Saturday, October 17, 2020

Everything is 'White Supremacist'

 Big eyerolls here, but it's absolutely true.

And it's the most stupid thing. I feel bad for white people, especially meekly progressive whites who are too afraid of being labeled "racist" (and having their lives destroyed) to stand up to the bullying. 

At NYT, "'White Supremacy' Once Meant David Duke and the Klan. Now It Refers to Much More":

"As July 4 and its barbecues arrived this year, the activist and former N.F.L. quarterback Colin Kaepernick declared, “We reject your celebration of white supremacy.”

The movie star Mark Ruffalo said in February that Hollywood had been swimming for a century in “a homogeneous culture of white supremacy.”

The director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, one of New York City’s most prestigious museums, acknowledged this summer that his institution was grounded in white supremacy, while four blocks uptown, the curatorial staff of the Guggenheim decried a work culture suffused in it.

The Los Angeles Times editorial board issued an apology two weeks ago describing itself as “deeply rooted in white supremacy” for at least its first 80 years. In England, the British National Library’s Decolonising Working Group cautioned employees that a belief in “color blindness” or the view that “mankind is one human family” are examples of “covert white supremacy.”

In a time of plague and protest, two words — “white supremacy” — have poured into the rhetorical bloodstream with force and power. With President Trump’s overt use of racist rhetoric, a spate of police killings of Black people, and the rise of far-right extremist groups, many see the phrase as a more accurate way to describe today’s racial realities, with older descriptions like “bigotry” or “prejudice” considered too tame for such a raw moment.

News aggregators show a vast increase in the use of the term “white supremacy” (or “white supremacist”) compared with 10 years ago. The New York Times itself used the term fewer than 75 times in 2010, but nearly 700 times since the first of this year alone. Type the term into Twitter’s search engine and it pops up six, eight or 10 times each minute.

The meaning of the words has expanded, too. Ten years ago, white supremacy frequently described the likes of the Ku Klux Klan and David Duke, the neo-Nazi politician from Louisiana. Now it cuts a swath through the culture, describing an array of subjects: the mortgage lending policies of banks; a university’s reliance on SAT scores as a factor for admissions decisions; programs that teach poor people better nutrition; and a police department’s enforcement policies.

Yet the phrase is deeply contentious. Influential writers such as Ta-Nehisi Coates and Ibram X. Kendi, a Boston University professor, have embraced it, seeing in white supremacy an explanatory power that cuts through layers of euphemism to the core of American history and culture. It speaks to the reality, they say, of a nation built on slavery. To examine many aspects of American life once broadly seen as race neutral — such as mortgage lending or college faculty hiring — is to find a bedrock of white supremacy.

“It is not hyperbole to say that white supremacy is resting at the heart of American politics,” Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor of Princeton, a socialist activist and professor of African-American studies, said in a speech in 2017.

But some Black scholars, businessmen and activists — on the right and the left — balk at the phrase. They hear in those words a sledgehammer that shocks and accuses, rather than explains. When so much is described as white supremacy, when the Ku Klux Klan and a museum art collection take the same descriptor, they say, the power of the phrase is lost.

Prof. Orlando Patterson, a sociologist at Harvard University who has written magisterial works on the nature of slavery and freedom, including about his native Jamaica, said it was too reminiscent of the phrases used to describe apartheid and Nazi Germany.

“It comes from anger and hopelessness and alienates rather than converts,” he said.

The label also discourages white and Black people from finding commonalities of experience that could move society forward,

Professor Patterson and others said. “It racializes a lot of problems that a lot of people face, even when race is not the answer,” Professor Patterson said.

Glenn C. Loury, a conservative-leaning economics professor at Brown University, hears in the term an attempt to spin a mythic narrative about a fallen America.

“So we declare structures of our country are implacably racist,” Professor Loury said. “On the other hand, we make appeals to have a conversation with that country which is mired in white supremacy? The logic escapes me.”

Then there are those whose cultural signposts are found outside the Black-white divide. The essayist Wesley Yang, the son of Korean immigrants and the author of “The Souls of Yellow Folk,” often examines racial identity and has found himself watching the debate over these words as if through a side window. Did this thing called white supremacy really so neatly define the lives of Black people and Latinos and Asians?

“The phrase is destructive of discourse,” he said. “Once you define it as something that has a ghostly essence, it’s nowhere and everywhere”..."

Geoffrey Parker, The Military Revolution

At Amazon, Geoffrey Parker, The Military Revolution: Military Innovation and the Rise of the West, 1500-1800.




New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's Labour Party Wins Landslide Election

This is not good. 

Have you paid attention to this woman? She's a budding leftist totalitarian, and New Zealand voters handed her at least three more years of power. Remember, she forced a major gun confiscation program following the Christchurch massacre in 2019, and New Zealand's coronavirus crackdown this year is perhaps the most draconian of any democracy on earth. 

And she's a creepy "Karen" type of woman who assumes she knows what's best for you. "Cringe" is only putting it mildly. 

At the New Zealand Herald, "Election results 2020: Labour's Jacinda Ardern wins second term, crushes National's Judith Collins; Winston Peters and NZ First out; Act's David Seymour and Greens' James Shaw and Marama Davidson get 10 MPs each."

The Sydney Morning Herald, "Victory an endorsement for Jacinda's steady hand in unsteady times." 

And the Guardian U.K., "New Zealand election 2020: Jacinda Ardern to govern New Zealand for second term after historic victory -- New Zealanders give Labour more votes than at any other election in past five decades."


Thursday, October 15, 2020

Big Tech Censors Blockbuster Hunter Biden Exposé

 Definitely got the Streisand Effect going on here. 

Twitter made this an even bigger story by trying to block readers from sharing it. 

At WSJ, via Memeorandum, "Facebook, Twitter Limit Sharing of New York Post Articles That Biden Disputes."

And at today's New York Post, via Memeorandum, "Emails reveal how Hunter Biden tried to cash in big on behalf of family with Chinese firm."

This is big. We'll see how things play out. 

Also, at Instapundit, "AS THEY SHOULD: Twitter, Facebook face blowback after stopping circulation of NY Post story."

And Hot Air, "Biden Campaign Lashes Out at New York Post."




Washing Up

 Well, Twitter does have its uses. 



Thursday, October 8, 2020

Viral Ocean Spray 'Dreams' Star Nathan Apodaca

I saw it on Twitter the day it went viral, and boy did this guy gain fame fast.


Jennifer Delacruz's Thursday Forecast

She's broadcasting from home again. For ABC 10 News San Diego:




Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Celebrities Strip Down for Voter Registration Campaign

I just love Sarah Silverman's dad, Schleppy!


Monday, October 5, 2020

Jumbo's Clown Room

At LAT, "How out-of-work strippers made their show virtual and are ‘taking the power back’."



Friday, October 2, 2020

Hannah Arendt, On Revolution

Hannah Arendt, On Revolution.




Saul Friedlander, The Years of Extermination

At Amazon, Saul Friedlander, The Years of Extermination: Nazi Germany and the Jews, 1939-1945.

Klaus P. Fischer, Nazi Germany

At Amazon, Klaus P. Fischer, Nazi Germany: A New History.

Trump Tests Positive for Coronavirus

Say a prayer for the president and his wife. Hope Hicks too. 

It's been nonstop bombshell news for days now, some of it genuine news (and most of it propaganda from the leftist media complex --- here's looking at you New York Times). 

Check Memeorandum for all the headlines. 

And at LAT, "President Trump and first lady test positive for the coronavirus."

The media's descended into hysteria. On CNN a little while ago, Dana Bash, Kaitlan Collins, and Dr. Sanjay Gupta all looked like they'd just woken up or hadn't been to sleep. Brian Stelter declared an international emergency. Oh brother. It's four in the morning back east. What a nightmare. And to think, I watched baseball all day yesterday, then streamed "Big Brother" with my wife, and then the news hit. Unfortunately, there's just one MLB playoff game until Monday. The Cubs and Marlins are making up a rained out game later today, and after that I'll just stream some shows I guess. 

This election's killing me lol. 



Monday, September 28, 2020

Philip K. Dick, The Man in the High Castle

Philip K. Dick, The Man in the High Castle.




Fear and Loathing: The Election's 'Gonna Be Like War'

 At LAT, "‘It’s going to be like war.’ Voters eye 2020 election outcome with fear and loathing":


When Jim Jackson looks ahead to November, he cringes at what he sees: a defeated President Trump refusing to leave the White House and his supporters waging war to keep him there. 
“The militias and the white supremacists ... they’re going to put out the call to arms,” said Jackson, 73, who lives in the conservative-leaning suburbs of Milwaukee and voted Republican for 52 years, but not for Trump. “That’s my worst nightmare.”
Jeanine Davis shares his concern, though for different reasons.

Seated near the Huntington Beach Pier, wearing a red “Keep America Great” hat, the Trump supporter suggested Democrats will do whatever it takes to elect Joe Biden, and riot if they fail. “It’s going to be like war amongst citizens,” said Davis, an executive recruiter in her 50s.

Candidates often say a presidential contest is the most important ever, telling voters to act as though their life depended on it and the country’s future was at stake. Dozens of conversations with voters across the nation — from the West Coast to the Upper Midwest to the East — suggest that, this time, many people really believe it.

Punished by pandemic, buckled by economic hardship and riven by relentless partisanship, America is facing an election unlike any in modern times, a vote shadowed by menace and fringed with paranoia — much of it fed by the occupant of the Oval Office, who incessantly acts to undermine confidence in the result.

“He’s essentially trying to pull off a coup,” said Frank Dudek, a 70-year-old retiree, after casting his ballot at an early vote center in Arlington, Va., just outside the nation’s capital.

Some voters worry about frayed family ties. Others see the whole country unraveling. A significant number consider threats and violence a reasonable way to solve partisan differences.

“You have all these things — the pandemic, the protests, the counterprotests, the Black vs. white, the right against the left,” said Allison Trammell, 60, an Atlanta social worker who supports Biden. “It’s almost like everything is coming up at the same time and there’s no equilibrium. There’s no middle ground.”

What is more, many are acting on their fears, anticipating all manner of chaos, up to and including armed insurrection. They’re flooding gun stores and shooting ranges, stockpiling ammunition and provisioning for a postelection dystopia.

Ashley Avis, a 36-year-old nurse, was recently out with her father and 2-year-old son in Pinellas Park, Fla., buying plywood to board up their windows in case of civil unrest. She also plans to secure an alternative water supply, lest the public works around Tampa Bay are taken out of commission.

“We’re hoping for the best,” said the Trump supporter. “We’re preparing for the worst.”

Across the country, in a working-class neighborhood on Las Vegas’ east side, Michael Martinez said he, too, planned to lay in extra food and water “just in case there’s a disruption in our food delivery systems and whatnot.”

“I wouldn’t put it past some people” if Trump loses, said Martinez, 69, a retired union carpenter and Biden supporter. “That’s the way they’ll try to disrupt the economy, try to disrupt the way we live now.”

Not everyone sees election day as the dawn of a coming apocalypse.

Dave Gorrasi, who owns Blue Hook Aquatics just outside Cincinnati, says he believes the talk of widespread upheaval is a device both sides are using to gin up support.

“I think there is going to be less trouble once the election’s done because then we can go back to normalcy,” said the 41-year-old political independent, who is still undecided...

Still more.

 

'Can't Stop'

 RHCP, from my errand-run early this morning, at 93.1 Jack FM Los Angeles.

"Can't Stop."


Suddenly Last Summer

The Motels

12:00pm


Runaway

Bon Jovi

11:56am


Down Under

Men At Work

11:46am


Thats All

Genesis

11:41am


The Distance

CAKE

11:38am


Sunday Bloody Sunday

U2

11:34am


Highway To Hell

AC/DC

11:30am


Time Of Your Life

Green Day

11:28am


Born To Run

Bruce Springsteen

11:22am


Just Another Day

Oingo Boingo

11:17am

 

Rock The Casbah

Clash

11:13am


Hey Jealousy

Gin Blossoms

11:10am


Hotel California

Eagles/Don Henley

11:03am


Bizarre Love Triangle

New Order

11:00am


Use Somebody

Kings Of Leon

10:56am


Rio

Duran Duran

10:45am


Centerfold

J. Geils Band

10:41am


Loser

BECK

10:38am


I Need To Know

Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers

10:35am


Enjoy The Silence

Depeche Mode

10:31am


Cant Stop

Red Hot Chili Peppers

10:26am


Talking In Your Sleep

Romantics

10:15am


No One Like You

Scorpions

10:12am


Saturday, September 26, 2020

Friday, September 18, 2020

We Are All Algorithms Now

 Andrew Sullivan is so damn good. It's freaky, too, since he's such a weird guy

But this is really good. I look forward to Fridays, when I can read his column. I think Matt Taibbi posts his big pieces on Friday as well, so I'm going to go troll over there for a while, to see what he's got going. 

Here's Sully, "Is that what's really destroying the legitimacy of our democracy?":

Remind yourself that hefty chunks of our society still insist that Covid19 is a hoax, perpetrated for the sake of social control. Re-read Richard Hofstadter. Remember how vast numbers of white liberals drastically shifted their view of America — almost overnight — from a flawed but vibrant multiracial democracy to a version of apartheid South Africa because of a single video of a brutal arrest and murder. This week, I watched videos of people literally burning Harry Potter books, like latter-day Nazis, in the cause of transgender liberation. It’s safe to say, I think, that many of these people have lost their minds — just by staying online. And they not only think they’re perfectly sane; they think they’re heroes.

And online is increasingly where people live. My average screen time this past week was close to ten hours a day. Yes, a lot of that is work-related. But the idea that I have any real conscious life outside this virtual portal is delusional. And if you live in such a madhouse all the time, you will become mad. You don’t go down a rabbit-hole; your mind increasingly is the rabbit hole — rewired that way by algorithmic practice. And you cannot get out, unless you fight the algorithms to a draw, or manage to exert superhuman discipline and end social media use altogether.

But the thing about algorithms and artificial intelligence is that they don’t rest, they have no human flaws, they exploit every weakness we have, and have already taken over. This is not a future dystopia in which some kind of AI robot takes power and kills us all. It is a dystopia already here — burrowed into our minds, literally disabling the basic mental tools required for democracy to work at all. 

If you watch video after video of excessive police force against suspects, for example, and your viewing habits are then reinforced by algorithms so you see no countervailing examples, your view about the prevalence of such excessive force will change, regardless of objective reality. A new study shows how this happens.

RTWT.

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Monday, September 14, 2020

Between 30 and 50 Percent of West Virginia Schools Lack Internet Access

Fascinating. Kinda sad, but fascinating.

Not sure if the figures include private schools, but either way, it's unreal.

At WSJ, "Remote Schooling Out of Reach for Many Students in West Virginia Without Internet":
HARTS, W.Va.—Just before 9 a.m., Hollee Blair sat in her boyfriend’s Toyota Tacoma in the parking lot of Chapmanville Regional High School and waited for attendance to be taken.

With no broadband internet at home, Ms. Blair, a 17-year-old honors student who plans to study nursing after high school, used her boyfriend’s iPhone to connect to the school’s Wi-Fi for an hour-long orientation over Zoom.

“I’ll do whatever it takes to keep up,” said Ms. Blair, shielding her eyes so she could see the phone’s screen. “If it means doing this every day, I’ll do it. It’s worth it.”

Much of southern West Virginia had already been struggling with a drug epidemic and persistent poverty before the coronavirus pandemic took hold here. Now, as students return to school online, the region is coming up against another longstanding challenge: a lack of broadband internet access.

Nationwide, about 21 million people lack access to broadband, according to the Federal Communications Commission. When people with slow or unreliable internet connections are included, the number swells to 157 million, nearly half the U.S. population, according to a study by Microsoft Corp.

Providing service in sparsely populated areas is typically more costly and less profitable than in suburbs and cities. In Appalachia, the terrain has made it difficult to install and maintain the infrastructure necessary for broadband.

In West Virginia, between 30% and 50% of K-12 students don’t have internet access at home, according to the state Department of Education. By the start of school on Tuesday, the state had set up nearly 850 Wi-Fi hot spots at schools, libraries, National Guard armories and state parks for students.

So far, nine of West Virginia’s 55 counties, including Logan County, where Ms. Blair lives, are teaching all classes remotely after spikes in Covid-19 cases pushed them above a threshold for new daily cases set by the state.

But in the state’s other 46 counties, many students will still need to connect online as some districts choose a blended model that mixes in-person and remote classes. Counties may also be required to halt in-person classes if case levels rise too high.

Logan County has had 536 cases of Covid-19 and 36 related deaths.

This week, Gov. Jim Justice lifted a $50 million cap on how much the state can receive from a fund created by the FCC to bring high-speed broadband to rural areas. But it isn’t clear how much the state will ultimately receive and how long it will take providers to connect homes.

“You’ve just got to step up and meet this challenge,” the governor said.

Meanwhile, Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, a Democrat, is seeking federal funding to set up broadband hot spots across the country to aid remote learning during the pandemic.

“This is a short-term fix to a long-term problem, but until we treat access to broadband like the need for electricity was treated in the 1930s, our students will fall behind,” he said.

In Logan County, which is blanketed by rugged mountains, nearly a quarter of residents live below the federal poverty line, according to census data. At Logan High School, the hallways and classrooms are empty, and teachers are troubleshooting tech problems as they begin broadcasting their classes to students from laptops.

Jennifer Stillwell, a history teacher, said some poorer students won’t have transportation to get to a hot spot. She is giving students the option to use a photo of themselves rather than live video, in case they don’t feel comfortable having their home appear on screen.

She was encouraged that after three days of classes, she had been unable to reach only five students who may lack internet out of 105 on her roster.

On Thursday, her AP history class got off to a smooth start, with 16 students logging in. “Let’s see if we can chat,” she said brightly, as she introduced herself from her neat classroom.

The Logan County school district is using a $375,000 grant from the state to get students connected. Patricia Lucas, the district’s superintendent, said as many 40% of K-12 students in the county might not have internet at home...
Still more.

Sunday, September 13, 2020

Hard Times for High Times

A fascinating piece, at Politico, "How Legal Weed Destroyed a Counterculture Icon."


Fishnet Babes

 At Drunken Stepfather, "FISHNET FRIDAY OF THE DAY."


Kim Strassel, Resistance (At All Costs)

*BUMPED.*

At Amazon, Kim Strassel, Resistance (At All Costs): How Trump Haters Are Breaking America.



Byron York, Obsession

*BUMPED.*

California is Toast

At WaPo, "Warmer. Burning. Epidemic-challenged. Expensive. The California Dream has become the California Compromise":
SAN FRANCISCO — The cityscape resembles the surface of a distant planet, populated by a masked alien culture. The air, choked with blown ash, is difficult to breathe.

There is the Golden Gate Bridge, looming in the distance through a drift-smoke haze, and the Salesforce Tower, which against the blood-orange sky appears as a colossal spaceship in a doomsday film.

San Francisco, and much of California, has never been like this.

California has become a warming, burning, epidemic-challenged and expensive state, with many who live in sophisticated cities, idyllic oceanfront towns and windblown mountain communities thinking hard about the viability of a place they have called home forever. For the first time in a decade, more people left California last year for other states than arrived.

Monica Gupta Mehta and her husband, an entrepreneur, have been through tech busts and booms, earthquakes, wildfire seasons and power outages. But it was not until the skies darkened and cast an unsettling orange light on their Palo Alto home earlier this week that they ever considered moving their family of five somewhere else.

“For the first time in 20-something years, the thought crossed our minds: Do we really want to live here?” said Mehta, who is starting an education tech company.

It would be difficult to leave. They love the area’s abundant nature and are tied to Silicon Valley by work and a network of extended family members, who followed them west from Pittsburgh. But Mehta says it is something she would consider if her family is in regular danger.

“Yesterday felt so apocalyptic,” Mehta said. “People are really starting to reconsider whether California has enough to offer them.”

This is the latest iteration of the California Dream, a Gold Rush-era slogan meant to capture the hopeful migration of an old nation to a new, rich West. For generations, the tacit agreement for California residents resembled a kind of too-good-to-be-true deal. Live in the lovely if often drought-plagued Sierra, or beneath the beachfront Pacific Coast cliffs, and work in an economy constantly reinventing itself, from Hollywood to the farms of the San Joaquin to Silicon Valley.

But for many of the state’s 40 million residents, the California Dream has become the California Compromise, one increasingly challenging to justify, with a rapidly changing climate, a thumb-on-the-scales economy, high taxes and a pandemic that has led to more cases of the novel coronavirus than any other state.

During the course of his term, President Trump has singled out California, a state he lost by 30 percentage points, as an example of Democrat-caused urban unrest, irresponsible immigration policy and poor forest management, even though nearly 60 percent of the state’s forests are managed by the federal government. Several are burning today, with millions of acres already scorched.

Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) has responded specifically in some cases, but in others, he has invoked the California Dream, an aspirational noun attached to no other state. In his January 2019 inaugural address, Newsom warned that “there is nothing inevitable about” that dream.

“And now more than ever, it is up to us to defend it,” he said.

As the state’s climate has shifted to one of extremes, soaking wet seasons followed suddenly by sharp, dry heat and wind, no region has been safe from fire. This year — even before peak fire season has gotten underway — widespread fires have forced evacuations, from San Jose in Silicon Valley to the distant hamlet of Big Creek along the western slopes of the Sierra.

More than two dozen major fires are burning around the state and have consumed a record 3.1 million acres of land, more than 3,000 homes and at least 22 lives. Los Angeles has reported the worst air quality in three decades as a result of fires surrounding that city, already notorious for orange air and seasonal dry cough.

Wine Country has burned four straight years, with a number of vineyards lost. Homes have been destroyed far to the south in San Diego County, and more than 200 campers had to be airlifted to safety amid the Creek Fire, still burning hot and fast between Fresno and Mammoth Lakes...
Keep reading.

Friday, September 11, 2020

Remembering 9/11

It's been 9 years since I visited New York on September 11. See, "Faith, Freedom, and Memory: Report From Ground Zero, September 11, 2010."

At USA Today, "'America will always rise up': Trump and Biden pay respects to 9/11 victims in memorial visits."

And here's CJ Pearson, for Prager University:



Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Selena Gomez, Looking Good

At Drunken Stepfather, "SELENA GOMEZ OF THE DAY."

Perry Anderson, Lineages of the Absolutist State

*BUMPED.*

At Amazon, Perry Anderson, Lineages of the Absolutist State.



Ignore the National Polls

Joe Biden leads Donald Trump by 6 points in the current RCP presidential polling average, 49.9 to 43.8.

The real margin is probably within the margin of error. There for sure is going to be a secret Trump vote this year, and I'm betting it'll be larger than the 3 to 5 five percent of shy Trump voters in 2016.

Don't trust the polls. They've been terrible now for years, and, well, this is 2020. Democrats are even more desperate to win.

Check all the headlines at Memeorandum, "Presidential Contest Tightens as Campaigns Move Into Eight-Week Home Stretch."

And at see the Miami Herald, "Biden is struggling to win Miami Latinos, new poll finds. Will it cost him Florida?"

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Your Definitive Guide to Understanding Polling (and Why Most Polls Are Garbage)

From Stephen Green, at Instapundit, "New You Can Use."

Why White Lives Don’t Matter

At the Other McCain:
No, I’m not talking about this — not yet, maybe later today — but rather about an interesting fact you probably haven’t noticed: Nobody cares how many white suspects get shot by cops. And I mean absolutely nobody cares. Certainly no black person has ever bothered to investigate how often the police shoot white suspects, but white people don’t care, either. Like, if I got pulled over by cops tomorrow and became belligerent when they tried to arrest me, nobody would care if this resulted in me being shot to death. My own family wouldn’t really care. My friends would be like, “He probably had it coming. He was always an idiot.”

There would be no protest marches. Benjamin Crump wouldn’t be all over CNN complaining about the “excessive force” if I got shot by cops. And this is not just true me, but of any other white person.
Keep reading.

What to Expect After the November Election

Chaos, in a word, and also "coup."

Lots of theories going around about what's going to happen in the election aftermath. Unless Trump or Biden wins a landslide, expect days or week of delays, protests, and riots. See Michael Anton, at the American Mind, "The Coming Coup?" And FWIW, at the Daily Beast, "The Left Secretly Preps for MAGA Violence After Election Day."

And Tucker's on the case:



Sierra Nevada Creek Fire

At the L.A. Times, "Sierra fire’s unstoppable path of destruction devastates town, sends residents fleeing":

As the sun set in the Sierra Nevada Friday, about 50 residents of the mountain hamlet of Big Creek gathered on an overlook at the edge of town. The Creek fire, as it would be called, had just started burning in the canyon below.

It seemed minor, and those assembled looked on hopefully as planes and a helicopter dropped water on it.

“It was a Friday night, something to watch, something to do. We are a bunch of hillbillies,” joked Toby Wait, the superintendent, principal and gym teacher for the town’s 55-student school. “Fire is part of our lives, but this was small.”

It didn’t stay small.

In the hours and days that followed, the Creek fire has exploded into a monster inferno that has consumed nearly 100,000 acres, enlisted nearly 1,000 firefighters, isolated small foothill communities and threatened to burn until mid-October.

California’s fire season got an early start this year with the massive lightning fires in the coastal mountains and wine country. Even without the fall Santa Ana winds, more than 2 million acres have burned so far in 2020, more than in any previously recorded year. Now the Creek fire promises to be one of the worst of the season.

For the mountain communities lying east of Fresno, the assessment as of Monday afternoon looked especially grave.

Fueled by millions of dead trees, the Creek fire has raced through mountain communities like Big Creek and vacation getaways like Huntington and Shaver Lake, confounding firefighters with unpredictable and terrifying behavior. Its smoke plumed nearly 50,000 feet high. There were lightning strikes. Forests seemed to explode.

The drama seemed to peak Saturday night when a CH-47 Chinook and UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter rescued some 200 campers trapped by flames at Mammoth Pool.

But among the thousands fighting the fire or evacuating from its path, there have been no reports of deaths.

Damage to property and homes is more difficult to assess. The fire is burning so dangerously and intensely that crews who normally count destroyed houses and buildings have been told to stand down for their own safety...
RTWT.



Democrats Are Laying the Groundwork for Revolution Right in Front of Our Eyes

It's Michael Anton, at the American Mind, "The Coming Coup?"

Sunday, September 6, 2020

The Best of Myla

Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition has gone downhill. It's bad. At least they've still got their old videos available.

Here's Ms. Maya from 2018:



Jennifer Delacruz's Record-Breaking Forecast

Ms. Jennifer's back in the studio!

At ABC News 10 San Diego:



Saturday, September 5, 2020

Jim Gaffigan, Donald Trump, and the Death of Laughter

At WSJ, "A family-friendly comedian unleashes an obscene rant against the president—and insults his own fans":
During the final night of the Republican National Convention last week, Mr. Gaffigan delivered a profane Twitter rant against President Trump: “I dont give a f— if anyone thinks this is virtue signaling or whatever. We need to wake up. We need to call trump the con man and thief that he is.”

There was more. Along these lines. You could look it up.

The sheer partisan rancor surely shocked many of Mr. Gaffigan’s fans. Yet the foul language was the real surprise—and, to some, the disappointment. Mr. Gaffigan’s success was built in part on his family-friendly reputation. He works clean—unlike most of his peers, he doesn’t swear during his act. More, he and his wife, Jeannie, have five children. Their willingness to identify publicly as faithful Catholics makes them a rarity in the entertainment business. In 2015 he was invited to “open” for Pope Francis during the pontiff’s visit to Philadelphia. Dave Chappelle and Louis C.K. don’t get those gigs...
RTWT.

Thursday, September 3, 2020

Labor Day Weekend 'Record' Heat

If you go back and read the "climate change" debates from just a few years ago, one big issue is measuring temperatures. The NOAA, if I recall, stopped using satellite earth temperature data, for on average, those satellite readings showed less movement toward the upper temperatures, amid all the baloney about "global warming."

In 2018, our electrical power went out during a 109 degree heat wave. So far, Irvine hasn't broken 100 this summer, if I recall.

At LAT, "Ferocious heat wave could bring record temperatures to California over Labor Day weekend."



'Everylong'

From my drive-time this morning, while out running errands.

The Foo Fighters, "Everylong," at Jack FM 93.1 Los Angeles.

Rio
Duran Duran
11:50am

Give It Away
Red Hot Chili Peppers
11:45am

What's on Your Mind?
Information Society
11:41am

Lights
JOURNEY
11:38am

Only Happy When It Rains
Garbage
11:34am

Rock The Casbah
Clash
11:31am

Blasphemous Rumours
Depeche Mode
11:21am

Unforgiven
Metallica
11:15am

Don't You Want Me
Human League
11:11am

You're My Best Friend
Queen
11:08am

Radioactive
Imagine Dragons
11:05am

Panama
Van Halen
11:01am

I Can't Go For That (No Can Do)
Daryl Hall & John Oates
10:52am

Everlong (Acoustic)
Foo Fighters
10:47am

Take On Me
A-HA
10:44am

Margaritaville
Jimmy Buffett
10:39am

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Alexis is Back!

Haven't seen this little hottie in a while.

On Twitter.

Monday, August 31, 2020

John Yoo, Defender in Chief

At Amazon, John Yoo, Defender in Chief: Donald Trump's Fight for Presidential Power.



Blue Exodus: California Is a Failed State

It's Jon "Ex-Jon" Gabriel, at the Arizona Republic, "California is a failed state. How do we know? They're moving to Arizona in droves":
Driving across Arizona, it’s hard not to notice a surge in California license plates. The reason for this is becoming more apparent every day. California is a failed state.

After nearly a decade of one-party rule, the once-Golden State is tarnished, possibly beyond repair. Listing all the problems facing our neighbors across the Colorado River would require several books, so I’ll only highlight a few.

The fifth-largest economy in the world and home to many of the greatest technology companies on Earth can’t keep the lights on. The state’s three largest utilities turned off power to more than 410,000 homes and businesses on Friday, Aug. 21, then again to half as many Saturday, Aug. 22.

Gov. Gavin Newsom sprung to action on Monday by announcing more blackouts. "We failed to predict and plan these shortages,” the governor said. “And that's simply unacceptable."

But accept it he did, noting that the state’s near-religious promotion of solar and wind power left a gap in the reliability of its power grid. You don’t say.

Wildly unpredictable events, like August being hot, never occurred to Newsom last October when he signed six more bills to kill off his state’s fossil fuel industry. Shutting down one of California’s two nuclear plants certainly didn’t help. Perhaps their plan to close the second one in 2024 will have different results.

So have those to stop homelessness

Documentary filmmaker Christopher Rufo’s latest work reveals the tragic failure of the city’s homeless policies. In “Chaos by the Bay,” he shows the results of well-meaning progressive efforts, from decriminalizing homelessness to plying addicts with free drug paraphernalia, alcohol and cannabis. For the most part, rampant mental illness has been left untreated...
Still more.

Jennifer Delacruz's Returning Heatwave Forecast

The lovely Ms. Jennifer continues to use her home as a broadcast station.

For ABC News 10 San Diego:



Sunday, August 30, 2020

Francesca Cipriani

At Taxi Driver, "Francesca Cipriani Sunbathing."

Working-Class Voters' Seismic Shift Toward Republicans

It's Salena Zito, who I don't see on Twitter anymore, probably because leftists got her suspended, at the Washtington Examiner, "Ohio county tells story of the seismic shift of working-class voters toward GOP."



Trump Supporter Killed by Violent Democrats in Portland (VIDEO)

At the New York Times, via Memeorandum, "One Person Dead in Portland After Clashes Between Trump Supporters and Protesters."

And Gateway Pundit, "4Chan Users Appear to Have Identified Portland Rioter Who Shot and Killed Trump Supporter."



Bear Spray

Watching the street-fighting videos this last couple of days, I noticed that the Trump supporters always have bear spray. The canister's are high-powered projectile devices. If you're hit in the face you're probably needing medical attention, dang!


Leah Pezzetti's Cooler Weather Forecast

Ms. Leah's the new weather hottie at ABC News 10 San Diego.

I haven't seen Ms. Jennifer Delacruz lately, but she's still with the station.



Saturday, August 29, 2020

Personal Selfie: Monterey Bay 2018

From my 2018 family vacation to Monterey Bay. I'm going through old photos and wanted to post it here just to have it on file lol.


Trump Bets on Law-and-Order Message to Sway Swing Voters

Hell, I'd take that bet!

At WSJ:

President Trump and his supporters have seen an opening in the presidential race in recent weeks as a fresh wave of protests against racial injustice have at times turned volatile, with images of violent clashes playing out in the news.

Mr. Trump emphasized law and order in his speech Thursday accepting the Republican nomination, saying that if Democratic nominee Joe Biden won the White House, “No one will be safe.” Vice President Mike Pence used almost the same words in his speech a day earlier, and one of the campaign’s most-aired recent ads employs similar language.

With Mr. Trump trailing the former vice president in national polls, and by a smaller margin in many battleground states, his team is banking that the chaotic images from places such as Kenosha, Wis., and Portland, Ore., won’t just rally their base, but sway undecided voters and suburban voters who had been moving away from Mr. Trump. “The more chaos and anarchy and vandalism and violence reigns, the better it is for the very clear choice on who’s best on public safety and law and order,” Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway told Fox News this week.

Mr. Biden’s team rejects that notion, saying most of those voters support what have been largely peaceful protests against police shootings of Black people, and noting that the unrest is taking place under Mr. Trump’s watch. “This happens to be Donald Trump’s America,” Mr. Biden said on Thursday. He added: “I condemn violence in any form, whether it’s looting or whatever it is.”

Democrats spent much of their convention focusing on the coronavirus pandemic, which has claimed more than 180,000 lives in the U.S., the most of any country in the world. They think Mr. Trump’s handling of the pandemic is the issue that will define the 2020 election.

But the unrest that has emerged since the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody on May 25 has become a wild card in the last months leading up to the election. It regained national attention this past week after the police shooting Sunday of Jacob Blake, a 29-year-old Black man, in Kenosha stirred protests there. Some anti-Trump strategists have expressed concern that violence stemming from the protests is a vulnerability for Democrats.

Sarah Longwell, strategy director for Republican Voters Against Trump, which produces ads opposing the president’s re-election, said she had conducted recent focus groups with women who voted for Mr. Trump in 2016 but are reconsidering their support. “Six or seven weeks ago, as I was listening to these voters, they were very clearly upset by the way President Trump had handled the racial crisis, even more so than the pandemic,” Ms. Longwell said.

More recently, however, she said, “Everybody jumps to the violence and the looting. There was still a lot of criticism of Trump, but they were immediately focused on what was happening to businesses, violence in the streets.”

It remains unknown who is responsible for damage to businesses and other buildings in Kenosha, though authorities have suggested that outside agitators with no connection to the peaceful daytime protests were responsible for some of the violence after nightfall. A 17-year-old resident of Antioch, Ill., was arrested and charged in connection with the shooting of protesters near midnight Tuesday that left two people dead and one injured.

In July, a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll found that voters in growing numbers believed that Black and Hispanic Americans are discriminated against and that support was rising for the Black Lives Matter movement.

Polls vary on where voters rank crime as an issue. A Journal/NBC News survey this month found crime to be well behind the economy, coronavirus and other matters as a top concern for voters. A recent Pew Research Center survey that asked likely voters about issues of importance in the election found that “violent crime” ranked fifth overall, narrowly behind coronavirus and well behind the economy and health care. But for Republicans, it was the second-most important issue after the economy...
That Biden "peaceful protests" line is so much bull.

Jonathan A. Rodden, Why Cities Lose

Jonathan A. Rodden, Why Cities Lose: The Deep Roots of the Urban-Rural Political Divide.



Taking Attendance Online

My classes start Monday, American, comparative, and international politics.

It's going to be lit, lol.

At LAT, "LAUSD’s liberal student attendance policy raises eyebrows."

They don't really take attendance, you know. They're just warehousing students smdh. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯:
In a policy that has raised flags among some teachers and principals, but appears to be permitted by state law, students in the nation’s second-largest school district have several relatively easy ways to be counted as present for a day of school:
* If a student does nothing more than send an email, text or talk to a teacher on the phone at any point in the day, the student will be counted as present. This communication does not have to be with the student — it can also take place between a parent or guardian and the teacher.
* If a student appears in a live session with a teacher or classmates on Zoom, however briefly, the student is counted as present for the day.
* If students skip these live sessions, but turn in work, they are also credited for attendance.
* If a student simply logs in to an online school account but does nothing further, it’s likely that the student also will be counted as present.
* “I have a problem with that,” said a teacher in reference to the log-in policy during a training session that The Times witnessed via Zoom.
Making sure that students attend class and keeping a record of that attendance are important and required tasks, state officials say.

“Ensuring that we are reaching and engaging every student is more critical than ever to ensure students already at greater risk of falling behind can stay connected to their learning,” said Daniel Thigpen, director of communications for the California Department of Education.

The key component of being marked as present is that daily engagement — in whatever form — must take place during the same school day before midnight. If at 12:01 a.m. a student has been silent in all ways, the student will be definitively absent.

The new practices, although not demanding of students, represent a return to formal attendance-taking. When schools closed in mid-March during the onset of the coronavirus emergency, state officials did away with requiring teachers to take attendance.

But both anecdotal reports and episodic tracking indicated that student engagement sagged — and also that some teachers provided limited learning opportunities.

Los Angeles Unified reported that 78% of middle school students logged in three times or more per week several weeks after schools closed. And an internal report showed disparities in engagement along lines of race, ethnicity and family income — with students from low-income families and Black and Latino students participating in fewer learning activities than peers from higher-income families and white and Asian students.

With most California campuses closed for the start of the new school year, the state established rules that mandate daily live lessons, restored requirements for minimum instructional minutes and reinstated taking roll.

One principal complained in an interview with The Times that a superior told her that if a student logged in for one minute, that student was present for the day.

“Would that be fraud?” the principal wanted to know.

Another principal advised her teachers that she wanted them to consider the content of an email contact before accepting it for attendance. She expected the student or parent to explain why the student could not attend class — and the explanation or the excuses should not be considered evergreen. Teachers can’t allow students to be marked as present simply because they send an email every day claiming that they were unable to log in, she said.

The names of principals interviewed have been withheld because they were concerned about talking freely without permission from the school district. The principals do not have tenure protection in their assignments and they said they feared retaliation.

District officials were unwilling to discuss the topic — even though the L.A. County Office of Education, an oversight agency, could not identify any improper practices based on an explanation of the policies provided by The Times.

Given a week to confirm information about attendance-taking practices, which The Times gleaned from interviews and documents, the district refused to make anyone available to explain the content of the teacher trainings or the attendance policy and would not review information submitted for verification.

Instead, the school system supplied a brief statement. “Los Angeles Unified’s attendance practices are in compliance with SB98 and CDE guidelines” — referring to Senate Bill 98, which established teaching guidelines for the fall, and the state Department of Education.

The district reported that first-day-of-school attendance rates last week were 86% this year compared with 90% last year. Officials refused to provide attendance numbers for any additional days...

Ben Buchanan, The Hacker and the State

At Amazon, Ben Buchanan, The Hacker and the State: Cyber Attacks and the New Normal of Geopolitics.



Helen Pluckrose and James Lindsay, Cynical Theories

At Amazon, Helen Pluckrose and James Lindsay, Cynical Theories: How Activist Scholarship Made Everything about Race, Gender, and Identity―and Why This Harms Everybody.



Make America Civil Again

It's Karlyn Borysenko, for Prager University.

She's on Twitter as well.



Milana Vayntrub Speaks Out

I guess she was slut-shamed for exposing her massive honkers in a super low-cut cocktail dress (cleavage!) a few years back.

Trolls online are hurting her feelings. Photos at the link:


Craig L. Symonds, World War II at Sea

At Amazon, Craig L. Symonds, World War II at Sea: A Global History.



Monday, August 24, 2020

Panic! at the Disco

Their rendition of "Bohemian Rhapsody" is like wow.

Just phenomenal --- I'm impressed.

Their Wiki page is here.



Saturday, August 22, 2020

Golden State Killer Sentenced to 26 Life Terms

At LAT, "Golden State Killer given life in prison for rapes, murders that terrorized a generation":

The crimes began as window peeping in DeAngelo’s hometown of Rancho Cordova. They progressed to bedroom burglaries and panty thefts in Visalia, and then the murder of Claude Snelling, a college instructor who caught the intruder attempting to abduct his 16-year-old daughter from her bedroom in 1975.

The rapes that ensued became more violent as DeAngelo began to attack couples together and, later, to kill them.

While DeAngelo typically dragged women out of bed and away from their husbands to rape them in other rooms, crime scene evidence shows the couples he murdered died in bed beside each other.

“It wasn’t enough for him to rape or beat or shoot his victims,” said Santa Barbara County Dist. Atty. Joyce Dudley. “He wanted to take inflicting human pain to the highest level possible. Therefore, he often ensured that their loved ones saw or heard their loved ones being killed. That’s who Joe DeAngelo is.”

The investigations were often botched by law enforcement agencies refusing to cooperate, but the crimes also instigated major advances in criminal justice laws and tools. They were cited by women’s rights advocates to successfully increase the penalties for rape. A political crusade launched and funded by the family of murder victim Keith Harrington fueled a California law requiring felons to add their DNA to a databank used to hunt criminals.

Harrington’s older brother, Ron, used his victim statement in court this week to make the case for overriding privacy concerns and preserving police access to consumer genealogy sites, like the one detectives used to identify DeAngelo.

As part of a plea deal with prosecutors, DeAngelo admitted to carrying out 53 attacks on 87 victims in 11 counties, starting in 1975 and ending with the rape and murder of a teenage girl in Orange County in 1986. Authorities believe he is also responsible for two more sexual assaults and a shooting for which he was not charged.

In exchange for his plea, prosecutors agreed to spare him the death penalty. He was sentenced to 11 life terms without the possibility of parole, to be served consecutively, plus 15 life terms and eight years...
More.

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Cooling Off

It's a freakin' heat wave, but it's also only summer (for all of those climate alarmists out there).

Time to cool off:

And don't forget the sunscreen for these huge tatas.

Holy Smokes!

What a lady, on Twitter:


Napping With Angie

In your dreams:


Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in Blonde

Amazing, whatever this is.

On Twitter:



Antony Dapiran, City on Fire

At Amazon, Antony Dapiran, City on Fire: The Fight for Hong Kong.



Padres' Fernando Tatis Hits Grand Slam on 3-0 Count, Breaks 'Unwritten Rule' in Baseball (VIDEO)

I've never heard of this rule. Major League Baseball must've kept it a secret --- even Tatis said he'd never heard of it.

Great story.

At ESPN, "Rangers' Ian Gibaut, Chris Woodward suspended for actions following Fernando Tatis Jr.'s grand slam":
Texas Rangers pitcher Ian Gibaut, who threw a pitch at Manny Machado after Fernando Tatis Jr.'s grand slam in Monday night's game, has been suspended for three games.

Rangers manager Chris Woodward also received a one-game suspension "as a result of Gibaut's actions," MLB said in a statement Tuesday.

Woodward served his suspension Tuesday when the Rangers faced the Padres. Gibaut has elected to appeal and was active for the game. They were both fined an undisclosed amount.

Padres' Tatis angers Rangers with late grand slam...

Fernando Tatis Jr. and Juan Soto are breaking baseball's unwritten rules. Isn't it great?
Tatis missed a take sign and swung on a 3-0 pitch with the bases loaded and the Padres sporting a seven-run lead in the eighth inning. Woodward immediately displayed his displeasure with what he perceived as a violation of an unwritten rule of baseball. After the game, the skipper said the pitch got away from Gibaut.

"I'm not pounding my fist on the table saying this was absolutely horrendous," Woodward said of Tatis' swing before the suspension was announced. "I just thought it went just past the line."

Padres manager Jayce Tingler said after the game that Tatis missed the take sign from third-base coach Glenn Hoffman. Tatis said after the game he wasn't aware of such a practice and promised to learn from the experience...

Sleepwalking into Secession

At the American Mind: