Good morning, everyone.
We're dripped out in linen at The Pamphleteer this morning. Linen is one of — if not the — oldest textiles that mankind has created. After tree leaves, bark, and animal furs came linen which is made from the fibers of the flax plant. After Adam and Eve realized they were naked and sewed fig leaves together to cover themselves, they probably soon discovered linen as they sought more elaborate and durable coverings. For those curious, here is a good video on how it's made.
It's tougher, more absorbent, and breathes better than cotton — not to mention that Jesus was buried in it. Linen is mentioned in the Bible 109 times. The Egyptian Pharaohs were wrapped and embalmed in linen. I could go on.
Many people shy away from linen because it wrinkles after wear and there is no way to prevent this. To those concerned with looking disheveled, I would encourage you to study the concept of sprezzatura which is "a certain nonchalance, so as to conceal all art and make whatever one does or says appear to be without effort and almost without any thought about it." Cultivating an air of unconcern in your style will ensure that no one mistakes you for a politician and will probably lower your blood pressure.
In preparation for summer, get you some linen. It's a lightweight, durable, robust fabric that you can wear on the hottest summer days. At present, I'm wearing a linen shirt from Scotch & Soda with a pair of linen pants from Alex Crane.
This is my only inflexible opinion on men's fashion aside from the rule that you should never wear a shirt that is darker than your pants.
Today, we talk about some voting bills floating through the chamber, look at apartment growth in Nashville, and toss out some red meat as we look at the Southern border.
Thanks for reading.
♻︎♻︎♻︎ HOUSE CLEANING ♻︎♻︎♻︎
Bar Hours Continuing on Thursday, we're conducting our new weekly event every Thursday evening that we're calling Bar Hours. Bar Hours is your chance to mix and mingle with other readers of The Pamphleteer — as well as the writers — while imbibing at Lucky's 3 Star Bar. The first ten people that show up will get their drinks comped on The Pamphleteer's tab.
We'll meet at 6 PM on the porch of Lucky's.
✱ WHAT'S YOUR FREEDOM TO THEM?
Voting, as a rule of thumb, is a right. The freedom to do so is a responsibility, just as every freedom is a responsibility. In the state legislature, Democrats' obsession with your freedom reveals much about their agenda and is expressed in so many ways. Today we’re looking at two voting rights-related bills.
First up is HB2101/SB1957 (Shaw-D, Gilmore-D). This bill provides inmates with the ability to vote in elections by running a polling place pilot program in prisons until 2023.
The million dollar question here is, at what point do you lose your privilege to vote? It follows that if there is a responsibility to freedom that gives citizens the right to vote, any demonstration that one has abandoned his obligation to the society that protects that right, forfeits that right. From this angle, a criminal serving time behind bars should have no vote until they have properly paid their debt to society and are reintroduced as a productive citizen.
Bills like HB2101/SB1957 do not serve anyone except for politicians who want votes. There are many examples of grifts like this.
The votes of law-abiding citizens who care for their community, livelihood, and way of life are nullified when legislators push permissive voting bills like this. These policies turn a vote from a responsibility of freedom protected by a sovereign government we all agree to live under, to a currency bought and sold by shiny promises and based on no allegiance to sovereignty or merit at all. Eventually, power is acquired inch by inch until one day, freedom is actually just a well-marketed oligarchy.
Onto HB1004/SB1461 (Love-D, Akbari-D). This bill requires teachers to register all high school students to vote by requiring “county election commissions to conduct a supplemental registration at public and private high schools once each fall and spring semester and requires county election commissions to designate teachers as deputies for the purposes of in-person registration at supplemental registrations.”
In a state like Tennessee where you do not register with a particular party to vote in primaries, this bill doesn't seem so bad, but that's what makes it sneaky and dangerous. Why? Because bills like this are a step in the ballot harvesting direction.
Teachers have a powerful position in students' lives. The student-teacher power dynamic puts unfair pressure on students when it comes to ideological views including political affiliation. Requiring voter registration in schools overseen by teachers is a step closer to schools also overseeing their student's voting on election days. Luckily, this bill failed in the Senate last week and was taken off notice in the House today.
Why pay attention? Bills like these will continue to pop up. To counteract the voter suppression narrative touted by the left, conservatives would be wise to present a way to bolster the right to vote that protects its sovereignty. Instead of student registration in high schools, the state could enact an initiative that encourages unregistered voters to register when they are renewing or getting their driver's license or an official ID for the first time. This would remove the disproportionate power dynamic and still encourage access to the right that all law-abiding citizens have in this country.
⤴ NASHVILLE APARTMENT GROWTH
- Systemic failures blamed for TN mishandling $1.9 million in unemployment benefits (Channel 5) The Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury released its findings as part of a "state single audit" for the year ending on June 30, 2021.
- Buildings in downtown Nashville keep getting taller. But how tall is too tall? (Tennessean) Since 2019, the Planning Commission granted additional height to three of the 62 projects built or currently under construction in downtown Nashville. But more requests for additional height are pouring in, and with the commission's stamp of approval, the city is growing up — fast.
- New party vehicle rules take effect Friday (Main Street) Last fall, the Metro Council passed legislation implementing safety rules and banning alcohol on entertainment vehicles. Metro Council members recently adopted changes to refine the measure passed last fall.
- Tennessee considering waiving vehicle registration fees for a year (Center Square) bill that would waive Tennessee’s license plate registration fees for a full year could save Tennessee drivers $121.6 million based on legislative estimates.
- State Sen. Heidi Campbell running for Congress (Post) Campbell is the first well-known Democrat to enter the race since incumbent U.S. Rep. Jim Cooper (D-Nashville) announced he would retire.
- Tennessee legislature passes residency bill that would disqualify Trump-backed candidate (Tennessean) A bill to place residency requirements on Tennessee congressional candidates cleared its final hurdle in the General Assembly on Monday as both chambers agreed to allow the requirements to take effect immediately upon signing.
- Tennessee legislators testify before federal grand jury (WSMV) Speaker of the House Cameron Sexton, Representatives Jason Zachary, Patsy Hazelwood, Bud Hulsey, Esther Helton, and Director of Legislative Operations for the Tennessee General Assembly Connie Ridley testified before the federal grand jury.
- Tennessee Representatives Pass Bill To Ban Obscene Materials From Schools (TCN) The Tennessee House of Representatives has passed a bill (HB1944) that would prohibit schools from allowing students to have access to materials that are considered “obscene” or “harmful to minors.”
- Here’s who is hanging ’em up this year in the General Assembly (TNJ) 16 members are stepping down. 13 in the House and 3 in the Senate. In Nashville, Jason Potts and Mike Stewart are stepping down from the House.
- Full-scale work underway on Rutledge Hill hotel (Post)
- Lincoln Property Co. closes on SoBro land, bringing area holdings north of $86 million (NBJ)
- East Nashville commercial building fetches $1.1M (Post)
- Progress On The 467-Unit Development In MetroCenter, Nashville. (Now Next)
❏ BORDERS FOR THEE, BUT NOT FOR ME!
Borders and boundaries. We all have them. We all need them. As Robert Frost put it, good fences make good neighbors. In recent years, however, the US has taken a decidedly anti-Frostian view of borders. Because it's become passé to care about borders, we typically export our "border concerns" abroad to places like, say, Ukraine where borders are very important — important enough that many American citizens feel compelled to urge an entire people to die over them.
It gets old trotting out the hypocrisy of politics. Talking about illegal border crossings is a bit like throwing red meat to the wolves. No one in the country supports them aside from corporations that rely on them for cheap labor. But hey, red meat is good every now and then.
As the Biden administration flirts with repealing Title 42, the Trump-era pandemic border policy, it wrestles with the fact that doing so would unleash an increasingly large of cheap workers with no labor protections into the US who will drive down wages, increase housing costs, and as we'll see below, increases the tax burden. Continuing to allow impoverished peoples to flood the Southern border indiscriminately and suck up resources that should go to legal citizens in no way improves the condition of the nation. But this basic reality doesn't generally factor into the decisions legislators make as regards the border.
In many ways, the import of illegal, unskilled labor is akin to the slave markets common across the world until well into the 19th-century. Illegal aliens with no protections are used to replace more "expensive" domestic laborers who demand pesky things like healthcare, vacation, and require a living wage. Illegal immigrants have zero leverage and thus will put up with all manner of mistreatment and abuse. They're cheaper, require less maintenance, and if you run out of them, you can just scoop up more at a low price. The US is addicted to illegal immigrant labor.
We're six months into FY 2022 and have witnessed more illegal border crossings than in all of FY 2020 and are on pace to exceed 2019's numbers by the end of April. As we wind down March, border agents make 7,000 arrests a day. It's looking like March will set the record for most arrests made in a month in 22 years. These numbers are hard to fathom, much less visualize. 7,000 daily arrests is enough to sell the Ryman out three times over.
ICE's 2021 report reveals that the agency spent $316 million in taxpayer money to provide comprehensive healthcare to over 88,000 illegal aliens — costs that will balloon as border crossings continue to grow. Add that to the $18.5 billion taxpayers shell out for insuring illegal aliens already in the country, and you begin to get a clearer picture of the cost.
Few issues unite voters more. In a CNN poll, 6-in-10 respondents said they opposed providing free healthcare to illegal aliens, and yet, here we are. Cui bono? Who benefits from this arrangement? It's certainly not the American people.
⚔︎ MISSIVES ⚔︎
- 🇩🇪 Germany began preparing for eventual shortages of natural gas on Wednesday, as the country’s economy minister pointed to growing concerns that Russia could cut off deliveries unless payments on existing contracts were made in rubles. The government activated the first step of a national gas emergency plan that could, eventually, lead to the rationing of natural gas.
- 💉 U.S. regulators have authorized another COVID-19 booster of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine for people age 50 and older. The FDA's decision aims to offer extra protection for the most vulnerable in case the virus rebounds.
- 🛒 The Justice Department Monday endorsed legislation forbidding large digital platforms such as Amazon and Google from favoring their own products and services over competitors’, marking the Biden administration’s first full-throated support of the antitrust measure.
- 🇷🇺 A deputy Russian defense minister said during peace talks with a Ukrainian delegation in Istanbul on Tuesday that Russia would “by multiples, reduce military activity” near Kyiv and the northern city of Chernihiv.
- 💸 US lawmaker has proposed a large-scale trial of government-backed digital cash. The Electronic Currency and Secure Hardware (ECASH) Act would direct the Secretary of the Treasury to publicly test an “electronic version” of the US dollar. While the bill’s odds of passing likely remain low, it demonstrates governments’ increasing interest in launching alternatives to cryptocurrency.
- 📉 President Biden’s 2023 budget request aims to shrink the federal budget deficit by $1 trillion over a decade as the administration looks to mitigate the impact of America’s years-long borrowing binge.
- 🛢 Two influential OPEC members, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, rebuffed calls to expel Russia from a larger oil-production alliance with almost two dozen countries, saying the group had a long history of working together through armed conflicts.
THINGS TO DO
View the full calendar here.
If you're looking for some action on Sunday night in Nashville, go see Santa's Ice Cold Pickers at Santa's Pub. Beer only, cash only, smoking inside, 3am closing, Country/Western tunes, karaoke, $3 16oz PBR, fake cowboys, real cowboys, musicians, hipsters, bikers, biker gals, Belle Meade bros, and Hank Jr's pedal steel guy.
🎙 The Tin Pan South Songwriters Festival is a 5 day, multi-venue festival with a large lineup of solo artists.
🖌 At the Cheekwood, Spanning the Atlantic, The Arts and Crafts Movement, an international trend in the decorative arts that originated in the British Isles during the 19th century.
🎙 Tin Pan South Festival @ Multi-venue, 6p, $175, Info
🎻 Bluegrass Night @ The American Legion Post 82, 7p, Free, Info
+ Gather, all ye pickers
🍸 Electric relaxation @ Bar Sovereign, 9p, Free, Info
GET ‘EM WHILE YOU CAN
🎸 Jerry Cantrell (4/17) @ The Ryman, $35, 7p, Info
🌊 The Brian Jonestown Massacre (5/5) @ Brooklyn Bowl, 8p, $25, Info
🐷 Primus: a Farewell to Kings tour & Battles (5/9) @ The Ryman, 7:30p, $55+, Info
🥁 Gogol Bordello (5/21) @ Brooklyn Bowl, 8p, $33, Info
FROM LAST WEEK
Around the Web
↬ Irreversible The Law of Unintended Consequences: Why Nature Always Finds a Way
➫ Bizarro World When you discover that you're the best Tetris player in the world without even trying to be
✸ Invasion of the Fact-Checkers Who are you going to believe, the Democratic Party’s new official-unofficial, public-private monopoly tech platform censorship brigade, or your misinformed, disinformed eyes?
Political Theater Highlight Reel
- Madison Cawthorn claims people in DC have invited him to orgy, done cocaine in front of him
- CNN Fails to Cross 1 Million Viewers in Prime Time
You May Also Like
Words of Wisdom
"It is easier to stay out than get out."