Bombs under bridges

Ireland

I remember making Nic Robertson’s mistake. It is to look at violence and to see evil, without seriously considering the underlying cause:

The IRA [Irish Republican Army] was at the forefront of the conflict [“The Troubles”] – killing, bombing, shooting and intimidating their way to influence. They had grown out of a demand for equality in Northern Ireland’s deeply bigoted society that often gave advantages to Protestants over Catholics.[1]

First, this neglects that Ireland has been an English colonial project since at least the 17th century:

The mandate for extermination [of Native Americans] anticipated similar calls for ruthless wars against a dehumanised enemy that would be heard from land-hungry colonists in southern Africa, New Zealand and Australia. It was also a reminder that the first colonisation of North America was contemporaneous with the far larger settlement of Ireland, mainly by Presbyterian Scottish immigrants. Between 1620 and 1642 120,000 colonists arrived to help undertake what Sir Francis Bacon revealing called ‘the reduction to civility’ of the Gaelic-speaking Catholic Irish.[2]

Lawrence James’ description is brief—he goes on to describe The Troubles at greater length later in his book. But nonetheless, we see crucial commonalities: The hunger for land—Lebensraum if you will—masked as a “civilizing” project, as if English Catholics (Episcopalians) of Henry VIII’s church were somehow more civilized than Roman Catholics, and carried out by Scottish Presbyterians, as if even they were somehow more civilized than Roman Catholics.

It is in that historical context that we should see Boris Johnson’s likely implausible notion of a bridge between Scotland and Northern Ireland.[3]

He called again for the link during the Conservative leadership campaign, despite engineers expressing scepticism at the idea of building such a link over waters more than 300 metres deep in places, parts of which were used by the Ministry of Defence to dump more than 1m tonnes of obsolete munitions.[4]

And it is in that historical context that we should see Ulsterist resistance to what is now being called a “frontstop,” the customs border between Northern Ireland and the rest of Britain necessary to avoid such a border between the North and South.[5]

There is no humane logic to such bigotry and the Irish, seen by the English as a “fickle, childlike race, unable to subdue their wilder passions,”[6] suffered it for centuries. It is little wonder that finally, early in the 20th century they rose up only to be lumped in with Communists and trade unions. The IRA resorted to violence to displace the colonizer and the conflict took a familiar pattern of asymmetric conflict culminating in partition and independence for the Republic of Ireland, excluding the North. But the fight for the North continued.[7]

Robertson foolishly treats Sinn Fein as a Northern Irish organization,[8] But it was in Dublin with the IRA at the beginning.[9] And the Ulster Protestants seek to perpetuate a vicious subjugation of Catholics.

Nic Robertson, “Sinn Fein surged in Ireland’s election. Here’s why that’s so controversial,” CNN, February 10, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/02/10/europe/ireland-election-sinn-fein-analysis-intl/index.html

Peter Walker, “Government ‘actively looking into’ Scotland-Northern Ireland bridge,” Guardian, February 10, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/feb/10/boris-johnson-northern-ireland-scotland-bridge-plan-being-actively-looked-into-no-10


  1. [1]Nic Robertson, “Sinn Fein surged in Ireland’s election. Here’s why that’s so controversial,” CNN, February 10, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/02/10/europe/ireland-election-sinn-fein-analysis-intl/index.html
  2. [2]Lawrence James, The Rise and Fall of the British Empire (New York: St. Martin’s Griffin, 1994), 14.
  3. [3]Peter Walker, “Government ‘actively looking into’ Scotland-Northern Ireland bridge,” Guardian, February 10, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/feb/10/boris-johnson-northern-ireland-scotland-bridge-plan-being-actively-looked-into-no-10
  4. [4]Peter Walker, “Government ‘actively looking into’ Scotland-Northern Ireland bridge,” Guardian, February 10, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/feb/10/boris-johnson-northern-ireland-scotland-bridge-plan-being-actively-looked-into-no-10
  5. [5]Daniel Boffey and Jennifer Rankin, “Boris Johnson and EU reach Brexit deal without DUP backing,” Guardian, October 17, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/oct/17/boris-johnson-and-eu-reach-brexit-deal-without-dup-backing; Daniel Boffey et al., “Boris Johnson ‘on brink of Brexit deal’ after border concessions,” Guardian, October 15, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/oct/15/boris-johnson-close-to-brexit-deal-after-border-concessions; Rory Carroll and Lisa O’Carroll, “Rival unionists accuse DUP of catastrophic Brexit miscalculation,” Guardian, October 17, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/oct/17/rival-unionists-accuse-dup-of-catastrophic-brexit-miscalculation; Peter Foster, “Brexit plan revealed: Telegraph obtains proposal Boris Johnson will send to Brussels,” Telegraph, October 1, 2019, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2019/10/01/brexit-plan-revealed-prime-minister-rolls-sleeves-send-brussels/; Conor Humphries, “Irish PM says hard Brexit would raise issue of Irish unification,” Reuters, July 27, 2019, https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-britain-eu-ireland-nireland-idUSKCN1UL280; Laurence Norman and Max Colchester, “U.K., EU Agree on Draft Brexit Deal, Paving Way for Key Vote,” Wall Street Journal, October 17, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/brexit-talks-are-dealt-a-blow-as-northern-irish-party-rejects-draft-11571294766; Kate Proctor, “Irish border after Brexit – all ideas are beset by issues says secret paper,” Guardian, September 2, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/sep/02/irish-border-after-brexit-all-ideas-beset-by-issues; James Rothwell, “DUP’s demand for a veto over deal brings talks to standstill as consent not customs becomes crucial issue,” Telegraph, October 16, 2019, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2019/10/16/dups-demand-veto-deal-brings-talks-standstill-consent-not-customs/
  6. [6]Lawrence James, The Rise and Fall of the British Empire (New York: St. Martin’s Griffin, 1994), 377.
  7. [7]Lawrence James, The Rise and Fall of the British Empire (New York: St. Martin’s Griffin, 1994).
  8. [8]Nic Robertson, “Sinn Fein surged in Ireland’s election. Here’s why that’s so controversial,” CNN, February 10, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/02/10/europe/ireland-election-sinn-fein-analysis-intl/index.html
  9. [9]Lawrence James, The Rise and Fall of the British Empire (New York: St. Martin’s Griffin, 1994).

Bernie Sanders’ mistake

Scotland

Kieran Andrews, “Nicola Sturgeon ‘would resort to court battle to secure referendum,’” Times, January 31, 2020, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/past-six-days/2020-01-31/news/nicola-sturgeon-would-resort-to-court-battle-to-secure-referendum-jglmr7d3n


Palestine

Contrary to an initial appearance of some Arab backing for Donald Trump’s “deal of the century,”[1] the Arab League unanimously rejected it.[2]

Times of Israel, “Backing Abbas, Arab League rejects Trump’s Middle East peace plan,” February 1, 2020, https://www.timesofisrael.com/backing-abbas-arab-league-rejects-trumps-middle-east-peace-plan/

Times of Israel, “Gantz vows to advance US peace plan immediately if elected prime minister,” February 1, 2020, https://www.timesofisrael.com/gantz-vows-to-advance-us-peace-plan-immediately-if-he-becomes-prime-minister/


Bernie Sanders

The move to restore superdelegates to the first ballot, pretty obviously to stop Bernie Sanders, enjoys only minority support.[3] But some of us have not forgotten 2016.[4]

I understand why Sanders trusts the Democratic Party. In a bipartisan system, he has little choice. I still think it’s a mistake.

David Siders, “DNC members discuss rules change to stop Sanders at convention,” Politico, January 31, 2020, https://www.politico.com/news/2020/01/31/dnc-superdelegates-110083

Eoin Higgins, “DNC Insiders Plot Return of Superdelegates to Stop Sanders at Convention,” Truthout, February 1, 2020, https://truthout.org/articles/dnc-insiders-plot-return-of-superdelegates-to-stop-sanders-at-convention/


  1. [1]Felicia Schwartz and Michael R. Gordon, “Trump’s Mideast Peace Plan Charts Two-State Course for Israelis, Palestinians,” Wall Street Journal, January 28, 2020, https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-set-to-release-middle-east-peace-plan-11580221616
  2. [2]Times of Israel, “Backing Abbas, Arab League rejects Trump’s Middle East peace plan,” February 1, 2020, https://www.timesofisrael.com/backing-abbas-arab-league-rejects-trumps-middle-east-peace-plan/
  3. [3]Eoin Higgins, “DNC Insiders Plot Return of Superdelegates to Stop Sanders at Convention,” Truthout, February 1, 2020, https://truthout.org/articles/dnc-insiders-plot-return-of-superdelegates-to-stop-sanders-at-convention/; David Siders, “DNC members discuss rules change to stop Sanders at convention,” Politico, January 31, 2020, https://www.politico.com/news/2020/01/31/dnc-superdelegates-110083
  4. [4]Donna Brazile, “Inside Hillary Clinton’s Secret Takeover of the DNC,” Politico, November 2, 2017, https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2017/11/02/clinton-brazile-hacks-2016-215774

Free Scotland

As I wonder how in the world I’m going to pay my taxes this year, I see one of my neighbors may have a more pressing dilemma.

There’s a bright pink notice taped to her door informing her of an arrest warrant. Assuming its veracity, she was busted for speeding and not having had her vehicle inspected (Pennsylvania has an annual vehicle inspection scheme to help keep local mechanics afloat).

From what I gather, such violations are how the local cops harass Blacks. Whites rarely face such tickets.

And it’s not like I’m the only white noticing this. Sure, I talk about all this with Blacks, but I also talk about it with whites. And a few of them have noticed at least some of what I’ve noticed. Those that grew up here are less likely to have noticed, but when I inform them of my observations, I don’t even have to explain my logic—they, too, are often horrified.


Scotland

As this issue goes online, the hour for Brexit has now passed.

Kieran Andrews, “Brexit is a boost for independence,” Times, January 31, 2020, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/scotland/brexit-is-a-boost-for-independence-njdh6zmfc

British Broadcasting Corporation, “Scottish independence: Nicola Sturgeon calls for patience over indyref2,” January 31, 2020, https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-51311288


Palestine

Jerusalem Online, “Bibi Steps Back from ‘Immediate’ Annexation Promise,” January 31, 2020, https://www.jerusalemonline.com/bibi-steps-back-from-immediate-annexation-promise/


Scottish independence redux

Scotland

In the abstract, I absolutely favor Scottish independence. But in fairness, there are reasons for skepticism: First, while Nicola Sturgeon and the Scottish National Party may indeed be able to bend the U.K. establishment into allowing another referendum, it might well, once again, fail to pass.[1] Even if it passes, there are doubts about Scotland’s ability to support itself,[2] which I think exceed those in the earlier referendum.

We are just about to find out how well Boris Johnson’s humbug about Brexit will play. I fear that Sturgeon’s is little better.

Severin Carrell and Libby Brooks, “SNP turns focus back to independence after election boost,” Guardian, December 16, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/dec/16/snp-turns-focus-back-to-independence-after-election-boost

Philip Sim, “Scottish independence: Could Scotland leave the UK and stay in the EU?” British Broadcasting Corporation December 18, 2019, https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-50813510


Buddhism

There is a new blog entry entitled, “Solipsism as intellectualism and as spiritualism.”

Alexander Wynne, “Who was the Buddha?” Aeon, December 17, 2019, https://aeon.co/essays/was-the-buddha-an-awakened-prince-or-a-humble-itinerant


  1. [1]Severin Carrell and Libby Brooks, “SNP turns focus back to independence after election boost,” Guardian, December 16, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/dec/16/snp-turns-focus-back-to-independence-after-election-boost; Philip Sim, “Scottish independence: Could Scotland leave the UK and stay in the EU?” British Broadcasting Corporation December 18, 2019, https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-50813510
  2. [2]Philip Sim, “Scottish independence: Could Scotland leave the UK and stay in the EU?” British Broadcasting Corporation December 18, 2019, https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-50813510

Tory triumph: Let the madness begin

Brexit

It’s a historic defeat for Labour,[1] not only because of the new margin in Parliament,[2] but because so many voted.[3]

I’m not sure how much attention I’ll pay to the analysis. But it appears that Labour’s manifesto was not more attractive to voters than the Tories’ certainty on Brexit.[4]

Having studied conservatism exhaustively for my dissertation,[5] if I had to boil it all down to a single word it would be this: hateful. In its various forms, conservatism hates the “other” and identifies with the powerful, utterly disdaining the weak. And this is what Britons have voted for.

William Booth, Karla Adam, and James McAuley, “U.K. election: Boris Johnson wins majority, while Jeremy Corbyn says he won’t lead another general election campaign,” Washington Post, December 12, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/uk-general-election-2019/2019/12/12/cc5ecb98-17ae-11ea-80d6-d0ca7007273f_story.html

Kieran Andrews, “UK election results: SNP landslide heralds battle over Scottish independence,” Times, December 13, 2019, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/news/uk-election-results-snp-sweep-to-landslide-victory-in-scotland-qxxjk3ss3

Jason Douglas and James Hookway, “Vote Raises New Questions About U.K.’s Future,” Wall Street Journal, December 13, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/vote-raises-new-questions-about-u-k-s-future-11576270316

Ian Graham, “In a first, Irish nationalists overtake unionists at UK election,” Reuters, December 13, 2019, https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-britain-election-nireland-nationalist-idUKKBN1YH0LK

Sam Knight, “Boris Johnson Wins, and Britain Chooses the Devil It Knows,” New Yorker, December 13, 2019, https://www.newyorker.com/news/letter-from-the-uk/boris-johnson-wins-and-britain-chooses-the-devil-it-knows

Haroon Siddique, Andrew Sparrow, and Kevin Rawlinson, “UK general election 2019: Tories secure majority as Corbyn says he won’t lead Labour into next election – live news,” Guardian, December 13, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/live/2019/dec/12/general-election-2019-uk-live-labour-tories-corbyn-boris-johnson-results-exit-poll


Armenia

As near as I have been able to determine, the resolution passed by the Senate[6] is correct. As David Fromkin puts it,

There are historians today who continue to support the claim of Enver and Talaat that the Ottoman rulers acted only after Armenia had risen against them. But observers at the time who were by no means anti-Turk reported that such was not the case. German officers stationed there agreed that the area was quiet until the deportations began.[7][8]

Zachary Basu, “Senate passes Armenian genocide bill in move likely to infuriate Turkey,” Axios, December 12, 2019, https://www.axios.com/armenian-genocide-resolution-senate-turkey-1931783f-88e2-41c8-a488-91d9049be529.html


 

  1. [1]Haroon Siddique, Andrew Sparrow, and Kevin Rawlinson, “UK general election 2019: Tories secure majority as Corbyn says he won’t lead Labour into next election – live news,” Guardian, December 13, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/live/2019/dec/12/general-election-2019-uk-live-labour-tories-corbyn-boris-johnson-results-exit-poll
  2. [2]William Booth, Karla Adam, and James McAuley, “U.K. election: Boris Johnson wins majority, while Jeremy Corbyn says he won’t lead another general election campaign,” Washington Post, December 12, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/uk-general-election-2019/2019/12/12/cc5ecb98-17ae-11ea-80d6-d0ca7007273f_story.html
  3. [3]Verity Bowman, Henry Bodkin, and Tony Diver, “General election 2019 live: Result ‘too close to call’ as voting continues – latest news,” Telegraph, December 12, 2019, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2019/12/12/general-election-2019-vote-news-exit-polls-results-live-latest/; Joe Roberts, “‘Longest queues ever’ as people stand in line around the block to vote,” Metro, December 12, 2019, https://metro.co.uk/2019/12/12/longest-queues-ever-people-stand-line-around-block-vote-11771760/
  4. [4]Haroon Siddique, Andrew Sparrow, and Kevin Rawlinson, “UK general election 2019: Tories secure majority as Corbyn says he won’t lead Labour into next election – live news,” Guardian, December 13, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/live/2019/dec/12/general-election-2019-uk-live-labour-tories-corbyn-boris-johnson-results-exit-poll
  5. [5]David Benfell, “Conservative Views on Undocumented Migration” (doctoral dissertation, Saybrook, 2016). ProQuest (1765416126).
  6. [6]Zachary Basu, “Senate passes Armenian genocide bill in move likely to infuriate Turkey,” Axios, December 12, 2019, https://www.axios.com/armenian-genocide-resolution-senate-turkey-1931783f-88e2-41c8-a488-91d9049be529.html
  7. [7]Ulrich Trumpener, Germany and the Ottoman Empire 1914-1918 (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1968), p. 203.
  8. [8]David Fromkin, A Peace to End All Peace (New York: Owl, 1989).

The paradox of Theresa May’s arguments against Scottish independence: Daily Bullshit, April 4-5, 2017

There is a new blog post up. It is refined and expanded from comments originally posted here (but now moved) in the previous issue.


Updates

  1. April 5, 2017, 1:24 pm:
    • A study published on the New York Federal Reserve blog reports, among other things, that it is much harder to find work if you are out of work.[1]

Scottish Independence

I think George Monbiot correctly captures the paradox of Theresa May’s arguments against a Scottish referendum on independence. What May alleges is good for the United Kingdom, for which we might actually read little England, with Brexit, she seems to argue, is not good for Scotland with regard to a referendum on independence.[2]

And I certainly agree that neoliberalism, as practiced in the U.K. (and the U.S.) is a humanitarian catastrophe. Finally, I think a major problem with our present system of social organization is that we have centralized too much authority in too few hands, so I favor decentralization, which leads me to sympathize with the drive for Scottish independence.

The trouble I see with Monbiot’s argument is that if we think neoliberalism is terrible, leaving the U.K. to rejoin the European Union, dominated by Germany and ordoliberalism (a less insane—which doesn’t say much—version of neoliberalism), really isn’t an answer, as we see with the northern European attitude toward southern Europe—especially Greece.[3]

George Monbiot, “Scot Free,” April 3, 2017, http://www.monbiot.com/2017/04/03/scot-free/


Uber

Alexandria Sage and Dan Levine, “Waymo targets second senior executive in Uber self-driving dispute,” Reuters, April 3, 2017, http://www.reuters.com/article/us-uber-tech-alphabet-lawsuit-idUSKBN1752LW


For-Profit Schools

James F. Peltz, Nina Agrawal, and Paloma Esquivel, “Westech College’s abrupt closure raises questions about training options,” Los Angeles Times, April 4, 2017, http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-westech-college-20170403-story.html


Unemployment

R. Jason Faberman, et al., “How Do People Find Jobs?” Liberty Street Economics, April 5, 2017, http://libertystreeteconomics.newyorkfed.org/2017/04/how-do-people-find-jobs.html


  1. [1]R. Jason Faberman, et al., “How Do People Find Jobs?” Liberty Street Economics, April 5, 2017, http://libertystreeteconomics.newyorkfed.org/2017/04/how-do-people-find-jobs.html
  2. [2]George Monbiot, “Scot Free,” April 3, 2017, http://www.monbiot.com/2017/04/03/scot-free/
  3. [3]Mark Blyth, Austerity: The History of a Dangerous Idea (Oxford, UK: Oxford University, 2013).

Theresa May to reject new Scottish referendum on independence: Daily Bullshit, March 15-19, 2017

There is a new blog post up.


Updates

  1. March 15, 3:05 pm:
    • Lyft earned a bump in ridership from Uber’s woes.[1]
    • Northern Ireland may also seek a vote on leaving the United Kingdom.[2] (Irish reunification)
    • In the wider controversy surrounding Donald Trump’s claims that Barack Obama ‘wiretapped’ him, Scott Ritter points out that transcripts appear not to have been ‘minimized’ as the law requires.[3] (Golden Showers) (text here corrected at 4:18 pm)
  2. March 16, 3:04 am:
    • Jim Geraghty catches the irony of the Left’s new-found interest in Secession.[4]
    • Lane Kenworthy thinks we can’t do much about rising male Unemployment and that it isn’t that important anyway.[5]
    • Another Muslim Ban, another court injunction against it.[6]
  3. March 16, 1:03 pm:
    • A judge has added an injunction to the restraining order (apparently these are different types of orders) already in place against Trump’s Muslim Ban[7]
    • Theresa May now wants Scots to wait for their referendum.[8]
  4. March 17, 3:14 am:
    • Intelligence committee leaders in both the House and Senate have now denied having seen any evidence supporting Trump’s wiretapping claim.[9] (Golden Showers)
    • Jonathan Turley is stupid in his defense of his objections to a rising number of rulings against the Trump administration on its Muslim ban.[10] (Muslim Ban)
  5. March 18, 1:15 am:
    • The Congress that should be on Trump’s side just isn’t buying his wiretapping claim.[11] (Golden Showers)
    • Nicholas Kristof penned an op-ed for the New York Times criticizing the allegedly Catholic Paul Ryan’s budget for its treatment of the poor[12] and James Freeman replies in the Wall Street Journal, suggesting (not entirely accurately) that Kristof’s argument places government in the role of Jesus.[13]
    • The Trump administration is appealing a Maryland court’s order blocking its Muslim Ban.[14]
  6. March 18, 1:11 pm:
    • The Department of Justice apparently responded to the House Intelligence Committee’s demand for information relevant to the Trump administration’s relationship with Russia satisfactorily.[15] (Golden Showers)
    • The BBC has a more comprehensive article on Theresa May’s decision to turn down a bid for a second referendum on Scottish independence.[16] (Scottish Independence)
  7. March 19, 1:57 am:
  8. March 19, 3:26 pm:

Scottish Independence

In my previous installment, I wrote of the effort to seek a new referendum on independence,

Suffice it to say, the United Kingdom’s Prime Minister Theresa May does not agree,[18] which makes it hard to see how this can go anywhere, but the counterargument seems to be that the onus will now be on the U.K. parliament to deny Scots their right to self-determination, which yeah, looks pretty ugly.[19] (My own skepticism[20] might rely too heavily on the dim prospects for secession movements in the U.S.)[21]

It would seem that Theresa May has decided to go with ugly.[22] But on the face of it, this would seem to support Nicola Sturgeon’s claim to have hit a “brick wall of intransigence” in trying to deal with May.[23] And that Sinn Fein’s leader is saying something similar about the British government also has to help.[24]

As to Theresa May’s suggestion that “‘now is not the time’ for a second referendum,”[25] I have an idea. How about they hold the Irish and Scottish referendums first, albeit on an accelerated timetable. That way, May (or her successor) would really know whom she’s negotiating for. Then it might be a good time (if such a thing exists) to invoke Article 50. That she is in such a rush to negotiate a departure from the European Union on behalf of people who plainly want nothing of it should be a huge red flag.

But instead, May turns this on her head: She wants Scots to see the (probably not so wonderful) deal she’s going to negotiate with the European Union before voting.[26] Which is, again, to miss the point. Scots apparently want nothing of this. And it should be up to them to decide whether they want to place their fate in May’s hands.

Guy Faulconbridge, “May to reject Scottish referendum demand – Times newspaper,” Reuters, March 13, 2017, http://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-britain-eu-scotland-may-referendum-idUKKBN16K2QG

British Broadcasting Corporation, “Scottish independence: Referendum demand ‘will be rejected,'” March 16, 2017, http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-39293513

Philip Georgiadis, “PM: ‘Now Is Not the Right Time’ for Scottish Vote,” Wall Street Journal, March 16, 2017, https://city.wsj.com/stories/3d6e5ffa-3409-4cb2-8c7d-15f5b4c4f6a1.html

Quentin Ariès, “Scotland’s Sturgeon: ‘There will be an independence referendum,’” Politico, March 19, 2017, http://www.politico.eu/article/nicola-sturgeon-there-will-be-an-independence-referendum/


Uber

Emma Hinchliffe, “Yep, Lyft gained users from #DeleteUber, and we now know how many,” Mashable, March 14, 2017, http://mashable.com/2017/03/14/delete-uber-lyft-1010data/


Irish reunification

Ian Graham and Conor Humphries, “Sinn Fein wants vote on Northern Ireland leaving UK ‘as soon as possible,'” Reuters, March 13, 2017, http://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-eu-nireland-idUSKBN16K28M


Golden Showers

There’s a mysterious naïvete that seems to expect intelligence agencies to abide by the law.

Scott Ritter, “Trump’s Wiretapping Charge Could Contain Some Explosive Truth,” Truthdig, March 14, 2017, http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/trumps_wiretapping_charge_could_contain_some_explosive_truth_20170314

Rema Rahman, “Senate Intel Leaders: No Wiretapping at Trump Tower,” Congressional Quarterly Roll Call, March 16, 2017, http://www.rollcall.com/news/senate-intel-chairs-no-wire-tapping-at-trump-tower

Karoun Demirjian and Ed O’Keefe, “Members of Congress demand cooperation from administration on Trump-Russia probe,” Washington Post, March 15, 2017, https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/is-there-an-investigationgraham-demands-answers-from-fbi-on-russia/2017/03/15/9d98c330-097a-11e7-93dc-00f9bdd74ed1_story.html

Max Greenwood, “House Intel Committee ‘satisfied’ with info DOJ gave in wiretapping probe,” Hill, March 17, 2017, http://thehill.com/policy/national-security/324599-house-intel-chairman-applauds-doj-for-turning-over-wiretap


Secession

Jim Geraghty, “Liberals’ New Separation Anxiety,” National Review, March 14, 2017, http://www.nationalreview.com/article/445752/donald-trump-liberal-resistance-left-embraces-secession


Unemployment

Lane Kenworthy, “The Trouble With Male Unemployment,” Foreign Affairs, March 14, 2017, https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/united-states/2017-03-14/trouble-male-unemployment


Muslim Ban

I’m probably not going to pay much more attention to Jonathan Turley on this issue. Actual judges just aren’t adopting his view of the matter, which seems to ignore that the Constitution is the highest law in the land and that there is ample cause to suspect that no matter how Trump dresses up his order, he is really acting out of religious bias. Whatever we think of the competence of the legal work defending these orders and whatever we think of the case law Turley thinks supports them, the emerging reality is that the courts seem to disagree with Turley when he dismisses the charge of religious bias and to disagree with Turley on the relevance of the Constitution.[27]

And as for Donald Trump claiming this judge’s order “makes us look weak,”[28] do I really have to say the obvious, that it is these Muslim ban orders that make us look pathetic? Do I? Really?

* * *

I doubt Turley read the foregoing, originally written on the 16th, but he is now pointing to five judges on the Ninth Circuit who have dissented from the decision upholding a lower court ruling on the original Muslim ban. I may not be correctly understanding what’s going on here, but it sounds like five judges who didn’t hear the case second-guessing the three (Turley says four, but I believe this includes the lower court judge) who did. Which sounds to me like not even a good example of cherry-picking. By the way, the Ninth Circuit is a huge court; even five judges is still a relatively small number. But Turley writes,

The blistering dissent showed that a significant number of Ninth Circuit judges strongly disagreed with the decision of the panel. (Some judges may have not approved of the panel decision but did not see the need for a rehearing). The strongly worded dissent belies the claim that the original executive order was legally unsustainable. To see this type of vociferous dissent in a withdrawn appeal is remarkable in itself but it also shows the depth of opposition to the panel’s decision among other judges.[29]

Really? Turley purely speculates with his parenthetical remark and in his claim that the dissent “also shows the depth of opposition to the panel’s decision among other judges.” In any event it would seem that a motion for an en banc review was denied—hence the ‘dissent.’[30] Which would seem to me to add a few judges to the score supporting the lower court order. In the absence of a better explanation, I’m calling bullshit.

Brent Kendall and Ian Lovett, “Trump’s Revised Travel Ban Blocked by Hawaii Judge,” Wall Street Journal, March 15, 2017, https://www.wsj.com/articles/hawaii-judge-blocks-trumps-revised-travel-ban-1489618057

Laura Jarrett, “Federal judges block Trump’s travel ban,” CNN, March 16, 2017, http://www.cnn.com/2017/03/15/politics/travel-ban-blocked/index.html

Brent Kendall, Justice Department Appeals Maryland Judge’s Decision to Block Trump Travel Ban,” Wall Street Journal, March 17, 2017, https://www.wsj.com/articles/justice-department-appeals-judge-s-decision-to-block-trump-s-travel-ban-1489780586

Jonathan Turley, “Five Ninth Circuit Judges File Rare Dissent Rebuking The Panel In Immigration Ruling,” March 17, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/03/17/five-ninth-circuit-judges-file-rare-dissent-rebuking-the-panel-in-immigration-ruling/


Government and the Poor

I take this up in “Government, religion, and the poor.”

Nicholas Kristof, “And Jesus Said Unto Paul of Ryan …” New York Times, March 16, 2017, https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/16/opinion/and-jesus-said-unto-paul-of-ryan.html

James Freeman, “Mere Budgetary Christianity,” Wall Street Journal, March 17, 2017, https://www.wsj.com/articles/mere-budgetary-christianity-1489780327


  1. [1]Emma Hinchliffe, “Yep, Lyft gained users from #DeleteUber, and we now know how many,” Mashable, March 14, 2017, http://mashable.com/2017/03/14/delete-uber-lyft-1010data/
  2. [2]Ian Graham and Conor Humphries, “Sinn Fein wants vote on Northern Ireland leaving UK ‘as soon as possible,'” Reuters, March 13, 2017, http://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-eu-nireland-idUSKBN16K28M
  3. [3]Scott Ritter, “Trump’s Wiretapping Charge Could Contain Some Explosive Truth,” Truthdig, March 14, 2017, http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/trumps_wiretapping_charge_could_contain_some_explosive_truth_20170314
  4. [4]Jim Geraghty, “Liberals’ New Separation Anxiety,” National Review, March 14, 2017, http://www.nationalreview.com/article/445752/donald-trump-liberal-resistance-left-embraces-secession
  5. [5]Lane Kenworthy, “The Trouble With Male Unemployment,” Foreign Affairs, March 14, 2017, https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/united-states/2017-03-14/trouble-male-unemployment
  6. [6]Brent Kendall and Ian Lovett, “Trump’s Revised Travel Ban Blocked by Hawaii Judge,” Wall Street Journal, March 15, 2017, https://www.wsj.com/articles/hawaii-judge-blocks-trumps-revised-travel-ban-1489618057
  7. [7]Laura Jarrett, “Federal judges block Trump’s travel ban,” CNN, March 16, 2017, http://www.cnn.com/2017/03/15/politics/travel-ban-blocked/index.html
  8. [8]Philip Georgiadis, “PM: ‘Now Is Not the Right Time’ for Scottish Vote,” Wall Street Journal, March 16, 2017, https://city.wsj.com/stories/3d6e5ffa-3409-4cb2-8c7d-15f5b4c4f6a1.html
  9. [9]Rema Rahman, “Senate Intel Leaders: No Wiretapping at Trump Tower,” Congressional Quarterly Roll Call, March 16, 2017, http://www.rollcall.com/news/senate-intel-chairs-no-wire-tapping-at-trump-tower
  10. [10]Jonathan Turley, “Five Ninth Circuit Judges File Rare Dissent Rebuking The Panel In Immigration Ruling,” March 17, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/03/17/five-ninth-circuit-judges-file-rare-dissent-rebuking-the-panel-in-immigration-ruling/
  11. [11]Karoun Demirjian and Ed O’Keefe, “Members of Congress demand cooperation from administration on Trump-Russia probe,” Washington Post, March 15, 2017, https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/is-there-an-investigationgraham-demands-answers-from-fbi-on-russia/2017/03/15/9d98c330-097a-11e7-93dc-00f9bdd74ed1_story.html
  12. [12]Nicholas Kristof, “And Jesus Said Unto Paul of Ryan …” New York Times, March 16, 2017, https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/16/opinion/and-jesus-said-unto-paul-of-ryan.html
  13. [13]James Freeman, “Mere Budgetary Christianity,” Wall Street Journal, March 17, 2017, https://www.wsj.com/articles/mere-budgetary-christianity-1489780327
  14. [14]Brent Kendall, Justice Department Appeals Maryland Judge’s Decision to Block Trump Travel Ban,” Wall Street Journal, March 17, 2017, https://www.wsj.com/articles/justice-department-appeals-judge-s-decision-to-block-trump-s-travel-ban-1489780586
  15. [15]Max Greenwood, “House Intel Committee ‘satisfied’ with info DOJ gave in wiretapping probe,” Hill, March 17, 2017, http://thehill.com/policy/national-security/324599-house-intel-chairman-applauds-doj-for-turning-over-wiretap
  16. [16]British Broadcasting Corporation, “Scottish independence: Referendum demand ‘will be rejected,'” March 16, 2017, http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-39293513
  17. [17]Quentin Ariès, “Scotland’s Sturgeon: ‘There will be an independence referendum,’” Politico, March 19, 2017, http://www.politico.eu/article/nicola-sturgeon-there-will-be-an-independence-referendum/
  18. [18]Andrew Learmonth, “Nicola Sturgeon to seek second referendum on Scottish independence,” National Scot, March 13, 2017, http://www.thenational.scot/news/15152259.Scotland_to_have_second_referendum_on_independence/; Tom McTague and Charlie Cooper, “Scotland pushes for independence post Brexit,” Politico, March 13, 2017, http://www.politico.eu/article/nicola-sturgeon-calls-for-second-scottish-independence-referendum/; Reuters, “‘Politics is not a game,’ says May after Scottish referendum call,” March 13, 2017, http://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-britain-eu-scotland-game-idUKKBN16K1XW
  19. [19]Tom McTague and Charlie Cooper, “Scotland pushes for independence post Brexit,” Politico, March 13, 2017, http://www.politico.eu/article/nicola-sturgeon-calls-for-second-scottish-independence-referendum/; Alastair Sloan, “If Scotland leaves, England will lose the Brexit game,” Al Jazeera, March, 2017, http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2017/03/england-big-loser-brexit-170312092648577.html
  20. [20]David Benfell, “Scottish parliament to vote on Brexit,” (Supposedly) Daily Bullshit, February 10, 2017, https://parts-unknown.org/reading/2017/02/10/scotland-parliament-to-vote-on-brexit-daily-bullshit-february-7-2017/; David Benfell, “Probably not a possible way forward for Scotland,” (Supposedly) Daily Bullshit, March 4, 2017, https://parts-unknown.org/reading/2017/03/04/probably-not-a-possible-way-forward-for-scotland-daily-bullshit-march-4-2017/
  21. [21]David Benfell, “Still evading the issues,” (Supposedly) Daily Bullshit, March 14, 2017, https://parts-unknown.org/reading/2017/03/14/still-evading-the-issues-daily-bullshit-march-8-10-2017/
  22. [22]Guy Faulconbridge, “May to reject Scottish referendum demand – Times newspaper,” Reuters, March 13, 2017, http://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-britain-eu-scotland-may-referendum-idUKKBN16K2QG
  23. [23]Nicola Sturgeon, quoted in Tom McTague and Charlie Cooper, “Scotland pushes for independence post Brexit,” Politico, March 13, 2017, http://www.politico.eu/article/nicola-sturgeon-calls-for-second-scottish-independence-referendum/
  24. [24]Ian Graham and Conor Humphries, “Sinn Fein wants vote on Northern Ireland leaving UK ‘as soon as possible,'” Reuters, March 13, 2017, http://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-eu-nireland-idUSKBN16K28M
  25. [25]Philip Georgiadis, “PM: ‘Now Is Not the Right Time’ for Scottish Vote,” Wall Street Journal, March 16, 2017, https://city.wsj.com/stories/3d6e5ffa-3409-4cb2-8c7d-15f5b4c4f6a1.html
  26. [26]British Broadcasting Corporation, “Scottish independence: Referendum demand ‘will be rejected,'” March 16, 2017, http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-39293513
  27. [27]Jonathan Turley, “Judges In Seattle and Boston Reach Opposing Opinions On Trump Executive Order,” February 4, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/02/04/108507/; Jonathan Turley, “Ninth Circuit Rejects Motion For Immediate Reinstatement Of Executive Order But Schedules Expedited Argument For Monday,” February 5, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/02/05/ninth-circuit-rejects-motion-for-immediate-reinstatement-of-executive-order-but-schedules-expedited-argument-for-monday/; Jonathan Turley, “Ninth Circuit Briefing Completed Today For Ruling On Trump Appeal,” February 6, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/02/06/ninth-circuit-briefing-completed-today-for-ruling-on-trump-appeal/; Jonathan Turley, “Ninth Circuit Deliberates Appeal Over Trump Executive Order,” February 8, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/02/08/ninth-circuit-deliberates-appeal-over-trump-executive-order/; Jonathan Turley, “Trump Says Administration Will Issue New Immigration Order Next Week and Appeal Ninth Circuit Ruling,” February 16, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/02/16/trump-says-administration-will-issue-new-immigration-order-next-week-and-appeal-ninth-circuit-ruling/; Jonathan Turley, “Executive Redux: Administration Set To Issue New Order On Immigration,” February 20, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/02/20/executive-redux-administration-set-to-issue-new-order-on-immigration/; Jonathan Turley, “Trump signs new immigration executive order,” March 6, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/03/06/trump-signs-new-immigration-executive-order/
  28. [28]Brent Kendall and Ian Lovett, “Trump’s Revised Travel Ban Blocked by Hawaii Judge,” Wall Street Journal, March 15, 2017, https://www.wsj.com/articles/hawaii-judge-blocks-trumps-revised-travel-ban-1489618057
  29. [29]Jonathan Turley, “Five Ninth Circuit Judges File Rare Dissent Rebuking The Panel In Immigration Ruling,” March 17, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/03/17/five-ninth-circuit-judges-file-rare-dissent-rebuking-the-panel-in-immigration-ruling/
  30. [30]Jonathan Turley, “Five Ninth Circuit Judges File Rare Dissent Rebuking The Panel In Immigration Ruling,” March 17, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/03/17/five-ninth-circuit-judges-file-rare-dissent-rebuking-the-panel-in-immigration-ruling/

Probably not a possible way forward for Scotland: Daily Bullshit, March 4, 2017

Scotland

In my last comment on another possible Scottish referendum on independence, I wrote

I’m unclear on the point. We already know that Scotland’s electorate opposed Brexit[1] and we have little reason to suspect that’s changed. But we also know that most Scots oppose another referendum on independence at this time,[2] which suggests rather strongly to me that one would not pass. And finally, we know that, as an entity, Scotland is effectively invisible to the European Union, that it is entirely subject to whatever Article 50 deal Britain negotiates with the Union.[3] So the only way that Scotland can negotiate access to the EU is to be independent, which its voters apparently do not want. I’m really not seeing the way forward here.[4]

Stewart Patrick answers that and more, arguing that Theresa May’s decision to pursue a “hard” Brexit may itself swing voters to support independence as negotiations proceed. He seems to think the real trick would be getting the U.K. parliament to approve the vote.[5] I am not saying he’s wrong. Let me repeat that: I am not saying he’s wrong. I don’t know that he’s right in his judgment of Scottish voters, but he makes an interesting argument.

I do think Patrick is right in his assessment that the U.K. Parliament would likely veto another referendum.[6] I’m just not seeing where British politicians have an interest in enabling Scottish independence. If Patrick has an answer to this, he isn’t saying.

Stewart M. Patrick, “The Scottish Play: Will Brexit Spell the End of a United Kingdom?” Council on Foreign Relations, March 2, 2017, http://blogs.cfr.org/patrick/2017/03/02/the-scottish-play-will-brexit-spell-the-end-of-a-united-kingdom/


Uber

Associated Press, “Uber deploys secret weapon against undercover regulators,” Minneapolis Star-Tribune, March 3, 2017, http://www.startribune.com/uber-deploys-secret-weapon-against-undercover-regulators/415356184/


Muslim Ban

Josh Gerstein, “Judge: Trump and government lawyers seem at odds over new travel ban,” Politico, March 3, 2017, http://www.politico.com/blogs/under-the-radar/2017/03/trump-lawyers-travel-ban-235675


  1. [1]Peter Geoghegan, “Scots against Brexit,” Deutschewelle, June 18, 2016, http://www.dw.com/en/scotland-plays-it-cool-over-brexit-debate/a-19326241; Peter Geoghegan, “Scotland eyes British exit,” Politico, October 12, 2016, http://www.politico.eu/article/all-eyes-on-scotland-scottish-national-party-conference-nicola-sturgeon/; Peter Geoghegan, “Scottish nationalists huddle to talk Brexit, independence,” Deutschewelle, October 12, 2016, http://www.dw.com/en/scottish-nationalists-huddle-to-talk-brexit-independence/a-36015386; Rowena Lindsay, “Scotland revives independence bid in wake of Brexit vote,” Christian Science Monitor, September 2, 2016, http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Europe/2016/0902/Scotland-revives-independence-bid-in-wake-of-Brexit-vote; MercoPress, “Scotland ‘undoubtedly’ closer to an independence referendum,” January 18, 2017, http://en.mercopress.com/2017/01/18/scotland-undoubtedly-closer-to-an-independence-referendum; Nicholas Winning, “Scotland to Consider New Independence Referendum Bill,” Wall Street Journal, October 13, 2016, http://www.wsj.com/articles/scotland-to-consider-new-independence-referendum-bill-1476363221
  2. [2]Elisabeth O’Leary, “Scottish independence vote may be decided ‘within weeks’: Sturgeon ally,” Reuters, February 5, 2017, http://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-scotland-idUSKBN15K0UA
  3. [3]Gabriela Baczynska, “European Commission says after Brexit vote: Scotland part of UK,” Reuters, June 25, 2016, http://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-eu-scotland-commission-idUSKCN0ZB0LQ; Telegraph, “Spain rejects Nicola Sturgeon Brexit plan for Scotland in seemingly fatal blow,” December 22, 2016, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/12/22/spain-rejects-nicola-sturgeon-brexit-plan-scotland-seemingly/
  4. [4]David Benfell, “Scottish parliament to vote on Brexit,” (Supposedly) Daily Bullshit, February 10, 2017, https://parts-unknown.org/reading/2017/02/10/scotland-parliament-to-vote-on-brexit-daily-bullshit-february-7-2017/
  5. [5]Stewart M. Patrick, “The Scottish Play: Will Brexit Spell the End of a United Kingdom?” Council on Foreign Relations, March 2, 2017, http://blogs.cfr.org/patrick/2017/03/02/the-scottish-play-will-brexit-spell-the-end-of-a-united-kingdom/
  6. [6]Stewart M. Patrick, “The Scottish Play: Will Brexit Spell the End of a United Kingdom?” Council on Foreign Relations, March 2, 2017, http://blogs.cfr.org/patrick/2017/03/02/the-scottish-play-will-brexit-spell-the-end-of-a-united-kingdom/

Scottish parliament to vote on Brexit: Daily Bullshit, February 7-10, 2017 (updated 3x)

Updated for

  1. the appeals court hearing on Donald Trump’s Muslim ban.[1]
  2. for more on the hearing,[2] for a rather alarming story on trust in the media,[3] for the outcome of the British parliament’s vote on Brexit,[4] for the outcome (I missed this earlier) of the Scottish Parliament’s vote on the same issue,[5] and for an article on why it’s right to call it a Muslim ban.[6] On the latter point, I’d just point to that C-5A-sized loophole about how more—an unspecified number—countries might be added later. But perhaps we could start with Indonesia. Which we probably can’t tell from Pakistan anyway.
  3. for the outcome of the hearing[7] and for the Sioux running out of legal options to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline.[8]

Scottish independence

I’m unclear on the point. We already know that Scotland’s electorate opposed Brexit[9] and we have little reason to suspect that’s changed. But we also know that most Scots oppose another referendum on independence at this time,[10] which suggests rather strongly to me that one would not pass. And finally, we know that, as an entity, Scotland is effectively invisible to the European Union, that it is entirely subject to whatever Article 50 deal Britain negotiates with the Union.[11] So the only way that Scotland can negotiate access to the EU is to be independent, which its voters apparently do not want. I’m really not seeing the way forward here.

Deutschewelle, “Scotland to hold nonbinding vote on rejecting Brexit,” February 6, 2017, http://www.dw.com/en/scotland-to-hold-nonbinding-vote-on-rejecting-brexit/a-37425380

British Broadcasting Corporation, “Holyrood votes against triggering Brexit,” February 7, 2017, http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-38880999


Dakota Access Pipeline

Steve Almasy, “Dakota Access Pipeline: Army issuing final permit,” CNN, February 7, 2017, http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/07/politics/dakota-access-pipeline-easement-granted/index.html

Ernest Scheyder and Terray Sylvester, “North Dakota tribe says running out of options to stop pipeline,” Reuters, February 8, 2017, http://www.reuters.com/article/usth-dakota-pipeline-idUSKBN15N2HP


Muslim Ban

The short version is that Trump “lost dramatically and completely.”[12]

I previously discussed my surprise over the clumsy performance of the Justice Department in defending the Trump executive order on immigration. Those concerns were magnified after the oral argument before the Ninth Circuit that was made available on YouTube. The performance by August Flentje, special counsel to the assistant U.S. attorney general, was surprisingly lackluster and seemingly ill-prepared. The shaky start that I described earlier seems now to be seismic as the Justice Department stumbles toward a ruling that can come as early as today. As Flentje observed during his uninspired argument “I’m not sure I’m convincing the court.”[13]

Jonathan Turley relies on a general rule that courts generally defer to the executive branch on national security matters.[14] So far, that seems not to be holding this time,[15] probably because, whoops:

The tendency by judges not to question the president on national security issues is rooted in the belief that the president, aided by national security advisors and the wealth of information at their disposal, is in the best position to make such decisions, said Matt Waxman, a national security law expert at Columbia University.

“But I’d argue that is a customary practice that is heavily reliant on the credibility of the executive branch,” said Waxman, who served on the National Security Council and in the State Department under President George W. Bush.[16]

One thing I would not say about the Trump administration is that it is credible.

Trump, Waxman said, “squandered a lot of that credibility” with his “wild and shifting claims about national security” and his unorthodox decision not to seek input from national security experts before rolling out the travel ban.

“I think it is quite possible and even likely the courts will not show the president the same level of deference they have shown previous presidents on national security,” he said.

Shirin Sinnar, a national security expert at Stanford Law School, echoed Waxman.

“It is a unique situation here,” she said. “We know national security agencies were sidelined, so it is hard to see how this idea of the executive branch being entitled to deference would apply.”[17]

And there is a more substantial defense of the order offered by Jonathan Hafetz.[18] Then there’s Amy Davidson’s impression, in which the government’s performance at the hearing appears truly awful.[19] Turley believes the order is defensible and he “believe[s] that the weight of binding authority on these trial courts favors President Trump,”[20] and, to say the least, this is a high-profile case, which is to say that poorly-performing lawyers will surely be embarrassed.

That Justice Department lawyers are nonetheless performing so poorly in a high-profile case catches my attention. It’s true they had been told not to defend the order by an acting Attorney General[21] who was subsequently fired[22] and therefore may have had less time to prepare a defense of the order. But in my dealings with lawyers over the years, I have become suspicious that lawyers may not always actually act in their clients’ best interests, that sometimes when they believe when to do so would be to act in the interest of justice, they may intentionally lose a case. Trump can fire an acting attorney general; I’m not so sure he’s persuaded the attorneys at the Justice Department.

By the way, I suppose I should emphasize that all this is over a temporary restraining order. In theory, Trump might still prevail at trial. But he’s surely going to have to up his game to do that.

Devlin Barrett, Brent Kendall, and Aruna Viswanatha, “Court Grills Lawyers on Donald Trump’s Immigration Order,” Wall Street Journal, February 7, 2017, https://www.wsj.com/articles/donald-trumps-immigration-action-in-courts-hands-1486491207

Joel Rubin, “Courts rarely second-guess the president on national security. But that doesn’t mean they can’t, experts said,” Los Angeles Times, February 7, 2017, http://www.latimes.com/politics/la-live-updates-9th-circuit-arguments-courts-have-been-reluctant-to-1486509412-htmlstory.html

Amy Davidson, “The Ninth Circuit and President Trump’s Lies,” New Yorker, February 8, 2017, http://www.newyorker.com/news/amy-davidson/the-ninth-circuit-and-president-trumps-lies

Jonathan Turley, “Ninth Circuit Deliberates Appeal Over Trump Executive Order,” February 8, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/02/08/ninth-circuit-deliberates-appeal-over-trump-executive-order/

Austin Wright, “Top Democrat: U.S. allies see Trump order as Muslim ban,” Politico, February 8, 2017, http://www.politico.com/story/2017/02/trump-muslim-ban-us-allies-ben-cardin-234799

Josh Gerstein, “3 key Trump mistakes that led to the travel ban court defeat,” Politico, February 9, 2017, http://www.politico.com/story/2017/02/3-key-trump-mistakes-that-led-to-travel-ban-court-defeat-234884

Richard Primus, “Will the Supreme Court Back Trump?” Politico, February 10, 2017, http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2017/02/will-the-scotus-back-trump-214763

Ariane de Vogue and Laura Jarrett, “Trump furious after court upholds block on travel ban,” CNN, February 10, 2017, http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/09/politics/travel-ban-9th-circuit-ruling-immigration


Trust in Media

It seems to me that journalists need to get on top of this. Now.

Joe Concha, “Trump administration seen as more truthful than news media: poll,” Hill, February 8, 2017, http://thehill.com/homenews/media/318514-trump-admin-seen-as-more-truthful-than-news-media-poll


Brexit

Angela Dewan and Simon Cullen, “House of Commons OKs Brexit bill,” CNN, February 8, 2017, http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/08/europe/brexit-bill-parliament-vote-article-50/index.html


  1. [1]Devlin Barrett, Brent Kendall, and Aruna Viswanatha, “Court Grills Lawyers on Donald Trump’s Immigration Order,” Wall Street Journal, February 7, 2017, https://www.wsj.com/articles/donald-trumps-immigration-action-in-courts-hands-1486491207
  2. [2]Amy Davidson, “The Ninth Circuit and President Trump’s Lies,” New Yorker, February 8, 2017, http://www.newyorker.com/news/amy-davidson/the-ninth-circuit-and-president-trumps-lies; Jonathan Turley, “Ninth Circuit Deliberates Appeal Over Trump Executive Order,” February 8, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/02/08/ninth-circuit-deliberates-appeal-over-trump-executive-order/
  3. [3]Joe Concha, “Trump administration seen as more truthful than news media: poll,” Hill, February 8, 2017, http://thehill.com/homenews/media/318514-trump-admin-seen-as-more-truthful-than-news-media-poll
  4. [4]Angela Dewan and Simon Cullen, “House of Commons OKs Brexit bill,” CNN, February 8, 2017, http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/08/europe/brexit-bill-parliament-vote-article-50/index.html
  5. [5]British Broadcasting Corporation, “Holyrood votes against triggering Brexit,” February 7, 2017, http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-38880999
  6. [6]Austin Wright, “Top Democrat: U.S. allies see Trump order as Muslim ban,” Politico, February 8, 2017, http://www.politico.com/story/2017/02/trump-muslim-ban-us-allies-ben-cardin-234799
  7. [7]Josh Gerstein, “3 key Trump mistakes that led to the travel ban court defeat,” Politico, February 9, 2017, http://www.politico.com/story/2017/02/3-key-trump-mistakes-that-led-to-travel-ban-court-defeat-234884; Richard Primus, “Will the Supreme Court Back Trump?” Politico, February 10, 2017, http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2017/02/will-the-scotus-back-trump-214763; Ariane de Vogue and Laura Jarrett, “Trump furious after court upholds block on travel ban,” CNN, February 10, 2017, http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/09/politics/travel-ban-9th-circuit-ruling-immigration
  8. [8]Ernest Scheyder and Terray Sylvester, “North Dakota tribe says running out of options to stop pipeline,” Reuters, February 8, 2017, http://www.reuters.com/article/usth-dakota-pipeline-idUSKBN15N2HP
  9. [9]Peter Geoghegan, “Scots against Brexit,” Deutschewelle, June 18, 2016, http://www.dw.com/en/scotland-plays-it-cool-over-brexit-debate/a-19326241; Peter Geoghegan, “Scotland eyes British exit,” Politico, October 12, 2016, http://www.politico.eu/article/all-eyes-on-scotland-scottish-national-party-conference-nicola-sturgeon/; Peter Geoghegan, “Scottish nationalists huddle to talk Brexit, independence,” Deutschewelle, October 12, 2016, http://www.dw.com/en/scottish-nationalists-huddle-to-talk-brexit-independence/a-36015386; Rowena Lindsay, “Scotland revives independence bid in wake of Brexit vote,” Christian Science Monitor, September 2, 2016, http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Europe/2016/0902/Scotland-revives-independence-bid-in-wake-of-Brexit-vote; MercoPress, “Scotland ‘undoubtedly’ closer to an independence referendum,” January 18, 2017, http://en.mercopress.com/2017/01/18/scotland-undoubtedly-closer-to-an-independence-referendum; Nicholas Winning, “Scotland to Consider New Independence Referendum Bill,” Wall Street Journal, October 13, 2016, http://www.wsj.com/articles/scotland-to-consider-new-independence-referendum-bill-1476363221
  10. [10]Elisabeth O’Leary, “Scottish independence vote may be decided ‘within weeks’: Sturgeon ally,” Reuters, February 5, 2017, http://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-scotland-idUSKBN15K0UA
  11. [11]Gabriela Baczynska, “European Commission says after Brexit vote: Scotland part of UK,” Reuters, June 25, 2016, http://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-eu-scotland-commission-idUSKCN0ZB0LQ; Telegraph, “Spain rejects Nicola Sturgeon Brexit plan for Scotland in seemingly fatal blow,” December 22, 2016, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/12/22/spain-rejects-nicola-sturgeon-brexit-plan-scotland-seemingly/
  12. [12]Jeffery Toobin, quoted in Ariane de Vogue and Laura Jarrett, “Trump furious after court upholds block on travel ban,” CNN, February 10, 2017, http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/09/politics/travel-ban-9th-circuit-ruling-immigration
  13. [13]Jonathan Turley, “Ninth Circuit Deliberates Appeal Over Trump Executive Order,” February 8, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/02/08/ninth-circuit-deliberates-appeal-over-trump-executive-order/
  14. [14]Jonathan Turley, “Judges In Seattle and Boston Reach Opposing Opinions On Trump Executive Order,” February 4, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/02/04/108507/; Jonathan Turley, “Ninth Circuit Rejects Motion For Immediate Reinstatement Of Executive Order But Schedules Expedited Argument For Monday,” February 5, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/02/05/ninth-circuit-rejects-motion-for-immediate-reinstatement-of-executive-order-but-schedules-expedited-argument-for-monday/; Jonathan Turley, “Ninth Circuit Briefing Completed Today For Ruling On Trump Appeal,” February 6, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/02/06/ninth-circuit-briefing-completed-today-for-ruling-on-trump-appeal/
  15. [15]Ariane de Vogue and Laura Jarrett, “Trump furious after court upholds block on travel ban,” CNN, February 10, 2017, http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/09/politics/travel-ban-9th-circuit-ruling-immigration
  16. [16]Joel Rubin, “Courts rarely second-guess the president on national security. But that doesn’t mean they can’t, experts said,” Los Angeles Times, February 7, 2017, http://www.latimes.com/politics/la-live-updates-9th-circuit-arguments-courts-have-been-reluctant-to-1486509412-htmlstory.html
  17. [17]Joel Rubin, “Courts rarely second-guess the president on national security. But that doesn’t mean they can’t, experts said,” Los Angeles Times, February 7, 2017, http://www.latimes.com/politics/la-live-updates-9th-circuit-arguments-courts-have-been-reluctant-to-1486509412-htmlstory.html
  18. [18]Jonathan Hafetz, “Why Courts Appear Willing to Reject Trump’s Travel Ban Order,” Lawfare, February 6, 2017, https://www.justsecurity.org/37388/courts-reject-trumps-travel-ban-order/
  19. [19]Amy Davidson, “The Ninth Circuit and President Trump’s Lies,” New Yorker, February 8, 2017, http://www.newyorker.com/news/amy-davidson/the-ninth-circuit-and-president-trumps-lies
  20. [20]Jonathan Turley, “Judges In Seattle and Boston Reach Opposing Opinions On Trump Executive Order,” February 4, 2017, https://jonathanturley.org/2017/02/04/108507/
  21. [21]Mark Berman and Matt Zapotosky, “Acting attorney general declares Justice Department won’t defend Trump’s immigration order,” Washington Post, January 30, 2017, https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2017/01/30/trump-says-all-is-going-well-on-immigration-order-amid-questions-and-confusion/
  22. [22]Jordan Fabian, “Trump fires acting AG for refusing to defend travel ban,” Hill, January 30, 2017, http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/317018-trump-fires-acting-ag-for-refusing-to-defend-travel-ban

#Scotland to reconsider independence in wake of #Brexit: Daily Bullshit, October 13-14, 2016

Comparisons between the two U.S. major party presidential candidates boggle the mind. On one hand, we have a sexual predator and, on the other, a sexual predator’s wife who attacks his victims.

On one hand, we have a wannabe criminal against humanity and, on the other, we have someone who already is.

And on both hands, we have economic criminals, promising four or eight more years of ruin.

But this is where decades of settling for the ‘lesser of two evils’ leaves us: with evil.


Scottish independence

Peter Geoghegan, “Scottish nationalists huddle to talk Brexit, independence,” Deutschewelle, October 12, 2016, http://www.dw.com/en/scottish-nationalists-huddle-to-talk-brexit-independence/a-36015386

Peter Geoghegan, “Scotland eyes British exit,” Politico, October 12, 2016, http://www.politico.eu/article/all-eyes-on-scotland-scottish-national-party-conference-nicola-sturgeon/

Nicholas Winning, “Scotland to Consider New Independence Referendum Bill,” Wall Street Journal, October 13, 2016, http://www.wsj.com/articles/scotland-to-consider-new-independence-referendum-bill-1476363221


Brexit

Mike Bird, “Pound at Weakest Level in History Against Currency Basket,” Wall Street Journal, October 12, 2016, http://www.wsj.com/articles/pound-at-weakest-level-in-history-against-currency-basket-1476264024


Joe Arpaio

A. J. Vicens, “Sheriff Joe Arpaio Will Be Charged With Criminal Contempt of Court,” Mother Jones, October 11, 2016, http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2016/10/ap-sheriff-joe-arpaio-be-charged-criminal-contempt-court-over-immigration-patrols