URLs du Jour

2019-05-21

[Amazon Link]

  • At the Bulwark, Christian Vanderbrouk asserts that we are becoming A Nation of Fake Lawyers.

    A generation ago, the politically aware citizen with a bee in his bonnet might write a letter to his member of Congress or the newspaper. Today he’s spamming memes across Twitter and Facebook, and applying engagement metrics to A-B test the most effective lines of attack.

    As a result, Americans are embracing sophistry, and arguing more like litigators than citizens. This is especially true for discussions about presidential accountability, which take place in the gray area between four quadrants: the legal, the political, the moral, and the prudent.

    For example, Christian continues, take the emoluments clause. How hard is that to understand, even without passing the bar exam?

    Well, Christian thinks it's a slam-dunk against Trump. Maybe!


  • At NR, Rich Lowry deploys a gun-violence metaphor: Bernie Sanders Targets Charter Schools.

    Few things offend Bernie Sanders as much as people escaping from command-and-control government systems, even minority students whose parents are desperate to get their kids a decent education.

    The socialist wants to turn George Wallace on his head and not block black children from attending traditional public schools, but block them from exiting those schools for something better.

    Sanders' proposal wouldn't affect "the rich"; like Barack Obama and Arne Duncan, they can afford to opt out of government schools and send their kids elsewhere. But Bernie's not just "targeting" the charter schools, he's targeting the kids whose parents can't afford other options.


  • And the (possibly paywalled) WSJ published a pun-filled op-ed on the metric system from James Panero: Be a Leader, Not a Liter.

    World Metrology Day is Monday. Forgive me if I don’t raise a pint—sorry, 473 milliliters—in commemoration. This date is meant to celebrate the International System of Units, otherwise known as the metric system. Against pascals of pressure, the U.S. stands nearly alone in maintaining its own “customary units” of weights and measures. We should stand tall on our own 2 feet. The metric system has never measured up. It was customary units that calibrated the machinery of the Industrial Revolution and took us 240,000 miles to the moon.

    Proponents of the metric system have been metering out contempt since their inhuman invention emerged from the French Revolution. In 1793 France’s own customary units, including the pied du Roi (king’s foot), fell victim to Jacobin Terror. The radicals standardized regional differences and went the extra mile, rationalizing their measures through the blinding logic of Enlightenment thought.

    The single reasonable argument for the metric system was (allegedly) easy calculation; just move the decimal point! But that argument went out the window when calculators became cheaper than dirt. And today, you don't even need that: Google will be happy to tell you the speed of light in furlongs per fortnight (1.803 x 1012).


  • And Iowahawk has taken his priceless schtick to Twitter these days where (as the Daily Wire reports) he's happy to use the media to mercilessly mock the sophisticates. Latest mockable example from a Politico reporter:

    Just one of the Hawk's tweets:


  • And, yes, I know Jimmy Fallon can be Politically Tedious, but he can also be wonderful, especially if you are a Who fan: Jimmy Fallon, The Who & The Roots Sing "Won't Get Fooled Again" playing Classroom Instruments.

    I look at some folks and say "Wow, that guy has the best job ever." Often about Dave O'Brien, NESN announcer for Red Sox games. But Jimmy Fallon is right up there too.