URLs du Jour

2018-06-30

[Amazon Link]

  • The Proverbialist is sometimes wise, but other times… Well, have a look at Proverbs 11:13:

    13 A gossip betrays a confidence,
        but a trustworthy person keeps a secret.

    "Duh. By definition."

    We can do this all day:

    13a Spendthrifts waste their money,
        but a prudent person saves for the future.


  • Another week, another horror story. But Amy Swearer at the Daily Signal reveals why we won't have to hear about it for very long: 2 Reasons Why the Media Will Drop Coverage of the Capital Gazette Shooting. Reason the first; because it doesn't fit the narrative.

    This shooting can’t be blamed on lax gun laws. Maryland has some of the strictest gun control laws in the country, earning it an A- rating from the Giffords Law Center—one of only six states to earn above a B+ score. It has enacted almost all of the gun control measures commonly proposed by gun control advocates.

    And yet, despite this, not only did this incident occur, but Baltimore is one of the worst cities in the U.S. for gun-related violence, and was recently named by USA Today as “the nation’s most dangerous city.” In the last sixth months, 120 Baltimore residents have been murdered with firearms—21 in the last 30 days. Maryland itself does not fit the gun control narrative.

    And (of course) it was a "gun-free zone". Yet somehow saying that didn't make it so.


  • National Review editors say goodbye and Good Riddance, Justice Kennedy.

    While it is true that Justice Anthony Kennedy was a disappointment to conservatives, the observation misses the point. Kennedy did not owe conservatives decisions that they liked. What all Americans deserved from him was the conscientious application of the law. That they did not get it is the true indictment of his time on the Supreme Court.

    Again and again, Kennedy made rulings that aggrandized the power of the Court and of himself as its swing justice. No justice, right or left, was more willing to substitute his judgment for that of elected officials and voters. No justice was less willing to tie himself down to clear rules or a legal philosophy that would constrain him in future cases, let alone rules or a philosophy that bore a plausible relation to the Constitution. We moved toward a system of government no Founder intended, in which his whim determined policy on a vast range of issues.

    As a (small) counterpoint: as Michael Barone points out, among others, "in every one of the past year’s 19 cases decided in 5-4 votes, he came out against the four Democratic-appointed justices."

    So there's that. Little question, however, that whoever Trump nominates will move the needle to a little-less-living Constitution.


  • Speaking of which, a USA Today symposium asks the musical question: Who should Donald Trump nominate to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy on the Supreme Court? Glenn Reynolds has his answer ready to go:

    Who would I pick from Trump's list? (And note how unprecedentedly transparent and helpful it is to have a president with such a list.) My personal first choice would be former Texas Supreme Court Justice and 5th Circuit Judge Don Willett. Writing in Patel v. Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, Willett quoted Frederick Douglass' joy on receiving the first money he earned as a free man and observed, "Douglass’ irrepressible joy at exercising his hard-won freedom captures just how fundamental — and transformative — economic liberty is. Self-ownership, the right to put your mind and body to productive enterprise, is not a mere luxury to be enjoyed at the sufferance of governmental grace, but is indispensable to human dignity and prosperity."  There are, sadly, few other judges who understand this.

    I think Justice Willett would be by far the best choice based on his Twitter feed. Example, on last year's anniversary of the Boston Tea Party:

    The Constitution would be in steady hands with Supreme Court Justice Willett.


  • The WSJ editorial page has a disturbing headline: Trump Boils Maine Lobstermen. (Also New Hampshire Lobstermen, but that's a quibble.)

    These should be halcyon days in lobstertown. Maine harvests more lobster than any other U.S. state or Canadian province. Last year it landed nearly 111 million pounds—its fourth-largest annual haul—which it sold for $450 million. The lobster industry accounts for 2% of Maine’s economy.

    And China represents a hungry new market. The post-molt lobsters Maine harvests from July through November have softer shells than Canadian lobsters, so they’re lower quality. But they also sell for several dollars less a pound. In the price-sensitive Chinese market, that has given the U.S. industry a competitive advantage over its Canadian counterparts. In 2017 the U.S. exported more than $137 million in lobsters to China, up from $52 million in 2015.

    Yet Mr. Trump’s unilateral tariffs are about to erode the price advantage of American lobsters. After the U.S. announced on June 15 plans to impose a 25% tariff on $50 billion in Chinese goods, Beijing retaliated with a new 25% tariff on American seafood, farm products and autos, effective July 6. That’s on top of the 10% to 15% tariffs China already imposes on U.S. and Canadian lobster.

    Initial reaction: "Well, that leaves more for us."

    But, really, you don't want to piss off the lobstermen from any state.


  • And in case you don't go to xkcd every day:

    [Rock]

    Must suck to be a rock.