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Saturday, June 30, 2018

Mexico Presidential Election Tomorrow

For John, BLUFThey don'r seem much more unified than we are.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From News Trust, by Reporter David Alire Garcia and Berengere Sim, 30 June 2018.

Here is the lede plus five:

Mexican voters will stream to the polls this Sunday in a pivotal presidential contest, but leaders representing tens of thousands of indigenous people have vowed to block voting in their communities to protest a system they say has failed them.

Polls say Mexico is on the verge of electing its first leftist anti-establishment president in modern history, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador. But the prospect of change has failed to resonate with inhabitants of small towns nestled in the lush, wooded countryside of southwestern Michoacan state.

Residents here have destroyed campaign signs and set up blockades to prevent the government from delivering ballots. Election officials have declared 16 towns here "unviable," and will not likely risk confrontation to force polling stations to open.

Among the no-go zones is the impoverished hamlet of Nahuatzen, where Purepecha indigenous locals grow avocados and eke out a living on tiny plots. On Thursday, several dozen men, some in cowboy hats, stood vigil near the town's entrance. They had laid a tree trunk across the road to stop outsiders from entering.

"The politicians haven't done anything besides enrich themselves and they've left us behind," said Antonio Arriola, a member of a recently-created indigenous council that has petitioned the Mexican government for autonomy.

After word spread on Friday that local party bosses may try to deliver ballots in their personal cars, indigenous leaders said they would use bulldozers to dig a trench in the main road to strengthen their blockade, a tactic already employed in a nearby town.

If you live in the US snd haven't already voted, it may be too late.

On the other hand, I am against dual citizenship.

Hat tip to the Drudge Report.

Regards  —  Cliff

Where Is His Sense of Urgency?

For John, BLUFThe Mueller Probe is turning into a sick joke.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

From Politico, by Mr Josh Gerstein, 29 June 2018.

Here is the lede:

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s office is asking a federal court to continue postponing setting a sentencing hearing for Michael Flynn, the former Trump national security adviser who pleaded guilty last year to a felony count of making false statements in the course of an FBI investigation into potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.
Doesn't Mr Mueller realize that a large segment of the population thinks that (1) Mr Trump is like Adolph Hitler and (2) that Mr Trump colluded with Russia over the 2016 election?  Those two things mean that Mr Trump is illegitimate as President.  It is all rubbish, but they believe it. They believe it sincerely.  Either that or they are the worst sorts of hypocrites and will smear anyone for political gain.  But, what if they believe it and start to act on it?  Like La Résistance.

Given that, Mr Mueller is obviously playing with fire by his slow, methodical, pace in this investigation, and he could burn down the nation.  On the one hand, a President, believed by millions to have sold out to President Putin of Russia, is going to a summit with him.  On the other hand, a duly elected President, at least in the minds of millions, is being hamstrung by a never ending investigation that provides leaks to a salacious press and sound bites to politicians who would rather hamstring the legislative process than give any space to a President they dislike despise.

To Review:

  • In July 2016 the FBI began looking into Russian meddling in the US Presidential Election.
  • In November, against all odds and all predictions, Mr Trump won the Electoral College and the Presidency.
  • In May of 2017 the President dismissed FBI Director James Comey, something the Democrats had sought, until it happened.
  • In May of 2017 the Assistant Attorney General, Mr Rod Rosenstein, appointed Mr Mueller as a Special Counsel, with broad duties.
  • Tomorrow will be 1 July 2018, over thirteen months since Mr Mueller was appointed.  The Leader of the French Vichy Government, Marshall of France Philippe Pétain was put on trial for treason from 23 July to 15 August 1945, and that was after VE-Day, in May of 1945.
So, either
  • Mr Mueller is still digging, but hasn't found anything yet, or
  • He has found something, but is waiting for a time which will best help the Democrats, a sort of October Surprise, or
  • It is a good gig and he doesn't wish to see it go away.
Apparently not of interest to anyone else is the question of why our Federal Government did not go after the Russians right from the start.  I figure:
  1. They thought it was merely blow-back from our interfering in a recent Russian election, and
  2. They, incorrectly, believed that Mrs Clinton had a lock and this was noise, and
  3. This was part of the then President's modus operandi of leading from behind.
But, enough, already.

Hat tip to the Drudge Report.

Regards  —  Cliff

Friday, June 29, 2018

Where Are We Going?

For John, BLUFMrs Clinton is a leader in the Democratic Party, but isn't leading us in the proper direction.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Daily Caller, by Mr Justin Caruso, Senior Media Reporter, 29 June 2018.

This is how it starts out:

Failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton rejected calls of civility in a recent interview, calling for “strength and resolve” to resist President Trump.

The Guardian reports that when asked about some on the left becoming “uncivil” recently, she responded:

“‘Oh, give me a break,’ she erupts, eyes widening into indignation.  ‘Give me a break! What is more uncivil and cruel than taking children away?  It should be met with resolve and strength.  And if some of that comes across as a little uncivil, well, children’s lives are at stake; their futures are at stake.  That is that ridiculous concept of bothsideism.'”

Clinton also mocked people who call for civility in political discourse, imitating, “Well, you know, somebody made an insulting, profane remark about President Trump, and he separated 2,300 children from their families, that’s both sides, and we should stop being uncivil — oh, and, by the way, he should stop separating children.”
Speaking of "uncivil", I think using the phrase "Failed presidential candidate" is pretty uncivil.  Not as uncivil as inviting the President's Press Secretary to leave the Red Hen, but still, at some level, uncivil. "Losing" would be better.  On the other hand, "Failed" is closer to the truth.

That said, being uncivil can reach a plateau, or dissipate, or get more harsh.  The interesting question, the important question, is what happens if it gets more harsh.  Are there any limits?  When does rhetoric turn to violence?  And once violence begins, how far does it go?  Frankly, violence seems to lead to civil war, does it not?

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff


For John, BLUFOne problem facing us with regard to racism is that any solution will likely have winners and losers.  Someone will have to admit to be wrong, or admit that their ancestors were wrong or that they failed to step up when the chance was given.  We need a way for everyone to be a winner.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

Today’s consciousness-raising on race is less about helping black people than it is about white people seeking grace.

From The American Interest, by Professor John McWhorter, 24 May 2018.

Here is the start:

By the age of 50, you have lived long enough to remember being a mature adult in what is now a distant era.  I recently recalled a conversation I had as a graduate student in 1991 that demonstrates a key change in America’s “conversation” on race over the past 30 years.

A white humanities graduate student was a member of a campus organization that had brought black activist and filmmaker Marlon Riggs to campus to give a talk.  The student recounted that in his critique of racism, Riggs had leveled some potshots at the students themselves.  This surprised and hurt her, as she had supposed that Riggs would consider her and her friends on his side in having invited him to speak.

Today, that same graduate student would be much less likely to take remarks like Riggs’s that way.  Rather, today’s “woke,” educated white people would quite often lap up being apprised of the racism inside of them by a black speaker they paid, lodged, and fed.  That speaker as often as not today is Ta-Nehisi Coates, who charismatically limns America as a cesspool of bigotry in his writing and in talks nationwide, and is joyously celebrated for it by the very people he is insulting.

I was thinking, nearly a decade ago, that maybe we were heading into an age of better race relations, what with the election of President Obama and the appointment of Attorney General Eric Holder.  A decade of lost opportunities.

I think that the Marxist critique has gotten in the way.  People succeed in the United States due to Anglo-Saxon Privilege.  They adopt it.  It isn't about "White" people.  You can see it in Cameroon, where the Anglo-phone Citizens, collectively, do better than the Franco-phone.  And when they emigrate to the United States they fit right in.

Later on Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

  On the other hand, it looks like the English are giving up their Anglo-Saxon Privilege.

I am Shocked, Shocked

For John, BLUFBuried in here is a violation of the First Amendment.  The Federal Government, and a State Government, locking someone up as a foreign policy move.  It makes one think of John Adams, or Woodrow Wilson or FDR.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Reuters, by the Reuters Staff, 27 June 2018.

Here are the first two paragraphs:

Ahmed Abu Khatallah, the organizer of the deadly Sept. 11, 2012, attack on U.S. diplomatic compounds in Benghazi, Libya, was sentenced on Wednesday to 22 years in prison on terrorism and other charges, the Justice Department said.

Government evidence showed Khatallah led an extremist militia named Ubaydah bin Jarrah, which he directed to carry out the violence in Benghazi, the Justice Department said in a statement.

A friend of mine commented:
I could have SWORN that Benghazi was entirely due to an American-made/-released video that insulted Islam.

I could have SWORN, under oath, that Benghazi was spontaneous and not preplanned.

I'm pretty sure that USG officials, senior ones, did so, in an Administration famed for having NO scandals.

Mr Nakoula Basseley Nakoula could not be reached for comment.

Regards  —  Cliff

The New Colossus

For John, BLUFWe need a plan regarding immigration.  And not just throwing it over the transom to the President.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From PJ Media, by Ms Liz Sheld, 29 June 2018.

The Comment on ICE:

The Democrats are escalating their push to get rid of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency because they do not want the U.S. border to be protected.  I can only assume they want everyone to just walk on in to the U.S., be it Hezbollah, drug cartel honchos, or MS-13.  "Protests have broken out near ICE facilities in New York City, Washington, D.C., and Portland, Ore., in recent days, prompting the agency to put up barriers near entrances or after immigration hearings."
It is like our Progressive Brothers and Sisters think that we should allow the tired, the poor, the huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of Central America's teeming shore, the homeless and tempest-tost to come and reside here in these United States.  What would that be—Some thirty-two million?

Of course it does raise the question of who would be left in Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua to restore those nations to balance and democracy?  Maybe MS-13.

I wonder if this move would help or hurt the efforts to grow the economy and, as Ms Nancy Pelosi likes to point out, raise wages for the working class?

In the mean time, I wonder if this is going to be another long hot Summer.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Ex-Editor Turns on NYT

For John, BLUFI actually think our lot, over at The Sun, are pretty good.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

After her ‘pissed off’ tweet, the former editor slams the newspaper staff’s ‘narcissism,’ its ‘crucifying’ Ali Watkins profile, and ‘missing’ the rise of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

From The Daily Beast, by Reporter Lloyd Grove, 28 June 2018.

Here are the first two paragraphs:

It may not have been the tweet heard ’round the world, but it was certainly heard—like a thunderclap—at The New York Times’ headquarters at 620 Eighth Avenue in Manhattan.

“Kind of pisses me off that @ nytimes is still asking Who Is Ocasio-Cortez?  when it should have covered her campaign,” Jill Abramson erupted on Twitter on Wednesday morning—a biting reference to the newspaper’s original headline concerning the 28-year-old socialist’s shocking Democratic primary upset, a landslide actually, over incumbent Joe Crowley in New York’s 14th Congressional District.


All that said, Journalism does include some risks.  The shootings in Annapolis, Maryland, are an example.  The number of journalists killed in Mexico over the last few years is another.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Europe Finding Trumpism

For John, BLUFI think the selection of Ms Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to run for Congress is another sign that the mainstream Democrats are losing their grip.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From PJ Media, by Richard Fernandez (Belmont Club), 7 June 2018.

Here is the lede plus five:

It has been said a nation can have either welfare or open borders -- but not both -- in the same way one can have a cool air-conditioned room in a blazing desert or an open door -- but not both.  It is the inequality between the outside and inside temperatures that the door is intended to preserve.

The problem of keeping the room cool while leaving the door open is now consuming Angela Merekel's European Union as the refugee problem grows in political size.  Can the EU have no internal borders if it lacks an external one?  If there's no way of keeping benefits in, what is the meaning of out?

That in a nutshell is the problem posed by the 21st century European migrant crisis where millions, mostly "from Muslim-majority countries of regions south and east of Europe, including Western Asia, South Asia and Africa," have streamed into the continent.  They predominantly enter through nations bordering on the Mediterranean and Turkey yet disproportionately settle in the Northern European high-wage areas of the continent.  The resulting disruptions have fueled a succession of local rebellions from countries disproportionately affected by the inrushing tide.  Each straining member country is demanding at least a partial return of control over their internal border in order to cope.

That revolt has finally reached Germany. The New York Times writes that "the populist surge that has left Hungary, Austria and Italy threatening to close their borders to migrants has now spread to Germany, where it could even bring down Chancellor Angela Merkel and further unhinge Europe Union’s cohesion and stability."

The mutiny is led by her own interior minister, Horst Seehofer, a former Bavarian premier with a towering stature and plenty of beer-tent charisma, who sounds more in line with the nativist forces shaping politics in neighboring countries than with his own boss.

His region found itself on the front line of the refugee crisis in 2015, when Ms. Merkel opened the borders to hundreds of thousands of migrants who poured into Bavaria.

The Trump phenomenon is not about Mr Trump.  It is much deeper and it is much older than the period of his time as a Candidate and President.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Dining Out/Dining In

For John, BLUFI don't think we want businesses rejecting customers on political grounds.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Boston Globe, by Reporter Janelle Nanos, 26 June 2018.

I guess it's OK.  Although once the person or party has been seated it seems not just rude, but also a sign of incompetence.  How did they get past the person seating people?

On the other hand, if one is looking for political theater the time with the most drama is best.

On the other other hand, you throw out A, not realizing her cousin, B, is your lawyer in your divorce case and in court B tells the judge she can no longer represent you because you are an Un-American slimeball and an admirer of L. Beria.  Awkward.

You want more Trump?  This is how you get more Trump.

Regards  —  Cliff

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Justice Kennedy vs the Democrats

For John, BLUFI wonder if former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid ever regrets changing the rules for confirming judges?  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From the Althouse blog, 27 June 2018.

Here is the lede plus two:

I was so sure there would be no retirement announcement today.  I think the Justices cling to the bench until Death calls for a vacancy.  But no.  Kennedy retires, and he retires in time for Trump to nominate someone who can be confirmed before the next election works its will on the Senate.

I was away from the blog — driving 100+ miles — but that did give me the opportunity to listen to the cable news channels (via satellite radio) far more than I'd ever put up with them if I were home and in a position to read and write. TV news is such as waste of time.  Kennedy was the swing vote, and lawyers fine-tuned their arguments for him.  I heard that over and over, with virtually no critical opinion about whether it was bad to have years of key Supreme Court decisions determined by the quirks of one human mind.

But that wasn't the main topic.  The main topic — over and over again — was whether the Democratic Senators had any chance to delay the vote on the nominee until after the 2018 elections, which might give Democrats a majority in the Senate.  I didn't hear anyone talking about whether a post-election vote on the nominee would help the Democratic Party win the Senate majority.

OK, don't get distracted by the question of why Professor Althouse was driving 100+ miles.  The issue is Justice Kennedy and his retirement.  And the reaction of the Democrats.
I think it would not.nbsp; Voters tend to agree with the GOP's idea of what makes a good Justice — basically, judicial restraint.  I don't think it will help Democrats in the elections to be saying give us the majority so we can block Trump's nominee (who will be a specific person, with great credentials, and an originalist, nonactivist judicial philosophy).  They'll be better off if the vote has already happened and they can forefront other issues.

I realize that the Democrats believe their bi-coastal majority plurality should give them control of Congress (and the White House), but that is not how the US Constitution is set up.  It is designed to let each of the States feel it is a player, at least to some degree.  Otherwise, why be in the union.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

  Which is why the change in the Greater Lowell Technical High School voting for School Committee was an example of doctrine over common sense.

Left Sendoff for Associate Justice Kennedy

For John, BLUFYes, the left has become unhinged.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

LANGUAGE WARNING.  Some people never grow up.

From PJ Media, by Ms Nicole Russell, 27 June 2018.

That sums it up.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Mrs Clinton's EMails

For John, BLUFNo sale on this editorial.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From the Editorial Board of The Old Gray Lady, 15 June 2018.

Here is how it starts out:

As political bombshells go, this one proved to be something of a dud.

For months, the White House and Congress had been anxiously awaiting the report from Michael Horowitz, the Department of Justice’s inspector general, on a host of politically ticklish moves made by the F.B.I. and the Department of Justice during the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server.

President Trump in particular had been itching to brandish the findings as proof of a sprawling “deep state” plot to bring him down — a plot that, as best anyone can tell, exists wholly within the fever swamp of the president’s imagination.

The report, released Thursday afternoon, ran a whopping 500 pages, but its conclusion can be summed up pretty tidily: Plenty of people did plenty of breathtakingly stupid things, but there is no evidence that political bias affected the outcome of the F.B.I.’s investigation.

As such, if any of the bureau’s errors had any impact on the outcome in 2016, it seems clear that the most consequential was the decision by the former F.B.I. director, James Comey, less than two weeks before the election, to announce that the investigation into Mrs. Clinton’s email was being reopened, a move that almost certainly aided Mr. Trump.

I believe their Lordships at The Times miss the fact that many—in places where the Electoral College was decided for Candidate Trump—had already sized up Mrs Clinton and made up their mind as to how to vote.  That is to say, Mr Comey's action just accelerated what was already the trend.

Regards  —  Cliff

ANTIFA Redefined

For John, BLUFSome of those acting to save us from President Trump are downright scary.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

I got this somewhere in an EMail, and liked it.

And where is the American Civil Liberties Union in all of this?

Regards  —  Cliff

Nazis Under The Bed

For John, BLUFWhen I was young we worried about "Reds under the bed" (like monsters under the bed), but now it is Nazis under the bed.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From PJ Media, by Novelist Sarah Hoyt, 4 June 2018.

Here is the lede plus three:

I was told by numerous, not visibly insane friends and acquaintances on the election night that Trump would start rounding up minorities within the month.

When it didn’t happen, did it calm down?

Oh, heck no.  They ramped it up.  Antifa — supposed to be anti-fascists, while acting like brown-shirts — rampaged in the streets.  Students are encouraged to prevent “fascist” speakers (like, you know, Jordan Peterson who encourages you to clean your room) from speaking, and there are sites like NaziUSA.

All while Trump reduces regulations and not a single person is imprisoned to cover the regime’s ass, like, say, a filmmaker that the regime decided to blame for attacks on our embassies abroad… under Obama.

Here is some more

So, what is going on?

What is going on is that, taught in schools or not, the knowledge that communism/socialism is a disaster has permeated our collective subconscious.  And the idiots still pushing it are bitter, horrible people who want camps and executions… for their opponents.  The fact that they’re convinced there’d be paradise once we’re gone does not excuse them. A hundred million broken eggs and not a single omelet.

So they must resurrect the ghost of the Nazis because it’s the only regime ugly enough to justify their othering of us, and their wanting to kill us.

They look through the hatred in their eyes and see the ghosts of Nazis on our side.  But it is their side that keeps those ghosts alive, as justification for what they want to do to us.

Nazis don’t exist, except in the hearts of socialists, who need them desperately to excuse the mass murders they intend to commit.

It's time for the left to face the fact they're using Nazis as a shield.  And that when the only people you can point to that are worse than you are the Nazis, it's time to abandon your dead-end philosophy.

Remember, Ms Hoyt grew up living in a Fascist Dictatorship.  She may have some insight Ms Samantha Bee lacks.

The other point I would draw is when the author says, "who need them desperately to excuse the mass murders they intend to commit."  I am not saying that Rep Maxine Waters is calling for mass murder, but we are edging in that direction.  If you can't eat out, can you still go to the grocery store?  If you can't, will renounciation of (President) Trump be sufficient to be allowed to obtain and consume food?

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Keep On Truckin'

For John, BLUFIf we want to boost the economy some more we need more vocational education.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

People want more stuff.  Regulations, retirements and a lack of parking spaces aren’t helping long-haul truckers get it to them.

From Bloomberg, by Ms Virginia Postrel, 24 June 2018.

Here is the punch line:

The U.S. trucking industry is short about 50,000 drivers, estimates Bob Costello, chief economist for the American Trucking Associations.  The driver shortage ranked first among industry concerns in the American Transportation Research Institute’s annual survey, released last October.
There are jobs out there, like for welders, and HVAC technicians, and truckers.  We just have to recruit and train up workers, men and women.

In our Commonwealth of Massachusetts we have about 5,400 students looking to get into technical high schools, who can't.  We need to spend the money to make this happen.  According to a Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center report it was cost $27 million.  I bet it will cost closer to $100 million, and be cheap at twice the price.  We just need the General Court to act.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Is the [Far] Left Getting Ansty For A Fight?

For John, BLUFI don't think it would be a fair fight, once folks realized it was a fight.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Over at the InstaPundit, Sarah Hoyt, who was born in a nation with a Fascist Dictatorship, gives us a link to:

Here is the sub-headline:

…because they’re advocating going down a road that would have an excellent chance of leading there.

The Red Guard?

From the Neo-NeoCon Blog, 25 June 2018.

Here are the second and third paragraphs:

And for those who think I’m engaging in hyperbole, please read an essay appearing today entitled “This is just the beginning.” One of the many interesting things about that sort of call for action is that if the right was anywhere near as power-mad and oppressive as the author seems to think it is, he and his fellow-travelers would already be in prison or worse. But they’re not.

As Orwell said, “So much of left-wing thought is a kind of playing with fire by people who don’t even know that fire is hot.”

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

The Polls Suggest Immigration A Winning Issue

For John, BLUFAs someone said, the Democrats keep putting torpedoes in the water and they keep circling back on them.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Go ahead; guess.

From Hot Air, by Mr Ed Morrissey, 25 June 2018.

President Trump can't be as smart as he appears.  Surely Senate Minority Leader Schumer and House Minority Leader Pelosi are secretly helping him.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Helping Others Cope

For John, BLUFWe have to look out for each other.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The New York Post, by Ms Salena Zito, 9 June 2018.

Here is the final paragraph:

In those hints, we need to be a caretaker of our fellow man.  It’s an obligation that far exceeds simple, dispassionate texts like “How are you doing?”
I am, per Myers-Briggs, an Introvert, so I am not big on digging into the lives of others, but we all have an obligation to be open to the needs of others, hard as it might be.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Mrs Clinton Loose in England

For John, BLUFMrs Clinton has no sense of American political traditions, and the why?  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

‘We will leave discussion of the American Electoral College for another day’

From Grabien News, 25 June 2018.

Of course she does.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Monday, June 25, 2018

Known by the Friends One Keeps

For John, BLUFProverbs 13:20:  "He that walketh with wise men shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed."  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Posted at the Red State blog by Ms Sarah Rumpf, 22 June 2018.

Here is a key segment of the story:

The obituary also knocks Krauthammer for occasionally taking “a corrosive tone” about President Barack Obama:
He called President Barack Obama “a man of first-class intellect and first-class temperament” but took jabs at his “highly suspect” character, citing his friendships with his “race-baiting” pastor Jeremiah Wright and the “unrepentant terrorist” Bill Ayers.
I have seen the tapes of the Reverand Jeremiah Wright preaching.  Yes, he did seem a "race-baiter".  I am glad he was able to lead then Mr Obama to Christ.  But, some day those Wright chickens will come home to roost.

For me, more concerning, is the relationship with the unrepentant Bill Ayers.  Mr Ayers participated in or inspired a number of domestic terrorist events, including one that resulted in the death of someone I had met, leaving a widow, who I had met, before the bombing, and after.  Forgive Mr Ayers?  Yes.  Forget?  Not yet.

The Washington Post Editors are ignorant ideologies.

Rest In Peace, Charles Krauthammer.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

  Finding Jesus, as your personal Lord and Saviour, is the most important move of one's life.

Let The Good Times Roll

For John, BLUFI think Mr Klavan is correct.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

A tweet from Mr Andrew Klavan.

These are not troubled times.  These are good times during which the left is angry.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Good Bye Laura Ingalls Wilder

For John, BLUFThe past is a bog in which we can be trapped and killed.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

American Library Association changes award name after examining ‘expressions of stereotypical attitudes’ in books

From The Guardian, by the Associated Press in Chicago, 24 June 2018.

At some level I don't care.  I didn't read the Little House on the Prairie series.  I read My Ántonia in school.  But, maybe it wasn't a real children's book, what with the burial of the suicide at the crossroads discussion.

This is why we need to be careful about naming public buildings and the like after living people.  When we are digging up the dead and desecrating their graves in the name of Presentism, how much more risky is commemorating the living?

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Sunday, June 24, 2018

Media is Confused

For John, BLUFIf you believe the Media, President Trump is in serious trouble.  If you read the election results he seems to be doing OK.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From the Blog of Professor Ann Althouse, today, 24 June 2018..

Here is the sequence of links.

Here, from Real Clear Politics, is "President Trump Job Approval".

Then Professor Althouse blends in a New York Times article, "As Critics Assail Trump, His Supporters Dig In Deeper".

To get a sense of what people are thinking, sample the comments at the Althouse Blog.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Your Future Colleague is Beyond the Pale

For John, BLUFCan't we disagree without being disagreeable?  Nothing to see here; just move along.

A post by Writer Ed Driscoll, at the InstaPundit, Sunday, 24 June 2018.

This is a discussion of the left, and the media (but I repeat myself), using Hitler and Nazi and Fascist to try to paint Republicans into a box.

While we are now in the shunning phase, with people being run out of restaurants, we will come to a fork in the road, where we return to civilization, a new civility that the Democrats once talked about in the recent past, or we go full James T. Hodgkinson, with bullets flying.

I am hoping that this heated rhetoric will soon cool off.  Maybe a report from Special Counsel Robert Mueller saying that there was no collusion will calm things down.  We can only hope.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Looking at Illegal Immigration Globally

For John, BLUFThe Media still doesn't realize that Mr Trump was just the one to fill the gap and that gap is world wide.  We are seeing a revolt of the hoi-polloi.  The coastal elites don't get it.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

And it is a crisis, and not just in the Southwest of the United States.  It is a crisis in Europe.  It is a crisis in South America, with a million Venezuelans having gone to Columbia.  Then there is Central America, which is emptying out as people head for the United States.  It is a crisis in Asia, including Afghanistan/Pakistan, Burma/Bangledesh and China/North Korea.  The Chinese have even moved army troops up to its border with North Korea.  One assumes they fear economic collapse on top of serious human rights violations.

This piece is from PJ Media, by Richard Fernandez (of the The Belmont Club), 24 June 2018.

Here is the lede plus four:

On both sides of the Atlantic borders have become a big issue in the guise of the equivalent question of whether a country can restrict the entry of migrants to numbers the electorate regards as sustainable.

In the US the family impact of arresting illegal aliens has intensified political hostility nearly to the point of physical conflict.  The New York Times sadly notes Trump supporters no longer even listen to the media's frequent denunciations of the incumbent president.  How can they stand him?  "This includes portions of the wealthy college-educated people in swing counties ... and the endless stream of tough cable news coverage and bad headlines about Mr. Trump only galvanizes them further."

Both sides have dug in along some gigantic political Western Front.  The NYT argued it was Trump's failure to follow the unofficial policy that immigration law was best humanely ignored or at least, as Kevin Jennings former assistant deputy secretary of Education under President Obama argued in the LA Times, transcended, that caused the crisis.

Jennings wrote "coming here 'illegally' did not even exist as a concept" until a hundred years ago.  With opinion so divided it is not surprising that White House press secretary Sarah Sanders "was booted from a Virginia restaurant because she works for President Donald Trump, the latest administration official to experience a brusque reception in a public setting."  Nor will she likely be the last.  Mother Jones tweeted:  "Trump officials can no longer eat out in peace."

In Europe things are if anything worse.  A growing coalition of parties demanding control over national boundaries was threatening the future of the European Union itself -- or at least the chancellorship of Angela Merkel.  "European Union leaders gather in Brussels on Sunday in an attempt to bridge their deep divisions over migration, an issue that has been splitting them for years and now poses a fresh threat to German Chancellor Angela Merkel."

For those who think the border crisis is just about President Trump, the fact is, it isn't.

The author continues:

The fact that borders have become an issue at all after decades of assurance the circle could be squared is perhaps the most significant fact of all.  For years the bipartisan consensus was to politely pretend it could all be worked out.  As the New York Times wrote, "for more than a decade ... seasonal spikes in unauthorized border crossings had bedeviled American presidents in both political parties, prompting them to cast about for increasingly aggressive ways to discourage migrants from making the trek.  Yet for George W. Bush and Barack Obama, the idea of crying children torn from their parents’ arms was simply too inhumane — and too politically perilous — to embrace as policy."
The problem is, it is too politically perilous, across the globe, to no longer work this issue.

If you want some background, read the 1973 novel by Frenchman Jean Raspail, The Camp of the Saints, summarized here.  By the way, the very corrupt Southern Poverty Law Center has condemned the book.  All the more reason to read it.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

More on AMLO

For John, BLUFAMLO's election could be as disruptive as Mr Trump's.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the the other side of Mexican Presidential Candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador, mentioned in the previous post.

From The Daily Caller, by Mr Dominic Mancini, 22 June 2018.

Here is the lede plus two:

Mexican presidential candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) called for mass immigration to the United States during a speech Tuesday declaring it a “human right” for all North Americans.

“And soon, very soon — after the victory of our movement — we will defend all the migrants in the American continent and all the migrants in the world,” Obrador said, adding that immigrants “must leave their towns and find a life in the United States.”

He then declared it as “a human right we will defend,” reports.

On Maria Bartiromo's show, Sunday Morning Futures, this Sunday morning, Analyst Ed Rollins said that the US Mexican border does more traffic, legal and illegal, than any other in the world.  This will only make it a bigger challenge.

Is the plan to depopulate Central America?  To what end?

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Elections South of the Border

For John, BLUFFor the United States this is an important election.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From AP News, by Reporter Mark Stevenson, 5 June 2018.

This Sunday (today) there is a Presidential Election in Turkey, but next Sunday, 1 July, it is in Mexico.  The linked analysis, from AP News, doesn't help much, but it does provide some color on one Candidate, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO).

I liked AMLO's response to allegations of collusion with Russia.

After some suggested without proof that he may have benefited from Russian election tampering, Lopez Obrador filmed a video by the side of a harbor in the Gulf coast state of Veracruz joking that his name was actually Andres Manuelovich and saying he was waiting for a Russian submarine bringing him gold from Moscow.
As a lady from Lowell once said.  "Fasten your seat belts; it's going to be a bumpy night."

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Fixing the Outcomes of Racism

For John, BLUFI know, you like Colleen best.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Quillette, by Coleman Hughes, 5 June 2018.  Mr Coleman is an undergraduate philosophy major at Columbia University.  He defines himself, in this article, as Black.

A question the author asks is:

Though the question seems naïve to some, it is in fact perfectly valid to ask why black people can get away with behavior that white people can’t.
Attorney General Eric Holder said, almost a decade ago, that we needed to have a conversation on race.  It didn't happen then and it hasn't happened yet.

In fact, this hiatus is only making things worse.  And it needs to be a real conversation, not just a condemnation of someone's position on what is called "entrenched racism", as in a letter to the editor of The [Lowell] Sun on Friday, the 22nd of June.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Please Show Some Class

For John, BLUFDoxxing with double sawbucks.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The National Review, by Theodore Kupfer, 8 June 2018.

Doxxing is publishing on the Internet the personal information of someone you find odious in some way.

Doxxing results in people being harassed, losing their jobs and losing their businesses.  Sometimes even folks a couple of degrees of separation away from the primary target.

Please don't engage in doxxing.  It is definitely low-rent.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Invidious Comparisons

For John, BLUFEnough with the Hitler comparisons.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From PJ Media, by Ms Sarah Hoyt, 22 June 2018.

Here are the first three paragraphs:

My sons started playing a game about ten years ago when they were in their early and mid-teens.  If I was doing something, usually something perfectly normal, particularly if I told them, “Wait a minute, while I finish writing this post” they’d say “You know who else wrote posts?” and the answer was “Hitler.”

Younger son, who is… uh… like me threw in a new wrinkle, when I got exasperated and said “Hitler” before he could, he would say “Good Lord, no.  What made you think that?” with an expression of theatrical horror.

Little did I know the left would be playing this for real.  And honestly now I wonder if the kids were saying that because their teachers were already playing at this nonsense.

Of course, the other side could go with the Joseph Stalin comparisons, with Mr Robert Mueller being cast in the role of Lavrentiy Beria.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Sunday Vote in Turkey

For John, BLUFThis is one of those little noted, in the United States, elections that could have big impacts on us, as the results unfold.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

President looks set to win new term but economic pain and united opposition threaten his leadership

From The Wall Street Journal, by Mr David Gauthier-Villars, 22 June 2018.

Here is the lede plus four:

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is bidding to extend his 15-year rule on Sunday in elections that rivals deem unfair—a growing pattern in countries from Russia to Hungary to Egypt, where leaders are using ballots as a waypoint to cement their authoritarian grip on power.

But with economic woes weighing heavily on Turkish voters, Mr. Erdogan’s prospect of entering a five-year term with a rubber-stamp parliament isn’t guaranteed, threatening a period of uncertainty in this strategic linchpin between the West and the Middle East.

Since a 2016 military coup attempt that nearly swept him away, Mr. Erdogan has jailed former allies he accuses of plotting the attack and run the country under “extraordinary rule” that allows for exceptional police measures and governance by decree.  He has cracked down on political opponents and assembled a coterie of loyal oligarchs; he has repressed independent press and purged the military.

This one-man drive has given Mr. Erdogan unprecedented control over all state institutions, including the electoral authority, ahead of Sunday’s presidential and parliamentary ballots.  A re-elected Mr. Erdogan would also gain vastly expanded executive powers over legislation and the judiciary, thanks to constitutional changes voters narrowly approved last year.

And yet, unlike in Russia where President Vladimir Putin was re-elected with 77% of the votes in March, Turkish pollsters predict a divided result.

The Reporter uses the term "linchpin", and so Turkey is.  Turkey moving into instability would be bad for Europe, Asia and the Middle East.  It sits at the cross roads of Eurasia and if it does well others have a chance of doing well.  While I have no special affection for Mr Erdogan, I do wish the voters well in a very important decision.

Regards  —  Cliff


For John, BLUFThis is why the current and past) Administrations don't want employees freely talking to the Press, rather than checking with Public Affairs first.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

"Our defense of speech may have a greater or lesser harmful impact on the equality and justice work to which we are also committed."

From Reason Magazine, by Mr Robby Soave, 21 June 2018.

Here is the lede plus one:

The American Civil Liberties Union will weigh its interest in protecting the First Amendment against its other commitments to social justice, racial equality, and women's rights, given the possibility that offensive speech might undermine ACLU goals.

"Our defense of speech may have a greater or lesser harmful impact on the equality and justice work to which we are also committed," wrote ACLU staffers in a confidential memo obtained by former board member Wendy Kaminer.

I used to give, annually, to the ACLU, and the NRA (to cover what the ACLU didn't in terms of rights), but now I don't know who covers the First Amendment.  Apparently not the ACLU, at least any longer.

Hat tip to the The Drudge Report.

Regards  —  Cliff

Bias Confirmation

For John, BLUFRemember, Psychopaths are just like us, only more goal oriented.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

A new study ranks each state, plus D.C., by their psychopathic tendencies.  The race for first? It isn’t even close.

From Politico by Mr Derek Robertson, 23 June 2018.

Read it yourself.

Hat tip to the The Drudge Report.

Regards  —  Cliff

Friday, June 22, 2018

The Societal Danger of Mathematics

For John, BLUFWe don't need no stinking math.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

Some things in life are objective and rational, and that’s perfectly okay.

From National Review, by Katherine Timpf, 20 June 2018.

Here is the lede plus five:

According to a new textbook written by a professor at the University of Exeter, learning mathematics can cause “collateral damage” to society because it “provides a training in ethics-free thought.”

“Reasoning without meanings provides a training in ethics-free thought,” Paul Ernest writes in “The Ethics of Mathematics:  Is Mathematics Harmful?” — a chapter of his book The Philosophy of Mathematics Education Today.

In an abstract for the book, Ernest claims that although he does “acknowledge that mathematics is a widespread force for good,” “there is significant collateral damage caused by learning mathematics.”

According to Ernest, this “collateral damage” happens in three ways.  First, he argues, the styles of thinking involved with mathematics are “detached” and “calculated” ones, which value “rules, abstraction, objectification, impersonality, unfeelingness, dispassionate reason, and analysis” — which he claims “can be damaging when applied beyond mathematics to social and human issues.”

The second problem, he explains, is that “the applications of mathematics in society can be deleterious to our humanity unless very carefully monitored and checked.”

“Money and thus mathematics is the tool for the distribution of wealth,” he writes.  “It can therefore be argued that as the key underpinning conceptual tool mathematics is implicated in the global disparities in wealth.”

Finally, Ernest claims, “the personal impact of learning mathematics on learners’ thinking and life chances can be negative for a minority of less successful students, as well as potentially harmful for successful students.”  Ernest continues to explain that math is often viewed as “masculine,” and that that can essentially make it difficult for women to deal with learning it.

I guess the solution is to stop teaching math in school, although still teach counting, so we can tell ages and book page numbers.  And the knowledge of making change.  But, leave anything else up to a Secret Society.  The initiates would learn the secrets of quadratic equations and trigonometry and geometry and things beyond.  Boy Scouts would still be allowed to use that trick for measuring the width of a river by using trees and pacing things off.

By the way, the book is another overpriced item out of academia.  Don't buy it, even in the Kindle version.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Walls Have Existed For Millennia

For John, BLUFSure, there are places it is hard to build the wall, so step back and build it elsewhere.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

From , by Mr Andrew Klavan, 22 June 2018.

While re-reading Aristotle’s classic Politics, Mr Klavan finds that Aristotle says, build the wall.

Who am I to argue with the eminent Greek?

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Senator Warren's Claims

For John, BLUFYou should have Senator Warren on the show some day, just not when I am the host.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

The Elizabeth Warren scandal you probably never heard of, but will be an issue if she runs for president.

From Legal Insurrection, by Professor William A. Jacobson, 22 June 2018.

And it isn't just Professor Jacobson.  Law Professor Gail Heriot wrote about it back in 2006.

Here is the meat of it:

There’s another scandal which, in some ways, is even bigger than Warren’s Native American problem, since it goes directly to Warren’s academic and political credibility.  That scandal concerns Warren’s research methods into consumer issues which catapulted her to liberal fame.
Yes, while I judge her better than our Commonwealth Attorney General, I still feel like I need check everything she says.  Remember her "You didn't build that."?

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

  To be fare, that was President Obama's spin on what she originally said, and then doubled down on.  Of course, in Senator Warren's state of residence, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Supreme Judicial Court just ruled that the Commonwealth Constitution does not allow rich people to be taxed more than others.

IRS as Enforcer

For John, BLUFThe IRS can be a weapon, wielded by politicians or bureaucrats, to keep the hoi polloi in line.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Note:  It was a Staffer, and not the Senator.

From The Lid Blog, by Mr Jeff Dunetz, 21 Jun 2018.

Here are the first two paragraphs:

Judicial Watch released some documents revealing that a John McCain staffer urged Lois Lerner to audit non-exempt organizations until they financially collapsed. What he didn’t know was Lerner was already attacking the 501(C)(3), groups.  By April 30th, 2013, Sen. John McCain’s staff director Henry Kerner, had moved on to be the chief counsel on the McCain-chaired Senate Homeland Security Permanent Subcommittee.

On that last day of April he urged a group of senior IRS officials, including the infamous director of exempt organizations Lois Lerner that if she thinks the groups were being political to “audit so many that it becomes financially ruinous.”

One assumes that the [unelected] staffer was working at the direction of his principal, and not free lancing.

And, one assumes that the IRS would only go against those that were violating the rules.

And, one assumes that this was not that Lois Lerner.

UPDATE:  Senator McCain's Office Pushes Back, strongly.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Human Rights in Venezuela

For John, BLUFFailed societies create refugees.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Campus Reform, by Grace Gottschling, Investigative Reporter, on 1 June 2018.

Here is how it starts off:

A law professor who specializes in human rights claims that Venezuelans are “better off” because of Hugo Chávez and are currently enjoying “free and fair” elections.

Daniel Kovalik, who teaches international human rights law at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, argues in a recent op-ed for The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that U.S. media coverage of Venezuela “ignores the fact” that the U.S. is the “greatest impediment to democracy” in Venezuela and “throughout Latin America.”

Kovalik asserts that the “true patriots” of Venezuela “resent” the “devastating economic sanctions” imposed by the U.S., claiming that a vote for current socialist President Nicolás Maduro “was a vote against U.S. meddling” in the country’s affairs.

On the other hand, there is this lede sentence from the Wikipedia entry for Bolivarian Diaspora:

The Bolivarian diaspora is the largest recorded refugee crisis in the Americas and refers to the emigration of millions of Venezuelans from their native country during the presidencies of Hugo Chávez and Nicolás Maduro, due to the establishment of their Bolivarian Revolution.
The good news for the Venezuelans is that they don't live in North Korea.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Hacking the Election

For John, BLUFMaybe this problem is down in the noise level.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Yahoo News, by Mr Michael Isikoff, Chief Investigative Correspondent, 20 June 2018.

This is not "new" news, having been revealed earlier.  President Obama’s “stand down” order and decision to confront Putin directly about Russian election interference at the Sept 2016 G20 meeting in Singapore has been in the public domain for some time.  Former National Intelligence Director James Clapper describes these circumstances in a similar manner in his recent memoir of his career.

Here is the lede plus three:

The Obama White House’s chief cyber official testified Wednesday that proposals he was developing to counter Russia’s attack on the U.S. presidential election were put on a “back burner” after he was ordered to “stand down” his efforts in the summer of 2016.

The comments by Michael Daniel, who served as White House “cyber security coordinator” between 2012 and January of last year, provided his first public confirmation of a much-discussed passage in the book, “Russian Roulette:  The Inside Story of Putin’s War on America and the Election of Donald Trump,” co-written by this reporter and David Corn, that detailed his thwarted efforts to respond to the Russian attack.

They came during a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing into how the Obama administration dealt with Russian cyber and information warfare attacks in 2016, an issue that has become one of the more politically sensitive subjects in the panel’s ongoing investigation into Russia’s interference in the U.S. election and any links to the Trump campaign.

The view that the Obama administration failed to adequately piece together intelligence about the Russian campaign and develop a forceful response has clearly gained traction with the intelligence committee.  Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., the ranking Democrat on the panel, said in an opening statement that “we were caught flat-footed at the outset and our collective response was inadequate to meet Russia’s escalation.”

This is about the previous Administration.  Why were the Russians allowed to conduct a continuous meddling in our elections?  The understanding of the situation was reinforced here:

That conclusion was reinforced Wednesday by another witness, Victoria Nuland, who served as assistant secretary of state for Europe during the Obama administration.  She told the panel that she had been briefed as early as December 2015 about the hacking of the Democratic National Committee — long before senior DNC officials were aware of it — and that the intrusion had all the hallmarks of a Russian operation.
What this testimony and Clapper’s recollection do not do is explain why, after confronting Putin and Russia about standing down its election interference efforts, the US did not employ its cyber capabilities in an escalating manner against the Russians.  I am blaming Governor Mitt Romney.

Or, maybe, the previous Administration was concerned that this might escalate into a shooting war, as in Ukraine, although where the shooting might break out is a mystery.

In the mean time, the current Administration seems to be following the lead of its predecessor.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Being Ugly in Public

For John, BLUFEveryone has a First Amendment right to free speech.  On the other hand, those taking the King's shilling [a classic reference] are expected, in my mind, at least, to not be out disrupting the King's work, so to speak.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Daily Caller, by Reporter Joe Simonson, 20 June 2018.

Here is the lede plus five:

One of the activists who chased Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen out of a Mexican restaurant Tuesday night over the Trump administration’s immigration policies is an employee of the Department of Justice, The Daily Caller News Foundation has confirmed.

Members of the Washington, D.C., chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America crashed Nielsen’s meal with a demonstration full of chants and other outbursts.

One of those participants, _______ ______, actually works for the Trump administration — as a paralegal in the DOJ.

“Kirstjen Nielsen, you’re a villain, locking up immigrant children,” activists can be heard saying in a video.

The right to free speech is the right to be stupid, or uncouth, as in this case.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

  Not doxxing here.

Charade of Immigration

For John, BLUFI think this is a sign that the Mueller Investigation is not going well in the polls.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From PJ Media, by Mr Roger L Simon, 19 June 2018.

Here is the lede plus one:

If you sought to preserve the violent, reactionary and undemocratic regimes of countries like El Salvador and Honduras -- and, to a great extent, Mexico -- into perpetuity, how would you do it?

One way would be by providing a permanent U.S. safety valve for all their poor and downtrodden, the victims.

Yes, that is Mr Simon's point.  Emigration means the depletion of the human capital needed to fix the immigrants' home nation.

And, of course, this is now a cudgel for the Democrats to use to beat President Trump over the head.

The part I find most interesting is where Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer wants the President to ignore the law by issuing a Presidential Executive Order.  I think he should, and then add one more, one that Senator Schumer is bound to dislike.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

  The problem is, that WOULD make us like National Socialist Germany, or, even better, the Soviet Union.

Reining in Asset Forfeiture

For John, BLUFExcessive fines are abusive.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

The case will decide whether the Excessive Fines Clause of the Eighth Amendment applies to the states.  If so, it will also have to address how much it restricts asset forfeiture.

From The Volokh Conspiracy, at Reason Magazine, by Lawyer Ilya Somin, 19 June 2018.

This is one of those obscure items that lawyers and those interested in the Constitution like to wrestle with.

I am with Lawyer Somin on this.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

A Fork in the Road

For John, BLUFKudos to Harvard for supporting this.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The New York Post, by Ms Salena Zito, 16 June 2018.

Here is the lead-in to the story:

On a blustery afternoon in April, I filed into a van along with 10 students from Harvard.  We had just spent the last two days in Chicopee, Mass., where we had chatted with the police chief and his force, the mayor and his staff, small-business owners, waitresses and firemen about their struggles living in small-town America.

The undergrads were buzzing with their impressions. Chicopee is about 90 miles west of their prestigious university in Cambridge, but when it comes to shared experience, it might as well have been 1,000 light years away.

As they settled in, I looked at them.

“So,” I said, “who do you think most of the people you just got to know voted for president?”

None of the students had an answer. It hadn’t come up in their conversations and they didn’t know I had privately asked each person who they’d voted for.

So, I let a minute pass and told them.

“Nearly every one of them voted for Trump.”

My students looked stunned, at first.  But then a recognition crossed their faces.

Gives me hope.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Erik Prince Grilled

For John, BLUFMaybe it isn't presentism, but this view that Messrs Trump and Putin are the most evil ever is a little off the mark.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

The Trumpworld insider is under scrutiny for his alleged backchanneling with Russia, his work for China, and his plans for Afghanistan.  He defends it all in a new interview.

From The Daily Beast, by Ms Betsy Woodruff, 11 June 2018.

A comment attributed to Mr Erik Prince:

As I've said before, if Franklin Roosevelt can work with Joseph Stalin to defeat German fascism, Nazi fascism, national socialist fascism, then certainly Donald Trump can work with Putin to defeat Islamic fascism.
It is more than this quote, and an interesting read.

I have to admit that between Putin and Stalin, I see Joseph Stalin as, by far, the more evil leader.

Regards  —  Cliff

Action at J Edger Hoover Building

For John, BLUFI have a friend, who wrote regarding a closely related topic, "I love it when the circus comes to town."  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Wash Post, by Mr Matt Zapotosky, 19 June 2018, at 1650.

Here is the lede plus three:

The FBI agent who was removed from the special counsel investigation for sending anti-Trump texts was escorted from the FBI building Friday and effectively relieved of work responsibilities — though he technically remains an FBI agent, his lawyer said.

Peter Strzok already had been re-assigned to the FBI’s Human Resources Division after he was taken off Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s team, though the move last week effectively took him off even that assignment.

His lawyer, Aitan Goelman, said in a statement, that Strzok was “being put through a highly questionable process,” and those in the public should be concerned about how politics had “been allowed to undermine due process and the legal protections owed to someone who has served his country for so long.”

“Pete has steadfastly played by the rules and respected the process, and yet he continues to be the target of unfounded personal attacks, political games and inappropriate information leaks,” Goelman said.  “All of this seriously calls into question the impartiality of the disciplinary process, which now appears tainted by political influence.”

I thought it was rich that Agent Strzok's lawyer, Mr Goelman, was concerned that "politics" was being "allowed to undermine due process".  I wonder if Mr Strzok would garner sympathy from President Trump over that.

Agent Strzok's case is probably being examined by the FBI’s Office of Professional Responsibility.

As a side point, the DOJ said it was slow in releasing Text Messages to the Congress due to a technical glitch.  On the Howie Carr show this afternoon the poll question was if the listeners believed the DOJ with regard to the technical glitch.  Believers was two percent when I was listening to the show at around 1630.

Regards  —  Cliff

Monday, June 18, 2018

Looking Up

For John, BLUFEach of us has to take an interest in our City.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

It is Monday of a new week and the "R" is back in "PARKING" in the sign on the end of the Edward Early Jr. Parking Garage.

Thank you, City Manager.

Regards  —  Cliff

For John, BLUFThe Southern Poverty Law Center is a bully.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Acronym Alert:  SPLC stands for Southern Poverty Law Center.

From The Daily Beast, today, 18 June 2018.

It is just one paragraph and a link. The SPLC seems to have an agenda and seems to lack nuance.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Losing Science

For John, BLUFThere are truly weird ideas out there, foisted on us in the name of "social justice".  Nothing to see here; just move along.

The linked item is a comment on a 6 June 2018 editorial in Nature, headlined "Science benefits from diversity".  Here is the sub-headline:

Improving the participation of under-represented groups is not just fairer — it could produce better research.

The discussion is from L'Ombre de l'Olivier, by Francis Turner, 14 June 2018.

The blog discussion ends with this quote from Quora:

I got into an argument with my friend because I reject evolution because it’s heteronormative.  Are science going to make evolution more inclusive or will they replace it with something else?
Yes, we should absolutely have diversity in science.  Everyone should have a crack at playing in that sandbox, since, after aviation, it is the most fun sandbox around.

As for the idea that there is caucasian male heteronormative science and then there are alternative scientific answers and caucasian male heteronormative science is oppressive, I would like to see the peer reviewed studies.  Back in the day there was the expression "light in the loafers" for those whose sexual orientation was gay, but that did not literally mean that there was a separate law of gravity for non-straight men.  That approach to science is like a self-licking ice cream cone and does nothing to unlock the secrets nature still holds.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Pope Says No

For John, BLUFForty percent of the Commonwealth budget is for health care.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

This is an AP Story in The New York Post, on 17 June 2018.

Here is the lede plus five:

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis denounced abortion on Saturday as the “white glove” equivalent of the Nazi-era eugenics program and urged families to accept the children that God gives them.

Francis spoke off-the-cuff to a meeting of an Italian family association, ditching his prepared remarks to speak from the heart about families and the trials they undergo.  He lamented how some couples choose not to have any children, while others resort to pre-natal testing to see if their baby has any malformations or genetic problems.

“The first proposal in such a case is, ‘Do we get rid of it?'” Francis said.  “The murder of children. To have an easy life, they get rid of an innocent.”

Francis recalled that as a child he was horrified to hear stories from his teacher about children “thrown from the mountain” if they were born with malformations.

“Today we do the same thing,” he said.

“Last century, the whole world was scandalized by what the Nazis did to purify the race.  Today, we do the same thing but with white gloves,” Francis said.

And, as the cost of medical care continues to rise, we will go from the "right to die" to the "duty to die".

The Pope is right here.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Who Advocates For The Patient?

For John, BLUFThis is a disgrace.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Wash Post, by Ms Theresa Vargas, a Columnist, 16 June 2018.

Here are two key paragraphs:

But here is what we already know:  Nationally, black babies are more than twice as likely as white babies to die, and black women are more than three times as likely to die of pregnancy-related causes as white women.

The District’s maternal mortality rate is more than double the nation’s, and among the maternal deaths recorded between 2014 and 2016 in Washington, 75 percent were of African American women.  Infants in predominantly black Southeast Washington have been found to die at nearly 10 times the rate of those in wealthier and whiter Northwest Washington.

I would like to see the statistics for Washington Northeast, as a comparison.  If the Columnist is correct, they would be between NW and SE.  The Southwest numbers are probably too small to fit into the discussion.

There is no doubt that this represents a failure to provide proper health care, both in DC and across the nation.  And while I can see it being partly due to a lack of understanding on the part of patients and their family and friends, I also see it as a crying need for the medical community to compensate.

And, this isn't a secret.  While I have seen indications of this from time to time, this is a strong confirmation.  What have the health care professionals been doing for the last 50 years?

One thing this does point up is the need for people in hospitals and even those visiting doctors, to have strong advocates with them, advocates to ask the questions that need to be asked to avoid a simple, but wrong, medical solution resulting in death or disability.  One of the many good things my wife does is perform as a health care advocate for others, asking questions, checking things on the World Wide Web, and making suggestions.  Advocating.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Pres Trump Putting His Stamp on DC

For John, BLUFGood surface analysis, but a deeper dive is needed.  And, Mr Viser should be checking out the Massachusetts border towns.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Boston Globe, by Mr Matt Viser of the Globe Staff, datelined 15 June 2018, out of Washington.

Here are the first three paragraphs:

President Trump’s White House presents a daily tableau of chaos, falsehoods, caustic attacks, and allegations of corruption.  But despite his stormy and impulsive management style — and in some ways, because of it — Trump is presiding over an administration that is grinding out policy victories with surprising efficiency, fulfilling campaign promises and propelling his support among Republican voters to record heights.

Nearly 18 months after taking office, his accomplishments have reached something of a critical mass, with Republicans rallying around him over wins that have thrilled the party base from social conservatives to defense hawks.  The majority of his successes have been reversals of the Obama agenda, a goal shared by Republican leaders who are now tacitly or actively participating in his remake of the 164-year-old Republican Party to match his own image and priorities.

Republican supporters assert that, after a rocky start in 2017, Trump has learned on the job and is now firmly in control of the GOP and the nation’s agenda.  If they are right, it is certainly Democrats’ worst nightmare.

OK, so far so good.

I thought this was an interesting comment by Mr Peter Fenn, a longtime Democratic strategist:

There are people, whether in the Justice Department dealing with immigration or in housing and urban development dealing with help for poor people — you’ve got ideologies in there who are undermining, in our view, clear, right policy objectives.
Interesting in that it is said like there were no ideologies under the previous administration, or no deeply imbedded ideologies left over in the Federal Government in the current Administration.  Ideologies are, apparently, only those evil Republicans.

Here is the concluding paragraph:

In those places where he placed very conservative people who had a clear agenda . . . there is definitely big change happening in subterranean ways,” said Daniel Gitterman, a professor of public policy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill who has studied Trump’s executive orders.  “Perhaps by all the focus on dysfunction of the White House, we’re missing that he’s got some lieutenants who have a clear mission.
I am glad that sort of thing didn't happen in the previous Administration.  And you can tell by the way Government employees pretty evenly split their contributions amongst the several candidates for President in 2016.

Regards  —  Cliff

  Matt Viser can be reached at

Friday, June 15, 2018

A Twisted Path at DOJ

For John, BLUFHere is the fun side of the DOJ IG Report on the Hillary EMail Investigation.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Lid Blog, by Mr Jeff Dunetz, 15 Jun 2018.

Here is the lede plus five:

The IG report about the FBI’s Hillary investigation absolutely skewered the senior players of the FBI.  While the Democrats and Media (I guess those terms are redundant).  While the Democrats and the Mainstream Media are focusing on the most damaging (or mitigating) parts of the almost 600-page report, we will take a different approach and focus on the five most ironic parts of the investigation\
1)  While Comey was investigating Hillary Clinton for using her personal email to conduct State Department business, “Comey used a personal email account (a Gmail account) to conduct FBI business.” (pg. 427)  So did the FBI lovers and Trump haters Peter Strzok and Lisa Page (xii).

2)  Comey was one of the few people in the world that didn’t know that Huma Abedin was married to Anthony Weiner.

3)  For those who believe that the reopening of the Hillary Clinton Email investigation two weeks before the election helped Trump win–guess what?  Don’t blame it on Comey, blame it on Peter Strzok and Lisa Page the FBI lovers and the ultimate Trump haters.

4)  According to the IG, the FBI, supposedly the best law enforcement agency in the world may have taken bribes from the press in exchange for leaking information.

5)  Strzok, the first FBI investigator of any Russia/Trump connections, and hater of President Trump believed there was nothing to the Russia collusion charges:

Res ipsa loquitur.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff