July 30, 2016

YEAH, THE PROBLEM IS THE DEBUNKING SITES ARE OFTEN BUNK: Snopes Caught Lying About Lack Of American Flags At Democratic Convention.

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And shop the Amazon Emergency Prep Store. Plus, Emergency & Long-Term Storage Food Deals. When bad things happen, it’s good to have food.

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And with all the Zika news, I’m guessing that the mosquito control stuff will be a big item this year.

ZEROING IN ON THE IMPORTANT ISSUES: Can The New York Times Weddings Section Be Justified? I think, as a contrast to all the natter about inequality on the editorial pages, it serves a valuable function by reminding us what NYT readers really care about, and are really like. “The Times emphasizes four things about a person–college degrees, graduate degrees, career path, and parents’ profession–for these are the markers of upscale Americans today.”

Plus: “To argue that the page has diversified is tantamount to saying ‘Why, we feature lots of different kinds of people. There are transgender Harvard grads, Hispanic Harvard grads….'”

NEWS YOU CAN USE: “For right now, though, expect Hillary to get a bump in polling as Bernie Sanders voters reluctantly fall in line,” Ed Morrissey writes. “Whether that lasts for very long is debatable, though, given the headlines Hugh cites that stepped all over the last day of the convention in the Friday news cycle. By late August or early September, we should have a firm view of the post-convention political environment, so until then don’t take polling too much to heart.”

COOL: This guy used over 80,000 old photos to create a Google Street map of New York City in the 1800s.

New York City has a long and sprawling history, but looking at the city today, it’s hard to tell what it looked like in the past. Luckily, an enterprising coder has solved that problem by creating a Google Street View map for New York City for the late 1800s and early 1900s.

Developer Dan Vanderkam collaborated with the New York Public Library to plot all the old photos from the Photographic Views of New York City, 1870s-1970s collection on an interactive map.

The project, called OldNYC, lets you browse 19th-century New York as easily as you would click around on Google Maps. The collection contains over 80,000 original photographs.

The site is here.

VENEZUELA DECREES FORCED LABOR IN THE FIELDS FOR CITIZENS.

This is known as “bad luck.”

NO. NEXT QUESTION? Ilya Shapiro: Is Johnson-Weld a Libertarian Ticket?

Weld, who seems like a nice man and was apparently a decent governor, is the living expositor of the difference between a libertarian and someone who’s “socially liberal and fiscally conservative.”

Case in point: this week’s ReasonTV interview, where Weld praises Justice Stephen Breyer and Judge Merrick Garland, who are the jurists most deferential to the government on everything, whether environmental regulation or civil liberties. Later in the same interview, he similarly compliments Republican senators like Mark Kirk and Susan Collins, who are among the least libertarian of the GOP caucus in terms of the size and scope of government and its imposition on the private sector and civil society.

My point isn’t to criticize the Weld selection as a matter of political strategy. Indeed, he seems to have brought a certain respectability to a party that is rarely taken seriously. And if that moves the national political debate in a more libertarian direction, bully.

But then look at the most recent news made by the man at the top of the LP ticket. Former New Mexico governor Gary Johnson, in an interview with (my friend) Tim Carney of the Washington Examiner, calls religious freedom “a black hole” and endorses a federal role in preventing “discrimination” in all its guises. More specifically, he’s okay with fining a wedding photographer for not working a gay wedding – a case from New Mexico where Cato and every libertarian I know supported the photgrapher – and forcing the Little Sisters of the Poor to pay for contraceptives (where again Cato and libertarians supported religious liberty). He also bizarrely compare Mormonism to religiously motivated shootings.

In other words, Johnson doesn’t just come off as anti-religion, but completely misses the distinction between public (meaning government) and private action that is at the heart of (classical) liberal or libertarian legal theory. That’s a shame: it makes him no different than progressives in that regard – or social conservatives, who miss the distinction in the other direction, restricting individual rights in addition to government powers.

So, basically, we have three Democratic tickets running for President.

DAILY KOS: Election Justice USA Study Finds that Without Election Fraud Sanders Would Have Won by Landslide.

NO, BUT POLITICS IS: Wired: Cool Catchphrase, Hillary, But Science Isn’t About Belief.

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THIS ISN’T THE 21st CENTURY I WAS PROMISED: People Body-Shamed a Plus Size Model for Losing Weight.

EZRA LEVANT: Trump “treason”? Actually, Russia signed a “mutual legal assistance” treaty — with Hillary’s husband, Bill.

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HMM: Zika Virus in Florida: What We Know and What We Don’t Know. “Although the Zika virus has not yet been found in Florida mosquitoes, the state’s health department has decided to treat as mosquito-borne four cases in which Florida residents have tested positive. Some of the four victims — three men and one woman — worked in the same neighborhood, and it is thought they contracted it from mosquitoes there in early July.”

TEACH WOMEN NOT TO . . . OH, HELL, YOU KNOW: Authorities: Teacher Had Sex With Teen Boy, Gave Him A Gun. “Jamee Hiatt of Grass Lake was arrested by Jackson police in January after resigning from her job as third-grade teacher at Woodworth Elementary School in Leslie, Michigan. Prior to that, she taught at Leslie Middle School as recently as 2013, according to the district’s website. The 31-year-old was charged with criminal sexual conduct. Authorities say the charges stemmed from a sexual relationship with a boy that began in 2014, when he was 13 years old.”

THE COUNTRY’S IN THE VERY BEST OF HANDS: Justice Department Knew of IRS Scandal Two Years Before Congress but Did Nothing.

As Hillary said earlier this month, can you imagine electing a vindictive man who might send the IRS after his critics?

Who would even “joke” about it beforehand? Just imagine it!

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FUNDAMENTALLY TRANSFORMED: America’s First Major Socialist Party Debuts in Philadelphia.

As with previous experiments in socialism, this will end well.

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“SKIN OF COLOR?” Patients With Skin of Color Less Likely to Survive Skin Cancer.

A new study published online in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology states that while Caucasians have a higher risk of skin cancer compared to the general population — and have the highest incidence of melanoma — people with skin of color are less likely to survive the disease.

Researchers analyzed the data of approximately 97,000 patients who were diagnosed with melanoma over a 17-year period (between 1992 and 2009). And even though Caucasians had the largest number of cases of the disease, they had the best overall survival rate, followed by Hispanic patients and patients in the Asian-American/Native American/Pacific Islander group.

The patients with the worst rate of survival: African-Americans. They were also the group most likely to be diagnosed when the disease reached its later stages.

One of the investigators explains that time may play a part in this alarming news, since patients with skin of color often do not seek immediate medical attention after spotting a suspicious marking. And while it’s still unclear, he adds that there might be biological differences in melanoma among these people, which results in a more aggressive form of the disease.

Hmm. Despite the name, I don’t think that more melanin has anything to do with more-aggressive melanoma, but who knows? But obviously there’s less contrast between a dark mole and dark skin and a dark mole and light skin. Plus, I think a lot of black people may assume that they’re immune to skin cancer. But less likely to get it isn’t the same as immune.

WHY ARE DEMOCRAT-RUN INDUSTRIES SUCH CESSPITS OF RACISM? ‘It’s a racist myth that only a white man can save the world’: Constance Wu hits out at ‘whitewashed’ Great Wall film in which Matt Damon plays soldier in ancient China.

Why does an industry chockablock full of institutional racism deserve its own tax cuts anyhow?

NO WORSE FOR WEAR: SpaceX Successfully Test-Fires Recovered Rocket.

EMBRACE THE HEALING POWER OF ‘AND:’ Trevor Noah: Satirist? Or DNC Sellout?

DAVID SOLWAY: Domesticating Donald — What’s Not To Like?

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UH OH: Nate Silver Officially Declares it time for Democrats to Panic. All the attacks on Jill Stein yesterday should have been the tipoff.

TRUMP CHALLENGES HILLARY TO HOLD A PRESS CONFERENCE, SINCE HER LAST ONE OCCURRED 236 DAYS AGO: Even Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) tells PJM that Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton should have press conferences “all the time.”

IN THE MAIL: Polarized: Making Sense of a Divided America.

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TAXPROF ROUNDUP: The IRS Scandal, Day 1178.

SOCIALISM ALWAYS STARTS WITH THE SAME GLOWING PROMISES, BUT ALWAYS WINDS UP LIKE THIS: Venezuela calls for mandatory labor in farm sector.

NEWS YOU CAN USE: Let’s Roll: Why Standing Up to a Terrorist Is Your Best Self-Defense.

After the carnage like we’ve witnessed in American cities such as San Bernardino and Orlando, and more recently in Europe, the national conversation tends to shift temporarily back toward gun control legislation and how to best protect ourselves in the homeland from future terrorist attacks.

Sadly, however, what is always absent from these post-tragedy conversations is any mention of one change with enormous potential to save lives—one which would not require controversial legislation, millions of dollars, nor procurement of expensive advanced technologies. This change includes an overdue re-examination of how unarmed civilians should respond during these events, including how federal, state, and local authorities tell the public to respond.

Most every American has at some point either discussed or practiced an “active shooter response” based on guidance developed by the Department of Homeland Security.

Originally created, in part, as a buffer against potential lawsuits in the wake of a Nebraska mall shooting in late 2007, the guidance teaches us to run away if possible, hide if you are unable to escape, and fight back only as a last resort.

Today, “Run, Hide, Fight” is taught to everyone and mandated not only by the DHS, but also by the FBI, law enforcement…and even the military, including for its own members. Fear of lawsuits (by grieving family members of victims who fought back) still drives this and indirectly paralyzes everyone into watching helplessly as the active shooter and terrorist menace rampages. . . .

The mindset that we are helpless without weapons is not only self-defeating, but dangerous, and government policy that reinforces this perception is a flawed one.

A September 2013 FBI report found that of the 160 active shooter incidents in the U.S. between 2010 and 2013, 21 (13.1 percent) ended after unarmed citizens made the “selfless and deeply personal choices” to confront the active shooters. In each of these cases, the citizens “safely and successfully disrupted the shootings” and “likely saved the lives” of many others present.

Another compelling reason to consider change is because future attacks are inevitable, and relying on police rescue might actually lower your own chance of survival.

The 2013 FBI report found that of those 160 active shooter incidents—incidents that generated 1,043 total casualties—60 percent ended before police arrived. These disturbing numbers warrant attention, especially when examined alongside CIA Director John Brennan’s recent remarks: “ISIL has a large cadre of Western fighters who could potentially serve as operatives for attacks in the West … our efforts have not reduced the group’s terrorism capability and global reach … [and] we judge that it will intensify its global terror campaign.”

Yep. The real first responders are the people who are already there. Related thoughts here.

WELL, I CERTAINLY CAN’T FAULT HER: Malia Obama skipped the DNC for Lollapalooza.

AN EXCITING HISTORY of drywall. “Like white bread in the 1950s, drywall became the de facto consumer substance with the promise of a better, cleaner, easier life. White bread sales are now declining, but drywall is doing better than ever. Maybe that’s because drywall really is the best way to create affordable housing for millions.”

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MY GOD, SHE’S RUNNING AS HILLARY CLINTON, writes Jonah Goldberg in his latest G-File:

Not every speech over the first three nights was a homerun — or even a success. But cumulatively they succeeded in building a narrative arc that begged for a rhetorically pyrotechnic crescendo. The angry denunciation of Trump by a Muslim father of a fallen American soldier, the patriotic pride of a Muslim Medal of Honor winner, the stentorian harangue from Marine General John Allen, the chants of “USA! USA!”: It all built anticipation for the big reveal at the end of the night. The Joycean run-on-sentence was primed like a coil to burst the dam of expectation with an exclamation point so enormous only horribly mixed metaphors can capture it.

Like attendees of a tribal war feast, the crowd waited for the main course. What glorious dish of red meat lay under the giant brass dome? A whole roast bull stuffed with an ostrich stuffed with a boar, perhaps?

Finally, the panel opened up and out came the meal: A gluten-free bran muffin and a warm kale smoothie.

Read the whole thing.

MATT DRUDGE FINDS THE BURIED LEDE: Hillary refused to cooperate with the FBI investigation into her campaign being hacked:

The FBI warned the Clinton campaign that it was a target of a cyberattack last March, just weeks before the Democratic National Committee discovered it had been penetrated by hackers it now believes were working for Russian intelligence, two sources who have been briefed on the matter told Yahoo News.

In a meeting with senior officials at the campaign’s Brooklyn headquarters, FBI agents laid out concerns that cyberhackers had used so-called spear-phishing emails as part of an attempt to penetrate the campaign’s computers, the sources said. One of the sources said agents conducting a national security investigation asked the Clinton campaign to turn over internal computer logs as well as the personal email addresses of senior campaign officials. But the campaign, through its lawyers, declined to provide the data, deciding that the FBI’s request for sensitive personal and campaign information data was too broad and intrusive, the source said.

Hmmm — I wonder why?

HILLARYCRUISE

THE NEW POLITICAL DIVIDE: Farewell, left versus right. The contest that matters now is open against closed.

CORY BOOKER: Trump’s support among the gay community is ‘terrifying.’

New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker is alarmed by polls that suggest GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump is seeing a rise in support from the gay community.

“That’s terrifying,” Booker told the Washington Examiner after the Democratic National Convention. “Donald Trump probably picked one of the most anti-gay vice presidential candidates we’ve had in a long time.”

Booker said Gov. Mike Pence, R-Ind., has been at the forefront of leading efforts he said unfairly discriminate against members of the LGBT community. The New Jersey senator went on to argue why he believes the Democratic Party is best for the gay community.

“Clearly we are the party of civil rights, worker’s rights, women’s rights and definitely gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender rights,” Booker said.

Apparently, it’s not so clear.

FILE IT AWAY: The Ten Stages of Trump Excuse-ism: If Trump loses in November–which isn’t a sure thing, of course–I think it’s pretty clear that we’ll see the following responses, in the following order, from his supporters.”

THE HILL: Dem Anxiety Hangs Over Clinton:

Democrats are worried about Hillary Clinton’s inability to separate herself from Donald Trump in the polls, even after what they believe was a largely successful convention that represented a real step toward party unity.

Clinton is hoping for a big post-convention boost, but the reality right now is that she in behind Trump in the polls, and has been in a relatively tight race for weeks.

While the Electoral College may give her an advantage, party leaders and strategists say they remain concerned that Clinton is a tough sell when a majority of Americans think the country is on the wrong track and want to shake up Washington.

“The most important thing is there is a bias for change and there’s an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll where people express that bias even when they don’t know what the change is going to be,” said Geoff Garin, a pollster who worked for Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign and now advises Priorities USA, a pro-Clinton super PAC.

That July survey showed a majority of voters, 56 percent, prefer someone who will bring major changes to government even if they don’t know what those changes will be. Only 46 percent wanted a candidate who would bring a steady approach to government.

It helps explain Trump’s success, and the strong challenge to Clinton in the Democratic primary from Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Away from the hoopla of the Wells Fargo, Democratic officials and strategists say it’s a major concern.

“I’m nervous. The country is in a bad mood. It’s such an unpredictable year,” said a Democratic National Committee official who requested anonymity to speak frankly about Clinton’s prospects.

Other concerns include the possibility of an enthusiasm gap between Republicans and Democrats — Trump got more votes in the GOP primary than any candidate in history while Hillary received fewer votes than she did in 2008 when she lost — and a possible “October surprise.”

One labor official fretted that more hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee may surface later in the campaign and hurt Hillary.

I think there’ll be something. But her biggest weakness is that she’s most popular when she’s not in the news, and it’s hard to run a campaign that way.

WIKILEAKS CRASHES THE PARTY: “Any sense of decency is long past. Democrats liked secret-stealing Russians so much better when they called themselves Communists.”

Heh.™

IMPOSSIBLE! HER SERVER WAS WIPED CLEAN – LIKE WITH A CLOTH OR SOMETHING: Clinton campaign hacked.

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TO BE FAIR, HER LEGISLATIVE CAREER WAS NEVER ANYTHING BUT A SPRINGBOARD: Hillary’s Single Legislative Success: Renaming a Building in NYC.

HEADLINES FROM 1933: How Democrats became the party of ‘safe socialism.’

Of course, some things never change: Other than repealing prohibition, FDR’s campaign promises in 1932 were vastly different than what he delivered.

WELL, WE CERTAINLY CAN’T ENCOURAGE PEOPLE TO WORK HARD AND SAVE: The Post-Modern Emphasis on “Dumb Luck.” “Attributing one’s success in life to dumb luck makes it politically expedient for politicians to raise taxes on those who are successful and pander to the ‘less fortunate’ by telling them nothing is their fault as they are victims of circumstances beyond one’s control. The unsuccessful (who are the majority) feel vindicated and the politicians have goodies to pretend to distribute–the goodies of those with dumb luck.”

July 29, 2016

THOMAS LIFSON: Something very weird about Hillary’s face at the convention. “There has to be a lot of resentment. The stories of screaming matches, thrown lamps, and the rest are credible to me because Hillary has endured a level of private humiliation at her husband’s hands, in ways overt as in all the extracurricular sex, but also in ways completely unintended, the product of her negative charisma. The result of all this is a burning desire to surpass Bill, to occupy the Oval Office, and get revenge for his casual ease at being liked. And the facial expression? I think it is a window into the intensity of Hillary’s desire, buried deep within her soul, and rarely allowed out. Professor Althouse chose to compare Hillary’s picture to The Scream, the famous painting by Munch. I think that comparison makes my point.”

Related: America Can’t Stand Hillary: “I have thought for a while that pretty much everyone’s mind is made up about Hillary, after all these years. But Gallup finds a remarkable fall from grace, with Hillary having been at 59% favorable as recently as last year. Apparently the FBI’s finding her to have been ‘extremely careless’ in handling classified information, together with ongoing focus on her Libya/Benghazi failings, have seriously hurt her in the eyes of many Americans. That, plus the fact that she is always most popular when out of sight. When people see Hillary, as during the current campaign, they tend not to like her.”

THE NEWPORT JAZZ FESTIVAL: Started today, runs through Sunday. Here’s Mahalia Jackson at the festival in 1958. And Anita O’Day — also 1958. Both clips are from the classic documentary Jazz On A Summer’s Day.

HOW DO WORD PROCESSORS change authors’ writing style? When I read back over my old stuff, it doesn’t seem like it’s changed much at all, but then I’ve been using some sort of word processor for pretty much my entire adult life.

THIS ISN’T THE 21st CENTURY I WAS PROMISED: ‘Freedom Fairy’ Protests Trump at RNC (Video).

ADDRESSING THE IMPORTANT QUESTIONS: What High Heels Say About The Gap Between The Rich And The Poor. Pretty much exactly what you’d expect, actually.

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THE SCALE ISN’T A LIE, IF IT ACCURATELY TELLS YOUR WEIGHT. But your body composition and general fitness matters just about as much. Fitness blogger proves that weight is a meaningless number.

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And, honestly, she looks pretty good in all of them.

THE DEMISE OF THE TRADITIONAL COLLEGE LECTURE is bad for students. Well, but student learning isn’t the priority.

LEFTIST FILMMAKER UPLOADS VIDEO SHOWING HIS SHOCK AT JUST HOW EMPTY THE DNC IS.

A POLITICAL PARTY CAN’T BE ALL THINGS TO ALL PEOPLE:

Shot: The shameful moment Black Lives Matter chants interrupt silence for fallen police officers led by their relatives at the DNC.

Chaser: Jack Dunphy on “The Mothers of the Movement.”

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Mothers of the Movement (L-R) Maria Hamilton, mother of Dontre Hamilton; Annette Nance-Holt, mother of Blair Holt; Gwen Carr, mother of Eric Garner; Geneva Reed-Veal, mother of Sandra Bland; Lucia McBath, mother of Jordan Davis; Sybrina Fulton, mother of Trayvon Martin; and Cleopatra Pendleton-Cowley, mother of Hadiya Pendleton; Lezley McSpadden, Mother of Mike Brown; and Wanda Johnson, mother of Oscar Grant stand on stage prior to delivering remarks on the second day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia on July 26. (Photo by Riccardo Savi, Sipa via AP Images.)

GOOD: ASU biochemist invents a more comfortable condom. The ultimate goal, of course, is to make a condom that feels better than nothing. And note how federal regulation is holding things up.

TROUBLE IN PARADISE: Kaine Says He Still Disagrees with Hillary on Hyde Amendment.

EVEN HER SUPPORTERS KNOW HILLARY CLINTON IS THE TERMINATOR.

I dunno — his firmware seems a lot more reliable.

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LET’S FACE IT — TODAY WOULD BE THE PERFECT MOMENT FOR SMOD 2016’s ACCEPTANCE SPEECH: Will the world end tonight? Conspiracy theorists predict doomsday caused by ‘second coming of Jesus Christ’ and a magnetic polar flip.

HOW HILLARY BLEW HER BIG MOMENT: “We’ve seen candidates transcend their past ineloquence in these circumstances before, to great effect,” John Podhoretz writes in the New York Post, listing modern presidential candidates on both sides of the aisle rise to the occasion of their nomination speech. “Not Hillary. Which is why her supporters and fans should be disappointed in her rather than mad at me.”

Read the whole thing.

DAVID MASTIO: The Election Is Over: Trump Won. “No one is listening anymore. When mild-mannered technocrat Mitt Romney was running for president, Clinton’s obscure Obama-administration colleague Joe Biden told a black audience that Republicans ‘are going to put ya’ll back in chains.’ If you listen to Democrats, every Republican who has run for anything in my lifetime has Klan robes in their closet and secret Confederate memorabilia collection.” (Bumped).

UPDATE:

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When everyone is Hitler, no one is Hitler.

Related thoughts here.

MOST GENEROUS CITIES ARE ALSO MOST CHURCH-GOING: The Daily Caller News Foundation’s Thomas Phippen looks at a new Barna Group data analysis that found some huge surprises among the nation’s 50 most generous cities. Take El Paso, for example, where 92 percent of the adults in that Texas border metropolis donate to charity regularly, most through local churches.

If you are guessing there is a connection between church attendance and generosity, you got it. Just imagine how America’s social welfare scene would change if 92 percent of the adults living in the 50 largest cities were as generous as those in El Paso.

UNDER THE RADAR: Obama Issues Executive Order That May Drive Gunsmiths Out of Business.

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HILLARY: I’M NOT HERE TO TAKE AWAY YOUR GUNS.

Yeah, we’ve heard that line at least once before:

MY GOD MAN, PICK YOUR BATTLES A BIT MORE CAREFULLY: “A minor matter it may be, and with no legal repercussions, I hope, but let me mention that I hate Piet Mondrian:”

I only realized this yesterday. Prior to that I rather liked him, or more precisely, dutifully applauded his uncompromising abstractions, his pursuit of “the absolute” in growing disregard of all the traditional “content” of painting, such as representation, draughtsmanship, colouring and shading; the “pure plasticity” he advertised. The actual enjoyment was tepid at best.

Funny, I really like Mondrian. As with Mies van der Rohe, he’s a fascinating case study to watch his transition from a trained traditional artist to radical modernist. And as with postwar pop culture, modernism in general was only interesting when it had a traditional culture to push against. Once that was vanquished, both high and low art lost a great deal of vitality.

(Via Maggie’s Farm.)

NEWS YOU CAN USE: How to Run a Successful Mobile Crowdsourcing Project.

SECURING THE AIRSPACE along the Mexican border.

LIGHT THERAPY: Study shows amber-tinted glasses can reduce manic symptoms in just 3 days.

THE MAN WHO MADE BLUE ÖYSTER CULT AND THE CLASH: RIP Producer Sandy Pearlman.

JUST CALL HER #HEDGEFUNDHILLARY.

WHO EMPOWERED PUTIN?: This is a bump, but the last half of the essay documents the culprits– with dates and actions.

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THIS DOESN’T SEEM ESPECIALLY SURPRISING: Being Unfit May Be Almost as Bad for You as Smoking. “Poor fitness turned out to be unhealthier even than high blood pressure or poor cholesterol profiles, the researchers found. Highly fit men with elevated blood pressure or relatively unhealthy cholesterol profiles tended to live longer than out-of-shape men with good blood pressure and cholesterol levels.”

TALES OF THE UNEXPECTED: U.S. Economy Grew Less-Than-Forecast 1.2% in Second Quarter.

So much for “Morning in America.” As Jim Hofted noted in April, Obama will be the only president never to have seen a year of three percent or more economic growth during his administration.*

Of course some radical environmentalists, such as John Kerry and Claire McCaskill consider that to be good news.

* No wonder Paul Krugman longs for “the miracle of the 1940s,” his euphemism for that minor bit of unpleasantness the rest of us call World War II.

I HOPE WE PUT AN EXPLOITABLE FLAW IN THE PLANS THEY STOLE: The Chinese CH-4B looks and acts a lot like the American Reaper drone.​

HEADLINES FROM 1965: CARLIN, PRYOR, AND BRUCE MOURN FREE SPEECH:

In an interview with free speech advocacy group FIRE, George Carlin’s daughter Kelly Carlin, Richard Pryor’s daughter Rain, and Lenny Bruce’s daughter Kitty confirm their dads would have a few choice words on today’s “thought police.”

Kitty Bruce brings up campus censorship: She’s found no comic willing to open the Lenny Bruce archives at Brandeis. Those she’s asked tell her, “Kitty, they want our comedy to be beige.” Lenny Bruce, like him or not, was anything but beige, and his bestselling album recorded live at UC Berkeley.

And according to Ms. Pryor, political correctness holds us back from a collective healing: “We’re afraid to laugh at what is painful. Do you know what I mean? We’re afraid to go to that line and cross it and then, if we do cross it, we’re not crossing it for the sake of enlightenment, right?”

“Enlightenment” may be a bit of a stretch. The legacy of the three funny men led to the erasure of the lines they, sometimes brilliantly, crossed. They made their livings and won their fame offending and amusing the cultural sensitivities they helped to push our culture past. And yet new lines, too many to keep in order, have replaced these. Kelly Carlin cites identity politics’ requirement everyone honor everyone else’s self-image, leaving little room for laughs.

As with John Cleese in 2011 having second thoughts about the current state of England after Monty Python spent years on the (state-owned) BBC going to war against its former postwar version, all of the (admittedly brilliant) comedic fathers referenced above worked very hard in the 1960s and ‘70s to coarsen American culture. Curiously, as their daughters belatedly discovered, their efforts to advance the left didn’t result in a liberated free-speech nirvana. If only someone could have predicted that.

UPDATE:

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JACK DUNPHY ON ‘THE MOTHERS OF THE MOVEMENT:’

Last Friday, a funeral was held in Baton Rouge for a police officer murdered there last week. Saturday brought two more police funerals, one in Kansas City, and another in Baton Rouge. The funeral for the third Baton Rouge officer killed last week was held on Monday.

Also on Monday, to far greater attention than any of these funerals received, the Democratic National Convention began in Philadelphia. Among the speakers to address the convention on Tuesday night was a group of women collectively known as the Mothers of the Movement, the members of which are connected by way of having lost children under violent or otherwise controversial circumstances. The group includes the mothers of Eric Garner, Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Sandra Bland, Dontré Hamilton, Jordan Davis, and Hadiya Pendleton.

Read the whole thing.

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Mothers of the Movement (L-R) Maria Hamilton, mother of Dontre Hamilton; Annette Nance-Holt, mother of Blair Holt; Gwen Carr, mother of Eric Garner; Geneva Reed-Veal, mother of Sandra Bland; Lucia McBath, mother of Jordan Davis; Sybrina Fulton, mother of Trayvon Martin; and Cleopatra Pendleton-Cowley, mother of Hadiya Pendleton; Lezley McSpadden, Mother of Mike Brown; and Wanda Johnson, mother of Oscar Grant stand on stage prior to delivering remarks on the second day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia on July 26. (Photo by Riccardo Savi, Sipa via AP Images.)

 

TALKING POINTS MEMO: How These Former Obama Voters Came To See Trump As Their Champion. Short version: They voted for Obama but now they’re racist.

MARK RIPPETOE: Once Again, Terrible Exercise Science Gets Praised by Mainstream Media.

WHY ARE ALL THESE DEMOCRAT-ALIGNED COMPANIES hiding so much money overseas to avoid taxes?

IN THE MAIL: From Charles J. Sykes, Fail U.: The False Promise of Higher Education.

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And, also today only: Save on Select AKG Over the Ear and JBL In-Ear Headphones.

TAXPROF ROUNDUP: The IRS Scandal, Day 1177.

NOBEL PEACE PRIZE UPDATE: The World is at War and the Peace Has Been Lost.

From the quiet country churches of Normandy through the civil wars of Africa, the killing fields of Syria, Putin’s war against the modern European order and China’s lawless surge into the waters beyond its shores, the dark storm clouds gather. Pope Francis has noticed. . . .

Francis is not always the world’s clearest thinker on matters of politics and policy, but he hit the nail right on the head here: we have lost the peace. It is an interesting counterpoint to the Democratic establishment’s celebration of itself and its wisdom last night. And the Pope’s point suggests what is likely to be the starting point of historians’ analysis of Barack Obama’s foreign policy legacy: not how he succeeded, but how and why was the peace lost on his watch?

Hillary Clinton is pursuing a job that will be much harder than the job her husband faced, and she will need to do something that many of her most ardent supporters hope she won’t have to do: when the world is at war because it has lost the peace, you have to think outside the box and go well beyond the world of stale liberal truisms of the Boomer Progressive Synthesis.

Related: Turkey and the Ruins of U.S. Foreign Policy.

ANDREW McCARTHY ON THE BROUHAHA OVER TRUMP’S ‘TREASON:’ “Hillary has committed serious felony violations of federal law. So naturally, the left is acting as if Trump committed ‘treason:’”

Come in from the strange echo of the Cold War and read the whole thing.

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CAMBODIA BACKED CHINA: And may pay a political price for its sell-out. I posted on this a few days ago.

Cambodia ignored its neighbors and used its support for China to water down a traditional statement in regards to the South China Sea dispute. The communique failed to mention China’s July 12 defeat in The Hague where an international tribunal ruled “there was no legal basis for China to claim historic rights to resources within the sea falling within the nine-dash line.” China refused to recognize the jurisdiction of the court – a move backed by Cambodia – or the legal action initiated by the Philippines.

Thanks to Cambodia, China won a tactical political victory at the ASEAN meeting. Beijing didn’t want the arbitration decision mentioned– nope, can’t state that fact. China’s bought Cambodia’s vote. As the article notes, over the last two decades China has given Cambodia $15 billion in aid and soft loans.

ANOTHER POLICE OFFICER SLAIN: In San Diego. One officer killed, one wounded. Blue Lives Matter.

SHOCKER: Networks give Democrats 40% more airtime than GOP.

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IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Dems go full Joe McCarthy.

TWO WEEKS SINCE TURKEY’S COUP: No, it isn’t ancient history. Erdogan is consolidating personal power. Today the Turkish newspaper Hurriyet says the government is claiming Gulen planned to return to Turkey like Khomeini returned to Iran.

JAMES O’KEEFE GOES #IMWITHHER UNDERCOVER AND FINDS NO HILLARY LOVE OUTSIDE #DNCINPHL (Video): Watch as an enraged Bernie supporter (is there any other kind) tackles a Hillary t-shirt-wearing O’Keefe to the ground.

HILLARY AT RISK OF BEING UPSTAGED:

Few would ever want to follow that Dream Team lineup of gifted political orators at the Democratic National Convention.

Then again, Hillary Clinton doesn’t really have a choice.

She wants to be president, and the acceptance speech is a rite of passage for anyone seeking the White House.

When the former secretary of State and first lady steps on stage here at the Wells Fargo Arena Thursday night, she will become the first woman in American history to accept the presidential nomination of a major political party.

But Clinton also finds herself in the difficult spot of going last, after some tremendous speeches by her top surrogates — all of whom have demonstrated an uncanny ability to inspire and connect with huge audiences like the one that will fill the Wells Fargo Arena.

When I was in the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minnesota at the start of September of 2008 as part of the team that kicked off PJTV, I’ll never forget how Sarah Palin had the crowd absolutely enraptured by the end of her speech. (She was so good that night, no wonder the DNC-MSM decided they needed to utterly crush her.) Then the last night was McCain, who seemed oddly flat, particularly by comparison. I remember walking out of the arena thinking that it’s never a good sign when the opening act blows away the headliner, and this does not bode well for November. I wonder if Hillary voters in Philadelphia had a similar reaction last night.

Related: Bernie Sanders’ delegates wore glow-in-the-dark t-shirts reading “enough is enough” during Hillary’s speech, Joel Pollack tweets with an accompanying photo.

NEWS YOU CAN USE: The University of Tennessee College of Law is Hiring Business Law Faculty!

ANNALS OF PREJUDICE: Nancy Pelosi thinks she has white men figured out.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi thinks she knows why white men prefer GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump over Hillary Clinton. Surprisingly, she didn’t blame sexism, but her attempts to speak for white men could be viewed as, well, sexist.

“So many times, white — non-college-educated — white males have voted Republican,” Pelosi told PBS. “They voted against their own economic interests because of guns, because of gays, and because of God, the three G’s — God being the woman’s right to choose.”

First, she starts off by implying these men are stupid because they didn’t go to college. That right there might be a reason many working-class men don’t support the Democratic Party. But I’m not a white man, so I can only speculate as to their reasoning.

Second, she insists these men care more about social issues than economic issues. Many people vote Republican because they recognize that free stuff from the government isn’t free, and that raising taxes on the rich can’t pay for it all. So they are voting in their own economic interests. There’s also a point in here about how people in low-income areas keep voting to keep the Democratic Party in power even though their lives don’t improve. It’s also possible that many white men don’t like Clinton because of her mishandling of classified information and promises to continue President Obama’s legacy, which has seen record numbers of people leave the workforce.

Let’s flip the script and think of how it would look if a white male politician gave an interview and suggested women prefer Hillary because of “abortion, contraceptives and the belief that women are paid less than men for equal work.” There would be outrage from certain feminist circles. Shouts of “no uterus, no opinion!” would echo.

Perhaps men should start responding with “no penis, no opinion!” when women try to speak for them.

Related: Hillary Ad Text: ‘Girls Rule, Boys Drool.’

No, sadly, that’s not a joke or parody. “The Clinton campaign did not respond to an inquiry about the use in the ad of the phrase ‘boys drool’ or how little boys might be affected by this.”

How will little boys fare, when we have a President who hates them?