Wednesday, August 20, 2014

(11:02 PM)

WILL BAUDE: Is there any good argument against the right to record the cops?

(10:36 PM)

JOHN HINDERAKER: “In recent months, Barack Obama has crossed an important threshold. He has always shown contempt for his opponents; now he shows contempt for his supporters. He has quit pretending to be a leader, and more or less quit pretending to be a president. On the right and the center, he has become a joke.”

(10:33 PM)

EVERYTHING IS GOING SWIMMINGLY: Thousands of armed rebels flood Yemen capital.

(10:21 PM)

SO GIVEN TEXAS PRECEDENT, IS THIS AN INDICTABLE ABUSE OF POWER? Excerpts of text messages exchanged Saturday between University of Houston Chancellor and President Renu Khator and state Sen. John Whitmire of Houston.

(10:20 PM)

I DUNNO, IT’S ONLY CONJECTURE WITHOUT AN EXPERIMENT: Yep: MSNBC would react quite differently if Tea Partiers threw rocks at them.

(10:16 PM)


(10:04 PM)

TECHNOLOGY: Corvette Valet Mode Is Like A Russian Dashcam For Parking.

(09:00 PM)

IS THERE ANYTHING IT CAN’T DO? Coffee may keep your ears from ringing.

(08:55 PM)

TEACH YOUR CHILDREN WELL: Book: My Parents Open Carry.

UPDATE: Much amusement at the Amazon reviews.

(08:03 PM)


It ain’t fiction, just a natural fact. Isn’t this a nice bit of ’90s innocence? Whatever happened to MC Skat Kat?

UPDATE: Oh yeah, how could I forget this?

(07:00 PM)

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(06:49 PM)

FASTER, PLEASE: Harvard Researcher on Aging: There’s no ‘limit on the human lifespan.’ “Can we one day live to 150? I don’t see why not; it’s just a matter of when.”

(06:35 PM)

FASTER, PLEASE: Toxic Bacteria Safely Shrink Cancer.

(06:25 PM)

SCANDAL: “A very intellectually dishonest column by Catherine Rampell of the Wash Post.”

(06:11 PM)

WELL, THAT’S ADMIRABLE: Spike Lee On Ferguson, MO: ‘I Just Hope That Things Will Really Blow Up.’

(06:05 PM)

WELL, THIS IS THE 21ST CENTURY, YOU KNOW: Big computation brings your ideas into 3D.

(06:04 PM)

JULIETTE TURNER: What Rick Perry Doesn’t Know. “What Rick Perry probably doesn’t know is that he has a lot in common with John Tyler, the tenth president of the United States. Having just completed extensive research on President Tyler for my upcoming book Our Presidents Rock, I can state that the commonalities between the two men are uncannily obvious, in more ways than one. . . . both men were persecuted for issuing a veto.”

(05:30 PM)

IT’S PARTISAN HACKS ALL THE WAY DOWN: Perry Grand Juror Was An Active Democratic Party Delegate During Jury Proceedings. “Rho Chalmers, who disclosed to the Houston Chronicle yesterday that she was a member of the grand jury that indicted Texas Gov. Rick Perry, was an active delegate to the Texas Democratic Party convention during grand jury proceedings. Chalmers’ active participation in Democratic state politics is important because she claimed yesterday to the Houston Chronicle that her decision to indict Perry, a Republican, was not based on politics.”

Call me cynical, but I don’t believe her at all.

(05:22 PM)

THE NARRATIVE SEEMS TO BE BREAKING DOWN: Missouri cop was badly beaten before shooting Michael Brown, says source.

Darren Wilson, the Ferguson, Mo., police officer whose fatal shooting of Michael Brown touched off more than a week of demonstrations, suffered severe facial injuries, including an orbital (eye socket) fracture, and was nearly beaten unconscious by Brown moments before firing his gun, a source close to the department’s top brass told

“The Assistant (Police) Chief took him to the hospital, his face all swollen on one side,” said the insider. “He was beaten very severely.”

According to the well-placed source, Wilson was coming off another case in the neighborhood on Aug. 9 when he ordered Michael Brown and his friend Dorain Johnson to stop walking in the middle of the road because they were obstructing traffic. However, the confrontation quickly escalated into physical violence, the source said..

“They ignored him and the officer started to get out of the car to tell them to move,” the source said. “They shoved him right back in, that’s when Michael Brown leans in and starts beating Officer Wilson in the head and the face.

Well, it’ll be interesting to see how this plays.

(05:15 PM)

JAMES BOVARD: Eric Holder’s police shooting record? Dismal: When the attorney general had the chance to be tough on police shootings, he did next to nothing.

(05:04 PM)

WELL, DANG: A New Surgery Risk. “Thousands of Americans every year develop an abnormal heart rhythm after having major surgery. These episodes have long been considered a fleeting phenomenon that is generally not a cause for concern. But a large new study suggests that doctors should take these abnormal heart rhythms, known as atrial fibrillation, or A-fib, more seriously. It found that patients who experienced one or more episodes after surgery had a striking increase in their risk of having a future stroke. The findings are likely to encourage doctors to potentially monitor and in some cases treat the patients who experience them.”

(04:27 PM)

ASHE SCHOW: Judge denies university’s motion to dismiss student’s due process lawsuit against college. “According to Benning’s lawsuit, he and his accuser engaged in consensual sexual intercourse twice during the summer of 2012. After the relationship deteriorated in the fall of 2012, Benning began seeing a friend of his accuser. Following this, Benning alleges, his accuser filed two informal complaints with the university claiming she had been sexually assaulted.”

(04:01 PM)

SEE, THIS SEEMS A BIT HUBRISTIC: With New Delivery Service, Uber Declares War on Google and Amazon. But maybe not! “Tuesday, Uber announced a pilot program for what it calls Uber Corner Store, a service that would allow Uber users in the Washington D.C. area to get staple items like toothpaste and bandages delivered from local stores. According to a blog post, the program will only last a few weeks, but it hints at CEO Travis Kalanick’s long-term vision for Uber, which is to transform the company from a pure transportation play into a full-fledged logistics company.”

(03:00 PM)

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(02:43 PM)

SPYING ON ASHLEY MADISON USERS TO FIND OUT WHY WOMEN CHEAT: “Middle-age women who cheat on their husbands are looking for passion and sex, but don’t want to divorce their husbands over it, new research suggests. The new data comes from a sample of married women who used, a dating website aimed at people seeking to cheat on their partners. The new conclusions challenge the popular conception that women cheat because they are generally unhappy with their relationships, said study lead author Eric Anderson, a professor of sport, masculinity and sexuality at the University of Winchester in England.” Emma Bovary was unavailable for comment.

(02:30 PM)

WELL, THAT’S COMFORTING: Researchers Hack Into Michigan’s Traffic Lights: Security flaws in a system of networked stoplights point to looming problems with an increasingly connected infrastructure.

See, lousy security is why I’m bearish on the Internet Of Things.

(02:00 PM)

WAR ON PHOTOGRAPHY: Man arrested, strip-searched after photographing NYPD wins $125,000. “The settlement, first reported Monday by the Daily News, comes weeks after the NYPD reminded its officers that it was legal to peacefully record police activity. That department-wide memo followed the videotaped NYPD arrest of a man who died after being subdued by a chokehold last month.”

(01:30 PM)

I THINK I LIKE THEM BETTER ALREADY: Google’s Self-Driving Cars Flout the Speed Limit Just Like You Do.

(01:00 PM)

EMILY SMITH: In Relationships, Be Deliberate. “Traditionalists tend to think cohabiting before marriage is a bad idea, and progressives are more likely to embrace it, but new research says that’s not the best way to approach the question: The important thing is how couples make the leap into a shared life.”

(12:13 PM)

PAUL RAHE: Ferguson in Perspective: Jason Riley Tells Hard Truths.

(11:00 AM)

IN THE MAIL: From David Weber & Jane Lindskold, Treecat Wars.

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(10:58 AM)

TAXPROF ROUNDUP: The IRS Scandal, Day 468.

Note this from Laura Ingraham: “What do you think would have happened, guys, if tea party activists, right, came to Washington D.C. after the IRS scandal broke and decided to start smashing windows, rampaging through neighborhoods, throwing fire bombs. What do you think Eric Holder and Barack Obama would do? Would they start saying, ‘Well, we understand that people are angry, we really get your emotion here, but this isn’t acceptable. Do you really think there would have been this nuanced language, this emoting that has become the pastime of this administration?” Well, that’s not entirely off the table, these days.

(10:47 AM)

LIZ PEEK: 6 Reasons Obamacare Can Win the Senate for the GOP.

(10:42 AM)

YOU KNOW, THERE’S A REAL LYNCH MOB MENTALITY HERE. ‘Simply crazy’; TPM’s Josh Marshall thinks Gov. Jay Nixon, D-Mo., might be nuts. I’m glad to see Josh noticing this.

(10:30 AM)

ANNALS OF ANTI-SEMITISM: Edinburgh a Sad Symbol of Anti-Israeli Intolerance.

Each August, the Edinburgh Festival Fringe puts on edgy cultural fare that draws capacity audiences from across the world. A play called The City, staged by the Incubator Theatre of Jerusalem, was hardly the most challenging production in the festival repertoire, a murder mystery sung in rhyme and inspired by hip-hop, hardboiled fiction, and 1940s detective films. Yet it became controversial in the wake of Israel’s forceful action in Gaza to neutralize rockets being fired into the country and destroy a labyrinth of tunnels used for terrorist attacks. The City had just one performance, and then was axed when the Fringe management became unnerved by the scale of protests provoked by the Israeli nationality of the company. The police were less surprised, and their impassive (some would say supine) response sealed the production’s fate.

I spoke to several members of the cast, liberal-minded folk who were surprised that Gaza should be such a potent issue in Scottish politics. In Scotland the Israel-Palestine dispute is currency used by two left-wing parties that are vying for supremacy: the ruling Scottish National party (SNP) and the Labour Party. They try to outdo each other in their radicalism on the issue in order to appeal to middle-class liberals and a growing number of Muslim voters, most hailing from Pakistan.

But according to Scotland’s Jewish leadership, “the disproportionate obsession with Israel in Scottish public life . . . has itself made many Jewish people very uncomfortable, whatever their views on the current conflict.” The Scottish Council of Jewish Communities (SCoJeC) issued a statement on August 10 claiming that it was adversely affecting everyday community relations. Scotland historically has frowned upon anti-Semitism, but the new situation reflects the mounting insecurity felt by European Jews from Manchester to Berlin. . . . Back in the 1930s, the Scottish media, at least, defied the agitators with scathing editorials. But this time none have appeared, news coverage has been patchy, and only several arts correspondents, such as Joyce McMillan, Tiffany Jenkins, and Brian Ferguson, have denounced the surrender to intimidation.

And yet most American Jews probably find the Tea Party scarier.

And those Pakistani voters are the fruit of Labour’s secret 1990s plan to lure immigrants to gain votes and dilute traditional British culture.

As Eugene Volokh says, in a democracy, when you let immigrants in, you are letting in your future rulers. Choose carefully. Most of the British Jews now concerned with growing antisemitism probably voted for Labour, because they thought it was progressive and caring.

(10:19 AM)

DAN MARKEL UPDATE: One month later, FSU professor investigation continues.

(10:00 AM)

LAW ENFORCEMENT: Gee, Officer Krupke, You’ve got Humvee, a Helo, a Drone and an M-16.

(09:00 AM)

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(08:57 AM)

WASHINGTON POST: Was Romney Right? His Most Spot-On Predictions.

(08:54 AM)

SEEMS LEGIT: Mark Udall Spent Your Tax Dollars on A Wealth Advisory Firm. “According to reports released by the Secretary of the Senate, Udall used official funds to pay BSW Wealth Partners, a Boulder, Colorado-based independent wealth adviser that was founded by a campaign donor, each year between 2011 and 2013.”

(08:47 AM)


(08:47 AM)

REPORT: Only 3 of 78 Arrested Protesters Were Ferguson Residents. The usual lefty idiots, I presume.

(08:30 AM)

WHY IS THIS MAN SMILING? Rick Perry Booked At Texas Courthouse, Gets Mug Shot.

UPDATE: Congrats To Texas Dems For Turning Rosemary Lehmberg’s Drunk-Driving Conviction Into National News.

(08:21 AM)

JUST ANOTHER CONVENIENT SCREWUP: Wisconsin union has no idea how that forged card got in there.

Dian Palmer, president of Service Employees International Union Healthcare Wisconsin, wants one thing to be perfectly clear: Her union takes its ethical responsibilities very seriously. So it’s just baffling to her how a forged signature was used to financially support the union’s political arm.

Palmer conceded in a Aug. 11 letter to a lawyer for Milwaukee-based Supportive Homecare Options Inc., that somebody apparently signed up one of the company’s employees to support the union’s Committee on Political Education without that employee’s knowledge or approval. But as far as who that was, well, the trail seems to have gone cold.

Until recently, I had no idea that Wisconsin was such a dirty state. It seemed so clean, until you looked under the covers.

(08:16 AM)

BENTHIC TREATY RENEGOTIATION — TOP SECRET: The Hill: Obama Heads Back To Vacation After Unexplained DC Trip, Leaving A Puzzle Behind Him.

(08:00 AM)

NO. NEXT QUESTION? Should Everyone Consume Less Sodium?

(07:49 AM)

USA TODAY EDITORIALIZES: Rick Perry’s Flimsy Indictment.

Politics as usual should not be a violation of criminal law. This ought to be obvious to anyone in a democratic society. But it does not seem to be well understood in Texas, where a special prosecutor in Austin persuaded a grand jury last week to indict Gov. Rick Perry, who was booked and fingerprinted on Tuesday.

Perry, a once and potential future candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, has been charged with misusing his office and coercing a public official. Sounds serious, until you look at the flimsy, two-page indictment. . . .

Beyond Perry, two other potential Republican presidential aspirants also face investigations. One, involving New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and lane closures at the George Washington Bridge, is a straightforward, legitimate focus of inquiry. But another, involving fundraising efforts on behalf of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, seems just as mired in politics as the Perry case.

It’s political lawfare, pure and simple.

(07:27 AM)

HIGHER EDUCATION TENURE GAP: Sexism, Or Productivity? Well, the only women who didn’t get tenure at my school basically just never wrote anything. So in that case, at least, it was clearly productivity.

(07:14 AM)


In the Twenties, cops had better guns than the military. Submachineguns and self-loading rifles were widespread in law enforcement before they ever were in the Army. People need to stop getting their history from Andy Griffith reruns. Frank Hamer didn’t gun Bonnie and Clyde down from ambush with a flintlock musket, you know.

In the Sixties, they’d have already turned the dogs and water cannons on the Ferguson protestors. In the Twenties, Andy and Barney would have broken the old Potato-Digger out of the armory and started mowing them down. The po-po used to be pretty quick to go weapons-free on unruly crowds, especially if such crowds were made up of black folk or commies.

Realistically speaking, the rate of police violence (like all violence) is probably at a low ebb, but in this age of social media, ubiquitous cameras, and the 24-hour news cycle, you get to hear about every bit of it. (And of course the media is 100% infallible when they report on police brutality, the way they are with gun-related stuff. We mock the “shoulder thing that goes up” utterances and then Gell-Mann our way across the page to nod in sage agreement at reported use-of-force abuses.)

Sure, in the old days, Officer Flatfoot walked a beat and said “Hi!” to the kids and helped people carry their groceries in. He also “tuned up” the occasional vagrant with some brass knuckles for giving him lip or helped a black guy ensure that the sun didn’t set on his back in Pleasantville, and everybody just shrugged and went on, because that’s how things were.

Let’s everybody be thankful that, so far, Ferguson 2014 hasn’t turned into either Los Angeles 1992 or Tulsa 1921.

True. What’s amazing about Ferguson is that, for all the sturm und drang, the casualty count is pretty light.

(07:00 AM)

K-12 IMPLOSION UPDATE: Pop Quiz: Who Skips School More Often, Students or Teachers?

(12:26 AM)

SOME YES, OTHERS NO: Can A Liberal Learn To Shoot?

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

(11:50 PM)

NEW YORK TIMES: Who Will Stand Up For The Christians? “Why is the world silent while Christians are being slaughtered in the Middle East and Africa? In Europe and in the United States, we have witnessed demonstrations over the tragic deaths of Palestinians who have been used as human shields by Hamas, the terrorist organization that controls Gaza. The United Nations has held inquiries and focuses its anger on Israel for defending itself against that same terrorist organization. But the barbarous slaughter of thousands upon thousands of Christians is met with relative indifference.”

(11:26 PM)

REPORT: Officer Darren Wilson Suffered “Orbital Blowout Fracture to Eye Socket” During Mike Brown Attack. That would certainly challenge the media narrative, wouldn’t it?

Related: Report: More than a dozen witnesses say Brown attacked officer.

(11:07 PM)


(11:03 PM)

#WARONMEN: Professors slam Pixar for sexist portrayal of boys in Disney films.

(11:00 PM)

MOST OF THESE STORIES WILL TURN OUT TO BE FALSE ALARMS: Hospital: Calif. patient may have been exposed to Ebola.

(10:49 PM)

IT’S MICHELLE FIELDS, with your daily News Nuggets.

(10:14 PM)


(10:04 PM)

FROM 2000 TO 2012, high-earners did worse, low-earners did better.

(10:01 PM)

THE UNTOLD STORY OF THE 31-Year Battle Over Flashdance. “The dancers and photographer who inspired one of the biggest pop culture touchstones of a generation have gone most of their lives unable to publicly talk about the credit they think they deserve. Until now.”

(09:00 PM)

IAIN MURRAY: Deputizing America: Sooner or later, we’ll all work for the State—unless we do something about it.

(08:04 PM)

TRYING SOMETHING NEW: Eating At A Restaurant Alone.

(07:00 PM)

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(06:30 PM)


Well, here’s my recipe for Poached Salmon.

But what about the prostate cancer link?

(06:05 PM)

21ST CENTURY PROBLEMS: Here’s a Terrible Idea: Robot Cars With Adjustable Ethics Settings. I’m setting mine on “Highly Punctual Sociopath.” Out of my way!

(05:03 PM)


(04:01 PM)


(03:00 PM)

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(02:46 PM)

ARTHUR BROOKS: Republicans Need To Break Out Of The Party Box.

They should try siding with people like this: Reason TV: Locked Out: A Hair Braider Fights Occupational Licensing. The GOP has tentatively taken a step in this direction by siding with Uber over regulators, but they need to expand that sort of thing to help people trying to climb onto the economic ladder.

(02:42 PM)

WHAT FACEBOOK DOESN’T SHOW YOU: It’s Not Just Your Imagination — There Are A Lot Of Old Posts In Your Facebook Feed. “It seems I don’t much care about my hometown or the people in it, I’m far more interested in feminist blogs than I am in technology or sports, I’m still hung up on New York after moving away last spring, and I’m apparently very interested in the goings on of someone I worked with at Pizza Hut when I was 16.”

With every change, Facebook gets crappier. All I want is an unfiltered feed of what my friends post, as they post it. Even “Most Recent” doesn’t seem to do that any more.

(02:30 PM)

FREE WILL: Our Microbiome May Be Looking Out for Itself.

Your body is home to about 100 trillion bacteria and other microbes, collectively known as your microbiome. Naturalists first became aware of our invisible lodgers in the 1600s, but it wasn’t until the past few years that we’ve become really familiar with them.

This recent research has given the microbiome a cuddly kind of fame. We’ve come to appreciate how beneficial our microbes are — breaking down our food, fighting off infections and nurturing our immune system. It’s a lovely, invisible garden we should be tending for our own well-being.

But in the journal Bioessays, a team of scientists has raised a creepier possibility. Perhaps our menagerie of germs is also influencing our behavior in order to advance its own evolutionary success — giving us cravings for certain foods, for example.

Maybe the microbiome is our puppet master.

Mess with me too much, I’m sending the Cipro down. Upside: Lots of marketing opportunities based on It’s not your fault you’re fat! It’s your gut bacteria!

(02:26 PM)

I HAVE MY OWN THEORY: “Why Obama won’t give the Ferguson speech his supporters want.”

UPDATE: From the comments:

Obama campaigned as a “Uniter”.

The moment he was elected, he governed as a “Divider”

He won reelection by carefully dividing.

At this point, all the unicorn dust has blown away.

Yeah, pretty much.

(02:22 PM)

HOPEY-CHANGEY: Average Price of Ground Beef Hits All-Time High. “Five years ago, in July 2009, the average price for a pound of ground beef was $2.147, according to the BLS. In those five years, the average price has climbed by $1.737 per pound–or almost 81 percent.”

(02:21 PM)

HOWARD KURTZ: Some Liberal Outlets Creating ‘Almost a Lynch Mob Mentality’ in Ferguson.

(02:20 PM)

OUT: CATCALLS ARE HORRIBLE AND SEXIST. In: “It had been a few months since I’d heard a cat call. Had I heard my last one and not even realized it?”

I guess the video was right.

(02:00 PM)

TRANSPARENCY: Government’s Response To Snowden? Strip 100,000 Potential Whistleblowers Of Their Security Clearances.

(01:49 PM)

READER BOOK PLUG: From Quent Cordair: Genesis (Idolatry Book 1). Currently $1.99 on Kindle.

(01:46 PM)

A READER EMAILS: “It might be time for a reminder that many of the folks protesting the shooting in Ferguson, MO are likely of the opinion that only the police and members of the military should have the right to carry guns.” Good point!

Meanwhile, I saw this on Facebook yesterday:


UPDATE: And by reader request, there’s this.

Screen Shot 2014-08-19 at 2.15.55 PM

(01:30 PM)

WELL, THIS IS THE 21ST CENTURY, YOU KNOW: Delaware becomes first state to give heirs broad digital assets access.

(01:14 PM)

IT’S COME TO THIS: Austin American-Statesman Destroys Democrats’ Narrative on the Perry Indictment. The Austin American-Statesman isn’t prone to destroying Democrats’ narratives, so that’s a big deal.

(01:11 PM)

THE PROBLEM IS ATTITUDE: Police Officer: ‘if you don’t want to get shot…just do what I tell you.’ “The thing is, Officer Dutta (pictured) is also an Adjunct Professor of Homeland Security and Criminal Justice at Colorado Technical University. And he uttered those words not in the heat of the moment, but in an opinion piece in the Washington Post responding to widespread criticism of police attitudes and tactics currently on display in Ferguson, Missouri, but increasingly common nationwide. . . . If you have the attitude that you are owed deference and instant obediance by the people around you, and that you are justified in using violence against them if they don’t comply, we already have a problem. That’s especially true if official institutions back you up, which they do.”

(01:10 PM)

WALTER OLSON: Let’s Demilitarize The Regulatory Agencies, Too. “Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Utah) has introduced a bill called the Regulatory Agency Demilitarization Act, citing such unsettling developments as a U.S. Department of Agriculture solicitation for submachine guns. 28 House Republicans have joined as sponsors, according to Ryan Lovelace at National Review. There has already been left-right cooperation on the issue, as witness the unsuccessful Grayson-Amash amendment in June seeking to cut off the military-surplus 1033 program. As both sides come to appreciate some of the common interests at stake in keeping law enforcement as peaceful and proportionate as situations allow, there will be room for more such cooperation.”

(01:08 PM)

JASON RILEY: “Let’s not pretend” our morgues are full of black men because of cops.

(01:03 PM)

A REDISTRIBUTIVE GOVERNMENT IS INHERENTLY A GOVERNMENT THAT SIDES WITH SOME CITIZENS AGAINST OTHERS: The Sinestro Theory of The Administrative State. “Over the past decade, we’ve witnessed a decline in the level of trust in government, and a rise in distrust, to levels unprecedented in American history. But to think this is an entirely new phenomenon is a mistake: trust in government has steadily declined since the Great Society and the Vietnam War under Lyndon Johnson. This graph from Pew with data running through the fall of 2013 shows how people answer the question: ‘How much of the time do you trust the government in Washington?’ The answer is pretty clear: not much at all.”

(01:00 PM)

TEN THINGS you didn’t know your Mac could do.

(12:56 PM)

SPENGLER: America Has Never Really Processed The Civil War.

Well, in some ways we’ve dealt with it better than many places with similar conflicts.

(12:07 PM)

RICHARD EPSTEIN: Paul Krugman Sure Is Clueless About Libertarianism. Like a lot of liberal commentators, he’s attacking the libertarians in his mind, not in the real world.

(11:00 AM)

IN THE MAIL: Slow Train to Arcturus.

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(10:53 AM)

TAXPROF ROUNDUP: The IRS Scandal, Day 467.

(10:45 AM)

NEW YORK TIMES: We Hate Rick Perry Because He’s An Evil Republican And Stuff, But This Indictment Is Still Ridiculous And Wrong.

(10:30 AM)

MEGAN MCARDLE: More Bad News For ObamaCare.

Last Monday, Jed Graham of Investor’s Business Daily reported that insurers say Affordable Care Act enrollment is shrinking, and it is expected to shrink further. Some of those who signed up for insurance on the exchanges never paid; others paid, then stopped paying. Insurers are undoubtedly picking up some new customers who lost jobs or had another “qualifying life event” since open enrollment closed. But on net, they expect enrollment to shrink from their March numbers by a substantial amount — as much as 30 percent at Aetna Inc., for example.

How much does this matter? As Charles Gaba notes, this was not unexpected: Back in January, industry expert Bob Laszewski predicted an attrition rate of 10 to 20 percent, which seems roughly in line with what IBD is reporting. However, Gaba seems to imply that this makes the IBD report old news, barely worth talking about, and I think that’s wrong, for multiple reasons.

The first is simply that we didn’t know what the attrition rate would be until we actually saw the final numbers, and it could have been lower — or higher — than Laszewski suggested. It’s always valuable to have actual data rather than guesstimates (and we should remember that we’re still getting data; we won’t know the final attrition rate until December).

The second is that while attrition was predicted, not everyone was necessarily expecting it. People are still citing enrollment figures from March as the number of people covered by Obamacare policies, even though that number didn’t tell us how many would ultimately pay. In fairness, the Barack Obama administration conveniently stopped issuing enrollment reports after that March peak, so there isn’t a better hard number to use.

It seems like wherever there’s a book, it’s being cooked.

(10:13 AM)

LIFE IN THE ERA OF HOPE AND CHANGE: Egypt Urges US Restraint Over Ferguson Unrest.

(10:00 AM)

THE PROBLEM WITH WEARABLE POLICE CAMERAS: Even When Police Do Wear Cameras, Don’t Count on Seeing the Footage: Police officers in San Diego have started wearing body cameras, but the department routinely denies requests for the video.

(09:00 AM)

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(08:40 AM)

ROGER L. SIMON: The Real Villain Of Ferguson. “The Great Society. There, I’ve said it. The Great Society, which I voted for and supported from the bottom of my heart, is the villain behind Ferguson. Ferguson is the Great Society writ large because the Great Society convinced, and then reassured, black people that they were victims, taught them that being a victim and playing a victim was the way to go always and forever. And then it repeated the point ad infinitum from its debut in 1964 until now — a conveniently easy to compute fifty years — as it all became a self-fulfilling prophecy. The Great Society and similar policies screwed black people to the wall. It was racist to the core without knowing it. Nobody used the N-word. In fact, it was forbidden, unless you were Dr. Dre or somebody. But it did its job without the word and did it better for being in disguise.”

UPDATE: By the way, the press coverage of Missouri Governor Jay Nixon on this doesn’t seem to emphasize that he’s a Democrat. But as the party of Bull Connor and Richard Daley, the Democrats have a long, ugly track record in dealing badly with urban unrest. . . .

(08:30 AM)

MARK TAPSCOTT: Are Republicans Smart Enough To Become The Party Of The Millennials?

Minorities and millennials were the core of President Obama’s 2008 and 2012 election victories, and, according to conventional political wisdom, will continue to be the twin anchors of the Democratic Party for the foreseeable future.

While African-Americans appear to be the modern equivalent of “Yellow Dog Democrats,” evidence is steadily growing that millennials are a different matter entirely. . . . Chamorro-Premuzic notes that millennials are more likely to highly value freedom and independence, and to overestimate their own talents and to underestimate the difficulties inherent in entrepreneurial endeavors.

The key here is millennials hate to be told what to do. They want to do things their way and be creative about it. Getting rich isn’t their first priority.

Interestingly, Silicon Valley no longer has the appeal it did to younger workers, according to Chamorro-Premuzic It is now seen among millennials as too big and greedy.

Regardless why millennials want to be independent, that desire could make them unusually receptive to a political message that emphasizes the importance of encouraging entrepreneurial freedom.

Besides, it’s the right thing to do.

(08:13 AM)

MICKEY KAUS: Nice Try, New Republic.

Imagine Mitt Romney, campaigning on a platform of raising the limit on taxable estates to $20 million dollars (from the current $5.3 million). Romney wins the election. He’s President! But he can’t get his estate tax bill through Congress. He decides he can’t wait! If Congress won’t act to boost the incentives to “job creators,” he will! His IRS announces that, as a matter of “prosecutorial discretion,” no estates under $20 million that fail to pay estate tax will be pursued by the IRS. Romney could grant case by case leniency power to IRS auditors and lawyers — but a blanket categorical free pass makes the law so much more predictable, don’t you think? And predictability is important for job creators! They have investments to make. You wouldn’t want an IRS with the leeway to play favorites — going soft on Republicans, or Romney donors, while coming down hard on dead multimillionaire Democrats.

Yeah, it’s supposed to work the other way, apparently.

(08:00 AM)

ROLL CALL: Republicans Gain Steam in House Races. “While political reporters and party strategists argue over whether there is an electoral wave ahead, district-level data demonstrates a difficult landscape for Democratic candidates in House races. Democrats believe, as competitive races become more engaged and the party exercises some of its financial advantage to get its message out, that some contests will turn in their favor. That scenario is possible, but in many cases Democratic challenges aren’t developing as quickly as expected and some Democratic incumbents are struggling to gain their footing. We’re changing The Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call ratings in a half dozen House races, all in favor of Republican candidates.”

(07:30 AM)

THE HILL: Poll finds sharp racial, political divide over Ferguson shooting. In 2012, Dems/Media deliberately fomented racial division over the Zimmerman case to boost black turnout. Not so clear that will help them with the Senate.

Also: Wearable camera petition tops 100K signatures on WH site.

Plus: Online petition urges Obama to ‘demilitarize.’

See, Obama won’t want to do that because then he’d be agreeing with Mark Steyn.

(07:05 AM)

IT’S ALL IN THE LANGUAGE: Yes, AP Violated Its Style Guide to Refer to Michael Brown, 18 as a ‘Youth.’

Here’s what my 2001 AP Broadcast Handbook says:

youth Don’t use it; people don’t talk that way. Use man or woman for individuals 18 and older, teenager, boy, or girl for people aged 13-18.

So there.