Greenhouse Gas Alarmists Should Support Nuclear Power

I’ve made the argument before that people who view greenhouse gas emissions as a threat to humanity should support nuclear power, a proven source of energy that can be deployed now, and that emits no greenhouse gasses. Thus, I have been puzzled that those climate change alarmists seem to be so opposed to the use of nuclear power.

Classes Underway in Florida, Land of the Free

Many K-12 schools and universities have gone to remote instruction in response to the surge in COVID cases, but Florida remains the land of the free, with no COVID-related mandates. No mask mandates. No vaccine mandates. No mandated business closures or reductions in service. Mandates have been prohibited by the state legislature, at the urging of Governor DeSantis. In Florida, instruction is in-person and mandate-free.

Crazy, Stupid Federal Spending!

If you follow wasteful spending stories involving the misplaced priorities of Washington D.C. politicians and bureaucrats, the holiday season brings a special treat. That’s when Senator Rand Paul issues his annual “Festivus Report” on the federal government’s most wasteful spending programs. The report has become a must-read for anyone needing a good laugh at Uncle Sam’s wackier expenses.

Senator Paul’s Festivus Report 2021 certainly provides a lot of examples to laugh at, which collectively cost U.S. taxpayers over $52.5 billion. According to the report, that’s the equivalent of the taxes paid by over 3.4 million average American taxpayers.

Remembering Desmond M. Tutu

Following Archbishop Desmond M. Tutu’s recent death, in reading an article about his funeral, I was stopped by its description of him as “diminutive.” Casting my memory back to our evening with him, I had to concentrate to recall that, yes, he was a short man, but his presence was immense, emanating love, humor, and inspiration.

Great Barrington Declaration Authors Fire Back at NIH and NIAID Bureaucrats

In October of 2020, Drs. Jay Bhattacharya (Stanford University), Sunetra Gupta (Oxford University), and Martin Kulldorff (Harvard University) authored the Great Barrington Declaration (GBD) to “express our grave concerns over the inadequate protection of the vulnerable and the devastating harms of the lockdown pandemic policy adopted by much of the world.” 

They proposed an alternative strategy “focused on the most vulnerable.” The GBD was signed by more than 50,000 scientists and medical professionals and 800,000 members of the public.

Packers’ Quarterback Aaron Rodgers on Science and Freedom of Choice

“If science can’t be questioned, it’s not science anymore. It’s propaganda, and that’s the truth.”

That was Aaron Rodgers – quarterback of the Green Bay Packers – and the 2011 Super Bowl MVP has a point. 

Science is all about empirical inquiry, measurement, and testing. To ensure authenticity, scientific studies need to be replicated by independent parties. Science is not a belief system or any kind of authoritarian construct. That invites comparison with White House adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci, a medical doctor whose bio shows no advanced degrees in molecular biology or biochemistry. 

A government bureaucrat since 1968, Dr. Fauci has headed the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Since 1984. Since the dawn of the pandemic, Dr. Fauci has reversed himself many times but now claims “I represent science.” He doesn’t, but such an outlandish claim has consequences. 

Aaron Rogers has been accused of spreading misinformation, being an anti-vaxer, and so forth. As the quarterback wonders, “when did science become this blind agreement and not have any debate over what can actually heal people and work for people? That makes no sense to me.” A record number of players had been added to the reserve/COVID-19 list, without open discussion of “the treatment I used to get better.” 

Rodgers has no problem with those who choose to get vaccinated. “It’s your body, your choice,” he explains. “I made a decision that was in the best interest of my body and that’s what it should be. There should be the freedom to choose what’s in your best interest.” 

For Dr. Anthony Fauci, it’s pretty much his way or the highway, with mandatory vaccinations and destructive lockdowns. As the authors of the Great Barrington Declaration note, such lockdowns have caused widespread suffering and damage. Dr. Fauci backed the school shutdowns and lied about funding dangerous gain-of-function research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, yet he retains his position of power. That marks another contrast with the world of Aaron Rodgers. 

Players and coaches often violate the rules of football, but the game does not continue until the penalty has been marked off. On the other hand, government bureaucrats can repeat destructive mistakes, deceive the public, and still keep their position. These powerful bureaucrats demand blind obedience, with no debate about what works best for individuals’ health and safety. For embattled Americans heading into a new year, that makes little sense. 

The Beatles: Get Back Is Long Overdue Correction to Beatles Narrative

Famed director Peter Jackson’s (They Shall Not Grow Old, the Lord of the Rings trilogy, The Hobbit trilogy) epic documentary The Beatles: Get Back dropped on DisneyPlus during Thanksgiving weekend. It’s a feast for Beatles fans. Unfortunately, for those not immersed in everything Beatles, the nearly nine-hour, three-part documentary series is a slog.

With a little more context, however, even non-Beatles fans can extract a great deal of insight from this film footage of the most commercially successful and iconic band of the last seventy years.

Upending Convention

Jackson has achieved an admirable and historically important feat. Painstakingly editing more than 150 hours of previously unknown audio and video tape, Jackson and his team have corrected a persistent and inaccurate narrative surrounding the most important pop music band of the last fifty years.

Spielberg’s West Side Story Doubles Down on Tragedy of Prejudice

Perhaps one of 2021’s most anticipated big-budget Hollywood films will end up as the year’s biggest flop. Steven Spielberg’s update to West Side Story had enough buzz to rake in four Golden Globe Nominations just three days after it hit American theaters. Yet, even without streaming services to siphon off audiences, the movie tanked—generating just $10 million during its opening weekend. Few analysts expect it to cover its reportedly $100 million production budget before going into online streaming.

This is unfortunate. Spielberg’s version of West Side Story is better in many respects than the 1961 film. It’s also more true to the long-running 1957 Tony award-winning play, which was inspired by Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. West Side Story’s tale of the tragic consequences of prejudice and retributive justice is perhaps even more relevant today.

How the Build Back Better Act Died

The Biden-Harris administration’s Build Back Better (BBB) Act is a bad spending bill. But it wasn’t until Friday, December 10, 2021 that anyone fully appreciated how bad it really is.

That was the day the Congressional Budget Office released its estimate of the full cost of H.R. 5376, the legislation containing the BBB Act’s spending. In its updated analysis, the CBO dropped the pretense that politicians would allow the bill’s new spending and welfare measures to expire.

Lukashenko’s Safe Bet

Using human missiles, i.e. migrants, against another state for political reasons is one of the oldest tricks in the diplomatic playbook.

Turkey’s Erdogan used it quite successfully since the Syrian refugee crisis that began ten years ago—and got the Europeans to take in a million refugees, give him money and turn a blind eye to his regime’s domestic authoritarianism and foreign policy antics. Castro’s Cuba used it long before Erdogan, for instance in 1980 and 1994, creating internal problems for his archenemy—the U.S.— and gaining political oxygen by diffusing both the internal and external pressure for change.

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