Gongol.com Archives: June 2019

Brian Gongol

June 25, 2019

Threats and Hazards Canada's battle with election-related disinformation and foreign interference

(Video) It's not just America. It's not just on Facebook. It's not just the Russians. For our purposes in America today, it's important to keep the Federal nature of our system intact -- since it turns out that a Federal system designed for thirteen states in a pre-telecommunications era is actually a fairly robust way to operate in an era when we're more dependent than ever on communications but don't really grasp how to deal with the resulting vulnerabilities. We want our mistakes confined to individual states (see: Florida 2000), not replicated by mandate everywhere.

News Georgia sheriff's office seeks mother of abandoned baby

The child was discovered, newborn, tied inside a plastic bag. Communities need safe-haven laws -- and they need to publicize them vigorously.

News Australian town shuts down banana festival parade

The cause? Covering the anti-terrorism expenses was going to be too much for Murwillumbah's budget to bear. George Bluth could not be reached for comment.

Humor and Good News National security dad jokes

David Larter: "With a Russian ship docked only 100 miles from Key West, does that make it a...near pier competitor?"

Business and Finance Treasonmobiles, and why Americans love to drive them

The President has a naive and utterly inadequate view of world trade -- and it manifests itself in stupid policies like his intended "national security" tariffs applied to "foreign" cars (including those made with "foreign" parts). And where are these "treasonmobiles" built? Places like Alabama, Ohio, and Texas -- all home to automotive plants owned by Toyota or Honda that actually build cars with relatively high "American-made" components. Spend any time reading Jeffrey Rothfeder's book "Driving Honda" or Matthew May's "The Elegant Solution", and you'll realize that Honda/Acura and Toyota/Lexus are exceptional case studies in American manufacturing success. Great vehicles made very well by American labor. They should be celebrated widely -- and certainly not punished.

Threats and Hazards How do you spell "emoluments"?

"There are men who could neither be distressed nor won into a sacrifice of their duty; but this stern virtue is the growth of few soils; and in the main it will be found that a power over a man's support is a power over his will." - Federalist Paper No. 73

The United States of America The case for a ceremonial head of state

It's stronger than one might think

Computers and the Internet Cowardice in the face of...Instagram?

How a United States Senator lends his name to feigned outrage over account suggestions from Instagram is beyond sane explanation. Conservatives, in particular, ought to think of themselves as strong enough to scroll past a non-conforming opinion or two without losing their minds. In the words of Calvin Coolidge, "The American Revolution represented the informed and mature convictions of a great mass of independent, liberty-loving, God-fearing people who knew their rights, and possessed the courage to dare to maintain them."

Health Licking one's wounds

A question for the evolutionary biologists out there: When did the instinct to lick a wound start to pay off in the evolutionary tree? Is that only a mammalian thing? Are we the only ones with clotting agents in our saliva?

News Time to speak up

This is an appropriate time for leaders of conscience -- both within faith communities and outside of them -- to speak up for humanity and humane treatment, especially for vulnerable children in the custody of our government. Those who have nothing but venom to spew ought to reconsider whether they want to be remembered well after they depart this life. Leaders like Russell Moore deserve credit for being among the former; Jerry Falwell, Jr. deserves scorn for being among the latter.

News Student-loan forgiveness for all?

Education has a cost-inflation problem, as well as a delivery problem. We need to have a long talk about where the "added value" is showing up in education, generally.

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