Interesting Bits

10/01/2017 7:19

The Left Hates You. Act Accordingly

They hate you, because by defying them you have prevented them from living up to the dictates of their false religion. Our rebelliousness has denied them the state of grace they seek, exercising their divine right to dictate every aspect of our puny lives. Their sick faith gives meaning to these secular weirdos, giving them something that fills their empty lives with a messianic fervor to go out and conquer and convert the heathens.

And the heathens are us.

Oh, there are different leftist sects. There are the social justice warriors who have manufactured a bizarre mythology and scripture of oppression, privilege, and intersectionality. Instead of robes, they dress up as genitals and kill babies as a blasphemous sacrament. Then there are the pagan weather religion oddballs convinced that the end is near and that we must repent by turning in our SUVs. Of course, the “we” is really “us” – high priests of the global warming cult like Leonardo DiCaprio will still jet around the world with supermodels while we do the ritual sacrificing of our modern comforts. Then there are the ones who simply worship themselves, the elitists who believe that all wisdom and morality has been invested in them merely because they went to the right college, think the right thoughts, and sneer at anyone living between I-5 and I-95.

They can’t. Their sick ideology and false theology requires that we be enslaved or exterminated – we can’t be tolerated, and we certainly can’t be allowed to hold the reins of power. I hoped that my novel People’s Republic, about what lies at the bottom of this blood-soaked slippery slope, would be rendered moot by the GOP’s victory in November. I was wrong. The Left has redoubled its efforts.

So the only outcome is that one side wins and the other loses. There’s no truce to be had, no possibility of a tie. And the frightening thing is that the Left is so foolish, so stuck in its bubble that it has no understanding that it can only push so far before the people with all the guns and all the training push back. That’s the problem with kids who were raised on participation trophies and who never got into a fistfight – they don’t consider the possibility that they will lose, and lose hard.


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10/01/2017 12:25

An Obiturary Of Stark Harsh Truth

You can say one thing for New York Times columnist Ross Douthat. He knows how to write an obit.

 

Early Hef had a pipe and suit and a highbrow reference for every occasion; he even claimed to have a philosophy, that final refuge of the scoundrel. But late Hef was a lecherous, low-brow Peter Pan, playing at perpetual boyhood — ice cream for breakfast, pajamas all day — while bodyguards shooed male celebrities away from his paid harem and the skull grinned beneath his papery skin.

This late phase was prettied up by reality television’s “The Girls Next Door,” which kept the orgies offstage and relied on the girlfriends’ mix of desperation, boredom and charisma for its strange appeal. The behind-the-scenes accounts were rather grimmer: depression and drugs, “dirty hallway carpets and the curtains that smell like dog piss,” the chance to wait while Hef “picked the dog poo off the carpet — and then ask for our allowance.”

Needless to say the obituaries for Hefner, even if they acknowledge the seaminess, have been full of encomia for his great deeds: Hef the vanquisher of puritanism, Hef the political progressive, Hef the great businessman and all the rest. There are even conservative appreciations, arguing that for all his faults Hef was an entrepreneur who appreciated the finer things in life and celebrated la difference.

What a lot of garbage. Sure, Hefner supported some good causes and published some good writers. But his good deeds and aesthetic aspirations were ultimately incidental to his legacy — a gloss over his flesh-peddling, smeared like Vaseline on a pornographer’s lens. The things that were distinctively Hefnerian, that made him influential and important, were all rotten, and to the extent they were part of stories that people tend to celebrate, they showed the rot in larger things as well.

,,,

The social liberalism he championed was the rotten and self-interested sort, a liberalism of male and upper-class privilege, in which the strong and beautiful and rich take their pleasure at the expense of the vulnerable and poor and not-yet-born.

The online future his career anticipated was the rotten side of the internet — the realms of onanism and custom-tailored erotica, where the male vanity and entitlement he indulged has curdled into resentment and misogyny.

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10/01/2017 12:08

Will Take MSN Years to Find the Motive

A man shouting 'Allahu Akbar' has stabbed two women to death with a butcher's knife before being gunned down by soldiers in Marseille. 

The victims, aged 17 and 20, suffered horrific injuries during the 'frenzied' attack, with one slashed in the throat and the other stabbed in the chest and stomach.

Eyewitnesses told how a man 'dressed in black' launched himself at the two women, who screamed for their lives as others ran for safety.

The assailant was gunned down by soldiers who were on patrol inside Saint Charles train station at the time as part of France's ongoing state of emergency.

A police source said the suspect was known to authorities for common law crimes and analysis of their fingerprints came up with several aliases. 

Anti-terror officials said they were investigating 'links to a terrorist organisation' and the 'attempted killing of a public official', the identity of which is currently unknown. 

Photographs from the scene showed a woman lying on the ground and armed police standing over the attacker. A white sheet was later placed over his body. 




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09/30/2017 8:49

This is Significant

The moment was comical but also insightful, underscoring just how little Washington’s political class knows about who holds the executive power in the Northeast.

Here’s the surprising truth: It’s not the Democrats.

Last November, while most of the country was either cheering Donald Trump’s presidential win or making an appointment with their therapist about how to cope with the results, New Englanders in four out of the region’s six “blue” states — Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Maine — woke up the next morning with four Republican governors.

Three of those governorships flipped from blue to red. It was a trend that the Northeast had not seen for a generation, but it received little national attention. (Connecticut and Rhode Island hold their governorship elections in 2018.)

If the reverse had happened, and four Democrats had won governorships in deep red states last year, the news would have been treated quite differently, said Brad Todd, a Washington, DC-based GOP strategist.

“It would have been on the front pages of every major newspaper in the country. And debated for weeks about how it spells the demise of the Republican Party,” Todd said.

Vermont’s Scott won in a landslide, defeating his Democratic opponent by 9 percentage points while facing two political fronts that should have knocked him out of contention: the candidacy of Trump, who was so unpopular in Vermont he got crushed there by 29 percentage points; 

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09/30/2017 5:10

Finding the Truth About Puerto Rico

No, Trump Didn't Botch the Puerto Rico Crisis


TH: So, it seems like everybody has blasted Trump administration's response to the Puerto Rico crisis. Has that criticism been fair?

JH: No, I don’t think so. First of all, there was a fair amount of anticipatory action that is not being recognized. Amphibious ships, including the light amphibious carriers Kearsarge and Wasp and the amphibious landing ship dock Oak Hill were at sea and dispatched to Puerto Rico ahead of the hurricane’s impact.

These are large ships that have large flight decks to land and dispatch heavy-lift CH-53 helicopters to and from disaster sites. They also have big well-decks -- exposed surfaces that are lower than the fore and aft of the ship -- from which large landing craft can be dispatched to shore carrying over 150 tons of water, food and other supplies on each trip. These are actually the ideal platforms for relief operations owing to their range of assets. The ships, due to their designs to support Marine amphibious landings in war zones, also have hospitals onboard to provide medical treatment on a large scale. That these ships were in the area should be viewed as a huge positive for the administration and the Department of Defense.

TH: On the flip side, others say that sending the hospital ship Comfortwas unnecessary -- purely symbolic and possibly counterproductive -- given that the number of hospital beds was not the problem. What's your opinion? 

JH: Comfort can add to the solution, but her lack of well-decks and large boats as well as her limited support of helicopter operations means that she has to go alongside a pier to be effective. In the immediate aftermath of a huge storm, pulling into a port that has not been surveyed for underwater obstacles like trees or cables or other refuse is an invitation to either put a hole your ship or foul your propellers or rudders.

That being said, there was a broad misunderstanding of the Comfort’s mission. She is not an “emergency response ship” but rather a hospital ship. She was built to accompany a large military force into a war zone as part of a buildup over time of capabilities to respond to wartime injuries. She is manned by military and civilian mariners as well as active and reserve medical personnel. It takes time to both man and equip her for sea. Given that there was no certainty where the hurricane would hit, it doesn’t make sense to have readied her prior to its impact.

It is revelatory of where the U.S. group mind is now that when the American public thinks about ships like the Comfort and Mercy, they automatically think of them as part of a civilian emergency response force rather than quietly considering the type of potential conflict that would require a hospital ship with 1,000 beds. I can tell you that when I think of those ships, I internally shudder at the thought of the type of conflict they were intended to support.


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09/30/2017 11:07

62% Of NFL Fans Plan To Watch Less Football

A new Yahoo Finance poll suggests the NLF has an enduring problem on its hands. Nearly 62% of 9,056 respondents told us they plan to watch less pro football in response to the anthem controversy. Thirty-six percent said they plan to buy less NFL merchandise, and 32% have chosen not to attend a game they would otherwise have gone to. Those findings all have financial implications for the NFL and its 32 team owners.

We wanted to limit our survey, conducted online via Survey Monkey from Sept. 28-29, to people who patronize the NFL, and exclude people who have an opinion but don’t watch football. So we only counted answers from people who describe themselves as pro football fans. Eighty-eight percent of respondents said they watch at least one game per week, with 46% of those saying they watch more than two games.

(Bad news for the NFL) 

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09/30/2017 10:33

Trump's Judicial Nominations are Five-Star

So far, Trump’s presidency has not put that caveat to the test. But President Trump is winning big on judicial nominations. He’s nominating outstanding men and women, and most of them seem destined to be confirmed.

This week, Trump made four nominations to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. The four are Don Willett, James Ho, Kyle Duncan, and Kurt Engelhardt.

Willett is a judge on the Texas Supreme Court. He made the list of judges considered by Trump for the Supreme Court slot eventually filled by Neil Gorsuch. Ho succeeded Ted Cruz as Solicitor General of Texas. Ilya Shapiro praises Willet and Ho here.

Kyle Duncan was Louisiana’s Solicitor General and, since leaving that post, has been called back to represent the state as special counsel. He has extensive experience as an appellate advocate. Duncan was the lead lawyer arguing for Hobby Lobby stores in the 2014 Supreme Court case that successfully challenged Obamacare’s contraceptive mandate. Carrie Severino endorses the Duncan nomination here.

(But the GOP also needs to get those judges approved. Democrats will fight them tooth and nail)

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09/30/2017 8:06

Captain Obvious

Today’s Binyamin Applebaum’s story on how Trump’s tax cut plan helps the rich, this sentence appears:

The plan would not benefit lower-income households that do not pay federal income taxes.

So let’s see: a tax cut doesn’t help people who don’t pay taxes. Whoa! What a concept! Let that sink in a minute. Next the Times will be telling us that gravity affects heavy objects—including large rocks! Sunglasses won’t protect you from the glare of the sun—at night!

(I always assumed a tax cut would not help people who did not pay taxes. It's not a revelation.)

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09/29/2017 7:30

At Times Free Speech Costs Money

The NFL’s protests against the national anthem are causing fans to reassess their interests in football, but the protests also seem to be causing investors to reconsider their investments in the league as well.

JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s Shawn Quigg is now encouraging investors to stay away from investing in CBS stock ahead of the NFL’s Week 4 broadcasts, according to Bloomberg.

“The bank recommends buying an option that gives you the right to sell the shares at $57.50 on the likelihood that the stock will fall below that price after the company discloses ratings for the games. CBS closed at $58 on Tuesday,” Bloomberg noted.

The analyst also cited jersey sales, saying that if the NFL is going to take a hit, jersey sales may be a leading indicator.

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09/29/2017 7:06

Who Knew Dr. Seuss was a Racist?

Surely, no one would think to politicize this simple gesture from the first lady, right?

Meet Cambridgeport Elementary School librarian Liz Phipps Soeiro, who rejected the donation this week in an extraordinarily condescending and ungracious open letter to the first lady.

"[S]chool libraries around the country are being shuttered. Cities like Philadelphia, Chicago, and Detroit are suffering through expansion, privatization, and school "choice" with no interest in outcomes of children, their families, their teachers, and their schools," she wrote on the Horn Book's Family Reading blog.

Soeiro, who works as a library media specialist, added, "Why not go out of your way to gift books to underfunded and underprivileged communities that continue to be marginalized and maligned by policies put in place by Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos? … [M]y school doesn't have a NEED for these books."

Hold onto your hats. It gets wilder from here:

And then there's the matter of the books themselves. You may not be aware of this, but Dr. Seuss is a bit of a cliché, a tired and worn ambassador for children's literature. … Dr. Seuss's illustrations are steeped in racist propaganda, caricatures, and harmful stereotypes. Open one of his books (If I Ran a Zoo or And to Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street, for example), and you'll see the racist mockery in his art.

It's true: Seuss' anti-Japanese cartoons during World War II have all the subtlety and nuance of Mickey Rooney's performance in "Breakfast At Tiffany's," but it's insane that someone would relegate the author's entire body of work to the dustbin of history for that reason alone. What a shame it would be to deprive children of the joy found in the vocabulary, rhyme and meter found in Seuss' books. What a shame it would be to deprive them of the beautiful and big-hearted lessons found in books like Horton Hears a Who, the Lorax or the Butter Battle Book.

(Social Justice trolls look for racism everywhere and make sure they find it)

 

 

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09/29/2017 6:44

Jeh Johnson: The 2016 election wasn't hacked

Jeh Johnson told lawmakers Thursday he's unaware of any evidence showing cyberattacks affected voting in the 2016 presidential election.

But, the former secretary of homeland security said it's a concerning future possibility.

"The integrity of our election outcomes on a national level dances on the head of a pin," he told an election security task force assembled by congressional Democrats. "If writers of the TV series ‘House of Cards' can figure that out, then a lot of other people can do the same."

Johnson, who led the Department of Homeland Security during President Obama's second term, said 33 states approached the department to seek cybersecurity assistance ahead of the November vote, along with officials from cities and counties.

"I know of no evidence that last year ballots were altered or votes were suppressed through a cyberattack, but last year's experience exposed certain cyber vulnerabilities in our election infrastructure," Johnson told the panel.

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09/28/2017 4:57

NFL Ticket Sales Are Down

Online ticket re-seller TickPick told Paul Bedard at the Washington Examinerthat NFL sales for week three games have dropped nearly 18 percent since prior to Trump’s statement.

According to the Examiner, TickPick cited two numbers damning to the NFL’s response to Trump and the recent national anthem controversy:

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09/28/2017 2:36

U.S. born Muslims more hostile to America

And U.S.-born Muslims are more likely than their immigrant counterparts to say there is discrimination against Muslims, and to say they have personally experienced at least one of several specific types of discrimination, such as people acting suspicious of them or calling them offensive names, being singled out by airport security or by some other law enforcement, or being physically attacked or threatened.

Nine-in-ten (91%) U.S.-born Muslims say there is a lot of discrimination against Muslims, compared with 65% of immigrants who say this. And six-in-ten U.S.-born Muslims (61%) say that in the past 12 months they have experienced at least one of the specific types of discriminatory behavior asked about in the survey, compared with 39% of immigrants who say this.

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09/28/2017 1:54

Trump Winning War on Regulations

On the latter matter, his actions set a historic precedent. That is likely good for the economy and may help explain the surging stock market.

“There’s a massive movement on regulations in the first few months of Trump,” says David Ranson, director of research at HCWE & Co.

How massive? As Mr. Trump might say, it’s Bigly.

In the first place, the administration isn’t producing a ton of new regulations.

“By virtually any measure, dating back through two Democratic presidents and one Republican president, the lack of regulatory output is historic,” states a recent study by the American Action Forum, a right-leaning think tank.

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09/28/2017 10:28

Great Again

The U.S. economy grew a bit faster than previously estimated in the second quarter, recording its quickest pace in more than two years, but the momentum probably slowed in the third quarter as Hurricanes Harvey and Irma temporarily curbed activity.

Gross domestic product increased at a 3.1 percent annual rate in the April-June period, the Commerce Department said in its third estimate on Thursday. The upward revision from the 3.0 percent rate of growth reported last month reflected a slightly faster pace of inventory investment.

Growth last quarter was the quickest since the first quarter of 2015 and followed a 1.2 percent pace in the January-March period. Economists had expected that the second-quarter GDP growth rate would be unrevised at 3.0 percent.

 

Harvey, which struck Texas, has been blamed for much of the decline in retail sales, industrial production, homebuilding and home sales in August. Further weakness is anticipated in September after Irma slammed into Florida early this month.

Rebuilding is, however, expected to boost GDP growth in the fourth quarter and in early 2018. Estimates for the growth rate in the July-September period are just above 2.2 percent.

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09/28/2017 9:30

Illegal Immigrant Crime Wave

The federal government can tell you how many "Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islanders" stole a car, the precise number of "American Indian or Alaska Natives" who were arrested for vagrancy or how many whites were busted for counterfeiting in any given year. But the government agencies that crunch crime numbers are utterly unable -- or unwilling -- to pinpoint for the public how many illegal immigrants are arrested within U.S. borders each year.

In the absence of comprehensive data, FoxNews.com examined a patchwork of local, state and federal statistics that revealed a wildly disproportionate number of murderers, rapists and drug dealers are crossing into the U.S. amid the wave of hard-working families seeking a better life. The explosive figures show illegal immigrants are three times as likely to be convicted of murder as members of the general population and account for far more crimes than their 3.5-percent share of the U.S. population would suggest. Critics say it is no accident that local, state and federal governments go to great lengths to keep the data under wraps.

"There are a lot of reasons states don’t make this information readily available, and there is no clearinghouse of data at high levels," said former Department of Justice attorney J. Christian Adams, who has conducted exhaustive research on the subject. "These numbers would expose how serious the problem is and make the government look bad.”

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09/28/2017 7:37

Who Leaked the Fake News Story That Obama Lectured Mark Zuckerberg About Russia

The whole story might make Americans nostalgic for Mitt Romney... the man Obama dismissed as insane for warning that Russia would be America's primary geopolitical foe. Furthermore, Obama and Rice were warned about Russian meddling in 2014 ... and did nothing.

Of course, there is another potential culprit for the fake news leak to WaPo — a man who has been described (by The New York Times, no less) as the "master shaper and retailer of Obama's foreign policy narratives."

That's right, ladies and gentlemen — Ben Rhodes, the speechwriter without any foreign policy, military, or international experience who became Obama's deputy national security advisor for strategic communications, was in Lima, Peru with Obama and Rice. He did not sit in the meeting with Zuckerberg, but he likely knew everything — or almost everything — about it.

Indeed, the speechwriter responsible for selling the horrifically dangerous and naive Iran nuclear deal seems a perfect match for the leaker behind the fake WaPo story.

There is even one more reason to suspect Rhodes. While Rice was a direct witness of the meeting between Obama and Zuckerberg, Rhodes was one step removed. If a leaker wanted plausible deniability after his or her story was revealed to be false, Rhodes would have that deniability. He was traveling with Obama and Rice but did not sit in the actual room with Zuckerberg.

If Rice is the leaker, she has been caught in a lie. If it's Rhodes, he can at least say, "Well, Rice told me Obama mentioned Russia."

Whoever the source for the Post's story, his or her credibility has taken a major hit. Or at least, it would have — if the mainstream media were not in thrall to the former administration.

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09/28/2017 7:19

Despite Media Narrataive Relief is Being Sent to PR

The message was clear: Trump was doing nothing to help Puerto Rico (based on liberal bias and tweets).

As it turns out, it was the media ignoring Puerto Rico—not Trump.

PBS’s John Yang spoke to Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossello about the help he has received from the states. Rosselo immediately said he was “very grateful for the administration” and that “they have responded quickly.”

“The president has been very attentive to the situation, personally calling me several times,” Rossello said. “FEMA and the FEMA director have been here in Puerto Rico twice. As a matter of fact, they were here with us today, making sure that all the resources in FEMA were working in conjunction with the central government.”

He asked Congress to quickly provide an aid package to the island.

Politico reported, “Rossello and other officials praised the federal government for planning its response in detail before the storm hit, a contrast with what Puerto Rico has long seen as the neglect of 3.4 million Americans living in a territory without a vote in Congress or the electoral college.”

Tweets mean nothing. It takes no effort at all to send one. Acting like Trump actually spent all day Monday caring about the NFL because of what he tweeted is absurd. Does the media really think all he does is tweet? It sure seems like it. They would rather write dozens of articles about every single one of the president’s tweets than look into what he’s actually doing.

Or maybe they can’t. Maybe [the press’s] humping President Barack Obama’s leg for eight years has made the current Republican administration unwilling to share as much information, because they know it’ll be spun negatively.

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09/28/2017 6:41

Restaurants Are Turning Their TVs OFF To The NFL

Restaurants across the country are boycotting the NFL by refusing to broadcast the games on TV until protests end, following the uproar over athletes refusing to stand for the national anthem.

Many restaurant owners are responding to NFL players that kneeled out of protest to the national anthem during Sunday games by shutting off TVs in their businesses, abc33 reported. Their actions come after President Donald Trump denounced the protests and told sports fans to never condone their actions.

“When this show of disrespect ends we will be happy to show this product on [sic] our restaurant again,” Borio’s Restaurant in Cicero, N.Y. said in a statement

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09/27/2017 9:19

Networks didn't show booing fans in football coverage

With President Donald Trump's attacks against protesting NFL players still reverberating, the league's TV partners decided to air live coverage of the national anthem before Week 3 games. Those partners left out a key element of the coverage: crowd shots of angry fans.

Networks typically do not televise the national anthem except for the Super Bowl and other special occasions, but they recognized there would be intense viewer interest this past weekend.

Some fans, if they reacted at all, happily clapped and cheered during protests, but others did not, and they angrily let their home teams know it. The audio mics picked up the boos. Yet the TV networks mostly avoided crowd shots Sunday, so there was never a chance for viewers to see fans jeering players.

(This is not really surprising, is it?)

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