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Opening Arguments

Pluto

After a journey of nine years and 3+ billion miles, the New Horizons sends us the remarkably sharp photo of Pluto. How freakin' cool is that? I like Charles Krauthammer's take:

No more No. 1

The campaign to completely strip young people of any drive, ambition and sense of competitive urgency, alas, lurches along:

Dying in line

Well, that's one way to whittle down the backlog:

An internal Veterans Affairs Department report states that about one-third of the veterans waiting to receive medical care from the agency have already died.

A review of veteran death records provided to the Huffington Post found that, as of April, 847,822 veterans were awaiting healthcare and that of those, 238,647 were already deceased.

1, 2, 3, 4, what the hell are we fighting for?

Huh:

 BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) -- When Army Sgt. Patrick Hart decided a decade ago that he would not serve in the war in Iraq, he expected to follow the same path as thousands of American war resisters during the Vietnam era and take refuge across the border.

Rotten to the corps

Oh, suck it up, ladies:

 A Marine officer who led the service's only all-female recruit battalion was fired amid complaints of a toxic leadership environment — but her supporters say she was only trying to make the unit better by holding women to tougher standards.

The long goodbye

Just because you can extend a life doesn't mean you should. No, not your grandmother. Your cat.

Posted in: All about me

Oh, screw growth

Bernie Sanders just shouts out what the other Democrats think but are afraid to whisper:

“Our economic goals have to be redistributing a significant amount of [wealth] back from the top 1 percent,” Sanders said in a recent interview, even if that redistribution slows the economy overall.

Poor, poor, privileged me

The best arrogantly self-pitying whine I've read all month: "I tried to escape my privilege with low-wage work. Instead I came face to face with it":

Locked and unloaded

Hillary Clinton has come out strongly in favor of -- gasp! -- gun control:

In her standard stump speech, Hillary Rodham Clinton talks about fighting income inequality, celebrating court rulings on gay marriage and health care, and, since the Emanuel AME Church massacre, toughening the nation’s gun laws.

Safe harbor

Huh:

There are over 200 "sanctuary cities" in 32 states that give safe harbor to illegal immigrants, even violent ones with felony records like the man accused of killing a San Francisco woman last week, according to a new analysis.

Seems like a redundant effort. Hasn't this pretty much become a sancuary country?

Die, people, die

And so it begins:

Be all you can . . . never mind

Google this

Google has released some fascinating aggregate data showing which searches surge in popularity at which hours of the day. We search for doctors at 8:20 a.m., for example, and recipes at 4:52 p.m. I found these two especially interesting:

Word power

Interesting words encountered while wandering through the blogosphere. Actually, today we have a word pair, and while they're not uncommon in usuage, they are frequently misued: flout and flaunt. Following is a comment made to a blog post on the Oregon baker who ran afoul of the law for refusing to cater a gay wedding:

Lost in space

Security first

I think Jeb is more right than G.W. on this one:

Jeb Bush appears to be taking a different tack than his brother on the extent to which the United States should promote democracy around the world as part of its foreign policy efforts.

Inertia

If he's drawing the right conclusion from all the trends he lumps together, as a libertarian I'd be ecstatic:

More Americans will celebrate the Fourth this year with their own sparklers and bottle rockets, thanks to newly relaxed fireworks regulations in red and blue states alike. . . .

Just the fax, ma'am

The right not to marry

Now, I really believe there is true equality:

The first time I heard the question was a year ago at my brother’s wedding, an occasion where such coaxing is commonplace. “When are you and Christian going to get married?” asked a well-meaning aunt whose daughter married another woman several years previously. “I know it’s legal in New York. Wouldn’t it make your mother happy?”

Donald trumped

I'm no fan of Donald Trump -- he has the potential to single-handedly wreck the GOP presidential primary. But in his current fight with NBC, I'm on his side:

“At NBC, respect and dignity for all people are cornerstones of our values,” NBC said in a statement. “Due to the recent derogatory statements by Donald Trump regarding immigrants, NBCUniversal is ending its business relationship with Mr. Trump.”

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