12 thoughts on “News/Politics 2-21-18

  1. Symbolic, but appropriate. As was posthumously admitting one of them to West Point.


    “The U.S. Army has awarded the Medal of Heroism to three Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps cadets who were killed during the Parkland, Florida, school shooting last week.

    The Army presented the medal to the family of Alaina Petty, 14, at a memorial service on Monday, and will give it to the family of Peter Wang, 15, during his memorial service on Tuesday, the Daily Beast first reported. The family of Martin Duque, 14, will receive the medal on Saturday.

    The Medal of Heroism recognizes cadets who display courage in actions that “involved the acceptance of danger and extraordinary responsibilities.”

    All three students were enrolled in the Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (JROTC) at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. During last week’s shooting there that killed 17 people, Petty, Wang, and Duque all worked to protect their classmates.”

    Liked by 3 people

  2. All fluff, no stuff.


    “The Internet Research Agency is the Russian troll farm targeted last week by Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Reporter Adrian Chen, who writes for the New Yorker, was one of the first people to offer an in-depth report on the group in a piece published by the New York Times Magazine back in the summer of 2015. Chen was also one of the first people to notice that employees of the IRA seemed to be moving toward support for Trump in a way that might suggest they wanted him to win the election.

    Given all that, you might expect Chen would be one of the people arguing that the group’s efforts to interfere in the 2016 election were a very big deal. But yesterday, in an interview with MSNBC’s Chris Hayes, Chen said exactly the opposite.

    “It’s my personal belief that it isn’t all that effective,” Chen said. He continued, “You know it’s essentially a social media marketing campaign with 90 people, a couple million dollars, a few million dollars behind it, run by people who have a bare grasp of the English language and not a full grasp of who they’re targeting, what they’re targeting.

    “If you think about that in terms of just a normal marketing campaign, that’s not going to be a very good bang for your buck.”

    Chen went on to say that what did seem effective was the amount of paranoia generated by the idea that Russian trolls could be controlling social media.

    “I think that the paranoia aspect, right, the idea that there is this kind of all-powerful, or immense propaganda machine that’s going on and that anybody who is tweeting something that’s you don’t like or who is kind of causing trouble on the internet can be chalked up to Russia,” Chen said.

    “That is a very powerful thing that is going on and is really increasing now in the wake of these indictments in kind of a worrying way,” he continued, adding, “There’s not a lot of people saying ‘let’s hold back, maybe it’s not that big of a deal.’”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. When your favorite meme turns around and bites you in your hypocritical ……….


    “A California state lawmaker at the forefront of the #MeToo movement faces a growing number of sexual misconduct allegations herself. Four former employees filed a formal complaint against Democratic Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia. Another says he was fired after protesting when she suggested playing “spin the bottle.”

    Garcia has authored numerous bills about sexual assault and consent. She was even recently featured in Time magazine’s “Persons of the Year” issue recognizing the #MeToo movement’s “silence breakers.” But now she is on voluntary leave, as investigators look into claims she groped two men.

    Daniel Fierro was working in the California State Capitol when he said Garcia cornered him at a staff softball game.

    “I remember feeling a little confused about what happened,” Fierro said.

    “She touched you sexually?” Villarreal asked.

    “Yea, she — her hand dropped down. She touched – she grabbed my butt. And I spun to turn around … and as I turned, she tried to reach for my crotch and she did,” Fierro said.”

    “A second unnamed accuser also claims Garcia made a graphic sexual proposal before groping him, something she denies.

    The four former state employees that have filed the formal complaint allege Garcia talked openly about “sexual activities with other elected officials,” claimed to have sex in “assembly offices” and said “having sex… was a good way of getting information.”

    “That’s definitely not anything that happened. Not only did I not have those conversations, but I’m also not engaging in sex for information or for votes,” Garcia said.

    As a #MeToo activist, she’s called on those accused of harassment to resign immediately – but she does not plan to do so herself.

    “I don’t know if I would go so far as to say that it’s hypocritical. What I do know is that it’s incredibly questionable,” Fierro said.”

    I would. It’s hypocritical.


  4. Stealing the Democrats’ thunder.


    “The Trump administration moved Tuesday to allow health insurers to sell lower-cost, less-comprehensive medical plans as an alternative to those required under ObamaCare – in a plan that drew swift protest from congressional Democrats.

    The proposed regulations would allow insurers to sell individual consumers “short-term” policies that can last up to 12 months, have fewer benefits, and come with lower premiums.

    The plans also would come with a disclaimer that they don’t meet the Affordable Care Act’s consumer protection requirements, such as guaranteed coverage. Insurers could also charge consumers more if an individual’s medical history discloses health problems.

    But at a time of rising premiums, Trump administration officials touted the option as a boost for those who need coverage but don’t qualify for the Affordable Care Act’s subsidies and would otherwise face paying the full premium cost.

    “We need to be opening up more affordable alternatives,” Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told reporters. “It’s one step in the direction of providing Americans with alternatives that are both more affordable and more suited to individual and family circumstances.””


  5. Honestly. Don’t these people have jobs to do? Do we really pay people to flirt and be sexually aggressive in the office? Check her phone for texts . . . . maybe we should require government phones to have a cut off on the number of texts per phone per day?

    If they need to be treated like the teenagers they’re acting like, let’s use some parental controls.

    (I’m obviously becoming an old lady).

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I was thinking about Billy Graham’s life. And about Franklin Graham. Billy Graham seems bigger than life when you think about all the things he accomplished. It would be hard to follow in his shoes. It’s easy to forget that Billy was also vilified for some of the positions he took when he was younger. It’s only with the perspective of time that truth is more fully seen.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. An interesting article in The American Conservative slid under my radar last week. A couple of respectable conservative journalists (Ross Douthat is one) have suggested that Conservatives might improve the state of marriage, family and the common culture if Conservatives made banning pornography a top priority. Pornography hits our culture at the root, and it’s everywhere—inside the church and out; inside the schools and out; inside our homes via the internet, and outside at work.

    I also thought the quote from Russell Kirk at the end of this excerpt was a little indicative of how far toward Libertarianism and away from traditional thinking Conservatism has drifted in the past few decades. And I wonder if that is why pornography has been a virtual non-topic for Conservatives politically.

    …What’s happening is that these “sex-negative” feminists are coming back around to the idea of the Fall of Man. Russell Kirk, in his “Ten Conservative Principles,” explained that “human nature suffers irremediably from certain grave faults”:

    “…if the old institutional and moral safeguards of a nation are neglected, then the anarchic impulse in humankind breaks loose: “the ceremony of innocence is drowned.” The ideologues who promise the perfection of man and society have converted a great part of the twentieth-century world into a terrestrial hell.”

    Until the advent of fusionism, no conservative would have doubted that the government is (to a strictly limited extent) one of those safeguards. The idea that mankind’s Fallenness is a grave threat to social stability, and that we must in extreme cases use the force of law to restrain our destructive appetites, is not a progressive one. It’s deeply conservative.

    We on the right shouldn’t pooh-pooh them for it. We should welcome them with open arms. We should explain that their horror at man’s potential for depravity is not only valid: it’s central to both orthodox Christianity and Anglo-American conservatism.

    In fact, Kirk wouldn’t be surprised to hear of the traditionalist remnant finding common cause with leftists. As he wrote in “Libertarians: Chirping Sectaries”:

    “Conservatives have no intention of compromising with socialists; but even such an alliance, ridiculous though it would be, is more nearly conceivable than the coalition of conservatives and libertarians. The socialists at least declare the existence of some sort of moral order; the libertarians are quite bottomless.”


    PS I’m not sure my internal blockquotes will show with the correct spacing, so I added quotes around the lines quoted within the article–hope it doesn’t turn into a mess. :–)

    Liked by 3 people

  8. Debra – With so much of porn being available on the internet, I wonder if it can ever be effectively banned.

    One of my prayers for The Boy is that God would protect him from being exposed to pornography too young, and that when or if he comes across it, he will be repulsed by it in some way. A former pastor told about sneaking some looks at a “dirty magazine” when he was around 12. He felt so guilty about it, he had to confess it to his mom, and that feeling of guilt kept him from looking again. I pray The Boy might have a similar reaction.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Kizzie, Yeah. I don’t think adult porn has been seriously prosecuted since Clinton was president, and I doubt that’s coincidental. People like your pastor grew up in a time when even sneaking a peek was taboo. We’ve removed that taboo culturally, and unless we’re willing to at least move in the general direction of putting it back by taking away the financial incentive for production, I expect that such ‘peeking’ will only continue to produce curiosity, experimentation, boredom, and worse, rather than guilt.

    Taking away the financial incentive and prosecution does produce some results. GE is or was at one time one of the largest distributors of smut in hotels. Even the Hartford Courant briefly considered going in that direction because it was so lucrative. Neither of those institutions would openly consider child porn because of bad publicity and the certainty of prosecution. But the lines are being re-drawn all the time, so never say never. :–/

    Liked by 1 person

  10. An organization called Enough Is Enough is one woman’s campaign to make the internet safer for everyone. She sponsored the anti-porn pledge that Trump signed (and Hillary refused to sign) during the election promising to crack down on porn and once again enforce the federal laws on the books. It’s an interesting site.



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