Monday, August 31, 2020

President Trump in New Hampshire: I Might Invoke the Insurrection Act to Put Down These Leftist Thugs

President Trump formally accepted the Republican nomination last night and is back on the trail. He ventured to New Hampshire, a state where he came very close to taking from Hillary Clinton in 2016. At a rally in Manchester, the president ripped into the Democratic mayors who are allowing their cities to burn and leftist violence to continue unopposed. He torched D.C Mayor Muriel Bowser for allowing these hooligans to accost those attending his convention address. One of them, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), felt that he would have been killed if it weren’t for police protection. Paul was assaulted by a crazed neighbor three years ago.

For weeks, these leftist thugs have set fires to New York, Portland, Seattle, and Chicago. Other cities have experienced this mayhem as well. As we speak, Kenosha, Wisconsin is a total war zone, where looting, arson, and gunfire has erupted in the streets. This riot was started over the shooting of Jacob Blake. The rest of the nation was set ablaze over the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis last May. Yet, this is no longer about police reform or racial justice. This is about Marxism.

Trump said that if this chaos continues, he might consider invoking the Insurrection Act to put down the mobs. You can hear the meltdown brewing among liberal reporters and Democratic politicians (via The Hill) [emphasis mine]:

President Trump on Friday described protesters who surrounded the White House during the final night of the Republican National Convention as “thugs,” and suggested he was looking at invoking the Insurrection Act to send troops to quell protests in U.S. cities.

Trump, speaking at an outdoor campaign rally in Manchester, N.H., took a victory lap following his keynote address to the GOP convention from the White House on Thursday, before rebuking Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) for what he described as a failure to gain control of protests in the city.


Trump specifically mentioned Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who was surrounded by protesters Thursday night when departing the White House following Trump’s address and needed to be escorted by police.

 “These incredible people from all over the country, all over the world last night, they walked out to a bunch of thugs. And that wasn’t — remember this — that wasn’t friendly protesters, they were thugs. They were thugs,” Trump continued.


“The mayor should be ashamed of herself for that kind of a display of incompetence, because that’s what’s happening inn Portland, that’s what happens all over where you have Democrat-run cities,” Trump said.

The president went on to suggest that he again was considering invoking the Insurrection Act, which would enable him to send active-duty troops to cities to quell protests and unrest.

“We’re not supposed to be involved unless we’re invited in — by the people that run — these are all Democrat-run cities, including D.C.,” Trump said. “We’re not supposed to go in unless you call it an insurrection."

“We’re going to have to look at it,” he continued. “Because we’re not going to let that happen to people who go to the White House to celebrate our country.”

Look, the Left Coast has seen some 90-straight days of this leftist nonsense. In Chicago, the looting began again after a murder suspect shot himself as police approached him. The Chicago Police had to release the graphic video to dispel rumors about the incident. The police didn’t shoot this man, but the mayhem restarted. And the people who are supposed to quell this nonsense, Democratic mayors, are doing next to nothing. It may be time to send in the military. Put the mob down. Period.


What’s at Stake as Judge Pauses Law on Transgender Sports

A federal judge has temporarily blocked an Idaho law that essentially says biological males and females must compete separately in school-sponsored athletics. His action boosts an alarming new trend in sports that puts biological women at a disadvantage in high school and college sports.

Judge David Nye on Aug. 17 granted a motion for a preliminary injunction to halt the Fairness in Women’s Sports Act—which Gov. Brad Little, a Republican, signed in March—from taking effect.

This means that for now, Idaho may not ban biological males who identify as transgender from playing on girls or women’s sports teams with biological females.

While this is only a preliminary ruling in a lawsuit that’s far from over, it’s frustrating to see a law that Idaho legislators and constituents overwhelmingly supported placed on hold. It is also important to note that transgender women competing with biological women is hardly consistent with Title IX, the federal civil rights law that forbids discrimination based on sex in education programs.

Title IX also has helped ensure equality in the funding of women’s sports in schools and colleges.

As the transgender phenomenon has continued to grow, transgender athletes—in particular biological males who “identify” as females—have begun to compete in high school and collegiate sports, often easily besting females who previously dominated their peers in competition.

That’s why Idaho’s law was so important. The law—which passed without fanfare—simply underscored Title IX and specifically addressed the infiltration of transgender females in sports.

The law became controversial when a transgender female, with the help of the American Civil Liberties Union, sued the state. The transgender athlete argues that athletes who simply identify as female should be able to compete against biological females, and any law that prevents this is discriminatory.

Thankfully, the same day that Nye paused enforcement of Idaho’s law, he also allowed two female athletes to intervene in defense of the law.

The two collegiate athletes, Madison Kenyon and Mary Kate Marshall, run track and cross-country at Idaho State University in Pocatello. They’ve been training for years and were successful among their peers. Key word: were.

In a phone interview, Christiana Holcomb, a lawyer at Alliance Defending Freedom who represents Kenyon and Marshall, said the women have faced this new kind of discrimination and unfairness firsthand.

“Our two clients have both competed and lost against male athletes,” Holcomb said.

As far as the judge’s decision to pause enforcement of the law, Holcomb remains cautiously optimistic about their case.

“We are certainly disappointed to see the judge post an injunction because it will affect women’s sports,” she said. “We think it’s bad news. But this is a very preliminary ruling. A very preliminary ruling at the beginning of the case. We are prepared to make the case as to why Idaho’s law is a good law and is consistent under Title IX.”

Idaho’s law is not only consistent with Title IX, but passed easily in the Legislature, meaning it is likely supported by the majority of the state’s voters. This is not some kind of rogue executive order issued by the governor’s fiat.

Originally a nominee of President Barack Obama in 2016, Nye was renominated by President Donald Trump, confirmed by the Senate, and took the bench in July 2017.

Although Nye obviously thought it best to pause the law while the lawsuit proceeds, it doesn’t help female athletes in the meantime who simply want—and deserve—a fair competition, particularly in an arena where national recognition, college scholarships, and other placements are at stake.

What the ACLU and transgender athletes fail to realize (or perhaps they do, but refuse to publicly acknowledge) is that not only do biological differences exist between males and females, but these differences end up costing the females when they are forced to compete with transgender athletes.

Although they’re accomplished athletes in their own right, Kenyon and Marshall both have lost track and cross-country events to transgender females. No matter how hard they train, how many hours they run, or what coaches they have, their bodies are no match for a biological male running against them.

Fairness in women’s sports shouldn’t require a law because it seems so obvious. It shouldn’t even be a conservative talking point because it’s bipartisan. Yet, it seems to be mostly conservatives who are taking up the challenge of supporting this commonsense law.

All fair-minded Americans should hope to see Idaho’s Fairness in Women’s Sports Act upheld in court so that amazing athletes such as Kenyon and Marshall may be allowed to compete on a level playing field.


The New Far Left Fascism

President Trump accurately labeled the rise of Antifa as “a new far left fascism” during his July speech at Mt. Rushmore. Antifa has arisen at an appropriate time, when the far left in America is taking on the characteristics of fascism. No doubt they named themselves Antifa in order to dissuade people from thinking they were actual fascists. Give yourself a name that everyone agrees with, and you can hide your real agenda. Black Lives Matter has done it successfully, they have an approval rating over 70 percent but their real agenda is Marxism. As Catholic teacher Timothy Gordon put it after being fired for calling the group terrorists, you could be a terrorist group and hide your agenda by naming yourselves “Don’t Kill Kittens.”

The similarities between Antifa, the far left and fascism are disturbing. The left claims that fascism is closer linked to the right, but the right has never stood for massive government control -- that is a hallmark of the left.

One troubling similarity is the identification of enemies/scapegoats as a unifying cause. The far left now labels all conservatives as evil, calling them white supremacists, sexists, homophobes, climate change deniers, etc. Fascists disdain intellectuals. Under fascism, professors and other academics were censored and even arrested. Today, the far left is driving conservatives out of the universities. If they sneak in, the left complains until they are fired. Only 1 percent of the faculty at Harvard now identifies as conservative. Only academics who think like leftists are allowed to remain.

Fascism has a disdain for human rights, which manifests itself by cruel behavior toward political opponents. We’re seeing this in long prison sentences for conservative activists. Former Congressman Steve Stockman is serving a 10-year prison term for merely raising money for two conservative nonprofits. Even though he is over 60 and has diabetes, putting him at high risk for COVID-19, corrupt bureaucrats within the Bureau of Prisons will not release him. They released every other diabetic over 60 in his prison. Now he has COVID-19, so his sentence could turn into a death sentence.

Under fascism, fear is used as a motivational tool by the government over the people. We’re seeing this with the Democrats’ handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. They have made people ultraparanoid of contracting the virus, even though the young and healthy will be fine and even though a certain amount of the population needs to contract it in order to reach herd immunity. By fomenting this anxiety, they’re able to portray conservatives who oppose the draconian measures as not caring about people dying, using it against them to stop them from winning elections.

Corporate power is protected under fascism. The industrial and business aristocracy often puts the government leaders into power. We’re now seeing this with the most powerful companies in the country donating almost exclusively to Democrats. More than 90 percent of the $40 million donated by big tech employees to political causes since 2004 has gone to Democrats. In 2020 so far, 96 percent of the money contributed to political campaigns by Apple and its employees has gone to Democrats.

Fascists used slogans, symbols, songs and flags to promote their ideology. Antifa has a very distinct symbol of a black and red flag which shows up everywhere at their protests and riots. Black flags generally mean anarchy and red flags mean communism or socialism. Antifa is known for a variety of chants and slogans. They include “No America at all,” “No Trump, no wall, no USA at all,” and “If we don’t get it, shut it down!”

There is rampant cronyism and corruption under fascism. We’ve seen this in the revolving door between the mainstream media and Democratic administrations. There are too many to list here, but some of the more well-known individuals include George Stephanopoulos and Rahm Emanuel. Mark Levine cites 29 recent examples in his latest book, “Unfreedom of the Press,” which is far more than cycled through the GOP-media revolving door. There are also increasing malicious, politically motivated prosecutions against conservatives taking place in locations where far left Democrats control the prosecutors’ offices.

Another sign of fascism is fraudulent elections. The left has been caught engaging in election fraud over and over again, and is blatantly preparing to do so again by transferring all voting to mail-in ballots. Election fraud also includes complicit judges and manipulation of the media. Since the left controls much of the judiciary, and plaintiffs are often able to forum shop to pick a favorable judge, they are having some success.

While the left hasn’t taken over the police as happens under fascism, there are signs they are making inroads. Police are arresting and citing people for not wearing masks. They arrested two pro-life protesters for merely writing “Black Preborn Lives Matter” in chalk on the sidewalk outside a Planned Parenthood. In contrast, Antifa and Black Lives Matter spray paint slogans on businesses and nothing happens. Michelle Malkin recently attended a Law Enforcement Appreciation Day in Denver and the police did nothing as radical left thugs beat the attendees. Since Democrats control the big cities, where the police chiefs report to the mayor, they are able to dictate how the police behave.

Antifa blatantly refers to its members as “comrades,” a leftover term from communist Russia. Many of their members admit they are communists. Communism is a close cousin of fascism, with the government controlling everything (Marxists claim that the people own everything under communism, but it’s never worked out that way).

It’s way overdue to start referring to Antifa as fascists and calling them out when they act like them. Don’t let them get away with labeling all conservatives as fascists. We’re not the ones trying to get the government to take over everything and stomp out the opposition.


Australia announces changes to citizenship test and English language program for migrants

In a major policy overhaul impacting migrants, Acting Immigration Minister Alan Tudge has announced that Australia will be updating the citizenship test with a strong focus on Australian values to boost social cohesion.

Flagging the changes in an address to the National Press Club in Canberra on Friday, Minister Tudge said new questions “on Australian values” will be included in the citizenship tests.

“Australian citizenship is both a privilege and a responsibility, and it should be granted to those who support our values, respect our laws, and want to contribute to Australia’s future,” he said.

Minister Tudge particularly recognised the efforts of the volunteers of the Sikh community who provided free meals to over 3,000 residents of the nine public housing estates in north Melbourne that were forced into “hard lockdown” amid a COVID-19 outbreak in July earlier this year.

“When you see Buddhist monks providing free massages to weary fire-fighters, Muslim builders putting on barbeques for bushfire survivors, Irish truck drivers delivering hundreds of thousands of litres of water, and Sikhs cooking and delivering curries to Melbourne’s public housing estates during the COVID lockdown, you know we have something special in this nation,” said Minister Tudge.

A record number of people – over 200,000 pledged their allegiance to Australia in 2019-20, of which a majority were from India.

Melbourne-based permanent resident Simreet Dua who is keen to be added to the list of Australian citizens this year said most migrants who want to assimilate into the country’s social fabric would welcome the inclusion of questions on Australian democratic values in the citizenship test.

“While it is too early to comment what the revised tests would look like, I strongly believe that all migrants should be across the Australian values, to be able to integrate into the Australian society and to make a valuable contribution to its culture and even economy,” said the 32-year-old.

Minister Tudge also announced that migrants who can’t speak English will be allowed to attend an uncapped number of free language classes in an overhaul of the billion-dollar worth Adult Migrant English Program (AMEP), which currently offers 510 hours of free tuition to be completed within five years.

Under the changes, the government has announced it will not only scrap the cap on the hours but also remove time limits on the classes, enabling permanent residents or citizens to be able to attend classes free of charge until they have acquired "functional English.”

“Without English language skills, migrants are less likely to get a job, less likely to integrate, and less likely to participate in our democracy,” said Mr Tudge.

Census data indicates that around half of overseas-born Australians who arrived with no English skills still cannot speak the language well, or at all after 15 years of residency.

Former senior Immigration Department official Abul Rizvi said while the English language is a key element of successfully integrating migrants into Australia, the question remains how much more money is the Morrison government willing to allocate towards the expansion of AMEP.

"No one can deny that the English language is important for migrants to communicate and survive in Australia. But the thing to watch out for is how much more money is the government allocating to this approach. If the answer is zero then you will have to question what the value of the policy is?” questioned Mr Rizvi.

He said the key here is to encourage more migrants to attend and participate in these classes.

“The main problem is that many of the migrants who want to attend classes are also searching for work and are often working. And the difficulty is accessing AMEP while you’re working. Its accessibility is a greater challenge than the allocation or the hourly limit,” added Mr Rizvi.

Welcoming the changes to the English language program, Violet Roumeliotis, the CEO of Settlement Services International (SSI), a Sydney-based community organisation, that supports new migrants told SBS Punjabi that the change in the policy will “further strengthen” Australia’s resolve and success towards the settlement and integration of migrant communities.

"We welcome any move that will further enhance social cohesion for new migrants and lead to better settlement outcomes, especially during these unprecedented times,” said Ms Roumeliotis.



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.

Sunday, August 30, 2020

I saw the media’s “peaceful protesters” in person last night

An email from Adam Brandon, President, FreedomWorks

Forgive me for any typos, the adrenaline is still pumping after what I experienced last night.

Many of you likely watched President Trump’s speech at the RNC. I had the great honor of being there in person at the White House.

But it’s what happened AFTER the RNC wrapped up that I’m writing to you about today.

After the smoke cleared from the fireworks display, the real fireworks began. As I exited the gates of the White House lawn I was immediately met with protesters.

I was cursed at, shoved, and spit on.

Four men dressed in black chased me down the street. Luckily, I came across a hotel where a security guard let me in the lobby to escape the mob. I was able to get out through the garage, but it was like nothing I’ve ever experienced in my life.

I kept thinking how grateful I was that my pregnant wife stayed home last night.

But I wasn’t the only one this happened to…far from it!

FreedomWorks’ Director of External Affairs, Phil Bell – who is black – was called the most vile racial slurs imaginable because he dared to wear a red MAGA hat.

U.S. Senator Rand Paul and his wife were swarmed by the mob. There’s video of them trying to make their way through a crowd of angry protesters. In a tense moment, a protester pushed Senator Paul’s security guard who stumbled back into the couple.

Another group of protesters even constructed a 10-foot-tall guillotine complete with an effigy of President Trump and marched it down the streets of our capitol!

Friend, the riots and looting we’ve seen sweep the nation this summer are only the beginning.

The Radical Left is organizing what they’re actually calling a 50-day “siege” of the White House beginning on September 17th (Constitution Day).

They even have a hashtag, #WhiteHouseSiege, which they use to share “tactical briefings” to help “trigger another global big-bang moment.”

What will it take for the national media to STOP perpetuating the “peaceful protesters” LIE?

I think you and I BOTH know the answer to that…ONLY when their preferred political party seizes 100% control of Washington, D.C. this November.

It’s time to say, “NO!”

It’s time for the silent majority, the productive people who built this great country, and the hard-working men and women just scraping by under oppressive government-imposed lockdowns to stand up.

There’s still a long way to go until November 3, but time is really running thin for FreedomWorks to mobilize.

How do I know?

Well just last week The Washington Post published a hit piece on FreedomWorks riddled with errors and blatant lies.

They don’t like the fact that we’re exposing the massive flaws with the vote-by-mail system being pushed by Democrats.

They don’t like the fact that FreedomWorks is standing up to the mob.


Who killed George Floyd?

I said from the outset that the cops didn't kill him -- JR

The alleged “murder” of George Floyd by Minneapolis officer Derek Chauvin triggered the riots, looting and arson that have dominated the Summer months. That Floyd was murdered by the Minneapolis Police Department is an article of faith on the left and on many precincts of the right.

But is it true? Floyd’s case became internationally famous because of cell phone video that showed him slowly becoming unconscious while a police officer knelt on his neck. Surely he was asphyxiated! That conclusion seemed inescapable, especially since, while lying on the street with officers restraining him, Floyd complained of being unable to breathe. “I can’t breathe” became a Black Lives Matter battle cry.

But video that came out later showed that Floyd had been complaining of inability to breathe when he was standing up and walking around, long before he was on the street. And it emerged that the toxicology report associated with his autopsy found that he had at least double the dose of fentanyl in his blood that is normally considered lethal, along with other drugs. And shortness of breath is notoriously a symptom of fentanyl poisoning.

I wrote about all of that here. But now there is a new bombshell: on Tuesday, prosecutors who have charged Derek Chauvin with murder released a document that suggests that he had nothing to do with Floyd’s death, which in all likelihood resulted from a drug overdose. Not only that, prosecutors have known that fact for months. Former state and federal prosecutor George Parry has the story. It was linked earlier as a Pick, but I think deserves more attention:

At 7:30 p.m. on May 31, 2020, prosecutors “met” online with Dr. Andrew Baker, Chief Medical Examiner of Hennepin County, to discuss Floyd’s toxicology report.

The memo of that meeting is embedded at the link.

So there they were, staring at the just-received and damning toxicology report that blew to smithereens the whole prosecution theory that the police had killed Floyd. To their undoubted dismay, Dr. Baker, the chief medical examiner, had to concede that at 11 ng/mL, Floyd had “a fatal level of fentanyl under normal circumstances.” He also conceded that the fentanyl overdose “can cause pulmonary edema,” a frothy fluid build-up in the lungs that was evidenced by the finding at autopsy that Floyd’s lungs weighed two to three times normal weight.

This is consistent with Officer Kueng’s observation at the scene that Floyd was foaming at the mouth and, as found at autopsy, that his lungs were “diffusely congested and edematous.”

In other words, like a drowned man, Floyd’s lungs were filled with fluid. And that was the obvious and inescapable reason why Floyd kept shouting over and over again that he couldn’t breathe even when he was upright and mobile.

The memorandum ends with Dr. Baker’s devastating conclusion that “if Floyd had been found dead in his home (or anywhere else) and there were no other contributing factors he [Dr. Baker] would conclude that it was an overdose death.”

And yet the homicide prosecution against four Minneapolis Police Department officers continues.

It is quite telling that this explosively exculpatory June 1 memorandum was not released by the prosecution until August 25, 2020. All of which prompts these questions:

First, why did the prosecution wait three months to release this memorandum?

Second, if the prosecution had released this information in a timely fashion, would that have helped to quell the anti-police outrage that has fueled the nationwide orgy of rioting and looting?

Third, in light of Floyd’s toxicology results and the medical examiner’s assessment that Floyd’s fentanyl overdose caused him to essentially drown in his own bodily fluid, why haven’t the charges against all of the police defendants been dropped?

I can answer the last question. If charges against Derek Chauvin and the other officers were dropped, rioting would break out not just in Minneapolis, but across the country. Broad swaths of the City of Minneapolis have already been burned to the ground, and that is probably nothing compared to what Black Lives Matter would do if the criminal justice system followed normal procedures. Derek Chauvin, at this point, is a man without a country, a man who probably cannot receive a fair trial anywhere in the United States. Certainly not in Hennepin County, where he has been charged.

Sorry, Derek. The normal rules don’t apply to you. Raisons d’État–reasons of state–dictate that you spend the rest of your life in prison. Civic authorities are too frightened of rioters, or too sympathetic with their cause, for it to be otherwise.


Conservative members of the House are asking Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos to answer questions as to why some conservatives appear to have been banned from using Amazon Smile, an Amazon charity program.

“The exclusion of these conservative groups from Amazon’s heavily-trafficked digital platform leads to less exposure for these groups and fewer opportunities for donations,” the letter reads, which was obtained by Fox Business and signed by Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee.

The Amazon charity program, Amazon Smile, according to its website, donates 0.5% of eligible purchases to the designated charitable organization with no added costs or fees but some conservative organizations are not allowed to use the program, which raised $100 million in 2018 for charities that took part, Fox News reported.

Amazon Smile follows the recommendations of the left-wing Southern Poverty Law Center on charitable organizations, and the Southern Poverty Law Center designates organizations like the Family Research Council and Alliance Defending Freedom as hate groups.

 “Amazon’s reliance on the SPLC as a barometer to determine the eligibility of charitable organizations on AmazonSmile serves to discriminate against conservative views,” the letter reads, which was also signed by Rep. James Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., who sits on the House Judiciary Committee, and 13 other House Republicans.

The letter adds:

Amazon’s reliance on the SPLC as a barometer to determine the eligibility of charitable organizations on AmazonSmile serves to discriminate against conservative views.

While Amazon customers can use the AmazonSmile program to donate a portion of each purchase to left-leaning organizations like Planned Parenthood, the Freedom From Religion Foundation, and the Center for American Progress (and to be fair, to many right-leaning organizations, too), Amazon has decided to single out a few well-known conservative organizations like FRC and ADF from receiving part of the tens of millions of dollars the program raises each year from customers.

James says that Amazon has a right to run its company the way it sees fit, but should also care about the rights of its consumers.

“While Amazon is within its rights as a private company to conduct its business the way it wants, consumers also have a right to complain to Amazon and to ultimately decide not to do business with the retailer if their complaints aren’t taken seriously.”


Cultural Revolution: What the Violence in American Cities Is All About

It is hard to tell what the current revolutionary violence in our major cities is all about.

So far, hundreds of police have been injured, dozens of people have been killed, and we have seen billions of dollars in property and collateral damage.

Ostensibly, many of the summer demonstrations were in protest over the gruesome detention and death of George Floyd while in Minneapolis police custody on May 25.

Yet three months later, few of those trying to burn down a Portland police precinct—with police barricaded inside—or looting the high-end boutiques of Chicago’s Magnificent Mile, or indiscriminately beating up innocent pedestrians, appear to be driven by Floyd’s death.

Apologists argue that the perfect-storm furor of June, July, and August was the dividend of a collective six-month fear over the COVID-19 pandemic that has, as of this writing, killed nearly 180,000 Americans.

The unprecedented national quarantine and the sudden, self-generated recession of a once-booming economy certainly added to the tensions.

Millions of youths were sequestered in their apartments and basements, unemployed, without school, and worried over their career prospects. Many simply wanted to vent their rage at the world and almost everything in it.

The media romanticized the “summer of love” unrest and downplayed the violence. Newspapers ran bizarre photo essays on the chic garb at the protests—umbrellas, leaf blowers, wooden shields, armor, and colored bike helmets.

Many in the street seemed as interested in taking selfies as they were in smashing windows.

Some cite furor directed at President Donald Trump, the tensions of an election year, and the weaponization of almost every current issue by both political parties.

Still others claim the violence is mostly careerist-driven. Demands are made to fire ideological enemies and hire partisan friends. If the old guard is banished, then their lucrative billets can be snapped up by a new woke generation. Demagogues see political careers birthed with the bullhorn.

None of these explanations are mutually exclusive. But all reflect confusion over why often senseless vandalism has been directed at statues of Ulysses S. Grant and Frederick Douglass, and at the World War II Memorial.

Why do liberal authors and artists fear there is a new McCarthyite cancel culture that threatens to take out even progressive sympathizers?

Why do city governments defund police departments at the very moment vulnerable residents are most fearful for their safety?

Note that there are rarely demands from Antifa for new statues, given that the protesters’ own heroes are often more flawed than the historical figures whose statues they deface and destroy.

What, then, is going on?

As with most cultural revolutions that wish to start things over at “year zero,” the violence is aimed at America’s past in order to change its present and future.

The targets are not just the old majority culture but also classical statues and buildings, hallowed institutions, religious icons, the renowned names of streets and plazas, and almost every representation of tradition and authority.

For the majority of Americans who do not buy into the revolution, it all seems so surreal—and hypocritical.

Only a despised, dynamic American economy allows millions to divorce from it for a summer of protest.

A ridiculed U.S. Constitution ensures that looters and arsonists have due process.

The Bill of Rights guarantees peaceful assembly and electrically amplified profanity rarely protected elsewhere.

Affirmative action; federally ensured and subsidized college grants and loans; and cheap smartphones, headphones, and laptops all give youth choices unimagined in the past.

No matter—cultural revolutions are incoherent and nihilist.

Those who signed up for the Jacobin Reign of Terror wanted violence, not a constitutional republic to replace the French monarchy.

The Bolsheviks were less interested in substituting an elected prime minister for the Russian czar than in grabbing power and murdering millions of their enemies.

Mao Zedong did not just hate the warlords, landlords, Mandarins, and Nationalists. He wished to reinvent 1 billion Chinese in his own narcissistic image by first killing millions.

There is, of course, reason to oversee the police more effectively.

Universities are partly culpable for a collective $1.4 trillion in student loan debt.

Globalization eroded the middle class. Inner-city America is far too violent—and far too neglected.

But these are not the apparent concerns of those who carry off shoes and phones in U-Hauls, kick the unconscious on the pavement, destroy art and sculpture, or seek to torch public buildings with public servants inside.

The point of the mob is to wipe out what it cannot create.

It topples what it can neither match nor even comprehend.

It would erode the very system that ensures it singular freedom, leisure, and historic affluence.

The brand of the anarchist is not logic but envy-driven power: to take it, to keep it, and to use it against purported enemies—which would otherwise be impossible in times of calm or through the ballot box.



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

Friday, August 28, 2020

'White silence is violence': Aggressive mob of white BLM protesters threaten and film white diners at DC restaurants and DEMAND they raise their fist and show solidarity with them.... or else

A large crowd of Black Lives Matter protesters have accosted white diners outside several Washington, D.C. restaurants, demanding that they raise their fists to show solidarity with the movement.

Footage showing the demonstrators aggressively yelling at one woman in the Adams Morgan neighborhood went viral on social media and sparked a widespread backlash. 

The footage, taken by a Washington Post reporter shows the woman, identified as Lauren Victor, being shouted at by white protesters after she refuses to raise her fist.

The group crowded Victor's table, with two female demonstrators leaning down and shouting in her face.

'Are you a Christian?' one of the women shout, outraged by the fact Victor was unwilling to raise her fist in solidarity. 

'No justice, no peace!' the large group of activists then start yelling.  

Post reporter Fredrick Kunkle identified freelance journalist Chuck Modiano as one of the people who had yelled at Victor.

He claims Modiano shouted at the woman: 'What was in you, you couldn’t do this?'

But Modiano later took to Twitter to deny yelling at Victor, insisting 'Not true. We also spoke cordially for 20 min.'

Victor later told Kunkle that she felt that she was 'under attack'.

Ironically, Victor is a supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement and has participated in many marches, but didn't want to be 'coerced' into showing support. 'In the moment, it didn't feel right,' she stated.

'I wasn't actually frightened. I didn't think they'd do anything to me. I'm very much with them. I've been marching with them for weeks and weeks and weeks.' 

Many on Twitter took issue with the race of the Black Lives Matter protesters accosting Victor.

Almost all of those seen in the video were white, with several people accusing the activists of undermining the positive work that black organizers have been doing in recent months.

'I see no black faces at all. These dopes will ruin this movement for all of us,' African-American TV anchor Derek McGinty wrote.

Others stated that it would turn people away from supporting the movement.

'You don't win supporters by screaming in people's faces and intimidating them. How many people have watched this video and been turned off? Is it about making a real change or just ego gratification?

Another bluntly theorized: 'This gives Trump four more years.'

Meanwhile, other videos showed the protesters screaming at another couple at a separate restaurant, calling them 'trash' for refusing to raise their fists.

The incidents occurred after police shot unarmed black man Jacob Blake, 29, in Kenosha, Wisconsin - an event that has re-energized many Black Lives Matter protesters.

Blake was tasered and shot seven times by police as they tried to arrest him during a domestic dispute. He is being treated in hospital, and his family say he has been paralyzed from the waist down.

The shooting has been followed by three nights of protests, rioting and property damage in the city. The event has also given a renewed urgency to many Black Lives Matter groups across the nation.

There has been overwhelming public support for Black Lives Matter protests, which have been taking place across the country following the death of unarmed black man George Floyd on Memorial Day.

However, there have been instances where some have questioned whether the movement's leaders have gone too far in trying to subordinate both supporters and passersby.

Back in June, several white police officers and community members gathered to wash the feet of black faith leaders in North Carolina.

While many believed the act would bring racial groups closer together, some argued that white people appeared to be in a state of capitulation, and that the feet-washing symbolized submission, as opposed to equality.

Elsewhere, white protesters have also knelt in front of black community members and asked for forgiveness.

Meanwhile, disturbing video circulating on social media back in June showed a black man ordering random white pedestrians in New York City to kneel down in front of him and apologize.


Many "boat people" arriving in Britain are just seeking the best deal

It might seem surprising at first sight that up to 1000 illegal immigrants a week have been trying — most of them successfully — to cross the English Channel from France. Why would these people, originally from various African and Middle Eastern countries, want to flee the jurisdiction of the concerned internationalist Emmanuel Macron and seek refuge in the realm of the allegedly uncaring xenophobe Boris Johnson?

No doubt they have their — largely economic — reasons for preferring Britain to France, possibly based on the social security benefits initially available in the two countries.

It is no criticism of these people to describe them as economic immigrants. The same could be said of almost all those who have come to Australia from other parts of the world in the post-war years.

But in almost all cases, those setting sail across the Channel are not victims of political or other persecution in their homeland. They would presumably also be aware that Britain’s legal system, like Australia’s, makes it difficult to expel a person once they have gained entry to either country.

The largest component of cases in the Federal Court of Australia is that of claims brought by unauthorised entrants to Australia — in the sense that they did not come as legal immigrants — who have been denied permanent residency. Many of these cases proceed first through the federal Administrative Appeals Tribunal, the Federal Circuit Court and then to the Federal Court. The cost of these proceedings to the taxpayer, in the form of legal fees paid by the federal government and the court resources consumed, is considerable. During this period of litigation, which in some cases has lasted for up to a decade, any moves by the authorities to deport the person in question remain suspended.

All this raises the question of what countries such as Britain and Australia, which have immigra­tion and refugee programs, should do about unauthorised immigrants who choose not to take those official routes to residency. Britain and Australia have the advantage of being islands so, to some ­extent, are better able to control unauthorised entry — but, as the flood of small craft across the Channel indicates, they are not immune from this problem and, in any case, many of these entrants arrive in Britain, as for Australia, by plane.

There is evidence that the French coast guard has escorted some of these boats to British ­waters where they are taken in charge by British naval and border vessels. Most of those on the boats are young men but some are unaccompanied children whose families have paid for them to be transported from France.

The 1951 Geneva Convention on the status of refugees has been overtaken by population movements in various parts of the world.

The convention was designed to deal with a small group who had left their countries because of a well-founded view of being persecuted by reason of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion. There are still people in some countries facing this kind of persecution, but the convention was not designed to deal with a situation where millions of people want to move from their own country to one with ­better economic opportunities and then claim to be refugees from persecution.

There is an assumption in the convention, perhaps quite reasonable in 1951, that genuine refugees would seek asylum in the first country to which they gained access after leaving their own unsafe regime. But, with the sharply increased ease of movement in the postwar years, it became possible for intending immigrants to move across several countries in search of the most desirable goal. Those crossing from France to Britain could have made any claim for asylum in France and may have moved through several European countries before passing over the French borders.

All of this means that the convention needs substantial revision to reflect the realities of 2020, but there is no prospect of that in the immediate future. There are those in Western countries who appear to advocate completely open borders but, in the absence of such a fanciful policy, most countries will continue to face the increasingly intractable problem of confining entry to authorised immigrants and participants in official refugee programs.


Following the enactment of its pro-family policies, Hungary continues to see a growth in birthrates

From January to July of 2020, Hungary has seen a five per cent increase in the number of births, 2,488 more than the same period last year for a total of 52,825 births and increasing the country’s birthrate to 1.53 children per woman from 1.44.

Broken down by month, June saw the largest increase at 8.9 per cent and the period of January to February came second with an increase of 8.8 per cent. None of the months this year saw a decrease in births compared to 2019, newspaper Magyar Hirlap reports.

According to the Hungarian Central Bureau of Statistics, fewer people have died in Hungary this year as well, despite the coronavirus outbreak that has swept across Europe. Between January and July, nearly four thousand fewer deaths were recorded than in 2019.

Hungary has been one of the European countries to see the fewest number of coronavirus dearths per capita in Europe with just 613 deaths in a population of 9.7 million. Sweden, which has a population of around 10.1 million, by contrast, has seen 5,813 deaths as of Tuesday the 25th of August.

Marriages have also seen an increase this year with 2,158 more marriages this year compared to 2019.

As part of the pro-family policy enacted by the government of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, married couples are eligible for a $33,000 cash sum in the form of a loan which is forgiven after the couple has three children.

Earlier this month, Hungarian government spokesman Zoltán Kovács noted that more so-called “baby expecting loans” had been issued in the second half of last year than housing loans.

Prime Minister Orbán has been clear in the past that he views pro-family government policies as an alternative to solve demographic issues, rather than mass migration.

Speaking at the unveiling of a memorial last week, Orban laid out his views on the future of Europe and families when he said that leftists were “experimenting with a godless universe, with the rainbow reshaping of families, with migration and with open societies. Meanwhile, the peoples of Central Europe are in the process of restoring to their rightful place the time-honoured instincts for life, the liberating power of Christianity, the honour of work, national pride and duty towards our parents and children. We are defending our borders and we aim to leave our country to our own children and not to migrants.”


Australia: 'Major victory' for paedophiles as baffling law is passed that could see rape and sexual assault victims thrown into JAIL just for telling their stories

This is presumably to protect the offender but surely the interests of his victims come first

Victorian sexual assault survivors could be jailed for up to four months or face fines exceeding $3000 for telling their stories using their real names.

The Judicial Proceedings Reports Act was changed in February, prohibiting victims from identifying themselves publicly if their attacker has been found guilty.

The new law applies retrospectively, meaning victims who have lawfully spoken out previously are now censored from speaking out publicly. Media outlets who defy the law can also be prosecuted and face fines of up to $8,000.

The only way for victims to identify themselves and tell their stories is to obtain a court order - which is not only time consuming, but would cost more than $10,000 in legal fees.

Dr Rachael Burgin, lecturer in the Swinburne Law School, described the change in the law as a 'major victory' for convicted paedophiles and rapists.

She said thousands of survivors will now find they cannot tell their stories.

Not only can victim's no longer use their real names, they cannot provide any identifying features such as photos in publications such as memoirs and autobiographies unless they get a court order.

 'There is no way that I would just have $10,000 sitting around to pay to do this. (I’d) be taking money away from (my) family,' Maggie*, an adult survivor of child rape told        

Sexual assault survivors are now fighting for their right to share their stories, with the #LetUsSpeak campaign launched on Wednesday. The campaign, which is a collaboration between Rape and Sexual Assault Research and Advocacy (RASARA), Marque Lawyers, End Rape On Campus Australia, and is calling on the government to reform the law. 

Melbourne mother Maggie, 44, was raped from age eight by her father, who also sexually abused her older step sister Kate*.

When Maggie was 17, he was arrested and charged with rape and gross indecency as well as multiple counts of bestiality, after Kate reported her abuse to police. 

In May 1997, four days before the trial was set to begin, he shot Kate dead at work after tracking her down using a private investigator.   

He was sent to prison the following year, after pleading guilty to murder in exchange for the sexual offences being dropped. 

With his parole eligibility date looming, Maggie decided to come forward, resulting in her father receiving a nine-year jail sentence for multiple counts of incest and rape against her.  

However, in March this year, the Supreme Court of Appeal slashed his sentence for the crimes against Maggie and ruled he could serve them concurrently with his murder sentence, leaving him eligible for parole in June 2022.

'I’m now a mother of three beautiful children and I wouldn’t want him out in any community. I’m not just scared for my children. I’m scared for all children. I also have to be the voice for my sister too. She never got justice for the sexual abuse she experienced either,' Maggie said.

Maggie contacted Australian media outlets to draw attention to the lenient sentences given to paedophilles, only to learn of the new law that makes it a crime for the media to publish her name, or her fathers, as it could indirectly identify her. 

'My sister was murdered for trying to tell her story and now I’m stopped from telling mine. He has all the power again. It has to change,' Maggie said.

Victorian Attorney-General, Jill Hennessy has written to Maggie and other members of the #LetUsSpeak campaign to say she is 'very sorry' to hear of their experiences.

She has requested the Department of Justice and Community Safety look into the cases.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to cover the court costs of survivors battling to overturn the gag law.

Similar gag laws were overturned in the Northern Territory and Tasmania earlier this year as a result of #LetUsSpeak campaign.

However, they differed to the Victorian legislation as they were out-dated pre-existing policies.



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

Thursday, August 27, 2020

A California nightmare

California Governor Gavin Newsom’s diminished dream of connecting the city of Merced (population 83,964) to Bakersfield (population 390,233) has hit a snag. Several steel cables in a 636-foot-long bridge built to support construction of the project have corroded and snapped, forcing a new work stoppage on the years-long delayed project.

The Los Angeles Times‘ Ralph Vartabedian describes the ill-fated project’s latest “snafu”:

Hundreds of pages of documents obtained by The Times under a public records request show the steel supports snapped as a result of neglect, work damage, miscommunications and possible design problems.

“It is a horrible sequence of mistakes,” said Robert Bea, emeritus professor of civil engineering at UC Berkeley and co-founder of its Center for Catastrophic Risk Management....

High-strength steel strands supporting the 636-foot-long structure began to snap on Oct. 22, one after another. Ultimately, 23 of the strands, which are composed of seven individual wires each, broke unexpectedly, according to rail authority documents and officials. The order to stop work was issued Nov. 4.

A forensic engineering analysis, obtained by The Times, found that the strands corroded from rainwater that had leaked into the internal structure of the bridge and then broke. The analysis was prepared for Tutor Perini by the forensic engineering firm Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates of Northbrook, Ill.

The report focuses on the state’s multiple layers of management and its dependence on consultants to oversee the project’s bureaucracy.

Gov. Gavin Newsom told The Times in 2019 that he was “going to get rid of a lot of consultants,” but they remain integral to the project, according to engineering specialists and officials involved with bullet train planning.

“The layers on this project are onerous,” said William Ibbs, a UC Berkeley civil engineering professor who has consulted on high-speed rail projects around the world. “The levels of administration and review are very unusual. No one company is going to be wholly to blame if something goes wrong, because they can spread the blame around.”

“It isn’t getting any better,” said an executive at one firm working on the project, who asked not to be identified because he was not authorized to speak to the news media. “It is such a pillage of the taxpayers.”

A “horrible series of mistakes” and a “pillage of the taxpayers” doesn’t happen by accident. Nobody wants to be held accountable for the failure of California’s zombie bullet train project, and the people who know this best want to keep it that way, including Gov. Newsom, who never followed up his April 2019 promise to fix the state’s over-reliance on the consultant-based bureaucracy it created.

Because nobody’s truly responsible for it, California’s zombie bullet train continues lumbering on from one failure to another. It’s time to permanently put the project out of its sad existence.


Democrats Hate the Nation They Want to Rule

Why does the party want to lead if its leaders can't stand the people they're leading?

“Loving the people you lead, caring deeply about them, is the basic prerequisite of leadership. The leaders of today’s Democratic Party do not. They despise this country. They have said so. They continue to. That is shocking, but it is also disqualifying. We cannot let them run this nation because they hate it. Imagine what they would do to it.” —Fox News host Tucker Carlson, July 6, 2020

Carlson is right. Democrat Party politicos have made it clear they believe our nation is a systemically racist, xenophobic construct so irreparably flawed that only “fundamental transformation” can save it. That the endgame of such transformation would be the acquisition of unassailable power by Democrats is sold as “coincidental” by those same leftists and their corporate mouthpiece, the mainstream media.

Thus, Americans are supposed to believe the Democrats’ desire to eliminate the Electoral College, grant amnesty to 11-22 million illegal aliens, pack the Supreme Court with additional justices, and force-feed hate-America propagandist “history” to public school students is nothing more than the same political business as usual that attends every election season.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Ever since the Left’s stunning defeat in 2016, courtesy of a political novice with many flaws — but an undeniable love for America — Democrats have done everything they can think of to undermine Donald Trump’s presidency. Even before he was inaugurated, a movement was initiated to flip Electoral College electors. On Inauguration Day itself, The Washington Post ran a story with the headline, “The campaign to impeach President Trump has begun,” meaning the effort to remove him from office was preconceived.

And then came the plots. They ranged from puerile, as in the New York Times story about former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein wearing a wire as a means of amassing evidence to prove Trump was unfit for office and thus removable under the 25th Amendment, to the worst scandal in American history, as in the attempted coup that went by the name of Crossfire Hurricane, engendered by the most corrupt administration this nation has ever endured.

In between, there were three years of a wholly unjustified investigation into “Russian collusion!” followed by an attempted impeachment led by party hack Adam Schiff, who hid exculpatory evidence and blatantly lied about speaking with the Ukraine “whistleblower” prior to the hearings. Whistleblower is in quotes because, despite media denials, the Intelligence Community Inspector General ultimately released a statement admitting the office changed its forms for whistleblowers so that firsthand knowledge of the wrongdoing they were reporting was no longer required.

Then came the pandemic for which Trump was first branded a racist and xenophobe for noting it originated in China and for quickly initiating a travel ban. He subsequently became a man with “blood on his hands” for acting too slowly, even as the sclerotic bureaucracies that existed long before Trump came on the scene failed to meet even the most basic challenges of pandemic management.

As the virus gained hold, Democrats showed their true colors, precipitating draconian and wholly capricious lockdowns (churches closed, abortion clinics and liquor stores open), even as those who protested these unconstitutional maneuvers in states like Michigan were deemed dangerous, while those who obliterated history and looted and burned cities to the ground were deemed righteous and peaceful — until those demonstrations “intensified,” as our feckless media characterized their descent into blatant anarchy.

In response, Democrats aligned themselves with antifa, a conglomeration of upper-middle-class fascist thugs whose “revolutions” consist of burning down police stations and businesses (many minority-owned), assaulting police, blocking major highways, and indiscriminately destroying historical artifacts. Democrats are also aligned with Black Lives Matter, an entity run by self-admitted Marxists, whose true agenda was laid bare in Chicago this week when they held a rally for the looters who perpetrated at least $60 million in property damage and injured 13 police officers. “That is reparations,” a BLM organizer stated. “Anything they wanted to take, they can take it because these businesses have insurance.”

Has there ever been an American political party so contemptuous of its own nation that it is willing to allow its own jurisdictions to descend into complete chaos, even as it champions efforts to defund police departments? Has there ever been one willing to hold the American public hostage in the midst of an economy-crushing pandemic for nothing more than a fiscal shakedown aimed at bailing out Democrat-run cities and states, many of them illegal sanctuaries, for decades of wholesale mismanagement, wholly unrelated to the pandemic?

More important, has there ever been a party with more contempt for ordinary Americans? Last week, former Clinton adviser and CNN political commentator Paul Begala declared that President Donald Trump was “sucking up” to his “white nationalist base.” In other words, a major player in the Democrat Party automatically assumes that “white nationalist base” is a pejorative term — in a nation with a Caucasian majority that believes in American exceptionalism.

All of the above is quite revealing. Democrats are so contemptuous of our nation’s institutions and laws that they believe any election or agenda where they fail to prevail is illegitimate and should be resisted — by any means necessary.

“The American Left is different from a lot of the global illiberal lefts in that they’re the only ones that don’t like their country,” asserted Chris Bedford, senior editor of The Federalist, in an appearance on Carlson’s show. “The Cubans, the Soviets, the Chinese, they’re all fiercely patriotic. We don’t have that.”

What we have instead is a globalist agenda wholly supported by Democrats. One where the nation-state itself is an anachronism, and international labor, even slave labor, will be abided, irrespective of the devastation wreaked on American workers. One where a cadre of multinational corporate elites completely disdain patriotism and national security in favor of market share, silence dissenting opinions, and/or completely cancel their promulgators. One where surveillance and data mining are sold as beneficial, even as they ultimately evolve into totalitarian-based “social credit systems” akin to those in Communist China — the same Communist China with whom elitists in business, academia, and Hollywood still curry favor, even as millions of their fellow Americans have been devastated by China’s contemptible duplicity regarding the pandemic.

Not even elections are sacrosanct. Despite the utter fiasco revealed by mail-in voting in New York — where thousands of ballots were invalidated and results of local races remain undecided six weeks after the polls closed — the same Democrat Party that eschews voter ID as “racist” still contends voting by mail is a viable way to run a national election.

That a similar delay — or much worse — in determining who is president could undermine all faith in the integrity of the election process? Only a party that hates America would be willing to so thoroughly bastardize one of our most cherished privileges.

“Once upon a time, trying to torch a federal courthouse would earn years in prison,” states Victor Davis Hanson. “And simply taking over a large chunk of a downtown to re-create Lord of the Flies was unthinkable. Not now.”

In their quest for control, a Democrat Party that hates America is openly abetting the unthinkable. Come November, it is up to the American electorate to disabuse them of their execrable ambitions — in no uncertain terms.


British Museum bosses remove bust of founder over his links to slavery

The British Museum has removed a bust of its founder from a pedestal and labelled him a ‘slave owner’.

The effigy of Sir Hans Sloane will now be housed in a display alongside artefacts that explain his legacy in the ‘exploitative context of the British Empire’, curators said.

Sloane, whose 71,000 artefacts became the starting point of the British Museum after he left them to the state in his will, funded his collecting through his wife’s family’s sugar plantation. Sloane Square in London is also named after him.

The bust now sits as part of a display which explains his work as a ‘collector [and] slave owner’.

The museum’s director, Hartwig Fischer, said the institution had deliberately ‘pushed him off the pedestal’. Mr Fischer added: ‘We must not hide anything. Healing is knowledge.’

The move is part of an overhaul of the museum’s collections to acknowledge its links to slavery and colonialism that will eventually involve ‘redisplaying the whole British Museum’.

Other artefacts, such as those taken by Captain James Cook on his voyages, will be labelled to show they were acquired through ‘colonial conquest and military looting’.


No reason to taint with guilt our faith in Western culture

We all know the joke that Mahatma Gandhi supposedly made when he was asked what he thought about Western civilisation: “I think it might be a good idea.” The gag is apocryphal, in fact, first appearing two decades after his death, but very many people have taken it literally, arguing that there really is no such thing as Western civilisation, from ideologues such as Noam Chomsky to the activists of the Rhodes Must Fall movement at Oxford University who have succeeded in pulling down the statue of the benefactor of the Rhodes scholarships from Oriel College.

This belief that Western civilisation is, at heart, uniquely morally defective has recently been exemplified by The New York Times’ inane and wildly historically inaccurate 1619 Project, which essentially attempts to present the entirety of American history from Plymouth Rock to today solely through the prism of race and slavery.

“America Wasn’t a Democracy Until Black Americans Made it One”, was the headline of one essay in The New York Times Magazine launching the Project, alongside, “American Capitalism is Brutal: You Can Trace That to the Plantation” and “How Segregation Caused Your Traffic Jam”. When no fewer than 12 – in the circumstances very brave – American Civil War historians sent a letter itemising all the myriad factual errors in the Project’s founding document, The New York Times refused to print it, yet the Project plans to create and distribute school curriculums that will “re-centre” America’s memory.

None of this would amount to much if only schools and colleges in Britain, America, Australia and across the English-speaking peoples were not so keen to apologise for and deny Western civilisation, and to abolish or dumb down the teaching of important aspects of it.

The classics faculty at Oxford University, to take one example of many, has recently recommended that Homer’s Iliad and Virgil’s Aeneid be removed from the syllabus in ancient literature, history and philosophy, giving as its reason the difference in recent exam results between male and female undergraduates, and the difference in expertise in Latin and Greek between privately and publicly educated students. One of the supposed guardians of the discipline is therefore willing to put social experimentation before the best possible teaching of the humanities, a disgraceful position to have been adopted by Britain’s second-best university.

Yet, instead of apologising for Western civilisation, we should still believe in it and be proud of it. For all that we must of course take proper cognisance of other cultures, in terms of both its sheer quality and quantity the legacy of Western culture is unsurpassed in human history. We are deliberately underplaying the greatest contributions made to poetry, architecture, philosophy, music and art by ignoring that fact, often simply in order to try to feel less guilty about imperialism, colonialism and slavery, even though the last was a moral crime committed by only a minority of some few people’s great-great-great grandparents.

As a result, future generations cannot be certain that they will be taught about the overwhelmingly positive aspects of Western civilisation. They might not now be shown the crucial interconnection between, for example, the chapel by Giotto at Padua, which articulates the complex scholasticism of St Augustine in paint; Machiavelli’s The Prince, the first work of modern political theory; Botticelli’s Primavera, the quintessence of Renaissance humanism in a single painting; the works of Teresa of Avila and Descartes, which wrestle with the proof of discrete individual identity; Beethoven’s symphonies, arguably the most complex and profound orchestral works ever written, and Shakespeare, whose plays Harold Bloom has pointed out “remain the outward limit of human achievement: aesthetically, cognitively, in certain ways morally, even spiritually”. Even if they are taught about these things individually, they will not be connected in a context that makes it clear how important they are to Western civilisation.

What the old Western civ university courses really did was to root a people in their past and their values. The trajectory of Western culture was shown to have run from Greece via Rome to Christendom, infused by Judaic ideas and morality along the way via Jerusalem, but then detouring briefly through the Dark Ages, recovering in the Renaissance, which led to the Reformation, the Enlightenment and thus the scientific, rational and politically liberated culture of Europe and European America. “From Plato to NATO”, as the catchphrase went.

At the centre of this transference of values across time and space was democracy, of which Winston Churchill famously said: “Many forms of government have been tried, and will be tried in this world of sin and woe. No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed, it has been said that democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.”

The generations who grew up knowing that truth, rather than weltering in guilt and self-doubt about “false consciousness” and so on, were the lucky ones, because they were allowed to study the glories of Western civilisation in a way that was unembarrassed, unashamed and not saddled with accusations of guilt in a centuries-old crime that had absolutely nothing to do with them. They could learn about the best of their civilisation, and how it benefited — and continues to benefit — mankind.

As Ian Jenkins, the senior curator of the Ancient Greek collection at the British Museum, put it in his book on the Elgin Marbles – somewhat politically correctly entitled The Parthenon Sculptures — “Human figures in the frieze are more than mere portraits of the Athenian people of the day. Rather they represent a timeless humanity, one which transcends the present to encompass a universal vision of an ideal society”. It was no coincidence that interest in them permeated the Western Enlightenments of the 18th century.

While the Parthenon was being built, Pericles contrasted the openness and moderation of Athenian civic life with the militaristic, secretive, dictatorial Spartans in his Funeral Speech of 430BC, and this struck a chord with the Enlightenment thinkers of 23 centuries later, just as it should continue to with us today, reminding us why Western values are indeed superior to those that actuate the leaders of modern China, Russia, Iran, Venezuela, North Korea and Zimbabwe. And yes, we know that the architect Phidias employed slaves and metic foreigners in building the Parthenon, not just Athenian freemen.

“Carved around the middle of the 5th century BC,” writes Neil McGregor, former director of the British Museum, the Elgin Marbles “are the product of a creative culture that is credited with the invention of such aspects of modern Western civilisation as democracy, philosophy, history, medicine, poetry and drama.” Of course, no one is claiming that ancient Oriental, Persian and Arab civilisations did not have all of those listed — except democracy, which they did not then and most still do not today — and no one suggests that South Sea islanders, the Aztecs and Incas, Ancient Egyptians or the Khmer Empire that build Angkor Wat for the god Vishnu did not have their own worthy civilisations too.

“From the constitution drafted by the founding father of the American republic to the wartime speeches of Winston Churchill,” Jenkins writes, “many have found inspiration for their brand of human liberalism, and for a doctrine of the open society, in the Funeral Speech of Pericles.” If Pericles had lost an election or was ostracised in the annual vote of Athenians, he would have stood down from office in the same way that Boris Johnson, Angela Merkel, Scott Morrison and Emmanuel Macron would after a defeat in a free and fair election in their countries, whereas that is inconceivable in many totalitarian countries not infused by the ethics of the West.

Christianity, too, for all its intolerance and occasional obscurantism and obnoxious iconoclasm, has been overall an enormous force for good in the world. The Sermon on the Mount was, as Churchill put it, “the last word in ethics”. Christians abolished slavery in the 1830s (or three decades later in America’s case), whereas outside Christendom the practice survived for much longer, and identifiable versions of it still exist in some non-Christian and anti-Christian countries today.

The abolition of slavery did not merely happen by votes in parliament and proclamations from presidents; it was fought for by (and against) Christians with much blood spilt on both sides. That would not have happened without the Judaeo-Christian values that are so central to Western civilisation. That is ultimately why we should still believe in Western civilisation, not apologise for it; why it should be proselytised around the world, and certainly taught as a discrete discipline in our schools and universities.



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

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Chaos in Wisconsin City as Rioters Burn Buildings, Attack Police

Once again defiant behavior towards the police by a black criminal leads to a chain of unfortunate events

Rioters in Kenosha, Wisconsin, burned buildings, looted stores, and attacked police officers overnight on Aug. 23. The mayhem prompted the city and county to issue a curfew until 7 a.m.

A public safety alert urged business owners to consider closing “due to numerous arm[ed] robberies and shots fired calls.”

Video footage showed a number of businesses torched by rioters, including a car dealership.

The agitators clashed with police, attacking them with fireworks and other objects. At one point, a group blocked a sheriff’s vehicle from moving as one brandished a rifle.

Graffiti sprayed around the city suggested Black Lives Matter activists were involved in the chaos. Rioters “were chanting ‘black lives matter’ over and over and over again,” Drew Hernandez, an independent reporter who was on the ground, said in a video message.

Kenosha is located about 40 miles south of Milwaukee and 60 miles north of Chicago, next to Lake Michigan.

The rioting came hours after a black man, Jacob Blake, was shot by police officers when he allegedly resisted arrest. He was rushed to the hospital in serious condition.

Blake’s brother told Lauren Linder, a TMJ reporter, that Blake underwent surgery and was in the intensive care unit.  Blake’s family urged people to remain peaceful.

The state Department of Justice is probing the shooting.

According to court records, Blake had an arrest warrant issued in July for trespassing, third-degree sexual assault, and disorderly conduct.

The Kenosha Police Department said that officers were sent to a portion of 40th Street just after 5 p.m. for a domestic incident.

That response ultimately led to an officer-involved shooting, according to police officials.

Gov. Tony Evers, a Democrat, said Blake “was shot in the back multiple times in broad daylight.”

“While we do not have all of the details yet, what we know for certain is that he is not the first black man or person to have been shot or injured or mercilessly killed at the hands of individuals in law enforcement in our state or our country,” Evers said in a statement.

“I have said all along that although we must offer our empathy, equally important is our action. In the coming days, we will demand just that of elected officials in our state who have failed to recognize the racism in our state and our country for far too long,” he added later.

Evers’s office didn’t immediately respond to an inquiry regarding the potential use of state troopers or the National Guard to quell the unrest.

Republican President Donald Trump twice over the weekend said the federal government would help states and cities deal with rioting, if officials ask for assistance.

“Would bring in National Guard, end problem immediately. ASK!” he wrote on Twitter about the continued mayhem in Portland, Oregon.

“These riots are an antigovernment movement from the Left that are all in Democrat run cities. The mayors have got to let their police do what they know how to do. Would be very easy to suppress or, call in the Federal Government. We will solve problem fast!” he wrote in another tweet.

Federal officers helped deal with anarchy in Portland in July until Gov. Kate Brown, a Democrat, agreed to send state troopers to assist police officers in responding to the rioting. State troopers later left after the district attorney who oversees the city announced a new policy to presumptively drop some charges against demonstrators.


Seattle's 'Summer of Love' Mayor Durkan Vetoes Police Budget Cuts

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan (D) must wonder where all this is going.

The city council voted 7-1 this month to slash its police budget. The one vote against was not in defense of police; that council member voted against the cuts because they did not go far enough. The anti-police activist groups, who by and large have the media’s ear in Seattle as they do in every major city, slammed the cuts as not going far enough. Media never turn and ask any real questions of those activist groups, such as “When crime inevitably spikes and people die because the city council did what you want them to do, will you apologize to the mothers of those victims?”

Police Chief Carmen Best resigned after that vote, effective Sept. 2, not because the cuts slashed her pay (which they did), but because the city council’s vote reflected its disrespect for Seattle’s police (which it does). Best has been the lone adult in the city government during most of the crisis.

Durkan was fully on board with the antifa/BLM left, even handing them a slice of downtown Seattle for a while. That slice included both public and private property. When that got out of control, as Chief Best warned and any adult would have expected, Durkan defied reason and declared her hope that it would become a “summer of love.” Instead, the CHOP became a crime story. That’s what forced her to shut it down. The daily violations of Americans’ private property rights, free speech and free press in the “autonomous zone” were not enough.

Durkan’s own love affair with the riots and protests ended when they showed up to protest her on her lawn. You’ve heard of “not in my back yard,” the notion by which the Kennedys, who claim to favor all sorts of alternative energy, nevertheless vetoed windmills when they spoiled the family’s ocean view. Durkan took a “not in my front yard” view of the protesters when they turned up in hers. That was back at the end of June.

Since that time she has faced fast-rising crime on the streets she allegedly governs, a hard left city council that still demands to defund the police, street protests both opposing and supporting the police, and riots that still spring up, though not with quite the same gusto Portland sees night after night.

On Friday Durkan vetoed the city council’s police budget cuts. But she says she still wants to cut their budget. Just, not by as much as city council wants to. And she wants to see a plan.

The cuts would have totaled around $23 million of the remaining $127 million in the budget, KOMO News reported.

“This veto was because the bills, as passed, did not have the type of collaboration that I think we will have going forward, and that I’m hopeful we will have going forward,” Durkan said during a news conference. “There’s some flaws in each of these (bills) that I hope the council can correct, or with discussions, we can find a path forward together.

“I continue to have concerns about council decisions to make cuts before they have a plan,” she added.

Austin’s city council is guilty of the same. They slashed the police budget by a third, with no real plan for what’s next. What’s next is a boatload of police officer departures, a demoralized police department, emboldened criminals, and rising crime everywhere. Stores are increasingly being broken into and robbed across Austin. Police investigators, stretched to their limits, are taking longer to respond. The volume of crime is becoming more than they can keep up with. There was another homicide this weekend. Austin and Seattle are heading down the same path.

These city councils are bowing to hard left pressure groups — well, those city council members who don’t come directly from those groups are bowing to them — and slashing police budgets despite the fact that majorities everywhere oppose it. The hard left activists now control most of our large cities and they are hollowing them out. More than two decades of progress against crime is being undone in a few months. New York may take a decade to recover from Bill de Blasio, if it recovers at all.

Durkan vetoed these police budget cuts but she is no hero in this. She is beginning to behave somewhat responsibly, but it’s probably too late. She already lost her police chief to the mob. Her judgement was abysmal when CHOP sprung up. She only began to see reason when that turned into a crime-ridden abscess in the middle of the city, and when the rioters protested her directly. She’s still trying to appease the leftist activists on the one hand, and the police-supporting majority on the other. She’ll likely face a veto override on this vote, and a challenge from the left in the next election. That’s next year. She won in 2017 thanks to a scandal on the part of the incumbent, and a divided left-tilted vote in the primary. The second-place finisher in that primary was, you guessed it, another hard left local activist. As was the third-place finisher. Remove one and another just takes their place.


Conservatives Ceded Too Many Battlefields

Government agencies align against us because we don't have people in those jobs.

These days, many conservatives are wondering just how we got to the point where so many government agencies are riddled with people who seem willing to misuse their power for political gain. This has been the case not just in the bowels of the State Department or EPA but even in some areas of law enforcement and the intelligence community. While most of this can be traced to leftists’ penchant for power, one thing didn’t help matters: In far too many arenas of society, conservatives simply ceded the field — often without a fight.

The first field too many conservatives abandoned was pop culture. We’ve discussed the disparity before, but the entertainment industry can bring a lot of influence to bear on the issues, and entertainers give the Left a huge storytelling advantage, also known as “the narrative.”

But those fields aren’t the only ones the Right yielded. In higher academia, conservative professors are often mercilessly hounded until they are compelled to quit — or worse. (See the tragic case of Mike Adams.) These days, the few conservatives who work in higher education are isolated, fighting lonely fights with barely any support. At any point, phony charges of racism, sexism, etc. can be used to end a conservative professor’s career — even with tenure.

We don’t need to look far to see how those consequences mount for conservative professors and students alike. When college is the gateway for becoming a doctor, lawyer, or a vast number of other professions (including government work), professors and administrators become gatekeepers to those career paths.

That gatekeeper status has been abused in multiple ways, whether to freeze out conservatives or to engage in racial discrimination. Is anyone surprised, then, that a blind eye is turned to threats of violence that drive a conservative student out? Oddly enough, those same administrators now are dropping the use of standardized tests — the data of which has been some of the strongest evidence of racial discrimination.

What do you suppose will happen to those students and prospective students who don’t comply with the latest demands of political correctness? Is it any wonder that more than half of conservative students plan to just be quiet and keep their heads down?

In a similar vein, K-12 education also was ceded. These days, expressing conservative views can get a teacher terminated. But we didn’t see actions against the teachers and students who used the Parkland massacre to stage a “walkout” in favor of gun control, which was far more disruptive.

High school teachers, principals, and counselors are gatekeepers for college admission, but so are administrators. They control the hiring, firing, and promotions of those who teach our kids. When leftist activists run public schools, conservative applicants often don’t have much of a chance.

That brings us back to government work. Whether at the federal, state, or local government levels, many conservatives don’t think about the career positions that are involved. Whether they prefer to be in the private sector or they don’t think they can make a difference, or even if it’s just a general aversion to government, they pass up on those positions (law enforcement and national defense are the two general exceptions).

The result is a bureaucracy that has become a threat to our freedoms. Why? Because when everyone in the office thinks conservatives are Nazis — often because they live in a bubble where they don’t even encounter conservatives in real life — it’s easy to give themselves permission to put their thumbs on the scales.

Does anyone think that the IRS’s Lois Lerner would have dared try what she did if there were conservatives in the organization who had the ability to preserve documents and pass them to trustworthy media outlets? Would “John Doe” have happened in Wisconsin if those plotting that nefarious abuse worried about whistleblowers? If leftists trying to destroy the NRA for the “crime” of opposing gun control worried that internal discussions could find their way to the public, would they have backed off? Would coworkers have gone along if they knew colleagues who were sympathetic to conservative arguments?

The cession of multiple arenas to the Left has generated a perfect storm where those in pop culture paint Republicans and conservatives in the worst light, and the portrayals broadcast by the media eventually convince others that they have to act “to save democracy.” The bubbles that were built didn’t just come from the Left’s efforts over decades (although it was the primary factor); they also came from indifference on the Right.

Because conservatives didn’t even show up for the battles that had to be fought long ago, they face harder battles today. Things can and must be turned around, but it will be a very difficult fight.


Democrats Are Waging War Against Tradition and the Constitution

Several of the 2020 Democratic primary candidates favored the abolishment of the Electoral College. Or, as once-confident candidate Elizabeth Warren put it, “I plan to be the last American president to be elected by the Electoral College.”

Furor over the Electoral College among the left arose from the 2000 and 2016 elections. Al Gore and Hillary Clinton, respectively, won the popular votes. But, like three earlier presidents, they lost the Electoral College voting — and with it the presidency.

The Founding Fathers saw a purpose in the Electoral College. It ensured that small, rural states would retain importance in national elections.

The Electoral College lessened the chance of voting fraud affecting the outcome of a national vote by compartmentalizing the outcome among the various states. It usually turns the presidential election into a contest between two major parties that alone have the resources to campaign nationwide.

The college is antithetical to the parliamentary systems of Europe. There, a multiplicity of small extremist parties form and break coalitions to select heads of state, often without transparency.

Yet to change the U.S. Constitution is hard — and by intent.

Historically, an amendment has required a two-thirds vote of both houses of Congress and an additional ratification by three-fourths of the states through votes of their legislatures.

There is a chance that some states could render void the Electoral College without formally amending the Constitution.

To circumvent the Constitution, Democrats have pushed “The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact,” an agreement among a group of states that would force state electors to vote in accordance with the national popular vote and ignore their own state tallies. Already, 15 states totaling 73 percent of the 270 electoral votes necessary to win the presidency have joined.

Liberal academics have an array of proposed constitutional changes. Why do two Wyoming senators each represent about 290,000 voters while each California senator represents 20 million?

Forget that the founders established a constitutional republic, not a radical democracy, in order to check and balance popular and often volatile public opinion. One way was by creating an upper-house Senate that would slow down the pulse of the more populist House of Representatives.

Nevertheless, there is an ongoing effort to dream up ways to create more, and apparently liberal, senators — to change the rules rather than the hearts and minds of the voters.

In his recent eulogy at John Lewis’s funeral, Barack Obama proposed giving statehood to liberal Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. That would instantly give Democrats four additional senators.

Others want senators allotted by population. That was the argument in a recent Atlantic article titled “The Path to Give California 12 Senators, and Vermont Just One,”

There is nothing in the Constitution that specifies the exact size and makeup of the Supreme Court. It only offers guidance on how justices are appointed and confirmed, and that there will be a chief justice. But since 1869, the Supreme Court has been fixed at eight associate justices and one chief justice.

Democratic primary candidates Pete Buttigieg, Kamala Harris, Beto O’Rourke and Elizabeth Warren said they would consider ending that 151-year tradition and “pack” the court with additional justices in the fashion of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s failed 1937 effort.

The left is apparently afraid of a second Donald Trump presidential term that might allow him four or five Supreme Court picks over eight years in office.

The effect of such appointments could be mitigated by expanding the court to 12 or more justices, along with altering the rules for selecting them.

In his eulogy for Lewis, Obama also called for an end to the Senate filibuster. He claimed it was a racist relic from the Jim Crow era used to stymie needed social change.

Given recent polling, Obama now apparently believes Trump will lose the election, and Congress with it. But he also seems to fear that fundamental progressive transformation could be checked by a filibuster-happy Republican Senate minority.

Democrats were perfectly happy with the filibuster — or the mere threat of the filibuster — from 2017 to 2019, when the Democratic Senate minority blocked much of the Trump agenda.

Efforts to change time-honored rules for short-term gain are becoming more common.

Sanctuary cities nullify federal immigration law to empower illegal immigration. The nonenforcement of laws against rioting and looting has become common in big cities. The First Amendment is inert on college campuses.

The left should beware. Politics are volatile and often change. When Democrats destroy longstanding rules for short-term advantage, they may regret it when they too are in need of sober traditions and the U.S. Constitution.



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