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Jonathan Max Wilson
1,255 followers -
poetry + programming + puppetry + everything else
poetry + programming + puppetry + everything else

1,255 followers
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A never before released track from Weird Al Yankovic recorded in 1981!

https://youtu.be/N5z58BS5eo0

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Sunset this evening. 
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2/16/17
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Not long ago one of my family members asked the following question to our more conservative relatives:

"I'm trying to understand your perspective better and would like to know, if the mainstream media are biased (and I've no doubt they are), where does a person turn for more balanced, truthful news? I'm really asking this sincerely. I want to know. If I'm getting my news from bad guys, where can I get better news?"

I responded:

"Personally, I reject the very concept of objectivity. There is no such thing as an unbiased anything. News media as an abstraction simply doesn't exist-- there are only people, and people always operate within some kind of mental framework through which they understand the world.

So there is no source that you can just take for granted as a "safe" source.

I prefer sources that are open about their frameworks, their agendas, and biases to those that claim to be objective."

In retrospect, I realize that my response was true but ridiculously unhelpful. This family member was looking for recommendations for conservative commentators that they could check out to balance the liberal viewpoints that they are already consuming. And I gave them nothing.

So I've compiled the following list of political commentators and sites that I find to be fairly reasonable. I sometimes disagree with their arguments, conclusions, or both, but I find their commentary usually interesting and helpful. Some of them like to wax a little too sarcastic for my tastes at times. Most of them are conservative, but not all. Many of them were opposed to Trump, so they provide a valuable criticism of the adminstration from a conservative perspective.

If you are liberal they will probably really annoy you, but you should read them anyway to make sure you're getting an alternative viewpoint.

In no particular order:

David French http://www.nationalreview.com/author/david-french

Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry http://theweek.com/authors/pascal-emmanuel-gobry

Ed Morrissey http://theweek.com/authors/edward-morrissey also blogs at http://hotair.com

Damon Linker http://theweek.com/authors/damon-linker

Heather Mac Donald https://www.city-journal.org/contributor/heather-mac-donald_122

John Podhoretz https://www.commentarymagazine.com/author/john-podhoretz/

Scott Adams http://blog.dilbert.com/

Jonathan Haidt http://righteousmind.com/blog/

Robert P. George https://m.facebook.com/robert.p.george.39

Ramesh Ponnuru http://www.aei.org/scholar/ramesh-ponnuru/

Jonah Goldberg http://www.nationalreview.com/author/jonah-goldberg

Websites that often have good conservative commentary:

http://www.thepublicdiscourse.com
http://city-journal.org
http://www.claremont.org/crb/
https://www.firstthings.com/tag/politics
http://www.aei.org

From an overtly libertarian perspective:

https://www.cato.org
http://reason.com

And if you are looking to add a specifically pro-Trump viewpoint:

https://amgreatness.com

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Damon Linker is not a conservative, and I disagree with quite a few of his views. But I find his commentary usually insightful and I think he tries to be honest and fair.

Scott Adams is also not particularly conservative, but he is the author of the comic Dilbert, and has written some valuable observations about Trump and the people who support him.
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Feel free to suggest level headed, reasonable liberal and progressive writers and websites that I should be reading to make sure I am getting an alternative view.


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My friend Nathaniel has written a blog post that expresses almost exactly how I feel. Please read the whole thing:

http://difficultrun.nathanielgivens.com/2017/02/15/still-crying-wolf/

#politics #government #trump

The way in which Michael Flynn was forced to resign is just as terrifying and dangerous to our Constitution and Republic as anything that Trump has supposedly done. This was essentially a "soft coup" by the unelected administrative state. This is how police states operate. The ends do not justify the means.

Please read these three articles:

http://theweek.com/articles/680068/americas-spies-anonymously-took-down-michael-flynn-that-deeply-worrying

http://freebeacon.com/national-security/former-obama-officials-loyalists-waged-campaign-oust-flynn/

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2017-02-14/the-political-assassination-of-michael-flynn


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This is an in-depth essay that explains in detail how entrenched government agencies undermine constitutional rights. It's lengthy, but worth your time:

How Government Agencies Usurp Our Rights
https://www.city-journal.org/html/how-government-agencies-usurp-our-rights-14948.html

"The Constitution protects a handful of substantive rights—famously, the freedoms of speech and religion. Most of its guarantees of liberty, though, secure judicial procedures—such as juries, the privilege against self-incrimination, and the due process of law. Any one of the procedural rights may seem a mere technicality. But taken together, they are the primary constraint on how the government proceeds against Americans in particular instances—forming a crucial barrier to government misconduct in all spheres of life."

"The nearly 800-year struggle to establish procedural rights was a remarkable achievement in the history of law. Unfortunately, history is not a steady march toward freedom. During the past century, the judiciary largely permitted, even facilitated, the evasion of procedural rights, and the judges have thus far shown little remorse."

#government #politics #constitution #rights

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Sunrise over the mountains this morning. 
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This is something I wrote six months ago. It seems even more applicable today than when I wrote it:

https://www.sixteensmallstones.org/a-lament-about-our-post-constitutional-politics/

We are now reaping what we have sown. And we have no one to blame but ourselves.

#politics #constitution #power #government

One of the things that I find most frustrating about the Trump adminstration so far is that it has somehow made people think that Dan Rather is a credible source for accurate news. He lost his credibility in 2004. Thanks a lot, Trump.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Killian_documents_controversy

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Some Advice For My Friends Who Are Spending Every Day Frantically Posting Anti-Trump Links– And For Everyone Else Sharing Information On The Internet Too

"It is easy to get emotionally drunk on outrage and anger. We can be so inebriated on indignation that our vision becomes distorted and we become sloppy about information."

Read the rest at:

https://www.sixteensmallstones.org/some-advice-for-my-friends-who-are-spending-every-day-frantically-posting-anti-trump-links-and-for-everyone-else-sharing-information-on-the-internet-too/

#socialmedia #outrage #anger #politics #fakenews #temperance 
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