January 27, 2022

MY NEW YORK POST COLUMN: In which I explain who the Democrats should pick.

SO PEOPLE WHO WANT TO BAN THEM ARE TARGETING MARGINALIZED GROUPS: Menthol cigarette use highest among marginalized groups, report finds.

NO. Why the IRS wants you to log in with a video selfie.

RECOMMENDED READING: I just finished “What Next, Chicago?: Notes of a Pissed-Off Native Son” by Matt Rosenberg. On the surface, it details the 2020 riots, strikes, murders and mayhem that so sadly but accurately defines what Chicago has become. More importantly, Rosenberg doesn’t just say “see, this is what Democratic Machine politics brings” but instead asks deeper — and non-partisan — questions about the root causes.

Of course, MSM always calls any such questions “partisan” (or even “racist”) but that’s only because it’s easier than stepping up and answering the question. Available from Amazon, I believe if you buy it by clicking here, Instapundit gets a small bit of income.

On a separate note, IP readers will be very interested to learn more about Post Hill Press, who runs the Bombardier imprint that published Rosenberg’s book. The roster of authors — from Alan Dershowitz to Adam Carolla to Andrew Klavan — is mighty impressive, and (IMHO) represents the best in free thinking, questioning authority, and asking smart questions. We would do well to see publishers like this thrive.

HARD WORK, BUT CHEAPER THAN GOING TO MARS: A meteorite-hunting AI will scout for space rocks buried in polar ice.

ABOUT TIME: We are finally beginning to understand migraines and how to treat them.

Despite migraine being among the most common neurological conditions, affecting around a billion people worldwide, we know incredibly little about what causes them, how to avoid them and how best to treat them.

That is partly because migraines are so complex. They impact people differently, can be unpredictable and affect many more women than men. Migraine research has been dismissed, derided and underfunded. But a handful of dedicated scientists have spent decades trying to make progress. For the first time, they have uncovered a mechanism behind migraines in the brain, and with this knowledge have developed treatments not only to relieve them when they strike, but possibly to stop them occurring. Finally, migraine science is having its moment.

For those lucky enough to be unfamiliar with migraines, they can seem far-fetched. Someone can be fine one minute, then suddenly unable to speak or see.

I got migraines two or three times a week from the ages of around 10 to about 40. CoQ10 seemed to help.

INTRODUCING SOME OF MY FAVORITE NEW WRITERS: I’d Like You to Meet Some Very Important PJers.

WHY DOES THE SAN JOSE COUNTY COUNCIL HATE POOR PEOPLE? Regressive Burden: San Jose City Council Votes to Require Gun Owners to Carry Liability Insurance, Pay an Annual Fee.

LIVE AT 3:30PM EASTERN: ‘Five O’Clock Somewhere’ with Kruiser, VodkaPundit, Special Guest Kira Davis.

BE PREPARED: First Alert SCO5CN Combination Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detector, Battery Operated. #CommissionEarned

CHANGE? Why San Francisco’s School Board Recall May Be One Of 2022’s Most Important Elections. “On February 15, San Francisco’s majority-liberal residents will decide the fate of three far-left school board members who face recall. The outcome of this local election will have national implications, indicating how much Asian Americans, the fastest-growing racial and ethnic group in the nation, are shifting away from the Democrat Party.”

“I WAS TOLD I’D HAVE FLYING CARS IN 2022.” “BEST I CAN DO IS AUTONOMOUS PIGEON HARASSMENT.”

Feral pigeons are responsible for over a billion dollars of economic losses here in the United States every year. They’re especially annoying because the species isn’t native to this country—they were brought over from Europe (where they’re known as rock doves and are still quite annoying) because you can eat them, but enough of the birds escaped and liked it here that there are now stable populations all over the country, being gross.

In addition to carrying diseases (some of which can occasionally infect humans), pigeons are prolific and inconvenient urban poopers, deploying their acidic droppings in places that are exceptionally difficult to clean. Rooftops, as well as ledges and overhangs on building facades, are full of cozy nooks and crannies, and despite some attempts to brute-force the problem by putting metal or plastic spikes on every horizontal surface, there are usually more surfaces (and pigeons) than can be reasonably bespiked.

Researchers at EPFL in Switzerland believe that besting an aerial adversary requires an aerial approach, and so they’ve deployed an autonomous system that can identify roof-invading pigeons and then send a drone over to chase them away.

Well, it’s something, I guess.

THE GREAT CLIMATE FRAUD: China Won’t Disturb Its Citizens’ ‘Normal Life’ to Meet Carbon Goals.

HMM: Change of heart? It may affect thinking and memory skills in middle age.

Subtle changes in the structure and the diastolic function of a person’s heart between early adulthood and middle age may be associated with a decline in thinking and memory skills. The research is published in the January 26, 2022, online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. The diastolic function of the heart is when it rests between beats and the chambers fill with blood. . . .

After adjusting for factors like age, sex and education, researchers found that a greater than average increase from early to middle adulthood in the weight of a person’s left ventricle was associated with lower midlife cognition on most tests.

This study doesn’t overwhelm me, but I hope they’ll look further.

SNITCHES GET RICHES: How an Anonymous Reporting System Made Yale a COVID ‘Surveillance State.’

COLOR ME UNSURPRISED: Marijuana impairs driving more, and for longer, than users think, study finds.

ROGER SIMON: Hell, No, We Shouldn’t Go—to the Olympics.

Evidently, Team USA has been advised to leave their cellphones at home when they travel to China for the Winter Olympic Games in Beijing next month.

In an email from his CAVPAC political action committee, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo writes:

“That Team USA is telling our athletes to use burner phones and to avoid surveillance by the CCP is no surprise to me. That’s exactly what my team and I did when we traveled to China to protect America’s interests. But you have to ask: if our athletes have to use burner phones when visiting a country, then why on earth are we sending them to that country in the first place?”

Good question.

And while we’re at it, why is NBC (and its owner Comcast) broadcasting an event that is, in essence, a propaganda exercise for a country practicing various degrees of genocide against Uyghur Muslims, Falun Gong practitioners, Christians, and other religious minorities, not to mention oppressing almost anyone who questions their totalitarian regime?

Related: ‘Never Again’ Means Standing Up for China’s Uyghur Minority.

KEVIN DOWNEY JR: Sacre Bleu! The Commie Battle For Canada Has Begun. “The hope is making shopping more difficult will push more holdouts to get the jab.”

For the Left, it always comes down to the thrill of deciding who gets what.

WELL, THIS IS THE 21ST CENTURY, YOU KNOW: New tech spurs spaceplane vision: halfway around world in 40 minutes.

NEWS I HOPE YOU CAN’T USE: Some Beta Blockers Tied to Lower Recurrence Risk After Prostatectomy. “Use of nonselective beta-blockers (nsBBs) at the time of radical prostatectomy may reduce the risk of prostate cancer recurrence, according to a Norwegian cohort study. Investigators found that use of nsBBs at the time of prostate cancer surgery was significantly associated with a 36% lower risk of receiving treatment for cancer recurrence, reported Shivanthe Sivanesan, MD, of Oslo University Hospital, and colleagues. They found no such association, however, with the use of selective beta-blockers (sBBs).”

Nonselective beta blockers include propranolol, nadolol, pindolol. Selective beta blockers include Toprol, nebivolol, metoprolol.

EXCLUSIVE: DHS Secretary Had a Disastrous Meeting with Border Patrol Agents. “An agent pressed Mayorkas on how DHS can reconcile saying border security is the main mission for Border Patrol, yet agents are unable to patrol the border due to the policies the Biden administration has in place. Border Patrol agents are being utilized to process the thousands of illegal immigrants.”

IT’S TURTLES IDENTITY POLITICS ALL THE WAY DOWN: As Supreme Court Hears Challenge Against Race-Based College Admissions, Joe Biden Wants Race-Based Supreme Court Nominee.

With one possible exception: ‘Kamala for SCOTUS’ is a distraction Biden wants. Better that than suffer another terrible news cycle.

Nothing like a little Obama-style stray voltage from time to time.

NEW CIVILITY WATCH: Ex-Obama aide unleashes R-rated rant against Kyrsten Sinema for breaking ranks on filibuster.

U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona is no stranger to taking flak from fellow Democrats for bucking the party line — but a former high-level aide to President Barack Obama may have crossed another line.

“I think she’s a c—,” Alyssa Mastromonaco told the “Pod Save America” podcast earlier this month, after Sinema refused to side with other Democrats regarding the filibuster. “That’s what I have to say.”

Mastromonaco chose a fairly large platform for her profanity-laced remarks: According to Chartable, the podcast has enormous reach, and is the seventh-highest news program on Apple Podcasts.

* * * * * * * *

“She talks about the ‘disease of division,’” Mastromonaco said about the senator. “She gave the speech as Joe Biden was on [his] way up to the Hill. So anyway, it’s the s—tiest, grossest, most disrespectful thing she could’ve done. I think she’s a c—. That’s what I have to say.”

The hosts, also ex-Obama staffers, laughed in response, before one asked, “Do we have to beep that?”

“No, because I’m a woman,” Mastromonaco replied. “I’m a woman, OK?”

Then she continued, “It was so many layers of a—holeness, like you know that she played a combative video game before she went down to the Senate floor, and was like, ‘You are a maverick. You are a maverick!’ And b—-, you’re not a maverick. OK? No. You’re trash.”

The conversation then moved to the late Sen. John McCain, also of Arizona, who pundits often referred to as a maverick in the Senate.

“The best part about this take is that there’s no one out there making the case for bipartisanship,” added co-host Daniel Pfeiffer, responding to the original Washington Post piece.

Thus, the perfect definition of bipartisanship: It’s brilliant and thoughtful when a nominally Republican senator forces leftist policies on America; it’s a sign that Washington has failed when a nominal Democrat attempts to keep the left from going over a cliff.

STACEY LENNOX: About Those Free COVID-19 Tests Joe Biden Sent You… “The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) sent citizens from Wuhan all over the world early in the pandemic while restricting their travel within China. Now, two years later, Chinese companies are profiting from the fallout.”

GET IN SHAPE: The Barbell Prescription: Strength Training for Life After 40. #CommissionEarned

RUST NEVER SPOTIFYS: Neil Young Demands Spotify Remove His Music Over ‘False Information About Vaccines.’Neil Young Demands Spotify Remove His Music Over ‘False Information About Vaccines.’

Spotify’s response? Thank you; your terms are acceptable: Spotify Takes Down Neil Young’s Music After His Joe Rogan Ultimatum.

Mr. Young’s record label, Warner Music Group Corp.’s Warner Records, formally requested Spotify remove the music Wednesday.

“We want all the world’s music and audio content to be available to Spotify users. With that comes great responsibility in balancing both safety for listeners and freedom for creators,” a Spotify spokesman said Wednesday. The company has detailed content policies in place and has removed over 20,000 Covid-19-related podcast episodes since the start of the pandemic, he added.

“We regret Neil’s decision to remove his music from Spotify, but hope to welcome him back soon,” he said.

For Spotify, the controversy is a significant test of its big bet on Mr. Rogan, one of podcasting’s most popular and polarizing voices. Spotify struck a deal with Mr. Rogan in 2020 worth more than $100 million, according to people familiar with the matter, bringing his loyal followers and lucrative show exclusively to its service. Mr. Rogan is central to Spotify’s podcast strategy in attracting listeners and ad dollars to its platform and shows.

While the letter has since been removed from Mr. Young’s website, he has been in discussions with his label and Spotify since then, and continued to hold his ground, according to people familiar with the matter.

As I said yesterday, given Young’s negative statements about pretty much all music formats post-LP records, Spotify’s management really seem to be going out of their way to save Young’s superfans from their worst 21st century tendencies.

Young’s picking a fight with Spotify over Joe Rogan seems much more like to get an extra 15 minutes of relevancy rather than a principled stance by the former member of Buffalo Springfield: “The way to deter ultimatums like that is to punish the first person who issues one by locking him out. So that’s what Spotify did, even though Young is right that Rogan is obnoxious for giving anti-vaxxers a platform. Which is ironic, because he’s been no hero about standing up for good science in the past. This is a guy who cut an entire album a few years ago devoted to spooking people about genetically modified foods. Actual title: ‘The Monsanto Years.’”

JOE BIDEN’S RETURN TO DECENCY: Eff-ing Right: How S— Talk Can Save Biden’s Presidency. “The whole encounter — including Doocy’s genial refusal to get all huffy about Biden’s flash of huffiness — was in its own way quite winning. It was also a reminder of how many memorable Biden moments feature casual profanity or bursts of authentic emotion amid the pervasive phoniness of contemporary politics.”

Well, that’s one way to spin it.

Another is: Biden has always been a nasty piece of work who enjoys punching down.

STANDING IN THE SCHOOLHOUSE DOOR: Harvard President Defiant in Admissions Fight.

Students for Fair Admissions, the group mounting the legal challenges, points to Harvard admissions practices that penalized Asian-American students by giving them low marks on such metrics as “likability,” “courage,” and “self-confidence.”

The reason why the Ivy League is so upset with Amy Wax’s “too many Asians” remark isn’t because they disagree with her. It’s because they don’t want people to notice that they agree, and regularly act upon that sentiment.

#RESIST: Woman Sneaks Ivermectin Into Hospital, Saves Husband’s Life.

HAVE YOU SEEN THE SHOULDERS ON THAT GUY? Lia Thomas’ teammates realizing ‘they will never, ever be able to beat this person,’ Penn swimmer’s dad says.

THE DEMAND FOR RACIAL HATE ON CAMPUS FAR EXCEEDS THE SUPPLY, DRAWING IN INFERIOR IMITATIONS: Hate crime hoaxes: Students alleged KKK recruited on campus, vandalized black girl’s door.

OF COURSE THEY DO: Ministry of Truth: China literally changed the ending of Fight Club so the authorities win. “The new Chinese version of Fight Club puts power back into the hands of the police and implies an ideal closure in line with the Chinese state discourse in which the symbiotic relationship between the police and the state is a given.”

This doesn’t bespeak security.

SCENES FROM AN ACTUAL INSURRECTION: CHAZ’s Rapping BLM Warlord Has a New Side Hustle – Fighting Sexual Assault Lawsuits in Seattle.

SEND YOUR KIDS TO COLLEGE, THEY’LL ENJOY SOLITARY CONFINEMENT: ‘He is hungry, isolated, cold’: Parent of Ohio U student sounds alarm on quarantine dorm experience.

BEN SHAPIRO: COVID-19’s Impact of Expressive Individualism. “There will be no normalization for those who have made pandemic paranoia a feature of their identity. That’s because the public health establishment has now successfully cultivated a large group of people who measure their moral value by just how compliant and panicked they remain over COVID-19.”

Read the whole thing.

PJ MEDIA VIP ROUNDUP: Don’t forget that VODKAPUNDIT promo code if you’ve been thinking of joining us.

Victoria Taft: Why Did Joe Biden Build His Hollywood Oval Office Set? An Answer Emerges. “After allowing fake fact-checkers to lie on their behalf about the Potemkin Office, which is as real as Joe’s veneers, photos of the Hollywood set are proliferating on the White House Flickr account.”

Cameron Arcand: These 4 Red States Recovered All the Jobs They Lost During the Pandemic. “Even CNN Business admitted that California and New York had some of the worst recovery numbers in the ratings, with a measly 60% and 70% of jobs recovered.”

Yours Truly: Ranking the Bond Movies Part 004 (Popcorn Thrills). “They keep you entertained for a couple of hours, but the popcorn calories don’t stick. Still, who doesn’t love a perfectly adequate Bond flick?”

COLORADO: Craig, one of Colorado’s last coal towns, grapples with its future as its power plant and mine shut down.

“A power plant job, especially in a rural community like Craig — those are what I call cradle to grave jobs,” said Richard Meisinger, business manager of the 111 chapter of International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers union which represents the bargaining unit at the Craig plant and nearly 4,200 members across Colorado and Wyoming. “People hire on there when they’re young anticipating that they are going to work at that power plant there their entire workable lifespan.”

The same scenario is playing out in other small towns across the U.S. After decades of relying on coal for their workforce, tax base and way of life, the towns face uncertain futures as new state and national legislation forces the retirement of fossil fuels because of the worsening effects of human-caused climate change. Only a few towns have a viable plan to transition to cleaner energy, like one in Wyoming chosen for a Bill Gates-backed nuclear power plant.

The impact spreads beyond the plants workers and is felt by the rest of the community, too. In Craig, much of the infrastructure of the county is supported by the coal plant workers, who make an average of $100,000 a year, compared with a $40,000 average salary across the county.

Now, some workers will retire, while others, like the younger Loyas, must find a new way to support their families, and possibly leave Craig behind.

Plus:

As the coal industry goes, so will nearly half of Moffat County’s gross domestic product, Peterson said. It could affect services like healthcare, fire departments, infrastructure and upkeep for neighborhoods and roadways.

According to Ray Beck, former Moffat County commissioner and mayor of Craig, the county’s biggest source of revenue is property tax. Moffat County’s 2020 assessed value was nearly $430 million with 62% coming from the top 10 taxpayers, all energy-related businesses.

“We can’t recover from that,” Beck said.

Locals have a lot of questions about how “green energy” might someday replace those jobs and revenues, but no answers.

WELL, YES: Mike Pompeo: President Biden, it’s you – not Republicans – who’s bereft of ideas. “Unfortunately, your cheap rhetoric is emblematic of your unwillingness to obtain advice from anyone beyond your handlers. Mr. President, it is you who appears bereft of ideas to solve our nation’s crises. . . . Republicans believe that each life is precious and every person deserves respect, for each is a gift of God. Republicans believe that the free market is the engine of economic growth for America and all the world. True innovation and the unleashing of human potential are never accomplished by dictatorial bureaucrats, who fancy themselves the creators of tomorrow, though they cannot manage the present. Republicans believe that we must preserve our environment. American energy independence is necessary to ensure clean air, clean water and the vibrancy of our heartland and cities, for abundant power is essential to create the jobs and the prosperity necessary to address environmental concerns.”

Plus:

Mr. President, you promised to burnish other nations’ respect for America, but you are the architect of the deadly and calamitous retreat from Afghanistan that has both armed and invigorated our country’s enemies. Republicans are for supporting friends like Israel, while you sit in Vienna with the butchers of Tehran negotiating with theocrats seeking to destroy Jerusalem, the birthplace of our Abrahamic traditions.

American energy independence is lost, for you put Russia and Saudi Arabia in charge, with predictable results. Inflation is rampant, and our economy is in tatters.

Will you change course, sir, or will you preside over the collapse of our principles, our traditions and our civil society?

Wait, I know the answer to this one.

HE SHOULD HAVE KNOWN BETTER WITH THIS ADMINISTRATION: By-the-book Breyer said to be miffed retirement leaked.

Associate Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer is reportedly miffed that his retirement was leaked, a violation of his practice of following protocol by the book, according to longtime court-watchers.

Sources said that he was beginning the standard process of scaling back, with plans to announce at the end of the current term in several months.

“He is a by-the-book stickler for following protocol. You announce your retirement at the end of terms, not in the middle,” one insider told Secrets today.

“He did not plan for this to leak out. He was just beginning the standard process of winding down,” added the source.

Fingers were pointed to the White House, which has been desperate to change news coverage from the president’s bad polls and policy failures, including several promises he failed to deliver to the left wing of his party.

You can always change your mind, Stephen. You haven’t retired yet.

KRUISER’S MORNING BRIEF: Nick Searcy Is On a Mission to Destroy Dems’ Jan. 6 Lies. “Nick joined me on my Kruiser Kabana podcast this week to talk about the movie, offering some additional context to the dark subject matter. These podcast episodes are usually for VIP subscribers only but I have decided to leave it on the other side of the paywall for a couple of weeks to give more people a chance to hear this important version of what went on that day.”

JOE BIDEN RESTORING DIGNITY TO THE US GOVERNMENT: US diplomatic officials forced to undergo anal COVID tests in China.

OH, I DUNNO: Nobody’s Getting Away with Anything, Right Now.

NO ELECTION IS LEGITIMATE UNLESS THE DEMOCRATS WIN; ANY ELECTION IS LEGITIMATE IF REPUBLICANS LOSE: Time for another top Democrat to suggest that the midterms might not be legitimate.

Related: George Korda:

But it’s a big lie to say that this is Trump’s issue alone: A month before the election, Biden was setting himself up if he lost to make similar claims. A Reuters story from Oct. 10, 2020, lays it out: “Biden says ‘chicanery’ at polls is the only way he could lose U.S. election.”

Reuters reported: “Biden encouraged potential voters at a campaign stop in the must-win battleground of Pennsylvania, telling them ‘make sure to vote because the only way we lose this is by the chicanery going on relative to polling places.’ ” He later “clarified” to say he’d accept the results of the election.

A few months earlier, Biden had gone farther. In June 2020 he said in an interview on “The Daily Show with Trevor Noah,” “This president’s going to try to steal this election.” How can you say that you can’t lose except if you’re cheated, but then say you’ll respect the outcome of the crooked election? That can’t be true. They are irreconcilable positions.

It’s easy when the press covers for you.

IT’S ASTOUNDING HOW MUCH DAMAGE BAD LEADERSHIP CAN DO, AND HOW FAST: A Perfect Storm Engulfs Biden Over Economy, Europe, and Asia.

Interest rates and oil prices are rising. High inflation is embedded in the economy, and the Federal Reserve is about to launch a monetary tightening cycle.

Russia shows absolutely no signs of de-escalating in the Ukraine. If anything, it has gotten more aggressive by moving troops into Belarus and ships into the Black Sea, effectively surrounding Ukraine.

Meanwhile, Mr. Biden’s domestic agenda has collapsed, and the very essence of his presidency is hanging by a thread. He has never recovered from the catastrophic Afghanistan withdrawal.

Nor has he recovered from his launch of a radical left big-government socialist domestic policy.

Polls unanimously show the public is simply not buying the product Mr. Biden is selling. He doubled down on his failed woke product last Wednesday, another huge mistake.

Now, in a futile attempt to recoup his failed diplomacy with Russia, Mr. Biden’s Administration is suddenly saber-rattling an increase of American GIs into Eastern Europe under the NATO flag. This after telling the country he would not deploy American troops.

Right now, I am completely unconvinced and uncomfortable with putting another 8,500 Yanks into Eastern Europe.

For one thing, Putin couldn’t care less. He’s got about a couple hundred thousand troops around the area — 8,500 is an ankle bite.

For another thing, President Biden and his team have been so far behind the curve on this Ukraine story that it looks as if they can never catch up. Our own diplomats, intel people and even Defense Department sources, expect Russia to invade Ukraine.

Everything is going swimmingly.

WHY ARE DEMOCRAT-RUN CITIES SUCH CESSPITS OF ANTI-ASIAN VIOLENCE?

SCHOOL DISTRICT ADMITS FAILING TO SUPPORT CHILDREN’S’ IDENTITIES:  School district denies litter boxes for students identifying as ‘furries’.

UH UH. DOES YOUR CONSCIENCE BOTHER YOU, LIZZY?  Cheney slams Gingrich for saying Jan. 6 panel members could be jailed.

COLONIAL EXPLOITATION OF THIRD WORLD RESOURCES IS ONCE AGAIN ACCEPTABLE:  Omicron pushes wealthy countries to recruit nurses from poorer nations.

BY GUM! I THINK THE WORM IS TURNING:  One doctor’s perspective on COVID.

HAVE I MENTIONED MY FACE IS EXTREMELY SHOCKED????   Must-see TV: Mark Levin interview with Peter Schweizer exposes $31 million in CCP money to the Biden family and much more.

I THINK THEY’RE RIGHT:  A New, FEARLESS, Chicagoboyz Prediction!

OF COURSE:  Meritocracy Is Only Discriminatory If You’re A Bigot.

ACTUALLY MY QUESTION IS: WHAT DOES THE JUNTA WANT TO DISTRACT US FROM?  Justice Breyer set to retire?

DE SANTIS IS NOT ALONE:  DeSantis wants election crimes to be prosecuted.

MAYBE. BUT HOW CONCILIATORY IS MITCH?  Remember When Liberal Law Profs Said VP Can’t Cast Tiebreaker On Supreme Court Nominations? I Bet Mitch Does.

BEHOLD! MY SHOCKED FACE:  Video: NYC Rite Aid Closing Its Doors Due to Out-of-Control Shoplifting and Theft.

WHAT DID YOU THINK THE COMMIE CARAVANS WERE FOR?   VIDEO: Govt. Releasing a Lot of Single Adult Migrants Into the U.S..

(Seriously. Go look at who organizes those.)

January 26, 2022

OF COURSE SHE DOES: Councilwoman in neighborhood where two NYPD officers were killed wants to abolish the police.

OPEN THREAD: I know that there is pain.

#RESIST: Seen in Billings, Montana:

Plus, Nazareth, Pennsylvania:

And, location unknown:

The #Resistance is everywhere.

CHANGE: Military space advocate Rep. Jim Cooper to retire from Congress. “Cooper’s decision was expected as his current district in Nashville was redrawn by the state legislature and his seat is likely to be won by a Republican candidate. Cooper has been in office for 32 years.”

NOTHING TO SEE HERE, MOVE ALONG: 8500 US and 40,000 NATO Troops Placed on Standby.

Related:

IT’S THE DEEP SEVENS, ISN’T IT? Wild New Paper Suggests Earth’s Tectonic Activity Has an Unseen Source.

HAHA: So much for “rocking in the free world,” Neil, you big jerk.

MARY KATHARINE HAM: Be Resilient For Your Kids, Not The Other Way Around.

IT DOESN’T HELP KIDS, BUT DEMS WANT IT ANYWAY FOR INDOCTRINATION PURPOSES: “It’s a pre-K study that has many virtues . . . and it says kids who were assigned to the pre-K condition actually did worse than kids who were not.”

#AB5 UPDATE: San Diego lawmaker Lorena Gonzalez used false data to peddle her disastrous AB 5 law.

Eventually, we did find what we were looking for. It turns out that in 2012, a report issued by an Obama Administration commission headed by Joe Biden stated that the nation, not California alone, loses $7 billion because contractors don’t pay payroll taxes—not annually, but rather over a 10-year period. Their report covered all people who provide contracting services, not just those in rideshare and high-tech.”

Lewin and his team then analyzed numbers to determine the actual potential loss to the state of California annually due to independent contracting.

The loss is closer to zero, he said. In fact, in the rideshare and delivery sector alone, the state would actually gain about $111 million annually from the independent contractor arrangement relative to the employment arrangement, they found.

“That supposed $7 billion putative annual revenue loss in California due to independent contractors has no basis in fact or in empirical evidence whatsoever,” affirmed Lewin.

The $7 billion estimate continues to be promoted to this day, not just in California, but nationally.

Those numbers were just a pre-COVID modified limited hangout that did its job — to further wreck California’s economy, and possibly serve as a dry run for a similarly disastrous Federal version.

OUT ON A LIMB: Meat Loaf blamed China for COVID, revealed he couldn’t sing months before death.

Serious, no kidding around question: Where does the New York Post’s Natalie O’Neill think that COVID came from?

TOP SELLER: New Balance Men’s 510 V5 Trail Running Shoe. #CommissionEarned (Bumped)

UNDER TRUMP WE WERE A NET OIL EXPORTER: Russian crude exports to US highlight risks to Ukraine talks for Biden.

Shipments of Russian crude to the US in 2021 averaged 202,000 b/d, the highest in 11 years, according to data from S&P Global Platts trade-flow analytics tool cFlow. Most of these imports consist of Russian export grades, such as Urals, ESPO Blend and Varandey.

Overall Russian crude and product shipments accounted for 11% of total US imports between January and October 2021, according to data from the US Energy Information Administration. Imports of Russian crude and products averaged 704,300 b/d in this period, EIA data showed. The US is now importing higher volumes from Russia than it is from key ally Saudi Arabia. . . .

The growing importance of Russia’s crude to US refiners underscores the challenge facing US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in negotiations with his counterpart Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, set to resume next month, as the two sides attempt to resolve tensions over the buildup of Russian troops on the Ukrainian border, as well as Moscow’s requests for security guarantees from NATO.

Everything is going swimmingly.

IT’S A BIG COUNTRY: Survey Says: Americans Want Big Range from EVs. “It seems Americans want more EV range than anyone else in the world. A lot more. Generally speaking, consumers in the States expect the driving range of a fully charged BEV to be north of 500 miles, while people in places like China and Japan are content with a range of half that amount. The quick-minded in our audience will point to the massive amount of land which comprises America, meaning our driving distances are often much longer on average than they are for folks living in countries on the Pacific Rim.”

Americans want enough range to be able to drive all day. 500 is a minimum for that.

Plus: “Other interesting results to parse from this survey? Americans seem to abhor the idea of a vehicle subscription service, at least compared to drivers in China and India. Nearly 4 out of 5 respondents in those countries cotton to the idea, compared to less than a third of those surveyed in America. In a stat that will surprise no one, personal vehicles are far and away the preferred mode of transportation in this country, compared to about 50 percent in most of Asia and a surprisingly low 67 percent in Germany.”

I’VE SEEN THE LOCKDOWNS AND THE DAMAGE DONE: Only Four States Have Regained All the Jobs Lost Since the Pandemic. They’re All Run By Republicans.

THE FDA’S COVID TRACK RECORD HAS BEEN DREADFUL: The FDA is wrong to pull life-saving COVID-19 antibody treatments.

SATIRE (I THINK): Biden’s Supreme Court Pick Sexually Assaulted Me 25 Years Ago.

NOW WE KNOW WHAT ULTIMATELY HAPPENED TO THE BRADY BUNCH’S ASTROTURF BACKYARD: Behold the deeply unsettling creep factor of this “luxury bunker” in Las Vegas that’s located 26 feet below ground but is made to look as if it’s outside.

I’M SAD TO REPORT THAT I OWN NO BELT-FED WEAPONS: Mandatory Safety Recall of All FN M249S Rifles.

Please do not mock me in my shame.

COLORADO: Parents at Aspen council meeting speak out en mass against mask mandate for children.

While people party unmasked in packed bars and eat and drink in restaurants throughout Pitkin County and at the ski resorts, hundreds of children are forced to wear face coverings all day long in school and it’s impeding their education, eroding their mental health and creating fear of authority.

That’s according to two dozen parents who spoke for an hour during public comment at Aspen City Council’s meeting on Tuesday, urging elected officials to convince their colleagues on Pitkin County’s board of health to lift the mask mandate in public schools and child care facilities.

Julia DeBacker, a parent of six children in Aspen, said two years of forcing them to wear a mask has led them to be socially incompetent, fearful, full of anxiety and untrusting of authority.

Sense broke out here in southern Colorado over a year ago, but Aspen (and Pitkin County) are deep blue.

ATHENA THORNE: I’ve Learned Some Wild Stuff Since I Came to PJ Media.

DON’T GET COCKY: Red wave alert for Senate Democrats.

The race-by-race analysis hasn’t kept up with the deteriorating macro-political reality for Democrats. At the beginning of the cycle, Senate Democrats looked like they would benefit from a favorable Senate map, not defending a single state that Trump carried in 2020. But with Biden’s downturn, the swing states that the president carried narrowly (Arizona, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin) now look like tough territory for the party in power. Meanwhile, Republican-leaning states like Florida, North Carolina, and Ohio, which once looked competitive, now look like longer shots—even with a solid Democratic recruit in Florida, the presence of a Trump-endorsed candidate in North Carolina, and an underwhelming Republican field in Ohio. At the same time, Democratic-leaning Colorado and New Hampshire could get competitive, even without popular Gov. Chris Sununu running in the former and with a muddled GOP field in the latter.

Outside of Sununu’s decision to pass on the Senate race, most recent developments have played to Senate Republicans’ advantage. Scandal-plagued, Trump-endorsed Sean Parnell dropped out of the Pennsylvania race, allowing for a more mainstream hedge fund co-CEO (David McCormick) and a celebrity doctor (Mehmet Oz) to fill the vacuum. The Democratic primary field has gotten pulled so far to the left in Wisconsin that even vulnerable Sen. Ron Johnson has a clear path for a third term. Republicans have released internal polling showing their challengers are already leading in Nevada and Georgia; even older Democratic surveys underscore the precarious predicament for Sens. Raphael Warnock and Catherine Cortez Masto.

Meanwhile, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s decision to put all senators on the record to roll back the legislative filibuster—in a failed attempt to pass a voting-reform package—only gives Republican challengers fodder to argue that even the swing-state Democratic senators (except Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema) are doing the bidding of the progressive base.

Two real weak spots are Arizona and Georgia. I bet the GOP in those states could use some volunteers.

HMM: Strongest evidence yet that MS is caused by Epstein-Barr virus.

STACEY LENNOX: Military Whistleblowers May Blow Up the COVID Vaccine Narrative.

FASTER, PLEASE: Stem cell discoveries hold potential to improve cancer treatment.

FUNNY, BUT NOT FUNNY:

EVERYTHING IS SEEMINGLY SPINNING OUT OF CONTROL: U.S. records most unprovoked shark attacks in 2021.

J CHRISTIAN ADAMS: DeSantis Aims to Fix Failure to Prosecute Florida Election Crimes. “We now have hard data from Florida that shows serious potential election crimes have been ignored by both county and federal prosecutors in the Sunshine State.”

SO NO BOOSTERS, THEN? Vaccination plus infection creates ‘super immunity’ against COVID-19, study finds.

NO, BECAUSE THEY’RE NOT GRIFTERS CATERING TO WELL-OFF WHITE PEOPLE: “Do they really believe that the Black voters who formed the base of the Democratic Party think like Ibram X. Kendi, or the leaders of BLM? Are they crazy?”

PRIVACY: Google Just Gave You the Best Reason Yet to Finally Quit Using Chrome.

Google is introducing an alternative [to cookies] it calls Topics. The idea is that Chrome will look at your browsing activity and identify up to five topics that it thinks you’re interested in. When you visit a website, Chrome will show it three of those topics, with the idea that the site will then show you an ad that matches your interest.

Google says that Chrome will allow users to view the Topics they are associated with, and give them the ability to delete them. Google isn’t asking users if they’d like to be part of Topics, it’s just leveraging the fact that it owns Chrome in order to force users to be a part and then giving them a way to opt out if they want. That’s great, except almost no one is ever going to do that. Google knows that.

“At root is Google’s insistence on sharing information about people’s interests and behaviors with advertisers, trackers and others on the web that are hostile to privacy,” Peter Snyder, who is Brave’s director of privacy, said in a statement. “These groups have no business–and no right–to learn such sensitive information about you.”

Ultimately, that change in the way Google is looking at Chrome–that it isn’t a tool that serves its users, but is a tool that serves up users to advertisers, albeit in a slightly more privacy protective way–is a bad sign. It’s also the best reason to finally ditch it altogether.

I’m usually happy using either Brave or Safari.

CHANGE: Justice Stephen Breyer to Retire. Well, that should keep things interesting.

UPDATE: Heh.

WHAT COULD POSSIBLY GO WRONG? Biden to ‘Expedite’ Bringing More Afghan Refugees to US.

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