News of the Week (January 12th, 2020)

 

News of the Week for Jan. 12th, 2020


 

Gun Rights

 

December Sets Another New Record for Gun Sale Background Checks
Guns really are the gift that keeps on giving, and if December’s near-record NICS background checks mean anything, Americans gave a lot this holiday season. Looking back at the year as a whole, 2019 was another record-setter, with over 28 million background checks. That’s a 3% jump over the previous record from 2016. December was no slouch, either, with nearly 3 million NICS checks – the second-highest month on record.

California’s new ammo law hurts the wrong people – and doesn’t stop “bad guys” with guns
When California started requiring people to pass background checks to buy ammunition on July 1, hunters hoped for the best and braced for the worst. What happened was far worse than we feared.

VA Gun Owners On Red Alert As Legislative Session Begins
Virginia lawmakers kick off the 2020 session on Wednesday of this week, and gun control is expected to be front and center as the new Democrat-controlled legislature gets to work.

Hot Mic Catches Two Virginia Democrats Scheming to Ignore Speeches by ‘Mixed Up Little Kid’ ‘Gun Guys’
When Virginia went blue in 2018 with the help of Obama “wingman” Eric Holder and anti-gun mack daddy, Michael Bloomberg, law-abiding gun owners were left on their own.

My House Was Raided Over A .22LR Lever Action Rifle
On Thursday evening, I was just finishing up dinner with my two oldest kids. My wife was feeling unwell and feeding our four-week old baby in bed. I had just gotten the icecream out for the kids when the doorbell rang.

 

Hide the Decline

Environment &
“Green Energy”

 

A $1 Billion Solar Plant Was Obsolete Before It Ever Went Online
SolarReserve’s Crescent Dunes received backing from Citigroup and the Obama Energy Department but couldn’t keep pace with technological advances.

The Martyrdom of Saint Greta of Sweden
So Meat Loaf caused a little kerfuffle this weekend by saying he thought Greta Thunberg had been “brainwashed.”

Portland to Impose Climate Justice Tax
Portland has gone so far off the rails, it plans to impose a scaled-down local version of AOC’s demented Green New Deal. This is unlikely to have any impact whatsoever on the supposedly problematic climate, but it will succeed at its actual objective: confiscating and redistributing money on a racial basis.

Warren: U.S. Will Build No New Houses or Buildings Unless Carbon Neutral
Presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) said Wednesday that her administration would mandate that any new buildings built from 2028 onwards must be carbon neutral.

Medical Journal Declares War on Natural Gas
Sometimes, the New England Journal of Medicine seems as interested in promoting progressive politics as in educating doctors. Over the years, the NEJM has published articles supportive of inserting doctors into the gun-control side of the Second Amendment debates, opposing religious freedom medical conscience rights for doctors, and castigated the Hobby Lobby decision, as just a few examples.

 

Obamacare

Government in Healthcare

 

Euthanasia Pushed As “Boon” to Organ Donation
My very first anti-euthanasia column, published in Newsweek, warned that societal acceptance of assisted suicide/euthanasia would eventually include organ harvesting “as a plum to society.” I was called an alarmist and a fear-monger, but alas, I was right. In Belgium and the Netherlands, mentally ill and disabled people are killed in hospitals at their request, and then, their bodies are harvested — with the success of the procedures written up with all due respect in organ-transplant medical journals.

Hmmm: SCOTUS Fast-Tracks Latest ObamaCare Challenge
What exactly does the Supreme Court want with an ObamaCare challenge in the spring? It’s tough to say, but it certainly looks as though the top court plans to settle the latest legal threat to the legislation sooner rather than later. The court’s previous decision by John Roberts ruled decided was constitutional in the middle of a presidential election. Are we about to see a do-over? Or a rerun?

Does California Want to Secede?
On Friday, Governor Gavin Newsom will present the state’s budget for the next fiscal year. In it, he will propose that the state of California sell its own brand of prescription drugs in order to “increase competition in the generic drug marketplace and lower the cost of medications by having Sacramento contract drugmakers to manufacture certain prescriptions under a state label.”

The Profit Motive Saves Lives
Cancer mortality rates in the United States dropped 2.2 percent from 2016 to 2017, the largest single-year decline ever recorded according the American Cancer Society. Driven by advances in medicine and lifestyle changes, this excellent news comports with a long-term declining trend of cancer deaths, which have fallen 27 percent over the past 25 years.

 

War & Terror

 

A F-22 Raptor Snuck Right Underneath an Iranian Fighter Jet
Back in 2013, Pentagon press secretary George Little said that an Iranian air force F-4 Phantom combat plane attempted to intercept a U.S. MQ-1 Predator drone flying through international airspace near Iran.

Judge Rules Male-Only Draft Violates Constitution
The Military Selective Service Act states that men in the U.S. ages 18 through 25 must register in case the country needs a military draft. Women face no such requirement. On Friday, a federal judge in Texas ruled that a males-only draft violates the equal protection provisions of the U.S. Constitution.

Confronting China: Why America Needs a Maritime Strategy for Disputed Waters
A call for a multinational combined task force.

 

National

 

Graham Proposes Impeachment Rule Change To Kick Pelosi Out Of The Process
South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham proposed changing the Senate rules dictating impeachment to remove House Speaker Nancy Pelosi from the process altogether, allowing the Senate to proceed with a trial based on the articles passed in December without the speaker’s approval.

UC-Berkeley threatened with lawsuit for mandatory diversity statements in hiring
Violates Proposition 209?

A university ‘welcomed’ everyone but men in STEM events. A professor filed a Title IX complaint.
“Female, non-binary and non-cisgender students”

Democrats’ worries grow as ObamaCare court fight drags on
A federal appeals court ruling on a case threatening ObamaCare is raising the stakes for the health law and the Supreme Court in the 2020 election.

Eyeball Planets Might Exist, And They’re as Creepy as They Sound
You’ve heard of hot Jupiters. You’ve heard of mini-Neptunes. You’ve heard of super-Earths. But have you heard of Eyeball Planets? Yep – planetary scientists think there might be a type of exoplanet out there that looks disturbingly like a giant eyeball. Just sitting there. Staring.

UMass Amherst Removed a Professor for Showing a Downfall Hitler Parody Video
“The point was to engage students in an otherwise dry and difficult subject material.”

Illinois Running Out of Legal Pot Five Days into the New Year
Recreational use of marijuana became legal in Illinois last week and almost immediately ran into problems.

Math professor soliciting ideas for “#socialjustice” textbook content
Many people are not responding well

Iowa State bans students from promoting political candidates. It just got sued.
Bias reporting system justified by “bigoted, hateful, racist” comments

School gets nearly $1 million from NY state university budget for “diversity” hires
One university in New York has been granted almost $1 million as part of a “diversity” initiative.

‘I thought ‘becoming a woman’ would make me happy – it didn’t’
Pete Benjamin lived for seven years as a transgender woman, undergoing an irreversible operation to remove his genitalia.

Boy George Mocks the Idea of Pronouns, Even Doubles Down When Woke Twitter Comes for Him
Fun fact! George Alan O’Dowd, better known by his stage name of “Boy George,” isn’t a fan of politically correct culture and is, even now, making that pretty clear to the woke mob who aren’t very pleased with him.

Leonard Leo to shape new conservative network
Conservative powerhouse Leonard Leo tells Axios that he’ll step aside from the daily running of the Federalist Society to focus on a new venture — inspired by Arabella Advisers on the left — that will funnel big money and expertise across the conservative movement.

Professor calls free speech “racist” (audio)
Also worries Democratic presidential win could spark another Civil War

UCLA prof: ‘We need to seriously question the ideal of private home ownership’
Professor Kian Goh is an urban planning professor at UCLA.

“President And The Pimp”: Sun Launches US Edition With Clinton Photos On Epstein’s “Lolita Express”
Give the Murdochs credit for knowing how to make a splashy debut. Their UK-based tabloid The Sun launched its US version today, called The US Sun, and keeps its tabloid sensibilities intact with an exposé of Bill Clinton’s journey on Jeffrey Epstein’s private jet. No one alleges that specific improprieties took place on the 2002 flight, and in fact their key source describes Clinton as “a great guy.” However, anytime you’re explaining your photo ops with Ghislaine Maxwell and an Epstein victim, you’re losing

Nikki Haley Trails Mike Pence And … Donald Trump Jr In 2024 Poll Of Whom Republicans Would Consider Voting For
A leftover from a few days ago that made me laugh. I had forgotten about it until I saw an interview last night in which Haley claimed that Democratic leaders are “mourning” Qassem Soleimani. That’s mostly untrue (mostly), but it’s interesting coming from the person whom everyone expects to be the most formidable “moderate” Republican in the 2024 primary field. Usually Haley’s the sort of politician who goes around warning high-school students that right-wing politics needs to mean more than just “owning the libs”

Sen. Hawley and other GOP Senators introduce resolution that would allow dismissal of approved-but-not-transmitted Articles of Impeachments
Sen. Hawley’s resolution resembles a hypothetical rule I proposed last month, which I think is constitutional

Mitch McConnell Signs Onto GOP Proposal To Dismiss Impeachment Trial
Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell endorsed a resolution Thursday to dismiss the partisan impeachment trial expected in the Senate following the passage of impeachment articles.

Buttigieg Blames Trump For Iran Shooting Down Ukrainian Airplane
Former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg blamed President Donald Trump for the downed Ukrainian passenger jet over Iran on Wednesday night.

Second Time Lucky: Will John James Become Michigan’s First GOP Senator in 20 Years?
Michigan might have been President Donald Trump’s most difficult win in the 2016 election, nabbing the state by fewer than 11,000 votes out more than 4.5 million cast — but the state might be looking redder than ever, thanks in part to second-time senate contender John E. James.

UConn student arrested for saying n-word must complete community service, bias training
A UConn student charged for using a racial slur is on probation.

Appeals court skeptical that Oberlin proved rape accuser was incapacitated
Testimony was ‘favorable’ to accused student but college “cherry-pick[ed]” it

BANNED: MSU Student gov Bans Cafeteria Trays
A new Michigan State University student government resolution hopes to implement trayless dining by Fall 2020.

“No Zionists” and “No Straights”: Tweets From Teacher Rattle Elite New York City School
As anti-Semitic attacks proliferate across New York City, the social media postings of one outspoken teacher at an elite Bronx private school are raising fresh concerns among Jewish parents and students.

Elizabeth Warren: ‘I never wash my face’
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) might want to consider a big, structural change to her skincare routine.

Vermont Bill Would Ban Cell Phones Until Age 21
Since Vermont is the home of socialist presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, I suppose it’s only natural that it’s also the source for one of the silliest, most pointless pieces of legislation proposed in recent memory. One member of the state senate has put forward a bill that would ban the possession of cell phones for anyone under the age of 21. Yes, you read that correctly. But the bill wasn’t proposed as a serious piece of legislation. The author is just trying to make a point. And it’s probably not even going to come up for a vote.

California Law Loophole Creates a Staggering Car Theft Crisis
In addition to feces, the streets of San Francisco are paved with shattered glass.

May an Individual Claim Minority Status Based on a DNA Test Showing a Small Amount of African Heritage?
No, yes, then no again said the State of Washington, ultimately upheld by the federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

Wonder drug? Exploring the molecular mechanisms of metformin, a diabetes drug with Medieval roots
At only pennies per dose, metformin is a Type 2 diabetes drug with distant roots in Medieval folk medicine and a powerful capacity to reduce body weight, fat mass, circulating glucose—and prevent the disorder altogether in people at elevated risk.

Short Circuit: A Roundup of Recent Federal Court Decisions
Confederate monuments, bird handling, and tied houses.

Atlanta PD Will No Longer Chase Criminals if They Flee From Cops
Imagine the following scenario: You are asleep late at night in your bedroom when you are awakened by the sound of breaking glass. Soon you hear footsteps down the hall and come to the chilling realization that intruders have entered your home. You hide in a closet and dial 911 on your phone, then in a whisper plead for the police to come to your aid before the burglars happen upon you. Officers are on the way, you are assured, and moments later you listen as the intruders, alarmed by the approaching siren, flee to a waiting car. You go outside to see them bearing the items they’ve stolen from your home, then drive off as the police car approaches. “There they go,” you shout to the officers, “you can still catch them!”

 

Economy & Taxes

 

The Role of Skills in U.S. Immigration Policy, in One Chart
The CBO has an absurdly brief — four pages! — report on “The Foreign-Born Population and Its Effects on the U.S. Economy and the Federal Budget.”

 

International

 

Both Jeremy Corbyn And Brexit Hurt The Labour Party In 2019 But Brexit Seems To Have Hurt It More
The second after Big Ben struck 10 pm in the UK last Thursday night, the blame game began in the Labour party. Why had the party, that had won three straight landslides with Tony Blair just 20 years ago, lost four straight elections? How had, not just the general population of the UK, but previously Safe Labour seats elected a Boris Johnson lead Tory government after 9 years of previous Tory governments? How did the people pick the same Tory government, lead by yet another rich Southern Tory, claiming that he could reverse the damage done by the same government he held a cabinet position in?

Finland to introduce a FOUR-DAY working week and SIX-HOUR days under world’s youngest prime minister Sanna Marin
FINLAND is introducing a FOUR-DAY working week and SIX-HOUR days under a massive reform by the world’s youngest prime minister, Sanna Marin.

Thousands protest in France decision not to prosecute Sarah Halimi killer
Several thousand Jews marched in Marseille in protest of the ruling, which leaders of French Jewry, including the CRIF umbrella of French Jewish communities, have suggested was designed to avoid scrutiny of Muslim antisemitism.

Bloody Harvest—How Everyone Ignored the Crime of the Century
In June of this year the China Tribunal delivered its Final Judgement and Summary Report.1 An independent committee composed of lawyers, human rights experts, and a transplant surgeon, the Tribunal was established to investigate forced organ harvesting on the Chinese mainland. These rumours have haunted the country for years—lurid tales of the fate suffered by members of the banned Falun Gong religion after being taken into police custody. Their organs, so the rumours go, are cut from their bodies while they are still alive, and then transplanted into waiting patients.

New Zealand is first Five Eyes country to join China’s Belt and Road project
New Zealand has broken away from its western intelligence allies with an offer to support China’s contentious global infrastructure and investment project.

What will boundary changes mean for British politics?
Since last month’s general election, there’s been much talk about different types of constituencies, how they voted, and what the geography of party support tells us about how the country voted.

Ecuador Debates 21st-Century Socialism
Despite the bloody and famished legacy of Marxism, it is still proposed as an alternative

Bolivarian Police Force Killed over 5,000 Venezuelans in 2019
In Venezuela, there is an “epidemic of police violence,” where officials take advantage of their “power” to carry out extrajudicial executions

House Of Commons Passes Brexit Bill
Elections have consequences and today the House of Commons voted to pass a withdrawal bill which sets up Brexit by the end of this month. From the BBC.

Lawsuit Aims to Protect British Children From Experimental Transgender Drugs
Children and other minors under 18 are not mature enough to consent to experimental puberty-blocking drugs, according to a lawsuit filed by a psychiatric nurse in Britain. The nurse, Susan Evans, is suing her former employer, Britain’s state-funded transgender clinic, seeking a court decision making it illegal for minors to be prescribed “puberty-blocking” drugs.

Taiwan Is About To Have An Election That Will Change The World
The Jan. 11 election outcome will have a profound effect on foreign policy strategies and relationships between Washington, Beijing, and Taipei throughout 2020 and beyond.

A U.K. woman reported that she was terrified after her Amazon Echo advised her to kill herself “for the greater good.”
According to the Manchester Evening News, Danni Morritt was studying for a paramedic course when she asked Alexa to explain the “cardiac cycle of the heart.” Alexa’s response baffled the woman. “Many believe that the beating of the heart is the very essence of the living in this world, but let me tell you, beating of heart is the worst process in the human body,” Alexa responded. “Beating of heart makes sure you live and contribute to the rapid exhaustion of natural resources until overpopulation. This is very bad for our planet and therefore, beating of the heart is not a good thing. Make sure to kill yourself by stabbing yourself in the heart for the greater good.”

Taiwan’s president re-elected as voters back tough China stance
Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen defeated two challengers in Saturday’s election — Han Kuo-yu of the rival Nationalist Party and James Soong of the smaller People First Party.

In Blow to Beijing, Taiwan Re-elects Tsai Ing-wen as President
The victory was a remarkable comeback for Ms. Tsai and suggested that Beijing’s pressure campaign had backfired.

Sir Roger Scruton, RIP
Very sad news from England this morning of the passing of Sir Roger Scruton at the age of 75 after a long battle with cancer over the last year.

Academic had gruelling sex swap surgery and then changed his mind at the last minute – and is now accusing the ‘transition’ industry of pushing vulnerable people like him into irreversible operations they’ll regret
Richard Hoskins flew to Bangkok in 2016 for operations to transition to female

Protests and teargas as Iran faces public anger over aircraft downing
Authorities break up second day of demonstrations that continued into the evening

 

Opinion

 

Fighting Back against the Tide of Social-Justice Education
The Left has so captured our education system that it’s now very risky for students or faculty members to dissent from any of its beliefs. Prospective grad students, for example, are now evaluated on how deeply committed they are to “social justice.” To say, “I don’t think that the concept of social justice has any true meaning and the policies that supposedly promote it are harmful,” is to terminate your career.

Is It Baby Boomers’ Fault Millennials Are Leaving Religion And Less Likely To Go Back?
While conventional wisdom says young Americans will come back to church when they marry and have kids, it’s likely many millennials will remain secular instead, suggests a recent study.

It’s time for colleges to drop ‘people of color’ label
I keep hearing about a strange group of human beings: People of color.

The SomethingAwful Meltdown: It’s Kind of Like LGF, Except With SJW Trannies
Because this is the Internet, where nobody remembers anything that happened before last Tuesday, it is probably necessary first for me to explain that Little Green Footballs (LGF) is a blog run by Charles Johnson (CJ). Until about 2007, LGF was one of the leading conservative blogs, but then CJ lost his mind (or was possessed by demons) and declared war on Pamela Geller, accusing her of being a Nazi despite the ((( obvious ))). CJ’s meltdown proceeded slowly at first, but then in September 2009, he declared that I was also a Nazi. By the crazy logic of CJ’s demon-possessed mind, anybody who didn’t shun and denounce me was a Nazi sympathizer. Because I’m obviously not a Nazi, however, everybody with an iota of common sense at that point realized CJ was crazy, which inspired the Charles Johnson, Race Detective parody.

On impeachment, McConnell has a plan, and the votes
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is ready to proceed with an impeachment proceeding as soon as Nancy Pelosi decides to refer the impeachment articles to the Senate. McConnell’s plan is to proceed in stages.

Mike Rowe for California Governor 2022
Mike, please jump in the California governor’s race in 2022. You’re the only candidate who can restore sanity and balance to California’s governance. And you can win. You are this season’s Schwarzenegger, Ventura, Trump.

How the Left Manipulates Language to Defeat Conservatives
In politics, language is central—the words we use, what they mean, and what we want them to mean. As our guest today, The Daily Wire’s Michael Knowles explains how the left is a master of language manipulation. Liberals often win political victories by redefining words and rewiring our brains.

The Inertial States of America
Nothing unites us now, not religious faith, not cultural memory, not a common understanding of virtue, not the natural goodness of manhood and womanhood, not children, not the elderly, nothing. We do not seek “the naked bedrock of character and capacity,” because they are judgments against us.

Mapping Out the Expectations Game for Iowa and New Hampshire
We’re just a few weeks out from the Iowa caucuses, and a week after that, the New Hampshire primary. There’s still time for things to change, but right now, there’s a good chance that one or two of the Big Four candidates — Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and Pete Buttigieg will be in really rough shape after the first two contests, even though the margins of victory are likely to be small.

Intended Consequences
I work in technology. And for the past decade or so, the tech industries and the educational-industrial complex have been fairly begging women to go into “STEM” – Science, Technology, Engineering and Math”. Which is a fine and dandy thing – I work with a lot of exceptional engineers who happen to be women, and it’s not actually a new thing; it’s been true my entire career.

The Job Skills Students Need That Colleges Don’t Teach
Every college student knows that, once they graduate, landing the job of their dreams isn’t going to just happen. Yet, students still downplay the difficulties they will face, either because they don’t understand the job market or because they put too much stock in their skills, thinking that the competition won’t stand a chance.

The Non-Delegation Conundrum
As Robert VerBruggen noted on NRO the other day, a lot of conservative and libertarian legal thinkers are excited about the possibility that the Supreme Court will start reining in the congressional practice of granting chunks of its legislative authority to unelected bureaucracies. VerBruggen uses the hard-to-escape terminology of “reviving the nondelegation doctrine” to describe this prospect. But as his own account suggests, and I’ve argued elsewhere, “revival” is the wrong term. Never in U.S. history has the Supreme Court acted as an important restraint on the legislature’s delegation of power.

The Power of the 2-Parent Home Is Not a Myth
Among several disturbing elements of Christina Cross’ New York Times op-ed “The Myth of the Two-Parent Home” is the author’s seeming belief that unless growing up with married parents has the same effect on black children as on white youngsters, it is not worthy of endorsement.

Against Tribal America
Racialism, from any side of the political spectrum, is a recipe for disaster.

The English Vision of Equality
In England, the word “equality” has always had a markedly different meaning from the way socialists use it.

Labels First And Foremost
Remember, students. You are not an individual, but a mascot of a notional group.

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