Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Benghazi "spectacularly worse" than Watergate

Roger L. Simon writes that with the release of the Rhodes email, Benghazi was "spectacularly worse" than Watergate.
so bad in fact that it has made a full investigation with an impeachment trial necessary for the protection of our republic.

The levels of criminality involved in this are mind-boggling. Everyone from Ben Rhodes to Hillary Clinton to Jay Carney to Susan Rice to Mike Morell to Barack Obama and on and on must explain themselves minute-by-minute. American “liberals” and their media consorts should search their souls. People died here.

Anyone who now considers Benghazi a “fake scandal” is either a complete liar or a moron. This new release of emails thanks to Judicial Watch is literally a call to arms. We will now see if there is even a figment of honesty in our mainstream media and if our elected representatives are to be trusted in any way.

It is our duty as citizens to put as much pressure on those representatives as possible to carry through this investigation to its natural conclusion — impeachment.
Read more here.

The Ten Commandments of the Democratic Party

Manhatten Infidel has posted the Ten Commandments of the Democratic Party.
These commandments, hallowed by antiquity and the 1960s have been the source of Democratic theology and moral law.
Here is a sneak peak into two of the Commandments:
Commandment Number Seven

You shall not steal. Let us do it for you. For the Lord, the Democratic Party, holds wealth redistribution to be sacred. And it’s not stealing when we do it.

Commandment Number Eight

You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. Unless he disagrees with the Lord, the Democratic Party. In which case you may call him a racist and boycott him and take away his livelihood.
Read the rest here.

"If you're having to tell people that you're steady and strong and resolute, chances are, you're not"

Thanks to Adrienne for reposting this video

Why was Ambassador Stevens in the Benghazi compound on 9-11?

Michael Brown, FEMA Director during George W. Bush's presidency, now has a radio talk show in Denver. I really like him. He has been saying that Ambassador Stevens was in that Bengahzi compound for a purpose on 9-11. What was that purpose, that is being covered up by the White House? Was he negotiating with al Qaeda to release the blind sheik?

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Extreme Finger Wagging

I agree with much of what Kareem Abdul Jabbar says in a Time Magazine opinion column about the Donald Sterling controversy.

He writes,
Moral outrage is exhausting. And dangerous. The whole country has gotten a severe case of carpal tunnel syndrome from the newest popular sport of Extreme Finger Wagging. Not to mention the neck strain from Olympic tryouts for Morally Superior Head Shaking

And now the poor guy’s girlfriend (undoubtedly ex-girlfriend now) is on tape cajoling him into revealing his racism. Man, what a winding road she led him down to get all of that out. She was like a sexy nanny playing “pin the fried chicken on the Sambo.” She blindfolded him and spun him around until he was just blathering all sorts of incoherent racist sound bites that had the news media peeing themselves with glee.

The making and release of this tape is so sleazy that just listening to it makes me feel like an accomplice to the crime. We didn’t steal the cake but we’re all gorging ourselves on it.

He’s just another jerk with more money than brains.

So, if we’re all going to be outraged, let’s be outraged that we weren’t more outraged when his racism was first evident. Let’s be outraged that private conversations between people in an intimate relationship are recorded and publicly played. Let’s be outraged that whoever did the betraying will probably get a book deal, a sitcom, trade recipes with Hoda and Kathie Lee, and soon appear on Celebrity Apprentice and Dancing with the Stars.

The big question is “What should be done next?” I hope Sterling loses his franchise. I hope whoever made this illegal tape is sent to prison. I hope the Clippers continue to be unconditionally supported by their fans. I hope the Clippers realize that the ramblings of an 80-year-old man jealous of his young girlfriend don’t define who they are as individual players or as a team. They aren’t playing for Sterling—they’re playing for themselves, for the fans, for showing the world that neither basketball, nor our American ideals, are defined by a few pathetic men or women.
Read more here.

"This is not your grandma's marijuana"

D o you see how similar this edible marijuana looks on the same plate as a Reese's Peanut Butter candy?

photo by Smart Colorado
Andrea Dukakis writes,
The head of the emergency room at one of Denver's largest hospitals says he's seeing more people being admitted after consuming large quantities of edible marijuana in the form of cookies or other foods.

Dr. Richard Zane, head of the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of Colorado Hospital, says the increase coincides with the legalization of recreational marijuana.

Dr. Zane says young, otherwise healthy adults are showing up at his emergency room agitated and anxious. He says some are hallucinating.

“They will say they see things or hear things that aren’t there," Zane says. "They see things on the wall or smell things.”

Dr. Zane says University Hospital is admitting about a person a day for pot-related problems, and most are linked to edibles. Likewise, other ER physicians at metro area hospitals, including Denver Health Medical Center, say they're seeing more patients reacting to edibles. So far those reports are anecdotal, but one study at Children's Hospital Colorado showed an increase in ER admissions for young children due to reactions to marijuana.

Dr. Richard Zane says the problem with edibles is they don’t take effect immediately, so often people continue eating them and ultimately take too much. Also, Zane says the drug isn’t always spread evenly through food or candy, so several people eating the same amounts can be ingesting different quantities of marijuana. And he says today's marijuana is grown differently than in years past, giving it a different effect than it used to.

Zane says legalization has added a certain legitimacy to using marijuana, which means inexperienced users are trying it.

"It’s [one] thing to say that one person who’s used marijuana before is gonna smoke a marijuana cigarette or eat one small piece of chocolate," says Zane. "It’s another thing when you have college students who are pretty naive who are sucking on a THC-infused lollipop and are psychotic for two or three days because they’ve never had this level of THC or this strength."

The Colorado General Assembly is considering several bills that deal with marijuana, including one measure (PDF) that would require makers of edibles to stamp, color or shape them with a standard symbol saying they contain marijuana, and that they're not for kids. The bill also restricts manufacturers from creating treats that can be reasonably mistaken for trademarked candies, a practice that is happening now.
Read more here.

Morris doubtful Christie can survive controversies

Dick Morris is doubtful that Chris Christie can win the Republican nomination. Morris gives three reasons. First is the fact that Christie's warm embrace of Obama during Hurricane Sandy tipped the scales with the 15% of voters who decided in the last 72 hours of the 2012 election who they were going to vote for. Of those who were undecided before the last 72 hours before Election Day, they broke 3 to 1 in favor of Obama in those final hours.

Second, the Bridgegate controversy raised other doubts about Christie, because of bullying and perhaps using traffic on the bridge to punish his political opponents. Third, Christie appointed a long-time friend to head the Port Authority. The New York Times has done investigative reporting, and others are following up with more investigations to see if the guy Christie appointed illegally profited from contracts awarded during his tenure.

Morris does not think Christie can survive the bad publicity from these three issues and become the Republican nominee. View his brief video here.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Kerry says Israel could become an apartheid state

Josh Rogin writes that
The secretary of state said that if Israel doesn’t make peace soon, it could become ‘an apartheid state,’ like the old South Africa. Jewish leaders are fuming over the comparison.

It wasn't the only controversial comment on the Middle East that Kerry made during his remarks to the Trilateral Commission, a recording of which was obtained by The Daily Beast. Kerry also repeated his warning that a failure of Middle East peace talks could lead to a resumption of Palestinian violence against Israeli citizens. He suggested that a change in either the Israeli or Palestinian leadership could make achieving a peace deal more feasible. He lashed out against Israeli settlement-building. And Kerry said that both Israeli and Palestinian leaders share the blame for the current impasse in the talks.

According to the 1998 Rome Statute, the “crime of apartheid” is defined as “inhumane acts… committed in the context of an institutionalized regime of systematic oppression and domination by one racial group over any other racial group or groups and committed with the intention of maintaining that regime.” The term is most often used in reference to the system of racial segregation and oppression that governed South Africa from 1948 until 1994.
Read more here.

Ted Cruz says Kerry should offer his resignation, and President Obama should accept it.

Thanking and focusing

Ann Voskamp writes today that
When we don’t focus on what we can thank God for, we can’t focus on living for God.

Thanks therapy is God’s prescription for joy.

Authentic thanks in all things is possible because our God is a God kneading all things together into a bread that sustains.
Read more here.

U.S. troops to Ukraine?

Dick Morris wants Obama to send 30,000 troops to the Ukraine. This, he says, would honor our 1994 treaty in which Ukraine gave up its stockpile of nuclear and other weapons in exchange for a promise from us to defend them. Morris says that if Obama does not do this, Putin will go into country after country, just like Hitler. What do you think? Watch the Morris video here.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

"Have a nice day"

Are they making fun of us? Do clerks in the stores where you live tell you to "Have a nice day?" Here in Colorado the common greeting is "How're you doing?" Or, "How's your day going?" I had not heard of World Order before seeing this video.

Thanks to Gerard at American Digest for reposting this video.

Another unforeseen consequence of legalization of marijuana

The store where I work part-time has been trying for a few months now to hire some new employees. I have been told that applicants have been unable to pass the drug test. I am going to look into this further and ask some of the managers. This could be another unforeseen effect of legalization of marijuana. It is taking a toll on those of us who can pass the drug test! In the good ole' days before legalization of marijuana, all our store had to do was post a small sign in the front window, and we would get a number of highly qualified applicants. Now, two full months have gone by with barely anyone who can qualify.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

A Congressional candidate who reads Bastiat

Mia Love won the GOP primary in Utah this week for Congress from the suburbs of Salt Lake City. Glenn Reynolds did this interview with her in 2012.

He'll just save up and get it later

Thanks to Ann Voskamp for linking to this video.

What is beauty?

Thanks to Ann Voskamp for reposting this video.

Set your sights high!

Yesterday I met a young boy. I asked him his age. He answered, "Seven." I asked him what grade he was in. He answered, "First grade." Then, he added excitedly, "In seven more years I won't be in the first grade any more!"

His mom explained that she and he had just been having a conversation about how many years it would be before he would be going to a new school.

Every praise!

Every praise is to our God!

Thanks to Ann Voskamp for postng this.

You've got something...I'll take you, and you take me.

This was their finest hour

America in inevitable decline? Remember this: decline is a choice. Surrender is a choice. Cowardice is a choice. Fear is a choice. So is Rebirth, Resistance, Courage, and Hope.

Friday, April 25, 2014

On the misuse of words

Capitalism versus progressivism

Kevin Williamson writes,
We treat the physical results of capitalism as though they were an inevitability. In 1955, no captain of industry, prince, or potentate could buy a car as good as a Toyota Camry, to say nothing of a 2014 Mustang, the quintessential American Everyman’s car. But who notices the marvel that is a Toyota Camry? In the 1980s, no chairman of the board, president, or prime minister could buy a computer as good as the cheapest one for sale today at Best Buy. In the 1950s, American millionaires did not have access to the quality and variety of food consumed by Americans of relatively modest means today, and the average middle-class household spent a much larger share of its income buying far inferior groceries. Between 1973 and 2008, the average size of an American house increased by more than 50 percent, even as the average number of people living in it declined. Things like swimming pools and air conditioning went from being extravagances for tycoons and movie stars to being common or near-universal. In his heyday, Howard Hughes didn’t have as good a television as you do, and the children of millionaires for generations died from diseases that for your children are at most an inconvenience. As the first 199,746 or so years of human history show, there is no force of nature ensuring that radical material progress happens as it has for the past 250 years. Technological progress does not drive capitalism; capitalism drives technological progress — and most other kinds of progress, too.

The farther away we move from the physical economy into the manipulation of symbols through public policy, the more progressive ideas make apparent sense. And symbolism is more comfortable for progressives in general, owing to a disinclination to literally get their hands dirty. There is, for example, no environmentally clean way to produce energy, and the really productive ways of producing energy — like fracking for gas in Pennsylvania — give them the fantods. There is no environmentally clean way to build a man a house, either, or provide him with clean drinking water, or to heat that house, or to grow a crop of wheat, or to make that wheat into bread. If you think you can have health care and electric cars without steel mills and oil refineries, you are mistaken. But actually expanding physical production within our own political boundaries, for instance by building more pipelines to connect petroleum producers with petroleum refiners, scandalizes the progressives. Every smokestack is another Barad-dûr to them — even as they bemoan the loss of “good factory jobs,” the largely mythical former prevalence of which provided their political forebears with a deep bucket of solutions to throw at the problem of potentially bumptious poor people. They detest the economic use of undeveloped lands, whether for energy or timber or grazing cattle — as though beef comes from Trader Joe’s. They refuse to understand that if you want more oranges and apples, you have to plant some trees — maybe even cutting down some other trees to make room for them, or, angels and ministers of grace defend us, harassing a tortoise in the process.
Read more here.

Epic hypocrisy

John Hinderaker at Powerline blows to bits the hypocrisy of top Democrat donor Tom Steyer.
Billionaire hedge fund operator and “green” energy magnate Tom Steyer has pledged $100 million in the 2014 election cycle to help Democratic candidates who oppose the Keystone pipeline and who favor “green” energy over fossil fuels. Steyer claims to be a man of principle who has no financial interest in the causes he supports, but acts only for the public good. That is a ridiculous claim: Steyer is the ultimate rent-seeker who depends on government connections to produce subsidies and mandates that make his “green” energy investments profitable. He also is, or was until recently, a major investor in Kinder Morgan, which is building a competitor to the Keystone pipeline. Go here, here, here, here, here and here for more information about how Steyer uses his political donations and consequent connections to enhance his already vast fortune.

But Steyer’s hypocrisy goes still deeper. Today, he is a bitter opponent of fossil fuels, especially coal. That fits with his current economic interests: banning coal-fired power plants will boost the value of his solar projects. But it was not always thus. In fact, Steyer owes his fortune in large part to the fact that he has been one of the world’s largest financers of coal projects. Tom Steyer was for coal before he was against it.
Read much more here.

Internet-enabled intimacy

Are you getting your needs for human connections met? Are you craving real human interaction? Jason Tanz writes about the new "sharing economy."
The sharing economy has come on so quickly and powerfully that regulators and economists are still grappling to understand its impact. But one consequence is already clear: Many of these companies have us engaging in behaviors that would have seemed unthinkably foolhardy as recently as five years ago. We are hopping into strangers’ cars (Lyft, Sidecar, Uber), welcoming them into our spare rooms (Airbnb), dropping our dogs off at their houses (DogVacay, Rover), and eating food in their dining rooms (Feastly). We are letting them rent our cars (RelayRides, Getaround), our boats (Boatbound), our houses (HomeAway), and our power tools (Zilok). We are entrusting complete strangers with our most valuable possessions, our personal experiences—and our very lives. In the process, we are entering a new era of Internet-enabled intimacy.

This is not just an economic breakthrough. It is a cultural one, enabled by a sophisticated series of mechanisms, algorithms, and finely calibrated systems of rewards and punishments. It’s a radical next step for the ­person-to-person marketplace pioneered by eBay: a set of digi­tal tools that enable and encourage us to trust our fellow human beings.

In the sharing economy, we aren’t anonymous. We may not meet our trading partners face-to-face, as in the RelayRides example. But because our transactions are often linked through our Facebook accounts—some version of our real identities—we are dealing, even virtually, with real people. It’s a digital re-­creation of the neighborly interactions that defined pre-­industrial society. Except that now our neighbor is anyone with a Facebook account.
Read more here.

Concealed carry

The teen in the photo above was arrested for driving with a suspended license. A routine search of her in the jail revealed that she was carrying
a loaded, five-shot, four-inch .22 caliber mini-revolver concealed in Archer's vagina. It turns out that the gun was stolen last year when John Souther's car was "ransacked" in an auto burglary, cops said.

Souther, a 70-year-old retired car salesman, told TSG that he'd make sure to give his stolen "little fellow... a bath in bleach.”

Archer was charged with gun possession and introducing contraband into a penal facility, and was later released on $6,000 bond, according to Gawker.
Read more here.

Who is Harry Reid?

Victor Davis Hanson writes,
Part Tammany Hall–style fixer, part pre–civil rights Democrat, and part demagogic Joe McCarthy, Harry Reid is a throwback to a type of American politics better left forgotten.

Reid’s viciousness also serves as a deterrent. Why tangle with the anything-goes Reid when it means endlessly replying to a litany of smears?
Read more here.

That pesky fourth Amendment

The Department of Justice doesn't want to obey the Fourth Amendment. It wants to be able to search your mobile phone without getting a warrant. Read more here.

Dangerous document

robby Soave writes:
Two students are suing the University of Hawaii for violating their First Amendment rights after administrator prevented them from distributing copies of the U.S. Constitution — demonstrating a frightening lack of knowledge about the very legal document they were attempting to censor.

Students Merritt Burch and Anthony Vizzone, members of the Young Americans for Liberty chapter at UH-Hilo, were prevented from handing out copies of the Constitution at a recruitment event in January. A week later, they were again informed by a censorship-minded administrator that their First Amendment-protected activities were in violation of school policy.

The students were told that they could only distribute literature from within UH-Hilo’s “free speech zone,” a small, muddy, frequently-flooded area on the edge of campus.
Read more here.

John McCain is hard-pressed

How does John McCain feel about Hillary Clinton? Here is what he had to say this week:
"From her years of service as first lady, in the U.S. Senate and the State Department, one would be hard-pressed to find a leader with Secretary Clinton's informed perspective on the many challenges facing America across the globe," McCain said.

Philip Rucker writes,
Clinton, a prospective 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, will appear on stage Saturday with McCain at the Sedona Forum, an annual ideas festival hosted by the McCain Institute for International Leadership at Arizona State University. Clinton is among the national and international business leaders, philanthropists and public figures appearing at the gathering, held in Sedona, the tony red-rocks oasis in Arizona's Verde Valley.
Read more here.

We are ready to act!

John Kerry talks tough:

Are we taking care of our souls?

“The most important thing in your life,” Dallas Willard said, “is not what you do; it’s who you become. That’s what you will take into eternity. You are an unceasing spiritual being with an eternal destiny in God’s great universe. Your soul is not just something that lives on after your body dies. It’s the most important thing about you. It is your life.”

Are you the captain of your soul? No, says John Ortberg.
No, I am its keeper, not its captain. I did not make it, and I cannot save it from death.

That’s why soul-care is a different task than self-care. I do not care for my soul only for my own sake. It is only mine on loan, and it is coming due soon.

In the ancient Middle East, trees were rare. Rain was scarce. Deserts were plentiful. But if a tree were planted by a river, it was no longer dependent on uncertain weather or the surface condition of the soil. It could flourish at all times because its roots allowed the water to stream into each part of the tree to bring it life. You couldn’t see the roots, but no one could miss the green leaves or fresh fruit.

Our soul is like an inner stream of water that gives strength, direction, and harmony to every other area of life.

We will always take the most care of that which we value most deeply.

We beat up on ourselves or worse, on others. We may find temporary relief from that, but the soul still cries for attention.

The next time you blow something — when you’re frightened, when you’re dissatisfied — instead of mindless self-talk, speak to your soul: “Why are you afraid, O my soul?”

At first it might seem a little silly, but remember, you are the keeper of your soul. Only you.

Not long ago I got really angry at somebody. Finally I literally stopped in my tracks because I was so immersed in anger and said, “Soul, why are you so angry?”

Something interesting happened. I found that I just began to pray, and it was like God saying to me, “John, you are not your anger.” It’s like my soul had a place to stand with God, and we could talk sensibly about my anger, even as it ebbed from my soul.
Read more here.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Where the Palestinian factions learned to work together

You have probably heard about the agreement signed yesterday by the top leadership of Fatah and Hamas to reunite their parties. Do you know where these groups learned to work together? In Israeli prisons. Ben Hattem writes a one-sided article here about what he describes as brutal conditions in Israeli prisons.

A deceitful man who abused children

What do you do after you are convicted of six counts of molestation of children and serve 90 days in jail? You embark
on a new life — teaching, coaching, and supervising the children of diplomats and military families in far-flung parts of the world.
You drug and sexually abuse at least 90 children from Managua to London. then, when you find out that the F.B.I. is on your trail, you commit suicide.
Read more here.

Risible fiction

Ace asks rhetorically:
For how much longer does the childish media insist on maintaining this risible fiction that they are not Democratic propagandists?

Time to turn Harry out to pasture

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Governor Rick Perry gives his views on hot topics of the day

Texas Governor Rick Perry is interviewed here by Stuart Varney. The interview covers immigration, BLM, competing with other states for jobs, and a presidential bid in 2016 by Perry.

Is our federal government moving us toward electrical grid failure?

Steve Goreham writes,
Environmental policies established by Congress and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are moving us toward electrical grid failure. The capacity reserve margin for hot or cold weather events is shrinking in many regions. According to Philip Moeller, Commissioner of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, “the experience of this past winter indicates that the power grid is now already at the limit.”

EPA policies, such as the Mercury and Air Toxics rule and the Section 316 Cooling Water Rule, are forcing the closure of many coal-fired plants, which provided 39 percent of U.S. electricity last year.

In addition to shrinking reserve margin, electricity prices are becoming less stable. Natural gas-fired plants are replacing many of the closing coal-fired facilities. Gas powered 27 percent of US electricity in 2013, up from 18 percent a decade earlier. When natural gas is plentiful, its price is competitive with that of coal fuel.

But natural gas is not stored on plant sites like coal. When electrical and heating demand spiked in January, gas was in short supply. Gas prices soared by a factor of twenty, from $5 per million BTU to over $100 per million BTU. Consumers were subsequently shocked by utility bills several times higher than in previous winters.

On top of existing regulations, the EPA is pushing for carbon dioxide emissions standards for power plants, as part of the “fight” against human-caused climate change. If enacted, these new regulations will force coal-fired plants to either close or add expensive carbon capture and storage technology. This EPA crusade against global warming continues even though last winter was the coldest U.S. winter since 1911-1912.
Read more here.

Have we been infantilizing young Americans?

Camille Paglia writes an opinion column in Time Magazine in which she laments our national minimum drinking age.
It is absurd and unjust that young Americans can vote, marry, enter contracts, and serve in the military at 18 but cannot buy an alcoholic drink in a bar or restaurant. The age 21 rule sets the United States apart from all advanced Western nations and lumps it with small or repressive countries like Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Indonesia, Qatar, Oman, and the United Arab Emirates.

What this cruel 1984 law did is deprive young people of safe spaces where they could happily drink cheap beer, socialize, chat, and flirt in a free but controlled public environment. Hence in the 1980s we immediately got the scourge of crude binge drinking at campus fraternity keg parties, cut off from the adult world. Women in that boorish free-for-all were suddenly fighting off date rape. Club drugs — Ecstasy, methamphetamine, ketamine (a veterinary tranquilizer) — surged at raves for teenagers and on the gay male circuit scene.

Alcohol relaxes, facilitates interaction, inspires ideas, and promotes humor and hilarity. Used in moderation, it is quickly flushed from the system, with excess punished by a hangover. But deadening pills, such as today’s massively overprescribed anti-depressants, linger in body and brain and may have unrecognized long-term side effects. Those toxic chemicals, often manufactured by shadowy firms abroad, have been worrisomely present in a recent uptick of unexplained suicides and massacres.

As a libertarian, I support the decriminalization of marijuana, but there are many problems with pot. From my observation, pot may be great for jazz musicians and Beat poets, but it saps energy and will-power and can produce physiological feminization in men. Also, it is difficult to measure the potency of plant-derived substances like pot. With brand-name beer or liquor, however, purchased doses have exactly the same strength and purity from one continent to another, with no fear of contamination by dangerous street additives like PCP.

Alcohol’s enhancement of direct face-to-face dialogue is precisely what is needed by today’s technologically agile generation, magically interconnected yet strangely isolated by social media. Clumsy hardcore sexting has sadly supplanted simple hanging out over a beer at a buzzing dive. By undermining the art of conversation, the age 21 law has also had a disastrous effect on our arts and letters, with their increasing dullness and mediocrity. This tyrannical infantilizing of young Americans must stop!
Read more here

Aborted babies incinerated in Oregon waste-to-energy facility to provide electricity

The Covanta Marion waste-to-energy facility in Oregon that incinerates British Columbia "medical waste," including aborted babies.

The British Columbia Health Ministry has admitted that the remains of babies destroyed by abortion in B.C. facilities are ending up in a waste-to-power facility in the United States, providing electricity for residents of Oregon.

The province’s Health Ministry said in an email to the B.C. Catholic that “biomedical waste” shipped to the U.S. to be incinerated includes “human tissue, such as surgically removed cancerous tissue, amputated limbs, and fetal tissue.”

“The ministry understands that some is transferred to Oregon. There it is incinerated in a waste-to-energy plant,” the email stated.
Read more here.

More research on marijuana health dangers

From Yahoo News U.K.:
Young adults who smoke marijuana may be at risk for serious or even fatal heart problems, according to a study by French researchers on Wednesday.

The findings in the Journal of the American Heart Association raises new concerns about the safety of marijuana, just as many parts of the world are relaxing laws on its use and medicinal marijuana is gaining popularity for treating certain health conditions.

The analysis also found that the percentage of reported cardiovascular complications more than tripled from 2006 to 2010.

"The general public thinks marijuana is harmless, but information revealing the potential health dangers of marijuana use needs to be disseminated to the public, policymakers and healthcare providers," said lead author Emilie Jouanjus, a medical faculty member at the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Toulouse in Toulouse, France.

"There is now compelling evidence on the growing risk of marijuana-associated adverse cardiovascular effects, especially in young people," Jouanjus said.

Doctors should be aware of the heart risks and consider marijuana use as a potential contributor to cardiovascular disease in some patients, said Jouanjus.

People with pre-existing conditions appeared most vulnerable, the study added.

Valentin Fuster, director of Mount Sinai Heart and Physician-in-Chief of The Mount Sinai Hospital, said the study appeared to support some observations he has made at his own clinic in New York City.

"I am concerned about cannabis because we are running a clinic of young people who come to us with coronary artery disease. I have seen a number of cases in whom I was not able to identify any other risk other than the use of cannabis," said Fuster, who was not involved in the research.

"So I think this registry in France supports the issue that cannabis is not free of danger," he added.
Read more here.

"For crying out loud, secure it!"

From ABC News in Denver:

Two Colorado fourth graders were busted for selling marijuana at their elementary school, prompting officials today to urge adults to keep their weed locked away from kids.

School officials said a 10-year-old fourth grade boy brought a small quantity of leafy marijuana to Monfort Elementary School in Greeley, Colorado, on Monday.

“He sold it to three other fourth graders on the school playground, which resulted in a profit to the young man of $11,” John Gates, director of safety and security for the Greeley-Evans School District, told ABC News.

The next day, Gates said one of the three young buyers brought a marijuana edible to school and gave it to the boy who sold the pot on Monday. That boy took a bite, but did not suffer any ill effects, Gates said.

Both boys apparently got the weed from relatives, according to Gates.

“Both of these kids took the marijuana without the consent of their grandparents,” said Gates.

“We know that many adults have greater access to marijuana since the change in the drug’s legal status in Colorado,” Sheldon wrote. “We urge all parents, grandparents and anyone who cares for children to treat marijuana as you would prescription drugs, alcohol or even firearms. This drug is potentially lethal to children, and should always be kept under lock and key, away from young people.”

The side effects of edible marijuana – which can be far more potent than smoking a joint – have been raising new concerns after two recent deaths in Colorado. In one, a 19-year old college student died when he jumped off a hotel balcony after eating a marijuana-laced cookie. In the second, Richard Kirk, 47, was charged with shooting and killing his wife while she called 9-1-1, telling police her husband had consumed pot-infused candy.

Colorado’s legislature is currently considering new safety regulations for marijuana edibles, including bills requiring stronger warning labels and lowering the amount of THC permitted in food.
Read more here.

Tell it as it is!

Roger L. Simon writes,
To begin with, time for Republican fat cats to realize that the media and Hollywood are really really important and open their wallets big time to change the playing field. (They’ll also make money in the process, because that’s where there’s a giant under-served audience.) Entertainment media are where minds are formed, especially those low-information voters everyone talks about incessantly. Hate the media and Hollywood all you want, but until you take them over and/or co-opt them, things are only going to get worse — you can bank on it.

Fox News is fine, but it preaches primarily to the choir. Something more is needed to do outreach to the middle of America. The Wall Street Journal, great as it is, and it is great, is only on the right on its editorial pages. There are no large newspapers in the entire country with a reporting staff tilting right. Think about that — no significant investigative reporting on the right. (Well, a few folks at Fox like Catherine Herridge and Sharyl Attkisson, recently canned by the court eunuchs at CBS.) This has to change.

We could even be stealthy about it. It’s not necessary to trumpet who we are. We just have to do it. If the Alinskyites can disguise themselves, we can too. In fact, it should be easier for us because we have truth, honor and justice on our side. We don’t have to broadcast we are conservatives or any other name. We just have to tell it as it is. How about starting today?

Conscious Coupling

Ann Voskamp writes today about Conscious Coupling.
It’s our Conscious Commitment that keeps us from unconsciously uncoupling.

Conscious Conversation —- you take the one second longer to make sure our eyes linger when we’re talking.
Conscious Serving — you take the two seconds longer to make the bed. I take the 5 seconds longer to rub the back of your neck at the end of the day.
Conscious Gratitude — you take just a moment to thank me for dinner, I take just a moment after the kids are in bed to thank you for helping us get through. We take a moment, many, to bite our tongues and not grumble, a moment to bravely focus on gifts.
Conscious Affection — and we take the 10 seconds longer to let go of everything else and to just give each other the ministry of presence, the longing of the slowing kiss.

The Conscious Coupling of the The 10 Second Kiss for Wedded Bliss. [ #10SecKissVow ]
Read more here.

Thanks British Pathe!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

He liked being a Marine

Mustang brings us a speech by Colonel Mike Lowe, a Marine who passed away this month.
So what is it that I like about Marines? This is the easy part!

I like the fact that you always know were you stand with a Marine! With Marines, there is no middle ground or gray area. There are only missions, objectives, and facts.

I like the fact that if you are a self-declared enemy of America, that running into a Marine outfit in combat is your worst nightmare, and that your health record is about to get a lot thicker or be closed out entirely!

I like the fact that Marines are steadfast and consistent in everything they do. Regardless of whether you agree with them or not; that Marines hold the term “politically correct” with nothing but pure disdain; that Marines stand tall and rigid in their actions, thoughts and deeds when others bend with the direction of the wind and are as confused as a dog looking at a ceiling fan!

I like the fact that each and every Marine considers the honor and legacy of the Corps as his personal and sacred trust to protect and defend.

I like the fact that most civilians don’t have a clue what makes us tick! And that’s not a bad thing. Because if they did, it would scare the hell out of them! I like the fact that others say they want to be like us, but don’t have what it takes in the “pain-gain-pride” department to make it happen.

I like the fact that the Marines came into being in a bar, Tun Tavern, and that Marines still gather in pubs, bars and slop chutes to share sea stories and hot scoop.

I like our motto: Semper Fidelis, and the fact that we don’t shed it when the going gets tough, the battlefield gets deadly or when we hang up our uniform for the last time. I like the fact that Marines take care of each other: in combat and in time of peace.

I like the fact that Marines consider the term “Marines take care of their own” as meaning we will give up our very life for our fellow Marines, if necessary. 

I like the fact that Marines know the difference between “chicken salad” and “chicken shit” and aren’t afraid to call either for what it is! I like the fact that Marines have never failed the people of America and that we don’t use the words “can’t,” “retreat,” or “lose.”

I like the fact that the people of America hold Marines in the highest esteem and that they know that they can count of us to locate close with and destroy those who would harm them!
Read more here.

What is the democratic perspective on terrorism?

1. Nadal Hasan murders 14 people at Fort Hood While screaming “Allahu Akbar!” Not a terrorist.

2. American citizens come together and, without firing a shot, protect a Nevada rancher from Federal Agencies who assaulted his family, killed his cattle, and destroyed his equipment. These are the people Democrats consider “domestic terrorists.”

I am reasonably confident King George III considered George Washington, Patrick Henry, and Thomas Jefferson to be “domestic terrorists,” too.

UPDATE (from Jeff): V makes a great point about the Democrats’ penchant for calling their (political) opponents terrorists, which GP has before documented with links (e.g., here and here).

Basically, left-wing Democrats want an obtrusive Big Government, to pay for their lives/mistakes and to punish anyone whom they have ever envied. Someone who stands for traditional citizens’ liberties under a smaller, less oppressive Federal government will simply terrify them. And is, therefore and to them, “a terrorist”.
Found here

Out of weakness or strength?

Gordon Chang writes,
China, after the biggest boom in history, is heading into what could end up as the biggest debt crisis in history.

And why are China's severe economic problems relevant to us? Because for more than three decades the Communist Party has primarily based its legitimacy on the continual delivery of prosperity. And without prosperity, the only remaining basis of legitimacy is nationalism.

Naval Marines of China's People's Liberation Army. (Image source: U.S. Marine Corps)

China's militant nationalism is creating friction in an arc of nations from India in the south to South Korea in the north. Let us focus on the Philippines and Japan.

There has been a noticeable increase in the tempo of China's territorial incursions during the last year. This uptick has generally coincided with the elevation of Xi Jinping as China's new ruler in November 2012.

I believe we should be careful speaking of "Beijing this" or "Beijing that," but should be looking instead at the factional messiness inside the Communist Party and realizing that the People's Liberation Army is now the Party's most powerful faction.

Xi became China's supreme leader because he appealed to all factions, in large part because he had no faction. He was, in short, the least unacceptable candidate. And because he still has no identifiable faction, he cannot afford to offend the generals and admirals, who, in my view have been driving the bus for some time.

And this leads us to the central question in Sino-U.S. ties today: How are we going to develop good relations with a China that, out of weakness or strength, is roiling the world?

Chinese leaders do not distrust us because they have insufficient contact with us. They distrust us because they see themselves as the protector of an ideology threatened by free societies.

The second thing we get wrong about China is that we believe that it is safe to ignore periodic Chinese threats to incinerate our cities and wage war on us, like the reports that appeared in state media in October 2013 boasting how Chinese submarines can launch missiles with nuclear warheads that can kill tens of millions of Americans.

Bad things happen when your adversary does not respect you.

The third thing we get wrong about China is that we think is it inadvisable to call the Chinese out in public.

Let us all remember, World War II started not on the plains of Europe in 1939 but near Beijing two years before.

We live in an era defined by the absence of major war, but this peace may not last. At this moment, we do not know whether a Chinese political system in turmoil will drive the country to become the aggressor of the 21st century, but we should be prepared.

We live in consequential times.
Read more here.

What a sweetheart!

The Admonished People

Fred Reed just returned home to Mexico from a trip to Washington D.C., which he describes as
these days a cross between asylum for the chronically paranoid, besieged city, and kindergarten run by a totalitarian Mommy. Cops everywhere, metal detectors everywhere else, concrete stop’em-bombs on sidewalks, pop-up metal barriers on streets on Capitol Hill. Bin Laden won, big time.

We are the Admonished People. Free? No. Brave? No. Watched, warned, told, herded, yes. Urban robots.
Read more here.

So what?

Fred on Everything admits that he is a racist.
As nearly as I can tell, a racist is one who approves of rigorous education, good English, civilized manners, minimal criminality, and responsible parenthood, among other things. I am, then, a racist. I see no reason to grovel about it.

Humans like to be among their own kind. This can mean many things. It can be political. In Washington, white liberals cheerlead for diversity while spending their time exclusively with white liberals and execrating Southerners, Jesus Creepers, genocidal conservatives (understood to mean all conservatives), Catholics, racists, owners of guns, rednecks, and so on. No dissenting voices are heard because, like conservatives, liberals choose to be among their own. Similarly, if in any of Washington’s dives you know that one person in a table of six has an IQ in excess 130, it is a good bet that all do. It isn’t snobbery. Smart people enjoy the company of smart people. Their own kind. So what?

As a white American of European extraction, I too want to preserve my culture. This involves (or did) respect for law, studiousness, the production of children within marriage, self-reliance, honesty, sexual restraint, and so on.
Read more here.

The devil's greatest trick

Foseti reviews Moldbug's Unqualified Reservations, in which Moldbug makes the point that
And what are “multiculturalism” and “diversity” but religious tests for office?
Progressivism is a nontheistic Christian sect. Progressives are ultraCalvinists who believe in:
1. The universal brotherhood of man – i.e. equality

2. The futility of violence – i.e. peace

3. The fair distribution of goods – i.e. social justice

4. The managed society – i.e. community run by benevolent experts

Moldbug writes,
If you have a rule that says the state cannot be taken over by a church, a constant danger in any democracy for obvious reasons, the obvious mutation to circumvent this defense is for the church to find some plausible way of denying that it’s a church. Dropping theology is a no-brainer.

Moldbug writes a series on Richard Dawkins. Foseti writes,
The series begins by treating progressivism as a sort of infection of the mind. Assume progressivism is a virus that is solely concerned with spreading itself into as many minds as possible. We see the idea’s evolution, in which it starts as a fundamentalist religious belief and ends up discarding theism so as to better propagate itself in an officially secular system of government. Shed of overt theism, Progressivism “can be propagated by American official institutions, which are constitutionally prohibited from endorsing its ancestor or competitor [ie theistic Christianity].” The devil’s greatest trick . . . and so on.

Just say, “I’m an atheist, I’m an atheist, I’m an atheist.” And no one will ever be able to accuse you of being a religious fanatic, at least not without substantial preparatory explanation. What more perfect cover story for an actual religious fanatic?
Read more here.

Asteroids have caused dozens of nuclear-sized explosions since 2000

The Guardian reports that
Asteroids caused 26 nuclear-scale explosions in the Earth's atmosphere between 2000 and 2013, a new report reveals.

Some were more powerful – in one case, dozens of times stronger – than the atom bomb blast that destroyed Hiroshima in 1945 with an energy yield equivalent to 16 kilotons of TNT.

Most occurred too high in the atmosphere to cause any serious damage on the ground. But the evidence was a sobering reminder of how vulnerable the Earth was to the threat from space, scientists said.

The impacts were recorded by the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organisation, which operates a global network of sensors set up to detect nuclear weapon detonations. None of the asteroids were picked up or tracked in advance by any space- or Earth-based observatory.
Read more here.

“If you can’t tell the difference, how could a three-year-old?”

“Many people are surprised to learn that marijuana intoxication results in about 450,000 emergency room admissions a year,” said Kevin Sabet, executive director of Smart Approaches to Marijuana, in a statement. “A psychotic break is not so uncommon among this population.

After two deaths related to psychotic breaks, colorado lawmakers passed legislation Monday in the House of Representatives to
set possession limits for concentrated forms of marijuana such as hash oil, and to make cookies, candy and other foods infused with pot more easily identifiable.

“Depending on your body type, edibles can take up to two hours to fully take effect. Be careful; start with a single 10 mg serving or less, and don’t take more until you wait at least two hours. Most importantly, keep edibles far away from children and pets,” said Michael Elliott, executive director of the Marijuana Industry Group, in a statement.

But industry officials aren’t thrilled with the edibles bill, which will require the state Department of Revenue to adopt rules by Jan. 1, 2016, that require edible retail pot products “to be shaped, stamped, colored, or otherwise marked with a standard symbol indicating that it contains marijuana and is not for consumption by children.”

During a committee hearing, proponents brought paper cups with pot-infused gummy bears and other candies that looked like the real thing. Each piece may contain up to 10 mg of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.

“If you can’t tell the difference, how could a three-year-old?” said Republican state Rep. Frank McNulty.
Read more here.

Our middle class is no longer the world's most affluent

Drudge links to an article in the New York Times showing that the middle class in America is no longer the world's most affluent middle class. Canada has caught up, and probably surpassed the U.S., and Sweden is right there, too.
“The idea that the median American has so much more income than the middle class in all other parts of the world is not true these days,” said Lawrence Katz, a Harvard economist who is not associated with LIS. “In 1960, we were massively richer than anyone else. In 1980, we were richer. In the 1990s, we were still richer.”

That is no longer the case, Professor Katz added.

Median per capita income was $18,700 in the United States in 2010 (which translates to about $75,000 for a family of four after taxes), up 20 percent since 1980 but virtually unchanged since 2000, after adjusting for inflation. The same measure, by comparison, rose about 20 percent in Britain between 2000 and 2010 and 14 percent in the Netherlands. Median income also rose 20 percent in Canada between 2000 and 2010, to the equivalent of $18,700.

The most recent year in the LIS analysis is 2010. But other income surveys, conducted by government agencies, suggest that since 2010 pay in Canada has risen faster than pay in the United States and is now most likely higher. Pay in several European countries has also risen faster since 2010 than it has in the United States.

Three broad factors appear to be driving much of the weak income performance in the United States. First, educational attainment in the United States has risen far more slowly than in much of the industrialized world over the last three decades, making it harder for the American economy to maintain its share of highly skilled, well-paying jobs.

Americans between the ages of 55 and 65 have literacy, numeracy and technology skills that are above average relative to 55- to 65-year-olds in rest of the industrialized world, according to a recent study by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, an international group. Younger Americans, though, are not keeping pace: Those between 16 and 24 rank near the bottom among rich countries, well behind their counterparts in Canada, Australia, Japan and Scandinavia and close to those in Italy and Spain.
Read more here.

Obama lawyers up

Hey, he saved the Clintons, why not bring him on to quell the coming legal troubles faced by the Obama team?
President Obama on Monday said he has selected W. Neil Eggleston to become chief counsel, adding the expertise of a veteran attorney who was involved in some of the most heated legal battles of the Clinton administration. Eggleston worked as a White House lawyer under Clinton, handling politically explosive issues like the Whitewater controversy, and later represented the former president during the investigation into the Monica Lewinsky affair.
Read more here.
Thanks to Instapundit for linking to The Hill.

When I'm gone...That's when it's gonna happen!

I am not gonna be the governor who's gonna tell our children that marijuana use is okay, because it's not!

While I like what Christie is saying in this video, I am reminded of what my blogging friend at Fuzzy Logic had to say about Christie three months ago:
Principles matter to me, and I will not stand by someone whom I deem to be unworthy of my support. And Chris Christie embodies everything that I cannot stand about Obama: he uses his power to “punish his enemies,” he’s petty, spiteful, mean-spirited, nasty, and thin-skinned. There is nothing admirable about Christie, nothing. And for those who think his firing and “holding accountable” his staff members is laudable, let me just remind you that they did not “go rogue” any more than the IRS agents did under Obama. They’re merely new bumps under the heartless, egocentric Christie’s bus. Bumps that will pile up just as surely as they did under Obama’s bus . . . or perhaps to be redistributed in his administration.

Moving right along. Nothing to see here.

Who is this woman?

Her name is Mary Willingham. She is a whistleblower. She was tutoring student athletes an the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Paul M. Barrett writes,
A former tutor to top Tar Heel athletes, Willingham helped reveal that the university had for years steered football and basketball players into fake classes that never met. She said that she and other academic advisers did so as a way of keeping the athletes eligible to play. The former chairman of UNC’s black-studies department is under criminal indictment in connection with the scandal.

North Carolina has acknowledged—and apologized for—the corruption but insists that it was “academic” in nature, rather than “athletic.” That distinction has apparently held sway with the National Collegiate Athletic Association, which so far has declined to investigate the goings on in Chapel Hill. An NCAA investigation could lead to questions about the legitimacy of the university’s national men’s basketball championships in 2005 and 2009.

The flames just rose again beneath the $16 billion-a-year college sports industry’s scandal du jour. Mary Willingham, the academic-fraud whistleblower at the University of North Carolina, announced her resignation from the prestigious Chapel Hill, N.C., campus.

Willingham confirmed her imminent departure after an hour-long meeting with Carol Folt, the university’s chancellor. UNC described the encounter as “productive,” but Willingham indicated it had been acrimonious.
Read more here.
Thanks to Instapundit for linking to this story.

It's about the land.

Here is a video by a man who calls himself the Anonymous Patriot. He has done some homework on the situation in Nevada. He believes it's about the land. The town of Mesquite plans to use the land as a business loop. Cliven Bundy is in the way. The video starts with 50 seconds of bad music, but then gets pretty informative, so hang in there.

Monday, April 21, 2014

The Abundance Revolution

James P. Pinkerton writes a very clever article about the origins of the Abundance Revolution. The article pretends that it is the year 2064, and he is looking back at the pivotal year 2014. What happened in 2014? Fracking technology, and the revelation that the United States
possessed greater energy reserves than Saudi Arabia, China, and Canada combined. Cliven Bundy and hundreds of supporters stood up to the armed federal government, and state and local elected officials sought to take back federal lands in their states.

In 2013, the Institute for Energy Research issued a report noting that the total value of oil and natural gas under federal lands and federal waters amounted to $128 trillion. In that era, $128 trillion was more than seven times the GDP of the US, more than 10 times the national debt held by the public, and more than 40 times annual federal revenues. A few observers took note of the report, suggesting policies to make use of that wealth, and yet most figures, in both parties, seemed not to notice the bonanza beneath their feet.

At about the same time, in 2014, as the US was waking up to the crisis of scarcity, as well as the enticing prospect of energy abundance, Americans also began to realize that we faced other shortfalls, too.

In particular, we needed to secure our access to Rare Earth Elements (REE). For most of human history, such exotic REE as Lanthanum, Scandium, and Ytrrium were just mineral curiosities. Yet by the late 20th century, human ingenuity had found vital uses for REE in the new information economy. We found that it simply wasn't possible to run computer chips, lasers, batteries, and other advanced technology without REE.

Pinkerton concludes this fantasy voyage:
Today, America is not only exponentially richer than it was 50 years ago, it is also safer and more secure. Powered by cheap energy, we make things here at home, and we use our brains to keep finding more energy, more REE, and more wealth. We enjoy all the wonders that we once thought we could not afford, from first-rate infrastructure and generous old-age pensions to organ regeneration to minimal taxes—even a budget surplus. We are protected by missile defense, even as adventurous Americans embark on deep-space travel.

Yes, it’s been a great half-century for America, and we owe much of our good fortune to the bravery of Cliven Bundy.
Read more here.

Catching the Kansas City freeway shooter

Have you been following the case of the Kansas City highway shooter? Following cars on the freeways south of Kansas City, then shooting into them. Matt Pearce writes about how technology and one brave woman helped the police catch him. His name? Mohammed Whitaker. Here is a picture of him being taken into custody.

Read more here.

Appreciating the rural way and its polite contempt for the softer world of the city

Victor Davis Hanson gives us his thoughts on the stand off in Nevada.
Mr. Bundy must realize that in about 1990 we decided to focus on the misdemeanor of the law-abiding citizen and to ignore the felony of the lawbreaker. The former gave law enforcement respect; the latter ignored their authority. The first made or at least did not cost enforcers money; arresting the second began a money-losing odyssey of incarceration, trials, lawyers, appeals, and all the rest.

Mr. Bundy knows that the bullies of the BLM would much rather send a SWAT team after him than after 50 illegal aliens being smuggled by a gun-toting cartel across the southwestern desert.

Instead, we all have followed Mr. Bundy for three reasons.

One, he called attention to the frightening fact that the federal government owns 83% of the land in Nevada.

Two, this administration has a long record of not following the law — picking and choosing when and how to enforce immigration statutes, depending on the particular dynamics of the next election; picking and choosing which elements of Obamacare to enforce, again depending on perceived political advantage; and picking and choosing when to go after coal companies, or when not to enforce the Defense of Marriage Act, or when to reverse the order of the Chrysler creditors, or when to allow Lois Lerner to destroy the credibility of the IRS for partisan advantage.

In other words, the Obama administration regularly breaks the law as it sees fit. So we wonder why a federal agency sends out swarms of armed security agents to the empty desert on behalf of a tortoise, when it could just as easily storm Jay Carney’s press conference and demand that the president promise to enforce the Affordable Care Act. Or start apprehending those who are not just violating immigration law, but also serially signing false federal affidavits or providing employers with fraudulent identities.

Finally, Bundy, for all his contradictions, is a throwback to a different age.

My other grandfather was a refined Welsh version of the rural way, but no less independent as a small farmer who worked all his land himself until he quit one day at 86 and died that night in the hospital. He was as wiry as my other Swedish grandfather was a hulk. The one was a master horse rider, the other an expert at plowing with horses. Growing up with them, I never much learned about the secrets of “business” or “how to make it” (sometimes I wish I had). Making it, as I at sixty look back at them now, was probably defined as talking bluntly, gaining a reputation for “straight shooting,” paying all your bills on time, never making excuses for failure, and in general being loyal to friends and of some worry to enemies. To understand Bundy’s fatalism is to appreciate the rural way and its polite contempt for the softer world of the city and the mush that now passes for making it. Losing nobly was preferable to winning badly — Old Ajax to the core.

Under Obama the government is becoming tainted and an ideological tool of social transformation. After just six years, we shrug that, of course, the IRS is biased. The Justice Department is politicized; ask Dinesh D’Souza or the AP reporters. No need to mention the NSA. The EPA makes laws up as ideologically required. No one believes the State Department that in the weeks before the election a video-caused “riot” led to expert jihadists zeroing in with their GPS-guided mortars on a CIA annex in Benghazi. And so on.

The point is Mr. Bundy is no Rahm Emanuel, Al Gore, or Jay Carney. He is no Jay-Z or Sean Penn. He is a world away from the Kardashians and the BMW meets Mercedes crowd of the California coastal corridor or the psychodramas of brats at Dartmouth. Bundy does not have the white privilege that those who have it — mostly liberal, wealthy, and seeking an apartheid existence — damn in others.

Money is not Bundy’s point. Pleasing Harry Reid or the federal bureaucracy is not either. Making a living from the scrub of a desert by providing people good food probably is.

Grant him that. He’s our past, Harry Reid and the bunch in Washington our future. To paraphrase the ancients, sometimes we’d rather be wrong with Cliven Bundy than right with Harry Reid — and the SWAT teams that will revisit Mr. Bundy and his clan very, very soon to enforce a dispute over grazing fees and insensitivity to a tortoise.
Read more here.

Young conservatives on the march

Ralph Benko writes about a new movement that is spreading across America. They call themselves Young Americans for Liberty. Steve Deace, who lives in Iowa, is known as a person who makes sure "Republicrats" don't win Iowa primaries. He has an expanding AM radio listenership, writes a column for the Washington Times, and has written a book entitled "Rules for Patriots: How conservatives Can Win Again." Here are the ten rules:

Never Trust Republicrats;

Never Attack What You’re Not Willing To Kill;

Never Accept the Premise Of Your Opponent’s Argument;

Never Surrender The Moral High Ground;

Reverse the Premise Of Your Opponent’s Argument And Use It Against Him;

Never Abandon Your Base (Unless They Are Morally Wrong);

Define Your Opponents Before They Define Themselves, And Define Yourself Before Your Opponent Defines You;

Always Make Your Opponents Defend Their Record/ Belief System;

Stay On Message;

Play Offense.
Read more here.

Something big got broken here

Former Reagan speech writer Peggy Noonan analyzes what has happened between Russia and the West.
The Soviet Union fell almost a quarter-century ago. It was great news, a victory for civilization. That fall was followed by something: a series of governments trying to maintain stability and pick up the pieces, turning toward democracy, toward modernity, really going for a non-state-dominated economy. Russian leaders were to some significant degree accommodating to the West, which had vanquished them. They engaged in reconstruction on many fronts, reinvention too. They moved in varying degrees toward Western values.

Again, it lasted almost a quarter century.

Now it is over.

That history has ended and something new has begun. Now we are in an era so new we don’t even have a name for it. Maybe we’ll call it “Putinism,” maybe “Cold War II,” who knows—but it’s brand new and it’s different from the past not only in tone but in nature, character and, presumably, intent.

The Russian government isn’t trying to please us or work with us anymore. Mr Putin has formally set himself as our antagonist. Something big got broken here. It will have world-wide implications, and be a major foreign-policy challenge for the United States in the coming years.

I do think Reagan would be startled—that isn’t quite the word, because it doesn’t encompass a sense of horror—that it clearly won’t be the American president leading the West through the start of the new era, but a German chancellor.
Read more here.


Roger Kimball writes,
That’s the thing about credibility. Its loss is infectious, corrosive. Lose it here, and you find that you’ve lost it over there as well.

Why, as the Examiner asks, “has the president’s attorney general and so many other of his most prominent appointees withheld thousands of documents subpoenaed by Congress and requested by journalists under the Freedom of Information Act? Are there passages in those withheld documents that make it clear Obama knew much more than he has admitted?” What do you think? (While were at it, why can’t we see Barack Obama’s Occidental College records? Are there items there that prove he applied to the college as a foreign student, thus committing fraud? What do you think?)

Are sports journalists superior to political journalists. James Taranto thinks so. Kimball quotes his Wall Street Journal column:
Taranto comments that “one thing we have learned from the IRS scandal is that sports journalists are morally superior to political journalists. Whereas the former understand that cheating is an assault on the basic integrity of the sport, the latter all too often treat it as if it were just part of the game.” I agree. But it is perhaps worth noting the limits of the analogy between the disgraced sports figures Lance Armstrong and Mark McGwire, on the one hand, and Barack Obama, on the other. At least the illicit methods employed by the athletes really were performance enhancing, whereas Obama’s lawlessness merely got him elected but did nothing for his performance, which has been dismal.
Read more here.
Thanks to Instapundit for linking to Kimball.

What will be Vladimer Putin's next move?

Michael Totten writes,
Putin could take Eastern Ukraine, but it would do him no good. It’s the poorest part of the country and would turn into an instantaneous money pit for him, akin to the United States annexing Tijuana in Northern Mexico. He can’t possibly want that, not if he has any sense.

He’d lose all his leverage over Kiev. Even an unspoken threat of invasion, occupation, and annexation is enough to make Ukraine act with tremendous caution toward Moscow, but if Putin pulls the trigger, Kiev would have nothing left to lose.

Never mind the price he’d pay internationally for that kind of stunt; invading and occupying the largest country in Europe would require more than a half-million troops and God-only-knows how much money. And for what purpose? Ukraine poses no national security threat whatsoever to Russia.

It’s no big deal that Poland is asking for American ground troops. That’s just predictable, and prudent, geopolitical posturing. If Ukraine asks, though, that would be the time to start getting nervous.
Read more here.
thanks to Instapundit for linking to Totten.

The exact same nutritional content?

Naomi Schaefer Riley writes that researchers have found that
Researchers found that “perceived safety concerns tied to pesticides, hormones, antibiotics and GMOs are the critical component driving sales in the organic-food sector.” Never mind that the USDA ensures the safety of our food, whether it’s conventionally grown or organic.

As Scientific America notes, 50 years of studies in the UK found that organic and conventional foods have the exact same nutritional content.

Organic-food companies continue to profit from the misinformation that conventional food is somehow dangerous.

Excuse me while I eat a bowl of organic yogurt, which the label tells me is lower in sugar than any non-organic I have been able to find.
Read more here.
Thanks to Instapundit for linking to this story.

Government must disclose legal basis for targeting Americans with drones

The Obama administration must disclose the legal basis for targeting Americans with drones, a federal appeals court ruled Monday. David Kravets writes,

The so-called targeted-killing program—in which drones from afar shoot missiles at buildings, cars, and people overseas—began under the George W. Bush administration. The program, which sometimes kills innocent civilians, was broadened under Obama to include the killing of Americans.

Government officials from Obama on down have publicly commented on the program, but they claimed the Office of Legal Counsel's memo outlining the legal rationale about it was a national security secret. The appeals court, however, said on Monday that officials' comments about overseas drone attacks means the government has waived its secrecy argument.

"After senior Government officials have assured the public that targeted killings are 'lawful' and that OLC advice 'establishes the legal boundaries within which we can operate,'" the appeals court said, "waiver of secrecy and privilege as to the legal analysis in the Memorandum has occurred" (
Read more here.

Punishing a bullied kid for recording bullies

By now you have heard about the kid who recorded bullies with his iPad, then was charged with violating wiretapping statutes and disorderly conduct. The case may finally be ending well as the District Attorney is dropping all charges. Read more here.
Thanks to Instapundit for linking to the story.


Thanks to Adrienne.

Of compost piles and sipping lattes

We've gotten past 4/20, now we face Earth Day tomorrow. Adrienne has an important post reminding us of a despicable person who was one of the founders of Earth day and suggesting some questions we could ask the elite snobs who will be sipping their lattes in celebration:
Meanwhile, those of us who are rural dwellers are planting trees, tending our gardens, conserving our energy, and doing proper composting - not making Soylent Green.

We're ranching, raising chickens and pigs, and growing all that green stuff you city dwellers scarf up in huge quantities.

So next time you encounter one of these latte drinking elitist snobs, ask them where the milk, chocolate and other goodies came from so they could sit around at a sidewalk table and deride those who actually do the work.

Ask them why it's okay to avail themselves of a plastic umbrella while telling us to carry our groceries in a cloth bag.

Ask them how much of their food they actually grew and how many trees they actually planted.

Ask them why they don't get off their lazy asses and sweep the curb in front of their house instead of waiting for the city to power up a gas hog of a street sweeper to do it for them.

Ask them why they don't hang their clothes out to dry in the summer.

Ask them why they're using a snow-blower instead of a shovel in the winter and why they don't turn off their air conditioning in the summer.

And finally, ask them if they've always been this stupid and arrogant or if it was a recent development.
Read more here.

Do they really have to drain the whole reservoir?

Did you read about the kid who peed in the reservoir that supplies drinking water to Portland? First of all, he denied that any of his pee reached the reservoir. He said he peed on a wall. Here is a photo from the security tape of him doing his deed.

So, Portland has decided to drain the entire 38 million gallon reservoir! the kid says he sees dead animals in the reservoir all the time. Casey Johnston writes,
A half-liter of urine dumped in a 143 million-liter reservoir would get a urea concentration of about 3 parts per billion, according to Slate. (We calculated it would be a 50 nanoMolar solution.) Meanwhile, the EPA allows concentrations of arsenic in drinking water up to 10 ppb. Salt water has a salt concentration of around 35,000,000 parts per billion, or 600 milliMolar.
Read more here.

Pope beats pot pushers crowd

Wow! What do you know? The Pope had an even bigger and much more well-behaved crowd on Easter than did the marijuana pushers in Denver!

A billion here, a billion there, what difference does it make?

Dina Cappiello writes,
Biofuels made from the leftovers of harvested corn plants are worse than gasoline for global warming in the short term, a study shows, challenging the Obama administration's conclusions that they are a much cleaner oil alternative and will help combat climate change.

A $500,000 study paid for by the federal government and released Sunday in the peer-reviewed journal Nature Climate Change concludes that biofuels made with corn residue release 7 percent more greenhouse gases in the early years compared with conventional gasoline.

The conclusions deal a blow to what are known as cellulosic biofuels, which have received more than a billion dollars in federal support but have struggled to meet volume targets mandated by law. About half of the initial market in cellulosics is expected to be derived from corn residue.

EPA spokeswoman Liz Purchia said in a statement that the study "does not provide useful information relevant to the life cycle greenhouse gas emissions from corn stover ethanol."
Read more here.

"The good things we were promised aren't happening"

Trenton Sperry writes,
the cost of buying pot on the street is considerably lower than buying recreational marijuana legally.

The University of Northern Colorado student newspaper, The Mirror, reported this week that UNC students can buy an ounce of pot from street dealers for $150 to $200 as opposed to paying up to $600 for the same amount after taxes at a legal Garden City dispensary.

Although it’s still early by all accounts, Greeley Police Chief Jerry Garner said police are seeing few indications the black market has any intentions of backing down.

“One of the things that some of the proponents were telling us was when we legalize marijuana, that will dry up the black market, that will dry up the crooks that are out here growing it in the forest or growing it in the middle of a field. It will keep the cartel from bringing marijuana from Mexico to the United States, or at least to Colorado,” Garner said.

“We haven’t seen that happen yet.”

He added, “There are still illegal grows out here. There’s still cartel marijuana coming into Colorado. So some of the good things we were promised aren’t happening yet.”
Read more here.

"The police are watching much more now"

Here is the Denver Post photo of the 4/20 light-up time in the Civic Center in Denver at 4:20 p.m. yesterday.

From the Post story, entitled "A Mellow 4/20,"
By late afternoon, Denver police had issued 47 citations for public marijuana consumption at the downtown rally, as well as 16 other arrests or citations for other reasons. Denver Health Medical Center paramedics had treated 14 people, including three who were taken to detox. The hospital's emergency room had treated about a half-dozen people, most of whom had passed out through a combination of sun and substance use.

Earlier Sunday, Jessica Holland hula-hooped with a friend to the side of the main music stage. Holland said she likely wouldn't smoke up at the rally — partly because of the police presence and partly because she needed to leave the rally early to spend Easter with her family.

"It was actually easier to smoke outside before it was legal," she said. "The police are watching much more now."
Read more here.

The light keeps lifting the dark

After one son and his dad return from the E.R., and as her preeclampsia sister remains in the hospital, Ann Voskamp serves a Resurrection Sunday meal for fifteen, realizing that
We now get to live secure through family messes and wearying trials and bloody places because nothing could secure that tomb.

We can live secure through anything now because nothing could secure that tomb.

And I scrawl it across on a chalkboard on the Monday: The way we roll — is that the stone’s been rolled away.

The sun slants warm across the lawn, across the planked floors and I go ahead and just leave a stone out on the counter, there by the worn out old cutting boards.

The practice of your faith every day is the practice of resurrection in everything.

And the light keeps lifting the dark right there across the cut up old cutting boards, like a cracking back of the black.
Read more here.

Holding on. Being loved.

Here is some wonderful footage of newborn twins being bathed.
Thanks to Scott Ott

A known unknown

Have you seen Donald Rumsfeld's annual letter to the IRS, explaining that he has no idea whether or not his tax return is accurate? He explains that is because the forms are so complicated, and he hopes some day they will be simplified. Go here to read his letter.
Thanks to Scott Ott for the link.

Politicians beholden to teachers unions oppose charter schools where minority students are achieving excellence

Have you been reading about the charter schools in New York and Los Angeles that serve mostly minority students, achieve higher scores on tests, and politicians subservient to teachers unions want to close? The Superintendent in Los Angeles points out that
"the trajectory of achievement in [the elementary] school is unquestionable and unassailable."
Allysia Finley writes,
Yet their performance was never under dispute. Instead, some board members quibbled that Aspire was contracting out state-mandated special education services. The board members wanted Aspire to subscribe to the district's more expensive special-education plan in order to procure more state funds for the district and its unionized workforce.

The same thing is happening in New York, where Mayor de Blasio is making a fool of himself opposing charter schools where black students are achieving.
Read more about Los Angeles here.

Why Clive Bundy's neighbors support him

In an open letter, Bundy’s neighbor, Kena Lytle Gloeckner, explained why ranchers are supporting Bundy. Her letter, which has been posted on numerous blogs, said:

There have been a lot of people criticizing Clive Bundy because he did not pay his grazing fees for 20 years. The public is also probably wondering why so many other cowboys are supporting Mr. Bundy even though they paid their fees and Clive did not. What you people probably do not realize is that on every rancher’s grazing permit it says the following: “You are authorized to make grazing use of the lands, under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management and covered by this grazing permit, upon your acceptance of the terms and conditions of this grazing permit and payment of grazing fees when due.” The “mandatory” terms and conditions go on to list the allotment, the number and kind of livestock to be grazed, when the permit begins and ends, the number of active or suspended AUMs (animal units per month), etc. The terms and conditions also list specific requirements such as where salt or mineral supplements can be located, maximum allowable use of forage levels (40% of annual growth), etc., and include a lot more stringent policies that must be adhered to. Every rancher must sign this “contract” agreeing to abide by the TERMS AND CONDITIONS before he or she can make payment.

In the early 90s, the BLM went on a frenzy and drastically cut almost every rancher’s permit because of this desert tortoise issue, even though all of us ranchers knew that cow and desert tortoise had co-existed for a hundred+ years. As an example, a family friend had his permit cut by 90%. For those of you who are non-ranchers, that would be equated to getting your paycheck cut 90%. In 1976 there were approximately 52 ranching permittees in this area of Nevada. Presently, there are 3. Most of these people lost their livelihoods because of the actions of the BLM. Clive Bundy was one of these people who received extremely unfair and unreasonable TERMS AND CONDITIONS. Keep in mind that Mr. Bundy was required to sign this contract before he was allowed to pay. Had Clive signed on the dotted line, he would have, in essence, signed his very livelihood away. And so Mr. Bundy took a stand, not only for himself, but for all of us. He refused to be destroyed by a tyrannical federal entity and to have his American liberties and freedoms taken away. Also keep in mind that all ranchers financially paid dearly for the forage rights those permits allow – – not rights to the land, but rights to use the forage that grows on that land. Many of these AUMS are water based, meaning that the rancher also has a vested right (state owned, not federal) to the waters that adjoin the lands and allow the livestock to drink. These water rights were also purchased at a great price.

If a rancher cannot show beneficial use of the water (he must have the appropriate number of livestock that drinks and uses that water), then he loses that water right. Usually water rights and forage rights go hand in hand. Contrary to what the BLM is telling you, they NEVER compensate a rancher for the AUMs they take away. Most times, they tell ranchers that their AUMS are “suspended,” but not removed. Unfortunately, my family has thousands of “suspended” AUMs that will probably never be returned. And so, even though these ranchers throughout the course of a hundred years invested thousands(and perhaps millions) of dollars and sacrificed along the way to obtain these rights through purchase from others, at a whim the government can take everything away with the stroke of a pen. This is the very thing that Clive Bundy singlehandedly took a stand against. Thank you, Clive, from a rancher who considers you a hero.
Thanks to Bob Gailey

Hero or scofflaw? Why can't he be both?

Is the federal government at war with the people? Will the federal government strike faster next time? With the establishment of the Bill of Rights, we established a free speech zone in the entire country! The establishment of a free speech zone just goes to show how much those rights have been trampled. Private landowners rarely show up with helicopters and AR-15s, threatening to rustle your cattle!

Loud whining from the ultimate insider

"A sense of immunity. The worst Attorney General in the history of the country. He is an incompetent, divisive tyrant who has utter contempt for the rule of law."

Thanks to Scott Ott for lining to this video.

Holding a belief like a flame that they hold in their hearts

Bill Whittle and Andrew Klaven talk about the resurrection of Jesus here.
Thanks to Scott Ott for linking to this wonderful discussion.

Asking the questions the poverty industry doesn't

Jason L. Riley writes,
Robert L. Woodson Sr. is a no-nonsense black conservative who heads the Center for Neighborhood Enterprise.
About a year ago Paul Ryan asked Woodson to take him on a listening tour. He took Ryan
on 12 trips—all to high-crime, drug-infested neighborhoods. And he was not just touched but blown away by what he saw."

How does Woodson operate?
"We go around the country like a Geiger counter, looking at high-crime neighborhoods and asking the questions the poverty industry doesn't.

"If we see that 70% of households are raising children out of wedlock, that means 30% are not. We want to know what the 30% are doing right. How are they raising kids who aren't dropping out of school or on drugs or in jail? We seek SEK.AU +0.54% them out—we call them the antibodies of the community—and put a microphone on them, and say, 'tell us how you did this.' "
Read more here.
Thanks to Scott Ott.