Dismantling?

Northern Korea has announced that it will dismantle “its nuclear test site” sometime between 23 and 25 May.  It’s one of several sites, though, not its only one.

Still, it’s a hopeful move, to be sure.

On the other hand, it also could be a disingenuous con job.  Northern Korea has lied before about dismantling its nuclear facilities; it also has dismantled and then rebuilt nuclear facilities.  In the present case, the facility Baby Kim is purporting to dismantle is the same site that People’s Republic of China researchers have indicated is already ruined by earthquakes and collapses from northern Korea’s latest nuclear bomb test.  That test generated an explosion far greater than the mountain under which the test occurred could handle.

An Education Failure

A Miami-Dade police officer’s 14-year-old daughter dissed her teacher at Pinecrest Cove Preparatory Academy charter school, and her father was called to the school.  The video at the link shows the ensuing abuse: the “father” whipped his daughter with his belt, slugged her, yanked her hair.  Fortunately, no serious physical damage appears to have been done, but I have to wonder about the emotional damage, I have to wonder about the quality of her home life, and I have to wonder whether that life might have been a factor in her relationship with her teacher.

Felons and Voting

In general, felons have no voting rights—it’s part of their punishment for having committed their crimes.  There also are growing movements to restore voting rights to felons—they are, after all, US citizens.  (I’m eliding here felons who aren’t citizens; they have no voting rights to restore.)

It’s a debate worth having, but a couple of misunderstandings need to be cleared up first.  These misunderstandings are illustrated in a recent Wall Street Journal article.

As the midterm elections draw closer, Dameon Stackhouse is eager to cast a ballot, but he can’t under New Jersey law because he remains on parole after more than a decade behind bars for second-degree robbery.

It’s Not Your Company

Seattle wants to charge a head tax on businesses operating in the city, a tax whose amount would be just what it sounds like—a tax based on the number of hours worked by each employee the business has on its payroll.

In response to the proposal, Jeff Bezos, Amazon CEO, paused construction on a 17-story office tower in downtown Seattle.

In response to Amazon, the Left in Seattle, spearheaded by the Service Employees International Union-backed activist gang—Working Washington—wants Amazon charged with a felony.

Academic Preparedness

New York City has a program, Expanded Success Initiative, that was intended to improve the city’s K-12 “black and Latino males'” (apparently, the girls just don’t matter in New York City) performance.  It’s failing; although, the piece at the link is more optimistic than that.

Students…reported better school relationships and more fair treatment than peers in comparable schools outside the program.[]

Socialization does matter in a child’s development; however….

[A]cademic outcomes and suspension rates remained roughly similar to those in the comparison schools.

Academics are the primary purpose of schools.  ESI improved nothing important.

Budget Commitments

Recall the hoo-raw raised when President Donald Trump signed a Republican-authored budget-busting budget [sic] earlier this year.  Now he wants to send up some rescissions to an earlier budget, with indications that he’ll submit further rescissions to the just-signed thing.

There’s a kerfuffle brewing in the Senate, and it’s not from the Progressive-Democrats there.

…[Senator Mitch (R, KY)] McConnell, who told Fox News that rescission would jeopardize future budget negotiations with Democrats: “You can’t make an agreement one month and say, “OK, we really didn’t mean it.'”

Fiduciary Duty

State and local governments are at it again.  Or still.

The value of investments by public pension funds declined last quarter, widening the gap between what these funds say they will earn and what they actually earn.  Pension fund managers—especially government pension fund managers—must make annual “estimates” (they’re actually politically self-serving pie-in-the-sky claims) of the market returns they expect to make on the funds under their nominal care.  These WAGs determine the amount of money “the government that is affiliated with the pension fund must pay into it”.

The JCPOA, Trump, Europe, and Progressive-Democrats

Most of you are aware that President Donald Trump has taken the steps required to withdraw from the Obama-Kerry-engineered arrangement whereby Iran would be delayed—maybe—from getting nuclear weapons instead of getting them sooner.  Among those steps are a 90-day window within which several existing business arrangements can be wound down before a set of sanctions gets reinstated and a 180-day window within which the rest of the business arrangements can be wound down before another, more stringent, set of sanctions gets reinstated, or added.

“It Does Because It Does”

The dishonesty of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s case against ex- and brief-Trump Campaign Manager is made manifest in the opening questions Eastern District of Virginia Federal Judge TS Ellis III and Michael Dreeben’s (arguing for the Mueller side) answers.

Ellis noted

Apparently, if I look at the indictment, none of that information has anything to do with links or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of Donald Trump. That seems to me to be obvious because they all long predate any contact or any affiliation of this defendant with the campaign.

“Not Culturally American”

That’s what April Ryan, CNN’s star news analyst has said about First Lady Melania Trump.

Not culturally American.  Never mind that Melania Trump emigrated to the United States and has enthusiastically embraced our American culture with open arms and all her heart.  She’s as American as it gets.

Since Ryan wants to go there, let’s do.  Who’s really not “culturally American?”  How about ex-First Lady Michelle Obama who never thought well of our country and only claimed pride in it when hubby Barack started gaining ground in the 2008 Progressive-Democratic Party Presidential primaries and she started gaining status?