URLs du Jour

2018-05-31

[Amazon Link]

  • Proverbs 12:11 is another mismatch, I'm afraid:

    11 Those who work their land will have abundant food,
        but those who chase fantasies have no sense.

    So knock off the Keno-playing and scratch ticket-buying, kids.


  • At Hot Air, John Sexton notes a recent correction: NY Times: Sorry For Missing 80% Of Trump’s Rally Audience.

    Tuesday the Times published a story on President Trump’s rally in Nashville. Author Julie Davis estimated the crowd size at the rally as a thousand people. Then, this morning, Trump complained about that aspect of the story […]

    And the Times later corrected the crowd estimate to 5,500.

    The point is not that the MSM gets things wrong now and again. It's that their getting-things-wrong pattern is far from random, always in favor of the current left/progressive "narrative".


  • Jim Geraghty's Morning Jolt from yesterday is (as usual) about a lot of different things, including Rosanne and World Cup Soccer, but his discussion of impeachment-demanding Tom Steyer is especially good. Here's Steyer from a recent interview:

    “What we know is there are millions of Americans who don’t vote because they are not hearing the truth,” said Steyer, who starts every interview by drawing a Jerusalem-cross pattern on the back of his hand — it’s the international sign of humility, he said, and a reminder to tell the truth, even if they put you on a cross for it. “They don’t think that the existing political establishment wants to talk about the basic questions of the day.”

    The hope being that hearing "the [pro-impeachment] truth" will cause these millions to pry themselves off the La-Z-Boy® and go to the polls.

    Sporadic voters don’t pay much attention to politics or government and they don’t want to pay attention. They know the election isn’t likely to come down to one vote, and so they don’t believe their vote will make a difference. There’s probably some cynicism at work, too. We’re on, what, the eighth or ninth consecutive “most important election of our lifetimes”? In the past decades, we’ve had Democrats win “most important election of our lifetimes” and Republicans win “most important election of our lifetimes” and for most people, life just plods on, with some good times and some bad times, rarely if ever directly tied to one party having political power.

    Steyer’s practicing that common form of political self-delusion, believing that there’s a teeming mass of non-voting people out there who agree with him, and who would come out in droves if someone would just come out and say exactly what Steyer wants them to say.

    Steyer is coy about running for President himself in 2020. Republicans are hoping he will.


  • Someone noted that, after mass shootings, gun-controllers like to talk about the "what" instead of the "who". Somewhat surprisingly, a New York Times article talks about the "who": For ‘Columbiners,’ School Shootings Have a Deadly Allure

    The May 18 mass shooting at Santa Fe provides the latest evidence of a phenomenon that researchers have in recent years come to recognize, but are still unable to explain: The mass shootings that are now occurring with disturbing regularity at the nation’s schools are shocking, disturbing, tragic — and seemingly contagious.

    Interviews with law enforcement officials, educators, researchers, students and a gunman’s mother, as well as a review of court documents, academic studies and the writings of killers and would-be killers, show that the school-shooting copycat syndrome has grown more pervasive and has steadily escalated in recent years. And much of it can be traced back to the two killers at Columbine, previously ordinary high school students who have achieved dark folk hero status — their followers often known as “Columbiners” — in the corners of the internet where their carefully planned massacre is remembered, studied and in some cases even celebrated.

    There's no doubt that the resources spent and attention given to gun control proposals could be more effectively directed toward looking proactively for signs of dangerous behavior in marginalized losers.


  • VA Viper highlights Kurt Vonnegut's May 29, 1945 letter home after imprisonment in an underground slaughterhouse during the Dresden bombing. Which of course went on to be the basis for Slaughterhouse-Five. Sample:

    On about February 14th the Americans came over, followed by the R.A.F. their combined labors killed 250,000 people in twenty-four hours and destroyed all of Dresden -- possibly the world's most beautiful city. But not me.

    The "250,000" number was a factor of ten over the best estimate of 25,000. Which is horrible enough. But it's speculated that Joseph Goebbels simply added a zero to the estimate for propaganda purposes.


  • Philip Greenspun comments on a recent NBC News article about the National Geographic Bee contest involving 54 students, winners of their local contests. Of which four (4) are female. Americans debate the gender ID of people who are good at something useless. From the NBC article, emphasis added by Phil:

    The National Geographic Bee’s gender imbalance puzzles teachers, parents and students. Some say that the tournament is fair but that educators need to actively foster geographic curiosity in girls, while others think the National Geographic Society is in violation of Title IX and needs to overhaul the bee’s design to promote better results for girls.

    We were just talking about Kurt Vonnegut, right? Maybe it's time to reread his short story "Harrison Bergeron."

    A commenter at Phil's site also notes "Indians have won the last 13 competitions; white-americans are more underrepresented than females." I'm pretty sure that's not exactly true, but there's certainly a lot of Indian-looking names in the most recent years on the winner list.