In this file:

 

·         Hanson: Our Descent Into Collective Madness

… The common denominator with all these absurdities? An ungracious and neurotic elite whose judgment is bankrupt and whose privilege is paid for by those who don't have it…

 

·         WSJ: Inside the Mind of a Biden Regulator

His CFPB pick wants a new agency to control politics and speech.

 

·         Bill Gates: Let Them Eat (fake) Meat [by Cal Thomas]

… As all statists do, he urges “regulation to force people to eat synthetic meat”…

 

 

Our Descent Into Collective Madness

 

By Victor Davis Hanson, Opinion, RealClearPolitics

Feb 18, 2021

 

Hanson is the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution

 

These are crazy times. A pandemic led to national quarantine; to self-induced recession; to riot, arson, and looting; to a contested election; and to a riot at the U.S. Capitol.

 

In response, are we focusing solely on upping the daily vaccination rate? Getting the country back to work? Opening the schools as the virus attenuates? Ensuring safety in the streets?

 

Or are we descending into a sort of madness?

 

It might have been understandable that trillions of dollars had to be borrowed to keep a suffocating economy breathing.

 

But it makes little sense to keep borrowing $2 trillion a year to prime an economy now set to roar back with herd-like immunity on the horizon.

 

Trillions of dollars in stimulus are already priming the economy.

 

Cabin-feverish Americans are poised to get out of their homes to travel, eat out and socialize as never before.

 

Meanwhile, the United States will have to start paying down nearly $30 trillion in debt. But we seem more fixated on raising rather than reducing that astronomical obligation.

 

We are told man-made, worldwide climate change -- as in the now discarded term "global warming" -- can best be addressed by massive dislocations in the U.S. economy.

 

The Biden administration plans to shut down coal plants. It will halt even nearly completed new gas and oil pipelines. It will cut back on fracking to embrace the multitrillion-dollar "Green New Deal."

 

Americans should pause and examine the utter disaster that unfolded recently in Texas and its environs.

 

Parts of the American Southwest were covered in ice and snow for days. Nighttime temperatures crashed to near zero in some places.

 

The state, under pressure, had been transitioning from its near-limitless and cheap reservoirs of natural gas and other fossil fuels to generating power through wind and solar.

 

But what happens to millions of Texans when wind turbines freeze up while storm clouds extinguish solar power?

 

We are witnessing the answer in oil- and gas-rich but energy-poor Texas that is all but shut down.

 

Millions are shivering without electricity and affordable heating. Some may die or become ill by this self-induced disaster -- one fueled by man-made ideological rigidity.

 

Texas' use of natural gas in power generation has helped the United States curb carbon emissions. Ignoring it for unreliable wind and solar alternatives was bound to have catastrophic consequences whenever a politically incorrect nature did not follow the global warming script.

 

In 2019, a special counsel wrapped up a 22-month, $35 million investigation into then-President Donald Trump's alleged "collusion" with Russia in the 2016 election. Robert Mueller and his team searched long and hard for a crime and came up empty.

 

Then, Trump was impeached in December 2019 and acquitted in the Senate in early 2020. His purported crime was warning the Ukrainians about the Biden family's quid pro quo racketeering.

 

After the revelations concerning Hunter Biden's shenanigans not only in Ukraine but also in Kazakhstan and China, Trump's admonitions now seem prescient rather than impeachable.

 

Trump had been threatened with removal from office under the 25th Amendment. He was accused of violating the Logan Act and the Constitution's emoluments clause. His executive orders were often declared unconstitutional if not seditious.

 

All these oppositional measures predictably failed to receive either public or congressional support.

 

Finally, an exasperated left decided to flog the presidential corpse of now private citizen Trump. It did so without a Supreme Court chief justice to oversee an impeachment trial in the Senate. The targeted president was no longer president.

 

There was no special prosecutor, little debate and even less cross-examination. In the end, the second impeachment was sillier than the first. But, like the first, the show trial wasted precious time and resources in the midst of a pandemic.

 

But the height of our collective madness is the current cancel culture. Its subtexts are "unearned white privilege" and "white supremacy."

 

In the name of those abominations, mobs tear down statues, destroy careers, censor speech, require veritable oaths and conduct reeducation training.

 

Stranger still, those alleging "white privilege" are usually themselves quite wealthy, liberal -- and white. These elites count on their incestuous networking, silver-spoon upbringings and tony degrees to leverage status, influence and money in a way undreamed of by the white working class.

 

Affluent and privileged minorities likewise join the chorus to call for everything from reparations to "reprogramming" Trump voters.

 

The most elite in America are the most likely to damn the privilege of those who lack it. Perhaps this illogic squares the psychological circle of feeling guilty about things they never have any intention of giving up.

 

If blaming those without advantages does not satisfy the unhappy liberal elite, then there is always warring against the mute dead: changing their eponymous names, destroying their statues, slandering their memories and denying their achievements.

 

The common denominator with all these absurdities? An ungracious and neurotic elite whose judgment is bankrupt and whose privilege is paid for by those who don't have it.

 

(C)2021 Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

 

source url

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2021/02/18/our_descent_into_collective_madness_145264.html

 

 

Inside the Mind of a Biden Regulator

His CFPB pick wants a new agency to control politics and speech.

 

By The Editorial Board, The Wall Street Journal 

Feb. 19, 2021

 

In our age of a powerful administrative state and weak Congress, some of the most consequential government officials are the little-known heads of alphabet-soup federal agencies. One of them is the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), which was designed as its own regulatory fiefdom insulated from accountability. So it’s worrying that President Biden’s nominee to head the agency wants the administrative state to extend its reach into political speech.

 

Mr. Biden sent the nomination of Rohit Chopra, an Elizabeth Warren protégé and commissioner at the Federal Trade Commission, to the Senate last week. Senators who want to understand Mr. Chopra’s thinking about the role of regulators in American democracy might crack open a report he co-authored in 2018 for the Roosevelt Institute. It envisions an unaccountable Washington “corruption” czar writing rules, issuing fines and working his will over politicians, think tanks and nonprofits.

 

If that sounds constitutionally suspect, well, it comes with the progressive territory. The Supreme Court ruled last year that the CFPB’s design was unconstitutional because its director, who is appointed by the President for a five-year term, could only be removed for cause.

 

The Court said giving a regulator that much power “clashes with constitutional structure.” But that’s nothing compared to Mr. Chopra’s proposed “Public Integrity Protection Agency” (PIPA), where the director would serve as many as 10 years, “subject to removal proceedings similar to that of a federal judge”—that is, effectively untouchable by the elected branches.

 

Unlike the CFPB, which regulates commerce and loans, Mr. Chopra’s even-less-accountable PIPA would regulate core political activities. The report proposes new restrictions on advocacy, declaring that the “use of think tanks and other nonprofit organizations to further the economic interests of its benefactors through policy research should be impermissible.”

 

more, with subscription

https://www.wsj.com/articles/inside-the-mind-of-a-biden-regulator-11613777702

 

 

Bill Gates: Let Them Eat (fake) Meat

Where’s the beef?

 

By Cal Thomas, Tribune Content Agency

CalThomas.com - February 16, 2021

 

What is it about people who are successful in one field and believe that gives them credence to serve as an expert in a totally unrelated field?

 

Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft and reportedly the fourth richest person on the planet, now self-identifies as a climate expert, and not only an expert, but a fervent disciple of the latest religion for the non-religious, which would be “climate change.”

 

In a new book, “How to Avoid a Climate Disaster,” Gates takes the rhetoric to a new and hysterical level when he claims the battle against changing climate is “an all-out effort, like a world war, but it’s us against greenhouse gases.”

 

As all statists do, he urges “regulation to force people to eat synthetic meat.”

 

Gates invests in a synthetic meat company called Beyond Burgers. Anyone else see a potential conflict of interest? He’s not alone. Al Gore, the original “Chicken Little” of climate panic, has lobbied for climate policies that limit meat while his firm invests $200 million in meat substitutes.

 

Bill Gates also believes cow flatulence contributes to climate change but told a CNN interviewer he doesn’t know how to control it. Since there are more humans on Earth than cows, I wonder why he doesn’t go after human gas emissions?

 

Like most people of a certain worldview, Gates tries to have it both ways. He says, “It’s true that my carbon footprint is absurdly high. For a long time I have felt guilty about this.” The message? You can continue to live like a plutocrat, as long as you feel guilty about it and donate money to organizations and causes favored by your ideological fellow travelers. Gates adds, “I am aware that I’m an imperfect messenger on climate change …so who am I to lecture anyone on the environment?

 

Who, indeed?

 

Even The Guardian newspaper expresses skepticism about Gates’ goal of “carbon neutrality” in a decade, calling it “a fairytale.”

 

Are we seeing a pattern? Government and “experts” have already robbed us of some of our liberties, using the pandemic as their excuse. The Biden administration wants more gun laws, which will only be obeyed by people who obey laws, but not by criminals who are, by definition, lawbreakers. Now comes Bill Gates proposing restrictions on our food choices and lifestyles while he continues to fly around the world on his private jet (like Biden’s “climate envoy” John Kerry) and presumably eats whatever he wants.

 

Liberty is fragile. When it is lost to the state and regulators, it is difficult to get back. Like the frog in the kettle story, the heat is being slowly turned up on us. If we continue to willingly bow to the state, it will think it has permission to further erode liberties until they are either gone, or so rare we won’t recognize the country we once loved.

 

In the film “The Matrix,” the character Cypher says to the agent known as “Mr. Smith: “I know this steak doesn’t exist. I know when I put it in my mouth the Matrix is telling my brain that it is juicy and delicious.” In a sense, Cypher is eating fake meat.

 

The World Economic Forum is also promoting fake meat. It says a printer can print up to six kilograms of the stuff in an hour. They expect we will get used to it, as we do over time with many lies that become accepted truth.

 

Wendy’s, the fast-food chain, used to run a TV ad that promoted their hamburgers. It ended with an old woman shouting, “Where’s the beef?”

 

It could be a shout by meat lovers everywhere unless we tell our “masters” we have had enough. Isn’t that at least part of the explanation for the rise of Donald Trump and why so many still support him?

 

(c) 2021 Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

 

source url

https://calthomas.com/2021/02/bill-gates-let-them-eat-fake-meat/