Mandatory Minimum Sentencing

Heather Mac Donald, in an opinion piece in a recent Wall Street Journal argued that Attorney General Jeff Sessions is getting a bad rap over his decision to reinstate emphasis on mandatory minimum sentencing and that those minimum sentencing requirements themselves get a bad rap.  She’s right on both counts.

“Full Responsibility”

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said, regarding leaks to the New York Times tabloid and others,

We take full responsibility for that and we obviously regret that that happened.  With respect to the release of information inappropriately…certainly we condemn that.

The same sort of questions I’ve put to Hillary Clinton applies here: what are you going to do with that “responsibility” you’ve taken?  What concrete actions will you take?

How’re the criminal and civil investigations into the leaks going; what progress are you making in identifying the criminals and the miscreants?

Mike Flynn Demurs

Regarding ex-NSA chief Lt Gen Michael Flynn’s (USA, Ret) refusal to “cooperate with” Congress’ subpoena to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee and to provide subpoenaed documents to it: he says he’ll invoke his 5th Amendment right not to testify against himself.

It’s certainly his right to invoke his right not to testify against himself, and no conclusion regarding his guilt or innocence of any crime can be drawn from that.  Nor should one be.

Safe Spaces and Clarity of Thought

As The Wall Street Journal pointed out in an interview with Northwestern University’s President Morton Schapiro, the University of Chicago’s President Robert Zimmer has a view of the nature of safe spaces and the relationship between them and collegiate education.

incoming freshmen [should expect] to expect discomfort—not safe spaces—on his campus.

Schapiro, instead, wants to coddle his pupils as though they’re still two years old.

Northwestern President Morton Schapiro takes a gentler approach.

He believes that because learning is frequently uncomfortable, students need safe spaces—which for him means places where people who share an identity can retreat, relax, and recoup.

Senate Democrat Obstructionism, More of

Present Donald Trump, as many of you are aware, has nominated 10 conservative persons to judgeships in a number of Federal districts and Federal appellate courts.  Senate Progressive-Democrats are, of course, objecting.  One of those nominees (David Stras) is a Minnesota judge nominated to the 8th Circuit.  Senator Al Franken (D, MN) is…concerned…because nobody consulted him on the matter, and he’s threatening to block Stras.  There’s no petty, precious arrogance there.  Mm, mm.  Not a bit.

Senator Dick Durbin (D, IL) is more broadly “concerned.”

[A]s long as we have the [blue-slip] authority, we’ll use it if necessary.

Hysteria

FBI Director James Comey was fired by President Donald Trump, and the Left is waxing hysterical over it.  Never mind that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein (only just confirmed after another example of Progressive-Democratic Party obstructionism in the Senate) laid out the case for Comey’s inability to function as the FBI’s leader.  Rosenstein’s memo can be read here as part of the document chain culminating in Trump’s letter to Comey.  Via Richard Fernandez:

Keith Ellison tweeted “we are witnessing a Consitutional [sic] crisis unfold before our very eyes.”

Is Satire

…a proper style for what’s claimed to be a serious, scholarly journal?  Here, via The Wall Street Journal, is the abstract of Teresa Lloro-Bidart’s When ‘Angelino’ squirrels don’t eat nuts: a feminist posthumanist politics of consumption across southern California [sic] in the journal Gender, Place & Culture: A Journal of Feminist Geography [also sic]:

Do Big Things Quietly

Which is not the same as doing them secretively.  Just don’t bruit about any wonderfulness about you for doing them.  Let the little things you do do your talking for you.

Morally, do the little things quietly (but not secretively), also; let your efforts speak for themselves.  I’m writing here, though, about practical politics, and two examples illustrate the matter: Obamacare and efforts at managing climate change.

Handling Classified

FBI Director James Comey had this about Huma Abedin and her role in the ex-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (D) classified email scandal:

Somehow, her [Clinton’s] emails were being forwarded to Anthony Weiner, including classified information.  His then-spouse, Huma Abedin, appears to have had a regular practice of forwarding emails to him for him to print out for her, so she could deliver them to the secretary of state.

Comey justified his lack of action with this:

We didn’t have any indication that she had a sense of what she was doing was in violation of the law[.]

Military Academies as Professional Sports Farm Teams

Or not.  Secretary of Defense James Mattis has reversed an Obama administration late 2016 move that

allowed academy students with exceptional sports talent to bypass active-duty and serve out their time in the military reserves to play in professional leagues.

Dana White, Pentagon spokesman, on the matter:

Our military academies exist to develop future officers who enhance the readiness and the lethality of our military services.  Graduates enjoy the extraordinary benefit of a military academy education at taxpayer expense.