URLs du Jour


  • This is … CNN: Fact check: Biden makes at least four false statistical claims at CNN town hall.

    Yes, however mildly and forgivingly, they did point out that President Wheezy had a bad case of Malarkeyism:

    We're still looking into some of the claims Biden made, so this article is not comprehensive. But we can tell you now that he made at least four false claims -- all of them involving statistics -- about the minimum wage, undocumented immigrants, China's economy and Covid-19 vaccinations.

    Well, statistics! That's a hard subject! Who could expect a geezer like Joe to have statistics right?

  • Ann Althouse takes the WaPo "fact checker", Glenn Kessler, to school:

    Biden is making a lot of misstatements of fact. The WaPo fact checker, Glenn Kessler, writes:

    During his recent town hall on CNN, President Biden made a number of mistaken claims and assertions. He suggested racehorse owners receive tax breaks worth $9 billion, almost enough to pay for free attendance at community college — a claim that left tax experts scratching their heads. He said that the $7.25 minimum wage set in 2009 would be worth $20 if indexed for inflation, a statement that only makes sense if you are measuring from 1968. He wrongly stated that “vast majority” of undocumented immigrants were not Hispanic.

    No Pinocchios assigned for any of that. It's all so obviously wrong that maybe it's not worth bothering to investigate. But Kessler's approach in these columns is, I think, to isolate one thing and figure out where it stands on the continuum from utter truth to bald-faced lie. Here, he's chosen the 17,000 with Xi Jingping assertion. 

    Ann detects a Kesslerian Double Standard between Trump's treatment and Biden's. As befitting a retired professor, she observes: "Biden gets graded on a curve."

  • And the least surprising headline of the day comes from Axios and ace reporter Felix Salmon: Trust in media hits new low.

    Of course. But what's the remedy? Well…

    Media outlets can continue to report reliable facts, but that won't turn the trend around on its own. What's needed is for trusted institutions to visibly embrace the news media.

    Emphasis added.

    In other words: "media outlets" are doing just fine! Just keep on reporting "reliable facts", like you've been doing all along, media outlets!

    Instead, we need "trusted institutions" to start propagandizing on behalf of the media.

    Salmon specifically mentions CEOs as one of those "trusted institutions".

    Felix, you know the easiest way for a "trusted institution" to lose that trust? Start telling me things I know aren't true.

  • Jeff Jacoby advises both sides: Don't get hooked on executive orders. He details the whipsaw nature of EOs between Obama → Trump → Biden.

    This has become the norm in American politics, and it should disturb anyone who values representative government and constitutional order — regardless of partisan loyalty. Americans who condemned Obama for bypassing Congress and unilaterally changing policy should have been just as unhappy when Trump later did the same thing. If a president's moves to govern by diktat were alarming under Trump, they should be no less worrisome under Biden. Yet too many pundits and politicos condemn executive imperiousness only when it comes from presidents they don't like. When they support the occupant of the White House, their response is more like that of Paul Begala, one of Bill Clinton's political advisers, who in 1998 summarized the appeal of presidential reliance on executive orders.

    "Stroke of the pen, law of the land," Begala told the New York Times. "Kind of cool."

    It's not cool, man.

    Biden should put down the duckie pen. And Congress should start doing its job of legislating.

  • Patterico has a Substack presence. Unfortunately (but understandably) unfree. But he plugs it on his blog, and includes an excerpt on income inequality that's very good. Working off the story of Dr. Gokal (the Houston was fired for "stealing" COVID vaccines, i.e. vaccinating people with shots that would have otherwise been thrown out) and the CDC's decision for race-based vaccination guidelines:

    So we have now seen two stories — the story of Dr. Gokal and the story of the CDC’s prioritization of vaccines — where officials came to the conclusion that the pursuit of “equality” may be worth sacrificing lives. (Only certain lives can be sacrificed, of course. When you’re seeking equality, some are more equal than others!) Which leads me to my final topic: that of “income inequality.”

    Is there any stupider phrase in the English language?

    Let me be clear: income inequality is never a real problem. If it were, there would be an easy solution: pick the person with the lowest income, and then make everyone else “equal” to that person. If everyone is equally poor, they are still “equal” — and there is no longer any income inequality.

    There will be crushing poverty, but that’s OK, right?

    A point I've made myself, but not so well.

  • Veronique de Rugy notes the coming corporate welfare: Never Let a Good Manufactured Crisis Go to Waste.

    A seemingly effective way for politicians to justify our need for their services is to fabricate or exaggerate a problem, promise to fix said problem with a new program or lots of spending and then claim victory in the form of public acclaim and reelection.

    A good example of this behavior is President Joe Biden's Build Back Better plan, which reflects a tweet by then-candidate Biden that he does "not buy for one second that the vitality of American manufacturing is a thing of the past."

    His plan asks for $400 billion to purchase American-made equipment, along with $300 billion in government spending on research and development. Hundreds of billions of dollars' worth of additional subsidies will be used to encourage the production and sale of other domestically manufactured products.

    Joe, the easiest way to ensure the non-viability of American manufacturing is to make it dependent on billions in unsustainable government spending.