1. The Washington Post article about the Ferguson rioting contains this interesting passive voice statement:
My take: The rioting was a foregone conclusion, and that was true regardless of the grand jury’s decision. People would have hit the streets (hard) whether to celebrate or destroy.
Also a foregone conclusion was the fact that Obama did his latest riff on “stupid” police. This president is interested in fomenting, not calming, racial strife. He could have talked about the majesty of our process or about stability and peace and harmony . . . but he didn’t, and he never would have.
There are elements in America that crave anarchy and nihilism.
I’ve been thinking a lot about Leftists and toddlers. I should start with my biases: I absolutely hated it when my kids were toddlers. On the one hand, they were cute and it was exciting to see them develop as little people, soaking in the world like a sponge. After all, these were my little progeny.
On the other hand, dealing with a toddler’s greed, frustration, anger, impatience, resistance to toilet training, and temper-tantrums got old really quickly. The only useful thing about the whole experience was that it left me thinking that the Catholic Church is correct — we are born in sin and it takes an enormous amount of parental and societal effort and pressure to subordinate our innate wickedness and to replace it with civilized behavior.
My friend Sally Zelikovsky came up with the pun about a new sport called “E-bowling” after word emerged that the New York physician, who was ostensibly “self-isolating” himself, actually trawled all over the New York, using subways and Uber, to engage in activities ranging from dining out to bowling. I laughed when I read her pun, but I can’t escape the feeling that the real sport here is the game that our government playing with the American people’s health and well-being.
What stops shooters is guns
Those assembled in the Canadian responded appropriately when Kevin Vickers appeared before him: They applauded long and hard for the man who brought a shooter down with a single shot:
There was another shooting today, in a Washington state high school. A 15-year-old managed to kill one girl and wound several others before a bullet stopped him too — in this case, the bullet was self-inflicted.
My son, ruminating on the Seattle school shooting, and still a little shaken by the false-alarm lock-down in his own school, said to me, “I’m not afraid of being shot. What makes me crazy is the feeling of helplessness.” I agreed, pointing out that, even at his school, where everyone is unarmed, their teachers, who genuinely believed a shooter was on campus, fought against that helplessness by improvising weapons made out of whatever projectiles they had in their class.
Shooters who kill for pleasure or to score political/terrorism points, always go where there are helpless victims. They won’t achieve any of their calculated, sick, and/or sadistic goals if people have the capacity to defend themselves.
What stops these shooters is gunshots. Sometimes the gunshots come from third parties (usually police who arrive had the scene long after the shooter has gotten a good run for his money). Such was the case in Austin, Texas (“As Martinez fired, McCoy jumped to the right of Martinez and fired two fatal shots of 00-buckshot with his 12-gauge shotgun, hitting Whitman [the killer] in the head, neck and left side.”); Salt Lake City, Utah (“When Talović turned around and aimed his shotgun towards the team, Scharman and Olsen fired again and killed him. Talović’s body was later found to have been struck a total of 15 times by bullets fired by police.”); Santa Monica, California (“He was fatally shot by officers inside the library and then brought outside where he died.”); and Isla Vista, California (“Rodger was found dead with a gunshot wound to his head; police said he had apparently committed suicide.”).
And sometimes, if the police are pressing in on the killer, or he’s run out of ammunition, the killers use their own bullets on themselves. We saw this in downtown San Francisco (“The attack continued on several floors before Ferri committed suicide as San Francisco Police closed in.”); in Columbine, Colorado (“Both had committed suicide: Harris by firing his shotgun through the roof of his mouth; Klebold by shooting himself in the left temple with his TEC-9 semi-automatic handgun.”); in Newtown, Connecticut (“The police heard the final shot at 9:40:03 a.m, and believe that it was Lanza shooting himself in the lower rear portion of his head with the Glock 20SF in classroom 10.”); and, today, in Marysville, Washington (“Fryberg, 15 a freshman at the school, died as a result of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, police said”.)
It’s a great irony — and an untenable one for Leftists — but the only thing that stops a shooter, whether he’s crazy, a criminal, or a terrorist, is a gun. The reality that Leftists don’t want to accept is that, until we have 100% certainty that no bad guys currently have or ever will have guns, we are safest when, in a moral society, lots of other people — good and moral people — are armed. Since that certainty can never be achieved (absent, perhaps, the Barnhouse effect), the safest society is the one in which people of good will carry guns. By the way, Chicago is a perfect example of what happens when only the bad guys, the ones without any decency or moral compass, have guns.
Let’s make sure the cops aren’t the only ones with guns
There’s nothing in the Constitution that says only police officers may have guns. Indeed, the Second Amendment sees the right to bear arms as one inherent in every individual. This is a good thing and all people should do everything they can to make sure that police don’t become our overlords.
I don’t have any particular bone to pick with police. I appreciate that there are people who are willing to go into often dangerous and often disgusting situations to help make our communities better. I do, however, have a very big bone to pick with police who have become so flush with power that they no longer think they’re the public’s servants but, instead, think that they’re the public’s overlords. Kevin D. Williamson details some appalling examples of instances in which police (with the whole criminal justice system backing them up) got confused about their place in the hierarchy.
The problem isn’t just that the police SWAT some houses here and there, without any citizen recourse. There’s a much broader downstream problem because of the police’s unfettered strength. As Williamson notes, the police, like all bullies, go for the easy targets — and in America, those easy targets are law-abiding citizens:
The strange flip-side — the second half of Samuel Francis’s “anarcho-tyranny” — is that the brunt of government abuse falls on the law-abiding. Illinois, for example, makes it difficult for an ordinary citizen to legally carry a gun for self defense — up until a couple of years ago, doing so was categorically prohibited. But Illinois police seize thousands of illegal guns from criminals each year, and the state prosecutes practically none of those weapons cases. The law-abiding — by definition law-abiding — citizens applying for concealed-carry permits get treated like criminals, and the actual criminals do not. If you follow the law and inform Illinois authorities that you have a gun in the home, you invite all sorts of intrusion and oversight. If you don’t, nobody’s really looking. Meanwhile, the streets of Chicago are full of blood, going on 1,600 shootings this year and it’s not even Halloween. Nobody is held responsible for that carnage, but if you put an eleventh round in your legally owned rifle in Oak Park, you’re looking at jail time.
Frank Serpico (yes, the real Serpico) has an article out about the appalling corruption in New York when he was a young cop, about the fact that he is still a pariah amongst New York cops, and about the fact that this corruption continues today, with out-of-control police.
What’s different now from Serpico’s time is that the police don’t even have to bother to pal up with the criminals to get cash. Thanks to seizure laws, the police can be the criminals, shaking people down for all the money they’ve got. Already a decade ago I was working on cases about civil forfeiture laws that enabled federal and state police to seize cash, cars, jewelry, homes, and anything else that was valuable with impunity just upon suspicion of certain crimes. Worse, because the money raised this way goes into local, state, or federal bank accounts, judges went along with these seizures because they get paid out of the same pot. At long last, though, the MSM may be catching up with this particular abuse of power.
The “Allahu Akbar”-ness of the hatchet swinger in New York
Turning to those honorable police who are in the front line between citizens and criminals, I haven’t had the chance to see how the media is playing the case of Zale H. Thompson, the man who used a hatchet to attack four police officers in Queens, slashing one officer’s arm and giving the other a terrible head wound before he was shot dead by two other officers. (You see, guns not only stop shooters, they also stop hatchet wielders.) I’m willing to bet, though, that the media will try to distance itself from Thompson’s Facebook page, which is a veritable treasure trove of fealty Allah and jihad. Fortunately, Zombie is paying attention, and captured the images for posterity.
There are common threads to all mass shooters or random attackers:
Class 1, which seems to be the smallest class, is composed of people who are genuinely and completely disconnected from any semblance of reality. They’re out there killing because they’ve received a message from Zomblot of the Planet Xdafjsiokd, and that message is to kill all glowing pink rocks . . . and you, clearly, are one of those rocks.
Class 2, which often shows up in schools, is young, male, either a Democrat or from a Democrat home, with divorced parents or a completely absent father, and using psychotropic drugs of one type or another.
Class 3, which the media claims is as fictional as the Loch Ness monster, is the one the rest of us are seeing all over the place, on every continent except for Antarctica: He’s male, probably young (no older than his late 30s), Muslim (either by birth or conversion), and he’s utterly fascinated by jihad, so much so that his attacks are often accompanied by the cry of “Allahu Akbar.”
In all cases, gun control works to the attacker’s advantage, because he has the pleasant sensation of aiming at fish in a barrel, none of whom are equipped to fight back.
The vicious misogyny of the American left
I have to admit that I paid very little attention to the screaming headlines about the alleged Palin family brawl. There’s nothing new about the MSM salivating over any story, true or not, that casts a negative light on a woman who was a vice-presidential candidate six years ago and who, since then, has taken up permanent residence in Leftist heads.
By ignoring the Palin brawl story, though, I missed the real story, which is the vicious, gleeful misogyny that so-called “feminists” display when it comes to Palin women. You see, it turns out that Bristol Palin was, in fact, quite brutally attacked. CNN anchor Carol Costello, who routinely takes up the feminist flag for stories about girl-friend beating in the NFL, reacted with unseemly joy when she had the opportunity to share with her viewers the footage of Bristol Palin’s tearful recounting of a man’s violent attack against her:
“Sit back and enjoy!” Costello exclaimed as she introduced her audience recently to the audio in which Bristol Palin recounts how she was attacked. “You’ll want to hear what she told cops about how it all started.”
Costello also confided in her audience that she had a “favorite part” of the audio which could later become courtroom evidence. Ghoulish.
Charles C. W. Cooke, who freely admits to disliking Palin as a political candidate, wrote a splendid attack against the media’s passion for Palin pain, not to mention the double standard that sees a media blackout when Vice President Joe Biden’s progeny engage in disgraceful and illegal activity:
To take potshots at clownish figures such as Lena Dunham, we have learned, is to invite indignant death threats. And yet, when a veritable legion of male comedians elects to use foul, carnal, and, yes, “gendered” language to dismiss Palin and her family, our contemporary Boudiceas shrug at best and offer endorsements at worst. Sarah Palin, as the abominable bumper sticker has it, “isn’t a woman, she’s a Republican.”
If it is a sign of poor “judgment” to choose as veep someone whose children are a mess, why does Joe Biden get a pass for the conduct of his son, Hunter, who was kicked out of the Navy Reserve for having been discovered using cocaine?
Breaking my usual rule of keeping National Review off my real-me Facebook page (because Leftists would never dream of reading it), I posted Charles Cooke’s post there, along with a comment to the effect that disliking Sarah Palin cannot justify laughing at a brutal physical attack on her child. The response from my Leftist friends was predictable. Since they couldn’t possibly say anything to exonerate this misogyny, they were completely silent.
For more examples of MSM glee in a woman’s brutal assault, check out Ashe Schow’s round-up.
And the vicious misogyny of the Muslim Middle East
This video’s been kicking around for a while, but I only saw it today. It shows a Saudi family hanging an Ethiopian maid up by her heels and beating her with a bat, like a living, breathing pinata. I may be mistaken, but I’m pretty sure I heard some of the people assembled to watch this beating laughing as the maid screamed in agony.
The CDC has admitted that the immigrant flood correlates to measles outbreaks
The MSM doesn’t want you to know this, but conservative news outlets are reporting that the CDC has conceded that there’s definitely a correlation between the illegal Central American immigrants that the Obama administration shipped all over the country without pausing for silly little stuff like quarantines and new measles cases. Other diseases are also following in the illegal immigrants’ tracks:
Measles, respiratory illness, tuberculosis and other communicable diseases continue as a prime concern for the millions of Americans conflicted about the perpetual arrivals of illegal immigrants pouring into the country. While some diseases have emerged from the Philippines, Africa, Asia and Europe, the unprecedented amount of undocumented aliens is a major issue.
Even Hollywood is taking notice as actress Tori Spelling was reportedly admitted and placed in quarantine at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in California Monday for respiratory concerns that some media say could be Enterovirus related.
Hospitals throughout America are reporting record breaking numbers as their emergency rooms are overwhelmed beyond capacity. Figures as of October 20, 2014 show the largest reported cases of these mystery illnesses included over 4,300 children at Children’s Hospital Colorado. In just one day 540 children visited the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and 340 cases were reported by a Mobile, Alabama children’s hospital. Many hospitals have ceased admitting children temporarily as they determine ways to deal with the outbreaks.
Medical labs testing confirm many of these cases are Enterovirus D68 (EV-D68). The Obama Administration has been working overtime to keep the reporting and narrative away from blaming the ongoing illegal and undocumented immigrant invasion into the country. Media reports show at least eight known deaths from EV-D68 in the U.S. in 2014.
Perhaps the White House doesn’t want Americans to know that out of over 70,000 illegal immigrant children who crossed into the U.S. almost 48,000 came from Honduras, Guatemala and Salvador. In these countries measles and the EV-D68 virus are quite common. If we include these children’s family and friends, not listed an “unaccompanied,” over a quarter of a million people from Central and South America have entered the U.S. illegally this year.
Incidentally, eight people have now died from the Enterovirus.
The American medical establishment may be way too complacent about Ebola
We expect the Obama government to tell us that everything is under control when it comes to Ebola. Yeah, sure, if “under control” looks like this:
Meanwhile, even as some doctors are also insisting that our medical system is more than capable of handling and isolating Ebola cases, never mind the possible “E-bowling” habits of infected people, one doctor, who started working in Russia and then came here (and became a Republican), is not so sanguine. He thinks that the medical establishment is grossly underestimating the demands more than 20 Ebola cases would have on our medical system:
When the kidneys no longer work, we start patients on dialysis but how do you safely do it while caring for a patient with Ebola. The answer is you don’t.
The only facilities that could attempt something like this are BL4 isolation wards where the staff practice such techniques while wearing spacesuits. They have dedicated machines that are separated from the other hospital patients. There are only 4 such facilities in the country and the number of such beds is around 20; that is all there is, for the entire country.
When it comes to Ebola research, the irony is so thick you can taste it
A lot of conservatives have been pointing out that part of our problem with Ebola is that the CDC has been so busy spending money on trendy things that it’s had little left for old-fashioned epidemic disease control. In other words, it’s been focusing on salt in diets, obesity, and cigarettes to the exclusion of just about everything else.
Here’s the irony: to the extent that the CDC was able to squeeze in a little actual contagious disease research alongside all its trendy lifestyle work, it did so because of . . . Dick Cheney. Bloomberg explains.
We may start changing our minds about working or partying when sick
When I was a little girl — well, actually even through high school — when I got sick, my mother kept me home. She did so because when she was growing up it was considered extremely rude to spread the cold or flu amongst your classmates, colleagues, and social group.
The results of my mom’s policy were two-fold. First, I started malingering because all I had to do to miss school was say “I don’t feel good.” Second, between real and faked illnesses, I missed way too much school, which affected my grades. It was only when I was in college and beyond that I figured out that, whether at school or at work, unless I was actually keeling over, staying at home would hurt my grades or my career too much.
When my kids were little, I sent them to school when they had colds because keeping them home until the sniffles ended would have meant keeping them home for weeks. All the other moms did the same, and that was fine. Obviously, if the kids had fevers, or vomiting, or diarrhea, things would have been different. But for colds and general yuckiness . . . school it was for the kids (and work for the parents).
During all those elementary school years, none of the kids got terribly sick, and all of us felt that we were doing the appropriate thing by giving our kids’ immune systems a work-out. In addition, because the kids brought everything home, we parents gave our own immune systems a work-out too. Once my kids hit middle school, all of us pretty much stopped getting sick.
What I’m working up to is the fact that, in America, going out into the world when you’re a bit sick means you don’t miss important things and you buff up your immune system. Certainly, no one dies. And really, that’s always been the big difference between my generation and my mother’s generation. In Mom’s time, when people, including kids, got sick, some of them died. They got polio (in America), and measles, mumps, rubella, diphtheria, and scarlet fever. Getting a cold could mean pneumonia and, in a pre-antibiotic era, pneumonia could mean death. The risks of illness were so high they outweighed any potential benefits from attending more school or work.
I mention all this because a Russian-born writer, looking at the E-bowling document in New York, is asking why Americans go to school, and work, and social activities when sick. The answer is that, right up until this disease summer, the downsides were limited and the upsides were huge. I foresee things changing….
Charles Krauthammer says something wonderful about Obama’s bystander presidency
For those of us who have been paying attention, there’s nothing new in Charles Krauthammer’s most recent article about the fact that Obama seems to be a bystander to his own presidency. We know that Obama is always more surprised and then more angry than anyone else, as if the endless management failures during his administration aren’t his fault. If he was a good manager, these things wouldn’t happen. But if he was even a manager who just showed up for work every day, at least he wouldn’t be surprised and the one he would be angry at would be himself.
What’s new is this exquisite paragraph that Krauthammer wrote (bolded emphasis mine):
The one scandal where you could credit the president with genuine anger and obliviousness involves the recent breaches of White House Secret Service protection. The Washington Post described the first lady and president as “angry and upset,” and no doubt they were. But the first Secret Service scandal — the hookers of Cartagena — evinced this from the president: “If it turns out that some of the allegations that have been made in the press are confirmed, then of course I’ll be angry.” An innovation in ostentatious distancing: future conditional indignation.
John Kerry is the rotten fish head at the top of the State Department hierarchy
Hillary was bad; Kerry is worse. (I haven’t forgotten Hillary’s role in the deaths of the Benghazi four. I’m just talking general about her role as leader of the State Department.) Just as a fish rots from the head down, the State Department under Kerry has gone from vaguely hostile to Israel to actively hostile to Israel. Moreover, working in tandem with the rest of the anti-Israel Obama administration, this active hostility is resulting in severe damage to Israel, which is America’s long-standing, most reliable ally in the Middle East — not to mention the only truly free country in that dark, bloodied, benighted region.
John Hinderaker catches Rob Stein, founder of Democracy Now, speaking the truth about power
The Left is always nattering on about “speaking truth to power.” What’s incredibly rare is to catch one of them speaking the truth about power. Rob Stein, however, did do so. I won’t spoil the surprise of this rare burst of honesty. You need to follow this link.
When it comes to Michael Brown’s family, you can’t make these things up
Even before Drudge latched on to it, Joshua Pundit caught the fact that Michael Brown’s family — the one in Ferguson — has come to blows about which family members have the right to milk his death for cash.
Natural selection and vegetarians
I’ve always known that, if you examine a human’s teeth, digestion, and overall health, it’s very clear that we humans are biologically programmed to have meat as part of our diet. What we know now too is that, when it comes to men, the downsides of vegetarianism hit even closer to home.
Meryl Streep to bring Florence Foster Jenkins to the screen
I’ve posted here before about Florence Foster Jenkins, the fabulously wealthy opera aficionado who booked herself into Carnegie hall to share her tuneless, aimless arias with the world. Meryl Streep has been tapped to play Jenkins in some sort of biopic. Little is known about the proposed movie, but I actually think this is a perfect movie for Streep. Because Jenkins lived in pre-media era, Streep will have to be an actress, not just a mimic, and she’s always at her best when she stops parroting other people’s mannerisms and just acts.
San Francisco in her pre-modern heyday
Fred Lyon, a native San Franciscan and professional photographer, loves to take pictures of his home town. The results can be seen at his website and, when it comes to pictures of San Francisco in the 1940s and 1950s, his work is spectacular. Whether one loves the City that once was, as I do, or simply enjoys beautiful black-and-white photography, this is an album that’s worth checking out.
Nature’s colorful bounty
You’ve probably seen most of these pictures before, but they’re so lovely, I wanted to share with you a post that puts all of them together in one place.
Caped Crusader sent me a video that simultaneously made me want to laugh and to cry. Of course, it’s funny that the guys being questioned by the camera man cannot come up with the answer when the answer is embedded in in the question. It elicits the same slightly smug laughter that I always felt watching Jay Leno’s “Jaywalking.” “Boy, those yokels sure are dumb! Ha! Ha! Ha!”
Watching these guys, though, with the backdrop of Ferguson in my mind quickly killed my laughter, though, and simply depressed me. I got even more depressed when Tom Elia emailed this little tidbit: Ferguson, Missouri, which in 25 years has shifted from being a slightly white minority enclave of St. Louis to a primarily black majority community has as its second biggest revenue source the fines and penalties paid into its municipal court:
A report issued just last week by the nonprofit lawyer’s group ArchCity Defenders notes that in the court’s 36 three-hour sessions in 2013, it handled 12,108 cases and 24,532 warrants. That is an average of 1.5 cases and three warrants per Ferguson household. Fines and court fees for the year in this city of just 21,000 people totaled $2,635,400.
The Daily Beast cites the above data to show that it’s in the police’s best interests to have an adversarial relationship with residents in Ferguson, and that’s true. But it’s also a reminder that, since the Civil Rights movement effectively came to an end in 1964 when the Civil Rights Act federalized the movement, it’s become big business to keep blacks institutionally victimized. Worse, it’s a business in which blacks are complicit.
Let me say here and now that there is absolutely nothing genetically inherent in blacks that leads them to their disproportionate representation amongst the ranks of the violent, the uneducated, and the fatherless. These are cultural traits, not hereditary ones. Moreover, contrary to multicultural mythology, cultural is not fixed. It can change.
The problem we face now is that, since the 1960s “Great Society,” the political and social culture in America, all of which hew Left, have consistently told blacks, “You don’t need to change. You’re perfect as you are. It’s we, the whites, who need to change.” In other words, blacks are the ultimate fulfillment of the self-esteem movement that started in California and picked up steam to infect the United States.
The self-esteem movement tells children that, no matter what, they’re wonderful. It sets no goals, offers no examples, makes no demands. It just says, “You’re wonderful.”
What sounds wonderful in theory proves to be disastrous in fact. Rather than creating a “wonderful” generation of self-confident, moral, self-disciplined, ambitious, strong young people, we’ve created a generation of self-satisfied yet insecure, morally weak, undisciplined parasites. Not all of them, of course, with those saved from the movement having either been home schooled or raised within a home environment that hewed to more traditional values.
Telling many of the latter type of homes are filled with people who, in Charles Murray’s words, don’t preach what they practice. Within their homes, they drive their children to succeed; in the public forum, though, they dare not tell anyone, especially minorities, that the secret to success in America is to work hard at school, to work hard at work, and to stay on the right side of the law.
American blacks are the ne plus ultra of the self-esteem movement. All criticism of them is banned, including self-criticism. They cannot reform their self-destructive behaviors, because they have been programmed to be narcissistic: they are completely armored against their sins, so armored that they cannot even modify their behavior to blunt what they see as the consequences of inimical behavior from their “enemy” — with the enemy being all people and institutions that are not black and that, therefore, can be blamed for the desperate plight in which American blacks find themselves.
I wrote the above words on Friday, meaning to publish them on Friday and then, when that fell through, meaning to publish them on Saturday. Clearly, I missed both of my self-imposed deadlines. My first duty is to my family, and my family has been demanding. In a way, that’s a good thing, because I had the opportunity to add to my thoughts on this subject.
Tomorrow, the Watcher’s Council will publish a forum asking council members to predict whether a grand jury will indict Darren Wilson, the police officer who allegedly shot Michael Brown. I’m going to give you a preview of the answer I sent the Watcher, since it’s really a continuation of the thoughts I was developing here:
I hate to say this, but I think whether Officer Wilson is indicted depends on the jury’s racial composition. I can’t say what a majority white jury would do, because I don’t have the evidence before me. However, sadly, I have no doubt whatsoever that a majority black grand jury would issue an indictment for first degree murder.
This leads me to a different issue. Back in 1939, when Hattie McDaniel was the first black woman to win an Oscar for best supporting actress as Mammy in Gone With The Wind, she made a brief speech:
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, fellow members of the motion picture industry and honored guests: This is one of the happiest moments of my life, and I want to thank each one of you who had a part in selecting me for one of their awards, for your kindness. It has made me feel very, very humble; and I shall always hold it as a beacon for anything that I may be able to do in the future. I sincerely hope I shall always be a credit to my race and to the motion picture industry. My heart is too full to tell you just how I feel, and may I say thank you and God bless you.
It later turned out that the studio wrote those words for McDaniel, especially the bit about her sincere “hope I shall always be a credit to my race,” a line that deeply humiliated her.
I can understand McDaniel’s humiliation about having any words put in her mouth, especially words that emphasized her race, but I’ve never found the notion of being a credit to ones race distasteful. Perhaps that’s because I’m Jewish, and we Jews, like the blacks, have always been the “other” race.
What one Jew does always has the potential to be a negative stereotype applied to all people. Thus, I found Bernie Madoff’s frauds disgusting, because they destroyed people’s livelihoods, but I also found them embarrassing because, as a Jew, I hate it when a fellow Jew feeds into a negative Jewish stereotype.
One of the things I find so incomprehensible about modern American blacks is that they do not impose standards on their fellow blacks. There is no expectation of a self-correcting mechanism. If you’re a black who does bad things, you’re not someone who brings shame on the black community. You are, instead, just another victim, along with the black teens you’ve killed, the Korean or Indian store owners you robbed and pistol whipped, and the whites you injured or murdered in a “knock out” game. The black community, rather than denouncing a drugged-out, weaponed-up, murderous black teen as a disgrace to the race is embraced and has his image printed on t-shirts.
Thinking about it, what I’ve just said isn’t a different issue at all. It explains why I’m certain that a majority- or all-black grand jury would indict the Ferguson police officer in the blink of an eye. As far as they’re concerned, blacks are always the victims no matter how degraded or violent their behavior. And if it’s always someone else’s fault, an indictment against whichever “someone else” happens to be available is a no-brainer. Racial pride, rather than bringing with it high standards, means no standards whatsoever.
I wrote the above words about violence, but they apply with equal weight to education — a concept that has me circling back to the video that opens this post. America has never heeded Frederick Douglas’s words just to let the black man be:
Instead, having transported African-Americans to this shore, we’ve meddled relentlessly, not just with their persons, but with their culture. What began as an enslavement of their bodies has continued as an enslavement of their souls. They are as chained by this perverted “self esteem movement” as they ever were by whips and overseers. Because they are relentlessly told that they can do no wrong, they are forever foreclosed from the insights and opportunities that would enable them to do things right.
I’ll leave you with Bill Whittle’s indignation about the realities of black life — both as victim and as criminal — about the political system that refuses to acknowledge this reality, and about the race mongers who, along with prisons and townships, profit mightily from a black culture willfully denied insights about itself so that it can change its culture for the better:
Fundamentally, it is not racist to tell African-Americans: “You are just like me. Your life will always be buffeted by forces beyond your control, but I believe that, like me, you came into the world with drive, intelligence, and the capacity to be a moral person. I agree that many of you live in desperately awful environments, but you have it within in you to rise above that and move beyond it. Study hard, work hard, obey the law, and don’t let cretins, whether in your community or in law enforcement or anywhere else, cause you to fall off the path of hard work and righteousness.”
It is racist, though, to tell blacks: “You’re black, so you’re helpless.”
The kids return to school on Wednesday and I have the hope — faint, admittedly, but still the hope — that my life will return to normal then. I’m not complaining about life during the summer. I’ve enjoyed sleeping in every day, I’ve enjoyed the freedom from schedules, and I’ve enjoyed the vitality that comes with having the neighborhood teenagers move into my house.
Still, I like normal too. I like being up and about early, I like that wonderful moment when everyone is gone and the house is mine for six hours, and I like the quiet rhythm that enables me to read, think, and blog. During summer, because my quiet time comes so erratically and lasts so briefly, I cannot seem to get in the groove.
Until normal arrives in my life (assuming it ever does), here are a few interesting links.
Making shocking comparisons about Obama, mainstream media turns racist
What’s shocking about WaPo editor Jackson Diehl’s post discussing Obama’s hubris isn’t how mean and angry the tone is. No. What’s really terrible is that this WaPo editor is no longer comparing Obama to Lincoln or even Reagan; he’s comparing him to George Bush Jr. Wow. That’s hate speech.
Thomas Frank : fool or plant
Steven Hayward points out that Thomas Frank’s advice for Progressives who want to make conservatives happy is to (a) ignore reality and (b) put into place the kind of agenda that conservatives have sought for decades. Hayward is correct that Frank is either as dumb as a post or a brilliant conservative plant.
The perverse pleasure of getting under a Leftist’s skin
One of my liberal friends posted on Facebook the fact that the autopsy report revealed that Michael “Big Mike” Brown, formerly of Ferguson, Missouri, sustained six gunshot wounds, two of which were in the head. He commented that this was an excessive number. His boyfriend chimed in — yes, excessive!
I wrote polite words to the effect that if, solely for the sake of argument, one accepts as true the shooting officer’s version of events, six is not an unreasonable number of bullets to put into a huge man who is charging towards you with apparently malevolent intent. Not all shots make their mark and a big man may keep moving long after he’s sustained serious, even fatal, injuries.
I added that the “shoot to wound” idea exists only in novels and movies. Real cops — and I’ve spoken with a few — know that, if the situation is bad enough to merit shooting, you shoot to kill. I got this delightful response, not from my friend, but from his boyfriend:
Sorry . . . that just doesn’t match up with the facts as reported. It’s nothing less than stupendous how those of you on the lunatic right become apologists for the very same fucking governmental forces you shriek are taking us into “socialism”, “tyranny”, and whatever other crap you come up with. How pathetic and embarrassing to all Americans. UNfuckingbelievable.
When I went to reply, I saw that my friend had deleted both my comment and his boyfriend’s response. I was so delighted with the boyfriend’s response, though, that I mischievously re-posted my original comment, adding that it was significant that the shots entered front-to-back and not vice-versa. It now appears one of the shots may have been from back to front, which raises the question of whether that was the first, kill shot, with the others coming as he lay helpless on the ground, or if it was a final shot as his body fell.
I thought it would be lovely to elicit another one of those tirades. When someone is so viciously paranoid, it’s nice to tease it out so that all the world can see him for what he really is.
Conservatives don’t hate gays
I’m part of a majority! Sixty-eight percent of Republicans would willingly vote for a gay candidate who shared their values. I’m in that 68%. Ever since I’ve been a child, I’ve been neither racist, nor homophobic, nor religionist, nor anything else but VALUES-IST. If you share my values, I don’t care about whatever else you have going on with you.
I’m also with those conservatives (60%) who would be upset if their children were gay. This isn’t because I hate gays, and I wouldn’t hate my child. It’s because gays are statistically less likely to live lives free from substance abuse, spousal abuse, depression, and suicide. It’s also because I’ve known many gays and their lives tend to be less stable and more inclined to excess than the straight people I know. In other words, it’s not the sexual orientation that would disturb me, it’s my deep worry as a parent that my child would be setting out on a potentially very unhappy and dangerous life path.
Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel
Edward Snowden, who threw himself into Chinese and Russian hands with suitcases full of NSA secrets, dressed himself up in libertarian patriotism: I’m protecting you, the American people, from your government, he promised. As someone who fears overreaching government, I could fully understand those who argued that he was performing an important public service. But how do you explain away the fact that the vast bulk of data he stole related to national security, not homeland surveillance? It looks as if he may be precisely the type of “patriot” scoundrel Johnson was thinking of when he coined his famous saying — someone who covers up despicable acts by waving the flag.
The Left’s selective concern for victims of violence
Bernard Goldberg is singing an old, familiar song, but it certainly deserves a reprise — Leftists, including black Leftists, have no sympathy for blacks killed by blacks, or whites killed by blacks. Their outrage is reserved solely for blacks killed by whites, even though their number is exceptionally small, especially when compared to those blacks who die at the hands of their racial fellows. This outrage, then, has nothing to do with victims of violent crime, and everything to do with fomenting race wars.
That Kung Pao something-or-other was delicious! Now, what did you say was in that dish?
I wonder how Thomas Friedman is going to explain this one away in defending his beloved Chinese communist government: dogs are for eating, says Chinese government.
(Thanks, as always, to Caped Crusader, who has a knack for finding these great images and posters.)
Yesterday, the phone or the doorbell rang every 10-20 minutes all afternoon and evening. We had a rotating cast of characters for dinner, one of my dogs hid for the day, and the other dog barked itself into laryngitis. I have no complaints, as I like a social house, but there’s a lot to be said for just a little less sociability.
Today has been relatively quiet, so I was able to do six loads of laundry and take care of a good 300 emails. I still have my snail-mail inbox to clear out, but overall I feel remarkably productive. The dogs are happy too.
I don’t know if a review of the news will result in any happiness, but it’s still a task I feel compelled to perform.
Ferguson reveals seemingly intractable problems in modern American cities
The more I read about events in Ferguson, the more I know that two principles I hold are correct, even though I don’t know how much either principle applies to the specific events in Ferguson. The first principle is that the police are and should be people’s servants, not their military masters.
The second principle is that the “wilding” that blacks turn to when the police offend them solves nothing about their dismal situation throughout America’s Democrat-controlled cities, but definitely makes it reasonable for police to seek protection behind military gear.
This is a nasty chicken and egg dance, with blacks complaining (illogically, but it still drives their behavior) that police brutality drives them to resist arrest and run riot through cities, effectively destroying their own communities, and police complaining (more credibly) that with blacks running riot, the only way a sane person would become a police officer is to bury himself behind massive armor and weaponry.
Mark Steyn certainly finds much to blame on both sides of the dispute raging between Ferguson’s blacks and its police force.
Even as cops and blacks blame each other, both should be blaming Democrat/Progressive Big City politics
The only place that neither blacks nor police are looking in order to place blame is the one place that ought to be blamed: The urban Democrat/Progressive political machine. Kevin D. Williamson, who has traveled to most of America’s major cities, the vast majority of which are Democrat-run and being run into the ground, explains just how badly the Progressive experiment is playing out in these places:
Progressives spent a generation imposing taxes and other expenses on urban populations as though the taxpaying middle class would not relocate. They protected the defective cartel system of public education, and the union money and votes associated with it, as though middle-class parents would not move to places that had better schools. They imposed burdens on businesses, in exchange for more union money and votes, as though businesses would not shift production elsewhere. They imposed policies that disincentivized stable family arrangements as though doing so would have no social cost.
And they did so while adhering to a political philosophy that holds that the state, not the family or the market, is the central actor in our lives, that the interests of private parties — be they taxpayers or businesses — can and indeed must be subordinated to the state’s interests, as though individuals and families were nothing more than gears in the great machine of politics. The philosophy of abusive eminent domain, government monopolies, and opportunistic taxation is also the philosophy of police brutality, the repression of free speech and other constitutional rights, and economic despair. Frank Rizzo was not a paradox — he was an inevitability. When life is reduced to the terms in which it is lived in the poorest and most neglected parts of Chicago or Detroit, the welfare state is the police state.
I would recommend Williamson’s article as a must-read and, if your Leftist friends can be brought to read something published in — gasp! — National Review, it’s an article that you should share with those who haven’t already seen the conservative, individualist, small government, small-l libertarian light.
Resisting arrest is asking for trouble
Bob Weir, a former police officer, explains that “brutality” is not an unreasonable response to get from a police officer if you make the decision to resist arrest.
And of course, there’s always the media to fan the flames
Sadie send me this image, along with some of her pungent, trenchant commentary:
A reprise of the Trayon Martin summer hit of 2012. Rev. Al and Rev. Jesse once again, play themselves. Benjamin Crump, Esq. has been recalled to the stage. Rioters, looters and extras, against a backdrop of staged outrage are seen running, dancing, shouting – looting included. Audience members and media are encouraged to bring a cell phone to record the experience.
Ferguson is making for some pretty strange political bed fellows
A young Marine friend of mine (who grew up in an incredibly liberal Marin household) posted this excellent Matt Walsh article saying that the police officers aren’t to blame for the anarchy in Ferguson. A young entrepreneur I know here in Marin, whose Facebook posts hew liberal, but who has a libertarian streak, liked the article, commenting that you have to “suck up reality.”
Events in Ferguson are making for some strange political bedfellows. Perhaps we might see a paradigm shift coming soon….
Obama, the bored, disaffected, disenchanted, disengaged American President
I’m not a Joe Scarborough fan, but I agree with Pete Wehner in thinking that Scarborough was correct when, on the Hugh Hewitt show, he stated that Obama has simply checked out of the presidency. Although motives are irrelevant — all that matters is the fact that Obama’s not playing president any more — Wehner still speculates as to his motives, and I still find the speculation interesting:
What could possibility explain this attitude? It may be that Mr. Obama was drawn to the job not for the right reasons but because he viewed the presidency as a new mountain to climb, a prize to win, as a way to feed his unusually large ego (even for a politician). It may also be that Mr. Obama, with his presidency crumbling, is like a petulant child who wants to pick up his marbles and leave. He was fine serving as president when he was adored and well liked; now that things are going south he appears to have emotionally “checked out,” to use Scarborough’s phrase.
The curse of the golf course
Daniel Greenfield has noticed that Obama starts wars when he’s on vacation near a golf course, while bad actors seem to time their bad acts to coincide with Obama’s golf game. The incessant golf games, which once were a sore point only for grumpy conservatives, are beginning to dismay everyone.
There’s something unseemly about our president’s obsession with golf. Of course, the golf games are perfect fodder for political cartoonists, who see the golf course as a metaphor for Obama’s singular absence from and disinterest in a world in flames around him. Don’t believe me? Just check out Steven Hayward’s cartoon round-up for the week.
The terrorist negotiating strategy
No, I haven’t forgotten poor, beleaguered Israel, even though I chose not to lead with it in this round-up.
My very first item about Hamas put me strongly in mind of Jeff Dunham’s Achmed The Dead Terrorist, whose catch-phrase whenever things don’t go his way is “Silence! I kill you!”
Hamas has now issued an ultimatum regarding its peace talks with Israel. Paraphased, it amounts to “Accept all our conditions or we kill you!” Last I heard, that’s not how good-faith negotiations are supposed to work.
The world doesn’t care about dead JEWISH kids
A bereaved Israeli mother, whose teenage daughter died in a terrorist attack during the Second Intifadah, reminds us that the world doesn’t inevitably shed tears when children die in war. For example, when her precious daughter was one of hundreds who died in attacks deliberately targeted at Israeli/Jewish children, the world had nothing to say.
The IDF has a photo-gallery summing up this summer’s war
The IDF has collected 17 photographs summing up the reality of the Israel/Gaza war. Some of them show the bombs bursting in air over Israel and how frightening and destructive those bombs are, Iron Dome notwithstanding. Others show Gazan residents lined up as useful idiots and human shields for Hamas, as well as the fact that Israel treats these poor fools with incredible decency. Still others show the depth, breadth, and imaginative destructive power of the Hamas armory in Gaza.
It’s like a joke . . . “This Travis County D.A. walked out of a bar, dead drunk….”
The Rick Perry indictment is a joke. That’s no surprise to me, frankly. Travis County is famous for its corrupt legal system.
Back when I was in law school, three Texas Supreme Court judges were under investigation for accepting bribes. Indeed, at our annual musical review, which spoofed the movie Grease, I distinctly remember that one of the songs had lyrics that referred to a scam in which attorneys appearing before the court had bribed the judges with lavish trips:
We go together like V&E [Vinson & Elkins], F&J (Fulbright & Jaworski), and Jones & Day
We’re graduating and going on to sweat and cram for the July bar exam
We’ll clerk for judges and
Fill their briefs with legalese, and Vegas trips with attorneys.
I mean, jeez, if an Obama stalwart like David Axelrod is unimpressed by the indictment, you know it’s shaky. For more solid legal reasons, Eugene Volokh also thinks the indictment is unsustainable. So good for Rick Perry to fight back, and I hope he fights back hard.
For those of you new to this story, Rosemary Lehmberg, the Travis County D.A. got arrested for drunk driving, pleaded guilty, and served 45 days. I’ll let Duane Paterson pick up the story:
Rick Perry thought her to be a disgrace, and wanted her to resign. She didn’t. So he took the next step and threatened to veto funding for her office. In response, a grand jury handed down an abuse of power indictment for coercive use of a veto late this afternoon. So the woman who was belligerent and intoxicated stays, Rick Perry is the bad guy and needs to go. Right. Got it.
By any standard, Lehmberg’s behavior was disgraceful. She pleaded guilty to a .23, almost .24, blood alcohol level (almost three times the legal limit), was oppositional with the arresting officers, and tried to use her political heft to avoid the charges.
Here’s the arrest video:
And here’s the video of her doing her “do you know who I am and who my friends are?” routine:
And for those who aren’t conversant with that blood alcohol level, Ace has a handy-dandy (and funny) cheat sheet.
Gene Simmons fights back against political correctness and in favor of immigrants learning English
I hate Gene Simmons, the KISS rocker. (It was the snake-like tongue that did it for me. I hate the tongue in Miley Cyrus too.) However, I very much admire Gene Simmons, the American immigrant who courageously speaks truth to political correctness. His latest outburst is about the criminally wrongful act of insisting that immigrants to this country shouldn’t be forced to learn English.
As a sort of aside about political correctness, my daughter said that she tried to watch Robin William’s movie Hook. She thought that the premise — Peter Pan returns to Neverland as an adult — intriguing, but hated that the casting was manifestly done to meet a racial quota. There were carefully calibrated numbers of Asian, black, white, and Hispanic boys. She said “The acting was awful, even for a 90s movie, so it was obvious that they didn’t choose the best actors; they just chose actors to be the right race.”
All I could do was agree with her. I found the movie unwatchable back in the day and for the same reason. I added, because I can never resist moralizing, that political correctness destroys everything it touches: art, humor, free speech, creativity, education, etc.
What patriotism used to look like in the mainstream
Back in 1970, John Wayne hosted a July 4th special celebrating America. Can you imagine something like this being made nowadays for mainstream TV, staring mainstream stars? I can’t. It’s simply impossible to imagine:
Modern feminism has nothing to do with freedom or equality
My wonderful sister-in-law reminded me of a Tumblr site I’d meant to mention, but then forgot. It’s called Women Against Feminism, and has women explaining why they feel empowerment comes about when they’re not feminists.
I was speaking to a young Swede today who expressed surprise that I chose to stay home as much as possible to raise my own children, rather than go to work and have the state pay for some other women to raise my children. He said that, because of “equality” women are expected to work. He was even more surprised when I suggested that forcing women to work is just as bad as the old days, when women were refused the right to work. Both deny women the freedom of choice. That thought had never occurred to him.
(Thanks to Caped Crusader for this amazing picture round-up.)