Thursday, April 30, 2015

The Burning Of Baltimore: A Coda

     I’m fairly sure my Gentle Readers are all thoroughly sick of the Baltimore atrocities by now...but I want to take this opportunity to make you all much, much sicker:

     House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer defended Baltimore city officials’ reaction to the riots erupting in the city by asking for more federal tax dollars.

     The Daily Caller asked Hoyer, a Maryland Democrat, if the city’s leadership had failed, since the West Baltimore area was still being rebuilt from the 1968 riots. Hoyer replied, “We have to invest in making sure that we have proper infrastructure and proper housing so that we have neighborhoods that are safe and that we have safe conditions in which to live.”

     “But I wouldn’t call it a failure, certainly, of Baltimore,” he added. “But we’re going to have to as a country invest if we’re going to have the kinds of communities we want.”

     A Democrat has responded to a question about the failure of Baltimore’s “leadership” – merciful God, how I hate the notion that political officials are our “leaders!” – by calling for more tax dollars paid into the Treasury by Americans from other cities and states to be expended on “infrastructure.”

     What an incredible surprise.

     It’s been said many times (now and then by me) that when a politician, or a political interest group, proposes the same “solution” to every “problem” that comes down the turnpike, you can bet your last dollar that the “solution,” not the “problem,” is what the politician or group really cares about.

     Add to that the observable, terrifying rate of failure of political “solutions” to proposed “problems.” Quoth H. L. Mencken on “the sex problem,” by which he was referring to the pervasiveness of prostitutes (and customers for them) in cities of significant size:

     There is no half-baked ecclesiastic, bawling in his galvanized-iron temple on a suburban lot, who doesn’t know precisely how it ought to be dealt with. There is no fantoddish old suffragette, sworn to get her revenge on man, who hasn’t a sovereign remedy for it. There is not a shyster of a district attorney, ambitious for higher office, who doesn’t offer to dispose of it in a few weeks, given only enough help from the city editors. And yet, by the same token, there is not a man who has honestly studied it and pondered it, bringing sound information to the business, and understanding of its inner difficulties and a clean and analytical mind, who doesn’t believe and hasn’t stated publicly that it is intrinsically and eternally insoluble. For example, Havelock Ellis. His remedy is simply a denial of all remedies. He admits that the disease is bad, but he shows that the medicine is infinitely worse, and so he proposes going back to the plain disease, and advocates bearing it with philosophy, as we bear colds in the head, marriage, the noises of the city, bad cooking and the certainty of death. Man is inherently vile—but he is never so vile as when he is trying to disguise and deny his vileness. No prostitute was ever so costly to a community as a prowling and obscene vice crusader, or as the dubious legislator or prosecuting officer who jumps at such swine pipe.

     Every political “solution” requires three things:

  1. Laws,
  2. Hands,
  3. Funds.

     When the “solution” fails to eliminate or substantially reduce the “problem,” what follows?

  1. Legislators virtually never repeal the applicable law; that would be an admission of error.
  2. Those who “work” for the agency charged with the “solution” have livelihoods to protect, and will fight tooth and nail to retain them – even to enlarge them.
  3. The money not spent on government employees is spent on material and outside “experts,” who acquire an interest in the perpetuation of the “solution” at least as strong as that of the government employees!

     Sociologists call this an “Iron Triangle,” which defends its politically created turf with the ferocity of a lioness protecting her cubs. This is the prime example of the importance of individual motivation and its priority over notions of “civic virtue:” To those with a personal stake in the “solution,” its perpetuation outranks the “problem” in importance.

     Theorists will theorize, moralists will moralize, and political strategists will politically strategize until the Moon should fall from the sky. None of them will ever change that central fact about government and government programs. It is the key to why all political systems, including anarchism, are inherently unstable.

     Race riots aren’t new. We’ve had fifty years to get accustomed to them. They invariably feature Negro mobs running rampant through urban districts, smashing and looting. There’s always a triggering event, of course, but the trigger is seldom of enduring importance. What matters is the facility racialist mouthpieces have developed at inciting anger among American Negroes, who have been remorselessly propagandized about how they’re “oppressed.” Raise that pitch high enough and they’ll riot.

     I’m about to say something that’s likely to offend a great many persons, so those with excessively tender sensibilities or generally weak constitutions should leave the website at this point.

     Have we cleared the room adequately? Good, ‘cause here I go:

When was the last riot by American Caucasians?

     It doesn’t matter whether the disparity is a consequence of intellectual deficiency, emotional susceptibility, or simple lust to loot and destroy. Negroes riot; Caucasians don’t. More, they’ll riot regardless of the merits of the triggering event. All they require is “just cause,” and yes, those are “sneer quotes.”

     John Derbyshire touched off a huge controversy with his column “The Talk: Nonblack Version.” Yet not one of his critics could refute his assertions. What those assertions amount to is that concentrations of American Negroes constitute a hazard to the life and property of non-Negroes.

     I submit that we have had enough demonstrations of this proposition to grant it our confidence.

     Negro racialists know their audience. They know how easily it can be whipped into a furor. They know how little can be done to restrain a black mob bent upon looting and destruction, if the authorities are unwilling to use force to the necessary degree and in the necessary amount. They know that at least for the present, the response of “authorities” to such riots is far more likely to be conciliatory – Steny Hoyer’s approach – than punitive. Last and most significant, they know how to profit personally from the sequelae.

     There will be more such riots, in more cities, over ever more trivial occurrences.

     Draw the moral.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Quickies: Crisis-Unwasted Dept.

     Rahm Emanuel laid down the maxim “You never let a crisis go to waste,” and come Hell or high water, Barack Hussein Obama will abide by it:

     During a joint press conference with the Japanese Prime Minister Tuesday, Barack Obama used a question about Baltimore to further his views on federalizing local police forces without calling it federalization.

     The Obama task force on policing is in Baltimore along with the attorney from the Civil Rights Division to push his agenda, he told the assembled....

     Barack Obama said there were “too many instances of what appears to be…uh…police officers interacting with individuals, primarily African-American, often poor, in ways that raise troubling questions. And it comes up what seems like once a week now, or every couple a weeks.”

     He got his digs in at the Republican Congress but that’s an aside.

     The federal police proposals from his task force will make a difference, he claimed Tuesday.

     He has invented yet another crisis, using advisors like Al Sharpton, to put the federal government’s hand in police work....

     Barack Obama claimed today that the problem is he can’t federalize the police. Implementation of his plan would do exactly what he says he can’t do.

     “We’re going to be working systematically with every jurisdiction around the country to implement solutions we know work,” he said today. “We can’t just leave this to the police,” Barack Obama added ominously.

     Rep. Elijah Cummings called for a police czar who would undoubtedly federalize policing.

     Al Sharpton, a racist agitator and White House adviser, will be in Baltimore to teach the community how to march “peacefully”, which is merely a more covert style of aggression and force.

     A couple weeks ago, Sharpton called for the federalization of police. “There must be national policy and national law on policing,” the race terrorist said. “We’ve got to have national law to protect people against these continued questions.”

     Remember Obama orating during his 2008 campaign that we need a domestic security force that’s “just as strong, just as well armed, as our military” -- ? Given the steady militarization of police forces country-wide, I think we can guess where he hopes to get it.

Quickies: Their Enemy

     Never let it be said that the Left failed to recognize an enemy:

     Whole Foods was criticized Tuesday for their efforts to support local law enforcement who have been working tirelessly to secure Baltimore after riots took hold of the city Monday evening.

     “We teamed up with Whole Foods Market Mt. Washington to make sandwiches for the men and women keeping Baltimore safe. We are so thankful to have them here and they’re pumped for Turkey & Cheese,” one of the supermarket’s local store’s posted online.

     Almost immediately, Whole Foods found themselves in a firestorm of controversy. Many were upset that they were feeding law enforcement instead of children in need of food.

     Mind you, those “children in need of food” are merely hungry – and most of them needlessly so, as their parents are on a welfare gravy train of unprecedented opulence. Let their parents shoulder the responsibility for their kids. The Guardsmen are doing a dangerous job under stressful conditions.

     Of course, the above constitutes “welfare-shaming,” or some such. Well, damn it all, it’s shameful to bear children out of wedlock, and an unforgivable delinquency to render one’s children dependent on the State. Such parents should be ashamed.

     Anyway, at last we have an answer to the age-old question “Who will feed those selfsame Guardsmen?” It’s Whole Foods!

     (What’s that you say? That wasn’t the age-old question? Oh. Never mind.)

Quickies: War With Iran?

     This is a blatant act of war:

     A cargo ship was reportedly stopped and seized by the Iranian navy on Tuesday, according to multiple reports from the region.

     Iran fired at the cargo ship and has directed it to Bandar Abbas port on the southern coast of Iran, according to a report by Al Arabiya News Channel.

     The Pentagon says the ship at the center of the dispute is the MV Maersk Tigris, and is flagged from the Marshall Islands, according to Reuters.

     Separately, Iran's official news agency said the ship was "stopped and seized" by Iranian warships.

     "The Iranian Navy has confiscated the American trade vessel with all its 34 crew for trespassing on Iran's territorial waters in the Persian Gulf," Fars News Agency reported.

     The defense of the Marshall Islands, though they’re nominally an independent nation-state, is guaranteed by the United States. Therefore:

     Col. Steve Warren, a Pentagon spokesman, said the cargo ship’s master had initially refused an Iranian order to move further into Iranian waters, but after the warning shots were fired the MV Maersk Tigris complied.

     Warren said the cargo ship has been boarded by Iranians, but no one has been injured and no Americans are involved.

     Warren said the cargo ship issued a distress call and the US Naval Forces Central Command, based in the area, sent a US destroyer and an aircraft to the area of the incident to monitor the situation.

     While the Marshall Islands is a sovereign country, the U.S. “has full authority and responsibility for security and defense of the Marshall Islands,” according to the U.S. State Department. Maersk, the shipping line whose vessel was commandeered, is one of the largest employers of U.S. merchant mariners, and “operate[s], manage[s] and maintain[s] ships for the U.S. government ships in preposition and surge sealift capacities,” according to its website.

     The British backed down from a similar confrontation with Iran. At the moment it looks as if the U.S. will display more resolve. At the moment.

     Given the nature of the current Administration, uncertainty will reign until the matter is fully resolved.

Quickies: I’m Not The Only Prophet Of Doom

     Dystopic lays it down with beautiful concision:

     A Liberal acquaintance of mine accidentally hit upon a fundamental truth. He linked to this little gem from Salon: Baltimore’s violent protesters are right: Smashing police cars is a legitimate political strategy. Now, before you think that I’ve gone off my rocker and moved over to the Progressive side, consider that I am not commenting on the morality or rightness involved in the act. Francis has completely demolished any pretense of morality or uprightness on the part of the protesters, or their political masters. He has done a more thorough job of denouncing that than I can do.

     No, what I’m saying is that this is a carefully calculated political act of violence on the part of the Left. There is another word that meets the definition of “political act of violence,” and that is WAR.

     Salon’s Leftist writers have inadvertently revealed the truth: America is at war with itself. The Civil War has already begun, but like the quiet lull after the first shots across Fort Sumter, this is only the opening act, and many people on both sides still cling to the delusional notion that things can go back to the way they were, that peaceful compromise is still possible. This woman, admirably berating her foolish son out in the open for participating in the riots, might think so. But individuals like her are few and far between in the current unpleasantness.

     I’ve written several times that we’re engaged in a race war. It’s not inconsistent that the “larger Left” should find this congenial to its own designs. Their agenda has always been destruction. For that reason, Salon has done the Right a large favor by pulling off the covers and revealing the conflict for what it is.

     The Left’s nodding editorialists will soon regret their candor.

Quickies: A Profile In Corporate Courage

     Ace brings the news:

     A fat-loss supplement company called "Protein World' began running this ad:

     This upset the Social Justice Tumblrinas, who began arguing that Everyone already has a "beach body," because everyone -- well, every woman -- already has the perfect body with no need of improvement. (Note that feminists are usually critical of men who could stand to do some pushups.)

     There followed the usual campaign of strident, angry harassment by feminist viragoes. But God bless ‘em, the Protein Power management refused to give in:

Speaking to Breitbart, the company’s defiant Head of Global Marketing Richard Staveley says: “The campaign absolutely, categorically will not be pulled by Protein World. We have 300,000 happy customers and we will not pander to this a particularly vociferous minority.

     “There’s no body shaming going on. Genuinely, 100 per cent this was driven by talking to our female customers and asking them what they want.

     “As for the vandalising of our posters, a lot of what we have seen has been PhotoShopped, so they’re not even real defacements. I’d be alarmed if people are actually clamber across train tracks to deface posters and put their lives at risk.

     “My position is: we won’t stand for that and TFL [Transport for London] are working with us on this. We are compiling admissions of vandalism against us and we will look into them. I don’t see us having any problem with us reporting individuals for vandalising our property. The law on this is clear.”

     The last word goes to Ace:

     Oh, and Protein World called the feminists -- many of whom are vandalizing their advertisements, or even threatening to destroy their offices -- "terrorists."

     At last, a corporate management that refuses to be bullied by a militant victimist cult! Bravo!

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

What Will Follow

     The riots in Baltimore are horrifying enough. But when you combine those savageries with this atrocity and this one, the aggregate becomes overwhelming.

     Life and property are not safe in the United States of America. Neither is any other “freedom” we once enjoyed.

     Ace suggests that a fission is coming:

The fascist SJWs, and their easy way with all corporations (such as GoFundMe), plus Saturday night spurred me to say aloud what I've thought to myself for years:

     It's time to begin seriously discussing secession.

     As the man says: the center cannot hold.

     No one actually seems happy in this national marriage.

     It's time to admit this and separate.

     If such a schism could be achieved peacefully, it would be best for all concerned. There’s just one little problem: the political elite would not sit still for it.

     I’ve written on too many occasions to bother backlinking to them that power is most attractive to those that love power above all other things, and that their lust for power naturally propels them to the top of such edifices. I’m not the first to make that point, of course; Friedrich Hayek got there well before me. But Hayek’s insight, when combined with a reflection on the nature of political power, yields a result more terrifying than any riot:

     He who lusts for power over others is inherently evil. I trust this requires no great argument in its justification. The evil man, once he has some degree of power, will use it to acquire more, for power is a drug that doesn’t sate. However, the enjoyment of power requires that it be used. For, as O’Brien said to Winston in 1984, to enjoy your power, you must be actually coercing your victim at the moment:
     ‘How does one man assert his power over another, Winston?’
     Winston thought. ‘By making him suffer,’ he said.
     ‘Exactly. By making him suffer. Obedience is not enough. Unless he is suffering, how can you be sure that he is obeying your will and not his own? Power is in inflicting pain and humiliation. Power is in tearing human minds to pieces and putting them together again in new shapes of your own choosing.’

     Political power – i.e., power over others – is relational in nature. Its wielder requires victims upon whom to exercise his power. If he has no victims, his power is illusory. But by extension, the magnitude of his power can be measured by the number of his victims.

     The political class of this country is no better than that of any other. It will employ every means at its disposal to keep all of its victims...and they dispose of quite a number of such means.

     Fission into two nations would also be opposed by those on the Left who appreciate that their fortunes are made possible by those of us who differ with them. Allow me to start from Robert A. Heinlein’s partition of “Makers, Takers, and Fakers.” Heinlein posited that there is no third category, and I concur.

     Makers produce goods and render services that maintain life, enable prosperity, and support a tolerable social order. Not all Makers produce tangible products. The humblest counter girl at a fast-food restaurant facilitates the provision of an objective good – food – to those who would purchase it. That gives her a claim on the title of Maker quite as valid as any farmhand or factory worker.

     Takers are persons unable or unwilling to produce or serve others. They’re sustained by the production of Makers; without Makers’ largesse, they would perish. Not all Takers are willfully so; there are millions of persons unable through no fault of their own to support themselves by productive effort. But the great majority of Takers are not of that blameless sort.

     Fakers are those who pose as Makers but who are quite as parasitical as the willful worst of the Takers. Politicians and their hangers-on are Fakers. As Sir Fred Hoyle wrote in The Black Cloud, we treat them as important because the newspapers say they are, whether explicitly or implicitly. Yet they’re as helpless to sustain their lives by productive effort as any Taker.

     The visible, vocal Leftist is a Faker. He’s overwhelmingly most common in the “communicative” fields: education, journalism, and entertainment. These fields are made possible by their opposites: those that produce the goods and services that actually sustain life. Universities, the least dubious of Faker institutions, may be necessary to a high society in some rarefied sense, but they are not sufficient. Without the legions of Makers that support them from “below,” they would perish...and most of their denizens are aware of it.

     In these United States, the Takers and Fakers have succeeded in fastening themselves onto the Makers through the exploitation of unearned guilt. They’ve multiplied and grown fat while the Makers have grown lean. Yet were the Makers to withdraw their support, they would perish in a body – and they know it.

     No schism that makes two nations where there was one would be worthwhile unless the Makers could leave the Takers and Fakers behind. But as I wrote in the previous segment such a separation would be opposed by all the force at the Fakers’ disposal. For them and their Taker constituents, it would be a matter of survival.

     Pleasant thoughts for a Tuesday morning in April, eh? But this is how it looks to me. If there is to be a separation, it will require us to pass through a revolution bloodier than any other in human history. Most of us are aware of that in some semiconscious way, which is why we continue to search for a non-violent solution.

     I desperately want to find such a solution. Others of my bent are equally passionate in their similar efforts. But our sincerity and yearning doesn’t guarantee that such a solution exists...and the longer we search, the less likely our success becomes, for time is running out.


Monday, April 27, 2015

I Was Once A Live And Let Live Guy...

     but I do believe those days are over:

     Coeur d‘Alene, Idaho, city officials have laid down the law to Christian pastors within their community, telling them bluntly via an ordinance that if they refuse to marry homosexuals, they will face jail time and fines.

     The dictate comes on the heels of a legal battle with Donald and Evelyn Knapp, ordained ministers who own the Hitching Post wedding chapel in the city, but who oppose gay marriage, The Daily Caller reported.

     A federal judge recently ruled that the state’s ban on gay marriage was unconstitutional, while the city of Coeur d‘Alene has an ordinance that prevents discrimination based on sexual preference.

     The Supreme Court’s recent refusal to take on gay rights’ appeals from five states has opened the doors for same-sex marriages to go forth.

     The Knapps were just asked by a gay couple to perform their wedding ceremony, The Daily Caller reported.

     “On Friday, a same-sex couple asked to be married by the Knapps, and the Knapps politely declined,” The Daily Signal reported. “The Knapps now face a 180-day jail term and a $1,000 fine for each day they decline to celebrate the same-sex wedding.”

     I’ve had it with the homosexual militants. They’re the most vicious of all the “professional victims.” They’ll hound anyone they see as an opponent right into a cardboard box. Ask Brendan Eich.

     I’m thinking seriously of starting a retail business just so I can put a large sign outside:

No Homosexuals Allowed

     ...and watch the heads explode.

     Think what you like, fudge packers. We straights tolerated you. We nullified the hoary old laws against your perversion. We even allowed your faggoty parades and your “ACT-UP” and “Queer Nation” demonstrations. We told ourselves no harm could come of it, that you only wanted to live in peaace. (“A place at the table,” Bruce Bawer called it.) We were wrong.

     Enough is enough. If you don’t like it here, go to Iran and claim your “rights” there. I’m sure you’ll get a warm reception.

Invasions, Assimilation, and Salt

For some reason, I have been gripped by the topic of “invasive species” for the last few days.    Down here in the south, the example of kudzu immediately comes to mind.  The UN Council on Bio Diversity defines an invasive species as, “a plant or animal that is not native to a specific location; and has a tendency to spread, which is believed to cause damage to the environment, human economy and/or human health.”  

The European Union uses the term "Invasive Alien Species."  One doesn’t need to be a recent graduate of our modern academic system to realize just how offensive and politically incorrect the term "Invasive Alien Species" could be.  In fact, two researchers, Robert I. Colautti and Hugh J. MacIsaac in a paper titled, “A Neutral Terminology to Define ‘Invasive’ Species” come to the aid of those oppressed aliens.  

Their paper’s abstract explains, “The use of simple terms to articulate ecological concepts can confuse ideological debates and undermine management efforts. This problem is particularly acute in studies of nonindigenous species, which alternatively have been called ‘exotic’, ‘introduced’, ‘invasive’ and ‘naturalised’, among others…”  Instead they, “propose a neutral terminology.”  Perhaps they should be called “undocumented species” or “uninvited, but welcome anyways species” or “refugee species.”  Some species were probably brought here by their parents, through no fault of their own – some might call that species a “dreamer” perhaps.

Dr. David Tilman finds, “Typically, an introduced species must survive at low population densities before it becomes invasive in a new location.”  Then there is a “tipping point” where the invasive species becomes a problem.  However, this doesn’t just happen; there are preconditions that make an ecosystem susceptible to invasion.  The Department of Agriculture insightfully explains, “Invaded ecosystems may have experienced disturbance, typically human-induced.  Such a disturbance may give invasive species a chance to establish themselves with less competition from natives less able to adapt to a disturbed ecosystem.”   In the case of the American ecosystem, that disturbance is the result of unconstitutional executive actions.


The Center for Immigration Studies analysis of the new Census says, “These numbers have important implications for workers, schools, infrastructure, congestion and the environment…They also may have implications for our ability to successfully assimilate and integrate immigrants. Yet there has been almost no national debate about bringing in so many people..."

If our country is going to be preserved, Americans must pour on the salt.  No matter how irritating some might find it.

A Quiet Riot

     (Say, wasn’t there a band named Quiet Riot?)

     From the national news media, you might not think matters in Baltimore were much different from their usual. From the national news media, you might infer that the death of Freddie Gray while in police custody is generally regarded as an explainable, if tragic occurrence – i.e., no big deal. From the national news media, you might assume that the political authorities and law enforcement agencies of Baltimore had the situation well in hand.

     You might. You’d be wrong.

     I expected there to be at least some unrest, and many strident calls for an independent inquiry, into why a young man who was healthy (apart from asthma) when the Baltimore police detained him should have died with his spine 80% severed. After all, he was black, and these days that’s considered cause enough to disrupt an American city.

     The reports I’ve read say that Freddie Gray was transported to detention in a police van, shackled but not seat-belted or otherwise secured. This appears to be the cause of the fatal spinal cord injury that took Gray’s life. But for the life of me, I can’t find the reason for which he was originally arrested. Apparently, the Baltimore police were out in force in a part of the city known for drug traffic, but I can’t find any information beyond that.

     No one in authority in Baltimore has yet said whether Gray was about to be charged with any crime. This might have been an arrest-on-suspicion. Suspicion of what is not definite, though the region’s reputation for drug activity seems most likely.

     One way or another, the police arrested a man for reasons they haven’t disclosed, and that man died in their hands. There’s a good chance that this was a fatal miscarriage of justice.

     But there’s no chance whatsoever that whatever happened can justify widespread violence and the destruction and looting of private property. Yet that’s what’s happening – and with the open connivance of the political authorities.

     Hearken to Sara Noble:

Former DC detective Rod Wheeler joined Fox & Friends this morning to explain what went on. Mr. Wheeler is a great guy but his promotion of the new policing techniques needs to be challenged.

The police deliberately allowed the protesters to do this, Mr. Wheeler observed. They stayed out of the picture. There were no military-type uniforms. There were no armored cars, he said.

Some officers didn’t wear helmets, he reported as if it was a positive step.

That seems to be putting the police in grave danger.

After they destroyed some cars and committed crimes, the police started moving in.

It’s similar to what went on in Ferguson when the mayor allowed 28 stores to burn down to keep the criminals calm.

Mr. Wheeler said the new tactics generated a different response from the crowd. It’s what they learned from Ferguson.

The crowd gets more aggressive if the police do, so now the police confine them to an area but when “they really start becoming destructive, we start moving in.”

“For the most part,” Wheeler said, “it wasn’t that bad.”

     I wonder if the persons injured in the riots and the proprietors of the stores that were looted and destroyed feel “it wasn’t that bad.”

     It’s beyond dispute that when a sufficient number of persons concurrently become inclined to violence and disorder, there will not be enough police to restrain them. Even an overtly totalitarian society can’t afford that much enforcement power. So under contemporary conditions, in which heavily propagandized American Negroes are easily provoked to mass violence, the police are effectively neutralized. An effective organized response would be on the order of a military invasion, which Americans are unwilling to tolerate.

     The only effective diffuse response would be for law-abiding citizens to go to their guns. But Baltimore is in Maryland, and Maryland is among the states most hostile to the private ownership of firearms. Atop that, should a store owner kill a rioter, upon whom do you think the authorities of the city would descend with the full weight of the “law?” To assist you in arriving at your answer, here’s a picture of the current Mayor of Baltimore:

     And here is what she said to the press about the tactics the police were instructed to adopt:

"I made it very clear that I work with the police and instructed them to do everything that they could to make sure that the protesters were able to exercise their right to free speech.

"It's a very delicate balancing act. Because while we try to make sure that they were protected from the cars and other things that were going on, we also gave those who wished to destroy space to do that as well. And we worked very hard to keep that balance and to put ourselves in the best position to de-escalate."

     That came from the mayor of a major American city – a city that, among other things, is the birthplace of Catholicism in the United States. It’s perfectly clear what she’d think of a private citizen who would dare to defend his property with force. A white store owner shot a black looter who was merely exercising his “right to free speech” by trashing the white man’s place of business? Unthinkable!

     But I don’t write merely to note a horrific development and express my disapproval. I’ve made it my mission to forecast what will come of it.

     I predict an outward migration of whites, especially white small-business owners, from the city of Baltimore. I predict that the cost of living in Baltimore will rise as insurers add “risk premiums” to their commercial coverage policies and the remaining businesses pass those cost increments down to their customers. I predict that as blacks in other cities “learn” from Baltimore’s example of laid-back riot “control,” the events there will be reproduced elsewhere, with similar demographic and economic consequences. I predict that racialist mouthpieces, starting with Al Sharpton, will blame the further deterioration in majority-black urban neighborhoods on “white greed.” And I predict that the national media, to the extent that they deign to cover those phenomena at all, will rationalize the violence as “to be expected” and deplore the flight of whites to safer, less racially mixed regions as “racist.”

     Who would like to bet against me?

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Day Off

     This will be a day of much yard work – everything has a downside, including the coming of the mild, sunny spring weather – so I shan’t have a brand-new essay for you today. Instead, perhaps you'll enjoy an “oldie but goodie” from the old Palace of Reason, which appears below.

Looking For Trouble

October 27, 2003

Interesting patterns and trends are everywhere around us. It baffles your Curmudgeon how an opinion writer could say that he has nothing to write about. As Robert Pirsig and others have said, "The more you look, the more you see."

A Curmudgeonly acquaintance, who shall henceforth be called Sarah, can be found in the local supermarket every evening between seven and eight o'clock. Yes, she's married. No, she doesn't have a huge family that requires an hour's grocery shopping every evening. She spends her time there because she enjoys it.

Sarah's not insane, nor is she unique. A substantial number of Americans shop for pleasure. If the supermarket seems an odd venue for this pastime, well, different strokes and all that.

But Sarah's not shopping in the conventional sense. She's looking for trouble.

No, no! She's not looking to start a fight over the price of eggs. She's looking for trouble so she can help to fix it. Since she's a gifted shopper, with a remarkable ability to squeeze $10 of purchases out of a $5 bill, she looks for people having shopping trouble: women who can't fill their larders adequately on their household budgets.

Sarah's really good at this, and the folks she helps purely love her. However, at our last conversation, Sarah observed that fewer and fewer people seem to need her assistance. She mused about whether she ought to spend her evenings in a less affluent area.

Another Curmudgeonly acquaintance, a retired gentleman whom we'll call Ray, has the charming habit of driving his truck around Long Island's major roads, looking for motorists with mechanical problems. When he finds one, he stops and offers to fix the misbehaving automobile right then and there, for free. Such is Ray's prowess with cars that he has yet to fail to deliver.

But Ray, too, is longing for richer trouble pickings. Long Islanders' cars don't break down nearly as often as they once did. Worse, most motorists have cell phones now, and they don't hesitate to use them. Ray's been talking about moving upstate, to Sullivan or Delaware County, where the average vehicle is older and more likely to fail.

This past decade, local churches have reported a strong upswing in volunteers for charity work. Charity kitchens often have more willing workers than they have clients to feed. Our hospitals are blessed with a goodly number of volunteers to keep company with the afflicted: reading to them, talking to them, or performing less savory chores that will not be described further here.

A lot of Americans are out there looking for trouble -- and finding that there's less of it to go around.

This is a happy thing. Right? Well, of course it is. Unless your sense of worth requires others in less pleasant circumstances for you to minister to. But the swelling of the ranks of volunteers has your Curmudgeon wondering.

That Americans are willing to give so greatly speaks wonderfully of them. It also begs a question that many would prefer not to face: "Why are you doing this?"

The question is not meant maliciously, but as a measure of another social dynamic whose arrival has been long foretold: the "hedonic treadmill."

Economics teaches that everything is subject to a law of diminishing marginal utility. At any instant, to any potential purchaser, unit 2 of some good is worth less to him than unit 1. Unit 3 is worth still less, and so on. If there's a reason this law shouldn't apply to the direct satisfactions of life, your Curmudgeon can't see it. If it does, then the direct satisfaction of entirely personal desires -- that is, those desires that bear on no one else's appetites and interests but one's own -- will gradually lose appeal as those desires are met to an increasing degree. Therefore, as Smith prospers and accumulates the things he wants, the things that directly bring him pleasure, the effort he must expend to pursue more of them will appear to become excessive. When his efforts seem greater than the pleasure afforded, they will cease; Smith will step off the treadmill.

Put another way: Just how many CDs and video games can you really enjoy?

Of course, this is an oversimplification. It assumes that novelty and variety play no part. It also discounts the changes in tastes that come with age. Even so, it has some force. Handsome, affluent young professionals don't go looking for charitable involvement because they can't afford ski trips or find bed partners. Nor do they all do it because of religious conviction.

We reach out to others, in part, because there comes a point where it's the only way to continue to grow.

The Boomer generation, which participates heavily in the eleemosynary trend, has been the most individualistic, even self-centered, generation in American history. We've almost worn out the word "I." Even so, we appear to have reached our epiphany, our recognition that there are fulfillments beyond those of the senses, and that they deserve a place in our lives.

It's a considerable irony that this should be happening at a time when true misery of all sorts is receding rapidly from our shores. Sarah's and Ray's clients are fewer and further between for the very same reason that Sarah and Ray can afford to help them: the entire nation is getting richer and economically more secure at an incomprehensible rate.

Of course, that's not something to be unhappy about. Indeed, charitably-inclined Westerners headed abroad in search of recipients for their largesse might be the shot in the arm our airlines need. The airlines themselves might be the biggest beneficiaries of such a movement. Imagine that.

Saturday, April 25, 2015


     Unless you are a true master of the culinary arts, do not attempt to make a grilled cheese sandwich on matzoh bread. I can tell you from experience that this is definitely a job for an expert!

     (No, you don’t have to be Jewish. But it might help.)

Assorted, Howard Beale Edition

     ...because you’ve got to get mad.

     First, one in the eye for the feminist viragoes: Did you know that while Emma Sulkowicz was parading around Columbia University carrying a mattress and accusing Paul Nungesser of having raped her, Nungesser was forbidden to say anything about the incident?

     Paul Nungesser was found “not responsible” for sexually assaulting another student at Columbia University. The student who accused him, Emma Sulkowicz, has since begun carrying a mattress around the university as part of an art project to protest a finding she claims was unfair.

     Sulkowicz’s activism earned her an invitation to President Obama’s State of the Union address Tuesday night from Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y. When Nungesser heard of the invitation, he blasted the senator for rewarding Sulkowicz’s attacks against him.

     “I am shocked to learn that Sen. Gillibrand is actively supporting Ms. Sulkowicz’s defamation campaign against me by providing her with a public forum in which to broadcast her grave allegation,” Nungesser told New York Magazine on Tuesday. “By doing so, Sen. Gillibrand is participating in a harassment campaign against someone, who, for good reason, has been found innocent by all investigating bodies.”

     Hearken to Ace of Spades:

     Sulkowicz was permitted by Columbia to carry around a mattress to further defame Nungesser, and even make her carrying around of that mattress her senior art project -- for college credit.

     Note that Nungesser has been cleared multiple times of the claims Emma Sulkowicz has made against him -- and the charges that Sulkowicz induced two other women to file against him, in a sort of warped solidarity.

     And Sulkowicz also tried to bring charges with the NYPD -- who also refused to prosecute.

     But throughout this, Sulkowicz has spoken to the media -- violating Columbia's confidentiality rules -- and made it easy to determine who she was accusing.

     However, Nungesser himself has not spoken to the media much, until recently.

     He was bound by confidentiality, whereas Sulkowicz paraded around that mattress, claiming he'd raped her.

     Truly, sometimes there are no words of sufficient power. Remember this story the next time some “angry ugly girl” preaches at you about the “rape culture.”

     Now for the homosexuals: Apparently “Gay Pride” is quite all right, but ”Straight Pride” is a step too far:

     Posters promoting a "straight pride" week at a northeast Ohio university were removed this week after student leaders determined that the message went beyond free speech.

     Youngstown State University student government leaders told WKBN-TV they decided to remove the posters after consulting with university officials.

     The posters were hung around campus earlier this week. They included profanity and promoted the event as a time to not highlight sexual orientation or differences among students. They encouraged students to "go about your day without telling everyone about how 'different' you are."

     Campus leaders said that while they believe the posters were meant as satire, the message was inappropriate.

     The posters contained a simple message:

     Join us in celebrating straight pride week at YSU by not annoying the shit out of everyone about your sexual orientation!

     It’s easy to join too! Just come to YSU, then go about your day without telling everyone about how “different” you are.

     “Anti-joiner” Fran could get behind that! But apparently the YSU student government considers the advocacy of decorous silence “discriminatory.”

     Ah, the Muslims, those lovable, open-minded guys:

     The University of Maryland joins the University of Michigan in the ranks of educational institutions with an “American Sniper” controversy.

     Muslim student protests prompted the University of Maryland at College Park to announce the cancellation of the movie about deceased Navy SEAL Chris Kyle.

     “American Sniper only perpetuates the spread of Islamophobia and is offensive to many Muslims around the world for good reason. This movie dehumanizes Muslim individuals, promotes the idea of senseless mass murder, and portrays negative and inaccurate stereotypes,” the university’s Muslim Students Association said in its petition, Fox News reported Thursday.

     The Oscar-winning movie was supposed to be shown on May 6 and 7, but the university’s Student Entertainment Events (SEE) postponed the event on Wednesday.

     “SEE is choosing to explore the proactive measures of working with others during the coming months to possibly create an event where students can engage in constructive and moderated dialogues about the controversial topics proposed in the film,” SEE said in a statement posted on the university’s website, Fox reported.

     Gee, do you suppose these Muslim students might have relatives who rejoiced at the fall of the World Trade Center?

    “Please!” the driver said as he was lifted into the air. “You cannot do this to me!”
    “Did I listen to any of the rest of them?” Mike asked as the driver was lowered over the side. “Do you listen to the pleas of your victims? To the men whose throats you cut? To the little girls that get raped for the sins of their brothers? Do you care for those you’re starving to death in the Sudan? Did you listen to the pleas of the pilots you dragged through the streets of Mogadishu? Did you jump for joy when the Towers fell? Did you, YOU CAMEL-SUCKING FUCK?”

     Oh yes, John Ringo!

     While we’re “in college,” let’s have a look at a “high-tech” way of propagandizing students about “rape culture:”

     All CSUN [California State University at Northridge] students registering for the 2015 Fall Semester are being forced to participate in an online, SIMS-style character game about sexual assault before being allowed to claim a seat for any course.

     The game, titled “Agent of Change” and designed by feminist activists, does not allow students to complete the game until they have given enough “correct” answers as per the designers’ stated philosophical influences, such as “norms challenging,” “feminist theory,” and “social norms theory.” According to the Agent of Change website, the program helps users “see the connections between these power-based violations, how these problems affect their lives, and what they can do to challenge the cultural norms that help sexual violence flourish.”

....Interestingly, Agent of Change also claims that “a team from the Department of Defense reviewing sexual assault prevention programs has evaluated Agent of Change and classified it as highly recommended.” Indeed, several Air Force bases have been utilizing Agent of Change.

     But don’t expect these “agents of change” to listen to a contrasting viewpoint:

     Left-leaning student activists at Oberlin College hung posters at the Christina Hoff Sommers event earlier this week that identified the students involved in bringing the individualist-feminist and AEI scholar to campus.

     Each poster gave the name of a specific student-member of the Oberlin College Republicans and Libertarians and accused that person of perpetuating rape culture.

     Images of the posters were sent to Reason via a source who asked not to be named for fear of retaliation. The last names of the students identified by the posters were blurred before Reason received them.

     Still want your kids to go to college...or enlist in the military?

     Of course, to those on the Left, Christians are Public Enemy Number One:

     If you are a Bible-believing Christian, there is no place for you in Barack Obama’s version of the U.S. military. Christian service members all over the nation are being disciplined for reading their Bibles, talking about their faith publicly and encouraging others to live a moral lifestyle. And just saying the name of “Jesus” at the wrong place or the wrong time while serving in the military is enough to spark a national controversy. We live at a time when political correctness in America is wildly out of control, and thanks to Obama the U.S. military has become one of the most politically correct institutions in our society. Things have gotten so bad that dozens of top officers that did not agree with Obama’s views have been forced out of the military in recent years. The U.S. military is being transformed into an overtly anti-Christian institution, and for those of us that are Christians that is a very chilling development.

     Tens of thousands of men took up arms and went to Europe and the Pacific to defend oppressed and besieged others because they felt it to be their Christian duty. Given the above, what are the odds that that would happen today?

     They don’t call Philly the City of Brotherly Love for nothing:

     A security video showing a mob of students brutally beating two high schoolers in a Philadelphia subway station on Tuesday is being investigated by the city’s transportation officers.

     “It’s an outrageous event. This is so dangerous, it’s not even funny,” Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority Police Chief Thomas J. Nestel III told

     “We have operating trains down there. There are passengers waiting for the train ... it’s horrendous.”

     The video, which was time-stamped around 3:15 p.m., shows about a dozen teenagers either participating in a one-minute assault on two male students, or cheering it on.

     One of the assailants falls onto the subway tracks, pulls himself out and reenters the thrashing. A girl in the crowd tries to film the fight on her phone.

     Several of the teen brutes repeatedly stomp a victim’s head as he’s lying on the ground.

     Go to the article. Watch the embedded video. Look at all those “brothers!” Ain’t love grand?

     To be a conservative politician is practically indictable. But apparently, in the eyes of at least one Wisconsin fire chief, to be a successful conservative governor is to forfeit your rights:

     Since he was elected to the governor, Governor Walker’s Facebook page has been ripe with threats of violence against the governor and his family, but rarely has it been from a fellow public official.

     Amherst Fire Chief Victor Voss became one of those rare exceptions when he posted on a thread that had a photo of Walker at a ground breaking ceremony for new business opening in Grand Chute.

     Instead of being happy for the residents of Grand Chute who need the jobs, Chief Voss decided to make an ass of himself.

     Do you think Chief Voss will endure any discipline for promoting violence against...a Republican?

     That’s it for today, Gentle Reader. I’m all madded out. I can’t do this sort of work for too long without exhausting myself. But I hope I’ve gotten you to rear up and bellow about something. It’s good for catharsis, if nothing else.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Nowhere To Hide

     I normally tune out reports of political scandals with a shrug and a muttered “That’s just what they do,” but I must admit I’m taking considerable pleasure out of the steadily intensifying hurricane at whose center stands She Who Must Be President, Mrs. Hillary Rodham Clinton.

     [Bonus points to whoever spots and reports the social faux pas in the previous paragraph.]

     According to a very recent survey, Mrs. Clinton is not generally deemed honest:

     Currently, 45 percent of voters think Clinton is honest. That’s mostly unchanged from last month, but down 9 points from 54 percent a year ago (April 2014). She lost ground among men (-10 points), women (-9 points) and Democrats (-7 points). Moreover, only 33 percent of independents see Clinton as honest. That’s down 13 points since last year.

     Overall, Clinton’s honesty score is negative six (45 percent “yes, she is” minus 51 percent “no, she isn’t”)

     But the perception of honesty is a complex thing. It partakes of several factors, of which one’s known deceits are only one. Perhaps more important than one’s record of deceit is one’s demonstrated attitude of superiority and entitlement:

     “I’m not going to have some reporters pawing through our papers. We are the president.” -- First Lady Hillary Clinton commenting on the release of subpoenaed documents in 1998

     “I have said that I’m not running and I’m having a great time being pres — being a first-term senator.” -- Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY), commenting on her presidential ambitions when speaking at the National Press Club, July 20, 2001

     “I remember landing under sniper fire. There was supposed to be some kind of a greeting ceremony at the airport, but instead we just ran with our heads down to get into the vehicles to get to our base." -- on visiting Bosnia in 1996, contradicting other accounts that said there was no threat of gunfire. Clinton later said she "misspoke:"

     “On a couple of occasions in the last weeks, I just said some things that weren‘t in keeping with what I knew to be the case and what I had written about in my book. And you know, I‘m embarrassed by it. I‘m very sorry I said it. I have said that, you know, it just didn‘t jive with what I had written about and knew to be the truth.” -- after Bill Clinton claimed Hillary apologized for lying about her trip to Bosnia

     “We just can’t trust the American people to make those types of choices … Government has to make those choices for people.” “Government” meaning “Hillary R. Clinton.”

     "We are going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good." – From a speech opposing George W. Bush’s tax cuts, 2004. Note the use of the royal “we.”

     "If I didn't kick his ass every day, he wouldn't be worth anything." -- on Bill Clinton

     But Mrs. Clinton has always known which side of her bread is buttered, and whenever he’s come under an unfavorable lens, she’s protected him with unrelenting ferocity:

     "Who is going to find out? These women are trash. Nobody's going to believe them." --on Bill Clinton's bimbo eruptions

     “From my perspective, this is part of the continuing political campaign against my husband… I mean, look at the very people who are involved in this. They have popped up in other settings. The great story here for anybody willing to find it, write about it and explain it is this vast right-wing conspiracy that has been conspiring against my husband since the day he announced for president.” -- Reacting to truthful reports that her husband, Bill Clinton, had had an affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky; Interview with Matt Lauer on NBC's Today show (27 January 1998)

     "My husband may have his faults, but he has never lied to me." – to political confidant Bob Barnett, shortly before Bill’s admission of his infidelities with Monica Lewinsky, 1998

     Would any of this be deemed acceptable from a Republican candidate for president – say, from Carly Fiorina?

     But we’ve hardly scratched the surface.

     The recent book Clinton Cash has catapulted the Clinton machine into defensive mode. Their spokespeople are laagering up around the candidate with the usual dismissals and deflections:

  • “That’s old news.”
  • “This is normal for an election cycle.”
  • “It’s just the Republican attack machine.”

     ...and so forth. However, those tactics only work if the Main Stream Media are willing to collaborate...and this time around, that’s dubious:

     The headline on the website Pravda trumpeted President Vladimir V. Putin’s latest coup, its nationalistic fervor recalling an era when its precursor served as the official mouthpiece of the Kremlin: “Russian Nuclear Energy Conquers the World.”

     The article, in January 2013, detailed how the Russian atomic energy agency, Rosatom, had taken over a Canadian company with uranium-mining stakes stretching from Central Asia to the American West. The deal made Rosatom one of the world’s largest uranium producers and brought Mr. Putin closer to his goal of controlling much of the global uranium supply chain.

     But the untold story behind that story is one that involves not just the Russian president, but also a former American president and a woman who would like to be the next one.

     At the heart of the tale are several men, leaders of the Canadian mining industry, who have been major donors to the charitable endeavors of former President Bill Clinton and his family. Members of that group built, financed and eventually sold off to the Russians a company that would become known as Uranium One....

     As the Russians gradually assumed control of Uranium One in three separate transactions from 2009 to 2013, Canadian records show, a flow of cash made its way to the Clinton Foundation. Uranium One’s chairman used his family foundation to make four donations totaling $2.35 million. Those contributions were not publicly disclosed by the Clintons, despite an agreement Mrs. Clinton had struck with the Obama White House to publicly identify all donors. Other people with ties to the company made donations as well.

     And shortly after the Russians announced their intention to acquire a majority stake in Uranium One, Mr. Clinton received $500,000 for a Moscow speech from a Russian investment bank with links to the Kremlin that was promoting Uranium One stock....

     Whether the donations played any role in the approval of the uranium deal is unknown. But the episode underscores the special ethical challenges presented by the Clinton Foundation, headed by a former president who relied heavily on foreign cash to accumulate $250 million in assets even as his wife helped steer American foreign policy as secretary of state, presiding over decisions with the potential to benefit the foundation’s donors.

     In a statement, Brian Fallon, a spokesman for Mrs. Clinton’s presidential campaign, said no one “has ever produced a shred of evidence supporting the theory that Hillary Clinton ever took action as secretary of state to support the interests of donors to the Clinton Foundation.” He emphasized that multiple United States agencies, as well as the Canadian government, had signed off on the deal and that, in general, such matters were handled at a level below the secretary. “To suggest the State Department, under then-Secretary Clinton, exerted undue influence in the U.S. government’s review of the sale of Uranium One is utterly baseless,” he added.

     That report was written by Times reporter Jo Becker. Here are Clinton Cash author Schweitzer and reporter Becker in person:

     When the Gray Lady refuses its protection to a Democrat – especially a Democrat deemed the front-runner for her party’s presidential nomination – that Democrat has nowhere to hide.

     In part, the intensity of this scandal can be attributed to the fault lines within the Democratic Party. The Obamas and the Clintons are separated by a considerable gulf. Yes, both are filled with the sense of superiority and entitlement. However, as rivals for the control of the party, they have been at odds since Obama first appeared on the national stage. More, the Obamas are far more committed to the social-fascist ideology than are the Clintons, who will say and do anything that maintains and increases their power and pelf. Note how scrupulously the Obama apparatus has maintained its distance from the mounting storm of criticism.

     Many in the Right have commented that the Uranium One scandal could sink the Clinton candidacy. Perhaps it could...but we have more than a year of campaigning for the nomination to endure, and 18 months before the final ballots are cast. The “old news / Republican attack machine” ploy might yet work for the Clintons.

     Our obligation is to keep all the reports of Clintonian untruths and misdeeds alive and growing – not because whoever the Republicans nominate is guaranteed to do much to restore Constitutional governance, but because when a political kingpin is brought down in a maximally tawdry display, he invariably pulls a great part of the political elite with him. Remember Warren Harding and Albert Fall.

     In politics, the fall, just like the rot, starts at the top.