Wednesday's HOT MIC
Thanks, Jenny McCarthy!
Jazz Shaw at HotAir has the latest in anti-vaxxer madness: Manhattanites are afraid their dogs will get autism.
Jazz reacts to the news a bit more mildly than I would:
Look… I know this can be a touchy subject for portions of our audience. I get that some of you are concerned over reports you’ve seen which at least hint at a link between the fluids used in some vaccines and incidents of autism in children. I’m really not here today to pass judgement on that subject. The point is, we’re talking about dogs. Your dog isn’t autistic. Your dog isn’t going to become autistic
There's also a quote from the original source by a veterinarian who notes that autism has been diagnosed in a dog exactly...never.
Most anti-vaxxers are liberal loons. That's not that unusual given the importance lefties place on the opinions of celebrities, who largely drive this hysteria.
But, remember, they're the ones who believe in science.
A Norwegian nationalist group thought they saw monsters under the bed. Or was it burqa-clad women sitting in a bus?
A Norwegian anti-immigrant group has been roundly ridiculed after members apparently mistook a photograph of six empty bus seats posted on its Facebook page for a group of women wearing burqas.
“Tragic”, “terrifying” and “disgusting” were among the comments posted by members of the closed Fedrelandet viktigst, or “Fatherland first”, group beneath the photograph, according to screenshots on the Norwegian news website Nettavisen.
Other members of the 13,000-strong group, for people “who love Norway and appreciate what our ancestors fought for”, wondered whether the non-existent passengers might be carrying bombs or weapons beneath their clothes. “This looks really scary,” wrote one. “Should be banned. You can’t tell who’s underneath. Could be terrorists.”
Further comments read: “Ghastly. This should never happen,” “Islam is and always will be a curse,” “Get them out of our country – frightening times we are living in,” and: “I thought it would be like this in the year 2050, but it is happening NOW,” according to thelocal.no and other media.
The photograph, found on the internet, was posted “for a joke” last week by Johan Slåttavik, who has since described himself as “Norway’s worst web troll and proud of it”, beneath a question asking the group: “What do people think of this?”
Slåttavik told Nettavisen and Norway’s TV2 he wanted to “highlight the difference between legitimate criticism of immigration and blind racism”, and was “interested to see how people’s perceptions of an image are influenced by how others around them react. I ended up having a good laugh.”
I giggle every time some nitwit tries to make us believe that Islam is a "race." No, it's not "racism" to hate Islam. It's not even "racism" to hate Arabs. It's bigotry, sure. But why does every aggrieved group need the protection that the word "racism" gives? Words and meaning matter and using the word "racism" inappropriately only weakens its power to shame.
That said, these nutcases need to get a life. Mistaking bus seats for people? Sheesh.
The youths are taking over.
For the first time, millennials and Generation Xers cast more votes than Baby Boomers and members of the Silent Generation in the 2016 election, according to a new Pew study. Baby Boomers still cast the largest percentage of votes (35 percent), but Gen Xers took a solid second (26 percent), with millennials nipping at their heels (25 percent). Members of the Silent and Greatest generations still contributed 14 percent of voters.
Millennials and Generation Xers cast 69.6 million votes in the 2016 general election, a slight majority of the 137.5 million total votes cast, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of Census Bureau data. Meanwhile, Boomers and older voters represented fewer than half of all votes for the first time in decades. The shift has occurred as Millennials accounted for a growing share of the electorate and as those in the Silent and Greatest generations aged and died.
Millennials (those ages 18 to 35 in 2016) reported casting 34 million votes last November, a steep rise from the 18.4 million votes they cast in 2008. But, despite the larger size of the Millennial generation, the Millennial vote has yet to eclipse the Gen X vote, as 35.7 million Gen Xers (ages 36 to 51 in 2016) reported voting last year.
As usual, Pew noted that millennials are more likely to be Independents, but also skew liberal. There is good reason to doubt that means Democrats have a lock on the future, however, because generations tend to grow more conservative as they age (or so we conservative millennials tell ourselves...).
This data does mean that millennials can't just blame Boomers for Donald Trump, although older generations did favor the Republican over Hillary Clinton last November.
YOU WILL BE MADE TO CARE
The Washington Post has a story about a butcher in Berkeley who finally capitulated to a fringe mob of protesters:
The protests were intense: People dripping with fake blood, tightly bound in plastic wrap as if they were cuts of meat. Singing, shouting, lecturing customers. It’s what Direct Action Everywhere, an animal rights group, would do every time the Local Butcher Shop would host its butchering classes in its Berkeley, Calif., store.
But after four months, the protests have finally slowed down, and for an unlikely reason: After receiving a list of demands from the group, which also goes by DXE, the butcher shop capitulated. Although the Local Butcher Shop touts its farms’ humane practices on its website, owners agreed to hang a sign in their window that reads “Attention: Animals lives are their right. Killing them is violent and unjust, no matter how it’s done.”
The fringe left is never happy with any solution that doesn't involve complete victory, however. They are redefining, "Give them an inch and they'll take a mile."
This group is no different:
They’ve reached an unsteady detente. “We haven’t committed to never protesting there again,” Johnson said, though they are drastically scaling back the number of protests they hold at the shop. “We don’t want that sign to be there forever, because we want that business to eventually not be killing animals.”
But because DXE was so successful, it plans to use the tactic at other butcher shops, grocery stores and businesses that serve meat.
“Our ultimate ask is a nonviolent world where we’re not hurting animals for any purpose,” Johnson said.
My goal is that the United States not descend into mob rule.
For context, Acosta's grandstanding attacks on Trump are crossing lines that make even The Washington Post uncomfortable. "Dogwhistle" isn't the kind of word a responsible journalist tosses around. That's the language of unhinged Daily Kos diarists who want everyone to believe that virtually everything a non-leftist thinks is RACIST.
And now, a parting shot:
Even Time can't hide from the truth. Writing about the Charlie Gard tragedy, staff writer Alice Park says:
In the U.S., such conflicts are generally resolved in favor of the parents. When doctors don't feel medically and ethically able to continue futile treatment for a child, they offer parents the opportunity to find other hospitals that would. "In the U.S. we have created a culture where everybody should get whatever health care they want," says David Magnus, director of the Center for Biomedical Ethics at Stanford University. "As long as neither neglect nor abuse is involved, we give parents tremendous latitude in making decisions for their children."
That's not the case in the U.K., in large part because of the country's single-payer national health system. It's more routine for the medical community, and the courts, to make decisions about what's acceptable care, what's excessive care and even, as in Charlie's case, when care should stop.
I guess Trump, Putin's Stooge, was yesterday's hotness.
I am more convinced than ever that the Never Trumpers fixate on his personal style and not on his actual policies and that they are throwing out the proverbial baby with the bath water. To be mean (and I'm really not that mean) I would suggest they read a book by the British psychoanalyst D.W. Winnicott about "containing" contradictory ideas. It's helpful.
We have today two interesting cases in point. Trump just signed the sanctions bill despite misgivings. His misgivings are correct. If you trace the history back only a little bit, you realize that his administration's initial impulse to talk to the Russians was greatly influenced by an attempt to woo them away from Iran. The continual screeching by the press, Dems and Never Trumpers about non-existent electoral collusion destroyed that intelligent possibility and now we have Russia and Iran lumped together in sanctions. Great opportunity missed? Quite possibly. (Obviously there's a helluva lot more to say about this, but in a longer form)
Second thing: Trump's backing of Tom Cotton's smart, sensible immigration proposal today was brave because reactionaries of the right and left will oppose. He's doing the right thing, mostly. As has been said before (Some Like It Hot): "Nobody's poifect!"