LinkSwarm for December 9, 2016

December 9th, 2016

The Dallas police and fireman pension fund has halted withdrawals of money to halt a pension run to keep the system (temporarily) solvent. Texas municipal pension debt is a big story with a lot of different ramifications and angles, and I need to do some research before I post, hopefully sometime next week.

In the meantime, enjoy a Friday LinkSwarm:

  • Why they voted for Trump:

    Working-class Americans have been mocked, maligned, and forgotten long enough. They are fed up and they went to the voting booth last week and said so.

    This election’s “red state” vote had little to do with racism or any phobias. The message we heard last week was, rather, a clear and simple plea from the average blue-collar, small-town mother and father for Washington and other big-city elites to stop belittling, disparaging and vilifying them and their families. It was their way of telling the “know-it-alls”; the politicians and pundits, to stop flying over and driving past their gutted factories and dying towns and pretending they don’t exist and do not matter. They simply wanted the “smarter and more educated” city folks to know that they are tired of insults and that the condescension needs to stop. They voted for Trump because someone finally appeared to care and listen.

    They voted for Trump because he seemed to get it. Finally, someone seemed to understand that the average guy: the plumber, the carpenter, the truck driver, the farmer — the good and decent family man from Dewey, Oklahoma, and from Hillsdale, Michigan — is the one who is now suffering from more cultural disrespect than perhaps anyone else in all the country.

    They voted for Trump because they’re sick and tired of being laughed at. They voted for Trump because they have, frankly, “had it” with being labeled intolerable by those who claim to be tolerant. They voted for Trump because they think it’s deplorable that they are the ones being called “deplorables.”They voted for Trump because they can’t turn on the TV, listen to the radio or read the news without some highbrow elitist in the mainstream media calling them “low-information,” “uneducated white males” who are too dumb to know what’s best for them and too stupid to see that Washington knows best. They voted for Trump because all they want is to have a job, get some respect, pick up a paycheck, go to church, raise their kids and be left alone.

    This is why. This is the explanation.

    Hate had nothing to do with it.

    (Hat tip: Director Blue.)

  • Kurt Schlichter: “The liberals are truly going nuts, and it’s beautiful.”

    They recently resurrected Nancy Pelosi for another glorious term winnowing away the House Democrat caucus. Pretty soon it’s just going to be her and some guy representing Berkeley who they recruited while he was shouting “Workers of the world unite!” at bored coeds on Telegraph Avenue. You know, if you want to reach out to the kind of hard-working, salt-of-the-earth, normal Americans who voted for the black guy then allegedly refused to vote for the woman because they are racist, you totally want an ancient, rich, snooty, San Francisco leftist and Botox after-picture like the Nanster.

    The only way you could further alienate these alienated voters is, I don’t know, making your DNC chairman some radical leftist, urban black Muslim who hates guns, loves Farrakhan and who parties with Middle Eastern scumbags who issue fatwas to kill those voters’ soldier sons and daughters. Now, that’s some real diversity, and the Dems should totally get right on it. But seriously, we could never dare to hope that the Democrats would be that stupid. Could we?

    And I had to laugh at this, even a little guiltily:

    Next up at bat is the hard-4 hedgehog that is anti-gun activist and alleged comedian Amy Schumer, another over-praised, over-hyped mediocrity who Tinseltown is trying to force down our throats like the fingers she clearly never forced down hers.

  • Speaking of liberals going nuts, this Washington Post piece about how Trump’s election stole one woman’s sexual desire is an exemplar of the “Middle Aged Feminist Talks About How She’s Very Upset With Politics While Narcissisticly Sharing The Tedious Minutia of Her Life” piece.
  • “Liberals have migrated beyond observable reality into fantasyland.” (Hat tip: The Other McCain.)
  • Liberals prove once again how sane and generous they are by suggesting to let Tennessee wildfire victims burn because they voted for Trump.
  • The collapse of the political left:

    The rejection was apparent in the 2010 and subsequent House elections; Republicans have now won House majorities in ten of the last 12 elections, leaving 2006 and 2008 as temporary aberrations. You didn’t hear Hillary Clinton campaign on the glories of Obamacare or the Iran nuclear deal, and her attack on “Trumped-up, trickle-down economics” didn’t strike any chords in the modest-income Midwest.

    Republican success has been even greater in governor and state legislature elections, to the point that Democrats hold governorships and legislative control only in California, Hawaii, Delaware and Rhode Island. After eight years of the Obama presidency, Democrats hold fewer elective offices than at any time since the 1920s.

    (Hat tip: Director Blue.)

  • Hey, maybe liberals should use persuasion rather than automatically label everyone who disagrees with them racist. (Hat tip: Will Shetterly.)
  • Clintonistas are still bitching about Bernie Sanders, saying his challenge to their beloved Queen fatally wounded her. You know, the way Trump having a dozen primary challengers kept him from becoming President.
  • Piers Morgan (I know) on how Donald Trump pwns the media. “Every time they throw their high-minded journalistic toys out of their strollers at one of his tweets, Trump wins.” (Hat Tip: Borepatch.)
  • Trump is blessed by having weak opponents: “How influential did the press expect to be? It ran against Trump in the election and lost. Why should anybody inclined to support the president-elect — roughly half the country, you may recall — pay attention now to a press that has said the usual rules don’t apply? Again, the more the opposition was cranked up, the less effective it became.”
  • Outgoing Vice President Joe Biden says he’s running for President in 2020. It’s not like he would have done worse than Hillary did this year…
  • ObamaCare in one graphic. One big, depressing graphic…
  • Reminder: That “97% of scientists agree than man is causing climate change” factoid is false.
  • Ties between Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Islamist government and the Islamic State.
  • Are NGOs smuggling illegal aliens into Europe with the help of the EU?
  • With her poll ratings dropping, Angela Merkel suggests a burka ban. Such actions would be unnecessary if Merkel hadn’t brought the “refugee” crisis on in the first place.
  • Five Afghan “refugees” charged with raping a 15-year old boy in Sweden. Strangely enough, I don’t remember gay gang rapes of children in Sweden being in the news before the current wave of Islamic immigration…
  • Speaking of Afghan “refugees,” an EU official’s daughter was murdered by one.
  • What Trump’s Taiwan phone call means:

    When evaluating this unorthodox and, yes, risky move, one has to remember that it is China, not the United States, that has been rewriting the rules of engagement in the East and South China Sea. It is China that has been unilaterally asserting territorial claims against its neighbors, China asserting jurisdiction over international waters and air space, China failing to rein in the increasingly serious North Korean nuclear program. The power that is challenging the status quo in Asia is not the United States.

    (Hat tip: The Corner.)

  • Italy’s PM: Hey, give me near absolute power, because that’s never backfired on Italy before! Italy: Get stuffed!
  • In related news, actress Paola Saulino, who promised blow jobs for those who voted against the referendum, says she’s making good on her promise. What? You want pictures of Paola Saulino? Well, if you insist:

    And here are the dates for her “thank you” tour:

    I get the feeling the adoring crowds will make Black Friday look tame by comparison… (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)

  • Now India is confiscating gold and jewelry from political enemies targets of corruption probes.
  • Canada wants to criminalize pronouns. (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • If the New York Times wants to fight “fake news,” perhaps they should look in the mirror.
  • A guide to winning the media wars:

    We all know that independent websites taking Hillary to task on her very real and very deplorable track record of being a compulsive liar is what was truly decisive. The mainstream media knows this, which is why they haven’t actually been focusing on censoring provably fake news sites, but rather have been promoting an agenda to lump any non-establishment perspectives within the umbrella of “fake news” in order to destroy their competition and regain an upper hand in the national narrative. If those of us who value independent media want to thwart this nefarious plan, we need to fully understand what these cretins are up to.

  • 27-year male Clinton supporter hits 69 year old woman over the head with a chair. In his defense, he really does not look like the sharpest knife in the drawer:

    Or even the sharpest spoon…

  • More fake hate crimes.
  • The amnesty crowd is at it again.

    A DREAM Act 2.0 that addressed these problems — that prosecuted fraud, implemented enforcement, prevented downstream legal immigration, and focused much more narrowly on those who came very young — would possibly be something that even I, were I a congressman, might be able to vote for. But the lack of these elements is clear proof that the amnesty crowd isn’t interested in fixing the specific problem of a sympathetic but small group of people; rather, these young people are simply poster children who have been used for years to try to justify a general amnesty for all illegal aliens. And when the DREAM Act fails, as it will, Pedro Ramirez and his fellows will need to ask the pro-amnesty politicians and lobbying groups why they were sacrificed on the altar of “comprehensive immigration reform.”

  • Instapundit suggests downsizing imperial Washington:

    Donald Trump ran for president on the slogan “Make America Great Again!” And he’s also promised to “drain the swamp” in Washington. But maybe the way to do that is to make Washington a little less great. Because as Washington has prospered over the last several decades — to the point where people are making Hunger Games comparisons — the rest of the country hasn’t done as well.

    So perhaps it’s time for a role-reversal. I propose that over the next several years, we transfer a lot of federal employees out of the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, to parts of the country that aren’t doing so well economically. This would provide a boost to places like Buffalo, New York, or Quincy, Illinois, or Fresno, California, while getting federal bureaucrats out of the D.C. bubble.

  • Delusional liberal in Time suggests that people not pay their taxes while Trump is president. So he wants to: A.) Starve the federal government of money, and B.) Put liberals in prison where they can’t vote. OK, but what’s the downside?
  • Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas issues a stay of execution for an Alabama inmate. “Lawyers for Smith argue that although the jury rendered a verdict of life without parole, the trial court overrode the jury’s verdict and sentenced Smith to death.” Hmmm…
  • There’s a new cybersecurity commission report out. Guess what? It’s crap!
  • Black Workers’ Suit Accuses Job Agency of Favoring Hispanic Applicants.” Also: “He added that the staff of the MVP office in Cicero ‘was mainly Mexicans’ and that the employees were not welcoming toward African-American job seekers.” Also: “The vast majority of Hispanic job applicants served by MVP were in the United States illegally.” Note: The agency in question is not the Democratic Party, or the federal government… (Hat tip: Ann Althouse.)
  • Speaking of racial discrimination lawsuits in hiring, CNN is being sued for just that. (Hat tip: The Other McCain.)
  • Armor car robbery ringleader killed in Houston, accomplices arrested. (Hat tip: Dwight.)
  • Recovering from a devastating spinal injury via power lifting. (Ht tip: Instapundit.)
  • Marxist vegan diner closes. “Ultimately, the restaurant’s popularity among social justice warriors proved unable to sustain its rickety business model.”
  • Naval Base Bombed, Shinto Worshipers Fear Backlash – New York Times – December 8 1941.” (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Noted without comment: The @EvilMopacATX twitter feed.
  • Ex-Astronaut John Glenn Dead at 95

    December 8th, 2016

    Astronaut John Glenn, the first American in space, has died at age 95.

    Glenn, the first American to orbit the earth, and later a four-term U.S. senator from Ohio, died Thursday at the Ohio State Cancer Center. He was 95.

    Glenn became a hero in World War II and Korea, flying an astounding 149 combat missions in the two conflicts. He earned the Distinguished Flying Cross on six occasions and an Air Medal with 18 clusters. In Korea, he downed three Russian MIGs in air-to-air combat during the last nine days of that war. Ted Williams was sometimes his wing man.

    He was, at that time, just another American who had served his country. But after the war, he heard about the space program, an outrageous idea of risk and service open to military test pilots. Of course, he was interested. After rigorous and competitive testing Glenn was chosen as one of the Mercury Seven, America’s first astronauts.

    On April 8, 1959, Glenn was introduced at a press conference with Scott Carpenter, Walter M. Schirra, Jr., Alan B. Shepard, Jr., L. Gordon Cooper, Virgil “Gus” Grissom, and Donald “Deke” Slayton as the country’s Project Mercury astronauts. Glenn, who was the last surviving member of the group, a wore a bow tie.

    To understand why John Glenn became so important in America, it is important to remember how badly the United States was losing the space race in the early 1960s. The Soviet Union had pulled ahead in this Cold War battle when it launched Sputnik, the first man-made object to be placed into orbit. It then made a mockery of the American program by sending the first human being, Yuri Gagarin, into orbit. Then the Soviets sent a second cosmonaut into orbit.

    So all of America was watching at 9:47 in the morning on Feb. 20, 1962. Sitting in the cramped quarters of the Friendship 7 spacecraft, Glenn took off from Cape Canaveral. Scott Carpenter, the backup astronaut for the mission, famously said: “Godspeed, John Glenn.”

    Astronaut Glenn climbed into space, circled the globe three times, and then dropped down into the Atlantic Ocean. The flight took all of 4 hours, 55 minutes and 23 seconds, but it changed the space race and restored American pride.

    Later in life Glenn would be elected to the senate as a moderate Democrat, back when there were such things, and would vote in favor of Gramm-Rudman. He would lose the 1984 Democratic Presidential nomination to Walter Mondale, and later be involved in the Savings and Loan scandal as part of the “Keating 5.” The best that could be said about his political career is that he was far from the worst Democratic Senator during his four terms.

    Donna ISD Update: December 2016 Edition

    December 8th, 2016

    One update swept aside in late October by the flood of Clinton Corruption news was the latest from Rio Grande Valley’s Donna ISD.

    You may or may not remember from back in July when I reported that former Donna ISD employees were sentenced to prison for extortion.

    There was a lawsuit filed over their replacements:

    A lawsuit filed by two school district trustees claiming the board illegally appointed two replacement board members in February was partially dismissed last week, but plaintiffs who argue the judge wasted precious time on this case have already filed an appeal.

    Leslie McCollom, representing plaintiffs and board members Efren Ceniceros and Ernesto Lugo, filed an appeal Monday to state District Judge Luis Singletarry’s ruling on Oct. 20 which allowed the two appointed board members to continue serving until Election Day and all the actions they voted on to stand.

    The 92nd District Court judge had already dismissed an emergency temporary restraining order against the board on Feb. 25, but a hearing for both parties to argue their case had been rescheduled or canceled several times since. A final ruling on court and attorney fees is still pending.

    “It has been extraordinarily difficult to get what is basically a simple issue of law from the court,” McCollom said Wednesday. “It was unusual that he refused to set a hearing on a temporary injunction.”

    Ceniceros and Lugo filed the lawsuit on Feb. 12 after two school board trustees and former members of Team November, Eloy Infante and Elpidio Yanez, were replaced after they both plead guilty to extortion charges.

    The duo is currently serving time in federal prison for requesting monetary and gift bribes from an insurer hired while they were on the board.

    Since then an entire new board of trustees has been elected. “Out of the six seats available on the board, three were filled by Valentin Guerrero, John Billman, and Dr. Donna Mery from the United for Change slate. Eloy Avila, Alicia Reyna, and Eva Watts from the Restoring Trust slate took the other three.” (I’ll go ahead and tag those names, just in case I need them for the next Donna ISD update…)
    Other Donna ISD legal news:

  • Manuel Castillo, a Donna ISD assistant coach, was arrested for exposing himself to fifth grade girl.
  • “A South Texas school security guard who was videotaped apparently throwing a high school girl to the ground was arrested on Tuesday by Donna police and charged with official oppression and making a false report to law enforcement.” The security guard’s name is Michael Soto. Here’s video of the incident, which evidently occurred during a large school brawl:

    I’ll let you draw your own conclusions over whether Soto’s force was excessive or not.

  • What’s Happening in the War Against The Islamic State?

    December 7th, 2016

    The twists and turns of the election, Hillary’s corruption, liberal derangement over Trump’s triumph, etc. have pushed a lot of other news stories onto the back-burner.

    One of the big ones being: What the hell is happening in the war against the Islamic State?

    It looks like I’m not the only one to have taken my eye off the ball. Back when Bush was President, there was heavy mainstream media reporting on conflicts in the Middle East. But ever since Obama’s Iraq pullout engendered the rise of the Islamic State, American reporting on the conflict has been (at best) sporadic.

    Which is why I was surprised to see reports that Kurdish-led fighters were closing in on the Islamic State’s de-facto capital of Raqqa:

    As the Mosul offensive drags into its second month, another fight is raging 450km to the west around Islamic State’s de facto capital at Raqqa, on the Euphrates River in northern Syria. The battle is already a tragedy for Raqqa’s 320,000 civilians, who’ve suffered under brutal Islamic State occupation for more than three years. Many have fled, with thousands crowding into already overflowing refugee camps since the latest fighting began, and others fleeing across the hills towards the Iraqi border even as night-time temperatures plunge below freezing. Their lives, like those of families still in the city, are about to get even harder.

    The battle for Raqqa will shape the Syrian war throughout the coming year. Though smaller than the vast offensive around Mosul, it will be even more significant. It may decide the fate of Islamic State’s “caliphate” in Syria and will set the tone for the incoming Trump administration’s dealings with Turkey and Russia, two critical relationships that will drive events in the region and beyond.

    During a visit to the Middle East last week, I spoke to Syrian, Kurdish, Iraqi and American leaders involved in the campaign. They told me that while the military offensive is progressing about as well as anyone expected, the politics are proving characteristically complex.

    The troops fighting Islamic State in Raqqa come from the Syrian Democratic Forces, a rebel coalition backed by the US, among other countries. SDF units have received a stream of weapons, training and advisers since last year. Supported by coalition airstrikes, they attacked Raqqa early last month, timing the offensive (known as Operation Euphrates Wrath) to coincide with the Mosul assault, to stop Islamic State shifting reinforcements between fronts.

    The SDF has achieved considerable battlefield success. In the past month it has cleared 600sq km of rural terrain in Raqqa province, recapturing 45 villages and expelling hundreds of Islamic State fighters. Many recovered settlements are ruined, however, their populations massacred or driven off by Islamic State, or bombed out by Bashar al-Assad’s regime in previous fighting.

    The frontline sits just north of Raqqa city, in Ayn Issa district, where heavy combat (including coalition airstrikes called in by observers on the ground) has killed as many as 200 Islamic State fighters in the past two weeks.

    In the same timeframe, SDF spokesmen announced the recapture of the towns of Hazima, al-Taweelah and Tel al-Samman, north and west of Raqqa, bringing the SDF main force within 25km of the city’s outskirts, with reconnaissance teams pushing forward to the edge of town.

    Islamic State resistance is increasing as SDF advances, and most commanders expect a ferocious fight against a determined enemy once they reach the fortified downtown area.

    As the investment of Mosul has been going on for weeks, the battle for Raqqa will probably be at least equally slow and grinding, especially given the difficulties inherent in managing a diverse force of various factions:

    More than 25,000 SDF members — by far the largest faction in a force of about 30,000 — come from the People’s Protection Units (YPG) and the affiliated Women’s Protection Units (YPJ, an all-female combat brigade of 7000 troops). SDF also includes a few hundred Arab fighters from the Shammari tribal confederation, plus an Assyrian Christian militia and a small ethnic Turkmen force. The Shammari have a longstanding blood feud with Islamic State, which has massacred their men and boys and enslaved women and girls as it seeks to intimidate tribes in its region of influence. Christians and Turkmen are fighting for survival against Islamic State, which has engaged in genocidal slaughter against both groups wherever it has gained control. There also is a small secular nationalist force drawn from regime military defectors, the Free Officers Union. But these are minorities, perhaps 15 per cent altogether, in an alliance that is overwhelmingly Kurdish.

    Evidently the fighting is going poorly enough for the Islamic State that their spokesman urged their own soldiers not to flee Raqqa and Mosul. (That would be their new spokesman, the old one having been removed from office by a Hellfire missle.)

    There’s also indications that the Iraqi forces closing in on Mosul have cut off escape routes for Islamic State fighters, though Islamic State forces just launched a counterattack.

    Some have suggested that the Islamic State is preparing to retreat to a desert stronghold, in Wilayat al-Furat near the Iraq-Syrian border if it’s ejected from both Raqqa and Mosul. (This, as far as I can figure, is about where it is.)

    isis-desert-fortress

    More far afield, Libyan militias backed by American airstrikes said they have cleared Sirte, the stronghold of the Islamic State in Libya.

    One thing that may be making battlefield progress against the Islamic State possible: Cheap oil prices. Without excess petrodollars to spend, the Islamic State’s backers on the Arabian peninsula (not to mention Anatolia) may not have the spare cash to prop up their miniature caliphate.

    That said, the war against the Islamic State is far from over, and expected it to drag on into the Trump Presidency.

    Texas SEIU Declares Bankruptcy To Avoid Judgment

    December 6th, 2016

    Remember when a Houston jury smacked Texas SEIU with a $5.3 million judgment for filing false claims in their unionization campaign against Professional Janitorial Service?

    Well this weekend Texas SEIU declared bankruptcy:

    The Service Employees International Union in Texas filed for bankruptcy protection over the weekend, three months after a jury in Harris County hit it with a $5.3 million judgment.

    Jurors in the 9-year-old case determined the union’s aggressive organizing campaign maligned Professional Janitorial Service, a commercial cleaning company.

    The Texas branch of the nation’s second-largest labor union filed the bankruptcy petition Saturday in federal court in Corpus Christi. The union also filed notice with the Harris County court hearing the case that the bankruptcy petition will prevent the janitorial company from taking possession of property belonging to the union.

    Since the jury’s decision in September, damages in the case have grown to $7.8 million when $2.5 million of interest was added.

    The state-wide union, which has headquarters in Houston, warned that the judgment would put the group into a dire financial situation.

    The head of Professional Janitorial Service says the SEIU’s plan to avoid judgment won’t work:

    Brent Southwell, the CEO of the janitorial company, said it plans to continue seeking information from the union to ensure that it is not hiding money to dodge the jury award. He said the company could pursue action against the union’s national office, which has more than 1.5 million members, if the Texas branch is not able to pay the judgment.

    “The SEIU won’t escape its fate after attacking my company,” Southwell said in a press release. “We will keep this process going for as long as the SEIU wants, first by making them reveal their secrets and then by making the union’s Washington, D.C., office pay for its sins.”

    The union’s national office did not return a request for comment about the lawsuit or the resulting bankruptcy.

    SEIU Texas was formed by workers from the Chicago-based SEIU Local 1, which sent organizers to the state to rally employees in the janitorial and service sectors to join the union. Those organizers waged a three-year organizing campaign to pressure PJS into accepting card check unionization rather than a secret ballot election organized by the National Labor Relations Board, the top federal labor arbiter. The union filed 19 unfair labor practice complaints to the NLRB over the course of its campaign, a popular delaying and pressure tactic utilized by union organizers. All of those complaints were dismissed or withdrawn.

    Remember: Unions couldn’t even ram card check down America’s throat when they held the House, Senate and White House. With Republicans now firmly in charge, it’s deader than Jimmy Hoffa…

    (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)

    Mad Dog Mattis Tidbits

    December 5th, 2016

    Now that President-elect Donald Trump has officially nominated retired Marine Corps General James Norman “Mad Dog” Mattis as his Secretary of Defense, here’s a roundup of some Mattis links:

  • How Mattis approached counterinsurgency operations in Anbar province.
  • How the Obama Administration pushed out four of the most gifted generals of their generation: “David Petraeus, Stanley McChrystal, John Allen, and James Mattis.”
  • Brief Forbes overview of Mattis, including the tidbit that “as the military moved him about the globe he travelled with a library reports say was about 7,000 books.” A man after my own heart…
  • Indeed, he penned a letter scoffing at the idea of being too busy to read.
  • Here’s seven memorable Mattis quotes. Like this advice to Iraqi tribal leaders: “I come in peace. I didn’t bring artillery. But I’m pleading with you, with tears in my eyes: If you f*** with me, I’ll kill you all.” (Note: At least a couple of those quotes have been around longer than Mattis.)
  • No wait, here’s the 16 best quotes from Mattis, with some overlap. “Find the enemy that wants to end this experiment (in American democracy) and kill every one of them until they’re so sick of the killing that they leave us and our freedoms intact.”
  • A swell General Mattis Christmas story. (Hat tip: Dwight.)
  • Heh:

    (Hat Tip: Dwight.)

  • Dean Drops Out of DNC Chair Race

    December 2nd, 2016

    Republicans everywhere are breathing a sigh of relief:

    Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean dropped out of the race to become the next chairman of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) on Friday.

    Dean, who served as DNC chairman from 2005 to 2009, announced in a pre-recorded video to a conference of state Democratic chairs that he would step aside to allow for a new face to lead the party as it seeks to rebuild.

    That reduces the field of candidates to three.

    The front-runner is Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), who has racked up endorsements from Washington lawmakers and national labor unions.

    South Carolina Democratic Chairman Jaime Harrison and New Hampshire Chairman Ray Buckley are also in the race.

    President Obama’s allies are trying to recruit Labor Secretary Tom Perez for the role, and NARAL President Ilyse Hogue is also considering a bid.

    I didn’t have Ray Buckley in my last roundup. Among the first links that comes out on the openly gay Buckley are a story about unproven child pornography charges against him and this oddly-edited hit video:

    So we have a black Muslim vs. a gay white man for DNC Chair. Well, this ought to be interesting…

    LinkSwarm for December 2, 2016

    December 2nd, 2016

    Welcome to the last month of the year! (Insert standard “where has the time gone” lament here.)

    Enjoy the traditional Friday LinkSwarm:

  • Kevin D. Williamson brings the wood:

    The Democratic party is an odd apparatus in which most of the power is held by sanctimonious little old liberal white ladies with graduate degrees and very high incomes — Hillary Rodham Clinton, Elizabeth Warren, Randi Weingarten — while the manpower, the vote-power, and the money-power (often in the form of union dues) comes from a disproportionately young and non-white base made up of people who, if they are doing well, might earn one-tenth of the half-million dollars a year Weingarten was paid as the boss of the teachers’ union. They are more likely to be cutting the grass in front of Elizabeth Warren’s multi-million-dollar mansion than moving into one of their own. They roll their eyes at Hillary Rodham Clinton’s risible “abuela” act, having actual abuelas of their own.

    As in the Republican party, the Democrats have a restive base that is more radical than its leadership, more aggressive, and in search of signs of tribal affiliation. The Democratic base is not made up of little old liberal white ladies with seven-, eight-, and nine-figure bank balances, but the party’s leadership is.

  • Alan Derschowitz is not a fan of Rep. Keith Ellison’s DNC Chairman bid:

    What should a political party that has just lost its white working-class, blue-collar base to a “make America great again” nationalist do to try to regain these voters? Why not appoint as the new head of the party a radical left-wing ideologue who has a long history of supporting an anti-American, anti-white, anti-Semitic Nation of Islam racist? Such an appointment will surely bring back rust-belt voters who have lost their jobs to globalization and free trade! Is this really the thinking of those Democratic leaders who are pushing for Keith Ellison to head the Democratic National Committee?

    Keith Ellison is, by all accounts, a decent guy, who is well liked by his congressional colleagues. But it is hard to imagine a worse candidate to take over the DNC at this time. Ellison represents the extreme left wing of the Democratic Party, just when the party — if it is to win again — must move to the center in order to bring back the voters it lost to Trump. The Democrats didn’t lose because their candidates weren’t left enough. They won the votes of liberals. The radical voters they lost to Jill Stein were small in number and are not likely to be influenced by the appointment of Ellison. The centrist voters they lost to Trump will only be further alienated by the appointment of a left-wing ideologue, who seems to care more about global issues than jobs in Indiana, Wisconsin and Michigan. Ellison’s selection certainly wouldn’t help among Jewish voters in Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania or pro-Israel Christian voters around the country.

    Also, Derschowitz is not buying the “friend of Israel” blather put forth by Ellison defenders:

    Ellison’s voting record also does not support his claim that he has become a “friend” of Israel. He was one of only 8 Congressmen who voted against funding the Iron Dome program, developed jointly by the U.S. and Israel, which helps protect Israeli civilians from Hamas rockets. In 2009, Ellison was one of only two dozen Congressmen to vote “present” rather than vote for a non-binding resolution “recognizing Israel’s right to defend itself against attacks from, reaffirming the United States’ strong support for Israel, and supporting the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.” And in 2010, Ellison co‐authored a letter to President Obama, calling on him to pressure Israel into opening the border with Gaza. The letter describes the blockade of the Hamas-controlled Gaza strip as “de facto collective punishment of the Palestinian residents.”

  • Five Thirty Eight asserts that education levels one of the primary determinants of which counties voted for Trump.
  • More electorate analysis: “This is a case where the simplest explanation is the correct one: Donald Trump won because he did exceptionally (indeed, historically) well with the white working class, a bloc that until 2016 was resistant north of the Mason-Dixon line to voting Republican en masse.”
  • Fidel Castro’s murders by the numbers. (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • Could Marine Le Pen be the leftmost candidate in France’s presidential election?
  • Your government in action: health inspectors deny the homeless a free BBQ meal.
  • Rotherham, post-truth and the “alt-right”:

    Some on the left in the West see certain ideas and even some easily verifiable truths, as plain dangerous, much like the totalitarian communists of yesteryear. Dangerous to public order. Dangerous to the ‘common good’.

    Whilst this section of the left has always existed, it now seems to have become more ‘mainstream’. It seethes and obsesses within carefully-policed ideological echo-chambers. It dominates in universities, trade unions and the public sector. And whereas it was once mainly prevalent in fringe far-left outfits, it has now effectively co-opted the Labour party through its membership and leadership.

    Anyone who has ever tried to engage with this section of the left will know that it doesn’t ‘do debate’ with conservatives on issues like immigration, multiculturalism and identity politics. For it, “the debate is settled”. Opposing views are intrinsically wicked. Such ideas are to be ignored. Muted. Blocked. Banned. Disrupted. Drowned out with fog-horns.

    It does not feel it needs to win the argument nor does it see any reason to engage in one. Where it can apply ‘No Platform’ or ‘Safe Space’ schemes to stymie debate, it will do so assiduously. Where it can’t, it’s adept at innovating campaigns such as #StopFundingHate to help promote the censorship it craves.

    (Hat tip: Instapundit.)

  • Still more on How Trump got elected:

    The privileged worked hard for Trump. Every time they described his people as uneducated white males, implicit dregs, they drove votes to Donald. And they so described the working class unceasingly.

    It made him President. Good, bad, or indifferent, it is how he got in.

    The privileged denigrated all whites unlike themselves. Then Hillary made her “deplorables” speech, confirming her contempt for half of America–those uneducated, shapeless, dull-witted proles in Flyover Land, obese, farting and belching, swilling Bud, watching NASCAR for god’s sake in awful trailers. And why not not sneer at them? Why did Hillary need their votes? Did not Rachel Maddow love her?

    For Trump it was gold, pure gold. If he had written her speech, he could not have come up with a better line to destroy her. It was the purest product of the establishment’s hubris. She did it to herself. Sweet.

    It made him President.

    Black Lives Matter also did yeoman work for the Donald. As they and snowflake Brown Shirts and excited millennials blocked highways and beat Trump’s supporters and shut down rallies, and vandalized cars, and of course looted, they presumably thought they were working against the Trump Monster. Not a chance. Out there in the uncharted barbarian lands between Manhattan and Hollywood, in dark primeval forests where Cro-Magnons are still a rarity, people were sick of lawlessness, and of an establishment that tolerated it. It produced more votes, perhaps not for Trump or even against Hillary but against the class that she represented.

    Immigration. Here Hillary and Obama did great work for Donald. As Obama frantically brought in as many “refugees” as possible from everywhere, anywhere that might not be compatible with the people upon whom he would force them, Hillary promised to import huge numbers of Muslims. It was luminously stupid politics, but politically she was luminously stupid, so it fit.

    It is why she is not President.

    She knew that the backward peoples of Flyover Land ought to want hundreds of thousands of Somalis and Pakistanis and who-knew-what to live with, and if they didn’t, she would force them and it didn’t matter because she had big donors and everybody in the media loved her.

    However incoherent and ignorant Trump was, the Establishment was determined to elect him. Elect him it did.

    (Hat tip: Borepatch.)

  • The end of identity politics? (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • You know those sacred medicare funds? Obama has raided them to help take care of illegal aliens.
  • Germany’s security agency infiltrated by a jihadist. (Hat tip: Ace.)
  • The pension fund for Dallas policeman and firefighters is teetering on insolvency thanks to risky investments.
  • Don’t agree with everything in this John Gray essay on the closing of the liberal mind, published right before Trump’s election, but there’s a lot to chew over concerning the post-liberal world order, and especially the Labour Party’s relation to it. “Labour has become unelectable in any foreseeable future.”
  • Banks in India run out of money thanks to the idiot currency ban:

    Many in north India who slept outside banks in freezing conditions woke up in the morning to be told only that no cash had arrived.

    “I have been doing the rounds of banks for the past 20 days and have been unable to withdraw my own money,” said Balbir Singh, a junior executive in a private firm in New Delhi. “Even on payday the story was the same: the bank said it simply had no money to disburse, even though I have ample credit in my account.”

  • Turkish Lira collapses.
  • Global warming: “Since 1940 the sea level off of northern Washington has dropped about 15 cm. (6 inches).”
  • How Gary Taubes overcame the severe backlash over his famous expose of how low fat diets fail compared to low carb diets like Atkins.
  • Chicago’s real estate market expect to rank dead last. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Will Wallace Hall have the last laugh on his UT records request? (Hat tip: Cahman’s Musings.)
  • Smoking marijuana inhibits blood flow to the brain.
  • The science of the Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919. (Hat tip: Ann Althouse.)
  • Nothing says “class” like wearing an ascot, sipping a glass of wine, and spray-painting “Fuck Trump” on a supermarket wall.
  • The wit and wisdom of Robert Stacy McCain.
  • A startling factoid:

  • Less startling, still interesting:

    (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)

  • A concise definition of the issue:

  • Trump Nominates Mattis as Secretary of Defense

    December 1st, 2016

    Confirming widespread rumor, President-elect Donald Trump announced he’s nominating retired Marine Corps General James Norman “Mad Dog” Mattis as his Secretary of Defense.

    Being Trump, he made the announcement at his “Victory Tour” rally in Cincinnati.

    Mattis is a universally respected a military leader (at least outside the fever swamps of the left that hate all American military power, as well as those who serve), and should make a great Secretary of Defense.

    “Your Tears, Kos! Let Me Drink Your Tears!”

    December 1st, 2016

    The chief Kossak is still enraged at the election results, and just let his bile spew in an epic rant about that continued enragement (which is pretty much a textbook case of “anger issues”). A bunch is the usual “racist/sexist/white supremacist” crap, but much takes square aim at his own side for such an epic cock-up.

    Some of the tastier bits:

  • I’m angry at Hillary Clinton for losing. Plain and simple, her campaign had one job. And it should’ve been an easy job! And yes, they won the popular vote, and let’s never forget that. But they weren’t even polling in Michigan! It was rank incompetence.

  • I’m angry at Clinton for running an old-world campaign. She was in California TWO WEEKS BEFORE THE ELECTION raising money. She was in CALIFORNIA! TWO WEEKS before the election! Clinton’s campaign raised $500 million for itself, and another $175 million through Priorities USA. Donald Trump’s campaign raised about $250 million total. But Clinton, who lived through both the Obama campaign and the Bernie Sanders one, was still stuck in that old way of thinking, that more money meant more victory.
  • And speaking of the Obama and Sanders campaigns, Clinton still didn’t learn the obvious lessons from a people-powered campaign. I mean, spend time in front of crowds in battleground states, and the money will come in, easily! You don’t have to have a rich-people fundraiser in California weeks before the election to raise the money.
  • Oh, and what was all that money spent on? The biggest chunk was on worthless TV ads that did nothing to move the needle. Donald Trump knew that, and spent almost nothing on TV. Yes, he was on TV a lot, but that’s because he gave the media reasons to cover him. Meanwhile, the Michigan Democratic Party had to scramble to raise $200,000 for its GOTV efforts, completely ignored by the Clinton campaign.
  • I’m angry at the Democratic consultant class, who really shit the bed this year in epic, glorious fashion. All that money you donated? Either pissed away by these assholes, or tucked into their pockets. It’s on Clinton for letting them run the asylum. And related, I’m angry at myself for thinking that campaign manager Robbie Mook—a decent guy—heralded a different way of running the campaign. Either he went along with the bullshit, or he got sidelined. Either way, any top consultant working for this campaign should be blacklisted into eternity. Not the staffers who toiled away! Those people are heroes. But the assholes at the top making the decisions.
  • But most of all, he seems really angry that people are allowed to express opinions he doesn’t agree with:

  • I’m angry at those who are angry at me for trying to tamp down the Clinton criticism after the primary, as if endless sniping from the left, through Election Day, would’ve done anything to improve her chances. Goddam liberals, why couldn’t we wait until after she was elected to snipe at her? She ran the most explicitly liberal campaign in Democratic history, yet that was never enough. Meanwhile, the religious right never took their eye off the ball, and rallied fiercely behind Trump despite his overt moral failures. Now they get that Supreme Court, and we don’t. Congrats!

  • I’m angry at the media, who thought endlessly harping over a non-scandal email story was clever and smart and necessary. Then, after Trump announced he would kill the White House traveling press corps, CNN’s Wolf Blitzer declared that Trump had “gone too far!” Fuck you. NOW he had gone too far? Fuck them all. I hope Trump kills the White House press corps altogether, so maybe the assholes will be properly motivated and incentivized to hold the presidency accountable, rather than playing “stenography” from inside the White House.
  • Remember when the Clinton Foundation was a BIG STORY, despite there being ZERO evidence of wrongdoing, while a single reporter at the Washington Post dug up example after example of wrongdoing at the Trump family foundation? Remember? Yup. Fuck those assholes.
  • I’m angry at ME. It was easy to trust the data, and I expected it to continue working. And then it didn’t, and fuck that shit. So I built an entire narrative around what the data said, and it was wrong. And I still don’t know how else I would’ve handled it, so that makes me angry as well. I know what we must do in the future—organize with a vengeance—but when it comes to covering the election, I’m at a bit of a loss.
  • I’m angry at me because I don’t know what I could’ve done better. I know there are people who want to scream “you shouldn’t have squelched Clinton dissent!” And to that, I say that’s one of the things I did RIGHT. Heck, maybe I should’ve tamped it down sooner. I don’t know how anyone can argue that having liberals diarying about “Clinton’s imminent email-related indictment” was in any way helpful. Clinton Derangement Syndrome was strong, and it cost us.
  • Takeaways:

  • “Spend time in front of crowds in battleground states, and the money will come in.” Really? Have you seen Clinton speak? There more she speaks, the less people like her. Hillary’s great at scarfing up big bundled donations from special interests expecting political favors. Drawing donations from small donors thanks to her electric personality? Not so much.
  • How dare Bernie Sanders supporters not fall in line and do the Party’s bidding?
  • Saint Hillary is pure as the driven snow! How dare you investigate those silly email and Clinton Foundation scandals?
  • Clinton got the most biased coverage in her favor ever in Presidential election history, and Kos is screaming that it just wasn’t fawning enough.
  • Note that Kos is screaming about both how was he to know all the polls were wrong and how he should have squelched dissent harder! Don’t see a little disconnect there, Commissar Kos? Like how your side’s ruthless insistence on squelching dissent skews polls, or having a press so in-the-tank for Hillary dangerously impaired your side’s situational awareness? Ever hear the term “preference cascade”?
  • Take a nice refreshing drought of Kos’ anger, and liberal self-delusion, at the same time.

    (Hat tip: Kurt Schlichter’s Twitter feed.)