Saturday, July 01, 2017

Weekend Data Dump

I'm pretty sure this is old news that I mentioned before, but the Obama administration shut down the outfit that investigated Iran's terrorism financing network. Although to be fair, once President Obama shipped pallets of cash to Iran, that might have removed Iran's need to have a network. Much like the Iran nuclear deal's provisions, President Obama made sure Iran wouldn't be discovered doing anything wrong by wrecking our ability to figure out if Iran is doing anything wrong.

I'm so old I remember when Democrats were outraged that someone might not accept the results of the November 2016 presidential election.

I just want to remind you that leaker Reality Winner was recorded on prison phones coaching family members on how to play their role to the media. Winner worked for the NSA which taps communications worldwide, yet she did not consider that a prison monitors calls between prisoners and those outside? Sure, this shows Winner isn't the brightest star in the firmament. But what does it say about the NSA that they let her in the door?

It really is true that it is nearly impossible to kill a government program once begun: "Seventeen years after the Year 2000 bug came and went, the federal government will finally stop preparing for it." I guess it is never too early to get a jump on a potential Y3K problem. To be fair, it is mostly ignored so doesn't really cost money. But it is a problem to have requirements no longer needed, too. Best not to encourage the executive branch notion that laws and rules are guidelines rather than strict requirements. Tip to Instapundit.

Russia and other states are hiring gangsters and street thugs to do their dirty work. And this is another diabolically clever arrow in the "hybrid war" quiver? Just stop it. Saddam used gangsters to control his people. This isn't new. I'm sure other thug rulers have used thug enforcers. And you know my views on hybrid warfare. I'm sure I'm missing out on the financial rewards of going on about this as if it is a new and unprecedented form of warfare that needs to be studied and written about.

Just a note that local self defense forces were critically important in containing and defeating the jihadi surge in Nigeria.  Yet the CJTF could evolve into warlord militias. As long as the CJTF is focused on fighting Boko Haram and other jihadis, they can remain vital for victory. But there needs to be proper government oversight to keep the militias in line and to dissolve them when not needed lest they simply replace the jihadis as a different threat.

On the climate of hate, I know many Democrats say a lot of anti-Obama rage was out there. This is true. And that was wrong, too. You didn't see it on TDR, but it is true. But the big difference between the current anti-Trump rage and the anti-Obama rage is that the media amplified and supported the former while delegitimizing the latter. Heck, I didn't see the anti-Obama rage because I didn't see the small sites or social media posts displaying that, and the media didn't celebrate it. Nobody ever called the anti-Obama people "the Resistance." No, they were "bitter clingers" (Democratic Hillary primary voters in 2008) and "deplorables" (Trump voters in 2016). So yeah, the effect of the rage is different.

Obama knew the Russians were interfering in the election well before the vote. Had Obama known the Russians were trying to hurt Hillary and not just undermine our election, the administration would have done something. Which makes sense. Democrats historically never minded Russian propaganda to hurt Republicans.

It has been a long time since I've linked to a column by Tom Friedman. That is on purpose. I won't say that you couldn't drown in a pool of his wisdom. But you would have to be drunk and face down to do so.

Seriously, "Europe" as a proto-empire is far from having a serious military. So stop acting like Trump is a cause of European weakness.

Obamacare rates should skyrocket this year. Not because of Trump, but because last year many insurers low-balled increases because of the same factors in order to avoid harming Clinton's election campaign. That was a bad bet to make if they hoped to be bailed out in gratitude. Tip to Instaundit.

I swear, liberals truly believe that money is produced by the size of your caring heart. Tip to Instapundit. Don't worry. Those restaurants will eventually reopen--with robots. Bon appetit.

Jews for Jihad. Yeah, that will get you last on the list. Relentless inhuman killers can always use "goodlife." Although to be fair, these pro-Islamist leftist Jews, like so many on the left, are probably honored to be on the list.

To be fair, yelling "Allahu akbar" while killing people doesn't lead the FBI to particular conclusions, either.

North Korea may not quite have nukes yet, but they do have a lot of nasty chemical weapons. So that effectively broadens the American target list. Or does refraining from hitting them make it more likely that North Korea accepts loss of nukes (until they start programs again) because they still have chemical weapons deterrent?

Science! Oh those sophisticated pro-science Europeans!

Iraqi and Saudi Arabs should be talking, given their common Persian foe Iran.

So could we paint our ships, vehicles, and (non-stealthy) planes--and even missiles--with this solar paint and generate significant electricity?

Some are way less equal than others, comrades!

What happened to my privilege? Tip to Instapundit.

China doesn't like dissent in Hong Kong. But the notion that "one country, two systems" is inoperative in nonsense. Of course that policy stands. One system on the mainland issues the order; and the other system on Hong Kong obeys those orders! Taiwan should take note.