JON GABRIEL: Three Presidents, Three Views on Racial Empowerment: Despite Trump’s reputation for divisive rhetoric, President Biden is now the one needlessly stoking racial grievance.

Despite Trump’s “reputation” — which is mostly based on his opponents’ deliberate mischaracterizations — Trump’s views on race are more traditionally liberal, and more widely in tune with the American public’s, than those of the race-grifters and -baiters who make up the mainstream political establishment and media.

A 30% MORTALITY RATE WITHIN 48 HOURS IS NO JOKE: Japan sees record spike in infections caused by tissue-damaging bacteria.

“Most of the deaths happen within 48 hours,” Kikuchi added. “As soon as a patient notices swelling in their foot in the morning, it can expand to the knee by noon and they can die within 48 hours.”

STSS symptoms start as a fever, muscle pain and vomiting, but as the bacterial infection spreads into deep tissues and the bloodstream the symptoms can become life-threatening with swelling, low blood pressure and organ failure.

Since I don’t have a spleen, I’m more vulnerable to this. I keep a brutally strong antibiotic (Levaquin) on hand, and I’m supposed to gulp it and head to the ER at the first sign of symptoms.

CUE THE WORLD’S SMALLEST VIOLIN:

Read the whole thing.

Biden was the Democrats’ backstop against Bernie Sanders in 2020 but the scheming White House cabal has left Democrats with no backstop against Biden in 2024.

GEE, THAT DIDN’T TAKE LONG AT ALL AFTER THE COVID CRISIS SUBSIDED:

PAULA BOLYARD [VIP]: Did Fox News Just Let the Cat Out of the Bag? “I flipped on Fox News for a few minutes yesterday after the Cleveland Indians game ended (don’t get me started on the name change) and thought I was watching MSNBC. First, Eric Shawn went to bat for a gun-grabber, trying to gin up fear about the recent Supreme Court decision to rescind the bump stock ban. But then it got worse.”

ABOUT THAT BIG CRIME REDUCTION…: Secret Service agent robbed at gunpoint after Biden fundraiser. “On Saturday evening, a Secret Service employee had his bag stolen at gunpoint near a Southern California residential community, according to the Tustin Police Department. The agent fired his service weapon during the robbery, though it’s unknown whether the suspect was injured because they have not been located yet.”

OUT ON A LIMB: Antony Blinken embodies decades of failure.

There is no sign marking the entrance to Barman Dictat. The bar under 44 Khreshchatyk Street in Kyiv boasts the largest mezcal collection in Eastern Europe. On a typical night you can find it by noting the crowd of people wafting cigarette smoke into the evening air. Inside, you’ll find shelves of more than 400 glowing bottles perched above a steel bar stretching more than thirty feet. You’ll find bespoke cocktails — Kraken, Smoky Voice and Tickle Balls. And, on one particular May evening, you’ll find the seventy-first secretary of state of the United States of America at center stage.

Clad in black and wielding a scarlet electric guitar, Antony Blinken seemed less enthused about the moment than his staff had perhaps anticipated. “Listen, I know this is a really, really difficult time,” he told a small crowd of Ukrainians. “Your soldiers, your citizens, particularly in the northeast in Kharkiv, are suffering tremendously. But they need to know, you need to know, the United States is with you, so much of the world is with you. And they’re fighting not just for a free Ukraine but for the free world, and the free world is with you, too. So maybe we can try something?” And, displaying all the effort and verve of a sixty-two-year-old whose guitar skills are more rust than steel, he meandered his way through Neil Young’s “Rockin’ in the Free World.”

The stunt didn’t play well. MSNBC worried that it conjured up “a kind of Nero fiddling as Rome burns vibe.” Ukrainian officials denounced it as tone-deaf. One Ukrainian veteran who lost both his legs in com- bat described it as “as inappropriate as possible.” And the choice of song came under attack, too. Rather than some rah-rah rocker advocating for pride in the Western world, Young’s lyrics depict American malaise and decline — which seems oddly appropriate for Blinken to misunderstand. The headline in New York magazine was blunt: “Antony Blinken Sucks at the Guitar and Should Stop Playing.”

Besides, Obama retreads know that when it comes to playing guitar while war is ongoing, there is only one man to call – well, maybe two: Awkward: John Kerry Brings James Taylor to Paris, Sings ‘You’ve Got a Friend.’