Monday, May 9, 2016

I'm back, but after today's post I am mostly suspending the blog

We are back from visiting LCpl John and Donna Payne in Folsom, Louisiana.
I will post an update on that when I get a breather to download the photos. We had a good time, but the situation with John is not good. ~Bob

Suspending most blog posts--please hold email
A few months ago, faced with the complete loss of any free time to sleep (70-77 hours a week required for my current health) the medical routine (35-40 hours a week depending on what's on) and having to put 3-4 hours a day into completing the blog, I tried to pull back. I unsubscribed from over 50 news feed, and went to posting every three days versus every day. That didn't work. Readers here and on Facebook took up the slack, and with elections underway, I was back to every other day before we left for Louisiana. While traveling, I opened the computer at night to find I was getting a hundred emails a day. I now have no choice. I am ceasing the news posts I have done since 2009. When I pulled back earlier, I received some abuse for morons who, this being America in the 21st century, felt they were entitled to have me put in several hours a day so they could received news aggregations for free, and called me a quitter for not having the time to give them the news. I offered to help them start a similar blog, and to direct my readers to it. They said they didn't have the time. Frankly, the regular abuse, foul language and name calling from the authoritarian left, including now Trump supporters, won't be missed. I will continue to post me essays, book reviews and other personal stuff, but not the news and opinion items. (Below are items I saved while traveling or before I left.) I will continue to share interesting items on Facebook as time allows. (Follow Robert A. Hall). Thanks for reading. ~Bob

I'm still #NeverTrunp
I have resigned from the board of the county Republican Party, as board members should support the nominee. I do not consider Trump a republican, a conservative, a knowledgeable person, a decent person or electable. (Baring some unexpected event--and a Trump administration, like a Clinton one, will be disastrous for the country.) when I get time, I will draw together the many, many reasons why I as a conservative and a person who values principles cannot vote for Trump. Ever. ~Bob

Book Recommendation: The Story of Earth: The First 4.5 Billion Years, from Stardust to Living Planet. By Robert M. Hazen 
I read this fascinating book for a book club we belong to, and I highly recommend it. Written to be accessible to the average reader (scientific terms aside), it is a crash course in geology, chemistry, astronomy, biology, cosmology, mineralogy, meteorology, paleontology, geophysics and other scientific disciplines. Hazen cites case after case where the "settled science" was overturned by new discoveries and new theories, saying, "It's a funny thing about conventional wisdom, though. Eventually, someone will challenge what everyone knows to be true, and once in a while something fairly interesting will be found." (p-87) He describes a theory he and colleagues were working on that went against the settled science: "Stanley Miller and his followers did what they could to squelch our conclusions and abort our research program. ... 'The vent hypothesis is a real loser,' Miller complained in a 1998 interview. 'I don't understand why we have to even discuss it.'" (P-136) Sounds like the way the efforts of any scientist who questions Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW) is treated today. Hazen and his colleagues theory is now the "settled science."  He cites the "settled science" that the continents had never been together...until they had. And the "settled science" that there was almost no water on Mars...until there was. He notes that there have been six ice ages in the last three million years, and that both hot and cold cycles have ruled the Earth and will certainly come again. "Change is the central theme of Earth's story. The oceans and atmosphere, the surface and deep interior, the geosphere and biosphere--all aspects of our planet have changed incessantly over the aeons." (P-193) "As in the past, Earth will continue to be a planet of incessant flip-flop patterns of change. The climate will become warmer, then cooler, over and over again." He cites the hopefully-far-away certainty of a massive asteroid strike or a mega-volcano eruption, which if massive enough would exterminate the higher life forms--like us. (I have read elsewhere of the possible mega-eruption of the Yellowstone Caldara, which would release hundreds of tons of ash in the air, making much of the US uninhabitable, and doing the world no good. Apparently theses "super-eruptions" happen every 600,000 to 800,000 years. The last one was 630,000 years ago.) Though he couches his statements carefully, Hazen clearly believes that AGW is the "settled science." That may be sincerely held belief, or reflective that any academic who wishes to study the subject without being already firmly committed to an outcome demonstrating AGW will find that he is shunned, his research funding dried up, and tenure or promotion unlikely. Earlier he states that most of the carbon in the atmosphere is put there by volcanoes. Maybe we need an executive order against volcanoes. As the US has cut back in carbon, China and India have doubled down, building new coal-fired electric plants at a terrific rate. I personally think free, unbiased research should be allowed, but if GW is man made, what the US does, even destroying the middleclass and beggaring the poor, won't help. The Third World will sign agreements hoping for a cash transfer, but won't keep them when it is inconvenient. As John Kerry said, "If all the industrial nations went down to zero emissions – remember what I just said, all the industrial emissions went down to zero emissions – it wouldn’t be enough, not when more than 65 percent of the world’s carbon pollution comes from the developing world." In my view, we not only need more research, but preparation for dealing with warming if it comes. But I remember the 70s, when a new ice age was the "settled science," and also all my professors telling me the "Population Bomb" was settled science and there would be mass famine in the US by the 1990, plus a depletion of all the important minerals. I decided not to have kids, and it was all as false as Al Gore's prediction of an ice-free arctic by the summer of 2013. Still, despite the obligatory PC Kowtow to AGW, required on pain of getting a job in the private sector of all academics today, I think Hazen is an honest scientist, and this book well-worth reading. ~Bob


Election analyst flips 11 states toward Democrats due to Trump

Trump spurs some conservative leaders to step back from the GOP
Excerpt: Donald Trump’s looming nomination has spurred some leaders of the conservative movement — for generations, the backbone of the GOP — to break free from a Republican Party now being rapidly reshaped by the New York billionaire’s incendiary tone and unorthodox populism. The extraordinary resistance of many figures on the right this past week to Trump has not been prompted merely by objections to his temperament and fears about his electability in November. At the core has been a calculation by self-identified “movement conservatives” that they would rather preserve their entrenched ideological project than promote a nominee who they believe would violate their creed and ethos.


Worth Reading: If Trump is nominated, the GOP must keep him out of the White House. By George F. Will
Excerpt: Donald Trump’s damage to the Republican Party, although already extensive, has barely begun. Republican quislings will multiply, slinking into support of the most anti-conservative presidential aspirant in their party’s history. These collaborationists will render themselves ineligible to participate in the party’s reconstruction. Ted Cruz’s announcement of his preferred running mate has enhanced the nomination process by giving voters pertinent information. They already know the only important thing about Trump’s choice: His running mate will be unqualified for high office because he or she will think Trump is qualified.

The Data Shows Disaster. By Erick Erickson  
Excerpt: Donald Trump cannot consolidate the Republican base. He drives independent voters away from the GOP. Hispanic voters and women are lost to the GOP with Donald Trump as the nominee. Republicans who voted for Donald Trump have cost conservatives the Supreme Court and will now cost the GOP the White House, Congress, and several state legislatures. But like Donald Trump refusing to ever be in the wrong, his voters will blame everyone but themselves. The data shows disaster and Trump’s voters have decided to put blindfolds on and blame the walls they run in to.

Interesting: Thinking the Unthinkable. How to survive a Trump presidency. By JAMES W. CEASER and OLIVER WARD
A person of conservative integrity and moral principles would refuse to serve in a Trump administration. ~Bob

Excerpt: he GOP establishment is on the verge of falling in line behind Donald Trump, perhaps the most comprehensively reprehensible person ever to seek national office. The pressure for conservative leaders and activists to follow suit will be overwhelming. There are, it seems, no good options. Oppose Trump and you’ll be blamed if he loses, as the bitter shell of the GOP snarls at those who facilitated its electoral collapse. If by some miracle he wins, you’ll be shut out from Trump’s administration, unable to influence him toward conservative policies. So, yes, the options are all bad — in the short term. But broaden your view beyond the race against Hillary, and the choice becomes easier: Will you sacrifice your integrity, your moral fiber, and your intellect for the sake of a single election cycle? A person who spends the next several months defending the indefensible, trying to make sense of the senseless, and excusing the inexcusable stands to do permanent damage to his reputation and the reputation of the movement he represents.

Worth Watching: Hillary Gets Elected if Trump Gets Nominated. By Erick Erickson
Excerpt: Our Principles PAC has out a very pointed new ad in Indiana. It’s going up on TV and radio and also reaching out to voters by phone with this simple message: if Trump gets nominated, Hillary gets elected.

Trump's Feast of Incoherence

The Best Tasting, Finest, Largest, Most Flavorful Donald Trump Video Yet, ‘Believe Me’

Sowell: Trump a 'Dangerous Man To Have In The White House

Sabato: Trump Shifts Six Senate Races Toward Democrats

Donald Trump has never had any idea what he was talking about. We only just noticed.
No, I didn't "just notice." ~Bob

Exclusive: Inside The $125 Million Donald Trump Sexual Assault Lawsuit

5 Signs Donald Trump IS The Establishment...From The Last 24 Hours Alone

Trump, Boehner hit the links

Trump’s ‘woman’s card’ comment escalates the campaign’s gender wars
Excerpt: Donald Trump’s accusation that Hillary Clinton is playing the “woman’s card” and would be a failed candidate if she were a man touched off a contentious debate about gender politics and sexism that seems likely to define the presidential election as much as any issue. While celebrating sweeping victories in five Republican primaries Tuesday night, Trump mocked the qualifications of the Democratic front-runner, saying she would be a bad president who lacks “strength.” The remarks seemed a preview of a general-election strategy to use Clinton’s potential to be the first female president against her.

Recidivism Watch: Trump’s eight repeated falsehoods in 16 hours

How the GOP’s ‘rigged’ system actually helps Trump

WaPo Editorial: Trump’s incoherent, inconsistent, incomprehensible foreign policy
Excerpt: WHAT WAS supposed to be a rare set-piece speech by Donald Trump on foreign policy Wednesday resembled a pastiche of his off-the-cuff postulations from the campaign trail, cobbled together under the slogan “America First.” Like the previous rhetoric, his proposals were loose, frequently contradictory and embedded in a bucket of falsehoods. Of these, the biggest was Mr. Trump’s claim that he could somehow reverse the historical tides that have created a globalized economy and remedy the complex security challenges of the 21st century with a simple “plan for victory with a capital V.” It’s not clear whether Mr. Trump intended to associate himself with the original America Firsters, who campaigned to prevent U.S. entry into World War II and, in some cases, played down Nazi crimes and spun anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. 

Let’s name names: Who has stood up to Trump?
Excerpt: The witty Tim Miller, communications director for the Our Principles PAC, tweets, “If your 2020 litmus test is: Did you stand up [for] conservative values in face of an orange demagogic GOP takeover, the field is rather small.” That is an interesting dividing line. Who would that leave? And who would make the grade? (For this purpose, I leave out the long list of “journalists” who sold their souls to root for Donald Trump and the ones in the conservative punditocracy who did not. That eye-opening division deserves its own discussion.) First, we can take off the prospective 2020 list (and leave out the successor to the Republican Party in the wake of Donald Trump) those who actively enabled Trump. The worst of the worst in this regard are New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.).

The world according to Trump. By Charles Krauthammer
Excerpt: More incoherent still is Trump’s insistence on being unpredictable. An asset perhaps in real estate deals, but in a Hobbesian world American allies rely on American consistency, often as a matter of life or death. Yet Trump excoriated the Obama-Clinton foreign policy for losing the trust of our allies precisely because of its capriciousness. The tilt toward Iran. The red line in Syria. Canceling the Eastern European missile defense. Abandoning Hosni Mubarak. Trump’s scripted, telepromptered speech was intended to finally clarify his foreign policy. It produced instead a jumble. The basic principle seems to be this: Continue the inexorable Obama-Clinton retreat, though for reasons of national self-interest, rather than of national self-doubt. And except when, with studied inconsistency, he decides otherwise.

Donald Trump denies rape of teenage girl at 'sex party with convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein'
No wonder Bill Clinton has been Trump's buddy for so long. ~Bob

Donald Trump Will Be the Republican Nominee for President. Don’t Ever Get Used to It.
Excerpt: No, what makes Donald Trump something new in American political life is that he’s all of these things at once: a racist, nativist demagogue with few ties to government, no experience in public office, no service in the armed forces, and little to no knowledge of anything involving governance, from policy to basic questions like, “What is the Supreme Court, and what does it do?” If you conjured all the ignorance and arrogance in America and gave it human form, you would have Donald Trump, give or take a spray tan.

The ADL vs. Trump. By Jennifer Rubin
Excerpt: The folks over at the Anti-Defamation League, unlike some pundits, actually listened to the content of Donald Trump’s speech in Washington on Wednesday. They were rightfully appalled and put out a statement, which “urged presidential candidate Donald Trump to reconsider his use of the phrase ‘America First’ as a slogan describing his approach to foreign affairs, citing its anti-Semitic use in the months before Pearl Harbor by a group of prominent Americans seeking to keep the nation out of World War II.”

Donald Trump’s chances against Hillary Clinton look far worse than Ted Cruz’s
Uses the Real Clear Politics Polls. ~Bob

I'm One: Republicans who vow to never back Trump
Excerpt: A number of prominent Republicans are vowing to never back Donald Trump even as he closes in on the GOP presidential nomination.
The "Never Trump" ranks include lawmakers, party operatives, pundits and GOP donors — and the movement even sparked a popular hashtag on social media.
They are convinced Trump as standard-bearer would lead the GOP to a devastating defeat in November, costing the party the Senate and potentially the House.

‘There’s nobody left’: Evangelicals feel abandoned by GOP after Trump’s ascent
Excerpt: Pastor Gary Fuller planned a Sunday service focused on involving Christians in the political process and featuring a speech by the pastor father of Sen. Ted Cruz. But after a week in which Cruz abruptly dropped out of the race, his father scrapped his appearance here and Donald Trump became the Republican Party’s standard-bearer, a dismayed Fuller kept the political portion short. “Vote according to your convictions,” Fuller told congregants at Gentle Shepherd Baptist Church who will cast ballots in Nebraska’s presidential primary Tuesday. “What you believe is the right thing to vote for, according to the Scriptures.” He told congregants that the church can’t and won’t promote one candidate over another. But Fuller has a hard time stomaching Trump as the Republican nominee and plans to vote for Cruz on Tuesday, even though the senator has dropped out of the race.

Trump: I Have Principles, Don't Need Conservatives to Support Me
Excerpt: The presumptive GOP nominee said that he can win without the backing of the full party by drawing Democratic voters, specifically supporters of Bernie Sanders. (Trump has principles? Name one. ~Bob)

Trump, who once opposed minimum-wage hike, says he would ‘like to see an increase’

Few stand in Trump’s way as he piles up the Four-Pinocchio whoppers
Excerpt: Still, most politicians will drop a talking point if it gets labeled with Four Pinocchios by The Fact Checker or “Pants on Fire” by PolitiFact. No one wants to be tagged as a liar or misinformed, and we have found most politicians are interested in getting the facts straight. So the claim might be uttered once or twice, but then it gets quietly dropped or altered. But the news media now faces the challenge of Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee for president. Trump makes Four-Pinocchio statements over and over again, even though fact checkers have demonstrated them to be false. He appears to care little about the facts; his staff does not even bother to respond to fact-checking inquiries.

Interesting take on: Ben Sasse Open Letter: Doesn't the Country Deserve Better Than These Two Terrible Candidates?
Excerpt: The usual math on this is that a third party run would be disastrous and would deliver the election to Hillary. Many #NeverTrumpers, and I'm edging into that group myself, find this a weak objection in this case: Trump himself will inevitably be demolished, so there's no threat of "throwing the election." It already has been thrown.
Second, Trump represents a very stupid and dangerous form of authoritarianism. Everything with him is force and bullying. Riots at the convention if he doesn't get his way. His online trolls actively threatening people's physical safety. I don't get it -- I'm supposed to be outraged by Lois Lerner, yet amused by this? Why? Because this will only be visited upon my enemies? First, that's not principled, that's just stupid tribalism,, and second, it's not true -- the gentle persuasions of authoritarian You Will Be Made to Buckle are already being visited on us, and by "us," I mean non-Democrats. I personally didn't oppose the thuggishness of the left just to be bullied by a new thuggishness of the alt-right. (Bingo. The Republican party is shifting from an institution ostensibly devoted to liming government power over citizens to one that is fine with expanding it as long as it’s focused in the right direction. --Jim Geraghty, Morning Jolt)

No, Mr. Trump, NAFTA Was Not a ‘Bad Deal’
Excerpt: First, the U.S. has added 31 million payroll jobs since 1994, or 29 million workers (depending on which methodology one uses). Second, average hourly earnings, adjusting for inflation, are 43 percent higher than in 1994. Third, U.S. manufacturing output has reached record highs, and part of the reason is that so much global trade consists of intermediate goods in fantastically efficient supply chains. You may have read about Trump’s complaint that China is “killing us” because of bad trade deals, but he also complains about Japan, one of our closest allies. Trump seems unaware that the U.S. has no trade deals at all with China; nor does he seem to know that the Trans Pacific Partnership does not include China. Trump is even questioning trade with our friends in Canada, which is like complaining about jobs being “lost” to Oregon. Today, America imports about $10 billion worth of goods from Japan every month, while exporting $5 billion, yielding a 2-to-1 trade deficit in goods. So? As our patron saint, Adam Smith, wrote centuries ago, “Nothing can be more absurd than this whole doctrine of the balance of trade.” Has protectionism helped Tokyo? After decades of such trade imbalances, America has prospered while the Japanese economy has stagnated. Today, output per person is 20 percent higher in the U.S. than in Japan.

Lyin' Donald: 101 Of Trump's Greatest Lies

Trump’s impending nomination means it’s time for a third party
Excerpt: Admittedly, this may be a losing cause. But a losing cause is not necessarily a futile one. John Quincy Adams fighting slavery in the 1830s and 1840s and Wendell Willkie running on an internationalist platform in 1940 proved that. A Trump candidacy is a disgrace and has indeed already damaged us at home and abroad, but the longer-term question is larger than one demagogue, dangerous though he is. It is whether the cause of free, limited and constitutional government will have someone to speak for it and to represent it now and for decades to come.

Excerpt: So, let’s see how presumptive-nominee Donald Trump is doing. A new poll from the Republican firm Civitas finds Hillary Clinton leading Trump in North Carolina, 49 percent to 40 percent. A new poll from the station WSB in Atlanta finds Trump barely ahead of Clinton in Georgia, 42 percent to 41 percent.  Trump is ahead, 37 percent to 31 percent . . . among Miami-Dade County Cuban-Americans, traditionally one of the most heavily-Republican demographics in the state of Florida. Trump’s share of the vote is the lowest level of support among this group ever recorded. The ORC national poll commissioned by CNN finds Clinton ahead nationally, 54 percent to 41 percent. Other than Rasmussen, every pollster has Clinton ahead, usually by double digits or close to it, in every poll since the beginning of March.

The Art of the Con: the Trump U Fraud Case
Excerpt: As long as we are on the subject of “New York values”, let is consider the New York lawsuit against one Donald J. Trump and his “university” which alleges that Trump defrauded thousands of students who spent tens of thousands hoping they could benefit from his professed business acumen. The case has been woefully under-covered by a largely Trump-leaning media, but it could soon be as important to Trump as the FBI investigation of Hillary Clinton’s emails and server could be to the former First Lady.


Worth Reading: How the Clintons Get Away With It. The Clintons are protected from charges of corruption by their reputation for corruption. By  PEGGY NOONAN
Excerpt: I have read the Peter Schweizer book “Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich.” It is something. Because it is heavily researched and reported and soberly analyzed, it is a highly effective takedown. Because its tone is modest—Mr. Schweizer doesn’t pretend to more than he has, or take wild interpretive leaps—it is believable. By the end I was certain of two things. A formal investigation, from Congress or the Justice Department, is needed to determine if Hillary Clinton’s State Department functioned, at least to some degree and in some cases, as a pay-for-play operation and whether the Clinton Foundation has functioned, at least in part, as a kind of high-class philanthropic slush fund. (Google the title if you are blocked. ~Bob)

The year of the hated: Clinton and Trump, two intensely disliked candidates, begin their face-off
Excerpt: Excerpt: If the rise of Trump has no obvious precedent, neither does an election like this. Clinton, whose buoyant favorable ratings in the State Department convinced some Democrats that she could win easily, is now viewed as unfavorably as George W. Bush was in his close 2004 reelection bid. Trump is even less liked, with negative ratings among nonwhite voters not seen since the 1964 campaign of Barry Goldwater. “In the history of polling, we’ve basically never had a candidate viewed negatively by half of the electorate,” Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) wrote in a widely shared note that asked someone, anyone, to mount a third-party run. “There are dumpster fires in my town more popular than these two ‘leaders.’ ”

Romanian hacker Guccifer says he breached Clinton's private email server
Excerpt:" The infamous Romanian hacker known as “Guccifer,” speaking exclusively with Fox News, claims he easily – and repeatedly – breached former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s personal email server in early 2013. 

Other Political News

Worth Reading: Entitlement reform, RIP
Excerpt: Seventy-five percent of planned federal spending between now and the end of the next two presidential terms is mandatory: Social Security, Medicare and other entitlement programs, plus interest on the national debt, according to Congressional Budget Office forecasts. That money is going out the door no matter who’s president. (Nobody’s going to deal with this until the crisis is right at our door. And the American people chose to ignore the problem, again and again, year after year. --Jim Geraghty)

Worth Reading: Random Thoughts. By Dr. Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: One of the problems with being a pessimist is that you can never celebrate when you are proven right. If what you want from politicians are quick and easy answers, someone is sure to supply them, regardless of which party you follow. History can tell you where quick and easy answers lead. But, if you don't want to bother reading history, you can just wait and relive its catastrophes.

The real cost of bailing out Puerto Rico. By Joseph Lawler
Excerpt: A preview of this month's scramble to save Puerto Rico from a debt catastrophe played out in the fall between two familiar adversaries in a Senate office hearing room.
On the witness side of the dais was Antonio Weiss, the Treasury counselor dispatched to warn the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee that Puerto Rico faced an "economic and fiscal crisis" that, unless Congress intervened, could become a "humanitarian crisis as well." Facing Weiss was Elizabeth Warren, the Massachusetts senator and liberal populist who, just months earlier, had blocked him from Senate confirmation to the No. 3 post in the Treasury. Warren had seized on Weiss' background as an investment banker at Lazard to paint him as the candidate of Wall Street influence, banking excess and bailouts, successfully rallying liberal opposition to his nomination. (The data supplied in the charts of state indebtedness are stunning, it really makes it clear how bad things are for their future.  The big surprise to me is that while California is up there on debt, two other states, IL and CT, are actually much worse off when you look at the debts relative to their resources.  But both states have been run by powerful Democrat forces for decades now, just spending away like crazy, while tax bases have been stagnant or declined and people have been leaving.  The saying goes "if something can't go on indefinitely, then it won't", and here are the examples, plain to see. And federal bailouts that in effect force everyone who's had no part in this pay for the mistakes others have made over long periods are NOT the solution.  The solution sometimes is let things go downhill until the voters put people in office who will manage responsibly.  In a democracy, you get the government you deserve, and if the voters have consistently put fools and corrupt people in charge, then they need to see the penalties first hand, and next election look for better leaders.  (We can see this trying to take place in Venezuela, where the socialist maniacs have destroyed the economy and finally, after years of disaster,  there is a rising tide of opposition demanding a new government.) --Del)

South Africa's Q1 unemployment highest on record: statistics head

Clueless: Obama: We're Living in 'Most Peaceful' Era in Human History
Here is a current article about what Mr. Obama has been proclaiming in Europe.  And remember, he is actually serious!  Apparently he has been given the deepest rose-colored glasses in history. --Del. If Islamic Terrorists burst into the White House and killed his family--and they would if they could--he would go on TV to warn against a backlash against Muslims. ~Bob

WaPo Fact Checker: Emily’s List’s sleazy attack ad in the Pennsylvania Senate race. By Glenn Kessler 
Excerpt: In fact, Obama made specific policy recommendations derived from the Bowles-Simpson report. One can only imagine the attack ad Emily’s List would have run if Obama were attempting to win a Senate nod against a woman. Readers always should be wary when political attack ads use the word “truth” and cite fact checkers. The television stations who refused to pull this ad should be ashamed of themselves — as should Emily’s List. This is simply a sleazy way to win a campaign. Four Pinocchios. (It's not enough to be liberal--you must have the right plumbing. ~Bob)

20 Quotes From Ancient Greek Philosophers That Liberals Still Don’t Understand

Conservative icon Justice David Prosser to leave the (Wisconsin) Supreme Court. By M.D. Kittle 

Worth Reading: World War II Amnesia. By Victor Davis Hanson
Excerpt: Seventy-seven years ago, Nazi Germany invaded Poland, triggering a declaration of war by Great Britain and its Empire and France. After Hitler’s serial aggressions in the Rhineland, the Anschluss with Austria, the Munich Agreement, and the carving up of Czechoslovakia, no one believed that a formal war over Poland would lead to anything greater than yet another German border grab. The invasion of Poland would likely be followed by loud but empty threats for Hitler to stop, and a phony war of inaction and grumbling. But after dismembering Poland, and dividing its spoils with the Soviet Union, Hitler unexpectedly absorbed Denmark and Norway the next spring. Then in May 1940, he successfully invaded Belgium, France, Holland, and Luxembourg. He tried to bomb Britain into submission. The conflict eventually spread to the Mediterranean and became truly a “world war” in 1941 with the surprise Axis attacks on the Soviet Union and the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor. Sixty million people would perish in the six years of war, more than any man-caused or natural calamity in history—and World War II would become one of the few conflicts in history in which the losers suffered far fewer fatalities than did the winners. Yet the lessons of World War II endure and had, until recently, guided our foreign policy successfully.

Firearms in Canada

Huffington Post killed story pitch critical of Uber
Excerpt: Uber yesterday announced that Huffington Post Editor in Chief Arianna Huffington would be joining its board of directors, a move that put the site’s reporters in an instant bind. To fight the notion that Huffington Post would somehow take it easy on Uber because of these ties, Huffington’s folks noted that her news operation has churned out stories on Uber while the announcement was “impending,” as spokeswoman Lena Auerbuch put it. There was an omission, however. On April 6, reporter Sarah Digiulio sent a note to some colleagues apprising them of this story in the New York Times: “Uber Driver Napped as His Passenger Led Highway Chase, Police Say.”

Army retains decorated Green Beret it planned to kick out over confronting Afghan child rapist

Democratic Socialism in Action: Leader Of Conservative Opposition In Venezuela Ends Up Dead

Religion of Peace News

UK: Devout Muslim gets 16 years for rape of schoolgirls

Dick Smith Foods statement on Halal: Muslim Branding on Our Food
Excerpt: We have received a number of letters from people asking if we will be putting the Muslim Halal logo on our food.  To acquire Halal certification, payment is required to the endorsing body and involves a number of site inspections of both our growers and processors in order to ensure that our practices comply with the conditions of Halal certification.  It is important to note that this does not reflect the quality of the food being processed or sold – it only means that the products are approved as being prepared in accordance with the traditions of the Muslim faith. We are aware of an increasing number of large companies both in Australia and overseas, such as Kraft and Cadbury, who have obtained accreditation to use the Halal logo.  We don’t believe they have done this because of any religious commitment but rather for purely commercial reasons.  Perhaps these large organisations can afford to do this.  While we have a choice however, we would prefer to avoid unnecessarily increasing the cost of our products in order to pay for Halal accreditation when this money would be better spent continuing to support important charitable causes where assistance is greatly needed. We point out that we have never been asked to put a Christian symbol (or any other religious symbol) on our food requiring that we send money to a Christian organisation for the right to do so. (The Dick Smith company is a major food supplier in Australia, whose profits all go to charity.  Recently the issued a statement, above, about something that's been going on in Australia, which is pretty shocking and incredibly stupid.  Basically, extortion by self-appointed Muslim authorities on halal accreditation charging food companies serious bucks to put an emblem on their food package, after swearing they are in fact doing whatever the halal rules require.  (For animal slaughter, they must have their throats slit.) The statement is reproduced above, but the link will take you to a detailed article on the subject. Yet another example of the PC people giving in to stupid things that cost the customer more and only benefit.... we can't be sure whom. --Del)

The Inherent Fallacy of Believing We Can Beat the Islamic State Without U.S. Ground Troops. No one — not Obama, Clinton, Trump, or Cruz — will dare to admit the obvious: We’re going to need to put boots on the ground in Iraq and Syria. By Kori Schake
Excerpt: On Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama authorized the deployment of 217 more troops to Iraq, as part of the fight against the Islamic State. As Secretary of Defense Ash Carter explained: “This will put Americans closer to the action.” Washington will also send Apache helicopters to Iraqi forces and pay $415 million in salaries for Kurdish troops and other “military needs” in the runup to retaking Mosul. If you think this counts as getting tough in the fight against radical jihadis who have unsettled the Middle East and brought violence to the heart of Europe, you’re deluding yourself. Obama’s strategy for fighting the Islamic State is half-measures, at best: contributing U.S. military force at the margins of efforts by those most directly affected with loss of territory. The president prides himself on a minimalist approach, doing just about as much for Iraqi forces or the Syrian rebels as they could do for themselves. It amounts to an argument that he is preventing the moral hazard of other countries relying on the United States for their security. But that approach treats as costless two very important elements in fighting the Islamic State: confidence and time. ( Wow, someone who gets it!  I hate the idea of sending US troops over there in force again, yet the truth is that if it's set up right and done right, ISIS can be wiped out without horrendous casualties on our side, the whole idea of the Caliphate gets trashed, and things will calm down a lot over there.  And we'll at least regain some respect as opposed to the open contempt we have now. --Del)

UK: Islamic State security guard wished friends “Happy 911.” By Robert Spencer,
Excerpt: This is the Britain that David Cameron and Theresa May wanted. This is the Britain they have. They have hounded and persecuted counter-jihadis, while pandering to and appeasing the likes of Mohammed Ameen. So they have made their bed, and they won’t be able to escape lying in it.

Saudi family left destitute after having university funding cut off blame refusal to co-operate over building of a mosque
Excerpt: Amri, 36, said: “When I was a child, BBC Arabic was the only radio station talking about democracy and freedom. I lived in a very strict religious family where everything was forbidden but I bought a radio and I would hide it under my pillow and listen at night. The UK was my dream. “Wahhabism does not want people to think for themselves. Saudi Arabia does not want people to think for themselves. It is against women, it is against gay people, it talks of killing. Saudi Arabia wants to spread this around the world. I cannot be a part of it.”

Of Interest

Eighth-grader’s $2 bill sparks police investigation in Houston
Excerpt: A Houston eighth-grader was reportedly investigated for forgery after she tried to use a $2 bill to pay for lunch at school. Danesiah Neal, a student at Fort Bend Independent School District’s Christa McAuliffe Middle School, said she was trying to buy some chicken nuggets with the $2 bill her grandmother gave her, but school officials confiscated the bill and said it was fake, a local ABC News affiliate reported.

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