PowerLine -> John Hinderaker – The Kim Destiny Pictures Video: Brilliant or Stupid? + At last, evidence of collusion

Powerline image at HoaxAndChange

PowerLine -> John Hinderaker – The Kim Destiny Pictures Video: Brilliant or Stupid? + At last, evidence of collusion

Powerline image at HoaxAndChange

Powerline image at HoaxAndChange

Daily Digest


  • Green Weenie of the Week: The DNC
  • A great high school and the mayor who would diminish it
  • Loose Ends (40)
  • The Kim Destiny Pictures Video: Brilliant or Stupid? [Updated]
  • At last, evidence of collusion
Green Weenie of the Week: The DNC

Posted: 13 Jun 2018 04:14 PM PDT

(Steven Hayward)How totally brave of the Democratic National Committee:

DNC Quietly Adopts Ban on Fossil Fuel Company Donations

The Democratic National Committee voted over the weekend to ban donations from fossil fuel companies, HuffPost has learned.

The resolution ― proposed by Christine Pelosi, a party activist and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s daughter ― bars the organization from accepting contributions from corporate political action committees tied to the oil, gas and coal industries. The executive committee voted unanimously to approve the motion. . .

The DNC may consider a second resolution at a full board meeting in Chicago in August to ban contributions over $200 from individuals who work for the fossil fuel industry. Miller said the proposal ― which has not yet been submitted to the DNC ― will hopefully lead candidates to adopt similar policies. . .

“This is going to be the way that we ask people to make some clear choices, so voters know what they’re getting,” Pelosi said. “When you talk the talk and walk the walk, that’s how you’re going to inspire people.” 

Here’s a thought: how about “walking the walk” by literally . . . walking. How about the DNC pass a resolution that forthwith all Democrats will refrain from buying gasoline, natural gas, and coal-fired electricity. Sell all your cars and ride bicycles everywhere instead. Hold the next Democratic National Convention online to save all those carbon emissions from delegates who will otherwise fly.

More confirmation—as is any more is needed—that liberalism has been reduced to gestures to make liberals feel good about themselves.

  

A great high school and the mayor who would diminish it

Posted: 13 Jun 2018 03:50 PM PDT

(Paul Mirengoff)Let’s imagine an academically elite public high school in a big, diverse city. Admission is based solely on how well one does on an entrance examination. No racial or ethnic preferences, no preference for children of alums, no preference for athletes, no guidance counselor recommendations. Just the test score.

We have imagined Stuyvesant High School, the crown jewel of the New York City school system.

In a better world, we wouldn’t care about the racial and ethnic composition of the Stuyvesant student body. That it’s the strongest it can be, in academic terms, would be all that mattered.

Here, for purposes of the world we actually live in, is the breakdown of the entering freshman class at Stuyvesant:

Asian — 613
White — 151
Hispanic — 27
Black — 10

These numbers don’t sit well with Mayor Bill de Blasio. Interestingly, though, his son just graduated from Brooklyn Tech, another elite high school with a similar racial and ethnic balance.

De Blasio proposes to do away with the entrance exam altogether. As Richard Cohen, a liberal columnist for the Washington Post writes, this would destroy a system that “epitomized the American dream and — as [President] Trump might say — made America great.”

Short of abolishing the exam, de Blasio will, for now, set aside 20 percent of slots at Stuyvesant (and other special schools like Brooklyn Tech) for “low-income students” who “almost” pass the exam.

Assuming this is a way to admit more Blacks and Hispanics (otherwise, from de Blasio’s perspective, what’s the point?), we’re talking about an increase of up to 160 such students. Add that to the nearly 40 slots actually earned by Blacks and Hispanics, and the student body would approach 25 percent Black/Hispanic

But Blacks and Hispanics comprise approximately 67 percent of New York public school student population. Thus, de Blasio’s set aside won’t satisfy the “diversity” imperative, as leftists like the mayor conceive it. This means it won’t be the end of the discriminatory mischief.

The set aside will, however, substantially dilute the quality of the Stuyvesant student body. For it will take an awfully broad definition of “almost” to find 160 Black and Hispanic students whose score was almost good enough to secure admission. (Indeed, if de Blasio were to grant admission on a color-blind basis to “almost made it” students from low-income families, Asian representation would likely increase because the children of poor Asian immigrants probably predominate among students from low-income families who narrowly miss).

But why should any “almost made its” be admitted based on their skin color or national origin? Put aside the fact that it’s against our national interest in promoting excellence to treat being almost good enough as being good enough. The harsh reality is that each slot filled by an “almost” deprives a more deserving candidate of the opportunity to attend Stuyvesant.

Nor is it the case that the candidates likely to be deprived of admission in the name of increasing racial and ethnic diversity have economic advantages the “almosts” lack. The statistics tell us that most of the applicants who would lose out if the test were eliminated or de-emphasized in the quest for diversity would be Asian. And many would be the children of poor immigrants.

These immigrants typically sacrifice greatly so their kids can make it to into elite schools like Stuyvesant. They rise early, making sure before they head to work that the homework has been done. Then, they work brutally long hours waiting tables, washing dishes, and cleaning hotel rooms. Often, they put aside money from their scant to have their kids prepped for the Stuyvesant admissions test (one family allocated $5,000 for classes for their three sons out of a yearly household income of just $26,000 — talk about a set-aside!).

Meanwhile, the kids push themselves to meet their parent’s expectations and to pull themselves into the middle class and beyond.

I agree with Cohen:

[The students] and their parents played by the rules and studied hard. Why should they be deprived — on the basis of race or ethnicity — of what they earned?

They shouldn’t be. De Blasio simply wants to dole out privileges and benefits to favored constituencies.

The right way for these constituencies — and for Whites as well — to increase their representation at elite public high schools is for parents to push their kids and for the kids to push themselves. That’s the American way or at least the American dream.

The dream is still viable. The success of New York’s Asian immigrant families proves it.

  

Loose Ends (40)

Posted: 13 Jun 2018 02:13 PM PDT

(Steven Hayward) One of the results of yesterday’s primaries is that Nevada’s leading pimp won the Republican nomination for a state legislative seat. Going from pimp to the state legislature just seems like progress on the learning curve if you ask me.

 Paging Mike Rowe! Talk about dirty jobs! First, we heard about Kim Jong Un bringing his own toilet with him to Singapore because it “will deny determined sewer divers insights into the supreme leader’s stools.” Did the Norks seriously think that we’d be after some Kim Jong Two’s?  Now comes news from Nature magazine that Australian scientists are researching “fecal transplants” for Koala bears. Those scientists must be really fun to talk to at parties. Don’t forget to bring some Olestra chips.

 New confirmation of cause-and-effect: California reduced sentences for “minor” crimes, and you’ll never believe what happened next! From the Los Angeles Times:

Thefts Rise After California Reduces Criminal Penalties

California voters’ decision to reduce penalties for drug and property crimes in 2014 contributed to a jump in car burglaries, shoplifting and other theft, researchers reported.

Larcenies increased about 9 percent by 2016, or about 135 more thefts per 100,000 residents than if tougher penalties had remained, according to results of a study by the nonpartisan Public Policy Institute of California released Tuesday.

Thefts from motor vehicles accounted for about three-quarters of the increase. San Francisco alone recorded more than 30,000 auto burglaries last year, which authorities largely blamed on gangs. Shoplifting may be leveling off, researchers found, but there is no sign of a decline in thefts from vehicles.

Proposition 47 lowered criminal sentences for drug possession, theft, shoplifting, identity theft, receiving stolen property, writing bad checks and check forgery from felonies that can bring prison terms to misdemeanors that often bring minimal jail sentences. . . The ballot measure led to the lowest arrest rate in state history in 2015 as experts said police frequently ignored crimes that brought minimal punishment.

Fox Butterfield was unavailable for comment.

  

The Kim Destiny Pictures Video: Brilliant or Stupid? [Updated]

Posted: 13 Jun 2018 11:18 AM PDT

(John Hinderaker)A long-time reader with whom we correspond frequently sent us a link to “President Trump’s Video Message To Kim Jong Un: ‘A New Peaceful World Can Begin Today,’” with the comment: “Have you guys seen this? Brilliant video.”

Scott was less than impressed and wondered what is good about it. Steve suggested that the video’s “goofy style” may be based on a psychological profile of Kim Jong-Un, or maybe on North Korean propaganda films.

Another reader and frequent correspondent sent me the link and wrote, “Have you seen this? I think it’s spectacular…and it’s giving the usual suspects apoplexy.”

Rarely one for understatement, Scott Adams says the video “might be the best thing anybody ever did in a negotiation, period.”

So as you can see, there is a broad diversity of opinion. I take it that the video is intended to appeal to the better angels of Kim’s nature, the existence of which would seem to be in doubt. In any event, here it is if you haven’t already seen it. You can form your own conclusions:

I will say that, while the video doesn’t do a lot for me, I love the fact that it is attributed to “Destiny Pictures.” I also like the way it uses the famous night-time photograph in which North Korea is dark, showing the lights suddenly coming on in Kim chooses the path of peace and cooperation.

UPDATE: The New York Times lost no time producing a parody of the Kim video that attacks President Trump and belittles the North Korean summit:

  

At last, evidence of collusion

Posted: 13 Jun 2018 07:58 AM PDT

(Paul Mirengoff)From all that has been reported, Robert Mueller hasn’t found evidence of Russian collusion. However, I have. Not with Donald Trump but with FIFA, the hyper-corrupt body that runs world soccer.

In the preliminary stage of the World Cup, host-nation Russia is grouped with Uruguay, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia. Following round-robin play, the top two teams in this group will advance to the Round of 16.

FiveThirtyEight calls Russia’s group the easiest in World Cup history. An exaggeration? Maybe. But I’ve been following the World Cup avidly since 1978 and can’t recall a weaker group.

The host nation almost always gets placed in a relatively weak group, but never one this weak. Russia was placed in a “pot” that ensured no powerhouse would appear in its group. After that, the group was determined by a draw.

Did Russia just get lucky with the draw? Perhaps. But we’re talking about FIFA here, so perhaps not.

Not only did Russia get “lucky” with its group, its schedule is also favorable. The Russian team has been dreadful every time I’ve seen it play. It needs an easy first match to gain confidence.

Presto! Russia plays Saudi Arabia in the opener. No one knows for sure how good or bad the Saudis are, but on paper, they are the weakest team in the group and arguably in the entire tournament.

A Russia-Saudi Arabia opener is bad for the tournament. Again, no one knows for sure how the match will play out — maybe the Saudis will play an exciting brand of soccer. But chances are the match will be either dull, poor in quality, or both.

Such a match would turn off casual fans who tune in for the opener. That’s why FIFA has always tried to avoid openers with no good team. At one time, the defending champion appeared in the opener. Germany played the opener in 1994 when the U.S. hosted the tournament. Brazil opened the tournament in 1998.

Nowadays, the host nation plays the opener. But FIFA has managed to produce first matches featuring at least one good team even when the host isn’t strong. Thus, in 2010, when South Africa hosted, it faced a strong Mexican team in the first game.

This year Russia plays the weakest team in the group (on paper).

IN RELATED NEWS: The Washington Post discusses the twin scourges of Russian soccer — racism, and hooliganism. Why did FIFA award the World Cup to such a nation? “Follow the money” is my guess.

I don’t expect hooliganism to plague this World Cup. That’s the one advantage of awarding the Cup to a police state.

As for racism, Russia has been fined several times for the racist behavior of its fans. The French team, which is one of the favorites to win the Cup, was bombarded with racist chants during a match in St. Petersburg not long ago.

For the first time in history, referees will have the power to stop a match if there are racist chants or slurs. Of course, the referee won’t know whether a Russian chant is racist and I’d be surprised if anyone is going to embarrass Putin by causing a referee to interrupt or call off a game due to chanting.

Frankly, a match shouldn’t be interrupted or called off for that reason. The solution would have been not to award the World Cup to a nation like Russia in the first place.

  

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