June 28, 2017

New Project Veritas Video: Van Jones Admits Russia "A Big Nothingburger"

—Ace

They just published the video.

Continue reading


Posted by Ace at 12:54 PM Comments



Trump: Friend of Israel

—OregonMuse

I didn't care all that much for Nikki Haley when she was governor of mumblemumble Carolina, but she's been tearing it up ever since Trump appointed her as our ambassador to the U.N.

In the tradition of our best U.N. ambassadors — Daniel Patrick Moynihan and Jeane Kirkpatrick — Haley has been a powerful voice against U.N. hypocrisy. Most notably, she has denounced U.N. hypocrisy regarding Israel.

Read the whole piece at Powerline.

I would hazard a guess that Israel is very much thankful for Trump after 8 years of Obama's bullshit.

Posted by OregonMuse at 11:35 AM Comments



Mid-Morning Open Thread

—CBD

Babel Bruegel.jpg

The (Great) Tower Of Babel
Pieter Bruegel the Elder

[Hat Tip: Tim In Illinois]

And he painted another one!

Continue reading


Posted by CBD at 09:30 AM Comments

The Morning Report 6/28/17

—J.J. Sefton

dick.jpg

Good morning, kids. Midweek and a mixed bag of things today. First up, and as I had suspected all along, the Democrat-inspired terrorist attack that left Rep. Steve Scalise and several others gravely wounded has been nothing-to-see-here-move-along'd way too quickly. The Daily Caller is reporting that there is evidently a chain of communications between the terrorist and the office of Dick Durbin and that office is refusing to let reporters from that outlet have access to them. Considering the fact that the Left has essentially blamed the President and the victims for the act of a lone wolf, it's kind of puzzling (read: alarming) that these communications exist in the first place, let alone the refusal to release them. Couple all this with the FBI's (don't laugh) bizarre press announcement that the attack was spontaneous, random and had no specific target, despite mountains of evidence to the contrary, and the complete politicization of its leadership that is in open revolt against the President and his political allies, and you know something is terribly wrong here. Either I'm insane or there is something being covered up is truly explosive. And let's leave it at that. For now.

In other news, the GOP healthcare bill has been delayed and there are indications that the conservatives are hopefully making headway in adding an actual repeal component to the bill that has been touted as a repeal and replace. We shall see.

Bernie Sanders, the maple syrup commie with the Canarsie accent claims the FBI investigation into his and his wife's real estate swindle is a political witch hunt. Lastly, there is a very disturbing report for my last link. I apologize for linking it and yet I feel compelled. No one is covering it and it's a story that must be told. Because this is the real enemy that we are facing. Anyway, links from around the world, across the nation and up your street. Have a better one and remain blessed.

UPDATE:

First link to Durbin fixed.

Posted by J.J. Sefton at 07:00 AM Comments

Tuesday Overnight Open Thread (6/27/17) The Second Monday of The Week Edition

—Misanthropic Humanitarian

tuesday ont fold.jpg

(What rhymes with Valu-Rite?)


*****


Quotes of The Day


Quote I

One of the things the government can't do is run anything. The only things our government runs are the post office and the railroads, and both of them are bankrupt. Lee Iacocca


Quote II

There is joy in work. There is no happiness except in the realization that we have accomplished something. Henry Ford


Quote III

I think I've owned all the models of iPods so far. And these days between my iPod, iPhone and my personal laptop computer, I'm someone who is very, very grateful for all the ways to listen to music and completely switch off from people around me and listen to the music in detail, which is very hard to do if you're in a room with other people. Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull

Continue reading


Posted by Misanthropic Humanitarian at 10:08 PM Comments

This. Is CNN. The Most Trusted Name In News

—OregonMuse

Here are some things more trustworthy than CNN, stolen from Twitter #MoreTrustedThanCNN:

1. Anthony Weiner's babysitting service

2. Bill Clinton doing a sleep-over at a sorority house.

3. This guy:

snake oil.jpg

Continue reading


Posted by OregonMuse at 06:47 PM Comments

Colbert's Ratings Slip Back Behind Fallon's

—Ace

CNN's, MSNBC's, and Colbert's ratings all rely on the idea that there is a Great Impeachment a-coming, just around the bend.

But what happens when the Rubes start to suspect they're being taken for a ride?

According to The Wrap, "The Tonight Show's" Jimmy Fallon beat Colbert in ratings for the first time since Trump's inauguration in January. In total viewers, Fallon had 2.66 million to Colbert's 2.62 million. He also crushed Colbert in the coveted 18-49 demo, with a .68 rating to Colbert's .42. In total, Fallon had a 62 percent demo lead over Colbert.

Last week, Fallon saw his highest ratings in the 18-49 demo since the week of April 3-7. One explanation for Fallon's newfound success is that CBS didn't include Thursday and Friday's ratings for Colbert because the network aired reruns on those days.

Speaking of ratings: CNN decided to rebut the Project Veritas sting video in which a producer said CNN runs "mostly bullshit" Russia stories all day "for the ratings" by... citing their ratings.


Note the The Most Trusted Name in News also included a typo there ("it's" instead of "its"). They also cited a single fact -- not plural facts -- and then said "Those are the facts" instead of "That's the fact."

And speaking even more of ratings (this is the Age of Trump, after all), Megyn Kelly's ratings have fallen for the fourth straight week.

Megyn Kelly's Sunday night newsmagazine show's ratings dropped for a fourth consecutive week since debuting earlier this month on NBC, according to Nielsen Media Research.

The latest episode of "Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly" averaged 3.4 million viewers and an 0.4 rating in the key 18- to 49-year-old demographic that advertisers covet most.

..

Overall, Kelly's week 4 came third behind a repeat of CBS's "60 Minutes," which delivered 7.1 million viewers and an 0.7 demographic rating, and a repeat of ABC's "America's Funniest Home Videos," which brought in 3.9 million viewers and a 0.7 demographic rating.

Why? Well, she lost her old Fox audience, and the liberal audience that pretended to like her only liked her because she was making the liberal case against Trump on Fox.

She has no particular cache as yet another NBC flake making the liberal case against Trump on NBC, and liberals no longer feel the need to support this Victim of Trump.

Posted by Ace at 05:57 PM Comments

Another Scoop from Carter & Solomon: Andrew McCabe Under Investigation for Violations of the Hatch Act

—Ace

The charge seems a little ticky-tack, but Mueller is trying to get Flynn and Trump on ticky-tack crap, so if the rules forbid ticky-tack crap, then they forbid ticky-tack crap for everybody.

cting FBI Director Andrew McCabe is being investigated by the Office of U.S. Special Counsel for violating The Hatch Act that prohibits FBI agents from campaigning in partisan races.

The Office of U.S. Special Counsel, the government’s main whistleblower agency, is investigating whether FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe’s activities supporting his wife Jill’s Democratic campaign for Virginia state senate in 2015 violated the Hatch Act’s prohibition against FBI agents campaigning in partisan races.


The agency’s probe was prompted by a complaint in April from a former FBI agent who forwarded social media photos showing McCabe wearing a T-shirt supporting his wife’s campaign during a public event and then posting a photo on social media urging voters to join him in voting for his wife.


...

The Hatch Act prohibits FBI employees from engaging "in political activity in concert with a political party, a candidate for partisan political office, or a partisan political group."

It defines prohibited political activity as "any activity directed at the success or failure of a partisan group or candidate in a partisan election."

I bet they'll find that McCabe lacked intent to do the thing he intentionally did.

There's video at the link, and additional details, like the disclosure that McCabe met with Terry McAuliffe in 2015 (along with his wife, in a candidate-recruitment pitch).

Posted by Ace at 04:42 PM Comments

Following the Example of the Fund for Clintons, the Foundation for McCains Refuses to Disclose Its Largest Donor's Largesse

—Ace

And John McCain is the guy who brought us the McCain-Feingold Campaign "Reform" Act, requiring anyone who gives $250 or more to a political campaign to be disclosed.

I didn't make that connection. That's in Richard Pollock's article:

The McCain Institute for International Leadership executives refuse to disclose how much money big donors have contributed to the nonprofit that's named after Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain, The Daily Caller News Foundation Investigative Group has learned.

McCain was the architect of the landmark Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002-- more popularly known as "McCain-Feingold" -- that required public disclosure of all contributions of at least $250 in federal elections. Former Wisconsin Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold co-sponsored the measure with McCain.

But the McCain Institute -- created in 2012 with an $8.7 million donation of funds remaining from McCain's unsuccessful 2008 presidential campaign - refused Monday to disclose the amounts it received from its biggest donors who gave $100,000 or more....

They did divulge a list of people who had given $100,000 or more. But they didn't specify how much each had given, except that they'd given $100,000... or more.

Pollock points out this is "misleading," as some donors -- like a Saudi organization -- are listed as giving $100,00 or more, but in fact they gave a lot more: Ten times more, in fact. A cool million.

The McCain Institute is refusing to specify how big their donations are from large donors.

Posted by Ace at 03:26 PM Comments

Claire McCaskill, Who Claimed to Have Never Met With Russian Ambassador, Actually Attended Black-Tie Affair at His Home

—Ace

Was she lying, or just mentally infirm?

Earlier this year, Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) claimed she never had a "call or meeting" with the Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak -- "ever." She was trying to make a point in a thinly veiled attempt to suggest a connection between President Donald Trump's campaign and Russia.

"No call or meeting w/Russian ambassador. Ever. Ambassadors call members of Foreign [Relations Committee]," she tweeted.

The Democrat's words are now coming back to bite her. On Monday, CNN reported that McCaskill actually attended a "black-tie reception" at the Russian ambassador's home in Washington, D.C., in 2015.

Posted by Ace at 02:22 PM Comments

Was the FBI Investigation into General Flynn Just Payback for Him Embarrassing the FBI by Supporting an FBI Agent Who Complained of Sex Discrimination?

—Ace

I don't know the answer.

But, as no less an authority than Chuck Schumer told us, you never go to war with the Deep State -- they have a thousand ways to get payback.

John Solomon and Sarah Carter continue digging:

The FBI launched a criminal probe against former Trump National Security Adviser Michael Flynn two years after the retired Army general roiled the bureau’s leadership by intervening on behalf of a decorated counterterrorism agent who accused now-Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe and other top officials of sexual discrimination, according to documents and interviews.

Flynn’s intervention on behalf of Supervisory Special Agent Robyn Gritz was highly unusual, and included a letter in 2014 on his official Pentagon stationary, a public interview in 2015 supporting Gritz’s case and an offer to testify on her behalf. His offer put him as a hostile witness in a case against McCabe, who was soaring through the bureau’s leadership ranks.


The FBI sought to block Flynn’s support for the agent, asking a federal administrative law judge in May 2014 to keep Flynn and others from becoming a witness in her Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) case, memos obtained by Circa show. Two years later, the FBI opened its inquiry of Flynn.

The EEOC case, which is still pending, was serious enough to require McCabe to submit to a sworn statement to investigators, the documents show.

The deputy director’s testimony provided some of the strongest evidence in the case of possible retaliation, because he admitted the FBI opened an internal investigation into Gritz’s personal conduct after learning the agent “had filed or intended to file” a sex discrimination complaint against her supervisors.

McCabe eventually became the bureau’s No. 2 executive and emerged as a central player in the FBI’s Russia election tampering investigation, putting him in a position to impact the criminal inquiry against Flynn.

Three FBI employees told Circa they personally witnessed McCabe make disparaging remarks about Flynn before and during the time the retired Army general emerged as a figure in the Russia case.

See this Flashback from the Washington Post: the FBI reviewed Flynn's calls with the Russian ambassador back in December and found nothing illicit at all.

And so they turned to trying to nail him on a paperwork foul having nothing to do with Russia at all.

Almost as if the top echelons of the FBI had been politicized and weaponized.

Thank God we have a cadre of "conservatives" to lecture us every day that anyone who works in a hierarchical organization and wears a suit is due the unquestioning obedience one would offer a living god.


Posted by Ace at 01:31 PM Comments

CNN Denies Any "Connection" Between Its Retracted False Report on a Probe into Trump Associate Anthony Scaramucci and Their Also-False Report that James Comey Would Deny Trump's Claim That He Was Told Three Times He Wasn't Under Investigation

—Ace

Why deny a connection? Well, for one thing, CNN relies almost exclusively on leaks from anonymous sources now, so we have no way of knowing if the #FakeNews source for the retracted Scaramucci piece is also the same #FakeNews source for the wildly-wrong "Comey will refute Trump" #FakeNews.

And also, as Eric Wemple points out in the National Laughingstock:

In advance of former FBI Director James Comey's Senate testimony, CNN used four bylines -- Gloria Borger, Eric Lichtblau, Jake Tapper and Brian Rokus -- to report that Comey would contradict Trump's claims that the fired FBI chief had told him that he wasn't a target of an investigation. Instead, the opposite turned out to be the case: Comey confirmed those claims of Trump. The story piled poor editorial judgment on top of faulty reporting, in that there was little merit in predicting Comey’s testimony a day or two before he gave it.

John Sexton notes:

It's worth noting that, despite CNN's claim the current screwup was not connected to the prior one, Eric Lichtblau's name appeared on both pieces.

Lichtbau was one of the three CNN personnel who "resigned" in the wake of the Scaramucci humiliation.

How bad is it? This bad: Even Redstate is slamming CNN for it.

The people getting the ax should tell you just how bad the story was. These are not nameless interns or low level writers. These are major names.


I hate seeing people get fired but CNN has deteriorated to the point where there is literally no lie they will not tell if they think in will damage the Trump administration and get clicks.

"streiff" makes a point I make a lot, and I'm glad that someone else is trying to embarrass "conservative" fans of Jake Tapper into noting that Tapper is a serial offender, instead of giving him a pass because he pays attention to their silly asses on Twitter (PS, he's using you, and he talks to anyone with more than 1000 followers if it can advance his career, and he's on Twitter like always for crying out loud) and because he appears on their Electric God Box, I mean, television, which is apparently enough to give some conservative men Celebrity Crushes:

Note that one of the bylines in the story cited above belongs to one of the guys fired over the Scaramucci story and another is Jake Tapper who, for reasons that escapes me, has reduced a lot of alleged conservatives to a fanboi status that borders on homoeroticism.

Well, I couldn't embarrass them, but wow, that little stinger just might.

Guys: Stop giving Jake Tapper taint-paints while he pees on your belly. It may be a kind of love, but it's a bad kind of love.

Posted by Ace at 12:16 PM Comments

Oh My: Project Veritas Posts Sting Video of CNN Supervising Producer Admitting CNN Has No Evidence of Russian Conclusion, But Zucker Has Mandated They Cover Russia Around the Clock for Ratings

—Ace

He didn't actually link those last two things, but he did say CNN's CEO (which Project Veritas identifies as Jeff Zucker) "gave" CNN a day and a half of coverage of the Paris Accords, and then said "Let's get back to Russia." And the producer admits that the reason CNN talks about little but Russia -- despite having no evidence about "collusion," and despite the story being "mostly bullshit" at the moment -- is "ratings."

Project Veritas says this is Part 1, and more will be coming.

Two videos below: a highlights teaser they posted on Twitter, and then their fuller Part 1 video.

Update: Unexpectedly, Trump gloated on Twitter.

Continue reading


Posted by Ace at 11:14 AM Comments

Mid-Morning Open Thread

—CBD

Zavros The Swan.jpg

The Swan
Michael Zavros

Okay...so it's from this century. Shut up.

DON'T JUDGE ME!

Posted by CBD at 09:30 AM Comments

The Morning Report 6/27/17

—J.J. Sefton

glom.jpg

Good morning, kids. The President and America had an overall great day in court yesterday. The Supreme Court, that is. Justice Neil Gorsuch is looking like everything we hoped he would be and a key reason why many voted for Trump. While we did lose a second amendment battle against the rogue state of California, his dissent, coauthored with Clarence Thomas, is Scalia-like in its brilliance and eloquence. Let's hope it's only a taste of what's to come.

Next, a potential bombshell; a secret memo indicates that the FBI's investigation into Michael Flynn may have been engineered by now acting director McCabe as a retaliation for Flynn interceding on behalf of a woman who was planning on filing a sex discrimination against McCabe and other top G-Men. And not unrelated, James O'Keefe and Project Veritas has undercover footage showing a top CNN producer admitting the Russia thing is bullshit.

The GOP Renege and Repackage bill was scored by the CBO, for whatever that's worth. Of course noted champion of the free market Warren Buffett insists that all of us abandon the free market and embrace socialist NIH-style single payer. And alta-koker tyrant wannabe Bernardo Sandino and his wifey are being investigated for evidently goniffing a real estate deal in Vermont. It would be laughable were it not for the fact that too many young people, and too many adults that ought to know better look to this failure-of-a-man as a savior.

Anyway, links from around the world, across the nation and up your street. Have a better one and remain blessed.

Posted by J.J. Sefton at 07:05 AM Comments

Monday Overnight Open Thread (6/26/17) First Monday of The Week Edition

—Misanthropic Humanitarian

mon happylanding.jpg

(Happy Landing in The ONT)


*****


Quotes of The Day


Quote I

So many books, so little time.Frank Zappa


Quote II

To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment. Ralph Waldo Emerson


Quote III

A psychologist said to me, there are only two important questions you have to ask yourself. What do you really feel? And, what do you really want? If you can answer those two, you probably can leave your neuroses behind you. Harold Ramis

Continue reading


Posted by Misanthropic Humanitarian at 10:02 PM Comments

Whoa: Three CNN Personnel Connected to #FakeNews Russia Report "Resign"

—Ace

I didn't believe that CNN would actually discipline anybody. For once, I was wrong about CNN.

Wow, they really must have done something wrong here.

Three CNN staffers have resigned following the publication and subsequent retraction of a story linking a Trump transition team member to the Russia-related investigations.

The piece, published late last week, cited an anonymous source saying the Senate Intelligence Committee was looking into the chief executive of a $10-billion Russian investment fund who met with financier Anthony Scaramucci before the inauguration.

The reporter, Pulitzer-prize nominee Thomas Frank, assistant managing editor Eric Lichtblau (who recently joined from the New York Times) and Lex Haris, the executive editor in charge of investigations, are all out.

"In the aftermath of the retraction of a story published on CNN.com, CNN has accepted the resignations of the employees involved in the story's publication," CNN said in a statement.

Scaramucci threatened a lawsuit, Politico reports, but media companies are used to that and usually ignore such threats. Price of doing business.

If they pulled this down in reaction to that threat, they must have been pretty sure they'd lose.

Meanwhile, Jim Acosta keeps whining that he doesn't get to play pretend Hero of #TheResistance with cameras on in the White House briefings:


Sean Spicer seems to make fun of Acosta's camera-hungry nature here:



Posted by Ace at 06:48 PM Comments

Report: Fusion GPS, Which Injected the Infamous "Pee Party" Dossier Into the #FakeNews Bloodstream, Is, Get This, Stonewalling Senate Investigators About Its Connections to the Democrat Party and the FBI

—Ace

Does Adam Schiff demand "all the answers" to these questions too?


The D.C. firm that commissioned the Russia intelligence dossier smearing President Donald Trump is refusing to answer questions and provide records to the Senate panel investigating its connections to the Democratic Party, according to the New York Post's Paul Sperry. The so-called "dodgy dossier" helped spark the Russia scandal that has been bedeviling Trump since the election. Astonishingly, the FBI became involved with the dossier last summer, even though it knew the salacious report lacked credibility -- and now it is also stonewalling the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Fusion GPS calls itself a “research and strategic intelligence firm” but is well known in Washington to be an opposition-research group for Democrats. According to Sperry, the firm's founders are "more political activists than journalists" and have "a pro-Hillary, anti-Trump agenda."

A source I know with experience in intelligence operations told me, flatly, that this whole matter was "an op" -- a covert intelligence operation against Trump, cooked up by spooks opposed to him -- from start to finish.

Posted by Ace at 05:50 PM Comments

Important Story From Vice: Straight Men Aren't Lining Up to Have Sex With Transexuals

—Ace

There's a lot of stories like this -- trans people complaining that people whose gender identities are stubbornly non-fluid aren't willing to date or have sex with people whose sexuality is ambiguous.

Vice is just the latest to push the idea, as Heat St calls it, "pity f***s for social justice."

I ask this a lot but I'll ask it again: If it's fair game for George Stephanopolous to ask Mitt Romney, out of nowhere, whether he'd ban contraception-- that is, to ask a Republican about an idea he'd never suggested, just to put him in the position of being associated with a fringe sort of position and also having to distance himself from a fringe sort of position that may be held by some of his potential voters -- why is George Stephanopolous not asking prominent Democrats if they agree with the proposition that being "tolerant" of gay and/or trans people means that straight people should be willing to date them?

If we get asked such wedge issue questions about difficult, embarrassing, wedge-issue sexual topics, why the hell shouldn't Claire McCaskill and Elizabeth Warren and Lord God King Barack Obama be asked if "Love Trumps Hate" means that straight people should repress their own "Born This Way" Sexuality and do some gay dating?

Posted by Ace at 04:37 PM Comments

CNN Publishes Single-Source Claim on Russia Investigation, Then Disappears It, Then Finally Retracts;
Forbids Reporters From Running Any Russia Story Without Permission, Promises "Discipline"

—Ace

Before getting to that, Camille Paglia said last week that the Democrat Party had broken journalism, and that it would take "decades" to heal the wounds.

It would take decades to recover if they ever self-critiqued and self-corrected, which they're psychologically incapable of doing.

"It's obscene," she said. "It's outrageous, OK? It shows that the Democrats are nothing now but words and fantasy and hallucination and Hollywood. There’s no journalism left. What’s happened to The New York Times? What's happened to the major networks? It's an outrage."

"I'm a professor of media studies, in addition to a professor of humanities, OK?" she continued. "And I think it's absolutely grotesque the way my party has destroyed journalism. Right now, it is going to take decades to recover from this atrocity that's going on where the news media have turned themselves over to the most childish fraternity, kind of buffoonish behavior.”

Now on to the newest CNN #FakeNews: CNN reported, on the basis of a single anonymous source, that a Trump associate did business with Russia, and that he's now the target of a criminal probe.

They then retracted. First, they seem to have done so without acknowledging the retraction, just deleting all mentions of the story in their Twitter fed and nuking links to it.

But after Buzzfeed asked where the story went to, they issued a note stating it had been retracted, and failed to even meet CNN's Like Whatever Man exacting editorial standards for Russia reporting. If you can imagine such a thing.

CNN claimed Senate investigators are looking into whether or not Scaramucci discussed lifting sanctions with Kirill Dmitriev, the chief executive of the $10-billion Russian Direct Investment Fund, in a meeting just four days before President Donald Trump’s inauguration.

“CNN.com published a story connecting Anthony Scaramucci with investigations into the Russian Direct Investment Fund,” CNN said in its editor’s note, “That story did not meet CNN’s editorial standards and has been retracted. Links to the story have been disabled. CNN apologizes to Mr. Scaramucci.”

Given that CNN is actually apologizing, and nuking the story from orbit, I have to guess that this story didn't just fail to meet their "editorial standards," whatever those might turn out to be when discovered, but was objectively and perhaps actionably false.

CNN is now forcing reporters to pre-clear all "Russia-related" stories by high ranking editors before publishing anywhere -- including social media -- and promising "discipline" over this error:

Over the weekend, CNN's executives busied themselves with a new process for reporting on Russia, Buzzfeed later learned. According to an internal memo, all reporting from CNN on that topic will have to get specific approval from executives before appearing on any of their platforms. Jon Passantino's source says that disciplinary action will also be forthcoming over last week’s debacle...

When a report is so fake that even CNN is panicking over it-- well, that's CNN showing us what it really is. A hotbed of conspiracy theorists and vulgar partisans.


Posted by Ace at 03:09 PM Comments

Supreme Court Rules State Cannot Discriminate Against Religious Schools

—Ace

Gorsuch strikes twice.

The case involved grants made generally available to all schools in the state for refurbishment of run-down playgrounds. But then the state ruled that, while these funds were appropriated for all schools, religious schools nonetheless had to be affirmatively discriminated against, because you can't have government money ever going to icky religious schools (even if the money is not specifically to advance religion, but is just another state boondoggle of taxpayer cash for hard-to-argue-against feelgood spending programs).

Gorsuch and six other justices said Nah, brah.

The justices ruled 7-2 that Missouri stretched the constitutional separation of church and state too far by declaring a Lutheran church ineligible to receive a competitive state grant for playground resurfacing. The decision could have implications for more than 30 states that block public funds from going to religious organizations.

Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the decision. Only Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor dissented.

Even though the state's denial of funds likely would lead only to "a few extra scraped knees," Roberts said, "the exclusion of Trinity Lutheran from a public benenfit for which it is otherwise qualified, solely because it is a church, is odious to our Constitution all the same, and cannot stand."

...

"It does seem as though ... this is a clear burden on a constitutional right," liberal Justice Elena Kagan said then, in reference to the state's refusal to treat Trinity Lutheran Church equally to other non-profits seeking state grants. The church had met all the neutral criteria for the program.

Gorsuch and Justice Clarence Thomas would have gone further than Roberts, who suggested in a footnote to the court's decision that the case "involves express discrimination based on religious identity with respect to playground resurfacing. We do not address religious uses of funding or other forms of discrimination."

Gorsuch wrote: "The general principles here do not permit discrimination against religious exercise -- whether on the playground or anywhere else."

So once more: Gorsuch would have gone farther.

No John Roberts taint on this one.

As Craig Ferguson used to say, it's a great day in America.

Posted by Ace at 01:33 PM Comments

Supreme Court Reinstates, Mostly, Trump's Travel Ban;
Dissenters' Argument Is That They Should Have Restored All of the Ban

—Ace

The only limitation the court is permitting on the travel ban is for those who have a bona-fide pre-existing close relative in the country or bona-fide, established-previously business in the country. Such persons may visit the country.

But for all others, the Trump ban is back on.

Incidentally, the opinion doesn't even mention Trump's campaign statements, suggesting that the Court views this entire line of argument to be so illegitimate as to not even be worth a rebuttal.

This is a decision about a preliminary injunction -- the Court has struck most of the lower courts' injunction against enforcement of the ban down. But the case has not been heard in full on the merits yet. That'll happen later -- but it's not looking good for #TheResistance.

The resistance's greatest legal victory has been gutted, and not even Ruth Bader Ginsburg accepted its most extreme arguments.


Posted by Ace at 12:04 PM Comments

Guest Post: Observations From Flyover Country (Cumberland Astro)

—CBD

Since Donald Trump was elected I have seen a spate of local news stories about companies building, expanding, or investing in manufacturing plants within a 50 mile radius of Chattanooga. With these new plants there will be hundreds of new manufacturing jobs. Although pundits in Washington who are much smarter than me (just ask them) keep saying that manufacturing in America is dead, I'm observing a multitude of companies behaving otherwise, including several foreign companies. I don't think the Acela crowd is aware that manufacturing is expanding in business-friendly states.

Continue reading


Posted by CBD at 11:15 AM Comments

Mid-Morning Open Thread

—CBD

Constable_Salisbury_meadows.jpg

Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows
John Constable

It looks like a crossword jigsaw puzzle, and a damned complicated one at that. The artist's technical prowess and patience is obvious, but I wonder if that is all that is necessary? It's certainly not evocative of any personal triumph or tragedy. I guess it could be seen as social commentary.

Or just a cool painting.

I don't know, but it's fun.

Posted by CBD at 09:30 AM Comments

The Morning Report 6/26/17

—J.J. Sefton

RepnRep.jpg

Good morning, kids. Another week is upon us and first up we have the continuing meltdown of the Media/Democrat Complex as their Russia collusion/obstruction-of-justice meme is crumbling like a wet blini. Propaganda outlet CNN is front and center after having pumped out and then been forced to retract a complete fable (pushed most notably by Senator Elizabeth Warpath among others) their own media critic Brian Stetler was refused comment by his own employer. Wow.

Next, there is a push to ram home the Senate Obamacare Rehash and Relabel Bill by the July 4th holiday. I find it infuriating that a) it doesn't go nearly far enough in dismantling the monster and bolstering free market solutions (as promised) but that b) those who point this out are labeled as "purists." Sorry, but no amount of ketchup and Everclear will wash down a feces sammich and make it taste like sirloin steak. If it's not obvious by now that this is all kabu-kakke theater to keep in place a bureaucracy that keeps DC denizens empowered and swimming in lucre, then you (the royal you) should not be coming here any more.

Lastly, the final link about this shyster lawyer who scammed over half a billion dollars in SSDI money is infuriating to say the least. It is a perfect example of why we need tort reform, judicial reform, entitlement reform as well as why government functions best when it functions least. And if Obamacare remains whole, in part, or as Mark Levin warns we get single payer, the fraud and abuse outlined above will look like a rounding error in what's to come. Sadly, to paraphrase Oberst von Scherbach "you will not get them." Anyway, links from around the world, across the nation and up your street. Have a better one and remain blessed.

Posted by J.J. Sefton at 07:00 AM Comments

Sunday Overnight Open Thread (6/25/17) Rusty Edition

—Misanthropic Humanitarian

rusty truck.jpg

(Here's hoping this isn't the entire ONT)

*****


Quotes of The Day


Quote I

A vacation is what you take when you can no longer take what you've been taking. Earl Wilson


Quote II

Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it. Steve Jobs


Quote III

Kindness is in our power, even when fondness is not. Samuel Johnson

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Posted by Misanthropic Humanitarian at 09:45 PM Comments

C'est La Vie (MJ)

—Open Blogger

Our civic debate and the intellectualism surrounding it has become boring. We all know the prism through which Charles Blow (racism), Thomas Friedman (globalism), or any left leaning publication will present its view. Everything the Left does is predictable.

The Right is oftentimes similarly rote, although there exists a stronger willingness to debate an issue beyond the merely emotional. It's more about the construct than the destruct; the depth and breadth.

Whereas speech is the hallmark of the Right, it is anathema to the Left. Their adherence to a limited cadre of acceptable words has led directly to their stunted and sheltered views.

I believe this unwillingness for honest diagnosis is leading to a growing, if not already fatal wound in Europe; the pinnacle of Leftism.

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Posted by Open Blogger at 07:00 PM Comments

Food Thread: When I Use A Word, It Means Just What I Choose It To Mean -- Neither More Nor Less

—CBD

fancy chef.jpg

Good morning to all you 'rons, 'ettes, lurkers, and lurkettes. Welcome once again to the stately, prestigious, internationally acclaimed and high-class Sunday Afternoon Food Thread, where men are men, all the 'ettes are gorgeous (and naked under their aprons), knives are always sharp and never used to cut tofu or kale, and special snowflakes starve to death. And unlike other AoSHQ threads, the Sunday Afternoon Food Thread is so hoity-toity, we have a book! And bacon...

Or at least we will have a book, if you get off your asses and submit some recipes (and just once, could you color inside the lines please? We have rules!) And if Weasel and Bluebell and the rest of the reprobates and voluptuaries and debauchees (who claim to be assisting this grand project but really are just stealing the booze samples), put down the bourbon bottle and actually get something done.

******

Now that we have spent weeks touting the Moron Cookbook, nagging you to refine and submit Aunt Tillie's recipe for rutabaga mash with chopped chicken feet, it is time to discuss the inescapable reality that recipes are not received wisdom, that they are, at least for people who are comfortable in the kitchen, guidelines and ideas, not rigid and immutable laws.

Sort of like the US Constitution is for liberals.

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Posted by CBD at 04:00 PM Comments

The Human Cost Of Government Regulation: 79 Dead In One Day

—CBD

This NYT article is a mass of evasive and sneaky explanations for the failure of government regulations and regulators to create and enforce reasonable building codes. At every turn it seems it was pressure from "business friendly" politicians that forced the regulators to allow substandard materials to be used. Why Grenfell Tower Burned: Regulators Put Cost Before Safety is a typical NYT article; it wows the unwary with seemingly in-depth reporting but it is clear that the conclusion was written before the reporting was complete.

Promising to cut "red tape," business-friendly politicians evidently judged that cost concerns outweighed the risks of allowing flammable materials to be used in facades. Builders in Britain were allowed to wrap residential apartment towers -- perhaps several hundred of them -- from top to bottom in highly flammable materials, a practice forbidden in the United States and many European countries. And companies did not hesitate to supply the British market.

How this would have turned out worse without the existence of any regulation is difficult to imagine. The only difference would be that the people responsible would go to jail. The fire-safety regulators and the building code writers and the inspectors and all of the other government bureaucrats whose very existence is to prevent exactly this catastrophe will be carefully insulated from any blame. There will be a large and expensive government inquiry, and they will find irregularities in the regulatory apparatus, but mostly they will find that it was private industry that is the real culprit. "Mean old Alcoa should never have sold us that exterior cladding!"

A formal government inquiry into the fire has just begun. But interviews with tenants, industry executives and fire safety engineers point to a gross failure of government oversight, a refusal to heed warnings from inside Britain and around the world and a drive by successive governments from both major political parties to free businesses from the burden of safety regulations.

So the very people who failed so spectacularly will be doing the inquiry? Brilliant!

And let's not forget to blame rich people!

Survivors have charged that the facade was installed to beautify their housing project for the benefit of wealthy neighbors.

Posted by CBD at 12:00 PM Comments

Sunday Morning Book Thread 06-25-2017

—OregonMuse

city library, oslo.jpg
Central Public Library, Oslo, Norway


Good morning to all you 'rons, 'ettes, lurkers, and lurkettes. Welcome once again to the stately, prestigious, internationally acclaimed and high-class Sunday Morning Book Thread, where men are men, all the 'ettes are gorgeous, safe spaces are underneath your house and are used as protection against actual dangers, like natural disasters, or Literally Hitler, and special snowflakes do not last. And unlike other AoSHQ comment threads, the Sunday Morning Book Thread is so hoity-toity, pants are required. Even if it's these pants, which look like they can also be used as a sail for a good-sized yacht.


When The English Stopped Being Gentlemen And Started Fighting Dirty

Going all the way back to WWII for this:

In preparation for D-Day, a highly secretive British department known as Baker Street worked to drop 250 saboteurs behind enemy lines with one purpose: to stop the German army from sending supplies and reinforcements to Normandy. These guerillas were tasked with a massive coordinated sabotage mission to frustrate and block Hitler’s war machine in any and all ways possible. Especially important was stopping Germany’s most lethal division, the 2nd SS Panzer Division, Das Reich.

One saboteur destroyed all of Das Reich’s tank transporters by replacing the axle oil with axle grease mixed with an abrasive, forcing the division to travel by road and damaging six out of every 10 tanks. A separate team then barraged Das Reich with sabotage after sabotage, including felling trees in their path and planting bombs beneath them. In the end, what should have been a 72-hour journey took Hitler’s crack tank division 17 days—enough time for the allies to establish their beachhead.

All of this is detailed in the book Churchill’s Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare: The Mavericks Who Plotted Hitler’s Defeat by Giles Milton. The D-Day operations of this group was part of a larger, more comprehensive war effort:

In the spring of 1939, a top-secret organization was founded in London: its purpose was to plot the destruction of Hitler's war machine through spectacular acts of sabotage.

The guerrilla campaign that followed was every bit as extraordinary as the six men who directed it. One of them, Cecil Clarke, was a maverick engineer who had spent the 1930s inventing futuristic caravans. Now, his talents were put to more devious use: he built the dirty bomb used to assassinate Hitler's favorite, Reinhard Heydrich. Another, William Fairbairn, was a portly pensioner with an unusual passion: he was the world's leading expert in silent killing, hired to train the guerrillas being parachuted behind enemy lines. Led by dapper Scotsman Colin Gubbins, these men—along with three others—formed a secret inner circle that, aided by a group of formidable ladies, single-handedly changed the course Second World War: a cohort hand-picked by Winston Churchill, whom he called his Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare.

Perhaps this is the last great untold story of the Second World War.


It Pays To Increase Your Word Power®

‘All their geese are swans’ is a 17th century expression implying that everything that somebody says is wildly exaggerated or overblown.

Usage: All of CNN's geese are swans.

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Posted by OregonMuse at 09:05 AM Comments

Overnight Open Thread (24 Jun 2017)

—CDR M

It looks the firm behind the dubious intelligence dossier on DJT is really an opposition-research group for Democrats and are political activists. You don't say. No wonder they are stonewalling the congressional investigators.

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Posted by CDR M at 10:09 PM Comments

Saturday Evening Movie Thread 06-24-2017 [Hosted By: TheJamesMadison]

—OregonMuse

Starting at Zero

theater interior.jpg

When the lights go down and the movie comes up, the audience is opening up to new experiences, new adventures, and new connections. Most of the time, these new things are fake, but the audience is willing to suspend disbelief and try to connect with what's happening on the 60-foot screen before them.

But no matter how successful or abysmal the effort on the part of the artists is, the audience always starts at zero. They have no emotional connection with any of the characters. Because of the artifice of fiction in general, there's a wall between the audience and the film on basic things like setting even if it's set in a familiar place.

What happens next is the movie tries to convince the audience of its authenticity. It's not always an authenticity around placing the events in a real world context, but an authenticity that creates an emotional connection of some kind.

You can take this a bit more granularly and say that individual sequences need to build up to specific emotional payoffs. Without the buildup, the emotions meant to derive from the payoff never really materialize. Think of it like a punchline without a joke. That drumbeat and clash of symbols without any humor before it.

What I show next is three examples of payoff. Two have, in my opinion, well established buildups, and the third does…not.


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Posted by OregonMuse at 08:02 PM Comments

Saturday Afternoon Chess/Open Thread (Featuring Dress Pr0n) 06-24-2017

—OregonMuse


dogs playing chess.jpg
"OK, so you know the loser has to go over to the Obamas' house for dinner, right?"

Good afternoon morons and moronettes, and welcome to the Saturday Afternoon Chess/Open Thread, the only AoSHQ thread with content specifically for all of us chess nerds who pay homage in the temple of Caïssa, goddess of the chessboard. Also, dress pr0n. Each week, I pick out a few lovely, modest, conservative dresses for the 'ettes to admire and appraise. And, for those of you who aren't nerdly enough for chess, you can use this thread to talk about checkers, or other games, or politics, or whatever you wish, only please try to keep it civil. Nobody wants to get in the middle of a pie fight on a Saturday afternoon.


“A bad day of Chess is better than any good day at work”
(Anonymous)


Problem 1 - White To Play (198 )

Hint: White can force a win of material, or the game


20170624 - Problem 1.jpg
rbb2r1k/p3qp1p/1p2pp2/8/3P2Q1/P2B4/1P3PPP/R4RK1 w - - 0 1

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Posted by OregonMuse at 05:15 PM Comments

Ace of Spades Pet Thread (6/24/17)

—Misanthropic Humanitarian

pethread 6 24.jpg


Welcome to the almost world famous Ace of Spades Pet Thread. The thread is a little different today as I've been away and off the grid. So a light thread today. Still grab yourself a beverage and enjoy.

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Posted by Misanthropic Humanitarian at 03:00 PM Comments

Saturday Gardening Thread: Firewater [KT]

—Open Blogger

DSCF0558.JPG

Oregon Tiger Lily, Photographed by Kindltot

Well, we've got something pretty close to "fire" going on all over the southwest. "High pressure system", they call it. "Miserable" I call it. And some actual fires in a few places. One near my cousin's home. And there is a lot of water in the Southeast about now. Is everybody OK?

The closest thing I have had to actual "firewater" this week has been sedatives for a rather unpleasant medical procedure. And we are adjusting to someone who works a night shift moving into the house. I have not been well-organized, so don't expect much of a theme today. There are some garden news items today, though.

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Posted by Open Blogger at 12:24 PM Comments

Thread below the Gardening Thread: Roman Drama [KT]

—Open Blogger

Serving your mid-day open thread needs

256px-Choregos.jpg

All-male theatrical troupe preparing for a masked performance
House of the Tragic Poet, Pompeii

A week ago, before Johnny Depp, um, made the news, Neo-Neocon wrote:

The current New York production of "Julius Caesar" in which Caesar is portrayed as a Trump-like figure is no ordinary propaganda.

Caesar is a particular figure with particular characteristics. Why was he assassinated? Because the assassins thought he had become a tyrant. They met a bad end themselves, as assassins often do, but along the way they felt they were doing Rome a service by ridding it of a dangerous leader. They considered it to be not an assassination, but tyrannicide. . .

She goes on to make some interesting comparisons with the theatrical visions of John Wilkes Booth. But she also includes commentary on a writer at HuffPo calling for Trump's legal execution. The HuffPo writer also called for additional executions. The HuffPo writer's plan for purifying the land is considerably more disturbing to me than Johnny Depp's recent foray into heroic fantasy. Because Johnny Depp is kind of crazy. And because the HuffPo piece actually got published.

And because Julius Caesar was not the only guy assassinated in Rome.

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Posted by Open Blogger at 11:13 AM Comments

Saturday Morning Weird News Dump (6/24/17)

—Misanthropic Humanitarian

satmorningweirdnews.jpg

Damn dog!! Doesn't he know it's Vacation Day Saturday??????

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Posted by Misanthropic Humanitarian at 08:05 AM Comments

EMT 06/24/2017

—krakatoa

I've spent every free moment the last 2 weeks rehabbing my first house to put it up for sale. Been a rental property for the last 6 years or so. Good tenants, but lots of stuff to do.

I think I am about 2 days from done.

New paint inside, pressure washed the siding, new kitchen counter, re grouted all the tile, fresh stain on the deck, repainted the garage, new caulk everywhere, reseeded the lawn... I contracted out for the counter install and some of the exterior trim repairs and painting. The rest is all me. The wife doesn't know this yet, but when this place sells, daddy gets a new TV.

Posted by krakatoa at 05:52 AM Comments

Overnight Open Thread (23 Jun 2017)

—CDR M

It's going to take years to build back up trust in the FBI and other government agencies. Who does the FBI work for?

Considering how ludicrous the FBI's conclusions are as it relates to an attack on the third ranking member of the House of Representatives, you might reconsider whether to trust the FBI's conclusions in other areas, as well. And this is how our faith in institutions is degraded: steadily, gradually, with incident after incident where men in suits stand in front of microphones and make claims we know are not the whole truth.

If CIA contractors are willing to hack vending machines, what else do you think they're willing to do with capabilities they have access to in their official capacity? No one has really been punished at the IRS for their political shenanigans and the DOJ obviously interfered with the Hillary private server investigation. Until big name folks are held accountable for their violations, public faith in these institutions will continue to crater.

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Posted by CDR M at 09:54 PM Comments

"Russia, Russia, Russia!:" Kellyanne Conway Goofs on Indian-Slurring Alisyn Camarotta

—Ace

Alisyn Camarotta was most recently embarrassed when she asked a girl of Indian descent who'd just won a national spelling bee to spell "confeve," and then, when the girl got it slightly wrong, excused her mistake because "it doesn't have a Sanskrit root, which is what you're probably used to."

The Indian girl in question lives in the United States, speaks English, and wouldn't know Sanskrit even if she lived in India, where less than 1% of the population speaks it as a primary language.

Apart from being an expert on Languages That Indians Don't Really Speak, Camarotta also fancies herself a bit of a "player" in matters of national security and geopolitics.

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Posted by Ace at 08:30 PM Comments



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Recipe Submissions

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Cookbook List O' Shame
Garrett
-Butter Bourbon Pudding
Bluebell
-peanut butter cookies
J.J.Sefton
-Anything from mom!
laura w
-Edible hump balm
ScoggDog
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Weasel
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Peaches
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************
Sarah Palin suing NYT over that Giffords Targeting lie.
Sue, baby, sue!
And She Hired HULK HOGAN'S LAWYERS! (who killed Gawker)

[ArthurK]
Headlines: 6/24/2017
These Are the ‘Official Fake Nipples of the Resistance’ Don't ask me to explain this; I have no idea.
H/T Bannion [CBD]
Headlines: 06/23/2017
Dems give politically connected judge six-figure gig she’s too obese to do
Read the article. it's worse than it seems. And blame "ChristyBlinky," not me. [CBD]
Headlines: 6/22/2017
Vicious White Supremicist White-splains... "It is in your hands to stop all the killing and all the shooting wherever you might be. Because you cannot say, ‘Black lives matter,’ and then kill yourselves." [CBD]
The Press, Filled With Ignorance and Superstition, Always Believes It's the Smartest Person in the Room
When Dunning-Kruger meets Malignant Narcissism with Delusions of Grandeur
Legal pot and car crashes: Yes, there's a link "Legalized recreational marijuana use in Colorado, Oregon and Washington correlates to about a 3 percent increase in auto collision claim frequencies compared to states without such legislation, according to a new Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI) study." I'm shocked...SHOCKED! [CBD]
Headlines: 6/21/2017
As Many as 5.7 Million Non-Citizens Voted in 2008 Election
"If an illegal alien already has a fake driver's license and registers to vote, there is no way anyone can stop him from casting a ballot."
[ArthurK]
French Writer Michel Houllenbecq on whether he was surprised by Trump's victory: "In France we thought everybody liked Obama, but maybe the media were lying. Maybe they didn't." Yes, Michel, they were lying. Taken from Vice.
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