Links for 11-9-2017

Links for 7-1-2016

  • Today is the 100th anniversary of the Battle of the Somme, and The Telegraph produced an excellent real time account of what happened.

  • Attorney General Loretta Lynch won’t appoint a special prosecutor in the Hillary Clinton case despite her meeting with Bill Clinton, and said this about the FBI investigators and their report: “I fully expect to accept their recommendations.” She went on: “The final determination as to how to proceed will be contained within the recommendations in the report, in whatever format the team puts it together. That has not been resolved. There will be a review of their investigation. There will be a review of what they have found and determined to have happened and occurred, and there will be their determinations as to how they feel that the case should proceed.” Lots of words signifying nothing. Perhaps Bill Clinton trained her?

  • Hillary Clinton will reportedly meet with the FBI tomorrow.

  • The TSA is keeping you safe by beating up and arresting a disabled 19 year old girl who was returning home from St. Jude’s Hospital.

  • Remy celebrates the Fourth of July by explaining how terrorist attacks result in ordinary American citizens losing their civil liberties:

  • Donald Trump is whining that his primary opponents won’t endorse him, prompting this from Kevin Williamson:

    Trump is out whining like the spoiled little princess he is and always has been that his fellow Republican presidential contenders, having been vanquished, are not making good on their promise to support the GOP nominee, presumably himself. Trump is of course absolutely correct that Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, et al. did make that promise, and that to withhold their support now would constitute violating a solemn promise made in public to their supporters.

    Breaking that promise is absolutely the right thing to do.

    We allow for a certain amount of cynical calculation in politicians — politics ain’t beanbag, as Dooley says. It may be that Senator Cruz and Governor Kasich made that primary-debate promise to support the eventual nominee in the hope — in the idiotic, forlorn hope — that the Republican primary electorate would not be so backward and malevolent as to choose an imbecilic game-show host to the left of Hillary Rodham Clinton on most of the relevant issues of our time over a slew of solid and impressive if imperfect conservatives. I can see Ted Cruz reenacting the final scene of Planet of the Apes: “You maniacs! You did it!” Of course he didn’t think that Sean Hannity’s tangerine dream would become America’s Creamsicle nightmare, but here we are.

  • Nearly one million immigrants are ignoring deportation orders, and more than 170,000 of them are convicted criminals.

  • Josh Craddock argues that pro-lifers need to abandon their approach of working within the confines of Supreme Court decisions:

    The Hellerstedt decision reaffirmed that any significant impediment to abortion will be struck down under the existing judicial regime, even regulations designed to keep abortion “safe, legal, and rare” (a goal that has been embarrassingly adopted by many pro-life leaders). Such regulations, even if upheld, merely serve to sanitize abortion in the public eye. “At least there are no more Gosnells,” the well-intentioned public might say, as the local abortionist with hospital admitting privileges commits the same atrocities legally in a regulated clinic.

    Those who are serious about ending abortion need to acknowledge that laboring within the confines of Casey is futile. Hellerstedt proves that approach will never achieve abolition. We cannot satisfy ourselves with petty regulations on abortion that trim the abortion weed while strengthening its root.

    Later:

    The Supreme Court has long since undermined its own legitimacy as a fair and neutral arbiter. Last year’s ruling in Obergefell, as well as so many others, have exposed the Court as nothing more than another political branch—a robed oligarchy that has unconstitutionally aggrandized itself through the false doctrine of judicial supremacy and cloaked its unconstrained willfulness in the language of law.

    Later still:

    This naked power grab presents elected and appointed leaders with an opportunity to disregard and resist the Court’s unjust and illegitimate rulings. Although we ought not lightly upend our judicial system, there comes a time when gross disregard for human life and for our constitutional order should stir us from docile obedience and impel us to resistance.

  • Jonah Goldberg has an idea:

    The federal government needs to compile a list of women who shouldn’t be allowed to get abortions. The criteria for getting on the list must be flexible. If an official at, say, the NIH or FBI think that a woman should be a mother for some reason or other, he or she can block an abortion. Maybe the woman has great genes or a high IQ or the sorts of financial resources we need in parents. Let’s leave that decision where it belongs: in the hands of the government.

    Heck, there’s really no reason even to tell women if they’re on the “no abort” list. Let them find out at the clinic. And if they go in for an abortion only to discover they are among the million or more people on the list, there will be no clear process for getting off it, even if it was a bureaucratic error or case of mistaken identity.

  • Speaker of the House Paul Ryan scheduled a gun control vote for next week, and Brian Darling writes that this is yet another example of why Republicans lose.

  • Senator Sheldon Whitehouse claims the U.S. Navy is evaluating its base commanders on their belief in climate change and how they communicate its effects. If true, this explains a lot.

  • President Obama signed a bill that restructures Puerto Rico’s $70 billion debt and establishes an oversight board that’s supposed to steer the island out of its financial crisis. Puerto Rico still defaulted on a $1.9 billion general obligation bond payment today. Mario Loyola explains how federal government laws and regulations contributed to Puerto Rico’s predicament.

  • Two years of low oil prices pushed American shale oil producers to improve efficiency, and they’ve managed to stretch the output from shale wells significantly. In the Permian Basin in 2013, output from the average shale oil well dropped 28% four months after reaching peak production; in 2015 that was down to 18%.

  • U.S. intelligence agencies have identified nine training camps in Iran run by the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps that train Afghans to fight in Syria.

  • Austria’s Constitutional Court ordered the country’s presidential runoff election be re-run because mail-in ballots were mishandled during the last election.

  • Turkey’s parliament approved a law that restructures the country’s two highest courts. Most of the 711 judges on those two courts will be removed, giving President Recep Tayyip Erdogan an opportunity to stack the courts in his favor.

Links for 6-9-2015

Links for 6-3-2015

  • One of Rush Limbaugh’s callers came out as a black man:

    RUSH: This has to be hell because here you are, you’re Caucasian, but you know you’re black, but nobody can see that you’re black, so nobody can see who you really are.

    CALLER: Exactly.

    RUSH: And you’re desperate to be seen who you really are. You’re desperate to be known for who you really are. You’re not an actor. You want to be known for who you are. You know you’re black, but nobody can tell it. And you go tell people you’re black, and they think you’re nuts, right?

    CALLER: Right. I mean, I’ve signed up for, like, minority grants and that sort of thing, and, you know, they all just laugh at me.

  • Liberal ideology and the transgender movement aren’t compatible:

    For years, a major aim of the sexual revolution has been to deconstruct gender differences as being “social constructs,” mere cultural projections of what maleness and femaleness are and mean. This critique evacuated gender of any physical meaning and reduced it to an existential feeling — a feeling of being male or female, regardless of one’s sexual biology.

    The effect of this critique has been to relativize gender, and thus to abolish it as a meaningful category. Because you can no longer tie “femaleness” to a normative set of traits or acts (for example, wearing dresses or marrying men), the category itself cannot help but lose its meaning. To call any particular act a “male” or “female” act would be to revert back to antiquated, repressive, patriarchal norms—norms that only serve to foster social inequality.

    This is the ideology that governs liberal sexual philosophy, and it collides head-on with major aspects of the transgender movement. Transgenderism is unavoidably based on a kind of gender essentialism. It recognizes gender identities as being associated with certain socially accepted norms. What does it mean, for example, that Jenner’s “gender” is female? It means that he gets a sex change. It means that he poses in traditionally female attire for the cover of Vanity Fair. It means that he reaffirms traditional gender norms, even as he attempts to flee from them.

  • Lincoln Chafee is running for president as a Democrat. His campaign platform includes switching to the metric system.

  • Hillary Clinton’s lawyers are challenging voting integrity measures in several battleground states. These lawsuits are primarily campaign stunts, but I’m sure they’re interested in cheating at the polls, too.

  • Boston police shot and killed an Islamist, Usaamah Rahim, who threatened them with a knife. Rahim reportedly intended to behead Pamela Geller, but settled for attacking an easier target, the police.

  • Kevin Williamson wrote this about the TSA’s extraordinary incompetence:

    And on Monday, the acting chief of the TSA, Melvin Carraway, was transferred to a comfortable new sinecure (he’ll be at Homeland Security’s office of state and local law enforcement) after he successfully discovered the answer to a question that has puzzled White House watchers: What does it take to embarrass the Obama administration? In this case, it was revelations that 95 percent of explosives and weapons intentionally sent into the TSA apparatus for the purpose of testing its efficacy went undetected. Which is to say, when it comes to detecting bombs and guns, the TSA’s success rate was found to be approximately 5 percent. A chimpanzee taking the LSAT does better than that.

  • Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval signed an education savings account bill into law:

    When Nevada parents remove their child from her assigned district school, the state takes 90 percent of the statewide average basic support per pupil (about $5,100) and instead deposits it into a private, restricted-use bank account. The family can then use those funds to purchase a wide variety of educational products and services, such as textbooks, tutoring, educational therapy, online courses, and homeschool curricula, as well as private school tuition. Low-income students and students with special needs receive 100 percent of the statewide average basic support per pupil (about $5,700). Unspent funds roll over from year to year.

  • Someone shot up a campaign minibus belonging to Turkey’s pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), killing the driver. There’s a parliamentary election on June 7 and the HDP is hoping to win enough votes to clear the 10% threshold required to win seats.

  • ISIS is using water as a weapon in Iraq by closing the gates of a dam on the Euphrates River.

Links for 6-1-2015

Links for 5-13-2015

Links for 8-22-2014