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

Volume XVI, Issue #4,134
Wednesday, December 19th, 2018
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In the News:

1) UK: Ministers meet to step up no-deal Brexit plans
2) Trump regime rolls out new unconstitutional victim disarmament regulation
3) Dow ends higher as investors wait for Fed rate announcement
4) Reporter who broke Steele dossier story says ex-British agent’s claims “likely false”
5) Judge postpones Flynn sentencing
6) Trump signs order to create US Space Command
7) Afghanistan: Election set for April 20 amid Taliban talks with US
8) Ethics complaints against Kavanaugh dismissed
9) NY: Cuomo moves to legalize recreational marijuana within months
10) US Senate passes criminal justice overhaul, handing Trump a win
11) GA: Investigators say homeowner kills man suspected of breaking into his house
12) CBP: Unfinished “illicit” border tunnel discovered
13) Heimatsicherheitsdienst: Congress can’t talk to border thugs about abducted girl’s death
14) France: Regime offers 300-euro bonus to protest-weary police
15) First private [sic] Israeli lunar mission will launch in February
16) Officials: Embattled Trump Foundation forced to shut down after “egregious pattern of illegality”
17) Author Alice Walker criticized for endorsement of controversial writer David Icke
18) Yemen: Ceasefire goes into effect in strategic port city of Hodeidah
19) Rome airport thief swipes $9,000 from fellow passenger’s tray at airport security
20) PA: Pittsburgh pols grandstand on synagogue killing to advance victim disarmament measures
21) Judge notices New York’s ban on nunchucks is unconstitutional
22) Former NASA engineer designs glitter bomb trap to avenge Amazon delivery theft victims
23) Critics of criminal justice bill make final push for changes
24) White House suggests Trump may wuss out on border wall demand
25) Sweden: ISP that protested block order by blocking plaintiff, government agencies now under threat for Net Neutrality violations

Everybody Has An Opinion:

26) Net Neutrality repeal: The Internet apocalypse that never came
27) The strangest loyalty oath you probably never heard of
28) All I want for Christmas is a government shutdown
29) US politicians should stop punishing the Cuban people to win Florida votes
30) Interest due on US national debt starts to explode
31) Follow the (climate change) money
32) “How do you talk to someone who doesn’t believe in climate change?”
33) Brexit Is destroying Britain’s constitution
34) Cyntoia Brown was an “abused, exploited child” and should be freed from prison
35) Where no corn has grown before: Better living through climate change?
36) Clown car of felonies
37) Yemen peace efforts miss a critical factor
38) Call me pisher
39) The law Flynn “violated” should be repealed
40) Lobbyists are feasting in Trump’s swamp
41) In Venezuela, yet another socialist government crushes dissent
42) Growing US support for one state falls on deaf ears
43) Winning the gender wars
44) Cypherpunk godfather Timothy May was lightyears ahead of his time
45) Saving democracy from its own contradictions
46) Jailed by an algorithm
47) Anarchism and the mentally ill
48) Facts rain on Pennsylvania governor’s climate change parade
49) Connection or control? On the new Silk Road, two tales of China compete
50) California companies flee business-hostile state in droves
51) Demolished ACA was demolition from the start
52) The hollowing out of democracy
53) Mass media’s Russia hysteria openly acknowledging power of propaganda
54) Texas v. US lays bare the urgent need for healthcare reform
55) The disgrace of Maria Butina’s prosecution
56) What you need to know about the great IP dispute between the US and China
57) Sweatshops today, decent work tomorrow
58) Democrats, Mueller is not your saviour
59) Florida cops get “stand your ground,” too
60) SNL making fun of Trump is absolutely legal

The Sound and the Fury:

61) Ron Paul Liberty Report, 12/18/18
62) Declare Your Independence with Ernest Hancock, 12/18/18
63) The Great Books, episode 64
64) The Libertarian Angle, 12/18/18
65) Scott Adams Says, 12/18/18
66) Postcards From Somalia, episode 24
67) Humans of Bitcoin, 12/18/18
68) Stossel: Does Silicon Valley Manipulate Users?
69) Liberty Chronicles Podcast, episode 87
70) Kick the Puppy, episode 15
71) Cato Daily Podcast, 12/18/18
72) Free Talk Live, 12/17/18
73) The Tom Woods Show, episode 1306
74) Find out why this generation of college students is not a lost cause
75) Nasser Arrabyee on The Scott Horton Show
76) OmniShambles, episode 4
77) Free Man Beyond the Wall, episode 195
78) Bloggingheads.tv, 12/17/18

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

1) UK: Ministers meet to step up no-deal Brexit plans
Source: Channel News Asia [Singapore]

“British ministers met on Tuesday (Dec 18) to intensify plans for leaving the European Union without a deal — a prospect that is becoming more likely as Prime Minister Theresa May plays for time with just 101 days to go until Brexit. The opposition Labour Party meanwhile faced refusal over its request for a no-confidence motion in May and growing pressure to table a binding vote against the government. May on Monday said the government was preparing for a no-deal Brexit and ‘the cabinet will be discussing the next phase in ensuring we are ready for that scenario.’” (12/18/18)

https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/world/uk-ministers-meet-to-step-up-no-deal-brexit-plans-11042872

—–

2) Trump regime rolls out new unconstitutional victim disarmament regulation
Source: MSN

“The Trump administration rolled out a new federal regulationTuesday officially banning bump-fire stocks. Those who possess the devices, which make it easier to fire rounds from a semi-automatic weapon by harnessing the gun’s recoil to ‘bump’ the trigger faster, will have 90 days to turn in or otherwise destroy them from the date that the final rule is published in the federal register — likely this Friday — according to senior DOJ officials.” [hat tip — David Klaus] [editor’s note: I predict that fewer than one in 50 “bump stock” owners will comply – TLK] (12/18/18)

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/trump-administration-officially-bans-bump-stocks/ar-BBR7ZA2

—–

3) Dow ends higher as investors wait for Fed rate announcement
Source: USA Today

“The battered Dow closed higher but well off its best levels Tuesday, staging a rebound from a two-day drop of more than 1,000 points sparked by worries about the health of the global economy. Wall Street’s focus now shifts to Wednesday’s decision on interest rates from the Federal Reserve, which investors hope will signal a pause in its rate hike plans. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 83 points, or 0.4 percent, to 23,676, after climbing 334 points earlier in the session.” (12/18/18)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2018/12/18/fed-rate-decision-dow/2347045002/

—–

4) Reporter who broke Steele dossier story says ex-British agent’s claims “likely false”
Source: USA Today

“A reporter who was among the first to report on former British intelligence agent Michael Steele’s dossier alleging ties between the Trump campaign and Russian officials, said in an interview some of the dossier’s ‘more sensational allegations’ are ‘likely false.’ Michael Isikoff, the chief investigative correspondent for Yahoo News, said Saturday during an interview on conservative commentator John Ziegler’s ‘Free Speech Broadcasting’ podcast that ‘Steele was clearly onto something’ in his probe into the campaign’s Russian connection but evidence has not surfaced to support some of his specific assertions. Steele was correct to suspect ‘that there was a major Kremlin effort to interfere in our elections, that they were trying to help Trump’s campaign, and that there were multiple contacts between various Russian figures close to the government and various people in the Trump campaign,’ Isikoff said.” (12/18/18)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2018/12/18/steele-dossier-michael-isikoff/2347833002

—–

5) Judge postpones Flynn sentencing
Source: Los Angeles Times

“A federal judge excoriated Michael Flynn, President Trump’s first national security advisor, before postponing his sentencing Tuesday for lying to the FBI. … [U.S. District Judge Emmet G.] Sullivan had earlier offered to postpone the sentencing until after the trial of two of Flynn’s former associates who are charged with working with him on Turkey’s behalf. Flynn has agreed to cooperate with prosecutors. … Some of Flynn’s backers had publicly speculated in recent weeks that Sullivan would adopt their belief that FBI agents had tricked the retired general into lying and would spare Flynn from any punishment. Events turned out dramatically otherwise, as Sullivan asked both Flynn and his attorney to publicly acknowledge that he had lied, that he was aware that lying to the FBI was illegal and that he had pleaded guilty because he was guilty. The judge then proceeded to denounce Flynn’s conduct, both for lying and for acting on Turkey’s behalf without disclosing his action, a separate federal crime.” (12/18/18)

https://www.latimes.com/politics/la-na-pol-flynn-sentence-20181218-story.html

—–

6) Trump signs order to create US Space Command
Source: Defense News

“President Donald Trump launched the Pentagon’s new Space Command on Tuesday, an effort to better organize and advance the military’s vast operations in space that could cost as much as $800 million over the next five years. Trump signed a one-page memorandum Tuesday authorizing the Department of Defense to create the new command. … The new order is separate from the president’s much-touted goal of creating a ‘Space Force’ as an independent armed service branch, but is considered a first step in that direction.” (12/18/18)

https://www.defensenews.com/space/2018/12/18/trump-signs-order-to-create-us-space-command/

—–

7) Afghanistan: Election set for April 20 amid Taliban talks with US
Source: Al Jazeera [Qatar state media]

“Afghanistan’s presidential election will take place next year on April 20 with results due by June, the electoral authority in the conflict-ridden country announced. The 12-day registration of presidential hopefuls will start next week, Gulajan Abdulbadi Sayad, head of the Independent Election Commission, told a news conference in the capital Kabul on Monday. … Afghan Taliban representatives and US officials met in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Monday amid diplomatic moves towards establishing the basis for talks to end the 17-year war in Afghanistan.” (12/18/18)

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/12/afghan-election-set-april-20-taliban-talks-181217151651379.html

—–

8) Ethics complaints against Kavanaugh dismissed
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“A panel of judges has dismissed ethics complaints against new Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. The judges say the complaints must be dismissed because they were filed under a federal law that does not apply to Supreme Court justices. That’s the outcome many ethics experts predicted once Kavanaugh took his Supreme Court seat. The complaints deal with statements Kavanaugh made during his confirmation hearings. They were filed originally with Kavanaugh’s old court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Chief Justice John Roberts took no action on them while Kavanaugh’s nomination was pending, then transferred them to federal judges in Colorado and neighboring states. Roberts received the first three of 15 eventual complaints on Sept. 20, a week before Kavanaugh’s testimony angrily denying sexual assault allegations.” (12/18/18)

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Ethics-complaints-against-Kavanaugh-dismissed-13475573.php

—–

9) NY: Cuomo moves to legalize recreational marijuana within months
Source: New York Times

“Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced that he would push to legalize recreational marijuana next year, a move that could generate more than $1.7 billion in sales annually and put New York in line with several neighboring states. The highly anticipated proposal came in a speech in Manhattan on Monday, in which the governor outlined his agenda for the first 100 days of his third term.” (12/17/18)

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/17/nyregion/marijuana-legalization-cuomo.html

—–

10) US Senate passes criminal justice overhaul, handing Trump a win
Source: The Hill

“The Senate passed a bipartisan criminal justice reform bill on Tuesday night, handing a significant victory to President Trump and senators who lobbied to advance the legislation before the end of the year. Senators voted 87-12 on the legislation, which merges a House-passed prison reform bill aimed at reducing recidivism with a handful of changes to sentencing laws and mandatory minimum prison sentences. Conservative lawmakers had scrambled to make changes to the White House-backed bill ahead of the vote Tuesday night. Twelve Republican senators ended up voting against the measure despite Trump’s support. The bill still needs to clear the House, which starts back in session on Wednesday, before it can go to Trump’s desk for a signature.” (12/18/18)

https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/422001-senate-passes-criminal-justice-bill-handing-trump-a-win

—–

11) GA: Investigators say homeowner kills man suspected of breaking into his house
Source: WSB-TV 2 News

“Atlanta police are investigating a deadly shootout Monday afternoon. According to police, officers were called to Ira Street just before 2 p.m. for reports of a person shot. When police got to the scene, they found two men with gunshot wounds. Once was dead and the other was rushed to Grady Hospital. Homicide detectives said the preliminary investigation indicates the man who was killed was shot in an exchange of gunfire after he tried to break into the other man’s home.” (12/18/18)

https://www.wsbtv.com/news/local/police-homeowner-shoots-kills-suspected-home-invader/890395477

—–

12) CBP: Unfinished “illicit” border tunnel discovered
Source: Fox News

“An illegal, unfinished cross-border tunnel running into the U.S. was uncovered by authorities Monday, Customs and Border Protection announced. The detection was made via a joint effort with Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents and Mexican law enforcement who were conducting a regular ‘bi-national tunnel sweep,’ the agency said in a news release Tuesday. ‘The entry point was found submerged underwater along the international waterway channel constructed below both cities of Nogales,’ CBP said. ‘The tunnel was adjacent to the Port of Nogales, DeConcini Crossing and came to an abrupt stop underneath a parking lot in Nogales, Arizona.’ Structural shoring and digging tools were found inside the roughly 50 foot long ‘illicit’ passageway, suggesting to authorities that the construction was not yet finished, the news release said.” (12/18/18)

https://www.foxnews.com/us/unfinished-illicit-border-tunnel-discovered-cbp-says

—–

13) Heimatsicherheitsdienst: Congress can’t talk to border thugs about abducted girl’s death
Source: Reuters

“U.S. Border Patrol [thugs] who [abducted] a 7-year-old Guatemalan migrant girl who later died in federal custody will not speak with U.S. lawmakers investigating her death, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security said on Monday, citing their union membership. … DHS said the majority of [thugs] involved in the girl’s [abduction] were union members and, as such, their duties did not include speaking to members of Congress. Art Del Cueto, a spokesman for the [thugs’] union, the National Border Patrol Council, said it advised them not to speak to anyone outside DHS about the incident until the [gang] completes its [self-justification rituals].” (12/17/18)

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-immigration-border/us-border-agents-will-not-speak-to-lawmakers-about-girls-death-idUSKBN1OH097

—–

14) France: Regime offers 300-euro bonus to protest-weary police
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“Seeking to soothe police forces demanding improved working conditions, the French government on Tuesday proposed giving 300-euro ($340) bonuses to officers deployed to the aggressive and disruptive protests that started last month. French President Emmanuel Macron committed to the idea of protest duty pay earlier this month. The government’s offer came a day after two police unions announced work slowdowns to protest staffing and other budget issues. It wasn’t clear if the proposed premiums would calm the growing anger in police ranks. Discussions between police union representatives and Interior Ministry officials Tuesday were suspended after three hours and set to resume Wednesday morning, according to the primary unions represented at the meeting.” (12/18/18)

https://www.sfgate.com/news/world/article/French-interior-minister-to-meet-police-union-reps-13473995.php

—–

15) First private [sic] Israeli lunar mission will launch in February
Source: Associated Press

“An Israeli nonprofit on Monday said it has pushed back the launch of what it hopes will be the first private spacecraft to land on the moon until February. Officials from SpaceIL and its project partner, the state-owned Israel Aerospace Industries, announced that the landing craft, dubbed ‘Beresheet,’ or Genesis, will ship in February to Florida. Propelled by a SpaceX Falcon rocket launch, the robotic lander will then commence its months-long voyage to the moon. It had been slated to launch this month.” (12/17/18)

https://apnews.com/af0168ec78cc4144b8c1bd23327ef75a

—–

16) Officials: Embattled Trump Foundation forced to shut down after “egregious pattern of illegality”
Source: ABC News

“President Trump’s embattled charitable foundation has agreed to dissolve itself under judicial supervision as part of a lawsuit brought by New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood. The Trump Foundation had previously sought to dissolve on its own terms but has now signed a stipulation that requires it to do so with monitoring by the court and oversight by the attorney general’s office, which must review and approve disbursements of remaining funds to make sure the recipients are legitimate. … The attorney general’s lawsuit alleged that the president and his three eldest children, who served as members of the foundation’s board, repeatedly used charitable donations for personal, political and business gains, including legal settlements, campaign contributions and even to purchase a portrait of Trump to hang at one of his hotels.” (12/18/18)

https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/embattled-trump-foundation-agrees-dissolve-agreement-york-ag/story?id=59884847

—–

17) Author Alice Walker criticized for endorsement of controversial writer David Icke
Source: Fox News

“‘The Color Purple’ author Alice Walker has been criticized by the Anti-Defamation League after she endorsed a book by conspiracy theorist David Icke in a New York Times interview published Sunday. In an interview for the paper’s ‘By The Book’ column, the 74-year-old Walker said Icke’s 1995 book ‘And the Truth Shall Set You Free’ was one of the volumes on her nightstand. ‘In Icke’s books there is the whole of existence, on this planet and several others, to think about,’ Walker said, calling the book ‘a curious person’s dream come true.’ Icke, 66, is a British author and former professional soccer player who is best known for espousing the theory that Earth is controlled by a race of reptilian creatures who are able to take human form. In ‘And the Truth Shall Set You Free,’ Icke questions whether the Holocaust happened, says the Talmud is ‘among the most appallingly racist documents on the planet,’ and claims that far-right groups in the U.K. are fronts for the Israeli secret service Mossad and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL).” (12/18/18)

https://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/author-alice-walker-criticized-for-endorsement-of-controversial-writer-david-icke

—–

18) Yemen: Ceasefire goes into effect in strategic port city of Hodeidah
Source: CNN

“A ceasefire between Yemen’s warring parties went into effect at midnight Tuesday (4 p.m. ET Monday) in the strategic port city of Hodeidah. The ceasefire was reached last week in Stockholm after a round of UN-sponsored talks — the first direct talks in more than two years between representatives of Yemen’s internationally recognized government, which Saudi Arabia supports, and the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels [sic]. The December 13 agreement stipulated an immediate ceasefire in Hodeidah, a major flashpoint in the country’s war.” [editor’s note: The “internationally recognized government” is a Saudi puppet regime in exile, and the Houthis aren’t “rebels” – TLK] (12/17/18)

https://www.cnn.com/2018/12/17/world/yemen-ceasefire-takes-effect-hodeidah/index.html

—–

19) Rome airport thief swipes $9,000 from fellow passenger’s tray at airport security
Source: USA Today

“Think your belongings are safe at an airport security lane? Think again. A man was arrested after swiping $9,000 in cash from a fellow passenger’s tray at Rome’s Leonardo da Vinci–Fiumicino Airport Friday, according to Fox News and Britain’s Mirror. The Polizia di Stato, one of Italy’s national police forces, confirmed the incident by tweeting out security footage of the thief with details of the incident. ‘Fiumicino airport in line for security … a passenger steals envelopes with money inside, hides … in the bathroom … but is arrested by # PoliziaFrontiera as he gets on the plane,’ the translated tweet reads. ‘The money (was) returned to the owner. (It) was used for medical treatment of a relative.’” (12/18/18)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/flights/2018/12/18/airport-thief-steals-9-000-cash-passengers-tray-security/2349542002

—–

20) PA: Pittsburgh pols grandstand on synagogue killing to advance victim disarmament measures
Source: Raw Story

“The Pittsburgh city council on Tuesday was due to introduce a package of gun-control laws including a ban on assault-style rifles [sic], nearly two months after a gunman shouting anti-Semitic messages killed 11 people in a synagogue. The measure would also ban certain types of ammunition and allow courts to ban gun ownership by people deemed to pose a significant threat of violence. ‘As gun violence escalates across the country, it would be unconscionable for me to stand by and do nothing,’ Councilman Corey O’Connor, one of the legislation’s authors, said in a statement.” (12/18/18)

https://www.rawstory.com/2018/12/pittsburgh-propose-tighter-gun-laws-synagogue-attack/

—–

21) Judge notices New York’s ban on nunchucks is unconstitutional
Source: The Hill

“A federal court has ruled that that a New York state ban on possessing nunchucks is unconstitutional. Judge Pamela Chen issued the ruling about the famous martial arts weapon last Friday in a Brooklyn federal court, according to The Associated Press. … The plaintiff in the case, James Maloney, was charged with possession of nunchucks, two rigid rods connected at one end by a chain or rope, in his home in 2000. Maloney initially filed a complaint in 2003. The AP notes that he was mainly focused on getting that part of the law that bans nunchucks even in private homes overturned. Chen said in her ruling that the court couldn’t just take that part out of the existing law. She ruled that the state law as it pertained to possessing the weapon was in violation of the Second Amendment.” (12/17/18)

https://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/421807-judge-rules-against-new-york-state-ban-on-nunchucks

—–

22) Former NASA engineer designs glitter bomb trap to avenge Amazon delivery theft victims
Source: CNBC

“They say revenge is a dish best served cold. But for Mark Rober, it’s much sweeter served smart, smelly and covered in glitter. The former NASA engineer-turned-YouTube star has received plaudits online after designing a booby trap to avenge all those who’ve fallen victim to a new wave of neighborhood crime: doorstep delivery theft. … Rober connected four phones to a GPS-connected circuit board inside an Apple box. Once removed from a home by a would-be thief, the geo-tracking would alert Rober while also triggering the phones to begin recording and uploading footage to the cloud. Meanwhile, when the box’s lid was lifted, it would set off a can of ‘fart spray’ and a centrifugal motor attached to a cup of glitter, prompting comical responses from the thieves.” (12/18/18)

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/12/18/nasa-engineer-mark-robers-glitter-bomb-traps-amazon-delivery-thieves.html

—–

23) Critics of criminal justice bill make final push for changes
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“Critics of a criminal justice bill backed by President Donald Trump are making a final push to amend the legislation in a way that would likely kill its prospects. The bill gives judges more discretion when sentencing some drug offenders and boosts prisoner rehabilitation efforts. It also reduces the life sentence for some drug offenders with three convictions, or ‘three strikes,’ to 25 years. The Senate turned its attention Tuesday to three amendments from Republican senators Tom Cotton of Arkansas and John Kennedy of Louisiana. One would exclude more prisoners from participating in educational and training programs that allows them to earn credits. Those credits can then be used to gain an earlier release to a halfway house or home confinement to finish out their sentence. Another amendment would require that victims be notified before a prisoner gets that earlier release. The third would require the Bureau of Prisons to track and report the re-arrest rate for each prisoner who gets early release.” (12/18/18)

https://www.sfgate.com/news/crime/article/Critics-of-criminal-justice-bill-make-final-push-13474920.php

—–

24) White House suggests Trump may wuss out on border wall demand
Source: CNBC

“The White House suggested Tuesday that President Donald Trump could back down from his demand for $5 billion to fund his proposed border wall in a year-end spending bill. Trump’s push for the money has threatened a partial government shutdown when funding for seven agencies lapses after midnight Friday. Last week, the president said he would be ‘proud’ to close parts of the government over border security. ‘We have other ways that we can get to that $5 billion that we’ll work with Congress,’ White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told Fox News on Tuesday morning.” (12/18/18)

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/12/18/white-house-suggests-it-will-back-down-on-5-billion-border-wall-demand.html

—–

25) Sweden: ISP that protested block order by blocking plaintiff, government agencies now under threat for Net Neutrality violations
Source: BoingBoing

“Bahnhof is the Swedish free-speech-oriented ISP that was finally forced to block access to Sci-Hub (a site providing principled access to paywalled scientific literature) retaliated against science publishing giant Elsevier and the Swedish Patent and Market Court by blocking access to their sites for Bahnhof customers, redirecting requests to a page explaining why the block was in place. Now, the Swedish Post and Telecom Authority (PTS) has announced that it will investigate Bahnhof for violating Net Neutrality rules, which require that ISPs do not interfere to block users from accessing sites they want to visit (the rules carve out an exemption for blocks like the one Elsevier secured through the Patent and Market Court).” (12/17/18)

https://boingboing.net/2018/12/17/selective-neutrality-rules.html

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

26) Net Neutrality repeal: The Internet apocalypse that never came
Source: Foundation for Economic Education
by Brittany Hunter

“This month marks one year since the FCC repealed the controversial net neutrality rules, officially killing the internet as we knew it forever–or so net neutrality proponents would have liked you to believe. But as we take a closer look at what has actually happened in the year since the rules have been abolished, we find that the (often hysterical) rhetoric doesn’t reflect reality at all. On the contrary, the internet has actually improved since regulations were relaxed.” (12/18/18)

https://fee.org/articles/net-neutrality-repeal-the-internet-apocalypse-that-never-came/

—–

27) The strangest loyalty oath you probably never heard of
Source: Garrison Center
by Thomas L Knapp

“Texas is one of 26 states (with similar legislation pending in 13 others) which requires state contractors to certify that they ‘do not currently boycott Israel’ and ‘will not boycott Israel’ for the duration of the contract. The definition of ‘boycott’ includes ‘refusing to deal with’ or ‘terminating business activities with’ Israel or any ‘person or entity doing business in Israel or in an Israeli-controlled territory.’ The purpose of these requirements is to hinder the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. BDS participants call on Israel to meet its ‘obligations under international law’ by withdrawing from occupied Arab territory and so forth, and back that call by refusing to purchase Israeli goods or do business with Israeli companies. Agree with BDS or not, it’s entirely proper for people who oppose a government’s actions to adhere to their convictions peacefully, by refusing to trade with that government or with businesses operating in that government’s jurisdiction.” (12/18/18)

http://thegarrisoncenter.org/archives/14134

—–

28) All I want for Christmas is a government shutdown
Source: Investor’s Business Daily
by Benjamin Powell

“President Donald Trump is threatening to shut down the government over the Democrats’ refusal to provide funding for a border wall. Pundits on both sides of the isle act as if a shutdown would be a calamity. But, with Christmas just around the corner, a shutdown would be a welcome gift under my tree. In a meeting with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer President Trump demanded $5 billion of funding for a security wall along the U.S.-Mexican border and threatened, ‘If we don’t get what we want, one way or the other … I will shut down the government.’ … Congress is back in session on December 19th and, as of today, will have only two days to pass legislation to avoid the shutdown before Christmas. But what’s the big deal if Congress doesn’t pass the needed legislation? Do you remember the last government shutdown in 2013? Chances are, unless you’re a government employee who was furloughed, you don’t.” (12/17/18)

https://www.investors.com/politics/commentary/shut-down-the-government

—–

29) US politicians should stop punishing the Cuban people to win Florida votes
Source: Cato Institute
by Doug Bandow

“‘Where are you from?,’ asked the 20-something as he passed me on the street in Havana. America, I replied. ‘I love America’ he declared, before turning into one of the city’s many restaurants. He likely was a member of Cuba’s growing private workforce. However, opportunities for young Cubans are too few. State controls continue to stifle the economy. Ironically, among the biggest barriers to reform is President Donald Trump, who seems determined to preserve the fading communist dictatorship. Increased economic ties to the U.S. are the best means for Americans to undermine the regime. Yet the Trump administration partially reversed President Barack Obama’s opening to Cuba.” (12/18/18)

https://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/us-politicians-should-stop-punishing-cuban-people-win-florida-votes

—–

30) Interest due on US national debt starts to explode
Source: Independent Institute
by Craig Eyermann

“This past year is one that will be remembered for many things, but perhaps the one thing for which it may someday be best remembered is that it was the year in which the amount of interest that the U.S. government had to pay on its total public debt outstanding began to break all its previous records.” (12/18/18)

http://blog.independent.org/2018/12/18/interest-due-on-u-s-national-debt-starts-to-explode/

—–

31) Follow the (climate change) money
Source: Town Hall
by Stephen Moore

“The first iron rule of American politics is: Follow the money. This explains, oh, about 80 percent of what goes on in Washington. Shortly after the latest ‘Chicken Little’ climate change report was published last month, I noted on CNN that one reason so many hundreds of scientists are persuaded that the sky is falling is that they are paid handsomely to do so. I said, ‘In America and around the globe governments have created a multibillion dollar climate change industrial complex.’ And then I added: ‘A lot of people are getting really, really rich off of the climate change industry.’ According to a recent report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office, ‘Federal funding for climate change research, technology, international assistance, and adaptation has increased from $2.4 billion in 1993 to $11.6 billion in 2014, with an additional $26.1 billion for climate change programs and activities provided by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in 2009.’” (12/18/18)

https://townhall.com/columnists/stephenmoore/2018/12/18/follow-the-climate-change-money-n2537638

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32) “How do you talk to someone who doesn’t believe in climate change?”
Source: Kent’s “Hooligan Libertarian” Blog
by Kent McManigal

“That was actually the first sentence to an introduction to a TED talk … and it illustrates a big part of the problem with Anthropogenic Global Climate Change (AGCC) fanatics. Their condescending need to preach at the rest of us is annoying, as is their conviction that we could be won over to their side. First of all, climate changes. Very few people seriously doubt that. The Earth has been both a snowball and a sauna in the past. I completely ‘believe in’ the evidence that this has happened and will continue to happen. That’s not what they are talking about when they say ‘doesn’t believe in climate change.’ They are talking about the fact that intelligent, informed people don’t necessarily worship with their cult of AGCC belief and their preferred social agenda, and they can’t bear it.” (12/18/18)

http://blog.kentforliberty.com/2018/12/how-do-you-talk-to-someone-who-doesnt.html

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33) Brexit Is destroying Britain’s constitution
Source: Foreign Policy
by Garvan Walshe

“Lacking a written constitution, Britain has always relied on what we might call ‘alternating majoritarianism’ for political stability. One party gets in and is allowed free rein to do what it wants. The fact that the British public generally has taken a dim view of parties it considered too extreme has generally forced these supposedly all-powerful majority parties away from their members’ views and toward the political center. And under Britain’s first-past-the-post electoral system, centrist third parties face structural hurdles that prevent them from making headway. That system is now broken. It relied on the big Conservative and Labour parties being able to win ‘working majorities’ that limited MPs’ ability to rebel against their party lines. There’s no point in 10 or 15 MPs rebelling when a government has a majority of 50. All it achieves is to damage the rebels’ prospects of promotion. But that system has been fatally undermined from multiple directions.” (12/18/18)

https://foreignpolicy.com/2018/12/18/brexit-is-destroying-britains-constitution/

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34) Cyntoia Brown was an “abused, exploited child” and should be freed from prison
Source: USA Today
by Tim Swarens

“Everything about Cyntoia Brown’s story is tragic. Everything also is complicated. On Aug. 6, 2004, Johnny Allen picked up Brown, a 16-year-old runaway, at a fast food restaurant in Nashville, Tennessee. The 43-year-old real estate agent agreed to pay to use the child for sex. Once they were in bed together at Allen’s house, Brown would later tell authorities, the man reached for what the girl thought was a gun. That’s when she pulled out her own gun. And shot Allen to death. Brown then stole two guns and cash, and drove away in Allen’s truck, but police soon tracked her down. Two years later, a jury convicted Brown, tried as an adult, of murder and aggravated robbery. Now 30, she remains in the Tennessee Prison for Women, serving a life sentence. Yet, Brown’s story neither begins nor ends with those facts alone.” (12/18/18)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2018/12/18/cyntoia-brown-case-clemency-prison-sex-trafficking-survivor-column/2346986002

—–

35) Where no corn has grown before: Better living through climate change?
Source: CounterPunch
by Charles Pierson

“The growing season used to be too short to grow corn in Alberta. That’s no longer true, according to a front page story in the November 26 Wall Street Journal: ‘Warming Climate Pushes Corn North.’ Thanks to climate change, a warming planet means longer growing seasons, making it practical for Canadian farmers to raise corn. … Yet there is a down side. To its credit, the Journal admits that bigger harvests may be harder to sustain as temperatures increase further, and climate shifts already are working against yields in some corn-producing regions …” (12/18/18)

https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/12/18/where-no-corn-has-grown-before-better-living-through-climate-change/

—–

36) Clown car of felonies
Source: Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

“David Krupa, a 19-year-old DePaul University student … gathered over 1,700 voter signatures on petitions to gain a spot on the ballot for alderman of Chicago’s notorious 13th Ward. Why notorious? It’s Boss Madigan’s home. Yes, the ‘Land of Lincoln,’ home to nearly 13 million people, is ruled by one man, Michael J. Madigan, Speaker of the Illinois House, ‘the longest-serving leader of any state or federal legislative body in the history of the United States.’ And 13th Ward Alderman Marty Quinn, the incumbent, is Madigan’s guy. Quickly, a lawsuit was filed challenging Krupa’s petitions and, as Kass explains, ‘A crew of mysterious political workers — perhaps they were Buddhist monks, or the gentle sun people known as the Eloi, or maybe Madigan precinct captains — filed 2,796 petitions of revocation of signature.’ While almost three thousand people executed affidavits stating that they wanted their signatures removed from Krupa’s petition, only 187 actually signed his petition.” (12/18/18)

http://thisiscommonsense.com/2018/12/18/clown-car-of-felonies/

—–

37) Yemen peace efforts miss a critical factor
Source: Reuters
by Jamille Bigio & Rachel Vogelstein

“As Yemen’s warring parties met in Sweden last week, hopes were high that these peace talks (the first since 2016) would spark a political process to end the ongoing conflict that has left the country on the brink of famine and created what the UN calls a ‘living hell for millions of children.’ At the talks’ conclusion, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres announced that the parties had agreed to a number of important and encouraging steps, including a critical ceasefire in the port city of Hodeidah, where most aid enters Yemen. But though the leaders of the Yemeni peace process plan to resume talks in January, they continue to overlook a critical strategy that could increase the likelihood of peace: the inclusion of women.” (12/18/18)

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-bigio-yemen-commentary/commentary-yemen-peace-efforts-miss-a-critical-factor-idUSKBN1OG2IP

—–

38) Call me pisher
Source: Freeman’s Perspective
by Paul Rosenberg

“‘Call me pisher’ is a Yiddish phrase from my youth, and it was used to instruct me in a very important lesson. (Though I hardly realized it at the time.) And since Yiddish speakers were often not particularly delicate persons, I’ll have to be a bit less than delicate today. In Yiddish, pisher properly means pisser, and by implication a pisher is someone who is still pissing their pants as an adult. Obviously, it was a term of denigration, indicating a worthless person. What ‘Call me pisher’ meant in practice, however, was, ‘Go ahead and call me an asshole. I don’t care.’” (12/18/18)

https://www.freemansperspective.com/call-me-pisher/

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39) The law Flynn “violated” should be repealed
Source: The American Spectator
by David Catron

“While much has been written about the entrapment of Michael Flynn by the ethically challenged Andrew McCabe and his accomplice Peter Strzok, little discussion has been devoted to the constitutionally dubious federal law under which he was charged. Most commentators have noted in a cursory fashion that it is a felony to mislead the FBI, and then quickly moved on to the latest machinations of the ridiculous Mueller investigation. But the trap set for Flynn wouldn’t have been possible but for a Stalinesque statute that has been denounced by jurists as ideologically diverse as William Rehnquist and Ruth Bader Ginsburg.” (12/18/18)

https://spectator.org/the-law-flynn-violated-should-be-repealed/

—–

40) Lobbyists are feasting in Trump’s swamp
Source: The New Republic
by Emily Atkin

“Let’s say Washington is a swamp, as Trump calls it. Then lobbyists are the gators, and strong ethics rules are the fence that keeps Americans from getting bit. In President Donald Trump’s swamp, the gators keep getting bigger and the fence is in tatters. On Saturday, Ryan Zinke submitted his resignation as secretary of the Interior Department, the seventh-largest agency responsible for most of the nation’s natural resources and public lands. Zinke will be replaced (at least temporarily) by David Bernhardt, a former high-profile lobbyist for the fossil fuel industry and the Interior’s current second-in-command. As a lobbyist, Bernhardt worked on behalf of several oil companies that he’ll soon be in charge of regulating. He’s been called ‘a walking conflict of interest’ by his critics. Bernhardt’s ascent follows Trump’s announcement last month that a former lobbyist for the coal industry would soon be nominated to lead the Environmental Protection Agency.” (12/18/18)

https://newrepublic.com/article/152724/lobbyists-feasting-trumps-swamp-epa-interior

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41) In Venezuela, yet another socialist government crushes dissent
Source: Reason
by JD Tuccille

“El Nacional, one of the few remaining independent media outlets in Venezuela, ceased print publication last week after the government choked off access to paper. The newspaper earned official ire with its long opposition to socialist strongman, Hugo Chavez, and his successor, Nicolas Maduro, as their rule became increasingly totalitarian. While El Nacional plans to continue to publish online, the end of its print edition is bad news for Venezuelans who value dissenting voices and truthful information. If there’s any silver lining it’s that Venezuela provides a valuable lesson for that rising tide of Americans who think they’ve found a shiny new toy in a system for forcibly organizing society that keeps promising utopia, but instead delivers starvation and brutality through centralized control of the economy.” (12/18/18)

https://reason.com/archives/2018/12/18/venezuelan-government-crushes-dissent

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42) Growing US support for one state falls on deaf ears
Source: Antiwar.com
by Jonathan Cook

“Two years of Donald Trump and Benjamin Netanyahu as a Middle East peacemaking team appear to be having a transformative effect — and in ways that will please neither of them. The American public is now evenly split between those who want a two-state solution and those who prefer a single state, shared by Israelis and Palestinians, according to a survey published last week by the University of Maryland. … But Mr. Netanyahu cannot take comfort from the thought that ordinary Americans share his vision of a single state of Greater Israel. Respondents demand a one-state solution guaranteeing Israelis and Palestinians equal rights.” [editor’s note: Why on Earth should it matter what Americans think about Israel/Palestine? Did one of them become the 51st state while I was asleep? The US should get its nose (and its taxpayer money) out of the situation entirely – TLK] (12/18/18)

https://original.antiwar.com/cook/2018/12/17/growing-us-support-for-one-state-falls-on-deaf-ears/

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43) Winning the gender wars
Source: The American Prospect
by Anna Greenberg

“In the 2018 midterms, the women of this country delivered a severe rebuke to President Donald Trump and the Republican Party. The seeds were planted by the 2017 Women’s March, by many accounts the largest single-day demonstration in American history. Thousands of women subsequently decided to run for office, including the hundreds who ran for the House of Representatives (up from 120 in 2016). A record 126 women will serve in the 116th Congress. Nearly 60 percent of women voted for Democratic candidates, resulting in a historic 23-point gender gap between the parties. It is tempting to argue that this is all about Trump.” (12/18/18)

https://prospect.org/article/winning-gender-wars

—–

44) Cypherpunk godfather Timothy May was lightyears ahead of his time
Source: Bitcoin.com
by Kai Sedgwick

“The crypto world has been mourning the passing of Timothy C. May at the age of 67. While an unknown entity to the general public, to early internet adopters, cypherpunks, libertarians, and cryptography evangelists, May’s writings remain hallowed. The intellectual was an early advocate against state surveillance, privacy erosions, and bete noire of the statist Silicon Valley startups whose tech dystopia has surreptitiously smothered society. May’s legacy lives on through his powerful writings that are as potent today as when they first appeared in the late 80s.” (12/18/18)

https://news.bitcoin.com/cypherpunk-godfather-timothy-may-was-lightyears-ahead-of-his-time/

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45) Saving democracy from its own contradictions
Source: The American Conservative
by Nick Phillips

“Every government shares two aims: to be legitimate and to be good. The problem is that these goals are increasingly at odds. In our present era, the only route to legitimacy is through democracy. Yet good government is impossible without limiting democracy in some way. Conservatives once stood staunchly in favor of these limits, but a small revolution has occurred. Conservatives who once regarded human nature as flawed and sought to restrain it have transformed into populists who fully embrace the anger and desire of the American id.” (12/17/18)

https://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/saving-democracy-from-its-own-contradictions/

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46) Jailed by an algorithm
Source: In These Times
by Nick Muscavage

“One day after being arrested and charged with possession of a weapon in November 2017, Brandon Darby, 51, was ushered into a room with three small cubicles, each with its own small television screen. A judge, communicating virtually through the screen, read Darby his charges and told him his score from New Jersey’s new risk-assessment algorithm. On a scale of one to six (six being the highest), Darby was labeled a four for risk of failing to appear in court and a five for risk of reoffending. Based on those, he was ordered held without bail until trial. … The algorithm, created by the Laura and John Arnold Foundation, considers a defendant’s past criminal convictions, past failures to appear in court and current charges of violence, among other factors.” (12/18/18)

http://inthesetimes.com/article/21597/jailed-by-an-algorithm-money-bail-racism-sentencing-bias-civil-rights

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47) Anarchism and the mentally ill
Source: exile in happy valley
by comrade hermit

“Like many of my posts, I’m writing this piece from the clerical unit of my local psych rehab. There are all kinds of people here around me; black, white, old, young. But the one thing we all have in common, the one thing that brings us all together here, is that, for lack of a better word, we’re all fucking nuts. Schizophrenia, bipolar, a vast rainbow across the autism spectrum, I personally enjoy a zesty melange of depression, social anxiety, gender dysphoria, and agoraphobia that have plagued me for most of my life and my family for generations. We come here for a lot of reasons, for work, for recovery, but mostly we come here to belong. Because it’s the one place where we can be who we are without fear of being censured by a society that has deemed us defective.” (12/17/18)

https://exileinhappyvalley.blogspot.com/2018/12/anarchism-and-mentally-ill.html

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48) Facts rain on Pennsylvania governor’s climate change parade
Source: Heartland Institute
by Gregory Wrightstone

“When Pennsylvania Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf uses the past year’s wet weather and local flooding to support his assertion that ‘we have a problem with climate change,’ we can’t help but rain on his parade. The governor’s comments came in reference to a petition to limit greenhouse gases that had been submitted to the Pennsylvania Environmental Quality Board by 61 parties, including environmental advocacy groups and solar energy firms.” (12/17/18)

http://blog.heartland.org/2018/12/facts-rain-on-pennsylvania-governors-climate-change-parade/

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49) Connection or control? On the new Silk Road, two tales of China compete
Source: Christian Science Monitor
by Ann Scott Tyson

“The Pakistani businessman braved the rugged Karakoram Highway, crossed the freezing Khunjerab Pass, and spent an hour undergoing security at China’s border to reach the city of Kashgar, in the frontier region of Xinjiang. Eager to promote his adventure tourism company, the young entrepreneur set out in October in hopes of finding a travel agency to partner with. Instead, he ran up against China’s paramilitary surveillance state and its anti-Muslim policies. It began with a simple transaction: trading US dollars for Chinese yuan. He passed through one of Kashgar’s ubiquitous airport-style security checks, entered a Bank of China branch, and waited to see a teller. ‘I went to the window at my turn, but when they saw my first name was Mohammad, they refused to change the money,’ he says, asking that his last name be withheld.” (12/18/18)

https://www.csmonitor.com/World/Asia-Pacific/2018/1218/Connection-or-control-On-the-new-Silk-Road-two-tales-of-China-compete

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50) California companies flee business-hostile state in droves
Source: Investor’s Business Daily
by staff

“California’s business environment has gone from bad to worse, with thousands of businesses pulling up stakes and moving elsewhere. But don’t take our word for it. Just ask the 1,800 companies that either relocated or ‘disinvested’ in the formerly Golden State in 2016. A new report from business-relocation expert Joe Vranich says that the business climate has gotten so bad that, for the first time ever, he is actively telling clients ‘to leave the business-hostile state because its business climate continues to worsen.’ And, no, he isn’t a hypocrite. He’s followed his own advice. Earlier this year he relocated his own successful consulting business from Irvine, California to Cranberry Township, Pa., a suburb of Pittsburgh. Maybe that shouldn’t come as a surprise. It’s not exactly news that California’s legislature is the most left-wing, high-tax and business-unfriendly in the nation. California is a virtual one-party state. Lawmakers and regulators recently even tried to tax cellphone texts, but pushback from voters made them drop the plan just this week.” (12/18/18)

https://www.investors.com/politics/editorials/california-companies-leave-taxes

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51) Demolished ACA was demolition from the start
Source: Independent Institute
by K Lloyd Billingsley

“Days before the 2008 election, Obama claimed to be ‘fundamentally transforming’ the nation, which was already a top-heavy welfare state from the days of the LBJ’s Great Society, and before that FDR’s New Deal. So the president had something else in mind. Under his ACA, you don’t get the health care you want, only the health care the government wants you to have. Contrary to what the president claimed, you couldn’t keep your doctor or your plan, and the rates were going to skyrocket. The ACA was a disaster from the start but its demolition of choice gave the president’s designated successor, Hillary Clinton, grounds to push for a ‘single-payer’ health system, a euphemism for government monopoly health care.” (12/17/18)

http://blog.independent.org/2018/12/17/demolished-aca-was-demolition-from-the-start/

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52) The hollowing out of democracy
Source: Cato Unbound
by Henry Farrell

“Stephen Davies suggests that our apparent situation of chaos is neither new, nor, for that matter, nearly as chaotic as it seems at first sight. Instead of being a potential breakdown in democracy, it’s an issue realignment within democracy, where the old divisions that political parties and voters organize themselves around are giving way to new ones. We are bidding goodbye to a world where the big fights were over how much the government should intervene in the economy, and ushering in a ‘new and stable political alignment’ where politics will be fought out between populist ‘national collectivists’ on the one side and either cosmopolitan liberalism (who will prevail as the opposition in many countries) or the far left (who will prevail as the opposition in a few).” (12/17/18)

https://www.cato-unbound.org/2018/12/17/henry-farrell/hollowing-out-democracy

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53) Mass media’s Russia hysteria openly acknowledging power of propaganda
Source: Caitlin Johnstone Blog
by Caitlin Johnstone

“‘So now the question becomes: how did Russia know to target African American voters, and especially in certain key states,’ asked popular #Resistance pundit Amy Siskind in response to a New York Times article claiming Russian social media trolls targeted Sanders supporters and Black voters during the 2016 election. ‘I think we’ll get our answers in the coming months from the Mueller probe,’ Siskind speculated. Well that’s a mighty good question there, Amy, and I think the answer is pretty obvious. Clearly Russia knew to target African American voters because Donald Trump called his boss Vladimir Putin and told him about America’s secret racial issues, which nobody in any foreign country could ever know about on their own. Then it was a simple matter of sending the trolls of St Petersburg’s Internet Research Agency to trick Black people into thinking that the American political system hasn’t been working for them, thereby ensuring the defeat of the rightful heir to the presidential throne, Hillary Rodham Clinton. … Or, alternate theory: everything about your question is immensely stupid.” (12/18/18)

https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2018/12/18/mass-medias-russia-hysteria-is-openly-acknowledging-the-power-of-propaganda

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54) Texas v. US lays bare the urgent need for healthcare reform
Source: Niskanen Center
by Ed Dolan

“Last Friday, Judge Reed O’Connor of the Federal District Court in Fort Worth issued a summary judgement in a lawsuit known as Texas v. United States. Appeals are expected, but if the ruling stands, it could strike down the ACA in its entirety and end healthcare coverage of millions of Americans who get insurance through the ACA exchanges or Medicare expansion. Texas v. U.S. lays bare the flaws of the ACA. Yes, the ACA has made healthcare accessible and affordable for many who would otherwise fall through the cracks, but it is a legislative, administrative, and economic kludge. From the beginning, it has been at risk of collapsing from its own complexity. The new ruling shows more dramatically than ever why we need real healthcare reform.” (12/17/18)

https://niskanencenter.org/blog/texas-court-lays-bare-the-urgent-need-for-healthcare-reform-aca/

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55) The disgrace of Maria Butina’s prosecution
Source: Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G Hornberger

“Some anti-Russianites and Trump critics are saying that the guilty plea by 30-year-old Russian citizen Maria Butina confirms that the Russian government was meddling in the 2016 presidential election. It’s true that Russia might well have been helping Donald Trump, who was committed to establishing friendly relations with Russia, defeat Hillary Clinton, who was committed to maintaining a relationship of anger, animosity, and hatred toward Russia. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that Butina’s guilty plea to agreeing to fail to register as a foreign agent establishes that she was knowingly part of a conspiracy within the Russian government to meddle in the presidential election. Anyone who believes that has a genuinely naive and innocent way of viewing the federal criminal justice system, which is akin to how sausage and congressional laws are made, which many people would rather not see or know about.” (12/18/18)

https://www.fff.org/2018/12/18/the-disgrace-of-maria-butinas-prosecution/

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56) What you need to know about the great IP dispute between the US and China
Source: American Institute for Economic Research
by Jeffrey A Tucker

“Intellectual property (IP) is notoriously difficult to enforce in a single country. Trying to enforce one country’s IP laws in another country is nearly impossible. This is the hard reality behind the ongoing dispute between the United States and Chinese trade negotiators. For China to enter into full compliance based on US standards — even if that were possible — would require the government to vastly expand and increase its police power over its own domestic economy, which is exactly the opposite direction that the Chinese government wants to go.” (12/17/18)

https://www.aier.org/article/what-you-need-know-about-great-ip-dispute-between-us-and-china

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57) Sweatshops today, decent work tomorrow
Source: Ludwig von Mises Institute
by Nikhil Sridhar

“At first glance, sweatshop labor seems directly in contradiction to the United Nations’ goal of ‘decent work,’ which is loosely characterized by the ILO as work embracing ‘dignity,’ ‘equality,’ a ‘fair income’ and ‘safe working conditions.’ What the UN fails to acknowledge, however, is that to achieve the widespread acceptance of the decent work agenda, you must first have work, and sweatshops are a rung on the ladder to achieving safer and better paying jobs in an economy of higher wealth and living standards.” (12/18/18)

https://mises.org/wire/sweatshops-today-decent-work-tomorrow

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58) Democrats, Mueller is not your saviour
Source: spiked
by Luke Gittos

“The obsession with Mueller needs to stop. His investigation has failed, so far, to yield any evidence of collusion between Trump and the Russian state. Instead, it has unearthed sordid revelations about Trump’s staff and affairs that remain of little interest to voters. There may well be more to come. But Trump’s detractors need to stop treating Mueller as a silver bullet. They need to work out how to defeat Trump at the ballot box.” (12/17/18)

https://www.spiked-online.com/2018/12/17/democrats-mueller-is-not-your-saviour/

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59) Florida cops get “stand your ground,” too
Source: The Zelman Partisans
by Carl Bussjaeger

“The Florida Supreme Court has ruled that ‘Stand Your Ground’ (SYG) self-defense protections extend to police officers, as well as civilians. I’m going to make two points about this. 1. DUH! Police officers are persons, too. Of course they’re entitled to the same rights as any other person. That’s a no-brainer. 2. This police shooting was not a SYG situation.” (12/18/18)

http://zelmanpartisans.com/?p=5702

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60) SNL making fun of Trump is absolutely legal
Source: National Review
by Katherine Timpf

“If you’re a huge Trump supporter, I could totally understand how the constant bashing of your favorite president might get to you. I could totally understand that you might share Trump’s frustration. But still, no matter how much you support him or his agenda, you should not support tweets like this one if our country’s freedoms mean anything to you. See, in other countries, the sorts of things that they do on SNL absolutely are illegal. In some countries, you can’t make fun of people in power whatsoever. One of the most beautiful things about this country is that you can do that.” (12/17/18)

https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/12/trump-saturday-night-live-censorship-controversy/

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

61) Ron Paul Liberty Report, 12/18/18
Source: Ron Paul Liberty Report

“The talk in Washington — again — is of a ‘government shutdown.’ We are supposed to fear such a shutdown so much we will turn a blind eye to anything the duopoly does to avoid it. But what if it’s all just a big farce?” [Flash video] (12/18/18)

http://www.ronpaullibertyreport.com/archives/playing-the-blame-game-the-political-farce-of-the-government-shutdown

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62) Declare Your Independence with Ernest Hancock, 12/18/18
Source: Freedom’s Phoenix

“Gerald Celente (American Trend Forecaster, Publisher of Trends Journal, Business Consultant, Author) on market conditions; what’s up for 2019 — Tim Picciott (Crypto Self Direct; The Liberty Advisor) does The Economic Report.” [MP3] (12/18/18)

https://www.freedomsphoenix.com/Media/253171-2018-12-18-12-18-18-gerald-celente-tim-picciott-video-mp3s-loaded.htm

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63) The Great Books, episode 64
Source: National Review

“John J. Miller is joined by Otto Penzler to discuss Arthur Conan Doyle’s A Study in Scarlet.” [various formats] (12/18/18)

https://www.nationalreview.com/podcasts/the-great-books/episode-64-a-study-in-scarlet-by-arthur-conan-doyle/

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64) The Libertarian Angle, 12/18/18
Source: Future of Freedom Foundation

“What does shutting down the government mean, if anything? Not much. Jacob Hornberger and Richard Ebeling discuss.” [various formats] (12/18/18)

https://www.fff.org/explore-freedom/article/the-libertarian-angle-the-joke-of-shutting-down-the-government/

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65) Scott Adams Says, 12/18/18
Source: Scott Adams Says

“Scott Adams talks about CNN creating news out of nothing. With coffee.” [Flash video] (12/18/18)

https://www.periscope.tv/ScottAdamsSays/1MYGNyNjrzNKw

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66) Postcards From Somalia, episode 24
Source: The Launch Pad Media

“On this episode Sherry and Alan discuss the Yellow Vest Revolution.” [Flash audio or MP3] (12/18/18)

https://jrlp.podbean.com/e/postcards-from-somalia-episode-24-viva-la-more-government-revolution/

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67) Humans of Bitcoin, 12/18/18
Source: Bitcoin.com

“Making a million dollars a day in 2013 mining in China, Marshall [Long] somehow manages to maintain a low profile. If you want to build a mining empire, this is who you call.” [various formats] (12/18/18)

https://podcast.bitcoin.com/e619-The-Mining-Prince-Better-Call-Marshall

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68) Stossel: Does Silicon Valley Manipulate Users?
Source: Reason

“Leaked emails show some Google engineers blaming their company for Trump’s 2016 win, suggesting that the site should censor outlets like The Daily Caller and Breitbart. Google says the company never did that, but for many people, it raises the question: could Google executives flip an election? ‘Google’s senior management was heavily in favor of Hillary Clinton,’ The Creepy Line writer Peter Schweizer tells John Stossel. ‘Their ability to manipulate the algorithm is something that they’ve demonstrated the ability to do in the past … and the evidence from academics who monitored 2016 was clearly that they did.’ Schweizer’s film features psychologist Robert Epstein, whose research claimed that people rated Google’s top search results in 2016 as more positive to Hilary Clinton than to Donald Trump.” [Flash video] (12/18/18)

https://reason.com/reasontv/2018/12/18/stossel-does-silicon-valley-manipulate

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69) Liberty Chronicles Podcast, episode 87
Source: Libertarianism.org

“What is the real origin story of America?” [various formats] (12/18/18)

https://www.libertarianism.org/podcasts/liberty-chronicles/america-was-founded-runaways-renegades-part-2

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70) Kick the Puppy, episode 15
Source: Attack The System

“Senate votes to end support for Saudi war on Yemen/passes resolution condemning Saudis for Khashoggi murder, Saudi Arabia still sells castrated black slaves, Trump’s legal woes worsen, Trump says ‘the people would revolt’ if he were impeached, Utah reduces DUI limit to .05, Tommy Chong on Canada’s weed legalization and underground market, California considers a tax on texting, feminists think sexist men are sexier than ‘woke’ men, the new generation of Unabomber acolytes, Charles Manson and the white cult, Antifa VS Anonymous, left-right gen pop anxiety, Taylor Swift tracked stalkers with facial recognition at her concert, the Kardashians, 20 men brought up on gun charges stemming from Houston rappers music video, country pop music, ‘racist’ Gandhi statue removed from University of Ghana, anarchists helped Californian fire refugees in a Walmart parking lot where people were already living, Walmarts are the new mining camps, technocrats are the new robber barons, mass democracy.” [Flash audio or MP3] (12/18/18)

https://attackthesystem.com/2018/12/18/episode-15/

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71) Cato Daily Podcast, 12/18/18
Source: Cato Institute

“As home-based businesses grow, regulators should try to get out of the way. Christina Sandefur of the Goldwater Institute comments.” [various formats] (12/18/18)

https://www.cato.org/multimedia/cato-daily-podcast/home-based-businesses-long-arm-law

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72) Free Talk Live, 12/17/18
Source: Free Talk Live

“Heating Oil Freezing :: Asset Forfeiture Ending? :: Shooting Cops vs Crowds Stopping Cops :: Libertarian Party Presidential Picks :: E-Sports vs Real Sports :: Amazon Boycott? :: No-Hitter :: Buycott :: HOSTS — Ian, Mark, Melanie.” [Flash audio or MP3] (12/17/18)

https://www.freetalklive.com/podcast/2018-12-17

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73) The Tom Woods Show, episode 1306
Source: The Tom Woods Show

“For lots of people the stock market seems hopelessly complicated, and people who discuss it seem to employ a strange lingo outsiders can never master. So today we answered a bunch of questions submitted by my Supporting Listeners. Guests today: Gene Epstein, formerly of Barron’s and now director of the Soho Forum, and Alex Merced, vice chair of the Libertarian Party and a ten-year veteran of Wall Street.” [various formats] (12/17/18)

http://tomwoods.com/ep-1306-the-stock-market-demystified/

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74) Find out why this generation of college students is not a lost cause
Source: Foundation for Individual Rights in Education

“Ongoing campus controversies and disheartening survey findings about college students over the past couple of years have some citizens asking if this generation of students is simply a lost cause. For FIRE, the answer is a resounding no. We will not give up until we reach these students with our message about the importance of free speech on campus and beyond.” [Flash video] (12/17/18)

https://www.thefire.org/find-out-why-this-generation-of-college-students-is-not-a-lost-cause-video/

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75) Nasser Arrabyee on The Scott Horton Show
Source: Libertarian Institute

“Nasser Arrabyee gives the latest on the war in Yemen, following the recent peace talks in Sweden where the UN negotiated a ceasefire in Hodeidah.” [various formats] (12/17/18)

https://libertarianinstitute.org/scotthortonshow/12-17-18-nasser-arrabyee-on-the-ceasefire-in-hodeidah/

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76) OmniShambles, episode 4
Source: The Daily Beast

“On this week’s episode of Omnishambles, host Sam Stein welcomes The Daily Beast’s White House and Trumpworld reporting duo Lachlan Markay and Asawin Suebsaeng. The topic of outrage and fascination for this week is President Donald Trump’s lead attorney for the Russia probe, Rudy Giuliani, the former New York mayor who refers to Suebsaeng as ‘Mr. Swin.’” [Flash audio] (12/17/18)

https://www.thedailybeast.com/rudys-quest-to-confuse-us-into-submission

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77) Free Man Beyond the Wall, episode 195
Source: Free Man Beyond the Wall

“A Patreon Only ‘Ask Me Anything’ w/ Richard Grove.” [various formats] (12/17/18)

http://freemanbeyondthewall.libsyn.com/episode-195-a-patreon-only-ask-me-anything-w-richard-grove

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78) Bloggingheads.tv, 12/17/18
Source: Bloggingheads.tv

Robert Wright (Bloggingheads.tv, The Evolution of God, Nonzero, Why Buddhism Is True) and Ivo Daalder (Chicago Council on Global Affairs) … Ivo’s new book, The Empty Throne … Trump’s foreign policy: zero-sum and transactional … What is NATO for these days, anyway? … The hubris of Clinton and Bush vs. the caution of Obama … Bob: It’s not like the US was playing by the rules pre-Trump … Did the US go beyond the UN mandate in Libya? … Did Syria lead to Trump? … The wrong way to deal with China’s rise.” [Flash video] (12/17/18)

https://bloggingheads.tv/videos/54276

*****
RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST

Editors:
Thomas L. Knapp
Steve Trinward

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