Trump Administration abandons effort to defend FCC rules capping prison phone rates from multiple lawsuits. FCC Chair Ajit Pai not only uses anecdotal evidence (that someone could stuff a burner phone into a dead cat and throw it over a prison wall!) to defend his inaction, but uses anecdotal evidence that actually obliterates his argument (lower phone rates would, I would think, obviate the need to use dead cats to smuggle burner phones). Anyway, letting corporations charge usurious phone rates because prisoners and their families literally can't do better isn't the definition of "free market conservatism," no matter how many of today's "conservatives" confuse their ancient philosophy with "letting corporations do whatever they want."
Five transgendered American soldiers sue our government over President Trump's declaration on Twitter that "the United States Government will not accept or allow Transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military." It's possible the lawsuit gets thrown because Mr. Trump hasn't apparently lifted a finger to actually enforce this declaration, but his whining about the "cost" of health care for transgendered soldiers when it costs more to send Mr. Trump on the taxpayer dime to Mar-a-Lago every weekend would support the plaintiffs' "arbitrary and capricious" claim.
California farmers are losing money, and letting some of their crops rot, apparently due to the lack of migrant workers available to pick the crops. Let's not tacitly accept the notion that only-a-migrant-worker-would-pick-strawberries, though -- instead, let's ask whether maybe folks who would pick fruit (and Americans aren't as loathe to do dirty work as Our Glorious Elites are!) might have a little more leverage now when it comes to getting better pay and working conditions. No use complaining that higher wages cause higher prices when, ah, not having enough workers to pick the fruit already causes higher prices.
Let's not obsess too much over a Democrat's 54-44 win in an Iowa House special election on Tuesday -- President Trump took this district by over 20 points, but it was still a Democrat hold (the previous state Rep died in office earlier this year) and turnout just eclipsed 40%. It is good that the ZOMG TEH TRANZ PEEPULZ WILL USEZ TEH BATHROOMZ!!!! hysteria didn't work here (and could have caused a backlash, for all we know!), just as it didn't get North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory re-elected. The better lesson to learn? Social wedge issues all the way up to abortion won't work against Democrats who can convince people they won't sell them out to Our Glorious Elites -- but Democrats won't try this in large numbers, either out of weakness or out of a desire to keep that Glorious Elite campaign cash coming.
Finally, I've been churning over President Trump's continued refusal to denounce or even acknowledge last week's bombing at a Minnesota mosque, and I've concluded (not that this was a difficult analysis to undertake) that his silence is a dog whistle to his votaries. I've also concluded that when he does denounce the attack, as I'm sure he'll do soon, that act will be another dog whistle to his votaries, as in I tried to ignore a matter that certainly doesn't concern you, but look what PC culture made me do! Of course, I'm sure Mr. Bannon is counseling continued silence, but I bet Mr. Trump knows what's best for those poor beleaguered racists.