Daily Caller: MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell, and local NBC affiliates across the country are uniformly referring to the Washington Free Beacon as an “anti-Clinton website,” without even mentioning the site’s name.
The description came after the publication’s Alana Goodman wrote a story Monday called “The Hillary Papers,” a window of sorts into Hillary Clinton‘s thinking from her now-deceased best friend.The story was heavily hyped on Drudge before it even ran. Calling the Free Beacon an “anti-Clinton website” is odd treatment for a story that could just as easily landed in The New York Times, New York Magazine or elsewhere.
Free Beacon‘s founder Michael Goldfarb told The Mirror, “The piece wasn’t anti-Clinton, and our website isn’t anti-Clinton, but occasionally the facts are anti-Clinton–and when they are we report them. In this case, some of the documents showed Hillary as ruthless and calculating and vindictive, others showed her in quite a sympathetic light.
A travel and food blog, Bitten by the Wanderlust Bug, has a great little photo series featuring an unlikely theme for a Hong Kong restaurant. The Charlie Brown Cafe. View the whole series, it’s fun. Here’s some samples:
I call myself a ‘Mortician’ for want of a more succinct term in the UK for my profession, but the real job title is Anatomical Pathology Technologist. In my eight years assisting Pathologists with autopsies (post-mortems) I saw every possible face of death, and believe me none could be considered ‘beautiful’. I looked upon death every day: some days with grim determination and a sense of duty to grieving families, but other days with a sense of horror or outrage at man’s inhumanity to man, or just their sheer bad luck. Some days I’d be sated with a valuable sense of being needed at this last point in a patient’s journey, other days I’d shower long and hard to remove death’s cold touch from my flesh, drink wine to remove death’s bitter after-taste and wash my clothes twice to remove death’s hideous, cloying presence. So when I read this recent…
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Mike Church writes: President Obama’s kill-list memo, detailing the legal rationale for the extrajudicial killing of American citizens, reveals a world of tyrannical political power that used to be the sort of thing Jack Ryan would be dispatched to deal with, but usually to some Baltic republic ruled by an evil tyrant with only one name. The memo is so brazen in its own declaration of universal supremacy I have to wonder if the unnamed authors used a computer for the composition or just let God etch the words on the screen with lightning bolts.
This is what our empire has evolved to: a messianic state with all the fine ornaments of a cult including temples, ministers, and now a prosecutor, judge, and executioner masquerading as an executive branch. Viewing this perversion of a formerly federal system, a citizen of the old republic now stands at a similar vantage point to where Edmund Burke saw the mobs of the French General Assembly. ”That assembly, since the destruction of the orders, has no fundamental law, no strict convention, no respected usage to restrain it. Instead of finding themselves obliged to conform to a fixed constitution, they have a power to make a constitution which shall conform to their designs. Nothing in heaven or upon earth can serve as a control on them.”
Note: The ‘Meredith Powell Sex Tape” video in circulation is fake.
The cam-show video that’s in multiple places on YouTube, purporting to be disgraced former Tacoma teacher Meredith Powell shakin’ her booty for a webcam, is just a woman who looks sorta like Powell. Get real. It’s not her. You know what’s real? This is real:
The mislabeled “Meredith Powell webcam video” is getting a lot of web searches and misdirected traffic (we’re getting a lot here, too, because of the word “video”) but there’s no credible evidence that it’s her. If it was Powell, I guarantee, you’d see it splashed all over TMZ, or Drudge.
If you want to see NSFW Meredith Powell material, you might want to check out this court document. (see first page above, page two is below the news video) It’s hilariously–or disturbingly–graphic. Bordering on pornographic. There was unmistakable sexual contact.
If you’re a parent, you might not think it’s funny in the least. If you’ve ever been on the wrong end of sexual misconduct or abuse between adult and minor, or a teacher and student, regardless of whether the perp was male or female, you definitely won’t find it funny.
We’ve been covering the Powell story since it broke. Here’s some links:
[More: The Meredith Powell Letter]
A nighttime look at 52nd Street, circa 1948. (Photo by William P. Gottlieb)
Matthew Kassel writes: Being a jazz musician in New York City has never been easy. For most of its century-long existence, jazz has gotten by on the margins, and so have those who’ve played it. But the gloomy consensus last night in a panel discussion at the CUNY Graduate Center was that being a jazz musician in the city has never been harder.
“In every decade, New York has welcomed, housed and encouraged jazz,” said Gary Giddins, a former jazz critic for The Village Voice and the director of CUNY’s Leon Levy Center for Biography. Now, Mr. Giddins noted, that no longer seems to be the case.
Mr. Giddins was moderating a talk called “Jazz and New York: A Fragile Economy” in the Proshansky Auditorium. It featured the pianist Jason Moran, Motéma Music founder Jana Herzen and Mary Schmidt Campbell, dean of the Tisch School of the Arts. The audience skewed old, white and male—a pretty good representation of the kind of listeners jazz attracts. (Make of that what you will.)
There are any number of reasons why jazz might not have the same foothold in the city’s cultural milieu as it once did. Venues, for instance, are disappearing, rents are rising, critics are being cut from newspapers and the recording industry is in flux….read more….Observer.com
Seattlepi.com says it obtained an email intended for Knox from Mike Kulich, the owner of Los Angeles-area pornography company Monarchy Distribution. Kulich writes, “the general consensus is you are absolutely smoking hot. Since you came back into the headlines, our loyal fan base has been emailing us nonstop asking about you.” The offer also includes a percentage of sales of the film, according to the PI…
Found on PopWatch: The latest sketch from New York-based comedy group POYKPAC features a very public breakup between a cheating husband and his pregnant wife. The plot twist to this seemingly overplayed scenario? The couple’s entire breakup conversation is had using only movie titles.
Solution: Purchasing an Additional 141,160 rounds of Hornady Sniper Ammo Helps Ease Insecure Feelings, Inspires Trust, and Promotes Domestic Tranquility
Note: it’s not just DHS that’s stockpiling and doing massive ammo purchases. The U.S. Department of Education (what?) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration are stockpiling ammo. Question: Why does N.O.A.A., and the Department of Education need to stockpile tons of hollow point bullets?
The Department of Homeland Security is buying more bullets with a solicitation for over 141,00 rounds of sniper ammunition. According to a solicitation posted on FedBizOpps, the federal agency is looking to procure 141,160 rounds of Hornady .308 Winchester 168gr A-MAX TAP ammunition. Such ammunition is sometimes retailed as “Zombie Max,” a marketing gimmick alluding to its power. “What makes the .308 ammunition so deadly is the long range capability of the round,” notes James Smith. “The ability is called ballistic coefficient, or the efficiency of a projectile in overcoming air resistance as it travels to its target.
“It’s a personal peek into his life — it’s just wonderful..”
The 2,500 digitally scanned materials were housed at Hemingway’s former Cuban estate, called the Finca Vigía, where he lived for 21 years until he died in 1961.
This material reflects Hemingway’s everyday life in Cuba, said Susan Wrynn, an Ernest Hemingway curator at the Kennedy Library.
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder will step down this year, he said in an interview with the New Yorker’s Jeffrey Toobin in the magazine’s Feb. 17 edition.
The most controversial, combative, distrusted, divisive, nakedly political, and openly partisan Justice Department in decades may be about to have an overdue transition? The Washington Times reports: In a feature article, Mr. Holder said he plans on staying in his position “well into” the year.
Last November, Mr. Holder told CBS News he didn’t have “any plans” to step down.
Mr. Holder has made voting rights the test case of his tenure, the New Yorker reported. He has been a vocal critic of the Supreme Court case that invalidated key parts of the Voting Rights Act and has supported Congressional action to renew and revise the law.
Meanwhile, just yesterday, David Jackson at USA Today reported Attorney General Eric Holder has “no specific plans to step down by the end of 2014“, Obama administration officials say, contrary to a new magazine report.
The New Yorker, in a piece about Holder’s battles over voting rights, said President Obama’s attorney general “will leave office sometime this year.”
That is a misinterpretation of a frequent Holder comment that he plans to stay in the job until at least most of 2014, officials said….
Kevin D. Williamson writes: The Left is at war with economic reality. The intellectual poverty of the Left — which is also a moral poverty — is evident in the fact that its leaders are much more intensely interested in incomes at the top than those at the bottom. Examples are not difficult to come by: Senator Elizabeth Warren is visibly agitated by JamieDimon’s recent raise, the AFL-CIO maintains a website dedicated to executive compensation, Barack Obama avows that “at a certain point, you’ve made enough money,” et cetera ad nauseam. The entire rhetoric of inequality is simply an excuse to rage about incomes at the top, a generation’s worth of progressive shenanigans having failed to do much about those at the bottom.
It is the case that incomes at the top have gone up while those in the middle and at the bottom have stagnated or declined in real terms. It is not the case that incomes at the top have gone up because those in the middle and at the bottom have stagnated or declined, nor is it the case that incomes in the middle and at the bottom have stagnated or declined because incomes at the top have gone up. There is a relationship between the two phenomena, but it is not the relationship that progressives imagine it to be.
Philip Seymour Hoffman, R.I.P.
Matthew Hennessey writes: Why is that when a talented and beloved actor dies, the tributes that pour forth always seem to make qualifying references to his or her “generation”? When news raced around the Internet yesterday that Oscar-winner Philip Seymour Hoffman had died of an apparent heroin-overdose at the age of 46, there it was again: He was one of the best actors . . . of his generation. It’s hardly fair to the artist—and nearly everyone seems to agree that Hoffman was an artist of rare ability—to imply that he was only one of the better ones to pop up in the last ten or 15 years. Hoffman was much better than that.
Philip Seymour Hoffman was orders of magnitude more talented than the other actors of his generation, who, like the well-known actors of most generations, tend to opt for the obvious over the obscure and a big paycheck over a big challenge. Most actors desire more than anything the respect that comes from making brave choices. But few have the horse sense to distinguish between a brave choice and a boring one. Fewer still have the commitment necessary to deliver on those choices. And almost none have the chops to pull off what Hoffman did in his too-short career. It’s no exaggeration to say that he was one of the greatest film actors of the last 50 years or more.
After bashing The Onion earlier, it seems they’ve unexpectedly redeemed their street creed…
BROOKLYN, NY—Acknowledging that the man’s right-wing views are more nuanced than one might expect, 36-year-old liberal Diana Hardwick confided to reporters Tuesday that her conservative acquaintance Brady Daniels is, quite frustratingly, not racist. “We got to talking about immigration, and I really wanted him to undermine his argument for stricter border controls by saying something disparaging of Latinos, but apparently his opinions are based entirely on national security issues instead of race—which is super irritating,” Hardwick said of Daniels, who reportedly describes himself as a “strong conservative” on fiscal issues but, annoyingly, exhibits no racial biases. “It would be so much easier if I could just write him off as a bigot, but as far as I can tell he harbors no resentment or disdain toward people of color. For God’s sake, we argued every issue from states’ rights to income disparity but nope, he didn’t say anything even tacitly racist. Not once.” Hardwick later concluded that her acquaintance’s opposition to most of President Obama’s policies meant he was probably “close enough” to count as a racist.
Bursting with love, but want to be an originalist instead of a conformist? Prefer to avoid consumerist holiday corporate brainwashing? For the enterprising self-motivated romantics out there, MAKE magazine’s Stett Holbrook has some hands-on suggestions:
Valentine’s Day is Friday… plenty of time to come up with a gift idea. But an idea is not enough. You need to deliver on it. You could go the flower-and-candy route, but that’s hardly originally and unless you grew the flowers and made the candy, and it’s certainly not very makerly. But we’re here to help. Here are 10 DIY Valentine’s Day gift ideas to get your creative juices flowing…
This is either a misguided exercise, with the well-intended aim of illustrating complex economic theory, or a refreshingly inventive way to combine pop culture and economics. I can’t tell, I’m inclined to think it’s the latter. It’s definitely worth a look. Personally, I think Adam Smith would have approved.
Longwood University music teacher Chris Kjorness writes:
It has been 50 years since the Beatles arrived in the United States, forever altering the landscape of popular music. But contrary to the general notion that the mop-tops hopped off a plane in 1964 and were just so talented and lovable that they took the states by storm, the Beatles’ conquering of America was actually the result of a long and complex struggle. It was the end result of the actions of numerous people acting in their own interests, with little knowledge of or concern about what the other was up to.
While the Brits are credited with giving the world the idea of popular music through the comic operettas of W. S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan, after World War II British popular music was in a creative slump. Weak transnational relationships between record labels and the dominance of state-controlled media tended to keep out foreign records (particularly American ones), leaving British audiences to make do with British artists’ covers of American hits. As a result, recordings of American folk and rhythm and blues artists became almost contraband, complete with all of the cool rebelliousness the black market can provide.
Mollie Hemingway writes: The movie begins in Bricksburg, where all media, business, and government are controlled by the Octan Energy Corporation. The Bricksburgers are all rule-followers who love “President Business,” the embodiment of crony capitalism who runs the whole show. Under his iron-fist rule, everyone follows the instructions at home and work, enforced by cheery “I’ve got my eye on you!” advertisements and surveillance cameras.
“The LEGO Movie” isn’t just pro-business. There might not be a more classically liberal film in the history of film-making”
The world’s free thinkers — known as master builders — are President Business’ greatest threat. These are the mini-figurines who reject the cultural and legal norms enforced by President Business. They are caught via a massive surveillance and military system and locked up against their will. One of the rule-following citizens is a perfectly boring chap named “Emmet,” a construction worker on a team that destroys interesting and unique buildings and replaces them with brutal and uniform office structures.
One day Emmet spies free-thinking hipster “WyldStyle” breaking some rules and digging through some bricks. Following her, he ends up discovering an important item that might be able to thwart President Business’ evil plans. The movie has easily one of the most palatable dystopian settings ever presented to children, made more accessible by its fidelity to LEGO limitations and style.
The film is being presented by fans and detractors as anti-business. Here’s FOX Business:
If you don’t want to watch, a few highlights from the panel discussion:
“The LEGO Movie” is latest example of Hollywood’s anti-business agenda …. It feels a little bit more threatening when they start to push this out to our kids … the Head of a corporation is an easy target … embed anti-capitalist messages … Hollywood has been long dominated by far left, very anti-capitalist.”
Tony Lee reports: Though Gallup’s economic confidence index is negative in all 50 states, Washington, D.C., also known as the nation’s preeminent “Boomtown,” is the clear outlier, with the only positive index. In fact, it’s not even close.
Gallup conducted daily tracking interviews with 178,071 adults nationally from January through December 2013, and the polling organization said it interviewed “at least 500 residents in every state and interviewed 1,000 or more in 41 states. In the District of Columbia, 462 interviews were conducted.”
It’s no surprise that Apple is getting in on the landmark anniversary of Beatlesmania in the US. It’s launched a Beatles channel for the Apple TV with the Beatles’ initial appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show available for free streaming. It also promotes Apple’s release of the Beatles’ U.S. albums, which differ greatly from the UK versions in the early years.
It’s been 50 years since The Beatles made their way to the US and changed music forever, and now Apple is commemorating that with a special channel on the Apple TV. For a limited time, Apple TV owners will be able to view The Beatles’ back-to-back performances on The Ed Sullivan Show 50 years ago.
David Rotman writes: Given his calm and reasoned academic demeanor, it is easy to miss just how provocative Erik Brynjolfsson’s contention really is. Brynjolfsson, a professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, and his collaborator and coauthor Andrew McAfee have been arguing for the last year and a half that impressive advances in computer technology—from improved industrial robotics to automated translation services—are largely behind the sluggish employment growth of the last 10 to 15 years. Even more ominous for workers, the MIT academics foresee dismal prospects for many types of jobs as these powerful new technologies are increasingly adopted not only in manufacturing, clerical, and retail work but in professions such as law, financial services, education, and medicine.
Economic theory and government policy will have to be rethought if technology is indeed destroying jobs faster than it is creating new ones.
That robots, automation, and software can replace people might seem obvious to anyone who’s worked in automotive manufacturing or as a travel agent. But Brynjolfsson and McAfee’s claim is more troubling and controversial. They believe that rapid technological change has been destroying jobs faster than it is creating them, contributing to the stagnation of median income and the growth of inequality in the United States. And, they suspect, something similar is happening in other technologically advanced countries.
US court has ordered conservation group Sea Shepherd to stay at least 500 yards away from Japan’s whaling fleet in the Southern Ocean.
The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit banned the group from “physically attacking any vessel engaged by the plaintiffs”.
The court was responding to an appeal by Japan’s whalers, after an earlier case was rejected. The injunction remains in force until the court formally rules on the appeal.
The ruling by the court also bans Sea Shepherd from “navigating in a manner that is likely to endanger the safe navigation” of any whaling vessel.
How Iowa Flattened Literature
Yet once upon a time (1967, to be exact), Paul Engle, director of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, received money from the Farfield Foundation to support international writing at the University of Iowa. The Farfield Foundation was not really a foundation; it was a CIA front that supported cultural operations, mostly in Europe, through an organization called the Congress for Cultural Freedom.
With CIA help, writers were enlisted to battle both Communism and eggheaded abstraction. The damage to writing lingers.
Seven years earlier, Engle had approached the Rockefeller Foundation with big fears and grand plans. “I trust you have seen the recent announcement that the Soviet Union is founding a University at Moscow for students coming from outside the country,” he wrote. This could mean only that “thousands of young people of intelligence, many of whom could never get University training in their own countries, will receive education … along with the expected ideological indoctrination.” Engle denounced rounding up students in “one easily supervised place” as a “typical Soviet tactic.” He believed that the United States must “compete with that, hard and by long time planning”—by, well, rounding up foreign students in an easily supervised place called Iowa City. Through the University of Iowa, Engle received $10,000 to travel in Asia and Europe to recruit young writers—left-leaning intellectuals—to send to the United States on fellowship.
“Cognitive dissonance or not, Das Kapital has so thoroughly permeated our understanding of capitalism that we’re seldom even aware that we are citing it. It’s become a kind of cultural white noise – always present, but rarely acknowledged.”
Considering that The Onion is post-college humor, it’s not surprising in the least, as universities inoculate students with Marxist dogma. It’s as natural to typical college students as term papers, speech codes, censorship, conformist ‘protests’ (of approved targets) spring break customs, cheating on tests, screwing, drinking beer, and nearly worthless degrees that lead to low-paying jobs and moving back in with their parents. The New Republic‘s admiring, fawning, pro-communist praise of the Onion is, for better or worse, fairly accurate.
William Bigelow writes:
Noting pieces such as “Man Briefly Forgets Hotel Staff Are Not Human” as a reminder of “capitalist commodification not just of goods, but of humans’ subjective agency in the form of labor,” “Laid Off Man Finally Achieves Perfect Work-Life Balance” as espousing “the contention that capitalism alienates the proletariat from their species-consciousness by making them participants without control in the economic relations of their culture,” “Majority of Office’s Supplies Used to Apply for Different Job” as a “clear indictment of false consciousness, arising inexorably from bourgeois dogma as it perverts our very understanding of fulfillment, family, and success…”
The program makes it easy for the president to spy on and blackmail his enemies
Glenn Harlan Reynolds writes: Most of the worry about the National Security Agency’s bulk interception of telephone calls, e-mail and the like has centered around threats to privacy. And, in fact, the evidence suggests that if you’ve got a particularly steamy phone- or Skype-sex session going on, it just might wind up being shared by voyeuristic NSA analysts.
But most Americans figure, probably rightly, that the NSA isn’t likely to be interested in their stuff. (Anyone who hacks my e-mail is automatically punished, by having to read it.) There is, however, a class of people who can’t take that disinterest for granted: members of Congress and the judiciary. What they have to say is likely to be pretty interesting to anyone with a political ax to grind. And the ability of the executive branch to snoop on the phone calls of people in the other branches isn’t just a threat to privacy, but a threat to the separation of powers and the Constitution.
chinaSMACK has an interesting collection of news images, screen caps, news links, articles. On YouTube, I found this video of a news broadcast.
CCTV Exposes Dongguan Sex Industry
Though it’s brief, and doesn’t have particularly insightful reporting, at around 43 seconds there’s a brief glimpse of just a fraction of the almost unimaginably large police force [A total of 6,525 police officers allegedly took part in a crackdown] There’s just no western equivalent for a scene like that: a prostitution raid involving thousands of law enforcement officials, and countless TV cameras capturing hundreds (or possibly dozens) of frightened, cowering hookers, hotel managers, and guests.
Check out chinaSMACK for more links, photos, news sources.
This is from the YouTube page:
Authorities in Dongguan, near Guangzhou, suspended two police chiefs and shut 12 entertainment venues allegedly involved in prostitution in a crackdown after state television reported on the sex trade in the city over the weekend.
Police detained 67 people after raiding the venues in five townships revealed by China Central Television on Sunday night, the Guangdong provincial public security department said yesterday. In two news programmes, CCTV said local police ignored prostitution in the city and allowed the industry to thrive five years after the Ministry of Public Security had conducted a crackdown. In a citywide bust after raiding the venues fingered by CCTV, authorities detained another 162 people at 39 locations.