ISIS isn't the worst terrorist group

All the campaign talk about ISIS...and they're not top of the threat list. But we don't care about Nigeria as much as we do about the Middle East, for oily reasons.

The World’s Deadliest Terrorist Group (The Atlantic)

The 2015 Global Terrorism Index, published by the Institute for Economics & Peace, found that Boko Haram, the Nigerian jihadist group, was responsible for 6,644 deaths in 2014, compared with 6,073 at the hands of ISIS. Boko Haram, which was founded in 2002 as an Islamist movement against Western education and morphed into an armed insurgency in 2009, has rapidly expanded its scope and ambitions over the past two years, achieving international notoriety in the spring of 2014 by kidnapping more than 200 schoolgirls. Much like ISIS, the organization controls territory in Nigeria (although it has lost some of it over the past year) and has declared a caliphate in that territory.

Hitler has only got one ball. And cushy treatment in jail

Newly published prison records show that Hitler and fellow Nazis got special treatment in prison after the "Beer Hall Putsch"...and also seem to confirm an old joke/rumor about Adolph's genitals.

Records show Hitler enjoyed special treatment in prison (Yahoo News)

Fleischmann's 552-page book also appears to confirm a British WWII-era joke about Hitler. A doctor who examined Hitler on his arrival in Landsberg recorded that the Nazi leader was "healthy, strong" but suffered from an undescended right testicle, also known as unilateral cryptorchidism. The congenital condition can increase the chances of infertility.

Clinton polling behind Rubio, even with Carson, Trump, Cruz

The error for the poll is given as 2.8%, but the results are given to whole numbers; taking it as 3% Clinton is in a statistical dead head with Trump and Cruz. And Clinton's positives are not going to increase, while Rubio and Cruz have room to make converts among independents. Yet the Democratic leadership seems bound and determined to climb on board this sinking ship.

General Election Presidential Matches Close; America Pulling for Spartans

Obama misses how Dems abandoned working class in 1970s

What Obama, and the Democrats in general, seem to be missing here is that there is a reason that these working class folks (mostly white) have such anxiety and even resentment towards the Democrats. Once upon a time the Dems were the party of the "working man" but they abandoned that to play identity politics starting around the 1970s.

And it's a shame, because of course the oppression of the working class is of a piece with racism, sexism, and homophobia; but the patrician "limousine liberals" who fund the Democratic machine aren't disposed to look too deeply into economic inequality or to question capitalism. Thus the party's rightward drift on matters of economics even as it pulls for minority rights (usually properly, but sometimes falling into the trap if authoritarian progressivism: "hate speech" laws, political correctness, and the like). And so the white working class is ripe pickings for a flim-flam by the owning class -- i.e., the Republican Party as we know it today.

Obama Accuses Trump of Exploiting Working-Class Fears (www.nytimes.com)

President Obama said in a radio interview that began airing on Monday that Donald J. Trump, a leading contender for the Republican presidential nomination, was exploiting the resentment and anxieties of working-class men to boost his campaign. Mr. Obama also argued that some of the scorn directed at him personally stemmed from the fact that he is the first African-American to hold the White House.

Cop privilege is real, a matter of contract

I've posted before about the idea of "police privilege", how the system gives special rights to police in a way that's in direct contraction to the "Peelean principles" that are supposed to be at the heart of the profession. This is a good look at how these privileges are actually written into contracts. Seems to me someone ought to bring federal lawsuits under the equal protection clause for this nonsense; a cop accused of a crime should get the same treatment as anyone else. (Which in most cases means we should give the accused better treatment more than treating cops accused of crimes worse.)

9 ways police have more protections than you do when they're arrested (Mother Jones)

Earlier this month, four activists affiliated with the Black Lives Matter movement launched Check the Police, a database of police union contracts from departments in 50 cities. After scrutinizing the documents, the project's creators identified four key provisions by which the contracts shield officers from accountability, or receive rights and courtesies not available to most civilian suspects. These common provisions stipulate:

"DNC Is Nothing More Than An Arm For The Clinton Campaign" - Jim Webb

Well, duh. That's been obvious for some time now. The problem is that Sanders has been giving the Democratic leadership credibility by playing their game, rather then tearing down the whole rotten, corrupt, undemocratic, and infantilizing two-party system. It's no good making a deal with the devil and then acting surprised when he double-crosses you.

Jim Webb: ‘The DNC Is Nothing More Than An Arm For The Clinton Campaign’ (The Daily Caller)

Former Democratic presidential candidate and Virginia senator Jim Webb backed Bernie Sanders in his fight with the Democratic National Committee on Friday, saying: “Good for Bernie. The DNC is nothing more than an arm for the Clinton campaign.”

Good for Bernie. The DNC is nothing more than an arm for the Clinton campaign. https://t.co/nI0Ua2BPwE

— Jim Webb (@JimWebbUSA) December 18, 2015

Sanders more electable than Clinton, Dems ignore this, are doomed.

The Democrats seem bound and determined to nominate a candidate who will guarantee high turnout for the GOP and who has little support with independents. The GOP -- once the Trump bubble bursts, as it will -- will probably nominate someone quite a bit younger and more charismatic than Clinton, and will spend a few years in the wilderness with the White House, the Senate, the House, and the majority of states under Republican control -- and no one to blame for it but themselves.

Who's Spoiling Now? Polling Indicates That Democrats Underrate Sanders' Electability at Their Peril (The Huffington Post)

The Q-Poll findings: "Sanders does just as well [as Clinton against Rubio], or even better, against [the other] top Republicans [Trump, Carson,and Cruz]." Against each of the latter three, Sanders' winning margin exceeds Clinton's by an additional 2%, 3% and 5% respectively, compared to a survey margin of error of +/- 2.6%.

It is by just such narrow margins that modern elections are won or lost. For example Slate opines it to be "a sign of how accustomed we've become to razor-thin margins of victory that Obama's 2.3-percent popular-vote victory [in 2012] seems almost like a rout...[T]hree out of four of our last elections have been decided by a popular-vote margin of less than 3 percent" which, the author observes, "best resembles the Gilded Age" when choice was similarly limited to pluto-Dum and pluto-Dem candidates.

Sanders' additional margin of safety places him beyond the margin of polling error around which Clinton's fluctuating numbers for her Republican match-ups are more commonly found. Sanders' numbers also seem "almost like a rout" compared to a toss-up for Clinton.

Democratic voters therefore have it exactly backwards. It is Sanders that should be attracting their near certain (87%) confidence of victory next November now accorded Clinton, while their doubts about a Sanders toss-up (49%) should properly attach to Clinton. Democrats are not just misinformed, but grossly misinformed, about the key issue of whether Clinton or Sanders will more likely win against Republicans.

Bruce Schneier on "CYA Security"

The inimitable Bruce Schneier just posted about how the response to the LA bomb theats was an incident of "CYA security" -- the purpose of which is not to make a community more secure but to insulate authorities from blame: He first discussed that topic back in 2007, and the post remains all to relevant:

CYA Security - Schneier on Security (www.schneier.com)

If someone left a backpack full of explosives in a crowded movie theater, or detonated a truck bomb in the middle of a tunnel, no one would demand to know why the police hadn't noticed it beforehand. But if a weird device with blinking lights and wires turned out to be a bomb -- what every movie bomb looks like -- there would be inquiries and demands for resignations. It took the police two weeks to notice the Mooninite blinkies, but once they did, they overreacted because their jobs were at stake.

This is "Cover Your Ass" security, and unfortunately it's very common.

Flint, Michigan declares lead poisoning emergency

In Flint, Mich., there’s so much lead in children’s blood that a state of emergency is declared (Washington Post)

The mayor — elected after her predecessor, Dayne Walling, experienced fallout from his administration’s handling of the water problems — said in the statement that she was seeking support from the federal government to deal with the “irreversible” effects of lead exposure on the city’s children. Weaver thinks that these health consequences will lead to a greater need for special education and mental health services, as well as developments in the juvenile justice system.

“Do we meet the criteria [for a disaster area]? I don’t know,” she told Michigan Live. But Weaver doesn’t think the city can receive the help it needs without alerting federal officials to the urgency of the matter.

...

Rubio polling ahead of Clinton, is even among young voters

Nominating Clinton is suicide for the Dems, but they seem determined to do it.

Why Young Voters May Choose Marco Rubio Over Hillary Clinton (Slate Magazine)

As with other groups that lean Democratic, Rubio doesn’t have to win young voters. He just can’t afford to lose them all....

A new NBC poll reveals just that. The headline number shows the Florida senator with the win: At this moment, if all adults had to choose, Rubio would beat Clinton, 48 percent to 45 percent. And while Clinton has an advantage with blacks and Latinos, she ties Rubio among Americans who are 18 to 34 years old, 45 percent to 45 percent....[I]t comes as Team Clinton fights for support among millennials—and young women in particular—who aren’t thrilled with Hillary, even as she vies to be the first female president.

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