July 24, 2018

Blumer’s Bandwidth Burn (072418)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 7:15 am

Econoclasm Tidbits

Gas prices have fallen about 8 percent in the past 12 days, which totally explains why they’re not in the news. Three weeks ago, the New York Times tried to generate panic over gas prices. Oops.

A Blowout Second Quarter for GDP? Barclay’s has raised its annualized estimate for second-quarter growth to 5.3 percent. That matches the prediction seen at IHS/Macro Advisers. The government will publish its first official estimate, along with revisions to prior years, on Friday.

Media Bias and Ignorance Briefs

James Clapper is in the news at Associated Press because President Trump is considering yanking his and others’ security clearances. But (of course) the AP hasn’t reported Clapper’s admission that “President Obama is responsible for” ordering the intelligence community assessment which kicked off the Trump-Russia obsession.

The Washington Post  wants you to know that they’re not shills for Amazon or Amazon CEO and Post owner Jeff Bezos — which totally explains why, as of late June, the paper hasn’t run a single story on conditions at Amazon’s warehouses during its five years under Bezos.

Fact-Check Folly

Politifact misdirected Monday by claiming that it is “False” that “Donald Trump falsely says new Carter Page documents show Steele dossier launched Russia probe.”

That takes word-twisting to new levels.

This what Trump actually tweeted: “So we now find out that it was indeed the unverified and Fake Dirty Dossier, that was paid for by Crooked Hillary Clinton and the DNC, that was knowingly & falsely submitted to FISA and which was responsible for starting the totally conflicted and discredited Mueller Witch Hunt!”

Politifact’s John Kruzel disingenuously changed the subject, telling readers that George Papadopoulos is responsible for “the opening of an FBI counterintelligence investigation in late July 2016 by FBI agent Pete Strzok,” based on a meeting Papadopoulos had with “a high-ranking Australian diplomat at an upscale London bar in May 2016.”

But Trump specifically referred to the “Mueller Witch Hunt.” Mueller was not appointed until May 2017, a full year after the Papadopoulos meeting. What “launched” the Mueller appointment and the “witch hunt” which in Trump’s opinion has followed was the decision by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to appoint him. Rosenstein didn’t have to do that, and arguably shouldn’t have.

Politifact’s “False” evaluation is thus based on an utterly false premise.

As Andrew McCarthy noted at National Review on Monday (“The FBI Relied on the Unverified Steele Dossier”), the three 2016-2017 FISA court applications to spy on Carter Page were predominantly based on that “Dirty Dosser.” Politifact will only admit that the dossier was used “to some extent.”

Speech Suppression Watch

Freedom for me, but not for thee: “American Association of University Professors Endorses Censorship on Campus, Attacks First Amendment”

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