Reason Roundup

The Hunter Biden Laptop Story Makes Another Case Against 'Misinformation' Bans

Plus: Fiona Apple fights for transparent courts, Missouri bill takes aim at out-of-state abortions, and more...

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Another example of how combating "misinformation" may obscure the truth. It's become popular in certain political and media circles to say social media must clamp down harder on false information. Some lawmakers have even threatened tech companies with severe consequences for failing to stop the spread of fake news. But the idea that these companies could ever do this adequately is laughable—something driven home by new reporting on Hunter Biden's laptop.

Back in October 2020, the New York Post first reported on the laptop—allegedly left by President Joe Biden's son at a computer repair shop and containing emails about Hunter's work for Ukrainian energy company Burisma. The emails suggested Burisma was paying Hunter in order to get access to his dad.

The story was quickly panned by prestige media and denounced by Democrats, who characterized it as an attempt to make then-candidate Joe Biden look bad and possibly another attempt by Russians to influence a U.S. presidential election. Even mentioning it to criticize it was frowned upon by some on the left.

This narrative was so pervasive and persuasive that Facebook temporarily limited distribution of the Post story and Twitter briefly blocked users from sharing it entirely.

Now, The New York Times—which was critical of the Post story when it came out—has published a piece backing up many of the Post's initial assertions. The story details the U.S. Department of Justice's investigation into Hunter Biden for possible violations of laws surrounding taxes, foreign lobbying, and money laundering.

Federal prosecutors "had examined emails…from a cache of files that appears to have come from a laptop abandoned by Mr. Biden in a Delaware repair shop," the Times reports, before going on to describe the contents of some of these emails. These emails "were authenticated by people familiar with them and with the investigation," it says.

So: A story that initially seemed dubious turned out to have been true all along.

What can we take from this?

I don't think the moral is that everyone was wrong to question the Post's reporting. ("There were reasons to be skeptical of the Post's story," as Reason's Jacob Sullum noted yesterday.) But the impetus to discourage or ban all discussion or amplification of it was wrong.

In this case, it led to social media companies actually obscuring the truth in the name of combating misinformation. And it discouraged other media outlets from looking into the Post's allegations in a serious manner. In short, it helped keep people in the dark about Biden's son's business dealings.

The whole fiasco has a similar structure to the lab leak theory news cycle. The idea that COVID-19 originated not in a Wuhan wet market but a virus research laboratory nearby was initially decried by respectable sources as right-wing propaganda. Again, social media companies were encouraged to—or in some cases did—limit stories suggesting a lab leak had launched the pandemic. Then, months down the road, the lab leak hypothesis was vindicated—not necessarily as true (we'll probably never know) but as something at least plausible.

In both cases, stories were initially met with skepticism (which is fine), from which folks quickly leaped to calling them misinformation and suggesting they should be off limits to read or share (not fine). In both cases, the stories turned out to have much more credibility than originally thought.

Companies like Twitter and Facebook are of course private actors that can choose what sorts of information to allow or block. But in these cases, social media companies weren't just acting in a vacuum but under incessant (and ongoing) threats of punishment by the government if they didn't stop the spread of misinformation.

Misinformation bans don't work for many reasons, but a main one is that sometimes the truth is hard to determine. The real moral of the story here seems to be that letting politicians, pundits, media outlets, or tech executives decide the contours of the truth is likely to backfire.


UKRAINE UPDATES

Putin's demands. In a phone call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Russian President Vladimir Putin laid out his demands for striking a peace deal with Ukraine. "Chief among them is an acceptance by Ukraine that it should be neutral and should not apply to join Nato," the BBC reports. More:

There are other demands in this category which mostly seem to be face-saving elements for the Russian side.

Ukraine would have to undergo a disarmament process to ensure it wasn't a threat to Russia. There would have to be protection for the Russian language in Ukraine. And there is something called de-Nazification.

This is deeply offensive to Mr Zelensky, who is himself Jewish and some of whose relatives died in the Holocaust, but the Turkish side believes it will be easy enough for Mr Zelensky to accept. Perhaps it will be enough for Ukraine to condemn all forms of neo-Nazism and promise to clamp down on them.

The second category is where the difficulty will lie, and in his phone call, Mr Putin said that it would need face-to-face negotiations between him and President Zelensky before agreement could be reached on these points. Mr Zelensky has already said he's prepared to meet the Russian president and negotiate with him one-to-one.

The second category involved demands related to the Donbas region of eastern Ukraine.


FREE MINDS

Musician Fiona Apple is speaking out in favor of Maryland measures to open up access to court proceedings. The bills (S.B. 469 and H.B. 647) would guarantee that all criminal and civil proceedings will be open to virtual audio and video public access

"This is crunch time," tweeted civil rights attorney Scott Hechinger. "It isn't just about Maryland but about the future of open courts throughout the country. MD has the opportunity to set the tone for transparency—an opportunity we can not afford to let pass by."


FREE MARKETS

Can Missouri prevent people from leaving the state to visit abortion clinics? Not exactly. But it can make it risky for anyone to help a pregnant woman do so. State Rep. Mary Elizabeth Coleman (R–St. Louis) has introduced a bill that would make it harder to cross state lines to terminate a pregnancy by allowing private citizens to sue anyone who "aids or abets" someone leaving the state for an abortion.

The Missouri law could target companies like Citigroup, which will now help fund employees traveling out of states with restrictive abortion laws. "In response to changes in reproductive health care laws in certain states in the U.S., beginning in 2022 we provide travel benefits to facilitate access to adequate resources," the company said this week.

"Abortion rights advocates say the measure is unconstitutional because it would effectively allow states to enact laws beyond their jurisdictions, but the Republican-led Missouri legislature has been supportive of creative approaches to antiabortion legislation in the past," notes Caroline Kitchener at The Washington Post. "The measure could signal a new strategy by the antiabortion movement to extend its influence beyond the conservative states poised to tighten restrictions if the Supreme Court moves this summer to overturn its landmark precedent protecting abortion rights."

Allowing private lawsuits for abortion-related activity has become the latest trend in anti-abortion legislation, following the passage of Texas S.B. 8 and the Supreme Court's ruling that the nature of the law (not enforced by state officials but through private lawsuits) made its preemptive blocking impossible. S.B. 8 banned abortion after fetal cardiac activity could be detected (around six weeks into a pregnancy). Since the law took effect last September, women have been getting around it by traveling out of state or getting abortion pills in the mail.

Earlier this month, Idaho passed a similar law—though it was slightly more limited in scope in that it only allows family members of someone getting an abortion to sue abortion doctors.

Tennessee is now considering a similar but more extreme version of S.B. 8. "The Tennessee version introduced Tuesday would ban all abortions rather than allowing a patient to have a six-week window. But similar to the Texas model, it still would make legal challenges difficult because the government would not be the enforcer," reports the Associated Press.


QUICK HITS

• "Despite public assertions that it had gone dormant, a multi-agency task force consisting of federal, state, and local police that was created to monitor protests in Minnesota during the murder trial of former police officer Derek Chauvin continued to operate in secret after the trial's conclusion," the MIT Technology Review reports.

• The U.S. "can't fund COVID treatments for the uninsured because we spent trillions of COVID aid on wasteful garbage," writes Reason's Eric Boehm.

• Moderna is seeking authorization for a second COVID-19 booster for all adults.

• Lawyer and author Jeff Kosseff explains "how corporate criticism threatened online anonymous speech."

• "The Federal Trade Commission will not challenge Amazon's acquisition of MGM Studios after the agency's commissioners split on bringing a suit," according to Politico.

Reason's Natalie Dowzicky on the controversy surrounding Lia Thomas, a transgender woman who won the NCAA Division I women's swimming championship.

• Santa Barbara lawmakers want to declare Chick-fil-A a public nuisance.

• Some good news for the criminal justice reform movement in Tennessee:

NEXT: Who Will Be the First Person To Go to Prison for Selling Flavored Tobacco or E-Cigarettes?

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  1. Another example of how combating "misinformation" may obscure the truth.

    The ends of getting rid of Trump justify the means of losing all credibility.

    1. Just for reporting this now makes ENB a Trumpster.

      1. And also Putin's puppet.

        1. And an Insurrectionist.

        2. Mickey Rat agrees

      2. She was super-careful to couch her comments in continued skepticism and "well, that's ok, and fine" and "skepticism was warranted" and "Jacob Sullum noted" and... yeah.

        I guess it's not easy just coming out and saying, "Holy fucking shit were we wrong".

        1. Because there was so much more they were wrong about related to the election, and they’re still pretending they were honest brokers of “Free Minds”.

        2. There has been no reason for skepticism for over a year.
          Media colluded to protect a favored candidate. Crickets.

          1. Which makes one wonder if the collusion isn't still ongoing. Surely there is a strategy in place for "anyone but Joe/Kamala in place" given their failures and public image, even among Democrat loyalists. But blatantly going against the sitting president of your own party, particularly this early is severely frowned on and makes him a lame duck. Better to start setting the stage at this point so that

            1] it doesn't come back to haunt them - pull off the bandaid. If Republicans take either house, you know there will be investigations and this time, they won't have as much media credibility
            2] gives Democrats running this year some justifiable reason to distance themselves from Biden

            Why else would the Times bother to come out with it at this point? Who gave them permission to do so?

          2. I have to agree. The Biden Laptop story was really nothing new. It was confirmation of what was widely known for years yet only came to forefront of the public eye during the Trump Impeachment. There was no rational explanation for Hunter's salaries and positions aside from bribery. It was like a magician's trick where you know that the assistant has to be under a trap door because there's no other place to go. Removing the curtain does reveal the trick but if you think about it, there's no other way that it could be done.

        3. I would mind less if these fucks were wrong if they just had an ounce of integrity to admit that they didn’t even make an effort to “be wrong. “ Instead, they either played ostrich or swallowed the TDS Koolaid.

        4. Have noticed, the left-leaning and far right very rarely have the strength or the courage to simply say, 'I was wrong.'

          1. According to the left the “far right “ are everyone from joe Rogan to hitler.

            1. "Anyone to the right of Bernie needs to be gassed!"

        5. Gaia forfend she go even further and note any or all of the people who - quite accurately - told her just how wrong she was at the time!

        6. "There were reasons to be skeptical of the Post's story," as Reason's Jacob Sullum noted yesterday.

          "Admittedly, those reasons were We were told to be skeptical or we'd lose our cocktail party invites and We're actually a bunch of statist cunts when it comes right down to it but they were reasons."

    2. I seem to remember the Reason staff being fine with the Post story being defined as misinformation and actively suppressed by Twitter, as "private company" sort of thing.

      1. If so that would be more or less ideologically consistent, although one can argue can and should as two different things. In addition, as a journalistic outlet, the core story itself - the laptop and its contents - would have been fertile ground for investigation.

        1. That’s my complaint. The signal went out to ignore this story, and other than some to be sures, they did what they were told.

          And then we’re supposed to pretend that they weren’t supportive of Biden winning over Trump.

          1. But it wasn't just " ignore this story" it was "actively suppress" this story in the case of social media.

            They are not to be trusted

        2. But now it's time to get those hands clean so that they can later claim that they reported it once it once the questions were cleared up.

          Also, all of these "50 former intelligence officials" who signed onto the suppression of the story as Russian disinformation... I don't see them on the news taking flack for their own disinformation. It will be forgotten about until they need these 50 asswipes to take up the Democrat narrative once again. Brennan and Clapper will then be out stumping again and flashing their credentials, and declaring some new Putin alignments.

          1. 50 former intelligence officials... And we blame bush for listening to these nooks with Iraq?
            Pretty sure these guys are more neutral than right wing would like to believe on top of it all.
            They weren't giving Obama very good advice either.
            It's easy to assume that people we hate are just bald face liars, but I think it's more likely that these guys told O that isis was JV, than he overruled them because he's a secret Muslim (or any other reason). The man is an intelligent, hard core progressive atheist. You know they have to detest Muslims deep down. Especially these violent fundy groups.
            Clinton wasn't doing his own analysis on Somalia, bush wasn't on Iraq, Obama wasn't on syria, etc. Presidents don't have time for that shit. They have to trust their experts.
            I don't believe in illuminati shit, but I do think there is some coordination amongst these spooks to shape the world and gain wealth and power.
            It's beyond deep state. China and the cia/deep state worked together to make the rona. And they're working in how many countries doing God know what with "humanized" body parts. And chimeric what have yous.
            The common man has lost.
            The libertarian man has lost even harder. The world is a sick game and in the end 99.999% of us are on the receiving side of a lube free reaming.

      2. Refreshing everyone’s memory with what Reason actually said at the time the story broke:

        https://reason.com/2020/10/14/hunter-biden-new-york-post-story-media-facebook-burisma-ukraine/

        “It's a story that merits the attention of other journalists, political operatives, national security experts, and also the public at large—not least of all because there are serious questions about its accuracy, reliability, and sourcing. And yet many in the media are choosing not just to ignore the story, but to actively encourage others to suppress any discussion of it.”

        1. because there are serious questions about its accuracy, reliability, and sourcing.

          And you dont understand that this was the lie as your comment in the thread also says. Because Giuliani it was questionable. That's an ad hominem attack.

          The information on the laptop was videos, pictures, emails... all verifiable. Yet reason also helped push the it was misinformation narrative when it broke.

          You do realize the quote you chose actually proves how bad Reason was here right?

          1. Yeah...when the media is telling you to ignore a story, the journalistic thing to do is start fucking digging.

            1. Reason doesn’t do much do much original investigative journalism, on any topic. They aren’t set up for it or budgeted for it.

              1. You don't have to investigate to call out the rest of the press for rolling over on it.

            2. That's investigative journalism, not 'repeat shit I read on social media' journalism, not 'use the same headline, lede, if not article as everybody else' journalism, not 'religiously adhere to the dictated talking points and narrative like a good running dog' journalism.

          2. Jesse, the laptop coming to public was suspicious as all get-out. The idea that he would leave such a computer in a repair shop with clearly incriminating evidence that just happened to come to light conveniently before the election staggers belief.

            I think Minority Report said it best (paraphrasing from memory).
            "This is an orgy of evidence. I've never seen anything like it in my 20 years working homicide." "So, that's a great case?" "No, I'm almost certain that this has been planted deliberately for us."

            1. This doesn't mean it's fake. There has been enough independent verification that it's almost certainly Biden's computer and that the data on it is genuine.

              However, I wouldn't be shocked at all if the laptop was really from the Secret Service's storage room. The guards are the ones most likely to end up with lost or abandoned electronics, and I can definitely see many of them being highly upset with what they were being forced to witness and protect. There's no evidence for this theory, but it's the simplest explanation.

              Now, this isn't proof, and one-in-a-million chances do happen. However, any journalist worth their salt can and should have answered these questions before blindly accepting or dismissing this data.

        2. People like you (and NYT, WaPo, Branch Covidians, Climate Alarmists, etc) helped swing the election, Mike. You lied and obfuscated. Was it from malignant intent? No one will ever know that answer. Only you know. But the media, big tech were wrong, and their actions in actively suppressing what we now know to be true did impact the 2020 election and the impact was only one way.

          Considering the poor job POTUS Biden is doing running the country, why should people like you not be held to account for your choices and actions? Or is your answer, "Aw shucks, better luck next time, chumps".

      3. You actually commented on Soave’s blog post at the time, so you most definitely saw it:

        https://reason.com/2020/10/14/hunter-biden-new-york-post-story-media-facebook-burisma-ukraine/?comments=true&amp#comment-8520461

        1. I posted all your fun quotes yesterday in the thread white Mike. Want me to post them again?

          1. I think you should, JesseAZ.

            1. The White Knight
              October.22.2020 at 11:12 am
              Flag Comment Mute User
              Has it been overturned? You guys are very adamant about questioning sources when a story breaks about Trump having been involved in some scandal, but in this case you readily believe the authenticity of a story whose sources are Guiliani, Bannon, a pro-Trump shop owner in a state Hunter Biden didn't even live in at the time, a reporter who is an ex-Hannity staffer who didn't actually write the story, and Trump partisan, Ratcliffe.

              The most damning statement is from Tony Bobulinski, claiming that the email about Joe Biden receiving a ten-percent cut from a deal with a Chinese company. ENB seems to have missed that news. One detail to note about those emails is that they were from 2017, when Biden was no longer in office.

              But you guys are overlooking the holes and inconsistencies in the story, and readily believing sources who are known to have a troubled relationship with truth.

            2. The White Knight
              October.22.2020 at 11:48 am
              Flag Comment Mute User
              Maybe. But, as several articles about the possibility that this is a Russian disinformation effort have explained, it is typical for a disinformation effort to take a bunch of authentic emails gotten through hacking, and mix in some fake emails.

              Anyway, I appreciate keeping a sense of balance and looking at evidence for and against the story. I'm voting for Jo Jorgensen, so I have no personal stake in defending Joe Biden. He may be corrupt as hell.

            3. The White Knight
              October.22.2020 at 11:53 am
              Flag Comment Mute User
              Because, as several articles about disinformation explained, the photos could have been gotten by Russians hacking Hunter Biden's computers, then a fake laptop could have been prepared.

              That would mean the the photos are authentic, of course. But it also means the part of the story about the laptop could be totally fake.

            4. The White Knight
              October.22.2020 at 11:55 am
              Flag Comment Mute User
              It goes beyond ad hominems. Giuliani has been cavorting with lots of shady characters, and even a known Russian agent.

              1. Damn, that’s brutal

              2. Thank you, because you have shown Reason Commentariat for all time what a hypocritical lying wuss Mike Liarson actually is. What an ass.

              3. I try to un-see Rudy in one of those old-timey, 1920s full-body bathing suits, with a big grin, dancing on the beach with mobsters. 'Cavorting' is definitely straight out of OSF/DNC talking points.

            5. I think Lauren should go play surprise games of chicken with freight trains for as long as it takes for her to win.

        2. You know, this is all well and good, but it would have been nice if Reason actually took some time to talk about the potential implications of the information. Reason's coverage was only the story ABOUT the story, and they never cared to actually write anything about the idea that Hunter actually taking bribes in order to set up meetings with Biden. The very thing Trump was impeached for wanting Ukraine to investigate was proven on that laptop.

          It's nice that Robby pointed out how the media was trying to suppress might be a legitimate story, but that meant the media successfully deflected from what should have been a real bombshell. Suddenly instead of the actual laptop, people are talking about social media and censorship. Where's the attempt to actually look at the potentially interesting story at the heart of this?

          I don't give a shit about the salacious aspects of Hunter's alleged cocaine habit or home-made porn or even people bribing by overpaying for his artwork. But there was direct evidence that the candidate for President had used his status to allow his son to accept bribes on his behalf. That's along with the massive conflict of interest that came from Biden having gotten fired an investigator who was looking into the Burisma corruption. It's an actual bombshell of a story that Reason didn't talk about because the story wasn't the fact, it was people TALKING about the fact.

          1. Fair enough if you are disappointed Reason didn’t delve into it further than they did.

            I’m just trying to counter the common habit around here of “remembering” Reason’s coverage differently than it actually was.

            1. No your not liar.

            2. Did you even bother to read his fucking post?

            3. And Mike buddy, I was the first to post reasons article on yesterday's thread dumbass. Nobody is misremembering. They understand the slant and narrative Robbie took unlike you.

          2. Journolisming 101: If the story might reflect badly on Democrats make the story about something else.

    3. Exactly what truth would being extremely sceptical of right-wing claims about a Democratic candidate inhibit.

      This story was put forward in exactly the same way that all of the bogus stories about Hillary Clinton were put forward. It was first reported in a book called Secret Empires that was published by Steve Bannon's Government Accountability Institute and writen by Clinton Cash author Peter Schweizer.

      What the right needs to understand is that if you lie incessently there is going to be a time where your claims are not going to be automatically believed.

      The reality of this claim is that the Biden family has come nowhere near what the Trump family has done in this area.

      Even if what the right-wing media is saying is true the reality is that in the scheme of things if you hold both sides accountable to a similar standard this comes nowhere near the Trump standard.

      The Bidens put a foot in the gutter. The Trumps gleefully leapt into the sewer.

      Context matters.

      1. And what has the Trump family done that compares to this? Cite or you are just gaslighting for Biden.

      2. Trump was a senator for 50 years, and VP, before he was president?

        Are you to stupid to understand how this works, or are you another parody?

        1. I'm guessing too stupid. Possibly a bad case of TDS.

      3. Eat shit. Die.
        Xoxo

        1. Wrong reply... Sorry mac

      4. There were no bogus stories about HiLIARy.
        The leftist media knew damn well that the laptop story was legit and completely fabricated the "Russian disinformation" thing as an excuse to not follow up on it or to censor it.
        The leftist media is completely devoid of an semblance of impartiality and will intentionally misinform the public to get what they want.
        That's what they did here.

  2. The story was quickly panned by prestige media and denounced by Democrats...

    BUT I REPEAT MYSELF

  3. Tony said the only scandal was that hunter owned a laptop.

    1. Well, the guys seems to have several and does lose track of them. I think it was one of those high dollar Apple units and he just loses track of them. He is quoted as not being sure himself if it is his. If I lost a work laptop it could turn into quite the scandal, but not because of anything on it but for the dollar value alone.

      But, yes Tony is just stupid and a liar.

    2. Yeah. That was an odd comment from him yesterday.

      1. Unlike White Mike, cytotoxic (dba chemjeff) and sarcasmic, Tony occasionally tries to go off-script and winds up devolving into a puddle of non-sequiturs.

  4. Now, The New York Times—which was critical of the Post story when it came out—has published a piece backing up many of the Post's initial assertions.

    They couldn't even have the common decency to wait until after the midterms?

    1. They are getting ahead of it early so everyone will forget.

      1. I suspect they’re hoping some fringe Republicans will make their campaign all about impeachment, which might turn off a lot of independents.

  5. In both cases, the stories turned out to have much more credibility than originally thought.

    But I'm sure the next story enthusiastically suppressed will be actual misinformation.

    1. My favorite is how ENB and her employer are in no way culpable of going along with it.

      1. Honestly I can't recall where Reason landed on it, if the publication had an editorial stance at all.

        1. Reason doesn’t tend to take editorial stances on general. Various writers are allowed to express various, divergent opinions and biases.

          Well, except maybe Dalmia, who may have strayed too far off the libertarian range.

          1. What the fuck are you talking about? They take editorial stances all the fucking time.

            1. And they aren't divergent...

            2. Half the time their editorial stance is that their take is absolutely not libertarian or well reasoned at all.

              I give you ENB

          2. Reason always takes editorial stances

          3. Reason doesn’t tend to take editorial stances on general.

            Check out the new guy...

            "doesn't tend to take editorial stances".

            It's a libertarian magazine that pushes "Free Markets and Free minds". They take editorial stances all the time.

            1. Other than free markets and free minds of course

              1. How often do they take those stances these days? They're more often DNC shills regardless of the minds or market contradiction.

            2. In fact, they almost exclusively do opiniom journalism. We get straight news next to never and investigative reporting once a year if we're lucky.

          4. Reason takes unified editorial stances on a number of issues, especially those in the interest of their primary benefactor (much of OBL's material comes from this), and on any given day runs articles with Vox-style headlines that tell the reader exactly what to think about the issues under discussion. Sometimes Reason writers disagree, but mostly they present a united front. You know this, though, and don't care. Your prevailing stance, regardless of the issue at hand, is that criticism of the Reason staff/MSM/Democratic party/progressive tribe at large is automatically wrong and misinformed.

            1. “You know this, though, and don't care.”

              I don’t “know” this, and don’t agree that it is true. For example, in the run-up to the 2020 presidential election, Nick Gillespie, as prominent a Reason staffer as you can get, repeatedly said he would prefer a Trump presidency to a Biden presidency.

              1. If you don't know this and really can't see it, then wow.

                1. Denial is a hell of a drug, to paraphrase. But it's a shill. Would be more interesting if it were a shill-bot.

              2. Nick Gillespie, as prominent a Reason staffer as you can get, repeatedly said he would prefer a Trump presidency to a Biden presidency.

                He did not say this repeatedly. He said it once. One time. During the podcast. In the "how our staff will vote" piece, he as usual indicated that he did not plan to vote and did not care about the outcome. The rest of the editorial staff was nearly evenly split between JoJo and Biden.

                Just for the fuck of it, you could try not lying just once. Just to see how it feels.

                1. I’m not lying. He said it more than once.

                2. Also, not sure why it would be important how many times he said it. The important thing is that he said it.

            2. “Your prevailing stance, regardless of the issue at hand, is that criticism of the Reason staff/MSM/Democratic party/progressive tribe at large is automatically wrong and misinformed.”

              This is not true. I do tend to stick up for Reason, a publication I admire, when they are falsely accused of not covering or not saying this or that.

              I don’t defend the MSM, and the only defense I’ve offered of Democrats and progressives is to acknowledge they often have good intentions. In my book, acknowledging someone has good intentions isn’t say much, as the old adage about good intentions is still true.

              1. How dare you contradict the narrative about yourself! You're wrong!

                1. Self delusion is one of your defining traits as well.

                2. See the problem with you two lying pieces of shit is that "the narrative about you" is entirely built around the things that you've actually written down, in black and white, and shared with the entire fucking world via the internet. So then when you contradict the "narrative about you" by lying and denying that you said things you actually said, it just makes you look spectacularly mendacious. Because you are.

                  1. Where is the overwhelming evidence?

                    *snore*

              2. I think you really do believe what you're saying, so there's really nothing more to discuss. My advice? Ignore me!

                1. I was ignoring you. You personally commented on me. Not current issues, not political debates, you commented on me.

                  1. I commented on whether Reason takes editorial positions on issues *and* you. You seem upset that I commented on you, but is commenting on others not something you do multiple times in this thread? Also, this isn't how ignoring someone works. But whatever.

                    1. I’m not upset. Have I used any swear words, or insults,?

                    2. “ is commenting on others not something you do multiple times in this thread”

                      I think I commented on JesseAz today. I actually paid him the compliment that he makes a good point every once in a while.

                    3. Never complain. Never explain.

              3. All you do is lie Mike. Everyone around you is telling you how you are and you are in denial.

          5. This is a ridiculous lie even for you, Mike Liarson.

          6. All reason does is take editorial stances.

        2. I posted the articles yesterday Fist. Reason called it suspicious and questionable.

          1. ENB was probably one of the worst when she wrote about it, claiming the real story about how Trump was weaponizing the FBI or something.

    2. Reason may be shocked, but many here knew it was credible at the outset.

  6. Why don’t we facilitate the peace talks instead of shipping weapons?

    1. "We do not negotiate with terrorists"?

      1. Somebody better tell basement bunker Biden - he is negotiating with some now, and part of the deal is to be sure Russia get 10 billion bucks. Still not serious "follow the money" stories about the Biden/Clinton/Obama axis?

    2. Its one of those catch-22 situations. If Russian forces completely overrun Ukraine there will be no peace talks because Ukraine will be forced to surrender unconditionally, but of course by sending weapons we cede any position as a completely neutral 3rd party, and thus make facilitating peace talks more difficult

      1. There would be peace tomorrow if the US and Europe committed to cutting off "aid".

        1. Conversely, there would be peace tomorrow if Putin simply said "my bad" and backed out of the country he invaded.

          1. Which he can’t do.

            1. I'd love to hear your reason why he "can't" as opposed to "won't".

              1. Why do you think Putin made the call to invade?
                Because he's crazy and wants to genocide the Ukrainian people on his way to conquering the former eastern block, like corporate media and our government would have us believe?
                If not, you have to ask yourself what his rationale was.
                Putin is among the wealthiest men in the world, and has never faced much threat internally. He's established a legacy by restoring Russian national pride and bringing the economy/standard of living up from the hell it was in the 90s.
                Invading Ukraine puts all that, and his life, at risk. So it is reasonable to assume he has motives that overwhelm those things.
                One such motive, the only one I can come up with, is that he sees Ukraine's current situation and geopolitical maneuvering as an existential threat to Russia (as diplomats and analysts have been saying about Ukraine for 30 years)
                If the status quo in Ukraine is, or is becoming, an existential threat to Russia then he can't end the invasion without achieving his goals* or, in his assessment, he's condemning Russia to death.
                *goals, same as they have been for 8 years:
                -Ukrainian neutrality codified in a constitutional amendment, thus no NATO
                -end of war on Donbas republics
                -recognition of LPR & DPR as independent
                -recognition of Crimea as Russian
                Added since invasion:
                -some disarmament, at least as regards weapons from NATO
                -expulsion of extremist (including neonazi) elements within the government and security state
                -elimination of extremist elements from the military/national guard

                What of those terms is worth Ukrainians dying for, and possibly expanding into world war 3 (which might go nuclear), with Ukraine completely destroyed because it is the initial battleground?

                1. Putin . . . has never faced much threat internally.

                  Then why is Navalny in jail?

                  1. Because he's annoying and funded by the west?

    3. Like there's money in that strategy...

    4. Raytheon, locheede, Boeing, general dynamics, Northrop Grumman.... Need I continue

      1. Yup, they would all lose out on the big payday, plus 10% for the big guy, if peace was negotiated.

    5. Because simps like Mickey Rat feelz good about themselves for being absolute internationalists willing to sacrifice other people's lives to flatter their own narcissistic conception of virtue.

  7. 4 ways China is quietly making life harder for Russia

    https://www.cnn.com/2022/03/17/business/china-russia-sanctions-friction-intl-hnk/index.html

    The mainstream press and liberal elites def not bought and paid for by China.

  8. Chief among them is an acceptance by Ukraine that it should be neutral and should not apply to join Nato...

    The genius invaded to make known to Ukraine they shouldn't seek NATO protection?

    1. Kind of like how a Mafia guy would convince a business owner 5o not seek police protection.

      1. The Ukrainians seem to be more like Vito Corleone than Signor Abbandando.

    2. It's more that he invaded to make torpedo any chance at NATO membership.

      NATO accepting a new member that's currently at war would mean NATO declaring war right then and there. It's theoretically possible, but highly unlikely that enough of NATO would approve.

    3. There's a bit more nuance than this take. The proxy war building on 'his' border is a good place to start. I don't know if there was a better solution, since I don't have all the information -the amount of rhetoric and grandstanding is deafening, but there surely were different possibilities. Preferably none of them with US involvement, though that ship has sailed.

      1. He could've organized a coup I suppose. I imagine he would've if the capability were there, but I'm sure Ukrainian political power is as fortified by the west as our own election was.
        At this point, I don't think there were any good solutions. Russia has tried diplomacy for years. Ukraine has broken the Minsk 1 and 2 ceasefire every time, was continuing to build up its military (with US taxpayer money) even as its economy continued getting worse, and increasing NATO involvement.
        Russia amassed the invasion force to signal intent as clearly as possible, and still tried to come to a diplomatic agreement short of war. Zelensky/Ukraine refused the very reasonable terms, not for the benefit of Ukrainian but for oligarch, both in Ukraine and the anglosphere, interests.
        I think it turned into a "now or never" moment, where the only chance Putin saw to survive and avoid a repeat of the 90s (but worse) was invasion.
        We'll see how it turns out.
        One thing I'm confident of: Russian failure in Ukraine will be far worse for the world, and us specifically, than Ukraine capitulation.

  9. "The U.S. "can't fund COVID treatments for the uninsured because we spent trillions of COVID aid on wasteful garbage"

    but enough about the vaccine

  10. And there is something called de-Nazification.

    Corporate media in the States informs me that Ukraine's Nazis are the nuanced kind.

    1. Forget Ukraine, we need some de-Nazification right here.

      1. Nazi nazi or regular nazi?

    2. Apparently all it took to deniazify the place in the eyes of Corporate Media was for Putin to declare war on it. Ta-da! Mission accomplished!

  11. "What can we take from this?"

    My takeaway is that we Koch / Reason libertarians got what we wanted — a Joe Biden Presidency — so let's just drop this Hunter Biden nonsense.

    #DefendBidenAtAllCosts

    1. Yeah, but spittin tobaccy is HAPERINFLATED, OBL. The price of a chaw is getting up there.

      1. It’s an outrage! 10¢ a pouch!

        1. I’m guessing it’s up 15 cents now.

          1. And just try to find a good, used spittoon!

  12. "There were reasons to be skeptical of the Post's story," as Reason's Jacob Sullum noted yesterday.

    Crackhead loses laptop. The only reason to 'doubt' is that you wanted to. Eat shit and die, Reason.

    1. Last Sept:

      Politico confirms Hunter Biden laptop emails after media declared story 'Russian disinformation' amid election
      https://www.foxnews.com/media/politico-hunter-biden-laptop-story-russian-disinformation

      "A person who had independent access to Hunter Biden’s emails confirmed he did receive a 2015 email from a Ukrainian businessman thanking him for the chance to meet Joe Biden. The same goes for a 2017 email in which a proposed equity breakdown of a venture with Chinese energy executives includes the line, ‘10 held by H for the big guy?’" the Playbook wrote. "Emails released by a Swedish government agency also match emails in the leaked cache, and two people who corresponded with Hunter Biden confirmed emails from the cache were genuine."

      1. Also, that Tony Bobalinski guy.

        1. Yeah but Trump invited him to SOTU or something so he’s an obvious liar.

    2. "There were reasons to be skeptical of the Post's story,"

      At this point, when the MSM screams at the top of their lungs that we should be skeptical of a story, or its misinformation, isnt it basically a confirmation that its true?

      1. Yesterday's conspiracy theory is today's old news the last couple of years for sure.

        1. What difference, at this point, does it make?

      2. "Sure, but on certain things we can 100% trust their word- like foreign policy and geopolitics!"

        -neoboomer libertarians

      3. That's my takeaway. All those Crazy Crackpot Conspiracy Theories from years past now seem far more credible.

      4. The only appropriate response when people bring up Qanon: Who we’re Epstein’s clients, and do you believe he killed himself?

        1. And why have NONE been prosecuted or investigated?

    3. Every breaking story deserves some skepticism and questioning.
      By October, I don't think there was any question that many of the emails were ligit.

    4. Mind you, there was no reason to skeptical that Trump established a backchannel communication with Alfa Bank because he was in collusion with Vladimir Putin to steal the 2016 election.

  13. The bills (S.B. 469 and H.B. 647) would guarantee that all criminal and civil proceedings will be open to virtual audio and video public access

    Just look at the flood of information we benefited from in Kyle Rittenhouse's trial and Darrell Brooks Jr.'s Ford Escape's court proceedings.

    1. Are you saying you think Rittenhouse’s trial wasn’t adequately open or adequately covered by the media?

      1. No. He is saying you retarded leftist fucks didn't care about the evidence and kept repeating lies like traveling across state lines even with the trial public.

        1. At least there was some variety of opinion in that case.

          Had FoxNews on this morning- endless stream of warmongering backed up by baseless assertions, sensationalist rhetoric, and multiple outright lies (that have already been proven).
          There is no dissent allowed, left and right media/politicians/pundits speak with one voice.
          As we saw with covid, they are going to destroy our lives.

      2. Damn you’re dense.

      3. Selectivity is what's being lampooned, via the mention of the Waukesha attack in comparison to the Rittenhouse shootings.

    2. "Fiona Apple is on fire right now."
      I seem to recall a 70s porn flick title "Fiona on Fire."

  14. https://twitter.com/drraghibali/status/1502227984165617665

    5. There is no clear relationship between levels of excess mortality and different levels of restrictions/ NPIs across Western Europe or indeed the whole of Europe. (The much higher Covid death rates in Central and Eastern Europe are mainly due to lower levels of vaccination.)

  15. "Reason's Natalie Dowzicky on the controversy surrounding Lia Thomas, a transgender woman who won the NCAA Division I women's swimming championship."

    Still waiting for Reason's official LGBTQIA+ correspondent Scott Shackford to opine. Hopefully he'll do what he does best: diagnose cisfemale complainers with some form of TRANSGENDER PANIC.

    #TransWomenAreWomen

    1. Just because they saw a penis in the woman’s locker room. So intolerable.

      1. You know how libertarianism notoriously has difficulty appealing to women?

        I have the perfect solution. More columns by a gay cisman in which he scolds women for not wanting to see cock & balls in female-only spaces.

        #WhyDidNobodyThinkOfThisEarlier

        1. Awesome.

        2. Credit where credit is due: +++

  16. Can Missouri prevent people from leaving the state to visit abortion clinics?

    They can only legally block interstate travel if a life is going to be terminated via COVID-19 infection.

  17. The story was quickly panned by prestige media and denounced by Democrats, who characterized it as an attempt to make then-candidate Joe Biden look bad and possibly another attempt by Russians to influence a U.S. presidential election. Even mentioning it to criticize it was frowned upon by some on the left.

    And completely ignored by certain less prestige, ostensibly libertarian media, as I recall....

    1. Like any news media has any prestige.

    2. Not ignored. Called Russian disinformation by ex CIA officials. That report when out more often than the contents of the laptop.

      1. Well, ex-CIA officials would never say or do anything dishonest!

      2. NYT said it was reckless for anyone to even talk about it, when you could have done some simple fact-checking within a couple of days to prove its veracity.

        1. I'm sorry, did you go to Hollywood Upstairs Journalism College Columbia School of Journalism? No? Then shut up and accept what you're told!

      3. And that was actual disinformation. Greenwald had a great piece recently about that and many other examples of true misinformation and disinformation from mainstream news outlets over the past several years.

        1. Whole anthologies could be written.

  18. ...a multi-agency task force consisting of federal, state, and local police that was created to monitor protests in Minnesota during the murder trial of former police officer Derek Chauvin continued to operate in secret after the trial's conclusion...

    They already had the patches made up and stitched into their BDU's.

    1. Trump's Secret Police are at it again!

  19. The U.S. "can't fund COVID treatments for the uninsured because we spent trillions of COVID aid on wasteful garbage..."

    To be fair the money was half the reason COVID-19 was over-hyped in the first place.

    1. Because Big Pharma corporations are greedy capitalist profit seekers?

      1. How cute. You think government forcing all citizens to buy multiple products from a company is capitalism.

        1. No he doesn't. He's just a lying shit-weasel.

      2. Yes, dipshit. That's literally why the free market works and that's also why it's a bad idea to use the force of government to help greedy capitalist profit seekers extract money from people against their will.

  20. Moderna is seeking authorization for a second COVID-19 booster for all adults.

    For Ukraine.

  21. ...Natalie Dowzicky on the controversy surrounding Lia Thomas, a transgender woman who won the NCAA Division I women's swimming championship.

    An ERA supporter's dream.

    1. Finally, women are now equally able to officially lose in sports to men. We just had to assume they would get dominated in the past

      1. As I’ve said before, there is only one way this goes away: The women who participate in these sports need to refuse to participate. Jump into the pool when the bell rings, then just stop and tread water. Let the spectacle of a lone tranny racing itself in a pool play out for all to see.

        1. and also when the public outrage becomes enough that the large amount of voices, both on the actual teams but also in the public square, feel they can call BS on this without feeling like they will get doxxed, defamed, and harassed by the media which they for sure would.

          Right now everyone is pretending the emperor absolutely has clothes and nothing to see here. I dont know what shoe needs to drop for it to be OK to say ..."um this is 100% delusional" but right now everyone is being either too polite, too PC, or just scared to call this what it is.

          1. It takes real balls to be a champion women's swimmer.

        2. The dumb cunts all universally support this shit. They get everything they deserve and more.

          1. They really don't. But they're afraid of having the rest of their lives ruined if they say anything.

            https://www.theblaze.com/news/female-u-penn-swimmer-speaks-out-over-biologically-male-transgender-teammate-says-team-is-angry

  22. "In a phone call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Russian President Vladimir Putin laid out his demands for striking a peace deal with Ukraine."

    Peace deal? That would be bad from a Koch / Reason libertarian POV in two major ways.

    First, the longer the war goes on, the more refugees it will create. And more refugees means more cost-effective laborers who might end up in the US where they can work for our billionaire benefactor Charles Koch. (Fiona has milked this idea for like 5 columns already.)

    Second, as the war drags on it becomes increasingly likely the US will commit to direct military involvement. Hopefully we'll soon have the US - Russia war that #TheResistance has advocated since 2016.

    #LibertariansForWarWithRussia

    1. We can only achieve peace and freedom when the bodies are stacked like cordwood.

  23. Will Joe Biden Oversee The Collapse Of The U.S. Dollar?
    https://thefederalist.com/2022/03/17/will-joe-biden-oversee-the-collapse-of-the-u-s-dollar/

    The Wall Street Journal reported an exclusive on March 15 indicating another step towards the dollar’s loss of reserve currency status: Saudi Arabia is considering accepting yuan instead of dollars for oil sales to China. As the Journal noted, this “would dent the U.S. dollar’s dominance of the global petroleum market.”

    ...Regardless of who the good guy is in the Russia-Ukraine conflict (if there is one), or what role the United States should play (if any), it’s vital to think through the consequences of the dollar losing its status as the world’s reserve currency. Simply, it would mean a dramatic drop in the standard of living and quality of life for middle-class Americans. For the world, it would mean a realignment of the global economic and financial order.

    Reserve currency status means central banks around the world hold dollars in reserve, as an enormous amount of global trade is priced and conducted in dollars. For U.S. citizens, this means a greater quality of life and standard of living, at least in terms of purchasing and financing power, and greater incomes and general economic efficiency.

    Reserve currency status also gives the United States a great amount of power and influence over world affairs. Amid the Russia-Ukraine war, Biden slapped economic sanctions on Russia, essentially denying Russia access to dollar reserves. In this, Biden has weaponized the dollar against Russia. Over the last decade or so, the United States has increasingly done likewise to countries that have failed to conform to the United States’s foreign policy goals.

    The problem for the United States is, Russia and other countries are now looking for alternatives to the dollar. Sanctions coupled with the Fed’s massive inflation of the dollar supply since the economic crisis of 2008 ($25 trillion, including $9 trillion for the covid response), has shaken confidence in both the U.S. government and the dollar as the world reserve.

    Many countries no longer trust the United States, and they are losing faith in the dollar as a stable medium of exchange and store of value. Simply put, the United States has abused the dollar’s standing as the world reserve.

    1. dramatic drop in the standard of living and quality of life for middle-class Americans.

      A long held dream of democrats is now within reach!

      1. They weren't kidding when they set out to make 50 Californias.

    2. It’s very possible, even though he’s a senile old man with almost no clue of what’s going on.

      The bad news is that Block Insane Yomomma, the real president illegally running his unconstitutional third term from deep inside his heavily fortified eight million dollar bunker in Kalorama, wants to bankrupt and destroy America. The even worse news is that he’s very much succeeding.

      So yes, it’s quite possible that these could be the last days of America’s position as the pre-eminent nation in the world we’re living in right now.

      1. Why do you call him “Block Insane Yommoma?”

        Is it like a joke?

        1. Because it annoys you and all the rest of his cult followers so much.

    3. The empire is disintegrating all around us.

  24. Santa Barbara lawmakers want to declare Chick-fil-A a public nuisance.

    Success is a nuisance in California.

    1. we will see who wins in the fight of virtue signaling vs tasty fried food

      1. Tasty? I ate Chik-Fil-A twice in my life, when I was simply famished and had no quicker options and I just wasn't impressed. Not merely does the company endorse anti-LGBTQ+ marriage policies, but it doesn't even taste that good.

        Let the double drive-through lines partake if they wish of Dan Cathey's virtue-signalling with food and even get a "Woke" shoe-shine from Cathey if they are black, but as for me and my new air fryer, I will may never eat out anywhere again.

        1. Isn’t it only one of the owners, not the corporation itself, that supports anti-gay politics?

          1. The CEO chose to close on Sundays for religious reasons and made comments about traditional marriage. This upset the alphabet crowd and drove a boycott. The CEO basically said fuck off and it eventually blew over.

        2. Its one of those franchises that has been hyped beyond its actual tastyness, for sure. We had one in the hospital cafeteria, so ive had more than my share of it.

          But even the first time, its like In-N-out's hype in Ca...it had been billed as the best, most phenomenal thing and the secret menu and yadda yadda...and it was fine. Kinda meh to be honest.

          Sometimes I am in the mood for chick fila but there are way better chicken sandwiches in town. Some people do talk about it like its the best thing theyve had

          1. They used to have the best chicken sandwich around, but it feels like EVERYBODY is making pretty good chicken sandwiches now.

        3. Would you like a cookie for your virtue signal?

        4. The company doesn't endorse anything, and is completely non-discriminatory in who they hire and who they serve. They donated to certain charitable/social organizations which used to be considered completely unobjectionable, like the Boy Scouts and the Salvation Army.

          The move to declare this particular franchise a "public nuisance" is no doubt politically motivated. Other successful franchises like In-N-Out Burger have a bigger impact on neighborhood traffic and don't receive the same level of scrutiny.

        5. Not merely does the company endorse anti-LGBTQ+ marriage policies, but it doesn't even taste that good.

          The company has never held any position on LGBTQ+ marriage policies, and ever since its former CEO Dan Cathy got character assassinated by mindless faggot cocksuckers like you, the company has contributed millions of dollars to HRC and other gay rights groups.

  25. It is almost as if anti-abortion lawmakers are taking a page from those who sued gun msnufacturers in the 1990's...

    1. You don't understand. Those who sued gun manufacturers in the 1990s took a page out of the anti-abortion lawmakers of today.

      1. That would make for a pretty good, if niche science fiction flick.

  26. A bill that makes changes to TN's drug free school zone laws retroactive just passed the Tennessee House with a strong 81-7 vote!

    They need to clear prison cells for the influx of kids from those schools.

  27. What the "prestige" media and the social platforms did was commit slander, libel and fraud to suppress a story that was potentially harmful to Democrats and their candidate. This was more than just bad, This was undermining a culture of free speech and the press and honest elections. It is a black mark on the institutions that participated.

    1. They clearly suppressed the story, but what slander and libel?

      1. The computer repair guy ended up losing his shop after people attacked his business for being a Russian plant per the WaPo coverage dumbass.

      2. That is was false on its face. That it was Russian misinformation.

        1. Slander or libel requires a specific person as its target. Who was the specific target?

          1. The NY Post and the reporter.

            1. I had to go back and refresh my memory on precisely what the claim was about the New York Post’s reporters:

              https://www.thewrap.com/ny-post-hunter-biden-ny-times/

              The claim was neither wanted their name on the byline. Has this been shown to not be true?

              What claims were made against the Post? I recall questions about whether the laptop could be planted Russian disinformation, possibly using the repair shop owner or Giuliani as a dupe. That wouldn’t qualify as slander or libel.

              1. That it was hacked material dumbass.

                Seriously Mike, why do retreat to ignorance as a defense?

                1. Dee is a horrible combination of stupidity and dishonesty.

                2. why do retreat to ignorance as a defense?

                  It's not like he has any other options when the ActBlue PDF doesn't have an answer for the question at hand.

                  1. Is JesseAz saying I’m using ignorance as a defense. To do that, I’d have to be defending something.

                    Mickey Rat is the one who made an assertion about slander or libel or something, but hasn’t explained what he is referring to.

      3. They lied about how the laptop was acquired, calling the materials "hacked". That was just one example.

    2. Yet a black mark that some people are eager to overlook when the slander, libel, and fraud aligns with their own prejudices and shallow moral feelz.

      1. Says he with a plank in his eye.

        1. It's pretty hilarious to see you raging against the media spinning a story and then sucking up every piece of yellow journalism pro-Ukraine war propaganda like a sump pump on overdrive.

  28. Strangely enough, there's currently nothing in the Washington Post about NYT's new revelations concerning the Hunter Biden laptop.

  29. Moderna is seeking authorization for a second COVID-19 booster for all adults.

    If the booster is such a good idea, shouldn't the FDA/CDC initiate it?

    1. The FDA and CDC do not tolerate *good* OR *ideas*, so No.

  30. FBI Worked To Keep Alleged Conspiracist In ‘Violent’ Group Headed For Split
    https://www.dailywire.com/news/fbi-worked-to-keep-alleged-conspiracist-in-violent-group-headed-for-split

    GRAND RAPIDS, MI. — FBI agent Christopher Long used an informant to keep together a “violent” group on the verge of breaking up while an alleged conspiracy to kidnap Michigan’s governor was forming.

    Long interfered with the group to keep together a conspiracy that later implicated Barry Croft Jr. of Delaware, who Long said appeared close to separating from the group. Long instructed FBI informant Jennifer Plunk to massage the differences between Croft and the rest of the group in order to keep everyone together.

    “Keep working to solve the differences in the group. Try to show them that they were brought together by Croft and he has good ideas, you just have to find common ground. Show them the good ideas Croft brought and say what is workable and what is not. A compromise may be needed on both sides,” Long told Plunk in an August 10 message shared in court on Thursday.

    Croft is one of four men on trial for allegedly conspiring to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer.

    1. My thanks go out to the brave, hard-working FBI agents who solved this crime.

    2. You'd hate to see all that prep work go to waste, with the would-be perpetrators just giving up and going home instead of committing the actual crime as planned.

  31. We’ve spent 5 years waiting for Trump to be arrested for a variety of crimes, including illegal collusion with the Russian government, and it all turned out to be BS.

    Meanwhile, a real scandal with real evidence pops up and democrats and the media claim it’s a Russian plant without any evidence whatsoever and discussion online is censored until after the election.

    That isn’t how democracy is supposed to work. The so-called champions of democracy and truth don’t really mean it. They really think there’s no consequence for running an ideology on bullshit for years. They’re sorely mistaken.

    1. Seems like there are real scandals on both sides.

      1. Seems like there’s a two-year media delay and censorship campaign pointed only at one side.

        1. Ok, you just changed the topic and goal posts. We were discussing whether both major American political parties have scandals.

          Seems they both do — and, yes, the more biased media sources have lined up behind their respective parties — on both sides.

          Neither major political party is worthy of a libertarian’s support.

          1. I was discussing the political discussion with political parties and the media. See: the article, and my first comment.

            You’re changing the subject to a narrow sliver to avoid the broader conversation and it’s implications. And I completely understand why.

            1. Yes, and I started a branch of your discussion, with a separate, though related topic: namely, that both sides have scandal.

              I didn’t comment on media coverage of those scandals. Only on your insinuation that only Democrats have real scandals.

              1. I’m not forced to only discuss what you feel like, control freak. You’re not in charge of the conversation. Get over yourself.

                1. If you don't want him to hijack the conversation, don't reply. It's that simple. And easy too.

                  1. I thought you only discussed ideas. And yet you're saying what he should do.

                  2. Another thing I can do is just keep having the conversation I was already having before he hijacked. That's easy and simple, too. Look: I just did it a few minutes ago, and all he could do is bitch about it impotently.

                    1. Then don't reply. Like how I never reply to JesseAz.

                    2. There's a dozen or so trolls I have on mute because if I engage in any of their replies they will make the conversation about me, not whatever the topic was. Because they're masterbaiters I put them on mute rather than be tempted to defend myself from their lies. If Mike bothers you that much, mute him.

                    3. But I like replying more. It was an opportunity to point out how much of a petty control freak your friend Mike is. Why should I pass that up?

                    4. It was an opportunity to point out how much of a petty control freak your friend Mike is.

                      If he was my friend why would I suggest you ignore him?

                      Why should I pass that up?

                      Because you're not an asshole who gets off on being mean to strangers on the internet? Oh sorry. I was confused for a minute.

                    5. When did I suggest you do anything?

                    6. I wouldn't have to be mean if Mike would stop being a control freak. That's not exactly polite.

                    7. What is being mean going to accomplish other than giving certain trolls a hardon?

                      Here's a novel concept. Instead of calling people names you could tell them why they are wrong. I know it's silly and immature, but like whatever. Just thought I'd throw it out there.

                    8. Cue the tu quoque brigade in 3... 2...

                    9. You're going to have to try really hard if your plan is to shame me for calling out a control freak who needs to drive the conversation exactly to where he wants it to go and nowhere else as a strategy for avoiding the real issues.

                      But, go ahead and try. It should be amusing.

                    10. It always amuses me when sarc realizes he is a fucking hypocrite and immediately tries to call put other trolls when he realizes it.

                    11. Shame you? Why would I do that? Being a dick is a badge of honor around here. Personal attacks win arguments. I mean, why should you argue with what someone actually says when you can shut them down with personal attacks? If anyone is to be shamed, it's me for failing to use the word "you" in all of my replies.

                    12. What precisely am I controlling?

                      You said: “ We’ve spent 5 years waiting for Trump to be arrested for a variety of crimes, including illegal collusion with the Russian government, and it all turned out to be BS.

                      Meanwhile, a real scandal with real evidence pops up…”

                      This is a clear statement on your part that you don’t think Trump had any real scandal. I don’t agree and I stated my disagreement.

                    13. God, I'm really too bored of this to go back and play-by-play our conversation. There it is. Read it. Take what you will. Good luck!

                    14. Brian just smacked around Mike Liarson and poor old sarc, and they’re to dumb to realize it happened.

                    15. Cue the tu quoque brigade in 3... 2...

                      Rather hilarious considering that you interjected yourself into this conversation to rush to the defense of your butt buddy who literally invoked tu quoque in his very first reply in a desperate attempt to red herring the discussion.

                2. I wasn’t trying to control anything. I commented on one part of what you said, and then you responded to that comment by discussing the other part of what you said.

                  You seem to be conflating media coverage of scandals with whether scandals have occurred.

                  1. No, you're just changing the subject to something other than the main issue right now.

                    Do you really think the big takeaway from the article is "scandals have occurred"?

                    You're so full of shit, Mike.

          2. You don't understand. You have to support one side or the other. So if you are critical of Republicans then you support Democrats.

            It's like an atheist having a conversation with a Christian. "I'm an atheist. That means without faith." "Oh, so you worship the devil." "Uh, no. I don't worship anything." "Well you must worship something, and if you don't worship God then you worship the devil!" "No, that's not what I.." "Devil worshiper! Devil worshiper!"

            1. Oh please. If you can’t see the difference in the way the media and social media companies treated every possible Trump scandal vs. Biden, then you’re either a useful idiot or a dishonest fuck. Pick your favorite, straw-manning bullshitter.

              1. Part of the media. Not all of it.

                1. Reason too. Remember all those topics that people in the comment lament about Reason not reporting? Like Hunter's laptop. They've never done a piece about it.

                  1. Yeah, even though I linked to an example upthread. 🙂

                    1. What are they going to believe, the narrative or their lying eyes?

                2. Yeah, only part of the medi. My HomeTown Bubblefuck Gazzette didn’t kill stories about an international political scandal in a country we’re supporting in a war against Russia right now, so that completely makes up for the entire legacy media including the New York Times.

                  When you have to lose all sense of proportionality and reduce the issue into an overly simplistic “both aren’t perfect” vagueness to make you’re point, then you’re making the opposite point you think you are.

                  1. Not taking about your hometown paper. Fox News, OAN, New York Post, numerous radio and Internet news sources all covered the Hunter Biden laptop story.

                    1. Do you mean covered it by killing it? Your list of known news sources, FOX, OAN, The Post were easily hand waved away because, you know, right wing bias. The other numerous radio and Internet news sources rallied around the Russian misinformation narrative or shut the story down altogether, e.g. NPR. If the coverage was so good, and really got into the story, how come we have to have a second round of 'oh, by the way that story turns out to be true'? Did it take this long to get to the truth?

                    2. “hand waved away”

                      And yet everyone who wanted to know about Hunter Biden’s laptop found sources to learn all about it. Because both liberals and conservative have their echo chamber news sources.

                      It seems many here are complaining not about echo chamber news sources, but only about _liberal_ echo chamber news sources.

                    3. We still haven’t gotten down to all the truth. The liberal media clearly wanted to bury the story, but conservative media was too quick to do a victory lap without closely scrutinizing statements from clearly partisan, flakey sources such as GiulianI.

                    4. And yet everyone who wanted to know about Hunter Biden’s laptop found sources to learn all about it. Because both liberals and conservative have their echo chamber news sources.

                      I think this is the much larger issue. I agree about the echo chambers. It's your first sentence that tells the story. The news, and a story like this that has a direct correlation to a running candidate were buried by the liberal media. It isn't the people that wanted to hear the story that's important, it's the people that NEEDED to hear the story. That is the crime.

                      The victory lap is of little import, as it could be hand-waved away by any Biden supporter who bothered to venture into the Fox/Post echo chamber. But only because the other sources in their liberal echo rallied around the lie about disinformation or lack of credible source. NPR said, essentially, we won't bother to look into this because we don't want to see it and don't think you should either. Then 20 months later it is okay to bring it out?

                      These are not the same echoes. And the effect is not close in result.

                    5. This all gets into the territory of "People who don't agree with me politically need to be forced to hear the truth!"

                    6. The story was suppressed by Democrat propagandists who masquerade as mainstream news to apolitical voters, and Dee supports this because she’s a leftist masquerading as a libertarian.

              2. I'll agree that the media treats scandals differently. However the party faithful, of both parties, insist that only the other side has them.

              3. Oh, and nice comment about me as a person. Know what I call people who use the word "you" in every sentence? Trolls.

                1. You’ll get over it.

                2. It always ends up with a tantrum when Trump fans run out of talking points.

                  1. Two years later, it’s all about Trump to you.

                    You can’t see the problems our society has with the media and governance right now, and why? Because you have ridiculous, pointless quibbles to make about “both sides!”

                    Your distractions are ineffectual and get you nowhere.

                    1. I do acknowledge that there are news sources with left and right wing bias. But that wasn’t what I commented on.

                    2. Trump is still actively campaigning to the 2024 Republican candidate.

                    3. Trump is still actively campaigning to the 2024 Republican candidate.

                      No, he is not. Your comment was not about Trump's potential 2024 campaign anyway. You pathetically tried to insinuate that the people discussing something that has and had nothing to do with Trump are Trump supporters who "ran out of talking points" when they slapped you around like the stupid bitch you are after you tried to red herring the discussion of your candidate's son being involved in the biggest pay for play scandal in American history. Now shut the fuck up, little bitch.

                  2. what you and the progressive crew on here miss is that a lot of the people you argue with find trump anywhere from annoying to abhorrent, and dont subscribe to "trumpism" in any way shape or form, but they can see he was on to something about the media/establishment, and that the current democrats and progressives represent a substantial threat to freedom.

                    You guys have to either "both sides" every issue or take the progs side because "but TRUMP!" has blinded you with so much rage you cant possibly think critically about anything. I think its called "TDS" and it is certainly alive and well

                    1. Seconded.

                    2. ^+

                      That's the take. Too many of these stories that are buried, gaslighted or memory holed turn out to be true. The media is not held to any kind of standard, they can just say, 'oh, uh, sorry I missed that. Let me correct it now that it doesn't matter so the record is clear where we really stand on this'

                    3. I was a Trump cocksucker that voted for Gary Johnson.

                  3. That's not limited to Trump fans.

                    1. You buden cultists sure do call the kettle black.

                    2. Biden cultist call the pot black, the kettle black, then call you racist for pointing out they are both black.

                3. Thats all you've done this morning you hypocrite

                4. Know what I call people who use the word "you" in every sentence? Trolls.

                  You mean like you did for an 8 post-streak above where you took JesseAz to task even though you ostensibly have him muted? Lmfao.

                  1. Know what I call people who use the word "you" in every sentence?

                    I think it mostly pisses him off that no one cares what he thinks about that, or anything else, at this point.

              4. Sarc is both and more.

              5. When discussing some folks, it's often better to just drop the possibility of 'or' and go straight for 'and.'

          3. We were discussing whether both major American political parties have scandals.

            Actually nobody was discussing that. You introduced it in a desperate attempt to red herring the discussion away from the media complex that you supported.

            1. Bye bye, troll.

      2. It seems like we investigated with the resources of the entire federal govt and the nations full attention one side, complete with breathless minute to minute coverage of multiple public hearings full of nothingburgers, and the other we swept under the rug and called conspiracy

        but ya, bowf sides for sure

      3. Trump was just colonoscopized for over six years by the New York DA and they found literally nothing. Not even an unpaid parking ticket or jaywalking; literally no evidence of any crime whatsoever. It was so embarrassing to the office that several of the prosecutors involved had to resign over their failure to even bring any charges against him.

        So serious question, what was the real scandal with Trump?

        1. The 'scandal' involves millions of taxpayer dollars wasted 'investigating' someone for the crime of beating the hag in a presidential election.

        2. I think it can be summed up as "but IT WAS HER TURN!"

          1. She did break the glass ceiling in terms of most dishonest, least qualified, and 1st woman to collude with a foreign power to smear her opponent in an attempt to take the Oval Office.

      4. Of course there are. But only one side get's it's scandals censored and ignored by most of the mainstream media. Where with Trump every hint of a scandal, even if complete bullshit was amplified and repeated until people believed it was true. "He said drink bleach" "he said tiki-Nazis are good people", just two particularly glaring examples of the utter nonsense that was spread.

    2. And now there is a coordinated push to go to and support war against Russia. To not just encourage and support it, but indeed to sacrifice for it.

  32. Days since enbs last yglasias reffrence : 7

  33. Fucking Republicans and their new hard on for laws that the citizens enforce by lawsuit. Something the fucking Democrats can’t wait to do too. It’s a slippery slope to a really bad place where we’re all being pestered by busy bodies. I thought they have always been the “leave people alone” party.

    1. And attempts to keep people from crossing state lines to avail themselves of the different laws there is reprehensible. It’s textbook authoritarianism.

      1. You mean like the rittenhouse kid who “crossed state lines”?

      2. And attempts to keep people from crossing state lines to avail themselves of the different laws

        I must have missed the border checkpoints in Texas. Or possibly you're just a lying piece of shit and that isn't actually happening. Unlike, say, in Washington DC where barbed wire and concrete barriers are being used in conjunction with a politically-vetted praetorian guard to keep out American citizens.

    2. Oh. Didn't know a fetus wasn't a person. When did we decide on that again? I thought they had unique DNA for the most part making them an individual.

      We should also allow parents who adopt to simply leave the adopted kids out in the forest or desert when the kid becomes inconvenient.

      Both instances require an active action by someone. So both should be treated the same right?

      1. Where the fuck did I say anything about abortion?

        The problem is the enforcement mechanism.

        But now that you mention it I think it’s flagrantly unconstitutional to prohibit travel between the states by free citizens for any reason.

        I’ve long thought that the progressives were the biggest threat to our liberty, and I still do, but damned if the Republicans aren’t trying to make it closer.

        1. Where the fuck did I say anything about abortion?

          It's JesseAz. He's a master baiter who tries to get you to react to accusations of things you never said nor did. I find his comments look really good in grey.

          1. It’s a shame because every once in a while he has a good point to make. But most of the time he spends ankle biting.

            1. You two psychotic little liars having a nice date, Mike?

            2. I'll have to take your word for it. I've never seen him make a point, let alone a good point. All I've ever seen him post is personal attacks.

              1. It’s pretty infrequent. And the rare good point is always accompanied by a personal attack, of course.

                1. Then as far as I'm concerned it's only a personal attack. A good point accompanied with a fuck you is pretty worthless, because an attempt to have a conversation about the point is impossible. Any reply will be met with another fuck you. So fuck him.

                  1. You two sure do talk about other people a lot as you cry about other people talking about you.

                  2. A good point accompanied with a fuck you is pretty worthless

                    You never even accompany your constant stream of invective with a good point. You should have thought this one through a little bit. Then again, if you were able to do so you wouldn't post the ridiculous shit you do.

            3. Lol. 90% of my posts are informative.

              You two hypocritical shits are so fucking annoying that I spend 10% of my time showing you how big of hypocrites you two are.

        2. new hard on for laws that the citizens enforce by lawsuit.

          This is in reference to the Texas abortion law is it not?

          1. It’s a reference to the ENFORCEMENT MECHANISM of the Texas law. Not the content of the law itself.

            Get it? Just to be clear because you’re comprehending poorly, it’s the ENFORCEMENT MECHANISM that I’m talking about. Because California is trying to copy the ENFORCEMENT MECHANISM for gun control, which is going to be a clusterfuck. And now Missouri is using the ENFORCEMENT MECHANISM to hassle people for driving.

            Do you understand now?

            1. Except it won't work in all cases as an enforcement mechanism where rights are explicitly. Prof Turley went over this in depth after Newsome comments on using it for the 2a.

              Do you understand now?

              So far the only use is regarding abortion. It is inherently tied to abortion.

              And don't act like the left has been attempting worse with product liability suits against guns.

              Do you understand now?

              When you state a complaint linked to one issue, the complaint is about that issue.

              Do you understand now?

              1. Because laws like this are always narrowly interpreted in favor of the citizens, right? There are never unintended consequences or mission creep, right?

                You don’t like it and will never admit it, but the Republicans are every bit as authoritarian as the Democrats. If the Democrats passed a law making it a crime to drive somewhere to legally buy a gun you’d go bat shit crazy because you’re a hypocrite.

      2. Identical twins and clones are also individuals who deserve basic human rights.

      3. We should also allow parents who adopt to simply leave the adopted kids out in the forest or desert when the kid becomes inconvenient.

        This isn't really a gotcha. Maryland has legalized infanticide-by-neglect for up to 28 days after birth.

    3. Republicans never intended for Democrats to use the same tactics, so you're wrong.

    4. Something the fucking Democrats can’t wait to do too.

      They're so ready for it, they've already been doing it for years.

      1. No they haven’t been using this hands off enforcement mechanism for years. But they’re sure as hell copying it now. Gun owners on California who haven’t done a damn thing wrong are about to get the full hassle treatment.

    5. The GOP has never been about leaving people alone - just a different set of things they want to ban or mandate.

  34. Looming food shortages is the next ‘slow-moving disaster’ to hit world
    https://nypost.com/2022/03/17/looming-food-shortages-is-worlds-next-slow-moving-disaster/

    Food prices are already skyrocketing. Some — a lot — of this comes from inflation caused by runaway government spending over the past two years. Some is from supply-chain issues. But a new problem is rearing its head, and government officials seem as likely to make it worse as to make it better.

    That problem is shortages of food and fertilizer brought about by the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the sanctions enacted by the West in response.

    Ukraine is a major wheat producer, but war is likely to ensure a poor spring planting and harvest. Russia is also a major grower, but sanctions and war will prevent it from exporting to most of the world.

    Russia is also a major manufacturer of fertilizer; in fact, it is the world’s largest. Second on the list is … China, a nation aligned with Russia and notably unfriendly to the United States and the West. (Canada is a distant third.) That has people worried.

    The Green Markets North American Fertilizer Index, already high, jumped 16% last Friday. Urea, a major fertilizer ingredient, went up 22%. Potash, another major ingredient (Russia is the top producer), increased 34% in Brazil, the world’s leading fertilizer importer. The price for standard “starter fertilizer” 10-34-0 is up 49% from a year ago and likely to go much higher.

    Bloomberg analyst Alexis Maxwell calls it “a slow-moving disaster.”

    1. Isn’t this why we have farm subsidies? Secure domestic food production? Why, after all those payments, do we not have food security, or even stable food prices, when we need it?

      The whole system is bullshit, people. Wake up. Stop listening to the known liars. They don’t have your best interest at heart.

    2. Russia is also a major manufacturer of fertilizer; in fact, it is the world’s largest. Second on the list is … China

      We just need Biden's administration to work up a collective farming plan with those countries. A 5-year plan should do the trick.

      1. Five years to grow the bread.

    3. Russia is also a major manufacturer of fertilizer; in fact, it is the world’s largest. Second on the list is … China

      There is also a joke in there about Putin and the CCP being the largest suppliers of bullshit in the world.

    4. And like the oil crisis, it will all be Russia's fault and the Biden regime will have no culpability whatsoever.

    5. More lies from the NY Post. Remember that Hunter Biden laptop scandal that was pure Russian misinformation?...

      Oops.

  35. "Tweets about the Post article—an apocryphal tale of Hunter Biden's lost laptop and hard drives being discovered with incriminating evidence about his father on them—were temporarily blocked by Twitter...
    In both instances, Republicans argued that private tech companies couldn't control content on their own platforms as they saw fit. But the First Amendment says otherwise...
    Social media companies are not required to be neutral arbiters of political speech, nor required to platform any particular type of speech (despite what unconstitutional new laws in states like Texas and Florida say). For this, we can thank the First Amendment...
    That protection is something both Republicans and Democrats, as well as everyone else, should be glad about...
    Tech companies face an increasingly uphill battle on this front. On one side, GOP leaders want to force Facebook, Twitter, and their ilk to provide a megaphone for former President Donald Trump..."

    https://reason.com/2021/09/14/fec-twitter-blocking-the-hunter-biden-story-wasnt-election-interference/

    Slightly cherry picked but you get the jist.

  36. • The U.S. "can't fund COVID treatments for the uninsured because we spent trillions of COVID aid on wasteful garbage," writes Reason's Eric Boehm.

    • Moderna is seeking authorization for a second COVID-19 booster for all adults.

    Sigh. The problem is, I have no idea if ENB is being clever or stupid with this juxtaposition. Most of the Reason folk continue to harp on triple boosting even as they admit that the vaccine doesn't do what they said it would do.

    1. You’re right that I don’t know what you think. I can only judge you by your actions.

      You give 10% of your income to a racist, homophobic, transphobic church. You send your kids out to recruit for them.

      You decided to join this church as an adult, so you can’t claim you were brainwashed from birth.

      You’re friends with a pig and a teacher who indoctrinates kids. At the same time you constantly complain about “CRT” and “Marxists.”

      You’re a bad person.

      1. God, you are unhinged. Go away.

        1. Fuck off slaver

          1. Clever

            1. Yes it is clever because I’ve seen magic underwear bitch boy say it.

              Again fuck off slaver! Stop sticking up for tyrants like Chuck!

              1. Fuck off and die, slaver.

                1. Good to hear something other than “flag refresh”

      2. I can only judge you by your actions.

        No, you can't.

        1. Why not?
          I’m all for forgiveness and leaving the judgment to people smarter than me, but not while your church is actively harming people.

          1. No, I mean you actually can't. You argue in nothing but syllogistic fallacies. Your conclusions are fatally flawed and cannot be considered to be rational judgement.

            Stick with that idea that other people are smarter than you. Most people, if we are being honest.

            1. You tell your perv worshipping pals in the PNW to get the fuck back to Utah. You people are too stupid and arrogant to realize that there are TENS OF THOUSANDS of people like me out there.

              Heads on pikes motherfucker! Heads on pikes!

              1. Syllogistic fallacies. And hate. And cubic buttload of hate.

                there are TENS OF THOUSANDS of people like me out there

                You sad, pathetic boy. Your logic fails you, even in your rage-fueled murder fantasies.

                Membership:
                9 Washington 287,433
                10 Oregon 153,936

                Get some help before you get hurt.

                1. You aren’t as smart as you think you are.

                  You won’t see us coming magic underwear bitch BOY!

                  1. You're more of an ignorant asshole than most of us can believe.
                    Fuck off and die.

                    1. Are you off the wagon again?

              2. Do it KARen, just do it! “Heads on pikes, motherfucker!”

                What’s stopping you, you shit talking, impotent pussy? No balls to back up your hate?

                Haha. What a doosh.

                1. Where do you live motherfucker?

      3. 'I can only judge you by your actions.' Odd, this is how we can tell that you are ignorant, stupid, biased, intolerant, and devoid of positive traits.

        1. Explain why?

    2. Also why do you want me to complain to the police in person? So they can screw with me? I’m not doing anything illegal! That would only prove my point that you’re a bunch of fascists.

      So that my friends, family, and coworkers think I’m some nut job hater? They all know how I feel and support my hatred because they’re decent people. I’ve told them my experiences with you scumbags and they hate Mormons too. Not as much as me…

      1. You assholes are too arrogant consider you’re the ones in the wrong. You hate people because of their skin color or who they love.

        We are the ones who love are fellow human beings. You base your bigotry on a discredited 19th century con artist perv. It’s not our fault you’re too arrogant to spend 30 seconds on the internet to see your religion is a crock of shit.

        1. *our

          Please forgive my typos. I had a great St Pattys day.

        2. We are the ones who love are fellow human beings.

          Yeah. That message is really resonating here.

          1. You’re the one sticking up for a racist, homophobic bigot.

      2. you’re a bunch of fascists
        I’ve told them my experiences with you scumbags
        You assholes are too arrogant
        We are the ones who love are fellow human beings.
        You hate people because of their skin color or who they love
        It’s not our fault you’re too arrogant

        You project characteristics and motives on a heterogeneous body of people while declaring your own motives to be pure and universally shared among your group. Glaring bigotry in a diatribe against bigotry. I pity you your ignorance.

        1. God damn you can’t reason with people who believe in golden plates and magic underwear. Your church has created an army of arrogant morons.

          You, Russ Nelson, Romney, Mike Lee can say whatever you fucking want about not being bigots.

          You all fund a church that actively try’s to overturn gay marriage laws. A church that teaches Native Americans(and until 78 blacks too but you’re all hush hush bout that) aren’t white because of sin. A church that has covered up sexual assaults and child abuse.

          You can say whatever you want magic underwear BOY! Your tithing funds despicable things.

          Arrogant fucking bigot

          1. Arrogant fucking bigot

            I see you affixed you signature to this one for posterity.

            1. I don’t care if people believe whatever disproven nonsense they want if it doesn’t affect me. Unlike you I’m a live and let live kind of guy.

              I went to Utah with an open mind and was treated like shit for daring to suggest they treat EVERYONE with respect.

              Mormons are fucking scumbags.

              You’re the bigot you stupid asshole. Your the one who finances discrimination against gays. You’re the one who finds a church that teaches non-whites are that way because of skin.

              It’s not my problem you’re too arrogant to do 30 seconds of research and see your prophet is a PROVEN FRAUD.

    3. I realize most think I’m a nut. I don’t care what a bunch of QAnon followers think. Maybe my nuttiness will get people’s attention and wake them up to your evil church. I know being reasonable with the Mormons didn’t fucking work.

      I don’t care if you point out it’s fallacious: you people will never consider you’re wrong about anything because you’re “following Heavenly Father’s plan.” That arrogance and breeding like rabbits creates any army of unreasonable bigots.

      Heads on pikes!

      1. “You shouldn’t call people Kikes”
        “You shouldn’t call people Fags and punish kids for simply being gay”
        “You shouldn’t use the n word”
        “That’s not corporal punishment. That’s child abuse.”
        “That’s sexual assault. You should call the police”

        According to the Mormons my friends, family, and I were wrong for saying these things.

        I don’t give a fuck how you think or feel! YOUR TITHING FUNDS THAT SHIT MOTHERFUCKER!

        Heads on pikes magic underwear BOY!!

        1. To be fair calling the police in Utah wouldn’t do shit cuz Mormons look out for other Mormons first.

        2. We are the ones who love are fellow human beings.

          Yup, checking it again. Really coming through.

          Lot of religions in our country:
          Christians
          Catholics
          Jewish
          Mormon
          Baptist
          Muslim
          Hindu
          Buddhists
          The Born again
          Athiests
          The Great Spaghetti Colander in the Sky
          Sorry if I missed yours

          We get it. You don't like Mormons. Move on.

          1. I don’t care what people believe as long as it doesn’t infringe on my friends and family’s rights.

            Mormons infringe on my rights. They gotta go!

            1. You.
              Are.
              Full.
              Of.
              Shit.
              And an ignorant asshole besides.
              Make the world a better place: Fuck off and die.

              1. What happened to “flag refresh?”

          2. No no, she really likes Mormons. That's why she's always trolling for another Missionary Gangbang.

      2. I realize most think I’m a nut.

        You are a pants-shitter. You seek to make conversation impossible by jumping in and stinking the place up so badly that everyone flees. It is horribly dishonest.

        You certainly are not convincing anyone that anybody but you is a bigot.

        1. I don’t care what a bunch of slack jawed Qanon followers think. Especially ones who’d stick up for a racist, gay hating bigot like you.

  37. Reason knew it was real. They knew that the Biden's were doing pay for play. But like all the other organizations they suppressed it because orangemanbad,

    FBI Not Playing Along as Trump Tries To Implicate Joe Biden in Crimes

    It looks like President Donald Trump is hoping for a redux of 2016's announcement that the FBI was investigating Hillary Clinton. With less than two weeks until the 2020 election, Trump is filling rallies and airtime with suggestions that Democratic nominee Joe Biden may be guilty of unspecified federal crimes.

    But Trump is also frustrated that Attorney General Bill Barr and FBI Director Christopher Wray haven't played along and announced that the Biden family is under investigation, according to The Washington Post and "people familiar with discussions" at the White House.

    Anonymous White House sources should be taken with many grains of salt, of course. But Trump himself has been publicly spouting similar rhetoric. He told Fox News on Tuesday that Barr should "act fast" because "this is major corruption" and it "has to be known about before the election."

    "We've got to get the attorney general to act," Trump said while discussing the recent New York Post story based on emails allegedly obtained from Hunter Biden's laptop and hard drive. The emails purportedly show Hunter saying he would introduce his dad, then vice president, to Chinese and Ukrainian business contacts.

    1. The real story is about how Trump tried to weaponize the FBI.

      1. The FBI that was spying on him at the behest of his political opponents?

  38. Another example of how combating "misinformation" may obscure the truth.

    "may". Well, that's generous of you.

    1. Nobody was combatting misinformation. They knew damn well it was legitimate and covered it up to protect "their side".

      1. That's the whole point of "suppressing misinformation", to protect the official narrative.

        1. Yup. "Misinformation" in this context is "facts that will be admitted when it no longer matters."

      2. They were actively creating and disseminating misinformation.

    2. when they use the word "misinformation" what they mean is "heresy"

  39. voters can't have known what to make of Trump's scattered insinuations and accusations about the Biden family. Trump careened wildly between random pieces of his Biden conspiracy theory, wielding references to laptops, nicknames, and Anthony Bobulinski like weapons without ever explaining fundamentally what he was talking about.
    https://reason.com/2020/10/23/was-the-final-presidential-debate-incomprehensible-to-normies/

    It was a non-corrupt presses job to explain and not dismiss it as crazy like you did, ENB.

    1. Yeah, Trump was all over the map with his accusations of wrong-doing against Biden and Clinton and Obama. While the Dems were totally focused on a string of actual violations Trump committed over the years, all of which were borne out by further investigation and scrutiny. Oh, wait....

      1. The amazing thing with Trump is he gets away with making hand-wavey, vague accusations about crooked Democrats, election fraud, etc. and his true-blue fans eat it up, as if he has actually said something of substance.

        1. The amazing thing is that you didn't realize CE was being sarcastic and replied like the credulous netroots retard you are.

  40. So: A story that initially seemed dubious turned out to have been true all along.

    Look, it was the times, man. If you were a journalist at that time and you weren't into TDS, you weren't really there.

    Translation: No, the story DID NOT INITIALLY SEEM DUBIOUS at the time. It looked air-fucking-tight at the time. Which is WHY the story was banned.

    1. It was dubious whether the story looked slimey and pretty bad for biden or wreaked of corruption and illegality.

      Hence why it needed to disappear in the context of a close election.

    2. But I'm told that censorship of opposing info/perspectives means you're on the right side of history.

  41. Banning or suppressing "misinformation" is STILL a mistake, even if the information really is false.

  42. Reason's Natalie Dowzicky on the controversy surrounding Lia Thomas, a transgender woman who won the NCAA Division I women's swimming championship.

    It really shouldn't be called a 'controversy'. The issue is pretty straightforward.

    1. wait, you mean not let the man with the cock&balls and the massive shoulders easily slap the women around?

      1. I've decided that I identify as a 12 year old girl.

        I am going to fucking clean up at the 13-and-under Jiu Jitsu tournament next weekend...

  43. >>Another example of how combating "misinformation" may obscure the truth.

    very simple requires few words: "combating misinformation is censorship"

  44. "Even mentioning it to criticize it was frowned upon by some on the left."

    That explains why ENB and Reason also refused to mention Hunter Biden's laptop prior to the November 2020 election.

    Also explains why self proclaimed libertarians at Reason voted for Biden and have terminal cases of TDS.

    1. The MSM has always done a fantastic job of turning any potentially bombshell story into "Republicans Pounce!" It immediately deflects attention and frames the conversation ABOUT the conversation, instead of dealing with the real facts.

      Hunter was selling access to his dad to his Ukraine contacts and Biden got someone investigating Burisma fired. It's a big fucking deal.

      1. If you define “MSM” as only major news outlets with liberal bias, ignoring major news outlets with conservative bias, such as Fox. Truth is both major political camps in this country have their echo chamber news sources.

        1. Yes, Fox is MSM. But who else provides any alternative? ABC CBS NBC CNN MSNBC WaPo NYT, etc. etc. are full on supporters not even of the left but of the Democrats at this point. A few online sources are getting bigger, but still have a pretty narrow audience.

          1. ^zeb said it more succinctly than I

          2. Fox really isn't that much of alternative.
            They had a covid counter, just like everyone else. Just one example

            1. I didn't say it was a good alternative. Just an alternative to the complete Democrat supporting leftiness of the rest of them. Fox is pretty much as mainstream and establishment as any of them, just a slightly different flavor.

          3. ABCNNBCBMSNBC is a Highly Respected news organization!

        2. Are we going to have to get a "bowf sides" counter for you today? I think that's up to 3 at least.

          Stop with the "if you define the MSM" or "what even is the MSM" schtick that you jeff and Tony participate in. You all know damn well its the many networks that pass around the same talking points, regurgitate the same info, all cite each other, get tips from the same "anonymous sources", and operate in lock step with the current "right-thinkers" in society from corporations, to Hollywood, to big tech, and are fully in bed with the DNC, the FBI, and politicians all throughout the democratic party.

          Saying "but FOX NEWS exists!" which is a single network that are essentially persona non grata in polite society, or "Ben Shapiro has a show!" doesnt make any better the mass coordination to spread DNC propaganda and silence any dissent as misinformation.

      2. It is more accurate to say Burisma was trying to buy access to Hunter’s dad. It’s not clear whether they got any.

        Joe Biden should have shut down his son’s activities. And still should shut down the art scam.

        1. Photographic evidence....of a nice golf foursome with POTUS Biden, his druggie son Hunter, that Archer guy (newly convicted and sent to prison - the business partner of Hunter the druggie), and a VP from Burisma. I am sure they only discussed how the ball lies on the fairway during their golf outing and nothing at all about Burisma's legal difficulties inside Ukraine.

          The art scam was corrupt AF. And that was after he took office.

          Go ahead, defend it. You have zero credibility (or integrity).

        2. Burisma is only one of many questionable business dealings. Whether Burisma got access is immaterial. The problem is, Hunter Biden had dealings with companies in Ukraine, Russia, and China, all of whom paid him ridiculous amounts of money for access.

          Hunter Biden is also a raging junking who leaves personal property lying around wherever, cavorts with hookers, throws guns in trash cans, etc. And now he's the son of the president. He's a fucking national security nightmare and should be on lockdown in some "rehab center" for the duration of the Biden presidency, to ensure that he does not end up in a Russian or Chinese prison and start actual WWIII.

        3. It’s not clear whether they got any.

          Hey, remember that time when Joe Biden spoke on video about how threatened to withhold a billion dollar aid package in exchange for getting the prosecutor investigating his son fired right at the exact same time when these emails date to?

  45. "And there is something called de-Nazification.

    This is deeply offensive to Mr Zelensky, who is himself Jewish and some of whose relatives died in the Holocaust, but the Turkish side believes it will be easy enough for Mr Zelensky to accept. Perhaps it will be enough for Ukraine to condemn all forms of neo-Nazism and promise to clamp down on them."

    Cue best Admiral Akbar impersonation.

  46. Since conspiracy theories are proving to be true lately, I'm referring everyone to look up "The Trayvon Martin Hoax," a documentary on youtube.

    The girl who testified at George Zimmerman's trial was NOT on the phone with him. She may have never even met Trayvon. Trayvon's actual girlfriend was her half-sister who did not want to testify, did not want to be involved. She was being bullied by a couple of Trayvon's friends and someone in the local media so she got her half sister to pretend to be her and to fake her testimony. Zimmerman filed a lawsuit about this very thing and it was dismissed because nobody wants to believe this ridiculous claim that might actually be true.

    1. Is the judge who threw out Zimmerman’s lawsuit supposed to be in on it, too?

      1. No, he's a guy who read "fake witness" and laughed because it's too absurd to believe. Because this sort of shit SHOULD be beyond the pale in our society and yet it somehow happened.

        Adding Martin's parents to the lawsuit was not a good look, and did more harm than good, even if heels aggrieved by them. But the prosecution relied heavily on Rachel Jeantal making statements to give the phony narrative, and they didn't dig through Martin's phone records at all because they didn't want to be seen investigating the alleged victim. If they had they would have gotten Diamond (Dee-Dee)'s picture and it did not match the girl who was on the stand.

        That's why Rachel Jeantal's story was so inconsistent and why she couldn't read the handwritten note that she supposedly wrote to Martin's mother. She didn't write it, she wasn't an actual witness.

        But no judge is going to take the political hit of allowing Zimmerman's lawsuit against the Martin family to go forward. Judges are political creatures.

        1. The dilemma here is I either have to believe that a bunch of people are in on a conspiracy to put an obviously wrong person on the stand, or I have to spend a bunch of my valuable time watching a video and other sources to find out if there’s any chance it’s true.

          I don’t care enough right now to make this a use of my time.

          1. It's not so much a conspiracy as it is a couple of people who knew better stayed silent and the prosecutor's office didn't ask questions they should have. Ben Crump had interviewed the actual girlfriend (I don't know if it was in person or over the phone) and should have known that Rachel Jeantal wasn't the actual girlfriend, but he didn't speak up.

            When the prosecutor's office went to meet with Diamond, they were told to go visit another house, where Rachel Jeantal showed up and told them she was Diamond. She had a rehearsed statement that sounded like what the prosecutors already wanted to believe, and they didn't press her on the things they should have in order to do their due diligence. Ben Crump's phone interview with the real Diamond had basically been him asking leading questions to give her a script for how to answer investigators, so she probably told Rachel what to say.

            The people who were "in" on the conspiracy was Diamond, who hid, and her half-sister. There were other people like Crump and some local reporter who knew, or should have known, that Rachel wasn't Diamond and kept silent because having a lying witness hurt their narrative.

            Another reason this story doesn't get traction is that the guy who investigated this is, by all measures, a right-wing kook. He's not the most credible person to break a story like this. However, the information he uses is publicly available. Trial records in Florida are open to the public so it's all out there, and it could be verified or disputed if anyone cared to dig into it.

  47. Does anyone get the impression that some commenters are really mad that conspiracy theories keep coming true?

    1. will Sullum make Robby read his "HBO Says No Riot So No Riot" piece?

      1. Will HBO be de-platformed by cable companies?

  48. Also: Han shot first

    https://twitter.com/RWApodcast/status/1504857036420485124?t=lG70adsbYD8Hx3_ycaaCzA&s=19

    The current conflict should be morally ambiguous even for people with Star Wars brains (Americans) because while the plucky rebels (Ukrainians) are fighting an Evil Empire (Russia), the other side also has plucky rebels (Donbass militias) fighting their own Evil Empire (Ukraine)

    1. Their heads seriously cannot handle anything but the propaganda they are fed.

      I am looked at like I have 2 heads by some of these people for simply saying "Putin sucks, but this is a complex issue, and its not our complex issue", and apparently some are being called traitors for this take.

      But if CNN tomorrow made the official line "its complicated, and maybe lets avoid nuclear war" their little sheep would turn in lock step to "hey man, its complicated!"

    2. Han was the only one who shot.

      1. Point remains.

        Didn't they do a remake though where the other guys does shoot (first) though?

    3. But it's not morally ambiguous. Putin sent an army to invade a sovereign country in order to fulfill his insane megalomaniacal fantasies.

      This whole thing is characterized by its lack of moral ambiguity. It's why Putin apologists all look so goddamn ridiculous. How many excuses has Putin offered for why he had to invade Ukraine? Like twelve?

  49. "So: A story that initially seemed dubious turned out to have been true all along."

    Nothing about the story seemed dubious. A known drug addict, whose only marketable characteristic is his father's name and connections, somehow lands high paying gigs with known corrupt entities. Said drug addict leaves his property laying around, and said property contains evidence of malfeasance, which is obtained and distributed by his father's enemies. It's banal, but in no way is it dubious.

    1. It wouldn’t have been if Rudy Giuliani had not been part of the chain of custody for the information copied from the laptop’s disk drive.

      1. Also, at the time, Trump invited Hunter’s business partner, who had confirmed the story of influence peddling, to sit in the front row at the Presidential debate, therefore making the business partners’ credibility questionable.

        Also, conservative media ignored that another of Hunter’s business partners swore there was no influence peddling. Why didn’t they report on what the other business partner said?

        Which gets back to my claim that _both_ liberal and conservative news sources spun the story.

        1. Yeah, we remember the ad homs from when you originally posted them, retard. As facile and idiotic as they were then, it's particularly embarrassing now.

  50. The other problem with the tranny swimmer incident is there is essentially no downside for someone thinking about doing this. I mean aside from the psychological trauma of being a tranny, but i mean, that goes hand in hand regardless.

    But I mean its all gravy. You go from being mediocre in your field to fucking Lebron James (you could literally do this in basketball). You get attention, fame, and potential big endorsement deals. Just wait, the tranny swimmer has a Nike deal or something else coming. The media fawns over you. And depending on your sexual preference, you get to go change in the girls locker room and see a bunch of super fit naked chicks.

    The only real loser is any woman who wanted to have a shot at winning first place.

    1. And if you're some washed up never was who only cares about hanging on to that feeling of being the best at something you could dominate well past the age of athletic excellence.

      If Mike Tyson took hormone suppressants for two years he'd be the most feared female boxer who ever lived even at the age of 57. He could literally kill a woman in the ring and be applauded for it because he was breaking boundaries.

      1. Media nitwits have been ripping on a director who made an offhand comment that Venus and Serena Williams "don’t play against the guys like I have to.”

        Some noted that Venus and Serena Williams could not only play against, but most likely beat, the men in their sport, as Campion had just done. https://variety.com/2022/film/news/jane-campion-apologizes-venus-serena-comment-1235204335/

        Of course, there was that time when the man seeded 200 in the men's circuit beat both sisters in their prime in back to back sets after having cocktails.

        Oops.

        1. the funny thing is despite that controversy with Mackenroe a while back, these woke zoomers who have 5 minute memories dont remember we already went over the Williams sisters in comparison to men.

          I have still heard, as recently as last week, the argument that Serena would beat the men...Mackenroe got in hot water for his matter of fact, evidence based statement that she absolutely could not compete with the men and that a guy not ranked that high dominated her, easily. This all happened and took up a few media cycles a while ago. But they have no memory of anything past the tiktok video they just watched so this might as well be ancient history.

        2. the hilarious way Vox, of course, covered it from 2017

          "Serena Williams’s legacy as the most dominant player in tennis speaks for itself. But this week, retired player John McEnroe — who himself is a legendary tennis player and member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame — decided to put his own strange stamp on it."

          Mentioning her as THE most dominant player in tennis, while then going on to say Mcenroe also happened to be a legendary tennis player as if they would not only be comparable or in the same league, but that she was hands down the GOAT despite that being specifically in womens tennis.

          This would be like saying "Lisa Leslie's legacy as the best basketball player of all time speaks for itself...Magic Johnson also was pretty good at basketball"

    2. The other losers are all the young, talented girls out there who won't have a shot at all, if this is allowed to be normalized. Every college scholarship for women's athletics will go to a biologically male athlete, because colleges like winning. What's the US women's Olympic program going to look like in five or ten years?

      If you're a young, talented female athlete, why even bother training at this point?

    3. Mediocre ish. Being the 400th best swimmer in the world is actually pretty impressive ish.

  51. In both cases, stories [the Hunter Biden laptop email and Covid lab leak theory] were initially met with skepticism (which is fine), from which folks quickly leaped to calling them misinformation and suggesting they should be off limits to read or share (not fine). In both cases, the stories turned out to have much more credibility than originally thought.

    In both cases the leap to "misinformation" status supported the Dems / left's political narrative. This phenomenon has literally never occurred in conflict with the left's political narrative. Not one single time.

    What an amazing run of luck.

    1. But some blogspot post from 2009 said bad things about Obama, so BOWF SIDES!!!

      t. Mike "White Knight" Laursen

  52. Somewhat OT: I'm surprised ENB hasn't covered this:
    Feeling lonely? You can now pay to cuddle with NC therapist. Here’s what it looks like
    Cassandre Coyer
    https://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/state/north-carolina/article259532409.html

    "I'd Buy That For $75!"

    --Robocop Tag-line, adjusted for Happerinflation. 🙂

  53. All it took for these “journalists” to verify the legitimacy of the story was to pick up a phone and call the computer repair guy. That’s it. They chose to purposely not do the easiest investigative journalism story of their life, and instead, disseminated completely baseless accusations that the story was “Russian disinformation”. They go to the same routine by getting crackpot former intelligence officials to backup their blatant lie just like they did with the 2016 (Russia interferes with Trump’s help) election and just like they did in 2020 by claiming it was the “safest election in history”. They knew the entire time the story was completely legitimate. The fact they didn’t even attempt to investigate and contact the source of the story, is the clear cut proof that they knew it was true the entire time. Joe Biden himself never even denied the accusations but these crooks ran to his defense like the lapdogs they are. These people deserve to be tortured for their malicious lies and grotesque violation of public trust.

    1. There were some who did that, and the computer repair guy gave flakey, changing stories, which took away from the credibility of the story.

      1. No, he did not. He said exactly the same thing every time he was asked, including when he was interviewed by the FBI. Now run back to Democratic Underground real quick and see if you can find somebody to feed you a cite. They won't. And you'll disappear like the little cocksucking faggot bitch you are and pretend like this never happened when you spout the same ignorant shit from your ActBlue PDF tomorrow.

      2. In truth left journalists were only interested in finding a justification to ignore the story, which they then fed to their readers.

        Actual journalists called the other people copied on the email and asked them to verify them, which they did. Left journalists refused to do this because they didn't want to have to report the results. Glen Greenwald wrote an article about this at the time which left wingers like Laursen refuse to address because it shows what propagandists they are.

  54. ENB, Sullum & Robbie on a zoom call.
    ENB: I've made a career out of regurgitating NYT talking points and linking twitter nerds. Now I feel like an ass being forced to admit the obvious about Hunter Biden. Jacob ya know you really set me up on this one.
    Sullum: Look. The boss wanted Biden and and we gave him Biden. Jesus Christ. I've spent a year sucking Adam Kinzinger's dick. Adam Fucking Kinzinger. Now you're all weepy and shit because you made an ass of yourself. I've been making an ass of myself for five fucking years. But the cash keeps rolling in.
    Robbie: Yeah you two have a lot to talk about and I'm not sure why I'm here. As you know I'm an influencer. An in demand talking head. I have my own TV show that was banned on Youtube. Let that sink in.
    ENB: Oh fuck you Robbie. Nobody noticed your show was banned until you whined about it because nobody watched it.
    Sullum: OK let's scale this back. We all speak with a single voice. If the narrative changes because the boss demands it we just act like we never said all that shit we said six months ago. Hey it works for the CDC.
    Robbie: do you ever wonder if maybe we should stop pretending to be libertarians?
    ENB: Hell no. Jacob? Jacob? Do you have your pants down?
    Sullum: Sorry I've got some pics of Liz Cheney here. Damn the girl is hot. But hey. I've got tickets for sweet cocktail party. We'll all get faced and talk shit about Bailey.
    ENB and Robbie (in unison): That's what I'm talkin about!

  55. "In both cases, the stories turned out to have much more credibility than originally thought."

    I originally thought they had immense credibility. So WTF does this sentence mean?

    1. That in both cases, the stories turned out to have much more credibility than these stupid fucks were willing to admit.

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