American Education

Our public school establishment has grown enormously over the last two-and-a-half generations, even as the public school student population has grown not so much, and public school performance as measured by student testing performance has not improved a single minim. The graph gives, as of 2017, the total change of the indicated personnel and student populations; you can see the changes year-by-year here [there’s a replay button at the top of that graph].

Mark Perry put his conclusion succinctly:

Flynn, Mandamus, and the DC Circuit

The DC Circuit has decided to rehear General Michael Flynn’s request for a mandamus ruling ordering the DC District Court to accept Flynn’s motion—agreed and proffered by DoJ—to drop entirely the case against Flynn. The Circuit plainly does not trust the original Circuit ruling to issue the mandamus and so to order the lower court.

The Wall Street Journal has opined on the matter. While I disagree with the DC Circuit’s decision to retry the Flynn mandamus appeal en banc, I more strongly disagree with the WSJ‘s rationale for not rehearing it.

Hong Kong’s Elections

They were scheduled for 6 September. Now they’re delayed by the People’s Republic of China for a year; although it was Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam who delivered the news.

Officially, the delay is due to the Wuhan Virus. However, the virus situation has been known for some months, but just before the decision to delay,

12 pro-democracy candidates were disqualified from running in the poll, for reasons including perceived subversive intentions, opposition to the new security law, and campaigning to win a legislation-blocking majority.

Ranked Voting?

There is a growing push from the Left to move our elections to ranked choice voting. RCV is a technique whereby voters rank all the candidates on a ballot by that voter’s preference, and in the event the first preference candidate doesn’t get a majority, bottom candidates get stricken from the ballot, those votes reallocated in some fashion—or dropped altogether—and the counting redone. The process is repeated until a winner is manufactured out of the æther of preferences.

Joe Biden, Black Lives Mattering, and Education

Daniel Henninger explored the inkblots of the Trump-Biden Presidential contest. One of the blots he mentioned was this:

If Joe Biden wins on the basis of his current policy course, those young black lives will have next to no chance of their schools improving in the next four years.

Indeed. We’ve already seen the Progressive-Democrats’ attitude toward the lives of black children and their education. Eric Holder, the AG under Biden’s heavily touted BFF Barack Obama—and with Biden’s clear knowledge and at least tacit approval—sued Louisiana to block that State’s effort to let black children escape from failing public schools and go to voucher schools for an actual education.

Maybe Not So Much

There may be an agreement between Oregon Governor Kate Brown (D) and DHS that Federal law enforcement officers in Portland will draw down to pre-rioting against and assaults on Federal property levels. The draw down is contingent on Oregon’s State police providing the requisite protection, with Federal law enforcement support.

However, the WSJ has this much wrong.

State and local police have so far failed to do that job in Portland.

No. Brown and Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler (D) have overtly prevented the State and local police from doing that job in Portland.

A Churchman is Heard From

Priests for Life National Director Fr Frank Pavone, late of the Trump campaign organization, is speaking out, against a misleading fraction of the press and the Progressive-Democratic Party Presidential candidate Joe Biden campaign platform. At the request of the Vatican, Pavone resigned from several campaign advisory boards.

I see headline after headline, article after article, by Catholic outlets that have given zero coverage to my years-long advocacy of the President, but now want to make it look like I’m distancing myself from him or reducing my commitment to his re-election. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

Double Standards

A Twitter representative illustrates.

Notice that. Even after the moderator’s clarification of Ostrovsky’s question, Twitter considers Iran’s head mullah Khamenei routinely calling for the destruction of Israel entirely acceptable “for conversation,” but Trump’s often rude remarks on Twitter worthy of warnings if not outright censorship and removal.

But @Jack doesn’t want to impact politics or political speech. And @Jack is an honorable man; so are they all, all of Twitter honorable men.

Aside: Arsen Ostrovsky is, among other things, Executive Director of The Israeli-Jewish Congress, an Israeli-based NGO.

The NFL’s Failure

The National Football League has decided the nonsense of social justice messaging—carefully unbalanced messaging, even—is more important than playing football.

The NFL reportedly unveiled on Monday its social justice plans for Week 1 of the upcoming season, which includes optional decals players can place on their helmet and messages that could be placed in each end zone.
Players who opt to wear the decal will be given a list of names or they can choose a “victim of systematic racism who is not on that list,” NFL executive Anna Isaacson told teams

The Biden Tax Plan

Progressive-Democratic Party Presidential candidate Joe Biden thinks American businesses don’t pay enough taxes into Government’s coffers.

“Vice President Biden has been clear that it’s absolutely unacceptable for some of the biggest companies in America, like Amazon, to pay next to nothing in taxes,” Michael Gwin, a campaign spokesman, said.

This is a carefully misleading claim that Biden is making through his spokesman. Some of the biggest companies in America actually pay billions of dollars in taxes for all that each of those companies pay a net amount of close to zero. That, though, is an outcome of our byzantine tax code that lets companies—big and small; although it’s the biggest that are able to make the most of it—balance a tax bite here with a subsidy, write-off, credit, or what-have-you there in order to achieve low/zero overall liability while paying those individual billions.