Have You Switched?

It is taken for granted that when we want a search engine we use Google. It’s now a verb as well as a noun.

Google has not been fair to conservatives. They have manipulated searches to favor liberals and anti Trump sentiment. They have more or less admitted it and refused to cooperate with Congress at a hearing. They have shared results of searches – an invasion of your privacy.

Fortunately, there is another search engine to use. It’s DuckDuckGo. It will not track you either, another plus.

I switched about a week ago and have had no problems with it at all. Evidently others are doing the same, according to this piece in Breitbart:

Privacy-based Google Search competitor DuckDuckGo has reached 30 million searches on its engine per day.

According to DuckDuckGo’s traffic page, the search engine’s daily search record is now 30,602,556 searches.

As of writing, 22,938,106,279 searches have been made in total through DuckDuckGo since its launch in 2008. DuckDuckGo’s popularity has been slowly increasing over the years, with 2017 being its most popular year yet.

“You deserve privacy. Companies are making money off of your private information online without your consent. At DuckDuckGo, we don’t think the Internet should feel so creepy and getting the privacy you deserve online should be as simple as closing the blinds,” declares the search engine on its about page. “Too many people believe that you simply can’t expect privacy on the Internet. We disagree and have made it our mission to set a new standard of trust online.”

In August, DuckDuckGo raised $10 million following increasing Big Tech privacy concerns, which the company claimed would be used to expand globally.

“To make any real progress in advancing data privacy this year, we have to start doing something about Google and Facebook. Not doing so would be like trying to lose weight without changing your diet. Simply ineffective,” declared DuckDuckGo CEO Gabriel Weinberg in an op-ed for CNBC this year. “The impact these two companies have on our privacy cannot be understated.”

More on IRV

I have noticed an increasing amount of signs popping up in Midtown urging people to vote no on the three referenda on the Nov. 6 ballot.

I also got a second card in the mail advising this. Someone on Nextdoor is pushing the “no” stuff too. Steve Mulroy has an article in the Flyer arguing the “no” position, as well. I have already mentioned that the proponents of “no” are not conservative heroes: John McCain, NYT columnist David Brooks and Myron Lowery to name a few (more details in an earlier article below).

Ever wonder when politicians who haven’t been particularly good get on a bandwagon? Former County Commissioner Steve Mulroy argues, “…Instant Runoff Voting (IRV), which lets voters rank their 1st, 2nd, and 3rd choices; if no one gets a majority, you use the rankings to determine a majority winner, without the hassle, expense, ridiculously low turnout, and minority vote suppression involved with holding a separate runoff election later. IRV has a proven track record of success over decades in a dozen other U.S. cities.”

Is it a hassle? Does it matter if the turnout is low? That usually means the best informed people and the ones who care the most get out and vote. Funny, that seems to be OK for a blue wave.

Minority vote suppression? I’d have to have someone explain that to me. How does that work? Does the media hide that an election is coming? Do the Dem leaders forget to notify their people? Ridiculous!

Cost? Mulroy says it would be $250,000 a year to repeal it. That’s nothing to a city where we pay enormous amounts per pupil for an “education” that can’t get them figuring out change at Wendy’s. What will they try next? We just all click on our computer and vote that way? Don’t laugh, they’ll try it.

In an article entitled “Instant Runoff Voting: Looks Good–But Look Again” by Stephen H. Unger at Columbia, he writes:

So how could any decent, intelligent person not support IRV? One answer is that situations can arise in which IRV results are clearly unreasonable. For starters, what would you think of a system that chose C as the winner in a 3-candidate race where majorities of the voters expressed a preference for A over B and for A over C? In the IRV election of Example 3 below, this is precisely what happens!

Example 3.

4 CAB 4 CB
3 BAC ———-> 3 BC —-> C wins
2 ACB drop A 2 CB

In the first round, A is eliminated. C, second choice of A supporters, gets 2 more votes in round-2 and therefore beats B 6-3. But notice that 6 of the 9 voters placed A ahead of B and 5 voters placed A ahead of C. So, altho A would have beaten both rivals in 2-candidate elections, C comes out on top in this 3-candidate race. Putting it another way, if there had been a 2-candidate election between A and C, A would have won, but the entry of B into the race mysteriously makes C the winner. Not good!

But IRV has serious drawbacks. Particularly when there are three or more serious contenders, some very strange things can happen, such as the defeat of a candidate who would have won over each of the other candidates in a 2-person race, or a situation where A is deprived of a victory because several voters changed their first-place votes from B to A.

The complexity of IRV also mandates central counting of votes and this, in turn, provides increased opportunities for wholesale fraud or malfunction. Hand counting and recounting becomes slower and more expensive.

A lesser problem is that the reporting of election results to the general public is likely in many cases to omit significant information, such as local data and support for minor party candidates.

I wonder when politicians want to change the rules. Usually that means Democrats think they’re losing. Just check the current argument about dropping the Electoral College. We saw that after 2000, too, when the Dems lost the presidential election. Otherwise, they’re fine with it.

I’m afraid this is one of those things that makes people feel a righteous indignation. It is misplaced. Plurality voting and primaries have worked for centuries.

Bredesen Exposed

James O’Keefe’s undercover Project Veritas has set its sites on Phil Bredesen.

He finds an aide explaining that the Democrat candidate for Senator would not really vote to confirm Judge Brett Kavanaugh. It was just a political maneuver.

She says, “No, it’s a political move… He thinks that like we’re down like half a point right now. It’s like really close and we’re losing by a point or two. So he thinks that if like by saying this he’s appealing to more moderate republicans and he’ll get more of them to vote for us.”

Watch:

Bredesen is still a tool of Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, as Marsha Blackburn has explained.

A Must Read

John Hinderaker at powerlineblog.com asks is there a connection between the Kavanaugh smear and the FBI?

If you look at the facts, it’s hard to disbelieve that. Here’s his blog post about it:

James Kunstler is a liberal who has a site called Clusterf*** Nation. Although a liberal, he casts a cold, intelligent eye on the follies of our time. The linked post begins by questioning why anyone would believe Christine Ford. What follows is an explosive theme:

I believe that the Christine Blasey Ford gambit was an extension of the sinister activities underway since early 2016 in the Department of Justice and the FBI to un-do the last presidential election, and that the real and truthful story about these seditious monkeyshines is going to blow wide open.

Stunning if true.

It turns out that the Deep State is a small world. Did you know that the lawyer sitting next to Dr. Ford in the Senate hearings, one Michael Bromwich, is also an attorney for Andrew McCabe, the former FBI Deputy Director fired for lying to investigators from his own agency and currently singing to a grand jury? What a coincidence. Out of all the lawyers in the most lawyer-infested corner of the USA, she just happened to hook up with him.

It’s a matter of record that Dr. Ford traveled to Rehobeth Beach Delaware on July 26, where her Best Friend Forever and former room-mate, Monica McLean, lives, and that she spent the next four days there before sending a letter July 30 to Senator Diane Feinstein that kicked off the “sexual assault” circus. Did you know that Monica McClean was a retired FBI special agent, and that she worked in the US Attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York under Preet Bharara, who had earlier worked for Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer?

Could Dr. Ford have spent those four days in July helping Christine Blasey Ford compose her letter to Mrs. Feinstein? Did you know that Monica McClean’s lawyer, one David Laufman is a former DOJ top lawyer who assisted former FBI counter-intel chief Peter Strozk on both the Clinton and Russia investigations before resigning in February this year — in fact, he sat in on the notorious “unsworn” interview with Hillary in 2016. Wow! What a really small swamp Washington is!

Of all the gin joints lawyers in all the towns in all the world, she walks in with one from the FBI. Funny coincidence.

None of this is trivial and the matter can’t possibly rest there. Too much of it has been unraveled by what remains of the news media. And meanwhile, of course, there is at least one grand jury listening to testimony from the whole cast-of-characters behind the botched Hillary investigation and Robert Mueller’s ever more dubious-looking Russian collusion inquiry: the aforementioned Strozk, Lisa Page, James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Bill Priestap, et. al. I have a feeling that these matters are now approaching critical mass with the parallel unraveling of the Christine Blasey Ford “story.”

The Democratic Party has its fingerprints all over this, as it does with the shenanigans over the Russia investigation. Not only do I not believe Dr. Ford’s story; I also don’t believe she acted on her own in this shady business. What’s happening with all these FBI and DOJ associated lawyers is an obvious circling of the wagons. They’ve generated too much animus in the process and they’re going to get nailed. These matters are far from over and a major battle is looming in the countdown to the midterm elections.

The Democrats’ Russia hoax and their smearing of Judge Kavanaugh are two of the most appalling episodes in recent political history. Are they, in some fashion, related? I have no idea. Stay tuned.

As we have seen in the Russia hoax, there is a shadow, unelected bureaucrats that think their will supersedes that of the voter. They work independently of our democracy and will do anything necessary to succeed and to cover their tracks.

How much more don’t we know?

Why Am I Not Surprised

The horrific accident involving a limo that ended up killing 20 people in New York state made me suspicious. So often these cases involve an illegal immigrant who doesn’t have the proper licensing to drive.

It turns out that was a valid suspicion. From ABC News:

The limousine that was involved in a deadly crash in Schoharie, New York failed an inspection by the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles last month, according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Additionally, the driver of the limousine, who died in the crash along with 19 others, did not have the appropriate driver’s license to be operating that vehicle, Cuomo said.

A law enforcement official told ABC News that the driver was named Scott Lisinicchia and lacked the proper license required to drive a vehicle that can hold more than 15 occupants.

“The owner of the company, in my opinion, because of the legal consequences, had no business putting a failed vehicle on the road,” the governor said.

The registered owner of the limousine is named Shahed Houssain and used to be an FBI informant, according to law enforcement sources and court documents.

Hussain became an informant in 2002 after he was arrested on fraud charges while working for the state Department of Motor Vehicles, law enforcement officials said. He was caught helping immigrants cheat on driver’s tests and cooperated with the FBI in order to avoid deportation to Pakistan, the sources said.

Hussain testified as part of two terrorism cases, including a 2009 sting operation that disrupted an alleged plot to bomb a Bronx synagogue. The other case was out of Albany and involved terrorism financing.

That’s a lot of people who died in an accident that should not have happened.

Hats Off to Melania

Melania Trump’s visit to Africa last week got scant coverage.

True, the Kavanaugh news blotted out anything else from our mainstream media.

You had to search to find out much about the First Lady’s trip. Right there it tells you it was successful.

Can you imagine the coverage had Michelle Obama made this trip? Wall to wall, magazine covers popping, praise dripping articles would have flooded us.

Two important things happened on Melania’s trip, however.

First, she visited a former slave outpost in Ghana. As americanthinker.com relates, “on her second day of her solo trip to Africa, she visited Cape Coast Castle, a 17th-century fortress along Ghana’s coast that once served as a holding facility for the transatlantic slave trade. The castle is now a museum, together with other 40 existing former slave warehouses along the Ghana coast. The castles shipped most of their slaves (estimated at 20 million) to America and Brazil.

“While the African nations preserve their heritage of the past, here, in the United States, social justice activists consider preservation as shameful, reason for which the historic monuments and sites associated with slavery have to be destroyed.

“It is quite suspicious that this destructive “trend” appeared as soon as Donald Trump won the presidential election in 2016. I have never heard of an organized or systematic destruction or desecration of monuments and sites during the Bush or Obama administrations. I repeat, ‘organized or systematic.’”

Could the First Lady’s visit be a subtle message on this topic of the preservation of history?

Then, there was her trip to Egypt, a Muslim country. While there she wore this:

She met the Egyptian president, el-Sisi wearing this tailored version of a man’s suit. She is stating in her way to them that a woman should be treated as an equal to men. It’s quite a statement in a Muslim country that usually wants women in robes and head coverings.

Instead of this she was criticized by our media for the hat she wore on safari in Kenya:

The Daily Beast writes:

First Lady Melania Trump donned a white pith helmet during a safari in Kenya on Friday, which some claim is “evocative of colonialists,” CNN reports. The network reported that the helmet was often worn by “European militaries in their colonies throughout Africa and in India,” and soon became a “popular sun hat” for European tourists in the 1930s. Matt Carotenuto, a historian at St. Lawrence University, compared wearing the hat to showing up to an “Alabama cotton farm in a confederate uniform.” “Her attire is a signal of her understanding of what Africa is in 2018,” Kim Yi, a politics professor at the University of California, Riverside, told The New York Times. “It’s tired and it’s old and it’s inaccurate.” Trump, whose sartorial choices have gotten her in trouble in the past, is currently on her first extended international tour and will visit Egypt as her next and last stop.

That’s the Leftist media. They miss the big picture to focus on false claims of racism.

The Kavanaugh Case in Retrospect

What just happened with the Kavanaugh confirmation?

Now that it’s over it’s worth a summation. The victory meant, as one blogger put it, “The days of transforming our country through judicial activism are over, and that is a catastrophe for the left.”

But let’s not forget what happened.

Clarice Feldman at americanthinker.com reminds us.

Here’s a quick recap of the flimsiness of Christine Blasey Ford’s allegations by an online friend, Max Madison:

She refused to hand over the results of her polygraph

She refused to hand over her 2012 therapist’s notes

She said she was afraid to fly, but has flown dozens of times.

Since she did in fact fly, she offered no other reason for the delay

She said she wanted anonymity but contacted [the Washington Post] multiple times

Said she got advice from “beach friends” but didn’t mention that the primary one was a former FBI lawyer, Monica McLean, who worked for Preet Bharara, a man Trump fired. She also failed to mention, when talking of her Beach friends at the hearing, that Monica was sitting right behind her.

She had a perfect memory of 1982 but couldn’t remember basic things from the previous 10 weeks

She’d been drinking.

She changed the year of the alleged attack

She named 4 people, but had no backers

She couldn’t remember how she got home even though her story had her escaping the house far from home, pre-cell phone.

She gave no location or any details that could be researched for verification.

She never told anyone and never claimed PTSD prior to Kavanaugh’s name circulating 30 years later.

She said that she put the 2nd door on her house because of PTSD, but evidence shows it was to get around zoning laws to create a rentable apartment.

She said she didn’t know that Grassley offered to come to her, even though it was broadcast nationally.

She feigned no knowledge of polygraphs even though her ex’s sworn statement said she’d coached Monica McLean how to beat it in the 1990s, and in any case her profession should have at least well acquainted her with it.

She co-authored a paper on repressed memory creation years before she claimed to have one

Nothing is known of her pharmacology, but given her past alcoholism, her visits to a therapist and her general presentation, odds are high that it’s extensive.

She scrubbed her social media. We know from a pussy hat photo that she was rabidly anti-Trump.

She had zero family or friends with her, not from the 80s nor from today. She was surrounded only by Democrat Party handlers.

Constant cries of bravery & “nothing to gain” vs a $700,000 GoFundMe and a career boosted a la Anita Hill

Literally all there is her word vs all of the above. Not a shred of evidence.

I would add to this excellent summary – one of those she claimed at the “event” in question, Leland Keyser, whom she characterized as a lifelong friend, informed the committee that McLean had pressured her in a vain attempt to get her to change her statement to support Ford’s account.

The later claims of sexual predation by the nominee were even more fantastical and were rightly dismissed out of hand.

We almost lost the rule of law and the presumption of innocence over such flimsy smears!

John Nolte at Breibart had an interesting winners/losers take.
Winners: The rule of law, Justice Kavanaugh, President Trump, Susan Collins, Lindsey Graham, Mitch McConnell, Chuck Grassley, Jeff Flake, The Republican Party, The Federalist Society, Prosecutor Rachel Mitchell and Breitbart News (for fair reporting).

Losers: The organized Left, Democrats, The Establishment Media, Michael Avenatti, Lisa Murkowski, Never Trump dead enders (David Frum, Jennifer Rubin, Joe Scarborough, Bill Kristol), Cory Booker, #MeToo, The Matriarchy, Hollywood, Alyssa Milano and Fox News. The latter because “The opinion line-up was fine, it was the news part of Fox News that disgraced itself with a litany of fake news about Dr. Ford being ‘credible.’ It is not about the politics or the even the fate of the Supreme Court — the fate of a man was on the line, a whole man, and Fox News, of all places, threw him to the wolves by declaring — without a shred of evidence, without hearing his side — that the sexual assault allegations against him ‘credible.’ That is as un-American as it gets. Fox News is dead to me.”

It’s a very good wrap up so go read the whole thing here: https://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2018/10/06/nolte-winners-and-losers-of-the-kavanaugh-confirmation/

Pelosi Spills Strategy

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi made this statement in June of 2017. It completely explains how they deal with the Russia hoax and the more recent attempt to take down Justice Kavanaugh.

“It’s a self-fulfilling premise. You demonize and then you— We call it the wrap-up smear, if you want to talk politics. Called the wrap-up smear. You smear somebody with falsehoods and all the rest, and then you merchandise it. And then you write it, and they’ll say, ‘See, it’s reported in the press that this, this, this, and this.’ So they have that validation that the press reported the smear. And then it’s called the wrap-up smear. Now, I’m gonna merchandise the press’s report on the smear that we made. It’s a tactic. And it’s self-evident.” —Nancy Pelosi
https://www.c-span.org/vide…

Last Chance Soon

Tuesday is the last day to register to vote in Tennessee.

If you know anyone who is conservative or Republican who hasn’t voted in years or is wavering, please let them know they need to register today to vote in the November 6 election.

As most of us know, this midterm is vitally important to our nation. Marsha Blackburn is needed in the Senate and Bill Lee needs to become the governor. The consequences of failure will hurt Tennessee and the country.

All you have to do is look at the mob the Democrats unleashed over Justice Kavanaugh. Put the House and Senate in their hands and destruction of the Trump presidency and the Constitution will follow.

About That Instant Voting Issue

The CA and the Daily Memphian have top stories about a lawsuit filed concerning the November 6 ballot. It concerns the three referenda listed on it.

I had mentioned previously that I got a card in the mail a couple of weeks ago urging me to “VOTE NO on ALL Nov. 6th referenda.” Two of the three referenda on the ballot concern instant runoff voting. Such “conservative” stalwarts as Mark Luttrell, Senator John McCain and New York Times columnist David “Obama pants crease lover” David Brooks are instant runoff voting proponents and want to see it implemented.

Immediately my suspicions were aroused, especially as they listed Myron Lowery and the Commercial Appeal as advocates, too.

Let’s revisit what instant runoff voting is all about. I wrote about it in November 2011 when this first came up in Memphis:

Here’s how it works. A voter ranks his top candidates one, two and three. All the votes are counted and then if their is no 50% majority plus one, the second and third tier candidates are counted. TS-SI News Service explains what happens next.

“First, the contender with the lowest number of first choice votes is dropped from the competition. Each voter who had ranked that candidate as their number one choice then has their vote given to whichever candidate they selected as their second choice. The votes are re-tallied and, as before, the contender with the lowest vote total is eliminated. This process continues for as many rounds as needed until one candidate has over 50% of the votes tallied in a round, at which point he or she is declared the winner.”

“With ranked choice voting,” says Stanford University mathematician Keith Devlin, “you can get a winner who is the first choice of only a relatively small minority of the voters. Undesirable outcomes such as this can arise because the candidates are eliminated and their votes reassigned one after another, and the order in which that happens can make a huge difference. A shift of a large block of votes in an early round can eliminate a candidate who would have gone on to win had she survived until a later round and then picked up ore votes to boost her tally.”

The San Francisco Bay Citizen took a look at how it worked in their elections. “Critics of ranked choice voting point to the results of San Francisco’s mayoral race as evidence of what is wrong with the system: It favors incumbents, and it rarely requires a majority of voters to determine a winner,” the newspaper wrote.

“As more ballots are exhausted with each round, the number of votes used to determine a winner decrease, allowing candidates to gain office with support from a minority of voters.” It took 12 rounds to get Ed Lee elected. “In the final round, Lee had only 43% of all votes and John Avalos had 29%.

“According to (Corey) Cook (a political science professor at the University of San Francisco), every exhausted ballot amounted to half a vote for Lee, because it reduced the likelihood of someone catching up to him. In every round, Lee’s support grew as more ballots were discarded, reducing the number of votes available to his competitors.”

In the end, the Bay Citizen concluded, “sixteen percent of San Francisco voters who filled out their ballots correctly and completely – more than 31,500 people – did not have a say in the final outcome of the city’s mayoral race. Their ballot were discarded or exhausted, because they did not list either Lee or Avalos as one of their top three candidates.”

TS-SI finds that “opponents of the method point out that voters whose choices are repeatedly eliminated effectively get to vote several times, and moreover the process gives equal value to a person’s third place ranking of a candidate and someone else’s top choice vote.”

And, “the known vagaries of the voting method have resulted in some candidates trying new approaches to getting votes. Mayoral candidate Michela Alioto-Pier sent out a mailing urging voters to ‘please consider at least making Michela your number 2 choice for mayor’ and a mailing from the San Francisco Republican Party suggested two mayor ‘candidates to avoid.’

Devlin thinks that as candidates become more aware of the election math and the possibilities it opens up, more of these tactics are likely to be seen. ‘Particularly in the era of social media, where it is possible for large numbers of voters to coordinate their actions,’ he adds.”

I added in 2011, that what we need in Shelby County is to repeal this vote. Why complicate the system and make it rife for more fraud? It may cost a little more for the city, but if voting integrity isn’t one of the elected officials’ pledge, then what is?

We are asked this time if we want to repeal this law. The answer is obviously yes.

More about this tomorrow.