More Toxicity

Instapundit responds to an article on how toxic manhood means that women are worn out from doing all the 'emotional labor' in their relationships. "ANYONE WHO THINKS THAT WOMEN DO ALL THE “EMOTIONAL LABOR” has never been married to an actual woman."

Boy, that's the truth. No woman who's been married for any length of time is likely even to take offense at the suggestion. We all know how much weight we've had to put on our partners at times.

There's less to this issue than it seems even where it bears weight. It's definitely true that I'm not always in touch with my feelings, and that my upbringing is partly responsible for that. The major inflictors of 'you should be less sensitive; you should not be emotional' were women, in especial my schoolteachers. I'm not even mad about it. Sometimes the best we can do in life still involves hurting other people. Life is like that. Sometimes, we have to hurt them a little to help them in other ways.

This is one of those cases. Frankly, emotional children are more work, and these ladies had 27 kids to handle and try to teach something too. It was in their interests to suppress emotions in whatever way they could, and for that matter it was in our interests that they should succeed. Otherwise, we wouldn't learn as much -- possibly nearly nothing, if they were unable to convince any of the 27 little heathens they were saddled with to please just let it go, sit down, shut up, and pay attention.

Nor is it all bad to be able to do that. Just to give one clear example, the day my father died I sat right next to him while he died. Half an hour later I needed to drive my mother, my wife, and a child through rush hour traffic in Atlanta. I could do that safely because of this very capacity to suppress emotions. Not only their safety depended on it, but the safety of everyone driving a car around the one I was driving.

In any case, the article may be right that men have fewer friends than they used to do; I think of "Bowling Alone" as a model of that. But it's not true for me; I have some very good friends. Some of them are even men, so those men have at least one good male friend too.

War for Profit

This is a strange cast of characters. Erik Prince makes sense; but Steve Bannon? James O'Keefe in Qatar, working against the impoverished and enslaved Bangladeshis and Pakistani workers?

Of course, it's The Intercept, and their quality is a mixed bag. Some of their stuff is really solid, but this may not prove to be.

Spygate and Anti-Democracy

A few links that go together in my mind.

One: A summary of yesterday's NYT story about spies being deployed against Trump campaign figures; and another, separate story about Ukraine admitting that they were asked for damaging information about Trump's campaign.

Two: Both California and Washington state have bills aimed at forcing Trump either to release his tax returns, or not appear on the ballot. California tried this once before, but the bill was vetoed as unconstitutional. Since it was declared so by the governor rather than a court, however, they're free to try again.

Three: Facebook and its allied platforms banned a host of conservative voices, as well as Louis Farrakhan. While the latter is far from my favorite person, defending his freedom of speech is important just because it is how you defend the principle that speech should be free. Loathsome speech has to be defended in order to secure the whole.

Four: Anti-populism as anti-democracy. This last really should be read in full.

From the Rooftops

Colonel Kurt.
Our first responders are awesome, but it takes nothing away from their heroism to point out that the title “first responder” is a misnomer. The citizens on site are the first responders. And they should be ready to respond. We all should. Personally.

Some duties of citizen should never be outsourced. If you are an able-bodied adult, it’s your duty to know how to stop the bleeding and give CPR until the pros who do it for a living arrive. And it’s your duty (and right) to defend yourself, your family, your community and your Constitution. With guns – effective guns, which sometimes means your concealed pistol and sometimes means the guns that those who want you defenseless call “assault weapons.”...

It’s your duty to be prepared to defend our community. Your duty. Yes, being a citizen of a free country is sometimes hard. Too bad. Tighten up and be ready and able to pick up a weapon. Whether it’s a riots and disaster, or whether it’s some scumbag who decides to shoot up your house of worship or a shopping mall, it’s on you.
That's it. That's right.

Two Very Unpopular Ideas From the Federalist

The Federalist has two pieces today forwarding ideas that are explosively unpopular with the campus left, and the activist left in general.

1) "The Moral Case for Israel Annexing the West Bank -- And Beyond."

2) Christina Hoff Summers facing off with a popular #MeToo activist in front of an activist crowd.

Venezuelans Regret Gun Ban

After Brazil elected a new president partially on his promise to restore gun rights to a people oppressed by criminals, Venezuela may do so once it gets rid of the oppression of its dictator. This article was written in December, before the current chaos, but it captures the popular sentiment that the ban was a mistake.

Eli Lake writes, today, about the right of the people to overthrow a dictatorship and restore lawful government.

Antifa Buying Cartel Guns

Why? According to the left, you can buy legal guns more easily than birth control.


The article says the US 'backs' the coup -- or restoration of the lawful government, depending on which side you're on -- but so far it seems like 'backing' is limited to some praise on Twitter. Call me when the 75th Rangers show up.

This is rich, too:
On the sidelines of the recent Belt and Road Forum in Beijing, Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping discussed Venezuela on Sunday and "highlighted that it is totally unacceptable when anyone tries to topple authorities in a third country, attempting to use force and illegal international pressure against a sovereign state, in order to change the leadership there," according to Peskov.
Taiwan and Ukraine will be so relieved to hear of your principled stand, comrades.

Ancient Wild Ruins

If any of you have the opportunity to travel in Wales, here is a guide to some things that are worth seeing.

"Mermaid" To Challenge Susan Collins

Susan Collins' decision to vote for Brett Kavanaugh -- who, by the way, turns out to be innocent of all of the charges hastily arranged against him in an attempt to destroy his life and career -- had prompted a challenger for her Senate seat.
On Facebook, Kidman is described as a "criminal defense attorney by day and radical fat queer/performance artist/model/musician/activist most other times." On Spotify, Kidman is "Bee Kay Esq." and the biography is the same. Five songs with collaborator Mr. Gadget use "inhuman instruments to give voice to human vulnerability with beats that invite just enough dancing to feel slightly less dead."

On the website for the Maine Educationalists on Sexual Harmony (MESH), Kidman is described as a "queer feminist lawyer, mermaid, writer, activist, and artist."

Mermaid is "an artistic identity, not a serious identity," Kidman said.
Thank goodness for that.

Confederate Memorials are War Memorials

Well of course they are. What else would they be?
[Judge] Moore finds the issue to be so clear-cut that "if the matter went to trial on this issue and a jury were to decide that they are not monuments or memorials to veterans of the civil war, I would have to set such verdict aside as unreasonable..."
I'm not a big fan of judges setting aside jury verdicts. All the same, what else could a reasonable person conclude? Maybe judges should or shouldn't have the power to set aside a jury verdict; I think I'd tend to side with the jury, all things considered. But if we allow, for the point of discussion, that a judge might exercise reasonable judgment -- well, what else would he rule, than than a war memorial is a war memorial?

These are strange times.

"Lock Her Up"

Donald Trump ran on the mantra, and it may have won him the election; it certainly won him this debate.

So why hasn't he locked anyone up, even when there are clear and demonstrable crimes? Angelo Codevilla answers the question.
Politics is not responsible for the non-application of Section 798 to Brendan and Clapper. It is difficult to imagine that the public would not approve massively the straightforward application to prominent men of a law that is so unambiguous, which is the foundation of arguably the main part of U.S intelligence, and which has been applied countless times to ordinary people.

Rather, the absence of real politics—of real competition between opposing sides in American life—is the culprit. What we see is that those in the upper echelons of American life, whether they call themselves Republicans or Democrats, have greater loyalty to the ruling class to which they belong than to any law or institution. The refusal to apply Section 798 to Brennan and Clapper —the fact that they are free men —is simply the most obvious manifestation of the fact that we have a ruling class, that it is coherent, and that it has yet to be challenged in any serious way.
Time for a change.

NRA Board in Executive Session

LTC(R) Ollie North announced yesterday that he will not be returning as President, and prosecutors in New York announced subpoenas related to charges Colonel North made about misuse of funds by the longstanding NRA leadership. Today, the board has gone into an executive session that has so far lasted six hours.

As I've mentioned before, I know Ollie North. I met him in Iraq, spent some time with him there, and have spent time with him on other occasions here. I trust him, and know him to be a man of honor. My strong assumption is therefore that he is going to prove to be on the right side of this. If he says there's been dirty business going on there, the audit he called for is warranted and wise.

The NRA is an extremely important civil rights organization, and I am angry that anyone would put it at risk for any reason -- but especially if it was done for personal profit. We'll have to keep an eye on this story and see how it shakes out. The best source I know of right now is this journalist's Twitter feed.

UPDATE: Few public changes announced at the end of the closed-door session. Keep your eyes on the ball.

Death of the Calorie

I was surprised when this article, allegedly on nutrition science, began with an armed kidnapping in Mexico. But it is in fact about nutrition science, and it's one of the more interesting and useful things I've read lately.

Architecture for Architects

Would you volunteer to live in one of these houses?

No Church in Sri Lanka

John Rendon reports that, a week after the Easter attacks, churches in Sri Lanka are conducting televised services rather than in-person ones because of security concerns. Hard to receive Communion over the television set.