Sunday, February 19, 2017

 

More Self Delusion

I am convinced that Chuck Todd views himself as a fair minded neutral journalist. He is blind to the beam in his eye. Here's an example from less than an hour ago. He had the somewhat squirrelly Reince Priebus on, as usual, and spent about 80% of the time talking about Mike Flynn and some vague, nefarious Russian connection of the Trump campaign with Russian 'agents'. It is as clear as the nose on anyone's face that Donald Trump is a sleeper Russian agent, a sort of Manchurian Candidate, so endless questions about this are clearly germane. But when answering a question/accusation that the White House was in chaos, Reince started to list the good things the White House has accomplished and Chuck Todd cut him off and promised to let him talk about the successes later.

And then he never let him talk about it.

That doesn't seem to be fair minded neutrality to me, but then I am evil and stupid, as lefty friends are at pains to point out to me. I'm not yet ready to go full belief that the Press is an enemy of the people, but they are just awful at their jobs. Almost all of them. For the past 20 years they have acted as Democratic operatives with a by-line* and in the past two years have stopped even pretending that they are fair minded and neutral. We noticed. Which is why the Press is lower than whale slime in the polls for trustworthiness.

I believe most rational thinking people believe a free press is an important bulwark against governmental overreach, but if nearly all the free press is of one party and makes no attempt to hide the members' collective desire to help that party and hurt the opposition (as it is now), how is that helping the American people?

*classical reference at Instapundit


Of course, when the Democrats have the same sort of contact with foreign nations as is alleged against the Trump campaign, that means it is not illegal and certainly not worth a single story in our glorious free press.



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Friday, February 17, 2017

 

Mind-Numbing Self-Unawareness

I haven't watched Bill Maher in a long time. The only thing I really liked was the "New Rules" segment anyway, but I have to admit that he is politically incorrect about Muslim Jihadis (but logically, historically, morally correct about them) and once in a blue moon he is willing to speak truth to liberal power. This might be one of those times.

Rather than wade through the article, here is the money quote from Jeremy Scahill (whoever that is) who won't be on the show if it is contaminated by the presence of gay gadfly Milo Yiannopoulos. He cites his reasons for not appearing:

Yiannopoulos’ appearance could also be used to incite violence against immigrants, transgender people, and others at a time when the Trump administration is already seeking to formalize a war against some of the most vulnerable people in our society.
I don't know if you've been keeping up with current events, Jeremy, but your ilk are the only ones using violence against vulnerable people in our society.

And high on the stupid meter is the term "formalize a war against..." What, do you think Trump is going to Congress (like FDR on 12/8/41) and asking for a formal declaration of war? I'm sure Mr. Scahill is of normal intelligence (pretty sure), but the ignorance evident in his position and statements is awesome.

Sorry I'm going to miss him on the show. Sounds like a fun guy.

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Sunday, February 12, 2017

 

I'm With These Guys

Here is an article from the American Council on Science and Health which makes a lot of sense. Not perfect sense, mind you, but in the main they are right. I'll summarize: Small, fail-safe nuke reactors; drill, baby, drill in the meantime; and, if there is a break-through in solar technology and battery storage in the future, we can start the switch to that renewable then (despite the myriad problems with it even if there are such break-throughs);

Screw wind power--ugly, noisy, fickle, delicate, useless totems to the religion of man-made global warming. Oh, and the blades kill hundreds of thousands of birds and bats each year. You have to wonder, reasonably, if its supporters hate birds and bats.

I part ways with the American council at #4, throwing more federal money at research in solar and fusion. When I was a boy, fusion power plants were 30 to 40 years away. 50 years later they are still 30 to 40 years away. Not everything imaginable is achievable. I've always been troubled also by the inherent disconnect with fusion. So we re-create a miniature version of the sun and then we use it to boil water. Really? That's the plan?

But the biggest disagreement is over who should do the research and who should pay for it. The Council says the federal government should. The federal government couldn't find its ass even if it used both hands. The private sector as always is the creative force in our semi-capitalist economy/society. How much money we throw at the research would be a question of utility. I'm OK, as usual, with reasonably amounts spent on pure research with an emphasis on useful things. How promising the research seems would of course tilt us towards spending more federal money. Right now, the taxpayer money paid for solar and fusion research should be quite small, no more than a couple of hundred million a year. Let the people with the most to gain from success pay their fair share (which is almost all of it).

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Saturday, February 11, 2017

 

Bad Court Rulings

I'll start with a little bragging and context. One of the few legal talents I have is an ability to read a court decision and tell if it is legally sound or utter bs. I've been reviewing some of the more suspect Supreme Court decisions lately (such is my powerhouse social life). I'm adding Justice Kennedy's Boumediene v Bush decision to the top five worst.

But the subject of this is the decision by the 3 judge panel of 9th Circuit in Washington v Trump. You can read it for yourself here. It's pretty much utter bs.

Let's start with some constitutional doctrine which no rational person disputes. The President is given the executive power for the nation in Art. 2, Sec. 1; and in Sec. 2 he or she is given the bulk of the power to conduct governmental business overseas. We call that foreign policy. He or she is admonished to take care that the laws of the nation be faithfully executed. He or she is the commander in chief of the nation's armed forces. These grants of power and duty would seem to include defending the nation from foreign invasion. There is plenty of case law that says he or she has plenary power regarding foreign policy (but Treaties must be approved by the Senate overwhelmingly). Congress in Art. 1, Sec. 8 has the sole power and duty to establish a uniform rule of naturalization (so much for sanctuary cities).

So here is part of what Congress put into the rules of immigration (the first step of naturalization) in 1955 in 8 U.S.C. § 1182(f).

Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate.


So this law allows the President, and the President alone, to decide if stopping immigration of an individual or class of individuals is a good thing for the defense of the country. According to the often cited concurrence of Justice Jackson in the Youngstown case, the President is on firmest constitutional ground when he or she acts regarding an inherent power of the executive which is bolstered by a specific grant of power from Congress. That's exactly what we have here. So it would seem that President Trump was acting in the mainstream of his executive powers when he ordered that we're taking a 90 day break in letting in people, even those who have a visa, from the 7 nations whose citizens the Obama administration identified as not deserving of visa-less entry. But there are judges who say differently. That they didn't cite, quote or even mention the above quoted law is proof positive how worthless their decision was. It's like saying we're reviewing the constitutionality of a law and then not mentioning the law.


Green card holders may get to be treated like citizens but foreign nationals, outside our borders, have no constitutional rights whatsoever, the brilliance of Boumediene notwithstanding.


So screwed up is the decision right now that the best thing to do would be to cancel the Executive Order in question and rewrite it specifically exempting green card holders. Put in some facts about Islamic terrorism and why it is impossible to properly vet at this time the citizens seeking entry to the US from the 7 nations identified as a problem by the Obama administration.


Then dare the members of the judiciary blinded to their duty and limitations by political animus to stop the temporary ban again. Double dog dare them.


Better legal minds than I have come to a similar opinion here, here and here.

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Tuesday, February 07, 2017

 

The Senate Minority Under Sen. Chuck Schumer's Leadership

Just watched the Senate vote on confirming Ms. Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education. It was 50/50 and Vice President Mike "Doc Savage" Pence broke the tie and she's in, despite two Republican defections.

Gee, wasn't it a good idea to delay the vote on Sen. Jeff Sessions for Attorney General so he could be the 50th "aye" vote here? Brilliant.

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Sunday, February 05, 2017

 

Modest Proposal

I think we should compare the violent, lefty vandals in black, like the ones in Seattle in '99 or the ones at Berkeley days ago, only to the black shirts of Italy in the '30s, and not to the brown shirts in Germany at the same time. I say this for three reasons.

1. They share the same choice for an economic system as the Italians, a looser form of socialism tinged with anarcho/syndicalism;

2. They do wear black; and,

2. They're not as effective as the brown shirts of the National Socialist and German Worker's Party (now there's a name that screams out right wing). The neo-black shirts do piddling little things over piddling little perceived slights and are more annoyance than uprising.

The Nazis were evil but they were an effective evil. They got things done. I don't admire them for it but you can't read about the period without noticing it.

The Italians were more like these pathetic wannabes, but an order of magnitude more serious.

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Tuesday, January 31, 2017

 

Looking Favorably at Street Protests

Some on the left are very pleased with the street demonstrations against Trump and his policies and executive orders.

I'm glad too.

But I have an advantage. I was politically cognizant in the late '60s and early '70s and I know what the likely result of years of constantly whining in public with a lot of drama and dress-up will be.

6 straight years of demonstrations en masse led to this: The election of Richard Nixon, 520 electoral votes to McGovern's 17.

So get out there lefties. Let the world see your indignation and righteousness. Something as serious a threat as Donald Trump as president calls for drastic measures and conduct beyond the pale. Turn it up to 11. Speak Truth to Power. Power to the People!

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