Small beer

I hear a lot of conservatives screaming about the whole sit-down-and-have-beer-thing with the President and the Cop.  “How could you?!  After what he said about you!”

Easy, how could you.

He’s the President of the United States.  Why wouldn’t you want to have the chance to sit down with the President of the United States, regardless of the circumstances?  What other chance is there of that happening to Sergeant James Crowley?

I think it’s especially easy to answer here, where at the end of the day you’ve really suffered no harm and arguably have “one over” on him.  Crowley has nothing to lose, except the phony “respect” of the Loud Right.

Season of woe


Jewish tradition teaches that on Tisha B’Av (the Ninth day of the month of Av) , five national calamities occurred:

  1. During the time of Moses, Jews in the desert accepted the slanderous report of the ten spies, and the decree was issued by God forbidding them from entering the Land of Israel. (1312 BCE — traditional Jewish dating)
  2. The First Temple was destroyed by the Babylonians, led by Nebuchadnezzar. 100,000 Jews were slaughtered and millions more exiled. (586 BCE)
  3. The Second Temple was destroyed by the Romans, led by Titus. Traditional sourcest teach that two million Jews died, and another one million were exiled. (70 CE)
  4. The Bar Kochba revolt was crushed by Roman Emperor Hadrian. The city of Betar — the Jews’ last stand against the Romans — was captured and liquidated. Over 100,000 Jews were slaughtered. (135 CE)
  5. The Temple area and its surroundings were plowed under by the Roman general Terentius Rufus. Jerusalem was rebuilt as a pagan city — renamed Aelia Capitolina — and access was forbidden to Jews.

Other grave misfortunes throughout Jewish history occurred on the Ninth of Av, including:

  1. The Spanish Inquisition culminated with the expulsion of Jews from Spain on Tisha B’Av in 1492.
  2. World War One broke out on the eve of Tisha B’Av in 1914 when Germany declared war on Russia.  German resentment and the upheaval and instability that resulted set the stage for the Holocaust.
  3. On the eve of Tisha B’Av 1942, the mass deportation began of Jews from the Warsaw Ghetto, en route to Treblinka.

More on the Ninth of Av, which begins tonight. Observant Jews will fast (a complete fast — no food, no water) until nightful Tuesday night. For us, this is the “hardest” day of the year. (Reposted from past years.)

Everything you do is wrong

According to John Dvorak, the rise and fall of Microsoft is emblematic of not so much a lack of vision as a lack of blinders:

What’s shocking is that the cash cows, specifically the Windows operating system and the Office suite, have managed to finance all these idiotic efforts for so many years. While Microsoft’s profits and sales were way down this last quarter, it is only a matter of time before losses begin. Read more about the disappointing earnings.

The cash cows are dying of neglect. This company cannot keep its eye on the ball because there are too many shiny objects to distract it.

The Honeymooners


REASON TV: Matt Welch and Nick Gillespie on Why The Obama Honeymoon Is Over.

I’m sure it’s a good piece, but as long as I have to go to Reason TV to find it, the honeymoon still isn’t over.

When Glenn links to ABC with this story, that’s when I expect to see rolling pins and broken dishes.

The seven percent solution

Dave Price writes about choice and risk:

Ace makes a great point on one of the many problems in the health care bill:

On Fox & Friends, they offered another good talking point: Currently 90% of all Americans are covered by insurance. Obama’s vaunted plan will cover, theoretically, another 7%.

So: We’re destroying the entire system to move from 90% to 97% coverage? And that 7%, of course, includes a lot of young people who think they don’t need health insurance because they’re young and healthy (and, in fact, they’re right, according to the statistics; even more right when you consider that each young person is forced to pay way too much for health care, as he subsidizes older customers).

I’m one of those people.  I don’t have health insurance now, and I haven’t ever carried it when I wasn’t working a W-2 job, because I’m generally healthy and don’t particularly want to subsidize people who are more likely to require medical care. It’s possible, of course, I could regret this decision due to circumstances beyond my control, but I’d prefer to put that money into investments and play the odds by making an effort to stay healthy via exercise and supplements and generally engaging in low-risk behavior.

It would be great if everyone talking about this issue read Dave’s piece, in its entirety, to just be exposed to this perspective and his typically lucid analysis.

Academic freedom a queer notion

David Lat reports that the NYU community is up in arms over the appointment of Dr. Li-ann Thio,

the NYU visiting law professor whose views on homosexuality have made her the legal academic everyone loves to hate. It’s an online petition, addressed to the NYU law school and university administration, expressing “deep dissatisfaction with New York University School of Law’s appointment of Dr. Thio Li-Ann as a Global Visiting Professor of Law.”

The petition concludes by articulating the belief “that the Administration’s decision to appoint Dr. Thio was a grave mistake and her designation to teach ‘Human Rights in Asia’ is inappropriate and offensive.” There’s an additional option, selected by many (but not all) of the signatories, calling upon the administration to rescind Dr. Thio’s appointment.

Not all the signatories are quite that crass, or open, about their limited scope of their tolerance for unfashionable intellections as to that moral “human rights” issue regarding which no dissent is tolerable.

This should be interesting to watch.

Attorney Ronald D. Coleman