Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. “Sordida Senem” as a Sexual Identity: A Structuralist Challenge to Current Conceptualities of Intersectionality


Abstract/Summary: While there has been much focus on the issue as to whether a non-constant sexual identification (e.g., “gender fluid”) is itself an identity within a recognized constellation of identity or constitutes a series of changing identities, we find that there has been virtually no attention to age-related identity changes largely invisible to the existing intersectional paradigms and methodologies arising from conceptualities of race, class, and gender. Specifically, we focus on an as yet unexplored social identity we term sordida senem:

Here is a self-descriptive quote from subject N. of our study:


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. USA v. Flynn: Agonies Even Kafka Could Not Have Imagined


I will try my best to be very professional and civil and courteous and respectful in reporting this news about General Flynn’s case, but it will not be easy. I note that as a member of the Bar, I have a continuing ethical duty of respect to all Courts. I will also note that, especially in recent years considering the truly inexplicable decisions of some “Obama Judges” (Yes, Virginia, there are such things, and they have wreaked much damage since the President took office) it has been more and more difficult to maintain that respect for some members of the Judiciary who are clearly out of control.

I am similarly constrained in reporting the Monday news that Judge Sullivan has denied what appeared to be Sidney Powell’s 99-percent certain-to-be-successful motion to compel the sleazy, contemptible, ruthless, and diabolical government prosecutors to do their duty and to produce much material they’ve obviously hidden from General Flynn — material he clearly should have had before he pled guilty while represented by lawyers who, at the very least arguably, had serious conflict of interest problems.


Have you ever encountered terrible drivers in traffic or jerks online? Have you ever been that terrible driver or online jerk? Scott & Alison Stratten, self-proclaimed Jackass Whisperers and co-authors of the book The Jackass Whisperer, talk to Carol about how to navigate dealing with all of the jerks and jackasses that pop up in life, whether it be at work, online, in the gym, while traveling or elsewhere. They also help you assess when and where you are being a jackass yourself and coping mechanisms for the general jackassery that you encounter every day.

Scott and Alison Stratten are Jackass experts, co-authors of five best-selling business books, co-owners of UnMarketing Inc and co-hosts of not only The UnPodcast, but five children, three dogs and one cat. They also spend their time keynoting around the world.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Awaiting Mr. Krugman’s Insights…


On the day Donald Trump was elected president three years ago, Paul Krugman, winner of the Nobel Prize for economics, wrote this in his New York Times column:

It really does now look like President Donald J. Trump, and markets are plunging. When might we expect them to recover?


Kevin McLaughlin and Matt Whitlock of the NRSC sit down with Senator Martha McSally to talk about Braveheart, her dog Boomer, breakfast burritos, paragliding, and more!


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Novel Recounts de las Casas’ Life as Civil Rights Advocate


Bartolomé de las Casas was one of the earliest civil rights advocates. One of the first Spanish settlers in the New World, he became wealthy as a slave-owning plantation owner.

Then he freed his Indian slaves, abandoned his land holdings and began to fight for better treatment of the Americas’ indigenous people. He even went to Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, to secure better treatment. Charles officially appointed de la Casa “Protector of the Indians.”


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. If a Tree Falls in the Forest…


…does it make a sound?

Well, yes. Yes, it does. As much as I wish it weren’t so, there just isn’t a meaningful distinction between “sound” and “noise” that lets me get away with saying that someone has to perceive the former in order for it to have occurred.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. A Sorry Tale of Two Investigations


As we approach the year’s end, there is a titanic struggle taking place for the moral high ground of the country leading up to the 2020 presidential election. On the one side, the Democrats have succeeded on a wholly partisan vote in the House Judiciary Committee to forward two Articles of Impeachment to the full House of Representatives, where they will again be approved along strictly partisan lines.

At the same time, Inspector General Michael Horowitz published an exhaustive and mind-numbing Report that examined the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane investigation of Russian influence on the 2016 election. Among other things, that investigation wrongly initiated surveillance of Carter Page who wrongly deemed to be a Russian agent. The IG’s Report relentlessly documented serious defects in the FBI’s investigation, including in its procedures for seeking warrants from the FISA Court.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. ‘Echo Chamber’ as Author of the ‘Hive Mind’


A continuing theme on Scott Adams’ blog is to challenge oneself to come up with more innocent explanations for events that otherwise lend themselves to conspiracy thinking. For example, Scott challenges us to consider whether the 17 mistakes all made in the same direction in the FISA application process to surveil the Trump campaign can have any explanation other than conspiracy? To be clear: “Conspiracy” involves a plan and coordinated action in pursuit of that plan. This is different from bias.

Scott Adams, as I understand his commentary, is floating the idea that federal agents did act in a biased, but not conspiratorial, fashion. (At least until the Durham investigation reveals any single large conspiracy or multiple small conspiracies taking advantage of other people’s bias.) We all have our biases, but they become dangerous problems when they become the basis for state action. So even if you rule out a conspiracy, it remains important to understand the source and development of certain forms of bias that can infect state action.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. What Happened to Disclosure?


I’ve written before about my frustration with junk science reporting, and how so much of it begins with special-interest funded “studies” that land in news articles, cited as gospel. Similarly, I read this viral Medium piece with a similar amount of frustration when it comes to disclaimers and critical thinking when it comes to journalism.

All over my social media, a piece at the self-publishing site Medium about sexual predation of young girls online has been making the rounds. The writer is Sloane Ryan, who runs the Special Projects Team at Bark, a tech company committed to child safety. In the piece, about what it’s like for a 37-year old to pose as an 11-year old girl on the internet, things appear dire. Ryan writes,


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Money Talks, Bull-Schiff Walks: Viewing ‘Richard Jewell’


For the price of a movie ticket, you can stand up for truth, justice, and the American way! After Horowitz, we all knew how extensive the corruption and abuse of power was in the FBI, DOJ, and our national media. Two days later, Clint Eastwood released a movie exactly on topic, dramatically documenting earlier collusion between the same malevolent cast of characters. The response from Trump voters and supporters was telling.

The Democrats’ media wing told us that we should not support this movie. Now, with the Richard Jewell opening weekend box office counted, we know we let them win, again, just like we let them win 2018. Bank on the anti-Deplorable, anti-Trump selective hit job movie Bombshell to get plenty of support, reinforcing the left’s narrative. Trump voters can’t be bothered, and conservative media figures apparently are missing the significance, in the midst of the daily deluge of stories. So, Trump 2020 will not be Boris Johnson 2019. Change my mind this week: money talks, bull-Schiff walks.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. A Young Person We Should Honor (Not Named Thunberg)

One of the consequences of our narrative-consumed media culture is the glorification of 16-year-old truants who are manipulated and victimized (some say abused) by activist adults. Somehow, such symbolic individuals, with no real knowledge, training or experience make their way onto the cover of magazines. Meanwhile, a 21-year-old student, Reed College senior and budding scientist who has not only stayed in school but has actually done something that could prove meaningful in the global cause to reduce plastic pollution. After all, that which gets rewarded gets repeated.
It’s a real issue. The globe produces about 450 million tons of plastic every year, and about 8 million tons of it winds up in our oceans. These plastics last on average 15 years.

Morgan Vague is that Reed College student. She discovered a microbe that eats certain forms of PET, a commonly used plastic. This is amazing, but don’t expect any Nobel prizes or a person of the year award, since Morgan doesn’t appear to be getting any attention or support from so-called environmental groups. They seem more interested in the 16-year-old truant who screams at us.

Kudos to Morgan and her discovery. May the world take note.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Of Impeachment and Accountability


Never Trump Republicans and their Democratic co-conspirators have another trick up their sleeves. Knowing that they probably do not have the votes to convict and remove the President in the Senate, they are desperately searching for a way to pull it off and they think they’ve found it: A secret vote and/or a generous reading of the two-thirds rule.

Pushed by people like lobbyist Juleanna Glover (formerly of the Bush 43 Administration and Bill Kristol acolyte), Laurence Tribe and former Sen. Jeff Flake, the operating theory is that if Senators were freed from accountability to their voters there would be 30 to 35 Republicans in the Senate ready to vote “yes” on conviction.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Most Subversively Conservative Movie, Ever


In an earlier post, I explained why Bill Forsyth’s Local Hero is my all-time favorite movie. Now I’d like to share another favorite, Terry Zwigoff’s Ghost World, and explain why I think it is one of the most conservative movies ever made.

It was released in 2001, and the plot centers on recently graduated Enid (Thora Birch), and her best friend, Rebecca (played by a young and deadpan Scarlett Johansson). They are both unsure what to do now that they are done with high school, but they plan to get jobs and share an apartment. It turns out Enid has not completed her academic requirements for graduation, so she must take an art class during the summer.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Focus Group Signals Bad News for 2020 Democrats


While Washington remains fixated on impeachment, a slow-moving disaster is making its way for the 2020 Democratic field. This morning Axios reported on a small focus group that, in my anecdotal experience, is representative of a lot of American voters the mainstream remains, even years after the 2016 election, blissfully unaware of. Axios reports:

At a focus group in Saginaw, Mich., swing voters who went for President Obama and then flipped to Donald Trump are firmly in Trump’s camp now — and said they’re sick of impeachment, Axios’ Alexi McCammond reports.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Age of the Essay


Around 1100, Europe at last began to catch its breath after centuries of chaos, and once they had the luxury of curiosity they rediscovered what we call “the classics.” The effect was rather as if we were visited by beings from another solar system. These earlier civilizations were so much more sophisticated that for the next several centuries the main work of European scholars, in almost every field, was to assimilate what they knew… As European scholarship gained momentum it became less and less important; by 1350 someone who wanted to learn about science could find better teachers than Aristotle in his own era. But schools change slower than scholarship. In the 19th century the study of ancient texts was still the backbone of the curriculum – Paul Graham

In this quote from The Age of the Essay, Paul Graham explains how knowledge and writing have been held back due to teaching curriculum throughout the ages. First came the Medieval scholars, who then congregated into the universities to study the Arts, Theology, Law, and Medicine. Graham considers these universities were more like law schools, where you spent 1/3 of your time in Rhetoric, and were required to know both sides of the argument. To finish your education, you submitted a thesis on an idea and the dissertation was the argument by which you defended it. In addition, the importance of learning Greek, Latin, and classical writings was the essence of the British Public School (for the elites) until relatively recently.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Visiting Bastogne – Battle of the Bulge


Tomorrow marks the 75th anniversary of the beginning of the Battle of the Bulge.

In October of 2015 two of my brothers and I traveled through parts of Europe retracing WWI and WWII battlefields, including two nights in the Bastogne area. The following are some pictures from what we saw in that part of the trip.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Decades: A Small Rant


I just read the following phrase on a blog I frequent (which will remain unnamed to protect the blogger): “I ought to care that a decade is about to end (in 17 days!).” No, it isn’t, unless you are referring to a moving 10-year unit that came into existence in Year 11.

Now I recognize that there are calendar units called “decades” and cultural units called “decades.” They seem to be one year apart. The calendar decades take into account that there was no year “0.” There was the year “1.” Hence, a decade ends on the last day of a ten-year period that starts on the first day of a numbered year ending in “1,” e.g., 2001, 2011, 2021.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. AG William Barr: Justice Warrior


William Barr is undermining the actions and goals of the Progressives, and he knows exactly what he’s doing—and I hope he is loving every minute of it. He knew that accepting the job of Attorney General would be even more demanding than his stint as AG under President George H.W. Bush. Even a Justice Department official under Barr wondered why Barr would take the job:

The first reaction I had was, ‘Why in the world would Bill do this?’ said Timothy Flanigan, a top Justice Department official under Mr. Barr. ‘He’s doing this out of a sense of duty and patriotism. He probably sees this as, he really is the one person on the horizon who can step in with immediate credibility to the department and begin to restore the internal and external confidence.’


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Dispatches from the Naked City


My wife is serving as a juror in a civil suit that is being heard in the federal court in downtown Portland. The case will be in its sixth day come Monday morning. The following story illustrates why I provide her transportation to and from court each day rather than dropping her off at the nearest light rail platform. The following quotes are taken from an Oregonian news story.

A 37-year-old man who stood naked and screaming on some MAX tracks, then injured a bystander by grabbing her by the hair and violently yanking her to the ground, was sentenced to 26 days in jail earlier this week.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Operation Fast and Furious: The Forgotten History of the ATF’s Notorious Gunwalking Scandal


The ATF isn’t all bad. In fact, they had a policy of letting illegal gun purchases go between 2006 and 2011. It ended up getting US Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry killed on December 14, 2010, and let Mexican criminals get enough guns that they were found at over 150 crime scenes where Mexican citizens were either killed or maimed. And some of the guns were used in the November 2015 terrorist attack in Paris at the Bataclan. But other than that, it turned out just fine.

(In case you’re not picking up on it, we’re laying on the sarcasm very thick right now.)


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Why Wasn’t the Clinton Campaign Investigated?


Sometimes the best way to determine bias is to look at what didn’t happen . . .

Using the standards employed by the FBI and DOJ in 2016 regarding the Trump campaign, for which the IG report has informed us that the standards for opening an investigation are very low. Let’s look at Hillary Clinton and her campaign in that light:


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. A Very Simple Answer to Impeachment Charges


Did President Trump pressure President Zelensky of Ukraine? The Democrats say yes he did and, because Ukraine is so dependent upon America and President Trump is so powerful, Zelensky is afraid to say he was pressured. Both Trump and Zelensky many times have publicly denied any pressure.

With Trump facing impeachment and the entire world watching, why would Zelensky be afraid? He need only say that he was pressured and Trump would be gone. Both articles of impeachment are based on that simple question. They are in the principal’s office and if Zelensky said he was bullied by Trump, the bully would be kicked out of school.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. A Wandering Essay


Everybody talks about how they’d love to go on a cross-country motorcycle trip, with nothing but a motorcycle and a tent, to see North America for months at a time. I did that. Not once, but twice, in the early 1990s. I had a great time, and I learned a lot. As J.R.R. Tolkien pointed out, all who wander are not lost. I knew what I was doing (or, at least, I thought I did at the time) and I had wonderful experiences that I wouldn’t trade for anything. I also wasted a lot of time and effort, but I’ve forgotten about most of that. I remember the wonderful experiences. Life is funny like that.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Are You Clamoring for an Electric Car?


(With my apologies to Gary McVey, prepare for one of my incendiary posts.)

Is a Tesla or a Chevy Bolt, or a Nissan Leaf on your Christmas list this year? Can you hardly wait to ditch that gas-guzzler in the driveway and replace it with a vehicle that you can “fill up” from an installation in your garage, at a lot less than a tank of Regular?