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May 29, 2015

Overnight Open Thread (29 May 2015)

—CDR M

Standby for the Taliban Five world tour.

Continue reading


Posted by CDR M at 10:00 PM Comments



Politico: "Phoenix Braces for Anti-Islam Rally"

—Ace

Pushback to the blowback.

Less than a month after a shooting at a similar event in Texas, an anti-Islam rally in Phoenix has scheduled its own Muhammad cartoon-drawing contest.

The competition is set to take place Friday outside the Islamic Community Center in the Arizona city where Elton Simpson and Nadir Soofi -- the perpetrators of that attack -- used to worship.

In a Facebook event for the contest, titled "Freedom of Speech Rally Round II," organizer Jon Ritzheimer wrote, "This is in response to the recent attack in Texas where 2 armed terrorist, with ties to ISIS, attempted Jihad."

Ritzheimer, a former Marine, also wrote that protesters should come armed, expecting a confrontation.

Riot enthusiast and occasional racial-murder booster (he was a fan of that black California cop who went on a white-people-killin' spree) Marc Lamont Hill just can't even.


Posted by Ace at 07:03 PM Comments



John Podesta Comes Out as a Graftosexual

—Ace


What Team Hillary Means It To Say: We're fun, silly, and gay friendly

What It Actually Says: We'll give under-bridge hand-jays in exchange for donations to our "charity"

Posted by Ace at 06:12 PM Comments

AoSHQ Podcast: Guest, @KevinNR

—Andy

An HQ favorite, National Review's roving correspondent Kevin Williamson, joins Ace, Gabe, Drew and John on this week's episode. It's a good 'un. Enjoy.

Intro: Runnin' Down A Dream - Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers
Outro: Dirty Laundry - Don Henley

Listen: Stitcher | MP3 Download
Subscribe: rss.pngRSS | itunes_modern.pngiTunes

Browse (and even search!) the archives

Follow on Twitter

Don't forget to submit your Ask the Blog questions for next week's episode.

Open thread in the comments.

Posted by Andy at 04:58 PM Comments

A Tsunami of Graft: Bill Clinton Heroically Raised Money for the Tsunami Vicitms, By First Securing a $500,000 Payment For his "Charity"

—Ace

Motherf***ers.

There is a special place in hell for this clan of grifters.

Deborah Sontag reports:

To commemorate the 10th anniversary of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, Petra Nemcova, a Czech model who survived the disaster by clinging to a palm tree, decided to pull out all the stops for the annual fund-raiser of her school-building charity, the Happy Hearts Fund.

She booked Cipriani 42nd Street, which greeted guests with Bellini cocktails on silver trays. She flew in Sheryl Crow with her band and crew for a 20-minute set. She special-ordered heart-shaped floral centerpieces, heart-shaped chocolate parfaits, heart-shaped tiramisù and, because orange is the charity's color, an orange carpet rather than a red one. She imported a Swiss auctioneer and handed out orange rulers to serve as auction paddles, playfully threatening to use hers to spank the highest bidder for an Ibiza vacation.

The gala cost $363,413. But the real splurge? Bill Clinton.

The former president of the United States agreed to accept a lifetime achievement award at the June 2014 event after Ms. Nemcova offered a $500,000 contribution to the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation. The donation, made late last year after the foundation sent the charity an invoice, amounted to almost a quarter of the evening's net proceeds -- enough to build 10 preschools in Indonesia.


Happy Hearts' former executive director believes the transaction was a "quid pro quo," which rerouted donations intended for a small charity with the concrete mission of rebuilding schools after natural disasters to a large foundation with a broader agenda and a budget 100 times bigger.

"The Clinton Foundation had rejected the Happy Hearts Fund invitation more than once, until there was a thinly veiled solicitation and then the offer of an honorarium," said the former executive director, Sue Veres Royal, who held that position at the time of the gala and was dismissed a few weeks later amid conflicts over the gala and other issues.

A longer digest at Business Insider-- which notes it is "extremely rare" for one charity to pay money to another so-called "charity."

It also notes the charity that was supposedly getting the benefit of Clinton's star power raised less money the year he got his "award" than it did the previous year.

Meanwhile, the New York Times' resident Goof Nicholas Kristof claimed that we shouldn't blame the Clintons for the "charity" greed -- we should blame the campaign finance system.

One problem with this absurdity. Okay, two problems. Obviously, this is the go-to spin whenever a Democrat is found to be dirty -- it's the fault of the system, not of the person.

But Jim Geraghty points out a a problem so glaringly obvious you may have missed it -- The Clinton "charity" is not about financing any campaigns, at least not admittedly, and if we ever discover this "charity" is in fact about financing Hillary Clinton's campaign, it will be a serious criminal breach demanding of serious jail time.

This "Charity" is about personal enrichment -- and what the fuck does that have to do with campaign finance?

Posted by Ace at 03:43 PM Comments

Leak: Hastert Made Secret Payments to Pay Off Male Victim of Sexual Abuse

—Ace

I was asked yesterday what I thought Denny Hastert's big secret was.

I said, "Diddling a boy during his wrestling coach days."

Ding ding ding ding, says the LA Times.

Indicted former House Speaker Dennis Hastert was paying an individual from his past to conceal sexual misconduct, two federal law enforcement officials said Friday.

One of the officials, who would not speak publicly about the federal charges in Chicago, said "Individual A," as the person is described in Thursday's federal indictment, was a man and that the alleged misconduct was unrelated to Hastert’s tenure in Congress. The actions date to Hastert’s time as a Yorkville, Ill., high school wrestling coach and teacher, the official said.

"It goes back a long way, back to then," the source said. "It has nothing to do with public corruption or a corruption scandal. Or to his time in office." Thursday's indictment described the misconduct "against Individual A" as having "occurred years earlier."

Flashback to Hastert's fall from power: It was over an alleged cover up of Rep. Mark Foley's flirtation with a (male) Congressional page.

He stepped down after Republicans lost the House majority in the 2006 midterm elections. Those elections took place in the middle of an investigation into the GOP leadership’s handling of allegations that a Republican Florida congressman, Mark Foley, had engaged in inappropriate explicit communications with House pages, who were of high school age.
Posted by Ace at 02:50 PM Comments

Economy Contracted by 0.75% In the First Quarter

—Ace

This must be due to the lingering effects of the Bush economy, now six and a half years in the past.

No wait, this must be due to the 2013 Republican Government Shutdown.

May 29, 2015 - BEA Reveals that 1st Quarter 2015 GDP Shrank at -0.75%:

In their second estimate of the US GDP for the first quarter of 2015, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reported that the economy was contracting at a -0.75% annualized rate, down a full percent from the +0.25% estimated last month, and down sharply (-2.97%) from the +2.22% growth rate recorded for the prior quarter. And according to the "real final sales of domestic product" (BEA's very own "bottom line" for the economy), the economy shrank at more than a percent (-1.08%) during the quarter, down -3.40% from last quarter's +2.32%.

A look at the details provides little comfort....

The markets fell on the news, as well as some other bad economic news:

OTHER BAD DATA: Investors also had two other disappointing pieces of economic news to work through. A Chicago manufacturing survey fell to a reading of 46.2, well below the reading of 53 that economists were hoping for. Also a report on consumer sentiment for May fell to a six-month low.

This sounds like a perfect time for Obama to Pivot to Foreign Policy or whatever.

One more negative quarter and we're officially in recession.

Added [JohnE.]:


Posted by Ace at 01:01 PM Comments

Open Thread

—rdbrewer


Thomas Moran, "Sunrise Landscape" (1897)

Posted by rdbrewer at 09:42 AM Comments

Friday Morning Phoning It In

—BenK

Sorry, busy this morning.

Continue reading


Posted by BenK at 09:06 AM Comments

Morning Thread (5-29-2015)

—Andy

Late start this morning. I blame the central time zone.

Posted by Andy at 07:21 AM Comments

Overnight Open Thread (5-28-2015) - Slapdash But Legally an ONT Edition

—Maetenloch

Quote of the Day IV - Yesterday's Leftovers

Well with the help of commenters I was able to finally find it in Tuesday's Morning Jolt.

wartweet

fred-thompson-hunt

From an Interview with Gavin McInnes

TC: How do you find your obsession? Then, how do you turn it into a lucrative career?

GM: Just watch less TV, I don't know. It's hard to tell people how to live their lives, but just work hard. Find your compulsion and do it, become consumed by it. Charles Bukowski was all about this; he said he didn't even like writing, but he couldn't not write. It's like these kids with Asperger syndrome. They become obsessed with one thing at a certain age. They're looking at dryers and that's it. The only thing they care about for the rest of their life is dryers. They end up working at Maytag or whoever makes dryers because they know everything about them and they love their job. I don't think it matters what your obsession is and it doesn't have to be an Asperger's level of obsession, but if there's enthusiasm, it will work out. Look at Nick Weidenfeld; he took over Comedy Central's Adult Swim because he went to interview the head of it, Mike Lazzo, and Lazzo could sense his enthusiasm. Nick had no experience with television or the entertainment industry, but he got the job because he was obsessed with it and he did well at it, too. Opportunities just come when you blindly tumble through life with your eyes open.

TC: So recklessly and passionately pursue your gut instincts and impulses.

GM: Yeah, and don't complain. I don't have any sympathy for complainers in the Western world in 2012. All this shit about the middle class. "they have no jobs," "they can't pay their bills." I have been creating my own jobs out of thin air for twenty years and I was providing shit to people for free. When I couldn't do that I was planting trees, or teaching English, or traveling the world and staying in squats.

TC: The appetite grows while eating.

GM: Exactly, "If you want something done, ask a busy person." If I email Jimmy Kimmel and ask him a question, there's an answer a few minutes later. Then you ask someone who is unemployed and five days later they say "Oh, sorry for the delay, man, I was very sick."

And here is Gavin in rare form live trolling/dropping truth bombs on Tamara Holder on Hannity:

Continue reading


Posted by Maetenloch at 11:18 PM Comments

Denny Hastert Indicted For... Withdrawing Money From His Bank

—Ace

As you may or may not know -- well, you almost certainly know it; I don't know why I'm low-balling you here -- it's illegal to "structure" withdrawals from a bank in order to evade the IRS $10,000 (?) threshold which triggers a reporting requirement.

Well, Denny Hastert did that, feds claim. He is indicted for Malicious Withdrawals of His Own Money.

Now, the reason he seems to have done this is to pay off an alleged "victim" of "prior bad acts" -- someone I guess who could expose him. Maybe a blackmailer, maybe not. So he took the money in sub-$10,000 withdrawals to avoid federal reporting and embarrassment about paying off a legitimate victim and/or blackmailer. (Sometimes it's hazy.)

Now, those "Prior bad acts" are not specified, and further, are not part of the charges against Hastert -- whatever those acts are, they are not the feds' concern.

However, they are indicting him for Withdrawing Money With Intent To Withdraw Money.

Someone on Twitter -- didn't see who -- noted that they wouldn't be crying for Hastert, as Hastert is a member of the political class who has conspired to make everything illegal, and how he's hoist upon his own petard.

I think it's about time we stopped merely complaining about this shit and started demanding the feds repeal this bullshit law and their many other we'll-get-you-on-something laws.

Open Thread.

Posted by Ace at 06:23 PM Comments

DC Metro Suspends All Political Issue Ads, Rather than Run Pam Geller's Mohammad Ad

—Ace

They have to be viewpoint-neutral in decision-making. They can't just not run her ad because they don't like it. So, they've decided to "neutrally" ban all issue ads.

Question: How on earth is this "neutral"? Philadelphia did the exact same thing. The decision to accept issue ads at all is Not a neutral one when they accept issue ads so long as no one wants to run an anti-Sharia ad.

This doesn't even have the superficial look of a "viewpoint-neutral" decision. They have decided against issue ads, all of them, based on their disagreement with the viewpoint of Pam Geller's ad.

She should re-sue, and force them to accept issue ads again, including hers -- or else at least they should be forced to demonstrate that they were already planning on rejecting all issue ads independent of Geller's offer.

If this decision was made due to Geller's proposed ad-buy, then the decision is not viewpoint-neutral.

As Allah points out, at least the DC Metro is admitting why they're not running the ad.


I just love how immigration-without-assimilation is transforming America.

It's becoming such a better place, don't you think?

Posted by Ace at 05:18 PM Comments

Biased, Politically-Ambitious Baltimore State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby Favorited Tweets Calling the Cops She's Prosecuting "Thugs;"
Claims her Twitter Account Was Hacked By People Who Just Wanted to Favorite Tweets

—Ace

#Hacked.

By the way, there are a bunch of headlines I have to do so I'm going to start banging out very thin link-posts like this. Only way I can catch up.

Posted by Ace at 04:16 PM Comments

Senator Bernie Sanders, Democrat/Socialist Candidate For President: All Men Dream Of Tying Up and Sexually Abusing Women, And All Women Fantasize of Being Raped By Three Men

—Ace

Oh, yes.

MRC dug up Sanders' 1972 essay, "Men-and-Women." Why the headline has weird punctuation, you'd have to ask this old chicken-necked pervert.

Anyway, this fruity weirdo has some problematic notions of male/female sexuality. MRC quotes him:

"A man goes home and masturbates his typical fantasy," wrote Sanders. "A woman on her knees. A woman tied up. A woman abused."

Sanders didn't specify as to how he had gained such a deep understanding of the male psyche.

In terms of his understanding of female sexual fantasies, Sanders provided similar insight.

"A woman enjoys intercourse with her man--as she fantasizes about being raped by 3 men simultaneously."

Charles C.W. Cooke says that we should not unduly persecute Bernie Sanders for his sexual heresies, so you have some idea of the perverted antiques roadshow Cooke has going on in his bedroom.

You know how it is with British men. The bizzare seeds planted in boarding school sprout wicked fruit throughout their lives.

Cooke is arguing for what he conceives of as free speech absolutism -- one does not demagogue speech to whip up feeding frenzies of angry lynch mobbers about something merely said.

I agree with this, naturally, except that I don't. As a tactical matter, there is no way to get the left to stop with its incessant Censorship Crusades except to visit equal pain upon them.

The greatest ethical precept in the world is the do-unto-others-test, which I usually think of as the shoe on the other foot test.

One can discover a lot of moral and ethical rules -- and separate out actual rules of good behavior from self-serving rationalizations designed to punish one's enemies -- by always asking, "Would I support this rule if I were forced to live under it?"

The trouble is, of course, the left is almost never asked to wear the shoe on their own foot.

They think censorship, Speechcraft Trials, and mob justice for Thought Heretics is just awesome.

And why shouldn't they?

These things are almost never visited upon they themselves-- they have only the upside of a dark, censorious, paranoid regime. Almost all of the downside falls upon their enemies-- just where they'd want it.

So the question is, and this is where I depart from Cooke, how best to secure an open, vibrant and, I'll say it, sophisticated public culture?

I disagree that this will arise from treating the left as we would wish to be treated. The left is unscrupulous, nasty, and often borderline insane, and will take the benefit of that bargain every time.

Punish my enemies with Speechcraft Trials while my enemies scrupulously refrain from doing the same to me? Yes, please!

No, the right way to bring about a more open, permissive, and adult tone in civic culture is to treat the left according to its own obscene rules, while always making it clear: We are prepared to abandon these darkly stupid rules you've constructed the minute you agree to do the same, Genius.

You may wonder why I am still so opposed to demagoging ordinary civilians: Well, because they're ordinary civilians. Bernie Sanders is not an ordinary civiilian, he is a politician, and a well-compensated and donor-cash-rich avatar for Social Justice. He also has a Big Microphone, unlike your average everyday citizen caught up in a Social Justice Lyniching.

As I've said before -- I support political tactics, such as whipping up public opinion against someone, in actual political circumstances, with respect to actual political actors (including the undisclosed lobbyists of the media) -- but not in everyday life.

smelltheglove==.jpg
from Bernie Sanders' collection of classic 8-tracks


People don't like the Tit For Tat regime because it sounds simple-minded, punitive, and awful. Well, it is these things.

It is also, as Steven den Beste persuasively argued, very effective for bringing about a more ethical environment. Meaning that while it may be crude in method, it is enlightened in outcome.

After introducing the well-known Prisoner's Dilemma game, den Beste observes:

There's been a lot of analysis of this, and it turns out that honesty isn't the best policy. One guy decided to run a computer tournament; people were permitted to create algorithms in a synthetic language which would have the ability to keep track of previous exchanges and make a decision on each new exchange whether to be honest or to cheat. He challenged them to see who could come up with the one which did the best in a long series of matches against various opponents. It turned out that the best anyone could find, and the best anyone has ever found, was known as "Tit-for-tat".

On the first round, it plays fair. On each successive round, it does to the other guy what he did the last time.

When Tit-for-tat plays against itself, it plays fair for the entire game and maximizes output. When it plays against anyone who tosses in some cheating, it punishes it by cheating back and reduces the other guys unfair winnings.

No-one has ever found a way of defeating it.

Now let's analyze two different and even more simplistic approaches; we'll call them "saint" and "sinner". The saint plays fair every single round, irrespective of what the other guy does. The sinner always cheats.

When a saint plays against another saint, or against tit-for-tat, the result is optimum but more important is that everyone gets the same result. When a sinner plays against another sinner, or against tit-for-tat, everyone cheats and the result is still even, though less than optimal.

But when a sinner plays against a saint, the sinner wins and the saint loses.

Which brings me back to the point of all this: Is there anything I would rule out in war? Nothing I'd care to admit to my enemies, because ruling out anything is a "saint" tactic. The Tit-for-tat tactic is to be prepared to do anything, but not to do so spontaneously. In other words, if the other guy threatens to use poison gas, you make sure you have some of your own and let him know that you'll retaliate with it. That means that he has nothing to win by using it, and he won't. (A war is a sequence game and not a single transaction because each day is a new exchange. If you gassed my guys yesterday, I can gas yours today.)

I think it's pretty stupid to demagogue people over statements like this, honestly. I know where Sanders go this from: He got it from Nancy Friday's My Secret Garden, supposedly a book containing all of women's private fantasies (she says she surveyed women), and rape was indeed a major part of the female sexual imagination, she was surprised to find. (Psychologically, it has been explained to me that women feel guilty about sex, but still enjoy sex; the fantasy of being under someone else's sexual control allows the woman, in fantasy, to enjoy sex, because she's not making any of the decisions that she would otherwise feel guilty about.)

I don't know if I buy any of that; I'm just remarking that this isn't the first time I've heard this.

I do know that if I wrote that paragraph not in response to Bernie Sanders, there's a pretty good chance that the left would demagogue me and Speechcraft Trial me as a Thought Rapist.

And that's why we must do the same to Bernie Sanders, and make him defend these So Problematic You Guys words.

The left has drawn us all into its insecure, neurotic, grasping, wanting, stupid, paranoid darkness. They have effectively criminalized it to say anything other than "Women are just terrific" and "everything is awesome!"

They are broken, warped people inflicting their psychic tumult on the rest of society.

I would like to get to place where we have conversations which are no longer mediated by the mentally unstable and undermedicated.

But to do that, we have to teach these wretched monsters the evils of their own ways. And to do that, we need to play tit ofr tat.


Posted by Ace at 03:19 PM Comments

"This Sculpture Just Screamed 'Mansplaining'!"

—Ace

Tell me again you're serious people, and not vapid little children in need of instruction.


That tweet went viral over Memorial Day weekend. It all started when Ash Hernandez saw the statue on her way to take a teacher's certification test. She was so outraged that she ran back to her car to get her phone to snap a picture.

"The sculpture just screamed mansplaining," Hernandez told Women in the World, a New York Times affiliate.

Hernandez sent the picture to her friend Cathy de la Cruz, who tweeted it out. The tweet went viral, prompting other Twitter users to post photos of statues they found sexist.

Look, I have bad news for everyone: The world's about to be destroyed. How, I'm not sure. But destroyed it shall be.

Now what I propose is the building of three Space Arks.

The second arc, Ark B, is the one I really want to talk about. On this Ark, we'll put all the most important people in our society: The radfems, the genderf*cks, the censors, the quivering priestesses of false rape allegations, the trans-women seeking abortions, Matt Bai.

We'll send this Space Ark first because it's imperative that whatever planet the rest of us settle on be certified, from the start, to be gender-sensitive and trans-friendly.

What do you guys think of my plan?!?!

Posted by Ace at 02:21 PM Comments

Matt Bai: Unlike in 2012, What America Really Needs Now is a Distant, Ultra-Wealthy Elite With a Sense of Noblesse Oblige

—Ace

Charles Cooke discovers, get this, Matt Bai making a case for Hillary Clinton quite opposite to his former rhetoric about Mitt Romney.

Bai, quoted by Cooke, is responding to Bernie Sanders' (mild) attacks on Hillary Clinton as "not like us."

His headline?

Hillary Clinton's not like the rest of us? Good!


....

Senator Sanders made this comment while sitting in what CNBC described as a “bistro near the Capitol,” which doesn’t exactly sound like Applebee's, but you get the point: Clinton is out of touch with regular Americans because she doesn't buy used cars or stockpile CVS coupons or save up for Disneyland like the rest of us do. To which I would only ask: why on God’s earth would we want a president like us? . . .

If you're asking me to choose between the self-made man or woman with resentments and identity issues, on one hand, and some arrogant oligarch who serves no financial master and is compelled to seek office mostly by some patronizing sense of altruism on the other (Michael Bloomberg, New York’s former mayor, comes to mind), then I'll take out-of-touch every time, and so should you.

Well gee that's awfully funny because the American people could have elected such a man in 2012 but the Matt Bais of the world screamed about Car Elevators.

Posted by Ace at 12:59 PM Comments

Open Thread

—rdbrewer


Gioachimo Galbusera (Gioachino), "Landscape in Autumn Forest" (n.d.)

Posted by rdbrewer at 10:31 AM Comments

Morning Thread (5/28/2015)

—Andy

"I don' know nuthin' 'bout birthin' no babies." ~ Hillary Clinton, later today. Probably.

Posted by Andy at 06:20 AM Comments

Overnight Open Thread (5-27-2015)

—Maetenloch

Thanks to a sinus infection that's been grinding me down please accept this stripped-down even pithier ONT.

Quote of the Day I

Oh and I agree about the superheroics to a certain extent but I think the real issue didn't start with Stan Lee as much as it did the people after him. Yeah, he only hired fellow political travelers but I doubt even he realized how far they would go. I doubt he thought they would quit writing to kids either and write comics solely to aging leftists and weird grad-school sex-scenester kids (LGBTABCEFG) to slowly diminishing returns propped up only by films and cartoons for children. In fact, if anything, that's the biggest knock on what superheroes have become. It's adults stealing the dreams of children to prop up their own sad fantasies. Sort of a good picture of the current Left in the world. Globalized and living off the young for the privilege of the few. Who'd a guessed there was so much in comics

-- Greg Nielsen in an email to Mark Steyn

Quote of the Day II

There's a certain kind of behavior in the Arab world that, to me, resembles the way young men behave when there is no significant influence from women in their lives.

-- PJ O'Rourke

Quote of the Day III

One of the scariest aspects of our times is how seldom either people or policies are judged by their track record.

-- Thomas Sowell

Let's All Congratulate Marie Harf on Her Recent Promotion

She's now senior advisor for strategic communications to Secretary of State John Kerry and will play a key role in developing communication strategies for our negotiations with Iran over how they'll keep their nuclear weapons program. It's nice to see that all her hard work, consistent stylishness, and peppy can-do attitude was finally recognized by the Pan-Hellenic Council State Department.

According to unnamed sources Harf is already bursting with ideas to make this year's negotiations the most AWESOMEST EVER! Now don't get too excited but rumors are that Lady Gaga(!) has already been booked and that Aerosmith(!!) may make an appearance during the karaoke cruise!!!

We're in the best of hands.

Hrf234Marie

The Deep Thoughts of John Kerry

The Vainglorious Mr. Kerry

Investor's Business Daily: An Obama Crime Wave Spreads Across America

State-run Chinese Newspaper: US-China war 'inevitable' unless Washington drops demands over South China Sea

Times of London: Saudi Arabia Calling in Its Chits to Get Pakistani Nuclear Weapons

FDA Approves First Drug to Treat Radiation Sickness After a Nuclear Incident

So we have that going for us.

But hey here's some Kate Upton to cheer you right up!

Kate Upton's Car Got Towed so She Chugs a Bud Out of a Paper Bag, Makes Calls

Apparently as part of a movie scene. In real life models just grab the first non-serial killery-but-has-a-401K guy they see and ask to borrow his car for a while and continue on their merry way.

katecarbeer

Continue reading


Posted by Maetenloch at 10:54 PM Comments

Freddie Gray Prosecutor Marilyn Mosby (nee James) Was On Judge Judy?

—Ace

Of course.


For the Haters of Me: It's all too real.

Posted by Ace at 08:27 PM Comments

France: "No" To Any Iran Deal, Unless We Have Full Access to All Nuke Sites, Including the Military Ones Where, Duh, Nuclear Development Will Actually Take Place

—Ace

Last week, Supreme Shaman Khamenei declared that not only would he not permit Iran's military sites to be inspected for violations, but that he would not even permit its scientists to be interviewed about the work they were doing.

"The impudent and brazen enemy expects that we allow them talk to our scientists and researchers about a fundamental local achievement but no such permission will be allowed," Khamenei told military commanders in Tehran Wednesday, in remarks broadcast on state TV. "No inspection of any military site or interview with nuclear scientists will be allowed."

Khamenei said interviewing Iranian nuclear scientists would be an affront to Iran's dignity.

"I will not allow foreigners to interview -- which is tantamount to interrogation -- the prominent beloved scientists and sons of this nation," he said.

Of course, Obama is desperate to give Iran the bomb. England is basically an ISIS outpost with some past connection to the Beatles.

But France, along with Germany, continues to have a more adult view of Iran.

"France will not accept (a deal) if it is not clear that inspections can be done at all Iranian installations, including military sites," Laurent Fabius told lawmakers .

...

"'Yes’' to an agreement, but not to an agreement that will enable Iran to have the atomic bomb. That is the position of France which is independent and peaceful."

We're once again forced to witness the spectacle of a leftwing American President being contradicted by an avowedly socialist, but less leftwing, French administration.

Has Obama Lost the Cher Vote?


Posted by Ace at 06:52 PM Comments

Jen Psaki: Obama's Strategy In Iraq, Which Is In All Ways Perfect, May Need to be Adjusted

—Ace

The White House had previously sworn on the Bible that their strategy was perfect and flawless.

Now they continue to make that same point -- but Jen Psaki acknowledges we may have to "adjust" the perfect plan.

The White House has altered its language in defending their strategy against the Islamic State, finally admitting that they must "adapt" its strategy.

Jen Psaki, White House communications director, dismissed Sec. Ash Carter's comment that Iraqi soldiers "showed no will to fight," directly contradicting the vice president’s words. The allegation undermines the White House strategy to equip and train Iraqi soldiers so that U.S. involvement can remain minimal.

"They've taken on this fight; they're continuing to, but we need to adapt our strategy too and adapt to the type of equipment that we’re providing as time goes on and as ISIS adapts," Psaki said Wednesday morning on CNN.

In total, Psaki mentioned "adapting" six times in a four-minute interview, despite downplaying losses by claiming the fight against IS will have "good days and bad days."

When do we have the good ones? Video of the hapless babbling fool Jen Psaki at the link.

In addition, you will be happy to know that the Obama White House is taking the fall of Ramadi with an increased sense of urgency.

Previously, the White House had called the sacking of the capital of the Anbar Province a "tactical setback."

Today, it acknowledges that the setback was more serious than that.

Why, they even go so far as to call it, using a passive-voice-style double-negative construction, a "not unsubstantial setback."

"I think there are a variety of contributors to what happened in Ramadi," press secretary Josh Earnest said when asked about Defense Secretary Ashton Carter’s contention that the Iraqi army showed no "will to fight" and essentially ran from Ramadi. "The first is that there -- the Iraqi security forces, who were fighting in Ramadi, and have been fighting in Ramadi for a year and a half, didn’t have the benefit of the training of the United States and our coalition partners. There were clearly, as the Iraqis have indicated, some military command and planning problems that occurred. And we saw a pretty effective tactic used by ISIL. And all of that led to a not unsubstantial setback in Ramadi."

Obama is a not uncatastrophic president.

Let's talk about this "lack of a will to fight" comment.

While there may be merit to it -- I'll need more than the Obama Administration's spin of events before saying -- it has to be noted that the Obama Team's first, best, and only response to any failure is to claim that it's someone else's fault.

The only thing this Administration actually does is shift blame.

Now, we could talk about why American planes are only making thirteen airstrikes a day in Iraq and Syria. (For comparison, we made 800 per day in Operation Iraqi Freedom, and more than 1300 per day in Desert Storm.)

We could ask, if the US is only bringing air power to this fight, why we are bringing so damned little of it-- almost as if Obama wants to be seen as if he's "trying something," but in fact is set upon losing the war (as usual).

Such talk would bother Obama, who has maintained, since he came into office, that he has not made a single mistake, except for failing sometimes to communicate how awesome his decisions and policies are. (No really -- the press was always asking Bush if he made mistakes. They've only asked Obama a couple of times, and Obama always says no, not one mistake, but he allows his communications may be better.)

So the Iraq forces just lost a major town, and the US forces were doing, basically, doodly-squat while it happened.

So of course Team Obama must go into overdrive insulting the Iraqis.

Andrew McLean writes:

Toxic Nation: After Ramadi, USA Shows Itself to be the Worst Kind of Friend

These remarks constitute the latest evolution of administration talking points on our failing campaign against the Islamic State. Shortly before Ramadi fell, U.S. officials were complaining to the press that its coverage of the war was biased against American efforts. In particular, the officials wanted television news to stop recycling old B-roll footage of IS from 2014, showing the fighters moving in mass formations of vehicles. The argument was that because our bombing campaign was so successful, IS could not and did not operate "in broad daylight" like that anymore.

The only wars this administration cares about are publicity wars.

....

With Carter's questioning of the courage of the Iraqi forces, the administration’s spin has evolved from "everything is going great," to "this is not a big deal," to "it's not our fault--it's those cowardly Iraqis who can't get it done."

...

We refuse to share any risk with our Iraqi partners, and then call them cowards in public when they fail. As a strategic matter, who will want to fight alongside us in the future after a display as pathetic as this?

....

[I]t is a strange sort of strategy that is based on an expectation that, "over time," we will have any friends left, if our leaders continue to find it politically expedient to belittle allies after sending them out to die alone. The only thing being degraded in the campaign against the Islamic State is American prestige.

Everything is Awesome Update: The Obama Administration Theme, suggested by Bob's House of Flannel Shirts.

Continue reading


Posted by Ace at 04:56 PM Comments

Hillary Clinton's Doing Her Vile Fake Southern Accent Again

—Ace

She's just awful in every way imaginable, and in several more you couldn't even think of.

"She needs to stop doing that risible fake accent," emails Madonna.

Compare to her her "I don' feel no ways tired, I come too faaahr" Negro accent from 2007.

Corrected: I put up a pic of what I thought was Hillary eating a fish. It wasn't Hillary; it was German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

But I think this is a good replacement:


Continue reading


Posted by Ace at 03:33 PM Comments

Gallup: American Support for Liberal Social Positions at Historic Highs; "Social Liberals" Equal "Social Conservatives" For First Time in Poll's History

—Ace

This only goes back to 1999, but this is the first time that social liberals and social conservatives are at parity, per Gallup's polling. The two groups are now both at 31%.

On specific issues, there is a shift in favor of the left, with many socially-left positions now receiving historic levels of support.

A big surge in support for gay relationships, which you might have guessed, as well as for sexual relationships before marriage and divorce as well.

Support for abortion has ticked up, but only a bit.

Rush was talking about this, saying that the whole point of the poll was to demoralize social conservatives, or get the Establishment Republicans to abandon the socially conservative wing. (Not a hard sell for Establishment Republicans, in any case.)

I don't buy that. The questions have been asked since 1999 and 2001, respectively. I don't think someone could claim that Gallup only asked the question about gay marriage in 2004 in order to demoralize liberals, back when more were against homosexuality.

I do think this represents an actual change. A permanent one? Who knows. What's permanent in the world?

Posted by Ace at 02:48 PM Comments

Anonymous Writer Asks NYT's "Ethicist" Columnist: A Rape Occurred In a Political Campaign I Was Involved With, and the Higher Ups Covered It Up; What Should I Do?

—Ace

Via Twitchy.

My first job out of college was at a major political campaign. Late in the year, an intern told me she had been raped by one of my colleagues and that campaign higher-ups made the problem go away. I'm not sure what that means, but the police weren’t involved, nothing made the news, all the people involved kept their jobs. To my knowledge, this young woman told me and one other colleague. I kept the secret to myself for the last seven years until the other night. I let slip to a journalist friend the very basics of what happened, and now I’m being asked for contacts who can confirm that it happened.

...

The candidate I worked for is running again. I still support the candidate, and I do not want the opponent in office. On the other hand, I am aghast that the organization would cover up such a heinous crime.

Hmmm...

You know, not for nothin', but Hillary Clinton was still running for president 7 years ago, wasn't she?

Posted by Ace at 12:28 PM Comments

OMG So Adorbz

—Ace

So this is pretty adorable.

Baby bears -- that's adorable right there -- are play-boxing with each other, but they're kinda clumsy and ineffectual because they're babies.

This is so cute it turned me full-on gloryhole gay.

Continue reading


Posted by Ace at 12:10 PM Comments

Open Thread

—rdbrewer


Peder Mørk Mønsted, "A Cottage Garden with Chickens" (1919)

Posted by rdbrewer at 10:54 AM Comments

Supreme Court to Consider Whether the Constitution Requires 'One Person, One Vote' or 'One Voter, One Vote'

—Gabriel Malor

Yesterday, the Supreme Court agreed to resolve a redistricting question that has been simmering for over fifty years: does the equal protection clause require that state voter districts be apportioned according to the number of residents or the number of eligible voters? States have, generally, been allowed to decide for themselves whether to use the total state population or some more restrictive population—say, one that excludes temporary residents and aliens—when drawing districts.

But this question has profound implications for states with large populations of residents who are ineligible to vote like, for example, the state of Texas, where this case originates. Counting residents ineligible to vote for the purposes of apportioning districts tends to give more weight to votes in districts with large numbers of such residents. The argument in this case is that this inequality of voting power violates the equal protection clause. It would be an unusual constitutional standard that allowed votes in some states to be diluted at the whim of the state legislature or (perhaps worse) independent redistricting commissions.

This quickly becomes a political question. Residents not eligible to vote—like aliens and felons in many states—just happen to be concentrated in urban districts, which also tend to be Democratic districts. Shifting voting power from such urban minority districts to rural, generally older white districts will launch a hundred screechy tirades on the internet, but this lawsuit finds support in decades of progressive jurisprudence. The case law implementing the Voting Rights Act has required using population of eligible voters, not population of residents, as the baseline when drawing minority districts. The petitioners in this case want the Supreme Court to find the same principle is required by the equal protection clause.

One thing that the Supreme Court justices will no doubt want to know: how accurate is the states' count of eligible voters? The census gives a pretty good idea of how many residents live in a particular area, but it was not designed to give a precise count of eligible voters. If the high court decides that the equal protection clause requires 'one voter, one vote' districting, how accurate must the count of eligible voters be? Also, this is a state redistricting case, but it is not hard to see how the principle could be extended to congressional redistricting, which would cause some big changes in the House for states like Texas, Florida, New Mexico, Arizona, and (gulp) California.

Posted by Gabriel Malor at 09:30 AM Comments

Morning Thread (5-27-2015)

—Andy

According to leading Climate Scientists™, it apparently never even rained in Texas until last weekend.

Stevie Ray Vaughan's "Texas Flood" (cover of a 1958 original, FYI) now seems eerily prescient.

Posted by Andy at 06:09 AM Comments

Overnight Open Thread (5-26-2015)

—Maetenloch

Quote of the Day I - A Fella Could Have a Pretty Good Weekend in Vegas With All This Stuff Edition

An upcoming workshop scheduled to take place at the University of Wisconsin-Madison aims to teach campus radicals and socialists how to manipulate campus resources to advance their agenda. One of the group's overall goals, according to their website, is to "reveal and challenge the North American university as a site working at the junction of settler-colonialism, neoliberal capitalism, hetero-patriarchy, white supremacy and other systems of domination and exploitation." The event includes sessions investigating what it means to be a thief, how to construct political narratives, and how to destabilise hegemonic spatial representations.
Being expected to pay your bills as agreed - say, those misspent student loans - is, we learn, a "means of oppression." Because destabilising hegemonic spatial representations is something that someone else should be forced to pay for.

-- David Thompson

Quote of the Day II

"The line between free speech and X" is often the rhetorical equivalent to "the line between vegetables and rutabagas": the author doesn't have a coherent argument that rutabagas aren't vegetables, but doesn't like rutabagas and thinks you shouldn't either.

-- Popehat

Quote of the Day III

norsebyswtweet

Robert Tracinski: Why is the Angry Left So Angry?

In short: immanentizing the eschaton.

For the secular leftist, the end state is social and necessarily political. It is all about getting everybody else on board and herding them into his imagined utopia. There are so many "problematic" aspects of life that need to be reengineered, so many vast social systems that need to be overthrown and replaced. But the rest of us are all screwing it up, all the time, through our greed, our denial, our apathy, our refusal to listen to him banging on about his tired socialist ideology.

For the Christian, the ideal end state is safely in the next world and therefore is never in doubt. For the individualist, it's in his own life, and it's mostly under his direct control. For the leftist, however, it is all outside his control. It requires other people, a lot of other people, and those SOBs usually refuse to cooperate. Talk about rage-inducing.

If the whole focus of your life is on getting everybody else to agree with you on every detail of your politics and adopt your plans for a perfect society, then you're setting yourself up to be at war with most of the human race most of the time.

Which means an awful lot for the Angry Left to get angry about.

Continue reading


Posted by Maetenloch at 10:44 PM Comments

Rubio: Christianity Is On the Edge of Being Declared a Hate Crime

—Ace

Depressing, dark truth for you.

Posted by Ace at 09:04 PM Comments

Hollywood Hates You and Spits On All Of Your Values

—Ace

The proof: This remake.

Continue reading


Posted by Ace at 07:28 PM Comments

Bad News: Muslim Cleric Declares Fatwa on Wanking Off; Says That Those Who Masturbate Will Have "Pregnant Hands" In the Afterlife

—Ace

You don't want to be punished with a hand-baby.

A Muslim televangelist has advised male followers to stop masturbating -- because it will leave their hands pregnant in the afterlife.

Turkish preacher Mücahid Cihad Han told viewers that masturbation was forbidden in Islam.

"One hadith states that those who have sexual intercourse with their hands will find their hands pregnant in the afterlife, complaining against them to God over its rights,' he said during his program on private television station 2000 TV, according to The Hurriyet Daily News.

Here are some pictures of the crusading cleric.


Well sure I can see why this guy can pontificate against masturbation. I mean, look at him. He looks like he's waist-deep in p***y.

Bro, do you even lift?

And now, for rebuttal: A nervous goat.

goatbuttal.jpg
"Everything that just guy said is bullshit!"

Posted by Ace at 06:34 PM Comments

Good News: Yesterday, Obama Announced The End of War In Afghanistan
Not So Good News: The Taliban Is Still Killing American Soldiers in Afghanistan

—Ace

No more war, Obama told us.

Actually, this is an example of a politician endlessly re-declaring the same thing to get more free media out of it. Obama declared the end of War in Afghanistan last December.

The enemy, Jim Geraghty notes, was unimpressed.

A 22-year-old member of the US Army from Whitinsville was killed in Afghanistan when an Afghan soldier attacked his American allies earlier this week.

John M. Dawson, an Army specialist, died in Jalalabad from wounds suffered when he was hit by small arms fire while on an escort mission, the Defense Department said in a statement.

That story is from April 10, 2015. Wow, that's practically as ancient history as World War II.

Mission Accomplished?

Robert Tracynski notes the Passive Voice President says these wars "came to an end" -- certainly not that America won these wars.

There are good men who gave their lives, or left behind an arm or a leg, to keep Islamic terrorists from establishing a home base in Iraq. Having achieved that victory, they then had to watch as it was all thrown away....

[W]hatever this administration's role, it is disturbing to see the president touting the peace that we are supposedly enjoying after the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have "come to an end." That’s an appropriately passive expression, since President Obama can't say that we’ve won those wars, only that they have "come to an end"--and only for us. I should also add: and only for now.

I hate this asshole.

Posted by Ace at 05:27 PM Comments

Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals Upholds Injunction Against Obama's Executive Amnesty, Blocking Enforcement of the Amnesty Until a Full Trial on the Merits

—Ace

A lower court had issued an injunction staying enforcement of the amnesty. The Obama Administration appealed that injunction, seeking to go ahead with the amnesty until/unless a full hearing confirmed the amnesty as unconstitutional.

The Obama Administration's efforts resulted in, get this, failure.

A federal appeals court upheld an injunction against President Obama's new deportation in a ruling Tuesday that marks the second major legal setback for an administration that had insisted its actions were legal.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ruled in favor of Texas, which had sued to stop the amnesty, on all key points, finding that Mr. Obama’s amnesty likely broke the law governing how big policies are to be written.

"The public interest favors maintenance of the injunction," the judges wrote in the majority opinion.

...

The full amnesty had been scheduled to begin last week, while an earlier part had been slated to accept applications on Feb. 18....

This is not a final ruling on the merits, but it is reason for optimism.

Here's hoping.

Posted by Ace at 03:31 PM Comments

Hillary Clinton, The Candidate Who Will Sell You Cheap Crap

—Ace

The New York Times notes that the Hillary Clinton "keepsake" shop is open, serving as yet another progressive tax on stupidity.

I guess maybe I approve of that. Frankly, we should have more progressive taxes on stupidity. It's been subsidized way too long.

So you can buy a t-shirt that looks like one of Hillary's sexless, charmless, formless pantsuits. No really -- she calls it "The Everyday Pantsuit Tee." She throws a "The" in front of it because that's what lame outlets do, they say they're selling you "The Cable-Knit Sweater" or "The Six Dollar Burger."

everydaypantsuit.jpg

What Team Hillary Wants It To Say: I'm fun, fashion-forward, and not without a sense of whimsy

What It Actually Says: I work the tapioca line at the Group Home

Here's the "Stitch by Stich Throw Pillow."

oldladypillow.jpg

What Team Hillary Wants It To Say: A little subversive wit delivered with old-world charm

What It Actually Says: Old ladies collect throw pillows like junkies collect pill bottles

That's fifty bucks, by the way.

For $25, I'll sell you a pillow that says "There's SomethIng Deeply, Badly Wrong With Me."

This t-shirt is called "The Supporter." I think it's deliberate that "The Supporter" is a male, or sort of male, at least. I mean, he'd be on that side of the spectrum if you graphed it.

You know -- men are the supporters, #Women are the #ActionHeroes. #Progress.

vnecksupporter.jpg

What Team Hillary Wants It To Say: Mom, Dad, I'd like to talk to you about Hillary Clinton

What It Actually Says: Mom, Dad -- I'd like to talk to you about what happened to me at summer camp

Posted by Ace at 02:27 PM Comments

Another Much-Hyped Rape Claim Proves False

—Ace

Or at least there is insufficient evidence to bring charges.

What is more dangerous -- "Rape culture," or "rape culture" culture? That is, the witch-hunting, lunatic sexual paranoia about the existence of a so-called "rape culture"?

The victims of "rape culture" culture are starting to pile up.

A high-profile LAPD raid on Venice High School that made international headlines after 15 male students were arrested on charges of sexual assault has resulted in prosecutors' decision not to prosecute anyone in the case.

The large number of students arrested in mid-March and the high number of law enforcement personnel that descended on the school’s campus and led students away in handcuffs drew widespread attention on the case. But now, over two months later, prosecutors with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office cited "insufficient evidence" as the reason that no charges would be pursued, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Teenaged girls are famously sober and reserved in their judgment.

Posted by Ace at 12:32 PM Comments



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This week's guest: Kevin Williamson

MP3 Download | Stream | Ask The Blog | Archives
Scott Walker On Verge of Signing Abortion Ban After 20 Weeks, No Exceptions for Rape or Incest
As Gabe argued simply, when I objected to the "harsh" nature of such measures: Who waits 20 weeks debating about an abortion, after a pregnancy due to a rape?
Shock: The State Department Itself Labeled Benghazi a "Terrorist" Attack Within Hours After It Ended
The three a.m. call came in, and Hillary was loaded, I presume. (Loaded with work, obviously. What else could I possibly have meant?)
David Harsanyi: Given That ISIS Would Not Have Arisen Had Saddam Hussein Still Been Killing People, No, the World Is Not Better Off Without Saddam Hussein
He makes a less contentious point, too: The absolute worst pair of decisions was to both invade and then bug-out early... Hillary Clinton is unique among all major political figures in having been wrong on both decisions
Senator Warren Made Easy Money Buying Houses and Flipping Them
Profiting on other people's desperation, while posing as a Hero of the Workin' Man. How perfectly... Democratic
Lab-Grown Burger Meat Could Be As Cheat As $12 Per Pound in a Year
Now that they've synthesized the protein, they need to synthesize the fat, which is where most of the flavor is

Ann Coulter: Ramos Can Stay, But Matt Lauer Has to Go
"I finally found a Mexican willing to do a job no American will do! I have an explosive book on the No. 1 issue in the country coming out next week, I've already written 10 New York Times best-sellers -- I'd be on a postage stamp if I were a liberal -- but can't get an interview on ABC, NBC or CBS." [rdbrewer]
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