- Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court imposed a new U.S. House of Representatives district map that will probably cost Republicans four or five seats. Arguably the new map is more generous to Democrats than the one proposed by the state’s Democratic Party.
Criminals are engaging in complex scams where they hack tax preparation companies, file phony refund requests in their customers’ names, wait for the refunds to appear in their bank accounts, then pose as collection agents demanding that the money be “returned.”
In one version of the scam, criminals are pretending to be debt collection agency officials acting on behalf of the IRS. They’ll call taxpayers who’ve had fraudulent tax refunds deposited into their bank accounts, claim the refund was deposited in error, and threaten recipients with criminal charges if they fail to forward the money to the collection agency.
- Congressman Tom Rooney (R-FL) won’t run for re-election.
Victor Davis Hanson writes on “Understanding the California Mind”:
The postmodern 21st-century state media in its various manifestations is committed to social justice, not necessarily to disinterested reporting. Few read about environmental lawsuits over the planned pathway of a disruptive high-speed rail project; not so in the case of planned state nullification of offshore drilling.
In many news accounts, the race and ethnicity of a violent criminal are deduced in the cynical (and often quite illiberal) reader comments that follow. Is the newspaper deliberately suppressing news information to incite readership, who, in turn, through their commentaries flesh out the news that is not reported and simultaneously spike online viewership by their lurid outrage?
Folk wisdom in California translates into something along the following lines: an unidentified “suspect” in a drunk driving accident that leaves two dead on the side of the road can for some time remains unidentified; a local accountant of the wrong profile who is indicted by the IRS has his name and picture blared.
- Joel Kotkin writes on Silicon Valley dystopias:
What is occurring in Silicon Valley, being proposed in Toronto, and now implemented in China all points toward efforts by tech companies and governments to create new dense and data-driven cities that shape what the British academic David Lyon calls a “surveillance society,” where all of our data is shared with the governments and companies that use it to control us (PDF). In many ways these “cities” will be the opposite of the real thing, driven by a technological culture that, as David Byrne has suggested, substitutes spontaneous human interaction—the glory of the traditional city—with machine-driven interfaces.
- Syrian government forces reportedly plan to enter the fight in Afrin on the side of the Kurdish YPG, which prompted Turkey to threaten Syria’s government and call Vladimir Putin for help.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan advances his political career by promoting anti-Americanism and anti-Kurdish sentiment.
Seven Israelis were arrested on Sunday in what the police call “Case 4000,” a new investigation in which members of Netanyahu’s innermost circle are suspected of intervening with regulators to help the Bezeq group, an Israeli communications giant then run by a close friend of the prime minister, in exchange for favorable coverage of Netanyahu and his wife, Sara, on a news portal owned by the company.
Lila Rose for PragerU on “What You Need to Know About Planned Parenthood”: