TWO BBCs IN ONE:
—The London Independent, October 22.
TWO BBCs IN ONE:
—The London Independent, October 22.
IT’S COME TO THIS: “BuzzFeed was forced to issue a correction and delete a tweet because their writers and editors are so young they had no clue 1. who Smokey Bear was and 2. what Smokey Bear actually did.”
NEWS YOU CAN USE: Airport And Hotel WiFi Is Much Safer Than It Used To Be.
TOO CLOSE FOR THE MARGIN OF LAWYER: Mia Love Is Out In Utah, McAdams Turns Her Seat Blue.
(Classical reference in headline.)
BRITAIN: WHERE HOMEWORK GETS YOU A VISIT FROM THE COPS. This is utterly horrifying, and totally destructive to academic freedom. But it’s not exactly a strain to imagine clicking on the “wrong” link at a college even in America might get you a visit from the campus “bias response team” in the very near future.
CREEPING SHARIA: Ban on female genital mutilation ruled unconstitutional.
REPRESENTING DICTATORS IS FINE WHEN DEMOCRATS DO IT: Espy Paid Off $267,000 Tax Debt Shortly After Lobbying for Ivory Coast Despot: Mississippi Senate candidate downplays ties to African strongman accused of crimes against humanity.
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CHINA’S XI HAS NEVER BEFORE FACED SUCH AN OPPONENT: When Chinese Communist Party officials allowed an unprecedented level of economic freedom beginning in 1978, they likely had no idea that four decades later it would produce somebody like billionaire Guo Wengui.
Worth an estimated $28 billion, the exiled Guo announced he is creating the Rule of Law Fund and establishing it with an initial budget of $100 million.
“Guo announced the creation of the fund, which will also be used to finance investigations into Chinese government financial activities and those of its supporters in the West, at press conference in New York City on Tuesday,” according to Washington Free Beacon’s Bill Gertz.
“The former Chinese insider also revealed in a presentation for reporters details on the disappearance, imprisonment, or death of 56 prominent Chinese nationals, including the mysterious death in July of Wang Jian, one of China’s wealthiest business leaders.”
Guo also promised the fund will investigate and expose Chinese spies operating in the U.S. and their corporate enablers. The Left’s George Soros may have finally met a Right match.
YOUR DAILY TREACHER: The NYT Has an ‘Angry Uncle Bot’ to Help You Navigate Thanksgiving with Your Family.
In less than a month, the left has gone from melting down over the NPC meme to building their own.
IN THE MAIL: From Theodore Dalrymple & Kenneth Francis, The Terror of Existence: From Ecclesiastes to Theatre of the Absurd.
RACISM, STRAIGHT UP: Missouri Democrat Says Oval Office ‘Needs to be Fumigated’ After Kanye West Visit.
QUESTION ASKED… Why Are Young People Having So Little Sex?
…and answered, by Chanel’s new line of “imperceptible” makeup for, well, boys?
(Hat tip to Kevin Furr on Facebook.)
NOT ALL HATE IS CREATED EQUAL: University clears professor who wrote on Facebook about hating white people.
Airline passengers this Thanksgiving can look to the trending hashtag #MeTooByTSA and the valid citizen’s arrest of ex-TSA screener Michael Gerard Polson for felony sexual battery, to help draw attention to inappropriate, overzealous and excessive force searches by TSA screeners.
While we all want good airport security, the abundance of admitted striking of passengers’ genitals by TSA screeners is not being tracked by TSA. Just like the MeToo movement, #MeTooByTSA seeks to draw attention to abuses of authority, for which TSA admits to paying screeners $250 cash bonuses after they strike or abuse passengers ( https://bit.ly/2Tj5N4s ), encouraging abuse of passengers!
TSA’s excuse in court even cited by the federal court as implausible is that TSA screeners claim to still not know that they should not hit or strike compliant passengers’ testicles or genitals!
There’s nothing funny about official abuse.
CORPORATE VIRTUE SIGNALLING PART DEUX: This time it’s AirBnB deciding to make the world a better place by succumbing to the BDS crowd. The New York Post reports that:
Airbnb says: No Jews allowed. The apartment-sharing service has sided against Israel by banning and delisting the apartments of peaceful Jewish civilians living in Judea and Samaria. And that’s not even the worst part[…] No, the worst part is that Airbnb has singled out Jews, and only Jews, as the one group in the world that is worthy of such censure. That’s what makes its boycott a naked act of corporate anti-Semitism.
With any luck, people will stop doing business with AirBnB. As the Professor says:
“Get Woke, Go Broke.”
OH DRY UP, LOSERS: Thanksgiving a ‘celebration’ of ‘genocide,’ say campus groups.
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LIZ SHELD’S MORNING BRIEF: LA’s Skid Row Voter Scheme and Much, Much More. “So it’s obstruction of justice because Trump had conversations with his advisors about prosecuting Clinton and Comey but didn’t do it? Remember, the Obama administration actually DID THIS. Obama went after the Trump campaign for Hillary with the ‘insurance policy’ and used a salacious and unverified garbage dossier to spy on everyone involved in the Trump campaign.”
That’s different because shut up.
THIS SEEMS PRUDENT: Trump administration paying undercover informants in migrant caravan.
DHS spokeswoman Katie Waldman, in a statement to The Hill, declined to comment on the “sources or methods” that DHS uses to gather intelligence on the migrants. But she added that it would be “malpractice for the United States to be ignorant about the migrants.”
“We have an obligation to ensure we know who is crossing our borders to protect against threats to the Homeland and any indication to the contrary is misinformed,” she added.
And as Jazz Shaw noted on Twitter, “I bet it was dirt cheap, budget-wise.”
WHAT’S FUNNY IS THAT MOST OF THESE SUDDENLY CRITICAL STORIES REALLY COME FROM THE (ALMOST CERTAINLY FALSE) BELIEF THAT FACEBOOK COST HILLARY THE ELECTION: The Decline and Fall of the Zuckerberg Empire. But this is pretty true: “Other tech giants have managed to escape the opprobrium directed at Facebook because they have obviously useful services. Amazon delivers things to your house. Google helps you find things online. Apple sells actual objects. Facebook … helps you get into fights? Delivers your old classmates’ political opinions to your brain?”
But now do Twitter on this metric.
THIS OBVIOUSLY REPRESENTS A THREAT TO OUR DEMOCRACY: New House: More Democrats from California than from 36 other states combined.
“THE CRIME OF PUNISHMENT”: Reading Karl Menninger’s 1966 book—which argues that all punishment is cruel and useless—is itself punishment. But maybe you should take the time to read a bit about it anyway. (Yes, it was the Sixties, but Sixties ideas, along with lava lamps, seem to be back in style.)
TO BE FAIR, IT ISN’T 2020 YET: Even Hillary can’t hold a candle to outsized sore loser Stacey Abrams.
REMEMBER, WHEN THIS HAPPENS IT’S JUST WEATHER, NOT CLIMATE: Bitterly Cold Thanksgiving, Black Friday Will Be Among the Coldest on Record in Parts of the Northeast.
Remember: Fallen Angels is just a novel.
NONSENSE! ALL THE BEST PEOPLE HAVE ASSURED ME THAT VOTING FRAUD IS A MYTH: Election fraud scheme on L.A.’s skid row got homeless to sign fake names for cigarettes and cash, D.A. says.
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PUSHING BACK AGAINST IDENTITY POLITICS IN ACADEMIA: FASORP (Faculty, Alumni and Students Opposing Racial Preferences) recently filed Title VI/Title IX lawsuits against the Harvard Law Review and the New York University Law Review (in both cases Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is also named as a defendant for failing to enforce the law). FASORP is being represented by the very talented Jonathan Mitchell, former Solicitor General of Texas.
The NYU Law Review in particular has made itself a rather obvious target. It’s not just that it discriminates; it has quotas. The Harvard Law Review isn’t much better. It has quotas too, but it is a tad more delicate in how it presents them on its web site.
Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 states, “No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.” Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 is similar, but applies only to educational institutions. It states, “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”
In Grutter v. Bollinger (2003), the Supreme Court watered down Title VI by construing it to allow colleges and universities to discriminate in the name of diversity. But the Court has consistently come down hard on colleges and universities that set actual quotas (UC Regents v. Bakke (1978)) or set numbers of “points” for an applicant’s race (Gratz v. Bollinger (2003)).
The NYU Law Review sets quotas. Its web site declares that it “evaluates personal statements in light of various factors, including (but not limited to) race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, socio-economic background, ideological viewpoint, disability, and age.” It then goes on to state that “Exactly 12 students will be selected by the Diversity Committee” for membership.” Really? Exactly 12?
The Harvard Law Review is only a bit subtler. It sets aside exactly 18 seats for “holistic review,” quickly adding the it is “strongly committed to a diverse and inclusive membership” and that “[a]pplicants who wish to make aspects of their identity available through the Law Review‘s holistic consideration process will have the opportunity to indicate their racial or ethnic identity, physical disability status, gender identity, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status.”
I plan to keep an eye on this litigation.
BURGERS AND FRIES: BEST THING FOR YOU! CDC: Do not eat ANY Romaine lettuce amid E. coli outbreak.
California Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D) and Kamala Harris (D) are utilizing their positions on the powerful Senate Judiciary Committee to try and have a say in who should fill vacancies in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and various district courts.
The two legislators sent a letter to White House Counsel Pat Cipollone to let the Trump administration know that they’re ready and willing to come to a compromise nominees.
Were they able to come up with a reason Trump should want to compromise with them?
JOURNALISM: “BuzzFeed was forced to issue a correction and delete a tweet because their writers and editors are so young they had no clue 1. who Smokey Bear was and 2. what Smokey Bear actually did.” Assigning this error to mere youth is charitable, I think.
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SPOILER: THEY’RE FLEEING. The only options for Illinois millennials: fight or flight.
Dowling calls for Illinois millennials to get engaged. Kudos to him for the wake up call.
But the question of what exactly Dowling wants millennials to fight for remains. He doesn’t make clear whether he favors passing the tough reforms like a constitutional amendment so the state can restructure not-yet-earned pension benefits, or just more tax schemes and the pension “fixes” Pritzker is considering. (More on Pritzker’s progressive tax scheme and his potential pension fixes here, here and here.)
If Dowling favors more taxes and “fixes”, he’ll need to revisit his opinion piece – especially the line where he says, “We are the ones that will shoulder the $129 billion for the foreseeable future.” Dowling wrongly assumes Illinois millennials will stick around to pay the higher tax bills and face the cuts in services. But millennials are highly educated and an extremely tech-savvy generation. They don’t have to stay in Illinois to find their future.
The data already tells us they aren’t.
Illinois has lost a net of 107,000 millennials and their dependents to other states across the nation since 2012, according to the Internal Revenue Service.
It’s a stunning number.
Yes, but hardly shocking. Illinois has probably already entered a fiscal death spiral, and the state will go broke in the two ways made famous by Ernest Hemingway.
HMM: No winners in US-China trade spat — says who? “The EconPol Europe study calculates that Chinese exporters are bearing approximately 75 percent of the costs, meaning that eventually a net gain of $18.4 billion will be added to the US economy. Two factors play a major role in this. The more obvious one is the grave imbalance of the volumes imposed by Washington and Beijing. But what’s no less important is that the US tariffs were levied strategically, making sure it wouldn’t be hard to find substitutions for affected Chinese imports.”
Nonsense. Everyone knows that Trump is just an angry toddler who lashes out with no strategy at all. Of course, the second- and third-order consequences of this sort of thing are largely beyond strategic calculation.
OKAY, IT’S A NAME THAT PARTY, BUT THE INTERESTING THING ABOUT THIS STORY CIRCULATING NOW IS THAT IT NAMES MARCIA FUDGE, WHO WAS CHALLENGING NANCY PELOSI: The many important people who vouched for wife-beater and former judge Lance Mason.
Mason was arrested Saturday after he was identified as a suspect in the fatal stabbing of the ex-wife. Shaker Heights police have charged Mason with felonious assault after he crashed into the SUV of a police officer responding to a harrowing 911 call from Mason’s sister. Mason remained hospitalized Tuesday and police expect to file more charges against him.
Authorities have not said what precipitated Saturday’s deadly attack.
Dozens of letters written on Mason’s behalf between his August 2014 arrest for the first attack on Fraser Mason and when his disciplinary case went before the Ohio Supreme Court in October 2017 showed none of Mason’s friends and colleagues could believe Mason was capable of carrying out such violence once, let alone twice.
U.S. Rep. Marcia Fudge, four current judges who served alongside Mason on the bench, John J. Russo, Hollie Gallagher, Brendan Sheehan and Joan Synenberg, former Judge Ronald Suster, judge-elect Bill McGinty were among those who condemned the attack, but threw the weight of their reputations behind Mason’s character.
Fudge said in her letter, which was addressed to visiting Judge Patricia Cosgrove in August 2015 as Cosgrove prepared to sentence Mason after he pleaded guilty to felonious assault, that she was “deeply saddened” by Mason’s actions, which ran contrary to his reputation as an advocate for his community.
Nancy Pelosi didn’t get to be Nancy Pelosi without knowing how to torpedo challengers.
KABUKI: Ocasio-Cortez Not Sold on Ousting Pelosi Because Pelosi Opponents Not Diverse Enough. “Congresswoman-elect fears that ouster attempt by segment of caucus ‘creates a window where we could potentially get more conservative leadership’.”
That doesn’t seem like much of a risk.
ROGER KIMBALL: The Joy Of Being Right At Thanksgiving.
INTERESTING: Russell Rocks Red Suit in ‘Christmas Chronicles’.
LOOK, IT’S JUST A MEASURE FRENCH REVOLUTIONARIES CAME UP WITH. TO TIE IT TO ANY KIND OF CONSTANT OUTSIDE EARTH IS LIKE INSISTING TODAY IS THE 30TH BRUMAIRE 227. IT DOESN’T MAKE IT MORE EXCITING. IT JUST MAKES US FEEL LIKE YOU’RE UPPING THE ANTE ON CRAZY: Kilogram Untethered from Earthly Objects.
WAY TO TAKE ALL THE FUN OUT OF TERROR CHICKEN: Giant Flightless Birds Were Nocturnal and Possibly Blind.
OH, FOR THE LOVE OF BOB! DO THEY HAVE TO LISTEN TO SOMEONE WHO’D LOSE AN INTELLIGENCE CONTEST TO A HOUSE PLANT: Democrats Debating Ocasio-Cortez Plan to Switch to a Climate Change Command Economy.
BUT BUT BUT BUT IT’S ALL THEY HAVE: Exaggerated Risk and Urgency Redux.
HE’S NOT ACTUALLY WRONG: Trump Jokes During Turkey Pardons: ‘Dems Are Likely to Issue Them Both Subpoenas’.
MORE LIKE HIS DADDY ISSUES: HE DIDN’T KNOW MUST ABOUT HIS REAL FATHER AND WE DON’T KNOW MUCH ABOUT THE CLIMATE. CERTAINLY NOT ENOUGH TO BEND OUR SOCIETY IN TWO TO APPEASE A PHANTOM: Obama Says We Won’t Fight Climate Change Because Of ‘Mommy Issues’
THEY FIND A LOT OF INVISIBLE THINGS: Mis-Measuring Racism: A How-To Guide.
IT’S ALWAYS NICE TO MAKE TWITCHY, especially when the subject is one I’m an expert on: Boobs.
OPEN THREAD: Contemplate the whichness of what.
TIM BLAIR: SCARY CAPITAL LETTERS MELT SNOWFLAKES.
See that headline above? It’d be banned at Leeds Trinity’s school of journalism, where students are apparently alarmed by anything not written in a combination of lower case and emojis:
University lecturers have been told not to use words in capital letters when setting assignments because it might frighten students into failure.
Staff at Leeds Trinity’s school of journalism have also been told to “write in a helpful, warm tone, avoiding officious language and negative instructions” …
Old and busted: England’s brave young men unafraid of the Hun, win two World Wars. The new hotness: capital letters are emotional triggers!
(I hope the students at Leeds can handle the constant barrage of Instapundit’s all-caps headlines, a no-nonsense style from a more civilized era.)
Since the World Scrabble Championship began in 1991, all winners have been male. The North American Scrabble Championship has had one female winner (in 1987) since its founding in 1978. All eight finalists in this year’s French World Scrabble Championships were men. Competitive Scrabble constitutes a natural experiment for testing the feminist worldview. According to feminist dogma, males and females are identical in their aptitudes and interests. If men dominate certain data-based, abstract fields like engineering, physics and math, that imbalance must, by definition, be the result of sexism—whether a patriarchal culture that discourages girls from math or implicit bias in the hiring process.
What are the numbers when it comes to Uposcrabblenyk?
BRINGING NEW MEANING TO “WORKING THE REFS:” Lawsuit Accuses Chicago-Area Parent Of Dressing As Ref, Blames ‘Blatant Cheating’ For Opposing High School Football Team’s Loss.
YOU TRY FOR DECADES TO GET THE FEDERAL COURTS TO PAY ATTENTION TO ENUMERATED POWERS, AND THEY IGNORE YOU. THEN WHEN THEY FINALLY LISTEN, IT’S THIS CASE: Federal judge finds female genital mutilation law unconstitutional.
In a major blow to the government, a federal judge in Detroit has declared the nation’s female genital mutilation law unconstitutional, thereby dismissing nearly all of the charges against two Michigan doctors and seven others accused of subjecting at least nine minor girls to genital cutting in the nation’s first FGM case.
The historic case involves minor girls from Michigan, Illinois and Minnesota, including some who cried, screamed and bled during the procedure and one who was given Valium ground in liquid Tylenol to keep her calm, court records show.
U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman concluded that Congress did not have the authority to pass the 22-year-old federal law that criminalizes female genital mutilation in America. FGM is banned worldwide and has been outlawed in more than 50 countries, though the U.S. statute had never been tested before this case.
Friedman’s ruling stems from a request by Dr. Jumana Nagarwala and her co-defendants to dismiss the genital mutilation charges, claiming the law they are being prosecuted under is unconstitutional.
More specifically, the defendants have argued that “Congress lacked authority to enact” the genital mutilation statute, “thus the female genital mutilation charges must be dismissed.”
I think that’s probably right. But if this stands, a lot of other criminal laws will have to go, and I have some doubts that the federal judiciary will hold to that principle. Eugene Volokh has more.
REVIEW: 2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt.
BURN LEVEL: THERMONUCLEAR.
Progress against malaria has stalled, and the disease remains a significant threat to billions of people despite the expensive, decades-long efforts to contain it, the World Health Organization reported on Monday.
According to the W.H.O.’s latest annual assessment, there were an estimated 220 million cases of malaria last year, and about 435,000 deaths from the disease. Of the dead, 262,000 were children under age 5.
The disease is caused by parasites transmitted to humans by mosquitoes. The world’s malaria rate — which began dropping sharply in the early 2000s as insecticide-impregnated nets, new drugs and much more money were poured into the fight — has been roughly the same since 2013, the report said.
We almost had it eradicated, until the ban on DDT.
NEWS YOU CAN USE: Top 5 ‘Budget-Priced’ .50 BMG Rifles.
MIS-MEASURING RACISM: A How-To Guide.
D. C. MCALLISTER: Actress Ellen Pompeo Shows Lack of Empathy in Call for ‘Inclusivity.’
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FIRST SEXBOTS, NOW THIS: Robots Finally Learning to Clean the Bathroom.
ANALYSIS: TRUE. Everything You Need To Know About Winning A Thanksgiving Argument. “Don’t start one. That’s how you win.”
Pass the gravy, and pass on the Gleichschaltung.
IT’S COME TO THIS: Puberty For The Middle Aged.
CDR SALAMANDER: A Hospital Ship’s Soft Powers Sharp Elbow.
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WHO COULD HAVE SEEN THIS COMING? Chickenpox outbreak at North Carolina school with high anti-vaccination rate leaves dozens sick.
CREEPY ABUSIVE PORN LAWYER UPDATE: Aspiring actress seeks restraining order against Michael Avenatti.
IN MY RECOLLECTION, CHICKS WHO WERE INTO ASTROLOGY WERE DELIGHTFULLY EASY, SO WHAT’S TO HATE? Why Straight Men Hate Astrology So Much. But to be fair, my experience was long ago, in a more pleasant time.
From 2008 to 2018, most of the planned repairs for the Navy’s fleet of about 50 nuclear attack submarines have started late and run long resulting in a combined 10,363 days of maintenance delays and idle time.
“Our analysis found that the primary driver affecting attack submarines are delays in completing depot maintenance,” read the report. “For example, of the 10,363 total days of lost time since fiscal year 2008, 8,472 (82 percent) were due to depot maintenance delays.”
“Although the Navy has shifted about 8 million man-hours in attack submarine maintenance to private shipyards over the past five years, it has done so sporadically, having decided to do so in some cases only after experiencing lengthy periods of idle time,” read the report. “According to private shipyard officials, the sporadic shifts in workload have resulted in repair workload gaps that have disrupted private shipyard workforce, performance, and capital investment—creating costs that are ultimately borne in part by the Navy.”
What a mess.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN HIGH: Colorado adopts stricter emission standards.
Friday’s vote by the Colorado Air Quality Control Commission enacts an executive order by Gov. John Hickenlooper.
Under the rules, new vehicles sold in Colorado must average 36 miles per gallon (15 kilometers per liter) by the year 2025. That’s about 10 miles per gallon (4 kilometers per liter) over the existing standard.
With the vote, Colorado joins several other states in moving pre-emptively to avoid any weakening of federal emissions standards by the Donald Trump administration.
Auto industry representatives oppose the move as too hasty. They say it will drive up the cost of new vehicles and induce car owners to hang onto their older, more polluting, vehicles.
Older cars are inherently less safe, too.
CHRISTIAN TOTO: Spin Machine in Overdrive for McKay’s ‘Vice.’
THE WASHINGTON POST MISSED MY POINT: On Thursday, the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights published a report entitled, Police Use of Force: An Examination of Modern Policing Practices. That same day the Washington Post discussed that report. It also described my dissenting statement as stating “that not enough of the public conversion about criminal justice focuses on the rates at which black Americans commit crime.”
Well … I did mention that issue as a possible partial explanation for why the media are so reluctant to talk about high African American victimization rates. But my main point—and the point that took up by far the most pages in my Statement was that African American are victimized by crime at higher rates than other groups. I dealt at length with discussions by Gunnar Myrdal, Charles Rangel, Michael Javan Fortner and Heather MacDonald that police have not always offered African Americans the level of protection that they should.
I never wrote that the public conversation about criminal justice should focus more on the rate at which African Americans commit crimes. Instead, I wrote that “[o]ne of the best examples” of “one-sidedness in the [criminal justice] debate” is “the failure to acknowledge African American victimhood and the need to ensure that the African-American community receives adequate police protection.” Everything seems to focus on too much police presence.
The Washington Post also stated that I “voiced the theory popular among some conservatives and police officials that increased scrutiny of police will result in them abandoning their obligations to protect the public.” (Italics added.) That’s true (although the word “abandon” overstates my position). But the Post doesn’t identify the views of my Progressive colleagues as “popular among some Progressives.” Maybe this is an example of what Hal Pashler and I wrote about in Perceptions of Newsworthiness Are Contaminated by Political Usefulness Bias. Pointing out that an idea is popular among conservatives may be more useful for a Progressive reporter writing for a Progressive audience than pointing out that a different idea is popular with Progressives. Oh well. At least it’s true.
Lesson: If you’re interested in a topic, read the original, not the newspaper version.
ANALYSIS: TRUE. Brenda Snipes Resigns, But Broward County Needs A Clean Sweep.
PAULA BOLYARD: Ohio Gov. Kasich Announces He Will Veto Heartbeat Bill and Stand Your Ground Measure. “Ohio’s lame-duck governor has turned his attention to another White House bid.”
For which party?
DEFENDING A LIBERTARIAN POSITION ON ANTIDISCRIMINATION LAWS: My latest essay, downloadable at the link: The Boundaries of Antidiscrimination Laws.
IT’S THE ECONOMY, STUPID. For 2020, It’s Trump v. Goldman Sachs, Roger Simon writes.
IN THE MAIL: John Marshall: The Man Who Made the Supreme Court.
JAPANESE ZERO OVER HOMESTEAD: A Japanese Mitsubishi A6M Zero performs at an airshow held at Homestead Air Reserve Base, Florida. The caption doesn’t indicate if the plane is a WW2 Zero restored to flying condition — there are a handful left. Several T-6 Texans have been modified to look like Zeros and fly as Zero replicas.
NOAH ROTHMAN: The Social-Justice Injustice. “What Brett Kavanaugh’s trial by fire was really all about.”
For the social-justice left, Brett Kavanaugh represented a dominant demographic group, and he was therefore due a comeuppance for that reason alone. To those for whom Kavanaugh’s guilt was a foregone conclusion, not only was the presumption of innocence an overly charitable dispensation; so, too, was the notion that he should be allowed to defend himself. At the very least, his most fervent critics appeared to suggest, Kavanaugh should have had the decency to let the allegations against him stand, as a courtesy to his accuser and those like her.
To Quartz’s Ephrat Livni, Kavanaugh wasn’t entitled to “any process” whatsoever. Benjamin Wittes of the Brookings Institution argued that “Kavanaugh cannot blame or attack or seek to discredit a woman who purports to have suffered a sexual-assault at his hands.” If he did, he’d be no better than Harvey Weinstein, smearing his victims in a final, flailing effort to save himself. Yahoo’s Matt Bai said Kavanaugh “makes a victim of [Ford] all over again by essentially calling her delusional.” As a service to the #MeToo moment’s reckoning with the abusive men hiding in plain sight, Bai suggested that Kavanaugh should at least allow for the possibility that he was guilty of a sex crime. Bai even drafted a confession for the judge.
Plus: “This is nothing less than an assault on the rule of law, which is based on the proposition that we judge allegations of malfeasance on a case-by-case basis according to the facts alone.”
Well, yes. But mob rule is always the goal of power-seekers skilled at whipping up mobs.
HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE: Law professor sues University of California to expose anti-Asian preferences.
‘What are they hiding? The data will either exonerate or incriminate UC’
A law professor at UCLA has filed a lawsuit against the University of California System for withholding records he believes could show it’s illegally using race in admissions.
While UC claims it doesn’t have the “specific data set” requested by Richard Sander, the professor told The College Fix that the same kind of data “was provided to us 10 years ago.”
UC gave scholars an “extensive database” that covered admissions from 1992 through 2006, according to a press release by the Asian American Community Services Center, which is suing alongside Sander. UC has “adamantly refused” to provide data from 2007 onward.
Sander believes UC is discriminating against Asian-American applicants based on a 2014 report, commissioned by UCLA, that analyzed five years of admission rates at the Los Angeles campus.
Of course they are.
LTC (USAF, RET.) ROB LEVINSON: What the US Military Owes Stan Lee.
I wasn’t sure what I wanted to be when I grew up, but in my heart of hearts I knew, if I could be anything, I wanted to be Spiderman, one of the X-Men, or the Hulk. Sure, it would be cool to have superpowers, but only if I could use them to help other people. While figuring out how to get bitten by a radioactive spider was pretty difficult, when I decided to join the U.S. military, it was because in the back of my mind I knew that it was the closest I could come to being a superhero. I would get training to fight noble battles defending the weak and the innocent, always on the side of righteousness. Of course, the world is more complicated than a comic book. Still, I can’t help but think that, deep down, so many of the guys I served with, and the kids serving today, are wannabe X-Men hoping that someday they’ll get uniforms as cool as theirs.
When I went off to the Air Force Academy, part of the attraction was all the exciting things I could learn to do there — skydiving, flying planes and gliders, scuba diving. The academy even had opportunities to go train with Navy SEALs and green berets in the summer. And Survival Evasion Resistance and Escape sounded awesome. If that wasn’t a school for superheroes, I don’t know what is.
Once I went out into the force, being an intelligence officer didn’t quite fit the superhero image on most days. But there were some moments. As a 2nd Lt. in 1988, I volunteered to stand watch in Panama, overseeing all U.S. base security forces e.g. MPs, in the country as tensions were running high with the dictator General Noriega. On the second or third night I was on duty, we got a radio call that a Special Forces team deployed in the jungle to document hostile activity was taking enemy fire. A green beret chief warrant officer much older than me, who was working the radios looked at me and asked “What do we do Sir?” At first, I thought he was talking to someone behind me. Then I asked, “Well Chief, what do you recommend?” He told me I could deploy our quick reaction force, known as the “Heavy Team.” I asked if I was allowed to do that, and he said “Sir, right now you are Joint Task Force Panama.” I honestly had no idea if I had the authority to deploy the Heavy Team. I was a 2nd Lt. Air Force intelligence officer and as far as I knew I might be starting a war. But I had American soldiers under fire, and they were asking me for help. I didn’t know what the rules of engagement were, and we couldn’t get ahold of anyone more senior than me to ask.
I didn’t know what I should do, but I sure as hell knew what Captain America or Spiderman would do when people were in danger.
You’ll want to read the whole thing.
HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE: GWU Student Bar Association labels Christian org a ‘hate group.’
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LIZ SHELD’S MORNING BRIEF: Court Sez ‘No’ on Trump Asylum Ban and Much, Much More.
LOL, JOE SCARBOROUGH: ‘Such a fraud’! Joe Scarborough’s past just caught up with him, and boy, is it awkward.
‘No State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate,” declare Article V of the Constitution, which lays out the amendment process. A Californian has only 1/65th the representation of a Wyoming resident in the upper chamber. That’s undemocratic, but there’s no way around Article V.
Or is there? Article IV provides that “new States may be admitted by the Congress into this Union”—including from the territory of an existing state, if its legislature consents. Five states were created in this manner: Vermont from New York (1791), Kentucky from Virginia (1792), Tennessee from North Carolina (1796), Maine from Massachusetts (1820) and West Virginia from Virginia (1863).
Drawing on that tradition, a Democracy Restoration Act could grant blanket consent to populous but underrepresented states to go forth and multiply to restore the Senate’s democratic legitimacy.
Section 1 of the act would provide that whenever the decennial census identifies states with populations that exceed that of the least populous state by more than, say, 20 to 1, each of those largest states would have the option of dividing in half. Section 2 would condition the creation of any such state on the consent of the residents of both halves of the original state.
If, using the 2010 census, we set the trigger at 20 to 1, the six states exceeding 12 million people—California, Texas, New York, Florida, Pennsylvania and Illinois—with about 41% of America’s inhabitants, could split, yielding 12 new senators and dramatically reducing the Senate’s structural inequality. If we set the trigger at 10 to 1, 19 states with more than 70% of the U.S. population could generate 38 senators. Go all the way to 6 to 1—the ratio between the largest and smallest states when the Constitution was ratified—and 29 states yield 58 senators.
I had some related thoughts in my state secession piece, which will be coming out in the Notre Dame Law Review later this year. But my piece was based on “republicanism,” not Neuborne’s idea of democracy. Concern with “democracy” — or as Neuborne puts it, “the Senate’s current undemocratic condition,” is inappropriate with regard to the Senate and historically illiterate.
ANNALS OF LEFTIST AUTOPHAGY: Michigan College Cancels ‘The Vagina Monologues’ Because ‘Not All Women Have Vaginas.’ “The women’s resource center at Eastern Michigan University put the kibosh on the famous production since it caters only to women who have the physical anatomy that accompanies the female sex.”
Remember, when taxpayers tire of subsidizing this sort of thing, we’ll be told it’s because of “anti-intellectualism.”
DEMOCRAT WINS IN CLOSE, LATE COUNT: Ben McAdams claims victory over Mia Love in Utah’s 4th Congressional District. Seems kinda racist and sexist to kick Utah’s only black female member of Congress out of office for a white male, but hey, it’s different when Democrats do it.
DOG BITES MAN: Activists, Democrats, and the Media Keep Smearing Betsy DeVos Over New Title IX Rules. “Misleading reporting makes due process sound like a bad thing.”
The worst example is an article from Abbey Crain, whose article at Alabama.com makes several significant errors.
“Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ proposed changes for how schools handle Title IX cases would allow students accused of sexual assault to cross-examine their victim,” writes Crain.
This is simply untrue. The new rules specify that an accused student’s lawyer or support person must conduct the cross-examination.
“The rules would create a higher burden of proof for victims of sexual assault to prove a Title IX violation occurred,” Crain continues, “removing Obama-era regulations that required a ‘preponderance of the evidence.'”
This isn’t quite right either: Colleges may use a higher burden of proof than the preponderance of the evidence, but it’s not mandatory.
Crain then turns the article over to Madeline Anscombe, a victims’ rights activist who claims the changes would “limit ways students who are sexually assaulted could seek justice.”
But the new rules give students more options for seeking justice. The permit accusers who do not wish to undergo the full-court treatment to seek informal resolution, mediation, restorative justice, or any other option that satisfies both parties. “At any time prior to reaching a determination regarding responsibility the recipient may facilitate an informal resolution process, such as mediation, that does not involve a full investigation and adjudication,” the new rules state.
Perhaps the Title IX activist community wants everyone accused of sexual misconduct to be subjected to life-ruining sanction, but I get the sense that some victims are not actually keen on such an outcome.
Actual victims ought to be fine with this. Women who lie about rape, less so.