Friday, May 10, 2019

Behind the hate

Donald Trump’s biggest crime was winning the 2016 election. For our political and media elite in the Beltway, that was the catastrophic, unforgivable crime, from which all the other (imaginary) crimes they now pursue him for originated.

How dare he win that election? Didn’t he know the election belonged to Hillary Clinton, who’d been building up to this very moment for three decades, courting every relevant constituency, remembering every useful politician’s birthday, and being as banal as possible to check everyone’s “lesser political evil” box?

How dare he win the election on his very first try?  If you scratch the surface, jealousy is one of the driving emotions among Washington’s elite against Trump and his electoral success. He achieved what many career politicians would die and sell their souls multiple times for. And Trump did it seemingly casually, almost effortlessly. How dare he? He must have stolen the election!

How dare he win that election with a shoestring budget and a ramshackle campaign apparatus? How dare he win without an army of consultants, strategists, advisers, pollsters, and fancy data interpreters? Didn’t he understand that our elections are an excellent jobs program for thousands of political operatives and media types?

How dare he win the old-fashioned way: you know, by having a simple, direct message; recognizing heartland voters’ economic woes; and campaigning in that retail-politics way of his? Didn’t he know that 21st-century elections are now won with Big Data, microtargeting of voters, and media-hyped candidates?

How dare he lie and exaggerate in that crude, undisciplined way of his? Doesn’t he know that Washington likes their liars to be polished prevaricators who know how to couch their fabrications in think-tankese?

To add insult to injury, how dare he win by just saying what he (and millions of ordinary voters) thinks? That’s just not done. Didn’t he appreciate that Presidential Campaign-Speak is an art unto itself—something that has been focus-grouped, poll-tested, script-driven, platitude-filled, that’ll give no offense whatsoever to any identity group in America, and bores listeners to tears. How dare Trump riff offhand and entertain voters? The gall of the man!

How dare he say obvious, common-sense things like spending blood and treasure on Middle Eastern quagmires isn’t okay anymore, that America can’t afford to be the world’s security underwriter anymore, that our global trade deals have shafted American workers for too long? Who does he think he is?

Doesn’t he know that on the issues of the day, he needs to consult our over-credentialed, corrupt, and inefficient elites before he says anything?  And doesn’t he know that the solution to every issue in our politics is counter-intuitive now: Up is down, war is peace, more illegal immigration is good, and having a wall on our southern border is bad.

How dare he care about ordinary American workers in the Rust Belt? Doesn’t he know that we live in a global economy now, and those Americans are toast? Dang Trump for forcing us to pretend we care about those white working-class voters Democrats had snookered for so long. Thanks to Orange Man, we now have to cater to the very people we despise and who cling bitterly to their God, guns, and religion.

And for God’s sake, doesn’t he know that caring about one’s nation and its citizens is passé? It’s all global now! Pretend-caring in a vague, generalized, feel-good way about global citizens while getting richer off their cheap labor is the fashion now.

For all his flaws, Trump is the best thing to have happened to our ossified, corrupt national politics. He ripped the mask off our political and media establishments. His election victory exposed the empty-souled hypocrites in the establishments of both parties and the national media who shill for them. He is the much-needed human defibrillator to the American political system.

What our ruling elites used to have (and lost) after the 2016 election was a powerful sense of control over our politics. Like millions of voters who are outside the hardcore Democratic base, I’ve been enjoying the primal scream emanating from the ruling and media elite. I may not like or agree with everything Trump does, but the spectacle of jittery, grasping-at-anything-and-everything elites has been enjoyable to watch.

With his unpredictable, heterodox ways of policy-making and communicating to the masses, Trump has, in some ways, neutered the media elite. What we have been seeing for the last two-and-a-half years is nothing but revenge on steroids: For the crime of winning the 2016 election, the elites have pinned all manner of crimes on Trump, hoping something will stick.


Barely sane attack on pro-life monitors

I seem to see a troubled mind behind those eyes

The mother of two teenage girls who were harassed by Democratic Pennsylvania State Rep. Brian Sims for protesting outside a Philadelphia Planned Parenthood a few weeks ago told Fox News' Tucker Carlson Tuesday night that it was a "shocking experience," but they had prayed for him following the incident.

Ashley Garecht had taken her 13- and 15-year-old daughters and their 15-year-old friend to Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, which is in Sims' district, on Holy Thursday of the Easter Triduum to peacefully pray before they went to Mass.

During the disturbing encounter — which Sims live-streamed on Periscope — the unhinged Democrat offered $100 to anyone who could identify the young girls.

Garecht said the altercation that was caught on video was not the first interaction they'd had with Sims.

"He approached us about 20 minutes before that," she explained. "He came in yelling at us and really was yelling very directly at the girls — very specifically at the girls. So I moved myself in between him and said 'please talk to me, let's have a conversation, the two of us as two adults,' but he continued to yell at the girls and then eventually he left and about ten minutes later is when he came back videotaping us," she continued.

"So, after our first altercation with him, you know, I went and talked to my girls and told them, you know, 'I’m really sorry this happened. I’m really proud of you guys for being here,'" Garecht said. "This is something we wanted to do as a prayerful act of the service as we prepared for the Easter Triduum, which was going to begin that night with Holy Thursday Mass. And I told them, you know, sometimes it’s hard to do the right thing, but I was really proud of them."

She continued, "Sadly, ironically, the two older girls looked at me and said, 'Mom, that was nothing compared to what people were screaming at us at the March for Life in January.' They went to the March for Life with their high school. So, I guess I was grateful that they had had some experience before. They were prepared for it and because they were able to kind of stay calm, that helped my younger daughter stay calm."

Garecht added, "and, you know, we prayed for him then. I said we'd continue to pray for him and just try to do the right thing. And then he came back, again videotaping us."

She said the shocking experience had her "adrenaline running."

As Sims approached the group, he called them "pseudo-Christian protesters who are out here shaming young girls." And then he offered to pay his followers to doxx them. "I’ve got $100 dollars for anyone who can identify any of these three," he added as his phone camera panned the youngsters.

"I was concerned for my girls," Garecht told Carlson. "I was genuinely trying to enter into just a dialogue with him to try to bring the situation —  calm it down a little bit. And to say to him on film that we were just there just praying for these women and babies. We weren't looking for an altercation — I never come to clinics looking for a fight. It's always just with peaceful, prayerful intent," she explained.

Garecht told Carlson that Sims' threat to doxx her girls was concerning.

"I was concerned that he said multiple times that he wanted the identities of my daughters. We were at that point already done, we had finished our prayers and were leaving and so when I realized he wasn't going to enter into any kind of productive dialogue, I thought, we'll just continue our exit, we'll just leave," Garecht said.

Carlson asked her what she thought the Democrat's attack on their white skin color was all about.

Garecht said she had no idea what he was talking about.

"My daughters and I are Caucasian but we were there to pray for all women. We certainly don't look at the color of their skin as they come or go. My daughter's friend is non-Caucasian, and that is very evident," she noted, adding that the girl had "told him several times over the course of our interactions, 'I'm not white, sir.'"

"We kinda got a laugh out of that because what he was saying literally just didn't make sense," Garecht said.

Sims also videotaped himself harassing an older woman who was praying the Rosary outside of the same Planned Parenthood last week.

After both videos became viral sensations, Sims went into damage control mode.

Sims posted a video onto Twitter Tuesday that sought to justify his hateful outbursts by further demonizing the pro-lifers. Sims explained that he has lived near the Planned Parenthood clinic for 15 years, and had seen lots of people going into the facility for "check-ups, for pap smears, for breast exams, for STD screenings, and yes–for abortions."

He added: "In fact, it’s where I even treat for my life-saving PrEP medication and I’m grateful for the service they provide." [PrRP is a pre-exposure prophylaxis used by people who do not have HIV but who are at substantial risk of getting it].

Sims said that as a volunteer escort at the facility he’d seen "the insults, the slurs, the attacks, and the racism that those protesters aim at mostly young girls who go there for clinical care." However, the only insults, slurs, and attacks seen in the videos he took himself and posted online came from himself. He also accused the pro-lifers of "praying at" — not "for" — the people going in and out of the abortion clinic.

Sims added:

As a Planned Parenthood volunteer and supporter, I fully understand, respect, and appreciate the non-engagement policy that they have. I would not want to do anything that would interfere with the care that they’re providing to their patients. As an activist and an advocate, I know why pushing back against harassment and discrimination are a must even when they’re uncomfortable, but last week, I wasn’t a patient escort. I was a neighbor and a concerned citizen and I was aggressive. I know that two wrongs don’t make a right and I can do better and I will do better for the women of Pennsylvania.

 I will fiercely protect a woman’s right to make the best choices for her health & her body, unimpeded. I also know that two wrongs don’t make a right, especially on the front lines of a civil rights battle. I can do better, and I will do better, for the women of Pennsylvania.


The victim of crime in Britain CAN sometimes win

A pensioner who fatally stabbed a burglar who was trying to rob his home has talked for the first time publicly about the incident at an inquest.

Henry Vincent entered the property of 79-year-old Richard Osborn-Brooks with an accomplice in the early hours of April 4 last year, before a struggle ensued and Vincent died after being stabbed.

In a statement given to police, Mr Osborn-Brooks said two men knocked on his door and after he opened it he was pushed inside, the inquest heard. On Thursday afternoon, coroner Andrew Harris has ruled Vincent was lawfully killed.

In an audio recording played to the hearing, Mr Osborn-Brooks can be heard saying to police officers: "I grabbed that knife out of the knife block and I threatened him with it... he yelled up to his mate 'he's got a knife'.

"His mate had a sharp thing in his hand, afterwards I realised it was a screwdriver... I said 'mine's bigger than yours'.

"He said 'come near me and I'll stab you'.

"He came toward me with the screwdriver... I just put the knife forward." Mr Osborn-Brooks can be heard saying: "It went in about four inches."

Talking via videolink from behind a screen, the pensioner said after he grabbed the largest kitchen knife from a six-knife holder, Vincent's accomplice fled out the front door.

The pensioner said Vincent then came down the stairs and brandished a screwdriver and said "get out of my way or I'll stick you with this".

The coroner, reading Mr Osborn-Brooks's police statement to him, said: "You said 'I think you're wrong because mine's bigger than yours and if you don't leave my house you will be sorry'."

Mr Osborn-Brooks said: "I was just showing him that the knife I had was actually bigger than the screwdriver. So if he was to lunge at me he would hit my knife rather than hit me first.

"I thought he would look at my knife and see it is bigger than his implement and he would take the opportunity to run out the front door which was open.

"My intention was to get him out of the house and away from my wife.

"I still think that Mr Vincent rushes forward intending to do me harm and he ran into the knife that I was holding between us.

"He definitely didn't try to get out of the front door, he came towards me."

Vincent's mother Rose Lee and sister Rosie Vincent were present as the hearing began at Southwark Coroner's Court on Thursday morning.

It is being led by senior coroner Andrew Harris.

Rosie Vincent told the hearing: "My brother was not a violent person. He was a father, he was a son, he was a brother. "No one deserves to die."

Asked what she wanted to come out of the proceedings, she replied: "Will we ever truly understand?"

Pathologist Simon Poole, who carried out the post mortem on Vincent, said in a statement the toxicology report indicated "a recent use of both cocaine and heroin".

He added Vincent "may have been experiencing the effects" of the drugs at the time of the raid.

The cause of death was given as an incised wound to the chest.


Australia: Like the Greens, Labor reserves a special rancour for media outlets that hold them to account

When it comes to Labor and the Greens, there is no doubting the sincerity of their climate policies. Both parties will make full use of public resources to reducing the temperature, as they have done before. No, I am not talking about the climate in the literal sense. Rather, I mean the “chilling effect”, that being legislation designed to make you self-censor.

This week Herald-Sun columnist and Sky News presenter Andrew Bolt revealed video footage of Greens leader Richard Di Natale telling his supporters last March of his plans to silence conservative journalists.

“We’re going to call out the hate speech that’s been going on,” he said. “We’re going to make sure that we’ve got laws that regulate our media so that people like Andrew Bolt and Alan Jones and Chris Kenny – and I could go on and on and on. If they want to use hate speech to divide the community then they’re going to be held to account.”

On and on and on? Di Natale’s list of journalists he intends to prosecute must be a long one. “We need to have new laws that make it a crime to engage in hate speech,” he said. “At the moment when you look at the regulators for the media ... they don’t have the power they need to hold these really powerful voices to account.”

There it is, that nebulous expression “hate speech”. It is a cliched, all-encompassing, and infantile pejorative often used by those who are either unwilling or unable to refute a dissenting opinion. The beauty of that phrase, at least for those who parrot it, is that it cannot be held to an objective definition.

Anecdotally, however, one might conclude the truthfulness of the offending remarks and the intensity of hate speech denunciations have a close correlation.

Strangely, Di Natale does not seem to regard certain racial insults as an example of hate speech. For example, he continues to support the Greens candidate for the Northern Territory seat of Lingiari, George Hanna, who shared a despicable Facebook meme that described indigenous woman and Liberal candidate for the same seat, Jacinta Price, as a “coconut”.

“As far as I am concerned, both these men (Di Natale and Hanna) resemble the epitome of racism and sexism,” said Price yesterday.

Interestingly, in 2011 during his maiden speech, Di Natale championed the Greens as “a party that represents the best traditions of liberalism, expressed through its support for individuals to make decisions without interference from government”. Now he uses his position as a senator to intimidate journalists and implies they will answer to the state for pointing out truths he finds unpalatable.

Presumably he would claim it would be hate speech for me to say this is proof of his hypocrisy and demagoguery and that the Greens leader is full of — well, let’s just say hate.

Last week shadow Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus announced a Shorten Labor government would, if elected, “beef-up” the Australian Human Rights Commission in order to defend section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act, which makes it unlawful to offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate someone on basis of race.

 He stated that hate speech would become worse if there was a “continuation of right-wing government in Australia,” claiming the Coalition had made “very serious attempts to allow more hate speech in our community in the form of their attacks on section 18C”.

Never mind that 18C is a deeply flawed section that relies largely on a subjective test to determine wrongdoing. The Coalition had unsuccessfully tried to legislate instead this test be determined by the standards of an ordinary reasonable member of the Australian community, not by the arbitrary pronouncement of a minority group. To suggest this, as Dreyfus did, amounts to licensing hate speech is disingenuous.

Exactly how Dreyfus proposes the AHRC utilise its increased funding to enforce 18C we do not know. Perhaps that august body will commission more of those risible videos, worthy of a Razzie award, featuring evil white men gleefully preventing people of colour from entering lifts or catching taxis. Or it could employ activist organisations like GetUp! and Sleeping Giants to monitor social media and report wrongdoers. Even better, let’s have an anti-racism campaign focusing on educating school children. We could call it the “Sadly you can say what you like around the kitchen table at home” campaign in honour of former AHRC president Gillian Triggs.

Lest you think that is far-fetched, remember Dreyfus’s response in 2017 when asked whether 18C should be expanded to cover gender and disability. “One of the things we’ll be looking at is this very point of whether or not we should set a standard about speech generally,” he stated. In 2017, Labor backbencher Anne Aly called for 18C to cover religious vilification, stating discrimination against Muslims was a “new form of racism”.

In fairness to Dreyfus, however, he is acting in accordance with a Labor tradition of curtailing free speech. In 2012 then Attorney-General Nicola Roxon introduced the draft Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Bill under the banner of consolidating the five federal anti-discrimination statutes into one act. Had this dog’s breakfast of a bill been enacted, it would have rendered it unlawful to subjectively offend someone on the grounds of their family responsibilities, industrial history, medical history, nationality or citizenship, political opinion, religion, or social origin in a work environment.

As one lawyer pointed out, these provisions were so ridiculously expansionist it would even outlaw sledging on the football field. Worse still, this legislation would have shifted the burden of proof onto respondents of complaints. It was withdrawn only after an intense campaign led by the Institute of Public Affairs and News Corp newspapers. Conversely, ABC and then Fairfax journalists were, for the most part, indifferent. As The Australian columnist Janet Albrechtsen observed, the ABC became interested in the free speech ramifications only when Triggs, then AHRC president, voiced concerns the draft laws had “gone too far”.

Labor’s obsession with suppressing free speech in the name of tolerance goes back a generation. In 1994 the Keating government proposed legislation that would have criminalised threatening to cause harm to another person or group based on their race, colour, nationality or ethnic origin, the maximum penalty being two years imprisonment.

The basis for this draconian measure was a report by the then Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission, The National Inquiry into Racist Violence in Australia, which recommended both criminal sanctions and civil provisions for racial vilification. But its findings were based on flimsy, partisan and unreliable evidence, as then Canberra Times journalist and now Nine’s political correspondent, Chris Uhlmann, noted. His observations are worth repeating.

“The report is a shoddy base of research which does not attempt to disguise its own prejudices,” he wrote. “Racist violence was reduced to violence by ‘Anglos’ and inter-ethnic violence was not discussed.” While acknowledging some of the claims of racism detailed in the report had no doubt occurred, Uhlmann noted the evidence collected, “was not tested in a way that would stand up in court”.

Although the Keating government had consulted with the public about the proposed changes, Attorney-General Michael Lavarch announced the results had “been put to Cabinet” and “would not be released publicly”. As Uhlmann surmised, the reason for this was it was unlikely the results supported the government’s proposed action. When the criminal provisions of the bill failed to pass the Senate, Lavarch was apoplectic, saying this had sent worst possible message domestically and internationally during the Year of Tolerance. You might say these measures are as much about symbolism as they are about censorship.

Like the Greens, Labor reserves a special rancour for newspapers that hold its politicians to account, as demonstrated by its decision in 2011 on spurious grounds to commission the Finkelstein Inquiry into the Australian media. Had those recommendations been realised, it would have resulted in newspapers answering to a government-funded and euphemistically titled “Public Interest Media Advocate”.

The party’s paranoia during this time was also evident when The Daily Telegraph reported in November 2011 then Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd was being urged by backers to challenge then Prime Minister Julia Gillard for the leadership. Senator and left faction leader Doug Cameron labelled then News Ltd a “threat to democracy”, claiming the Finkelstein Inquiry should be expanded to examine the company’s “absolute hatred” of Labor. The story about Rudd, he claimed, was a “complete fabrication”. Rudd of course did challenge Gillard less than four months later. Cameron has passed the paranoia baton on to Rudd, who last year called for a royal commission into News Corp, blaming it for the downfall of his government in 2013.

Whether the subject is the “hate media” or “hate speech”, you can be certain those who obsessively denounce it are motivated by a combination of egotism, vindictiveness, zealotry and just plain stupidity. We need less regulation of speech, not more. We need political leaders to respect a free press, not compromise it. We need level-headed and practical people in human rights commissions to deal with complaints, not sententious, authoritarian and overpaid panjandrums. Most importantly, we need politicians to acknowledge the insidious chilling effect of so-called hate speech legislation, and to call these laws out for what they are — one almighty snow job.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here


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