June 2017 Archives


Fifty to a hundred shots fired at Congressional Republicans during baseball practice:

Five people including the House Majority Whip Steve Scalise were shot at a GOP baseball practice on Wednesday morning.

The gunman opened fire from the third base dugout at Eugene Simpson Stadium Park in Alexandria, Virginia, as the group practiced batting at 6.30am.

He fired between 50 and 100 rounds before being shot by Capitol Police who were accompanying Scalise. The shooter is now in custody and being treated at a local hospital.

A congressional staffer and two Capitol Police officers were shot. Senator Rand Paul, who was at the scene but was not injured, said it was a 'killing field'.

The shooter asked the group if they were Republicans or Democrats before opening fire from the third base dugout as the men practiced batting.

We pray for the health and recovery of Rep. Scalise and the police who were shot, and for the safety of all our leaders.

1 Timothy 2:1-4, "First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

We'll have to see who this shooter is and why he committed this atrocity. Prominent people have been fomenting anger and violence for months now, and it wouldn't surprise me to learn that this attack is a result of that incitement.


Near the end of his "so what?" post about Russia influencing America's presidential election, Scott Adams notes:

But something much larger than government-on-government influence is happening, and I'd like to call that out in this post. We keep talking about physical border security, but what about influence security? Any country with widespread Internet access is susceptible to the same kind of fake news and other social media influence that we suspect Russia of doing. And every citizen can play this game. For example, if I were highly motivated to influence an election in Great Britain, I'm sure I could move a few thousand votes in any direction I chose. Could it be said in that case that America is trying to manipulate a foreign election? Yes, unambiguously so. And I believe it is totally legal, even if I use fake news as my persuasion.

From 2017 onward, the democratic process in any country is open to "voting" by the entire world. The foreign "votes" will come in the form of social media influence on the local voters. There is no practical way to stop any of that from happening. And that means political power will migrate from the traditional triumvirate of politicians, rich people, and the media, to individual persuaders who are good at it. In 2017 and beyond, the best persuaders in the world will be influencing democratic elections in every country. And those persuaders will be from anywhere on the globe. Borders can't stop persuasion.

The cross-border application of persuasion is an effect of a larger trend: global cultural convergence. It will still probably take a few more centuries (or just decades??), but in the long run cultures will be more defined by geography and industry than by lines on a map.


Oren Cass explains that the Paris Agreement is pointless, whether America participates or not. This fact isn't based on right-wing antipathy for the environment, but on the details of the agreement itself.

Even before President Trump had completed his announcement that the United States would withdraw from the Paris Accord on climate change, howls of disbelief and outrage went up from proponents of the agreement. But the critical dynamic underlying the 2015 Accord, willfully ignored by its advocates, is that major developing countries offered "commitments" for emissions reduction that only mirrored their economies' existing trajectories. Thus, for instance, China committed to reaching peak emissions by 2030--in line with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's prior analysis. India committed to improving its emissions per unit of GDP--at a rate slower than that metric was already improving. President Obama, meanwhile, pledged America to concrete and aggressive emissions cuts that would require genuine and costly change. ...

The giveaway for the Paris charade is the refusal to set baselines. If nations are to hold one another accountable for progress on greenhouse-gas emissions, surely they must agree on a starting point from which to progress. Yet the framework for Paris pointedly omitted this requirement. Countries could calculate their own baselines however they chose, or provide none at all. Now, per Chait, the pledges have themselves become baselines, and each country receives applause or condemnation in inverse proportion to its seriousness.


Giant corporations are leveraging their widespread popularity and public trust to pressure President Trump to stay in the Paris Agreement.

Major U.S. corporations and leading business figures are raising an eleventh-hour appeal to President Donald Trump, urging him to not pull the country out of the landmark 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change. ...

Oil giants ExxonMobil (XOM, +0.01%) and ConocoPhillips (COP, +0.31%) were among companies that reiterated their support for the accord ahead of Trump's announcement, reports Bloomberg. ...

It's also reported that Apple CEO Tim Cook called the White House Tuesday to argue the case in favor of staying, while Dow Chemical's Andrew Liveris backed an open letter by more than 30 top corporate executives. And a TV commercial urging the administration to stay and renegotiate the agreement's terms featured the names of CEOs like Musk, JPMorgan's Jamie Dimon and General Electric's Jeff Immelt.

It's hard to imagine a less convincing group of interlocutors than these big corporations who stand to make billions of dollars researching "green energy".

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