on surroundings.

AT 20, SHE’S TOO YOUNG TO HAVE VOTED FOR OBAMA: Woman Who Can’t Spell “Whore” Allegedly Keyed Her “Wore” Friend’s Car.


According to The New York Post, Williams took nearly everything as a racial insult. Trevor Fair, a cameraman at WDBJ, said Parker would say, “The reporter’s out in the field,” and Williams would respond, “What are you saying, cotton fields? That’s racist.” When a manager brought in watermelon for employees, Williams reportedly said, “You’re doing that because of me… You guys are calling me out because I’m black.” He even accused 7-Eleven of racism for selling watermelon-flavored Slurpees.

Bryce Williams may have been mentally ill. But he was the ultimate product of the left’s microaggression society, seeking offense everywhere and then lashing out at others based on a perceived sense of victimization. Some victimization is objectively true, but that doesn’t mean that all claims of victimization are. The notion that subjective self-assessment of victimization should take precedence over objective fact is deeply dangerous.

Jim Geraghty dubbed Flanagan a “Grievance Collector:”

There are disturbing ramifications if media discussions are indeed driving us to become a more grievance-minded society. Willard Gaylin, one of the world’s preeminent psychology professors, writes about the dangers of “grievance collecting” in his book Hatred: The Psychological Descent into Violence:

Grievance collecting is a step on the journey to a full-blown paranoid psychosis. A grievance collector will move from the passive assumption of deprivation and low expectancy common to most paranoid personalities to a more aggressive mode. He will not endure passively his deprived state; he will occupy himself with accumulating evidence of his misfortunes and locating the sources. Grievance collectors are distrustful and provocative, convinced that they are always taken advantage of and given less than their fair share. . . .

Underlying this philosophy is an undeviating comparative and competitive view of life. Everything is part of a zero-sum game. Deprivation can be felt in another person’s abundance of good fortune.

At the heart of the grievance collector’s worldview is that he is not responsible for the condition of his life; a vast conspiracy of malevolent individuals and forces is entirely at fault. There is always someone else to blame, and the Virginia shooter quickly finds ways to excuse his actions and deflect the responsibility to others.

For decades, the media has given “grievance collectors” plenty of fuel for their paranoia. In a fawning 1990 profile of Bryant Gumbel, then co-host of NBC’s Today Show, a New York Times journalist off-handedly wrote:

The writer-producer Allison Davis, who is also black, notes that Gumbel does many subtle things on the air to help change images. One example, she says: “Bryant Gumbel does not say ‘Black Monday’ when talking about the stock market. He’s constantly qualifying and looking at stories where the issue of race may or may not be germane.”

And every November, like clockwork, someone in the media sees racism in the phrase “Black Friday.” In 2012, the words “golf” and “Chicago” were deemed racist by a division of NBC.

In 2011, Democrats in the media instantaneously seized on Sarah Palin’s clip art as a cause for the shooting in Tucson. When it was obvious that the shooter never saw Palin’s clip art or its concurrent use by Democrats (it’s the nature of elections that everyone is being “targeted” for defeat by someone) this was followed by lots of trolling leftist articles demanding a new civility from politicians and the media on both sides of the aisle.

Naturally, nothing changed; don’t look for the media to stop providing rhetorical ammo to grievance collectors anytime soon, either.

(Of course, as long as the violence is merely rhetorical, it’s fascinating to watch the grievance collectors devour each other — such as the left turning against leftist house organ Salon for describing Trinidadian-born American rap star Nicki Minaj as “savage” in a tweet.)

UPDATE: Joe Scarborough: Cable news has put lives at risk, including MSNBC, for “a few ratings points.”

ALSO, A MILITARY BUILDUP: Fear of Russia Drives High-Voltage Power Projects in the Baltics.

THERE IS AN INDIVIDUAL WHO IS RESPONSIBLE. THAT INDIVIDUAL IS KNOWN. THAT INDIVIDUAL WILL EVENTUALLY TALK. Mystery deepens into how classified emails got onto Clinton’s unclassified server. “It is hard to move classified documents into the non-classified system. You couldn’t move a document by mistake.”

GOP OUTSIDERS SURGE IN LATEST IOWA POLL: The Monmouth University poll, conducted Aug. 27-30, now has Trump and Carson tied in Iowa at 23%, with Carly Fiorina third at 10%. Jeb Bush is far behind, at 5% support (pretty horrific for someone with such broad name recognition), and his unfavorables are higher than any other candidate, at an astonishing 51%.

It’s definitely the year of the anti-establishment candidate.

READER BOOK PLUG: From Dr. Michael Kennedy, War Stories: 50 Years in Medicine.

This isn’t his first book: He’s also the author of A Brief History of Science, Disease and Medicine.

IN THE 21ST CENTURY, MANY DISEASES ARE DISGUISED AS SUCH: Orthorexia Nervosa: The ‘Disease Disguised as a Virtue.’

HEALTH: New Alternatives to Statins Add to a Quandary on Cholesterol.

IS DONALD TRUMP PAT BUCHANAN’S HEIR? That’s the question that Jim Geraghty is asking:

A pugnacious, television-savvy, anti-trade, anti-illegal-immigration candidate comes out of nowhere, attracts intense enthusiasm from an angry Republican grassroots, gets denounced by a disgusted media, and suddenly endangers the hopes of a presidential frontrunner named Bush.

That was Pat Buchanan early in the 1992 presidential election; that is Donald Trump today.

Read the whole thing.

STUDY: BLIND PEOPLE CAN BE RACIST: “Twenty-five people? This is more like a large focus group than any sort of quantitative endeavor. It makes a good headline but this is hardly scientific.”

But then, starting in 2007, anybody could be weaponized by the left and declared racist if it advanced the narrative. As we approach 2016, anybody can be weaponized and declared sexist as well.

You could be next — yes, you!

VLAD, GET OFF THOSE GIRLY-MAN WEIGHT MACHINES AND TRY READING MARK RIPPETOE INSTEAD. THEN YOU’LL LOOK LIKE A REAL MAN. Putin launches a new arms race: Action man Vlad’s latest photo stunt shows him and Russian PM Medvedev pumping iron in the gym.

Of course, when your competition looks like this, it’s easy to put on airs, so don’t get cocky, Vlad.

ALL THINGS CONSIDERED, this New Republic piece on Randy Barnett and the libertarian constitutional movement is really pretty good. But I thought this part was revealing:

Barnett believes the Constitution exists to secure inalienable property and contract rights for individuals. This may sound like a bland and inconsequential opinion, but if widely adopted by our courts and political systems it would prohibit or call into question basic governmental protections—minimum wages, food-safety regulations, child-labor laws—that most of us take for granted. For nearly a century now, a legal counterculture has insisted that the whole New Deal project was a big, unconstitutional error, and Barnett is a big part of that movement today.

If your entire program is called into question by the notion that individuals have property and contract rights, maybe the problem is with your program.

And to the extent that, as believed by many, the Supreme Court’s eventual accommodation to the New Deal was the product of duress in the form of FDR’s court-packing scheme, then isn’t that accommodation, in fact, illegitimate?

WILL THE PHRASE, TECHNICALLY, NOT A FELON, FIT ON A BUMPER STICKER? Petraeus prosecutor: Clinton has committed no crime. But I remain unconvinced. Readers may ask which characteristic of the author is more important: That she prosecuted Petraeus, or that she donated to Hillary’s campaign? At least it’s acknowledged.

DOES FREE SPEECH OFFEND YOU? This is the topic I explore in my new video for Prager University, in which I discuss the threats freedom of speech faces worldwide, including European governmental censorship, campus speech codes, as well as newer challenges posed by trigger warnings and the policing of microaggressions. I also cover these topics in more detail in my short book Freedom From Speech and “The Coddling of the American Mind,” the article I co-wrote with Jonathan Haidt for The Atlantic.

TAXPROF ROUNDUP: The IRS Scandal, Day 844.

HMM: ‘Pendulum Factor’ could land Trump in White House.

If you’re having trouble understanding the phenomenal rise of Donald Trump, buck up — you’re not alone. Even political pros are dumbfounded.

They were shocked when the reality-TV star and businessman first grabbed the lead in national GOP polls. Now they’re double shocked as he soars in primary states, grabbing a 24-point lead in New Hampshire and a 15-point lead in South Carolina.

In one survey, Trump more than doubled his favorability ratings among Republicans in a single month, from 20 percent to 52 percent. The Hill newspaper called the turnaround “political magic” and the poll’s director, Patrick Murray of Monmouth University, called it ­“astounding.”

“That defies any rule in presidential politics that I’ve ever seen,” Murray told The Hill.

Other pollsters made similar comments, but a closer look shows an explanation. I call it the Pendulum Factor.

It reflects the fact that the legacy of each president includes the political climate he leaves behind. In plain English, Barack Obama’s most ­important failures as a leader begat Donald Trump’s success.

This sounds a bit like the Insta-Daughter’s Theory Of Presidential Opposites.

THEY OUGHT TO BE FIRED: It’s back to school time, and progressive professors at Washington State University are gearing up to suppress speech they personally find “offensive,” such as saying “illegal alien,” using the terms “male” or “female,” or failing to “defer” to the “experiences of people of color”:

In his “Introduction to Multicultural Literature,” for example, professor John Streamas informs students in his syllabus that he expects white students who want “to do well in this class” to “reflect” their “grasp of history and social relations” by “deferring to the experiences of people of color.”

The taxpayer-funded critical studies professor also writes in his syllabus that Glenn Beck is a member of a group of “insensitive whites.”

Streamas, who obtained his Ph.D. at Bowling Green State University, is most notable because he told a student who supports limits on illegal immigration: “You are just a white shitbag.” . . .

A second Washington State faculty member, Selena Lester Breikss, warns students in her “Women & Popular Culture” course this semester that they risk “failure for the semester” if they use the terms “male” or “female.” . . .

“Students will come to recognize how white privilege functions in everyday social structures and institutions,” Breikss adds.

Finally, not to be outdone, Washington State American studies professor Rebecca Fowler similarly warns students that she will lower their grades if they utter the phrase “illegal alien” at any time in her “Introduction to Comparative Ethnic Studies” course.

The taxpayer-funded Fowler proclaims that she bans students from using the phrase “illegal alien” because the Associated Press stylebook “no longer sanctions the term.”

The Associated Press stylebook is purely an advisory publication for professional journalists. It has no force of law whatsoever. . . . Public university students who dare to use the phrase “illegal alien” “will suffer a deduction of one point per incident,” Fowler warns.

Apparently these sensitive little snowflake professors cannot tolerate any disagreement. For their failure to tolerate a diversity of views and engage in actual teaching (rather than proselytizing), they should be terminated for “cause.” Parents and students should avoid this university at all costs, unless/until the University’s administration takes appropriate disciplinary action to ensure that all viewpoints are welcomed, even those that are “offensive.” It’s called “free speech,” and yes, it protects offensive speech, too.

THIS WAS A DEBACLE OF THE FIRST ORDER, AND HASN’T GOTTEN THE ATTENTION IT DESERVES: China and Russia are cross-indexing hacked data to target U.S. spies, officials say.

AT AMAZON, fresh deals on bestselling products, updated every hour.

Also, coupons galore in Grocery & Gourmet Food.

Plus, Kindle Daily Deals.

And, Today’s Featured Digital Deal. The deals are brand new every day, so browse and save!

HENCE THE POPULARITY OF TRUMP AND SANDERS: Poll: Nearly three-fourths of Americans unhappy with country’s direction. How’s that hopey-changey stuff workin’ out for ya?

I’M PRETTY SURE SHE WAS ALREADY INFECTED: Christie: Clinton caught ‘disease’ of lawlessness from Obama White House.

Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.) said on Sunday that Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is careless for using a private email server at the State Department.

“No one is above the law,” Christie told host Chris Wallace on “Fox News Sunday.”

“Unfortunately with the Obama administration, there has been lawlessness in this country,” said Christie, a 2016 GOP presidential contender. “Apparently Hillary Clinton has caught this disease as well.”

Christie argued on Sunday that Clinton’s actions as secretary of State flaunted her disregard for the laws governing transparency and national security.

He added that she is now presenting a haughty attitude while defending her technology habits on the 2016 campaign trail.

Well, that’s certainly true.

IT’S ALWAYS THE FAULT OF “HOARDERS AND WRECKERS,” NEVER THE FAULT OF THE CENTRAL PLANNERS: China pins market plunge on financial journalist, airs ‘confession.’ Just in case you thought they’d become civilized or something. Nope. Still commies when push comes to shove.

MIGRANTS: EU calls emergency immigration summit.

JOHN HINDERAKER: Obama’s Stonewall Tactics: A Case Study. “The Obama administration has proved to be the least transparent in our modern history. To an unprecedented degree, the administration is staffed by scofflaws who flout their legal obligations. When confronted with requests for information, let alone actual investigations, Obama’s habitual response is to stonewall. This strategy has been remarkably successful in avoiding accountability, in part because legal processes are so slow. We have seen this pattern dozens of times. One instance, which is highlighted by a federal court order issued on Friday, illustrates how the administration has operated from the beginning of Obama’s term in office.”


Perhaps as much as any senior government official, Holder argued in support of a quota regime, which at its logical extreme guarantees that even the children of black billionaires get preferences easier than a white kid brought up in an Appalachian hovel.

Yet this is the same official who gently treated Wall Street malefactors—the very people in large part responsible for millions of foreclosures, including those that affected many blacks—to an extent that even the usually pro-Obama Rolling Stone openly wondered if he was a “Wall Street double agent.”

The Obama years—following the previous disasters left over from the Bush regime—have been largely an economic disaster for black America. Child poverty is at the highest level in 20 years, and among African Americans it stands at a disastrous 38 percent, rising even during the recovery. After decades of gradual decline, concentrated urban poverty has grown rapidly over the past decade.

Nor have African Americans benefited much from the recovery. White American unemployment is either about the same or below what it was before the recession levels, while the gap with African Americans has grown, in some states two and a half times that of the majority population. In Washington, D.C., the fundamental center of blue-state America, it’s five times as high.

Far more helpful than expanding racial quotas would have been steps to put African Americans to work, particularly teenagers, who suffer nearly 30 percent unemployment rate, twice the national average.

This is a point that Bernie Sanders has been making, actually, but the press doesn’t report what Bernie says much, just his crowd numbers, because what he says reflects badly on Obama.

VDH ON HOW ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION FINALLY TURNED OFF THE AMERICAN PUBLIC: “If there were not a Donald Trump, he would likely have had to have been invented,” Victor Davis Hanson writes:

Sometime in the last five years, the public woke up and grasped that Latino elite activists were not so much interested in illegal immigration per se, but only to the degree that the issue affected other Latinos. Were 3,000 Chinese illegally entering California per day by ship on the Northern California coast, Latino activists and politicians would probably be the first to call for enforcement of federal immigration law.

It is difficult for the National Council of La Raza to attempt to airbrush away vocabulary like “anchor baby” and “illegal immigration,” while insisting that its own nomenclature “La Raza” has nothing to do with race. The public knows that La Raza means “The Race,” and that those who founded that organization chose that racially charged noun for the precise purpose of ethnic triumphalism — in the way that every infamous 20th-century Latinate racist demagogue from Mussolini to Franco found a use for Raza/Razza, a mostly taboo term in Mediterranean Europe today. In an age when the Washington Redskins earn a presidential rebuke, it is inconceivable that the chief illegal-immigration advocate is a federally subsidized group known as the National Council of La Raza. No other organization would dare use such a term. In the public mind illegal immigration has gone from the old narrative that racists were enforcing the law to keep out mostly brown people to a new generation of racists who are trying to subvert the law to bring in mostly brown people.

Read the whole thing.


FIGHTING THE FUTURE: With the new NLRB ruling, progressives have taken up William F. Buckley’s stance—”athwart history, yelling ‘Stop!’” It won’t work.

President Obama and the progressives in his Administration believe that by fighting this trend—and the NLRB ruling is intended to do exactly that—that by forcing corporations back into the old patriarchal model of a politically-defined and regulated patron-client/employer-employee relationship, they are fighting for the economic interests of poor people and the lower middle class most directly, but also indirectly and to a lesser extent for the rights of all workers. Union activists believe the same thing, passionately and sincerely.

What they don’t see is that the genie can’t be stuffed back in the bottle. All the king’s horses and all the king’s men can’t put blue Humpty Dumpty together again. Take the fast food industry, for example, an industry that virtually every economic and social policy of the contemporary progressive movement is trying to maim. From the $15-an-hour minimum wage in the industry demanded by New York to the fight against fast food on nutritional grounds by the Broccoli Police and the Nutrition Nannies, to this new NLRB ruling mandating that the employees of franchises be considered for certain regulatory purposes employees of the parent companies, the progressive movement is trying to do to McDonalds and related companies what Bill deBlasio and the taxi lobby want to do to Uber.

industryThe net effect of these changes will be to narrow the choices of food that poor people have, to raise the price of the food they have to buy, and to accelerate the automation of the restaurant industry, further reducing the already limited number of jobs open to people with few skills. Progressives will look on the consequences of this disaster and conclude that with urban unemployment higher and the cost of living for the poor rising, we obviously need more food stamps and rent subsidies—and so we must impose heavier taxes on the companies and industries that are still profitable in order to pay for these necessary benefits.

They’re not actually stupid. They’re pursuing a policy that produces more power for progressives, regardless of its effect on their alleged clients.

YET ANOTHER REASON FOR TRUMP’S POPULARITY: “Europeans are obsessed with Donald Trump — The loud-mouthed billionaire businessman embodies what Europeans love to hate about the U.S.,” sniffs a haughty Politico-Europe author as he dives for the fainting couch:

PARIS — The media here has got a Continental strain of Trump fever.

Since the real estate mogul made a shocking surge to the top of the Republican presidential polls in the U.S., Europe has fixated on the unapologetic showman, churning out a steady stream of news coverage and commentary.

On Thursday, France’s Libération newspaper devoted its entire front page to a photo of a snarling Donald, with an inch-high headline that read: “Donald Trump — The American Nightmare.”

The Continent has its share of outrageous personalities on the political right of center: Britain’s Nigel Farage, Italy’s Silvio Berlusconi, France’s family Le Pen. But Trump fits many perceived European stereotypes of America: excess, vulgarity, ignorance, superficiality, love of wealth, to name a few.

“Trump represents the America that we love to hate,” said Marie-Cécile Naves, a sociologist and author of “Le nouveau visage des droites américaines” (“The New Face of the American Right”). “He is our negative mirror image, a man we see as brutal, who worships money and lacks culture — someone who lets us feel a bit superior about being European.”

They have learned nothing and forgotten nothing — not the least of which how swell it worked on both sides of the Atlantic when America elected a Europe-approved candidate in 2008:

Obama Berlin 2008

Spectators listen to the speech of of the U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., seen on the screen, in front of the Victory Column in Berlin, Thursday, July 24, 2008. (AP Photo/Jens Meyer)


Saturday, in Minneapolis, Reuters reported:

Several hundred protesters from the Black Lives Matter movement marched to the Minnesota State Fair on Saturday to bring attention to race issues ranging from policing to underrepresentation of minorities at one of the nation’s biggest state fairs.

The mixed-race crowd, including senior citizens and children, chanted slogans along the 1-1/2 mile route and briefly lay down on a bridge south of the fairgrounds

Minnesota media reported the number of marchers at 325.

A few hundred miles to the south, a throng of 20,000, led by Glenn Beck, marched in Birmingham, Alabama, along the same route marched by Martin Luther King. They were there to declare that “All Lives Matter.”

Guess which march received national media attention and which one didn’t.

Because controlling the narrative is what the DNC-MSM is all about.

ANOTHER PLACE WHERE THE MEDIA AND THE POLITICIANS FAILED: Mike Grunwald On The Army Corps Of Engineers And Katrina. “When Katrina hit, the Army Corps originally claimed it had overtopped and overwhelmed its levees. That’s why FEMA became the villain. But my engineer pals in New Orleans showed me the Corps was lying. You could see the debris line on the levees! 1800 people died because the Corps flood protection failed. They were victims of bad engineering & bad priorities.”

JOEL KOTKIN: Economic Progress is More Effective Than Protests: Ta-Nehisi Coates and the new wave of black nationalists are selling a line that is inimical to real racial progress in America.

The election of Barack Obama promised to inaugurate the dawn of a post-racial America. Instead we seem to be stepping ever deeper into a racial quagmire. The past two month saw the violent commemoration of the Ferguson protests, “the celebration” of the 50th anniversary of the Watts riots, new police shootings in places as distant as Cincinnati and Fort Worth, and renewed disorder, tied to a police-related shooting, in St. Louis last week.

When President Obama was elected, two-thirds of Americans thought race relations were good. Now six in ten think they are bad, according to a New York Times poll, including some 68 percent of African Americans.

This extreme alienation creates a rich soil for resurgence of a cramped form of black nationalism, as revealed in such widely read books as Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Between the World and Me. Coates, like the black nationalists of the ’60s, is fawned over by today’s progressive gentry. New York Times film critic A.O. Scott gushed that Coates’s writing is “essential, like water or air.” Yet the new nationalists do not, like many previous iterations, look to Africa for salvation, and as a potential place of re-settlement. Instead they may look to Africa for inspiration, but seem content to stew in the American racial cauldron, always apart but also here.

Yet to this reader, it’s hard to regard Coates’s book as anything more than a narrow selfie that holds little hope for any future racial progress.

Demagogues gonna demagogue. They gain wealth and power from division. If most people suffer, that’s immaterial.


Screen Shot 2015-04-25 at 9.59.38 PM

Worst president ever.


WE BUILD: In this case I’d like to build some following for James Young whose book, Acts of War, I enjoyed immensely.

IT’S LIKE TIGER BEAT FOR MASS MURDERERS: The Corner The one and only. Lovable Rogues All.  I feel like saying “Wow, now I’m glad teh Grauniad has maligned me and my friends, seeing whom they praise!”

THE LABEL DOESN’T MATCH THE CONTENTS: The ‘lone wolf’ theory is a myth.

AND HOW WOULD WE BE ABLE TO TELL THE DIFFERENCE: A rejection of the nuclear deal could lead to radicalism in Iran.

August 30, 2015

OBAMACARE III: This Time It’s Personal.

CATHY YOUNG: Mutiny At The Hugo Awards.

Is this, as the Puppies’ detractors suggest, all about straight white males trying to protect their turf from interlopers like the women who snagged nearly two-thirds of the Hugo nominations for fiction in 2012? The Puppies’ fiction picks were indisputably male-dominated, with only three female authors out of 17; yet some of the group’s most dedicated members are women such as writers Sarah Hoyt, Amanda Green, and Cedar Sanderson. (The latter two were Puppy nominees for Best Fan Writer, which recognizes sci-fi related nonfiction work for nonpaying or low-paying magazines or websites.) And Hoyt told me in our email interview last spring that her personal worst example of the Hugos’ political corruption was a 2013 win for a white male: the Best Novel award to “Redshirts” by John Scalzi, a satirical riff on “Star Trek.” Hoyt, who dismisses the novel as “bad fanfic,” thought the award was blatant cronyism on behalf of Scalzi, a recent president of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America and one of the fandom’s high priests of “social justice” ideology.

Then there are the politicized “message” stories. Thus, last year’s Best Novel Hugo went to “Ancillary Justice” by Ann Leckie, whose protagonist belongs to a futuristic human civilization with no concept of gender distinctions and with “she” as the universal pronoun. The Best Story winner, “The Water That Falls on You from Nowhere” by John Chu, dealt with a Chinese-American man’s struggles with coming out as gay. (The “fantasy” part was a clunky plot device: a mysterious phenomenon that causes anyone telling a lie to be instantly doused in water.) Also high on the gripe list is last year’s nomination for “If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love” by Rachel Swirsky, a short story that even some of its fans concede is not really science fiction or fantasy. It is the internal monologue of a woman who daydreams about her comatose fiancé—the victim of a hate crime by men who apparently thought he was gay or transgendered—becoming a human-sized dinosaur.

Read the whole thing.

VENEZUELA IN THE MIDWEST: Illinois Can’t Pay Lottery Winners.

THE COURAGE TO LEAD: Democrats end summer meeting with no resolution to support Obama’s Iran deal. “Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the committee chairwoman, prevented the resolution from being considered at the group’s summer meeting this weekend in Minneapolis, sources told The Washington Post, which first reported the story. Obama and his White House team have worked diligently to get enough Capitol Hill votes for the resolution to pass, amid strong opposition from the Republican-controlled House and Senate.”

SARAH HOYT: What I’ve Learned From Dealing With SF SJW Types. “I was horrified and disgusted by their actions, but not in the least surprised.”

FIRST GLENN BECK’S HISTORIC MARCH IN BIRMINGHAM, NOW THIS: Nearly a thousand locals create memorial for deputy shot and killed at gas station.

Many people gathered together at a memorial Saturday evening to remember Harris County Sheriff’s deputy Darren Goforth.

The memorial was made up of flowers, balloons, posters and candles among other items.

All of the items were all placed at the same gas pump where the deputy was shot and killed Friday night. The deputy was pumping gas when he was shot in the back multiple times, according to the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.

Hundreds of people were showed up Saturday evening to grieve and pray together for the family and friends of the officer.

One of those in attendance was Houston Police Officer Roland Delasantos. He said he had known Deputy Goforth since the two of them were in the fourth grade. “We really need a lot of healing, rather than anger. We need the community to understand, most of us are out here, are here to help, we are really here to do good…”

Andre Renolds, a friend of Goforth’s was also at the vigil. “It’s the uniform, it’s people out there spreading hate about police officers when these police officers are out there trying to protest and serve us…” he said.

Those gathered lit candles and gave hugs, hoping to turn the murder from hate to healing.

Hmm. Judging by the photos, the crowd was a lot more diverse than a Bernie Sanders rally. . . .

I PREFER ONSITE CONSTRUCTION BY NANOBOTS, OR AT LEAST 3D PRINTING, BUT THIS IS A HIGH-TECH EMERGENCY SHELTER. “The pods are 10 feet tall and 8.5 feet wide. They come configured with a double bed, a double bunk, or an office and can sleep as many as four people. The shape evolved from McDaniel’s teepee inspiration as he began pondering how to transport them most efficiently. The shells were designed to nestle nine deep on an 18-wheeler. ‘Essentially you’re moving 36 people per truck,’ he says. Contrast that with shelters fashioned from shipping containers, each of which requires one truck to move and houses six people. The Exo shelters fit together like stacked coffee cups and are relatively easily pulled from a truck and carried by integrated handles. The exterior shell weighs 375 pounds, the floorboard 350. McDaniel claims it takes two minutes to erect an Exo.”

AMERICA’S TROLL IN CHIEF ARBITRARILY RENAMES TALLEST MOUNTAIN IN NORTH AMERICA: Mount McKinley, 20,237-feet tall, “was officially renamed by Congress in 1917 in honor of President William McKinley, stirring criticism of the U.S. Board of Geographic Names among native Alaskans,” the Washington Examiner reports, adding that “Ahead of his 3-day swing through Alaska, President Obama announced Sunday that Mount McKinley will return to its native Alaskan name, Denali — meaning ‘the great one.’”

Well, Jackie Gleason always deserved that sort of honor. Not to mention the giant SUV produced by Government Motors.

Update: “Compromise: Instead of calling it ‘Denali’ we call it ‘Canyonero.’” Heh.™


CHARLES BARKLEY: Voting For Democrats Hasn’t Helped Blacks. True.

AT AMAZON: Men’s Best Fall Jeans and what to wear with them.

ROGER SIMON: Who Shot The Sheriff?

Shannon Miles (a black man) is a crazy guy, just as Dylann Roof (the white man from the Charlston church shootings) is a crazy guy and Vester Lee Flanagan (the black man who killed his white co-workers at a Virginia TV station the other day) was a crazy guy. The latter two claimed they wanted to start a race war. No word yet on Miles, but if we believe in what our grandmother’s told us – that actions speak louder than words – he’s already more than half way there.

(You will note that I am not using the neologism African-American, which I think is part of the problem, not part of the solution.)

Also obvious, Barack Obama and Eric Holder (and now Loretta Lynch) are to blame for encouraging an atmosphere of racial divisiveness and, yes, hatred in our society. Anyone honest can see – and the polls have reported – a serious increase in racial tension and violence (Baltimore, Ferguson, etc.) since the beginning of the Obama administration. The racist-to-the-core “Black Lives Matter” movement is quite simply their evil spawn.

But those are the easy targets. We have to go back further to determine “Who Shot the Sheriff?” … way back to the dear old 1960s when the civil rights movement stood at a fork in the road. I was there at the time and, sadly, perhaps meekly, I took the wrong fork.

Read the whole thing.

THIS WILL WIN FRIENDS, OR AT LEAST INFLUENCE PEOPLE: Black Lives Matter Comes to the State Fair. “The main entrance to the fair on Snelling Avenue was closed down, which must have been a terrible inconvenience to fairgoers. . . . There was no violence, but a number of passers-by stopped to argue with the demonstrators. In each case, as reported by the Minneapolis Star Tribune, those who argued with the marchers said that all lives matter.”

Despite the best efforts of politicians, the media, and the educational establishment, the spirit of equality remains strong among Americans. But as I’ve noted before, Black Lives Matter is best understood as shock troops for an intra-Democratic Party power struggle, not as a movement that’s trying for mainstream acceptance.

TRUMP’S SECRET: Rasmussen: Nearly 3 in 4 Americans Think Political Correctness Is a Problem. “Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump during the first pre-primary debate reiterated a point he’s made throughout his campaign that ‘the big problem this country has is being politically correct.’ Most Americans strongly agree with that sentiment. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 71% of American Adults think political correctness is a problem in America today, while only 18% disagree. Ten percent (10%) are undecided.” Almost a 4-1 margin. That’s pretty huge.

AT AMAZON: Designer Sunglasses for Men.

LEGAL ACADEMIA’S DIVERSITY PROBLEM: Lawyers By Practice Area; Law Professors Are The Most Liberal Among 61 Groups.

THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU DON’T PLAY THE ‘GENDER-NEUTRAL’ GAME ON A COLLEGE CAMPUS: “The truth is, liberals are name calling goons posing as intellectuals. Even if the school doesn’t mandate the policy, liberal students will do all they can to bully anyone who refuses to play along.”

But they’re not liberals in any sense of the word — and never were — so why call them that?

RELATED: “Here ze comes.”

KATRINA FLASHBACK: When Kathleen Blanco Froze.

KATRINA FLASHBACK: The Key to Disaster Survival? Friends and Neighbors.

BUSINESS OPPORTUNITY: “Where’s the website that connects educated women to less-educated but desirable single men?” You could call it

EUROPE’S BORDER CRISIS: Hundreds of thousands of “refugees” from the Middle East and Africa are crossing the Mediterranean, seeking a better life in Europe. 

They have to satisfy the authorities that they are fleeing persecution and would face harm or even death if sent back to their country of origin.

Under EU rules, an asylum seeker has the right to food, first aid and shelter in a reception centre. They should get an individual assessment of their needs. They may be granted asylum by the authorities at “first instance”. If unsuccessful they can appeal against the decision in court, and may win.

Asylum seekers are supposed to be granted the right to work within nine months of arrival.

Basically, this is the same experience of the United States, with mass, virtually unchecked migration across the southern border from individuals–including large numbers of unaccompanied minors–fleeing horrific political and economic conditions in Central and South America. The scale of such migration taxes the resources of the host country (schools; government benefits; jobs) and increases risks to national security. Indeed, such problems are now causing Europe to re-think its open borders policy:

“We face a diffuse terrorist threat trying to attack our values,” French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve told an emergency meeting of foreign ministers from France, Germany, Spain, Italy and other European nations, who met in Paris to deal with terrorism and improve security in the wake of the attack by gunman Ayoub El-Khazzani on the Amsterdam-Paris Thalys train last week.

At the heart of the discussion was whether or not the European Union border policy of free travel, known as “Schengen,” can survive the waves of growing attacks against civilians in Europe.

The “perfect storm,” as a European diplomat called it, has hit Europe: terrorism, a migration crisis, and crime. Although they are not directly connected, the perception among many seasoned Europe observers is that the free movement of people across borders is making it easier for waves of people who intend to commit acts of violence to prey on victims – and to escape prosecution.

Yep. Any country (or federation of countries, as with the EU) that wishes to protect its sovereignty and citizens (which is the very purpose of government) must control its borders. It’s really that simple. While one cannot help but have empathy for those individuals fleeing economically or politically volatile countries, the solution is to help stabilize those countries, not tolerate ongoing massive, disruptive shifts in population, which only leads to destabilization of stable democracies (republics), which in turn, holds the potential to destabilize the world.

HERE’S LOU DOLINAR ON The media’s criminally bad reporting on Katrina. And here’s more from Prof. W. Joseph Campbell.

PROBABLY THE BIGGEST MARCH THERE SINCE THE CIVIL RIGHTS ERA: ‘All Lives Matter’ march draws more than 20,000 to Birmingham. “Actor Chuck Norris, a conservative activist known for his martial arts, action movies and TV show ‘Walker, Texas Ranger,’ marched about two rows behind Beck. Alveda King, a niece of civil rights activist the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., marched in the front row. Bishop Jim Lowe, pastor of the predominantly black Guiding Light Church in Birmingham, co-organized the march with Beck and marched with him at the front. As a child, Lowe attended Sixteenth Street Baptist Church, where the march started, a headquarters church for the civil rights movement in Birmingham. Lowe and his sisters were in the church when a KKK bomb blew up the church and killed four little girls on Sept. 15, 1963.”


Notice the URL.  Uncle Andy’s Jerky dot com.  Or is it?

A child looking at the magazine with me noticed it was actually Unclean D-Y-S Jerky.  That’s right, unclean jerky.

Holy bad website startup choices Batman, especially for a product like dried meat.  We couldn’t stop laughing.

Fortunately, as Christian writes, “So if you’re looking for some craft jerky, be assured, Uncle And’s is clean.  They’ve added a dash of dashes.”

Well, that’s a relief.

IN THE MAIL: From David Weber, The Sword of the South.

Plus, today only at Amazon, 55% Off this Rowenta Pro Precision Steam Station.

And, also today only: 60% Off Original Penguin Men’s Clothing & More.

Plus: Save Up to 35% on Select Graco Car Seats.

TAXPROF ROUNDUP: The IRS Scandal, Day 843.

CYBERWAR: America Becomes The Perfect Target.

There is an increasingly loud (and public) debate within the U.S. government about how to respond to Cyber War. The U.S. has lost hundreds of billions of dollars’ worth of technology to China. While much of this stuff is covered by patents, details that must accompany the patent application do not contain all you need to replicate the patent illegally. China has been going after these unpublished trade secrets and other essential items not made public but essential to make stolen technology work. This involves a lot of trade secrets considered too valuable (to illegal duplication) to even patent. China has stolen a lot of stuff and that includes purely military secrets like wartime plans and procedures.

The Department of Defense has lots of useful ideas about how to retaliate but lawyers and American war planners have so far blocked these plans. Some of the retaliation plans involve dismantling China’s internal Internet spying and censoring system as well as making Chinese Internet based information and control systems unusable. Some government lawyers consider many of these operations illegal, or at least unclear in the legality department. Some American war planners caution that it is best to not reveal just how much damage we can do because that gives the Chinese an opportunity to adjust their defenses. A growing number of Department of Defense officials believe the Chinese are already on the offensive in the Cyber War department and the U.S. is not helping itself by waiting for the lawyers and paranoid planners to be placated before actually doing something to discourage the Chinese and other nations waging Cyber War against the United States.

You know, I’m beginning to think that our military is on the verge of being overlawyered.

MOLLY BALL: Joe Biden And the Democratic Vacuum. Vacuum? What vacuum? They’ve got septuagenarians coming out of their ears!

AT AMAZON, fresh deals on bestselling products, updated every hour.

Also, coupons galore in Grocery & Gourmet Food.

Plus, Kindle Daily Deals.

And, Today’s Featured Digital Deal. The deals are brand new every day, so browse and save!

K-12 IMPLOSION UPDATE: Teacher keeps $90K job after being late 111 times. “I have a bad habit of eating breakfast in the morning, and I lost track of time.”


The decision is one of dozens issued this year by arbitrators under the state’s Teacher Effectiveness and Accountability for the Children of New Jersey, or TeachNJ.

The tenure reform law, signed by Gov. Chris Christie in 2012, is supposed to make it easier to remove bad educators from the classrooms, although most of the arbitration decisions this year have returned teachers to their jobs, favoring job suspensions rather than terminations.

In Anderson’s case, the arbitrator said the district failed to provide the teacher with due process by providing him with a formal notice of inefficiency or by giving him 90 days to correct his failings.

While Anderson was unable to “plausibly” explain his lateness and — in the arbitrator’s words — relied on “micro-quibbles of a few unpersuasive explanations” while arguing “even when he is late he nevertheless delivers a superb educational experience to his grateful students,” the arbitrator felt that “progressive discipline” was fairer than termination.

It’s like the teacher’s unions don’t really care about the kids’ welfare at all.


A technician “erroneously” deleted information from a July inspection report about a serious track defect that caused a train to derail Aug. 6, Metro said in an investigation report released to the public on Friday. . . .

Defective rail fasteners were the root cause of the track problem known as wide gauge that caused the derailment, Metro found. The agency, formally known as the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, said the rails weren’t properly held in place, spread too far apart, and caused a wheel axle to lose its grip and derail outside Smithsonian station.

The wide gauge problem fell into a category that requires immediate attention because “the track is at risk of failure if operations continue.”

Ya think?

THE HILL: Enraging industry, labor board asserts its power under Obama.

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has become a lightning rod for controversy under President Obama, with its aggressive actions fueling sustained warfare between business and labor.

From the labor board’s bitter fight with Boeing, to the creation of new union election rules, the NLRB has repeatedly moved to the forefront of political debate, drawing in Congress, the White House and even the Supreme Court.

The NLRB’s latest bombshell was dropped on Thursday, when the board determined the waste management agency Browning-Ferris should be considered a “joint employer” of temporary workers.

The decision expands the definition of what it means to be an employer in the United States, and could put companies on the hook for labor violations committed by business partners and contractors.

Business groups condemned the decision, portraying it as the latest example of the NLRB blatantly favoring unions during Obama’s tenure.

You know, if you folks had backed Romney this wouldn’t be happening.

GO TO BED: A nap a day could save your life, research suggests.

INSOMNIA THEATRE (PSYCHOLOGY EDITION): LUKIANOFF AND HAIDT ON ‘THE CODDLING OF THE AMERICAN MIND’ – As some of you might have seen, best-selling author and social psychologist Jonathan Haidt and I co-wrote the cover story of the September issue of The Atlantic. The article, “The Coddling of the American Mind,” examines the latest manifestation of PC culture on college campuses and how it may be harming students’ mental health. The Atlantic has received a lot of reader feedback on the piece and is sharing some of its favorite reader comments (next week they will posting our responses to some of the criticisms). You can check out some of the highlights from those comments here. And, if you haven’t seen it already, here is a video of Haidt and me discussing the article as well as some personal reflections on what led us to write the piece.

LOVING YOUR ENEMIES: is one thing.  Paying their legal bills is another.

DON’T CRY FOR ME GREAT BRITAIN: Jeremy Corbyn’s Falklands plan tantamount to surrender to Argentina, warns wounded veteran Simon Weston.

YEAH, THAT WILL SOLVE THE PROBLEM: Citigroup braces for world recession, calls for Corbynomics QE in China.

August 29, 2015

I BLAME THE PRUDES WHO RUN HOLLYWOOD: Why Are Sex Scenes For The Over-60s So Taboo?

IS IT TIME TO BRING BACK THE BATTLESHIP? “For decades, naval architects have concentrated on building ships that, by the standards of the World Wars, are remarkably brittle. These ships can deal punishment at much greater ranges than their early 20th century counterparts, but they can’t take a hit. Is it time to reconsider this strategy, and once again build protected ships?”

HOW MANY MORE WILL DIE BECAUSE OF OBAMA’S RACIALLY CHARGED RHETORIC? Suspect arrested, charged in ambush killing of Texas county sheriff’s deputy.

Hickman said the motive for the killing had not been determined but investigators would look at whether Miles, who is black, was motivated by anger over recent killings elsewhere of black men by police that have spawned the “Black Lives Matter” protest movement. Goforth was white.

“I think that’s something that we have to keep an eye on,” Hickman said. “The general climate of that kind of rhetoric can be influential on people to do things like this. We’re still searching to find out if that’s actually a motive.” . . .

In an earlier news conference on Saturday, Hickman and District Attorney Devon Anderson both had strong words for what they said was an unprovoked attack targeting law enforcement, while touching on the recent climate of tension between civilians and law enforcement.

“We’ve heard black lives matter, all lives matter. Well, cops’ lives matter, too,” Hickman said.

Anderson said that there are bad individuals in every field, but that “there should not be open warfare on law enforcement officers.”

Goforth, 47, was near a gas pump when the gunman approached him from behind and opened fire, Harris County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Ryan Sullivan told The Associated Press.

I remember when Sarah Palin was called an accomplice to murder over clip art.

HISTORY: Discovery of ancient cave paintings in Petra stuns art scholars. “Spectacular 2,000-year-old Hellenistic-style wall paintings have been revealed at the world heritage site of Petra through the expertise of British conservation specialists. The paintings, in a cave complex, had been obscured by centuries of black soot, smoke and greasy substances, as well as graffiti. Experts from the Courtauld Institute in London have now removed the black grime, uncovering paintings whose “exceptional” artistic quality and sheer beauty are said to be superior even to some of the better Roman paintings at Herculaneum that were inspired by Hellenistic art.”

AT AMAZON, Back To School Deals Galore!

Plus, save 10% on Bushnell Rubicon products.

WELL, TO BE FAIR, THEY’RE READING JOSEPH NOCERA. IN THE NEW YORK TIMES. TigerHawk: Joseph Nocera thinks his readers are idiots.

Amazon is up 10 times since Blodget made the call that Nocera ridicules, or 988% vs. around 200% for the Nasdaq and the Dow, notwithstanding the popping of the Internet bubble in early 2000. I know this in part because I shorted Amazon in 1998 for basically the same reasons that Nocera attacks Tesla now. It was a very useful learning experience for me.

The point, of course, is not to vindicate Henry Blodget or rescue Adam Jones, who is more than capable of defending himself. Indeed, Nocera seems to have justified Jones better than Jones ever could. The next Amazon, you say? Bring. It. On.

But how do you write that column, and how does your editor publish that column, without a whisper of a hint of an acknowledgement that, well, people who acted on their belief in Blodget in 1998 (and had the discipline to maintain their conviction for a few years) are far happier today — or at least wealthier — than people who believed Nocera? We don’t even get a single “to be sure”?

You need to read the NYT so you know what is going on inside the lefty echo chamber, but it is very hard to believe anything on its editorial pages at face value. Otherwise, for example, you would think that Joe Nocera can distinguish a good securities analyst from a bad one.

Well, none of their columnists can tell a good presidential candidate from a bad one, so. . . .

THIS IS COOL: Is ‘Pastor Paul’ The World’s First ‘American Nollywood’ Film?