Patterico's Pontifications


Our Side Has an Impressive Young Candidate Too, and Naturally Facebook Hates Her

Filed under: General — JVW @ 4:01 pm

[guest post by JVW]

Lost in the brouhaha over our spunky but batty niece, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, has been the intriguing story of a very impressive young Republican Congressional candidate running in California’s 16th District, which encompasses parts of Fresno, Merced, and the San Joaquin Valley. Elizabeth Heng is the daughter of Cambodian immigrants who fled their home county during the terror of the communist dictator Pol Pot. Here is how Alexandra Descantis of National Review described her in a nicely-written profile last month:

About a decade ago, after [Heng] graduated from Stanford University, where she had served as student-body president, she returned to the Central Valley and opened a series of cell-phone stores with her brothers. Eventually, she found herself responsible for managing about 75 employees. “That was when I saw firsthand how government regulations impacted businesses negatively,” she says. “I constantly felt that from Washington, D.C., and Sacramento, they were saying that I was everything wrong with our country, when all I was doing was creating jobs.”

She subsequently decided to leave California to work in Washington, D.C., not expecting to stay long. “But it takes a long time to understand how to get legislation across the finish line,” she explains. Before she knew it, she had been in the nation’s capital for about six years, on and off. At one point, she worked on the House Foreign Affairs Committee with congressman Ed Royce (R., Calif.). At another, she aided Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign in Nevada.

In 2016, Heng became a director for President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration ceremony — a role she held even as she traveled to Connecticut in her off hours to obtain an MBA at Yale. (“Never be one of the inauguration directors and get your MBA at the same time,” Heng says of that experience. “It was the worst of all worlds.”) When the inauguration finally took place, she remembers how powerful it was to watch her immigrant parents sitting on the stage with the incoming president.

Nothing against our delightfully daffy Bronx-born, Long Island-bred, Bronx-returning Democrat Socialist superstar, but Ms. Heng’s curriculum vitae is somewhat more impressive than graduated college, interned for Ted Kennedy, then tended bar and worked as a “community organizer.” Though not outright defeating an entrenched and influential incumbent in a one-party district like Ms. Ocasio-Cortez did, Ms. Heng did manage to take 47% of the vote in June’s open primary, holding the incumbent, seven-term Democrat Representative Jim Costa, to 53%. Moreover, she accomplished this feat running as a Republican in a district where Democrats at the top of the Presidential ticket usually get close to 60% of the vote. In the 2014 Republican wave election, Costa narrowly beat Republican challenger Jim Tacherra by a 51% to 49% margin, but in the rematch during the Presidential election year of 2016 when almost twice as many voters cast ballots, Costa cruised to a 58% to 42% victory.

So Ms. Heng, facing what we would assume to be an angry and motivated Democrat base, faces a stiff challenge in pushing aside Mr. Costa this November. To help introduce herself to the electorate, the Heng campaign has produced a wonderful four-minute introductory video. I encourage you to watch it; it is worth the investment of time.

Naturally, this video from an attractive and charismatic young female minority Republican candidate has the left resorting to their usual film-flam. Facebook, citing what we would guess to be the gristly images of Pol Pot’s victims at the beginning of the video, has suspended the Heng for Congress account prevented the video from being embedded on the Heng for Congress page. NRO published a screenshot which the campaign provided, with Facebook’s usual bland and canned language explaining their decision:

Heng screenshot

In the accompanying post, the publisher of National Review, Jack Fowler, gets to the heart of the matter:

Is the Cambodian Genocide now a non-event? Or just too icky for the Silicon Valley Boys? Or maybe this ad-rejection is yet another powerful Republican political message that fails some subjective standard contrived in a liberal hotbed?

That a Stanford graduate can be treated so capriciously by what Fowler rightly terms “the Silicon Valley Boys” ought to be shocking, but in the era of whispers of Twitter shadow bans and the firing of tech employees who hold contrarian social beliefs I guess it can’t be entirely surprising.

I confess that I know nothing about Elizabeth Heng other than what I read in the NRO profile and what I have seen on her website. She may be a little more bullish on the ability of the federal government to Accomplish Great Things than I would prefer, but overall I get the sense that she is a sober-minded and serious person who understands that federal programs must somehow be paid for, and finding the money to fund a program for one year doesn’t automatically mean that you have therefore found the money to fund it forever. If you would like to help her campaign with a donation (the California Democrat machine run by public employee unions, crybullies, and wealthy progressives is no doubt working hard to deflect this challenge) you can do so here.

EDIT: In the initial post I said that Facebook had “suspended” the account, but that doesn’t appear to be accurate. I have amended the post to say that they have prevented the video from being shown on the platform. My apologies for misconstruing the response.


Sunday Music: Bach Cantata BWV 21, Part 2

Filed under: Bach Cantatas,General,Music — Patterico @ 12:01 am

It is the eleventh Sunday after Pentecost. The title of today’s Bach cantata is “Ich hatte viel Bekümmernis” (I had much grief).

This cantata provided the music for both last week and today, with Part 1 heard last week, and the conclusion heard today. Last week’s suffering gives way to today’s hymn of praise.

Today’s Gospel reading is John 6:24-35.

Once the crowd realized that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into the boats and went to Capernaum in search of Jesus.

Jesus the Bread of Life

When they found him on the other side of the lake, they asked him, “Rabbi, when did you get here?”

Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, you are looking for me, not because you saw the signs I performed but because you ate the loaves and had your fill. Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.”

Then they asked him, “What must we do to do the works God requires?”

Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”

So they asked him, “What sign then will you give that we may see it and believe you? What will you do? Our ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written: ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’”

Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is the bread that comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”

“Sir,” they said, “always give us this bread.”

Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.

The text of today’s piece is available here. The words complement the Gospel’s message: that Jesus himself will provide, and indeed will be, the bread of life. The cantata’s words are wonderfully evocative of a movement from suffering into joy. The crown of battle becomes sweet refreshment. God is a source of comfort who causes troubles to disappear, and changes weeping into pure wine:

Ah, Jesus, my peace,
my light, where are You?
– O soul behold! I am with you. –

. . . .

– The hour approaches already,
when your crown of battle
will become a sweet refreshment. –

. . . .

Rejoice, soul, rejoice, heart,
fade now, troubles, disappear, pains!
Change, weeping, into pure wine,
my aching now becomes a celebration for me!
Burning and flaming is the purest candle
of love and of comfort in my soul and breast,
since Jesus comforts me with heavenly delight.

We close this great cantata with the hymn of praise at 35:19:

The Lamb, that was slain, is worthy to receive power, and riches, and wisdom and strength, and honor and glory and praise.
Praise and honor and glory and power be to our God for ever and ever. Amen, Alleluia!

Happy listening!

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]



Filed under: General — Patterico @ 10:16 am

I could write more about Sarah Jeong. But meh. On one hand, a guy found a ton more obsessive garbage from her about white people. His thread is here. If you think this controversy has been overblown and based on a handful of tweets, click that link and survey a large sample of her obsessive denigration of white people. On the other hand: in her favor, she appears to hate the New York Times and virtually everyone who has ever written for it.

She’s not going anywhere — she chose the correct race to be racist towards, after all — so let’s call it a draw. Look at it this way: every time the NYT writes an editorial on race in the future, we’ll have the example of this racist to point to. And won’t that be nice?

I could write about President Trump tweeting about LeBron James:

But meh. Yes, LeBron James has just launched a school for disadvantaged kids. This is a stupid culture war fight to pick. But Trump is just engaging in his childlike nonsense. Boring. Plus, he’s just trying to change the subject from Manafort, etc.

I like Mike!

OK, here’s a good one. The Gendered Natures of Polar Bear Tourism.

Beautiful. Get Trump to tweet about it and Sarah Jeong to reply with some nasty comment about white man, and we’ll be cookin’.

I’ll close with the never-ending menace of people throwing dead octopi at condos:

Thanks to the country’s historically strict firearm control laws, police officers in Japan rarely have to worry about dealing with gun-wielding criminals. However, over the past few months Japanese law enforcement officials have arrested suspects for crimes committed using knives, sickles, and even fireworks, and now investigators in Hokkaido are searching for a man who armed himself with an eight-legged instrument of mayhem.

On July 27, at around 2 a.m. in the morning most of the city of Sapporo, the largest city on the northern island of Hokkaido, was sleeping. One resident of the city’s Chuo Ward, however, couldn’t because he kept hearing a thumping on the exterior wall of his condominium building. While Japan appreciates peace and quiet in its residential areas, most people won’t immediately call the cops at the first bit of noisiness. After the thumping had gone on for nearly an hour, though, the resident contacted the police, who came out and searched the area.

While they didn’t find any suspicious people lurking around, they did discover some suspicious seafood, in the form of a dead octopus which they said had been thrown against the building’s wall repeatedly.

Thanks to Dave Barry, who notes: “This happens far too often.”


Kevin Williamson Responds

Filed under: General — Dana @ 10:13 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Responding to the New York Times’ decision to hire Sarah Jeong, in spite of her ugly tweets, and his name being invoked in the ensuing debate, Kevin Williamson had this to say:

I assume that the editors of the Times knew exactly who and what Jeong was when they hired her. If not, then it isn’t Jeong who needs to be fired — it’s the negligent people who hired her.

If, on the other hand, the Times is more or less satisfied with Jeong, then it should resist the social-media mob campaign to have her dismissed. It is up to institutions to hold the line against mass hysteria and the mob mentality of social media. I don’t know much of anything about James Gunn, the director fired from the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise for making a bunch of ghastly jokes, but I do know that Marvel Studios can and should say: “We’ll hire who we want.” Marvel and the New York Times have the resources and the standing to stand up to this kind of social-media scalp collecting: All they need is the guts. I hope the Times has enough. Berkeley didn’t. ABC didn’t. Google didn’t. A few book publishers I can think of haven’t.

I’ve heard some people on the right say, “If Kevin Williamson has to get fired by the Atlantic, then Sarah Jeong has to get fired by the New York Times.” The Times can hire and fire whomever it likes — but not in my name. I’m sure that many of the people invoking my experience are well-meaning friends, but I’ll thank them to leave me out of this.

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)


Untruths: Vox’s Matt Yglesias Smears Ed Whelan

Filed under: General — Dana @ 6:33 pm

[guest post by Dana]

As readers here know, Ed Whelan is a stand-up guy. Principled, insightful and one from whom everyone can learn something. So when I read Matt Yglesias’s recent smear of him, I thought I would bring it to your attention.

Yglesias’s made two false accusations today. First, he claimed that President Trump promised that he would create a whiter judiciary. He does not provide any quotes from the president to support this claim because the president never said this. Apparently, Yglesias believes that Trump’s disparaging smear of Judge Gonzalo Curiel, when Trump called the judge overseeing his Trump University case a “hater,” as well as calling into question his ethnicity, provides the necessary proof. The second inaccurate comment Yglesias made was that President Trump has since delivered on his promise of a whiter judiciary – with the enthusiastic and explicit support of Ed Whelan.. (Since his declaration that Trump promised a whiter judiciary is untrue, it goes without saying that his conclusion of Trump having delivered on this promise is also false. You can’t deliver that which you haven’t promised. That’s not to say he hasn’t selected white nominees. We know he has. But instead of jumping to a racial accusation, Yglesias should consider that it is the judicial philosophy of the individual that has landed them a nod. Yglesias is correct that, as far as I know, Trump has not apologized to Curiel for his ugly comments.)


Yglesias points to Whelan’s Bench Memoes post, Trump’s Judicial Picks And ‘Diversity,’ published in May of this year to back up his accusations.

In his post, Whelan opts to lay out his “stand-alone account” of his views on the subject of judicial selection and where diversity fits in. He does some “bean counting,” using the the left’s own approved diversity statistics:

Of Trump’s confirmed nominees, 76% are male and 24% are female. Of his other nominees (both pending and withdrawn), 74% are male and 26% are female. Combining the numbers yields an aggregate of 75% male and 25% female.

According to AFJ’s numbers, for their confirmed nominees over the entirety of their presidencies, Barack Obama had a 58/42 split, George W. Bush had a 78/22 split, and Bill Clinton had a 71/29 split. So Trump’s numbers are in the same ballpark as Bush’s and Clinton’s—a slightly higher percentage of women than Bush and a slightly lower percentage than Clinton.

On race/ethnicity: Of Trump’s confirmed nominees, 9%—three “Asian Pacific American” appointees—are minorities. Of his other nominees, 9% are minorities: three Hispanics, two Asian Pacific Americans, and one African American (who, by the way, has been awaiting a Senate floor vote since December).

Nearly 36% of Obama’s judicial appointees were minorities. The figure for Bush was 18% and for Clinton 25%. So Trump’s percentage of minority nominees is only half of Bush’s figure and far below Obama’s and Clinton’s.

Then Whelan looked at the “diversity” question itself, in light of the Trump presidency:

hat “diversity statistics” should we expect in a president’s judicial nominations? Well, some with a very robust quota mentality (like this law professor and—surprise!—former clerk to Justice Sotomayor) seem to think that the goal should be to have different subgroups “represented on the bench” in accordance with their numbers in the population. I won’t join argument on that position here, but will instead note it and set it aside.

He expands on his views of what a president should be able to take into consideration, and have leeway in when making his selection of a judicial nominee:

My own take is that a president is entitled to select nominees who share his Administration’s judicial philosophy and who are supporters of—or, at the very least, who are not critics of—the president. Further, I’d expect candidates to be broadly in the age range of 40 to 55 and to have the sort of professional qualifications that would generate a favorable rating from the American Bar Association.

So far I don’t see any place where Whelan has supported any purported intentional creation of a whiter judiciary, not enthusiastically, and certainly not explicitly. Let’s look further at his examination of the selection of the judiciary. Acknowledging that it’s difficult to be completely accurate about where a pool of candidates would land on the diversity scale, he nonetheless sticks to the known quantities:

According to 2018 data from the ABA, 64% of active attorneys are male and 36% are female. Further, 85% are white and only 15% are minorities. (I haven’t found a breakdown by age. Perhaps the female and minority numbers are somewhat higher in the 40-to-55 age bracket, but it seems at least as plausible that the higher numbers are in the younger age bracket.)

One study concludes (see figure 3 here and accompanying text) that female lawyers are “significantly more liberal” than male lawyers, “even when controlling for a number of other salient characteristics like years since bar passage.” (I’d guess the same is true for minority lawyers versus white lawyers.)

Women lawyers “are much more likely [than male lawyers] to exit the workforce in order to focus on childcare.” It’s a safe bet that the disparity is even greater between conservative women lawyers and conservative men lawyers.

In the 2016 election, 52% of men voted for Trump, while only 41% of women did; 57% of whites voted for Trump, while only 8% of African Americans, 28% of Hispanics, and 27% of Asians did.

Again, it’s too complicated a matter for me to try to integrate all these statistics to estimate the demographics of the Trump judicial-candidate pool. But I’d be surprised if any serious effort would yield numbers higher than 25% female and 9% minority.

Again, I’m not seeing any sort of endorsement for a whiter judiciary.

Whelan addresses what some may have seen as an “indictment of conservative judicial philosophy”. Pfft! says Whelan:

Some on Twitter imagine that these numbers are somehow an indictment of conservative judicial philosophy. Take Ian Millhiser—please! But this is a massive non sequitur. Set aside the oddity that Millhiser seems to think that the only women whose views count are liberal women. The soundness of an idea or of a philosophy does not turn on the number of people who embrace it.

Further, the percentage of women in the hypothetical candidate pool does not speak meaningfully, if at all, to the percentage of highly educated women lawyers (or of women more generally) who support conservative judicial philosophy. As noted, conservative women are much more likely than conservative men to take time off in the formative years of their careers to give birth and to raise their kids. They also might well be more likely to pursue fields with predictable or flexible hours and little out-of-town travel. They might be more likely to face discrimination from legal academia. I’m not going to try to quantify the cumulative effect of such factors. I’ll limit myself to the observation that even if one were to assume an even male-female split among proponents of conservative judicial philosophy, there is ample reason to expect a much more skewed candidate pool.

Whelan concludes by sharing with readers that from what he’s heard, this White House is making a concerted effort for female and minority candidates. And he reminds readers that the statistics don’t contradict this.

Yglesias is a fool to make such false accusations against someone with a stellar reputation of honesty and precision. I will assume it’s the Vox way: manipulate and manufacture smears as necessary. By making the judicial selection of individuals about race and diversity, it detracts from the more basic and important matter of a nominee’s judicial philosophy. Bright, shiny object and all that.

For his part, Whelan came out swinging. I’ll just leave his Twitter exchange with Yglesias here. It’s what we would expect from Whelan, measured and to the point:



(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)


New York Times Hires Racist to Join Its Editorial Board

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:35 am

The New York Times editorial board has named its newest member: Sarah Jeong.

Sarah Jeong
She’s a true delight, and she’ll fit right in, as you can see from these tweets of hers:

If she deletes them, that’s OK. I saved screenshots here.

Thanks to Allahpundit on Twitter (as always).

P.S. Kevin Williamson and Roseanne Barr, don’t get too excited. A different standard applies here.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]


Journalists Ignore Media’s Trump-Love During Campaign, Attack Supporters, Yet Can’t Figure Out Why MSM Is Not Trusted

Filed under: General — Dana @ 2:48 pm

[guest post by Dana]

While President Trump stupidly threw red meat to his critics, fouling up a salient argument regarding voter i.d. laws, everybody’s favorite journalist, CNN’s Jim Acosta threw some red meat of his own to the critics and haters of Big Media:


While Trump gleefully stokes the fires of media-hate and intentionally nurtures an ugly divisiveness in the nation, it’s noteworthy that Acosta conveniently ignores the fact that it was his employer, CNN, which greedily greased the rails for Trump’s ascendancy to the White House. As a reminder:

The benefits to CNN are pretty obvious—namely, higher ratings, which translate into higher ad revenue. It’s not like the network only boosted its coverage of Trump as it has become more and more obvious that he would become the leading candidate. According to a number of media analysts, the Republican candidate received orders of magnitude more coverage from the very beginning of his campaign—before it was even clear how dominant his support was.

From June 16 (the day he announced his campaign) through September 14, media-tracking firm Zignal Labs said Trump was the subject of at least 2,159 CNN reports, almost twice as many as Florida governor Jeb Bush. Furthermore, the Media Research Center found that during a two-week period in August, close to 80% of CNN’s Republican campaign coverage was spent discussing Donald Trump: 580 minutes out of a total of 747 minutes.

Interestingly, Acosta also tweeted this in spite of his already earnestly expressed concern about the dangerous rally:


Ugh. Embarrassing child’s play, and painfully easy to see through:


Also piling onto Acosta’s elitist sense of self, while also conveniently ignoring Big Media’s dirty hands, Politico’s Marc Caputo whipped up his own special brand of derogatory hostility and divisiveness:



Ironically, Caputo seemingly still can’t understand why the media is so hated… Initially, Caputo came out swinging with sarcasm at his critics, but later issued an apology for his comments. But his ugly message remains: These garbage people, these Trumpsupporters, these hicks, these toothless clowns should stop fanatically clinging to their guns and Bibles and follow our example in how to treat fellow Americans!

It is undeniable that both sides of the political aisle are filled with deplorable individuals imbued with a perceived sense of righteous anger as they stoke the coals of dissension, and then claim the mantle of true patriot. Whether it’s members of the media, who conveniently forget their own complicity in giving Trump a helping hand for the sake of Big Ratings and subsequently downplayed the abuses leveled at his supporters, or whether it’s the Trump sycophants and loyalists, whose own bitterness and sense of betrayal have found a home in the incendiary provocations of Trump, they are all loathsome individuals. Neither group adds to the fiber of political discourse, nor do they persuade anyone to their cause. Oddly, Trump, like no other, brings to the surface all the arrogant dishonesty and self-deception that lies beneath the surface in many an individual. It’s raw, it’s angry, it’s manipulative and condescending. And from where I stand, it’s a foul piece of work, indeed.

P.S. I know a few good and decent people who uneasily support Trump. While I don’t share their views, I would absolutely exclude them from this assessment because I know that they too would turn away from anyone like those rally attendees captured on video, as much as they would people like Acosta and Caputo.

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)


Summer Jobs for Teens: Yet Another Archaic Practice

Filed under: General — JVW @ 12:26 pm

[guest post by JVW]

Those of us of a certain age on this site probably have memories of our teenage summers spent working at minimum wage jobs, a tradition designed to expose us to life in the working world as well as provide us with some spending money and/or some savings for college. (I knew schoolmates too, of course, who worked to help make ends meet for their families, but they typically had year-round after school jobs and perhaps were able to pick up extra hours in the summer.) According to a piece on government radio, summer jobs are now joining obtaining a driver’s license and going on dates as coming-of-age milestones less and less known to the latest generation:

Pedraam Faridjoo of Kensington, Md., is spending his summer volunteering and traveling. Ryan Abshire from Carmel, Ind., is using the time to be with his family. Meme Etheridge of St. Simons Island, Ga., is attending a music camp where she plays percussion.

What do they all have in common? They’re teenagers, and they are not working summer jobs.

A summer job, like lifeguarding or scooping ice cream, used to be a rite of passage for teens. Thirty years ago, nearly two-thirds of U.S. teenagers worked summer jobs. Twenty years ago, more than half of them did.

Now, only a third of teens are in summer jobs, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The article goes on to list some possible reasons for the decline in teen employment. They range from the plausible (the recession and glut of college graduates looking for jobs has forced credentialed people to take jobs that used to be filled by teens) to the dubious (teens are choosing to study or take unpaid internships over the summer) to the aggravating (teens express a preference for hanging out with family and friends or playing video games over work).

I can understand and sympathize with the idea that teen jobs are harder to come by. The sort of jobs available when I was that age were at fast food restaurants, movie theaters, lawn care, city parks, and retail. Where I grew up, these jobs were either largely seasonal (people in Colorado mowed their lawns mostly from mid-May through mid-September) or else, as in the case of fast food and retail, the summer months when everyone was out of school which was an especially busy time, necessitating the hiring of more employees. Here in Southern California, however, I note that lawn care is a year-round concern and as such is largely handled by immigrant workers, and in the age of online movie tickets and fast food ordering kiosks fewer employees are required to sell tickets and take orders.

Yet at the same time there is plenty of data suggesting that seasonal jobs go unfulfilled because teens are not entering the workforce. Lifeguarding, a job at which I spent two glorious summers, is suffering from a diminished pool (of course it’s a bad pun) of qualified applicants, as fewer teens are willing to take the lifesaving and water safety instructional courses necessary for certification, despite the fact that they have lowered age requirements since my day. Summer resorts are struggling to hire dining staff, desk workers, maids, babysitters, and the rest of the army of young, nimble, and eager recruits to take care of the grunt work. I was in Jackson Hole last summer for the eclipse, and I was amazed that all of the hotels in the area had brought in overseas students to staff the entry-level positions. Meanwhile, American teens work two afternoons per week at the dog rescue center, post pictures on Instagram, study for the ACT, and play the latest release of Call of Duty.

Feel free to reminisce on your summer employment back in the day, or tell us if teens in your community are any better or worse about seeking employment than the NPR article suggests.


Trump: You Need an ID to Buy Groceries

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:28 am

Um no.

“You know if you go out and you want to buy groceries, you need a picture on a card, you need ID.” The guy says.

I believe in voter ID laws. And there are countless areas of life in which you do need an ID to perform simple, basic, everyday tasks. The underlying complaint here is valid.

But why do we have to select a moron to make that argument? Why must this nincompoop choose one of the few situations where you don’t typically need an ID?

This guy contaminates everything he touches and everything he supports.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]


Wishing the Boss a Happy Birthday

Filed under: General — JVW @ 5:09 pm

[guest post by JVW]

I didn’t want the day to go by without wishing our gracious host a very happy birthday. I wondered for a moment if he wanted to keep his special day private, but I noticed that ten years ago he let slip that today was his celebration day. It’s gauche to mention a gentleman’s age (or maybe it’s a lady’s age that should go unremarked; I can’t remember these things any longer), but this is a pretty momentous birthday as he transitions from a perfect square number to a number that can be represented by only one Roman numeral, all while fighting to keep the AARP membership recruiters at bay.

Happy birthday, Patterico. I hope the celebration is equal to the benefit that you bring to all of your readers. But don’t overdo it at your age.


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