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Free Markets, Free People

Ithaca College protests and demands president step down because of … racism.

And the copy cat outrage spreads.  You know, because racism!

Students at Ithaca College have started to protest the college president days after University of Missouri students successfully got their president to step down.

The protest was organized by the group People of Color at Ithaca College to express their concerns about racism on campus. They called for a vote of no confidence against Ithaca President Tom Rochon, as well as for Rochon to step down.

During the protests earlier today, The Ithaca Journal reports, one student asked, “How can a campus dedicated to preparing us for the real world not actively foster growth to our consciousness of oppression and privilege?”

There was a die-in and a silent demonstration amid the day of protests, all to get administrators to take their concerns seriously.

No mention of their concerns or their legitimacy, but hey, Mizzu’s weren’t legitimate and look how that turned out.  As one person wrote, no one claims to have seen the “poopswastica” supposedly found on a bathroom wall in a day and time when students take pictures and videos of themselves clipping their fingernails.  But somehow the phantom swastica wasn’t recorded (Nor has anyone come forward to claim to have seen it).

So if that worked for Mizzu, why not Ithaca?  After all, racial claims carry weight, just because … or at least they used too.  Until too many incidents were proven to be the work of minorities themselves.  But hey, if you’re a college student, you’re sure you know what racism is and you’ve been assured by the “victims” that it exists everywhere.  Therefore its as credible an excuse as any to get rid of a president.

Yup … the inmates are running the asylum.

Of course the irony and the humor is to be found in the fact that these little islands of insanity are the product of the professors and administration.



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Self-criticism anyone?

And then there is Yale.  A little “self-criticism”, a feature of another era, or so we thought.  How dare he question PC orthodoxy?!

“I have disappointed you and I’m really sorry,” Nicholas Christakis told about 100 students gathered in his living room on Sunday for a meeting also attended by Jonathan Holloway, the dean of Yale College, and other university administrators. Christakis said his encounter on Thursday with students in the college’s courtyard, in which numerous black women upbraided him for being inattentive to them, broke his heart, according to a voice recording of the conversation provided to The Washington Post.

“I mean it just broke my heart,” Christakis said. “I thought that I had some credibility with you, you know? I care so much about the same issues you care about. I’ve spent my life taking care of these issues of injustice, of poverty, of racism. I have the same beliefs that you do … I’m genuinely sorry, and to have disappointed you. I’ve disappointed myself.”

They don’t even realize where they’re headed.

And they’re supposed to be the “smart ones”.

Kevin Williamson drops the hammer on the whole bunch:

On Friday, I was honored to be a guest of the William F. Buckley Jr. Program at Yale, where I participated in a panel on freedom of speech with the wonderful writer Harry Stein and Professor Bradley A. Smith, a noted law scholar. The Yale kids did their screaming best to prevent us from having a conversation about free speech — the Yale kids are utterly immune to irony — but the event went much as planned. Coming and going, we were chanted at by idiot children screaming, “Genocide is not a joke!” . . .

If you’re wondering about the genocide thing, so were we.  . . . The idiot children were screaming about Lukianoff because he said they were overreacting to Christakis’s criticism that they tend to scream and overreact. Well played, idiot children.

Of course, these idiot children aren’t children. These are young adults who can serve in the military, get married, buy firearms, drink alcohol, etc. They are at the beginning years of adult life, but they are entirely unprepared for adult life. . . .

As for me, I think that they’re clowns, and worse than that, really: They’re bad citizens, and defective people from defective families. They aren’t motivated by good will, but by fear: of the dawning realization that they, as people, aren’t really all that important, despite having been told all their lives how important they are.

We’re all real sorry about your safe spaces and your pacifier and your stuffed puppy, Caitlyn. Really we are. Yet the perpetual revolution of configured stars continues in its indifference, and the lot of man is ceaseless labor, and though you may find the thought terrifying — and thinking itself terrifying — it may turn out to be the case that the screaming in the dark you do on campus is more or less the same screaming in the dark you did in the crib, the same howl for the same reason.

Call ’em what they are – “idiot children”.  And I mean “idiot” in the literal, though not PC, sense.

I’m still at a loss as to what these people think they’re going to face in the real world after they leave the realm of PC utopia.

Get a trophy, I guess.


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Economic Statistics for 10 Nov 15

The NFIB Small Business Optimism Index was unchanged at 96.1 in October.

Import prices fell -0.5% in October, while export prices fell -0.2%. Year-over year, prices are down -10.5% for imports, and -6.7% for exports.

Redbook reports that last week’s retail sales fell to 1.1% on a year-ago basis, from the previous week’s 1.9%, as sales weakness continues.

Wholesale inventories rose 0.5% in September, while a 0.5% increase in sales kept the stock-to-sales ratio unchanged at 1.31.

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Imagine a world without SJWs

How out of hand is SJW nonsense?  See the University of Missouri:

The student protest at the University of Missouri began as a response to a serious problem — outbursts of vile racism on campus — and quickly devolved into an expression of a renewed left-wing hostility to freedom of expression. At the protest on Missouri’s campus yesterday, on a space that is expressly open to free expression, protesters barred journalists from covering the demonstrations. In one scene, protesters surrounded and harassed Tim Tai, a photographer with the student newspaper, chanting, “Hey, hey, ho, ho, journalists have got to go.” The scene is captured on a video here, which rewards close watching until the end, where Melissa Click, a professor of mass media working with the protest movement, calls out, “Help me get this reporter out of here. I need some muscle over here.”

It is possible — and, for many sympathizers on the left, convenient — to dismiss these sorts of incidents as just so much college high jinks. “College students have been saying stupid things since the invention of college students,” argues Daniel Drezner, in a passage that attracted widespread support on the left. It is probably true that a strange and sudden new hypersensitivity among young people has produced a widespread expectation of a right to be protected from offense. It is also undeniably true that outbursts of political correctness disproportionately take place in campus settings. In recent weeks, UCLAWesleyan, and Yale have seen left-wing student activism aimed at shutting down the expression of contrary viewpoints.

Even if it were the case that political correctness was totally confined to campuses, it would not make the phenomenon unimportant. Colleges have disproportionate influence over intellectual life, and political movements centered on campuses can spread well beyond them (anti-Vietnam began as a bunch of wacky kids, too). But to imagine p.c. as simply a thing college kids do relieves us of taking it seriously as a coherent set of beliefs, which it very much is. Political correctness is a system of thought that denies the legitimacy of political pluralism on issues of race and gender. It manifests itself most prominently in campus settings not because it’s a passing phase, like acne, but because the academy is one of the few bastions of American life where the p.c. left can muster the strength to impose its political hegemony upon others. The phenomenon also exists in other nonacademic left-wing communities, many of them virtual ones centered on social media, and its defenders include professional left-wing intellectuals.

Now that you’ve read the three paragraphs, can you imagine who wrote them?  National Review, perhaps?

Nope … Jonathan Chait.  If you think the above is surprising, how about this paragraph:

American political correctness has obviously never perpetrated the brutality of a communist government, but it has also never acquired the powers that come with full control of the machinery of the state. The continuous stream of small-scale outrages it generates is a testament to an illiberalism that runs deep down to its core (a character I tried to explain in my January essay).

“Never acquired the powers that come with full control of the machinery of state.”  Well, that’s true … to an extent.  What isn’t true is it is absent.  It certainly exists in our political machinery, one doesn’t have too look very hard to find it.  Simply watch the Democratic presidential candidates kowtow to the absurd #blacklivesmatter crowd to understand that even a marginal group can seem to be more powerful than they are if they play the proper politically correct cards.  And it encroaches more and more daily.  In fact, the past 7 years have been SWJ heaven in terms of growth and effect.

However, it seems to now be consuming itself.

Our job, should we choose to do it, is to help it along.

Now that at least some on the left are beginning to wake up to the “end game” the SJWers demand, they’re beginning to reconsider.  This is a movement that needs to die.  And the only way to do that is to point out the absurdities, but to also point out the intent.  Control.  Complete control of what you say, and an attempt to control what you think.

Just be glad, at least to this point, that the PC movement hasn’t yet fully “acquired the powers that come with full control of the machinery of state.”  If it ever does, I think we can all point to a historic example or two where their utopia existed once … sorta.  And we all know how those ended.


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Economic Statistics for 6 Nov 15

The BLS reports that a higher-than-expected 271,000 net new jobs were created in October, the largest increase since December, 2014. The unemployment rate fell -0.1% to 5.0%. Average hourly earnings rose 0.4% to $25.20, while the average workweek was unchanged at 34.5 hours. The labor force participation rate was also unchanged at 62.4%. 313,000 people entered or re-entered the labor force, while the number of people reporting themselves employed rose 320,000. The number of people not in the labor force declined by -97,000. The U-6 unemployment rate, the broadest definition of unemployment published by the government, fell -0.2% to 9.8%.

Consumer credit surged $28.9 billion in September, the largest increase in the history of this data release. Revolving credit also rose $6.7 billion.

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Stray Voltage

Oh, Canada:

On Wednesday in Ottawa, Justin Trudeau was sworn in as Canadian prime minister. He wasted no time in announcing his newly chosen cabinet of exactly 15 men and 15 women, which fulfilled a campaign pledge he’d made about gender equality. One reporter asked Trudeau why the perfect male-female split was so important to him. The prime minster’s response: “Because it’s 2015.”

Translation – the best qualified for the job is a 20th Century concept.  In the 21st Century, it’s what you have (or don’t have) between your legs that matters.  Heh, yeah, governance won’t suffer.  Trust them.

Hillary Clinton signed a non-disclosure form concerning classified material?  Say, didn’t David Petraeus sign one too?

As the nation’s chief diplomat, Hillary Clinton was responsible for ascertaining whether information in her possession was classified and acknowledged that “negligent handling” of that information could jeopardize national security, according to a copy of an agreement she signed upon taking the job.

A day after assuming office as secretary of state, Clinton signed a Sensitive Compartmented Information Nondisclosure Agreement that laid out criminal penalties for “any unauthorized disclosure” of classified information. …

Meh.  We know this isn’t going anywhere soon, if ever.  And besides, “what difference does it make now.”  She’s a Democrat after all.

One very important reason we need the Idiot-in-Chief out of office as soon as possible:

The picture being painted by Obama’s soon-to-be-former advisors is one of a president paralyzed with indecision. He is being increasingly tested by the world’s bad actors and revisionist powers and has little resolve to act early and decisively. That is an impression that was confirmed by Reuters in October. They reported that the president was similarly incapacitated by the People’s Republic of China’s brazen decision to create new islands that would function as naval and air bases in the middle of the contested Spratly Islands late last year.

* * * * * * *

As the fruits of Barack Obama’s feckless approach to foreign affairs ripen, and the conflicts that he sought to resolve only deteriorate, the president’s advisors are increasingly training their fire on him. In the final year of this administration, that trend is only likely to intensify. If the Obama era is going to be remembered as the period when the seeds of chaos and conflict were sown, surely more creatures of Washington are going to emerge to make sure that they do not take the blame for sowing them. A president who has so perfected the art of throwing others under the bus is about to get the same treatment.

He’ll get a dump-truck load of criticism in the near future as the rats desert the obviously sinking ship.  “Pathetic”, “weak” and “indecisive” will some of the kindest descriptions this man’s legacy will reap.

Camile Puglia calls out the feminists and SJWs on the transgender issue:

“I think that the transgender propagandists make wildly inflated claims about the multiplicity of gender,” she said.

“Sex reassignment surgery, even today with all of its advances, cannot in fact change anyone’s sex, okay. You can define yourself as a trans man, or a trans woman, as one of these new gradations along the scale. But ultimately, every single cell in the human body, the DNA in that cell, remains coded for your biological birth.

“So there are a lot of lies being propagated at the present moment, which I think is not in anyone’s best interest.

“Now what I’m concerned about is the popularity and the availability of sex reassignment surgery, so that someone who doesn’t feel that he or she belongs to the biological birth, gender. People are being encouraged to intervene in the process.

“Parents are now encouraged to subject the child to procedures that I think are a form of child abuse. The hormones to slow puberty, actual surgical manipulations, etcetera. I think that this is wrong, that people should wait until they are of an informed age of consent.

Child abuse as well as abusing any thinking person’s intellect.  They radical left has vastly over reached on this one.  And that’s a good thing.

And what is wrong with the way public policy is formulated today?  Well, it could be as simple as this:

The first lessons I teach my economics students are about means-and-ends and tradeoffs. I tell them that whenever we analyze a policy matter, whether it’s the minimum wage, health care, ivory hunting or abortion, we have to ask ourselves these questions. First, do the chosen policies achieve the desired goals? Second, what tradeoffs do we face with regard to a particular policy; that is, are there alternatives that would yield better results?

These kinds of simple questions often are ignored by policymakers and the public.

Instead, today the party is considered first and foremost and alternatives are hardly ever considered. If it is deemed good for the party, damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead.  Thus the mess in which we find ourselves.

Have a good weekend.


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Economic Statistics for 5 Nov 15

Chain stores are reporting weaker rates of year-on-year sales in October, as warm weather held down sales of seasonals. 

Challenger reports that layoff announcements fell in October to 50,504 vs September’s 58,877.

Non-farm productivity rose only 1.6% in the 3rd Quarter, while unit labor costs rose 1.4%.

The Gallup Good Jobs rate (GGJ) was 45.3 percent in October, about the same as the last two months.

Initial weekly jobless claims rose 16,000 to 276,000. The 4-week average rose 2,500 to 262,750. Continuing claims rose 17,000 to 2.163 million.

The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index fell -1.7 points to 41.1 in the latest week.

The Fed’s balance sheet rose $0.4 billion last week, with total assets of $4.490 trillion. Reserve bank credit fell $-6.6 billion.

The Fed reports that M2 money supply rose by $15.4 billion in the latest week.

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