Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Disputed Cause of Death in the George Floyd Case


The Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s office released a one-page summary report Monday of its autopsy of George Floyd. It supports my speculation, which I first stated on Friday (comment five here) that Mr. Floyd died of a heart attack. This conclusion has been disputed by medical examiners hired by the lawyers representing Mr. Floyd’s family, which concludes that Mr. Floyd was asphyxiated due to compression of the neck and the back.

The findings of the Hennepin County ME (here), in full, are:


Elaina Plott is a national political reporter for the New York Times. Before that, she worked for National Review, Washingtonian magazine, and The Atlantic. She and Jay are old friends. Elaina grew up in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and is currently working on a story about Jeff Sessions, the ex-senator from Alabama (who wants to be a senator again). Elaina went to Yale. With Jay, she talks about reading, writing, college, race, politics, the pandemic, and more. She is a journalist and writer of particular sensitivity and grace.

In the podcast, Jay singles out two pieces by Elaina Plott, which are favorites of his: this one, “The Bullet in My Arm,” which is autobiographical; and this one, which is about a Facebook group in Louisiana at the beginning of the pandemic.


Joe Concha, media reporter for The Hill and TV commentator rejoins Carol Roth to talk about the current state of the media and all of its issues. Joe and Carol discuss the media’s hypocrisy in dealing with Joe Biden vs. Brett Kavanaugh, their mishandling of COVID-19 reporting and their co-dependency with and on President Trump.

Plus, a “Now You Know” segment on the longest game in minor league baseball history.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Who Gets to Define and Impose the “Common Good”?


George Will’s column, When American Conservatism Becomes Un-American, talks about Senator Marco Rubio’s offer of “common-good capitalism,” which is capitalism minus respect for individuals’ right to freely express their preferences and values in the marketplace, and about Harvard Law Professor Adrian Vermeule’s offer of “common-good constitutionalism,” which is the Constitution minus respect for “individuals’ diverse notions of the life worth living.”

Both the Senator and the professor want the power to define and impose a “common good” that doesn’t respect the common man’s freedom. Neither specifies how they will identify the common good, nor do they provide a plan for preventing the power they demand from being abused.


Hubwonk host Joe Selvaggi and Pioneer Healthcare Senior Fellow Josh Archambault are joined by Hoover Institution’s Dr. Lanhee Chen to discuss the role that the World Health Organization (WHO) plays, what dysfunction may have contributed to the scale of the COVID-19 pandemic, and what steps can be taken to bring back transparency and trust.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Dispatches from Facebook: Or, Very Bad News


I’m 24. I didn’t create a Facebook account until my last year of college. When I did finally give in, I curated my feed carefully to avoid politics, and I stayed away from the most politically active people. All this (mostly) worked… until about four days ago.

Over the last few days, I’ve unfriended almost every person I knew in high school since all of them were posting either explicit justifications for the current riots or intersectional propaganda. (You know the kind.) The once staunchly Republican daughter of a family friend has now taken to calling out “privilege.” Just now, I logged into Facebook and found myself staring at the “pyramid of oppression” charts being non-ironically shared by Hillsdale students. Yes, you read that correctly: Critical race theory has arrived at Hillsdale. Some fraction of the school’s literary elite has gone woke.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. COVID Symposium: My Unexciting COVID Experience


Since everyone else is telling their Covid experiences, I guess it is time to tell mine. Some of it I discussed in my Quote of the Day post “Problems.”

I worked for a major airline as a technical writer as a contract employee. I like being a contractor; it allows me to avoid most of the politically correct training foisted on direct-hire employees. It pays well enough and my health insurance comes through my primary employer: me. I do not have to worry about losing my health insurance or paying COBRA if I lose my job. The downside is when the company you are contracting with hits financial trouble contract employees are the first ones let go.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. “Shoot ‘Em In The Leg”


Joe Biden offered up some training advice for our nation’s police officers. Around the one minute mark in the video above, the Democrat’s likely nominee gave an example of what they can do better. For instance, if an “unarmed person” is coming at you “with a knife,” police should shoot him in the leg, not the chest.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Black Community and Our Culture Has Lost Its First Love


I grew up in Pittsburgh. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream”, and other speeches were part of my high school curriculum. I married a Southerner in 1987. I was shocked to hear that Martin Luther King, Jr. was not a part of his high school curriculum. I entered a different world, a world where in his growing up years, hired help was mainly black, maids, landscapers, and hardscape contractors. I began to see and hear of a South that was not part of my upbringing, but only depicted in movies like “Gone With the Wind.” However, I experienced more racism in the North than I ever did in the South.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Music that Makes Me…Happy


We have a lot of things to stress out about right now. To initiate the new topic Clifford Brown has for June Group Writing, I thought it might be good to start with things that make me happy. We can set aside our cares for a few minutes and listen to bouncy, silly, or inane music. So, here’s to you, Ricochet. Does it make you smile?


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Definitive Proof of the Lab Origins of COVID Exposed


We’ve been told for several months that there is just no way that there are any lab origins to the COVID virus, and that anyone who suspects otherwise is a conspiracy theorist. Well, the Governor of New Jersey accidentally tipped his hand and confirmed that this isn’t just a regular virus, this is some kind of superhero virus that could not possibly be natural.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Tweeting vs. Rioting


The explosive video of Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, a white male, with his knee firmly planted on the neck of local, black resident George Floyd for nearly nine minutes, brings to public attention two forms of immunity from liability.

The first is a police officer’s broad level of qualified immunity. Floyd, who was detained under suspicion of passing a counterfeit $20 bill, became non-responsive and died shortly thereafter. Several days later, Office Chauvin was charged with murder on the correct ground that he lost his qualified immunity from prosecution because his actions so manifestly violated established norms of police behavior. That charging decision was met with universal approbation across the political spectrum, but was preceded by widespread acts of violence in Minneapolis and around the nation, bringing massive destruction to the property of innocent residents, which only intensified even after the prosecution was announced.


Senior Policy Analyst at the Independent Women’s Forum Inez Feltscher Stepman joined Culture Editor Emily Jashinsky in discussion on feminism and the Left’s recent attempts to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA).

Stepman compared feminist controversies in different decades with recent rebukes from women concerning the themes of Lana Del Rey’s music and the Hulu series “Mrs. America” portrayal of Phyllis Schlafly and the ERA. Both reflect the truth, Stepman argues, that many women feel devalued because of the feminist Left’s cultural takeover and radical suppression of differences between genders.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Clint Eastwood Is 90! (And Other Things)


This is a good time for a Titus Techera digest since I’m alone among conservatives banging the drums–Clint Eastwood turned 90 and is still working. I’m not sure why this man isn’t celebrated, his movies talked about, and work imitated, but here’s my National Review essay on Eastwood‘s turn to civic virtue and manliness over the last dozen years or so. Here are podcasts on Gran Torino and Unforgiven!

My most recent essay is over at American Mind, on self-mastery as the needful thing for young men in these crazy times of the lockdown. While this essay was in editing, many young men turned instead to rioting of the most shameful kind in so many places.


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. Confronting Uncomfortable Realities


In over 37 years of writing and commenting on current events, I don’t think I’ve ever struggled with whether or not to write on any particular topic as much as I have this one. The problem isn’t that it’s difficult to condemn murderers. On the contrary, what happened to Mr. George Floyd is unimaginable, and yet we saw it happen right in front of us. I can’t fathom what this gentleman went through, begging for mercy, crying while trying to simply breathe before ultimately losing consciousness and dying. A nation watched as that gentleman was killed, begging for his very life under the suffocating weight of a cop who was as passively disinterested in his victim as a predator in the wild waiting for the death of its prey. Likewise, hunting down and killing a black man out on a jog, as that stupid little posse of murderers did to Ahmad Aubrey, is equally infuriating and incomprehensibly vile. It’s inhuman. It’s depraved. And it is inexcusable. Period. Full stop.

Under those circumstances, uniting the country really wasn’t difficult at all. From the White House to practically every house, every church, every business and social gathering in the country, all were horrified, angered, and continue to demand justice for George Floyd, Ahmad Aubrey, as well as their families and friends. That nationwide anguish and anger undoubtedly helped bring about the firing of all the officers involved, murder charges against the officer with his knee on Mr. Floyd’s neck, the likelihood of charges against the other officers, and brought murder charges against those who savagely killed Ahmad Aubrey.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. If We Want to Defend Religious Freedom, We Have to Define It First


“Hey Siri, define ‘religious freedom.’” Of the dozens of results you’d find by posing that simple question, one of the clearest is set forth by the American Civil Liberties Union.

“The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution says that everyone in the United States has the right to practice his or her own religion, or no religion at all,” the ACLU’s site reads. So far so good—a definition clear enough to cover those on the right, left, and everywhere in between.


Is Scotland Becoming North Korea? James and Toby discuss the latest authoritarian announcements of Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon – or, as Toby prefers to call her, Nic Sturge-un. Also on the agenda: Is it now illegal to have sex in England? Who’s behind the riots tearing apart America’s cities? Why is Space Force no good?


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. Superego: Fathom – Book Review


Superego: Fathom by Frank J. Fleming is the sequel to his 2015 novel Superego, where Fleming tells the story of Rico, the top hitman for one of the biggest intergalactic crime syndicates. Rico is a psychopath – a man with no conscience or ability to empathize with other people. It’s a big part of what makes him so successful in his line of work. He’s never found a problem he can’t shoot his way out of, until he’s forced to pretend to be the good guy and find himself feeling emotions he never knew existed. Like love.

This review will contain spoilers for Superego, so if you haven’t read it yet you should stop now and go buy it. There’s also a short story that’s a prequel to the series – Superego: Personality Test – that you can read for free on Fleming’s website.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Protestors: You’ve Been Duped


It’s been a lousy few months for everyone, especially for the black community. You’ve experienced more illness from COVID-19 than almost any other group. You lost your jobs right after the economy expanded and gave you work. Then you were stuck at home for weeks on end. And then George Floyd was killed. And your world exploded.

Your initial reaction is no surprise to many of us—for years you’ve listened to the litany of anger against law enforcement, so it only seemed right to join a protest. So you did. Except that in these protests, you can’t see the truth: you’re being used, so used.


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. Day 133: COVID-19 Can You Help Me Live Vicariously?


We have yet to see that first day, here in Contra Costa County. The grocery store, the drug store, and restaurant take-out are the main excursions excluding medical appointments. The television gives us a window on the world — but only that of the content producers’ choosing.

The internet gives more flexibility, including here at Ricochet. One can choose what to consume, assuming Google, YouTube, and Twitter approve.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Quote of the Day: Washington on China


Yesterday’s Quote of the Day was Solzhenitsyn on China shared by @richardeaston. In the conversation that followed, @hangon replied:

If you follow Solzhenitsyn’s logic, no alliances would ever be formed since all countries and governments at some level have diverging interests. To defeat the Soviet Union, we tacitly allied with not only China but with fundamental Islam. (Remember them?) Solzhenitsyn’s idea is extremely naive.


Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Of Course This is Because We Rejected Kaepernick.


On Facebook, I would reckon that most of my friends are conservative of one stripe or another. Most of them are old school friends, and we’re from a conservative county in the Smoky Mountains. Several others are college friends, and Rhodes was a moderately conservative campus, overall. But with both environments, we have our exceptions. And they have opinions this week and decided to share them with the rest of us.

You see, the riots that started in Minneapolis and spread around the country, complete with vandalism, arson, battery, and now the killing of a couple of law enforcement officers… those are understandable and shouldn’t be criticized. Those who object to this say that the rioters should be expressing themselves peacefully? Oh, like Colin Kaepernick, right? Well, if you criticized Kaepernick for his peaceful protest, then you’re a hypocrite for criticizing the violent riots now.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Winning in November by Burning Jobs Down


We are witnessing a coordinated campaign of domestic political violence intended to impose governing results that the leftist controlled Democrat Party fear they cannot get by the ballot box. We know, it is a matter of public record, that Democrat insiders were fearful that the economy would recover enough to yield President Trump’s reelection. If he is reelected, the Republicans likely hold the Senate and have a shot at the House. The Democrats will do whatever they think might stop that outcome. Period.

We have actual coordinated Black Shirts conducting devastating and destructive violence across the nation. The states have been given the chance to take the measure of their local elected leaders. Some have been weighed in the balance and found doubly wanting, by the pandemic response, and by the response to the oldest imperative of any government: providing basic security where its writ runs.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. NYPD Targeting Jews While Brooklyn Burns


Adding this to the long list of occasions over the last two months where the City of New York and its government (led by Bill DeBlasio) has decided to divert much-needed resources into Jewish neighborhoods in Brooklyn in order to intimidate and harass its residents.