August 18, 2018

Positivity: ‘A Classic Case of Self-Defense’

Filed under: 2nd Amendment,Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

From Des Moines, Iowa (video at link):

Published 1:55 p.m. CT Aug. 15, 2018

Police have identified the man who shot and killed another man in an altercation in a Des Moines home Saturday night.

Justin Adam Grayson, 27, fatally shot Joshua James Wheeler, 32, at about 11:30 Saturday night after entering a home on the 200 block of East Park Avenue, police said in a news release Wednesday.

Grayson was lawfully armed with a handgun and had a valid concealed weapons permit, the release said.

Sgt. Paul Parizek, a spokesman with the Des Moines Police Department, previously said when Wheeler arrived at the home, he was in defiance of a court order forbidding him from having contact with a female resident, who is a former domestic partner of his.

Parizek said Grayson was visiting the 25-year-old woman, who is a friend of his, and the two had discovered that Grayson’s car tire was slashed outside the home. They were inspecting the damage when Wheeler quickly drove into the driveway.

The three got into a verbal altercation, and the woman and Grayson went into the house, at which point Wheeler forced his way into the home and began assaulting Grayson, police said.

Grayson told Wheeler he had gun — which he legally owned and had a permit to carry. Wheeler again attacked Grayson, who shot Wheeler once in the abdomen, according to police. Wheeler later died in Iowa Methodist Hospital.

When the evidence was presented to the Polk County Attorney’s Office Sunday, “they determined it was a classic case of self-defense,” Parizek said.

Two children, ages 2 and 5, were in the home at the time of the shooting, Parizek said. …

Go here for the video and full original story.


Saturday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (081818)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 5:55 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.

August 17, 2018

Media-Assisted Trump-Russia Corruption Hits a Wall — Maybe

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 7:13 pm

From Conservative Treehouse:

Co-Conspiring “Media Coalition” Sue For Names, Addresses of Manafort Trial Jurors – Judge Ellis Refuses, No Verdict Reached …

The media institutions that are the central players in advancement of the two-year-long corrupt scheme against candidate Trump, now President Trump, all listed themselves as a “Media Coalition” on court documents demanding the names and addresses of the Manafort Jury …

… Fortunately, Judge T.S. Ellis denied the motion by the media.

Shortly before 3:00pm this afternoon Judge Ellis said he personally had received threats and would keep the names of jurors a secret for their safety despite the media demand their names be made public.

The judge is being protected full time by the U.S. Marshals and shared with the court: “I won’t tell you what threats I’ve received,” he said, “but I have the Marshals’ protection. Where I go, they go. I had no idea this case would excite these emotions,” the judge said.

Ellis also said that he would ultimately unseal everything from the trial except for the jurors’ names and the transcript of a sidebar conference with lawyers that he said was related to Mueller’s broader investigation.

There is some insightful speculation, based on a history of media complicity within the larger storyline, that the media already have a juror contact (perhaps paid) and were seeking the names and addresses as cover for their reporting from their juror source. Given the media conduct in the larger two-year dynamic; and considering they have attached themselves to the inherent risk of sunlight; we cannot dismiss this possibility.

The media are enmeshed within the story of the DOJ and FBI corruption. However, only recently did we discover the media engagements were not just pervasive, they were/are participatoryAs a consequence the same media cannot reasonably report on any aspect of the story without exposing their own duplicity; their only choice is to double down on lies they helped create and promote.

… The only way they (the media) could align with the truth is to admit that virtually every scintilla of their reportage over the past 18 months was inherently false or manipulated by the “sources” distributing the material for their reporting.

There’s not a single media outlet capable of doing that. …

Do read the whole thing. Even though it is virtually guaranteed to make readers’ heads spin, it’s also the best available way for readers to get their arms around corruption on such an unprecedented scale.


Friday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (081718)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:45 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.


Positivity: Life of Spanish chemistry professor shows ‘holiness is in the ordinary’

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:40 am

From Madrid, Spain:

Aug 15, 2018 / 10:33 am

Guadalupe Ortiz de Landázuri, a Spanish member of Opus Dei who is moving toward beatification, teaches us that sanctity can be found amidst chemistry books and classrooms, said a priest leading her cause.

Spanish priest Fr. José Carlos Martinez de la Hoz, who is responsible for the canonization causes of Opus Dei members in Spain, said that Guadalupe’s life contains a simple message: “Holiness is in the ordinary.”

“She became holy giving chemistry classes, being a good professor, and this tells the rest of us that we can achieve the same in an ordinary life,” he reflected.

“Guadalupe lived dedicated to her chemistry students, dedicated to souls and especially her mother who died a half hour after her. She lived dedicated to God and others, despite her serious heart disease which at the end of her life really slowed her down.”

In June, Pope Francis authorized the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to publish the decree approving on a miracle attributed to Guadalupe’s intercession.

The miracle involved a 76-year-old man suffering from a malignant skin tumor near his eye. After praying to Guadalupe in 2002, the tumor instantaneously and inexplicably disappeared.

In addition to this recognized miracle, Martinez de la Hoz said “there are many favors from people who start to lose hope and Guadalupe has given them back peace, thanks to the patience that she had.”

Guadalupe was born in Madrid in 1916. She studied chemical sciences and was one of five women in her graduating class.

She met St. Josemaría Escrivá, the founder of Opus Dei, in early 1944. According to Martinez de la Hoz, “one Sunday in 1944 when she was at Mass in the church of the Conception on Goya Street in Madrid, she became distracted and heard the voice of God inside telling her that although she had a boyfriend, he had something else prepared for her. She left Mass impacted by this and knew that was God’s call.”

“On the tram going back home after Mass, she met Jesús Hernando de Pablos, a family friend, and she asked him if he knew of any priest she could talk with. He gave her St. Josemaría’s contacts and she started to go to him for spiritual direction,” the priest told ACI Prensa, CNA’s Spanish-language sister agency.

St. Josemaría Escrivá taught her that Christ can be found in professional work and ordinary life.

“I had the clear sensation that God was speaking to me through that priest,” Guadalupe would later say.

Martinez de la Hoz noted that “when Guadalupe discovered her vocation at 23, she had a boyfriend, was a chemistry teacher and lived with her mother. From that time on, she was in good spirits because of the intimate conviction of doing what God wants.”

On March 19, 1944, Guadalupe joined Opus Dei as a numerary, committing to celibacy and complete availability for the work of the prelature. Numeraries normally live in an Opus Dei center. However, she did not go to live at a center, but settled into an apartment with her mother, who needed care due to her advanced age. …

Go here for the rest of the story.

August 16, 2018

About That Second-Quarter Productivity Surge and the Accompanying Decline in Unit Labor Costs: Don’t Worry, It’s All Good

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 10:24 pm

On Wednesday, the government reported the first good news on productivity in a long time:

Nonfarm business sector labor productivity increased 2.9 percent during the second quarter of 2018, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today, as output increased 4.8 percent and hours worked increased 1.9 percent. (All quarterly percent changes in this release are seasonally adjusted annual rates.) From the second quarter of 2017 to the second quarter of 2018, productivity increased 1.3 percent, reflecting a 3.5-percent increase in output and a 2.2-percent increase in hours worked.

Labor productivity, or output per hour, is calculated by dividing an index of real output by an index of hours worked by all persons, including employees, proprietors, and unpaid family workers.

Unit labor costs in the nonfarm business sector decreased 0.9 percent in the second quarter of 2018, reflecting a 2.0-percent increase in hourly compensation and a 2.9-percent increase in productivity. Unit labor costs increased 1.9 percent over the last four quarters.

Some observers are concerned about the decline in unit labor costs, with little support:

  • First, that’s what happens when the “units” go up by so much (an annualized 4.8 percent), which *could* foreshadow an upward second-quarter GDP revision from the 4.1 reported in late July.
  • Second, the 2.0 increase in hourly compensation is an aggregate figure, meaning that compensation for everyone working went up by that amount.
  • Finally, you have to look at who entered the workforce during the second quarter.

Concerning the third item, it’s worth noting that newer workforce entrants, especially those who have been on the sidelines and are finally returning, are likely getting entry-level pay which is far below the national average hourly rate. So in addition to the output increase just cited, people who aren’t as expensive to pay are keeping the overall cost of labor down.

This lesson is important, because the wailing and gnashing of teeth over average hourly and weekly pay is somewhat misplaced. When lower-paid workers get added to the mix (and I should add, are on the books and not off the books, as would be the case will employed illegal immigrants), these metrics won’t increase as much as one might hope.

But overall personal income will still increase because more people are employed — and it has, advancing in real terms by 1.1 percent in the past five months. That translates to about 2.7 percent annually — again, in real terms, which really means about 5 percent before inflation.

So, thanks to the economy finally getting within striking distance of genuine full employment and getting relatively marginal workers into jobs, it’s reasonable to believe that existing, non-entry-level workers are seeing better pay increases than seen in the monthly Employment Situation Report, and that the obsession with flat wages is a bit misplaced.

Perhaps this partially validates what Mark Zandi, the ADP Employment Report’s director, has been saying for quite a while, namely that existing workers, based on ADP data, are seeing pay increases in the 4 percent to 5 percent range.




Thursday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (081618)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 9:20 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.


Positivity: Tim Tebow Releases New Feature Film ‘Run the Race’ Celebrating Life and Faith

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 9:15 am


AUG 15, 2018, 12:54PM

Heisman Trophy winner, national champion and NFL veteran, and professional baseball player Tim Tebow can now add “filmmaker” to his impressive list of accomplishments. Tebow and his brother Robby are executive producers of the new film RUN THE RACE, telling the inspiring, fictional story of two high school athlete brothers who see their relationship tested as they seek different paths out of their troubled lives.

“RUN THE RACE is about so much more than football. This is a story about overcoming the hard issues of life, about the power of sacrifice, the power of family, and the power of forgiveness,” Tim Tebow said. “I love being a part of a project like this because it will impact lives, inspire hope, and even prompt action. When I read the script, I knew this was an important project to get behind.”

“The script pulled me in right away, and I wanted to bring it to life cinematically,” Robby Tebow said. “As somebody with brothers in a big, super-close family that has gone through a lot together, it resonated with me on a deep level.”

RUN THE RACE marks the Tebow brothers’ first foray into feature films.

RUN THE RACE stars Mykelti Williamson (FENCES, FORREST GUMP) as the boys’ coach, Frances Fisher (TITANIC, UNFORGIVEN) as their surrogate mother, Tanner Stine (NCIS, HBO’s Here & Now) as Zach and Evan Hofer (Kickin’ It) as David. Supporting cast includes Kristoffer Polaha, Mario Van Peebles and Heisman-winner Eddie George, along with many others. From Reserve Entertainment and 10th Leper Productions, the film is produced by Darren Moorman, Jake McEntire and Ken Carpenter; directed by Chris Dowling (WHERE HOPE GROWS); and co-written by McEntire, Dowling, and Jason Baumgardner.

“RUN THE RACE is about two young brothers facing unbelievable odds with an unbreakable bond,” said creator Jake McEntire, who co-wrote the script,. “I believe audiences will resonate with this uplifting story of faith, sacrifice and hope.” …

Go here for the rest of the story.

August 15, 2018

Wednesday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (081518)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 1:00 pm

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.


Positivity: The history of the Assumption – and why it’s a Holy Day of Obligation

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 12:55 pm

From Washington:

Aug 15, 2018 / 12:01 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Today, Catholics around the world mark the Feast of the Assumption of Mary, commemorating the end of her earthly life and assumption into Heaven. But while the feast day is a relatively new one, the history of the holiday – and the mystery behind it – has its roots in the earliest centuries of Christian belief.

“As her earthly life comes to an end, the Assumption helps us to understand more fully not just her life, but it helps us to always focus our gaze to Eternity,” said EWTN Senior Contributor Dr. Matthew Bunson.

“We see in Mary the logic of the Assumption as the culmination of Mary’s life,” he continued. “A Eucharistic requirement for that day is very fitting.”

The dogma of the Assumption of Mary – also called the “Dormition of Mary” in the Eastern Churches – has its roots in the early centuries of the Church. The Catholic Church teaches that when Mary ended her earthly life, God assumed her, body and soul into heaven.

This belief traces its roots back to the earliest years of the Church. While a site outside of Jerusalem was recognized as the tomb of Mary, the earliest Christians maintained that “no one was there,” Bunson said.

According to St. John of Damascus, in the 5th century, at the Council of Chalcedon in 451, Roman Emperor Marcian requested the body of Mary, Mother of God. St. Juvenal, who was Bishop of Jerusalem replied “that Mary died in the presence of all the Apostles, but that her tomb, when opened upon the request of St. Thomas, was found empty; wherefrom the Apostles concluded that the body was taken up to heaven,” the saint recorded.

By the 8th century, around the time of Pope Adrian, the Church began to change its terminology, renaming the feast day of the Memorial of Mary to the Assumption of Mary, Bunson noted.

The belief in the Assumption of Mary was a widely-held tradition, and a frequent meditation in the writings of saints throughout the centuries. However it was not defined officially until the past century. In 1950, Pope Pius XII made an infallible, ex-cathedra statement in the Apostolic Constitution Munificentissimus Deus officially defining the dogma of the Assumption.

“By the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and by our own authority, we pronounce, declare, and define it to be a divinely revealed dogma: that the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory,” the pope wrote. …

Go here for the rest of the story.

August 14, 2018

Tuesday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (081418)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:00 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.


Positivity: WWII pilot gets thanks from son of the man he saved

Filed under: Positivity,US & Allied Military — Tom @ 5:55 am

From Glenwood Springs, Colorado (HT Weasel Zippers):

August 13, 2018

Miles apart from one another, two men celebrated a single day in history as their defining moment.

One of the men, 1st Lt. Philip S. (Pots) Wilmot, of Glenwood Springs, remembers it as the most important thing he did during World War II.

The other man, the Rev. Thomas Papazoglakis of Clifton Park, New York, was not alive that day in 1945, but he knows that without the help of two marine pilots his dad would never have made it back from the war, never married his mother and therefore he never would have been born.


August 13, 2018

Name That Party: Atlanta TV Report Only IDs Accused Murderer As Having Run For Congress ‘As a Democrat’ Last Year

Filed under: MSM Biz/Other Bias — Tom @ 1:16 pm

… the writeup involved only admits that a former congressional candidate now charged with murder and grand larceny was a Democrat a year ago, and even waits six paragraphs (and below the web ad) to reveal that tidbit (posted in full because of its brevity):

She ran on responsible gun regulation, now she’s accused of killing her campaign treasurer

ATLANTA – A former Georgia Congressional candidate has been charged with murder after her former campaign treasurer was found dead inside her apartment.

Kellie Collins, of Thomason, turned herself into the McDuffie County Sheriff’s Office just as authorities in Aiken County, South Carolina found the body of Curtis Cain, Collins’ former campaign treasurer.

Investigators said Cain did not show up for work on Tuesday, so deputies went to his home to check on him. That’s when they found him dead from an apparent gunshot wound.

The coroner said the body had been there for at least four days.

Authorities said Cain’s Subaru Legacy was also missing.

Collins has been charged with grand larceny in addition to murder.

In 2017, Collins ran as a Democrat against incumbent Rep. Jody Hice, a Republican, for Georgia’s 10th District. She ultimately dropped out of the race, citing personal reasons.

During the race, she touted her support for responsible gun regulation to protect the community.

I guess the online voter rolls must not have been available (that’s sarcasm, folks).

There’s no way a Republican gets this kind of kid-glove treatment.


Monday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (081318)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:00 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.


Positivity: Des Moines Police Say No Charges Likely in Fatal Shooting

Filed under: 2nd Amendment,Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

From Des Moines, Iowa — another example of successful self-defense:

Aug. 12, 2018, at 3:42 p.m.

Des Moines authorities don’t expect to file any charges in connection with this weekend’s fatal shooting because the victim was violating a court protection order and assaulting a man.

Police said 32-year-old Joshua James Wheeler died after the Saturday night shooting. Des Moines Police Sgt. Paul Parizek says prosecutors determined the shooting was done in self-defense.

The shooting took place in the doorway of the home of a woman who is a former domestic partner of Wheeler’s.

Police said the incident started after the 25-year-old woman and a 27-year-old male friend of hers discovered that a tire on the man’s car had been slashed. Wheeler arrived and assaulted the man, who warned that he was carrying a gun. …

Go here for the rest of the story.