*****
RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST
The Freedom Movement’s Daily Newspaper

Volume XVI, Issue #3,913
Monday, February 19th, 2018
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In the News:

1) US Commerce Department tells Trump to soak American steel/aluminum consumers because “national security”
2) CA: 212 abducted in Los Angeles as ICE thugs run amok
3) Biden, in public and private, tiptoes toward a 2020 run
4) Trump: Russians “laughing their asses off” over Russiagate shitshow
5) Mexico: Leftist, ruling parties declare presidential picks
6) Kelly overhauls White House clearance procedure
7) NC: Mom jailed after baptizing daughter
8) Moon won’t discuss possible summit with North Korea’s Kim
9) Report: Mysterious interstellar object is spinning out of control
10) Facebook plans to use US mail to verify IDs of election ad buyers
11) Red Stripe buys Jamaican bobsled team new sled after coach quits
12) NJ: Pregnant woman hurt when man rams stolen bakery truck into Planned Parenthood
13) Pope renews Vatican’s anti-sexual abuse panel
14) Argentina: Father pretends to be 11-year-old daughter to find and attack sexual harasser
15) In a world first, Switzerland deems it illegal to boil a lobster
16) TX: Congressional candidate for Houston endures backlash for untimely gun ad
17) FL: School massacre suspect was on authorities’ radar in 2016
18) Molson Coors considers marijuana legalization a “risk factor”
19) Iceland: Proposal to ban genital mutilation triggers protests against “attack on Judaism”
20) Atari just announced its own cryptocurrency — and its stock already spiked over 60%
21) SEC kills Chinese-linked takeover of Chicago Stock Exchange
22) VA chief of staff resigns amid secretary’s travel scandal
23) Frivolous lawsuit, frivolous settlement: Google removes “View Image” button from search results
24) UT: Romney makes US Senate run official
25) Former Playmate alleges Trump system for covering up affairs

Everybody Has An Opinion:

26) Why we must “politicize” guns
27) George W. Bush doesn’t deserve the media’s efforts at rehabilitation
28) Syria could be Washington’s next big foreign policy failure
29) “Peace through strength” is a racket
30) Want to see gun control enacted? Support a movement to arm all black Americans
31) The Trump-Russia collusion narrative is dead
32) The Satoshi Revolution, chapter 6, part 1
33) The Russiagate intelligence wars: What we do and don’t know
34) Give protectionists the boot
35) Five ways the Olympics are undermining democracy and exploiting workers
36) The NRA myth
37) Democracy and its discontents
38) Intellectual property and liberty
39) Peter Thiel’s lonely culture war
40) Massacres, here and abroad
41) Why a war on guns wouldn’t work
42) Please don’t experiment with monetary policy
43) How democracy’s spread dashed dreams of liberalism
44) Stop playing politics with school shootings
45) For the Dreamers: No deportation, no citizenship
46) Repeal gun-free zones
47) Saving children
48) Killer inlaudibilis
49) Expanding the military budget is wasteful and unnecessary
50) Trump’s big infrastructure con
51) As Mueller moves forward, lingering questions about Comey and Clinton
52) Taxing innovators to pay for universal welfare is a terrible idea
53) The war on dissent: The specter of divisiveness
54) No, there haven’t been 18 school shootings this year
55) When former spies turn into TV “experts”
56) Good riddance, Janet, you were a colossal failure, part 1
57) Overdue
58) Quantum Vibe, 02/16/18
59) Why school choice will continue to grow in popularity
60) Limited government and a free society, part 2

The Sound and the Fury:

61) Anarcho Agenda, episode 57
62) Free Talk Live, 02/17/18
63) The Tom Woods Show, episode 1096
64) FIREside Chats, episode 9
65) Reason Podcast, 02/16/18
66) Editor’s Break, episode 61
67) spiked podcast, 02/16/18
68) Free Thoughts Podcast, episode 227
69) Foreign Policy Focus, episode 156
70) Felony Friday, episode 111

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***** In the News *****

1) US Commerce Department tells Trump to soak American steel/aluminum consumers because “national security”
Source: CNBC

“The Commerce Department on Friday recommended imposing heavy tariffs or quotas on foreign producers of steel and aluminum in the interest of national security, following a trade investigation of imports. President Donald Trump and his administration announced the so-called Section 232 investigation into steel and aluminum imports in April. The investigation sought to determine whether the imports posed a threat to the country’s national security. On Friday, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross reported that steel is in fact important to U.S. national security, and current import flows are adversely impacting the steel industry.” (02/16/18)

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/02/16/commerce-department-suggests-trump-impose-steep-tariffs-or-quotas-on-foreign-steel-and-aluminum–sources.html

—–

2) CA: 212 abducted in Los Angeles as ICE thugs run amok
Source: CBS San Francisco Bay Area

“U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced Friday that its [gang-banger thugs] have [abducted] 212 people in a five-day operation around the Los Angeles region. [The criminals] also served 122 [extortion threats] to businesses that they will be audited to determine whether they are employing people who are in the country illegally [sic]. … The [crime wave] triggered a protest late Thursday in downtown Los Angeles, where a Homeland Security van was blocked from entering the federal Metropolitan Detention Center.” (02/16/18)

http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2018/02/16/212-arrested-in-los-angeles-ice-raids/

—–

3) Biden, in public and private, tiptoes toward a 2020 run
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“Former Vice President Joe Biden is tiptoeing toward a potential run in 2020, even broaching the possibility during a recent gathering of longtime foreign policy aides. Huddled in his newly opened office steps from the U.S. Capitol, Biden began a planning meeting for his new diplomacy center by addressing the elephant in the room. He said he was keeping his 2020 options open, considering it a real possibility. He insisted he had made no decision, and didn’t need to yet, according to five people who either attended the meeting or were briefed on it by those who did. Biden also expressed interest in bringing those in the room onto his team if he decides to launch a campaign. At the same time, he gave them an out: There would be no hard feelings if they decided they were content in their current roles outside of government, said the people, who demanded anonymity to discuss a private meeting.” (02/16/18)

https://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/Biden-in-public-and-private-tiptoes-toward-a-12622033.php

—–

4) Trump: Russians “laughing their asses off” over Russiagate shitshow
Source: Bloomberg

“President Donald Trump has found a point of agreement with Special Counsel Robert Mueller: Russia’s meddling campaign worked, as far as creating chaos in America’s political system. ‘If it was the GOAL of Russia to create discord, disruption and chaos within the U.S. then, with all of the Committee Hearings, Investigations and Party hatred, they have succeeded beyond their wildest dreams,’ Trump said in a tweet Sunday. ‘They are laughing their asses off in Moscow. Get smart America!’” (02/18/18)

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-02-18/trump-says-russians-laughing-their-asses-off-by-sowing-chaos

—–

5) Mexico: Leftist, ruling parties declare presidential picks
Source: US News & World Report

“Political parties in Mexico formally picked as presidential candidates on Sunday a leftist veteran politician with a strong lead in polls and a former finance minister of the ruling party who has trailed by as much as 20 points. The ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) selected Jose Antonio Meade in front of thousands of cheering party members at a Mexico City stadium often used for rock concerts, ahead of a race set to hinge on vows to end crime and corruption while tackling poverty. Meade, 48, lags in polls behind rival Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who was named a candidate by his leftist Morena party on Sunday in an event at a hotel in the capital. The right-left coalition leader who holds second place in recent polls, Ricardo Anaya, was due to be nominated later in the day.” (02/18/18)

https://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2018-02-18/leftist-and-young-buck-lead-as-mexico-parties-make-presidential-picks

—–

6) Kelly overhauls White House clearance procedure
Source: ABC News

“Under pressure over his handling of abuse allegations against a top aide, White House chief of staff John Kelly has ordered sweeping changes in how the White House clears staff members to gain access to classified information, acknowledging that the administration ‘must do better’ in how it handles security clearances. Kelly issued a five-page memo Friday that acknowledged White House mistakes but also put the onus on the FBI and the Justice Department to provide more timely updates on background investigations, asking that any significant derogatory information about staff members be quickly flagged to the White House counsel’s office. The issue has been in the spotlight for more than a week after it was revealed that former staff secretary Rob Porter had an interim security clearance that allowed him access to classified material despite allegations of domestic violence by his two ex-wives.” (02/17/18)

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/wireStory/kelly-overhauls-white-house-clearance-procedure-53158420

—–

7) NC: Mom jailed after baptizing daughter
Source: New York Post

“A North Carolina woman is spending a week in the county jail — because she had her daughter baptized. Kendra Stocks, of Charlotte, began her sentence on Friday after being found in contempt of court. Stocks, 36, had the rite performed on her then-two-year-old in August 2016 in defiance of a judge’s order in a custody battle between herself and the father, Paul Schaaf, The Charlotte Observer reported. The christening happened one day after a Mecklenburg judge gave full custody to Schaaf — ‘specifically including decisions concerning religion,’ the paper reported. … Schaaf was never informed about the baptism — and only learned of it when Stocks posted photos on Facebook, according to the documents. He then notified the courts.” (02/17/18)

https://nypost.com/2018/02/17/mom-jailed-after-baptizing-daughter/

—–

8) Moon won’t discuss possible summit with North Korea’s Kim
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“South Korean President Moon Jae-in said Saturday that he hopes his efforts to engage rival North Korea at the Olympics will also lead to better ties between the North and its other major rival, Washington, as well as help set up talks on ridding the North of its nuclear bombs. But Moon wouldn’t answer a question from The Associated Press about what needs to happen before he’ll take North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un up on his invitation for a summit. He earlier said ‘let’s not get too far ahead’ on a summit, according to his office. Moon has yet to accept the North Korean offer, which was delivered Feb. 10 by Kim’s younger sister, Kim Yo Jong. He’s only said that the Koreas should ‘create an environment’ for talks. There’s a reason for his caution: the United States. Moon likely wants his talks with the North to be accompanied with warming ties between Pyongyang and Washington so there’s less chance of aliening the South’s most crucial ally.” (02/16/18)

https://www.sfgate.com/news/world/article/Moon-won-t-discuss-possible-summit-with-North-12621462.php

—–

9) Report: Mysterious interstellar object is spinning out of control
Source: Fox News

“There is so much we don’t know about how the universe works. Sometimes examples come along that remind us just how much. Such as ‘Oumuamua.’ Using a personalized auto insurance match engine developed by Boston grads drivers can now look for the right coverage for the right price. Given the Hawaiian name for ‘pathfinder’ or ‘scout’ it was first detected in September. The PanSTARRS1 telescope found a new pinprick of light crossing our skies. It was coming from a strange direction. It was moving unusually fast. All of which was tracked back to an interstellar origin — beyond our own Solar System. At first it was dubbed Comet C/2017 U1. But it proved not to be a comet. So it was named ‘Oumuamua.’ Now astronomers have figured out something about its origins, its incredibly long journey and its makeup. The latest revelation is that it is spinning chaotically out of control.” (02/15/18)

http://www.foxnews.com/science/2018/02/13/mysterious-interstellar-object-is-spinning-out-control.html

—–

10) Facebook plans to use US mail to verify IDs of election ad buyers
Source: Raw Story

“Facebook Inc will start using postcards sent by U.S. mail later this year to verify the identities and location of people who want to purchase U.S. election-related advertising on its site, a senior company executive said on Saturday. The postcard verification is Facebook’s latest effort to respond to criticism from lawmakers, security experts and election integrity watchdog groups that it and other social media companies failed to detect and later responded slowly to Russia’s use of their platforms to spread divisive political content, including disinformation, during the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Facebook revealed the plans a day after U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller unsealed an indictment accusing 13 Russians and three Russian companies of conducting a criminal and espionage conspiracy using social media to interfere in the election by boosting Republican Donald Trump and denigrating Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.” (02/17/18)

https://www.rawstory.com/2018/02/facebook-plans-use-us-mail-verify-ids-election-ad-buyers

—–

11) Red Stripe buys Jamaican bobsled team new sled after coach quits
Source: Fox News

“Talk about putting it on the tab. On Feb. 14, Jamaica’s women’s bobsled team found themselves in pinch when their coach Sandra Kiriasis dramatically quit just days before their Olympic debut in the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Games. Worse yet, Kiriasis threatened to take their bobsled with her, BBC reports. Fortunately, Jamaican lager Red Stripe came to the rescue via Twitter. ‘No bobsled, no problem. If you need a new ride @Jambobsled, put it on @RedStripe’s tab. DM us and we’ll be in touch,’ the company’s USA account tweeted on Feb. 15. … In the days since, Red Stripe senior marketing manager Andrew Anguin confirmed to Adweek that the company has proudly purchased a bobsled for Team Jamaica. ‘The games are an honor to compete in, and as the No. 1 beer in Jamaica, we want to help those athletes realize their dreams. The athletes clearly have no quit, so we would love to do our part and put the cost of a new bobsled on our ‘bar tab” Anguin said.” (02/17/18)

http://www.foxnews.com/food-drink/2018/02/17/red-stripe-buys-jamaican-bobsled-team-new-sled-after-coach-quits.html

—–

12) NJ: Pregnant woman hurt when man rams stolen bakery truck into Planned Parenthood
Source: Raw Story

“A 31-year-old man crashed a stolen bakery delivery truck into an East Orange Planned Parenthood clinic, in an attack that injured a pregnant woman and two other people, authorities said Friday. Marckles Alcius, of Lowell, Massachusetts, was charged with attempting to cause widespread injury or damage, six counts of aggravated assault, theft and weapons offenses in the Wednesday incident at the health clinic, according to the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office. In a statement, Acting Essex County Prosecutor Robert D. Laurino and East Orange Public Safety Director Sheliah Coley called the crash a ‘truck attack.’ A staff member and two patients, including the pregnant woman, suffered minor injuries, according to authorities. Emergency medical crews brought two of the injured to the hospital while the third sought treatment herself. All of the injured have since been released from the hospital, officials said. Authorities were investigating other possible charges in the ongoing probe, according to Essex County Assistant Prosecutor Adam Wells.” (02/17/18)

https://www.rawstory.com/2018/02/pregnant-woman-hurt-man-rams-stolen-bakery-truck-planned-parenthood-cops-say

—–

13) Pope renews Vatican’s anti-sexual abuse panel
Source: BBC News [UK state media]

“Pope Francis has announced the renewal of the Church’s panel tasked with combating sexual abuse of children, in the wake of a fresh controversy. The Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors is made up of eight men and eight women — nine of which are new members. Its original three-year mandate expired in December. In recent weeks, Pope Francis has been under fire for his defence of a bishop accused of witnessing sexual abuse. During his trip to Chile in January, he told journalists that in the case of Bishop Juan Barros: ‘There is not a single piece of proof against him. Everything is slander. Is this clear?’ His remarks offended some of the victims of Fernando Karadima. They said Bishop Barros was present while Karadima molested them decades ago – and did nothing. Karadima was relieved of his duties by the Vatican in 2011 — but Juan Barros was installed as a bishop in 2015, amid protests.” (02/17/18)

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-43098231

—–

14) Argentina: Father pretends to be 11-year-old daughter to find and attack sexual harasser
Source: Fox News

“A father in Argentina took actions into his own hands after he pretended to be his 11-year-old daughter in order to locate and pummel the man who harassed the girl via a messaging app. Walter Rodriguez said his daughter told him a 29-year-old man named German Acosta, who she met through WhatsApp, was sending inappropriate messages and demanding to meet her, El Pais reported. The girl also said he was trying to convince her to lie to her parents and kept asking for pictures of her in undergarments. In one of the texts to Acosta, the pre-teen said she was a virgin, to which Acosta replied: ‘That’s great.’ Rodriguez took control of the text conversations and posed as his daughter to arrange a meeting with Acosta.” (02/17/18)

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2018/02/17/father-pretends-to-be-11-year-old-daughter-to-find-and-attack-sexual-harasser.html

—–

15) In a world first, Switzerland deems it illegal to boil a lobster
Source: USA Today

“When it comes to cooking fresh lobster, the Swiss are now saying: We feel your pain. A law goes into effect March 1 that bans the common cooking method of tossing a live lobster into a big pot of boiling water, quickly killing the tasty crustacean. That practice is being outlawed because the Swiss say it’s cruel and lobsters can sense pain. The first national legislation of its kind in the world calls for a more humane death for lobsters, by ‘rendering them unconscious’ before plunging them into scalding water. Two methods are recommended: Electrocution or sedating the lobster by dipping it into salt water and then thrusting a knife into its brain. The same law also gives domestic pets further protections, such as dogs can no longer be punished for barking. The measure is part of the broad principle of ‘animal dignity’ enshrined in Switzerland’s constitution, the only country to have such a provision. The constitution already protects how various species must be treated and specifies that animals need socialization.” (02/17/18)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2018/02/16/new-swiss-law-pain-free-deaths-lobsters-flushing-goldfish-down-toilet-breaking-law-according-new-swi/341412002

—–

16) TX: Congressional candidate for Houston endures backlash for untimely gun ad
Source: Raw Story

“A GOP congressional candidate who hopes to represent Houston in the U.S. House of Representatives faces criticism for an untimely ad campaign heavily featuring guns. Kathleen Wall, who is vying for the seat of retiring GOP Rep. Ted Poe, released an ad this week depicting her firing a rifle, which was reportedly first seen within 24 hours of the devastating school shooting in Parkland, Florida. Social media responses to the ads are scathing, especially from the viewers who saw Wall’s commercial during coverage of the Florida shooting. Wall also received attention due to a mailer that some residents received late this week.” [editor’s note: Funny how showing someone firing a gun gets trashed, because an incident happened elsewhere, where self-defense had been prohibited – SAT] (02/17/18)

https://www.rawstory.com/2018/02/congressional-candidate-houston-endures-backlash-untimely-gun-ad/

—–

17) FL: School massacre suspect was on authorities’ radar in 2016
Source: Reuters

“A teenager accused of fatally shooting 17 people at a Florida high school was investigated by police and state officials as far back as 2016 after slashing his arm in a social media video, and saying he wanted to buy a gun, but authorities determined he was receiving sufficient support, newspapers said on Saturday. Nikolas Cruz, 19, is charged with committing multiple murders on Wednesday at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. More than a dozen people also were wounded in the deadliest shooting at a U.S. high school. The charges can bring the death penalty, but prosecutors have not yet said if they will seek capital punishment. Days after the killings, a somber series of vigils and funerals were being held in and around Parkland, a Fort Lauderdale suburb of about 32,000 people.” [editor’s note: So let’s remind ourselves that once more this kid was on the list already, but FBI was too focused on political CYA -SAT] (02/17/18)

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-florida-shooting/florida-school-massacre-suspect-on-authorities-radar-in-2016-media-idUSKCN1G10BI

—–

18) Molson Coors considers marijuana legalization a “risk factor”
Source: Smell the Truth

“A major beer company now considers legal cannabis as a threat to future business. Molson Coors Brewing Company labeled the spread of marijuana legalization as a ‘risk factor’ its annual financial report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday, reports Fortune. ‘Although the ultimate impact is currently unknown, the emergence of legal cannabis in certain U.S. states and Canada may result in a shift of discretionary income away from our products or a change in consumer preferences away from beer,’ the filing reads. ‘As a result, a shift in consumer preferences away from our products or beer or a decline in the consumption of our products could result in a material adverse effect on our business and financial results.’ Consumer groups predicted in 2017 that further legalization could cost the alcohol industry billions in total sales, while recent research found a decline in alcohol sales in states with legal marijuana laws in place.” [editor’s note: So are they going to claim they need “protectionist” legislation? Shoes for industry, comrade! – SAT] (02/16/18)

https://blog.sfgate.com/smellthetruth/2018/02/15/molson-coors-considers-marijuana-legalization-a-risk-factor

—–

19) Iceland: Proposal to ban genital mutilation triggers protests against “attack on Judaism”
Source: Daily Mail [UK]

“Jewish groups have strongly criticised a move by five different groups in the Icelandic parliament parliament to ban circumcision. They have warned the proposed ban would make Iceland one of the only countries in the world ‘to ban one of the most central, if not the most central rite in the Jewish tradition in modern times.’ Punishment for those convicted of performing the religious practice would be six years in prison, media reports say. … It is unclear how Iceland’s Muslim community — which is far bigger than its Jewish population — has reacted to the proposals. Muslims are still the largest single religious group worldwide to carry out circumcisions.” [editor’s note: Not that complicated. You get to believe anything you want to believe, but you don’t get to assault and mutilate helpless infants pursuant to those beliefs, any more than you get to cut the hearts out of unwilling human sacrifices, throw unwilling virgins into volcanoes, etc. – TLK] (02/16/18)

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5401215/Iceland-ban-circumcisions-trigger-Jewish-protests.html

—–

20) Atari just announced its own cryptocurrency — and its stock already spiked over 60%
Source: Business Insider

“Forget about ‘Pong’ — Atari’s next big move is into an entirely new industry: cryptocurrency. Atari SA, the French holding company that now oversees all ‘Atari’ properties, announced earlier this month that it’s working on a cryptocurrency named ‘Atari Token.’ Moreover, that cryptocurrency is intended for use on a new digital entertainment platform. Atari itself isn’t creating either. Instead, a company named Infinity Networks is collaborating with Atari on the project. In exchange for a ‘long-term license’ to use Atari’s name, Infinity Networks is creating a blockchain-based platform — a storefront, essentially — for various forms of digital entertainment, ‘ranging from video games to movies and music.’” (02/16/18)

http://www.businessinsider.com/atari-is-creating-its-own-cryptocurrency-2018-2

—–

21) SEC kills Chinese-linked takeover of Chicago Stock Exchange
Source: Chicago Tribune

“U.S. regulators rejected a bid by a Chinese-linked consortium to take over the Chicago Stock Exchange, extinguishing an ambitious dream of starting an international listing venue from a minuscule market. … In a document posted on the SEC’s website Thursday, the regulator said the deal didn’t comply with U.S. rules governing stock exchanges. The SEC said it couldn’t resolve concerns about the proposed ownership structure, which would’ve given 29 percent of the company to a China-based shareholder.” (02/16/18)

http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-biz-sec-chicago-stock-exchange-chinese-takeover-20180216-story.html

—–

22) VA chief of staff resigns amid secretary’s travel scandal
Source: Military Times

“The chief of staff for Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin abruptly resigned on Friday amid a growing scandal over her involvement in a controversial overseas trip and subsequent claims that her email accounts were hacked by would-be saboteurs. Vivieca Wright Simpson, who had served at the department for 32 years, had been a target of critics within VA for what they saw as bureaucratic inaction on a host of reforms proposed by President Donald Trump’s administration. … In a scathing report released Wednesday, an inspector general investigation accused her of doctoring emails before the secretary’s July 2017 trip to Denmark to justify bringing his wife along as an official guest. As a result, her airfare and related costs (totaling more than $4,000) were covered by taxpayer funds. … The secretary has vigorously disputed those charges, but also agreed to pay back the disputed charges and go along with the inspector general’s recommendations for reforms.” (02/16/18)

https://www.militarytimes.com/veterans/2018/02/16/va-chief-of-staff-resigns-amid-secretarys-travel-scandal/

—–

23) Frivolous lawsuit, frivolous settlement: Google removes “View Image” button from search results
Source: Engadget

“Say goodbye to the ‘View Image’ link in Google Images. Google announced a few changes to its image search today, one of which being the removal of its option to check out an image without visiting the site that hosts it. It might be a bummer for some, but since it was a stipulation of Google’s settlement with Getty Images, it was only a matter of time before it happened. In a tweet, Google said today that the changes ‘are designed to strike a balance between serving user needs and publisher concerns, both stakeholders we value.’ In 2016, Getty Images filed a complaint against Google to the European Union claiming that the company’s image search promoted piracy.” [editor’s note: The button didn’t “encourage” anything that removing it would prevent – TLK] (02/16/18)

https://www.engadget.com/2018/02/16/google-removes-view-image-from-search/

—–

24) UT: Romney makes US Senate run official
Source: Washington Post

“Mitt Romney on Friday announced his long-expected Senate bid in his adopted state of Utah with a low-key rollout intended to duck roiling Republican divisions and avoid signaling that he will play the role of foil to President Trump. ‘Utah’s economic and political success is a model for our nation,’ Romney said in a written announcement distributed Friday morning. ‘I am ready to fight for this great state and advocate for solutions that improve the lives of Utahns.’ In his announcement, and in a video, Romney touted his leadership of the 2002 Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, his tenure as Massachusetts governor, his degree from Brigham Young University and his 24 grandchildren. He made no mention of Trump.” (02/16/18)

https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/romney-makes-it-official-hes-running-for-senate-in-utah/2018/02/16/1dc0103e-1322-11e8-9570-29c9830535e5_story.html

—–

25) Former Playmate alleges Trump system for covering up affairs
Source: CNN

“A former Playboy model who claims she had an affair with Donald Trump beginning in 2006 is going public with a description of Trump’s alleged system for concealing affairs. In an eight-page, handwritten document that The New Yorker obtained, Karen McDougal detailed her alleged affair with Trump for nine months from June 2006 to April 2007, when Trump was two years into his marriage with Melania Trump, the future first lady. … The document describes how Trump allegedly carried out his affair with McDougal — paying for dinner in a private bungalow at the Beverly Hills Hotel, offering her money after the first time they had sex and reimbursing her for travel. ‘No paper trails for him,’ McDougal wrote, according to The New Yorker. A White House spokesperson denied the affair in a statement to the magazine.” (02/16/18)

https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/16/politics/donald-trump-karen-mcdougal-national-enquirer/index.html

***** Everybody Has An Opinion *****

26) Why we must “politicize” guns
Source: Garrison Center
by Thomas L Knapp

“Every time there’s a mass shooting, or even a particularly well-publicized single homicide, all of America’s political factions go directly to battle stations on the question of whether or not the violence can be reduced or eliminated with ‘gun control’ legislation. As the debate rages on, the calls begin to ring out from different corners that whatever else we do, we must avoid ‘politicizing’ the issue. Have you ever noticed that the ‘let’s not get political’ talk always seems to emanate from the side that perceives itself as on the losing end of the argument at the moment?” (02/18/18)

http://thegarrisoncenter.org/archives/12886

—–

27) George W. Bush doesn’t deserve the media’s efforts at rehabilitation
Source: The Hill
by James Bovard

“‘Our democracy is only as good as people trust the results,’ former President George W. Bush declared in a presumably well-paid speech last week in the United Arab Emirates, a notorious Arab dictatorship. Bush is being exalted as if he is the second coming of George Washington thanks to his implied slams against the Trump administration. But Bush’s actions during his eight year reign did far more to ravage democracy at home and abroad than most people realize. Thanks to gushing media coverage, Bush is enjoying one of the greatest comebacks in modern American history. In the summer of 2008, only 22 percent of Americans approved of Bush and 41 percent said he was the ‘worst president ever.’ Last month, a poll showed that 61 percent of Americans now approve of Bush, and his support among Democrats quintupled, from 11 percent in early 2009 to 54 percent now. If Americans want to understand current political challenges, they need to recall Bush’s forgotten debacles.” (02/15/18)

http://thehill.com/opinion/white-house/374081-george-w-bush-doesnt-deserve-the-medias-efforts-at-rehabilitation

—–

28) Syria could be Washington’s next big foreign policy failure
Source: Cato Institute
by Doug Bandow

“President Donald Trump criticized candidate Hillary Clinton for her interventionist tendencies. Now he plans to maintain U.S. forces amid battling Kurds, Turks, Russians, Iranians and contending Syrian factions. Washington’s policy is frankly mad. Having attained its primary objective, defeating the Islamic State, or ISIS, the Trump administration should wrap up American operations in Syria.” (02/16/18)

https://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/syria-could-be-washingtons-next-big-foreign-policy-failure

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29) “Peace through strength” is a racket
Source: Libertarian Institute
by Sheldon Richman

“Donald Trump has embraced the popular ‘peace through strength’ doctrine (PTSD) with his characteristic panache …. will acknowledge that the PTSD has surface appeal. Why not show the world the United States is so awesomely powerful that no one in his right mind would even think to get on its wrong side? It seems to make sense in a practical sort of way. Once people believe that, of course, they are softened up to accept unlimited military spending and the concomitant deficits and debt.” (02/16/18)

https://www.libertarianinstitute.org/daily-featured-articles/tgif-peace-strength-racket/

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30) Want to see gun control enacted? Support a movement to arm all black Americans
Source: Raw Story
by Kali Holloway

“The only greater certainty than another mass shooting in this country is the likelihood that it will be met with inaction. … The fatigue incurred from the whole circular spectacle makes it feel like it might just be easier to start labeling lawmakers either ‘pro-child murder’ or ‘anti-child murder.’ It’s impossible to reason with the disingenuous logic that mass slaughter is just the cost of freedom, and not a consequence of NRA-owned politicians, which is why even the mildest gun reform seems impossible. Ending mass shootings might seem like a hopeless cause in light of all this, but that kind of thinking ignores the historic infallibility of racism to move American political mountains. The shift in the public face of poverty from white to black helped take us from the New Deal to the destruction of the welfare state; conversely, as drug addiction has gone from being an ‘inner city’ (read: black) to a ‘suburban’ (read: white) problem, the state has transformed from carceral to compassionate. A movement (both visible and vocal) to arm black Americans en masse would fire up GOP political will toward gun control, and probably at speeds currently unimaginable.” (02/16/18)

https://www.rawstory.com/2018/02/want-see-gun-control-enacted-support-movement-arm-black-americans

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31) The Trump-Russia collusion narrative is dead
Source: Fox News Forum
by Fred Fleitz

“Friday’s grand jury indictment in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election destroys Democratic claims that the Trump presidential campaign colluded with Russia to win the race, and that the Russian interference cost Hillary Clinton the election. It is now time for Mueller to look into real election interference and collusion with the Russians by the Democrats. The grand jury indicted 13 Russians and three Russian entities for their alleged efforts to interfere with the 2016 election. The indictment says the Russians hid their involvement in this scheme and communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump campaign. There was no allegation in the indictment that any American was a knowing participant in the scheme. Boom. The Democratic Trump-Russia collusion narrative is dead. But the left will continue to argue that Russia handed the presidency to Donald Trump. … Don’t be fooled. The indictment says the Russian election interference effort started in 2014. It says that the Russians staged rallies for and against Trump after the election and also promoted the Bernie Sanders campaign.” (02/16/18)

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2018/02/17/trump-russia-collusion-narrative-is-dead.html

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32) The Satoshi Revolution, chapter 6, part 1
Source: Bitcoin.com
by Wendy McElroy

“Privacy is the battleground upon which cryptocurrency will ultimately rise or fall. The engine of crypto, the blockchain, is founded on the premise of anonymity or pseudonymity. The blockchain was specifically designed to obsolete ‘trusted third parties,’ such as central banks, which act as data-collection centers for government. Wei Dai and [Steve] Mnuchin may seem to be polar opposites on privacy, but they are saying much the same thing, although their conclusions are antithetical. Privacy prevents violence. For Wei Dai, this is a good thing. Privacy is overwhelmingly positive for individuals because it empowers and protects them against government. … For Mnuchin, privacy’s role in preventing violence is a bad thing because he administers government coercion against peaceful individuals.” (02/17/18)

https://news.bitcoin.com/the-satoshi-revolution-chapter-6-crypto-privacy-prevents-violence-and-crime-segment-1/

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33) The Russiagate intelligence wars: What we do and don’t know
Source: The Nation
by Bob Dreyfuss

“Underneath the tug-of-war between Republicans and Democrats on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, there are probably reams of classified data pertaining to Russiagate (including sources and methods of the intelligence business) about which we, the public, know very little. The dueling HPSCI memos from each side of the aisle pertain to just one question in this investigation: Namely, what did the CIA and the FBI know about Carter Page (who served for several months as a foreign-policy adviser to Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign and who had multiple contacts with high-level Russians), and was it enough to secure a FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) court warrant to surveil him? What the memo wars reveal is that it’s exceedingly difficult and often controversial, to release even bits and pieces of Top Secret data. That includes intelligence that might relate not just to possible Trump-Russia collusion but also to the broader question of what we know, what we don’t know, and what we might learn about the original question: What did Russia do in 2015–16 to affect the course of the vote?” (02/16/18)

https://www.thenation.com/article/the-russiagate-intelligence-wars-what-we-do-and-dont-know

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34) Give protectionists the boot
Source: Cafe Hayek
by Don Boudreaux

“Note the sales pitch for this boot-maker in the banner ad: ‘Designed in America, Made in Italy.’ What a splendid example of globalization! American producers cooperate with Italian producers to their mutual advantage. The availability of workers in Italy actually to stitch materials together into boots raises the productivity of boot designers in America; the creativity and effort of boot designers in America raises the productivity of the workers in Italy who actually construct the boots. (Productivity, do note, is properly reckoned as value-added.) In other words, these American workers and Italian workers complement each other, each making the other more productive of value — and each, thus, helping the other’s wages to rise.” (02/18/18)

http://cafehayek.com/2018/02/give-protectionists-boot.html

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35) Five ways the Olympics are undermining democracy and exploiting workers
Source: In These Times
by Jonny Coleman

“We’re almost halfway through 17 frigid days of Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, and U.S. media coverage has been banal, predictable and full of holes. American press outlets, largely ignorant of Korean history and politics, have demonized North Korea and Russia while pumping out trivial stories about the number of condoms at the Olympic Village. What’s lost in most mainstream coverage is the true human and economic cost of these mega-events. The cartoonishly ruthless capitalists at the International Olympic Committee (IOC) shamelessly operate above the law, and their only goal is to extract a deep profit from athletes. The IOC’s practices are in direct opposition to democracy, yet sports pundits like Mike Tirico will have you believe the global competition is a magical event that can fix the world. Unfortunately, for adults out there who don’t believe in magic, the Olympics are rotten from every conceivable angle.” [editor’s note: I guess someone had to piss in the nationalistic chili eventually; well done! – SAT] (02/16/18)

http://inthesetimes.com/working/entry/20913/Olympics-Korea-Exploitation-Winter-Games-Pyeongchang-displacement

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36) The NRA myth
Source: Independent Country
by James Leroy Wilson

“This past week a shooting spree at Parkland, FL school reignited the gun control debate. Those who call for the prohibition of some or all guns have blamed the National Rifle Association’s campaign contributions to (mostly Republican) members of Congress for its failure to act. But the Gun Lobby isn’t like other lobbies. It’s a citizen’s group. It doesn’t represent corporate interests.” (02/17/18)

http://independentcountry.blogspot.com/2018/02/the-nra-myth.html

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37) Democracy and its discontents
Source: The American Prospect
by Arthur Goldhammer

“Throughout the four and a half decades of the Cold War, the consoling myth of the self-styled Free World was that democratic politics constituted the end point of political evolution. It was an article of faith that once the blighted societies on the wrong side of the Iron Curtain attained democracy, the ‘end of history’ would commence, as Francis Fukuyama memorably put it in 1989. Political contestation would not disappear, but the battle henceforth would be about mere ‘economic calculation’ and “the endless solving of technical problems” rather than fundamental political ideology. That things haven’t worked out quite as Fukuyama imagined is the common theme of the three books under review. All three take as their fundamental premise the idea that democracy, far from being a stable and all-but-irreversible political regime, is instead fragile, perpetually vulnerable, and prey to both internal pathologies and external enemies. It is no mystery why anxiety about the stability of democracy is rampant today.” (02/16/18)

http://prospect.org/article/democracy-and-its-discontents

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38) Intellectual property and liberty
Source: Strike the Root
by Alex R Knight III

“An ongoing debate in libertarian quarters has been and is whether or not intellectual property (or IP, for short) is a concept which has any place in a free society. While honest arguments on both sides can be compelling, there also seems to be a great deal of misconception surrounding the entire topic, and my goal here is to attempt to demystify some of it, and perhaps offer a clearer picture than may have been heretofore available.” (02/16/18)

http://www.strike-the-root.com/intellectual-property-and-liberty

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39) Peter Thiel’s lonely culture war
Source: The New Republic
by Alex Shephard

“Peter Thiel has had a pretty good couple of years. He helped elect President Trump, speaking on his behalf at the 2016 Republican National Convention. Trump’s tax bill, passed in November of the following year, will undoubtedly grow his multibillion-dollar fortune. He bankrupted Gawker, the culmination of a decade-long campaign to get revenge on the site after its defunct sister site outed him. He then twisted the knife by placing a bid on the website when it went up for auction. He has funneled his riches into various bizarre experiments, including one in which young people were given thousands of dollars for their blood. His wealth and power has given him a platform to not only shape media (his destruction of Gawker has had a chilling effect on the media as a whole) but to push his own ideas, like that the New Deal is bad and monopolies are good. Via his perch on Facebook’s board of directors (Thiel was an early investor in the company, though he sold his 10 percent stake in 2012), he has helped shape one of the most powerful corporations in the world.” (02/16/18)

https://newrepublic.com/article/147109/peter-thiels-lonely-culture-war

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40) Massacres, here and abroad
Source: Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G Hornberger

“With mass shootings come calls for gun control. It’s become a predictable response. Never mind that there was gun control at the site of the latest massacre at that public school in Florida. It’s against the law to carry an AR-15 onto public schools in Florida. That’s a gun-control measure. Its aim is to prevent killings at public schools. At the risk of belaboring the obvious, it didn’t work. That’s because the shooter chose to violate it.” (02/16/18)

https://www.fff.org/2018/02/16/massacres-here-and-abroad/

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41) Why a war on guns wouldn’t work
Source: American Institute for Economic Research
by Max Gulker, PhD

“This week in Florida, we saw another horrifying school shooting, this one taking the lives of 17 people. With it have come the usual calls to get rid of the guns, along with others urging us not to politicize the issue so soon after it happened. I say, politicize away. If there’s something our society can do to prevent or reduce these ghastly incidents, we need to be talking about it. The trouble is, I don’t think getting rid of the guns is possible. … At Thanksgiving this year, we somehow got on this topic. One of our guests said, ‘We at least need to get rid of those assault rifles.’ ‘How are we going to get rid of them?’ I asked. ‘By outlawing and confiscating them,’ she said. ‘How’s that working out with cocaine?’ I asked.” (02/16/18)

https://www.aier.org/blog/why-war-guns-wouldnt-work

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42) Please don’t experiment with monetary policy
Source: EconLog
by Scott Sumner

“I am seeing an increasing number of pundits calling for policymakers to experiment with the economy. The basic idea seems to be to have (demand-side) policy run hot; to see just how much growth potential is out there. This was a bad idea in the 1960s, and seems like an equally bad idea today.” (02/16/18)

http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/2018/02/please_dont_exp.html

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43) How democracy’s spread dashed dreams of liberalism
Source: Reuters
by John Lloyd

“‘South Africa’s Zuma is out’ was the Washington Post’s headline on Thursday morning. ‘Will things actually get better?’ The question signifies more than journalistic skepticism. It points to a shift in the liberal worldview. Over more than a quarter of a century, that view (triumphant as, in 1991, both Soviet communism and South African apartheid were swept away) has been knocked hard. Interventions in Iraq and Libya, undertaken in part on the liberal grounds of a ‘responsibility to protect’ a population from its murderous leaders, are now viewed as having produced more chaos than liberation. The struggle to keep the Taliban at bay in Afghanistan is increasingly regarded through a similar prism; the American journalist Steve Coll wrote last month that U.S. war aims are ‘riddled with contradictions and illusions.’” (02/16/18)

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-lloyd-liberalism-commentary/commentary-how-democracys-spread-dashed-dreams-of-liberalism-idUSKCN1G0295

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44) Stop playing politics with school shootings
Source: spiked
by Brendan O’Neill

“Something remarkable, and disturbing, has happened in the discussion about mass violence in recent years. Observers increasingly devote themselves to depoliticising acts of Islamist terror and to politicising mass school shootings. They downgrade Islamist-inspired slaughter, actively discouraging any kind of political, far less passionate reaction to such violence, and they upgrade school shootings, always insisting that we make them political, that we engage our passions in response to them, that we call them by the right word: ‘terrorism.’ They drain the politics from what are clearly political acts of mass murder while injecting political meaning into what are clearly not political acts of murder. This is not only peculiar — it is positively dangerous.” (02/16/18)

http://www.spiked-online.com/newsite/article/stop-playing-politics-with-school-shootings/

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45) For the Dreamers: No deportation, no citizenship
Source: Ludwig von Mises Institute
by Ryan McMaken

“Opposition to deportation of the Dreamers — especially those who are still minors — has been significant, with much of the opposition geared around the idea that some minors are being deported to foreign countries where they don’t even know the language or local culture after having been in the US for most of their lives. On the other hand, support for deportations has centered on fears that allowing the Dreamers to stay in the US will encourage a new influx of immigrants who will in turn become citizens quickly and unduly influence the political system. Also at play is the concern that some immigrants are a net drain on social welfare benefits and on other government-provided amenities such as public schools. For many Americans who are concerned with freedom and free markets, the solution to this situation has sometimes not necessarily been clear.” [editor’s note: Oh, it’s crystal clear. Those who are pretending it isn’t are doing that because they want to abandon freedom and free markets in just this one case while pretending not to – TLK] (02/16/18)

https://mises.org/wire/dreamers-no-deportation-no-citizenship

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46) Repeal gun-free zones
Source: USA Today
by Erich Pratt

“The Florida shooting this week was heartbreaking. As a father of 10 children, it hurts to see this kind of violence being perpetrated against our schoolchildren. But this week’s events are also infuriating because we refuse to learn the lessons of the past. Killers continue targeting locations where guns are not allowed. Ninety-eight percent of public mass shootings in this country occur in gun-free zones — the Florida school being one of them. No wonder that 81% of police officers support arming teachers and principals, so that the real first responders (the potential victims) can protect the children. Anti-gun liberals tell us that these types of shootings don’t occur in other countries. But that’s a lie. The U.S. is not even in the top 10 when one compares international death rates resulting from mass shootings.” (02/15/18)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2018/02/15/repeal-gun-free-zones-erich-pratt-editorials-debates/110464412

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47) Saving children
Source: The Price of Liberty
by Nathan Barton

“It has been NINETEEN years since Columbine, and apparently, no one with any power has learned a thing. Instead the American people continue to herd young people into killing zones and do NOTHING effective to defend them. It makes John Stossel’s commentary ‘Saving Kids from Government Schools’ take on a whole new meaning. He’s talking about how private schools seem to succeed while public schools fail to teach effectively, especially when dealing with the riffraff like the homeless, minorities, poor, and even disturbed kids. But his headline states the truth: While a few students are killed in private schools by madmen, the vast majority that are killed in mass murders like this are in PUBLIC schools: government-ruined, theft-funded institutions that are prisons in all but name.” (02/16/18)

https://thepriceofliberty.org/2018/02/16/saving-children/

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48) Killer inlaudibilis
Source: Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

“On the day that Alexander the Great was born, or so the ancients tell us, a man named Herostratus burned down one of the Seven Wonders of the World, the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus. Why? Just for the infamy. Which is why the Ephesians proscribed mention of the man’s name. That is called a damnatio. Obviously, that damnatio didn’t stick, for we know his name now. How? Historian Theopompus recorded it for our … edification? Vilification? I say we should follow Ephesian example and not mention by name the recent Florida school shooter/murderer of students.” (02/16/18)

http://thisiscommonsense.com/2018/02/16/killer-inlaudibilis/

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49) Expanding the military budget is wasteful and unnecessary
Source: The American Conservative
by Daniel Larison

“Support for expanding an already bloated, excessive military budget is broad and bipartisan, but it is also profoundly misguided. For one thing, much of this spending has had and will have little or nothing to do with actually defending the United States or its allies, and most of it isn’t necessary for that purpose. The U.S. spends this much on a military this large in order to police and attack other parts of the world, and the only reason to increase that spending for an even larger military is to do more of those things. We should call it military spending or hegemony spending or imperial spending, but we should stop the bad habit of referring to it as spending on defense.” (02/16/18)

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/larison/expanding-the-military-budget-is-wasteful-and-unnecessary/

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50) Trump’s big infrastructure con
Source: Our Future
by Leo Gerard

“The administration’s infrastructure proposal, released this week, bears no resemblance to Candidate Trump’s campaign pledges. It shamelessly shirks the funding burden, and stops government construction projects that serve the public good. Candidate Trump boasted that he would double what his opponent Hillary Clinton said she’d spend on infrastructure. But the scheme released by the Trump administration this week not only fails to do that, it would rob vital and cherished social safety net programs to pay for a pittance of improvements. It is nothing but a con.” (02/16/18)

https://ourfuture.org/20180216/an-infrastructure-con

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51) As Mueller moves forward, lingering questions about Comey and Clinton
Source: Christian Science Monitor
by Warren Richey

“The challenge facing Special Counsel Robert Mueller in his investigation of President Trump and his associates extends beyond determining whether there was a conspiracy with Russians to meddle in the 2016 election or an attempt to obstruct the FBI’s investigation. In a larger sense, Mr. Mueller must confront the grim prospect that whatever his final conclusions in the Trump-Russia investigation, they will likely be met with suspicion (and possibly rejection) by a significant portion of the country. Rhetoric surrounding the investigation has grown increasingly bitter as members of Congress promote sharply divergent narratives to explain the unfolding confrontation. The message from Democrats: Expect nothing less than indictments and/or a Trump impeachment. The message from Trump supporters: A ‘deep state’ conspiracy is undermining the president and his administration. It remains to be seen whether Mueller and his team of prosecutors and investigators can cut through the fog and fury of Washington politics to reach a sober, credible outcome.” [editor’s note: Nice to see a respected “mainstream source” reminding us of all this – SAT] (02/16/18)

https://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Politics/2018/0216/As-Mueller-moves-forward-lingering-questions-about-Comey-and-Clinton

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52) Taxing innovators to pay for universal welfare is a terrible idea
Source: Investors Business Daily
by staff

“A new ‘study’ in Britain suggests that by raising taxes sharply on Facebook, Amazon and Apple, the government could pay for a universal basic income (UBI) for all Britons. It’s an absurd idea, which is why it can’t be counted out. The so-called FANG companies (the above-mentioned three, plus Google and Netflix) have been vilified now for years in Europe and in the U.S. as ‘monopolies’ (and worse, as ‘predators’). When such strident rhetoric is used by politicians, you know they’re going in for the kill. There’s money to be made in taking down big, successful companies. In the case of Britain, the left-wing paper The Guardian reports, the Royal Society of Arts (that’s right, Arts) recommends that ‘Britain could raise new taxes on Amazon, Facebook and Apple to give every citizen under the age of 55 as much as £10,000 ($14,000) in a form of universal basic income … helping to counter the growing risk of job losses from automation and artificial intelligence.’” (02/16/18)

https://www.investors.com/politics/editorials/taxing-innovators-to-pay-for-universal-welfare-is-a-terrible-idea

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53) The war on dissent: The specter of divisiveness
Source: CounterPunch
by CJ Hopkins

“A spectre is haunting Western democracy — the spectre of ‘divisiveness.’ After eight blessed years of peace and prosperity under the glorious reign of Obama the Benevolent, suddenly, we find ourselves besieged on all sides by Russian-sponsored sowers of ‘discord,’ disseminators of ‘disinformation,’ inculcators of ‘confusion’ and ‘chaos,’ and other enemies of our ‘democratic values.’ These devilish instigators of ‘disunion’ and ‘distrust’ are determined to deceive us into doubting ‘the truth’ by exposing us to ‘divisive ideas’ and seducing us with their cynical skepticism into questioning the integrity of our political leaders, our intelligence agencies, and the corporate media, who would never, ever dream of lying to us … or so goes the new official narrative being rolled out by the corporatocracy. It is utterly stupefying to watch as millions of Americans conform their beliefs and behavior to this official narrative like Inner Party Members in 1984.” (02/16/18)

https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/02/16/the-war-on-dissent-the-specter-of-divisiveness/

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54) No, there haven’t been 18 school shootings this year
Source: Reason
by Eric Boehm

“The horrific shooting that left 17 dead at a Florida high school this week was not, in fact, the 18th such incident this year. Wait — you might be thinking — I’ve seen that number reported everywhere in the past two days. On news broadcasts, on social media, in official statements from senators and mayors (and celebrities). At this moment it is literally the first Google News result for the number ’18.’ Indeed, that statistic has been everywhere. It is also, as The Washington Post reported Thursday evening, ‘flat wrong.’ Unless your definition of ‘school shooting’ is broad enough to include suicides in school parking lots or accidental gun discharges that didn’t harm anyone.” (02/16/18)

https://reason.com/blog/2018/02/16/there-havent-been-18-school-shootings

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55) When former spies turn into TV “experts”
Source: OpEdNews
by Philip Giraldi

“Once upon a time in the United States there was a general perception that organizations like the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) were both apolitical and high-minded, existing only to calmly and professionally promote the safety and security of the nation. Directors of both organizations often retired quietly without fanfare to compose their memoirs, but apart from that, they did not meddle in politics and maintained low profiles. There was a widespread belief at CIA that former officers should rightly retire to a log cabin in the Blue Ridge Mountains where they could breed Labrador retrievers or cultivate orchids. … Currently the senior officials who were so hostile to Donald Trump have decided against going quietly into their generously rewarded retirements. Morell has long been a paid contributing ‘expert’ for CBS news, Hayden has had the same role at CNN, and they are are now being joined by John Brennan at NBC.” (02/16/18)

https://www.opednews.com/articles/When-Former-Spies-Turn-int-by-Philip-Giraldi-CIA_Cia-Director-John-Brennan_Media-News-180216-854.html

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56) Good riddance, Janet, you were a colossal failure, part 1
Source: Cobden Centre
by David Stockman

“This is one for the record books. During Janet Yellen’s last week in office, the Dow dropped by 1,095 points or 4.1%. But by her lights, apparently, that wasn’t even a warning bell — just the market clearing its collective throat. So on the way out the door our Keynesian school marm could not resist delivering what will soon be seen as a grand self-indictment. There’s nothing to worry about, she averred, because Wall Street’s OK and main street is positively awesome …” (02/16/18)

http://www.cobdencentre.org/2018/02/stockman-good-riddance-janet-you-were-a-colossal-failure-part-1/

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57) Overdue
Source: The Honest Courtesan
by Maggie McNeill

“When I was an undergrad, I came up with a model for how cultures develop over time. It was divided into four stages: Barbarism: All substance, little form. Barbaric cultures have youth, vigor, drive and often a lot of good ideas; they just haven’t learned to apply them to best effect yet. … Civilization: Form and substance in balance. Civilized cultures are mature, but still strong, and have developed institutions, systems and mores that reflect their values and ideas. … Decadence: All form, waning substance. Decadent cultures have outlived their youth and vigor, and are obsessed with their own past greatness. … Decay: Corrupt form, no substance. Decaying cultures are those which have completely lost their way …. At the time, I wasn’t sure if the US was at the very end of the second stage or somewhere in the third. I hadn’t even thought about that for many years, until recent events made it very clear to me that it’s the latter.” (02/16/18)

https://maggiemcneill.wordpress.com/2018/02/16/overdue/

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58) Quantum Vibe, 02/16/18
Source: Big Head Press
by Scott Bieser & Lea Jean Badelles

Cartoon. (02/16/18)

http://www.quantumvibe.com/strip?page=1759

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59) Why school choice will continue to grow in popularity
Source: Heartland Institute
by Teresa Mull

“Families embrace school choice for many reasons. Our nation is composed of millions of diverse children with various needs, interests, and abilities, and our government school system works about as well as giving all Americans an ibuprofen tablet and expecting it to cure maladies ranging from cancer to diabetes to athlete’s foot. Not only is the one-size-fits-all approach ineffective at teaching students with unique learning methods, it’s also inherently prone to corruption and waste, which hurts you, the hard-working taxpayer. When an institution is handed funding (and lots of it) year after year, as is the case with public schools, it has no reason to strive for improvement or use the money prudently.” [editor’s note: Which is precisely the case against “school choice” that leaves the government in control of the purse strings, and therefore of the standards – TLK] (02/16/18)

http://blog.heartland.org/2018/02/why-school-choice-will-continue-to-grow-in-popularity/

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60) Limited government and a free society, part 2
Source: Future of Freedom Foundation
by Gregory Bresiger

“Unfortunately, the classical-liberal tradition that Carl Schurz represented is almost gone today. The men and women who supported it were consistent opponents of the imperial presidency, no matter the party in power. (Schurz, for example, was a Republican who broke with the Republican Grant administration.) That’s because the single-minded pursuit of power at the expense of historic liberties is the result of the corruption of both major parties in America today. It is a problem that has been going on for generations since presidents from Roosevelt and Truman to both Bushes. At one time or another leaders of both major parties have branded the critics of the imperial presidency ‘isolationists.’” (02/16/18)

https://www.fff.org/explore-freedom/article/limited-government-free-society-part-2/

***** The Sound and the Fury *****

61) Anarcho Agenda, episode 57
Source: Anarcho Agenda

“School shootings, and more troubling news out of Venezuela, coming up on the latest episode of Anarcho Agenda.” [various formats] (02/18/18)

http://anarchoagenda.libsyn.com/anarcho-agenda-ep-57-2018-02-18

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62) Free Talk Live, 02/17/18
Source: Free Talk Live

“Anarchapulco Day Three of Four :: Nanu Berks from Crypto Creates and NanuBerks.com :: Jeffrey Tucker from American Institute for Economic Research :: Dayna Martin from DaynaMartin.com :: Taleed ‘TJ’ Brown from ThatGuyT on YouTube :: Doug Scribner from Airthereum.com and Vaultlogic.com :: Amaury Sechet from BitcoinCash.org :: Nathan Freeman, Anarchapulco Organizer :: HOSTS — Ian, Mark.” [Flash audio or MP3] (02/17/18)

https://www.freetalklive.com/podcast/2018-02-17

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63) The Tom Woods Show, episode 1096
Source: The Tom Woods Show

“Professor Kevin Gutzman is the New York Times bestselling author of numerous books on American history. He’s politically on the right while nevertheless holding much of the ‘conservative movement’ in contempt. His views aren’t boilerplate Rush Limbaugh. Therefore, he’s part of the Tom Woods Tell-Me-Your-Story project. How does someone — a historian, no less — come to adopt views more or less like ours, without getting caught up in the conventional Hillary-or-Mitt spectrum?” [various formats] (02/16/18)

https://tomwoods.com/ep-1096-are-our-choices-really-hillary-or-mitt-how-one-historian-avoided-both/

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64) FIREside Chats, episode 9
Source: Foundation for Individual Rights in Education

“The 10 worst colleges for free speech: 2018.” [Flash video] (10/16/18)

https://www.thefire.org/fireside-chats-09-the-10-worst-colleges-for-free-speech-2018/

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65) Reason Podcast, 02/16/18
Source: Reason

“Reason’s Nick Gillespie spoke with [Students For Liberty] leader Wolf von Lauer about the upcoming conference, what his group hopes to achieve in the coming year, and the top issues for freedom-minded students in the United States and abroad.” [various formats] (02/16/18)

https://reason.com/blog/2018/02/16/wolf-van-lauer-libertycon-sfl

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66) Editor’s Break, episode 61
Source: Everything Voluntary

“Editor’s Break 061 has Skyler giving his commentary on the following topics: what DeFOOing is and whether or not its an ethical practice, why increasing the costs to criminal behavior is a necessary component of keeping society safe, and what ‘archation’ is all about.” [various formats] (02/17/18)

http://everything-voluntary.com/defooing-increasing-costs-crime-archation-17m-editors-break-061

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67) spiked podcast, 02/16/18
Source: spiked

“On this week’s spiked podcast: Frank Furedi on Brexit, anti-Semitism and George Soros, Emily Hill on her new book, Bad Romance, and an extract from the spiked review’s interview with Joan C Williams.” [various formats] (02/16/18)

http://www.spiked-online.com/newsite/article/beware-the-oligarchs/

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68) Free Thoughts Podcast, episode 227
Source: Libertarianism.org

“Bryan Caplan gives us the case against traditional education.” [various formats] (02/16/18)

https://www.libertarianism.org/media/free-thoughts/case-against-education

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69) Foreign Policy Focus, episode 156
Source: Foreign Policy Focus

“On FPF #156, I discuss the peace process in Korea and Afghanistan. On the Scott Horton Show, Peter van Buren explained why there was a reason to be optimistic about the hope for peace in Korea. The Taliban have offered to have peace talks with the US. I also update Syria, Zimbabwe, South Africa, and Iraq.” [various formats] (02/16/18)

http://foreignpolicyfocus.libsyn.com/fpf-156-afghan-and-korean-peace

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70) Felony Friday, episode 111
Source: Lions of Liberty

“On today’s episode of Felony Friday Tray Johns join host John Odermatt. Tray shares what it was like growing up on the south side of Chicago at the height of the crack epidemic, in the late eighties, early nineties. She explains how she came to be sentenced to 13 years in federal prison for 500 dollars worth of drugs.” [various formats] (02/16/18)

http://lionsofliberty.com/2018/02/16/felony-friday-111-13-years-prison-500-worth-drugs/

*****
RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST

Editors:
Thomas L. Knapp
Steve Trinward

Editors Emeritus:
Mary Lou Seymour
R. Lee Wrights
*****