December 15, 2014

IF YOU OPPOSE NUCLEAR ENERGY, YOU DON’T REALLY CARE ABOUT THE ENVIRONMENT: An Open Letter To Environmentalists On Nuclear Energy.

SAVING LIVES ON THE BATTLEFIELD, with injectable hydrogel.

WHY THE NHL lost control of its Mumps outbreak. You really don’t want mumps as an adult male.

CAVE FIND SUGGESTS when humans figured out fire.

12 DAYS OF DEALS: Christmas Deals in Home Goods.

Also, $25 off the Kindle Fire HD7.

THE CULT OF BULLETPROOF COFFEE. Well, it’s better for you in the morning than a bagel, because it’s low carb.

THE MPAA REALLY IS AN AWFUL ORGANIZATION: Leaked Emails Reveal MPAA Plans To Pay Elected Officials To Attack Google.

WHAT IT’S LIKE TO DRIVE the 1980s’ greatest supercars.

KEVIN WILLIAMSON: Elizabeth Warren, corporate-welfare queen.

JOURNALISM: Of Course: NY Magazine Story of 17-Year-Old Market Whiz Debunked.

THOU SHALT NOT CONTRADICT THE NARRATIVE, ESPECIALLY WITH ICKY PATRIARCHAL FACTS: Angry protesters denounce George Will at MSU; called ‘rape denier,’ backs turned. Hey, they’ve been turning their backs on the truth for a long time. But the biggest joke: signs stating “rape is not a pawn to be politicized.” Uh huh.

Even more delicious: “At Michigan State’s ‘alternative ceremony,’ one speaker was professor Ruben Parra-Cardona, associate director of MSU’s Research Consortium on Gender-Based Violence. Ruben, in a speech, criticized Will for seeing sexual violence ideologically. The scholar also checked his own privilege.”

Related: Charles C.W. Cooke: Does Truth Matter to the Feminist Left? The reactions to the unraveling of the Rolling Stone story suggest not. “Where most readers accepted with alacrity the possibility that Sabrina Erdely could have got it wrong, the tireless archaeologists of our supposedly ubiquitous ‘rape culture’ took to remolding their position every six-and-a-half minutes and to carrying on in public like a bunch of frothy peanut-gallery-voyeurs at a backwoods 17th-century witch trial. Just a few short weeks ago, when Rolling Stone’s story was almost universally believed to be true, we were urged to read each and every sordid detail of the case so that we might better acquaint ourselves with the broader problems that are presented by ‘rape culture.’ Today, as the story continues to collapse, the opposite view is regnant, and the very same people who pointed excitedly to Erdely’s work now contend that we should not be focusing on an individual case such as this in the first place.”

THE NEW CRITERION ON DOUBLE STANDARDS: “Why is it acceptable for celebrities or other certified feminist icons to prance around in pornographic splendor when men are expected to behave with Mrs. Grundyesque rectitude?” Because feminism, as practiced, is all about expanding women’s options and diminishing women’s responsibilities, while doing the opposite to men. Because equality!

SO IT SEEMS THAT THE MAIN FUNCTION OF THESE “HANDS UP DON’T SHOOT” PROTESTS is to bankrupt blue-state police departments. Now even Deval Patrick is complaining.

“KNOWN WOLF” SYNDROME: Sydney Hostage-Taker Is Yet Another Case. “Monis came to Australia in 1996 from Iran and his immigration status was that of political refugee. He has since had other well-known run-ins with law enforcement. In 2009, he sent a series of hate messages, which he deemed as ‘flowers of advice,’ to the families of Australian military members who had been killed in action. He likened their deaths to the deaths of Hitler’s soldiers, as well as to families of Australian victims of international terrorism attacks. He was given 300 hours of community service. In another case, Monis was charged with 50 counts of sexual assault, where it was claimed that he lured victims in and assaulted them claiming it was a ‘spiritual healing technique.’”

MY USA TODAY COLUMN IS UP: The great campus rape hoax: The truth – that rape on campus is becoming less common – doesn’t fit the left’s narrative.

IN THE MAIL: Edited by Tom Kratman and Vox Day, Riding the Red Horse.

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TAXPROF ROUNDUP: The IRS Scandal, Day 585.

BLOWBACK: ‘Fire University of Virginia president Teresa Sullivan’ put to petition.

STEPHEN L. CARTER: Why The CIA “Torture Report” Is Like the Rolling Stone Rape Debacle.

By not talking to relevant CIA personnel, the staff weakened what was in most other respects a thorough and troubling examination of poorly conceived and poorly run program. But one needn’t be a supporter of the enhanced interrogations — I’m certainly not — to find unpersuasive the proffered explanation that CIA officials could not talk to the committee while a criminal investigation was pending. The investigation closed in 2012. Had the committee wanted to interview CIA officers closely involved in the program, there was plenty of time to do so, even if it meant postponing the date for finalizing the report. If, on the other hand, there are pending criminal matters to which the public isn’t privy, then releasing the report with all the accompanying hoopla is sure to poison the jury pool.

Why, then, didn’t the staff members speak to ranking intelligence officials, either in the CIA or elsewhere in the executive branch? Perhaps we see at work a malady that has become all too common: a reluctance to disturb the narrative.

Nowadays, narratives are all the rage, and inconvenient facts and testimony are generally left out of the story. This is exactly what got Rolling Stone magazine in trouble. Even back when I was a college journalist, we never ran a controversial story without seeking a response from the other side. But Rolling Stone, in its vivid account of a rape alleged to have occurred at a fraternity house on the University of Virginia campus, did exactly that. No comments from the accused; no comments from the fraternity; no comments from the accuser’s own friends. The accuser supposedly placed these limits as a condition of writing the story. Why on earth did the magazine go along?

Surely the same explanation applies. To do otherwise would have disturbed the narrative. Sexual assault is said to be rampant on campus, and Rolling Stone had a powerful story to tell. Adding even routine denials, to say nothing of the sort of widely varying accounts that a serious investigation would surely have unearthed, would have reduced the power of the tale.

It’s hard to believe that the magazine would have stumbled into the same thicket of unprofessional journalism had it been reporting on, say, a source’s allegations that the Internal Revenue Service had targeted conservative organizations. Possibly the story wouldn’t have run at all; certainly it would not have run without a serious effort at verification.

Journalistic standards, like Congressional ones, are amazingly flexible depending on who is being targeted.

ROGER SIMON: Did Edward Snowden Hack Sony Pictures? “Many of us who have spent even part of our lives working in the film industry, particularly those who have committed the unpardonable sin of not adhering religiously to the orthodox liberal line, cannot but grin at the release of the hacked emails from the bosses of Sony Pictures. We were right all along about these self-described liberals and progressives and now we have proof — they are pond scum. They are about as liberal and progressive as Attila — not that those words mean anything anyway. They’re also racist, but forget about that. It’s hardly surprising. What is surprising is that they are clueless. They don’t know what the average ten-year-old nerd knows.”

HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE, LEGAL EDUCATION EDITION: Four Charts That Explain Why America Has Too Many Law Schools.

HOW’S THAT HOPEY-CHANGEY STUFF WORKIN’ OUT FOR YA? (CONT’D): Average American’s Wealth Down 40% Since 2007, Inequality Has Widened Across Racial Lines.

WHAT’S SAD IS THAT IN THE OBAMA ERA IT’S ENTIRELY PLAUSIBLE: Matt Drudge says spending bill passed because NSA has ‘dirt’ on John Boehner.

Matt Drudge of the influential Drudge Report news aggregation site expressed discontent over a federal spending bill that passed with votes from both Republicans and Democrats in the House.

The $1.1 trillion spending bill that runs through September 2015 is now up for a vote in the Democratically-led Senate. Many conservatives, including Drudge, are upset that the bill funds both Obamacare and President Obama’s immigration executive orders.

“Obama got EVERYTHING,” Drudge tweeted Friday. “NSA dirt on Boehner must be incredible. Chicago wins.”

I’ve seen similar speculation about John Roberts in the ObamaCare case. Sad what this country has become under the Obama Machine.

FROM ILYA SOMIN, a review of Damon Root’s Overruled: The Long War for Control of the Supreme Court.

#ICANTBREATHE: Face-sitting protest outside parliament against new porn rules.

Sex workers and campaigners have gathered in front of parliament to protest against changes to UK pornography regulations.

Organiser Charlotte Rose called the restrictions “ludicrous” and said they were a threat to freedom of expression.

Protesters say the list of banned activities includes “face-sitting”, and campaigners planned to carry out a mass demonstration of this while singing the Monty Python song Sit On My Face.

“These activities were added to this list without the public being made aware,” Charlotte Rose said. “They’ve done this without public knowledge and without public consent.

“There are activities on that list that may be deemed sexist, but it’s not just about sexism, it’s about censorship. What the government is doing is taking our personal liberties away without our permissions.”

Yeah, that’s not an unintended consequence, it’s the whole point.

HOW’S THAT HOPEY-CHANGEY STUFF WORKIN’ OUT FOR YA? (CONT’D): Wealth gap widens between whites and minorities. “Pew researchers — analyzing data from the Federal Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances— found that the gap between whites and blacks has reached its highest point since 1989. The wealth ratio for whites-to-Hispanics is at a level not seen since 2001.”

AMTRAK, and the resurgence of the non-delegation doctrine.

JUAN WILLIAMS: Hacked Sony e-mails expose white liberal hypocrisy on race.

SHANNEN DEE WILLIAMS: Black Women’s Lives Matter.

December 14, 2014

PUNCH BACK TWICE AS HARD: ‘You are a ‘Teabagger!” Long Island Woman Receives $1.12 Million For False Prosecution.

Southhampton cops searched her and found a legally owned rifle that she was transporting from a nearby rifle range. She contends a deputy sheriff arrived on the scene later and said to her, “I bet you are one of those Tea Party people.” When Genovese said she’s gone to Tea Party rallies, he allegedly said, “You’re a real right-winger, aren’t you?” and “You are a ‘Teabagger’” and then added that she’d be arrested for terrorism to make an example of other “right wingers.”

That’s just pathetic. Glad she hit ‘em hard in the pocketbook. I think someone should also refer this to the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division for . . . what? Why are you laughing?

P.J. O’ROURKE: They Made Me Write About Lena Dunham. “The young people in Girls are miserable, peevish, depressed, hate their bodies, themselves, their life, and each other. They occupy apartments with the size and charm of the janitor’s closet, shared by The Abominable Roommate. They dress in clothing from the flophouse lost-and-found and are groomed with a hacksaw and gravel rake. They are tattooed all over with things that don’t even look like things the way a anchor or a mermaid or a heart inscribed ‘Mom’ does, and they’re only a few years older than my daughters.”

RICHARD FERNANDEZ IS POSTING UPDATES ON THE Sydney Cafe Siege.

As most readers may know by now, a gunman or gunmen has taken about dozen hostages (or more, accounts differ) prisoner in a cafe in Martin Place, which is the ceremonial heart of Sydney. It’s the Cenotaph war memorial and but a stone’s throw from the US Embassy. The US embassy has warned citizens in country to be aware of their surroundings, in sense of being on guard against possible assailants.

The scene of the incident is an upscale cafe, which now has a black “shahada” flag draped across it, saying “there is no God but Allah”. There are reports that the police have rounded up a number of the suspect’s associates in Auburn, which is a suburb heavily populated by Muslims.

Much more at the link.

THIS MICROBIOME STUFF IS EITHER A FAD OR A FIRST-CLASS MEDICAL REVOLUTION IN PROGRESS: Gut microbiota and Parkinson’s disease: Connection made.

GENE LYONS: No Defense For The Mistakes In the Rolling Stone Rape Story.

Preppy WASPs, of course, are America’s last acceptable criminal class. A journalist can “profile” them all she wants with no fear of chastisement. On a recent Slate podcast, Erdeley explained she’d decided to write about UVA’s heavy-drinking “elitist fraternity culture” even before she’d met “Jackie,” the alleged victim.

“Southern” was a big part of it, too. . . .

If Rolling Stone’s story reads like a Stephen King novel, that may be because it’s largely imaginary.

UVA pledge events take place during spring semester, not September; there was no fraternity party. The side door Jackie escaped from doesn’t exist. Her three friends say they encountered her about a mile from Phi Kappa Psi that night, telling a lurid, but very different story involving forced oral sex. Jackie had no visible wounds. It was she who insisted on keeping quiet.

They also say Erdeley never interviewed them.

Jackie’s alleged seducer “Drew” never belonged to the fraternity and denies ever dating Jackie — an easy alibi to break, unless true.

The scales having fallen from my eyes, I keep returning to the scene where guys outside an off-campus bar supposedly called Jackie a “feminazi bitch.”

“One flung a bottle at Jackie that broke on the side of her face,” we’re told, “leaving a blood-red bruise around her eye.”

Maybe an NFL quarterback could throw a beer bottle hard enough to break on somebody’s face, but I doubt it. The victim, however, would be more than bruised. She’d be lucky to survive.

And there would definitely be a police report.

Indeed. Interesting to see this coming from a Dem columnist generally regarded as part of the Hillary orbit.

NEIL TYSON THINKS THAT aliens would be shocked that humans are violent.

I do believe he’s unfamiliar with the scientific literature on the subject.

WAIT, WHAT WAS JOE BIDEN DOING IN NEW YORK? Eric Garner Protesters in NY Attack 2 Officers, ‘Bag of Hammers’ Discovered.

I’D RATHER HAVE A GUN: Man Fights Off 3 Bear Attacks With 5″ Knife. I expect he’d rather have had a gun, too, but you go with what you’ve got.

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THE FUTURE OF LAW: I Am An Artisanal Attorney. “We—and many others like us—insist on authenticity in everything in our lives. We don’t want to eat. We want the fullness that only comes from a meal created by the human experience. We don’t want to drink. We want the buzz that is produced by the draught of a person’s skill. It occurred to me that people who demand realness in their food and homes should also demand it in their legal representation. That was when I became an artisanal attorney. . . . Like other artisans, I pay close attention to my ingredients and process; I am intimately involved in all stages of creation. Other attorneys print their documents on paper they buy in mass-produced boxes, tens of thousands of sheets at a time, using ink that mechanically jets onto the page. I make my own paper by hand, using the traditional methods of 14th-century book publishers, who printed their works on linen and vellum. The flax for the linen grows along the sides of a nearby swimming hole, and the plants’ growth is influenced by the laughter of children in the summer, when I pick it by hand. The vellum comes from the grass-fed cows of an area farm; to give the cows more agency in the vellum-making process, I let them choose the pumice I will treat their hides with after slaughter. I also make my own ink, using the ink of squid I raise myself in a PETA-approved salt-water aquarium in my office. You can meet all my squid during our initial meeting and pick which one you want for the ink on your will or healthcare power of attorney.”

A NEWER, LIGHTER Audi Q7.

VITAMIN D UPDATE: Vitamin D deficiency common, even in Sunshine State.

Related: 5 Important Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Vitamin D. Actually, InstaPundit readers probably did know these things.

I take Vitamin D every day. My supplement routine is still pretty much as described in this post, except that I stopped taking the fish oil because of research suggesting it might increase prostate cancer risk, and I’ve started taking Niagen.

GARY TAUBES, CALL YOUR OFFICE: Can High-Fructose Corn Syrup Make You Hungrier?

Distinct from sugar known as glucose (produced by the natural breakdown of complex carbohydrates), fructose is also a “simple” sugar and a natural component of fruit.

However, “in a series of studies we have found that when compared to glucose, the simple sugar, fructose, is a weaker suppressor of brain areas that help control appetite and the motivation to eat,” said study co-author Dr. Kathleen Page, an assistant professor of clinical medicine at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.

In other words, people are more likely to remain feeling hungry after a meal with lots of fructose versus one with lots of glucose.

Hmm.

GREEN ARROGANCE: Peru Is Indignant After Greenpeace Makes Its Mark on Ancient Site. “The Peruvian authorities said activists from the group damaged a patch of desert when they placed a large sign that promoted renewable energy near a set of lines that form the shape of a giant hummingbird. . . . Greenpeace issued a statement apologizing for the stunt at the archaeological site, about 225 miles south of Lima. Its international executive director, Kumi Naidoo, flew to Lima, but the Peruvian authorities were seething over the episode, which they said had scarred one of the country’s most treasured national symbols.” Worrying about environmental impacts is for the little people.

ADVOCACY JOURNALISM: So new DOJ figures come out showing that campus sexual assault is less common than off-campus sexual assault, and that the rate is a tiny fraction of what activists claim, and what’s the spin? Sexual assaults go unreported. Not even a mention of the other, narrative-threatening, findings.

IN THE MAIL: From Mitzi Perdue, Tough Man, Tender Chicken: Business and Life Lessons from Frank Perdue. Mitzi Perdue is a longtime InstaPundit reader, and this biography, which I opened up and read as soon as it arrived, is a great story of making it big through hard work, attention to detail, and focus on customers.

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TAXPROF ROUNDUP: The IRS Scandal, Day 584.

UPSIDE: PLENTY OF FACILITIES FOR THE AIRBRIDGE TO RESIST A RUSSIAN INVASION. EU funds help Poland build ‘ghost’ airports. “The European Union has given Poland more than 100 million euros ($125 million) to build at least three “ghost” airports in places where there are not enough passengers to keep them in business. The result is gleaming new airport terminals which, even at the peak of the holiday season, echo to the sound of empty concourses and spend millions trying to attract airlines.”

SHOCKER: “Green” Europe Fudging Car Emissions Numbers.

Europeans sip gasoline while Americans guzzle it, or at least that’s how the story goes. But as the Economist reports, once you look under the hood, Europe’s fuel efficiency emissions standards are a little suspect. . . .

Contrast that with the U.S., which, under President Obama, has enacted some very strong fuel efficiency standards that are putting a sizable dent in our nation’s carbon footprint, even without the kinds of test fudging seen across the Atlantic. Europe likes to think itself a paragon of green policies, but with electricity costs spiraling and coal consumption rising, it looks like it’s having to resort to some fuzzy math to defend its eco-friendly status.

Pretty typical, for the EU.

IT BEATS A REAL JOB: Why Would Anyone Sign Up to Be the Next Mary Landrieu? “She was trounced by a Republican and abandoned by Democrats. Now her party has to convince a promising young politician to risk running the same gauntlet.”

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HOWIE CARR ON THE PEOPLE WHO ONCE CALLED THEMSELVES “THE REALITY-BASED COMMUNITY:” Moonbats defend fable not the facts. “Not familiar with Rolling Stone? What Tiger Beat used to be for teenybopper girls, Rolling Stone is for the Pajama Boy generation . . . . The UVA fiasco is what happens when they try to write something other than a mash note to a heroin addict.”

RAND PAUL’S REVENGE: Now That The Senate Is Done Investigating Torture, Will Drone Killings Be Next?

President Obama’s targeted killing program has been one of the more confounding strategical decisions of his presidency. For liberal supporters who voted to elect a constitutional-law professor in 2008 and a candidate who had campaigned against harsh interrogation practices like waterboarding, it would have been hard to imagine that just years later they’d see a president who keeps a “kill list” of suspected terrorists. . . .

“I was not satisfied with the legal analysis that I read in the classified document by the Department of Justice,” says Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, who is on the Intelligence Committee. “To me, when an American is involved, it raises very different questions then when we are striking a foreign terrorist.” Anwar al-Awlaki, an American citizen who had worked with al-Qaida, was killed in a 2011 drone strike under legal authority the administration derived from the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force.

Details about how drones are used to kill terrorists remain unknown, a fact leaders on Capitol Hill harbor concerns about. Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., who is in line to be the next Senate Foreign Relations chairman, said it’s an area ripe for oversight.

President Obama says he’s really good at killing people.

ED DRISCOLL: At Harvard, A Primal Scream.

NEW DEMANDS ON MEN IN THE WORKPLACE: “Women have no idea what men in the workplace are dealing with when they work with women. And men, despite what the author thinks, are not there to babysit women by telling them to ask for raises, brushing away tears and ‘twisting’ women’s arms to ask for her own promotion.”

Is it any wonder so many men are on strike?

VIDEO: Prof. Jacobson: “Any man on campus is at risk.”

December 13, 2014

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TEACH BOYS NOT TO LIE ABOUT RAPE BY TEACHERS: Principal sobs as she reveals how pupil’s false affair claims ended her career and turned ‘everyone against her’ before judge laughed them out of court.

Yeah, this is like a grand convergence of InstaPundit themes here. . . . But false accusations do a lot of harm. Perhaps as women face more of them, society as a whole will take more note.

EUROPE WOULD HAVE BEEN VASTLY BETTER OFF IF THIS HAD SPREAD, AS AUTHORITIES FEARED: Remembering The 1914 Christmas Truce.

LOOKING AT AN EARLIER QUESTIONABLE CAMPUS RAPE PIECE IN ROLLING STONE BY NINA BURLEIGH, Tom Maguire notices a pattern.

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BUT FOLLOW THE LINK FOR JOE BIDEN’S HISTORY OF VIOLENT ASSAULT AND DEATH THREATS: Semi-retired president: “I spend most of my time watching ESPN in the morning.”

SOON, THE FLOODGATES WILL OPEN: SMU Cited For Inadequate Response To Male Victim’s Complaint Of Sexual Assault.

I WONDER WHERE IT CAME FROM: California Battling Worst Whooping Cough Epidemic In 70 Years.

SEAN COLLINS: Rolling Stone And The Myth Of A Rape Epidemic.

HAPPY 12/13/14!

JAMES W. CEASER: The Flight from Reason on Campus, And the madness of crowds.

“AFFIRMATIVE CONSENT” GETS TRAGIC: “An Iowa state lawmaker says he loved visiting his wife at a nursing home before her death at age 79. But prosecutors have filed felony charges against him, saying that her Alzheimer’s made her unable to consent to his sexual desires.” Note the phrasing. Now imagine the genders reversed.

Much more detailed thoughts from Eugene Volokh.

BUT WHAT KIND OF SHIRTS WERE THEY WEARING WHEN THEY PERFORMED THIS RESEARCH? Scientists: Rosetta Data Indicate Earth’s Water Didn’t Come From Comets.

HE SOUNDS LIKE A PUTZ, BUT UNLESS MIT KNOWS SOMETHING I DON’T (AND THEY MIGHT) THIS SEEMS KINDA STALINIST: Prof: MIT Hospitalized Me For Ferguson Tweets. “A tenured professor of literature at MIT is claiming that the school institutionalized him for ranting about academia’s response to Ferguson on Twitter.”

YEAH, THAT’S PRETTY MUCH MY TAKE: Forget Hydrogen Cars, and Buy a Hybrid. If we had, say, orbital solar plants providing the power to electrolyze water then a hydrogen fuel economy might make sense. But if you’re making your hydrogen using fossil fuels. . . .

I drove a hydrogen fuel car for Popular Mechanics a while back. Here’s my review.

I LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING THESE EVERYWHERE FOR A WHILE: You Can Now Make GIFs Directly from YouTube.

WELL, YES: The Government’s Mandatory Calorie Counts May Be Hazardous to Your Health.

In a Reynolds Administration, the position of Food Czar will be held not by Michelle Obama, but by Gary Taubes.

UPDATE: Really? Really? People are giving me crap in the comments over an imaginary Reynolds Administration having imaginary czars? Well yes, yes they are.

IN THE MAIL: From Ryk E. Spoor, Paradigms Lost.

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TAXPROF ROUNDUP: The IRS Scandal, Day 583.

OOPS: Feinstein Torture Report Polling Badly.

It turns out, however, that about half of Americans, who’ve been witnessing bomb attacks and barbaric beheadings, are just fine with the nasty CIA questioning and see real value in preventing future losses of American lives in unprovoked and unanticipated attacks. Rasmussen Reports this week surveyed 1,000 likely voters and found that 49% agreed with both Republican and Democrat former intelligence chiefs that such questioning produced valuable information that protected the country.

A similar percentage (47%) believe such aggressive interrogation methods should be used against these captives. Thirty-three percent were opposed while 20% claimed to be unsure.

Forty-nine percent of Democrats oppose enhanced interrogation. But those types evenly divide on whether the information gathered is valuable regardless.

Among Republicans and independents, the lines are clear. A majority of GOP members (64%) and a plurality of independents (48%) are good with water-boarding etc.

While 69% of Republicans and 46% of unaffiliateds believe valuable intel comes from them. The more that respondents have followed the Feinstein report and its torture allegations, the more value they see in such severe interrogations.

Interestingly, you get similar results from this YouGov poll. Interestingly, if you click through to the crosstabs there you find that more women than men think the Feinstein report has hurt American national security.

So was releasing the report (1) A partisan tactic that fizzled because the Dems didn’t know how it would poll; (2) A base-rallying technique; or (3) A bold act of principle done in the face of known unfavorable polling?

Meanwhile, most damning in the YouGov poll is that hardly anyone, of any gender or party, thinks the CIA is under the control of the President and Congress.

GLEICHSCHALTUNG! Next Time You Visit a National Park, You Might Get a Lecture on Climate Change.

Ettling has spent his summers working as a park ranger at Crater Lake National Park in Oregon for nearly a decade. He is on a mission to teach visitors that man-made global warming is real. But climate change can be a touchy subject. So Ettling devised a strategy. When a park visitor casts doubt on global warming, he makes an appeal to their pocketbook.

“I try to shift the conversation away from polar bears and ice caps,” Ettling says. “I tell people there are a lot of things they can do to save money on their electric bill that will also help the environment. Usually, I can get through to them that way.”

Do they pitch ObamaCare, too?

I THINK I’M GETTING AN INKLING OF WHY BAR-FAILURE RATES ARE UP: UCLA law professor learns Ferguson-related exam question taboo. “Law school exams often present legal conundrums ripped from headlines of the day, but one UCLA law professor is apologizing for basing a test question on what is apparently a taboo subject — the fallout from the police shooting of a black man in Ferguson, Mo.” Grow up. It’s already hard enough to get a job in law without gaining a reputation for being hothouse flowers with pre-chipped shoulders.

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IT’LL BE HARD FOR THE RIGHT TO RESPOND IN KIND BECAUSE THERE ARE SO FEW LEFT-LEANING LEGISLATURES LEFT: Liberal group plots to catch GOP state pols being racist and sexist.

The leader of a group hoping to improve liberals’ fortunes at the state level revealed on Friday plans to start tracking conservative state legislators based on the assumption that “someone’s going to say something about black people” or women.

The comments came at the first ever conference of the State Innovation Exchange (SiX), the Left’s attempt to counter conservative policy successes that have followed Republican victories at the state level.

“We’re working with David Brock and Media Matters and American Bridge who have trackers that we can send out to monitor the debate on some bills that you all might be running,” Nick Rathod, executive director of SiX, said. “I think in many legislatures my understanding is that a lot of legislatures stream their floor debates but don’t necessarily transcribe it or capture it in any kind of way. And so we want to start capturing them on that. I think we know, someone’s going to say something about black people. Someone’s going to say something about women. Someone is going to say something.”

Hey, I’ve got an absurdly sexist — and probably racist — legislator from a red state for you right here:

I don’t keep up with football, except college football. Unless it’s Eli Manning or Peyton Manning. Eli and Peyton don’t do sexual assaults against people, other than their wives.

Run with it! What? Oh, right. . . .

DAVID HARSANYI: The GOP Establishment Needs To Get Over Its Fear Of Primary Fights. They’re not afraid of primary fights. They just prefer coronations.

NICK GILLESPIE: Journalistic Hypocrisy Over Hacked Emails vs. Celebrity Pics.

It was just a few months ago that everybody and his grandmother was truly livid—or at least feigned anger before firing up our search engines—when hackers released naked pictures of celebrities ranging from Jennifer Lawrence to Kate Upton to Dave Franco. Curiously, such outrage is almost completely missing in the media’s response to the massive hack attack against Sony Pictures Entertainment, which may be linked to the North Korean government and has dumped private emails, contracts, files of unreleased movies, and more all across the Internet.

This time around, there is unapologetic prurience at the chance to get a real behind-the-scenes look at an industry long notorious for its wicked, backbiting, and hypocritical ways. Big-shot producer Scott Rudin tells Sony co-chair Amy Pascal he thinks Angelina Jolie is “a minimally talented spoiled brat”? A-List director David Fincher is as difficult as Hitler was anti-Semitic? Tell us more!

Whatever the differences in public responses, the episodes underscore two basic points that are worth learning fast: First, nobody cares about other people’s privacy, especially if the divulged material is juicy enough. Second, privacy is itself a highly fluid concept that will have probably changed yet again by the time you finish reading this article. Once upon a time, for instance, the Supreme Court ruled that federal agents didn’t need warrants to tap phones. Privacy is invented more than it is discovered.

And if journalists didn’t have double standards, they’d have no standards at all.

I DON’T THINK HE SHOULD RUN. BUT IF HE DOES, HIS SLOGAN SHOULD BE “I FUCKING TOLD YOU SO.” As Romney Warned, Russian Nuclear Aggression Rises In Face of American Weakness.

PETER SUDERMAN: Jonathan Gruber is a Liar. Was He a Liar Under Oath?

He seems to have spoken “glibly” on multiple occasions.

As The Hill notes, in a late 2010 lecture to students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where Gruber is a faculty member, he talked about the health law and described his role in its creation, saying, “Full disclaimer: I’m going to describe it objectively, but I helped write it.”

In another 2010 video, captured by C-SPAN and posted at Townhall, Gruber also noted his bias in favor of the law while claiming to have helped write it. “Once again, unabashed, I helped write the federal [health care] bill as well,” he said. That remark was made the same month that Obamacare was signed into law.

Two years later, Gruber hadn’t changed his story. In a now-infamous 2012 lecture on the law’s health exchanges at Noblis, Gruber not only said that states that don’t set up exchanges don’t have access to tax subsidies, he also referred to the “the one bit of the bill I actually wrote.”

The issue isn’t whether those statements were glib. It’s whether they were true. (Notably, when asked by Rep. Scott Desjarlais (R-Tenn.) whether other embarassing videotaped statements were lies or not, Gruber would only say that his remarks were “glib and thoughtless and really inexcusable.”)

There is no way to reconcile his multiple past statements with the statements he made this week while under oath. Either Gruber spent two years lying about his role in writing the law, or he was lying this week in his sworn congressional testimony.

Will the statute of limitations run before Attorney General Kurt Schlichter takes over DOJ under President Cruz?

December 12, 2014

THE SCIENCE IS SETTLED: Study proves high heels do have power over men. I suppose this means they should be banned, in the name of equality.

BUT REMEMBER, IF YOU HAD ANY DOUBTS YOU’RE A “RAPE DENIALIST” OR SOMETHING: ABC: Witnesses ignored by Rolling Stone undermine another key part of “Jackie” narrative.

Related: As UVA Rape Story Falls Apart; Feminists Try to Save ‘Rape Culture’ Narrative. “Rape culture” is real. Just in places like ISIS’ Iraq or Boko Haram’s Nigeria, not on American college campuses. Strangely, feminists are completely uninterested in doing anything about those places.

GOVERNMENT BY CROMNIBUS: Blind, Deaf and Dumb. The important thing is that members of Congress get to reward donors without taking clear responsibility.

Related: House Quietly Passes Monstrous, Privacy-Invading Intel Bill.

CREEPING SHARIA: I’m Offended By The UK’s Porn Restrictions—And You Should Be Too.

WELL, THIS IS DISAPPOINTING: Ebola Vaccine Trial Halted Over Side Effects. “Researchers reported four cases of mild joint pain in the hands and feet in people who got the shot 10 to 15 days earlier; before the joint pain kicked in, a handful of subjects experienced mild fever. . . . The trial is scheduled to resume Jan. 5 in Geneva after the hospital is able to determine if the joint pain symptoms were ‘benign and temporary.’”

12 DAYS OF DEALS: Christmas Deals in Home Goods.

Also, $25 off the Kindle Fire HD7.

RICH VAIL COULD USE SOME HELP. I hit his PayPal.

SO I’VE RESISTED POSTING MUCH ABOUT THE DETAILS OF MY OWN WORKOUTS, because I don’t think there’s anything exceptional about them beyond what you can get from Rippetoe, and there’s nothing more boring than a middle-aged man going on and on about his workouts. But people keep asking so here’s a bit of background.

I thought I was overtraining this fall — felt sluggish, tended to just run out of gas at the end on the heavy lifts, etc. — and so trimmed back to fewer exercises, jettisoning the deadlift. This turned out, after a couple of months when I finally developed noticeable symptoms, to be a sinus infection, not overtraining, so now I’m gradually returning to the full routine. But at this point my lifts (all for 3 sets of 5) are: Squats: 280lbs. Overhead Press: 140lbs. Rows, 200lbs. Bench: 160lbs. I also do shoulder lateral raises, currently with a pair of 50lb dumbbells. These are respectable, but not anything to brag about, but I’ve come up quite a bit in the year or so that I’ve been doing the Rippetoe method with serious intensity. I only recently switched from dips to bench presses (I tend to avoid those because of a rotator cuff tear many years ago, but so far so good) and the rows have just been kind of stuck. I’m in the process of switching from the rows to the power cleans. I found those intimidating at the beginning but now they seem less so.

I don’t drink a gallon of milk a day. (Sorry, Rip, I just can’t do it.) I do drink a glass of the Cruze Dairy unhomogenized pastured whole milk before a workout though. It tastes as good as ice cream, and probably has as much butterfat. . . .

Helen measured me a while back, and since starting last year I had gained 3″ around my shoulders, 4″ around my chest, 2″ around my biceps, and 1/2″ around my waist. We didn’t measure legs, but my thighs are noticeably bigger around, and my butt is both bigger and differently shaped, which is going to necessitate a new cut of jeans — the Bill’s Khakis jeans I’ve worn for years now feel kinda tight in the thighs when I cross my legs. I’ve also found that some jackets, etc., don’t fit right any more, but I can live with that. My weight is up about 15 lbs., but most of that seems to be muscle. Sorry, no Geraldo-style shirtless selfies, though.

As I mentioned earlier, my blood pressure has stayed low, my resting heart rate is 62, and at my last checkup in September, my doctor pronounced my bloodwork “terrific” and my EKG “pristine.” This despite the fact that I’m currently doing no cardio at all except, occasionally, running stairs for 90-second intervals. No guarantee that you’ll see the same results if you try the Rippetoe approach, but it’s certainly worked for me. In particular, the computer-related aches and pains in my back, neck, hips shoulders, elbows, wrists, etc. are all gone. It would be worth it just for that, given how much I’m on the computer. . . .

UPDATE: Link was bad before; fixed now. Sorry!