Cultural rot is not thoughtful, it’s horrifying

The Thoughtfuls vs. the Roughneck-in-Chief By Austin Ruse – “the letter was quixotic at best. At worst, it was an intellectual temper tantrum.”

a group of Catholic Thoughtfuls penned a letter that March warning that the Catholic project was in “grave danger” because of Trump’s “vulgarity, oafishness, shocking ignorance and . . . demagoguery.” They made a point of emphasizing Trump’s” demagoguery,” in fact, while also charging him with making a racist appeal to voters.

One of the more shameful charges was that Trump appealed to voters along racial and ethnic lines. The Catholic Thoughtfuls offered no evidence for this.

So, how has Trump done so far? How has he done for the concerns of the Catholic Thoughtfuls?

I wonder if the essential repugnance they felt, then, was merely stylistic. They live and work in highly refined circles where Roughnecks are mostly embarrassments. Trump is the Roughneck-in-chief. I wonder if many would prefer a gentlemanly loser to a vulgar winner.

It is not thoughtful to pronounce judgment on another without evidence nor is it thoughtful to express that judgment in ugly and vulgar terms. The Catholic Thoughfuls need to look in the mirror and examine the real source of their angst.

No, Colin Kaepernick Is No Muhammad Ali by Larry Elder – “By contrast, Kaepernick wants to have it both ways.”

GQ magazine named former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick its 2017 “Citizen of the Year.” In doing so, GQ overlooked NFL Houston Texans’ J.J. Watt, who raised some $37 million for hurricane relief. Many of Kaepernick’s supporters liken his protest to that of boxer Muhammad Ali, who refused to be inducted into the military. The comparison is not well-taken.

What about the merits of Kaepernick’s argument? Is there an epidemic of police brutality against blacks? The answer is no.

As to Popovich’s assertion about the “day-to-day feeling that many black people have to deal with,” what of the 1997 Time/CNN poll that found 89% of black teens found little or no racism in their day-to-day lives? And more black teens than white teens agreed that “failure to take advantage of available opportunities” was a bigger problem than racism. And this was 20 years ago, before the election and re-election of a black President.

Kaepernick’s protest was bogus from the start, and it only helped to create greater unnecessary tension between the black community and the police. “Citizen of the Year,” indeed.

How Eric Holder and Loretta Lynch handed Jeff Sessions a huge present By Thomas Lifson – “The Obama administration may have publicly aligned itself with anti-gun activists, but it consistently turned a blind eye to prosecute known criminals who tried to buy guns.”

Start with a high-profile denunciation of the DOJ’s failure over the last 8 years to protect the public. … President Trump then directs, via an executive order, his DOJ to prioritize prosecution of violations of the background check documentation. … Following that, AG Sessions announces his decision to beef up prosecutions

This gets the Trump administration on the side of doing something about gun violence, and discrediting his predecessors. It also directs public attention and energy away from new laws.

I call that a win/win. Except for Democrats and gun grabbers.

Another Lawless Judge: Federal Government Cannot Withhold Federal Grants from Cities Just Because They Defy Federal Law on “Sanctuary Cities” by Ace – “You don’t have a country when half of the country believes it can live in open defiance of the law.”

When at least half, probably two thirds, of the current government is part of #TheResistance against the actual legally-empowered government, it’s time to confess we no longer have a shared civic culture and we are no longer one people under the law or in sentiment and take a mature attitude towards a peaceable division.

Backbearings By Richard Fernandez – “it may be profitable in real-life Washington to go back a few years, as Dana Priest in the New Yorker does, to unravel a problem similar to that which baffled Sherlock: why did the dog not bark in the night?”

There are too many coincidences for it to be just bad luck. Some journalists are belatedly realizing they are living through the aftermath of the Big Bang. A huge strike happened without them even being aware of it and the scale of it is boggling. The Obama administration failed to detect the rise of the Islamic state, was surprised by the Russian invasion of Crimea and Putin’s intervention in Syria, did not see the rapid development of Kim’s nuclear arsenal and, publicly at least, ascribed the assault on the Benghazi consulate to a video — and as the New Yorker points out, were even blindsided by Russian election interference openly happening on Facebook.

Do Trump’s liberal critics seem increasingly unhinged? By James Bovard – “Trump is supposedly the gravest threat to American democracy since the secession of the Confederacy.”

It is understandable that folks would be riled by Trump’s bluster about revoking the broadcast licenses of his critics or calling for the firing of protesting football players. His administration’s rhetoric on trade and the drug war threaten to revive moronic policies that should have been banished forever by perennial failures. But while Trump poses plenty of constitutional perils, many of his opponents are even more authoritarian.

Anti-Trump fervor is making liberals far more illiberal.

Many Democrats sound ready to rush to impeachment regardless of what Trump has actually done. They seem inspired by the Soviet secret police chief who allegedly declared: “Show me the man and I will show you the crime.”

Many Trump opponents are the same type of zealots who, in the late 1700s, proudly labeled themselves “Friends of Government.” In their eyes, Trump’s greatest sin is tarnishing the majesty of the presidency and the federal government.

Hysteria remains the 2017 political badge of honor.

Where Good Is Bad: ‘The Energy of Slaves’ (Oil as ‘servitude’?) by rbradley –

“It is as if capitalism (really industrialism) got lucky because of the mineral (dense) energies. To which I respond: we are lucky, and returning to the energy poverty of renewables is to throw our good fortune away. This is the major theme of a book coauthored by Kathleen Hartnett White (the current nominee for the Council of Environmental Quality), Fueling Freedom: Exposing the Mad War on Energy (2016).

Details in BLS report suggest that earnings differentials by gender can be explained by age, marital status, children, hours worked by Mark Perry – “Language and words can be important. And that’s why I think it’s important and more accurate to refer to a “gender earnings gap” rather than a “gender pay gap.” There are reasons and Perry uses the data to delve into them.

Reflections: on witch trials by neo-neocon – “False accusations are repulsive to me (and a constant possibility), and the willingness of so many people to jump on the bandwagon of belief without significant proof has horrified me.”

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