Appeals Court Declines to Reinstate Trump Travel Ban; Mike Pence to Head Voter Fraud Commission; Tom Brady, Patriots Win Fifth Super Bowl: A.M. Links


  • Keith Allison/flickr

    President Trump says he'll attend a NATO summit in Brussels scheduled for May. Trump's travel ban, which the Ninth Circuit Court declined to reinstate, could start making its way up to the Supreme Court as early as today. Vice President Mike Pence will lead a commission on voter fraud.

  • A magistrate judge in Pennsylvania ruled Google must hand over data it holds on foreign servers to the FBI.
  • The governor of Connecticut wants the New York Islanders to move to Hartford.
  • Queen Elizabeth II celebrates 65 years on the throne.
  • The Patriots won the Super Bowl, earning Tom Brady a record-breaking fifth championship ring.
  • "Did you catch these hidden messages in Lady Gaga's half-time performance?"

NEXT: Despite the TRO, the Legal Arguments Against Trump's Immigration Order Are Iffy

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  1. The Patriots won the Super Bowl, earning Tom Brady a record-breaking fifth championship ring.

    Take it away unless Brady denounces Trump!

    1. Hello.


    2. I haven't seen a lead blown that badly since Hillary in November '16

      1. People who rooted against the Patriots based solely upon their political aversion to Trump were served up another delicious dish of disappointment to wash down with their tears.

        1. What about those of us who cheered for the Falcons because we despise the state of Massachusetts in every way, shape, and form?

          1. Why do you hate legalised MJ and buttsecks?

          2. Yeah, I hated the Pats before it was cool, also.

            1. I have always hated Brady (Went to TSUN, and oh boy do they claim a guy that only ever played part time for them now that he hit the big time), and the Patriots, since to me, their crimes against the integrity of football are as bad as Pete Rose's against Baseball, and one of their treatments is not like the other.

              1. The only integrity lost in the NFL is that of the Commish. (If he ever had any)

                Your tears are delicious, by the way, keep them coming.

          3. Lifelong Saints fan here. I cheered against the Falcons, which isn't quite the same thing as being for the Patriots.

        2. That is one silver lining to a Patriots win.

        3. ...also those of us who rooted against the Patriots solely upon our dislike of the Patriots.

    3. The Super Bowl result is definitive proof that there is no higher power, or that if there is, it hates us immensely.

      1. Says the Eagles fan.

        1. Says this former Falcons fan.....

        2. Being an Eagles fan myself is why I can't ever root for the Patriots, remembering well the 2005 Spygate Scandal they got caught in (and went unpunished from) against my beloved Birds. Watching the fleet of drones in the halftime show last night, I joked "looks like Belichek's upped his surveillance technology," then joked about it again when the Pats suddenly went from having pratfalls in the first half to Minority Reporting all the Falcons' plays in the second and making that historic recovery!

      2. No, it is proof that people need to learn when to run the damn ball.

      3. God is a patriots fan and everyone who hates the Patriots is going to hell.

        As someone who lives in Patriots country, I don't know who is more annoying, Patriots fans or Patriots haters.

      4. The Super Bowl result is definitive proof that there is no higher power, or that if there is, it hates us immensely.

        Buy new and improved Tide Pods to cleanse you of your sins before they become trending!

  2. "Did you catch these hidden messages in Lady Gaga's half-time performance?"

    Or even the performance itself?

    1. Isn't Lady Gaga past her sell-by date?

      1. She was past it before I had even heard of her.

      2. No, just her meat dress is.

    2. The song is popular at protests because it sort of is a protest song.

      And -- it sort of is popular,

      1. We used to sing it in music class in the second grade. I'm pretty sure that was the last time I'd thought about the song until now.

        1. Heh. You alluded to "Woody".

    3. LOL. There was like 2 'hidden messages' and one of those was a song that would be included in any Gaga montage. Brilliant reporting USA Today

      1. Apparently overtly singing songs about inclusion is a hidden message. Also, I hear she is getting in trouble with people of a certain persuasion because she wasn't political enough. Everything for the team, everything within the team, nothing without the team.

    4. "Did you catch these hidden messages in Lady Gaga's half-time performance?"

      Like hundreds of drones keeping an eye on things?

      1. Brilliant. That's much better than the USA Today list.

        The most obvious message was "I'm a big Bowie fan" That outfit and hair was clearly inspired by Ziggy Stardust.

    5. I kept looking for Zombie Left Shark and was disappointed!

  3. Queen Elizabeth II celebrates 65 years on the throne.

    Prune juice.

    1. No, it's just the British plumbing.

    2. Reminds me of my CK 2 games where a long lived character screws over several generations

      1. One of the benefits of Elective Succession actually.

    3. "If I die, Charles gets the throne."

      Lives another decade through pure spite.

  4. A magistrate judge in Pennsylvania ruled Google must hand over data it holds on foreign servers to the FBI.

    Nice try, Flyers, but you're not getting any dirt on Malkin.

    1. Screw him, he wrote that defense of internment book.

  5. 285) (Part I of III) Eric Trump's business trip to Uruguay cost taxpayers $97,830 in hotel bills

    This article appeared on the front page of the Washington Post on Saturday. While the Washington Post is obviously a left-leaning newspaper, my sense was that until recently, it eschewed the most naked and obvious types of partisanship. That era seems to be over. In fact, I would characterize this article as a hit piece. Let's break it down.

    1. (Part II of III) A) Misleading headline: The headline makes it sound like Eric Trump used public funds to pay for his hotel room on a business trip. Not so; the money figure in the headline in fact refers to the cost of the Secret Service agents for the trip.

      B) Article implies special treatment: Secret Service protection for family members of the president is national policy, not something special for the Trumps. It may be because of their business travel, the costs for protecting the Trumps will be higher than for other presidential families, but this is not a special perk only they would get.

    2. (Part III of III) C) Unfair implication of corruption: I count three quotes by academics or former Obama advisers in the article claiming this trip is evidence of corruption. One example: "'[The president] is now sending his emissaries, his sons, out to line his own pockets, and he's subsidizing that activity with taxpayer dollars,' said Norm Eisen, a former Obama administration ethics adviser." This is ludicrous. Trump's sons are running his business. I like the way running a business to earn profits is an example of "lining his pockets" rather than the whole point of free enterprise.

      D) Difference in Obama/ Trump family coverage: I never, not once, remember an article in the WaPo detailing the Secret Service costs for the numerous foreign trips taken by Michelle Obama and their daughters. Just to be sure, I did a cursory check of the WaPo archives and didn't come up with anything (although there sure were plenty of semi-fawning articles about the Obamas' annual trip to Martha's Vineyard). I suppose a more thorough check might come up with something. Maybe something for Weigel to check out, if he has room in his busy schedule?

      1. Wingnut News was obsessed with Michelle Obama's trips though. Straight news is adjusting to the market.

        1. Except, he who engages in tu quoque, The Washington Post is supposed to be one of those objective papers with real journalists seeking out truth.

          1. Why? Bitter Clingers called them the "Compost" 15 years ago when they employed conservatives George Will and Robert Novak as primary voices.

            To the right news is a partisan effort.

            1. "Primary voices"

              1. Is there a Schoolhouse Rock song about editorial pages to which we can direct the ignoramus?

            2. Eric Trump's business trip to Uruguay cost taxpayers $97,830 in hotel bills

              "Malia Obama's idyllic vacation to Sundance Film Festival cost taxpayers $97,830 in hotel bills."

              Never saw that spin-cycle applied to any Obama.

              1. "Malia Obama's idyllic vacation to Sundance Film Festival cost taxpayers $97,830 in hotel bills."

                Never saw that spin-cycle applied to any Obama.

                That's because an Obama wouldn't be caught dead taking a trip that cost less than a million taxpayer dollars. What do you think they are? Peasants?

          2. It's weird that after years, tu quoque is still his trademark fallacy. Dude doesn't change.

        2. As always, your constant childish names that you think are oh-so-clever clearly elevate the level of your discourse.

        3. Wingnut News was obsessed with Michelle Obama's trips though.

          While you, a textbook libertarian, had no problem with the number of vacations she took on the taxpayer's dime.

        4. Turd defends Obo!

        5. Go away, Blue Mikey.

      2. The US political establishment has a religious aversion to commerce.

        Odd for a 'capitalist' country, don't ya think?

        1. We were set up to be a mercantilism country. That's how the Constitution was designed. Unfortunately for the FedGov in its early years, there was a cast frontier to which people could escape, an element that limited the rapid expansion of government power. Once the frontier closed, the size and power of the FedGov could grow with little to stop it, other than "tradition".

          1. Not really. Some of the best early political writing on the multiplicative effects of commerce (vs markets existing as a zero sum entity, as in mercantilism) are by Benjamin Franklin and James Madison.

        2. The US political establishment has a religious aversion to commerce.

          Odd for a 'capitalist' country, don't ya think?

          Gotta stay away from all that cash, with it's cocaine and stripper stank, comrade!

      3. Maybe reporting this stuff will help in the long run. WE know our government is really expensive but most people can't relate to the numbers. However, most people can look at a $100,000.00 hotel bill and have a what the fuck moment.

        /wishful thinking.

        1. Nah. The reason I have difficulty taking any of the criticism of Trump and his policies seriously (aside from the fact that most of it is histrionic pants-shitting) is that we've seen from how they dealt with the Bush-to-Obama transition that they are not actually concerned with what is being done so much as with who is doing it.

          Look at the situation with Yemen last week. Part of me is heartened to see the increase in coverage over our illegal military actions there, but Barry was in doing worse for eight years and we heard nary a peep. I don't believe these arguments are in good faith and, should they somehow succeed in getting Trump booted and replaced with a Democrat, they won't hold the new President's feet to the fire to change policy, they'll just stop talking about it.

          1. And in regards to Yemen, that was an Obama raid whose execution date happened to be early in Trump's term.

      4. I am looking forward to the WaPo reporting when Melania's mother moves into the white house and half of Michelle's garden is turned into a hog pen, and the other half used to grow root vegetables.

        1. On the plus side, she won't need secret service protection since she has the power of the evil eye.

    3. WaPo is the town paper in a town with one major industry - government. The current administration seems bent on upsetting the apple cart, and the locals are not liking it none too much.

    4. Yeah, I remember growing up my grandfather referring to the Post as "that liberal rag", and it's been that way all my life. There was a hope that when Bezos bought it he'd turn it around a little, at least move it closer to the middle, but that doesn't seem to have happened. If anything, he's emphasized the analytics/marketing angle to appeal to the readership, so now it's even further left than before. And notably lacking in journalistic integrity.

      1. Bezos bought the best Beltway-insider lobbying, gossip, and influence peddling firm in D.C. Handy thing to have for a dissonant Democrat would-be retail monopolist employing legions of poorly paid un-unionized warehouse drones.

        And Jeff's lobbying firm is completely unaccountable to any of the IRS/FEC regulations regarding lobbyists, favors, etc. It even almost pays for itself.

    5. The coverage of this and not of Obamas doing the same thing and the implication of corruption are unfair.

      But I do think it's a terrible thing that taxpayer pay for all this shit. Outside of things that are absolutely required for the duties of the office, they should pay for their own security. I'm sure he could have accomplished what he needed to do on this trip over the phone or by teleconference.

      If I were in charge, the president wouldn't be allowed to leave the White House unless absolutely necessary. There is really no need for the president to travel at all. Almost all presidential travel is just vanity or politicking anyway.

      1. I don't agree. A hypothetical person making $400k salary as POTUS would never be able to take a vacation or even go shopping. Why should the family be held prisoner?

  6. The governor of Connecticut wants the New York Islanders to move to Hartford.

    Whale of an idea.

    1. Yeah, hopefully they'll change their name, since "Islanders" would make no sense there. Which brings up a question? Why don't NBA teams every change their names when they move? Utah Jazz? Los Angeles Lakers? Memphis Grizzlies? These names are ridiculous outside their original city contexts.

      1. They'd have to change the name to the Whalers. No choice.

        1. I don't think the environmentalists would be happy with that name.

          1. If you think the environmentalists are pissed, just wait until the campus feminist response when the Nantucketmen chase down Trigglypuff and harpoon her.

            1. Chase? she wore herself out waving her arms in the air, how fast do you think she can even move?

              1. Hey, I didn't say she's get far.

          2. Lest we forget, original New England Whalers logo had an actual honest-to-god HARPOON!!!

      2. If Green Bay loses a team, I hope they move to SF.

        1. "Mind if I push in your stool?"

          1. There's Japanese pro baseball team called "The Swallows." Named after the bird, but that makes you wonder how the bird got that name in the first place.

            1. the best Japanese baseball team name, of course, was the Nippon Ham Fighters.

              1. Unfortunately, all of their apparel seems to just be "Fighters", dropping their corporate owner's name.

            2. Call me when they change it to The Swallows Hard.

            3. I'm more of a Hiroshima Carp guy myself. My big disappointment was that instead of a cool logo that features the Queen of the River, the hats just look like a Cincinnati Reds hat.

              1. Only team owned by the city. What are you, a commie?

              2. That is 100% a Reds cap. Must save them a lot of money on Baseball hats and batting helmets though. Mass production for the win!

              3. The Hiroshima Carp with three eyes ala The Simpsons?

          2. There's Japanese pro baseball team called "The Swallows." Named after the bird, but that makes you wonder how the bird got that name in the first place.

            1. Somewhat OT: Swallows nests are kind of creepy.

      3. One did, fairly recently. The Hornets moved to New Orleans about 10 years ago, but a few years back they changed to the Pelicans. The Charlotte Bobcats reclaimed the Hornets name when that happened.

        Also, the Dallas Chaparrals became the San Antonio Spurs after their move.

        1. That was a response to JATNAS, of course.

          1. Yeah, I forgot about the Pelicans/Hornets thing. Doesn't make the Utah Jazz any less silly, though.

            1. I agree. The Lakers have had too much success to change now, though. The Jazz on the other hand...what's in Utah that's worthy of a team name? The Dry Counties or the Superfluous Wives aren't very inspiring team names.

              And what's good for Memphis? St. Louis already has the Blues.

              1. The Memphis Elvises. The Memphis BBQ. The Memphis Riverboat Gamblers (umm, maybe not). The Memphis Stax. The Memphis B.B.s.

                1. The Memphis 45s

              2. For Utah, just own it:
                The Utah Wives

                Alternately, because I like the way it sounds:
                The Salt Lake City Titty Committee

                1. The Utah Missionaries, running up and down the court in a crisp white-top, black-short uniform!

                  1. Only if they have to wear the magic underwear too.

        2. Minnesota northstars became Dallas stars.

      4. I really don't care for the way American sports teams move around so much. It's like the fans are an afterthought. Pull that shit in Europe and the owners would find their heads on pikes.

        1. In Europe, Fifty Miles is a long distance. In America, Fifty Years is a long time.

        2. They don't really, it just seems that way because we have so many teams.

          32 teams each for the NBA and NFL, 30 each for the NHL and MLB is 124 total teams.

          Since 1970 there have been 31 team moves in the 4 major sports combined although there were fewer teams in the past that comes out to somewhere around 4500 team years which makes for 1 move every 150ish team years.

          1. And the teams with the most dedicated fan bases seem to stay put.

          2. Obviously you've left out the AHL...

            England has 100+ professional soccer teams and only 1 significant move in recent decades.

          3. There are 92 fully-professional teams just in the English Football League (the top 4 divisions of soccer).

            "So many teams" really isn't.

            1. Um, you have more than 100 professional teams for one sport in a country the size of Lousiana.

              If a team wanted to move where the hell would it move too? you've got basically one team for every 500 sq miles as it is.

              Literally, if you spaced all of the teams evenly there would only be 25 miles (40 km) between each stadium.

              In the US we have 124 teams spread across 4 sports with 65x the land area and 12 of our 50 largest metropolitan areas have 0 of those 124 teams present meaning that there are actually population bases for teams to move too

              1. Actually, it is the relegation/promotion system that prevents movement in England/Europe. If every town/neighborhood had a team at some level of professional/semiprofessional/amateur and they all had the potential to eventually rise to the top level, then holding a city hostage for a stadium or you will move goes away.

                Not that governments don't get involved with stadiums anyway, but it is a different pressure.

              2. Like I said, "so many teams" really isn't.

                1. Actually it is, because you are including the equivalent of what we call the Minor Leagues.

                  How many in the Premier league, they are the only ones that count.

                  If you want to count all professional teams you can throw in about 300 minor league baseball teams, 200 or so minor league hockey teams several dozen semi pro Football teams and 50 or so Arena League teams and we haven't even gotten into major college sports yet

                  1. While the lower three divisions in the Football League are not "The Best", they are nevertheless fully professional (not semi-professional) independent clubs that do not have external affiliations with "parents".

                    The "minor leagues" would be things like the Nationwide Conference, the Ryman Leagues (if that's still the name) and a whole bunch of regional leagues besides.\

                    I really don't know why you invoked college sports, since they are immune from moving and are a separate category altogether.

                    1. Or, you could look at the pyramid graphic robc posted.

                      The teams start becoming part-time at the level of the Blue Square Bet Football Conference (formerly Nationwide Conference).

                    2. And the point is, the minor league teams (even including the Football League) can become major league thru promotion, unlike minor leagues in the US. They aren't farm teams...mostly.

                      Leicester City won the Premier League last year. They were most recently promoted from the Championship in 2014. It was a fluke, but they were "minor league" 3 years ago and are the current champions.

                      And, not surprisingly, they won't be repeating. They are in some danger of getting demoted back down to the Championship.

                      There are no teams in the Premier League from Sheffield right now, but the existence of United and Wednesday prevent anyone from moving to Sheffield.

                    3. I am familiar with what happened and how (though calling winning a 38-game league a "fluke" doesn't seem quite right, though it was massively shocking).

                      Someone made the argument that teams move because "we have so many teams." That's not why. Your reasons along with others are why, not because "we have so many teams." That doesn't even begin to cover the reasons.

                    4. Seems like an awful lot of teams move because they can no longer soak local taxpayers.

                    5. "Someone made the argument that teams move because "we have so many teams." That's not why."

                      No that was not the argument. I made the argument that the appearance of frequent movement was created by having so many teams.

                      There are a wide variety of reasons, nearly all of them boiling down to money why teams move however I never made a comment on that.

                      My comment actually was...

                      They don't really, it just seems that way because we have so many teams.

                      In other words the perception of frequent team movement was created by having more than 120 different major sports teams. Having that many teams has allowed for there to be 31 team moves in the last 46 years, averaging 2 teams moving every 3 years. That seems like a lot, however it also means that teams move on average once every 150+ years. That isn't actually very often at all.

                    6. At level 9 is where teams start refusing promotion, as they don't want to improve their stadiums or don't want to pay the extra travel costs or become semi-pro.

                    7. Actually every single one of those other levels I mentioned except the major college sports and the semi pro Football leagues is "fully professional". If you want to throw in the semi professional and amateur teams there are probably another thousand or so across various sports.

                      Yes there is a difference in that your lower tier teams are fully independent and the minor leagues here are farm teams that does not however make them any less professional.

                      Realistically you only have the top 2 tiers of leagues in England that would qualify as major sports, the Premier League and the EFL Championship league, that is 44 teams, less than 1.5 times the number of teams in the NFL alone. Sure you might have a ton more lower tier teams but from an economic and level of competition standpoint they are not at the same level as we are talking about

                      As far as simply mentioning without counting College Sports I did that to indicate that while they are something different from an economic scale they compare favorably with anything short of the Premier league (for Football and Basketball at least).

              3. Given the number of teams, the the population, and the scale involved ? is there anything like a minor league in British Football, or are they at a population/player scale where basicallly anyone who wants to play and knows how has a shot to get onto a club?

                1. The UK's appetite for soccer is so great that most towns of a population of more than about 20,000 is likely to have an amateur team.

                2. is there anything like a minor league in British Football

                  The big clubs have there own "minor leagues" in house.

                  They have an under 23 team and a youth team and etc. Their is a league for the under 23 teams of the football league clubs to play against each other. Same for the youth teams. And tournaments too.

                  The top teams have youth academies where kids will start training about 8 or 9 or something. Technically they can't sign a contract so there is nothing binding them to that club and sometimes a star youth will jump to another club when he gets of age, but its usually a direct feed into the team running them.

      5. since "Islanders" would make no sense there.

        I was going to disagree, then I realized Hartford was in Connecticut and not Rhode Island.

        Who can keep all those tiny NE counties straight anyway?

        1. Solution: hire a local supervillain to flood Connecticut and create islands, proving to the team how much more you care?

      6. How about 'Remoras', 'cos I'd end up subsidizing the fuckers ....

    2. You're nut meggin' it any easier for me to support the move.

    3. Moving to Hartford would make no sense whatsoever. They'd still play at the Mall, which is the reason the Whalers moved to North Carolina in the first place. Quebec City has a brand new 18,000 seat arena - why would the Islanders prefer to play in a 40+ year old 15,000 seat arena?

      1. The link is SF'ed but perhaps the good governor has a pot of money to offer.

    4. Do tbe Islanders know about this?

      Though I suppose playing in an arena designed for basketball does suck.

      1. I thought most (all?) hockey teams play in basketball arenas?

        Also, I heard that Barclay's Center wants to kick out the Islanders because $.

        1. The Barclay Center does not have enough floor space to fit a regulation rink in it and have a line of sight to the entire ice surface from one end . The Islanders do not sell seats at that end.

          1. So a capacity crowd for hockey in that arena is less than 16,000.

          2. Huh, didn't know that. That seems kind of short-sighted.

  7. The Patriots didn't win last night.

    Fear won.

    Hate won.

    Bigotry won.

    I'm literally shaking because of how unsafe I feel right now.


    1. Yaba Blay ?@fiyawata 11h11 hours ago

      I'ont know nothing bout football. All I know is the symbolism of this game is REAL. Please Black Jesus Don't let White Supremacy win tonight

      The first response to that tweet is pretty funny, too

      1. Well the whitest team in football (along with Packers) did win. So racism.

      2. " Yaba Blay ?@fiyawata 19 Jan 2015
        "If you do not understand White Supremacy ? what it is, and how it works ? everything else that you understand, will only confuse you."

        She's hilarious.

      3. Jack Johnson vs. James J. Jeffries was a contest where the "symbolism of the game is REAL". The Super Bowl racial undertones is forced at best by a bunch of raving partisans who couldn't look at any object in the 'verse without seeing politics.

    2. The Second City ?@TheSecondCity 11h11 hours ago
      Congratulations to the Atlanta Falcons for not having to go to the White House this year! #SuperBowl

    3. The Falcons won the first half! It should have ended there! The Cheatriots strike again!


    4. These fuckers need to stop making me want to root for the Patriots. It shows just how deeply ingrained politics is in their lives that they have to turn a damn football game into one of their stupid passion plays.

    5. The refs were Russian lap dogs.

      1. Speaking of dogs and the Super Bowl, who else watched yesterday's Puppy Bowl?


        1. Nikita, MVP.

    6. The Patriots had the ball almost twice as long as the Falcons. How is that fair? The Falcons were cheated out of their fair share of time. Both sides should have ball the same amount of time.

  8. Hartford is an island?

    Long live the Whale!

  9. Everyone done being butt-hurt about the Super Bowl yet?

    Queen Elizabeth II celebrates 65 years on the throne.

    *Salutes, single manly tear runs down cheek*

    1. Shit or get off the pot, Liz!

      1. Hey, at that age, one expects a fair bout of constipation.

    2. Wait, was the Queen Elizabeth Warren II?

    3. She's trying to outlive Prince Charles

      1. He's only a level one clergyman so I can see why she doesn't want to play as him.

        1. It's a little late in the game for her, but she could always switch her ambition and hope RNGeesus graces her with another son.

          1. Nope, past child bearing age mechanically, disadvantage of playing a woman. If she's smart she'll get depressed, imprison all her unworthy heirs and execute them, and then kill herself.

          2. There's already a move in the UK for Charles to formally remove himself from the succession in favor of his son. Either that, or abdicate immediately upon being crowned king.

            1. Are we really that surprised by that movement? A lot of people hate his guts over there (and here too, I'm no big fan) and rightly so, since he became more involved in politics than a Brit monarch is supposed to, and also, see Charles I (beheaded), and Charles II (restored, hated, helped set the stage for the Glorious Revolution).

              1. Yep. I think the legal side of the movement turns on his divorce and remarriage vis a vis the monarch being head of the Church of England.

                1. Removing Chuckles from line of succession ain't gonna happen. She's gotta outlive him, or have him 'diasppeared'.

          3. I dunno, I think at this point she's going to set one of the all-time slowest British Monarchy PBs. I heard a new tech that's been making the rounds in America is making that speedrun much more consistent, though, with most runs lasting from 4 to 8 years.

    4. No that was last year when it was in San Francisco

  10. Vice President Mike Pence will lead a commission on voter fraud.


  11. Trump's F.D.A. Pick Could Undo Decades of Drug Safeguards

    Mr. Trump has been vetting candidates to run the agency, which regulates the safety of everything from drugs and medical devices to food and cosmetics. Among them is Jim O'Neill, a former official at the Health and Human Services Department who is an associate of the Silicon Valley billionaire and Trump supporter Peter Thiel. Mr. O'Neill has argued that companies should not have to prove that their drugs work in clinical trials before selling them to consumers.

    Other candidates also have called for reducing regulatory hurdles.

    Panic headline, fairly fair article.

    1. While Mr. Trump's call to cut regulations has been warmly received by other industries, some biotech executives have reacted to his remarks with alarm. Those affiliated with some smaller companies have privately described the choice of Mr. O'Neill as a worst-case scenario that could send the drug industry into chaos. The F.D.A., they say, is not perfect, but its standards provide a level playing field on which both big and small companies can compete.

      Dr. Gulfo, the former biotech executive, said he had spoken with several people on the president's transition team about the F.D.A. job. He said he was in favor of keeping the efficacy requirement. But he said he believed the agency's standards were too rigid and burdensome to companies with innovative ideas. He called on the agency to approve more drugs based on what are known as "surrogate endpoints" ? showing that a diabetes drug lowers blood sugar, for example ? rather than forcing companies to prove that the product improves long-term outcomes like survival rates or lowering the chance for heart attacks.

    2. I'm old enough to remember when that was what the left wanted.

      1. Your awfully mature for a 10 year old.

    3. Interesting article from City Journal on how the FDA bent the rules during the 1980s to facilitate AIDS drugs.

      1. It's too much to ask to take that approach toward every disease.

    4. """"Panic headline, fairly fair article.""

      That's standard procedure.

      Sometimes the headline has nothing to do with the article

      1. The last truly accurate headline was """""Headless Body in Topless Bar""""'

    5. Good.

      Sounds like he wants to leave most safeguards anyway, and shorten the effectiveness testing requirements, which seems about right.

    6. I want the Trump administration to undo decades of piled on regulations, thanks.

  12. Warmists busted for faking data.

    1. Global warning is real and dangerous, and only government control can save us from the evil corporations that are destroying the planet. Who fucking cares about data? It's true because it's fucking true dammit! Can't pollute the atmosphere without consequences! Can't let these corporations reap obscene profits without consequences! These are the wages of carbon sin! We must repent our carbon sinning ways or perish in the fire!

      1. About 10 years ago I had a conversation at a party with a person I would characterise as a meathead. The topic that somebody else had brought up, I think, was something along the lines of how Texas had discontinued a policy of recycling glass or something to that effect, the idea being that the activity was a net economic and energy loss.

        Meathead goes: "Well I think that's just terrible."

        I sez: "If the point is that the inputs - tax money, energy, fuel and other conveyance costs, are outstripping the ostensible benefits of recycling the glass, then what's the problem?"

        Meathead: "I still think it's terrible."

        Me: Arches one eyebrow and walks away.

        1. Don't confuse people with economics. Recycling is good and wonderful because reusing trash is good and wonderful, and filling up landfills is terrible. Economic benefits and cost savings do not matter. Recycling is great because it is great. So what if it costs more? Just have government do it. Force everyone to pay so it is fair. But recycling must be done because it must. Anyone who says otherwise wants to cover the earth with trash.

          1. It's not just that, it's that these people don't see the connection between economic efficiency and benefits to the envrioment. This is how someone goes out and buys a subsidized electric car that effectively runs on coal and then that car's huge and incredibly (subsidized) cost intensive battery rots in a junk yard with the battery acid and chemicals seeping out into the environment for the next several hundred years, and they still get to feel like they're helping the environment.

            1. The biggest problem I have with groups like Greenpeace and the Sierra Club are that they don't do the kinds of capitalist investing that would help companies and individuals innovate our way out of doing recycling the same old energy intensive way. If they put the amount of money they spend lobbying elected officials to pass laws into R&D, we'd probably have much better ways that are less polluting to recycle both glass and cardboard (look at the amount of acids required to break down paper products and cardboard, and how those are disposed of, then tell me it's more environmentally friendly to use recycled products).

              1. That's a good point too. Though I don't know if recycling glass will ever be worth it, in the near term anyway. There isn't exactly a shortage of silica in the world.

                And the thing about paper is that paper companies own lots of forest and have a strong interest in maintaining healthy forests. No one is cutting down old growth trees to make pulp in the US these days. So making new paper has it's environmental advantages too, which need to be part of the equation.

              2. cf. Audubon Society, which opted to extract petroleum on lands they owned to better fund conservation efforts.

                1. @commodious

                  Have no doubt most environmentalists would look on that as a great sin, while at they same time those enviromentalists are demanding that people should fund their own policy objectives on pain of imprisonment or death and they just walk away with a clean conscience.

            2. Yeah, shows that recycling really is like a religious ritual for a lot of people. It's funny how many people won't be convinced even though the argument against recycling glass (and several other materials) is perfectly sound from an environmental/conservation perspective.

              People who worry about landfills have a terrible sense of scale.

              1. I know some major glass recyclers personally. It's a huge business because they get paid to take it and paid to sell it. Then they sort and refine it according to customer demand and sell it to companies that make paint for roadways, insulation, concrete, filter manufacturers and on and on. Recycling things like batteries could certainly be seen as a losing venture, but glass recycling actually does stand on it's own market based merits.

                1. but glass recycling actually does stand on it's own market based merits.

                  Don't let the environmentalists hear that. They'll try to ban it to stop the evul corpourashuns from making immoral profits.

                2. Interesting. I think my local town dump guy has a hard time getting rid of glass. But I guess if you can pay less to have it taken away than you do to have regular trash taken away and landfilled, it's worth it.

                  But I don't think recycling glass into new glass containers is worth it energy and expense-wise.

                  1. @Zeb

                    The recycler's job is essentially done by the time they've refined it to whichever granular size is appropriate for that particular market. This powdered glass gets sold to whomever buys it and some of them are manufacturers who might well find it more cost effective to buy this glass powder than to process sand into new glass. Glass recycling is cheap, it's mostly just a matter of smashing and grinding.

                    1. My father's small business (he's now retired, although he still consults on a few deals per year) was actually in being the middleman for such "regrind" for recycled materials (his specialty was plastics, but he'd occasionally deal with others). It's crazy to watch how complicated the process of recycling is (and through how many hands such material goes) ? the question of economics, both on the basic scale and among folks like my father trying to work buyers/sellers at both ends, makes total sense.

                3. They get paid to take it.

                  There is the problem. I'm sure it IS great being a chosen winner by the government. Just sucks when you're the consumer or taxpayer who is chosen to lose.

                  1. They get paid to take it.

                    There is the problem. I'm sure it IS great being a chosen winner by the government. Just sucks when you're the consumer or taxpayer who is chosen to lose.

                    Not really no. For example, Sony Corp or whoever pays them to take old TV tubes which contain lead. Sony has no use for them and wants to offload the liability for storing, selling and handling hazardous material. So they pay someone to take it. Or a windshield manufacturer who contracts the recyclers to take their defective windshields off their hands, which is cheaper than sending them to the dump or trying to reprocess the defective products themselves.

                  2. They get paid to take it.

                    More like--

                    The government forces me to pay them to take it.

                4. Broken glass (cullet) has been a component of new glass manufacture for centuries - as I understand it, glass made solely from fresh silica just isn't as good, so recycling of at least a portion of the discarded glass was always economically viable, let alone the demand as inert, clean filler for construction materials.

                  Dark ages of recycling - during WW2 the British government went on these 'donate scrap for victory' initiatives, and any aluminum (or, more properly for us brits, aluminium) was just dumped in the North Sea, because the energy and technical demands for reprocessing the finished goods was supposedly higher than for primary production.

                  Given that now, you have to pay people to cart just about any kind of paper waste away (as recently as the 90's, used computer printout paper would turn a profit) it's clear that a significant proportion of what you think is being recycled, is actually being burned or buried.

        2. You could use that glass to make solar-freaking-roadways!! LOL

    2. None of the data on which the paper was based was properly 'archived' ? a mandatory requirement meant to ensure that raw data and the software used to process it is accessible to other scientists

      "*Trust* us!"

      1. None of the data on which the paper was based was properly 'archived' ? a mandatory requirement meant to ensure that raw data and the software used to process it is accessible to other scientists

        Someone has been learning from Micheal Mann

    3. You know AGW is a very serious threat, because why else would they lie so much about it to convince skeptics? There is so much at stake here that we can't adhere to penny-ante concepts like truth, goddammit!

    4. Not exactly earth-shattering news. Everyone with a three digit IQ has known for a few years now these lying scumbags have been doing this. They call it "hiding the decline", and there a couple of hilarious YouTube parody songs that were made about it.

      I'm sure this won't stop Ron Bailey from continuing to shove the bullshit down our throats though.

      1. Go finish your stupid book, Weigel.

        1. Suck Block Yomomma's cock, gay boy.

          1. Do gay people scare you, Dave?

            1. This is the nearest Mikey ever gets to 'witty,' folks.

              1. It seems like I have awakened some feelings deep inside of him. Let it out, Mikey. Embrace it.

    5. busted *AGAIN* ... FTFY

  13. world's leading source of climate data rushed to publish a landmark paper that exaggerated global warming and was timed to influence the historic Paris Agreement on climate change.

  14. Turned on the game part way into the 3rd quarter, figure the Pats were fucked, so I put on Netflix.

    Guess I should have had faith or something.

    Bah. Sports shmorts. Couldn't care less.

  15. Good morning, everyone. I now have an anonymous email address and would love to hear from any of my friends on here, or even some of my more reasonable antagonists.

    BTW, for anyone wanting a free, truly anonymous email account, protonmail is the shizznat. They are in Switzerland so beyond the reach of US and EU subpoenas, etc. (Suck it, Preet!)

    1. Now I have somewhere to have my woodchipper supply catalogs sent! Thanks!

    2. Good morning, Tonio.

    3. Did you sell your account to anonbot?

      1. No, it's really me. [Insert obligatory taunt of Eddie here.] See?

    4. So, if someone e-mails you from a regular account (yahoo, hotmail, etc.), does that compromise the protonmail account in any way?

      1. What is the sound of one hand clapping?

        1. *** places sandals on head and walks away ***

      2. So, if someone e-mails you from a regular account (yahoo, hotmail, etc.), does that compromise the protonmail account in any way?


        1. Is the Protonmail server in your basement?

          1. That would be silly, e-mail servers go in bathrooms.

    5. Another recommendation for Protonmail here. It works great.

    6. My take on Protonmail mail is that it is only secure enough for government work.

      Having talked with some people involved, my impression is there are better than 50/50 odds that it's honeypot. There is a reason they haven't been shutdown like Lavabit.

      Unfortunately, Swiss privacy law are not what it used to be.

      1. My main reason for using this is to make it difficult for garden-variety snoops, say some of the more deranged trolls here, to track me down. With regular email, say Yahoo, you can view the headers of where the message has been and potentially discover the home or work network address of the person. With this mail system the only address they can get is the address of the protonmail servers, and the only personal information they can see is the stuff you provide to p-mail. Don't put your real name on the account and you'r pretty anonymous.

        My understanding is that Lavabit is coming back.

        1. Y'all might want to look at mail service.

          Two accounts. Account 1 for your equivalent of your protonmail account, and account 2 JUST for password resets etc on account 1.

    7. I owe you a "Tonio" logo. Still working on it.

      1. Thanks. FWIW, I'm not the one who does the bending-over, which may complicate things. But even if you give me a bendover logo I'll use it ironically!

    8. Are you still making an Reason commenter alternative site?

  16. "Did you catch these hidden messages in Lady Gaga's half-time performance?"

    That's some definition of hidden ya got there, USA Today.

    1. I have a remote control, so no.

  17. Villagers knit jumpers for Indian elephants to protect the large mammals from near-freezing temperatures

    Elephants in India are sporting colourful woollen jumpers after villagers knitted the super-size garments to protect the animals from near-freezing temperatures.

    Women in a village near the Wildlife SOS Elephant Conservation and Care Centre in the northern city of Mathura reportedly began producing the colourful, pyjama-like garments after staff at the centre warned temperatures were approaching sub-zero at night.

    The conservation centre takes in rescued elephants who have previously suffered chronic neglect and beatings from cruel handlers.

    1. But climate change is killing the polar bears! IS there NOTHING climate change can't do?!?!?

      1. This is why we need climate redistribution.

    2. Mammals the size of elephants have sufficient mass to stay plenty warm during a cold snap. Admit it, villagers, you just wanted to see elephants wearing sweaters.

      1. It is an awesome picture.

        1. Oh, i don't blame them at all for wanting to see elephants in sweaters.

      2. But that's the fashion: if you want to do something ridiculous, disguise it by saying you are doing it for a good cause. Your actions aren't silly/crazy if they are being done for a good cause. Walk across America, dump a bucket of ice over your head, knit sweaters for elephants: these actions aren't meaningless frivolities, they're statements of good will!

        1. Not that I'm against pointless frivolities, I just think it's silly to pretend that they are anything more.

  18. "Did you catch these hidden messages in Lady Gaga's half-time performance?"

    Actually, they were *Biden* messages.

    1. Actually, they were *Biden* messages.

      At the end, when she jumped down into that hole, she seemed to vanish for those of us watching at home. For those of us at the stadium, however, she could be seen landing in a Camaro and driving off into the direction of the nearest train station...

  19. "Did you catch these hidden messages in Lady Gaga's half-time performance?"

    She signaled her like of equality, love and acceptance. Something which her ideological opponents apparently don't like? SO BRAVE

    1. I was too busy looking for a wardrobe malfunction.

      1. Did her nine inch clit slip out?

        1. Not with the diaper she was wearing.

        2. Not with the diaper she was wearing.

  20. Hero flight attendant rescues teen from human trafficker by leaving a secret note for her on Alaska Airlines bathroom mirror

    A flight attendant rescued a girl from human trafficking after she spotted the disheveled teen sitting on a plane and left a note for her in the restroom.

    Shelia Fedrick, 49, was working on an Alaska Airlines flight from Seattle to San Francisco when she noticed a teen, believed to be 14 or 15 years old, sitting in the window seat next to a well-dressed older man, NBC reported.

    Fedrick said the victim had greasy blond hair and looked like she 'had been through pure hell'. It was the contrast between the two that raised a red flag.

    A group of about 100 flight attendants flew to Houston to learn how to spot the signs of human-trafficking situations.

    The seminar trained them to look for signs that Fedrick found, such as disheveled passengers, people who insist on speaking for the victim, or if they appear to be drugged.

    1. But, how did she know the teen would see the note in the lavatory, and not anybody else, such as the well-dressed gentleman she was sitting with?

      1. My question is "how can we even know that they were travelling together and it wasn't just a case of a poor bastard getting seated next to a slob?"

        1. All men are human traffickers, UCS.

        2. Shit! I'm flying today. I hope I'm not seated next to a sloppy teen.

        3. I would think that would usually be fairly obvious. The man speaking for the girl would have give it away in this case.

        4. I think the passenger manifest indicates who bought the tickets.

    2. Note to self: Bath sex slaves before travel.

      1. Seriously. Since you can only bring 3oz of toiletries aboard, use the extras to clean up your underaged whores ? the clientele will thank you!

    3. Couple issues with this story... if it happened a few years ago - since the article says she has kept in touch with the girl over the past few years, and the girl is now in college - why is the story just now running as news? The full-length glamour shots make me think it's more to promote this lady's acting/modeling career that was mentioned. Also, way to broadcast your secret way of identifying traffickers.

      1. It also doesn't say what the nature of the "trafficking" was or what the man was charged with or if he was even convicted of anything.

    4. I'll take the wispy teenage slob over the alternative, whatever the risk.

  21. So is the Great Reason Commentariat Purge of 2017 over? Feels weird. You know what I mean?

    1. I'm not sure who's left, or if reason will notice.

      1. Such a waste. Finally get a knack for whose links to click, whose comments to read and who to avoid like the plague.

          1. Can you whisper The Lion King song in my ear as you do that?

            1. Listen, there are still plenty of people who will continue to constantly in the comments, so at least you have that.

              1. Continue to WHAT constantly in the comments, CJ, if I dare ask?

            2. [softly] ?? Hakuna matata, ain't no... somethin something

        1. On the plus side, some people are now getting promotions on the Hihn Approved Fascist List.

          1. Yes!

            /pumps fist.

            Finally my chance has arrived!

            1. Good luck pushing John out of the top spot, you'll have to fight him and cut his head off. And then the Fascist Quickening will begin.

              1. There can be only one. *whips out pocket sword and slices then stabs for good measure (sorry John, rules is rules, you will be missed.)

            2. Breakfast Club Emilio Estevez disagrees.

          2. I don't post much, but I've already admitted to being a conservative, so I'll just need to spam Hihn the next time he's here...

            *crosses fingers*

          3. ... just like making the Royal Navy Captain's List - it's all about seniority, as well as rum, sodomy and the lash.

    2. WhadI miss?

    3. They weren't a god fit for reason.

      Shitka and Chapman, on the other hand, are great fits for reason.

      1. No Dalmia article over the weekend, I noticed. I thought she usually posts on Saturday or Sunday. Any chance KMW is actually listening to us?

        1. She could be on vacation. I'm going to reserve judgement and see what the pattern looks like.

        2. I don't need Reason to listen to us.

          I just want them to not get infected with the derp virus. They've lost balance, they can get it back quite easily, like a stumbling man regains footing -- or you know, falls on his face or ass.

          1. Or they can stop having "Thunderbird Thursdays" for their staff.

      2. I usually at least click her articles to see which parts people who actually read them choose to mock in the comments, but after her idiotic tweets I'm not even going to do that anymore.

        It's a pity they let her editorialize so often about immigration issues. She has occasionally produced articles like the one about Modi's big currency swap that are actually decent.

    4. I get the feeling it's going to be a regular occurrence from now on. Everyone puts up with Reason for a bit, and then they do something so profoundly stupid that it causes another group of a couple people to drop, over and over again. For the next four years at least.

      1. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

        1. I don't want your prayers, and especially your thoughts, anywhere near my general person.

          1. I shudder to think what his prayers are like.

            1. An outstretched tongue and a lollipop tucked into the corner of the mouth.

            2. A smell like moldy Limburger and the sound of angels retching.

      2. The tipping point will be if someone sets up an unaffiliated site that is a functional replacement for Hit-N-Run that critiques Reason articles, and has a few sensible features like a UI that doesn't suck balls, and a much more restrained approach to adware.

        Critical commenter mass (comprising a reasonable subset of the regular H&R commentators) and people will flood to it.

    5. Doubt it. There is no shortage of crybabies in the world.

    6. So is the Great Reason Commentariat Purge of 2017 over? Feels weird. You know what I mean?

      Was "John" finally outed as Steve Bannon?

      1. Yeah, fun times and good-natured banter.

    7. Still on the fence. I've been hanging out here since 2004. We'll see how this week runs out.

    8. Explanation, for those of us not in on the reference?

      1. Short version: Reason ran a massive number of articles on Trump's immigration order (something like 16 out of 23). It culminated with Fisher posting an article with a headline along the lines of "Trumps order condemned this green card holder to die of a heart attack in Iran." Turned out the story was basically bullshit - although a lot of people were disgusted with Reason standing on a dead body to make a point.

        That alone caused a number of people to give up (Hamster of Doom, RC Dean).

        At the same time Sloopy was posting that his mom had been beat down by cops at a HS basketball game. A number of people e-mailed KMW and she responded that they wouldn't cover the story because it didn't really fit Reason.

        1. At the same time Sloopy was posting that his mom had been beat down by cops at a HS basketball game. A number of people e-mailed KMW and she responded that they wouldn't cover the story because it didn't really fit Reason.

          The refusal to even drop a blog post seriously irks me, becuase they could have gotten away with one saying "In a statement to reason, the Spicer family said..." and put in what sloopy sent them and add "the local new reported it as..." with the link to the half-assed paper article. Claiming that a report of police abuse was not a fit for a magazine that went on to cover a canadian traffic stop (with no violence enacted) just doesn't fit. It really doesn't make sense to me as a five minute action for the interns they keep advertising for would have gone a long way.

          1. A brickbat would have been perfect, which is after all, where that Canadian traffic stop post was dropped.

      2. A few days ago, several regular comment posters said they'd had enough, and were leaving, never to return.

          1. Is it worth anything? Balko dragged me over to Huffpo where "the Agitator" mostly died, only to be staked through the heart, set on fire and run through a woodchipper over at WaPo.

            A similarly focused and intelligent community would be a worthwhile endeavor. I've tried to create one here by imagining that none of the sockpuppet trolls actually exist. Reasonable helps my imagination on that count.

            1. On that Steam Community page, Riven posted that some are actively working on a new site.

              The question will be, who is sponge-worthy?

    9. How is it a purge? Reason didn't lock anyone's accounts.

      1. More of an exodus, really.

    10. I'm hoping for a second wind. I'm not liking the balance right now.

  22. University records reveal shocking details of party where 20-year-old student was found dead

    "The investigation found that attendees were intoxicated to the point of being unconscious as they laid on the ground or being intoxicated to the point of throwing up,."

    "Hey, Fred -- Go down to the frat and see what's shaking."

    1. As they laid what on the ground?

    2. Back in my early thirties we called that Tuesday

    3. Whoa whoa whoa, wait! College kids were getting drunk?!?

  23. On what basis do the states of WA and MN have standing to sue to stop the implementation of the recent EO?

    1. Hurt FEELNZ!

    2. From what I read in the news, they successfully argued that the immigration order caused the states hardship because it kept useful immigrants such as healthcare and high-tech workers, and advanced college students from doing useful things within the states.

  24. Reason writers, you guys best get busy and crank out half a dozen pants shitting articles about Trump's statement "Don't be naive, the US has a lot of killers". It the prog hysteria of the day, and despite your recent good work, you're still on double secret probation. -- Journolist 3.0

    1. The US killing people abroad and supporting brutal regimes is okay as long as the President is a Democrat and has the correct domestic agenda.

      1. And an apology tour is shameful and proof the president hates America.

        But I guess Trump isn't apologizing for us being no better than Russia. *shrug*

    2. The tone of your comment seems snarky, but it's hard to tell whether you are dissing or complimenting the reason reporters.

  25. Donald J. Trump ?
    Any negative polls are fake news, just like the CNN, ABC, NBC polls in the election. Sorry, people want border security and extreme vetting.

    7:01 AM - 6 Feb 2017
    12,228 Retweets 49,736 likes


    1. Winning

    2. I'll admit I larfed

  26. My internet and TV were out between 6PM EST and 11PM EST last night. Comcast needs to be burnt to the ground.

    1. That's OK, you didn't miss anything.

      1. Just the greatest game in the history of football.

        1. I hate you.

    2. Next time that Goddell's thugs ask for money, you pay up...

    3. Buy a damned antenna. Jesus, you're going to be the first die in a zombie apocalypse.

  27. Anti-Trump Protesters Block Ambulance Rushing to Hospital

    The protesters "obstructed an ambulance carrying a critically ill patient," the state police report read, according to the New Haven Independent. "Due to this delay, ambulance personnel were required to perform an emergency medical procedure in the ambulance instead of at the hospital."

    1. It was probably a white dude in the ambulance so it's all good.

      1. +1 Al Sharpton

  28. Where's Lord Humongous?

    The answer, my friend, is blowin' in the wind.

    The answer is blowin' in the wind.

    1. He said he was leaving.

      Whether it is to wander the wasteland or to never return is yet to be seen.

      1. It was a rhetorical question like, "How many roads must a man walk down before he is finally a man?"

        1. Zero roads are required (see Somalia)

          Also, it is quite possible to clap with one hand by bringing the fingers down against the palm. Because of the limitations of velocity and air displacement, the noise is less pronounced than two hands clapping, but still audible.

        2. Rhetorical, eh?

    2. Looks like Ken and I were both listening to Dylan over the weekends and making connections to Reason.

  29. Remember that time the Atlanta Falcons had a 25-point lead in the Super Bowl and lost? Heh. That was awesome.

    1. This is what happens when you send a sad-sack franchise like the Falcons out to slay Grendl. Of course they didn't get the job done - they're the sorry ass Falcons!

  30. Betsy DeVos , President Donald Trump 's choice to be secretary of education, is at risk Tuesday of becoming the first cabinet nominee in 28 years to be rejected by the Senate . . . . With two Republican senators now opposed to Mrs. DeVos, her nomination would fail if a third Republican abandons her during the confirmation vote, expected on Tuesday.

    Republicans hold 52 Senate seats, and Democrats have 48. If no additional opponents to her nomination emerge, the Senate will be tied, 50-50, leaving Vice President Mike Pence with the deciding vote and making her the only cabinet nominee in history to win confirmation on a tiebreaking vote by a vice president."

    ----Wall Street Journal opposition-mounts-for- education-nominee- betsy-devos-1486336445

    1. "Fine. I'll shut down the department."

      1. If Trump did this, I would buy one of his Chinese-manufactured Make America Great Again hat.

    2. I sense some horse-trading on Capitol Hill.

      1. They are all-in on this one. She's the teacher's union anti-christ.

        They cannot admit that anything other than "give more money to the school system as it exists and pay the teachers more" is even a rational subject for consideration. They've proved that over and over, pulling out all the stops to destroy anyone who is successful with an alternative plan that doesn't increase the power and wealth of the existing unions.

      2. This. These two got permission to jump ship to shore up their "moderate" cred - Collins is up for reelection in 2020 in Maine; the signalling must begin now.

        1. Isn't Maine the state that keeps electing the crazy racist governor? Seems to me moderation isn't what the voters there want.

  31. Part One

    Somewhere in America?

    Pushing open the door, I entered the headquarters of the Danger 5, the deadliest, most effective group of spies and clandestine operatives the world had ever known.

    "All right, team, fortunately for you we've got a new mission," I said to them, accepting a cocktail from Robot Pierre. "Unfortunately for me, you lot are the weakest, least effective group of spies and clandestine operatives the world has ever known. But since the original Danger 5 are all either retired or on some sort of time-travel-related mission, I can't remember, you are the best I've got so I'm stuck with you. Just don't expect me to learn any of your names."

    I gobbled some of my drink, an excellent concoction that Robot Pierre had labeled The Perfect Libertarian Moment. Just the right amount of bittersweet. "Also, you'll still be called the Danger 5, because I don't want to get new business cards." That would probably be fine. They were at the very least dangerous to themselves, and I assumed there were five of them; the eagle part of my brain can't count past three.

    A pink-haired young woman in the back loudly asked, "We're gonna go punch some Nazis, right? That's what I signed up for. Punching Nazis."

    "Shut up," I said. "No."

    1. "Are we stopping the hippie riots in California?" asked a middle-aged yokel carrying a shotgun.

      "Shut up," I said. "No, I wouldn't trust any of you to stop a lynch mob of apocolyptic hamsters. Progressives are far beyond your skill level."

      "Well what's our mission then?" inquired an insightful, witty, ambiguous character, perhaps a stand-in for the reader, who's to say.

      "Shut up," I said. "I've got a story here you need to deliver to Reason Magazine, about a lady being beaten up by the cops. Maybe she's even somebody's mother." I handed the ambiguous one the manuscript. Humans all looked the same to me but statistically speaking this one was probably male, so mentally I edited that previous sentence to contain the appropriate pronoun. I didn't actually edit it, though, because the only thing less possible to me than editing is mucking about.

      "And," I added with urgency, "as always: kill Hitler."

      The pink-haired one whipped out a pistol and started shooting wildly, destroying a lamp, the record player, and one of the paintings.

      "What the fuck are you doing?" everyone else shouted. My attention was on the cocktail.

      "I was shooting at Hitler," she said triumphantly.

      *Cut to commercial*

      1. Are people going to understand that you are half-man, half-eagle? It's what really brings it together.

        1. Anyone who doesn't understand it is woefully uninformed about the diplomatic relationship between humans and eagles.

          I'll be posting the remainder of the story in four exciting installments throughout the week, in the AM Links.

  32. Kremlin says it wants apology from Fox News over Putin comments

    "We consider such words from the Fox TV company to be unacceptable and insulting, and honestly speaking, we would prefer to get an apology from such a respected TV company," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on a conference call.

    Ed reported on the interview here

  33. *throws another log on the fire*

    shikha sood dalmia ?@shikhadalmia Feb 2
    Honest condemnation of #Berkley violence must also condemn those who invited him.What's point except baiting n inciting in Trump's America?

    shikha sood dalmia ?@shikhadalmia 23h23 hours ago
    Only Berkley admin acted well in the Milo saga. Not the lefty thugs and not the @CRNC Repubs who invited the jerk:

    shikha sood dalmia ?@shikhadalmia Feb 3
    When facts are always "alternative," brute force is all that's left in settling with intellectual opponents!

    shikha sood dalmia ?@shikhadalmia Feb 3
    No matter what the moral rot on the left, the right always manages to outdo it! Sad!

    shikha sood dalmia ?@shikhadalmia Jan 31
    No, the Gorsuch nomination comes not even close to compensating for 13 days of Trump's cruel actions!

    To be fair, she did put out a Tweet that cannot be copied and pasted saying that violence is bad and rioters should be prosecuted..... then goes on to say that conservatives in Berkeley are self-indulgent children for thinking their "free speech right's in Trump's America" are more important issue than temporary travel restrictions from certain nations. She throws free speech under the bus because people are saying things she doesn't like about her hobby horse issue. Shikha is loathsome, in case anyone forgot over the weekend.

    1. You forgot this one, where she retweets our favorite HnR troll:

      shikha sood dalmia Retweeted

      Kizone Kaprow ?@Kizone_Kaprow ? Feb 3

      @TheTelex @shikhadalmia Try to focus. "Fear" of finding a new medical plan vs. fear of living the rest of your life in a horrendous camp.

      1. Did they start Trump Summer Camps?

      2. Just when you thought Shikha couldn't get any worse, she retweets Mary Stack's dumbass assertions.

        1. OK, I am now convinced she may have gone off the deep end.

          1. She retweeted Mary Stack. That even amazes me. Wow.

            1. Mary is the only one responding to her posts aside from the first bed shitting post about the need to condemn campus Republicans over the Berkeley riot.

      3. Horrendous camp? What the fucking hell is she even talking about?

        1. That Trump (very sensibly) floated an idea about setting up safe zones in Syria or the middle east to help refugees instead of bringing them to the west. I say it's sensible because with the same resources that Europe spends to import 1 refugee, they could provide all the same amenities plus security to help 12 people by keeping them in the region. And that doesn't even include all the costs associated with bringing them to the west including court costs, local welfare bennies, public schools, increased public transport loads and having to hear moral preening form German Chancellor Potatosackface et cetera.

          1. You just don't get it. How are the Democrats going to get more reliable voter blocks if we don't bring in more unskilled workers who are at risk of becoming wards of the state?

    2. She is worse because she possess as a libertarian while braking with its foundational tenant.

      I'm also suprised how she doesn't see the connection between this and blaming a rape victim for wearing the wrong but cloth's.

      1. Poses*

        1. You forgot "tenet".

          1. No no I meant to talk about renters. 😉

      2. "Libertarian" because it pisses her off less than others, according to her twitter description.

      3. The first thing I thought was that she'd never say something like, "She must have wanted to be raped, look at what she was wearing!" Then the second thought was that she must really hold the left in contempt if she thinks they're so incapable of controlling their own behavior that they can't be expected not to riot when they hear someone say something they don't like.

        1. She did say "No matter what the moral rot on the left, the right always manages to outdo it! Sad!"

          The right's incitement is worse than the left's violent response, okay?

    3. Yes, she is beyond disgusting. And only a fool would believe her attempt at a walkback is sincere.

      1. Even if you take the walk-back post at face value, she comes right out and says unrestricted immigration trumps free speech in a contest of values.

  34. There was a glaring lack of M&M's, Doritos, and funny beer commercials this Super Bowl.

  35. "Health insurers take steps to fold fitness trackers into business"

    Fitbit will supply watches to employees of company X, insurerer will reduce health insurance rates for that company if employees do their company-mandated workouts as measured by the fitbits.
    You get to wear your won Big Brother!

    1. The Fitbit deal is part of a larger movement by health insurers, employers and wearable device makers to boost employees' health ? and their bottom lines. Employers have long offered incentives for their workers to get healthier through smoking-cessation programs and discounts on gym membership. But the explosion of wearable technology that can monitor one's steps, sleep patterns and heart rate is opening the door for gathering meaningful data and linking it to the cost of health care.

      I don't see the problem with this.

      1. I do. The way my brother and SIL go on about getting their steps in is annoying.

        1. HR is in love with all this well-being crap. This is just another thing to keep them busy annoying us.

        2. You should be healthier, Commode. Start walking, bro! 4,000 steps already so far today!

          1. Is there even any evidence that "getting steps in" absent actual, you know, heartrate-elevating cardio makes a difference? It's like the whole "calories in, calories out" canard, it's just taken at face value that getting the steps in and eating chicken breast is all you need to lose weight or improve your cardiac profile.

            1. Uh.... isn't that kinda all it is. Calories in, calories out. If you are on a maintenance diet and then you eat less calories and you will lose weight. It is kind of a fundamental precept of biology.

              And it really doesn't take that much.

              If you are eating exactly the amount of calories to maintain your body wieght and then you just add one little treat per day - just one candy bar - you'll pack on pounds in a year.

              The converse is true. If you just eat 200 less calories than you need to maintain your weight, you'll drop the 25 pounds.

              Actually doing it is the trick. Your body will start fighting back at some point, because it wants you to eat those calories. And hunger can make you do stupid things..... like downing a half a box of ice cream at 11pm.

          2. Two hours after your 4000-step comment, I'm reading this on my phone, having still not gotten out of bed. #TotalVictory

      2. I wonder if health insurance plans see any significant reduction in costs because of this stuff?

        And if I'm even inactive enough that I feel I need to count steps to make sure I'm moving around enough, it's time to pack it in.

        1. Diabetes medication costs down, shin splints and runner's knee costs up.

        2. I stopped believing any of the crap coming out of HR the day I found out that vaping is punished exactly like smoking.

        3. Oops: "ever inactive enough".

          It does seem like most of what big HR departments do is done just because they need something to do to keep busy.


    Lunatic NYU professor seen telling cops to attack people, is into "lobster porn". They always turn out to be weirdos don't they?

    1. She definitely has her finger on the pulse of how to change the minds of Trump supporters:

      ""I wanted to do a complete domination of Trump, where everything he's said about women I could throw back at him," Goyette said. She ties him up, squirts breast milk on him, and cuts off his penis with garden shears. She gives herself an abortion and makes Trump lick the baby. A guest ghost hailing from Mexico pays tribute to Trump's heinous Cinco de Mayo tweet, shoving a taco bowl in his face. "

      1. Is she related to SugarFree at all?

    2. Oh, and if you read the article she's not a professor of anything and doesn't work for NYU. Shocking!

      1. I forgot the scare quotes around "professor". The fact that everyone took it at face value that she was an NYU professor says a whole lot about the sorry state of higher education in this country.

          1. Fake but believable. She is obviously a complete lunatic. You would think her being a lunatic would have caused people to not believe she was really a professor. Instead, everyone took it at face value that she was, because this kind of shit is what we have come to expect from professors.

            1. Look, if a bizarre fetish pornographer/depraved lunatic with murderous fantasies can't get a job teaching NYU students some strain of twisted activist pablum, free speech is truly dead in America.

              1. If American Students can't pay $70,000 a year to learn the nuances and joys of lobster porn, the terrorists have won.

                In Donald Trump's America, professors of Lobster Porn are left unemployed.

                1. I wish NYU would hire her, maybe for media outreach. These are the voices on the left we need to hear for the next four years.

    3. They got Lobster Girl?!?

      1. It's not that lobster girl.

        1. It's our Mary, right?

  37. How do you blow a 25 point lead!?

    1. Carefully and deliberately.

    2. Go conservative on offense, don't have a dominant running game that allows you to eat up the clock and most importantly, when you finally do realize you need to score and your defense is shot, have your quarterback spit the bit and take a sack putting you out of field goal range on a crucial third down. Had Atlanta kicked a field goal on their last possession rather than punting, the tying touchdown would have been irrelevant.

    3. Decide to run bone-headed plays instead of kicking the goddam FG to ice the win!
      And the '9ers are hiring the guy; just what they need.

      1. Why were they passing at all once they got into FG range? Just run the damn ball. They were playing in a dome. The chances of making anything under a 50 yard FG are over 75%.

        1. Atlanta's running back (no idea what his name is) had a couple pretty incredible plays.

          1. He also fucked up his pass protection assignment, allowing his QB to get nailed and fumble the ball away.

            1. That goes back to coaching. Why was he put in that situation in the first place? This is why Belicheck wins. He understands the abilities of his players and doesn't put them in situations they can't handle. I doubt that is the first block he has missed. A lot of Rbs are not great pass blockers. So, why was he in the game when a play was called that depended on him making such a block?

      2. In the end Belicheck wins so much because so many other football coaches are stupid. It is not that Belicheck is that smart, though he is very smart. It is that so many other NFL coaches, despite being at the top of their profession, are just not that smart.

        When you think about it, to be a professional football coach, you have to be either born into a family that coaches or a good enough athlete and player to play at least small college football. Nearly every coach in the NFL at least played small college ball and many of them played some in the NFL. That is one hell of an entry barrier to a profession. How many really smart people both have the athletic ability to play college or pro football and the interest in becoming a football coach? Not that many.

      3. It helps a lot when the referees call it one-sided, seeing a holding penalty while simultaneously missing a blatant face mask the other way on one of the most critical plays of the game.

        Even so, there's no way to sugarcoat the epic nature of the choke job. It was like the sports version of election night. The Falcons should probably just go ahead and change their team name to the Atlanta Hildogs.

        1. Yeah. That holding call was interesting. Remember, Kansas City got screwed against the Steelers by a phantom holding call on a two point conversion. That one didn't surprise me. The NFL has been screwing people for the benefit of the Rooneys and the Steelers for decades. But the NFL is supposed to hate the Patriots. And yet, when it mattered, the league employed refs screwed the Falcons.

          1. Maybe a bit of overcorrecting? Knowing the fans will think they're in Goodell's pocket, and being a bit harder on the Falcons as a result?

            1. maybe. The entire league is a mess. I have so had it with them. As much as I dislike Goddell, people shouldn't forget what a egotistical crapweasel Bob Kraft is. They really do deserve one another.

          2. Kansas City got screwed against the Steelers by a phantom holding call on a two point conversion.

            1. Hmm, HTML fail:

              Kansas City got screwed against the Steelers by a phantom holding call on a two point conversion.

              I'm a Chiefs fan but that holding call looked legit. You could, of course, complain about the lack of consistency in calling holding.

              1. It wasn't legit. Even Andy Reid said it wasn't. Yes, he has a bias but Reid has never been a big complainer about the refs. And he is a solid NFL company man.

                What Fisher did on that play happens 50 times a game in the NFL and never gets called. The only reason it was called was because Harrison knew he was beat and flopped on the ground causing the ref to think there was more going on than what there was.

        2. The facemask didn't matter because Sanu grabbed the facemask, too.

          If you want to complain about a call (non-call in this case).....the 2pt conversion that tied the game was an obvious pick play that should have been flagged for OPI.

        3. The Falcons should probably just go ahead and change their team name to the Atlanta Hildogs.

          Mike, I really enjoyed this comment. Hehe.

    4. Two main reasons: Freeman completely blew his blocking assignment out of his ass, and Ryan took a sack that he simply cannot take in that situation. He's got to have it in his head that, if the pass isn't there, throw it away. Yes, the holding call on the next play was bad, but they aren't even in that spot if Ryan doesn't take the sack. Run into the line three times and kick the damned field goal.

    5. Here's the Atlanta media on the loss.


      By now, we are running out of room in the catalogue of Atlanta Sports Disasters.

      We are writing in the margins at this point, scrawling in a confused and angry hand about the greatest Super Bowl give-back in history, the kind of loss that leaves lasting scars and makes a town sad and cynical for a very long time.

      A simple defeat would not be enough, not when the Falcons were involved. Instead, they would have to have four fingers wrapped around the Super Bowl trophy, holding a 25-point lead with just more than 23 minutes left, the preamble to victory speeches dancing in their heads, before it all went to ashes.

      1. Could have been worse - at least Eugene Robinson wasn't picked up before the game for solicitation this time.

    6. Until proven otherwise, I'm holding out on Belichek hacking Gaga's drone fleet for SpyGate 2k17!

  38. You can tell that there's less energy around here with all the missing people, right?

    It feels deader than the week between Christmas and New Years.

    And it's a Monday in February.

    1. At this time exactly one week ago, the AM links had 513 comments. Today it's 371, immediately after the exodus.

      1. In fairness, that was coming out of Trumpocalypse weekend during which he'd signed his EO and Reason had to temerity to cover it.

        1. 536 comments in the AM links the week before that at 12PM EST. No AM links the week before that.

          1. Obviously the week before can be explained with pent-up commenter demand.

  39. You guys remember that in the French presidential election, the center-right was putting up a candidate named Fillon, who's basically like a Margaret Thatcher type. The way they do things, they're a multiparty system, and the two candidates with the highest vote totals face each other in a run-off. Long story short, the center-left has lost so much credibility over immigration, etc. that given the way polling is going, they won't qualify for the run-off. This would be like if the Democrats had suddenly lost so much credibility over immigration, that they couldn't muster enough support to get a Democrat on the ballot for President.

    Anyway, the the two candidates that were likely to make the run-off were Fillon and Le Pen. Polling was such that Le Pen (far-right, anti-immigrant party) would win the first round but that Fillon would trounce her in the run off.

    However, Fillon has just been busted in a major corruption scandal. He got his family a bunch of fake jobs. He probably won't survive the first round.

    They've still got Marine Le Pen losing by a 2-1 margin in the run off, but I suspect support for Le Pen is under polled just like it was for Trump. I wouldn't bet against Le Pen at this point like I wouldn't bet against the Patriots.

    1. *Hordes popcorn for the French fireworks*

    2. Having just superficial knowledge of the French situation, I'd say it is likely Fillon will win if he makes it to the second round against Le Pen (it would be a repeat of the 2002 election, wherein the Socialists endorsed the Republicans), but things might be more unpredictable if its Macron vs Le Pen, since, unlike Fillon, Macron is a vocal supporter of immigration and the EU, which would offer a clear contrast of visions at a time when support for both the EU and immigration to France are weakening.

  40. A few days ago, several regular comment posters said they'd had enough, and were leaving, never to return.

    I haven't decided to leave COMPLETELY, but... $.02 worth. For a long time I thought Soave was merely "mostly useless" but after he did his little hit job on Tillerson, he can go DIAF. He comes up much too short in the "free minds and free markets" department to be taken seriously by the likes of me. For that matter, TDS has made many of the writers' tenuous grasp on free market libertarianism all too obvious. For all the jokes and jibes about "cosmotarianism" I really think most of of the staff have been completely assimilated by the Beltway Hive Mind. Suderman's comment about how he doesn't know anybody but NGO parasites, beltway liberals/writers/lobbyists/wonks and Hill staffers tells me as much as I need to know about him. He's just as far out in the TDS weeds as Tim Egan or Krugabe.

    Dalmia's tweets are... self-explanatory.

    It's not my magazine. It's not my blog. But, if you turn Road and Track into organic gardening weekly, don't be surprised if people start cancelling their [DRINK!] subscriptions en masse.

    And- as reason writers and articles get cross posted to places like the Daily Beast and Vox and HuffPo for all I know, Gresham's Law (internet commenter edition) will take effect.

    And besides, I have shit to attend to.

    1. And besides, I have shit to attend to.

      Lookit Brooks here with his fancy I have to wear pants to work job.

    2. Do you have a link to the Tillerson article?

  41. And I bookmarked that Steam link. Thanks.

  42. Do you have a link to the Tillerson article?

    As I recall it was on a weekend, a few weeks ago. The same sort of moronic "OMFG Not of The Body! He worked for an international KKKorporashun! He's not a card carrying of the noble Washington Mandarin Class! He'll sell us out to the highest bidder!" shrieking you could find at the Nation.

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