Interesting Items 05/30

Howdy All, a few Interesting Items for your information.  Enjoy –

In this issue –

1.  Uvalde
2.  Signatures
3.  Regulations
4.  Admin Courts
5.  Disinformation
6.  NLRB
7.  Monkeypox

1.  Uvalde.  I won’t comment a lot on what happened or didn’t happen in Uvalde yet, as we are still in the Fog of War part of the discussion, where the media and democrats light their hair on fire, put the gun ban knife in their teeth and charge off to save us from ourselves.  But there are some things we know early on that are concerning. 

  • Appears the local police on scene misinterpreted what was going on as a hostage negotiation rather than an active shooter.  Most of the shooting apparently took place early on, and quickly tailed off.  There are multiple reports of on scene command threatening those who wanted to enter the building with tasers and arrest.  Even the Border Patrol team that took the shooter down reportedly had to wait for up to a half hour while the kids shot bled out.  My guess is that this is going to get really ugly and expensive for local law enforcementBreitbart has a timeline they’ve been adding to for most of the week.  I would take it with a large caliber (salt lick sized) grain of salt at this time, but it is at least an opening bid in the discussion. 
  • The media was completely into fake news starting from the very beginning, having to pivot in real time from their standard white supremacist narrative when the shooter was found to be Latino.  The narrative quickly shifted to gun control, which is apparently good persuasion, as immediate polling showed the Republican lead in congressional races shrinking substantially, as indys fled.  This was a single poll reported by Scott Adams midweek and has yet to be confirmed.  If this is real, and a shooting like this can swing polls, expect democrat operatives / FBI to orchestrate a similar shooting a week or two before the November election. 
  • All three sides of the argument (conservative v media and democrat) defaulted into predictable territory.  After figuring out who the shooter was, media and democrats went immediately to a predictable call for gun control, though not without internal problems.  A promised vote in the Senate on gun control legislation was cancelled out of hand by Majority Leader Schumer.  Republicans mostly defaulted into “from my cold, dead hands” territory while a few RINOs got their time in front of the cameras pontificating about new gun control efforts.
  • The shooter appears to be yet another fatherless young man raised by a single mother and grandmother (who he also shot on the way out the door).  He was reportedly bullied at school for a long time.  There are no answers as yet how he got the $2,000 to purchase a pair of AR-class weapons and ammunition before the attack.
  • None of the proposed solutions actually address the twin problems of deranged, nihilistic young men who believe killing things and people is their only way out of the abyss.  These sorts of attacks are a direct result of the cultural rot, the elimination of boundaries, societal guardrails by the left over the last few generations.  The Israelis solved the problem of school shootings in what is effectively a war zone.  They arm and train teachers.  They have visible armed security in the schools.  And they profile.  Want to solve this?  Quit talking about gun control and adopt the Israeli approach.
  • Another approach would be to agree to have a gun control discussion with the left.  This is an old persuasion play that opens the door for a public discussion.  Then take that discussion to a place and a subject the left can’t comprehend.  If they want new age limits on firearms ownership, agree to the discussion, and suggest similar limits be set on the use of social media.  Want to limit firearms purchases to age 18?  Do the same thing with social media of all sorts, which would go a long way to helping control mental illness among the young.
  • Finally, we are going to have to do something about the teachers’ unions turning the schools into bullying factories.  Targets are expected to simply sit there and take it.  Eventually they choose (however poorly) otherwise. 

2.  Signatures.  One of the basic lessons of political life is to vet both your candidates and contractors.  In a story out of Michigan, at least five Republican candidates for governor, including the top two, may end up being disqualified from the ballot for having insufficient signatures on their petition for the ballot.  Michigan law requires 15,000 valid signatures for a gubernatorial race, 1,000 for congress, and 600 for a judge.  Michigan Bureau of Elections recommended that 18 candidates be disqualified from the ballot based on invalid signatures.  Breakdown is 5 governor, four congressional, nine judicial.  By party, there are 8 Republicans, one democrat, 9 nonpartisan.  At first reading, this appeared to be yet another Gretchen Whitmer attempt to diddle the election, and at some level, I expect it is.  OTOH, it looks like the candidates chose to do business with the wrong company, one headed by a guy who got himself in trouble submitting fraudulent signatures in Florida and Virginia.  The state Board of State Canvassers was supposed to meet on May 26 to rule who makes the ballot and who doesn’t.  In the end, the 5 Republican candidates were disqualified out of hand.  Expect lawsuits.  Michigan also disqualified another 15 candidates for the legislature and judiciary for incomplete paperwork and false statements on their applications.  This technique reprises the O’Bama technique of winning elections by disqualifying his opposition to get to the Illinois legislature.  This unforced error may give Whitmer a second term. 

3.  Regulations.  The other anti-economy tool used by the O’Bama retreads infesting the Harris – Xiden administration are regulations.  Economic research suggests that a 15% increase inf ederal regulations increases the cost of consumer goods by a full percent.  In their first year in office, Team Biden added more than 72,000 pages of regulations, executive orders, and agency notices.  This is 25% more than the Trump first year.  They also pushed through more major regulations than any president in modern US history, 69 of them as compared with 52 under O’Bama. Trump pushed through 22, but he was an aggressively anti-regulation president.  One tool to fight this is the Congressional Review Act, which allows a majority vote on a congressional resolution to overturn any regulation.  Unfortunately, this also requires a presidential signature on the resolution.  A veto-proof majority can override a veto on one of these.  The Act has been used 20 times in 20 years, three times last year, so there is both hope and available tool.

4.  Admin Courts.  One of the great projects by Justice Clarence Thomas is reining in the administrative state.  His work over the last 30 years is starting to show fruit, with an opinion out of the Fifth Circuit aimed at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).  The case was the SEC denying fraud defendants the right to a jury trial, acting without the necessary guidance from congress.  Dodd Frank passed after the 2008 financial crisis expanded the SEC’s ability to seek penalties in its administrative courts.  The majority found that penalties are similar to debt collection, a private right, and the defendants were entitled to a jury trial.  Administrative judges lack authority under the Constitution.  Congress did not provide guidance defining when the SEC can bring cases to their in-house courts rather than the Article III courts.  This was a split opinion, 2:1.  The SEC is not the only executive agency with its own judicial system, so the opinion has significant potential, especially if the Biden (In)Justice Department is silly enough to let it get in front of what may be a hostile SCOTUS.  The notion of administrative courts is problematic, as administrative judges are hired, paid, evaluated, and promoted based on their performance to the agency that hired them.  They are in no way independent, and their rulings tend to be over 90% in favor of the agency they work for.  Agencies do far worse in front of Article III courts.  This is potentially a Big Deal, the first small step in dismantling the unconstitutional administrative state Woodrow Wilson started building a century ago. 

5.  Disinformation.  The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) disinformation board was put on hold based on public blowback aimed at the 33-year-old Mary Poppins wannabee Nina Jankowitz.  She resigned, but DHS retained their desire to control and censure political (and all other) speech.  Jankowitz is gone, so the pause was lifted, the wooden stake removed from its black little heart, and it is going forward under new management, former DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff.  Better yet, he will be working hand in hand with former Deputy Attorney General Jamie Gorelick, yes, the same Jamie Gorelick who made it impossible for intel and defense agencies to share information, the Gorelick Wall, that helped make the 9-11 attack possible.  Note that the Gorelick Wall has not only been rebuilt, but it has been strengthened, with multiple federal agencies refusing to share information with DHS.  INS is one of many.  And now Gorelick is in charge of how what she calls disinformation percolates through the country.  What could possibly go wrong?  For her part, Jankowitz referred to a 2020 Army War College Quarterly paper that lays out a strategy for government dealing with disinformation.  Since publication, in her view, disinformation has only worsened and gotten more entrenched in domestic politics.  She wanted to root out disinformation entrenched in the public sphere.  Interesting goal, that, as her former boss DHS Secretary Mayorkas was adamant that Americans would never be surveilled or monitored.  Tough to root out entrenched disinformation unless you know who is promulgating it and why.  Someone is lying. 

6.  NLRB.  The NLRB got its back side handed to it in federal court last week.  The Third Circuit ruled to vacate a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) decision that charged then Federalist Editor Ben Domenech with unfair labor practice over a sarcastic 2019 tweet aimed at people at the Federalist.  The tweet was triggered by a walkout at Vox over stalled union negotiations.  It said the following:

FYI @fdrlst first one of you that tries to unionize I swear I’ll send you back to the salt mine

At the time, nobody at the Federalist was trying to form a union.  Neither does the Federalist own a salt mine.  A leftist writer who does not work for the Federalist filed a complaint with the NLRB.  The first was withdrawn, quickly followed by a second complaint by a MA lawyer.  That second complaint was acted upon by the NLRB.  The NLRB subpoenaed employees and years of internal e-mails in an attempt to uncover hostility to unionization.  They offered a deal, delete the tweet and publish information encouraging unionizing the Federalist.  Domenech refused and the case went before a NLRB administrative court judge who ruled that the tweet was not a joke at all.  Rather, it and the rest of the Federalist were anti-union website and organization.  Neither the NLRB nor the admin court judge called witnesses.  Affidavits file by Federalist employees were ignored.  Domenech said the NLRB technique in these cases is to outlawyer its target, with 5-7 government lawyers on the case at all times.  The game is to intimidate the target into submission, which is the first and last goal.  Domenech and the Federalist refused to play.  And they won, making the NLRB legal staff and its admin court look foolish in the process.  Good work by both the Federalist and its legal representation from the New Civil Liberties Alliance (NCLA). 

7.  Monkeypox.  Both the regime and the media are working as hard as they can to make monkeypox the Next Big Thing in the pandemic world.  There are a few problems with this.  First, it is not all that transmissible, needing close personal contact to spread it.  Some have described it as a sexually transmitted disease (STD).  Second, the smallpox inoculation appears to be effective, at least at this point in the festivities.  While there are rumors of the Wuhan Virology Lab experimenting with weaponizing it, this outbreak does not appear to come from China.  Rather, it has been traced back to a Pride Festival a couple weeks ago in Gran Canaria, attended by 80,000.  A second outbreak in Spain has been traced to the Maspalomas Pride festival.  Gonna be difficult to lock down the world once again based on a STD outbreak at pride festivals.  Doesn’t mean the Powers That Be won’t try. 

More later –

– AG

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