This is who they are. This is what they do.

John Oliver on Jay Leno’s call for civility: Remember Monica Lewinsky? Karen Townsend – “Last week former late night talk show host Jay Leno called for “a bit more civility” in public discourse and now he must be punished.

“Monica Lewinsky and Bill Clinton were savaged in the press and on the radio during that scandal. Both sides of the aisle went after them but for different reasons. The left smeared Lewinsky because her sexual relationship with Clinton threatened his presidency once it was exposed. The right went after Clinton for his behavior. The real hypocrisy was the left’s treatment toward a young woman being taken advantage of by the most powerful man in the world. This pre-dates the current cries from first, second, and third-wave feminists to believe all women, period. Lewinsky wasn’t so innocent as not to know what she was doing but the left was more concerned about saving Clinton’s presidency than they were about Lewinsky. She was slut-shamed like all of Clinton’s conquests.

The liberal mob always demands an apology for any manner of speech that doesn’t fit into current groupthink. Calls for civility and standing up for yourself must be squashed and mocked. This is who they are.

Tectonic plates are moving underneath Fox News. Thomas Lifson – “Under capitalism, ownership brings control, and Fox News has a new corporate parent that began trading yesterday on NASDAQ.”

“The rise of Fox News as the sole mass media counterpoint to the progressive media establishment changed American politics, and it has been a long-held goal of the Left, particularly Soros-funded attack dog Media Matters, to either destroy it or politically neuter it, thereby monopolizing all media with a large national reach. So, the question naturally arises, does this new ownership under the control of a new generation of Murdochs signal a chance for the Left to accomplish this critical goal?

CNN Interviews Brad Parscale, Then Accidentally Notes the DNC 2020 Strategy. sundance – “What Tapper notes as the urgent data collection priority of the DNCis specifically the reason why the club has enlisted Beto to draw-in the community they need to harvest.”

“Planning, scheming, endless meetings, talking points, operational organization and strategy is one of the key elements of the Democrat party. This is what they do. This is all they do. It might seem weird at first, but the DNC club is not chaotic; and, from my perspective, that is their weakness. It makes them predictable.The Democrats rarely, if ever, go off script.

New York prosecutors throw out Constitution to charge Manafort. Jonathan Turley – “The New York state charges that Vance filed against Manafort appear to run afoul of state and federal protections against double jeopardy, or being prosecuted twice for the same underlying conduct.

“The problem is that the case appears not only constitutionally flawed but ethically challenged, coming right out of the Max Bialystock School of Prosecution. I have long been one of the longest and loudest critics of Manafort. He is a corrupt and despicable person who deserves the two sentences that could keep him in jail for the rest of his life. However, it is not his crimes but his association with President Trump that has driven the manic effort to charge him in New York. In this current age of rage over Trump, Manafort is a readily available surrogate for selective prosecution.

For more than a year, leading New York state prosecutors have openly pledged to get Manafort on some undefined crime to prevent Trump from releasing him from jail on a presidential pardon. They promised to find crimes that could be alleged in the state system, which would not at all be impacted by a presidential pardon. To do that, they only had to strip all citizens of certain rights. Former New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman pushed the legislature to rescind a core protection against double jeopardy to allow him to charge Manafort on the same criminal conduct that he would later be sentenced for in federal court.

When I read the complaint against Manafort, I was struck not only by the overlap but the overkill.

What emerges is a picture that should trouble everyone who values blind and fair justice.

The greatest danger is not that Vance will fail on constitutional grounds but that he may succeed.

SCOTUS Gives Trump a Big Win on Immigration. David Catron – “Court rules that criminal aliens can be held without bond during deportation proceedings.” The issue for the Left is about discrimination between citizen and non-citizen; between criminal and non-criminal.

“On Tuesday the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Trump administration in Nielsen v. Preap, allowing the Department of Homeland Security to detain illegal aliens without bond while awaiting deportation for committing crimes within our borders.

The respondents challenged the Trump administration’s interpretation of the Immigration and Nationality Act, which requires DHS to take any alien convicted of a deportable crime into custody “whether the alien is released on parole, supervised release, or probation, and without regard to whether the alien may be arrested or imprisoned again for the same offense.”

The basic point Alito is making here is that the text of the statute means what it says, and no amount of grammatical Jiu Jitsu will change that meaning.

Not all the justices took this view, of course. The position of the minority was laid out in a dissent written by Justice Stephen Breyer, who focused on the rights of the aliens impacted by Tuesday’s ruling.

One could hardly ask for a better example of what’s wrong with liberal jurisprudence. It isn’t the Supreme Court’s job to reflect on the “likely intent” of Congress.

Part VI: DC & MD v Trump—Can the President of the United States get Married or Divorced? Seth Barrett Tillman – another example or torturing words and phrases for political insanity via a judicial oligarchy. This example is about the emoluments clause. It’s what they do, It’s who they are.

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bitter-enders and moral hubris define a fifth column

Judge Jeanine is right — Fox News is wrong. M. Catharine Evans – “The funny thing is the judge’s logical examination of the origin of Omar’s anti-Semitic statements was neither bigoted, nor false, nor inciteful. … She asked a valid question.

“Why does the never-ending call for “dialogue” between non-Muslims and Muslims in this country exclude asking Jeanine’s hard question relating to possible conflicts between a Muslim congresswoman’s fidelity to Islamic teachings and the Constitution?

“The dogma lives loudly” in a Catholic judicial nominee but not in a Muslim congresswoman?

Fox’s censorship of Judge Jeanine over a genuine analysis and probing into Omar’s anti-Semitic comments puts them in the same league as other networks and social media giants who allow open criticism of Christianity and Judaism while suppressing any cynical commentary concerning Islam.

When the popular Judge Jeanine gets removed from her show for confronting Jew hatred by an elected representative, yet Omar, who had to delete anti-Semitic tweets, and who is coddled by an Islamic extremist organization known as CAIR, gets an apology, something is insanely upside down over at Fox.

When Cabin Boys Attack. Julie Kelly – “Embittered by their humiliating miscalculation of Trump’s candidacy and shamelessly contorting their previous views to be able to contradict the president, these anti-Trump “conservatives” viciously attack anyone who dares to support the president. This includes Hanson.” It is the assault and how it is conducted – and how it is rationalized – that tells the story.

“In a particularly vile hit piece posted on The Bulwark, the new blog of Weekly Standard refugees who were left unemployed after the publication was shuttered in December, Gabe Schoenfeld accused Hanson of defending evil—that evil being President Trump. Bulwark editor Charlie Sykes recently threatened to “raise the opportunity costs” for pro-Trump commentators, Hanson specifically. To do so, Sykes enlisted the facile services of Schoenfeld, an advisor for the failed Mitt Romney presidential campaign, to pretend to write a book review that was little more than an ad hominem attack on Hanson.

The Bulwark and its enablers like French continue to do more damage to our political discourse while professing to elevate it. The depth of their intellectual rot is matched only by their witless political sense and their schoolyard bully tactics. But no doubt their leftist benefactors are proud of their work in the service of genuine social evil.

Neo, on the dirty dozen in the emergency declaration case, thinks ‘reasonable minds can disagree.’ She falls for a misdirection. The issue used as an excuse, usurping of legislative powers, is just being used for moral preening and hate. Hubris and hate and dishonesty are not subjects where reasonable minds can disagree.

The Nevertrump Bitter-Enders. Bruce Thornton – “Still functioning as a fifth column for the progressive “resistance.”

“make no mistake, no matter how seemingly marginalized or absurd, the bitter-enders are still functioning as a fifth column for the progressive “resistance,” providing a “conservative” and “bipartisan” cover for the Democrats’ rush to move America farther to the left in order to change our Constitutional Republic into a socialist technocracy.

The bitter-enders now housed in The Bulwark have no response to that stark fact. At this point, their peevish, snarky, snotty commentary financed by the left serves no purpose other than to give moral support to a party that has degenerated into a juvenile congeries of failed, illiberal, and dangerous policies. That’s not much of a recommendation for the NeverTrumpers’ alleged fealty to “principles,” “conservatism,” or “democratic norms” the bitter-enders claim they are defending.

Then there is the Connecticut Supreme Court’s assault on the 2nd amendment …

It was terrorism by violence, now it is by flooding the zone with immigrants, with harassment, and with legal system abuse. The war is on and so many are unaware, even those on the front line.

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Bury your head. Don’t call a spade what it is.

We Cannot Bury Our Heads in the Sand about Ilhan Omar. E. Jeffrey Ludwig

“In effect, then, her comments blew her cover. She cannot simply be seen as a highly motivated immigrant who has made her way to one of the higher offices in the land, someone who is simply living out the Horatio Alger ideal of rags to riches in America. She has revealed herself as someone with an agenda, an agenda where she is willing to attack the community most in favor of Islamic immigration and the diversity she seems to represent.

Not only is she filled with intolerable hatred, but she is a kind of Trojan horse.

Then look at what happened to Jeanine Pirro (The Hill). “Last week, Fox News condemned remarks made by Pirro after the host on air questioned whether Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) is loyal to Sharia because she wears a hijab.” The sensitivity is selective and irrational.

So many are being attacked and assaulted for calling a spade a spade … 

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Scapegoats

Christchurch, Conservatism, and Fascism. Matthew Pinna – “In fact, conservatism had nothing to do with this. We need to understand exactly how people like this shooter think, and how the media is doing that admirable goal a disservice.

“Both media and public officials, in New Zealand and elsewhere have chosen to lay the blame for the killings on “conservatives.”

How do we know that the shooter isn’t a conservative? For starters, he explicitly says that he detests conservatism twice, once in the “Q&A” and again in his more ideological section, where he devotes a whole page to it

Instead, the shooter admits that he is an “actual fascist” — an “eco-fascist,” to be exact.

It needs to be understood that the racism and discrimination seen from historical examples of fascism aren’t mere elements or curable side effects of the ideology — they are fascism.

people need to stay out of the way of those who want to fight back. Don’t sweep what he wrote under the rug and don’t blame Republicans or Democrats for “radicalizing” this shooter. Now more than ever, we need to debate specifically against Fascists — just as we did against Communists back in the day — for Christchurch, and the future Christchurches that will happen unless we change our course.

The New Zealand shooting stopped when a brave man took away the shooter’s gun. John Sexton – “As usual, after an event like this, the shooter is getting a lot of attention. It’s understandable though it doesn’t seem that complicated in this case. Hopefully, we’ll learn more about some of the victims and the people who were heroes in the worst situation imaginable.” And maybe learn about how the social phobia about guns hindered their efforts?

Observations on Christchurch. John Hinderaker – “Early reports of catastrophic events like these always turn out to be wrong in some respects, but it does appear that armed self-defense was the key to the less tragic outcome at Linwood. Murder is the result of human evil and will never be eradicated in this world, but if more people arm themselves, there will be fewer mass murder events.

“The deplorable Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez tied the murders to President Trump. It is noteworthy that liberals attribute almost superhuman powers to Donald Trump, attributing responsibility to him for pretty much anything that goes on in the world. The only phenomena for which the Left does not assign responsibility to the president are the intended, beneficent results of his own policies.

2) Brenton Tarrant published a typical mass murderer’s manifesto in which he described himself as an “eco-fascist,” expressed hatred for conservatism and said that Communist China is his ideal country. Tarrant is an environmentalist who bought the global warming hype hook, line and sinker. His closest analogy is perhaps the Unabomber. …

3) From a policy standpoint, the only lesson that can be drawn from the Christchurch massacre is reflected in the difference in the casualty totals between the two attacks. Forty-one were killed at the Dean Ave. mosque, the first one that was targeted, where the murderer had plenty of time and at one point returned to his vehicle to reload. There were only seven killed at the Linwood mosque because one of the worshippers was armed:

Hossenfelder demands $10,000 from me through Czech lawyers. Luboš Motl – “The letter is formulated as if she demands a ransom. It adds a new level to her debatable methods to earn money.

“I think it’s absolutely stunning. She’s on her violent campaign against the whole field that I find dear and against its practitioners and she just wants to silence me …

My knowledge of the law is next to non-existent. I have no idea whether a party that is attacked in this Blitzkrieg way has an effective way to defend itself. I don’t know whom I would be inviting as a witness to show that she’s been helped by affirmative action, her physics is not good etc. Your recommendations are welcome. If you’re extremely rich, your financial help would be welcome, too.

The current Tucker Carlson saga is another example of this approach to ideological warfare. Threaten, intimidate, attrit their resources, humiliate, shut them down. The media is complicit, too. Consider this headline: “Twelve Righteous Republicans (and 41 Cowards) (Bret Stephens/New York Times)” – it’s not about the merits, it’s about ad hominem judgment. Contrast that to neo’s cite of Tom Cotton.

Trump vetoes Senate’s block on his emergency declaration. neo – “They say it’s not because they don’t like the wall, but because they think the president exceeded his powers. … When I looked into the powers presidents have been given to declare national emergencies, I think it’s fairly clear that Trump did not exceed his powers.” There is an interesting contrast that Congress did vote on executive regulations that Trump put before them early in his administration. Here’s from Tom Cotton:

“Now, I’m sympathetic to arguments that the National Emergencies Act is too broad and gives the executive branch too much power. That’s a reasonable debate to have. Believe me, Congress has ceded too much power to the executive for more than a century, expanding an administrative state that increasingly deprives our people of a meaningful say in their government. So I invite my Democratic colleagues to reconsider the wisdom of this path. Maybe we can reform the EPA. Perhaps we can require up-or-down votes in Congress to approve big regulations so politicians can show some accountability for once. I’m ready for those debates. Believe me, I’m ready. But in the meantime, don’t pretend we didn’t delegate all these powers, or that it’s lawless for the executive to use laws we passed, just because you deplore him.

What Trump does not do…and it’s fantastic. Majid Mohammadi – “I will provide examples of what Trump has not done and what King Barack H. Obama and King George W. Bush did. Here is a list

“When Democrats lost to a non-politician in 2016, they could not swallow the failure and began to degrade their opponent’s victory (by manufacturing “Russia collusion”), insult people who voted for the winner (calling them racist), and assassinate the character of the winner (calling him a dictator). To make the case for the third act, they invented a story that Donald Trump likes dictators and wants to be one and will not leave office if not elected in 2020. But his actions show the opposite. Trump does not want to be a king or a dictator, while his predecessors behaved as if they wanted to be.

A scapegoat is one thing. The judgment is another. The total lack of support in reality for vehement name calling is another. It isn’t getting better. It seems to be getting worse.

 

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Language of the dead

Andrew McCarthy on Manafort and double jeopardy. neo – “I agree with McCarthy that this should make everyone afraid. … But it doesn’t. Some are applauding.”

Waging War Against the Dead. Victor Davis Hanson – “Not since the iconoclasts of the Byzantine Empire or the epidemic of statue destruction during the French Revolution has the world seen anything like the current war on the past.

“The West prides itself in the idea that liberal societies would never descend into such nihilism. Think again.

such attacks usually revealed a lack of confidence. The general insecurity of the present could supposedly be remedied by destroying mute statutes or the legacies of the dead, who could offer no rebuttal.

opportunism, not logic, always seems to determine the targets of destruction.

in the past there usually has been a cowardly element to historical erasure. Destruction was often done at night by roving vandals, or was sanctioned by extremist groups who bullied objectors.

ignorance both accompanies and explains the arrogance of historical erasure, past and present.

The past is not a melodrama but more often a tragedy. Destroying history will not make you feel good about the present. Studying and learning from it might.

I Love the DisneyWorld Monorail. Here is Why It is A Terrible Public Transit Technology. District 48 – “When I talk about industrial design, I often use a scale where 1 is the Boston City Hall and 10 is the Disneyworld monorail.” … “Disney has essentially abandoned the monorail for all its future expansions. … it relies on busses now almost exclusively for internal transport.” Here’s why. It’s another tale of reality meeting dreams and fantasies.

EDITORIAL: One tongue for all. Washington Times – “The idea of making English the official language is back.

Massively incorrect’: Point-by-point rebuttal to Michael Mann’s Newsweek smear of Trump, Greenpeace co-founder Dr. Moore & Princeton’s Dr. Happer — Update: Michael Mann responds: “Ooooh deniers. Did I touch a nerve? I’m sawee.” The response to being caught in flagrant lies is telling. And indicative.

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Fear and flail

Media Matters has been throwing stones at Tucker Carlson from its own glass house. Thomas Lifson – “But Tucker fought back. I don’t know who it was, but someone used the same strategy on Angelo Carusone, the president of Media Matters, and pored through his published opus.” And “the culpability of his media handmaidens.” is duly noted as well. People may be getting rather tired of the ad hominem stretches intended to destroy and impugn?

The Creepiest Part of the Lisa Page Transcript. David Catron – “The real news is how fearful the denizens of the DOJ and FBI were of incurring Clinton’s wrath”. Where do you think all of allegations about Trump being fascist, etc, came from? Projection?

Lynch Testimony Reveals Bias and Intent For Failing To Give Trump Defensive Briefing. Sara Carter – “it is the key finding that won’t bode well for the FBI and DOJ.” It comes down to the idea that the role of government is to protect its citizens, including candidates for political office. Not persecute them.

Report: ICE finding ways around sanctuary policies. Jazz Shaw – “The Chair of New Mexico’s Bernalillo County Commission was (direct quote) “surprised and horrified” to find that known criminal illegal aliens were, in at least some cases, being taken into custody for processing, prosecution, and possible deportation. This is apparently what passes for “a bad thing” in some Democratic circles.” Those promoting sanctuary areas seem to become appalled when others also “pick and choose what they want to observe.” The assault on 2nd amendment rights in places like Nevada, Colorado, and New Mexico provide examples.

“It’s not limited to just New Mexico, thankfully. The report goes on to state that the same practice has been observed in places including Philadelphia, Chicago and multiple communities across California. Are we surprised? These are real human beings we’re talking about here, not just dry policy points on county resolutions. Some of these law enforcement officers have been on the job for decades and have built relationships with their colleagues across the local, state and federal levels. They’re all interested in the same things… enforcing the law and keeping people safe. Is it really all that shocking to find that they stay in touch in their free time and even help each other out? …

But who is going to be punished for all of this activity? The cops. Not the criminal illegal aliens. These local government officials would rather go after their own police in the interest of scoring political points. The world has turned upside down and our law enforcement officers increasingly find themselves with nobody in the government willing to back them up.

San Jose police chief: Sanctuary policies shielded a suspected murderer from deportation six times. John Sexton – “It makes me wonder if the fact that Carranza was homeless played into this as well.”

How petty is Nancy Pelosi? This petty. Jazz Shaw – “We understand that the Democrats are all about the #RESIST movement now and doing everything they can to be confrontational when it comes to the White House. But couldn’t we at least pretend for a while that the co-equal branches are all playing for the same team?

Trump-speak: love it or hate it. neo – “I was analyzing one of Nancy Pelosi’s statements for my previous post today. I found myself in a sort of awe at how much she packed into a couple of seemingly simple sentences: so much hypocrisy, so much unctuous fake nobility, so much artificiality, a little hidden dagger, so many hidden messages.

“So, where does Trump fall on this spectrum? The first time I ever watched him give a political speech—and this was back when I thought he’d be a disaster for the right—I was impressed by a number of things … All this time has passed and that aspect of Trump hasn’t faltered: he makes all other politicians look boring and he looks natural doing whatever it is that he does.

those who really really really dislike Trump seem to dislike him in very visceral and personal terms. One thing the ones on the right don’t like is his lack of intellectualism. Another thing his enemies on both sides don’t like is that they interpret the seeming naturalism of his speech as meaning that he is someone who says whatever pops into his head, with no filter and little thought. I think noting could be further from the truth.

I think what’s happening is that Trump is every bit as strategic/tactical as any politician, perhaps even more so. …

I think what’s happening is that Trump is every bit as strategic/tactical as any politician, perhaps even more so.

CA sea level rise alarmist study ignores 30 years of NOAA data with no coastal sea level rise acceleration. Larry Hamlin – “Climate alarmists and their supporting media conveniently conceal the fact that their flawed claims have been hyped for the last 30 years as they continue to try again and again to make the same repeated but flawed claims apparently hoping that the public will forget their long track record of failure and exaggeration.

“The recent climate alarmist propaganda study hyped by the media speculating that CA coastal sea level rise levels of 1 to 2 meters (about 3 to 6 feet) by 2100 “could” occur along with associated grossly exaggerated damage estimates are based solely on invalid “computer models” which ignore the extensive measured NOAA tide gauge data which shows that 30 year old climate alarmist claims of accelerating coastal sea level rise are unsupported by actual measured data.

Greenpeace co-founder and former President of Greenpeace Canada Patrick Moore noted in a recent article addressing the hidden political drivers behind the global campaign of climate alarmist propaganda claims which he characterized as follows:

“And so you’ve got the green movement creating stories that instill fear in the public. You’ve got the media echo chamber — fake news — repeating it over and over and over again to everybody that they’re killing their children. And then you’ve got the green politicians who are buying scientists with government money to produce fear for them in the form of scientific-looking materials. And then you’ve got the green businesses, the rent-seekers, and the crony capitalists who are taking advantage of massive subsidies, huge tax write-offs, and government mandates requiring their technologies to make a fortune on this. And then, of course, you’ve got the scientists who are willingly, they’re basically hooked on government grants.”

Until CA citizens wake up and stop allowing themselves to be herded into supporting these scientifically unsupported climate alarmist propaganda claims the state will only become more and more government controlled and dominated with loss of power and influence residing within its citizenry.

Flailing?

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Everything is racist. Harassment has no imagination.

Yes, Trump is target of ‘presidential harassment’. Byron York – “it adds up to a pile-on of unprecedented proportions, by and large the work of blue-state Democrats who stand to gain politically if their investigations succeed in crippling the president.

“In a recent email exchange, I asked Andrew Coan, a University of Arizona law professor who is the author of the book Prosecuting the President, whether there is precedent for a U.S. Attorney’s office conducting a wide-ranging, open-ended investigation of a sitting president.

“The short answer is no,” Coan responded. “I am aware of no comparable prior investigation.”

The point is, the scrutiny directed at the president from all sides, not oversight of his administration or even investigations into his election, so far exceeds anything in the past that it could well qualify as presidential harassment.

Google Manager Said Company Must Stop ‘Fake News’ Because ‘That’s How Trump Won’. Allum Bokhari – “The employee also alleged the existence of official training courses at Google dedicated to “bashing conservatives and Trump supporters.”” When people know to the point of irrational belief, all sorts of ‘strange’ behaviors surface.

Paul Manafort Was an Agent of Ukraine, Not Russia. Andrew C. McCarthy – “He is a scoundrel, but he was never a Kremlin operative.

“Understand: Paul Manafort would never have been prosecuted if he had not joined Donald Trump’s campaign. He would not have been prosecuted if Hillary Clinton had won the 2016 election and spared Democrats the need to conjure up a reason to explain their defeat — something other than nominating a lousy candidate who stopped campaigning too early.

Manafort’s Ukrainian work was not a secret.

Racism in the knitting community. neo – “It’s so absurd it’s hard not to joke about it, and joking is appropriate. But there is nothing really funny about it. In just a few short years, these SJWs have gone from unhinged and powerful to more and more unhinged and more and more powerful. Knitting is just one community this has infected; there are plenty others.

Democratic presidents behaved a lot worse than Trump in the White House. Victor Davis Hanson – get your historical perspective here!

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The division becomes ever more clear. Consequences mount.

The Left’s Hate-Crime Hoax Machine. B. Klein – “This widespread deception by trusted institutions and legislation erodes people’s basic civil rights, reduces religion to “hate doctrine,” and quells free speech.”

Basically, those occupying this third position publicly attack people at their psychological core by asserting:

1. Nothing you believe (have been told or taught or know or is common sense) is true. Brain scrub.

2. Everything you or your kind have achieved was taken by violence and exploitation from the rightful owners. Not agreeing means you are a bigoted hater. Bad person.

3. You are complicit in all historical crimes and reap the benefits from them. Guilty person.

4. There can be no dissent. We are the voice of the new God, and the sky is falling. Heed us now. Saved person complies.

5. We are right and will not trifle with your Western logic, ethics, or facts; literature; history. They are all the tools of exploitation and oppression that you have used to destroy us and others. In fact, we will not even be seen speaking to you. Isolated person.

Hoaxes are not isolated from one another and do not take place in a vacuum.

All but 6 Democrats oppose resolution against illegal aliens voting. Jazz Shaw – “What’s up next for the donkey party? Shutting down all Christian churces as “hate groups?”

The politics of the Democrats’ “anti-hate” resolution. Paul Mirengoff – “Omar’s remarks, the attempts of Nancy Pelosi, Jim Clyburn, and the 2020 Democrats to defend Omar, and the unwillingness of Democrats to pass a simple anti-anti-Semitism resolution remain the scandal here.

Solar energy may have caused California’s wildfires. Kevin Mooney – “Taxpayer-subsidized, ratepayer-funded utilities that may be on the hook for billions of dollars in liabilities point to climate change as the major factor standing behind the recent California wildfires.” It’s all about appeasing the activists and then denying undesired consequence.

“But what if the blame belongs not with climate change, but with climate change policies that the utilities and their benefactors in government favor? There’s some evidence for this that insurance companies and displaced California residents might be interested in learning more about. As taxpayers and utility ratepayers, they are all spending part of their workday financing solar energy schemes that may have led to high-pressure conditions affecting electrical equipment, which in turn sparked the fires. How’s that?

Evidence? We don’t want no stinkin’ evidence!

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What is normal, anyway?

None of this is normal. Fred Barnes – “Half a dozen House committees with Democrats in charge are investigating Trump, his administration, family, appointees, political affairs, businesses, lifestyle, and various antics.

“This is abnormal. There’s never been an offensive so vast against a president by his rival party. It took only two committees — one in the Senate, one in the House — to look into the Watergate scandal and drive President Nixon out of the White House in 1974. But Trump is more popular today than Nixon was, and Democrats are taking no chances he might escape their grasp.

Democrats are basically conducting a fishing expedition.

Wow – Canadian Government/Taxpayer Funded Media (CBC) Purchases Anti-Trump Billboards and Transit Signs. sundance – “Apparently Canadian media are taking their hatred for U.S. President Donald Trump to new levels of opposition.”

“Then again, it’s likely the Canadian government recognizes the economic and trade policies of U.S. President Donald Trump; policies that stop the exploitation of the U.S. market; is part of the reason for their current contraction.

This short-sighted and vulgar political campaign against President Donald Trump would very well make matters worse within Canada.

The Omar Affair is a turning point. Thomas Lifson – “The world’s oldest hate finally, officially has found purchase in America with the support of the world’s oldest political party, the Democratic Party of the United States.”

“With Jew-haters in charge now, voters potentially handing power to Democrats in 2020 would launch America down a path whose endpoint will be a catastrophe not just for the Jews — the canary in the coal mine — but for the Republic that the founders bequeathed to us and to “our sacred posterity.”

antisemitism? check.pro-terrorist? check. infanticide? check. self defense or national security? no way, Jose.

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Blindly, blithely going along with hubris and good intentions

Politico: Senate Dems “outraged” over McConnell use of mysterious precedent to change judicial confirmation rules. Ed Morrissey – “Reid and his fellow Democrats ignored the clear historical precedents to claim that they could accomplish this without consulting Republicans.” It’s an example of actual behavior that makes a farce out of arguments that Trump’s emergency declaration is setting precedent, for example.

“What has followed since then hasn’t been “dramatic and historic,” but predictable and mundane. Reid, Durbin, and Schumer set the precedent, and McConnell the Institutionalist has followed it for his own purposes. You’d never know this by reading the Politico article, but the record on this is abundantly clear, as were the consequences at the time that the Democratic trio dropped the nuclear bomb on the Senate. McConnell warned them that they would live to regret it — and now they have.

And since Politico doesn’t provide any of this backstory, readers will miss the hilarious irony of Schumer’s counter-offer to McConnell

Obama paved the way for anti-white rhetoric. neo – “The phrase “typical white” as a form of criticism by people in public life (particularly on Twitter) has been normed and is quite common.” Double standards in justice, in racism, and other issues measure distance from reality. See also Anti-Semitism: it’s all the rage – “In this country, those first two elements (the left and a portion of some of the newer Muslim arrivals) are the main protagonists.

Customs officer injured when gun goes off at Las Vegas airport. Katelyn Newberg – “He was injured after his gun “accidentally” discharged.” It’s called mishandling firearms. Guns don’t fire by themselves no matter how much some people want to believe that they do.

When People Without Gun Experience Pass Gun Laws. Kris Kobach – “The Democrats’ latest legislative achievement in Nancy Pelosi’s House of Representatives is a perfect example of what happens when people who have no clue about a subject draft legislation on the topic.

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Fantasy rules

The Left? Seething with apoplectic rage. The right? Happy and optimistic. Patricia McCarthy – “Among the many, many things that starkly define the differences between the Left and the right, none is more wretched than the difference in how they approach life.”

“So infuriated by Trump’s victory and his many successes in office, these people are willing to become Stalinist thugs and hope no one notices. Nadler and Schiff are among the most distressed Democrats in Congress. They need mental health help. They are spinning themselves into oblivion. The American people are not nearly as stupid as they think. As it happens, there is an increasing number of people in Congress who actually are very stupid, shockingly ignorant of the Constitution and American history, and they are getting the most attention of late.

The Left, wallowing in its misery and acting out, is bringing about its own demise. Yes, leftists retain a radical, vicious base, those people who are triggered by red hats to violence.

Assembly bill calls for less punitive discipline plan in schools. Amelia Pak – “Nevada schools would implement a less punitive, more reflective form of discipline under a new bill heard by the Assembly Committee on Education on Tuesday.” i.e. Nothing learned from the Florida School Shooting episode. This is what happens when a state is Californicated. Fantasy rules.

Momo Hoax Shows America’s Susceptibility To Bullshit Goes Well Beyond Social Media. Karl Bode – “Americans’ susceptibility to bullshit is somehow seen as a new phenomenon, and Twitter and Facebook are exclusively to blame for American heads getting filled with gravel and disinformation.

“Ultimately the hoax spread to major news outlets that perpetuated it via “bothsideism” news coverage that failed to adequately explain that neither the game nor Momo were actually real. Take The Washington Post, for example …

The dysfunction was global, and was often aided with the help of celebrities, schools, and law enforcement officials.

Hoaxes wouldn’t work if we cultivated stronger critical thinking skills (read: improved education) and focused on finding ways to finance and reward quality reporting.

30 years of NOAA tide gauge data debunk 1988 Senate hearing climate alarmist claims. Larry Hamlin – “this update now providing 30 years of actual data since the infamous 1988 Senate hearings that launched the U.S. climate alarmist political propaganda campaign.

“In all more than 200 coastal locations are included in these measurements with more than 100 of these coastal locations with recorded data periods in excess of 50 years in duration. None of these updated NOAA tide gauge measurement data records show coastal location sea level rise acceleration occurring anywhere on the U.S. coasts or Pacific or Atlantic island groups.

Three decades after the politically driven speculation and conjecture offered at these 1988 Senate hearings NOAA tide gauge data fails to confirm or otherwise support these alarmist claims.

Note the “acceleration” specification. There has been a steady rise since at least the civil war times. Rebounding from the last glaciation and other natural causes are most likely behind it. The alarmists would have you believe that their should be a ‘hockey stick’ like curve to this and that hasn’t happened. Perhaps most telling is that, for them, this is an advocacy debate, not an effort to learn. Fantasy rules.

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Witch hunt to deny free speech?

The House launches its expected fishing expedition against the Great Orange Whale, Moby Donald. neo – “That net is very wide, isn’t it? But hey, they’ll do anything to harpoon Moby Donald.

“I can’t recall anything even remotely like this, in terms of scope, against a sitting president. Watergate was mainly about Watergate, as far as I know. Even Whitewater was relatively circumscribed in nature, and mostly was handled by a succession of independent counsels. The Lewinski investigation was, likewise, comparatively limited and also involved an independent counsel (Ken Starr, who had originally started with the Whitewater matter).

The analogy to those investigations is the Mueller investigation. That’s been going on for nearly two years, and during that time Mueller has had access to the same people Nadler is pursuing, and has not found much of anything to implicate Trump. Democrats are upset about that, so they are going to try again. Whether their plan is to impeach Trump (they probably have the House votes to do that, but it would be dumb without some sort of smoking gun that could gain enough votes in the Senate to convict him) or whether they just want to try to engage in constant innuendos and smears from now to the 2020 election in hopes of damaging him further (that’s my leading theory at the moment), this is a deeply troubling although completely expected development. Another goal of this investigation—and one I would think had already been sufficiently met, but I guess the Democrats see no reason not to make the point ever more clear—is to frighten anyone away who might even consider working under Trump.

So one of the purposes of squeezing Cohen, the noted perjurer, and getting him to testify against Trump in the absence of any proof except the word of a known flagrant liar, is to set the scene for further investigations based on Cohen’s allegations. It’s a bit like the Steele dossier, isn’t it? You take a lie and make it the basis for an investigation to trap more little fish in your net in hopes of finally catching the big fish.

People who hate Trump—and they are legion—will be overjoyed. I’m wondering, though, how the vast middle will respond to this. I also wonder how vast the middle actually is anymore.

Net neutrality and the culture of contempt. Will Baird – “But the final speaker of the day struck a different tone. A business professor, the speaker described net neutrality as a “life-and-death situation” for entrepreneurs, whom he has advised to leave the country.

“His remarks continued in this vein, exclaiming that we should not be “having this debate in an academic sense in a way that…legitimizes the other side.” After describing net neutrality skeptics as Flat-Earthers who want to destroy the American Dream for entrepreneurs who are “trying to make our planet a better place,” he concluded by stating that the fact that we are even discussing the issue “makes me think, Oh My God, where am I?”

I sat in stunned silence. The conference effectively closed with a plea to the audience, consisting mostly of law students and interested lawyers, to not even acknowledge the ideas that have shaped my academic career. I am not afraid of conflict; I love policy debates, and given where I stand on issues, it’s usually not hard to find someone who disagrees with me. But this ground had shifted from ideas to tribalism. …

Unfortunately, this dynamic has increasingly become the hallmark of the net neutrality debate. No one has felt it more than Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai, who has suffered an endless stream of social media vitriol, harassment of himself and his family, and death threats because of his support for the Restoring Internet Freedom Order. The effect of this dynamic is to shut down policy discussion and instead relegate the issue to the raw power struggles of the political arena.

The list of issues where this happens is long. Climate whatever, vaccinations, chemicalz, GMO, pesticides, plastics, abortion, energy, natural whatever, Fake News™ … the behaviors are common and easily observed. Even international trade brings AEI (source of the article) into this set of behaviors.

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Greek or Hebrew?

The Life Extensionist’s Guide to Logical Fallacies. Nicola Bagalà – “Logical fallacies can be tough to spot, both for the people committing them and for the people listening

“The following is a list of common logical fallacies that usually show up during life extension debates. It may be useful for your advocacy efforts, but bear in mind that the right way to go about rebutting fallacious reasoning is not simply pointing out “You committed a fallacy; your argument is invalid”; in fact, you’d better avoid mentioning the word “fallacy” altogether. What you are likely to get this way is simply a lot of eye-rolling; your message will probably not get across, and you will come across as an insufferable pedant, even if you’re right. I’ve personally met people who don’t seem to think that a logical fallacy in their reasoning is such a big deal. Debating with this kind of person is probably a waste of time, but in general, people might be more receptive if you politely explain why their reasoning doesn’t work, providing different examples and avoiding a lecturing attitude at all costs.

The Hebrew Bible and the West. Mike Zimmerman – “I encountered the writings and thinking of Professor Kalman Kaplan (a psychologist at the University of Illinois at Chicago) and his colleague Dr. Paul Cantz (of Adler University) … These scholars point out that there was a distinct Hebrew-Jewish tradition at the same time and in opposition to the Greek thinkers of roughly the two centuries before the Common Era.”

Psychology Gone Crazy: Time to Decertify the DSM-5. Mark A. Hewitt – “A national diagnostic and statistical manual should not be subject to social justice and party politics.

Will Rand Paul sink Trump’s emergency declaration? Nope. Jazz Shaw – “I wanted to address one talking point that Rand Paul appears to have inherited from the Democrats. They’re all claiming that Trump is “spending money that hasn’t been appropriated by Congress.” It’s a nice sound bite, but that’s really not true. For better or worse, the funding in question was already appropriated by Congress for the military. And as I discussed previously, there are already at least two laws on the books (passed by Congress and never repealed) that allow for military funding to be moved around in this fashion.” Amazing. Ditching responsibilities for national security using a lie to rationalize the position.

Nevada Democrats pushing to join popular vote compact. Colton Lochhead – It’s pushing for mob rule and reducing Nevada’s influence in national government. It another one of those logical fallacies writ large where rational thinking gives way to what everyone else seems to think.

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The core of community but hubris impedes.

Why Renewables Can’t Save the Planet. Michael Shellenberger – “I came to understand the environmental implications of the physics of energy.” Illustrating the abysmal failure in science education over the last forty years as even basic facts and reasoning have gone by the board. But Reality does not stand aside and will surface no matter how you try to hide it. The problem is that the process can take time and cause much suffering. Hubris gets in the way

“In other words, the energy density of the fuel determines its environmental and health impacts. Spreading more mines and more equipment over larger areas of land is going to have larger environmental and human safety impacts.

France shows that moving from mostly nuclear electricity to a mix of nuclear and renewables results in more carbon emissions, due to using more natural gas, and higher prices, to the unreliability of solar and wind.

I think it’s natural that those of us who became active on climate change gravitated toward renewables. They seemed like a way to harmonize human society with the natural world. Collectively, we have been suffering from an appeal-to-nature fallacy no different from the one that leads us to buy products at the supermarket labeled “all natural.” But it’s high time that those of us who appointed ourselves Earth’s guardians should take a second look at the science, and start questioning the impacts of our actions.

How low will they go in their hate of Trump Obsession? Jeff Crouere – “Having two summits with North Korea within a year after decades of intensifying threats signifies a significant improvement in relations between the two countries. It shows how an actual leader like President Trump can achieve real results in a short period of time.

“Not only are President Trump’s achievements being ignored by the Norwegian Nobel Committee, but these positive results are also being ignored by the American mainstream news media. While the summit with North Korea generated press headlines across the world, not surprisingly, in this country, the media focused on domestic politics.

Regarding Trump colluding with the Russians, Cohen admitted that he had no proof, although he had “suspicions.” Overall, this spectacle achieved its objective of inflicting political damage on President Trump and distracting the nation from the North Korean summit. In Cohen’s testimony, there were no damaging revelations, instead it was just another reminder that the Democrats and the media will stop at nothing to destroy their hated enemy, President Donald Trump.

Pelosi Spox: We Will Take All the Necessary Steps, Including Litigation to Get President Trump’s Tax Returns. Cristina Laila – “The Democrats have made it clear their only goal is to harass and obstruct President Trump.” … “Currently there is no law requiring a president or presidential candidate release their tax returns, but the Democrats don’t care about laws — they want to harass President Trump.

Do you suppose Congress could investigate how health insurance got so expensive? Jazz Shaw – “This is an untenable situation. Rather than “fixing” the health insurance system, the government broke it when they passed Obamacare and the only ones seeing any benefit are the insurance companies. Granted, the very poorest Americans living below the poverty level have been able to get government-subsidized plans that are dirt cheap, but that’s a tiny slice of the population and everyone else is getting hammered to keep this boondoggle afloat. The situation is clearly fixable, but not if Congress sits on its collective hands.” Remember John McCain’s vote to put it to Trump and defeat overturning Obamacare? See the Chief Justice peering out from behind the curtain?

Energy Secretary Rick Perry chides Sisolak for boycotting events Debra J. Saunders – “The rift between Carson City and the Trump administration widened Friday after Energy Secretary Rick Perry responded to Gov. Steve Sisolak’s request for a meeting with the president – with pointed prodding at the Democratic governor for boycotting two White House events while he was in town.” Democrats have taken over Nevada. This is just what they do. The priority is beating the political opposition, not responsible governance.

No, Sex Wasn’t Better for Women Under Socialism. Cathy Young – “It’s hard to get in the mood when you’re sharing a bedroom with your mother-in-law.”

“As someone who lived in the Soviet Union until emigrating as a teen in 1980, I can say that Ghodsee must have a truly impressive pair of rose-colored glasses.

The main lesson of this volume seems to be that many left-wing critics of capitalism can’t bring themselves to fully repudiate the legacy of 20th century Marxism-Leninism. Ghodsee concludes by claiming there “was a baby in all that bathwater.” Not in this book, there isn’t.

He Speaks Big Truth – “A Message for Hollywood” sundance – “At the end of all progressive leftism; when you carry out their policies to their logical conclusion; what we find is this massive wealth disparity between the haves and the have-nots.

“All you have to do is look back at the past thirty years for an example of what happens when government control, leftist policies, are carried out. The middle-class is wiped out; wages stagnate or decrease; the wealth gap keeps increasing; crony-government benefits those with the largest financial influence over political policy.

The factual counter to this decades-long corrupt process is represented within the middle-class policies of President Donald Trump.

Yes, Trump is the anti-elite; not necessarily in persona (he is that also) but in actual outcome of policy. Notice how right now working-class wages are rising. Notice how the value of work is now increasing… and, more importantly, notice how the ‘wealth gap’ in the past two years is actually closing.

President Trump doesn’t achieve this by redistributing a limited amount of American economic wealth; he achieves these results by creating even more economic pies. Trump’s economic policies actually increase all American wealth. The American middle-class becomes more valuable…. 600,000 high-wage manufacturing jobs are created. The American worker becomes more valuable.

For the first time in many decades the chief executive of the United States walked into office concerned about the fiscal stability of the average American, without a single IOU on his Oval Office desk. For the first time ever, a titan of American Main Street is in the oval office.

Main Street is such an old fashioned idea.

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Rendezvous With Reality?

Where Is House Ethics Probe into Adam Schiff? Julie Kelly – “During his grudge-airing, redemption-seeking spectacle on Wednesday, Michael Cohen admitted he was in cahoots with Democratic lawmakers prior to giving his congressional testimony.

“It all amounted to the latest ethical misstep by the Democratic chairman of the House Intelligence Committee; unfortunately, none of Schiff’s bad behavior has caught the attention either of the media or congressional watchdogs. Unlike his predecessor, Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), who was subjected to a fruitless, eight-month House Ethics Committee investigation in 2017, Schiff continues to escape scrutiny for lying to Congress, misleading the public about imaginary crimes related to Russian collusion, and now, witness-tampering. …

We now know which one was overplaying his hand: Schiff. Two years later, despite Schiff’s repeated warnings, there is no solid evidence to substantiate his claims. …

But new evidence now contradicts much of what Schiff claimed in his counter-memo, including a crucial timeline of contacts between the Justice Department and dossier author Christopher Steele, yet he has not corrected the record. Schiff’s failure to correct this record amounts to lying to Congress—his counter-memo was addressed to all members of the House of Representatives—as well as misleading Americans since the memo is a public record. Further, it’s now evident that the Nunes memo is accurate and that Schiff engaged in a deceitful campaign against his colleague in order to discredit and derail a crucial congressional investigation. How was that not an attempt by Schiff to obstruct justice?

Predictable – Adam Schiff and Elijah Cummings Announce Next Set of Witnesses. sundance – “Obviously this approach is unprecedented. However, as with everything that has happened thus far, this level of resistance continues to raise political confrontation into uncharted territory.

“All of this is carefully designed. None of this is organic. All of the participants have networked contacts acting as intermediaries (like Lawfare) to provide arms-length plausible deniability to the larger political scheme. These plans and schemes are all professional Democrats spend time thinking and talking about. This is what they do. This is all they do. This is their purpose in life; nothing else matters. …

Fortunately there are signals beginning to surface that indicate at least some members of congress are aware of the insufferable scheme and beginning to get out in front of it.

Lynne Patton: “Michael Cohen turned on the President because Mueller threatened to throw his wife in jail for up to 30 years” sundance – “This is a rather stunning statement. However, it holds the elements of truth and explanation as to why the Special Counsel, Robert Mueller/Andrew Weissmann, would pass off their assembled Cohen prosecution to the Southern District of New York.

The Democrats Embrace Not Making Sense. Jonathan F. Keiler – “Nothing about the competing positions of Democratic candidates makes much sense — not just from a Republican or conservative perspective, but from a position of logic, consistency, and anything resembling sound judgment.

“Three contradictory and irreconcilable planks dominate Democrat politics today and nobody is trying to rationalize them — socialism, identity politics, and climate change.

Identity based favoritism and set-asides are not socialist, but rather much closer to fascism.

California’s Rendezvous With Reality. Victor Davis Hanson – “Californians also see their progressive, one-party state as a neo-socialist model for a nation moving hard to the left … But how long will they retain such confidence?”

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Culture war: many fronts assaulted with much vigor.

The Red Queen. Richard Fernandez – “If the 20th century can be described as the age of materialism and conflict, the 21st may be known as the age of information; the time we discovered angels and demons are real. Madness too can become incarnate and do stuff.

“One of the vulnerabilities cited by the BBC study on civilizational collapse is today we are part of a “tightly coupled globalized system”. Unlike eras when mistakes and their consequences could be localized today a major error can affect everybody. The flip side of the claim that a Green New Deal can “save the world” is it can also destroy it.

One of the characteristics of comprehensive ideologies, as illustrated by the Green New Deal, is that because of their reductionist and global character they handle complexity with chunky policy interventions. This tends to increase the probability of “normal accidents” because the bureaucracy cannot manage the complex systems they feel compelled to control.

Nature attacks and defends on many fronts. But a giant ideological bureaucracy can do what Darwin can’t: embark on a single strategy to the exclusion of all else.

Lessons from Our Family’s Recent Identity Theft Mess. District 48 – “The problem with government (and all dysfunctional organizations, public and private) is not that they hire bad people, but they hire good people that they cause to act badly through poor information and incentives.” Police had no interest but his mail carrier “bent over backwards to help us out.” The perp was caught standing in a USPS line.

Harry Reid on Trump: ‘I just have trouble accepting him as a person’. J. Marsolo – “Speaking for the deranged Trump-haters, Harry doesn’t see Trump as a person, so everything Trump does is bad.” Trump’s smack down tweet clarifies the situation. Reid is an embarrassment, especially to Nevada.

Stunning – 44 Democrats Vote to Support Post Birth Abortion. sundance – “Three democrat Senators voted to support the bill [Casey (PA), Manchin (WVA), and Jones (AL)], all others voted against protecting the babies.” The Trump Response Tweet: “This will be remembered as one of the most shocking votes in the history of Congress. If there is one thing we should all agree on, it’s protecting the lives of innocent babies.Ace of Spades notesThree Senators — Tim Scott of South Carolina, Kevin Cramer of North Dakota, and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska all chose to not be present for the vote.

Chase Bank Now Routinely Closing the Personal Bank Accounts of Conservatives. Ace of Spades – “Part of the problem is that the left has made it its top priority to infiltrate/pressure corporations to advance the left’s goals — including the goal, now, of complete censorship and discrimination against conservatives.

About half of New Mexico counties are now gun rights sanctuaries. Jazz Shaw – “That’s not how things are supposed to work, of course. There’s the whole supremacy issue to deal with for starters. But if the Democrats passing these new gun control laws want to be upset about it, they’re going to have to explain why it’s okay for states and cities to defy federal immigration laws for sanctuary cities and states. If you’re going to pick and choose which laws you will or won’t respect, don’t act surprised when someone else does the same thing.

From Victor Davis Hanson regarding media malpractice in editing a conversation he had – “This is exactly why many people today have distrust of many in media and reflect upon the unprofessionalism that occurs too often.”

Microsoft’s Moral Abdication. Kevin Jon Heller – “This is a remarkable abdication of Microsoft’s responsibility for considering how its technology could be used — or misused.” Heller thinks that creating anything to help defend ourselves is terrible because somebody might abuse it. Take that bit of logic to even modest implications and it is clear that Heller is advocating suicide by passivity. Consider rocks in this light. Does Heller condemn making rocks because they might be used by armies in slings to protect their societies? (What happened to David and Goliath?)

“To be absolutely clear, I am not comparing IVAS to the atomic bomb. Microsoft is not the Manhattan Project. The underlying principle, however, is the same: it is not acceptable for scientists to blind themselves to the consequences of their actions.

This requires predicting the future, making unreasonable assumptions, and ignoring history. Trying to shift blame for misery from human nature to scientific creativity shows a severe lack of honesty and intellectual integrity. That shows in the absolute claims used in expressing judgment. Bringing in the Manhattan project regrets is another tell. That is a very clear story in selective history and the ignorance of tragedy reduction. The underlying fears driving that regret, about nuclear science and not weapons, are still costing human misery and suffering as outcomes of a non-polluting energy source being absent from the Green New Deal, for instance.

The culture war is one of survival. Legalizing infanticide explicitly post birth is one. Criminalizing self defense either personal or national, is another.

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Does the distinction matter? What planet you on?

Leftists and reality. neo – “It may be a distinction that doesn’t matter all that much except in psychological terms, but the difference is whether the person is consciously lying or whether the person believes what he or she is saying.” This is another one noticing the behavior. Perhaps the APA should start working on this rather than toxic masculinity? The case in point is illustrated by a passage from Nineteen Eighty-Four.

Yes, ‘This Is America, 2019’. Victor Davis Hanson – “There have been so far about three general reactions to the concocted Jussie Smollett psychodrama.” Catalog, analyze, dissect, you know – those things scholars are supposed to do with interesting or unusual phenomena.

“Smollett has shown that the most absurd narratives imaginable will continue to gain credence because they fill a deep psychological, cultural—and, yes, careerist—need for millions in the country to believe that hate crimes are epidemic, that they are the currency of the Right, and that they can only be addressed by more government scrutiny of a particular class of victimizers such as the Duke Lacrosse team, the Covington kids, or Smollett’s mythic red-hatted Trump racists.

His farce is yet another example that it is now largely permissible to slur and smear millions of purported Trump supporters, as either defined by their stereotyped race and gender or their red hats (with or without a logo).

To paraphrase CNN anchorwoman Brooke Baldwin, who in careerist fashion immediately sought to gin up popular outrage over the Smollett “hate crime” attack: “This is America, 2019.”

Baldwin is right in her inference that we really are suffering from a national illness—and her own fact-free, careerist-driven editorializing and others like it are the proof.

Now Ol’ Miss Basketball has a black privilege team biting the hand that feeds story. It’d be one thing if there was a reality supporting their acting out but an overwrought sensitivity to trolling is rather odd to find in highly competitive sports.

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Yet here we are. Surber, Feldman, sundance, McCotter, Knighton explain

Now do you see Trump won the shutdown? Don Surber – “Two months and a day after the shutdown began, President Trump is in the driver’s seat.

“First, “Trump is getting the wall.”

Second, “No, Trump did not cave.”

Third, “Trump wins because he isn’t screwing anyone over.”

When the shutdown battle began, I wrote that President Trump had won because Donald Trump wins the battle first, then goes to war. It’s Sun Tzu.

It’s the third item in the list that is perhaps most important. His opposition is all about what they can do to destroy people. Trump is about M.A.G.A.

High Ties and Misdemeanors. Clarice Feldman – “Nothing offends people more than unequal justice — disparate treatment of protected persons and classes. This week, the FBI and Department of Justice’s hash of equal justice became even clearer and the media’s fat thumb on the scales as well.” Unequal justice is about “screwing anyone over.”

“I believe the concept of “hate crimes” is an oxymoron. If you assault or murder someone it’s fair to assume it was out of improper animus. Adding a kicker for “hate” in which attacks on certain classes of people result in enhanced sentences strikes me as an improper “thought crime” punishment, inconsistent with constitutional law.

In any event, the laws on hate crimes seem to be as selectively enforced as the crimes of mishandling and leaking classified material and attempting to overthrow the president. Here too the press plays an important part, demonizing the President’s supporters, and downplaying or not reporting hate crimes against them while regularly magnifying defamatory and false accusations against them.

AP Previews Andrew Weissmann’s Special Counsel Report as Pitched by Pelosi Committee Chairs.  sundance – “Many people are wondering what type of report Andrew Weissmann could possibly write for his special counsel boss Robert Mueller – to present to the DOJ after two years of insufferable political investigations.

“the Associated Press has provided an answer that likely hits as close to accurate as anyone could presume.

In their anticipatory outline the AP reporters take half-truths, blend them with innuendo and leap-jumping suspicion, and top it all off with manipulated narrative engineering.

An American Epidemic: Toxic Imbecility. Thaddeus G. McCotter – President Abraham Lincoln ominously noted, “America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.”

“What is this postmodern plague consuming our nation?

Toxic imbecility.

And where is the hot zone where this imbecilic chicken first came home to roost and now appears ready to cook our goose?

symptoms of toxic imbecility include but are certainly not limited to the following:

Tragically, the symptoms of #ToxicImbecility appear to be endless. Fortunately, the vaccine, for those not yet infected, and the antidote, for those now suffering the scourge, is relatively succinct; readily available and, thanks to the internet, largely free: read liberal doses of Edmund Burke, Russell Kirk, William F. Buckley, Jr. and Victor Davis Hanson; escape your safe space; and embrace reality. Yes, it’s that simple.

Case study: 11-Year-Old Docked Points for Not Bashing Trump. Tom Knighton – “To say that some people dislike Donald Trump may well be the understatement of the year. It’s hard to imagine any duly elected president seeing so many protests, yet here we are.

“manipulated narrative engineering” sounds like a new course for the universities. It’s what Pravda was known for but called propaganda back then.

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The real scandal is a pile under the rug that is becoming hard to ignore

Schiffting to Phase 2 of Collusion (WSJ via Outline). Kimberley A. Strassel – “There’s been no more reliable regurgitator of fantastical Trump-Russia collusion theories than Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff.

“when the House Intelligence Committee chairman sits down to describe a “new phase” of the Trump investigation, pay attention. These are the fever swamps into which we will descend after Robert Mueller’s probe.

Mr. Schiff has now dictated to Mr. Ignatius a whole new collusion theory. Forget Carter Page, Paul Manafort, George Papadopoulos—whoever. The real Trump-Russia canoodling rests in “Trump’s finances.” The future president was “doing business with Russia” and “seeking Kremlin help.”

So, no apologies. No acknowledgment that Mr. Schiff & Co. for years have pushed fake stories that accused innocent men and women of being Russian agents. No relieved hope that the country might finally put this behind us. Just a smooth transition—using Russia as a hook—into Mr. Trump’s finances. Mueller who?

What’s mind-boggling is that reporters would continue to take Mr. Schiff seriously, given his extraordinary record of incorrect and misleading pronouncements.

At the start of all the Russia craziness, Mr. Schiff had a choice: maintain the bipartisan integrity of his committee by working with Republicans to find honest answers, or take on the role of resident conspiracy theorist. He chose his path. The rest of us should know better than to follow him.

Real Scandal Of Trump Term Starts To Unravel. Conrad Black – 

“The most immense and dangerous public scandal in American history is finally cracking open like a ripe pomegranate. The broad swath of the Trump-hating press that has participated in what has amounted to an unconstitutional attempt to overthrow the government are reduced to reporting the events and revelations of the scandal in which they have been complicit, in a po-faced ho-hum manner to impart to the misinformed public that this is as routine as stock market fluctuations or the burning of an American flag in Tehran.

The authors, accomplices, and dupes of this attempted overthrow of constitutional government are now well along in reciting their misconduct without embarrassment or remorse …

Large sections of the press colluded with the Democratic campaign and produced the doctrine that anything was justifiable, no matter how dishonest, to destroy the incoming president’s reputation and damage him in public opinion polls to legitimize attempts to remove him from office.

The disgrace of their misconduct is profound and shocking.

Bernie blows his big chance to explain socialism in Venezuela. Monica Showalter – “Bernie Sanders, 77, who’s been defending socialist Venezuela for years, and who’d now like to be our president, has some explaining to do.” The real value of this article is that Showalter does some explaining. Find out what happened to get a better understanding of what socialism really is and why it wreaks havoc on societies.

ISIS bride’s father sues Trump administration to restore terrorist’s passport. Ed Morrissey – this is another Obama mess being remodeled by media interior decorating to make it seem to fit the desired narrative.

Über-IPCC chairman Will Happer may need good bodyguards. Luboš Motl – “Trump has ignored the Paris treaty and similar things but I have felt uneasy because he left the underlying cause of such irrational campaigns, the politicization of science, untouched. … Some good news may change it.

Changing Reality With Words. Victor Davis Hanson – “Suddenly, blizzards, deluges and subzero temperatures meant that typically unpredictable weather was “haywire” because of affluent Westernized lifestyles.” … “Beware of euphemisms. Radical changes in vocabulary are usually admissions that reality is unwelcome or indefensible.

White nationalist arrested on weapons charges. neo – “It all comes down to an old question: how much risk are we willing to accept in order to retain our liberty? We don’t want to be prosecuting thoughtcrime—at least, most of us on the right don’t.” It’s beginning to look like fantasizing in your personal, private diary can be fruit for prosecution if it fits political narrative fantasies. To see the spin rationalizing thoughtcrimes, see WaPo.

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Nihilism. Simple Fairness Demands?

Andrew McCabe is the new Joe McCarthy. Charles Lipson – “Serious charges need serious proof. Simple fairness demands it. But McCabe presents none.”

Lemon: The worst part about Smollett hoax will be all the conservative pouncing, you know. Ed Morrissey – “I … don’t think that’s Jussie Smollett’s biggest problem right now, even if it might be Don Lemon’s.”

“ Smollett’s problem appears to be that he set up a hoax, and got suckers like Lemon to bite all the way to the bone on it. That’s not his “representatives’” fault, whatever Lemon means by that. Smollett has bigger losses in front of him right now than any in the court of public opinion. You don’t hire Mark Geragos in order to wage a PR campaign.

Sorry. Mr. Lemon. The media earned every bit of ridicule and criticism it earned by going all-in on Smollett’s weird claim from the get-go. They earned every bit of criticism for doing the same thing with the Covington Catholic High School kids for the same purpose — to pounce, if you will, all over conservatives, pro-lifers, and anyone who might have a little sympathy for Donald Trump.

At least in some corners of the industry, they haven’t learned a damn thing from either failure. Expect more to come.

This might be related to an AP story about a Coast Guard officer accused of plotting to kill Democrats, journalists (Politico). It’s nice to have a wacked out white supremacist domestic terrorist with a Coast Guard seasoning tossed into the news to provide a distraction and restore the narrative. “The initial charges against Hasson are relatively uncommon, and appear to illustrate the challenges investigators face in charging individuals who may pose an imminent danger but where evidence of actionable threats against specific people is weak.

The Greatest Scandal In the History of Science. John Hinderaker – “I have written many times about the unwarranted “adjustments” to measured past temperatures by government agencies, which serve to inflate the modest warming that has occurred in recent decades.

The New Nihilism. Victor Davis Hanson – “the answer to Trump is neither liberal nor progressive, but nihilistic. The logical extreme alone ensures revolutionary purity even as it would result in chaos and destruction.” … “In sum, the emerging alternative to Trump is not Democratic pragmatism, but an angry nihilism that is as incoherent as it is destructive.

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