Cicadas, the Latest Addition to Chinese Cuisine

Business reporter Harrison Jacobs accurately describes China as a “techno–authoritarian” state. Where the Nazis used inaccurate Phrenology and calipers to identify enemies of the state, China uses the latest in technology to constantly identify, monitor, exhort and if need be, round up recalcitrant citizens.

The government’s reach is so pervasive that the fleeting appearance of a Taiwan flag emoji is enough to crash an iPhone the first time it appears. (The second time a functionary of state security will crash the phone with a hammer.)

Dave Granlund, Minnesota

China’s “Sharp Eyes” program will to install a nationwide surveillance camera network extending from public spaces to inside businesses and even private homes. The goal is for everyone to be on TV by 2020.

The accelerated development of facial recognition software makes the program feasible. The program’s rollout doesn’t leave much time for worries about early software bugs connected with real time surveillance of 1.4 billion people. Chinese state security is so efficient that even if the wrong man is identified, they’ll make sure he’s guilty of something.

The data produced by “Sharp Eyes” will be used to build an individual “social credit” score for every Chinese citizen. In the US a low credit score might prevent you from buying a car. In China, a low social credit score will keep you from buying a train ticket.

According to Breitbart, by using surveillance cameras, informers and state security the government “closely monitors the behavior of all individuals…People considered loyal, law–abiding members of the Communist Party are assigned high social credit scores, while those who violate the law…are assigned lower scores.”

By May of this year 11 million Chinese with low social credit scores had been prevented from boarding airplanes and another 4 million couldn’t get on a train. No reports as yet of low scorers being forbidden to buy shoes.

The social credit system originally documented Internet activity. Where Chinese went on the web, what they posted and even what they bought. Now the system has grown to encompass a wide range of transgressions including “jaywalking, returning library books late [or] possessing frowned–upon religious or political materials, or [exhibiting] insufficient patriotism.”

Regardless of how much this system would improve the quality of life in San Francisco and the NFL, it still sounds ominous to me. And now that China has announced a cicada infestation, the other shoe has dropped.

For those of you who don’t keep current on bugs, cicadas are noisy critters who are chained to a calendar cycle, much like comets and women. Only the insect’s cycle is once every 17 years. Cicadas make their way out of the ground in multitudes, produce an incredible amount of noise and then molt out of their current body into a completely new version, something like aging trophy wives.

My local Washington Post is so obsessed with these bugs that it almost has a cicada beat. As the time for Peak Cicada approaches one finds the paper filled with headlines like:

Are Cicada Infestations Harsher and More Frequent Due to Global Warming?

Insect Activist Is the First to Take a Selfie With a Cicada

Trump and Cicadas: Is There a Russian Connection?

Even the Style and Food sections join in the excitement: ‘Expert Suggestions for Removing Cicadas from Your Shoes’; and ‘Cicada Crunch: A Protein–Packed, Summer Casserole With No Trans–fat’.

Some claim cicadas even taste like shrimp which, if true, will come in handy, because that’s what the Chinese government wants citizens to do. The South China Morning Post reports the city of Hangzhou, located in eastern China, is under attack by cicadas and a city official is urging residents to save the trees by eating a bug.

“Sun Xiaoping, the official in charge of green spaces…[said] the best way to deal with the problem was for the local community to turn the tables on the creepy-crawlies and do some eating of their own.”

Cicadas travel in swarms that can approach 1 million bugs per acre. That’s enough insects to feed an extended Chinese family of 48 for almost a year or a North Korean family for a decade.

There’s been no talk of consumption quota, but it’s still early in the infestation. How cicada crunching will affect one’s social credit score is unknown, too. Will eating just one be enough to preserve your social credit score or will you get bonus points for sharing recipes?

Vegans may also face a Hobson’s Choice between obeying their dietary neuroses or maintaining a mass–transit level social credit score.

The fact cicadas as a whole are able to defeat predators by swarming in such large numbers may offer hope for fastidious Chinese. The trick is to enter a swarm, eat nothing, but emerge smacking their lips. Just don’t forget to face a camera.

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Time for Conservatives to Go On Strike

Retiring Rep. Paul Ryan (R–NeverTrump) has revealed what he hopes will be his lasting political legacy. Ryan intends to be the last Republican Speaker of the House. Ever.

And Ryan working hard to achieve his goal. The immigration bills he supports will do everything Donald Trump promised he wouldn’t do when he ran for president. Grant amnesty to DACA invaders and continue to dump low–wage visa workers into the food sector.

Gary McCoy, Shiloh, IL

Ryan’s bill gives amnesty to a minimum of 2 million illegals. A more accurate estimate, depending on the fraud levels and federal lassitude, is 6 million illegals. Plus, 1.35 million H–2C visas.

A Real Clear Politics poll shows that as soon as the conservative GOP base got wind of the plan, generic Republican poll numbers started dropping. Ryan doesn’t care, he’s busy burning down the House.

Amnesty presents problems for barnacles like Curator of the Senate Mitch McConnell (R–Inertia) who want to remain in DC. His solution is a warning that sounds more like a self–fulfilling prophecy.

The New York Times reports “…a strategy is emerging on the right for how to energize conservatives and drive a wedge between the anti–Trump left and moderate voters: warn that Democrats will immediately move to impeach President Trump if they capture the House.”

America Rising, a GOP consulting firm, sent an email warning “Right now the only thing standing between the president and the Democrats’ underhanded impeachment attempts is the Republican majority in the House fighting to defend our president.”

Former Trumper Steve Bannon, still stinking and smoldering from his political self–immolation, stopped beating out the flames long enough to add, “You have to put Donald Trump on the ticket. You’re not voting for Congress. You’re voting for Donald Trump.”

Thoughtful voters may find this ‘if you don’t vote for me, the other guy is gonna get it’ strategy curious. What possible additional damage could Democrats do after Republicans have willingly legalized 6 million new leftist voters?

GOP apologists can’t even attempt to balance the illegals sellout with other conservative legislation. There is none. Planned Parenthood still cashes federal checks. Competition is still missing from healthcare. The budget remains uncut. The federal government remains bloated.

The one bright spot is there’s a good chance Cinco de Mayo will soon be added to the list of national holidays!

It was ironic that McConnell was quoted telling an audience he’s like a cemetery groundskeeper, “Everybody’s under you but nobody’s listening.” It’s an accurate description of McConnell’s tenure as Senate Majority Leader. He marks time, keeping the lawn mowed and the bushes trimmed while awaiting Jesus’ return — when something will finally get done.

This month marks the only achievement that is really important to the curator. McConnell is now the longest serving GOP Senate majority leader in history. His legacy is longevity. Something that can also be said of a turtle.

It takes dedication and gullibility to find something in McConnell’s record to celebrate. The Hill contends a refusal to hold a vote on Obama’s final nominee to the Supreme Court is “McConnell’s most lasting legacy.” And the Emperor of Inertia’s strategy wasn’t even original. He was following ‘Shotgun’ Joe Biden’s lead.

The Hill was also impressed because McConnell, “kept a steady hand on the party through two political revolutions within the GOP: the emergence of the Tea Party in 2009 and 2010 and the election of President Trump.” Yes, McConnell managed to waste an unprecedented grassroots movement for change.

Now two bodies filled with ‘leadership’ that can’t stand the president are using Trump as a human shield. Vote to keep people in office who won’t do what you want — to prevent people from getting in office who will do what their base wants.

If you’re like me and are tired of campaign–only conservatives, lets send a message in November that even McConnell can’t ignore. It’s time for conservatives to go on strike.

This November conservatives should vote for the GOP Senate candidate and write in ‘On Strike’ as their congressional vote. ‘On Strike’ — instead of Mickey Mouse or Goofy — sends an unmistakable message.

‘On Strike’, we can make a difference. The write–in vote in Alabama was enough to deny victory to the creep. Our November write–ins can deny another victory to do–nothing, country club conservatives.

A Democrat House will try to impeach Trump, grab guns and may require Christians to not only bake same–sex wedding cakes, but also attend the service. So what? McConnell has plenty of room in his legislative mortuary.

The strike ends in 2020. We recapture the House delivering another base–generated wave for McConnell. Only this time, instead of wasting it like the TEA party and Trump waves, McConnell will know he either uses it or we’ll lose him.

Cold Civil War May Be Heating Up

Recent developments on the restaurant front are going to put a dent into ‘date night’ plans for Kellyanne Conway and her husband. If Sarah Huckabee Sanders can’t eat in peace with her Never Trump in–laws in some central Virginia one–horse–town, there’s no way Conway can have a sit–down dinner anywhere in DC or Northern Virginia and the drive–through may be out of the question, too.

Huckabee could have solved her problem by going around the corner to the Robert E. Lee Hotel for Italian. There is no way even the most self–righteous Social Justice Warrior would follow her into an establishment named after ‘Marse Robert.’

Rick McKee, The Augusta Chronicle, GA

Low–level Trump administration employees in Oregon should be so lucky.

For over a week in Portland, OR the domestic terrorist group Antifa has been blockading the entrance of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement building. Oregon Live reports the fascists claim they are staging their “round–the–clock occupation in opposition to the Trump administration’s immigration crackdown, including its policy of separating migrant children from their parents at the U.S. border.”

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler agrees, “The policy being enacted by the federal government around the separation of very small children from their parents is an abomination. I want to be very clear I do not want the @PortlandPolice to be engaged or sucked into a conflict, particularly from a federal agency that I believe is on the wrong track, that has not fully lived American values of inclusion and is also an agency where the former head suggested that people who lead cities that are sanctuary cities like this one should be arrested.”

Since Wheeler and other sanctuary politicians are conspiring to obstruct the enforcement of federal immigration law, they should be arrested. If President Trump can be investigated for obstructing an imaginary Russia collusion crime, then Wheeler should expect equal treatment for proven obstruction.

Wheeler proves its short journey from sanctimonious ‘sanctuary city’ politicians deciding what laws they will enforce, to deciding who qualifies for protection under the law. In Portland’s Wheeler regime, illegal aliens are immune to federal immigration law, while federal employees don’t qualify for protection by the police.

I’m reasonably sure Wheeler isn’t a religious man, but what he’s done is equivalent to being excommunicated by the Catholic Church in the Middle Ages. The protection of government is removed from the excommunicated and they are on their own.

Wheeler’s denying federal employees protection under the law covers all the bases of lawlessness. It’s a direct violation of his oath of office where he pledged to “support the Constitutions of the United States and the State of Oregon; Charter of the City of Portland and its laws.” And selective enforcement of the law violates the ‘equal protection’ clause of the 14th Amendment to the Constitution.

Police Chief Danielle Outlaw appears to be a good German and is following the mayor’s orders to let lawlessness reign. This really is no different from Nazi Germany, where the police were ordered by party officials to ignore Brown Shirt attacks on Communists.

It’s only a short rotation on the color wheel from Brown Shirt fascists to black–clad Antifa fascists.

This is also where society begins to unravel. If federal employees doing their job for a legitimately elected president can’t expect protection from local police their taxes support, then it won’t be long before the employees decide to take their safety into their own hands.

Wheeler’s us–against–them politics has aroused the interest of Uncle Sam. Usually local officials and police don’t like it when the feds start big–footing around their jurisdiction. Here Wheeler invites it and the invitation has been accepted by the Federal Protective Service.

The Service distributed a flyer ordering occupiers to leave: “It is unlawful under federal law to obstruct the entrances, foyers, lobbies, corridors, offices and/or parking lots of federal facilities.”

Those arrested will be sent to a federal facility and tried in a federal court.

The ICE building takes up the entire block where it’s located. Assuming Antifa clears federal land without a street battle, the feds are powerless to evict them from private property surrounding the block. The occupiers could well emulate the border jumpers they profess to love and trespass on adjacent private land. Where Portland cops will continue to ignore them.

Sanders was no doubt irritated by her treatment, but she had meal options. That’s not the case with law enforcement. When the police violate their oath and duty by refusing to protect law–abiding citizens from a fascist mob, there is no other option for the average citizen except direct action.

Wheeler and the other leftists in his Amen corner need to ask themselves if that’s really a road down which they want to travel.

Donald Trump Suffers Separation Anxiety

When journalist Lenore Skenazy first introduced the concept of “free range parenting” I knew it was only a matter of time before the idea would careen out of control. Free range parenting is a return to the 1960’s when kids were allowed to enjoy frightening activities like walking alone to the store, playing unsupervised in the park and remaining unwatched and unmonitored for hours at a time.

Free range is a particularly risky choice for citizens who live in a state run by leftist nannies, as Danielle and Alexander Meitiv discovered to their dismay. Their children were spotted walking home from a park located less than a mile from home.

Sean Delonas, CagleCartoons.com

The two were seized by local police and held until their parents could be investigated by Maryland Child Protective Services functionaries. The resulting ‘investigation’ found the Meitivs guilty of neglect.

US children don’t even have to be moving under their own power for parents to have them ‘separated’ by the authorities. If mom runs into 7/11 on a hot day to buy a Powerball ticket, and leaves junior in the car with the windows down, she can be arrested for neglect even though junior is close enough to hit with a wadded–up Powerball ticket.

And the ticket isn’t the only loser. Mom will be separated from junior until she grovels enough for CPS to be satisfied.

That’s not the way Extreme Free Range parenting is practiced in Latin America.

Rango libre parents send their unaccompanied kids thousands of miles north. In the States parents can get in trouble for letting their kids chase the ice cream man. But it’s “no hay problema” when the kids are chasing Uncle Sam.

The Opposition Media ignores the fact that citizen parents are held to a higher standard than illegal parents. For that matter, Walmart shoplifters are held to a higher standard. The first action the police take after arresting the parent is to separate the children.

None of the OpMedia, leftist politicians or spineless Republicans ever ask the obvious question: What kind of parent lets their child travel hundreds of miles with strangers? What parent brings the kids along when they break the law? And how is society served by leaving children with abusive or criminally stupid parents?

That’s not rango libre parenting, it’s felony parenting.

Approximately 12,000 children are being held on our southern border. Only 2,000 of those children are with people claiming to be their parents, the other 10,000 somehow arrived by themselves.

The left claims the border situation is different. While the Walmart shopper is just another petty thief, the Hispaniard is a “refugee” seeking asylum. Just as patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel, asylum is the last refuge of the illegal.

My ICE source tells me most of the asylum claims only come after the “refugee” is informed he will be sent back to his country. That’s the point in the interview when the illegal slaps his knee and says, “¡Ay, caramba! I forgot to tell you about the death squad!”

And these are death squads with strange priorities. What is it about the landscaping community that has marked so many of them for pruning? Back during the Reagan administration (home of the one–time–only amnesty for illegals) Central American death squads targeted the elite leadership of a country. Politicians, journalists, educators, lawyers and the wealthy were all in the crosshairs.

But these days it appears instead of concentrating on movers and shakers, modern death squads are after mowers and rakers.

Another fact that works to undermine the credibility of “refugees” and their separated children is geography. If I were a battered woman or a lawn care specialist targeted for extinction, I would apply for asylum at the nearest US consulate. There are four located between the southern border of Mexico and the border of Texas.

Why wait days to apply if you’re in real danger? That’s easy. They aren’t in danger and if an applicant is turned down in the interior of Mexico he’s on his own. But if he can make it to the US border Uncle Sam will leave the light on and take care of food and lodging while the process grinds to a conclusion.

Now President Trump has single–handedly undermined his stringent enforcement policy by cratering and allowing illegals to keep their “children.” For a while Latin America saw there were consequences to violating US immigration law. That’s gone now. The US is once again provides a soft landing for foreigners characterized by recklessness, avarice and contempt for the law.

Even worse, Trump has damaged his own immigration credibility with his base. Now the left knows if they broadcast enough pictures of crying kids, Trump will once again be an immigration tigre de papel.

Leftists Taking Language Instruction from Corporations

Jordan Peterson, a Canadian professor of psychology at the University of Toronto, is enjoying some measure of fame and its attendant notoriety for boldly coming out in support of common sense. He’s even steadfast enough to continue his support when it conflicts with edicts from the leftist Speech Police.

This would be courageous at a US university, but it becomes almost foolhardy at a Canadian college.

Peterson believes in self–reliance and responsibility. And just as he wouldn’t allow aggressive strangers to choose his pants, he’s also not allowing aggressive strangers to choose his pronouns.

Columnist John Stossel writes that when asked about an entirely hypothetical — for now — law that “would require everyone to call people by the pronoun they prefer — pronouns like “ze” instead of “he” or “she”, Peterson said he would refuse to obey.

I’m with Peterson on this. I can’t even get my relatives and fellow Baptists to call me by the correct proper name of ‘Michael,’ instead of ‘Mike,’ so why should strangers have the power to compel pronouns by force of law?

Peterson’s reasoning is sound. “I don’t care what people want to be called. But that doesn’t mean I should be compelled by law to call them that. The government has absolutely no business whatsoever ever governing the content of your voluntary speech.”

I would assume for Peterson that includes ‘hate’ speech and ‘he’ speech.

Naturally this perfectly reasonable position tripped the outrage alarm on his campus. Hundreds of easily–herded academics signed a petition calling for Peterson to be fired by the university. And students who are happy to extend toleration to any ideology with which they agree and condemn any they dislike, now bring bullhorns to Peterson’s speeches to drown out his impure thinking.

I’ve been giving some thought to where these fascists got the idea it was permissible to control someone else’s language and I’ve come to the conclusion they are merely aping their corporate overlords.

Monkey see, monkey say, if you will.

In my opinion the seed for this preposterous language control was planted in 2006 when Nintendo introduced its new gaming system, the Wii. Starting with the product rollout Nintendo caused controversy in my house as I displayed a Peterson–like resistance to corporate control of my vowels. Standard English pronunciation rules dictate ‘W–i–i’ is pronounced ‘W–eye’, with both ‘i’s being long.

Not so, according to Tokyo. Wikipedia informs us the Japanese decided ‘W–i–i’ was to be pronounced “W–ee” and the wikis even had the gall to use the preexisting English word ‘wee’ (meaning small) to illustrate how Nintendo wanted the name of their authoritarian Wii to be mispronounced.

Nintendo’s excuse for butchering the pronunciation of the language and fomenting disrespect among my children was the “two lower-case “i” characters are intended to resemble two people standing side-by-side, representing players gathering together…”

Instead, it looks to me like two intimidated customers cowering under the baleful glare of the boss–like Big W.

Even today when I use standard English pronunciation for ‘Wii’ I’m either instantly instructed to mispronounce the name or given an indulgent smile while my wife is asked if I display any other symptoms of Old Timer’s Disease.

Evidently, I should have made a bigger stink in 2006. Possibly held a demonstration in front of the Japanese embassy in Washington. Claimed Nintendo was “wii wii–ing on our language.” Enlisted the help of English teachers and speech therapists.

Now it’s just a short step from “Wii” control to “ze” control. I can understand how deluded people, who feel they are a woman in a man’s body, might live with a certain level of anger. It’s not like they can return to the customer service desk at the hospital and demand a new body.

What I don’t like is taking out their frustration on the rest of us and recruiting a pack of braying donkeys to make us conform.

Dragooning pronouns into a ginned up political controversy to give abnormals more power over normals will either push the culture one step closer to a not so soft totalitarianism or add more velocity to a potentially dangerous backlash.

Anthony Esolen, an author I admire, recently remarked on the class of individual that seeks to bend the culture to its constantly proliferating set of rules and regulations for the leftist life: “The politicization of everything makes human life unlivable. These people are a hundred times worse than what they believe Joe McCarthy to have been: they are censors without self–restraint, Puritans without God, libertines without pleasure, and eternal politicians without the least sense of what a polis really is. I would not call them a nest of vipers, because vipers are at least respectable in their straightforward malignity. They are a seething mass of poisonous worms.”

Constipation Is an Advantage When Flying American Airlines

Members of any airline frequent flyer club have seen the benefits of membership gradually erode under the relentless assault of airline bean–counters. The yearly mileage necessary to qualify for even the lowest membership level has increased dramatically over the years.

At the same time the member’s accumulated miles have been devalued as the mileage cost of free tickets has been increased to a minimum of 25,000 miles. Other perks, like upgrades and airport lounge passes, associated with climbing up the frequent flyer status ladder, have also been reduced or eliminated.

Milt Priggee, Oak Harbor, WA

The only airline club where the benefits have remained largely intact is the Mile–High Club and now American Airlines has declared war on that collection of randy flyers.

On AA’s new 737–MAX aircraft one would have to be Tyrion Lannister to have even the remotest hope of conducting an induction ceremony, and even then it would be very close. Passengers flying on the remodeled 737 would do well to gate–check their claustrophobia.

The new bathrooms on that aircraft are so small the usage experience more closely resembles that of a human cannonball than it does of relieving oneself. At the circus the human cannonball knows, given the dimensions of the gun tube, once inside he’s not going to have the luxury of repositioning himself.

The same is true for the cruelly–named 737–MAX.

The ‘MAX’ bathroom is 25 percent smaller than the telephone booths flyers have grown accustomed to using in the past. The new comfort coffins are so tight it is impossible to turn around once inside with the door closed. This presents no problem for women or men who want to keep their options open, but for the rest of us, we’re going to have to commit before we close the door.

Plus–sized passengers may require the assistance of Crisco or their fellow passengers to get in and get out.

And that’s not where the similarity to Ringling Brothers ends.

Just as the human cannonball is expelled by the expansion of hot gases trapped behind him in the tube, passengers following an exiting flyer too closely into the aircraft lavatory may find themselves wishing they could eject when encountering a large hot aroma trapped in a small confined space.

These indignities are only confined to healthy passengers. Nervous flyers or those with sensitive stomachs would do well to start practicing hurling while standing erect, because it is impossible to bend over in those bathrooms. This will be no problem for drunks and three–year–olds, but for rest of us abandon all hope of privacy as you are forced to leave the door open to bend over and be sick.

I always assumed when it came to mobile evacuation nothing could top the combination of indignity and excitement one experienced using a bus bathroom while the vehicle was in motion. It would have made perfect sense for Greyhound to install timers in those ‘restrooms’ so passengers could try and remain seated as long as the average bull rider.

Yet even in the worst bus bathroom I never got the impression the company had it in for me. Not so with American Airlines. Only a corporation that’s part of a lock–step oligopoly could exhibit such utter contempt for the comfort and dignity of its customers. To say nothing of its own reputation.

Starbucks shut the entire company down to atone for its sin after offending two black guys that weren’t even customers. American Airlines insults its entire customer base while laughing all the way to the bank.

The indignity doesn’t stop after you’ve finished your business. The sink in this washcoffin is so tiny passengers can only wash one hand at a time. It would have made more sense to dispense with the sink altogether in favor of waterless hand cleaner and devote the added room to the preservation of male kneecaps.

Flight attendants are on the passenger’s side in this dispute. The two shoebox bathrooms are located across from each other in the rear. Attendants have discovered that if doors open simultaneously, the two frequently snag, forming an impromptu wall that traps them in the galley.

Our loss in comfort and privacy is naturally American’s gain. Smaller bathrooms, thinner seats and less distance between seats allow more passengers. AA has increased the load from 160 passengers to 172 with the letterbox–sized bathrooms.

Flyers like me who avoid AA aren’t safe either. Airlines are in figurative race to the bottom and I fear my United will soon adopt AA’s malign one–holer design. The only bright spot I can see — and limited to longer flights — is the reduction in bathroom size might force American to institute a corresponding reduction is flight attendant size. In the interest of safety, of course.

NFL Limits Demonstrations to the End Zone

It required a high level of self–absorption and a correspondingly low grasp of irony for bench–warming quarterback Colin Kaepernick to begin protesting “racial injustice” during the Obama administration.

In all of recorded history there have been exactly two Western nations that have elected black presidents and in Haiti’s case I’m using the term ‘nation’ loosely. Also, ‘elected.’

Rick McKee, Augusta Chronicle

The protest didn’t offend Obama, who lacks an emotional investment in football. I imagine he’s more of an Ultimate Frisbee kinda guy. The interesting speculation is wondering what George Bush would have said if Kaepernick had begun taking a knee during his administration.

I’m thinking Bush would have deployed his standard response: Hunker down and hope it goes away. At best we would have received a statement much like Obama’s on–one–hand–and–on–the–other deflection that equated the loss of a United States soldier or Marine as the moral equivalent of the shooting of strong–arm robber Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO.

Bush was one of those caretaker conservatives who knew better than to rock the Cultural Marxist’s boat. He certainly wouldn’t get into some unseemly social dispute that might matter to conservatives, particularly when the disagreement involved a minority.

That’s why Trump in the White House is such a danger to the leftist elite that currently rules our culture. He will get into those fights. Trump relishes those fights. And the leftist bullies running roughshod over the culture hate it when the victim finally fights back.

They like it even less when the victim wins.

Only in America could a black quarterback who was raised by white parents, attended a prestige university and earned millions as a professional football player think it made sense for him to insult the flag and the patriotic Americans who love it. Not only that, this emotionally immature narcissist thinks he should be praised for his ‘brave’ stand and embraced by the league.

That’s why Kaepernick is currently suing the NFL and alleging he was ‘blacklisted’ and denied the job that’s rightfully his.

This is like a waiter, who moonlights as a member of PETA, demanding he be hired by Outback Steakhouse so he can tell customers: “Meat is Murder.” Or a car salesman demanding he be hired by GMC trucks so he can tell potential buyers that not driving an electric car makes them climate criminals.

Using someone else’s business to deliver a message that insults the customer is economic appropriation. NFL owners decided indulging a leftist–approved protest was one thing and watching TV ratings plunge after the protests began was quite another. That’s why owners, after a boot in the behind from the unhousebroken Trump, have decided to confine all demonstrations to the end zone, while banning them from the sideline.

If the under–the–man’s–boot millionaires of the NFL want to work in a quick protest during the end zone touchdown celebration they can pantomime away, but there won’t be any protest during The Star–Spangled Banner.

Naturally, much of the Opposition Media considers changing employee conduct rules to prevent insulting the customer a racist act.

Kevin B. Blackistone, an oppressed black man who is a Washington Post columnist and university professor, believes Making America Great Again involves putting blacks back on the plantation. His column blasting the new anthem policy begins with the harrowing tale of NBA player Sterling Brown’s encounter with Milwaukee PD.

It’s proof of how debased America’s political culture is when the hero of Blackistone’s tale of oppression crying out for justice is a jerk who takes up TWO handicapped parking spaces and refuses to follow lawful police orders. Brown is perfectly healthy professional athlete who doesn’t believe the rules the rest of us follow apply to him. And besides, didn’t those cops in their ratty polyester pants KNOW WHO HE IS?

That’s the type of injustice Kaepernick and the rest of his hey–look–at–me followers are protesting. Somehow it escapes their notice that the athletic merit that allows blacks to dominate the rosters of NFL teams all out of proportion to their percentage of the population has a flip side. The lack of behavioral merit exhibited by some members of the same racial category results in their being over represented on the arrests and incarceration side of the ledger.

Unfortunately, being a ‘social justice’ advocate means never having to acknowledge the law of cause and effect.

None of these fanboy reporters ever asks the question that any movement should be able to answer, which is: How will you know when you’ve won?

Is it when blacks are allowed to vote? When a black woman has the top rated national talk show? When the US elects a black president?

The fact they can’t answer the question shows how empty their movement really is.

Starbucks Seeking Volunteers for Sociology Experiment

Previously Starbucks’ customer base had its own individual criteria for choosing a favorite coffee spot among the company’s many outlets. It might be a comely barista, the pastry selection or the free Wi–Fi signal’s clarity.

For the immediate future, however, I suggest abandoning all criteria but one: The strength of the cellphone connection, because chances are you’re going to need it.

Since two trespassers were arrested in a downtown Philadelphia Starbucks in April, the corporate has been doing the Social Justice Limbo where management sees just how far it can bend over backwards and still maintain a functioning business.

Now that headquarters has decreed it’s ‘Come One, Come All’, everyone is welcome to use the bathroom, occupy furniture and log on to the Internet. If they happen to buy something, so much the better, but it’s no longer required.

It’s a brave new business model that’s a combination of temporary office suite and homeless day shelter.

This week saw the company issue new guidelines for employees who might want to tempt fate and call 911. It’s a bureaucrat’s dream. The decision–making process includes observation, self–doubt, second–guessing, second opinions, re–checking the manual, calling corporate and then hoping the problem went away while the staff was negotiating with itself.

Incidents that qualify for an immediate 911 include: Fire, robbery, selling drugs, destruction of store property or a gas leak (although God help the employee if the leak was simply Venti bean burrito exhaust).

Other incidents are a judgment call and require a corporate–choreographed decision–making process. First the ‘partner,’ as Starbucks laughingly calls its employees, is to “assess” the ‘guest’s’ behavior. Is it culturally appropriate or is it cultural appropriation? It’s important for the partner to separate the behavior from the individual. The process resembles Evangelicals and homosexuality — hate the sin, while loving the sinner.

Behaviors that are currently held in corporate disrepute include “being unreasonably noisy, viewing inappropriate media, verbally abusing people, making unwanted sexual advances and indecent exposure
.”

Step three of the pre–emergency call journey is the partner “[considering] how any decision will affect the customer’s experience.” Will not cursing out the person who tripped over his shopping cart mean the guest suffers increased stress? Will he/she/zir experience heightened sexual tension if they’re prevented from groping an adjacent guest? And could the partner be judgmentally assuming “indecent exposure” when the guest was only trying to increase air circulation?

Assuming the incident hasn’t been resolved by customers acting on their own initiative, the partner will then ponder “whether the customer or situation is safe to approach and whether an employee’s chosen response would be the same for any customer in the same circumstance.
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Before this glacial minuet brings the partner within hailing distance of the disruptive guest, another partner must be asked to “observe and verify” the behavior. Only then is management to approach and introduce themselves and ask for the person’s name.

In no time at all I predict Starbucks will be home to the type of colorful human–interest stories — often featuring bodycam footage — that are commonly associated with Waffle House and Walmart parking lots. As one observer commented to CBS, the new Starbucks “will be a homeless camp. But at least we won’t have to deal with them on the street.”

That’s the current action plan, but savvy Starbucks employees know corporate policy can change on a dime. The Philly manager was following store policy when she called the cops, but that didn’t stop her from being fired when the media called corporate.

The real partner policy will be a series of informal questions designed to insure they keep their job. The first will be: Is the unruly guest a minority or passing as one? If the answer is ‘yes,’ the call decision is ‘no.’

If the guest isn’t a minority, but is also not wearing a MAGA hat, the partner must investigate further. Is the guest part of a protected group that may include whites? This normally involves something of a sexual nature and may require the use of intuition, Gaydar or checking for wallets attached to pants with a chain.

If the answer is even a remotely possible ‘yes’ the call is still a ‘no.’

The truth is no Starbucks employee was ever fired for the customer calling 911, and since under new policy the customer is always right, let them make the call.

And all this is before the May 29th shutdown of all Starbucks’ outlets for ‘Re–Education Day’ where highly paid trainers will hector the white partners in an attempt to stamp out “unconscious bias.” My last prediction is once that’s complete, all 175,000 Starbucks employees will be easy to spot: They’re the people not on the phone when all hell breaks loose.

What If Obamacare Sold Homeowner’s Insurance?

If homeowner’s insurance worked like Obamacare, in no time at all homelessness would be a viable option for residents trying to lower their insurance cost.

Under Obamahome, construction contractors would talk endlessly about how compassionate their employees are. Edgy companies would assert that dealing with an English–speaking crew makes rebuilding your home a breeze. But no company would be talking prices or making binding estimates.

Instead homeowners would hire the company that was closest or had the most caring spokesperson. Really shrewd homeowners might check a Yelp review, but that would be the extent of the research. When it came time to sign the contract the homeowner would pay his deductible and the bill for the covered procedure would go direct to the insurance company.

The homeowner would remain blissfully unaware of what his newly repaired roof, siding, basement or deck cost to fix.

Under Obamahome, renters are also covered, but renters wouldn’t be required to pay a premium. And homeowners who had a loss, but weren’t covered by insurance — because they opted to make the final payment on their Sistine Chapel tattoo — can both buy a policy and file a claim during the same transaction.

At premium–setting time, homeowners would discover Obamahome rates had to be set high enough cover their house and their prorated portion of the renter’s and the pre–existing damage claims.

Soon they’re confronted with Obama’s Choice: To get an affordable premium, homeowners must choose between a much higher deductible for the same coverage or the same deductible for much less coverage.

The result is a $12,000 deductible that covers everything up to and including Hurricane Stormy or a $1,000 deductible that covers tornados and fire, but excludes hail, wind, lightening and floods.

Fortunately, homeowner’s insurance doesn’t malfunction like Obamacare, and with any luck the Texas Supreme Court may force hospitals to adopt pricing reform.

The Dallas Morning News reports Crystal Roberts was rushed to an emergency room after a car crash. The good news is she was home three hours later. The bad news is accompanying her was a bill for $11,037.35 for X–rays, CT scan, lab tests and ‘other’ services. Crystal was charged the ‘This Is Gonna Hurt’ rate because she lacked insurance.

But she didn’t lack a lawyer, so Crystal sued. The Texas Supremes ruled that if the hospital intended to prove Roberts’ bill “reasonable” it must “share … details about the discounted rates it had with health insurers, data that’s generally seen as proprietary and confidential.”

I’ll say it’s “confidential.” You’d have better luck finding Trump’s tax returns. The only price information a patient gets on a visit to the hospital is what it costs to park.

One wouldn’t know that from the story, though. Economics illiteracy among journalists continues unchecked, “While few dispute costs are out of control and transparency would help, the ruling is seen as unprecedented by some, who worry it could deal a big blow to free market competition in health care.”

The statement couldn’t be more wrong. It’s like saying if we banned Consumer Reports Car Buying Service and prohibited window stickers on new cars it would increase competition and lower prices.

The ability to compare prices encourages competition, while concealing prices encourages price–fixing.

The decision is a tentative step toward my simple, Constitutional, solution for increasing healthcare competition. First, require any hospital taking federal money to post turnkey prices for the 25 most common hospitalized surgical procedures; the 25 most common out–patient procedures and the 25 most common tests. All charges must match the best price offered insurance companies – the information the Texas hospital doesn’t want to share.

Second, allow insurance companies to compete across state lines, creating a national market. Any national policy won’t be subject to state-level regulations. This means state politicians with itchy legislative fingers can’t force companies to cover pap smears, prostate exams, birth control, or any medical fad do-gooders want to force on consumers. Individual buyers will be able to pay for the coverage they want and not be forced to pay for coverage a major campaign contributor wants them to have.

Policies must be offered in all states to escape individual state regulation. Any company selling a policy within a state must conform to that state’s financial stability rules.

Third, no exclusions for pre-existing conditions if the patient can prove continuous coverage for the prior six months. Otherwise, a six-month waiting period. Patients who don’t want to buy private insurance can participate in a federal high–risk pool.

Depending on judges to reform healthcare is spotty and imprecise.  We need Congress. The only negative impact my reform might have is on hospitals and the Medical Industrial Complex. That’s why it won’t happen. Those insiders make large campaign contributions and the likes of Crystal Roberts don’t.

Mitch McConnell Is Just a Clerk at Heart

Curator of the Senate Mitch McConnell has decided to re-define his role in public life. McConnell is moving away from characterizing himself as a conservative legislative titan. According to an obsequious profile in The Weekly Standard (a Never–Trumper hotbed), McConnell has found his true calling.

The curator believes the best use of his talents is to serve as the Human Resources Department for the federal judiciary. In his new role as head of HR McConnell contends that whatever happens to those losers in the House this November, the Senate must remain in his swampy hands.

Pat Begley The Salt Lake Tribune, UT

The Emperor of Inertia has come to the belated realization that voters were listening when he promised them electing a Republican–controlled Senate, House and White House would mean a rebirth of conservative legislation.

The reality was different. Voters got premature ejaculations on election night and nothing has been conceived since.

“The stuff we did last year was clearly a Republican agenda,” McConnell rationalizes. “…judges, taxes and regulations — that’s what we live to do, and virtually all of those are forever done on a party–line basis.”

Like Union Civil War Gen. George McClellan, in his mind McConnell is always outnumbered and facing overwhelming odds. Mitch is convinced LBJ couldn’t have done a better job, but the voters aren’t. That means McConnell’s first task is political alchemy. He must turn stagnation into steak.

 

Yet two of the three “accomplishments” are reactive at best. The only vaguely conservative legislation passed thru his initiative was the tax bill and taxes weren’t the driving issue during the 2016 campaign. None of the conservative legislation voters said they wanted has been passed. None of the leftist legislation conservatives want eliminated has been repealed.

The cocktail conservatives at the Weekly Standard don’t mind. They depict this weak, elderly placeholder as a victorious boxer with both gloves raised overhead. They would have you believe, “Republicans are better off than they look. The midterm election is six months away, and their chances of preserving a good–sized chunk of their power in Washington are good.”

This is supposed to be good news? Up until this November Republicans had 100 percent of the power and did nothing. Losing half their legislative clout is supposed to raise our morale? Any perceptive conservative voter will ask the obvious question: What’s in it for me?

The truth is, nothing, but McConnell gets to keep his big office if the GOP wins.

Hence McConnell’s makeover. He doesn’t want to move. The way to conceal his failure to repay the conservative base for its loyalty, is by completely changing voter expectations. Now instead of being Mr. Legislator, McConnell is telling voters he’s Mr. LinkedIn! The one–stop networking source for Republican lawyers looking for a soft landing in the judiciary.

“If we hold the Senate,” McConnell explains, “we can continue to confirm nominations to lifetime appointments for a full four years and finish the job of transforming the American judiciary, which is my number–one goal.” You might say it’s one lifetime incumbent eager to recruit more lifetime federal employees, which he hopes won’t ‘grow in office’ once they land on the bench.

Forget about resetting the dial on the family, immigration, religious freedom, federal spending or reducing the size of a bloated, wasteful federal government. Who has time for that when Mitch is conducting job interviews for circuit court?

Even if you’re a conservative who buys into Senate–as–headhunter, there is this nagging question. Where do those judicial nominations that McConnell is so eager to ratify originate? Is there a ticker–tape deep in the bowels of the Supreme Court building that generates a candidate whenever an opening appears?

Or does Mitch man a booth at legal job fairs where he lassos likely candidates?

All that’s immaterial to the Standard. They are in awe of the process, “In this ambitious effort, it takes two — a leader and a [Judiciary Committee] chairman — to tango.”

Well, no. Truthfully this matchmaker isn’t making any matches. Instead the nominations originate in a White House occupied by the dreaded President Donald Trump. I’m no cheerleader for Trump. His waffling on DACA, his short attention span and his embrace of the spend–a–palooza budget bill are infuriating.

Still, without Trump in the White House there wouldn’t be any nominations to “transform the American judiciary.” Hillary would be president and she’d be sending the names of leftist politicians who think they look good in black. But we are 800 words deep in a 994–word puff piece before Trump’s name is even mentioned and then it’s in connection with impeachment!

Mealy–mouthed, multi–chins like McConnell are the reason Trump won in the first place. Their continued failure to grasp that fact explains the trouble they face in November.