July 2017, Part 1

Jim Miller on Politics

Pseudo-Random Thoughts

This Week's Collections Of Political Cartoons from Politico and RealClearPolitics.

My favorites:  In Politico, Kal's pro wrestling match and Ann Telnaes's negotiation; in RealClearPolitics, Michael Ramirez's graveyard and Steve Breen's flag.
- 7:39 AM, 8 July 2017   [link]

In France, Vladimir's Last Name Is Spelled "Poutine"  When I was reminded of that this morning, I remembered a certiain French-Canadian delicacy.
Poutine . . . is a Canadian dish of Quebecois origin, made with French fries and cheese curds topped with a light brown gravy.[1][2]  This fast-food dish is typically found across Canada and in some places in the northern United States.[3][4][5]  In Canada it is sold in small "greasy spoon" type diners (commonly known as cantines or casse-croûtes in Quebec) and pubs, as well as by roadside chip wagons (commonly known as cabanes à patates, literally "potato shacks") and in hockey arenas.[6]
So, when a journalist in French-speaking Canada refers to "President Poutine", do people there smile, just a little bit?
- 1:06 PM, 7 July 2017   [link]

Selling LNG To Poland Is A Big Deal —Potentially:  Andrew Malcolm is right to say this is important.
Media will focus overwhelming attention today on the G-20 economic summit in Germany for the initial encounter between President Trump and Russia’s Vladimir Putin. We previously explored here what’s at stake in that encounter.

But from a lasting economic standpoint, folks, what happened Thursday in Poland and tomorrow in Britain could be much more important.

In Warsaw, as Ed Morrissey points out, Trump offered leaders from Poland and numerous other European countries long-term LNG deals to diversify their supplies and avoid creating undesirable political leverage with a certain large country to the East that has not hesitated to cut off natural gas supplies for political reasons.
Potentially, because those long-term agreements have yet to be signed.
- 12:29 PM, 7 July 2017   [link]

Another Pretty Good Joke From Trump:  However unintentional.
President Donald Trump tweeted on Friday that 'everyone' in Hamburg, Germany was talking about the Democratic Party's refusal to allow the FBI to examine its office computer server in conjunction with a probe into Russia's alleged election meddling.

'Everyone here is talking about why John Podesta refused to give the DNC server to the FBI and the CIA.  Disgraceful!' Trump wrote in the hour before he arrived for the start of the G20 summit.
Maybe the strain of having to read a serious speech — and from what I have read, it was a good speech — got to him.

But it is more pleasant to think that Trump was deliberately joking.
- 10:32 AM, 7 July 2017   [link]

Danny Westneat Should Re-Read George Orwell:  Not 1984 or Animal Farm, but Orwell's famous essay, "Politics and the English Language".

Westneat is unhappy because the Democrats and Republicans in the Washington state legislature reached a compromise that will increase spending on public schools and shift property taxes from poorer areas to wealthier areas.

Why would this bother a Democrat* and "progressive" like Westneat?

Because, in this state, the wealthier areas are often represented by leftist Democrats.

Leftist Democrats who, in Westneats's opinion, keep losing fights with the Republicans.  Westneat is so unhappy that he mixes his metaphors.
There is apparently no flimsier reed than a Democrat playing the game of chicken with a Republican.

Even around here, where Democrats control most of government and seemingly have all the power and leverage, they are the ones who flinch.   Every time.
(There is a small factual error in that second paragraph; the Republicans, in coalition with one dissident Democrat, control the state senate.)

Some will be charmed, some annoyed, by the idea of a reed, flimsy or not, driving a car.

Later that reed is playing cards, and "holding a weaker hand".  Still later, the reed is getting "rolled".

I didn't know reeds could do all those things.

Should you take his analysis in the rest of the column seriously?

Probably not.  The source of his numbers is not exactly unbiased, and there is this inconvenient fact:  Westneat supports an extremely expensive light rail system, also paid for, he would say, by regressive taxes.

So he is in favor of spending for commuter trains in a wealthy area, and opposed, in practice, to spending on schools in poorer areas.

(Westneat is such a partisan that he ought to be paid by the state's Democratic Party, and his columns run as advertisements.)
- 10:02 AM, 6 July 2017   [link]

Almost Everyone Can Learn from experience.

(If they want to.)
- 8:33 AM, 6 July 2017   [link]

Worth Reading:  Dr. Michelle Cretella's commentary on children and the "transgender" movement.
Transgender politics have taken Americans by surprise, and caught some lawmakers off guard.

Just a few short years ago, not many could have imagined a high-profile showdown over transgender men and women’s access to single-sex bathrooms in North Carolina.

But transgender ideology is not just infecting our laws.  It is intruding into the lives of the most innocent among us—children—and with the apparent growing support of the professional medical community.

As explained in my 2016 peer reviewed article, "Gender Dysphoria in Children and Suppression of Debate," professionals who dare to question the unscientific party line of supporting gender transition therapy will find themselves maligned and out of a job.
The movement certainly caught me off guard; it seemed so obviously nutty that I assumed it would quickly die of laughter.

When that didn't happen, I concluded that the so-far successful efforts to suppress debate on the subject can best be explained by proponents fearing that laughter.

Dr. Cretella's commentary contains a whole series of assertions that should be part of that debate — a debate which we really need to have — for the children.
- 3:25 PM, 5 July 2017   [link]

If You Reward Terrorists, You'll Get More Of Them:   That seems obvious enough to me, but the Trudeau government doesn't agree with that common sense conclusion.
Canada's Liberal government will apologize to former Guantanamo Bay inmate Omar Khadr and pay him around C$10 million ($7.7 million) in compensation, two sources close to the matter said on Tuesday, prompting opposition protests.

A Canadian citizen, Khadr was captured in Afghanistan in 2002 at age 15 after a firefight with U.S. soldiers.  He pleaded guilty to killing a U.S. Army medic and became the youngest inmate held at the military prison in Cuba.

Khadr later recanted and his lawyers said he had been grossly mistreated.  In 2010, the Canadian Supreme Court ruled that Canada breached his rights by sending intelligence agents to interrogate him and sharing the results with the United States.
Of course his lawyers said he had been mistreated; that's standard practice for those who represent terrorists.

Some of the charges may even be true, but I suspect most of them are a result of Khadr being treated as a prisoner of war, rather than as a defendant in a civilian trial.

But such awkward thoughts will not occur to most of our "mainstream" journalists, who are happy that Justin Trudeau holds all the fashionable leftist ideas, and — big bonus — is a "dreamboat".

(Good luck on this legal move.

By way of "lance" at Small Dead Animals.)
- 8:38 AM, 5 July 2017   [link]

Chess Players May Find this cartoon disturbing.
- 7:45 AM, 5 July 2017   [link]

Happy 4th Of July!  And thank you to those who make it possible.

Veterans of Foreign Wars at Kirkland 4th of July, 2015

The picture is from the 2015 Kirkland 4th of July parade, which traditionally (and appropriately) begins with a veterans group.
- 7:37 PM, 4 July 2017   [link]

Demography Of The United States:  In 1776, the population of the United States was about 2.5 million.

At the first census in 1790, it had reached more than 3.9 million.  In the next seven decades, it grew at an extraordinary rate, more than 30 percent from one census to the next.

(Extraordinary, but not quite as fast as some amateur demographers predicted in the late Colonial era.)

The population of the United States reached 100 million while Woodrow Wilson was president, 200 million while Richard Nixon was, and 300 million while George W. Bush was.  It is now estimated to be about 325 million.

And growing:
The Census Bureau projects a U.S. population of 417 million in 2060, which is a 38% increase from 2007 (301.3 million).[21]  However, the United Nations projects a U.S. population of 402 million in 2050, an increase of 32% from 2007.[22]
Growing, in spite of the fact that the fertility rate is now below the replacement rate, approximately 2.1 births per woman.

You can see much of our recent history in this population "pyramid":

Population pyramid - United States (2010)

For instance, the "baby boom" should be obvious.  You can also see, if you look carefully, when females begin to outnumber males — in spite of more males being born (about 106 for every 100 females).
- 5:34 PM, 3 July 2017   [link]

Pepper...And Salt is timely.

(The cartoon is at the bottom left.  I expect it to last through tomorrow.)
- 3:22 PM, 3 July 2017   [link]

This Isn't Exactly what I suggested.

But they are getting close.
President Trump on Sunday tweeted a modified video of a wrestling match between himself and his media rival CNN.

The tweet escalates an ongoing war of rhetoric between the president of the United States and the cable news outlet.  The video appears to show Trump attacking and subduing a figure whose face is obscured by a CNN logo.
I just hope they don't forget the "for charity" part.
- 5:22 PM, 2 July 2017   [link]

A Good Defense Lawyer will protect his client.

(Incidentally, that cartoon is a caption contest winner; Jack Ziegler drew the picture, and Will Simon of Brooklyn came up with the caption.)
- 5:03 PM, 2 July 2017   [link]

Happy Birthday!  To our Canadian friends, who are celebrating Canada Day.  (Which they used to call "Dominion Day".)

Canadian flag

Since Canada was founded in 1867, this is their Sesquicentennial.  The man most responsible for that founding was Canada's first Prime Minister, John Macdonald.

Recycled, with some changes, from 2008.

(Picture notes:  This flag appears every Canada Day, a few blocks from where I live, along with the American flag, which you can just see behind it.  In 2008, I finally met the couple that own the flags.  He's American; she's Canadian.  And the two seem to be getting along very well, which may be a lesson for our two nations.)
- 2:36 PM, 1 July 2017   [link]