15:10 (at last) gets away from comparing good and bad people;
instead it warns of dire consequences…
10 Stern discipline awaits anyone who leaves the path;
the one who hates correction will die.
Guess what, Proverbialist? The one who loves correction dies
■ Our Google LFOD Alert rang for a Washington Examiner
article that's all about the University Near Here! Code
Yellow: Ambiguous, contradictory speech codes at the University of
New Hampshire. This is news, sort of; it's based on the Foundation for
Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) recent evaluation of UNH's
policy. Specifically, an alleged contradiction between two sections
of the current
Rights, Rules, and Responsibilities handbook.
While students may not assemble, solicit, or distribute literature
without a permit or approval per Section 23.4, they may solicit,
distribute literature, and interact with passersby per Section
“Why is it that in the Live Free or Die State, UNH desires to
regulate the right to free speech down to the transitory and
incidental nature?” Young Americans for Liberty Director of Free
Speech Alexander Staudt told Red Alert Politics. “It seems
to me that the First Amendment is very clear — there should be no
law, infringing on the right to free speech and peaceful assembly,
regardless of its incidental nature.”
I will offer a minor defense of UNH: its current "Yellow Light"
rating is an improvement over the "Red Light" it had
a few years ago. I don't know when it changed.
■ What's goin' down, civil-libertieswize, in New York? At
Cato, Trevor Burrus and Reilly Stevens tell it: New
York Attorney General Schneiderman Goes After Citizens United’s
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman demands out-of-state
charities disclose all donors for his inspection. He does not demand
this of all charities, only those he decides warrant his special
scrutiny. Schneiderman garnered national attention for his campaign
to use the powers of his office to harass companies and organizations who do not
endorse his preferred policies regarding climate change. Now, it
seems he seeks to do the same to right-of-center organizations that
might displease him. Our colleague Walter Olson has cataloged Schneiderman’s many misbehaviors.
He’s currently set his sights on Citizens United, a Virginia
non-profit that produces conservative documentaries. While Citizens
United has solicited donations in New York for decades without any
problem, Schneiderman now demands that they name names, telling him
who has chosen to support the group. Citizens United challenged this
demand in court, arguing that to disclose this information would
risk subjecting their supporters to harassment and intimidation.
As they note, Citizens United has become the "Emmanuel Goldstein of
the American left".
But it's a good thing that New York has so little crime that the AG
can harass groups and individuals exercising their First Amendment
■ NR's Ben Shapiro looks at Students’
Anti-Gun Views, as megaphoned by the MSM. Mr. Shapiro notes the
inconsistency (a) treating teenagers as if they had some special
insight into public policy matters; (b) treating them as
irresponsible children otherwise. His bottom line:
This discussion of young people’s political involvement leaves out
one crucial element: the responsibility of older people to help
inculcate expertise and reason in young people. The whole reason
that young people are generally less capable of strong
decision-making is that the emotional centers of the brain are
overdeveloped in comparison with the rational centers of the brain.
And it requires training to fully utilize what psychologist Daniel
Kahneman calls System 2 — the analyzing portion of the brain. It’s
the job of those who think most rationally to teach those whose
rationality is still developing. Leaving individual decision-making,
let alone general policy, to young people — those who respond most
strongly to System 1, the intuitive, emotional brain areas — may be
smart politics. After all, we all respond intuitively to slogans and
emotional appeals. But it makes for rotten policy.
But perhaps that’s the point. If we can turn children into our decision-makers, we can infantilize our politics down to simplistic statements like “you’re either with us or against us” on preventing school shootings. And that infantalization certainly helps come election time.
Why it's almost as if all this hoopla was a thinly disguised cynical
attempt to gain political power! Say it ain't so, CNN!
■ Which brings us to another LFOD alert, spurred by the LTE-writing Alan
Vervaeke in the Laconia Daily Sun. His contribution to adult
debate is a suggestion to the heartbroken: Shove
your thoughts & prayers. LFOD comes in for insulting
I won’t go into all of the adults who have died from gun violence
since 2014 — it’s just an obscene number and most of you simply
don’t care. I won’t explain how women are more likely to die in a
weaponized household. You make up stories about why God himself
ordained the Second Amendment just so you can cradle them to your
bosom at night; because you must “live free or die” and your guns
provide a means to do both. People with many guns in their home are
far more likely to suffer a deadly shooting in their home. That is a
statistical fact. If you own a gun, you are 33 percent more likely
to have a shooting in your home. If you have children in that home,
they are more likely to be the victim. Again — that is statistical
FACT. I hope it isn’t your child.
Alan closes with the irresponsible handwaving we've come to expect
from this hysterical debate: "do something".
You know what, Alan? Shove your "do something".
■ But sure, if we ignored the Second Amendment, and enacted
sweeping gun prohibitions, and put the government in charge of
deciding what things were just Too Scary for you to own, things would
be fine, right? Well…
Back to NR and the observations of David French: Our
Government Is Not Constructed for Competence.
It’s time for Americans to face facts. With few exceptions, our
governments — local, state, and federal — are not constructed to be
competent. The permanent class of civil servants —the career
officials who work for multiple presidents, governors, mayors, or
town officials — work within bureaucracies that are designed from
the ground up to be insulated from effective accountability and
discipline. They enjoy a job security that private-sector workers
can’t begin to imagine.
A few years ago, a
USA Today report rocketed around the Internet for a few
days and then faded into obscurity. Too bad. It should have
triggered an extended national conversation and extensive legal
reform. The headline was sensational, but true: “Some federal
workers more likely to die than lose jobs.” It traced the number of
employees laid off or fired in multiple federal agencies and found
that turnover was microscopic to nonexistent.
Even assuming that a federal worker is a better class of employee
than your average private-sector employee (a debatable presumption),
the numbers were amazing. The Federal Communications Commission and
the Federal Trade Commission collectively employed 3,000 people.
They fired no one. NASA employed almost 19,000 and fired
13. The EPA employed almost 19,000 and fired 19.
In other words, incompetence is baked into the bureaucratic cake.
But… we get the government "we" deserve. Darnit.