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Nick Sandmann Lawsuit against WAPO for $250 Million and Clarence Thomas’ Solo Opinion

 

Two stories have intersected making for intriguing discussions about the First Amendment as well as the laws against defamation.

The first story is the defamation lawsuit of Nick Sandmann against the Washington Post for $250 million. WaPo’s coverage of the confrontation between Sandman and a Native American man exploded into a national story and was fed by the inflammatory and reckless coverage by WaPo and other media outlets. Sandmann’s lawyer, Lin Wood, said, “Nick Sandmann was perceived as an easy target. He is 16. Inexcusable on every level.”

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Kudos to Lara Logan

 

Lara Logan’s outspoken comments in recent days regarding the biased media and the death of journalism came and went quicker than a lightning bolt. Yet this flash of light lingered long enough to spark a fire. Her comments were read across conservative radio, highlighted in the Washington Examiner, and talked about on Fox News. When I heard that she spoke out, claiming to commit journalistic suicide, my ears perked up. She called the left-wing media propagandists.

“Former CBS News foreign correspondent Lara Logan said, “responsibility for fake news” begins with journalists as she berated the “liberal” media in a recent interview. “The media everywhere is mostly liberal,” Logan said during a podcast with retired Navy SEAL Mike Ritland on Friday. Logan, who said the interview was “professional suicide for me,” also blamed the media for not pursuing objectivity anymore, arguing journalists have evolved into “political activists.

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But How Will You Pay For It?

 

This post stems out of a conversation at the work lunch table. Someone brought up that Brooklyn Bug-Eye’s economic illiteracy. “We’ve chased Amazon away! That’s three billion in tax incentives that we can spend elsewhere!” Not quite how that works. The discussion moved on to banning cow farts and air travel and so forth. I’ll spare you the details, you’ve heard ’em all before. The problem is that by the time you get to how you’re going to pay for such a thing you’ve already lost the argument.

Here, let’s have Rachael Carson tell it.

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Unwarranted: Elizabeth Warren’s Flawed Idea

 

Elizabeth Warren, one of the – what is it now, 211 candidates for president? – seems intent on proving that having been a Harvard law professor is no bar to fatuous policy prescriptions. She has endorsed the farrago of foolishness called the Green New Deal, promises to tax the rich “make the economy work for us,” and recently proposed a shiny new policy idea fresh from 1971 – government-funded, universal pre-school.

Decade after decade, this old chestnut is trotted out as a pro-family, pro-middle class reform, and every time, assumptions about government’s competence to perform this task are blithely assumed.

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Will Smollett Claim TDS As A Defense?

 

As of this morning, actor Jussie Smollett is under arrest for filing a fake police report in connection to the “attack” that took place last month. According to the two men who perpetrated it, he paid each $4,000 in order to carry it out.

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Louder with Crowder Goes Under Cover to Expose Late Term Abortion

 

Steven Crowder’s show went to a clinic in Denver, Colorado to expose how easy it is to obtain a late-term abortion and the lie that only women in “duress” get late-term abortions (such as, a risk to the mother’s life or fetal abnormalities). Well, we all know that is a lie, and this video exposes that.

It’s not a graphic video, but I will pray that Patient X changed her mind and decided not to get the abortion. I will ask that you do the same.

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Bernie Sanders Is Not Running for President of the United States . . .

 

. . . He is campaigning to overthrow the existing U.S. Constitutional government and replace it with a new government. That new government will be based on principles completely different from the principles of the existing US government.

I happened to hear a portion of Mr. Sanders’ announcement video and was horrified by the level of revolution I heard in the short clip. I looked further to be sure the segment hadn’t been taken out of context. I don’t think it was. I hesitated to post this (I’m really not a crazy conspiracy theorist), but so many ideas that are antithetical to the founding principles of the United States republic are now considered acceptable or even desirable that I thought Bernie Sanders’ announcement was a place to plant a stake.

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Jeffrey Hart, R.I.P.

 

Thursday morning in Hanover, New Hampshire, the finest teacher I have ever known will be laid to rest.

Jeffrey Hart, who died Sunday at 88, taught at Dartmouth for thirty years. By 1975, when I matriculated at the College, he had become a campus celebrity, one of the professors every student learned about as a freshman. In a town in which the faculty all seemed to own Volvos, Jeff would drive to work in a limousine, a gift from his friend, William F. Buckley, Jr., pulling up each morning to Sanborn House, the home of the English Department, where he would occupy not one parking space but two. At football games, Jeff would appear in a raccoon coat. If you saw him on campus—Jeff loved to stroll down to the athletic fields to watch the tennis team practice—he would invariably be smoking an elaborate pipe. He owned a churchwarden a foot-and-a-half long and meerschaum that looked as though it had belonged to Sherlock Holmes.

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Quote of the Day: Gen. Grant at Ft. Donelson

 

This quote is taken from Ron Chernow’s excellent biography. Gen. Grant’s men took Ft. Henry easily in February 1862. The fort was poorly constructed and was nearly inundated by rising river waters. He then marched to Ft. Donelson. Its loss cost the South 12,000 surrendered men and opened the Cumberland River to Union penetration. The top two Confederate commanders (Floyd and Pillow) fled leaving Gen Buckner to surrender. Buckner had helped Grant when he was down on his luck in the 1850s. However, Grant demanded unconditional surrender which Buckner reluctantly accepted.

After their greetings, Grant asked [Buckner] why Pillow had fled. “Well, he thought you would rather have hold of him than of any other man in the Southern Confederacy.” “Oh no,” Grant smirked. “If I had got him I’d have let him go again; he will do us more good commanding you fellows.” Grant and Buckner, both veterans who remembered Pillow from Mexico, shared a good laugh at this caustic remark.

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Timbs v. Indiana: A First, Tentative Step Towards the Elimination of Civil Asset Forfeiture?

 

SCOTUS today announced its decision in Timbs v. Indiana. It is good, but not great news. All nine justices agreed that the prohibition on excessive fines found in the Eighth Amendment applied to state civil forfeiture actions. The unanimity is particularly nice to see and the result is a step in the right direction. Gorsuch and Thomas wrote separately to make the true — but at this time, pedantic — point that the privileges and immunities clause of the 14th Amendment rather than the oxymoronic “substantive due process” doctrine should be the vehicle for incorporation.

The case stopped short, however, of banning civil asset forfeitures. It remanded for further proceedings — presumably on the question of the excessiveness of the forfeiture involved in the case.

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Speaking of Overreach in the Executive Branch …

 

There are several conversations going on about the declaration of a national emergency by President Trump last week. Many folks are in high dudgeon about this executive “overreach.” Many Congressfolk, who heretofore have talked about and around, and ultimately did nothing about the border crisis for decades, are outraged that a President would act. ‘I mean, yeah sure it is a crisis or an emergency, but it is up to the legislature to solve, not the President. Haaaruuumppfff!’ Quite embarrassing for them, in light of the fact they have done squat about it legislatively for over 18 years now.

But, I digress. Let’s examine another executive branch action that has clearly overreached. And likely illegally.

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Some Random Musings on the Smollett Case

 

Attending a Catholic elementary school and being taught by nuns provided two educations. One was the classical three R’s — actually four R’s if you include religion. The other education was in behavior. One day, a boy in third grade decided he would throw a tantrum. A real tantrum, throwing himself on the floor next to his desk, and screaming. Sister Mary (not her real name) left the room and came back with two more nuns and a pail of water. The water was poured onto the boy and he was marched off to the office. His mother received a phone call informing her that she needed to bring another uniform to school for her son.

I learned two lessons that day. The first was to take throwing a tantrum before the end of the school year off my to-do list. The second was that I would not be rewarded for throwing a tantrum by being sent home before the end of the school day.

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Of Kings, Presidents, and the Abdication of Congressional Power

 

I’ve been a member of Ricochet for several years but never had sufficient reason to believe my political opinions were worth sharing here. Alas, I’m still not convinced of the value of my own views, but I am sure that my teenaged son has thought out many of his own quite well. Here’s an essay he wrote a few months ago (when he was still 16) that he has authorized me to share with you all. Enjoy!


C.S. Lewis once wrote, “Where men are forbidden to honour a king they honour millionaires, athletes, or film-stars instead.” This was originally meant as a British criticism of American society, but the modern political climate has proven him wrong: we have given ourselves a king to honor, namely in the form of whoever holds the office of President of the United States.

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How Do You Make That Hose?

 

http://hbd-ther.knowledge4you.ca/wp-content/uploads/industrial-hose_product-image.pngYou likely use things made with the help of my maternal grandfather’s patent every day. From cars to jet airliners, from garden hoses to welding torches, reinforced hose is used. You need an inner layer that stands up to whatever flows through the hose, you need a reinforcing layer to keep the hose from bulging and bursting under pressure, and you need an outer coating to protect the hose from the external environment. So, how do you make that? Therein lies a tale.

F. Merrill Galloway was my maternal grandfather. Born in 1908, he went home at 95. He worked his entire adult life until the Transient Ischemic Attacks (TIA) or mini-strokes ended his ability to work in his late 80s. He worked with both his hands and his mind, from his garden, to clocks, to rebuilding a violin from broken pieces in a cigar box. Then there was the work that paid the bills and in which he took enormous pride.

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ISIS Mother Pleads to Return—to Alabama

 

We knew this would happen. All the men and women who were excited about fighting for ISIS wanted to be involved with the ISIS cause and they went to fight in Syria. And now one of them wants to come home with her child.

Hoda Muthana went to Syria in 2014; she was one of 1,500 foreign women and the only American staying in a Kurdish-run refugee camp. She was married three times and widowed twice. And now she has an 18-month old son. She is asking to return to the United States.

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Responding to Conservative Critics of Trump using the National Emergency Law on 1976

 

I saw this article two days ago and I think it is spot on. I have some quotes, but please, read the whole thing. (All quotes from this article except the table on how Reagan, too, shredded the Constitution by using the 1976 law)

Now come all the great Washington “conservatives” lambasting President Trump for threatening to declare a “national emergency” so he can finally build the promised southern border wall that got him elected president.

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How Will the Left React to This Latest from Trump?

 
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The Most Disturbing Part of the Jussie Smollett Story

 

Today President Trump’s son, Donald Jr., tweeted something I was planning on writing on tonight:

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The Farcical “Green New Deal”

 

The dominant source of energy for the foreseeable future for both the United States and the world will be fossil fuels, chiefly in the form of oil, natural gas, and coal. Throughout the world, many groups will push hard for massive subsidies to wind and solar energy. Yet, that attempt, no matter how bold, will fail to shift the overall balance of energy production toward green sources. The fatal drawback of wind and solar is their lack of storability. Solar works when the sun shines. Wind works when breezes blow. Both often provide energy when it is not needed and fail to provide it when required. Any legal diktat that puts these renewable sources first will only produce a prolonged economic dislocation. Pie-in-the-sky proposals like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal, which stipulates 100 percent of energy needs be supplied by “clean, renewable, and zero emissions” sources, should be dead on arrival.

The major challenge of sound energy policy today is to find ways to make the production of fossil fuels both cheaper and safer. Fortunately, private-sector innovation has paid off handsomely such that the total social cost of fossil fuels has trended sharply downward and shows every indication of continuing to do so. The point is especially true with fracking, which has been driven by large cumulative improvements at every stage of the production process. Since 1950, carbon dioxide emissions have increased over fivefold, but, as policy analyst Marlo Lewis has demonstrated, it is difficult to link these emissions to any negative global consequences. After all, over the same period of time, there have been massive increases in life expectancy, crop yields, and wealth. In my view, the current scientific record offers no support for the claim that increases in CO2 emissions pose an immediate, let alone existential, threat. Indeed, global temperatures have declined 0.56 degrees Celsius between 2016 and 2018 for the largest two-year drop in the past century—a trend that has gone largely unremarked upon in the press.

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Firearms Background Checks

 

I decided to a little more research into the failure of finding a felony conviction for the Aurora, IL shooter. When his employment was terminated, he shot 10 people. Five employees were killed, and five police officers were wounded.

In spite of his felony conviction in the mid-1990s for aggravated assault in Mississippi, he managed to obtain a Firearms Owners Identification (FOID) card in January 2014. He submitted his name and birthdate, but he checked the box stating he had not been convicted of a felony.

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ACF Critic Series #20: Interviewing Titus

 

Here’s a strange new podcast–our own @FlaggTaylor interviewed me for a change. He got me to spill the beans about the American Cinema Foundation, its past and its projects now that I run it. Also, how I learned about American cinema in post-Communist Eastern Europe, how I became a film critic, how I became a writer for American audiences, and assorted other matters about our podcasts, college lecturing, and educational ideas. Listen and share, friends!

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Uncommon Knowledge: Reagan And John Paul II — The Partnership That Changed The World

 

Did President Reagan and Pope John Paul II have a secret alliance or simply an aligned foreign policy strategy that helped end the Cold War? Former attorney general to President Reagan Edwin Meese III answers these questions and more in this episode of Uncommon Knowledge.

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