March 22, 2018

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HEALTH: Freezing the ‘hunger nerve’ could help with weight loss.

SEE, THIS WOULD BE A MORE PERSUASIVE ARGUMENT IF THE “EXPERIENCED” CANDIDATE WASN’T THE CORRUPT AND INEPT ANDREW CUOMO: Cynthia Nixon and the Degradation of Experience. And that was true with regard to Trump and Hillary, too.

THAT’S KIND OF COOL: A Star Grazed Our Solar System 70,000 Years Ago, and Early Humans Likely Saw It.


The comingling of black nationalism with intersectional politics has produced a new generation (often of second-generation radicals) that dresses up its racism not only in the lyricism of the old black nationalism of Wright and Baraka, but in the obtuse academic jargon of intersectionality.

That’s where Tamika Mallory and Ta-Nehisi Coates come from. But political word salads and poetry only conceal what you choose not to pay attention to. And that’s why we’re talking about Louis Farrakhan.

The mass of progressive media articles, essays and explainers deployed to protect the Women’s March can be summed up as, “Stop paying attention.” And what we’re not supposed to be paying attention to is the slow death of liberalism and its substitution by the intolerant tribal extremism of identity politics.

It’s why the echo chamber of progressive media has turned against the New York Times editorial page where too many articles questioning identity politics and political censorship have appeared. Bari Weiss and Quinn Norton, articulate young women, are the most immediate targets, but the larger target is James Bennet, the page’s gatekeeper, who is unwisely giving liberals a glimpse of where they’re headed.

The remaining liberals still wandering the open plains of a dying ecosystem don’t understand that they are becoming extinct. When they endorse vocal identity politics movements, it is because they believe that addressing the grievances of their extremists is a necessary step to a tolerant colorblind society.

They haven’t grasped that a tolerant multiracial society is the last thing supremacists of any race want.

Read the whole thing.

QUESTION ASKED: Time to call In Cold Blood fiction?

It’s brilliant prose, if not all true.

DAILY CALLER OP/ED: “Collusion, Corrections And ZOMBIE FACTS That Refuse To Die” How corrections are handled — and mishandled — in online news and how it creates Zombie Facts.
*Bumped up from morning*

YOUR DAILY TREACHER: Facebook Falls Out of Favor with the Left.

WHY ARE DEMOCRATS PRAISING GOP’S ‘FREDDY KRUEGER’ SPENDING BILL? When Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi can barely contain their glee about House passage of that $1.3 Trillion “omnibus spending bill,” something is very wrong.

President Donald Trump supported the measure, too, so he shouldn’t be surprised in coming days when talk heats up again of a new third party, a term limits amendment to the Constitution and convening by the states of a constitutional convention. A demoralized base leads straight to Trump having to deal with a Democratic Congress that won’t hesitate to impeach him.



IT’S THEIR MONEY: PETA Erects Billboard Memorializing Cows Killed in Auto Accident.

BLASTS FROM THE PAST, PART DEUX: The Beatles released their first LP, Please Please Me 55 years ago today: The Beatles’ Marathon Please Please Me Session, Hour by Hour.

The sessions wrapped just after 10:45 p.m., and the following night the Beatles were back out on the road. The venture had cost the record label just £400 (about $11,000 in 2018). “There wasn’t a lot of money at Parlophone,” Martin admitted. “I was working to an annual budget of £55,000.” It took the band just under 10 hours of studio time to record the bulk of their first album, released on March 22nd, 1963, as Please Please Me. As Harrison wryly observed decades later: “The second one took even longer.”

Heh, indeed.™

TABLES TURNED: Alarmists Now ‘Deny’ Climate Science While Big Oil Defends It.

BLASTS FROM THE PAST, PART ONE: 10 Songs From the ’90s That We Still Love To Hear.

ROCKY MOUNTAIN WAY: The Hemperor From New Belgium Is Colorado’s Latest Hemp Beer.

Hemp Beers are nothing new in Colorado. Several have been brewed over the past fifteen years — if not further back — but when New Belgium Brewing releases its new hemp beer, the Hemperor HPA, next month, it will represent a serious effort by the state’s largest craft brewer (and the nation’s fourth-largest) to bring the often controversial and quasi-legal plant into the mainstream market.

The 7 percent ABV beer, which will be sold in six-packs, is brewed with hemp seeds, adding a component that the brewery believes will re-create the flavor of cannabis terpenes, the aromatic oils in plants. Hemp itself is the non-psychoactive cousin of marijuana, often used in textiles, soaps and food.

I can’t recall anyone who smoked pot for the flavor, but this beer has to be better than an over-hopped IPA.

BET YOU DIDN’T KNOW EARNINGS WERE UP IN 22 OF 24 MEASURED INDUSTRIES IN 2017: The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) in the Department of Commerce included that interesting tidbit of information in its announcement Thursday that statewide personal income was up in 2017 by 3.1 percent, compared to 2.3 in 2016.

Mining and agriculture took hits but everything else, especially construction, was up. As of 4 pm today, I found nothing about the BEA data on the Washington Post, Wall Street Journal and New York Times homepages. Maybe I just missed it. Or they did. Coincidental, right?

LOST AND FOUND: Steve McQueen’s Bullitt-Movie Mustang Suddenly Reappeared: This Is How It Happened.

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LOUISIANA SENATOR JOHN KENNEDY ON THE OMNIBUS BILL: “This is a Great Dane-size whizz down the leg of every taxpayer in this country.”

Best video I’ve seen all day.

FLASHBACK: Biden’s Son Fails Drug Test, Is Discharged From Navy.

LONGEVITY: Japanese woman becomes 4th oldest person in history.

Research and verification by the Gerontology Research Group (GRG) shows that Tajima is the world’s oldest living person. She reached 117 years and 231 days on Friday, making her the fourth oldest person in recorded human history, surpassing Marie-Louise Meilleur of Canada.

It marks the first time since December 1999 that someone has been alive who has reached or surpassed Tajima’s age. Other people have claimed to be older, but those claims have never been verified with official documentation and other supporting evidence.

Tajima, who still lives on Kikaijima island, has 9 children and, as of 2017, has more than 160 descendants, including great-great-great-grandchildren, according to the Gerontology Research Group. She has claimed that her secret to longevity is eating delicious things and sleeping well, but she also enjoys hand-dancing to music when the shamisen is played.

Sleep well and eat well — sounds good to me, no matter how long you might last.

IS THERE ANYTHING IT CAN’T DO? Promiscuity may have accelerated animal domestication.

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LEAVING FACEBOOK — IT’S GONE VIRAL! Next Worry for Facebook: Disenchanted Users. “Rising number of users claim to be abandoning social media giant, prompting a warning from some analysts that its growth could slow.”

Throughout previous controversies in recent years, Facebook’s user population has climbed steadily, providing the critical base that draws an ever growing gusher of advertising revenue.

Now Facebook is contending with a groundswell of users—some of whom are tweeting under the hashtag #DeleteFacebook—who claim to be abandoning the social media giant, prompting some analysts to warn that its growth juggernaut could sputter.

“The biggest issue we see for Facebook is if the DeleteFacebook leads to user attrition and eventually ad dollars allocated elsewhere,” Barclays analysts said in a research note Tuesday. The public backlash also could impinge on Facebook’s ability to recruit talented engineers, they said.

Late Wednesday, financial services firm Stifel slashed its target price for Facebook shares to $168 from $195, saying, “Facebook’s current plight reminds us of eBay in 2004—an unstructured content business built on trust that lost that trust prior to implementing policies to add structure and process.”

I’m not leaving Facebook, or at least not yet, because it remains a great way to deliver traffic to the content I produce for non-Facebook platforms. That’s for the simple reason that there are lots and lots of eyeballs on Facebook.

The mistake others have made was moving their platform from independent sites and blogs, over to Facebook. Once there, they’re hostage to either Facebook’s capricious whims, or to that platform suffering a huge loss of trust and/or users.

CELEBRATE HUMAN ACHIEVEMENT THIS SATURDAY: Every year the environmental scolds ask us to sit in the dark contemplating our sins against Mother Earth for what they call “Earth Hour.” Instead, you could join us in celebrating Human Achievement Hour. As well as keeping the lights on, you could be:

  • Watching your favorite TV show or movie thanks to satellite technology
  • Participating in the craft brewing revolution with a cold drink
  • Facetiming or Skyping with far-off friends and family
  • Traveling home from a night out with a rideshare driver
  • Relaxing at home with plenty of food, heat, and hot water for your family

Celebrate just how far we’ve come from the preindustrial age and, if you’d like, use the hashtag #HAH2018 and tweet examples and photos at @ceidotorg.

WELL, GOOD: Viagra Turns Out to Have a Totally Unexpected Side Effect That Could Save Thousands of Lives. “Researchers studying the effects of Viagra (aka sildenafil) on mice have discovered a small, daily dose of the medication in the animals’ drinking water significantly reduces their risk of developing colorectal cancer.”

ROGER L. SIMON: The Deep State Is in Deep Trouble.


I get the feeling that Washington believes the current unrest is just another Tea Party they can ignore, ridicule, co-opt, or shut down.

That may prove to be a grave mistake.

ELIZABETH WARREN’S RESEARCH HARDEST HIT: Study: Medical bankruptcies may not be as common as thought.

Medical bills can push patients over the financial cliff, but a new study says this may not happen as often as previous research suggests.

Hospitalizations cause only about 4 percent of personal bankruptcies among non-elderly U.S. adults, according to an analysis published Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicine.

This contrasts with previous research by former Harvard professor and current U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren and others that pointed to medical reasons as the trigger for more than 60 percent of U.S. bankruptcies.

Background on Elizabeth Warren’s shady research here. Remember that her conclusions were among the major arguments for ObamaCare.

Related: ” I don’t know which is worse: the notion that Elizabeth Warren understood what she was doing, or the notion that she didn’t.”

I should note that Gail Heriot exposed Warren’s research as bogus back in 2006, but the Post continued to hold her up. Had the more-or-less fraudulent nature of her work gotten national attention then, would Warren be a Senator today? Would ObamaCare have passed?

YUGE: Trump attorney John Dowd resigns amid shake-up in president’s legal team.

Tyler O’Neil adds:

Lawyer John Dowd will resign after Trump refused to take his advice and insisted he should testify to Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

Sorry, President Trump, but Dowd is right. Mueller could catch the president and push for perjury, should the president say anything amiss under oath.

Dowd also told my old Hillsdale College classmate Betsy Woodruff that Trump should fire Mueller.


IT’S ONLY A WEAPON WHEN REPUBLICANS USE IT: How Facebook Went From ‘Ideal Way’ to Reach Voters to Being ‘Weaponized.’

YOU’LL NEVER GUESS NUMBER 23! Bradley Areheart: The Top 100 Law Reviews: A Reference Guide Based on Historical USNWR Data.

UH OH: Mumps vaccine protection may be waning, driving rise in U.S. cases.

HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE, LEGAL EDUCATION: Savannah Law School Sells Building, To Close After Spring 2018 Semester. This is a good place, with good faculty, in a good location, and if it can’t make it it bodes poorly for some other schools.

BRIDGET JOHNSON: Spending Deal Stipulates Border Security Funding Can’t Build Concrete Wall. “Ryan pitches plan personally at White House to secure Trump’s support as Schumer declares ‘at the end of the day we Democrats feel very good’.”

I bet.

VICTOR DAVIS HANSON: Camouflaged Elites. “Even in the mostly egalitarian city-states of classical Greece, the wealthy were readily identifiable. A man of privilege was easy to spot by his remarkable possession of a horse, the fine quality of his tunic, or by his mastery of Greek syntax and vocabulary. . . . But today, the line separating the elite from the masses has blurred. First, the cultural revolution of the 1960s made it cool for everyone to dress sloppily and to talk with slang and profanity. Levis, T-shirts, and sneakers became the hip American uniform, a way of superficially equalizing the unequal. Contrived informality radiated the veneer of class solidarity. Multimillionaires like Bruce Springsteen and Bono appear indistinguishable from welders on the street. The locus classicus is perhaps Facebook owner Mark Zuckerberg.”

HEALTH: Passive Detection of Atrial Fibrillation Using a Commercially Available Smartwatch. “This proof-of-concept study found that smartwatch photoplethysmography coupled with a deep neural network can passively detect AF [atrial fibrillation] but with some loss of sensitivity and specificity against a criterion-standard ECG. Further studies will help identify the optimal role for smartwatch-guided rhythm assessment.”

LIZ PEEK: Rivals and consumers will rein in Facebook, not regulation.

Also advertisers.

BEN SHAPIRO: Stop Making Children Into Moral Authorities.

On March 14, high school students from Parkland, Florida, led a school walkout in favor of gun control. The media have already appointed student witnesses of the horror at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School untouchable moral authorities; their opinions are not to be questioned.

But now, the left has found even more sympathetic faces for its agenda: kindergarteners. According to The Wall Street Journal, “Schools are grappling with how to address the event with children as young as 5 years old and with finding ways for children who are too little to be told about school shootings to take part.” Children in pre-K at Manhattan Country School will sing, “If I Had a Hammer” and “Paz y Libertad.” Public schools like PS 321 in Brooklyn allowed children to do activities linked with the protests.

There is something deeply perverse about using children to promote a political agenda.

Yes, but they don’t care.

IN THE MAIL: From Brian J. Noggle, Coffee House Memories.

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HE’S SCARED: Zuckerberg Says He’s Open to Government Regulating Facebook. “‘I’m actually am not sure we shouldn’t be regulated,’ the Facebook CEO told CNN.”


I got to that via a WaPo piece titled “Jeffrey Toobin to his former professor Alan Dershowitz: ‘What’s happened to you?,'” which makes it seem as though Toobin got the better of Dershowitz, which is certainly not how I would score it. The clip ends with Dershowitz giving a definitive defense of himself as consistent on rule-of-law arguments: “I’m not carrying [Trump’s] water. I’m saying the exact same thing I’ve said for 50 years. And Jeffrey, you ought to know that, you were my student.The fact that it applies to Trump now rather than applying to Bill Clinton is why people like you have turned against me.”

Consistency is an obstacle to the narrative.


IMMIGRATION AND NULLIFICATION: John Calhoun’s California. “There is one sense in which California’s position is even more extreme than that taken by the incendiary South Carolinians of 1832. After all, the proto-confederates at least claimed, however unreasonably, that the federal law they opposed was unconstitutional. California’s politicians, in contrast, do not assert the unconstitutionality of America’s immigration laws. They just don’t want them to be enforced.”

GOOD LORD: Police shot at a man 20 times in his own yard, thinking he had a gun. It was an iPhone.

Video released by the Sacramento Police Department depicts a frantic foot pursuit through darkened streets pierced by white slivers of police flashlight.

The officers spot Clark approaching a house and shout: “Show me your hands! Stop! Stop!”

Clark is seen running, and the two officers round the corner of the house and find him under a covered patio.

An infrared camera on an overhead helicopter briefly loses sight of Clark at this moment.

“Show me your hands! Gun!” an officer shouts and ducks behind the wall in a fraction of a second.

The helicopter footage shows one of the officers appearing to grab his partner to pull him to cover.

Clark steps toward the officers. Behind the wall, one of the officers issues another command. “Show me your hands!” And then: “Gun, gun, gun!”

Both officers open fire. Sparks from the bullets light up the helicopter’s infrared camera in sharp white pops.

The sequence, from the first glimpse of Clark on the patio to the first gunshot, unfolds in about six seconds.

The officers are never heard identifying themselves as police before fatally shooting Clark.

What a mess.

NICK GILLESPIE: Hillary Clinton, Not Donald Trump or Cambridge Analytics, Is Gaslighting America: When can we as a country admit that the “most-qualified candidate in history” lost the 2016 election and get on with living our lives?

nstead of nailing down every electoral vote in less-glamorous precincts, the Clinton campaign spent time raising money and running up popular vote counts in California and New York (she won the popular vote by about 3 million). The same take-it-for-granted attitude that led to her loss was on brazen display in her recent comments to an Indian audience, where she explained “I won the places that represent two-thirds of America’s gross domestic product… I won the places that are optimistic, diverse, dynamic, moving forward…. We don’t do well with married, white women…and part of that is an identification with the Republican Party, and a sort of ongoing pressure to vote the way that your husband, your boss, your son, whoever, believes you should.”

Whenever an election is unexpectedly close, there will always be weird things that crop up to “explain” the result. But just as with George W. Bush’s razor-thin victory in 2000, the real question isn’t what put the underdog over the top but how the hell the odds-on favorite managed to squander such a lead. In 2000, Bush didn’t win so much as Al Gore lost. So it is with 2016: Trump didn’t win as much as Hillary Clinton did everything possible to lose. And now we are paying for her loss by being treated to an endless procession of explanations that will take the measure of every possible reason except for her own incompetence, arrogance, and sense of entitlement.

The literal insanity coming from our alleged best-and-brightest in the wake of the 2016 election (undiminished in 2018!) is proof that our ruling class is unfit to rule.

LEAVING FACEBOOK — IT’S GONE VIRAL! Facebook Advertisers Start Pulling Out.

LIZ SHELD’S MORNING BRIEF: McCabe, Tariffs, Omnibus Hot Mess and Much, Much More. “”Sources tell ABC News that fired deputy ‘Andy’s office’ McCabe had opened a secret investigation against Attorney General Jeff Sessions.”

#IM(NOT)WITHHER: Hillary’s Blame Game Comes Back to Haunt McCaskill’s Re-Election Hopes.

RAND PAUL ON BUDGET: A ‘rotten, terrible’ way to govern. “Really, should we be looking at 1,000 page bills with 24 hours to decide what’s in them? It’s really not a good way to run your government.”

He’s right, of course.

MICHAEL BARONE: Women Against Free Speech.

Majorities of students polled said they supported both free speech and “inclusion and diversity.” When asked which was more important, 53 percent said inclusion and diversity and only 46 percent said free speech.

What I found most striking — the numbers that stood out for me — was the difference between men and women. Among men, 61 percent favored free speech. But only 35 percent of women did so. That’s a result I certainly hadn’t expected.

That number is of particular concern, because women are now a majority of college and university students. They appear to be a preponderance of the campus administrators who enforce schools’ speech and sexual assault codes, at a time when administrators outnumber teachers in higher education. . . . Female students’ willingness to subordinate free speech to political values is disturbing, in a time when habits of mind and behavior developed on campus tend to leach out to the larger society.

Defeat the matriarchy!

GET WOKE, GO BROKE: Survey Says Politicized Sports, Entertainment Driving Viewers Away.

DEPLATFORMED: Reddit announces new addition to site-wide rules regarding the use of Reddit to conduct transactions.

Hello All—

We want to let you know that we have made a new addition to our content policy forbidding transactions for certain goods and services. As of today, users may not use Reddit to solicit or facilitate any transaction or gift involving certain goods and services, including:

Firearms, ammunition, or explosives.

Good catch from “Sam” on Twitter who explains that “the subreddit r/GunDeals [was] merely posts and links to gun retail websites that are fully FFL compliant.”


An increasing number of insiders say, contrary to the multitude of studies and seminars we’ve slogged through, that there is not a shortage of Science Technology and Engineering Majors (STEM) but a glut. . . .

The norm now, in biomedicine and other science fields, is for newly minted PhDs to take three or more one-year stints as postdoctoral fellows in other research labs before getting a tenure-track job. Depending on the discipline and their boss, they may have a chance to pursue some independent work without the distractions of teaching and administration that beset regular faculty. But, more likely, they will serve simply as low-paid help. In large, well-funded labs dealing in hot topics, postdocs and graduate students may be little more than over-specialized technicians.

No, that couldn’t be it.

SMART MOVE: Russia reportedly helped Venezuela launch its petro cryptocurrency to skirt US sanctions.

An executive at a Russian state bank told Time that senior advisers in the Kremlin oversaw the development of the petro and that Russian president Vladimir Putin signed off on the project in 2017. “People close to Putin, they told him this is how to avoid the sanctions,” the executive told Time. “This is how the whole thing started.”

Earlier this week, the Trump administration issued an executive order prohibiting US citizens from purchasing the petro, which Maduro hopes will raise $6 billion and help shore up the country’s failing economy. Venezuela’s currency, the bolívar, has suffered from hyperinflation as a result of government mismanagement and US sanctions. The US has also frozen assets of four current and former officials of the Venezuelan government.

Cryptocurrencies could be an effective form of skirting sanctions. Time reports that Russia floated the idea of creating a digital version of the ruble, but Russia’s central bank said it would risk destabilizing the ruble itself.

“So Russia made its stronghold here in Venezuela,” Armando Armas, an opposition member of Venezuela’s parliament, the National Assembly told Time. “Now they are using Venezuela as a guinea pig for their experiment.”

All that might be true, and yet still not the whole story. If I were Putin, I’d want to help keep Maduro in power for as long as possible by almost any means available. So long as Venezuela remains socialist, the Venezuelan oil industry will continue to underperform — which means higher prices and less competition for Russian oil.

MY WEEKLY DAILY CALLER COLUMN IS UP: “Collusion, Corrections And ZOMBIE FACTS That Refuse To Die.” A look into how corrections are handled — or mishandled — and the effect it has on readers and our collective knowledge.


BILL ROGGIO: US military will not pursue Taliban into Pakistan.

“We have no authority to go into Pakistan,” Pentagon spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Mike Andrews told Pajhwok Afghan News. US forces could ask for authority to chase Taliban fighters as they cross the border into Pakistan, but approval for such action “would certainly be the exception and not the norm,” he continued.

“Say, for example, we have troops in contact and then the Taliban forces go across the border,” Andrews told Pajhwok. “They are clearly inside Pakistan then. There’s no change with regards to respecting the territorial sovereignty of Pakistan.”

In the past the US military has defended its right to pursue Taliban forces retreating into Pakistan under its “inherent right of self defense.”

The US military has in rare cases pursued Taliban fighters as they crossed the border into Pakistan after battling US forces in Afghanistan. Pakistan has responded furiously to such incursions.

I wonder if there’s been a genuine policy change, or if we’re just keeping up appearances with Islamabad.

OF COURSE IT DOES: Under Fire And Losing Trust, Facebook Plays The Victim.

One possible explanation for Facebook management’s blasé attitude is that the company has weathered complaints about violating user privacy since its earliest days. The first revolt came in 2006, when users protested that the service’s news feed was making public information that the users had intended to keep private. The news feed is now the company’s core service. In 2009, Facebook began making users’ posts, which had previously been private, public by default. That incident triggered anger, confusion, an investigation by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, and, ultimately, a consent decree. In 2014, the company disclosed that it had tried to manipulate users’ emotions as part of an internal psychology experiment.

Nothing to see here, move along.

MARK ZUCKERBERG: “We have a responsibility to protect your data, and if we can’t then we don’t deserve to serve you.”

Here’s a timeline of the events:

In 2007, we launched the Facebook Platform with the vision that more apps should be social. Your calendar should be able to show your friends’ birthdays, your maps should show where your friends live, and your address book should show their pictures. To do this, we enabled people to log into apps and share who their friends were and some information about them.

In 2013, a Cambridge University researcher named Aleksandr Kogan created a personality quiz app. It was installed by around 300,000 people who shared their data as well as some of their friends’ data. Given the way our platform worked at the time this meant Kogan was able to access tens of millions of their friends’ data.

In 2014, to prevent abusive apps, we announced that we were changing the entire platform to dramatically limit the data apps could access. Most importantly, apps like Kogan’s could no longer ask for data about a person’s friends unless their friends had also authorized the app. We also required developers to get approval from us before they could request any sensitive data from people. These actions would prevent any app like Kogan’s from being able to access so much data today.

In 2015, we learned from journalists at The Guardian that Kogan had shared data from his app with Cambridge Analytica. It is against our policies for developers to share data without people’s consent, so we immediately banned Kogan’s app from our platform, and demanded that Kogan and Cambridge Analytica formally certify that they had deleted all improperly acquired data. They provided these certifications.

Whether or not you trust CA’s certification or Zuckerberg’s explanation, Stephen Miller notes a curious omission:


Update: Sorry — had attached the wrong tweet to this post. Fixed now.

ZIMBABWE REDUX: A White Farmer Is Killed Every Five Days in South Africa and Authorities Do Nothing About It, Activists Say.

If the numbers are accurate, then South Africa’s ethnic cleansing is just getting started — wait until the locals grasp just how much they can get away with.

In the meantime, I’m sure we can soon expect a few popular protest songs, along with calls for divestiture and sanctions on South Africa’s racist regime.

ROBERT SPENCER: College of the Holy Cross Axes ‘Crusader’ Mascot to Avoid ‘Islamophobia.’


OUT: FAT ACCEPTANCE. IN: FAT SUPREMACY. Asos Slammed For Stocking Size Two Clothing.

March 21, 2018

THIS ALL SEEMS TO HAVE STARTED AFTER TRUMP’S TRIP TO SAUDI ARABIA, WHERE THE PRESS COMMENTARY WAS MOSTLY FOCUSED ON MAKING FUN OF THE “ORB” PICTURE: The Saudis Take On Radical Islam: The crown prince charts a course toward moderation, which prevailed before the 1979 attack on Mecca.

The year 1979 was a watershed for the Middle East. Iranian revolutionaries overthrew the shah, the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, and Sunni Islamic extremists tried to take over the Grand Mosque of Mecca in Saudi Arabia, Islam’s holiest shrine. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman hadn’t been born, but he is fighting the ghosts of 1979 as he dramatically reforms the kingdom.

The attempted takeover of Mecca was a defining event in my country, mainly because of what happened next. Saudi rulers, fearing Iran’s revolutionary example, decided to give more space to the Salafi clerical establishment in hope of countering the radicals. Traditional Salafi preachers are neither violent nor political, but they hold a rigid view of Islam. Their legal rulings and attempts to police morals made the kingdom increasingly intolerant, setting back the gradual opening up that had occurred in the 1960s and ’70s.

In Saudi schools, education was largely in the hands of foreign nationals, many with Muslim Brotherhood backgrounds. In the 1960s and ’70s, Saudi Arabia was more concerned with Gamal Abdel Nasser’s Arab nationalism than with Islamist radicalism. Thus the Muslim Brotherhood wasn’t much of a worry. But the combination of the brotherhood’s political outlook and the rigid Salafi doctrine injected a virus into the Saudi education system. That virus allowed Osama bin Laden to recruit 15 Saudis to take part in that terrible deed on Sept. 11, 2001. We Saudis failed those young men, and that failure had global implications.

The Salafi clerics and Muslim Brotherhood imports also worked in concert as they were given unsupervised access to private donations to fund mosques and madrasas from Karachi to Cairo, where they generally favored the most conservative preachers.

The policy makers’ idea was simple: Give the political Islamists and their Salafi affiliates room to influence educational, judicial and religious affairs, and we will continue to control foreign policy, the economy, and defense. Saudi rulers were handling the hardware, while radicals rewrote the nation’s software. Saudi society, and the Muslim world, is still reeling from the effects.

I can attest that when the Saudi money hit northern Nigeria, the Islam there went from a rather mellow Sufi variety to, well, Boko Haram. Even if all that happens is the Saudis stop funding and promoting radical Islam worldwide, that will be huge. Remember, after the Soviet Union folded, all sorts of “grassroots, authentic” terrorist movements dried up along with the Soviet funding. Something similar could happen here.

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ALAN DERSHOWITZ: Trump is right: The special counsel should never have been appointed.

IF YOU’RE NOT PAYING FOR IT, YOU’RE THE PRODUCT:  “You’re not Facebook’s customer. You’re Facebook’s product,” Ed Morrissey writes at The Week.

Or as John Podhoretz adds at the New York Post, “Sorry: Facebook was never ‘free.’”

DIDN’T STALIN TRY THIS? Prominent Science Fiction Author Calls for Depopulating Rural Areas.

Seems like another reason why rural parts of states might want to secede from urban areas. More on that here.

WHO COULD HAVE SEEN THIS COMING? Pro-Life High School Students Plan A Walkout. Let a thousand lawsuits bloom when schools treat them differently than they did the GunSense-backed kids.

OPEN THREAD. That is all.

EMBRACE THE HEALING POWER OF “AND.” Justin Trudeau on guns: Stupid or liar?

K-12 IMPLOSION UPDATE: Students’ visit to gun range ‘none of your damn business,’ parents say.

Angered by word of the disciplining of two Lacey High School students for a gun-related social media post, 200 parents, community members and other supporters of the Second Amendment on Monday let the Board of Education know they don’t want the district trampling on their rights or meddling in their home lives.

“You guys are reaching into our private life, the private life of our children,” said one parent, Lewis Fiordimondo, who has twins in pre-kindergarten and a daughter at the high school. “It’s not your place. It’s not the school’s place.”

Another dad, Frank Horvath, whose son is a senior at Lacey High, put things in blunter terms.

“It’s none of your damn business what our children do outside of school,” Horvath told the seven board members toward the end of a four-hour meeting, most of it occupied by speaker after speaker venting anger and frustration at school officials largely unable to respond due to confidentiality rules.

The unusually large turnout for Monday night’s board meeting in the high school auditorium was prompted by a five-day in-school suspension of two senior boys after one of them posted a photo of themselves with guns at a local shooting range, away from school property and not during school hours.

Punch back twice as hard.

WELL, BLAMING THE RUSSIANS, AND WHITE WOMEN, HASN’T WORKED AND THEY STILL CAN’T FACE REALITY: Those who cannot believe Trump won the election need a scapegoat and that scapegoat is Mark Zuckerberg.

IT’S ALWAYS IN THE LAST PLACE YOU LOOK: Platypus milk: The key to preventing deadly infections?

WITH YOUTUBE CENSORING EVEN BLAND FIREARMS VIDEO, firearms channels are moving to PornHub. I love it.

“HERE’S YOUR DAILY REMINDER OF HOW PATHETIC CNN HAS BECOME:” Parkland’s Kyle Kashuv Says CNN Canceled Interview After RT Calling Out Their Bias.

Not just any retweet: Kashuv “said that CNN cited a Clay Travis retweet calling out Brooke Baldwin for being a ‘fake news hypocrite.’ Travis, of course, was the sports commentator who was booted off of Baldwin’s CNN Newsroom in September for saying ‘boobs.’”

Not surprisingly, Travis will be interviewing Kashuv on Friday.

Related! Category Five Stormy: CNN Primetime Spends 149 Minutes Ogling Stormy Daniels Scandal.

BECAUSE PEOPLE ARE STUPID: Why no one should be surprised that hospitals face dangerous opioid shortages. “This shortage doesn’t surprise me, though I’m surprised that the media appear to be concerned now about an opioid shortage after spending so much energy on whipping up political and public anger toward opioids.” Actually, the media’s 180 from one kind of hysteria to the other is the least surprising thing of all.


GET WOKE, GO BROKE: Dick’s Posts ‘Deeper than Expected’ Losses Weeks After Taking Anti-Gun Stance.

WE NEED TO BAN SOCIAL MEDIA. FOR THE CHILDREN. Too much Facebook, Instagram could be tough on girls.

DISPATCHES FROM THE K-12 IMPLOSION. Watch: Pissed Off Dad GOES OFF on Principal for Allowing 12-Year-Olds to Hold Gun Control Walkout.


JUST THINK OF THE MEDIA AS DEMOCRATIC ACTIVISTS WITH BYLINES, AND IT ALL MAKES SENSE: Anybody recall the media looking at Gina McCarthy’s travel expenses?

JACK DUNPHY: Los Angeles Times Buries the Lede in Brendon Glenn Shooting.

FASTER? PLEASE! Cadillac debuts CT6 V-Sport with new twin-turbo V8.

The CT6 is a good-looking sedan and has been earning some solid reviews since it debuted two years ago, even with the smaller V6 engines.

I just wish they’d give it a proper Cadillac name.

PRIVACY: How I went dark in Australia’s surveillance state for 2 years.

In 2015, during the transition from paper to Opal [contactless public transit cards], Australia passed sweeping new data retention laws. These laws required all Australian internet service providers and telecommunications carriers to retain customers’ phone and internet metadata for two years — details like the phone number a person calls, the timestamps on text messages or the cell tower a phone pings when it makes a call.

Suddenly, Australians were fighting for the right to stay anonymous in a digital world.

On one side of the fence: safety-conscious civilians. They argued that this metadata was a powerful tool and that the ability to track a person’s movements through phone pings or call times was vital for law enforcement.

On the other side of the fence: digital civil libertarians. They argued that the data retention scheme was invasive and that this metadata could be used to build up an incredibly detailed picture of someone’s life.

And sitting in a barn two paddocks away from that fence: me, switching out burner phones and researching VPNs.

When it emerged that police had the power to search Opal card data, track people’s movements and match this to individual users, it was the last straw. August 2016 rolled around, paperless tickets were phased out and I hatched my plan.

It’s a fascinating story.

INSIDE EVERY LIBERAL IS A TOTALITARIAN SCREAMING TO GET OUT: Prominent Science Fiction Author Calls for Depopulating Rural Areas.

(Classical reference in headline.)

I’LL BE ON THE DREW MARIANI SHOW (GUEST HOSTED BY ED MORRISSEY) in a few minutes, talking about my state secession paper.

IF IT MOVES, TAX IT: EU proposes online turnover tax for big tech firms.

Under the Commission’s plan, companies with significant digital revenues in Europe will pay a 3 percent tax on their turnover on various online services in the European Union, bringing in an estimated 5 billion euros ($6.1 billion).

EU Economics Commissioner Pierre Moscovici brushed off accusations that he was going after rich American tech companies to enrich EU coffers at a time when the bloc is at odds with the Trump administration over trade and taxation issues.

“This is neither a GAFA (Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon) attack nor an anti-U.S. attack proposal that will target any company or any country,” he told a news conference.

The tax would apply to large firms with annual worldwide revenue above 750 million euros ($920 million) and annual “taxable” EU revenues above 50 million euros.

I was frankly surprised to read that there are enough EU leaders opposed to make approval uncertain.