February 24, 2017

FIVE CELEBS THE DEMS SHOULD CONSIDER RUNNING AGAINST TRUMP IN 2020.

I’m so old, I remember when the left seethed with anger over the notion of an actor running for the presidency – – let alone the world’s biggest celebrity.

NIGEL FARAGE ON TRUMP AT CPAC: The EU Is ‘Absolutely Terrified of Him – Good.’ Video at the link.

SHE PERSISTED: A state senator is removed from the chamber for her comments about Tom Hayden and Vietnam.

Hayden was an outspoken critic of the Vietnam War and made celebrated trips to North Vietnam and Cambodia, offering to help broker a peaceful end. Nguyen, who did not speak during the remembrance of Hayden earlier in the week, said the late Democratic activist’s efforts were seen differently by refugees and “all those who fought in Vietnam for freedom and democracy.”

In the statement which she later posted on her official Senate website , Nguyen criticized Hayden for siding “with a communist government that enslaved and/or killed millions of Vietnamese, including members of my own family.”

Lefties throw the word “treason” around a lot these days. But this. . . .

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NEWS YOU CAN USE: “Here’s a simple test for detecting whether you are living in George Orwell’s ‘1984.’ If you feel free to tell everyone you’re living in ‘1984,’ you aren’t.”

Not to mention how embarrassing such talk sounds to those us who lived through the original 1984, when a Republican president engendered the same comparison, from many of the same people.

BETSY DEVOS TO COLLEGE CONSERVATIVES: Don’t Shut Up!

Speaking at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference, DeVos initially brought up the First Amendment as it relates to college students during her opening remarks, saying that college faculty often tell students “what to think.”

“They say that if you voted for Donald Trump, you are a threat to the university, too.” DeVos said. “But the real threat is silencing the First Amendment rights of people with whom you disagree.”

After her brief opening remarks, DeVos was interviewed by CNN commentator Kayleigh McEnany. While much of the focus of the interview was on school choice and DeVos’ recent letter regarding Obama-era guidance on school bathrooms, McEnany briefly touched on the issue of academic freedom, asking DeVos what advice she would give to conservative students who feel “bullied” after sharing their views.

“I think my first advice would be don’t shut up. Keep talking. Keep making your arguments,” DeVos said, to applause. “You can do so respectfully and with civility, but I think you need to do so with confidence.”

Remember: You’re not stuck there with them. They’re stuck there with you.

SHE’S SEETHING WITH EMPOWERMENT: “It was July 2014, Nashville Tennessee. I was walking into a gas station for a bottle of water when the man behind me stepped up to open the door for me. With that act of kindness, something inside me snapped and I flew into a blind rage. I began screaming at him at the top of my lungs.”

It would take a heart of stone not to laugh. Read the whole thing.

WHY ARE UNIVERSITIES SUCH CESSPITS OF HATRED? Michigan State Bans Whiteboards in Dorms Because of ‘Racist, Sexist’ Messages.

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IT’S NICE TO SEE BETSY DEVOS speaking out against academia’s hostile environment for conservative and libertarian students. Meanwhile, the commenters over at Inside Higher Ed immediately proceeded to prove her right.

UPDATE: And now, Inside Higher Ed has taken down the comments on the piece. Not exactly undercutting DeVos’s point there, either. . . .

WORKS FOR ME: Bannon vows a daily fight for ‘deconstruction of the administrative state.’

C. BRADLEY THOMPSON: Donald Trump And The Revolt Of The Unseen.

ANALYSIS: TRUE. Nobody cares about any recent Best Picture Oscar winners.

CHANGE: Ruth Bader Ginsburg uncertain about future on Supreme Court: ‘What will be next year?’

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said she intends to finish out 2017 on the Supreme Court but is uncertain about how much longer she will remain on the bench.

Ginsburg, 83 years old, told the BBC she plans to take stock of her future one year at a time.

“At my age you have to take it year-by-year,” Ginsburg told BBC. “I know I’m OK this year, but what will be next year?”

She added, “I’m hopeful, however, because my most senior colleague, the one who most recently retired, Justice John Paul Stevens, stepped down at age 90. So I have a way to go.”

Well, stay tuned.

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MESSAGE FROM CPAC: Conservatives to Congress: Get moving.

SALENA ZITO: Why all your news now comes with a heap of condescension.

Coverage of Trump is often treated as a proxy for how the press thinks of Trump’s supporters. That might be unfair to national reporters chasing down a controversial president. But the disconnect is exacerbated by the fact that far too many Americans don’t have a local press that understands them, and thus all their news comes with a heap of condescension.

Reporters don’t like it when these voters talk down “the media,” as if they’re all part of one monolithic blob. But to those who used to have local news and reporters who lived among them, that’s precisely what the national press is.

Read the whole thing.

NONSENSE. FEELING SUPERIOR TO THE DEPLORABLES IS THE MAIN REASON TO BE A DEMOCRAT. Nicholas Kristof: Trump Voters Aren’t The Enemy.

There are three reasons I think it’s shortsighted to direct liberal fury at the entire mass of Trump voters, a complicated (and, yes, diverse) group of 63 million people.

First, stereotyping a huge slice of America as misogynist bigots is unfair and impairs understanding. Hundreds of thousands of those Trump supporters had voted for Barack Obama. Many are themselves black, Latino or Muslim. Are they all bigots?

Second, demonizing Trump voters feeds the dysfunction of our political system. One can be passionate about one’s cause, and fight for it, without contributing to political paralysis that risks making our country ungovernable.

Tolerance is a liberal value; name-calling isn’t. . . .

Well, I dunno about that. Plus:

The third reason is tactical: It’s hard to win over voters whom you’re insulting.

Many liberals argue that Hillary Clinton won the popular vote and that the focus should be on rallying the base and fighting voter suppression efforts. Yes, but Democrats flopped in Congress, governor races and state legislatures. Republicans now control 68 percent of partisan legislative chambers in the U.S.

If Democrats want to battle voter suppression, it’s crucial to win local races — including in white working-class districts in Ohio, Wisconsin and elsewhere.

Yes, a majority of Trump voters are probably unattainable for Democrats, but millions may be winnable. So don’t blithely give up on 63 million people; instead, make arguments directed at them. Fight for their votes not with race-baiting but with economic pitches for the working and middle classes.

Clinton’s calling half of Trump voters “deplorables” achieved nothing and probably cost her critical votes. Why would Democrats repeat that mistake?

Because feeling superior to the deplorables is one of the main reasons to be a Democrat?

SURE, BUT WHEN DEMOCRATS DO IT IT’S DIFFERENT BECAUSE SHUT UP: Despite the Hysteria, Trump Is Trending Less Authoritarian Than Obama.

PROFESSOR: Don’t Ignore Your Republican Students:

I worry quite a bit for students who I know feel passionately about Republican politics. They, too, deserve to come to class feeling as though they are welcome to share their opinions, that what they have to say matters, and that the classroom is indeed a space for debate and conversation about differing viewpoints. My conservative and progressive students aren’t mounting attacks against each other, but with the intensity of the debate on the liberal side, I fear that Republican students will not only self-censor in my course, but also feel even more marginalized on the college campus than they have in the past. . . . And I also know this still to be true: Despite Trump’s victory, this is also a terrible time to be a college Republican — perhaps one of the worst. College campuses, by and large, tend to be progressive places. Republican students see protests of Trump decisions they may agree with — the implication being that what Republicans stand for is racist, evil, and perhaps a threat to the very nature of American democracy.

Good advice, even if she goes on to say that there’s a “moral imperative” to dismiss Trump.

I THINK, TO DATE, THIS IS MY BEST BOOK: This is an e-arc, i.e. an uncorrected manuscript that the company allows readers to buy if they want the book RIGHT NOW.   E-arc of Darkship Revenge.

Oh, and this cover, by Stephen Hickman is probably the best or second best cover I’ve ever got (vying too close to call to the cover of Darkship Thieves.)  As authors have no say over these, this was an exceptionally lucky draw.

YOUR MASTERS ARE THOSE YOU CAN’T MOCK: Danish man who videoed himself burning the Quran charged with blasphemy.

SO MANY YEARS AGO I WROTE A VERY SILLY MYSTERY: Finally, after many years, it and its two sequels have reverted to me.  I’m bringing them out and will probably finish and add the never-published fourth by mid-March. (Yes, I know I have other series to continue as well.  After the year of … 5? 6? moves we’re settling in and that too will happen. There’s mostly a lot of final edits to get through.) So, without further ado, here is Dipped, Stripped and Dead.  BTW, the cover is by Jack Wylder, a friend of Larry Correia’s and a superb artist.  Highly recommended.

CIRCLING FIRING SQUADS TO THE LEFT: Liberal activists warn party’s lawmakers: Primaries are coming.

IT’S BEEN A LONG TIME COMING: Outside The Beltway, It’s Morning In America Again.

WHY WAS SHE HIRED IN THE LAST DAYS OF THE OUTGOING ADMINISTRATION? Questions loom over who picked America’s chief statistician.

GOOD SHOW, SIR: European welfare benefits help fund ISIS fighters.

ONE MORE FOR THE ROAD FROM A VERY DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVE: Milo and the Bookstore.

OH, I DON’T KNOW ABOUT THAT.  THE LEFT THINKS IT’S WRONG TO BAIT THEM: Milo Yiannopoulos got punished despite having done nothing wrong!

OUR HAWKISH ‘WORLD WAR T’ ELITES: On transgender bathroom access in schools, ruling class waging war on common sense.

To mash-up Donald Rumsfeld, Thomas Sowell, and Hillary Clinton,  when you’re the anointed, you go to war against the deplorables you have.

February 23, 2017

CHANGE: AFL-CIO cutting staff as union membership declines. “The union spokesman blamed the downsizing on ‘well-financed anti-union opposition’ but it’s really the result of former members who have been freed up by right-to-work laws to not have union dues taken from their paychecks. Wisconsin saw a decrease of over 100,000 union members after the passage of ACT 10 in 2011. Michigan, which passed a right-to-work law in 2013, lost 20,000 union members between 2015 and last year. AFL-CIO is not the only union to downsize since Trump was elected. In December the SEIU announced it was planning for 30% budget cuts.”

If unions provided value, people would pay dues voluntarily.

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TED CRUZ AT CPAC: ‘Do Democrats Understand They Need to Control the House to Impeach?’

On the flip-side, does their base understand this is simply the posturing the establishment left does every time there’s a Republican in the White House?

STRESS HORMONE LINKED TO PERSISTENT OBESITY. “The paper published today in the journal Obesity found that people who have a higher level of the stress hormone cortisol, which affect’s the body’s metabolism and how it distributes fat, over a long period of time may be more likely to be obese. Their levels of cortisol were measured through hair samples.”

WAIT, SOCIAL-MEDIA PHOTOS ARE OFTEN prettied up with makeup? Next you’ll tell me that people photoshop themselves to look better.

HEH: Schumer to GOP: Stop promoting Warren as face of Democrats.

THIS IS CNN. Chris Cuomo: If a 12-Year-Old Girl Doesn’t Want to See a Penis In the Locker Room, That’s Either Because of Her “Overprotective Dad” or Her Own Lack of “Tolerance.”

Related: Video surfaces of Time-Warner-CNN-HBO’s Bill Maher condoning sex between an adult and a 14-year-old.

SNOWFALLS ARE NOW JUST A THING OF THE PAST: HOW “CLIMATE CHANGE” APOCALYPTICS NEARLY CAUSED A DAM CATASTROPHE IN CALIFORNIA.

(Classical reference in headline.)

HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE: Skills and bills: What state governors have to say about vocational education.

SAD NEWS: Knoxville’s Back Door Tavern closes its doors. I remember when Deana Carter tended bar there, before she made it big.

INDONESIA MAY CONDUCT JOINT PATROLS WITH AUSTRALIA IN SOUTH CHINA SEA: Beijing’s “artificial island imperialism” continues to get push back.

Indonesia is talking softly, but just mentioning joint military patrols indicates Jakarta is upset.

Indonesia President Joko Widodo will discuss the prospect of joint patrols with Australia in the South China Sea when he meets his counterpart Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull at the weekend.

Widodo told The Australian newspaper he would like to see joint patrols with Australia, but only if did not further inflame tensions with China.

“If there is no tension I think it’s very important to have the patrols together. We will discuss this with PM Turnbull,” said Widodo.

Indonesia has traditionally taken a neutral position on the South China Sea, acting as a buffer between China and fellow members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) that have the most at stake, the Philippines and Vietnam.

But after China angered Indonesia by saying the two countries had “overlapping claims” to waters close to Indonesia’s Natuna Islands, Jakarta staged large-scale exercise on the edge of South China Sea in October.

Here’s some background on the “slow invasion.”

RELATED: This post from last year explains why the The U.S. Third Fleet’s operating area has expanded. The USS Carl Vinson is conducting operations in the South China Sea and remains under Third Fleet command.

CLAUDIA ROSETT ON TRUTH, TERROR AND NIKKI HALEY’S CHALLENGE AT THE UN.

Given its infamous — and entirely deserved — reputation as a wretched hive of scum and villainy, the UN is arguably an even worse swamp to drain than DC.

MARK RIPPETOE: Strength Training For People My Age.

NO. NEXT QUESTION? Is Chelsea Clinton Donald Trump’s most formidable Twitter foe?

CHRISTINA HOFF SOMMERS: The ‘Factual Feminist’ debunks stats about sexual assault and the wage gap. “As a feminist and an academic, I felt the need to set things right.”

DIVERSITY IS OUR STRENGTH: Teacher, 28, ‘Gang Raped By 9 Iraqi Immigrants In Vienna Attack.’

HMM: The Race For Autonomous Cars Is Over. Silicon Valley Lost.

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SPACE: Finish Line Looms for Google Lunar XPrize Finalists.

IRAQ SUICIDE BOMBER WAS A FORMER GITMO DETAINEE: Family members identified Abu-Zakariya al-Britani as the suicide bomber who attacked a military base in Mosul this past week. He was released from Guantanamo in 2004.

I FIND THIS EASY TO BELIEVE: Bad Hospital Design Is Making Us Sicker. And I can second the bit about noise and sleep disturbance.

BRIDGET JOHNSON REPORTS FROM CPAC: Gov. Scott Walker Compares Today’s ‘Angry Mobs’ to 2011 Wisconsin Protesters.

VIDEO: Stare into the Abyss of the Mesmerizing ‘Glory Hole’ Spillway.

OF COURSE IT DOES: Media Ignores Disturbing Alliance Between ‘Progressives’ and Anti-Semites.

IN THE AGE OF TRUMP, APOCALYPTIC RHETORIC BECOMES MAINSTREAM.

You went full John Birch Society, leftists. Never go full John Birch Society.

But as Charles Cooke asked the left early last year, during Trump’s ascendency in the GOP primaries, “Has Donald Trump’s remarkable rise done anything to change your mind as to the ideal strength of the State?”

Speaking of which:

DISPATCHES FROM THE REALITY-BASED COMMUNITY:  Witches Unite To Cast Spell Against Donald Trump.

Related: “These days, the left has no moral high ground over the religious right. In fact, I’d take a conservative Christian over a demon-haunted leftist any day, because at least conservative Christians admit that their beliefs are faith-based. They don’t go around screaming ‘science! science! science!’ while drinking sacrificial goats’ blood Santeria-style because the rain gods are angry.”

I SAW THE BEST MINDS OF MY GENERATION DESTROYED BY TRUMP DERANGEMENT SYNDROME, STARVING HYSTERICAL NAKED, DRAGGING THEMSELVES THROUGH THE TRANSGENDERED BATHROOMS AT DAWN LOOKING FOR AN ANGRY FIX. Billionaire Democrat Party Donor J.B. Pritzker: Protest Trump use the other gender’s bathroom today.

ASHE SCHOW: Due process defenders back Education Department critic to lead Office for Civil Rights.

Critics and supporters alike are wondering who might be the next person to lead the Education Department’s Office for Civil Rights, which has overseen in recent years an expansion of responsibilities related to campus sexual assault.

One name being pushed as a nominee is Gail Heriot, a law professor at the University of San Diego and a member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. Heriot has been a critic of OCR’s overreach, even joining fellow Civil Rights commission member Peter Kirsanow in writing a letter to Congress opposing a budget increase for the department.

“[W]e have noticed a disturbing pattern of disregard for the rule of law at OCR,” the two wrote in the letter. “That office has all-too-often been willing to define perfectly legal conduct as unlawful.”

Heriot and Kirsanow added that OCR was only “under-funded” because it had given itself additional responsibilities. “Increasing OCR’s budget would in effect reward the agency for frequently over-stepping the law. It also would provide OCR with additional resources to undertake more ill-considered initiatives for which it lacks authority,” they wrote.

Heriot and Kirsanow argued that OCR’s 2011 “Dear Colleague” letter, which greatly expanded the office’s role in combating an alleged epidemic of campus sexual assault, created a dangerous situation for accused students by requiring schools to adopt a low “preponderance of evidence” standard.

“[G]iven the importance of safeguarding the rights of accused students, the ‘clear and convincing’ standard would seem to be the more appropriate one in at least some situations,” the two wrote.

A group dedicated to the rights of accused students sent a letter to the Trump transition team after the election in support of Heriot to lead OCR. The letter, written by a group called Stop Abusive and Violent Environments (SAVE), was sent with more than 240 signatures supporting Heriot and was published last week.

Although I’ve pushed Robert Shibley of FIRE for this position, I’d also be quite happy with Gail Heriot.

TRANSPARENCY: #CNNLeaks: Project Veritas Releases Over 100 Hours of Audio From Inside CNN.

More at CNNLeaks.com.

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MY USA TODAY COLUMN: Government can’t get us off sugar: Policies promoting sugar, in no small part, got us into this mess.

Inspired by my reading of Gary Taubes’ The Case Against Sugar.

ROGER SIMON: WHAT’S BEHIND THE ACCUSATIONS THAT TRUMP IS ANTI-SEMITIC?

ABOLISH THE ATF: A.T.F. Filled Secret Bank Account With Millions From Shadowy Cigarette Sales. “Working from an office suite behind a Burger King in southern Virginia, operatives used a web of shadowy cigarette sales to funnel tens of millions of dollars into a secret bank account. They weren’t known smugglers, but rather agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The operation, not authorized under Justice Department rules, gave agents an off-the-books way to finance undercover investigations and pay informants without the usual cumbersome paperwork and close oversight, according to court records and people close to the operation.”

Laws and rules are for the little people.

FAKE NEWS, THE EARLY DAYS. After the ‘Cronkite Moment,’ LBJ doubled down on Viet policy: “One of the most cherished stories in American journalism is also a tenacious media-driven myth,” W. Joseph Campbell writes.

As was often the case with Walter Cronkite, “that’s the way it is” usually wasn’t, as his left-leaning biographer reluctantly admitted a few years ago.

ED MORRISSEY: How Trump Could Spark a New GOP Split – or Maybe a Love Fest. It all depends on whether people will be mature, or will let childish primary antagonisms live on.

INSULARITY COMBINED WITH A SENSE OF ENTITLEMENT WILL DO THAT TO YOU: Academia Is Its Own Worst Enemy.

The campaign for more intellectual diversity in higher education just got an eloquent and influential new champion: John Etchemendy, Stanford University’s provost from 2000 to 2017. In a recent speech to the elite university’s trustees, Etchemendy said that while many on campus perceive higher education to be under siege from right-wing populists, he believes that the greater danger is that academia destroys itself from the inside through its own stifling intellectual orthodoxies. . . .

Over the course of Etchemendy’s career, academia has indeed become more of a monoculture, with the overall ratio of liberal to conservative faculty increasing from 2:1 in 1990 to 5:1 in 2014, and with conservatives virtually without representation at many elite social science and humanities departments (one study found that Democrats outnumber Republicans at top 40 history departments by a more than 33:1 margin). And there is no sign the trend is abating; younger American professors are even more uniformly liberal than the older cohort.

Etchemendy’s speech calls for efforts to bring in more faculty with heterodox views—not as a kind of spoils system for conservatives, but because a greater diversity of viewpoints is likely to increase the rigor of scholarship overall, no matter the viewpoint of the person conducting it.

Plus: “It is telling that Etchemendy chose to deliver this speech once his tenure as provost was over; perhaps he thought that it would generate too much political blowback if he was still Stanford’s number two administrator. Hopefully his fellow academics take note.” Oh, they’ll take note of the fear of blowback, for sure.

STOP THE DEMOCRATS’ WAR ON WOMEN AND NATIVE AMERICANS! Schumer to GOP: Stop promoting Elizabeth Warren as the face of Democrats.

Why is Chuck Schumer such a misogynistic anti-imaginary-diversity reactionary?

ANTISOCIAL MEDIA: Facebook Suspends Christian Homeschool Mom’s Account for Citing the Bible. She should sue them for religious discrimination. Bake that cake, Zuckerberg!

KURT SCHLICHTER: From Here To The Left’s Fascist, Maybe Violent, Endgame.

PRIORITIES: California budget guts middle-class aid, keeps scholarships for illegals.

HMM: Rigged gig? Perez dodges Cuomo three times at DNC chair debate.

TEACH WOMEN NOT TO LIE ABOUT RAPE! Teen charged with lying about being raped by college football players. “Nikki Yovino, 18, of South Setauket, NY, has been charged with second-degree falsely reporting an incident and tampering with or fabricating physical evidence in connection to an incident at a Sacred Heart University football party in October, the Connecticut Post reports. When pressed about inconsistencies in her original statement, Yovino admitted that she made up the rape allegations against the two football players in hopes of gaining sympathy from another man — a prospective boyfriend, according to an arrest warrant affidavit.”

JONATHAN TURLEY: Trump Attacks On Judges Perfectly Presidential:

When President Trump called Senior District Court Judge James Robart “this so-called judge” after the issuance of an order temporarily restraining Trump’s executive order on immigration, the response from all sides of the political spectrum was immediate and alarmed. It was called “bone-chilling” and “authoritarian.” Some even compared Trump to Hitler.

However, it was not only relatively mild for Trump but positively tame in comparison with past conflicts between presidents and judges.

That’s true, as anyone who knows any history should realize.

BLACK BLOC BACKERS HARDEST HIT: Arizona Senate votes to seize assets of those who plan, participate in protests that turn violent.

Related: More than 200 inauguration day protesters indicted for rioting: Prosecutors called out the protesters for utilizing so-called “black bloc” tactics that involve vandalism, violence and destruction.

Protests that “turn” violent are one thing. Violence that was planned from the beginning, on the other hand, is just crime.

DO TELL: Trump foreign policy surprises on the upside: His national security team is performing much better than it is being given credit for. “The brouhahas with the news media that Trump complains about are largely of his own making. But many pundits do seem more concerned about faux pas and political incorrectness rather than actual national security policies. While the administration remains full of the former, the latter are looking much better than could have been expected a few short months ago.”

THE HILL: Poll: Senate Should Confirm Gorsuch.

A plurarity of Americans say the Senate should confirm President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch, who is expected to face vigorous opposition and a likely filibuster from Democrats.

According to data from a Harvard-Harris survey provided exclusively to The Hill, 44 percent say the Senate should confirm Gorsuch. Thirty-two percent say they’re unsure and 25 percent say Gorsuch should not be confirmed.

“Gorsuch is off to an excellent start in his nomination process,” said Mark Penn, the co-director of the Harvard-Harris poll. “A quarter, however, is holding back judgment for now, suggesting televised confirmation hearings could be critical for him and them.”

He should be a slam-dunk, by all appearances.

HEY, ME NEITHER: Trump not planning to watch Oscars.

WHY THE PRESS IS FALLING APART:

So when does the other shoe drop? Who’s going to break the story proving beyond a shadow of a doubt that the president of the United States is so deeply connected to Russian President Vladimir Putin that the White House has become a Muscovite colony in all but name?

Time to use some common sense—it’s not going to happen, there is no story. The narrative that Donald Trump is effectively Putin’s prison wife is an information operation orchestrated by Democratic hands, many of whom served in the Obama administration, sectors of the intelligence community, and much of the American press. The purpose of the campaign is to delegitimize Trump’s presidency by continuing to hit on themes drawn from the narrative that Russia “hacked” the election and stole it away from Clinton.

The narrative is contorted because it’s not journalism. It’s a story that could only make sense in a profoundly corrupted public sphere, one in which, for instance, Graydon Carter is celebrated for speaking truth to power with an editor’s letter critical of Trump in a magazine that has no other ontological ground in the universe except to celebrate power.

Oh, sure, there are regular hints that there’s still more to come on Trump and his staff’s ties to Russia—the big one is about to hit. But the steady sound of drip-drip-drip is the telltale sign of a political campaign, where items are leaked bit by bit to paralyze the target. Journalists, on the other hand, have to get their story out there as quickly, and as fully, as possible because they’re always worried the competition is going to beat them to it.

No, if Trump really was in bed with the Russians, the story would already be out there, and I’m pretty sure it would have had a Wayne Barrett byline.

It’s mostly Fake News, these days.

ASIA PIVOT, MOSCOW EDITION: Russia to Deploy Division on Kuril Islands in 2017.

Those are the disputed islands just north of Japan which the Soviet Union seized from the Empire of Japan in the closing days of World War II.

THIS SEEMS UNWISE: Couple Caught Having Sex On Speeding Motorcycle While Driving Down Busy Highway. Nobody tell Florida Man about this.

HEY, DIVERSITY IS OUR STRENGTH, RIGHT? Iowa, North Carolina Bills Would Require ‘Partisan Balance’ In Faculty Hiring.

THE SAD CAFE: Auto Makers Ask EPA’s Pruitt to Reverse Fuel-Economy, Emissions Decision.

NASA’S BIG REAL ESTATE DEAL: Potentially Habitable Planets.

We’ve been seeking out new worlds for quite a while now. When do we get to boldly go?

February 22, 2017

ACTUALLY, I HOPE IT HURTS A LOT:

Because even a flatworm is smart enough to turn away from pain. And that’s about how smart you “antifa” guys are. At most.

UPDATE: People in the comments are saying this is fake. But this isn’t: More than 200 Inauguration Day protesters indicted for rioting.

FAKE NEWS: Nets Ignore Violent Immigrant Riot in Sweden After Mocking Trump.

PAUL KRUGMAN ON ELECTION NIGHT: “If the question is when markets will recover, a first-pass answer is never.”

Today: “There is no denying the fact that the markets have absolutely been blowing up since the election! In fact this is one of the biggest rallies since the Taft Administration. The DOW is up over 13% and the other markets are also up double digits!”

GEORGE NEUMAYR: Trump Is Beating The Media At Its Own Game: The left’s own politics by shorthand is now being turned against it.

Whenever editors say that they refuse to acknowledge “two sides” on such matters as “marriage equality” or Darwinism or climate change, they are paying homage to Lenin’s devious politics by shorthand. They pay homage to it whenever they substitute their opinions of the news for actual reporting of the news. Even the squabbling among journalists recently over whether or not to suspend “conventional reporting” in Trump’s case, or whether front-page stories should declare his misstatements “lies,” is a tacit acknowledgment of that politics. With Lenin, the Christiane Amanpours have no use for the peskiness of precise responses. Just call Trump a “liar,” their attitude goes, and “everyone will understand everything.”

But that demagogic shorthand only works as long as Republican politicians defer to it. For years journalists opined self-servingly under the guise of objectivity and got away it because Republicans were too afraid to shatter that illusion of objectivity. They permitted the media to serve as the arbiter of what qualifies as “mainstream,” “extremist,” “racist,” and so forth, and made sure to stay within the media-determined parameters of any discussion.

Donald Trump has blown up that absurd arrangement and is beating the media at its own game. He labels reporters in the same way that they label him. He upends their dishonest framing of debates by treating them as what they are, liberal partisans. His exchange last week with April Ryan, a correspondent for the American Urban Radio Network, captured that perfectly. She asked him a loaded question not as a neutral reporter but as a water-carrier for the Congressional Black Caucus. So he treated her that way. “I’ll tell you what, do you want to set up the meeting?” the president said to her, after she asked if he would meet with the CBC. “Do you want to set up the meeting? Are they friends of yours?” Of course, they are friends of hers and she was trying to score a partisan point for them. Had Trump not deconstructed that for the audience, her question might have done him damage. Instead, it fell flat and looked unserious.

Reporters are thrown by a president who questions them as aggressively as they question him. And they resent that he refuses to accept as “facts” what is nothing more than their biased interpretation of the facts.

Well, it makes life harder for bylined operatives.

I’M NOT SURPRISED: Pence makes surprise visit to vandalized Jewish cemetery.

EMERGENCY INFRASTRUCTURE: UK mobile carrier unveils mini-blimps for providing emergency cell coverage. The picture looks more like a tethered balloon than a blimp, but the idea is a good one.

EXCELLENT CHOICE: Dana Loesch To Serve As Major NRA National Spokesperson.