Posts Tagged ‘Media Watch’

Clinton Corruption Update for June 1, 2017

Thursday, June 1st, 2017

After Hillary Clinton lost the 2016 Presidential election to Donald Trump, I assumed that (if she wasn’t indicted), she would go the way of Al Gore and Walter Mondale and step out of the public spotlight. Never did I dream that we’d be almost half a year into the Trump Presidency and Hillary Clinton would still be refighting the 2016 Presidential election.

Say this for the Atlanta Falcons: As bad as their collapse was, I don’t see any of them making the talk shows rounds proclaiming that they really won Super Bowl LI. Yet Hillary Clinton suffers from a world-class case of denial:

New York Magazine dedicated its cover story to covering Clinton’s journey from a one-time presidential loser to a two-time presidential loser. Deep inside the coverage is a key kernel of wisdom: Even if you lose, just pretend you didn’t so people keep giving you money.

When asked about how Trump and Bernie Sanders capitalized on American anger, Clinton responded like a dementia-riddled Civil War veteran: “Yes, and I beat both of them,” she told Rebecca Traister of New York Mag.

Uh huh. I guess when Clinton says things like this we’re just supposed to ignore them like when grandma says something racist at the dinner table. Sure, Clinton won in November, and the maid is stealing money from Nana’s purse.

Snip.

If you think Clinton is ready to take any responsibility, hold your breath. Her unfavorables, the FBI investigation, her shady business practices—that’s all just the fault of The Media.

“Look, we have an advocacy press on the right that has done a really good job for the last 25 years,” Clinton told NY Mag. “They have a mission. They use the rights given to them under the First Amendment to advocate a set of policies that are in their interests, their commercial, corporate, religious interests. Because the advocacy media occupies the right, and the center needs to be focused on providing as accurate information as possible. Not both-sides-ism and not false equivalency.”

Only a Clinton would somehow have the gall to argue that the media didn’t work hard enough to stop Trump from getting elected.

(Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)

Yet another revelation from Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign, namely that the entire “Russia hacked the election” fantasy liberals have been pushing was cooked up by Hillary Clinton’s team within 24 hours of her loss:

The book further highlights how Clinton’s Russia-blame-game was a plan hatched by senior campaign staffers John Podesta and Robby Mook, less than “within twenty-four hours” after she conceded:

That strategy had been set within twenty-four hours of her concession speech. Mook and Podesta assembled her communications team at the Brooklyn headquarters to engineer the case that the election wasn’t entirely on the up-and-up. For a couple of hours, with Shake Shack containers littering the room, they went over the script they would pitch to the press and the public. Already, Russian hacking was the centerpiece of the argument.

The Clinton camp settled on a two-pronged plan — pushing the press to cover how “Russian hacking was the major unreported story of the campaign, overshadowed by the contents of stolen e-mails and Hillary’s own private-server imbroglio,” while “hammering the media for focusing so intently on the investigation into her e-mail, which had created a cloud over her candidacy,” the authors wrote.

Of course, many Democrats who “wanted to believe” have been taken in by that laughably fake Russian “dossier” on Trump. Including former FBI Director James Comey. “It was a very powerful factor in the decision to go forward in July with the statement that there shouldn’t be a prosecution.”

And now that Comey is out, “a growing chorus is suggesting that the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email scandal should be reopened.”

In other Clinton Corruption news:

  • “Bangladesh prime minister says Clinton personally pressured her to help foundation donor.”

    The Office of Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina confirmed to Circa that Mrs. Clinton called her office in March 2011 to demand that Dr. Muhammed Yunus, a 2006 Nobel Peace prize winner, be restored to his role as chairman of the country’s most famous microcredit bank, Grameen Bank. The bank’s nonprofit Grameen America, which Yunus chairs, has given between $100,000 and $250,000 to the Clinton Global Initiative. Grameen Research, which is chaired by Yunus, has donated between $25,000 and $50,000, according to the Clinton Foundation website.

    (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)

  • Democrats don’t actually want a congressional investigation into Russian hacking allegations. “They have tried to destroy this Russia investigation, they’ve never been serious about it.” (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • How Hillary blew the election in five easy steps. “Hillary Clinton had no real sincere position on any issue other than a desire to stay in public office for nearly a quarter-century.”

    Also:

    Haughtiness, insularity, and laziness characterized the conduct of the Clinton campaign. Even a novice outsider could see that Obama’s successful electoral matrix — record minority turnout and bloc voting, coupled with the drop-off in turnout by a disengaged white working middle class (tired both of left-wing identity politics and Republican bluestocking elitism) — was not going to be transferrable to an off-putting 69-year-old, white multimillionaire.

    Not only did Hillary Clinton lack Obama’s youthful vigor and mellifluousness; she also seemed at times geriatric, snarky, and screechy. The result was that she did not win the minority vote at the levels she needed. Further, she galvanized the supposedly ossified and irrelevant white working classes to finally come out and vote, in their own bloc fashion, against her. Obama had guaranteed her his downside but never delivered his upside.

    Snip.

    She made her disdain concrete by never campaigning in Wisconsin and only sporadically visiting the Blue Wall states eastward to the Carolinas. And she was convinced that demography had doomed the white working classes and empowered Latinos and blacks in red states such as Arizona and Georgia.

    Clinton’s inept campaign aimed, then, not just at a win (which was attainable by nonstop populist barnstorming and message massaging in the Rust Belt) but, greedily, at a “mandate” that was impossible, given minority-vote falloff and Democratic estrangement from the working classes. Apparently, no one told the campaign that open borders were not a popular national issue, and that Democrats could not win Texas even with Latino bloc voting, and that they could do so in deep-blue California but without any electoral significance.

    Also:

    Peter Schweizer’s Clinton Cash is underappreciated for its effect on the campaign. Through painstaking research, it tied together all the strands of Clinton nefariousness: the Clinton Foundation as an excuse to hire political flunkies and provide free jet travel; the quid pro quo State Department nods to those who hired Bill Clinton to speak; and corruption under Hillary Clinton, from cellphone concessions in Haiti to North American uranium sales to Russian interests.

    Add to the Clinton sleaze Hillary’s unsecured server and communications of classified material, the creepy New York and Washington careerists who turned up in the Podesta archives, and the political rigging that warped the conduct of the Democratic National Committee.

    The result was that Hillary could no longer play the role of the “good” Clinton who “put up” with her husband’s “good ole boy” sleaze. Her new image was that of an equal partner in crime — or perhaps even a godmother who used the capo Bill as muscle. In comparison, Trump steaks, Trump University, Trump taxes, and Trump ties were old-fashioned American hucksterism, but with one important difference: Trump’s excesses were a private person’s; Clinton’s were those of a public servant.

  • Clinton even trashed the in-the-tank for Hillary DNC over poor data collection.

    “I’m now the nominee of the Democratic Party. I inherit nothing from the Democratic Party,” she continued.

    “What do you mean nothing?” asked interviewer Walt Mossberg.

    “I mean it was bankrupt, it was on the verge of insolvency, its data was mediocre to poor, nonexistent, wrong. I had to inject money into it, the DNC, to keep it going,” Clinton said.

    Hell, all that may even be true, but what sort of gratitude is that after the DNC went out of its way to put its thumb on the scales to ensure she beat Bernie Sanders? (Hat tip: Directror Blue.)

  • That, in turn, lead DNC data guy Andrew Therriault to tweet defending himself:

    Then he deleted both those tweets, including the one that mentioned DNC limits as a “laundering vehicle.” Why, it’s almost as though he feared criticizing Hillary Clinton…

  • The real Clinton-Russia nexus is a lot more concrete than the theoretical Trump-Russia nexus.
  • We keep hearing again and again that Hillary isn’t running for anything. Then why does she keep sounding like she is?

    Hillary Rodham Clinton isn’t merely in a state of denial. She has become Bruce Willis in The Sixth Sense. Politically speaking, she is dead, but she doesn’t know it. Her staffers are so many Haley Joel Osments — too kind (and too attached to their salaries) to tell her that her career is over. She doesn’t need briefings. She doesn’t need to do interviews. She doesn’t need to write the book she is writing (after so many indigestible volumes, why bother with one more?). She doesn’t need to stake out a politically nuanced position on James Comey’s firing or scramble to get out in front of the Resistance parade. She lost two exceedingly winnable presidential campaigns in Hindenburgian fashion. There is no demand for her to run again and there is nothing left for her except to receive whatever ceremonial honors and sinecures may come her way. She has been handed her political retirement papers by the American people. She’s done.

    (Hat tip: Maggie’s Farm.)

  • Hillary’s accusations of voter suppression are bunk.
  • “Hillary Clinton is making fools out of feminists.” Making? (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • From back in January: The FBI quietly release “nearly 300 pages of records from its investigation of Hillary Clinton’s private email server.”
  • More on the same subject:

    A new batch of messages released by the State Department on Tuesday shows the former secretary of state and her team routinely shared her upcoming schedules, talking points and sensitive items – such as her iPad password – via the homebrewed system.

    Other newly revealed emails, which were posted as the result of litigation, show Clinton’s top advisers griping about her during her time as secretary of State; an Asian ruler who later implemented Sharia law saying he considered former President Bill Clinton part of his “family”; and Clinton talking about Justin Cooper, one of the key figures who administered to her private server.

  • Hillary Clinton gets a break when an Obama-appointed judge throughs out a lawsuit against her over Benghazi on technical grounds.
  • “Hey, Hillary Clinton, shut the f— up and go away already.” And that’s from someone who voted for Clinton! “No one deserves more blame for the election debacle than Hillary Rodham Clinton.”
  • In the Course of Explaining Why Democrats Lose, Matt Tabbi Demonstrates Why Democrats Lose

    Monday, May 29th, 2017

    Matt Tabbi had a Rolling Stone piece that Zero Hedge was kind enough to repost. It’s ostensibly a piece on why Democrats’ naked contempt for average Americans keeps losing them elections that, en passant, demonstrates the Democrats’ naked contempt for average Americans that keeps losing them elections.

    After talking about Greg Gianforte’s win in the Montana election, the usual Trump and Republican bashing and various recent Democratic Party losses in the Obama era, Tabbi gets to the meat of his argument and why Hillary Clinton’s “Deplorables” comment was so devastating to Democratic Party chances. But right before he goes into that, we get this:

    America is obviously a deeply racist and paranoid country.

    And there it is, the recurring lie that seems to dwell at the heart of Democratic Party members’ inflated, unshakable sense of their own moral superiority, spit out almost like an involuntary Tourettes’s tic, or a password that must be given to even get Democrats to read the article. “Halt! What’s the password?” “America the racist!” “Pass, friend.”

    This is a lie. America is objectively among the least racist countries in the world. And one of the biggest (excuse me, yuuuuggggeeee) reasons Donald Trump won was how sick, tired and just plain angry ordinary Americans are at being falsely labeled racists.

    Democrats wielded accusations of racism against their political opponents as a cynical means to get their way. Oppose higher welfare spending? Racist! Support enforcing border control laws? Racist! Oppose unlimited, unassimilated Muslim immigration? Racist!

    Racist! Racist! Racist! Racist! Racist!

    And then, when their magic word lost its power and Democrats started losing elections hand over fist, instead of moderating their rhetoric, Democrats, pandering to the worst victmhood identity politics/social justice warrior cadres in their ranks, doubled down on it. White privilege! #BlackLivesMatter!

    Indeed, it is progressives who have become the racists, denouncing people as evil for being born with the wrong skin color and demanding colleges offer segregated accommodations to appease radical grievance-mongering.

    And, lo and behold, people who weren’t racists got sick and tried of being called racists 24/7 by the Democratic Media Establishment, and threw Democrats out of office. To use Tabbi’s own statistics: “Republicans now control 68 state legislative chambers, while Democrats only control 31. Republicans flipped three more governors’ seats last year and now control an incredible 33 of those offices. Since 2008, when Barack Obama first took office, Republicans have gained somewhere around 900 to 1,000 seats overall.”

    And instead of rethinking their approach, Democrats just keep digging. “If we just keep calling them racists, sooner or later we can shame them into giving in and returning us to power!”

    No, you’re not going to shame us because we know we’re not racists, and your insistence on continually labeling us such just makes us bound and determined to tune out everything you have to say.

    Later on, Tabbi again exhibits that same tone-deafness, when he says that Democrats “don’t seem to have anything to say to voters in flyover country.”

    Well, for starters, our liberal elites might start by not calling it flyover country. Do you have any idea what a smug, entitled prick that phrase makes you sound like? “I just can’t understand why those redneck freaks of JesusLand won’t vote for their moral superiors anymore!”

    So if you’re wondering why “flyover country” isn’t more upset about a Republican candidate (allegedly) punching a reporter, that’s why. We’re finally feeling the same contempt for you you’ve been openly expressing about us for decades.

    Until Democrats change their ways, expect ordinary Americans to keep ignoring them and voting them out of power.

    Nicholas Kristof/New York Times Lie Through Omission

    Saturday, May 27th, 2017

    The New York Times just published this Nicholas Kristof opinion piece on underage marriage in America.

    It leads with an outrageous injustice designed to immediately rouse the reader to righteous anger:

    When she was a scrawny 11-year-old, Sherry Johnson found out one day that she was about to be married to a 20-year-old member of her church who had raped her.

    “It was forced on me,” she recalls. She had become pregnant, she says, and child welfare authorities were investigating — so her family and church officials decided the simplest way to avoid a messy criminal case was to organize a wedding.

    “My mom asked me if I wanted to get married, and I said, ‘I don’t know, what is marriage, how do I act like a wife?’” Johnson remembers today, many years later. “She said, ‘Well, I guess you’re just going to get married.’”

    So she was. A government clerk in Tampa, Fla., refused to marry an 11-year-old, even though this was legal in the state, so the wedding party went to nearby Pinellas County, where the clerk issued a marriage license. The license (which I’ve examined) lists her birth date, so officials were aware of her age.

    Truly shocking stuff, right?

    However, though Kristof takes pains to say he’s examined Johnson’s birth certificate, he’s also taken pains to hide one extremely important fact from the reader: Sherry Johnson’s underage marriage took place in 1972.

    If the your leading example of injustice is 45 years old, and you deliberately hide that fact from the reader, it does rather undercut the alleged urgency of your cause.

    This is not the only mistake in the piece: There’s a map showing the legal status of underage marriage in various states. Texas is shown as a state with no lower limit to the age of marriage. One tiny problem: That isn’t true. From Texas state statutes:

    Sec. 2.009. ISSUANCE OF LICENSE. (a) Except as provided by Subsections (b) and (d), the county clerk may not issue a license if either applicant:

    (1) fails to provide the information required by this subchapter;

    (2) fails to submit proof of age and identity;

    (3) is under 16 years of age and has not been granted a court order as provided by Section 2.103;

    (4) is 16 years of age or older but under 18 years of age and has not presented at least one of the following:

    (A) parental consent as provided by Section 2.102;

    (B) documents establishing that a prior marriage of the applicant has been dissolved; or

    (C) a court order as provided by Section 2.103

    Section 2.103 makes clear that an age waiver can only come via a judge’s order, and only after petition to marry comes from the minor involved:

    Sec. 2.103. COURT ORDER FOR UNDERAGE APPLICANT. (a) A minor may petition the court in the minor’s own name for an order granting permission to marry. In a suit under this section, the trial judge may advance the suit if the best interest of the applicant would be served by an early hearing.

    (b) The petition must be filed in the county where a parent resides if a court has not awarded another person the right to consent to marriage for the minor. If a court has awarded another person the right to consent to marriage for the minor, the petition must be filed in the county where that person resides. If no parent or person who has the court-ordered right to consent to marriage for the minor resides in this state, the petition must be filed in the county where the minor lives.

    (c) The petition must include:

    (1) a statement of the reasons the minor desires to marry;

    (2) a statement of whether each parent is living or is dead;

    (3) the name and residence address of each living parent; and

    (4) a statement of whether a court has awarded to a person other than a parent of the minor the right to consent to marriage for the minor.

    (d) Process shall be served as in other civil cases on each living parent of the minor or on a person who has the court-ordered right to consent to marriage for the minor, as applicable. Citation may be given by publication as in other civil cases, except that notice shall be published one time only.

    (e) The court shall appoint an amicus attorney or an attorney ad litem to represent the minor in the proceeding. The court shall specify a fee to be paid by the minor for the services of the amicus attorney or attorney ad litem. The fee shall be collected in the same manner as other costs of the proceeding.

    (f) If after a hearing the court, sitting without a jury, believes marriage to be in the best interest of the minor, the court, by order, shall grant the minor permission to marry.

    That’s quite different than “no age limit.”

    That map is sourced from Tahirih Justice Center, which seems to be focused on ending sex trafficking and female genital mutilation. The editorial doesn’t mention that, probably because it only mentions the word “Muslim” once: “As in Africa and Asia, the reasons for such marriages in the U.S. are often cultural or religious; the American families follow conservative Christian, Muslim or Jewish traditions, and judges sometimes feel that they shouldn’t intrude on other cultures.”

    While it might be possible to find individual instances of conservative Christian or Jewish marriage under the age of 16 in 1st century America, I would wager that the vast majority of underage marriage cases can be attributed to one of two faiths: Muslims and fundamentalist Mormons. Since New York Times and other left-leaning mainstream media outlets seem congenitally incapable of talking honestly about Islam or Muslim immigrants, they’re forced to pluck an example from 1972, then hide that fact from the reader.

    Underage marriage may or may not be a significant problem in America today, but, thanks to a dishonest piece by Nicholas Kristof in the New York Times, we still don’t know…

    LinkSwarm for May 26, 2017

    Friday, May 26th, 2017

    Happy Memorial Day Weekend! A time to remember the fallen and enjoy a three day weekend. It’s also an Energy Star Sales Tax Holiday here in Texas, which could mean big savings on such varied items as refrigerators, water conservation or water efficient products, and various gardening products, including soil and mulch.

    Now on to the LinkSwarm!

  • Hey Democrats: How’s that “All Trump Derangement Syndrome, All the Time” working out for you? “A new Gallup Poll indicates that the rating for Democrats has slipped five points since November, while the low rating for the Republican Party remained about the same.” (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • What ObamaCare wrought: “The average individual purchaser of health insurance across the United States saw their premiums increase from $232 per month in 2013 to $476 per month in 2017, a ‘modest’ increase of over 100% in just a few years. To put that into perspective, that’s nearly $3,000 per year and roughly 9% of what the median American earns each year.”
  • More on Obama’s widespread, unconstitutional domestic surveillance:

    The National Security Agency under former President Barack Obama routinely violated American privacy protections while scouring through overseas intercepts and failed to disclose the extent of the problems until the final days before Donald Trump was elected president last fall, according to once top-secret documents that chronicle some of the most serious constitutional abuses to date by the U.S. intelligence community.

    More than 5 percent, or one out of every 20 searches seeking upstream Internet data on Americans inside the NSA’s so-called Section 702 database violated the safeguards Obama and his intelligence chiefs vowed to follow in 2011, according to one classified internal report reviewed by Circa.

    The Obama administration self-disclosed the problems at a closed-door hearing Oct. 26 before the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court that set off alarm. Trump was elected less than two weeks later.

    The normally supportive court censured administration officials, saying the failure to disclose the extent of the violations earlier amounted to an “institutional lack of candor” and that the improper searches constituted a “very serious Fourth Amendment issue,” according to a recently unsealed court document dated April 26, 2017.

  • Kurt Schlichter: Trump succeeds at his most important job:

    Looking at it objectively, as a guy who opposed Trump until he dispatched Ted Cruz, I have to consider all the facts and ponder the evidence carefully before awarding Donald Trump the grade of A+. He has done an incredible job of doing exactly what I had hoped he would do in the off chance he defeated that naggy harridan and her corps of gender indeterminate hipsters, coastal snobs, race hustlers, aspiring libfascists, media scum, and wussy pseudo-conservatives terrified that a Hillary loss would mean people might expect them to do more than wear bow ties and go on NPR to prattle about Burke in their high-pitched, nasal voices.

    There can be no serious debate. Donald Trump has done a truly outstanding job of not being Hillary Clinton.

    His not being Hillary Clinton was and remains my sole expectation of Donald Trump’s presidency. Nothing else matters in the end; it is enough that Trump foiled Felonia von Pantsuit’s creepy scheme to subjugate forever the deplorable mass of normal people she despises. The Obamacare repeal, tax reform, plus appointees of the quality of Gorsuch, Mattis and McMaster, and his lower court appointments – the inexplicable and damn-well-better-be-corrected-if-Trump-doesn’t-want-a conservative-rebellion omission of Justice Don Willett not withstanding – are merely icing on the red velvet cake of Trump’s not-being-Hillaryhood.

  • Mark Steyn weighs in on the Manchester attack, and, as usual, the difficulty is finding what not to quote:

    A few weeks ago the BBC reported that “approximately 850 people” from the United Kingdom have gone to Syria and Iraq to fight for Isis and the like. That’s more volunteers than the IRA were able to recruit in thirty years of the “Troubles”, when MI5 estimated that they never had more than a hundred active terrorists out in the field. This time maybe it’s the exotic appeal of foreign travel, as opposed to a month holed up in a barn in Newry.

    Carrying on in Germany, Angela Merkel pronounced the attack “incomprehensible”. But she can’t be that uncomprehending, can she? Our declared enemies are perfectly straightforward in their stated goals, and their actions are consistent with their words. They select their targets with some care. For a while, it was Europe’s Jews, at a Brussels museum and a Toulouse school and a Copenhagen synagogue and a Paris kosher supermarket. But Continentals are, except for political photo-ops on Holocaust Memorial Day, relatively heartless about dead Jews, and wrote off such incidents as something to do with “Israeli settlements” and “occupation” and of no broader significance.

    So they moved on to slaughter 49 gays in a nightclub in Orlando – the biggest mound of gay corpses ever piled up in American history and the worst terror attack on American soil since 9/11. But all the usual noisy LGBTQWERTY activists fell suddenly silent, as if they’d all gone back in the closet and curled up in the fetal position. And those Democrats who felt obliged to weigh in thought it was something to do with the need for gun control…

    So they targeted provocative expressions of the infidel’s abominable false religion, decapitating a French priest at Mass and mowing down pedestrians at a Berlin Christmas market. But post-Christian Europe takes Christianity less seriously than its enemies do, and so that too merited little more than a shrug and a pledge to carry on.

    So they selected symbols of nationhood, like France’s Bastille Day, Canada’s Cenotaph, and the Mother of Parliaments in London. But taking seriously assaults on your own nation’s symbols would require you to take your nation seriously, and most western citizens are disinclined to do so. As the great universal talismanic anthem of the age has it, “Imagine there’s no countries/It’s easy if you try…”

    So the new Caliphate’s believers figured out that what their enemy really likes is consumerism and pop music. Hence the attacks on the Champs-Élysées and the flagship Åhléns department store in Stockholm, and the bloodbath at the Eagles of Death Metal concert in Paris and now at Ariana Grande’s “Dangerous Woman” tour.

    Snip.

    But the arithmetic is not difficult: Poland and Hungary and Slovakia do not have Islamic terrorism because they have very little Islam. France and Germany and Belgium admit more and more Islam, and thus more and more terrorism. Yet the subject of immigration has been all but entirely absent from the current UK election campaign. Thirty years ago, in the interests of stopping IRA terrorism, the British state was not above preventing the internal movement within its borders of unconvicted, uncharged, unarrested Republican sympathizers seeking to take a ferry from Belfast to Liverpool. Today it declares it can do nothing to prevent the movement of large numbers of the Muslim world from thousands of miles away to the heart of the United Kingdom. It’s just a fact of life – like being blown up when you go to a pop concert.

    Read the whole thing.

  • 20 Coptic Christians slain in Egypt today. Update: Death toll now up to 28.
  • The threat of jihad is real. The threat of “Islamophobia” is not.
  • Obama Administration knowingly allowed MS-13 and Sureno 18 gang members to enter the country. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Denver city council decriminalizes wife-beating to keep illegal aliens from being deported:

    The Denver City Council agreed Monday to change to local sentencing guidelines in order to shield legal immigrants convicted of domestic violence from deportation proceedings.

    In a unanimous 12-0 vote, council members revised criminal penalties for several “low-level” crimes, reducing the maximum sentence to less than 365 days in jail. Under federal law, a criminal conviction that results in a sentence of a year or more is grounds for deporting any alien, including U.S. visa holders and legal permanent residents.

    (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)

  • Speaking of border control, there were over 700,000 visa overstays in 2016 alone. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • “The Islamic State chops off children’s hands for refusing to execute prisoners.”
  • Allegedly body-slamming a reporter did not prevent Republican Greg Gianforte from handily beating singing socialist Rob Quist in a special election for Montana’s at-large congressional seat. Hey, remember when progressives were busy telling us it was OK to punch Nazis? Good times, good time…
  • Indeed, Gianforte raised over $100,000 right after news of the alleged assault spread. One need not condone violence to suggest that the Trump Derangement Syndrome-riddled press just might have an image problem with the American people… (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • Estonia Expels Two Russian Diplomats; Moscow Warns This “Unfriendly Action Will Not Go Unanswered.'”
  • A game a lot of newly-minted college graduates will be playing:

    (Hat tip: Instapundit.)

  • A tweet:

  • Does Trump have a short attention span, or just the ability to quickly grasp the most important details? Scott Adams says the latter.
  • Adams also says its time to end presidential press briefings.
  • In the Middle East, Trump clears the very low bar of sucking less than Obama:

    The success – so far – of the president’s Middle East trip stands on the ashes of Obama’s failures. It’s easy to forget that for all Obama’s alleged expertise, his foray into the Middle East foundered on his arrogance and naiveté. In his 2009 Cairo speech, he unspooled clichés as wisdom, thinking that his name alone would put points on the board. He bought into the idea that the road to stability and peace in the Middle East went through Jerusalem.

    As Obama learned on the job, he came to believe that the road to peace went through Tehran, crafting an Iranian deal that alienated both our democratic ally Israel and our strategic Sunni allies, chief among them Saudi Arabia. In pursuit of his fantasy, he turned a blind eye to Iran’s crushing of the Green Revolution and dithered to the point of complicity in the Syrian abattoir. Meanwhile, Iran remains as implacably hostile and as determined to be a regional hegemon as ever.

    That is the context of Trump’s fawning reception. “Welcome, President Not Obama!”

  • Know who else funds President Trump a big step up from Obama? historically black colleges.
  • Mom’s advice to her son: Don’t marry a feminist. (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • China has a huge debt problem. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Social Justice Warriors hound Portland burrito company out of business for “cultural appropriation.” This is why you can’t have nice things… (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Sea level guages show the oceans rising…but much more slowly than global warming alarmists predict.
  • Manchester bombing proves one of the most important element of preparedness is learning first aid skills.
  • Latest academic hoax: “the conceptual penis.”
  • He may not be President, but Ted Cruz is still the hero we need. (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • Robber, robber, pants on fire!
  • Enjoy your weekend!

    Summarizing The Stupidity Of That Washington Post Trump Shared Intel Story

    Wednesday, May 17th, 2017

    Let me see if I can summarize the interlocking rings of stupidity on that Washington Post story that President Trump allegedly shared super-duper mega-secret intelligence on the Islamic State with Russians.

    A newspaper that has long functioned as an extension of the Democratic Party and which has endlessly covered up Obama Administration scandals, that hates President Donald Trump, lied about him during and after the 2016 Presidential campaign, and just called for his impeachment, publishes a story that depends 100% on anonymous sources to make assertions of improper intelligence sharing with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, allegations which were denied by every U.S. official who was actually in the room when this supposed security breach happened, and about which National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster states that President Trump did not actually know the source of the intelligence methods that were theoretically compromised during the meeting.

    It’s not that I trust everything Donald Trump says, it’s simply that, for all his bullshitting, negotiating ploys and verbal gamesmanship, I trust President Trump far more than the media that irrationally loathes and despises him, especially when it comes to 100% anonymous sources, who are most likely swamp holdovers who already hated Trump, will do anything to see him fail, and will not be punished in any way if the story turns out to be fabricated from whole cloth.

    And here’s the kicker: Since it is well within the President’s power to declassify information, I really don’t care if he did share intelligence with the Russians. The Russians are scumbags and a geopolitical foe, but they’re against the Islamic State, the subject of the supposed shared intelligence, mainly because their client states Syria and Iran are against them. I don’t trust Trump as much I would trust Reagan, Bush41 or Bush43 to properly conduct foreign policy and dole out classified intelligence, but I still trust him several orders of magnitude more than Obama or Clinton functionaries or their extensions working for the Washington Post. (Given that the Post recently hired Clinton fixer John Podesta, the man who helped create the Russia hacked the election narrative, as a columnist, there are obviously cases were those two roles are actually one and the same…)

    Scenes From The Continuing Liberal Freakout

    Monday, May 15th, 2017

    Remember the great liberal freakout after Donald Trump was elected President of the United States of America?

    I started working on a blog post on some of the juiciest outbursts of Trump Derrangement Syndrome. For example:

  • Here’s Jamelle Bouie in Slate turning the stupid up to 11: “Brothers in White Resentment: What gave us Donald Trump is what gave us Dylann Roof.”
  • I thought at first this might be a parody. Nope:

  • Shaun King is gonna Shaun King, because that white boy is way cray cray (though he later deleted this tweet):

  • Occupy Democrats pulled overtime in their vast underground meme farms:

    And there’s more where that came from.

  • The modern haruspices among our social scientists rearranged the goat entrails to grade Trump worse than Hitler:

    Donald Trump has more psychopathic traits than Adolf Hitler, according to a a new study.

    Using a standard psychometric tool, Dr Kevin Dutton of Oxford University ranked both presidential candidates and a series of historical world figures.

    Trump scored 171, achieving two more points than Adolf Hitler, after experts gave their suggestions on how each individual would have scored against a series of questions.

  • Noam Chomsky Godwins all over his pants.
  • Liberal Muslim: “I voted for Trump due to ObamaCare.” Liberal college professor: “FUCK YOU, GO TO HELL.” (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Then there’s the perfectly balanced individual in Dallas who cancelled his holiday party because some of the people there might have voted for Trump. I’m sure his friend will be bitterly disappointed at not topping up their supply of Smug.
  • And don’t forget the liberal woman who became enraged that non-liberal men might find her attractive. “Preferable, I now think, is to stop laughing, to become as repulsive as I can in an insult to these men.” It’s actually more loony than I’m making it sound. (Hat tip: The Other McCain.)
  • I never finished that first post because there was just too much material to fit in.

    Given all that, you’d think liberals would have burned themselves out from all the crazy by now, but as Kurt Schlichter notes, their freakout continues apace, it’s just taken other forms:

    Pity the Democrats, to the extent you can without bursting into hysterical laughter at their agony. America has thoroughly rejected them in every branch of the federal government plus out in the states, and on top of that they were utterly humiliated by the guy they all claimed was a complete moron. Which begs the question – what does that make the sanctimonious harpy he crushed in the Electoral College?

    They still haven’t realized what’s going on. Their ego-driven drive to dominate normal people and shape us into New Socialist Nongendered Beings has blinded them to the bitter reality.

    We think they, along with their minions in the media, in Hollywood, and on campus, suck.

    They are baffled at our refusal to acknowledge their moral, intellectual, and political superiority. It doesn’t just compute.

    Yeah, well compute this, geebos.

    You look nuts. I mean wacko, zonked out, “Hey, that goldfish is firing a mind control laser at my brain and making me break dance” nuts.

    But don’t stop. No, pump it up. You’re at “11,” and I say take it to “12.”

    This is great!

    All this insanity is going to help us normals retain power, from your gyno-hat marches to the fake hate crimes to your insistence that the Russians are responsible for everything from Hillary losing the election to the rarely-discussed but well-known liberal epidemic of ED.

    Here’s a little test. It’s been about six months since Trump treated The Smartest Most Accomplished Woman In The World like a NordicTrack treats Harry Reid, and does anyone know even one person who has said, “You know, I voted for Trump, but now after Neil Gorsuch, General Mattis and H.R. McMaster, I really wish I had checked the box for Felonia von Pantsuit?”

    Snip.

    “Yeah, I really regret not letting Hillary pick a SCOTUS judge who thinks the Constitution bans guns but mandates taxpayer-subsidized transsexual abortions!”

    “Wow, that 70% drop in illegal alien entries into America and all those deportations of MS-13 guys are depriving the country of valuable, productive future Democrat voters!”

    “Gosh, I hate so much how Trump has paid attention to that sliver of our country lying between I-5 and I-95!”

    “It was Ashley Judd’s v-cap slam poetry, combined with Bill Nye’s sex confusion clip, that convinced me what America needs is liberals back in power!”

    No one.

    No one who voted for Trump has ever said any of those things. Oh, they might have voted for him reluctantly, but no statistically significant slice of them wish they hadn’t.

    But the Democrats work under the assumption that such folk exist and are receptive to their tantrums. Good! These liberals are crazy, and they’re stupid, and we totally need to encourage them to keep doing crazy, stupid things.

    Speaking of calm, rational liberal responses to President Trump, the Washington Post calls for his impeachment over his perfectly legal firing of James Comey.

    Finally, there’s the lunatic “gender fluidity” the hard left seems to be clinging to in defiance of nature and common sense. The latest example: A parent proud of their eight year old drag queen. (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)

    There are plenty of rational critiques of some of President Trump’s policies. But no one is going to listen to them while liberals act like deranged lunatics.

    LinkSwarm for May 5, 2017

    Friday, May 5th, 2017

    Happy Cinco de Mayo, the holiday that celebrates the French army getting their asses kicked by Mexicans!

    A bunch of big news that everyone and their dog has been covering at the top of the LinkSwarm:

  • Big News 1: Despite having the House, Senate and White House, House Republicans spinelessly cave on budget negotiations. “It is noteworthy for what it does not include: namely, most of Donald Trump’s and Republicans’ recent campaign promises. The bill does not defund Planned Parenthood. It does not include any of the president’s deep cuts to domestic agencies. Public broadcasting is funded at current levels. The National Endowment for the Arts’ budget is increased. There’s even funding for California’s high-speed rail.”
  • Big News 2: House Republicans also passed an ObamaCare replacement bill.
  • Consensus is that it sucks less than both ObamaCare and the March versions of the bill, but still sucks plenty. The Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Chip Roy had this to say in a press release:

    “Today, conservative leaders in the House brought the American people a glimmer of hope that states might save American healthcare from the clutches of a federally controlled and regulated system under Obamacare,” said Roy. “This improved version of the American Health Care Act grants governors the ability to seek waivers from the onerous Obamacare regulations that unfortunately remain in place as the default rule even under this bill. This means governors would have both the opportunity and the burden of leading to free their states from these default regulations.”

    “Further reform remains necessary, however, as the bill retains far too much of Obamacare’s flawed Medicaid expansion, replaces one form of subsidy with an even more expansive one in the form of a refundable tax credit, creates a $138 billion slush fund for insurers, and leaves almost all of Obamacare’s cost-driving regulations and mandates as the federal standard,” Roy continued. “As the bill heads to the Senate, we hope it will be improved, at least by allowing states to opt in to Obamacare rather than forcing states to temporarily, partially opt out.”

  • By one account, the ObamaCare replacement amounts to a $1 trillion tax cut. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • French runoff Presidential elections happen Sunday. The overwhelming favorite Emmanuel Macron is being pummeled by leaked documents (sound familiar?) that suggest he’s been avoiding taxes using offshore accounts. Naturally French prosecutors are ready to pounce…on those spreading the allegations.
  • Texas legislation to repeal sanctuary cities heads to Governor Abbott’s desk.
  • And Travis County sheriff Sally Hernandez even says she’ll obey the law. Imagine that!
  • The Baltimore State’s Attorney’s Office want police to know that illegal aliens have more rights than American citizens and shouldn’t be prosecuted.
  • President Trump’s insistence on actually enforcing immigration laws is already paying dividends.

    The concrete, realpolitik reason that amnesty is dead is that the appropriate law enforcement policies have been set in motion and they are gaining momentum fast!

    I have long argued that the illegal alien community in the United States is highly fragile. President Trump’s executive order directing Immigration and Customs Authorities and Border Patrol officers to broadly interpret their jurisdiction for capturing and removing illegal aliens has had the immediate effect of decreasing attempts to cross the border as well as inspiring panic in illegal immigrant communities. Police officers and county sheriffs have told me that, even at the height of the Obama era of nonenforcement, illegal aliens shunned the police. Now, in the era of Trump, the possibility of going to work and ending your week in Mexico is a real and potent threat. (This is particularly true if you live, as I do, in Massachusetts). It is a commonplace that law enforcement professionals go to sleep muttering “5% enforcement equals 95% compliance.”

    At the same time, businesses cannot prosper in an environment of uncertainty. The initial impulse of business owners in agriculture and other illegal-alien-heavy industries is to demand, yet again, some succor from the government in terms of work permits for their illegal workers. Just such measures are championed by incoming Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue. However, assuming this relief is not forthcoming in the near future (and I’ll get to that in a minute) the only rational policy is for business owners to begin exploring their other options — which might include automation or wage increases.

    When every small business owner in America finally takes paper and pencil and sits down at the kitchen table with their spouse and says “honey, we are going to have to figure out how to make our business work when we can’t hire illegal aliens anymore,” then and only then will the light appear at the end of the tunnel.

    But the key to the problem and the reason for optimism is this: with the law now being enforced, however incrementally, even without funds for more agents, even without funds for the Wall, even without E-Verify, the pressure to re-evaluate in the illegal alien and the business communities will only grow. The success of the policy in reducing the inflow and initiating “self-deportation” will feed back on itself. For years the only salient argument of the open borders advocates on both the right and the left was that enforcing the current laws on the books was impossible. As it becomes obvious how easy, in fact, enforcement is, those advocates will be forced to rely on their more avaricious motives for keeping illegal aliens here.

  • One in four federal inmates is foreign born. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Why Hillary lost, Part 6974: Voters who went for Obama in 2012 and Trump in 2016.
  • Welcome back my friends to the 2016 election that never ends, we’re so glad you could attend, come inside, come inside. There behind the glass is a pile of Hillary’s foreign cash, be careful as you pass, move along, move along. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Even Dianne Feinstein says there’s no evidence of Russian meddling in the election. (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • President Trump is more trusted than the national media.
  • Democratic Rep. Joaquin Castro decides not to run against Ted Cruz. Smart move.
  • Did a Pakistani ISI assassin defect to India? Sources say: Maybe not.
  • Netflix deletes Bill Nye segment from 1996 that talks about how chromosomes determine sex. When science clashes with the current smelly orthodoxies of liberal dogma, it seems that science gets the axe.
  • Following Victims of Communism Day, here are ten films on the victims of Communism. These appear to be all documentaries.
  • VA official who kept secret wait lists veterans died on fired. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Puerto Rico declares bankruptcy.
  • Is Russia arming the Taliban?
  • “A New Instance of Android Malware is Discovered Every 10 Seconds.”
  • Leftists try to take over the Humble school board.
  • And don’t forget the Rond Rock Bond issue vote this Saturday.
  • Lunatic scumbag street-preacher/tax evader/child molester Tony Alamo dies in prison. (Hat tip: Dwight.)
  • Auction for a treasure trove of early material on the Nation of Islam. Including two manuscripts handwritten by founder Wallace Fard Muhammad, who disappeared in 1934. Alas, the opening bid is a tad steep for my blood…
  • LinkSwarm for April 28, 2017

    Friday, April 28th, 2017

    It’s been a week, so enjoy an extra-late Friday LinkSwarm

  • There’s lots of meat in President Trump’s tax reform proposal:

    Individual Reform

    Tax relief for American families, especially middle-income families:

  • Reducing the 7 tax brackets to 3 tax brackets of to%, 25% and 35%
  • Doubling the standard deduction
  • Providing tax relief for families with child and dependent care expenses
  • Simplification:

  • Eliminate targeted tax breaks that mainly benefit the wealthiest taxpayers
  • Protect the home ownership and charitable gift tax deductions
  • Repeal the Alternative Minimum Tax
  • Repeal the death tax
  • Repeal the 3.8% Obamacare tax that hits small businesses and investment income
  • Business Reform

  • 15% business tax rate
  • Territorial tax system to level the playing field for American companies
  • One-time tax on trillions of dollars held overseas
  • Eliminate tax breaks for special interests
  • Texas House passes anti-Santuary City bill that fines officials for violating federal immigration laws.
  • North Korean ballistic missile test fails. Cue the sad trombone.

  • Obama’s Iran deal was even worse than we thought. “By dropping charges against major arms targets, the administration infuriated Justice Department officials — and undermined its own counterproliferation task forces.”
  • If Democrats keep moving left, they could experience another election like 1972:

    The highest-profile Democratic-party supporters are increasingly smug Hollywood actors, rich Wall Street and Silicon Valley elitists, and embittered members of the media, along with careerist identity groups and assorted protest movements — a fossilized 1972 echo chamber.

    Democrats’ politically correct messaging derides opponents as deplorable racists, sexists, bigots, xenophobes, homophobes, Islamophobes, and nativists. That shrill invective only further turns off Middle America. Being merely anti-Trump is no more a successful Democratic agenda than being anti-Nixon was in 1972.

  • If the election were held today, Trump would still beat Clinton.
  • Former Mayor of Hubbard, Ohio pleads guilty to raping a four year old. Go ahead, guess which party he’s a member of.
  • The Other McCain does his part for sexual assault awareness month.
  • The media does indeed live in a bubble, both geographic and ideological, of its own making.
  • Hundreds of illegal voters in North Carolina. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Nancy Pelosi: tried, drunk or stroke? (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • 107 Cancer Papers Retracted Due To Peer Review Fraud. But don’t worry: All climate science is completely on the level…
  • When Democratic Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke swore up and down he never hire any campaign consultants, what he meant was he’d hire some.
  • “Facebook and Google confirmed as victims of $100M phishing scam.” (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • President Trump as a systems thinking President.
  • NYPD corruption scandal. Bribes? Check. Guns? Check. Prostitutes? Check. (Hat tip: Dwight.)
  • Marine Le Pen heads to a runoff with Emmanuel Macron on May 7. Is there a better figurehead for modern Globalism than a Socialist investment banker?
  • Dishonest medical equipment startup Theranos used a shell company to secretly buy outside lab equipment to actually run the lab tests they were faking as coming from their own equipment. And check out that picture caption: “[CEO] Elizabeth Holmes speaks at the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting.” Because of course she did.
  • Liberals love denouncing the imaginary Christian theocracy of The Handmaid’s Tale (now a miniseries) because it keeps them from having to think about the real Islamic ones oppressing women all over the world right at this very moment.
  • Related: “Lesbian Couple Discover Islamic Culture During Exciting International Trip.”
  • “When God sends a Plague of Wild Boars against you, he’s done sending messages, and is now sending armored bacon.”
  • Less than half of Democrats know a gun owner.
  • Richard Gere blacklisted in Hollywood on China’s orders.
  • Sonny Bunch has some “helpful” advice for Democrats. (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • Nordstrom selling $425 fake muddy jeans. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • You too can own a baseball inscribed to Justice Antonin Scalia by Joe DiMaggio.
  • “My Boyfriend Ate Nothing But Pineapple For A Week And Now His Dick Is Covered In Bees.”
  • SchadESPNfreude

    Thursday, April 27th, 2017

    You may have heard that ESPN has laid off at least 100 on-air employees. ESPN is the latest company to choose between being liberal and being profitable, and choosing liberal.

    You want to watch the Lakers game? Okay, but first you’re going to hear about Caitlyn Jenner. Want some NFL highlights? We’ll get to those eventually, but coming up next will be a discussion about how North Carolina is run by racist, homophobic bigots. You want to see the box scores of today’s baseball games? You can watch those at the bottom of the hour, but right now some D-list network talent would like to lecture you about gun control. After that we’ll have a panel discussion about how much courage it takes to turn your back on the American flag.

    The most interesting aspect of the mass layoffs on Wednesday isn’t that they happened, it’s who the network targeted. Not the high-priced carnival barkers and the know-nothing loudmouths doing their best to make Rachel Maddow proud. Nope. ESPN targeted sports reporters. In an effort to cut some fat from its bottom line, ESPN exchanged a scalpel for a chainsaw, skipped the fat entirely, and went straight to cutting out muscle.

    If ESPN wants to once again be the worldwide leader in sports, it should refocus on covering sports, which used to be a refuge from politics and the news. America is politicized enough already, and if its citizens want political news, several cable outlets do political news far better than ESPN ever could. Instead of doing sports and politics poorly, perhaps the network could return to the thing that it used to do better than everyone else in the world: cover live sports.

    To be sure there were a lot of other contributing factors (rising fixed costs from overpaying for sports, people dropping cable, etc.), but the relentless left-wing culture war slant was among the most avoidable of all ESPN’s self-inflicted wounds.

    More reactions:

    Texas vs. California Update for April 20, 2017

    Thursday, April 20th, 2017

    This didn’t get done while I was doing my taxes, but here, at last, is another giant Texas vs. California update:

  • Appeals court finds San Diego’s pension reform legal. “California’s Fourth District Court of Appeal unanimously overturned a 2015 state labor board ruling that said the cutbacks were illegal because of then-Mayor Jerry Sanders’ involvement in the successful citizens’ initiative that made the changes.” San Diego transitioned to a 401K style program. Naturally public employee unions screamed bloody murder and sought to have the reforms overturned. (Hat tip: Pension Tsunami.)
  • Unions attempts to role back San Diego’s pension reforms amounted to an attempt to retroactively apply collective bargaining to older laws.
  • More: It’s “shocking the agency’s officials would have even argued that a union’s right to negotiate pay and benefits trumps the public’s right to hold an election.” (Hat tip: Pension Tsunami.)
  • “The number of people enrolled in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) in California alone exceeds the total populations of 44 of the other states of the union, according to data published by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Census Bureau.” (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • California exports its working poor to Texas.

    Every year from 2000 through 2015, more people left California than moved in from other states. This migration was not spread evenly across all income groups, a Sacramento Bee review of U.S. Census Bureau data found. The people leaving tend to be relatively poor, and many lack college degrees. Move higher up the income spectrum, and slightly more people are coming than going.

    About 2.5 million people living close to the official poverty line left California for other states from 2005 through 2015, while 1.7 million people at that income level moved in from other states – for a net loss of 800,000. During the same period, the state experienced a net gain of about 20,000 residents earning at least five times the poverty rate – or $100,000 for a family of three.

    Snip.

    The leading destination for those leaving California is Texas, with about 293,000 economically disadvantaged residents leaving and about 137,000 coming for a net loss of 156,000 from 2005 through 2015. Next up are states surrounding California; in order, Arizona, Nevada and Oregon.

  • Hat tip for the above is this Zero Hedge piece, which notes “By some measures, California has the highest poverty rate in the nation. And as more and more residents leave, the burden to fund the state’s welfare exuberance will fall more and more on the wealthier (that actually pay taxes). Rather than secession, perhaps it’s time for the wealthy to join ‘the poor’ exodus and beat the crowd out of California…”
  • A look at a California tent city of 1,000 people.
  • Kevin Williamson on why Houston’s diversity is different than the liberal ideal of same:

    Living in a place where it is less of a struggle to pay the rent or make the mortgage payment does indeed chill most everybody out a little bit. But it is not at all obvious that what Houston — or Texas at large — enjoys is in fact a culture that is generally welcoming to immigrants in a way that is different from Scottsdale or Trenton or Missoula. What Texas does have is something close to the opposite of that: a large and very well-integrated Mexican-American community. Anglos in Texas aren’t welcoming to Latinos because we are in some way uniquely open to the unfamiliar, but because they are not unfamiliar.

    This matters in ways that are not obvious if you didn’t grow up with it. My native West Texas, along with the whole of the border and much of the rest of the state, has a longstanding, stable Anglo–Latin hybrid culture. Houston does, too, but Houston, being a very large city, is a little more complicated; I had lunch yesterday with a conservative leader who chatted amiably with the staff in Spanish at . . . an Indian restaurant.

    That robust hybrid culture ensures that the people Anglos hear speaking Spanish are not always poor, not mowing the lawn or cleaning a hotel room, that they are not usually immigrants, not people who cannot speak or read English — not alien. They are neighbors who, if you are lucky, make Christmas tamales. And they might be your employer or your employee, the guy who sells you a car or approves your car loan, a pastor at your church, a professor, a member of your Ultimate Frisbee team . . . or an illegal immigrant, or a criminal, or someone who is in some way unassimilated, alien, or threatening. When one out of three people in your county is “Hispanic” — a word that in Texas overwhelmingly means “Mexican-American” — then you tend to know Hispanic people of all descriptions: the good, the bad, and the ordinary.

    That is not the case in, say, Arlington, Va., which does not have a large and well-assimilated Mexican-American population but does have a large and poorly assimilated population of Spanish-speaking immigrants. The two things are not the same — more like opposites. Add to that the fact, sometimes lost on Anglos, that there is no such thing as a “Hispanic” culture or population, that people with roots in Mexico do not think of themselves as being part of a single cultural group that includes people from Central America and South America. A while back, I heard an older fellow of Mexican background complaining about the Guatemalans moving into his area — and he was an illegal immigrant. That’s a funny reality: In Texas, even some of the illegals don’t think that we can let just anybody cross the border. But ethnic politics is a strange business: In West Texas, young whites without much money (college students and the like) who would never for a moment seriously consider moving into a low-income black neighborhood will not give a second thought to moving into a largely Hispanic neighborhood.

    All of which is not to say that Texas does not have a fair number of poorly assimilated Spanish-speaking immigrants: It surely does, especially in the big cities. (People forget how urban Texas is: Six of the 20 largest U.S. cities are in Texas.) But it is easier to accommodate — and, one hopes, to assimilate — those newcomers when you have a culture of mutual familiarity and trust, which is based not on newcomers but on oldcomers. Texas’s ancient Mexican-American community — whose members famously boast, “We didn’t cross the border, the border crossed us!” — is a kind of buffer that makes absorbing newcomers less stressful.

  • Leaving coastal California is a ‘no-brainer‘ for some as housing costs rise.”

    Huntington Beach residents Chris Birtwistle and Allison Naitmazi were about to get married and decided it was time to buy a home.

    They wanted to stay in the area but couldn’t find a house they both liked and could reasonably afford — despite a dual income of around $150,000.

    So they decided to go inland — all the way to Arizona, where they recently opened escrow on a $240,000, four-bedroom house with a pool just outside Phoenix. Their monthly mortgage payment will be about $500 less than what they paid for a two-bedroom apartment in the Orange County beach community.

  • “California again leads list with 6 of the top 10 most polluted U.S. cities.” Versus zero for Texas. So they have the nation’s most stringent pollution laws…and the nation’s worst air pollution. (Golf clap) (Hat tip: Chuck DeVore’s Twitter feed.)
  • 16 Reasons Not To Live In California. Samples (snippage implied):

    #2 Out of all 50 states, the state of California has been ranked as the worst state for business for 12 years in a row…
    #3 California has the highest state income tax rates in the entire nation. For many Americans, the difference between what you would have to pay if you lived in California and what you would have to pay if you lived in Texas could literally buy a car every single year.
    #4 The state government in Sacramento seems to go a little bit more insane with each passing session.
    #5 The traffic in the major cities just keeps getting worse and worse. According to USA Today, Los Angeles now has the worst traffic in the entire world, and San Francisco is not far behind.

  • CalSTRS’ funded status falls to 64% as deficit grows $21 billion following rate reduction.” (Hat tip: Pension Tsunami.)
  • Texas is on its way to passing a conservative budget.
  • A Democrat-sponsored bill in the California legislature guarantees free healthcare for all, without specifying a way to pay for it. Maybe they’ll institute a unicorn tax… (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • Leslie Eastman at Legal Insurrection spells out exactly what Californians would actually get under the plan:
    • With no choice, there is no competition, unless you are wealthy enough to leave the state for medical care. However, this is a golden opportunity for medical tourism companies!
    • There will be a limited supply of doctors, as those who don’t want to go through the bureaucratic hoops for procedures and payment will also leave the state.
    • Clinicians will be forced to make their treatment decisions based on the state-run rules: Why choose surgery when a pill will do?
    • Shockingly, some funds need to be directed to other budget items instead of perks for illegal aliens (refer to Oroville Dam for a handy reference).
    • Medicare, the system that is the foundation for this proposal, is rife with waste, fraud and abuse (e.g., 3 Floridians bilked the system for $1 billion).
    • Co-pays and deductibles will be transformed into monies paid for non-state government healthcare services (like the Canadians who cross into the United States to obtain MRI’s and other innovative treatments).
    • Public oversight will translate into political wheeling-and-dealing strictly for the benefit of those plugged into the rigged system. An indication that Sacramento may be headed for such a system, I offer this piece published in The Sacramento Bee for consideration: Why California must accept more corruption.
    • The cost of drugs has soared, despite Obamacare. As an example, I had a skin medication that would cost me $150 for an annual supply. The same medication now costs nearly $1000 a year, and I no longer use it.
  • In order to further bestow members of the ruling Democratic coalition with rights and privileges mere citizens don’t enjoy, California’s Senate Bill 807 proposes making teachers exempt from state income tax. Some pigs are evidently way, way more equal than others…
  • Teacher’s unions have helped create California’s teacher shortage. (Hat tip: Pension Tsunami.)
  • California hikes its gas taxes yet again, making them the highest in the nation.
  • Pension liabilities are pinching in Gilroy, California: “Gilroy’s three biggest public employers have amassed more than $183 million in unpaid pension liabilities. That’s likely more than ever, and a figure that, absent major reform, will grow and siphon budget funds from essential public services, say officials and pension experts. In Gilroy, 23 city pensions exceed $100,000 and more than 60 exceed $70,000.” (Hat tip: Pension Tsunami.)
  • Court to determine whether California’s public employee union members can simply continue to buy years of service rather than actually working them.
  • Silicon Valley slows down. “Tech companies in San Francisco and San Mateo counties lost 700 jobs from January to February and tech employment has dropped by 3,200 jobs since hitting a peak last August.”
  • What the lords of Silicon Valley actually think: “Inequality is a feature, not a bug.”
  • Hold on to your seats for this one: California’s government actually did something right, legalizing the selling of home-made food. (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • “Hotel construction continues apace in the United States, and dozens of new properties are expected to open this year in two major corporate and tourist destinations, New York and Los Angeles. But the three other cities with the most hotels projected to open in 2017, according to the industry research company STR, are all in Texas — Dallas, Houston and Austin.” Notice the implied condescension in the NYT piece: New York and LA are real places, whereas Dallas, Houston and Austin are “other cities.”

    More:

    The number of new hotels in Texas is notable. In 2017, Marriott plans to open eight hotels in Austin, seven in Houston and 23 in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, according to the company. Ninety-two other Marriott hotels are in the planning stages for the three metro areas. Hilton says it is planning for 75 new hotels there. InterContinental Hotels Group has more than 100 hotel projects in the Austin, Dallas and Houston metro areas, including the Candlewood Suites, Crowne Plaza, Even Hotels, Holiday Inn Express, Holiday Inn, Hotel Indigo, InterContinental Hotels and Resorts and Staybridge Suites brands.

    Austin is home to the state capital; the University of Texas at Austin, a campus with 50,000 students; and a long list of technology companies. Its growing recreation and dining scene is attracting more leisure travelers, filling guest rooms on weekends and making the city “more of a seven-day-a-week hotel market,” according to Tim Powell, the managing director for development for Hilton’s southwest region.

  • A bankruptcy judge in the Eastern District of California plays Santa Claus with a bank’s money.
  • Just what illegal aliens cost California.
  • “L.A. To Worsen Housing Shortage With New Rent Controls.”
  • “California Dems Promise Taxpayer Dollars to Defend Illegal Immigrants.” (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • Calpers Is Sick of Paying Too Much for Private Equity…Pension fund’s private-equity returns were 12.3% over 20 years, but they would have been 19.3% without fees and costs.” (WSJ hoops apply.) (Hat tip: Pension Tsunami.)
  • “Texas top state for number of new, expanded corporate facilities for fifth consecutive year.”
  • It’s not just Oroville Dam that needs maintenance: a section of Highway 50 collapsed in February. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • “Jerry Brown wants to spend nearly $450 million on flood control following dam emergency.”
  • “A state senator is removed from the chamber for her comments about Tom Hayden and Vietnam.” Namely for noting that Hayden supported “a communist government that enslaved and/or killed millions of Vietnamese, including members of my own family.” Sen. Janet Nguyen (R-Garden Grove) came to America as a Vietnamese refugee, and Democrats were incensed she was allowed to speak truth to power when it came to hagiography for one of their own. (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • Crime Increasing in California After ‘Prison Reform.'”
  • Selling carbon indulgences just isn’t what it used to be under Trump:

    February’s quarterly auction of carbon dioxide emission allowances under California’s cap and trade program was another financial washout for the state.

    Results for last week’s auction were posted Wednesday morning, revealing that just 16.5 percent of the 74.8 million metric tons of emission allowances were sold at the floor price of $13.57 per ton.

    The state auctions emission allowances to polluters and speculators as part of its program to reduce greenhouse gases. The proceeds are supposed to be spent on public programs to slow climate change.

    February’s auction is being closely watched by market analysts because the last three quarterly auctions in 2016 posted sub-par results.

    Almost all of February’s proceeds went either to California’s utilities, who sell allowances they receive free from the Air Resources Board, or the Canadian province of Quebec, which offers emission allowances through California. Both are first in line when auction proceeds are apportioned.

    The ARB was offering 43.7 million tons of state-owned emission allowances, but sold just 602,340 tons of advance 2020 allowances, which means the state will see only $8.2 million, rather than the nearly $600 million it could have received from a sellout.

    (Hat tip: Chuck DeVore on Twitter.)

  • California’s high speed train-to-nowhere is still doomed.
  • “Six former LA safety officers collected pension payouts of over $1,000,000 apiece last year.” (Hat tip: Pension Tsunami.)
  • “Oakland Fire Chief Announces Retirement Days After Pension Vested, Warehouse Fire Probe Continues.”
  • San Rafael has the the highest pension costs in California by percentage of their total budget (18%). “Money that goes to one thing can’t go to another thing, so if you’re spending almost $1 out of $5 on pension payments, that is a lot less money available for tangible public services such as filling potholes, keeping the library open and making sure there is sufficient police protection.”
  • Remember Anthony Silva, mayor of formerly bankrupt Stockton? He’s been arrested again, this time for embezzling “at least $74,000 from the Stockton Kids Club over the past five years.” That would be the same Anthony Silva who is a member of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, whose own guns were stolen and used in crimes, and who was also arrested for “for playing strip poker with minor and giving them alcohol while at a youth camp.” Given such august leadership, I can’t imagine how Stockton went bankrupt… (Hat tip: Dwight.)
  • New survey of the Permian Basin in Texas shows that there’s another 20 billion barrels of recoverable oil than previously thought.
  • More on the fracking boom:

  • Minimum wage hike watch: Wendy’s to try out more than 1000 self-serve kiosks.
  • San Francisco’s wage hike is already closing restaurants. Especially those that serve affordable food. (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • California’s “hide actor’s age” law struck down.
  • “Former L.A. County Sheriff Lee Baca found guilty on obstruction of justice and other charges.” (Hat tip: Dwight.)
  • I would like to celebrate Austin Austin having the shortest commute time in this study of major cities except, since I now experience that commute time every weekday, I can tell you that 16 minute estimate is utter crap. Maybe Austin is the best if the commute time for other cities is similarly underestimated. By contrast, the Austin rental rate of $476 a week seems slightly high, while the London rate of $489 a week seems way too low…
  • Kubota Tractor Corp. finished its’ U.S. headquarters from Torrance, California, to Grapevine, Texas. (Previously.)
  • “West Plano’s $3 billion Legacy West development has landed another big name business. Boeing will locate the headquarters for its newly formed global services division in the 250-acre mixed-use project at the Dallas North Tollway and State Highway 121.”
  • Los Angeles-based fashion company Nasty Gal declares bankruptcy. Also, nice proofreading on this subhead, LA Times: “Why couldn’t they the company hold on to shoppers?” Note: That’s still up for a story published February 24th…
  • Los Angeles clothing brand BCBG Max Azria Group, owner of Hervé Leger, also filed for bankruptcy.
  • The City of St. Louis sues the NFL, and all 32 NFL teams, over the Rams relocation to Los Angeles.
  • “L.A. County Sheriff’s Department switches from silver to gold belt buckles at a cost of $300,000.” That’s some might fine resource allocation there, Lou… (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)