Tuesday, May 22, 2018

(04:00 AM)

YOU AIN’T ALONE, BROTHER:  Derek Hunter: I Used to be Skeptical of the Existence of a “Deep State.” I’m All Out of Skepticism Now.

(03:30 AM)

SURE.  THIS WILL END WELL:  Robots can now grow human organs.

(03:00 AM)

BUT WHAT PRECISELY DO THEY WANT TO DO THERE?  China takes giant step toward landing on far side of moon.

(02:30 AM)

NOT SINCE FIRST SON WAS BORN.  STILL PRETTY HAPPY. HOPEFULLY BACK PROBLEMS DON’T SET IN:  This bra size reportedly makes women the happiest.

(02:05 AM)

IGNORING YOUR LOCAL LANDMARKS AS “TOO TOURISTY” IS QUINTESSENTIALLY AMERICAN:  Americans aren’t great at visiting their own landmarks.

(01:32 AM)

OKAY, CRIME DOES SOMETIMES PAY (I WONDER WHAT’S ON DISPLAY IN THE DEALER ROOM?):  The convention where fans go to relish tales of rape and murder.

Monday, May 21, 2018

(11:21 PM)

KAREN MCQUILLAN: Outside The Defensible Perimeter. “Five years ago, my husband and I bought a house in the emptiest county in America. We went there because the night sky is so dark, you can walk in the high desert by starlight and cast a shadow, so dark you can see distant galaxies and the zodiacal light. Three types of people live in our rural area: amateur astronomers, ranchers, and illegal aliens. . . . It is not even a secret that the 60 miles between the border and Interstate 10 are treated as a no man’s land. We live and vote and pay taxes in America, but the government acts as if we are beyond the defensible perimeter of the country. Border Patrol is everywhere, but even with President Trump, they are just going through the circular motions of catch and release.”

(10:23 PM)

IN WHICH MARK LEVIN AGREES WITH PROF. CALABRESI: Appointment of Mueller violates Constitution.

(10:21 PM)

AT AMAZON, deals on Men’s Underwear.

(09:30 PM)

OPEN THREAD: Frolic away.

(09:00 PM)

21ST CENTURY HEADLINES: Nanoparticles derived from tea leaves destroy lung cancer cells: Quantum dots have great potential.

(08:00 PM)

I THINK THESE REALLY WORK FOR SOME PEOPLE, BUT THAT THEY’RE WILDLY OVERPRESCRIBED: Unnecessary and accidental use of ADHD drugs increases over 60%, study suggests.

(07:00 PM)

AT AMAZON, save in Arts Crafts and Sewing.

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(06:59 PM)

MY USA TODAY COLUMN: Inoculating Ourselves Against The School Shooting Meme.

(06:34 PM)

FASTER, PLEASE: Scientists In Massachusetts And Beyond Are Working To Slow The Aging Process.

At a forum on Cape Cod earlier this month, Harvard scientist David Sinclair had the rapt attention of biotech executives and investors as he described treating 20-month-old mice with a molecule to restore their youthfulness. Before long, the geriatric rodents were outracing 2-month-old mice.

Yes, Sinclair told his audience, “We can turn an old mouse into a healthy young mouse.”

The Fountain of Rodent Youth feat, outlined in March in the scientific journal Cell, hasn’t been replicated with humans. But researchers, who have long scoffed at the anti-aging claims made by companies pitching dubious products, are warming to the idea that serious science can be deployed to increase human longevity.

Ambitious efforts are underway in Massachusetts and beyond to develop the first government-approved drugs to stretch healthy life spans. Some researchers are scrambling to repurpose a diabetes medicine to target age-related diseases. Others are working to boost levels of a key protein to increase blood flow and endurance, or to find a way to kill “zombie cells” that can send out toxins that cause age-related maladies.

These approaches and others are part of an emerging field known as geroscience. Its advocates believe that the best way to treat a variety of illnesses — from cancers and heart disease to Alzheimer’s and macular degeneration — is to attack the aging process itself.

“Aging is the biggest risk factor for many diseases,” said Eric Verdin, president of the Buck Institute for Research on Aging in Novato, Calif., where scientist Gordon Lithgow coined the term geroscience in 2007. “Right now, we’re treating diseases in silos. But if we tinker with the pathways that control life span, we can address a whole range of diseases.”

Well, hurry up. None of us is getting any younger.

(06:00 PM)

WELL, THIS IS THE 21ST CENTURY, YOU KNOW: AI detects stroke, dementia from brain scans.

(05:32 PM)

DISPATCHES FROM THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE: University of Michigan brings back the Soviet Union with its bias response team.

I’m pretty darn sure that when Iowahawk tweeted, “College: an oasis of totalitarianism in a desert of freedom” back in 2014, he wasn’t proposing the first sentence of an administrative how-to guide.

(05:17 PM)

YOUR DAILY TREACHER: Hillary Still Ain’t Over It. “I’m trying to remember a failed presidential candidate before now who made a second career out of whining about losing an election.”

Would she be whining any less had she won?

(05:04 PM)

LONG-TIME LURKER, FIRST-TIME POSTER: I’m Robert Shibley, the executive director of FIRE (and author of Twisting Title IX). As a daily follower of Instapundit from almost the very beginning, I couldn’t be more excited to be here.

(05:00 PM)

NEWS YOU CAN USE: 9 Penis Facts Revealed. You know, with all the vagina-worship we’ve had lately, maybe penises should get equal time.

(04:57 PM)

21ST CENTURY HEADLINES: Transgender Files $50K Complaint After Muslim Woman Refuses to Wax Genitals.

(04:44 PM)


Some hear a man with important ideas that can help people live a more fulfilling life, others hear a dangerous misogynist who wants to set back the cause of liberated women, trans people, and the rest of the cast(e) of oppression. In a feature for The New York Times Magazine this weekend, Nellie Bowles clearly came down on the latter side.

* * * * * * * *

He also addressed it on his blog: “My critics’ abject ignorance of the relevant literature does not equate to evidence of my totalitarian or misogynist leanings.” The important thing here is that Peterson assumed his interviewer was up on anthropological terms of art. That’s never a good bet for journalists. We are mostly known for not paying for lunch.

Peterson blames Bowles for not being familiar with the relevant literature, but “enforced monogamy,” is not a well-known term of art, and it does sound menacing. Bowles probably should have asked for clarification before presenting it as absurd, but Peterson also has to know and anticipate that these kinds of attacks are going to be leveled at him by people who may be ill-informed in anthropology, but nonetheless well-intentioned.

I’d like to think that Bowles went into her profile with the intent to be “well-intentioned,” but her boss’s past comments regarding those who make up a wide swatch of Peterson’s followers cast a certain amount of doubt.

And that’s quite a large group: Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life remains #1 most read on Amazon.

(04:32 PM)

GET WOKE, GO BROKE: Kelly Clarkson Opens Billboard Music Awards by Demanding ‘Action’ Against School Shootings.

She admitted she was supposed to begin the show with “a moment of silence,” but she rejected the idea, saying moments of silence are “not working.” She suggested a “moment of action” and of “change” instead.

* * * * * * * *

Clarkson did not reference gun control in calling for “action” and “change,” but gun control was the celebrity mantra from the moment that news of the Santa Fe High School shooting broke.

The problem with pushing gun control, or any “action” and “change” that may include gun control, is that the alleged Santa Fe gunman made a mockery of the left’s gun control proposals. Their go-to controls are an “assault weapons” ban, a “high-capacity” magazine ban, universal background checks, and waiting periods on gun purchases. But the alleged gunman was too young to purchase guns, so waiting periods and universal background checks would be pointless. Moreover, Gov. Greg Abbott (R) said the attacker used a .38 revolver and a shotgun, so an “assault weapons” ban and a “high-capacity” magazine ban would not have hindered the attack in the least.

But was anybody watching? “Time-zone adjusted numbers put the 2018 Billboard Music Awards at a 2.4 rating in adults 18-49 and 7.9 million viewers. That is a new low for the awards show in the key demo,” Variety reports. “It is also a decrease of approximately 8% in the demo and 9% in total viewers compared to the 2017 ceremony.”

(04:16 PM)

AT AMAZON, Instant Pot DUO60 6 Qt 7-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Steamer, Sauté, Yogurt Maker and Warmer.

(04:11 PM)

NEWS YOU CAN USE: Five facts you need to know about cannabis beer.

(04:01 PM)

THE RUSSIANS ARE COMING! THE RUSSIANS ARE COMING!: No, Reagan historian and consumate political public relations adviser Craig Shirley isn’t talking about that mediocre 1966 movie of the same name. Shirley, writing in LifeZette today, is referring to the growing scandal in 2018 surrounding the FBI, Stef Halper and the 2016 Trump presidential campaign.

(04:00 PM)


(03:00 PM)

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(02:59 PM)

MY USA TODAY COLUMN: Inoculating Ourselves Against The School Shooting Meme.

(02:57 PM)

BRUCE BAWER: A Russian’s Devastating Verdict on Norway.

(02:30 PM)

FASTER, PLEASE: Experimental universal flu vaccine begins second phase of testing in U.S.: Report. Though I worry a bit that if we successfully deploy such a vaccine for many years, and then an impervious strain of flu evolves, people will have much lower immunity to flu in general so that it could be almost a “virgin field” outbreak. But perhaps my concerns are unfounded.

(02:26 PM)

PRIVACY: I Tried to Watch a Video of a Puppy and Accidentally Sent Every Photo I’ve Ever Taken to Google.

I recently went to a concert, had a few beers, and woke up with a hangover and a notification that my phone had successfully uploaded 15,000 images and videos to Google Photos. Here’s what happened.

When Google Photos was announced in 2015, I downloaded it. I had no intention of giving every photo I’ve ever taken to Google — which categorizes them, runs them through image recognition and facial recognition algorithms, makes weird algorithmic slideshows out of them, and adds them to its massive photo database —but I wanted to try it out in any case. I quickly realized it was not for me, but I did not delete the app.

Instead, I just told iOS not to give Google Photos access to my photos, which means the app sat dormant on my phone for years. I could have and should have deleted the app. Most people probably would have.

ANYWAYS, a few weeks ago, I was at a concert and, between sets, suddenly remembered that my friend had just adopted a puppy.

I texted him asking to see a picture. He responded with a video that he uploaded to Google Photos. Because I had Google Photos installed on my phone, it tried to open in the app. You cannot use Google Photos on iOS — even to view photos that have been shared with you — without granting the app access to all the photos on your phone. Because I was drunk, and because I wanted to see the puppy, I changed my app permissions.


I was careless and kind of dumb, but it’s not always easy to remember every specific setting I’ve ever selected for every app I’ve downloaded. And I think that’s one of the concerning things about “opt-in” privacy protection. They’re not really opt-in if you’re not sure what you’re opting into.

It’s clear that the author first had to give permission to Google Photos, but it’s also clear that Google uses its “free” apps to worm its way into its users’ lives in every imaginable way.

(02:18 PM)

HEH. “Democrats are Losing Their War Against Women:” Sarah Sanders Rubs Haspel Confirmation In Democrats’ Faces.

(02:11 PM)

MILLENNIAL BLUES: Financial Crisis May Have Hit ’80s Generation the Hardest.

Americans who entered the world in the 1980s “are at substantial risk of accumulating less wealth over their life spans than the members of previous generations,” the report’s authors say. “Not only is their wealth shortfall in 2016 very large in percentage terms, but the typical 1980s family actually lost ground in relative terms between 2010 and 2016, a period of rapidly rising asset values that buoyed the wealth of all older cohorts.”

The St. Louis Fed research finds that as of 2016, those born in the 1980s had wealth levels 34% below where they would be absent the financial crisis and its aftermath. In comparison, people born in the 1970s had wealth levels that were 18% under where they should have been, while folks from the 1960s were down 11%.

This is going to have serious fiscal consequences in Washington down the road, as swathes of Millennial voters begin to retire and have nothing in the bank.

(02:00 PM)

SOMETHING LIKE THIS HAPPENED TO MY DAUGHTER’S FRIEND WITH MELANOMA, THOUGH IT WORKED OUT OKAY AND SHE’S CURRENTLY IN REMISSION: New life-saving cancer treatment tied to vision loss. She’s not one of the patients mentioned in this article, though I’m not sure if she received the same kind of immunotherapy.

(01:56 PM)

BLUE WAVE? Americans thank Trump for economy.

(01:44 PM)

HE IS THE VERY MODEL OF THE MODERN OBJECTIVE MSM JOURNALIST: Insanity! Brian Stelter: It’s ‘Offensive’ to Suggest I’m an Anti-Trump Democrat.

(Classical allusion in headline.)

(01:30 PM)

CAN WE FIGURE OUT HOW TO RESET IT, PLEASE? The Thing Inside Your Cells That Might Determine How Long You Live.

(01:28 PM)

THE ELEPHANT IN SACRAMENTO: The bullet train is California’s biggest infrastructure project — but it’s seldom discussed in governor’s race.

The leading candidates for governor have said little publicly about how they would fix dire problems in the $77-billion mega-project that has already overrun its initial cost estimate by $44 billion.

The next governor, as well as the state Senate and Assembly, will inherit a financial storm and face the tasks of finding money to bore tunnels under three mountain ranges, develop complex passages through the state’s biggest urban regions and avoid further political compromises that would slow travel along the route.

Yet the California political system is largely shying away from addressing the problems at the very moment when the project’s chief proponent, Gov. Jerry Brown, prepares to leave office.

For a fraction of the cost, California could have done something about its hideous roads, and invested in desalination plants to fix its dire water situation.

(01:13 PM)

CHRISTIAN TOTO: Seven Funny, Fawning Reviews of HBO’s The Final Year. “No one associated with the 2017 documentary The Final Year meant for audiences to laugh at its content.”

(01:12 PM)

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(01:06 PM)

CHANGE: Poll: Under Trump, Job Market Optimism at Highest Point Ever Recorded.

(01:00 PM)

NEWS YOU CAN USE: Which Ordinary Household Items Could Actually Stop a Bullet? Depends a lot on the bullet. But even for most handgun loads, most modern homes provide concealment, but not much in the way of cover. And that’s often true for their exterior walls, too.

(12:55 PM)

SENATOR CHRIS MURPHY: GOP Knows ‘Everything Is Different’ and Gun Rights ‘Might’ Cost Party Election. “Republicans ‘have this sort of genetic attachment to this lobby and to this industry that they simply cannot break until they are forced to,’ says Dem senator.”

Power-seeking pols trying to force — that’s Murphy’s word — people into surrendering their constitutional rights is all the justification anyone needs for a broad interpretation of the Second Amendment.

(12:44 PM)

BIG, IF TRUE: Hitler Not Alive on Moon, Study Confirms.

(12:37 PM)

K-12 IMPLOSION UPDATE: Parents angry after students at elite NYC school have moment of silence for fallen Hamas terrorists.

(12:22 PM)

SPACE: NASA’s planet-hunting satellite sends back its first image — and it’s amazing.

Keep in mind, this image was produced using only one of TESS’s four cameras. Once the mission becomes fully operational, NASA expects future images to cover more than 400 times as much sky. A “first light” image suitable for detailed scientific analysis will be released in June. Meanwhile, here’s everything you need to know about the mission.

The four cameras will scan 26 entire sectors of the sky, covering both hemispheres during its two-year mission. The observations will focus on possible “transits” of exoplanets, where a far-away planet passes in front of its star causing a measurable drop in brightness. (And there’s quite a few way-off worlds; from the Dracula planet to Earth’s bigger, older cousin, here are the 10 best exoplanets discovered so far.)

“We learned from Kepler that there are more planets than stars in our sky, and now TESS will open our eyes to the variety of planets around some of the closest stars,” said Paul Hertz of NASA. “TESS will cast a wider net than ever before for enigmatic worlds whose properties can be probed by NASA’s upcoming James Webb Space Telescope and other missions.”

TESS is on its way to an unusual but highly stable elliptical orbit that takes it around the Earth every 13.7 days. After getting a gravity assist by passing within 5,000 miles of the moon, a final thruster burn on May 30 will finalize its orbit. The satellite will begin its detailed observation mission utilizing all four cameras in mid-June.

I can’t wait.

(12:10 PM)

HOUSTON POLICE CHIEF: We need people to start using the ballot box to take action on gun control.

People have been doing just that, ever since turning Congress over to the GOP following Bill Clinton’s “assault” weapons ban.

(11:00 AM)

IN THE MAIL: Teach Your Dog 100 English Words : The A+ Dog Training Program for Good Manners and Happy Obedience.

Plus, fresh Gold Box and Lightning Deals.

(10:59 AM)

MY USA TODAY COLUMN: Inoculating Ourselves Against The School Shooting Meme.

(10:59 AM)

YOU’RE GONNA NEED A BIGGER BLOG: Six Times Hillary Whined About the 2016 Election in Her Yale Commencement Speech.


(10:49 AM)

AUSTRALIA BANS USE OF “VIOLENT IMAGERY” BY COMBAT UNITS: It hasn’t gone over well with the troops.

This order was met with incredulousness and unprintable comments by Australian combat troops, especially combat veterans of the many wars and peacekeeping operations Australia has been involved in.


The use of the now banned (in the Australian military) symbols arose spontaneously among troops in heavy combat (including peacekeeping or counter-terrorism operations) where the troops faced danger on a regular and sustained basis. Combat commanders (NCOs and junior officers) also getting shot at tended to allow the symbols to be used. Motivating combat troops and maintaining morale (and sanity) is very much a school of “whatever works.” But the further up the chain of command you go the less influence combat psychology has and the more concern is shown for what the politicians and voters are concerned about.

Alas, “…bans like this are part of a trend that began in the late 20th century with bans on aircraft “nose art”.”

Political correctness more than run amok. The politically correct doofs are undermining the armed forces that protect their silly excess. Read the whole post and weep.

(10:43 AM)

FOOD STAMP DOUBLE DIPPERS COST MILLION$ ANNUALLY: Problems for the embattled farm bill just keep getting more complicated. LifeZette’s Brendan Kirby reports.

(10:35 AM)

WAIT, WHAT? The ONA Paid Stefan Halper $400K Why?

Related: “That the FBI and its allies spent weeks falsely implying that their informant was some sort of secret, covert, sensitive, undercover asset – when in fact he’s a well-known CIA operative with a long, public history of dirty ops – is exactly why people shouldn’t trust their claims.” Yes, that’s right, Glenn Greenwald is the voice of good sense here.

(10:30 AM)

A VICTORY FOR THAT RAPE-DENIER, ATTICUS FINCH: Sanity: School board votes to keep ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ in curriculum.

(10:29 AM)

BUT OF COURSE: Europe Plotting to Undermine New U.S. Sanctions on Iran.

Ahead of a landmark foreign policy speech on Iran Monday morning by newly installed Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, his first since taking the office, European nations have been locked in meetings to develop contingencies to continue doing business with Iran after new U.S. sanctions go into effect in the coming months.

European Union members are seeking to reimpliment an old law known as the blocking statute, which orders European companies to ignore U.S. sanctions on Iran.

The move sets up a showdown between the United States and Europe over the future of business dealings with Iran in the wake of President Donald Trump’s decision to walk away from the landmark nuclear deal and reimpose wide-ranging and severe sanctions on the Islamic Republic.

Iran opponents on Capitol Hill are already moving to respond, according to multiple sources who shared with the Free Beacon a newly developed policy memo that maps a plan for the United States to potentially sanction the European Investment Bank, or EIB, and cut its access to the U.S. financial system. The policy paper was written by Richard Goldberg, a senior adviser at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

“There is no statute that can save a European company from losing its access to the U.S. financial system,” the policy memo states. “European companies will not be willing to violate U.S. sanctions even with the revival of the blocking statute.”

Pulling the Europeans along into a renewed sanctions regime was never going to be easy, which is one of the ways President Obama sought to lock future administrations into sticking with his lousy deal.

(10:10 AM)

MARK PENN: Stopping Robert Mueller to protect us all.

Flush with 16 prosecutors, including a former lawyer for the Clinton Foundation, and an undisclosed budget, the Mueller investigation has been a scorched-earth effort to investigate the entirety of the Trump campaign, Trump business dealings, the entire administration and now, if it was not Russia, maybe it’s some other country.

The president’s earlier legal team was naive in believing that, when Mueller found nothing, he would just end it. Instead, the less investigators found, the more determined and expansive they became. This president and his team now are on a better road to put appropriate limits on all this.

This process must now be stopped, preferably long before a vote in the Senate. Rather than a fair, limited and impartial investigation, the Mueller investigation became a partisan, open-ended inquisition that, by its precedent, is a threat to all those who ever want to participate in a national campaign or an administration again.

Penn, in case you’d forgotten, served as Bill Clinton’s pollster during his impeachment.

(10:00 AM)

HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE, SELF-PARODY EDITION: Liberal prof tries to ban book about Robert E. Lee’s horse.

(09:00 AM)

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(08:59 AM)

MY USA TODAY COLUMN: Inoculating Ourselves Against The School Shooting Meme.

(08:57 AM)

LIZ SHELD’S MORNING BRIEF: Declassify All the Documents and Much, Much More. “Trump is getting bad advice. He should not have asked the DOJ, a subject of the investigation, to investigate itself. With all the DOJ stonewalling and slow-walking of documents to comply with Congressional oversight, there’s no doubt a mountain of bad behavior is being covered up. What Trump should have done, and can still do, is DECLASSIFY ALL THE DOCUMENTS in question.”

(08:56 AM)

RICHARD FERNANDEZ: The Hunter Becomes The Hunted. “The specifics of the individual accusations may be fake, but the struggle over the control of the bureaucracy is frighteningly real. Concern over the independence of powerful bureaucracies has long been paramount for a reason. The biggest problem with weaponizing intelligence agencies is it CREATES a pathway for the foreign takeover of the system. If a once hostile power takes over the White House and that president corrupts the agencies, an unfettered secret police will have the ability to remain in power indefinitely. . . . Trump, by officially demanding an answer into whether the previous administration engaged in political spying, is effectively accusing them of cheating at cards. As everybody knows, once you ask this question at a table, the surface game stops and a deeper game begins. Suddenly the little cardboard rectangles don’t matter anymore.”

(08:53 AM)

IRAN’S DEATH TO AMERICA EMOJI: You know I’m not making this up. The emoji appears on a “domestically-produced mobile messaging app.”

I’m not making this up, either: Iran’s criminal ayatollah regime must never be allowed to acquire nuclear weapons. But Obama’s so-called “nuclear deal” permitted just that. (bumped)

(08:47 AM)

I’M IN FAVOR OF THIS TOO: The left turns up the heat to break up Facebook.

Related: Social Media As Social Disease.

(08:32 AM)

ROGER KIMBALL: “It is my sad task to introduce a discordant note into the hosannahs of excited self-congratulation that greeted the wedding yesterday of Rachel Meghan Markle, the American actress and divorcee, to Prince Harry, sixth in line to the throne.”

(08:30 AM)

PAUL BEDARD: Boom: Team Trump cuts nearly twice as many regulations as promised.

The Trump administration is showing no signs of slowing its slashing of Obama-era regulations, beating their plans to cut two for every new rule and saving more than double what was hoped for, according to a new report.

“The Trump administration is making substantial deregulatory progress,” said a new report from American Action Forum.

“The administration is prioritizing deregulation, and it is set to double its goals of a two-for-one deregulatory-to-regulatory ratio and $686.6 million in net savings,” said the report from forum experts Dan Bosch, director of regulatory policy, and Dan Goldbeck, a senior analyst.

When he came to office, Trump promised to cut two regulations for every new one he imposed.

The duo said that the percentage is actually 3.75 to 1, an unprecedented reduction.

Trump believes that cutting regulations, while it receives few headlines, is one of his team’s biggest accomplishments and a driver in the improving economy and investment in the United States.

Trump has so far been both the most conservative and most libertarian president of my lifetime. Granted, that’s not a super-high bar to clear, but still.

(08:29 AM)


(08:27 AM)

“NOW”: Okay, Now I Actually Do Want To Take Your Guns.

Listen, I know the moments after a gunman opens fire in a school are hectic for you. You have to get your talking points together, you have to mentally prepare to debate a traumatized yet sensible child, you have to look at yourself in the mirror and practice saying that more guns would have made the situation less deadly. It’s a busy time! And since we are always either in the moments after or the moments before a mass shooting, you’re pretty much always busy, I have noticed!

Anyway, I just wanted to drop you a line and let you know that I now actually do want to take your guns.

All of your guns.

Right now.

It was always “now.”


Dave Holmes can’t even confess without subterfuge.

(08:26 AM)

HERCULEAN ELEPHANT WALK: Bird’s eye view of a flock of C-130J Super Hercules on a runway at Yokota Air Base, Japan.

(08:13 AM)

FORMER ATTORNEY GENERAL MICHAEL MUKASEY: It’s Time To End The Mueller Investigation.

Because Attorney General Jeff Sessions had worked on the Trump campaign, he recused himself from the matter, and so the deputy — Rod Rosenstein — took the decision to appoint a special counsel. The regulations require that such an appointment recite the facts justifying the conclusion that a federal crime was committed, and specify the crime. However, the initial appointment of Robert Mueller did neither, referring instead to a national security investigation that a special counsel has no authority to pursue.

Although Rosenstein apparently tried to correct his mistake in a new appointment memo, he has thus far refused to disclose, even to a federal judge, a complete copy of it. In other investigations supposedly implicating a president — Watergate and Whitewater come to mind — we were told what the crime was and what facts justified the investigation. Not here.

Nor have any of the charges filed in the Mueller investigation disclosed the Trump campaign’s criminal acceptance or solicitation of help from the Russians. The one indictment that relates to Russian criminality charges that the Russians hacked Democratic Party computers and committed other social media abuse, but says specifically that if the Trump campaign got the benefit of it, that was “unwitting” — i.e., without criminal intent.

Since then, although the White House has produced documents in the tens of thousands, the investigation has gotten further from anything suggesting Trump campaign criminality involving Russian influence, not closer. Michael Cohen and Stormy Daniels, however fascinating, have nothing to do with Russian campaign influence.

What’s the harm in letting it go on?

First, the law requires that a special counsel investigate a specified crime based on specified facts, not try to be the second coming of the Lone Ranger.

It’s more a case of “show me the man and I will find you a crime.”

(08:11 AM)

SHARYL ATTKISSON: “It’s easy to find timelines that detail Trump-Russia collusion developments. Here are links to two of them I recommend. . . . On the other side, evidence has emerged in the past year that makes it clear there were organized efforts to collude against candidate Donald Trump–and then President Trump.” She has a timeline.

(08:11 AM)

CLARICE FELDMAN: H.A.L.P.E.R. Spells Game Up for Obama’s Spies.

Last week I reported that Internet sleuths had winkled out the name of the spy/agent provocateur that Obama’s intelligence officers had used on the Trump campaign. The New York Times and Washington Post, the Democrats’ semi-official newspapers this week megaphoned the instigators, offering up their justifications without naming his name.

Again, the name is Stefan Halper, who, as I wrote here last week, was paid a substantial sum by the Department of Defense’s Office of Net Assessment.

If it was for this work – and it suspiciously looks like it because the payments were made in July and September of 2016 when he was weaseling his way into the campaign – then we know we have the DNI, CIA, DOJ, FBI, Dept. of State and the Defense Department working for Hillary’s election and to smear and create a basis for further spying on Trump and his campaign.

The NYT and Washington Post stories were clearly dictated by the perpetrators of this unprecedented effort to interfere with our elections. A careful reading shows that they leaked just enough about Halper to positively identify him while the press refuses to name him because the selective leakers warned, “that exposing him could endanger him or his contacts.” If you buy that nonsense, please send me your name and contact information because I have a great investment deal for you.

Lots of dots to connect — read the whole thing.

(08:04 AM)

THE MEDIA SEE ONLY ONE COLLUSION STORY:  Anyone examining FBI and Justice Department abuses is smeared and ridiculed, writes John Fund.

(08:02 AM)

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(08:00 AM)

NOT ANYMORE: Is There No Neutral Public Square?

(07:55 AM)

WELL, GOOD: New Army Basic Training Promises More Ammo, Range Time for Trainees.

Most months I regret how little time I get to spend at the range, and soldiers, generally speaking, have a greater chance of getting shot at than bloggers do.

(07:40 AM)

MISS LIBERTY: Cambodian Day of Remembrance: Five Films to Honor the Dead.

Pol Pot was taught the wonders of agrarian socialism while attending college in France, and returned home with a determination to build that utopia — whatever the cost. Per Wikipedia, “[The Khmer Rouge] planned to create a form of agrarian socialism founded on the ideals of Stalinism and Maoism. The subsequent policies caused forced relocation of the population from urban centers, torture, mass executions, use of forced labor, malnutrition, and disease.”

It’s weird how you never see this kind of thing happen in capitalist republics, where the workers and farmers are all exploited.

(07:30 AM)

THIS WILL ACCELERATE THE K-12 IMPLOSION: Obama’s education secretary Arne Duncan wants parents to keep kids out of school until gun control laws are passed.

(07:20 AM)

JONATHAN TOBIN: Democrats Reach a Tipping Point on Israel.

It is one thing for most Democrats to treat the opening of the new embassy in Jerusalem as if it were a Trump rally and therefore to be avoided — the only Democrat in attendance was former senator Joseph Lieberman — rather than a celebration of the alliance. But the deaths of dozens of Palestinians in the course of a “march of return” in which thousands sought to rush Israel’s border provided an opportunity to take the temperature of the party on the relationship, and the results were far from good.

While the Trump administration backed Israel’s right to defend its border with as much force as necessary, most Democrats didn’t agree. Many responded as the Obama administration would have been expected to, denouncing the supposedly “disproportionate” tactics of the Israel Defense Forces but also noting the role of the Hamas terrorist group, which rules Gaza, in fomenting the violence.

Representative Joseph Kennedy III, a rising star in the party who gave the official Democratic response to Trump’s State of the Union address earlier this year, provided a good example of this two-faced approach when he managed to cram criticism of Israel’s “excessive use of force,” a denunciation of Hamas, support for moving the embassy, and a claim that the embassy’s “hasty relocation” by Trump was the ultimate cause for all the violence into one two-paragraph statement.

But a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo from 13 Senate Democrats suggests the party may be at a tipping point.

The letter was organized by once and perhaps future presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders (Vt.) and was joined by Senator Elizabeth Warren (Mass.), another likely White House hopeful. Over the course of two pages laying out concern for the Palestinians and a desire to resume funding for a U.N. refugee agency fatally compromised by Hamas, the senators showed little interest in the terror group’s responsibility for the violence or the dismal situation in Gaza.

Democrats’ commitment to the politics of grievance has put them in the uncomfortable position of having to take sides with a gay-murdering, female-oppressing terror organization — over Israel, where women’s and minority rights are fully protected. Most Americans can probably see the ridiculousness of that, but to date the only Republican who has figured out how to take political advanced of it is Donald Trump.

(07:09 AM)

VIRGINIA POSTREL: How I Caused California’s Housing Crisis. “When my husband and I moved to Los Angeles in 1986, we were thrilled with how easy it was to find a place to live, even on the desirable Westside. Compared to Boston, where we’d previously been, apartments were plentiful and reasonably priced. Although we rented a place in a mid-century fourplex, the city was full of new construction, including sizable apartment and condo complexes.”

(07:07 AM)

A FIRST-PASS ANSWER? ONE STEP TOO FAR. How Far Left Will the Democrats Go in November?

(07:04 AM)

TONY KATZ: America! We’re Being Punked! How else can you explain Democrats supporting Hamas and MS-13?

(07:00 AM)

BARRIERS TO ENTRY: A bar too high? Pass rate plummets to record low for California lawyer exam. I strongly suspect the bar examiners are grading more stringently to keep out competition. For potential law students, and law schools, though, a barely 1-in-4 pass rate is brutal, especially since law school only gets more expensive, and job prospects aren’t especially great.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

(10:35 PM)

AT AMAZON, Spring Deals on Women’s Bras.

(10:32 PM)

DISPATCHES FROM THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE: Cherry Hill, NJ Principal Apologizes To Black Students Over ‘party Like It’s 1776’ Prom Theme.

(10:10 PM)

DAVID BARON, CALL YOUR OFFICE: Cougar kills mountain biker, injures fellow rider in Washington.

(09:48 PM)

OPEN THREAD: Thread out, moondoggies!

(09:00 PM)

YES, UNDERWATER MODELING IS A THING, and one of my old dive instructors does it. This is not her, but one of her friends. More here.

(08:55 PM)

SCOTT JOHNSON: Nunes Approaches The Target.

(08:01 PM)

WELL: Rod Rosenstein asks DOJ inspector general to review possible Trump campaign infiltration.

Flashback: Surprise: At the End, Obama Administration Gave NSA Broad New Powers.

(08:00 PM)

SHOCKING NEWS: Pools, Hot Tubs Can Harbor Dangerous Germs. I sometimes wonder about the likely state of motel-room hot tubs in Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg. And by wonder, I mean shudder.

(07:00 PM)

AT AMAZON, Shop Amazon Warehouse Deals – Deep Discounts on Open-box and Used Tools & Home Improvement.

Plus, APIE Portable Waterproof Wireless Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker.. Or you can go with this much bigger model from Altec Lansing.

(06:00 PM)

I’M RE-UPPING THIS: Drowning Doesn’t Look Like Drowning. “When someone is drowning there is very little splashing, and no waving or yelling or calling for help of any kind. To get an idea of just how quiet and undramatic drowning can be, consider this: It is the number two cause of accidental death in children age 15 and under (just behind vehicle accidents). Of the approximately 750 children who will drown next year, about 375 of them will do so within 25 yards of a parent or other adult. In 10 percent of those drownings, the adult will actually watch them do it, having no idea it is happening.”

(05:44 PM)

BLUE ON BLUE: Left-Wing Pastor Resigns After Calling Palo Alto ‘Elitist Sh*t Den of Hate.’

Why are Democratic-monopoly cities such elitist shitdens of hate?

(05:14 PM)

WHY ARE LEFTWING-MONOPLY INSTITUTIONS SUCH CESSPITS OF SEXUAL ABUSE AND EXPLOITATION? Asia Argento Delivers Searing Speech at Cannes: Festival Was Weinstein’s “Hunting Ground.”

Related: David French on “The steady drumbeat of sexual scandal is eroding the Left’s moral authority:”

I truly don’t think the Left understands how the relentless drumbeat of sexual scandal looks to Americans outside the progressive bubble. Left-dominated quarters of American life — Hollywood, the media, progressive politics — have been revealed to be havens for the worst sort of ghouls, and each scandal seems to be accompanied by two words that deepen American cynicism and make legions of conservative Americans roll their eyes at the Left’s moral arguments: “Everyone knew.”

Let’s put this in the clearest possible terms: For years, as Hollywood positioned itself as America’s conscience and as the media lauded its commitment to “social justice,” it was harboring, protecting, and indeed promoting truly dreadful human beings as leaders and taste-makers. Progressive politicians who proclaimed support for women’s rights on Twitter were groping women on airplanes or punching them in the bedroom.

All this was happening at the precise time that the dominant argument — particularly against social conservatism — was that “you people are haters and bigots.” It’s difficult to overstate the extent to which conservative Americans have felt scolded and hectored. So how do you expect us to react when it’s revealed that all too many of the self-appointed moralists weren’t just the kind of preachers who’d run off with the secretary, they were the kind of monsters who’d press a button in their office, lock the secretary in the room, and assault her?

And again, people knew.

And said it was “on us” to stop sexual assault, while turning a blind eye to Harvey Weinstein hunting for fresh meat at Cannes.

(05:07 PM)

#JOURNALISM: PATHETIC: Newsweek reporter’s response to Dana Loesch is your DAILY reminder of why Trump won.

The reporter (absurdly) calling Dana Loesch fat is Nina Burleigh, whose main claim to fame was her expressed desire to give Bill Clinton a blowjob as a gesture of thanks for his support of abortion.

(05:00 PM)

THANKS, CAPITALISM! World Bank: ‘extreme poverty’ to fall below 10% of world population for first time.

(04:41 PM)

FASTER, PLEASE: Trump Orders DOJ to Investigate Potential Obama-Era FBI Surveillance on the Trump Campaign.

(04:16 PM)

AT AMAZON, on sale, Hiroshi Knives (4 Piece Sushi Knife Set).

(04:00 PM)