[PHOTO] ‘If you think Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are awful separately, try to imagine them as one person’

Source: Instapundit, Twitter

‘Bonfire of the Vanities’ Moment



Charmian Neary via Twitter – h/t Instapundit – PJMedia 

‘Toy Journalist’: Politifact Hack’s Not-So-Extensive Effort to Contact National Review Writer Mercilessly Mocked

CHILL: New Zealand’s Proposed Rape Law ‘Reforms’: No Right to Silence, Burden of Proof Shifted to the Accused


From the NZ HeraldDerek Cheng reporting:

Auckland University law professor Warren Brookbanks said both policies challenged two fundamental principles: the right to silence, and the presumption of innocence, which are both protected in the Bill of Rights Act.law professor Warren Brookbanks

Of National’s plan, he said: “It’s an intrusion into the right to silence.”

In the trial process, offenders are in any event always at a serious disadvantage relative to the prosecution, and there are some important protections in the trial process, and the right to silence is a fundamental right. These are part of our democratic rights that apply to all citizens.”

“Innocent people get caught up in the system, and these provisions affecting the right to silence and the presumption of innocence are there to ensure the prosecution has enough evidence to justify bringing a charge.”

Regarding Labour’s proposal, he said reforms in the 1980s already meant that an accused had to show an “honest and a reasonable belief” that the victim was consenting.

“The presumption of innocence is fundamental to our justice system and our society. Requiring an accused person to prove their innocence would undoubtedly result in many injustices and wrongful convictions.”

[Also see: Man falsely accused of sexual assault to sue]

“It means they have to have made some inquiry as to the attitude of the other person. And if they haven’t, then they are acting unreasonably and are going to be convicted.”

Professor Brookbanks said shifting the burden of proof would made it even harder for defendants, especially because it is often one person’s word against the other person’s word. Read the rest of this entry »

Glenn Reynolds: Higher Ed Becoming a Joke


(Photo: Gretchen Ertl, AP Images for New England College of Business)

American colleges are fraught with petty politics and bad economics

For USA TodayGlenn Reynolds writes: As college graduates around the country fling their caps into the air, college and university administrators are ending the year in a less positive state. It has been a tough year for higher education in America, and it’s not especially likely that next year will be a lot better. As an industry, higher education is beset with problems, problems that for the most part aren’t being addressed.

[Glenn Reynolds‘ book The New School: How the Information Age Will Save American Education from Itself is available at Amazon]

One set of problems is economic. With tuitions climbing, and graduates’ salariesstagnant, students (and parents) are becoming less willing to pay top dollar. This has caused some schools — especially expensive private institutions that lack first-class reputations — to face real hardships. Yeshiva University’s bonds have beendowngraded to the status of junk. Credit downgrades have also hit several elite liberal arts colleges. Other private schools, such as Quinnipiac College, are actuallylaying off faculty. Georgetown in Kentucky cut faculty by 20%.

“If I understand college administrators correctly, colleges are hotbeds of racism and rape that everyone should be able to attend.”

— IowaHawk

Even fancy schools such as Harvard and Dartmouth have seen applications decline, with Dartmouth’s dropping 14% last year, a truly staggering number.

It’s no picnic for public institutions either. “There have been 21 downgrades of public colleges and universities this year but no upgrades,” reported Inside Higher Ed. It’s gotten so bad that schools are even closing their gender studies centers, a once-sacrosanct kind of spending. Read the rest of this entry »

[VIDEO] Andrew Breitbart Flashback: ‘Take on the Bullies on the Playground’

On a personal note, Andrew Breitbart is one of the reasons punditfromanotherplanet exists. I read his book, two or three years ago, and it ignited a series of events and discoveries that inspired and activated me–like a lot of people exposed to Andrew’s magnetic, generous personality–it’s not passive reading, it’s a call to join the revolution, and raise some hell. If you’ve not read it yet, it’s available as an ebook now, too.

From the book’s manic introduction, to its updated conclusion (to include the Weiner episode and crazy press conference) it’s a wild ride. He’d just taken down Anthony Weiner, and had to defend his own reputation against a breathtakingly vicious smear effort. Andrew emerged–with style–stronger and more victorious, principled, and fair, than any of his critics would have imagined.

A rich narrative of this adventure is archived here. Then, this morning, I stumbled on this link at Instapundit, to this video:

Sunday, October 27, 2013,  writes:

…may be the best interview of Andrew I’ve ever seen.

And it’s as relevant, if not more so, now as it was back then.

There’s so much in it, listen to it all.

At 8:45 Andrew describes highly-credentialed mainstream journalists as “the most arrogant bastards you could possibly meet in your entire life.” Sounds about right. Maybe understatement.

Two years later Andrew died.



Read the rest of this entry »

Beware those crazy people who still believe in the Constitution: Defense Department Education Material

Defense Department Education Materials Warn of ‘Extremists’ That Speak of ‘Individual Liberties, States’ Rights, and How to Make the World a Better Place.’ “The guide is reportedly authored by the Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute, a Defense Department-funded diversity training center. Further, the documents cite the left-leaning Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) when identifying ‘hate groups.’”

via Instapundit 

The Great Disconnect


ROSS DOUTHAT: The Great Disconnect:

This January, as President Obama began his second term, the Pew Research Center asked Americans to list their policy priorities for 2013. Huge majorities cited jobs and the economy; sizable majorities cited health care costs and entitlement reform; more modest majorities cited fighting poverty and reforming the tax code. Down at the bottom of the list, with less than 40 percent support in each case, were gun control, immigration and climate change.

Yet six months later, the public’s non-priorities look like the entirety of the White House’s second-term agenda. The president’s failed push for background checks has given way to an ongoing push for immigration reform, and the administration is reportedly planning a sweeping regulatory push on carbon emissions this summer. Meanwhile, nobody expects much action on the issues that Americans actually wanted Washington to focus on: tax and entitlement reform have been back-burnered, and the plight of the unemployed seems to have dropped off the D.C. radar screen entirely.

via Instapundit 

Robert F. Kennedy Jr.: Anti-Vaccination Crackpot

Robert F. Kennedy Jr…. attorney, a radio host…environmental activist...also, as it happens, a full-blown anti-vaccination conspiracy theorist.


And I do mean full-blown.

“RFK Jr. has a long history of adhering to crackpot ideas about vaccines, mostly in the form of the now thoroughly disproven link to autism. He’s been hammering this issue for a decade now, and his claims appear to be no better and no more accurate now than they were when he first started making them.”

Contrary to reputation, the Kennedys aren’t particularly bright.

via Instapundit  & Slate

Are Savages Noble?


Title page of Philosophical Transactions of th...

“It may astonish you readers, as it initially astonished me,” Diamond writes, “to learn that trench warfare, machine guns, napalm, atomic bombs,

artillery, and submarine torpedoes produce time-averaged war-related death tolls so much lower than those from spears, arrows, and clubs.” So how can this be? Because “state warfare is an intermittent exceptional condition, while tribal warfare is virtually continuous.”

This shouldn’t be so astonishing, really. Plus:

A 2012 study in The Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B noted that the “anthropological record indicates that approximately 85 percent

of human societies have permitted men to have more than one wife.” Yet in modern times normative monogamy has become dominant around the

globe, increasing social peace by reducing competition among men. The researchers further noted, “Compared to monogamous societies, polygamous cultures see more rape, kidnapping, murder, assault, robbery, fraud, child neglect and child abuse.”

It is not too far of a stretch to think that although societies practicing marital monogamy are historically fewer in number, their comparatively stronger social solidarity has helped them out-grow and out-compete polygamous competitors. And the spread of monogamy has plausibly contributed to the lower levels of violence in the modern societies.

That shouldn’t be so surprising either.

via Instapundit 

Tomorrow’s News, Today

Top IRS official will invoke 5th Amendment. “A top IRS official in the division that reviews nonprofit groups will invoke the 5th Amendment and refuse to answer questions before a House committee investigating the agency’s improper screening of conservative nonprofit groups. Lois Lerner, the head of the exempt organizations division of the IRS, won’t answer questions about what she knew about the improper screening — or why she didn’t disclose it to Congress, according to a letter from her defense lawyer, William W. Taylor III. Lerner was scheduled to appear before the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday.” She’s lawyered-up, and not just with any lawyer, either.

UPDATE: “Look forward to reading tomorrow’s pieces explaining how GOP is overplaying hand by pointing out that Lerner is pleading 5th.” No scandal here — she just doesn’t want to talk because telling the truth might incriminate her…

via Instapundit

5 Facts About Guns, Schools, And Violence


via Instapundit–via Reason TV

Violence in Tahrir Square: Not What Democracy Looks Like

THIS IS NOT WHAT DEMOCRACY LOOKS LIKE: Take a look at this disturbing and tense video of mob violence in Cairo when Islamists and secular activists effectively went to war with each other in Tahrir Square. There are no cops in this video, nor are there any women. (Thanks to Jeffrey Goldberg and MEMRI.)

Instapundit » disturbing and tense video of mob violence….