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A Photo for Friday

Well, weekly hasn’t taken yet, but here’s another: 4th of July, 2015 (Montgomery, AL) More fireworks here. At some point I might get a rhythm going…

The Most Important Trump Number

us-politics

Remember how I have noted (twice, in fact) that one of the factors one has to consider in terms of Trump’s poll numbers is the current fragmentation of the field?  In other words, leading a field of more than a dozen, even with numbers in the mid-20s raising the question of whether he can garner […]

Gold Prices

money-investing

But all those nice men on the tee-vee and radio told me that gold was where I should be putting my money.  Oh dear. (That and all the Austrian economists and their predictions of hyper-inflated doom). Well:

On Munich Analogies

us-politics

Of course, the Iran deal has unleashed the ever popular deployment of the Munich analogy.  Samuel Kleiner and Tom Zoellner critique the formulation and give us a run-down of its relevance over the decades in an LAT piece for earlier in the week:  Republicans’ ‘Munich’ fallacy. The analogy is, of course, tired and pointless and yet it […]

Infrastructure Funding Blues

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The gas tax was last raised in 1993.

An Important Reminder about Polling

polling-stick-figures-1

We are still a ways from actual voting–this needs to be remembered.

The Bland Arrest Video

law-scales-justice-flag

An authoritarian ego trip for all to see.

Today in “Asked and Answered” (Sowell on Iran Deal Edition)

Iran Nuclear Deal Congress

Any discussion of the Iran deal has to be about realistic alternatives, not fantasies.

The Challenge of Democracy

us-politics

Or, at least, a key challenge. Via the Monkey Cage:  No, we’re not arguing from the same facts. How can democracies make good decisions if citizens are misinformed? Widely shared misinformation hampers democracy because it makes it difficult for groups of people to take effective and appropriate action on shared civic problems. Indeed. I recommend […]

Another Troubling Police Encounter with a Black Motorist

Gavel And Scales Of Justice

A few days late, but a story worth noting if it has escaped notice.

More on Cosby

law-scales-justice-flag

Via the BBC: Bill Cosby ‘offered women money’ for silence after sex American comedian Bill Cosby admitted trying to pay women to keep quiet after having sex with them, according to testimony obtained by the New York Times. [...] After Ms Constand became upset and returned to her native Canada, Mr Cosby offered to pay […]

Smell-O-Vision 2015?

intellectual-invention

Via the NYT:  Scent Received, With a Tap of a Smartphone. A)  Who wants this? B)  The technology is inevitably going to lead to teenage boys texting farts to their friends.

Sunday Deadline for Greece

travel-suitcase

Via the BBC:   Greece debt crisis: Eurozone ‘gives Sunday debt deadline’ They had better get their act together (yes, I know) as their performance today was, well, underwhelming:  Greece turned up empty-handed to emergency bailout talks.

Fireworks Dumbitude

movie-popcorn-filmstrip

The older I get (and as I approach “you kids get off my lawn”-ness), the more I get frustrated by fireworks in the wild.  By that I mean:  I love a good fireworks display, but wish people would stop buying the durn things and setting them off days before (and days after) the 4th of […]

Will the Last Cosby Defender Turn off the Lights on the Way out…

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Via the BBC:  Bill Cosby admitted he gave woman drugs before sex In his 2005 testimony, Mr Cosby admitted that he obtained Quaaludes in the 1970s, with the intent of giving it to women he wanted to have sex with. The case was brought by Andrea Constand, a former employee of Temple University – the […]

Soccer Ratings Win for World Cup Champs

movie-popcorn-filmstrip

Via NPR:  U.S. Women Shatter TV Ratings Record For Soccer With World Cup Win While some 17 million American viewers tuned in to the 7 p.m. ET start of Sunday’s game, that number quickly grew to 21.86 million an hour later — and reached 22.86 million at 8:30 p.m. ET, according to preliminary data from […]

Greek Priorities

travel-suitcase

Via Reuters:  Despite crisis, few Greeks ready to forgo coffee “Greeks are ready to cut anything else, but not their coffee. Customer traffic is stable,” said Kleanthis Kanellos, 34-year-old manager of the packed Old Flo cafe in a working class district of Athens. Well, one has to have one’s priorities straight (although their propensity toward […]

Tech 1776

intellectual-invention

Via Shelly Palmer:  7 Hottest Tech Trends in 1776

Trump and the Polls

Trump Announcement

He’s second in national polls!

Friday Foto

A new feature from me:  a weekly photo. This week:  Savannah Sunset: More from Savannah, GA here.

Metro Photos

And now for a deviation from battle flags and SCOTUS rulings. I was recently in DC for a few days and here are some photos I took in DC Metro stations. I always find the combination of architecture, geometry, and lighting to provide for some interesting photographic opportunities.

Moore Prepares for Battle

Moore

In week a that has seen discussion of lost causes, the Chief Justice of the Alabama Surpreme Court appears poised to fight one last battle.

On Constitutional Language

constitution-preamble-quill-pen

Wherein I take the view that as our understanding of language changes, so too does our application of the Constiution.

Pro-Battle Flag Rally in Montgomery

us-politics

Via WSFA:   Rally held at Alabama Capitol to protest removal of Confederate flags According to the Sons of the Confederacy, the rally is to send a message that the Confederate flag is about heritage, not hate. I am really tired of that formulation.  What specific heritage?  Fighting a war to preserve slavery?  A symbol […]

Roberts Blackmail Plot!

law-scales-justice-flag

Wayne Root, former Libertarian VP candidate asked a provocative question:  Was Supreme Court Justice John Roberts Blackmailed? His concern:  Roberts’ vote in the PPACA cases. His evidence? Doubt me? On the same day that Justice Roberts and the Supremes upheld Obamacare – again – the key IRS watchdog reported to Congress that the IRS purposely […]

Silly Legislative Tricks

us-politics

Via The Hill:  House bill would force the Supreme Court to enroll in ObamaCare Rep. Brian Babin (R-Texas) said that his SCOTUScare Act would make all nine justices and their employees join the national healthcare law’s exchanges. [...] Babin’s potential legislation would only let the federal government provide healthcare to the Supreme Court and its […]

Google Comes to Bama

While the state continues to deal with its past, the future looms as well. Via CNBC:  Google makes a big bet on… Alabama? The Internet and technology giant plans to build a new data center in the state at the site of a former coal-fired power plant. In a blog post Wednesday, Google said the […]

Confederate Flags Removed from Alabama Capitol Grounds

us-politics

Via WSFA:   Confederate flags removed from Alabama Capitol grounds Alabama Governor Robert Bentley ordered the removal of all Confederate flags from the Confederate Memorial Monument that stands on the grounds of the state Capitol, making him the first Southern governor to completely remove the flag from the state capitol. The four flags (three national flags […]

The Stories we Tell Ourselves (Battle Flag Edition)

USA CSA Map

An important tenet of the internet is “don’t read the comments.” Well, I have violated that rule of late–which means more musings on the symbols of the CSA.

Because it’s Fun to Stay at the YMCA When you’re in the Navy…

As I contemplate weightier subjects that I am having a hard time writing about at the moment, I give you Vladimir Putin as every member of the Village People.

In Case you Want to See What Hyperinflation Looks Like…

travel-suitcase

…take a look over at the BBC:  Zimbabwe dollars phased out. Zimbabwe is phasing out its local currency, the central bank says, formalising a multi-currency system introduced during hyper-inflation. Foreign currencies like the US dollar and South African rand have been used for most transactions since 2009. Local dollars are not used except high-denomination notes […]

The Warrior v. the Guardian

law-scales-justice-flag

Some interesting insight on the McKinney pool party confrontation:  A Former Cop On What Went Wrong In McKinney The two officers in this brief video represent two different policing styles, two different mindsets that officers use as they interact with civilians: the Guardian and the Warrior. As a former police officer and current policing scholar, […]

Comparative Military Bases

military-soldier-sunset

This series of maps is worth a look:  What we can learn by looking at where world powers have military bases. Here are two of them, the US and China: While such maps do not tell all one might need to know they do undercut two arguments often made in the popular press. First, it […]

And the Hyperbole Prize Goes to…

academic-book-glasses

…Rod Dreher: A number of you have sent me the Edward Schlosser essay on Vox, headlined, “I’m a Liberal Professor, And My Liberal Students Terrify Me”. It cannot fail to bring to mind the horrors of China’s Cultural Revolution, in which Mao turned the fervor and idealism of students on their professors, creating generational warfare […]

No, College Professors are Not Afraid to Teach Millennials

academic-book-glasses

One more on this topic.

Coburn Hearts Rubio…

us-politics

..the other GOP contenders, not so much:  Tom Coburn On 2016: Cruz And Walker Not Ready For Primetime, America Won’t Elect Another Bush. The piece has the candidate-by-candidate run-down.

What is Wrong with People? (GOA Edition)

us-politics

Larry Pratt of the Gun Owners of America: “The Second Amendment was designed for people just like the President and his administration,” Pratt told radio host Roger Fredinburg. “And yes, if the New York Times and the Rolling Stone, and whoever else wants to have a hissy fit, yes, our guns are in our hands […]

The Rich Get Richer (High Ed Edition)

academic-book-glasses

Via Inside Higher Ed:  Does Harvard Need Your Money? It didn’t take long for the criticisms to begin rolling in after Harvard University announced a $400 million donation to its engineering college. The gift was proudly touted by the university as its largest-ever gift, and a significant step toward reaching the towering $6.5 billion fund-raising goal […]

Least Shocking Line of the Day

us-politics

“[H]is campaign has been marked by signs of dysfunction and amateurism.” (From a WaPo piece on Ben Carson’s campaign woes).  

How Many College Students are There in the US?

academic-book-glasses

Answer:   a lot. For reasons unrelated to my post yesterday I had cause to look up global enrollment figured for US colleges and universities nationwide.  Here are the numbers from National Student Clearinghouse Research Center:   There are reasons that I find it problematic, therefore, to take basically one incident (Kipnis) or even a handful […]

Summing up the Proper Reaction to the Scare over the PC Wave in Academia

academic-book-glasses

Stanford Professor Keith Humphreys writing at The Reality-Based Community: What we really know from the P.C. anecdotes that are being published is that at least some academics are feeling threatened and silenced. But we don’t know that this is happening any more now than at any other time in history, nor that it’s truly a […]

You Can’t Yell “You Did it Baby” at a Crowded Commencement (?)

academic-book-glasses

It is an occupational hazard that I have been to far more commencement ceremonies than most people could ever dream of (or have nightmares about) attending.   At every one I have attended it has been asked of the audience that they hold their applause.  At every one I have attended, this request is ignored by […]

Fear and Paranoia in Academia

College Degree

I have been reading, mostly in passing, a number of pieces about an alleged new climate on college campuses in which students are raising significant complaints due to difficult or emotionally sensitive material. The latest example did not impress me.

A Good Run-down of the Hastert Situation

law-scales-justice-flag

In terms of known facts (and some normative judgment I share–on the banking rules and Hastert’s finances), this a pretty good summary (via The Federalist):  The 4 Worst Things About Dennis Hastert’s Indictment. The conclusion is pretty succinct: Something $3.5-million-worth of bad happened in Hastert’s past, someone was paid money to keep quiet, federal criminalization of […]

In Case Anyone was Wondering…

I am not dead, have not quit blogging, and James did not banish me. I know I am not the prolific blogger that I once was and that I do disappear from time time, but I am pretty sure my recent absence is one of my longest. Despite the fact that this is supposed to […]

John Oliver Interview

Jorge Ramos interviews John Oliver:  

Lone Star Lunacy

Texas Flag

And some thoughts on how a small number of voters can influence major office-holder behavior.

Scalia Wants Those Kids off his Lawn

us-politics

Or, at least, that was my basic reaction to this from the Daily Mail:   Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia believes society is eroding because women use the ‘F-word’ and thinks Facebook is ‘strange’.

Chart: Deaths from Police Shootings

travel-suitcase

I do not have a lot to say about the following at the moment, but it is still worth a look (via The Economist):   Yes, one comparative stat is not sufficient to tell the whole story (as was true when I posted on the death penalty and the US in comparative perspective).  I will […]

Headline of the Day (UK Elections Edition)

travel-suitcase

Via The Telegraph:  Student loses trousers while taking selfie with Nick Clegg. Video at the link.

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