News of the Week (May 24th, 2020)

 

News of the Week for May 24th, 2020


 

Corona Virus

 

 

A Tobacco-Based COVID Vaccine?
In the race to come up with a viable vaccine for the novel coronavirus, many groups around the world have been diving into the effort with a great sense of urgency. Various hospitals, universities and even bio-tech companies (some of whom have never produced a vaccine before) have gotten in on the action. But I’ll confess that I didn’t anticipate hearing about tobacco companies entering the competition. And yet, here we are. One of the biggest tobacco companies in the world, British American Tobacco, has somehow developed a vaccine that they say shows great promise and they’re ready to begin limited human testing.

South Korean soccer team apologizes for filling stadium with sex dolls
A South Korean soccer team has reportedly apologized for filling the stands of their fan-less stadium with sex dolls for a weekend game.

Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse criticized for telling students China is to blame for covid-19
U.S. Sen. Ben Sasse’s attempt at humor during a speech at a Nebraska high school’s online commencement — which included jokes about students’ fitness and psychologists and also blamed China for the coronavirus outbreak — drew strong criticism.

“Out-of-Towners” Blamed for “Mayhem” After Florida City Re-Opens Beach
Florida’s COVID-19 response has been a tremendous success story. Much like Georgia, where Gov. Brian Kemp resisted the Cult of Eternal Lockdown, the Republican governor of Florida, Ron DeSantis, delayed issuing a statewide lockdown order and was one of the first governors to lift the order. As I have explained elsewhere, most Florida counties were handling their own coronavirus outbreaks with local policies, so DeSantis didn’t feel a statewide lockdown was necessary, especially because there were so many counties with very few cases, but finally he gave in to the political pressure. And as soon as May 1 arrived, DeSantis was ready to go back to business. Democrats demonized DeSantis, with activist Daniel Uhlfelder touring Florida beaches dressed as the Grim Reaper to promote the message that the Republican governor’s decision would kill people.

Coronavirus flare-ups force France to re-close some schools
Just one week after a third of French schoolchildren went back to school in an easing ofthe coronavirus lockdown, there’s been a worrying flareup of about 70 COVID-19 cases linked to schools.

Florida man who called coronavirus “fake crisis” gets infected, warns others
A Florida man who initially said he believed the coronavirus was a “fake crisis” that was “blown out of proportion” is now hospitalized with the virus, along with his wife, and he has a warning for others.

Forget about Pompeo’s Dog, We Need to Be Watching China
On the menu today: Many countries head into the World Health Assembly wanting the World Health Organization to investigate the origins of SARS-CoV-2; China makes a power grab in Hong Kong; a strange report about the World Military Games held in October of last year in Wuhan; and outbreaks in northern China that are inconvenient for Beijing’s preferred narrative.

China Reportedly Institutes Mass Lockdowns Of More Than 100 Million After Failing To Stop Outbreak
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has reportedly ordered more than a hundred million people to go into lockdown after the government failed to stop the coronavirus outbreak originating in their country which has devastated the global economy.

Gavin Newsom: First responders ‘first ones laid off’ unless California gets federal COVID-19 funds
California Gov. Gavin Newsom says first responders will be the “first ones laid” off unless federal bucks arrive in the Golden State in the near future.

Doctor who delayed retirement to fight pandemic at low-income hospital dies of COVID-19
A doctor who delayed his retirement to fight the coronavirus pandemic at a low-income hospital died of COVID-19, The New York Times reported Monday.

Clark County sees 73 new COVID-19 cases, 8 deaths as testing surges
Clark County recorded 73 new COVID-19 cases and eight additional deaths as the state reported a one-day record of tests for the disease caused by the new coronavirus, according to data posted Tuesday.

Coronavirus pushes China’s poor rat meat farmers to brink of despair
Beijing has now clamped down on trading wild animals due to the coronavirus, potentially destroying the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of farmers.

Gretchen Whitmer Allows Gay Swinger’s Club to Operate While Barber Loses License
There is perhaps nothing more confusing than Democrat governors’ orders during the Chinese WuFlu pandemic. Governor Gretchen Whitmer is by far the worst. That was made clear with the news that a gay swinger’s club with “glory holes” is being allowed to operate under her nose in Lansing while she aims her business-killing death ray on 77-year-old barber, Karl Manke, for giving haircuts.

Early March Did Not Predict the Future
Certain adamant coronavirus declarations look foolish now.

Trump Hate Is Making It Harder to Study Hydroxychloroquine
Yesterday, I pointed out the potential consequences of having an overwrought, childish, partisan debate over a lifesaving drug that’s used by millions of Americans. Today, I see, Joe Biden is comparing hydroxychloroquine to poison. “It’s like saying maybe if you inject Clorox into your blood it may cure you,” Biden said of Donald Trump’s admission that he takes the drug. “C’mon, man! What is he doing? What in God’s name is he doing?”

Data Leak: China Had at Least 640,000 Coronavirus Cases In 230 Cities
This may be the most spectacularly under-discussed story of the pandemic

“Masks: Use Them or Lose Them?”
Today on The Editors, Rich, Charlie, and Michael discuss Trump’s statement that he’s taking hydroxychloroquine, and who is right when it comes to wearing a mask. Listen below, or subscribe to this podcast on iTunes, Google Podcasts, Stitcher, TuneIn, or Spotify.

Bloomberg: Don’t Look Now, But China Just Locked Down Over 100 Million In New COVID-19 Outbreak
So much for China’s grand reopening. A cluster of new COVID-19 cases in the city of Shulan — more than 2,000 kilometers from Wuhan — has prompted Beijing to order a lockdown of the province of Jilin, Bloomberg reported last night. The lockdown began a few days ago but news of it has slowly emerged over the past day. The move impacts than 100 million people in China, who now face new restrictions on movement and access to economic activity

Hong Kong Study: Surgical Masks Could Reduce Coronavirus Transmission By As Much As 75%
Andrew Cuomo’s taking a belated but well-deserved beating over his health department’s insane initial policy of returning infected nursing-home residents to their facilities, where they spread the disease, instead of quarantining them elsewhere. That’s one of the first major recriminations for terrible decision-making by federal and state leaders early on that could have prevented many deaths in hindsight, but it won’t be the last.

Trump: Our High Case Count Is A Badge Of Honor In That It Reflects A Large Amount Of Testing
He’s only half-right here, and “badge of honor” is an unfortunate way to describe anything related to the feds’ COVID-19 response, but this answer represents notable progress from him complaining last week that maybe testing is overrated. At least he’s recognizing now that more testing is a good thing even if it pushes the official case count up. Watch, then read on.

The First Casinos Are Reopening And It’s A Very Different Experience For Tourists
In Idaho, the Coeur d’Alene Casino Resort Hotel, operated by the Native American Coeur d’Alene Tribe, became one of the many casinos in the United States to reopen this month. Being one of the primary sources of both jobs and revenue for the tribe, this was seen as a welcome development. But since we now live in the world of the novel coronavirus, the casino experience is quite different from what visitors saw in the old days. Many of the staples that gamblers took for granted are missing, possibly forever, and other features have been modified to remain in compliance with social distancing rules. Will the crowds return in their previous numbers if this is the new normal?

South Korea: Retested COVID-19 Positives Are Actually *Great* News
This initially looked like a *gulp* moment, but might actually turn out to be the best news about the virus we’ve yet had. Over a month ago, researchers in South Korea sent out a warning that some previously infected and recovered COVID-19 patients had tested positive again. That prompted fears about the virus “reactivating,” which would have doomed vaccine and treatment efforts. Later studies suggested that the tests had malfunctioned by picking up dead viral matter, but the worries about immunity continued.

What We’re Getting Right and Wrong with Reopening
We didn’t want to adapt, but we adapted.

“Hot” nurse disciplined for wearing bra and panties under see-through PPE gown
This naughty nurse is going viral. A nurse in Russia was suspended from the hospital where she worked in Tula, 100 miles south of Moscow, after she arrived at her shift in the all-male coronavirus patient wing with no clothing save for her skivvies under her transparent personal protective equipment.

The coronavirus in Europe, a comparative analysis
The Wuhan coronavirus is waning in Europe. A month ago, new reported cases in Italy were running at about 3,500 per day, down from a peak of around 6,000. Now, they are averaging around 800.

It’s OK to Acknowledge Good Covid-19 News
We are on the other side of the curve. There are encouraging signs all over the country, and no early indications of a reopening debacle.

At least 4 states combined numbers from two tests, possibly providing a misleading picture of coronavirus spread
At least four states combined data from two different test results, potentially providing a misleading picture of when and where coronavirus spread as the nation eases restrictions.

What We Can Learn from Coronavirus Per Capita Death Rates
The main takeaway from the massive disparities in death rates so far is their regional patterns.

What Does China Really Want? To Dominate the World
Stop debating Beijing’s intentions and take Xi Jinping both seriously and literally.

Consider the Children
Jason Pargin is the former editor of Cracked.com. He usually writes comedy, but also often offers really keen insights on human nature, which is arguably one of the purposes of comedy. Pargin asked for the right term for the fallacy that a policy, plan, or idea will work as long as human beings act like perfectly programmed robots, instead of the myriad, unpredictable, flawed, flesh-and-blood creatures that we are. (A strong contender for the right term, but perhaps not quite on the nose, is “the engineer’s fallacy,” the idea that the logical solution is the best solution, regardless of how that solution actually works in the real world.)

Peruvian mayor poses as corpse to avoid arrest for flouting lockdown
Now his political career may be dead! The mayor of a town in Peru posed as a dead coronavirus victim — by lying in a coffin while wearing a face mask — to avoid being arrested for violating lockdown rules that he should have been helping enforce, according to reports Thursday.

A new Swedish coronavirus antibody study suggests the herd-immunity strategy isn’t working
A new study by Sweden’s public-health agency found that just 7% of people in Stockholm had developed coronavirus antibodies by the end of April.

Oxford Vaccine Moves To Phase II Of Human Trials
A coronavirus vaccine produced by researchers at Oxford University started Phase 1 trials involving around 1,000 people last month. Today, those trials advanced to the next stage of human trials involving many more volunteers.

West Virginia’s COVID-19 “Hot Spot”
After our trip to the Longbranch Saloon in Hedgesville, W.Va., I discovered that we had actually been in more danger than I knew

Did Japan Just Beat the Virus Without Lockdowns or Mass Testing?
Japan could end its state of emergency as early as Monday

Emotional North Dakota governor begs anti-maskers: Please drop the culture-war resistance and wear one
Via WaPo, the supposed war over masks is overstated. Read this if you missed it a few days ago for the latest numbers, and remember that even you-know-who donned one (temporarily) during his visit to the Ford plant in Michigan this week. Two-thirds of Republicans say they’re wearing masks “most of the time” when they’re around other people.

How States Turned Nursing Homes Into “Slaughter Houses” By Forcing Them to Admit Discharged COVID-19 Patients
Why did states order nursing homes to take in COVID-19 infected residents? F.A. Hayek’s “fatal conceit” might hold the answer.

New Disturbing Details Emerge In Case Of Elderly Man Who Was Beaten At Michigan Nursing Home
The father of the 20-year-old man who allegedly beat an elderly man in a Michigan nursing home last week, which went viral this week after video of the alleged incident was viewed millions of times on social media, says that his son was not supposed to be at the nursing home, but was taken there because he tested positive for the coronavirus. Police are now also reportedly investigating whether the suspect beat an elderly woman.

Kids and Teachers Are all Going to Need Therapy if Schools Follow the CDC’s Recommendations for Classrooms
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued new safety guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the event schools reopen in the fall. The recommendations—they’re just that… for now—have teachers and parents alike wondering how such restrictions could be implemented and asking who came up with such unworkable plans. Here’s a brief summary of the suggested rules:

 

Election 2020

 

Democratic lawsuit seeks to eliminate signature verification on mail ballots
Making the June primary an all vote-by-mail affair was a prudent response to the coronavirus outbreak. Taking active steps to undermine the integrity of the election isn’t.

McConnell-aligned PAC to spend $10M in Montana as danger to Senate majority grows
The super PAC aligned with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is investing a sizable $10.1 million in Montana as Republicans move to rebuff the expanding Democratic threat to GOP control of the Senate.

A Republican Path to the Ballot Box in 2020
How many people are on China’s payroll in the US media and political operations? We know for certain that during the height of the Soviet Union, the Soviets were subsidizing various enterprises in the United States to fire up opposition to the Reagan Administration and American policy in general. It is obvious the Chinese would do the same, though it is also increasingly obvious that they can get a good return on their investment with less money because so many major voices out there hate the President so much they’ll align with Chinese communists for free.

Ben Sasse Picks the Correct Fight With His Democrat Challenger
Senator Ben Sasse gave a high school commencement speech Saturday at his alma mater Freemont High School. Sasse delivered the speech remotely, and honestly it seemed more like a stand-up comedy routine. Wildly entertaining, it ranged from Joe Exotic to murder hornets and black holes. If you want to laugh, feel free to watch it in its entirety. It is about eight minutes long and if you don’t smile once, you just might be a communist

Is Arizona Slipping Away?
Yesterday Axios published a memo from Doug Sosnik, the political director of the winning Clinton ’96 campaign, laying out Biden’s likeliest path to the presidency. Gotta be Pennsylvania + Michigan + Wisconsin, right? Dems will try to rebuild the blue wall in the Rust Belt and having a nominee from Scranton is going to help them do it.

Philadelphia Democratic Party Official Pleads Guilty to Stuffing Ballot Boxes in Elections
“Demuro further admitted that a local political consultant gave him directions and paid him money to add votes for candidates supported by the consultant…”

Tim Scott Responds to Biden’s “You Ain’t Black” Comment
“If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump, then you ain’t black,” Joe Biden said this morning.

South Carolina election ballots reportedly found in Maryland this week
South Carolina election ballots reportedly ended up in Maryland this week, after mail-in voting for the Palmetto State’s June 9 primary has already begun, according to local news reports.

Trump Advisors Warn McConnell: Martha McSally’s In Trouble In Arizona
It’s weird that they thought Mitch McConnell, of all people, needed to be notified of this when it’s been obvious for months in public polling that McSally’s at dire risk of losing. Here’s every poll of her race against Mark Kelly so far this year. The top line is the polling average, followed by the most recent polls.

This Doesn’t Bode Well for Vote-by-Mail: Many Oregon Voters Received the Wrong Primary Ballot
Oregon famously voted in the 1990s to go to a vote-by-mail-only system for all of its elections. In Oregon’s federal and state primary elections this past Tuesday, a number of voters received the wrong ballot. Many center-right observers say that the number of errors has spiked in 2020, and have sought answers to the problem.

“You’re Damn Fortunate I Did”: Sessions Blasts Trump Over Recusal Criticism In Late-Night Twitter Fight
So the pretense has finally evaporated, right? We’ll see. Jeff Sessions has continued to sell himself as a MAGA-backing candidate in his bid to win back his Senate seat in Alabama, while Donald Trump has continued to trash his former Attorney General on Twitter. Until now, Sessions has largely ignored it, but apparently he had enough last night. Trump marked the three-year anniversary of Sessions’ recusal from the Operation Crossfire Hurricane probe by telling Alabama voters “do not trust Jeff Sessions.”

Questions of voter fraud after man finds 83 ballots shipped to a single address in his apartment complex
Jerry Mosna found 83 mail-in ballots shipped to his apartment complex in San Pedro, California this weekend

Can Republicans Win the House in November?
House Republican leaders are expressing optimism about their chances to flip the House from Democrats to the GOP in November. Despite the challenges facing the party — challenges that almost all political pros from both parties agree are daunting — there may, indeed, be room for looking on the sunny side of the contest.

Charlamagne tha God Dismisses Biden’s Apology: The ‘Lip Service … Is Cool’
Charlamagne tha God — the black radio host to whom presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden notoriously said, “If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re voting for me or Trump, then you ain’t black” — warned that Democrats will face a “voter depression” problem in November, thanks to their likely presidential nominee. He said the best apology is pro-black policies and it’s time for black voters to put the burden on Democrats to win their votes, not take them for granted.

Jo Jorgensen Wins Libertarian Presidential Primary
Libertarians selected Clemson University professor Dr. Jo Jorgesen as their nominee for president following an all-day online convention on Saturday. Jorgensen, who was the party’s vice presidential nominee in 1996, captured the nomination following four rounds of voting. She never trailed and only saw her lead grow over the evening as other members of the so-called pragmatic caucus of the Libertarian Party consolidated their support.

Charlamagne tha God Dismisses Biden’s Apology: The ‘Lip Service … Is Cool’
Charlamagne tha God — the black radio host to whom presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden notoriously said, “If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re voting for me or Trump, then you ain’t black” — warned that Democrats will face a “voter depression” problem in November, thanks to their likely presidential nominee. He said the best apology is pro-black policies and it’s time for black voters to put the burden on Democrats to win their votes, not take them for granted.

Can Republicans Win the House in November?
House Republican leaders are expressing optimism about their chances to flip the House from Democrats to the GOP in November. Despite the challenges facing the party — challenges that almost all political pros from both parties agree are daunting — there may, indeed, be room for looking on the sunny side of the contest.

 

Gun Rights

 

Alaskan Armed Citizen Thwarts Potential Mass Shooting
On the morning of May 16, 19-year-old Brian Nicolai allegedly broke into the public safety building in the remote Alaskan village of Kwethluk near the state’s southwest coast. According to authorities, Nicolai donned body armor and a helmet, staged several rifles, and pulled the fire alarm. When local village police officers responded to the alarm, Nicolai opened fire.

Oklahoma Governor Signs Bill Banning Red Flag Laws
Governor Stitt’s office reported late Monday afternoon that the governor has now officially signed SB1081 into law.

 

Hide the Decline

Environment &
“Green Energy”

 

Climate Activists Fear Post Covid-19 Commuters Will Avoid Public Transport
In the wake of the Covid-19 crisis, for many commuters sharing a tightly packed metro with their suspiciously unhealthy looking fellow commuters may have lost its charm.

The Looming Failure of Wind Energy
This is not about “Climate Change.” It addresses the issue of whether wind as implemented is an effective replacement for fossil driven power stations. This is about Australia where we are according to the mainstream media in a transition to renewable energy even though after many years, we are far from it. We are closing coal-fired power stations, but the expansion of renewable energy is slow. We are approaching a crisis point. The reality of the Australian situation can be applied worldwide, and this report draws on data and nothing else.

 

Obamacare

Government in Healthcare

 

CV-19 Alphabet Soup: Another Update
It’s kind of amazing the ripple effect CV-19 is having on different areas of the insurance business. From Business Interruption on the P&C side, to premium relief on the health side. And of course all the changes already happening on the financial side.

 

War & Terror

 

Hong Kong lawmakers clash as pro-Beijing camp elects chair
Clashes broke out in Hong Kong’s legislature Monday for a second time this month as a pro-Beijing lawmaker was elected as chair of a key committee that scrutinizes bills, ending a prolonged struggle for control with the pro-democracy camp.

The Air Force’s Secretive X-37B Spaceplane Has Successfully Launched
The mysterious X-37B spaceplane launched on its sixth mission on May 17 at 9:14 a.m. EDT.

China readies biggest counterattack against US
China is ready to take a series of countermeasures against a US plan to block shipments of semiconductors to Chinese telecom firm Huawei, including putting US companies on an “unreliable entity list,” launching investigations and imposing restrictions on US companies such as Apple, and halting purchase of Boeing airplanes, a source close to the Chinese government told the Global Times.

Hmmm: Mississippi Church That Challenged Shutdown Mysteriously … Explodes
A Mississippi church at the center of a legal battle over the shutdown exploded and burned to the ground yesterday — and it doesn’t look like a coincidence. The pastor of First Pentecostal in Holly Springs has led protests to allow his congregation to gather once again in defiance of local COVID-19 shutdown orders, including one inside a Walmart to accuse officials of double standards. A local judge had rebuked the church for acting in “an excessively reckless and cavalier manner,” a ruling the church had planned to fight.

FBI: Shooting at Corpus Christi Naval Base is “Terrorism-Related”
“We have determined that the incident this morning at the Naval Air Station Corpus Christi is terrorism related”

Military, diplomatic talks on with China to end stand-off
India is trying to resolve the ongoing troop confrontation with China in some stretches along the unresolved border in eastern Ladakh as well as Sikkim, which has become the most serious since the major Doklam face-off in 2017, through both military and diplomatic channels.

Chinese Troops Cross Into India, Fortify Positions
Indian media report Chinese military build-up along the Himalayan border

China’s Path To Self Destruction Starts in Hong Kong
“The real threat from China remains not its rise, but rather its collapse. Freedom is contagious. Xi’s actions against Hong Kong may, in hindsight, appear like treating a chest wound with a band-aid.”

Chinese Foreign Minister: U.S. Pushing Towards A “New Cold War”

During a news conference Sunday, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said the United States should abandon its “wishful thinking about changing China” and stop pushing the two countries “to the brink of a new Cold War.” He sent this message to Washington during the National People’s Congress, described by the Washington Post as “an annual piece of political theatre.”

 

National

 

China expert says communist regime unlike anything ‘since the Third Reich’
China expert Gordon Chang joined Campus Reform to discuss the communist regime’s attempt to infiltrate U.S. colleges.

Oh deer! Twitch proves itself a joke after giving TRANS-SPECIES female a spot on its “Safety Advisory Council”
2020 isn’t done with us yet. In an act of progressive seppuku, one of the world’s largest streaming platforms gave a position of power to a girl who thinks she’s a woodland creature, and the internet is having none of it.

LGBTQ Activist Groups Pressure Government to Coerce Acceptance from People of Faith
The lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer — hope I didn’t miss any — community believes that the government’s religious exemptions are gutting civil rights protections for minorities.

Universities try to block Congress from accessing documents detailing their ties to China
Memo exclusively obtained by The College Fix shows schools applying pressure to keep files secret

Proxy Voting Lets “20 People Control” Congress, Warns Kevin McCarthy
Democrats passed proxy voting in their fourth coronavirus recovery bill on Friday. “Instead of 435 [people] representing districts across the nation … 20 people control all of Congress,” says House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, referring to the effect of Democrats’ proxy voting push.

Norma “Jane Roe” McCorvey’s Deathbed Confession: Evangelicals Paid Me To Say I Was Pro-Life
Assuming she’s telling the truth, and more on that in a second, this might be the most benevolent bit of astroturfing in American political history.

GQ Piece On The Pro-Life Movement Labels George Wallace A Republican
Norma McCorvey aka Jane Roe, made a deathbed confession that, contrary to what she had claimed for 20 years, she was never really a pro-life Christian. She claimed she had gone along with what she was told to say because she was receiving money from pro-lifers, about half a million dollars over 20 years. As Allahpundit noted here, there’s still some cause for doubt about whether her conversion was always an act, but it’s clear that in the end she was pro-choice.

16-year-old boy shares his story about being forced to be trans by mother
A 16-year-old Aussie-American boy recalls his traumatic childhood experience of being raised as a girl and forced to wear dresses and make up by his mother.

UC regents unanimously approve plan to drop SAT and ACT from admissions
The University of California Board of Regents, in a landmark move that could reshape the college admissions process across the country, voted Thursday to drop the SAT and ACT testing requirement.

The Presidential Race Florida Is Really Talking About
In the South’s biggest battleground, it’s already 2024, and the backstabbing and money-grabbing have already begun.

Inspector general fired
Did you hear the news? The White House fired an inspector general. I didn’t think so. Gerald Walpin, inspector general of the government service program AmeriCorps, was canned while he was investigating whether a major Democratic donor tried to use AmeriCorps funds as hush money to keep female students at a charter school in Sacramento from complaining about sexual advances from the donor.

Short Circuit: A Roundup of Recent Federal Court Decisions
Unpaid college athletes, cannabidiol gummies, and jailhouse informants.

Sex doll shops “can’t keep up with demand” during coronavirus lockdown
Demand for the human-like silicone gals have shot up so much amid the coronavirus quarantine, suppliers are struggling to keep up production, according to a report.

 

Economy & Taxes

 

Trump announces executive order aiming to make hundreds of deregulations amid coronavirus permanent
President Trump announced an executive order Tuesday that aims to make hundreds of deregulations in the age of coronavirus permanent, something that would amount to a massive overhaul of regulatory policy.

How to Unfreeze the Post-Pandemic Economy
Entrepreneurial adaptation must be unleashed

Made in the USA campaign to “Make China Pay”
Move over, MAGA hat. There’s a new, bright, U.S.-made red cap in town. And this one has broader crossover appeal.

Texas Is Restarting Evictions. Is It Too Soon?
The title pretty much outlines the story. Now that Texas is moving through the reopening process and people are going back to work, tenants are going to be expected to pay (and in many cases catch up on) their rent. The question went before the state’s highest court already and allowing landlords to begin evicting delinquent tenants has been approved. But questions remain as to whether this shouldn’t have been phased in a bit later in the process. After all, not everyone is going to be able to come up with multiple months worth of rent the moment they’re back on the job.

Un-furloughing the Economy
If policymakers take the right steps, the U.S. can reopen successfully—and get lots of those lost jobs back.

Testing the Waters
Earlier this week, the Treasury Department sold 20-year Treasury Bonds for the first time since 1986! Why does this matter? My guess? They were testing the appetite for longer-duration bonds (they sold $20 billion worth at 1.22 percent). $20 billion is chump change in the grand scheme of federal-government debt issuance. But the point is that there is significant appetite at very low yields for long-duration government debt, and it makes no sense for our Treasury to not test the waters of 50-year or 100-year maturities, taking off the table one of the biggest tail risks people have suggested over the years: rising rates (in the future) substantially increasing debt-service costs.

Chinese Companies Could Be Delisted From U.S. Stock Exchanges: What It Means for Investors
The ripples are already being felt in the markets after landmark legislation was approved by the Senate.

 

International

 

Germany Takes Back its Sovereignty from the European Union
The seemingly obscure ruling… has called into question the legitimacy of the EU’s supranational legal and political order…. The German court’s ruling marks a new phase in the debate over the balance between national and supranational sovereignty.

UK: 11 Year Olds Asked to Define Types of “Hardcore” Porn for Homework
Parents outraged by outlandish homework questions set to pre-teens

Hungary outlaws changing birth gender on documents
Hungary’s parliament has approved a law that bans transsexuals from changing the gender they were assigned at birth on official documents.

“Nature Rights” Advances to World Economic Forum
As the world is distracted by COVID or snoozing in an unwise “it can never happen here” complacency, the “nature rights” movement continues to advance in respectably. It has been endorsed by science journals. Four rivers have been granted rights. The Florida Democratic Party has put it in its plank. And now apparently, it is in the process of being embraced by the Davos set.

Maduro’s Frontman Coordinates Gold Payments from Venezuela to Iran
Alex Saab and Tareck El Aissami have reportedly reached an agreement to rescue Venezuela’s refineries, an effort that is unlikely to succeed.

Survey: Young Germans Prefer China Over The U.S.
Der Spiegel magazine: “Young Germans are turning into China fans.” Nearly half of them want closer ties with China over the U.S.

Hong Kong Lawmaker: China’s National Security Law “A Knockout Blow To The Democracy Movement”
The Chinese Communist Party has picked this moment to effectively end it’s commitment to “one country, two systems” the agreement it made with Britain during the 1997 handover of Hong Kong. Since China’s previous attempts to crackdown on civil liberties in Hong Kong have been blocked by large street protests, Xi Jinping has decided to take a new approach. Rather than trying to pass anything through Hong Kong’s legislature, he is simply having his National People’s Congress pass the new security law in Beijing. That leaves no opportunity for protesters to influence what is happening. Today, local authorities quickly shut down a small march of elected officials citing the need to maintain social distancing because of the coronavirus

Pompeo Blasts China: “Respect Hong Kong’s High Degree of Autonomy, Democratic Institutions, and Civil Liberties”
“The decision to bypass Hong Kong’s well-established legislative processes and ignore the will of the people of Hong Kong would be a death knell…”

Iranian Tankers Full Of Gasoline Approach Venezuela
As I mentioned earlier this week, Venezuela is in the midst of a gasoline crisis reminiscent of the United States gas crunch in the 1970s. Venezuela’s gas is heavily subsidized and is usually cheaper than anywhere else in the world but the collapse of the Venezuelan economy has led to shortages. People are now waiting in line for hours and even days in hopes of getting gas at the subsidized price. But Venezuela has apparently worked out a deal with Iran and five tankers loaded with gas have been on their way to Venezuela this week. The first of those tankers is now entering the Caribbean.

The King of Germany Will Accept Your Bank Deposits Now
Peter Fitzek is part of a movement that denies Germany’s existence. He founded his own kingdom and bank—then the government started asking where the money went.

 

Opinion

 

Intro to Critical Theory
Critical theory is a broad area of knowledge that originated with the Frankfurt School in the 1930s and has expanded and evolved dramatically since then. It has spawned entire disciplines such as Critical Race Theory, Critical Pedagogy, and Queer Theory and is highly influential within the social justice movement. Contemporary critical theoryCTImage views reality through the lens of power, dividing people into oppressed groups and oppressor groups along various axes like race, class, gender, sexuality orientation, physical ability and age. While I disagree with contemporary critical theory on a number of grounds, I’m particularly concerned as an evangelical Christian with the way in which it is influencing segments of the evangelical church. This site contains numerous resources that will help people, both Christians and non-Christians, understand the claims of critical theory, evaluate them carefully, and critique them rationally.

The ACLU’s Absurd Title IX Lawsuit
That the ACLU is suing the federal government in the hope of altering its due-process standards is not headline news. That the ACLU is suing the federal government in the hope of weakening its due-process standards is headline news for the ages. Once more, the line between parody and reality has been blurred.

“Biological Leninism”
Why has Stacey Abrams become a darling of the Democratic Party? Why is an otherwise obscure former state legislator a “rising star,” when her only accomplishment was (a) losing a gubernatorial election by more than 50,000 votes and (b) blaming her defeat on racist “suppression”?

How Courts Should Test the Claims of Affirmative Action
The Supreme Court has ruled that courts must employ “strict scrutiny” in cases involving racial preferences. The problem is that when courts have those cases before them, they’ve been inclined to accept the claims universities make for them at face value. They beg the question.

Lettergate, &c.
On presidential lying, QAnon, Susan Collins, Venezuela, Phyllis George, Jerry Stiller, and more

China Should Not Provoke the United States
America is a much richer country than China, with a more motivated ethos, comparatively well-functioning institutions, and the advantages of a free society, an enterprise economy, and serious allies.

The Shutdown’s Silver Lining
The government has closed most schools. So, more parents are teaching kids at home. That upsets the government school monopoly. Education “experts” say parents lack the expertise to teach their kids.

Why scientists are changing their minds and disagreeing during the coronavirus pandemic
The changing recommendations during the Covid-19 pandemic on things such as whether to wear face masks has confused the public and caused them to lose faith in science.

“Hate Speech” and the New Tyranny over the MindMay 19, 2020 About an hour read Download Report
In America, a powerful movement intent on outlawing “hate speech” continues to expand in institutional power and moral vigor with each passing year. Most Americans do not fully grasp what banning “hate speech” entails, or the political and intellectual stakes involved. Should “hate speech” be banned, America will no longer be a self-governing nation: Serious deliberation on the central political questions confronting the country would become impermissible. But the debate over “hate speech” ultimately exposes our nation’s deepest and perhaps irreconcilable moral divide: Are we a republic in which presumptively rational citizens rule themselves politically and where the freedom of the mind is protected—or are we a confederation of oppressed groups whose fragile identities must be honored and sheltered from criticism?

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3 Responses to News of the Week (May 24th, 2020)

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