For Breitbart.com, Warner Todd Huston writes: On May 14, Jill Abramson, the first female executive editor of The New York Times, was suddenly fired by the paper. A myriad of explanations have been offered for her ouster, but an intriguing one flying under the radar is the ire she reportedly raised by launching an investigation into charges that the paper’s CEO, Mark Thompson, had a role in a sex scandal that embroiled the BBC, as Breitbart News previously reported.
“Jimmy Savile, was rocked by sex abuse accusations that went all the way back to the 1960s when Savile was a young broadcaster with the BBC.”
Ken Auletta of The New Yorker magazine noted that Abramson was not in attendance with Arthur Sulzberger, Jr., the Times’ publisher, and Managing Editor Dean Baquet during the annual City University Journalism School dinner on Monday, May 12. This was likely the first public sign that Abramson was on the way out as only two days later the paper announced she was fired.
“…investigations by British authorities uncovered hundreds of teens, both girls and boys, that were sexually abused and exploited over the decades by Savile and a handful of other BBC employees.”
Still, the media has been filled with many reports over the last year that the editor was grating on her bosses. Since her firing, several reasons have been proffered in the press as to why the first female editor was released by the paper of record but one in particular seems to be flying below the radar and may be of far more importance than it seems.
NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik pointed out on Twitter that one of the things Abramson did that riled her bosses was to send an investigator to London to investigate the past conduct of Times CEO Mark Thompson, who was the head of the British Broadcasting Corporation during the biggest child sex abuse scandal in the history of British media. Read the rest of this entry »
Talk about creative coping mechanisms for being alone — from the blogger who photographs selfies with his imaginary girlfriend to the company that takes your stuffed animals on vacation without you, Japan appears to be cornering the market on accommodating solo travelers.
You can now add the “anti-loneliness” Moomin House Cafe to the menagerie of “wait, what?” strokes of Japanese brilliance.
We first wrote about the Moomin House Cafe in 2012, but the cafe went viral a few weeks ago and has since been besieged with customers wanting a taste of its “anti-loneliness” magic. CNN’s Yuki Arawaka paid a visit (see gallery photos) following the cafe’s new surge in popularity. Read the rest of this entry »
There are many ways to measure a superhero’s worth. Numbers of babies saved is a pretty solid one. And then there’s the literal way of measuring a superhero’s net worth.
Buddy Loans created a chart that itemizes the wealthiest superheroes and villains. Because who cares about stopping that comet hurdling towards earth if your stock portfolio isn’t impressive?
Each week seems to bring another incident. Who will the thought police come for next?
How ironic that the persecutors this time around are the so-called intellectuals. They claim to be liberal while behaving as anything but. The touchstone of liberalism is tolerance of differing ideas. Yet this mob exists to enforce conformity of thought and to delegitimize any dissent from its sanctioned worldview. Intolerance is its calling card.
Each week seems to bring another incident. Last week it was David and Jason Benham, whose pending HGTV show was canceled after the mob unearthed old remarks the brothers made about their Christian beliefs on homosexuality. People can’t have a house-flipping show unless they believe and say the “right” things in their life off the set? In this world, the conservative Tom Selleck never would have been Magnum, P.I.
This week, a trail-blazing woman was felled in the new tradition of commencement shaming. International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagardewithdrew from delivering the commencement speech at Smith College following protests from students and faculty who hate the IMF. According to the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, this trend is growing. In the 21 years leading up to 2009, there were 21 incidents of an invited guest not speaking because of protests. Yet, in the past five-and-a-half years, there have been 39 cancellations.
For WIRED, Andy Greenberg writes: A burgeoning subculture of 3-D printed gun enthusiasts dreams of the day when a lethal firearm can be downloaded or copied by anyone, anywhere, as easily as a pirated episode of Game of Thrones. But the 27-year-old Japanese man arrested last week for allegedly owning illegal 3-D printed firearms did more than simply download and print other enthusiasts’ designs. He appears to have created some of his own.
“With the Liberator we were trying to communicate a kind of singularity, to create a moment…”
Among the half-dozen plastic guns seized from Yoshitomo Imura’s home in Kawasaki was a revolver designed to fire six .38-caliber bullets–five more than the Liberator printed pistol that inspired Imura’s experiments. He called it the ZigZag, after its ratcheted barrel modeled on the German Mauser Zig-Zag. In a video he posted online six months ago, Imura assembles the handgun from plastic 3-D printed pieces, a few metal pins, screws and rubber bands, then test fires it with blanks.
“…The broad recognition of this idea seemed to flip a switch in peoples’ minds…We knew that people would make this their own.”
– Cody Wilson
It’s been a full year since I watched the radical libertarian group Defense Distributed test fire the Liberator, the first fully printable gun, for the first time. Imura is one of a growing number of digital gunsmiths who saw the potential of that controversial breakthrough and have strived to improve upon the Liberator’s clunky, single-shot design. Motivated by a mix of libertarianism, gun rights advocacy and open-source experimentation, their innovations include rifles, derringers, multi-round handguns and the components needed to assemble semi-automatic weapons. Dozens of other designs are waiting to be tested.
The result of all this tinkering may be the first advancements that significantly move 3-D printed firearms from the realm of science fiction to practical weapons. Read the rest of this entry »
Pamela Geller writes: On the very day that the devout Muslim group Boko Haram released a video of the kidnapped Nigerian schoolgirls, clad in burkas and being forced to recite the Qur’an, author Dean Obeidallah declared in the Daily Beast that “The Nigerian terrorist group that kidnapped hundreds of schoolgirls has nothing to do with Islam, and it’s grotesquely irresponsible of the media to suggest it does.”
Mr. Obeidallah, it’s not the media that suggests it; it is Boko Haram that declares it.
“The reason the media use the rather silly term ‘Islamist’ or ‘Islamic radical’ is because the devout Muslims engaged in jihad are citing Qur’an chapter and verse. They are identifying themselves as such.”
It is not grotesque to tell the truth. What is grotesque is that the widely-read Daily Beast would run such damaging propaganda by a failed yet self-described “comic.”
[Geller's book: Stop the Islamization of America: A Practical Guide to the Resistance is available at Amazon.com]
The Daily Beast is doing an end run for Islamic jihad when these girls’ lives hang in the balance. That is a different kind of savagery. The Beast is more worried about Islam’s PR than it is in educating the public on the most grave threat to freedom, not just in Nigeria but across the world.
“Disinformationalists like Obdeillah don’t have a theological leg to stand on.”
Clearly, the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls is just more empty rhetoric from hypocrites, not an honest clarion call for action.
The Effect of One Party Rule
George Will writes: Democracy can be cruel because elections deprive the demos of the delight of alibis and the comfort of complaining. Illinois voters have used many elections to make theirs the worst-governed state, with about $100 billion in unfunded public pension promises and $6.7 billion in unpaid bills. The state is a stark illustration of the effect of prolonged one-party rule, conducted by politicians subservient to government employees unions.
A new Gallup poll shows that Illinois has the highest percentage — 50 percent — of residents who want to leave their state. If Illinois voters reelect Gov. Pat Quinn, they will reject Bruce Rauner, who vows to change the state’s fundamental affliction — its political culture.
The state’s strongest civic tradition is of governors going to jail. Four of the last nine have done so. Lt. Gov. Quinn ascended to the governorship in 2009 because Gov. Rod Blagojevich, of fragrant memory, tried to sell the Senate seat Barack Obama vacated. In 2010, Quinn defeated a downstate social conservative by 32,000 votes out of 3.7 million cast. Quinn’s job approval today is about 35 percent.
Rauner, born a few blocks from Wrigley Field, grew up in a Chicago suburb — his father was an electrical engineer at Motorola; his mother was a nurse. He attended Dartmouth, earned a Harvard MBA and joined the private-equity firm GTCR, where he made enough money to buy his nine homes. When a reporter asked him if he is among the 1 percent, he cheerfully replied, “Oh, I’m probably .01 percent,” an answer that was better arithmetic than politics. Read the rest of this entry »
For FiveThirtyEight, Ben Casselman writes: Mark Zuckerberg was a billionaire before age 30 and investors are fretting over the prospect of an another tech bubble, but according to the data, U.S. entrepreneurship is on the decline.
“Business dynamism is inherently disruptive, but it is also critical to long-run economic growth.”
Americans started 27 percent fewer businesses in 2011 than they did five years earlier, according to data from the Census Bureau. As a share of all companies, startups have been declining for more than 30 years.
It isn’t clear what’s causing that decline, which accelerated during the recession but long predates it. The aging of the baby boom generation may be part of the explanation, since people are more likely to start businesses when they are younger. The U.S. economy is also increasingly dominated by large corporations, suggesting deeper structural changes working against small companies. People have pointed to other explanations, from increasing licensure requirements in many industries to high corporate tax rates to a broader decline in innovation and productivity growth.
Whatever the reason, the decline has economists worried. New businesses are akey driver of job growth, responsible for more than 15 percent of new job creation despite accounting for just 2 percent of total employment. And they play a vital role in promoting innovation and productivity gains across the economy. In a recent report from the Brookings Institution, Ian Hathaway and Robert Litan wrote that the decline in entrepreneurship “points to a U.S. economy that has steadily become less dynamic over time.” Read the rest of this entry »
Salus populi suprema lex: In the name of the people’s safety, the dictator’s will is law.
This essay is an excerpt from Angelo Codevillo’s new book (Hoover Press).
Angelo M. Codevilla writes: The loss of peace abroad has upset the balance between the various elements of life in America, fed domestic strife, and resulted in the loss of peace at home. The need for protection against foreign jihadists and their American imitators occasioned the empowerment of a vast apparatus of “homeland security” that treats all Americans as potential enemies—with only a pretense of even-handedness. In fact, the sense that enemies among us must be dealt with reinforced our bipartisan ruling class’s tendency to regard its own domestic political opponents as another set of persons whose backward ways must be guarded against and reformed. A spiral of strife among Americans resulted. In the light of history and of reason, any other outcome would have been surprising.
[Angelo M. Codevilla's book: To Make and Keep Peace Among Ourselves and with All Nations is available at Amazon.com]
After 9/11 our ruling class came together on the proposition that, at home as well as abroad, America is at war against enemies so evil that there must be no limit to fighting them, whose identity we must always seek but can never know; that to focus on, to “profile,” the kinds of persons who have committed terrorist acts, is racist and provocative; that any American is as likely as any other to be a terrorist, and hence that all must submit to being sifted, screened, restricted—forever. Childhood in the “land of the free, the home of the brave” must now include learning to spread-eagle and be still as government employees run their hands over you. Patriotism is now supposed to mean obeisance to the security establishment, accepting that the authorities may impose martial law on whole cities, keep track of all phone calls, or take whatever action they choose against any person for the sake of “homeland security,” and that theirs alone is the choice whether to disclose the basis for whatever they do. Read the rest of this entry »
[VIDEO] Political Speech, Cellphone Searches, and the Future of TV: Three Supreme Court Cases to WatchPosted: May 15, 2014
The Supreme Court is fast approaching the end of its current term. The court has already handed down major decisions on both affirmative action and campaign finance reform and is poised to rule on the contraception mandate of the Affordable Care Act. Reason Senior Editor Damon Root offers three more cases worth paying particular attention to, the decisions of which will impact warrantless cellphone searches, the limits of political free speech, and broadcast television in the digital age.