May 15, 2018

NY Daily News: Front Page: Ivanka Trump Is ‘Daddy’s Little Ghoul’

In online news, there’s clickbait, a sensational headline which doesn’t reflect the underlying story. The New York Daily News took that concept into the front page of its Tuesday print edition. Its headline — “DADDY’S LITTLE GHOUL” — included a photo of Ivanka Trump. The underlying article mentioned her only once in passing. We should call this “printbait.”


Retail Sales: The Beat Goes On (Also the Prior-Month Upward Revisions)

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:55 am

From the Census Bureau (eventual but not yet live permanent link):

Advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for April 2018, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $497.6 billion, an increase of 0.3 percent (±0.4 percent)* from the previous month, and 4.7 percent (±0.5 percent) above April 2017. Total sales for the February 2018 through April 2018 period were up 4.6 percent (±0.5 percent) from the same period a year ago. The February 2018 to March 2018 percent change was revised from up 0.6 percent (±0.5 percent) to up 0.8 percent (±0.2 percent).

Retail trade sales were up 0.4 percent (±0.5 percent)* from March 2018, and 4.8 percent (±0.5 percent) above last year. Gasoline Stations were up 11.7 percent (±1.6 percent) from April 2017, while Nonstore Retailers were up 9.6 percent (±1.4 percent) from last year.

The habit of upward revisions which took place during most of last year has continued into this year — though so far it’s been less pronounced:

  • January was originally -0.3 percent. Now, as seen below, it’s -0.2 percent.
  • February was originally -0.1 percent. Now it’s 0.0 percent.
  • March was originally +0.6 percent. Now it’s +0.8 percent.

I’m posting monthly percentage changes below, because the Census Bureau is issuing a comprehensive revision of these numbers for adjusted seasonal factors on May 25, and I want to see what happens to them:


The raw percentage additions since September total 4.0 percent, a 0.5 percent per month average. That said, recent months have been much slower, especially compare to last fall. I would hope we see improvements during the summer.

AP Publishes Virtual Press Release Promoting California’s Solar Panel Mandate

On Wednesday, the California Energy Commission adopted “standards requiring solar systems for new homes” beginning in 2020. Kathleen Ronayne at the Associated Press published a virtual press release celebrating the move, and presented woefully incomplete information about the alleged financial benefits of this unelected body’s latest move.


Tuesday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (051518)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:00 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.

Positivity: FBI Acknowledges Life-Saving Potential Of Armed Citizens

Filed under: 2nd Amendment,Positivity,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 5:55 am

Via the NRA, published at the Daily Caller (HT Weasel Zippers):

10:49 AM 05/12/2018

“Armed and unarmed citizens engaged the shooter in 10 incidents. They safely and successfully ended the shootings in eight of those incidents. Their selfless actions likely saved many lives. The enhanced threat posed by active shooters and the swiftness with which active shooter incidents unfold support the importance of preparation by law enforcement officers and citizens alike.”

Those are the final lines in the conclusion of the FBI’s Active Shooter Incidents in the United States in 2016 and 2017. The FBI defines an active shooter as one or more individuals actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a populated area. Gang and drug-related shootings are excluded. “The active aspect of the definition inherently implies that both law enforcement personnel and citizens have the potential to affect the outcome of the event based upon their responses to the situation.”

Ten active shooters were confronted by citizens. In four incidents, the responding citizens were unarmed; these heroes include school staff, the shooter’s girlfriend, and a man who intentionally struck the shooter with his car. Six shooters were confronted by armed citizens. Four shooters were stopped by lawfully armed citizens. One citizen was wounded as he confronted the shooter. “In one incident, a citizen possessing a valid firearms permit exchanged gunfire with the shooter, causing the shooter to flee to another scene and continue shooting.” Unsurprisingly, it seems that these criminal cowards preferred targets incapable of defending themselves. …

Go here for the rest of the column.