Thoughts on the impending death of Google Plus

The end is coming for Google Plus. It held promise when it launched in 2011, and I know several people who immediately jumped on board – including some who are still not on Facebook. But instead of being a big player in social media, Google Plus is shutting down for good in April. There are reasons it failed.

The “Circles” system made the barrier of entry too high. Facebook connects you via “friends” and you can follow pages and some profiles. Twitter is more simple than that: You follow and are followed. The “Circles” was way too convoluted and difficult to understand. I am a pretty tech-savvy person, but it took me a while to understand what Google was doing here. The average user most likely just gave up. Google Plus later changed to “followers” and “following” like Twitter, but that change was too little, too late.

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Lessons we need to learn from the Covington scandal

The media’s dishonest and dangerous lies about Covington High School have come and gone, and there are some lessons that we should be learning from this scandal. I will admit that I need to learn these lessons as much as anyone.

First, we all need to take a step back before endorsing whatever the “outrage of the moment” is today. There have been far too many times where something appears outlandish, the social media lynch mob jumps on to damn the target, and both the Right and Left have been guilty of this. Matt Walsh said it well when he said on his podcast that “your social media hot take can wait.” Not only are you adding nothing to the conversation by chiming in before all of the facts have been revealed, you might be doing harm to innocent people.

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Nursing a 21 year old grudge is sad and pathetic

When Jerry Bales passed away last week, the Herald-Times could not help but revisit the 1998 Republican primary that Bales lost. The H-T has never gotten over this race. From the editorial:

What galled the Republicans at the time was that Bales did what he believed was best for the people he represented, and those were citizens and not party leaders.

This is nonsense. Clearly Bales did not represent the citizens of his district, or they would not have voted him out of office. You can whine all you want about “party leaders,” but the fact is that it was Republican primary voters who fired Bales from his job as a state legislator, not the Republican Party.

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Movie Review: The Syndrome

A couple weeks ago, I sat down to watch the most terrifying horror movie I have ever seen. It is called “The Syndrome.” It is far more scary than any dream demon or zombie apocalypse or slasher villain because it is true. Real people went to prison for crimes that never happened – crimes that were invented by unethical “scientists” and pursued by deeply corrupt prosecutors more concerned about “wins” than justice.

I was angry, terrified and sad at the same time. These poor people lost their baby suddenly and tragically and then the legal system destroys them and blames them for the death. Real people sought medical care for a baby only to be accused of abusing their baby. As the father of two sons myself, I cannot imagine how horrific that would be for a grieving or worried parent.

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When does taxation become theft?

So let’s talk about marginal tax rates, especially with the discussion going on now. Note this is a hypothetical example with simple numbers to make it easy to understand and explain.

Let’s say Bubba earns $10 million dollars a year. There are two tax rates: 20% for all income up to $1 million dollars, and 70% for everything over $1 million. Bubba’s first million is taxed at 20%. But the remaining $9 million is taxed at 70%, which means he is paying $6.3 million in taxes on that income. Adding that to the taxes he pays at the lower rate means he is paying 65% of his income in taxes.

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Some thoughts on that Gillette commercial

The issue with the Gillette commercial is not that it encourages men to be better, but that it does so in an arrogant way that leans more toward virtue signaling than a legitimate call for improving our character. For example, one of the taglines of the commercial is that “something finally changed” regarding male behavior and treatment of women, directly connecting it to the “Me Too” movement.

Really? Men never intervened to stop bullying, sexual abuse or rape before the last two years or even the last forty years? Men have never loved their wives, sisters, daughters, mothers, other female relatives and female friends before the modern feminist movement or Me Too? Seriously? This is the height of modern arrogance. We look on the past and we assume we are far better, far smarter, and far more enlightened than the savages of the past. It is a historically ignorant perspective that assumes we are far better than we actually are.

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Partisan hackery is not principled opposition to racism

I took some heat on Twitter last week when I denounced Steve King, from supposedly “anti-racist” Leftists. I said King does not belong in Congress or the Republican Party, and I said that his defense white nationalism and white supremacist ideology was evil. Why were they angry? Because I also said that unless Democrats also denounce Louis Farrakhan, I cannot take them seriously when they denounce King. Farrakhan, of course, has had a long association with Democrats. (See here and here and here and here.)

Leftists were furious that I tied Farrakhan to King, accusing me of “whataboutism” and changing the subject. One particularly dishonest troll accused me of supporting white supremacist ideology after I explicitly described it as “evil.” This, of course, is yet another example of why conservatives are complete idiots when they try to appease the Left. The Left cannot and will never be appeased. When we take out someone on our own side, it must be on principle, not because the Left hates him. No matter what we do, and no matter what we say, they will damn us. The only thing they will ever accept is total surrender.

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46 years of legalized baby-slaughter

Forty-six years ago today, seven men condemned over 60,000,000 innocent unborn babies to death by making abortion a “constitutional right” that never existed from the time the Constitution was ratified until until the Supreme Court invented it. After a decade where this nation made immense progress ensuring that everyone has equal rights under the law regardless of skin color, the 1970’s saw our nation abandon equal protection under the law for unborn babies.

It is difficult to comprehend the scope of this national tragedy, the worst mass murder campaign in human history. This is because we hide behind euphemisms like “reproductive choice,” with some even going so far as to describe abortion as “women’s health care.” We do not want to think about the bloody reality, and even many pro-life people become irrationally angry when someone exposes the reality of abortion through photographs. People do not want to think about the fact that over one thousand babies are murdered in Bloomington, Indiana every year.

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Donald Trump’s personal character

We do not need to pretend that Donald Trump is a man of good personal character (he very clearly is not) in order to support him as a political leader. It does not have to be all or nothing. There is no reason to make it all or nothing. We damage our credibility by advancing obviously hypocritical arguments. We need to think about where we want our movement to be in ten or twenty years, not just how we can support Trump in 2019.

Before I go further: Democrats lost the moral high ground on Trump’s character in 1998 with the the Clinton impeachment and again by nominating a woman very rightly called “Crooked Hillary.” The Democrats are the ones who decided that character does not matter, and Donald Trump’s political success in the Republican Party is in large part a reaction to that.

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