Today's Takes: Friday, August 13

Today's Takes: Friday, August 13

Vol. I, No. 67 • A Journal of Freedom • Field of Dreams • Woke-acracy • Total Recall • End the Case Count • William Tell • Much More!


More on Biden's oil idiocy below, but first, some good news:

Walt Whitman said of baseball in 1888, "America’s game: has the snap, go, fling, of the American atmosphere—belongs as much to our institutions, fits into them as significantly, as our constitutions, laws: is just as important in the sum total of our historic life. It is the place where memory gathers."

Baseball is "America's Pastime". It is etched into the cultural firmament. Popular parlance accords euphemisms to its rules and intricacies ("out to left field", "three strikes you're out", etc.). It stands as one of, if not the, first wholly American cultural institution. The game lends itself to unique forms of personal expression from Hideo Nomo's zen-like windup to Dontrelle Willis' careening, coordinated lunge towards the plate to Mark McGuire's scythe-like swing and became the country's first cultural export spreading rapidly to Japan and Latin America soon after its inception.

During the early 20th century, a country comprised of many different ethnic and religious groups—with no shared history or aristocracy to look up to—found common ground in the sport. Baseball, with its pastoral stadiums set against the grime of the city, inherited a role in communities from the Roman bathhouses. So much sway did it hold over the public's imagination, that it became a staple of the American seasonal calendar: spring, marked by the onset of Spring Training, and fall by the World Series.

In many ways, the history of baseball has mirrored and presaged the trajectory of the nation. Conceived shortly before the Civil War, the first professional teams emerged shortly after the dust settled. It sputtered along in various forms until the Roaring 20s when it exploded in popularity with Babe Ruth as the Jupiterean lord of the diamond representing the new upwardly mobile American Empire emerging from WWI.

In 1947, nearly 10 years before the courts desegregated schools, Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier and in the 1980s and 1990s, the sport saw a large influx of Hispanic players reflecting the wider demographic shifts of the country.

Around the time of the Dot Com Bubble, the sport witnessed its own form of artificially enhanced dynamism as juicers like Mark McGuire and Barry Bonds shredded records standing for nearly 40 years only to be denoted by an "asterisk" after doping scandals swept through the league.

Today, baseball languishes amidst the myriad diversions offered to Americans. Plagued by its own wholly unique issues, it has suffered from dwindling attendance and a backseat position in the American cultural zeitgeist. The MLB has pondered rule changes to speed the game up and, recently, decided to "deaden" balls to reduce the monotony of the sport's reliance on the long ball that once made it a staple. Swallowed by the Woke Theocracy back in April when Georgia's "draconian" voting laws lead to the All-Star game being pulled out of the state, baseball has suffered much the same fate as other core American institutions: drowned among the demands of a humorless political class bent on sapping life from anything that bleeds American pride.

But last night, the Chicago White Sox and New York Yankees gathered at the hallowed and holy Field of Dreams in Iowa made famous by the Kevin Costner movie of the same name. The game ended in a transcendent manner reminiscent of Robert Redford's famous light-shattering home run at the end of The Natural. White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson walked up to the plate with a runner on, one out, down by a run, and stroked the ball clear over the right-field fence. The scene was surreal. Fireworks immediately erupted as Anderson rounded the bases. A wide shot of the island of green in the midst of an inky black Iowa night, emblazoned with American symbolism, inspired pride. What would normally have been a fairly standard regular season baseball game, hidden deep in the woke catacombs that ESPN has become, poked its head through like the first corn shoot of the season. A flash of brilliance and beauty against our increasingly flat and mundane cultural landscape. The moment was a brief reminder of how a core American institution by and for the people can inspire pride in one's own country.

Headlines

📰 General News

  • Texas Senate Passes Republican Voting Bill, Overcoming Dem Obstruction (National Review)
  • Census shows US is diversifying, white population shrinking (AP)
    • "New U.S. census data released on Thursday show the white population declined for the first time in history last decade, with significant increases among people who identify as multi-racial, Hispanic and Asian driving much of the population growth between 2010 and 2020"
    • Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin gloated, "a more diverse, more inclusive society. this is fabulous news. now we need to prevent minority White rule."
    • Touché, Rubin. Step aside.

🛢 Big Bad Oil

  • Joe Biden Wants OPEC to Drill (WSJ)
    • ...to tackle rising gas prices.
    • "Someone should ask Mr. Biden, on his next stop for ice cream, why the President thinks oil produced by foreign dictators in Russia, Iran or Saudi Arabia is more desirable than oil drilled by American entrepreneurs."
  • ⭐️ Wayne Christian Pens Letter to the President on OPEC+ Discussions (RRC)
    • This letter is well worth a read. If I posted excerpts from it, it would swallow up the entire newsletter

🦄 Woke-acracy

  • Batman’s sidekick, Robin, comes out as LGBTQ+ in new comic (Guardian)
    • Right, but which letter?
  • Black people face ‘racial trauma’ because of frequent Afro hair discrimination (Metro)
    • "The goal is at least a 50% reduction in hair discrimination in the UK by 2025 with the My Hair Won’t Be Silenced campaign and the Power of Hair Fund."
    • A googoo gaga type initiative.
  • Adoption Success Story Simone Biles Uses Her Platform To Back Abortion (Federalist)
    • The Trouble With Being Born
  • Australia's first Indigenous neurologist Angela Dos Santos talks about racism and protests during the pandemic (ABC)
    • This is Australia's Elizabeth Warren. Wait until you see what she looks like...
  • Biden’s infrastructure bill is chock-full of anti-white racism (NY Post)
    • "The bill includes grants to install solar or wind technologies and generate jobs in areas decimated by closing coal mines or coal-fired electric plants. Here’s the catch: When contractors bid, the bill says minority-owned businesses will get selected first. Bad news for small-time white contractors in depressed areas."
    • "The infrastructure bill tilts the grant scale in favor of states with high minority and non-English-speaking populations, instead of considering the only economic need and existing broadband capacity."

💬 [REDACTED]

  • San Francisco is looking for the woman who's been feeding raw meat to coyotes in Bernal Hill (SF Chronicle)
    • Sounds like my kind of gal.
  • Hunter Biden is seen in unearthed footage telling prostitute that Russian drug dealers stole ANOTHER of his laptops (Daily Mail)
    • This guy loses laptops like I lose socks.
  • Post Malone’s Stylist Launches Dresses for Dudes (Vogue)
    • That's one way to indicate you're not fit for reproduction

🐀 Sex Pests

  • Arizona Democrat state senator resigns after arrest for child sex abuse (Post Millenial)
    • Gut originally made a name for himself as the kind of politician that gets mad at other politicians for talking bad about porn.
    • Later, he served as a founding member of the legislature's LGBTQ+ caucus. Guess they haven't lobbied for pedophilia yet.
  • SNL's Horatio Sanz Accused Of Sexually Abusing Teen Fan: NYC Suit (Patch)
    • Sanz first met Jane Doe in person in October 2000 after a live taping of the show, then reached out to her under the name "Marblechomper" on AOL Instant Messenger, the suit states.

🔥 It's the End of the World As We Know It

  • Dixie fire generates fire whirl, pyrocumulonimbus cloud at 40,000 feet (LA Times)
    • Science has spoken
    • The general reaction to this reinforces the notion that people who claim not to believe in God do, they just aren't self-aware enough to realize it.
  • Climate change is making people think twice about having children (CNBC)
    • Malthus rising
  • Seawalls protect some communities — at the expense of others (The Hill)
    • You can guess where this one is going.
    • What're they going to do, flood white neighborhoods to establish "equity"?
  • Scientists say this invisible gas could seal our fate on climate change (CNN)
    • Seeing a trend here of evil, invisible forces that no one except politicians, corporate HR departments, and clerical journalists can detect: white supremacy, invisible gas, and threatening variants of a flu-like viral infection.
  • Climate Change Is Already Disrupting the Military. It Will Get Worse, Officials Say (Defense One)
  • If every person on earth just recycled, stopped using plastic straws, and drove an electric car, 100 corporations would still produce 70% of total global emissions. (@GoodPoliticGuy)
    • Grocery store cashier: "Sorry, bud, we don't have paper bags. Manager's trying to, you know, SAVE THE PLANET."

🏖 And I Feel Fine

  • Invasion of the Baby-Haters (Atlantic)

Original Essays

🗺  Total Recall: California’s September election offers a path forward from identity politics by Jerod Hollyfield (Read)

In case you missed it

  • Anthony Bourdain and Documentary Artifice (Read)
  • Losing Christopher Hitchens by Jerod Hollyfield (Read)
  • Entourage's Last Stand by Jerod Hollyfield (Read)
  • 'Mr. Smith Goes to Washington' and the Evergreen Ills of American Politics by Jerod Hollyfield (Read)

Nashville Politics

  • Williamson County Sheriff's Office investigating heated school board meeting (Channel 5)
    • From what we've heard, a man talked too loudly, and the school administrators scurried like bugs from the scene prompting an investigation.
  • Tennessee House Speaker Asks Governor For Special Session To Roll Back Local COVID Rules (WPLN)
  • Quarantine camps? Governor’s top lobbyist dispels myths about executive order (TNJ)
  • The Nashville Scene's series on the State of Tennessee Politics (Scene)
    • No Room for Moderates in Tennessee’s Republican Party (Read)
    • A Year Out From Tennessee’s 5th Congressional District Primary (Read)
    • Glenn Funk Prepares to Face Possible Challengers in DA’s Race (Read)
    • Democrats Look Uphill at the 2022 Governor’s Race (Read)
    • With Official Census Data Incoming, Tennessee Redistricting Looms (Read)

Nashville News

  • More pandemic relief funds available for music venues; here's how to apply (Channel 5)
    • This likely helps explain why independent venues can so aggressively assert a vaccine mandate policy that will likely hurt their business.
  • Homebuyer pessimism continues to rise while some buyers may be looking to exit housing market (Biz Journal)
  • Nashville's convention industry 'looks incredibly bright, depending on what occurs' (Tennessean)
  • Metro Nashville student achievement drops, mirroring statewide plunge amid debate over learning loss (Tennessean)
  • Second three-tower project pitched for SoBro (Biz Journal)

Nashville Development

  • FBI building offered for sale for $9M (Post)
  • Asurion office building sells to Pennsylvania firm (Biz Journal)
  • Images released for project planned for South Nashville (Post)
  • Residential project geared toward artists eyed for Madison (Post)
  • Progress On Accent Nolensville; New Apartments Near The Nashville Fairgrounds (Now Next)

Nashville Life

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📅 Check out our suggestions for things to do this weekend (Info)

🎡 The Tennessee State Fair started in Lebanon yesterday (Info)

Tonight
🎸 Bully @ Mercy Lounge, 8p, $25 (Info)
🎸 Kings of Leon @ Ascend Amphitheater, 7:30p (Info)
🍅 Tomato Art Festival in East Nashville, 5–10p, FREE (Info)

Tomorrow
🍅 Tomato Art Festival in East Nashville, 9a–7p, FREE (Info)
🎸 Drivin N Cryin @ The Basement East, 8p, $18 (Info)

Sunday
🍴Friends of the Pamphleteer including Tom Landstreet (The Cameroons) and Joe Andrews (formerly of Old Crow Medicine Show) @ Brown's Diner, 3p, FREE
🌾 Wilco + Sleater-Kinney @ Ascend Amphitheater, 7p (Info)
⚡️Jonathan Tyler & the Northern Lights @ 3rd & Lindsley, 8p, $15 (Info)

New Spots

  • Lola: Sylvan Park's latest addition brings Spanish-inspired tapas to be the next neighborhood go-to. (Nashville Edit)
  • A Look Inside: SandBar (Nashville Guru)
  • 12 Events to Attend Before Summer Ends (Nashville Guru)

COVID Gutter

End the Case Count
A pro-mask mandate piece by Popular Information cites a North Carolina study that allegedly proves masks prevent spread. One small problem: the study cited does not compare data to unmasked schools. This essentially sums up the appeals to mask mandates for children. Because there is no data supporting them, data must be falsely represented. For all the wailing about not "politicizing health," it would appear that the pro-mask-mandates-for-children crowd is the guiltiest. What's more, later in the piece, stats are cited about how Florida and Texas both have the most hospitalizations in the country. As has been well trotted out, COVID cases tend to spike during hot weather because people spend more time indoors and away from the heat. The article tries to represent the spike as resulting from slackening COVID restrictions when, in reality, people seeking the cool indoors where viral spread of any kind always thrives is more likely to explain the case spikes.

The primary argument against mask mandates hinges on the lack of data justifying them, the well-known fact that children are not at risk, and a more humane approach to health policy laid out well in a National Review essay: "There’s a real danger in masking children, and everyone around them, during their formative years, because it deprives them of the primary means of nonverbal communication — the face." Depriving children of engaging with nonverbal communication cues is not something we can quantify, and thus, in the Temple of Data, it counts for naught. Human, non-quantifiable concerns are either ignorant (no supporting data) or selfish (what about these numbers).

Masking children is not warranted nor will it aid them in their education or keep them safe. With test scores across the nation sagging due to remote learning, one would think that the number one priority would be ensuring children can be in an environment with as few distractions as possible to catch them back up. But, in the "safety first" nanny state, overweight and overpaid bureaucrats seem more concerned for their own health and political standing.

Masks. Do They Work?

🤿 Here is a longer, more in-depth look at whether or not masks work. SPOILER: they don't (City Journal)

Headlines

  • DeSantis sets plan for Regeneron monoclonal antibodies to fight COVID-19 (FL Local 10)
  • President calls health workers 'heroes' after Williamson County board meeting (Channel 5)
  • As vaccine mandates spread, protests follow — some spurred by nurses (NBC)
  • Sydney to tighten COVID-19 curbs, Australian capital to enter lockdown (Reuters)
    • A nation that cowers over 2 deaths a day from COVID-19 seems ripe for conquest.
  • Schwarzenegger to anti-maskers: 'Screw your freedom' (The Hill)
  • Fully vaccinated man dies of COVID-19, daughter says he was cautious (The Hill)
    • "Doctors said the condition of the father could have been worse if he was not vaccinated at all."
    • If he wasn't vaccinated, would he have died twice?
  • Parents and teachers fearful for students returning to school (Lookout)
    • Comment from a parent: "It feels like we’re offering up elementary students as tribute in the COVID hunger games."
    • It's sad to watch parents cave to media fear-mongering. Children are remarkably invulnerable to COVID infection. The level of fear is highly exaggerated and not reflective of the threat.

Information

  • SARS-CoV-2 Lambda variant exhibits higher infectivity and immune resistance (bioRxiv)
    • As we all know, pathogens become less deadly over time as they maximize their ability to spread—e.g., survive.
    • There is zero evidence that Lambda poses a graver threat than either the Alpha or the Delta variant.
  • ❌ BAD JOURNALISM ❌ Texas children and children’s hospitals are under siege from two viruses: RSV and COVID-19 (Texas Tribune)
    • Initially, the report stated that 5,800 children had been hospitalized with COVID-19. After a correction was issued, the number was reported to only be 783. Quite the correction. Appears we don't have a problem after all.

Opinion

Window to the Past

🍸 A New York Times opinion column from 1984 which offers a spirited defense of drunk driving (Read)

One Good Read

🏹 🍎 There's a reason the legend of William Tell has lived in our imaginations for 700 years: Every generation lives this story to one degree or another. (Read)

The War on Data

🔢 Excerpt from 'The Assault on Empiricism' in Tablet Magazine (Read):

"A well-run and large-N study from the Skeptic Research Center in February 2021 found that 54% of Americans who “identify as very liberal” believe that the average number of unarmed Black men killed annually by U.S. police is somewhere between “about 1,000” and “more than 10,000.” A major empirical survey conducted by the political scientist Eric Kaufman in April 2021 found that 80% of African Americans and 60% of educated white liberals believe that more young Black men die annually at the hands of police than in car wrecks. The actual number of unarmed Black men killed by police last year was 17."

Palette Cleanser

🎇 From the Field of Dreams in Iowa, the White Sox and Yankees game ended with a brilliant walk-off home run (Watch)

Have a great weekend!