Archive for science

Demented?

Attacking Sully. James Aaron Brown – “Our high moral principles do not eschew science, mock dogs, or act unkindly.” … but that is what we get from folks such as Ruth Graham at Slate.

“Ruth felt her greatest contribution would be to point out Sully was simply an employee, and not a beloved family pet. Furthermore, she sought to do what many in her camp might do, impose a postmodern and deconstructionist interpretation upon a photo. She then imposes a false narrative of power struggle between a dominant master (who had Parkinson’s and needed a service dog to help him function throughout his day) on a helpless creature conscripted into training and forced to help 41. Her rationale? This is what Sully was trained to do as an employee.

Why was Sully lying in front of the casket of 41? According to Graham, “…it’s a bit demented to project soul-wrenching grief onto a dog’s decision to lie down in front of a casket.” Well, if we use science, then we will take stock of previous observations and compare similar accounts of dogs with funerals. We will then look at studies or seek out experts like Dr. Coren to see if there is any meaningful correlation. If we don’t apply our own confirmation bias, as it seems Graham did in her article, we will find that Sully is doing what many a child with the same cognitive abilities and what other dogs in Sully’s situation do.

If our society’s goal is to entertain ourselves with false criticism, Slate proves this point. However, I am convinced that deep down, the American people aspire to something greater

How Much Blood Would Leftists Be Willing To Shed To Disarm Patriotic Americans? Kurt Schlichter – “After all, it’s not as if you Democrats don’t already have a history of killing people for having guns you disapprove of.”

“So, in light of his party’s track record, I want to know how many people Rep. Swalwell – who fancies himself a potent Democrat presidential contender – is prepared to see die so he can ensure Americans are disarmed in order to please the liberal Californians he represents. How many?

Spielberg warns of the danger of ‘collective hate’. John Sexton – “I point all of that out not to diminish the real threat to Jewish people, which clearly does exist, but to point out that the cause of the current rise in anti-Semitic attacks may be more complicated than some of the simplistic analysis being offered in the national media.”

VDH takes on an “angry reader” as usual by using the criticism to illustrate reality. “Not admitting such an obvious truth is both intellectually dishonest and privileges ideology over empiricism. The anonymous author’s case is not helped by puerile ranting like the following: But Hansen (sic) will never point the finger at his Republican friends, it’s always, liberals, environmentalists, etc..

“No one is calling for mass strip logging or vast controlled burns and unlimited grazing, but rather for a balanced approach of greater harvesting, managed preventative burns, closer cooperation with grazing and timber interests, and greater worry given to human safety and security—which is tragically not state or federal policy in California.

The war on standards: fare-jumping edition. Paul Mirengoff – “Fare-jumping is, of course, a form of theft. And not an innocuous form. The local transit authority loses more than $25 million a year due to fare evasion.” Let the rationalizing begin.

“Reducing the penalty to a $50 fine with no possibility of arrest and/or fail time will mean even more lost revenue. The fine is light and unlikely to be collected in many cases. Jack Evans, chairman of the transit authority and one of the two city counsel members to vote against decriminalization, points out that unlike with parking tickets, where the city can block vehicle registration for unpaid citations, there is no good mechanism for mandating payment of a civil citation for fare-jumping.

What, then, is the argument for going so lightly on fare-jumpers? It’s a familiar one: Blacks disproportionately refuse to comply with the requirement of paying their fare.

It’s sad that African-Americans make up such a large percentage of scofflaws in Washington D.C. However, it’s difficult to see why this fact justifies going soft on fare-jumping to the detriment of the financial viability of public transportation.

In addition to the concrete costs the new law will inflict on the transit system, and ultimately its riders, the legislation is insidious. Lowering standard and, in effect, laughing off what has always been deemed criminal behavior (in this case, outright theft) simply because one segment of the population refuses to comply is a recipe for societal decline.

At the low end of criminality spectrum, fare-jumping will now effectively be excused, at least in D.C. At the high end, there is a bipartisan push to grant significant leniency to major drug dealers, with racial disproportionality a major argument advanced in favor of this move.

What other crimes will we be asked to shrug our shoulders at, or go much easier on, in the name of racial equity?

It’s spin to call 1850-1900 “pre-industrial era”. Luboš Motl – “The climate hysteria has faded away but some people keep on doing their propaganda work as if it were 2007.”

“All these examples, the definition or the very existence of seasons, the definition of the pre-industrial era, or the main function of time to describe the global climate, show that the political goals have become more important than the scientific truth in this discipline. Most of the people who were hired to this discipline since 1988 or so became (or have always been) fraudsters and demagogues who are spinning and fabricating the facts, terminology, and emphases in order to strengthen the case for a predetermined political goal. This is not science.

Demented?

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Strike out. Doesn’t seem to matter. Yet?

Return to civility means surrender to the Democrats and media. J. Marsolo – “President Bush was a gentleman, a war hero, and courteous and civil to his political opponents. But his opponents, Dems and the media, were not civil to him, nor were they civil in their opposition to Bush’s policies and nominees.”

“In sum, Trump is not “civil” because he replies to his opponents who viciously attack him. Bush was civil because he raised taxes, attacked the NRA, and did not reply to those who attacked him. The Dems and the media want to return to the “civility” where the Dems and media attack and destroy, and Trump does not respond to the attacks. The Dems and the media are not used to a Republican who fights back when attacked.

Trump fights back, while the “civil” Republicans lay down and took the abuse like good sports. How dare Trump be anything but civil?

Ace of Spades uses a Jonah Goldberg example to illustrate why people like Glenn Reynolds avoid Twitter. Screaming Fake News™ then whispering corrections …

“It’s not good for society when two camps have contradictory beliefs about the basic facts they build their worldviews on — and those who do this deliberately, or who are churlish and grudging about correcting LIES they pumped out to the world (albeit unwillingly) are adding to the strife and division they write one column every two weeks decrying.

It would be good if we could all agree on the facts, wouldn’t it?

The war on standards, STEM edition. Paul Mirengoff – “Underlying this nonsense is the dogmatic assumption that, but for systemic discrimination and “microaggressions,” female representation in STEM would equal male representation.”

 

“Heather Mac Donald has written and spoken extensively about how identity politics is hampering America’s ability to maintain its dominance in STEM fields. Our main competitors, most notably China, are focused on making sure the best scientists, mathematicians, and engineers are doing the work. They care nothing about gender. And they spend virtually every dollar related to STEM on hard research and analysis.

The U.S., by contrast, is preoccupied with the gender and (to a lesser extent) the race and ethnicity of who is in the lab. And we pour money into promoting identity politics in STEM.
… 
Somehow, one doubts that China is indulging in these self-defeating shenanigans.

Ninth Circuit fully beclowns itself on illegal immigration. Jazz Shaw – “despite being smacked down by the Supreme Court on review, the judges on Tuesday went one step further and began striking down (or at least weakening) federal immigration law.”

 

“Tashima, who was originally nominated as a District Court judge by Jimmy Carter and later elevated to the Ninth Circuit by Bill Clinton, seems to be taking an overly broad view of the free speech issue. Certainly, the First Amendment protects even the most unpopular speech and opinions, but it’s long been established that there are limits to that right.

What’s under discussion here is not an airing of opinions or debate of an issue. It’s an example of incitement to engage in criminal behavior. We already have similar laws on the books and have for ages. Laws covering Incitement to Riot (under Title 18) draw clear distinctions between “urging or instigating other persons” (which is illegal) and “advocacy of ideas or expressions of belief, not involving advocacy of any act” (which is not illegal).

WaPo: Four Pinocchios to kickstart AOC’s Congressional career. Ed Morrissey gets in a ‘both sides do it’ dig here that contradicts itself. That is a form of rationalizing a deceit that is, perhaps, at the foundation of the point he is making. When it comes to the Left, incidents and facts of significance are cited as examples. When it comes to Trump (notable selection bias indication on this), it is just vague allegation.

“However, this episode demonstrates an uncomfortable fact of public life that has been expanding for quite a long time. At least politically, we have moved into a post-fact world. Some will point to Donald Trump as the main driver, and while he’s certainly a contributor, he’s hardly the starting point. Perhaps it began with Vietnam or Watergate; possibly one could point to Iran-Contra and have some justification. What seems undeniable is that we had begun moving in that direction by the time Monica’s blue dress emerged and suddenly presidential perjury was deemed not a big deal, and we had fully embraced it by the time we heard that a video was the cause of our woefully undersecured and abandoned consulate in Benghazi being sacked. Hillary Clinton ran just as shamelessly as Trump did in 2016, refusing to tell the truth about her own abuses of power.

Ocasio-Cortez will keep fact-checkers busy with her ignorance on math, budgets, and policy, but she won’t be the only one. We’ve incentivized shameless prevarication, and the only ones who will benefit from it are the demagogues and the fact-checkers who may or may not bother to unwind their lies. Kudos to Rizzo for aggressively checking Ocasio-Cortez in this instance, but until we care about honesty in political debate, we’re gonna send a lot more Ocasio-Cortezes his way while they talk us into disastrous policies — like Medicare for All.

On this, consider a VDH ‘angry reader’ response. The claim is the narrative “Since you never state that POTUS lies 80-85% of the time when he speaks publicly, what are some examples of his fake news.” VDH notes the ad hominem and lack of specificity in the claim and suggests “why not just focus on one network, CNN, and consider just a few of their more recent transgressions?

The headlines today are about Michael Flynn. See From fishy beginning, Mueller case against Michael Flynn nears end with no jail recommendation. Byron York – “What the sentencing recommendation did not address was the sketchy beginnings of the Flynn investigation.”

“Hill Republicans have been suspicious about the the Flynn case for quite a while. But they have not been able to get their hands on some key documents and testimony that might tell them what happened.

House investigators have a chance to learn more this week when, on Friday, Comey appears for a behind-closed-doors interview with members of the Judiciary and Oversight committees.

One-Eyed-Jack Law. Victor Davis Hanson – “Criminals and partisans, accusing others of criminality and partisanship.” Here’s a catalog to peruse …

“Mueller cannot fulfill the hype of the past 18 months, which forecast that the “all-stars,” the “dream-team,” and the Mueller “army” would make short work of the supposedly buffoonish Trump by proving that he colluded with Russia to swing an election. Collusion, remember, was hyped as doing what the Logan Act, the emoluments clause, the 25th Amendment, impeachment, media frenzy, and assassination-chic rhetoric had not.

By indicting a number of minor characters on charges that so far have nothing to do with collusion — for purported crimes mostly committed after the special-counsel appointment — Mueller has emphasized the quantity rather than the quality of indictments.

Mueller has already weaponized politics, making a crime out of the tawdry business of opposition research — but only sort of, since his interests in doing so are highly selective. And so his chief legacy will have little to do with whatever he finds on Donald Trump. He has already established the precedent that there is now no real equality under the law, at least as Americans once understood fair play and blind justice.

Such skullduggery poses the question of whether Mueller’s investigation has been simply derailed by partisanship. Or has it effectively served as a deliberate distraction from the felonious behavior of dozens of Obama-administration and Clinton-campaign officials — all determined to ensure, by any means necessary, that Trump would never be president?

Scott Johnson says Analyze this – “In my contrarian “Notes on the Cohen plea,” I made these points among others: … Now what? Probably nothing. I do not pretend to know. The truth of the matter nevertheless has its own continuing claim on our attention.”

Another take: Mueller strikes out trying to nail Trump – Flynn sentencing memo is a big nothing. Gregg Jarrett – “The memo isn’t a “smoking gun” showing President Trump colluded with Russians to win the 2016 presidential election or did anything else illegal.”

“Flynn should never have been prosecuted. The FBI agents who interviewed him concluded that he was telling the truth. This was confirmed by both former FBI Director James Comey and his deputy, Andrew McCabe, when they testified before congressional investigators. Had Mueller been forced to prove his case in court, he would have lost.

The law requires that a false statement be made “willfully and knowingly” (18 U.S.C. 1001). If Flynn’s recollection of the conversation with Russian Ambassador Kislyak is inconsistent with a transcript of their conversation, secretly recorded, it is not a crime. If Flynn interpreted his discussion differently than the FBI, it is also not a crime.

Flynn pleaded guilty not because he lied, but because Mueller crushed him financially and threatened to take legal action against the retired Army general’s son.

Flynn’s decision was understandable. Mueller’s actions were, and are, unconscionable and wrong.

Bureaucrats have the power to turn a tiny glitch into an insurmountable hurdle. Luboš Motl – “As you know, I hate bureaucracy – and some very real and viscerally unpleasant experience with bureaucratic operations is a substantial part of my opposition to the ideals of the Big Government, or almost any government or a left-wing social construct, for that matter.” A tale of woe, an example, and a warning…

“Now, the whole system is corrupt – too many pensioners want their pensions to go up and they will support any liar, perhaps any murderer or any kind of scum, as long as it will increase their expectation value of their pension. What are the prospects of a nation where democracy turns into this corruption where liars increasingly steal the money from the productive part of the nation and they are defending of their increasingly self-evident lies? As Benjamin Franklin said, once the people find out they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic. And we are seeing it in Czechia. When “democracy” wins over some totally self-evident and demonstrable facts and truths, it’s too bad.

The Coyote has found a take on the Russian Collusion, from TA Frank at Vanity Fair, “that seems to almost perfectly capture my current take on the whole affair.” It is honest in that it accepts the lack of supporting evidence. It suffers otherwise. Note the vague allegations that tend towards ad hominem (“Certainly, Trump’s ethical standards are low”) and judgmental rather than opinion. The definition of sleaze is also interesting. Then there is the attempt to minimize the Clinton impeachment as simple, justifiable perjury rather than perjury about domestic violence and abuse of intern relationships. That leads to excusing what the assault on Trump is doing in regards to relationships and dealing with Russia, a matter that has very serious implications. Indeed, Frank seems to think all is peachy keen with Russia despite goings-on in places like the Ukraine or the missile treaty or other expressions of Russian aggression.

 

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Conspiracy needs exceptional support. Is it there?

A Picture Is Worth More Than A Thousand Words To The Trained Eye. Jamie Wells, M.D – “Omission in itself, intentional or not, foments an inaccurate to more demonstrably false narrative depending on the degree.”

“With the rapid pace of technology spreading a word or image globally in a matter of seconds, the old saying “a lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on” is ever the more relevant today. We are a quick assumption first, deal with the collateral damage of corrective action later culture. And it is to our detriment. This manifests in little to big ways.

there are many ways to respect individual privacy and a person’s autonomy to disclose as much or as little as they desire and clarify inconsistent and erroneous messages that get spread as a result. But, the most important method of achieving this often delicate dance is urging the reintroduction into our culture of critical thinking and reasoning. Accepting what is shown as is with spoon-fed consumption does not make for an informed participant in society.

What’s the lesson? Because many sayings are timeless for a reason, when it comes to being intellectually honest and learning “the devil is in the details.”

The Scientifically Ignorant Drive GMO Debate. Alex Berezow – “There’s no nice way to put this. The scientifically ignorant are driving society’s science debates.”

“A few years ago, I reported on a study that found that people who were uninterested in science were the ones who were most fearful of it. I wrote that they “believe that science causes more problems than it solves, believe that humans should not tamper with nature, [and] feel that technology advances too quickly for them to understand.”

That paper’s finding was in complete agreement with the results of the new Pew study. And it adds to the growing narrative that one of the biggest threats to science comes from a society that remains willfully ignorant about it. How can we educate people about science if they don’t want to be educated?

Even worse, there are plenty of people who are willing to make a quick buck by cashing in on the public’s ignorance. …

It’s simply a truth of human nature that we are far more motivated by fear than by gratitude. That’s why political campaigns are almost universally about how horrible the other candidate is. It’s much easier to get a person to vote against someone (out of fear) rather than for someone (out of gratitude).

The bottom line, then, is that science debates are actually a struggle against human nature. And that is one tough thing to overcome, but it can be done.

The gender wage gap. Neo – “A new study underlines what many of us already knew.”

“It is very similar to the old “equality of opportunity” (the conservative point of view, although it was once also the liberal point of view) versus “equality of outcome” (the current leftist/liberal point of view, because leftist and liberal have increasingly fused).

The American public has been slowly, and then recently more quickly, moving to the latter goal from the former one: outcome vs. mere opportunity. How did this happen? …

It also helps that most people do not understand research and statistics. … since the basics also seem to be beyond the grasp of many people, most people are going to rely on interpreters of research—for example, articles in the MSM—to elucidate matters. And since the MSM has its own agenda, and that agenda is political rather than an objective reporting on the facts, way too many readers are going to assume that the MSM’s summary of the meaning of a research finding is reliable.

In other words, propaganda works, and the less a person knows about the actual subject matter, the more likely the propaganda will work for that person

The Best Argument Yet for Keeping the Caravan Out. Pedro Gonzalez – “Love, like hate, can blind us from seeing things as they really are. America is in a toxic relationship with immigration, and like a battered spouse, progressives keep crawling back to the same tropes and lies.”

Does ‘Make X Great Again’ Ever Happen in History? Victor Davis Hanson – “it is a scary idea that the fate of making America great again might hinge on the nihilism of the Democratic Party.”

Expert thinks Trump was set up. Don Surber – “At least six people with long-established ties to the FBI or to U.S. and Western intelligence made entrees to key figures in the Trump business organization or his presidential campaign between March and October 2016,” Solomon wrote.

Notes on the Cohen plea (2). Scott Johnson – “Sources tell Sperry that Mueller apparently withheld exculpatory evidence in the Criminal Information he filed last week against Cohen for lying about the duration of talks about a never-realized Moscow Trump Tower.” … “I would add, however, that I am quite sure it will not look anything like exoneration in Mueller’s report.”

Senator Mark Warner: The SSCI is “Working Closely” With Robert Mueller. sundance – “This is not me just haphazardly making a theory of how a corrupt Senate Committee and a corrupt Special Counsel working in concert with each other with mutual interests. This stuff is in our faces. All of the data-points involving the SSCI go in one direction…. toward corruption. There is not a single data-point going in the other direction.”

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imaginary hobgoblins, foreboding

New U.S. Climate Report a ‘Scientific Embarrassment’. Tom Harris And Dr. Madhav Khandekar – “The 1,656-page NCA report, produced by a team from thirteen federal agencies, is riddled with imaginary hobgoblins. Especially mistaken is the NCA’s repeated reference to increased warming and extreme weather events, both in the recent past and in the future.” The real question is why there is such mass delusion despite overwhelming evidence.

Nir Shaviv in Bundestag. Luboš Motl – “Gene has informed me that the Israeli astrophysicist, climate skeptic, and TRF guest blogger Nir Shaviv gave a testimony in the German Parliament, the greenest Parliament of any country in the world, on Wednesday.” It’s another example to the effect climate alarmism has on stimulating questionable behavior, especially in reactions against those who try to expose fantasy to reality.

Blackouts, deaths and civil unrest: warning over Scotland’s rush to go green. From The Herald Scotland, Sandra Dick – “A massive gap in the electricity system caused by the closure of coal-fired power stations and growth of unpredictable renewable generation has created the real prospect of complete power failure.” Read the full story here.

William Safire on Bungling Bob Mueller. Don Surber – “Safire pointed out that their excuse to seize power was to stop another 9/11.” … “Thus we see the seizure of new powers of surveillance is a smokescreen to hide failure to use the old power.”

“Safire saw the federal government for what it is: a bunch of blowhards covering their backsides. He also laid into John Ashcroft, the attorney general who proved conservatives are just as inept as liberals.

Fishing expeditions are Mueller’s specialty.

“This is not some nightmare of what may happen someday. It happened last week. Jim Sensenbrenner, chairman of House Judiciary, said the removal of restraints made him ‘queasy;’ Pat Leahy of Senate Judiciary is too busy blocking judges to object. Some sunshine libertarians are willing to suffer this loss of personal freedom in the hope that the Ashcroft-Mueller rules of intrusion may prevent a terror attack. They won’t because they’re a fraud.”

Remember Prague? In Michael Cohen plea deal, Mueller says nothing about key collusion allegation. Byron York – “the chattering class instantly began talking about the failed Trump Tower Moscow project.”

“it turns out the Cohen plea agreement also made news in what it did not cover. Specifically, it spoke volumes — without saying a word — about a key allegation of the Trump dossier, the charge that Cohen traveled to Prague to arrange secret payments to Russian hackers attacking the Clinton campaign. The accusation is the heart of the collusion allegation, and Trump-Russia special counsel Robert Mueller’s deal with Cohen strongly suggests that prosecutors have not found evidence to support it.

For more than a year, a number of Trump-Russia investigators on Capitol Hill have maintained that none of the dossier’s substantive allegations are true. The new plea deal between Cohen and Mueller is more evidence to support that.

But evidence doesn’t seem to matter to many. They’ ll make it up if they need to to keep their narrative going.

Foreboding – FBI Raids Home of Clinton Foundation Whistleblower. Sundance – “Make sure you read the entire [Daily Caller] article because if the DOJ was intending to throw a bag over the entire Clinton Foundation investigation and cover-it-up, that raid is exactly what they would do.”

“If the reporting of the raid by the Daily Caller is accurate; and given the nature of the timing for that raid; and accepting the at risk elements within the whistleblower case extended beyond Hillary Clinton to Robert Mueller; and noting how the SSCI was the recipient of the information/evidence as transmitted by Michael Horowitz; there is a solid appearance of the DOJ maneuvering to cover-up the underlying DOJ/FBI corruption by seizing -and controlling- all of the evidence.

How is this level of blatant disregard possible? Seriously, I really don’t know

It would appear there is no limit to what the corrupt Deep State officials will do to hide their unlawful activity; and apparently there’s not an honest person amid the organizations who can stop them. FUBAR. Very disturbing.

I hope I’m wrong.

Maybe there’s a valid reason for this FBI raid; if so, I can’t think of one.

Thomas Sowell – “Much of the social history of the Western world over the past three decades has involved replacing what worked with what sounded good.”

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History speaks

Why this new meme on social media is not just wrong, but belittling. Donna Laframboise – “There is now a long history of environmental doom mongering, of dire predictions pre-dating even the 1960s and 1970s, that have *always* failed to materialize. From that perspective, climate skeptics know their history & have learned from it.”

“How many failed predictions of eco-apocalypse are necessary before those who approach climate change with healthy skepticism are no longer dismissed as morons?

Belittling people, distorting their position so that they look stupid, gets us nowhere. It doesn’t change anyone’s mind. It doesn’t promote mutual respect. Instead it wounds, it insults, it polarizes.

Failed Oregon Solar Equipment Plant Leaves Behind Millions in Taxpayer Losses. Bonner R. Cohen – “From The Heartland Institute November 26, 2018 By Bonner R. Cohen A multi-year effort by federal, state, and local agencies to prop up an Oregon solar-panel manufacturer has ended in a shuttered factory, millions of taxpayer dollars down the drain, and a heavily polluted manufacturing site. A multi-year effort by federal, state, and local agencies

‘Junk Science’ Is Everywhere, And The Media Eat It Up. Ashe Schow – “It’s become a profitable industry, where scheming researchers get taxpayer-funded grants to find specific conclusions, then those manipulated and fake conclusions are reported back to the public as if they are real, and then policies and recommendations are made that further cost people money.”

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Fighting the Fake. a Sisyphean task?

Global Warming: Fake Science Again Serves Far-Left Political Agenda. Investor’s Business Daily – “Time for mass panic? Nope. Just more fake science.” Yeh, but just try to tell that to the Vatican

 

“The new National Climate Assessment (NCA) report, the fourth since 2000, seems to suggest a coming climate disaster, to paraphrase the film comedy “Ghost Busters,” of “epic, even biblical proportions.” But its forecasts and models border on the absurd. At some point, the scientific malpractice in these global warming scare reports has to end.

“The Fourth National Climate Assessment offers no hard evidence, just vague assertions and claims that past climate change is no evidence about future climate change,” wrote Dr. Ken Haapala, president of the Science and Environmental Policy Project. “It earns the distinction that it does not meet the standards of the Information Quality Act, and each page should be stamped: ‘Based on speculation, not hard evidence.’ ”

As we said, at some point the scientific malpractice of these government exercises in global warming propaganda has to end. This isn’t fake news. It’s fake science, which is just as dangerous.

So don’t let these phony predictions of imminent climate doom made by government bureaucrats frighten you. Be angry instead.

 

Latest Global Warming Lies from US Global Change Research Program. Norman Rogers – “The many scientists that dispute this junk science are ruthlessly attacked and marginalized.” … “The brazenness of the fake science is often shocking.”

 

“Junk science and fake science are not limited to global warming. They are invading many important areas of science. For example, the danger of low level radiation has been exaggerated by persistent use of a model not supported by data. The supposed danger of PM2.5 or small particles, smaller than 2.5 microns, that are suspended in the air, has been exaggerated without good evidence. The danger of DDT was exaggerated with the result that millions of children were killed by malaria. In each case there are special interests that profit from spreading junk science. Stories predicting disaster sell and the science establishment is selling.

The corruption of science has its roots in the political funding of science by the federal government. Somehow we have to make it less profitable for scientists to make up science. Peer review is a joke and doesn’t work. Certainly it would help if the public and the media were skeptical about any scientific theory that predicts a disaster unless we do what the scientists and their allies want us to do.

 

Why climate litigation is out of place. Donald J. Kochan – “we should be sensible when deciding what branches of government should navigate the heated debate.”

 

“Nevertheless, a recent nationwide strategy has looked to unelected judges and juries to craft climate policy. What might be called “the judicial strategy” started in 2015, with states like New York and Massachusetts beginning “civil investigative demand” inquiries into energy companies. And these efforts reached new heights recently when Acting New York AG Barbara Underwood filed a civil suit against ExxonMobil claiming it defrauded shareholders by supposedly hiding knowledge of climate change impacts through accounting practices that are not all that unusual across myriad industries.

 

Sierra Club joins Big Wind Bullies at Apex, Diminishing our Environment. Mkbarton – “Never forget, it was a brave representative of the Los Angeles chapter of the Sierra Club, Bob Hattoy, who coined the term “the Cuisinarts of the air” in a late 1980s battle against a wind project in Gorman, California.”

 

“Today’s Sierra Club has strayed so far from Muir’s original mission of protecting life and our natural environment it is unbelievable. We are greatly saddened to see the Sierra Club (a group many of us used to support) now lobbying for the destruction of vast swaths of rural America with industrial wind sprawl, while also shamelessly advocating for abortion and other far-left ideologies that have nothing to do with protecting the environment.

 

Exposed: A Key Element of the Wind Energy Fraud. John Hinderaker – “When it comes to energy, you cannot get reliable information from “mainstream” sources or from the government. “Green” energy investors like Tom Steyer have gamed the system, and whoever pays electric bills–i.e., everyone else–is the sucker in their game.”

Andrea Mitchell of MSNBC wins the prize for the stupidest comment on the border assault. Thomas Lifson – “There is a lot of competition, but one Trump-hater stands out for utter, implausible, easily-refuted inanity in attempting to demonize opposition to the organized attempt to force our southern border open to anyone who wants to come here and sign up for the rich subsidies and benefits offered to poor people.”

 

Jim Acosta’s lecturing of President Trump about harmlessness of caravan requires an apology. Thomas Lifson – “for his inaccurate contentions about the harmlessness of the caravan and his prediction that they wouldn’t storm the border. He should have heeded Yogi Berra, who warned, “It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” … Twitter is full of humor at Acosta’s expense

 

Secretary Nielsen reports. Scott Johnson – “an update on what occurred and attempt to dispel many of the rumors and much of the misinformation circulating.”

 

“First, the violence we saw at the border was entirely predictable. This caravan, unlike previous caravans, had already entered #Mexico violently and attacked border police in two other countries. I refuse to believe that anyone honestly maintains that attacking law enforcement with rocks and projectiles is acceptable. It is shocking that I have to explain this, but officers can be seriously or fatally injured in such attacks. Self-defense isn’t debatable for most law-abiding Americans.

 

At the border: dealing with the invasion that isn’t an invasion. Neo – “The bad news (although it’s not news in the sense that it’s certainly not new): the US left (which now has come to include most Democrats, it seems) finds this outrageous. The tear gas, that is.” All of a sudden, SOP under Obama is now reason for outrage.

 

“The mob that stormed the border was not a Children’s Crusade; it consisted predominantly of young men. There were some children and women in it as well, however, a leaf out of the Palestinian book of putting children in harm’s way in order to get some good photo ops and play on the sympathies of the left in the country trying to protect its border. Tear gas is a miserable experience, but its time-honored use is to disperse crowds without the use of more permanently harmful means of crowd control.

The entire approach is a sort of left-handed (and leftist-generated) compliment to the people of the country it is used against. The more brutal the country really is, the less likely the opposing force is likely to use it, because truly brutal countries have no qualms whatsoever about using the deadliest of forces against anyone—including children—who would invade it, storm it, or otherwise harm it.

 

Why We Hate the Media, Chapter 12,186. Steven Hayward – “As if we need any more reason to distrust media bias, this juxtaposition says it all:” It’s the NYT from January and November. Fake News is not just False News.

 

Watergate revisited. Scott Johnson – “For those of us who lived through the days of Watergate, the Mueller Switch Project makes us feel young again. It is easy to forget, however, how little we know even to this day about the facts underlying the Watergate scandal.” Alinsky’s rules could make an interesting counterpoint.

Jack Shafer: the conservative revolt against twitter.Wake me up when this sad little uprising is over.” … Or as Ben Domenech wrote last night in a multipart tweet “Jack Shafer’s piece unintentionally illustrates why his suggestion for conservatives on Twitter utterly misses the point.”. Stephen Green picks up on this bit of misdirection at Instapundit. – “My take is that Shafer was in such a hurry to condemn Glenn’s self-removal from Twitter as “sad,” that he missed the real story. … Or if you’d like an even shorter take on Shafer’s latest for Politico: Fake news.”

 

 

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Credibility and false witness don’t share mindspace

The Enemy of the People’. Andrew C. McCarthy – “The president’s “fake news” and “the enemy of the people” epithets are best understood as a reiteration of these longstanding complaints in the barbed Trump style.” Here is an epic struggle with cognitive dissonance. Consider the assertion “a president would be impeached before a journalist spends an hour in prison for unflattering coverage.” But this wasn’t the result when it happened under the previous administration. Like the issue of politically tainted judges, an important issue is highlighted by stating the obvious. Too many have entirely too much of a struggle dealing with it and want the statement ‘toned down’ or said in a less blunt way. They end up mouthing overdone narratives like Trump Lies in a way that echoes their objections to how Trump’s Truths are expressed.

The Media’s Credibility Is Dead. R.C. Maxwell – examples given and explained …

“To be fair, anyone regardless of race or social class can be guilty of problematic views, but to tie me to white supremacy as a means to score points off an event that conflicts with one’s worldview is to abuse one’s position a journalist and continue the trend of dishonesty in the media. RWW may not be the most respected media outlet in the country, but it ranks on Google and has been spoken highly of by respected media outlets such as The Washington Post and the New York Times.

The Right Wing Watch article that calls me, the director of Arizona’s Black Conservative Federation, a white supremacist is still up. So is the Daily Beast article and image that attempt to link Posobiec to Richard Spencer and two neo-Nazi brothers arrested in a violent plot. These are just two trespasses of many that the media will continue to get away with.

When it comes to undermining faith in democracy, another low point. Byron York – “For more than two years, voters have heard Democrats accuse Republicans of trying to undermine confidence in the American democratic system.” But consider the Georgia case.

California Burning: How the Greens Turned the Golden State Brown. Edward Ring – “Opinions vary regarding how much of this disaster could have been avoided, but nobody disputes that more could have been done.”

“For decades,” Grimes notes, “traditional forest management was scientific and successful—that is until ideological, preservationist zealots wormed their way into government and began the overhaul of sound federal forest management through abuse of the Endangered Species Act and the ‘re-wilding, no-use movement.’”

But neither outcome is likely, and the reason should come as no surprise—we are asked to believe that it’s not observable failures in policy and leadership that caused all this destruction and death, it’s “man-made climate change.”

Expect tepid progress on new preventive measures, in a state so mired in regulations and litigation that for every dollar spent paying heavy equipment operators and loggers to do real work, twice that much or more will go to pay consultants, attorneys, and public bureaucrats. Expect “climate change” to be used as a pretext for more “smart growth,” which translates into “stack and pack,” whereby people will be herded out of rural areas through punishing financial disincentives and forced into densely populated urban areas, where they can join the scores of thousands of refugees that California is welcoming from all over the world.

Never forget, according to the conventional wisdom as prescribed by California’s elites, if you don’t like it, you are a climate change “denier,” a “xenophobe,” and a “racist.”

This is the issue that underlies the California wildfires, what causes them and what to do about them. What is a “sustainable” civilization? One that embraces human settlements, has faith in human ingenuity, and aspires to make all humans prosperous enough to care about the environment, everywhere? Or one that demands Draconian limits on human settlement, with no expectation that innovation can provide solutions we can’t currently imagine, and condemns humans to police-state rationing of everything we produce and consume?

That is the stark choice that underlies the current consensus of California’s elites, backed up by dangerous and growing cadres of fanatical militants.

Friday’s required federal climate report is just another example of the Californication of government.

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Tactics; Hidden objectives

Democrats use vote fraud to play their last hand: global warming. A. Dru Kristenev – “After two years of trying to pin the tail on the Donald to no avail, the democrats cranked up voter fraud to make a last ditch effort to suspend the workings of our Republic.”

“Underlying the prospect of stealing the election, which appears to have worked in Nevada, Arizona and Utah, is invoking the usual democrat stratagems. Since the Russian collusion gambit didn’t work after two years of hype from every liberal corner, especially the media, the democrats have determined it’s time to haul out the tried and true climate change scheme in order to gain the upper hand.

Hot Times In Your Home Town? John Hinderaker – “My point in this post is not to rehash the many arguments surrounding the global warming theory, but rather to pose a question: Why is it that so many people seem willing to believe that their environment has gotten significantly hotter, even when that claim is, or should be, contradicted by their own experience?

Even California Cannot Defy Nature Forever. Victor Davis Hanson – “The state’s horrific wildfires are a reminder that abstract progressive ideologies impose life-and-death consequences on millions.”

“What is going on in California? Governor Jerry Brown, most of the Democratic-majority state legislature, the academy, and the administrative state have rushed to blame man-made global warming for the undeniable dry spell from May to mid-November that turned mountain canyons into tinderboxes.

If our life-giving reservoirs of the state’s vast California Water Project and federal Central Valley Project are currently not full, it is mostly because millions of acre-feet of stored water were released to flow into the San Francisco Bay estuaries and the delta—contradicting most of the original mandates of the water projects of providing flood control, power generation, lake recreation, and irrigation for California residents.

Left unsaid is that more than 130 million trees died throughout the state’s foothills and mountain ranges during the drought of 2011–2016 and were not removed from the forest floor, providing an immensity of natural kindling for fires.

Other force multipliers combined with the drought and poor forest management to ensure that California’s fires were especially destructive to human habitats.

Sincere flattery. Richard Fernandez – “Coopting the talking points of political foes and taking credit for their achievements is a time-honored tactic.”

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Will we find what has been lost?

On Thanksgiving, I’m Thankful For Trump. Bruce Bawer – “Finally, a president who isn’t a turkey.”

“I’ve been of voting age in eleven presidential elections. I voted in most but not all of them. Usually both choices were uninspiring. Whom to pick, a dimbulb D.C. drudge (Ford) or a smarmy phony (Carter)? A charmless technocrat (Dukakis) or an establishment empty suit (Bush senior)? In 1992 I bought Slick Willie’s act; the disillusion set in almost immediately after his inauguration. Bush junior and Obama were the two worst presidents since Wilson, but the men who ran against them weren’t world-beaters either. Even the one great president of my lifetime prior to 2016, Ronald Reagan, fell way short of carrying out the sweeping small-government reforms he’d pledged.

Past experience, of course, had taught me not to put too much stock in anything a politician says. But Trump was no politician. He wasn’t the front man for a bunch of rich guys or the mouthpiece for a staff full of policy wonks. He wasn’t scripted. He wasn’t focus-grouped. He wasn’t a mannequin projecting sham humility and offering up fake compliments to the hoi polloi. Yes, Obama had been a rousing orator, but he’d always been reading spiels written for him by a speechwriter. Trump was connecting with ordinary Americans in long, tireless, and patently sincere stream-of-consciousness monologues some of which were, frankly, tours de force. He was palpably having fun with it and actually enjoying the human contact.

This guy was talking in real language to real people about the things that really mattered to them and that he himself had been thinking seriously about for decades.

The answer: wow. So far, the results have exceeded all of my expectations. The border wall aside, Donald J. Trump has actually kept his promises, and then some. He’s done one good, gutsy thing after another.

U.K. Media: British Intelligence Heads Worried President Trump Will Discover Their Involvement in “Spygate”. Sundance – “An article published originally in the U.K. Telegraph, and republished via Yahoo News outlines growing fear within the U.K. government and British intelligence officers surrounding President Trump discovering how far they were involved within “Spygate”.

“The facts are not uncommon to anyone who has done research into the events of 2015 and 2016; however, the interesting aspect surrounds the current level of anxiety which indicates something is soon to become very public.

The central concern of the British officials surrounds President Trump declassifying evidence that will outline a coordinated effort by a weaponized U.S. intelligence apparatus to use their foreign counterparts for two aspects

Out: Russia. In: Saudi Arabia. Thomas Lifson – “The progressive narrative of President Trump as evil never changes, but the argument keeps changing.”

“Since Trump must be a pawn of nefarious foreigners (except when he is a dangerous nationalist, heedless of our obligations to other nations), we now have hysterical accusations that he is instead a pawn of Saudi Arabia, because he insists on maintaining the strategic relationship with that Arab absolute monarchy.

Yesterday, Democrat Representative Tulsi Gabbard, using vulgar language, accused the POTUS of being a Saudi agent, which would be treasonous

Barack Melts Down. John Hinderaker – “This is the central conceit of liberalism: we know how to solve the world’s problems–socialism!–but those pesky conservatives just won’t go along and make it unanimous.”

“The truth is the opposite: policy debates rage across a broad range of issues, and conservatives usually win them.

But, like a dead frog whose legs continue to kick, clueless liberals like Barack Obama parrot the pro-government line, not because it makes any scientific sense, but because it supports their statist desires.

Which brings us to the rest of Obama’s riff: Americans are “confused, blind, shrouded with hate, anger, racism, mommy issues.” This is more or less insane

We have entered a new era in American politics, and, make no mistake, it is the Democrats who have ushered in the juvenile, no-holds-barred epoch in which we live. Barack Obama should be condemned for the part he plays in debasing American political discourse.

Or consider Juan Williams on The Five in a dialog about civility over dinner. His answer was to dig out the trivia he uses to support Trump hatred as conversation topics where all could agree. It is amazing what he puts on the pedestals in his mind … but also rather telling. Instapundit on this: Leftists’ Fear/Hatred Of Their Families, as exemplified by leftist media all over explains a lot about their politics. Another insight is Stop pretending you don’t love Thanksgiving. Bridget Phetasy – “You get to tell your whole family that they’re fascists.” Mr. Williams, are you listening and can you tell satire directed at you when it is in your face?

“Obama judges”? Pretty much. Paul Mirengoff – “I like and respect Chief Justice Roberts, but I disagree with him.” This is the polite disagreement. For something more extensive and stronger, see Fischer’s comments following this citation. Keep in mind that the problem with a judicial oligarchy was a significant Trump campaign issue. The Chief Justice stepped in it …

“The questions of whether it matters who appointed a federal judge and whether such judges view litigants, including President Trump, with equal regard in any meaningful sense are empirical ones. If one can predict with a high degree of accuracy how a judge will rule in a highly controversial case, or in a case challenging a Trump edict the left doesn’t like, just by knowing which president appointed that judge, then Roberts’ defense of the federal judiciary fails.

I practiced law without appearing more than a handful of times before Obama-appointed judges. But even in the pre-Obama era, I could predict with a high degree of accuracy the way federal appellate court judges would vote in cases involving controversial, politicized subject matter

Chief Justice Roberts is right that we have an independent judiciary in the sense that no one can tell judges how to rule. He is also right that we should be thankful for this.

But we also have a judiciary in which federal judges very often decide controversial cases based on policy preferences and partisan considerations. No president has told them how to vote, but presidents have selected them based on which ideological side they are likely to uphold, and, especially in the case of Democratic presidents, the judges rarely disappoint.

Of Course We Have Obama Judges and Trump Judges, Clinton Judges and Bush Judges. Dov Fischer – “As the Left makes a mockery of the lower Federal Courts that we need to honor.”

“Impartial justice is central to life’s core values. The very notion is engraved into our Constitution, and our Founding Fathers even took steps to preserve judicial impartiality by guaranteeing federal judges lifetime tenure so that they never would fear personal ramifications of issuing unpopular decisions they believe justice demands.

One easily can read between the lines of a frustrated and perplexed Chief Justice John Roberts when he now desperately claims, with patent nonsense and perhaps even a dry sense of humor, that “we do not have Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges or Clinton judges.” Of course we do! The ACLU knows that we do. Roberts knows that we do. Everyone knows that. The radical “Progressive” cabal of Democrats and their Left Media stooges know it. Heck, the Obama and Clinton judges know it. Why did The Resistance go to war trying to destroy Clarence Thomas and Brett Kavanaugh? Why does the ACLU always run to the Ninth Circuit, up and down the West Coast, instead of seeking justice from a conservative appellate circuit in the Deep South? … But Roberts knows his denial is stuff and nonsense, and that it sounds ridiculous — even borderline delusional — to deny that today’s federal judiciary is chock-full of Obama judges and Clinton judges on a mission to stop President Trump’s agenda.

The system makes a mockery of the courts, as Chief Justice Roberts now desperately realizes. It creates a cynicism towards the rule of law by manipulating and leveraging judges into pawns of Democrat “Progressives.” Even if the liberal judges are trying to rule impartially, the context behind their very selections undermines their authority. People see that the ACLU and its ilk repeatedly run to Democrat-appointed judges under the umbrella of the Ninth and get the results they want. It creates a terrible aura of cynicism that “the fix is in” and that politics is ruling, not blind justice.

In so many ways, President Trump has reversed so much of Obama’s eight years, leaving so much as if Obama never were there. We are out of the nonsensical Paris Climate travesty, out of the Iran Deal, out of the bad NAFTA. Regulations have been reversed in grand style. The individual mandate is gone. Tax policy changed. The IRS is honest and no longer weaponized against political opponents. The Left media are exposed. The unemployed have returned to work. Food stamps no longer are a religious sacrament. College students falsely accused of rape now may defend themselves. There will be control of the southern border. Cuba and Venezuela no longer are our best two friends in the world, and Israel no longer is our worst pain. ISIS no longer rules half of Syria, and Putin has stopped expanding into his neighboring countries. NATO is paying some bills. For two years we have been spared Trayvon Martin dramas and the scene of cities burning like Ferguson (Michael Brown, “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot!” — never happened and no indictments) and Baltimore (Freddy Gray, all accused officers acquitted). We have closed down the PLO office in Washington, no longer are supporting terrorism by funding the UNRWA in Gaza, walked out of the terrorist-enriched UN Human Rights Council, moved America’s Israel embassy to Jerusalem, and voted against the annual UN resolution against Israel in the Golan Heights. White House visitor invitations are extended to patriots, not to people who sing lyrics extolling cop-killing, and overpaid fools who are given millions of dollars to throw or run with a ball are denounced when they disrespect our flag and national anthem.

It increasingly falls on the President to focus on making the lower and mid-level federal courts every bit as Constitutionally faithful as he has worked to make the Supreme Court. The way he marks the federal bench these next two years will play a major role in bench-marking his place in history. And if he succeeds, he might even improve Chief Justice Roberts’s place in history by creating a more balanced court that places the law and objective fidelity to the Constitution above Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals.

Instapundit – “If judges are as neutral and apolitical as Roberts pretends, then why so much sturm und drang over judicial appointments?”

“Two thoughts. First, in talking about “Obama judges,” Trump was merely echoing the common media trope that identifies judges in controversial cases based on who appointed them. …

Second, Roberts is in a particularly poor place to talk about apolitical judging after his transparent capitulation to the Obama Administration’s campaign of media bullying during the pendency of the ObamaCare case. He reversed his position in response to political pressure from an administration that was, at the time, a party to the case. He has no high horse to sit on.

UPDATE: Chuck Grassley to Chief Justice John Roberts: You Rebuked Trump — but Sat Silent Through Obama’s Abuse. The increased feistiness of people like Grassley and Orrin Hatch post-Kavanaugh has been an amazing thing to behold.

Living on the Edge. James B. Meigs – “Just as coastal communities must learn to live with hurricanes, communities that edge up against forests are going to have to learn to live with fire.” On Slate of all places, but there is the expected dig at Trump where the wildfire is dismissed as a factor so Trump’s comments about management can, obviously, be dissed. Like the note about Williams above, supporting hatred can require a lot of pickin’ and choosin’ and other denial of reality. But let’s look for the part of the commentary that does tell about what actually happened and how it could be addressed.

“if you look closely at photos and video of the aftermath, you’ll notice something surprising. The buildings are gone, but most of the trees are still standing—many with their leaves or needles intact.

Within Paradise itself, the main fuel feeding the fire wasn’t trees, nor the underbrush Trump suggested should have been raked up. It was buildings. The forest fire became an infrastructure fire. … The town of Paradise didn’t just experience a fast-moving wildfire, its own layout, building designs, and city management turned that fire into something even scarier.

like almost every disaster that kills large numbers of people and damages communities, the causes of the tragedy in Paradise are more complex than it first appears.

A number of environmental, political, and economic trends converged in Butte County in just a few hours on Nov. 8 to spark this fire. But the tragedy was the result of many longer-term decisions, decades in the making.

So, California’s fire country faces a double-barreled threat: More lives and infrastructure lie in the path of potential fires than ever before. And the fires are getting bigger. That combination explains why 6 out of the 10 most destructive fires in California history have occurred in the past three years.

The question is how to provide the right incentives for people so that we limit the chances of this happening again. Looking ahead, “We need to ensure that prospective homeowners can make informed decisions about the risks they face in the WUI,” Moritz, Tague, and Anderson say.

What else can be done? Building and zoning codes can be changed to make towns less fire prone. Homes that are built or retrofitted with fireproof materials—and landscaped to keep shrubbery away from structures—can usually survive typical wildfires. In new developments, homes can be clustered and surrounded by fire-resistant buffer zones, such as orchards. And, no matter how well designed, communities in fire zones need realistic evacuation plans and better emergency communications.

If global warming models hold true, fire seasons are going to be hotter and last longer. Just as people in coastal areas need to adapt to hurricanes, residents of fire country need to learn to live with fire.

Can’t forget “global warming” despite no evidence it exists much less aggravates disasters. It is worth noting the comparison to coastal areas where the dilemma has always existed about whether the build disposable structures or bunkers as reliance on insurance and government for recovery has about run its course. A great attraction for being a ‘beach bum’ or forest camper is a pleasant environment with a low cost of living – until the next hurricane or forest fire. Easy living: cheap, avoid maintenance and preparedness costs, take it as it comes …

California is struggling with the other source of compensation, the big pockets power company. It is the electrical grid bouncing in the wind that sparked some of these fires and is an easy target for culpability. Since the state is so gung-ho on renewable energy and solar panels, perhaps they should just make any electric power infrastructure crossing these forests illegal?

To understand the fire, Neo cites The Camp fire burned homes but left trees standing. The science behind the fire’s path. Thomas Curwen and Joseph Serna – “Gray smoke meant vegetation. Black smoke meant homes, possibly entire city blocks. The Camp fire was no longer just a wildland fire.”

“It was an urban conflagration,” Pangburn said. “It was structure-to-structure-to-structure ignition that carried the fire through this community.” … what Pangburn realized is that the Camp fire had changed its character upon entering the town — and in that revelation lay the hope for preventing tragedies such as this from happening again.

Most telling were the trees. Most of the pines that sheltered this community still had their canopies intact. The needles, yellowed from the intense heat, were not burned — evidence that the winds that morning had pushed the fire along so fast it never had a chance to rise into the trees. But as a surface fire, it lit up the homes that lay in its path.

Drawing lessons from tragedy is never easy, especially when those lessons have been known for years.

“Our problem is a society that is unintentionally, but actively, ignoring opportunities because of the cultural perception of wildfire,” said Jack Cohen, who is retired from the U.S. Forest Service where he worked for 40 years as a fire research scientist.

That perception, he argues, is based on myth and fear and complicated by an ongoing narrative that attributes conflagrations like the Camp fire to such factors as climate change, overgrown forests and urban encroachment into rural areas.

The first step, Cohen said, is to address the misinformation about wildland fires.

“When we look at the big flames but not the firebrands, we miss the principal igniter and pay attention to the show,” Cohen said.

Billions of these embers fly into neighborhoods, landing onto flammable roofs, into vegetation around the structure and rain gutters choked with leaves and needles.

We don’t have to live in ammo bunkers, Cohen said, and we don’t have to entirely eliminate fire from within the perimeter, just ensure that fires that occur within 100 feet don’t burn long enough or intensely enough to ignite other objects.

If Paradise and the other communities destroyed by the Camp fire are to be rebuilt, then the conversation must address the role that neighbors play collectively in protecting themselves and their environment.

Keys to Democratic success. Neo – “I continue to be surprised at how many people seem to think the direction in which the Democratic Party is going now is just peachy keen.”

“The first reason states the positives of what the Democrats offer: they promise “free” stuff to people who really do need it or who feel they need it. …

The second reason states the negatives of what Democrats say Republicans offer: racism and bigotry. The left has successfully managed to brand the right, even the moderate right—in fact, any Republican …

The actual consequences of a given policy in the real world, and the fact that most people in both parties want the common good and just have different ideas about methods to achieve it, has gotten lost.

Not a Hollywood Horror Story: Actor Loves Making Hallmark Movies. Jacob Comello – “Polhala admits that he was reluctant at first to do any work for Hallmark, whose channels have traditionally been the haunt of senior citizens and the families of their grandchildren.

“Hollywood has become synonymous with cynicism, entitlement, hypocrisy and group think. Its products and its people seem to be in a race to the bottom.
… 
Polhala mentions that his Hallmark films are by far the ones that get him the most notoriety nowadays, and don’t sacrifice family-friendliness to get him there. He relates that “… I am leaning into Hallmark because it’s fun to sit with my 7-year-old and show him what I do for a living … I’m leaning in because my 91-year-old Nana finally thinks I’ve made it in Hollywood because I’m on Hallmark.”

Polaha concludes with “… if you haven’t indulged yet, perhaps this is your year to go where the love is.” Sage advice.

So much has become lost. Perhaps some are re-discovering to find it anew.

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Brainwashing amazement

Dan Crenshaw deflates anti-Trump hysteria on Face the Nation with common sense. Thomas Lifson – “This broad brush criticism that the president is somehow undermining our democracy, I always wonder like, what exactly are we talking about?” See a video clip where the standard meme and narrative is questioned.

American’t: From Midterms to End Times. Selwyn Duke – “Whatever you call it, the American republic is in its last days. This is too scary for many to contemplate, but there’s something far scarier: playing ostrich and not being prepared for things to come.”

“But this isn’t your grandfather’s Democrat Party. Voters this time empowered socialistic to socialist to closet-communist, sexual devolutionary, rabble-rousing, low-I.Q., no virtue, ignorant freaks who often encourage political violence by their Antifa-Brownshirt useful idiots. So it’s not your great-grandfather’s America, either.

The voters are only getting worse, too, for three basic reasons: immigration, indoctrination and moral corruption.

Today’s brainwashing, not just by academia but also media and entertainment, is intense. Moreover, we can’t MAGA unless we MAMA — Make America Moral Again. As Ben Franklin put it, “Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters.” Yet academia, media and, especially, entertainment subject each generation to an ever intensifying demoralization process.

Not only is society drifting ever further from Truth (“leftwards”) for the aforementioned reasons, but consider the Democrats’ delusional perspective. Projecting, many of them have convinced themselves we’re Nazis, fascists, bigots and un-American, evil haters who have undermined the rule of law, created a constitutional crisis and who represent a clear and present danger to the republic — we’re “deplorables.” Believing this, wouldn’t you suppose these were desperate times that called for desperate measures?

Democrat Losers: Undignified and Dangerous. David Catron – “What do Al Gore, Hillary Clinton, Stacey Abrams, and Bill Nelson have in common? Each asked the voters for important positions of leadership and promptly proved themselves unworthy of those offices when the answer was “No.

“The tawdry details of those episodes are well known. But the long-term harm they wrought on the republic merits consideration.

This is the platform of a moribund party awash in dark money yet bereft of genuine ideas for improving the lives of average Americans. And, if gaining power over all three branches of government requires destroying the credibility of our electoral process, the Democrats are for it. Not one called for Abrams to stop accusing Brian Kemp — without evidence — of voter suppression. Not one asked Bill Nelson to stop accusing Rick Scott — without evidence — of meddling with the Florida ballot count. Not one gives a damn about dignity or democracy. All they care about is power — and that is dangerous.

Voters Electing Democrats Who despise Them. Taylor Lewis – “Countries don’t survive when their leaders condemn the very citizens who constitute them

“Sinema is different. Like most liberals, she believes her intellect to be far above the average, her tastes more refined than the crude proclivities of the masses.

Which gets to the paradoxical truth about many left-liberals running for public office: Often times, they despise the very people they’re entrusted with representing. In more extreme cases, they’re hostile to the society in which they assume a leading position.

“The safety of a republic depends essentially on the energy of a common national sentiment…and on the love of country,” Alexander Hamilton wrote. Countries don’t survive when their leaders contemn the very citizens who constitute them. And they certainly don’t last long when voters, knowing full well their negative estimation, elect politicians who deplore them anyway.

K-12: Six Steps to Reform Education Right Now. Bruce Deitrick Price – “Whenever people gather to discuss problems in education, we hear the same list of issues and solutions.” One needs go no farther than to listen to the new Californicated Nevada governor talk about how he will fix Nevada schools.

“We hear about poverty and the need for bigger budgets at all levels, more self-esteem, professional teacher corps, charter schools, vouchers, tutoring and remediation, new literacies, better assessment, year-round schools, pre-K, schools that are more permissive or more strict, the effects of drugs, the impact of violent sports, and the perpetual need for more and more money.

The main effect of these discussions is that the Education Establishment distracts the public from the real solutions.

Here’s a simple six-point list of what we must do differently, a list that even self-described “dummies” can instantly act on.

Public schools often define “critical thinking” as acceptance of politically correct opinions on all subjects. This is neither critical nor thinking!

Truth is, the history of K-12 education for the last hundred years was a so-called reform process going in the wrong direction. A deform process. Progressives destroyed the good ideas and replaced them with dysfunctional gimmicks. Now we reverse the process.

The Ultimate Fake News. John Hinderaker – “So the Democrats, by their constant hysteria and innuendo, have convinced a large majority of their followers, and 42% of all Americans, of a palpable falsehood that was fabricated in order to assure Hillary Clinton’s election and then, when that effort failed, perpetuated in an attempt to cripple President Trump’s administration.”

“Fake news is a serious problem in our political life. I’m not referring to a pathetically small number of Facebook ads bought by Russian provocateurs. I’m talking about the fake news that was paid for by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee; fabricated by Democratic Party-allied consultants; propagated by the FBI and the CIA; promoted by the broadcast networks, CNN, MSNBC, the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Associated Press; trumpeted by pretty much every senior elected Democrat; and kept alive by the appalling Robert Mueller. The claim that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians to “steal” the 2016 presidential election is the great fake news of our time.

How successful have the Democrats been in propagating that myth? This survey by The Economist and YouGov suggests that they have been successful beyond their wildest dreams. First the numbers, then some observations.

President Trump is right: fake news is a serious threat. By cynically selling an absurd lie to its followers, the Democratic Party has badly damaged confidence in our democracy.

#CampFire #WoolseyFire Blaming climate – ignoring incompetence. Paul Driessen – “California wildfires incinerate people, wildlife and habitats. Politicians blame climate change.”

“Those assertions have no basis in fact. The hard, incontrovertible reality is that California has always been a largely arid state, afflicted by prolonged droughts, interspersed with periods of intense rainfall, and buffeted almost every autumn by strong winds that can whip forest fires into infernos. The problem isn’t climate change. It’s ideological, even criminally incompetent forest management practices demanded by politicians, regulators, judges and environmentalists in recent decades. My article presents the real story.

It’s complicated.

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Metacognition is missing?

Why People Deny Science. Steven Novella – “A new study further shows that people are inconsistent in how they justify their beliefs.” They key flag here is they use of “Deny” as it is used as a perjorative for those who don’t toe the ideological line. That suggests a diversion. Science denial is being substituted for the broader concepts in psychology concerning how humans deal with a reality they have difficulty accepting. This is about such topics as cognitive dissonance and grief. If that bias and diversion, which is its own example of the problems being discussed, is understood then the column’s insights gain good value.

What all of this suggests is that people do not usually engage in metacognition – thinking about their own thinking. They may have a cognitive style that they tend to use, but otherwise they engage in whatever type of reasoning serves their purpose on any particular topic. …

To counter this we cannot just teach science or explain what the evidence says. We need to teach critical thinking skills – which is metacognition. Critical thinking includes an understanding of all the various ways our thinking can go wrong. Just as important, however, is that critical thinking involves stepping back from our own cognitive process to examine it objectively, to make a sincere effort to consistently apply valid logic and the same fair and objective criteria for evidence.

Doing this is really hard, because people are very good at motivated reasoning. We are extremely creative at inventing reasons to reject logic and evidence we don’t like, and those invented reasons can create a powerful illusion of being correct – so much so that almost half of people feel comfortable saying that no new evidence could even theoretically change their mind on a topic.

The Present American Revolution. Victor Davis Hanson – “Destroying the Constitution and seeking state-mandated equality of result

“Our present revolution is more multifaceted. It is a war on the very Constitution of the United States that has not yet brought the Left its Holy Grail: a state-mandated equality of result overseen by an omnipotent and omniscient elite. The problem for today’s leftists is that they are not fighting Bourbon France, a reactionary Europe of 1848, or Czarist Russia, but an affluent, culturally uninhibited, and wildly free United States, where never in the history of civilization has a people attained such affluence and leisure.

The courts have become revolutionary. They now routinely overturn popular referenda, presidential executive orders, and legislative statutes, mostly on the principle that better-educated, more moral and experienced judges answer to a higher, more progressive calling and know what in the long run is best for the uneducated rabble.

Almost everything we have seen in just the last three months — the Kavanaugh chaos, the “caravan,” the ongoing Mueller octopus, recounting election results until they are deemed “correct,” the Beto and Gillum neo-socialism craziness, the swarming of a Fox News anchor’s home, driving public officials out of restaurants, the media circus at presidential press conferences — are symptoms of revolutionary America. In this conflict, one side believes it is not only not fair but also not allowable that it lacks the necessary power to make us all equal — but equal only in the eyes of a self-anointed elite.

Thinking about their own thinking?

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Can you see? Do you think?

Democrats and the Rule of Lawyers. David Catron – “Live by pettifoggery, die by pettifoggery.”

“As Graham put it, “In the eyes of Democrats, the law is just something to get around when it comes to winning what you want.” That’s why they’re dangerous. Our government, like the Roman republic, is based on the principle that no one is above the law. The Democrats have assiduously undermined that principle, but this is as dangerous for them as it is for us. They should consider Cicero, whose executioners had been sent by his young protégé, Octavian. The latter knew about those five executions and the former wound up with his head in a bag. Both men were above the law.

Camille Paglia, women, and #MeToo. Neo – “the last couple of decades have brought home to me the irrationality not just of so many women, but of so many men as well. And that seems to be increasing, too.”

“One of the reasons the Kavanaugh hearing energized so many women (and others) on the right to support Senate Republicans in the 2018 election is that it was a graphic example of how easy it is to “credibly” accuse an innocent man, and how even someone with a sterling previous reputation such as Kavanaugh is highly vulnerable to a woman who tells a good story in a believable manner, even without corroborative evidence, without important details such as time and place, and even though the events the woman alleges to have occurred supposedly took place many decades ago. It was a chilling prospect for anyone who believe in due process, the rule of law, and rationality over emotion when making a judgment about an issue so important.

Did John McCain kill the House in November of 2018? neo – “Did McCain’s “no” cause the GOP to lose the House? Maybe. If so, however, it was certainly misplaced anger on the part of any GOP voters who stayed home because of it. The fault was the Senate’s and McCain’s, not the House members’ at all.”

Forest Fires in the Golden State. Willis Eschenbach – “California Governor, Jerry “Moonbeam” Brown, has announced that all climate-change deniers are “definitely contributing” to the wildfires in the northern and southern parts of the state over the past few days, as well as blazes “in the coming years.”

“Since 1895, it [CA temperature average] has been going up at a rate of about 0.02°C, two-hundredths of a degree Celsius, per decade.

0.02°C is about the altitude-caused temperature drop between … wait for it … your toes and the top of your head. Far, far to small to even feel.

Well, if it’s not the temperature, how about the rainfall? Is climate change making the state dryer? Fortunately, the WRCC has the data for that as well.

Is the precipitation decreasing? Yes … by a totally meaningless five-hundredths of an inch (1.1 mm) per decade. So that is clearly not the reason for the increase in fires.

So what is the reason for the increase in fires? Actually, there are a few reasons.

First, our forests have not been harvested properly for some years.

Next, California regulations highly restrict both the logging and the thinning of forests.

Finally, a couple of years back we had a big El Nino/La Nina event.

Tragedy can focus the mind — or cloud it with emotions. 

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Let’s vote on a value of pi again …

Caravan not viewed nicely by people who actually know Honduras. Monica Showalter – “Yes, dishonest press coverage should take the cake.”

“This is also the era of first-person reporting and Internet instant transmission, so a little bit of the reality is getting out, and it’s not pretty for the caravan.

culture matters, and that poor Hondurans who are offered things for free often value them for exactly what they paid for them, which is to not value them at all, which suggests problems down the line for the states if these caravan migrants are let in

She [Jennifer Zilly Canales] also points out that the caravan itself is an enticement to irresponsibility, with children abandoned as their military-aged young fathers head off to the states in search of the gringo’s free stuff. Seriously, the children are dumped.

Seriously. With this garbage going on as the caravan takes off, is this what the press, and the Catholic Church, with its liberation theology acolytes, is really encouraging in a supposedly Catholic country? Is this kind of child-dumping what Pope Francis is encouraging us here in the states to support as he asks us to “walk with migrants”? It’s unvarnished moral turpitude and right there ought to disqualify anyone who does it from entry into the U.S. One wonders if the immigration officers would even ask about such a thing – did you abandon a child in the streets to get the goodies here – but it sounds like something that would be very difficult to prove.

What it all highlights is how thick the tissue of lies from the press really has been about an otherwise little-known country that has been painted as hell on earth, but which really isn’t. The people who have been cited have spent their lives working to help Hondurans better themselves in a real way. Along comes a caravan, promising paradise (and big gringo benefit packages), and their work is undercut.

Thank goodness they are saying something. Because with their accounts, the caravan stands exposed as a lefty political fraud.

1,600 “scientists” defy science to support transgender activism. Jazz Shaw – “What’s truly amazing is the fact that these supposed pillars of the scientific community are calling on the Trump administration to reject such notions and formulate a policy which is more scientific and ethically based. (This Hill)” It’s a common logical fallacy as often seen in the climate argument. A number of “scientists” offer themselves as sacrificial lambs to serve the idea that ‘might makes right’ and a vote of the people can settle matters of reality and fact.

“The authors go on from there to adopt a favorite trick of activists and attempt to conflate the conditions displayed by the tiny fraction of the population with legitimate intersex traits caused by genetic anomalies (a completely valid topic) and all of the people who just really, really, really feel like they were born in the wrong body. Granted, some men produce more or less testosterone than others. That doesn’t make the ones producing less women. Ditto for females and estrogen levels.

What we’re seeing here is the downstream effects of the corruption of the educational system by liberal politics. As schools are overrun by social justice warriors and those controlling the flow of grant money bend to liberal demands, we’re seeing this nonsense now being passed off as science. And as it bleeds over into other areas, everyone in society will be paying the price for it.

NY Times launches histrionic alarm over “white nationalism” days before election. Jazz Shaw – this is an example of why Fake News™ is an enemy of the people.

“The sad part is that this is a conversation the public could benefit from if it were conducted impartially. There are clearly still pockets of violent racism out there. And while thankfully very small in number, when they act up our law enforcement resources need to be able to take them down. If you choose to belong to a branch of the Klan or march around with a swastika chanting about Hitler, we have to defend your right to free speech. But when you go beyond speaking an begin busting heads, you’re going to the slammer. But the same must apply to all of the left wing groups who attack groups of conservatives or take to the streets calling for the execution of cops.

Of course, the groups in those latter categories won’t be mentioned by the Gray Lady until we get past this election.

Another Kavanaugh Accuser Lied, Allegations Were A “Ploy” To Derail Nomination. Nina Bookout – “I’d say that Judy Munro-Leighton is in deep kimchi right about now.” The perfidy of the Democrats unravels. That’s now two retractions to add to the complete lack of evidence and other problems.

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Modern-day Robespierres

Investor’s Business Daily has two of note today. Midterm Elections: 5 States Could Wreck Their Economies In Futile Fight Against ‘Climate Change’ – “Next week, voters in five states will decide whether they want to raise their own taxes, kill jobs and lower their standards of living.” Memo To Midterm Voters: It’s Democrats, Not Republicans, Who Are The Extremists Today – “But look at the data, and you see that it’s Democrats who are increasingly well outside the mainstream.”

The Electronic Committee of Public Safety. Victor Davis Hanson – “

Investor’s Business Daily has two of note today. Midterm Elections: 5 States Could Wreck Their Economies In Futile Fight Against ‘Climate Change’ – “Next week, voters in five states will decide whether they want to raise their own taxes, kill jobs and lower their standards of living.” Memo To Midterm Voters: It’s Democrats, Not Republicans, Who Are The Extremists Today – “But look at the data, and you see that it’s Democrats who are increasingly well outside the mainstream.”

The Electronic Committee of Public Safety. Victor Davis Hanson – “Modern-day Robespierres send counterrevolutionaries to the virtual chopping block. They should recall his fate.” Megyn Kelly provides the example.

“Millions of Internet sleuth volunteers play the 18th-century role of the shouting mob in the street, as they google the condemned person’s name in search of a prior quote from YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, or any random outlet that can prove a “pattern” of incorrect expression or counterrevolutionary behavior.

We now fear the lethal wrath of the Internet’s Committee of Public Safety. But beware of fickle revolutionary temperament. Soon our 21st-century Robespierres may become so promiscuous and obnoxious in their beheading that they wear out even the mob — and find themselves next in line on a counterrevolutionary chopping block.

Is It ‘Hate Speech’ to Tell the Truth? Robert Stacy Mccain – “It is not yet illegal to tell the truth, however, and Republicans trying to prevent a Democrat takeover of Congress are telling the truth while it’s still legal.”

“Two days ago, CNN’s Jim Acosta wrote on Twitter: “We are not the enemy of the people. I am not your enemy. You are not my enemy. It is wrong to call your fellow Americans the enemy. We are all on the same team. We are all Americans.” This was a lie, of course. If you vote Republican, you’re not on “the same team” as CNN. They consider you their enemy, because you refuse to acknowledge their authority to tell you what to think and how to vote. This is the real “hate” problem in America — the media elite’s hatred of anyone who disagrees with them.

Lemon: Stop demonizing people. Also, white men are the biggest terror threat. Ed Morrissey – “It’s tough to know which is funnier: Lemon’s smugness as he delivers this rhetorical whiplash, Chris Cuomo’s hostage-tape face, or the “FACTS FIRST” chyron that displays through the whole pathetic rant.”

“The larger problem is our societal obsession on immutable characteristics as determinative rather than character. Not only have we not progressed past race and ethnicity, we practically wallow in it. We’re obsessed with ethnic identity as a marker of authenticity; we get DNA tests to claim it, we incentivize it through public policies that were intended to redress undeniable oppression and disadvantage. This obsession does nothing but divide people up into tribes rather than bring them together into communities. Lemon’s formula here duplicates that of other bigoted fringe groups; he’s only choosing more socially acceptable targets. The best option for this game is not to play.

New liberal line: Don’t blame Trump. Blame all Republicans. Jazz Shaw – “According to Catherine Rampell at the Washington Post, we now live in a “poisonous, increasingly violent political atmosphere.”

“The usual pattern on cable news is for the various hosts to begin by saying, “I’m not saying this is directly President Trump’s fault, but…” before going on to explain why it’s totally President Trump’s fault. Rampell, however, offers a refreshingly different take on the subject. She insists that you actually shouldn’t blame Donald Trump. You should blame the entire Republican Party.

If this is what passes for political analysis at the Washington Post these days, there are places that require more housecleaning than the GOP. You can’t make everything “racist” by using terms like dog whistle every time someone expresses an opinion you don’t care for.

Revoking birthright citizenship would enforce the Constitution. John Eastman – “President Trump’s comments are not even set to air until this weekend, but already they have created a firestorm of commentary, most of it ill-informed.” In this case, it is about a caveat in the 14th amendment and what it means. send counterrevolutionaries to the virtual chopping block. They should recall his fate.” Megyn Kelly provides the example.

“Millions of Internet sleuth volunteers play the 18th-century role of the shouting mob in the street, as they google the condemned person’s name in search of a prior quote from YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, or any random outlet that can prove a “pattern” of incorrect expression or counterrevolutionary behavior.

We now fear the lethal wrath of the Internet’s Committee of Public Safety. But beware of fickle revolutionary temperament. Soon our 21st-century Robespierres may become so promiscuous and obnoxious in their beheading that they wear out even the mob — and find themselves next in line on a counterrevolutionary chopping block.

Is It ‘Hate Speech’ to Tell the Truth? Robert Stacy Mccain – “It is not yet illegal to tell the truth, however, and Republicans trying to prevent a Democrat takeover of Congress are telling the truth while it’s still legal.”

“Two days ago, CNN’s Jim Acosta wrote on Twitter: “We are not the enemy of the people. I am not your enemy. You are not my enemy. It is wrong to call your fellow Americans the enemy. We are all on the same team. We are all Americans.” This was a lie, of course. If you vote Republican, you’re not on “the same team” as CNN. They consider you their enemy, because you refuse to acknowledge their authority to tell you what to think and how to vote. This is the real “hate” problem in America — the media elite’s hatred of anyone who disagrees with them.

Lemon: Stop demonizing people. Also, white men are the biggest terror threat. Ed Morrissey – “It’s tough to know which is funnier: Lemon’s smugness as he delivers this rhetorical whiplash, Chris Cuomo’s hostage-tape face, or the “FACTS FIRST” chyron that displays through the whole pathetic rant.”

“The larger problem is our societal obsession on immutable characteristics as determinative rather than character. Not only have we not progressed past race and ethnicity, we practically wallow in it. We’re obsessed with ethnic identity as a marker of authenticity; we get DNA tests to claim it, we incentivize it through public policies that were intended to redress undeniable oppression and disadvantage. This obsession does nothing but divide people up into tribes rather than bring them together into communities. Lemon’s formula here duplicates that of other bigoted fringe groups; he’s only choosing more socially acceptable targets. The best option for this game is not to play.

New liberal line: Don’t blame Trump. Blame all Republicans. Jazz Shaw – “According to Catherine Rampell at the Washington Post, we now live in a “poisonous, increasingly violent political atmosphere.”

“The usual pattern on cable news is for the various hosts to begin by saying, “I’m not saying this is directly President Trump’s fault, but…” before going on to explain why it’s totally President Trump’s fault. Rampell, however, offers a refreshingly different take on the subject. She insists that you actually shouldn’t blame Donald Trump. You should blame the entire Republican Party.

If this is what passes for political analysis at the Washington Post these days, there are places that require more housecleaning than the GOP. You can’t make everything “racist” by using terms like dog whistle every time someone expresses an opinion you don’t care for.

Revoking birthright citizenship would enforce the Constitution. John Eastman – “President Trump’s comments are not even set to air until this weekend, but already they have created a firestorm of commentary, most of it ill-informed.” In this case, it is about a caveat in the 14th amendment and what it means.

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Saving Face

Smothered: Six Democratic Scandals That The Elite News Media Suffocated With A Pillow This Cycle. Matt Vespa – “it shouldn’t shock us that the Media Research Center’s Newsbusters division probably has carpal tunnel syndrome from jotting down all the insanity that is transpiring across CNN, MSNBC, and the Big Three (CBS, NBC, and ABC).”

“Let’s be honest. We all know this game. If these were Republicans, the media would have peddled a narrative of scandal and sleaze that would have saturated this election cycle. It must be nice to be a Democrat. You can lie, cheat, steal, and (allegedly) beat women with zero consequences because there will always be an expansive media complex that will give you tons of cover. Same as it ever was.

Ellison accuser: Why won’t anyone believe me — when I’ve provided corroboration? Ed Morrissey – “This is far more than anything provided by Ford, Deborah Ramirez, and Julie Swetnick over the last few weeks. Democrats and the media demanded an FBI investigation into those anyway, but have little if anything to say about Monahan. And you don’t even need one guess to know why.”

Political Violence Comes to Minnesota. John Hinderaker – “Any time you see “Republicans seized,” you know you are reading an article by a Democratic Party reporter.”

“Similar incidents are taking place across the country. It isn’t just Antifa brownshirts in Portland and New York; low-level political violence by the Left is being mainstreamed. The problem with low-level violence is that it can rapidly escalate. So far, due to the miracles of modern science, no Republican politicians have been murdered by Democrats. Let’s hope that is still true on November 7.

Cheeky girl demands moonwalker, geologist to shut his mouth on geology. Luboš Motl – “And now, an arrogant left-wing journalist demands you to admit that if you have walked on the Moon, every piece of arbitrarily fishy left-wing pseudoscience must also be true.

“Nevertheless, this pathetic female nobody has enough arrogance to demand that despite the monologue that has made so much sense, the famous geologist Harrison Schmitt doesn’t speak for geologists. He didn’t even speak “for geologists” – he just said how things are being evaluated in geology which is the field where he was trained. And she didn’t even attempt to present to have any evidence or isolate an imperfection in Schmitt’s monologue. She just unashamedly told him to shut his mouth because she clearly found his observations inconvenient – she must believe that this is how things should work in science.

This exchange is another great example showing the far-reaching consequences – destructive consequences for whole countries and our civilization – of the affirmative action and the reckless reduction of the spanking of kids. Affirmative action doesn’t just mean that for ideological reasons, 50% of the people whom you hire don’t do anything useful in some occupations and the efficiency gets halved. It’s worse than that. Many of the “invisible” ones actually contribute with the negative sign – they actively undermine the system and everyone who has actually achieved something tangible. (That’s why it’s so great that Hungary has banned “gender studies” at the public universities.) They don’t respect any meritocracy and any authorities that emerged from the old meritocracy. They only respect themselves and the political interests of similar parasitic additions to these fields.

There Is No Middle Ground for Disagreements About Facts’… Except When It’s a Straw Man. David Middleton – citing Klemmens Kappel: “Climate skeptics have insulated themselves from any evidence that would otherwise be rationally compelling.” contrast to the reality provided …

Deep Disagreement on Facts. Maggie’s Farm – “Ignoring facts and blaming other people for not ignoring them with you is not a disagreement on facts.” It doesn’t seem she’s observed Juan Williams on The Five as one example that refutes the idea that “People tend to agree about facts, so the adjudication process remains adequate.”

The Origins of Progressive Agony. Victor Davis Hanson – “In the wake of Obama, the Democratic party was a shipwreck, to be saved only by Hillary and the Supreme Court …

“What has transformed the Democratic party into an anguished progressive movement that incorporates the tactics of the street, embraces maenadism, reverts to Sixties carnival barking, and is radicalized by a new young socialist movement?

The catastrophic yet suicidal loss in the 2016 election and the disappointment over the Obama presidency radicalized Democrats. A combative Trump himself certainly enraged them, on a variety of political, social, and cultural levels.

When Democrats lost, they realized that they still lived in a Republic and not a volatile Athenian democracy — and found this also hard to take.

More exasperating still was the loss of the Supreme Court, the last bastion of elite brilliance and superior morality that might yet save America from the prejudices and ignorance of the irredeemables, deplorables, clingers, and crazies.

Add it all up, and it was enough to drive any liberal to binge progressive drinking.

Trump the knuckleballer. neo – “Hanson’s essay is well worth reading in its entirety; a summary hardly does it justice. I believe he intends “agony” in both its meanings, suffering and contest, and I believe it is the correct word for what the left is going through right now. It is by no means clear who will win this struggle, long term.”

“During the primaries, Trump’s Republican opponents never quite figured out how to wrestle this particular alligator. In the time since he’s been president, some of the Republican NeverTrumpers are still going at it and failing, although most have given up the agon and praised him, albeit sometimes reluctantly. Now it’s the Democrats who are engaged in a struggle with this strange opponent, continually thinking “Gotcha!!” and continually being bested.

Which brings me to another metaphor, appropriate for this time of year: Trump as knuckleballer. The knuckleball pitcher confounds batters with the zaniness of the ball’s behavior once it leaves his hand. It doesn’t require extreme force but it’s not an easy pitch to throw and it’s a very difficult one to control. But it can make ordinarily good hitters look bad; they often just can’t figure out what’s going on, and they end up looking silly when they swing at a knuckler.

What do you do to save face when you’ve been shown a dupe?

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Evidence keeps popping up as dots in the big picture

Trail Covering: As Predicted U.S. DOJ and Treasury Turn on Oleg Deripaska. sundance – “Because of the associations with the scheme and coup-plotters, Oleg has buckets of dirt on corrupt U.S. officials who were trying to target Donald Trump.” And, are you wondering where the ‘golden showers’ in the Steel Dossier came from?

“Oleg Deripaska is a typical Russian gremlin, and if you research him you can tell he loves mocking the corrupt elements within U.S. politics. I’m almost positive it was Oleg who put the Trump “pee tapes and hookers” into the Steele Dossier just to see if the knuckleheads in the DOJ/FBI would actually use it.

Considering Christopher Steele was a contracted employee of the billionaire it just looks like something Oleg would do. Deripaska and many Russian political types just work that way. To them, manipulating U.S. officials is funny….. ‘stoopid Amerikans‘ etc.

The Russians (Deripaska) really do have leverage and blackmail… but it ain’t over Trump. Oleg has blackmail on Comey, McCabe and conspiracy crew. Oleg Deripaska must be kept away from congress and away from exposing the scheme.

The Democrats’ Moral Confusion. Karen McQuillan – “Christine Blasey Ford’s accusation against Judge Kavanaugh was deeply unethical.” Despite the denials, the hysteria, the accusations against witnesses, projection, and the prejudice and bigotry on display, reality does not move and that presents a problem for the Democrats. McQuillan walks through the components of their moral dilemma.

“Bearing false witness is of the utmost seriousness as a moral breach. It breaks the Ninth Commandment, “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.” It is right up there with murder and stealing, because it partakes of both.

At the end of his life, Moses spells out in detail God’s teaching on how to safeguard an innocent man from false accusations. One witness is not sufficient to lodge an accusation. Two witnesses do not suffice. There must be three witnesses.

Moses also spells out the need for consequences – that is, punishment – for bearing false witness.

The Democrats think anything goes ethically in their drive for power, because they have defined their desire to rule as ethical in itself, and their political opponents as evil. We have just experienced what happens when a just cause – to end sexual abuse and assault – is twisted to serve a partisan political purpose.

America has become morally confused. Good and evil do not lie along party lines. To follow that moral reasoning leads to horrors.

There are others who are unable to avoid false witness despite the evidence in front of them. See, for instance, Partisans on Both Sides Fervently Believe the Other Side Is More Devious and Less Constrained by Ethics at the Coyote Blog. “Both sides” ?? can you cite equivalent ethical breaches for both sides and maintain any pretense of being objective? This is asserting guilt by innuendo and is in the same league, ethically, as the false witness against Kavanaugh. But the perpetrator in this case is blind unto himself and that is where there is a very big problem for all of us.

Kavanaugh Casualties. Victor Davis Hanson – “Yes, both parties are now more united and energized. But one did so by enticing the recalcitrant back into the fold; the other, by warning them to join the revolution or be guillotined.”

“When Donald J. Trump rants at his rallies about “fake news” and claims that the media is not just biased but lies, Americans wince — but now more so at the accuracy of his charges and no longer so much at the crassness with which he delivers them.

New Kavanaughcalypse hotness: If you accuse, you must recuse — from all “politically charged” cases. Ed Morrissey – “By that measure, shouldn’t Ruth Bader Ginsburg already be recusing herself from the same cases? In July 2016, Notorious RBG told the New York Times’ Adam Liptak that it might be time for her to move to New Zealand if Donald Trump got elected.”

“Best guess: That’ll worry Kavanaugh as much as it worries Ginsburg, which is to say not at all. He’s there to do his job, just as she’s there to do hers. There’s only one Supreme Court and only nine members on its panel, which is why recusals are very rare, and occur as a result of real and personal conflicts of interest or previous work on cases that come before the court. Elena Kagan recused herself from a few such cases when it involved work she did as Solicitor General; various justices have felt it proper to recuse on rare occasions when their investments involved one of the parties. Otherwise, activists can demand recusals as much as they want, as long as they’re prepared to look like fools, shrieking about bias while exposing their own.

The ever receding climate goalpost: IPCC and Al Gore “12 years to save the planet” (again). Anthony Watts – “Ah, it’s beginning to sound like a broken record. The same message over and over again. It’s as if these folks don’t pay attention to history. The United Nations has once again issued another dire climate change report (SR15, see it here) claiming we must act before it’s too late.” It’s amazing how flexible the goalposts are to the Left.

“In the meantime, the audit of faulty climate data suggests the rush to judgment is unwarranted.

But as the new book, The Politically Incorrect Guide® to Climate Change reveals, climate tipping points have a long history of repetition, moved deadlines and utter failure. The book documents that the earliest climate “tipping point” was issued in 1864 by MIT professor who warned of “climatic excess” unless humans changed their ways.

The climate change scare campaign has always relied on arbitrary deadlines, dates by which we must act before it’s too late. Global warming advocates have drawn many lines in the sand, claiming that we must act to solve global warming—or else.

False witness infects many passions.

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guilty one way or another; a long descent

Kamala Harris: Make the FBI investigate Ford allegation, not us by Ed Morrissey – “For a former Attorney General and a sitting US Senator, Kamala Harris (D-CA) has a lot of trouble grasping basic concepts such as jurisdiction.”

“Not only does it not involve a federal crime, it doesn’t have enough specificity to warrant a local police investigation either. At least from the reporting so far, Ford doesn’t have a specific time or place where this occurred, and the only other named person in the allegation — Mark Judge — denies it ever happened at all. Plus, the statute of limitations would have long ago passed on an aggravated assault, especially when committed by a minor. But even if Ford remembered the specific date, time, and provided the names of potential witnesses, and it had happened within the statute of limitations, it still wouldn’t be the FBI’s jurisdiction. It’s a local crime, and the local police would have to investigate it.

The state of California is very lucky not to have Harris in charge of law enforcement if this is how she perceives the administration of justice. Unfortunately, they stuck the rest of us with her.

Kavanaugh’s will be the end of “normal” SCOTUS confirmations by Jazz Shaw – “If Ford is telling the truth, or at least a story with more than a kernel of truth at the heart of it, then such accusations will be impossible to completely refute. But if the charges are false and Kavanaugh’s career is left in ruins, that’s just as bad, if not worse.”

“The professor’s story simply can’t be completely proven or disproven absent some totally remarkable piece of physical evidence or truly compelling testimony from multiple individuals with remarkable memories and sterling reputations for unvarnished truth-telling. And with that, the weapon has been put on the table. Given the arc of politics in the modern era, do you honestly think that nobody else will pick it up in the future? The #MeToo moment is spawning many children and some of them are looking very problematic.

The Wall Street Journal nails it by Scott Johnson – “Today’s Wall Street Journal has published an editorial on the Kavanaugh ambush. I detect Kim Strassel’s hand in the editorial. The Journal condemns the charade staged by Senate Democrats starring Christine Blaesy Ford” – Johnson also provides Reflections on the devolution – “The long descent on which Senate Democrats have taken us now results in the smearing of Brett Kavanaugh. Neither Chuck Schumer nor Dianne Feinstein — nor any of the other Senate Democrats who announced their opposition to Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court months ago — is fit to carry Kavanaugh’s briefcase. How have we arrived at this pass?”

Climate Alarmism Fails the Test of Observation by John Hinderaker – “The catastrophic anthropogenic global warming theory is falsified by observation, and therefore is wrong. Ken Haapala, SEPP’s President, explains. There is far more at the link, but I will try to excerpt enough to make the point comprehensible

“In most industries, if you produced calculations that were off by a factor of 2.7, you would quickly be out of a job. But government, and pro-government research, are different. Here the purpose is not to be right, but to produce alarmist reports that, amplified by uncritical news stories written by ideologically aligned journalists, justify ever-greater government control over the economy and many billions of dollars in “green” cronyism. When the whole purpose of an enterprise is corruption, truth is only an inconvenience.

Still, truth remains an annoying presence–annoying, that is, if you are a global warming alarmist. Feynman’s adage remains indisputable: a theory that is disproved by observation is worthless.

Dispatches from District 48: Adding Solar to Our House — Here Is Why – “Our house has always been a good candidate for solar. It has a large flat roof, good sightlines to the south, and we live in just about the best solar location in the country (Phoenix). The problem has been two-fold

“The total payback comes to just about 10 years for our system. At historic cost of capital numbers this probably does not pencil out but today with ZIRP it makes sense, especially with the extra benefit of some immunity from outages. Even to get to these numbers you folks had to chip in to help my economics, in the form of the 30% tax rebate you are giving me and the above-wholesale price you are paying me for power I put into the grid.

[footnote] there is an added subsidy in the equation there from well-meaning but naive stockholders.

somebody else pays.

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Reactions to disappointment

Trump Voters and the Bitter Elites by Steve McCann – “Penzeys is a private entity and its president can say whatever he chooses. But the condescension and the not so veiled intimation that Trump voters are mindless buffoons drips off the page and is typical of the mindset of the elitist cabal.”

“As he reveals in his missive, Mr. Penzey and his fellow travelers are obsessed with racism as that is the most common accusation hurled by this clique. In their addled thought process racism is the sole province of Republicans and those repugnant Trump voters. In reality, it is far more prevalent among the Left and the Democratic Party.

Meanwhile, the cancer that is antisemitism is also rapidly metastasizing throughout the Left and the Democratic Party.

Mr. Penzey, I and my fellow 63 million Americans do not have make amends for a damn thing. Perhaps you and your fellow elitists should make amends for foisting Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and an unabashedly neo-socialist, racist and authoritarian Democratic Party on the nation.

Obama Attacks Trump by Ed Brodow – “Once more, the Democrats are attempting to get away with their signature political gambit — blaming their opponents for what they themselves have done.”

“To progressives, diversity has nothing to do with equality as defined by Dr. Martin Luther King. Instead, they prefer George Orwell’s suggestion that (in a totalitarian society) “some animals are more equal than others.” The left’s version of diversity means that we must give special privileges to certain protected classes of people so they can acquire control over the system at the expense of the majority. I call this the “tyranny of the minority.”

Donald Trump, in sharp contrast, cherishes the values that Obama holds in contempt. Trump’s commitment is to the foundational principles of the Constitution. He rejects minority identity politics. He wants to unify the country in its own self-interest. Trump’s objective is to drain the Washington swamp that benefited from Obama’s legion of illegal executive orders.

Dirtiest Trick In U.S. History Comes Into Focus by Conrad Black – “The almost unnoticed fact in the latest Democratic assault on the Trump administration is that it is based entirely on charges of confusion, the circus, incoherence, and nastiness.”

“On what has emerged to date, fanatically anti-Trump figures in Justice and the FBI swallowed Mr. Steele’s story and invested in it so heavily they severely compromised the institutions that employed them. Once Mr. Trump was elected, instead of letting the ruse die quietly, they swallowed harder and set out to claim that the election result was fraudulent because of the illegal Trump-Russian collusion.

Damning New Strzok Text to Page: “The Times is Angry With Us About the WP Scoop” by Sara Carter – “These series of text messages appear to contradict statements made by Strzok’s attorney, Aitan Goelman, after it was revealed earlier this week that Strzok and Page discussed a “media leak strategy” in some of their text messages.”

WaPo: Trump ‘complicit’ in hurricane Florence by Rick Moran – “The Washington Post has published some silly editorials over the years, but perhaps none reach the pinnacle of silliness like the editorial they published today that accuses Donald Trump in being “complicit” in a hurricane.”

“Even if you believe the theory of global warming, stating that there is “no reasonable doubt” that humans are responsible for any increase in hurricane intensity is either a statement of ignorance or an outright lie.

John Kerry won’t deny that he told the Iranians to wait out the Trump presidency by Allahpundit – “Undermining Republican presidents on foreign policy while abroad has been Kerry’s life work, both as a young man and an older one. He’s a living, breathing reminder that the Logan Act exists only on paper.”

News Shocker: Media fact-Checks Barack Obama, at least this once by Andrew Malcolm – “One of the things the mainstream media never quite got around to during Barack Obama’s brief 2,922 days in office was fact-checking his every public comment. Probably just an oversight.”

It’s Official: Google Is a Democratic Party Front by John Hinderaker – “Someone leaked to Breitbart an hour-long video of an “all hands” Google meeting that was held just after the 2016 election.”

“You really have to see it to believe it. Having suffered through the hour-long cri de cœur–OK, to be fair, there is a huge element of schadenfreude, too, and you will relish much of it–you probably will have several reactions: 1) These people may have certain valuable technical skills, but they aren’t very bright and are unusually lacking in self-awareness. 2) It is remarkable that they can achieve such an extraordinary monoculture in an organization with thousands of employees. It must require vigorous enforcement of right-think. 3) It is easy to see how these uniformly left-wing robots/people seamlessly transitioned into Resisting the duly elected Trump administration.

Mob rule in science at Maggie’s Farm – “This is the second time in one week (see Roundup in Breast Milk?) where I have read of scientific journals stifling studies due to fears of mob action: Academic Activists Send a Published Paper Down the Memory Hole … I blame the cowards more than the “activists.”

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The real threat is inside

Obama’s Benghazi Body Bags No Mere Conspiracy Theory by Daniel John Sobieski – “The arrogance of the man who lied to the parents of the Benghazi dead in front of their sons’ caskets as they were returned to the country they fought for is mind-boggling.”

“As he attempted to rewrite many chapters of his failed presidency in a speech at the University of Illinois, he called the accurate and documented reports of the criminal negligence of secretary of state Hillary Clinton and himself during the September 11, 2012 terrorist attack on our Benghazi compound a mere “conspiracy theory.”

Conspiracy theories don’t produce body bags, sir, but perhaps you don’t remember that night all too well because you spent the time four brave Americans were being killed under your command in Libya readying up for a Las Vegas fundraiser.

Conspiracy theories don’t produce body bags” and the memory lingers. It is behaviors and events that tell the tale and there is a stunning contrast between the previous and current administrations.

Anti-Trump desperation grows by Don Surber – “The media keeps crying impeachment while President Trump plants the seeds, reaps the wheat, grinds the grain, and bakes the bread.”

“President Trump delivers, on time and under budget.

The media cannot stand it because he keeps proving them wrong. For example, they said — and hoped — that tariffs would trigger a global recession.

Maybe in China and Europe.

I agree with Conrad Black, who wrote, “Trump has not got to this historic point by being the blustering and crooked buffoon portrayed by his enemies. He is a cunning and pitiless enemy. This is political mortal combat, and in evidentiary as in electoral matters, you can’t fight something with nothing.”

And nothing is all they have.

President Trump has something. Plenty of something.

The Circus of Resistance by Victor Davis Hanson – “The resistance to Donald Trump was warring on all fronts last week.” … “Barack Obama decided that ex-presidents should attack current presidents, and thereby reminded the country why Trump was elected.” Many other examples are provided.

“To cut to the quick, the op-ed was published to coincide with the latest Bob Woodward “according-to-an-unnamed-source” exposé, Fear. The intent of anonymous and the New York Times was to create a force multiplying effect of a collapsing presidency—in need of the Times’ sober and judicious handlers, NeverTrump professionals, and “bipartisan” Democrats of the sort we saw during the Kavanaugh hearing to “step in” and apparently stage an intervention to save the country.

The op-ed is the latest cartoon of Trump, the Road Runner, finally, at last, and for sure driven off the cliff by the Resistance as Wile E. Coyote—infuriated by yet another Road Runner beep-beep. There were earlier and serial Looney Tunes efforts to nullify the Electoral College, to sue about election machines, to boycott the Inauguration, to introduce articles of impeachment, to invoke the 25th Amendment, to try out the Emoluments Clause and the Logan Act, to sue by cherry picking liberal federal judges, to harass officials in public places and restaurants, to warp the FISA courts, to fund a foreign spy to do opposition research, and to weaponize even further the FBI, NSA, and Justice Department—along with the now-boring celebrity assassination chic rhetoric of blowing up, stabbing, shooting, burning, hanging, smashing, and decapitating Donald J. Trump.

The compare and contrast is laid out on the table for a blunt vivisection. There is so much material it is a wonder the table doesn’t collapse. Then take a gander at Betsy Newmark’s commentary to see just how serious reality distortion can be: “contemptible”, “buffoon”, “ the lowering of standards”, “constant mad, solipsistic tweeting”, “he drives his opponents so crazy that they expose themselves to be little better than he is” … compare and contrast and it leaves any rational person wondering what standards Newmark is using to evaluate behavior – or has TDS overridden reason?

Anatomy of a Fusion smear (4) by Scott Johnson – “Peter Stone and Greg Gordon of McClatchy News smeared Cleta Mitchell in their story “Lawyer who worked for NRA said to have had concerns about group’s Russia ties.”

“The gist of the McClatchy story was false. In “Fake news: A case study,” we saw Cleta dispute the veracity of the smear directly with Stone and Gordon. “You took some unnamed source,” she noted, “you put their false statement as the lead and you put my truthful on the record statement down in the story as some sort of denial. You are reprehensible. Your tactics are disgusting.” Bingo. We also saw that Stone and Gordon were unable to substantiate the smear with a single fact.

Working on this series over the past week, I finally came to understand Simpson’s modus operandi and to absorb related news of which I was only vaguely aware. As one might infer from Stone and Gordon’s April story about Cohen in Prague, Glenn Simpson and Fusion GPS continue their efforts to undermine Donald Trump unabated. The Federalist’s Sean Davis reported earlier this year, around the same time that Stone and Gordon’s Cohen in Prague story was published: “CONFIRMED: Former Feinstein Staffer Raised $50 Million, Hired Fusion GPS And Christopher Steele After 2016 Election.” The mission continues.

Harvard, Google, NSF, Springer, and others need a vigorous rat control by Luboš Motl – “Electronic tools make it easier for dishonest SJW terrorists to perform Stalinist purges.”

“Dr Hill has learned about the insufferable situation and the witch hunts that the feminists and similar radical neo-Marxists instantly launch whenever someone dares to say something that is related to this basic “heresy” – that men and women are different.”

The most unprecedented development occurred at the very end when the paper was already printed in an electronic journal. Totally silently, the paper was erased on the web and a completely different paper was placed on that spot. It’s creepy. And it’s clearly analogous to the “commissar who vanished” at various photographs with Joseph Stalin. Stalin liked someone up to the moment XY, then he disliked him, murdered him, and he erased the memory of that person from the photographs.

Feminists and similar neo-Marxists are obviously the current counterparts of Joseph Stalin. So far, they didn’t get the power to murder 50 million people – although many of them would love to surpass that number. But in other respects, what they can do is worse than what Stalin could. One difference is the following: In the good old times, a photograph was printed in the newspapers and there were hundreds of thousands of copies of that photograph. New photographs without the commissar could have been printed but the commissar couldn’t have quite vanished – there were many copies printed on the good old paper. Some of them were in people’s collections, bookshelves etc.

The story shows that the real threat for the integrity of the scholarly process aren’t politicians. It’s the feminists and other extreme activists masquerading themselves as scholars.

the real threat isn’t always obvious.

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Where envy leads

Someone Could Get Hurt by John Hinderaker – “What is striking to me is how unself-aware Acosta is.”

“He is “very worried” that “hostility whipped up by Trump and some in conservative media will result in somebody getting hurt.” But what about the violent, anti-Trump hysteria that is whipped up by many on the left, including Acosta himself? Someone already has gotten hurt, badly, as a result of that anti-Trump and anti-Republican frenzy, namely Steve Scalise. It is a miracle that he and other Republican Congressmen weren’t killed by Bernie Sanders volunteer and Republican hater James Hodgkinson.

It is possible that an extreme right-winger could try to harm a Democratic Party politician or reporter, or a Democrat wearing a Bernie Sanders t-shirt. But political violence exists pretty much exclusively on the left, and it has been going on for the last two years, at least. I’ve seen no sign that such violence concerns Jim Acosta–or, for that matter, any other liberal reporter or politician.

At Ace of Spades: “Democrat Senator: Heckling and Jeering Opponents Just “Isn’t a Thing On the Left.” All We do Is Bat Around Ideas about Healthcare and Such.”

This isn’t culture war. It’s worse. By Richard Jack Rail – “Progressives continue to astonish normal people with their complete incomprehension of normals (as Kurt Schlichter calls them) as human beings.”

“Perhaps that’s because they don’t see us as human beings. They call us unsavory names – deplorables, bitter clingers, toothless, plus every dirty word they can think of. They throw nasty, biological things. They spit on people. They shove people, break windows, start fights, and go out of their way to ensure that everybody has a bad day.

This isn’t “culture war.” Culture has nothing to do with it. It’s war on normality by Brownshirts, incited or paid for by the likes of George Soros and Tom Steyer. It has now graduated from street-fighting to trying to take down the U.S. government.

I will never understand these people’s hatred of America. They are unreachable by reason. It seems clear that they are trying to provoke a heavy, violent reaction from us so they can then haul out the artillery. They missed their big chance with Barama in the saddle but had been biding their time right along. They’ll just continue that until their next big chance. They need to be able to declare martial law.

Fire and fury: How government failures make wildfires even worse by Washington Examiner – “It’s hard for Easterners even to appreciate how dry the West is and how easy it is to start a massive fire.”

“Everyone is quick to blame global warming for this and all other natural disasters. But changes to local weather in this or that part of the country are by no means part of the same scientific consensus that climate change is real and caused in large part by human activity. Western droughts and forest fires have been around a long time, and so has climate change, but the fires have gotten much worse very recently, and government mismanagement of forests is part of the reason.

Congress has now given the Forest Service more funding for prevention, and the Trump administration is finally taking forest treatment and mitigation more seriously. But according to the Property and Environment Research Center, the backlog of restoration work could take decades to complete.

Manafort’s case proves ‘the swamp’ — not collusion — exists by John Podhoretz – “Instead of a story about Trump and the Russians, what the jury heard both from the prosecution and the defense on Tuesday was a narrative about the corrupting power of political influence-peddling on the part of Washington consultants.”

“Interestingly, the first two days of the Manafort trial have featured the judge repeatedly upbraiding Mueller’s prosecutors for trying to make it seem as though Manafort’s spending practices prove he’s a crook.

Envy driven prosecution is now a thing?

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