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I wrote this week, complaining that the Supreme Court’s delay in ruling on the Biden/OSHA vaccine mandate had allowed it to go into effect: by waiting until the Monday deadline passed, they left businesses no choice but to enforce it or risk ruinous fines if the SCOTUS upheld it. That criticism still goes, even though the Court did issue a ruling Thursday striking down the mandate on businesses with more than 100 employees (they allowed the mandate on health care workers at hospitals receiving Medicare and Medicaid payments. More on that below.)

It was a better-late-than-never ruling that still should’ve come sooner. But at least it was properly decided. Naturally, the left wing of Twitter went ape, accusing the Court of allowing millions of people to DIE!! As usual, they missed the point, which wasn’t whether vaccines are a good thing but whether OSHA has the power to order Americans to take one whether they want to or not. These are two separate issues (as I always point out, I’m vaccinated myself, but I don’t believe Washington bureaucrats have the power to force it on people who object.)

(A writer/producer for “The Daily Show” even tweeted his complaint that this SCOTUS doesn’t care that “a lot of legal experts on here gave assurances that Biden’s vaccine mandate was clearly allowed by law and precedent.” Commenters reminded him that the Supreme Court are the legal experts, and they didn’t take advice on this case from random people on Twitter. Well, maybe Sonia Sotomayor did.)

Rebecca Downs at Townhall.com has an excellent summary of the legal reasoning of the majority (the three liberal Justices followed their usual judicial philosophy of “If it feels good, do it.”)

https://townhall.com/tipsheet/rebeccadowns/2022/01/13/justice-gorsuch-highlights-a-key-point-about-oshas-authority-in-concurring-opinion-n2601827

Citing the unanimous 1819 McCullough v. Maryland decision, Justice Gorsuch wrote that the federal government doesn’t have unlimited general powers but must cite a constitutionally enumerated authority when it regulates. Mandating a vaccine on 80 million American workers, many of whom object on religious or other grounds, is such a sweeping expansion of federal power that it would have to come from the people’s elected representatives. Gorsuch said far less consequential rules had run afoul of this test, Congress clearly did not delegate such powers to OSHA, and a majority of the Senate even voted to disapprove of OSHA’s ruling.

Quoting the late Justice Antonin Scalia, Gorsuch said these safeguards “serve to prevent 'government by bureaucracy’ supplanting ‘government by the people.'"

It’s unfortunate, however, that Justices Roberts and Kavanaugh joined with the liberals to hand Biden a win in allowing his health care worker mandate to stand. They ruled that since the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services that issued the mandate fall under the Secretary of Health and Human Services, who has the power to impose conditions on receiving those funds, the mandate is allowed. I'd say that's an awfully expansive definition of "conditions."

https://www.westernjournal.com/justices-handed-biden-win-vaccine-mandate-health-care-workers/

In his dissent, Justice Thomas reminded his colleagues that the exact same principle applies: this case wasn’t about whether vaccines are good, it’s about whether federal appointees have the power to “force health care workers, by coercing their employers, to undergo a medical procedure they do not want and cannot undo.” He noted that just as with OSHA, if Congress had wanted to grant that power to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, it would have done so, and “it did not.”

That decision is being touted by the White House as a big win for Biden. Considering his other news this week includes the SCOTUS killing the vaccine mandate on businesses, record inflation, a new record low approval rating and the collapse of his push for killing the Senate filibuster and legalizing vote fraud, by comparison, it is.

Postscript to the SCOTUS ruling: Justice Gorsuch made reference to the plaintiffs’ argument that the government knew that its mandate was unconstitutional because Biden Chief of Staff Ron Klain, who has been nicknamed “Biden’s Brain” (boy, there a title you don’t want on your resume!) retweeted a tweet boasting about it being the ultimate legislative “work-around.”

https://redstate.com/nick-arama/2022/01/13/glorious-scotus-spanked-ron-klain-today-too-n506254

Apparently, it’s not enough for Twitter to censor conservatives from saying what we believe. If they want to save the Democrats, they’ll have to start censoring them from telling us what they believe, too.

In what I hope is the first ripple of a coming tidal wave, a Florida professor has resigned as president of the American Psychological Association’s Society for Media and Technology, in protest of how the APA’s bowing to leftist ideology and wokeism has trumped medical science in ways that are “actively harmful” to patients.

https://redstate.com/alexparker/2022/01/13/a-former-president-scalds-the-american-psychological-association-over-wokeness-worthy-of-shame-n505734

It is astounding to think that these are the people who are supposed to help others improve their mental health when they sound like Grade A wackjobs themselves. In addition to the APA's demonizing of men, traditional values and America as irredeemably racist, the professor cites their PC language edicts, which are baffling.

For instance, you can no longer say “blind person,” you must say “person with blindness.” That seems to accomplish nothing except to bolster George Carlin’s observation that people think things become less painful if you just add more gaseous syllables to their names (the way “shell shock” gradually morphed into “post-traumatic stress disorder.”)

The professor also complained, “We’re not to talk about birth sex or people being born a boy or girl (‘assigned female/male at birth’ is the language of choice now.)”

I could actually agree with that: you are assigned female/male at birth…by God, via your genitals and chromosomes. But I doubt that would earn me a welcome to the American Psychological Association. Which is fine with me, since it sounds like the inmates are running the asylum there.

President Biden's week

January 15, 2022

President Biden’s terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week continued Thursday with the lid likely being nailed shut on the coffin of both his “Legalize Vote Fraud” bill and his push to kill the Senate filibuster to get it passed.

https://www.foxnews.com/politics/biden-white-house-policy-flops-defeats

Biden was set to visit the Senate to urge them to kill the filibuster, but before he even arrived, Arizona Democrat Sen. Kyrsten Sinema brought down the hammer, saying that while she supported the election bill, she would not vote to kill the filibuster.

https://pjmedia.com/news-and-politics/stephen-kruiser/2022/01/13/sinema-wraps-filibuster-dagger-in-dem-talking-points-then-sticks-it-in-n1549212

She also had this great comment about the current political scene: “It’s more common today to demonize someone who thinks differently than us rather than to seek to understand their views.” Ironically, I think this was probably lost on the leftists who thought they could bully her into changing her mind by harassing her. It was certainly lost on her colleagues, who responded to her defense of the filibuster (which was previously defended by Chuck Schumer and Barack Obama, back when it was to their advantage) by claiming she was now on the side of “white supremacy.” So it’s official: “white supremacist” now means nothing other than “someone who refuses to vote the way I want her to.”

But Sinema wasn’t alone: Sen. Joe Manchin also said on Thursday, "I will not vote to eliminate or weaken the filibuster." And that makes the vote 52-48. Game over. Or it should be, but don’t bet that we won't see another attempted "work-around" the Constitution.

https://redstate.com/sister-toldjah/2022/01/13/joe-manchin-twists-the-knife-a-little-bit-more-n506255

(Incidentally, what does it say about the state of your party when only 2 out of 50 of its Senators have the courage and integrity to publicly refuse to blow up the institution of the Senate for short term partisan gain? That’s a 1-25 integrity ratio.)

In comments to the press afterward, Biden didn’t take his defeat well. I don’t know if he even realized that by inexplicably barking that election reform laws are about “who gets to count the vote! Count the vote! Count the vote!” he was reminding everyone of communist dictator Joseph Stalin, who reportedly said votes didn’t matter, all that matters is who gets to count them.

https://redstate.com/sister-toldjah/2022/01/13/watch-joe-biden-appears-visibly-flustered-defeated-in-post-sinema-speech-interview-n506167

By comparison, that appearance made Kamala Harris look like the star of “I Love Lucidity.”

Democrat Disasters

January 14, 2022

I miss the days when Democrats used to ruin things slowly, through corruption, graft, incompetence and a misguided belief in failed ideology. That long lead time at least made the eventual disasters look almost inadvertent. These days, the minute they take office, they leap straight to openly destroying systems that are working, without even bothering to try to appear rational or reasonable.

For instance, if you ran a state like California, which so many residents are fleeing that U-Haul can’t keep vans in stock, would you think it’s a good idea to double the already crippling taxes to pay for a state-run socialized health care program, the type that a couple of states tried then quickly abandoned after demand and costs spiraled “beyond expectations?” Well, of course, that’s exactly what some Democrats in California want to do.

https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/california-wants-to-double-its-taxes/

And take President Biden (please!) He inherited a domestic energy industry that thanks to Trump’s policies had brought down gas prices and made the US energy independent. Through a flurry of executive orders, he immediately strangled it, creating shortages and skyrocketing prices, which he blamed on oil company price gouging. Of course, he had to do this to force us to switch to unready and unreliable “green energy” alternatives, like sunshine, windmills and unicorn flatulence. When the people began to revolt, his solution was to beg OPEC to pump more oil (ironically, they told him to go pound sand.)

So how does he react to the inevitable disaster caused by his own policies? By doubling down on stupid. His Bureau of Land Management just killed a deal that’s been in the works for years to develop resources in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska. This blindsided and infuriated Alaskans and their elected representatives, since Biden didn’t even bother consulting with them before throwing his policy grenade.

https://www.westernjournal.com/biden-blindsides-red-state-kills-game-changing-energy-plan-may-solved-usas-gas-crisis/

Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski said the plan had been carefully crafted over years to protect sensitive areas of the Reserve. Fellow Sen. Dan Sullivan called Biden’s action “not only arbitrary and contrary to good science” and a sop to placate “radical extreme environmental groups who care nothing about Alaskans,” but also harmful to the very indigenous communities his Administration claims to care about.

Indeed, all these actions that drive up the cost of energy are most harmful to the poor and middle class. But they’re popular with wealthy green activists who want to force everyone to buy an electric car without thinking far enough ahead to figure out what we’re going to plug them all into. They can't all be powered by Greta Thunberg's electrifying smile.

The only rational explanation I can see for this latest action is that Biden must figure if nobody can afford to buy gas, we can’t drive to the polls and vote these maniacs out. I have news for him: at this point, a lot of us would walk a mile over hot coals to do that.

RIP Ronnie Spector

January 14, 2022

As the pop culture icons of the ‘50s and ‘60s enter their 70s and 80s, it’s inevitable that we’ve started losing them. I’ve had to write a number of obituaries recently, and here’s another particularly tough one: Rock Hall of Famer and one of the great voices of girl group pop/rock, Ronnie Spector, has died after a battle with cancer at 78.

https://variety.com/2022/music/news/ronnie-spector-dead-dies-the-ronettes-1235152801/

Her family issued a statement reading, “Ronnie lived her life with a twinkle in her eye, a spunky attitude, a wicked sense of humor and a smile on her face. She was filled with love and gratitude. Her joyful sound, playful nature and magical presence will live on in all who knew, heard or saw her.” Tributes are flooding Twitter from countless musicians, from Joan Jett to Brian Wilson (who actually wrote the Beach Boys classic “Don’t Worry Baby” for her) to La La Brooks of the Crystals, who remembered her as “so sweet…a hoot, like a firecracker” who had “the most unique voice” and was at her happiest on stage.

https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-news/la-la-brooks-ronnie-spector-tribute-1283853/

Born Veronica Bennett, she was performing with her sister (she said they purposely played up their flirty sex appeal, getting longer eyelashes every time it worked) when they auditioned for megaproducer/homicidal nutjob Phil Spector, who immediately shouted, “That’s the voice I’ve been looking for!” He created the Ronettes to showcase her, and they quickly scored a string of hits that are still heard today on radio, TV and films, including “Be My Baby,” “Walking in the Rain” and “Baby I Love You.”

Ronnie had much in common with Tina Turner: a powerful, sexy voice that could cut through Spector’s Wall of Sound, an overtly sexy image, an ‘80s career revival and a marriage to an abusive, manipulative husband. Ronnie married Spector, and he kept her a virtual prisoner in his house, driving her to alcoholism before her mother forcibly rescued her from his home, a harrowing experience she described in her 1990 memoir, “Be My Baby.”

Sadly, unlike Tina, Ronnie’s ‘80s revival was mostly limited to guest appearances on her admirer’s records like the Eddie Money classic, “Take Me Home Tonight,” since radio wouldn’t play her solo releases. The only silver lining is that that means there are a lot of great records that most people have yet to hear. Many involve big name stars who greatly admired her, like the 1980s LPs “Siren” (with its great cover) and “Unfinished Business;” the 1990 EP co-produced by Joey Ramone, “She Talks to Rainbows;” the 2006 EP of Marshall Crenshaw songs, “Something’s Gonna Happen;” and the 2016 album of British Invasion hits, “English Heart.”

Rolling Stone compiled a good playlist of 15 essential tracks, ranging from the biggest hits to terrific lesser-known titles, like her 1977 single of Billy Joel’s “Say Goodbye to Hollywood” (which was inspired by “Be My Baby”) with the E Street Band.

https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-features/ronnie-spector-ronettes-best-songs-1283633/

And my favorite must-hear ‘80s song is her duet on “You Mean So Much To Me, Baby” with Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes. If you love great ‘60s-style, horn-drenched, soulful Jersey rock songs like those that Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band cover, only with better vocals and no political lectures, this is a slice of musical Heaven.

https://youtu.be/4JabbiFhBAE

Finally, someone put together a compilation of her interviews and performances on David Letterman’s show from the 1980s through 2010. Great quote: in a joint appearance, Eddie Money said he wanted her for “Take Me Home Tonight,” but figured she was unavailable (Ronnie snorts at that!). But he called her and asked, “What are you doing?” She replied, “The dishes.”

Watch and be reminded of what great pop singing with no need for AutoTune sounds like. RIP, Ronnie.

https://youtu.be/GM5r0Ve8Las