Reason Roundup

Homeland Security Seizes Another Sex Worker Website: Reason Roundup

Plus: Trump gets caught talking cash payoffs, Claire McCaskill's cronyism is uncovered, and the Outrage-Industrial Complex comes for Rick and Morty.

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collage of screenshots from Flawless Escorts website

The feds have killed another sex worker website. Federal prosecutors announced Tuesday that they had seized the website FlawlessEscorts.com and arrested two of its operators, Brandon Martin and Tameko Lindo. The pair are charged with money laundering and conspiracy to commit money laundering, which are the Justice Department's go-to charges for sexually oriented entrepreneurs that they can't get on other charges.

Prostitution is not illegal at the federal level. But using the mail or interstate commerce to promote it will put you in violation of the still-very-much-used White Slavery Act (now better known as the Mann Act) or the Travel Act. And if you accept or use any money from said promotion, that's money laundering. If you ever talk about that with anyone else, that's conspiracy to commit money laundering. In other words, charging people with money laundering can be a way to get around the fact that petty vice crimes are supposed to be left to states.

In this case, Martin, Lindo, "and others known, and unknown," are accused of conducting or attempting to conduct financial transactions while "knowing that the property involved…represented the proceeds of some form of unlawful activity." The core of the matter is that Lindo and Martin allegedly ran "an escort service" that "utilized various bank accounts" to deposit earnings and then used money in this accounts to continue operation of the business.

The case was a joint operation of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the New York City Police Department.

Martin and Lindo are not accused of "sex trafficking," nor anything violent or involving minors. They are not accused of defrauding the women who worked for Flawless Escorts or of taking an unreasonable cut of their profits. The examples of horrific "rules" imposed on escorts were that they should "travel with multiple outfits and lingerie" and supplies that include candles and fresh towels.

But this is the kind of benign thing the federal government, including the Department of Homeland Security, is increasingly spending its time on—taking down, one by one, any site that lets sex workers use the internet to attract and arrange appointments with clients.

This case started when a Mexican woman was detained and questioned at the Dallas/Forth Worth airport. She said she worked for two escort services, including Flawless Escorts. An investigation soon found Flawless Escort ads posted on the sex marketplace eros.com (which may explain HSI's raid of Eros headquarters last fall). Cops also determined that the site was hosted by "a particular cloud computing company located in the Southern District of New York."

Under the new law FOSTA, this cloud computing company could be guilty of a federal crime for knowingly facilitating prostitution advertising. But for now, at least, law enforcement has chosen to leave web hosting companies alone.

FlawlessEscorts.com screenshot

As of now, Martin and Lindo are imprisoned and the American website for Flawless Escorts has been taken down. Flawlessescorts.com.au is still functioning.

Apparently auditioning for the role of comic-book cop, U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said in a statement that "the fatal flaw in Martin and Lindo's alleged scheme was their underestimation of law enforcement's ability to detect and halt their illicit activities."

FREE MARKETS

Everyone is trying to teach Donald Trump economics…and everyone is failing.

For the most part, Trump's party seems OK with that. "Once upon a time," writes Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin, "Republicans warned against government meddling in the markets, picking winners and losers in the economy." But "no more, it seems."

FREE MINDS

Today in toxic and performative hissy-fits… People are angry at a Netflix series no one has seen yet, because it might be body-shaming. People are also angry at a short Dexter parody video that no one has seen in almost decade, because it comes from Dan Harmon, (liberal) creator of the popular TV show Rick and Morty, and this was yet another chance for scolds on the other side to try to score points. People are terrible. Moving on…

CORRUPTION WATCH

McCaskill milks political clout to get money for her husband. Businesses tied to Joseph Shepherd, the husband of Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), have taken in more than $131 million in federal subsidies since she was elected to Congress, according to a new investigation from the Kansas City Star. McCaskill was elected in 2006. That year, her husband's income from real estate that relies on federal subsidies was somewhere between $1,608 and $16,731. Last year, these investments netted Shepherd between $365,374 and $1,118,158.

QUICK HITS

NEXT: Brickbat: Black Market Goods

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  1. Everyone is trying to teach Donald Trump economics…and everyone is failing.

    Can’t teach the master.

    1. Hello.

      “But, for better or for worse, the Second Amendment – sigh – does protect a right to carry a firearm in public for self-defense. Sigh.”

      /sad trombone.

      1. Heh now I’m reading that in Debbie Downer’s voice.

  2. The return of the men’s rights movement?

    THANK you. I’ve been oppressed by the lesser gender long enough.

    1. I got a feeling Mrs. Fist does not put up with any of such nonsense.

      1. It’s a constant struggle to be THE pants-wearer!

  3. Everyone is trying to teach Donald Trump economics…and everyone is failing.

    Hey, Trump knows about bankruptcy.

    1. Everyone deserves a fresh start.

    2. But not casinos

  4. Replacement Migration: Is It a Solution to Declining and Ageing Populations?
    United Nations projections indicate that over the next 50 years, the populations of virtually all countries of Europe as well as Japan will face population decline and population ageing. The new challenges of declining and ageing populations will require comprehensive reassessments of many established policies and programmes, including those relating to international migration.

    Focusing on these two striking and critical population trends, the report considers replacement migration for eight low-fertility countries (France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, United Kingdom and United States) and two regions (Europe and the European Union). Replacement migration refers to the international migration that a country would need to offset population decline and population ageing resulting from low fertility and mortality rates.

    1. THE RISE OF THE SWEDEN DEMOCRATS
      We’ve repeatedly been told that the influx of refugees would be a win for the economy, that among the Syrian refugees were plenty of doctors and engineers. We’ve been told that the Afghan migrants would save the welfare state, as an influx of low-skilled labour would help take care of our elderly. But the reality has been quite different. All the rhetoric was just an insult to voters’ intelligence.

      Politicians seem to assume that the public are too dim or prejudiced to discuss migration rationally. A few weeks ago, Joakim Ruist, who has researched the costs around accepting refugees, was asked (on state television, no less) whether he had considered how his research might be exploited in the elections. Apparently, it’s wrong to present facts if they paint the wrong picture, or could be used by the wrong people.

      1. Facts can be racist. It’s the newtruth.

    2. United Nations projections indicate that over the next 50 years, the populations of virtually all countries of Europe as well as Japan will face population decline and population ageing.

      And as we all know, 50 year projections are always accurate and trends never, ever change.

      It’s both refreshing and a little scary though that the Obamatard socialist left is gradually becoming more and more open about their desire to “fundamentally transform” America and really all of advanced first world society.

      1. Japan is dead. That’s the future that immigration restrictionists will bring about

        1. Fewer people, less carbon emissions.

          1. So Gaia will be pleased too

        2. Japan has been an isolated, xenophobic, closed, slow growing society for most of its entire history, so this isn’t new at all.

          But you’re right that Japan would rather see their people and culture go completely extinct than allow it to be “fundamentally transformed” into a disgusting cultural third world hellhole like modern Mexico / Central America / the Middle East, etc.

          And with good reason in my opinion. I don’t go for the politically correct bullshit that all cultures and people and equal, and I never will either. And frankly, if the Japanese do eventually go extinct one day many years from, so what? Ultimately that’s their decision to make. Not mine, and certainly not yours.

          1. America transforms immigrants- not the other way around. I’m not being PC, I’m speaking from experience

            1. The America that transformed immigrants isn’t the same America we have today and neither are the immigrants. Past performance is no guarantee of future performance.

              And immigrants absolutely transformed America. America in 1950 was not anything the same country it was in say 1850 before the influx of Southern and Eastern European immigrants.

            2. Nowhere near as true today to the extent that it was in the past, primarily because of the politically correct leftist bullshit and the welfare state of today that didn’t used to exist back then.

  5. ‘Crying Nazi’ pleads guilty to assault in Charlottesville; banned from Virginia

    A self-professed white nationalist involved in violence at last year’s rally in Charlottesville, Virginia pleaded guilty to assault and battery Friday, prosecutors said.

    Christopher Cantwell was arrested after August’s “Unite the Right” rally. Cantwell, who was featured in a Vice News documentary about the demonstrations, became known as the “crying Nazi” after posting an emotional video when an warrant was issued for his arrest.

    https://goo.gl/dAvgsS

    1. 12 months for assault and battery and permanently being banned from a state?

      1. My mistake: “However, he was required to leave Virginia within eight hours and not return for five years.”

        Ah, much better. Move along all three of the civil libertarians that still exist in this country. Nothing to see here

        1. It is indeed interesting that banishment has not caught on as a penalty. I’m not sure I like the idea–though ancaps sure as fuck do!

        2. Ugh, I am so torn here….

    2. I am that Socialist Nazi will attend your Democratic Party conventions, so dont worry.

      1. Like all Nazis he is a Trump-tard Republican, you moron.

        Not all Republicans are racist but all racists are Republicans.

        1. You two both realize that the “crying Nazi” once identified as a “libertarian”?

          1. Gillespie says he’s a Libertarian too. Does not make him so.

        2. “Not all Republicans are racist but all racists are Republicans.”

          Who supports racial quotas, you slimy piece of shit?

        3. Not sure what he is. For a while there he touted himself as a libertarian, but then started making other libertarians uncomfortable because of his violent rhetoric that slowly turned more and more overtly racist. So he was disavowed by libertarians and became what he is today. He could just be mentally unstable or maybe even some kind of agent provocateur or something.

        4. All Nazis are Socialists, that’s for sure.

  6. In other words, charging people with money laundering can be a way to get around the fact that petty vice crimes are supposed to be left to states.

    Take money out of the equation. Time to go to a barter system for sex. Oh, wait, that’s just dating.

  7. For the most part, Trump’s party seems OK with that. “Once upon a time,” writes Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin, “Republicans warned against government meddling in the markets, picking winners and losers in the economy.” But “no more, it seems.”

    Jennifer Rubin pulling “Once upon a time” comments?

    Seriously?

    HER?

    Yeah, let’s play that game. What are her views on the Iran deal? US Embassy in Jerusalem?

    1. JR is a reliable conservative who (gasp!) is not fooled by the Con Man.

      1. Shreek in 2015, Rubin is a racist who wants war with Iran.

        Shreek today, Rubin is a reliable conservative.

        Just because you are retarded doesn’t mean the rest of us are.

        1. TDS causes great turmoil inside Lefties. They never know each day, who is the good guy and who is the bad gal.

          They are sure that that Trump is the enemy to their Socialist agenda.

      2. Nah, there are principled conservatives who oppose Trump without contradicting themselves constantly from the past two years.

        Pro-tip: neocons like Rubin are most worried that Trump won’t invade another country. That’s why they praise him endlessly when he bombs Syria and Afghanistan

        1. Everyone else is afraid we can’t use immigrants to kick the demographic can down the road a bit for Social Security and Medicare. Warfare/welfare.

          1. Immigration will probably save both programs, if that’s what we’re interested in doing.

            Neocons only care about immigration so long as they can bomb them on the way in. You eliminate that and they’re not interested in talking anymore.

            1. Neocons should have more faith in the greatness of America! You don’t need to bomb a country into the stone age to get them to want to come her!

              1. *Come here, of course. Unfortunately my typo was too syntactically nonsensical to make a good joke out of.

                1. I got your point and you’re right. But, I think “bombing other countries” is something they care more about than immigration.

            2. Immigration will save neither. The same people who want the immigrants also want voters for government programs, not voters for tax cuts. Nothing that happened immigration wise at the turn of the last century matters given the political bent of those demanding more immigration today.

              1. Agree to disagree. I see your point, but just like other immigrant groups assimilated within two generations and became less reliable pro-state voters, the immigrants today will do the same.

                This is not to say that I believe in open borders, but it is hard to deny that America’s liberal immigration policies (which remain the most liberal in the world) have benefited us economically and demographically.

                1. I need to keep taking a deep, wide look at the whole immigration and nationalism thing–both in American history and more abstactly at the world. So much to understand. To take just one immediate and shallow example–why have Asian-Americans been getting worse in their voting patterns?

                  1. They are turned off by xenophobia and China bashing.
                    They realize that they are still a racial minority, and Japanese internment is still in recent memory. While that was done by a Democrat, the similar rhetoric that led to that internment is coming from the right.

                    If you bash Asia, don’t expect support from Asians.

              2. Yes, Longtorso. Some more collectivizing please.

    2. You’re saying that she can’t be right about economics because she’s been wrong on foreign policy.

      1. He is saying she is a craven idiot who says whatever suits her employers. Whether she is right or wrong about anything is purely by accident.

      2. I am saying that if ANYBODY will criticize others for changing their views on issues, Rubin is the last one to have the legitimacy to make it. I have zero doubt if Trump supported her position du jour on this, she would oppose it,

        1. I guess in my mind, any Republican that claims that the party has supported free trade doesn’t know much about history. It’s kind of like saying Republicans have always supported lower spending or smaller government. Their words say so, but their actions say no.

  8. Here’s the problem with the notion of “trolling the Left”…..

    http://www.twitter.com/washingtonpost…..0228787200

    …..they troll themselves

    “How can this be satire if John Stewart isn’t in the video?” the ‘journalist’ asked

    1. Do note that the favorite source for some writers, Vox, is perplexed by this too.

      http://www.twitter.com/ajchavar/statu…..3059169280

      “Comedy? How does that work?” A Voxsplainer

      1. Jokes about raping children are just cutting edge comedy and nothing anyone should ever be upset about. Making a satirical video of one of the dumbest politicians in the free world, however, is totally beyond the pale.

        This is what they are actually arguing.

        1. I bet you the same morons defending Gunn’s retarded comments – er, jokes – applauded Owen Benjamin (who actually makes jokes for a living) being terminated by Twitter and demonetized on youtube as well as Nick Di Paolo being fired from Sirius.

          Principles. You know?

          1. And by the way, Louis CK does pedo jokes better.

            1. Isn’t Louis CK’s entire act just him lusting after underage girls and then assuring us that he doesn’t do that with his daughters?

              1. No. His act is talking about how being a parent sucks.

            2. Louis CK has already been turned into MeToo roadkill. Picking over that carcass isn’t as entertaining as finding fresh meat for the outrage machine

              1. Louis CK has already been turned into MeToo roadkill.

                Not good enough! Deport his beaner ass back to Mexico if you ask me.

      2. I like the repeated references to the “bluechecks”. I guess those are the ruling class of Twitter?

  9. “We do not take lightly the problem of gun violence,” writes Judge Diarmuid O’Scannlain in a Tuesday ruling from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in Hawaii. “But, for better or for worse, the Second Amendment does protect a right to carry a firearm in public for self-defense.”

    They have the Bill of Rights in Hawaii, too?

    1. Begrudgingly.

    2. To bad we dont have a Hawaiian version of Rufus, so we can get a daily “Aloha”.

    3. In all honesty, getting rid of Hawaii would be more beneficial to the US than keeping it as a state. The only thing it’s good for these days is as a resort for the wealthy, and it’s not like there aren’t plenty of other islands in the Pacific that would work as mid-ocean fuel stops.

      1. Maybe we could make inroads on the National Debt by selling it to Japan.

        1. But if Japan owned Hawaii, where would they go on vacation and shoot guns?

  10. http://www.nbcnews.com/card/pe….._nn_tw_mtp

    Public sours on the FBI. More importantly, Republicans and Republican-leaning independents, who have historically been the FBI’s staunchest defenders sour on the FBI. There is a tremendous opportunity for Libertarians to convert people to their side on the subject of federal law enforcement and the need to limit it and do something about its overreach. Instead of taking this opportunity, reason is writing about the injustice of serial perjurers and civil rights violators losing their security clearances and carrying water for the intelligence community claiming that Trump is insufficiently warlike with Russia.

    Pathetic is the best description of reason’s behavior over the last few months.

    1. Honest student-athletes hardest hit.

    2. You are right. There could be a real chance to permanently radicalize the mainstream Right against this agency. Maybe even on this portion of the state apparatus–“the brave men and women, and dedicated career professionals, who work hard to keep us safe”–altogether, to change their whole way of thinking in a very profound fashion.

      1. Thing is, they were easily the biggest supporters. Now the FBI has few friends left,

        1. Except the entire left two-thirds (minus maybe a sliver on the extreme left) of the political spectrum. And they’re more in love than ever, which they always were.

    3. Libertarians will never win over republicans, regarding any topic. It’s politically astute of those republicans to hate the FBI now. In a few years later they will forget this.

      I find it very naive that you think this is an opportunity to “convert people to their side” when we make fun of the writers of Reason any time they mention the libertarian moment.

      1. Recent Democrats who support eliminating ICE, but only ICE, are different, though, because…..

        1. Curious the way the headlines read regarding that poll:
          “Pew poll: GOP sours on the FBI”
          GOP numbers on FBI: 49 pro, 44 against

          “Voters split on ICE as battle over agency rages”
          Sixty-nine percent of registered Republican voters view ICE positively, while 63 percent of Democrats feel negatively about ICE.

          Overall, ICE is viewed much more unfavorably than the FBI. ICE, overall, is viewed more negatively than FBI by Republicans. But the liberal news media can’t give support to Abolish ICE, so it’s presented as a partisan split.

      2. They seem to have come over to the Libertarian side on the FBI only to reason switch and start defending the FBI.

    4. Trump’s approval ratings with Republicans are at 90 percent, because the party’s rank and file finally accepted that it wouldn’t matter if Jesus Christ himself was President, the Democrats and the media were going to go after him with both barrels anyway. Literally nothing they do or say is going to matter because it’s now a given that the left never argues in good faith, and the NeverTrumpers like George Will are now seen as losers who think political martyrdom is a principle.

    5. I suspect that this is less of a principles change, and more of a principals change for the right. I suspect many of the Republicans still favor the FBI using their tactics against “bad guys.” The only reason they’re turning in this case is that they don’t see Trump as a bad guy. That being said, I don’t disagree with Reason’s apparent stance on this issue, either. They’ve apparently come to the conclusion that the ends justify the means on Trump.

      More important than the FBI, in my mind, is the ability to put FISA in the spotlight given its relevance in the Trump investigation. Nobody seems to be using this as a teachable moment. It’s surprising because one of the libertarian arguments against FISA in the first place was that it would be a political tool.

      1. That should have said… “That being said, I don’t disagree with your assessment of Reason’s apparent stance on this issue, either.”

  11. CNN has obtained an audiotape in which lawyer Michael Cohen talks with then-presidential-candidate Trump about using cash to buy the National Enquirer’s rights to a story about a former Playboy model’s alleged affair with Trump.

    Can anybody explain how this ISN’T covered by attorney-client privilege since nothing was remotely illegal?

    1. It is and whoever at DOJ leaked this should be fired. But hey, one boring conversation with a lawyer about a subject no one cares about gets leaked and the whole collusion thing is off the front pages.

      1. But, yeah, Trump should believe whatever the govt says on subjects, per Reason and “life long” Republicans.

      2. I for one, would much rather hear stories about banging hot women than colluding with Russians.

      3. DOJ didn’t leak it, you dope, Cohen did.

    2. Well, it’s not covered by attorney-client privilege now because Trump waived it…?…

      1. Now he didn’t. Not that I have seen.

          1. Seems odd that the LA Times sat on the video of that Obama speech for, well, going on 10 years now.

            And it had no attorney-client privilege at all.

            Hmmm.

            1. Well, yeah, no one is going to dispute that the bulk of the media is biased. You’d have to be an idiot to dispute it.

              That doesn’t mean that Trump didn’t waive attorney client privilege for political reasons.

              This is, though, another area where supposed “civil libertarians” have put “principals” well ahead of “principles” with regards to the FBI raid for a campaign finance violation. But, there are like three civil libertarians left in the country today.

      2. The press thinking it’s scandalous that Trump’s banged hot models, despite the fact that their own have no qualms about fucking their sources to get a story, shows just how deep into Clown World we’ve gone.

    3. I’m not sure we even get to attorney client privilege, damikesc. Didn’t the feds raid Comeys office and seize everything? The tape was leaked by somebody inside the DOJ, straight to CNN. So the next time you hear a US attorney claim they “cannot comment on an ongoing investigation”, ask them about this tape and why they are full of shit.

      1. “The tape was leaked by somebody inside the DOJ”

        The link states this:
        “The recording, which was provided to CNN by Cohen’s attorney Lanny Davis”

  12. But this is the kind of benign thing the federal government, including the Department of Homeland Security, is increasingly spending its time on?taking down, one by one, any site that lets sex workers use the internet to attract and arrange appointments with clients.

    If you can think of an easier way to pad their resumes, they’re all ears.

    1. I wonder how much investigative expertise and dogged determination it took for two elite agencies to search the web and discover a site as covert as “flawlessescorts.com.”

  13. Businesses tied to Joseph Shepherd, the husband of Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), have taken in more than $131 million in federal subsidies since she was elected to Congress…

    Why the fuck else do you think people bother getting elected to Congress?

    1. We should do Pelosi’s finances next…

    2. It’s what pickpocket politics is all about: voters get a small stipend in exchange for their vote so the elected gets access to the treasury to boost their family’s net worth. I found Bezmenov’s description of typical communism fairly instructive: he didn’t label it as a parallel structure [as textbook logic might lead some to think]. No – he called it a centralized “pyramid”.

  14. GM cuts 2018 outlook as Trump trade war drives up steel and aluminum costs

    GM cut full-year profit outlook to $6 per share from a range of $6.30 to $6.60 per share.
    GM’s second-quarter profits beat expectations.

    CNBC

    1. Pb worries about gm profits.

      1. So Butthole does NOT want America to fail?

        I get confused because one day he wants American companies to die and on another day he wants Americans companies to teach Trump a lesson.

  15. The WaPo Republican-splaining economics to Trumpians has got to be one of the more darkly humorous sign of the times.

    1. Trumpians are economic idiots.

      When will he finish up a simple blitareral FTA? Its been 18 months and nothing for the great “negotiator”. In Fact, the Dotard is making everything worse by the week.

      Wilbur Ross is a senile old bastard who can’t wake up. His economic team is filled with idiots like Peter Navarro.

      Gary Cohn was very good but he had to quit because no one would listen to him.

      1. If only Trumpians understood the principles of economics like thinking making everyone buy health insurance was the way to bring healthcare costs down.

        It must really suck being a retard.

      2. Fuck waiting for bilateral.
        He needs to stop piling on tariffs, stop creating new welfare programs to counter-act the impacts of his tariffs, and roll back every single tariff he has imposed.
        He can than start in on rolling back all the others he is able to.

        We’re seeing the damage tariffs and threatened tariffs do. How about we try the opposite for a change? See how we do with no tarif FS on trade to the US, regardless of what kind of damn-fool restrictions other countries place on their citizens?

        1. How about we try the opposite for a change? See how we do with no tarif FS on trade to the US, regardless of what kind of damn-fool restrictions other countries place on their citizens?

          That is what we have been doing since we gave China most preferred nation status even though they never once respected the conditions that should have come with that. And it hasn’t worked out very well for us.

          1. China is just a fucking giant sweat shop. They assemble iPhones there for about $10 each. The other $990 an iPhone X cost is realized elsewhere.

            1. Yes, we screw ourselves over so a few people can get rich enslaving the Chinese. Since you are a racist fuck who hates brown people, you think that is great.

            2. You mean evil profits? Like the profits at GM that you were worried about a minute ago?

            3. Two seconds of googling reveals that the iPhone X costs $370 in materials.

              1. Rhywun, you are messing up Butthole’s day of Lefty Narrative with facts.

              2. Two seconds of googling reveals that the iPhone X costs $370 in materials.

                So?

                The retail price is $999.99. The EVA (economic value added) in China is less than $20. We capitalists get the rest of that.

                Qualcomm, LG, Skyworks, Micron, etc.

                1. So what’s your point? Those jobs are awfully attractive to a population that was largely scratching in the dirt a couple decades ago.

                  1. My point is that the puny assembly fee China gets for iPhones is insignificant.

                    It is similar to the puny fee Nike pays Vietnam to stitch together a running shoe.

          2. I’m going to want to see some details to back that up.
            US tariffs hurt US consumers.
            Reducing or, better, removing, those tariffs make things better for consumers.
            No trade agreement necessary. No ‘level playing’ field fantasies.

            So how have reduced tariffs on China not worked out for ‘us’? Which ‘us’ are you talking about?

            1. Tariffs are not the only trade restrictions.

              Other trade restrictions have gone up. US companies suppressing free speech on the internet is one restriction.

              1. Are you for the government telling private companies how to manage their platforms?

                You have no rights on Facebook. You have no rights on Twitter. They could ban the word zebra if it was in their best interest.

                Or are you a secret communist?

                1. Facebook has been force to curb freedom of speech because of your Communist buddies in China.

                  FB is not that limiting of free speech in the USA because they dont have to be.

                  1. That affects us how? The proper response to that is to raise taxes on Americans because….profits?

  16. ‘…and this was yet another chance for scolds on the other side to try to score points. People are terrible. Moving on…’

    Moving on? Somehow I doubt that. I’m sure we’ll get 3 more articles this week about how ‘the right wing’ (why is it never ‘left wing’ or ‘the far left’?) shouldn’t be holding progressives to their own standards.

    1. Move on, nothing to see here.

  17. http://pjmedia.com/michaelwals…..diversity/

    Toronto discovers the joys of diversity and open borders.

    Toronto has been rattled by a string of violent incidents this year. In April, 10 people were killed and more than a dozen injured when a driver in a van ploughed into pedestrians on a city sidewalk. The following month, more than a dozen people were injured after a homemade bomb ripped through an Indian restaurant in May in nearby Mississauga. The year started with the arrest of alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur, now charged with the deaths of eight men, and the high-profile homicides of billionaires Barry and Honey Sherman.

    But police still have no idea why the Muslim guy who was surfing ISIS sites on the internet and who ISIS claims as one of their own shot all of those people. It is just a mystery. One of those things.

    1. That’s weird, because it’s hard to immigrate to Canada.

      1. Not if you fought for ISIS

  18. More charges have been brought in the NXIVM “sex trafficking” case.

    I have a feeling the air-quotes will eventually come off here.

    1. The whole thing seems to have been a bunch of adult women who were really into BDSM. I don’t see how a bunch of rich, bored women getting into playing slave with a bunch of freaks is sex trafficking. I am really having a hard time seeing how any of it was a crime. Maybe they committed theft or fraud if they took those women’s money. And maybe they extorted them once they got involved. I could see that. But I don’t see how it was sex trafficking or slavery in any ordinary sense of the terms.

      1. That whole story is bizarre. I guess what was is being alleged is they were running a stable of whores (unbeknownst to the whores themselves who thought they were just in a sex cult) and had a client list of people who had signed to get life advice for at least 5000.00 a pop. The reporting has been terrible and I ultimately think everyone walks. I had to read six different stories on it to just to kind of maybe get a handle on what the prosecution was alleging. The stories would say what they were charged with (racketeering, human trafficking and forced labor) and than would proceeded to state the facts and nothing they were stating was illegal, having a sex cult isn’t illegal, selling scam self help isn’t illegal and branding people who want to be branded also isn’t illegal.

        1. If your kink is being my sex slave and fucking other men on my command, I don’t see how it is a crime for me to charge other men for the pleasure or how you in any way didn’t consent to being a whore. I guess if they charged people for sex, that is pandering. But big deal? It is just another high profile brothel.

        2. I’ll reconsider if everyone says it was consensual. The things I’m hearing led me to believe otherwise.

        3. Blackmail is illegal. (I don’t think it really should be, but it is.)

  19. “California OKs $2.5 billion to build new dams, water storage projects”
    […]
    “The funding came from Proposition 1, a water bond approved by voters in November 2014, during California’s five-year drought. It is believed to be the largest commitment of state money to construct new dams and water storage projects in California since 1960, when voters approved a bond to build Oroville Dam and the State Water Project”
    http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/article/
    NE/20180724/NEWS/180729898

    CA’s “drought” was not caused by lack of rain, nor climate change. It was man-made. The state’s population has at least doubled since 1960, and this is the first real effort to increase water storage.
    In the interim, the money has gone to employee benefits (which are still un-funded) and moon beam’s choo-choo..

    1. I am stunned that they have enough brains left to do this.

      1. Perhaps they’ve finally given up on their water pipeline schemes.

    2. The drought in CA was absolutely man made due to the fact that the State stringently restricts increases in water and sewer bills. Which caused these enterprises to forgo capital development.

      Thanks for this.

      1. Agriculture uses multiple times the amount of water as urban uses, and pays far less for it.
        Until the drought multiple years with lower than average rainfall/snowpack that wasn’t a drought apparently, there was no regulation on groundwater use, so agriculture tapped groundwater freely, drying up that resource. In addition, agricultural use of water from the Sacramento River Delta was causing salt water intrusion, endangering that source of water.

        Urban water use is only relevant at the margins.

  20. Sasha Baron Cohen plays progressive developer who tells residents of Kingman, AZ that he is building a $380 million mosque in their town in hilarious trolling effort.

    https://youtu.be/BJpY7zQ6OHc

    His new show is painful in how it shows Americans.

    1. It does mock one type of Americans.

      It should be noted that RFRA and the accompanying RLUIPA law makes it impossible for a community to forbid the building of a religious site in their community. Progressives and some “libertarians” oppose RFRA and probably are unaware that RLUIPA even exists

    2. Yea, that will make people feel better about migrants.

    3. It is painful, to be sure.

      1. That is some great satire.

        ‘Borat’ is a modern day Alexis de Tocqueville. Borat sees Americans for what they are.

        1. Pure exploitation.

          1. Cultural appropriation.

        2. Just because Americans are nearly all smarter than you are, doesn’t give you the right to hate them. Most of the entire human race has a higher IQ than you do. You need to stop hating people because of your disability. It is not their fault.

        3. “‘Borat’ is a modern day Alexis de Tocqueville. Borat sees Americans for what they are.”

          The man is a scumbag just a little lower than you, turd.
          If he didn’t have someone to make fun of, he wouldn’t have an act.

      2. He’s bringing his “Ugly American” schtick to a new generation of admirers.

    4. I am sure the Muslims would love a bunch of Americans building towers blasting rock and roll 24/7 and splashing pig’s blood all over the roads leading in/out of the Mosque.

      If you really want to annoy people, its fairly easy.

    5. Sasha Baron Cohen plays progressive

      He really has to stretch for that role.

    6. There’s a good rum distillery in Kingman. Though 380 million dollars would be almost more than the town as a whole is worth. I can see why they’d be a little thrown off by someone building that out in the middle of NW AZ.

      1. Right, this was my thought. I’ve been to Kingman. The population is what, maybe 10,000 people? How large of a Muslim population could they possibly have?

        1. OK, apparently I was off by a factor of 3. 29,000 people in Kingman. Still. It would be odd to spend 380 million dollars on anything in Kingman.

    7. City council type meetings were way overdue for roasting. He hits all the trigger points/uses the right verbage – it’s just that the shiny new object is a mosque, not a walmart. With Sasha, you always get conflicted about whether you want to laugh out loud or smack the guy… he walks the thinnest line ever. Glad to see he’s still razor sharp.

  21. Vindication for Carter Page.

    Carter Page’s nightmare began exactly two years ago this week.

    On July 26, 2016, a reporter with the Wall Street Journal sent him a text, asking the then-Trump campaign advisor about his ties to Russia, including alleged meetings with Kremlin officials: he responded that the suggestion was “ridiculous.” But other media calls followed. Page, a Ph.D. and Naval Academy graduate, rebuffed the inquiries and continued to go about his business as a global energy financier.

    What Page did not know at the time is that?aside from unwittingly becoming the latest human slab tossed into the Clinton machine’s meat grinder?his own government was already watching him, perhaps even setting him up. As Team Clinton, the DNC, and the Obama White House ratcheted up the Trump-Russia collusion fairy tale before the presidential election, Page emerged as the villain. In October 2016, at the behest of Jim Comey’s FBI, a secret court gave the government permission to spy on Page. The surveillance lasted one year, during which time his personal and professional life imploded; he was the target of persistent media harassment and even death threats.

    1. Now, thanks to the partial release of documents submitted by the Justice Department to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court in 2016 and 2017, we know that Page is far from a villain: He was framed by Democratic Party operatives (with their own ties to Russia); had his constitutional rights stripped away by the government; was forced to testify before Congress, and to submit to questioning from the FBI and perhaps a special counsel; and endured painful, humiliating public scrutiny while most of the media ignored?even cheered?his plight.

      Two years later, he has not been charged with any crime.

      “This has been a big step forward for me,” Page told me by phone Monday night. “There’s a lot more transparency. But it now opens up additional questions about the crimes committed against American democracy.”

      That’s how Page, 47, approaches this saga. To him, the crux of the scandal isn’t how it has damaged him personally, but how top government officials violated the trust of the American people and compromised the constitutional foundation of the country.

  22. Real GDP growth (chart)

    https://goo.gl/WidJ4T

    Sick of hearing about the Dotard’s great effect on the economy. It is another lie.

    1. There has been one quarter of growth in 2018. The second quarter is predicted to be 4.5%. Obama never had a single quarter of growth over 4%. He is the first President in history with that distinction.

      You really will believe anything. You are just dumb as a fucking post. But you did at least cut and paste the talking point. And that is better than you usually do. You handlers, who have the worst job in the free world, must be proud.

      1. You’re a fucking idiot. Obama was sworn in during the worst economic climate since the 30s (that you Republicans left him).

        GDP was on this upward trajectory despite the Dotard and his protectionist bullshit.

        1. There was a single year of negative growth. The 1982 recession was much deeper than the 2009 one. And even if that was true, it ended by the end of 09. Obama had seven years of what should have been recovered but was instead the stagnation that always comes with big government socialism that he tried to enact. He is the worst President in generations and will forever be remembered as such.

          But the upside is that his incompetence did grave damage to the Democratic party that will likely take at least a generation to repair if it ever is repaired. So when you wake up every day utterly powerless and in the minority, we can all thank Obama for that. At least retards like you no longer have any influence. There is that.

          1. Bullshit. Americans lost $20 trillion of wealth in 2008. 1982 was just an ordinary recession.

            1. NO it wasn’t.. Unemployment was higher during the 82 recession. 7.5% at the height and growth contracted 1.9%. The difference was that growth after that was 4.6 and 7.3% the following two years. Obama never got above three percent in the seven years after the recovery began.

              I know you are retarded shreek. Just post the talking points. Stop tying to do more.

              1. John, the methodology is different over time. You can’t compare 82 vs. 08 issued numbers without recalibrating one set of data by putting it through the others mill. But 08 numbers are largely Clinton/Bush methods: throwing Obama into the mix is a third complication because within about a month of him taking office in 2009, GDP got fluffed up by adding patent research and a basket of other goodies into the mix. Absent that maneuver, the prior methodology would maybe have given him a few months of 2% growth, and the bulk of his tenure would be sub 1% numbers [maybe even negative in many instances]. It’s also worth pointing out that Harry Reid’s blocking the budget 5 years running helped skew Obama’s GDP by forcing the government to go back to the last known good budget… which contained the “stimulus” plan. Government spending gets counted as part of GDP as we know. Maybe we should change that, talking points or no talking points.

            2. If your position is true, Obama’s economy had nowhere to go but up. That being the case, his terrible GDP numbers are a huge indictment

            3. Americans lost $20 trillion of wealth in 2008.

              That was tulip-bulb wealth, not actual wealth.

          2. Because you’re an idiot John I am putting 2008 and 1982 into graph form that you might understand:

            https://goo.gl/imiymF

            1. Because you are a retard, stop comparing raw numbers and pretending like they matter. The economy was bigger in 2008.

              Not everyone is as dumb as you are.

              1. That is a Net Wealth graph. There was no loss of wealth in 1082. 2008? $20 trillion.

                Wealth is the object for a capitalist. If you were a capitalist you would know that.

                1. If fact, wealth increased in 1982.

                  1. Wealth did not increase in an economy that contracted by 1.9% you lying retard.

                    1. Wealth did not increase in an economy that contracted by 1.9% you lying retard.

                      The Fed says otherwise, you moron.

                      Look at the chart.

                    2. And…. John is gone, never to return to this line of questioning again.

                    3. Maybe because he was tired for owning Butthole again and having to repeat the same economic stuff over and over.

                      Buttplugger thinks Republicans caused the Great Recession in 2008 and Obama got the USA out of it in 2009.

        2. “That you Republicans left him”

          Tell me again how the housing bubble and housing crash was caused by the Republicans?

          1. Oh, you weren’t around here back then.

            Bush kept pumping up the housing market with government financing.

            He gave $10,000 to each first time home buyer in 2002. He protected the GSE Fannie/Freddie racket when congress tried to clip their wings (HR 1461) Those were just two things. The bubble was pumped up by him. There would have been a bubble anyway though – to a lesser extent.

            It was a big embarrassment for the H&R Republicans back then. They loved the Bushpigs.

            1. Remember, Bush inherited a bubble economy that was bursting from Clinton (the tech bubble) so I guess they thought they had to do something to prop up the economy.

              The primary culprits of the 2008-09 near-depression were, roughly in order:

              1. Alan Greenspan, serial bubble blower
              2. The TBTF banks, who gleefully encouraged too much lending and securitized the resulting loans and made tons of money spreading the contagion around the planet
              3. The smarter than us deregulators that wiped out Glass-Stegall in the late 90s. This was a bipartisan effort between Clinton and a Republican Congress.

              Bush (and Obama) were mostly just along for the ride.

              1. Glass Steagall was a non-factor.

                All it did was prevent I-banks from merging with commercial banks.

                The biggest failures were not from merged banks (Lehman, Bear, WaMiu, Wacovia, AIG and others)

      2. “There has been one quarter of growth in 2018. The second quarter is predicted to be 4.5%. Obama never had a single quarter of growth over 4%. He is the first President in history with that distinction.”

        Plus, Obo started from the bottom of a hole and managed to screw the economy for 8 years anyhow.

      3. Q4 2011: 4.6%
        Q2 2014: 4.6%
        Q3 2014: 5.2%

        Liar.

        http://www.statista.com/statis…..in-the-us/

    2. There are no “real growth” numbers available from the government anymore. GDP methodology has been tortured over several decades and is now only fit for the shredder. I think you’d have to go back to pre-Reagan methods, as measured by GNP, which tracked reality better. Government now spends so much that any GDP report is worthless, but Trump’s “economy” [whatever it is] is threatened by his tariff scheme, and he needs an exit strategy.

    3. Oh, NOW shriek’s interested in “real GDP growth” with his best buddy no longer in office.

  23. “But, for better or for worse, the Second Amendment does protect a right to carry a firearm in public for self-defense.”

    “For richer, for poorer; in sickness and in health ….”

  24. Second quarter growth forecast at 4.5%

    The GDPNow model estimate for real GDP growth (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in the second quarter of 2018 is 4.5 percent on July 18, unchanged from July 16. After the Federal Reserve Board of Governors’ industrial production release on Wednesday, July 17, modest increases in the nowcasts of second-quarter real consumer spending growth and second-quarter real private fixed investment growth were offset by a decrease in the nowcast of second-quarter real private inventory investment. The nowcast of second-quarter real residential investment growth inched down from 0.4 percent to 0.0 percent after this morning’s new residential construction release from the U.S. Census Bureau.

    http://www.frbatlanta.org/cqer…..dpnow.aspx

    All together kids, and be sure to say it loud and with a little drool running down the side of your mouth, TRADE WAR!!

    1. As a result of moving up investments to beat the tariffs. GDP from Q3 moved into Q2. Look for an ugly Q3 number.

  25. DHS? Talk about mission drift. Where the hell is the FBI – do they do anything anymore? If I remember there raison d’etre… DHS was brought into existence because George Bush was too lazy to craft a fix for dealing with intersections of foreign intelligence and domestic law enforcement and could not think of a single recommendation to congress for dealing with the existing firewall between law enforcement and the CIA. But wait… what firewall? We are still seeing the FBI tap dance around a multi year counter intelligence investigation [in search of a crime] birthed with unvetted/unverified materials in a circus the left could name the “grand collusion conspiracy”. I’m thinking we need a do-over for the aforementioned Bush shortcomings, along with the cracked foundations laid by a certified imbicile mr. Chertoff. Broom DHS off the map, and start over with a clean sheet of paper.
    I’ll tell you where this statist garbage is headed: the government is looking for a scheme to license website operators just like they did to radio operators with FCC licenses. DHS has nothing better to do.

    1. I’ll tell you where this statist garbage is headed: the government is looking for a scheme to license website operators just like they did to radio operators with FCC licenses. DHS has nothing better to do.

      That is a pretty good guess about where this is headed.

    2. The FBI is not part of DHS.
      Multiple people are guilty of crimes in the Mueller investigation. Watergate had not yet proceeded as far as fast as Mueller.
      FCC licenses were due to limited space on the radio spectrum. Websites have no such restriction. Your tinfoil hat is loose.

  26. “Once upon a time,” writes Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin, “Republicans warned against government meddling in the markets, picking winners and losers in the economy.” But “no more, it seems.”

    Yeah, and if you had paid any attention to what the GOP did rather than what they said, you’d know they were just as much socialist believers in Top Men and central planning as the Dems. Or the Politburo or the Central Committee. It’s just a matter of who gets to sit in the driver’s seat. If nothing else, did you not notice the goalpost-moving on ending Obamacare? How fast they went from “repealing” Obamacare to “fixing” Obamacare? Call it what you want, it’s socialized medicine and we’re all socialists now.

    1. And both parties were always willing to agree to appalling environmental and labor restrictions as part of trade agreements. What is called free trade is always just a crony capitalist scheme that does nothing but benefit entrenched interests at the expense of everyone else.

    2. Everyone in politics is rotten. Everyone.

    3. He Who Must Not Be Named is a socialist, too – notice how he talks all the time about other countries taking “our” money and “our” jobs and ripping “us” off. If Walmart buys a billion dollars worth of shirts from China, isn’t that Walmart’s money? But of course, like Bernie Sanders, he’s not an international socialist, he’s a nationalist socialist. So, sure, that’s Walmart’s money, but Walmart has a duty to serve the interests of society, the common good. The common good, naturally, is defined by the government. And after all, government is just the things we choose to do together. Notice that once “we” decide to do things together, “you” don’t have a choice to decline to participate. That would be that “extreme individualism” Hillary spoke of, people who would prefer to be left out of “our” big plans for “us”. There’s a name for a system whereby individuals are allowed to own private property only insofar as they use their property in the interests of the State, and there’s a reason certain people were and are attracted to the ideology despite its connection to some rather unsavory characters back about 75 years or so ago. Thank God we have Antifa to defend us against this sort of collectivist thinking that invariably leads to silencing dissent with violence and repression.

      1. Ouch.

        Bernie and Trump do have a lot in common.

        Bernie is an idiot protectionist too. He just wants to “protect” workers and unions.

        Bernie hates Obama and his free trade TPP too. Bernie hated Obama’s entire economic philosophy of cutting deficits.

        Fuck them both.

        1. TPP is not free trade.

        2. TPP is managed trade, NOT free trade.

          NAFTA is managed trade, NOT free trade.

    4. Much of the enthusiasm for free trade (GATT, NAFTA, the EU) was about the end of the Cold War, and the Republicans were historically bigger champions of free trade than the Democrats.

      Have we completely forgotten the regular fights over China’s “Most Favored Nation” status? Much of that was about opposition from blue collar workers and unions, which were the backbone of the Democratic party.

      To the extent that President Clinton backed free trade, it was a betrayal of the unions and his own party.

      To the extent that the Republican party has backed Trump on trade, we’re mostly talking about Trump Democrats–white, blue collar workers in rust belt states that won Trump the nomination via open primaries and gave him Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio, and western Pennsylvania against Hillary in the general election. I’m not convinced that constituency’s support for Trump on trade represents a sea change in the Republican party any more than the same demographic voting for Reagan meant that Reagan Democrats from the rust belt were now permanent members of the Republican party.

    5. Trump isn’t typical of Tea Party Republicans or the Republican establishment on trade–both of which opposed him and probably will again as soon as the midterms are over. The fact is that we’re three months away from the midterms, and the midterms are a referendum on Trump. Of course the Republicans will hesitate to criticize him at this point. Once the midterms are over, all that changes. If the Republicans lose the House, the Senate, or both, the Republicans will turn on Trump like a rented pit bull.

      1. If the Republicans lose the House, the Senate, or both, the Republicans will turn on Trump like a rented pit bull.

        Trump is still and will continue to be very popular with Republicans. So, I doubt that will happen. It might but it would constitute the Republicans committing suicide as a party.

        1. Well, let’s be clear about who we’re talking about when we talk about “Republicans”.

          Trump is popular with the Republican grass roots–especially those that now identify as Republican (because of Trump) but voted the way the unions told them to in the past.

          Trump is not as popular with Republicans in the House or senate. If and when Trump loses the House or the senate (and that’s the way they’ll sell it), the Republicans there will turn on him on various issues.

          Trump’s appeal to the UAW, AFL-CIO, United Steel Workers, Teamsters, et. al.–and I mean their workers rather than their leadership–is not typical of Republicans generally, certainly not on the issue of trade.

          I suppose it’s possible that Trump could change the party forever like Ronald Reagan didn’t, but I wouldn’t bet on that at this point. The next Democrat president will win because he or she courted the white, blue collar vote in rust belt swing states–instead of hating on them for being stupid, Christian, and white.

          It remains to be seen whether someone can win the Democrat nomination without hating on white, blue collar workers in the Midwest more than the other Democrat candidates, but if and when another Democrat manages to win, it’ll be because they managed to do that.

          1. This has all happened before:

            “Reagan Democrats” no longer saw the Democratic party as champions of their working class aspirations, but instead saw them as working primarily for the benefit of others: the very poor, feminists, the unemployed, African Americans, Latinos, and other groups.”

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reagan_Democrat

            That was written about the Reagan Democrats of 1980 and 1984, but it might just as well have been written about Trump Democrats today.

            When the leadership of the Democratic party becomes overwhelmed by identity groups (add in LGBTQI+ and environmentalists this time), the white, blue collar, middle class in the rust belt looks to a Republicans.

            In the case of the Democratic Party today, hell, Hillary Clinton went so far as to call the white, blue collar, middle class “deplorables”. The white, blue collar, middle class of the rust belt know when they’re hated by the party that’s supposed to represent them, and the identity group leadership that’s running the Democratic party today thinks that if they can’t hate white people, Christians, blue collar AGW skeptics, et. al. for being white, blue collar, Christian, etc., then there’s no point in being involved in politics.

            They may need to lose to Trump again before they “get it”.

            1. They are never going to get it Ken. The story of the last ten years is the story of the radicalization of the center left. The center left is caught in a vicious trap where they are forced to show their tolerance and thus their self worth by repeating whatever the left demands they repeat. They can never go back at this point.

          2. The next Democrat president will win because he or she courted the white, blue collar vote in rust belt swing states–instead of hating on them for being stupid, Christian, and white.

            So you are saying there will never be another Democratic President? That is a bold prediction but one that might be correct.

            1. After another six years of Trump, and we may come to see another Bill Clinton emerge.

              It’s hard to imagine a Democrat today executing an effective retard just to prove that he’s tough on crime like Clinton did, but it’ll be somebody like that.

              They were stuck in the Jimmy Carter era once before. It took a lot of losing for them to get it, but they finally did. It took guys like Clinton and Al Gore, who was campaigning against pornography, etc.

              The one argument I find compelling is that the Democrats may come to believe that immigration is making it so the white, blue collar, workers in swing states won’t be as important as they used to be. I think there’s a lot of wishful thinking in that. As America becomes more Latino, Latinos become more like other Americans. And there isn’t anything about being Latino that makes them invulnerable to middle class economic concerns. As more of them become increasingly wealthy, they’re more likely to split on economic issues and income level–just like other Americans.

              1. If we’ll vote like middle class whites as we make it why aren’t we voting like poor whites now?

                1. I suspect immigration is a more important issue with poor Mexicans.

                  I suspect fifth generation suburban Mexican-Americans vote like fifth generation suburban Italian-Americans.

                  Is it controversial to suggest that Mexicans become more Americanized as they become more American?

      2. … like a rented pit bull.

        Oh no. I’m going to have to look at James Carville again?!? The horror.

  27. House Democrats erupted into chants of “USA” as Rep. Steny Hoyer called on lawmakers to “rise above pandering to party and Putin.”

    This is what I mean when I say that all patriotic Americans must vote Democrat from now on. It’s no longer a matter of acknowledging that Democrats have consistently better positions than Republicans on all the major domestic policy issues. While that’s indeed true, the modern GOP’s problems are even more severe ? they’re pawns of a hostile foreign power that hacked our election. Anyone who loves this country has an obligation to oppose the Republican Party at all levels of government, at least until the respectable David Frum / Jennifer Rubin wing regains control.

    #TrumpRussia
    #Resist
    #BlueWave
    #USA

    1. I’m old enough to remember when blindly trusting the intelligence community, accusing your political opponents of “treason”, and opportunistic displays of patriotism to justify aggression was mocked.

    2. “until the respectable David Frum / Jennifer Rubin wing regains control.”

      Get back to work, Suderman.

  28. We do not take lightly the problem of gun violence,” writes Judge Diarmuid O’Scannlain in a Tuesday ruling from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in Hawaii. “But, for better or for worse, the Second Amendment does protect a right to carry a firearm in public for self-defense.”

    “…the Second Amendment does protect a right to carry a firearm in public for self-defense for any reason.”

    FTFY

  29. Woman finds cougar in home

    “When I made noise, she woke up and looked startled so I consciously raised my frequency, gazed lovingly into her eyes, and communicated using feline-speak eye blinking to calm her. I sent the animal telepathic pictures of routes out of the house and up into the hills. A video posted to her Facebook shows the mountain lion leaving its place behind the couch and appearing to exit the house as drumming echoes in the background.”

    1. The poor thing probably left because of the awful drumming and the stink of patchouli in the air.

      Damned hippies.

  30. Whole post is a shit show, from top to bottom.

    Congratulations, I guess.

    1. Ken have you commented on Trump’s ag gift? Is this just routine political maneuvering, or does it suggest he has a tolerance (and plans) for protectionism as long-term normalcy?

      1. Here’s what I wrote eleven days ago–long before Trump announced that “gift” to the farmers:

        “There’s this thing called the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC). It’s part of the Department of Agriculture. Their job is to provide nonrecourse “loans” (nonrecourse means farmers don’t need to repay it) in exchange for selling their crops to the CCC and planting less in the future. The CCC then sells that produce for a loss . . . if prices aren’t too low. The CCC loses around $17 billion a year already. As prices plummet–in response to tariffs–we can expect the CCC to get more involved than they have been in a long time. Within its operations, the CCC can set a floor on prices, restrict supplies, and that will ultimately mean higher prices.

        I don’t see any good reason to think this won’t play out like it has so many other times since the CCC was created during the Great Depression. We just haven’t heard much about the CCC since China joined the WTO because demand for produce from a billion former Chinese peasants turning into hungry consumers has put so much upward pressure on prices over the last 17 years.”

        https://reason.com/archives/201…..nt_7362681

        1. I stand by that. This is predictable–especially in the midst of a midterm where control may be decided with a margin of only one senator. Agricultural states dominate the senate, and I doubt anyone from either party will stand in the way of shelling out more money to farmers in the middle of a battle for the senate like that.

          1. There are several vulnerable Democrats in farming states, if you’re thinking only about the Senate. IN, OH, MO. No doubt that plays into the Republican strategy here. If they can pick off one of those 3 states, plus one of WV, ND, or MN, they’re going to be pretty certain to hold the Senate, given that they are only defending 8 seats and all but NV in states that Trump won.

            As an aside, I never thought that I would see Texas and California listed as battleground states this time around. Strange times we’re living in here.

            1. California has exactly a zero chance of electing a Republican in November. Not practically, exactly zero. There is no Republican on the ballot, and write ins are not allowed.

              I guess there may be a ballot replacement procedure if one of them is exposed as a pedophile or something, but I don’t think that’s part of the law.

              1. Thanks for clarifying Happy. I haven’t really been following California politics and was only responding to the graph in my link. Sounds like it’s outdated or just plain wrong.

  31. Are escorts really as hot as the pictures claim?

    Asking for a friend.

    1. Fraud is aggression. If you find that one of the Flawless Escorts indeed has a flaw, the NAP permits you to burn their servers to the ground.

    2. You know why the lights are kept low in strip clubs?

  32. The return of the men’s rights movement

    Good god ENB, why even link to something that hateful and stupid?

    Here, some light education on the incel subject. While you’re at it, you might recommend your friend at WaPo that authored it watch too.

  33. OT: Oh Shit! Trump’s tough position got the EU to crack first.
    Reuters Trump secures EU concessions to avoid trade restrictions

    I wonder which reason staff member will do this article?

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