Wednesday, August 2, 2017


The message that universal liberty needs no tribal strongman has never been more appealing, or more necessary--Tucker
This is a crucial notion, that freedom is not a function of power but of formalized restraint. Undermining that--e.g. the constitution--is fatal to the system that allows for liberty.

Compared with roughly 20 years ago, people are twice as likely to report that they are always exhausted. Close to 50% of people say they are often or always exhausted due to work. This is a shockingly high statistic — and it’s a 32% increase from two decades ago. What’s more, there is a significant correlation between feeling lonely and work exhaustion: The more people are exhausted, the lonelier they feel. This loneliness is not a result of social isolation, as you might think, but rather is due to the emotional exhaustion of workplace burnout.

Service animals are everywhere but there is not much evidence out there that they help. Earlier this year the Journal of Applied Developmental Science, in an introduction to a series of articles on “animal-assisted intervention,” said research into its efficacy “remains in its infancy.” A recent literature review by Molly Crossman, a Yale University doctoral candidate,  cited a “murky body of evidence” that sometimes has shown positive short-term effects, often found no effect and occasionally identified higher rates of distress. Overall, Crossman wrote, animals seem to be helpful in a “small-to-medium” way, but it’s unclear whether the critters deserve the credit or something else is at play.

In a front-page article, the Wall Street Journal reports health insurers nationwide have been sending letters to hundreds of thousands of Americans warning that their plans purchased on the Affordable Care Act marketplaces will be canceled at the end of the year. The Journal adds that lawmakers appear to be worried the announcements will affect their constituents and could prompt protests during their visits to their districts this week.
The poor dears.

One of the Generals at Gallipoli was said to have written thousands of words a day in his diary but to have spent little time to improve the matters that threatened his troops. Here is a line about Susan Sontag that sounds similar: Her journals were not just a record of her life; they were an alternative to it.
Last April, when Jason Chaffetz announced he would resign his House seat, The Palmer Report published an anonymously sourced "bombshell" claiming the FBI had discovered the Utah congressman was being blackmailed by the Kremlin. The story was characteristic of the site’s well-worn shtick. But that didn’t stop Ned Price, a former special assistant to President Obama, from credulously passing it along on Twitter.  
“Interesting, if single-sourced, article from a few days ago,” he wrote.
Eric Schultz, a senior adviser to Obama, then chimed in, “Too bad nobody flagged this earlier.”
When journalists began pressing the duo on why they were sharing a story from a website with such a spotty track record of accuracy, Price’s response was telling. “Every once in a blue moon, the tin hat can fit.”
--from an article on nonsense from the Left in The Atlantic

Migration is INEVITABLE. Migration is NECESSARY. Migration is DESIRABLE. These three sentences flash Orwellianly at the end of a new video released by the International Organization for Migration (IOM), a United Nations group dedicated to “promoting humane and orderly migration for the benefit of all.”

Who is...Zuckerberg?

In its fitful development after 1776 such a “liberalism,” from a liberalitas long understood by the slave-holding ancients as “the leading characteristic of a non-slavish person,” came to mean the theory of a society consisting entirely of free people. No slaves at all. No pushing around. Humane. Sweet talking. Persuasive. Rhetorical. Voluntary. Minimally violent. Tolerant. No racism. No imperialism. No unnecessary taxes. No dominance of women by men. No messing with other people’s stuff. It recommended a maximum liberty to pursue your own project, if your project does not employ physical violence to interfere with other people’s projects.--from McCloskey, who clearly feels she needs to break her thinking into smaller morsels but you get the point.

An angry Italy summoned Austria's ambassador after the government in Vienna announced it was ready to re-introduce border controls and deploy troops and armored vehicles along the border to block any migrant influx out of Italy.

In 1996, Dolly the sheep–the first mammal to have been successfully cloned from an adult cell–was born at the Roslin Institute in Scotland. In January 2002 she was found to have arthritis in her hind legs, a diagnosis that raised questions about genetic abnormalities that may have been caused in the cloning process. After suffering from a progressive lung disease, Dolly was put down on February 14, 2003, at the age of six. Her early death raised more questions about the safety of cloning, both animal and human.

The anti-growth movement is a remnant of the anti-capitalist left which failed to fulfill the original promise of Marxist growth and, rather than concede defeat, rubbishes the game by portraying growth as something that is not worth striving for.--Christopher Snowden

Samsung may be working on a smart speaker of its own. The company is developing a smart speaker powered by its Bixby voice assistant, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The Declaration stipulates that those who govern the people are supposed “to secure” their preexisting rights, not impose the will of a majority of the people on the minority.--Barnett

This subservience of the majority will to pre-existing rights that can not be altered is the basis for the U.S.' founding. Anyone thinking that the majority always rules would see Jefferson, Madison, Monroe et al as opponents to democracy rather than the architects of democracy's basic foundation, a structure quite separate from democracy itself. This struggle is now on a higher plane; kings are not trying to impose their God-given power upon us. But there are certainly new and proud volunteers for their place in line. 

Nasdaq has issued a market-wide trading halt amid what appears to be a "glitch" that sent a number of the largest Nasdaq-listed stocks to crash or spike to exactly $123.47 per share. This move crashed the value of companies including Amazon and Apple, sparked chaos in Microsoft, while sending Zynga rocketing up more than 3000%.

For most of history, probably more than 90 percent of the world population lived in extreme poverty That poverty has dropped to fewer than 10 percent today. But any success is rarely enough for the righteous.

 Golden oldie:
Pale Gas is the mnemonic for the seven deadly sins (vices): pride, avarice, lust, envy, greed, anger and sloth. These were originally listed...

“A church doesn’t just come together. It has a pastor who cares for the well-being of their congregation, makes sure they have food and shelter. A little league team has a coach who motivates the kids and helps them hit better. Leaders set the culture, inspire us, give us a safety net, and look out for us.” Zuckerberg said that! We need a national pastor or coach! God help us.

Volvo will begin producing electric motors on all its cars from 2019, becoming the first traditional automaker to forgo the combustion engine altogether.

Worldwide cases of leprosy have dropped 97 percent from 5 million since 1985, and it is now easily treatable. A global plan set 2020 as a target for no more children to become deformed by leprosy.

Somin on MacLean: On one issue, however, she is largely correct: it is indeed true that libertarians want to impose tight limits on the power of democratic majorities. Calling this agenda a “stealth plan” is, of course, ridiculous. It is much like saying that pro-lifers have a “stealth plan” to restrict abortion, or that Bernie Sanders has a secret agenda to expand government control over the economy. Skepticism about the power of democratic majorities has been a central – and completely open – feature of classical liberal and libertarian thought for centuries. Most of the Founding Fathers, John Stuart Mill, Alexis de Tocqueville, and many others held such views. It was Thomas Jefferson, writing in protest of the Alien and Sedition Acts, not James Buchanan and the Koch brothers (the central villains of MacLean’s story), who wrote that “[i]n questions of power,… let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.”

The number of Japanese living in the country on January 1st was just over 125.58 million, down 308 thousand from the previous year - the biggest drop since record-keeping began in 1968 - and marked the 8th straight year in which Japan's population has declined.

AAAAaaaaaannnnnddddd....a graph showing death rates from drug overdoses, emphasizing Portugal vs. U.S. (all drugs were decriminalized in Portugal in 2001)


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