Monthly Archives: September 2020

NBA playoff viewership falls off the cliff

Featured image Ben Strauss of The Athletic takes a deep dive into the television ratings for this year’s NBA conference finals. He finds that the ratings themselves took a deep dive: [T]hese were two of the least-watched conference finals series ever, despite featuring the league’s most famous player (LeBron James) on the league’s most famous franchise (the Lakers). It happened despite Nielsen using “Out of Home” viewership for the first time ever »

Islands of Repression

Featured image I am not sure who said it first, but it’s true: America’s colleges and universities are islands of repression in a sea of freedom. The invaluable FIRE–Foundation for Individual Rights in Education–has ranked 55 “top colleges” with respect to tolerance for freedom of speech. A summary of FIRE’s findings is here. The rankings seem to be pretty rigorous, based on input from 20,000 students, with five elements considered: This overall »

Telemundo Breaks for Trump

Featured image For what it’s worth, viewers of the Spanish-language Telemundo network thought President Trump “won” last night’s debate by a two to one margin: Now with video: @TelemundoNews asked their viewers who won the debate (Trump 66-34).Anchor Felicidad Aveleyra: this isn't scientific! 😂 — Jorge Bonilla (@BonillaJL) September 30, 2020 I assume this was a “click if you feel like voting” poll, and therefore perhaps meaningless. But perhaps not. I »

Rules?! In a Debate Fight?!

Featured image All of our betters in the media are saying that future presidential debates between Trump and Biden must have more rules. The Commission on Presidential Debates has obliged by saying they will indeed impose some new rules on the next debate—what they might be no one knows. I can’t help thinking of the second scene in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid about “rules in a knife fight,” and thinking »

Tempering expectations about a Justice Barrett

Featured image Michael McConnell, the distinguished conservative Stanford law professor and former judge, urges folks to calm down about Amy Coney Barrett. His column appears in the Washington Post, and thus, I assume, the folks he mainly wants to reassure are D.C. area liberals. I don’t know whether McConnell will succeed in calming liberals down, but for some conservatives his column will feel like a cold shower. McConnell focuses on a Justice »

The (not so) presidential debate, a different take

Featured image My friend Stanley Kurtz has a far more optimistic take on last night’s debate than the ones Scott and I (and nearly all other conservatives I’ve read) have presented. Stanley is a keen observer of the political scene, so I was glad to learn that he doesn’t share my pessimism. Here are key excerpts from Stanley’s article, with my commentary sprinkled in: A lot of folks are saying the debate »

Trump Dominates Alley Brawl

Featured image I really didn’t want to watch last night’s presidential debate. I knew I would neither enjoy it nor learn anything I didn’t already know. But my wife twisted my arm, saying I had a duty to our readers to watch it and record my thoughts. I acceded, but by the time it was over I wished I had stuck to my original resolution. The debate was an unedifying brawl. No »


Featured image I missed most of the debate last night, because it occurred during the dinner hour out here on the left coast, and dinner is a sacred institution in our household. But I saw enough to see why everyone thinks it stunk. I did, however, flip around to take in some of the post game show on several news channels, and I was struck by how uniformly glum the liberal network »

A long night

Featured image To Paul’s assessment of last night’s proceedings in the adjacent post, I would only add this. If President Trump entered the debate trailing in most battleground states, as I believe he did, his performance served him poorly. I can’t believe he won over a single persuadable voter. Trump’s performance must also have cemented the negative perceptions held by voters who have turned against him. He carried his do not go »

Thoughts on the (not so) presidential debate [UPDATED]

Featured image Nearly every poll finds that Joe Biden began the day ahead of President Trump. If so, I think he’s still ahead after tonight’s debate, and he may be further ahead than before. Biden showed that he can hang in with Trump at his most aggressive for two hours without faltering. There was no moment in which Biden struck me as being less than fully with it. A check of the »

Your Handy Dandy Debate Guide

Featured image So, while everyone wonders whether Biden can get through 90 minutes without a Rick Perry moment (“I forgot—oops!”), take in the date of this Tweet, and tell me it doesn’t inadvertently confirm that time travel has been achieved: Meanwhile, like the touts at the horse race track who will sell you their sheets of the certain winners of all nine races, there are any number of good debate bingo and »

Local Press Runs Interference on Voter Fraud (cont.) [Updated]

Featured image I wrote here about the fact that, in the wake of Project Veritas’s revelations, Minnesota’s dominant newspaper, the Star Tribune, is running interference for Ilhan Omar and for Democratic Party officials who have enabled voter fraud. After the first Veritas video appeared, the Strib reporters noted: Republicans say that could be evidence of a cash-for-ballot scheme, though there’s no direct evidence in the videos of money being exchanged for ballots. »

Today in Maoist Madness

Featured image Every day brings news of another racially-inflected instance of someone being canceled or otherwise denounced, like evolutionist Richard Dawkins being disinvited from a lecture at Trinity College, Dublin, because someone discovered that he says harsh things about Islam (as a militant atheist, he says harsh things about Christianity, too, but that has never been a bar to his appearing on a campus for some strange reason), or the National Gallery »

Debate Rules Debates

Featured image With the pivotal first presidential debate just hours away, the opposing camps are sparring over the rules for the event. Some days ago, Joe Biden agreed to a ban on electronic ear pieces, to be enforced by a search. Now he reportedly has reneged on that agreement. Biden also asked for two breaks during the 90-minute event, a request that President Trump rejected: Joe Biden’s handlers several days ago agreed »

Thoughts on the 2020 baseball season so far, Part Two

Featured image MLB’s playoffs start this afternoon. They feature 16 teams out of MLB’s 30. The playoffs should be limited to eight teams, in my opinion, and certainly to no more than the 10 that compete in a normal season. But 2020 is not an ordinary season, and we might as well enjoy the mad scramble that is about to ensue. This year’s champion would not be widely considered fully legitimate under »

Today in Russia hoax news [With Comment by John]

Featured image We seem to be approaching the bottom of the biggest political scandal in American history thanks to the declassification of information that was somehow kept under wraps over the past four years. This information wasn’t leaked to the Times or the Post or any of the Democrats’ other co-conspirators in the mainstream media. In the latest information to emerge from our fabled intelligence community, DNI Ratcliffe advises that Hillary Clinton »

Stanford prof inanely attacks Harvard prof for praising Amy Barrett

Featured image Liberal Harvard law professor Noah Feldman probably expected plenty of abuse from the left for writing a glowing assessment of Judge Amy Coney Barrett. However, I’m not sure he expected anything quite like this nasty tweet storm from a Stanford law professor. Steve has noted one passage from professor Michele Dauber’s rant — her reference to Feldman as a “worthless shitty white man.” Dauber also claimed that Feldman was unqualified »