URLs du Jour

2019-01-16

[Amazon Link]

  • Let's do some equal time. A what's-the-big-deal query from Robby Soave at Reason: The Gillette Ad Tells Men Not to Hurt People. Why Is This Offensive?.

    Gillette, the shaving company, debuted a new commercial this week that assails "toxic masculinity" and challenges men to behave better toward women and each other. But since modern cultural discourse involves two constantly outraged tribes careening wildly from one controversy to the next, this perfectly inoffensive message has somehow been rendered bad by team red.

    Well, Robby, it's annoying to be preached to by corporations that presume to be morally superior.

    Also: presuming that an entire group bears the stigma of a subset of bad apples is invidious stereotyping, a gateway to bigotry.


  • At NR, Kevin D. Williamson reads the lefty mags (so we don't have to) and makes an interesting observation: Left Wing Pro-Russians Scoff at Collusion.

    The Nation, in particular, seems to have shed a few dozen IQ points since November 2016; its voice today is a good deal less Victor Navasky and a good deal more Joan Walsh, which is a good deal for no one. (Not even for Joan Walsh, really.) But The Nation is a bit less predictable than the median hysterical lefty in one interesting way: the skepticism of its writers regarding Russia’s role in the 2016 presidential election.

    In fact, The Nation is broadly defensive of Russia. From Jan. 11, 2019: “Proponents of the Trump–Russia collusion theory wildly overstate their case, again.” From January 9: “What Trump’s Syrian Withdrawal Really Reveals: A wise decision is greeted by denunciations, obstructionism, imperial thinking, and more Russia-bashing.” From Dec. 28, 2018: “New Studies Show Pundits Are Wrong About Russian Social-Media Involvement in U.S. Politics: Far from being a sophisticated propaganda campaign, it was small, amateurish, and mostly unrelated to the 2016 election.”

    The Nation used to be hilariously pro-Soviet; if you can dig up P. J. O'Rourke's tale of his 1980s trip to the Soviet Union under the magazine's auspices, do so.


  • The Google LFOD alert rang for an article in Ammoland by Jared J Yanis: Red Flag Bill Submitted in New Hampshire. Oh oh.

    An Extreme Risk Protection Order Bill (ERPO) has been submitted in the gun friendly State of New Hampshire…the “Live Free or Die” state.

    Jared argues, plausibly, that such bills, which allow judges to "suspend" (via confiscation) an individual's access to guns, "have only one intended goal: to circumvent the 2nd Amendment and confiscate guns from people who are then considered guilty until proven innocent."


  • And at Cato, Matthew Larosiere notes another tactic used by the controllers: The ATF Attempts to Deny Non-Binary and Trans Americans Guns.

    At the end of January, someone at the National Shooting Sports Federation asked the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) about non-binary people purchasing firearms. The ATF responded that, despite gender non-binary licenses being acceptable identification, the individual must still select either “male” or “female” on the standard firearm transfer form 4473.

    The ATF’s rigid, unreasoned response makes it clear there’s a huge disconnect between the purpose of the form, and the ATF’s interpretation. Form 4473, which everyone must fill out when they purchase a firearm from a federally licensed dealer, is intended to identify the purchaser of the firearm, have them confirm they are legally eligible to receive the firearm, and give enough identifying information to run a background check.

    That poses a dilemma for Progressives: do you side with the LGBTQ people wanting weaponry, or the bureaucrats?


  • At Wired Adam Rogers writes on a recent visitor to our solar system, currently headed out of town: Is ’Oumuamua an Alien Spaceship? Sure! Except, No.

    Is it possible that ‘Oumuamua, the nominally cigar-shaped, somewhat mysterious visitor that a Hawaiian telescope spotted leaving our solar system in 2017, might be neither comet nor asteroid but an alien spacecraft? Not a rock whirling through the uncaring void but the fossilized wreck of a magnificent, light-powered starship?

    Well … it’s possible. A little bit. Is it likely? Hah. No.

    Fun to speculate, though. Assuming it's just an odd-shaped rock, its mere occurrence means that such objects must be vastly more common than previously thought.