Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Treason of the billionaires: History’s lessons

By Martin Hutchinson

This summer has seen a rush of billionaires and their companies donating to left-wing causes, or even giving extraordinary amounts of money to the Joe Biden campaign to defeat President Donald Trump. That is their right, of course. But I find it extraordinary that a majority of the world’s ultra-rich are supporting people whose policies would destroy the system by which they rose. It is worth thinking about why they do it.

It must be remembered that wealth, even self-made wealth, does not directly imply intelligence, especially in societies where social connections, for example through attendance at elite colleges, provide an important boost to those who have them. The plethora of private equity companies since 2000, for example, has made it possible for even quite stupid people to get funding for their start-ups, and thereby become billionaires if they get lucky, provided they have the right “old-school-tie” and express the appropriate “woke” political opinions.

There has always been a certain segment of new wealth whose political opinions diverged from those one would have expected. The new industrialists in Lord Liverpool’s Britain around 1820, for example, tended to be politically Radical – as if they were still the factory workers some (but not all) of them had started as. That led them to ally with the Whigs, whose main policy initiative was a Parliamentary Reform that actually narrowed the franchise, disfranchising many working-class voters (to be fair, the rich industrialists would have had the vote under both old and new franchises, once they became rich enough).

The result was to vote out the followers of Liverpool, who had given the country policies that led to a literally unprecedented prosperity through industrialization, and cement control in a collection of economically illiterate aristocratic Whigs. There were far more Peers in Earl Grey’s Whig Cabinet of 1830 than there had been in Liverpool’s Cabinets, and absolutely no industrialists or even bankers – Alexander Baring, the most able member of that 200-year banking dynasty, had been promised office by the Whigs, but was frozen out by the hyper-snobbish Grey, whereupon he joined the Tory opposition.

Economically, the result of Whig economic mismanagement from 1831 on was an “Engels Pause” that stopped economic expansion in its tracks through the entire 1830s and froze the living standards of working men until the middle 1840s. For working men, matters were made worse by the 1834 Poor Law, passed by the Whigs, that ended cash payments to the indigent and instituted the notorious “workhouses” designed on the principle of “less eligibility” to be less attractive to the poor than everything except starving in the gutter, an alternative which many of them chose.

Only one major industrialist had been Tory in Liverpool’s time – Sir Robert Peel, father of the prime minister and the richest man in Britain at his death in 1830. But then, there are exceptions to everything.

Coming closer to 2020, until the present generation, the self-made very wealthy have tended to lean to the right. The U.S. robber barons were mostly Republicans, certainly Rockefeller, Carnegie and J.P. Morgan were. In my own youth if a businessman was more than marginally to the left, you could be sure he was a crook and you should not do business with him. The classic example of this was Robert Maxwell, the Czech-born billionaire publisher and Labour MP, who drowned himself off his yacht and was found to have embezzled the contents of the Daily Mirror pension fund. When as an executive committee member of the London branch of a European bank I suggested we should reduce or eliminate our exposure to Maxwell, I was mocked – to the extent they took my views into account, it was the best thing I ever did for them!

The rule of thumb that any self-made billionaire leftist in a reasonably functioning capitalist economy must be a crook was based on two philosophical theorems. First, an honest billionaire would value the society and economic system under which he had risen, and so be generally in favor of capitalism, a system that would allow others to repeat his success. (In theory, he might be a very unpleasant individual who wanted to keep everyone else down, but in that case, he was short on moral fiber and might well be fiddling the accounts, too.) Second, an honest billionaire would want to keep taxes on his earnings and capital at reasonable levels, and hence would oppose anything to the left of moderate liberalism (in the American sense.)

There are three reasons why this equation does not work any more. First, the capitalist system no longer appears to work as well as it did; billionaires who have enriched themselves under today’s version of capitalism may have no clear idea of why they have become rich. Second, tax loopholes, havens and shelters have proliferated, to the extent that the very rich believe that higher taxes can be imposed only upon the “little people” and that they can avoid most of them. Third, the social returns from “virtue signaling” have become immense, and the social exclusion from failing to do so has become inexorable – nobody wants to be President Trump.

Since 1995, the Fed has set U.S. interest rates by fiat, far from the level a free market would dictate. Since 2008, the world’s other central banks have followed suit. This has caused a massive rise in asset prices, and the creation of an overwhelming volume of spurious private equity funds and hedge funds seeking to take advantage of those rising asset prices. In the real economy, it has brought declining productivity growth, new business formation and innovation in general. An additional factor has been globalization and the Internet, which have allowed billionaires to make spurious additional profits, sheltered from tax in havens, by outsourcing good American and European jobs to filthy sweatshops in the Third World.

Since today’s billionaires have benefited from the current system, they naturally favor it. However, that no longer drives them to favor capitalism, since the system is no longer truly capitalist. Instead, they favor low interest rates, “funny money” rising asset prices, outsourcing, massive imports of artificially cheap labor and ‘woke socialism.’ By such means, they hope to avoid serious competition from the next generation, who could in principle equally build a ziggurat of wealth on borrowed ultra-cheap money. Rectifying economic policy by stopping “indentured servitude” H1B and H2B visas and by “Volckerizing” the Fed or imposing a zero inflation target (which is actually in the Humphrey-Hawkins Act – the Fed just ignores the legislation) would impoverish billionaires – and open the roads to wealth for everybody else.

The tax problem can also be solved fairly easily. Billionaires suddenly go conservative when their own tax bills rise, as evidenced by the huge squawking from New York and California billionaires when the Trump administration rightly limited the deductibility of state and local taxes. Other loopholes include the taxation of private equity “carried interest” payments, ridiculously taxed as capital gains. However, the most egregious and expensive tax deduction for billionaires is that for charitable donations. As the Clinton family have demonstrated, that can be used to shelter vast amounts of income, licit or illicit, without any significant connection to genuine charity at all. Closing that loophole would make a huge number of billionaires “fly right” as well as closing down a plethora of spurious and tacky “charitable” events and fundraisers.

As for the social returns for virtue signaling, they are huge. They can be reduced by abolishing the charitable tax deduction, which would make much “virtue signaling” very expensive, and by raising interest rates, which would introduce a cadre of new uncouth billionaires who actually believed in capitalism. However, there are organizational changes to be made here, too – for example de-funding the ridiculous Business Roundtable, which pushes companies to devote their businesses to virtue signaling rather than profit maximization.

By defunding the most leveraged and spurious billionaires, closing their tax loopholes and reducing opportunities for virtue signaling, we can slowly return the moral outlook of the very rich to a proper respect for free markets and capitalism. Because of their wealth and power, that will make life better for all of us.


Tens of Thousands of Christians Converged on DC and Trashed the City

Did you hear about the large Christian gatherings in Washington, DC this weekend? Did you see the news reports about the mayhem? The looting? The vandalism? The calls to “Burn it down!”? Did you hear the speakers calling for acts of violence and destruction? Oh, you didn’t? That’s because tens of thousands of Christians did gather in DC this weekend, but they came to pray for the nation and repent for their sins.

The two main events were The Return, which began Friday night and ended Saturday night, and Franklin Graham’s prayer march, which was held from noon to 2:00 p.m. Saturday afternoon.

Both events attracted tens of thousands, and The Return was watched by a reported global audience of tens of millions. But there were no angry voices. No calls for violence. No fistfights. Or brawls. Or looting. Or shooting at police.
In fact, at The Return, where I participated on Saturday, there was hardly any police presence at all. It was not needed. I didn’t even see any counter-protesters.

Worship prevailed. Prayer prevailed. Humility prevailed. Repentance prevailed.

And while a constant theme of the event was the broken condition of America and the urgent need for repentance, that repentance started with the participants, with each of us. We, the followers of Jesus, have sinned and fallen short. We who are called to be light of the world and the salt of the earth have not lived up to our high and lofty calling.

That’s why The Return began its Saturday morning program with pastors and leaders asking for God’s mercy and confessing their sin. Repentance starts with us.

Significantly, Saturday was also the day when President Trump announced his nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to replace the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Who could have foreseen this? These events were planned months in advance, at which time no one had any idea that Justice Ginsburg would pass away, let alone pass away during this sacred season on the biblical calendar.

Even the timing of Trump’s announcement seemed propitious. As I tweeted, “So, Ruth Bader Ginsburg passes away at the beginning of the Jewish New Year, as the shofar blast is heard, & Amy Coney Barrett is announced as her replacement as shofars were being blasted at The Return event in DC, watched by 10s of millions globally. Coincidence?”

On this same day, Saturday, September 26, 2020, major prayer gatherings were held in the Philippines and other nations as well. (An Asian leader told me at The Return that three million Indonesian Christians participated in a prayer event just hours earlier).

But this is exactly what we must do. We are in the midst of a global pandemic, a global shutdown, a time of global shaking – and that means there nothing more important we can do than pray. All the more does this hold true in America, where deep divisions are literally tearing us apart.

But the goal of these gatherings is not to impress people. The goal is not to put on a performance and please the crowds. The goal is to get the attention of our Father in Heaven. Only He can turn the hearts of a nation. And only He can hold back His judgment and wrath.

In Jewish tradition, the constellation sign associated with Tishrei, the seventh (and current) month of the biblical calendar (but the first month of the traditional calendar), is a pair of scales, symbolizing the scales of justice.

As one Jewish website explains, “The symbol of the month of Tishrei is a pair of scales. How fitting are the scales of justice to this month! On the Day of Judgment, Rosh Hashanah, our good deeds and mitzvos (commandments) are weighed against our sins. If we have more mitzvos than sins, we are inscribed for another year of life.

Obviously, this is not a quantitative evaluation, that is, the number of offenses verses the number of good deeds. The judgment takes into account the quality of our deeds.”

Yet even with the very best quality of deeds, and even when we work our hardest, there is no way America could survive a test like this, weighing our good deeds against our bad deeds. How much weight does a single abortion carry, let alone tens of millions? How much weight does a single act of sex trafficking carry, let alone tens of thousands?

That’s why we plead for mercy. That’s why we repent so deeply. That’s why, in the synagogues, beginning Sunday night, Jewish prayers will focus on pleas for mercy and lengthy confessions of sin. There is no boasting of our own righteousness in the sight of a holy God.

That’s why these gatherings in DC, with minimal press coverage and without the drama of the protests and the riots, could well be the thing that saves the nation. And while the media may not have paid sufficient attention, we trust that God Himself did. That is what really matters.


Current idiocies

Seventeenth-century poet and intellect John Milton predicted “when language in common use in any country becomes irregular and depraved, it is followed by their ruin and degradation.”

Gore Vidal, his 20th-century intellectual successor, elaborated, saying: “As societies grow decadent, the language grows decadent, too. Words are used to disguise, not to illuminate.” Sloppy language permits people to get away with speaking and doing all manner of destructive nonsense without being challenged.

Let’s look at the concept of “white privilege,” the notion that white people have benefited in American history relative to, and at the expense of, “people of color.” It appears to be utter nonsense to suggest that poor and destitute Appalachian whites have white privilege. How can one tell if a person has white privilege? One imagines that the academic elite, who coined the term, refer to whites of a certain socioeconomic status such as living in the suburbs with the privilege of high-income amenities. But here is a question: Do Nigerians in the U.S. have white privilege? As reported by the New York Post this summer, 17% of all Nigerians in this country hold master’s degrees, 4% hold a doctorate, and 37% hold a bachelor’s degree, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2006 American Community Survey. By contrast, 19% of whites have a bachelor’s degree, 8% have master’s degrees, and 1% have doctorates.

What about slavery? Colleges teach our young people that the U.S. became rich on the backs of free black labor. That is utter nonsense. Slavery does not have a very good record of producing wealth. Think about it. Slavery was all over the South and outlawed in most of the North. I doubt that anyone would claim that the antebellum South was rich, and the slave-starved North was poor. The truth is just the opposite. In fact, the poorest states and regions of our country were places where slavery flourished — Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia — while the richest states and regions were those where slavery was outlawed: Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, and Massachusetts.

Speaking of holding people accountable for slavery, there is no way that Europeans could have captured millions of Africans. They had African and Arab help. There would not have been much black slavery in the U.S., and the western hemisphere in general, without Africans exchanging other Africans to European slave traders at the coast for guns, mirrors, cloths, foreign alcoholic beverages, and gold dust. Congressional Democratic lawmakers have called for a commission to study reparations, but I have not heard calls to hold the true perpetrators of American slavery accountable. Should we demand that congressional Democrats haul representatives of Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, and Muslim states before Congress to condemn them for their role in American slavery and demand they pay reparations?

Some of the greatest language mischief is related to terms such as racial “disparities,” “gaps,” and “disproportionality.” These terms are taken as signs of injustice that must be corrected. The median income of women is less than that of men. Black and Hispanic students are suspended and expelled at higher rates than white students. There are other race disparities and gaps all over the place. For example, blacks are 13% of the population but 80% of professional basketball players and 66% of professional football players, and on top of that, they’re some of the most highly paid players. To be consistent with leftist ideology, those numbers seem to suggest that there is some kind of injustice toward Asian, white, and Hispanic basketball and football players. But before we run off thinking that everything is hunky-dory for black players in football, how many times have you seen a black player kick an extra point in professional football?

What should be done to address these and other gross disparities? How can we make basketball, football, dressage and ice hockey, classical music concert attendance, not to mention incarceration, look more like America? In general, we should ignore disproportionality. There is no evidence, anywhere in the world, suggesting that people sort out in any activity according to their numbers in the general population.

The best thing that we can do is clean up our language. That will have the added benefit of straightening out our thinking so that we do not permit leftists to get away with making us feel guilty and believing in utter nonsense.


Donald Trump Gets His THIRD Nobel Prize Nomination

This month, two Arab Muslim states — Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) — normalized relations with the Jewish State of Israel, an earth-shattering diplomatic breakthrough long considered utterly unthinkable. Shortly before that, two Balkan countries put aside their historic enmity and normalized relations — and promised to open embassies in Jerusalem, recognizing the City of David as the capital of Israel. Each of these separate deals would be enough to get Trump in the history books, and the president has received three nominations for the Nobel Peace Prize in the wake of these tremendous accomplishments.

One Norwegian parliamentarian and one Swedish parliamentarian each nominated Trump for the Nobel Peace Prize. The Norwegian, Christian Tybring-Gjedde, highlighted the historic UAE peace deal while the Swede, Magnus Jacobsson, focused on the Serbia-Kosovo deal.

On Monday, Sky News reported on a third Nobel Prize nomination for Donald Trump, this time coming from four law professors in Australia. Law professor David Flint announced he was nominating Trump on the basis of the “Trump Doctrine.”

“He went ahead and negotiated against all advice, but he did it with common sense. He negotiated directly with the Arab states concerned and Israel and brought them together,” Flint told Sky News.

Flint described the Trump Doctrine as “something extraordinary,” based on “common sense” and “national interest.”

“What he has done with the Trump Doctrine is that he has decided he would no longer have America in endless wars, wars which achieve nothing but the killing of thousands of young Americans,” the professor argued. “So he’s reducing America’s tendency to get involved in any and every war.”

“The states are lining up, Arab and Middle-Eastern, to join that network of peace which will dominate the Middle-East,” Flint added. “He is really producing peace in the world in a way in which none of his predecessors did, and he fully deserves the Nobel Peace Prize.”

While President Barack Obama campaigned on peace and withdrawing from Iraq, he also sent U.S. troops into Syria. His withdrawal tragically enabled the growth of the Islamic State (ISIS).

President Trump also promised an end to America’s endless wars, and his approach has proven more successful. Trump invested heavily in the U.S. military, aiming to achieve peace through strength. He is scaling back U.S. troops in foreign lands. Trump has encouraged hydraulic fracturing and other energy developments that made America no longer reliant on Middle-Eastern oil.

For decades, countries like the UAE and Bahrain refused to recognize the Jewish state, standing in solidarity with the Palestinians and likely terrified of nearby Iran and its Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), which had a massive presence in the Middle East before Soleimani’s death.

Trump shook up the Middle East by moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, abandoning the disastrous Iran nuclear deal, and assassinating the terrorist Soleimani. Experts warned that these moves would spark a war, perhaps even a world war. Yet these historic events laid the groundwork for a massive transformation in Middle East diplomacy — a previously unimaginable transformation.

Indeed, it is difficult for Americans to realize just how monumental this diplomatic shift is. Before the signing of the Abraham Accords, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia announced they would open their skies to Israeli flights to the UAE. As part of its rapprochement with Israel, the UAE agreed to order hotels to serve Kosher foods in Abu Dhabi, delivering a powerful symbol of Jewish acceptance in a notoriously anti-Semitic part of the world.

In Europe, the Balkans are a notoriously fiery region, with centuries-long animosities sparking multiple wars, including World War I. The dueling Muslim and Christian empires of Turkey and Austria-Hungary wrestled to rule over ethnic groups that hated one another and religious minorities that proved a thorn in any ruler’s side. Yet Trump brought Muslim-majority Kosovo and Christian-majority Serbia together for a historic agreement that included promises to set up embassies in Jerusalem.

If Democratic nominee Joe Biden wins in November, he may undo much of this impressive progress by reinstating the Iran nuclear deal. Unfortunately, much of the legacy media has effectively buried news of these historic diplomatic developments. If Trump wins the Nobel Peace Prize, however, it would be impossible to deny his extraordinary successes.

President Barack Obama received a Nobel Peace Prize for his “extraordinary efforts to strengthen diplomacy and cooperation between people.” President Donald Trump should receive a Nobel Peace Prize for his extraordinary results at establishing historic diplomacy in the Middle East.

Sadly, it remains unlikely that the Nobel committee will honor Trump’s success in this arena. The Nobel committee is likely to get too stuck on “Orange Man Bad” to reward the orange man’s historic results in the same way it honored Obama’s efforts.



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.

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Democrats Are Truly Sick People

It’s times like this I regret not being able to really let loose with the language in this column because what the Democrats have become is truly disgusting. Every time you think they’ve gone as low as humanly possible, they break out a shovel. There is no bottom to hit when you will literally do anything to win. This election isn’t about power for the next few years. It’s about the type of existence we’re going to have from this election forward. Once you go over a cliff gravity always wins.

Individually, each piece of the progressive left is harmless; annoying but harmless. As more of them assemble and coordinate, they become increasingly dangerous. Protesters in the street are pointless and inconvenient but coupled with governors, mayors, and prosecutors who encourage and empower them, they embrace violence. When your moral compass is broken and the people charged with protecting citizens publicly announce they’re on your side, no matter what you do, or they won’t pursue charges against you if you’re arrested, what’s the downside to taking all you can from a Target or beating the hell out of someone?

The idea of a Joe Biden presidency is a scary proposition. He never really stood for much of anything, he simply parroted whatever positions were necessary for him to obtain power. Joe’s been the ultimate weathervane – a bandwagon jumper of the highest order. His whole government career seems built on avoiding ever having to get a real job and turning a blind eye to how his family has gotten rich off his name.

That Joe claims to have never talked to his son about how he’s repeatedly fallen ass-backward into lucrative jobs and piles of cash in industries he has no knowledge in strikes me as implausible. If your idiot, drug-addled son starts making more money per month than many small towns generate after he’s tossed out of the military for cocaine use, I’d hope you’d have some questions. And Hunter is just one of many Bidens who’ve hit above their weight class on the issue of income.

There’s a big difference between what’s legal and what’s right. Joe wraps himself in what’s legal because he’s been part of the establishment writing those laws for half a century, but that doesn’t make it right. For a guy who paints himself as holier than thou, when confronted with things he angrily deflects and changes the subject.

I’m not disgusted by his growing senility; he can’t do anything about that. I am bothered by the lengths to which his handlers will go and the lies they will tell to hide it. The claim that he’s not campaigning or giving interviews so he can do debate prep is laughable. Aside from being a lifeguard who enjoyed having little black kids pet his leg hair, Joe Biden has done nothing but politics his entire adult life. If he needs to study up on where he currently stands on the issues, he has no business driving a car let alone running the Executive Branch.

It’s not just the policies of the left, as evil and destructive as those are. It’s the searing hatred that guides them. President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett is described by former comedian Bill Maher as “a f*cking nut” for the crime of being a Catholic. Biden and Nancy Pelosi insist they are Catholics too, yet they are spared such remarks. Leftists have even started questioning Barrett’s two adopted children, and attacking her over the concept of interracial adoption. They are only a couple of steps away from demanding punishment for interracial marriage at this point.

A co-founder of the “Women’s March” calls the Daniel Cameron, the Attorney General of Kentucky, a “sell-out negro” for following the law in the Breonna Taylor case. BLM-ANTIFA leaders coordinate prepackaged riots over every manufactured fraud they can while media outlets give voice to every bit of racist vitriol they can find.

Are there better words to describe people willing to engage in these sorts of behaviors? Yes, there are, but they’re all obscene adjectives leading to more explicit nouns that I can’t write here. As this election nears, remind yourself what is at stake. More importantly, enlighten others, getable fence-sitters and uninspired bench warmers who’d either vote wrong or not at all. It’s going to take everyone ready to fight to win. We have to make up for the votes that will “accidentally” end up in a ditch or elsewhere, not to mention the ones which are simply frauds.

This is no time for measured responses. The “high road” in politics only gives you a nice view of your defeat. It’s time to sharpen your elbows and steel your resolve. It’s already been ugly, but it’s only going to get uglier. Be ready.


The Elgin Marbles are going nowhere: British Museum says controversial objects WON’T be removed from display after receiving warning from Government

The British Museum says that it has ‘no intention of removing controversial objects from display’ – after it received a warning letter from the Government over the issue.

In a leaked letter, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said that Government-funded museums and galleries risk losing taxpayer support if they remove artefacts.

The missive, sent to several institutions, said: ‘As publicly funded bodies, you should not be taking actions motivated by activism or politics.

‘The significant support that you receive from the taxpayer is an acknowledgement of the important cultural role you play for the entire country.’

He urged institutions to ‘continue to act impartially’, something he described as ‘especially important’ as the Government conducts its Comprehensive Spending Review – an apparent threat that funding could be at risk.

The British Museum said in a statement: ‘The British Museum has no intention of removing controversial objects from public display.

‘Instead, it will seek where appropriate to contextualise or reinterpret them in a way that enables the public to learn about them in their entirety.’

Mr Dowden’s letter, seen by the Sunday Telegraph, comes after a summer of cultural clashes over Britain’s colonial past.

Recipients included the British Museum, Tate galleries, Imperial War museums, National Portrait Gallery, National Museums Liverpool, the Royal Armouries, the Science Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum, and the British Library.

Mr Dowden said in the letter sent last week: ‘The Government does not support the removal of statues or other similar objects.

‘Historic England, as the Government’s adviser on the historic environment, have said that removing difficult and contentious parts of it risks harming our understanding of our collective past.’

The letter continued: ‘As publicly funded bodies, you should not be taking actions motivated by activism or politics.

‘The significant support that you receive from the taxpayer is an acknowledgement of the important cultural role you play for the entire country.

‘It is imperative that you continue to act impartially, in line with your publicly funded status, and not in a way that brings this into question.

‘This is especially important as we enter a challenging Comprehensive Spending Review, in which all government spending will rightly be scrutinised.’

The letter stated that ‘rather than erasing these objects, we should seek to contextualise or reinterpret them in a way that enables the public to learn about them in their entirety, however challenging this may be’.

It recently redisplayed its bust of Hans Sloane, its slave-owning founding father.

It was juxtaposed with objects to reflect the fact that Sloane’s collection was created in the context of the British Empire and the slave economy.

The Museum said it ‘continues to acknowledge Sloane’s radical vision of universal free public access to a national museum collection and the public benefit that is generated through the British Museum’.

A row over Britain’s colonial past erupted in June as protests saw a statue of the slave trader Edward Colston toppled in Bristol.

The bronze statue of the 17th century figure was pulled down with ropes, dragged through the streets and thrown into the harbour during a Black Lives Matter protest.

The letter comes after well-known music venue, named after 17th century slave trader Edward Colston, was recently renamed Bristol Beacon.

A statue of Winston Churchill in Parliament Square, Westminster, was also daubed with graffiti amid wider calls for controversial figures to have their statues taken down.

Boris Johnson hit out at the demands to remove statues at the time as he said ‘we cannot now try to edit or censor our past’.

The Prime Minister said the UK ‘cannot pretend to have a different history’ and that the statues ‘teach us about our past, with all its faults’.

Earlier this month the Commons Leader Jacob Rees-Mogg blasted the National Trust for not realising ‘how wonderful’ Churchill was after it included his home on its ‘woke’ list of houses with historic links to slavery.

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.


Minneapolis city councilors BACKTRACK on promise to dismantle police department and say the pledge was ‘up for interpretation’

On June 7 the council released a pledge to dismantle the Minneapolis police department and replace it with a new community support and outreach system following the May 25 death of George Floyd.

However, that effort was stalled in early August when the city’s Charter Commission voted to pause the amendment to dissolve and replace the police force and voted to take 90 more days to review it.

Council members have revealed that they didn’t state their intentions clearly and it caused confusion among officials, activists and the public.

Councilor Phillipe Cunningham said the language in the pledge was ‘up for interpretation’ and that even after the pledge was released, ‘it was very clear that most of us had interpreted that language differently, according to New York Times report.

Councilor Andrew Johnson, one of the nine members who supported the pledge in June, said that he meant the words ‘in spirit’.

Council president Lisa Bender said: ‘I think our pledge created confusion in the community and in our wards.’

Elected officials have interpreted the pledge differently, some believing defunding the police means to redirect some money in the police budget to social programs and others thinking it means creating a police-free future.

The move to dismantle the police has faced significant legislative hurdles as it has been rejected by the city’s mayor, a plurality of residents in public opinion polls, and the city’s Charter Commission.

Previous hopes to have the move to dissolve the department on this November’s ballots have been dashed.

Now taking its place is incremental reforms for the police department.

Since the May 25 killing of Floyd, Minneapolis has banned chokeholds, enacted new de-escalation requirements and changed reporting measures for the use of force.

City Council member Linea Palmisano, who was one of the three councilors who did not take the pledge, admonished her colleagues for rushing the pledge saying they ‘have gotten used to these kinds of progressive purity tests.’

But some activists still believe that pledge should seek to completely abolish the police department.

‘What kind of violence are we going to experience over the next year? When these decisions a re made on a political level, they have human consequences,’ Miski Noor, an organizer with Black Visions Collective, said.

‘I think the initial announcement created a certain level of confusion from residents at a time when the city really needed that stability,’ Mayor Jacob Frey, who refused to support the pledge, said.

‘I also think that the declaration itself meant a lot of different things to a lot of different people — and that included a healthy share of activists that were anticipating abolition,’ he added.

In the wake of Floyd’s death and national uproar against police brutality and systemic racism, gun violence has surged in the embattled city this summer.

Some communities are worried of how the policing system will continue to function in the city.

Cathy Spann, a community activist in North Minneapolis, an area home to many of the city’s black residents, says that black and brown communities are paying the price for the political stall.

She is in favor of adding more police officers on the streets.

‘They didn’t engage black and brown people. And something about that does not sit right with me. Something about saying to the community, “We need to make change together” but instead you leave this community and me unsafe,’ she said.

Minneapolis has a long history with police violence and incremental changes within the force.

But to many reforms like body cameras and civilian oversight aren’t enough.

From the get-go the pledge to dismantle the police department had problems, including a lack of a transition plan.

On a policy level, the councilors did not have the unilateral power to end the city’s police department as some residents believed.

The national public attention only heightened the pressure.

‘I was surprised and was overwhelmed by it,’ Councilor Cunningham said. ‘A big lesson learned for me was to be mindful of the language and words we used and how it can be interpreted.’

The agenda to dismantle the police was further polarized by President Donald Trump and Republicans who pinned the move to defund police forces as a Democratic agenda in a bid to win over suburban voters.

However, prominent blue figures like Biden joined Mayor Frey in rejecting such proposals.

The City Council made the pledge, passed a provision to ask voters to remove the police department from the city’s charter and place public safety duties under a new department with an unspecified structure, but there were no public hearings on the matter.

Dave Bicking, board member of Communities United Against Police Brutality, a grassroots group in Minneapolis that was founded in 2000, did not back the pledge.

His group supports a smaller police force with more limited responsibilities.

‘I think the City Council and the people they work with pretty much knew that this was a nonstarter. But it would get them off the hook and give them some time until things blow over,’ Bicking said of the charter amendment.


British Army hero accused of drowning an Iraqi teenager in 2003 is cleared of wrongdoing following ’17-year witch-hunt’

A decorated Army Major vexatiously accused of drowning an Iraqi teenager at the time of the Anglo-US invasion has been cleared of any wrongdoing following a 17-year witch-hunt.

Major Robert Campbell, 47, was investigated on bogus claims that he forced suspected looter Saeed Radhi Shabram Wawi Al-Bazooni, 19, into a river at gunpoint in Basra in May 2003.

Eyewitnesses had claimed that Maj Campbell and colleagues from the 32 Royal Engineer Regiment caused Saeed Shabram’s death after he slipped below the water and failed to resurface.

The incident sparked an inquiry into the British Army hero, who even returned his medals to the Queen in 2018 in disgust at the way he had been treated by the Ministry of Defence.

But a judge has now ruled that the allegations against Maj Campbell were based on lies, collusion on the part of Iraqi civilians and a ‘possible conspiracy’ to pervert the course of justice.

It is the latest of more than 4,000 cases brought by disgraced solicitor Phil Shiner and his Public Interest Lawyers against British soldiers to have collapsed because of a lack of evidence.

In her report published yesterday, Baroness Hallett decided there was ‘no reliable evidence upon which it would be proper to conclude that (Maj Campbell) or any other British solider pushed or forced (Munem) Auda and Shabram into the water’.

She added: ‘It is most likely that they jumped or fell into the water in the process of trying to escape what they believed would be dire punishment for looting.’

The report by the Iraq Fatalities Investigations (IFI) unit said Maj Campbell and a comrade leapt into the water to try and rescue Shabram but ‘he sank and did not surface’.

Royal Military Police knew that witnesses had lied in the aftermath of Shabram’s death but they failed to shield the soldiers from a 17-year inquiry.

Baroness Hallett rubbished claims that the Iraqi men were victims of an informal punishment known as ‘wetting,’ in which British soldiers were alleged to have put looters in the water as a form of degrading punishment.

‘If there was a practice of wetting looters amongst some members of (the Black Watch Battle Group), there is no evidence that it was widespread or that (Maj Campbell) or any of the soldiers under his command had been involved in it or knew of it,’ the report said.

‘There was good reason for (Maj Campbell) to take the two men to the water. British soldiers had gone to the scene to wash their vehicles and they were near the water’s edge.

‘(Maj Campbell) wanted to get Auda and Shabram to the water where his men were and where he believed he may secure the services of an interpreter, who was fishing.

‘There is not therefore anything suspicious in his moving Auda and Shabram towards the water and nothing to link an alleged practice of wetting to this case.’

Baroness Hallett also rejected claims of a cover-up, adding: ‘No evidence of a cover up on the part of the British soldiers has ever been found.’

Maj Campbell yesterday said he is ‘relieved’ that he has ‘finally been exonerated’ after the 17-year witch-hunt ‘pushed him to the brink’ and ‘nearly did for him’, according to his friends.

But he added that he is angry that it took ‘eight investigations, 17 years and destroyed my career’, and furiously denounced the Army and MoD for ‘abandoning’ him.

General Lord Richard Dannatt, the former Head of the British Army, said that Maj Campbell’s life and career ‘had been ruined’ by relentless investigations.

‘It should never have taken 17 years to get to this point,’ Gen Dannatt told The Daily Telegraph. ‘I have always believed that the story that he told me was true: A young Iraqi fell into the canal and he and two men did their best to rescue him.

‘I can’t believe why a Royal Engineer officer and two NCOs would be so stupid as to push an Iraqi into a canal and watch him drown. It has ruined Rob’s life and it has ruined the NCOs lives as well.’

The decorated Army Major, who suffers from PTSD and depression, has now alleged that there was a concerted Government plot to put him on trial for war crimes in Iraq.

Speaking to The Daily Telegraph, Maj Campbell claims that the Government blocked his promotion, tampered with his records and effectively ‘erased’ him from the regiment.

Veterans Minister Johnny Mercer said in a statement: ‘My thanks go to Baroness Hallett for compiling this report, which concludes there is not enough reliable evidence of any British soldier contributing to the tragic death of Saeed Shabram.

‘I truly hope these findings will bring some closure and reassurance to the family and veterans involved in this process.

‘Nobody wants to see service personnel or veterans facing extensive reinvestigations into the same incident, and our Overseas Operations Bill will help provide greater certainty and protections in the future.’

In an interview in 2018, Maj Campbell described the impact the inquiries – including an investigation for possible manslaughter – had had on him.

He said: ‘I fully accounted for myself in my statement in 2004 and it had been examined and pored over and dissected by prosecutors and police forces and investigations and I don’t feel I need to justify myself any further.

‘What I want more than anything is a good night’s sleep and I haven’t had one for 15 years.’

Mr Mercer had previously has previously condemned the MoD for being far too quick to believe false claims.



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.

Monday, September 28, 2020

Black Man Murders Four-Year-Old White Child in Targeted Attack

If there can be huge outrage and retribution for white police killings of blacks, surely there should be huge retribution for black killings of whites. The justice system is race-blind or it is not

I grieve for the innocent child in this case: killed by the hatred against whites generated by the Left. But the Left have so much blood on their hands that this is nothing to them

Given my druthers, I would burn the assailant in this case at the stake

The media reacts quickly and with righteous indignation when a black person is shot by police, or by someone white, no matter what the facts of the case are.

But far too often, even in the most heinous of cases, when the perpetrator is black and the victim or victims happen to be white, the headlines and reporting are not anywhere near the same.

We have seen it in the case of 5-year-old Cannon Hinnant, who was executed by a black man in August, and we are seeing it again in the death of a 4-year-old white child in a targeted attack by a black man, WKBN reported.

The shooting occurred in Struthers, Ohio, on Monday at around 1:55 a.m., Four adults were also shot and are hospitalized: Andre Stephon McCoy, Jr., 20, Yarnell Green Jr., 30, Cassandra Marsicola, 20, and Alexis Schneider, 22, of Struthers.

The suspect, 24-year-old Kimonie Bryant, turned himself in to police after a massive manhunt began to find him.

The father of the deceased 4-year-old child spoke at a press conference prior to the suspect turning himself in.

“Rowan was the sweetest boy,” he said. “’Rowan was the best. He is so young. He didn’t deserve any of this… buddy, I’m so sorry for you, buddy. I love you.”

“Just be a man,” David Sweeney said as he held a photo of his son. “You took my son from me. He was my baby boy. You took him because you’re sick.”

“You took my son from me…you can live with that for the rest of your life,” he said before the name of the suspect was announced.

Authorities believe Bryant gained entry to the home via the front door and started shooting in the living room prior to fleeing on foot, Fox News reported.

One of the male victims was hit with two shots in the back of the head while another was struck two times in the back.

The women, who were described as friends, were hit in their legs and have been cooperating with the police in the investigation.

On the 9-1-1 phone call after the shooting, a woman is heard screaming, “My son is dead” as the person on the phone pleaded for help.

Neighbors reported hearing between five and eight gunshots but said that they did not get a good look at the suspect.

“This is Struthers, and this kind of stuff doesn’t usually happen. He was an innocent 4-year-old boy who deserves justice and deserves to be remembered,” neighbor Eric Rebic said.

What remains sad is how silent the mainstream media has largely been on the story. Imagine if the suspect was white and the four-year-old was black.

Imagine the media reporting on it, the protests, the riots and the looting, and the chants of “burn it down.”

But that did not happen for Hinnant and it is not happening for Sweeney. We often hear that black lives matter, and they do, but does the media believe anyone else’s life matters?


British teachers are told not to push tomboys to change their gender just because of the way they like to dress or play

Tomboys must not be encouraged to think they should change sex just because of the way they like to dress or play, schools have been told.

The guidelines come in new Government instructions for teachers talking to children about transgender issues. The move has led to calls for controversial transgender charities such as Mermaids to be barred from any role in education.

It comes after Equalities Minister Liz Truss announced that the Government has rejected calls from trans-rights campaigners to allow adults to change their legal gender at will.

Ministers have now followed up by telling schools to reject teaching materials that encourage children to question their gender if they like clothes and toys usually associated with the opposite sex.

NHS figures show the number of girls seeking to change gender and become boys has risen sharply in recent years. Some experts believe it is because tomboys who do not feel comfortable with stereotypically female clothing and activities are being pushed to believe they are ‘born in the wrong body’.

The new schools guidance has been hailed as a major breakthrough by parents who fear that trans groups are encouraging children to change gender because of the clothes they choose to wear or the toys they play with.

‘You should not reinforce harmful stereotypes, for instance by suggesting that children might be a different gender based on their personality and interests or the clothes they prefer to wear,’ the Department for Education advice tells schools. ‘Resources used in teaching about this topic must always be age-appropriate and evidence-based.

‘Materials which suggest that non-conformity to gender stereotypes should be seen as synonymous with having a different gender identity should not be used and you should not work with external agencies or organisations that produce such material.’

That has focused attention on the work of Mermaids, a prominent trans-rights charity that provides training for public sector bodies.

One Mermaids training course last year involved a 12-point ‘gender spectrum’, ranging from a Barbie doll in a pink dress at the ‘female’ side to a GI Joe in military fatigues at the opposite, ‘male’ end.

The new guidance has been issued following a lengthy campaign by groups that question the medical transition of children.

Stephanie Davies-Arai, of Transgender Trend, said: ‘This is what we have been calling for. We are very glad to see this guidance.’

The Safe Schools Alliance said the guidance should mean Mermaids is now blocked from any role in training teachers or advising schools.

It said: ‘This guidance makes clear that Mermaids are not suitable to train teachers and schools. All policies that they or organisations partnered with them have consulted on, must now be reviewed.’

Mermaids told The Mail on Sunday that while the charity offers training for teachers, it does not offer classroom talks and lesson materials for pupils in England and Wales, and so would be unaffected by the rule changes that were announced last week.

A spokesman said: ‘Contrary to a great deal of speculation online, we do not suggest that toy and clothing choices are a sole or primary signifier of a child’s gender identity.

‘However, like any child, trans children will sometimes express part of who they are by choosing particular toys and clothes.

‘We accept this point requires careful and subtle expression and we’re working hard to improve the clarity of our messaging.’


Belarus (“White Russia”) impresses again

See my previous comments on Belarus

What can we learn about lockdowns from the country whose dictator told them to fight Covid by drinking vodka?

As the sun slid from the evening sky over Minsk, clusters of people thronged the imposing entrance of the Bolshoi Theatre of Belarus clutching their tickets for the ballet.

Many had dressed up to attend one of the city’s landmark buildings, a legacy of the Stalin era that was inspired by Roman amphitheatres.

‘We don’t want our theatres closed,’ said Darya, an elegant 25-year-old heading in to enjoy the performance of The Creation Of The World with friends Igor and Nadia.

‘You need art to live a full life, despite anything else that is happening in the world.’

Minutes later, I watched in the imposing auditorium as the large orchestra struck up, five dancers appeared and 800 people sat back to enjoy the show.

Darya is right about the ability of art and culture to lift spirits in dark times. Yet in Britain, as in other parts of the world, theatre doors remain shut with live entertainment among the sectors hit hardest by pandemic.

But things are rather different in Belarus.

Alexander Lukashenko, the last dictator in Europe who has ruled the country for 26 years, swept aside fears over the disease and scoffed at the concept of lockdowns.

He claimed the planet was being swept by ‘psychosis’, suggested his people drink vodka to ‘poison the virus’ and poked fun at the idea of protective measures.

The nation’s professional football league played on through the pandemic’s peak as all Europe’s other leagues closed down and countries went into lockdown.

Yet this maverick despot’s bizarre stance means this little-known land – a strange hangover from Soviet times, with huge state-run factories and KGB agents prowling the streets – offers an intriguing glimpse of what happens if a state leaves Covid unchecked.

For the country has ignored dire warnings of doom from some experts but, curiously, death rates from the virus do not seem all that different from places that imposed strict lockdowns.

‘The measures in Belarus, like in Sweden, were diametrically opposed to your country but the numbers seem similar, which is weird,’ said one senior epidemiologist.

Their fatality figures may actually be significantly better than in the UK – whether through good luck or the measures taken by alarmed citizens on their own.

At the very least, Belarus offers an unusual perspective on the pandemic, and although this secretive nation currently in political turmoil could not be more different from a serene Scandinavian democracy, it has shared Sweden’s avoidance of a lockdown. Lukashenko’s daft actions included denying the existence of viruses as death numbers began to mount from the disease. ‘Do you see any of them flying around?’ he asked in March. ‘I don’t see them either.’

The strongman disdained border controls, predicted the pandemic would pass by Easter, said the first victim was responsible for their own death and refused to cancel a presidential election or events involving elderly veterans to mark the end of the Second World War.

‘It’s better to die standing than to live on your knees,’ he said at one point.

Later, having caught the disease himself, he claimed it was planted on him and carried on ignoring suggestions adopted elsewhere to slow the spread, apart from urging social distancing. ‘In no case stay at home,’ he said last month. ‘Move more in the air, run, jump, play sport.’

Lukashenko’s refusal to accept medical reality fuelled furious protests that followed his blatant theft of last month’s presidential election. Big demonstrations have led to thousands of arrests, brutal beatings and horrifying torture by his security squads.

Dimitri Ivanovich, a data analyst whose mother is recovering from Covid in hospital after two weeks of intensive care, said people had died due to misinformation. ‘There were no public health measures, no help for businesses. People were left alone with the virus.’

Several people I met told me the dictator’s stance starkly exposed his contempt for citizens. ‘Society is more solid than ever before and it started with Covid,’ said Victoria Fedorova, chairwoman of a leading human rights group.

She believes this defiance began with people joining forces to raise funds to buy protective gear for frontline staff. One medical insider told me that 30 doctors have died from the disease; another said all those in his large hospital near Minsk caught the virus.

Officially, there have been just 813 Covid deaths and 77,289 cases in this country of 9.5 million people – among the lowest rates in Europe. State-controlled media bragged of success in contrast with ‘sadder’ data from nations such as Britain with fatality levels about seven times higher.

A far more reliable figure emerged after the government supplied data to the United Nations that revealed 5,605 excess deaths between April and June, when the pandemic peaked, compared to the previous year.

Doctors confirmed such figures. Mikita Salavei, associate professor in the infectious diseases department at Belarusian State Medical University, estimated there have been 8,000 deaths from the virus as the second wave emerges. ‘We are very similar to Sweden in terms of cases and fatalities,’ he said. ‘Our results are not any worse than several other countries.’

Indeed, they may be significantly better than the UK. England and Wales recorded 55,529 excess deaths between April and June, almost two-thirds higher per head of population than the figures from Belarus.

International comparisons are tricky with this disease. There are differences in data collation. Britain is one of the world’s most globalised nations whereas Belarus is more isolated and has much lower population density, despite Minsk’s crowded suburbs .

The two countries have similar proportions of elderly but Belarus has few care homes and far more hospital beds per head of population – a legacy of its Soviet heritage. Yet estimates based on the infamous Imperial College, London, modelling in March that panicked the British Government into lockdown warned of a total of 66,800 Covid deaths in Belarus by the end of next month without any preventative measures.

It predicted a possible 32,000 deaths by October if only mild actions were taken to slow the spread of infection, and 15,000 fatalities if there was strong suppression of social contacts. But the current death toll is actually only about half that.

Officials have found it hard to act independently in this autocratic state, yet some preventative tactics were imposed by local leaders. ‘No one called it “quarantine” but measures were taken,’ said one epidemiologist.

Dzmitry Markelau, a Minsk surgeon, put it more bluntly. ‘The president was stupid in what he was saying. So everything was left to us. Hospitals were repurposed to focus on Covid and people around the elderly started wearing masks.’

Alarmed citizens also started taking their own action. This is a nation with a thriving digital community plus well-grounded suspicions over state duplicity after suffering dreadfully from the Chernobyl nuclear disaster.

Many stories I heard in Belarus were similar to elsewhere in Europe: shortages of protective gear, concerns over surging cancer cases after hospitals were retooled to focus on Covid, and economic carnage.

Bars, beauty salons, cafes and shops all told me that although they stayed open, their takings crashed as people stayed away when infections started soaring in April, and they have not fully recovered. ‘People stopped going on the streets and eating out,’ said Artsiom, a manager in a small chain of pizza restaurants that had to dismiss some staff. His lunchtime sales still struggle as people work from home.

The nation’s footballers may have played on after being told to wash their hands, but fans stayed away. Dynamo Brest filled its stands with mannequins in club colours after attendances plummeted from 10,000 to just 800.

Yet there seem few signs of fear about the disease, especially with mass protests each weekend and most people not wearing masks – as shown by the Bolshoi Theatre’s reopening earlier this month. It closed in April after many performers, returning from events abroad, caught the disease, although they continued rehearsals while halving salaries. ‘We are like happy kids to be open again,’ said Tatiana Alexandrova, head of marketing.

Berlin, a leading music venue in a dingy Minsk basement, was shut down briefly by officials. ‘They closed us because of coronavirus but after a week they did not seem to care so we reopened,’ said director Pavel Yurtsevich. His venue has been hurt by the lack of foreign bands on tour but was preparing for a heavy metal festival on Friday night.

‘We see the UK with its lockdown but it did not seem to solve anything,’ he said. ‘It is all about individual responsibility, and as employers we have responsibility for our staff.’


Another CPS nightmare

In June 2017, Vanessa Peoples’s two-year-old son wandered off during a family picnic and, though he was quickly found, it wasn’t before a stranger called 911 and reported her.

One month later, a CPS worker visited her home in Aurora, Colorado, and called police when nobody answered the door because she feared the children had been left alone, according to the magazine Reason.

Peoples was home but hadn’t heard the knocks, which officers said was ‘concerning.’

When Peoples’s mother and a police officer got into an altercation – and Peoples tried to intervene – they ended up pinning her on the ground and tying her hands and legs together.

Although the case was eventually settled out of court, the incident ended in a dislocated arm for Peoples and ongoing nightmares for her two children.

According to Reason, Peoples, who is a nursing student, and her children – then ages two and four – were at a family picnic in a park in June 2017.

When a cousin left, the younger son allegedly followed the cousin to the car.

A pedestrian noticed the toddler, who appeared to be unattended, and grabbed him.

That’s when Peoples reportedly walked over, having noticed that her child was missing, and demanded the passerby return the child.

‘I’m telling her: “Ma’am, that’s my son,”‘ Peoples told Reason.

‘She’s refusing to let go of him and talking on the phone. I didn’t know she was talking to the police.’

When police arrived, they issued a Peoples a ticket for child neglect and told her a CPS caseworker would be following up.

One month later, when a caseworker called to conduct a well-being check, no one answered her knocks at the door, Reason reported.

Peoples claims she didn’t hear the knocks because she was downstairs doing laundry after having given her children baths.

When the caseworker saw a child inside the house, she feared the youngsters had been left alone and called police.

According to the police report, viewed by Reason, officers found the door unlocked and announced that they were entering the residence, and drew their guns.

‘As I was going up the stairs, the sergeant has a gun pointed at my head, saying: “This is the Aurora Police Department!”‘ Peoples told Reason.

Cops asked Peoples why she didn’t answer the door, to which she replied that she is hard of hearing in one ear – which police noted as a ‘concern.’

When Peoples’s mother arrived at the house, that’s when the situation escalated with the mother and an officer arguing.

Bodycam footage shows Peoples walking over and, when an officer tells her to stand back repeatedly, she replies: ‘No, that’s my mom. I don’t have to stand back’ and attempted to walk past him.

The incident then turns violent and the footage shows the officer putting a hand on Peoples’s throat and throwing her to the ground.

She is pinned down and restrained with hobble handcuffs, which is when the hands and legs are each individually handcuffed and attached together

During this confrontation, the 25-year-old is yelling: ‘I can’t breathe!’ and calling for her mother.

‘You know how you tie a pig upside down and his feet are hanging from the stick? That’s how they carried me,’ Peoples told Reason.

The police asked her if she needed medical attention and, when paramedics arrived, Peoples was transported to the hospital.

This when where doctors told her that, during the incident, her shoulder had been dislocated. She was given a sling, ibuprofen and ice – and then booked.

After being bailed out by her mother, she took a plea deal and pleaded guilty to charges of child endangerment.

Reason reported that the plea allowed her to avoid jail time, but she also needed to pay a fine and take parenting classes.

Peoples hired Erica Grossman, a civil rights attorney, to sue police for dislocating her shoulder while she was being arrested.

The lawsuit was settled before it was even filed, for an undisclosed amount, but Grossman says this is going to leave a permanent scar with the families.

‘They were using a level of military force like they’re at a huge crime scene instead of a child [well-being] check,’ Grossman told Reason.

‘They did this in front of her two children without a hint of concern about the trauma the children would experience, in the name of making sure their mother was attentive enough.’

Peoples says her children currently experience nightmares about police officers taking her or her husband away in handcuffs.

‘The cops forgot we were human,’ Peoples told the magazine.



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, September 27, 2020

The Rogan phenomenon

The following article tries to analyse the amazing audience appeal of Joe Rogan. I also report initially below some comments by a fellow psychologist which also analyse Rogan:

“You pointed out to me that Malcom Turnbull identified with conservatives but was psychologically a lefty. Joe Rogan is the opposite, he identifies as a liberal but psychologically he is conservative/libertarian.

Before you pointed out the reason for Malcom Turnbull’s psychological incongruence, I could not understand it. But since then I have noticed similar psycho-political incongruence in many people. Many are not aware of the true psychology of the political left, right, conservative, libertarian,… and are barely conscious of their own values and personality inclinations, and so many misidentify themselves as being left or right when they are in fact the other.

Although Joe Rogan claims to be a lefty (US liberal) he is disliked by the left because he is masculine, is weight trained and practices martial arts and archery, he hunts and kills game, he believes in individual freedom and accountability, he believes people should be free to pursue their own passions, and be free to defend themselves.

Politically he may call himself a liberal, but psychologically he is a conservative/libertarian, and he has not realised it. Lefties notice it though. That is why they dislike him.

He chooses all sorts of people to interview, from left and right, religious, atheists, politicians, scientists, sports people, martial artists, comedians, outdoorsmen, inventors and innovators, criminals,… etc, etc.

He is a bit of a chameleon, reflecting the character of his guests, so he draws them out to be themselves. And the long chats which go for 2 or 3 hours are mostly very relaxed and casual, so the subject matter gets explored very gently and thoroughly, and the listener gets to understand the topic.

Naturally some of his guests are not interesting at all, but some are very interesting

JOE ROGAN HAS AMASSED one of the largest and most influential media platforms in U.S. politics, if not the single most influential. The value of his program was quantified in May when the streaming service Spotify paid a reported $100 million for the exclusive rights to broadcast his podcast.

As one illustrative example of his reach, NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden appeared on Rogan’s program six days ago, and the episode has already been viewed more than 5 million times on YouTube alone. The first time Snowden appeared on his program was last October, and that episode, just on YouTube, has more than 16 million views. To put that in perspective: The top-rated cable news programs are the Fox News shows hosted by Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity, and they average between 4 to 5 million viewers, or one-fourth the number of views Rogan’s discussion with Snowden generated.

Rogan is rarely discussed in mainstream political and media circles, which raises its own questions. Why does someone who packs such a big punch in terms of audience size and influence receive so much less media attention than, say, cable news hosts with audience sizes far smaller than his? Presidential candidates certainly recognize Rogan’s importance: All of the major Democratic candidates, according to him, requested to appear on his show. (The only ones he invited on were Bernie Sanders, Tulsi Gabbard, and Andrew Yang.)

Rogan was in the news this week after President Donald Trump favorably responded to a guest’s suggestion that Rogan host a four-hour, sit-down presidential debate between the two candidates. The mere suggestion that someone like Rogan could host as prestigious and high-minded an event as a presidential debate prompted condescending scorn from establishment media precincts.

Prior to that, one of the few times Rogan was discussed in mainstream political circles was when outrage among establishment Democrats ensued after Sanders touted a quasi-endorsement from Rogan. The argument was that Rogan’s views are so repellent, bigoted, and anathema to liberalism that no Democratic candidate should be associated with him (this anger was shared by some of Sanders’ own supporters including, reportedly, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez).

WHAT IS IT, by the standards of U.S. political and media orthodoxy, that makes Rogan so radioactive? In March, billionaire and former NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg — who spoke at the 2004 GOP Convention in the middle of the Iraq War and war on terror to urge the reelection of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, and who presided over and repeatedly defended the racially disparate “stop and frisk” police practice — endorsed Joe Biden for president, and Biden not only accepted but celebrated the endorsement, praising Bloomberg in the process:

What are the standards that make Michael Bloomberg an acceptable endorsement to tout but not Joe Rogan, given that the billionaire three-term mayor and former Republican has taken far worse positions and done far more damage to far more people than the podcaster could ever dream of doing?

That question is even more compelling when it comes to the Biden/Harris campaign’s touting of the endorsement of former Republican Gov. Rick Snyder of Michigan, widely blamed for the criminally negligent lack of clean drinking water which plagued primarily African American residents of Flint, Michigan, for many years. Not only did the Biden campaign accept Snyder’s endorsement, but they issued a press release trumpeting it:

What makes all of this more confounding is that Rogan is a fairly basic political liberal on almost every issue: He believes in the need for greater social spending for the nation’s poor and working class, opposes war and militarism, favors drug legalization, is adamantly pro-choice and pro-LGBT rights, and generally adheres to liberal orthodoxies on standard political debates. That is why he was so fond of Bernie Sanders and Tulsi Gabbard, and why Andrew Yang — whose signature issue was the universal basic income — was one of the few candidates he deemed worth talking to.

The objections typically raised to Rogan concern his questioning of some of the very recent changes brought about by trans visibility and equality, particularly asking whether it is fair for trans women who have lived their entire lives and entered puberty as biological men to compete against cis women in professional sports (a question also asked — and even answered in the negative — by LGBT sports pioneer Martina Navratilova, among many others), and whether young children are emotionally and psychologically equipped to make permanent choices about gender reassignment therapies and gender dysphoria.

If embracing and never questioning the full panoply of trans advocacy is a prerequisite to being permitted in decent society, I seriously doubt many prominent Democratic politicians will pass that test (even Kamala Harris, from San Francisco and the very blue state of California, has a very mixed record on trans rights). Moreover, though polling data is sparse, the data that is available show that there is still much work to do in this area: Only a small minority of Americans believe it is fair to allow trans women to participate in female professional sports.

If the standard is that anyone who even entertains debates over the maximalist and most controversial questions in this very new and evolving social movement is to be cast out as radioactive, liberalism and the Democratic Party will be a very small group. It will also have to proceed without the vast majority of political leaders whom they currently follow. Even on this issue of trans rights, Rogan’s views are in accord with the standard Democratic Party view: He advocates full legal protection and dignity for the right of trans people to live with their gender respected.

The other critique centers on Rogan’s willingness to invite on his show various pundits with far-right views. That’s a bizarre criticism of someone who purposely hosts a program designed to foster dialogue with people across the political spectrum. After all, if one employs the blatantly irrational tactic of attributing to Rogan the views of all his guests, he would be simultaneously everything and nothing.

But again, this is a standard which few if any Democratic Party leaders could meet. Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and Bernie Sanders all went on Bill O’Reilly’s Fox News show, while Rep. Adam Schiff has appeared on Tucker Carlson’s program. Speaking with people with differing views is called politics and journalism, and if one is decreed radioactive for interacting with people with bad views, few will survive that standard. (Liberals also point to the fact that Rogan said he could not vote for Biden over Trump, but that was not on ideological grounds but based on the same narrative that Democratic political and media elites spent all of last year disseminating: namely, that Biden’s cognitive decline makes him unfit for the job.)

While Rogan is politically liberal, he is — argues former Obama 2008 campaign strategist and Rogan listener Shant Mesrobian — culturally conservative, by which he does not mean that Rogan holds conservative views on social issues (again, he is pro-choice and pro-LGBT rights). He means that Rogan exudes culturally conservative signals: He likes MMA fighting, makes crude jokes, hunts, and just generally fails to speak in the lingo of the professional managerial class and coastal elites. And it is those cultural standards, rather than political ones, that make Rogan anathema to elite liberal culture because, Mesrobian argued in a viral Twitter thread, liberals care far more about proper culture signaling than they do about the much harder and more consequential work of actual politics.

As Rogan’s platform grows, it is worthwhile to understand his appeal, his audience, and what he is doing that is new and different to attract such a large following. But it is also very worth examining the reaction to him by the political and media class because in that reaction, one finds many revealing attributes about how they think, what they value, and the priorities that they actually venerate.


Innocent Until Proven a Trump Supporter

During a BLM “peaceful protest” in Omaha, Nebraska, on May 30 (over George Floyd’s dying of a heart attack while in police custody in Minneapolis), James Scurlock was peacefully protesting by breaking into an architecture firm — hoisting an office chair and hurling it into two computer monitors, then ripping a phone from a desk and throwing it against the wall, as his friend shattered another monitor — all of which was captured on video.

Nearby, Jake Gardner, an Iraq War veteran and Trump supporter, was keeping watch over the two bars he owned, The Hive and The Gatsby, aided by his 68-year-old father and a security guard. The peaceful protesters soon made their way to Jake’s bar, where they hurled a street sign through The Hive’s plate-glass window. He and his father rushed outside to prevent the peaceful protesters from storming his bar.

Scurlock’s friend, catching his wind after smashing computer monitors, knocked Gardner’s father to the ground. (It’s on tape.) Or as CNN’s Madeline Holcombe put it: “An unidentified man can be seen pushing Gardner’s father.” Gardner rushed to help his father, then backed away toward the bar, lifting his shirt to show the protesters he was armed, and telling them to move along. Again, it’s all on tape. Murmurings can be heard from the crowd: “That (expletive) got a gun” and “It’s not worth it (expletive) you stu–…”

At that point, peaceful protester Alayna Melendez leapt on Gardner from behind (not subscribers to the Marquess of Queensberry rules, these peaceful protesters), knocking him down and into the street, whereupon yet another peaceful protester jumped on top of Gardner, who fired two warning shots in the air, scattering his first two assailants. Again: all on tape.

Three seconds later, as Gardner was trying to get up, Scurlock jumped on him from behind and put him in a chokehold — which I believe is considered definitive proof of intentional murder when performed by a police officer. In videos, Gardner can be heard yelling, “Get off me! Get off me!”

With his right arm pinned, and Scurlock choking him, Gardner moved the gun to his left hand and shot over his shoulder, hitting Scurlock in the collarbone, killing him.

Or as The New York Times’ Azi Paybarah explained it: “Mr. Gardner got into a fight with one man, James Scurlock, 22. The two scuffled before Mr. Gardner fired a shot that killed him.” They “scuffled.” It brings to mind the Times headline from Nov. 24, 1963: “President Kennedy Dies in Dallas After Scuffle — Albeit at Great Distance — With Lee Harvey Oswald.”

Let’s be fair, though. Maybe Scurlock jumped Gardner, or maybe Gardner jumped Scurlock. Who knows? It’s not like there are 4 million videos of the incident.

Gardner was immediately taken into police custody for questioning and held until 11 p.m. the next night.

The Democratic district attorney, Don Kleine, his chief deputy Brenda Beadle, and all the homicide detectives spent 12 hours that weekend reconstructing the incident with multiple videos. Their unanimous conclusion? That Gardner shot Scurlock in self-defense.

Despite the delusional claims posted on “social media” that Gardner used the N-word — which, as we all know, is grounds for immediate execution by any black person — none of the videos substantiate that. To the contrary, Scurlock’s own friend denied that Gardner said anything racial at all. (Apparently, you can’t believe everything you read on the internet.)

At 22, Scurlock already had a rap sheet a mile long, including home invasion, assault and battery, domestic violence — and, of course, he was in the middle of a crime spree that very night. Methamphetamine and cocaine were found in his urine.

But “the community” erupted like COVID in April. Nebraska state Sen. Megan Hunt (bisexual, graduate of a now-defunct college) repeatedly called Gardner a “white supremacist.” Another Nebraska state senator, Kara Eastman (bisexual), called Gardner’s shooting of Spurlock a “cold-blooded murder.”

(Why do I mention their sexual orientations? A lot of the hate toward Gardner seems to come from the transgender community for saying on Facebook that transgenders would be restricted to the unisex bathrooms after a man in a dress attacked a female customer in the ladies’ room.)

Twitter was full of unattractive humans claiming that Gardner was a “white supremacist,” which were dutifully reprinted in local media, such as this one from @nostudavab (Twitter banner: “F*CK TRUMP”):

“Club owner Jake Gardner shot and killed a protestor in Omaha on video, yelling racial slurs. he is openly racist and homophobic. he murdered James Scurlock, he’s proud of it, and he’s not in jail.”

Protesters besieged Kleine’s neighborhood.

Kleine responded to the mob’s demand for “justice” by calling in a black prosecutor, Fred Franklin, to make damn sure the grand jury indicted Gardner — whom Kleine (the elected D.A.) had found to be innocent. As he was expected to do, Franklin produced a series of fanciful indictments, including for manslaughter and making a “terroristic threat.” (The “terroristic threat” was Gardner lifting his shirt to show the peaceful protesters that he was armed.)

The special prosecutor’s ALL NEW EVIDENCE THAT BLEW THE OTHER FACTS AWAY was this: The night of the BLM protest, Gardner had posted on Facebook: “Just when you think ‘what else could 2020 throw at me?’ Then you have to pull 48 hours of military style firewatch.”


Gardner’s landlord, Frank Vance, immediately evicted The Hive and The Gatsby, and sent an anguished apology letter to Scurlock’s family (“deepest sympathy … the pain and suffering … losing a child to unnecessary violence … apologize for this horrible incident … time to heal … very deepest condolences”).

Gardner was facing 95 years in prison for shooting a career criminal who was choking him, and now he had lost his source of income. So naturally his friends tried to set up a GoFundMe account to help pay for his legal defense.

GoFundMe’s response? They immediately and repeatedly took down the page, based on their clearly stated policy: We don’t like you.

Here’s a thought, GoFundMe: Guaranteeing a fair trial for an individual accused of a crime isn’t the same as defending the thing he’s accused of. That’s the whole point: Gardner wanted to prove that he was innocent. Nope! No fair trial, no fair press, no livelihood, no GoFundMe. No chance.

Meanwhile, the family of the convicted criminal who jumped Gardner has already raised more than a quarter-million dollars on GoFundMe. (Funeral expenses can be costly!)

Poor Jake Gardner didn’t stand a chance against the raging, hate-filled multitude. Even those sworn to uphold the law, like Kleine and Franklin, leapt in with the mob. And a corporation whose business it is to enable people to raise money for just causes such as getting a fair trial refused to do business with him, not unlike the Memphis Woolworth’s treatment of black people in 1960.

Sadly, President Trump never said a word about his polite, cheerful supporter being railroaded in Omaha. Gardner had attended Trump’s inauguration with such high hopes. He had well wishes even for the (can we say “insane”?) protesters he encountered there.

Last weekend, facing death threats and a kangaroo court, and with no means to mount a defense, Gardner killed himself, rather than be killed by the mob waiting for him back in Omaha.

This is the part of the column where I make a clarion call for action. How about civil suits against the monsters in the prosecutor’s office, against the criminal-supporting GoFundMe and the Facebook and Twitter defamation mobs! Maybe a department of justice investigation or FCC action against biased social media companies. Antitrust suits. Boycotts!

I’ve got nothing. The country has gone mad. I always figured the first armed civilian who ever fought back would put an end to the violence exploding all over the country — the violence that police and prosecutors can’t or won’t stop. “We have the guns,” conservatives like to say. In fact, it’s even worse now.

It’s official: You can’t protect yourself. Not even a blameless ex-Marine could defend himself from being choked to death. The D.A. will call in a “special” prosecutor to throw you to the wolves, and they’ll both be praised for railroading an innocent man in the Omaha World Herald, while the “elite” media defame you.


History Has Been Thrust Upon Us!

How did we come to such Orwellian times? As I watch the insanity swirling around us I couldn’t help but think of this quote from the Lord of the Rings.

“I wish it need not have happened in my time,” said Frodo. “So do I,” said Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”

The title of this post, “History Has Been Thrust Upon Us!” was taken from an article by Ray DiLorenzo in the Canada Free Press:on August 29, 2020 entitled, What If Democrats Lose?, saying:

If the Democrats lose this election, it is not difficult to imagine that they will go nuts, slash out at anything that moves in the wrong direction. The mobs are sufficiently riled and waiting for orders. To partly paraphrase Victor Davis Hansen: The Democrats have made a Devil’s bargain.

Marxists under Sanders provide the anarchy and chaos while Democrats watch their cities burn, having agreed to do almost nothing. They will keep COVID-19 alive as long as possible to keep the economy down. Never mind the human toll.

When Democrats win, and at the time they were convinced they would win, Sanders will halt the rioting, having delivered a destroyed middle class, a badly wounded America. The Democrats will take the credit, looking like peacemakers. Sanders will then demand payment, a socialist America ready to be delivered to the globalists. And he will get it.

The left has upended all that’s held inviolable by Americans. Americans believe we have the right to speak our minds, run our businesses, eat at a restaurant, walk the streets and enjoy our homes and families in safety, without being physically attacked, or murdered, by out of control mobs. That used to be known as a crime, now it’s freedom of expression. How Orwellian is that?

Crime is Free Speech and Self Defense is Crime!

These mobs aren’t spontaneous. They’re mobs that have been organized all over the nation. Criminals who are not only encouraged, but supported by politicians. Elected leaders who all swore oaths to protect and defend the Constitution, which means protecting the citizens who voted them in……and they are not doing either. In point of fact, they’re doing everything in their power to destroy the American culture, the American identity, the American economy, the President of the United States and the Constitution. That used to be called treason. Imagine that!

Members of the U.S. Congress can’t even leave the White House without being attacked by a mob.

Sen. Rand Paul and his wife Kelly, attacked by an angry mob as they left the White House Thursday night, on Friday credited police with saving their lives. Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) said he took one look at the mob awaiting Republican guests of President Trump, and became “very worried.”

Who’s behind all this? In this case the D.C. Mayor must share in the responsibility to a large extent. She, in point of fact, had to allow this group to gather. All this insanity and violence is clearly an organized criminal effort masquerading as political expression, and they believe this isn’t the end, it’s the beginning.

Rand Paul says:

My feeling is there is interstate criminal traffic being paid for across state lines, but you won’t know it unless you arrest them. Otherwise you just think oh these are just some normal hoodlums from a big city. I promise you that at least some of these members and people who attacked us were not from D.C.
They flew here on a plane, they’ve all got fresh new clothes, and they were paid to be here. It is a crime to do that and it needs to be traced. The FBI needs to investigate. But the only way you can do it is you have to arrest people. And usually we say ‘oh, well, you didn’t get hurt, so we’re not going to arrest them.’

They were inciting a riot, and they would have killed us had the police not been there. They all need to be arrested, and I’m not saying forever, but they need to be arrested, questioned, they need to say where you’re staying, and the bills need to be subpoenaed by a judge, to say ‘who paid for your bill, how did you get here on a plane and staying in a fancy hotel, and yet you’re acting like a criminal.’

Something’s going on here and it’s much bigger than people think. But the bottom line is, we can’t let the United States become Portland and that’s what my fear is…

Well, fear is what the left is banking on to win the election. Kamala Harris and the Democrat party threaten America with more violence if she and Biden aren’t elected saying:

You think the mayhem in Minneapolis was bad? You think it was bad in Portland? In Seattle? Chicago? New York? How about Denver? Atlanta? Philadelphia? Milwaukee? Washington, D.C.? How about that nice little Kenosha over there? If you think those were bad, just wait for what happens if you do something stupid in November.

Cities are being destroyed, people’s lives are being destroyed, the economy of these cities are crumbling from all this insane violence. Violence that’s not only being condoned by local and state authorities, they’re supporting this criminal behavior by refusing to enforce the law, and even refusing to charge those arrested by the police for the crimes they’re committing.

Police departments they’re trying to defund! Police, leaving their citizens at the mercy of criminals, rapists, thieves, brutes and barbarians. Police who are being deliberately targeted by these barbarians as a result of their complicity in all this criminal activity. All the while charging as criminals those who are defending themselves against these monsters.

Four in Five Black Americans Want Same or More Cop Presence in Neighborhood

Seattle Police Chief Reacts to City Council Voting to Slash Pay Within SPD

But it’s not just the violence. The states have imposed insane and irrational mandates on the entire nation over this over reaction to the latest coronavirus scare mongering, none of their predictions have been valid, and for good reason, see the links below. The entire nation is facing massive economic harm as a result. People have lost businesses! Businesses that will never reopen.

Employees have lost their jobs and are going broke, many losing houses or behind on their rent and facing eviction.
WSJ: Next round of layoffs permanent…

Not everyone furloughed will be put back on payroll…
Fights are breaking out over wearing masks in spite of the fact it’s known the masks don’t work and in fact, are unhealthy.
Masks Are Neither Effective Nor Safe: A Summary Of The Science

The media will surely not tell the truth about the end of COVID during the election

Here’s the Shockingly Small Number of People Who Died From Only the Coronavirus

Oops: It Looks Like the Vast Majority of Positive COVID Results Should Have Been Negative

As a history buff I intellectually understood how all this could overtake a society. But reality is a shocker as I see it actually unfolding right in front of my eyes, in America! I now truly understand how dictators take over a country using propaganda and fear. How easy it is to turn citizens against one another, in order to take power when everything has fallen apart.

The consequences of these lockdowns has been devastating to the nation’s health. Suicides, untreated afflictions that’s ended up costing lives. Governor DeWine of Ohio has an impeachment issue but says he’s not focusing on that according to a spokesman! He’s focusing on saving lives and creating jobs! Really? How Orwellian is that? Since virtually everything he’s done has the opposite effect, and it doesn’t take a degree in medicine or economics to understand that.

This coronavirus scare mongering “has been a godsend to the oligarchs, who are licking their chops as one small business after another fails, leaving Americans with no choice but to spend whatever money they have with corporate behemoths.”

We need to define this reality as it is, and not how these insane politicians and their acolyte conspirators in the media define it. If we want clarity, we need definition because that’s what leads to clarity. Clarity then leads to understanding. Understanding leads to good decision making. And if we want harmony, it will take good decision making.

Truth is the sublime convergence of history and reality. History has a foundation and a context. What we’re told should bear some resemblance to what we see going on in reality. If what’s presented to us fails in either of those categories, it’s wrong. Then all we have to do is develop the intellectual response to explain why it’s wrong.

We simply can’t escape the fact that “history has been thrust upon us. We will either be a witness to a greater America or the greatest catastrophe this nation and the world has ever experienced. Without America, there will be no where else to go”, and now it’s time to “decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”


A multitude of challenges to reason

I know, I know – the only things that matter right now are the election and filling the vacancy on the Supreme Court left by the death of Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Certainly nothing matters more, but other things matter and the public can’t afford to take its eyes off all of them. The fight against Democrats is a multi-front battle, and every front must be minded and tended, always.

Sometimes fronts that were everything a minute ago fade into oblivion because of the hysteria created to manipulate the public. We need to remember to stay focused amid the distractions.

Remember the post office? It was “THE MOST IMPORTANT THING EVER!!!” just a few weeks ago, now you never hear about it. Democrats scrambled to come back to Washington to vote on a bailout in order to “save our democracy” from the evil President Trump. It went nowhere in the Senate and Democrats are no longer holding breathless hearings on it. Late-night comics have stopped praising this tax dollar black hole and cable news panels have ceased clutching their pearls over the prospect of the election being “stolen” by stamps. What happened?

Democrats put on their show, knowing it was garbage, it served its purpose and they’ve moved on; it also helps that they had activist state courts change voting laws in states like Pennsylvania and Michigan to make fraud more likely. Postmarks are no longer necessary, deadlines have been arbitrarily extended, and anyone can “collect” ballots on behalf of non-family members. The election runs risk of being stolen in mail, alright, but it’s by Democrats so it doesn’t matter.

Meanwhile, the president orders an end to the racist indoctrination of federal employees, couched under the banner of “inclusion,” called critical race theory. Why the federal government was shoveling money to a bunch of leftists to come in and call everyone a racist while holding segregated events is something that not a single liberal journalist bothered to find curious enough to investigate.

That the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was plowing ahead with their seminar anyway, defying the president’s executive order was also of no concern to the media. The liberal establishment media reported breathlessly about the order, but they largely ignored its defiance by the CDC. Does the president secretly work for the CDC and not the other way around?

It was eventually cancelled, after the Director of the Office of Management and Budget got personally involved. Shouldn’t open insubordination be news? Nope, not when it’s in service to the liberal agenda.

Another tentacle of the government, the Orwellian Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, is attempting to sue its way to possibly creating for itself the power to undermine all private sector loans. Sounds dramatic, doesn’t it? It’s true.

A friend of mine, former congressman and long-ago colleague when we were at the Heritage Foundation together, Ernest Istook, wrote this week about how the CFPB is suing debt collectors to change the terms of student loans they’ve purchased that went delinquent. As a student debtor (still) myself, and someone who would not have been able to attend college without them, this is an issue I follow.

Istook writes of how the CFPB’s actions could threaten the entire private student loan industry. How? The “secondary market is the key to making loans available, not only for students but also for home and car buyers, for consumer goods, and for credit cards that make everyday transactions work smoothly. Purchasing loans from original lenders expands the availability of credit.”

In English, lenders lend money, then sell those loans to others for a profit less than they would get should the entire term of the loan pass and be paid off on time, but a profit nonetheless. This frees up more money for primary lenders to lend out to more people. If the primary lenders can’t sell their loans, they’ll have less money to lend, and fewer people get loans. If the terms of those loans, which we borrowers agreed to, can be changed to make them unfavorable to hold (as the CFBP is trying to impose), then who’s going to buy them? If they aren’t bought, the primary lenders have less to lend. The whole system could tailspin and leave the federal government in the game of student loans.

The whole thing is a mess, an unnecessary one. This can only happen in a government so big one tentacle has no idea what the other tentacles are doing.

All of these things, and many, many more, are happening simultaneously. None are as romantic or headline-grabbing as the election or the Supreme Court fight, but they’re all important in their own way. Conservatives have to guard against attempts to knock down whole sections of the walls guarding liberty, but they also need to fight against the attempts to chip away pieces too. Each piece lost, big or small, is unlikely to be recaptured once gone.



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.