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IN THE MAIL: From Mollie Ziegler Hemingway, Trump vs. the Media (Encounter Broadsides).

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GOOD: Russia’s Oil Cuts Are About To Get Harder.

No petrostate is excited about voluntarily constraining their production, but those limits can often be useful if they help push oil prices up. OPEC and a collection of eleven other oil producing nations agreed last November to collectively reduce their output through the first six months of this year, and Russia played a big role by agreeing to join those cuts. However, as the end of that first cut looms large and its participants begin to discuss extending that strategy through the end of the year, Moscow’s ability—or maybe more accurately its willingness—to play ball is going to be tested. That’s because, as Bloomberg reports, the seasonal vagaries of Russian oil production make it easier to cut supplies in the first half of the year than in the second. . . .

In other words, Russian output is going to surge in the second half of this year, which means any supply limitations it agrees to will bite harder.

The Saudis remain the lynchpin of this agreement, but Riyadh knows how important Moscow is to the plan, whose intent is to reduce the global glut of crude. Saudi energy minister Khalid Al-Falih told Bloomberg that petrostates are working towards a consensus, but acknowledged that “we still need to talk to all countries…a very important country to talk to, of course, is Russia, the biggest non-OPEC exporter.”

The stakes are high for these producers—if they don’t agree to continue their production cuts, analysts believe the price of oil could drop back down to $40 or below.

That would be terrible. Remember when Barack Obama said we couldn’t drill our way out of our energy problems?

IN THE MAIL: From Victor Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning.

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WHITE MALE STALKERS OF MEDIA PATRIARCHY DARE QUESTION CHELSEA CLINTON!

I’m so old, I remember when the left chastised white male patriarchal stalkers because they supported a Clinton woman.

And Chelsea is even less ready for her close-up than Norma Desmond Hillary Clinton.

Click to watch.

IN THE MAIL: From blogger John Hawkins, 101 Things All Young Adults Should Know.

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IN THE MAIL: From Michael J. Knowles, Reasons to Vote for Democrats: A Comprehensive Guide.

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I’M OLD ENOUGH TO REMEMBER WHEN PRESIDENT OBAMA TOLD US WE COULDN’T DRILL OUR WAY OUT OF OUR ENERGY PROBLEMS: US Shale Grows Stronger.

Rigs aren’t a perfect metric for measuring the health of the oil industry. When oil prices were high, companies were expansive in their shale ambitions and the rig count ballooned accordingly. Following the crude price collapse, those same firms shut down their least-productive and least-profitable wells, leaving behind the gushers and the real money-makers. While the rig count fell from more than 1,600 down below 400, U.S. oil production dipped just 200,000 barrels per day over that time period.

That said, it’s fair to say that the rig count today, coming off the back of a bearish time in the oil market, is a more accurate measure of how well the U.S. shale industry is doing. The fact, then, that it added 11 rigs in the past week is confirmation of something we’ve been watching carefully in recent months: Shale is booming once again, and the U.S. energy outlook is looking awfully bright.

Good!

PAST PERFORMANCE IS NO GUARANTEE OF FUTURE RESULTS:

Some of the biggest blows to the progressive cause in the past year have often been due to the votes of white men. If white men were not allowed to vote, it is unlikely that the United Kingdom would be leaving the European Union, it is unlikely that Donald Trump would now be the President of the United States, and it is unlikely that the Democratic Alliance would now be governing four of South Africa’s biggest cities.

Could It Be Time To Deny White Men The Franchise?, the Huffington Post yesterday.

I’m old enough to remember when the Huffington Post was angry at white men because they were voting for Hillary.

Why, it’s like the white man is the Jew of Liberal Fascism, to coin a phrase.

Related: The ‘Toxic Masculinity’ Trend Blames Boys For Being Born Male.

SNOWFALLS ARE NOW JUST A THING OF THE PAST: Michael Mann Adjusts the Climate “Turning Point” Out to 2020.

I’m so old, I can remember in January of 2009, when NASA’s climate guru Jim Hansen said that Obama had only four years to save the earth – and 1989, when the UN issued a 10-year global warming tipping point.

(Classical reference in headline.)

JOHN MCGINNIS: Why Many Universities Make Free Speech a Low Priority.

Three reasons combine to make actual protection of free speech a low priority on colleges campuses. The first is the tendency to treat students as simple consumers rather than as participants in the university community with duties that are no less important than professors. Administrators worry that cracking down on the students that disrupt talks may get their university a bad reputation for toughness that may discourage applicants and lower their rankings. To be sure, there are a few universities that cultivate a reputation for free inquiry, like the gloriously tough-minded University of Chicago. But counter programming has always focused on niche markets.

Second, administrators’ other most important constituency—the faculty—generally has no passion for protecting talks by the right because they are so overwhelmingly on the left. Of course, there are a few honorable liberals who are concerned, but for many academics the kind of people who are prevented from speaking are exactly those with whom they would not like to be associated. It is important to remember that a faculty behaves in many ways like a social club, and these speakers are not in their view clubbable.

Finally, it is notable that most of the recent disruptions concerned race. Heather spoke in part about policing in black communities and while the topic of Charles Murray’s talk at Middlebury was problems of working class whites, he was being attacked for his discussion of race in his decades old book, The Bell Curve. Nothing is more important to the administrators of most colleges today than diversity and thus avoiding discipline with a disproportionate effect on minorities would naturally have a higher priority than protecting free speech.

Some might argue that we should not worry too much about these high profile disruptions, because they are relatively few in number. But they have a deterrent effect—on the willingness to invite speakers who challenge received wisdom on campus, the willingness of such speakers to endure disruption and even violence, and perhaps most importantly the willingness of students and faculty on campus to consider departures from left-liberal orthodoxy, particularly when it touches on the matter of race. The resulting chill makes it clear that for free inquiry on many campuses, winter has already arrived.

Schools that do not protect free speech should be ineligible for federal aid money. Groups that interfere with free speech should be criminally prosecuted under 18 U.S.C. 241, and civilly sued under 42 U.S.C. 1985.

GUNS OF AUGUST, VOL. 2: The Balkans Will Be America and Russia’s Next (Virtual) Battlefield.

Russia has meddled extensively in Europe, and Moscow’s attitude toward the United States has become “explicitly belligerent.” That said, Putin has limited opportunities for further provoking the West. That makes the Balkans a more likely target for Russian interference.

Ukraine is an active and debilitating conflict, but it is, in some ways, a frozen one. Putin has failed to live up to his obligations under the Minsk Agreement, and there is scant prospect that the 2015 deal, often called Minsk II, will bring peace. Certainly it doesn’t preclude more war.

At present, however, Minsk II is all that is on the table. Meanwhile, the United States and the Europeans have clearly signaled that, while the sanctions on Russia tied to implementation of the agreement will be reviewed periodically, the near-term prospects for sanctions relief are nil.

At the same time, U.S. officials have signaled continuing support for Ukraine. In February, Trump told a prominent Ukrainian parliamentarian that the United States wouldn’t push for lifting sanctions anytime soon. Only a week later, Trump included a statement of support for Ukraine in a letter to the Lithuanian president. More recently, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has made similar pledges. A recent survey of experts concluded that, “two months into his presidency . . . the Trump administration [is] talking tough and taking diplomatic positions akin to those of his predecessor Barack Obama.”

These developments leave little space for the Kremlin to ratchet up its antics in Ukraine without further antagonizing both the Europeans and the Americans.

Read the whole thing, and remember that even the New York Times seems to have (quietly) dropped the Trump-is-Putin’s-stooge meme.

VIDEO: SECURITY DRAGS SCREAMING UNITED AIRLINES PASSENGER OFF OVERBOOKED FLIGHT — LITERALLY:

Bridges said the man became “very upset” and said that he was a doctor who needed to see patients at a hospital in the morning. The manager told him that security would be called if he did not leave willingly, Bridges said, and the man said he was calling his lawyer. One security official came and spoke with him, and then another security officer came when he still refused. Then, she said, a third security official came on the plane and threw the passenger against the armrest before dragging him out of the plane.

I’m so old, I remember when United called themselves the Friendly Skies. By the way, note all of the passengers who pulled out their cell phones and started recording the moment the passenger began screaming; a pack, not a herd, to coin a phrase.

NOBODY HATES THEIR CUSTOMERS LIKE OLD MEDIA: ‘Meet the Press’ Debates If Hillary Lost Because of the Country’s ‘Misogyny.’

I’m so old, I can remember the DNC-MSM blamed their losses on racism instead.

 

HOLDING STUDENTS ACCOUNTABLE FOR CAMPUS FASCISM: Claremont McKenna statement on the shutting down of Heather Mac Donald’s talk.

My letter would have been a bit more blunt, along these lines: “You know the three years you spent as statistician for the Chess Club so that you could get into a good school? You know all the sweating over your personal essay? Remember all the hours in the test-prep class? Block a speaker from speaking on campus and you can flush all of that, because you’ll be expelled faster than you can say ‘but I was wait-listed at Harvard!'”

ANDREW MCCARTHY: A Watergate-style Scandal.

In general, it is the FBI that conducts investigations that bear on American citizens suspected of committing crimes or of acting as agents of foreign powers. In the matter of alleged Russian meddling, the investigative camp also includes the CIA and the NSA. All three agencies conducted a probe and issued a joint report in January. That was after Obama, despite having previously acknowledged that the Russian activity was inconsequential, suddenly made a great show of ordering an inquiry and issuing sanctions.

Consequently, if unmasking was relevant to the Russia investigation, it would have been done by those three agencies. And if it had been critical to know the identities of Americans caught up in other foreign intelligence efforts, the agencies that collect the information and conduct investigations would have unmasked it. Because they are the agencies that collect and refine intelligence “products” for the rest of the “intelligence community,” they are responsible for any unmasking; and they do it under “minimization” standards that FBI Director James Comey, in recent congressional testimony, described as “obsessive” in their determination to protect the identities and privacy of Americans.

Understand: There would have been no intelligence need for Susan Rice to ask for identities to be unmasked. If there had been a real need to reveal the identities — an intelligence need based on American interests — the unmasking would have been done by the investigating agencies.

The national-security adviser is not an investigator. She is a White House staffer. The president’s staff is a consumer of intelligence, not a generator or collector of it. If Susan Rice was unmasking Americans, it was not to fulfill an intelligence need based on American interests; it was to fulfill a political desire based on Democratic-party interests.

I’m so old I can remember when the Obama Administration was “amazingly scandal-free.”

MEGAN MCARDLE: The Pences’ Prophylactic Approach to Infidelity.

Eventually Pence’s critics seemed to settle on two reasonable-sounding arguments: that his rule against one-on-one dining with females other than his wife would structurally disadvantage women in his office political network and that his rules for himself were actually sexist demands on his wife, requiring Karen Pence to give up her own career and act as a chaperone.

On that second point, I can say only that I remember when it was the height of bad taste to have any opinion at all about what went on in someone else’s marriage — for example, whether Hillary Clinton or Huma Abedin should have divorced their husbands for their sexual indiscretions. Back then, women of Karen Pence’s age were presumed to be adults, fully competent to decide what they were willing to endure in the course of their marriage. They were even entitled to do so without the unsolicited advice of several million unlicensed freelance marriage counselors. Has that edict now been rescinded? Or did it only ever apply to the spouses of Democratic politicians?

The other objection is more serious. Having once worked at a place where a lot of client bonding went on at strip clubs — outings at which I would have felt unwelcome, to say the least — I am fully cognizant of how these sorts of structural barriers can hamper a career. “If Pence won’t eat with a woman alone, how could a woman be Chief of Staff, or lawyer, campaign manager …” asked Mother Jones editor Clara Jeffery on Twitter. “Would Pence dine with Ivanka? Or KellyAnne? Or are they too relegated to second class citizens … I don’t know/care if Pences have weird hangups. I do care if women are being denied jobs and opportunities, and that some normalize this. Has Pence in his career had a woman high up in any campaign, administration, private practice, radio show or think-tank?”

These are reasonable questions. The thing is, they have answers. And those answers seem to include a fair number of female staffers doing things other than fetching coffee. Who do not necessarily think that Pence’s rules are holding them back.

The important thing was to have an opportunity for Republicans Are Mean To Women!! shrieking, in the hopes that the majority of white women who voted from Trump can be lured back.

VICTOR DAVIS HANSON: What Is the Alt-Left?

The Obama victory of 2008 had a profound effect on the Democratic Party, suggesting that the “power” of getting elected twice gave “truth” to Obama’s polarizing brand of organizing groups based on ethnic and racially based grievances, in concert against a supposedly fading and bigoted establishment. (This axiom is in need of some postmodern revisionism after the defeat of Hillary Clinton and the loss of most governorships, state legislatures, the Congress, the presidency and the Supreme Court.)

The Alt-Left largely dismisses the old liberal idea of 1960s Civil Rights. Liberals once promoted integration and the goal of an American melting pot empowered by the time-honored traditions of racially blind integration, assimilation, and intermarriage. The liberal goal once was a common American culture and experience where race became subsidiary. Yet we hear little from liberals any more about non-discrimination and integration. Instead, preference, diversity, and segregated safe spaces become the new discriminatory and reparatory agendas.

The Alt-Left also believes that racial, ethnic, sexual, and religious identity is essential not incidental to character—as evidenced from the profound by the recent racialist statements of would-be candidates to head the DNC, to the ridiculous, as the careerist-driven and invented identities of a Sen. Elizabeth Warren or Ward Churchill or former white/black activists such as Rachel Dolezal and Shaun King attest.

Blatant appeals to racial chauvinism such as those of La Raza (“The Race,” a phraseology popularized in Franco’s Spain in imitation of Hitler’s Volk) or “Black Lives Matter” (that went to great lengths to reject counter ecumenical arguments that “All Lives Matter”) are not just tolerated as useful political props, but institutionalized by the Alt Left to the degree that the Obama Justice Department used fines collected from financial institutions to redistribute to such Alt-Left radical identity political groups.

Another tenet is the age-old left wing idea that the noble ends of “fairness”—equality of result, and government mandated redistribution—justify almost any means in obtaining them. . . . The Alt-Left also does not really believe in free speech, at least as it was calibrated by the New Left of the 1960s that mandated “free speech” zones on campus, wrote academic handbooks outlining the need for protected expression, such as the Yale University’s highly regarded Woodward Report, or, in hippie fashion, equated free speech with advocacy for obscenity and pornography. Reading Mark Twain is hurtful and should be banned, screaming “F—k you to a Yale professor’s face is free speech and to be encouraged.

I remember describing the Critical Legal Studies movement to a judge when I was in law school. “Crap,” he said. “I thought that shit died with Marcuse.”

ALWAYS BACKUP YOUR DATA: Jonah Goldberg’s laptop has seconds to live as he kicks off his latest G-File:

Dear Reader (particularly any of you women who want to have dinner with me alone, but can’t),

Turn that frown upside down!

Some of you may have noticed that I’ve been in a bit of a funk of late, what with all of the gloominess, snark, and unexplained blood spatters and splatters on my glasses, clothes, car, etc.

Just last week, in this space, while mentioning my dour mood, I asked, “Hey, what’s the emoji for metaphysical dyspepsia and spirit-grinding weltschmerz?”

A bunch of people sent in suggestions, but none really hit the mark. So, the Universe decided to create one for me.

To summarize briefly, last week I was in NYC trying to salvage a little bit of Spring Break for my kid in the wake of all our plans blowing up on account of needing to go to Alaska for my mother-in-law’s funeral. While in the city, I met with the lovely (and understanding and patient and awesome) editor of the book I’m still working on. She needed to know when the final chapters were coming. I said in the next week or so. “I have about 25,000–30,000 words on my computer,” I told her. “I just need to organize it and write a couple thousand more.”

And this is when the Universe saw an opening.

Sensitive readers triggered by past memories of their own hard drive failures and/or accidentally pouring liquids into laptops are warned about reading onward. Though it could be worse, I suppose. As James Lileks once noted after one of his backup sessions, “I remember Anthony Burgess telling a story in an interview: he had finished a book and was heading off to the post office to mail it to his publisher, and a scooter sped by – the fellow on the back grabbed his satchel and they sped off through the Roman traffic. You might doubt the story, since it contains the phrase ‘sped off through the Roman traffic,’ but a scooter can fit between the cars. That was the only copy of his book. So he went home and wrote it again.”

QUESTION ASKED: Why Is the Democratic National Committee “Embattled”?

I’m so old, I can remember when the DNC-MSM’s standard mantra was that it was the GOP that was on the verge of imploding.

WHY DOES NBC’S CHRIS MATTHEWS HATE HIS A FORMER NBC EMPLOYEE SO MUCH? Chris Matthews Compares the Trump Family to Saddam Hussein’s.

I’m so old, I can remember when the left thought Saddam was just a warm fuzzy guy.

LOSING IT: Schumer goes off on Trump supporter at NYC restaurant, witness says.

“They are a highly respected couple, and Schumer made a scene, yelling, ‘She voted for Trump!’ The Califanos left the restaurant, but Schumer followed them outside.” On the sidewalk, Schumer carried on with his fantastical filibuster: “ ‘How could you vote for Trump? He’s a liar!’ He kept repeating, ‘He’s a liar!’ ”

Hilary confirmed the confrontation, telling Page Six, “Sen. Schumer was really rude . . . He’s our senator, and I don’t really like him. Yes, I voted for Trump. Schumer joined us outside and he told me Trump was a liar. I should have told him that Hillary Clinton was a liar, but I was so surprised I didn’t say anything.”

Joe Califano was my boss back at Dewey Ballantine. I’m glad to hear he’s doing well, though the Joe I remember probably wouldn’t have let some punk Senator yell at his wife. And good for Hilary.

But this is pretty much proof that Trump is living rent-free in the heads of the Democratic leadership. His victory really did cause a party-wide nervous breakdown.

UPDATE: From the comments: “Clearly this shows that the Senator from New York may be losing his ability to direct the affairs of state!”

Plus: “People who are confident do not do that in public.” True.

VICTOR DAVIS HANSON: The Russian Farce. “Remember when Obama and Hillary cozied up to Putin? And recall when the media rejoiced at surveillance leaks about Team Trump?”

And:

The Obama administration came up with a reset–soft-glove approach to Vladimir’s Russia, characterized by Secretary Hillary Clinton’s heralded pushing of the red plastic button on March 6, 2009, in Geneva. Reset was couched in overt criticism of George W. Bush, who had supposedly alienated Putin by reacting too harshly (like a typical cowboy) to Russia’s aggression in Georgia.

Over the next few years, the reset policy consisted of, among other things, backtracking on previously agreed-on missile-defense plans in Eastern Europe. In the second presidential debate of 2012, Obama portrayed Romney as being too tough on Russia, to the point of delusion:

A few months ago when you were asked what’s the biggest geopolitical threat facing America, you said Russia, not al-Qaeda. You said Russia. In the 1980s, they’re now calling to ask for their foreign policy back because, you know, the Cold War’s been over for 20 years.

The Obama administration invited Russia into the Middle East for the first time in nearly a half-century to help Obama back off from his own redline threats to attack Syria if evidence of WMD usage appeared. Moreover, after the Crimea and eastern Ukraine aggressions, the perception in most of the Western world was that the U.S. was not sufficiently tough with Putin, largely because of its commitment to a prior (though failed) outreach.

So what ended this one-sided reset in 2016?

The estrangement certainly did not coincide entirely with Putin’s aggressions on Russia’s borders. Nor were Democrats inordinately angry with Putin when he bombed non-al-Qaeda Syrian resistance fighters.

Rather, Democrats’ split with Putin grew from the perception that hackers had easily entered the porous e-mail account of Hillary Clinton’s campaign guru John Podesta and released his messages to WikiLeaks. This led to general embarrassment for Hillary and the Democrats — and they floated the theory that WikiLeaks and Julian Assange were taking orders from Putin or at least operating with the encouragement of the Kremlin’s intelligence services.

Read the whole thing.

NBC’S MATT LAUER HOPES RUSSIA TIES WILL ‘MORTALLY WOUND’ THE PRESIDENCY OF FORMER NBC EMPLOYEE DONALD TRUMP (video).

I’m so old, I can remember when Rush Limbaugh was excoriated by the left for hoping a president would fail.

GOOD: Saudis Are the Oil Market’s Biggest Losers.

The last few years have been difficult for anyone in the business of selling oil, as prices tumbled from over $110 per barrel to a nadir of just $27, before rebounding to the middle ground they reside in today, at roughly $50 per barrel. Bargain crude has forced state producers like Russia or OPEC’s members to cut budgets in an attempt to stop the bleeding, and it’s forced many private firms—especially those operating in relatively high areas like shale—out of business.

But no supplier has been harder hit by the collapse of oil prices than Saudi Arabia. Riyadh has had to dip into its sovereign wealth fund to help cover the budget deficit bargain crude has brought about, and it’s also had to do the heavy lifting for the production cut plan OPEC and 11 other petrostates agreed to adhere to during the first six months of this year. That combination—lower production and lower prices—has been nothing less than vicious to the Saudis. . . .

Perhaps it’s not surprising that Riyadh would be the one most unduly affected by cheap crude. After all, the Saudis are and will remain for the foreseeable future the world’s biggest oil power. But the kingdom’s decision to agree to production cuts—and to shoulder the heaviest burden of those cuts, as well—is having something of a self defeating effect. As prices rise, so too do the prospects of struggling shale producers, which means that the Saudis are effectively giving valuable market share to their American competitors.

I’m so old I remember when Barack Obama mocked Sarah Palin by saying that we couldn’t drill our way out of our energy problems.

Related: Canada’s Oil Sands Looking Like A Smart Bet.

REPORT: Koch Network Is Spending Millions to Stop GOP Health Care Bill.

I’m so old I can remember when the Koch brothers were heading up a shady network of rich women-hating racists to deny Hillary Clinton the White House.

SVERIGE GETTING SERIOUS: Sweden preparing nuclear fallout bunkers across the country amid fear of Russian war.

A system of 65,000 bunkers was established in the Cold War to protect the population from nuclear war with the Soviet Union.

According to MSB, the bunkers currently protect against blast and radiation as well as chemical or germ warfare.

With a distinctive logo, they can easily be located by civilians seeking shelter.

But with fears growing over threat posed by Vladimir Putin and his resurgent Russia they are being reviewed to make sure they are ready.

I’m old enough to remember when Sweden took its policy of armed neutrality seriously all the time.

LEGENDARY NEW YORK DAILY NEWS COLUMNIST JIMMY BRESLIN DEAD AT 88. In his introduction to his mid-‘70s anthology on the New Journalism, Tom Wolfe credited Breslin as being a key player in that form’s early days, when Breslin stumbled upon the opinion columnists’ equivalent of the discovery of fire:

The Herald Tribune hired Breslin to do a “bright” local column to help offset some of the heavy lumber on the editorial page, paralyzing snoremongers like Walter Lippmann and Joseph Alsop. Newspaper columns had become a classic illustration of the theory that organizations tend to promote people up to their levels of incompetence. The usual practice was to give a man a column as a reward for outstanding service as a reporter. That way they could lose a good reporter and gain a bad writer. The archetypical newspaper columnist was Lippmann. For 35 years Lippmann seemed to do nothing more than ingest the Times every morning, turn it over in his ponderous cud for a few days, and then methodically egest it in the form of a drop of mush on the foreheads of several hundred thousand readers of other newspapers in the days thereafter. The only form of reporting that I remember Lippmann going for was the occasional red-carpet visit to a head of state, during which he had the opportunity of sitting on braided chairs in wainscotted offices and swallowing the exalted one’s official lies in person instead of reading them in the Times. I don’t mean to single out Lippmann, however. He was only doing what was expected of him . . . [ellipses in original — Ed.]

In any case, Breslin made a revolutionary discovery. He made the discovery that it was feasible for a columnist to leave the building, go outside and do reporting on his own, actual legwork. Breslin would go up to the city editor and ask what stories and assignments were coming up, choose one, go out, leave the building, cover the story as a reporter, and write about it in his column. If the story were big enough, his column would start on page one instead of inside. As obvious as this system may sound, it was unheard of among newspaper columnists, whether local or national. If possible, local columnists are even more pathetic. They usually start out full of juice, sounding like terrific boulevardiers and raconteurs, retailing in print all the marvelous mots and anecdotes they have been dribbling away over lunch for the past few years. After eight or ten weeks, however, they start to dry up. You can see the poor bastards floundering and gasping. They’re dying of thirst. They’re out of material. They start writing about funny things that happened around the house the other day, homey one-liners that the Better Half or the Avon lady got off, or some fascinating book or article that started them thinking, or else something they saw on the TV. Thank God for the TV! Without television shows to cannibalize, half of these people would be lost, utterly catatonic. Pretty soon you can almost see it, the tubercular blue of the 23-inch screen, radiating from their prose. Anytime you see a columnist trying to squeeze material out of his house, articles, books, or the television set, you’ve got a starving soul on your hands . . . You should send him a basket . . .

And as with the DNC-MSM still trying to understand flyover country after a half century of anthropologic study, those last sentences are a reminder that very little changes in the world of old media.

HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE: Female Drake U. Student Initiates Sex with Incapacitated Male, Lies About Key Details. Guess Who Got Expelled? University wouldn’t let male fraternity brother file a Title IX complaint against his accuser, because of “retaliation.”

This encounter soon came to an end—John was too incapacitated to maintain an erection—and the pair ventured into the house. At this point, their accounts are hazy, confused, and contradictory. John remembered passing out in his bed and Jane telling him she was leaving. Jane remembered collapsing into a bean bag chair and waking up to discover John on top of her, wearing a condom. Her pants were pulled down. She claimed she told him to stop, he did, and she left. (Whether this actually happened is in serious dispute.)

But Jane did not go straight home. She went to another fraternity house, uninvited, and climbed into bed with an unsuspecting person. She “jumped on top of him,” and he told her to leave, according to the lawsuit.

She then headed to a different bedroom, removed her shirt, and initiated oral sex on a third person. She spent the night there, and went home in the morning.

And then decided she had been raped.

THE TELEVISION WILL NOT BE REVOLUTIONIZED:

Shot:

I’ve begged them to follow up and document the “Real News Media’s” other obsessive clickbait beat — blogging about what Stephen Colbert or Seth Meyers or John Oliver said that last night, and which persons were SHREDDED during these momentous news events of rich white guys talking to a television camera.

I’m tellin’ ya, this now seems to be 80% of their net output — clips of tv clowns telling jokes.

* * * * * * * *

You know, there was a time, say 20 or 30 years ago, when someone belonging to the media class might have been flattered to be insulted as “one of those pointy-headed intellectuals who always has his nose stuck firmly in a book.

Well — I’d say there’s very little chance of our current media class being slurred like that any longer. I literally never hear these guys talking about a book.

What’s the one book you saw them talking about this last year? Yes, they did talk about one. Hillbilly Elegy. They talked about it for two weeks, and it was all pretty clear they just read the same excerpt from a blog.

Then it was right back to nonstop Stephen Colbert.

Even our alleged intellctual genius of a former president never, and I mean never, talked about books. What he talked about was ESPN’s Sports Center, his brackets, Homeland and Game of Thrones.

Muh shows! Muh shows!

MUH SHOWS!!!

Ace of Spades, March 10th.

Chaser:

The New York Times devotes a long article, with video clips, to last night’s Saturday Night Live show. It appears that the entire program was devoted to attacking President Trump, or members of his administration or family.

* * * * * * * *

So why is a bad Democratic Party comedy show, which has attacked Republicans in the same boring way for 40 years, taken seriously as news? That isn’t hard to figure out. The Times and the AP would like to engage in the same vicious smears that the “comedians” of Saturday Night Live do, but they have to maintain some pretense of being news outlets rather than propaganda machines. The solution? Enthusiastic coverage of the left-wing “comedy” show with blow-by-blow repetition of its pro-Democratic Party smears.

That may or may not be effective–I can hardly believe that it is–but it certainly isn’t news, except of the fake variety.

Fake Entertainment News From the NY Times and Associated Press, March 12.

Hangover: “For Solace and Solidarity in the Trump Age, Liberals Turn the TV Back On”

Actual article in the New York Times, March 12th.

I’m so old, I can remember when “liberals” viciously mocked American plebeians with an addiction to television,  and satirized the entire industry as a vast wasteland not worth saving.

 

I’M SO OLD I REMEMBER WHEN JAPAN WAS THE FUTURE:Cuddling, robots and holograms are replacing sex in Japan.

SCOTT ADAMS: Income Inequality:

What happened is that candidate Trump persuaded us that immigration was a big problem. And in so doing, he pushed the issue of income inequality off the page. Do you remember the last time you saw CNN obsessing about income inequality? I thought it was the public’s biggest issue two years ago. Did it just sort of stop being one?

No, President Trump is in our heads. He told us what our priorities were and we accepted it, even if we hated his plans. Some people think is it a priority to get tougher on immigration, some think the opposite. But we all agree the issue is important.

If you had asked me in 2014 to list my country’s top 10 problems, immigration would not have been on the list. Now it’s usually at the top of the news. Trump did that. And by doing it he showed us a level of leadership that I have never seen in my lifetime. Even if you don’t like where he is leading us.

But here’s the interesting part. If you want to address income inequality, what is one of the best ways to do it? Answer: Limit immigration. That means higher wages for American citizens and lower profits for the top 1% who want cheap labor.

I saw a factoid yesterday that illegal immigration from Mexico is way down lately, presumably in anticipation of the Trump administration being tough. That’s an indicator of rising wages to come. I suppose the top 1% can pass along the higher costs to some extent. But the jobless guy who gets a job won’t be too unhappy that his food is 10% more expensive. He still comes out ahead. And if the employer gets a Trump tax cut, she doesn’t need to pass along as much of the higher wage expense to consumers.

Speaking of jobs, if Trump’s job-creation hype evolves from anecdotal to real, that’s a great way to reduce income inequality too. As I have often said, economies run on psychology, and Trump is a master of psychology. He proved that already by injecting enough optimism into the system that it goosed the stock market, and business confidence in general. That should translate into more investments and a better economy.

The Trump administration also recently tightened their connection to historically black colleges to see how they can help. The best way to reduce income inequality is to address the hardest cases first, to get the most bang for the buck. And the African-American community is coming from the deepest hole. We see no results there yet, but the move makes sense from the perspective of addressing income inequality.

Well, it’s not how Bernie Sanders would do it. Which means it has a chance of working.

PAST PERFORMANCE IS NO GUARANTEE OF FUTURE RESULTS: In “When Did Media Bias Become a Virtue? Liberal dismay about the New York Daily News’ scaling back its front-page campaign against Trump exposes the underside of a partisan press,” Jonathan Tobin writes at NRO:

The saga of the News’ journey from all-out attacks on Trump to more-measured criticism isn’t particularly extraordinary. The left-leaning News was all over Trump throughout the campaign. Its implacable hostility was the work of editor Jim Rich, who initially had the support of publisher Mortimer Zuckerman for his stand. But over the course of the year, the paper’s leadership became less convinced of the wisdom of Rich’s decisions. They believed the unrelenting abuse thrown at Trump was having an impact on their circulation. While most liberal publications got little pushback from their position on Trump, the News’ readership is made up of working-class New Yorkers in the outer boroughs of the city who liked the billionaire’s aggressive nationalism and politically incorrect style.

Rich was eventually forced out, resigning in October 2016. Though the decision was ostensibly a dispute about budget cuts, it is believed that Rich’s over-the-top belligerence toward Trump was the real reason.

Rich’s successor, Arthur Browne, is no supporter of Trump, but as the editor told Politico, after spending more than a year depicting Trump as a clown who was a certain loser, the paper needed to reevaluate its strategy. Once he became the president-elect, the News editor felt the paper’s criticism should focus on his policies rather than merely continuing the assault on Trump’s character. He has backed that up with consistently critical coverage and has approved front pages that referred to the president with the following language: “NUTS!” “WAR ON TRUTH,” “BANANAS!” and “POOR BABY!” He even mourned the election result with a “HOUSE OF HORRORS” headline. But that wasn’t extreme enough for the uniformly liberal staff of the News, which longed for more depictions of Trump like the one Rich ran showing him beheading the Statue of Liberty.

I’m so old, I can remember when Daily News was furious over much milder imagery, and imbued it with magical and evil powers.

WHY ARE LEFTY “COMEDIANS” SO CRUEL AND UN-FUNNY? ‘Full Frontal with Samantha Bee’ apologizes for saying CPAC attendee with brain cancer has a ‘Nazi haircut.’

Late-night news satire show “Full Frontal with Samantha Bee” is apologizing for including a young man with brain cancer in a segment about all the “Nazi haircuts” at the annual Conservative Political Actional Conference.

The “Wither Conservatism” segment — which aired Wednesday —featured a montage of CPAC attendees sporting similar “Nazi haircuts.” One of those included was Kyle Coddington, a college student a contributor for OUTSET magazine.

Afterwards, a Twitter user claiming to be Coddington’s sister tweeted at host Samantha Bee that they were making fun of someone with stage 4 cancer. He reportedly had just finished getting his first round of chemotherapy treatment just before the CPAC conference late last month.

I’m old enough to remember when late-night comedians weren’t just Democratic operatives with punchlines.

INQUIRING MINDS WANT TO KNOW: How come Trump hasn’t fired IRS Commissioner Koskinen?

House Republicans aren’t giving up their quest to show Koskinen the door.

“President Trump should fire Commissioner Koskinen and replace him with someone that will bring integrity and competence to the IRS,” House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., told Fox News on Tuesday.

OK, House GOP, go ahead and impeach Koskinen. Remember, the IRS recently “found” 6,924 new documents related to the targeting of conservative organizations. Judicial Watch has kept up the pressure. The House can exert political pressure. Koskinen would be the opening round. The IRS targeted conservatives — it sure looks like Obama politicized the agency. Did Obama politicize other alphabet agencies (like NSA and CIA) and use them to target Trump? Fair question.

IN SOVIET TIME-WARNER, CNN STICKS FORK IN YOU! CNN’s Reza Aslan Sparks Outrage After Eating Human Brain in New Show: It Tastes Like ‘Charcoal.’

I’m so old, I can remember when the notion of CNN anchors devouring the brains of their viewers was only a metaphor. Not to mention, I can remember when Total Coelo promised me that cannibalism would taste much better. (Yet another myth painfully destroyed by Ted Turner’s demon spawn.)

As NewsBusters quips on Twitter, “Can’t wait for [CNN spokesman/apologist Brian Stelter] to address the media ethics of human brain-eating on a CNN documentary series.”

I’M SO OLD, I CAN REMEMBER WHEN REPUBLICANS WERE CALLED THE “EAT YOUR SPINACH” PARTY: ‘Like something my dog threw up’: Chelsea Clinton’s spinach pancake recipe is grossing people out:

(Classical allusion in headline.)

ADP: US private sector created 298K jobs in Feb. vs. 190K est. “Companies added jobs at a blistering pace in February, with a notable shift away from the service-sector positions that have dominated hiring for years, according to a report Wednesday.”

“February proved to be an incredibly strong month for employment with increases we have not seen in years,” Ahu Yildirmaz, vice president and co-head of the ADP Research Institute, said in a statement.

In addition to the construction and manufacturing positions, mining and natural resources also contributed 8,000 to the total. Trump has promised to restore mining jobs as well.

The year is off to a sizzling start for job creation, according to the ADP counts. January added 261,000 positions, a number that was revised upward from the originally reported 246,000.

“Confidence is playing a large role,” Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics, told CNBC. “Businesses are anticipating a lot of good stuff — tax cuts, less regulation. They are hiring more aggressively.”

I remember reading assurances at the start of the Obama Administration that the “business climate” was meaningless.

R.I.P., DOUG HENRY. The last time I saw him was at Bob Simms’ funeral, where to my surprise he recognized me. When I was an intern for the State Senate in college, my office was right across the hall from his. I remember I was in working on a Saturday and hardly anyone else was around, but he was in his office. He had a broken leg and he had his cast propped up on a chair while he read through reports. We chatted a bit, somehow it came up that I was reading Omar Khayyam, and we wound up having a long and interesting conversation on the subject. Although I think a lot of the other college-aged interns (and me too, at first) discounted him because he seemed like such an Old South figure, he was enormously smart and always treated everyone with respect, if sometimes of an absent-minded variety.

Henry was, with Ned Ray McWherter and John Jay Hooker, one of the very last of the old-fashioned Southern Democrats. Unlike the more modern Bob Forehead generation, these old-style pols didn’t display contempt for voters, or political opponents. As everyone does, they had their flaws, but we’re worse off without them. And, of course, if Al Gore had listened to Ned Ray McWherter in the summer of 2000, he’d have been President.

UPDATE: Stewart Baker emails: “A towering presence and a humble man. My Doug Henry story has to do with NY v. US, which I believe put constitutional federalism on a far more secure footing than National League of Cities, a precedent Justice Blackmun was slowly eating away. I was working with the State and Local Legal Center, and Sen. Henry wanted to make a strong federalism argument in NY v. US but couldn’t get the political support to file. So instead he hired me for $10 thousand of his own money to file amicus in the case. On that budget, I couldn’t do any legal research to speak of, so I wrote an op-ed and sprinkled it with cites. The result was a strong brief — and eventually a strong Court opinion — arguing that it was a violation of federalism for Congress to order states to engage in rulemaking or other governmental tasks. All due to Sen. Henry’s commitment to the cause (and his limited budget).”

I’M GUESSING SCOTT ADAMS WOULD UNDERSTAND: What if Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton Had Swapped Genders? A restaging of the presidential debates with an actress playing Trump and an actor playing Clinton yielded surprising results.

Many were shocked to find that they couldn’t seem to find in Jonathan Gordon what they had admired in Hillary Clinton—or that Brenda King’s clever tactics seemed to shine in moments where they’d remembered Donald Trump flailing or lashing out. For those Clinton voters trying to make sense of the loss, it was by turns bewildering and instructive, raising as many questions about gender performance and effects of sexism as it answered. . . .

We heard a lot of “now I understand how this happened”—meaning how Trump won the election. People got upset. There was a guy two rows in front of me who was literally holding his head in his hands, and the person with him was rubbing his back. The simplicity of Trump’s message became easier for people to hear when it was coming from a woman—that was a theme. One person said, “I’m just so struck by how precise Trump’s technique is.” Another—a musical theater composer, actually—said that Trump created “hummable lyrics,” while Clinton talked a lot, and everything she was was true and factual, but there was no “hook” to it. Another theme was about not liking either candidate—you know, “I wouldn’t vote for either one.” Someone said that Jonathan Gordon [the male Hillary Clinton] was “really punchable” because of all the smiling. And a lot of people were just very surprised by the way it upended their expectations about what they thought they would feel or experience. There was someone who described Brenda King [the female Donald Trump] as his Jewish aunt who would take care of him, even though he might not like his aunt. Someone else described her as the middle school principal who you don’t like, but you know is doing good things for you. . . .

I remember turning to Maria at one point in the rehearsals and saying, “I kind of want to have a beer with her!” The majority of my extended family voted for Trump. In some ways, I developed empathy for people who voted for him by doing this project, which is not what I was expecting. I expected it to make me more angry at them, but it gave me an understanding of what they might have heard or experienced when he spoke.

So switching genders basically allowed Democrats to see clearly.

I’M OLD ENOUGH TO REMEMBER WHEN BARACK OBAMA SAID WE COULDN’T DRILL OUR WAY OUT OF OUR ENERGY PROBLEMS: American Shale Ready to Take On Petrostates.

The U.S. shale boom is back and better than ever. After weathering a collapse in crude prices that saw the value of a barrel of oil drop from more than $110 in June 2014 down below $30 in January 2016, American fracking firms (the ones that survived, that is) are looking fit once again. As Bloomberg reports, these companies are already taking advantage of a petrostate production cut that ceded valuable market share and pushed oil prices back above $50 per barrel. . . .

So now, nearly three years after a global glut sent oil prices into a tailspin and American oil producers to their nearest lenders, U.S. oil production is once again floating above 9 million bpd. And as positive as this is for both the American economy and our country’s energy security, it’s a major threat to oil-soaked states both inside and out of OPEC. Those petrostates banded together late last year to finally agree on a production cut, and they managed to induce a price rebound of roughly $10 per barrel as a result. Now, however, their worst fears are being realized: U.S. shale producers are seizing the opportunity and bringing rigs out of retirement.

I’m beginning to wonder if that Obama fellow knew what he was talking about.

I’M OLD ENOUGH TO REMEMBER WHEN OBAMA SAID WE COULDN’T DRILL OUR WAY OUT OF OUR OIL SHORTAGE: U.S. oil exports are blowing past expectations.

FRACK, BABY, FRACK: Shale Is Reshaping America’s Oil Trade Balance.

America’s crude trade balance is changing. On the import front, the decision by petrostates to cut production (with the intention of erasing a global oil glut to help induce a price rebound) is expected to reduce the amount of oil the U.S. buys from Saudi Arabia and Iraq. Those OPEC members have been constraining output since the beginning of the year, but because it takes roughly six weeks to ship crude from the Middle East to the Americas, we haven’t yet started to see a reduction in supplies from the region.

Now, however, analysts are expecting Saudi and Iraqi imports to start declining as those cuts start to make American oil more attractive to U.S. refiners than their Middle East competitors. . . .

Of course, U.S. oil production has a pivotal role to play in all of this. The shale revolution was the chief reason behind the market oversupply that necessitated these petrostate cuts in the first place, and our rising oil output isn’t just changing how we’re buying crude, it’s also changing how we’re selling it. As Bloomberg reports, our exports are surging to a 24-year high.

I’m old enough to remember when President Obama mocked Sarah Palin by saying we couldn’t drill our way out of our energy shortage.

JORGE RAMOS: U.S. IS ‘OUR COUNTRY, NOT THEIRS.’

I’m so old, I remember when the left pretended that they rejected the concept of us versus them.

Flashback: Megyn Kelly Grills Jorge Ramos on ‘Neutrality’ Claims: Do You Disclose Your Daughter Works For Hillary?

Just think of Jorge as a Democrat operative as well, and it all makes sense.

I’M SO OLD, I CAN REMEMBER WHEN SCIENCE WAS SETTLED: Most scientists ‘can’t replicate studies by their peers.’

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.

QUESTION ASKED: Was ‘Weird Al’ the real star all along?

Yankovic has sold millions of albums, played 1,616 shows and outlasted so many of the stars he once spoofed. His most recent album, 2014’s “Mandatory Fun,” featured parodies of Iggy Azalea, Lorde and Pharrell Williams, a polka medley and his usual smattering of original songs. The album hit No. 1. At 57, he’s now readying a complete set of his 14 studio recordings, plus an album of bonus tracks. “Squeeze Box,” on sale through a PledgeMusic drive until the end of February, will naturally come in an accordion-shaped box. “Comedy recording and funny songs go back to the earliest days of the record industry,” says Barry Hansen, better known as Dr. Demento, the radio host who introduced Yankovic to the public 40 years ago. “But Al is unique. There’s nothing like him in the history of funny music.”

For Chris Hardwick — the comedian who created the Nerdist empire and hosts two game shows, [email protected] and “The Wall” — Yankovic is more than a musical success story. He’s a triumph for all the oddballs and outsiders.

I still remember all the words to “I Lost On Jeopardy,” but couldn’t tell you anything about the original Greg Kihn song other than the name.

RESIST WE MUCH: ‘Not My Presidents Day’ rallies bring thousands to the streets.

I’m so old, I can remember when “Not My President” was racist.

INSTAPUNDIT READERS WEIGH IN ON TRUMP’S H.R. MCMASTER PICK FOR NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISOR: Reader T.J. Linzy writes:

I served with HR McMaster in 2/2 ACR in the first gulf war. He was the E Troop commander; I was a F Troop platoon leader. For your readers who may not know him very well, I would like them to know that this long time Instapundit reader thinks this might be President Trump’s best appointment yet.

HR is is highly intelligent, courageous, and one of the best human beings I have ever known. His integrity, wide-ranging knowledge, and willingness to take the fight to the enemy will dove-tail perfectly with GEN Mattis, IMHO.

Our old, famed unit, the 2d Cavalry (known as the Ghosts of Patton’s Army in WWII), has produced several USA leaders recently, including Mike Powell (Colin Powell’s son and ex-FCC chairman), Doug Lute, US Rep to NATO, and Mike Pompeo, current CIA Director. All were Lieutenants, Captains or Majors in 2CAV in the late 80s and early 90s.

Plus, from another reader:

With President Trump selecting LTG HR McMaster to be the next National Security Advisor, we will no doubt be hearing a lot about the Battle of 73 Easting in the Gulf War. Captain McMaster was in the middle of what may be “the last great tank battle” when his Troop and one other destroyed a brigade of Iraqi tanks. History channel featured it in their series “Greatest Tank Battles” and it is a must watch; I imagine they will replay it soon because of this appointment.

I wanted to add a couple thoughts as I served under him and while I didn’t interact much with him personally, it was clear that McMaster may be the smartest man I have ever met – I went to an “elite” northeast academy and an Ivy – and nobody I know can hold a candle to his ability to learn every side and nuance of almost every conflict around the globe. While at Fort Benning, I was selected by my commander to head up the International Military Student Office where roughly 1000 foreign officers and non-commissioned officers from nearly 100 allied nations attend US Army courses. McMaster was the commanding general at the time of the Maneuver Center of Excellence (combined Infantry and Armor schools) and since it was a somewhat sensitive posting, I had to meet him personally. He was very knowledgeable of what my job would entail and made sure I understood, but he also knew about my entire career up to that point; this is impressive as he had hundreds of captains under him, but not exactly rare as it is a common characteristic of leaders effective enough to make flag rank.

What impressed me the most about him was his interaction with the international students. One of the courses that the international students attended was the captains’ career course and I had 7 cycles of 25-30 students in each ranging in rank from Lieutenant to Lieutenant Colonel. At the end of each class, MG McMaster would have a lunch with them where he would open the floor to any and all questions. These students came from every part of the world, and McMaster was able to answer nearly every question with stunning detail and understanding of the entire geopolitical ramifications behind each situation. In fact, only once did I every hear him say “I am not entirely familiar with that situation…” if I remember correctly, it revolved around a (relatively) new narcotics conflict in Suriname, but he then still answered the question by being able to draw upon knowledge he had in narcotics trafficking conflicts in other parts of South America, and the overall political climate in Suriname. The most challenging questions came from the Pakistanis of the class and while they sometimes became heated, he would approach the student after and speak personally to ensure that while they may not like what he said, they understood that he felt he had to answer them honestly – there was never hard feelings and always mutual respect from both him and the student. Every single student I spoke to afterward was blown away by how McMaster addressed their question and appreciated how much he understood about the problems in their home countries.

These Q&A sessions were scheduled for an hour and almost always went much longer as he was willing and eager to interact with those students whom he told would be “the future leaders of our allies” Imagine being a Lieutenant from a small nation being given this kid of respect and deference by a 2-star general of the US Army! These lunches were not mandatory but he did them anyway because the foreign students sent to study in the US are those officers whose nations predict will be their future senior leaders, quite possibly even some heads of state; McMaster understood to his core that the impressions he made then would affect US foreign relations 10, 20, 30 years into the future.

McMaster is a speed reader and I believe he also has a photographic memory. He was able to have an expansive grasp of the political ramifications on almost every live conflict in the world and it wasn’t even his job at the time to know them – his job was to train Infantry and Armor officers, but he knew that adding this aspect to his own education and the educations of those studying under him would make them better. This man is a perfect fit for the job of NSA and hopefully he will not meet the same resistance that so many current appointees encounter.

TJ Buttrick, CPT, US Army (retired)

And I don’t want to share details without permission, but a former student of mine who served with McMaster was saying similar things on Facebook.

I’M OLD ENOUGH TO REMEMBER THE OBAMA BOYS CLUB WHITE HOUSE, but I’m supposed to be outraged at this: Men outnumber women more than 2-1 among top White House aides.

I guess it’ll be a hotbed of woman-grabbing misogyny like this scene, involving Obama speechwriter Jon Favreau:

“Fraternities have been closed for less.”

Related: In Early Obama White House Female Staffers Felt Frozen Out.

I’M SO OLD, I CAN REMEMBER WHEN IT WAS “THE 1980s CALLED.” The 1950s Called. It Wants Its Atomic War Plans Back. But this is misleading. We don’t live in the Dr. Strangelove era any more.

I’M SO OLD I REMEMBER WHEN THE NEW REPUBLIC WASN’T PATHETIC:

In an essay that makes Meryl Streep look like an astute political commentator, The New Republic’s social media editor, Sarah Jones, claims “Trump Has Turned the GOP Into the Party of Eugenics.” Well, not literally, Jones concedes in the sixth paragraph. Or at all, it turns out, once you’ve waded through all 2,300 words of increasingly desperate argumentation. . . .

Jones omits a major target of anti-Republican rants: the GOP’s pro-life stance, which is inconvenient for her argument because it entails rejecting tools favored by coercive eugenicists: abortion, euthanasia, and sterilization. She also conspicuously ignores the intimate relationship between eugenics and progressivism. It was progressive icon Oliver Wendell Holmes, after all, who declared that “three generations of imbeciles are enough” in Buck v. Bell, the 1927 Supreme Court decision upholding Virginia’s forced sterilization of “mental defectives” (a decision that was joined by progressive luminary Louis Brandeis). Jones quotes a book about that case in her second paragraph but shows no interest in the ideological roots of the policy Holmes endorsed. She is so intent on exposing metaphorical eugenicists that she overlooks the political philosophy of actual eugenicists.

Jones’s article is an excellent example for progressives who want to alienate allies while discrediting criticism of Trump. She manages to exaggerate the odiousness of the president’s views even while conflating them with those of mainstream Republicans, turning what should be a discussion of Trumpism’s peculiar dangers into a familiar attack on cruel privatizers and budget cutters. If this is what the anti-Trump movement is all about, you can count me out.

Well, it pretty much is. A cynic might conclude that if they had good arguments against Trump, they’d be using them, instead of these. But then again, it is The New Republic.

I’M SO OLD, I REMEMBER WHEN CALLING PEOPLE TEA-BAGGERS WASN’T HOMOPHOBIC: Mainstream Media Scream: Smeared ‘Tea Party’ name OK when it’s liberal.

BILL KRISTOL: “Obviously strongly prefer normal democratic and constitutional politics. But if it comes to it, prefer the deep state to the Trump state.”

I’m so old, I can remember when conservative leaders actually championed the notion of a small government that would leave average Americans alone, rather than a faceless army of weaponized unaccountable bureaucrats.

DAVID FRUM: What Effective Protest Could Look Like.

You want to scare Trump? Be orderly, polite, and visibly patriotic.

In other words, be the Tea party. But [EDIT FOR CLARITY] copying the Tea Party has been tried already, repeatedly, without success.

More:

Trump wants to identify all opposition to him with the black-masked crowbar thugs who smashed windows and burned a limo on his inauguration day. Remember Trump’s tweet about stripping citizenship from flag burners? It’s beyond audacious that a candidate who publicly requested help from Russian espionage services against his opponent would claim the flag as his own. But Trump is trying. Don’t let him get away with it. Carry the flag. Open with the Pledge of Allegiance. Close by singing the Star Spangled Banner––like these protesters at LAX, in video posted by The Atlantic’s own Conor Friedersdorf. Trump’s presidency is itself one long flag-burning, an attack on the principles and institutions of the American republic. That republic’s symbols are your symbols. You should cherish them and brandish them.

Don’t get sucked into the futile squabbling cul-de-sac of intersectionality and grievance politics. Look at this roster of speakers from the January 21 march. What is Angela Davis doing there? Where are the military women, the women police officers, the officeholders? If Planned Parenthood is on the stage, pro-life women should stand there, too. If you want somebody to speak for immigrants, invite somebody who’s in the country lawfully.

By and large, those are the people the Left has already lost — or has driven away, or actively despises.

DISPATCHES FROM THE SJW-NFL: “A week after Houston celebrated hosting Super Bowl LI, the NFL says the state’s proposed transgender bathroom bill could affect whether Texas gets to do so again.”

I’m so old, I can remember when the NFL cared more about football than allowing men into ladies rooms.

I’M SO OLD, I CAN REMEMBER WHEN THEY MOCKED MITT ROMNEY ON RUSSIA: Roger Simon on the Mainstream Media’s Pointless Fixation on Trump and Putin.

FAKE SCIENCE: How world leaders were duped into investing billions over manipulated global warming data.

The Mail on Sunday today reveals astonishing evidence that the organisation that is the world’s leading source of climate data rushed to publish a landmark paper that exaggerated global warming and was timed to influence the historic Paris Agreement on climate change.

A high-level whistleblower has told this newspaper that America’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) breached its own rules on scientific integrity when it published the sensational but flawed report, aimed at making the maximum possible impact on world leaders including Barack Obama and David Cameron at the UN climate conference in Paris in 2015.

The report claimed that the ‘pause’ or ‘slowdown’ in global warming in the period since 1998 – revealed by UN scientists in 2013 – never existed, and that world temperatures had been rising faster than scientists expected. Launched by NOAA with a public relations fanfare, it was splashed across the world’s media, and cited repeatedly by politicians and policy makers.

But the whistleblower, Dr John Bates, a top NOAA scientist with an impeccable reputation, has shown The Mail on Sunday irrefutable evidence that the paper was based on misleading, ‘unverified’ data.

It was never subjected to NOAA’s rigorous internal evaluation process – which Dr Bates devised.

Read the whole thing.

But remember that if world leaders were duped, it’s because they’re willing dupes — nothing gets their attention faster than a drummed up crisis they can use to increase their money and power.

DON SURBER: Orrin Hatch Joins The Party Of Trump.

But what about comity?

What about the long-term implications?

What about straining relations between the parties?

Don’t care. Democrats have never cared. Why should Republicans?

Democrats tried this crap in Wisconsin in February 2011. Remember the shouting mobs Democrats sent to the Capitol in Madison? Meanwhile, Democrats left the state to try to stop the vote in the legislature.

But Republican Governor Scott Walker did not bend, and he became the first governor in our nation’s history to survive a recall election.

And in November, Wisconsin flipped red in the presidential race for the first time since 1984.

What Dems really hate about Trump is that he campaigns and governs with the no-holds-barred approach of a Democrat.

I’M OLD ENOUGH TO REMEMBER WHEN COMPARING A PRESIDENT TO HITLER WAS PROOF YOU WERE A KOOK, AND PROBABLY A RACIST: Washington Post, again, draws parallels between Trump and Hitler. “Trump’s daughter Ivanka is a convert to Judaism and her husband Jared Kushner is also an American Jew and descendant of Holocaust survivors.”

FAKE NEWS: Newsweek’s Jonathan Alter attempts legal analysis on Steve Bannon and the NSC, gets NUKED by Laurence Tribe.

UPDATE (From Ed): I’m so old, I remember when Alter had to be reminded of the language of the Constitution – by Tom Brokaw and the late Tim Russert, when Alter became Bush Derangement Syndrome Patient Zero at the end of the interminable election night of 2000.

JOEL KOTKIN ON IMMIGRATION: “In often needlessly harsh ways, President Donald Trump is forcing Americans to face issues that have been festering for decades, but effectively swept under the rug by the ruling party duopoly. Nowhere is this more evident than with immigration, an issue that helped to spark Trump’s quixotic, but ultimately successful, campaign. Many Americans are clearly upset about an estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants, and many also fear the arrival of more refugees from Islamic countries. Perhaps no issue identified by Trump has been more divisive. Not surprisingly, Trump’s rhetoric has stirred bitter anger among the country’s polite establishment, right and left, as well as the progressive grievance industry. . . . Politically, the open borders rhetoric helps Trump. Even in California, three-quarters of the population, according to a recent UC Berkeley survey, oppose sanctuary cities. Overall, more Americans favor less immigration than more. Most, according to a recent Pew Research Center study, also want tougher border controls and increased deportations. They also want newcomers to come legally and adopt the prevailing cultural norms, including English.”

Honestly, I think Trump’s encouraging the freakoutrage on purpose here. The more the Democrats shriek about not “normalizing” President Trump, the more they de-normalize themselves. This piece is circulating among some of the smarter lefties at the moment, and makes that point, although I don’t think Trump is Hugo Chavez or even close. If he were, all those lefty celebrities would be supporting him. . . .

UPDATE: Howie Carr:

Matthew Denice was a 23-year-old taxpaying U.S. citizen when he was run over and dragged to his death by a drunken illegal immigrant on welfare back in 2011.

It was not an isolated incident. Denice was the third American killed by illegal immigrants in two years in just one small central Massachusetts community.

The former governor of Massachusetts, Deval Patrick, could never remember Matthew Denice’s name. A Democrat candidate for governor in 2014 (Don Berwick) breezily dismissed the horrific crime as an “anecdote.” And just last week, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh told a radio audience he had no idea who Matthew Denice was.

Do you know who does know Matthew Denice’s name? The president of the United States, Donald J. Trump.

And that is yet another reason why he is president, and these shameless Democrats are wandering in the political wilderness.

The immigration debate hurts the Dems most because it makes clear that they don’t really care about American citizens. That goes with the cultural contempt for “deplorables” in a very toxic way.

Related: Don Surber: Media In A Fact-Free Fall Over Immigration.

YOU’RE INSIDE MY OODA LOOP! STOP IT! Margaret Carlson: Slow Down, Mr. President.

Trump is a man of action and it’s working for him, in a way. Call a meeting with CEOs, visit key cabinet agencies, hold signing ceremonies, watch yourself being discussed on cable TV late into the night, legislate by fiat, and tweet your heart out. By no means stop to read a briefing book or study what’s gone before. Make moves based on instinct and impulse. . . .

The media shouldn’t let the last outrage go. But news by definition is what is happening now. Who remembers the 12 women who accused Trump of sexual assault, or all the vendors stiffed by him? It’s so yesterday. Trump has put up a photo of his inauguration in the White House taken at an angle that avoids the vast empty spaces. By his standards, he’s won. The dishonest media, Metro statistics and our own eyes have lost.

To say this is a strategy is to ascribe a master plan to an ever-flitting hummingbird. Trump’s actions are more a reaction to external stimuli and his roiling inner metabolism, both at odds with his colleagues on the Hill and some in his own cabinet.

Oh, I’m not so sure about that. But I think the political class is unused to the speed at which businesspeople make decisions. Flit like a hummingbird, sting like a bee!

DISPATCHES FROM THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE: Dallas high school art teacher Payal Modi “has been placed on administrative leave after video surfaced showing her ‘shooting’ President Donald Trump inside a classroom while screaming, ‘Die!’…I wonder which offense the school district finds worst: a faux assassination or a teacher using a squirt gun on school property.”

Modi appears to be a woman of the left; at PJ Media, Megan Fox writes that “Adding irony to injury, Modi’s Instagram account featured this on her page recently, urging ‘kindness’ and ‘respect.’ Also littering Modi’s Instagram account are references to the Women’s March and the marchers’ pus*y fixation.”

I’m old enough to remember when the media believed that Sarah Palin’s clip art could magically kill, and that gun-related language should be treated as the equivalent of the N-word. Flash-forward to 2017 and the news segment that the Dallas CBS affiliate ran of the incident is a fascinating example of bias by omission. Apparently the reporters could find no one who objected to the incident or an angered Trump-voting parent to appear on camera; one giggling student they interviewed wants Modi back teaching ASAP because hey, botched joke, ya know?

I doubt that defense would have flown until very recently; just imagine the 50-point bold typeface JFK-flashback headlines that would have run, right up until last week: CLIMATE OF HATE: DALLAS TEACHER THREATENS TO ASSASSINATE OBAMA IN FRONT OF CLASS!

(Via SDA.)

MY FATHER DIED YESTERDAY. He did so peacefully, and surrounded by family and friends. It wasn’t unexpected, so I had a lot of posts scheduled for today. This column from a few weeks ago tells the story pretty well.

I’m not going away, but I’m taking a week off from the USAT column, and blogging here — by me, at least, as the co-bloggers are stepping up nicely — will be lighter than usual.

And here are some words from Charles Black that mean a lot to me:

In process of letting go the breath,

Moment for relieving your eyes’ ache,

You see bark patterns, a child’s hand

Catching and throwing, next to the tree.

You have to relive all your days

To receive the gift of surprise

At words you didn’t quite hear, once riding.

Do what you can; everything will come

In memory if never in experience.

Revisit, retell. Love sounds deeper

Out of time than in time. Act love

Imperfectly; you will remember love itself.

KURT SCHLICHTER: Can Creepy Leftist Weirdos Create A Progressive Tea Party?

Now the question is whether the Democrats can pull off the same thing, because you know they want to – sort of. Don’t believe the comfortable lie liberals tell themselves – the Tea Party was no astroturfed, community organized event. It was largely spontaneous, brought into being mainly by people who had learned their organizational skills running small businesses, churches, and community events. Sure, the charlatans came along later, but in its prime the Tea Party was just normal people pushing into politics as a way of pushing back against liberal intrusion into their lives.

Of course, that decentralization was what frustrated the GOP Establishment – they could not control the beast. The Tea Party did its own thing, famously defying the bosses with various levels of success. Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, and Marco Rubio: Good. That oddball who went on TV to deny being a witch: Not so good. And the Tea Party held the Establishment’s Gucci loafered feet to the fire – instead of just going through the motions, now the GOP had to start performing. That’s happened with various levels of success, but just remember that Obamacare is going to be dead in the very near future. Revenge is a dish best served cold – think iced tea.

Now, can this collection of leftist strange-os and commies, feminists and femboys, do the same?

Not without plenty of Astroturf and Soros money — which isn’t the same at all.

ANALYSIS: TRUE. Obama Era Precedents Haunt Media.

Noah Rothman:

“Don’t recall ever seeing a WH do this,” remarked Huffington Post White House reporter Christina Wilkie. “Some might call it Propaganda,” NBC News’ Katy Tur averred. “I didn’t totally expect the 1984-esque dystopian future to be so soon, but life comes at ya fast,” snarked the Center for American Progress’s economist Katie Bahn. But this, too, is not an unparalleled abuse of the public trust; at least, not for those who remember how the Obama administration sold the public on the Iran nuclear accords in 2015.

The Obama administration’s “blog” content (now maintained by the National Archives and Records Administration), which includes former Press Secretary Josh Earnest’s “Regional Roundup: What America’s Newspapers are Saying About the Iran Deal.” The blog consisted entirely of favorable headlines from around the country reciting verbatim (and false) administration claims about the nuclear accord. “The Iran Deal” even had its own Twitter account which disseminated not only favorable press mentions but also crafted insipid pop culture memes to get the millennial generation jazzed about nuclear non-proliferation. Imagine the anxiety among journalists when the Trump White House mirrors this tactic.

If it weren’t for double standards…

I’M SO OLD, I CAN REMEMBER WHEN OBSTRUCTIONISM WAS TANTAMOUNT TO TERRORISM: Trump’s Nominees Face ‘Unprecedented’ Democrat Obstructionism.

I’M SO OLD, I CAN REMEMBER WHEN “JOURNALISTS” SERVED AS PARTY OPERATIVES FOR A PRESIDENT WHO ADVOCATED RADICAL CHANGE: Journalists Whine About “Tradition” After NY Post Gets First Question At Trump Press Briefing.

As Glenn predicted this morning, “Things will change:”

The press’s “insider” status — which it cherishes — is going to fade. (This is producing waves of status anxiety, as are many other Trump-induced institutional changes). And, having abandoned, quite openly, any pretense of objectivity and neutrality in the election, the press is going to be treated as an enemy by the Trump Administration until further notice.

So I guess love isn’t in the air anymore with the MSM — why, it’s like they’re Democrat party operatives with bylines or something.

BRETIGNE SHAFER ON LEFTIES AND TRUMP:

Here’s the thing: I’m a libertarian. I’ve been surrounded by people who don’t agree with me for as long as I can remember and it has never occurred to me to isolate myself from everyone because of our political differences. Certainly not to assault them. Nor am I filled with anxiety by the thought that people who work in my home might have different political views than mine. To me, you’re all a bunch of fascists. But I’ve somehow learned to live with you.

For me, watching people unravel over this election has been instructive. The – yes, I’m going to say it – bigotry of many on the left, in their caricaturing of Trump supporters, has never before been so blatant. Nor has the jaw-dropping, mass-hypnosis level of selective partisan-driven outrage. I understand that a lot of people are worried, upset, even frightened over the prospect of a Trump presidency. Good. They should be. But they should have been worried eight years ago, or at the very least, four years ago.

I was worried four years ago. And I was worried eight years ago. I tried in vain to get my Obama-supporting friends to see what I saw, but with very few exceptions (which I appreciated, thank you) I was met with silence, accused of mean-spiritedness or just told that I should “give him a chance” (did I have a choice?)


I was right in all but one of my predictions for the Obama administration, by the way.

So in case you (like some of my friends) somehow missed out on what’s been happening over the past eight years, let me catch you up:

1. We no longer have a Fourth Amendment, nor the right of habeas corpus (you remember: it was kind of the foundation of our justice system). Yes, the demise of these fundamental protections has been a long time coming, but President Obama delivered the death blow when he gave himself (and all future presidents) the right to imprison indefinitely or even assassinate any human being on the planet with no due process whatsoever.

Number One should be enough. Any normal person should look at the first item on this list and say “OK, I guess that’s a little bit worse than making fun of a disabled reporter.” (And I say this as the mother of an intellectually disabled daughter.) But, because I know it won’t be enough, I’ll continue…

2. Obama has bombed more countries than George W. Bush did, and his drone strikes have killed more than six times as many people as those under Bush, according to the Bureau of Investigative Journalism (killing unintended victims 90% of the time.)

3. He has given himself (and all future presidents) the power to wage war without Congressional approval.

4. He has greatly expanded the mass surveillance of American citizens.

5. He put in place a statist health insurance mandate that has sent insurance premiums skyrocketing.

6. He has continued the same brand of crony capitalism and debt expansion of the previous administration.

7. He has deported more than 2.5 million immigrants – more than any other American president in history.

8. After running on a platform of more government transparency, he has presided over an administration more hostile than any other to whistleblowers and a free press.

9. Police brutality has not abated, nor has the mass incarceration of Americans (and especially black and Hispanic Americans. Maybe it’s only “racism” if the president is a white Republican?)

10. Did I mention he – and all future presidents – now has the legal right to kill anyone on the planet, including American citizens, with no conviction, no charges, no semblance of due process at all. Did I mention that?

It was fine as long as it was Obama. It’s Hitler now that it’s Trump.

WHY DO THEY HATE AMERICA? Democrats block quick confirmation of Trump’s CIA director. I’m old enough to remember when this sort of “obstructionism” was tantamount to terrorist activity.

FORGET IT CHARLIE, IT’S DAILYBEASTTOWN:

screen-shot-2017-01-20-at-8-53-51-pm

I’m so old I can remember when “Fake News” was supposed to be bad.

FRACK, BABY, FRACK: Geology Helps Shale Boom Anew in Texas Basin.

Don’t look now, but there’s a shale rebound underway, and it’s being powered by Texas’s Permian Basin. The U.S. has added 482,000 barrels of oil per day since mid-October, an increase of more than 5 percent that’s been driven in large part by burgeoning output out of that west Texas shale formation. This resurgence can partly be put down to an uptick in oil prices, itself a result of the recent petrostate production cut that’s helped add more than $10 to the price of a barrel of oil. But, as the New York Times reports, the real driver behind the Permian’s prowess lies in its geology (or, more accurately, its stratigraphy). . . .

Geology is one of the (many) reasons American shale producers have enjoyed such wild success over the past decade while their counterparts abroad have struggled to get any sort of commercial production off the ground. Tectonic movement often “crunches” rock layers into uneven, tangled messes, which can be problematic for drillers looking to hit a specific layer to extract hydrocarbons. Here in the continental United States, our rock layers are relatively evenly layered, so much so that they have even been compared to a wedding cake. That makes it much easier for producers to drill the horizontal wells into productive zones, frack the shale rock, and then extract the oil and gas trapped within.

But in the Permian’s case, multiple shale layers are stacked on top of one another, which makes rigs plumbing plays in the region that much more productive. That in turn has helped to bring down the region’s breakeven costs well below current prices, which helps explain why west Texas is leading the shale rebound.

I’m old enough to remember when President Barack Obama mocked Sarah Palin and said that we couldn’t “drill our way out of” our energy problems.

OBAMA, YOU’LL REMEMBER, INSISTED ON KEEPING HIS BLACKBERRY DESPITE ADVICE THAT IT WAS INSECURE: Report: Trump has given up personal cellphone. “Trump apparently told a friend on Thursday that he has given up the phone on the advice of security agencies.”

WHY ARE DEMOCRATS SO VIOLENT AND UN-AMERICAN? Unprecedented threats drive Secret Service inauguration security. I’m so old, I can remember when accepting election results was the sine qua non of citizenship.

Is anybody keeping track of Robert Creamer, Jan Schakowsky’s (D-IL) husband, who ginned up violence at Trump rallies on behalf of Hillary’s campaign? Because what’s going on now isn’t some sort of spontaneous upwelling. It’s organized, which means that there are organizers.

REMEMBER, LEFTIES WILL ALWAYS TURN ON YOU: Liz Warren once vouched for school vouchers. “Top Trump critic U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren — who’s expected to grill Education Secretary nominee Betsy DeVos tomorrow — once advocated school choice much like the woman she is likely to grandstand against. . . . The Harvard Law professor proposed giving students vouchers to attend any public school they wanted in an attempt to eliminate the current system that often necessitates that students live in a pricey community to attend a good public school. ‘The whole concept of “the Beverly Hills schools” or “Newton schools” would die out,’ she wrote of the vouchers.”

Related: Is Cory Booker Turning Opportunist? If he opposes Betsy Devos, his former ally on school choice, he’ll reveal himself as a garden-variety partisan. “Almost every politician, by definition, is ambitious and seeks a larger stage. But if Cory Booker comes out against Betsy DeVos, he will not only have given the school-choice movement he has championed a slap in the face; he will also have called into question the reputation he had of being a liberal problem-solver.”

Pretty much every time I’ve been told that some promising young urban politician is different, pragmatic, not in the pocket of the usual special interests, etc., it’s turned out to be wrong. I mean, look what happened with Obama.

UPDATE: Oops, Liz Warren link was wrong before. Fixed now. Sorry!

ADRIANA COHEN ON THE DEMOCRATS’ ELECTION-DENIAL:

Since Donald Trump’s unexpected victory, Democrats have been trying to delegitimize his historic upset.

U.S. Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), who sent shock waves through the media echo chamber this weekend when he said in an NBC interview, “I don’t see this president-elect as a legitimate president. I think the Russians participated in helping this man get elected. And they helped destroy the candidacy of Hillary Clinton.” Former Clinton campaign spokesman Brian Fallon went on CNN Friday to chime in as well. . . .

I’ll tell you real reasons Clinton lost. In addition to failing to campaign in key battleground states, she lacked an inspiring message. Hillary thought she could win by (A) riding Obama’s coattails and (B) attacking Trump.

Never mind that she alienated voters with her “Pay to Play” family foundation, her Wall Street ties or her failure to maintain national security by insisting on doing government business on a private email server — all to dodge public scrutiny. After the lies she told from “I didn’t send or receive any classified emails,” to blaming a video for the terrorist attack that killed four Americans in Benghazi, voters got skittish.

Add to it skyrocketing Obamacare premiums and her goose was cooked — quite apart from any alleged hacking.

Remember, Vladimir Putin didn’t announce Obamacare costs were going up double digits on average in 2017 — the Health and Human Services Department did — right before the election.

But no matter, Dems are still trying to delegitimize Trump’s victory. Can you imagine if GOP members of Congress called Obama’s presidency in 2008 or 2012 illegitimate? They would’ve been called racist. If Clinton won this election and Republicans said her presidency wasn’t legitimate, they’d be called sexist. It would be the War on Women all over again.

Yep. And I don’t think this is playing very well, but I also don’t think it’s so much a planned strategy as something they just can’t help. But Joe Manchin understands that this is playing badly with swing voters:

Georgia Rep. John Lewis’ comments about President-elect Trump were “uncalled for,” Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin said Sunday.

“I’ve got the utmost respect for Congressman Lewis. He’s an icon, if you will,” Manchin told CBS’ John Dickerson. “I just think that was uncalled for. I just wish that rhetoric would tone down from both back and forth.”

Lewis had said last week he doesn’t view Trump as a “legitimate” president, nor does he look forward to working with the president-elect once he enters office.

The “bickering going on back and forth” between Lewis and Trump makes the U.S. look weaker to its allies, Manchin said.

Related: Don Surber: When Atlanta’s High Crime Rate Is Acceptable To The Journal-Constitution. When treating it as a problem might help Trump, of course.

Plus: The Left Hates Trump Because His Victory Was A Cultural One, Not Just A Political One:

The left is used to losing political battles. They scream and cry over these but they don’t truly panic, because they know that as long as they maintain their hammerlock on the culture, Republicans can’t really change anything.

Blue Team Progressivism is a church, offering you moral superiority and a path to spiritual enlightenment. As a church it’s got a lot going for it. It runs religious programming on television, all day every day. Every modern primetime program is like a left-wing Andy Griffith show, reinforcing lessons of inclusion, tolerance, feminism, and anti-racism.

Watching a 90-pound Sci-Fi heroine beat up a room full of giant evil men is as satisfying to the left as John Wayne westerns were for the right.

The Blue Church controls the HR department, so even if you don’t go to church, you have to act like a loyal churchgoer in every way that matters while you’re on the clock. And off the clock, on any kind of public social media platform.

Jon Stewart and John Oliver are basically TV preachers. Watching them gives the same sense of quiet superiority your grandma gets from watching The 700 Club. The messages are constantly reinforced, providing that lovely dopamine hit, like an angel’s voice whispering, “You’re right, you’re better, you’re winning.”

Hollywood award shows are like church talent shows – the skits and jokes aren’t really funny, but it’s fun to look at the pretty girls, and you’re all on the same team. . . .

For the first time in decades, voters explicitly rejected the Blue Church, defying hours of daily cultural programming, years of indoctrination from the schools, and dozens of explicit warnings from HR.

We’ve been trained since childhood to obey the pretty people on TV, but for the first time in decades, that didn’t work.

Donald Trump won because flyover America wants their culture back, and Blue Team has not been rejected like that before.

The younger ones have grown up in an environment where Blue Faith assumptions cannot even be questioned, except anonymously by the bad kids on Twitter.

But now the bad kids are getting bolder, posting funny memes that make you laugh even though John Oliver would not approve, like passing crude dirty pictures under the table in Sunday School.

Meryl Streep is panicking because for the first time voters have rejected HER, and everything her faith has taught her to believe.

I think there’s a lot to that.

I’M SO OLD I CAN REMEMBER WHEN HIGHER EDUCATION WAS SOLD AS A MEANS TO REDUCE INEQUALITY: Rich Students Go To Graduate School To Get Richer.

HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE, COST-HIDING EDITION: How University Costs Keep Rising Despite Tuition Freezes: Ballooning fees are leaving some students feeling nickel-and-dimed.

At a time when public anger is laser-focused on tuition charges that are rising three times faster than inflation, something less well understood has actually been largely responsible for pushing up the cost of college: fees.

Think tuition is high? Now add fees for student activities, fees for athletics, fees for building maintenance, fees for libraries—even fees for graduation, the bills for which often arrive just as students and their families thought they were finally done paying for their higher education.

All are frustratingly piled on top of a long list of expenses beyond tuition that many people never plan for or expect, or that can’t be covered by financial aid—sometimes forcing them to take out more and more loans, or quit college altogether.

“It was, like, what is this?” Ann Roach remembered thinking as she kept getting billed for fees when her oldest son went to the University of Dayton. “It’s like buying a car. You think you have a price, and then they tell you, ‘Here’s a conveyance fee, or here’s a fee for $200 to put the license plates on.’ Nobody told us about these.”

Fees nationwide continue to increase even faster than tuition—often covering the same things but letting institutions claim tuition hikes are slowing. Now, however, in response to anger from parents and students, and pressure from legislatures, or for marketing reasons in a time when they’re struggling to attract applicants, a few universities and colleges are pledging to make them more predictable or even drop them altogether. And the resulting decline in borrowing and dropout rates on those campuses suggest the significant toll that fees were taking on their students.

They are a lot like car salesmen, when you get right down to it. Well, except that cars have gotten steadily better over the past several decades, whereas the quality of higher education has actually declined.

JOHN HINDERAKER: Today’s Intelligence Report Proves Nothing.

The report constitutes, allegedly, the long-awaited proof that Russia (specifically, Vladimir Putin) meddled in the 2016 presidential election by, most notably, hacking into email accounts of the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton campaign manager John Podesta and distributing emails from those accounts to Wikileaks and others.

Does the report prove that claim? No, it merely states it. There is zero evidence in the report tying the Russian government (or anyone else) to the crude spearfishing effort or to the generic, out-of-date malware that invaded the DNC’s and Podesta’s email systems. Zero. Nada. Zilch.

Related: To the FBI, CIA and NSA: Where Were You When We Needed You?

While failing utterly to provide evidence (let alone persuasive evidence) that Russia intruded into the DNC’s email system, today’s intelligence report is not without interest. The most notable sections of the report are those that tie Russia’s government to a series of left-wing propaganda campaigns in the U.S. No member of the Occupy movement, for instance, can read the report without squirming. If true, it vindicates what we conservatives have been saying for decades, going back to the unilateral disarmament and nuclear freeze movements of the 1950s through 1980s.

Those didn’t constitute a national crisis, because they enhanced Democratic power rather than harming it.

Plus: “Remember the anti-Diebold campaign from the Democrats in 2012? That propaganda effort may have been inspired, and was supported, if today’s report is credible, by Russia’s government.”

And: “Russia has supported environmental groups to try to suppress fracking, which strikes at the heart of Russian economic strength. . . . I personally think that the anti-fracking movement is mostly a creation of the Russian government. That view is at least consistent with today’s report.”

HOWIE CARR ON HATE-CRIME HYPOCRISY:

Finally, yesterday, the Chicago police charged the four aspiring rappers with a hate crime for allegedly beating, torturing and kidnapping a white mentally disabled kid from the suburbs.

They were screaming “Bleep white people!” and “Bleep Trump!” but none of the PC posse wanted to … uh, jump to any conclusions.

Take Obama — please. His flack Josh Earnest was asked if this was a hate crime.

“I think it’s too early to tell.”

No call from Obama for a “national conversation” about hate crimes. He didn’t even call it “workplace violence.” . . .

This wasn’t the first post-election black-on-white hate crime on the West Side. In November, a 50-year-old white man was dragged from his car by four people screaming obscenities about Trump. That hate crime was likewise recorded on videotape.

Police arrested Rajune Lewis, Dejuan Collins, Julian Christian and a juvenile and … do you remember seeing anything about this on the network newscasts? Me neither.

Compare this kid-glove treatment for all these thugs to what happened to the two Babson College students who drove over to Wellesley College after the election. Let’s let Babson President (and former Lt. Gov.) Muffy Healey describe how her students “engaged in behavior that was, at a minimum, insensitive, unacceptable and contrary to our core values.”

Their crime? They were yelling “Trump 2016!” and “Make America Great Again.”

Muffy banned them from campus and they were kicked out of their frat. They had to hire lawyers to fight Muffy’s fake news.

If it wasn’t for double standards, the alt-left wouldn’t have any standards at all.

True.

FUNDAMENTAL TRANSFORMATION: Inside Trump’s strategy to remodel the Supreme Court. “Trump’s team wants to make filling the seat held by the late Justice Antonin Scalia one of the earliest acts of his presidency, according to multiple transition officials, in hopes of scoring an energizing and unifying victory for the conservative movement. . . . While Scalia’s seat is the only current opening, Trump’s advisers are plotting how to fill that vacancy in tandem with the next one — a slot if vacated by a liberal justice like Ruth Bader Ginsburg, 83, or swing-vote Justice Anthony Kennedy, 80, could far more dramatically move the court’s political center of gravity to the right.”

I’m so old, I can remember when Trump was impulsive, ignorant and incapable of thinking strategically.

I’M SO OLD, I REMEMBER WHEN PRESIDENT OBAMA MOCKED SARAH PALIN AND SAID WE COULDN’T “DRILL OUR WAY OUT” OF HIGH OIL PRICES: US Shale Producers End 2016 on High Note.

WHEN PROTEST IS PATRIOTIC: The Return of Civil Disobedience: The sixties produced a conviction that “democracy is in the streets.” The Trump era may echo that.

Basic rule: Dissent is the highest form of patriotism, but only when there’s a Republican in the White House.

BIPOLAR MSM ATTACKS CUSTOMERS:

Shot:

2009_socialist_newsweek_cover_5-5-13-1

“We Are All Socialists Now,” headline on February 16, 2009 cover of Newsweek, then owned by the Graham family, which also owned the Washington Post until 2013. (Link safe, goes to NewsBusters.)

Chaser: “2016 Was the Year White Liberals Realized How Unjust, Racist, and Sexist America Is.”

—Headline, Slate, the last opinion Website owned by the Graham family, this past Thursday. Link safe, goes to Power Line, where Steve Hayward writes:

Forget all the wailing and gnashing of teeth by the left. That’s just for show. Remember that the left was never very enthusiastic about Hillary Clinton, and are not sorry to have seen her lose. Trump’s victory, however, provides the left with something much more important that patronage in Washington DC: it provides them with the supposed evidence to bolster their essential hatred and contempt for America, and endless opportunities to proclaim and parade their supposed moral superiority over their fellow citizens.

Because if there’s one thing that’s a sure business model for success, it’s constantly insulting your customers.

MAKING SCIENCE GREAT AGAIN: Climate researchers hope Trump administration will allow scientific debate instead of enforcing green dogma. James Varney at RealClear Investigations:

Researchers who see global warming as something less than a planet-ending calamity believe the incoming Trump administration may allow their views to be developed and heard. This didn’t happen under the Obama administration, which denied that a debate even existed. Now, some scientists say, a more inclusive approach – and the billions of federal dollars that might support it – could be in the offing.

Of course, the Left’s war on science will continue, because the many scientists-turned-activists and their journalistic allies aren’t going to let up their witch hunts against “deniers,” and there’s too much money at stake. Apocalyptic visions are good for research budgets (and for  green-energy companies dependent on corporate welfare). Varney quotes Richard Lindzen, the MIT atmospheric physicist.

Even if some of the roughly $2.5 billion in taxpayer dollars currently spent on climate research across 13 different federal agencies now shifts to scientists less invested in the calamitous narrative, Lindzen believes groupthink has so corrupted the field that funding should be sharply curtailed rather than redirected.

“They should probably cut the funding by 80 to 90 percent until the field cleans up,” he said. “Climate science has been set back two generations, and they have destroyed its intellectual foundations.”

The field is cluttered with entrenched figures who must toe the established line, he said, pointing to a recent congressional report that found the Obama administration got a top Department of Energy scientist fired and generally intimidated the staff to conform with its politicized position on climate change.

“Remember this was a tiny field, a backwater, and then suddenly you increased the funding to billions and everyone got into it,” Lindzen said. “Even in 1990 no one at MIT called themselves a ‘climate scientist,’ and then all of a sudden everyone was. They only entered it because of the bucks; they realized it was a gravy train. You have to get it back to the people who only care about the science.”

Another swamp to drain.

 

 

 

JOHN KERRY LEAVING WITH A BANG, BUT NOT THE GOOD KIND OF BANG: Adriana Cohen: Look in the mirror Mr. Secretary.

Secretary of State John Kerry wants us to believe that Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu poses the greatest threat to Middle East peace and to a two-state solution — the dream of democratic Jewish and Palestinian states living peacefully side by side.

But it is Kerry himself, with his irresponsible public attack on Israel — on the heels of last week’s cowardly U.S. abstention from the vote on a U.N. Security Council resolution condemning Israel — who poses the greatest threat to peace.

The fact is, the Palestinians have only ever had a one-state solution, and it isn’t a democratic one. It involves Arab Palestinians overrunning Israel, driving out or killing all Jews. It’s what they teach their children. They talk about it openly. They work toward it diligently with suicide bombs, missile attacks and even knives. They refuse to even acknowledge Israel’s right to exist.

Kerry’s speech was meant to chide Israel. But its effect will be to embolden Palestinian terrorists, Hezbollah, Iran and even the Islamic State, all no doubt delighted to see this rift between the nation they like to call the Great Satan and the hated Zionists.

Kerry is blaming the victim at a time when anti-Semitism is dangerously escalating around the world.

You tend to think of Kerry as an amusingly goofy bumbler, but he’s actually dangerous.

Related: Howie Carr: Time for Gigolo John Kerry to dance off the stage.

To think that the Democrats nearly managed to make this guy President.

How bad are things? This bad: Schumer says Kerry may have “emboldened extremists” in his speech. But remember, bad as Kerry is, he’s quite clearly following Obama’s policy.

UPDATE: Peter Wehner: Obama’s Squalid Attack on Israel. Good thing we’ve got Trump coming in, right Peter?

BLESSED ARE THE CHEESEMAKERS: The Foolish Reason The Federal Government Is Storing A Literal Mountain Of Cheese.

For the past few decades, the feds have been keeping a literal mountain of cheese lying around for no ascertainable purpose. As of March 31, about 1.2 billion pounds of excess cheese had been accumulated in commercial cold-storage freezers across the United States — the largest such stockpile in history, according to the Washington Post. That’s 39 pounds of cheese for every man, woman and child in the country — so much cheese, in fact, that the government has been encouraging fast food chains to create new cheesy-centric products just to get rid of some of it.

Perhaps you remember Burger King’s Mac n’ Cheetos, a plate of Cheetos coated in fake macaroni-and-cheese goop, then deep-fried for your sinful pleasure. Yes, that’s a real thing.

So why, you may ask, are the feds subsidizing such monstrosities?

Turns out, the national cheese stockpile is a glaring example of how the federal government’s addiction to subsidies has gotten drastically out of hand.

Read (but don’t eat) the whole thing.

ZOMBIE WRITES THAT TRUMP’S VICTORY IS A PIVOTAL TURNING POINT IN HUMAN HISTORY:

The results of these decades of indoctrination was plainly visible in the college students of today, who are all so left-wing by default that they consider standard Marxism too old-fashioned and conservative. Taking this into consideration, and remembering that the adults of today were the radical students of the recent past, it had seemed that these decades of indoctrination had been resoundingly successful, and that the U.S. electorate had swung wildly to the left, never to swing back, just as the Gramscian brainwashers had been planning and implementing for the last 50 or more years.

Ooops

And then November 8, 2016 happened, and BOOM: It was all revealed to be a lie. Not only did the indoctrination fail, but the general impression that the relentless indoctrination had always been successful was itself a gigantic meta-deception.

All the chatter and statistics and talk show “experts” proclaiming that America had forever swung Democratic? ALL LIES.

All the slanted polls, which were intended to convince everyone that Hillary was inevitable? ALL LIES.

The derision of Trump as a ludicrous fringe candidate and his supporters as wild-eyed extremists? ALL LIES.

And it’s not just that they were all lies — they were lies that had no effect. Somehow, without anyone noticing, a majority of the American populace had evolved a new immunity to progressive disinformation.

So we’re not all socialists now? File this infamous early 2009 cover with the rest of the DNC-MSM’s proverbial fake news:

2009_socialist_newsweek_cover_5-5-13-1

OF COURSE THEY DO: Media Move To Delegitimize Trump’s Win.

Many in the national press have taken on the role of discrediting President-elect Trump’s victory, just days before the Electoral College is set to meet and officially make Trump the next president of the United States.

Because of mounting evidence that Russian hackers stole the emails of Democratic leaders and the FBI’s public condemnation of Hillary Clinton’s private email server, liberal New York Times columnist Paul Krugman said the election was “illegitimate.”

“So this was a tainted election,” he said in an op-ed this week. “It was not, as far as we can tell, stolen in the sense that votes were counted wrong, and the result won’t be overturned. But the result was nonetheless illegitimate in important ways; the victor was rejected by the public, and won the Electoral College only thanks to foreign intervention and grotesquely inappropriate, partisan behavior on the part of domestic law enforcement.”

Last weekend on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” liberal Slate writer Jamelle Bouie also said the hacking had cast a shadow on Trump’s win, rendering it a farce.

Well, if Paul Krugman and Jamelle Bouie think the election of a Republican was illegitimate. . . .

Flashback: “As a journalist of my acquaintance joked on Twitter this week, I’m so old that I remember when it was dangerous and unpatriotic to question the validity of election results.”

I’M SO OLD I REMEMBER WHEN PRESIDENT-ELECT OBAMA WAS PROMISING TRANSPARENCY: Snowden’s ‘Proper Channel’ For Whistleblowing Being Booted From The NSA For Retaliating Against A Whistleblower.

But no worries. As of January 20, 2017, whistleblowing will be patriotic again!

PERSONALLY, I’M AMAZED AT THE SPEED WITH WHICH DISSENT HAS BECOME PATRIOTIC AGAIN: “As a journalist of my acquaintance joked on Twitter this week, I’m so old that I remember when it was dangerous and unpatriotic to question the validity of election results.”