Gimme, Gimme, Gimme

That’s what French unions are demanding with their strikes against French President Emmanuel Macron’s and French Prime Minister Édouard Philippe’s plans to streamline, standardize, and otherwise reduce the cost to French taxpayers of France’s byzantine pension system.

Never mind that the pension system consists of 42 different pension plans or that French civil servants insist that they are, somehow, special and so should have special perquisites unavailable to petty private sector workers.

Trains, subways, and buses were still severely curtailed on Friday, and hundreds of domestic and regional flights were canceled. There were no demonstrations on Friday, but unions have warned the strike could last days and become one of the biggest in France in over two decades.

YGTBSM

Congressman Al Green (D, TX) is upset that, of all of the law professor witnesses testifying at Wednesday’s Jerry Nadler-run (D, NY) Judiciary Committee impeachment hearing, not one of them was “a person of color.” In his upset, he actually said this on the House floor before the Committee began its round of the Progressive-Democrats’ inquisition:

It hurts my heart, Mr Speaker, to see the Judiciary Committee hearing experts on the topic of impeachment—one of the seminal issues of this Congress—hearing experts…and not one person of color among the experts.
What subliminal message are we sending to the world when we have experts but not one person of color? Are we saying that there are no people of color who are experts on this topic of impeachment?

Head in the Sand?

Volkswagen is building cars in Xinjiang, People’s Republic of China.  You know Xinjiang, the “semi-autonomous” region of the PRC that’s home to tens millions of Muslims and to President Xi Jinping’s “reeducation” camps, Mao-ist internment camps for millions of those Muslims, a people of whom Xi disapproves.

VW thinks all of that is jake.

Speaking with DW on Tuesday, the company said its 2012 decision to open the Urumqi facility was “based purely on economics.” VW says it expects “further economic growth in the region over the coming years.”

Nuclear Disarmament

Pope Francis wants it—completely, totally, for any purpose, even deterrence (assuming, for now, that this can be done verifiably and verifiably maintained).  The Pope thinks an arms race involving nuclear weapons adds to the danger of their existence, never minding the race, at least on the US’ part, is for self-defense and the defense of our friends and allies—the very purpose of NATO stationing nuclear weapons in Europe, for instance.

The Pope, though, avoided addressing how a non-nuclear nation with a small conventional military establishment would defend itself against an aggressively acquisitive non-nuclear nation with a large military establishment.  Like, say, the Soviet Union against the nations of Europe, individually or collectively. Or like, perhaps, the People’s Republic of China against the Republic of Korea or Japan—or us.

Rule of Law and Roe

There’s a Letter to the Editor in a recent Wall Street Journal that “explains” why his DAGA organization is against Pro-Life Attorneys General.  The man’s letter centers on the proposition that

Roe v Wade is settled law.

Wow. The hysteria is strong in this one. Of course, no law is “settled.” Not even our Constitution, in which Sean Rankin, the letter-writer, so piously cloaked himself, is settled; that’s clear in and from the existence of Article V and all those Amendments.

The Coming End to the Crisis in Hong Kong

The Wall Street Journal, in its piece on the latest and bloodiest overreaction by the People’s Republic of China’s President Xi Jiping to the protests in Hong Kong, asked how “the Hong Kong crisis can be deescalated.”

It will be in the same way that the Tiananmen Square crisis was deescalated; this is made clear by Chinese Defense Ministry spokesman Colonel Wu Qian. The WSJ cited him as saying that [emphasis added]

[President Xi Jinping] gave “the highest direction of the central government” to end violence and restore order in Hong Kong. He called it the army’s most pressing task in Hong Kong.

California’s Progressive-Democrats

They have a homeless problem, and they seem oblivious to it.

Oakland has seen a 47% jump in homelessness—one of the largest surges of any California city, according to a one-night street count released in July. The count, which used federal guidelines, showed Oakland had 4,071 homeless people in 2019, up from 2,761 in 2017. The increase puts the city’s per capita homeless rate higher than neighboring San Francisco and Berkeley and comes at a time when several West Coast cities are struggling with a homeless crisis that’s being driven by rising rents, drug addiction, mental illness and pushback from progressives.

US Olympic Committee

Now styled US Olympic & Paralympic Committee, the body objects to being held accountable for its abominable handling of the sexual abuse of so many of its athletes for so long—indeed for its active suppression of complaints about those abuses.  The Senate Commerce Committee voted to send to the floor for debate and vote a bill that would authorize

Congress to vote to dissolve [the USOPC] board of directors and terminate any national governing body, which run specific sports within the U.S.

USOPC Chief Executive Sarah Hirshland had sent the Committee a letter threatening objecting to that:

“Enemy of the People”

The good citizens of Hong Kong continue to protest the despotism of PRC President Xi Jinping’s satrap government in Hong Kong, and Xi’s Governess, Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam is coming unraveled as she’s squeezed from one side by the ongoing protests against her rule and from the other side by Xi’s increasing demand that she get this right.

Her police, for some time, have taken to shooting protestors at point blank range, firing water cannon with dyed water so protestors can be identified and arrested for their effrontery—260 arrests from Monday’s protests alone—siccing Hong Kong’s mafia-esque thugs on the protestors.

Disgusting

On Veteran’s Day, last Monday, University of Virginia President James Ryan—you remember Virginia, the State that just went full-on Progressive-Democrat the prior week—canceled the University’s 21-gun salute part of what used to be the school’s Veterans Day ceremony.  Ryan’s rationalization (as opposed to rationale) was two-fold.

[F]irst, to minimize disruptions to classes, given that this event is located at the juncture of four primary academic buildings and is held at a time that classes are in session….

Surprisingly (or perhaps not), it seems never to have occurred to him that classes could have been not in session on this day, or during this hour, or that students could have been allowed excused absences on this day, or during this hour.