Wednesday, August 23, 2017

(11:00 PM)

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(10:44 PM)

SOME WORTHWHILE LEADERSHIP ON FREE SPEECH from Berkeley Chancellor Carol Christ:

This fall, the issue of free speech will once more engage our community in powerful and complex ways. Events in Charlottesville, with their racism, bigotry, violence and mayhem, make the issue of free speech even more tense. The law is very clear; public institutions like UC Berkeley must permit speakers invited in accordance with campus policies to speak, without discrimination in regard to point of view. The United States has the strongest free speech protections of any liberal democracy; the First Amendment protects even speech that most of us would find hateful, abhorrent and odious, and the courts have consistently upheld these protections.

But the most powerful argument for free speech is not one of legal constraint — that we’re required to allow it — but of value. The public expression of many sharply divergent points of view is fundamental both to our democracy and to our mission as a university. The philosophical justification underlying free speech, most powerfully articulated by John Stuart Mill in his book, On Liberty, rests on two basic assumptions. The first is that truth is of such power that it will always ultimately prevail; any abridgement of argument therefore compromises the opportunity of exchanging error for truth. The second is an extreme skepticism about the right of any authority to determine which opinions are noxious or abhorrent. Once you embark on the path to censorship, you make your own speech vulnerable to it. . . .

We all desire safe space, where we can be ourselves and find support for our identities. You have the right at Berkeley to expect the university to keep you physically safe. But we would be providing students with a less valuable education, preparing them less well for the world after graduation, if we tried to shelter them from ideas that many find wrong, even dangerous. We must show that we can choose what to listen to, that we can cultivate our own arguments and that we can develop inner resilience, which is the surest form of safe space.

Indeed you do.

(10:26 PM)

NBC: Polls Show Trump Cratering? Not So Fast.

When his competition thinks an Asian sportscaster named Robert Lee is a neo-confederate provocation, well . . . .

(10:06 PM)


(09:38 PM)

WHAT EVERYONE NEEDS: Antibiotic-free Duck Fat.

(09:00 PM)

WHY IS ACADEMIA SUCH A CESSPIT OF MISOGYNY? Women Economists Face A ‘Toxic’ Work Environment.

(08:44 PM)

DON’T DRINK THE FIREWATER: They Blacked Out at a Mexico Resort. They Woke Up to a Nightmare.

(08:29 PM)

MOSTLY PEACEFUL: “As many as 2,000 ‘hostile’ protesters surrounded police, some throwing bottles filled with urine and punching and spitting at cops as they tried to escort participants from Saturday’s ‘Free Speech Rally’ out of Boston Common, according to police reports filed in court yesterday.”

(08:14 PM)

GOODNESS, GRACIOUS, GREAT BALLS OF SCHADENFREUDE! Watch: Top Five Remixes of the Antifa Protester Getting One in the Yarbles Outside Trump’s Rally.

(Classical reference in headline.)

(08:05 PM)

PURE COMEDY GOLD: Antifa protester getting hit in the groin with a rubber bullet + “I Will Always Love You” = Comedy Gold. And better yet, it’s backed up by Science! In a 1993 article, Popular Science asks “Why Is It Funny When A Guy Gets Hit In The Groin?

Besides the Freudian implications of the aggressive and sexual tension in the situation, there’s also the suddenness with which a blow to the ‘nads can take down even an otherwise big, strapping man. “Someone who’s powerful and dignified, who’s now keeling over in response to what seems like this minor infraction–so easily brought down from their normally human perch–is a violation of expectation..”

All I can add is: “Hey, nice shooting, officer.”
**UPDATE: not clear whether it was a rubber bullet or paintball-type of tear gas projectile. Still, I’m betting the cop who fired that shot won’t have to pay for his own drinks for a month.**

(08:02 PM)

FAKE ETHICS: Why Gorsuch’s speech to a private group at the Trump Hotel does not raise serious ethical issues.

As Peter Morgan and I noted some time ago, most “ethics” charges are made by people for less-than-ethical reasons.

(08:00 PM)

IF YOU HAVEN’T STARTED WEIGHT TRAINING, YOU MAY BE AFRAID TO. DON’T BE. THE FIRST YEAR IS GLORIOUS! Mark Rippetoe: Who Wants To Be A Novice? You Do! “It’s not bad to be a novice. I wish like hell I were a novice again, knowing what I know now. Your novice months, done correctly, will show you the fastest gains in size and strength you’ll ever make in the weight room, quite literally faster than advanced guys using steroids.”

(06:18 PM)

JIM TREACHER: There Goes Charlie Hebdo, Practicing Free Speech Again.

(06:06 PM)

“I’M YOUR HUCKLEBERRY:” Fired Google Engineer James Damore Hires Harmeet Dhillon As Lawyer. “The engineer who was fired by Google after he criticized the company’s diversity policies for ignoring differences between the sexes has hired civil rights lawyer Harmeet Dhillon, who was widely reported months ago to be a contender for a top job in the U.S. Justice Department. . . . Her firm is also seeking other potential plaintiffs who feel they’ve been discriminated against at Google based on their political views or their opinions about the company’s hiring practices.”

(06:05 PM)


Drug testing was and is scrupulously avoided by the IFBB. It is the freakish physiques that fill the auditoriums to overflow capacity, not cleanliness. There was a short time when the IFBB became righteous and actually instituted drug testing. This lasted for a year. This was back in the 1980s and when the physiques deflated almost as fast as the box office receipts, quietly, and without any fanfare, drug testing was dropped. Arnold Schwarzenegger has been particularly hypocritical on the issue: as the Governor he was the chief law enforcement officer of the State of California, yet the contest with his name on it awards its highest honors to the most drugged men on the face of the planet. The female bodybuilders look like cyborgs and it is obvious that all Arnold competitors were, are, and forever shall be gassed to their blood-shot eyeballs.

Ouch. But I resent the “cyborg” line. I’m married to a cyborg and she looks nothing like that.

Related: The Death of Female Bodybuilding and the Rise of “Man Face.”

(05:50 PM)

GOOD THING SHE NEVER GOT THAT 3AM PHONE CALL, I GUESS: “So Hillary admits that she couldn’t think of what to do under pressure. She needs a pause button. Is that like a reset button? There’s no such thing.”

You know, sometimes a president only has four minutes.

(05:14 PM)

S.E. CUPP: AFTER ESPN’S ROBERT LEE MOMENT AND OTHER INSANITY, IT’S CLEAR: TRUMP HAS WON THE MONUMENT DEBATE. “The decision to remove an Asian-American announcer named Robert Lee from calling University of Virginia’s home opener — ‘simply because of the coincidence of his name,’ as ESPN inexplicably admits — unsurprisingly lit up the Internet with outrage, jokes and memes. It also rendered inarguably true the assertion made by President Trump himself as well as many others that this debate will descend quickly and embarrassingly down a slippery slope. I’d argue the pre-emptive removal of an Asian-American sportscaster, who had nothing to do with the Civil War or slavery, from a college football game simply because his name sounds similar doesn’t represent a gradual slope, but a 1000-foot cliff.”

Political correctness is infantilizing.

(05:02 PM)

SCOTT ADAMS: The Magical Thinking Opposition. “My hypothesis is that the political side that is out of power is the one that hallucinates the most – and needs to – in order to keep their worldview intact.”

This reminds me of Jane’s Law: “The devotees of the party in power are smug and arrogant. The devotees of the party out of power are insane.” Truer today than it was in 2004. But when Dems are hallucinating, their craziness is amplified by the media.

(04:56 PM)

MAKE HATS GREAT AGAIN: Here’s What Happened When I Decided to Wear my MAGA Hat in Public.

(04:45 PM)

NO ENEMIES TO THE LEFT — WHETHER IT’S AL-QAEDA OR ANTIFA, AT REUTERS, ONE MAN’S TERRORIST IS STILL ANOTHER MAN’S FREEDOM FIGHTER: Reuters tweets, then later deletes, “Pro-Trump supporters face off with peace activists during protests outside a Trump rally in Phoenix,” to describe rock-throwing Antifa activists.

Stephen Jukes could not be reached for comment.

UPDATE: Bang-up day for Reuters’ social media team, who are also unsure if ESPN’s Robert Lee is the Confederate general’s doppelgänger or his namesake.

(04:39 PM)

HMM: Two October surprises could boost oil prices above $50.

The first potential shock Croft and her team at RBC are monitoring is a debt default by Venezuelan oil giant Petroleos de Venezuela SA. Oil production from the state-owned PDVSA has steadily slipped as the country grapples with a financial crisis after the collapse in crude prices in 2014 and years of economic mismanagement.

“They have $3.5 billion in national oil company debt coming due in October-November. If they default, that could be significant for Venezuela’s production outlook,” Croft told CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street” on Tuesday.

Lower crude production from Venezuela would tend to support the oil market, which has been oversupplied for years.

The second surprise would come if the United States abandons an international deal that lifted sanctions on Iran. President Donald Trump could refuse to certify that Iran is complying with an accord that puts limits on its nuclear program. That could lead to the renewal of sanctions, which could impact Iran’s oil production.

A spike would provide relief to American frackers, who have trouble turning a profit at today’s prices. And taking Iran or Venezuelan oil off the market would give American frackers more opportunity to take market share.

Both of which would tend to drive prices back down.

(04:22 PM)

DON’T ASK ME WHY: Billy Joel dons Jewish star against Neo-Nazis.

(04:16 PM)

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(04:08 PM)

JIM GERAGHTY: Parasitic Progressivism at ESPN, Marvel, and the University of Missouri.

Notice that the progressive-minded revolutionaries in these three cases did not seek to found their own university in Missouri, their own cable sports network, or their own line of comic books. That would require a great deal of patience and effort and risk of failure. They moved into preexisting, relatively apolitical institutions and steered the ship in a new direction, aligned with their political and social goals.

And then they hit the rocks.


(04:00 PM)

LUCKY KIDS: This Generation Doesn’t Remember a Bad Corvette.

(03:10 PM)

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(03:00 PM)

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(02:55 PM)

DEAR PRESIDENT TRUMP: It’s Time for Some Conventional Political Finesse.

(02:48 PM)

I THINK THEY’VE HIT THE NAIL ON THE HEAD WITH THAT ONE: 47% say media blocking Trump’s agenda, helped Obama.

The public appears to agree with President Trump that the media is out to get him and stop his agenda.

A new Rasmussen Reports survey on the day Trump was railing against the media found that 47 percent believe the media is blocking his administration from scoring successes.

The public appears to agree with President Trump that the media is out to get him and stop his agenda.

A new Rasmussen Reports survey on the day Trump was railing against the media found that 47 percent believe the media is blocking his administration from scoring successes.

More and more people are realizing that if you think of the press as Democratic Party operatives with bylines, it explains nearly everything.

(02:44 PM)

FALLOUT FROM A PREVIOUS WAVE OF MASS HYSTERIA: Dan and Fran Keller compensated $3.6M for time served.

The couple was accused of satanic and ritual abuse of children in their care in the early 90s. A jury found them guilty and sentenced them to 48 years in prison. In 2013, a court ruled they didn’t get a fair trial and released them.

In June of this year, Travis County District Attorney Margaret Moore formally dismissed the cases against them. According to the motion to dismiss, there is “no credible evidence” that the Kellers, now 75 and 67 respectively, committed the crimes they were accused of, including sexually abusing the children at their day care in 1991.

Honestly, that doesn’t seem like enough. But remember: These waves of hysteria crest and fall, but the damage they do to people’s lives lives on.

(02:41 PM)


(02:36 PM)

THE PLAME GAME: Ex-CIA Officer Trying to Buy Enough of Twitter to Ban Trump.

Kal Penn tried to get the president banned from Twitter by invoking the social network’s Terms of Service. Valerie Plame Wilson is going a step further. The former CIA officer has launched an effort to raise enough money to buy a controlling stake in the company and then shut down President Trump’s account, reports USA Today, which notes Twitter is currently worth just shy of $12 billion. The GoFundMe page has a long way to go on its $1 billion goal, a lofty amount that Wilson describes as “a small price to pay to take away Trump’s most powerful megaphone and prevent a horrific nuclear war.”

That seems sane.

(02:30 PM)

TECHNOLOGY YOU CAN’T TRUST, RUN BY PEOPLE YOU CAN’T TRUST: Spyware backdoor prompts Google to pull 500 apps with >100m downloads. “The apps contained a software development kit called Igexin, which makes it easier for apps to connect to ad networks and deliver ads that are targeted to the specific interests of end users. Once an app using a malicious version of Igexin was installed on a phone, the developer kit could update the app to include spyware at any time, with no warning. The most serious spyware installed on phones were packages that stole call histories, including the time a call was made, the number that placed the call, and whether the call went through. Other stolen data included GPS locations, lists of nearby Wi-Fi networks, and lists of installed apps.”

(02:22 PM)

UNEXPECTEDLY? Migrant crisis: Italy lurches to the right as tolerance wears thin.

As cowering locals filmed Catania’s first ever interracial street fighting on their phones, Mr Salice, 54, climbed into his white van and drove it towards the Senegalese, then reversed before careering into a stall, scattering those who had avoided being run over.

His subsequent claim that he was trying to get his van to safety did not convince Tidiane Diamanka, a Senegalese hawker. “He was trying to hit people — this was an act of terrorism,” he said.

The battle on July 19, which police are investigating, was a turning point for Catania. Italian traders in this port of 300,000 people in the shadow of Mount Etna used to help African hawkers to dodge the police. Now, after the arrival of more than 600,000 migrants in Italy in the past four years, locals are increasingly saying basta — enough. And not just in Catania.

The summer has been peppered with reports of violence and hostility to migrants as Italians adjust to the likelihood that many tens of thousands of the newcomers will be staying permanently. The country’s tolerance is waning, its politics being reshaped. The anti-establishment and increasingly migrant-hostile Five Star Movement is well placed to win next year’s parliamentary elections.

Interesting report, and with serious longterm implications for Europe.

(02:21 PM)

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(02:20 PM)

REMINDER: James T. Hodgkinson, Attempted Assassin Of Steve Scalise, Already Being Erased From History. (Bumped).

(02:06 PM)

INGLORIOUS END: U.S. 7th Fleet Head Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin to be Removed from Command Early Following McCain Collision.

(02:00 PM)

GOOD. Court Strips Immunity From Bite Mark Experts Who Put Wrong Man In Jail For 23 Years. “Bite mark analysis” was always junk science.

(02:00 PM)

FASTER, PLEASE: A Thorium-Salt Reactor Has Fired Up for the First Time in Four Decades.

(01:58 PM)


(01:51 PM)

THE SCORPION STINGS THE FROG, EVERY TIME: SPLC Shamelessly Fundraising Off Hate that it Does Nothing About.

(01:35 PM)

HOW HAVE WE SURVIVED WITHOUT THIS? Arianna Huffington’s Phone Bed.

(01:35 PM)

THIS IS CNN: CNN host reveals that journalists don’t like Trump.

It’s not clear why Mr. [Brian] Stelter wanted to raise the question of whether he and his colleagues are being honest. But there is certainly a question of just how uncomfortable CNN has been about raising issues related to President Trump’s health and character. “My impression is that since President Trump’s inauguration, there’s been a lot of tiptoeing going on,” added Mr. Stelter.

Perhaps he was referring to the program he hosted a month into the Trump presidency. Mr. Stelter called Mr. Trump’s words “a verbal form of poison” and said the President instills “fear in many people.” Then, appearing above a CNN headline saying, “TRUMP’S NIXON-ESQUE PRESS BASHING,” Mr. Stelter invited Carl Bernstein to tiptoe into the story. The former Washington Post reporter pronounced that Mr. Trump’s attacks on the press “are more treacherous than Richard Nixon’s ” and proceeded to reference Stalin and Hitler.

Stelter has certainly been making a name for himself lately.

(01:30 PM)

BUT IT MAKES “RANGE ANXIETY” MORE OF A THING: Cheaper, Lighter, Quieter: The Electrification of Flight Is at Hand. But this is a trainer, so that’s not an issue.

(01:12 PM)


It’s different when they do it — and the “because shut up” was delivered via suspension notice.

(01:00 PM)

IT’S NO BETTER THAN TRUMP. IN FACT, IT’S NOT AS GOOD AS TRUMP. If The Left Won’t Acknowledge Leftist Violence, It’s No Better Than Trump. “It’s not difficult to simultaneously hate Nazis and communists. Perhaps our leftist commentariat should give it a try.”

(12:53 PM)

TIME’S-A-WASTING: Ways and Means Chairman: GOP ‘Fully Committed’ to Tax Reform This Year.

(12:35 PM)

21ST CENTURY CRIME: Metro Crackdown On Gum Chewing, ‘Manspreading’ Threatens Riders With Fines.

Riders who are found doing any of the following are subject to a fine of $75 per offense and could be escorted off the train or bus:

• Eating, drinking, smoking, vaping;
• Playing loud music;
• Disturbing others;
• Disorderly, lewd conduct;
• Placing chewing gum on seats;
• Loitering;
• Fare evasion;
• Occupying more than one seat or blocking a door; or
• Riding a bicycle or skateboard in a station.

Riders who commit third, fourth and fifth offenses could face being banned for 30 to 90 days, officials said.

Easier and more fun just to drive.

(12:20 PM)

NICE RIDE: Mercedes’ $2.8 Million Hypercar Gets Huge Power from a Tiny Engine.

The Project One gets most of its oomph from a turbocharged 1.6-liter V6 engine. That may seem minuscule for this sort of use case, but consider that this machine is a close cousin to the one that powered the car Lewis Hamilton drove to an F1 championship in 2015. Of course, some accommodations had to be made.

Many of these changes have to do with how, and how high, the engine revs. The engine in an “ordinary” Mercedes sports car, say the $158,000 AMG GTR, is sized and tuned to make max power around 6,500 rpm. This limits heat and wear, allows for slightly greater tolerances in internal equipment, heightens longevity, and limits vibration.

A Formula One racecar will more than double that number, reaching about 13,500 rpm, and the Project One’s engine is a lot closer to that primal scream than to the roar of the GTR. The small, free-spinning motor will redline at an outrageous 11,000 rpm.

700 horses out of 1.6 liters? We may have found the replacement for displacement: Money.

(12:14 PM)

TEAR DUCT TRIGGER WARNING: Five Wartime Tearjerkers Millennials Should Know About.

(12:05 PM)

CHRISTIAN TOTO: ‘Bushwick’ Trashes Texas, Right-Leaning Americans.

How did a B-movie bust like “Bushwick” get into the Sundance Film Festival?

The prestigious event allegedly accepts the best of the best from the indie world. Filmmakers’ careers can be made by getting their work screened in Park City, Utah.

Yet “Bushwick” debuted via Sundance all the same.

Did the film’s progressive premise punch its entry card?

Do you even need to ask?

(11:00 AM)

IN THE MAIL: From Owen Stanley, The Promethean.

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(10:50 AM)

MODERN MARRIAGE: Forget About Divorce. Don’t Marry a Hillary Supporter in the First Place.

(10:30 AM)

MEGAN MCARDLE: We Live in Fear of the Online Mobs: Internet shaming spreads everywhere and lives forever. We need a way to fight it.

This kind of private coercion is not entirely new, of course. Community outrage cost plenty of people their jobs or their businesses in the old days. But those were local scandals. Rarely would someone’s notoriety follow them if they moved to another city.

Over time more and more people have suffered national stigma that outlasts their 15 minutes of fame. Cable news accelerated this: Think of Monica Lewinsky in 1998. The internet transformed the degree of scrutiny, the extent of its reach, and the shelf life of the scandal, so much as to make it different not just in degree, but in kind.

Whenever a new form of power arises, we need to think about how to safeguard individual liberty against it.

In the early days of Twitter, I used to say that it was a bit like I imagined living in a forager band to be: You were immersed in a constant stream of conversation from the people you knew.

Ten years later, I still think that’s the right metaphor, but not in the way that I meant it then. Back then I saw Twitter as a tool for building social bonds. These days, I see it as a tool for social coercion.

Shut down Twitter. It’s the only way to be sure. For the children!

Related: Cloudflare CEO says his Daily Stormer takedown was “arbitrary” and “dangerous.” “I woke up this morning in a bad mood and decided to kick them off the Internet.”

So maybe if people wouldn’t react this way to Internet shame-storms, we wouldn’t see so many Internet shame-storms? Just spitballing here.

(10:26 AM)

PRIVACY: AccuWeather caught sending user location data, even when location sharing is off.

We independently verified the findings, and were able to geolocate an AccuWeather-running iPhone in our New York office within just a few meters, using nothing more than the Wi-Fi router’s MAC address and public data.

When the location is enabled, it sends the down-to-the-meter precise coordinates of the user, including speed and altitude, back to the data firm.

That’s where Reveal Mobile comes in. The data firm isn’t an advertiser per se but helps provide data for advertisers. Reveal says it “turns the location data coming out of those apps into meaningful audience data,” and “we listen for [latitude and longitude] data and when a device “bumps” into a Bluetooth beacon,” according to a brochure on its website.

For its part, Reveal Mobile executives said on a call last week with ZDNet that though company does collect Wi-Fi data and MAC address information, it “does not use it” for location data.

Tech blogger John Gruber adds:

In other words, if you deny AccuWeather permission to use the Location Services APIs on you iPhone, they’ll go around your back and send your Wi-Fi router name and the router’s MAC address to these shitbirds at Reveal Mobile, and they maintain a database that maps Wi-Fi routers to locations.

To me this is a one strike and you’re out situation. Apple should remove this version of the AccuWeather app from the App Store, and any of you reading this who have it installed should delete it from your devices and never re-install it. How can you trust them?

You can’t.

(10:14 AM)

AS A WISE COMMUNITY ORGANIZER ONCE SAID, PUNCH BACK TWICE AS HARD: Why Fired Engineer James Damore May Have a Federal Case Against Google.

(10:00 AM)

RECYCLING: You Can Actually Do Something Good With Those Eclipse Glasses.

Astronomers Without Borders has offered to take them off your hands so that children will be able to use them in future eclipses. The organization says it will soon announce a program dedicated to redistributing glasses to schools in Asia and South America, where there will be solar eclipses in 2019.

“This is an opportunity for schools to have a first-hand science experience that they might not otherwise have” Astronomers Without Borders President Mike Simmons told Gizmodo. “Many schools in developing countries don’t have resources for science education and this is a rare opportunity that inspires students and teachers and shows them that science is something they can do. It can be a ray of hope for young people who don’t otherwise see a path to a career like this.”

The organization’s mission is to provide astronomy-related education and equipment for developing countries. It raises money to buy new glasses for children, but it is hoping to use this opportunity to build a stockpile.


Here’s the link.

(09:00 AM)

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(08:59 AM)

ALSO, ESPN WON’T LET ANYONE NAMED GANDHI SPORTSCAST FOOTBALL GAMES: Ghana Will Remove Statue of ‘Racist’ Mahatma Gandhi From Its Oldest University. “The petition, which had more than 1,700 supporters on Thursday, cited letters Gandhi wrote during his time in South Africa as evidence that he advocated for the superiority of Indians over black Africans. It also took issue with his use of the derogatory term kaffir to refer to native Africans and criticized the lack of statues of African heroes and heroines on campus.”

(08:56 AM)

THUGS IS THUGS: Antifa Stabs Man for Having ‘Neo-Nazi Haircut.’

(08:55 AM)

INTERRING THE ISLAMIC STATE IN IRAQ: It’s dying in Iraq, still alive but severely wounded in Syria. Its hideous ideology must also die.

(08:40 AM)

THAT’S A RELIEF — MAYBE: Navy says cyber sabotage played ‘no role’ in USS John S. McCain incident.

Adm. John Richardson ordered an operational pause in all the fleets around the world while the Navy works to determine the factors behind the collision. Richardson tweeted that the Navy will conduct a wide investigation, including a review into the possibility of “cyber intrusion or sabotage,” — though a Navy official told Fox News on Tuesday any possible cyber sabotage played “no role” in the USS John S. McCain incident.

Richardson made clear that there is no evidence of a hacking at this point, but some cyber experts have raised to possiblity given the location of the warships.

Jeff Stutzman, an ex-information warfare specialist in the Navy who works at a cyber threat intelligence company, told McClatchy that “there’s something more than just human error going on.”

It seems likely that either the Navy is getting hacked or our sailors aren’t up to snuff, and neither option is very heartening.

(08:39 AM)

IT’S VERY CLEAR THAT TRUMP DOESN’T MIND DRIVING THE LEFT INSANE: The Gift of Anti-Trump Irrationality. As I keep saying, if the press and the political opposition — but I repeat myself — were just sober, straightforward, and honest they could beat Trump easily. But then, if they were capable of that, we wouldn’t have gotten Trump to begin with.

(08:23 AM)

HMM: The Latest Red Flag For U.S. Shale.

U.S. shale was thought to be the most competitive source of oil out there, and indeed the industry appears to be ramping up production at today’s prices. Shale had adapted to a $50 per barrel market, producers had streamlined operations to make them almost resemble an assembly line, and in a volatile and unpredictable market, the short-cycle nature of shale drilling made it one of the least risky options for drillers.

But in just a few weeks’ time, investors are starting to ask major questions about the viability of shale drilling at such a large scale.

A couple of notable things have occurred in the past month or so. Pioneer Natural Resources, a top Permian producer, raised concerns when it told investors that its Permian shale wells were coming up with a higher natural gas-to-oil ratio than expected, a potentially worrying sign. The company also reported that it had trouble with some of its wells, forcing it to delay some completions.

Separately, Goldman Sachs reported that top investors are souring on U.S. shale E&Ps, with poor performances leading investors to search for ways to “reallocate capital” elsewhere in the energy space. That is big red flag for the shale industry, which is still struggling to consistently post profits despite the highly-touted cost reductions over the past few years.

For consumers, the big benefit to shale is that under current conditions it effectively caps oil at a price which feels great at the pump and feels terrible in Riyadh and Moscow.

For producers, however, things are a little more complicated.

(08:07 AM)

HONESTY IS SUCH A LONELY WORD: Finally, someone on the Left just came out and said it. Being a Republican is apparently no different than being a white supremacist.

In a recent column for The Guardian, former Democratic senator for Wisconsin Russ Feingold clarified what all this controversy about white supremacists and Confederate statues is really all about: Republicans are Nazis.

“The lesson from Charlottesville is not how dangerous the neo-Nazis are,” he writes. “It is the unmasking of the Republican party leadership. In the wake of last weekend’s horror and tragedy, let us finally, finally rip off the veneer that Trump’s affinity for white supremacy is distinct from the Republican agenda of voter suppression, renewed mass incarceration and the expulsion of immigrants.”

Finally, finally, someone on the Left just came out and said it. Being a Republican is apparently no different than being a white supremacist. Supporting a lower marginal tax rate puts you in the same company as the Ku Klux Klan. Therefore, punching a Nazi is the same as punching someone wearing a MAGA hat.

There are certain MAGA-hat wearers I wouldn’t advise you to punch.

(08:02 AM)

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(08:00 AM)

THAT’S BECAUSE THEY’RE NOT ACTUALLY “ANTI-FASCIST:” Dershowitz: Antifa ‘trying to tear down America.’ And yes, of course that’s what they’re trying to do.

(07:57 AM)

WHERE HAVE ALL THE NAZIS GONE? They were on the left in Phoenix yesterday. That and more in Liz Sheld’s morning brief.

(07:36 AM)

DON’T BE EVIL: One Statistics Professor Was Just Banned By Google.

On Friday afternoon East Coast Time by surprise, I was completely shut down in all my Google accounts (all of my gmail accounts, blog, all of my university pages that were on google sites, etc.) for no reason and no warning. A number of us were stunned and unsure, but clearly we know at this point it wasn’t an accident. Here are some examples commented from best-selling author Nassim Taleb, and they have been retweeted by government officials, and the NYT and WSJ journalists.

My ads-free blog itself is a probability theory site, with 27 million reads and has somewhere near 150k overall followers. It’s been read by Warren Buffett, Elon Musk, Nobel Laureates, multiple governments, celebrity athletes around the world, deans of many universities (on the syllabi of same), and a number of TV news anchors. So it’s been a great boon for Google to be noticed so kindly by essentially a charitable site promoting math education. What great people from all corners of the world and at all levels who can enjoy Google, until it suddenly died Friday afternoon.

My background is clean, and without a political or social agenda. I am not promoting any specific viewpoint. I teach probability math and that’s it. Have worked with both the Obama administration and advised on polling statistics for the Trump campaign, am an adjunct professor at three top universities, an editor of the peer-reviewed journal of the American Statistical Association, and wrote a best-selling statistics book (all the proceeds of which I gave to charity!)

Read the whole thing.

Google reinstated his accounts, but not before embarrassing itself and further jeopardizing its “safe harbor” protections.

(07:30 AM)


(07:30 AM)

BITCHINEST DAD EVER: Family Forced to Jump Jersey Shore Drawbridge in Their Toyota RAV4.

Terence Naphys, after paying the $1.50 toll at the Middle Thorofare Bridge that connects the Wildwoods and Cape May via Ocean Drive, was heading across the bridge when a steel metal grate suddenly lifted 3 to 6 feet underneath his car, Naphys told Lower Township police.

Naphys was in the car with his wife, his daughter and his daughter’s friend, and he was worried his Toyota RAV4 would fall the 65 feet down into the water. So he accelerated and jumped the gap.

Like a boss.

(07:19 AM)

BRO, DO YOU EVEN SCIENCE? NYT: We Should Trust Climate Scientists Because The Eclipse.

Somebody needs a reminder that weather isn’t climate orbital mechanics.

(07:06 AM)

VIDEO: This Democrat Senator Is Really Trying Hard to Dodge Questions on His Corruption Charges.

He could stand to take some lessons from Nathan Thurm.

(07:06 AM)

JOHN HINDERAKER: Barack Obama’s Legacy of Lies and Broken Promises on Afghanistan. “On issue after issue, Barack Obama passed the buck, making the situation worse than he found it and leaving his successor to pick up the pieces. Health care, military preparedness, the national debt, Iran, Iraq, Syria, North Korea and Afghanistan are some of the instances that come to mind. What is galling is that because he is a Democrat, Obama was never held accountable for his fecklessness (or worse). The press, and the establishment in general, allowed him to skate. . . . Barack Obama’s administration was a horrific failure in just about every way, but he has had the press running interference for him for eight years and counting. His lies and broken promises about Afghanistan are a sobering reminder of what a poor job he did as president.”

(07:00 AM)


Students are being taught by these postmodern professors that there is no truth, that science and empirical facts are tools of oppression by the white patriarchy, and that nearly everyone in America is racist and bigoted, including their own professors, most of whom are liberals or progressives devoted to fighting these social ills. Of the 58 Evergreen faculty members who signed a statement “in solidarity with students” calling for disciplinary action against Weinstein for “endangering” the community by granting interviews in the national media, I tallied only seven from the sciences. Most specialize in English, literature, the arts, humanities, cultural studies, women’s studies, media studies, and “quotidian imperialisms, intermetropolitan geography [and] detournement.” A course called “Fantastic Resistances” was described as a “training dojo for aspiring ‘social justice warriors’” that focuses on “power asymmetries.”

If you teach students to be warriors against all power asymmetries, don’t be surprised when they turn on their professors and administrators. This is what happens when you separate facts from values, empiricism from morality, science from the humanities.

If you create a generation of vipers, you are likely to wind up bit.

(04:59 AM)

IN THE EMAIL, FROM ZOEY IVERS: Atlantis+ (Doors into the Dimensions Book 3).

(04:28 AM)

THAT DAY TRUDEAU BECAME LITERALLY HITLER TRUMP: Trudeau Pulls A Trump, Tells People To Stop Coming To Canada Illegally. MCGA, Eh?

(04:00 AM)


(03:30 AM)

ESPN FLIES PAST FULL POTATO AND INTO TURNIP: ESPN Pulls Asian Announcer Because His Name Is Robert Lee, And That’s Triggering.

(03:00 AM)

DUH: Why are More Women in the Helping Professions? Hint: It’s Not the Patriarchy’s Fault. On account of there being NO patriarchy in the west and all.

(02:30 AM)

NEWS YOU CAN USE: A Navy SEAL explains what to do if you’re attacked by a dog.

(01:30 AM)

ENVIRO-NUTS WANT YOU TO GET SKIN CANCER: Sunscreen could be killing off the world’s coral reefs.

(01:07 AM)

“I’M HELPING”: If you believe you have the high moral ground, why jump off the cliff by posting fake or misleading photos? To be fair:

“The Twitter account @TEN_GOP, which says its an unofficial account for Republicans in Tennessee, tweeted the photo […] The account is not affiliated with the Tennessee Republican Party. The tweet has been deleted.”

Still, if you believe in the strength of your convictions…why make things up? It’s no better than the “hands up, don’t shoot lie” that fooled so many, especially in the smarter-than-you legacy media. I guess we believe what we desperately want to believe…

(01:00 AM)


(12:28 AM)

IF THEY HAD MOTHERS* WOULD THEY KISS THEM WITH THAT MOUTH? This ‘F–k Trump’ lipstick is flying off the shelves.

*I have it on good authority the kind of lefty who’d wear this reproduces by fission.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

(11:41 PM)

ROGER KIMBALL: While They Rage, Trump Builds. “Doubtless there are many things to criticize about Donald Trump. But being racist isn’t among those things. What infuriates his critics—but at the same time affords them so many opportunities to bathe in the gratifying fluid of their putative moral superiority—is that Trump refuses to collude in the destructive, politically correct charade according to which ‘racism’ is the nearly ubiquitous cardinal sin of white America. He is having none of that, and his refusal to go along with the attempted moral blackmail is driving his critics to distraction.”

(11:24 PM)

THEY’RE LUCKY HE DIDN’T KILL THEM HIMSELF, BY HAND: Mattis Just Took an Unannounced Trip to ISIS’s Doorstep to Personally Tell Them They’re About to Die.

(11:00 PM)

AT AMAZON, save on Women’s Lingerie & Sleepwear. Including the Amazon Personal Bra Boutique.

(10:59 PM)

ETHICS BREACH: Durham D.A. admits ideology will influence his prosecutorial discretion.

(10:54 PM)

HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE: USC Misspells Shakespeare On Newly Unveiled Statue.

Cost of attending USC: $69,711 per year.

(10:29 PM)

I BLAME CONFEDERATE STATUES, THE NRA, AND ASIAN SPORTSCASTERS NAMED ROBERT LEE AT ESPN: Chicago murder on the steps of a church tests the faithful. “So this where Chicago is now: Murder on the steps of church. If silence is consent, then Chicago politicians are remarkably silent about murder on church steps in the city. They must like it that way.”

Maybe because the politicians who run Chicago are in bed with the gangs.

(10:09 PM)


As Iowahawk tweets, “We have achieved the Woke Singularity.”

And yes, it sounds like satire. But a Washington Post sportswriter tweets an announcement he was emailed by ESPN when he contacted them about the story:

Also from Iowahawk:

Ken Burns’ documentary on college football is gonna be awesome!


This is your fault, proles.

(10:04 PM)

CONSIDER THE BARREL-BOTTOM TO HAVE BEEN SCRAPED: Howard Dean: If You Vote Republican in 2018, You’re A Racist.

Dems: Vote for us, we got nothin’.

(10:00 PM)

FLASHBACK: Learn from Louisiana, be the help: Lessons from the “Cajun Navy.”

(09:58 PM)

A MAJOR LOSS FOR THE FEDS: Jury refuses to convict in Bundy ranch standoff.

A federal jury in Las Vegas refused Tuesday to convict four defendants who were retried on accusations that they threatened and assaulted federal agents by wielding assault weapons in a 2014 confrontation to stop a cattle roundup near the Nevada ranch of states’ rights figure Cliven Bundy.

In a stunning setback to federal prosecutors planning to try the Bundy family patriarch and two adult sons later this year, the jury acquitted Ricky Lovelien and Steven Stewart of all 10 charges, and delivered not-guilty findings on most charges against Scott Drexler and Eric Parker.

Remember that this is a state and county that went to Obama and Hillary.

(09:29 PM)

YOU CAN’T TRUST GOOGLE TO DO THE RIGHT THING WITHOUT BAD PUBLICITY: Google Folds, Restores Accounts Of Banned Statistics Professor.

(09:14 PM)


The Great Nazi Panic of 2017 will fade away when its sponsors realize that it’s not having the effect on the mass of the normal Americans they hoped for. But that doesn’t mean it hasn’t caused grave damage. The establishment has, in its desperation to return to unchallenged supremacy, eagerly jettisoned its dedication to the concept of free speech. It might not work out the way they hope once there is a national arbiter of what may and may not be thought or spoken. After all, as we found out last November, the person you think is going to be wielding the power isn’t necessarily the person who you thought was going to be wielding the power.

Kurt wrote that yesterday; it dovetails remarkably well with the Washington Post’s insane proposition today that the left should walk away from the concept of free speech. Incidentally, note the article’s conclusion:

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this article misidentified the group that marched in Skokie, Ill., in 1977. It was the American Nazi Party, not the Ku Klux Klan.

Layers and layers of fact checkers and editors hard at work once again – the version of the article quoted at the NewsBusters link above quotes from the author’s original imaginary 1977 KKK rally in Skokie.

(09:04 PM)

TAMARA KEEL: Night Sights, Lights and Lasers for Concealed-Carry Guns.

(08:14 PM)


Nancy Pelosi claims that she doesn’t favor socialized medicine, and has rejected calls to make “single payer,” the Democrats’ favorite euphemism, part of her party’s 2018 campaign. But last Wednesday Keith Ellison, Deputy Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, revealed to a group of party faithful in Minneapolis that it’s all a sham. Pelosi “actually likes the concept.”

The Daily Caller obtained the video; here it is. I especially like the part where Ellison asks, “Is anybody taping me right now?”

When Mitt Romney’s 47 percent comment was surreptitiously videotaped in 2012, that clip was played in a loop during every news segment for days afterwards. But will any member of the DNC-MSM ask Ellison or Pelosi about this?

(08:00 PM)

ANTIDISCRIMINATION LAW’S NEW FRONTIER: Fat Bias Starts Early and Takes a Serious Toll. General Leslie Groves was fat. If prejudice had kept him from heading the Manhattan Project, would it have succeeded?

On the other hand, research also purports to show that the more you associate with overweight people, the more likely you are to gain weight yourself. So does that mean shunning fat people is defensible as self-protection? More seriously, when I see people who are significantly overweight, I don’t mind — I just feel sad because I know that they’re probably not happy being that way. And while it’s true that all you have to do to lose weight is to eat less and exercise more, that’s not as easy as it sounds. On the other hand, I’m not convinced that the “fat acceptance” movement will help. We didn’t reduce the number of smokers in this country by “smoking acceptance.” Though, of course, the reduced number of smokers probably has something to do with the increase in obesity. . . .