Leftists just KNOW what is good for us. Conservatives need evidence..

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As President, Trump will be as transformative as Reagan; He has blown the political consensus out of the water

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31 July, 2018  

The insidious metaphor of trade as 'war'

Jeff Jacoby below is correct in what he says but he fails to take account of Trump's objective in restricting imports.  Trump has repeatedly made clear that he does not want his restrictions to be permanent.  Permanent restrictions would be very damaging, as Jeff says.

What Trump is doing is dealing himself some very powerful bargaining chips, with the aim of getting other countries to reduce their trade-distorting arrangements which penalize American firms.  And he has had considerable success with that. The EU has now come to the party. 

And note that it was in negotiating with the EU that Trump offered a complete free trade deal.  The bureaucrats of the EU reacted to that with horror but that was not Trump's fault.  Trump is the free trader.

OUR CIVIC AND political discourse is replete with metaphors.

We avoid having to swallow a bitter pill by instead kicking the can down the road. Desperate candidates throw a Hail Mary pass. Sensitive souls learn that if they can't take the heat, they should get out of the kitchen. A good prosecutor can get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich.

Sometimes metaphors are used to express a political idea with verve, as when our nation of assimilating immigrants is dubbed a melting pot, or when John Roberts said his job on the Supreme Court would be to call balls and strikes. But metaphors are also invoked for more than style. A deft metaphor advances an argument — sometimes a highly dubious argument. To say the poor should get a larger slice of the pie is to imply that wealth is limited and someone should redistribute it. If American officials speak of pressing the Russia reset button, their message is that better relations with Moscow are primarily a matter of American will. Insist that illegal immigrants must go to the back of the line and you are contending that they had a legal option but chose to ignore it.

Of all the arguments we advance by metaphor, perhaps none is as potent as war. When Lyndon Johnson, unveiling an array of programs to assist the poor, declared a War on Poverty, he was telling the nation that it had no higher priority. When Jimmy Carter told the nation that curtailing energy use was the moral equivalent of war, his implicit argument was that American independence was at stake.

Consider another war metaphor — one employed so matter-of-factly that it has indelibly shaped public thinking: trade war.

Talk of trade wars is hardly new, but under Donald Trump, trade-war rhetoric has become ubiquitous. In speeches and on social media, he repeatedly approaches trade in terms suited to a grim international conflict — a struggle for dominance among nations in which there must be winners and losers.

"When a country (USA) is losing many billions of dollars on trade with virtually every country it does business with, trade wars are good, and easy to win," Trump tweeted in March. Last month he put it even more sharply: "When you're almost 800 Billion Dollars a year down on Trade, you can't lose a Trade War! The U.S. has been ripped off by other countries for years on Trade."

For centuries, economists have pointed out the destructive folly of tariffs and other trade barriers. Tirelessly they explain that a trade deficit is not a defeat, just as a shopper's "deficit" with a department store is not a defeat. They implore policymakers to see that trade restrictions always impose more costs on a country's economy than any benefits they generate. They highlight the ways in which protectionist tariffs make many consumers poorer in order to make a handful of producers richer — and how even the intended beneficiaries often end up worse off.

But data and common sense are no match for the seductive metaphor of trade as warfare.

Many Americans will say they favor free trade, but then add the caveat that it must be "fair trade" as well. They feel the tug of national resentment when the president demands: "Are we just going to continue and let our farmers and country get ripped off? Lost $817 Billion on Trade last year. No weakness!" They may not share Trump's confidence that trade wars are "easy to win," but they agree that other countries' protectionist measures are a form of belligerence that cannot just be ignored.

The evidence is piling up that the impact of Trump's retaliatory trade penalties has been falling hardest not on foreigners, but on Americans. Yet when the president indignantly declares that America is being victimized by its trading partners, much of the nation nonetheless nods approvingly. In a new survey, the Pew Research Center found that while 49 percent of respondents thought higher tariffs would be damaging, fully 40 percent said they would do more good than harm.

All of this comes from thinking of trade as metaphorical warfare — as an economic struggle pitting nation against nation.

That's a great fallacy. Nations don't trade with each other. We speak as if they do out of habit and convenience, but it's not true. The United States and Canada are not competing firms. America doesn't buy steel from China, and China doesn't buy soybeans from America. Rather, hundreds of individual American companies choose to buy steel from Chinese mills and fabricators, and hundreds of Chinese-owned firms make deals to buy soybeans from far-flung American growers. Unlike wars, which really are fought by nation against nation, international trade occurs among countless sellers and buyers, all acting independently in their own best interest.

Tariffs don't punish countries. They punish innumerable consumers, wholesalers, importers, exporters, farmers, manufacturers — the myriad discrete actors whose choices and preferences are the true substance of international trade. To those individuals, national trade deficits and surpluses are irrelevant. They aren't competing — they're cooperating. Buyers and sellers aren't in conflict with each other, let alone with each other's countries.

On the contrary: By doing business together, traders create wealth and connections, knitting the world together in mutual interest, making the planet more harmonious.

Trade war is an insidious term. The metaphor notwithstanding, trade isn't war. It's peace.



Trump threatens to shut down government over border security

There are more retiring Democrat than GOP senators at the next election so this could be a ploy to keep the senators in Washington and thus prevent them from campaigning in their home states

Trump has threatened he will be willing to shut down the government if Democrats refuse to vote for changes he seeks to make to the US immigration system, including building a wall along the US-Mexico border.

“I would be willing to ‘shut down’ government if the Democrats do not give us the votes for Border Security, which includes the Wall!” the president tweeted.

“Must get rid of Lottery, Catch & Release etc. and finally go to system of Immigration based on MERIT! “We need great people coming into our Country!”

Mr Trump returned to the idea of shutting down the government over the border wall just days after meeting at the White House with House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to discuss the fall legislative agenda.

Mr McConnell, asked about a shutdown last week during a Kentucky radio interview, said it was not going to happen. He did acknowledge, however, that the border funding issue was unlikely to be resolved before the November midterm elections.

Mr Trump campaigned on the promise of building a border wall to deter illegal immigration and making Mexico pay for it. Mexico has refused. Congress has given the president some wall funding but not as much as he has requested.

Mr Trump also wants changes to legal immigration, including scrapping a visa lottery program. In addition, he wants to end the practice of releasing immigrants caught entering the country illegally on the condition that they show up for court hearings.

The president has also demanded that the US shift to an immigration system that’s based more on merit and less on family ties.

Democrats and some Republicans have objected to some of the changes Mr Trump seeks. The federal budget year ends on September 30, and politicians will spend much of August in their states campaigning for re-election in November.

The House is now in a five-week recess, returning after Labour Day. The Senate remains in session and is set to take a one-week break the week of August 6, then returning for the rest of the month.

Both chambers will have a short window of working days to approve a spending bill before government funding expires.

Mr Trump would be taking a political risk if he does, in fact, allow most government functions to lapse on October 1 — the first day of the new budget year — roughly a month before the November 6 elections, when Republican control of both the House and Senate is at stake.

House Republicans released a spending bill this month that provides $US5 billion next year to build Mr Trump’s wall, a major boost.

Democrats have long opposed financing Mr Trump’s wall but lack the votes by themselves to block House approval of that amount. However, they do have the strength to derail legislation in the closely divided Senate.

Without naming a figure, Mr Trump said in April that he would “have no choice” but to force a government shutdown this fall if he doesn’t get the border security money he wants.

The $US5 billion is well above the $US1.6 billion in the Senate version of the bill, which would finance the Homeland Security Department.



Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker Host Bible Event Against Trump Supreme Court Pick

On Tuesday, three prominent senators — all likely 2020 presidential candidates — joined the Rev. Dr. William Barber in opposing President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. At the event, Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.) quoted the Bible in their attacks against Kavanaugh. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) did not quote the Bible, but joined with Barber, who did.

"Corporations have won 62 percent of the cases they've been in whenever they are up against workers, shareholders, people who represent the public interest," Warren declared at the press conference Tuesday afternoon. She argued that allowing Kavanaugh to join the Supreme Court would violate Matthew 25, Jesus' parable of the sheep and the goats.

"It is not enough to have a good heart ... we are called to act," Warren declared. She argued that Kavanaugh's opponents are "on the moral side of history."

Sanders immediately seized on his favorite topic, the Supreme Court case Citizens United v. FEC (2010), which ruled that for legal purposes "corporations" — people coming together in groups — are also "people" and have First Amendment rights. The case ruled that individuals can pay to promote a film expressing political speech, a basic principle that liberals claim allows billionaires to "buy elections."

"People are outraged that billionaires are buying elections," Sanders declared. "Do you know that that is a direct result of the Citizens Untied decision?" He suggested that Kavanaugh's confirmation would be a moral stain on America.

Booker agreed, declaring that conservatives are "trying to roll back civil rights, the protections against discrimination. This has nothing to do with politics, this has to do with who we are as moral beings. There is no neutral. ... You are either complicit in evil or you are fighting against it."

The Rev. Dr. William Barber, a longtime liberal activist, warned that if Kavanaugh is confirmed, "We could be facing the most regressive Supreme Court since Jim Crow. There must be a moral fight to keep Kavanaugh off the Supreme Court."

Warren, Booker, and Barber misused or twisted four Bible passages to fight Kavanaugh's confirmation.

1. Matthew 25.

Warren quoted Matthew 25, when Jesus tells the parable of the sheep and the goats. Jesus said the Son of Man will separate the good (sheep) from the evil (goats).

"Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me,'" Jesus said (Matthew 25:34-36).

He suggested that the righteous will ask when they did all these things, and He will answer "Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me" (Matthew 25:40).

This command to love and serve "the least of these" is extremely important in Christianity, but Warren warped it. She suggested that Matthew 25 isn't just a command to love and serve the poor directly, but to oppose a Supreme Court that would rule in favor of corporations rather than people.

Warren is dead wrong in her application of this verse. The Supreme Court's job isn't just to protect "people" against "corporations" — it's to apply the law justly and equitably. Sometimes an organized group of people — a "corporation" in legal terms — will be in the right, while someone Warren thinks of as an underdog will be in the wrong. In those cases, the Supreme Court should rule against the underdog.

Warren's complaint that the Court has favored corporations 62 percent of the time reveals a fundamental misunderstanding about justice that the Bible does not sanction. The Bible rightly condemns when the powerful abuse their power to oppress the poor, but it does not condemn the just ruler who punishes a lawbreaker (Romans 13) or sides with the powerful when the powerful are in the right.

The Court's job is not to twist the law to always favor the underdog. If it did so, that would be unjust.

2. Isaiah 10.

Rev. Barber turned to Isaiah 10 to condemn Kavanaugh.

"The scriptures are clear that when it comes to public policy, 'Woe unto those who legislate evil and rob the poor and women and children of their rights,'" Barber declared, paraphrasing Isaiah 10:1-2. "The scripture is clear that a nation must make sure that its laws lift the hungry, the hopeless, the poor, the sick, the naked, and the least of these, and the stranger."

Notice the sleight of hand. Barber quoted Isaiah 10 and then melded it with Matthew 25 to suggest the law needs to favor "the least of these," to "lift" them.

This is nonsense. The Bible is clear that Christians must care for the poor and the least of these, but it nowhere says that the law must "lift" the poor out of poverty.

In Isaiah 10, God is condemning lawmakers who rob the poor — He is not commanding laws to make the poor richer. It is injustice to steal wages from a poor man who has just earned them, but that does not make it justice to give money to a man just because he is poor. Indeed, that would violate the principle that "if anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat" (2 Thessalonians 3:10).

3. Psalm 23.

In his remarks, Sen. Booker quoted one line of Psalm 23, the famous psalm that begins, "The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want." Booker quoted verse 4: "Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me."

Or rather, Booker quoted the first phrase. Here's his tortured reasoning on this passage:

There’s a saying from one of the Abrahamic faiths in a psalm saying, "Yea though we walk through the valley of the shadow of death." We are walking through the valley of the shadow of death but that doesn’t say, "though I sit in the valley of the shadow of death." It doesn’t say that I’m watching on the sidelines of the valley of the shadow of death, it says I am walking through the valley of the shadow of death. I am taking agency, that I am going to make it through this crisis.

Booker twisted a psalm about God's providence in the midst of despair — "your rod and your staff, they comfort me" — and turned it into an exhortation to "walk" rather than "sit" or "watch on the sidelines" in a moral battle. God's providence in the psalm does suggest that "I am going to make it through this crisis," but the psalm is not meant as a call to action. Indeed, the psalm says God "makes me lie down in green pastures" and sets a "table before me"...

Booker has taken one of the deepest and most comforting psalms and twisted it into a banal call to action. This was so dumb and ridiculous, I couldn't help but laugh.

4. Numbers 13-14.

Booker did draw something of the right conclusion from another passage, however. He summarized Numbers 13-14, saying, "Moses sent people into the promised land — 12 folks to view what was going on, and ten of them came back saying, 'We can't meet this challenge.'"

"Joshua and Caleb saw something different," Booker declared. "Joshua and Caleb refused to surrender to fear, they refused to surrender to cynicism. We need the Joshua spirit right now. We need the Caleb spirit right now."

Joshua and Caleb did indeed trust in God to do what He promised and bring the Jews into the promised land, and their courage is to be emulated today. However, Booker suggested that opposing Kavanaugh is akin to making America a promised land — an extremely tenuous application.

In the end, these liberals are fighting tooth and nail against a judge who will remain faithful to the text and original intent of the Constitution, rather than twisting it to support a liberal agenda — as these very Democrats twisted the Bible. Here's hoping American see through the rhetoric.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


30 July, 2018 

Stupid logic about genes in the BMJ

All British medical journals have a distinct Leftist bias so the conclusion below was  predictable.  Leftists hate any evidence that genes cause anything so the claim below that genes  do not influence social class was to be expected.

Their basic leap of logic is that individual genes have only a narrow mode of action so they cannot cause anything as complex as social class.  That's logic?  Its like saying that tires can't by themselves make a car move so tires are irrelevant to cars.

The universal conclusion of those who study the relationships between genes and traits is that any one trait is polygenetic.  Just as a car needs a lot of bits to make it go, so any trait needs a particular underlying SET of genes for it to manifest itself.

And as Charles Murray showed decades ago, social class is strongly determined by IQ. High IQ people tend to get rich and low IQ people usually stay poor.  And IQ IS heavily genetically determined, so the paper below is just counter-factual rubbish aimed at drawing a particular do-gooder conclusion

Genetics and social class

N A Holtzman


Objective: To assess claims that genes are a major determinant of social class.

Design: Using genetic epidemiological principles, five claims on the role of genes in determining social class are examined: (1) traits that run in families are usually inherited; (2) complex traits can be explained by alleles at a single gene locus; (3) complex traits are transmitted intact from one generation to the next; (4) natural selection explains social advantage. (5) Heritability estimates provide a valid estimate of the importance of genes in explaining complex human traits or behaviour.

Results: (1) Traits that run in families can result from environmental exposures that differ by social class. (2) The protein encoded by any single gene has too narrow a range of biological activity to explain traits as complex as social status. (3) Because alleles at different gene loci are transmitted independently, genetic inheritance cannot explain why offspring display the same complex traits as their parents. (4) The propagation of mutations that might result in a selective advantage takes much longer than the time for which any social class has achieved or maintained dominance. (5) Heritability measures are accurate only when environment is maintained constant. This is impossible in evaluating human traits.

Conclusions: The roots of social class differences do not lie in our genes. Consequently, genetics cannot be used as a justification for maintaining a ruling class, limiting procreation among the poor, or minimising social support programmes.



Donald Trump could be ready to order a strike against Iran, Australian Government figures say

Senior figures in the Turnbull Government have told the ABC they believe the United States is prepared to bomb Iran's nuclear capability, perhaps as early as next month, and that Australia is poised to help identify possible targets.

But another senior source, in security, emphasises there is a difference between providing intelligence and "active targeting"
It comes amid intense sabre-rattling by US President Donald Trump and his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani.

The ABC has been told secretive Australian defence facilities would likely play a role in identifying targets in Iran, as would British intelligence agencies.

But a senior security source emphasised there was a big difference between providing accurate intelligence and analysis on Iran's facilities and being part of a "kinetic" mission.

"Developing a picture is very different to actually participating in a strike," the source said.

"Providing intelligence and understanding as to what is happening on the ground so that the Government and allied governments are fully informed to make decisions is different to active targeting."

The top-secret Pine Gap joint defence facility in the Northern Territory is considered crucial among the so-called "Five Eyes" intelligence partners — the US, UK, Australia, Canada and New Zealand — for its role in directing American spy satellites.

Analysts from the little-known spy agency Australian Geospatial-Intelligence Organisation would also be expected to play a part.

Canada would be unlikely to play a role in any military action in Iran, nor would the smallest Five Eyes security partner New Zealand, sources said.

Any US-led strike on Iranian targets would be fraught for a region bristling with tensions. Israel would have reason to be anxious about retaliation, given Iran rejects Israel's right to exist.

That said, Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in April invoked the so-called "Begin Doctrine" that calls on the Jewish state to ensure nations hostile to Israel be prevented from developing a nuclear weapons capability.

"Israel will not allow regimes that seek our annihilation to acquire nuclear weapons," Mr Netanyahu said.



We should denounce folly

Modern society suffers when tolerance is given to fools.  We too often give them the power and prestige they demand

James E. Smith, Ph.D.                                                                     

An old adage says we should “gladly suffer fools.” The opposing view is that we should “stop doing stupid.” Either way, the key concern is the direct impact that not confronting stupid or shortsighted actions has on morale and the long-term effectiveness of any decision-making/leadership process.

Whether it is managing people, business processes, visionary leadership or important innovation efforts, the need to mitigate stupid, wasteful directives, interjections and interruptions has become an essential requirement if we are to grow socially and economically.

A primary reason we as a species have been so successful is our ability to take advantage of acquired knowledge in making decisions and solving problems. These abilities also allow us to aggressively protect ourselves from the varied and changing environments we choose to live in, amidst the diverse personalities that we are expected to live and work with.

In other words, we have the ability to successfully teach, mentor, lead and manage as required to precipitate the next great something. This becomes a clear necessity in staying ahead of the problems that prior generations created in solving even earlier problems. It also seems to be a primary characteristic for any advancing technological society, where the notion of simply stepping off the progress merry-go-round in favor of “an earlier, simpler time” will lead only to frustration and a train to Emerald City.

And yet many seem to have an apparently endless willingness to allow, or at least tolerate, acts of stupidity. This is certainly not a new problem. Each generation has had to deal with the few, but noisy and persistent, actors who make life and progress just a little harder to navigate. But unlike in the past, when we may have had the luxury to argue trivial points ad nauseam with little consequence, the accelerating rate of our social and technological development means we can no longer tolerate these delays.

Consider how our society often indulges foolishness by individuals or groups acting out of ignorance or petulance. These people expect to continue getting away with their interference, obstruction, stupidity and obnoxious behavior because they think they are entitled, above reproach or simply smarter than the rest of society, or they have ensconced themselves high up in the hierarchical or governmental pecking order.

Many people who fit this description actually begin as foolish, but appeal to the mercy of their associates or subordinates, learn what is needed, and use the group’s combined skill set to move the process forward. This preferred path eventually removes the party from the “stupid group.” (Your own past experiences can judge what percentage of the population chooses this option.)

Others, however, ignore reality and micro-manage whatever capabilities, skill sets and authorities they have been given or assigned – and often request more time and resources to advance their beliefs, agendas and ignorance. Ultimately, if they fail to accomplish their goals, they find ways to blame everything and everyone around them for their failure. If they plead their case well enough, they may even be rewarded with a promotion and even greater responsibilities that they can’t or won’t handle in the future.

This latter situation is clearly too prevalent in our society at all levels of corporate America, and, of course, within the government: local, state and federal. It is also prevalent in our social programs and the very activities we subject ourselves and our children to. In many of these cases, people get fed up and walk out, while others feel compelled by societal, employment and governance rules and expectations to put up with it all.

It is clear to a growing number of us that we as a society have sat too long letting people who have perfected the art of stupid continue to add ever increasing levels of nonsense to our already busy lives, through accident, oversight, ignorance, laziness, personal gain, or just plain self-entitlement.

Letting “stupid” continue, with no relief or recourse, is affecting our home, social and work environment, our creative and innovative talents, and the governance we expect and subject ourselves to.

We shouldn’t have a problem with ignorant people who are willing to learn and to do the best they can. The problem is with those who are unwilling to learn, or to develop new skill sets but still expect to be allowed by silent assent to do as they please. Even worse are the growing numbers of people who expect to succeed by virtue of their imperious demands and loud, obnoxious, even threatening behavior.

Non-reaction on our part has perpetuated growing levels of such behavior on their part, and an increasing degree of hopelessness and complacency on the part of decent, reasonable people. That has an additional downside.

Failure to respond and act in response to stupid or bad behavior breeds greater incompetence, as equally or more incompetent people are recruited at all management and leadership levels, to ensure that “stupid” isn’t exposed or jeopardized. More importantly, we also get a lowered performance bar, reducing or even removing challenges and the need for excellence. This result makes us all stupid.

Clearly, stupid has been around since little Jimmy decided to poke the sleeping bear with a stick.

I do believe, though, that we as a population have increasingly (and incorrectly) decided that it is just plain easier to let things continue as they are. We have become a nation of people who are too busy to get involved; too indoctrinated into believing the current state of affairs was mandated on high; or too intimidated by loud, menacing street mobs to question their wisdom or asserted “will of the people.”

These will eventually become more opportunities for well-deserved Darwin Awards to weed out the worst practitioners of stupid (or worse) behavior.

I don’t believe today’s “middle America” had any real input into the present situation, though it may be complicit through its silence. But I get an uneasy feeling that what is being pontificated, decided and decreed is being listened to and accepted by too many people who are either clueless, apathetic or feeling obligated by self-imposed, job-related or socially pressured expectations to just sit there and take it.

I also believe a growing percentage of those same folks simply don’t notice or acknowledge what they read or hear about, or even witness with their own eyes. So why do we continue down this path?

I don’t have an answer. Maybe we just need a few people with the courage and presence of mind to speak out, step forward and refuse to take it anymore. It may require a groundswell from the general population to get noticed. But that is unlikely to happen without a few brave people taking a stand.

All I know is, a lot of individuals in this world are still plugged-in and aware enough to know things are not right, or not right enough.

We all see and call things wrong at times, or frequently. However, if we haven’t made a few mistakes, we probably haven’t done anything good either, or we are still in bed with the covers pulled over our heads.

Making well-reasoned decisions – and standing up to bullies, oppression and intolerance – are hallmarks of our nation’s success story. Our continued success, and even survival, depends on this continuing. It seems to me it’s time for each one of us to identify and challenge a small piece of the human foolishness around us, and work to improve the situation, by demanding that the perpetrators “Stop Doing Stupid!”

 Via email


We're racist towards robots, too, study finds

All this shows is that Africans have made the colour brown a danger sign

Have you ever wondered why you rarely see a brown or black robot?
A couple of researchers at Monash University in Melbourne and Canterbury University in New Zealand were having trouble finding any — why were all the robots white?

It led them to investigate whether people ascribe race to robots, and if this changed their behaviour towards them. What they discovered was that humans carry their racial biases over to robots.

"If you ask anybody, 'Are you racist?' of course they will say no," said Dr Christoph Bartneck, one of the study's authors and a professor at the Human Interface Technology Lab at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand.

Instead, the researchers adapted a research tool called the "shooter bias" paradigm.

This is where the participants are asked to play the role of a police officer.

They are then shown images of people and they have to decide whether to shoot at the person or not.

In the original study, participants were shown images of people who were either white or black, armed or unarmed.

In this study, participants were also shown robots with two "skin" colours.

"What we observed is that the exact same bias observed with humans can also be observed with robots," Professor Bartneck told RN Drive. "People changed their behaviour towards brown robots in comparison to white robots."

Professor Bartneck said the race of the participant did not play a role.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


29 July, 2018  

Study concludes Conservatives are more likely to live meaningful lives

No surprise.  Leftists spend all their time whining about how unfair the world is

According to a recent University of California study, conservatives tend to find more purpose and meaning in their lives.

Published in the Social Psychological and Personality Science journal last month and led by lead researcher David Newman, a doctoral candidate at USC Dornsife’s Mind and Society Center, the study was in itself an examination of five other studies.

Newman’s team specifically examined the feelings of purpose and meaning that 50,000 participants across 16 countries had reported over a 40-year span.

What his team found was that being conservative more often than not correlated with being driven by a purpose in life and experiencing a sense of meaning. Newman warned though that the results of his study should not be misused to issue automatic judgments of others.

“It doesn’t mean that every conservative finds a lot of meaning in their life and that every liberal is depressed,” he said.

He also noted that other factors play a role as well: “These factors range from various personal characteristics such as how religious someone is to situational influences such as one’s current mood.”

True, but the results do suggest that conservatives are more likely to find meaning in their lives. Why, though, might this be? Listen to the following segment of Fox News’ “The Greg Gutfeld Show” to hear some possible reasons:

George Murdoch, also known as the wrestler Tyrus, said something interesting toward the end of the clip.

“If you watch or skim through … any liberal TV show or news program, it’s Armageddon. It’s horrible. It’s like misery’s in your house and there’s a little guy breaking your ankles. They’re all sad,” he said.

“They’re just miserable, and we’re like, ‘We won, we’re making money, I’m pop-locking it home.’ It’s a good time if you’re working hard and paying your bills and stuff. And if you’re not, you’re miserable. I’m not saying all Democrats don’t work, but I’m just saying there’s a certain group of them who prefer things done for them, and they’re pretty upset right now.”

He had a valid point, but not in regard to the left’s reaction to President Donald Trump’s election. Trump just stepped into office a year ago, and since the study covers a 40-year span, he’s ultimately irrelevant to the study’s results.

But what Tyrus said later about Democrats preferring “things done for them” hit the nail on the head. Conservatives find joy and meaning in working hard, fulfilling their obligations, taking care of their families and, in some cases, adhering to a religious faith. And while not every liberal is a welfare-consuming secularists, many leftists do readily subscribe to attitudes of victimhood and entitlement.

Recall that it’s the left that tries to drum up support among women, minorities and the youth by encouraging them to adopt a victim mentality and offering them freebies like free tuition, free healthcare, free housing, free meals.

The problem is that it’s by earning the fruits of one’s labor that people find meaning. When people instead get everything handed to them, there’s no sense of accomplishment, no pride from a job well done. There’s just an empty pit devoid of purpose and meaning.

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Some Trump ideas worth stealing

A tribute to Trump's cleverness from Boston liberal Alex Beam

What is Trump doing that the next president will want to emulate? If you answer, “Nothing!” you are wrong. There is plenty to learn, even from this train wreck of a presidency.

* The tweets. These work, undeniably. No future president will be expected to tweet day and night about his favorite sycophantic TV show, or routinely misspell words of over three syllables. But these mini-press releases pack a lot of power, and Trump has successfully weaponized them.

I followed the Obama White House Twitter feed and it was mainly anodyne junk, e.g., “Watch @POTUS and @FLOTUS welcome Singapore PM @leehsienlong and Mrs. Lee for tonight’s State Dinner.” I can see the next president hiring some with-it 28-year-old to keep the Twitter feed spicy, unboring, and engaged.

* The rolling pardons. Yes, this is cheap sensationalism, but it’s cheap sensationalism that works. The tawdry spectacle of rich crumbums lining up at the White House door to suborn the outgoing president (See Bill Clinton’s pardoning of Marc Rich via Eric Holder) in the final days of an administration is disgusting.

Trump has changed the rules. There is a lot of room for creativity here, and Trump’s posthumous pardon of boxer Jack Johnson opened an interesting door. We know history is rich with miscarriages of justice directed against Native Americans for defending their lands and against African-Americans for all manners of imagined crimes.

You could combine long-overdue restorative justice with a headline-grabbing pardon for (convicted felon) Martha Stewart. Now we’re raising a big tent!

* In-office campaign rallies. Trump isn’t the first president to hold campaign-style events early in his tenure — Obama and George W. Bush held similar pep rallies — but “he’s just more upfront about it,” as The Washington Post observed last year. Unlike his predecessors, Trump filed papers to create his reelection campaign committee on the day of his inauguration.

Why pretend? Trump is better at campaigning than governing, and his canned events outside of Washington get plenty of coverage. That lesson won’t be lost on his successors.

What else? Trump has annoyed the Obama fan base by undoing some of his predecessor’s most ambitious executive orders, e.g. Trump’s radical rollback, by almost 2 million acres, of two national monuments created by his Democratic predecessors.

The lesson? Live by extra-legislative fiat, die by extra-legislative fiat. To paraphrase Matthew 19:6, what one president hath put together, another president can easily rend asunder.

Trump has plenty of tricks up his sleeve, and some of them are worth copying.



Americans have constitutional right to carry guns in public for self-defense, appeals court rules

Americans must have a constitutional right to carry a firearm in public for self-defense, a federal appeals court ruled Tuesday, delivering a major legal victory to gun-rights supporters.

A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said Hawaii’s law severely restricting carrying of firearms to homes and businesses “eviscerates a core Second Amendment right.”

In an opinion that covers the breadth of thought from Geoffrey Chaucer to the country’s founders, Judge Diarmuid F. O’Scannlain, who wrote the majority opinion in the 2-1 ruling, said that while the government can limit concealed carry, it cannot ban weapons outside the home altogether — so public open-carry must be allowed.

Judge O’Scannlain said there’s little doubt the framers of the Second Amendment were comfortable with Americans openly carrying weapons for self defense, and until the Constitution is changed, that remains the standard.

“For better or for worse, the Second Amendment does protect a right to carry a firearm in public for self-defense,” the judge wrote.

The case could be appealed to the full 9th Circuit, frequently cited as the most liberal appeals court in the country,



Show your support for ICE

Some have defined a fanatic as “One who can’t change his opinion and won’t change the subject.” (It is often attributed to Winston Churchill, though the truth appears to be more complicated.) By that definition, I am a fanatic when it comes to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency—aka: “ICE.”

As most readers likely know, across the Left there is a greater and greater clamouring to abolish ICE entirely. Just last month Socialist darling Bernie Sanders would not go on the record as saying ICE should go the way of the Works Progress Administration, but with an eye on the 2020 Presidential race, he has since caved. [Bernie Abolishes His Opposition to "Abolish Ice", by Ethan Epstein, The Weekly Standard, July 17, 2018.] Remember that in 2015 (as in three years ago) he called Open-Borders “a right-wing proposal, which says essentially there is no United States… It would make everybody in America poorer—you're doing away with the concept of a nation state, and I don't think there's any country in the world that believes in that…” .

Meanwhile, Kamala Harris, California’s freshman senator and another strong contender for 2020, has been flip-flopping and equivocating like crazy. In March she said:

Should ICE exist? Well, certainly. When we’re talking about people who’ve committed serious and violent crimes–you know... I’m a prosecutor. I believe there need to be serious, severe and swift consequences when people commit serious and violent crimes…and certainly if they are undocumented, they should be deported if they commit those serious and violent offenses. So, yes, ICE has a purpose. ICE has a role. ICE should exist. But let’s not abuse the power.

[Dem Senator Kamala Harris Slammed for Defending the Existence of ICE (VIDEO), by Colin Kalmbacher, Law and Crime, March 10, 2018.]

But that did not go over well with the new Socialist wing of the Democratic Party, and boy did they let her know. Come June, she was more prepared to say the right thing:

I think there’s no question that we’ve got to critically re-examine ICE, and its role, and the way that it is being administered, and the work it is doing. And we need to probably think about starting from scratch.

[Kamala Harris Says Congress Needs To Change ICE, Perhaps ‘Start From Scratch’, by Paul Blumenthal, The Huffington Post, June 25, 2018.]

Nevertheless, much of the Left is now unimpressed with this, because Harris did not use the word “abolish.” They are still hammering at the Senator for not going far enough [Kamala Harris Wants You To Know She's Definitely Not Calling For Abolishing ICE, by Molly Hensley-Clancy and Lissandra Villa, BuzzFeed News, July 3, 2018.]

It will be interesting to see how this all-but-official-presidential candidate “evolves” on the issue between now and when the Democratic nomination process really gets going.

Like me, the anti-ICE radicals of the Left are fanatics—they will not change their minds, and they are not going to change the subject. That is a good thing. I hope they continue to talk about this as frequently as possible, as their position is completely insane.

As even Sen. Harris pointed out in her first response, ICE targets the worst of the worst, and does great work. Patriots, politicians and pundits alike, need to be highlighting this as regularly as ICE announces each great action they take.

Let’s take a look at some of the monsters ICE has recently played a role in apprehending, arresting, convicting, and/or deporting:

                                               ICE is nice white background

So, why would figures who bill themselves as champions of poor, ordinary, and working Americans want to abolish an agency that puts away criminals who are most likely to prey on our most vulnerable citizens? It is a question worth pondering.

In the meantime, you can show your support for ICE, and help VDARE.com do the same, by making a donation today, and getting yourself an “ICE is Nice” or “Abolish Open Borders” sticker.

Via email


Another Trump win over critics

The United States hit its highest economic growth rate in roughly four years on Friday — something many economists predicted would never happen.

Gross domestic product (GDP) grew to a 4.1-percent rate in the second quarter of 2018, compared to just 2.8 percent in the second quarter of 2017.

Meanwhile, CNN ran a headline in October of 2016 claiming, “Donald Trump promises 4-percent growth, but economists say no way,” and the Los Angeles Times ran a column with an even more dire prediction — that Trump was “dreaming” to think he could hit a 3-percent growth rate.

“An aging population and stagnant productivity could put Donald Trump’s goal of 3.5-percent economic growth out of reach,” the Wall Street Journal similarly wrote in December of 2016.

Businessman and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban predicted that the markets would tank if Trump were elected president in 2016.

And, of course, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warned that the economy would fare quite poorly under her 2016 opponent.

“Just like he shouldn’t have his finger on the button, he shouldn’t have his hands on our economy,” Clinton said during the election.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


27 July, 2018  

Trump is taking US down the path to tyranny (?)

I rather like reading the writings of Leftist intellectual Prof. Jeffrey Sachs.  He always sounds so calm and rational.  But he is director of the Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University so you know that he is also gullible and good at self deception.  But he always puts up a plausible case for whatever he is pushing.  He would probably convince most people who don't know the facts he leaves out.  In true Leftist style he only tells half the story and runs very close to outright lies by what he leaves out.

I could challenge almost every sentence of what he writes below but I have no desire to clean out the Augean stables so will offer just a few comments on the first few paragraphs of his latest essay below.

How does he know that "Trump holds the grandiose belief that only he should rule America"?  Does Sachs have a mind-reading machine?Is Sachs talking about the man who vowed to use his "pen and phone" to circumvent Congress?  No.  That was King Obama.  Trump by contrast has been punctilious in wiping out regulations that tended to circumvent Congress.  Trump is in fact very respectful of Congress.

Next we hear that Trump is good at keeping confidential the substance of sensitive negotiations?  That is bad?

The next big laugh is that "Trump abrogated the Iran nuclear deal despite its unanimous support by the UN Security Council".  The Security Council?  How relevant is that?  What about Congress?  Congress did not ratify the so-called treaty so once again Trump is siding with Congress.

The next bit of Sachs deception is an outright lie:  "Trump used executive authority without Congressional mandate to impose a travel ban on several Muslim-majority states".  Congress HAD given Presidents that power years ago, a power that Obama used among others.

OK.  One last bit of nonsense and I am done.  "Trump changed the status quo regarding Jerusalem against the will of the UN Security Council and UN General Assembly."  Once again Sachs quotes the United Nations instead of Congress. Trump was in fact simply obeying a law passed by Congress.  Once again Trump went along with Congress rather than defying it.  Sachs is talking a quite  amazing heap of manure. It just keeps pouring out.  He has got the truth exactly backwards. There is no truth in him. (John 8:44)

The United States was born in a revolt against the tyranny of King George III. The Constitution was designed to prevent tyranny through a system of checks and balances, but in President Trump's America, those safeguards are failing.

Donald Trump holds the grandiose belief that only he should rule America. Unchecked by cowed or complicit Republicans in Congress, Trump invokes executive authority to alter policies and practices long established by law and treaty.

Days after his summit meeting with Vladimir Putin, no one knows what the two autocrats agreed to, or even talked about -- not the President's top aides, nor the Pentagon, nor security establishment or Congress, never mind the rest of us. And in the midst of the ensuing uproar, Trump has invited Putin to Washington, without telling his top intelligence official and no doubt most other key aides and officials.

The list of one-man actions grows rapidly. Trump is single-handedly imposing hundreds of billions of dollars of tariffs -- that is, taxes -- on imported goods from key US allies and China, without any explicit or implicit Congressional backing.

Trump abrogated the Iran nuclear deal despite its unanimous support by the UN Security Council. Trump is in the process of imposing new and severe sanctions against Iran, including the cutoff of all of Iran's oil exports, against the international agreement with Iran and with no vote of Congress, presumably to try to topple the Iranian regime.

Not surprisingly, and perhaps as intended, Trump's drumbeat of belligerency triggered an ominous warning from Iran, and now an escalation from Trump, casting the increasingly ominous confrontation with Iran as yet another one-man Trump show.

Trump used executive authority without Congressional mandate to impose a travel ban on several Muslim-majority states; to announce the US withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement despite treaty-bound US obligations under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change; and to change the status quo regarding Jerusalem against the will of the UN Security Council and UN General Assembly. Trump extended the stay of US troops in Syria without oversight or approval by Congress.



Another win!  Trump trumps the EU

President Trump struck a trade deal Wednesday with the European Union, reaping significant concessions as top E.U. officials moved to avoid an escalating tariff war with the U.S., according to early reports.

The deal involved the E.U. importing more U.S. soybeans, lowering industrial tariffs and working on an agreement to import more liquified natural gas (LNG) from America, according to a Dow Jones report.

The deal followed a high-stakes meeting between Mr. Trump and E.U. Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker.

The two leaders faced off over escalating dispute over tariffs and trade barriers that block U.S. goods. The big dispute is over cars, with Mr. Trump threatening massive tariffs on if for the E.U. didn’t lower high tariffs on cars.

Expectations of the announced deal, with reporters summoned to the Rose Garden for an announcement, sent the stock market soaring. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed more than 170 points after being down about 50 points early in the afternoon.



Ignore Media’s Trump Hysteria, Look at ‘Remarkable’ Things He’s Actually Done

With the intensity with which those on the left despise President Donald Trump and his policies, and the constant barrage of negative news coverage about the president since he took office, you would think the country is on the verge of chaos.

If that were the case, can somebody explain why the stock market has surged roughly 41 percent from the night Trump won the presidential election to today?

After all, anyone with even a casual knowledge of the markets knows they are extremely sensitive to signs of uncertainty and turmoil. If we hear all of this noise from the media and Democrats about how the country is divided, facing an uncertain future and every other doomsday prediction, why isn’t Wall Street paying attention?

Because Wall Street looks at things in a different light than most individuals. Money is not a Republican or Democratic asset. Who the president is doesn’t trigger unrealistic emotions — either for or against.

Kevin O’Leary, noted investor and one of the stars of ABC’s “Shark Tank,” says when you cut through all of the noise surrounding Trump’s presidency, he’s doing some “remarkable” things to help businesses, specifically the cutting of regulations.

“I would say on a policy basis, I’m going to have to give it an 8 1/2 out of 10 so far,” O’Leary told Hill.TV’s Buck Sexton of the Trump administration’s performance to date.

“The reduction of regulations has been remarkable in how it has accelerated small business,” he said. “These things are quietly being changed, and I really — I credit the administration for doing this. They’re making it easier to run a small business in pretty well every state I’m involved in. So that’s working.”

In an Op-Ed O’Leary penned for The Hill.com, he heaped more praise on the administration and said the markets are very confident in the president’s economic plans.

Part of that confidence, O’Leary said, is based on looking at the facts of what Trump is doing in terms of fundamental business policies, not the emotions social issues generate.

“Trump is like no president before him: not good, not bad, but different,” O’Leary wrote. “Want to manage through the turmoil? Here is a better strategy. Ignore the noise and watch the policy.”

O’Leary credits Trump with putting in place competent economic managers such as Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, Director Larry Kudlow and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. O’Leary says deregulation and tax reforms are already a done deal, and trade is the next item on the agenda.

“Their message is clear: They are going to keep ratcheting up tariffs until the eurozone and China come to the table,” O’Leary said. “They care about the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Asian trade protocol, too, but these have been pushed to the back burner while they focus on the big dogs, China and Europe.”

The president is receiving steady criticism for his tough stances on trade, but if his policies were really that bad, the markets would reflect that, O’Leary said.

“So why has the market not corrected, and why have many stocks continued to hit all-time historic highs?” he asked. “Because the potential to equalize tariffs has such tremendous economic upside for the U.S. economy, investors are willing to put up with pain even if the chance of success is only 50 percent or less.”

And the markets are willing to put up with a lot of pain if the payoff is worth it, O’Leary said.

“The markets know this is not going to happen overnight, but the upside is so enticing that it is willing to wait,” he said.

O’Leary said that rather than judge a president or other politicians based on whether they have an “R” or “D” after their name, those in the business world know it’s best to look at the steak, and not the sizzle.

“My best advice in these extraordinary times? Tune out the circus and focus on the policy that actually gets implemented,” O’Leary said.

It’s hard for critics of the president to tune out the circus when it seems to have taken up permanent residence in their heads. But you can bet there are some hardcore liberals who are embarrassed to admit just how nice their 401k statements have looked since Trump took office.



Liberal war on work

Once upon a time, work for welfare was a pretty accepted notion. In 1996, Bill Clinton signed a strict workfare bill that was so popular, it helped him get re-elected. A Brookings Institute study by welfare scholar Ron Haskins proved those reforms moved more than half of those on welfare (mostly young single moms) into the workforce, and millions eventually gained economic self-sufficiency.

If ever there were a public policy triumph, this was it.

During Barack Obama’s first term, those reforms were pretty much eviscerated. The recession was so deep the poverty lobby argued that there were no jobs for the welfare recipients to fill. Moreover, enrollment in the non-work requirement welfare programs, such as food stamps, Medicaid, disability and housing assistance, exploded.

Even as the unemployment rate fell, food stamps, Medicaid and disability enrollment remained at near-record highs. Is it a coincidence that during the Obama presidency, as welfare ballooned, workforce participation rates for those in the prime working ages fell dramatically?

The panoply of more than 20 welfare programs has become a substitute, not a supplement, for work. A Cato Institute studies showed that the full package of federal and state welfare benefits could deliver a family with more than $30,000 of benefits — tax and work-free. Why work?

Earlier this year, Republicans in Congress and the Trump administration tried to add a fairly modest work provision for able-bodied adults in the food stamps financing bill. Democrats en masse voted against the bill to stop workfare. This was more sad evidence that the “new Democrats” of the 1990s have vanished from the landscape.

Some Democrats have equated workfare to a form of “slavery.” By the way, the hard left made these same kind of over-the-top accusations in the mid-1990s about the Clinton work requirements, predicting “blood in the streets” if the bill passed. There was no blood in the streets.

The latest chapter in this story comes in the form of a new study by the White House Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) report which finds that only about one in five able-bodied recipients of food stamps and Medicaid work full time. This is scandalous given that today jobs are plentiful and in most states employers are begging for workers.

“These low employment rates of non-disabled working-age recipients” the CEA report concludes, “suggest that legislative changes requiring them to work and supporting their transition into the laborforce for Food Stamps and Medicaid would have positive effects on work participation and self-sufficiency.”

Liberals have denounced the CEA report by regurgitating the same discredited arguments used in 1996 that millions of Americans will lose their benefits and poverty rates will soar. Jared Bernstein, a former Obama economist, wrote that the proposal shows that Republicans care more about rich donors than poor people. The Daily Kos headline shouted that Republicans have replaced the War on Poverty with a “war on poor people.”

The left says that pretty much everyone on welfare who can be working is working. Raise your hand if you believe this. Incidentally, the work requirement for food stamps that Republicans are pushing would only apply to about one-in-five on welfare. My view is that just because someone has a disability doesn’t mean they can’t contribute. This is like saying a girl can’t throw a football. Nearly every town in America needs Uber drivers and I’ve often been picked up by “disabled” drivers.

What I don’t get is why the left is so knee-jerk opposed to work. The CEA report makes a very valid point that there are “pecuniary and non-pecuniary gains” when people get off welfare and into work. There is dignity and pride in a job well done and earning a paycheck.

Not so in the moral and financial dead end of a welfare check. The left’s latest idea to end poverty is to give every American a guaranteed family income. Mr. Trump wants to give everyone a job. The Democrats want to give the poor a fish. Mr. Trump wants to teach people to fish so they can eat for a lifetime. I suspect the American public is solidly behind Mr. Trump in this public policy fight and Republicans would be wise to double down on work requirements to convert welfare into a hand up, not a hand-out.



CA: Rearmed Pillage People Ride Again

 Back in 1990, Gilbert Hyatt invented the first single-chip microprocessor, which earned him a lot of money, so he moved to Nevada, which has no state income tax. California’s Franchise Tax Board (FTB) claimed Hyatt lied about his residency, and that he owed millions in state income taxes.

Despite a 2008 ruling in his favor by a Nevada court, FTB snoops kept after the inventor. By the time his case arrived at California’s Board of Equalization last August, the FTB was claiming that interest had run up Hyatt’s tab to $55 million. Trouble was, a 3-2 vote by California’s Board of Equalization determined that Gilbert Hyatt was indeed a Nevada resident when state tax collectors said he lied about his residency.

So the BOE waived $5.7 million in fraud penalties and $5.7 million in taxes from 1992, That left Gilbert Hyatt with a 1991 tax bill of $1.9 million, including interest, a far cry from $55 million. California’s pillage people didn’t like it and are now deploying in new uniforms.

Governor Jerry Brown and the legislature gutted the BOE and empowered the Office of Tax Appeals, a new state agency. As Dan Walters of CALmatters reports, “the FTB is now trying to persuade the new agency to reopen the residency case.” So Hyatt, who turns 81 this year, may be in store for more harassment on top of the many years he already endured. And he may not be the only target. As Walters also notes, in June the U.S. Supreme Court “granted the FTB’s petition to decide whether Hyatt’s successful harassment case in Nevada courts is valid.”

New federal tax law limits the deductibility of California’s state income tax, highest in the nation. Many will surely flee to low-tax states and Nevada’s ruling in favor of Hyatt shows they will be welcome. That displeases California’s rearmed pillage people, not exactly a gang of good losers. How this all shakes out for the tax refugees and Mr. Hyatt is uncertain, but for taxpayers some realities are clear.

Creating an innovative product people want to buy can earn an inventor lots of money. Those who want to keep most of the money they earn are not displaying greed. Greed is what motivates politicians to punish the productive with the nation’s highest taxes. Greed is what motivates state agencies to waste millions of dollars pursuing revenues to which they are not entitled. As California’s militant Franchise Tax Board and Office of Tax Appeals confirm, government greed is truly fathomless.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


26 July, 2018  

Trump runs North Korea playbook in feud with Iran

The interpretation of Trump's warning to Iran below is pretty right but it misses out another element of the equation. Trump is indeed trying to terrorize Iran verbally, just as he initially did with the Norks but that is only half of his strategy.  With the Norks, Trump piled on the pressure by being nice to President Xi and thus getting China to pressure the Norks.  China seems to have cut off most of North Korea's oil supply, for instance.  So Mr Kim HAD to cave.

And what has Trump just done before heavying Iran? Made nice with President Putin.  So he has confidence that Putin won't come to the rescue of Iran.  Russia has in the past given some assistance to Iran: Their nuclear reactor, for instance.  So Trump's strategy is as good as anything in Vom Kriege by Clausewitz. He has both launched a frontal attack on Iran and cut off their retreat.

It's possible that the whole Helsinki show was in order to clear the decks: To ensure that Putin would stay neutral in any conflict with Iran. With Obama's nuclear deal with Iran now off the table, Trump had to do something to "solve" Iran and this may be his opening move

The White House blamed Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Monday for provoking warlike threats from President Trump, as the administration sought to step up economic and political pressure on Iran in a campaign similar to the strategy that brought North Korea to the nuclear bargaining table.

Gearing up to implement tough economic sanctions on an Iranian economy that is already faltering, Mr. Trump and his top advisers also have made it clear to Iran’s leaders in the past two days that the U.S. will no longer sit back quietly in the face of Tehran’s typical “death to America” rhetoric and other threats.


It was reminiscent of Mr. Trump’s “fire and fury” warning to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un last summer.

Mr. Trump fired this online shot across the bow after the Iranian leader declared in Tehran, “America must understand well that peace with Iran is the mother of all peace, and war with Iran is the mother of all wars.”

Liberals accused Mr. Trump of attempting to pivot away from negative media coverage of his summit last week with Russian President Vladimir Putin by threatening war against another longtime U.S. adversary in the Middle East.

“President Trump’s belligerent tweet is another alarming warning sign that he’s blundering toward war with Iran,” said Sen. Tim Kaine, Virginia Democrat and co-author of a 2015 law that gave Congress the right to review the Iranian nuclear deal before congressional sanctions could be lifted. “The prospect of President Trump starting a catastrophic war should concern us all, and we must be vigilant in stopping it.”

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Mr. Trump has been tougher on Iran than President Obama since the beginning of his presidency and that his latest comments were consistent with his approach to Tehran, which included pulling out of the nuclear deal last spring.

“The president’s responding to Iran, and he’s not going to allow them to continue to make threats against America,” Mrs. Sanders said. “If anybody is inciting anything, look no further than to Iran.”

Asked by reporters Monday afternoon whether he had any concerns about provoking tensions with Iran, Mr. Trump replied, “None at all.”

Mr. Rouhani scoffed at Mr. Trump’s threat to halt Iranian oil exports and said Iran has a dominant position in the Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz, a major oil shipping waterway. Washington later eased its stance, saying it might grant sanction waivers to some allies.

In reaction to Iran’s threats, the U.S. military has renewed its pledge to secure free flow of oil from the strait. However, at least as of last week, the Pentagon said those Iranian threats had not led the U.S. military to reposition or add to forces in the Middle East.

“We haven’t adjusted our force posture in response to any of those statements. And I don’t think that’s warranted. I wouldn’t recommend that,” John Rood, undersecretary of defense for policy, told a security forum in Colorado on Friday.

James Jay Carafano, a national security specialist at The Heritage Foundation, said the president was expressing himself to Tehran “in a uniquely Trumpian manner.”

“No one should doubt the U.S. resolve to protect its interests,” Mr. Carafano said. “The president was not afraid to use force in Syria. Clearly, he would do so here, but only if provoked on the ground — he is not going to be cowed or impressed by threats from Tehran. On the other hand, he is not going to be reckless in the use of force, but I imagine if the Iranians thought about trying something, the tweet was a reminder they won’t get away with it.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is bitterly opposed to Iran, praised Mr. Trump’s “strong stance.” Germany said threats of war were “never helpful.”

With popular discontent over Iran’s faltering economy and sliding currency, and the prospect of tough new U.S. sanctions, Iran’s leaders have called for unity.

The Iranian rial plunged to a record low against the U.S. dollar on the unofficial market on Monday amid fears of military confrontation between Iran and the United States. The dollar was being offered for as much as 92,000 rials, compared with about 75,000 last week.

While Washington prepares to reimpose economic sanctions on Tehran after pulling out of the nuclear deal, Iran’s faction-ridden religious and political elites have closed ranks against Mr. Trump’s hawkish approach.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the administration will never stop calling out Iran for its human rights abuses, religious persecution and fomenting of terrorism.

“Sometimes it seems the world has become desensitized to the regime’s authoritarianism at home and its campaigns of violence abroad, but the proud Iranian people are not staying silent about their government’s many abuses,” Mr. Pompeo said in a speech at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum in California. “And the United States under President Trump will not stay silent either. In light of these protests and 40 years of regime tyranny, I have a message for the people of Iran: The United States hears you; the United States supports you; the United States is with you.”



The Greatest Hysteria in American History

You and I are living through the greatest mass hysteria in American history. For many Americans, the McCarthy era held that dubious distinction, but what is happening now is incomparably worse.

For one thing, any hysteria that existed then was directed against the greatest evil in the world at the time: communism. Then-Sen. Joseph McCarthy and the House Un-American Activities Committee notwithstanding, there really were Americans in important positions who supported communist regimes enslaving their populations and committing mass murder. McCarthy was on to something.

In contrast, the country is choking on hysteria over the extremely unlikely possibility — for which there is still no evidence — that Donald Trump’s campaign colluded with the Russian government to meddle in the 2016 presidential election, and the absurdity that President Trump works for Russian President Vladimir Putin.

For another, the mainstream media did not support McCarthy. Most in the media were highly critical of McCarthy. Today, the mainstream media are not the voices of caution. They are the creators of the hysteria. There have been conspiracy theories throughout American history (e.g. Lee Harvey Oswald didn’t kill President John F. Kennedy alone; the moon landing never happened). But this is the first time the media have created and promoted a conspiracy. Not surprisingly, they have dropped any pretense of objective reporting in the process.

And while some Americans were unfairly labeled communists during the McCarthy era, countless Democratic politicians and leaders in news and entertainment have called members of the Trump administration and the tens of millions of Americans who support the president fascists, white supremacists, haters, xenophobes, and even Nazis.

MSNBC contributor Jill Wine-Banks said of the Trump-Putin Helsinki press conference: “It’s just as serious to me as the Cuban Missile Crisis in terms of an attack, or the 9/11 attack. … [Trump’s] performance today will live in infamy as much as the Pearl Harbor attack or Kristallnacht.”

Former communist, Obama operative, and CIA Director John Brennan tweeted: “Donald Trump’s press conference performance in Helsinki rises to & exceeds the threshold of ‘high crimes & misdemeanors.’ It was nothing short of treasonous.”

The constant invoking of the Holocaust, the Nazis, and now Kristallnacht (the unofficial beginning of the Holocaust, a night in 1938 when German Jews were beaten to death, synagogues were burned, and Jewish shops were destroyed) only minimizes the evils of Nazism and the Holocaust. A young American who, having gone to a typical university, probably knows nothing about the Nazis and the Holocaust will now think Nazism and the Holocaust were 20th-century expressions of Trump and American conservatism.

All this hysteria is built on next to nothing. At its core, it is an attempt to undo the 2016 election. The mainstream media refuse to accept that Hillary Clinton lost. They said she would win — handily. They predicted a landslide. How could they have possibly gotten it so wrong? Their answer is they didn’t; Trump and Putin stole it.

If truth mattered to the media, their ongoing narrative would be: “Democrats and the Left still do not accept Trump victory.”

If truth mattered to the media, every American would know Trump has been harder on Russia than former President Barack Obama was. Every American would be reminded that Obama reassured Putin’s right-hand man, then-Russian President Dmitri Medvedev, that he wouldn’t be too tough on Russia. Thinking his mic was off, he whispered into Medvedev’s ear: “This is my last election. After my election, I have more flexibility.”

If truth mattered to the media, every American would be reminded that Obama sent Army meals to Ukraine and Trump has sent anti-tank missiles and other arms to repel the Russians.

If truth mattered to the media, every American would be reminded that Obama watched Syria burn and Russia come to dominate that country, while Trump has bombed Syrian military installations, including one where Russians were killed.

If truth mattered to the media, every American would be reminded that it is Trump who has weakened Russia’s ally Iran, while Obama immeasurably strengthened it.

Instead the media scream “treason,” “impeachment,” and the like 24/7; Hollywood stars curse the president; others curse his daughter or the first lady (one of the most regal in American history) and show President Trump in various death poses. Meanwhile, leftist mobs shout at administration officials and Republican members of Congress while they eat in restaurants, shop in stores, and sleep in their homes.

If you vote Democrat this November, you are voting for hysteria, lies, socialism, and even the cheapening of the Holocaust.

But more than anything, a vote for Democrats in November is a vote for hysteria — the greatest and darkest in American history.



Trump offers help to farmers hit by escalating China trade war

This is a big signal to say that Trump is sticking to his guns in getting tariffs against American goods removed or reduced

As President Donald Trump embarks on a multistate tour through parts of the country hit heavily by trade battles, his administration said Tuesday it will direct $12 billion to farmers whose harvests have been hurt by tariffs.

But the idea faced immediate criticism from Republicans on Capitol Hill.

Responding to farm groups and the Republican discontent, administration officials said they have been working since April on a short-term plan to shore up slipping prices for soybeans, pork and other crops hit with retaliatory tariffs from China.

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue described the programs as "a firm statement that other nations cannot bully our agricultural producers to force the United States to cave in.”

But the idea drew sharp and immediate criticism from some Republicans on Capitol Hill, who described it as "welfare" for one sector of the economy affected by the tit-for-tat raising of trade barriers that has been ushered in by Trump.

"This trade war is cutting the legs out from under farmers," said Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb. "The best relief for the president’s trade war would be ending the trade war."

Perdue described the measures, which do not require congressional approval, as a one-time, short-term effort to give Trump more leverage to negotiate an end to trade disputes with China, Canada, Mexico, the European Union and others.

The USDA-led programs, Perdue said, would include direct payments to farmers, government purchase of crops to be distributed to food banks and attempts to build new export markets to replace those imposing retaliatory tariffs.

Producers of soybeans, sorghum, corn, wheat, cotton, dairy and hogs would benefit from the direct payments, USDA officials said. Fruits, nuts, rice, legumes, beef, pork and milk could be purchased for distribution to food-aid programs.

The plan to stabilize farmers, some of whom have watched prices tumble amid the trade disputes, is a recognition that Trump’s tariffs are having a short-term impact on the agriculture sector heading into the midterm elections and also that there is no clear end in sight to escalating barriers.

Trump spoke at a VFW convention and attended a fundraiser in Missouri on Tuesday, and he is set to visit Iowa and Illinois later this week.

In a tweet before leaving the White House on Tuesday, the president said that "Tariffs are the greatest!" and reiterated his argument that current trade policy disadvantages U.S. farmers and manufacturers. Speaking to veterans in Kansas City, Missouri, the president urged farmers to "just be a little patient."

"The farmers will be the biggest beneficiary," Trump said of the trade disputes.

Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, said the USDA programs would give Trump more leverage to negotiate with other countries.

Though he declined to say whether he supports the policy, Hoeven predicted it would make "darn clear to the people we’re negotiating with that we intend to get better trade deals."

Sen. Pat Roberts, a Kansas Republican who chairs the Agriculture Committee, was also noncommittal about the measures.

“Well I think it’s obvious that in farm country there’s a lot of concern," Roberts said. "Those are the folks who brought the president home, and obviously if you’re adding up that kind of situation, why it would impact that.”

Other Republicans were more critical.



Mexican President Delivers Incredible Letter to Trump, Promises a ‘New Stage’ Leftists Will Hate

Those on the left who have been furious with President Donald Trump’s stance on illegal immigration and border security now have another country’s leader to scorn.

And it’s not one you would expect. Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, president-elect of Mexico, released a seven-page letter that he sent to Trump earlier this month in which he outlined how he hopes the two countries can work together to improve security at their border and discourage migration from Mexico.

“There will be many changes,” he promised in the letter. “And in this new atmosphere of progress with well-being, I’m sure we can reach agreements to confront together the migration phenomenon as well as the problem of border insecurity.”

Marcelo Ebrard, the president-elect’s proposed foreign minister, read a copy of the letter at a news conference with Lopez Obrador Sunday that said the incoming administration’s aim is to “start a new chapter in the relationship between Mexico and the United States, based on mutual respect.”

Lopez Obrador takes office Dec. 1. He’s already spoken by phone with Trump and met with some U.S. officials, such as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, to begin opening lines of communication between the U.S. and his administration.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


25 July, 2018  

Success of Trump-Putin summit to prevent nuclear war between U.S. and Russia missed by establishment amid hysteria over hacking

By Robert Romano

If one did not know any better, he or she might conclude that the single most important function of the President of the United States is to secure the computer email systems of the nation’s privately run major political parties against intrusion by foreign intelligence agencies.

Or, that the only topic of importance that was discussed at the Helsinki, Finland summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin on July 16 was charges brought by Special Counsel Robert Mueller against Russia’s GRU for hacking the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and John Podesta emails and publishing them on Wikileaks on 2016.

Such is the hysterical world that we live in today. Believe it or not, however, the President, whoever occupies the office, really does have even more important issues to contend with. Don’t believe me?

When it comes to U.S.-Russian relations, there are very real geopolitical issues between the two countries, the world’s foremost nuclear powers, where cooperation between the two presidents could bring about better outcomes than conflict.

That is the major reason to have a summit. In short, to prevent war, but more broadly, to address differences and, if possible, to find areas of agreement.

Fortunately for everyone, President Trump did find those areas of agreement.

On nuclear proliferation, current disagreements between the two powers over the implementation of the 1987 Intermediate Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, which banned all nuclear weapons with ranges from 310 and 3,420 miles, were reportedly addressed. Both the U.S. and Russia have said each side is in violation of the treaty with the development of ground-based missile systems banned by the treaty.

For the uninitiated, the INF Treaty is the bedrock of the U.S.-Russian nuclear arms control regime. It was Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev’s crowning diplomatic achievement and signaled the coming end of the Cold War. It set the stage for the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) of 1991. These two treaties were the first ever reductions of nuclear weapons.

So, the fact that the agreements are now failing would be a matter of concern for not just the U.S. and Russia, but for the entire world, because they threaten world peace. A new nuclear arms race would be a catastrophe. It would also be an urgent matter for the U.S. and Russian presidents to address, which, thankfully, they did when they met on July 16.

Now, it will be up to the national security councils of both nations to follow up and see about bringing each side into compliance with the INF Treaty. No new agreement is needed. Simply implementation of the existing treaty, which calls for monitors, analysis and demonstrations to test the ranges of the missile systems.

Other areas of agreement came, again on the nuclear front, where Putin was said by Trump to support the President’s agreement with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula. Being a nearby neighbor of North Korea — the two countries share a border of 11 miles — Russia is in a position to apply both pressure and give encouragement to North Korea to make good on its agreement. Russia, a net exporter of petroleum and natural gas, is also in a position to factor into the sanctions regime.

Again, achieving agreement here on Korean denuclearization is better than not having agreement. This is something that both sides can play a role in facilitating, along with China, and keeping everyone on the same page. It’s helpful to have Russia involved as a positive force. It’s certainly better than if they were actively undermining the agreement.

In Ukraine, the Trump and Putin discussed the implementation of the 2014 Minsk Accords, which is a Russian-Ukrainian agreement to help settle the civil war there. Since that is a location where U.S. and Russian forces could realistically and potentially wind up in armed conflict, it is extremely important that the U.S. and Russia be on the same page.

Elsewhere, the U.S. and Russia via Trump and Putin agreed to work towards the security of Israel’s borders. This follows on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s recent trip to Moscow to discuss Russia helping to keep Iranian forces operating in Syria away from the Syrian-Israeli border.

Obviously, there are many complexities to the situation on the ground in Syria presently, but again, this is an area where Russia could help a lot to defuse the situation and prevent a wider war in the region, which again, could involve the U.S. and Russia at opposite ends. With both U.S. and Russian forces operating in theater, getting deconfliction right is critical. The two sides must be talking.

By the way, there are no guarantees the cooperation between the U.S. and Russia will work out in everyone or even any one of these areas. That really depends a lot on the relationship Trump manages to establish with Putin and how well they can work together.

Scoff if you will, but these talks are utterly necessary. We don’t boycott U.S.-Russian relations just because Hillary Clinton lost an election. Sorry. There’s more at stake than partisan politics.

As President Trump said at the summit, “I would rather take a political risk in pursuit of peace than risk peace in pursuit of politics.”

Yes, the issue of the 2016 hacking was also addressed at the summit by Trump and Putin, but quite honestly, it pales in comparison to the threat of war. Which is more important? Preventing an accidental nuclear war or finding out who sent the spear phishing messages that enabled hackers to access John Podesta’s emails? That’s a rhetorical question, by the way.

Now more than ever, we need to have a president who can initiate a direct, one-on-one conversation with Russia to defuse these conflicts and set the world on a path towards peace and security, not take us to the brink. Right now, that is President Trump. And thank goodness he is doing his job. In the nuclear age, every day we wake up is a gift. Never forget it.



Loonies from the Left

by Ryan Messano

Since the left is full of those who have issues with drug use, and can't contain sex in marriage between a man and a woman, combined with a huge problem with learning and comprehending history, they simply don't understand that their mistakes have been repeated before, and were and always will be, disasters.  In their personal lives, they sacrifice the future on the altar of the immediate, and their policies do the same to societies.  They are termites, eating incessantly away at the home of the American body politic, frantically trying to destroy it from within.

The Peter Strzok hearings were remarkable for showing just how corrupt Democrats are the Praetorian Guard, along with their media and academia, to protect corruption in our nation.  Peter Strzok is about the only person in the world who doesn't know he's biased.  He even stated the definition of bias in response to GOP representative Raul Labrador.   However, he couldn't understand how his own actions were biased.  It's one of the greatest examples I've ever seen of a person being unaware of their own faults when everyone else could see it.  Leftists can't see their own corruption so they naturally defend his corruption. 

Louie Gohmert unloaded on Strzok by going after his smirking and nearly succeeding in wiping his arrogant smirk from his face by wondering aloud how his face looked when he lied to his wife about having an affair with Lisa Page.  Of course, the Democrats were instantly up in arms, squawking about, 'have you no decency', and, 'you need to take your meds'. 

You would think both sides would agree on an egregious case of bias, but the Democrats keep digging their grave even deeper, by frantically ob-Strzok-ting justice.  Trey Gowdy ripped Strzok, rightly so, but Strzok thought he was the injured party.    Peter Strzok also complained about being maligned, and said he did what he did out of honor to America, to defend the honor of Khizr Khan, the Muslim father of a deceased American war Hero, who tried to defend Islam, by pretending it is just like every other religion. 

Islam is definitely not like other religions.  Democrat representative Steve Cohen gave proof that his cheese has slid well off his cracker, by saying that Strzok deserved a Purple Heart for his malfeasance and corruption.  It was a dizzying display that the Democrats are a menace to our society, and everyone who votes Democrat is historically inept and corrupt.

 Dear Reader, the WB liberals are in a bad way, and though they think the opposite is true, they need our sympathy and commiseration, that they can one day awake from the hallucination sensation they are currently experiencing.  Some of them have had some pretty strong drugs, so the delusion is quite strong in more than a few.  They rely on their 'experts', 'popularity', 'anecdotes', 'studies', academic background, and other bogus evaluative techniques to prop up their deceived view of the world.

When Trump met with Putin, he opened by saying whatever happened, he would be criticized for it.  Boy, was he ever right.  The left was naturally up in arms.  I went to the Huffy Puffy and it was completely full of the usual nonsense that we were now Russian puppets.  Whoever pays for these liberal messages believes the Americans are stupid and dumb, and they aren't far off the mark.  John Brennan, the corrupt former CIA head, came out and lectured us that this was treason.

Democrats were gulping their medications frantically.  The fake news media was hysterically losing it's mind.  God forbid Donald Trump actually call out our corrupt intelligence agencies, which still has yet to uncover a shred of Russian collusion in our election, and attempt to make peace with Vladimir Putin, who is actually closer to America's Founding Ideals than that Marxist Snake Barack Obama was. 

America did Russia a huge favor and helped rid it of Communism.  Russia is doing us a favor and delivered us from the near Communist Hillary Clinton, if in fact they did hack the DNC's e-mails, which fact has never been verified. 

Putin has issues encroaching on other nation's, and America still has sanctions on Russia.  But the weakness of Obama invited aggression, as shrinking the American military was a very bad idea.   Leftists think the gubmint is to be Big Daddy to everyone who wants a handout.  These leftists live privileged lives and hate to ever be bothered with the poor, but they will demand Joe Taxpayer be taxed to the hilt to pay for anyone who likes things free.

It has been an eventful past few days, and it will get worse.  The left is raging to get back in power, as power, money, and pleasure are all that matter to them. Their lives, without these three things, mean absolutely  nothing, and so they literally die when deprived of them.

They cloak their greed, lust, and evil with lying pretenses of  helping the poor and punishing the greedy, but deep down, they are every bit as wicked and even more so, than every last wicked deed they try to condemn.  Just examine, dear reader, the language of the WB liberal.  They claim they care about the poor, but they use the filthiest ideas and words to attack those they disagree with.  They use language no sane adult would ever use, especially not in the presence of children.  Then, they and their cohorts, criticize conservatives and give this filthy language a pass.  They are world class hypocrites, and if it weren't for double standards, liberals would have no standards at all.   

Just remember, when the left's ideals rule a nation, the French Revolution happens.  When conservative Christians rule, the American Revolution occurs.



Stare Decisis is Like a Street Sign: "Drive Only On the Left!"

By Rich Kozlovich

I just read Bastasch’s article, "Brett Kavanaugh put a serious damper on EPA power grabs", which gave me more confidence in this man, at least until he ended the article saying this about overturning the Endangerment Finding. He says:

"However, Adler (a professor at Case Western Reserve University School of Law) said it’s unlikely the court overturn Massachusetts v. EPA because of its strong tradition of “stare decisis” — latin for “to stand by things decided.” “It’s one thing to overturn a bad constitutional decision because Congress can’t fix that,” Adler said, though he added a Kennedy-less court could narrow the application of Massachusetts v. EPA. “It’s not going to be overturned,” he said."

For a law professor to say such a thing on such an issue is clearly demonstrating his bias in my opinion, especially since the adoration to "stare decisis" is a one way street for leftists.

I’m not sure how Kavanaugh would vote on a new Endangerment Finding case, but we need to get rid of this idea of “stare decisis” as the deciding factor.

These leftist justices have overturned “stare decisis” over and over again, and have been lauded by the very leftists who claim to adore the concept. Let's try and get this right - "stare decisis" - is not written in stone and the only reason to openly support it as something that’s “sacred” is nothing more than a public relations scam by anyone involved in politics or law. The left only 'adores' the concept if someone supports any of the leftist decisions that overturned "stare decisis" decisions of the past. Any effort to overturn leftist decisions that have no Constitutional basis other than what's called the "penumbra of the Constitution" is sacrilege to the law and the Constitution according to the left.

"In United States constitutional law, the penumbra includes a group of rights derived, by implication, from other rights explicitly protected in the Bill of Rights. These rights have been identified through a process of "reasoning-by-interpolation", where specific principles are recognized from "general idea" that are explicitly expressed in other constitutional provisions......."

An open ended concept that allows for abuse!

The word penumbra originally was a scientific term "created to describe the shadows that occur during eclipses." And I think the word shadows is more than appropriate when its used in relationship with the Constitution.   The "penumbra" of the Constitution "implies" rights not actually written in the Constitution, and in fact the concept allows for the ability to define, redefine and even ignore the actual and simple language of the Constitution, all of which has been done by the federal judiciary at every level. All in an effort to make the Constitution a "Living Document".

The problem with that is all the "living" changes are determined by the wrong branch of government. The Constitution never gave the federal judiciary to right to "legislate" via some indefinable term that's been adopted by those whose one desire is to destroy the Constitution. The unelected Judiciary have overstepped their Constitutional bounds into the territory the Constitution assigns to the Legislature.

It's always amazing how devoted progressives, socialists, leftists and liberals are to the Constitution, when it's convenient. But in reality, this is the document they've called a dusty old document and many early Progressives like Teddy Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson considered an "impediment to human progress".  Nothing has changed!  Any concerns they express about devotion to "stare decisis" is strictly politics.

Now, that brings me back to green issues, Kavanaugh and the Supreme Court. Here’s one thing I don’t think many know and I think could be a big factor in deciding any green issue that comes before SCOTUS.

Who was Justice Neil Gorsuch’s mother?

Ann Burford Gorsuch, a one time head of the EPA during the Reagan administration who was eviscerated by the left and the green movement in and out of government, and those she called "pack journalists." I have no doubt about his view of the leftist swamp Sand their green misanthropic allies.

Will that have an impact on Kavanaugh?    I don't know, except I have no doubt Gorsuch has a much clearer understanding of all these green issues and the people involved than any of the rest.  And I'm confident he has the ability to explain them properly.

As for Breyer, Ginsburg, Kagan and Sotomayor? They're hopeless. They couldn't be convinced day was light or night was dark if it wasn't supportive of some kind of leftist clabber or other.  Not a one of them pass the test of unbiased open mindedness the left demands of Trump's appointments or a rational understanding of what the Constitution really says, often times creating policies that have shattered generations of Americans. 



Summit Smackdown

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced that administration officials are communicating with Russian leaders about a follow-up summit this fall in Washington, DC. Needless to say, the left-wing media went nuts.

What other president would have the courage to do that after the fallout from the Helsinki summit? Donald Trump is fearless and a natural fighter.

Throughout the campaign and much of his presidency, we were told that Trump was stupid and erratic and would get us into a nuclear war. (We heard the same things about Ronald Reagan too.) Now they are attacking Trump because he is trying “too hard” to make peace.

Rush Limbaugh asked a key question. He noted that Trump’s critics keep saying it was outrageous that he did not confront Vladimir Putin during the Helsinki press conference. They have no idea what he said behind closed doors.

But can any of the critics name the date and place of any summit when a U.S. president attacked a foreign leader with whom he was trying to negotiate? They can’t because summits aren’t meant for smackdowns but diplomacy.

The left-wing media keeps saying that Trump won’t follow the rules. But it is the Left that is constantly changing the rules, moving the goal posts, and demanding something that has never happened.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


24 July, 2018  

New Scientist "gets" IQ

"New" is an old Leftist code-word for "Leftist" but is rarely used that way these days. But some names originating in the first half of C20 carry on into the present:  "New Statesman","New School", "New Theatre" etc.  And "New Scientist" magazine is part of that.  And it still does have a Leftist slant. They are apostles of global warming, for instance.  So it is a surprise that they seem now to have largely thrown off the Leftist phobia about IQ. Some excerpts below from their current issue which are entirely reasonable

Far from being an indefinable concept, a single measure of intelligence underpins our problem-solving, musicality and even creativity and emotional skills

When researchers talk about intelligence, they are referring to a specific set of skills that includes the abilities to reason, learn, plan and solve problems. The interesting thing is that people who are good at one of them tend to be good at all of them. These skills seem to reflect a broad mental capability, which has been dubbed general intelligence or g.

That’s not to say people don’t specialise in different areas. Some will be particularly good at solving mathematical problems, others will have particularly strong verbal or spatial abilities, and so on. When it comes to intelligence tests, although these specific skills account for about half of the variation between people’s performance, the other half is down to g. “If you took a sample of 1000 people and gave them all IQ tests, the people who do better on the vocabulary test will also do better, on average, on the reaction speed test, and so on,” says Stuart Ritchie, an intelligence researcher at the University of Edinburgh, UK.

This seems to fly in the face of old ideas. In the early 1980s, Harvard psychologist Howard Gardner argued for the existence of multiple intelligences, including “bodily-kinaesthetic”, “logical-mathematical” and “musical”. However, most researchers now believe these categories reflect different blends of abilities, skills and personality traits, not all of which are related to cognitive ability.



Trump not hurt by controversies about Russia, immigration

Trump’s overall job-approval rating in the poll stands at 45 percent among registered voters — up 1 point from June — while 52 percent of voters disapprove of his job.

That stability in Trump’s numbers stands out given the controversies and news over the past month — the separated families at the border, Trump’s contentious NATO meetings, his less contentious meeting with Russia’s Vladimir

Indeed, the new NBC/WSJ poll finds the president’s approval rating among Republican voters at 88 percent — the highest of his presidency — and 29 percent of all voters strongly approve of his job, which is another high for Trump in the poll.

“The more Trump gets criticized by the media, the more his base seems to rally behind him,” says Yang, the Democratic pollster.



We should IGNORE Leftist accusations

At most, dismiss their accusations in a few words as "Fake news" and leave it at that

It’s time we took a hard look at what we’ve been doing, that we might stop doing what’s not working and striven to better understand where we’ve made gains.

Our adversary, the political Left, does what it does always for strategic or tactical reasons. Continuous awareness of that core precept is vital if we’re to triumph over it.

The multitudinous, unending “accusations” Leftists have leveled at Trump Administration officials have had little to do with the facts, and far more with the prospect of gain for the Left. Their allies in the media march in lockstep with their tactics.

Allow me to repeat an old parable that has great relevance to media relations:

Some years ago, a theater impresario whom we shall call Smith, whose current production Hoity-Toity was, shall we say, not repaying its production costs received a phone call from Jones, a well-known reporter for the prestigious publication Theater Life. Their conversation ran as follows:

     "Mr. Smith," Jones said, "I'm calling to ask a few questions about Hoity-Toity."

     "Go right ahead," Smith said.

     "Well, first of all," Jones said, "the talk is that Hoity-Toity is falling deeply into arrears and will soon be closed. Is that the case?"

     Smith, a careful and experienced man, counted to ten before answering. "I would imagine that if I were to say no, your story in tomorrow's edition would be headlined 'Smith Denies Hoity-Toity Near To Closing.' Am I correct?"

     "Well, yes," Jones said. "Something like that, anyway."

     "Well, then," Smith said, "I'll answer your question if you'll answer one for me. How's that sound?"

     "Fair enough," Jones said warily. "What's your question?"

     "Mr. Jones, is it true that your wife has syphilis?"

     "What?" Jones shrieked. "Why are you asking me that? What put such an idea into your head?"

     "Oh, you know how the rumor mill churns," Smith said breezily. "But, as it happens, you're on speakerphone and Davis is here from Variety. If you were to answer no, he might have a story in tomorrow's edition headlined 'Jones Denies Wife Has Syphilis.' What would you think of a story like that?"

     There was a long silence on the line. Finally, Jones said, "All right, Smith. I take your point."

What would be the effect of a story headlined “Smith Denies Hoity-Toity Near To Closing” – ? It would be to reinforce in the reader’s mind two key elements: “Hoity-Toity” and “closing.” It would suggest that the show is a failure. It would discourage potential patrons of the show. There’s a strong presumption in the human mind that “my fellow humans, when they move or act en masse, are usually right.” We might deplore it. We might call it “the behavior of lemmings,” but it’s there...and you respond to it too.

That suggests that it’s a mistake to reply to, or to attempt to refute, those “accusations.” Every time we do so, we reinforce the key elements of the accusation and thus compound the losses it inflicts on us. Worse, we give the Left a particle of respectability it doesn’t deserve and should not get. Note that this does not imply answering with Left-like vitriol, but rather ignoring them, including their media handmaidens.

There are no gains to be had by responding. Not even minor ones.

Just now, for example, the Trump Administration is racking up the successes in economics and international relations. Those who are paying attention are aware of this – Right and Left. The Left’s denigrations, accusations, and insults are intended to distract the public from Trump’s successes. To the extent that it’s making any gains in that fashion, the credit must go to those who’ve managed to obstruct the real news – that is, reportage about what’s really happening. For among Americans aware of the gains the Administration is accumulating, Trump’s popularity and overall approval are advancing. Therefore it behooves the Left that those gains either go unreported, or are displaced from public attention by its attacks.

The only countermeasure is to keep our focus on what the Administration has achieved, and to talk it up without pausing to respond to the Left’s stream of distractive emissions.



What The Heck Is Hillary Wearing? “She looks like she’s in a hospital.”

Hospital shoes too?

Two Times Presidential Hopeful Loser Hilary Clinton took to the stage to bash President Trump and she looked like hell.  With disheveled hair and wearing what looked like a hospital gown, Clinton got more attention for how she looked that from what she said.

Hillary Clinton spoke at Ozyfest, a two-day festival in Central Park, on Saturday where she complained about Russia and Vladimir Putin for almost 45 minutes straight during a Q&A session with Laurene Powell Jobs, founder of Emerson Collection.

During her diatribe, Clinton claimed that the Russians are still trying to hack into our computer systems  and may actually hack into the voting machines and servers that count the votes during the 2018 midterm election.



Trump Names 'The Real Enemy of the People'

Pushing back against the liberal media on Thursday, President Donald Trump declared them to be "the real enemy of the people."

"The Summit with Russia was a great success, except with the real enemy of the people, the Fake News Media," Trump tweeted at 9:30 a.m. "I look forward to our second meeting [with Putin] so that we can start implementing some of the many things discussed, including stopping terrorism, security for Israel, nuclear proliferation, cyber attacks, trade, Ukraine, Middle East peace, North Korea and more. There are many answers, some easy and some hard, to these problems...but they can ALL be solved!" the president wrote.

Earlier on Thursday, Trump tweeted that the "fake news media wants so badly to see a major confrontation with Russia, even a confrontation that could lead to war. They are pushing so recklessly hard and hate the fact that I’ll probably have a good relationship with Putin. We are doing MUCH better than any other country!"

And: "The Fake News Media is going Crazy! They make up stories without any backup, sources or proof. Many of the stories written about me, and the good people surrounding me, are total fiction. Problem is, when you complain you just give them more publicity. But I’ll complain anyway!"

Trump's comments on Monday at a joint news conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin produced scathing reviews from current and former government officials; scorn from liberal cable networks; and even admonishment from a few conservative outlets.

One of the main criticisms was President Trump's tough talk to allies and his apparent deference to an adversary.

In an interview with CBS's Jeff Glor following the NATO summit, Trump was asked to name his biggest global foes:

"I think we have a lot of foes," Trump said. "I think the European Union is a foe, what they do to us in trade. Now, you wouldn't think of the European Union, but they're a foe." He also named China and Russia.

On Thursday, Trump tweeted a "told-you-so." "I told you so! The European Union just slapped a Five Billion Dollar fine on one of our great companies, Google. They truly have taken advantage of the U.S., but not for long!"

In another tweet, the president also thanked "Fox & Friends" for playing video clips of the "many times" Trump has recognized Russian meddling.



Why Trump doesn’t hate Russia

The president’s refusal to embrace Russophobia is no bad thing

US president Donald Trump is in Helsinki for a one-on-one (plus translators), no-advisers-allowed meeting with Russian premier Vladimir Putin. And seemingly everyone is convinced that Russia is undermining liberal democracy, indulging in nefarious interventions around the world, and even dead-set on reviving some larger Russia, for which the annexation of Crimea was only the start. Everyone, that is, except Trump.

So, on the eve of this most black-boxed of presidential tête-à-têtes, his own Justice Department issued an indictment of 12 Russian intelligence agents for hacking the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign. Senators and 18 Democratic members of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs have called on Trump to abort the meeting. And, perhaps most remarkable of all, Trump’s own team constantly expressed a fear of Russian aggression.

Just this past week, Trump’s director of national intelligence, Dan Coats, compared the danger of Russian cyberattacks to the terrorist threat posed to the US in the run-up to 9/11. In his trepidation, Coats was merely following Trump’s former national security adviser, General HR McMaster, who warned last year: ‘Russia and China are determined to make economies less free and less fair, to grow their militaries, and to control information and data to repress their societies and expand their influence.’ Likewise, defence secretary Jim Mattis, secretary of state Mike Pompeo and current national security adviser John Bolton have all been sounding the alarm about Russia’s intentions, and urging Trump to go in hard on Russia’s electoral meddling.

Yet Trump seemingly refuses to toe his team’s line, let alone that of Congress or the Justice Department. Instead, he seems content to accept the Kremlin’s contention that ‘the meddling never happened’, or, as he put it in November, ‘Every time [Putin] sees me, he says, “I didn’t do that”, and I really believe that when he tells me that, he means it’. More striking still, some worry that Trump may even recognise Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2015 as legitimate, despite the US, the EU and NATO all condemning it as a violation of international law and subsequently imposing sanctions. Trump, however, has said that Crimea ought to be part of Russia, given that the majority of Crimeans speak Russian. ‘That is not the position of the United States’, countered Bolton.

And that’s the problem. Regarding Russia, Trump’s administration, which is meant to be articulating the ‘position of the United States’, seems torn in two, with Trump on one side, and everybody else on the other. It is as if there are in fact two positions of the United States on Russia. Trump says simply ‘if we can get along with Russia, that’s a good thing’. Everybody else says you can’t trust Russia, because they’re the bad guys, usually with a reference to Putin’s past as a KGB agent. Trump will be having a spectacularly private chat with Putin. Everybody else will be working on possibly public agreements and disagreements with Moscow. As the New York Times puts it, ‘Trump is wholly untethered from his administration when it comes to dealing with Moscow’.

But too many seem to misunderstand the reasons for this untethering. They seem to think that it has something to do with Trump the person. So they psychoanalyse him, speculating on his attraction to Putin’s machismo, his desire to see reflected in the Russian president some of the qualities – strength, cunning, and sheer butchness – that he himself would like to have. Others go deeper into more conspiratorial territory, either outright turning Trump into some lurid parody of the Manchurian Candidate, or alluding to the Kremlin’s possession of a recording of some tawdry hookers-and-hotel escapade which it might or might not be using to blackmail him.

Yet perhaps it is not Trump who has the Russia problem. Perhaps it is not Trump who has the Putin fixation. In fact, it is the American political class, indeed the political and media classes of much of the West, which has developed – or rather revived – an obsession with Russia as The Enemy. Have they not turned it into an object of evil, determined to undermine and corrode the institutions of the West? Hence Russia is blamed for the bloodshed in Syria, despite the West’s considerably larger role in the unravelling of the entire Middle East. It is condemned for the conflict in Ukraine, despite NATO and the EU’s longstanding provocations. And, above all, it is held responsible, in some distant behind-the-scenes way, for the election of Trump, Brexit and every other Western popular revolt of recent years. That is why Russian meddling in the US presidential election has become such a crusade for the US political establishment. It explains away the very real estrangement of the political class from those they have for too long failed to represent. It explains away their failure to speak for the whole of society, rather than just a professional, middle-class coastal stratum. It explains away the domestic reasons for the erosion of the political establishment’s grip on power.

Trump is no political visionary. But neither is he part of the political establishment. After all, he was the beneficiary of people’s turn against the establishment. And, as such, he is not overdetermined to see Russia as the enemy, the baleful power upturning the world. He stands apart from almost everybody else in Washington DC and in Western foreign-policymaking circles in approaching Russia and Putin as a state entity that it might be possible to deal with.

And that is too much for too many to bear. Domestically it is too much for those politicians, and their cheerleaders, who have found in the spectre of Russian electoral meddling a readymade excuse for their own political fall. And internationally, it is too much to bear for those Western political elites, seeking refuge in NATO and the EU, which have found, in facing down the spectre of Russian military malignity, a raison d’être. The split in Trump’s administration reflects the deeper split between those who have a need to conjure Russia up as an existential threat, and those who, in Trump’s case, clearly do not.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


23 July, 2018  

Trump Haters Take To Twitter In Vile, Sexist Attacks On Kimberley Guilfoyle Following Rumors Of Her Exit From Fox News

The rumors have barely been out about Kimberly Guilfoyle leaving Fox News and already the disgusting attacks have begun on social media.

Rumors surfaced this week that Guilfoyle will be leaving to join the pro-Trump super PAC, America First.

But the hatred and nastiness on social media against Guilfoyle, who is currently dating Donald Trump Jr., was immediate.

Amazingly, the same left that is aghast at President Trump supposedly lacking all civility painted a very telling self-portrait.

The unconfirmed report unleashed stunning responses on Twitter that were nothing short of shameful, vulgar and sexist.


The insults were too unpleasant for me to reproduce here -- JR


‘Trump is a Russian plant’: birtherism for liberals

The idea that Trump is in Putin’s pocket is a feverish conspiracy theory

The cultural and political set has lost its mind. That’s the most striking thing to come out of Donald Trump’s press conference with Vladimir Putin in Helsinki yesterday. Not Trump’s refusal to believe the US intelligence agencies that Russia tried to interfere with the 2016 election, by hacking into the emails of the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton presidential campaign. This we already knew. Trump said as much after he met Putin on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific summit in November. No, what was far more surprising, and worrying, was the readiness of not just Cold Warrior Republicans but also supposedly level-headed liberals to say that Trump’s performance proves he is ‘treasonous’, a ‘traitor’, a Russian plant, an unabashed colluder with Vlad in the downfall of American democracy. It was nothing short of hysterical.

There’s no doubting that Helsinki was remarkable, and further proof of Trump’s vanity. At the afternoon press conference, following two hours of private talks between the two leaders, Trump effectively sided with Putin over his own intelligence agencies and Justice Department, which had indicted 12 Russian intelligence officers for hacking into Democrats’ emails just days before the summit. Putin also admitted that he had wanted Trump to win the election, because of his pledge to reset relations with Russia. It is hard to think of a recent precedent. But did Trump’s performance constitute ‘treason’, as former former CIA director John Brennan and the entirety of DC Twitter allege? Did it suggest that Trump is an ‘asset of Russian intelligence’, as one New York Times columnist pondered? Of course not. And it’s dangerous to suggest otherwise.

The gap between what happened at that press conference and the histrionics on Twitter yesterday was remarkable. You’d be forgiven for thinking Trump dropped his FSB fob on the rug on his way out. When asked about Russian meddling, Trump said ‘I have great confidence in my intelligence people, but I will tell you that President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today’, repeating what he has been saying for months. Yesterday, as ever, the reason for Trump’s denials are obvious: not that he is in Putin’s pocket, or that he’s being blackmailed by the Kremlin, as some still allege, but that he thinks even conceding that Russian elements might have tried to meddle in 2016, however unsuccessfully, would call his victory into question. It stems from his insecurity, his narcissism, but also the commitment of many Democrats to use any whiff of Russian interference to do just that.

The hottakes on Twitter told a very different story. Esquire’s Ryan Lizza tweeted, ‘The president of the United States openly colluded with Putin to undermine our democracy’. ‘I’m calling this treason. Point. Blank. Period. TREASON’, wrote the NYT’s Charles Blow. The caps say it all. These spittle-flecked claims are the product of conspiratorial thinking. Not even the intelligence agencies (who are suddenly entirely trustworthy in liberals’ eyes) are claiming that there is proof that Trump colluded with Russia. But yesterday even the much-derided theory that the Kremlin is blackmailing Trump with a tape of him cavorting with urinating prostitutes in a Moscow hotel room in 2013 made a comeback. In response to a question about whether he had such ‘kompromat’ on The Donald, Putin said that he didn’t even know Trump was in Moscow in 2013. ‘A non sequitur’, declared the Guardian’s Luke Harding. ‘Conclusion: there is a tape.’

This is madness – dot-connecting and wild claims of McCarthyite intensity. And it is incredibly revealing. For all the coastal-elite talk of Trump ushering in an age of fake news, post-truth and mudslinging, in which faith in democratic institutions is being undermined and once important principles are being compromised by partisan prejudice and weaponised bullshit, this is precisely what some liberals are doing with the Russia issue. They are peddling hyperbole and dodgy theories to try to undermine a democratically elected president. And in doing so, many Trump-hysterics on the liberal-left are becoming the very thing they once claimed to hate. Where once they derided Republicans for clutching to Cold War thinking, where once they decried wingnut conservative conspiracy theories about Obama being a Muslim Brotherhood plant who wasn’t born in the US, now they’re insisting Trump is a Moscow-controlled Manchurian candidate, without a shred of evidence. Whatever else we learned yesterday, one thing is now clear: the ‘Trump is a traitor’ claim is birtherism for liberals.



Why liberals bash Trump but ignore dictators

Racist protesters expect only white rulers to be civilised

Although the first episode of Sacha Baron Cohen’s latest outing, Who Is America?, was enjoyable, especially the absurd liberal Dr Nira Cain-N’Degeocello, the programme is based on that most feeble and lazy of premises: that Americans are crass and stupid. Ha ha! Let’s all laugh at a country that has seven entries in the world’s top ten university rankings.

Anti-Americanism was in full voice at the weekend with the visit to Britain of President Donald Trump, as thousands took to the streets around the country to protest against – so the consensus goes – this unbelievably evil, crass and thick man. The slogans on the placards vomited with rage – ‘World’s #1 Racist’, ‘Trump is a fascist’, ‘Stupid, callous, fragile, racist, narcissistic POTUS’ – while one protester in London, an Anglican vicar, summed up both the mood of the protesters and the anti-Trump narrative. ‘The way that he’s spoken about Islamic people, the way he’s spoken about Mexicans crossing the border, his attitudes towards women and gay people – it’s all so totally offensive. He’s broadcasting poisonous attitudes towards the community, so I think we all have felt we needed to organise to keep idealism alive and to make sure that message of hate isn’t embraced by people’, he said.

You might argue that the protests were directed at the man, not the American people. But it is more than a coincidence that Trump conforms to a negative American stereotype beloved of the infantile left and BBC radio and television comedians: the crass, philistine, insular, vulgar, money-obsessed oaf. The idiotic cacophony we heard at the weekend had all the hallmarks of cheap, uninformed students’-union anti-Americanism, a moronic inferno against a man with similar politics to his predecessor, but with terrible manners.

More to the point, it is always America that Britain and other European countries get outraged by. There were no comparable protests by British people when the Chinese president, Xi Jinping, came to visit in 2015, despite the fact that China executes an estimated 3,000 people a year, more than the rest of the world combined. By comparison, last year America executed 23 people.

Where were the protests when the Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, came to visit in Britain this May? According to an Amnesty International report on 2017/2018, in Turkey: ‘Dissent was ruthlessly suppressed, with journalists, political activists and human-rights defenders among those targeted. Instances of torture continued to be reported… Any effective investigation of human-rights violations by state officials was prevented by pervasive impunity. Abuses by armed groups continued.’ In Turkey these days, even political protests are banned.

While we are familiar with the anti-Trump narrative, where are the jokes and the invective directed at the leaders of Saudi Arabia or Venezuela, countries with appalling human-rights records? Where are the displays of solidarity for the oppressed women of Iran, struggling against their regime for the right not to wear a veil in public?

More glaringly, considering that so many anti-Trump protesters take umbrage against him as women and feminists, sporting pink vagina hats (so racist!) on protests, their silence on a matter closer to home, namely the rape gangs unmasked in Rochdale, Rotherham, Telford, Newcastle and elsewhere, has been deafening. Molesting a woman is an awful thing to do, but the sexual abuse of thousands of teenage girls – 1,400 in Rotherham alone – is an unspeakable crime. Yet no one has spoken out in anger about this in the name of feminism.

From this we can only conclude that self-styled feminists, and anti-Americans in general, only expect and demand civilised behaviour from white people or mostly white, Western countries (again, so racist!). They fear being labelled Islamophobic, ‘right-wing’ or racist if they speak out against the Chinese or Muslimmgangs. It wouldn’t look cool. They would lose face among their liberal friends and peers, or even – most catastrophically – lose some Twitter followers. Far safer to castigate and condemn a white, male American.

It is always the same story. It is always the nominally compassionate and altruistic left who are the most egotistic and self-centred, and obsessed with their precious public image.



With NATO and Putin, Trump’s cleaning up after Obama

Henry Ergas

In a widely acclaimed column in last weekend’s The New York Times, Bret Stephens argued that Donald Trump’s foreign policy aimed at one result and one result only: “The collapse of the liberal international order”, even at the cost of leaving America hated, feared and alone.

That outcome would “be gratifying to Trump’s sense of his historical importance”, and it would also suit Russian President Vladimir Putin, “who knows that an America that stands for its own interests first also stands, and falls, alone”. But it would be a “historical disaster”, demeaning “the democratic ideals that America once embodied”, and reducing the US to a mere bully.

Stephens’s is no voice in the wilderness. On the contrary, during the course of the past week the invective hurled at Trump became a torrent of abuse, in a crescendo that reached a peak after his press conference with Putin.

Yet there is one thing none of his critics has been able to say: that the US President’s view of the situation America and its friends and allies confront is fundamentally incorrect.

Nor could they. For it is an undeniable reality that by the time Trump came to office, the “liberal international order” was not even a shadow of its former self — it was a ghost whose death was barely disguised by the din of its rattling chains.

No purpose would be served by recounting its downfall. Suffice it to note that the final blow was ­delivered by Trump’s predecessor, who will be remembered as one of the few US presidents whose foreign policy left every region of the world in worse shape than it was when he came to office. Exuding an air of Olympian ­superiority, Barack Obama allowed much of the Middle East to be ­reduced to rubble, while framing a nuclear treaty with Iran whose flaws are recognised by even its staunchest supporters.

Paralysed by his failure to follow through on the “red line” he set for Bashar al-Assad, he created a vacuum that invited Russia’s resurgence as a ­regional military power, while standing impotently by as the ­Syrian tragedy unfolded.

Nor did Obama rise above indecision in dealing with China. And on international trade he was scarcely better. Placing greater priority on climate change, he steadfastly refused to spend political capital on rebuilding support in his own party for an open trading system or on preventing the Doha Round from becoming the first multilateral trade ­negoti­ations to crumble, as they did in 2016.

But no one could dispute Obama’s skills when sanctimonious rhetoric was required. While struggling to communicate with the Democrats’ traditional blue-collar constituency, he had a natural rapport with Europe’s political elite, who have elevated euphemism, question-begging and sheer cloudy vagueness to an art form.

Little wonder then that during his presidency the US and the EU formed such a powerful choir lauding the “liberal international order” they were doing so much to discredit.

That Trump is cut from a different cloth is obvious. Temperamentally, his attraction is to the strongmen — be it Russia’s Putin, Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban, or Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu — who, in nurturing a direct relationship with their base, make bluntness a crucial feature of their persona.

Their objectionable features are apparent, as is their hostility to democracy; but if they are such successful politicians it is at least partly because their message has the ring of truth. So too with Trump. Who, for example, could dispute Trump’s claim that the Europeans “free ride” on America’s defence spending? After all, since Lyndon Baines Johnson in 1966, every US president has deplored Europe’s refusal to shoulder its share of the military burden.

The difference is that Trump has convinced the Europeans that his threats are credible, with the result that the latest opinion polls show rising public support for greater defence spending, even in Germany.

Equally with China. When the Clinton administration approved China’s accession to the World Trade Organisation, it claimed China would speedily and permanently liberalise its trade and investment regime. Instead, under President Xi Jinping, China has veered into mercantilism, repeatedly breaching the rules it committed to in 2001.

As those breaches occurred, Obama filed the right complaints, as did the EU; but it is only now, in the face of Trump’s punitive tariffs, that China’s ruling caste has shown even the slightest willingness to consider changing course.

And so finally with Russia. As of December, Putin will be the second longest lasting ruler of Russia since the fall of the tsars, and he seems likely to remain in power for years to come; to believe global ­issues can be resolved without ­engaging with him is an infantile delusion.

Yes, Putin meddled in the US presidential election, just as the US was, and remains, heavily involved in the domestic politics of Russia’s immediate neighbours.

And yes, the Democrats’ incessant focus on those ham-fisted efforts riles Trump, who believes — quite understandably — that their main goal is to undermine his legitimacy. Smouldering with rage, he readily allows himself to be provoked into foolish denials.

That Trump’s denials, the howls of protest they unleash and his subsequent backdowns are cringe-worthy hardly needs to be said. But it is equally certain that they are a sideshow. Ultimately, what matters is whether a working relationship is restored between the two countries, as Trump has sought to do.

Trump’s instincts on those basic issues have therefore been vastly superior to those of his critics, who focus on his every slip with the spot-beam of pure hatred. To say that is not to excuse his many errors of judgment, including his misconceptions about international trade. Nor is it to minimise the myriad dangers his approach involves.

But Machiavelli was right that politics holds no safe options — only ones that are more and less unsafe. And Machiavelli was also right that the prince, if he is to protect liberty from its foes, may have to choose being feared over being loved, as love is fickle while fear endures.

That fear, however, should not be the terror of unpredictability and arbitrariness. Rather, as Machiavelli stressed, its handling demands leavening the ferocity of the lion with the cunning and ­intellect of the fox.

So far, Trump has shown that he knows how to be a lion. Now, as the consequences begin to be felt, he must show more of the artfulness of the fox.

The world he inherited offers him few pathways to success and many roads to failure; whether he can find the wisdom to navigate the risks that creates will determine his legacy, and our future.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


22 July, 2018  

Hillary sued at last

The Coolidge Reagan Foundation, a non-profit organization, has filed a 22-page federal election complaint today with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) against Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, the Democratic National Committee, and their law firm Perkins Coie. Another target of their legal complaint is against Christopher Steele, the ex-British spy that authored the infamous, false dossier on President Trump.

The foundation is focused on Hillary Clinton and Democrat insiders’ illegal use of money transfers and payments to and from Fusion GPS, which is the firm hired by Steele to compile the dossier. The brazen money transfers are in violation of campaign finance laws, shifting tens of millions of dollars in different accounts via donors and different party entities.

While Democrats and the liberal media continue to attack President Trump for alleged collusion, the non-profit is certain that it was actually the Democrats colluding with foreigners.

As Breitbart News first reported, the Coolidge Reagan Foundation said in the complaint: “For over a year, Democratic officials have accused the Trump Administration of collaborating with foreign interlopers to influence the outcome of the 2016 Presidential election. In reality, it was the Clinton-backed Democratic machine that conspired with foreigners in violation of both federal campaign finance law and basic decency to manipulate the election.”

The foundation added, “The Clinton campaign weaponized American intelligence and law enforcement communities — led by Democratic appointees of President Barack Obama —through false, malicious, wholly manufactured lies about the Republican nominee, now President, Donald J. Trump.”

The complaint notes that while the Clinton campaign reported all legal expenses to Perkins Coie from January 2016 through December 2017, Fusion GPS was never mentioned.

Where was the itemized expense for opposition research against President Donald Trump? That’s what the foundation would like to know, which, includes questions about: “False Specification of Expenditure Purpose; False Identification of Expenditure Recipient; False Identification of Expenditures’ Purpose and Recipient; Solicitation of Donations (or Contributions) from Foreign Nationals; Substantially Assisting Solicitation of Donations from Foreign Nationals; Donation or Expenditure by a Foreign National; and Foreign National Participation in Political Committees’ Decisionmaking Processes Concerning Expenditures.”

If this type of money laundering scheme happened on a Republican presidential campaign, the mainstream media would be asking the questions. But since this involves DNC and Hillary Clinton, it will take litigation and hopeful cooperation with the Justice Department to get to the truth.

The College Reagan Foundation is a charitable non-profit organization, with a mission to “defend, protect, and advance liberty, and particularly the principles of free speech enshrined in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.”



Poll: Republicans Overwhelmingly Support Trump’s Putin Press Conference

An overwhelming majority of self-identified Republicans support the way President Trump handled his press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin earlier this week, according to an Axios poll that was released Thursday morning.

Of the Republicans who voted, 79 percent said they are supportive of Trump’s handling of the conference. Conversely, only 18 percent of Republicans said they did not approve of it. That leaves only 3 percent of Republicans undecided on the president’s performance at the conference.

While this poll shows many Republicans being supportive of the president, there were many conservative lawmakers that did not enjoy the way Trump handled himself.

“Today’s press conference in Helsinki was one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in recent memory,” Sen.John McCain said in a statement Monday. (McCain: Trump Putin Presser Was ‘One Of The Most Disgraceful Performances By An American President In History’)

The online poll was conducted by SurveyMonkey on July 16-17. They surveyed 2,100 adults living in the United States. The margin of error for the survey is plus or minus 3 percentage points.



Trump Signs Executive Order Establishing Apprenticeship Programs with U.S. Companies for 3.8 Million Workers

This will be one of the best things Trump has done

President Donald Trump signed an executive order Thursday establishing a workforce initiative to establish apprenticeships with U.S. companies and on-the-job training for American workers.

“I will be signing an executive order to establish the National Council for the American Worker. That's a first. This Council will be made up of top officials across the government. We're also establishing an outside advisory board of industry leaders and experts, which we will announce in the coming weeks, very shortly. A lot of people want to be on that board very badly. I have some great people going on that board,” he said.

“Together, their task will be to develop a national workforce and strategy to equip Americans of all ages and at all stages of their career with the skills they need to thrive in the modern economy. Whether it’s a high school student looking to land their first job -- first job ever,” the president said.

“They've got a lot of enthusiasm, and they lose that enthusiasm when they don't land that job, but now they're all landing jobs. Or a late-career worker who wants to learn a new trade, we want every American to have the chance to earn a great living doing a great job that they love, where they wake up in the morning and they can't get to work fast enough. A lot of these people know that feeling. That's why they're in the position they're in,” he said.

“In that spirit, I'm proud to announce an exciting new challenge and the beginning of a new national movement. We're asking businesses and organizations across the country to sign our new pledge to America’s workers,” Trump said.

“Today, 23 companies and associations are pledging to expand apprenticeships. That's an interesting word for me to be saying, right? ‘The Apprentice.’ I never actually put that together until just now. That was a good experience, I will tell you that. Isn't that strange? Ivanka, I never associated -- but here we are. Can't get away from that word. That's a great word for on the job training and vocational education,” he said.

On hand were executives from the following companies: Aerospace Industries Association, American Hotel and Lodging Association, American Trucking Associations, Associated Builders and Contractors, Associated General Contractors of America, FedEx, Foxconn, General Motors, Home Depot, IBM, Internet Association, Lockheed Martin, Microsoft, National Association of Homebuilders, National Restaurant Association, National Retail Federation, North America's Building Trades Unions, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, Society for Human Resource Management, Signatory Wall and Ceiling Contractors Alliance, UPS, and Wal-Mart.

Altogether, they committed to training more than 3.8 million students and workers for new careers, the president said.

“This is only day one, and we far exceeded our initial goal of 500,000 students and workers. We thought it was going to be 500,000, and it's close to 4 million. And by the time the day ends, it will probably be well over 4 million,” Trump said. “In the days and months ahead, we hope that hundreds of companies and organizations will join us in this effort.”

The president touted the economic success of his administration thus far, including the creation of 3.7 million jobs since the 2016 election.

“In the month of June alone, we grew the workforce by more than 600,000 workers,” he said.

“We're in the longest positive job growth streak in American history. African American unemployment has reached its lowest level in American history. Hispanic unemployment is at its lowest level in American history. Asian unemployment has reached its lowest level in American history,” Trump said.

Even women’s unemployment is at its lowest level in 65 years, he said. “But within about two weeks, I think we'll be able to say ‘in American history,’ because it's moving quickly.”

Trump said his administration has already lifted “forgotten Americans” like ex-cons, “off the sidelines, out of the margins, and back into the workforce.”

“We are giving a second chance at life to the 620,000 former inmates who reenter society each year. There's nothing like a great, great jobs market to take care of that situation. It's incredible what's happened with people that were in prison that, previous to this, could not get themselves a job, and now they're being hired, and people are loving them. It's been really incredible to see,” he said.



Who's Really 'For the People'?

Democrats trot out their latest campaign slogan. Let's count the ways it's false advertising

House Democrats this week revealed their latest campaign slogan for the midterms. And it is (drum roll…) “For the People.” With the overly generic motto, Democrat leaders stated, “We basically put it all on paper to say here are our top issues — they’re simple, they’re easy to understand.” That raises two questions: First, just what are the Dems’ top issues that demonstrate they are “for the people”? Second, and more salient given Democrat identity politics, which people are they for? Let’s look at a few key issues:

Illegal immigration: Democrats advocate open borders and sanctuary cities. Clearly, they stand with illegal aliens over and against American citizens by rejecting the enforcement of America’s borders and our nation’s laws.

Tax cuts and the economy: House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi infamously described Republican tax reform as both “Armageddon” and “crumbs.” Yet the GOP significantly cut taxes for the vast majority of Americans, and it’s proving to jump-start an eight-year-long stagnant economy. Yet Pelosi promises to roll back the tax legislation, which not a single Democrat voted for, once again reinforcing the fact that Democrats simply don’t trust Americans to spend their own money as they best see fit. Evidently, Democrats see record-low unemployment levels, especially within minority communities, as a problem “for the people” rather than a benefit. That’s why Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Elizabeth Warren are running around telling lies about the unemployment rate to talk down a good economy. Democrats can’t win if the economy is good.

Abortion: Democrats advocate for the “right” to end lives before birth, under the dubious notion of supporting women. They’re hyperventilating over the possibility of Donald Trump’s Supreme Court pick overturning Roe v. Wade. Meanwhile, a millionaire Democrat candidate for Congress in Pennsylvania has spent millions supporting groups that advocate population control; groups that have called for taxing parents who have more than two children “to the hilt” and see abortion as “a highly effective weapon” to combat overpopulation. That rhetoric sounds like the policies of communist China. For the people, indeed. More like for the people’s republic.

Speaking of the people’s republic, Democrats are fast embracing the anti-capitalist ethic of Karl Marx. Look no further than the Democrats’ latest star, Ocasio-Cortez, an avowed socialist who seeks to sell her ideology by advocating free college and free health care, while blaming capitalism for our problems. She recently opined, “Capitalism has not always existed in the world and it will not always exist in the world.”

When it comes down to it, Democrats love to talk about how much they are for the people, but their policies are clearly opposed to the American ideals of individual freedom, limited government, and Rule of Law. When stacked up against the policies and accomplishments of President Donald Trump and Republicans, it becomes quite clear which party is truly for the American people and which party isn’t.



Here’s an Indisputable Fact: Immigrants Bring Cultural Change

Dennis Prager

The most frequently used description of America by those who advocate for large numbers of immigrants—those here legally or illegally—is “America is a nation of immigrants.”

The statement sounds meaningful. But in reality, it’s meaningless.

What else could America be? If no one had come to America from elsewhere, the North American continent would have remained populated only by its indigenous people—which is what many on the left wish had happened. As the late Howard Zinn, author of “A People’s History of the United States,” the most widely used American history text in high schools and universities, said to me, the world was not better off thanks to the founding of America.

So, the statement “America is a nation of immigrants” tells us nothing about the only questions that matter: Should there be any limits to immigration? And what should we do about illegal immigration?

Regarding the first question, an increasing number of Americans on the left do not believe in any limits: We should allow all those escaping poverty or violence into the United States. As Hillary Clinton was caught on tape saying, she doesn’t believe in borders. She speaks for the American left: In the past few weeks, leftists have marched in American streets demanding the abolition of ICE, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.

Therefore, for the left, the second question, “What should we do about immigration?” is essentially irrelevant. Their answer is “Nothing. All migrants are welcome.”

However, for those of us—liberals, conservatives, and independents—who do believe in borders, the second question is critical. And the reason has nothing—absolutely nothing—to do with race or ethnicity.

The reason we worry so much about vast numbers of immigrants is that too many immigrants in too short a period of time will change American culture and values. Our concern is not rooted in xenophobia; it is rooted in values-phobia.

Why is this an issue now? Because the vast majority of past immigrants changed their values, not America’s, when they came to this country. They came here to become American, not only in terms of language, citizenship, and national identity, but also in terms of values.

But while some immigrants still do, the majority does not. They want to become American citizens in order to better their lives—a completely understandable motivation—not to embrace American values and identity. The majority of today’s immigrants from Latin America, for example, wish to become wealthier Latin Americans.

Tens of millions of people have been coming to America with non-American values—essentially, values of the left such as big government and a welfare state. And thanks to the Democratic Party and the left, they don’t jettison these non-American values at the border and are encouraged to hold on to them.

Again, the concern many have over the issue of immigration has absolutely nothing to do with race or ethnicity. Pope Francis is a good example. He looks like a white European, but he has brought the left-wing Latin American values of his native Argentina into the papacy.

One more proof that opposition to vast numbers of immigrants has nothing to with xenophobia, racism, or nativism and everything to do with values is the effect of American immigrants going from northern states to southern states. The large number of (white) American internal “immigrants” from northeastern states has changed Florida’s values. Once a rock-solid conservative state, Florida has become more and more liberal and leftist because of the influx of people from New York and the Northeast.

Is noting the values effect of New Yorkers immigrating to Florida—or Californians to Arizona and Oregon—xenophobic, racist, or nativist? Of course not.

That’s why opposition to large-scale Muslim immigration into Europe (or America) also has little or nothing to do with xenophobia, racism (Muslim is not a race anyway), or nativism. It has to do with changing European values. Large-scale Muslim immigration to Europe will do to Europe’s values what large-scale northern-state immigration has done to Florida and what large-scale European immigration did to the native culture of North America.

So, while the issue appears to be whether one is for or against large-scale immigration into America, the real issue is whether one wants to preserve American values or see them changed.

The left wants them changed. Conservatives don’t.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


20 July, 2018  

5 Billion in Border Funding Proposed for 2019 Budget

The cost estimates to build President Donald Trump’s “big beautiful” wall range from $15-25 billion, and a new fiscal 2019 spending measure was just introduced to fund $5 billion of that.

That $5 billion provides additional funding for the southern border wall and other border security measures. Part of the $5 billion would be allocated with the specific goal of achieving “100 percent scanning” of the border within five years. That would be achieved by adding 375 new border patrol agents, and 140 canine teams.

The Department of Homeland Security estimates that 200 miles of border wall could be built with this funding. The U.S. Mexico border is 2,000 miles in length, of which 1300 miles are exposed. The 700 miles of protected border that does exist stems from the Secure Fence Act of 2006, which was passed with votes from Senators Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Diane Feinstein, and Chuck Schumer, back before the Left made being against illegal immigration a “Nazi” position.

Still, this $5 billion only would construct enough border to cover approximately 15% of the exposed border. Aside from this proposed measure, the 2019 budget included $3 billion in funding for a border, which has been referred to as a mere “down payment” on the border.

The Administration said it expects only 60 miles of fencing to be built with the $3 billion, which is more conservative than the DHS’s estimates of how much wall can be built per dollar of funding.

This proposed $5 billion in new border spending will be met with fierce opposition by Congressional Democrats, but that’ll prove irrelevant given the Republican majority in Congress. And if Democrat opposition can’t stop border funding, what’s the point at stopping at $5 billion? Why not just fund the entire thing, like Republicans have been arguing we should do for decades?

The cost of illegal immigration to the American economy tops $100 billion a year, so as expensive as building a border is, the return on investment is tremendous.

While Democrats are running around calling for the dismantling of ICE, President Trump is committed to securing our border and keeping the American public safe.



Lying Is a Time-Honored Leftist Tradition

The left wing’s nonstop lying for dramatic effect didn’t just begin when Donald Trump announced his candidacy for the presidency — they’ve been telling whoppers for decades without even the slightest hint of shame or remorse, let alone an “I’m sorry.”

The left’s histrionics over any alleged Trump/Russia collusion or about Trump’s historical meeting with Putin is nothing more than a farcical sideshow. Our nation’s liberals couldn’t care less about the potential threat that Russia poses to the United States.

If those on the left were truly concerned about Moscow, they never would have turned a blind eye to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s handling of the Uranium One deal in 2010 that could have potentially handed over up to 20 percent of our nation’s uranium supply to Russian-controlled companies.

Don’t be fooled by the overwrought displays of liberal outrage.

The left’s foremost concern has absolutely nothing to do with Trump, Russia or even our national security. The left only cares about one thing — control. And just like Malcolm X, they are prepared to gain it “by any means necessary,” no matter who gets hurt in the process.

A short walk down memory lane will highlight these inconvenient truths about the left.

Slandering of Ayn Rand

The left has been calling the late Ayn Rand a fascist for over 75 years now, despite her penning such irrefutably anti-fascist literature as “Atlas Shrugged” and “The Fountainhead.” Liberals desperately don’t want Rand’s works to be read because those books are in direct opposition to fascism, socialism and communism — all of which give the government tremendous power over the individual, which is precisely what the left is hoping to achieve.

Rand’s philosophy, called objectivism, champions individual liberties. She strongly advocated for the complete separation of the government from the markets and didn’t believe the government (or any individual) had the right to claim one precious second of anyone’s life. Calling Rand a fascist isn’t just a lie; it’s tantamount to slander.

Destroying Barry Goldwater’s 1964 Presidential Bid

In 1964, Arizona Sen. Barry Goldwater, a Republican, was running for the presidency against incumbent Democrat Lyndon Baines Johnson. Approximately two months before Election Day, the Democrat machine rolled out the most incendiary television ad in presidential election history.

The commercial was known as the “Daisy ad” because it showed a little girl picking the petals off of a daisy, when all of a sudden a strong male voice begins an ominous countdown to zero, after which an atomic explosion with a huge mushroom cloud covered the screen.

The disingenuous implication was either you vote for LBJ, or you’ll be voting for the death of your nation’s children. President Lyndon Johnson won in a landslide … by any means necessary.

Resisting Donald Trump

The leftists’ all-out assault against Trump began on June 16, 2015, when Trump announced he was running for the presidency of the United States. Within minutes, almost every major news network was declaring that Trump had called every Mexican coming into the United States illegally drug smugglers, rapists and criminals, even though Trump had clearly added, “And some, I assume, are good people.”

The torrent of lies and displays of verbal violence against Trump haven’t been confined to the news networks or his political opponents — famous left-wing celebrities have come looking for their pound of flesh as well.

Pop rock star Madonna said, “Yes, I have thought an awful lot about blowing up the White House.”

Talk show host and comedian Bill Maher recently stated that “one way you get rid of Trump is a crashing economy. So, please, bring on the recession.”

And Monday after Trump’s historic meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Hollywood’s largest director of alleged documentaries Michael Moore tweeted to the world: “Arrest Trump when Air Force One lands. I want to see him in chains.”

Now why would these celebrity leftists possibly desire to bomb the White House, crash our economy and see a U.S. president taken away in chains? It’s because leftists do not respect our nation’s capital or the office of the presidency, and they have less than zero concern for those in America who are struggling from paycheck to paycheck to survive.

The hardened left’s only ambition has always been to achieve maximum power and full control over our lives. The left desires to dictate precisely how much money we will be able to keep from what we have worked to earn, what politically correct social propaganda our children will study in school and what words and ideas we will be allowed to express.

If current trends continue, we will even need federal governmental approval to place plastic straws in our ice-filled drinks.

Make no mistake about it: The left aims to take total control over America and our lives through their steady stream of lies … and by any means necessary.



Lib Asks Man ‘When Was America Great,’ Gets 1 of Best Answers We’ve Ever Heard

When President Donald Trump announced on Monday evening that he had nominated Judge Brett Kavanaugh to serve on the Supreme Court, protests and counter-protests quickly broke out both in opposition and support of the nominee on the steps of our nation’s highest court.

One of the counter-protesters was a black man named Ricardo Caldwell who spoke with a reporter for Breitbart News about an interaction and conversation he’d had with one of the protesters who opposed Kavanaugh, President Trump and seemingly the nation of America as a whole.

Caldwell, who was wearing a red “Make America Great Again” cap, related how the woman he spoke with had asked pointedly “when was America great,” implying that the nation has never truly been “great” — typical tripe put forward by anti-American leftists.

The man’s answer to the protester’s snarky query was quite possibly better and of deeper substance than any heard by most of the supposed intellectuals and highly intelligent pundits commonly seen pontificating on cable news.

Caldwell first described how the protester barely even gave him an opportunity to answer her question about the message on his hat and instead seemed intent on provoking an emotional response instead of an actual dialogue.

“What she was talking about was slavery — I guess she feels that since I’m black I have to relate to slavery and that’s gotta be a ‘hot button issue,'” he stated.

“Nevermind the fact that we have never been a slave, don’t know anyone (who’s been a slave) and I’m not a slave, of course,” he continued.

He pointed to his hat as he noted that she had asked “when was America great” and recalled that his answer had been: “America has been great from the very start because this nation was founded on the principles of freeing us from tyranny.”

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“OK, there was slaves and so forth, but there were a lot of all colors — let’s say white — in this nation that did not feel like that was correct and this nation from that time has been moving out of tyranny, from bondage in one way or another, whether it be from Britain or whether it be from slavery as a whole,” he continued.

“In case she doesn’t know, there was a civil war, and in part … a whole lot of white people, if you look at history, died because they wanted this nation and people like myself to be free,” he added.

After taking a moment to compose himself as he spoke about his great love of this country, Caldwell stated, “Because this nation gives you the right to move yourself up out of any poor, bad position that you’re in like no other nation.”

“While some nations might step on you and say ‘hey, you’re gonna stay like that,’ or have the classism, we don’t,” he continued.

“What she’s saying about ‘this nation is horrible,’ basically saying ‘this nation is full of racists’ and I should be stupid enough to believe that when I’m sitting right here and see people who are nice of all colors that do things and work together, and this fool wants to take us back to a time when everybody hated each other,” he added.

This patriotic man hit the nail on the head with his response.

It’d be great if the so-called intellectuals and pundits who pontificate on all manner of America and America’s history would take note of this man’s answer and spend some time expounding on how our nation has always been great, and despite obvious and admitted shortcomings, we have continued to move past those issues and continue to make our nation greater all the time.



WOW: Huge California City Allowing ‘Non-Citizen’ Voter Registrations

Democrat officials in San Francisco, California are allowing “non-citizens” to register to vote for the upcoming election in November for the city’s Board of Education.

According to The Daily Wire, liberal city officials admitted on Monday that they have been helping illegal aliens register to vote ahead of the city’s elections.

City Supervisor Norman Yee said, “We want to give immigrants the right to vote,” endorsing the idea of all citizens have the right to vote, even if they broke the law to enter a country they are not authorized or permitted to be in.

During an interview with ABC-7, Supervisor Sandra Lee Fewer, who represents District 1, said city leaders and community organizers believe illegal aliens should be allowed to register to vote.

In order to vote, illegal immigrants must live in San Francisco, be at least 18-years-old, and be the parents, legal guardians, or caregivers of children who live in the city and are under the age of nineteen.

Thankfully, not everyone in California believes this resolution is a good idea.

California Republican National Committee member Harmeet Dhillon said she voted against the measure in 2016 and thinks something must be done now before it could become a state-wide measure.

“The reason I voted against it is that I think the right to vote is something that goes along with citizenship and should be.”

“I don’t think that people who have otherwise tenuous ties to San Francisco given their lack of legal residence should be making long-term decisions about that structure and process.”

When will the state learn that it should be prioritizing legal citizens, not those who broke the law to infiltrate the nation?



Trump says Europe to discuss auto tariffs

US President Donald Trump has said European leaders are coming to Washington next week to try to hammer out a deal focused largely on car tariffs, while his top economic adviser has accused Chinese President Xi Jinping of holding up a US-China trade deal.

Trump, speaking to reporters at the White House, said that European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker's visit will discuss car tariffs, which he cited as "the big one" among US-EU trade irritants.

Trump considers the EU's 10 per cent tariff on cars to be unfair compared to the US' 2.5 per cent tariff, although the United States maintains a 25 per cent tariff on pickup trucks.

"They're going to be coming on July 25th to negotiate with us. We said if we don't negotiate something fair, then we have tremendous retribution. Which we don't want to use, but we have tremendous powers," Trump said.

Trump has threatened to levy higher tariffs, as much as 25 per cent on imported cars, and his Commerce secretary, Wilbur Ross, is conducting a study on whether vehicle and parts imports threaten national security.

Larry Kudlow, who heads the White House Economic Council, said separately at an investment forum in New York that he has been told that Juncker would be "bringing a very important free trade offer" to Trump on his visit.

Kudlow said he believed Xi has blocked progress on a deal to end duelling US and Chinese tariffs. He added that lower-ranking officials want a deal, including Xi's top economic adviser Liu He, but Xi has refused to make changes to China's technology transfer and other trade policies.

"So far as we know, President Xi, at the moment, does not want to make a deal," Kudlow said at the Delivering Alpha conference.

China could end US tariffs "this afternoon by providing a more satisfactory approach" and taking steps that other countries are also calling for, he said.

These included cutting tariff and non-tariff barriers to imports, ending the "theft" of intellectual property and allowing full foreign ownership of companies operating in China, Kudlow said.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


19 July, 2018  

Terror Expert on What He Saw Going into Summit: Media Is Completely Off-Base

There was great consternation and outrage among the media and Democrats — as well as some Republicans — following President Donald Trump’s summit in Helsinki, Finland, with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

While the harsh criticisms and shouts of “treason” from the hard left and NeverTrump right are more than a little disconcerting, they are not the least bit surprising as that sort of reaction has become rather predictable in this day and age.

Indeed, the stage was set ahead of the summit for just such a reaction by the media and Democrats, who displayed their “glaring hypocrisy” with regard to their coverage of Trump’s diplomatic meeting as opposed to the diplomatic meetings held by former President Barack Obama or former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

That was the message delivered on “Fox & Friends” on Sunday morning by former U.S. Army Special Forces member and anti-terrorism expert Jim Hanson, who pointed out the disparate ways in which Trump, Obama and Clinton were treated by the establishment and media following their particular dealings with Russia.

Co-host Pete Hegseth began the segment by recalling Clinton’s embarrassing attempt in 2009 to hit the “reset” button with Russia, using a hokey red plastic button that actually had the wrong Russian word printed on it to symbolize the development in U.S./Russian relations.

“And Hillary walks into that meeting asking for nothing with her giant button that actually said ‘overcharge’ in Russian, and she’s telling them, ‘ok, you can have whatever you want from us,'” Hanson said.

“Even a more glaring example was when President Obama was talking to (then-President) Medvedev of the Russian Republic and tells him, ‘after my next election I’ll have more flexibility,'” he continued.

“Now that is him admitting that he was lying to the American public during that election cycle, and afterwards he would give Russia what they wanted. But yet, where is the outrage? Where is the press saying we should investigate that?” Hanson asked.

Hegseth asked what sort of “flexibility” Obama was referring to in that particular remark, and if it meant allowing Russia to annex Crimea, invade Ukraine or even meddle in our elections.

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“All of it, and that’s the problem Pete,” Hanson replied. “You know the entire focus and entire stature of the Obama foreign policy was cringing capitulation, it was ‘America last’ — ‘what do you guys want, what can we give you’ — and it ended up making the world a much more dangerous place.”

“In that case they were actually talking about missile defense, so the security of the entire free world for any attack by any crazed person with missiles — which could have included the Russians — is being put at risk because Obama was willing to go ahead and bow down,” Hanson said.

“And now, the media at that point in time had nothing to say, now President Trump wants to have a less antagonistic relationship with the Russians, maybe get them to stop hurting us with North Korea, stop hurting us in Syria, and all of the sudden it’s the worst thing that ever happened,” he continued.

“It’s glaring hypocrisy,” Hanson concluded, to which Hegseth could only reply, “Absolutely it is, every single day of the week.”

When Obama and Clinton reached out and tried to make nice with Russia, they were applauded by the liberal media and establishment politicians on both sides of the aisle, even as Putin and Russia took full advantage of the naive good faith extended by Obama and Clinton.

Now Trump is seeking to tone down the harsh rhetoric and smooth out the rough relationship between the U.S. and Russia and he has been attacked and smeared as some sort of Putin puppet that has sold out his own nation by the same folks who cheered similar efforts by Trump’s predecessors.

If that isn’t glaring hypocrisy, nothing is.



How Expanding Medicaid To Able-Bodied Adults Is Stripping Care For Disabled People

Over the last several years, states that expanded Medicaid to able-bodied adults have seen costs skyrocket and patients lose access to critical medical care. Yet despite this disastrous track record, many are recklessly rushing to expand Medicaid in their states.

On July 6, Medicaid expansion advocates delivered boxes full of signatures to Idaho’s secretary of state to place the issue on the state’s ballot in November. Just one day earlier, another ballot drive collected enough signatures to expand Medicaid in Nebraska. In Maine, pro-Medicaid lawmakers are preparing to raise fresh new taxes to grow the program.

The leaders of these campaigns argue that expanding Medicaid will provide health care access to the needy. Unfortunately, expanding coverage to able-bodied adults imposes enormous harm on Medicaid’s traditional enrollees, which include individuals with severe developmental and intellectual disabilities, spinal cord injuries, and traumatic brain injuries. When a state expands Medicaid, the federal government covers 95 percent of the cost of treating every able-bodied patient. However, the federal government only covers 30 to 50 percent of the cost of treating Medicaid’s sicker patient populations.

In response to these federal incentives, 33 states and the District of Columbia opted to spend billions on millions of new able-bodied Medicaid enrollees and subsequently spend less on Medicaid’s sicker patients. A common tactic states use to limit health care access to disabled Medicaid patients is to place them on waitlists. Nearly 250,000 disabled children and adults are stuck on waiting lists for home and community-based services in states that expanded Medicaid to able-bodied adults. In Maryland, more than 36,000 sick individuals must wait on average for seven years and six months before they can receive services.

Tragically, many never receive the care they need. Since 2014, an estimated 22,000 sick patients have died on waiting lists in states that expanded Medicaid. After Arkansas expanded Medicaid, the state’s waiting lists increased 25 percent while 74 children and adults suffering from physical and mental impairments died waiting for care. There is no question that poor able-bodied Americans need reliable coverage, but states should not expand Medicaid to these individuals at the expense of society’s most vulnerable patients.

Fortunately, the Trump administration recognizes there are more effective ways to expand health insurance to low-income people and is developing a series of reforms to make health insurance more affordable. For starters, the Department of Labor recently finalized new regulations to let small businesses band together and offer workers less expensive insurance through association health plans (AHPs).

By pooling workers from multiple employers into a larger risk pool, AHPs would allow small businesses to provide lower cost insurance. The health care consulting firm Avelere estimates AHPs would offer coverage that is nearly $3,000 less expensive than insurance currently provided by small businesses and $10,000 less than insurance found in the individual market.

The Trump administration is also developing rules to make health insurance more affordable for individuals without access to employer-based coverage. In early 2018, the Department of Health and Human Services introduced new regulations to allow individuals to purchase short-term insurance for up to 364 days. These types of insurance products are exempt from Obamacare’s costly insurance regulations, which allows insurers to charge 70 percent lower premiums on short-term insurance than conventional insurance.

Prior to Trump, President Obama limited the duration of short-term plans to just 90 days, which reduced their appeal to low-income consumers who can’t afford Obamacare’s expensive insurance options. Fortunately, the Trump administration expanded the duration of these plans, which will offer relief to millions of Americans who lack health insurance. But these bits of relief are temporary and only patches on a government-centered health care system that Congress needs to decentralize to ensure better services for those who most need them.

Medicaid’s proponents may claim that expanding this bloated government program is the only way to deliver health insurance to uninsured families. But the reality is state and federal policymakers have a range of tools to remove government barriers to affordable coverage. Also, unlike Medicaid expansion, these reforms won’t endanger the health of America’s most vulnerable patients. The time for Congress to address these problems with an Obamacare replacement is overdue.



VA Nursing Home Scandal Exposes Substandard Government Health Care

It seems like every time there’s a full moon, there’s a new scandal at the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs. This time it has to do with the VA’s operation of nursing home facilities for America’s veterans. The troubled agency has been hiding the poor quality of the care it provides at its veterans homes compared to similar facilities in the private sector.

A recent editorial at USA Today summarizes the findings of its investigative reporting with The Boston Globe:

Most Americans, when they think of the VA, envision a vast bureaucracy of care centers for millions of the nation’s veterans. That it is. But who knew the agency also runs a network of nursing homes?

Well, it does, and it turns out—thanks to recent coverage by USA TODAY and The Boston Globe—that many of those nursing homes suffer from health delivery concerns similar to those that plague some VA hospitals and clinics.

About 46,000 veterans annually are cared for in 133 of these homes nationwide. Some are located on Department of Veterans Affairs hospital campuses, and some are separate facilities.

The VA rates these nursing homes for quality, but internal appraisals showing that 60 homes with the lowest ratings were kept secret from the public until reporters pressed. Moreover, in some crucial measurement standards, including reports of pain, VA homes performed substantially worse than private-sector alternatives....

It’s a problem that exists because politicians have exempted the VA’s bureaucrats from the transparency requirements imposed upon private-sector nursing home facilities.

Under federal regulations, private nursing homes are required to disclose voluminous data on the care they provide. The federal government uses the data to calculate quality measures and posts them on a federal website, along with inspection results and staffing information. The regulations do not apply to the VA.

The VA has “got this whole sort of parallel world out there that’s hidden,” said Robyn Grant, director of public policy and advocacy at the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care. “I still can’t get over that this information is not available to people who are looking for a veteran’s home. That’s just unacceptable.”

That doesn’t mean that the VA’s bureaucrats don’t know how bad the care provided at its nursing home facilities has been. Not only do they know, they’ve been hiding the problem from the public since the beginning of the Obama administration:

The VA has relied for more than a decade on an outside company, Wisconsin-based Long Term Care Institute, to conduct inspections of VA nursing homes and report back to the agency.

The VA banned the public release of institute reports after the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review in 2009 published the findings from one report detailing “significant issues” at the VA nursing home in Philadelphia, including poor resident grooming and pest control. In one case, a patient’s leg had to be amputated after an infection in his foot went untreated for so long his toes turned black and attracted maggots.

The VA said the reports are internal quality assurance documents “protected” from disclosure under federal law. However, in their announcement last Tuesday releasing the nursing homes’ star ratings, VA officials said they would also release the long-term care reports. They didn’t say when.

Not that the VA’s internal ratings of its care match up well with private sector nursing home facilities. The VA’s bureaucrats appear to be systematically overrating their performance.

Even higher-ranking VA nursing homes scored below private nursing homes on individual quality measures last year, the internal documents show.

The VA assigned three stars to its nursing home in Livermore, California, even though the facility scored worse on average than private facilities on six of 11 criteria. Residents reported being in pain at dramatically higher rates and experienced general declines and developed sores at slightly higher rates.

There’s much more to the story, especially about the personal dimensions of how the VA’s substandard care at its nursing homes has harmed a number of veterans.

From a public-policy perspective, however, the story illustrates how government-provided health care is not only failing the Americans who are dependent upon it, but also how poorly the health care provided by the agency at its 133 nursing home facilities compares with the nearly 16,000 nursing homes that operate in the private sector outside of the VA system.

At a minimum, the VA’s role in operating nursing homes should be reduced, so that veterans not requiring specialized care unique to their health status as veterans are free to choose nursing homes in the private sector, with the VA contributing funds to their care at those higher-quality facilities.



Hater Arrested For Stealing Campaign Signs That Had a GPS Tracking Device

Congressman Tom Reed, a Republican representative seeking re-election in New York’s 23rd District, grew a little weary of having his campaign signs stolen.

The signs feature the phrase “Extreme Ithaca Liberal,” a shot at the opposition party in the area who have resorted to extreme platforms and now extreme measures to combat Republicans.

And it’s not the first time they’ve disappeared. Volunteers for a Democrat opponent were caught removing signs while still wearing their campaign stickers in 2018. Another woman admitted taking them down because they were “rude” earlier this month.

With a pattern firmly established, Reed’s campaign got clever and installed a GPS tracking device in one of their signs.

Sure enough, an activist from a prominent “resistance” group in the area was tracked down and confronted when the sign disappeared.

Reed’s campaign manager Nick Weinstein showed up on the doorstep of Gary McCaslin, to which the accused took exception to being tracked down.

“I can’t believe this, Nick. You tracked this sign to my house?” an exasperated McCaslin asked. “Is Tom Reed that desperate that he has to put little thing like that inside of a sign and track it?”

Weinstein was able to get the sign returned but McCaslin refused to return the tracker, instead suggesting they call the police.

“So we did,” the campaign wrote on their website. “And, after law enforcement reviewed our videos, Gary McCaslin was charged with petit larceny, punishable by up to a year in jail and a one thousand dollar fine.”

Weinstein accused Reed’s opponents of being “willing to go to criminal lengths to try and hide their Extreme Ithaca Liberal agenda from the public.”

McCaslin, who is scheduled to appear in court on July 19th, had his lawyer argue that he was simply a citizen acting “out of decency” by picking up the signs, or as he called it, “taking out the trash.”



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


18 July, 2018  

Vladimir Putin Just Gave Robert Mueller A MASSIVE Offer

The Democrat "Russia" narrative falls further apart

The meeting between President Trump and Russian President Putin ended with a firestorm.

Many people were mentioned during the Press Conference following the meeting, including Hillary Clinton, George Soros, Robert Muellers, the media, and many more.

At the beginning of the Press Conference, Trump said, “I would rather take a political risk in pursuit of peace than to risk peace in pursuit of politics. I will not make decisions on foreign policy in a futile effort to appease partisan critics, the media, or Democrats who want to resist and obstruct.”

Mueller was later given an offer by Putin to question the indicted Russians.

According to CNBC:

During a joint press conference, Putin said Russia would allow the special counsel to “send an official request” to the Kremlin to question the 12 Russian intelligence officers charged with crimes related to election meddling just three days earlier by Mueller.

Trump said Putin “offered to have the people working on the case come and work with their investigators with respect to the 12 people. I think that’s an incredible offer.”



Russian President Vladimir Putin revealed what his meeting with President Trump was about in an interview with Fox News

“I think we should be grateful to our staff and our aides who spent several last months working with one another and not just in the preparations of this summit,” Putin said. “I’m referring to the effort of our agencies across the board who worked in even the very sensitive areas, sensitive both for Russia and the United States.”

“Primarily, I refer to the counter-terrorism efforts today, with–talking with President Trump, we agreed that terrorism is a greater threat than it seems at first. Because, God forbid, if something happens, if there is a terrorist attack using the weapons of mass destruction, if they get their hands to weapons of mass destruction, it may have devastating ramifications. And so, our military, our special agencies, do establish cooperation in this particularly important area.”

Putin also told Wallace that Putin and Trump talked about the Iranian nuclear program and North Korea.

“We also discussed the Iranian nuclear program. We discussed what we can do to improve the situation with North Korea. I’ve pointed out, and I will point out again, that I think that President Trump contributed a lot, that he did a lot to settle this issue"

“But in order to achieve complete denuclearization of the peninsula it will take international guarantees, and Russia stands ready to make its contribution to the extent that will be necessary. So, we can say that there are several issues of crucial importance for us — this and some others — we are starting to achieve some understanding which gives us sufficient ground to say that some things — a lot of things changed for the better during today’s meeting.”



Cold War ended, difficulties in Russia-US relations don't have any objective reasons - Putin

There are no objective reasons for Moscow and Washington not to get along, said Russian President Vladimir Putin speaking first after more than three hours talks with US President Donald Trump.
“We’ve reviewed the current status and prospects of the Russia-US ties, key issues of the international agenda. It’s obvious that the bilateral relations are undergoing a difficult stage, but these difficulties, tensions between our countries have no objective reasons. The era of ideological confrontation between our countries is long gone, the situation in the world has changed drastically,” Putin said.

The talks reflected “shared wish” of the two presidents to fix the US-Russia relations and envision the first steps to do so, Putin added.

The US and Russia are facing new challenges nowadays, differing drastically from the ones of the Cold War era, Putin said, naming regional conflicts, spread of terrorism, organised crime, ecology and economy risks.

Trump again asked his Russian counterpart about the alleged Russian meddling into the 2016 presidential elections, Putin revealed, stating that he replied exactly the same as the last time. Russia has not meddled into the internal affairs of the US, Putin said, adding that if any real evidence to the contrary is provided, Moscow will cooperate.

Russia’s President described the talks with his US counterpart as “constructive and sincere,” adding, however, that such meeting was not enough to address “everything piled up.”



Trump's Real Tariff Strategy

The trade wars that economists predicted would follow President Trump's raising of tariffs against various nations and trading blocs around the world have officially begun.

China announced last Friday that it was matching $34 billion in U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports with an equal level of tariffs on U.S. goods coming into China. The American imports targeted include soybeans, lobsters, SUVs and whiskey.

China said it is responding to 25% taxes levied by the U.S. on Chinese industrial products coming into America. The Chinese economic ministry claims the Trump administration is guilty of "trade bullying" and that the U.S. had begun the "biggest trade war in economic history."

Trump probably takes that latter statement as a compliment, but for the Chinese to accuse the U.S. of being trade bullies is more than a bit hypocritical.

China reached its status as second-largest economy in the world through a lot more than just having a large, hard-working population. Currency manipulation, breaking trade agreements, rigging contracts with foreign companies, industrial espionage — China's done it all. The problem for the Chinese now is that the president of the United States is looking to do more than just shake his fist.

Trump has stated since his campaign that he wanted to punish the countries that have taken unfair advantage of America in international trade. That list includes Canada, Mexico, the European Union and China. All these nations are big trading partners with the U.S., but they have all placed tariffs and trade barriers to keep America's strongest companies from being able to compete in their markets while prying open America's market and making it accessible to cheaper foreign goods.

This has been going on for years, but economic globalists, at least three previous presidents and many members of Congress have done little more than lament America's trade deficit with a shrug, as if to ask, "What are ya gonna do?" Well, Trump came up with an answer to that half-baked question.

It's hard to know if Trump's tariffs on foreign goods will have the desired effect of motivating our trade partners to play fair. There are many economists who are against tariffs under any circumstances, even if the alternative means America getting hammered by trade agreements that tilt in favor of foreign partners. These people claim that we should use the World Trade Organization to press our case for better trade practices.

The WTO has supported the U.S. consistently in its trade disagreements with China, but the process is long and arduous and its enforcement regime moves painfully slow. China has learned to play the bureaucratic wrangling of the international body to its advantage, changing its tune to suit any given situation.

The media has portrayed the coming trade wars as Trump's fault. It conveniently leaves out the part of the story that reveals Trump is responding to foreign tariffs and trade restrictions, not causing them. The media complains that Trump's actions will bring an end to free trade. This claim is meant to gin up anti-Trumpers, many of whom don't support free trade anyway. Besides, we don't really have free trade now. America operates in a sea of tariffs, fees and taxes that make international business needlessly more complex and costly than it needs to be.

This is not to say that Trump's actions don't have the potential to cause harm. International stock markets and consumer prices on goods in affected industries are stable so far, but the real trade war has only just begun. Many analysts note that they have already baked in some of the cost of a trade war between the U.S. and its partners, but no one can predict what will happen if this drags on for weeks or months.

Trump supporters in the farm belt are still with the president, counting on his business skill and his courage to face down China to get them through. Again, their views may change if things drag on and they start to feel the heat from higher prices and shrinking foreign markets. And these people may feel it first. Foreign countries are making a point of retaliating against Trump's tariffs by targeting industries in states he won in 2016.

Any trade policy that costs American jobs is a bad policy, but so is one that maintains a meager status quo that does not grow the U.S. economy. That's the policy we've had for several years, and Trump wants to change that. He has an advantage in that the American economy is strong and growing right now. He may be calculating that the U.S. can absorb a mild hit caused by a trade war if it means getting our trading partners to change their ways.

There is no good time for a trade war, but if it has to happen, then now may be that time.



Illegal immigration foes move to bypass liberal legislatures, take anti-sanctuary measures to voters

There’s virtually no chance that the uber-progressive Oregon legislature would ever repeal the state’s oldest-in-the-nation sanctuary law, which is why locals worried about illegal immigration have turned to the voters.

The Stop Oregon Sanctuaries campaign submitted roughly 110,000 signatures last week to qualify an anti-sanctuary measure for the November ballot, more than the 88,000 required, stunning liberal activists and laying the groundwork for a landmark ballot battle.

“This has national ramifications and our opponents know that,” said Cynthia Kendoll, president of Oregonians for Immigration Reform, which led the petition drive. “The thing that people don’t realize is that very seldom do citizens get to vote on immigration issues. They’re always legislated upon us. And that’s particularly the case in Oregon. We never get a say.”

Oregon may be ahead of the game, but efforts to bypass lawmakers and bring sanctuary repeals before the voters are gaining interest as the number of jurisdictions adopting measures aimed at thwarting federal immigration law explodes.

As of May, 564 states and localities had adopted sanctuary policies, growing by 650 percent during the Obama administration and nearly doubling during President Trump’s first year, according to the Federation for American Immigration Reform.

The flurry of sanctuary activity has prompted a backlash: In California, more than a dozen localities have passed ordinances or resolutions against the state law, but so far no state sanctuary measure has been repealed.

“I think there’s going to be more of a movement as people realize that enforcement of our laws is good because it protects the community,” said Shari Rendall, FAIR director of state and local director. “I think people are very tired of our laws not being enforced.”

One of those is Don Rosenberg, an “angel” father whose son Drew was killed in a 2010 car crash in San Francisco with a Honduras man who had entered the country illegally but was granted temporary protected status.

Mr. Rosenberg is spearheading the Fight Sanctuary State campaign, which was cleared Tuesday to begin gathering signatures for a proposed initiative, the Community Protection Act, to reverse state laws on sanctuary status and driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants.

The initiative, which needs 365,880 signatures to qualify for the 2020 ballot, comes after organizers pulled a previous referendum campaign to repeal Senate Bill 54, the 2017 law restricting state and local cooperation with federal immigration authorities.

Fight Sanctuary State has framed the campaign as a battle between citizens and the Democratic state legislature and governor, insisting that “only the Community Protection Act will end sanctuary policies in California.”

“Who will save California from illegal immigrant violence?” says one social-media post. “Not Sacramento! Not the courts!”

In Humboldt County, California, the board of supervisors has decided to let the voters decide, agreeing Tuesday to place a measure on the November ballot asking whether the county should adopt sanctuary status for illegal immigrants.

A proposed Nevada initiative to prevent the state and cities from implementing sanctuary laws suffered a setback in May when the Nevada Supreme Court ruled that a portion of the ballot language was “deceptive and misleading.”

The legal challenge, brought by the American Civil Liberties Union, illustrated another challenge for proposals to repeal sanctuary laws: They’re up against powerful foes.

After signatures were submitted for Stop Oregon Sanctuaries, foes held press conferences in Portland and Salem to unveil Oregonians United Against Profiling, a coalition of more than 80 groups aimed at defeating the proposal, known as Initiative Petition 22.

“For 30 years, Oregon’s sanctuary law has protected Oregonians against unfair racial profiling,” said Andrea Williams, executive director of Causa, at Monday’s event. “Getting rid of this law opens the door to serious harassment and civil rights violations of our friends, coworkers, and family members simply because somebody may be perceived to be an undocumented immigrant.”

Ms. Kendoll disputed the racial-profiling charge. “This doesn’t have anything to do with race in anyway shape or form, but that’s always the card they play because they’ve got nothing else,” she said.

She said she fully expects to be outspent if the measure qualifies—the opposition has already lined up support from Nike, Columbia Sportswear and labor unions—but she also knows how to win a campaign on a shoestring budget.

In 2014, her group qualified a veto referendum of Oregon’s newly passed law giving driver cards to illegal immigrants. Voters repealed the state law by 66 to 34 percent, even though Ms. Kendoll said her side was out-fundraised by 11 to 1.

“When we did Measure 88 they were very confident, even cocky, that they had the state sewn up,” she said. “And they just got blown away. So this time I think they’re going, ‘We can’t let that happen again.’”

Going the initiative route means doing it the hard way, she said, but organizers have little choice in deep-blue Oregon.

“The only way to move the needle at all in this state is via the initiative process,” Ms. Kendoll said. “It’s very grassroots, it’s very time-consuming, but we collected signatures from every corner of this state, and people are just fed up. They’re fed up with policies that have carved out a niche, a protected class of people that are here illegally. Why are we doing that?”

As a result, she said, “we have no doubt that if this qualifies for the ballot that it will pass.”

What’s more, she believes that privately that the opposition agrees, given their efforts to stop the issue from going before the voters.

As she tells her foes, “You don’t want this to get on the ballot. You’re fighting to keep it off the ballot. So my thinking is, you know how it’s going to turn out.”



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


17 July, 2018  

AMERICA GREAT AGAIN: Jobless Claims Hit 49 Year Low — Not Seen Since 1969!

Jobless claims throughout the United States continued to plummet in the first week of July, hitting the lowest levels seen in nearly half a century as the economy continues to roar to life under President Trump and the GOP-controlled Congress, reports Hannity.com.

According to Market Watch, new benefit claims dropped by roughly 20,000 in early July to just 214,000 applications; hitting a 49-year low and smashing expectations.

The number of people losing their jobs and seeking benefits has totaled fewer than 250,000 each week since last September. That’s an unusually low number for an unusually long time, reflecting the healthiest U.S. jobs market at least since the dot-com boom at the end of the 1990s.

“The number of claims last week was the third lowest of the current nine-year-old economic expansion that began in mid-2009,” continues Market Watch. “The last time jobless claims were consistently lower was in 1969.”

The strong economic data points to a potential disaster for Democrats heading into the 2018 midterm elections, with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi bizarrely claiming the booming job market is “reckless” for American workers and middle class families.



MN: Trump tariffs boost iron mining

Taconite is a low grade iron ore

When Jim Bailey lost his oil fracking job last year, the Bemidji resident took a chance relocating his family to Hibbing, which lies in the heart of the Iron Range and its boom-or-bust economy.

Bailey and his wife, Tracy, bought the shuttered Courtyard Cafe on historic Howard Street. In December, they received some splashy company when the large BoomTown Brewery & Woodfire Grill opened a block up the road.

Not far away, cranes and cement trucks are cranking out factory additions at the pipemaker Iracore International, the truck cooling-system maker L&M Radiator and the custom manufacturer Range Steel Fabricators.

Stores also are opening, and anecdotes of a healthier economy echo across Minnesota’s Mesabi Range, an ore-rich swath that rambles for 110 miles and has seen thousands of layoffs in recent years as the taconite industry weathered a severe slump.

“Since we got here we noticed there is more activity in the area and more people in the streets,” said Tracy Bailey while dashing to serve a customer pancakes. “We have been really busy.”

The level of activity has surprised some locals, but the reason behind it is clear: The iron ore companies are healthy again. Idled plants are reopened, with 2,000 employees back to work.

With residents working again — and some of the operations expanding — people are eating out more, shopping and spending more cash in general in their communities, Phillips said. “We are having another boom to an extent,” Phillips said.

Manufacturers and iron shipping firms across the region report business has improved greatly since late 2016. They note a host of factory expansions, street repairs, fresh upticks in product orders from the big mines and taconite-laden ships leaving Duluth’s harbor.

“Last year was the largest iron ore tonnage shipped through the Port of Duluth-Superior in a decade,” said Adele Yorde, spokeswoman for the Duluth Seaway Port Authority.



Explaining American Leftists: Part I

Dennis Prager

As I watch a great number of my fellow Americans and virtually all of the mainstream media descend further and further into irrational and immoral hysteria — regularly calling the president of the United States and all of his supporters Nazis, white supremacists and the like; harassing Republicans where they eat, shop and live; ending family ties and lifelong friendships with people who support the president; declaring their opposition to Trump and the Republican Party the “Resistance,” as if they were American reincarnations of the French who fought real Nazis in World War II; and so on — I ask myself: What is going on? How does one explain them?

Here are some answers:

1.) Naïveté

Many Americans are naïve, about life, about good and evil, and about America. They don’t realize how rare America is and how good they have it. This mass naïveté was vividly expressed by the reaction of tens of thousands of mostly white middle-class Americans to then-candidate Barack Obama in 2008, when he was campaigning in Columbia, Missouri. Obama announced, “We are five days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America.”

I frequently play the recording of Obama’s statement on my radio show not only to explain a basic difference between Right and Left — the Left believes America needs to be fundamentally transformed, while the Right thinks America needs to be incrementally improved — but also for people to hear the crowd’s reaction.

Very few contemporary American recordings are as depressing as the ecstatic and prolonged cheering the crowd gave that terrible promise from Obama. I believe it is not an exaggeration to say that had he announced a cure for cancer, the cheering could not have been louder and probably would not have been longer.

Why would middle-class Americans — people who have more affluence, more opportunity, better health, better health care and more liberty than almost anyone alive in the world today, and certainly than anyone who ever lived — thunderously applaud a call to fundamentally transform their decent country?

One answer — one of many, as we will see — is naïveté.

Earlier this year, I had a debate/dialogue with two left-wing students at the University of California, Berkeley. I thought debating left-wing students, rather than giving a speech, would accomplish two objectives: deter left-wing protesters from disrupting my appearance and enable young people at Berkeley and around the world (via the Internet) to hear differences between Right and Left clearly spelled out. Both aims were achieved.

My final question to them was “Do you believe people are basically good?” Without a moment’s pause, both students said yes.

I told them they think that way because they live in such a decent country. It is easy to remain naïve in America, where most are insulated from the suffering inflicted on so much of humanity in deeply corrupt, poverty-stricken and war-torn societies. Nevertheless, given the way humans have treated one another throughout history, and only two generations after Auschwitz, only the naïve can believe people are basically good. And since no Western religion (i.e., any religion based on the Bible) has ever posited that people are basically good, this naïveté is abetted by secularism, which allows for the pursuit of knowledge but destroys wisdom.

Only the naïve — or willfully ignorant — could equate support for Donald Trump with Nazism. Are most Israeli Jews Nazis? Are a third of America’s Jews Nazis? (Many on the Left would probably answer yes, which gives you an idea how mean and sick many on the Left are.)

2.) Boredom

Boredom, at least in our time, is the most overlooked source of evil. In the past, before people went to college and abandoned religion — the two greatest reasons there is so much moral idiocy in our time — people knew how dangerous boredom was. “Idle hands are the devil’s workshop” was a commonly used aphorism that wouldn’t even make sense to most young people today.

By bored I am not referring to a lack of things to do. There is more opportunity to do and experience things today than ever before. By bored I mean a deep boredom of the soul, what the French call “ennui.” This is the boredom that emanates from lack of purpose and a yearning for excitement.

The combination of affluence and secularism produces boredom as surely as the combination of hydrogen and oxygen produces water. Without affluence, people have a built-in purpose: obtaining food and shelter, supporting oneself and one’s family, etc. And religion, with or without affluence, likewise has always provided people with meaning. Without religion, therefore, purpose is often lost. Add to that the number of people who are not married and do not have children (also a result of the combination of affluence and secularism) and you remove another universal source of meaning.

A disproportionate percentage of those on the Left (not traditional liberals) do not lack for material needs, have no religion and are single and/or childless. Those left-wing screamers you see in restaurants, the left-wing mobs on campus, the left-wing “antifa” thugs and the left-wing Black Lives Matter demonstrators who close down bridges and highways do not generally consist of married people with children who attended church the previous Sunday.

These people find this lack of purpose assuaged by leftism. It provides meaning and excitement, a very heady combination.

These are a few explanations. In Part II I will offer others.



Impact of ‘zero tolerance’ on display in Texas immigration court. One after another, asylum seekers are ordered deported

Very few are real asylum seekers.  They are just seeking a lifestyle upgrade

Sitting before an immigration judge in this south Texas detention center Thursday, a Central American mother separated from her son pleaded for asylum.

“Your honor, I’m just asking for one opportunity to be here,” said the woman wearing a blue prison uniform and a red plastic rosary around her neck. “You don’t know how much pain it has caused us to be separated from our children. We’re kind of losing it.”

Judge Robert Powell’s face was stern. During the past five years, he has denied 79% of asylum cases, according to Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse.

“What you’re describing is not persecution,” he said.

“I’m asking for an opportunity,” the woman replied in Spanish through an interpreter.

“I’m not here to give you an opportunity.” He ordered her deported.

Immigrant family separations on the border were supposed to end after President Trump issued an executive order June 20. A federal judge in California ordered all children be reunited with their parents in a month, and those age 5 and under within 15 days. On Thursday, the administration said up to 3,000 children have been separated — hundreds more than initially reported — and DNA testing has begun to reunite families.

Port Isabel has been designated the “primary family reunification and removal center,” but lawyers here said they have yet to see detained parents reunited.

To qualify for asylum in the U.S., immigrants must prove they fear persecution at home because of their race, religion, nationality, political opinion or “membership in a particular social group,” and that their government is unwilling or unable to protect them. Most of the Central American parents detained here after “zero tolerance” fled gang and domestic violence. But that’s no longer grounds for seeking asylum, according to a guidance last month from Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions. Immigration courts are part of the Justice Department, so judges are following that guidance.

Because immigration courts are administrative, not criminal, immigrants are not entitled to public defenders. And so, each day, they attempt to represent themselves in hearings that sometimes last only a few minutes.

The courtrooms are empty. That’s because, like a half dozen others nationwide, the court is inside a fortified Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention center. Access is restricted, and may be denied. The Times had to request to attend court hearings — which are public — 24 hours in advance. After access to the facility was approved last week, access was denied to the courtrooms when guards said the proceedings were closed, without explanation.

Detainees have little access to the outside world, including their children. It costs them 90 cents a minute to place a phone call. When they do, they can be nearly inaudible. They receive mail, but when reporters wrote to them last week, the letters were confiscated and guards questioned why they had been contacted, according to a lawyer. Lawyers also said some separated parents have been pressured into agreeing to deportation in order to reunite with their children.

UNICEF officials toured Port Isabel Thursday. A dozen pro bono lawyers visited immigrants. But they were spread thin. None represented parents at the credible fear reviews, where judges considered whether to uphold an asylum officer’s finding that they be deported.

Immigration Judge Morris Onyewuchi, a former Homeland Security lawyer appointed to the bench two years ago, questioned several parents’ appeals.

“You have children?” he asked a Honduran mother.

Yes, Elinda Aguilar said, she had three. “Two of them were with me when we got separated by immigration, the other is in Honduras,” said Aguilar, 44.

“How many times have you been to the U.S.?” the judge asked.

Aguilar said this was her first time. The judge reviewed what Aguilar had told an asylum officer: That she had fled an ex-husband who beat, raped and threatened her. “He told you he would kill you if you went with another man?” the judge said.

Yes, Aguilar replied.

The judge noted that Aguilar had reported the crimes to police, who charged her husband, although he never showed up in court. Then he announced his decision: deportation.

Aguilar looked confused. “Did the asylum officer talk to you and explain my case?” she said.

The judge said he was acting according to the law.

Although she was fleeing an abusive husband, he said, “your courts intervened and they put him through the legal process. That’s also how things work in this country.”

Aguilar knit her hands. She wasn’t leaving yet.

“I would like to know what’s going to happen to my children, the ones who came with me,” she asked the judge.

“The Department of Homeland Security will deal with that. Talk to your deportation officer,” he said. Guards led her away as she looked shocked, and brought in the next parent.

Denis Cardona, 31, told the judge he fled Honduras to the U.S. with his son Alexander.

“Where is he?” the judge asked.

“He’s here, detained, but I don’t know where,” Cardona said. “I was told he’s an hour away.”

The judge reviewed Cardona’s case. It was his first time crossing the border to the U.S. He had fled threats from the MS-13 gang after a land dispute with a cousin.

“And you did not report this to authorities in your country?” the judge said.

Yes, Cardona said, “but they didn’t listen.”

“It’s difficult for police to get where we were, and also the police do not help poor people,” he said.

Why hadn’t he told the asylum officer all that, the judge asked. Cardona said he had. He leaned his head on his hand. He looked tired.

Moments later, the judge ruled.

“This is a family dispute. This is not grounds for asylum in the United States,” he said. Deported.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


16 July, 2018  

A surprising call for bipartisanship from CNN, of all sources

Why? When it was Obama who was to blame.  Leftist "flexibilty" again

Complacent Obama fan Smerconish

CNN news anchor Michael Smerconish went on a rant Saturday morning calling the Russian election meddling a “terrorist attack” after reading a tweet on air asking if he’ll hold former President Obama accountable.

“Here’s what I’m looking for, instead of this going on between liberals and conservatives, Republican and Democrats, what happened to when we were united against a common enemy?” Smerconish asked rhetorically. “This was terrorism. We were the victims of a terror strike and will the commander-in-chief on Monday hold accountable the presumed perpetrator of that terror strike?”

“Stop all the liberal, conservative red state, blue state stuff. Our partisan differences used to end at the water’s edge,” he continued.

Smerconish made the comments after reading a tweet from a viewer, which he asked for. This tweet from @SwingDriver210 said, “Will you hold Obama accountable? You say you are fair. We will see. I mean all this meddling happened under Obama and no one cares.”



Trump's tariffs revive Granite City jobs, and optimism

Grab a cup of coffee with a resident of Granite City and you’ll likely hear it said that the southern Illinois city was built around the local U.S. Steel plant, not the other way around.

It’s the locals’ way of conveying how heavily Granite City, just outside St. Louis, depends on the steel mill, both for the jobs and the sense of identity it provides.

For more than 100 years, Granite City has defined itself as a hardworking mill town, a place where young people eager to cement a solid financial future without a college degree have to look no further than the dirt and iron and fire of the local steel plant, which stretches over 2 square miles. The opportunity afforded by the plant came to a halt at the end of 2015, when the plant idled production, laying off 2,000 people.

But the first blast furnace now has been restarted and U.S. Steel is filling 800 jobs at the mill, a result of the steep tariffs that President Donald Trump announced on imported steel and aluminum earlier this year. The Trump administration has in recent months imposed tariffs on goods from Canada, Mexico and China and on Friday imposed tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese imports. That country responded by levying tariffs of its own on American-made goods.

The trade war has spurred an outcry from most U.S. businesses. In Granite City, though — which voted narrowly for Trump in the 2016 election — the tariffs are helping bring back well-paying steel jobs and lifting its economy. But even as the community of 29,000 along the Mississippi River sees better days, some residents and business owners hold out hope that the city will find another economic engine to define itself by. What that will be, they don’t know yet.

The energy shift

Nearly half of the returning 800 U.S. Steel jobs will be filled with employees who were laid off in 2015 when the plant was idled, according to spokeswoman Meghan Cox, who wouldn’t disclose salary ranges for the jobs. But there’s new blood, too, with about 56 percent of those positions going to new hires.

The restart is causing an influx of customers at Park Grill, which is adjacent to the plant and was hit hard after the 2015 layoffs. Some steelworkers eat multiple meals a day at the grill. Railroad workers, truck drivers and others who have jobs supporting the plant also stop in or place orders for burgers and barbecue sandwiches.

“I’m hoping that everything goes back to where it was, and I think it will,” Park Grill owner Mike DeBruce said. “I think it’s going to be stronger and better.”

DeBruce said he tries to ignore the “political noise” and focus on what the U.S. Steel jobs mean for his business and the town as a whole.



An Open Letter from Yale Law Students Illustrates the Decline of the Radical Legal Mind

Progressives’ anti-Kavanaugh hysteria is already in full bloom.
On Monday, Yale Law School had the audacity to do something that any and every law school would do if one of its graduates were nominated to the Supreme Court — issue a press release touting the occasion. And why not? To the extent that any conservative can be a part of the elite academic club, Brett Kavanaugh belongs. He’s a double Yale graduate (college and law school) and a former Harvard Law School professor. How did he get there? Allow the Boston Globe to tell the story:

When Elena Kagan was dean of Harvard Law School, she was in search of rising conservative legal stars. The traditionally liberal campus, the thinking went, could use a little ideological diversity with more robust debate and the challenge of different viewpoints.

Among Kagan’s hires, as a visiting professor, was a newly appointed federal appeals-court judge from Washington named Brett Kavanaugh.

Yes, that’s right. Justice Kagan hired Brett Kavanaugh at Harvard Law. He’s no radical. He’s a serious conservative legal mind, and it is entirely right and proper for a school that enrolls conservative students and even (on occasion) hires conservative professors to put out a simple press release celebrating the elevation of one of its own to the highest court in the land.

The rhetoric is amazing, reading more like a random Twitter tirade than a studied critique from the nation’s brightest legal minds. ?Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination presents an emergency — for democratic life, for our safety and freedom, for the future of our country,’ the letter reads. Yes, an ?emergency.’

Or maybe not. There’s now an open letter signed by a host of Yale Law School “students, alumni, and educators” not just declaring their opposition to the Kavanaugh nomination, but saying they are “ashamed” at Yale’s press release. To these signatories, Kavanaugh is nothing but a menace, and Yale’s celebration of his achievements is motivated by nothing more than its lust for “proximity to power and prestige.”

The rhetoric is amazing, reading more like a random Twitter tirade than a studied critique from the nation’s brightest legal minds. “Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination presents an emergency — for democratic life, for our safety and freedom, for the future of our country,” the letter reads. Yes, an “emergency.” Later, it even declares that “people will die if he is confirmed.”

Obviously, Flight 93 paranoia isn’t confined to the Trumpist right.

I do not expect a Yale progressive to support Kavanaugh; I expect progressives everywhere to rally to try to defeat his nomination. But where is the perspective? Where is the sense of proportion? Once again, increasingly radicalized Americans confront conventional politics and good-faith legal disputes and react as if the sky is falling — as if no decent human being could possibly disagree with their analysis.

And they’re saying this about Brett Kavanaugh. If there were a Mount Rushmore of establishment GOP lawyers, his face would be chiseled upon it. He’d have been a likely nominee in a Rubio or Jeb Bush administration. Stanford’s Michael McConnell, writing in Politico, said this about Kavanaugh’s role in the court:

The balance of the Court is never set in stone. Over the past two terms, Justices Stephen Breyer and Elena Kagan have more frequently broken from their more leftward colleagues to forge a more moderate path, often in conjunction with Chief Justice John Roberts. Temperamentally and jurisprudentially, Kavanaugh is more like to be part of this invigorated middle than to swing toward the extremes. It would be a good thing for the country if the Court moved in a less polarized direction.

In other words, if  Kavanaugh represents a life-threatening emergency, then virtually any originalist judge represents a life-threatening emergency.

At this point, a radical reader might nod along and say, “Yes, any originalist nominee will cost lives.” But if you look at the Yale letter, it fails to make its case. It’s a long screed claiming that, among other things, Kavanaugh is insufficiently protective of the administrative state (I wonder if any of the signatories are also demanding that Congress “abolish ICE”), overly protective of religious liberty, and lacking in sympathy for favored plaintiffs. It doesn’t contain an ounce of serious legal analysis.

Indeed, one gets the feeling that this is really all about Roe. After all, refusing to force Priests for Life to facilitate contraception access for its handful of employees — or determining the appropriate standard of judicial review for agency interpretations of governing statutes — hardly seem like decisions worthy of the apocalyptic rhetoric. But abortion-on-demand is the centerpiece of the sexual revolution, and the sexual revolution is a new American religion. The French had their Cult of Reason. The radicals have their Cult of Sex, and shame on anyone who offers respect to the heretics.

Yet even there — even on the ultimate question of the judicial wars — the letter fails to justify its alarm. After all, if Roe is overturned, abortion won’t be banned, certainly not in America’s blue bastions, and not anytime soon. The question of life and death will merely be sent back to the states and, ultimately, the people.

Remember, this open letter is no mere statement of opposition to Kavanaugh. It’s a demand that one of the country’s most respected institutions of higher learning be “ashamed” for celebrating the success of one of its graduates — a person who has a long track record of service to the academy and respect for his ideological opponents. It’s a call to enlist institutions of higher learning in a radical ideological crusade. It’s a message to conservative Americans that we hear loudly and clearly — that we’re evil, our views are not worthy of respect, and we should have no place in the highest echelons of the American academy.

To read the Yale letter is to peer into the future. It’s mainly signed by a collection of young lawyers and students who are already on a trajectory to lead the American academy, government, and economy. They represent a left-wing face of American intolerance, and that intolerance will haunt our politics for decades to come. If you think polarization is bad now, the radical students at Yale are sending a clear message: They have not yet begun to rage.



Invented "rights"

The nut wing of the Democratic Party instantly denounced judge Kavanaugh by claiming that his elevation to the High Court would threaten all sorts of “rights.”

Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) tweeted: “Our next justice should be a champion for protecting & advancing rights, not rolling them back — but Kavanaugh has a long history of demonstrating hostility toward defending the rights of everyday Americans.”

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) tweeted: “If Brett Kavanaugh is confirmed to the Supreme Court it will have a profoundly negative effect on workers’ rights, women’s rights and voting rights for decades to come. We must do everything we can to stop this nomination.”

If only these guys could get themselves elected to some sort of legislative body, they could pass laws protecting these rights!

Wait, I’m sorry. These are elected United States senators. Of all people, why are they carrying on about “rights”? If senators can’t protect these alleged “rights,” it can only be because most Americans do not agree that they should be “rights.”

That’s exactly why the Left is so hysterical about the Supreme Court. It runs to the courts to win its most unpopular policy ideas, gift-wrapped and handed to it as “constitutional rights.”

What liberals call “rights” are legislative proposals that they can’t pass through normal democratic processes — at least outside of the states they’ve already flipped with immigration, like California.

Realizing how widely reviled its ideas are, several decades ago the Left figured out a procedural scam to give it whatever it wanted without ever having to pass a law. Hey! You can’t review a Supreme Court decision!

Instead of persuading a majority of its fellow citizens, it would need to persuade only five justices to invent any rights it pleased. It didn’t have to ask twice. Apparently, justices find it much funner to be all-powerful despots than boring technocrats interpreting written law.

Soon the Court was creating “rights” promoting all the Left’s favorite causes — abortion, criminals, busing, pornography, stamping out religion, forcing military academies to admit girls and so on.

There was nothing America could do about it.

OK, liberals, you cheated and got all your demented policy ideas declared “constitutional rights.” But it’s very strange having elected legislators act as if they are helpless serfs, with no capacity to protect “rights.”

It’s stranger still for politicians to pretend that these putative “rights” are supported by a majority of Americans. By definition, the majority does not support them. Otherwise, they’d already be protected by law and not by Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s latest newsletter.

On MSNBC, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) said people storming into the streets and making their voices heard about Kavanaugh is “the remarkable part about a democracy.”

Actually, that isn’t democracy at all. Liberals don’t do well at democracy. Why don’t politicians run for office promising to ban the death penalty, spring criminals from prison or enshrine late-term abortion? Hmmm … I wonder why those “I (heart) partial-birth abortion!” T-shirts aren’t selling?

Unless the Constitution forbids it — and there are very few things proscribed by the Constitution — democracy entails persuading a majority of your fellow Americans or state citizens to support something, and then either putting it on the ballot or electing representatives who will write it into law — perhaps even a constitutional amendment.

Otherwise, these “rights” whereof you speak are no more real than the Beastie Boys’ assertion of THE RIGHT TO PARTEEEEEEEE!

Gay marriage, for example, was foisted on the country not through ballot initiatives, persuasion, public acceptance, lobbying or politicians winning elections by promising to legalize it. No, what happened was, in 2003, the Massachusetts Supreme Court suddenly discovered a right to gay marriage lurking in the state’s 223-year-old Constitution — written by the very religious John Adams. (Surprise!)

After that, the people rose up and banned gay marriage in state after state, even in liberal bastions like Oregon and California. The year after the Massachusetts court’s remarkable discovery, gay marriage lost in all 11 states where it was on the ballot.

Everywhere gay marriage was submitted to a popular vote, it lost. (Only one state’s voters briefly seemed to approve of gay marriage — Arizona, in 2006 — but that was evidently a problem with the wording of the initiative, because two years later, the voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional ban on gay marriage.)

Inasmuch as allowing people to vote resulted in a resounding “NO!” on gay marriage, liberals ran back to the courts. Still, the public rebelled. The year after the Iowa Supreme Court concocted a right to gay marriage, voters recalled three of the court’s seven justices.

A handful of blue state legislatures passed gay marriage laws, but even in the Soviet Republic of New York, a gay marriage bill failed in 2009.

And then the U.S. Supreme Court decided that was quite enough democracy on the question of gay marriage! It turned out that — just like the Massachusetts Constitution — a gay marriage clause had been hiding in our Constitution all along!

Conservatives could never dream of victories like this from the judiciary. Even nine Antonin Scalias on the Supreme Court are never going to discover a “constitutional right” to a border wall, mass deportations, a flat tax, publicly funded churches and gun ranges, the “right” to smoke or to consume 24-ounce sugary sodas.

These are “constitutional rights” every bit as much as the alleged “constitutional rights” to abortion, pornography, gay marriage, transgender bathrooms, the exclusionary rule and on and on and on.

The only rights conservatives ever seek under the Constitution are the ones that are written in black and white, such as the freedom of speech and the right of the people to keep and bear arms. Mostly, we sit trembling, waiting to see what new nonexistent rights the Court will impose on us, contravening everything we believe.

So when you hear liberals carrying on about all the “rights” threatened by Kavanaugh, remember that by “rights,” they mean “policy ideas so unpopular that we can’t pass a law creating such rights.”



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


15 July, 2018  

An interesting image from President Trump's visit to Britain

Mr Trump holds the hand of Theresa May, the British PM, as they walk up a flight of stairs.  Do I see a picture of a dynamic USA dragging along a feeble Britain?  Her PR people will be mortified.


And they pick at judge Kavanaugh

2009: In an interview in the New York Times Magazine, Justice Ginsburg offers this, er, interesting comment why she was “surprised” by the Court’s 1980 decision in Harris v. McRae, which ruled that the Hyde Amendment’s exclusion of nontherapeutic abortions from Medicaid reimbursement was constitutionally permissible:

Frankly I had thought that at the time Roe was decided, there was concern about population growth and particularly growth in populations that we don’t want to have too many of. So that Roe was going to be then set up for Medicaid funding for abortion. Which some people felt would risk coercing women into having abortions when they didn’t really want them. But when the court decided McRae, the case came out the other way. And then I realized that my perception of it had been altogether wrong.

Gee, Justice Ginsburg, would you like to tell us more about your views on those “populations that we don’t want to have too many of”?

It's pretty clear that she is a follower of Margret Sanger, birth control pioneer, and author of the "Negro Project", who did her best to limit births among the poor, particularly among blacks

Strange that among all the invective thrown at judge Kavanaugh, we have heard not a whisper about Ruth Bader Ginsburg.  Why are blacks and Leftists not following her around shouting "Resign, resign"!



Virulent Leftist hate never ceases

Before meeting with Queen Elizabeth II and Prime Minister May Friday, President Trump took a seat in Winston Churchill’s chair at Chequers. Chequers is Winston Churchill’s longtime estate. Press secretary Sarah Sanders took a photo of Trump sitting gingerly in the chair.

As is the case with many seemingly harmless things the President does, however, the photo hit a nerve on the left. Twitter users called it the “top five worst photos I’ve ever seen” and called Trump a Nazi. "I hope the ghost of Winston Churchill rips Donald Trump's nazi cock off"



Hysterical anti-Trump journalists explained


What is an ideal outcome of Trump-Putin meeting? Russian FM tells Larry King

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has shared his view on what would be an “ideal” outcome of a Trump-Putin meeting, in an interview with Larry King that covered a wide range of topics, from Crimea to NATO and Syria.

Relations between the US and Russia are now at such a low point that a mere resumption of a normal dialog following a summit between US President Donald Trump and Russian leader Vladimir Putin could already be regarded as a success, Lavrov told the veteran TV host, on his show Politicking, aired on RT America.

The top Russian diplomat called the state of relations between the two nations “unfortunate” and said that “most channels of communications established over the last eight years have been frozen, including the ones on very important issues” such as the fight against terrorism and cyber-security.

“What we have now is sporadic meetings between diplomats and military, mostly on Syria,” Lavrov said. He then explained that if Trump and Putin would manage to “re-open all the channels [of dialog] on both divisive issues … and those issues where we can usefully cooperate” he would call such an outcome of the meeting “ideal.”

The foreign minister also said he believes that a spat in bilateral relations between Moscow and Washington began at a time when the US “realized” that Russia would not just blindly and eagerly follow the western line “on everything.” Moscow, in its turn, just wants its voice to be heard and perceived as the voice of an equal partner, he added.

US interventions left more people dead than ‘dictators’ they sought to depose

Answering a question about Russia’s continued support for Syrian President Bashar Assad, whom the West openly accuses of being a “dictator,” Lavrov said that one has to be “realistic and responsible about world security” as well as about the security of their own countries, which sometimes means cooperating with “those who would help create conditions to make our people safer.”

He also drew attention to the fact that, even though Muammar Gaddafi and Saddam Hussein were dictators, “when you compare the people’s suffering during their rule and now, following the US humanitarian intervention, then the numbers of those who were killed, wounded or [forced out] of their homes now, would be hundreds of thousands more than those who had suffered” under their rule.

"We do not justify dictators,” Lavrov said, adding that, instead, Russia wants every nation to first “take every step to ensure that your actions are not reckless” before deciding to embark on any “adventure.”

“We have to see the big picture and have to think about the price of being moral just for the sake of being moral,” Lavrov said, adding that those who “ruined Iraq and Libya, now want to put Syria in the same state.”

Ever-changing rules & double standards

However, misconceptions about Russia are far from being the only issue that complicate relations between Russia and the US, as well as other western countries which are still plagued by the legacy of the Cold War, while attempting to recklessly shape the world as they see fit.

The West “tries to invent rules of [each and every] individual case and then claims that it is unique,” Lavrov said. He went on to say that “for any other issue that they might not like there will be other rules.”

The Russian foreign minister particularly slammed Western double standards on the situation with Crimea, which reverted to being Russian following a referendum in which an absolute majority voted to rejoin Russia. He said that Crimea’s referendum, which the West still refuses to recognize, was “done in a more transparent and legitimate way than the unilateral recognition of Kosovo’s independence without any referendum.”

In the case of the Falkland Islands, the UK claimed the islands’ “status was determined in a free and fair referendum by its citizens in full accordance with the UN charter” while demanding that the sanctions imposed by Argentina over this referendum be condemned, Lavrov told Larry King, adding that, in the case of Crimea, the whole situation was suddenly treated in a totally different manner. So much for the “rules-based international order,” which the western countries would claim to be so adamantly championing.

He also criticized US actions in attempting to resolve the Ukrainian crisis. He said that a dialog between Russia and the US on the issue has virtually contributed nothing to this process, as the US actually “tries to deviate radically from the Minsk Agreements each time they meet with their Russian colleagues.”

‘Atavism of Cold War’

The minister also criticized the West’s policy aimed at further strengthening NATO, against the background of a total lack of dialog with such countries as Russia. “NATO is an atavism of Cold War times,” Lavrov said, adding that its continued condemnation of Crimea’s reunification with Russia in particular is nothing but the “inertia of Cold War thinking.”

“We do not believe what NATO is doing by trying to expand further and further closer to the Russian borders by swallowing countries that do not add anything to the security of the alliance. We do not believe that this is the way to resolve the problems of today,” the foreign minister said, adding that NATO fails to “effectively address” such issues as terrorism, climate change, drug trafficking and organized crime.

NATO, which, according to Lavrov, spends 12 times more money on defense than Russia, has yet to “understand that it cannot dictate to each and every country how to handle international security matters,” the minister said. “Dialog is required,” he asserted.



Democrats plan a Soviet America where they have unaccountable power

Communists under the skin -- Tyrants in waiting

It would be an understatement to suggest that Democrats haven’t accepted or handled particularly well the election of President Donald Trump, especially as paired with Republican control of Congress and a now conservative-leaning Supreme Court, in a government ostensibly unified by the political right.

Indeed, many on the left remained engaged in what can easily be likened to a toddler’s temper tantrum nearly two years since failed Democrat nominee Hillary Clinton was soundly defeated by Trump in the 2016 election.

Now that temper tantrum has taken on a decidedly vindictive tone for some on the left, as evidenced by a lengthy piece in Politico by a political theorist named Rob Goodman, a piece titled, “Hey Democrats, Fighting Fair is for Suckers.”

The article began with the typical lamentations from the left about how Trump and Republicans are systematically destroying all of the “norms,” or unwritten rules of the political game, to seize and maintain their grip on power and influence in the country — ignorant of the fact that many of the “norms” Trump is accused of breaking were already broken by Democrats in the prior administration.

In response to the alleged destruction of political norms across the board by Trump and Republicans, Goodman suggested that Democrats should — when and if they ever resume unified control of the three branches of government, as they once held between 2008 and 2010 — take drastic steps to ensure they never relinquish their grip on power ever again.

To be sure, there is a solid contingent of folks on the left — joined by some NeverTrumpers from the GOP — who pine for the day when Democrats, or at least an establishment Republican, will take power and institute a “return to normalcy” that will re-enshrine all of the policy supposedly laid to waste by the Trump administration.

But Goodman appeared to have been inspired to urge a different route for Democrats by a new book written by political scientist David Faris about how Democrats should “fight dirty” in order to build and maintain a “lasting majority in American politics.”

That book asserts that it will be impossible for the nation to “return to Normalcy” in the aftermath of Trump, and instead posits that “Normal is over” and Democrats should act accordingly, busting any remaining norms standing in the way of their implementing a “progressive direction” for the nation that can’t be easily stopped or reversed anytime soon, if ever.

In order to achieve that “lasting majority” of progressive Democrat rule in America, Faris offered up several examples of drastic actions that could be taken by Democrats to ensure they never lose hold of their power again, which were dutifully echoed by Goodman.

That would include such actions as: “Grant statehood to D.C. and Puerto Rico, and break California in seven, with the goal of adding 16 new Democrats to the Senate. Expand the Supreme Court and the federal courts, packing them with liberal judges.”

“Move to multi-member House districts to roll back the effects of partisan gerrymandering. Pass a new Voting Rights Act, including nationwide automatic voter registration, felon enfranchisement and an end to voter ID laws. Grant citizenship to millions of undocumented immigrants, creating a host of new Democratic-leaning voters,” wrote Goodman.

Faris wrote, “Republicans have always feared that immigration would change the character of American society. Democrats should reward them with their very worst nightmare.”

None of those actions would require a constitutional amendment and could be achieved via legislation, but it would require Democrats to utterly smash any “norms” they currently hold or have held in the past with regard to protecting the foundations of our nation’s political system.

All of that said, Goodman recognized that such an effort by Democrats would inevitably bring about incredible — and justifiable — opposition from Republicans, thus the effort couldn’t use half-measures, as the right would eventually regain control and use the precedents set by the left to do the same in a tit-for-tat spiral of escalation that would inevitably lead to violence and bloodshed if not brought to a halt at some point.

The folks at Legal Insurrection could only laugh at these suggestions by Goodman and Faris and pointed out that the process of unraveling the “norms” that the left now misses so much was begun under the guidance of former President Barack Obama and former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

But at least some Democrats are being open and honest about their vindictive plans to exact vengeance on Republicans if they ever hold unified power again, and we can only encourage them to run openly on a platform of blatant political revenge as they seek to reclaim their lost power in the upcoming 2018 and 2020 elections.



Feds' new rules could stop asylum surge

The government’s citizenship agency issued new guidelines this week that will make it much tougher for many of the Central Americans streaming into the U.S. to claim asylum.

Asylum officers at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services were instructed to make asylum-seekers prove not only that they were specifically targeted in their home countries, but that their governments either condoned the persecution or were so indifferent that they might as well have been complicit.

That undercuts the standard argument given by many of the migrants making their way north from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, who describe dangerous neighborhoods and rough home lives — but struggle to prove they were victims of government-sanctioned violence.

Just proving that their governments were having trouble policing the problem is not enough, the guidance says.

The guidance also reminds asylum officers that someone who sneaks into the U.S., rather than asking for asylum through more traditional channels, is a major negative factor that can help doom asylum applications.

The guidance could head many would-be illegal immigrants off at the pass, denying them even a chance to remain on U.S. soil through bogus or ill-founded asylum claims.

“Our laws do not offer protection against instances of violence based on personal, private conflict that is not on account of a protected ground,” said Michael Bars, a spokesman for USCIS.

The guidance, dated June 11, carries out a decision handed down by Attorney General Jeff Sessions last month in which he said American asylum laws, while generous, cannot make the country an outlet for everyone facing difficulties across the globe.

Mr. Sessions said he was moving asylum back to its traditional understanding as an escape valve for people who faced persecution because of their religion, ethnicity or political beliefs.

Administration critics say the government will be cutting of a vital lifeline to tens of thousands of illegal immigrants fleeing rough conditions back home. They point to cases of people who say family members have been killed or children forced to join gangs, or husbands who made wives fear for their lives.

Yet security analysts said that over the last decade, asylum had become too nebulous, with people winning claims based on spousal abuse or gang-infested neighborhoods.

As the standards relaxed, the number of people making claims surged. Just 1 percent arriving migrants claimed asylum at the beginning of this decade, but that rate is now 10 percent.

Statistics show only about 3 percent of those will actually win their claims.

Yet just clearing the initial hurdle — claiming “credible fear” of being sent back home — is often enough to earn migrants a foothold in the U.S., getting them released into communities, where they can quickly qualify for work permits and some taxpayer benefits.

Even after they lose their cases, few are actually deported.

Smugglers, aware of the asylum “loophole,” began coaching their migrant clients on the “magic words” to use to clear the credible fear threshold and gain quick entry to the U.S.

Under the new guidance, though, officers were told to reject even pre-asylum “credible fear” claims that don’t meet the higher standards. That paves the way for the government to quickly deport them.

“Few gang-based or domestic-violence claims involving particular social groups defined by the members’ vulnerability to harm may merit a grant of asylum or refugee status,” the guidance says.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


13 July, 2018    

Brits jarred by Trump's straight talk

Writing in Britain's major Conservative newspaper, a senior journalist called Trump's recent interview about his trip to Europe an "astonishing snub to Theresa May" (the lame-duck British PM).  But Trump was just being realistic and BS free.  Below is what he said:

Trump: “It's going to be an interesting time in the UK, and it’s certainly going to be an interesting time with NATO.

“NATO has not treated us fairly but I think we'll work something out. We pay far too much and they pay far too little. But we will work it out and all countries will be happy.

“With the UK, that's a situation that's been going on for a long time. So I have NATO, I have the UK which is in somewhat turmoil, and I have Putin. Frankly, Putin may be the easiest of them all. Who would think? Who would think? But the UK certainly has a, they have a lot of things going on.”

Q: Have you talked with May since Boris left?

“No I have not. No I have not. But Boris Johnson’s a friend of mine. He’s been very, very nice to me. Very supportive. And maybe we’ll speak to him when I get over there. I like Boris Johnson. I’ve always liked him.”

Q: Should Theresa May remain in power?

“Well, that’s up to the people. I get along with her very well. I have a very good relationship. That’s certainly up to the people, not up to me.”

The journalist was  not entirely condemnatory, however. He also said:

Given the unfolding chaos at Westminster, one suspects any President would have privately felt that a meeting with Vladimir Putin would be easier than one with Theresa May. Only Donald Trump would have said so publicly. But it would, perhaps, be unfair on this occasion to condemn him for being honest.


Some Britons welcoming Trump, renewal of 'special relationship' amid Brexit jitters

There are the protests, the official snubs, the hostile petitions, the social media campaigns, the infamous orange diaper-draped baby blimp. Britons are expected to rain invective on President Trump when he arrives in the United Kingdom Thursday.

But some are ready to welcome Mr. Trump, and the dramatic meltdown over the future of Brexit this week gives a sense that the U.S. may be the only good alternative the U.K. has in the coming years.

Specifically, people express hope that Mr. Trump and embattled British Prime Minister Theresa May will propose a trade pact to help make up for potential consequences of the United Kingdom’s scheduled withdrawal from the European Union next year, which will likely cause at least short-term pain in the British economy.

“The trip is important to us getting a deal,” said Matthew Peters, 36, a schoolteacher in Stirling, Scotland. Mr. Peters said he felt it was time to renew the special relationship. “I hope he sees that Britain is a better partner in Europe than Brussels.”

Commentator Piers Morgan is openly feuding with London Mayor Sadiq Khan — a frequent target of Mr. Trump’s Twitter barbs — for allowing the blimp to be flown during the president’s stay. Mr. Morgan called it “a pathetically puerile stunt that makes Britain look woefully petty, small-minded and gratuitously offensive.”

“Whether you love or loathe Trump, for Britain to be greeting the leader of the United States of America, its greatest ally, in this way is appallingly disrespectful,” Mr. Morgan said in a fiery television debate with the mayor.

As many as 50,000 protesters are expected to hit the streets to denounce the U.S. president, who will arrive after a NATO meeting in Brussels and is slated to visit one of his golf resorts in Scotland and meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki during his weeklong trip to Europe. Leaving the White House on Tuesday, Mr. Trump joked that his meeting with Mr. Putin, head of America’s longtime Cold War rival, may be smoother than his visit to Britain, which has long boasted of a “special relationship” with Washington.

Critics say Mr. Trump’s British visit has been severely curtailed to shield the president from the protesters. Workers have put up a high metal fence around the U.S. ambassador’s central London residence where Mr. Trump will spend Thursday night, and the State Department has issued an alert warning Americans in London to keep a low profile while the president is in town.

“At first I thought [Mr. Trump] was a joke,” said Karrie Fransman, 36, a comic book artist who lives in North London. “Now I find I’m running out of things to laugh about.

“I find his policies deplorable,” she said. “I feel like we are watching a democratic country, not so dissimilar to ours, crumble at the hands of a government who spreads hate.”

Ms. Fransman’s comments reflected the sentiments of many others in the British capital. The 20-foot-high orange blimp portrays the president as an angry baby wearing a diaper and clutching a smartphone. It will be hovering over Westminster near the Houses of Parliament.

Boiling over Brexit

The anger also stems from the frustration over Brexit in this cosmopolitan city. The issue has dominated the press and politics in Britain in recent months as Mrs. May has been negotiating the country’s exit from the European bloc. British Foreign Minister Boris Johnson quit in protest Monday after saying Mrs. May conceded too much to the EU.

Ms. Fransman said Mr. Trump’s record on immigrants, Islamophobia and racial issues mirrors a worrisome nationalism that has arisen in the U.K.

“I want to send a clear message to Theresa May and Boris Johnson,” she said. “We refuse to stand quietly by as Trump spreads hate speech for the benefit of profit and our ‘special relationship.’ I fear our country might follow the U.S. and that now is the time to get out of our armchairs and protest.”

But by no means are all here embracing those sentiments. A majority of British voters opted for Brexit two years ago, said Mr. Peters, and many see it as a harbinger of Mr. Trump’s surprise election four months later.

“I think the EU is trying to stop us from making good trade deals with other countries,” said Mr. Peters. “There are some politicians in the British government who get this and want to keep good relations with the U.S. and Canada and other English-speaking allies, but too many are scared of the EU. We need to show the EU that we can go and make a deal with the U.S. just like we used to do before we joined the EU, as an equal partner.”

For many Brexiteers, Mr. Trump is a hero, one of the few Western figures to have positive things to say about an EU-U.K. divorce ahead of the momentous June 2016 referendum.

Director Robin Niblett of Chatham House, a London think tank, said the popular protests anticipated for Mr. Trump won’t necessarily be larger than those that greeted some past American presidents. British protesters staged huge demonstrations against Ronald Reagan over the deployment of U.S. nuclear missiles on the continent during the Cold War and against President George W. Bush in 2003 during the run-up to the Iraq War.

“At a popular level, it feels simply like another wave,” said Mr. Niblett. “I’m not convinced that the anti-Trump mood is more intense than those moments.”

And while some 50,000 people — and the blimp — are expected to join Friday’s protest, a counter-gathering is also being organized to welcome Mr. Trump.

Nonetheless, the analysts said many British officials are worried about Mr. Trump’s propensity to upend the status quo.

“Where the U.K.-U.S. split is emerging is not so much at the popular level,” he said. “Rather, it is that America is increasingly not trusted by those who develop policy in the United Kingdom. And that is profound and new.”

Sean Duffy, 30, a Labor Party supporter from Glasgow, Scotland, is no fan of Mr. Trump. But he said Mrs. May should listen closely to Mr. Trump because the American president won office for many of the same reasons British voters supported Brexit.

“I grew up with the people who drove Brexit to victory. They’re sick of being patronized, and any government which dismisses them will be destroyed at the next election,” said Mr. Duffy. “Brexit was a revolt against a complacent establishment that felt it was best-placed to dictate to ordinary working people what was right for their communities.”


Trump Ends Obama ‘Exception’ Rule That Gave Unions ‘Illegal’ Medicaid Cash

The Trump administration announced on Tuesday that it will end an Obama-era rule that gave an “exception” to unions so they could illegally take money from worker’s Medicaid.

According to Fox News, the Obama-era rule allowed unions to take large sums of money from state subsidies there were supposed to provide services and resources for home health workers, such as family caregivers. This rule allowed unions to steal money for years, and now President Donald Trump is stepping in.

Current federal law largely forbids states from siphoning money from Medicaid payments, which are allocated for in-home caregivers and workers.

However, Obama created an exception to the rule in 2014 that allowed states to divert a huge chunk of Medicaid money to unions.

Since it was signed into law, 11 liberal-leaning states have used the Obama rule to raise more than $200 million a year for unions. Between 2014 and 2017, unions across the country took more than $2.2 billion from Medicaid and those who need health professionals.

The Trump administration’s major announcement comes less than a month after the Supreme Court delivered a huge blow to unions and organized labor. The High Court held that non-union workers couldn’t be forced to pay agency fees to public-sector unions.

Experts project billions of dollars will now be diverted from unions.


Bartender Flips Stephen Miller the Bird, So Miller Turns Right Around & Tosses His Meal

The left has become extremely hostile to the right, particularly those in the Trump administration.

Rather than voicing their frustration through usual political means — voting or peaceful protest — leftists have taken their outrage to the private sphere, insisting that the crime of serving in the Trump administration deserves unending harassment even during private, non-work hours.

Last month, California Rep. Maxine Waters told her supporters to physically confront and harass Trump officials whenever possible so that it’s made clear to them that they’re not welcome, “anymore, anywhere.”

It seems many leftists have taken her instructions to heart, especially in our nation’s capital.

In a recent incident in downtown Washington, D.C., senior White House adviser Stephen Miller went to a local restaurant and ordered takeout sushi, The Washington Post reported.

After Miller had left the establishment with his food, a bartender from the same restaurant followed him outside. “Stephen!” he yelled.

Miller turned around, only to see the bartender with both middle fingers in the air, cursing at him.

Thankfully, Miller took the high road and didn’t throw the $80 worth of sushi in the bartender’s face. He did, however, toss it in the trash.

According to The Washington Post, “Miller threw the sushi away, afraid that someone in the restaurant had spit in or otherwise tampered with his food, he later told colleagues.”

Only a few months ago, Miller also found his face printed on “Wanted” posters placed in the area near his City Center apartment, the Washington Examiner reported.

Miller isn’t the only Trump official who has faced this kind of treatment by sneering leftists.

According to the Post, White House adviser Kellyanne Conway was in a downtown grocery store, when a man walking by with his shopping cart yelled, “You ought to be ashamed of yourself! Go look in the mirror!”

And of course, Sarah Sanders was kicked out of a restaurant while peacefully eating with her family.

Every day it becomes clearer that the party that has always claimed to be tolerant is embodying the definition of intolerance — and it’s not going to end well.


Leftist hate in Australia too

I republish below something I wrote in 2014.  It's very reminiscent of what is happening in America at the moment

I am enrolled in the electorate of Griffith, Kevin Rudd's old seat.  I used to get a nice Christmas card from Kevvy every year while he was there.  So I will be voting in the by-election caused by Kevvy's retirement.

The LNP [conservative] candidate for the by-election is Dr. Bill Glasson, a most energetic campaigner and an ophthalmologist by trade.  His father, also Bill Glasson, was a minister in the long-running Bjelke-Petersen government of Queensland.  So the present Bill has name recognition.

I was sitting in my usual Buranda brunch destination about mid-morning yesterday when Bill and a campaign assistant walked in -- also seeking brunch.  The assistant was a nice-looking young lady who might have been his daughter.  She had "Vote Bill Glasson" written all over her t-shirt so she was at any event a helper.

Bill & Co. sat down beside a lady in a green dress.  The restaurant was busy so some tables were right up against one another.  Bill chose one such table.  As the lady beside him got up to leave, she launched a furious verbal assault on Bill:  Quite egregious behaviour in a restaurant.

I was too far away to hear what she was saying and I am pretty deaf anyway but a professional actor could not have done a better job of portraying rage and hate  than this woman did  -- finger pointing, tensed-up body and all other conceivable hostile body  language.  Bill just sat there.  She gave up after a few minutes and walked out.  She must have thought of more things to say, however, as she shortly thereafter came back into the restaurant and resumed her angry tirade at Bill.

It was a most remarkable assault on a man the woman did not know personally and who has never been a member of any government.  She appeared to have been blaming Bill for something some government had done but why she blamed Bill for it was  obscure.

When I had finished eating, I went over, shook Bill's hand, introduced myself as a Griffith voter and said I would be voting for him.  I then asked him what the lady had been on about.  He said it was confused but it was something about hospitals.  All Australian public hospitals are in a mess so that might be understandable.  The government that got Qld. hospitals into a mess was however the recently departed Leftist government.  So again, why blame Bill?

I then said to Bill:  "She was full of hate, wasn't she?".  He agreed.  Just his conservative political identity was enough to fire her up.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


12 July, 2018  

The West Has Lost its Way Since the Cold War   

Marxism is still vigorous and ready to pounce despite the Soviet implosion

Jon Hall

Since the liberation of Europe’s Soviet Bloc in 1989 and the demise in 1991 of the Soviet Union itself, the West has become so pathetic that one might be forgiven for having a little wistful nostalgia for the Cold War era. At least back then, thirty years ago, Pakistan and North Korea didn’t have the bomb, China didn’t have an economy so huge that it threatened to eclipse America’s, and Europe hadn’t been invaded by millions of unassimilable Muslims allowed to just walk in.

When the Soviet Union broke up, the West had an historic opportunity to try to export freedom to Russia and make the world a better place. But we were told that the Cold War had ended and that the West had won, and that communism was dead. Some even said it was the “end of history.”

The West was deluding itself. The need of some individuals to control others and the meek acceptance of it by those being controlled may well be genetic. The idea that the gene for tyranny or oppression might have died is like thinking rudeness (or even sin) could be eradicated. The socialist authoritarianism of the Soviets didn’t end with the end of the Cold War; it regrouped, adapted, and waited.

American conservatives may be heartened by Britain’s vote to leave the socialist European Union, but have the Brits really come to their senses? Huge swaths of them still want socialism, which was recently given evidence by Oliver Wiseman, the editor of CapX. On May 11 in The Weekly Standard, Wiseman tells us about a looming threat to the U.K. in “Old Labour, Old Danger”:

Before Jeremy Corbyn was unexpectedly elected Labour leader in 2015, he led a career of far-left obscurity, catching the attention of the public now and then only thanks to his support for Hamas, Hugo Chávez, and anyone lined up on his side in what he sees as a global battle against capitalism and the West. Three years later, he is the bookmakers’ favorite to be Britain’s next leader.

But according to Wiseman, Corbyn isn’t the main threat to Britain’s future, it’s Corbyn’s fellow Marxist John McDonnell, “shadow chancellor of the exchequer,” who would take over the British economy were Corbyn to become prime minister. Wiseman writes: “It is just possible that the real drag on the British economy isn’t Brexit, but the Marxists waiting in the wings”:

According to a recent profile in the Financial Times, the members of a trade union book club that McDonnell ran in the early 1980s used to joke that he prescribed the same book every week: Das Kapital. In 2006, he said that the biggest influences on his thought were “The fundamental Marxist writers of Marx, Lenin, and Trotsky, basically.” In 2013, speaking about the financial crisis, he said, “I’m honest with people: I’m a Marxist. This is a classic crisis of the economy -- a classic capitalist crisis. I’ve been waiting for this for a generation... [For] Christ’s sake don’t waste it.” The man who could soon be in charge of the British economy is someone who sees a recession not as a time to limit economic damage, but as a chance for revolution.

One takeaway from Wiseman’s fine article is that the British people have been corrupted; they want their Big Government handouts. Wiseman reports that a majority actually support “Labour’s flagship economic policy of renationalization of utilities and the railways.” The British people may be too addled to grasp that their problems were not caused by capitalism but by the socialism they’ve had going back to Clement Attlee. Britain’s National Health Service wasn’t some creation of “rapacious” capitalists. Churchill and Thatcher couldn’t steer the U.K. completely away from socialism, because the citizenry was already hooked on “free stuff.”

I found that profile of McDonnell at the Financial Times Wiseman referred to; it’s a bit long but quite worth reading. But know that the FT gives nonsubscribers one free read only; if you leave the webpage and attempt to return you’ll be kept out. So you might want to print it or save it as a PDF right away. The print button is on Jim Pickard’s byline. The profile appeared on March 1.

McDonnell believes he is on the brink of making history, should the government collapse because of Brexit. “Our objectives are socialist. That means an irreversible shift in the balance of power and wealth in favour of working people,” he explains. “When we go into government, everyone will be in government.”

Or, as Mussolini once said, “All within the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state.” McDonnell is also inspired by the Italian Marxist Antonio Gramsci, who cleaved to a belief in cultural hegemony whereby socialism would triumph by infiltrating education, the media, and even the church.

Throughout the West, the Left has taken over the “commanding heights” of the culture. We see fatuous Hollywood actors consorting with foreign tyrants in their socialist paradises. Socialist Senator Bernie Sanders is “way cool,” and revered by maleducated young people. Socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez may soon be a member of Congress. Thirty years after the end of the Cold War a new front has opened in the Eternal War between freedom and oppression, and it’s internal.

On June 30, National Review ran “Slavoj Žižek, Fashionable Revolutionary,” a fine article by Christian Alejandro Gonzalez. Žižek is a Marxist flunky straight out of central casting, and he’s on the payroll of British and American universities. (Perhaps “academic freedom” has gone a bit too far):

“Our task today,” Žižek writes… “is to reinvent emancipatory terror.” One cannot achieve true liberation without wanton violence… we must decide: Should we embrace “revolutionary-democratic terror?”…

"During the moment of revolutionary fervor, passivity is tantamount to complicity with the forces of reaction. Anyone who does not participate in the terror is fit for elimination… Those unwilling to inflict slaughter on behalf of revolution are “sensitive liberals”…

[W]hat makes the Žižek phenomenon truly remarkable is not that he openly advocates the mass murder of civilians, not that he is taken seriously by the Western academic establishment… It is, rather, that the terror he endorses is ultimately nihilistic… Seduced by the aesthetics of revolution rather than committed to a serious pursuit of justice, Žižek’s philosophy collapses under the weight of its incoherence.

In John le Carré’s 1974 Cold War novel Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, the British Secret Service has a double agent at the very top. In the 2011 adaptation for cinema, many liberties were taken with the novel. Even so, that wasn’t enough to keep the author from appearing in a singing of the Soviet national anthem, (he’s the elderly guy on the right who stands as the anthem begins; video excerpt). One of the changes was this bit of added dialog which occurs after the mole has been brought to ground and is waiting to be sent to the USSR in a spy swap: “I had to pick a side, George. It was an aesthetic choice as much as a moral one. And the West has grown so very… ugly, don’t you think?”

But the West was rather handsome thirty years ago before the end of the Cold War. Although he may be adept at dialectics, le Carré’s traitor to the West understands very little about aesthetics and even less about morality; he’s even more deluded than those he betrayed.

If the West is indeed growing ugly, perhaps it’s because we’re becoming like the East; perhaps it’s because we give vile clowns employment at our universities. Perhaps our growing ugliness is the result of throwing in with awful ideas, like socialism. The West needs to get back to being the West.



Choking on the Cost of 'Medicare for All'
Last month, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, an outspoken socialist, beat 10-term Congressman Joe Crowley, the fourth-highest-ranking House Democrat, in the primary election for New York's 14th congressional district.

Ocasio-Cortez is a member of the Democratic Socialists of America and a former organizer for Sen. Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign. She's also a vocal advocate of "Medicare for All" -- a government takeover of America's healthcare system. Support for single-payer health care is now a requirement for securing many Democrats' votes.

But candidates who advocate single-payer on the campaign trail are increasingly balking once they actually get their hands on the levers of power. That's because single-payer is cost-prohibitive. Even the most dyed-in-the-wool leftists admit as much, after they take office and have to figure out how to pay for their campaign promises.

Single-payer's champions generally paint a lovely picture of healthcare utopia. Patients go to see the doctor of their choice whenever they like, get treatment, and leave the clinic without paying a cent. No copays, no deductibles, no cost-sharing, and no referrals -- health care is "free" at the point of service.

In reality, health care doesn't magically become free; people just pay for it outside the doctor's office, in the form of higher taxes.

Many Democrats have walked back their enthusiasm for single-payer after getting a look at the just how much public money they'd have to come up with.

Last month in North Carolina, Democratic State Representative Verla Insko moved to kill her own pro-single-payer bill. An assessment from the state legislature's Fiscal Research Division pegged the cost of single-payer at $70 billion, $42 billion of which would have to come from the state. That latter figure is almost twice the state budget.

The Civitas Institute, a free-market think tank in North Carolina, estimated that implementing single-payer would cost a whopping $101 billion just in year one.

North Carolina's tale is only the latest example of single-payer dreams crumbling after confronting reality. Last year, California State Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, a Democrat, pulled the plug on single-payer legislation passed by the state Senate after deeming it "woefully incomplete." Even that was an understatement -- the bill was silent on how it would raise the $400 billion needed to fund single-payer each year.

In 2014 in Vermont, then-Gov. Peter Shumlin -- a long-time single-payer advocate -- gave up on a single-payer plan after he learned it would cost $4.3 billion annually. That amount was equivalent to 88 percent of the entire state budget. He reluctantly concluded that the proposed funding mechanism for single-payer -- a 12.5 percent state payroll tax and a sliding-scale individual tax of up to 9.5 percent of income "might hurt our economy."

Even Sen. Bernie Sanders, America's foremost proponent of single-payer, admitted in June that "there will be pain" if the nation adopts the government-run system he favors. The plan he touted on the presidential campaign trail in 2016 would have cost $1.4 trillion per year, according to his own estimates. To pay for it, he called for a new 2.2 percent income tax, a 6.2 tax on employers, and higher taxes on the wealthy.

An independent analysis of Sanders's plan conducted by the left-leaning Urban Institute estimated that it would cost $32 trillion over 10 years.

And those are just the financial costs. Socialized medicine's human costs are even greater. Single-payer systems the world over ration care and force patients to wait for treatment.

The United States can barely afford its existing healthcare obligations. In 2017, the federal government spent more than $700 billion on Medicare -- a 65 percent increase over just 10 years. Annual costs per capita are expected to increase 4.6 percent per year over the next decade. And the latest Medicare Trustees report, released in June, reported that the Part A Trust Fund, which covers payment for hospital care, will be depleted in 2026. That's three years earlier than previous projections. At that point, workers' payroll taxes earmarked for Medicare will no longer cover the program's costs.

In other words, America is struggling to pay for "Medicare for Some" -- much less "Medicare for All." As pro-single-payer candidates like Ocasio-Cortez will soon discover, no amount of enthusiasm for single-payer can overcome basic math.



The Numbers Are In, And It’s Looking Pretty Bad For Senate Dems In November

Democrats are in for an uphill battle in November’s midterm elections as they struggle to overtake the GOP-led Senate, according to an Axios and SurveyMonkey poll of key states released Tuesday.

Although Democrats only need to pick up two seats to gain the majority in the Senate, they are struggling to control 10 states already held by Democratic senators. These states are now predominantly red states with voters who are strong supporters of President Donald Trump. They include Indiana, Missouri, Montana and North Dakota, all of which Trump won in 2016, while his Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton couldn’t even win over 40 percent of voters in any of those states, according to a Politico report.

Chances of flipping most states where Republican senators are up for reelection seems slim, with states like Nebraska, Utah and Wyoming most likely a solid GOP win, according to polling data by RealClearPolitics. Democrats’ only hope will be to replace GOP Sen. Jeff Flake from Arizona as he retires with one of their own, while simultaneously defeating GOP Sen. Dean Heller in Nevada

Midterm prediction polls show that in an effort to add two seats to Democrats’ existing 26, they will likely lose races in Nevada, Florida and Indiana, which will squash any chances of overtaking Republicans in the Senate races, according to the Axios and SurveyMonkey poll. The poll surveyed 12,677 registered voters from June 11 to July 2 with a margin of error of five percent.

The poll suggests that 49 percent of voters would vote for GOP Gov. Rick Scott over Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson in Florida, 52 percent would vote for GOP Rep. Kevin Cramer over Democratic Sen. Heidi Heitkamp in North Dakota, and 49 percent would vote for Republican Mike Braun against Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly in Indiana.



Trump Hits Two More Countries With Visa Sanctions For Refusing To Take Back Deportees

The Trump administration has hit certain government officials from Burma and Laos with visa sanctions as punishment for both countries’ refusal to take back their citizens the U.S. is trying to deport, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced Tuesday.

Going forward, the U.S. embassy in Rangoon, Burma, will halt the issuance of tourist and business non-immigrant visas to senior officials in the ministries of Labor, Immigration, Population and Home Affairs. In Laos, the U.S. mission will no longer grant tourist and business nonimmigrant visas to senior officials from the Laotian Ministry of Public Security.

The restrictions also apply to the officials’ immediate families, DHS said.

The sanctions come after a review by DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, who determined that Burma and Laos have “denied or unreasonably delayed” accepting citizens ordered removed from the U.S. They will remain in place until Nielsen notifies Secretary of State Mike Pompeo that cooperation on deportees has improved, according to DHS.

“The decision to sanction a recalcitrant country is not taken lightly,” the department said in a statement. “DHS makes significant efforts, in collaboration with the State Department, to encourage countries to accept the prompt, lawful return of their nationals who are subject to removal from the United States. Those efforts include diplomatic communications at the highest level of government.”

Tuesday’s announcement is not the first time the Trump administration has resorted to the use of visa sanctions against countries that don’t cooperate on deportations. Washington slapped Eritrea, Sierra Leone, Guinea and Cambodia in 2017 with varying levels of visa restrictions after then-acting DHS Secretary Elaine Duke named all four as recalcitrant countries

Although the immigration code allows U.S. authorities apply visa sanctions on countries that refuse to take back their citizens, the punishment had rarely been used before the Trump administration. Until 2017, Washington had resorted to visa sanctions against non-accepting countries just twice — Guyana in 2001 and then Gambia in 2016.

The Trump administration has put heavy diplomatic pressure on countries that resist accepting deportees and has been able to convince some to become more cooperative. Since January 2017, DHS has removed eight countries — including Iraq and Somalia — from a list of recalcitrant countries maintained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

The 12 nations still on the list as of last July were China, Cuba, Vietnam, Laos, Iran, Cambodia, Burma, Morocco, Hong Kong, South Sudan, Guinea and Eritrea.

A Supreme Court decision, Zadvydas v. Davis, prevents the government from holding aliens with final orders of removal beyond six months if there is no “significant likelihood of removal in the reasonably foreseeable future.” ICE says it has had to release Burmese and Laotian nationals into the U.S. because neither country has an established process for issuing travel documents to their citizens who’ve been ordered removed.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


11 July, 2018  

Illegal Immigrant Kills Two Officers — Fined $280

Yet open-borders advocates pretend that immigration enforcement is the problem.

It sounds surreal: An illegal immigrant with a years-old rap sheet has to pay just a few hundred bucks after a vehicle crash killed two law enforcement officers. Unfortunately, this actually happened in Maryland. The fatal wreck occurred on Dec. 8, 2017, when Guatemalan national Roberto Garza Palacios “fatally struck an FBI agent and a fire investigator on the side of a Maryland highway,” The Washington Post reports. Yet on June 25, Garza Palacios “paid a $280 fine, concluding a case of negligent driving lodged against him.” The illegal immigrant “did not have to appear in court and did not receive jail time.”

According to the Post, “While he drove in a ‘careless and imprudent manner,’ prosecutors found, his actions did not rise to a ‘gross deviation’ from careful driving or a ‘reckless disregard’ for human life — the conditions needed to support more-serious charges.” But that’s hardly all there is to this heart-wrenching story. The post further notes:

On May 3, officers from Immigration and Customs Enforcement took [Roberto Garza Palacios] into custody at his home in Gaithersburg and charged him with overstaying and violating the terms of a work visa that had expired in 2009, according to ICE officials. Three years earlier, ICE learned he had been arrested in Montgomery County and asked jail officials to place a hold on him, but that request was not honored and Garza Palacios was released, according to county and federal officials. … Garza Palacios had previous traffic and criminal convictions. In a 2015 case, he pleaded guilty to driving while impaired. Around that time, he also served about four months in jail after being arrested for smashing windows on about 16 cars and lighting a sofa on fire near a construction site. After the traffic case concluded, [one of the victim’s widows] said that particularly given Garza Palacios’s record, the penalty in the recent case seemed woefully inadequate.

No kidding. Authorities are currently determining whether Garza Palacios should be deported (that’s a no-brainer), but two deaths could have been avoided had Garza Palacios been deported when he was originally flagged and had he not been afforded sanctuary despite his record. Today, the Left wants to abolish ICE. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) even called the agency a “deportation force.” Yet Garza Palacios’ evading deportation resulted in two people being needlessly killed. Whether intentional or not, this is what open-borders advocates condone.



Leftists Ramping Up Administration Confrontations

Two more incidents over the weekend add to the growing list of violent episodes against Republicans.

Who are the real fascists? “If you see anybody from [Trump’s] Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd! And you push back on them! And you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere!” stated Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) last month in her call to harass and bully anyone associated with President Donald Trump and, more broadly, the Republican Party. In the weeks since, it has become increasingly clear that leftists have taken Waters’ directive to heart. This past weekend saw two more episodes to add to the growing list of leftist harassment.

In Richmond, Virginia, former Trump advisor Steve Bannon was confronted in a book store by a woman who called him a “piece of trash.” Upon witnessing the harassing behavior, the store owner told the woman to leave, which she initially refused to do until he called the police. The store owner explained, “Steve Bannon was simply standing, looking at books, minding his own business. I asked [the antagonist] to leave, and she wouldn’t. And I said, ‘I’m going to call the police if you don’t,’ and I went to call the police and she left. And that’s the end of the story.” The owner then noted, “We are a bookshop. Bookshops are all about ideas and tolerating different opinions and not about verbally assaulting somebody, which is what was happening.”

But, as it turns out, the story didn’t end there. Upon learning of the incident, former Hillary Clinton aide Philippe Reines exposed the name and address of the bookstore along with the name of the owner, writing that the woman “took the opportunity to call [Bannon] a ‘piece of trash.’” When Reines was called out for seeking “a public beatdown” of the store, he disingenuously responded, “I’m providing a service to the public by providing the contact information the bookstore posted on their website — presumably with the hope of being contacted. I present facts [without] encouraging any behavior.” But he absurdly added, “I’d point out through [sic] it’s possible this woman stopped a book burning.”

Meanwhile, on Saturday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) was exiting a restaurant in Louisville, Kentucky, when he and a colleague were surrounded by several people and harangued with shouts of “Abolish ICE” and “No justice, no peace.” At one point an individual is heard shouting, “We know where you live, Mitch. We know where you live.” Eventually, as McConnell enters his car and drives off, someone says, “We did good, fellow citizens.”

It should come as little surprise that Democrats have increasingly approved of the tactics of fascism as their party has increasingly embraced the agenda of the extreme Left. Rather than attempting to defend the “merits” of this bankrupt ideology (which is understandable, given the fact that leftist ideology is opposed to the whole concept of merit), they instead have supported the tactics of intimidation via verbal assault and shaming in seeking to pressure Republicans and conservatives to kowtow to their political demands. Are any elected Democrats willing and bold enough to definitively break with their party and call out this dangerous and deeply divisive behavior of the unhinged Left?



McConnell Destroys Democratic Opposition To Potential SCOTUS Nominee

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell spoke on the Senate floor Monday attacking Democratic opposition to President Donald Trump’s future Supreme Court nominee, citing Democrats’ historical panic at conservative SCOTUS nominees.

“Back in 1975, they assailed the nomination of John Paul Stephens. They said he lacked impartiality and opposed women’s rights … So these far left groups have been at the same scare tactics for over 40 years,” McConnell said. “This far left rhetoric comes out every single time. The apocalypse never comes.”

“No matter their qualifications, no matter their record, no matter their reputation, it’s the same hyperbole, the same accusations, the same old story,” McConnell said.

McConnell also cited the nomination of David Souter, who turned out to be a fairly liberal justice under former President George H. W. Bush.

“Guess what left-wing pressure groups said about David Souter right after President Bush selected him? That’s right. The very same things you’re hearing today. The same things you’ve heard from these same corners about every Supreme Court nominee named by a Republican president,” McConnell said in the speech.

McConnell also cited several Democrats’ opposition to the nominee without knowing who he or she will be, in particular California Democratic Sen. Kamala Harris’s statement that Trump’s SCOTUS nominee will signal “the destruction of the Constitution of the United States.”

Harris predicted “the destruction of the constitution” on “Hardball with Chris Matthews” in June shortly after Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his resignation, according to The Daily Caller on June 27.



Big Labor Hit with Another Class Action Suit

Janus decision spurs Washington State suit seeking back wages

The fallout from the Supreme Court's landmark Janus ruling continued as Washington state workers filed suit to recover their lost wages from forced unionism.

Several home health aides are suing Service Employees International Union Local 775 and the state to recover money deducted from Medicaid reimbursements designed to fund the care of disabled or elderly people. The state government automatically sent more than 3 percent of the provider payments to the union, despite the fact that workers never agreed to become members. The practice, according to the suit, violates both the U.S. and state constitutions.

"Plaintiffs and class members are not union members and never consented for the union or the state to withdraw union dues or dues equivalent fees from their wages, yet the state deducted such fees from their pay," the suit says. "Defendants conspired to deprive Plaintiffs and class members of their First Amendment rights by deducting union fees from their wages without their clear, prior, affirmative consent."

For years Washington state forced such providers, many of whom are caring for relatives, to pay a portion of those reimbursements to the union. The practice only stopped when the Supreme Court declared a similar policy in Illinois unconstitutional. That 2014 ruling led to the Supreme Court's June decision declaring mandatory payments to public sector unions, including SEIU, an unconstitutional violation of free speech in Janus.

The caregivers are receiving pro bono representation from the Freedom Foundation, a pro-free market think tank in the state. Foundation labor expert Maxford Nelson said the policy was exploitive and "wrong on every level."

"Any business that tried to charge customers without their permission would have the state attorney general trying to shut them down," he told the Washington Free Beacon. "We believe extracting union dues from caregivers' Medicaid checks without permission is not only unfair, but violates caregivers First Amendment rights."

The home health providers are asking for "punitive damages against defendants … because their conduct, described above, was and is motivated by evil motive or intent, or involves reckless or callous indifference to the federal and state rights of plaintiffs and class members." They also are asking the judge to force the union and state to pay for legal fees. The Washington aides are not the first to demand that unions refund forced unions dues and fees. Former government workers have filed class action suits in seven states, including Washington, to repay past deductions.

Nelson said the Janus decision has settled the question of forced fee payments and "made it clear that unions can't take money out of public employees' pay without their affirmative consent." He said the onus should be on the unions to win the support of public sector workers or personal medical aides and that both groups are motivated by political support, rather than care for the aides.

"We believe the same principle protects these caregivers against being exploited by unions like SEIU 775 and politicians like Gov. Inslee," Nelson said. "SEIU 775 wants to fill its own coffers and Gov. Inslee wants union campaign contributions, so they assume silence means consent and take caregivers' money until and unless the caregiver objects."



Trump Hits Another Home Run With Supreme Court Pick Brett Kavanaugh

President Donald Trump announced on Monday night his nomination of D.C. Circuit Judge Brett Kavanaugh to succeed Justice Anthony Kennedy on the Supreme Court. Kavanaugh, who was included in The Heritage Foundation’s original list of potential Supreme Court nominees, is a very promising choice.

Kavanaugh is a committed textualist. As Kavanaugh succinctly stated in a book review published in the Harvard Law Review, “The text of the law is the law.” He has reiterated this view in many of his opinions.

In Fourstar v. Garden City Group, Inc. (2017), he wrote, “It is not a judge’s job to add to or otherwise re-mold statutory text to try to meet a statute’s perceived policy objectives. Instead, we must apply the statute as written.” And in District of Columbia v. Department of Labor (2016), he write, “As judges, we are not authorized to rewrite statutory text simply because we might think it should be updated.”

Kavanaugh is a critic of Chevron deference, under which courts show considerable deference to executive branch agencies in interpreting arguably ambiguous statutes. In his view, “Chevron itself is an atextual invention by courts. In many ways, Chevron is nothing more than a judicially orchestrated shift of power from Congress to the Executive Branch.”

And in 2017, while delivering the Joseph Story Distinguished Lecture at The Heritage Foundation, Kavanaugh spoke eloquently about the judiciary’s essential role in maintaining the separation of powers and concluded:

Statutory interpretation is inherently complex, people say. It is all politics anyway, some contend. I have heard all the excuses. I have been doing this for 11 years. I am not buying it. In my view, it is a mistake to think that this current mess in statutory interpretation is somehow the natural and unalterable order of things. Put simply, we can do better in the realm of statutory interpretation. And for the sake of the neutral and impartial rule of law, we must do better.

His record as a judge reflects a skepticism toward Chevron deference. Indeed, Kavanaugh has written or joined dozens of opinions finding an agency’s actions unlawful as well as many dissenting opinions (some of which were ultimately vindicated by the Supreme Court) in which the court’s majority upheld agency actions.

For example, he dissented from his court’s ruling that the Environmental Protection Agency could disregard cost-benefit analysis when considering a proposed rule in Coalition for Responsible Regulation v. EPA (2012). The Supreme Court later reversed that decision, citing Kavanaugh’s dissenting opinion.

And in U.S. Telecom Ass’n v. FCC (2017), a case involving net neutrality, Kavanaugh dissented from the court’s refusal to hear the case en banc. He argued that the Federal Communications Commission was not entitled to Chevron deference because Congress had not explicitly delegated authority to the FCC to treat the internet like a public utility subject to regulation.

As for the Second Amendment, Kavanaugh wrote a dissenting opinion in Heller v. District of Columbia (2011)—a follow-on case to the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling acknowledging the Second Amendment’s protection of an individual right to keep and bear arms. Kavanaugh would have held D.C.’s ban on the possession of semi-automatic rifles unconstitutional, stating that “Heller and McDonald leave little doubt that courts are to assess gun bans and regulations based on text, history, and tradition, not by a balancing test such as strict or intermediate scrutiny.”

Anticipating the Supreme Court’s landmark decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Kavanaugh ruled in Emily’s List v. FEC (2009) that the commission’s regulations limiting independent political expenditures by non-profit organizations violated the First Amendment. Kavanaugh also wrote the majority opinion in South Carolina v. Holder (2012), upholding South Carolina’s voter ID law.

Kavanaugh has been criticized by some on the right for not going far enough in opinions he wrote involving religious liberty (Newdow v. Roberts and Priests for Life v. HHS), abortion (Garza v. Hargan), and Obamacare (Seven-Sky v. Holder).

In evaluating each of these decisions, it is worth remembering that Kavanaugh sits on a court in which a majority of the judges were appointed by Democratic presidents and would certainly not be considered conservative jurists.

Moreover, a good conservative judge might well decide to fashion an opinion in a way designed to maximize the likelihood that a closely-divided Supreme Court would ultimately agree to hear the case and adopt his position, a strategy that Kavanaugh has effectively utilized on several occasions over the years. As Kavanaugh stated during his Story Lecture at Heritage, “[W]hen Justice Kennedy says something, I listen.”

In short, Kavanaugh has been playing the long game to advance an understanding of the laws and Constitution that is faithful to the text and original meaning.

Approach to the Law

In a 2017 speech at Notre Dame Law School, Kavanaugh spoke about Scalia’s impact on the law and the late justice’s view that federal judges “should not be making policy-laden judgments.” Kavanaugh remarked, “I believe very deeply in [the] visions of the rule of law as a law of rules, and of the judge as umpire. By that, I mean a neutral, impartial judiciary that decides cases based on settled principles without regard to policy preferences or political allegiances or which party is on which side in a particular case.”

He elaborated on what Scalia stood for as a judge:

[R]ead the words of the statute as written. Read the text of the Constitution as written, mindful of history and tradition. The Constitution is a document of majestic specificity defining governmental structure, individual rights, and the role of a judge. Remember that the structural provisions of the Constitution—the separation of powers and federalism—are not mere matters of etiquette or architecture, but are essential to protecting individual liberty. … Remember that courts have a critical role, when a party has standing, in enforcing those separation of powers and federalism limits.

Though Kavanaugh was speaking about Scalia, his words could very well describe his own approach to the law and his commitment to the Constitution.

Much more HERE 


For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


10 July, 2018  

The Toxic Race-Mongering of the Left

Imagine a world in which leftists, by some magic, were unable to accuse their political opponents of racism. Racism, sexism, all of the various make-believe phobias — these charges were suddenly somehow off-limits during political discussion. Instead, at all the leftist venues — The New York Times, the TV network news departments, CNN and the rest — the commentators had to accept that their political opponents were people of good will with the best interests of the country at heart. They had to ask themselves — and even possibly ask actual conservatives — what it was about border security that seemed important to them, why social spending might be destructive, why Islam might be incompatible with western thought, why teachers' unions were impeding the rise of the poor and so on.

If that magical moment ever occurred, we might start to have an intelligent political debate in this country. But don't hold your breath.

The current status quo serves the short-sighted power aims of the worst of the Democratic party, that is the far left, too well for them to abandon it. Scream racism at every disagreement and you might convince meaning-seeking millennials that leftism provides them a cogent moral framework, you might scare blacks out of noticing that they are thriving under Donald Trump's policies, you might convince women that Trump's boorish words are somehow worse than Bill Clinton's actions.

But the long-term costs of these political gains are great. The constant cries of racism have kept race at the center of the American political discussion long after most Americans would happily let the subject go. The attacks on anyone who demands reform from Islam have allowed radical Islamists to range free in their communities while moderates are unprotected. The anti-male cries of sexism have reduced women to perpetual victims, perpetually dissatisfied with life.

And, perhaps most importantly, leftist race mongering turns leftists into political idiots. It isn't until you engage with your political opponents that you learn the strengths and weaknesses of your arguments and can therefore adjust them or even change your mind entirely. If all you do is scream racism at people, you pump yourself full of self-righteousness and become increasingly radicalized and therefore increasingly at odds with reality and common sense.

A perfect example of the left-wing dynamic occurred on Fox News, of all places, the other day. Conservative political activist David Bossie — a man I know and like — was in a fierce debate with Democrat strategist Joel Payne. As things got heated, David told Payne, "You are out of your cotton-pickin' mind." Payne took immediate exception to the term and left-wing venues immediately declared it a racial slur. As a result, David was temporarily suspended from commentating on Fox and was forced to apologize before he could return.

A short-term victory for leftists, no doubt. It plays into their decades-long project of depicting right-wingers as inherently racist, of making them double-think every word that comes out of their mouths, and of winning arguments, not through reason, but through diversion and personal attack.

But the long-term costs are enormous. "Cotton-pickin'" is a 1950s American euphemism for "damn" that has no racial connotations I'm aware of. It's just something people of the Bossie-Klavan generations say. By using the term to Payne, David demonstrated he wasn't thinking about Payne's race in the least. If he had been, he would have been more careful with his words. Instead, he spoke to Payne as he would speak to anyone. It was man-to-man stuff, one American to another. Payne has now lost the right to be treated like that. He must be — what the left wants him to be — black above everything. Bossie treated him as an equal human, a brother American. Leftism made it so he can't be treated that way. Congratulations, leftism.

On top of this, fake charges of racism give real racism a kind of panache. Since only good non-racist people can be cowed into silence with false charges, nasty real racists, willing to speak their minds, come across as bold and honest instead of like the jerks they are. When you cry Racist Wolf long enough, you leave the real wolf free to roam.

Eventually, one hopes that insightful black Americans will begin to see that while the left's race mongering may offer them the short-term political power of victimhood, the long-term costs in inequality and social exclusion are too high. On that day, the left will have to get by on the strength of their ideas alone. That will not be pretty.



It’s Not Socialism, It’s Racism

The myth of the media’s new Socialist It Girl

After the ’10 census, New York lost two congressional seats. Overpriced, lacking any growth industries except tourism and community organizing, the state just couldn’t keep up with the rest of the country.

New York had been bleeding congressional seats since the rise of the suburbs. After the massacre of ’10, its congressional delegation was the smallest since 1823. And it’ll lose more seats after the next census.

But the ’10 massacre also forced Rep. Joe Crowley out of the 7th Congressional District and into the 14th. The 7th became gerrymandered a district built like a Frankenstein’s monster out of parts of Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens that had nothing geographically in common except Puerto Rican populations who will keep voting for Rep. Nydia Velázquez, a Democrat, until the city sinks beneath the waves.

Crowley, who is paler than birch trees, had no shot at the new 7th. But he settled down comfortably in the 14th, winning 70% of the vote by just showing up, without the fuss of a primary challenge. While representing a Hispanic district in Queens, he was allegedly living comfortably in Arlington, Virginia.

That was never going to last.

New York City’s working class white population is an endangered species. If you’re not on welfare or earning well in the six figures, you can’t afford to live there. Crowley’s district was 46% Hispanic. It had the second highest share of Latino voters in New York. The machine pol was living on borrowed time.

It’s hard to imagine a more vulnerable politician than doughy Joe, the echo of a 19th century political establishment of barstools and crony government jobs, used to winning ¾ of the vote in safe districts and who had forgotten how to compete in an election (if he ever knew how) facing a Hispanic district.

Of course that’s not the story you see in the media.

Instead the media thrills to its own fake news of how Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the "girl from the Bronx", a Socialist candidate and “giant-slayer”, impossibly defeated Rep. Crowley. And that’s accompanied by analysis of how her victory is proof of the inevitable triumph of Socialism. The media has even begun trying to ‘Obamaize’ her with stories about her brand of lipstick selling out.

The fake news narrative has nothing to do with the truth about Cortez and the reality of the 14th.

The simple truth is that the Democratic Socialists of America and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez put in time and money into a district that the Democrats hadn’t bothered to protect because Republicans couldn’t win it. The secret to Cortez’s victory wasn’t socialism. It was her last name.

Nor is Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez a “girl from the Bronx”. She’s the daughter of an architect from a pricey suburb in Westchester County. Her father, a Pratt Institute grad, was a founder of KOR which stood for Kirschenbaum & Ocasio-Roman Architects. The Ocasio (rather than the Kirschenbaum) part of the name meant that it operated as a “certified minority business enterprise” which came with assorted privileges.

MBEs are able to cut in line and get all sorts of lucrative government contracts. All it takes is having a minority grandfather and your company is entitled to drink from a river of government cash flowing only to MBE companies. And if your ancestry is whiter than that of Senator Elizabeth Warren, you can always find a minority partner and then let the good times roll. At the expense of the working tax-paying stiffs.

After her father cashed in on affirmative action while living in Westchester County, his daughter cashed in her minority card in a New York City election even though she has far more in common with the white hipster Bernie Sanders supporters who provided the muscle for her campaign than any of the minorities living in a housing project in Queens or the Bronx. But that’s also why the media loves Cortez.

She’s one of them: a suburban leftist with a bio consisting of studying International Relations at Boston U, working on immigration issues for Ted Kennedy, serving as the National Hispanic Institute's Social Entrepreneur in Residence, producing a web series, shuttling between trendy lefty protests and founding what appears to a defunct social justice publishing house.

This isn’t the biography of an urban minority politician, but an upscale lefty hipster drifting after college from one activist gig to another, developing the contacts that put her in the right place at the right time. These are the bios of ten thousand professional lefties who infest the non-profit sector. They’re all angry, self-righteous and interchangeable. The minorities among them hail from wealthy areas.

And like all upscale lefties, they love putting on as much working class cred as they can get away with.

The media is using Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to push the Democrats even further to the left. But her victory is no argument for socialism. It is evidence that the left can win an election if the turnout is really low and a Hispanic district is being represented by a boring white Democrat who lives in Virginia. Since the 14th is a minority district, Cortez will probably be able to hold on to it until she’s older than Maxine Waters. Or unless the coming redistricting after New York loses more seats changes its racial composition. And Cortez and her Socialism will go down hard in an Asian or African-American district.

The unspeakable truth is that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez didn’t win because of her views but because the Democrats have created a political racial tribalism that is as bad as that of any third world country.

It’s not Socialism that will send Cortez to Congress. It’s racism.

The 14th district has the second highest share of Latino voters in New York. The 13th has the highest. Before Crowley bit the dust, Rep. Rangel, an elder statesman of the Congressional Black Caucus, barely survived a 2012 challenge by Adriano Espaillat, a Dominican former illegal alien, when his Harlem district’s racial demographics shifted. Frantic efforts were made to dig up Rangel’s “Latino roots.” Rangel finally eked out a victory by a little over 1,000 votes. He didn't show up in 2016. And Espaillat beat Rangel's chosen African-American successor but not after some embarrassing race-baiting by both sides.

Nobody in the 13th or 14th needs Socialism. They’re already living it. Their phones, food, education, medical care, transportation and, their jobs (if they have them) all come from the government.

The 14th dumped the old white guy for the same reason that the 13th dumped the old black guy. They were the wrong color. And the 13th, 14th, and the other multicultural voting districts of Dem strongholds can’t be satisfied with getting their free phones from a political representative of another race.

The media has been marketing Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as the new Obama. And that’s what she is. Her lesson isn’t that socialism works. The details of her politics were as incidental to the voters of the 14th as Obama’s policies were to his most dedicated base. It’s that racism works. Just ask a Democrat.



White Millennials Are Leaving the Democratic Party as 'Walk Away' Campaign Picks Up Steam

White millennials are equally divided between supporting Republicans and Democrats in this year's critical midterm elections, as a campaign urging people to "Walk Away" from the Democratic Party has picked up steam online.

Young people do not like President Donald Trump, but whites between the ages of 18 and 34 said they are equally likely to vote for a Republican as for a Democrat in the elections for Congress this November. A full 39 percent said that "if the election for U.S. Congress were held today," they would vote for the Republican in the district where they live. Another 39 percent said they would vote for the Democrat.

This represented a nine-point shift away from Democrats since 2016. That year, only 33 percent of young white voters said they would elect a Republican to Congress, while 47 percent said they would choose a Democrat.

Young white men made the greatest shift toward the GOP. In 2016, nearly half of them (48 percent) said they would vote for a Democrat, while only 36 percent said they would vote Republican. This year, 46 percent said they would choose a Republican, while only 37 percent said they would vote Democrat — a 21 percent shift in favor of the GOP.

The poll surveyed 16,000 registered voters between 18 and 34, with a 1 percent margin of error.

Democrats have been hoping for a "blue wave," resulting from Americans across the country voting against Republicans as Trump's party. Indeed, midterm elections tend to favor the party out of power, and Republicans do hold the House, the Senate, and the presidency.

However, there are signs that Republicans may win the 2018 midterm elections as the anti-establishment underdog. How? By campaigning against the excessive Trump derangement syndrome across the media, Hollywood, and college campuses.

This is the premise of the "Walk Away" campaign. Brandon Straka, a gay man from Nebraska, identified himself as "The Unsilent Majority" and launched a campaign urging people to reject the Left — for the same reasons he became a liberal.

In the "Walk Away" viral video, Straka denounced racism, misogyny, "tyrannical group think," junk science, "hate," and "a system which allows an ambitious, misinformed, and dogmatic mob to suppress free speech, create false narratives, and apathetically steamroll over the truth." He said he became a liberal for these reasons, and he "walked away" for the very same reasons.

"For years now, I have watched as the left has devolved into intolerant, inflexible, illogical, hateful, misguided, ill-informed, un-American, hypocritical, menacing, callous, ignorant, narrow-minded, and at times blatantly fascistic behavior and rhetoric," Straka declared.

#WalkAway Campaign Urges Fed-Up Democrats to Leave the Party
Straka's video has racked up more than 492,000 views on YouTube and nearly 2 million views on Facebook.

Some millennials might be rejecting the Left as it pushes for control over the way people think, but others merely prefer the economic growth associated with the Republican Party.

Terry Hood, a 34-year-old African American who works at a Dollar General store in Baton Rouge, La., told Reuters that while he voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016, he will consider a Republican for Congress this year.

"It sounds strange to me to say this about the Republicans, but they're helping with even the small things," Hood said. "They're taking less taxes out of my paycheck. I notice that."

President Trump powerfully turned the "blue wave" narrative on its head last month, predicting a "red wave." Perhaps he was on to something.



Boycott Fail: Chick-fil-A Rules

For a third year in a row, Chick-fil-A has been crowned the top fast food chain in America.

Endless boycott campaigns led by liberal activists against the company haven’t slowed down Chick-fil-A’s pure dominance.

“Chick-fil-A was named America’s top fast-food restaurant for the third year in a row in the 2018 American Customer Satisfaction Index’s Restaurant Report, which surveyed more than 22,500 American consumers,” as reported by the Ledger-Enquirer.

Chick-fil-A beat Pizza Hut, Arby’s, Taco Bell, Subway, and Starbucks to claim the number one slot.

With a satisfaction score of 87, Chick-fil-A dominated the next 3 closest chains in Panera Bread (82), Papa John’s (82), and Subway (81).

The report also notes, “The chicken specialist dominates the rankings with the highest score across both restaurant categories, and its food quality continues to rate higher than the competition. Chick-fil-A maintains a wide lead over chicken rival KFC, as the Yum! Brands chain slips 1% to 77.”

The Atlanta-based company has held the top spot for three years now, which means their popularity only climbed following the backlash over CEO Dan Cathy expressing support for traditional marriage. The controversy reached such a fever-pitch that even city mayors tried to ban them from doing business.

Just this year, the Left became venomous in their war against the fast-food chain, with at least two major publications begging people to boycott the business: the New Yorker and Huffington Post.

Chick-Fil-A’s support of our military, willingness to say ‘Merry Christmas,’ stringent franchise requirements, incredible food, and friendly service continues to set the bar high for fast food chains.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


9 July, 2018  

Never Trumpers Suffer Yet Another Utter Humiliation

Kurt Schlichter

Last week was especially glorious not just because we rejected the latest GOPe amnesty scheme, not just because we defunded the left's union cash extortion machine with the Janus decision, and not just because Justice Kennedy is leaving to be the swing vote on his retirement community HOA. It was especially glorious because these enormous victories - these latest enormous victories - were the direct result of normal Americans giving the gimps, grifters, and geebos of Never Trump the George Costanza treatment by doing precisely the opposite of our alleged betters' political instincts.

Everything they told us was wrong. If we had done what they demanded, we would not be revelling in the joy of conserva-victory. We would be resigned to yet another defeat. "But Gorsuch" indeed, you never-been-kissed band of losers.

If we had listened to Never Trump, we'd have voted for Felonia Milhous von Pantsuit and we would not only have Merrick Garland (or worse) on the SCOTUS but now she'd be picking another pinko who agrees with the lib bloc that the First Amendment has hitherto unknown asterisks that prevent conservatives from using it, that a bunch of other rights that aren't in the Constitution actually are, and that the Second Amendment stuff about not infringing on our right to keep and bear arms really means libs can totally infringe on our right to keep and bear arms.

Let's leave aside our booming economy and crushing ISIS and pulling out of the climate scam and maybe peace with North Korea. Just these two Supreme Court picks makes Trump the most important and successful conservative president since The Big R. And we wouldn't have any of it if that nattering pack of insufferable sissies had had their way.

But even today, this dwindling band of bow-tied nimrods still whine despite these manifest conservative triumphs. And their numbers grow fewer as the evidence grows in support of an undeniable conclusion: The election of Donald Trump was a conservative triumph of a magnitude we are only beginning to fully appreciate.

A lot of us had our doubts, but Trump assuaged them by doing something we never expected to see a GOP politician actually do - keep his promises. I was hardcore anti-Trump long ago - I was not Never Trump, only Never Hillary. I was loud and proud for Ted Cruz, with zero trust in a New York playboy whose attachment to conservative ideology seemed intermittent at best.

I write about my transformation at length, and with considerably more colorful language, in my upcoming book Militant Normals, which drops in October. But suffice it to say that I, as have a bunch of fellow Trump-doubters, came around because Trump performed. He did what he said he would. Promises made, promises kept. He promised winning, and delivered winning, and damnit, we normal conservatives are here to win.

A principled loser is just another kind of loser - an especially annoying kind because he never seems to shut his Zima-hole about his precious principles.

And the remaining rump of Never Trumpers is here to lose. That's their goal. Team Muh Principles always intended to lose. Oh, they try to play off their objections to the president as purely one of style. It's because Donald Trump is so.so.so.oh well I never. But their displeasure with Trump's aesthetic deficiencies is not the sole, nor even the most significant, reason for their fury at the orange-y interloper. They are really mad because, under Trump, these dorks can't get the White House to return their calls.

Trump threw the Fredocons out of the family business. They are nothing to us. They are not brothers-in-arms and they are not friends. We don't want to know them or what they do. We'd take them out in a figurative row boat onto Lake Tahoe but we don't want to be seen hanging around with them.

We ruined their scam. They miss the cruise ships, filled with marks handing over cash to mingle with second-tier scribes from magazines put out by lesser sons of greater fathers that we stopped reading when they stopped mattering. Never Trump wants to once stand on a sold-out cruise ship's bridge, pale puny arms spread wide, shouting, "I'm a minor duke of the world!"

They've been stripped of their silly status, but that silly status - "Oh, I am an assistant fellow at the Institute to For Conservative Studies and Mailing List Compilation" - was all they had. In the DC milieu they want to return to, they were never kings, or even princes (though they sure dig the hereditary titles vibe), but just minor royalty jealously guarding their little, tiny fiefdoms. Sure, the liberal establishment ran things, but the Professional Cons had their own petty gigs pretending to resist, pretending to care, all the while treading water in a sea of mediocrity and ineffectuality.

That was enough for them though - they got enough money to survive and got occasional talk show invitations, and they were secure in their place. So what if Hillary crushed Jeb! or whoever - who cared? You just ramped up your fake opposition pose and let the subscriptions and donations roll in. But the marks caught on. The Normals went for an outsider who had zero interest in making sure Conservative, Inc., kept humming along.

Never Trumpers blame Trump (and, by extension, uppity normal like us who dared defy them) for taking that all away, for prying them out of their safe, lucrative sinecures feeding the suckers the line that they were there in the swamp fighting for us. We figured out that they had really reached their own secret truce with the establishment. The official conservative opposition pretended to fight and the establishment pretended it was really an opposition.

The punchline pundits like George Will still cling to the hope that someday, somehow the rubes will fall back into line and things are going to be back to business as usual. Will started the week off by announcing, to great fanfare among the liberals who wish his ilk was still the soft, yielding, useful face of conservatism, that all of us should vote for Democrats in November to show Trump who's boss. But this conservative insurgency is all about us showing George and his doofus pals who's boss. It's not them. Not anymore.

I discuss the Never Trumpers extensively in Militant Normals because their combination of condescension, greed, and betrayal was a huge factor in creating the desperation that turned Normal Americans toward the most unlikely conservative hero imaginable. And in my book, I ruthlessly exploit my ability to use the kind of colorful language that fully describes them and their doings.

This week was a watershed for achieving the conservative renaissance the True ConservativesT that populate the dwindling Never Trump movement promised us for decades and never could, and never actually wanted to, deliver. Their response to it, not surprisingly, was more whining about how Trump is icky. How humiliating it must be to wake up every morning as a putative conservative who dreads looking at Twitter for fear of seeing yet another conservative grand slam by the guy who you thought was really dumb and yet who keeps cleaning your clock.

It's still kind of sad to watch the spectacle of these clowns still making fools of themselves. The liberals never respected them, though they'll still let them do panel hits on the occasional MSNBCNN show to help out with the narrative, and we Normals don't care anymore. Never Trumpers are Fredo, except Fredo at least had the dignity to go away.



Trump delivers again. U.S. Manufacturing Jobs Up 362,000

Manufacturing jobs in the United States increased by 36,000 last month, climbing from 12,677,000 in May to 12,713,000 in June, according to data released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

In December 2016, the month before President Donald Trump took office, there were 12,351,000 manufacturing jobs in the United States. Since then, U.S. manufacturing jobs have increased by 362,000.

“Manufacturing added 36,000 jobs in June,” said the BLS summary of the employment situation for the month. “Durable goods manufacturing accounted for nearly all of the increase, including job gains in fabricated metal products (+7,000), computer and electronic products (+5,000), and primary metals (+3,000). Motor vehicles and parts also added jobs over the month (+12,000), after declining by 8,000 in May. Over the past year, manufacturing has added 285,000 jobs”

BLS has tracked the monthly manufacturing employment in the United States since January 1939. During that time, manufacturing employment in the United States peaked at 19,553,000 in June 1979. Since that peak, U.S. manufacturing jobs have declined by 6,840,000—or 35 percent.



Hispanic-Latino Unemployment Rate Hits Lowest Level on Record in June

The national seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate for Hispanics and Latinos in the U.S. labor force fell to the lowest level on record in June of 2018, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data released Friday show.

In June, the unemployment rate for Hispanics and Latinos, aged 16 and up, was 4.6%, down from its May level of 4.9%. Before June’s record, the lowest monthly Hispanic-Latino unemployment rate since BLS began tracking the statistic in 1973 was 4.8%.

While the Hispanic-Latino unemployment rate had been as low as 4.8% in five months, four of those months were during the administration of President Donald Trump; the lone exception being October of 2006:

June 2018: 4.6%
October 2006: 4.8%
June 2017: 4.8%
October 2017: 8%
November 2017: 4.8%
April 2018: 4.8%

During the 17 full months of the Trump administration, beginning in February 2017, Hispanic-Latino unemployment has averaged 5.0%.

In contrast, the national Hispanic-Latino unemployment rate averaged 9.4% during President Barack Obama’s eight years (96 months) in office, impacted by the 2008 recession, which officially ended in June of 2009, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research.



Obama Voter Turned Gun-Lover, Black Woman Reveals What Really Drove Her To Vote Trump

The mainstream media and the Democratic Party have gleefully counted on support from the black community for years.

Their messaging has been clear: At best, Republicans don’t care about black people, and at worst, are made up largely of racists. Unless you want to betray your race, you must vote Democrat.

So, you can imagine Democrats’ dismay at the growing movement of black Americans who are — as some have put it — leaving the Democratic plantation after waking up to the fact that the Democratic Party is bad news for African-Americans.

That brings us to Antonia Okafor. She’s a young African-American woman who voted for Barack Obama in both 2008 and 2012.

Fast forward to 2018: She’s now a gun-toting, Donald Trump-supporting conservative.

In a video for The Daily Signal, Okafor gave some insight into her journey from the left to the right. “I’m Antonia Okafor and I am a former two-time Obama voter and Democrat,” she said. “How does that happen? Basically common sense.”

“Realizing that the values that I grew up with, that my family instilled in me — working hard, personal responsibility, education being one of the greatest equalizers and then a gun also being one of the greatest equalizers as well,” Okafor continued. “Realizing that those things are conservative and not realizing I really was identifying as a Democrat just because I felt, as a woman, or as a black person, that I had to be.”

Okafor then explained some realizations that changed the game for her.

“That ah-ha moment for me was not too long ago. After the Obama travesty that were the 8 years, 2008 to 2016, I realized that the economy, for one, still sucks. Not like what NPR told me for all this time that we’re in a good state when it comes to the economy. And then also that for the first time in history my generation was going to do worse than my parents’ generation, the generation that came to America to make sure that their kids had a different, better life.”

“That wasn’t going to happen because of the policies that came along with this charismatic man that we so naively put into office. That I so naively put into office,” she continued.

After 8 years of Obama, Okafor was ready for a different direction. “In 2016, I voted for Trump because he’s a Republican and he, I believe, is always going to be first and foremost someone who advocates for the Second Amendment and also for our life,” she said.

“That’s what people should be looking at. They shouldn’t just be looking at this charismatic face. They should be looking at the fact that it’s not the person in office who’s going to really directly do something to change your individual life. It’s the policies that they put forth that are really going to affect you.”

She’s absolutely right. Democrat politicians like Barack Obama are able to put on a good face for the black community, but at the end of the day, his policies did nothing to help them.



Pence Defends Immigration Agency, Rips Democrats

Vice President Mike Pence on Friday accused Democrats of making opposition to the federal immigration agency central to their party, calling for an end to “spurious attacks” on U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

In an address at ICE headquarters infused with electoral politics, Pence noted that some prominent Democrats had called for the abolition of the agency charged with detaining and deporting migrants entering the country illegally. He said President Donald Trump would fully support immigration enforcement agents and warned that the abolition of ICE would lead to more illegal immigration, human trafficking, violent crime and the proliferation of drugs and “vicious gangs.”

“It isn’t just the expression of the radical left that has been speaking out against ICE. The truth is that opposition of ICE has moved to the center of the Democratic Party itself,” Pence said in a speech to ICE employees. “Just when you thought the Democrats couldn’t move farther to the left, leading members of the Democratic Party, including candidates for higher office, are actually openly advocating the abolition of ICE.”

“The American people have the right to their opinions, but these spurious attacks on ICE by our political leaders must stop,” Pence said.

The dispute over the federal agency has emerged as a political fault line after the Trump administration began separating migrant children from their parents after they crossed the U.S.-Mexico border, leading to nationwide protests last weekend. Trump has made border security a focus of his message as he aims to prevent a Democratic takeover of Congress in the November midterm elections.

Pence made no mention of the Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” policy or the caring for unaccompanied children, who are overseen by the Department of Health and Human Services. As the vice president was greeting ICE employees after the speech, he did not respond to a shouted question from a reporter asking if separating children “was a Christian thing to do.”

ICE has come under fire from Democratic Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, all of whom were named by Pence as seeking the abolition of the agency. The three Democrats are among a large field of potential 2020 challengers to Trump.

While some Democrats in the House and Senate have raised the prospect of eliminating ICE, no top Democrats in the House or Senate have called for such a move.

Gillibrand has said ICE is not “working as intended” and pushed for separating the criminal justice aspect of the agency from immigration issues. Responding to Pence’s speech, she tweeted that immigration “is a strength of America. Our country needs a new agency that works, and it needs bipartisan immigration reform.”

Warren has called Trump’s immigration policies “immoral” and said the U.S. needs to rebuild its immigration system “from top to bottom, starting by replacing ICE with something that reflects our values,” while de Blasio has said ICE’s time “has come and gone.”

In his remarks, Pence also referred to a “leading candidate” for New York governor who had “appallingly called this agency a ‘terrorist organization.'”

Cynthia Nixon, an actress and liberal activist challenging New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo in the state’s Democratic primary, tweeted that she could “think of no better description than to call ICE a terrorist organization, and I will wear any criticism from @mike_pence as a badge of honor.”



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


8 July, 2018  

The Never-Trumpers Are Never Coming Back

Pat Buchanan concludes below that it was overseas meddling which was the big mistake of the pre-Trump GOP. I disagree.  I think Americans give foreign policy low priority whichever way it goes.

It is what is happening at home that matters. And there are few things more obvious in most of America than the presence of Hispanic illegals.  Americans don't like that transformstion of their society by people who have much lower standards all-round, with immigrant criminality a major concern.  It is the failure of the GOP to take a strong stand on immigration that doomed them and paved the way for Trump  -- "the wall".

And the GOP was also bullied by Leftists into accepting that any expression of national pride among Americans was "racist". But the average American is proud of his great country so again that was an opening for Trump -- MAGA.

So as Buchanan says the old GOP had its priorities wrong and it won't come back

With never-Trump conservatives bailing on the GOP and crying out for the Party of Pelosi to save us, some painful truths need to be restated.

The Republican Party of Bush I and II, of Bob Dole and John McCain, is history. It's not coming back. Unlike the Bourbons after the Revolution and the Terror, after Napoleon and the Empire, no restoration is in the cards.

It is over. The GOP's policies of recent decades — the New World Order of George H.W. Bush, the crusades for democracy of Bush II — failed, and are seen as having failed. With Trump's capture of the party they were repudiated.

There will be no turning back.

What were the historic blunders?

It was not supporting tax cuts, deregulation, conservative judges and justices, or funding a defense second to none. Donald Trump has delivered on these as well as any president since Reagan.

The failures that killed the Bush party, and that represented departures from Reaganite traditionalism and conservatism, are:

First, the hubristic drive, despite the warnings of statesmen like George Kennan, to exploit our Cold War victory and pursue a policy of permanent containment of a Russia that had lost a third of its territory and half its people.

We moved NATO into Eastern Europe and the Baltic, onto her doorstep. We abrogated the ABM treaty Nixon had negotiated and moved defensive missiles into Poland. John McCain pushed to bring Ukraine and Georgia into NATO, and even to send U.S. forces to face off against Russian troops.

Thus we got a second Cold War that need never have begun and that our allies seem content to let us fight alone.

Europe today is not afraid of Vladimir Putin reaching the Rhine. Europe is afraid of Africa and the Middle East reaching the Danube. Let the Americans, who relish playing empire, pay for NATO.

Second, in a reflexive response to 9/11, we invaded Afghanistan and Iraq, dumped over the regime in Libya, armed rebels to overthrow Bashar Assad in Syria, and backed Saudi intervention in a Yemeni civil war, creating a humanitarian crisis in that poorest of Arab countries that is exceeded in horrors only by the Syrian civil war.

Since Y2K, hundreds of thousands in the Middle East have perished, the ancient Christian community has all but ceased to exist, and the refugees now number in the millions. What are the gains for democracy from these wars, all backed enthusiastically by the Republican establishment?

Why are the people responsible for these wars still being listened to, rather than confessing their sins at second-thoughts conferences?

The GOP elite also played a crucial role in throwing open U.S. markets to China and ceding transnational corporations full freedom to move factories and jobs there and ship their Chinese-made goods back here, free of charge.

Result: In three decades, the U.S. has run up $12 trillion in merchandise trade deficits — $4 trillion with China — and Beijing's revenue from the USA has more than covered China's defense budget for most of those years.

Beijing swept past Italy, France, Britain, Germany and Japan to become the premier manufacturing power on earth and a geo-strategic rival. Now, from East Africa to Sri Lanka in the Indian Ocean, and from the South and East China Sea to Taiwan, Beijing's expansionist ambitions have become clear.

And where are the Republicans responsible for building up this potentially malevolent power that thieves our technology? Talking of building a Reagan-like Navy to contain the mammoth they nourished.

Since the Cold War, America's elites have been exhibiting symptoms of that congenital blindness associated since Rome with declining and falling empires.

While GOP grass roots have begged for measures to control our bleeding southern border, they were regularly denounced as nativists by party elites, many of whom are now backing Trump's wall.

For decades, America's elites failed to see that the transnational moment of the post-Cold War era was passing and an era of rising nationalism and tribalism was at hand.

"We live in a time," said U2's Bono this week, "when institutions as vital to human progress as the United Nations are under attack."

The institutions Bono referenced — the U.N., EU, NATO — all trace their roots to the 1940s and 1950s, a time that bears little resemblance to the era we have entered, an era marked by a spreading and desperate desire of peoples everywhere to preserve who and what they are.

No, Trump didn't start the fire.

The world was ablaze with tribalism and was raising up authoritarians to realize nationalist ends — Xi Jinping, Putin, Narendra Modi in India, Erdogan in Turkey, Gen. el-Sissi in Egypt — before he came down that escalator.

And so the elites who were in charge when the fire broke out, and who failed to respond and refused even to recognize it, and who now denounce Trump for how he is coping with it, are unlikely to be called upon again to lead this republic.



Nerve agents not found in samples from Syria's Douma – interim OPCW report

No traces of any nerve agents have been found at the site of a suspected chemical attack in the Syrian city of Douma, an interim report issued by the OPCW says. However, traces of chlorine were found at the site.

“Various chlorinated organic chemicals were found in samples” from two locations in the Damascus suburb of Douma, which were examined by specialists from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), an interim OPCW document said. The chemicals were found in two samples taken from canisters found in Douma, the report said. The report confirmed the absence of any traces of nerve agents, such as sarin, at the site.

The OPCW sent a fact-finding mission to Douma in April, around a week after the alleged incident. During the same month, Russia said that chlorine containers from Germany, which apparently belonged to militants, were found in the liberated parts of Douma.

Later, the Russian military found an entire laboratory operated by militants in central Douma, which was capable of producing chemical weapons. The lab had some sophisticated equipment, including an industrial chemical reactor, which was apparently used by the militants to create toxic agents. The footage, taken by Russian journalists inside the facility, also showed vast stockpiles of various chemicals, some of which were produced in Germany, as well as empty mortar shells that can be filled with poisonous substances.

The purported chemical incident in Douma allegedly took place on April 7. A week later, Washington and its allies launched a massive retaliatory missile strike against Syria, without waiting for the OPCW to start its investigation of the incident.

The OPCW report comes about a week after the OPCW was granted authority not only to investigate whether any alleged chemical attack took place, but also to assign blame for them. Moscow then warned that the move that actually drove a wedge between some key OPCW members  could lead to a situation, which the chemical watchdog would be used as a political tool.



Trump administration expands government's deportation powers

The Trump administration has expanded the government’s deportation powers, issuing guidelines urging officers at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services — the agency that oversees legal immigration and naturalization — to begin the removal process for people who use fraudulent documents or who illegally took government benefits.

USCIS officers have always had powers, but in the past had usually referred cases to other parts of Homeland Security for decisions on deportation.

But new guidance memos reviewed by The Washington Times show USCIS is now pushing to advance its own role in policing illegal immigration.

“For too long, USCIS officers uncovering instances of fraudulent or criminal activity have been limited in their ability to help ensure U.S. immigration laws are faithfully executed,” L. Francis Cissna, the agency’s director, said in announcing the changes publicly. “This updated policy equips USCIS officers with clear guidance they need and deserve to support the enforcement priorities established by the president, keep our communities safe, and protect the integrity of our immigration system from those seeking to exploit it.”

The memos tell agency employees to be on the looking for people who apply for naturalization or another legal immigration benefit but who have criminal records, used fraudulent documents, lied about their applications or had abused public benefit programs.



Teen Wearing A MAGA Hat Gets Attacked In Restaurant By Unhinged Leftist

This is what the Democrats have enabled. In 2016, there was no shortage of Democratic intimidation tactics against Trump supporters. In 2017, nothing changed. Here we are in 2018 and the war on Trump supporters continues.

A Texas teenager who supports President Trump says he was assaulted by a drink-throwing stranger at a Whataburger restaurant — all because he was wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat.

The incident, which was captured on video and has since gone viral, reportedly happened Tuesday at one of the burger chain’s restaurants in San Antonio.

“You ain’t supporting s— n—-!” the man is heard saying on camera after tossing a large drink in the direction of the person filming the video.

The individual, who has not been identified, then walks away while carrying the red hat. The man is heard muttering “b—- a– motherf——” as one of the other teens sitting at the table appears stunned.

The 16 year-old, Hunter Richard, had his hat ripped off and hair yanked when the unhinged man decided to act like an animal.

Hunter told station WOAI, “I support my President and, if you don’t, let’s have a conversation about it instead of ripping my hat off. I just think a conversation about politics is more productive for the entire whole rather than taking my hat and yelling subjective words to me.”

This is the type of “tolerance” the Democrats have enabled. The left sees no foul in Trump supporters being harassed in public.

Why is it always President Trump supporters who are the ones seen on video getting harassed, assaulted, and mocked by leftists?

Because the political left has ZERO tolerance. They’re animals who allow their media masters to control them and their emotions.

Social media outrage sent the video viral. The man was then fired by his employer, a local bar called Rumble bar.

The bar posted on Facebook: “It came to our attention earlier this evening that a part-time employee was captured on cell phone video assaulting another person at a local eatery. The assault took place, presumably, because this employee did not agree with the other individual’s political stance.”

The post added, “We have since terminated this employee, as his actions go against everything that this establishment stands for. THIS BAR IS A SAFE SPACE FOR EVERYONE! No matter your race, creed, ethnicity, sexual identity, and political stance, you are welcomed here!”

Nothing is a surprise at this point with the anti-Trump crowd.

UPDATE:  The Hispanic attacker, Kino Jimenez, was arrested without incident at his Universal City home, San Antonio Police said Thursday night. He is charged with felony theft. Mug shot of the thug below:



Angry Leftist Stalks Woman Who Posed With Rifle For Grad Photo

Kaitlin Bennett, the recent Kent State University grad who posed with her AR-10 rifle in a now-viral photo, was stalked by an angry leftist while she dared eat out in public in Ohio last week:

 This weekend, a leftist took photos of me at a restaurant, tweeted them out saying she'd punch me in the head if someone sent her $50, told her friends I should die, & told the manager to kill himself. This is EXACTLY why I carry

No wonder she carries a gun. The stalker, naturally, posted the photos to Twitter:  Is this the gun slinging slasher from KSU someone help

But she did delete the one where she solicited $50 to punch Kaitlin in the head. Note the bottom message where the stalker says Kaitlin “should not go out in public anymore” if she doesn’t want to be bothered while eating:

Kaitlin: No matter how much the left libels, harasses, and threatens me for supporting the 2nd amendment, I promise that you will not break me or get me to shut up. You're messing with the wrong girl if you thought you could.



Big swing towards Trump among young whites

Democrat advantage wiped out

Young white Americans are fleeing the Democrat Party en masse following the election of President Donald Trump in 2016, a new poll reveals.

The latest Reuters/Ipsos Poll surveyed more than 16,000 registered voters between the ages 18 to 34 over the course of the last three months of 2018. This same poll was conducted in 2016 around the same time period.

Young white Americans, in 2016, favored Democrats over Republicans in 2016 by a 47 to 33 percent margin. Since Trump’s election — and his booming economy which has secured high-paying jobs and record job opportunities — young white Americans’ favoritism for Democrats has disappeared.

Today, 39 percent of young white Americans say they favor Republicans, while another 39 percent of young white Americans say they favor Democrats.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


6 July, 2018  

Was it all due to Disraeli?

It was mostly in the 18th century that Britain invented the industrial society but in the course of the 19th century most of Europe had caught up and reached a degree of industrialization that was comparable with Britain. Railways were even snaking out across the vast plains of Russia.

And the social problems that industrialization brought were similar too. Economies that had mostly been populated by peasant farmers had rapidly transformed into economies inhabited by factory workers. And compared to their hardscrabble and often hungry life back on the farm, the industrial worker had a greatly improved life. He rarely went hungry and he could even keep a dog. Whippets were very popular.

No matter how good the worker had it, however, he could see that the bosses had it a lot better. And that generated anger. And anger generated unrest, including violent unrest.

So where was society going, many people asked? They were in a totally new situation so the past was no guide. The one thing that was clear however was that the old stability was gone and real violence threatened. The unrest had to be suppressed in some way if an orderly society was to continue.

But that was easier said than done. There was a lot of energy behind the unrest and a new middle class had emerged which produced a new breed of intellectuals. And Karl Marx was only one of those intellectuals. There was an intellectual ferment all over Europe. Even the Pope got involved with his encyclical "De rerum novarum".

And there was certainly all sorts of agitation in Germany. Bismarck, however, kept the peace with his tough stance and ever changing alliances and policies that kept everyone off balance. But there was nobody similar in France so all sorts of revolutionary movements rose and fell.

So if you looked just at Europe in the late 19th century, you saw what looked like an ever bubbling cauldron of unrest that had to be contained in some way lest it degenerate into total anarchy. It was not a pretty sight and it bode ill for the future. Would peace and quiet ever resume? If it were to resume, how could it be done? It looked very much like Bismarck's iron fist was the only viable model. Europe was in danger of reverting to an oriental despotism where a King of some sort kept order through widespread brutality. The energy behind the unrest was great so even greater energies had to be deployed to suppress it.

But what about Britain? The British empire was at its height in the late 19th century. For much of that time the Prime Minister was Benjamin Disraeli, a Jew by ancestry but a nominal convert to the Church of England. Nobody asked him if he believed in the CofE's "39 articles of religion" for the excellent reason that many of the clergy did not believe in them either.

Disraeli showed that democracy was viable in the industrial era. The survival of democracy was not a foregone conclusion. The world has always been ruled by kings before great flowering of democracy in ancient Greece and Rome. But vigorous and transformative though those flowerings were, they eventually succumbed to the Macdeonian monarchy and Caesar respectively. They resumed the normal human form of government: Monarchy. Would the flickering light of democracy in 19th century Europe go the same way?

With Solomonic wisdom, Disraeli saw another way. He was greatly assisted by the fact that democratic trditions were particularly strong in Northern Europe, of which Britain was a part. Disraeli built on that. The fundamental feature of democracy is consultation -- consultation with many if not all of the people governed. In Britain, that process had become pretty corrupt. Those consulted were only a small part of the population. Disraeli decided to widen that. In so doing he worried a lot of people. If you gave the vote to ordinary working people what would they do? Would they seize all the wealth for themselves?

Disraeli solved that problem by making friends with the workers. He praised Britain's great history of liberty and civility and implied that the workers were part of that. And his giving them the vote unasked was certainly a persuasive proof of his high regard for the workers. It would not be stretching it much to say that Disraeli asked all Britons to help him make Britain great again. And it worked. Disraeli made the Conservative party the party that stood for the welfare of the whole nation.

So there was unrest in Britain but it was minimal. Most workers felt proud to be part of Britain and supported the orderly functioning of British society. And to this day, Communist movements have never at anytime gained significant traction in British society. Jeremy Corbyn is doing his best but there just are not the votes in Britain for anything really destructive or extreme.

But amid all this, Britain was arguably the most powerful nation in the world They even marchied into Washington and burnt the White House down in 1848. And the British navy ruled the waves. So the picture of dynamism and power that radiated from democratic Britain was a powerful argument for all things British, including its method of government. Disraeli made democracy the ideal -- though it was often an ideal that was respected rather than implemented. So even ghastly tyrannies such as North Korea feel obliged to call themselves democratic in order to claim some shred of legitimacy.

Because we don't have access to alternative history it is difficult to know how the world would have gone without Disraeli but that he saved democracy for the world seems probable to me.


Is Abolishing ICE the New Liberal Litmus Test?

By Patrick J. Buchanan  

"No Borders! No Nations! No Deportations!" "Abolish ICE!"

Before last week, these were the mindless slogans of an infantile Left, seen on signs at rallies to abolish ICE, the agency that arrests and deports criminal aliens who have no right to be in our country.

By last week, however, "Abolish ICE!" was no longer the exclusive slogan of the unhinged Left. National Democrats were signing on.

Before his defeat in New York's 14th Congressional District, Joe Crowley, fourth-ranked Democrat in the House, called ICE a "fascist" organization.

After Crowley's rout by a 28-year-old socialist who called for killing the agency, Democratic Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York declared ICE to be "a cruel deportation force (that) we need to abolish."

Cynthia Nixon, a candidate for governor of New York, described ICE as a "terrorist organization.terrorizing people who are coming to this country.. We need to abolish ICE."

A star of "Sex and the City" castigated the men and women of ICE as terrorists at St. Paul and St. Andrew United Methodist Church in Manhattan. One wonders what the pastor thought of this Christian message.

Friday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio joined the clamor: "We should abolish ICE." Over the weekend, Senator Elizabeth Warren signed on: "President Trump seems to think that the only way to have immigration rule is to rip parents from their family (and) treat rape victims and refugees like terrorists and to put children in cages."

What ICE does is "ugly" and "wrong," said Warren.

"We need to rebuild our immigration system from top to bottom starting by replacing ICE with something that reflects our morality."

Wisconsin Democratic Congressman Mark Pocan plans to introduce legislation to do exactly that-abolish ICE.

President Donald Trump describes this latest liberal campaign as social and political insanity: "You get rid of ICE, you're going to have a country that you're going to be afraid to walk out of your house."

What is going on here?

Democrats, having just gone through the worst week in memory for progressives, are in imminent danger of losing it altogether.

Last week, the Supreme Court ruled that not only is the Trump travel ban constitutional, government unions have no right to extract "agency fees" from workers who do not wish to support the union.

Such fees violate the First Amendment rights of government workers not to promote policies or ideas in which they disbelieve.

Then came word that Justice Anthony Kennedy, the "swing vote" on the Supreme Court who was crucial to decisions that established abortion, homosexuality and same-sex marriage as constitutional rights, will be stepping down.

And Trump informed the press that he would announce Kennedy's successor on July 9, to be drawn from a list of 20 jurists and legal scholars, all of whom have been vetted by the Federalist Society.

Panic ensued.

"I'm scared. You're scared. We're all scared," says Warren in a video her campaign has released.

On Bill Maher's show, leftist film director Michael Moore called for a million citizens to surround the Capitol to prevent a vote on Kennedy's successor. How Moore's million-man march proposes to get into Mitch McConnell's Senate chamber was left unexplained.

At a fundraiser in Berkeley, California, Barack Obama tried to calm his terrified minions: "All these people that are out here kvetching and wringing their hands and stressed and anxious and constantly watching cable TV and howling at the moon, `What are we going to do?' Their hair is falling out."

But liberal elites making fools of themselves is a less serious matter than the savage slanders Democrats are hurling at the 20,000 men and women of ICE who are daily protecting us and our country.

ICE, after all, was established to prevent another 9/11, when real terrorists, some of whom had overstayed their visas, massacred 3,000 innocent people, most of them Americans.

This vilification of ICE, writes Deputy Director Thomas D. Homan, represents both an injustice and an act of ingratitude:

"Since September 2016, ICE has arrested nearly 5,000 criminal aliens in New York-individuals with a criminal conviction in addition to their violation of immigration laws. Many of these arrests were conducted at large in the community which ICE is increasingly forced to do due to sanctuary policies in the state that prevent us from taking custody of criminal aliens in the secure confines of a jail.

"Governor [Andrew Cuomo] supports these policies at the expense of the safety of the very same communities he took an oath to protect."

Whatever one may think of Trump's policy of "zero tolerance" of immigrants who break into our country, for elites to smear the 20,000 men and women who risk their lives to keep us safe as "terrorists" and "fascists" is an especially egregious form of liberal ingratitude.

What is it in the DNA of the Left that it is always ready to enlist in any new war on cops?

The issue of 2018: should we, or should we not, abolish ICE and embrace the progressive alternative of open borders?



The Democratic Party Has a Death Wish

By Roger L Simon

Last week I wrote that the Democrats were having a nervous breakdown. I was wrong.  It's worse.  They actually have a death wish or what Freud called a "death drive" (Todestrieb). They literally want to extinguish themselves and/or their party, or many of them do. At least they're acting that way.

That was the first thing that crossed my mind watching the explosion of demonstrations by liberals and progressives (I'll spare you the scare quotes) across the country evidently mortified that families were being separated at the border -- something that had been happening for decades without their protesting or, in ninety-nine percent of the cases, their even knowing about it. Now it was the greatest cause c‚lŠbre since, well, whatever was the greatest cause c‚lŠbre three days before.

The polls show the vast majority of Americans think they're cracked and want, as do citizens of almost all countries, secure borders and legal immigration.

So why are they doing this?  Do they secretly want open borders?  Are they actually wannabe socialist revolutionaries out to change American society at its core?  Maybe some are, but if you truly wanted those things, you would behave differently and not so counter to your own interests, alienating with your behavior the very people you claim you want to convince.

As I mentioned, I think the reality is worse -- and infinitely sadder.  You don't have to be a Freudian (and I'm not) to see the Austrian doctor had a point about our unconscious desires. He was far from the first. Ages before, the ancient Greeks personified this death wish in Thanatos, a minor god in their pantheon but not so minor in our lives.

All of us have moments of self-sabotage, but what we are witnessing with the Democratic Party now is a massive expression of this, approaching self-destruction.  Trump hatred has released something far deeper than anger at one person. The rage is projected outward at a supposedly unjust country, but also equally at themselves, mocking or inverting everything they previously stood for.  The party, as Eddie Scarry writes in the Washington Examiner, is in deep crisis.  Who knows what will come out the other end or if it will?

At this point, they don't know what they want, only what they want to destroy.  This is a symptom of depression, as explained by William Berry in a Psychology Today article entitled "How Recognizing Your Death Drive May Save You."

    Freud believed that most people channel their death instinct outward. Some people, however, direct it at themselves. Depression has often been described as " anger turned inward." Many with suicidal ideation make disparaging and aggressive self-statements. This also relates to Freud's theory; some people are driven to destroy themselves.

    In her excellent post, "The Inner Voice That Drives Suicide," Lisa Firestone, Ph.D discusses how a critical inner voice convinces people "it is better to end their lives than to find an alternative solution to their suffering." This inner voice may originate in the death drive.

Can this also be true of political parties?  Well, they're also composed of people, n'est-ce pas?  If I had advice to give the Democrats at this point, it might be the subtitle of Berry's article: "Your Death Drive Is Out to Destroy you.  Tame it."

But on second thought, why bother?  Was it Sun Tzu, Machiavelli or Napoleon who said "Never interfere with an enemy when he is in the process of destroying himself"?



Terror Plot 104 Targets the Fourth of July

On July 1, the FBI arrested Demetrius Pitts for planning a terrorist attack in Cleveland on the Fourth of July. This plot was the 104th Islamist terror plot or attack against the U.S. homeland since 9/11 and the 91st plot or attack that was homegrown.

The FBI first became aware of Pitts at the end of 2015 when he sent pro-terrorism Facebook messages to a political commentary show.

Over the course of the next few years, he continued to post on social media, increasingly threatening violence against the U.S. The FBI began a deeper investigation that revealed his desire to conduct an attack in the U.S. or travel abroad to join a terrorist organization.

In June 2018, an undercover FBI agent posing as an al-Qaeda “brother” met with Pitts. Pitts expressed a desire to attack government and military targets, with a variety of violent methods.

When told by the undercover agent that there were other “brothers” willing to carry out an attack, Pitts began planning an attack. He planned an attack on July Fourth.

The attack would involve weapons ranging from remote control cars with bombs that they would give to the children of military members, to a van filled with explosives. He decided the attack should be near the fireworks at Voinovich Park and that the nearby U.S. Coast Guard station would be a great target. Pitts thought of himself as the mastermind, while others would actually carry out the attack.

Pitts used his phone to do surveillance of various sites around Cleveland, including the Coast Guard station. He also made videos pledging himself to do violence against the U.S. and calling on others to rise up as well. He helped with logistics in finding a vehicle for the car bomb against the Coast Guard station and believed the bombing was ready to go for July Fourth.

Pitts also began to think beyond this attack and that he could plan or commit additional attacks. He said that he had nothing to live for and that he knew Philadelphia well and would plan or commit an attack there on Labor Day. He was interested in federal buildings and landmarks in the city. He was arrested on July 1.

Targeting the military and mass gatherings like the Independence Day fireworks are the two most common targets of Islamist terrorists.

Also common is that the FBI foiled this plot with a successful sting operation. Stings and the use of undercover officers or informants are some of the FBI’s most successful tactics to deeply investigate terrorists while keeping the public from any imminent harm.

This case also shows the disturbing reality that the FBI must keep an eye on certain radical individuals for years before they move to action.

Such long-term investigations consume limited resources and cannot always be sustained. Indeed, this has sometimes led to terrorists slipping through the cracks, as was the case with Omar Mateen, the shooter at the Pulse nightclub in 2016.

Mateen had been investigated by the FBI for about a year beginning in 2013 but not enough evidence was found to justify continuing the investigation.

Thankfully, this was not the case this time. The FBI kept track of Pitts and stopped him before he could engage in violence.

This Fourth of July, let’s thank the hardworking men and women of the U.S. law enforcement and intelligence communities for all they do to keep us safe at home.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


5 July, 2018  

Joy Reid Helps Ruin Innocent Woman’s Life With Fake News About ‘Dirty Mexican’

Members of the hypocritical left — who claim to be tolerant of others but increasingly display great intolerance toward those on the right — have upped the ante in the ideological war and begun to wage a scorched earth campaign against those with whom they disagree, purposefully seeking to ruin the lives and careers of conservative individuals.

One way this is accomplished is via “doxxing” — sharing personal and private information about an individual online with the express purpose of inciting an angry mob to go after them while associates and friends shun them. And that was just done to a woman in Southern California named Rosalyn La Liberte.

The Gateway Pundit reported how La Liberte’s life and personal business were in danger of being completely ruined after she was falsely smeared on social media as having called a young teenager a “dirty Mexican” and declared he’d be “the first deported” if she had her way at a Simi Valley City Council meeting about the issue of California’s sanctuary city policies.

A 17-year-old anti-gun (really anti-conservative) activist from California named Alan Vargas was the first to start the process when he posted a picture that appeared to show the woman yelling at the boy — 14-year-old Joseph Luevanos, who was speaking in defense of sanctuary policies — and falsely attributed the remarks to her while demanding she be “put on blast” and hounded by the liberal public.

" You are going to be the first deported" " dirty Mexican"  Were some of the things they yelled at this 14 year old boy. He was defending immigrants at a rally and was shouted down.  Spread this far and wide this woman needs to be put on blast.

That post received tens of thousands of likes and retweets, including a retweet by MSNBC host Joy Reid, and it didn’t take long at all after that before the liberal Twitter mob descended upon La Liberte and began to publicly post personal information about her and the construction company she runs alongside calls to boycott and ruin her.

Except, La Liberte never said the things she was alleged to have said to the boy, and both she and Luevanos have stated for the record that their conversation at the council meeting was “civil.”

According to the Gateway Pundit, the picture itself had been grabbed and shared by Vargas, without attribution, from an article published by the Ventura County Star that covered the June 25 council meeting and described the encounter between La Liberte and Luevanos as a “spirited discussion.”

Furthermore, KTTV in Los Angeles took the time to speak with both participants in that “spirited discussion” once the social media frenzy had commenced, and concluded via comments from both that the discussion had been civil and La Liberte hadn’t said the things that had been attributed to her.

“I’m not an evil person. I’m a mother of five … a grandma of four,” La Liberte told the station. “I never said anything disparaging. I never did.”

Indeed, Luevanos — an American citizen born and raised in Southern California — recalled hearing some ugly things from some of those who attended the council meeting, including remarks about being deported, but not from La Liberte during their conversation.

“I felt like she was still trying to keep it civil which I appreciate,” he told KTTV.

“I heard some people were boycotting this woman’s business. I don’t really want that … because she was being civil,” he added. “I don’t really want this upon her. She doesn’t deserve it because she was giving her opinion at a place where everyone should be able to say their piece.”

As for La Liberte, she and her husband reported that they had been deluged with harassing and threatening phone calls and had already lost one client from their business because of the smear.

“I look like a monster. If I saw that I would be upset,” she told the station, referring to the photo and false context with which it was spread. “I wasn’t really doing anything to him and everyone thought I was and that makes me really sad. It makes me really sad that I’m so vilified.”

So there you have it, a liberal activist swiped a photo and added false context and words to it to create “fake news,” which then spread like wildfire on social media among an enraged liberal base that has grown intent on destroying those who hold a different set of beliefs than their own.

Unfortunately, this woman probably won’t be the last individual on the right to be doxxed and potentially ruined by hateful leftists, and the liberal media appear to have no qualms about aiding and abetting the spread of false smears, or at least looking the other way when they occur, as they serve a useful purpose with regard to their progressive agenda and narratives.



Scott Pruitt Becomes Latest Trump Official To Be Harassed At A Restaurant

Scott Pruitt became the most recent Trump administration figure to get an earful while trying to get a mouthful at a DC restaurant, according to a Facebook posting Monday.

Teacher Kristin Mink was shown approaching Pruitt as he chowed down with a pal at the Teaism restaurant Monday, four blocks from his office at the EPA’s headquarters.

“I just wanted to urge you to resign, because of what you’re doing to the environment in our country,” Mink said, holding her two-year-old son and a notepad, as her husband recorded the encounter.

Speaking to The Post, the 33-year-old mom from Silver Spring, Maryland explained that her husband pointed out Pruitt and her first reaction was, “He’s the worst.”

“I had to decide what to say, he’s so scandal-ridden,” Mink said. “I jotted down just a couple points that I wanted to make to him that were a little on the specific side.”

When she approached him, she said she was nervous. “This is not my wheelhouse, confronting people in a restaurant,” Mink explained.

Mink mentioned Pruitt’s $50 a night sweetheart apartment deal and his plan to roll back vehicle emissions standards.

“This is my son, he loves animals, he loves clean air, he loves clean water,” she said to Pruitt. “So I would urge you to resign before your scandals push you out,” she told the EPA head.

Pruitt gawked at her throughout the encounter. “He literally said nothing,” she told The Post. “He had no response, he had no defense, he had no apology, he did no explaining, he did no denying.”

Mink later posted the video on Facebook and Twitter explaining that Pruitt had been sitting three tables away from her as she ate lunch with her family.  “I had to say something,” she said.

Mink said Pruitt and his lunch partner left after the confrontation.

Pruitt’s spokesman claimed he didn’t leave because of Mink, and he also thanked her after she was done.

“Administrator Pruitt always welcomes input from Americans, whether they agree or disagree with the decisions being made at EPA. This is evident by him listening to her comments and going on to thank her, which is not shown in the video,” EPA spokesman Lincoln Ferguson told The Post.

“His leaving had nothing to do with the confrontation, he had simply finished his meal and needed to get back to the EPA for a briefing.”

Pruitt’s plate was covered in napkins – a sign that he had finished his meal – during the encounter.



Allen West: What Is It That the Progressive, Socialist Left Really Wants?

I remember in 2000 when actor Mel Gibson decided to step out of the genre of strong man roles, such as William Wallace of “Braveheart.” He did a movie called “What Women Want.” I must admit, it was a rather fun, comical, and different side of Mel Gibson. He played an advertisement/marketing agent who by way of a strange accident, was able to read the minds of women. Now, what man would not want that blessing, or it could be a curse, as Gibson found out? That film came to mind as I watched last week’s incessant on-camera apoplectic meltdown of the progressive, socialist left.

Of course, many of you, myself included, looked upon these different irrational outbursts singularly. Then I asked myself: What is it that the left really wants?

Let’s begin with this over the top hyperbolic reaction to the knowledge about illegal immigrant separations. I seem to not recall such mania when during the Obama administration cages and foil blankets were being used. This situation has been noted and is being rectified by the Trump administration, which issued an Executive Order.

However, as one Rahm Emanuel stated, “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste.” The left has become like an overly exuberant doggie that cannot let go of the bone. So now we have what was once considered a “fringe” position being touted by many leftist political leaders – “Abolish ICE” (Immigration and Customs Enforcement). As well, this past weekend, the left did what they do best: emotional ranting and protests for no real or apparent reason. Someone on the leftist side blew the metaphysical doggie whistle, and they all started barking and howling at the moon.

But what is it that the left really wants? Are we to believe now the left wants no enforcement of our immigration laws? Can it be that they truly do not embrace the ideal of America as a sovereign nation with borders to protect? Does the progressive, socialist left in America now “feel” that America is just an open store, and anyone can enter and shop, while others pay the bill?

I found it rather perplexing to listen to interviews on various news stations where it seems that these protesters just think that if you do not like your own country, just come here. This is a dangerous concept. The left is saying they are not for open borders, but the abolishment of said borders. If they indeed want to abolish ICE, they seek to abolish our borders. By suggesting that they don’t want enforcement of our nation’s immigration laws, the left is signaling what they really want – the end of America as a nation.

Speaking of laws, our Constitution states that a Supreme Court Justice is appointed for life. I have some different perspectives on that. The one thing, however, that tends to disrupt that constitutional directive is that we as humans are finite, and so are our cognitive abilities. Our minds and bodies fail, and therefore, the ability to make proper judgements, or in the case of one Supreme Court justice, to stay awake during a State of the Union address wane. And so it was that last week Justice Anthony Kennedy decided to step down from the Supreme Court in order to enjoy his life.

But no, that cannot be the case, nor is it in any way acceptable to the progressive, socialist left. As a matter of fact, last week, the left went manic over several SCOTUS rulings to include upholding the temporary travel injunction against countries on the terror watch list and the end of mandated union dues for government employees. Then this trifecta of disaster decision hit them, and they did not take it well at all. It has become so absurd that we even have Democrat Senators demanding a hearing by the Senate Judiciary Committee on Justice Kennedy’s retirement. Yes, the Senate Democrats want a hearing because a Supreme Court Justice wants to retire. Anyone ever heard of such a thing? During Barack Obama’s tenure as President, he appointed two Justices to the bench, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor. Yes, these are two very far left, liberal, progressive justices, but hey, that was his prerogative. Now, for some odd reason, President Donald Trump does not have that same constitutional prerogative?

I mean, you have the left ranting about blocking Supreme Court nominations, and yes, that also includes a progressive Republican Senator, Susan Collins. What does the left really want in this case? They want judicial control. If the left cannot mandate via legislative or executive means, they will advance their ideological agenda by way of judicial activism. It is abhorrent to the left to believe that they may not be controlling the Supreme Court.

And what is the doggie whistle they are using in this matter? You guessed it: Roe v. Wade. I guess it is perfectly fine with the left in America that since that decision, some 17-18M black babies have been murdered in the womb – talk about family separation. I do believe Roe v. Wade should be reexamined because I do not agree with killing unborn babies as a means of birth control, nor can I reconcile myself to accepting it as a right to take the life of our most innocent and vulnerable.

But understand, this mania from the left has nothing to do with our Constitution and its processes. It has everything to do with one of the critical pillars of support for leftist, socialist advancement in America: the court – the others being schools and the media. What does the left really want? They want control of the American court system.

Last week we saw what the Democratic party – now the leftist, socialist party of America – really wants, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a young, charismatic 28-year old professed Democratic Socialist who touts every single failed progressive, socialist idea known to man as her platform. The left in America wants more protests, more resistance, more intimidation/violence (as we saw Antifa clash with conservatives in Oregon). What the left wants is ideological domination.

Sadly, this cannot be attained by way of intellectual discourse, civility, and open debate because, as in Venezuela, all they embrace is and has been unsuccessful. Therefore, the progressive, socialist left in America, aided by a very unobjective liberal media fourth estate, pushes the emotional, irrational, and unreasonable approach as a means to their end.

What does the progressive, socialist left in America want? They want zero opposition.



Poll: Only 23% of Liberals Are 'Extremely Proud to Be Americans'

Perhaps the rest should emigrate to Venezuela

A new Gallup survey shows that only 23% of liberals are “extremely proud” to be Americans, in contrast with conservatives, 65% of whom are extremely proud of their nationality.

In the survey, Gallup asked, “How proud are you to be an American – extremely proud, very proud, moderately proud, only a little proud or not at all proud?”

For the 1,520 adults surveyed June 1-13, a record low of Americans, 47%, said they were extremely proud to be American.

However, when broken down philosophically, 65% of conservatives said “extremely proud”; 46% of moderates said “extremely proud”; and 23% of liberals said “extremely proud.”

Broken down by political party, only 32% of Democrats said they were extremely proud to be American – independents, 42%; Republicans, 74%.

The difference between men and women on the topic has increased since last year, with men who are extremely proud to be an American staying at 51%, and women dropping to 44%.  Those who are “extremely proud” increase with age, as just 33% of those 18 to 29 say they are, whereas 58% of those 65 and older are.

There is also a significant difference between those who have graduated college and those who have not: 39% of college graduates are extremely proud to be an American, whereas 52% of those who have not graduated college are.

“Fewer than half of U.S. adults are extremely proud to be Americans, something that had not been seen in the prior 17 years Gallup has asked the public about its national pride,” said the survey firm.

“Politics appears to be a factor, with sharp declines evident among Democrats and political liberals and no decrease among Republicans and conservatives,” reported Gallup.  

“Left-leaning groups' antipathy toward Donald Trump and their belief that other countries look unfavorably on the president are likely factors in their decline in patriotism, particularly the sharp drops in the past year,” said Gallup.  “But the declines began before Trump was elected.”



Trump swimsuits now out

Stylish but restrained


For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


4 July, 2018

Government-enforced helicopter parenting at home, blind eyes to children at the border

The American Left has some curious ideas about what constitutes proper parenting.

Only four years ago the media disseminated a number of stories about government intervention against “irresponsible” parents. In August 2104, a Florida mother who let her seven-year-old son walk less than half a mile from their home to a park to play was charged with child neglect. A 46-year-old single mother working as a McDonald’s shift manager spent 17 days in jail for allowing her nine-year-old daughter to play unsupervised at a nearby park. And a year later in Maryland, a couple who let their two children, ages 10 and six, walk home alone from a neighborhood park were “found responsible for unsubstantiated child neglect” according to the state’s Child Protective Services.

This coverage precipitated a discussion about what was dubbed “free range” parenting in general and, more specifically, about the struggles low-income and/or single parents face regarding what to do with their children during the summer months when they still have to work and school is not in session.

Boston College psychology professor emeritus Peter Gray, author of “Free to Learn,” has little use for a mindset revealed by a Reason/Rupe poll. It showed that 68% of parents believe it should be illegal for kids nine years old and under to play at a park unsupervised, and 43% of parents believe the same prohibition should apply to 12-year-olds. Gray asserts, “I doubt there has ever been a human culture, anywhere, anytime, that underestimates children’s abilities more than we North Americans do today.”

Columnist Steve Berman emphasized the hypocrisy of what amounted to government-enforced helicopter parenting. He asks, “Are we really raising our kids in a safe space bubble, while we remember riding our bikes all hours until sunset, or until we got hungry and came home?”

Undoubtedly. Why? The most persuasive answer is technology. Despite the fact that parents who want to are now capable of tracking their children 24/7, they are also besieged by “a global, always-on news cycle, as well as increased connectivity on social media platforms, which recycles ‘over and over again’ kidnappings, rape and other threatening incidents,” Dr. Gail Saltz, professor of psychology at New York Presbyterian Hospital, explains.

Thus it doesn’t matter that crime rates have fallen significantly.

What does matter? Over-protected and over-indulged children “become adults who see no problem censoring people with whom they don’t agree, seeking segregation from others who are too different from themselves to bother relating to, and asserting that they are the best of the best in all things,” Berman asserts. “In other words, we could be raising a generation of Big Brother-loving powder puff despots.”

Given this context, it remains rather remarkable how sanguine many of those same parents — abetted by the Leftmedia, the Democrat Party and immigration activist groups — remain with regard to the flood of Unaccompanied Alien Children (UACs) dispersed throughout the United States in recent years. In 2014, when that flood was dubbed the “border surge” by the same Leftmedia, columnist Victor Davis Hanson posed a telling question. “What sort of callous parents simply send their children as pawns northward without escort, in selfish hopes of soon winning for themselves either remittances or eventual passage to the U.S?” he wondered.

Maybe the kind of parent who has gotten the subtle-as-a-sledgehammer message that what amounted to human trafficking was enabled by the Obama administration. That reality was revealed at a 2014 Senate hearing when Mark Greenberg, Health and Human Services Acting Assistant Secretary for the Administration for Children and Families, admitted that even if the Obama administration knew it was releasing UACs to other illegal aliens, they would do so based on the “totality of the circumstances.” When pressed by then-Sen. Tom Coburn, Greenburg further admitted that the “totality” of refusing to inquire about the status of those taking custody of the UACs was HHS policy.

How did those UACs get here? Many of them rode “La Bestia,” a.k.a. “the beast” — the Mexican freight trains these children rode on top of to get though that nation into ours. Thousands of them were killed or gravely injured, and those that made it were inevitably besieged by traffickers, thieves and corrupt Mexican policemen and soldiers. Moreover, most of the female children are raped during the journey, which is the “price” often demanded for transport by traffickers. In fact, a 2010 report from the leftist group Amnesty International states, “According to some experts, the prevalence of rape is such that people smugglers may require women to have a contraceptive injection prior to the journey as a precaution.”

Regardless, the media-orchestrated outrage generated by the Trump administration’s decision to separate children from their alleged parents (one of the reasons the policy was implemented was to determine exactly that), led the president to usurp existing law and reunite them. And despite that orchestrated hype, a Rasmussen poll released on June 21 revealed that when families were arrested and separated for attempting to enter America illegally, 54% of the public held the illegal alien parents more accountable than the American government, compared to only 35% who held the government more accountable.

Even worse for those who promote an open borders agenda masquerading as “compassion,” 54% of those surveyed also agreed with Trump’s assertion that America “will not be a migrant camp” or a “refugee-holding facility.”

Yet unless Congress acts, those are empty assertions. According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), asylum requires one to be physically present in the United States in order to obtain it. Yet there’s a giant loophole in the requirement. “You may apply for asylum status regardless of how you arrived in the United States or your current immigration status,” the website states.

If the Ruling Class were genuinely interested in eliminating the incentive behind the flood of border-busters and visa over-stayers that have precipitated a staggering 1,700% increase in asylum claims over the last decade, the simplest of laws would suffice going forward:

Anyone in America illegally will automatically be disqualified from receiving asylum.

Just putting a bill like that up for a vote would provide the American public with laser-like insight regarding which members of Congress are interested in dis-incentivizing rampant law-breaking and which members are not.

The alternative? The continued congressional collaboration with the encouragement of despicable parenting choices, along with the rank hypocrisy of taking the Trump administration to task for attempting to mitigate the flood of UACs that amount to a whopping 83% of the children held by the Department of Homeland Security, enabled (read: encouraged) by previous administrations.

And while the current progressive-incited hand-wringing continues, it’s worth remembering a very inconvenient reality: For at least five months in 2009, Democrats had complete control of Congress and the White House, including a filibuster- proof, 60 seat Senate majority. What did they do about fixing the nation’s immigration problem?

Absolutely nothing.



Immigration: You ain't seen nothin yet

Its new far-Left adminstration will see a big upsurge of poverty in Mexico -- sending a huge wave of illegals towards the USA

In a landslide victory over the weekend, unabashed socialist and former mayor of Mexico City Andrés Manuel López Obrador won the Mexican presidency, just as we noted he would Friday, becoming the first far leftist in decades to take the office. Campaigning on a leftist-populist platform that included a call for an end to the war on drugs, raising the minimum wage and free college, Obrador made the biggest international headlines with his comments on illegal immigration. He declared that poor Mexicans should "leave their towns and find a life in the United States" — that it was their "human right." Yes, our neighbor's president-elect called for mass migration to our country.

A brief look at the numbers should give any American pause when seeing a socialist take over a nation that is already exploiting its relationship with the U.S. on several fronts. Take NAFTA for instance. Currently, our second-largest trade deficit, standing at $70 billion annually, is with Mexico. NAFTA was billed as a means to bring about greater parity between the American and Mexican economies, which in turn was supposed to help neutralize the problem of illegal immigration. Three and a half decades later, however, and the problem of illegal immigration has only become more acute. The profits from NAFTA have done little more than increase the power of Mexican drug cartels and nearly 44% of Mexicans still live below the national poverty line.

Moreover, an estimated 12% of the Mexican population now lives within the U.S. — and a huge number are here illegally. Not only are they benefiting from the American economy and welfare, but they are sending a whopping $30 billion annually back to Mexico. Is it any wonder Obrador is encouraging illegal immigration? By cracking down, he would not only stem a significant source of revenue but would also invite the wrath of the drug cartels whose illicit trade depends upon illegal immigration and human trafficking.

What makes Obrador's election so concerning to the U.S. is the fact that his proposed leftist policies would only exacerbate America's border and trade problems. Look no further than the devastating effects socialist policies have had in Venezuela. Now imagine that type of economic collapse happening — accelerating — in Mexico. It will make America's current immigration crisis look tame. Has there ever been a more important motivation than now to build the wall?



NBC’s Chuck Todd Admits Trump Is ‘Winning’ While Democrats Are ‘Reeling’

Host of NBC’s “Meet The Press” Chuck Todd said President Donald Trump is “winning” the policy war against Democrats Sunday, as the left continues to falter.

“The announced retirement of Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy this week helped make one political reality clear — despite his overall unpopularity, President Trump is winning, and the Democrats right now are reeling,” Todd said.

“The Supreme Court, Mr. Trump is about to shape the court for a generation by choosing a possible tie-breaking conservative justice, and he’s already filled the lower courts with like-minded conservatives.”

Todd also said Trump is enjoying solid support throughout the GOP and highlighted his success in turning the term “fake news” against the mainstream press.

“How about the Republican party? The president’s approval rating among Republicans is around 90 percent. Elected Republicans fear criticizing him,” Todd continued. “How about fake news? Mr. Trump has turned that phrase, which initially referred to the phony Russian generated stories designed to support his campaign in 2016, into an applause line now to discredit responsible reporting showcasing his misdeeds.”

“If reporters faithfully fact check the president’s serial misstatements they risk being considered biased. If they don’t, misstatements gain traction. Either way, Mr. Trump wins.”

Todd believes Trump has found success in discrediting special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation while garnering praise for the country’s recent economic boom.

“The Mueller investigation — the president has succeeded in convincing millions that the investigation is biased, despite trafficking only in innuendo and not providing evidence,” he concluded. “Then there’s the economy. It is doing well, but it was doing well before he took office. Yet with unemployment down and jobs being created, President Trump is getting this credit.”



Australia ends direct aid to Palestinian Authority

Australia has ceased providing direct aid to the Palestinian Authority (PA), with Foreign Minister Julie Bishop saying the donations could increase the self-governing body's capacity to pay Palestinians convicted of politically motivated violence.

Ms Bishop said funding was cut to the World Bank's Multi-Donor Trust Fund for the Palestinian Recovery and Development Program after writing to the Palestinian Authority in late May seeking assurance that Australian funding was not going to Palestinian criminals.

Australia sends about $10 million in aid to Palestine territories. It will now direct its funds through the United Nations.

Concerns have been raised by some Coalition politicians, including backbencher Eric Abetz, that the money sent through the World Bank had gone towards funding violence in the region.

Ms Bishop said she was confident no Australian funds had been used inappropriately. "I am confident that previous Australian funding to the PA through the World Bank has been used as intended," she said in a statement.

    "However, I am concerned that in providing funds for this aspect of the PA's operations, there is an opportunity for it to use its own budget to [fund] activities that Australia would never support."

"Any assistance provided by the Palestine Liberation Organisation to those convicted of politically motivated violence is an affront to Australian values and undermines the prospect of meaningful peace between Israel and the Palestinians," she added.

Australia allocated $43 million for humanitarian assistance in the region for the current fiscal year, which began on July 1.
Australia following US lead

In March, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised the US Government for passing a law that suspended some financial aid to the Palestinians over the stipends paid to families of Palestinians killed or jailed in fighting with Israel.

Mr Netanyahu said the Taylor Force Act, named after an American killed in Israel by a Palestinian in 2016, a "powerful signal by the US that changes the rules" by cutting "hundreds of millions of dollars for the Palestinian Authority that they invest in encouraging terrorism".

Palestinian official Nabil Abu Rdeneh condemned the law, saying it did not "allow for the creation of an atmosphere conducive to peace".

Mr Abetz welcomed Ms Bishop's decision.

    "Minister Bishop's strong and decisive decision today to ensure that the Palestinian Authority can no longer use our aid to free up money in its budget for state-promoted terrorism is very positive," Mr Abetz said.

Ms Bishop said the United Nations' Humanitarian Fund helps 1.9 million people, predominately in the Gaza Strip where the humanitarian situation continues to deteriorate.



Iranian & Democrat Officials Agree - Jews DO Control the Weather!

Not The Onion, I promise.

The Islamic Republic of Iran accused the Jewish State of Israel of cloud and snow theft. Jews were blamed for moving the clouds away from Iran, in an intentional effort to exacerbate Iran's prolonged drought.

"We are facing the issue of cloud and snow theft,” Brigadier General Gholam Reza Jalali, head of Iran’s Civil Defense Organization, said at a press conference, while blaming Israel and another country for the weather larceny. He cited a survey showing that, above 2,200 meters (7,218 feet), all mountainous areas between Afghanistan and the Mediterranean are covered in snow, except Iran.

Earlier this year, a Democrat lawmaker in D.C. similarly accused Jews of controlling the weather when he experienced snow in March, regurgitating a California conspiracy theorist's anti-Semitic propaganda about Jews controlling climate change.

But alas, I have solved the mystery of the stolen snow clouds. The unwanted snow clouds that came into D.C. in March were, in fact, the snow clouds intended for Iran in July, but stolen, and then sent back in time to attack D.C.!

Both the Democrat and the Iranian officials appear to have kept their jobs.

To be fair, the Democrat did apologize to the Jews, because, he explained, they funded his campaign, sooo ...

And the Iranian official was contradicted by an Iranian meteorologist, but now that the scientist has contradicted the Iranian government, we may never hear from him again, sooo ...



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


3 July, 2018  

Trump welcomes Democrats' calls to abolish ICE: 'They're going to get beaten so badly'

President Trump said Sunday that Democrats “will never win another election” if they keep pushing to abolish Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

“I hope they keep thinking about it. Because they’re going to get beaten so badly,” he told Fox News’ Maria Bartiromo. “You get rid of ICE, you’re going to have a country that you’re going to be afraid to walk out of your house. I love that issue if they’re going to actually do that.”

He predicted that Democratic leaders will alienate voters this year with an agenda of lax immigration enforcement.

“If the Democrats go left… between [Rep.] Maxine Waters, and [House minority leader] Nancy Pelosi and getting rid of ICE, and having open borders … all it’s going to do is leads to massive, massive crime,” Mr. Trump said. “That’s going to be their platform, open borders, which equals crime. I think they’ll never win another election, so I’m actually quite happy about it.”

His comments came amid weekend protests across the country against the administration’s immigration policies, with calls to abolish ICE endorsed by leading Democrats such as Sens. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio.



Leave Google alone

I hesitated in putting up the article below by Jeff Jacoby. Like most conservatives I am irate at the Leftist bias in almost all social media.  But Jeff does make an interesting case

SHOULD THE GOVERNMENT break up Google, as it broke up Standard Oil and AT&T, for being a monopoly too big to tolerate? Let's consider that question as we take a stroll down memory lane.

 * In March 1998, Fortune Magazine chronicled the rise of a mighty tech giant, an online powerhouse it described as "the biggest star in the Internet cosmos." The headline on the piece: "How Yahoo! Won The Search Wars." So popular and wealthy had Yahoo! become, Fortune noted, that "some people say it's the next American Online."

 * Nine years later, The Guardian reported on the Internet's number one social-media platform, the most-visited website in America. "Will MySpace ever lose its monopoly?" it asked, strongly suggesting the answer was no. MySpace's user base, massive and fast-growing, was "becoming what economists call a 'natural monopoly,'" said The Guardian. "It may already be too late for competitors to dislodge MySpace."

 * The following December, Forbes celebrated the undisputed Goliath in mobile communications. On the magazine's cover was a picture of a confident CEO holding one of his company's telephones to his ear. The headline was just as cocky: "Nokia. One Billion Customers — Can Anyone Catch The Cell Phone King?"

A chorus of critics has been sounding alarums lately about the monopoly power of Big Tech corporations like Google, demanding that the federal government bring antitrust prosecutions to clip their wings or split them into smaller firms. These latter-day trustbusters claim that Google uses its outsize market power to stifle competitors and suppress innovation, that it jiggers its search algorithms to boost its own products over its rivals', and that its staggering dominance has rendered it too big to be tamed through the normal resiliency of the market.

But the notion that government intervention is needed to cut Google down to size is utterly misguided.

If there is an immutable lesson to be learned from the history of market economics and corporate power, it is that kings of the hill don't reign forever. Supposedly invulnerable businesses are challenged by nimble upstarts with disruptive ideas. They lose market share as customers' tastes change. They fail to adapt because success makes them overcautious.

Just ask the titans from our stroll down memory lane. Yahoo! is now far from "the biggest star in the Internet cosmos." MySpace long ago lost its social-media monopoly. Nokia's billion customers migrated to Apple and Android.

Similar fates befell AOL and Blackberry and Palm. Web browser Netscape gave way to Internet Explorer, which gave way in turn to Firefox and Chrome. Hotmail was deposed by Gmail. Now iTunes is being pushed back by Spotify and Amazon Prime.

There are no perpetual market leaders in business. Sooner or later, every Goliath is displaced by a David. Unless history has ended, that goes for Google, too. And it won't require government intercession to make it happen.

Much is made by the antitrust enthusiasts of Google's overwhelming supremacy in Internet search. "Google has succeeded where Genghis Khan, communism, and Esperanto all failed: It dominates the globe," wrote Charles Duhigg in a recent New York Times Magazine essay. In the United States, Google accounts for about 87 percent of search engine activity. Since it has competitors (quite a few, in fact), it isn't literally a monopoly — it dominates the search market, but doesn't control it absolutely.

Even using the term colloquially, though, Google is a "monopoly" only in its corner of the Internet playing field: search engine advertising. That is certainly an important corner, but it isn't the whole digital universe. It isn't even the whole search universe.

Nine out of 10 people may "Google" when they want to know where Timbuktu is or see pictures of Meghan Markle's wedding dress. But for the soaring population of online shoppers, Google is no longer the leading search destination. Amazon is. As of December 2016, Amazon was the starting point for 52 percent of product searches, up from 38 percent just two years earlier. A charge frequently levied by the break-up-Google crowd is that the company unfairly boosts its own Google Shopping search results over those of other price-comparison sites. Yet even if that represents an abuse of Google's economic clout — a highly debatable "if" — it's an abuse that matters less and less as Google gets squeezed out of shopping-related searches.

Already there are those who speculate that Google's power has peaked. If it hasn't, it will. As marketing industry journal Ad Age reported in January, "Google's share of search ad revenue is declining and will continue to erode each year."

Google is no Standard Oil or AT&T. Unlike those 20th-century hegemons, it is in a nonstop fight against formidable rivals for customers, revenue, and market share.

Search is only one area in which Google faces pressure from the other tech giants. Google Docs is challenged by Microsoft Word and Apple Pages; Google's Android battles the iPhone; Google Assistant competes with Amazon's Alexa. And in the burgeoning market for cloud computing, Google is hardly more than a bit player .

None of this adds up to a case for prosecution. Google is big, but the purpose of antitrust law isn't to curb bigness. It is to protect consumers from harm. And Google, far from hurting consumers, has showered them with gains.

Google gives away its foremost product, Internet search, for free. Ditto most of its hundreds of other products, from Gmail to Translate to Google Earth to Waze. It plowed $14 billion into R&D last year, more than any company in America except Amazon. Of the brands Americans love most, according to Morning Consult's authoritative polling, Google is number one.

Yes, Google's left-wing bias can be obnoxious; it seems clear that its search results often skew against conservatives. But to target a private corporation because of its politics is something no conservative should favor. This conservative certainly doesn't.

If the consumer's best interest is the standard, the case for breaking up Google is nonexistent. There will be time enough to cry "Monopoly!" and let slip the dogs of antitrust when there is evidence that Google injures its users or is immune to market discipline. Long before that day arrives, however, Google will have taken its place as just another attraction along memory lane, a once-mighty corporation that was king of the hill — until it wasn't.



Big black on black shootout at Georgia "nightclub"

Another gun incident that will not get media coverage coast to coast

The "nightclub"

Eight people were shot overnight at a nightclub in Ashburn, Georgia, police say.

Nobody was killed in the shooting, which broke out at Studio 2.0 - a recently opened nightclub, about 2.30am, but all victims have been taken to hospital. One victim was airlifted to a hospital in Macon.

GBI Special Agent J.T. Ricketson told 11 Alive when police arrived to calls of shots fired, there were people wounded on the ground and bullet casings littered around the carpark.

Three cars had blown out windows, believed to be from gunfire, and police found evidence people under 21 had been drinking and smoking marijuana. The club does not yet have a liquor license. 

Distressed locals have taken to social media to discuss what they believe to be the case, with many blaming a 'county vs county' party held last night.

Police confirmed the party, which had an attendance of up to 200, had attracted the wrong sorts of people.

A spokesman for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said members of two local gangs - 'The Shine Boys' from Cordele and 'The Glow Boys' from Ashburn, also attended.

Investigators believe a dispute between the two gangs is what led to the horrific shooting. 



Small business is immensely important for jobs -- and they have been energized by Trump

Most Americans are focused on what matters to their families and their communities, not on the latest overblown scandals reported by the mainstream media. Unsurprisingly, that focus is producing unprecedented economic optimism. President Trump is delivering on his promise.

America is open for business. Most significantly, America is open for small business. Trump is the most supportive small business leader the nation has seen in recent memory. Just this month, Trump signed off on a new rule that allows small businesses and self-employed workers to buy coalition health insurance plans, a move that will lower the price of policies, expand coverage, and free these businesses from some of the worst regulations imposed by the Affordable Care Act.

The Small Business Optimism Index increased in May to the second highest level in 45 years. “Main Street optimism is on a stratospheric trajectory thanks to recent tax cuts and regulatory changes. For years, owners have continuously signaled that when taxes and regulations ease, earning and employee compensation increase,” said Juanita Duggan, president of the National Federation of Independent Businesses. Speaking at a conference last week, Trump called the audience of small business owners the “engine of American prosperity.”

The MetLife and U.S. Chamber of Commerce Small Business Index also recorded record optimism. Of those surveyed, 48 percent felt good about their local economies, the highest level in the history of the index. Confidence in the Midwest is at 50 percent, and in the West, confidence is at 55 percent. Moreover, 40 percent of millennials said they plan to quit traditional jobs in order to start their own small businesses.

The historic tax cut spearheaded by Trump and advised by my friend Larry Kudlow has not only stimulated remarkable growth, investment and record low unemployment, but has also garnered widespread support, with more than 60 percent of respondents to a recent poll by Frank Luntz anticipating an overall positive effect on the economy. It is time to call this economy and the attendant optimism what it is: the Trump boom.

So who benefits? That is where it gets really interesting. A 2017 survey by the Kauffman Foundation found that 24 percent of new entrepreneurs were Hispanic, 9 percent were African American, and 7.5 percent were Asian. Just over 40 percent of new businesses were formed by minorities. This past quarter, 18 percent of small business owners said they were adding staff. Finally, 65 percent of women small business owners expect higher revenues in the next year, compared to 61 percent of men.

Trump has made opportunity, entrepreneurship and wealth creation both possible and appealing again. Consumers are buying and wages are rising. America is getting back to work. Trump promised to roll back 22 regulations for every new regulation, and he is making good on that.

Granger MacDonald, a homebuilder in Texas, told the New York Times, “It’s an overall sense that you’re not going to face any new regulatory fights. We’re not spending more, which is the main thing.” He added that homebuilders have benefitted from rolling back regulations under the Obama administration, including a rule that broadened the definition of wetlands, which would have restricted homebuilding in many areas.

Finally, millions of Americans on Main Street, not just Wall Street, are reaping the benefits of the Trump administration’s deregulatory agenda, which promotes innovation and economic growth. The media continues to moan, but the rest of us hear a different tune, that of ringing cash registers, which are the sounds of prosperity and hope.



Do you know Stephen Miller?

David Horowitz

I've warned for years about the Left's evil, violent nature...now we're watching it happen. Within the last few weeks, the Secretary of Homeland Security was chased out of a restaurant and an animal carcass was left at another DHS official's front door.

It's not just DHS staffers at risk because of President Trump's strong immigration policies... the Left-Wing mobs are also after Stephen Miller, top policy aide to President Trump.

They showed up at his apartment screaming epithets and handing out wanted posters accusing him of "crimes against humanity" because he's the administration's strongest voice against the illegal immigrant invasion.

Miller's crime? Saying—and believing—the following: "The U.S. government has a sacred, solemn, inviolable obligation to enforce the laws of the United States and to stop illegal immigration and to secure and protect the border."

For this, Miller is stalked by mobs and denounced as a "racist and fascist." He's also attacked because he's my dear friend, and a living testament to what the Freedom Center does.

You see, I met Steve right after 9/11 when he was 17 years old senior at Santa Monica High School. At schools elsewhere in the country there had been a patriotic upsurge after the attack on our country.

But not at Santa Monica High. There the anti Americanism was so bad that one teacher placed a flag on the doorway to his classroom, forcing students to walk on it when they entered.

Steve Miller not only objected but went public, making the situation at SMHS a matter of community concern. He invited me to speak to the school. The principal tried to block me but Steve wouldn't cave.

I stayed in touch with Steve when he went off to Duke University and when he graduated I helped get him a job first with Congresswoman Michele Bachman and later with then Senator Jeff Sessions.

Sessions was so pleased with Miller's political courage and shrewd intelligence that he wrote me this note:

"David, your advice on the talents of Stephen Miller have been proven correct many times over! He is a true warrior for truth and justice! Thanks for your recommendation and for training him."

Now Steve Miller has taken his fight for the American future to the highest levels of our government and we're very lucky to have such a fearless opponent the left's open borders movement.

Via email. info@horowitzfreedomcenter.org


For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


2 July, 2018  

What Lincoln Foresaw Would Occur If Maxine Waters, Others Got Their Way With Mob Justice

Lincoln has already been proved right.  With typical Leftist lack of foresight, Waters did not foresee pushback against her foul comments.  Now it has come. She has received a couple of threats of violence against her -- reducing her to a blubbering heap.  Leftism really is a mental defect

In 1836, at the Young Men’s Lyceum in Springfield, Illinois, a 28-year-old lawyer named Abraham Lincoln delivered one of his finest addresses.

Lincoln condemned the sharp increase of mobs in America, which had exploded in number as the debate over slavery and regional animosity intensified.

“Accounts of outrages committed by mobs, form the every-day news of the times,” Lincoln said.

Many of these mobs had turned violent and subverted the law. They were undermining free government.

Calls for civility are sometimes vapid excuses to shut down political dissent. But what’s occurring now in America is not just heated debate at political rallies, it’s a surge in mob activity directed at political opponents in everyday life.

In just the past few weeks we’ve seen the harassment of a Trump Cabinet member, Kirstjen Nielsen, at a District of Columbia restaurant.

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, a Republican, was, somewhat ironically, accosted as she left a movie about Fred Rogers, or “Mr. Rogers,” the nationally beloved children’s show host famous for welcoming people to his fictional neighborhood.

These incidents were bad enough, but some are calling for much more.

Over the weekend, the owners of a Virginia restaurant booted White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders because of her association with the Trump administration.

This incident provoked the debate over freedom of association, but then Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., stepped into the fray and made the situation worse.

At a rally Saturday, the Los Angeles congresswoman called for mobs to go after political opponents wherever they may be.

“Let’s make sure we show up wherever we have to show up. And if you see anybody from that Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd,” Waters yelled.

Waters also said in an interview with MSNBC: “I want to tell you, these members of [Trump’s] Cabinet who remain and try to defend him, they won’t be able to go to a restaurant, they won’t be able to stop at a gas station, they’re not going to be able to shop at a department store.”

Some activists have grabbed hold of these recent incidents to call for more radical action. One writer on a left-wing blog, Splinter, went even further than Waters. In an article titled “This Is Just the Beginning,” he took the next big leap to essentially condoning outright violence:

"Read a recent history book. The U.S. had thousands of domestic bombings per year in the early 1970s. This is what happens when citizens decide en masse that their political system is corrupt, racist, and unresponsive. The people out of power have only just begun to flex their dissatisfaction. The day will come, sooner that you all think, when Trump administration officials will look back fondly on the time when all they had to worry about was getting hollered at at a Mexican restaurant."

Of course, Lincoln in his Lyceum address begged to differ.

“There is no grievance that is a fit object of redress by mob law,” Lincoln said. “In any case that arises, as for instance, the promulgation of abolitionism, one of two positions is necessarily true; that is, the thing is right within itself, and therefore deserves the protection of all law and all good citizens; or, it is wrong, and therefore proper to be prohibited by legal enactments; and in neither case, is the interposition of mob law either necessary, justifiable, or excusable.”

Some, even on the left, have been a little unnerved by calls for mobs, whether violent or nonviolent, to attack political foes in everyday life.

“Those who are insisting that we are in a special moment justifying incivility should think for a moment how many Americans might find their own special moment,” The Washington Post said in an editorial. “How hard is it to imagine, for example, people who strongly believe that abortion is murder deciding that judges or other officials who protect abortion rights should not be able to live peaceably with their families?”

Her fellow Democrats have voiced some condemnation of Waters’ demand for mobs to harass political opponents. Much of this criticism has been muted, though.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., did take to Twitter, calling such language “unacceptable,” but ultimately blamed President Donald Trump for the “provoked responses.”

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., offered the strongest condemnation of Waters, saying that calling for harassment of political opponents is “not American.”

One would hope that mob law and mob justice don’t become the norm, but we’ve already seen a steady uptick in the mentality that leads to that point.

We’ve seen it with the mobs that descended on historic statues to illegally pulverize them in the name of social justice. Now the mobs are coming for living people.

This kind of ugliness is a bad sign for our future.

Lincoln explained to his Springfield audience what could ultimately destroy the United States.

“Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant, to step the Ocean, and crush us at a blow?” Lincoln asked.

No, never.

“At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected?” Lincoln asked again. “I answer, if it ever reach us, it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide.”

Passionate debates are good and healthy in a republic.

There was never a “golden age of civility” when all Americans got along, nor should we necessarily desire one.

Nevertheless, the ability to live together as free citizens in large part necessitates a respect for civil relations among us, where we look to persuasion and ballots to put our ideas in action, not brute intimidation of opponents.

The constitutional system the Founding Fathers built is strong, but it can’t survive when citizens en masse are ready to come to blows with one another on a semipermanent basis, are ready and willing to gin up mobs to go after one another for political disagreements.

That system shattered in 1860, and ended with the bloodiest period in our nation’s history.

This sort of crackup may, in fact, be what some want, but it’s unlikely to end well for those who believe in free institutions in the United States.



Holocaust Survivor Has Message for Americans Calling Detention Centers ‘Concentration Camps’

It used to be that anyone who compared a president to the infamous Austrian dictator was ignored or laughed out of town. Today, that appalling comparison is being thrown around with reckless abandon … but a Polish-American Holocaust survivor has had enough of the dangerous discourse.

“Listen to me. I went through it. Please,” Polish-born David Tuck looked into the camera during a sobering interview with The Daily Caller.

“This is not a concentration camp,” he stated bluntly about the HHS and ICE refugee centers that have drawn so much uninformed ire from the left-leaning media.

Tuck knows a few things about actual concentration camps in tragic, first-hand detail. He witnessed true horrors as a Jew who was thrown into camps by Nazis, and barely survived hellish conditions in places such as Posen and Auschwitz.

The Holocaust survivor is adamant about one thing: There is absolutely nothing in common between U.S. border refugee centers and real concentration camps.

“I looked up there (at the border centers) and I said to myself, all the mattresses, everything … food. I said, at that time I’d think it was a country club,” Tuck explained to Daily Caller.

That matches the true image of border centers that have come out since the immigration issue reached a fever pitch over the last few weeks. Contrary to the staged and deceptive images of “kids in cages,” the actual centers are safe and comfortable shelters where social workers work to help children and everyone is well fed.

The conditions that the elderly survivor remembers have much more in common with socialist regimes like North Korea or Venezuela than America.

When asked by the Daily Caller journalist if he had a message for media talking heads and radical leftists who think America runs concentration camps on the border, Tuck said two blunt words: “Grow up.”



ICE Director Tells Protesting Democrats to ‘Get Their Facts Straight and Inform Themselves’

As demonstrators across the nation prepared to protest the Trump administration’s “zero-tolerance” immigration policy this week, the director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement had some advice for those seeking to blame his agency for the results.

More than 700 protests were planned for Saturday after weeks of mounting backlash over a policy that resulted in family separations and reports of children being temporarily housed in what critics have described as cages.

In recent days, ICE has been the target of increasing opposition by demonstrators and even some elected officials.

As a protest movement to “Abolish ICE” has gained some traction in recent days, two prominent New York politicians, both Democrats, have endorsed the effort.

U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand said in an interview on Thursday that she believed the agency “has become a deportation force,” adding that “you should get rid of it, start over, reimagine it and build something that actually works.”

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio offered a pithier take in a radio interview the following morning.

“We should abolish ICE,” he said.

Tom Homan, the agency’s acting director, defended the agency against such protests and suggested those calling for its dissolution are misplacing their anger.

“They need to educate themselves,” he said in a Fox News interview on Friday. “I mean this protest yesterday to protest about family separations on the border, ICE doesn’t separate families on the border. That’s the Border Patrol. We’re a different agency.”

Though he said critics of ICE “need to get their facts straight” about the two federal agencies, he noted that the U.S. Border Patrol is not to blame for the controversial practice either.

“If the American public wants to know who to blame for family separations, the first people they need to blame is Congress,” Homan said. “We went up the Hill several months ago and told them what the loopholes were.”

He took specific aim at Gillibrand for her statements about the agency. “She needs to study the issue too because she went to a protest on family separation on the border and she tries to blame ICE for it — ICE separated families,” he said. “First of all, she’s got to get her facts straight.”

Homan also saved some indignation for other elected officials who have been similarly critical of ICE and other agencies working to secure the border.

“I’m insulted at a lot of the Democratic senators and congressmen that want to vilify the men and women that put their lives on the line every day for this country,” he said.

Though Homan is in the process of retirement, he pledged to continue working on behalf of those enforcing America’s border laws amid ongoing attacks by protesters.



2 Reasons Why the Media Will Drop Coverage of the Capital Gazette Shooting

The shooting was not politically motivated but those who knew the shooter say he was a very angry man.  Maybe as angry as the Leftist critics of Donald Trump. One can only guess how he voted but birds of a feather flock together

On Thursday, four journalists and one staff member of the Capital Gazette were murdered in the newspaper’s Annapolis, Maryland, office.

While the event was initially widely covered by all major news outlets, the media is likely to quickly move on from the story, just like it did with the Santa Fe High School shooting, because it doesn’t fit the right narrative. (Unlike many of the Parkland students, the Santa Fe students didn’t respond to the tragedy by calling for gun control measures.)

That in itself is a shame, not just because there is much to learn from this tragedy, but also because the inspiring courage of the surviving journalists deserves more than a single news cycle.

Why It Will Go Away Quickly

Reason No. 1: It doesn’t fit the gun control narrative.

This shooting can’t be blamed on lax gun laws. Maryland has some of the strictest gun control laws in the country, earning it an A- rating from the Giffords Law Center—one of only six states to earn above a B+ score. It has enacted almost all of the gun control measures commonly proposed by gun control advocates.

And yet, despite this, not only did this incident occur, but Baltimore is one of the worst cities in the U.S. for gun-related violence, and was recently named by USA Today as “the nation’s most dangerous city.” In the last sixth months, 120 Baltimore residents have been murdered with firearms—21 in the last 30 days. Maryland itself does not fit the gun control narrative.

But this tragedy does fit the actual common fact pattern of mass public shootings: An individual with a long history of concerning behaviors managed to avoid a disqualifying criminal or mental health record, took a legally owned “non-assault” firearm to a gun-free zone, and picked off defenseless people in the time it took law enforcement to respond.

This reality, however, is inconvenient for pushing common gun control measures like raising the minimum purchase age to 21, imposing universal background checks, and banning “assault weapons.”

That makes it much more likely this story will quietly fade and be replaced by other stories that can be better weaponized against conservatives, like Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement.

Reason No. 2: Pundits immediately—and incorrectly—blamed President Donald Trump.

Within an hour of the first reports of shots fired in the Capital Gazette building, numerous media pundits took it upon themselves to blame the shooting on Trump’s rhetoric about “fake news.” A Reuters reporter accused the president of having blood on his hands, followed by similar accusations from a New York Times journalist, a White House correspondent, an investigative reporter from Politico, and other high-profile media personalities.

They were completely, unequivocally wrong.

The suspect wasn’t motivated by political ideology, but by a longstanding feud with the newspaper that predates Trump’s election by roughly four years. Had these journalists waited for the facts of the situation to come out, they could have avoided looking exactly like the “fake news” media the president has accused them of being.

Instead, they’re having to backtrack and justify irrational statements. That’s not an easy job, and often requires a bit of humility.

On the other hand, simply dropping the story as fast as possible is much more convenient.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


1 July, 2018

Justice Dept. announces new family detention policy for illegal immigrants

The administration announced a new policy Friday to detain nearly all illegal immigrant families nabbed at the border, offering the latest bold ante in an ongoing battle over President Trump’s attempt to stop a new surge of migration.

The policy will be controversial not only with congressional Democrats and immigrant-rights activists, but also with a federal judge who had ordered that children could be held no longer than 20 days in immigration detention.

Government lawyers, though, said yet another judge’s ruling earlier this week making most family separations illegal supersedes the 20-day rule and other restrictions, and gives the government the ability to hold families together until their immigration cases are completed.

“The government will not separate families but detain families together during the pendency of immigration proceedings when they are apprehended at or between ports of entry,” the Justice Department said in a filing with Judge Dolly M. Gee.

The arguments come as lower courts are increasingly asserting control of the immigration system — leaving the executive branch struggling to carry out its own policies amid potentially competing rulings and judges working at cross purposes.



If the (Brown) Shirt Fits...

The hateful vitriol of the American Left is reminiscent of a hateful vitriolic 20th century leader.

“The art of leadership consists in consolidating the attention of the people against a single adversary and taking care that nothing will split up that attention.”

“F—k Trump!” —Robert De Niro

“Mr. President, f—k you!” —Caitlin Marriott, an intern for Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-NH). Marriott was suspended, but will continue working through August.

“You’re the presi-dunce but you’re turning into a real prick-tator. … In fact, the only thing your mouth is good for is being Vladimir Putin’s c—k holster.” —Stephen Colbert

“Demoralize the enemy from within by surprise, terror, sabotage, assassination. This is the war of the future.”

“It’s time to ask whether the attack on the United States Congress Wednesday was foreseeable, predictable and, to some degree, self-inflicted.” —former CBS news anchor Scott Pelley, following the attempted assassination of Rep. Steve Scalise and other Republicans by Bernie Sanders volunteer James Hodgkinson during practice for the annual congressional baseball game

“If you see anybody from [Trump’s] Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd! And you push back on them! And you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere!” —Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA)

“We should rip Barron Trump from his mother’s arms and put him in a cage with pedophiles. … We should hack the system get the address of the ICE agents the CPB agents and surround their homes in protest. We should find out what schools their children go to and surround their schools in protest.” —Peter Fonda

“Around two dozen threat reports were issued in the past few days, primarily against Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers. … Each of these reports is generally related to a specific online threat. All employees are personally contacted by DHS security if they are the target of a violent threat. … In one example, a senior DHS official living in the Washington, DC, area found a burnt and decapitated animal on his front porch” —ABC Radio

“If you see these people in public, you should remind them that they shouldn’t have peace.” —DOJ paralegal Allison Hrabar, who joined the mob of fellow Democratic Socialists of America that surrounded Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen while she dined at a Mexican restaurant

“I would have done the same thing again,” stated Stephanie Wilkinson, the owner of the Red Hen restaurant who asked White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders to leave. Wilkinson reportedly organized a mob to follow Sanders and her family to another restaurant and continue berating them. CNN’s Symone Sanders endorsed the actions, insisting people “calling for civility need to check their privilege.”

“The leader of genius must have the ability to make different opponents appear as if they belonged to one category.”

“You know, to just be grossly generalistic, you could put half of Trump’s supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables. Right? The racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic — you name it. And unfortunately there are people like that. And he has lifted them up."—Hillary Clinton

"I always said about the Trump people, there’s two things they hate: being called a racist, and black people.” —Bill Maher

“We can no longer say Trump’s the bad guy. If you vote for Trump, you’re the bad guy. If you vote for Trump, you are ripping children from parents’ arms. … If you vote for Trump, then you, the voter — you, not Donald Trump — are standing at the border, like Nazis, going ‘you here, you here.’” —former CNBC talk show host Donny Deutsch

“[Trump supporters] cannot say, ‘Oh, I’m just supporting him because he’s giving them hell in Washington, DC. No, he’s been openly racist just like we said back in December of 2015 — openly racist. If you support him, then you’re supporting that, and you are that. It’s that simple.” —MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough

“Anybody who enables, anybody who votes for and supports a racist is a racist. You are culpable, white America, I’m sorry.” —Michael Moore

“Trump’s supporters are all poor to middle class, uneducated, lazy POS [pieces of s—t] that think he will magically grant them jobs for doing nothing.” —an unidentified FBI employee, according to the inspector general’s report

“Just went to a southern Virginia Walmart. I could SMELL the Trump support.” —FBI agent Peter Strzok

“It is not truth that matters, but victory.”

“In late May, before the uproar over the Trump administration’s family separations policy had reached fever pitch, several prominent journalists and activists tweeted disturbing photos published in the Arizona Republic from a facility that allegedly housed minors who had been wrenched from their parents. The pictures showed children, covered only in a thin layer of aluminum foil, sleeping in cages. … But there was one problem. The photos, it turned out, were from 2014, during the Obama administration’s second term.” —NY Magazine

“The original version of this story misstated what happened to the girl in the photo after she [was] taken from the scene. The girl was not carried away screaming by U.S. Border Patrol agents; her mother picked her up and the two were taken away together.” —correction issued by Time magazine following its cover photo of Trump and a crying child. Time editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal nonetheless insisted the misrepresentation “capture the stakes of this moment.” Later it was learned the mother had been previously deported in 2013.

“Now look, I know we’re not Nazi Germany. But there is a commonality there and a fear on my part that we have standards we have to live up to.” —former CIA Director Michael Hayden, defending his tweet containing a picture of Auschwitz with the caption “other governments have separated mothers and children”

“I believe today that my conduct is in accordance with the will of the almighty creator

"God is on OUR side!” —Maxine Waters

“If you win you need not have to explain. … If you lose, you should not be there to explain.”

“Do you think that being asked to leave a restaurant, or having your meal interrupted, or being called by the public is bad? My fascism-enabling friends, this is only the beginning.” —Splinter columnist Hamilton Nolan, who further insists that “when you aggressively f—k with people’s lives, you should not be surprised when they decide to f—k with yours.”

“I’m not a Republican and I don’t vote. But because I’ve been labeled as a Trump supporter … I’ve stopped appearing in public … because of the physical danger. … And I’m feeling like the best reason for Republicans to vote is they’re coming for you next. And they’re not hiding it. They’re coming for Trump right now, but they’re making it pretty clear they’re coming for Trump supporters next.” —Dilbert cartoonist Scott Adams

“First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out — Because I was not a Socialist. Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out — Because I was not a Trade Unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out — Because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me — and there was no one left to speak for me.” —Lutheran pastor Martin Niemöller

Final note: All of the italicized quotes in this column come from the same source: Adolf Hitler.



Neoliberalism: No regrets

Dr. Madsen Pirie writes from Britain:

Two years ago, in 2016, Prof Colin Talbot, Professor of Government at the University of Manchester, claimed that the term “Neoliberalism” was devoid of meaning. He was attacked by a ‘progressive’ student who demanded that he be disciplined by the university authorities. Talbot claimed that no-one admitted to being a neoliberal, and that it was now simply an all-purpose insult.

Cambridge took a lead with its debate in mid-June of 2018 on the motion, “This House Regrets Neoliberalism.” The Cambridge Union took the line that the term does in fact have meaning, and that it is something one can be for or against. The Adam Smith Institute is for it. Asked to speak at the end of a 2015 term-long seminar at Brighton University, I chose the title, “Looking at the World Through Neoliberal Eyes,” and subsequently had a T-shirt custom-made reading “Neoliberal and proud of It.”

The ASI’s executive director at the time, Sam Bowman, then published in 2016 an essay about what it meant to be a neoliberal. The ASI rebranded itself as “a neoliberal, free market think tank.” Far from regretting neoliberalism, the institute took pride in it, indulging in it, and trumpeting its virtues and achievements, and explained why it did so at every possible opportunity.

I am often asked at schools about the causes of poverty, and I reply that there are none. Unfortunately, poverty has been the condition of humankind for most of its 3 million-year existence. To ask its causes is like asking the causes of cold in the universe. It is the absence of heat or energy. Similarly, poverty is the absence of wealth. Wealth is the unusual condition that requires explanation. Poverty is what happens when there is no wealth, none of that unusual condition. It is wealth that requires explanation. I do not, of course, mean that poor people are poor because they do nothing. I mean they are poor because of the absence of that unusual condition, the one we should study, understand, and try to replicate as widely as possible.

A fundamental cause of wealth is the use of resources for investment instead of consumption. It is the deferment of present consumption in order to achieve future gain, the use of resources as capital. This is what financed the Industrial Revolution – the best thing that has ever happened to humanity. The addition of free markets and free trade ensured that the wealth created by the Industrial Revolution increased the living standards and the life chances of ordinary people. It led to cheaper food, medical advances, and it paid for such things as sanitation and education. It lifted humankind above subsistence and starvation, and onto that upward road that we have been climbing ever since.

This year marks an anniversary. In 1978 there came Star Wars, three popes, democracy in Spain, and the Sex pistols. But the most significant event of 40 years ago passed without notice at the time. In the village of Xiaogang in China, 18 farmers met at night in secret to sign a pact that divided the village’s collective land between them, allowing each family to keep a share of the proceeds they generated. They knew how risky this was, going against the ruling socialist ideology, and added a clause pledging to raise and educate the children of any exposed and executed. Their first harvest yielded more than the previous 5 years added together, and they were exposed by neighbouring villages.

Under Mao Zedong they would undoubtedly have been executed, but the paramount leader Deng Xiaoping was consolidating his power. He ordered that the experiment of the villagers be studied, and then replicated across China. So began the modernization of China. The approach was copied in India and other countries, and marked the beginning of the neoliberal hegemony.

Those who praise China’s “economic progress since 1949” are glibly glossing over the great socialist famines that killed 60 million people from starvation. The progress dates from 1978, not 1949, and it was the brave farmers of Xiaogang who led the way. It was not socialism but its abandonment, and the spread of neoliberal policies that paved the way to success.

Is this something we should regret? Not at all.

2 billion people were lifted out of subsistence and starvation

The average incomes of the world’s poor doubled in real terms
Life expectancy doubled

Deaths in childbirth and infancy became a fraction of what they had been

Access to sufficient food, healthcare and education reached unprecedented levels

Did it increase inequality? Yes, it did within countries. This always happens when countries embark on that upward road to growth and prosperity. Inequality increases at first, then levels off and subsequently declines. But inequality decreased between countries as poor countries vied to join the ranks of richer ones.

However, neoliberals think that absolute command of resources matters more. Access to enough food, healthcare and education is more important than the gap between rich and poor. Will there be food on the table on Friday? Do the children have a safe place to sleep? Can our parents get though winter? These things matter more than how far ahead rich people might be. Neoliberalism brings the greatest help to those who need it most – those on the bottom rung of society.

Should we regret what it has achieved? Absolutely not. We can be justly proud that we have discovered a formula that uplifts the common lot of humanity. Its achievements cannot be ignored, because they are real-world facts, not some fancy theory of what might happen. They did happen. Is neoliberalism the last word in economic progress? Probably not. It is essentially empirical. If something better comes along, it might well replace it.

But that is no reason to regret what it has achieved. It is the best system we have yet found to bring decent lives to ordinary people around the world. We should no more regret it than we should regret the Reformation, the Renaissance, the Enlightenment, or the Industrial Revolution.

We carried the torch for a time and we let its blaze light up the world. We should honour it and exult in its achievements, and reject emphatically any idea that we should regret it.



Leftmedia: Trump Caused Newspaper Attack

The murderer was motived by his own personal animosity. It had nothing to do with Trump

Five journalists who worked at the Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Maryland, were murdered Thursday when an individual with a longstanding grudge against the newspaper blasted his way into the building seeking revenge for a lost 2015 defamation lawsuit he had leveled against the paper. It was personal animus against that specific newspaper, not some generalized anti-media sentiments. Nevertheless, as news of the attack quickly spread across the country, once again leftists politicized the atrocity by blaming President Donald Trump.

The New York Times’ Maggie Haberman wrote, “What happened today is sickening. This alleged gunman appears to have had a longstanding grudge against the paper and little else is known so far. But Trump is the only president in memory to call the press ‘the enemy of the people.’”

Reuters’ Rob Cox went further, angrily pontificating, “This is what happens when [Donald Trump] calls journalists the enemy of the people. Blood is on your hands, Mr. President. Save your thoughts and prayers for your empty soul.” Others joined in with similar memes.“

The Federalist’s Mollie Hemingway observed, "We also didn’t see [the MSM] wonder if the media’s harsh treatment of Republicans led to the mass assassination attempt on a baseball field filled with Republican senators and members of Congress last June. They also didn’t wonder if anti-police rhetoric led to the targeted murders of various policemen in recent years. The blame game seems to work one way with traditional media sources.”

Is it any wonder that 72% of Americans think the MSM intentionally reports misleading news?



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

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Postings from Brisbane, Australia by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.) -- former member of the Australia-Soviet Friendship Society, former anarcho-capitalist and former member of the British Conservative party. And now a "Deplorable"

When it comes to political incorrectness, I hit the trifecta. I talk about race, IQ and social class. I have an academic background in all three subjects but that wins me no forgiveness

At its most basic psychological level, conservatives are the contented people and Leftists are the discontented people. And both are largely dispositional, inborn -- which is why they so rarely change

As a good academic, I first define my terms: A Leftist is a person who is so dissatisfied with the way things naturally are that he/she is prepared to use force to make people behave in ways that they otherwise would not.

So an essential feature of Leftism is that they think they have the right to tell other people what to do

Leftists are the disgruntled folk. They see things in the world that are not ideal and conclude therefore that they have the right to change those things by force. Conservative explanations of why things are not ideal -- and never can be -- fall on deaf ears

Leftists aim to deliver dismay and disruption into other people's lives -- and they are good at achieving that.

Leftists are wolfs in sheep's clothing

Liberals are people who don't believe in liberty

German has a word that describes most Leftists well: "Scheinheilig" - A person who appears to be very kind, soft natured, and filled with pure goodness but behind the facade, has a vile nature. He is seemingly holy but is an unscrupulous person on the inside.

The new faith is very oppressive: Leftist orthodoxy is the new dominant religion of the Western world and it is every bit as bigoted and oppressive as Christianity was at its worst

There are two varieties of authoritarian Leftism. Fascists are soft Leftists, preaching one big happy family -- "Better together" in other words. Communists are hard Leftists, preaching class war.

Equality: The nonsensical and incoherent claim that underlies so much Leftist discourse is "all men are equal". And that is the envier's gospel. It makes not a scrap of sense and shows no contact with reality but it is something that enviers resort to as a way of soothing their envious feelings. They deny the very differences that give them so much heartburn. "Denial" was long ago identified by Freud as a maladaptive psychological defence mechanism and "All men are equal" is a prize example of that. Whatever one thinks of his theories, Freud was undoubtedly an acute observer of people and very few psychologists today would doubt the maladaptive nature of denial as described by Freud.

Socialism is the most evil malady ever to afflict the human brain. The death toll in WWII alone tells you that

You do still occasionally see some mention of the old idea that Leftist parties represent the worker. In the case of the U.S. Democrats that is long gone. Now they want to REFORM the worker. No wonder most working class Americans these days vote Republican. Democrats are the party of the minorities and the smug

We live in a country where the people own the Government and not in a country where the Government owns the people -- Churchill

The Left have a lot in common with tortoises. They have a thick mental shell that protects them from the reality of the world about them

Definition of a Socialist: Someone who wants everything you have...except your job.

Let's start with some thought-provoking graphics

Israel: A great powerhouse of the human spirit

The difference in practice

The United Nations: A great ideal but a sordid reality

Alfred Dreyfus, a reminder of French antisemitism still relevant today

Eugenio Pacelli, a righteous Gentile, a true man of God and a brilliant Pope

Leftism in one picture:

The "steamroller" above who got steamrollered by his own hubris. Spitzer is a warning of how self-destructive a vast ego can be -- and also of how destructive of others it can be.

R.I.P. Augusto Pinochet. Pinochet deposed a law-defying Marxist President at the express and desperate invitation of the Chilean parliament. Allende had just burnt the electoral rolls so it wasn't hard to see what was coming. Pinochet pioneered the free-market reforms which Reagan and Thatcher later unleashed to world-changing effect. That he used far-Leftist methods to suppress far-Leftist violence is reasonable if not ideal. The Leftist view that they should have a monopoly of violence and that others should follow the law is a total absurdity which shows only that their hate overcomes their reason

Leftist writers usually seem quite reasonable and persuasive at first glance. The problem is not what they say but what they don't say. Leftist beliefs are so counterfactual ("all men are equal", "all men are brothers" etc.) that to be a Leftist you have to have a talent for blotting out from your mind facts that don't suit you. And that is what you see in Leftist writing: A very selective view of reality. Facts that disrupt a Leftist story are simply ignored. Leftist writing is cherrypicking on a grand scale

So if ever you read something written by a Leftist that sounds totally reasonable, you have an urgent need to find out what other people say on that topic. The Leftist will almost certainly have told only half the story

We conservatives have the facts on our side, which is why Leftists never want to debate us and do their best to shut us up. It's very revealing the way they go to great lengths to suppress conservative speech at universities. Universities should be where the best and brightest Leftists are to be found but even they cannot stand the intellectual challenge that conservatism poses for them. It is clearly a great threat to them. If what we say were ridiculous or wrong, they would grab every opportunity to let us know it

A conservative does not hanker after the new; He hankers after the good. Leftists hanker after the untested

Just one thing is sufficient to tell all and sundry what an unamerican lamebrain Obama is. He pronounced an army corps as an army "corpse" Link here. Can you imagine any previous American president doing that? Many were men with significant personal experience in the armed forces in their youth.

A favorite Leftist saying sums up the whole of Leftism: "To make an omelette, you've got to break eggs". They want to change some state of affairs and don't care who or what they destroy or damage in the process. They think their alleged good intentions are sufficient to absolve them from all blame for even the most evil deeds

In practical politics, the art of Leftism is to sound good while proposing something destructive

Leftists are the "we know best" people, meaning that they are intrinsically arrogant. Matthew chapter 6 would not be for them. And arrogance leads directly into authoritarianism

Leftism is fundamentally authoritarian. Whether by revolution or by legislation, Leftists aim to change what people can and must do. When in 2008 Obama said that he wanted to "fundamentally transform" America, he was not talking about America's geography or topography but rather about American people. He wanted them to stop doing things that they wanted to do and make them do things that they did not want to do. Can you get a better definition of authoritarianism than that?

And note that an American President is elected to administer the law, not make it. That seems to have escaped Mr Obama

That Leftism is intrinsically authoritarian is not a new insight. It was well understood by none other than Friedrich Engels (Yes. THAT Engels). His clever short essay On authority was written as a reproof to the dreamy Anarchist Left of his day. It concludes: "A revolution is certainly the most authoritarian thing there is; it is the act whereby one part of the population imposes its will upon the other part by means of rifles, bayonets and cannon — authoritarian means"

Inside Every Liberal is a Totalitarian Screaming to Get Out

Insight: "A man's admiration for absolute government is proportionate to the contempt he feels for those around him." —Alexis de Tocqueville (1805-1859)

Leftists think of themselves as the new nobility

Many people in literary and academic circles today who once supported Stalin and his heirs are generally held blameless and may even still be admired whereas anybody who gave the slightest hint of support for the similarly brutal Hitler regime is an utter polecat and pariah. Why? Because Hitler's enemies were "only" the Jews whereas Stalin's enemies were those the modern day Left still hates -- people who are doing well for themselves materially. Modern day Leftists understand and excuse Stalin and his supporters because Stalin's hates are their hates.

Hatred has long been a central pillar of leftist ideologies, premised as they are on trampling individual rights for the sake of a collectivist plan. Karl Marx boasted that he was “the greatest hater of the so-called positive.” In 1923, V.I. Lenin chillingly declared to the Soviet Commissars of Education, “We must teach our children to hate. Hatred is the basis of communism.” In his tract “Left-Wing Communism,” Lenin went so far as to assert that hatred was “the basis of every socialist and Communist movement.”

If you understand that Leftism is hate, everything falls into place.

The strongest way of influencing people is to convince them that you will do them some good. Leftists and con-men misuse that

Leftists believe only what they want to believe. So presenting evidence contradicting their beliefs simply enrages them. They do not learn from it

Psychological defence mechanisms such as projection play a large part in Leftist thinking and discourse. So their frantic search for evil in the words and deeds of others is easily understandable. The evil is in themselves.

Leftists who think that they can conjure up paradise out of their own limited brains are simply fools -- arrogant and dangerous fools. They essentially know nothing. Conservatives learn from the thousands of years of human brains that have preceded us -- including the Bible, the ancient Greeks and much else. The death of Socrates is, for instance, an amazing prefiguration of the intolerant 21st century. Ask any conservative stranded in academe about his freedom of speech

Thomas Sowell: “There are no solutions, only trade-offs.” Leftists don't understand that -- which is a major factor behind their simplistic thinking. They just never see the trade-offs. But implementing any Leftist idea will hit us all with the trade-offs

Chesteron's fence -- good conservative thinking

"The best laid plans of mice and men gang aft agley"[go oft astray] is a well known line from a famous poem by the great Scottish poet, Robert Burns. But the next line is even wiser: "And leave us nought but grief and pain for promised joy". Burns was a Leftist of sorts so he knew how often their theories fail badly.

Mostly, luck happens when opportunity meets preparation.

Most Leftist claims are simply propaganda. Those who utter such claims must know that they are not telling the whole story. Hitler described his Marxist adversaries as "lying with a virtuosity that would bend iron beams". At the risk of ad hominem shrieks, I think that image is too good to remain disused.

Conservatives adapt to the world they live in. Leftists want to change the world to suit themselves

Given their dislike of the world they live in, it would be a surprise if Leftists were patriotic and loved their own people. Prominent English Leftist politician Jack Straw probably said it best: "The English as a race are not worth saving"

In his 1888 book, The Anti-Christ Friedrich Nietzsche argues that we should treat the common man well and kindly because he is the backdrop against which the exceptional man can be seen. So Nietzsche deplores those who agitate the common man: "Whom do I hate most among the rabble of today? The socialist rabble, the chandala [outcast] apostles, who undermine the instinct, the pleasure, the worker's sense of satisfaction with his small existence—who make him envious, who teach him revenge. The source of wrong is never unequal rights but the claim of “equal” rights"

Why do conservatives respect tradition and rely on the past in many ways? Because they want to know what works and the past is the chief source of evidence on that. Leftists are more faith-based. They cling to their theories (e.g. global warming) with religious fervour, even though theories are often wrong

Thinking that you "know best" is an intrinsically precarious and foolish stance -- because nobody does. Reality is so complex and unpredictable that it can rarely be predicted far ahead. Conservatives can see that and that is why conservatives always want change to be done gradually, in a step by step way. So the Leftist often finds the things he "knows" to be out of step with reality, which challenges him and his ego. Sadly, rather than abandoning the things he "knows", he usually resorts to psychological defence mechanisms such as denial and projection. He is largely impervious to argument because he has to be. He can't afford to let reality in.

A prize example of the Leftist tendency to projection (seeing your own faults in others) is the absurd Robert "Bob" Altemeyer, an acclaimed psychologist and father of a Canadian Leftist politician. Altemeyer claims that there is no such thing as Leftist authoritarianism and that it is conservatives who are "Enemies of Freedom". That Leftists (e.g. Mrs Obama) are such enemies of freedom that they even want to dictate what people eat has apparently passed Altemeyer by. Even Stalin did not go that far. And there is the little fact that all the great authoritarian regimes of the 20th century (Stalin, Hitler and Mao) were socialist. Freud saw reliance on defence mechanisms such as projection as being maladjusted. It is difficult to dispute that. Altemeyer is too illiterate to realize it but he is actually a good Hegelian. Hegel thought that "true" freedom was marching in step with a Left-led herd.

What libertarian said this? “The bureaucracy is a parasite on the body of society, a parasite which ‘chokes’ all its vital pores…The state is a parasitic organism”. It was VI Lenin, in August 1917, before he set up his own vastly bureaucratic state. He could see the problem but had no clue about how to solve it.

It was Democrat John F Kennedy who cut taxes and declared that “a rising tide lifts all boats"

Leftist stupidity is a special class of stupidity. The people concerned are mostly not stupid in general but they have a character defect (mostly arrogance) that makes them impatient with complexity and unwilling to study it. So in their policies they repeatedly shoot themselves in the foot; They fail to attain their objectives. The world IS complex so a simplistic approach to it CANNOT work.

Seminal Leftist philosopher, G.W.F. Hegel said something that certainly applies to his fellow Leftists: "We learn from history that we do not learn from history". And he captured the Left in this saying too: "Evil resides in the very gaze which perceives Evil all around itself".

"A man who is not a socialist at age 20 has no heart; A man who is still a socialist at age 30 has no head". Who said that? Most people attribute it to Winston but as far as I can tell it was first said by Georges Clemenceau, French Premier in WWI -- whose own career approximated the transition concerned. And he in turn was probably updating an earlier saying about monarchy versus Republicanism by Guizot. Other attributions here. There is in fact a normal drift from Left to Right as people get older. Both Reagan and Churchill started out as liberals

Funny how to the Leftist intelligentsia poor blacks are 'oppressed' and poor whites are 'trash'. Racism, anyone?

MESSAGE to Leftists: Even if you killed all conservatives tomorrow, you would just end up in another Soviet Union. Conservatives are all that stand between you and that dismal fate. And you may not even survive at all. Stalin killed off all the old Bolsheviks.

A Conservative manifesto from England -- The inimitable Jacob Rees-Mogg


The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialist) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party" (In German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei)

Just the name of Hitler's political party should be sufficient to reject the claim that Hitler was "Right wing" but Leftists sometimes retort that the name "Democratic People's Republic of Korea" is not informative, in that it is the name of a dismal Stalinist tyranny. But "People's Republic" is a normal name for a Communist country whereas I know of no conservative political party that calls itself a "Socialist Worker's Party". Such parties are in fact usually of the extreme Left (Trotskyite etc.)

Most people find the viciousness of the Nazis to be incomprehensible -- for instance what they did in their concentration camps. But you just have to read a little of the vileness that pours out from modern-day "liberals" in their Twitter and blog comments to understand it all very well. Leftists haven't changed. They are still boiling with hate

Hatred as a motivating force for political strategy leads to misguided ­decisions. “Hatred is blind,” as Alexandre Dumas warned, “rage carries you away; and he who pours out vengeance runs the risk of tasting a bitter draught.”

Who said this in 1968? "I am not, and never have been, a man of the right. My position was on the Left and is now in the centre of politics". It was Sir Oswald Mosley, founder and leader of the British Union of Fascists

The term "Fascism" is mostly used by the Left as a brainless term of abuse. But when they do make a serious attempt to define it, they produce very complex and elaborate definitions -- e.g. here and here. In fact, Fascism is simply extreme socialism plus nationalism. But great gyrations are needed to avoid mentioning the first part of that recipe, of course.

Three examples of Leftist racism below (much more here and here):

Jesse Owens, the African-American hero of the 1936 Berlin Olympic Games, said "Hitler didn't snub me – it was our president who snubbed me. The president didn't even send me a telegram." Democrat Franklin D. Roosevelt never even invited the quadruple gold medal-winner to the White House

Beatrice Webb, a founder of the London School of Economics and the Fabian Society, and married to a Labour MP, mused in 1922 on whether when English children were "dying from lack of milk", one should extend "the charitable impulse" to Russian and Chinese children who, if saved this year, might anyway die next. Besides, she continued, there was "the larger question of whether those races are desirable inhabitants" and "obviously" one wouldn't "spend one's available income" on "a Central African negro".

Hugh Dalton, offered the Colonial Office during Attlee's 1945-51 Labour government, turned it down because "I had a horrid vision of pullulating, poverty stricken, diseased nigger communities, for whom one can do nothing in the short run and who, the more one tries to help them, are querulous and ungrateful."

The Zimmerman case is an excellent proof that the Left is deep-down racist

Defensible and indefensible usages of the term "racism"

The book, The authoritarian personality, authored by T.W. Adorno et al. in 1950, has been massively popular among psychologists. It claims that a set of ideas that were popular in the "Progressive"-dominated America of the prewar era were "authoritarian". Leftist regimes always are authoritarian so that claim was not a big problem. What was quite amazing however is that Adorno et al. identified such ideas as "conservative". They were in fact simply popular ideas of the day but ones that had been most heavily promoted by the Left right up until the then-recent WWII. See here for details of prewar "Progressive" thinking.

Leftist psychologists have an amusingly simplistic conception of military organizations and military men. They seem to base it on occasions they have seen troops marching together on parade rather than any real knowledge of military men and the military life. They think that military men are "rigid" -- automatons who are unable to adjust to new challenges or think for themselves. What is incomprehensible to them is that being kadaver gehorsam (to use the extreme Prussian term for following orders) actually requires great flexibility -- enough flexibility to put your own ideas and wishes aside and do something very difficult. Ask any soldier if all commands are easy to obey.

It would be very easy for me to say that I am too much of an individual for the army but I did in fact join the army and enjoy it greatly, as most men do. In my observation, ALL army men are individuals. It is just that they accept discipline in order to be militarily efficient -- which is the whole point of the exercise. But that's too complex for simplistic Leftist thinking, of course

Franklin Delano Roosevelt was a war criminal. Both British and American codebreakers had cracked the Japanese naval code so FDR knew what was coming at Pearl Harbor. But for his own political reasons he warned no-one there. So responsibility for the civilian and military deaths at Pearl Harbor lies with FDR as well as with the Japanese. The huge firepower available at Pearl Harbor, both aboard ship and on land, could have largely neutered the attack. Can you imagine 8 battleships and various lesser craft firing all their AA batteries as the Japanese came in? The Japanese naval airforce would have been annihilated and the war would have been over before it began.

FDR prolonged the Depression. He certainly didn't cure it.

WWII did NOT end the Great Depression. It just concealed it. It in fact made living standards worse

FDR appointed a known KKK member, Hugo Black, to the Supreme Court

Joe McCarthy was eventually proved right after the fall of the Soviet Union. To accuse anyone of McCarthyism is to accuse them of accuracy!

The KKK was intimately associated with the Democratic party. They ATTACKED Republicans!

High Level of Welfare Use by Legal and Illegal Immigrants in the USA. Low skill immigrants receive 4 to 5 dollars of benefits for every dollar in taxes paid

People who mention differences in black vs. white IQ are these days almost universally howled down and subjected to the most extreme abuse. I am a psychometrician, however, so I feel obliged to defend the scientific truth of the matter: The average African adult has about the same IQ as an average white 11-year-old and African Americans (who are partly white in ancestry) average out at a mental age of 14. The American Psychological Association is generally Left-leaning but it is the world's most prestigious body of academic psychologists. And even they have had to concede that sort of gap (one SD) in black vs. white average IQ. 11-year olds can do a lot of things but they also have their limits and there are times when such limits need to be allowed for.

The association between high IQ and long life is overwhelmingly genetic: "In the combined sample the genetic contribution to the covariance was 95%"

The Dark Ages were not dark

Judged by his deeds, Abraham Lincoln was one of the bloodiest villains ever to walk the Earth. See here. And: America's uncivil war was caused by trade protectionism. The slavery issue was just camouflage, as Abraham Lincoln himself admitted. See also here

At the beginning of the North/South War, Confederate general Robert E. Lee did not own any slaves. Union General Ulysses L. Grant did.

Was slavery already washed up by the tides of history before Lincoln took it on? Eric Williams in his book "Capitalism and Slavery" tells us: “The commercial capitalism of the eighteenth century developed the wealth of Europe by means of slavery and monopoly. But in so doing it helped to create the industrial capitalism of the nineteenth century, which turned round and destroyed the power of commercial capitalism, slavery, and all its works. Without a grasp of these economic changes the history of the period is meaningless.”

Did William Zantzinger kill poor Hattie Carroll?

Did Bismarck predict where WWI would start or was it just a "free" translation by Churchill?

Conrad Black on the Declaration of Independence

Malcolm Gladwell: "There is more of reality and wisdom in a Chinese fortune cookie than can be found anywhere in Gladwell’s pages"

Some people are born bad -- confirmed by genetics research

The dark side of American exceptionalism: America could well be seen as the land of folly. It fought two unnecessary civil wars, would have done well to keep out of two world wars, endured the extraordinary folly of Prohibition and twice elected a traitor President -- Barack Obama. That America remains a good place to be is a tribute to the energy and hard work of individual Americans.

“From the fact that people are very different it follows that, if we treat them equally, the result must be inequality in their actual position, and that the only way to place them in an equal position would be to treat them differently. Equality before the law and material equality are therefore not only different but are in conflict with each other; and we can achieve either one or the other, but not both at the same time.” ― Friedrich Hayek, The Constitution Of Liberty


The 10 "cannots" (By William J. H. Boetcker) that Leftist politicians ignore:
*You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.
* You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
* You cannot help little men by tearing down big men.
* You cannot lift the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.
* You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich.
* You cannot establish sound security on borrowed money.
* You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred.
* You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than you earn.
* You cannot build character and courage by destroying men's initiative and independence.
* And you cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they can and should do for themselves.

A good short definition of conservative: "One who wants you to keep your hand out of his pocket."

Beware of good intentions. They mostly lead to coercion

A gargantuan case of hubris, coupled with stunning level of ignorance about how the real world works, is the essence of progressivism.

The U.S. Constitution is neither "living" nor dead. It is fixed until it is amended. But amending it is the privilege of the people, not of politicians or judges

It is hard to imagine a more stupid or more dangerous way of making decisions than by putting those decisions in the hands of people who pay no price for being wrong - Thomas Sowell

Leftists think that utopia can be coerced into existence -- so no dishonesty or brutality is beyond them in pursuit of that "noble" goal

"England is perhaps the only great country whose intellectuals are ashamed of their own nationality. In left-wing circles it is always felt that there is something slightly disgraceful in being an Englishman and that it is a duty to snigger at every English institution" -- George Orwell

Was 16th century science pioneer Paracelsus a libertarian? His motto was "Alterius non sit qui suus esse potest" which means "Let no man belong to another who can belong to himself."

"When using today's model of society as a rule, most of history will be found to be full of oppression, bias, and bigotry." What today's arrogant judges of history fail to realize is that they, too, will be judged. What will Americans of 100 years from now make of, say, speech codes, political correctness, and zero tolerance - to name only three? Assuming, of course, there will still be an America that we, today, would recognize. Given the rogue Federal government spy apparatus, I am not at all sure of that. -- Paul Havemann

Economist Ludwig von Mises (1881-1973): "The champions of socialism call themselves progressives, but they recommend a system which is characterized by rigid observance of routine and by a resistance to every kind of improvement. They call themselves liberals, but they are intent upon abolishing liberty. They call themselves democrats, but they yearn for dictatorship. They call themselves revolutionaries, but they want to make the government omnipotent. They promise the blessings of the Garden of Eden, but they plan to transform the world into a gigantic post office."

It's the shared hatred of the rest of us that unites Islamists and the Left.

American liberals don't love America. They despise it. All they love is their own fantasy of what America could become. They are false patriots.

The Democratic Party: Con-men elected by the ignorant and the arrogant

The Democratic Party is a strange amalgam of elites, would-be elites and minorities. No wonder their policies are so confused and irrational

Why are conservatives more at ease with religion? Because it is basic to conservatism that some things are unknowable, and religious people have to accept that too. Leftists think that they know it all and feel threatened by any exceptions to that. Thinking that you know it all is however the pride that comes before a fall.

The characteristic emotion of the Leftist is not envy. It's rage

Leftists are committed to grievance, not truth

The British Left poured out a torrent of hate for Margaret Thatcher on the occasion of her death. She rescued Britain from chaos and restored Britain's prosperity. What's not to hate about that?

Something you didn't know about Margaret Thatcher

The world's dumbest investor? Without doubt it is Uncle Sam. Nobody anywhere could rival the scale of the losses on "investments" made under the Obama administration

"Behind the honeyed but patently absurd pleas for equality is a ruthless drive for placing themselves (the elites) at the top of a new hierarchy of power" -- Murray Rothbard - Egalitarianism and the Elites (1995)

A liberal is someone who feels a great debt to his fellow man, which debt he proposes to pay off with your money. -- G. Gordon Liddy

"World socialism as a whole, and all the figures associated with it, are shrouded in legend; its contradictions are forgotten or concealed; it does not respond to arguments but continually ignores them--all this stems from the mist of irrationality that surrounds socialism and from its instinctive aversion to scientific analysis... The doctrines of socialism seethe with contradictions, its theories are at constant odds with its practice, yet due to a powerful instinct these contradictions do not in the least hinder the unending propaganda of socialism. Indeed, no precise, distinct socialism even exists; instead there is only a vague, rosy notion of something noble and good, of equality, communal ownership, and justice: the advent of these things will bring instant euphoria and a social order beyond reproach." -- Solzhenitsyn

"The heart of the wise inclines to the right, but the heart of the fool to the left." -- Ecclesiastes 10:2 (NIV)

My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government. -- Thomas Jefferson

"Much that passes as idealism is disguised hatred or disguised love of power" -- Bertrand Russell

Evan Sayet: The Left sides "...invariably with evil over good, wrong over right, and the behaviors that lead to failure over those that lead to success." (t=5:35+ on video)

The Republicans are the gracious side of American politics. It is the Democrats who are the nasty party, the haters

Wanting to stay out of the quarrels of other nations is conservative -- but conservatives will fight if attacked or seriously endangered. Anglo/Irish statesman Lord Castlereagh (1769-1822), who led the political coalition that defeated Napoleon, was an isolationist, as were traditional American conservatives.

Some wisdom from the past: "The bosom of America is open to receive not only the opulent and respectable stranger, but the oppressed and persecuted of all nations and religions; whom we shall welcome to a participation of all our rights and privileges, if by decency and propriety of conduct they appear to merit the enjoyment." —George Washington, 1783

Some useful definitions:

If a conservative doesn't like guns, he doesn't buy one. If a liberal doesn't like guns, he wants all guns outlawed.
If a conservative is a vegetarian, he doesn't eat meat. If a liberal is a vegetarian, he wants all meat products banned for everyone.
If a conservative is down-and-out, he thinks about how to better his situation. A liberal wonders who is going to take care of him.
If a conservative doesn't like a talk show host, he switches channels. Liberals demand that those they don't like be shut down.
If a conservative is a non-believer, he doesn't go to church. A liberal non-believer wants any mention of God and religion silenced. (Unless it's a foreign religion, of course!)
If a conservative decides he needs health care, he goes about shopping for it, or may choose a job that provides it. A liberal demands that the rest of us pay for his.

There is better evidence for creation than there is for the Leftist claim that “gender” is a “social construct”. Most Leftist claims seem to be faith-based rather than founded on the facts

Leftists are classic weak characters. They dish out abuse by the bucketload but cannot take it when they get it back. Witness the Loughner hysteria.

Death taxes: You would expect a conscientious person, of whatever degree of intelligence, to reflect on the strange contradiction involved in denying people the right to unearned wealth, while supporting programs that give people unearned wealth.

America is no longer the land of the free. It is now the land of the regulated -- though it is not alone in that, of course

The Leftist motto: "I love humanity. It's just people I can't stand"

Why are Leftists always talking about hate? Because it fills their own hearts

Envy is a strong and widespread human emotion so there has alway been widespread support for policies of economic "levelling". Both the USA and the modern-day State of Israel were founded by communists but reality taught both societies that respect for the individual gave much better outcomes than levelling ideas. Sadly, there are many people in both societies in whom hatred for others is so strong that they are incapable of respect for the individual. The destructiveness of what they support causes them to call themselves many names in different times and places but they are the backbone of the political Left

Gore Vidal: "Every time a friend succeeds, I die a little". Vidal was of course a Leftist

The large number of rich Leftists suggests that, for them, envy is secondary. They are directly driven by hatred and scorn for many of the other people that they see about them. Hatred of others can be rooted in many things, not only in envy. But the haters come together as the Left. Some evidence here showing that envy is not what defines the Left

Leftists hate the world around them and want to change it: the people in it most particularly. Conservatives just want to be left alone to make their own decisions and follow their own values.

The failure of the Soviet experiment has definitely made the American Left more vicious and hate-filled than they were. The plain failure of what passed for ideas among them has enraged rather than humbled them.

Ronald Reagan famously observed that the status quo is Latin for “the mess we’re in.” So much for the vacant Leftist claim that conservatives are simply defenders of the status quo. They think that conservatives are as lacking in principles as they are.

Was Confucius a conservative? The following saying would seem to reflect good conservative caution: "The superior man, when resting in safety, does not forget that danger may come. When in a state of security he does not forget the possibility of ruin. When all is orderly, he does not forget that disorder may come. Thus his person is not endangered, and his States and all their clans are preserved."

The shallow thinkers of the Left sometimes claim that conservatives want to impose their own will on others in the matter of abortion. To make that claim is however to confuse religion with politics. Conservatives are in fact divided about their response to abortion. The REAL opposition to abortion is religious rather than political. And the church which has historically tended to support the LEFT -- the Roman Catholic church -- is the most fervent in the anti-abortion cause. Conservatives are indeed the one side of politics to have moral qualms on the issue but they tend to seek a middle road in dealing with it. Taking the issue to the point of legal prohibitions is a religious doctrine rather than a conservative one -- and the religion concerned may or may not be characteristically conservative. More on that here

Some Leftist hatred arises from the fact that they blame "society" for their own personal problems and inadequacies

The Leftist hunger for change to the society that they hate leads to a hunger for control over other people. And they will do and say anything to get that control: "Power at any price". Leftist politicians are mostly self-aggrandizing crooks who gain power by deceiving the uninformed with snake-oil promises -- power which they invariably use to destroy. Destruction is all that they are good at. Destruction is what haters do.

Leftists are consistent only in their hate. They don't have principles. How can they when "there is no such thing as right and wrong"? All they have is postures, pretend-principles that can be changed as easily as one changes one's shirt

A Leftist assumption: Making money doesn't entitle you to it, but wanting money does.

"Politicians never accuse you of 'greed' for wanting other people's money -- only for wanting to keep your own money." --columnist Joe Sobran (1946-2010)

Leftist policies are candy-coated rat poison that may appear appealing at first, but inevitably do a lot of damage to everyone impacted by them.

A tribute and thanks to Mary Jo Kopechne. Her death was reprehensible but she probably did more by her death that she ever would have in life: She spared the world a President Ted Kennedy. That the heap of corruption that was Ted Kennedy died peacefully in his bed is one of the clearest demonstrations that we do not live in a just world. Even Joe Stalin seems to have been smothered to death by Nikita Khrushchev

I often wonder why Leftists refer to conservatives as "wingnuts". A wingnut is a very useful device that adds versatility wherever it is used. Clearly, Leftists are not even good at abuse. Once they have accused their opponents of racism and Nazism, their cupboard is bare. Similarly, Leftists seem to think it is a devastating critique to refer to "Worldnet Daily" as "Worldnut Daily". The poverty of their argumentation is truly pitiful

The Leftist assertion that there is no such thing as right and wrong has a distinguished history. It was Pontius Pilate who said "What is truth?" (John 18:38). From a Christian viewpoint, the assertion is undoubtedly the Devil's gospel

Even in the Old Testament they knew about "Postmodernism": "Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!" - Isaiah 5:20 (KJV)

Was Solomon the first conservative? "The hearts of men are full of evil and madness is in their hearts" -- Ecclesiastes: 9:3 (RSV). He could almost have been talking about Global Warming.

Leftist hatred of Christianity goes back as far as the massacre of the Carmelite nuns during the French revolution. Yancey has written a whole book tabulating modern Leftist hatred of Christians. It is a rival religion to Leftism.

"If one rejects laissez faire on account of man's fallibility and moral weakness, one must for the same reason also reject every kind of government action." - Ludwig von Mises

The naive scholar who searches for a consistent Leftist program will not find it. What there is consists only in the negation of the present.

Because of their need to be different from the mainstream, Leftists are very good at pretending that sow's ears are silk purses

Among intelligent people, Leftism is a character defect. Leftists HATE success in others -- which is why notably successful societies such as the USA and Israel are hated and failures such as the Palestinians can do no wrong.

A Leftist's beliefs are all designed to pander to his ego. So when you have an argument with a Leftist, you are not really discussing the facts. You are threatening his self esteem. Which is why the normal Leftist response to challenge is mere abuse.

Because of the fragility of a Leftist's ego, anything that threatens it is intolerable and provokes rage. So most Leftist blogs can be summarized in one sentence: "How DARE anybody question what I believe!". Rage and abuse substitute for an appeal to facts and reason.

Because their beliefs serve their ego rather than reality, Leftists just KNOW what is good for us. Conservatives need evidence.

Absolute certainty is the privilege of uneducated men and fanatics. -- C.J. Keyser

Hell is paved with good intentions" -- Boswell's Life of Johnson of 1775

"Almost all professors of the arts and sciences are egregiously conceited, and derive their happiness from their conceit" -- Erasmus


"Seest thou a man wise in his own conceit? there is more hope of a fool than of him" (Proverbs 26: 12). I think that sums up Leftists pretty well.

Eminent British astrophysicist Sir Arthur Stanley Eddington is often quoted as saying: "Not only is the universe stranger than we imagine, it is stranger than we can imagine." It was probably in fact said by his contemporary, J.B.S. Haldane. But regardless of authorship, it could well be a conservative credo not only about the cosmos but also about human beings and human society. Mankind is too complex to be summed up by simple rules and even complex rules are only approximations with many exceptions.

Politics is the only thing Leftists know about. They know nothing of economics, history or business. Their only expertise is in promoting feelings of grievance

Socialism makes the individual the slave of the state -- capitalism frees them.

Many readers here will have noticed that what I say about Leftists sometimes sounds reminiscent of what Leftists say about conservatives. There is an excellent reason for that. Leftists are great "projectors" (people who see their own faults in others). So a good first step in finding out what is true of Leftists is to look at what they say about conservatives! They even accuse conservatives of projection (of course).

The research shows clearly that one's Left/Right stance is strongly genetically inherited but nobody knows just what specifically is inherited. What is inherited that makes people Leftist or Rightist? There is any amount of evidence that personality traits are strongly genetically inherited so my proposal is that hard-core Leftists are people who tend to let their emotions (including hatred and envy) run away with them and who are much more in need of seeing themselves as better than others -- two attributes that are probably related to one another. Such Leftists may be an evolutionary leftover from a more primitive past.

Leftists seem to believe that if someone like Al Gore says it, it must be right. They obviously have a strong need for an authority figure. The fact that the two most authoritarian regimes of the 20th century (Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia) were socialist is thus no surprise. Leftists often accuse conservatives of being "authoritarian" but that is just part of their usual "projective" strategy -- seeing in others what is really true of themselves.

"With their infernal racial set-asides, racial quotas, and race norming, liberals share many of the Klan's premises. The Klan sees the world in terms of race and ethnicity. So do liberals! Indeed, liberals and white supremacists are the only people left in America who are neurotically obsessed with race. Conservatives champion a color-blind society" -- Ann Coulter

Politicians are in general only a little above average in intelligence so the idea that they can make better decisions for us that we can make ourselves is laughable

A quote from the late Dr. Adrian Rogers: "You cannot legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the wealthy out of freedom. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving. The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does not first take from somebody else. When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that my dear friend, is about the end of any nation. You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it."

The Supreme Court of the United States is now and always has been a judicial abomination. Its guiding principles have always been political rather than judicial. It is not as political as Stalin's courts but its respect for the constitution is little better. Some recent abuses: The "equal treatment" provision of the 14th amendment was specifically written to outlaw racial discrimination yet the court has allowed various forms of "affirmative action" for decades -- when all such policies should have been completely stuck down immediately. The 2nd. amendment says that the right to bear arms shall not be infringed yet gun control laws infringe it in every State in the union. The 1st amendment provides that speech shall be freely exercised yet the court has upheld various restrictions on the financing and display of political advertising. The court has found a right to abortion in the constitution when the word abortion is not even mentioned there. The court invents rights that do not exist and denies rights that do.

"Some action that is unconstitutional has much to recommend it" -- Elena Kagan, nominated to SCOTUS by Obama

Frank Sulloway, the anti-scientist

The basic aim of all bureaucrats is to maximize their funding and minimize their workload

A lesson in Australian: When an Australian calls someone a "big-noter", he is saying that the person is a chronic and rather pathetic seeker of admiration -- as in someone who often pulls out "big notes" (e.g. $100.00 bills) to pay for things, thus endeavouring to create the impression that he is rich. The term describes the mentality rather than the actual behavior with money and it aptly describes many Leftists. When they purport to show "compassion" by advocating things that cost themselves nothing (e.g. advocating more taxes on "the rich" to help "the poor"), an Australian might say that the Leftist is "big-noting himself". There is an example of the usage here. The term conveys contempt. There is a wise description of Australians generally here

Some ancient wisdom for Leftists: "Be not righteous overmuch; neither make thyself over wise: Why shouldest thou die before thy time?" -- Ecclesiastes 7:16

Jesse Jackson: "There is nothing more painful to me at this stage in my life than to walk down the street and hear footsteps and start thinking about robbery -- then look around and see somebody white and feel relieved." There ARE important racial differences.

Some Jimmy Carter wisdom: "I think it's inevitable that there will be a lower standard of living than what everybody had always anticipated," he told advisers in 1979. "there's going to be a downward turning."

Heritage is what survives death: Very rare and hence very valuable

Big business is not your friend. As Adam Smith said: "People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public, or in some contrivance to raise prices. It is impossible indeed to prevent such meetings, by any law which either could be executed, or would be consistent with liberty or justice. But though the law cannot hinder people of the same trade from sometimes assembling together, it ought to do nothing to facilitate such assemblies; much less to render them necessary

How can I accept the Communist doctrine, which sets up as its bible, above and beyond criticism, an obsolete textbook which I know not only to be scientifically erroneous but without interest or application to the modern world? How can I adopt a creed which, preferring the mud to the fish, exalts the boorish proletariat above the bourgeoisie and the intelligentsia, who with all their faults, are the quality of life and surely carry the seeds of all human achievement? Even if we need a religion, how can we find it in the turbid rubbish of the red bookshop? It is hard for an educated, decent, intelligent son of Western Europe to find his ideals here, unless he has first suffered some strange and horrid process of conversion which has changed all his values. -- John Maynard Keynes

Some wisdom from "Bron" Waugh: "The purpose of politics is to help them [politicians] overcome these feelings of inferiority and compensate for their personal inadequacies in the pursuit of power"

"There are countless horrible things happening all over the country, and horrible people prospering, but we must never allow them to disturb our equanimity or deflect us from our sacred duty to sabotage and annoy them whenever possible"

The urge to pass new laws must be seen as an illness, not much different from the urge to bite old women. Anyone suspected of suffering from it should either be treated with the appropriate pills or, if it is too late for that, elected to Parliament [or Congress, as the case may be] and paid a huge salary with endless holidays, to do nothing whatever"

"It is my settled opinion, after some years as a political correspondent, that no one is attracted to a political career in the first place unless he is socially or emotionally crippled"

Two lines below of a famous hymn that would be incomprehensible to Leftists today ("honor"? "right"? "freedom?" Freedom to agree with them is the only freedom they believe in)

First to fight for right and freedom,
And to keep our honor clean

It is of course the hymn of the USMC -- still today the relentless warriors that they always were. Freedom needs a soldier

If any of the short observations above about Leftism seem wrong, note that they do not stand alone. The evidence for them is set out at great length in my MONOGRAPH on Leftism.

3 memoirs of "Supermac", a 20th century Disraeli (Aristocratic British Conservative Prime Minister -- 1957 to 1963 -- Harold Macmillan):

"It breaks my heart to see (I can't interfere or do anything at my age) what is happening in our country today - this terrible strike of the best men in the world, who beat the Kaiser's army and beat Hitler's army, and never gave in. Pointless, endless. We can't afford that kind of thing. And then this growing division which the noble Lord who has just spoken mentioned, of a comparatively prosperous south, and an ailing north and midlands. That can't go on." -- Mac on the British working class: "the best men in the world" (From his Maiden speech in the House of Lords, 13 November 1984)

"As a Conservative, I am naturally in favour of returning into private ownership and private management all those means of production and distribution which are now controlled by state capitalism"

During Macmillan's time as prime minister, average living standards steadily rose while numerous social reforms were carried out

"Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a target no one else can see." -- Arthur Schopenhauer


The Bible is an Israeli book

There is a view on both Left and Right that Jews are "too" influential. And it is true that they are more influential than their numbers would indicate. But they are exactly as influential as their IQs would indicate

To me, hostility to the Jews is a terrible tragedy. I weep for them at times. And I do literally put my money where my mouth is. I do at times send money to Israeli charities

My (Gentile) opinion of antisemitism: The Jews are the best we've got so killing them is killing us.

It’s a strange paradox when anti-Zionists argue that Jews should suffer and wander without a homeland while urging that Palestinians ought to have security and territory.

"And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed" -- Genesis 12:3

"O pray for the peace of Jerusalem: They shall prosper that love thee" Psalm 122:6.

If I forget you, Jerusalem, may my right hand forget its skill. May my tongue cling to the roof of my mouth if I do not remember you, if I do not consider Jerusalem my highest joy -- Psalm 137 (NIV)

Israel, like the Jews throughout history, is hated not for her vices but her virtues. Israel is hated, as the United States is hated, because Israel is successful, because Israel is free, and because Israel is good. As Maxim Gorky put it: “Whatever nonsense the anti-Semites may talk, they dislike the Jew only because he is obviously better, more adroit, and more willing and capable of work than they are.” Whether driven by culture or genes—or like most behavior, an inextricable mix—the fact of Jewish genius is demonstrable." -- George Gilder

To Leftist haters, all the basic rules of liberal society — rejection of hate speech, commitment to academic freedom, rooting out racism, the absolute commitment to human dignity — go out the window when the subject is Israel.

I have always liked the story of Gideon (See Judges chapters 6 to 8) and it is surely no surprise that in the present age Israel is the Gideon of nations: Few in numbers but big in power and impact.

Is the Israel Defence Force the most effective military force per capita since Genghis Khan? They probably are but they are also the most ethically advanced military force that the world has ever seen

If I were not an atheist, I would believe that God had a sense of humour. He gave his chosen people (the Jews) enormous advantages -- high intelligence and high drive -- but to keep it fair he deprived them of something hugely important too: Political sense. So Jews to this day tend very strongly to be Leftist -- even though the chief source of antisemitism for roughly the last 200 years has been the political Left!

And the other side of the coin is that Jews tend to despise conservatives and Christians. Yet American fundamentalist Christians are the bedrock of the vital American support for Israel, the ultimate bolthole for all Jews. So Jewish political irrationality seems to be a rather good example of the saying that "The LORD giveth and the LORD taketh away". There are many other examples of such perversity (or "balance"). The sometimes severe side-effects of most pharmaceutical drugs is an obvious one but there is another ethnic example too, a rather amusing one. Chinese people are in general smart and patient people but their rate of traffic accidents in China is about 10 times higher than what prevails in Western societies. They are brilliant mathematicians and fearless business entrepreneurs but at the same time bad drivers!

Conservatives, on the other hand, could be antisemitic on entirely rational grounds: Namely, the overwhelming Leftism of the Diaspora Jewish population as a whole. Because they judge the individual, however, only a tiny minority of conservative-oriented people make such general judgments. The longer Jews continue on their "stiff-necked" course, however, the more that is in danger of changing. The children of Israel have been a stiff necked people since the days of Moses, however, so they will no doubt continue to vote with their emotions rather than their reason.

I despair of the ADL. Jews have enough problems already and yet in the ADL one has a prominent Jewish organization that does its best to make itself offensive to Christians. Their Leftism is more important to them than the welfare of Jewry -- which is the exact opposite of what they ostensibly stand for! Jewish cleverness seems to vanish when politics are involved. Fortunately, Christians are true to their saviour and have loving hearts. Jewish dissatisfaction with the myopia of the ADL is outlined here. Note that Foxy was too grand to reply to it.

Fortunately for America, though, liberal Jews there are rapidly dying out through intermarriage and failure to reproduce. And the quite poisonous liberal Jews of Israel are not much better off. Judaism is slowly returning to Orthodoxy and the Orthodox tend to be conservative.

The above is good testimony to the accuracy of the basic conservative insight that almost anything in human life is too complex to be reduced to any simple rule and too complex to be reduced to any rule at all without allowance for important exceptions to the rule concerned

Amid their many virtues, one virtue is often lacking among Jews in general and Israelis in particular: Humility. And that's an antisemitic comment only if Hashem is antisemitic. From Moses on, the Hebrew prophets repeatedy accused the Israelites of being "stiff-necked" and urged them to repent. So it's no wonder that the greatest Jewish prophet of all -- Jesus -- not only urged humility but exemplified it in his life and death

"Why should the German be interested in the liberation of the Jew, if the Jew is not interested in the liberation of the German?... We recognize in Judaism, therefore, a general anti-social element of the present time... In the final analysis, the emancipation of the Jews is the emancipation of mankind from Judaism.... Indeed, in North America, the practical domination of Judaism over the Christian world has achieved as its unambiguous and normal expression that the preaching of the Gospel itself and the Christian ministry have become articles of trade... Money is the jealous god of Israel, in face of which no other god may exist". Who said that? Hitler? No. It was Karl Marx. See also here and here and here. For roughly two centuries now, antisemitism has, throughout the Western world, been principally associated with Leftism (including the socialist Hitler) -- as it is to this day. See here.

Karl Marx hated just about everyone. Even his father, the kindly Heinrich Marx, thought Karl was not much of a human being

Leftists call their hatred of Israel "Anti-Zionism" but Zionists are only a small minority in Israel

Some of the Leftist hatred of Israel is motivated by old-fashioned antisemitism (beliefs in Jewish "control" etc.) but most of it is just the regular Leftist hatred of success in others. And because the societies they inhabit do not give them the vast amount of recognition that their large but weak egos need, some of the most virulent haters of Israel and America live in those countries. So the hatred is the product of pathologically high self-esteem.

Their threatened egos sometimes drive Leftists into quite desperate flights from reality. For instance, they often call Israel an "Apartheid state" -- when it is in fact the Arab states that practice Apartheid -- witness the severe restrictions on Christians in Saudi Arabia. There are no such restrictions in Israel.

If the Palestinians put down their weapons, there'd be peace. If the Israelis put down their weapons, there'd be genocide.


Many people hunger and thirst after righteousness. Some find it in the hatreds of the Left. Others find it in the love of Christ. I don't hunger and thirst after righteousness at all. I hunger and thirst after truth. How old-fashioned can you get?

The kneejerk response of the Green/Left to people who challenge them is to say that the challenger is in the pay of "Big Oil", "Big Business", "Big Pharma", "Exxon-Mobil", "The Pioneer Fund" or some other entity that they see, in their childish way, as a boogeyman. So I think it might be useful for me to point out that I have NEVER received one cent from anybody by way of support for what I write. As a retired person, I live entirely on my own investments. I do not work for anybody and I am not beholden to anybody. And I have NO investments in oil companies, mining companies or "Big Pharma"

UPDATE: Despite my (statistical) aversion to mining stocks, I have recently bought a few shares in BHP -- the world's biggest miner, I gather. I run the grave risk of becoming a speaker of famous last words for saying this but I suspect that BHP is now so big as to be largely immune from the risks that plague most mining companies. I also know of no issue affecting BHP where my writings would have any relevance. The Left seem to have a visceral hatred of miners. I have never quite figured out why.

I imagine that few of my readers will understand it, but I am an unabashed monarchist. And, as someone who was born and bred in a monarchy and who still lives there (i.e. Australia), that gives me no conflicts at all. In theory, one's respect for the monarchy does not depend on who wears the crown but the impeccable behaviour of the present Queen does of course help perpetuate that respect. Aside from my huge respect for the Queen, however, my favourite member of the Royal family is the redheaded Prince Harry. The Royal family is of course a military family and Prince Harry is a great example of that. As one of the world's most privileged people, he could well be an idle layabout but instead he loves his life in the army. When his girlfriend Chelsy ditched him because he was so often away, Prince Harry said: "I love Chelsy but the army comes first". A perfect military man! I doubt that many women would understand or approve of his attitude but perhaps my own small army background powers my approval of that attitude.

I imagine that most Americans might find this rather mad -- but I believe that a constitutional Monarchy is the best form of government presently available. Can a libertarian be a Monarchist? I think so -- and prominent British libertarian Sean Gabb seems to think so too! Long live the Queen! (And note that Australia ranks well above the USA on the Index of Economic freedom. Heh!)

The Australian flag with the Union Jack quartered in it

Throughout Europe there is an association between monarchism and conservatism. It is a little sad that American conservatives do not have access to that satisfaction. So even though Australia is much more distant from Europe (geographically) than the USA is, Australia is in some ways more of an outpost of Europe than America is! Mind you: Australia is not very atypical of its region. Australia lies just South of Asia -- and both Japan and Thailand have greatly respected monarchies. And the demise of the Cambodian monarchy was disastrous for Cambodia

Throughout the world today, possession of a U.S. or U.K. passport is greatly valued. I once shared that view. Developments in recent years have however made me profoundly grateful that I am a 5th generation Australian. My Australian passport is a door into a much less oppressive and much less messed-up place than either the USA or Britain

Following the Sotomayor precedent, I would hope that a wise older white man such as myself with the richness of that experience would more often than not reach a better conclusion than someone who hasn’t lived that life.

IQ and ideology: Most academics are Left-leaning. Why? Because very bright people who have balls go into business, while very bright people with no balls go into academe. I did both with considerable success, which makes me a considerable rarity. Although I am a born academic, I have always been good with money too. My share portfolio even survived the GFC in good shape. The academics hate it that bright people with balls make more money than them.

I have no hesitation in saying that the single book which has influenced me most is the New Testament. And my Scripture blog will show that I know whereof I speak. Some might conclude that I must therefore be a very confused sort of atheist but I can assure everyone that I do not feel the least bit confused. The New Testament is a lighthouse that has illumined the thinking of all sorts of men and women and I am deeply grateful that it has shone on me.

I am rather pleased to report that I am a lifelong conservative. Out of intellectual curiosity, I did in my youth join organizations from right across the political spectrum so I am certainly not closed-minded and am very familiar with the full spectrum of political thinking. Nonetheless, I did not have to undergo the lurch from Left to Right that so many people undergo. At age 13 I used my pocket-money to subscribe to the "Reader's Digest" -- the main conservative organ available in small town Australia of the 1950s. I have learnt much since but am pleased and amused to note that history has since confirmed most of what I thought at that early age. Conservatism is in touch with reality. Leftism is not.

I imagine that the RD are still sending mailouts to my 1950s address

Most teenagers have sporting and movie posters on their bedroom walls. At age 14 I had a map of Taiwan on my wall.

"Remind me never to get this guy mad at me" -- Instapundit

It seems to be a common view that you cannot talk informatively about a country unless you have been there. I completely reject that view but it is nonetheless likely that some Leftist dimbulb will at some stage aver that any comments I make about politics and events in the USA should not be heeded because I am an Australian who has lived almost all his life in Australia. I am reluctant to pander to such ignorance in the era of the "global village" but for the sake of the argument I might mention that I have visited the USA 3 times -- spending enough time in Los Angeles and NYC to get to know a fair bit about those places at least. I did however get outside those places enough to realize that they are NOT America.

"Intellectual" = Leftist dreamer. I have more publications in the academic journals than almost all "public intellectuals" but I am never called an intellectual and nor would I want to be. Call me a scholar or an academic, however, and I will accept either as a just and earned appellation

A small personal note: I have always been very self-confident. I inherited it from my mother, along with my skeptical nature. So I don't need to feed my self-esteem by claiming that I am wiser than others -- which is what Leftists do.

As with conservatives generally, it bothers me not a bit to admit to large gaps in my knowledge and understanding. For instance, I don't know if the slight global warming of the 20th century will resume in the 21st, though I suspect not. And I don't know what a "healthy" diet is, if there is one. Constantly-changing official advice on the matter suggests that nobody knows

Leftists are usually just anxious little people trying to pretend that they are significant. No doubt there are some Leftists who are genuinely concerned about inequities in our society but their arrogance lies in thinking that they understand it without close enquiry

My academic background

My full name is Dr. John Joseph RAY. I am a former university teacher aged 65 at the time of writing in 2009. I was born of Australian pioneer stock in 1943 at Innisfail in the State of Queensland in Australia. I trace my ancestry wholly to the British Isles. After an early education at Innisfail State Rural School and Cairns State High School, I taught myself for matriculation. I took my B.A. in Psychology from the University of Queensland in Brisbane. I then moved to Sydney (in New South Wales, Australia) and took my M.A. in psychology from the University of Sydney in 1969 and my Ph.D. from the School of Behavioural Sciences at Macquarie University in 1974. I first tutored in psychology at Macquarie University and then taught sociology at the University of NSW. My doctorate is in psychology but I taught mainly sociology in my 14 years as a university teacher. In High Schools I taught economics. I have taught in both traditional and "progressive" (low discipline) High Schools. Fuller biographical notes here

I completed the work for my Ph.D. at the end of 1970 but the degree was not awarded until 1974 -- due to some academic nastiness from Seymour Martin Lipset and Fred Emery. A conservative or libertarian who makes it through the academic maze has to be at least twice as good as the average conformist Leftist. Fortunately, I am a born academic.

Despite my great sympathy and respect for Christianity, I am the most complete atheist you could find. I don't even believe that the word "God" is meaningful. I am not at all original in that view, of course. Such views are particularly associated with the noted German philosopher Rudolf Carnap. Unlike Carnap, however, none of my wives have committed suicide

Very occasionally in my writings I make reference to the greats of analytical philosophy such as Carnap and Wittgenstein. As philosophy is a heavily Leftist discipline however, I have long awaited an attack from some philosopher accusing me of making coat-trailing references not backed by any real philosophical erudition. I suppose it is encouraging that no such attacks have eventuated but I thought that I should perhaps forestall them anyway -- by pointing out that in my younger days I did complete three full-year courses in analytical philosophy (at 3 different universities!) and that I have had papers on mainstream analytical philosophy topics published in academic journals

As well as being an academic, I am an army man and I am pleased and proud to say that I have worn my country's uniform. Although my service in the Australian army was chiefly noted for its un-notability, I DID join voluntarily in the Vietnam era, I DID reach the rank of Sergeant, and I DID volunteer for a posting in Vietnam. So I think I may be forgiven for saying something that most army men think but which most don't say because they think it is too obvious: The profession of arms is the noblest profession of all because it is the only profession where you offer to lay down your life in performing your duties. Our men fought so that people could say and think what they like but I myself always treat military men with great respect -- respect which in my view is simply their due.

A real army story here

Even a stopped clock is right twice a day and there is JUST ONE saying of Hitler's that I rather like. It may not even be original to him but it is found in chapter 2 of Mein Kampf (published in 1925): "Widerstaende sind nicht da, dass man vor ihnen kapituliert, sondern dass man sie bricht". The equivalent English saying is "Difficulties exist to be overcome" and that traces back at least to the 1920s -- with attributions to Montessori and others. Hitler's metaphor is however one of smashing barriers rather than of politely hopping over them and I am myself certainly more outspoken than polite. Hitler's colloquial Southern German is notoriously difficult to translate but I think I can manage a reasonable translation of that saying: "Resistance is there not for us to capitulate to but for us to break". I am quite sure that I don't have anything like that degree of determination in my own life but it seems to me to be a good attitude in general anyway

I have used many sites to post my writings over the years and many have gone bad on me for various reasons. So if you click on a link here to my other writings you may get a "page not found" response if the link was put up some time before the present. All is not lost, however. All my writings have been reposted elsewhere. If you do strike a failed link, just take the filename (the last part of the link) and add it to the address of any of my current home pages and -- Voila! -- you should find the article concerned.

COMMENTS: I have gradually added comments facilities to all my blogs. The comments I get are interesting. They are mostly from Leftists and most consist either of abuse or mere assertions. Reasoned arguments backed up by references to supporting evidence are almost unheard of from Leftists. Needless to say, I just delete such useless comments.

You can email me here (Hotmail address). In emailing me, you can address me as "John", "Jon", "Dr. Ray" or "JR" and that will be fine -- but my preference is for "JR" -- and that preference has NOTHING to do with an American soap opera that featured a character who was referred to in that way


"Tongue Tied"
"Dissecting Leftism"
"Australian Politics"
"Education Watch International"
"Political Correctness Watch"
"Greenie Watch"
Western Heart


"Marx & Engels in their own words"
"A scripture blog"
"Some memoirs"
To be continued ....
Coral reef compendium.
Queensland Police
Australian Police News
Paralipomena (3)
Of Interest
Dagmar Schellenberger
My alternative Wikipedia


"Food & Health Skeptic"
"Eye on Britain"
"Immigration Watch International".
"Leftists as Elitists"
Socialized Medicine
QANTAS -- A dying octopus
BRIAN LEITER (Ladderman)
Obama Watch
Obama Watch (2)
Dissecting Leftism -- Large font site
Michael Darby
Paralipomena (2)
AGL -- A bumbling monster
Telstra/Bigpond follies
Optus bungling
Vodafrauds (vodafone)
Bank of Queensland blues

There are also two blogspot blogs which record what I think are my main recent articles here and here. Similar content can be more conveniently accessed via my subject-indexed list of short articles here or here (I rarely write long articles these days)

Some more useful links

Alt archives for "Dissecting Leftism" here or here
Longer Academic Papers
Johnray links
Academic home page
Academic Backup Page
General Backup
General Backup 2

Selected reading



Rightism defined
Leftist Churches
Leftist Racism
Fascism is Leftist
Hitler a socialist
Leftism is authoritarian
James on Leftism
Irbe on Leftism
Beltt on Leftism
Van Hiel
Pyszczynski et al.

Cautionary blogs about big Australian organizations:

Bank of Queensland
Queensland Police
Australian police news
QANTAS, a dying octopus

Main academic menu
Menu of recent writings
basic home page
Pictorial Home Page
Selected pictures from blogs (Backup here)
Another picture page (Best with broadband. Rarely updated)

Note: If the link to one of my articles is not working, the article concerned can generally be viewed by prefixing to the filename the following:

OR: (After 2015)