1. Kerry Claims U.S. Has Found a Moderate Syrian Rebel →

    Kerry said that the government’s successful identification of a moderate Syrian rebel was a major victory that should silence critics of the U.S.’s strategy in Iraq and Syria.

    Andy Borowitz doing a great job pointing out how mock-worthy the moderate rebel strategy is.

  2. The Worst Governments in America Are Local →

    Uber has brought taxicab regulations, unlike other manifestations of Big Small Government, onto the national stage. It has scrambled partisan lines. Republicans have attempted to turn Uber into a symbol of free-market economics that can appeal to young and urban voters. Uber hired David Plouffe, the Obama-campaign whiz, to run its political operations. Plouffe’s hire provoked a wave of recriminations from the left wing of his party—here was another D.C. sellout working for the Man. But Plouffe’s support for Uber could also be understood as a natural extension of Obama-style moderate liberalism. At the federal level, where government power is checked by a hostile Republican Party, liberalism means advocating for subsidized medical care, or funding for science and infrastructure. At the local level, moderate liberalism may in fact be at odds with regulation, and advocates of “more government” are sometimes defending an organized racket.

    intra-Democratic politics is not optimized to root out most government failure. Democratic voters tend to apply an ideology shaped by high-profile national struggles to their local voting habits; they may, for instance, associate arguments against regulation with the sorts of spurious claims made by polluters, Wall Street, or other robber barons, even if Uber’s argument against intrusive regulations has vastly more merit than the coal industry’s.

    Worth a read. While it starts with a discussion of Ferguson, it gets what the liberal position on local regulations should be. Restricted to concerns about public safety, equal access and accountability to the public. The fact is that most of the worst regulations are at the local level. Most of the crony capitalism happens on the local level. It’s not the EPA and OSHA, it’s local intrusive regulations that are a problem.

  3. Why is “libertarian” Uber sponsoring San Francisco’s giant police militarization conference? →

    Given Peter Thiel’s involvement with defense and domestic policing contractor Palantir and now Uber’s support of police militarization, we’re getting a clearer picture of where Valley libertarians stand on the issue. The government is bad… and police militarization is a threat to our liberty. Buuuuuuut, the warrior cop’s money is as good as anyone’s. Business is business.

    Pretty much.

  4. Obama dishonors the US Presidential office by wearing a tan suit →

    Obama said that he only wears blue or grey suits so as to avoid having to make yet another decision during his hectic schedule. But now it seems he has changed his mind, and picking a suit is important enough to endanger our nation’s well-being.

    Are fashion crimes are impeachable offenses?

  5. Some Self-Described Libertarians Can't Distinguish Libertarian from Communist or Unitarian →

    Pew says it could find no larger than a 5% cluster that sorta kinda adheres to what we’re told “libertarianism” is a about. But even that group’s coherence is shaky. There are obviously a lot of ways to ask questions and crunch numbers, but I’d say Pew has at the very least cast some massive doubt on all that “libertarian moment” polling from Reason.

    For the most part, libertarians are just republicans under the age of 30.

  6. Rand Paul Calls Hillary Clinton 'A War Hawk' →

    For those playing at home, there are two wings of the GOP. One that claims the Dems are War Mongers and another that claims they are Gutless Surrender Monkeys.

  7. News from 1096 AD: Pope discusses military force against Middle Eastern caliphate →

    During the Middle Ages, between 1096 and 1272 AD, popes also endorsed the use of Western military action to destroy Middle Eastern caliphates. Those were known as the crusades; there were nine, which means that this would be number 10.

    Well that can’t be good.

  8. Black People Are Not Ignoring 'Black on Black' Crime →

    The notion that violence within the black community is “background noise” is not supported by the historical record—or by Google. I have said this before. It’s almost as if Stop The Violence never happened, or The Interruptors never happened, or Kendrick Lamar never happened. The call issued by Erica Ford at the end of this Do The Right Thing retrospective is so common as to be ritual. It is not “black on black crime” that is background noise in America, but the pleas of black people.

    A must read.

  9. The Guns of Ferguson: When Tyranny Really Comes into Town, the NRA Goes into Hiding →

    One would think, given his views on freedom of assembly and the importance of democratized violence, that LaPierre would be shouting through a megaphone for the besieged citizens of Ferguson to powder their muskets and cry liberty!

    The NRA represents gun manufacturing and gun sales. They don’t really care that much about the rights of gun owners beyond the right to buy more product.

  10. Senator Rand Paul on Ferguson: We Must Demilitarize the Police →

    Does Mr. Paul think armed drones are not an example of militarized police?

    From Forbes

    “I’ve never argued against any technology being used when you have an imminent threat, an active crime going on. If someone comes out of a liquor store with a weapon and fifty dollars in cash, I don’t care if a drone kills him or a policeman kills him.

    I think the use of an armed drone in the case of an robbery is an example of militarized policing.

    From the article:

    If I had been told to get out of the street as a teenager, there would have been a distinct possibility that I might have smarted off. But, I wouldn’t have expected to be shot.

    That’s called being white. When I was a teen, I had zero fear that I would be arrested, let alone shot. I did not realize how different my experience was until I was much older. As an middle age white dude, the police are polite to me. Even deferential at times.