August 16, 2022

I’VE SEEN THIS MOVIE BEFORE. I’M UNIMPRESSED (AND HAVING TROUBLE WORKING):  Trump: FBI “Stole” My Passports During Mar-a-Lago Raid.

PELOSI MIGHT BE A DAUGHTER OF THE EARTH. MY MOTHER WAS BETTER THAN DIRT:  Pelosi: Inflation Reduction Act Will Appease “Mother Earth”.

AND HIDE THEIR OWN PETTY TYRANNY AND INVINCIBLE STUPIDITY:  Feds Oppose Unsealing Affidavit Used To Obtain Mar-a-Lago Search Warrant, To Protect Ongoing Investigation and “National Security”.

THIS IS HOW AN AMERICAN PRESIDENT ACTS:  Trump: America ‘is in a Very Dangerous Position’ and the ‘Temperature has to be Brought Down’.

IT WON’T. WE’RE NOT CHINESE PEASANTS. IT’S TOO MUCH INFORMATION TO PROCESS: Let’s hope this isn’t our surveillance future.

YES. AND I HAVE A NOVEL TO FINISH:  Has Biden Crossed the Rubicon?

Writing as society comes apart over your head seems…. interesting.  They should be careful. Caesar was a Populist leader. They ain’t.

WELL! IF YOU’RE CATHOLIC, REMEMBER THEY ALWAYS TELL YOU WHAT THEY’RE AFRAID OF: The Atlantic Attacks the ‘Militaristic’ Rosary.

Didn’t your granny tell you it was powerful? Make tomorrow a knee day!

APPARENTLY THEY COULDN’T SEE THE CONSEQUENCES OF DEMANDING WE BELIEVE ALL WOMEN:  New research: #MeToo movement hurt female productivity.

Because you know what? I’m a woman, and I wouldn’t trust half of the hysterics claiming they’ve been abused within three meters of me, let alone in the same meeting room. Once we got to #metoo accusations that boiled down to “he oppressed me with his male gaze” sane men were going to shut the door on any woman, to avoid getting put over the barrel. Only idiots, hysterics and Marxists (BIRM) couldn’t see that coming.

YEAH, IT’S ALL NONSENSE, BS AND SOCIALISM:  Green No Deal.

THEY THINK THEY’LL HAVE IT SO SEWN UP NO ONE ELSE WILL EVER GET A LOOK IN:  The Fifth Law.

THE HILL TO DIE ON IS RED WHITE AND BLUE, AND WE’RE PLAYING FOR THE WHOLE USA:  The Hill to Die On.

IT IS INDEED A PATTERN OF VIOLENCE, BUT NOT AMERICAN: Finally, Rushdie.

August 15, 2022

#JOURNALISM: Trump Accused of Lying Over FBI-Seized Passports, Then He Dropped the Receipts. “So let me get this straight. The FBI did indeed seize Trump’s passports, which seems incredibly improper given what was legally allowed to be taken by the warrant, and that’s somehow his fault? A passport is not something you just accidentally grab, thinking it’s a presidential record. It’s the kind of thing that an agent purposely took and knew exactly what they were taking. Yet, the big gotcha here is that Trump was wrong about the expiration date on one of the passports. It’s absurd. The big story here is that the FBI took the passports in the first place. It is not that Trump shared an email that ended up embarrassing the bureau’s leadership, who were apparently content to keep lying about the matter via leaks until the former president exposed them. Now, the mainstream media wants to pretend like the seizure was just an honest mistake that shouldn’t be held against the FBI. Yeah, that’s not how any of this works.”

EVERYTHING IS GOING SWIMMINGLY:

OPEN THREAD: Because I love you and want you to be happy.

THE LID: One Year After Biden’s Afghanistan Debacle.

One year ago this week, buoyed by President Joe Biden’s feckless surrender, totalitarian thugs known as the Taliban — an evil group that protected perpetrators of the 9/11 terror attacks — swept into Afghanistan’s capital following the collapse of the country’s government.

Even isolationists and anti-military zealots in the West remember the horrifying images that followed, most notably Afghans falling from cargo planes and an infant being tossed over razor wire.

This never should have happened. And it effectively ended Biden’s presidency just seven months in.

Following the Aug. 26 murder of 13 U.S. servicemen in Kabul by an Islamist suicide bomber, I wrote, “The attack that killed 13 Americans and at least 100 in Kabul on Thursday does not spell “the end” of the Biden presidency, but it’s absolutely a moral and political catastrophe for the 46th president.”

While Biden, who’s enjoying another oceanside vacation, claims Americans agreed with his decision to withdraw from Afghanistan, he had over 50% approval on Aug. 19 last year, then dropped 20 points once people saw the horrific images. He’s never recovered.

If only there was a visual metaphor for Biden’s dramatic poll drop. If only.

OLD AND BUSTED: “Men Can Have Periods, Too!”

The New Hotness? Women in Scotland outraged as country’s first ever Period Poverty tsar is announced as a MAN.

The decision to appoint a man as Scotland’s first ever so-called ‘period dignity officer’ has prompted outrage, on the same day the flagship law offering free period products to all in need of them was launched.

Dundee man and former personal trainer Jason Grant is the newly appointed period dignity officer for the Tay region – who has the task of promoting access to free sanitary products across schools and colleges – where he will also discuss issues around the menopause.

It follows the Scottish Government’s introduction of the Period Products Act, which means councils and education providers are now legally obliged to offer out tampons and pads for free in a response to a period poverty campaign.

We live in truly the stupidest timeline imaginable.

THAT’S NOT CREEPY AT ALL: Amazon studio plans lighthearted show of Ring surveillance footage.

Viral videos captured by doorbell cameras have been hot for a while now. You can catch them on late-night talk shows, the r/CaughtOnRing subreddit, and on millions of TikTok users’ For You page. Amazon’s media properties, perhaps sensing an opportunity to capitalize and soften Ring’s image, are sallying forth with an officially branded offering.

Ring Nation will feature “neighbors saving neighbors, marriage proposals, military reunions and silly animals,” Deadline writes. But Ring Nation might be aiming even higher, according to Ring founder Jamie Siminoff—to something approaching a salve for our deeply divided nation.

“Bringing the new community together is core to our mission at Ring, and Ring Nation gives friends and family a fun new way to enjoy time with one another,” Siminoff told Deadline. “We’re so excited to have Wanda Sykes join Ring Nation to share people’s memorable moments with viewers.”

Ring sharing its owners’ moments with other viewers has been a contentious issue. The surveillance company recently admitted giving police access to Ring recordings without user consent for “emergency” requests. Ring partnered with more than 600 law enforcement agencies to encourage Ring installations in communities and ease police access to footage. Ring has since made it easier to opt out of police requests.

I do not trust the Internet of things, to coin an Insta-phrase.

BRENDAN O’NEILL: From Rushdie to Rowling — how identity politics turned violent.

It felt grimly fitting that JK Rowling was subjected to yet another death threat in the wake of the sickening attack on Salman Rushdie. For Rowling is Rushdie to the woke set. With her gender-critical views, she disgusts the preachers of correct thought as much as Rushdie disgusted the clerics of Iran. To the woke ayatollahs of the trans movement and its noisy allies in the media, Rowling is a blasphemer, an utterer of profanity, an apostate of PC. They threaten her with death, as Islamists did with Rushdie. They burn her books, as mobs did with The Satanic Verses. They dream of silencing her, as Iran dreamt of silencing Salman. It isn’t only regressive religious elders who issue fatwas against dissenting writers these days.

‘Don’t worry you are next’, a man tweeted at Rowling when she expressed horror over the stabbing of Rushdie. In this instance the vile intimidator of Ms Rowling seems to be someone with Islamist leanings. That makes a change. Normally the people who threaten Rowling with death – or assault, or rape – are adherents to the cult of transgender rather than the cult of radical Islam. In July a tweeter with the trans flag in his bio posted Rowling’s family address alongside an image of a bomb-making handbook. Another expressed his desire to ‘kill TERFs’ and said to Rowling: ‘I hope you fit in a hearse, bitch.’ Social-media sites overflow with deranged fantasies about Rowling dying a violent death. Seeing someone say to Rowling ‘Bitch I’m gonna kill you’ has become shockingly normal in the 2020s. Probably as normal as it was to hear hardline Muslims say ‘Rushdie must die’ as they chatted after prayers in Tehran back in the day.

The Ayatollah Khomeini’s famous quote that “There are no jokes in Islam. There is no humor in Islam. There is no fun in Islam. There can be no fun and joy in whatever is serious,” is the mantra of the far left as well: THAT’S NOT FUNNY! Hysterical Reinhart Meme Goes Viral After Twitter Ban.

(Artwork by Jon Gabriel.)

GO OUTSIDE, PROGRESSIVE WRITERS: In which Charles C.W. Cooke asks the (likely rhetorical) question, “Do America’s progressive writers know anybody who isn’t . . . a lunatic?”

Do America’s progressive writers know anybody who isn’t . . . a lunatic? I ask this because, in the course of my morning reading, I came across two widely shared pieces that, had they been presented to mixed company at the pitch stage, would ineluctably have yielded raised eyebrows, widespread confusion, and, eventually, a friendly “are you feeling all right?”

The first contribution is from the Atlantic. It’s called “How the Rosary Became an Extremist Symbol,” and it claims that those shadowy, ever-present “Christian nationalists” have started combining sacramental beads and “gun culture.” To underscore the idea, its artwork is in the form of an animated gif that replaces a Rosary’s beads with bullet holes. This claim is typical of the whole:

Just as the AR-15 rifle has become a sacred object for Christian nationalists in general, the rosary has acquired a militaristic meaning for radical-traditional (or “rad trad”) Catholics. On this extremist fringe, rosary beads have been woven into a conspiratorial politics and absolutist gun culture. These armed radical traditionalists have taken up a spiritual notion that the rosary can be a weapon in the fight against evil and turned it into something dangerously literal.

The conclusion:

The “battle beads” culture of spiritual warfare permits radical-traditional Catholics literally to demonize their political opponents and regard the use of armed force against them as sanctified. The sacramental rosary isn’t just a spiritual weapon but one that comes with physical ammunition.

As an example of the “I saw a few weird things online and fed them into my paranoia” genre, it’s an instant classic. As a reflection of real life in America, it is a disaster. I would say that the author needs to stop trawling the Internet and go out and meet some actual American Catholics, but, having looked him up, I learned that he lives in Canada. That, at least, provides him with an excuse. I’m not sure what the Atlantic‘s is.

The Atlantic has changed the headlines and artwork multiple times:

 

BRUCE BAWER: Diving Into a Pool of PC.

Some people are foolish enough to take their political cues from show-business celebrities like Bette Midler, Rob Reiner, and Cher. Not me. I listen to athletes. So when I heard that 28-year-old British diver Tom Daley had made a documentary about the current status of human rights in certain former British colonies, I sought it out at once.

Just in case you didn’t know, Daley won a gold medal at the 2020 Olympics. He’s also come in first at the Commonwealth Games no fewer than four times. The premise of his documentary, Illegal to Be Me, is that, as this year’s Commonwealth Games approached (they were held in Birmingham between July 28 and Aug. 8), he began to think about the fact that, in 35 of the 56 countries competing in the games, it’s illegal to be gay. In three of those countries, homosexuality is punishable by death.

In some of Nigeria’s northern states, he informs us, the penalty for homosexuality is death by stoning. He doesn’t explain why this is the case in the north but not the south. Want to guess?

Daley says that since he himself is gay — he came out in 2013 — and has competed all over the Commonwealth, these statistics give him a queasy feeling. He’s won medals in some of those 35 anti-gay countries: How, he asks, should he feel about those medals? The anti-gay laws also pique his historical curiosity — where did all this hatred come from? — and make him want to “get the sporting world to try to change things.”

His tentative goal, he tells us at the outset of the documentary — which aired on BBC One on Aug. 9 — is to persuade Commonwealth Games officials to deny countries with anti-gay laws the right to host the Commonwealth Games. But he realizes that this stratagem may be misguided. “I still have so much to learn,” he admits. So he travels to a couple of the anti-gay Commonwealth countries to “meet some queer athletes,” see how they live, and bounce his ideas off them.

First up is Pakistan…

Ellipses mine. It’s the BBC, so I think you can see where this is going, but read the whole thing, nonetheless. If Netflix teamed up Daley with Colin Kaepernick to host a series, the level of wokeness and blinkered PC-thinking would likely implode the universe.

Speaking of the latter athlete turned woke activist: Adam Schefter Shoots Down Kaepernick to the Cleveland Browns Rumor: NFL World Reacts.

I think the author may have misspelled “yawns” at the end of that headline.

FASTER, PLEASE: Newly Discovered Molecule Fights Off Over 300 Kinds of Drug-Resistant Bacteria. “The molecule is called fabimycin, and further down the line it could be used to fight off some of the most stubborn infections that humans can get. The new potential treatment targets gram-negative bacteria, a group of hard-to-kill pathogens that are commonly behind infections of the urinary tract, lungs, and even the bloodstream.”

JAY LENO’S GARAGE: Jay drives the 2023 Nissan Z (video):

GOODER AND HARDER, L.A.: Los Angeles County DA George Gascon recall petition found ‘insufficient’ to qualify for ballot.

A petition to recall Gascon had nearly 200,000 signatures out of more than 715,000 invalidated.

AL GORE HARDEST HIT: Arctic Sea Ice Prediction Reaches 12 Year Mid-August High.

THAT’S NOT FUNNY! Hysterical Reinhart Meme Goes Viral After Twitter Ban. “Bad weather, a bottle of Early Times, and a bag of Oreos ain’t exactly a private jet with a willing busty underling, but some judges gotta take what they can get.”

A USEFUL ACCOUNTING: How We Gave Up On Salman Rushdie: Britain saw his fatwa and internalised it. “But the finest words of all, demonstrating how morbid it all was, came from a man dead for 10 years. In the first rounds of the fatwa, Christopher Hitchens had tirelessly stumped for Rushdie. Now, in this latest, unexpected round, Hitchens was summoned from his grave. All weekend, videos of him defending Rushdie were shared, videos where Hitchens spoke with an unimaginable frankness, videos where he spoke with more force, more intelligence, and more authority than anybody alive today.”

Plus:

In Joseph Anton, Rushdie writes that even his own defences of free speech had started to sound “stale in his own ears”. Something curdled in the 2010s. While he has escaped with his life long enough to become truly, especially bored of the fatwa, he begins to realise that the cause he is fighting for, the principle he embodies, is in decay. “Something new was happening here: the growth of a new intolerance. It was spreading across the surface of the earth, but nobody wanted to know.” What was happening? A simple, popular idea: if the collective felt upset, it had the right to silence the individual. This is what countless controversies, from Charlie Hebdo to The Lady of Heaven, scratching away in the background, proved. Authors like Peter Carey, who defended Rushdie in the Nineties, would not defend Charlie Hebdo in 2015, not weeks after the cartoonists had been slaughtered in their offices.

The world had turned. The idea had been internalised. It had spread far and wide, beyond religion, beyond anything Khomeini could have imagined, freakishly stretching and reaching into every cultural nook. The principle had a language: “It isn’t worth the fuss; it’s not a good look; it won’t play well.” . . . “Good men would give in to fear and call it respect,” Rushdie predicted in Joseph Anton. “Good men would commit intellectual suicide and call it peace.” He was right.

Garbage people can always find reasons to be cowards, or simply to side with the bullies. And God knows, they do.

SO WOKE, SO BROKE: Predictably, The Lord Of The Rings: The Rings Of Power Executive Producer Calls Critics Racists.

Executive producer Lindsey Weber predictably decided to attack The Lord of the Rings and Tolkien fans as racists.

Weber made it abundantly clear the production and show would be eschewing Tolkien’s work when she told Vanity Fair in February, “It felt only natural to us that an adaptation of Tolkien’s work would reflect what the world actually looks like.”

“Tolkien is for everyone,” she added. “His stories are about his fictional races doing their best work when they leave the isolation of their own cultures and come together.

Months after making it extremely clear that the show would not be following Tolkien’s works, Weber is now accusing critics of racism.

From everything I’ve seen and read, the woke casting is the least of the show’s many troubles. After watching the trailer — and trying to forget the painful promotional clips and photos — if you asked me what the show was about, the best answer I could give would be, “People run places.”

Amazon reportedly spent nearly half a billion dollars just getting the first season produced. The plan is for five seasons, and the first cost nearly $60 million per episode.

On top of production costs, Amazon paid an “insane” $250 million just for the rights to Tolkien’s lesser-known Middle Earth appendices, but have strayed so far from the source material that it’s a stretch to put “Lord of the Rings” in the title.

Considering that the producers are already at war with the Tolkien fans — whose word-of-mouth could break the show — The Rings of Power looks like it might end up the most expensive flop in history.

DAVID BOAZ: Phonics, Failure, and the Public Schools. At this point, leaving your kids in the public schools looks a lot like parental malpractice.

VDH: Why Merrick Garland Is Losing the People.

Despite Garland’s pious assertions, we know the modus operandi of selective leaking from the career of Andrew McCabe. The disgraced former interim FBI director admitted to lying to federal investigators about his role in leaking to the Wall Street Journal. And the inspector general found McCabe lied on several other occasions about his efforts to leak to and massage the media. At this point, we should assume that “sources tell us” and “according to unnamed sources” are indications that the sources are Justice Department and FBI contacts who were given the green light to manipulate the news by their superiors.

Let’s put Garland’s decision to approve the raid on Mar-a-Lago in the context of the past seven years. The Justice Department and FBI in 2016 interfered in a presidential election in two major ways: They exonerated Hillary Clinton’s clearly illegal use of a private server and her destruction of subpoenaed data. The FBI hired Clinton operative Christopher Steele as an informant and gave its “Crossfire Hurricane” imprimatur to the entire Russian collusion hoax, feeding a 2016 left-wing mantra that Trump was a Russian “asset.”

In 2015, we learned that candidate Hillary Clinton, as Barack Obama’s secretary of state, had emailed classified government materials using her own private server, likely as a way of skirting Freedom of Information Act requirements. 

In the thick of the 2016 campaign a year later, FBI Director James Comey reported that Clinton had, in fact, broken the law. Yet he assumed a role of federal attorney that was not his own, deciding Clinton’s wrongdoing should not lead to an indictment. 

In that improper role, Comey, not U.S. attorneys, declined to hold Clinton accountable. We learned later that Attorney General Loretta Lynch had met secretly on an airport tarmac (“a brief, casual, social meeting”) with Bill Clinton. 

Somewhere within this tangle of lies (both said they met only to talk about their grandchildren, not about whether the Justice Department would charge Hillary Clinton), we learned: 1) Lynch abdicated her role and simply let Comey play the role of investigator and prosecutor, and 2) Hillary Clinton had “bleached” thousands of emails, some of them under federal subpoena, and destroyed her communication devices and records—all federal felonies.

Trump won the election in 2016, but he never controlled the federal government. For 22 months, at a cost of $40 million, Robert Mueller investigated whether Trump had “colluded” with the Russians to take the White House. Ironically, there was ample evidence to show that Hillary Clinton may, in fact, have done exactly that.

Read the whole thing.

IT’S BEEN WORSE THAN INEFFECTUAL: Karol Markowicz: Disband the CDC Now.

PAPER THAT ONCE DECLARED “WE ARE SOCIALISTS NOW” SUDDENLY SQUEAMISH ABOUT NATIONAL SOCIALISM REFERENCES: Mega-thread shows that WaPo didn’t always have an aversion to Nazi comparisons and terms like ‘banana republic.’

NOT WIDELY PUBLICIZED, BUT IT HAPPENS ALL OVER: Another Armed Citizen Stops a Crazed Mass Shooter.

EVERYTHING IS GOING SWIMMINGLY, CHAIRMAN XI: Video shows Shanghai shoppers scramble to break out of Ikea store after snap lockdown announced.

FIRE THEM. FIRE THEM ALL: Teachers union tells educators to ignore Florida law on not teaching gender identity in schools.

NEVER FORGET: It’s Been a Year Since Biden’s Botched Afghanistan Withdrawal.

READER FAVORITE: SHARPAL 191H Pocket Kitchen Chef Knife Scissors Sharpener. #CommissionEarned

MICHAEL WALSH: Alea Iacta Est.

Now in the vengeful attorney general Merrick Garland—whose nomination to the Supreme Court by Barack Obama luckily died in the Senate in 2017 with the arrival of the Trump administration— we have the second coming of Lavrentiy Beria, the head of the secret police under Josef Stalin in the country Democrats long most admired, Soviet Russia. (They’ve since transferred their affections to Communist China.) Never before in the history of our Republic—a phrase conservatives ought to be using as a counterweight to the Democrats’ deceitful “our democracy”—has the nation’s chief legal officer ordered an armed raid on a former president, in this case on Biden’s immediate predecessor and the leading contender for the GOP nomination in 2024.

It’s step of breathtaking audacity, but hardly surprising. Not for nothing is the Democrats’ unofficial motto “by any means necessary.” Since the days of Burr and Jefferson Davis and John Wilkes Booth, violence has always lurked just below the surface of their “higher” patriotism. Indeed, as the Sixties exemplified, it’s part of their appeal.

Read the whole thing.

WHAT IS COMING BY 2035? “The coming decade will likely see the biggest changes of our lives. These will be bigger than the internet and the smartphone.”

I’m not sure the biggest changes of the coming decade will be technology driven.

AP: Afghanistan marks one year since Taliban seizure as woes mount.

Ctrl-F “Biden” returns zero results, unexpectedly.

UPDATE: Joe Who? ABC Avoids Biden’s Name in Report on ‘Sad,’ ‘Hungry’ Afghanistan.

(Updated and bumped.)

ALSO, WHETHER YOU HAVE HAIR LEFT: Cortisol concentrations in your hair may reveal how stressed you have been.

EVERYTHING IS GOING SWIMMINGLY: American workforce continues to shrink, falls 400k since March after nearly hitting prepandemic levels.

For all the boasting the White House does about jobs, there are fewer Americans working after two years of “recovery,” and more of those who are working are forced to work part-time or work two jobs to make ends meet.

SECURITY HOLES: Bear scales barbed-wire fence at Air Force base in Florida.

NIP IT IN THE BUD. Removing small kidney stones may prevent recurrent problems.

JUNK SCIENCE? A New Study Challenges the Reliability of Court Psych Exams. “A team of lawyers and psychologists reviewed 364 exams used in the legal system, finding a third of them don’t pass muster with forensic mental health experts.”

I ran across this article recently (yes, it is two years old but still relevant) and was not surprised that many of these evaluations that access high stakes decisions such as child custody or competency issues are just plain unreliable and done shoddily. The worst part is that rarely do judges or lawyers challenge these mistakes and if they do, they only succeed about a third of the time. Lawyers should start challenging the experts and their instruments (if they even use any) more often or hire an expert who can consult and help them understand what questions to ask to make it clear that some of these evals are suspect. Add in a program to educate judges on what should be in a forensic exam and maybe this will help clean up the problem.

HOW GRIGGS v. DUKE POWER CO.’S DISPARATE IMPACT THEORY HAS HELPED CREATE STUDENT DEBT:  “A Novel Plan to Reduce Student Debt.

For the background all conservatives should have on disparate impact liability and why Griggs v. Duke Power Co. (1971), was an utter usurpation by the Supreme Court, please read “Title VII Disparate Impact Liability Makes Almost Everything Presumptively Illegal.”  Our legal system is soooo messed up.

IT’S NEVER ENOUGH: DC has never gotten this much in taxes — but Dems say it’s still not enough. “Washington has almost never been so awash in taxes. Since 1960, federal tax revenues have remained generally close to the average level of 17.4% of the economy. Yet after jumping last year, revenues this year are scheduled to surge again to 19.6% of the economy — the second-highest level since World War II.”

One minor distinction: World War II had an end, but there’s no limit to Washington’s appetite for taxes, spending, borrowing, and control.

AS A FRIEND SAYS, THEIR RELIGION IS DETESTING YOURS:

Related: Ed Morrissey: Father, forgive The Atlantic, for they know not about what they write.

UPDATE: From the comments: “There is a new trend, and it is battlespace prep. In both the US and Canada there is now a coordinated effort by the political/MSM class to portray every kind of dissent from secular progressive authoritarianism as nothing less than violent insurrection and terrorism. In the Canadian media, people who object to vaccine mandates have been promoted from Nazis to a vast network of violent insurrectionists. In the US, we are told that people angry about the Mar-A-Lago raid are about to commence terrorist actions against civilians, even using dirty bombs.”

VIDEO: Is Kamala Harris Talking About Space Or From There? “Alleged Vice President Kamala Harris has a way with words like a mugger has with a victim whose wallet is empty: Abusive but ultimately pointless.”

JEFFREY TUCKER: A DEEPER DIVE INTO THE CDC’S REVERSAL.

It would have been fascinating to be a fly on the wall in the brainstorming sessions that led to this little treatise. The wording was chosen very carefully, not to say anything false outright, much less admit any errors of the past, but to imply that it was only possible to say these things now.

In English: everyone can pretty much go back to normal. Focus on illness that is medically significant. Stop worrying about positive cases because nothing is going to stop them. Think about the bigger picture of overall social health. End the compulsion. Thank you. It’s only two and a half years late.

What about mass testing?

Forget it: “All persons should seek testing for active infection when they are symptomatic or if they have a known or suspected exposure to someone with COVID-19.”

Oh.

What about the magic of track and trace?

“CDC now recommends case investigation and contact tracing only in health care settings and certain high-risk congregate settings.”

Oh.

What about the unvaccinated who were so demonized throughout the last year?

“CDC’s COVID-19 prevention recommendations no longer differentiate based on a person’s vaccination status because breakthrough infections occur, though they are generally mild, and persons who have had COVID-19 but are not vaccinated have some degree of protection against severe illness from their previous infection.”

Remember when 40% of the members of the black community in New York City who refused the jab were not allowed into restaurants, bars, libraries, museums, or theaters? Now, no one wants to talk about that.

Also, universities, colleges, the military, and so on – which still have mandates in place – do you hear this? Everything you have done to hate on people, dehumanize people, segregate people, humiliate others as unclean, fire people and destroy lives, now stands in disrepute.

Meanwhile, as of this writing, the blasted US government still will not allow unvaccinated travelers across its borders!

Not one word of the CDC’s turgid treatise was untrue back in the Spring of 2020. There was always “infection-induced immunity,” though Fauci and Co. constantly pretended otherwise. It was always a terrible idea to introduce “barriers to social, educational, and economic activity.” The vaccines never promised in their authorization to stop infection and spread, even though all official statements of the CDC claimed otherwise, repeatedly and often. . . .

The problem from the beginning was that there never was an exit strategy from the crazy lockdown/mandate idea. It was never the case that they would magically cause the bug to go away. The excuse that we would lock down in wait for a vaccine never made any sense.

People surely knew early on of the social, economic, and cultural devastation that would ensue.

They knew, they just didn’t mind.

UPDATE: From the comments: “In my quick glance through, it reads like the Great Barrington Declaration!”

GET IN SHAPE: Bigger Leaner Stronger: The Simple Science of Building the Ultimate Male Body. #CommissionEarned

ALL IS PROCEEDING AS ANY IDIOT COULD HAVE FORESEEN.

  1. Canada socializes healthcare.
  2. Canada legalizes euthanasia.
  3. The Canadian government-controlled health care establishment realizes, “Hey, wait a minute, it’s cheaper if these people die, let’s pressure them into it.”
  4. “Euthanasia” is now Canada’s sixth-leading cause of death.

At no point does it seem to have occurred to anyone that giving the government strong financial incentive to want you dead was a bad idea.

HE’S SUSPECTED OF TWO ADDITIONAL MURDERS: Muhammad Syed’s public safety assessment recommends he be released before trial.

The Public Safety Assessment is used to assess people charged with crimes in New Mexico.

“It’s basically a checklist that the pretrial services department goes down. They add up all the scores. At the end of the checklist, they can tell the judge if a person ought to be released or the person ought to be kept in jail,” said KOAT legal expert, John Day.

Recently, the assessment came down for Muhammad Syed, the man who is accused of killing two Muslim men.

“It shows that he has no convictions for any criminal offense, which is accurate. He’s of an age where the courts believe he will likely appear,” Day said.

Syed’s assessment shows his criminal activity score is a 2 out of a possible 6, and his failure to appear is a 3.

“The recommendation is that he be released,” Day said.

The assessment recommends he be released, despite his two first-degree murder charges.

“‘Why do they hate us?’ was never the right question. ‘Why do they despise us?’ is a better one.”

THERE WAS AN EARTH-SHATTERING KABOOM: Oops: Ukraine destroys Wagner Group HQ after Russian “reporter” accidentally gives away location.

LGB-DROP-THE-T: Is the Transgender Cult in Trouble Now?

GREENS WANT YOU TO BE COLD, MISERABLE, AND FEW IN NUMBER: Google Searches For ‘Firewood’ In Germany Have Exploded. “Bloomberg’s Javier Blas shows in his “chart of the day”, that google searches for firewood (‘Brennholz’) have exploded in the past couple of months now that electricity is no longer a staple, but a luxury few can afford.”

THE STREISAND EFFECT IS ALIVE AND WELL: Attack on Rushdie Sends Novel ‘The Satanic Verses’ Up the Charts.

DO TELL: Raid on Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate questioned by some law professors.

YOU’LL NEVER UNDERESTIMATE JOE’S ABILITY TO F*** THINGS UP AGAIN: Why the Afghanistan Withdrawal Was the Perfect Storm of Bureaucratic Incompetence.

President Biden wants you to forget about what happened in Afghanistan. He wants you to forget about the bureaucratic incompetence and incompetent decision-making by nearly every senior leader. To this day, no one has been held accountable. Accountability, even verbally, would mean admitting failure and taking ownership, something the Biden administration refuses to accept.

The botched withdrawal wasn’t a mistake or a one-time bad call. The catastrophe occurred due to consistent and specific inept leadership failures at the Department of Defense, Department of State, the White House, and the Intelligence Community. Failure to plan. Failure to be realistic about the strength and capabilities of the Taliban. Failure to adequately prepare and vet people to get them out of the country before the U.S. military departed. The Biden administration failed to connect the dots and keep agencies in sync. Pentagon leadership downplayed the truth about the shell the Afghanistan government and military was, as well as the reality that without the U.S. dollar and military propping them up, they would all come crashing down. Washington was hoping for an Afghanistan that they wanted – that should have been after 20 years of war and $2 trillion – but wasn’t. The withdrawal wasn’t a mistake – it was a catastrophic failure of epic proportions.

Read the whole thing.

DEAL OF THE DAY: Shower Head with Extension Arm. #CommissionEarned

KRUISER’S MORNING BRIEFING: Biden’s Revenge-Fest Isn’t Going to Work Out Well for the Dems. “The Democrats and their flying monkeys in the mainstream media will continue to lie about what they are up to. They can’t admit that the thought of Trump on the ballot in 2024 is the thing that most terrifies them. Honesty is never the best policy with them anyway, but that’s the case even more when it comes to all things Trump-related.”

WELL, FOR MOST OF THEIR LIVES THE COUNTRY HAS BEEN RUN BY JEFFREY EPSTEIN’S CLIENTS: Generation Z doesn’t remember when America worked.

CRISIS BY DESIGN: New Outbreak Of Violence on U.S./Mexican Border. “An administration interested in protecting the lives of Americans might clamp down on border security to prevent more cartel members from entering the country. That is not this administration.”

TO BE FAIR, LEARNING ISN’T THEIR STRONG SUIT: Democrats are not learning from their defund-the-police failures.

THAT’S A LOW LIMBO BAR TO GET UNDER: Biden Finally Makes Statement on Rushdie Stabbing, and It’s Even Worse Than You’d Expect.

THIS IS THE FUTURE THEY HAVE PLANNED FOR US: PROHIBITIVELY EXPENSIVE PERSONAL TRANSPORTATION, UNRELIABLE PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION. Boston to Orange Line riders — Ride a bike!

Free Bluebikes?

You’ve got to be kidding.

With just a week left before the Orange Line and a section of the new Green Line shuts down for a month, the MBTA and city of Boston finally revealed how they intend to get more than 100,000 riders a day around the city and northern suburbs.

While the T’s main alternative is shuttle buses and cutting down trees to create new lanes, the ultra-woke Wu administration put out a breathtaking release suggesting people take those ubiquitous, ungainly Bluebikes during the shutdown — which will be free of charge for 45-minute trips.

“Biking can be a great alternative for some people during the shutdown,” said Boston’s “chief of streets” Jascha Franklin-Hodge. “Opening up and enhancing Bluebikes service is just one of the ways we’re helping residents access good alternatives to their normal transit routes.”

Great alternative for who? Disabled or physically impaired riders? People who don’t want to get mowed down by an SUV while pedaling their little bike?

Just what Boston needs — thousands of novice bike riders wheeling around the city trying to figure out how to get where they want to go. A great alternative for those who want to arrive at work exhausted, stressed out and drenched with sweat.

Taking a bike around the city is already difficult enough for brave and experienced riders, let alone newcomers who haven’t set foot on the pedals for years.

In a 4 p.m. Friday news dump, the T also put out their “diversion” plan for the month-long Orange Line shutdown scheduled to start Aug. 19, but no T officials were available to explain it.

Well, that’s because the explanation is “we suck.”

Plus: “The plan was short on details and extremely optimistic. The city and T are trying to steer people away from taking their cars to work, which is exactly what most people will try to do, and providing free shuttle buses and free commuter rail service to replace the Orange Line. . . . The question of how thousands of Boston Public School students are going to get to class on time while the Orange Line is closed was dealt with in a few short paragraphs on the city’s website, and there is no specific plan yet.”

JIM MEIGS: The Green War on Clean Energy: radical environmentalists fight against the very technologies that would cut carbon emissions.

To be fair, they don’t actually want to cut carbon emissions, they just want to make your life worse.

CAM EDWARDS SPEAKS WITH FASTER COLORADO’S LAURA CARNO ABOUT Colorado teachers arming up to protect students.

EVERYTHING IS GOING SWIMMINGLY: Americans Are Dipping Into Savings To Weather Bidenflation.

CHRIS HORNER: About That ‘Inflation Reduction Act…’ “So, no, it isn’t just a tax and spending bill. The ‘Inflation Reduction Act’ — also sold as deficit reduction — will neither lower inflation nor the deficit but, in addition to containing much of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s ‘Green New Deal’ spending, it also holds 40 pages of amendments to the Clean Air Act (CAA).”

YES. NEXT QUESTION? Is This Proof the Mar-a-Lago Raid Was a Fishing Expedition?

A REMINDER THAT PRINCETON IS A DUMPSTER FIRE AND CHRIS EISGRUBER IS TO BLAME:

There are two points to note in this exchange. First, Eisgruber came to the extraordinary conclusion that the free speech protections denied to a faculty member nevertheless extended to administrators who used university resources to smear and harass a member of the academic community to a captive audience of incoming students with no possibility of rebuttal. These smears, it’s worth noting, included the deliberate doctoring of a quotation from Katz’s 2020 article and statements such as, “[Katz] seems not to regard people like me [a Black professor] as essential features, or persons, of Princeton” and “[Katz’s views are] fundamentally incompatible with our mission and values as educators.” I believe that Eisgruber is the first university president in America to impose what might be called the Joseph McCarthy interpretation of the First Amendment.

Second, Eisgruber’s claim that he has the ability and indeed the obligation to deny the official complainants the right to know how the university reached its decision to ignore the CCFA judgment has no justification in Princeton’s rules and regulations, and raises suspicions of a possible cover-up—an unavoidable impression Eisgruber evidently felt comfortable conveying. The unsupported claim of “additional fact-finding” is likewise impossible to understand. If additional facts were found, why is no one—neither the complainants nor the CCFA—permitted to see them or even know what they are?

These are not issues of “individual faculty members who are disappointed in the University’s decision not to pursue discipline against other employees,” as Eisgruber dismissively stated, but of free speech, academic freedom, fairness, and accountability. By empowering university bureaucrats to decide which members of the campus community are racist, which acts qualify as racism, what punishments are necessary, and which decisions cannot be appealed, Eisgruber appears to have one-upped the repugnant faculty letter of July 2020 demanding a committee to “oversee the investigation and discipline of racist behaviors, incidents, research, and publication on the part of faculty.” He has indeed constituted such a committee: not under the aegis of faculty itself, but under the menacing administrative Office of Institutional Equity and Diversity.

Come the revolution, those offices need to be abolished everywhere.

SORRY, IT IS INDEED A VERY SPECIAL BOOK PROMO: A very Special book promo and Vignettes by Luke, Mary Catelli and ‘Nother Mike.

OH NOES! WHO COULD HAVE FORESEEN THIS?  ‘Woke’ NYC Starbucks now a haven for junkies, drunks and homeless.

YET IT IS AN EXTREMELY LEFT-LEANING (AND DONATING) FIRM AND HIS PARTNERSHIP DISTRIBUTIONS ASSUREDLY ARE AFFECTED BY THEIR REPRESENTATION OF HUNTER:  Liz Cheney’s husband is a partner at the law firm defending Hunter Biden.

I GUESS HE DOESN’T REALIZE JOE DIDN’T ACTUALLY FOOL ANYONE, AND WE’RE P*SSED AS HELL?  Aussie Journalist Celebrates President Biden’s Climate Change Deception.

GEE, IF ONLY STUDENTS HADN’T MYSTERIOUSLY “LOST” NEARLY TWO YEARS OF EDUCATIONAL DEVELOPMENT:  Two-thirds of American teachers report feeling burned out: poll.

BEHOLD! MY SOCKED FACE:  Doomsday Climate Predictions Meltdown: Arctic Sea Ice Extent Reaches 12-Year Mid-August High.

WE KNOW THE CLIMATE CHANGES. WE JUST DON’T BELIEVE SOCIALISM STOPS IT:  The European Climate Megadrought – Which Happened 482 Years Ago.

ME? I THINK WE SHOULD AT THE VERY LEAST MAKE NATURAL-BORN PEOPLE TAKE THE CITIZENSHIP TEST, REGARDLESS OF PARENTAGE:  Re-opening the debate on birthright citizenship.

I WOULDN’T BET IT’S PEAK:  Peak Trump Derangement Syndrome.

I think they’re going to do something unfortunate…

ARE THEY DONE MESSING UP EVERYTHING ON EARTH, YET?  Biden administration to formulate new regulations governing in-space commercial activities.

I HEARD IT FROM RELIABLE SOURCES THAT IT’S — SOMEHOW — ALL TRUMP’S FAULT:  Iranian Media Hails Stabbing of Salman Rushdie, Condemned by Khomeini’s 1989 Death Fatwa.

August 14, 2022

RIP: Anne Heche dead at 53; actress removed from life support after organs harvested.

OPEN THREAD: Have fun, kids.

I’M NOT FILLED WITH CONFIDENCE: Harris says U.S. to update commercial space regulations.

Harris did not elaborate on specific regulatory issues the National Space Council will take up at its next meeting. However, one longstanding issue has been determining what agency or agencies will have responsibility for authorization and continuing supervision of commercial space activities required by Article 6 of the Outer Space Treaty. While those responsibilities are understood for existing industries like satellite communications and remote sensing, they are less clear for emerging commercial markets like space stations, satellite servicing and lunar missions.

“I applaud the vice president’s leadership to address the rules of the road for commercial space. Specifically, industry needs a clear and efficient process for providing continuing supervision of private sector activities as required by the Outer Space Treaty,” Mike Gold, executive vice president for civil space and external affairs at Redwire, told SpaceNews. “This process must encourage innovation while providing the government with the information necessary to preserve and protect the space environment.”

There have been previous efforts to address Article 6 oversight. The Obama administration pursued a “mission authorization” concept that would have been handled by the Federal Aviation Administration’s commercial space transportation office, but didn’t complete the effort before the end of the administration. The Trump administration moved to have that responsibility go to the Office of Space Commerce within the Department of Commerce, but made little progress.

The FAA isn’t crazy about regulating space (it thinks of itself as about airplanes), but like all bureaucracies it will fight bitterly to keep its responsibilities from being given to someone else.

FASTER, PLEASE: Clinical Trial Restored Sight to 20 People With Corneas Made From An Unlikely Source.

OKAY, GROOMER: “So even something this extreme couldn’t convince academics to overcome their knee-jerk instincts that anything said by a conservative is wrong.” “In 2006, Andersson founded ‘Destroyer Magazine’, a Swedish publication which sought to ‘to bring back the adolescent boy as one of the ideals of gay culture’. Wikipedia says it [features] ‘sexually suggestive shots of boys as young as 13.'”

THE LID: Even The Left Is Now Furious With Biden’s Most Inept Cabinet Member.

Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra’s inept leadership embodies the overall failed response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

President Joe Biden should fire him but will not because the White House runs on identity politics. Becerra, therefore, brings trivial “diversity” to the team, and they like that nonsense while Americans suffer.

Early in 2021, Biden drew criticism from woke Hispanic radicals who wanted more progressive Hispanics elevated to Cabinet positions. Biden panicked and assuaged the radicals, offering Becerra the vital job during a pandemic, despite the Californian being a lawyer with absolutely no executive or medical experience. Even Speaker Nancy Pelosi reportedly “had worked closely with Becerra in the House and viewed him as untrustworthy.”

Becerra rightly received zero confirmation votes from Republicans as every Democrat senator embarrassingly fell in line.

But now, even the mainstream media is irked.

Read the whole thing.

InstaPundit is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.