Reason Roundup

Bill de Blasio Exits the 2020 Democratic Presidential Race

Plus: The UAW is on strike, Josh Hawley meets with Mark Zuckerberg, and more...

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New York Mayor Bill de Blasio has bid farewell to his presidential campaign. The longshot candidate withdrew from the Democratic primaries Friday morning, admitting on MSNBC that "it's just not my time."

This should not be surprising news, given that de Blasio is one of the most widely reviled political figures around. Unlike virtually every other Democrat running for candidate, de Blasio became more unpopular as he became better known. He's despised in New York City, even by Democrats.

The mayor is known for being a nanny's nanny: He wants local governments to arbitrarily ban pretty much everything that offends progressives. He proposed a federal tax on robots, wants to eliminate classes for gifted children in the name of equality (Harrison Bergeron alert), called for breaking up corporations "when they're not serving our democracy," and even tried to rid New York City of ice cream trucks in the name of "public safety."

Of the campaign's end, de Blasio writes:

This campaign has been a profound experience for me. I saw America in full—not as it appears on Twitter and cable news, where we're constantly shown a country hamstrung by our differences and unable to tackle the problems we face. We have more in common than we realize—and more and more of us across the country are overcoming our divisions and standing up for working people….

I'm going to redouble my efforts to improve the quality of life of everyday New Yorkers, proving that policies like guaranteed paid personal time off can work on a grand scale. I'm going to continue implementing universal health care and a Green New Deal in the nation's largest city. And I promise I'll fight for New Yorkers and workers everywhere to ensure there's an actual plan to protect their livelihoods from being automated out of existence.

President Donald Trump, the Twitter Troll-in-Chief, lamented that NYC is "devastated he's coming home!"

I am, as it happens, writing this roundup from New York City. Yesterday I asked a cab driver what he thought about de Blasio. The driver, a Democrat and Clinton voter, did not care for the mayor. I asked what he thought about de Blasio running for president. "He's running for president?" the driver responded with apoplectic shock. "Really?"

No longer, my friend. No longer.


FREE MINDS

Sen. Josh Hawley (R–Mo.) met with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and essentially told him to break up the company.

Earlier this week, Hawley dismissed his libertarian critics and accused them of being "enamored with power."


FREE MARKETS

The United Auto Workers' strike against General Motors entered its fifth day Friday. According to The Wall Street Journal:

The work stoppage is among America's largest private-sector walkouts in years. Analysts estimate it is costing GM $50 million to $100 million a day in lost profits. GM's competitors—Ford Motor Co. and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV—have much riding on the outcome of this stalemate. The UAW will use the contract agreed to at GM as a template for talks with the other two U.S. car makers.

It's a confrontation that has been building for years, with the two big institutions, both under acute pressures, driven by diverging goals. Negotiations continue this week. Even after a contract is eventually reached, the relationship may have permanently shifted.

On one side is GM's Chief Executive Mary Barra, who is trying to shed the auto maker's long-held reputation for ignoring problems. She is aiming to show Wall Street that today's GM is leaner and more assertive than the one that collapsed into bankruptcy a decade ago.

On the other side is the UAW, an organization that once ruled the auto industry but is now confronting declines and dissent from within—fueled in part by the popularity of President Trump among its members.

As U.S. auto industry sales slow, following a historic run, both sides are trying to lock in a new labor agreement that will protect their respective livelihoods in the years ahead.


QUICK HITS

  • Rudy Giuliani sounded confused about whether he had demanded an investigation of Joe Biden's Ukrainian ties.
  • Canada's Liberal Party is standing by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in the wake of his blackface scandal.
  • A U.S. drone missile intended for an ISIS hideout instead hit 30 pine nut farmers, killing them. "The attack on Wednesday night also injured 40 people after accidentally targeting farmers and laborers who had just finished collecting pine nuts at mountainous Wazir Tangi in eastern Nangarhar province, three Afghan officials told Reuters." And we wonder why they hate us.
  • I wrote about junk hate crime statistics for The Washington Examiner.
  • More woke scolding from the ACLU Twitter feed:

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  1. Sen. Josh Hawley (R–Mo.) met with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and essentially told him to break up the company.

    Dibs on Face. You can have Book.

    1. Hello.

      The Liberal party of Canada needs to rebrand itself. The Clown World Party. Or just plain the Progressive Party. Enough with the bull shit. They ain’t liberals.

      Bernier, for his part, shoulda gone with ‘The Not Trudeau Party’. The ‘People’s Party’ is akin to yellow and brown 70s wallpaper. It’s stale and doesn’t exude much panache.

      DO I HAVE TO THINK OF EVERYTHING?

      1. how about the Costume Party?

  2. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio has bid farewell to his presidential campaign. The longshot candidate withdrew from the Democratic primaries Friday morning, admitting on MSNBC that “it’s just not my time.”

    It is Trump’s time!

    MAGA

    1. You’re saying Trump should run for the Democratic nomination?

      1. He should!

        He’d actually sound less unhinged than most of the goofballs they have running now.

        I’m actually impressed that the Dems manage to turn out candidates who are even more clueless than Trump. It’s like they raided a special school for the developmental disabled and made them all run.

  3. The United Auto Workers’ strike against General Motors entered its fifth day Friday.

    UAW: Always good at reading the room.

    1. Meanwhile GM was just happy to have an excuse to stop building sedans that will never sell.

      1. My father worked for Bunker Hill Mining Co. in Kellogg, ID after getting out of the service in 1979. It was at the time the largest silver and lead mine in the world, but silver and lead prices were dropping. The parent company, Gulf Resources, wanted to decrease pay and some benefits as profits were decreasing. The contract had been negotiated during record and artificially high silver prices; a pair of brothers had been illegally stockpiling silver to raise prices and then dumped it on the market causing deep declines. Additionally, industrial use of silver, lead, zinc and nickel (two other major ores Bunker Hill produced) were declining. My Dad advised his fellow union members to take the deal, because it was better then the mine being shut down. The Union voted against it and found years later everyone was laid off, 3000+ workers without a job because the union had promised that Gulf Resources was bluffing and silver prices would recover. They did but not until 2008 or so. This started a chain reaction with mines shutting down throughout the Silver Valley. The economy of the area has never recovered to it’s pre-1983 level, yes tourism has brought in some money but the mines had produced far more wealth. Would the mines have stayed open if USW had accepted the contract? Who knows but we know that rejecting the contract hastened the end.

        1. And do you think USW learned their lessons? Hell no! In the late 1990s a USW strike in Spokane helped kill Kaiser Aluminum (ironically a number of those working at Kaiser Aluminum were from the Silver Valley).

          1. On any given day, 99% of Americans, including their preferred leaders, flunk Econ 101. Bad enough at the personal level, but tragic when thousands of people get screwed.

        2. The contract had been negotiated during record and artificially high silver prices; a pair of brothers had been illegally stockpiling silver to raise prices and then dumped it on the market causing deep declines.

          That was the Hunt brothers, including Lamar, the owner of the Kansas City Chiefs.

          1. Yep.

      2. GM cars have sucked for as long as I can remember. Parents had a Malibu and a Cutlass back in the 80s-neither made it past 30k. They have better design now, but quality still sucks.

      3. 20,000 vehicles a day times 5 days = 100,000 fewer vehicles to recall later.

        1. oh now it’s “September.20.2019”? And my phone number is “555.555.5555”? Everything is not an IP address people. And this ain’t Europe either.

    2. The uaw is just glad nobody is paying attention to the investigation into the leadership that has stolen millions in dues.

      1. if the same thing happens every year, it’s not news

  4. Rudy Giuliani sounded confused about whether he had demanded an investigation of Joe Biden’s Ukrainian ties.

    Was he afraid he was also in on the dealings and forgot?

    1. It isn’t confusion it’s dishonesty. If you were confused about it that then well I’m not surprised.

      1. What dishonesty? Like joe Biden telling Ukraine to fire a prosecutor looking into the company joe Biden son was being paid by?

    2. Its not a crime to ask other countries to investigate certain people in fact its done all the time and there is always a promise to return the favor otherwise why would they

      1. That’s what I dont get about this whistleblower controversy. The IC complainant filed a whistle blower claim over disagreeing with what Trump, or in this case Giulliani, said to a foreign leader. This is apparently the new way the IC is going to try to leak wiretaps since they cant unmask names legally now.

  5. Young People Take to Streets in Global Climate Protest

    Nothing like skipping school and getting away with it for like…no reason.

    1. The organizers blew it by not having the protest yesterday on Talk Like A Pirate Day.

      1. LOL, this!

      2. At the rate sea levels are rising we’ll all be pirates in a few decades.

        1. 3mm a year? Panic.

            1. his Revenge was awesome.

              1. Now there’s a blast from the past!

        2. Some guy built a pirate ship (and a submarine) in Terlingua, Texas. That’s 400 miles from the coast and 2800 ft above sea level. Clearly a forward thinker.

          1. Ahoy matey!

          2. they laughed at Noah too. then the Mediterranean Sea overflowed the Bosporus and flooded into the Black Sea.

      3. ARRRRRRR you with us!

        SHIVER SWEATING ME TIMBERS!

        BATTEN DOWN THE HATCHES…and turn the A/C up!

    2. Kids are kids – of course they want to skip class! We tried to skip school to protest the Rodney King beating (in Iowa!). One of our teachers said she would flunk each and everyone of us and force us to come to summer school if we did – needless to say no one skipped. Someone needs to stand up to the little shits.

      1. But who can unlearn all the facts that I’ve learned
        As I sat in their chairs and my synapses burned
        And the torture of chalk dust collects on my tongue
        Thoughts follow my vision and dance in the sun
        All my vasoconstrictors they come slowly undone
        Can’t this wait to I’m old?
        Can’t I live while I’m young?

        1. +1 read the book!

      2. There’s an amusing video BBC put put of kids talking about climate change that makes it even more awful knowing liberal adults are listening to these misinformed kids.

        1. The kids run the parents in a liberal household.

          1. Duh. Patriarchy, and matriarchy, are evil and must be obliterated.

        2. if the weather getting a little warmer is so bad, why have so many people moved to the Sun Belt in the past 50 years?

          1. ^^^This.

      3. in this case its the school forcing the kids to skip not the other way around. Try not going and see what kind of grade you get or the bullying that the teachers won’t notice

    3. And in the teachers’ break room, there was much rejoicing.

  6. “Canada’s Liberal Party is standing by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in the wake of his blackface scandal.”

    I’m as anti-racist as anyone, but I’m not sure “blackface” is the right word. “Brownface” might be better. Or even “skin-darkening makeup.”

    1. It’s a clear case of facism.

      1. Damn facists! They’re almost as bad as the athiests!

    2. It’s okay if a handsome progressive does it.

    3. When the story about his Aladdin costume broke, he also admitted that there was an earlier, undocumented incident when he has worn blackface. Like for Halloween in high school or something. Guess he was “getting out ahead of” that news coming out.

  7. Canada’s Liberal Party is standing by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in the wake of his blackface scandal.

    High ground = ceded.

  8. A U.S. drone missile intended for an ISIS hideout instead hit 30 pine nut farmers, killing them.

    At least it wasn’t a baby milk factory.

    1. Or a wedding party.

    2. What if the the factory was making tainted formula for the Chinese market?

    3. Euell Gibbons hardest hit.*

      *This one’s just for me.

      1. Ever eat a pine tree? Ever munch on a hickory bench?

    4. At least it wasn’t a baby milk factory.

      That one still cracks me up.

    5. or their dogs.

  9. California judge blocks law requiring Trump to submit tax returns to compete in state’s 2020 primary

    Two can play the game where Federal District Court judges can halt statewide/nationwide policy.

    1. Except this one didnt require finding animus or made up rights.

      1. +10

  10. The nonbinary pronoun ‘they’ has been added to the dictionary.

    The dictionary is supposed to make grammar less confusing, not more.

    1. How is that supposed to be used in a sentence?

      1. They are full of theyselves.

        1. Ahem. They *is* ….

          1. So you’re saying ebonics was the original woke language ..

            1. People don’t think it be like it is but it do.

            2. That would read “They be…”

      2. “The plaintiff filed a motion before the court in which they argued that the case should be removed to federal court.”

      3. You basically substitute it for where you would have used “he”.

        1. I basically decline thanks.

          1. That’s fine with me. I was just explaining, not advocating.

    2. I tried their link:

      Definition of they

      (Entry 1 of 2)
      1 : those ones : those people, animals, or things

      Man, ACLU should have started their tweet with “trigger warning” or something. I’m not easily offended, but even I’m uncomfortable that the ACLU would call them animals or things.

    3. Merriam-Webster has a definition for ain’t, too. It’s been in the dictionary for a long time. That does not make it grammatically correct usage. That’s not what dictionaries do.

      1. Yeah – back when I was teaching Freshman Comp, it was pretty much a Day One principle that quoting Merriam-Webster is not an iron-clad argument, and is in fact such a lazy, cliched thing to do that it winds up being immediately off-putting and makes you sound like a simpleton.

        Quoting a dictionary is one of the dumbest appeals to authority there is, but if/i> you’re going to do it, at least use the Oxford English Dictionary, which is the closest thing in the language to the “Official Dictionary.” Using Merriam-Webster you may as well be citing UrbanDictionary.com.

        1. Haha. Because words should have whatever meaning you want.

          Citing definitions that we all can reference is an excellent citation.

          Lefties crack me up because they love to change definitions too. Socialism does not mean anything close to the political and economic policies that resulted in 100+ million dead in the 20th Century.

  11. “More woke scolding from the ACLU Twitter feed”

    Really? It’s “woke scolding” to respect my gender identity and use my preferred pronouns?

    Oh, it figures. Robby Soave wrote this. Reason really needs to let Shackford handle LGBTQ+ issues.

    1. It’s woke scolding to berate others for not conforming to a new grammatical concept that has no customary basis and has yet to be accepted by the vast majority of society. If you’re offended by someone using your customary pronouns rather than your preferred pronouns I think you need to reassess what’s important in life. We already have names to differentiate people.

      1. I don’t need your woke scolding will now be my reply to anyone who says I’m mansplaining.

  12. A U.S. drone missile intended for an ISIS hideout instead hit 30 pine nut farmers, killing them.

    Can’t the U.S. just blame ISIS, as in accidental murders committed in a police operation?

    1. Or at least do the right thing around here and blame Obama?

      1. To be fair, Obama admitted that he ordered the murder of an American citizen and a second strike where the guy’s child was murdered.

        The bigger story here is that ISIS is still around.

        I guess the MSM and reason are too busy monitoring Twatter than investigate the real situation in Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan.

        1. To be fair, Obama admitted that he ordered the murder of an American citizen and a second strike where the guy’s child was murdered.

          Obama should have been impeached over that.

          1. While I agree that should have happened, I am more concerned that a general or other officer didn’t tell Obama “No. We are not going to murder an American with US military equipment.”

            The Deep State is a huge threat to Americans and almost half the USA wont admit it.

          2. Perhaps = Obama should have been impeached over that.

            Personally, I think a stronger case can be made for impeachment over the Taliban Five Trade for Bergdahl. Specifically, POTUS Obama broke the law by failing to inform Congress before the trade was made. That was in the law.

      2. Who her has blamed obama for drone strikes since 2016? Is this your TDS showing?

        1. You’re the one who brought Trump into this. Are you blaming him?

          1. What other reason would you have for accusing people of blaming obama for current day drone strikes?

            1. I don’t know, blaming Obama just seems like the thing to do around here. Of course, claiming anyone who might say anything that could even be interpreted as being critical of Trump has TDS is coming in vogue too.

              1. So back to my original question. Who is blaming obama for current day drone strikes? You claim it is happening. A bit of proof would be nice.

        2. But if weren’t for false equivalence, what would they have left?

          1. False equivalence, huh? The graph at the link in the article which shows both deaths and injuries from drone strikes are pretty much flat between 2014-2018 shows that maybe there’s a literal equivalence here.

      3. Obama should have been impeached for wearing sorta blackface.

        1. What about Michelle wearing womanface?

        2. He is half black and half white. In Brazil they call them mulatto. Nothing wrong with it. He’s as much white as he is black.

  13. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio has bid farewell to his presidential campaign.

    Got himself out of campaign debt already, eh?

    1. He probably walked off with a nice windfall, actually. Isn’t that what long-shot campaigns are for?

  14. President Donald Trump, the Twitter Troll-in-Chief, lamented that NYC is “devastated he’s coming home!”

    I don’t think it was meant as a joke?

    1. Yeah, that’s just a simple statement of fact.

    2. So true. The Mayor is a Communist, pure and simple. I commute to Manhattan a couple of times weekly and the subway is just disgusting. And late.

  15. ‘Your network is a horror’: Cuomo interview with Giuliani degenerates into shouting match

    Fredo is still not arrested for threatening to throw that guy down some stairs?

  16. De Blasio should propose a tax on aborted presidential campaigns.

    1. He ran on his convictions. He’s ALL IN on abortions.

  17. 1010 WINS reported that a recent poll had de blasio 0%. In NY.

    1. Yes but with margin of error that could be as low as -3%.

      1. Good one.

  18. More bad economic news.

    Charles Koch current net worth: $59.6 billion

    You know why our billionaire benefactor cannot crack the $60 billion barrier? Because of the tariffs and immigration restrictions causing the #DrumpfRecession.

    #VoteDemocratToHelpCharlesKoch
    #ElizabethWarrenHasAPlan
    #(ToEnrichCharlesKoch)

  19. Whistleblower complaint, reportedly on Trump ‘promise’ to foreign leader, touches off DC firestorm

    Barack Obama in open microphone gaffe with Dmitry Medvedev

    Dmitry Medvedev is, of course, the Russia stooge that booted from office because he wanted to drag Ukraine closer to Russia’s sphere of influence. Ukrainians are wary of Russians after almost 80 years of deadly repression and the Famine named “Holodomor”

    1. It’s going to be so much fun watching the MSM try to explain what exactly Trump is being accused of here (threatening to withhold funds from Ukraine unless they re-instate a prosecutor and re-open an investigation the prosecutor was involved in) without bringing up the background of how the prosecutor was fired in the first place and what it was he was investigating. (Joe Biden threatened to withhold funds from Ukraine if they didn’t fire the prosecutor who was looking into the crooked dealings of Joe Biden’s son.) Given the fact that Biden openly bragged about how he blackmailed Ukraine into dropping the investigation into his son’s activities, raising that background issue risks raising the issue of why the MSM never made an issue of Biden doing the exact same thing as Trump. Well, except for the minor detail that Biden was covering up a crime and Trump was exposing one.

  20. China rips Pelosi for meeting with Hong Kong activists

    Nancy Pelosi is the Democrat ringer for Election 2020?

    1. More like 1920

    2. She’s replacing Quasimodo.

  21. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio has bid farewell to his presidential campaign.

    It’s okay. The Democrats still have plenty of Communists to pick from.

    1. “Communists.” LOL!

      Some of the Democratic Party’s most vocal supporters are millionaire movie stars and entertainers. Democrats are embracing the immigration position advocated by billionaires like Charles Koch. The idea that modern Democrats are “communist” is absurd.

      1. They are worst than communists-they want to take everyone else’s money and tell them what to do, while they continue to enjoy their jet set lifestyles.

        1. So what you’re saying is they’re angling to be the leaders of the Communist party?

  22. Google to invest 3 billion euros in European data centers

    See, Google is not fazed by the EU fines on Google. Some companies might pause before spending that kind of money just to have your company property seized by the European Socialists. NOT Google. Through Google’s assistance with Socialists to spy on its citizens, Google can recoup all that money.

  23. These sex links suck.

      1. What a perv.

  24. U.S. news California’s cannabis black market has eclipsed its legal one

    Check out how these Lefties at NBCnews try to avoid the real reasons for the Black Market being more popular than the barely legal weed government market.

  25. POLITICO Playbook: How Trump has handcuffed Washington

    Forgive me for linking a Lefty rag but sometimes its important to get an idea how sad Lefties really are. Additionally that Lefties also know that Trump is rolling back federal expansion. Here’s an example.

    1. >>handcuffed Washington

      maga.

      1. +100

  26. Anti-vaccine protesters are likening themselves to civil rights activists

    Forgive me for linking a Lefty rag but sometimes its important to get an idea how sad Lefties really are. Here’s an example of massive tears for what ARE CIVIL RIGHTS. The right to decide what you put in your body and what you want inside your child’s body.

    1. The difference, of course, is that you can decide what goes in your body. You can’t decide who your parents are.

      1. Of course often times you can’t decide who your local government goon who forces you to vaccinate is either.

        1. Has anyone in the US been forced to vaccinate, under pain of fine or prison time? Or have they only been required to vaccinate in order to use certain public facilities (like schools)? (Obligatory: the argument over vaccinations would be moot if we privatized all the public facilities.)

          1. Yes. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/09/nyregion/measles-vaccination-williamsburg.html Nanny’s nanny de Blasio, taking “a more muscular approach”.

            Forced inoculation over a (admittedly highly-contagious) disease that has an almost 0% fatality rate.

            If that statist fuck wanted to force injections on people he’d be 100’s of times more effective doing so with the flu vaccine.

            1. Hopefully this gets shot down by the courts if they every try to actually enforce it.

            2. Anyone else notice the 40 bags of trash on the sidewalk?

              NY is a real shithole place. Shitty smells coming from vents in the streets, rats the size of Elizabeth Warren, and mass shootings almost weekly.

  27. “President Donald Trump, the Twitter Troll-in-Chief, lamented that NYC is “devastated he’s coming home!””

    And ten million retweets in NYC.

  28. “More woke scolding from the ACLU Twitter feed:”

    Isn’t there supposed to be a subject, following that colon?

    1. Twitter feeds are nothing but the colon.

  29. “I am going to redouble my efforts to improve tht he lives of everyday New Yorkers…”

    DeBlasio leaves presidential race, threatens the populace of NYC in vengeance for his loss.

    1. Reagan : The 9 most terrifying words in the English language are “I’m from the government and I’m here to help”.

      DeBlasio: Hold my beer, I can make those words twice as terrifying.

  30. FREE MINDS
    should discuss how NY children are being forced to partake in political protest they may not believe in but must comply for fear of scholastic retribution

    1. forced to partake in political protest they may not believe in but must comply for fear of scholastic retribution

      Under the heading “Do You Want a Backlash? Because This Is How You Get a Backlash.”

  31. Venezuela is pretty much at the New Economic Policy stage of communist revolution:

    “President Nicolás Maduro ’s authoritarian government, long a practitioner of tight state control of the economy, has quietly and cautiously begun implementing free-market policies to tame hyperinflation and correct an economic contraction worse than America’s Great Depression. So far, that approach is providing a sliver of light to the moribund economy.

    In recent months, the regime has scaled back its once frenzied printing of money, nearly ended frequent salary hikes, and largely stopped enforcing the price controls that had led to dire food shortages and a thriving black market. Inflation has fallen from a peak 12-month rate of 2.6 million percent in January to 135,000% in August, the National Assembly says.”

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/venezuela-quietly-loosens-grip-on-market-tempering-economic-crisis-11568718002?

    What’s going on in Venezuela wasn’t only foreseeable–it was also foreseen. Whenever anyone in history has implemented Venezuela’s polices, the consequences may have varied in intensity, but they’ve always been more or less the same–and for all the same reasons. Printing money like wallpaper, price controls, nationalization of industry, etc., the results of these policies are no more mysterious than the results of ignoring the laws of gravity. They weren’t a mystery when Chavez or Maduro first assumed power either.

    Lenin was forced to implement the New Economic Policy for the same reasons, but if Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren implement these polices in the name of The Green New Deal or Medicare for All, it could turn out differently this time–because Sanders and Warren care about people. Is that what we’re supposed to think?!

    1. Haven’t you heard? Climate change is literally going to destroy the Earth in 10 years or so. Surely we’re better off with boots stomping on human faces forever.

    2. “…Is that what we’re supposed to think?!”

      Tony posts here often enough that it takes ‘magical thinking’ to assume the market alone efficiently distributes goods, and he claims to be educated.
      I’m supposing that those who are similarly inclined are simply not really bright enough to connect the dots between the constant and consistent disasters wrought by central planning.

      1. If we can’t reach those people with facts and logic, we probably should try ridicule and embarrassment. They’re walking around with their fly open and their junk hanging out, and if they’re doing it on purpose, we might be doing them a favor by making them feel ashamed of themselves.

        1. Are you sure they are capable of feeling shame on this subject? They have so many like-minded supporters.

  32. WASHINGTON — The Education Department has ordered Duke University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to remake the Middle East studies program run jointly by the two schools after concluding that it was offering students a biased curriculum that, among other complaints, did not present enough “positive” imagery of Judaism and Christianity in the region.

    —-New York Times, September 19, 2019

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/19/us/politics/anti-israel-bias-higher-education.html

    Reading that story at the New York Times, you might imagine that this is an unprecedented attack on freedom of speech by the Trump administration. Unfortunately, the New York Times piece doesn’t include any direct reference to what is actually happening.

    Here’s another quote from the piece:

    “Betsy DeVos, the education secretary, has become increasingly aggressive in going after perceived anti-Israel bias in higher education.”

    From other sources, what is actually happening is that Betsy DeVos has rejected an application for $235,000 in taxpayer money to fund the program. She isn’t telling the Duke and UNC that they can’t say what they want. She’s telling them that they can’t use taxpayer money to fund a political advocacy program on behalf of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement against Israel using taxpayer money. Go find private donors!

    Incidentally, this is the same reason why federal tax dollars can’t be used to fund Citadel or VMI if they actively discriminate against women. Notice, however, that the Trump administration isn’t going after their eligibility for Pell grants and federally backed student loans. From what I can tell, they just turned down an application for funding for this one program.

    1. “In a letter it issued to the two schools in August after a monthslong investigation, the department concluded that the curriculum doesn’t align with guidelines for a $235,000 federal grant the program receives for international studies and foreign language programs.”

      https://www.wsj.com/articles/education-department-orders-duke-unc-to-revamp-mideast-program-11568935966?

      They’re not telling Duke-UNC what they can and can’t say. They’re telling them what the federal government will and won’t fund with the taxpayer’s money.

      1. And there’s a question left begging here. If I could just put my finger on it….

  33. JUST SAY NO to singular “they.”

    Thus far and no fucking farther, say I.

    1. Non-binary is a delusion.

    2. Using singular “they” is not a new practice. I have to say I’ve been using it for years in business memos and such, where the intended readers might take offense at sexist language. I figured it would be way less awkward than using some made-up word like “ze”.

      1. To clarify, I started using it in business writing back when all anyone cared about was whether your writing was sexist. This was in the days before anyone started talking about gender fluidity or non-binary gender.

        1. Correct. It’s an acceptable, if inaccurate, substitute for “he or she”, which gets heavy. Some writers rotate between he and she. Some wokesters have switched to only she, but that begs the question – is it inclusive of trans”women”?

          Only her hairdresser knows for sure.

          1. Correct. It’s an acceptable, if inaccurate, substitute for “he or she”, which gets heavy.

            ^ This.

            Fun fact: “you” also used to be the plural. Similar to German, the plural also doubled as a respectful form of singular address. English “thou” was the intimate, informal second-person singular, cognate with Germanic du and Latinate tu.

            “Thou” is prominent in the King James Bible because the intimate was chosen as the correct usage between God and Man. This led to “thou” sounding more formal and sacrosanct, such that it was eventually entirely replace by “you,” transformed into a singular.

            Worth noting, though, that this happened through custom, not law.

            1. I knew use of “they” as a singular pronoun went way back, but you actually know the details.

  34. The funniest part about De Blasio’s failed campaign is that he was literally polling at 0% in New York City. Has there ever been a more pathetic vanity campaign?

    1. Clinton, 2016?

      1. That was a pretty pathetic loss, but at the end of the day she at least made it to the general and got 65 million votes. She at least had reasonable grounds to think she could win even if the fact that she didn’t against Trump is sad.

        Virtually nobody in the city De Blasio is mayor of wants the guy to be president and yet he thought it was a good idea to make a run. The thought process behind that is just baffling to me, but then again I’m not the sort of person who’d ever have any interest in being president or any sort of politician.

        1. But it was Clinton’s for the taking. It was her turn. Then she lost to a reality TV star. She published a book titled “What Happened” that took no responsibility for the loss.

          De Blasio at least performed as expected.

          1. The fact that De Blasio performed as expected is what makes it such an absurd vanity campaign. I’m not arguing his run was the most disappointing campaign ever relative to expectations or anything like that (Jeb! may have Hillary beat on that just in the 2016 cycle, though there may be worse examples from prior years that I can’t think of off the top of my head).

  35. I didn’t know DeBlasio was still running.

    1. He still Isis running for NYC mayor third term, and despite what this article says about NYCers despising him, they will gladly re-elect him.

    2. I didn’t know he had started running.

  36. De-blah-see-owe? I love how the East Coasters assume the rest of the country even knows who these guys are.

  37. >>And we wonder why they hate us.

    nope. don’t care.

  38. I would like to take this opportunity to make a similarly-relevant announcement:

    I am withdrawing from the 2020 Democratic Presidential Primary

    1. You had more of a chance to win than any Democrat that ran/is running.

  39. Second Pacific island nation in a week cuts ties with Taiwan

    *One of the first comments

    After receiving huge bribe from slave state Communist China, Pacific island nation cuts ties with free and independent Taiwan
    (fixed that for ya)

  40. My favorite stat on di Blasio (from 538): candidates needed 135,000 donors by the end of July to qualify for the third debate. Di Blasio had 6700.

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