Generally speaking, it is widely believed that social media is free to censor people as they see fit. We believe there might be some legal arguments that can be made against that, but that is a common belief. ‘They’re just private companies making their own decisions’ is the argument offered by people defending this censorship. For instance, here’s uber-weenie David French making that argument:
This is just shamelessly wrong. A private political campaign is not the government. A political party is not the government. A private company is not the government. This isn’t a “systematic violation of the First Amendment.” The First Amendment isn’t implicated at all. https://t.co/V0iDkkFe8s
We have suspected for years that this was French just running interference, and that, in fact, he likes Internet censorship. Recently, he confirmed our suspicions:
Antisemitism speech is free speech, however vile it can be. So French is upset that Twitter/X is allowing for free speech. We would rather have people feel free to say vile things then have someone decide what kind of speech is allowed.
But the other retort to the French view is presented in Missouri v. Biden, because the argument in that case is that the social media companies were not simply acting on their own. Private action can become government action, under the right circumstances—the most obvious being when the government coerces the private action. The lower court found that various social media companies—like Twitter/X, Meta/Facebook and Google/YouTube were—were not censoring based on their own desires, but because of illegal government pressure. As a result, the District Court issued a preliminary injunction, prohibiting a broad range of communication by the government, and it applied nationwide. If you have been on social media since then, this order protected your right to free speech.
The Biden administration appealed and tonight they largely lost. The Fifth Circuit largely upheld that order, explaining that this was the standard for when private action became state action.
The government cannot abridge free speech. U.S. Const. amend. I. A private party, on the other hand, bears no such burden—it is ‘not ordinarily constrained by the First Amendment.’ Manhattan Cmty. Access Corp. v. Halleck, 139 S. Ct. 1921, 1930 (2019). That changes, though, when a private party is coerced or significantly encouraged by the government to such a degree that its ‘choice’—which if made by the government would be unconstitutional, Norwood v. Harrison, 413 U.S. 455, 465 (1973)—’must in law be deemed to be that of the State.’ Blum v. Yaretsky, 457 U.S. 991, 1004 (1982); Barnes v. Lehman, 861 F.2d 1383, 1385–36 (5th Cir. 1988). This is known as the close nexus test.
They also found that the Plaintiffs, including many doctors, state officials and even the Gateway Pundit had met the requirement that there be a sufficient threat of irreparable harm:
We agree that the Plaintiffs have shown that they are likely to suffer an irreparable injury. Deprivation of First Amendment rights, even for a short period, is sufficient to establish irreparable injury.
So, they largely upheld the lower court’s order. They did tighten up the list of officials being enjoined and they clarified the language so it clearly prevented both coercion and ‘significant encouragement’ as the law prohibits. This means that the Biden administration can ask nicely for censorship but can’t engage in the kind of pressure campaigns it has in the past…..
LEGAL INSURRECTION has this perfectly times story to throw in the face of the world Western “do-gooders.”
A new study from Europe suggests those paper straws may contain “forever chemicals” that are harmful to both humans and the environment and were observed more often than in a sample of plastic straws.
Belgian researchers tested 39 straw brands from restaurants and retailers for synthetic chemicals known as poly and perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). The study found that the majority of straws contained those chemicals, but they were most common in those made from paper and bamboo.
The chemicals are referred to as “forever chemicals” as they can remain for thousands of years in the environment. The chemicals have been associated with health issues including thyroid disease, increased cholesterol, liver damage and kidney and testicular cancer and can harm the environment as well.
Of the brands tested, 90% of the paper straws contained PFAS, compared to 80% of bamboo straws, 75% of plastic straws and 40% of glass straws. None of the steel straws contained the chemicals.
I had a perfectly lovely “Lava Flow” cocktail ruined by a paper straw that disintegrated on me during my last vacation. I, for one, will encourage a return to sanity and plastic straws.
Next, a new study suggests substituting single-use plastic cups with their paper counterparts is not the environmentally friendly solution that was once believed.
Findings from the University of Gothenburg published in Environmental Pollution reveal that paper cups, once discarded in the environment, can cause harm due to toxic chemicals. In their study, researchers examined the impact of disposable cups crafted from various materials on butterfly mosquito larvae, discovering that paper and plastic cups exhibited comparable levels of toxic damage.
…The researchers explained that paper used in food packaging lacks resistance to fats and water, requiring the application of a surface coating to enhance its performance. This coating, typically made of plastic material, safeguards the paper from contact with substances like coffee.
In contemporary packaging, this plastic film is frequently composed of a bioplastic known as polylactide (PLA). Unlike conventional plastics derived from fossil fuels, bioplastics like PLA are sourced from renewable materials, such as corn, cassava, or sugarcane. While PLA is often considered biodegradable, indicating its ability to break down more rapidly than traditional oil-based plastics under specific conditions, recent research suggests that it can still possess toxic properties.
“Bioplastics do not break down effectively when they end up in the environment, in water. There may be a risk that the plastic remains in nature, and resulting microplastics can be ingested by animals and humans, just as other plastics do. Bioplastics contain at least as many chemicals as conventional plastic,” said lead researcher Bethanie Carney Almroth, professor of Environmental Science at the Department of Biology and Environmental Science at the University of Gothenburg.
Personally, I find plastics greatly contribute to my quality of life. I am very skeptical of the dangers associated with “microplastics,” especially when such analysis fails to consider the benefits of plastic…..
…Scientists and environmental advocates expressed alarm about this tsunami of waste from the jump. They foresaw the dire ecological ramifications of our mask waste — especially once those masks made their inevitable way into the earth’s waterways. Elastic loops pose entanglement hazards for turtles, birds, and other animals. Fish could eat the plastic-fiber ribbons that unfurl from a discarded mask’s body. Then, there is the untold menace to human health that would likely present, at the microscopic level, once masks began to disintegrate.
Now, two years into the pandemic, governments have had ample time to grapple with this serious conundrum: How do we keep people safe from a highly communicable pathogen without unleashing an environmental catastrophe? But instead of heeding the chorus of expert warnings and pouring money into biodegradable and reusable alternatives, world leaders have ignored the problem. And once the immediate public-health emergency superseded ecological concerns — the heads of Big Plastic made sure it stayed that way.
“The plastics industry saw COVID as an opportunity,” John Hocevar, the oceans campaign director at Greenpeace USA, told me from his office in Washington, D.C. “They worked hard to convince policymakers and the general public that reusables were dirty and dangerous, and that single-use plastic is necessary to keep us safe.”
Stateside, Big Plastic’s PR campaign may have hit its apex in July 2020, when the president and CEO of the Plastics Industry Association testified before Congress to argue that single-use plastic was a pandemic health necessity, stating that “plastic saves lives.”
The fear-mongering worked. The global consumption of single-use plastics has increased by up to 300% since the pandemic began, according to a 2021 Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development report. The plastic industry’s canny COVID strategy also provided a plausible cover for government inertia in funding sustainable solutions to disposable masks.
The need to address the growing pile of discarded masks has only grown over the course of the pandemic. A December 2021 study reported a 9,000% rise in mask litter in the UK during the first seven months of the pandemic. And as more transmissible variants like Delta and Omicron led public-health officials to promote the use of heavy-duty disposable masks and respirators like KN95s and nonsurgical N95s — instead of the less-protective reusable cloth models that were encouraged earlier in the outbreak — it is clear that companies will be cranking out disposable masks for months to come.
As we enter our third year of COVID-19, research not only supports environmentalists’ early fears surrounding mask pollution in waterways but has introduced new concerns. Sarper Sarp, a professor of chemical engineering at Swansea University in Wales, led a contamination study that tested nine readily available single-use masks. After submerging the masks in water and letting them sit, Sarp and his team discovered both micro- and nanoplastic particles released from every single one. The leachate from those masks — that is, the particles they emitted into fluid — amounted to a sort of toxic tea.
The masks were also found to expel nanoparticles of silicon and heavy metals like lead, cadmium, copper, and even arsenic. Sarp says that he was astonished by what he and the team found after a relatively brief period of submersion, and by the quantity of particles released by each mask. The masks released hundreds, and sometimes thousands, of toxic particles — particles that can potentially disrupt entire marine food chains and contaminate drinking water.
The presence of silicon nanoparticles was of particular concern. Silicon is a common material in healthcare products, easy to sterilize and maintain. “But when it comes to nano size,” said Sarp, “it’s a whole different story.”
Microplastic particles are shed by all sorts of single-use plastics, from water bottles to grocery bags. While hardly ideal for marine ecosystems, Sarp explains that these particles can be filtered to a significant extent by our digestive systems and lungs. But nanoparticles — of plastic, silicon, or other materials — are so minute in size that they can breach cell walls and damage DNA, affecting both human and nonhuman life-forms at the cellular level. Recent research on silicon nanoparticles, in particular, has shown that if a particle is very small in nano scale, it can act almost as a tiny, carcinogenic bomb. Multiply that by a minimum of several hundred per mask, at a rate of 50,000 masks disposed per second, and the scope of the dilemma grows vivid.
“I think this is a bit of an urgent situation, as both a scientist and as an environmental expert,” Sarp said….
On my Facebook I linked a story from LIFE SITE quoting a DAILY MAIL article about harmful chemicals from masks worn to “combat” covid.
Here is the gist of my Facebook post:
New study finds extended use of ‘best’ COVID masks may cause cancer, liver damage
South Korean researchers found that KFAD and KF94 disposable masks, South Korea’s equivalent of N95 masks made out of the same material, release eight times the EPA’s recommended safety limit of toxic volatile organic compounds.
As some institutions in the United States begin to reimpose COVID-19 mask mandates, a new study suggests that the types of masks billed as most effective may actually contain dangerous and potentially even cancer-inducing chemicals.
The Daily Mailreports that according to a study by researchers from South Korea’s Jeonbuk National University, published in the journal Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety and on the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH’s) website, KFAD and KF94 disposable masks release eight times the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) recommended safety limit of toxic volatile organic compounds (TVOCs).
It was immediately “fact-checked“, and this is the reason for this post.
The study also wasn’t published by the NIH, but by a scientific journal unaffiliated with the NIH.
In the wake of this news, a Daily Mail article published on 27 August 2023 claimed that a “mask study published by NIH suggests N95 Covid masks may expose wearers to dangerous level of toxic compounds linked to seizures and cancer”.
Finally, the study was published in the journal of Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety, not by the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), as the Mail claimed. The journal is part of the MEDLINE database, which is maintained by the U.S. Library of Medicine. That the study is made available on the NIH website doesn’t mean the NIH published it, just as a book being part of a lending library’s collection doesn’t mean it’s published by the library.
Firstly, all the articles I have seen clearly state the NIH wasn’t the author of the study, but merely shared it. Here is this portion of the “fact-check”
But a study quietly re-shared by the National Institutes of Health in spring
The study was published in the journal Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety and on the NIH’s website.
The NIH said: ‘Inclusion in an NLM database does not imply endorsement of, or agreement with, the contents by NLM or the National Institutes of Health.’
N o w h e r ein the Daily Mail article do they say the NIH was the origin of the study, nor did they even hint at it. Everything the “fact check” said the Daily Mail article said. On to the next part. No matter the link you post on Facebook, you get the same dumb “check”:
But a study quietly re-shared by the National Institutes of Health in spring [….] The study was published in the journal Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety and on the NIH’s website, but the NIH pointed out that didn’t mean they accepted its conclusions: The NIH said: “Inclusion in an NLM database does not imply endorsement of, or agreement with, the contents by NLM or the National Institutes of Health.” — RED STATE
…published in the journal Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety and on the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH’s) website [….] The NIH website contains a disclaimer that it does not necessarily endorse studies it publishes… —LIFE SITE
So the “fact-check” misses the truth embedded in all these articles.
Another point they note is this regarding the study the “check” says:
While KF94 and N95 masks are considered to be functionally comparable, it’s important to note that the study’s results suggest that VOC levels differ depending on the material used to make the mask. Based on the study’s Table 5, the KF94 masks tested in the study were composed primarily of polypropylene and polyurethane nylon. Most N95 masks use polypropylene, according to Meedan’s Health Desk. The study didn’t test any N95 mask, so it doesn’t offer data about N95 masks that allows us to objectively compare VOC levels between N95 and KF94 masks.
What is laughable is that the “check” acts like this is a big difference. That is between the materials used in KF94 (polypropylene and polyurethane nylon) and the N95 (polypropylene). NEW YORK MAGAZINEbelow that both “are made of the same synthetic material and [also] filter out and capture 95 percent of particles in the air”. And REUTERSalso likewise says, “[t]hese masks and their international counterparts known as KN95s and KF94s are often made of multiple layers of polypropylene, a synthetic fiber.”
They are essentially the same exact mask, one has an extra layer, almost like a second mask, across the front. It is disingenuous for this “fact check” to say “we don’t know because this exact mask “model number” wasn’t tested.
At any rate, the conclusion of study everyone is talking about has this… I will emphasize the part that caught my eye:
As the number of problems that require mask wearing (including air pollution and COVID-19) grows, masks are increasingly important. Now that masks are all but required, the harmful chemicals that can be released from them must be evaluated. In this study, VOCs generated from various types of masks, including commonly used KF94 disposable masks, were assessed. The types and concentrations of VOCs that humans are likely to be exposed to from these masks under various conditions (i.e., emission time, temperature, and mask types) were calculated and compared. This study demonstrated that disposable masks (KF94) released higher concentrations of TVOCs in comparison to cotton masks, with values of 3730 ± 1331 µg m–3 for KF94 and 268 ± 51.6 µg m–3 for cotton masks. The concentrations of TVOCs in KF94 masks are high enough to pose a concern based on indoor air quality guidelines established by the German Federal Environment Agency. However, when KF94 masks were opened and left undisturbed for 30 min at room temperature, TVOC concentrations significantly decreased to 724 ± 5.86 µg m–3 (a 78.2 ± 9.45% reduction from levels measured immediately upon opening). It is clear that particular attention must be paid to the VOCs associated with the use of KF94 masks their effects on human health. Based on our findings, we suggest that prior to wearing a KF94 mask, each product should be opened and not worn for at least 30 min, thereby reducing TVOC concentrations to levels that will not impair human health.
FLASHBACK | Old Posts
August 2nd, 2018
In light of the moonbat jihad against drinking straws (see here, here, and here) having reached the point that providing customers with straws is now punishable with jail time in Santa Barbara, see if you can guess whether this is a legitimate story or fake news from the Babylon Bee…. (MOONBATTERY)
MOONBATTERY has more on the origin of this “500-million” number:
In July, Seattle imposed America’s first ban on plastic straws. Vancouver, British Columbia, passed a similar ban a few months earlier. There are active attempts to prohibit straws in New York City, Washington, D.C., Portland, Oregon, and San Francisco. A-list celebrities from Calvin Harris to Tom Brady have lectured us on giving up straws. Both National Geographic and The Atlantic have run long profiles on the history and environmental effects of the straw. Viceis now treating their consumption as a dirty, hedonistic excess.
Young Milo came up with the outlandishly improbable 500 million straws per day stat himself. Adult moonbats ran with it…..
August 26, 2018
I combine two different segments of John and Ken discussing California’s #FakeNews regarding straws and the environment. (The first segment is from Thursday’s show, the second is from Wednesday’s show [starts at the 7:15 mark]) Some funny and frustrating stuff.
Just two commentaries I enjoyed and wanted to share.
Nauseating Woke Lectures Are Masquerading As Ads: Gutfeld
Gutfeld mentions Gillette (see my past posts on that topic HERE and HERE)… to wit I use Jeremy’s Razors now. I have tried both the 6-blade and the 5-blade versions. I suggest the 6-blade for face people (it is a unique design that stays sharp)… I like the 5-blade because I shave my head as well as my face (less space between the blades for the bumpy head.
“So how did this happen? Well, all these nauseating lectures are now masquerading as ads, are the colleges churning out too many useless women’s study grads, so they end up in companies demanding tampons in men’s rooms and jockstraps in the women’s? Hmm. They view buyers as insects: stupid, gross, easily manipulated, someone to be punished, not celebrated.”
TRANS Sports Illustrated Model? Kim Petras Cover | Pseudo-Intellectual with Lauren Chen | 5/17/23 (Video: BLAZETV)
Woke Sports Illustrated Gets SLAMMED For Putting Transgender Model On Cover Of Swimsuit Edition (Video: SPORTS WARS)
Sports Illustrated DESTROYED For Using Trans Woman On Cover Of Swimsuit Edition! (Video: THE QUARTERING)
Watters: Elon Musk Speaks For All Of Us
“Now, everybody won’t be able to make enough money to speak freely. Okay, I accept that. So, we need to take the mob out, get our voices back and Elon speaks for all of us”
This week the left is trying to cancel Elon Musk for anti-semitism. In a tweet, Musk compared George Soros to supervillain Magneto. Apparently, this isn’t allowed because Soros is a Holocaust survivor.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, joins ‘The Evening Edit’ to discuss the ‘hard deadline’ he has given the IRS to turn over documents and communications pertaining to ‘Twitter Files’ journalist Matt Taibbi.
‘The Five’ co-hosts react to Twitter Files journalist Matt Taibbi’s ‘unannounced’ timed run-in with the IRS just before his testimony before Congress.
The following photographs illustrate the point. Here is a pre-“ban” AR-15. On the end of its barrel is a two-inch-long attachment that reduces smoke and flash, and underneath its A-frame front sight is another attachment called a bayonet lug.
Now here is what the 730,000 AR-15s made during the ban looked like.
BREITBART notes the WaPo article Watters mentions above:
….Setting aside the question of what an “assault weapon” is, Biden’s claim has been fact-checked by the Washington Post — hardly a conservative outlet — and found to be lacking.
The Post fact-checked the statement, “When we passed the assault weapons ban, mass shootings went down. When the law expired, mass shootings tripled.” The Post reported:
Biden claimed that mass shooting deaths tripled after the law expired. He appears to be relying on a study of mass shooting data from 1981 to 2017, published in 2019 in the Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery by a team led by Charles DiMaggio, a professor of surgery at New York University’s Langone Medical Center. That group found that an assault weapons ban would have prevented 314 out of 448, or 70 percent, of the mass shooting deaths during the years when the ban was not in effect. But the data used in that study has come under attack by some analysts.
The new mass-shooting database shows that there were 31 mass shootings in the decade before the 1994 law, 31 in the 10 years the law was in force (Sept. 13, 1994 to Sept. 12, 2004) and 47 in the 10 years after it expired. As noted, some of that increase stems from population growth.
Earlier, the Postgave “Three Pinocchios” to the claim that the end of the assault weapons ban led to a rise in mass shootings. It has since revised that conclusion, given new data. “The body of research now increasingly suggests the 1994 law was effective in reducing mass-shooting deaths,” the Post concluded. Still, it left the claim “unrated,” because the evidence is inconclusive.
The claim mass shootings “tripled” after the end of the ban is based on one study, and is speculative at best…..
….President Joe Biden claims the 10-year assault weapons ban that he helped shepherd through the Senate as part of the 1994 crime bill “brought down these mass killings.” But the raw numbers, when adjusted for population and other factors, aren’t so clear on that.
There is, however, growing evidence that bans on large-capacity magazines, in particular, might reduce the number of those killed and injured in mass public shootings.
A day after the Boulder, Colorado, mass shooting, in which 10 people were killed by a gunman in a grocery store on March 22, Biden spoke in support of two House-approved bills that would expand background checks to include private sales. Biden also returned to another campaign promise on gun control: to ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.
“We can ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines in this country, once again,” Biden said. “I got that done when I was a senator. It passed. It was a law for the longest time and it brought down these mass killings. We should do it again.”
Biden is referring to his work as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee when he sponsored and largely shepherded the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act into law in 1994. That law, among other things, included an “assault weapons” ban, which prohibited the sale of certain semiautomatic firearms and large-capacity magazines that could accommodate 10 rounds or more. (Existing weapons on the banned list were “grandfathered,” meaning people could keep them.) A sunset provision, however, meant that the ban expired in 10 years, in 2004.
We wrote about this issue eight years ago, when the gun debate was again raging in Congress. At the time, we found that a three-part study funded by the Department of Justice concluded that the ban’s success in reducing crimes committed with banned guns was “mixed.”
FactCheck.org, Feb. 1, 2013: The final report concluded the ban’s success in reducing crimes committed with banned guns was “mixed.” Gun crimes involving assault weapons declined. However, that decline was “offset throughout at least the late 1990s by steady or rising use of other guns equipped with [large-capacity magazines].”
Ultimately, the research concluded that it was “premature to make definitive assessments of the ban’s impact on gun crime,” largely because the law’s grandfathering of millions of pre-ban assault weapons and large-capacity magazines “ensured that the effects of the law would occur only gradually” and were “still unfolding” when the ban expired in 2004.
Some things haven’t changed much since then. A RAND review of gun studies, updated in 2020, concluded there is “inconclusive evidence for the effect of assault weapon bans on mass shootings.”
“We don’t think there are great studies available yet to state the effectiveness of assault weapons bans,” Andrew Morral, a RAND senior behavioral scientist who led the project, told FactCheck.org in a phone interview. “That’s not to say they aren’t effective. The research we reviewed doesn’t provide compelling evidence one way or the other.”…..
‘Disarming You Is The Point’: Tucker Slams Biden’s Gun Control Speech
…..For the sake of this investigation, we used the definition put forth by the Congressional Research Service. The CRS’s website explains that it “works exclusively for the United States congress, providing policy and legal analysis to committees and members of both members of the house and senate, regardless of party affiliation.” The website further explains that the CRS is a “shared staff to congressional committees and members of congress. CRS experts assist at every stage of the legislative process.”
Finally we come to the Congressional Research Service’s definition: “The incident takes place in a public area involving four or more deaths—not including the gunman, the shooter selects victims indiscriminately, the violence in these incidents are not a means to an end.” It should be noted that CRS breaks up shootings involving four or more individuals as public, familial, and felony (robbery, gang activity, etc). This is because the motives behind each vary greatly.
To put it simply, congress uses the CRS’s research to develop policy and create laws.
Now that we’re “armed” with the facts we need, lets dissect the statistics being pushed by the media.
The stats used in the news sources cited above stating there have been 307 mass shootings thus far in 2018 are from the Gun Violence Archive. Okay, let’s look a little deeper into the GVA. The mission statement on their website states it is a “non-profit corporation formed in 2013 to provide free online public access to accurate information about gun related violence in the United States.”
We dug into the website’s “mass shooting” report for 2018. We filtered the list by lowest deaths to highest. Immediately 11 out of the 13 pages were disqualified, as there were between 0 and 3 deaths per incident. That means right away, 287 incidents out of 307 do not qualify as a mass shooting by definition. In fact, 155 of these incidents resulted in zero deaths.This is unbelievable.
That leaves only two pages to dig through. The most common theme with the remaining list of incidents is that they were primarily either family or domestic violence related. Using the definition used by the CRS, that removes all but six shootings that actually count as a public mass shooting.Yes folks, there have only been SIX mass shootings this year in the United States – not 307.
Here are the six qualifying incidents:
February 14, 2018, Broward County Florida (Parkland), 17 dead, 17 injured.
April 22, 2018, Antioch, Tennessee, 4 dead, 3 injured.
May 18, 2018, Santa Fe Texas, 10 dead, 13 injured.
June 28, 2018 Annapolis, Maryland, 5 dead, two injured.
October 27, 2018, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 11 dead, 7 injured.
November 7, 2018, Thousand Oaks, California, 13 dead, 2 injured.
Six mass shootings compared to 307 is a substantial difference. The media easily plays off the ignorance of the public, taking advantage of the fact that there is not a universal definition of “mass shooting”, and blowing up an issue that, although very tragic, is only part of a larger picture of violent crime, most of which does not involve firearms…..
🧵 THREAD 🧵
And a noteworthy TWITTER THREAD discussing the idea that the United States leads the world in gun violence:
Larry Elder expresses amazement that The Atlantic article garnered so much attention when [at least] equally disturbing stories exist regarding Joe Biden. From saying Thomas Edison didn’t create the light-bulb (NEW YORK POST), to groping Secret Service agents girlfriends (PJ-MEDIA), to lying about how his wife died (MUSKEGON PUNDIT), to name just a few.
This is just another example of how the media can change peoples views by what they report on and what they do not report on:
“The MAGA hat has nothing to do with inciting racism,” he said. “It’s the Left that wants to demonize Donald Trump, even though we have the lowest unemployment rate we’ve seen in 50 years, even though we have the lowest African-American unemployment rate that we’ve had in the history of the country, even though we keep moving in the right direction.” — SENATOR TIM SCOTT
Andy wrote a piece in NATIONAL REVIEW that is excellent and full of links. But he ends the story with a jaw-dropping quote from Jussie Smollett… and I think it reflects the rejection of the Judeo-Christian God and shows the inward religious “Messianic” when one turns to social-justice or environmentalism:
“While I can only speculate as to Smollett’s motives, perhaps a clue can be found in his bioline on Twitter. Smollett writes: ‘I am simply here to help save the world’.”
To which G.K Chesterton says:
“When a Man stops believing in God he doesn’t then believe in nothing, he believes anything.”
Dennis Prager always points out that environmentalists are self-describing themselves as “saving the planet/humanity.” To which Prager responds in his deep — almost grandfatherly sarcasm — voice, “WHOA whoahoah… you are ‘saving the planet’.” The hubris of the Left is legend.
Andy had an excellent Twitter thread that cataloged a lot of these hate-hoaxes:
The twins noted some comments by Smollett that peaked their skeptical curiosity — other than the people yelling in Obama Country that this was MAGA Country…
Smollett supported Colin Kaepernick’s decision to kneel during the anthem — and he was unhappy the president wanted players to stand for the American flag.
In September 2017 on Sirius XM Progress Radio, Smollett said of Trump, “He’s a pig, a racist, a horrible human being. To me, Colin Kaepernick is very patriotic. He’s doing what he’s supposed to be doing as a citizen of this country. If anything, sadly, the person who was falsely elected to be president of the United States is actually the least patriotic person that we’ve seen in a long time.”
However, it is now a widely known phenomenon, thanks to Smollett. Here are a few real hate-crimes that recently (since Smollett) that have happened:
On Saturday in Bowling Green, Kentucky, a man from Tennessee allegedly pulled a gun on a man wearing a Make America Great Again (MAGA) hat, stuck the gun in the MAGA-hat-wearing man’s face and reportedly threatened, “It’s a good day for you to die.”
The police report stated that the gun-wielding man was identified as James Phillips, 57, of Cottontown, Tennessee, according to WNKY. Phillips admitted he had given the finger to Terry Pierce and his wife, who were shopping at a Sam’s Club, as WBKO reported. WNKY added that according to the citation given Phillips, Pierce responded by giving the finger back at Phillips, prompting him to pull his gun….
The men throwing things at him was not captured on film — but the subsequent confrontation was.
“If you’re going to throw things at me at least do a better job. Why are you attacking a gay man?” Presler says on the video as he approaches the men. “Why are you attacking a gay Trump supporter, I’d like to know?”
The men appear somewhat stunned as he approached them, then asked why he supports President Trump. Presler cited the just-announced effort from the administration to decriminalize homosexuality across the globe. As he was making his point, one of the men yelled “f-ck that n-gga, boy.”
A 23-year-old model who’s appeared in the likes of Maxim magazine finally came forward this month to express her support for President Donald Trump. Elizabeth Pipko, who worked full-time on the president’s 2016 campaign, said she was tired of hiding her support, even if it meant she was risking future modeling jobs.
But along with potentially sacrificing high-paying modeling work, Pipko says she’s now on the receiving end of constant insults, including being called a “Nazi.” As a religious Jew, the young model took such an attack especially hard.
“Since admitting my support for the President and my work for the 2016 Trump campaign, I have been the target of some extremely inappropriate comments and insults,” Pipko said in a statement to The Daily Wire. “The words that people are using to address me are words that should never be used to speak to anyone, but more importantly, words than should never be used to attack someone simply because of their political beliefs.”
Rush Limbaugh dismantles a lie from the Left expressed by Jimmy Kimmel’s monologue regarding Trump’s first few days in office and his rescinding an Obama era bill that was an Executive Order.
If the Left do not like this legal snafu of one President rescinding another’s E.O., pass laws through Congress dammit! U-n-l-e-s-s they just want to u-s-e the controversy to support their wild positions that have no reality in the real world. Here are the organizations who supported Trump’s action (via the WASHINGTON FREE BEACON):
…Officials at the American Civil Liberties Union opposed the rule and called for its repeal because the process did not include sufficient due process protections.
“The rule includes no meaningful due process protections prior to the SSA’s transmittal of names to the NICS database,” the group said in their letter. “The determination by SSA line staff that a beneficiary needs a representative payee to manage their money benefit is simply not an ‘adjudication’ in any ordinary meaning of the word. Nor is it a determination that the person ‘[l]acks the mental capacity to contract or manage his own affairs’ as required by the NICS. Indeed, the law and the SSA clearly state that representative payees are appointed for many individuals who are legally competent.”
On behalf of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), we urge members of the House of Representatives to support the resolution disapproving the final rule of the Social Security Administration which implements the National Instant Criminal Background Check System Improvement Amendment Acts of 2007….
…In December 2016, the SSA promulgated a final rule that would require the names of all Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefit recipients – who, because of a mental impairment, use a representative payee to help manage their benefits – be submitted to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), which is used during gun purchases.
We oppose this rule because it advances and reinforces the harmful stereotype that people with mental disabilities, a vast and diverse group of citizens, are violent. There is no data to support a connection between the need for a representative payee to manage one’s Social Security disability benefits and a propensity toward gun violence. The rule further demonstrates the damaging phenomenon of “spread,” or the perception that a disabled individual with one area of impairment automatically has additional, negative and unrelated attributes. Here, the rule automatically conflates one disability-related characteristic, that is, difficulty managing money, with the inability to safely possess a firearm.
The rule includes no meaningful due process protections prior to the SSA’s transmittal of names to the NICS database. The determination by SSA line staff that a beneficiary needs a representative payee to manage their money benefit is simply not an “adjudication” in any ordinary meaning of the word. Nor is it a determination that the person “[l]acks the mental capacity to contract or manage his own affairs” as required by the NICS. Indeed, the law and the SSA clearly state that representative payees are appointed for many individuals who are legally competent…
…[R]egulation of firearms and individual gun ownership or use must be consistent with civil liberties principles, such as due process, equal protection, freedom from unlawful searches, and privacy. All individuals have the right to be judged on the basis of their individual capabilities, not the characteristics and capabilities that are sometimes attributed (often mistakenly) to any group or class to which they belong. A disability should not constitute grounds for the automatic per se denial of any right or privilege, including gun ownership.
So, if you donated the ACLU after President Trump’s executive travel ban, congratulations. Yesterday’s vote was your victory, too…..
In recent years, advocates for the mentally ill created more boundaries for law enforcement and healthcare workers to forcibly hospitalize Americans who are suspected of being a danger to both themselves and others. The 1966 Lanterman Petris Short Act (LPS Act) was California legislation designed to reform the antiquated state of mental institutions in the state.
It should be noted that LPS was signed by Governor Reagan in California but only after pressure from groups like the ACLU stepped in and sued on behalf of patients who were being involuntarily hospitalized. Other states followed suit with their own similar involuntary and voluntary commitment statutes.
According to U.S. Veteran’s Affairs, “Maurice Rodgers, spokesman for the California State Psychological Association, called the plan the “Magna Carta of the Mentally Ill,” while the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), officially in support of the legislation, raised objection to the fact that the patient had to personally petition for a due process hearing at the initial point in the commitment.
….Later, the Carter administration signed into law the Mental Health Systems Act of 1980, which largely promoted the same idea for national facilities. In 1981, when both parties in Congress agreed to the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1981, President Reagan signed that into law. One of it many provisions was to eliminate federal funding for community services and thereby transfer funding back to individual funding or state-funded efforts. Had Reagan even been aware of that part of the Act, he would have immediately realized the Act was negating the disastrous effects of the LPS he experienced as governor of California.
In other words, the State needs more funding control over mental health facilities, whether local, community, or state. Serious cases could still be funded through Medicaid, creating a virtual federal funding pool of money. This was formalized in the Mental Health Planning Act of 1986.
In effect, bipartisan policies recommended that the Federal government transfer government funding of community mental health facilities back to the states. State-funded facilities as well as privately-funded facilities were not affected by that policy. Reagan signed the bill into law as part of an overall spending cut package. As he would have known, complete state funding of facilities resulted in terrible mental healthcare, but state governments had an obligation to provide for this. However, in 1986, he also signed into a law another bipartisan solution to have Medicaid assist with funding. The laws closed not a single facility.
Ergo, to the liberals, REAGAN CLOSED THE MENTAL HEALTH FACILITIES. The fact that states closed some facilities and let staff go at others due to their own budget issues is unimportant because, of course, liberals hated Reagan. And still do.
So when you hear the argument that Reagan closed the mental health facilities, ask the name of one health facility that Reagan actually closed. And when it closed. And how he closed it. And if you hear that Reagan closed it by extenuation of a funding cut, ask which particular bill he signed into law specified that particular facility be closed.
Or is it a case that bipartisan governments at the state and federal levels attempted to improve healthcare treatment and that bipartisan governments within the states screwed things up so badly that individual departments of health closed down less effective facilities? You will have lost the typical liberal at the word bipartisan….
…As a lifelong Democrat (of the Irish-Catholic-Labor variety), I think Reagan did some good things and other things I didn’t support. But one thing Reagan didn’t do was single-handedly “close down” mental hospitals thus triggering 40 years of mental health hell.
Two other forces actually determined the fate of mental health care in this state. You might call them acts with unintended consequences. Here’s the history.
In 1967, the Lanterman-Petris-Short Act (LPS Act) a so-called “bill of rights” for those with mental health problems passed the Democratic-controlled Assembly: 77-1. The Senate approved it by similar margins. Then-Gov. Reagan signed it into law.
It was co-authored by California State Assemblyman Frank Lanterman, a Republican, and California State Senators Nicholas C. Petris and Alan Short, both Democrats. LPS went into full effect on July 1, 1972.
The bipartisan law came about because of concerns about the involuntary civil commitment to mental health institutions in California. At the time, the act was thought by many to be a progressive blueprint for modern mental health commitment procedures, not only in California, but in the United States.
Its main purposes were:
To end the inappropriate, indefinite, and involuntary commitment of mentally disordered persons, people with developmental disabilities, and persons impaired by chronic alcoholism, and to eliminate legal disabilities;
To provide prompt evaluation and treatment of persons with serious mental disorders or impaired by chronic alcoholism;
To guarantee and protect public safety;
To safeguard individual rights through judicial review;
To provide individualized treatment, supervision, and placement services by a conservatorship program for gravely disabled persons;
To encourage the full use of all existing agencies, professional personnel and public funds to accomplish these objectives and to prevent duplication of services and unnecessary expenditures;
To protect mentally disordered persons and developmentally disabled persons from criminal acts.
Initially, mental health advocates pushed for community-based mental health facilities that would replace the closed mental hospitals.
But that never happened because even though post-Reagan the legislature was still controlled by Democrats, no major funding for new community-based mental health facilities ever occurred. And that situation basically is still the case today.
The second force at work in the mental health care issue were the courts and what is known as “deinstitutionalization.”
During the 1960s, many people began accusing state mental hospitals of violating the civil rights of patients. Some families did, of course, commit incorrigible teenagers or eccentric relatives to years of involuntary confinement and unspeakable treatment. Nurse Ratched, the sadistic nurse famously portrayed in the book and film “One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest,” became a symbol of institutional indifference to the mentally ill.
By the late 1960s, the idea that the mentally ill were not so different from the rest of us, or perhaps were even a little bit more sane, became trendy. Reformers dreamed of taking the mentally ill out of the large institutions and housing them in smaller, community-based residences where they could live more productive and fulfilling lives.
A mental patient could be held for 72 hours only if he or she engaged in an act of serious violence or demonstrated a likelihood of suicide or an inability to provide their own food, shelter or clothing due to mental illness. But 72 hours was rarely enough time to stabilize someone be held another two weeks for evaluation and treatment.
As a practical matter, involuntary commitment was no longer a plausible option…..