Wednesday, May 31, 2017

We don't need no stinkin' public editor

Daily Caller: "The NYT Justification For Killing The Public Editor Position Is Woefully Inadequate At Best."

Basically, the Grey Lady is getting rid of their ombudsman because it claims it can process concerns and criticism through social media.  Have you ever seen the NYT comments page?  It runs the full gamut of political thought from "A" to "B".

Friday, May 26, 2017

"The decision is ridiculous"

Powerline: "The 4th Circuit's travel ban decision: an affront to the rule of law."  "For a court to say that a presidential order may or may not be constitutional depending on who the president is–constitutional if issued by a Democrat, unconstitutional if by a Republican–is the ultimate repudiation of the rule of law."

Extra - Byron York: "The majority's decision, as laid out by Gregory, suggests a mind-bending possibility: If the Trump executive order, every single word of it, were issued by another president who had not made such statements on the campaign trail, the court would find it constitutional."

Gianforte beats the media

Instapundit has a pretty good roundup of the Montana special election with a focus on the reaction of the media.  They are now Public Enemy #1 but don't seem to think there's a problem.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Heck of a job, Mainstream Media

The Hill: "Poll: Majority says mainstream media publishes fake news."  "Nearly two-thirds of Americans say the mainstream press is full of fake news, a sentiment that is held by a majority of voters across the ideological spectrum."

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Katy Perry's wall of love

Katy wants you to know that she has one of those "Coexist" bumper stickers on her Prius:
Pop megastar Katy Perry made an impassioned plea for people to “co-exist” and said that “barriers” or “borders” could detract from that goal...
In completely unrelated real estate news: "Katy Perry buys Beverly Hills mega mansion with infinity pool for $19M"
The property has five bedrooms and five and a half bathrooms, covering 2,815 sq ft and is tucked away in a gated community.
Yes, there's a gate, but - as you can see - it's a wall designed to send the message that "we’re just all loving on each other and we should just stay loving on each other."  Can you feel the love?

I'm 100% sure this is a "Law and Order" episode

Ace: "Detroit Female Genital Mutilators Planning to Claim Their Practice is a Right Supported by Religious Freedom"  As Ace quips: "Can't wait to hear all the feminists not talking about this case."  That's the price you have to pay when you'll do anything to avoid being called racist.

As expected

CNN: "Manchester Arena attack: ISIS claims blast that killed 22 at Ariana Grande concert."  Looks like the suicide bomber is one Salman Abedi.  "...known to British authorities prior to the attack."

Monday, May 22, 2017

Explosion at Manchester Arena

Live feed at Reddit.  Attack was at a Ariana Grande concert so most of the casualties are bound to be teenage girls.  Suicide bomber is suspected.

The lesson of Trump's presidency

Here's P.J. O'Rourke:
"The politician creates a powerful, huge, heavy, and unstoppable Monster Truck of a government," P.J. O'Rourke writes in his new book, How the Hell Did This Happen?. "Then supporters of that politician become shocked and weepy when another politician, whom they detest, gets behind the wheel, turns the truck around, and runs them over."
This was exactly the warning made by Conor Friedersdorf back in March 2016: "Tyrant-Proof the White House—Before It's Too Late"
Before moving into a new house, parents of small children engage in child-proofing. Before leaving the White House, Obama should engage in tyrant-proofing. For eight years, he has evinced a high opinion of his own ability to exercise power morally, even in situations where Senator Obama thought that the president should be restrained. At this point, better to flatter his ego than to resist it. You’ll be gone soon, Mr. President, and for all our disagreements, I think your successor is highly likely to be less trustworthy and more corruptible than you were.
This Atlantic piece refers specifically to foreign policy (e.g. drone strikes) but the same can be said for domestic policy.  It's an axiom of conservatism that "A government big enough to give you everything you want is a government big enough to take from you everything you have."  Well, now we've built up this gargantuan ship of state and put it in the hands of somebody who does not fit the mold of a traditional President.  Who knows which way we're going?

For those of us who advocated a smaller federal government and a limited executive branch, well, told ya so.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Hampshire College commencement was today

Breitbart: "'Penises cause climate change'; Progressives fooled by peer-reviewed hoax study."

Update - A commenter adds: "...they submitted their penis paper elsewhere and got rejected, before settling for a pay-to-publish academic paper mill."  I was not aware of that and it wasn't made clear in the Breitbart article.  Basically, there's a lot more motivation for these journals to publish your paper than more reputable professional journals.

Thanks for the clarification.  Still kinda funny, but with context added.

Look, I don't like the guy either

This is a post I can get behind, over at Legal Insurrection: "Please stop making me defend Trump."
This is not a new observation by any means. It was almost as bad in favor of candidate Obama in 2008, but a slobbering lovefest was far different a media trying to bring down a presidency without a single shred of substantive evidence to date.
Every major media outlet is breathless with "impeachment" with the outrage meter cranked to 11.  I fear there's going to be a lot of disappointment for these critics, starting with Comey's testimony.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Russia probe heating up

Not just "smoke" anymore?  McClatchy: "Russia probe reaches current White House official, people familiar with the case say"
The law enforcement investigation into possible coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign has identified a current White House official as a significant person of interest, showing that the probe is reaching into the highest levels of government, according to people familiar with the matter.

The senior White House adviser under scrutiny by investigators is someone close to the president, according to these people, who would not further identify the official.
Hmmm...this sounds at least like something after months of waiting for evidence of collusion.

To the safe spaces!

Yes, it's another one of these stories.  Hot Air: "Farewell free speech: Northwestern students shut down talk by ICE PR spokesman."

The definition of insanity

Wall Street Journal: "Connecticut, Nation’s Wealthiest State, May be Tapped Out on Taxing the Rich."
About $200 million of the drop in receipts came from the state’s closely watched top 100 earners, who are the source of an outsize proportion of the state’s revenue. Many of the state’s richest residents work for hedge funds, which have been hurt by a downturn in the industry.

Gov. Dannel Malloy has twice before bet that taxing the wealthy would help solve the state’s fiscal problems. But neither increase resulted in sustained revenue growth, according to his administration, which says it would be a mistake to do it a third time.
This is what happens when you structure your progressive tax policy to hit only the very rich: when their revenue drops, it's a huge hit for the state.  Interesting that Malloy has finally figured out to stop tapping out the rich, almost like there's a lesson to learn here.

Call the mohel

There's a Weiner that's about to get chopped.  Hot Air: "Weiner to cop a plea in sexting probe."

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Somebody broke the law here

Looks like it might be Jim Comey:
Under the law, Comey is required to immediately inform the Department of Justice of any attempt to obstruct justice by any person, even the President of the United States.  Failure to do so would result in criminal charges against Comey.  (18 USC 4 and 28 USC 1361)  He would also, upon sufficient proof, lose his license to practice law. 
So which is it: Trump tried to obstruct justice or he didn't?  The FBI chief can't file away personal memos to use as bargaining chips to exact revenge when everything goes south.

Tendentious jerk

Reddit thread: "I think I'm done with Bill Nye.  His new show sucks."

Update - It's official: "Reddit users brutally destroy Bill Nye’s new Netflix science show: ‘This is absolute dog s**t’."

Because of stuff he said

PowerLine: "It's official: On Trump's travel order, the Left is bonkers."  "Instead, they have to argue that it is “unconstitutional”–in the way in which liberals use that word, having no reference to the actual Constitution–only because it was issued by President Trump. They will eventually lose that argument. If it were accepted, it would effectively render the Constitution irrelevant. We would be living in a realm of pure, unconstrained politics."  

The crocodile at Mizzou

"An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last." Winston Churchill.

Daily Caller: "Mizzou Hemorrhages More Students And Cuts Jobs Because Of Black Lives Matter Protests."  The school just kept giving in to demands and feeding into the very "public perception concerns" that gave pause to prospective students.

Now watch this video on the correct way to handle this situation:

Climate change killed that tree!

A professor at the University of Washington says: "Uh, no."

Cloak and dagger

Well, this is some kind of story.  Fox News: "Seth Rich, slain DNC staffer, had contact with WikiLeaks, say multiple sources."  "The Democratic National Committee staffer who was gunned down on July 10 on a Washington, D.C., street just steps from his home had leaked thousands of internal emails to WikiLeaks, investigative sources told Fox News."

Monday, May 15, 2017

His own worst enemy

NeoNeoCon: "Trump's unforced errors."  He makes it impossible for even the most stalwart supporters to defend his actions.

Philadelphia freedom

Hot Air: "Fight for 15 champion DNC sued for not paying minimum wage."  Maybe getting paid was contingent on Hillary winning the Keystone State.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Message discipline and lack thereof

Politico: "Trump stokes fears of how he'd handle real crisis - After chaotic, self-inflicted week many fear chaos Trump can't control."

I cannot imagine how this White House could have handled the firing of James Comey in a more inept manner.  There was no unified message and when it looks like one is about to coalesce, Trump comes out and contradicts everybody, while inviting charges of obstruction of justice.  His Twitter feed is one grenade tossed after another.

The White House staff should secretly replace his Twitter account with a dummy Twitter that sends his tweets nowhere.  It's the same strategy that Ryan used to protect the world from Creed Thoughts:

Must be Saturday

Since the NY Times is running a story on the other side of the Obamacare debate: "Why some can't wait for a repeal of Obamacare."  Now the Times can claim they've been balanced on their reporting because they put this story in the least-read paper of the week.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Elizabeth Warren wants you deaf

Warren is taking a break from her book tour/endless fight to advance some legislation.  (I know, I'm as surprised as you are.)  I'm sure she thinks "I'm helping!" but as Reason Hit and Run notes, the end result of the legislation would be to price out low-cost hearing aids:
Far from stripping away regulation to make it simpler and cheaper for people to care for their hearing needs, the Over-the-Counter Hearing Aid Act of 2017 loads on regulation that would, if passed, likely drive low-cost alternatives to hearing aids out of the market.
The big players in hearing aids ("Big Ear"?) are pouring money into lobbying, companies like Bose that make a big markup on prescription hearing aids.  Either Warren doesn't know any better or she's trying to puff up her anemic legislative record.

Oh but that's different

Daily Caller: "John Oliver Benefits Big From A Tax Loophole Initiated By Donald Trump."  When are these one-percenters going to pay their fair share?

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

The man we need

Exit stage right

Hot Air: "Aetna will completely exit Obamacare exchanges in 2018."

Sunshine is the best disinfectant

The Corner: "Republicans should want the Russia 2016 story out in the open."  "For Republicans outside the Administration, especially on Capitol Hill, the overriding imperative right now should be to flush as much as possible about Russia and the 2016 election out into the open as soon as possible, while pushing the White House to line up a long-term, trustworthy replacement for Comey quickly."

It's a disservice to the new Administration and downright cruel to the Democrats' conspiracy wing to drag this out.  It's been almost a year and there's nothing tying Trump to Putin, a point recently reiterated by James Clapper.  Let's have it out.

Puerto Rico...not so rico

City Journal: "Isle of indebtedness."  "It’s accurate to say that Puerto Rico’s government is the ultimate creator of this disaster. But Washington contributed, by offering all the wrong incentives. We shouldn’t be surprised that Puerto Rico took them."

Why now?

I guess this is as good an explanation as any, although I've also heard that the Comey firing correlated with the installation of Rosenstein at Justice:
But why fire Comey now? The answer is simple. The day before, President Barack Obama’s former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper repeated, under oath, what he told NBC News’ Chuck Todd on Meet the Press on March 5 — that he had seen no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. That gave the Trump administration the breathing room to dismiss Comey — which it simply did not have before.
I heard somewhere that Sean Spicer was asked about Trump's faith in Comey a week ago and Spicer was like: "Oh, I haven't asked him recently."  Which was a weird thing to say, in hindsight.

Tuesday, May 09, 2017

Out of the blue

NY Times: "F.B.I. Director James Comey Is Fired by Trump."

Everybody's trying to figure out what's going on.  The general feeling is that this was a long time coming because of the way Comey handled the Clinton email investigation:
Mr. Comey broke with longstanding tradition and policies by discussing the case and chastising the Democratic presidential nominee’s “careless” handling of classified information. Then, in the campaign’s final days, Mr. Comey announced that the F.B.I. was reopening the case, a move that earned him widespread criticism.
Of course, the usual suspects are calling this a purge to throw off the Russia probe.  As Charles Krauthammer noted, it took a Democrat less than an hour to make a "Saturday Night Massacre" reference.

Update - Assistant Attorney General Rod Rosenstein lays out the case.

Because of bad stuff he said

Powerline: "ACLU makes it official: The only thing wrong with Trump's travel order is Trump."  In a hearing before the Fourth Circuit, the ACLU lawyer pretty much admitted the order would be Constitutional if submitted by a President Clinton, because she was nicer during the campaign.

Monday, May 08, 2017

Democracy dies in darkness but the narrative is immortal

Ace: ""Hate Crime" Reported on By Washington Post 15 Times Turns Out to Be, Get This, a Hoax; Washington Post Refuses to Run a New Story On the Hate Hoax."

To paraphrase a great movie, when the narrative is threatened by fact, ignore the retraction.

You had one job

Politico: "Coming soon: The fiscal cliff to end all fiscal cliffs - President Donald Trump and the GOP Congress will have to avert a debt default and government shutdown — and that's just for starters."

The new normal for budgeting in Washington is to wait for a crisis, pass a continuing resolution, and wait for the next crisis date to hit.  At its most fundamental level, it's the job of Congress to keep the government running by passing appropriation bills.  Do that.

Friday, May 05, 2017

The party that cried wolf

Guess what: we're all gonna die.  Exclamation point.  The Corner:
One of the things that’s most galling about the Obamacare debate is the stubborn insistence from all too many activists on the Left that we can have it all. We can have universal, affordable, high-quality health care, and the reasons why we don’t are due to the greed, heartlessness, and hatefulness of our political opponents. Santa Claus is real, they argue, and the only thing keeping him from shimmying down into your house is that spiked grate the GOP put at the top of the chimney.

But the GOP is used to this by now, and so are GOP voters. When it comes to arguments over health care, there truly is nothing new under the sun.
Somehow, we'll have to struggle through the fields of fire.  Heat Street: "Democrats and Media Go into Hysterics over Healthcare Bill, Just Like Everything Else."  Yawn.

It's because of your Diet Coke, Madison

Hit and Run: "Seattle Mayor Proposes Soda Tax To Fight White Privilege."

Serves you right

The Baltimore Orioles beat up on the Red Sox last night, so this is condign punishment.  Hot Air: "Maryland insurer requests 59% premium hike, says Obamacare in first stages of death spiral."

American Health Care Act

Here's a good explanation via USA Today: "What does the Republican Obamacare repeal bill actually do?"  Among the provisions:
The American Health Care Act would let insurers charge older customers five times as much. That’s intended to draw more younger — and healthier — people into the individual insurance market.
If I remember correctly, the original ratio of older health care recipients versus younger Americans was over 6-1.  In other words (unsurprisingly), older Americans use six-times more health care.  Obamacare perverted the very definition of insurance (risk pools, actuary tables) by setting this to a 3-1 ratio.  The kids realized they were getting a bad deal and stayed away, preferring to pay the tax penalty instead of expensive insurance.  Because of the looming death spiral, the Obama Administration had to launch the pathetic "pajama boy" ad campaign to trick the kids into joining the insurance pool.  But they didn't and insurance companies started to lose billions and here we are today.

The new entitlement

Breitbart: "Krauthammer: 'We'll be in a single-payer system' in 'less than seven years'."  "He added that Obamacare “failed at every level.” Yet despite that, “I think Obamacare wins the day, because it changed expectations."

Thursday, May 04, 2017

The NY Times falls into a trap of its own making

I've been trying to avoid looking backward to the Obama Administration or Hillary's latest excuses why she didn't win the White House.  It's old news.  But this article by Nate Silver has some great analysis: "The Comey Letter Probably Cost Clinton The Election."

One part I found fascinating was that Silver believes the NY Times played up the letter because they were sure Hillary was going to win anyway.  Plus, the tough reporting was a way to show critics that there's no ideological bias at the Gray Lady:
Why was the Times giving Comey’s letter such blockbuster coverage and at the same time going out of its way to insist that it wouldn’t affect the outcome?

The evidence is consistent with the theory that the Times covered the Comey letter as it did because it saw Clinton as the almost-certain next president — and Trump as a historical footnote. By treating the letter as a huge deal, it could get a head start on covering the next administration and its imbroglios. It could also “prove” to its critics that it could provide tough coverage of Democrats, thereby countering accusations of liberal bias (a longstanding hang-up at the Times). So what if it wasn’t clear from the letter whether Clinton had done anything wrong? The Times could use the same weasel-worded language that it often does in such situations, speaking of the Comey letter as having “cast a cloud” over Clinton.
In testimony before Congress yesterday, FBI chief James Comey said he wishes he could have found a third way between reporting and not-reporting the fact that Huma Abedin had forwarded classified information to Anthony Weiner so they could be printed out.  Either he's be accused of a cover-up, or unduly swaying the election.  The ideological bubble at the Times was so impenetrable, they convinced themselves they could do some tough reporting and it wouldn't hurt their girl.


Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Monday, May 01, 2017

Worth the wait

I don't know why this gif of a duckling jumping up a wall is so satisfying.  Maybe we've all had days like him.

Cancel my subscription!

Federalist: "Reaction To Bret Stephens’ Global Warming Column Shows Left Isn’t Interested In Debate."


PJ Media: "Study Finds Democrats Least Tolerant of Opposing Views."  To be sure, it's a small sampling of students at Dartmouth but it's funny that the most welcoming are Republicans.  "Get over here, you Commie, and let's hug it out!"