From October, 2014

Bigotry + Delusion = The American Studies Association

Behold: When the American Studies Association adopted its Israel boycott in February, it was “credited… for giving moment to the boycott campaign.” Now the ASA has significantly reversed its boycott of Israeli scholars – and is indeed trying to claim it never happened. If the ASA’s original action was important for popularizing such boycotts (at least in the narrow quarters of area studies), its reversal is equally important for showing them to be beyond the pale. It will be extremely hard for other academic groups to now put a good face on adopting a boycott that the ASA has done so much…

Those Nasty Koch Brothers

Look what they’re up to now: Liberals and conservatives don’t often see eye to eye on matters of constitutional rights, particularly when it comes to the First and Second Amendments. The Sixth Amendment, and its guarantee of defense counsel, may be at least one patch of common ground. The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers announced this week that it’s getting a “major grant” from Koch Industries Inc. to support the group’s indigent defense training programs and to study how states can do a better job of delivering legal services to the poor. “We are supportive of the NACDL’s efforts to make the…

Speaking of “Derpy” . . .

Look, I am no fan of Ron Paul’s, and I don’t take his views on monetary policy seriously. But this Paul Krugman hit piece is silly on multiple levels. You can’t criticize the content of a televised presentation when the sound is off, leaving you unable to discuss anything that was said in the presentation. If you are Paul Krugman, you are thoroughly unqualified to denounce others for being “pulled in by affinity fraud” and “liv[ing] in a bubble.” And of course, if Krugman insists on denouncing others for “liv[ing] in a bubble,” he might wish to take his own side to…

For Everyone Who Doubts the Threat Hamas Poses to Israel . . .

Be sure to read this article about the tunnels dug by Hamas to allow terrorists to launch surprise attacks on Israelis and kill or kidnap scores of them. The following excerpt provides a good summary of the story, but do read the whole thing: While Israel, a nuclear power, takes pride in having fielded one of the world’s most technologically advanced armies, its adversaries have charted a decidedly different course. For half a century, the Palestinian resistance has proved to be something of an incubator for the tools of unconventional warfare: hijacking, hostage-taking, suicide bombings—all highly visible terror tactics designed to…

In which Socialists Learn a Lesson about Economics

The Freedom Socialist Party (yeah, I’ve never heard of them either) is advocating a $20 per hour minimum wage. But when it comes to trying to get a part-time web designer, the party is only willing to pay $13 per hour. Asked about the discrepancy between the party’s words and deeds, “Doug Barnes, the party’s national secretary, told The Huffington Post on Saturday that the group relies heavily on donations from low-wage workers and could not afford to pay much to an inexperienced designer.” And of course, that is entirely understandable. Why, if the minimum wage were actually raised to…

Why Are We Aiding ISIL?

And make no mistake; we are. I understand and appreciate the desire to lend humanitarian aid to innocent civilians, but we have no evidence whatsoever that civilians are actually receiving the aid; rather, it appears that the aid is being diverted to meet ISIL’s needs and interests. Behold: “The convoys have to be approved by ISIS and you have to pay them: the bribes are disguised and itemized as transportation costs,” says an aid coordinator who spoke to The Daily Beast on the condition he not be identified in this article. The kickbacks are either paid by foreign or local non-governmental…

More Obamacare Failures

Behold: Patricia Wanderlich got insurance through the Affordable Care Act this year, and with good reason: She suffered a brain hemorrhage in 2011, spending weeks in a hospital intensive care unit, and has a second, smaller aneurysm that needs monitoring. But her new plan has a $6,000 annual deductible, meaning that Ms. Wanderlich, who works part time at a landscaping company outside Chicago, has to pay for most of her medical services up to that amount. She is skipping this year’s brain scan and hoping for the best. “To spend thousands of dollars just making sure it hasn’t grown?” said…

So, Ron Klain Will Be the Ebola Czar . . .

And I have something of a problem with it, given the penchant of government in general, and this administration in particular to name czars to handle crises. After all, I would think that given the current bureaucracy in place, and the fact that we already have a national security adviser, secretaries of Homeland Security and Health and Human Services, and a director of the Centers for Disease Control at their desks and working, we really don’t need an additional czar to take care of things. And yes, Ronald Klain was involved in making Solyndra a household word, and that doesn’t…

Quote of the Day

To those human beings who are of any concern to me I wish suffering, desolation, sickness, ill-treatment, indignities — I wish that they should not remain unfamiliar with profound self-contempt, the torture of self-mistrust, the wretchedness of the vanquished: I have no pity for them, because I wish them the only thing that can prove today whether one is worth anything or not — that one endures. —Friedrich Nietzsche. Maria Popova’s piece is well worth reading in full.