UNEXPECTEDLY! City of Atlanta sees massive spike in crime over last month – we dig into what’s going on. “Atlanta police say murders are up 86% over 28 days last month compared to the same time last year. There is also a 22% rise in aggravated assaults and a 14% increase in burglaries.”

AW, SHUCKS. YOU KNOW US. FROM THE BLOGSPHERE AT LEAST. GIVE US A PING. WE’LL MEET YOU FOR COFFEE:  This Fourth Of July, I’m Moving Across The Country To A Place I’ve Never Been.

DOING THE JOB OUR SCHOOLS REFUSED TO DO: Trump gives America a history lesson at Mount Rushmore.

HISTORICALLY IT IS A FAR MORE REVOLUTIONARY NOTION:  True Revolutionaries Believe in Freedom, Not Power.

NO. NEXT?  Is the Declaration of Independence Sufficiently Appreciated?

CAN SOMEONE BREW OUR NEWS OUTLETS A POT OF THAT COFFEE?  British Media Outlets Wake Up, Begin Distancing Themselves From UK Black Lives Matter Organization.

IT’S ALL RIGHT. THE REST OF US DON’T EVEN QUESTION CNN. WE JUST MAKE FUN OF THEM:   July 4, 1776: The Declaration of Independence Annotated.

KEEP IT ALIVE:  July 4, 1776: The Declaration of Independence Annotated.

SOMETIMES I FEEL LIKE THE VOICE THAT CRIES IN THE DESERT. BUT I’M NOT ALONE:  Happy July 4th! Happy Independence Day.

BE NOT AFRAID:  Happy Fourth.

THE QUOTE IS PROBABLY APOCRYPHAL, BUT IT’S ONE OF THOSE THAT SINCE IT DIDN’T EXIST, IT HAD TO BE MADE UP:

“God has a special providence for fools, drunkards, and the United States of America.” Otto von Bismarck.
To my compatriots, on independence day (I am in Colorado where it’s still the 4th): let us hope it is forever thus. Our experiment was always improbable and by rights we should have perished a million times.  And yet we’re still here.
Be not afraid.  Go out and be Americans as hard as you can. Now and every day.

July 4, 2020

HE’LL STRIP BLACK VOTES FROM BIDEN IF THIS ACTUALLY HAPPENS, AND HE KNOWS THAT: Rapper Kanye West announces U.S. presidential bid on Twitter.

AT AMAZON, Bra Holsters for Women.

OPEN THREAD: The sound of gunfire, off in the distance, I’m getting used to it now.

21ST CENTURY HEADLINES: Solar sail spacecraft begins extended mission.

IS THIS A GREAT COUNTRY, OR WHAT? Nathan’s Famous hot dog-eating champs to defend titles in secret locale:“The July Fourth tradition, usually held outside Nathan’s original location on Coney Island’s Surf and Stillwell avenues, will this year take place at a private location in the neighborhood, without a live audience and with COVID-19 safety protocols in place…You can’t cancel Thanksgiving, you can’t cancel Christmas and you can’t cancel the Fourth of July, [competition host George Shea] said. And canceling the hot-dog contest would be like canceling the Fourth of July. That is why we had to make it work one way or another.’”

UPDATE: Joey Chestnut downs record 75 wieners in Nathan’s hot dog eating victory. “Chestnut, 36, whose powerful chops earned him the nickname ‘Jaws,’ turned candy apple red as he shoved dog after dog in his mouth, gorging at a blistering pace — at one point clearing 10 meat sticks and buns a minute as he shattered his 2018 record of 74.” Chestnut “has now claimed 13 of the past 14 annual contests.” A one-man sports dynasty!

(Updated and bumped.)

WALL STREET JOURNAL: The Gun Sales of June: When citizens conclude cops won’t protect them, they buy firearms.

Patricia and Mark McCloskey are the couple made instantly famous—or infamous—after a video showed them wielding firearms as they fended off protesters who had trespassed on private property outside their St. Louis home.

The Circuit Attorney for St. Louis, Kimberly Gardner, reacted by issuing a statement saying she planned an investigation, and that her office will not tolerate any effort to chill peaceful protest by the “threat of deadly force.” Never mind that Mr. McCloskey says he and his wife feared they’d be killed. As they told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, “the only thing that kept those mobsters, that crowd, away from us is that we were standing there with guns.”

If soaring gun sales are a guide, millions of Americans are with the McCloskeys. This week the FBI announced a record 3.9 million background checks for June, the highest monthly total since the FBI began keeping the statistic in 1998. Adjusting to reflect checks only for gun purchases, the National Shooting Sports Foundation says this works out to 2.2 million, a 136% increase over June 2019. NSSF spokesman Mark Oliva says about 40% of these checks are for first-time gun buyers.

This is a warning to the Defund the Police movement about unintended consequences. The more progressives push policies that mean cops won’t be around when people need them, the more they are inviting Americans to exercise their Second Amendment rights to protect themselves.

The police aren’t there to protect the public from criminals, they’re there to protect criminals from the public.

THUMB ON THE SCALE: Whistleblower describes Facebook interference in Canada’s 2019 election.

SPIRIT OF ’76: Forty years on, America’s bicentennial cohesion may be unrecoverable.

The Bicentennial was blessed with good timing, arriving on the heels of a long post-1960s hangover that culminated with two bleak closing acts, less than a year apart: the fall of an American president elected in large part to quell the previous decade’s disorder, and the fall of Saigon to the Communist North Vietnamese, bringing a tragic end to the war that had inspired much of the disorder. With that depressing coda, there was nowhere to go but up, and the Bicentennial became, as Lance Morrow wrote in Time, “a star-spangled ceremony of self-forgiveness.” After a long gaze inward, many concluded that the country and its republican traditions still looked pretty good.

That pride was reflected in the American Freedom Train, a 26-car locomotive loaded with historical exhibits and decorated in stars and stripes. It stopped in all 48 contiguous states from April 1, 1975, in Wilmington, Delaware, to December 31, 1976, in Miami. “It was by far the greatest event on rails since the end of the steam era,” declares a commemorative website, which estimates that tens of millions of Americans stood to watch it pass by and that more than 7 million bought tickets and attended.

I was one of those 7 million, or at least my parents were—they paid for the tickets. We stood in the Freedom Train’s fabled long lines on a hot summer day in suburban Illinois. Sometimes people waited for hours before they could get on board and see the exhibits, and even then, they were hustled along on a moving walkway that rushed them through in 15 minutes (later slowed to 22). It was all a bit overwhelming: “Zuni necklace, golden spike, first English Bible, first edition of Poe, Henry Aaron’s home run bat, Edward G. Robinson as Little Caesar, the familiar, sinister voice intoning ‘The Shadow knows,’ Thomas Hart Benton’s painting, Gerald R. Ford proclaiming, ‘Our Constitution works’—more than half a thousand features flash by before one has a chance to focus,” the New York Times observed. Still, the Freedom Train is remembered fondly, and, like the gifts sent to President Ford, it’s hard to imagine it happening again. The political battles alone—from what stops to make and what exhibits to include to whether to employ unionized workers or use renewable energy—would probably keep a twenty-first-century Freedom Train stranded in the station.

In-between Walter Cronkite droning on about the impending eco-disasters of a new ice age and overpopulation to viewers of the CBS Evening News, and episodes of M*A*S*H as a thinly-disguised Vietnam War commentary full of moral equivalence between the US, North Korea and Communist China, CBS could still muster up some of its biggest stars to host “Bicentennial Minutes” on the important events that led up to the nation’s founding. Today, the network would likely draft Stephen Colbert and Colin Kaepernick to opine on how the nation was born in Original Sin. Perhaps it was the lack of a 24-hour cable news cycle, or the increasingly left-leaning network remembering that it still needed to serve a wide swatch of viewers. In any case, even with a Republican president in the White House, the Bicentennial proved that as late as 1976, the Democratic Party-dominated overculture still offered room for all, decades before today’s “no escapism” mentality on the elite left.

NEW CIVILITY WATCH: ‘F*** the Fourth’ Trends on Twitter on the Fourth of July.

NY TIMES TECH JOURNALIST COMPLAINS ABOUT ONLINE ATTACK, OMITS THAT THE COMMENT WAS A PARAPHRASE OF HER OWN WORDS: 

There’s just one problem. Taylor Lorenz strategically cut off [angel investor Balaji Srinivasan’s] tweet so you can’t see what he was responding to. Here’s his original tweet, including the part Lorenz left out. Notice where he pulled this language from.

As you can see, Srinivasan was paraphrasing what Taylor Lorenz tweeted about a woman CEO named Steph Korey. Korey was making some critical remarks about “younger reporters” while also saying that “the overwhelming majority of journalists are dedicated and wonderful truth seekers.” And for that, Lorenz lashed out at her. So if Srinivasan’s tweet seemed harsh, he was really just turning Lorenz’ own words back on her.

* * * * * * * *

If you want the latest drama straight from the YouTube influencer world, you know where to get it. But if you want a straight recounting of why someone is saying mean things about Taylor Lorenz on Twitter, her Twitter feed may not be the bet place to get the full story.

In more ways than one. (Oh and read the whole thing.) Initially, I wasn’t able to get Srinivasan’s tweets to load, unless I opened up a browser in private viewing mode. Hopefully that was just a temporary Twitter glitch, but this earlier incident in which Twitter tilted the playing field in defense of MSM-DNC journalists does not instill confidence: Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey Defends Twitter’s #LearntoCode Purges.

SEE ALSO RUSSIA’S VERSION OF THE F-15, RUSSIA’S VERSION OF THE SPACE SHUTTLE, RUSSIA’S VERSION OF THE M1 ABRAMS . . . This Was Russia’s Version of the F-22 Raptor. And It Was a Big Failure.

WHY WOMEN ARE BETTER AT SEX GOSSIP.

CONTAGION: How Covid-19 contaminated French tourism.

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

About the Declaration there is a finality that is exceedingly restful. It is often asserted that the world has made a great deal of progress since 1776, that we have had new thoughts and new experiences which have given us a great advance over the people of that day, and that we may therefore very well discard their conclusions for something more modern. But that reasoning can not be applied to this great charter. If all men are created equal, that is final. If they are endowed with inalienable rights, that is final. If governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed, that is final. No advance, no progress can be made beyond these propositions. If anyone wishes to deny their truth or their soundness, the only direction in which he can proceed historically is not forward, but backward toward the time when there was no equality, no rights of the individual, no rule of the people. Those who wish to proceed in that direction can not lay claim to progress. They are reactionary. Their ideas are not more modern, but more ancient, than those of the Revolutionary fathers.

Calvin Coolidge, Address at the Celebration of the 150th Anniversary of the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia on July 5, 1926.

Related: Take this 4th of July to reject all the America-haters.

AS IS PROCEEDING AS IOWAHAWK FORETOLD: The New York Times has ditched Apple News because it’s not good for business.

In accordance with the prophecy: In New York, Scrappy Local Newspaper Struggles For Survival.

VOLUNTARY AMERICAN SARAH HOYT: Fly the Flag Proudly: The Left Is Not Winning This Fourth of July.

REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE: Earth has been recycling crust for most of its history.

PAST PERFORMANCE IS NO GUARANTEE OF FUTURE RESULTS (Florida Socialist Attorney Edition):

Flashback: Florida Man Will Wear Grim Reaper Outfit to Scare People Away from Beaches (and Raise Money for Dems).

AMERICA’S NEWSPAPER OF RECORD: Redskins Change Name To ‘Lizard People’ To Better Represent Population Of Washington, D.C.