38 Responses

  1. Have a great 4th, y’all.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Happy Independence Day!

    Liked by 1 person

    • A little curious news for America’s birthday:

      Pentagon Considers Canceling Program That Recruits Immigrant Soldiers
      By RICHARD GONZALES • 2 HOURS AGO

      The Pentagon is considering pulling out of a deal it made with thousands of noncitizen recruits with specialized skills: Join the military and we’ll put you on the fast track to citizenship.

      The proposal to dismantle the program would cancel enlistment contracts for many of the foreign-born recruits, leaving about 1,000 of them without legal protection from deportation.

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  3. Happy Independence Day. I usually like to write something special for this day, but I got nothing this year. From James Madison, Thomas Jefferson, and Alexander Hamilton to Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. What a difference 241 years makes.

    Enjoy the BBQ. Keep the grill hot, cleaned, and oiled, and your food won’t stick. Words of wisdom on our nation’s birthday.

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    • I think there is at least one place where “originalism” (as in what was the intent of the drafters of the Constitution where the words are not specific or clear) and “textualism” (as in don’t read into a statute something that isn’t there) overlap, and it is a big one.

      “Commerce” in 1789 generally meant the trade and movement of goods, as separate from the actions of production, such as manufacturing and farming. The clause did not stand alone and Marshall was certainly deferential to Congress, but I think the originalist theory is strongest against the expansion post 1937 [e.g., our reaction to Wickard v.Filburn). Still, even taking the narrower textual definition, “trade” would include the sale from producer to wholesaler, the sale from wholesaler to retailer, and the sale from retailer to consumer. So it was pretty damned expansive to begin with, as was noted early on by Marshall.

      An Independence Day musing for this morning.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Just read this, linked at Ace. Good, if somewhat depressing, remembrance of the bicentennial.

    https://www.city-journal.org/html/spirit-76-14603.html

    This pervasive fractiousness, with which we are all so drearily familiar now, seemed less controlling in 1976—or maybe that is only the memory of one who was a child at the time. The Bicentennial gave the feeling of being swept up in a great commemoration, the magnitude of which united grownups who disagreed on other things. Today, it’s hard to find such unifying events; even national calamities only tear us further apart. And the very idea of cherishing America’s origins and celebrating its achievements looks quaint, naïve, or offensive to many, especially in a culture marinated in political correctness and self-aggrandizing judgments.

    At 240 years old, we’re accustomed to hearing about how angry we are and how discontented. Our governing classes combine an invincible devotion to self-preservation with scorn or ignorance of the country’s governing principles and contempt for its people, who are increasingly set against one another. This is bad enough for those of mature age, but it’s poison for the young. Anywhere a younger American looks, outside the military, he’s not likely to find the affirmations those of my generation still breathed as borrowed air, even if it was starting to thin.

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    • Ace is depressing to read on July 4th. Just the quotes of the founding fathers he uses are depressing. They’re all “we worked really hard for this, don’t be asshats and f*ck it all up.” And we clearly f*cked it all up. 😉

      Still a great country. Ultimately, I think the best we can expect as a human race is what we’ve got in terms of our western democracies. We can have America or the UK or Germany or France or Denmark or Canada, and those kinds of societies are our menu options. There’s no option that would actually give us Jefferson’s agrarian society of gentleman farmers, steeped in ancient literature and civics and well-informed on a wide swath of issues. As nice as that might be.

      Sort of like the argument that “we’ve never had a true socialist/Marxist/Communist” country. We’ve never had a pure *anything* country of more than a handful of people (and, digression: 60s and 70s era communes were pretty much pure Communism, and they all failed) … We have had as close to a pure socialist or Marxists or Communist country as human beings are able to get, and when human’s are the one’s doing it, they turn out awful. While in theory it might be possible to have a purely agrarian society of gentlemen farmers or libertarian society of hard-working entrepreneurs pulling themselves up by their boot straps, I don’t think large groups of humans are capable of executing such societies well.

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  5. The NYT frets that sports talk radio isn’t liberal enough…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Brent, actually not fretting. The article closes:

      That is a reason to tune in, and a reason for WFAN to continue its unlikely role as a home for right-of-center talk in New York City.

      Surprisingly broad minded!

      But as to Matthew Yglesias – that has to be April Fool in July. Lots of funny and pointed comments.

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      • well it certainly is a respite from the cultural marxism being peddled on ESPN and on the sports pages of papers like NYT and WaPo.

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        • Respite from cultural Marxism – the opinion piece was written by a regular contributor to The Federalist.

          Thus the attitudinal adjustment of the article from that of the Mother Ship.

          Liked by 1 person

        • I’m so glad I’m not into sports.

          I’m a big entertainment geek, tho, and that arena is mostly dominated by cultural marxists. Where it’s not, the “right” is more represented by conspiracy theorists, men’s rights activists, and general nutburgers. But I’ve got some stuff (Big Kev’s Geek Stuff, my favorite entertainment-y podcast, comes to mind) where the liberalism is more old-school and they generally keep it out of the show. I can respect that.

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  6. Economic illiteracy Level 9999

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    • “and let the Fed figure out how to make it work”

      Holy crap. He thinks the fed figures out . . . what? Everything a business does to run itself? That companies are just things the Fed makes? I mean, what?

      While I’d love to be paid $150 an hour, I feel like the economy would immediately be destroyed . . . and it would never happen. So I’m assuming that he meant $15 an hour. Although the argument still holds. What does the fed figure out in that scenario? How to create more unemployment offices as more jobs are automated and outsourced?

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  7. This should be interesting:

    “Bernie Sanders is the Democrats’ real 2020 frontrunner
    He’s staffing up, touring the country, and still drawing record crowds.
    Updated by Matthew Yglesias
    Jul 5, 2017, 8:01am EDT”

    https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/7/5/15802616/bernie-sanders-2020

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    • “Bernie Sanders is the Democrats’ real 2020 frontrunner…”

      Good grief.

      My Monday night men’s group unanimously wants Kasich to be the R nominee and a centrist D who is younger than all of us in the group by at least 15 years. Back to safe-it-doesn’t-really-matter-who-we-elect because they are competent and dull and gentlemanly, with good public speaking skills and the ability not to piss off half the nation every day, and who are willing to work hard and deal with a Congress dominated by either party. And who don’t draw red lines, in Syria or NK or anywhere, that they have no intention of backing up.

      Trump v. Sanders? Either might lose. Nobody would win. Dementia is a looming possibility for men in their middle 70s.

      I’ll be 74 next month. Don’t ask me any hard questions.

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      • “I’ll be 74 next month. Don’t ask me any hard questions.”

        You’re taking your Vitamin D and getting your B12 levels checked, right?

        My dad’s dementia could almost certainly have been pushed back with regular exercise (never going to happen) and b12 and Vitamin D supplementation. When he started on the B12 he had a short return to cogency and mobility, then relapsed. Too late, I guess.

        Anyhoo . . . make sure you keep an eye on the B12. The body’s ability to metabolize tends to fall off when you’re older so oral supplements, at least, and preferable regular shots. Stay cogent indefinitely!

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        • You’re taking your Vitamin D and getting your B12 levels checked, right?

          Thanks for your concern – and yes, I exercise and take supplements that include B12 and D. B12 is truly important at my age – especially coupled with working out.

          Liked by 1 person

      • As a rule, incumbents don’t lose. For Republican incumbents who were not VP’s in the immediately preceding Presidential term, Hoover was the last incumbent to lose.

        History says Trump will be a 2-termer barring a depression.

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        • Incumbents have the power of the bully pulpit. I think he’s more likely to lose than most incumbents, but the Democrats would have to run a kick-ass campaign and GoTV, and 2016 suggests they have no idea how to do that.

          All it will take to keep Trump in office is a contentious primary season for the Dems, or a super-weak HRC-style campaign.

          Again, I wouldn’t be surprised to see an electoral/popular vote divergence, because of California.

          Carter lost, too, if you recall. And after the Democrats holding the Whitehouse for only 1 term. I think they thing to look for is a serious primary challenge. George H.W. got primaried by Buchanan. Carter got primaried by Ted Kennedy. Ford got primaried by Reagan. A serious Republican primary challenge weakens the incumbent. Combine that with the Democrats getting their sh*t together, and they could win it easily.

          But them getting their sh*t together seems like a stretch.

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        • Fair points all. Democrats have had a difficult time getting elected twice after Roosevelt and before Clinton. Both Truman and Johnson couldn’t win a second term and chose not to run, both had wars ongoing as well. Carter had a particularly bad economy and a Cold War going quite poorly. For Republican incumbents who lost (who were not VP’s of an R President in the immediately preceding term), you have to go back to Hoover. There was a depression on.

          Also, George H. W. Bush winning at all was a testament to Reagan’s popularity.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Historicity in Trump’s favor: this is the Republican’s first term back in the WH after two-terms of Obama. Losing incumbents are often at the 2nd or 3rd term of their party holding the WH. 12 years of Reagan/Bush might have been what gave Buchanan the drive to launch a primary campaign. Who knows?

          But generally, the most secure you can be in the Whitehouse is, historically, to be in the first term of your party being back in power, and not be a former VP. 😉

          Trump is an outlier so that may skew some of the historical patterns off in new directions. But it means that no matter how hysterical the Democrats, the media, or my Facebook feed gets, he’s going to be in a powerful position and be very difficult to unseat.

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        • “Fair points all. Democrats have had a difficult time getting elected twice after Roosevelt and before Clinton.”

          It’s amazing any Democrats have every gotten elected at all! According to some folks over on the PL (especially lefty drive-bys) the Republicans have gerrymandered all the elections with their gerrymandering and also they cheat by using the electoral college instead of the popular vote, so even though the country always votes against them, they cheat and use the electoral college to win.

          And you can’t argue with those facts. Their solution: It’s time to abolish the electoral college. Not exactly sure how it’s done, but they are highly confident the first step is starting a change.org petition.

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    • I could see it if they had a Bernie Sanders who was 15/20 years younger. I think a better-mannered populist and quasi-anti-globalist would serve the Democrats well in a 2020 battle with Trump. The last thing they need is an HRC-redux. I like Kasich but I don’t see him ever winning the Republican primary through the Tea Party gauntlet.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Just like in 2016, if Warren runs Sanders will sit it out.

        If it’s McAuliffe or another DLC type as the front runner, then he’ll run again.

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        • My guess is Warren is the wrong populist to run against Trump. She’ll have some of the same gender problems Hillary had (too much energy devoted to Trump’s sexism and you being on the side of the sexists if you don’t vote for her, among other things–I have a hard time believing the first woman president will have won on her gender) and she really does get shrill. All someone has to do is point that out (which Trump will) and it will become a debate on misogyny, which will not serve the Democrats well.

          I also expect a lot more “stick it to the rich guys”, where there was plenty of that from Bernie there was also lots of “I’m gonna give you free stuff”. Which is the superior strategy ultimately.

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  8. CNN adopts doxing as a tactic.

    http://www.cnn.com/2017/07/04/politics/kfile-reddit-user-trump-tweet/index.html

    They may have just managed to discredit themselves in a way that Trump never could have on his own.

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    • How to become even more hated than you already are…

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    • I’m not sure CNN understands the kind of war they are getting themselves into. A doxing war with thousands of reditors is not smart.

      From the reditor’s apology: “I was trolling and posting things to get a reaction from the subs on reddit and never meant any of the hateful things I said in those posts”

      I’ve got mixed feelings about this. Primarily, it continues to marginalize CNN and make it look even worse. It’s becoming the Trump of television news networks: narcissistic and easily distracted.

      That being said, the trolling drives me nuts. I 100% believe these guys are way more sedate and inclusive and embracing of diversity in real life, but for whatever reason are addicted to stirring online reactions and starting Internet flame wars and playing a character. They don’t do anybody any favors, and I think the real reason this guy issues his apology was not the video but other things he’s done to stir controversy.

      Something about the apology doesn’t work, either. He apologizes for getting reddit “embroiled”, but he’s been spending his time stirring the pot with a bunch of racist crap he doesn’t remotely believe in order to get people worked up and start fights.

      The problem on the left is these trollers, who have their own weird psychological addiction to being online assh*les, are then used to buttress the worldview that America (and perhaps the world) is full of rabid racists, and the natural assumption that these jerks are your average Republican next door. Which is probably the opposite of the case, 99% of the time.

      That, and I also have a suspicion that some of the most rabidly racist online sites are basically honeypots. Perhaps ways for different groups to attract legit racists, or just large scale trolling efforts, but then used by the PL to represent all Americans that don’t think exactly like them.

      I dunno. I would kind of like these wastes-of-space to get called out (not necessarily for innocuous Trump videos) on their racist and bigoted posturing for troll-kicks. But I don’t think CNN is remotely the organization to do it.

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  9. The US military is on the verge of imposing the trans delusion on itself.

    http://thefederalist.com/2017/07/05/new-army-training-tells-female-soldiers-put-naked-men-showers/#disqus_thread

    I fully understand the point of having sex-segregated facilities. But can anyone explain any conceivable rationale for maintaining “gender” segregated facilities, if “gender” means simply a personal state of mind? If the army finds it acceptable to force females to room and shower with “women” who have dicks, why isn’t it acceptable to force females to room and shower with men who have a dicks?

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    • The Great American Military Social Engineering Project should really be suspended during Republican administrations.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve got no idea what the thinking is, but it’s definitely a sign that the military has way too much money, and far too much upper management, if this is the bs they’re spending their time on.

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      • KW:

        I’ve got no idea what the thinking is, but it’s definitely a sign that the military has way too much money, and far too much upper management, if this is the bs they’re spending their time on.

        I think it is a sign that they have the wrong people in upper management. In particular, Obama himself was the wrong guy to have in upper management of the armed forces, as he is the one who instigated these absurd and literally incoherent policies.

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    • There needs to be more discrimination. I don’t feel like we’d have trouble telling military guys and gals that their porn careers had to be put on hold while in the military, or their musical ambitions, or their desire to tour the country doing poetry readings. When you’re in the military, some shit just has to be put on hold. If you need to explore your gender and self-actualize, maybe that just needs to be done outside of the military.

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    • Ponder this: If you have ADHD, you are not eligible to serve. If you think you are a chick, you are eligible to serve…

      Liked by 1 person

      • Because one thing can’t be considered too likely to lead to distraction, while the other one, which doesn’t involve a current liberal self-actualization and whatever-normalization hobby horse, does not.

        Though both might indicate a potential lack of focus on the job at hand.

        Like

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