Celebrating the Flag and the Army on June 14th

 

June 14th is officially designated both Flag Day and the Army Birthday in the United States. These two are intertwined, as the need for a flag, and the need of an army, arose from our bid for independence. The Army traces its birthday to an act of the Continental Congress in 1775, more than a year before the Declaration of Independence. The flag’s birthday is traced to another act of the Continental Congress, one year after the Declaration of Independence. The Army has marched under the flag, in its many configurations, and sometimes come home draped in the flag.

Happy 243rd Birthday, Army!

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The Strength of Men and Women

 

A few weeks ago, @joepas posted about his friend who took great offense at the notion that men were stronger than women. I found this absolutely astounding, because it seems that abundant evidence of this fact is everywhere and easily experienced. But apparently, somehow, this basic truth has now been turned into an opinion in some quarters. I came across this today: Transgender track athlete wins CT state championship, debate ensues.

Apparently, two transgender men who identify as women just came home with a bunch of blue ribbons after competing in girls’ track and field. This predictable outcome is not the topic of this post, however. And, in truth, what more needs to be said?

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Quote of the Day: Whittaker Chambers on Evil

 

“I did not know what had happened to me. I denied the very existence of a soul. But I said: ‘This is evil, absolute evil. Of this evil I am a part.'” — Whittaker Chambers

To paraphrase Jordan Peterson, it amazes me that modern intellectuals don’t believe in evil anymore. The 20th century made evil so bloody obvious. Dennis Prager also has a nice line about evil: “Those who don’t fight the greatest evils will fight lesser evils or make-believe evils.”

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Historic Snooker

 

The headline writers adore the word “historic.” It was ubiquitous in reporting on the April meeting between Kim Jung Un and Moon Jae-in. Kim shook Moon’s hand and then guided him over the military demarcation line to step onto North Korean territory. This prompted swoons. What rot. If that was a bona fide gesture of peaceful intent, time will tell. In the meantime, let’s assume it was a stunt.

So too with the summit between Kim Jung Un and Donald Trump, though in this case the media hype couldn’t compete with Mr. Trump’s own. He has basked in talk of a Nobel Peace Prize and predicted that he and the butcher of Pyongyang were “going to have a great discussion and a terrific relationship.” Obviously panting for a meeting, Trump was reportedly livid with National Security Advisor John Bolton, whose May comments about a “Libya solution” to the nuclear weapons problem apparently spooked Kim into withdrawing from the summit. Trump insisted that it was he who canceled, just as he did with the Philadelphia Eagles’ White House visit.

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Dressing for Success: Wrong?

 

The post on tattoos got me thinking. What is the difference between the ways we choose to dress, the ways in which we personally groom, and even tattoos? After all, see how women dress differently before and after Third-Wave Feminism.

It seems to me quite appropriate that people, who are in our society free to choose how they present themselves, are inviting judgment based on those choices. If one dresses Goth, one chooses to fit in with Goths. Everything from long hair to the color of our fingernails to whether or not we shower … they are all ways in which we signal to ourselves, and others, how we view them.

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DOJ Inspector General Report on FBI Investigation of Hillary Clinton

 

The Department of Justice Inspector General’s report on the FBI’s investigation of Hillary Clinton has been released. You can read the (568 page!) document yourself here. Share any revelations you find in it here in the comments.

DOJ’s Inspector General Report: A Review of Various Actions by the Federal Bureau of Investifation and Department of Justice in Advance of the 2016 Election

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ACF #36: Stagecoach

 

Prof. John Marini and I continue our series on John Ford and the Western. And today we come recommended by Powerline! Glad to see the gentlemen there are friends of the show and we’re looking forward to having them on the podcast! Today, we deal with the movie that made John Wayne a star and made the Western an art form. Ford seems to have thought it both possible and necessary to establish a national form of poetry–and, for two generations, the Western really was that. Ford’s idea was to tell the story of America’s past in a heroic way–his art was essentially anti-Progressive. Things and people past were not, in his eyes, worse, essentially, than things and people present or future. Instead, going back to the origins of civilization, the essential character of man and city emerge in his movies, and in a way that defends and criticizes civilization at the same time.

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Summit Agreement

 

View original here.

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Swamp Creatures Assemble!

 

In Gotham, the villainous Master Disrupter Donald Trump descended the escalator from the dark and frightening past. Long thought to be forever vanquished on the day the oceans’ rise began to slow, the McDonalds-fueled old white male of too-much girth and too-long ties sent the Washington Establishment scrambling for a plan to vanquish their great nemesis.

Pressing the button beneath desk in the Oval Office, President Obama illuminated the night sky with the Deep State Signal depicting a haloed James Comey clenching a FISA warrant in his raised fist and the words “Quae sunt circa quam est hic” (“The Way Things Are Done Around Here”).

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The Fiercely Independent Irish and Their Dependence on the EU

 

Our vacation in Ireland has been great so far. This afternoon, we did a hiking tour of a Knights Templar church and its cemetery, which was built in 1210 near Cork. Our tour guide was great. His explanation was that the Vatican did not want Ireland to descend into Protestantism the way the English had, so they sent the Knights Templar up to introduce Catholicism to the pagans in Ireland.

Our tour guide was enthusiastic, informative, and was a walking encyclopedia of Irish history. He had a strong Irish accent and a stronger hatred of the English, which is not entirely unusual in these parts. He said that it would be impossible for the Irish to ever cooperate with the English, because of the long history of conflict between them. I pointed out that the US became a country only after it defeated England in a brutal war, and that England is now our closest ally. That led him into a discussion of his views on the modern political scene, including Brexit. I found his perspective fascinating.

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California Might Split Into 3 States. The US Should Only Keep One of Them.

 

This November, California voters will decide if they want their once Golden State split into three. Wracked by high debt, ridiculous taxes, and severe economic disparity, this plan is intended to give residents more control of their state government.

The ballot measure was drafted by Tim Draper, a Silicon Valley VC gazillionaire responsible for two past efforts to divide Cali six ways. His modified plan for an unholy trinity is considered an improvement since each new state would be more economically sustainable.

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‘First Man’: Neil Armstrong Movie Joins ‘The Right Stuff’ and ‘Apollo 13’

 

I just found out about First Man, the Neil Armstrong movie coming out October 12. Finally! Twenty-three years after Apollo 13, there’s a third non-fiction astronaut drama coming to the big screen.

Only three? Yep. Outside of any indie films I haven’t heard of, the only non-fiction dramas about the American manned space program have been The Right Stuff (1983)Apollo 13 (1995), and now First Man (2018). Tom Hanks and Ron Howard teamed up again after Apollo 13 to make an excellent mini-series, From the Earth to the Moon (1998), but the format of a mini-series makes for a different kind of story-telling than a two-hour movie, so I’m considering it separately.

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Why the Delay in Kim’s Denuclearization, Big D?

 

“Why didn’t Kim Jong Un allow you to sniff his night soil, Mr. President?” CNN’s Jim Accoster screamed accusingly, piercing the solemnity of the Singapore Summit’s silent opening prayer.

Big D continued praying in silence as Kim’s interpreter explained the question to the Chairman.

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Trump’s G7 Free Trade Zone Is a Breathtakingly Ambitious Idea. But Has It Been Thought Through?

 

President Trump’s idea to turn the G7 into a free trade zone strikes one as a bit impulsive and underthought. After all, the Trump trade record this year seems to suggest a different direction, from solar panel and washing machine tariffs back in January to the steel and aluminum tariffs in March to China tariffs perhaps coming up.

Of course, none of that makes a G7 free trade zone necessarily a bad idea. Not at all. In theory, at least, it’s a remarkable one, breathtaking in its ambition. As Financial Times trade reporter Shawn Donnan writes:

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In Polk County, We Take Care of Our Own

 

While some school districts are struggling with the politics of protecting their kids from shooters in schools, Florida has taken action. Here in Polk County, the Sheriff’s Department and other law enforcement agencies will be hiring citizens to be part of the Guardians Program. When they put the call out, 400 people applied for the 90 positions.

The program was enacted in response to the Parkland school shooting. Applicants will be put through a rigorous screening process, including psychological testing. These employees will be hired in addition to the school resource officers in place. Here is a partial job description:

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And Time Keeps Rolling Along…

 

I’m currently on vacation in Ireland with my family. My oldest daughter has six weeks off before she has to go back to college to start basketball practice for the coming season. My middle daughter moves away to college this fall. My youngest will be a junior in high school and travels a lot with sports, so she’s not around as much as I would like. For years, my girls were rarely apart, now they’re rarely together, and that makes me so sad. Of course, the whole point of raising kids is to create independent, self-sufficient adults, so I guess this is exactly what we’ve been trying to accomplish for the past 20 years. So, good for us. But this hurts. Especially because when I think of my girls, this is what I see:

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Harvard Stands Up for the “R” Word

 

As many are aware, Harvard is being sued for discriminating against Asians, who apparently have to have an SAT score 140 points higher than other minorities to gain acceptance. All of this is very confusing, but Dr. Faust, President of Harvard, makes a Faustian bargain to explain the veritas:

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Group Writing: Living in the Shadows

 

He’d had a long, productive life. On reflection, he said he had no complaints. He took care of himself, ate right, and took regular exercise. He’d raised an independent brood, all who eventually went on to make their own way in the world. He tried to talk them into staying close by, but they were determined to forge their own paths. And now he’d outlived them all.

Unfortunately, life changed in these parts. He had always felt free and independent, keeping his own schedule and company. He explored whenever he felt like it, relaxed when he could and pretty much lived a life of leisure. He’d always been a night owl; the silence and safety of darkness never stopped having its appeal.

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Hairstoric Summit

 

For the original artwork, click the link.

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When Will This Fad End?

 

This topic has been bouncing around my head for a while, but I’ve never gotten around to writing it. Someone on Ricochet will mention something, Jay Nordlinger months ago on a podcast complained about tattoos or a user whose name I forget recently said he was up for a good tattoo rant. Other times I see someone and think why?

I noticed markings on Dana Loesch’s arm in a Parkland CNN screenshot or a cross on a pastor’s back at a church swim party. Tattoos seem to be everywhere and there is no demographic that is exempt. This will come across as a get-off-my-lawn rant, but here we go.

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Quote of the Day: Responsibility

 

“Responsibility is a unique concept… You may share it with others, but your portion is not diminished. You may delegate it, but it is still with you… If responsibility is rightfully yours, no evasion, or ignorance or passing the blame can shift the burden to someone else. Unless you can point your finger at the man who is responsible when something goes wrong, then you have never had anyone really responsible.” ― Hyman G. Rickover

Rickover was always a controversial figure. Yet this quote gets to the heart of much what is wrong in today’s society. No one is held responsible, and the higher your position the more responsibility is avoided. The only ones held responsible are low-level suckers too low on the totem pole to avoid holding the bag of responsibility. Worse still? A society where position and prestige shields one from the responsibility which goes with that position is fundamentally corrupt.

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Korea, Whuz Up?

 
Dennis Rodman, great NBA Legend and Kim Jong Un, potential DPRK Legend

Trump and Kim had a deal negotiated long before Singapore. Despite a few speed bumps, that deal got done.

This is what happened: The US and Kim agreed to “Talk.” That is all. Yes, it is true the US agreed to cancel military exercises on the Korean Peninsula (this drains the North’s treasury when they feel compelled to place their military on high alert), and the North agreed to no more missile or nuclear weapons tests — not written, but implied. Other things (MIA’s/POW data, etc.) were also agreed to, but we will not know about these for months or years. As for military exercises, the South wanted to give these up years ago to get peace.

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Okay … This Is Just Funny

 

Enjoy.

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Beauty and Success Are Bourgeois Values and Must Be Crushed

 

Exhibit 1. The Miss America pageant is eliminating beauty as a standard for deciding who will win its contests. In other words, the entire competition comes down to who gives the best “I will work for world peace and uphold the values of the Miss America pageant” speech.

The competition would focus more on the contestants’ talents, intelligence and ideas. “We are not going to judge you on your outward appearance,” [Chairwoman Gretchen] Carlson, who was Miss America in 1989, said on ABC’s “Good Morning America” on Tuesday. “We are moving it forward and evolving it in this cultural revolution.”

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