May 8, 2021

MORE EXPERT ADVICE UNDERCUT: Largest study to date confirms non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications do not result in worse COVID-19 outcomes.

SHADY GOINGS-ON AT NORTHWESTERN LAW AND NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY. I’ve confirmed the substance of this email with a Northwestern faculty member whom I know somewhat.

Northwestern law school is facing an unprecedented and outrageous situation. The university is trying to impose a critical-studies woke Dean on the law school; the faculty is fighting back. To overcome faculty resistance, the university set up a Dean search committee with exceptional procedures that violate the ABA rules and the law school’s own long-standing rules. Throughout the Dean search process, the faculty did not receive any information about the candidates, not even the names of finalists. The faculty complained to the Provost, citing the violation of ABA rule 203, but the Provost essentially dared the faculty to make this violation public and cause disaccreditation of their own law school. In response, the faculty unanimously passed a new voting rule, requiring secret ballots for all appointments-related votes, starting September 1.

On Friday, May 7, the interim Dean Jim “I am a racist” Speta sent an email (below). For the first time ever, the faculty learned the identity of the new Dean, Hari Osofsky of Penn State, the school far below Northwestern in rankings. The Dean needs tenure, so, the faculty is instructed to vote tenure to Osofsky the next working day, Monday.

This is an astonishing violation of faculty appointments rules long in effect at Northwestern. Osofsky never met with the faculty. There was no job talk, a strict requirement for all tenured appointments. There was no job talk paper. There were no office interviews. There was no committee of experts from the candidate’s field to study her work in detail and report, also a long-standing requirement that has never been violated in recent history. There were no outside recommendation letters, also mandatory. No reports of citations and other quantitative impact measures, another standard practice. There was no committee report issued in advance of the meeting, also mandatory.

This Saturday Night Special scheme — the surprise meeting, with a surprise candidate, announced on Friday, to be held on Monday morning — is clearly meant to thwart the faculty’s ability to gather information and coordinate. There is no legitimate purpose for this. The secret-ballot voting rule, passed unanimously in the face of the Dean search process, does not become operational until September 1. The faculty has been threatened with severe repercussions if they vote against Osofsky.

We have no choice but to make these egregious violations of ABA rules, law school’s own procedural rules, and basic decency and fairness known to the world. Anonymously.

[Email follows]

Sent: Friday, May 7, 2021 9:55 AM

To: [email protected]

Subject: Meeting Monday, at 10:00 a.m.: Candidacy of Professor Hari Osofsky

Dear colleagues:

I am calling a tenure-line faculty meeting for next Monday, May 10, at 10:00 a.m., for the purpose of discussing and voting on a recommendation that the Provost’s selection for our new dean, Professor Hari Osofsky, be named to the tenured faculty of the Law School. Professor Osofsky is currently the Dean of both the Law School and the School of International Affairs at Penn State. She was previously on the faculty at Minnesota Law, among other schools. She is an accomplished scholar in several fields, including international and environmental law, and, of course, an experienced administrator.

I attach to this email Professor Osofsky’s CV, and here is her webpage. Members of the search committee will also speak to her background and qualifications at the meeting.

This unusually expedited procedure is necessary, given the continuing nonpublic nature of the search. In that regard, this meeting is being held before any public announcement and before any broader internal announcement. I therefore request (as does the Provost) that you refrain from sharing this information either internally or externally and keep this confidential until the matter is concluded and such public announcements can be made.

Please let me know if you have any questions. A Zoom link will be forthcoming shortly.

Thanks,

Jim

James B. Speta

Interim Dean

This is, for those who don’t know about such things, quite thoroughly unusual. Normally a person isn’t hired as Dean until the faculty has met that person, and voted — as a binding or non-binding recommendation to the central administration — on acceptability as Dean. The tenure vote is always up to the faculty, and it is a grave breach to threaten the faculty about it.

I have no opinion on whether Hari Osofsky would make a good Dean because I know nothing about her, which places me in the same position as the faculty expected to vote on her tenure — by non-secret ballot — on Monday. Speaking personally, were I a candidate at an institution that was behaving as described above, I would withdraw my name in the face of such tactics, as I would expect them to taint my deanship. Perhaps there is some innocent explanation for this behavior, though I can’t think of one.

WHEN INSTITUTIONS FAIL: All Three Finalists to Be President of The Evergreen State College Withdraw From Process.

A year-long process to find the next president of The Evergreen State College came to a shocking conclusion Wednesday when the college’s Board of Trustees emerged from a three-hour meeting and announced that the three finalists for the job had withdrawn their names from consideration.

Board of Trustees Chairwoman Karen Fraser said all three finalists — Michael Dumont, Catherine Kodat and Lee Lambert — withdrew following recent interviews with faculty, students, staff and alumni. . . .

Trustee Ed Zuckerman defended the process the college undertook to find a president, but also said, “We have some learning to do as a community as to why they withdrew.”

“The process is not at issue from my standpoint,” he said.

Trustee David Nicandri said the common conceit about the college is that its biggest challenge is in recruitment and retention, but he also cited a “deeper set of problems” facing the college, which he did not identify.

The place has been a toxic stew of wokeness and entitlement for years. That’s the deeper set of problems.

LOOKING FOR SOMETHING ELSE IN THE ARCHIVES, I ran across this article from when Salon was actually readable.

GOOD NEWS FOR DRUG COMPANIES: One in 5 people in U.S. uses blood pressure-raising medications. Of course, it’s partly a matter of definitions: “In 2017, the ACC and American Heart Association changed their definition of high blood pressure, lowering it from the old threshold of 140/90 mm Hg.”

Related: With Blood Pressure, Lower Is Not Always Better.

The observational study, published online in JAMA Internal Medicine, involved 4,480 people. In the 22 years covered by the study, there were 1,622 heart attacks and other serious cardiac problems. Cardiac events were more common in people whose blood pressure exceeded 140, and particularly among those with readings over 160.

But there was no difference in the risk for heart failure, stroke or heart attack between those in the normal range (120 to 140) and those with a level below 120. Researchers controlled for smoking, use of blood pressure drugs, and other variables.

Related: Why the New Blood Pressure Guidelines Could Lead to Harm.

The problem was not the guideline itself but some of the news coverage it prompted, with pronouncements that millions more Americans would need to lower blood pressure or that nearly half of Americans now had high blood pressure. A lot of the coverage made it sound as if something drastic had happened overnight.

Nothing had. We just changed the definition of hypertension. . . .

The results were significant, with fewer patients in the intensive therapy group having an acute cardiovascular event or death. The evidence was so compelling that the trial was stopped early, so the results could be announced sooner rather than later. This decision itself brought a fair amount of media attention to its findings. The fact that those in the intensive therapy group also had more adverse events, like hypotension, syncope and acute kidney injury, got less attention.

Plus:

The Sprint study essentially showed that people truly at high risk should have their blood pressure managed more aggressively than we thought. But that has not been the message of news on the new guidelines. That has focused far more often on the many newly reclassified people with mild blood pressure, who were not the focus of the Sprint intervention.

In fact, almost none of the newly labeled hypertensive people (those with systolic blood pressure between 130 and 140) should be placed on medications. These people should be advised to eat right, exercise, drink responsibly, and not smoke.

That’s exactly what physicians would have been advising people before these changes.

More at the link.

NEWS YOU CAN USE: A little alcohol may help the heart by lowering stress, study says. “Compared to those with low alcohol intake, moderate drinkers had less stress-related brain activity and a 20% lower risk of a major heart event.”

THE IRANIAN GOVERNMENT PAINTS AMERICAN AND ISRAELI FLAGS ON THE GROUND SO PEOPLE CAN WALK ALL OVER THEM. THE IRANIAN PEOPLE REFUSE TO COMPLY.

Why would the Iranian government want Iranian people walking over the American flag, when the Iranian government is currently walking all over Biden? Biden administration ‘dead set’ on re-entering Iran deal, despite high price. “Richard Goldberg, a senior adviser at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, as well as an expert on Iran negotiations and sanctions, told JNS that he believes the reports coming out of Iran reflect leaks that the Islamic regime is already declaring victory at the negotiating table with the United States giving into 90 percent to 95 percent of the sanctions relief the Iranians had been seeking.”

NEWS YOU CAN USE: How to Stick It to Facebook in One Easy Step.

IN BIDEN’S CARTER-ERA RERUN, GAS LINES WERE ALREADY INEVITABLE, THIS JUST SPEEDS THINGS UP: A cyberattack has forced the shutdown of a major gas pipeline in the U.S. that supplies 45% of all fuel consumed on the East Coast.

AMERICA’S NEWSPAPER OF RECORD: In New Cut Of Empire Strikes Back, Vader Will Now Say ‘I Am Your Non-Birthing Person!’

YES, AND…? DeSantis to unemployed: Start looking for a job.

GETTING A JUMP ON TOMORROW’S HEADLINES: The Democratic Party Wishes You a Happy ‘Birthing People’ Day.

SPACE-BASED LAWFARE: Protests over SpaceX contract put timetable for lunar return in limbo.

BETTER THAN THE VACCINES: Risk of COVID-19 reinfection less than 1%, study finds. My prediction is that natural immunity will “wane” less than they predict here, because SARS immunity — a very closely related virus — is still good after nearly two decades.

THE GASLIGHTING WILL CONTINUE UNTIL MORALE IMPROVES: Janice Dean Is Having None of Chris Cuomo’s Spin on Staged Basement Emergence.

CRITICAL RACE THEORY: Schoolhouse Scapegoat.

GOODER AND HARDER: Joe Biden Voters Discover They Voted for Joe Biden.

WOKE INDOCTRINATION and Sorokin’s Norma.

BRYAN PRESTON: Will The Oak Island Money Pit Mystery Ever Be Solved?

It’s a VIP piece, but if you want to sign up for PJ VIP you can use the code PRESTON for a discount.

(Bumped.)

ON WILLIE MAYS’ BIRTHDAY, NANCY PELOSI POSTS PHOTO OF WRONG GIANTS LEGEND NAMED WILLIE:

On Willie Mays’ 90th birthday Thursday, the Twitter account for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi posted a picture of … Willie McCovey.

The tweet, which showed the San Francisco Democrat with McCovey, was removed quickly and replaced with an image of Pelosi with the correct Willie, though the caption remained the same.

* * * * * * * *

It’s not the first time a high-profile politician has made an error like this one.

When civil rights icon and Georgia Rep. John Lewis died last year, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio (or someone on his staff) posted a picture of himself with also-deceased Rep. Elijah Cummings instead and was criticized harshly.

Pelosi did not receive anywhere near as much blowback, and her office later blamed a staffer for the gaffe.

“Pelosi did not receive anywhere near as much blowback:”


RIP TO JAGUAR’S GREATEST SALESPERSON EVER: Tawny Kitaen, ’80s Music Video Vixen and Bachelor Party Star, Dies at 59.

BRITISH ACTRESS APPROPRIATELY HUMBLED BY EVERYDAY AMERICAN CULTURE: Kate Winslet Describes Being Awestruck By ‘Mythical’ Wawa Convenience Store.

Flashback: When Boris Yeltsin went grocery shopping in Houston.

THE POWER LINE WEEK IN PICTURES: Wide-Angle Edition.

NO MAN IS SAFE: There is a new book coming out soon by actor and director Greg Ellis called The Respondent: Exposing the Cartel of Family Law. There is an introduction by Johnny Depp who says about the book: “If you’re trapped in the dungeon that is the family court system, The Respondent should be your constant companion.” I need to read this.

ANNALS OF LEFTIST AUTOPHAGY: CAIR is demanding the NBA stop supporting China’s Muslim genocide. Join them.

HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE: Texas Virtual Academy trains students to enter workforce right after high school. Many institutions in our society are becoming obsolete, and the pandemic has accelerated that process.

WELCOME BACK CARTER: Twitter’s take on a tweet by Donald Trump Jr. is really something special.

“Fair enough. Carter won a Peace Prize and has built a lot of houses for charity in his post-presidency. But, economically speaking, his presidency was not a fun time for most Americans. So why is Twitter spinning for aggrieved Democrats? I’m assuming a person wrote this nonsense. Again, it sounds like a Vox headline, i.e. ‘Well, akshually…’”

I’m assuming the young tykes who program Twitter’s “Trending Posts” are far too young to have been around in the 1970s, and have no knowledge about just how gloomy the Carter years were, with runaway inflation, unemployment, interest rates, gas prices, a defenestrated military and the infamous “malaise speech.” They just know he has a (D) after his name,  he’s not the Bad Orange Man, and his son must be wrong, so Carter must be defended. Ben Rhodes famously said, “The average reporter we talk to is 27 years old, and their only reporting experience consists of being around political campaigns. That’s a sea change. They literally know nothing.” Those who can’t cut as reporters wind up working for Twitter.

I SUSPECT THIS IS MORE ABOUT MONEY THAN HYGIENE: AALS Cancels In-Person Faculty Hiring Conference For Second Year In A Row Due To COVID-19. Though it seems like a bad call for AALS, if people realize they don’t need that conference to do hiring at all.

WELCOME BACK, CARTER: Milton Friedman’s Revenge.

Why anyone would want to repeat this experiment in the dismal science is a mystery. Biden, however, is fixated not on inflation but on repudiating the legacy of the man known for describing it as “always and everywhere a monetary phenomenon in the sense that it is and can be produced only by a more rapid increase in the quantity of money than in output.”

Milton Friedman, whose empiricism led him to embrace free market public policy, was the most influential economist of the second half of the 20th century. But Biden has a weird habit of treating Friedman as a devilish spirit who must be exorcised from the nation’s capital. For Biden, Friedman represents deregulation, low taxes, and the idea that a corporation’s primary responsibility is not to a group of politicized “stakeholders” but to its shareholders. “Milton Friedman isn’t running the show anymore,” Biden told Politico last year. “When did Milton Friedman die and become king?” Biden asked in 2019. The truth is that Friedman, who died in 2006, has held little sway over either Democrats or Republicans for almost two decades. But Biden wants to mark the definitive end of Friedman and the “neoliberal” economics he espoused by unleashing a tsunami of dollars into the global economy and inundating Americans with new entitlements.

The irony is that Biden’s rejection of Friedman’s teachings on money, taxes, and spending may bring about the same circumstances that established Friedman’s preeminence. In a year or two, the American economy and Biden’s political fortunes may look considerably different than when Janet Yellen blurted out the obvious about inflation. Voters won’t like the combination of rising prices and declining assets. Biden’s experts might rediscover that it is difficult to control or stop inflation once it begins. And Milton Friedman will have his revenge.

Or to put it another way: The Message Washington Needs to Hear Right Now: STOP!

IF IT WERE ONLY THAT:  Brown U. Professor: Teaching Identity Politics is a ‘Criminal Abdication’ of Our Responsibilities.

What it actually is, is tap dancing on the dynamite barrel of Western civilization. This will not end well, unless we end it soon.

CHRISTOPHER RUFO: The Wokest Place on Earth.

The Walt Disney Corporation famously bills its amusement parks as “the happiest place on Earth,” but inside the company’s headquarters in Burbank, California, a conflict is brewing. In the past year, Disney executives have elevated the ideology of critical race theory into a new corporate dogma, bombarded employees with trainings on “systemic racism,” “white privilege,” “white fragility,” and “white saviors,” and launched racially segregated “affinity groups” at the company’s headquarters.

* * * * * * * *

Multiple Disney employees told me the political environment at the company has intensified in recent months. There are “almost daily memos, suggested readings, panels, and seminars that [are] all centered around antiracism,” said one employee. The company is “completely ideologically one-sided” and actively discourages conservative and Christian employees from expressing their views. “I attended several [training sessions] at the beginning just to see what the temperature of the discussion would be and to gauge if I would be able to bring up my own objections in a safe way—safe meaning for my career. And I’ve continually gotten the unspoken answer: ‘no,’” said the employee. “It’s been very stifling to feel like everyone keeps talking about having open dialogue and compassionate conversations, but when it comes down to it, I know if I said one thing that was truthful, based on data, or even just based on my own personal experience, it would actually be rather unwelcomed.”

Despite these internal warnings, there is no sign that Disney is slowing down its efforts to achieve ideological purity. The company recently fired actress Gina Carano for expressing a conservative viewpoint. Content managers have modified and added “content advisories” to films such as Dumbo, Aladdin, and Fantasia, which, according to an internal video I have obtained, executives have denounced as “racist content.” In the same video, executive chairman Bob Iger pledged that the company “should be taking a stand” on political controversies and will no longer “shy away from politics” in the future.

Disney’s premise has always been to provide an escape for middle Americans, but its executives seem to harbor growing contempt for the very people who visit their amusement parks, watch their films, and buy their merchandise. Once known as the “Happiest Place on Earth,” Disney has now committed to becoming the “wokest place on Earth”—whatever the cost.

If there’s anyone who studies Disney’s amusement parks Kremlinologist-style, it will be fascinating (and depressing) to see how management’s uber-wokeness manifests itself there, particularly in sections such as Liberty Square.

Related: Also from Rufo: What critical race theory is really about.

BIRTHING PERSON OF ALL SILLINESS:

I’m also not saying the majority should always give in—or give too much—to the minority. Take the recent algae plume of stupidity on Twitter. Rep. Cori Bush referred to mothers as “birthing people.” This elicited immediate, and deserved, mockery from many folks on the right, including yours truly. NARAL—or, at least, NARAL’s Twitter person—rallied to her cause.

Birthing-person-of-pearl! (Or for those of a certain faith, Holy Birthing Person of God!) This is a seamless disco ball of absurdity, radiating inanity from every angle. If one of the core tenets of the new Great Awokening is that the term “mother” is divisive or bigoted, then the Great Awokening is doomed (and deservedly so). Don’t tell me conservatives are too obsessed with silly and divisive culture war “distractions,” if in the next breath you’re going to lecture me on the need to erase the term “mother” from the English language.

One of the most interesting divides on the left is between socialists and critical race theorists. Some of the best pushback on the execrable 1619 Project came from socialists who think making race, as opposed to class, the focal point of the progressive project is counterproductive. It’s a fresh opening of a fascinating old divide that had once been central to the left when Marxism was taken more seriously by serious people. Anything that distracts from the class struggle is a gift to what Randi Weingarten calls the “ownership class.” This argument was applied to everything from Mickey Mouse to the welfare state to slavery reparations.

My point isn’t that mom-erasure sets back the class struggle, my point is that mom-erasure sets back the transgender cause, and virtually every other left-wing cause as well. People aren’t going to stop calling their mothers “mother” or “mom” or anything of the sort. Kids aren’t going to fall off a swing at the playground and shout, “Birthing person! I have an ouchie!” (And before you accuse me of perpetuating gender stereotypes, if dad is at the playground, they’re not going to shout, “Non-birthing person! I have an ouchie!” either.) And it’s absurd to ask them to, not just because it’s wrong on the merits, but because it’s an utterly doomed project that will invite 100 times more backlash against their cause.

Rep. Bush discovered this the hard way. She’s very mad that conservatives pounced (yes, I’m using that term ironically) on her birthing person comment while ignoring her larger point about the very real problems faced by pregnant black women.

I testified in front of Congress about nearly losing both of my children during childbirth because doctors didn’t believe my pain. Republicans got more upset about me using gender-inclusive language in my testimony than my babies nearly dying. Racism and transphobia in America.

This is bunk. Sure, transphobes and racists no doubt object to replacing “mothers” with “birthing people.” But you know who else does? Almost everybody. If Bush were more interested in communicating her actual message, she might have pondered that for a moment and used language that didn’t turn people off.

“Birthing person” sounds like a Newspeak Dictionary update too far. Read the whole thing.

SOCIALISM: IF YOU BUILD IT, THEY WILL LEAVE. California Population Fell by More Than 180,000 in 2020, State’s First Ever Yearly Drop.

CIVIL RIGHTS UPDATE: Glock wins (and Biden loses) in major liability suit.

So at the recommendation of Sarah Hoyt, I read Cry Bullies: Protecting yourself against social muggers and victimhood aggression and it was worth the time. It is a short read from a few years ago that packs a lot of information that is still relevant in dealing with the current lot of Karens, SJWs and beta males who think they run the show. They don’t. This book teaches you how to fight back by understanding the mindset of the social harasser and how to put a stop to their nonsense. The right tools and the will to fight back is the only way to deal with our current political climate. Better arm yourself. (Bumped)

IT’S NOT ALL IN YOUR HEAD, YOU KNOW:  The College of the Ozarks is suing Biden and HUD officials over the Administration’s insistence that transgender students be assigned to the dormitory they identify with, rather than the dormitory of their anatomy.

(The brief linked to here was written for the Title IX context rather than for the Fair Housing Act context, but I think the basic logic still applies.  Like Title IX, the Fair Housing Act forbids SEX discrimination, not GENDER discrimination.  At the same time, there seems to be a general agreement that the FHA allows colleges and universities to have separate dorms by sex. Once you get that far, even under the Supreme Court’s decision in Bostock v. Clayton County (in fact especially under Bostock), the College wins for the reasons outlined in the brief.

Here’s the quick version:  In Bostock, Justice Gorsuch was hyper-textual.  He essentially held that if an anatomical women who wears dresses would be hired, but an anatomical man who wears dresses won’t be hired, that’s sex discrimination under Title VII.  But the same logic doesn’t apply here:  If an anatomical woman who wears dresses can live in the women’s  dorm, but a anatomical man who wears dresses can’t live in the women’s dorm, that is indeed sex discrimination, but sex discrimination  is permitted in this context.  If it weren’t permitted, it wouldn’t just be transgender individuals who could “cross over” to the other dorm.  All men (and all women) are being discriminated against when they are not permitted to live in the opposite sex’s dorm.  Note that it doesn’t help HUD’s argument to say, “Well, transgender women (anatomical men who identify as women) really are women.  At that point, they are arguing that the college is treating two kinds of women differently.  But there is no law against discriminating between two different kinds of women; the statute forbids discrimination on the basis of sex.)

RIGGED: Social media’s ban on Trump: Our ‘silence of the lambs’ moment.

INFLATION IS ALWAYS AND EVERYWHERE A MONETARY PHENOMENON: Milton Friedman’s Revenge: The specter of inflation haunts Joe Biden’s presidency.

YEP:

RETURN TO NORMALCY: Pays not to work: How Biden benefits are grinding the economic recovery to a halt.

JIM TREACHER: WH Press Secretary Jen Psaki Wishes Biden Maybe Didn’t Talk So Much.

Have you ever noticed that Joe Biden only says stupid stuff when he opens his mouth? When he keeps his pie-hole shut, he’s fine. He just shuffles around like a 137-year-old man, and his handlers pretend he knows who and where he is, and it’s all good. He doesn’t need to worry because he’s got 95% of the press there to cover for him and promote his agenda, even when he’s in one of his fugue states. But whenever Joe starts flapping his yap, every single time all sorts of crazy, moronic garbage comes out. More than the last guy spewed, even. Joe might be the dumbest president we’ve ever had, and sometimes I actually feel bad for the people whose job it is to clean up after the messes he makes every time he tries to express one of his increasingly erratic thoughts. Then I remember how much money those guys make when they leave the White House for the land of cable news and ghostwritten books and speaker’s fees, and the feeling goes away.

I suspect “President Ron Klain” wishes “Presidentish Biden” didn’t talk so much as well.

Speaking of whom: Ronald Klain retweet indicates WH believes ‘huge miss’ jobs report shows Biden/Dems aren’t spending enough money.

What could go wrong?

LIKE ALL POPULAR LEFTY “SOLUTIONS,” IT MAKES THE PROBLEM WORSE: Expect Ban on Menthol Cigarettes to Worsen Inequities in Criminal Justice.

WAR IS PEACE, FREEDOM IS SLAVERY. Biden Struggles: Disastrous Jobs Report Shows America Is On The ‘Right Track.’

YEAH, THAT’S A REAL POSER: AS THE PANDEMIC ENDS, WHY AREN’T MORE PEOPLE GOING BACK TO WORK? “Government interventions have changed the elasticity of wages, making it harder for firms to hire workers.”

FROM CELIA HAYES AND JEANNE HAYDEN:  The Luna City Compendium #1.


Welcome to Luna City, Karnes County, Texas! Population … well, that varies, depending on the time of year. Luna City; whose Town Square is the architectural jewel of South Texas.

Where the high school football team is called the Mighty Fighting Moths and their yearly Homecoming game is under some strange and irregular curse.

Once meant to be a stop on the San Antonio & Aransas Pass Railroad, but derailed by True Love …

Where there might be a fortune in gold hidden somewhere for the last hundred years ….

Where half the townsfolk has the surname of Gonzalez or Gonzales, they’re all related and descended from the holder of the original Spanish land grant but no one has ever been able to figure out whether his name ended in an ‘s’ or a ‘z’, due to illegible handwriting on the original paperwork! A historic marker on Town Square marks the spot where a local bootlegger was nearly hung in 1926 for (among a long list of offenses against the laws of God and Man) impersonating a nun!

Luna City, where eccentricity is just a part of every-day life. Drop in for a visit – you might never want to leave.

THE AMAZING THING, WHEN I WAS LEARNING ART WAS SEEING BEAUTY IN EVERY HUMAN:  Art and the Mind’s Eye: How Drawing Trains You to See the World More Clearly and to Live with a Deeper Sense of Presence.

Oh, other things too. I just prefer drawing portraits.

ONLY BECAUSE THEIR EXPERTS ARE RELIGIOUS BELIEVERS IN SOCIALISM:  The economy surprises the “experts” – again.

IT’S OKAY. WE’RE NOT DEALING WITH TRUE BELIEVERS:  Types of Tyranny.

I TOO AM LOYAL TO THE DREAM:  Inspiration from a Comic Book: A Blast from the Past.

I bleed red white and blue. To the last drop if needed.

AGAIN, SURE, THEY’RE TOTALLY CONVINCING US THEY’RE NOT USURPERS:  GOP Chairwoman Gives Update on Maricopa County Ballot Audit and Details of Push-back By Arizona State Senate Against DOJ Intervention,

OF COURSE:  Biden Insists April’s Dismal Jobs Report Shows U.S. Economy is on the ‘Right Track’.

The big lie is their last hope.

MORE OF THIS, PLEASE:  Oklahoma Gov. Stitt Signs Bill Banning Critical Race Theory From Public Schools.

YEAH. THEY’RE TOTALLY NOT FASCISTS:  Maryland A.G. To Appoint Panel To Audit Record of Chauvin Expert Witness Dr. David Fowler.

Totally.  Has anyone seen my shocked face? Looks appropriate here.

GUYS? BUY POPCORN:  Black Hammer Group “Liberates” Colorado Land For CHOP Commune.

These guys are at a higher altitude than Vail. Good luck growing anything. Even if any of them were capable of working, and there were more than one woman, and their leader didn’t look like a reject of community college theater class and sound like someone who consumes way too much soy, they’d be doomed. This way? They’ll be doomed in interesting ways. Their story will become a legend of these mountains, and the site of their hilarious and horrible demise another touristic site in Colorado.

They should name it the Alferd Packer Memorial Camp and cut through the chase.

IT WAS NEVER ANYTHING TO BE THAT SCARED OF:  Don’t buy the fearmongering: The COVID-19 threat is waning.

Now they’re trying really hard to make “climate crisis” a thing, apparently forgetting that those of us who aren’t autistic Swedes were already over that bs before they ran the virus scare.

THE SOCIALISTS IN VARIOUS COUNTRIES HAVE LONG SINCE STOPPED BEING ABOUT THE WORKING CLASS:  The real question Labour can’t answer.

Of course, since Marx, it never was. The imagined proletariat was never real working people. It was the febrile dreams of radical losers who imagined this creature, capable of the violence they themselves feared, being the instrument of their vengeance on the world.  Let’s face it, a lot of pain could have been saved by giving Marx thorazine.

May 7, 2021

YOU DON’T KNOW IF SOMEONE HAS FAILED UNTIL YOU KNOW WHAT THEY’RE TRYING TO ACHIEVE: The Gospel of Failure: Our ruling classes just keep insisting on the same bad ideas.

HAHA:

OPEN THREAD: Time to open up your window and let in better weather.

SPACE: Virgin Orbit schedules next LauncherOne mission for June.

OUT: JIM CROW ON STEROIDS. IN: JIMMY CARTER ON STEROIDS. Liberal Knickers in a Twist After Trump Jr. Compares Biden to Jimmy Carter.

Plus:

BUREAUCRATIC OPPRESSION: Biden’s ‘Ghost Gun’ Ban Proposal Officially Arrives.

I CAN SMELL THE CHEMICALS: Follow the science and abandon the cult of Clorox.

GOING DOWN: Mexico City Is Sinking at an Alarming And Largely Unstoppable Rate, New Data Finds. Down, down, down, down, down.

#JOURNALISM: Profiles in Really Bad Media Headlines: Pre-April Jobs Report Edition.

Related, from a friend:

CIVIL RIGHTS UPDATE: Kansas Legislature Overrides Veto to Pass Gun-Carry Bill.

OF COURSE SHE DOES: St. Louis circuit attorney denies misconduct charges stemming from Greitens probe.

I THINK THIS WAS AN UNFORCED ERROR: Decision to pull police from Knox County Schools “beyond comprehension” says Anderson County sheriff. I predict that public school enrollment for next year, already under pressure from Covid experiences, will drop further because of this decision. The percentage of voters in the city who actually want this is relatively small, though they are noisy.

Mostly I just note that a decade ago everyone wanted cops all over the schools because the issue du jour was school violence. Now that everyone’s yammering has changed topics, the policy shifts 180 degrees. Maybe responding to hysterical people is a bad basis for policy.

SECRET WARS: TAKE MY MONEY AWAY! Blinken refuses to call Biden’s superpower competition with China a ‘new Cold War.’

HMM: Unnecessary MRI exams may be symptoms of a larger healthcare problem. “Though MRIs are relatively harmless to the patient, Young notes that the willingness to authorize unnecessary imagings heightens concerns that other types of inappropriate procedures—including surgeries—may be referred to patients inappropriately.”

AT HELEN’S PAGE: A Liberty Loving Coffee site. “When you purchase Full Metal Java, we give back to those who serve and have served our great country!’

HAMBURGER ADS! POP UP IN MY HEAD! McDonald’s comes roaring back as restrictions ease.

GOV. DeSANTIS INTENDS TO REQUIRE UNEMPLOYMENT CLAIMANTS TO SHOW THEY’VE BEEN LOOKING FOR WORK:   That sounds like the right call to me.

I spoke to someone very familiar with the restaurant industry here in San Diego a few days ago.  She told me much the same thing as Power Line’s Paul Mirengoff reports from Florida:  Restaurants here are having a hard time staffing up.  Their former employees are getting unemployment benefits, and many of them don’t want to come back to work until they have to.  My “informant” told me her own roommate doesn’t want to go back to work.  Alas, stories like that seem to be everywhere these days.

GOOD: Young Americans are Turning Down Gun Control. “Three years ago, 65% of those polled supported more gun control. This year that number is 45%.”

SAY ANYTHING: Biden’s Amtrak Tale, Was It Lyin Joe Biden Or Dementia Joe?

STANDING UP AGAINST HATE: Tennessee Bans Schools from Teaching Critical Race Theory.

BECAUSE WE’RE PAYING THEM GENEROUSLY NOT TO WORK, AND FOR AN EXTENDED TIME. NEXT QUESTION? The Jobs are There So Why Aren’t People Going Back to Work?

UPDATE (FROM GLENN): Even at the NYT, this is a high-rated comment:. “Maybe paying people more to be unemployed than to work has consequences? I’ve been out to eat with 2 waiters working an entire establishment. No one wants to work now. Same thing with Lyft and gig work. Bring back proof of looking for employment and curtail unemployment benefits when we have this many job openings. Helicopter money is temporary, not permanent.”

NOTHING TO SEE HERE, MOVE ALONG: Election Auditors Say Maricopa County Is Refusing to Provide Routers.

(UPDATE: Link was broken, fixed now. Sorry.)

NEWS YOU CAN USE: How to Hone Your Handgun Skills.

WILL RELIGIOUS FREEDOM SURVIVE: Ken Starr thinks it will because America has such a robust legal bulwark and cultural tradition of protection, but Casey Chalk, writing in The Federalist, is not so sure. A bit lengthy, but well worth the reading time.

BIDEN’S RETURN TO CLEAN GOVERNMENT: Biden Admin Hiding Damning Report on Student Debt Crisis, Lawmakers Say. “In a letter to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), Representatives Virginia Foxx (R., N.C.) and Greg Murphy (R., N.C.) say Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona is hiding information from a Trump-era report that found that student loan repayments have continuously fallen short of the Education Department’s projections. Taxpayers may end up footing the bill for that discrepancy, which could amount to roughly one third of the federal government’s $1.6 trillion student loan portfolio.”

WE’LL DANCE IN THE GARDEN IN TORN SHEETS IN THE RAIN: Treasury warns of need to deal with national debt limit.

THE BIDEN ECONOMY: Who’s Hiring And Who’s Firing In April: A Golden Age For Waiters And Card Dealers. “The reality is that the number could have been even worse: had it not been for some 187,000 workers added in food service and drinking places (i.e. waiters and bartenders) as well as 72,700 gambling, amusements and recreation workers (i.e., card dealers), the April print would have been virtually unchanged from last month.”

TATER TUMBLES: CNN’s Brian Stelter returns from vacation to host lowest-rated Reliable Sources of year. “To make matters worse for Stelter, his own show performed better last week when replacement host John Avlon filled in. The Avlon-hosted edition of ‘Reliable Sources’ on April 25 averaged 907,000 for nearly a 100,000-viewer increase over Stelter’s return.”

(Via Ace.)

NEWS YOU CAN USE: 1 in 4 heart attacks arrive with ‘atypical’ symptoms. “Atypical heart attack symptoms include breathing problems, extreme exhaustion and abdominal pain.”

WHAT AN ACTUAL INSURRECTION LOOKS LIKE: Portland BLM/Antifa Draw Guns on Drivers to Enforce No-Go Zone in Broad Daylight.

WHY IS THE LEFT SUCH A CESSPIT OF RACISM? Biden Restaurant Relief Fund: White People Need Not Apply.

Flashback: “I am concerned, as I’m sure many of you are, that these jobs not simply go to high-skilled people who are already professionals or to white male construction workers.”

—Robert Reich, testimony to Congress on the Obama administration’s proposed economic stimulus, January 7, 2009.

To paraphrase Jon Gabriel’s tweet of the (previous) decade, my favorite part about the Obama-Biden era is all the racial healing.

ALSO, IT’S DELICIOUS: Study: Mediterranean diet may help ward off dementia.

PANDEMIC THEATER: Fauci to virtually address in-person commencement ceremonies “Dr. Fauci will not be attending due to concerns regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, though the university has deemed the ceremony itself safe enough to be in person.”

BETHANY MANDEL: On the Anniversary of “Grandma Killer” and Empathy. “I’m angry that we’re here a year later, with not one, not two, but three different vaccines on the market, and I’m expected to feel sorry not for the people who lost everything, but for those who at best stayed silent, and at worst loudly cheered the ‘necessity’ of the lockdowns across the country.”

Call it people being “institutionalized” by COVID, for lack of a better phrase.

AT HELEN’S PAGE: Titles By Setsoru.

THAT ’70s SHOW: Media suddenly focused on inflation after massive spending spree in DC.

Oddly, no one’s talking about the six trillion dollars or so that Congress and the White House has spent off the books as part of the pandemic response. That’s essentially the same as printing money, and that has its own inflationary effects. But the conditions and incentives created by those massive spending bills have inflationary impacts of their own. Lawmakers are using those conditions to force an artificial increase in labor costs, which go directly to producer and consumer prices and inflation. Direct stimulus, a key part of all three relief bills, produces a “sugar high” of consumption that puts strain on supply, which results in — ta da! — price increases.

From Amity Shlaes’ recent book, Great Society: “Another expert safely out of reach of [Lyndon] Johnson, at the National Bureau of Economic Research, was Arthur Burns. [Alan] Greenspan was just one economist; Burns, who headed the NBER, was the voice of the entire economics profession, independent and proud. Back in the 1950s, he had warned that ‘the problems of inflation will return to haunt us.’ It had been Burns who back in 1960 had warned the presidential candidate Richard Nixon—correctly, as it turned out—that tight monetary policy at the Fed was slowing growth and could cost Nixon the election. Lately, Burns had been charging that Lyndon Johnson’s brand of prosperity featured serious ‘perils of inflation.’ Burns, like Greenspan, pointed to the costs of the butter, not the guns. To attribute the recent large increases in the budget, and certainly future increases, to the costs of war, Burns said, frankly, was ‘a misconception.’ The anti-poverty programs were the problem—a good share of them, as Burns told the New York Times, were ‘pure waste.’ Precisely because they were outsiders, Greenspan and Burns could speak truth to power. Johnson was trading in the Great Dollar for the Great Society, and it was a lousy trade.”

VODKAPUNDIT PRESENTS YOUR DAILY INSANITY WRAP: Tonight We’re Gonna Party Like It’s 1979.

Insanity Wrap needs to know: What could possibly be worse than the 1970s?

Answer: The next four years, at least.

Before we get to the sordid details, a quick preview of today’s Wrap.

  • How do you get a second coup when there was never a first one?
  • Portland Commies Double Down on Commie Holiday
  • Rosanna Arquette says if Jesus were alive today He’d be dead

And so much more.

Bonus Sanity: Britain’s Labour party got kicked in the teeth.

And so much more at the link, you’d have to be crazy to miss it.

NOBLE SAVAGES, LIVING IN HARMONY WITH NATURE: Humans were altering ecosystems with fire some 92,000 years ago.

It wasn’t capitalism that made the mammoths and the saber-tooth tigers extinct.

HEADLINES I DIDN’T SEE COMING: Eldridge Cleaver: The Mormon Years.

Cleaver still had harsh words for some of the cops he’d clashed with in the 1960s. But now he had been to the socialist world, and he had come away convinced that the cops there were even worse. “The thing that I used to resent the most about American police, in my own personal experience, was one time the police in San Francisco kicked my door down,” he said. “But I had an experience in Algeria…over there, the police came through the wall.”

The American left suffers from a lack of perspective.

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