A TRUMP-SUPPORTING CONSERVATIVE PRIME MINISTER PULLED OFF A SURPRISE WIN IN AUSTRALIA: “In essence, the left-leaning party was running on the Green New Deal and Morrison won by pointing out that could damage the economy. It remains to be seen whether those results are transferrable to the United States, but you do have some of the same elements in play.”
OUT ON TUESDAY: Mark Levin’s Unfreedom of the Press.
NEW YORK TIMES ON NEW ABORTION LAWS: RALPH NORTHAM WHO?
Mr. Trump is using the issue to rouse his base, including the crucial voting bloc of Christian conservatives for whom abortion is an overarching issue. His false statements that Democrats would “execute” newborn babies — which he has repeated on his Twitter feed, during his State of the Union address and at campaign rallies, sometimes as he mimics swaddling a baby — are being picked up and repeated by conservatives all over the country.”
Catch that description? That the President is making “false statements that Democrats would ‘execute’ newborn babies.”
And right there this story becomes a jewel of an example of left-wing journalism by omission, in this case from the New York Times.
Missing entirely from the article was the name of Virginia Democratic Governor Ralph Northam. It was Northam, appearing on a radio show, who stirred the hornets nest by saying this about aborting babies when the mother is in labor. The direct quote was this, as reported here at National Review Online:
“If a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen,” he continued. “The infant would be delivered. The infant would be kept comfortable. The infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother.”
Here’s video of Northam uttering those words shortly before his medical school era blackface scandal erupted.
Speaking of the latter, as a Times headline noted in early April: ‘‘It Just Went Poof’: The Strange Aftermath of Virginia’s Cascade of Political Scandals.
The passive tense in the headline is telling. The Times can keep a story alive when it wants to, such as when the Gray Lady ran nearly 100 stories on the Augusta National Golf Club between 2001 and mid-2003. Similarly, the paper in Northam’s backyard ran approximately 100 stories in the fall of 2006 on George Allen’s “macaca” gaffe. The media’s selective amnesia on Northam’s blackface and endorsement of infanticide might lead a cynical person to conclude that they’re Democratic Party operatives with bylines, or something.
REBUILDING A CHURCH: “The rebuilding of Notre-Dame promises at least a decade of public battles, likely to polarize both sides in a battlefield that regards it as a historic monument of touristic significance on one side, and as a sacred place on the other. I am not an optimist, so I do not imagine either side being satisfied with the outcome.”
Read the whole thing.
JEFF CARTER: Big Tech’s Tragedy of the Commons. “As the onion is peeled, there are certain practices that tech companies engage in that would make any free market libertarian with no political ideology squeamish.”
OPEN THREAD: Express yourself.
“REMEMBERING NOTHING, LEARNING NOTHING:” How the FBI Broke the Rules Using Christopher Steele.
YOUR DAILY TREACHER: Fran Lebowitz: ‘We Should Turn Trump Over to the Saudis’ Who Killed Khashoggi.
Look, I’m fine with people joking about whatever they want to joke about. But if I’m “inciting violence” by merely criticizing a Democrat — hi, Ilhan! — then something like this is definitely “inciting violence.” And if you say it, just own it. Don’t claim you were “misinterpreted.” You weren’t.
Earlier: Bernie Bro James T. Hodgkinson, Attempted Assassin Of Steve Scalise, Already Being Erased From History. And additional examples of leftist violence and eliminationist rhetoric at the link.
THE GOOGLE CITY THAT HAS ANGERED TORONTO:
It was meant to be a vision of how we will all live in future — a smart city built from the internet up — offering citizens the chance to experience the very latest technology.
That would include autonomous cars, innovative ways to collect rubbish and shared spaces for communities to come together in new ways.
Sidewalk Labs, a sister company to Google, had acquired disused land in Toronto, Canada for this bold urban experiment, which it hoped would become a model for other cities around the world.
The fact that it would be collecting a lot of data from sensors placed all around the harbourside development unsettled some.
Now many are asking whether a private firm should take charge of urban improvement at all.
* * * * * * * *
“We have not been talking about the fact that it is normalising massive data collection or even asking whether anyone wants this thing at all. No-one here has asked for a sensor-laden neighbourhood,” she said.
“Our waterfront must be developed for the benefit of the citizens of Toronto, not the shareholders of a Google-affiliate.”
Related: Alphabet’s smart neighborhood could have shape-shifting ‘superblocks.’
Too many cities are built around cars rather than people. Sidewalk Labs, an offshoot of Google’s parent company Alphabet, wants its smart neighborhood in Toronto to be different. It’s considering a so-called superblock concept, modeled after Barcelona’s, that bundles smaller streets together and limits vehicles to the perimeter. The smaller lanes inside each superblock would then become safer, quieter spaces for pedestrians and cyclists. Sidewalk Labs wants to go a step further, though, with real-time traffic monitoring and movable street furniture. These would allow the company to create smart, dynamic superblocks that subtly change with the time of day and needs of its residents.
So it’s the spying and data collection of 1984 meets the urban “tuning” of the 1998 film Dark City. That’s not creepy at all.
RIP: The famous architect I.M. Pei has died at the age of 102.
To get a sense of what Pei’s architecture could do to an American city, check out the early 1970s video of an Oklahoma City urban renewal project embedded in this 2016 Bleat by James Lileks: “Rah-rah as you’d expect. A local booster takes a money-man and his wife around town to show what they’re doing, and when he mentioned ‘The Pei Plan’ I stopped the video. That would be I. M. Pei. That would be the last guy I wanted designing my downtown.” As Lileks writes, “This is about building things, yes. But more about destroying them.”
GERMAN CROSSBOW VICTIMS WERE PART OF MEDIEVAL SEX CULT.
Ayn Rand beabsichtigte nicht, dass die Rückkehr des Primitiven eine Anleitung sein sollte.
JULIETTE “BALDILOCKS” OCHIENG COULD USE SOME HELP. I donated.
FEDERAL FUNDING FOR CALIFORNIA BULLET TRAIN BOONDOGGLE FORMALLY CANCELED: “The Federal Railroad Administration yesterday formally terminated a $929 million grant to help pay for the construction of a high-speed rail line that was originally supposed to link Los Angeles and San Francisco… The feds are also still seriously considering trying to force California to pay back $2.5 billion of federal funds that have already been spent. So the skyrocketing costs of this trainwreck may eventually include repaying $2.5 billion to Washington.”
Earlier: California’s High-Speed Rail Disaster Is a ‘Shot Across the Bow for the Green New Deal.’
BREAKING: BIG ELECTION UPSET IN AUSTRALIA: “Already I’m seeing the left blame their defeat on Rupert Murdoch. But maybe the ‘message to the world’ should be that climate change is not a vote winner. Let’s see whether this augurs any change in the left’s fanaticism for the ‘green nude eel’ here at home, not to mention the upcoming European parliamentary elections, and a prospective general election in Britain.”
STANLEY BLACK & DECKER INVESTING $90M TO SHIFT MORE CRAFTSMAN PRODUCTION BACK TO U.S.: “Stanley Black & Decker announced on Wednesday that it was investing $90 million in a plant in Texas – a move aimed at continuing its effort to shift production of a range of Craftsman products back to the U.S. The new 425,000-square-foot facility will be located in Fort Worth, where tools ranging from sockets, ratchets, wrenches to general sets will be produced.”
GOD BLESS AMERICA:
The song is a kind of prayer, asking for God’s blessing and guidance, while giving thanks for the beauty and sweetness of this our continental home. Those surrounding oceans were not wide enough to prevent world war from finding America again. And through World War II, as it had through the Great Depression, Kate Smith’s voice “cheered her countrymen through the darkest days,” to quote the Los Angeles Times’s obituary of her. She traveled more than 500,000 miles to entertain troops and sold more War Bonds than any other show-business figure—$600 million worth in the course of the war.
But in the 21st Century gratitude has gone out of style, along with all sense of proportion. Of the almost 3,000 songs she recorded, and the 1,000 or so she herself introduced, the P.C. detectives have found two that must be condemned for indulging racial stereotypes. Fine. Yet somehow as a result, the New York Yankees have tossed her classic version of “God Bless America,” which they used to play in the seventh-inning stretch. They believe in “erring on the side of sensitivity,” they explained.
The Philadelphia Flyers have banned the patriotic tune from the beginning of their hockey games, where they put it (supplanting “The Star-Spangled Banner,” incidentally) decades ago in a desperate quest for victory. When they played it, they tended to win. After Miss Smith sang it in person, they won the Stanley Cup in 1974, and repeated in 1975. The grateful Flyers erected a statue to her outside their arena. The ungrateful Flyers have now removed her statue.
It’s not as though she ever donned blackface or a Klan robe, offenses which we know would shame even the most hardened Democratic politicians into instantly resigning their office.
Heh — Ralph Northam could not be reached for comment.
ANNALS OF LEFTIST AUTOPHAGY: The Coming Democrat Civil War.
WAR IS PEACE, FREEDOM IS SLAVERY: NYT Sees Fascism in Europe: ‘Nihilism,’ ‘Meanness,’ Opposing Food Cops.
As George Orwell wrote in 1944, “It will be seen that, as used, the word ‘Fascism’ is almost entirely meaningless. In conversation, of course, it is used even more wildly than in print. I have heard it applied to farmers, shopkeepers, Social Credit, corporal punishment, fox-hunting, bull-fighting, the 1922 Committee, the 1941 Committee, Kipling, Gandhi, Chiang Kai-Shek, homosexuality, Priestley’s broadcasts, Youth Hostels, astrology, women, dogs and I do not know what else.”
PAST PERFORMANCE IS NO GUARANTEE OF FUTURE RESULTS:
—The Grauniad, yesterday.
● Chaser: “President Obama ‘has four years to save Earth.’”
—Headline, The Grauniad, January 18, 2009.
The “Siberian” climate was predicted just four years after the London Independent assured its readers that “Snowfalls are now just a thing of the past.”
ATTACKS ON SCHOOLS AREN’T NEW: On this day in 1927, at approximately 8:45 a.m., in Bath, Michigan, Andrew Kehoe, a 55-year-old school board treasurer, remotely detonated the dynamite he had hidden in the basement of the Bath Consolidated School. The explosion killed 38, mostly elementary schoolchildren. Little bodies were torn apart.
Frantic parents converged on the school, searching through the rubble for their children. Many lost more than one child.
Kehoe was on a rampage. Earlier that day he had blown up his own house and farm. And at some time earlier that day or the day before he had murdered his wife Nellie.
The rampage ended about a half hour after the school explosion when Kehoe drove back to the school grounds. After beckoning to the school superintendent to come near, he detonated the dynamite in his truck. The resulting explosion killed Kehoe himself, the superintendent, two other adults and eight-year-old Cleo Clayton, who had survived the school explosion.
I have a hard time asking why Kehoe acted as he did. It seems like a senseless question. The best that the townspeople could say was that Kehoe had always been a difficult man and that lately he had been angered by his defeat in the election for township clerk. Oh … and he was upset by a recent tax increase.
He was a loon … just like the rash of more recent killers.
LIFE UNDER LATE SOCIALISM: Venezuela’s Collapse Is the Worst Outside of War in Decades, Economists Say.
But look what’s missing from the NYT report:
BOLD, INDEPENDENT LEADERSHIP: Buttigieg Backs Out Of Dave Rubin Interview After Media Backlash.
As Rubin tweets, “My invite for @PeteButtigieg remains. If he caves to Media Matters, Vox and HuffPo that isn’t a good sign for a presidential candidate. Doing what’s right often means standing up to the mob.”
To be fair, I can certainly understand why Democratic Party operatives with bylines want to limit Buttigieg’s exposure to interviewers: “Buttigieg compared Christianity to radical Islam on Friday during a radio interview with Hugh Hewitt.”
Buttigieg made the remarks when Hewitt asked him which form of Islamic extremism he thought posed the greatest overall threat.
“Do you find Iranians’ variant of Shia extremism to be more dangerous to the world than the Sunni variant that we see in the Taliban and perhaps in Hamas and some of the more radical elements of Wahhabism?” Hewitt asked.
“Well, you know, not unlike Christianity when it is motivating someone to do something extreme,” Buttigieg responded. “It can have a thousand different flavors.”
Deplorable, as Hillary would say.
‘I HATE ALL OF YOU’: JUNO WRITER REGRETS THAT HER MOVIE WAS PRO-LIFE.
Chiu writes that “having her breakout movie be associated with antiabortion messaging is a regret that has troubled [Diablo Cody] for years.”
And who could blame her? You try sleeping at night with all those live babies haunting your conscience.
“In a way I feel like I had a responsibility to maybe be more explicitly pro-choice, and I wasn’t,” Cody said during a Planned Parenthood benefit event in 2017 marking the film’s 10th anniversary, Vanity Fair reported. “I think I took the right to choose for granted at the time.”
“I didn’t think it was ever going to get made,” she said. “I wasn’t thinking as an activist. I wasn’t thinking politically at all.”
And if we take no other lesson from this sad story, let it be that — a good progressive is always an activist. She thinks politically 100% of the time and is always on guard against incursions of normal human feeling and thought.
According to Chiu, Cody quickly saw the error of her ways when she got “A letter from her Catholic high school thanking her for “writing a pro-life movie,” she said, describing it as the “most horrifying thing.” The piece added:
“I was like, I … hate all of you, and I’m as pro-choice as a person can possibly be,” she said.
“I … hate all of you.” Clearly, Cody’s once again a progressive in good standing.
Why is leftism such a cesspit of oikophobia?
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THE NEW GREEN SERFDOM: The Green New Deal is a path to a more militarized and authoritarian society.
Much has rightly been made of the Green New Deal’s fuzzy-headed utopianism and its impossible goal of reducing U.S. greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero in 10 years. But we should also pay close attention to the plan’s authoritarian impulses, particularly in light of its historical inspirations: Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal and the command economy he established during the Second World War.
If proponents of the Green New Deal are serious—and there’s no reason to doubt them*—then they’re proposing a return to a militaristic America where Uncle Sam’s heavy hand intervenes in all aspects of life, curtailing individual freedom in pursuit of their collectivist goals. And like the planners of the Roosevelt years, their intentions are clear and grandiose: They want the power to regiment a society of nearly 330 million people in pursuit of a pipe dream they liken to a war for survival.
Well yes, the moral equivalent of war has been the unifying philosophy of the left for over a century, as Jonah Goldberg wrote in a February article titled “Everyone a Conscript.” “[E]ver since the philosopher William James gave his lecture ‘The Moral Equivalent of War’ in 1906, the agenda of 20th-century liberalism has been an exercise in trying to decouple the benefits of war from the bloody bits.”
To be fair, there’s good reason to doubt how serious AOC is: So AOC Was Just Kidding When She Said We Only Have 12 Years Left?
ARSON SUSPECTED IN THREE FIRES AT JEWISH CENTERS: “Fires at Jewish centers in Massachusetts were deliberately set, authorities now believe. Two were an hour apart, and two struck one house the same week.”
NEW CIVILITY WATCH: Fran Lebowitz Apologizes After Telling Bill Maher U.S. Should Give Donald Trump To Saudis Who Killed Khashoggi. “Lebowitz said she regrets that ‘everyone misinterpreted’ her comment onb Bill Maher’s Real Time Friday night, when she suggested the U.S. turn President Donald Trump ‘over to the Saudis, his buddies – the same Saudis who got rid of that reporter. Maybe they could do the same for him,’ she told Maher, who had asked if she favored impeaching the president.”
Flashback: From “Kill Bush” to #AssassinateTrump: The return of assassination fascination.
OPEN THREAD: Disport yourselves in the comments.
AND AGAIN: Twitter arbitrarily bans Babalú Blog website, but Cuban dictatorship propaganda websites are still welcome.
Different day, new excuse. And yes, I know that isn’t a valid URL for babalu blog: I couldn’t even post the name with a dot.
and then like magic:
KRISTINA BAUM IS RUNNING THE RACE OF HER LIFE: And all the while dealing with hostile journalists covering Congress. This young lady is tough, humble and full of faith.
LEFT WING FASCISM NEVER DISAPPOINTS: “Mass. teacher accused of planting live ammo at school, then calling police.” If the facts don’t fit your narrative, then invent the facts. Remember, it’s “for the children”:
“Southbridge police said high school biology teacher Alfred Purcell III, 57, of Woodstock, Connecticut, reported to staff that he had just found one live round of 9 mm ammunition in the rear stairwell. The school was placed on lock down. During the lockdown, police and Southbridge High School staff reviewed video footage and saw Purcell removing the live round of ammunition from his pocket, dropping it on the floor and quickly leaving the area, police said.
About 10 minutes later, the video shows Purcell standing over the ammunition and taking a picture of it with a cellphone, police said.”
Like Stalin said: “If you want to make an omelette, you have to break a few eggs.”
Or as one of his current admirers put it: “I think that there’s a lot of people more concerned about being precisely, factually, and semantically correct than about being morally right.”
THE MAIN PROBLEM IS THAT SHE WASN’T A PREGNANT MAN: Blurred lines: A pregnant man’s tragedy tests gender notions.
When the man arrived at the hospital with severe abdominal pains, a nurse didn’t consider it an emergency, noting that he was obese and had stopped taking blood pressure medicines. In reality, he was pregnant — a transgender man in labor that was about to end in a stillbirth.
The tragic case, described in Wednesday’s New England Journal of Medicine, points to larger issues about assigning labels or making assumptions in a society increasingly confronting gender variations in sports , entertainment and government. . . .
“The point is not what’s happened to this particular individual but this is an example of what happens to transgender people interacting with the health care system,” said the lead author, Dr. Daphna Stroumsa of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
“He was rightly classified as a man” in the medical records and appears masculine, Stroumsa said. “But that classification threw us off from considering his actual medical needs.”
If your classification rules out a serious medical issue that you in fact suffer from, then you’re not “rightly classified.” And when you have a news story that reads: “Moments later, the man delivered a stillborn baby,” well, your classifications systems aren’t working right.
MEANWHILE, OVER AT VODKAPUNDIT: The Coming Democrat Civil War. “Remember Steve’s Second Law of Holes: When your opponent is in one, get him a bigger and nicer shovel.”
YOU DON’T SAY: Many Democrats Exaggerated Mental Distress After 2016 Election.
“Our research suggests that for many Democrats, expressing mental distress after the election was a form of partisan cheerleading,” write researchers Masha Krupenkin, David Rothschild, Shawndra Hill and Elad Yom-Tov in their findings. “Clearly, many Democrats were, and are, upset about the Republican victory in 2016; these findings do not invalidate those feelings but put their depth and related actions into perspective.”
This so-called “reverse” cheerleading occurs when a person misreports or exaggerates a condition publicly in order to show support for their affiliated group, or in this case, their political party. The authors say that a person’s actions in private reveal their true condition, however, and for the study, that can be determined by evaluating private search terms. In other words, a person who might describe suffering psychological distress on social media or to their friends, but doesn’t search for any type of help or relief, is more likely showing a form of reverse cheerleading.
It’s minor neuroticism dressed up as severe neuroticism, which is the lamest kind of virtue-signaling.
HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE: SAT to Give Students ‘Adversity Score’ to Capture Social and Economic Background.
The College Board plans to assign an adversity score to every student who takes the SAT to try to capture their social and economic background, jumping into the debate raging over race and class in college admissions.
This new number, called an adversity score by college admissions officers, is calculated using 15 factors including the crime rate and poverty levels from the student’s high school and neighborhood. Students won’t be told the scores, but colleges will see the numbers when reviewing their applications.
Fifty colleges used the score last year as part of a beta test. The College Board plans to expand it to 150 institutions this fall, and then use it broadly the following year.
How colleges consider a student’s race and class in making admissions decisions is hotly contested. Many colleges, including Harvard University, say a diverse student body is part of the educational mission of a school. A lawsuit accusing Harvard of discriminating against Asian-American applicants by holding them to a higher standard is awaiting a judge’s ruling. Lawsuits charging unfair admission practices have also been filed against the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the University of California system.
So basically this is a dodge to allow them to continue unlawful race discrimination. And as I recall, the lefty regime in Kurt Schlichter’s People’s Republic used something like that, which is unpromising.
AUTOMATION: Autopilot was active when a Tesla crashed into a truck, killing driver.
Jeremy Banner was driving his Model 3 on a divided four-lane highway in Palm Beach County, Florida. As the car approached a driveway, a semi truck pulled out in front of the car, making a left-hand turn from the driveway to the opposite travel lanes.
The Tesla was moving at 68mph (110km/h) and slid under the truck’s trailer. The trailer sheared off the top of the car, killing Banner. The vehicle continued down the road for another 1,600 feet (500m) before coming to a rest in the median.
“Preliminary data show that the Tesla’s Autopilot system… was active at the time of the crash,” the NTSB reports. “The driver engaged the Autopilot about 10 seconds before the collision. From less than 8 seconds before the crash to the time of impact, the vehicle did not detect the driver’s hands on the steering wheel.”
The NTSB says that preliminary data suggests that neither the driver nor the Autopilot system made evasive maneuvers.
Automated driving still feels like a solution in search of a problem.
WHEN SOME FILMS ARE BANNED, ONLY OUTLAWS WILL HAVE BANNED FILMS:
The prerecorded disc market is about to disappear. At some point in the near future, UHD Blu-ray, Blu-ray, and standard DVDs will no longer be sold by Amazon and other retailers because most content will be available for streaming in very high definition.
* * * * * * * *
When the day comes that only a handful of major streaming services – Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, and soon Disney and Apple and others that fund the creation of content and control the content that you are able to view — then some films and television series that are now or in the future considered politically incorrect will begin to disappear.
It’s not just the work itself being considered “politically incorrect,” the left wants entire oeuvres of problematic men tossed down the memory hole, no matter the actual product. With Maoist Cancel Culture in full bloom among the modern left, a lot of stuff is going to be disappeared. Or as Christian Toto writes at the Hill, “Could problematic films eventually be pulled from home video and streaming services? Sound hysterical? It’s currently in vogue to tear down statues that don’t align with current groupthink. So why would pop culture artifacts be spared? In fact, it’s already been done.”
‘TEARS, LAUGHS AND A GREAT ENDING!’ BIG BANG THEORY FANS REACT TO SERIES FINALE.
The plot points the two-part episode hit were almost entirely predictable, but the writing (especially in the first half) was much better than most of the recent episodes, as this show had been running on fumes for some time. Did you watch the finale? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.
GAMING THE SAT: Grievance Proxies. The College Board adds a tweak to the SAT score to placate diversocrats desperate to admit students by race instead of competence. Heather Mac Donald of City Journal analyzes the racial gap in SAT scores that colleges are trying to ignore.
YES: The Best Brexit Strategy Is To Leave First, And Then Deal.
The next prime minister should first affirm Britain’s decision to leave. He or she can do so either under the terms of Article 50 of the Treaty of the European Union or, better yet, by abrogating the treaty altogether.
Although Clause 1 of the Treaty of the European Union affirms that member countries may decide to leave the European Union unilaterally “in accord with their own constitutional requirements,” the fine print in subsequent clauses complicates that process. In particular, Clause 2 requires the leaving nation to negotiate an exit deal with the European Council of Ministers or with whichever EU entity the council designates to represent it.
In Britain’s case, that has meant dealing with the unelected European Commission, whose sole interest has long been advancing the project of European political integration. The exit deal May negotiated with the commission reflects those priorities and May’s tepid support for a genuine Brexit that restores British Parliamentary democracy. (Since 1973 when Britain joined the European Economic Community (EEC), the EEC and the EU, its courts, and various agencies have imposed more than 20,000 laws on the British public with the British Parliament powerless to stop them.)
The point of Brexit wasn’t to reduce trade, but to reduce EU interference in British sovereignty. The whole purpose of the EU (as opposed to the earlier EEC) is to reduce member states’ sovereignty. That’s why negotiating a good “out” was always an impossibility, and why May — a reluctant Brexiteer at best — was the wrong person trying to do the wrong job the wrong way.