Random thoughts of the day

♣ – Doug Wilson had an excellent podcast on transgender pronouns last week. The reason transgender theology is such a significant threat to liberty is because the goal of the movement is to mandate approval. My pronouns are not he/him, because pronouns do not belong to me. I am he/him because I am biologically, anatomically and genetically male. I live in the real world where gender is determined by science.

♣ – It should not be up to the majority party in Congress to decide who the minority party assigns to committees. Marjorie Taylor-Greene is a wacko, but it should have been Republican Party leadership that took this step as they did with Steve King. Now that the Democrats have done this, Republicans should retaliate the next time they take the House. The first and most obvious target to remove from committees: Maxine Waters.

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A few thoughts on short selling, “GameStonk” and hedge funds

There are a number of issues at play in the “GameStonk” short-selling story last month, but what this made clear is how little people understand about the stock market. Despite the rhetoric from some folks who really ought to know better, the stock market not a casino. People invest based on market analysis that stocks will go up or down. That is not the same as spinning a wheel or throwing dice. Yes, sometimes people are wrong, and lose money. Generally, though, the stock market has grown dramatically over the last thirty years.

Despite the populist rhetoric about the stock market allegedly not producing anything of value, there are public benefits to selling stocks. When corporations become publicly traded, selling stocks to the general public enables them to grow, invest, serve more customers and hire more people. Over 50% of Americans own stock, which helps them earn extra income and plan for retirement.

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Torba opens up about Parler

Gab CEO Andrew Torba posted a long thread about Parler on his page, and also on Twitter. I pasted the text below.

https://gab.com/a/posts/105681061666273218

https://twitter.com/getongab/status/1357820690964054027

Now that John Matze has been ousted by the Mercers, perhaps it’s time to speak a little more freely about Parler.

Was Parler a GOP establishment attempt to subvert the work Gab has been doing for 5+ years and data mine conservatives? Good question!

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A sadly needed defense of free speech

When a journalism professor at Indiana University declared that we need “the abandonment of the marketplace theory in favor of one that regulates speech in service to its overarching importance,” it became more clear than ever that free speech is in serious danger. Those in journalism ought to be the first people defending free speech, and we heard many warnings over the alleged “threat” that President Trump represented to the free press. Democracy dies in darkness, right?

Make no mistake about it: This is not about “violent” content, where people are planning or advocating specific acts of violence and mayhem. “Lazziez-faire” platforms like MeWe, Telegram, Gab and Parler all ban explicit threats of violence. No, this is about eliminating dissent. That is why pundits at CNN are openly calling for cable providers to drop not only Newsmax and One America News, but also Fox News Channel – which had up until recently been consistently the top rated cable television news network.

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Do the no-brainers first

This post on Facebook is worth repeating:

It would be smart to split the city’s planned annexation into phases instead of one big lump. Some of it makes sense, and by that I mean the “islands” of unincorporated areas within the city.

Those areas are consistently ignored when roads need plowed. I have seen it myself and personally driven on those neglected streets. Just from a public safety perspective, it makes sense.

So why not do the “no brainers” first, instead of one omnibus annexation plan?

Of course, the unincorporated islands won’t pay as much in property taxes. This was always about greed.

There are a wide variety of opinions about COVID-19

Pay very close attention, because this is important: Saying that we overreacted to the COVID-19 pandemic is not the same as saying we should have done nothing.

There is a wide diversity of opinion on how we should have reacted to COVID-19. Yes, there were some people who denied that the virus was serious and opposed every public health measure. There are others who supported some of the policies but thought others were too heavy-handed. There are still others who supported most policy but opposed only the most draconian measures, and there are still others who support every policy and think more needs to be done. In fact, within each policy – gathering limits, mask mandates, closing schools and closing businesses – there are a wide variety of opinions on each.

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Looking back at the impeachment of Bill Clinton

Impeaching Bill Clinton in 1998 was the right thing to do. It was the right thing to do not because of perjury and subornation of perjury, but for the sin of adultery and betraying his wife.

Make no mistake: The scandal that defined President Clinton’s second term was about sex, not about perjury. Many Republicans fell into the trap of denying that the scandal was about sex, and I committed the same error. The most important promise a man can make is his vow to remain faithful to his wife. A man who will betray his wife and expose her to national public embarrassment, as well as betray his daughter is someone who cannot be trusted to remain in office. He should have been convicted in the Senate.

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A Stalinist response

I have been opposed to “cancel culture” for a long time, well before the term became commonly used. I wrote this letter to the editor nearly 20 years ago. I edited a line in the letter as published for clarity.

Bloomington Herald-Times, May 1, 2001

To the editor:

When our founding Fathers enshrined our right to free speech in the First Amendment, they specifically had political speech in mind. Unfortunately, extremists have been attempting to severely limit our constitutional and moral right to free speech. We have seen this at the national level with “campaign finance reform”, and at the local level with attempts to regulate political yard signs.

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