Sunday assorted links

1. “British people are second only to China in how much they want the government to control the internet, according to this survey.

2. New Zealanders worry about their country’s pristine nature, given the onslaught of tourism and globalization.  By the way, the NZ election results shows how proportional representation can be a bad system when the checks on nutty party opinion are otherwise weak.  Imagine Winston Peters holding the balance of power, and perhaps not even being the nuttiest candidate in the race.  This time, the Maori Party went to zero seats, the semi-libertarian ACT won one seat.  NYT report here.

3. “…a school’s participation in the NCAA Tournament is associated with a 30% increase in binge drinking and a 9% increase in self-reported drunk driving by male students at that school.

4. Ferroequinologists: India has a bunch of them.  Recommended.

5. ESPN profile of Hou Yifan.  And chess grandmaster Lev Alburt advises the financial community in NYC.

6. Political correctness also comes from the Right.


That internet regulation post is confusing me. It starts by showing a table and declaring that "The survey, carried out for the BBC World Service, found that 53% of the 1,001 Brits polled said the internet should be regulated."

But then it says "They were asked to respond to the statement 'The internet should never be regulated by any level of government anywhere.'"
it then shows the results of that question and the graph clearly shows 53% in the UK "strongly agree" that there should be zero regulation.

That's the exact opposite of the lede which says 53% say there should be regulation.

6. There is no such thing as a DINO. The other party seems to have no urge to create wedge issues which divide themselves. They may disagree, but no one with fanfare or agony has to declare themselves an ex-Democrat.

It is really amazing, apart from which wedge issue in which year, that the Republicans did not spot this as an unfortunate dynamic. Instead they reveled in it, until:

79% of Republicans say Trump is taking the GOP in right direction, but only 29% of Americans hold a favorable view of the GOP.

That's what happens when you divide down, then divide again, with wedge after wedge.

It is not that the other party doesn't want to wedge themselves, it is that the media will not wedge them. The media will not ask a single Democrat a single tough question that might cause embarrassment. Every campaign they will come out and ask Republicans about abortion and evolution. But they will not ask Hillary about partial-birth abortion. Or abortion at all if they can help it. They will not ask tough questions about race. Until they thought transsexuals were a winning issue, they did not ask Democrats if they thought a man with a penis was actually a woman.

The Democrats can hold together because there is no pressure on them at all. That is not true for the Republicans. There are plenty of issues which do divide Democrats - they continue to offer nothing to Blacks for instance in what must be the most cynical exploitation of any political issue in America. But you will never hear about them.

Trump's exploitation the white working class for votes while he tries to take away many of their health insurance policies and cut taxes on the wealthy is at least as cynical.

Not even on the same scale.

Republicans complain about things that happen places we have never heard of, like Evergreen, or places that have been fringe since the 1960s, like Berkeley. The complain about bathroom fantasies of their own invention.

Meanwhile the President of the United States uses his bully pulpit to divide America right down the center, to make it less United, less powerful.

Putin has probably broken out the good stuff for toasts tonight.

"Republicans complain about things that happen places we have never heard of, like Evergreen"

As opposed to places we've all heard of, like Fergusson, Missouri.

Had you really?

Heard of Fergusson, Missouri, before it became a "look there!"

Hey SMFS, remember when Team Red was calling the stimulus bill passed by the Dems in 2009 the 'porkulus' bill?

Trump as usual blows that shit away. Hypocrite this:

I mean, literal bribes to the states/senators of AK, ME, AZ, and KY. The ones holding up Graham Cassidy. LOL.

I'm not a Democrat, but when I vote, I vote Democrat. Also, Republicans are all evil. But again, NOT a Democrat.

Again, fully 1/3 of voters are independent.

Many are ex-Republicans driven out by demands of extremism. And yeah, when the choice is extremism, especially on the Trumpian scale, they might vote Democrat.

"Ferroequinologist" is a cute word.

A certain K. Marx was also interested in railways in India. He wrote of it at the time. Although often wrong, Marx got this right and saw this for what it was.

By the way, the NZ election results shows how proportional representation can be a bad system when the checks on nutty party opinion are otherwise weak.

Sayeth a close professional associate of Bryan Caplan.

I call it “patriotic correctness.” It’s a full-throated, un-nuanced, uncompromising defense of American nationalism, history and cherry-picked ideals. Central to its thesis is the belief that nothing

What it actually is is not thinking like Cato or Bryan Caplan.

6. From the link: "But conservatives have their own, nationalist version of PC, their own set of rules regulating speech, behavior and acceptable opinions. I call it “patriotic correctness.” It’s a full-throated, un-nuanced, uncompromising defense of American nationalism, history and cherry-picked ideals. Central to its thesis is the belief that nothing in America can’t be fixed by more patriotism enforced by public shaming, boycotts and policies to cut out foreign and non-American influences." Duh. Will Trumpsters sacrifice football and basketball for loyalty to Trump? Duh.

Trump stepped on his own .. toe .. with that one.

One of the better replies:

That such things go under the Sports Illustrated banner show the magnitude of the error.

Far more likely Trump guaranteed his reelection. Patriotism is super popular "reform" movements succeed only to the extent they co-opt that popularity.

"79% of Republicans say Trump is taking the GOP in right direction, but only 29% of Americans hold a favorable view of the GOP."

Hello Mr Vanishing Republican

The non-vanishing Democrats have managed to win control of the House of Representatives twice in the last quarter century. Their position in state legislatures is as bad as it has been in the last 90 years.

I am an ex-Republican independent. It would be fine with me if more people de-registered on both sidesm

Currently we lead.

Yay, non-team.

"I am an ex-Republican independent."

Nobody believes you.

Actually, given that fully a third of voters are independent, more people should believe it.

Because I think you all are complete morons who never pay attention to anything that I post

I agree that the President should be trying to pull us together as opposed to dividing us.

But, Steph deciding to snub the invitation is not "bringing us together," either.

They should both just grow up a bit.

Possibly, but I think the most American position is to respect everyone who quietly, respectfully, took a position of conscience. That includes the one Steeler who came out to stand for the Anthem, and those who took a knee.

(I also wonder how many people didn't come up through kids' sports, and don't know the meaning of "take a knee" as taught to 8 year olds. It is a moment of respect for another player's injury. It is other-focused. It is a break from rivalry.)

Of course, Trump will respond by daring the players to boycott. The Korean crisis is one thing, but the possibility of a lost NFL season is altogether different. Will the owners turn against the players and side with Trump? Will the owners side with the players in order to avoid a lost season?

The idea that "patriotism" is "just" political correctness, like allegiance to feminism or the latest socialist, multiculti morality is exactly why there's a culture war.

It is exactly the fight between those who think that the majority of traditional views were right and just and were displaced by insane radicals at elite institutions over half a decade. The idea -- coming from many libertarians who are social autistics -- that these things are just the same belief in the central state correctly shows why they are and will remain irrelevant. The rest of us will decide which side deserves to be fought for.

"half a decade" should be "half a century"

It seems there are a greater number of ways to behave incorrectly, politically, in the eyes of leftists. Identity politics causes such instances of walking on eggshells to proliferate, whereas with nationalism you only avoid impugning the good name of the US, or to a lesser degree law enforcement. Another perspective is of course the idea that since most people - even most Democrats - by default and acculturation don't think to malign their nation at large or criticize police/military, the PC of the left is more salient, as it's relatively novel, constantly updated, and so easier to run afoul of.

by default and acculturation don’t think to malign their nation at large or criticize police/military, the PC of the left is more salient, as it’s relatively novel, constantly updated, and so easier to run afoul of.

Not too long ago The Dixie Chicks were almost driven out of business because they criticized Bush's invasion of Iraq.

Less than a year ago a man wins the Republican nomination after claiming the Bush's lied about WMD's and the Iraq invasion was a fraud.

Not too long ago The Dixie Chicks were almost driven out of business because they criticized Bush’s invasion of Iraq.

LOL yeah, it got so bad, their next album debuted at number one.

I hate it when Republicans play class warfare. What does it matter if they had a #1 hit afterwards?

Anyway did Charles Murray, Ann Coulter or Milo have to go on food stamps?

Wow. At no point in that comment did you have anything close to a coherent response to my destroying your point, or anything I wrote. I am not a Republican. Murray, Coulter, and Milo have nothing to do with this. The Dixie Chicks did not go on food stamps.

Why not just type wHAEDHDHHREHAEHFHFGhehwerhw if you're going to post so pointlessly?

Search Twitter for "if you think I served"

Many have Tweeted the same message:

"I'm a vet and if you think I served so football players could take a knee during the anthem to protest injustice, you'd be right #TakeAKnee"

What is going on? Why A WWE character is attacking an NFL character? They don't belong to the same league.

And NFL character? You mean the assertion that a person should lose their job because of their political stances.

How long ago was it were people crying about a crises of political correctness because a C-level pseudo-intellectual had a talk that was cancelled or rescheduled at a university and a comic who opined about the merits of receiving blowjobs from 14 year old boys had a gig cancelled while scoring a major book deal?

We all know that's not why

So it's ok to inhibit speech if someone is advocating having sex with teens....but not if they support Nazism or mock individual transgendered people? Just tell us what you want the rules to be and then stick to them, if you can.

“I’m a vet and if you think I served so football players could take a knee during the anthem to protest injustice, you’d be right #TakeAKnee”

I'm sure you've personally tweeted it yourself, Mr. Veteran.

There are ferroequinologists and then there are ferroequinologists...

#6) Not sure if Tyler published this link today to make it easy to refute. Original article was published last December. Given NFL reaction today to Trump's tweets, it doesn't appear that any player is in any danger of losing their job for not standing during national anthem, as well they shouldn't be. (Most players and coaches agree that Kaepernick is having trouble finding a team due to his skills, or lack thereof, rather than his politics, and the league and coaches' support for players against Trump's tweets would appear to confirm that.) In contrast, the Yale professors did lose their jobs over the Halloween costume comments, the Evergreen State professor lost his job, the Google developer lost his job and, while Laura Kipnis didn't lose her job, she did have to fight off Title IX violation charges.

Kipnis and the Evergreen St professor are actually liberals (maybe the Yale professors too??), showing that left PC is so severe that even left-on-left PC is quite common now. The closest thing to right-on-right PC might be Blaze's firing of Tomi Lahren for pro-choice comments. But, Blaze is an explicitly right wing organization. Google and universities present themselves as not explictly left wing. Explicitly left wing private entities can enforce PC but, if an organization wants to get the benefits of being politically neutral (taxpayer funding, social status of a non-political entity, etc.), then it should actually be politically neutral. The reason why PC is primarily a left wing problem may be because of Conquest's Second Law: Any organization not explicitly right-wing sooner or later becomes left-wing. (Or, maybe, causality runs the other direction.)

Some of those have already been found guilty or paid penalties.

Will Trump?

"18 U.S. Code § 227 - Wrongfully influencing a private entity’s employment decisions by a Member of Congress or an officer or employee of the legislative or executive branch"

It is illegal for the president to call for any player's termination.

Yea that's the spirit. Please please please liberals don't throw your hats in with the people disrespecting the flag. I really really really couldn't stand 60 republicans in the senate.

US Flag Code: Chapter 10.176D

“The flag should never be used as wearing apparel, bedding, or drapery.”

#2, 6 better piece on the New Zealand election results for people who are not so obnoxiously full of themselves that they can actually appreciate a variety of political views:

Excellent chess links. #5 on Hou Yifan (Yoo Hou!) is quite good, she's a natural player who does not need to calculate (GM Mickey Adams of the UK is said to be another). But the link on GM Lev Alburt, who has made quite a bit of money on chess (by chess players standards) by defecting to the West early (before the other GMs got here) and wrote some books that became popular, as well as consulted with Wall Streeters, seems a bit inauthentic ("The day Stalin died was “the best day of my life,” he says. He was 7." I doubt a seven year old has these feelings, probably Alburt adopted them later).

#4 as a bus fan myself, it doesn't surprise me but these guys are quite hardcore. I would like to know proportion of singles in that group...

1. English people enjoy being collectively vindictive more than, say, the French of Spanish or Japanese, who generally prefer to personalize their nastiness (history is not an exact art, and I could be wrong, but I probably am not). This has been observable throughout recorded history. So China and England are on the collective side of governmental internet bullying, with the French or Spanish or Japanese being on the less collective side. People everywhere are bad but they are bad in different ways, which is why we have something called history. Color me unsurprised, but it is, in a way, comforting to see one's expectations fulfilled, even when one, as a decent human being, might wish those expectations would not, in fact, be fulfilled. Poor England!
4. In the epic children's saga relating the life and times of the eponymous Pigeon in "Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus" - stop reading here if you don't want spoilers - the Pigeon really really liked buses. A good lesson to draw from this book is that There is something to be said for passion in life, but we should moderate our desires if we care about other people.
6. If I have linked to 100 or so sites based on these "assorted links" than this article was in the bottom 2 per cent. Rhetorical mistakes, dialectical mistakes, and boring. One hopes the writer is usually better than this. All the words were spelled correctly, however.

As a big fan of the Bible and the great writers, I have to note that, of the 70 or so books of the Bible, and the 80 or so novels or plays of Dickens and Walter Scott and Shakespeare, not a single title is, standing alone, good advice. The closest one comes is "as You Like it" which is advice but is only good advice for some people. So, here in the outermost reaches of libertarian and libertarian-tolerating commentdom, I will give the (probably) liberal writer Mo Willems a compliment: "Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus" is good advice.

That being said, I , for one, (spoiler alert - the next words are written backwards) hearts many so gladdened and nothing cost have would bus toy fictional a on come but good is that and bus the drive to get not did book the in pigeon the bus toy safe a pigeon the bought have would I

I actually really like England - John Henry Newman wrote, or at least popularized, my favorite Latin poem in 4 words (cor ad cor loquitur), and, one day, reading Tennyson, I learned that Vergil is the first poet recorded as choosing a line he wrote as his favorite line: nec gemere aeria cessabit turtur ab ulmo (back to pigeons) the turtledove will not leave off those celestial sighs high in the elm tree

"nec gemer' aieria cessabit turtur ab ulmo" - if you happen to know Latin but don't know Russian ... that is what Pushkin sounds like in Russian (ceteris paribus)

Political correctness on the right? PERISH THE THOUGHT. Look who's coming to dinner!

I'm un-pursuaded by #6, for the simple reason that while many on the Right feel like they are not free to speak their minds in ways which conflict with the political correctness of the Left, many on the Left feel free to loudly shout down the "patriotic" correctness of the Right. In fact, from the Left, it seems a badge of honor to piss off the Right.

Though I do confess things are starting to change--mostly because the Right has realized the shell game political correctness is for the Left, and because the Right feels no longer compelled to purchase products that are infused with left-wing politics. I also suspect, as was mentioned by a smarter blogger than me, the Left will miss the civilized restraint of the Right once it's gone. Trump, in point of fact, represents the first crack in that civilized restraint--and for the Left to continue to push at this point means Trump is the best case scenario, not the worst.

So I say to the folks in the NFL--please, kneel. I'm not a sports fan anyway, and frankly I'd like to see sports coverage disappear from broadcast television and stop interrupting my viewing schedule.

You speak in the future tense, but I think it's already happened.
For most of my life it's been almost exclusively the left that was rude, uncivil, sanctimonious and arrogant. But the alt-right and the Trump base managed to outdo them in the last year and a half, by being all that plus racist, sexist and vulgar (ok, maybe minus the sanctimony). It's all trolls calling people cucks now.

The left are plenty racist, sexist and vulgar.

I enjoy the lack of self-awareness in your post.

It's a "badge of honor" for the left to annoy the right, but "free speech" rallies are merely exercising a Constitutional right. Can't make this up, folks.

#3) Does this mean that the federal government should award cash prizes to schools that make the NCAA Tournament, i.e., when a school has a larger demonstrated need to deal with alcohol problems, should the federal government provide correspondingly larger aid to help with those problems? If not, then please explain the criteria you would use in evaluating need-based aid, say aid to people that face larger out-of-pocket medical expenses as a result of choosing not to purchase health insurance in advance of developing medical conditions and aid to people with large college debt as a result of poor choices regarding majors vs. employment prospects corresponding to those majors.

1. Net neutrality is regulation. Surveys tend to depend on how the question is framed and the language used.

2. A sculpture made on manure defecating into a glass of water. Ha! That must be a nasty sight and smell for tourists.

4. Riding the iron horse as a hobby. Why not. Though I might prefer to be an aluminequinologist.

6. If I were a fan in a NFL stadium, I would take a knee in solidarity. If I attended Berkley, I would listen to Ann Coulter or Milo speak and probably wander off due to boredom. If I were an alumni of Harvard, I would withhold donations because Chelsea Manning has just as much right to recognition as the warmongers who matriculated from that institution. As an American, I have the right to do each of these. I love this country for that reason.

#6: Oddly, Southerners tend to be patriotic about the flag, very "thank you for your service," etc. The same whose local statuary and ancestor worship apparently make them guilty of treason-by-association.

It really seems like the left wants America to discard its customs and have no origin story at all. I guess there are plenty of nations that live without one, though America seems awfully big and unwieldy for that to work.

It will be kind of funny if sentiment for Old Glory survives only in pockets of the South.

Well, the (activist and PC) left seems to think that America's origin began sometime around the 1950s or 1960s with the Civil Rights movement or, at least, their behavior seems indistinguishable from someone that thinks that. Anything before that time was the Dark Ages of racism and sexism. That's why the left dismisses the Declaration and original Constitutional text as the mere musings of a bunch of dead, white, male slaveowners. That's also why they feel the need to refer to every issue they care about as, "X is the civil rights issue of our time," and can only think in terms of identity politics and privilege. That is their model for how one does politics: activists demonstrate in the streets, take over buildings and roads, etc. to raise awareness about mainstream society's deeply ingrained prejudices. Due process, checks and balances, coherent philosophy informed by centuries, rather than decades, of human history --- all unimportant.

Because this world view requires viewing everything that happened before Civil Rights as irreparably tainted by racism, the left has no appreciation --- they're not allowed to show appreciation --- for the central role of Rule of Law, Limited Government, and other Enlightenment ideals played in creating the free and prosperous society that we all enjoy. In their view, everything that is good could only have come about because left wing activists took to the streets to demand it. That's why they are unconcerned that PC principles might one day be used to suppress their own speech. They don't view free speech as deriving from faithful adherence to the Constitutional principles. Rather, they act as if they believe that they will always be able to protect their own free speech simply by demonstrating in the streets to demand it. They don't stop to think that those demonstrations only work, and only are allowed, if society at large remains committed to the same Enlightenment ideals that they dismiss as sorely outdated.

They envision themselves as the one with the boot, not the one with the face. Until you credibly prove otherwise, don't expect it to stop. It's like all those lectures you mother gave about conflict resolution between you and the schoolyard bully, and then finally you take you fathers advice and beat him in a fight and then the harassment finally stops.

I haven't seen a plan from the right that convinces me they get that. We are dealing with barbarians, you need barbarian tactics. The left will not reform itself because you ask them too. Anytime you point out how its hurt them they just look at the demographic projections and say, "our time is coming."

American bullies must be wimps. I sent a couple local bullies to the school nurse and the harassment certainly didn't stop.

It's possible to form a syncretism between the liberal enlightenment ideas of Americas founding and the civil rights movement. They all ultimately stem from the same source. You don't have to insist America was perfect on day one, to embrace the founding concepts, AND the continuous struggle to overcome it's flaws and achieve "a more perfect union". The civil rights movement was a struggle for freedom, largely rooted in individualist ethnic and morality, that draws on the ideas that America was based on. You don't have to cede it to the left, or allow them to claim that those ideas inevitably lead to racism, so socialism is the only way. You don't have to let them own the concept of civil rights or racial equality.

#6, Neither side can make rules with legitimacy anymore, and can't come together to have a broad agreement. This will end well.

#6 is very interesting. I think what''s going on here is that we have been emerging from a time of very heavily enforced patriotism, due to the 9/11 attacks and the Iraq war. Especially because the Iraq war did not go well, there are many people who are still basically in living in a defensive nationalistic mindset, believing that the country is surrounded by terrible enemies trying to destroy it, and therefore anyone who isn't rallying in defense of the flag is a damned traitor. When you're "at war" there's much more urgency to the idea of national loyalty. Moreover, some people LIKE that nationalistic feeling - they like the sense of social unity that prevails in a time of threat, and they want to maintain it. So they will kind of hype the sense of external threat and attempt to enforce loyalty norms more strongly to keep it going. And then because the sense of external threat is fading, they will do it more aggressively and more urgently to maintain the loyalty norm. So it kind of makes sense that as we emerge from the post-9/11 period and the threat of terrorism recede that the right would get MORE hysterical in defense of nationalist values rather than less.

But don't forget, it was just a short time ago that it was the Confederate flag we all had to respect.


"By the way, the NZ election results shows how proportional representation can be a bad system when the checks on nutty party opinion are otherwise weak.  Imagine Winston Peters holding the balance of power, and perhaps not even being the nuttiest candidate in the race."

While I agree that proportional representation can result in less than ideal outcomes, it is a bit of a stretch to use New Zealand's reasonably functional system as an example of the pitfalls.

New Zealand requires that political parties gain either 5% of the vote or win an electorate to gain representation in parliament, which effectively locks out the lunatic fringe.

Winston Peters, as much as I personally dislike him and his policy outlook, is a fairly conventional populist politician with a legitimate and consistent base of support. Would New Zealand be a better place if he retired? Sure. Does his continued career some sort unmitigated catastrophe? No. For a start he has been a fixture in new Zealand politics for decades has already been part of two functional governing coalitions.

Overall, New Zealand's political problems are pretty mild.

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