Monthly Archives: June 2015

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Happy Hour Links

We’re purging mascots named ‘Rebel’ now.

Lol. He’s lying (at least he better be) and this is one of the few times I find his lies acceptable.

Five former Obama foreign policy hands publish letter begging him not to go through with this horrible Iran deal.

“Experts say Malware used by the Yemen Cyber Army has shown up in previous cyber attacks, all led by Iran.” Oh what a shock.

Philip Larkin will soon be honored with a flagstone at Poets’ Corner in Westminster Abbey.

Thomas Hardy’s original manuscript for Tess of the D’Urbervilles fell afoul of the morality police in strange ways.

As I told you two weeks ago...

It was already being described as the worst hack of the U.S. government in history. And it just got much worse. A senior U.S. official has confirmed that foreign hackers compromised the intimate personal details of an untold number of government workers. Likely included in the hackers’ haul: information about workers’ sexual partners, drug and alcohol abuse, debts, gambling compulsions, marital troubles, and any criminal activity.

Those details, which are now presumed to be in the hands of Chinese spies, are found in the so-called “adjudication information” that U.S. investigators compile on government employees and contractors who are applying for security clearances. The exposure suggests that the massive computer breach at the Office of Personnel Management is more significant and potentially damaging to national security than officials have previously said. Three former U.S. intelligence officials told The Daily Beast that the adjudication information would effectively provide dossiers on current and former government employees, as well as contractors. It gives foreign intelligence agencies a roadmap for finding people with access to the government’s most highly classified secrets.

They just stole the most personal information on every federal employee and screwed our espionage for decades, but as long as they’re helping us out with the fucking ocean, then all is well. Jesus Christ, this is the most unserious administration ever.

Treasury IG: the Lois Lerner backups were deleted accidentally a month after the originals were discovered to be lost. Who’s dumb enough to believe this? Any takers?

More Americans have been murdered in Chicago in the last 15 years than have died in Iraq and Afghanistan combined. If only they’d stop flying that goddamn Confederate flag.

Loud mouthed American dude who thinks he’s a lady makes Cambridge change its centuries-old dining hall rules because we can’t let anything traditional or normal remain.

We are so screwed.

Suspected Chinese hackers breached FBI agents’ personnel files as part of the broader attack on the federal government that has laid bare millions of people’s data, Newsweek reported. Putting FBI agents’ data at risk could have national security implications; many investigate domestic terrorist plots and foreign spies.

So very screwed.

Login credentials for websites linked to nearly 50 government agencies have been found scattered across the Internet, according to a new report from Recorded Future. The credentials — usually consisting of a government email account linked to a password — showed up on numerous public so-called paste sites, such as Pastebin, according to the findings from the threat intelligence company. The company said those sites tend to be a dumping ground for passwords acquired through various cyber attacks. More worrisome, according to the report, is that some of the government agencies did not require two-factor verification, which would make the credentials much more valuable.

Oh FFS. Apple removes all Civil War games because of Confederate flag. Even the most anti-Confederate, pro-censorship Lefties think this is dumb, right? Please tell me you do.

This is a lawless administration, Part Infinity:

A top official at a controversial U.S. export finance agency deleted text messages sent within days of the 2014 midterm elections after a watchdog group filed an open records request for the messages, the agency admitted recently. The watchdog group, Cause of Action, said the deletion amounts to “unlawful destruction of federal records” in a legal complaint filed on Wednesday. The group filed a Freedom of Information Act request on Nov. 14 asking for text messages sent or received by top officials at the U.S. Export-Import Bank from Nov. 2 to Nov. 8. Ex-Im responded months later, saying in a May reply that messages from Scott Schloegel, the chief of staff and senior vice president, “were accidentally deleted on approximately January 1, 2015,” more than a month after Cause of Action filed its FOIA request.

Everything is terrible. Come now, SMOD. I beg you.

Who the hell cares?

Slate wants to remove the Confederate flag from museums now.

“Lois Lerner Hard Drive ‘Likely Crashed Due To An Impact'” Oh. Like throwing it against a wall…or smashing it with a hammer?

Of course

Sen. Bernie Sanders, the socialist from Vermont who is now challenging Hillary Clinton for the 2016 Democratic nomination, praised the Castro regime and Nicaragua’s Sandinista government upon returning from a trip to South America in 1985.

Confederate flags being purged from Gettysburg now.

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Music Monday

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Afternoon Links

Newly released emails tell us what anyone who was paying attention already knew: Gruber was an architect of Obamacare.

The Feds are always helpful at proving libertarians’ points.

Saudis set to build 16 nuclear reactors with Russian help. The Saudis also have the second most developed ballistic missile capability of any non-nuclear weapons state. Iran is first. Thanks Obama!

This is what I mean when I say we deserve this. WE DESERVE THIS. Damn you, Americans.

Uber but for killing babies

Every American should be sickened this administration has put us in this position.

The U.S. military and Iranian-backed Shiite militias are getting closer and closer in Iraq, even sharing a base, while Iran uses those militias to expand its influence in Iraq and fight alongside the Bashar al-Assad regime in neighboring Syria. Two senior administration officials confirmed to us that U.S. soldiers and Shiite militia groups are both using the Taqqadum military base in Anbar, the same Iraqi base where President Obama is sending an additional 450 U.S. military personnel to help train the local forces fighting against the Islamic State. Some of the Iran-backed Shiite militias at the base have killed American soldiers in the past.

Some inside the Obama administration fear that sharing the base puts U.S. soldiers at risk. The U.S. intelligence community has reported back to Washington that representatives of some of the more extreme militias have been spying on U.S. operations at Taqqadum, one senior administration official told us. That could be calamitous if the fragile relationship between the U.S. military and the Shiite militias comes apart and Iran-backed forces decide to again target U.S. troops.

Totally agree with this. There’s nothing wrong with Obama using the n-word in an abstract conversation about race. Fuck off, Outrage Police.

My god, Sotomayor is a disaster. In one of the few correctly decided cases before SCOTUS this term, Raisin Man and property rights scored a big victory.

If you’re in school until 30, drink $8 coffees, live in an expensive city, and only work freelance, yeah it’s hard to get wealthy. Idiot.

Man has Bad Thoughts (that are totally true), Rage Mob descends. REPENT YOUR THOUGHT CRIME, SINNER! Women’s sports are boring, which is why no one watches them. But we’re going to pretend otherwise because we’re a Pretending Society now.

Happy 10th birthday to the goddamn Kelo decision, one of the most destructive and appalling decisions of the modern era.

It’s been TWO WEEKS and the system is still down. Incredible. Just incredible.

“Whatever. ‘Jurassic World’ is sexist!!” -American feminists

Government waste we can all get behind.

While we’re all bleating about flags and street names and words, ISIS is drowning people in cages and Obama is reversing Jimmy Carter’s one achievement. Russia has reestablished preeminent military/econ relations with the world’s largest Arab state.

No thanks. I prefer them on Candice and Behati. I see plenty of fat people in swimsuits at the beach. By the way, I resent this notion that “real women” means overweight. Models and thin women are “real women” too. These ‘body-shaming’ tantrums usually just mean “I want people to lie to me and tell me I’m just as attractive as a supermodel.” Well, you’re not. And that’s ok. I’m not as attractive as Candice and Candice isn’t as smart as me. I can live with that trade-off. We all have our places in the world.

This new “negotiate with terrorists for hostages” policy is an unbelievably bad idea.

Alternate headline: US demands ISIS embed even more deeply into civilian populations.

Hang Snowden from a lamppost, Part Infinity.

This person is a history teacher at the University of Michigan. That’s right.

Ah, the Iran-Iraq War of ag subsidy suckers: Corn Socialists v Sugar Socialists. Excellent. Fight to the death!

Sounds like a porno I would rather die than watch.

We eavesdrop on them and they eavesdrop on us (and the French are much better at it than we are). All of this pretending otherwise, faux outrage is adorable.

Great

Identifying as things is good, unless you identify as an American.

Smart! What could go wrong?

Oh, so this administration lied. What a shock.

The Obama administration for more than a week avoided disclosing the severity of an intrusion into federal computers by defining it as two breaches but divulging just one, said people familiar with the matter. That approach has frustrated lawmakers as they probe the administration’s handling of one of the biggest-ever thefts of government records…The administration on June 4 disclosed the breach of personnel files—but not the security-clearance theft. That theft was disclosed a week later, even though investigators knew about it much earlier, people familiar with the situation said.

Reuters applauds John Kerry for his herculean effort to secure this shitty Iranian nuke sellout.

This is how James Foley’s mother found out her son had been beheaded. Unreal.

A week later, Diane got a call from a distraught reporter from the Associated Press. “She was sobbing,” Diane recalls. “She asked if I had seen the Internet.” The reporter wouldn’t elaborate. But within a short time the theatrically staged execution of Diane Foley’s son was all over the news. No one called her from the F.B.I. or the State Department. She contacted her primary F.B.I. agent, but he didn’t respond.

If only there were Confederate flags stamped on the asses of the hundreds of Beanie Babies I have. They’d finally actually be worth something.

Transcript of “Sexist Scientist” guy’s remarks show he was clearly joking, followed up by praising women in science. Good job, Internet Rage Mob. You’ve once again ruined someone’s life over nothing.

Plus contacts/references, you’re easily talking 100 million Americans effected by the OPM hack. This is the worst thing to happen to this country in a long time, but the media is largely ignoring it because Protect The Precious.

Lee has long been recognized as a good and honest man who was fighting for a bad cause, but he must be purged too now, apparently. Ridiculous. Lee was a brilliant commander and a reluctant Confederate who called slavery a “moral and political evil,” as well as the architect of much of the reconciliation between North and South, but fuck him because PC bullshit. Unreal.

Obama’s America, everybody. “Children are creating their own black markets to trade and sell salt due to First Lady Michelle Obama’s school lunch rules.”

I was joking the other day when I said they’d be calling for Gone With The Wind to go next, but I knew my joke would only last a day before turning into reality. 

Come now, SMOD.

It begins. Federal agency intervenes to ask vendors, politely, to halt sales of Confederate flags. We’re tiptoeing to the line here.

The National Park Service moved Wednesday to stop sales of the Confederate flag in federal parks, the Loop has learned. “The National Park Service is asking its cooperating associations, concessions, and partners to voluntarily withdraw sales in their stores of Confederate flags and other items, such as stickers, that depict the Confederate flag as a stand-alone feature,” Park Service spokeswoman Kathy Kupper e-mailed us after we’d inquired early in the day.

“I left a pizza boy and came back a pizza man.”

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If you only read one thing today…

…make it this, by Kevin Williamson. I’ll excerpt some of it below, but go read the whole thing.

If it seems to you that the Left has, collectively, lost its damned mind as the curtain rises on the last act of the Obama administration, you are not imagining things. Barack Obama has been extraordinarily successful in his desire to — what was that phrase? — fundamentally transform the country, but the metamorphosis is nonetheless a good deal less than his congregation wanted and expected. We may have gone from being up to our knees in welfare-statism to being up to our hips in it, and from having a bushel of banana-republic corruption and incompetence to having a bushel and a peck of it, but the United States of America remains, to the Left’s dismay, plainly recognizable as herself beneath the muck. Ergo, madness and rage. We have seen an extraordinary outburst of genuine extremism — and genuine authoritarianism — in the past several months, and it will no doubt grow more intense as we approach the constitutional dethroning of the mock messiah to whom our progressive friends literally sang hymns of praise and swore oaths of allegiance.

For the Left, it feels like time is running out. So it isn’t sufficient that same-sex marriages be legalized; bakers and florists must be locked in prison if they decline to participate in a gay couple’s ceremony. It isn’t sufficient that those wishing to undergo sex-change surgery be permitted to go their own way; the public must pay for it, and if Bruce Jenner is still “Bruce” to you, you must be driven from polite society…The hysterical shrieking about the fictitious rape epidemic on college campuses, the attempts to fan the unhappy events in Ferguson and Baltimore into a national racial conflagration, the silly and shallow “inequality” talk — these are signs of progressivism in decadence. So is the brouhaha over the Confederate flag…Of course the Confederate flag is a symbol of Southern racism. It is a good many other things, too, none of which was the cause of the massacre at Emanuel AME. It is strange and ironic that adherents of the Democratic party — which was, for about 140 years, not only the South’s but the world’s leading white-supremacist organization — should work themselves up over one flag, raised by their fellow partisans, at this late a date; but, well, welcome to the party. Yet Democratic concern about racist totems is selective: The Democrats are not going to change the name of their party, cancel the annual Jefferson-Jackson dinner, or stop naming things after Robert Byrd, senator and Exalted Cyclops of the Ku Klux Klan. Hillary Clinton is not going to be made to answer for her participation in a political campaign that featured Confederate-flag imagery.

The Confederate flag, and other rebel iconography, is a marker of Southern distinctiveness, which, like American distinctiveness, is inextricably bound up with the enslavement and oppression of black people. But only the South is irredeemable in the Left’s view, and it has been so only since about 1994, when it went Republican…When the South actually was a segregationist backwater that African-Americans were fleeing by the million — when Democrats were running the show — they were ho-hum. Today the South is an economic powerhouse, dominated by Republicans, and attracting new African-American residents by the thousands. And so the Left and its creature, the Democratic party, insist that Southern identity as such must be anathematized.

Young people who have heard all their lives that the Republican party and the conservative movement are for old white men — young people who may be not be quite old enough to remember Democrats’ boasting of their “double-Bubba” ticket in 1992, pairing the protégé of one Southern segregationist with the son of another — see before them Nikki Haley, Bobby Jindal, Susana Martinez, Carly Fiorina, Tim Scott, Mia Love, Marco Rubio, Ben Carson, Elise Stefanik…None belongs to the party that hoisted Dixie over the capitol in South Carolina…What’s going to happen between now and November 8 of next year will be a political campaign on one side of the aisle only. On the other side, it’s going to be something between a temper tantrum and a panic attack. That’s excellent news if you’re Ted Cruz, Scott Walker, Marco Rubio, or Carly Fiorina. It’s less good news if you live in Baltimore or Philadelphia.

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A word on this Confederate flag sideshow

First of all, screw the Confederate flag, aka the Democrat Battle Flag used when the Democrats made war on their own country in order to preserve the Democrats’ evil desire to keep enslaving human beings. I have no attachment to it, other than I think it’s an important historical artifact, and I’m glad Republican governor Nikki Haley is removing it from government grounds in South Carolina, after the Democrats put it there in 1962. (Though I think there’s an argument to be made that flying a Confederate flag over a Confederate war memorial or cemetery is simply about history, not hate). I think we can all agree it shouldn’t be flying anywhere on government property that belongs to and is paid for by the public, out of goodwill to our fellow Americans, many for whom it is a symbol of hatred and oppression. The Confederacy was formed (by Democrats) to defend the institution of slavery and the Confederate flag was brought back again as a political symbol by the defenders of segregation (Democrats). So, good for Haley. She did the right thing. As usual, Republicans have to clean up the Democrats’ mess.

However, attempting to purge the flag and Confederate history from the private sphere is an entirely different thing. And of course, when you give the Left an inch they take a mile. So we saw a moral panic from Amazon and eBay and Wal-Mart yesterday in which they pulled all Confederate-themed merchandise – including historical relics – out of their stores. Now, if a private company wants to take a moral stand on a product and not sell it, that is certainly their right. But A. They’re just doing this now because an Internet Rage Mob has been whipped up and B. They’re keeping plenty of other offensive stuff up for sale (Nazi stuff, Stalin stuff, Che stuff, Apartheid stuff, etc.). They’re being huge hypocrites. If you don’t want to sell it, fine, but at least be consistent. This Ebay/Amazon moral panic nonsense also A. Reinforces the fears of a lot of people that if you are reasonable and give one inch, you set off PC crusades and B. Creates a black market for this stuff because now it’s “forbidden,” which makes it “cool.” The exact opposite of what should happen. Good job, everyone. Congrats to collectors of Confederate collectibles, you’re about to become rich.

And now we’re seeing calls for statues to come down and for roads to be renamed. By all means, let’s have a discussion – not a knee jerk reaction – a discussion and maybe even some votes, on whether Jefferson Davis Highway should be a thing. (I vote to re-name it.) What about things named after Robert E. Lee, who we recognize as not a monster, but a good and honest man fighting for a bad cause? I’m not sure we want to go too far down this road. If we must scrub every racist from our national life, Internment Camp Roosevelt, Army Re-Segregator Wilson, KKK Grand Cyclops Byrd, Pro-Slavery Indian-Killing Jackson and a whole host of fellow Democrat icons are going to have to come off some things, including the money. The Fulbright Scholarship will have to be renamed. Someone will need to take a hammer to our federal buildings. As Mollie Hemingway notes (link and fuller excerpt below), statues, monuments, cemeteries, buildings, etc. – whether we personally like the art/the person depicted or not – have historical and educational value:

When I first moved to the D.C. area from Colorado, I had a bit of culture shock relative to the Confederate symbols on display here. I live not a mile from a cannon that marks where Confederate troops gathered to go off and fight. But rather than call for its removal, I’ve used it to learn history and teach my children about their commonwealth’s history. And I’ve used other monuments, cemeteries and buildings to teach my children about their history, including both the good and bad points.

Now Warner Bros. has stopped licensing Dukes of Hazzard. I can only assume Gone With The Wind is the next thing to go. CNN wonders whether we should dump the Jefferson monument because Jefferson owned slaves. STOP. EVERYONE CALM THE FUCK DOWN. First of all, this is a complete distraction from what happened last week. This racist loser did not gun these people down because Confederate flags exist in the world. Getting rid of said flag and memory holing the less savory parts of our history will not save anyone’s life and it will not eradicate racism from the world. Evil people with evil thoughts will always be with us, unfortunately. That’s just a fact of life. I understand people’s need to climb aboard the “Do Something!” train to make themselves feel better and try to make sense of something incomprehensible, but seriously, RELAX. We are apparently forgetting as a country how to oppose things without seeking their utter destruction, and that’s frightening in a free society. We must not seek to erase the hard parts. We must learn about them and learn from them. We must understand our nation in all its historical complexity: that includes difficult truths, uncomfortable realities, and of course the miracle that we have survived it all – in Lincoln’s immortal words, that these men did not die in vain and “government of the people, by the people, for the people” has not perished from this earth – and kept to the promise of the Declaration, that in this land “all men are created equal.” We are history’s great exception – a pluralistic constitutional republic – in a world where the rule is chaos, tyranny, tribalism and all too often, genocide.

The media has also pathetically attempted to use this as a political bludgeon against Republicans, while of course leaving the Darling Clintons – who have quite the history of supporting the Confederate flag when they were in Arkansas – out of it. But we all expect that by now. Democrats never have to answer for anything. Anyway, that’s my general stance on all of this. Now I’m going to turn it over to people at The Federalist and National Review who express what I’m thinking more eloquently than I can. First, from Mollie Hemingway:

With all due deference to hatred for a Confederate flag on a pole at the statehouse, this seems like an almost childlike attempt to miss the seriousness of the situation. It’s as if they expect us to say, “Congratulations! You oppose the flag of an army that was defeated 150 years ago. We’re all very proud of you, journalists!” This generation seems to excel at inventing controversies, weighing in on those invented controversies, and then patting itself on the back for being so courageous and open-minded.

Basically it’s just such a hysterical atmosphere at this point, that no one can conceive of a person who is against something but also willing to tolerate the expression of that thing. Can we be against Jeff Davis — and also against destroying art and monuments and history just because they involve Jeff Davis? Symbols are tremendously important, and state sponsorship of symbols is very much worth fighting about. But there are ways to express disapproval of art, monuments and aspects of history without taking the approach of, say, blowing up the Buddhas, to take one recent example. And how we manage these processes of disapproval truly is important for civil society. To quote Heinrich Heine, a man who definitely knew of what he spoke, “Where they have burned books, they will end in burning men.” Mobs aren’t actually the best judges of such processes, no matter how righteous they feel or certain of their cause.

Listen, it’s great that we’re aiming to be an anti-racist society. That’s very, very good! But it’s bad that we are slowly forgetting how to dislike something without seeking its utter destruction. Somehow we’ve abandoned the aesthetic of Abraham Lincoln for that of Mao Tse-Tung…I wouldn’t put Confederate kitsch up in my house, but mainstream media figure Claire Shipman and former Obama press secretary Jay Carney put up Communist kitsch in their house. There is something intriguing about how the elite left tolerates art celebrating those who killed 100 million people in the last century, but seeks the erasure of anything associated with the Confederacy…Confederate flag burning doesn’t actually do anything to stop racism. It’s a complete sideshow. And once we’ve blown up every confederate statue and smashed every tombstone with Confederate marks and erased all evidence of the Confederacy from our roads, we’ll still have the scourge of racism and every other sin with us.

Like Jonah Goldberg, I am sympathetic to the southerners who say the flag doesn’t mean now what it meant then.

The South was defeated. It was put under the heel of what it considered a hostile, if not foreign, government. I think history shows that Reconstruction didn’t go far enough or last long enough. But leaving the defeated southerners a symbol, while denying them all of the institutions and laws once associated with it, left open a path for redefining what the South stands for. As I write in my column tomorrow, that was part of Douglas MacArthur’s reasoning in allowing the Japanese to start using the imperial flag once again in 1949. He wanted to maintain enough continuity with the past to let them build a better future. That flag was once synonymous with Pearl Harbor, Bataan, and torture. In America and Japan it no longer is.

For millions of southerners, that flag simply does not mean being in service to evil or supporting slavery, and treating fellow Americans as if they hold such views or are just too ignorant to understand the truth strikes me as a thoroughly ungenerous and narrow-minded approach to politics. That’s why I liked Nikki Haley’s remarks yesterday so much. She acknowledged that good, decent, and knowledgeable people can disagree on this matter, even as she announced it was time for the flag to come down. Magnanimity in politics, Edmund Burke said, is often the truest wisdom.

If I lived in South Carolina, I wouldn’t fly a Confederate battle flag. I wouldn’t hang one at the state house either. I wouldn’t do it because the cause of southern pride just doesn’t mean as much to me as the cause of good manners does. Indeed, I wish this debate could focus more on manners: the chief mechanism by which diverse people in a diverse society get along. The flag is justifiably offensive to many, not least because of people like Dylann Roof who do not want its meaning to evolve and are willing to murder innocents towards that end. But treating every southerner with a Confederate flag on their bumper as if they support Roof’s ideology — or are too stupid to realize they do — is offensive as well. The flag shouldn’t fly on public lands on Jeffersonian grounds: “To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves and abhors, is sinful and tyrannical.” Beyond that, I think good manners should rule.

I’ve lived in every region of this country and I have now lived in the South for a few years. It is the most integrated, least racist place I’ve ever lived. I almost never see Confederate flags and when I’ve brought it up with Southerners, they always view it as a “Southern pride” thing or a “to remember my ancestors who died in the Civil War” thing, not at all a “we want to bring back slavery and institutionalized racism” thing. Southerner David French explains it well here. Victor Davis Hanson counters him with a good point here:

In the last half-century, Americans have increasingly tended to emphasize race and tribe in promoting “diversity,” rather than seeking to strengthen the more tenuous notion of unity with their fellow citizens. We have forgotten that human nature is fond of division and must work at setting aside superficial tribal affinities to unite on the basis of core values and ideas. Symbols, flags, organizations, and phrases that emphasize racial difference and ethnic pride are no longer just fossilized notions from the 1960s; they are growing fissures in the American mosaic that now threaten to split the country apart — fueling the suspicion of less liberal and more homogeneous nations that the great American experiment will finally unwind as expected. That would be a great tragedy, but a catastrophe entirely predictable if citizens seek symbolic solidarity with their tribe rather than in the common idea of just being American.

A lot of what you’re seeing from the Left is just their plain hatred of and failure to understand the South. Many of them are upset that there are no riots. As Jonah Goldberg writes, “The dignity of Charleston flies in the face of the Left’s uninformed, anti-South bigotry”:

Blogger Glenn Reynolds noted that when the South was solidly Democratic, we got Gone With the Wind nostalgia. Now that it is profoundly less racist, but also less useful to Democrats, it’s the enemy of all that is decent and good…White Northern liberals explain how the South is an irredeemable cesspool of hate, while ignoring the fact that blacks are abandoning the Northern blue states in huge numbers to move to the South. Demographer Joel Kotkin found that 13 of the 15 best cities in the country for African Americans to live in are now in the South. Over the last decade, millions of African Americans have been reversing the Great Migration of a century ago to live in Dixie. A big part of that story is economic, of course — the “blue state” model has failed generations of minorities — but it’s also cultural. Word has gotten out that while the flags may be around in some places, the Old Confederacy is gone…No, the South isn’t perfect; name a region that is. But it does have good manners, which is why it routinely acts with more dignity — and in Charleston, with more grace — than its critics to the north.

Fun fact to go with Jonah’s piece: South Carolina has the second lowest unemployment rate for blacks.

Ending with Robert Tracinski’s words of wisdom:

Remember that this story began with the people of Charleston and of South Carolina uniting together in support of the victims of a shooting. The flag controversy is an attempt to disrupt that sense of common humanity and pit us against one another. That is the motive we should reject. South Carolina should take down the Confederate flag, but it should do so not out of a motive of guilt or shame or resentment. It should do so out of a motive of good will for its fellow citizens, and out of love for the thing that makes us fellow citizens: the Union that prevailed in that horrible war.

We should remember that the goal of the winning side was not supposed to be about the subjugation of a hated enemy. It was about restoring their role as a necessary part of a free society. It was about the belief that America could not survive if it wasn’t united, and that the purpose of the Union was to provide for the liberty of its citizens. We should take this opportunity to join together in affirming what the great Daniel Webster named as the real goal of the war: “Liberty and Union, now and forever, one and inseparable.”

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Afternoon Links

David French on the Two Americas.

Part 4 in Dennis Prager’s series on the differences between Left and Right: The Left Rejects Painful Truths. “One might say that leftism appeals to those who wish to remain innocent children. Growing up and facing the fact that life is messy, difficult, and painful is increasingly a conservative point of view.”

LOL “Brian Williams will be the face of MSNBC.” The perfect punishment. The perfect place for a lying clown.

“Women’s World Cup: is artificial turf to blame for a lack of excitement?” No, like most women’s sports, it’s just boring.

Maybe you should alert the authorities when your roommate describes his mass murder plan. Friend of Roof says he planned to go on murder spree. The mall, College of Charleston weren’t soft enough targets so he hit the church (gun-free zone).

“There’s an ugly classism to complaints about sidewalk biking.” I just rolled my eyes so hard they’re stuck. Please help.

D.C. officials stole $110k from children’s program to fund Obama inaugural ball. Classy.

The fault lies with the evil racist thug who pulled the trigger. Anyone who seeks to place the blame elsewhere is a douche and is certainly unfit to be President.

You have got to be kidding me with this.

Shocking no one, it’s starting to look like most of the death and destruction in Waco came from the guns of cops, not outlaw bikers.

Awesome idea. Good job, Israel.

“US Wonders: Why Stolen Data on Federal Workers Not For Sale” Because that’s not why they want it. Next question.

“Yesterday we saw a rare moment of unanimity and accord, replete with a linguistic solidarity that is rare in the modern era. Apparently, some people just can’t take “yes” for an answer.”
Yes, thank you. This shooting has been universally condemned and attributed to racism, but I’ve seen far too many Lefties barking out ridiculous accusations at Fox and the GOP like Tourette’s victims. This evil man wanted a race war and apparently there are some on the Left who are determined to give it to him. Give it a rest for once. According to Roof’s manifesto, he also hates Jews, the American flag, veterans, America in general.

I’m an atheist, but good lord is this a good advertisement for Christianity. I could never be that strong or that graceful. Here’s how to donate to the church and victims of the Charleston shooting.

You’ve let him down again, America. You just don’t see how amazing he is. Why don’t you see it?

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Iran’s support for international terrorist groups remained undiminished last year and even expanded in some respects, the Obama administration said Friday, less than two weeks before the deadline for completing a nuclear deal that could provide Tehran with billions of dollars in relief from economic sanctions. The assessment offered a worrying sign of even worse terror-related violence to come after a year in which extremists in the Middle East, Africa and Asia committed 35 percent more terrorist acts, killed nearly twice as many people and almost tripled the number of kidnappings worldwide. Statistics released by the State Department on Friday also pointed to a tenfold surge in the most lethal kinds of attacks.

Drummer opens bar window to let a fart out, D.C. bureaucrats fine bar $500.

The Danish Left made immigration their issue, and just got their ass kicked.

Awesome. Good for him.

Ugh, stop shooting people’s dogs. Also, stop shooting children when you’re trying to shoot people’s dogs. Stop fucking shooting at everything unless it’s an actual threat.

OMG Need to book a trip to Argentina, ASAP.

This should be a national outrage. Networks have been vulnerable at the most sensitive agencies and the administration knew about it.

Charleston has handled this horrible shooting with grace, dignity, love, unity and courage, the complete opposite of the burning, looting hate mobs we’ve seen in Ferguson and Baltimore. It’s been a beautiful thing to watch. Stephen Miller writes:

The pattern is all too familiar. Shooter commits crime. President blames guns. Media blames Republicans. Media glorifies leftist protest. Protest turns to riot. Rinse. Repeat. Hope and Change, or else. For the past six or so years, the country feels like we’re on the verge of just getting our teeth kicked in. Like one spark lights a fuse. There was a feeling, propagated on social media and online, that perhaps this was that spark. That’s the goal of Alinsky social policies. At all costs, keep people angry. Keep people divided. Keep people distracted. We feared as a country there was no coming back from this.

But then something happened. This time was different. This time things didn’t go according to the their plan. This time, spurred on by the courage of families left behind, forgiving an unforgivable monster, with arms linked on bridges and church pews, Charleston joined together and made it known to racial extremists, both black and white, that their community would not be defined by them. Hate would not win. The country isn’t divided. The country isn’t racist. The country is exhausted.

As we witnessed Charlestonians of every race, color, and confessional creed congregating and joining hands as services at Emanuel A.M.E. Church resumed on Sunday, our President and his special advisor Valerie Jarrett were finger-wagging everyone on Twitter from the confines of an exclusive private country club in Palm Springs, CA…Obama entered the White House briefing room the morning after the attack, gave a short two minute statement, lectured the country about gun control and then got on his airplane and flew away to Hollywood. Beyond a couple sparse tweets, that was all we heard from him. It takes a truly special brand of narcissism to decide to sit out the healing and grieving process a country takes upon itself in its President’s absence, yet at the same time scold it from an iPhone at Tyler Perry’s house or a golf course in Palm Springs.

Ronald Reagan sat in the Oval Office and embedded the memory of Christa McAuliffe and her crew into the permanent consciousness of the country. Bill Clinton’s down-home personal touch helped a country cope with, and understand a devastating act of domestic terror in Oklahoma City. George W. Bush, on the night of September 11th, 2001, exited Marine One and marched across the south lawn of the White House alone, head unbowed, and addressed a confused and angry nation against the wishes of his Secret Service.

With this President, checking out seems to be his only coping mechanism of choice, an inadequate response for a man tasked as the leader of the free world. Barack Obama, indignant that he can’t use the Charleston shooting to pass his political agenda, seems to have found no use in acting as a consoler-in-chief, but instead offered up a half-hearted lecture on gun control premised on faulty statistics. Then he boarded Air Force One and flew to Hollywood for four fundraisers, a podcast with a comedian and two days of golf. Just as he did after the terror attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi. Just as he did in the Hamptons and at the White House Correspondents Dinner as images of Ferguson and Baltimore being burnt to the ground blazed across cable channels.

This country doesn’t have a race problem. It has a leadership problem. In spite of unimaginable horror, however (and in spite of the vacuum of leadership), Charleston has given us hope. For the first time in seven years, the country turned its back on divisive rhetoric and policies. It drowned out the voices of a leftist mob hoping to leave a scorched wasteland wherever it goes (but particularly wherever the cameras follow). Charleston has begun to put itself back together and has done so without Al Sharpton’s paid mob of leftist shock troops or Barack Obama’s idle threats and apathy. They didn’t turn their pain into rage and then take it out on businesses in the community. They harnessed it into a message of hope and forgiveness, thus neutering the shooter of his stated goals. It was illuminating. It was inspiring and the remaining remnants of an organized horde of occupiers and incendiaries were helpless to stop it.

Charleston turned their back on hate, and did so without occupying a park, torching a business, smashing up a single cop car, or burning a single American flag. It’s a country we aren’t used to seeing anymore, which is why the images from worshippers joining hands and embracing each other in faith felt so viscerally moving to so many. It’s something we haven’t seen in awhile and it’s not something the far left wants us to see. Progressive and network media were happy to wrap themselves in a biased political narrative about an outdated flag. The rest of the country wrapped itself in the of the arms of the victims, their families, and the congregants of Emanuel A.M.E. Church, and let it be known loud and clear that they were not alone. Charleston, like New York or Boston, is not alone. That is the country we are.

Go to the link to read the whole thing. It’s an excellent essay.

Obama has full confidence in every loser who has presided over every IT disaster in his administration.

“I’m shocked,” said no one.

The number of veterans seeking health care but ending up on waiting lists of one month or more is 50 percent higher now than it was a year ago when a scandal over false records and long wait times wracked the Department of Veterans Affairs, The New York Times reported.

Least surprising result ever:

The main question was: Who would be more biased in their judgments of the article, liberals or conservatives? People were asked to indicate how true they considered the article to be, and how biased they considered the author to be. And the resounding answer was: Liberals were far more biased. Liberals viewed the articles reporting “liberal” results (affirmative action and same sex relationships are good) as truer and reflecting less author bias than the articles reporting “conservative” results. Conservatives, in contrast, viewed the truthfulness and bias in the articles as nearly identical, regardless of their results.

An early version of this paper was framed quite explicitly as examining whether political biases were symmetric (i.e., similar for conservatives or liberals) or asymmetric (larger for liberals or conservatives). Clearly, we found they were larger for liberals. We thought this result was incredibly important, because so much prior research had emphasized bias and distortion among conservatives and had reported that such biases were generally larger than those occurring among liberals. As such, this should have been important “news” – even “counterintuitive news” given how much the received wisdom emphasized conservative bias (and, for better or worse, social psychology has long been enamored of such counterintuitive findings – although, as this story demonstrates, perhaps it is primarily counterintuitive findings that do not challenge the supposed moral or intellectual superiority of liberals that are so privileged).

We could not get this published. It was rejected at two separate journals. Finally, we decided to bag every mention of liberals being more biased than conservatives, and resubmitted it to another journal. This time, it was accepted. Now, even though the text does not mention finding that liberals were more biased than conservatives, the pattern is right there, in the data reported in tables and figures, for anyone to see. The paper shows that liberals are more biased than conservatives, at least when and how we studied it. Neither I nor Jarret would or did claim that such a pattern is always necessarily true. But it was true in our data. We were just not permitted to say so.

LOL SecDef Carter is a mean meanie because he scolded the author once and mouthed off to a car wash owner at age 11. What a sad attempt at a hit piece.

“An angry dwarf has been tasered and jailed after sticking a sucker dart on his head and threatening to kill two carers while impersonating a Doctor Who Dalek.”

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