Friday assorted links


#5 Hard to beat this response :

I have heard of this "ACLU" of which you post.

Aside from forcing (mostly through court diktat, not democratically-elected legislatures) the government and its police powers to take sides in cultural, racial and religious controversies, I cannot think of anything it accomplished.

The tweet tells me today they're either a gaggle of annoying, woke scolds or a bunch of lunatics.

Same old ACLU, founded by communist to bring down the USA and still working hard to do that.

What exaclty happened to the ACLU? They went kinda nuts lately.

I'm usually 70/30 for supporting/not supporting the ACLU's stances on issues. Nothing is ever 100% so it's a good enough batting percentage for me. I'm most happy about the recent win regarding laptop searches at the border. Now ICE needs reasonable suspicion instead of "because they felt like it." 4th amendment for the win. NH's criminalization of speech critical of government also got a much deserved smack down.

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Oh, that's easy to answer: all their staffers were in college in the US in the last 10 years.

5. Grandpa's ACLU defended the rights of Nazis to march in Skokie because they knew that when the powers-that-be want to take away rights, they start with unpopular groups, and then that sets a precedent. Those particular Nazis got their stupid march and then they were never heard of again.

Someone needs to say it: the old ACLU would have defended Bill Cosby. Because convicting one evil guy was not worth the price of gutting the Fifth Amendment. Now the precedent has been set: offer immunity to compel self-incriminating testimony, and then withdraw that immunity.

When they come for the Fourth Amendment there will be no one left to speak up. Certainly not the ACLU in any case.

5. Grandpa's ACLU defended the rights of Nazis to march in Skokie because they knew that when the powers-that-be want to take away rights, they start with unpopular groups, and then that sets a precedent. Those particular Nazis got their stupid march and then they were never heard of again.

No, they defended the Nazis because the Nazis are not a threat. They're freaks with no following and no influence. The ACLU was quite content when police forces used numchukas on anti-abortion protesters and the feminist bar went after Randall Terry and Joseph Scheidler with RICO suits because the anti-abortion movement is a threat.


Numchukas Numbskull - who are we talking about here Art? The police or the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles?!

#4 - We've obviously reached the end of the great anomaly in human development, i.e., the mid-20th century when more and more of the world's populations moved from population checks of high mortality to lowered fertility. This time with aggressive, but effective, contraception and abortion. Those within the transition were freed from the risks of promiscuous sex, those 50 years later take a less childish view of free sex and see it as only one of many life activities. It's not unlike how drinking is not as much fun after you turn legal.

"The ‘modern’ pattern is one where it is lowered fertility which keeps population in check, rather than high mortality. Different mechanisms are used, late marriage and high rates of non-marriage, various forms of controls on the numbers born alive through infanticide and abortion, and nowadays high levels of contraception."
--Chapter 8 of 'The Invention of the Modern World' by Alan Macfarlane.

In defense of land: "It was like I saw my whole future life stretching out in front of me, and I couldn't stand it."
It's not high mortality wasn't a check on the population, it's that high mortality was a defense of some kind of pagan response in the medical system, like here I am a flying nocturnal animal when I was born to work with my hands.

What we need is for the SPLC to designate both itself and the ACLU as a hate organization.

4. Vitalik Buterin: hard problems in cryptocurrency.


Proof of accuracy.

The holders of the BTC transfer from the main bitcoin block chain to a dual, private bitcoin block chain. Within the private block chain any BTC holder can designate a portion of holdings to be sent to others, or can also request that others send BTC to him/her.

For sake of clarity, let is designate these deposits and loans. The banker (instead of miner) can prove that an entire collection of transactions from one group of BTC holder to another group of BTC holders, within the dual system, is accurate to within a quarter point. That is, any other transfer vector would result in a matching accuracy greater than a quarter point. The banker proves that the two block chains can be matched with the desired accuracy using a computed interest charge swap from loans to deposits. which is minimum redundancy. Any other interest rate swap would leave a redundancy and be invalid.

Whenever any holder of a of BTC leaves the system, its records on the private block chain are erased and the holdings transferred to the main BTC block chain. The the private dual block chain is always of finite length depending upon the number of clients. If the system collapses, no party loses more than a quarter point of holdings. We will call this the bitcoin S/L bank. Each user of the bank gets a credit card statement after each interest swap. Abstract tree theory says we can do it.

Any party can, at any time, verify the set of loans and deposits used in the current interest rate swap. The bankers book are open. But fraud, on the part of the banker, is not automatic, it is a function of the bank examiner (call this a trusted miner). Users can perform their own bank examiner function off line.

It's not that its accurate to a quarter point, it's more along the lines of because its a dual system, there is no registry; you're right it's transparent. But that system cannot be finite because it is tested upon the shareholder. Bitcoin is based on a representative system, while they can send the BTC to him/her, they won't be able to change the momentum of a banking system. Banking systems can still collapse because of non-entities.

Yes, the S/L can collapse and leave a potential loss on remaining depositors of almost a quarter point. There are no real shareholders, it is a bot, bots cannot own property. Transaction costs are paid in ads, this is exactly a search engine, tuned to find an optimum match.

Merchants can have accounts, so all transactions go through a bitcoin S/L, and internal loops closed. There is the same scofflaw issue, badly selected borrowers,but it is no worse than today and can be significantly improved. Scofflaws have to be chased, merchants and customers and the S/L bot all have insurance payments to the sheriff bot.

So it remain finite because all of history is embedded in the bounded error incorporated into the bots market risk account.

In fact, if Zuck did this with Libra, he would sell S/L slots and utilize a finite block chain for inter bank transfers. Once the banks with a stake see a transaction has cleared they can reasonably agree to erase the trace. Some details need working, but here is absolutely nothing wrong with the idea and no central banks are involved, the merchants collect interest payments on heir deposits.

Real money. Money backed by the best current estimate of the velocity equations. double entry accounting has no better estimate of prices.
The best known allocation of liquidity between savers and borrowers. Otherwise known as arbitrage free fair trading. Transaction costs assumed zero, like a search engine, so even a few micro bitcoins can be on the books. No worse than all the data that is stolen from us every day. Extremely fast from merchant to S/L. Scofflaws will always exist when we are pricing uncertainty, but their effect easily restricted and insurance costs priced properly. Results in the optimum allocation of inventory across the value chain. Always reveals the most likely arrival time and place for any proposed goods price. Creates the best 2D hologram available.

Scofflaws have constants. Bots have constraints. What's this bounded error incorporated? It's not risk it's failure. Risk is variable like a algebra tree is visualized. You stop at the idea not the meaning. So risk averse, for instance, this idea of mine. This idea of mine is His.

5. Ah, but did your grandfather actually support the ACLU? Or is this a time delay effect? ACLU actions that conservatives (and the mainstream) opposed 50 years ago are now seen as mainstream. This gives a false recollection that you, or someone like you, supported them at the time. Probably not.

And in 50 years this will be true again. I hope weird pronouns will remain fringe (because they are a pain), but I think the conservatives of 50 years from now will find alternate sexualities very boring. They'll be shocked by ACLU defenses of something else new, strange, and outrageous.

That's the group's actual identity, to be ahead of what they imagine to be the curve, often in shocking or even unpleasant ways.

Sometimes they are right, but as a somewhat rag tag organization, they might be as often wrong.

This comment reveals your total ignorance regarding the nature and history of the ACLU. Basically everything you say here is wrong.

May 11, 1981 - Attorney General Edwin Meese III Calls the ACLU a "Criminals' Lobby"

Maybe you remember something different.

So someone calls you out on your ignorance and you show it by bringing up an Attorney General and the Bork nomination from the 1980’s? You just proved the point Tyler was making. I realize you’re just trolling but can you at least try a little harder? This is just lazy.

Happy Thanksgiving but the way. What was your choice of wood for smoking your bird? I went with a cherry/mesquite combo.

Maybe I'm confused. In my fairly long life I have seen conservatives complain about the ACLU continuously. Then Tyler seems to frame it as "this isn't the ACLU we loved." People buy that mood affiliation, but is it even true?

You tell me, *when* was the ACLU loved by conservatives?


I simplify my life by using mesquite for everything. Tasted good.

Of you don't have one, the dual probe food/bbq wireless thermometer is the cat's pajamas. You can be inside talking to people, and still keep an eye on temps.

Maybe he's just not into demonizing others to the extent you are. Seriously, you need to let go of all the hate it's burning you up inside.


Me: "Sometimes they are right, but as a somewhat rag tag organization, they might be as often wrong."

You: "Too much hate!"

What snowflakes!

Depending on the age of your grandfather..

"Jan. 1931 - Congressional Committee Report Finds ACLU "Closely Affiliated" with Communism"

“That's the group's actual identity, to be ahead of what they imagine to be the curve, often in shocking or even unpleasant ways.”

No, that’s completely wrong. That’s the progressive movement. Your inability to separate civil liberties from the progressive movement is one more indicator that you’re either a teenager LARPing as a Boomer or you’re ignorant enough to think “conservatives hate it sometimes that must mean it’s progressive.”

Civil liberties are discarded with abandon by both the Trumpists and Warrenites, depending on whose outgroup loses status.

The ACLU is supposed to not have an outgroup, but instead dedicate itself to pushing back on any party that threatens our civil liberties.

FWIW my grandfather and father donated every year, and I did as well up until rather recently. They’ve completely gone off the rails and I haven’t donated in several years.

Fascists have been complaining about the ACLU for decades. No, crying wolf again won't work.

As have fans of civil liberties

3. Any sports book list that doesn’t contain Ball Four or explain why Ball Four is omitted is not a serious list.

Yeah, that's problematic.

His implicit basketball list is conventional: Breaks of the Game, Telander, Axthelm, Feinstein. Personally although I respect Breaks of the Game, I didn't learn anything from it. After I finished reading it I had the exact same attitude about the NBA, the Trailblazers, Bill Walton, Billy Ray Bates, Jack Ramsay, etc. that I did before I read the book. I could've saved the time and effort and simply skipped the book. Still, a decent book.

My personal list of all-time Top 3 great basketball books, in order:

Second Wind, by Bill Russell. Slightly less than half of it is even about basketball, but the non-basketball parts are worthwhile and the basketball parts are the best I've read. He puts you inside the head of a Hall of Fame basketball player and imparts his insights into the game in a way that I have not seen in any other book.

Loose Balls by Terry Pluto. An oral history of the ABA, extremely colorful with stories that are alternately hilarious or horrifying.

Heaven is a Playground by Rick Telander. Here my list coincides with the article's.

I have heard it said that every organization that is not explicitly conservative will eventually become liberal. A think a fair corollary may be that when it does, it often becomes only liberal.

Each month I keep having a harder and harder time understanding where the ACLU actually differs from other liberal organizations these days. Which of Ms. Warren's policies do the ACLU oppose? Which of Mr. Trump's do they support?

As happened with mainline Protestants, the New Atheists, the unions and so many more, it seems like the ACLU is just another organization espousing the same shibboleths as the rest of the left liberal organizations.

I realize there are, indeed some small differences still in play, but in the main, it becomes increasingly less obvious what differentiates the many organizations that have embraced left liberalism.

This is new?

"Sep. 1, 1987 - ACLU Opposes Robert Bork Supreme Court Nomination in a Reversal of Policy"

In a word, yes.

The ACLU used to be willing to stand for viewpoint neutral civil liberties. Yet somehow we got to McCullen vs Coakley where the ACLU was supported viewpoint discrimination, banning of disfavored speech in public areas, and placing government as the arbiter of what, fully acknowledged as legal, speech would be allowed.

Likewise, the ACLU has moved from an individual understanding of the 2nd Amendment (back in the 90s) to a collective one and has recently gone so far as to endorse age discrimination for 2nd Amendment rights. In a new twist, the ACLU has stated that it will not defend the speech rights of those who are armed (e.g. Malcolm X would not be supported by the ACLU).

Certainly the amount of daylight between the ACLU and the progressive wing of the Democratic Party has been shrinking for some time. But again, in all seriousness, what exactly is unique about the ACLU compared to other social justice organizations?

It is part of what I do not totally understand. Whether it be churches, universities, or civic organizations, somehow every such organization ends up marching in lockstep on a wide range of issues and seems to forget ever more about religious conversion, classical education, or whatever cause first animated these institutions.

Remembering an old explanation here .. the ACLU is an umbrella organization of lawyers and there has traditionally been a lot of freedom for members to create projects that interested them.

As far back as my memory goes, those projects have generally been leftist and activist, but with frequent exceptions.

Does that help? There is less structure and long term strategy, and more the random actions of mostly liberal lawyers.

This is how I remember it too. They have been mostly leftist, sometimes sticking up for civil liberties.

(As I say such an organization would tend to permanently be pushing boundaries..)

Who were the police fighting along side with those numchukas, Art Deco? Leonardo, Raphael, and Donetello?


"On September 30, 1973, the ACLU became first national organization to publicly call for the impeachment and removal from office of President Richard Nixon."

The most recent big case where the ACLU parted ways with progressives was in (correctly) supporting the Citizens United decision. But they've been backtracking ever since (though without completely repudiating the position they took). At this point, I think the Institute for Justice is a far more worthy civil rights organization.

The website of the Institute for Justice states that they're really about property rights, which is certainly a part of civil rights but only a part.

Their fight against civil forfeiture is one that people from just about any political group could and should be in favor of.

I do wonder what their stance is on zoning. Does a group of homeowners have the right to set regulations on what can be built in their neighborhood? Cities and states have been starting to try to combat NIMBY-ism because zoning regulations are interfering mightily with housing markets. But these attempts are being fought against by neighborhood associations and zoning committees who claim that their property rights are being violated.

6 McCulloch on Cromwell is indeed a stunner. You'll laugh often too.

#2 makes sense to me most guys have ugly wives better to watch porn

#2 - self reported sexual activity? Maybe younger generations stopped feeling the need to lie about how much action they’re getting. There’s a boomer joke in here somewhere...

Cause nobody would believe them

3. SI list

I am a card-carrying member of the ACLU (partly because of the Skokie case), but I am embarrassed by these kinds of juvenile tweets. The only type of conversation that I wish to have at Thanksgiving is the type that is based upon the recognition that the virtue of individuals is wholly independent of their political views. A communist can be just as much of an honorable individual as a libertarian.

#2 Assortive mating takes all the fun out of trucking.

Maybe he likes trade wars because he was too coward to fight a real one.

According to Brazilian authorities, Oscar-awarded actor Leonardo DiCaprio may be the culprit of the series of unsual forest fires the South American country experienced this year.

#2. Age is conspicuous by omission from the list of controlled for variables. It would be interesting to see how much of the decline among partnered respondents would appear simply by shifting the age distribution among historical respondents to match the age distribution among partnered respondents in the more recent survey.

The age is very important. As a teen teenager I was getting goners just at the slightest thought about sex. Now in my twenties the drive wasn't that urgent but was still strong. In thirties I could perform but but much drive. In 40s.. I have to collect the documents across a week to start wanting again .... An I getting soft?

#2 does make me wonder about baseline issues.

It used to be that the cultural touchstone of peak sexual performance was the newlyweds who could not wait to have sex. People expected to have more sex married. This survived even in the free love era as people tended to expect that couples would have more trust and be more attuned to their other half leading to more and better sex.

These days, it seems like a lot of people's baseline is basically stuck in singledom. There seems to be a lot of folks who believe that the college bacchanalia is the highest frequency and most libidinous sex ever gets. This would fit with a lot of other things where it seems that people expect college mores to continue indefinitely (e.g. increased alcohol use disorder, increased demands for flexible scheduling, lower tolerance for unpleasant situations).

No idea if this thesis is correct, but I do wonder how much of life changes just because everyone's whole early life focuses on college (getting in, attending, and revisiting the friends/experiences when you get out).

That's an interesting suggestion.

When I started work after graduation it seemed natural to me to take a couple of hours off on a weekday afternoon to play tennis. Why not? I was working lots of 50-80 hour weeks anyway.

My boss, who worked far fewer hours than I did, and could advance not one sensible reason to oppose the habit, nevertheless forbad it.

It was just another reason to smile when he was eventually fired.

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