Gun control, in particular, seems to be a billionaire's obsession rather than an actual grass roots cause. It's always been a little slim on genuine volunteers, but lately it's been on life support paid for by Bloomberg.
Pausebuster paper failed to follow data and rigor standards
In science-speak, "the results could not be replicated" is about one step short of an accusation of fraud. In this case fraud looks likely, with billions of dollars in government research funding at state, but it's hard to prove fraud because fraud relies on intent.
Still, at least one person involved in the paper was apparently pushing heavily for anything that would bias the results towards global warming.
They didn't bother to archive the data they used to produce their results, either, meaning the whole paper is completely impossible to replicate.
What we found out in Climategate is that the whole of the climate science operation is like this. Some more, some less, but buggy software, lost data, biased processes used to secure grant funding... the whole thing is corrupt, fraudulent, and politicized.
No one believes the "science" because it's not science.
Patterico rounds 'em up: Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch did not found a "Fascism Forever" club in high school, Trump did not rename black history month, Trump did not reduce sanctions on Russia, but NBC did criticize Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch for writing an op-ed that he didn't write.
Nearly half of Americans believe Trump is moving too fast, which means more than half either want him to move faster, think he's moving at the right pace, or just don't care. For bonus points, do the math from the article: 45% believe Trump should either move faster or is doing just fine. The remaining 7% "have no opinion", and the margin of error is not reporting. An honest headline could state, at best, a tie.
Pining for the old days when highway robbery was young...
They used to say "Your money or your life", and if you gave them your money, you could keep your life. Now they want your money, your property, and your life. The people responsible for this violent and eliminationist rhetoric should stop and give a good long think to what happens when the targets of their rhetoric decide to respond.
Trump files early for 2020 run, potentially disrupting 501(c)3 opposition
Crazy like a fox, if it works. I went into the 2016 general election with a bad case of the jitters over what Trump would actually do if he won. So far, my expectations have not just been exceeded, they have been blown away.
This is significant because it indicates Trump is actually achieving diplomatic success. Heads of state in the middle east are willing to go along with his initiatives. That's going to be a shock to people in the US who think he's nuts. Not everyone agrees with them.
It's also significant because it may actually solve the problem without putting Europe and the US at significant danger, and be better for the refugees as well. Setting up safe zones in the middle east will keep refugees closer to cultures, religions, and languages they are used to, and hopefully where their skills are capable of earning a living. Bringing the refugees to the US dumps them into a hostile environment on basically every front, and often forces the refugees onto permanent welfare for lack of ability to complete in the job market.
Any time you see anyone talking about a "Muslim immigrant ban", you know the person saying that hasn't done their homework. There is no "Muslim immigrant ban". There is a temporary halt to entry into the United States for people who come from a list of countries with a substantial terrorist problem. As implemented the list has nothing to do with religion, and so any attempt to label it a ban on "Muslims" is lying to you.
"Mothers Against Drunk Driving", as an advocacy group on this issue, is a terrible place to go for unbiased statistics on the problem. But there is an undeniable drunk driving problem -- it's one of those persistent problems that resists being solved because the only way to solve it is responsible behavior or absurd bans, and drunks are not really qualified to engage in responsible behavior.
Illinois gun owners and sportsmen will be facing many more taxes is new legislation passes. That state is far from friendly to gun owners already (remember, it contains Chicago!) so letting the state tax the right to keep and bear arms seems dangerous. The proposed taxes actually go further, taxing associations (membership fees in firearms-related organizations). Those organizations are a political headache for Illinois politicians who want gun control.
Sure, I've commented before the Koskinen is the public face rather than the person responsible for either the targeting or the coverup. But the person actually responsible (likely Wilkins, in addition to Lois Lerner and her crew) has already left the IRS. The only person who remains to serve as an example is Koskinen.
Trump advisor Bannon says Islam is not a religion of peace
I think he's right. The word that people mistakenly translate as "peace" actually means "submission", as in, submission to Allah. I decline to submit to any god. Now what are the nattering ninnies at CNN going to do about it?
Money may not be as important to winning races as it was thought to be, but it's still important to keeping politicians' lifestyles in the manner to which they have become accustomed. Thus it will likely continue to influence how politicians vote.
I can see how that would be disqualifying in a candidate for DNC chairperson.
But this particular choice of victim group priorities will have interesting consequences for the Democrats. Trump has announced he will keep employment protections for LGBTQ individuals that Obama established by executive order. I can't really say I wholeheartedly agree with that, but I'm not really horribly hostile to the idea. I don't think anyone deserves more rights than other people, which is pretty fundamentally what that sort of victim class is about. But clearly Trump is making a play to take the LGBTQ interest group away from the Democrats, and if the Democrats keep up the Muslim fixation he just might succeed. And the order is arguably legal as it applies to federal employees and contractors, not the whole of the economy.
Of the three final candidates, Gorsuch seemed to be the least risky. Pryor has a reputation as a right-wing culture warrior, which would probably reassure the right on his reliability but drive the left into paroxysms of insanity opposing him. Hardiman had perhaps the opposite problem. Trump's sister was supposedly pushing him and comments about his record seemed thin, though he did have a couple rulings on the gun issue that seemed strong. Hardiman seemed to be the most likely of the three to grow in office. Gorsuch, on the other hand, seems to be the most "in the model of Scalia" option, putting the emphasis on textualism. The NRA likes him.
At this point events are moving too fast for a small part-time blogger with a day job to keep up with. I'll tentatively support Gorsuch until I see reason not to. And if, as seems likely, it takes the nuclear option to confirm him, I'll support that too. Dems shouldn't have played filibuster games to stack the courts in their favor, and they've already announced they'll block whoever Trump picks, presumably trying to hold the seat open until 2020. Now they're going to get their obnoxious behavior back in spades, I hope.
Even if you are skeptical about Trump's immigration order, it's the job of the AG to defend the actions of the president as they can best be defended. If the AG is unwilling to do so, we need a new AG.
There are some acts which an attorney general should refuse to defend. Trump's temporary ban on entry to people from certain countries at high risk of terrorism is not one of them.
White House petitition to repeal the Hughes Amendment
That's the amendment that bans any new manufacture of fully-automatic firearms. Note that it doesn't repeal any of the regulations concerning who can own them or buy them. It just allows people who meet all of those requirements already to buy newly-manufactured firearms instead of a shrinking pool of older "pre-1986" firearms.
If you're worried that we'll suddenly be flooded by huge numbers of newly manufactured machine guns, remember that the police and military have not had any restrictions placed on their ability to own these firearms in the 30 years that restriction has been in place for civilians. We're not going to be suddenly tooling up new factories here.
Sign the petition here. With a friendly White House and both houses of Congress, this is likely the best chance we'll get for a legislative fix to this problem.