News of the Week (February 27th, 2022)


News of the Week for Feb. 27th, 2022


War & Terror


Putin to Biden: No summit unless outcome is already guaranteed
Breaks Minsk agreement, recognizes separatist independence

Putin Shows His Cards
In a truly jaw-dropping, hour-long speech from the Kremlin, Vladimir Putin called into question the foundation of the post–Cold War settlement in Europe.

Putin announces plans to recognize regions of Ukraine as separate countries
Earlier today the Kremlin announced that President Putin would soon sign a decree recognizing two areas of Ukraine controlled by Russian separatists as independent entities. Putin then gave a lengthy speech in which he described the history of Ukraine as intertwined with Russia and called it “madness” that Ukraine was allowed to leave the USSR.

Ukraine-Russia Crisis: Cyberattacks could affect U.S.
Russia’s widespread cyberattacks are part of a technique to destabilize Ukraine before a possible invasion, according to U.S. government officials, who are bracing for possible cyberattacks in the United States.

Russia Recognizes Two Separatist Regions in Ukraine: Donetsk and Luhansk
Russia put more troops in the regions while Germany announced it won’t certify the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.

Germany freezes Nord Stream 2 gas project as Ukraine crisis deepens
Germany on Tuesday halted the Nord Stream 2 Baltic Sea gas pipeline project, designed to double the flow of Russian gas direct to Germany, after Russia formally recognised two breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine.

France Drops Australia From List of Key Indo-Pacific Partners
France removed Australia from its list of key partners in the Indo-Pacific region as tensions between the two countries linger five months after the AUKUS submarine debacle.

South Koreans overwhelmingly want nuclear weapons to confront China and North Korea, poll finds
There has long been a desire among South Koreans for domestic nuclear weapons capability, but a poll shows that in the face of North Korea’s nuclear ambitions and an assertive China, that view has ballooned to more than 70 percent of the population — most of whom want to go nuclear even when the potential drawbacks are explained.

The Vindication of Mitt Romney
That’s not a headline I’d normally expect to write, since Mr. Romney’s irritating preciousness has gone to eleven in recent years, but he deserves props for his statement in the 2012 campaign that “Russia is our most significant enemy.” I think it’s actually China, but the point is, recall how Romney was ridiculed, especially by President Obama, who said, “The 1980s called—they want their foreign policy back.” The media was more than happy to play along as Obama’s sneering echo chamber.

Ukraine as 21st-Century Sudetenland
Excuse me if the headline is a bit too Godwin’s Law, but the analogy — an invasion launched on the pretext of supporting regional separatists — seems justified, and I don’t mean to do a cheap “Putin is the New Hitler” thing, because obviously the “New Hitler” will be whoever Republicans nominate for president in 2024. Anyway . . .

Scores Of ‘Dark Vessels’ Belonging To China’s Maritime Militias Are Operating In Contested Waters
A new Chinese law allows for vessels to turn off their transponders in some of the world’s most densely trafficked and tense waterways.

New Axis of Evil is finally officially recognized
This is something that I’ve been talking about for quite a while here, though others have been steadily raising similar alarms. Over the past couple of decades (at least) there has been an increasingly obvious and public realignment in international relations, with lines being drawn and sides being chosen in an alarming fashion. The end of the cold war left many politicians – particularly in the United States and western Europe – hopeful that the days of dangerous tensions and school children training to hide under their desks when the flash of a nuclear bomb flooded their classroom were behind us. The world, it seemed, was waking up to the concept of international cooperation.

McConnell: U.S. and Allies Must Arm Ukraine
Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell issued a lengthy statement on Tuesday in response to Russia’s escalation of its war against Ukraine

The Reality of the Situation
Pronoun lectures and drag queens in military corridors are no match for tanks.

Russia Unleashes Its War
As I write this, Vladimir Putin has just finished a speech on Russian TV declaring a “special military action aimed at the demilitarization and de-nazification of Ukraine.”

Russia invades Ukraine
The news this morning tells us that Vladimir Putin has launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine and demanded Ukraine’s army give it up. Speaking on state television early this morning, Putin claimed that Russia was not planning to occupy Ukraine but vowed to punish those who stood in their way.


‘No one expected sanctions to prevent anything’: Biden’s baffling response after freezing all Kremlin assets in America, targeting four more banks: Says Putin wants to ‘re-establish Soviet Union’
President Joe Biden condemned Vladimir Putin for his invasion of the Ukraine

Is Putin’s Next Target the Baltic States?
The Russian invasion of Ukraine has sent a wave of unease across Eastern Europe, especially in Lithuania, Estonia, and Latvia. The three Baltic States joined NATO in 2004, but that might not matter to Russian President Vladimir Putin, who has out-guessed and outmaneuvered U.S. President Joe Biden and the rest of NATO since the crisis began.

What’s NATO’s Article 4 and why are people talking about it?
NATO has met to discuss a response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Article 4 of the organization’s treaty could play a key role.

Taiwan warns Chinese aircraft in its air defence zone
Taiwan’s air force scrambled again on Thursday to warn away nine Chinese aircraft that entered its air defence zone, Taiwan’s defence ministry said, on the same day that Russia invaded Ukraine, a crisis being watched closely in Taipei.

Just How Secure Do NATO’s Eastern Member States Feel Today?
Below, Michael makes an assessment that appears pretty likely: “I don’t think Europe or America will make large, generational alterations to their society or way of life on Ukraine’s behalf. The threat would have to be much more real.”

Russia Unleashes Its War
As I write this, Vladimir Putin has just finished a speech on Russian TV declaring a “special military action aimed at the demilitarization and de-nazification of Ukraine.”

Unusual Russian Navy Concentration Seen In Eastern Mediterranean
As the world watches Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, there is also a significant and purposeful Russian Navy presence in the Mediterranean. This is part of the same big picture. Today they have been observed sailing close together in an unusual formation.

How Ukraine Was Betrayed in Budapest
Kyiv gave up its nuclear weapons in return for security assurances. So much for that.

An Unserious People Confront a Serious Man
Call Vladimir Putin a dictator. Call him an autocrat. Call him a totalitarian. Call him whatever you want, but make sure you understand he is serious. He also knows the West is not. He has brought war to the West’s doorstep.

U.S. F-35s Forward Deployed To Romania, Estonia And Lithuania
The F-35As that were in Germany have been moved on the eastern flank on the day Russia has invaded Ukraine. Many NATO aircraft airborne. B-52 over Poland.

‘Russian warship, go f*** yourselves’: Final words of Ukrainian border guards protecting Snake Island – just 40 miles from Romanian border in the Black Sea – before Kremlin navy opened fire killing all 13 of them when they refused to surrender
All Ukrainian border guards protecting tiny island in the Black Sea from Russia were killed yesterday

We Are an Unserious Country
We didn’t have to wait long to hear the left bring racism into the Ukraine crisis, as noted here yesterday

We are an unserious country, cont’d
The Russian sanctions that President Biden announced at his press conference yesterday (White House transcript here) are a joke. ‘sanctions intended to deter Putin’s invasion of Ukraine? Why, yes, they were. Isn’t it a bit late to deter the Russian invasion of Ukraine? Why, yes, it is.

We are not a serious country (3)
It may be charitable to infer that President Biden and the officials running the show in his administration don’t have a clue. The question is implicit in Edward Wong’s February 25 New York Times story “U.S. Officials Repeatedly Urged China to Help Avert War in Ukraine.” Subhead: “Americans presented Chinese officials with intelligence on Russia’s troop buildup in hopes that President Xi Jinping would step in, but were repeatedly rebuffed.”

We are not a serious country (4)
Almost-president and former Obama administration Secretary of State John Kerry remains in the employ of the United States as a special envoy of the Biden administration. How special can you get?

Fight for Gostomel Airfield Emerges as Crucial Early Battle
It’s now about 3 a.m. in Ukraine, and the fight for control of an airfield in the northwest suburbs of Kyiv has become a focus of the war effort against the Russian invasion. Early Thursday, it was reported that elite Russian paratroopers (VDV) had seized control of the airfield at Gostomel. This force was estimated at about 150 troops, and the obvious goal was to use Gostomel as a base for landing more Russian forces. While reports of the battle are confused and preliminary, it appears that Ukrainian forces counterattacked, shot down some Russian helicopters, and have so far been able to prevent the Russians from landing reinforcements. Initial claims that the Russian force at the airfield had been “destroyed” were later clarified; it now seems that the battle at Gostomel is continuing. It’s easy to understand how crucial this battle is, simply by looking at a map. If the Russians could gain control of the Gostomel airfield, they could score a quick knock-out of the Ukrainian capital as part of what is being called their “decapitation” strategy.

Biden and EU Refuse to Do This One Thing That Would Nearly Destroy the Russian Economy
The Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) is a global network for payments between banks. International trade and finance would be next to impossible without it.

Hero Ukrainian soldier “blows himself up to destroy bridge: and stop Russian invasion forces storming in from Crimea
A HERO Ukrainian soldier blew himself up to destroy a bridge and stop Russian forces from storming in from Crimea.

Russian Tank Crushes Ukrainian Car With Civilian Inside in Shocking Video
Ahorrific video from the Ukrainian capital has shown the moment when what appears to be a Russian tank crushes a car with a civilian still inside.

‘Ghost of Kyiv’: Lone fighter pilot credited with shooting down six Russian jets
One Ukrainian fighter pilot dubbed the “Ghost of Kyiv” has emerged as an unconfirmed heroic figure as Ukraine pushes back against invading Russian troops.

New Sino-Russian Pact Threatens U.S.
Two weeks ago, just as Russia began positioning troops on Ukraine’s border, Russia and China announced an historic accord between the two countries that caught many in D.C. entirely off guard. Their surprise was rooted in the specificity and scope of the accord. This “red-on-red” alliance should be alarming… a warning shot of sorts that should it be disregarded will prove a profound threat to America’s energy security, economic stability, and geo-political dominance.

Patreon suspends page for Ukrainian army donations
Patreon is a San Francisco-based crowdfunding platform that was launched in 2013. A nonprofit page on the platform that fundraises for the Ukrainian army has been suspended and is under investigation by Patreon.

Tucker: Putin started this war and deserves the blame for what follows
Well … not quite. Carlson stressed last night that the U.S. should do everything possible to avoid being dragged into the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. But as others have noted, his tone did sound notably different from how it typically sounds. Why should American conservatives hate Putin, he wondered two days ago? Putin’s never called us racists. A day later he sneered that Ukraine was “a pure client state of the United States State Department,” implying that it’s hardly a real country at all. Which, coincidentally, is also Putin’s view.

Germany’s Aid in Ukraine’s Time of Need? 5,000 Helmets
As the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues apace, Germany continues to distinguish itself as the most lackluster and unreliable of the major NATO member states. The country has repeatedly refused to send lethal aid to Ukraine in the face of the Russian military buildup in recent months, pledging only to send 5,000 helmets — a meager offering, compared with the 100,000 helmets and protective vests that Ukraine originally requested.

Notes on the Catastrophe
In a war, or a similar catastrophe, you think of everyone, of course. You’re a human being. Man is man. But you can’t help thinking — thinking especially — of those you know personally

How Biden Helped Bring Us Here
Biden administration policies have made it much harder for the U.S. to tackle the Ukrainian crisis.

Biden Shared Intel with China — and China, Naturally, Shared That Intel with Russia
Historically speaking, Russia and China have had a complicated, often contentious, relationship, but they are probably closer today than ever before. The two recently signed a huge energy pact that allows Putin to weather the pain of Western sanctions. Then again, China also helped Russia endure sanctions after Crimea went the way of Tibet. So why would anyone believe that “President” Xi Jinping, who views the existence of Taiwan much in the same way Putin views the existence of Ukraine — or rather, non-existence — do anything to dissuade an invasion in the first place? Every justification by Putin for why he could invade Ukraine could just as easily be made for a Chinese invasion of Taiwan. What’s the downside for Xi?

Brave Ukrainian woman tells Russian soldier: “Put sunflower seeds in your pocket so they grow when you die”
More than 100 Ukrainians have died in the first day of war

UK bans Russian private jets from its airspace
British transport minister Grant Shapps said in a tweet on Friday that no Russian private jet can fly in UK airspace or touch down, effective immediately.

Russia threatens ‘military and political consequences’ if Finland, Sweden try joining NATO
Russia threatened “military and political consequences” against Finland and Sweden on Friday if they attempted to join NATO.

US microchip powerhouse Nvidia hit by cyber attack
Exclusive: Parts of its business are ‘completely compromised’ at time of Russian cyberwarfare against Ukraine

Live from Ukraine on Twitter
I don’t think there is a better place to follow breaking news than Twitter. I can’t vouch for the authenticity or accuracy of the videos, but these six tweets show up on my feed directly or indirectly via sources I have chosen to follow. Marc Thiessen and Michael Doran are of interest, as always. Each of the four following theirs is worth a look.

Early Signs that Russia Has Bitten Off More Than It Can Chew in Ukraine
Russia invaded Ukraine from three sides on Wednesday night Eastern time, and as of now, early afternoon Saturday, the Russian army has yet to seize any Ukrainian cities.

Kazakhstan to Putin: Pound sand
Vladimir Putin’s miscalculations in Ukraine have multiplied in the last two days. In the first place, the Russian army appears to be struggling to overcome the unexpectedly fierce resistance from fully mobilized Ukrainians, despite massive numerical and technological advantages. At the same time, allies whom Putin assiduously courted over the last several years have done an abrupt about-face, blasting Putin publicly over his naked aggression in Europe.

Kyiv: full consensus for disconnecting Russia from SWIFT has been achieved, the process has begun
Russia will be disconnected from the international payment system SWIFT. The official decision has not yet been formalized, but technical preparations for the adoption and implementation of this step have already begun, said Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba on his Facebook page.

Germany and Western allies agree cutting Russia out of SWIFT
Germany and its Western allies agreed to cut Russia out of the SWIFT global payment system, a spokesperson for the German government said on Saturday, in a third sanctions package aimed at halting Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Is the top Republican on the Senate intelligence Committee trying to tell us something about Putin?
An unusual tweet caught my attention last night. Senator Marco Rubio posted a veiled reference to Putin as he said he wished he could share more but…

Feeding the Bear: A Closer Look at Russian Army Logistics and the Fait Accompli
Russia’s military buildup along the border with Ukraine has clearly gotten the attention of policymakers from Kiev to Washington, D.C. CIA Director Bill Burns flew to Moscow to try to avert a crisis, while U.S. intelligence officials are reportedly warning NATO allies that a Russian invasion of large parts of Ukraine can’t be ruled out.

Russia warns that Biden’s sanctions could cause it to drop the International Space Station on the United States
Russian leadership threatened to allow the International Space Station (ISS) to crash into the United States or one of its allies following President Joe Biden’s recently announced sanctions on Russia.

Has Putin Actually Lost His Mind?
The casual speculation about Vladimir Putin’s mental state has become more serious.

Ransomware gangs, hackers pick sides over Russia invading Ukraine
Hacker crews are picking sides as the Russian invasion into Ukraine continues, issuing bans and threats for supporters of the opposite side.

Putin puts Russia’s nuclear forces on alert as fighting in Ukraine continues
In a dramatic escalation of East-West tensions over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, President Vladimir Putin ordered Russian nuclear deterrent forces put on alert Sunday in response to what he called “aggressive statements” by leading NATO powers.

Ukrainian ambassador: Russia “handing out gas masks” ahead of potential chemical attack
Russian forces are distributing “gas masks” among their troops in eastern Ukraine, according to a senior Ukrainian official who suggested that Russian forces might orchestrate a chemical attack under false pretenses.

The Blessings of St. Javelin
This image of a saint wielding an FGM-148 Javelin anti-tank missile has become an iconic symbol of the Ukrainian resistance to the Russian invasion. When you see video of destroyed Russian tanks and armored personnel carriers, chances are it was a Javelin that did the damage.

Pentagon Promotes Socialism to Combat China
Here’s our Friday roll-up of the most ridiculous stories from around the world that are threats to your liberty, risks to your prosperity… and on occasion, inspiring poetic justice.

Why Did Russia’s UN Ambassador Mention a ‘Dirty Bomb’?
Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine has been giving the world a crash course in Kremlin techniques of propaganda, misinformation, disinformation, and misdirection — for anyone not already well aware. We have heard plenty about this in recent weeks, not least from the Biden administration, which has been declassifying and releasing to the press information on what they’ve called Russia’s playbook.

Is regime change in Moscow the west’s new goal?
I don’t think regime change is the goal in the sense that the U.S. and NATO will accept nothing less. If Putin said “you win” and pulled out of Ukraine tomorrow, sanctions — at least the most oppressive sanctions — would lift. The goal in crippling Russia economically is to communicate to Putin how determined the west is to uphold its NATO commitments. The message to him is “We’re willing to go this far to defend a non-member ally like Ukraine. Imagine how much further we’d go to defend a member.”

Ukraine forming foreign legion while Russia offers talks, threatens nukes
This could turn out to be a highly interesting development in the ongoing Ukraine invasion saga. European nations and NATO members have repeatedly said that they will not be deploying troops to Ukraine to help them fight off the Russian invasion. But that doesn’t mean that highly motivated individuals not acting as members of other militaries or official representatives of other governments couldn’t volunteer to help, right? That’s apparently what Volodymyr Zelensky had in mind when he announced today that Ukraine would be forming a “foreign international legion” so that interested parties could enlist to help his nation beat back the Russians. Reminiscent of the French Foreign Legion, this could potentially allow volunteers from anywhere, including the United States, to travel to Ukraine’s borders with friendly countries and take up arms to swell their ranks. But how many people do you think might apply for such a tour?


Riots & Revolution


In bid to become first Black governor of Illinois, Richard Irvin says :All Lives Matter”
Invoking the dream of his formerly enslaved great-grandfather, Richard Irvin, the mayor of Illinois’ second largest city, jumped into the Illinois Republican primary race for Governor on Martin Luther King Day.


Corona Virus


Why is the CDC hiding so much COVID data?
Multiple explanations for the agency’s concealment are offered in this piece, all of them doubtless true. The CDC is a bureaucracy and bureaucracies are famously slow to move. The CDC’s data-processing abilities are outdated, the casualty of a federal government that wasn’t prepared for a pandemic. The CDC in some cases is relying on partial data and doesn’t want to publicize information it isn’t fully confident in.

The UK Govt Accepts COVID Lab Leak Theory “Behind Closed Doors”
Additionally, scientists find covid virus contains a DNA sequence patented by Moderna three years before the pandemic began.


Gun Rights


Next Time, Bear Arms Earlier
I’m often asked whether I think that a well-armed civilian population would help this or that country survive were it to be invaded by a hostile force. I usually say that I think it would. Apparently, the president of Ukraine thinks it would, too


Hide the Decline

Environment &
“Green Energy”


Putin’s Best Friend in the West: Environmentalists
The left is agitating about how Tucker Carlson and some other conservatives are making equivocal if not pro-Putin pronouncements, and I’ll look into and analyze this in a separate post tomorrow. For now, it suffices to point out that the left is once again playing a great game of misdirection or projection.

On Energy, the Chinese-Russian One-Two Punch
Steve has noted how America’s energy policies–suppressing fossil fuels and spending vast sums to develop inherently unreliable wind and solar energy–play into the hands of the Russians. While we waste trillions of dollars on expensive and unworkable energy sources, we simultaneously feed Russia’s export economy by buying Russian oil and gas. Meanwhile, if our “green dreams” are realized, we will allow them to run their economy on a far more efficient basis, with regard to energy, than our own.



Government in Healthcare


Almost All Of Top 25 Medical Schools Mandate Race-Based Training and Study, New Database Shows
“While our prior databases on higher education and elite private schools served as educational tools for students and parents making application decisions, the medical school database serves as a wake-up call for the public to pay attention to the damaging racialization of medical education.”

Health Canada says heroin is now a ‘new’ treatment option in Canada
Vancouver-based advocates weigh in.

Pushing Assisted Suicide for “Terminal” Anorexia
The push is now on to allow assisted suicide for psychiatric patients. The Journal of Eating Disorders has published a piece urging that psychiatrists be allowed to assist the suicides of patients afflicted with anorexia who want to die rather than continue to struggle against their mental illness.




Las Vegas woman gets prison in death of elderly man she shoved off bus: ‘It’s just not fair’
The victim had asked the defendant to be ‘nice to the passengers’

Rocky Top Goes Woke
How the University of Tennessee–Knoxville did an end-run around state legislators to implement a radical “antiracist” agenda.

Texas GOP woman candidate loses major endorsement after posting seminude Tik Tok video
A Republican woman running for Texas Railroad Commissioner received the endorsement of the San Antonio Express-News editorial board. The editorial board has rescinded its endorsement after she published a controversial Tik Tok video in which she sits seminude atop a pump jack. File this story under Things I Have Never Seen Before in Texas Politics.

California Parents Furious Male Counselors Slept in Same Room as Elementary Females at Science Camp
The school is in the Los Alamitos Unified School District, which has felt the wrath of parents in the past year due to its leftist and woke agenda.

School Board Fireworks as Fearless Mom Shows Maskless Photos of Chairwoman and Almost Gets Arrested
The Montgomery County, Va. school board meeting got heated on Feb. 15 when a parent confronted the chairwoman Susan Kass with maskless photos of herself in crowds while imposing mask mandates on the community’s children. The parent, Alecia Vaught, addressed the board and began by asking why Gov. Northam’s orders were followed regarding masks but Gov. Youngkin’s new bill to repeal mask mandates and make masks optional has been ignored.

One woman’s story of becoming a trans boy and later detransitioning
I saw people praising this piece on Twitter and wound up reading the entire thing. It offers a detailed and revealing first person perspective on how a teenage girl could go from mocking SJW’s to deciding that she was trans and needed to start living as a boy to be happy. Not surprisingly, one of the key drivers in this story was social media where as a young teen Helena discovered a fantasy world inhabited by unhappy teen girls just like herself.

Supreme Court formally ends Trump’s fight over Capitol attack records
The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday brought a formal end to former President Donald Trump’s request to block the release of White House records sought by the Democratic-led congressional panel investigating last year’s deadly attack on the Capitol by a mob of his supporters.

Emerson: GOP now get a majority and +9 in generic congressional ballot
And believe it or not, that’s not the worst news for Joe Biden and Democrats from today’s Emerson national poll, although it’s bad enough. Not only have Republicans taken a lead on the generic congressional ballot, Emerson’s survey shows a narrow majority for the GOP on a measure that normally only requires them to be within a few points to have a successful cycle.

Supreme Court Will Hear Religious-Liberty Challenge
The Supreme Court announced on Tuesday morning that it will hear the case of a Colorado web designer who declines, on First Amendment grounds, to serve same-sex marriages. The question the justices agreed to decide in the case, Creative LLC v. Elenis, is “whether applying public-accommodation law to compel an artist to speak or stay silent violates the free speech clause of the First Amendment.”

Indiana Senate GOP Folds on CRT and Parents
From Virginia governor Glenn Youngkin’s executive order against CRT, to the recall of three woke San Francisco school board members, to a passel of anti-CRT bills moving through state legislatures across the country, 2022 is shaping up as a banner year for efforts to wrest control of America’s schools from leftist ideologues and teachers’ unions.

The Latest in “Land Acknowledgments”
We reported here early last month about University of Washington Prof. Stuart Reges upending UW’s virtue-signaling “land acknowledgement” that is all the rage in academia right now. Today Inside Higher Ed picks up the story, with an interesting wrinkle. As argued here, if “land acknowledgements” are meant literally, they are the height of liberal hypocrisy, since “stolen land” by definition should either be returned to its rightful owner, or compensation should be paid. Not one university proudly proclaiming land acknowledgments is proposing to do this, nor will they ever.

LA Prosecutors and Hollywood Elite Back Recall of DA George Gascón
Imagine an area where the crime has gotten so bad and the criminals so blatant that Hollywood’s progressives are at least eyeing the Red Pill.

L.A. Deputy DA: Gascón Knew About Child Molester Tubbs Jail Calls Before Light Sentencing
“We have a DA who completely lacks any transparency, who’s sending a spokesperson on the news to say things that just aren’t true.”

Public Library-Linked Program Paying Teens To Attend “Spring Break Sex-Ed Camp”
The Austin Public Library in Texas is advertising a “Spring Break Sex-Ed Camp” at multiple branches in the city and surrounding area, it announced on its Instagram page Saturday.

Georgia bill would protect women’s sports
The Save Girls’ Sports Act would require that athletes compete according to their biological sex.

Is Rick Scott angling to challenge McConnell as Republican leader?
Yesterday Rick Scott released “An 11 Point Plan to Rescue America,” his version of a governing agenda for the next Republican congressional majority. Scroll through it and you’ll find some old favorites (end abortion, secure the border, get tough on crime) and some new ones (“stop left-wing efforts to rig elections”). There were two newsy aspects to his plan, one of which was the fact that it exists in the first place. After all, Mitch McConnell has decided that the Senate GOP won’t release any agenda of its own before the midterms, declining to say what Republicans will do if handed power by the electorate this fall. And there’s a strategic reason for that: McConnell wants the midterms to be a pure referendum on Biden’s first two years, not a choice between his vision for the country and the right’s. When you’ve got an incumbent in office who’s polling at 40 percent, you don’t interrupt him to float your own policy proposals. You point to him and say, “Do you really want this guy to have total control of government until 2025?”

As the US turns its Back on Western Classics, China Embraces Them
In 2019, the Society for Classical Studies, a non-profit North American scholarly organization devoted to all aspects of Greek and Roman civilization, held a rather memorable conference in San Diego. Titled “The Future of Classics,” panelists were asked for their opinions on “the diminution of our future role” in society. One of the panelists, Dan-el Padilla Peralta, an associate professor of classics at Princeton who researches and teaches the Roman Republic and early Empire, wasted no time in making his point, calling for all Classics to die “as swiftly as possible.” Peralta, a black academic, criticized Classics for their failure to represent non-whites, a criticism he still voices to this day. In May of 2021, Princeton caved into Peralta’s demands, and agreed to remove Greek and Latin course requirements for classics students in an effort to combat institutional racism.

DA Gascon’s sudden policy change on charging juveniles was prompted by some embarrassing jailhouse recordings
Last Friday afternoon, George Gascon’s office announced he was backing off on some of the progressive policies he’d put in place after taking office. Specifically, he now wanted to set up panels to evaluate “extraordinary” cases, including cases where juveniles could be tried as adults. At the time, I suggested Gascon might be reacting to the results of the SF School Board recall which had passed overwhelmingly earlier that week. But it turns out Gascon may have had another reason for changing his policies late on a Friday afternoon.

This Is Your Brain on Identity Politics, Part 285,792
At Slate, Mark Joseph Stern tries repeatedly to cast the Supreme Court’s announcement that it will consider the case of 303 Creative v. Elenis as some sort of looming judicial attack on LGBT people. But, because it’s not, he can’t quite manage it.

The Violence Against “Individuals” Act
A bipartisan group of senators has recently come to a deal to reauthorize the 1994 Violence Against Women Act, which expired in 2019. It’s not yet clear whether the measure has the 60 votes needed to pass the Senate, but its prospects are looking better now that negotiating Democrats agreed to drop a gun-control provision that many Republicans oppose. Ostensibly, the bill could proceed to a vote in the near future.

Tucker: Unlike Democrats, Putin’s never called me a racist
Here’s the most noteworthy snippet from last night’s much longer monologue that’s apparently being rerun on state-backed Russian media.

A political ad that’s full of BS — literally
Well, not literally. That’s not real feces in the ad. I think.

Kamala Harris ?? Rapists?
I assume Kamala Harris would claim to be opposed to rape. But during and after the George Floyd Riots, she not only contributed to but enthusiastically promoted a group called the Minnesota Freedom Fund. MFF pretended to exist for the benefit of “peaceful protesters,” but in fact it immediately bailed violent criminals of all kinds out of jail, most of whom had nothing to do with any sort of “protest” but were merely rapists, murderers, and so on.

Michael Bloomberg Warns Democrats They’re Headed for a “Wipeout” in November
“I am deeply concerned that, absent an immediate course correction, the party is headed for a wipeout in November, up and down the ballot.”

The Woke American Medical Association
The American Medical Association now tells doctors: Use woke language.

Texas moves to prosecute trans medical procedures on children as child abuse
The most recent development in the ongoing debate over transgender wokeism comes to us from Texas and it may light a fire that’s been coming for a long time. Governor Greg Abbott has directed various state agencies to promptly investigate instances of “transitional” medical procedures being performed on children under the state’s child abuse laws and prosecute those found to be engaged in such practices. Of course, when the Boston Globe covered this story, they chose to describe such procedures as “gender-affirming care.” This move by Abbott should properly be viewed as common sense, but sadly, such sensibilities are far from common these days and the medical community has continued an alarming slide toward woke political theory instead of actual science.

Biden Picks Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson As Supreme Court Nominee
President Joe Biden announced Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson as his Supreme Court nominee Friday.

What Senators Must Ask Supreme Court Nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson About Her Record, Judicial Philosophy
President Joe Biden has nominated U.S. Circuit Court Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer. Who is Jackson? What is her judicial philosophy? And how should senators evaluate her nomination?

Biden Officially Nominates Ketanji Brown Jackson For Supreme Court
If, and that’s a big IF, all Republican opposed her nomination to SCOTUS, that would result in a 50/50 split, and a constitutionally uncertain issue whether VP Kamala Harris could cast a tie-breaker.

University leadership told the student newspaper to stop printing. Students fought back and won.
Pro-free speech campus activism at Texas A&M University defeated the university president’s attempt to cease the print production of The Battalion, a student-run newspaper.

What Senators Must Ask Supreme Court Nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson About Her Record, Judicial Philosophy
President Joe Biden has nominated U.S. Circuit Court Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer. Who is Jackson? What is her judicial philosophy? And how should senators evaluate her nomination?

The Roots of Wokeness
Title VII damage remedies as potential drivers of attitudes toward identity politics and free expression.

Premier STEM college faces accusations of a dumb-downed education to advance equity
Is Harvey Mudd College sacrificing high standards for diversity, equity and inclusion?

Florida House Passes the Parental Rights in Education Bill
Florida’s House of Representatives passed the Parental Rights in Education bill yesterday. The legislation, if passed in the state’s Republican-majority Senate, would “prohibit discussion about sexual orientation or gender identity in certain grade levels or in a specified manner.”

“The American dream won!” Virginia Anti-Asian School Admission Scheme Halted By Federal Judge
“We won! You won! Our families stood up with moral courage against racism.”

Headphones change listeners’ perceptions, judgements, behaviors
Headphones have a much greater impact on listeners than external speakers because they put voices “inside your head,” a new study explains.

Inside the Woke Indoctrination Machine
After watching 100 hours of leaked video, we now fully grasp the danger of this ideology in schools.

Short Circuit: A Roundup of Recent Federal Court Decisions
Diet speech, judicial speech, and petition-related speech.

Federal Court Strikes Down Racial Balancing Policy Resulting in Discrimination Against Asian Applicants at Prominent Virginia Public School,
The new admissions policy at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology did not explicitly discriminate based on race. But the court found it was intended to reduce the number of Asian students admitted, in order to increase the percentage of students from other groups.

Public Records Requests Related to School “Diversity/Equity/Inclusion” Programs
An interesting new Pennsylvania administrative decision on the subject.

1 killed, 13 injured in shooting at hookah lounge in Las Vegas; manhunt for suspects underway
Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department is investigating a shooting early Saturday morning at Manny’s Glo Afterdark Hookah Lounge that killed one man and injured 13 others.

Are smartphones serving as adult pacifiers?
When Shiri Melumad was working on her doctorate in 2012, she found herself reaching for her smartphone during moments of stress, before a tough exam, for example. She didn’t always use it, she just held it. It was comforting.

Michigan School District Allegedly Spied on Parents’ Social Media Posts and Reported Them to Their Employers
“I was stunned. I have a stack that is like a phone book. This was an active group that wanted their kids back in school.”

Mark Levin at CPAC: We Love America Because It’s America, not Because We’re Nationalists.
Mark Levin trashed populism and nationalism at CPAC 2022 on Saturday, which was interesting considering how Donald Trump has been widely branded as a populist and many of his supporters identify as populists. But Levin insisted that “populism is progressivism” and “progressivism is American Marxism.”

Bill Barr Urges Republicans to Pick an “Impressive” and “Younger” 2024 Nominee Instead of Trump
In his new book, Bill Barr, who served as attorney general under President Trump, urges Republicans to nominate someone other than Trump in 2024.

University of Maryland’s Anti-Semitism Task Force Chief Has History of Anti-Semitic Statements
Diversity officer said Israel was engaged in ‘ongoing genocide and ethnic cleansing of Palestine’


Economy & Taxes


Russia and the West: The Danger of Trade Dependency
If there is one lesson that ought to have been learnt by now, it is that the extent to which the EU has allowed itself to become dependent on Russian natural gas has been remarkably reckless.

Despite Shorter Lines off L.A., Container Ships Find New Places to Get Stuck
On February 9, I wrote about how port congestion seemed to be reaching a plateau. The evidence to support that conclusion was the line of ships waiting for a berth at Los Angeles/Long Beach, which had seen a steep decline for the first time in a while. Unlike in the past, it seems that was not due to changing the way ships are counted, and the decline is genuine.

The Strategic Value of a Balanced Budget
I am a debt worrywart, but I try to avoid the “every issue is ultimately my issue” mode of analysis, the kind of thing that causes Senator Rubio to insist that protecting Florida sugar barons is a matter of national security.

Fewest Americans collecting unemployment aid since 1970
The number of Americans collecting unemployment benefits fell to a 52-year low after another decline in jobless aid applications last week.

The Economic Consequences of the War in Europe
War has returned to Europe. Vladimir Putin has begun a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, bombarding the country with artillery and missiles and attempting to take control of a critical airport. Columns of Russian tanks have rolled into the country. At the time of this writing, Russian forces are advancing toward Kyiv, the capital. Casualties are mounting. Ukrainians are fleeing their homes. Lines are long at the border crossing into Poland. This could become the largest conflict in Europe since the end of the Second World War.

Biden Touts Chinese-Backed Company at Made in America Event
Pentagon gives $35 million to subsidize MP Materials’s rare earth mineral production

Clark County official asks public for rent spike stories, calls for rent control
A Clark County commissioner is calling for change in Nevada rent laws after significant spikes have pushed Las Vegas Valley residents to their breaking points or even to homelessness.




Motion to extend Emergencies Act approved in House of Commons
The NDP voted in favour alongside the minority Liberals, with some expressing concerns a ‘no’ vote would have toppled the government

Physics Breakthrough as AI Successfully Controls Plasma in Nuclear Fusion Experiment
Successfully achieving nuclear fusion holds the promise of delivering a limitless, sustainable source of clean energy, but we can only realize this incredible dream if we can master the complex physics taking place inside the reactor.

Colombia court decriminalizes abortion, adding to regional momentum
Colombia’s constitutional court voted Monday to decriminalize abortion in the first 24 weeks of pregnancy, a transformative shift for the majority-Catholic country and the latest sign of a turning tide in Latin America.

Four in 10 people ‘not confident using numbers in their everyday lives’
FOUR in 10 (40 per cent) people do not feel confident about using numbers in their everyday lives, a survey has found.

This Venus Flytrap Could Revolutionize Brain Implants
Scientists are always on the lookout for ways to marry technology with nature. It seems they may have just struck a nerve—by creating an actual nerve.

9,000-year-old ritual complex found in Jordan desert
Archaeologists deep in the Jordanian desert have discovered a 9,000-year-old ritualistic complex near what is thought to be the earliest known large human-built structure worldwide.

‘Immediate emergency situation is over’: PM Trudeau revokes Emergencies Act
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the government will take steps to end the use of the Emergencies Act after it was invoked just over a week ago in response to the ongoing trucker convoy blockades and protests.

Canadian Senator: Trudeau Revoked Emergencies Act as Senate Leaned Towards Disapproval
The government’s representative in the Senate could not answer a simple question: “What exactly happened that the government decided to invoke the act?”

Trudeau’s ‘anti-hate’ bill will allow people to PREEMPTIVELY report Canadians for ‘hate speech’
Proposed hate speech legislation would allow people to take others to court if they suspect that someone will post content deemed hateful online.

With war over the border, young Hungarians scorn Orban’s Russian ties
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has never made any secret of his desire for warm ties with Russia and President Vladimir Putin.

More Controversy at Britain’s Transgender Youth Clinic
The National Health Service Trust overseeing Britain’s transgender youth clinic — which has been plagued by controversies — is facing discrimination claims after a job candidate who maintains that sex is an immutable characteristic was turned away on that basis.

The Coming Ukrainian Insurgency
Russia’s Invasion Could Unleash Forces the Kremlin Can’t Control

Japanese Conservatives Fight for Liberty in the Land of the Rising Sun
I’ve been fascinated with Japanese culture since I was young, so when I found out that representatives from the Japanese Conservative Union — the Japanese counterpart to the American Conservative Union — would be at CPAC, I knew I wanted to conduct an interview.




What Is Academic Freedom For?
The Winter 2021/22 issue of the Claremont Review of Books is out now, featuring contributions from, among others . . . me. My essay, “What Academic Freedom Is For,” is on conservatism and academic freedom. It is an attempt to chart the Right’s changing attitude toward the concept of academic freedom, from God and Man at Yale (which was subtitled The Superstitions of Academic Freedom, just to give you a sense of William F. Buckley’s thinking on the matter in that book) to now.

Stop Stigmatizing Community College
Many Americans look askance at community colleges, regarding them as schools for bad students who couldn’t get into a “real” college. That frame of mind, argues Lillian Diaz in today’s Martin Center article, is a huge mistake.

America’s Core Is Liberty, Not Democracy
We hear incessantly about how we must protect “our democracy” and why ensuring that as many people as possible vote is a national imperative. At the same time, prominent politicians such as Joe Biden mock the importance of liberty as though it were just an atavistic impulse.

The Democracy Illusion
In America, “democracy” or “democratic” are among the most common words used to justify or endorse positions or policies. “Democratic” is attached as an adjective whenever something is considered good politically (e.g., “our democratic way of life”), and “undemocratic” is attached to things being criticized (including almost everything that represents a loss for just about anyone).

It’s Academic
Yesterday, Maddy wrote about the almost unimaginable badness of much academic writing, noting that “the road to obscurity is paved with jargon.” In my previous work as an editor of volumes of academic essays, I encountered more leaden nonsense than I care to remember.

Energy Sovereignty Will Be the Westphalian Principle of the 21st Century
The United States is in a twenty-first-century competition for hearts and minds, and much of that competition will revolve around energy sovereignty.

Charlie Kirk Butchers the First Amendment in God’s Name
The Devil’s next finest trick, it seems, is to persuade us that the Constitution’s free-speech protections don’t actually exist.

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One Response to News of the Week (February 27th, 2022)

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