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Thursday, August 31, 2017

The Path to Success

TRIGGER WARNING:  In which I suggest that hard work and self-sacrifice are important to success.

For John, BLUFBack when I was young part of the way you improved yourself was to listen to criticism and critiques and then acted upon them.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

The above linked is a somewhat longer article is from Ms Heather MacDonald, in National Review, 29 August 2017.

The article is a comment on the uproar following the publication by The [Philadelphia] Inquirer of an OpEd titled "Paying the price for breakdown of the country's bourgeois culture".  The authors are Professors Amy Wax, the Robert Mundheim professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School ( and Larry Alexander, the Warren distinguished professor at the University of San Diego School of Law (

From the original OpEd:

Too few Americans are qualified for the jobs available.  Male working-age labor-force participation is at Depression-era lows.  Opioid abuse is widespread.  Homicidal violence plagues inner cities.  Almost half of all children are born out of wedlock, and even more are raised by single mothers.  Many college students lack basic skills, and high school students rank below those from two dozen other countries.

The causes of these phenomena are multiple and complex, but implicated in these and other maladies is the breakdown of the country’s bourgeois culture.

That culture laid out the script we all were supposed to follow:  Get married before you have children and strive to stay married for their sake.  Get the education you need for gainful employment, work hard, and avoid idleness.  Go the extra mile for your employer or client.  Be a patriot, ready to serve the country.  Be neighborly, civic-minded, and charitable. Avoid coarse language in public.  Be respectful of authority.  Eschew substance abuse and crime.

These basic cultural precepts reigned from the late 1940s to the mid-1960s.  They could be followed by people of all backgrounds and abilities, especially when backed up by almost universal endorsement.  Adherence was a major contributor to the productivity, educational gains, and social coherence of that period.

So the question from
Were Wax and Alexander wrong that the virtues of self-restraint, deferred gratification, and future orientation are key for economic and personal success?
If you followed the response of The Daily Pennsylvanian, the University Newspaper, as written by Mr Dan Spinelli, on 10 August, yes, because they dared say "Not all cultures are created equal’ says Penn Law professor in op-ed".  Yes, Professors Wax and Alexander ventured forth the idea that "culture" was part of what made the United States successful in the 1940s through the 1980s.

But, for Mr Spinelli, but mostly for his commenters, that idea of culture put forward by Professors Wax and Alexander is racist, sexist and homophobic and also anti-immigrant.  The last part is a little strange in that immigrants come here either to escape tyranny or for a better economic life.  That better economic life is built upon the values outlined above.  Followed by the immigrants I know.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

  Frankly, I wouldn't have used The Searchers as the lead in to the OpEd in The Inquirer.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Some Justice in Charlottesville

For John, BLUFProblems on both sides.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Pajama Media Report by Ms Bridget Johnson, 29 August 2017.


Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Wash Post Sees Antifa Problem

For John, BLUFEven The Wash Post sees the problem.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

An Opinion Piece by OpEd Writer Marc A. Thiessen, 30 August 2017, in The Wash Post.

Here is the lede plus one.  It is a more interesting story if you read the second paragraph as well as the first.

Last weekend in Berkeley, Calif., a group of neo-communist antifa — “anti-fascist” — thugs attacked peaceful protesters at a “No to Marxism in America” rally, wielding sticks and pepper spray, and beating people with homemade shields that read (I kid you not) “No Hate.”  The Post reports how one peaceful protester “was attacked by five black-clad antifa members, each windmilling kicks and punches into a man desperately trying to protect himself.”  Members of the Berkeley College Republicans were then stalked by antifa goons who followed them to a gas station and demanded they “get the [expletive] out” of their car, warning, “We are real hungry for supremacists and there is more of us.”

The organizer of the anti-Marxism protest is not a white supremacist.  Amber Cummings is a self-described “transsexual female who embraces diversity” and had announced on Facebook that “any racist groups like the KKK [and] Neo Nazis . . . are not welcome.”  The protest was needed, Cummings said, because “Berkeley is a ground zero for the Marxist Movement.”

The Democrats need to reject the Antifa extremism or die in the polling booths.

Hat tip to the Memeorandum.

Regards  —  Cliff

Democrats Turning a Corner

TRIGGER WARNINGS:  The Antifa are not your friends.
For John, BLUFThey may have awoken before it is too late.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

With the sub-headline:
Are Democrats ready to start admitting that Antifa is violent?
Yes, they are.  Remember, from yesterday, the statement from former Speaker Nancy Pelosi.  And this one.

From the Daily Caller News Foundation. The Reporter is Jonah Bennett, 29 August 2017.

Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguin said Monday it’s time to classify Antifa as a gang because of the brutal attacks against peaceful supporters of President Donald Trump Sunday.

Previously lionized by mainstream journalists as largely peaceful counter-protests to neo-Nazis, the press made an abrupt about face after more than 100 masked Antifa activists dressed in black showed up at a demonstration at Martin Luther King Civic Center Park on Sunday and began beating unarmed Trump supporters.

The attacks have prompted Arreguin to speak out against Antifa and call for the group to be classified as a gang, KPIX 5 reports.

Remember, those masked and hooded Democrats could destroy our form of Democracy by this time next year.

Hat tip to Memeorandum .

Regards  —  Cliff

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

House Minority Leader Pelosi Speaks Out on Antifa

For John, BLUFI am happy to see this.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

A Statement from the Office of Nancy Pelosi Democratic Leader, 29 August 2017.

The first paragraph:

“Our democracy has no room for inciting violence or endangering the public, no matter the ideology of those who commit such acts.  The violent actions of people calling themselves antifa in Berkeley this weekend deserve unequivocal condemnation, and the perpetrators should be arrested and prosecuted.”

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

"I detest America"

For John, BLUFThat is OK, probably Reporter Walter Duranty did also  Nothing to see here; just move along.

This is from Science Alert and Reporter Signe Dean, from 28 August 2017.

After not seeing the light of day for at least 30 years, a unique collection of letters by famous mathematician Alan Turing has been found in a storage space at his old university.
Well, apparently it isn't just the Antifa.  Way back when I was in Elementary School Noted Mathematician Alan Turing despised America, per a letter to a colleague.


Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Help Where You Can Get It

For John, BLUFCan't we drop the fight when we are busy rescuing folks?  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Pajama Media and Reporter Tom Knighton, 29 August 2017.

This would be Ms Logan Anderson (@LoganD_Anderson) formerly of the Clinton 2016 Campaign:

No, she can't.

For decades I have thought that Black America should have adopted the Confederate Stars and Bars as a symbol of their struggle, flying it proudly to show Black pride.

Regards  —  Cliff

Sunday, August 27, 2017

How Much for the High School?

For John, BLUFWe need to ask the elected officials the hard questions.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

MSBA delays vote on LHS funding until site issue is resolved

From The [Lowell] Sun, by Reporter Todd Feathers (, on 23 August 2017.

And why does the site issue need to be resolved, given that the City Council voted to put the High School near Cawley Stadium?  Because this is the age of Trump and the motto is never give up.

Here is the lede plus two from the Todd Feathers story;

BOSTON - While assuring city officials that they remain fully behind Lowell building a new high school, the Massachusetts School Building Authority board of directors voted unanimously Wednesday to delay approval of the city's current plan due to the fierce disagreements over where the school should be built.

That argument - which had seemed to be resolved when the City Council voted 5-4 to build a five-story school at Cawley Stadium - will soon spill into the courts, after the School Committee decided last week to seek a judge's ruling on whether it has authority to approve or reject the new school's location.

The MSBA board members said they could not risk taxpayer dollars to fund a schematic design that might be thrown out if a judge rules that the School Committee, a majority of which favors keeping the high school downtown, must approve the site.

If I had money to bet I would be putting it on no money from our Commonwealth and thus no new High School and no major renovation.

I did go to the web page of Lowell High School Project, looking for cost numbers, and found it to be disorganized and lacking in information.  They need a new web master. 

Then I went to The [Lowell] Sun for some numbers and found an article by Reporter Todd Feathers, published 3 June of this year—"Lowell High project to cost at least $336M".

  • Option 1:  (Renovation to the existing buildings, with no new construction) Costing $344 million ($130 million to the City).
  • Option 2:  (Renovation and addition to the downtown school on the current footprint) Costing $344 million ($135 million to the City).
  • Option 3:  (Renovation and addition to the current school that includes the acquisition of an adjacent office building) Costing $353 million ($143 million to the City).
  • Option 4:  (New four story high school at Cawley Stadium) Costing $339 million ($152 million to the City).
  • Option 5:  (New five story high school at Cawley Stadium) Costing $336 million ($149 million to the City).
So, for those of you who are incredulous that Option 1 is $344 million, yes those are US Dollars.

The question is, what is a fix up going to cost us?  I am think it has to be less than half that amount and maybe less.  Where are the numbers for that level of effort?  Where is Gerry Nutter when you need him?

Regards  —  Cliff

  I am available and inespensive.

Going Backwards

For John, BLUFThe Draft Bill gives no explanation as to why this additional law and additional administrative burden is needed.  I wonder if Lowell Schools will have to hire an additional Administrator?  Nothing to see here; just move along.

I suspect this is a duplicate blog post, but it is strange proposed law at a time when Asians are being treated in higher education the way the Jews were before the 1960s.

Regards  —  Cliff

There Is No Forgiveness

For John, BLUFWas it a mistake or is everything coming down?  Nothing to see here; just move along.

More catching up.

This is Brietbart and Reporter Penny Starr, 16 August 2017.

Here is the second paragraph:

“The Atlanta march traveled from Woodruff Park to Piedmont Park Sunday, where some damaged the Peace Monument, erected in 1911,” a blog on the Atlanta Journal-Constitution website said.  “The sculpture features an angel standing above a Confederate soldier, guiding him to lay down his weapon.”
On the other hand, perhaps being a Confederate Soldier is like sinning against the Holy Spirit, something that can never be forgiven.  (Matt 12:31)

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

A Pox on Both Sides

For John, BLUFMargaret Sanger like on one side and Benito Mussolini like on the other.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Just catching up.

From Hot Air and Reporter John Sexton, Posted on 16 August 2017.

Yes, this does mean that President Trump was correct.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff


For John, BLUFLet us not apply our moral standards to our forefathers and mothers.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Wikipedia
In literary and historical analysis, presentism is the anachronistic introduction of present-day ideas and perspectives into depictions or interpretations of the past.  Some modern historians seek to avoid presentism in their work because they consider it a form of cultural bias, and believe it creates a distorted understanding of their subject matter.  The practice of presentism is regarded by some as a common fallacy in historical writing.

Regards  —  Cliff

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Welcome Asser Levy

TRIGGER WARNINGS:  No one is safe, once the mob tastes blood.

For John, BLUFWe really should calm down and not let "presentism" warp our historic view.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The New York Post, by Reporters Yoav Gonen and Ruth Brown, on 24 August.

Here is the lede plus two:

Move over Christopher Columbus, it’s Peter Stuyvesant’s turn to get scorched in the monuments war.

A Jewish activist group is now demanding Mayor de Blasio scrub all traces of the anti-Semitic Dutch governor from city property — even Stuyvesant High School — as part of his campaign to rid the city of “symbols or hate.”

“Peter Stuyvesant was an extreme racist who targeted Jews and other minorities including Catholics and energetically tried to prohibit them from settling in then New Amsterdam,” said Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, the head of the Shurat HaDin-Israel Law Center.

He is not wrong about Mr Peter Stuyvesant.

So, they want to replace Governor Peter Stuyvesant with Asser Levy, the first Jew to own a house in North America.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Giving Just This Thin Exception to the Bill of Rights

For John, BLUFYou have to watch Congress like a hawk.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Zero Hedge, by Mr Tyler Durden, 26 August 2017.

Yes, it is pretty obscure, but if it wedges against our Fourth Amendment guarantees it will take the US Supreme Court to take the time and interest to smack it down, and that depending upon someone having the standing and the understanding and money to challenge such warrantless searches.

Hat tip to the Drudge Report.

Regards  —  Cliff

Friday, August 25, 2017

Don't Yell Wolf…

…in a crowded theater.

For John, BLUFI think she is some times befuddled, and that is sad.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Mr David French, 24 August 2017, in The National Review.

The lede plus 0.9.

Yesterday Nancy Pelosi granted an interview to a San Francisco television station, and the first ninety seconds are something to behold.  She repeated her request that the National Park Service deny a permit to an alleged “alt-right demonstration” called Patriot Prayer.  Pelosi said “not allow these elements to use a national park to spew forth their venom.”  She then said that “protecting people” was the Park Service’s “first responsibility.”

When the interviewer, Pam Moore, pressed Pelosi to consider Patriot Prayer’s First Amendment rights, Pelosi responded, “The Constitution does not say that a person can yell wolf in a crowded theater.  If you are endangering people, then you don’t have a constitutional right to do that.”

The article has the link to the full interview.

Here is how the article ends:

In other words, don’t ask Nancy Pelosi about the First Amendment. She has no idea what it means.
Another reason she should not again be the Speaker of the House.

Regards  —  Cliff

Revanchism in Europe

For John, BLUFSome of these hard feelings go back over 500 years, some longer.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Reporter Bridget Johnson, via Pajama Media, 21 August 2017.

It isn't just Admiral Christopher Columbus sailing to new lands in 1492.  That same year, those Europeans stormed the last holdouts on the Iberian Peninsula and displaced the Moors, sending them back to North Africa.  And now, thanks to Daesh, some of the Moorish descendants hope to reclaim those lost territories.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

  Of course they originally came from North Africa and conquered Christian Spain a couple of hundred years before (the Umayyad Caliphate, 711-718 AD).

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Homelessness Gotcha

For John, BLUFMaybe we should invite her to talk about it.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

This is from MassLive, Reporter Shira Schoenberg, 22 August 2017.

Here is the lede plus four:

For a family in Massachusetts to get into an emergency shelter, in many cases they must first spend a night in a car, emergency room, bus station or another place "not meant for human habitation."

"It shocks me to say it out loud," said State Rep. Marjorie Decker, D-Cambridge.  "This is no way for government to even think about dealing with homelessness."

Decker is the primary sponsor of a bill that would change the regulation, which today limits eligibility for emergency shelter to families who have already spent a night homeless.

There are other ways a family can enter a shelter -- for example, if they were a victim of domestic violence, were evicted or suffered a natural disaster.  But for a family to qualify under a rule meant to prevent children from living in unsafe situations, they must have spent a night in an unsafe place.

Decker and other advocates for homeless families say the current policy is inhumane, since it forces families to spend a night in a car or emergency room before they can get into a shelter.  Advocates are pushing for a bill, H.659, that would let families into state-funded shelters if they have no other feasible housing alternative, even if they have not spent a night in an unsafe place.  The families would still have to meet all the other requirements, such as income eligibility.

Human beings living in places, even for one night, not fit for human habitation, so they are qualified for suitable shelter seems a bureaucrat SNAFU.  We can do better.

Hat tip to the MassLive.

Regards  —  Cliff

QUOTE:  "Democracy Dies In Darkness" is not a warning, it's a goal.

For John, BLUFWhen LTC starts to restrict and dictate to City Life we will know we are all in trouble.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

The sub-headline:
WaPo's whole "Oh, Satan. Yes, Satan" pitch does at least make one thing clear..."Democracy Dies In Darkness" is not a warning, it's a goal.
This is from The Daily Wire, Reporter John Norte, 23 August 2017.

Here is the lede:

​Every time you start to believe The Washington Post cannot go any further off the leftwing rails, along comes another sweetheart of lunacy.  Seven days ago, WaPo published an editorial justifying violence against Trump supporters.  If you thought that was some pretty far out stuff, a few days later we were served up with an editorial that openly called for banning conservative speech on campus.
So, the Press wants a new Civil War?  Maybe they think it will sell papers.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

The New Old Math

For John, BLUFOne would think the Math would be settled.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Telegraph, by Science Editor Sarah Knapton, 24 August 2017

The lede plus two:

A 3,700-year-old clay tablet has proven that the Babylonians developed trigonometry 1,500 years before the Greeks and were using a sophisticated method of mathematics which could change how we calculate today.

The tablet, known as Plimpton 332, was discovered in the early 1900s in Southern Iraq by the American archaeologist and diplomat Edgar Banks, who was the inspiration for Indiana Jones.

The true meaning of the tablet has eluded experts until now but new research by the University of New South Wales, Australia, has shown it is the world’s oldest and most accurate trigonometric table, which was probably used by ancient architects to construct temples, palaces and canals.

Hat tip to the Drudge Report.

Regards  —  Cliff

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Only Antifa Grace Will Save You

TRIGGER WARNING:  Even Gandhi isn't good enough.

For John, BLUFNo one is safe.  No one is pure enough.  Jansenism lives.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

This is from Chicks on the Right, which of and in itself ought to be triggering.  The Reporter is Hannah Bleau (Red Dawn) and the dateline is August 22, 2017.

Here is a quote from ESPN over their switch out with Sportscaster Robert Lee:

“We collectively made the decision with Robert to switch games as the tragic events in Charlottesville were unfolding, simply because of the coincidence of his name,” ESPN stated.  “In that moment it felt right to all parties.  It’s a shame that this is even a topic of conversation and we regret that who calls play by play for a football game has become an issue.”
This was interesting.  The ESPN Crowd makes a change because of a name and then thinks it shouldn't even be an issue.  That train left the station when the first ESPN person thought the name Robert Lee would be a problem.

Poor Sportscaster Robert Lee.  He has only his parents and his ancestors to blame for this.

Then there is this, which seems to eclipse the Robert Lee imbroglio:

Almost my whole life Mahatma Gandhi has been a hero, to me and to tens of millions of others.  Now we find he is a racist and triggering:
The statue, which was unveiled by Indian President Pranab Mukherjee during his visit to Ghana in June, was meant to symbolize friendship between the two countries, according to Ghana’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. But professors and students at the University of Ghana called the statue “a slap in the face" because of Gandhi's "racist identity." They started an online petition calling for the statue’s removal.

The petition, which had more than 1,700 supporters on Thursday, cited letters Gandhi wrote during his time in South Africa as evidence that he advocated for the superiority of Indians over black Africans. It also took issue with his use of the derogatory term kaffir to refer to native Africans and criticized the lack of statues of African heroes and heroines on campus.

If Mr Gandhi isn't safe, no one is safe.

The Time Magazine article on Mahatma Gandhi was written by Ms Abigail Abrams, back in October of 2016, and thus was overshadowed by campaigning in the weeks before the election that made Ms Hillary Clinton Mr Trump President, so we missed it.

Meanwhile, Blogger Jim Treacher points out that "James T. Hodgkinson, Attempted Assassin Of [Congressman] Steve Scalise, Already Being Erased From History".

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

DWS and Imran Awan

For John, BLUFIs the "Russian" hacking of the DNC just a cover for deeper stuff?  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Stuff you have probably never heard of.

Some speculation and some links from Law Professor Glenn Harlan Reynolds.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

No Compromise

For John, BLUFAgree or be shunned.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From National Review, by Reporter Elliot Kaufman, 21 August 2017.

In which the writer goes after Old Gray Lady Opinionator Lindy West.  Apparently, compromise is something you do, not something she does.

It appears there is no place for Conservatives in the future.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Identifying the Target

For John, BLUFLaw Prof Glenn Reynolds notes "Going around punching people, even strenuously bad people, just because you disagree with them, is kinda fascist."  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Salon and Reporter Matthew Sheffield, on 21 August 2017, with examples.

Apparently, if the Antifa take a dislike to you, you are thereby identified as a Klansman or a National Socialist.  Sort of like the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC).

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Monday, August 21, 2017

A Defense of the Antifa

For John, BLUFCure worse than the disease.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

This Opinion Piece in 16 August 2017 edition of the The Washington Post is by Dartmouth College history lecturer Mark Bray (He has a forthcoming book, Antifa: The Anti-Fascist Handbook).

Here is the sub-headline:

President Trump equated them with white supremacists.  Here's why he’s wrong.
Professor Bray then goes on to show why President Trump is correct.

For a start, why do we think people in masks represent the good guys?  When I was growing up it was the bad guys who worse the masks.  But let us look further.

Its adherents are predominantly communists, socialists and anarchists who reject turning to the police or the state to halt the advance of white supremacy.
Lets parse that:
  • From my understanding of history, Communists are folks who enforce their socio-economic faith on others by force, killing millions, killing more than even Fascists.
  • Socialists may well be a peaceful political crowd, as in much of Europe, but it is the extremism of Socialism (for instance, Communism and National Socialism) that give us problems.
  • Anarchists, as I remember from school, tend to be violent and to prefer "propaganda of the deed".  They are associated with murders, including bombings, sort of like Daesh, today.
But, surely they are fighting evil?  However, what do they offer in the long run?  As we see above, evil.

Backt to writer Bray:

The vast majority of anti-fascist organizing is nonviolent.  But their willingness to physically defend themselves and others from white supremacist violence and preemptively shut down fascist organizing efforts before they turn deadly distinguishes them from liberal anti-racists.
I say an EMail this morning talking about North Korea and addressing its nuclear capabilities in terms of "preemption" and "preventive war".  The EMail writer was distinguishing between the two, arguing that one would be justified, but not the other.  Is Mr Bray really saying "preemption" or is he saying "preventive"?  I doubt he knows.

Then there is this:

Antifascists argue that after the horrors of chattel slavery and the Holocaust, physical violence against white supremacists is both ethically justifiable and strategically effective.  We should not, they argue, abstractly assess the ethical status of violence in the absence of the values and context behind it.  Instead, they put forth an ethically consistent, historically informed argument for fighting Nazis before it’s too late.
I am with Mr Bray on the horrors of chattel slavery, which is worse than indentured servitude, which some of my predecessors experienced coming to the new world.  However, chattel slavery has been around for a while.  How else do you think the pyramids were built?

However, Mr Bray does not talk about if we should intervene in slavery in other parts of the world today.  That is an important question.  Slavery is today a multi-billion dollar business.  Should Daesh enslavement of Yazidis, particularly Yazidi women, be met with military action?  Should it be met with action by the Antifa?

An ethically consistent argument for violence would include the suppression of those who would advocate one of the worst forms of slavery, Communism.

This is all rubbish.

Well, it is also evil as virtue signaling.

Worst of all President Trump was correct.

Don't get me wrong.  Fascism is to be resisted.  It is just that the antidote being offered is worse than the cure.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

  I would say Preemption is if someone is winding up to throw a punch, but prevention is if they are walking down the street, but might throw a punch.

Minimum Wage in Canada

For John, BLUFDoing bad while doing good.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Canadian Press, 16 August 2017.

Metro being a food chain up in Canada.

Here is the first part of the article:

MONTREAL—Ontario’s third-largest grocery chain will accelerate its study of automation as it looks to cut costs to offset the provincial government’s plan to raise the minimum wage next year, the CEO of Metro Inc. said on Aug. 15.

Eric La Fleche said the industry is under the gun because there is little time to adjust to cost increases, especially when intensifying competition is straining margins.

Metro estimates an increase in the Ontario minimum wage to $14 per hour from the current rate of $11.40 will cost it about $45 million to $50 million on an annualized basis in 2018.&nbSp; The impact excludes any pressure to subsequently increase other salaries.

“It’s the pace that makes it a pretty big challenge, but we’re confident that we’ll find some offsets on our own,” La Fleche said during a conference call about its third-quarter results.

The chain said it hasn’t calculated the full impact when the minimum wage rises to $15 an hour in January 2019.

“As a team we will strive to mitigate this impact as much as we possibly can through productivity and cost reduction initiatives, but the size and pace of these increases pose a significant challenge,” La Fleche told analysts.

Does a minimum wage help or hurt workers as a whole?  I think it helps those who have jobs, but to the degree it encourages automation it leads to a lower Labor Participation Rate.

Regards  —  Cliff

Saturday, August 19, 2017

The Globe Leans Left

For John, BLUFIt appears The Boston Globle is part of the Ctrl Left.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Regards  —  Cliff

IRS Still Stiff Arming Justice and Conservative Political Action Committees

For John, BLUFCongress could impeach IRS Commissioner John Koskinen.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Tax Law Prof Paul L Caron is back with a new post at his Blog.  Dateline is 19 Aug 2017.

A federal judge on Thursday ordered the IRS to name the specific employees the agency blames for targeting tea party groups for intrusive scrutiny and said the government must prove it has ceased the targeting.

Judge Reggie B. Walton also said the IRS must explain the reasons for the delays for 38 groups that are part of a lawsuit in the District of Columbia, where they are still looking for a full accounting of their treatment.

Incidentally, the Judge is this case is Judge Reggie B. Walton, formerly Presiding Judge of the FISA Court.  It is said that one day in 2005, driving with his family to the airport, he saw an assailant beating a cab driver and stopped and subdued the assailant until the police arrive.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Who is the Final Target

For John, BLUFThe author started out a Never-Trumper.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

The author, Rev W. B. Allen, is Emeritus Professor of Political Philosophy at Michigan State University and a Pastor at First Baptist Church, Havre de Grace, MD, USA.  I have had dinner, with Martha, in Harve de Grace.  This is datelined 17 August 2017.

My thought is that we have cobbled together a pretty good country.  People are willing to break laws to come here and live.  But, if it is torn down, then what is left?  Venezuela?  And where will people then go?

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Selling the Senator

For John, BLUFActually, I am not buying there.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From National Review and Reporter Elliot Kaufman, back on 16 August 2017.

Apparently our Senior Senator here in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is a little Amazon of items for sale.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Friday, August 18, 2017

Old Gray Lady Sees The Light

For John, BLUFNice to see The NYT moving to the center.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Law Professor Ann Althouse, today:
Said Emily Rose Nauert, "a 20-year-old antifa member who became a symbol of the movement in April when a white nationalist leader punched her in the face during a melee near the University of California, Berkeley," quoted in the NYT in "‘Antifa’ Grows as Left-Wing Faction Set to, Literally, Fight the Far Right."
Antifa adherents — some armed with sticks and masked in bandannas — played a visible role in the running street battles in Charlottesville, but it is impossible to know how many people count themselves as members of the movement. Its followers acknowledge it is secretive, without official leaders and organized into autonomous local cells. It is also only one in a constellation of activist movements that have come together in the past several months to the fight the far right....
Here is the conclusion:
Now, Trump never said "the 2 sides are equivalent." He didn't say "equivalent" and he didn't even say "2 sides." He said "We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides." But those who were pushing the "false equivalence" idea needed to rely on the idea that one side is bad and the other is good, and they needed to minimize antifa. Now, the NYT admits the left has a violence problem. Good!
The whole thing is worth the couple of minutes needed to read it.

Hat tip to Ann Althouse.

Regards  —  Cliff

The Never Ending Investigation

For John, BLUF"Show me the man and I’ll find you the crime"—Lavrentiy Pavlovich Beria.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

It is Reuters, and Reporter Karen Freifeld, today, 18 August 2017. Here is the lede plus three:

(Reuters) - The White House lawyer brought in to deal with special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election said he believed the focus of the probe was "narrow" and the aspects related to President Donald Trump should be completed before the end of the year.

The lawyer, Ty Cobb, who joined the White House staff on July 31, made the comments in interviews with Reuters on Tuesday and Wednesday.  He declined to provide specifics backing his outlook, which contradicts media reports that the scope of Mueller’s probe is expanding and the views of several outside experts that the investigation is likely to continue well into 2018.

"I'd like to see the president out from under this by Thanksgiving, but certainly by year end," Cobb said, adding that he would be "embarrassed" otherwise.  "I think the relevant areas of inquiry by the special counsel are narrow."

Mueller is investigating possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, among other matters. Moscow has denied interfering in the election and the president has denied collusion took place.

I will be pleased if Lawyer Ty Cobb is correct, but I am thinking this probe will go on for ever, or until Mr Mueller retires, a Democrat is elected President or we experience the Apocalypse.  Not necessarily in that order.  And note that the Rapture won't end it.  The Parousia would do the trick.

Hat tip to the Drudge Report.

Regards  —  Cliff

Iconoclasm Without End

For John, BLUFAfter they are done with the statues they will be coming for the living.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

It is The Daily Caller and Jim Treacher, 18 August 2017, responding to the attack on a statue of Abraham Lincoln in Chicago (his home state).

It seems very strange to destroy a statue of Abraham Lincoln because you’re angry about Confederate monuments.  But then, I didn’t go to Chicago schools.
Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Afraid to Name the Problem

For John, BLUFI blame Bush.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

BY BRUCE BAWER AUGUST 17, 2017 The article starts with a review of a Cole Porter standard, "Let's not talk about love" and then looks at what happened in Barcelona, but mostly how it was reported.

Here is the concluding paragraph:

It was all utterly vapid nonsense.  Context was virtually nowhere in evidence.  Denial was everywhere.  The cliché about not seeing the forest for the trees was never more apropos.  The more these things happen,  it seems, the more skilled the mainstream media have become in attending to the grisly details – and thus spiking their ratings – while doing their best to look away, as much as possible, from the atrocities' ideological roots.  From, in short, that fount of violence known as Islam, which has only just begun its violent assault on the civilized world.
Let us review the first sentence:
It was all utterly vapid nonsense.
There is a word I haven't heard recently—vapid.  Perfect.

If we don't do the needed analysis one of two things are going to happen.  On the one hand Jihadi terrorism may just fade away.  While possible, this is not likely.  Even as Daesh is being squeezed out of Iraq and Syria it is continuing on in the minds of its religious adherent.

The other possibility is that as Daesh is squeezed out of Iraq and Syria it moves elsewhere, in small cells, creating devastation in its wake, disrupting stable democracies and fragile states alike.  That will not end well.

The sooner we name our problem the better.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Barcelona and Charlottesville

For John, BLUFThere is a theme and if the facts don't follow the theme the facts are ignored.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

The source is Pajama Media and author Roger L Simon, on 17 August 2017.

Here is the lede plus one:

Within minutes of the announcement of the vehicular terror attack in Barcelona, Jim Sciutto and Wolf Blitzer of CNN were opining that the horrifying events in Spain may have been inspired by (i.e. were a copycat of) Charlottesville.  The implications of this comparison are not only wrong-headed, they are reactionary and dangerous to the American public and the world.

And this is for even more important reasons than the fact that Barcelona was a catastrophic attack with, as of this writing, 13 dead and over 100 wounded, many seriously.  (Coordinated attacks were apparently attempted in other parts of Catalonia.)

Yes, what were Reporters Wolf Blitzer and Jim Sciutto thinking?  Perhaps the urge to be first overpowered the urge to be correct.  It is not the CNN of the 1980s, which I remember fondly.  How could they possibly draw the connection?  This appears to be politics over analysis and reporting.  Shame.

And, of course, it is the media and the Bien-Pensant minimizing the involvement of Islam and in particular radical Islam with a bent toward killing the infidels or enslaving them—the Yazidis, the Jews, the Christians and the Muslims who don't believe the way Daesh and al Qaeda believe.  If we ignore this long enough we will disappear under a wave of terror.

Here is a key paragraph out of Mr Simon's piece:

Not only that, a significant percentage of the left evinces sympathy for Islamic radicals, identifying with them and justifying their cause, despite the obvious misogyny and homophobia, through such latter-day crypto-fascist inventions as "intersectionality."  The Antifa movement, in the forefront of that nauseating sympathy for Islamism, is far more prevalent and dangerous in U.S. society than those few pathetic remaining losers in the KKK and similar neo-Nazi groups.  The Antifa thugs are seemingly everywhere, smashing windows and making life Hell for weak-willed university administrators across the country.
Exactly.  We are worried about a few meatheads who identify with the Klan or the National Socialists and forget the Fascists who believe they are anti-fascist, going by the name Antifa, while carry Soviet Flags and allegiance to Communism, Socialism and Anarchism.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff


For John, BLUFWe need a dose of politeness.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The American Mirror and Reporter Kyle Olson, 18 Aug 2017.

Hat tip to the Drudge Report.

Regards  —  Cliff

Another Denier Heard From

For John, BLUFI want to know the engineering costs of climate change.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From My News LA and Reporter Ken Stone, on 17 Aug 2017.

And on it goes.

Hat tip to the Drudge Report.

Regards  —  Cliff

Thursday, August 17, 2017

ACLU States the Obvious

For John, BLUFOut of cowardice.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From the Eugene Volokh blog, The Volokh Conspiricy, in The Washington Post, 16 August 2017.

This from the three California Chapters of the American Civil Liberties Union.

Want to know what happened?  The President tried to maintain a level hand and got creamed.

UPDATE:  From The LA Times.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Environment:  President and Pope

For John, BLUFDarn, we have to think.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Dr Michael Pakaluk, professor of philosophy at Catholic University of America, in the Boston Pilot, 9 June 2017 (playing catchup here).

The question and sub-headline:

How should a Catholic view President Trump's decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Accord? Was it a "slap in the face" to the Vatican, as Bishop Marcelo Sanchez Sorondo claimed?  After all, Pope Francis had timed the publication of his encyclical, "Laudato Si", "On the Care for our Common Home," so that it would appear in time for the Paris meeting, to support that accord.
Here is how the Professor starts out:
First, as a general rule, the laity have primary responsibility for the temporal sphere. I'm not saying this of my own accord. It is the teaching of the magisterium of the Church in the Second Vatican Council: "The laity must take up the renewal of the temporal order as their own special obligation" (Decree on Lay Apostolate, n. 7). The typical role of pastors in contrast is to teach general principles: "Pastors must clearly state the principles concerning the purpose of creation and the use of temporal things," (ibid.).

Thus there is a complementarity characteristic of any peaceful social order: pastors state general principles in matters of faith and morals, but then leave it to the laity, in freedom, to use their judgment in particular applications. The laity can rightly claim freedom to apply principles by their own lights with goodwill.

I leave it to you to read and share.

Regards  —  Cliff

Crime Cults in Mexico

For John, BLUFThis will like spread, as has the Gang MS13, to our area.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

This is from The Epoch Times, by Reporter Joshua Philipp, 17 August 2017.

Here is the lede plus three:

Drug cartels and street gangs in Mexico are creating their own religions and altering beliefs in existing Catholic saints, in a move to create a new “narcoculture” that tries to morally justify crime and violence.

Some of these new figures of worship are existing Catholic saints, most of which have had their meaning altered for the narcoculture. Some are pulled from Aztec gods worshipped through human sacrifice, while others are new creations altogether.

The two most popular figures of worship in Mexico are products of this new narcoculture. The most popular is St. Jude Thaddeus, also called “Saint Judas,” while the second most popular is a newly created folk saint called Santa Muerte, “Saint Death.”

What is taking place in Mexico is a form of “spiritual appropriation,” whereby the existing religion is being altered to justify a criminal insurgency, according to Robert J. Bunker, adjunct research professor at the Strategic Studies Institute at U.S. Army War College.

This interview is based on the 2016 book, Blood Sacrifices.

Regards  —  Cliff

Media Tumbles to Ctrl-Left Violence

For John, BLUFReturning to their senses.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Hot Air and Writer John Sexton, 16 August 2017.

Just for the record.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Violent Demonstrations

TRIGGER WARNING:  In which I suggests there is thuggishness on the left.

For John, BLUFThen there is the aphorism:  "First reports are always wrong".  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Ace of Spades, 16 Aug 2017.

Here is the tweet that triggered Ace's ire:

Senator Tim Kaine
Charlottesville violence was fueled by one side: white supremacists spreading racism, intolerance & intimidation. Those are the facts.
Turns out his son was arrested, a couple of months ago, while being violent on the other side, the Ctrl-Left.

To be clear, the Klan and the National Socialists are not operating in the spirit of the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution, except under the First Amendment.  But, then, neither are those on the Ctrl-Left, wearing masks while trying to intimidate those with repugnant ideas, yet who are exercising their Free Speech Rights.

In the end this will get rinsed away.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

American Iconoclasts

For John, BLUFPulling down statues is not higher level politics.  It is more like Fascism.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Once upon a time there were two statues of Buddha in Bamiyan, Afghanistan.  But, Iconoclasts destroyed them in March of 2001.  Who were those iconoclasts?  The Taliban, operating under the orders of their leader Mullah Mohammed Omar.  They (the Taliban) were offended.

Here is the Introductory paragraph from Wikipedia:

The Buddhas of Bamiyan (Persian: بت های باميان – bott-hâye Bāmiyān) were 4th- and 5th-century monumental statues of standing buddha carved into the side of a cliff in the Bamyan valley in the Hazarajat region of central Afghanistan, 230 kilometres (140 mi) northwest of Kabul at an elevation of 2,500 metres (8,200 ft).  Built in 507 CE (smaller) and 554 CE (larger), the statues represented the classic blended style of Gandhara art.  They were 35 and 53 meters tall, respectively.
Here are the before and after (March of 2001) photos for the larger Buddha:

Don't be an iconoclast.  Be a story teller.  What does the statue mean to you, to your friends, to the nation?  What should we learn about our collective history from the statue?

Don't be like the Taliban.  Remember, after this their sanctioned terrorist friends (Al Qaeda) took down the twin towers of the World Trade Center on 11 September of the same year.

Hat tip to The Burning Platform for the picture.

Regards  —  Cliff

  There is always the problem that some people just don't know when to stop.

Tax Scandal From Last Administration

For John, BLUFYes, and the IRS rehired 213 employees ousted for doing bad things.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From 15 August 2017, from the TaxProfBlog we have Mr Paul Caron checking on things.

The 1559 Days is about four and a quarter years.

And the wheels of justice keep turning, slowly.

Why can't Uncle Sugar just admit he screwed up and make it right?

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Mussolini on Fascism

TRIGGER WARNINGS:  It may turn out you are a Fascist.
For John, BLUFJust read the highlighted sections.  Easy-peasy.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

The Doctrine Of Fascism
Benito Mussolini
Paper Cover:  28 Pages (A Kindle version is available)
Publisher:  CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Language:  English
ISBN:  978-1478370918
Copyright:  August 6, 2012

I read, a few years ago, a longer version of Il Duce's book on Fascism.  This shorter version seems to track very closely with the longer version.

It is a short, quick read, although there are some historic references, which would make the Kindle version handy (and cheaper).

Remember, this was written in the first half of the last Century, but these are the concluding two paragraphs:

Never more than at the present moment have the nations felt such a thirst for an authority, for a direction, for order.  If every century has its own peculiar doctrine, there are a thousand indications that Fascism is that of the present century.  That it is a doctrine of life is shown by the fact that it has created a faith; that the faith has taken possess of the mind is demonstrated by the fact that Fascism has had its Fallen and its martyrs.

Fascism has now attained ini the world an universality over all doctrines.  Being realized, it represents an epoch in the history of the human mind.

Regards  —  Cliff

Monday, August 14, 2017

Holy Day of Obligation

For John, BLUFBe there or be square.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

In my Parish Cluster

  • 0730 Immaculate
  • 1800 Holy Trinity Polish Church on High Street
  • 1830 Saint Anthony's Portuguese Church on Central Street
Regards  —  Cliff

Small Differences

For John, BLUFI am blaming bad potty training.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Facebook and Poster Brendan O'Neill, early this morning, Monday, 14 August 2017.

The InstaPundit quotes this part:
It’s becoming so clear now why the war of words between SJWs and the new white nationalists is so intense. It isn’t because they have huge ideological differences — it's because they have so much in common.
It sort of reminds me of the quip attributed variously to Samnual Johnson or Henry Kissinger:
Academic Politics Are So Vicious Because the Stakes Are So Small
Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Some Healing

For John, BLUFExtraordinary grace.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Posted to Hot Air by Blogger Ed Morrissey, the late afternoon of 14 August 2017.

The lede:

Susan Bro provided a moment of extraordinary grace as she mourns the murder of her daughter, Heather Heyer, by trying to heal the divide in the nation after the Charlottesville terrorist attack.  While the political debate over Donald Trump’s responses to the violence continues, Bro reached out to thank Trump for his latest statement, which Bro describes as a “comfort.”
Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Sunday, August 13, 2017

The Election Behind Us

For John, BLUFIt would be nice for the adults to step up, but even the adults are being childish.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

This is from Pajama Media writer Mr Charlie Martin, Sunday, 13 August 2017.
Donald J Trump is president.  Really.  He won it fair and square, he was inaugurated seven — almost eight — months ago, and he very probably is going to be president for another three and a half years.


The Democrats need some new policies and inclusion.

The Republicans need to execute on their promises.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Giving in to the Hecklers

For John, BLUFWe need to support the free speech of those with whom we disagree.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Pajama Media and Commentor Michael Walsh, 13 August 2017.

Here us the lede plus on:

My friend Dennis Prager, the radio talk-show-host, is conducting the Santa Monica Symphony in a Haydn symphony this Wednesday at Disney Hall in downtown Los Angeles, and, of course, his appearance has "drawn fire" and "raised controversy" in the fever swamps of the Left, which is freaking out at the prospect of having a "bigot" on the podium.  Anyone who knows Dennis, or who even listens to his daily radio show on the Salem Network, understands this is codswallop.  Prager is an observant Jew and a man who has spoken and written extensively on the moral issues of our day.  His bona fides as a public intellectual are impeccable.

And yet...

I worry that the lines of descent are being drawn too closely and the heckler's veto is being tolerated more and more.  If we can't explore alternative ideas we will become another toltalitarian nation, be it Communist or Fascist.  If we approach the point where people worry about "not being the first to stop applauding", for fear of drawing attention to themselves, our Democracy will be in serious trouble.  We will become like Soviet Russia or Nazi Germany or Communist China or Kim's Korea.

All the little "Antifas" running around are Fascist in their mentality and approach.  They seem not to realize that no one can survive the lens of history.  There will be no heroes of the past.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Saturday, August 12, 2017


For John, BLUFSuppressing unpopular opinions is dangerous to democracy, because the "approved" views are not always right.  Remember, Margaret Sanger believed in Eugenics and Woodrow Wilson in Segregation.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

This is a long post, by Writer Ed Driscoll, with lots of Links and Excerpts.  He put it up late last night, around 11:44.  This is only part of it.

THE GOOGLE ARCHIPELAGO:  In an article at the Weekly Standard that was likely written before Google’s meltdown this week headlined, “You Can’t Say That,” a review of the recent book The Demon in Democracy, Matthew B. Crawford asks, “Has liberalism taken a Soviet turn?”
He then looked at an item from Mr James D Miller, Get ready for the 'tech alt-right' to gain power and influence in Silicon Valley, on 9 August 2017.

The firing of James Damore over his “Google's Ideological Echo Chamber” memo will empower the tech alt-right.

To understand why, imagine yourself as a Republican working at a big Silicon Valley tech company.

You agree with Damore that some average differences between men and women probably explain some of why such a high proportion of computer programmers are male.  You, however, in no way consider yourself sexist.

What Damore’s termination tells you is that many in your field consider people with your beliefs to be unfit to work with.  They hold opinions of you similar to those of former senior Google employee Yonatan Zunger, who wrote about Damore, saying:

“Do you understand that at this point, I could not in good conscience assign anyone to work with you?  I certainly couldn’t assign any women to deal with this, a good number of the people you might have to work with may simply punch you in the face, and even if there were a group of like-minded individuals I could put you with, nobody would be able to collaborate with them.” (Emphasis mine.)
If you are on the right, you probably find it hard to imagine that any reasonably person could read Damore’s memo and think that it reveals the author to be sexist, punchable, or a danger to women’s careers.  It appears to you that Damore was excommunicated for questioning the progressive diversity narrative in a most respectful manner.
Here is a scary quote from the article:
When SJWs in Silicon Valley realize that their ideological enemies are hiding, they might actively search them out.  They might become suspicious of the guy who was the first to stop clapping when a new diversity initiative was announced.  Even worse, SWJs in human resources might become reluctant to hire those with characteristics correlated with conservatism, such as past military service.
Then Mr Driscoll makes a connection:
That line about SJWs becoming suspicious about “the guy who was the first to stop clapping when a new diversity initiative was announced” is Straight Outta the Kremlin, comrade.  In The Gulag Archipelago, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn wrote of the fate of the man who stopped clapping first:
At the conclusion of the conference, a tribute to Comrade Stalin was called for.  Of course, everyone stood up (just as everyone had leaped to his feet during the conference at every mention of his name). … For three minutes, four minutes, five minutes, the stormy applause, rising to an ovation, continued.  But palms were getting sore and raised arms were already aching. And the older people were panting from exhaustion.  It was becoming insufferably silly even to those who really adored Stalin.

However, who would dare to be the first to stop? … After all, NKVD men were standing in the hall applauding and watching to see who would quit first!  And in the obscure, small hall, unknown to the leader, the applause went on – six, seven, eight minutes!  They were done for!  Their goose was cooked!  They couldn’t stop now till they collapsed with heart attacks!  At the rear of the hall, which was crowded, they could of course cheat a bit, clap less frequently, less vigorously, not so eagerly – but up there with the presidium where everyone could see them?

* * * * * * * *

Then, after eleven minutes, the director of the paper factory assumed a businesslike expression and sat down in his seat.  And, oh, a miracle took place!  Where had the universal, uninhibited, indescribable enthusiasm gone?  To a man, everyone else stopped dead and sat down.  They had been saved!

The squirrel had been smart enough to jump off his revolving wheel.  That, however, was how they discovered who the independent people were.  And that was how they went about eliminating them.  That same night the factory director was arrested.  They easily pasted ten years on him on the pretext of something quite different.  But after he had signed Form 206, the final document of the interrogation, his interrogator reminded him:

“Don’t ever be the first to stop applauding.”

Then Mr Driscoll rings in a Post at The American Conservative by Mr Rod Dreher, on 11 August, that talks to Google’s Hypocrisy On Gender

At the conclusion of a post today on the hypocrisy of Google firing Damore over his memo but making billions off of gender-based data-mining and targeted advertising code, Rod Dreher links to [this] a scene from the 2006 film on the East German Stasi, The Lives of Others:


If someone asks you why, in the 1930s and early 1940s, the Germans did nothing, said nothing, remember that Soviet Citizen who was the first to stop clapping.

And then remember that a little deviant thinking is a good thing.  They may be wrong, they may be cuckoo, but their existence, in public, means that you too are free to have divergent thinking.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Chicken Rampant

For John, BLUFOne advantage Trump followers have is a sense of humor.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

A photo essay by Reporter Charlie Spiering on 11 August 2017, in the dreaded Breitbart.

After liberal protesters set up a 30-foot inflatable chicken outside the White House, President Trump’s supporters joyfully appropriated the image for their memes.

On Reddit, Trump fans rendered the chicken into meme-worthy images, setting free a torrent of pro-Trump chicken memes.

And here is an example from the collection:

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Friday, August 11, 2017

The Now and Future Democrats

For John, BLUFThe "Liberals" need to focus on Citizenship as a unifying theme, not their individual identities.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the Sub-headline:
Liberals should reject the divisive, zero-sum politics of identity and find their way back to a unifying vision of the common good
I found this 11 August 2017 Wall Street Journal article on Drudge and believe the author, Dr. Mark Lilla, professor of the humanities at Columbia University, is spot on. It is a little long, but it is insightful.

And, it talks about what might prevent Democrats from winning the House and Senate in 2018.

I wonder if the Democrats are hoping that there will be some cataclysmic event, brought on by Donald Trump, that will allow them to say (1) see, I told you so, and (2) vote for us because we are all calm middle of the road people (Maxine Waters, Nancy Pelosi, DWS, Chuck Schumer and Conn's Senator Richard Blumenthal aside).

I am thinking 2018 should be an interesting year, locally and nationally.

Hat tip to the Drudge Report.

Regards  —  Cliff

Government Employees as Fifth Estate

For John, BLUFShould Government Employees get a veto?  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Hill, by Reporter Deven Henry, 5 August 2017.

The lede plus five:

Government employees are growing increasingly willing to criticize or defy the White House and President Trump’s top appointees.

A handful of current and former career staffers in the Interior Department and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have openly shredded their superiors within the last several weeks, continuing a trend that has developed throughout the government over the course of aTrump’s tenure in the Oval Office.

The growing opposition in the executive branch comes as the White House’s legislative agenda has stalled in Congress and Trump turns to his Cabinet agencies to change course in several policy areas.  It also is emanating from career staffers or political holdovers whose resistance to Trump has, at times, been rooted in deep opposition to the president’s agenda.

“From our point of view, it’s kind of obvious,” said Jeff Ruch, the executive director of Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER), when asked about staffers’ growing pushback.

“You have Donald Trump, who ran and said he would drain the swamp, meaning them.”

Trump’s allies have often cast the president as the victim of the “deep state,” an entrenched liberal bureaucracy bent on damaging his agenda through leaks and resistance.

Hat tip to the Drudge Report.

Regards  —  Cliff

585,000 [Good] Signatures

For John, BLUFNot since 1860 and South Carolina have we seen such a move.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

"...we disregard what the United States thinks ..."
Shankar Singram, Vice President, California Freedom Coalition
This is from Reporter Randy DeSoto, of Western Journalism, 2 August 2017.

Is this all about Trump?

I really don't think they are joining the United Mexican States as an alternative.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Down the Rabbit Hole

For John, BLUFPeople like this could get us in trouble.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Since this OpEd is from Nation of Change, a decidedly Progressive publication (Mr Derek Royden, author, published 6 August 2017), the "Dangerous Provocations" are not from North Korea, but from us here in the US.

So, Virginia, there really are people out there who think that we are the evil aggressors and poor Kim Jung-un, bless his little heart, is really an innocent democrat, being thwarted at every turn by the evil Americans.

What can I say?

Regards  —  Cliff

Bringing Back a Downtown

For John, BLUFI am worried about our downtown.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

This is from Mass Live and from Reporter Gintautas Dumcius, on 9 August 2017.

The location is Hudson, Massachusetts:

Located on the western edge of Middlesex County and off Interstate 495, Hudson is surrounded by Stow, Bolton, Berlin, Clinton, Marlborough and Sudbury.  The late Gov. Paul Cellucci is among its most famous sons.
Hat tip to the Althouse blog.

Regards  —  Cliff

Don't Trust Science

For John, BLUFBesides, engineering is more reliable than science.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From the Ann Althouse Blog, today, 10 August 2017.

Here is Professor Althouse's Comment:

You need to go read the first paragraph at Slate to see how horribly Prescod-Weinstein summarizes what James Damore wrote.  Scientists are untrustworthy, she argues and, simultaneously, demonstrates.
Hat tip to the Althouse blog.

Regards  —  Cliff

DNC Non-Hack

For John, BLUFInteresting look at events last year..  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Former NSA experts say it wasn’t a hack at all, but a leak—an inside job by someone with access to the DNC’s system.
This was published yesterday, 9 August 2017, in The Nation by Mr Patrick Lawrence.

Not everyone thinks it was the Russians who spilled the beans at the DNC.  Here is a view from what is an acknowledged Progressive source, The Nation.

Here is the start:

It is now a year since the Democratic National Committee’s mail system was compromised—a year since events in the spring and early summer of 2016 were identified as remote hacks and, in short order, attributed to Russians acting in behalf of Donald Trump.  A great edifice has been erected during this time.  President Trump, members of his family, and numerous people around him stand accused of various corruptions and extensive collusion with Russians.  Half a dozen simultaneous investigations proceed into these matters.  Last week news broke that Special Counsel Robert Mueller had convened a grand jury, which issued its first subpoenas on August 3.  Allegations of treason are common; prominent political figures and many media cultivate a case for impeachment.

The president’s ability to conduct foreign policy, notably but not only with regard to Russia, is now crippled.  Forced into a corner and having no choice, Trump just signed legislation imposing severe new sanctions on Russia and European companies working with it on pipeline projects vital to Russia’s energy sector.  Striking this close to the core of another nation’s economy is customarily considered an act of war, we must not forget.  In retaliation, Moscow has announced that the United States must cut its embassy staff by roughly two-thirds.  All sides agree that relations between the United States and Russia are now as fragile as they were during some of the Cold War’s worst moments.  To suggest that military conflict between two nuclear powers inches ever closer can no longer be dismissed as hyperbole.

All this was set in motion when the DNC’s mail server was first violated in the spring of 2016 and by subsequent assertions that Russians were behind that “hack” and another such operation, also described as a Russian hack, on July 5.  These are the foundation stones of the edifice just outlined.  The evolution of public discourse in the year since is worthy of scholarly study:  Possibilities became allegations, and these became probabilities.  Then the probabilities turned into certainties, and these evolved into what are now taken to be established truths.  By my reckoning, it required a few days to a few weeks to advance from each of these stages to the next.  This was accomplished via the indefensibly corrupt manipulations of language repeated incessantly in our leading media.

Hat tip to the Rob Eno.

Regards  —  Cliff

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Another Honor for BHO

For John, BLUFNot unreasonable, considering it is Illinois and the President broke some previous barriers.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

This is from NBC Chicago and Reporter Shelby Bremer.

No offices will shut down, but his adoptive state is recognizing the 44th President.

This idea was launched by State Senator Emil Jones III, the son of former the former State Senate President of the same name, who was an early supporter of President Obama.

To provide some prospective,

"Barack Obama Day" joins other commemorative holidays like Adlai Stevenson Day, Ronald Reagan Day and Jane Addams Day, for which workplaces do not close.
Remember, 4 August 2018, and every year thereafter.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

You Will Be Saved From Yourself

For John, BLUFGoogle hires only 0.2 of all job applicants.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Babylon Bee, Tuesday, 8 August 2017.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Goodbye Golden State?

For John, BLUFI wouldn't like another socialist state on our border..  Nothing to see here; just move along.

If they want to leave so bad, go ahead, let ’em
From Opinionaiter Tom Shattuck, The Boston Herald, 3 August 2017, Thursday last.

California could secede from the United States.  Signatures are being hurriedly gathered for a 2018 ballot initiative that would begin the process of independence for the Golden State.

Awesome.  Break a leg.  I wholeheartedly endorse “#Calexit” and here’s why you should too.

Read the article for Mr Shattuck's reasons.

As for myself, I would be sad to see California go.

For those who think that it will never happen, I say that there are a lot of things that will never happen until they do.

For those who think that we, as individuals, can do nothing, I ask if they even bothered to write a note to their Representative (Niki Tsongas) or Senators (E Warren and Ed Markey)?

Regards  —  Cliff

As Predicted

For John, BLUFBy Gerry Nutter.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

This is The [Lowell] Sun, Reporter Aaron Curtis, Tuesday, 8 August 2017.

Here is the key paragraph:

It was revealed during a School [Financial Sub-]Committee meeting Monday night that despite different specifications, NRT remained the only bidder for the contract.  The difference is the new bid from the company is asking for $134,000 more for their service and will be using older buses, according to School Business Administrator Gary Frisch.
And here is the quick background:
The School Committee approved the three-year contract in May.  However, a review of the contract by City Solicitor Christine O'Connor led to the determination that, as the contract was written, only NRT would bid.
And School Committee Candidate Gerry Nutter takes a victory lap, as is appropriate.

Regards  —  Cliff

Monday, August 7, 2017

Rules Are Ignored by Criminals

For John, BLUFFollowing the rules is what separates good citizens from criminals.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From the Bearing Arms Blog. by Mr Tom Knighton, 5 August 2017.

In many locations, like Chicago, it is hard for law abiding citizens to legally obtain a gun, but for felons, who are barred from owning a weapon, there is no impediment to their getting a weapon.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff