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#Baltimore, a Great Society Failure

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Rich Lowry writes:

…President Obama doesn’t have the slightest idea how to fix Baltimore. His solutions fall back on liberal bromides going back 50 years. Dating back to the Kerner Commission after the riots of the 1960s, the Left’s go-to solution to urban problems has been more social programs. Since then, we’ve gotten more social programs — and just as many urban problems.

“Officials raised property taxes 21 times between 1950 and 1985, channeling the proceeds to favored voting blocs and causing many homeowners and entrepreneurs — disproportionately Republicans — to flee. It was brilliant politics, as Democrats now enjoy an eight-to-one voter registration advantage.”

— Steve Hanke and Stephen Walters of Johns Hopkins University, in the Wall Street Journal

Exhibit A is Baltimore itself. The city hasn’t been “neglected.” It has been misgoverned into the ground. It is a Great Society city that bought fully into the big-government vision of the 1960s, and the bitter fruit has been corruption, violence, and despair.

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“To counterbalance the taxes, they note, developers need to be lured to the city with subsidies, and the developers, in turn, contribute to politicians to stay in their good graces. This makes for fertile ground for the city’s traditional corruption.”

[Read the full text here, at National Review Online]

We don’t know all the facts surrounding Freddie Gray’s tragic death. But as a general matter, it is easy to believe that the Baltimore police are corrupt, dysfunctional, and unaccountable — because most of the Baltimore government is that way.

[Also see – Riot-Plagued Baltimore Is a Catastrophe Entirely of the Democratic Party’s Own Making]

This is a failure exclusively of Democrats, unless the root causes of Baltimore’s troubles are to be traced to its last Republican mayor, Theodore Roosevelt McKeldin, who left office in 1967. And it is an indictment of a failed model of government.

The city has been shedding jobs and people for decades, including in the 1990s when the rest of the country was booming. Read the rest of this entry »

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BREAKING: In Wake of Scandal, Fraternity Members To Undergo Racial Sensitivity Hazing

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EVANSTON, IL—In the wake of a controversial video depicting two individuals in the fraternity’s University of Oklahoma chapter leading a racist chant, Sigma Alpha Epsilon officials instituted a new national policy Wednesday requiring all members to undergo mandatory racial sensitivity hazing.

“Effective immediately, pledges nationwide will engage in a hazing program designed to combat racially insensitive behavior by requiring them to pound a shot of pure grain alcohol for every one of their personal prejudices until they puke.”

Effective immediately, pledges nationwide will engage in a hazing program designed to combat racially insensitive behavior by requiring them to pound a shot of pure grain alcohol for every one of their personal prejudices until they puke, read a statement released by the organization, which also reveals that the undergraduates must participate in a frank group discussion regarding the hurtful effects of discrimination after being blindfolded, stripped naked, and forced to stand in the campus quad for an entire night.

“We take these infractions extremely seriously, and if our members fail to properly memorize and recite the major provisions of the Civil Rights Act while tied together in a dark closet, they will be urinated on by every senior fraternity member present.”

Make no mistake: We take these infractions extremely seriously, and if our members fail to properly memorize and recite the major provisions of the Civil Rights Act…(read more)

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Juan Williams speaks out against the ‘staggering amount blind hatred directed at black conservatives by liberals’

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There’s two things I really admire about Juan Williams.

1. Though I disagree with Juan 85% of the time (his feisty support of Obamacare, his reliable defense of Team Obama’s foreign policy, and his stubborn loyalty to the Administration’s policies in general, can be exasperating to watch) to his credit, Juan Williams does not have a double standard when it comes to  intolerance, and doesn’t hesitate to call it out. Unlike a lot of news talk show hosts, and guests, he doesn’t indulge in fake outrage.

2. Juan Williams has unusually good taste in neckties. Contrary to Blake Gopnik’s complaint about the sorry state of neckwear among political commentators these days, I believe Williams is the juanWunder-appreciated winner here. True, most of the time Juan’s ties are not noteworthy. But every once in a while, he’ll appear on a talk show with a necktie so unique, so well-coordinated , so exquisite, I’ll find myself thinking, “man, that’s a nice necktie”. I’ve even tweeted Juan to say so. Sure, it may seem trivial. But man with wrong opinions, but good taste in neckwear, is hard to hold a grudge against.

This is from Hot Air. I’ll leave the commentary to Ed Morrissey, you can see it in the original post, here’s Juan’s main message:

“There is a disgraceful double standard amongst liberals, particularly those in academia, in the hatred they direct at black conservatives.

We saw this last April when the conservative neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson was forced to step down as a Commencement Speaker for Johns Hopkins University (where he ably served as the head of pediatric neurosurgery).

Liberals on the Hopkins campus mobilized against Carson because he criticized President Obama’s health care reform law and said that he opposed gay marriage.

I am not a conservative but I have spoken out for years against the staggering amount blind hatred directed at black conservatives by liberals.

Read the rest of this entry »


Chinese Kids Know Their Smokes

Nearly nine out of 10 Chinese children aged 5 and 6 can identify at least one cigarette brand, and roughly one out of five say they expect to smoke when they grow up.

Students posed with cigarette models made from waste paper during a campaign ahead of the World No Tobacco Day in Handan, Hebei province, in May.

Students posed with cigarette models during a campaign ahead of the World No Tobacco Day in Handan, Hebei province, in May.

Brittany Hite reports: Those are some of the breathtaking results of a recent study by Johns Hopkins University on the effects of tobacco marketing on children in low- and middle-income countries.

The survey, which questioned 396 children Jialing town in Qi County, Shanxi province, found that 71% of Chinese 5- and 6-year-olds had someone who used tobacco in their household while 86% could identify at least one cigarette brand – higher than survey counterparts in Brazil, India, Nigeria, Pakistan or Russia.

The researchers said they chose Jialing, a small town in China’s northwest, rather than a place like Beijing or Shanghai because they thought it would be representative of what a typical child in China might see. Previous surveys have foundsmoking rates to be higher in the Chinese countryside than they are in cities.

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Ben Carson: MLK would be alarmed by black-on-black violence, lack of family values

Martin Luther King giving his address at the Lincoln Memorial, Washington,DC, Aug. 28, 1963.

Martin Luther King giving his address at the Lincoln Memorial, Washington,DC, Aug. 28, 1963.

It is hard to believe that 50 years have elapsed since the famous “I have a dream speech” of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on the Mall in Washington. I was an 11-year-old child in Detroit languishing in the midst of poverty, but very interested in the strides that were being made in the civil rights movement.

I was the only black kid in my seventh-grade class and over the previous two years had risen from the bottom of the class to the top. My mother had forced us to read, which had a profound positive effect on both my brother Curtis and myself. I was quite optimistic that things were getting better for black people in America.

Read the rest of this entry »