The creeping dictatorship of the Left...

This document is part of an archive of postings on Political Correctness Watch, a blog hosted by Blogspot who are in turn owned by Google. The index to the archive is available here or here. Indexes to my other blogs can be located here or here. Archives do accompany my original postings but, given the animus towards conservative writing on Google and other internet institutions, their permanence is uncertain. These alternative archives help ensure a more permanent record of what I have written. My Home Page. My Recipes. My alternative Wikipedia. My Blogroll. Email me (John Ray) here. NOTE: The short comments that I have in the side column of the primary site for this blog are now given at the foot of this document.

The picture below is worth more than a 1,000 words ...... Better than long speeches. It shows some Middle-Eastern people walking to reach their final objective,to live in a European country, or migrate to America.

In the photo, there are 7 men and 1 woman.up to this point – nothing special. But in observing a bit closer, you will notice that the woman has bare feet,accompanied by 3 children, and of the 3, she is carrying 2.There is the problem,none of the men are helping her,because in their culture the woman represents nothing.She is only good to be a slave to the men. Do you really believe that these particular individuals could integrate into our societies and countries and respect our customs and traditions ????


31 August, 2020

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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


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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


The New Far Left Fascism

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

30 August, 2020 

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

An email from Adam Brandon, President, FreedomWorks

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

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

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

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

I was cursed at, shoved, and spit on.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

It’s time to say, “NO!”

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

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

How do I know?

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

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

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


Who killed George Floyd?

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

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

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

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

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

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

The memo of that meeting is embedded at the link.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

The letter adds:

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

What, then, is going on?

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

No matter—cultural revolutions are incoherent and nihilist.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

It topples what it can neither match nor even comprehend.

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

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



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

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

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

28 August, 2020 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

27 August, 2020 

A California nightmare

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


Democrats Hate the Nation They Want to Rule

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


No reason to taint with guilt our faith in Western culture

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

26 August, 2020 

Chaos in Wisconsin City as Rioters Burn Buildings, Attack Police

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

The state Department of Justice is probing the shooting.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


Conservatives Ceded Too Many Battlefields

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


Democrats Are Waging War Against Tradition and the Constitution

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

25 August, 2020 

Tennessee's Governor Has Quite the Punishment for Left-wing Rioters That Will Definitely Bring Lawsuits

I don’t blame Tennessee’s Gov. Bill Lee for signing this bill into law. He increased punishments against those engaging in the type of mayhem seen in Portland, Seattle, and Chicago, some of which include the loss of voting rights. Yes, you can bet the liberal media, Democrats, and the American Civil Liberties Union is going to be immensely triggered by this law.

Oh wait; the ACLU state chapter already responded saying, “We are very disappointed in Governor Lee’s decision to sign this bill, which chills free speech, undermines criminal justice reform and fails to address the very issues of racial justice and police violence raised by the protesters who are being targeted” (via The Hill):

Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee (R) quietly signed a bill into law ramping up punishments for certain kinds of protests, including losing the right to vote.

The GOP-controlled state General Assembly passed the measure last week during a three-day special legislative session and was signed without an announcement earlier this week.

Among other things, the new law stipulates that people who illegally camp on state property will face a Class E felony, punishable by up to six years in prison. People found guilty of a felony in Tennessee lose the right to vote.

The new law also slaps a mandatory 45-day sentence for aggravated rioting, boosts the fine for blocking highway access to emergency vehicles and enhances the punishment for aggravated assault against a first responder to a Class C felony.

Look, this leftist mayhem that’s engulfed the nation that was intentionally suppressed from being mentioned at the Democratic National Convention—no shocker there—has to end. It’s been weeks of this nonsense, and it’s no longer about race, police reform, or George Floyd, the man at the center of this officer-involved fatality by the Minneapolis Police that set off this new wave of left-wing activism.

It’s not about Black Lives Matter anymore. It’s about Marxist revolution. How does threatening to blow up federal buildings have anything to do with furthering police reform, which many in the media said this was all about? Yes, federal buildings in Portland had to be evacuated Friday due to car bomb threats.

It’s time to put the mob down. Federal agents were deployed to protect these buildings, as they have every right to do and enforce law and order. The media smeared them as the SS-Gestapo. Withdraw and calm will reign, they said. That didn’t happen. The left-wing mob is now taking this nonsense to the suburbs.

Law and order must be restored.


Americans Must Oppose the Tyranny That Is Rapidly Spreading Across US

Rebekah Gantner

As Adolf Hitler rose to power, he took control of churches, shut down businesses, encouraged neighbors to report each other, and created a public surveillance operation system. If these actions sound familiar, they should. Public officials and bureaucrats are now putting their own tyranny on full display, using the COVID-19 crisis to impose similar draconian tactics in the United States.

While Maryland officials keep the state in lockdown, they are encouraging citizens not only to snitch on one another for breaking “prevention guidelines,” but they are allowed to do so anonymously! The Maryland Emergency Management Agency, State Police, and Department of Health announced a “COVID Prevention Line” available 24 hours a day as well as an email address where citizens can “report situations of concern where prevention guidelines are being ignored and the potential for the spread of COVID-19 is high.” Reports will be followed up with a visit from the health department or law enforcement.

Since July 2, nearly 40 Anne Arundel County businesses and restaurants have received citations, including my church. After an anonymous reporting on August 11, a female employee from the Anne Arundel County Department of Health showed up at our Sunday morning service.

The health official presented our associate pastor with a citation and an "Order for Immediate Compliance." The order states that upon inspecting the church, “numerous deficiencies” were found “that result in an unreasonable risk of exacerbating the spread of COVID-19.” It threatens the church with closure if they do not comply.

The “deficiencies” checkmarked on the compliance form include “Employees and/or customers are not wearing required or proper face coverings that fully cover a person’s nose or mouth” and failure to follow “social distancing guidance.” The health official also referenced the “lively” singing which consisted of one piano and hymns on a screen.

It is important to note that while the "Order for Immediate Compliance" states an investigation was conducted, the health official never looked into the sanctuary. It is appalling that the Department of Health has taken it upon themselves to tell churches how to conduct their services. That they would deem a church unsafe and penalize it based on an anonymous report is also egregious.

My church is a small congregation of around 140 individuals and even fewer right now due to the health crisis. None of the church attendees are sick with COVID, hand sanitizer and masks are available, the church is cleaned regularly, and everyone who attends is there because they desire to worship God.

The health department official informed our associate pastor that she will return the following Sunday. Lack of compliance can result in the closure of the church, a misdemeanor charge, up to one year of imprisonment, and or a fine of up to $5,000.

History has shown time and again that tyrannical leaders who get a taste of power will abuse that power. Government bureaucrats have told churches over the past five months when they can and cannot meet, how many people can attend a service, that singing and home Bible studies are not allowed, and masks and social distancing are required. If government bureaucrats can make these demands, who is to say they won’t use or create a crisis to shut church doors forever?

My friend Kitty Werthmann lived in Austria under Hitler’s rule. She has traveled all across the country to warn American citizens about the dangers of totalitarianism. Austrians were arrested for attending church. If they worked for the government, church attendance meant that they were fired from their jobs. Kitty also shared the following experience in one of her speeches.

“We had another agency designed to monitor business. My brother-in-law owned a restaurant that had square tables. Government officials told him he had to replace them with round tables because people might bump themselves on the corners. Then they said he had to have additional bathroom facilities. It was just a small dairy business with a snack bar. He couldn’t meet all the demands. Soon, he went out of business. If the government owned the large businesses and not many small ones existed, it could be in control.”

In his book Kingdoms in Conflict, Charles Colson describes a meeting between a Gestapo official and Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a German pastor who was martyred for his opposition of the Nazis. The official asked, “You do not really have much respect for the state, do you, Pastor?” Bonhoeffer responded, “I have enough respect for the state to protest when it does wrong.”

Citizens who value liberty and religious freedom must remain vigilant and make their voices heard. We must stand up and fight, and the time is now. Bureaucrats are waging a war on our churches and businesses. They are fabricating a dilemma, pitting a false sense of safety against our constitutionally guaranteed rights as citizens of the United States. America will only remain the land of the free so long as we oppose the tyranny that is rapidly spreading across our country. As my friend Kitty says, “After America, there is no place to go.”


How San Francisco’s Progressive Policies Made the Homelessness Crisis Worse

San Francisco is falling apart. The city is the wealthiest metropolitan area in the United States, but also has become a haven for tent encampments, drugs, trash, and violence—conditions that are even more desperate and disordered than slums in many developing countries.

Progressive political leaders insist that this stark contrast is the result of capitalism, racism, and predatory housing development. San Francisco’s elected officials preach unlimited “compassion,” but their policies have resulted in a system of incredible cruelty, with record-high levels of homelessness, addiction, and overdose deaths.

Earlier this month, I released a short documentary exploring the contradictions of San Francisco’s homelessness policies.

The city now spends more than $1 billion per year on homelessness—including shelters, permanent housing, law enforcement, and medical programs—but the number of those living on the streets has risen 32% in the past decade.

As I demonstrate in the film, the core problem is that the city’s political leaders cannot grasp the true causes and consequences of widespread street homelessness.

Despite good intentions, the city’s policies amount to a regime of extreme permissiveness: The San Francisco Board of Supervisors insists on a policy of free housing for the homeless and, at the same time, the city’s district attorney, Chesa Boudin, has decriminalized public camping, drug consumption, prostitution, and other “quality-of-life crimes.”

The result is sadly predictable. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the city’s policies have created an “influx of about 450 chronically homeless people a year,” who migrate to neighborhoods such as the Tenderloin District because they have become a “sanctuary for people who are unwilling to participate in programs designed to get them off, and keep them off, a life in the streets.”

No matter how many “permanent supportive housing” units the city builds, it never can keep up with the rate of migration—dooming these policies to failure.

As homelessness has compounded over the years, the outcome is astonishing: according to the Department of Public Health, San Francisco now has a population of 18,000 homeless individuals, 4,000 of whom suffer from the “perilous trifecta” of homelessness, addiction, and mental illness—which is enormously costly in terms of services and street disorder.

As journalist Erica Sandberg told me: “If our problems could be solved with money, our problems would have been solved a long time ago. It’s not the funding, it’s policy.”

Fortunately, there is a better way. As I explain in a recent Heritage Foundation report, we have a promising alternative to San Francisco’s permissive approach to homelessness.

Rather than focusing on “housing first,” a policy that shelters the homeless while leaving them trapped in a cycle of addiction and mental illness, the most successful homelessness programs prioritize “treatment first.” This approach provides housing, but requires participation in a rigorous program of drug treatment, psychiatric care, and employment training.

According to a three-decade study at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, the treatment first approach can deliver strong positive outcomes for the homeless. In one trial program, 44% of men were stably housed and 53% of men were stably employed after 12 months—breaking the cycle of homelessness and setting them on a path to self-sufficiency.

The lesson from San Francisco is clear: A policy of permissiveness is a road to ruin. Policymakers must focus on the human aspect of homelessness—addressing addiction, mental illness, and unemployment—if they want better outcomes.


Australia: Diversity has once again let Victoria down

Victoria’s commitment to diversity has once again landed the state in hot water, and I’d be saying ‘I told you so’ if the situation weren’t so dire, writes Andrew Bolt.

I would thank the lunatic Victorian government for making my critics look stupid, if it wasn’t that so many people have died.

Two months ago I was savaged by the mob for saying this second wave of infections “exposes the stupidity of that multicultural slogan ‘diversity makes us stronger’”.

I said diversity had instead weakened us.

I won’t go through all my evidence: how the virus was worst in the most multicultural suburbs, housing commission towers, workplaces and an Islamic school, after slipping out of quarantine hotels where many guards were immigrant workers, badly trained.

Nor will I again go through all the admissions by the Victorian government that public health messages were not reaching ethnic groups where English was poor.

Let me instead point out even more evidence — crazy stuff — that’s come out since activists said they’d ask the Press Council to punish me for my heresy.

Last week, a public servant working in Victoria’s highly infectious quarantine hotels told an inquiry he’d been given an hour of training in “equity and diversity”, but none on personal protective equipment.

Don’t think this must be an anomaly. The self-destructive preaching of “diversity” seems to run right through what should have been a single-minded war to stop the virus.

About 90 per cent of the infections in this second wave have been traced back to a hotel where security was handed to Unified Security, which was not a preferred tenderer but did boast it was “Indigenous-owned”.

And it seems the government hasn’t learned its lesson.

Check its extraordinary ads now for a manager and several policy officers for its COVID-19 Forward Strategy and Co-ordination Branch.

In the nine-paragraph job descriptions, there are four paragraphs stressing the branch’s commitment to diversity, and not one to its commitment to stopping people getting sick.

It declares: “We are building an inclusive workplace that embraces diversity of backgrounds and differences”, and “we encourage job applications from Aboriginal people, people with disabilities, LGBTI and people from culturally diverse backgrounds”.

Only later, in the job summary, is there one fleeting reference to what should be the most urgent part of the job, “the development of policy advice on measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19”.

But for all this yammer about “diversity”, what happened? A second wave of infections that’s hit the most “diverse” communities worst



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

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

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

24 August, 2020 

Operation Legend Takes Dozens of Killers Off the Streets, Tracks Down Thousands of Fugitives

Speaking from Kansas City, Missouri Wednesday afternoon, Attorney General Bill Barr gave an update on Operation Legend and efforts by the federal government to solve violent crimes.

"Three weeks ago we substantially expanded Operation Legend and we are now underway in nine U.S. cities...the Operation is named for Legend Taliferro, a four year old boy who was shot while he was asleep in his apartment. For us, Legend is a symbol of the many hundreds of innocent lives that have been taken in the recent upsurge in crime in many of our urban areas," Barr said, flanked by Taliferro's mother and father. "His life mattered and the lives of all of those victims matter. His name should be remembered and his senseless death, like those of all the other innocent victims in this recent surge should be unacceptable to all Americans. Through Operation Legend the federal government has dispatched to these nine cities more than 1000 additional agents to work shoulder to shoulder with our state and local partners."

"Operation Legend is the heart of the federal government's response to this upturn in violent crime. Its mission is to save lives, solve crimes and take violent offenders off the streets before they can claim more victims. Rather than demonizing and defunding our police, we are supporting and strengthening our law enforcemcent partners at the state and local levels," Barr continued. "So far federal and state task forces involved in Operation Legend have made almost 1500 arrests, 1485 to be precise. Many of those arrests are for violent state crimes including 90 homicides like Legend's murderer. That's more than 90 suspected killers who might still be on the streets without Operation Legend and in many cities, as I said, the Operation is just getting started."

In Kansas City alone, Operation Legend has resulted in the arrest of 18 homicide suspects and the seizure of over 70 illegal firearms.

In cities across the country, results are also pouring in.

"As part of Operation Legend we have apprehended over 1000 fugitives," Barr said. "One of the most important developments has been the seizure of hundreds of hundreds of guns." "Getting them off the streets is saving lives," he continued.


The dangerous rise of race consciousness

The Evergreen affair was a harbinger of the hyper-racialised politics we now live with.

Race is at the forefront of today’s discourse. Academia, journalism, and government have become influenced by a ‘social-justice’ worldview, sometimes referred to as intersectionality, applied postmodernism or neo-Marxism. While we wrestle to understand these cultural trends, there is one relatively unknown sociologist whose work offers deep insight into what is happening today.

In 1981, Anne Wortham published The Other Side of Racism: A Philosophical Study of Black Race Consciousness. The book sought to understand the psychological and intellectual drivers of civil-rights activism.

While the civil-rights movement undoubtedly made fantastic and necessary strides for liberty, some of the ethno-collectivistic ideas that Wortham studied persist today, and have become thoroughly entrenched. Her concept of ‘ethno-race consciousness’, developed decades ago, gives a great deal of insight into how many understand race today.

Consider the Evergreen State College affair of 2017. A large group of protesting students confronted biology professor Bret Weinstein over his objection to a ‘Day of Absence’ demonstration, which expected white students and faculty to leave campus for a day in order to ‘centre’ students of colour and allow them to discuss social justice. During the protests, students coerced administrators, barricaded the library and effectively captured the institution. The protests resulted in a number of lawsuits, with Weinstein leaving Evergreen as part of a settlement. This affair is a perfect example of the ethno-collectivistic attitudes and behaviour that characterise a contemporary social-justice worldview.

I recently finished my master’s thesis on the Evergreen affair, and part of my analysis of this extraordinary event relies on Wortham’s idea of ethno-race consciousness. She defines this as ‘a psychological, conscious, and volitional level of awareness at which an individual perceives himself and others according to characteristics of the racial categories to which they belong and the ethnic groups with which they are affiliated’.

An ethno-race conscious person perceives himself first and foremost as his race. As one Evergreen graduate said, ‘I am a black woman before my name is [Ava Johnson], I am a black woman before I am a student, I am a black woman before I am a citizen of the United States of America’.

This kind of thinking replaces the idea of the individual with a view of oneself as part of a larger ethnic collective. Accordingly, this means that any interaction between people of different ethnicities is fundamentally a diplomatic exchange between ethnic groups. This is one reason why people often preface their opinions with their group identity, saying things like ‘speaking as a white woman’ or ‘as a person of colour’.

Ethno-race consciousness, Wortham explains, is not just a passing interest in one’s ethnicity, but the belief that race is the basis of cognitive authority. You can see this manifesting at Evergreen, and in wider society, in the idea that there are truths that can only be accessed by certain ethnic groups. Consider the work of Robin DiAngelo, author of the bestseller White Fragility, who argues that white people in ‘white’ society are like fish unable to perceive the racist water in which they swim. Indeed, this is often a justification behind diversity initiatives, in that white people cannot perceive or understand the workings of race, and so should defer to others whose ethnicity grants them authority on the topic.

Another apparent aspect of this worldview is what I call ‘ethnohistorical determinism’, the idea that it’s not the content of one’s character but the historical character of one’s race that determines a person’s virtue. This means that a black person today is himself considered a victim of centuries of slavery and monstrous oppression, while a white person today is himself responsible for this victimisation.

A tragic consequence of this is de-facto and de-jure segregation, like black-only university dorms or Evergreen’s now-infamous Day of Absence. Equally troubling is the intellectual apartheid that this kind of thinking imposes. Dissent can be rendered invalid based on group identity, which makes dialogue impossible. We can’t have a ‘conversation about race’, as is often demanded, if people’s opinions are rendered invalid based on the colour of their skin.

This worldview, which has permeated many social, political and educational institutions, rejects the nuance and tolerance necessary for a pluralistic society to function. This kind of collectivism, as Wortham has argued, ‘seeks to reinforce the boundaries that divide hereditary groups and to promote solidarity within those groups without regard for what individual group members may desire’. But we must be permitted to disagree and associate with one another separate from our group affiliations, otherwise we risk exacerbating these artificial divisions.

Wortham’s concept of ethno-race consciousness was very useful in my Evergreen research, and I suspect it may help us to understand our increasingly racialised politics. It’s clear that many people today are indeed adopting an ethno-race consciousness, and turning a superficial characteristic of their identity into the fundamental basis of their person, while simultaneously regarding their individual characteristics (or biological realities such as sex) as arbitrary social constructions. They are essentialising the superficial and externalising the essential. They are turning themselves inside out.


The left’s shameful abuse of ‘the science’

Many on the left today peddle the narrative that they are more scientifically minded than those on the right. They market themselves as the heirs to the ideals of the Enlightenment – reason, progress and truth – while pillorying the right as a collection of creationists, climate-change deniers and anti-vaxxers.

This narrative is false, and increasingly so.

It is a useful fiction, however. It allows the left to dress up its moral and political views as scientific. To question them, therefore, is to question the authority of the science. It is tantamount to secular heresy. When the Democrats in the US present themselves as ‘the party of science’, they are really saying ‘do not question us’.

Left-wingers used to invoke the authority of science mainly to justify their views on how we should respond to climate change. But the left increasingly uses the same scientific, moral authority to justify its views on an ever-expanding range of issues, from race to gender.

Part of the problem here is due to just how broadly we use the term ‘science’. Traditionally, it referred to the fields of natural science, which rely heavily on quantitative methods and have an exceptionally high threshold for new ideas to enter the consensus.

Yet the authority of ‘science’ has now been appropriated by the social sciences – academic fields that are dominated by leftists. This means that social scientists’ left-wing views of class, race and gender are treated much the same as, say, biologists’ understanding of DNA – that is, as authoritative, objective and truthful.

But this is misleading. Science is based on the scientific method, which is intentionally very limited in what it can say about the world. Outside of the logical framework of mathematics, we cannot conclusively ‘prove’ any natural law (even within mathematics it gets a bit vague). Hypotheses must be put forward and tested under a range of experimental methods.

If the hypothesis is not disproved under those conditions, we say that the findings were consistent with our hypothesis. With time and multiple repeats of an experiment validating an idea, we come to accept a hypothesis as true (though, importantly, we never prove it to be true; we only fail to prove that it is false).

And if the hypothesis predicts a hitherto unobserved phenomenon which is eventually observed, that’s an added bonus. This high bar means only the strongest hypotheses survive. This is Darwinism applied to intellectual discourse.

Societal hypotheses about class, race, gender and hierarchy cannot be rigorously tested or refuted in the same way as hypotheses about, for example, the standard model of particle physics. We cannot force people to partake in experiments as we can quarks. The social sciences are plagued by these fundamental limitations and methodological weaknesses.

The social sciences have thus taken on the mantle of ‘science’ without the seriousness of the method. Moreover, the lack of political diversity within the overwhelmingly leftish milieu of the social sciences means that dissenting views are resisted while conformist ones are accepted.

Social-science findings are based on politically motivated studies, produced by an ideologically unrepresentative academy, to support the social narratives of their like-minded colleagues. The search is not for objective truth, but for that which supports pre-existing beliefs. Seek, and ye shall find an oppressive capitalist patriarchy.

The number of subjects in which certain lines of academic inquiry are considered unacceptable is increasingly broad. Research in gender studies is acceptable so long as it does not conclude that variations in outcomes between men and women could be the result of innate differences between them. Social psychologists were ferocious in their fight to banish evolutionary psychology, which suggested that not all the sins of man might be a result of the corrupting influence of society. And IQ research flies so directly in the face of the dogma that we are all created equal that it is essentially untouchable.

To question these narratives would risk destabilising the assumptions on which ‘progressive’ movements are built, so leftists engage in these games of intellectual gerrymandering.

Political biases are driven by perverse incentives in both academia and the media. So, in fields in which one’s colleagues are overwhelmingly of a specific political persuasion, there is a strong incentive not to rock that boat lest it jeopardises career advancement.

There is also a misconception that research is a dispassionate reporting of factual findings. But that’s not the case. Social scientists, whose prime (and often only) readership is other social scientists, understand that a paper which draws far-reaching conclusions suiting an established narrative is more likely to be supported and cited.

Media outlets might then draw on such research to lend their own political views the aura of scientific and academic legitimacy. Left-wing media outlets, in particular, act as if policy proposals follow naturally from academic studies, which are themselves beyond reproach.

This means that left-wing media outlets, drawing their authority from left-wing social scientists, act as if their political worldview is coming from a place of truth. The Guardian describes itself as ‘free from political and commercial bias’ and engaged in the ‘struggle for truth, humanity and justice’, as though the three must invariably align with their left-wing discourse. The Washington Post adopted the absurdly histrionic slogan ‘Democracy Dies in Darkness’ in 2017, as though the election of Donald Trump signalled a constitutional crisis instead of merely being politically unpalatable.

The implication, of course, is that the right-wing media are little more than scientifically illiterate fake-news machines. It is the left-wing media who are the keepers of knowledge and the protectors of scientific (and moral) truth. This despite the fact they are no less inclined to exaggerate reporting of scientific literature in the pursuit of clicks.

The left has pushed for decades to expand the remit of scientific knowledge without accepting the limitations of the scientific method. They are now entirely comfortable side-lining inconvenient truths which challenge their a priori beliefs.

Science is wielded by those on the left as a stick to hit those who ask reasonable questions. They have opted for expediency over intellectual seriousness. In doing so, they encourage the politicisation of scientific knowledge and the scientification of morality. In abusing science, the left is destroying political debate.


Gender reassigned to the ideological sin bin

The ACT is set to become one of the first jurisdictions in Australia to cement into law the triumph of gender ideology over common sense. It is be­ing achieved under the guise of a bill outlawing conversion therapy, which was supposed to be debated on Thursday but was postponed, due in part to unexpected public reaction.

The reason is that this bill, which ostensibly outlaws “conversion” therapy for sexual and gender identity issues, is not really about outmoded and cruel conversion therapy; it is about stopping any therapy for gender dysphoria, even in minors, other than to affirm transgender identity. This has been achieved by a clever sleight of hand. There is no real definition of conversion therapy in the bill. Instead, the bill endorses any therapy that validates transgenderism and criminalises anything that doesn’t.

By using the word conversion, and deliber­ately conflating outmoded and unethical techniques of gay conver­sion with legitimate therapies aimed at easing a young person’s anxiety about gender identity that enable them to accept their biological sex, it compounds opacity with deceit.

The bill is about ideology, not welfare, which is clear in the opening statements, which affirm the validity of all sexual and gender expression. One may well ask why it is the business of a government to tell us this, and the ideological purpose becomes clearer when it gives examples of the types of therapies that would be considered legitimate: only those that affirm sexual expression and identity — so, by extension, criminalising any therapies that don’t.

This would encompass even the most benign forms of open-ended psychotherapy for gender-confused children, many of whom have other psychological problems.

The proposed ACT bill goes much further than the similar Queensland law and is potentially far more damaging to fundamental human rights, particularly the rights of parents.

This is because the ACT bill, unlike the Queensland law, is not aimed solely at psychotherapists and other medical personnel. It is aimed at everybody, even parents. Any parent potentially could be charged with an offence if they try to prevent an adolescent or a child — even an underage child — from seeking trans-affirmative treatment, and there is even a provision to allow underage children to agree to their own treatment without parental consent. What is more, it penalises anyone who wishes to remove a child to another jurisdiction for treatment. The penalties are harsh, including incarceration and unlimited fines.

Outmoded and sometimes cruel gay conversion therapies, often based on aversion techniques, are universally rejected in psychiatric circles. However open-ended therapy, particularly for children displaying transgender traits, which helps them to conform to their biological sex and usually attempts to treat their underlying psychological disorders, such as autism, is perfectly valid. But this is not what the transgender lobby wants — it wants one route only, the path to a gender reassignment clinic.

Dianna Kenny, formerly professor of psychology at the University of Sydney and currently in private psychotherapy practice, has pointed out that the legislation is fatally flawed by virtue of its “illogical and ill-founded ideological base”. It is based on the ideology of gender identity rather than gender-related psychological treatment. Consequently it is a minefield, particularly for those treating children and adolescents.

“The legislation does not specify how these proposed changes to clinical practice in transgender therapy will be administered, or how professional bodies overseeing the work of health practitioners will interact with those administering the proposed legislation,” Kenny says.

She warns it is “steeped in errors” but, most important, it also has not defined the term conversion therapy with any rigour or accuracy and “deceitfully conflates lesbian and gay issues with transgender issues”.

The transgender lobby seeks to make the validation of gender identity at all costs the only approach and has used suicide statistics to bolster its claims. Lately, however, this ideology has had a few setbacks.

The Tavistock in London is being sued by adults who underwent reassignment surgery as children, and Swedish research claiming children who underwent gender reassignment surgery were less prone to suicide, which has been used as evidence by clinicians in Australia to make surgery more easily available, has been proved false.

The August 1 edition of the American journal of Psychiatry had to publish a rare correction, an editorial and letters from a dozen psychiatrists, clinicians and researchers in four countries identifying multiple flaws in the 2019 Swedish paper, with the conclusion that the data showed “no improvement in mental health after surgery or hormonal treatment”.

It is obvious that the ACT government pushed this bill under the COVID radar. It has ploughed on with this legislation while the federal government is distracted by the crisis and the federal Health Minister’s inquiry into gender reassignment for very young children has not begun. A cross-section of stakeholders, including independent schools, was sent a fact sheet describing the proposed ban but was given only 18 working days to submit feedback. This was said to be in lieu of the standard public consultation “due to the ongoing impact of COVID-19”.

However, the uproar during the past week when news of the bill became widespread has, one hopes, allowed the ACT government time to put in acceptable amendments and clearer definitions. As the independent schools rightly state: “This approach is unacceptable for a law which allows for complaints to go through the ACT Human Rights Commission, as well as the creation of criminal offences, the regulation of health practitioners, and the treatment of ‘conversion’ prac­tices as a form of child abuse or neglect.”

Those of us who live in the territory have become almost blase about the never-ending quest of the Labor-Green alliance, with a majority of one, to refashion the way we live, and now the way we think. But the legal tactics of the trans lobby mean the rest of Australia also may have to get used to it — sooner rather than later.



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

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

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

23 August, 2020 

What the Numbers Say About Gender Differences: Data on abilities reveal a great deal of overlap for men and women

Writing below (from the WSJ), EUGENIA CHENG offers a good primer on the subject of sex differences in IQ.  When one gets little more than ill-informed raves from Leftists, Dr. Cheng is to be congratulated for her cool reason.

Her basic point is that differences in abilities do exist but are mostly too small to be important.  And she tackles the one question within the field that is undoubtedly important:  Differences in mathematical ability.  All psychometricians cheerfully agree that women are better in verbal ability.  Men regularly lose arguments with their wives. But the shortage of women in STEM fields does seem to be of concern, perhaps because of the high prestige and good pay of some jobs in those fields

So the big point in her article is the small difference in math ability scores shown in the findings by Janet Hyde.  I am afraid, however that the Hyde findings cannot be accepted uncritically.  Her findings make little allowance for the importance of age in these studies.  Using the Progressive Matrices, Lynn and Irwing showed a vast gap in ability among adults but almost no difference among children up to age 14. Adolescents aged 15 to 19 were intermediate.

Most studies of mathematical ability do not separate out age in that way so much of the variability in their results can be attributed to that failure.  But the important thing is that  Hyde's reliance on a great grab-bag of ages in her tabulations makes her work largely irrelevant.  If she really wanted to get at adult differences, she should have studied adult differences alone.  Some genetic studies reveal in fact that genetic differences don't reveal themselves fully until around age 30.

At any event, to cut a long story short, if the age differences shown in the PM's are reflected in mathematical ability, we would expect only small differences between males and females in initial enrolments in mathematical courses, followed by very large achievement gaps in the long slow grind through university studies and into the professions.  And that is roughly what we find.  The male-female difference in mathematical ability is definitely non-trivial

But what makes it non-trivial?  In her final paragraph, Dr Cheng makes the challenging point that "it is logically flawed to infer a biological difference from a statistical difference". But if not that which?  The twin studies are certainly univocal:  The ability gap is inborn.  A genetic difference may not be inferable from the studies she quotes but many other studies do indicate a genetic basis for the differences

IN 2005 LAWRENCE SUMMERS, then the president of Harvard, caused an uproar by appearing to suggest that the lack of women professors in math and science might arise from biological differences. Fifteen years on, a gender imbalance in these fields persists and the arguments rage on. I believe math can help us to progress. The discipline of math involves, among other things, ironing out ambiguities and providing clear definitions for comparisons. Men and women are not homogenous groups of people who all behave in the same way, so we need ways to understand whole sets of data.

Averages are one well-known way; we can compare how men and women do at something “on average.” There are different types of averages: The mean is where we add up all results and divide by the total number of people, and the median is the 50th percentile that tells us that half the people rank above it and half rank below. For example, the mean height of men in the U.S. is 5 feet 9 inches, and for women it is 5 inches less, but plenty of women are taller than plenty of men. Averages don’t tell us much about differences among entire sets of data because they neglect how widely the data are spread. That spread of data can be studied via the standard deviation, which is calculated from the distance that each data point ranges from the mean. For a standard bell curve, a distance of “one standard deviation” on ei- ther side of the mean always comprises a fixed proportion of the results, around 70%.

The standard deviation for height is around 2.5 inches, so the mean heights of men and women are about two standard deviations apart. Thus, around 95% of women are shorter than the average for men, but there is still a noticeable overlap. For data sets that differ by one standard deviation or less, there is more substantial overlap. Average marathon times for men and women differ by about 30 minutes, for instance. That sounds like a lot, but is only half the standard deviation of one hour—and the fastest women run marathons twice as fast as average men.

Height and running times are particularly easy to measure, but men and women have also been compared in broader areas of behavior, such as mathematical skills, aggression and self-esteem. In 2005, Jane Shibley Hyde collated a large collection of meta-analyses of these differences. In her book “Inferior,” Angela Saini sums up the results: “In every case, except for throwing distance and vertical jumping, females are less than one standard deviation apart from males. On many measures, they are less than a tenth of a standard deviation apart, which is indistinguishable in everyday life.” For example, “mathematics problem solving” was found to be better in men by just 0.08 standard deviations; interestingly, women were found to outperform men at “mathematics concepts” by 0.03 standard deviations.

Men showed more self-esteem by a range of 0.04 to 0.21 standard deviations, increasing through adolescence; they were found more likely to make “intrusive interruptions” by 0.33 standard deviations. The differences may be interesting, but they are also very small. The differences within each gender are greater than the differences between genders, so gender is not a good predictor of these behaviors. Such comparisons are blurred, of course, by issues beyond the reach of mathematics. Many of the behaviors studied are much harder to define and measure than height or marathon times and involve some mix of biological and sociological influences. But it is logically flawed to infer a biological difference from a statistical difference. Mathematics provides us with powerful tools, but we have to know their uses and limits.


Debunking 10 Myths About the US Postal Service

In 2020, we’re used to seeing falsehoods and misinformation spreading like wildfire online. Typically, they’re linked to breaking news, hot-button social issues, or scandals.

The biggest focal point for online political drama today is an unlikely one; namely, the U.S. Postal Service. Representatives from both parties, conspiracy theorists, and even singer Taylor Swift are weighing in on the unsexy subject of mail.

Make no mistake: The Postal Service faces real challenges that require congressional action to solve. Yet, while genuine differences exist between the left and the right about how best to address the problems, that’s not an excuse for melodramatic rumor-mongering.

With the House convening a special session specifically to address issues involving the Postal Service, it’s important to separate myths from reality.

MYTH No. 1: The Postal Service is removing sorting machines to sabotage delivery

REALITY: The volume of mail has plunged in recent decades, due to the spread of electronic communication. As a result, the amount of infrastructure needed to manage the flow of mail also has declined.

The Postal Service has been consolidating operations for years to reduce costs, a practice that predates President Donald Trump.

MYTH No. 2: The Postal Service is removing collection boxes to block mail-in ballots.

REALITY: The Postal Service has more than 141,000 blue collection boxes spread across the country. Those boxes are moved regularly from low-demand to high-demand areas to maximize efficiency.

Photos of those boxes on the backs of trucks are part of standard operating procedure, rather than proof of a nefarious, anti-election plot.

Despite that, the Postal Service has decided to pause any further moving of boxes until after the election as a result of the online panic.

MYTH No. 3: The Postal Service is locking collection boxes to prevent public access.

REALITY: Locked caps are sometimes put on collection boxes in areas where there is a rash of mail theft. Employees place the caps after the final pickup of the day and remove them in the morning, since collection box theft is overwhelmingly done at night.

This practice also predates the Trump administration.

MYTH No. 4: The Postal Service could go bankrupt before the election without a $25 billion bailout.

REALITY: Although some were concerned that the COVID-19 pandemic would push the Postal Service over the financial edge, revenues have been stable, thanks to a big increase in package deliveries.

In addition, Congress provided a $10 billion loan to the Postal Service earlier this year.

As a result, there’s virtually no scenario where the Postal Service goes bankrupt this year, meaning that a proposed $25 billion bailout has no reasonable connection to the coming election.

However, Congress shouldn’t view this fact as a reason to be complacent when it comes to passing reforms.

MYTH No. 5: The Postal Service plans to triple postage rates on mailed ballots.

REALITY: The Postal Service provided commonsense guidance to state and local governments regarding how to handle time-sensitive ballot requests. This guidance was already in the works before Postmaster General Louis DeJoy began his job.

Most mail-in ballot requests are made weeks or even months in advance, and thus can safely be sent using low-cost, second-class mail.

However, some places allow for mail-in ballot requests a mere four days before the election. In those situations, it makes sense to use full-cost, first-class mail to ensure that voters get their ballots on time.

The idea that this sensible guidance amounts to extortion by DeJoy should be laughable, except that it has been promoted by the likes of Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.

MYTH No. 6: Postal Service delivery changes are illegal “sabotage” by the postmaster general.

REALITY: DeJoy, who assumed the postmaster general’s post in June, was selected in large part due to his decades of experience as CEO of New Breed Logistics, a supply chain company.

The logistics industry’s focus is on maximizing cost-efficiency and on-time performance, both of which the Postal Service needs to improve. With that in mind, DeJoy has undertaken initiatives aimed at reducing costs and improving service levels.

It’s too early to tell whether these changes will be successful, and DeJoy has announced a suspension until after the election. While the media reliably reports alarming anecdotes from postal union officials who oppose cost-cutting efforts, data shows that postal performance has not yet experienced a significant change under DeJoy.

Representatives from both parties have expressed disapproval of efforts to pull the Postal Service out of chronic annual deficits.

That’s part of a long-term trend of Congress’ imposing unsustainable mandates for the sake of its own political benefit. Liberating the Postal Service from those mandates would be the best path forward.

MYTH No. 7: The Postal Service needs more money to process mailed ballots.

Leaders of both parties wrongly have suggested that the Postal Service lacks the resources to handle the millions of ballots that will be sent through the mail this year—meaning that it will require additional taxpayer funding.

REALITY: The Postal Service handled about 2.75 billion items per week in 2019, with spikes at various times of the year, such as the holiday season.

Mail-in ballots will represent at most a few percentage points of total volume this fall, even with an expected increase in requests due to COVID-19.

Further, given that regular mail volume has dropped in 2020, the Postal Service has excess processing capacity. It does not need additional resources for the election.

MYTH No. 8: The postmaster general “massacred” Postal Service management.

REALITY: When DeJoy took over in June, there was a modest amount of personnel change within the top levels of Postal Service management. Much of that involved internal promotions. Senior departing staff were replaced by experienced employees.

New leadership at the top of a large organization almost always includes some amount of change underneath, and the Postal Service is no exception.

The change is similar to what happened when previous postmaster generals took over, rather than a heavy-handed “takeover.”

MYTH No. 9: The Constitution requires a government-run Postal Service.

REALITY: Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution authorizes Congress to establish post offices and to provide for “postal roads.” That doesn’t mean that post offices and roads are mandated, or that badly needed cost savings are a constitutional crisis.

MYTH No. 10: The Postal Service loses money only because of unfair funding requirements.

REALITY: The Postal Service is weighed down by exceedingly high employee compensation costs, which averaged more than $97,000 per worker in 2019. Part of that includes a retiree health plan, which has obligations similar to a pension.

Bipartisan legislation passed in 2006 required that the Postal Service prefund the retiree health plan like a pension plan, with money deposited as an employee earns future benefits. That’s intended to ensure that there’s money to provide for the health coverage when employees retire.

Unfortunately, the Postal Service has failed to uphold its funding obligations, leaving the plan $69 billion in the hole as of last fall.

Furthermore, the Postal Service would have lost more than $4 billion in 2019 alone even if it had not paid a penny into the health plan.

Claims that the health benefit prefunding is “unfair” ignore the fact that retiree health benefits are uncommon (especially outside government) and ignore the fact that postal employees are entitled to the benefits.

One alternative to prefunding is allowing the health plan to accumulate massive liabilities, which would guarantee an even bigger financial crisis than what the Postal Service is already facing.

That would be irresponsible and unfair for both postal employees and taxpayers alike.

The other alternative to prefunding would be to turn the Postal Service into a standard government agency, which is the stated goal of many Democrats.

A federal bailout of the Postal Service would be the first step toward placing yet another massive burden on U.S. taxpayers.

Rather than allowing costs and deficits to grow unchecked, Congress should pass reforms that would enable the Postal Service to raise revenue and lower costs, stabilizing its shaky finances.

From there, we should have a robust debate about the future of the Postal Service and whether its current structure makes sense.

Meanwhile, the sooner we stop spreading unfounded rumors about the Postal Service, the more likely we will be to reach agreement on solutions.


'We are going to show cops were just doing their jobs'

I have said that from the beginning

 Attorney for one of the officers charged in George Floyd's death outlines his defense argument after claiming the black man killed himself by overdosing on fentanyl

The attorney for one of the Minneapolis police officers charged in George Floyd's killing says he's going to prove the cops were just doing their jobs after claiming earlier this week that the black man killed himself by overdosing on fentanyl.

Thomas Lane, 37, is one of the three officers charged with aiding and abetting murder for holding down Floyd's legs during his May 25 fatal arrest.

Another officer, Derek Chauvin, is charged with murder after body cam showed him kneeling on Floyd's neck for nearly nine minutes as he pleaded: 'I can't breathe'.

Lane's attorney Earl Gray, who has been fighting to get the charges dropped, has since outlined his defense argument, saying he doesn't believe there is enough evidence to convict his client.

'We are going to show that my client and the other cops were doing their jobs,' Gray told the Los Angeles Times.

'None of these guys - even Chauvin - actually killed him. He killed himself.'

In a memorandum filed in court on Monday, Gray claimed that Floyd swallowed a 'lethal dose' of fentanyl as he was resisting arrest.

He plans to use that as the basis for his defense argument, saying he will rely on toxicology and autopsy reports and bodycam footage to prove his case.

Legal experts have since said the high-profile case will not be a 'slam dunk' for the prosecution.

'This is not a slam dunk for the prosecution and not an easy case, especially for the higher-degree homicide charges,' Philip Stinson, a Bowling Green State University criminologist, told the outlet.

'If this case goes to trial and an officer testifies on his own behalf, it is possible there is reasonable doubt there for jurors.'

The attorney pointed to bodycam footage of the arrest in which he claims Floyd had a 'white spot on the left side' of his tongue when Lane and another officer first approached him following reports he had used a fake $20 bill to buy cigarettes at a convenience store.

Gray has claimed in the memo that Floyd intentionally ingested '2 milligrams of fentanyl, a lethal dose' after Lane ordered him to put his hands up to be taken into custody.

'All he had to do is sit in the police car, like every other defendant who is initially arrested. While attempting to avoid his arrest, all by himself, Mr Floyd overdosed on Fentanyl,' the filing says.

'Given his intoxication level, breathing would have been difficult at best. Mr Floyd's intentional failure to obey commands, coupled with his overdosing, contributed to his own death.'

A medical examiner's report and a separate independent autopsy both ruled that Floyd's death was a homicide and that he died from asphyxiation.

The Hennepin County Medical Examiner added in its report that Floyd had 'recent methamphetamine use' and 'fentanyl intoxication' - along with hypertension and coronary artery disease - all of which were possible contributing factors to his death.

In the court filing, Lane's attorney argued that the neck constraint used by Chauvin was not excessive as he argued that the tissue in Floyd's neck wasn't damaged.

He also pointed to Floyd's criminal background and past alleged drug use as to why his clients charges should be dropped.

Citing a May 2019 arrest in Minneapolis, Gray argued that Floyd had to be physically removed from a car where police found oxycodone, cocaine and rock cocaine.

The court records do not state if Floyd was charged in that arrest.

Lane's attorney has previously argued that Floyd should not have resisted arrest and that he should of obeyed the orders of the officers.

He has also previously said in interviews that it was 'clearly evident' Floyd was 'under the influence of some kind of drug' at the time of his arrest.

Lane was one of the two officers who were first on the scene following the reports that Floyd had attempted to pass a fake $20 bill to buy cigarettes at a convenience store.

Chauvin and a fourth officer, Tou Thao, were called in to assist.

All four officers were fired the day after Floyd's death.

Lane's attorney is expected to argue a case for dismissing the charges against the fired officer during a court hearing scheduled for September 11.

It comes after a Minnesota judge ruled Lane's bodycam footage could be released publicly after DailyMail.com revealed leaked footage.

The judge had previously restricted the viewing of Lane - and Kueng's bodycam footage - allowing it to be viewed only by appointment in the county courthouse.


Australia: Two black women who flew to Perth from Adelaide without an exemption before sneaking out of hotel quarantine to party with a rapper have vowed to return to the city 'by force' after they were sent home in disgrace

Law-breaking by blacks is very common.  It is a pity that we have to import such behaviour

Isata Jalloh, 19, and Banchi Techana, 22, narrowly avoided jail time after flying into Western Australia on Monday and fleeing the Novotel Hotel to 'hang out with friends' and make the most of their 'vacation'.

The pair left the Murray St hotel via an emergency stairwell at about 1.30am on Tuesday but were caught by police at a unit in Coolbellup, in the south of Perth.

Jalloh and Techana were escorted back to hotel quarantine before making obscene gestures as they were placed on a taxpayer-funded return flight to South Australia on Friday.

Once on the ground in Adelaide, the duo refused to apologise for their selfish behaviour.

'Sorry for what? Did we commit a crime? Did we kill anyone?' Jalloh told Nine News before claiming they had 'no idea' there were travel restrictions in place.

The pair said they also planned to return to Western Australia in two months time, 'once coronavirus is over'. 'We will enter by force,' Jalloh added.

During their trip, the women were told they would need to quarantine before returning to Adelaide after flying into Perth without permission.

The pair instead left quarantine a few hours later and caught a taxi to the party.

Police called Jalloh's mobile phone to ask where the women were but she laughed and hung up on the officer.

The mobile phone signal was then used to track both women to the flat.

The women were arrested at about 8.30am and were taken into custody for two days.

They appeared in Perth Magistrates Court on Thursday and pleaded guilty to the breach.

Jalloh was handed a $5,000 fine and Techana, who also admitted to obstructing an officer while in custody, was given an eight-month sentence, suspended for 12 months.

WA Police said the women arrived in Perth intending to holiday and visit family but were directed to quarantine until return flights could be arranged.

The court heard Techana, a dancer, had moved to Perth for a 'fresh start' and planned to bring over her one-year-old daughter.

Jalloh's lawyer also argued the 19-year-old had travelled from Queensland to South Australia without self-isolating and did not understand WA's coronavirus measures.

Magistrate Ben White said he believed the women were aware of the border restrictions.

'It's difficult to think anyone in the current climate could be in the dark about those sorts of things,' he said. 'There's risks to health, there's risks of this sort of behaviour resulting in further lockdowns.'


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

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

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

21 August, 2020 

Are Today’s Leftists Truly Marxists?

Most people who call themselves Marxists know very little of Karl Marx’s life and have never read his three-volume “Das Kapital.”

Volume I was published in 1867, the only volume published before Marx’s death in 1883. Volumes II and III were later edited and published in his name by his friend and collaborator Friedrich Engels.

Most people who call themselves Marxists have only read his 1848 pamphlet “The Communist Manifesto,” which was written with Engels.

Marx is a hero to many labor union leaders and civil rights organizations, including leftist groups like Black Lives Matter, Antifa, and some Democratic Party leaders. It is easy to be a Marxist if you know little of his life. Marx’s predictions about capitalism and the “withering away of the state” turned out to be grossly wrong.

What most people do not know is that Marx was a racist and an anti-Semite.

When the U.S. annexed California after the Mexican-American War, Marx wrote: “Without violence nothing is ever accomplished in history.” Then he asked, “Is it a misfortune that magnificent California was seized from the lazy Mexicans who did not know what to do with it?”

Engels added: “In America we have witnessed the conquest of Mexico and have rejoiced at it. It is to the interest of its own development that Mexico will be placed under the tutelage of the United States.”

Many of Marx’s racist ideas were reported in “Karl Marx, Racist,” a book written by Nathaniel Weyl, a former member of the U.S. Communist Party.

In a July 1862 letter to Engels, in reference to his socialist political competitor, Ferdinand Lassalle, Marx wrote:

It is now completely clear to me that he, as is proved by his cranial formation and his hair, descends from the Negroes from Egypt, assuming that his mother or grandmother had not interbred with a nigger. Now this union of Judaism and Germanism with a basic Negro substance must produce a peculiar product. The obtrusiveness of the fellow is also nigger-like.

In 1887, Paul Lafargue, who was Marx’s son-in-law, was a candidate for a council seat in a Paris district that contained a zoo. Engels claimed that Paul had “one-eighth or one-twelfth nigger blood.”

In an April 1887 letter to Lafargue’s wife, Engels wrote, “Being in his quality as a nigger, a degree nearer to the rest of the animal kingdom than the rest of us, he is undoubtedly the most appropriate representative of that district.”

Marx’s anti-Semitic views were no secret. In 1844, he published an essay titled “On the Jewish Question.” He wrote that the worldly religion of Jews was “huckstering” and that the Jew’s god was “money.” Marx’s view of Jews was that they could only become an emancipated ethnicity or culture when they no longer exist.

Just one step short of calling for genocide, Marx said, “The classes and the races, too weak to master the new conditions of life, must give way.”

Marx’s philosophical successors shared ugly thoughts on blacks and other minorities. Che Guevara, a hero of the left, was a horrific racist. He wrote in his 1952 memoir “The Motorcycle Diaries”: “The Negro is indolent and lazy and spends his money on frivolities, whereas the European is forward-looking, organized, and intelligent.”

British socialist Beatrice Webb griped in The New Statesmen about declining birthrates among so-called higher races, which would lead to “a new social order” that would be created “by one or other of the colored races, the Negro, the Kaffir, or the Chinese.”

The Soviets espoused the same “Jewish world conspiracy” as the Nazis. Josef Stalin embarked upon a campaign that led to the deaths of Jewish intellectuals for their apparent lack of patriotism.

By the way, the Soviet public was not told that Marx was Jewish. Academics who preach Marxism to their classes fail to tell their students that his ideology has led to the slaughter of tens of millions of people. What’s worse, they fail to even feign concern over this fact.

White liberals are useful idiots. Black Lives Matter, Antifa, and other progressive groups use the plight of poor blacks to organize left-leaning, middle-class, college-educated, guilt-ridden suburbanite whites. These people who topple statues and destroy public and private property care about minorities as much as their racist predecessors.

Their goal is the acquisition and concentration of power and Americans have fallen hook, line, and sinker for their phony virtue signaling.


Trump rolls back suburban housing policies, as Biden would expand them

In their typically disruptive way, The Democrats were trying to put blacks into white neighborhoods

President Trump started a war of words with Joe Biden's presidential campaign on Twitter. According to the president's tweet, he expects to win the votes of 'suburban housewives' over Biden, a voting bloc he thinks will help him win the election come November.

President Trump said Wednesday the "suburban housewife" will vote for him over his presumptive Democratic rival Joe Biden -- citing his administration’s efforts to roll back an Obama-era low-income housing regulation that he says Biden would “reinstall... in a bigger form.”

“The ‘suburban housewife' will be voting for me. They want safety & are thrilled that I ended the long running program where low income housing would invade their neighborhood,” he tweeted.

“Biden would reinstall it, in a bigger form, with Corey [sic] Booker in charge,” he said.

He was referring to the Obama-era 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing regulation, which required local jurisdictions to assess and address racial and economic disparities. The Trump administration suspended the rule and last month moved to abolish it.

An explainer on the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) website said the program’s goal is “replacing segregated living patterns with truly integrated and balanced living patterns, transforming racially and ethnically concentrated areas of poverty into areas of opportunity, and fostering and maintaining compliance with civil rights and fair housing laws.”

Biden, meanwhile, has stood by the regulation and has promised to abolish zoning regulations that limit the housing supply and keep house prices up in some areas.

“Exclusionary zoning has for decades been strategically used to keep people of color and low-income families out of certain communities,” Biden said in his plan.

His language in his plan borrows from a bill introduced by Sen. Booker, D-N.J., that would withhold federal funds for community development and transportation infrastructure from localities that don’t reform their zoning regulations to allow for more housing to be built.

His plan would also expand the use of Section 8 housing vouchers, enact laws to prohibit landlords from discriminating against those who pay with vouchers and establish tax incentives to build affordable housing.

The Biden campaign on Wednesday responded to Trump's tweet.

"Donald Trump's presidency is melting down after his failed, divisive, erratic leadership has cost over 160,000 American lives, tens of millions of jobs, and left the United States the hardest-hit country in the world by COVID-19," Rapid Response Director Andrew Bates said.

"As he struggles in vain attempts to tear the American people apart and distract the country from his devastating mismanagement with clumsy, bigoted lies, he's only further discrediting himself -- and proving that he's dumbfounded after Joe Biden's selection of a strong running mate who he himself said not two weeks ago would be a 'fine choice,'" he said.

Trump has repeatedly in recent weeks used the debate over housing to accuse Biden of wanting to destroy suburban communities -- rhetoric that his critics have accused of being racially charged.

“Your home will go down in value and crime rates will rapidly rise,” Trump said in July. “People have worked all their lives to get into a community, and now they’re going to watch it go to hell. Not going to happen, not while I’m here.”


Everything the Left Touches It Ruins. Now Add Science

More than two years ago, I wrote a column titled “Whatever the Left Touches It Ruins.” I listed eight examples:

— The universities.

— The arts: music, art and architecture.

— Sports.

— Mainstream Judaism, Protestantism and Catholicism.

— Race relations.

— Women’s happiness.

— Children’s innocence.

— And, perhaps most disturbingly, America’s commitment to free speech.

One should now add the sciences.

The COVID-19 pandemic has hastened the left’s ruining of science. This had already begun with the left’s attacks on “objectivity,” the most essential value in science — the very thing that makes science possible. The left declares objectivity, which it now puts in quotation marks, a characteristic of white supremacy.

One example is that science departments in universities throughout America have declared their intention to hire physicists, biologists and other scientists based on gender and race, not scientific expertise. A few years ago, all five candidates on the shortlist of applicants to the physics department of the University of California at San Diego were females, “leading one male candidate with a specialty in extragalactic physics,” reported Heather Mac Donald, “to wonder why the school had even solicited applications from Asian and white men.”

Mac Donald updated her findings in a piece published this week: “The dean of the Jacobs School of Engineering at the University of California, San Diego, pronounced himself ‘absolutely dedicated’ to turning the engineering school into an ‘anti-racist organization.'”

A recent example was the declaration by more than 1,000 doctors and other health care providers that despite all their previous warnings against public gatherings as health risks: “As public health advocates, we do not condemn these gatherings (mass protests against racism) as risky for COVID-19 transmission. We support them as vital to the national public health.”

Yet another example of leftism overwhelming medical science is the medical profession’s denial of the benefits of hydroxychloroquine and zinc in the early days of a COVID-19 infection. That physicians, including the Food and Drug Administration, would label a drug dangerous that has been used safely for more than half a century, and by many thousands (such as those with rheumatoid arthritis or lupus) every day for decades, is a medical and moral scandal. The medical profession has placed politics not only ahead of science but also ahead of saving lives. The medical profession, the FDA and the CDC have lost the faith of half of the American people and, over time, will lose the faith of the majority of Americans. It is difficult to envision the medical profession regaining its credibility in this generation.

One of the world’s most prestigious medical and scientific journals, The Lancet in the U.K., withdrew an article it had published that dismissed the effectiveness of hydroxychloroquine in treating COVID-19 patients. The article contained made-up data. As The New York Times reported, Dr. Richard Horton, the editor in chief of The Lancet, called the paper retracted by his journal a “fabrication” and “a monumental fraud.”

The journal published the fraudulent study about the alleged dangers of hydroxychloroquine because of pressure from pharmaceutical companies, which have nothing to gain financially from widespread use of hydroxychloroquine, a cheap, generic drug, and because the journal loathes President Donald Trump, who, when the first reports of successful treatment with hydroxychloroquine surfaced, had announced use of the drug could save lives. Horton had labelled Trump’s withdrawal of U.S. funding of the World Health Organization “a crime against humanity” after the WHO’s politicization of the coronavirus, including behaving as a puppet of the Chinese Communist Party when it condemned Trump’s Jan. 31 ban on travel from China.

The number of Americans killed by the medical boards, the pharmaceutical boards, the FDA and the CDC for not allowing doctors to prescribe hydroxychloroquine in the early days following a patient’s diagnosis with COVID-19 and outside of a hospital setting, and the number killed by the doctors who could but would not prescribe hydroxychloroquine, is likely in the tens of thousands. On my radio show, Yale University epidemiologist Dr. Harvey Risch said, “Because we were blocked from using it (hydroxychloroquine) in the United States to the present point, probably at least 100,000 people have died.”

Based on the retracted study in The Lancet, The Washington Post headlined “Hydroxychloroquine Drug Promoted by Trump as Coronavirus ‘Game-Changer’ Increasingly Linked to Deaths.” And social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter immediately remove any citation of a scientist who promotes hydroxychloroquine.

A fourth example is the American Psychological Association, or the APA, choosing leftism over psychology in declaring, “40 years of research (show that) traditional masculinity is psychologically harmful and that socializing boys to suppress their emotions causes damage that echoes both inwardly and outwardly.”

The one good thing to come out of the APA’s pathologizing masculinity is that people searching for a competent psychotherapist for themselves or their child now have an easy method by which to identify the incompetent: Simply ask the prospective therapist if he or she agrees with the APA statement. If they do, or if they merely hesitate to distance themselves from it, you know you want another therapist.
Forthcoming columns will deal with more areas of life ruined by the left, including, most troubling of all, America itself.

As seen in their treatment of the statues of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, the left can tear down, but it cannot build.


Stop America’s Endless Kristallnacht Before It Destroys Our Country

For those who have had an, alas, typical American education and are unfamiliar with Kristallnacht (“Crystal Night”), when Hitler’s paramilitary “Sturmabteilung” (SA)—literally Storm Detachment—broke a lot more than windows on Nov. 9-10, 1938, here’s just a few words of description from Wikipedia:

“Jewish homes, hospitals, and schools were ransacked as attackers demolished buildings with sledgehammers. Rioters destroyed 267 synagogues throughout Germany, Austria, and the Sudetenland. Over 7,000 Jewish businesses were damaged or destroyed, and 30,000 Jewish men were arrested and incarcerated in concentration camps.”

Though lasting but two days, what happened was horrifying. Then, as we know, it got worse. Unchecked, these things tend to.

America has been in its own version of Crystal Night for many months now, from broken windows to looting to destruction of myriad stores and other places of business, police stations, and government edifices, not to mention considerable physical harm to persons.

Although not yet of Nazi (i.e., National Socialist) proportions, it’s pretty bad and doesn’t seem to be getting better.

For the most part, nothing is being done about it, especially on the state and municipal levels. As in Nazi Germany, it’s unchecked.

Furthermore, the U.S. populace, as it did in 1930s Germany, is becoming inured to the violence. A video from Aug. 14 of remarkably passive Seattle citizens looking on as Antifa wreaks havoc to their city says it all. (It’s worth watching also for the confident bravura of the Antifa thugs and, it goes without saying, the absence of police.)

In other recent news reminiscent of Kristallnacht, the Ronald McDonald House in Chicago, where parents of hospitalized children stay, had its door smashed and windows broken by looters (if that’s what they were) on Aug. 9, preventing a 2-year old with stage four cancer from leaving for his birthday.

It’s hard to know how anyone would want to live in Chicago anymore.

Of course, these events and many others like them are barely being covered by our mainstream media. They don’t fit their narrative. Omertà must rule before the election.

Reading this article, the MSM would be appalled (and therefore dismissive) to find their work compared to that of their peers in Berlin in those times. (Suggested reading: William Shirer’s “Berlin Diary.”) But, although history may not repeat exactly, it does, as they say, rhyme.

Our media friends should look up the “Nach Hitler, uns”—after Hitler, us—appeasement movement of the German communist party at that time. I’ll wager most of them have never heard of it. If they click on the link, they’ll get an idea of what the result was.

These German people, too, thought of themselves as “progressive,” just as Antifa and Black Lives Matter claim to be. More exactly, they claim to be Marxists, at least the BLM leadership does. Antifa answers to anarchist… or something.

In reality, they are the two most reactionary groups to have appeared in this country in some time, what Orwell would have called “objectively pro-fascist.” They do nothing for the working class (ironically, that’s the police; they’re the real working class) or black people.

They ruin the lives of both, aided and abetted by the media and “progressive” elected officials who are among the most cowardly men and women in our country, refusing to support the basic safety of their citizens.

The nonstop character of this American Kristallnacht is gradually destroying our cities and, therefore, our country as we know it. Gov. Andrew Cuomo wants to bring the rich back to New York—good luck with that—while Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti watches people flee the Hollywood Hills and even Beverly Hills for safer outlying districts.

And those are the problems of the affluent. What about those who can’t afford to move? They are stuck dealing with perpetual violence, living among homeless junkies, and braindead political fanatics.

As I said, history can rhyme. It’s up to us to stop it.

UPDATE: I have received an email from a representative of Ronald McDonald House, who informs me that their camera footage shows only one individual “swinging a hammer one time and breaking one window” at their facility. I apologize for the exaggeration that was based on reporting I had read.

Needless to say, however, this is only the tip of an ugly iceberg for what has been going on in Chicago. On Aug. 14, 17 police officers were injured and 24 protesters arrested in protests that turned violent, including bashing policemen with skateboards.



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

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

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

20 August, 2020
The junk science cops use to decide you’re lying

THE TRAINING SESSION was billed as “cutting edge,” and dozens of law enforcement professionals signed up to learn about “New Tools for Detecting Deception” from a human lie detector who calls herself “Eyes for Lies.” Her real name is Renee Ellory, and she claims that she’s one of just 50 people identified by scientists as having the ability to spot deception “with exceptional accuracy.”

A flyer for the event, hosted by Wisconsin’s High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area — a federal program that supports law enforcement drug interdiction work — was included among a trove of law enforcement documents that were hacked and posted online in June under the title BlueLeaks. The promo copy leans heavily into Ellory’s skill at ferreting out deception in others. She is “exceptional at pinpointing a liar and can tell you why she doesn’t trust someone on the spot,” it reads. Training participants would learn how to “identify anger, contempt, and disgust before words are even spoken.” Course objectives were broad: Learn to differentiate between “real” and “fake emotional displays”; “recognize hidden emotions”; identify the “ways our subconscious brain leaks information when we lie”; “analyze body language that indicates deception”; gain tips to use when interviewing a psychopath; “identify the key features of expressions that reveal danger for you!”

Participants spanned the law enforcement spectrum and included the chief of a small police department, corrections officers, university cops, state troopers, various members of the Milwaukee Police Department as well as individuals from the U.S. Probation Office and the FBI. In surveys filled out after the training, which took place in November 2015, the common complaint was that there weren’t enough structured breaks; as one participant put it, “the mind can only absorb what the buttocks can tolerate.” But otherwise, a majority of the 82 respondents gave the training high marks. Participants wrote that they would incorporate what they’d learned into their police work. A number of them said the most valuable thing they learned was “the seven universal facial expressions that all people have all over the world as a good indicator” of lying, as one trainee put it.

It might seem reassuring that so many law enforcement officers found a skills training so valuable. But not in this case. That’s because Ellory’s lie detection training is based what many psychologists say are largely discredited theories, if not simply junk science. “It’s completely bogus,” said Jeff Kukucka, an assistant professor of psychology and law at Towson University who studies forensic confirmation bias, interrogations, and false confessions. “And what’s maybe more alarming about it … is that this isn’t new. We’ve known for quite a while that this stuff doesn’t work, but it’s still being peddled as if it does.”

The BlueLeaks documents contain numerous flyers for trainings offered to police agencies across the country. Many of them promote methods of interviewing and interrogation, lie detection, and detecting “danger,” such as Ellory’s, that rest on unsteady scientific ground and have been linked to false confessions and wrongful convictions. The documents offer a window into how various training methods perpetuate myths — subjective, hunch-based approaches to interpreting human behavior that are unreliable and have been discredited by leading psychologists — that police are then encouraged to use in crime solving.

The search for a foolproof method of lie detection has a “long history,” said Richard Leo, a professor of law and psychology at the University of San Francisco School of Law and an expert on interrogation practices. “The search for some way to be able to read body language, demeanor, vocal pitch, gestures and then infer with a high degree of accuracy whether someone is telling the truth.” It just doesn’t exist, he said. He likens many of the claims about human lie detection to claims of psychic ability. “This reminds me of psychics and the lottery. If there was a psychic and they could see what the lottery numbers are, that would just be gold, right? Why wouldn’t they win $400 million when the Powerball is up there?”

As the country has become increasingly focused on police reform in the wake of George Floyd’s killing by Minneapolis cops, experts say the movement should include reforms to the way police are trained to interview and interrogate suspects, witnesses, and victims to ensure they’re grounded in best practices supported by science. “Part of the distrust that you see between law enforcement and minority communities stems from the way that suspects, witnesses, victims, and family members are treated by detectives during the course of an investigation,” said Steven Drizin, co-director of the Center on Wrongful Convictions at Northwestern University’s Pritzker School of Law, who studies false confessions. Law enforcement training that isn’t based in science “just furthers the deterioration of the relationship between case officers and people in the community.”

In addition to Wisconsin’s HIDTA, police agencies in California, Georgia, Nevada, and Texas have promoted Ellory’s trainings, according to flyers found within the BlueLeaks files. One flyer boasts that Ellory has trained law enforcement in the “largest U.S. cities,” including “New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, San Antonio, Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Honolulu, Las Vegas, Reno, Key West — just to name a few.” In an email to The Intercept, Ellory said she has been training as Eyes for Lies since 2009 and estimates she’s reached between 2,500 and 3,000 law enforcement officers.

The problem is that what she’s teaching them has been widely discredited — an assertion Ellory vehemently denies. According to Ellory, she was one of 50 individuals identified as an “expert in deception” as part of the so-called Wizards Project, run by researchers associated with Paul Ekman, a professor at the University of California, San Francisco. The researchers studied thousands of people — from CIA and Secret Service agents to regular folks — to see who could best detect behavior associated with deception, a practice that relies heavily on the idea of universal facial expressions and so-called microexpressions that last mere fractions of a second. Ellory’s trainings rely on the validity of both concepts.

While the theory of universal expressions dates back to Charles Darwin, research has been mixed, and Ekman’s work in this area has been repeatedly challenged by scientists in recent years as unreliable, in part because of methodological issues.

Where microexpressions are concerned — also an area of Ekman’s studies — subsequent research has found them “rare and nondiagnostic,” Kukucka said, and that training individuals to see them doesn’t actually work.

Ultimately, Kukucka said, the individuals Ekman identified as exceptional human lie detectors were simply a result of chance. With the Wizards Project, the idea was to test thousands of people to identify those who scored “unusually” high on a lie detection test, Kukucka said. Out of 15,000 people, “they found 50 who were unusually good. And they thought maybe from those people’s knowledge they could reverse engineer — OK, well, what are these people doing that’s working? And then use that to figure out what actually works,” he explained. “The problem with that is, it’s a total artifact of just having a bunch of people and how probability works. If you flip 15,000 coins 10 times, you’re going to get a couple that come up heads all 10 times, but there’s really nothing different about those coins than any of the other coins, just dumb luck.”

Indeed, years of research has demonstrated that behavioral cues — like eye-blinking, arm-crossing, a voice rising or dropping in pitch — are simply not reliable indicators of deception. “A lot of ‘police science’ is really pseudoscience,” Drizin said. “Police officers do believe that they’re able to detect liars from truth-tellers at much higher rates that you and I are. And that’s just been proven not to be the case.” In fact, research has found that the odds of a person detecting deception in another are really no better than chance, and that while those who’ve been trained to do so feel more confident in their conclusions, they’re no more competent. “When police are trained in this false and misleading stuff, they become more confident, so they become more prone to error,” said Leo. “It’s just this loop, this dangerous loop.”

In an email exchange, Ellory first wrote that she wouldn’t have time to explain things to me unless I took one of her courses — her “master class” is currently priced at $1,950 per person — but then noted that she’s not “actively doing” classes right now.

In a subsequent email, she defended her trainings as being rooted in science but wrote that as a “rare expert,” she’s used to people not understanding that. “I find at times with my gift, it’s akin to seeing color in a world where other people live in a colorblind world. Seeing color is ‘real’ but trying to convince a color blind person color exists is nearly impossible,” she wrote. “I tell people in my classes what I teach will be common knowledge in 100 years, but we are still in the dark ages when it comes to understanding human behavior and deception,” she continued. “At a point, I learned, I can’t change the world alone. But I can educate those who are open to learning and they have thanked me endlessly.”

When asked whether it is appropriate to be training law enforcement officers who have power over individual liberty to use scientifically unproven techniques, Ellory retorted that she was “scientifically validated” by Ekman’s research. “I don’t need to reprove it to anyone.”

“You are saying that I shouldn’t teach because I can’t make people like me? Does that mean that Nobel prize winners, acclaimed scientists and researchers who achieve great things shouldn’t teach other people because other people may not reach the same success?” she asked. “Like Lance Armstrong should never coach because he could sustain a heart of 32 beats per minute and consume freakishly low oxygen, but others can’t — so it’s useless?”

“I don’t get that reasoning on any level,” she wrote. “I have insight into human behavior that most people have never considered, don’t understand and when I share it with them through demonstration and example it changes their world for the better. I don’t teach interrogation techniques. I teach people how to seek and find the truth.”

Kukucka called Ellory’s response bizarre. “They’re selling snake oil. I mean, let’s be honest,” he said. “They’re raking in money by selling snake oil to, unfortunately, people who have a lot of clout.”


‘Christianity Will Have Power’: How a Promise by Trump Bonded Him to White Evangelicals

In the excerpt below, the NYT offers an explanation of why evangelicals support Trump.  I think it is pretty right

SIOUX CENTER, Iowa — They walked to the sanctuary in the frozen silence before dawn, footsteps crunching over the snow. Soon, hundreds joined in line. It was January 2016, and the unlikely Republican front-runner, Donald J. Trump, had come to town.

Many were skeptical, and came to witness the spectacle for themselves. A handful stood in silent protest. But when the doors opened and the pews filled, Mr. Trump’s fans welcomed him by chanting his name. A man waved a “Silent Majority Stands With Trump” sign. A woman pointed a lone pink fingernail up to the sky.

In his dark suit and red tie, Mr. Trump stood in front of a three-story-tall pipe organ and waved his arms in time with their shouts: Trump, Trump, Trump.

The 67-minute speech Mr. Trump gave that day at Dordt University, a Christian college in Sioux Center, would become infamous, instantly covered on cable news and to this day still invoked by his critics.

But the line that gained notoriety — the promise that he “could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody” and “wouldn’t lose any voters” — overshadowed another message that morning. “I will tell you, Christianity is under tremendous siege, whether we want to talk about it or we don’t want to talk about it,” Mr. Trump said.

Christians make up the overwhelming majority of the country, he said. And then he slowed slightly to stress each next word: “And yet we don’t exert the power that we should have.”

If he were elected president, he promised, that would change. He raised a finger. “Christianity will have power,” he said. “If I’m there, you’re going to have plenty of power, you don’t need anybody else. You’re going to have somebody representing you very, very well. Remember that.”

When November came, they stood by him en masse: 81 percent of the county voted for him. And so did 81 percent of white evangelical voters nationwide.

Now, this group could be Mr. Trump’s best chance at re-election. The president’s response to the coronavirus pandemic has battered his political standing: He has trailed Joseph R. Biden Jr., the presumptive Democratic nominee, by nearly double digits for a month in national polls. Even among white evangelicals, his approval rating has dipped slightly. But 82 percent say they intend to vote for him, according to the Pew Research Center.

Evangelicals did not support Mr. Trump in spite of who he is. They supported him because of who he is, and because of who they are. He is their protector, the bully who is on their side, the one who offered safety amid their fears that their country as they know it, and their place in it, is changing, and changing quickly. White straight married couples with children who go to church regularly are no longer the American mainstream. An entire way of life, one in which their values were dominant, could be headed for extinction. And Mr. Trump offered to restore them to power, as though they have not been in power all along.

“You are always only one generation away from losing Christianity,” said Micah Schouten, who was born and raised in Sioux Center, recalling something a former pastor used to say. “If you don’t teach it to your children it ends. It stops right there.”

Ultimately Mr. Trump recognized something, said Lisa Burg, a longtime resident of nearby Orange City. It is a reason she thinks people will still support him in November.

“The one group of people that people felt like they could dis and mock and put down had become the Christian. Just the middle-class, middle-American Christians,” Ms. Burg said. “That was the one group left that you could just totally put down and call deplorable. And he recognized that, You know what? Yeah, it’s OK that we have our set of values, too. I think people finally said, ‘Yes, we finally have somebody that’s willing to say we’re not bad, we need to have a voice too.’”


For Journalists, History Started Yesterday

It always amazes me just how stupid reporters are. Maybe stupid isn’t the right word, ignorant is more like it. How do people who claim to be the arbiters of what is news not follow the news? Seems like knowing what you’re talking about would be an important component of journalism, especially since journalism considers itself “the first draft of history.” But for too many of these left-wing teleprompter readers and Democratic Party stenographers, history just started yesterday.

MSNBC anchor Katy Tur is known not for her depth of knowledge on important issues, but her basic ignorance of things that happened in her lifetime is disturbing. In a debate in 2017 with a Republican congressman (because why wouldn’t a “news” anchor debate a Republican?), she exposed how unaware she was of something that happened in 2012 – when then-President Barack Obama told then-Russian President Dmitry Medvedev to tell Vladimir Putin he’d have “more flexibility” after the election. It was news to Tur, whose excuse was, “To be fair, I didn't touch politics in 2012. I almost exclusively covered fires and shootings in NYC area.” Apparently New York City doesn’t have cable news or newspapers.

But all the ignorance of things that happened before today isn’t limited to television personalities. Colby Itkowitz, who covers national politics for the Washington Post, showed just how oblivious a reporter could be and still hold a job. Saturday, after President Trump signed executive orders related to tax policy and coronavirus relief, Colby tweeted, “Let's ponder the most played out question of the last four years, but can you imagine if Obama had broken up a congressional stalemate over funding by simply signing an executive order and saying it was so? (jinx @pbump).”

This is particularly stupid for a number of reasons. First, in tagging her co-worker Phillip Bump, she showed she was quite proud of beating him to this declaration, that this sort of talk is common around the Post. Second, President Obama changed large sections of Obamacare with the stroke of his magic pen well within her lifetime. Third, if history didn’t start until Trump was elected, you’d at least think a reporter covering national politics for a major newspaper would be aware of the legal challenges to the DACA program, especially since the Supreme Court just ruled on it in June.

All of these escaped Itkowitz’s notice, somehow. When her ignorance was made apparent to her, she did what all good “journalists” would do – deleted the tweet and pretended it never happened.

Lest you think it’s just the younger media types who are ignorant of history, the senior citizen-set appears to have a memory rivaling Joe Biden’s as well.

New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd wrote a column titled “No Wrist Corsages, Please,” Saturday about how it’s been since 1984 that Democrats had a man and a woman on their presidential ticket. “It’s hard to fathom, but it has been 36 years since a man and a woman ran together on a Democratic Party ticket, writes @MaureenDowd,” the Times tweeted about a column Down had written proclaiming the same.

I understand why liberals would want to forget the 2016 election, and why everyone would like to forget Hillary Clinton, but you’d think someone in the multi-person editorial process that takes place before anything gets published by the Times would have a memory of it. (Not to mention ignoring the 2008 Republican “mixed-gender ticket.) You’d be wrong. The correction, “An earlier version of this column incorrectly stated the history of the Democratic ticket. It has been 36 years since a man chose a woman to run as his vice-president on the Democratic ticket, not 36 years since a man and a woman ran together on a Democratic Party ticket,” is one for the record books.

These are but three examples of ignorance of recent history from people working in a profession noted for the smugness of its practitioners.

Sadly, journalism is important. Unfortunately, we aren’t getting any. We’re getting self-righteous lectures from arrogant know-nothings who, whenever possible, ignore their mistakes, which uniformly go in one direction – against Republicans. Is it any wonder that 86 percent of the public in a recent survey said they find either “a great deal” (49 percent) or “a fair amount” (37 percent) of bias in media? They used to at least pretend to be honest.

Of course, when you operate in an ever-shrinking bubble of likeminded colleagues, you don’t even notice the problem. A new study found “Beltway journalism 'may be even more insular than previously thought,'” which the authors say raises "'additional concerns about vulnerability to groupthink and blind spots.'”

If there’s no one in your circle who knows any better, you’ll never think you’re wrong and not know when you’ve crossed a line. If everyone you know is polishing their resume in the hope of getting a job in a Biden administration, you’d better update yours too. If Joe loses, you can fill that hole in your heart with the awards you’ll be showered with for your biased, incorrect reporting. And you don’t have to worry about being haunted by thoughts of betraying the ideals of your profession since history starts all over again tomorrow.


Australia: 'We are losing our rights over a virus with a 99% recovery rate': Defiant organiser of hippy drumming event at a Sydney beach vows to keep defying coronavirus restrictions

The organiser of a hippy drumming event has vowed to continue defying COVID-19  restrictions and labelled social distancing measures a 'totalitarian measure'.

Sydney Drummers founder, Curt Hannagan, organised a gathering that saw 200 people pack onto Mistral Point at Maroubra in the city's east on Sunday.

Mr Hannagan unleashed an explosive social media rant on Tuesday after he was fined $1,000 for breaching coronavirus restrictions.

'We are having our rights and freedoms taken away from us over a virus with a 99 per cent recovery rate,' Mr Hannagan wrote on Facebook.

Mr Hannagan, who also goes by Curt Alchemy, established a GoFundMe page to help pay for the event's fine and purchase new drumming equipment.

'Over 200 people gathered in Maroubra to collectively share their heart beat and connection to one another in a form of musical celebration for the human race and mother earth,' Mr Hannagan explained.    

He also added a post on the Sydney Drumming page that said the group would 'not submit to the current totalitarian measures here in Australia'. 

'These events are designed to heal ourselves, heal our trauma, and to create harmony within our body, mind and spirit,' Mr Hannagan said.

The drummer asked those who 'stand strong for you rights, for your freedoms' to 'donate any finances... so we can pay the fine and move forward.' He also shared plans to host another gathering and asked 'Who wants another secret location tribe fest in Sydney?'  'We will not submit, we will rise in community spirit,' Mr Hannagan said.

Maroubra residents called police after seeing the drumming party grow and officers arrived at about 6pm.

'Officers spoke with a 33-year-old man who was one of the organisers of the event.

'Police were able to disperse the crowd without incident,' a NSW Police spokeswoman told Daily Mail Australia.

NSW Police said they issued the 33-year-old man with a $1,000 fine on Monday for failing to comply with COVID-19 regulations.

Daily Mail Australia has contacted the event organisers for comment.

According to New South Wales Health regulations no more than 20 people are allowed to gather outside in a public place.

The state recorded three new coronavirus cases on Tuesday, bringing the total number of cases to 3,770. 

One was a returned traveller in hotel quarantine, one has been linked to the funeral cluster in South Western Sydney and another case remains under investigation.

There were 13,736 tests undertaken in the most recent 24 hour period and 122 people are being treated for coronavirus.



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

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

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

19 August, 2020 

'Scholar' Claims Landmarks of Western Architecture Were 'Stolen' from Islamic World

In yet another installment of what is apparently a never-ending series of articles designed to make their readers take no pride in their own culture and heritage, the UK’s Guardian on Thursday published a lengthy, breathlessly enthusiastic article entitled: “Looted landmarks: how Notre-Dame, Big Ben and St Mark’s were stolen from the east.”

They are beacons of western civilisation. But, says an explosive new book, the designs of Europe’s greatest buildings were plundered from the Islamic world – twin towers, rose windows, vaulted ceilings and all.

Plundered! Of course! When has the Judeo-Christian West done anything except steal, oppress, and kill?

The Guardian article highlights the “discoveries” of a “Middle East expert” named Diana Darke, author of a new book called (what else?) Stealing from the Saracens, which the Guardian’s Oliver Wainwright calls “an exhilarating, meticulously researched book that sheds light on centuries of borrowing.”

“Borrowing” is a more polite word than Diana Darke herself used, but otherwise Wainwright is completely on board with her project, reporting her dismay at finding that it was not common knowledge in the West that everything we have, everything we have done, everything we have made, has come from Islam: “I was astonished at the reaction,” she lamented. “I thought more people knew, but there seems to be this great gulf of ignorance about the history of cultural appropriation. Against a backdrop of rising Islamophobia, I thought it was about time someone straightened out the narrative.”

Sure. And who better to do that than the illustrious Diana Darke, who is often featured on the BBC, as well as in the Guardian. It’s easy to see why she would be the British intelligentsia’s favorite “Middle East expert”: her new book, with its ridiculous claims, is yet another example of the UK elite’s ongoing efforts to compel Britons to believe that Islam is part of their own culture and heritage, so that they will be shamed into fearing to oppose mass Muslim migration into Britain, as well as jihad violence and Sharia oppression of women and others. It’s just more of Britain’s continuing cultural suicide.

In this case, the deception and sleight of hand are clumsy and obvious. Note that the subtitle of the Guardian article claims that “the designs of Europe’s greatest buildings were plundered from the Islamic world.” A centerpiece of Diana Darke’s case for that is that “Notre-Dame’s architectural design, like all gothic cathedrals in Europe, comes directly from Syria’s Qalb Lozeh fifth-century church.”

A fifth-century church. Islam arose in the seventh and eighth centuries. What exactly does the design of a pre-Islamic church in Syria have to do with the Islamic world? Nothing. Nothing whatsoever. It just happens that the site of this church was conquered by Muslims several centuries after it was built, so for Diana Darke, the Guardian, and their luckless readers, this becomes an example of how the West “stole from” or “plundered” the Islamic world.

Even more ridiculous is the claim that the Dome of the Rock was the basis for church architecture in Europe, when the Dome of the Rock itself was patterned after the great cathedral in Constantinople, Hagia Sophia. St. Mark’s in Venice was also patterned after Hagia Sophia, although Darke claims it was based on the Dome of the Rock. The interior of St. Mark’s is covered on virtually every available space with Christian art, as was the interior of Hagia Sophia. Which is its more likely influence? If those who built St. Mark’s were imitating the Dome of the Rock, why didn’t they opt for a more austere interior?

This nonsense from Diana Darke is part of a much larger effort. Another example of the same cultural self-abnegation came last fall, when the British Museum ran a lavish exhibition called “Inspired by the East,” about how Western art had been massively influenced by Islamic art. Never mind that the Islamic influence on Western art was severely limited by the fact that Sharia forbids representation of the human form. That fact might have reflected negatively upon Islam and Sharia, and was left to the background.

Did the British Museum host an exhibition on how Western art influenced the Islamic world, a topic about which there is a great deal that could be said, ranging from the cultural appropriation of Byzantine church architecture to the stylistic similarities of Shi’ite iconography to Western art? Of course not. The objective here is to get Westerners to despise their own heritage, not revere it.

The British Museum, Diana Darke and the Guardian are doing the British public, and people all over the Western world, a grave disservice by misleading them about their own culture and heritage, and doing so in a way that is designed to render them complacent and defenseless in the face of a genuine threat: that of jihad violence and Sharia oppression of women and others.


President of NOW steps down amid racism allegations at feminist group

The president of the National Organization for Women (Now) has reportedly resigned following accusations of racism and a toxic work environment at America’s largest feminist group.

In an email to members of the organisation on Sunday night, citing health issues, Toni Van Pelt announced she will be leaving later this month and retiring, according to the Daily Beast.

Now did not immediately respond to a Guardian request for comment.

Vice-president Christian Nunes will reportedly replace Van Pelt as president of the group, which was founded in 1966 and has more than 500,000 members.

Van Pelt was elected in 2017. She reportedly wrote in her email that she had been struggling with a “very painful health issue” for a year and that her doctor had “implored me for months to stop working”.

She reportedly added: “I have been ignoring my doctor’s advice and my health for too long, so I have made the very hard decision to retire and step down as president of Now.”

Her resignation reportedly comes after an internal investigation into allegations of racism and a toxic work environment and as 26 chapter leaders called for Van Pelt to go.

Shortly after Van Pelt’s resignation email was sent, the Beast reported, Now leaders were sent another email stating that the investigation had found “governance issues and evidence of a toxic work environment” but that allegations of racial discrimination and retaliation had not been upheld.

It reportedly read: “Now is committed to addressing these issues and to working together to move forward and fight for the equality of all women.”

The Florida Now president, Kim Porteous, who was reportedly among leaders who called for Van Pelt’s resignation, told the Daily Beast putting Van Pelt’s resignation down to health issues was “offensive”.

“We cannot move forward with restorative justice by covering up racism or making excuses for people to leave,” she said.

A June investigation by the website found that Van Pelt had been accused of racist behaviour by more than 15 former staff members and interns and that former vice-president Gilda Yazzie had filed a racial discrimination lawsuit against Now.

A letter calling on Van Pelt to resign was reportedly signed by 26 of 35 state chapters and the boards of Washington DC and Twin Cities stepped down in protest. Nine of 15 national board members had also called for her to leave.


Ninth Circuit Strikes Down CA Magazine Ban

The increasingly less liberal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a 2-1 decision Friday, ruling that California’s ban on magazines holding more than 10 rounds was unconstitutional.

Writing for the majority, Judge Kenneth Lee said, “California’s near-categorical ban of [large-capacity magazines] strikes at the core of the Second Amendment — the right to armed self-defense. Armed self-defense is a fundamental right rooted in tradition and the text of the Second Amendment. Indeed, from pre-colonial times to today’s post-modern era, the right to defend hearth and home has remained paramount. California’s law imposes a substantial burden on this right to self-defense.” Therefore, he concluded, “It cannot stand.” If standard-capacity magazines are illegal, what does the Second Amendment really protect? This is a small but important win for Americans’ Second Amendment rights in the nation’s most leftist state.

For one thing, the Ninth Circuit’s decision is a clear rebuke of Senator Kamala Harris’s stance against the Second Amendment. Of California’s former attorney general, National Shooting Sports Foundation spokesman Mark Oliva pointedly observed, “During her short-lived presidential campaign, she demanded gun-control legislation within 100 days and threatened executive actions if Congress didn’t deliver. Senator Harris was clear when she said gun control would be an administration priority. Her platform included entertaining forced confiscation of lawfully owned semiautomatic rifles, redefining ‘sporting purpose’ for lawful firearm possession, criminalizing private firearm transfers and repealing the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act. In fact, she supports politicizing the Department of Justice and using the weight of the federal government to harass a constitutionally protected industry in a series of frivolous lawsuits to bankrupt manufactures.”

Last October, Harris spoke to the leftist anti-gun lobby March for Our Lives and expressed her support for the forced confiscation of firearms. “We have to have a buyback program and I support a mandatory gun buyback program,” Harris said. “It’s got to be smart. We’ve got to do it the right way but there are five million [assault weapons] at least, some estimate as many as 10 million, and we’re going to have to have smart public policy that’s about taking those off the streets but doing it the right way.”

Once again, the facts on homicides using firearms and specifically the erroneous term “assault weapons” simply do not comport with the anti-gun lobby’s fallacious narrative. As Kevin Williamson astutely notes, “So-called assault rifles are instruments of homicide only rarely — so rarely, in fact, that government records rarely break them out as their own category. In 2018, all rifles — from scary-looking black ‘assault rifles’ to granddad’s deer rifle — accounted for fewer than 300 murders, according to the FBI. More Americans are beaten to death with fists or baseball bats than are shot to death with ‘assault rifles,’ and five times as many are stabbed to death.” That’s true even though rifles like the much-maligned AR-15 use standard-capacity magazines holding 30 rounds, far above California’s ridiculous limit of 10.

Joe Biden’s choice of Harris as his running mate only serves to further cement him as the anti-Second Amendment candidate. As the NRA’s Jason Ouimet observed, “You’re dealing with a guy who’s got a complete and total anti-gun platform. And for that little bit of moderate that he wanted to purport, I think that went out the window.” Indeed, picking Harris — not to mention the Ninth Circuit ruling — serves to show just how far left Biden’s platform is.


Kentucky Photographer Wins Right to Refuse Service to Same-Sex Couples

A federal judge in Kentucky has blocked the city of Louisville from enforcing an anti-discrimination law against a Christian wedding photographer, allowing her to refuse to work same-sex weddings on grounds that her work is an expression of free speech and compelling it would be unconstitutional.

“A government can no more compel that speech than it can compel a freelance speechwriter to write for a political candidate she opposes,” U.S. District Judge Justin Walker wrote in a decision on August 14, explaining his rationale for issuing a preliminary injunction (pdf) in favor of photographer and blogger Chelsey Nelson.

Walker essentially sided with Nelson’s portrayal of her work as a form of “storytelling” and expression of free speech, ruling that it would violate her constitutional right for Louisville authorities to force her to express celebratory messages about same-sex weddings through photographs and blog posts.

“Under our Constitution, the government can’t force them to march for, or salute in favor of, or create an artistic expression that celebrates, a marriage that their conscience doesn’t condone. America is wide enough for those who applaud same-sex marriage and those who refuse to,” Walker wrote in the ruling.

Nelson filed a lawsuit against the city of Louisville in 2019 (pdf), in which her attorneys explained that “because Chelsey believes that God created marriage to be an exclusive covenant between one man and one woman, Chelsey cannot tell stories promoting or celebrating any wedding or marriage not between one man and one woman, such as same-sex marriage, polygamous marriage, or open marriage.”

Her lawyers argued that “Louisville’s law threatens Chelsey’s storytelling and livelihood,” referring to the city’s rule known as the “Fairness Ordinance.” Passed in 1999, it prevents discrimination based on sexual orientation for housing, employment, and public accommodations.

Walker’s decision prevents the city from enforcing this rule against Nelson while her lawsuit makes its way through the courts. His preliminary injunction indicates he thinks the courts will ultimately determine that the Louisville law violates Nelson’s free speech rights.

“Because the Accommodations Provision compels Nelson to express herself in a manner contrary to her conscience, the Court presumes that the provision—as applied to Nelson—is unconstitutional,” Walker wrote. “To be sure, without discovery or even an answer from Louisville, it’s premature to say Nelson will definitely prevail. But it’s highly likely.”

While Walker sided with Nelson’s argument that her work is a form of expression of free speech and so merits protection from Louisville’s law, he rejected the idea that the ruling flung open the door to discrimination.

“To be clear, most applications of antidiscrimination laws—including Louisville’s Fairness Ordinance—are constitutional. Today’s ruling is not a license to discriminate. Nor does it allow for the ‘serious stigma’ that results from a sign in the window announcing that an owner won’t serve gay and lesbian customers,” Walker wrote.

“In Louisville, since 1999 and still today, Marriott cannot refuse a room to a same-sex couple. McDonald’s cannot deny a man dinner simply because he is gay. Neither an empty hotel room, nor a Big Mac, is speech. And it is unnecessary today to decide any questions unrelated to speech.”

Jonathan Scruggs, a lawyer from the Alliance Defending Freedom who argued in favor of Nelson during court proceedings, hailed the court’s decision.

“Just like every American, photographers, and writers like Chelsey should be free to peacefully live and work according to their faith without fear of unjust punishment by the government,” Scruggs said, Kentucky Today reported. “The court was right to halt enforcement of Louisville’s law against Chelsey while her case moves forward. She serves everyone. She simply cannot endorse or participate in ceremonies she objects to, and the city has no right to eliminate the editorial control she has over her own photographs and blogs.”

The Department of Justice earlier weighed in, issuing a statement of interest in February.

“The central question presented in this case is whether the government can compel a wedding photographer to photograph, provide photography editing services for, and blog about weddings of which she does not approve, and does not wish to photograph or to promote,” wrote Assistant Attorney General Eric Dreiband. “The answer is no.”



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

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

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

18 August, 2020

The Racism of the ‘Anti-Racist’ Movement

Black Lives Matter protests led many people to want to do something useful to reduce racial injustice. Racial justice groups are being flooded with money. Big companies made multimillion-dollar donations.

“Bad idea,” says black radio host Larry Elder in my new video.  “It is condescending… and not helpful. I urge white people to chill. Stop helping us, because you’re making things worse!”

Making things worse, he says, because it supports the activists’ claim that “blacks are victims of racism. (But) if racism were in America’s DNA, Obama never could have got elected. Racism has never been more insignificant a factor in one’s success than right now.”

I push back. “It must be a huge problem or there wouldn’t be all this protest!”

“Well, they’re being lied to,” Elder responds. Teachers, black activists, and the media give “young people the impression that racism remains this huge problem in America when it is not.”

It’s not, he says, because today any person who does three things can succeed: “Finish high school, don’t have a kid until you get married, get a job. Do those things, you will not be poor.”

The biggest problem facing the black community today, says Elder, is the absence of fathers. In the 1960s, most black children were raised in two-parent households. That changed when our government’s war on poverty began.

The handouts sent the message that it’s the government’s job, not your responsibility, to take care of you and your kids. “A mother with two children makes more money than she would make on minimum wage because of all the goodies she gets through the welfare state!”

Now, he says, Black Lives Matter actually encourages the breakup of families. Their website does say, “disrupt the Western-prescribed, nuclear family.”

That’s a Karl Marx idea straight from “The Communist Manifesto.” Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors proudly describes herself as a “trained Marxist.”

Elder calls her and the anti-capitalist protesters “phonies.”

“Do they really want socialism?” Elder asks. “Do they really want inferior products? They are all wearing Nike and using Apple products. They’re hypocrites.”

But they’re winning!

They are even redefining what racism means. Today’s “anti-racists” say racism means “any policy with an effect that is disproportionate.” So even a tax deduction is racist because on average, whites deduct more than blacks.

“Anti-racism presumes things about the world that simply can’t be true,” says Kmele Foster, lead producer at Freethink. “We are all at bottom, whatever our race, individuals. Anti-racism takes that and flips it on its head.”

Recently, Washington’s Museum of African American History and Culture, part of the taxpayer-funded Smithsonian Institute, posted that “white culture” means things like “nuclear family,” “self-reliance,” “rigid time schedule,” and “delayed gratification.”

The poster is “despicable,” says Foster. “It’s offensive to suggest that black people can’t aspire to or possess all the values outlined in a document like this. Black people can be punctual. Black people are, in fact, successful in this country.”

The poster was removed, after complaints.

I wanted to ask Black Lives Matter about things like that. We contacted all 14 U.S. chapters. Not one would agree to an interview.

Too bad. I wanted to ask the “anti-racists” if they notice that they and white supremacists now support similar segregationist policies, like blacks- (or whites-) only spaces. Foster points out that both white supremacists and anti-racists believe “race is an immutable attribute of who we are.”

He prefers Martin Luther King Jr.’s vision: a nation where “people are judged not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”

“Black Lives Matter leaders don’t really want the vision of MLK,” says Elder. “They want a color-coordinated society—as long as they’re the ones who do the coordinating.”


Woke anti-Semitism: Why do so many prominent ‘anti-racist’ activists rub shoulders with Jew-haters?

The September 2020 edition of British Vogue is, as one would expect of a fashion magazine, visually pleasing. The cover displays a striking monochrome shot of footballer Marcus Rashford and model Adwoa Aboah in all their finery, astride a red typeface which reads: ‘ACTIVISM NOW – THE FACES OF HOPE.’ In the issue’s feature piece, Brit(ish) author Afua Hirsch honours a selection of anti-racist activists she deems ‘remarkable’.

But what’s striking about some of them is their proximity to anti-Semites. In the piece, Hirsch heaps praise upon former Women’s March organiser Tamika D Mallory, who famously refused to condemn Louis Farrakhan. Farrakhan is the longtime leader of black-supremacist sect Nation of Islam. He has publicly referred to Jews as ‘bloodsuckers’ and ‘termites’. For decades his sect has distributed propaganda claiming that Jews control the economy and were responsible for the Atlantic slave trade.

Hirsch describes 2020 ‘as a year that shredded complacency’. Yet her own spotlighting of morally dubious ‘anti-racist’ activists demonstrates the woke congregation’s appalling complacency regarding anti-Semitism. Why is it that someone like Hirsch, who tirelessly campaigned for the removal of Nelson’s Column in Trafalgar Square for its connotations of historical racism, is happy to laud living, breathing activists with ongoing links to Jew-haters?

Anti-Semitism is a real problem on the woke left. The so-called Forever Family Force, which marched in Brixton recently as part of a reparations demonstration, made headlines for its paramilitary-style gear. Since then it has been revealed that FFF leader Khari McKenzie has made a series of anti-Semitic posts. Like Farrakhan, he blames Jews for slavery and has described the Jewish community’s alleged role in the slave trade as ‘the original holocaust’. Unsurprisingly, McKenzie was also quick to jump to grime artist Wiley’s defence after his anti-Jewish Twitter tirade last month.

This troubling undercurrent in progressive activism is an inevitable product of an intersectional ideology that labels certain groups as innately ‘privileged’, and thus evil, and others as eternally ‘oppressed’, and therefore virtuous. Jews (and indeed, truth itself) are mere collateral when it comes to the woke mission to deconstruct an allegedly evil society. And regrettably, this woke anti-Semitism is very much in vogue.


'Kamikaze Academics' and a lesson for today from the Bible

The teachings of Jesus are filled with paradoxes, but none is more paradoxical than this: “whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it” (Matthew 16:25). As expressed in another passage, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life” (John 12:24-25). This is a cardinal, revolutionary principle, and by understanding it and implementing it, we can overcome the cancel culture.

But what, exactly, does this principle mean in our practical, day to day lives? An Australian professor, Dr. Peter Ridd, fired by his university for telling the politically incorrect truth, has coined a term that says it all. He calls it “Kamikaze Academics.”

As explained by James Delingpole, “Kamikaze Academics will comprise professors like himself willing to get themselves fired for expressing opinions which go against the standard leftist narrative — and in doing so, expose how little free speech and diversity of thought there now is in academe.”

This is the practical application of the teachings of Jesus, fleshed out here in the academic world. You speak the truth and live the truth, regardless of cost or consequences. In the process, you save your integrity even if you lose your job. As a result, you become free (in the words of Jesus, “you find your life”).

In contrast, if you try to save your job and preserve your reputation, refusing to question false narratives and choosing to compromise your convictions for the sake of your career, you actually “lose your life.” You become a slave to the system, a slave to peer pressure, a slave to the dollar, a slave to the approval of people, a slave to expediency rather than principle.

Dr. Ridd himself suggested that, “It’s only older academics like me who can do this. We have a duty to do this so that younger academics can have a proper academic career where they can say tough things or even stupid things and still be forgiven. You need to be able to make mistakes.”

But the call must be much broader. Both older and younger academics must speak the truth. The oppressive system must be challenged. To be silent is to enable.

More broadly still, beyond the world of academia, we must all determine to stand up and speak out and be witnesses to the truth, regardless of cost or consequence.

That doesn’t mean that we abandon practical wisdom. There is a time to speak and a time to refrain from speaking.

And that doesn’t mean that we cultivate pride and arrogance as if we couldn’t care less about what others think. To the contrary, we are called to humility, to be peacemakers rather than troublemakers.

But we must have the mentality of spiritual revolutionaries, understanding that we are here for something greater than earthly pleasures, here for a purpose that transcends the goals of ordinary life. We are here to be witnesses, to make an eternal difference, to live lives that count, both in this age and the age to come.

As a result, we are willing to sacrifice something temporal to gain something eternal. In the words of missionary martyr Jim Elliot, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.”

Strikingly, while in college, Elliot journaled this prayer: “Father, take my life, yes, my blood if Thou wilt, and consume it with Thine enveloping fire. I would not save it, for it is not mine to save. Have it Lord, have it all. Pour out my life as an oblation for the world. Blood is only of value as it flows before Thine altar.”

And this: “God, I pray Thee, light these idle sticks of my life and may I burn for Thee. Consume my life, my God, for it is Thine. I seek not a long life, but a full one, like you, Lord Jesus.”

Elliot, martyred by the Auca Indians at the age of 28 in 1956 saw his prayers answered dramatically. And while he did not live a long life, he certainly lived a full life, one that continues to speak and make an impact long after his passing, one like that of Jesus Himself.

Of course, the vast majority of us will not face the test of literal martyrdom. But there are many “deaths” we will be called to die in our daily obedience to God. That’s why I devoted an entire chapter to the theme, “To save your life is to lose it” in my forthcoming book Revolution: An Urgent Call to a Holy Uprising.

It is a fundamental, revolutionary principle set forth by Jesus, and it is something we must live out in the home, in the workplace, on the campus, and online. And yet, in contrast to the original practitioners of “kamikaze,” the Japanese pilots who gave their lives to kill others, we give our lives to liberate and help others. We are here to save people’s lives, not destroy them.

The moment we take hold of this reality, that by losing our lives we find our lives, the cancel culture, along with the larger culture of peer pressure, loses its power. The moment we take hold of this, we are free.

Dr. Ridd is living this out in the world of academics, where he is in a pitched court battle with the university that dismissed him.

Let us each live this out in our own worlds, regardless of cost or consequence. By losing our lives, we will find them.


Joe Biden on Gun Control: Understanding Biden's 2020 Platform and the Second Amendment

The one-two punch of the Wuhan Coronavirus explosion, and the civil unrest of early 2020, led to an unprecedented growth in firearms ownership in America. All told, there were about two million firearms sold in the month of March 2020 alone. Between March and July, an additional three million were sold, with about half of those happening in the month of June.

Ammunition sales have similarly spiked, with record sales occurring on this website. However, gun owners don’t need a report to know that there has been a massive surge in demand for ammunition. They need only go down to their local gun store and see that all of the most common rounds are in short supply, sold out or being rationed at the point of sale.

But it’s not just guns and ammo. There has also been a significant increase in the number of Americans obtaining their concealed carry weapons permit and packing on a daily basis. Forbes magazine estimates that 20 million Americans are now carrying as part of their everyday life.

The flipside of this is that Joe Biden’s 2020 campaign has been perhaps the most radically anti-Second Amendment campaign on record. Former Vice President Biden is very proud of his role in spiriting the 1994 gun ban into passage. If he’s elected, we will see an expansion of the power of the federal government and attacks on the rights of Americans that will not be restricted to the ownership of firearms. As president, Biden would resume the Obama-era attacks on the suburbs ended by President Trump, give citizenship (and voting rights) to nearly 30 million illegal aliens and use the Federal Reserve to address a “racial wealth gap.”

However, Biden’s desire to erode the Second Amendment deserves special attention. It is a radical agenda that will gut the right to bear arms in this country. Does that sound like bluster and hyperbole? It’s not.

There are two ways to determine how a potential President Joe Biden would govern with regard to the Second Amendment: What he says and what he has done. As Joe Biden has been out of government since 2017, we will start with his history as a legislator and as Vice President of the United States.

Joe Biden has a very long record of being anti-Second Amendment. He voted for the 1986 Firearms Owners Protection Act, which was primarily a series of gimmes to gun grabbers in exchange for getting the ATF to leave law-abiding gun owners alone. If you’ve ever wanted to own an M-16, but can’t afford one because of the high price of the related tax stamp, you can thank Joe Biden for that.

Biden was also instrumental in the passage of the Brady Bill. This law, until the creation of the NICS background check system, provided for a five-day waiting period to purchase a firearm. He brags about his role in passing this bill into law on his campaign website, saying “In 1994, Biden – along with Senator Dianne Feinstein – secured the passage of 10-year bans on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. As president, Joe Biden will defeat the NRA again.”

Far more concerning, however, is that, as a Senator, Joe Biden literally wrote the bill that banned so-called “assault weapons” in the United States for 20 years. This assault weapons ban defined “assault weapons” in an extremely broad sense.

Much more HERE


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

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

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

17 August, 2020

Uber and Lyft Say They Will Likely Suspend Service in California Because of Suffocating Labor Order

Global rideshare giant Uber has said they will most likely have to suspend their service throughout California now that the state has ordered them to hire all of their drivers, rather than allow them to drive as independent contractors.

The order comes after the state has been engulfed in controversy following the enactment of Assembly Bill 5 in January, legislation that completely upended employment laws in California. The bill totally redefined the parameters of independent contract work, which specifically skewered the gig economy and freelance work.

Under AB5, gig workers such as rideshare drivers, delivery drivers, and other on-demand service workers for an industry that has surged in the past few years, contract work is limited severely. The law requires that the company hires the workers rather than allow them to work their own hours at their own pace, a restriction that completely undermines the business model for the gig economy.

Democratic lawmakers helmed by California Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez introduced the bill to ostensibly help workers in the state receive state-mandated employer benefits that they would be eligible for if they were forced onto the staff.

In practice, however, AB5 has cost thousands of Californians work as freelancers and gig workers are no longer legally allowed to earn money unless they are a normal member of staff. Freelance writers, for example, must be taken on as full-time staff if they produce more than 35 pieces of writing per publication per year. In the digital age, that threshold has been crippling for writers who have depended on being able to contribute to multiple outlets simultaneously.

Both Presumed Democratic Presidential nominee Joe Biden and his VP pick Sen. Kamala Harris fully support AB5, despite the fact that even far-left Californians have spoken out against its stranglehold on earning potential in the state.

They also support the PRO Act, a federal measure that would apply the same job-killing laws to the entire nation. The Democratic-led House of Representatives passed the measure earlier this year. It is not expected to come up for a vote in the Republican-held Senate, but will likely resurface in another form should Democrats gain more control in Congress after November.

The business model for Uber works for riders because of the low overhead made possible by the independent contracting relationship with the drivers. The corporation works for drivers who often contract with multiple companies and get to pick their own hours. As full-time employees of just one company with mandatory set schedules and costly benefits, the ride rates would be exorbitant and the employment freedom for the drivers would evaporate.

The fate of rideshare driving and business in the state has been held up in litigation for months as Uber, Lyft, and Postmates have taken California to court over the devastating impact of AB5 on their business. Now, out of options, Uber has said they will probably not be able to continue service in the nation's most populous state.

A San Francisco court ordered this week that Uber and Lyft would not be exempt from the restrictions of AB5 and would be required to classify their drivers as employees, not independent contractors, an order they had resisted until now.

A ballot measure for Californians in November, Proposition 22, would exempt app-based on-demand ride and delivery services from the draconian demands of AB5. That measure was largely funded by the companies to the tune of $30 million.

Lyft President John Zimmer encouraged voters to take the matter seriously when they head to the polls this fall.

"If our efforts here are not successful it would force us to suspend operations in California," Zimmer said. Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi echoed Zimmer's sentiment.

"If the court doesn’t reconsider, then in California, it’s hard to believe we’ll be able to switch our model to full-time employment quickly," Khosrowshahi told MSNBC. Both companies intend to appeal the court ruling, which has given them 10 days to do so. Should they fail, Uber and Lyft both stated they will be required to suspend service pending the results of the election and success of Prop. 22.


Poland and the tyranny of human-rights law

Ignore the outrage – Poland has good reasons to leave the Istanbul Convention on Violence against Women.

Poland, the bad boy of Europe, recently got another big black mark. The trouble this time had to do with an institution you might be forgiven for not having heard of, the Council of Europe’s Istanbul Convention on Violence against Women. Under pressure, Poland ratified this convention in 2015. Now, however, following Andrzej Duda’s election victory a few weeks ago – with Duda having run on an unashamedly traditionalist and Catholic ticket – Poland has announced that it intends to give the required six months’ notice to pull out of it.

The outrage has been predictable. Women in Poland have been demonstrating clad in Handmaid’s Tale costumes. The Council of Europe and a number of MEPs have slated the decision as ‘alarming’ and ‘disgraceful’. Guy Verhofstadt, not to be outdone, has called the affair ‘scandalous’. He went on to tell us, didactically as ever, that ‘violence is not a traditional value. The EU and all of its members signed because Europe stands for human rights, equality and decency.’

This whole debacle is worth a closer look. One reason is that it is both novel and very significant for the future of Europe.The other is that Poland is right.

To see why, you have to look carefully at the convention text. True, its headline purpose is to require that any state party to it outlaw violence against women (including such matters as forced abortion and FGM), prosecute it effectively and provide remedies for the victims of it. But this hardly necessitates a treaty at all. All European states already do this anyway, Poland included. Whatever the Euro-establishment might try to insinuate, no one is looking to turn Poland into some kind of male supremacist, wife-beating theocratic dystopia.

What is making the Poles unhappy (and ought to give pause to any liberal administration) is the small print elsewhere in the convention. Take Article 12, for instance. Since 2015, this has required the Polish state to:

‘Take the necessary measures to promote changes in the social and cultural patterns of behaviour of women and men with a view to eradicating prejudices, customs, traditions and all other practices which are based on the idea of the inferiority of women or on stereotyped roles for women and men.’

Read that carefully again. What it amounts to is a demand for the state suppression of wrongthink: an insistence that whatever the electorate might think, the state must take administrative measures to eradicate its existing customs, traditions and practices in so far as they do not conform to an official left-liberal ideology.

And there is more. By Article 14, the Polish government stands committed to major intervention in education and the media. So at all levels from kindergarten to university, it must impose, whatever parents might want, ‘teaching material on issues such as equality between women and men, non-stereotyped gender roles, mutual respect, non-violent conflict resolution in interpersonal relationships [and] gender-based violence against women’. Nor does such compulsory ideological direction end with education: all these matters must also be promoted by the government in, among other places, the media. It is deliciously ironic that the same Euro-elite that increasingly castigates Poland for its restricted press freedom also demands that the country continue to be signed up to a treaty that not only allows but requires intervention in the media.

But by all accounts, the final straw was the Istanbul line on gender. The treaty requires far more than teaching children that gender roles are bad. More importantly, Article 3 states baldly, without room for argument, that gender means ‘the socially constructed roles, behaviours, activities and attributes that a given society considers appropriate for women and men’. In other words, whatever opinions Poles might have on the gender debate, their government is committed in international law to dictating to them what the correct line is to take.

In view of all this, it is not all that surprising that Poland has made up its mind that it has had enough and wishes to cut and run. Whatever you may think of the values contained in this authoritarian instrument, surely the decision to adopt them must rest with the people of Poland, whose will must prevail over that of a cadre of international quangocrats who are largely insulated from public opinion.

But these developments in Poland may also have a bigger destabilising potential. Disquiet over the Istanbul convention are more widespread than might appear. Turkey, for example, is also mulling withdrawal for much the same reasons as Poland, and the Polish move must strengthen the hand of those promoting a Turkish exit.

Since the convention was signed in Istanbul and Turkey was an early ratifier (in 2012), the political fallout from such an event would be big. There could also be effects closer to home. The UK government is under severe pressure to ratify (indeed, an act of parliament quietly slipped through in 2017 requires annual reports on progress towards ratification). But those behind the pressure may well find their job a good deal harder once it becomes public knowledge that there is so much to dislike about the treaty they are pushing.

More generally, Poland’s announcement also threatens a major upset to the comfortable liberal balance in Europe on the subject of human rights. The Istanbul Convention, which looks like motherhood-and-apple-pie on the surface but underneath is actually rather sinister, is in no way unique. On the contrary: it is part of a suite of fairly similar agreements which have been ratified by all, or virtually all, European countries.

Similar in conception are the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC); the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW); and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESR). Each of these also contains prescriptive clauses on matters of social policy which could well impinge on democratic decision-making (think corporal punishment against children, which the UNCRC might be read as banning, or the rewriting of school textbooks, which on one reading the CEDAW actually demands).

So far there has been an unspoken assumption that human-rights treaties of this type operate on a ratchet principle: countries can be heavily leant on to ratify convention after convention, and once they have ratified, it is not the done thing ever to withdraw, even if a treaty technically allows it. But Poland has now dared to do the unthinkable, and as Turkey shows, where it has gone others may well follow.

There is also one other thing to put in the balance. As far as European countries are concerned, the apex of the entire human-rights consensus is formed by the European Convention on Human Rights itself. But this, too, has serious shortcomings which people are increasingly willing to publicise. And this too, it is all too easy to forget, has a provision for withdrawal (all a country has to do is give six months’ notice). No wonder, perhaps, that the international liberal human-rights establishment is suddenly beginning to look uncomfortably over its shoulder, in case the whole edifice it has painstakingly built up since 1950 starts to come crashing down about its ears.


Why Blockading Would Have Been Better than Bombing Japan

On the 75th anniversary of the dropping of the atomic bombs—“Little Boy” and “Fat Man”—on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan, a debate still rages about whether the United States should have used the weapons. That’s because the 129,000 to 226,000 dead were overwhelmingly civilians.

International law clearly denotes the disproportionate killing of civilians as a war crime. Yet, the winners of war write history, so American school history books usually either blandly report the bombings or put them in the broader context of battling the evil Japanese Empire, along with its Nazi German and Italian fascist allies, in the most gargantuan clash of good and evil in human history—the great World War II.

And while it is true that by their aggression and their own war crimes, the Japanese, Germans, and Italians killed millions more noncombatants than the United States and its Western allies, some troubling questions linger about the allied use of the intentional bombing of cities. From even a morally superior position in a democracy on the winning side, we can (and should) critique our own government’s actions without being attacked as “unpatriotic.”

After all, defending debate and dissent in a free society, against the forces of genuine evil, is what we were fighting for in this war. And we should have had higher standards than those evil enemies, right?

Although the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were historically significant because they ushered in the nuclear age, which eventually brought forth the much more powerful thermonuclear H-bombs and a balance of nuclear terror, these first atomic weapons made the targeting of enemy cities more efficient. Instead of incinerating civilians with bombing runs of hundreds of planes—as was done in the firebombing of Dresden, Hamburg, Tokyo, and other Axis cities—the same mass destruction could be had with only two aircraft, one each over Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

In both Germany and Japan, such mass killing of civilians were done in 1945 as both enemies were on their last legs. War crimes are more often committed when combatants are exhausted and frustrated with the length or intensity of a conflict or the tenacity of enemy resistance.

In the Pacific theater of World War II, the Japanese resistance was fierce, the dropping of the atomic bombs was justified on the basis that an invasion of Japan’s home islands would have cost an estimated one million allied casualties.

When I was in junior high school in the early 1970s, I came home from school and told my father we had debated whether the bombs should have been dropped. He quickly confounded me with the argument that I might not have been in the world if the bombs hadn’t been dropped, because he was slated to be part of the U.S. forces that would have invaded Japan if the Japanese hadn’t surrendered.

As I grew older, I realized that there were several problems with this argument. First, did the atomic bombings of August 6 and 9 in 1945 trigger the Japanese surrender on August 15? Some analysts believe that the triggering event was actually the Soviet Union’s entrance into the war on August 9. Second, although Japanese resistance had been fierce, were the huge casualty estimates for an invasion plausible? In fact, the estimates were extremely soft. More troubling was the willingness to kill civilians to reduce combatant casualties based on those hazy estimates.

Third, the allies at the Potsdam Conference on July 26th, before the bombs were dropped, demanded “unconditional surrender” from Japan or that nation would face “prompt and utter destruction.” To Japan, this meant giving up their sacred emperor, which they would not do; they ignored the ultimatum. In most wars, a settlement with conditions are negotiated between the winners and losers. Unconditional surrender usually makes the enemy–fearing subjugation and humiliation–fight harder. In this case, the United States did not make unconditional surrender stick, because the Japanese eventually got to keep their emperor, even after the atomic bombings. Finally, and most important, dropping the A-bombs were not the only alternative to an all-out invasion of Japan.

Japan is an island, and by August 1945, the U.S. Navy had overwhelmingly crushed its Japanese counterpart. The U.S. Navy could have imposed a tight blockade around Japan’s home islands, allowed a minimum of food, medicine, etc. in for humanitarian purposes, and simply waited for Japan to capitulate. This option would have saved hundreds of thousands of civilian lives and allowed the United States to have avoided stooping to the low regard for civilian life that its enemies exhibited on so many occasions.

However, a naval blockade of Japan would not have fulfilled perhaps the real purpose of the atomic bombs: demonstrating the power of the new weapon to a then ally and likely future enemy—the Soviet Union. President Harry Truman delayed testing of the atomic bomb until the Potsdam Conference with Winston Churchill and Soviet leader Joseph Stalin, and comments were made at the conference that Truman wore the bomb ostentatiously on his hip to intimidate Stalin. However, it was morally questionable to drop powerful bombs on Japanese civilians, killing hundreds of thousands, merely to impress a possible future enemy with U.S. technology and power.

Ironically, Stalin already knew the power of the bomb because his spies had thoroughly penetrated the Manhattan Project. In short, a slightly porous U.S. naval blockade of Japan would have been far superior to the atomic mass killing of civilians, which has remained a stain on the otherwise defensible allied defeat of the Axis powers; the only use of atomic weapons heretofore in history is still used in propaganda by U.S. nuclear adversaries and wannabes, such as China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, and Iran.


National Democrats Endorsed Congressional Candidate Who Referred to Women as 'Breeders'

A most unpleasant person

A Democratic congressional candidate in a nationally-watched race is facing scrutiny for a host of now-deleted blog posts in which he voiced creepy sexual fantasies about children and degrading comments toward women. A current state legislator in Michigan, Jon Hoadley earned the Democratic party’s nomination in Michigan’s 6th congressional district, and will take on GOP Rep. Fred Upton in November.

Hoadley’s now-deleted blog, “Rambling Politics,” featured posts where he bragged about “learning about crystal meth,” described various sexual partners as “victims,” and made reference to four-year-old children wearing thongs. Hoadley, an openly-gay man, went on to deem women as “breeders,” referring to reproductive ability.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) threw their support behind Hoadley leading up to the primary election. A handful of other national Democrats also endorsed Hoadley’s bid, including Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), Sens. Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Gary Peters (D-MI), and Reps. Pramila Jayapa (D-WA) and Haley Stevens (D-MI).

Since the deleted blog posts surfaced, national Democrats including the DCCC have yet to comment on Hoadley’s gross behavior. In a statement to New York Post, Hoadley’s campaign likened the posts to “bad college poetry.” Hoadley’s primary opponent did not offer her endorsement after he clinched the nomination, citing his misogyny, use of meth and sexual exploitation of children.

If Hoadley was a Republican seeking a seat in Congress, the GOP would be rightfully forced to denounce this creepy behavior.



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

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

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

16 August, 2020

An Active-Duty Police Officer Analyzes the Latest George Floyd Video

Some excerpts only from his comments below. The officer suggests, as I have done from the beginning, that Floyd died of a heart attack

The video then shows Floyd being escorted to a police vehicle. He is baring and gnashing his teeth with dried spittle at the corners of his mouth. These are both clear signs of meth intoxication. As he is walked to the car in a normal escort position (officers holding his arms), he is constantly complaining, doubling over, screaming and saying, “ouchie.” This is abnormal. As they get to the patrol car, an officer says, “Stop falling down.” Floyd most likely tried to drop to his knees. This is common behavior with meth users and with blacks who will try anything to avoid being put in the back of a police car.

It’s at this point that we first hear Floyd say, “I’m claustrophobic.” The officers search him before putting him in the car. Floyd then begins resisting the officers in earnest. He does not stop talking or moaning for even a moment during this part of the video. He goes from moaning and crying to calm statements such as “I’m not that kinda guy.” These are more signs of meth intoxication. Floyd then stiffens to avoid being put into the car. This is “active resistance.” Floyd has been legally arrested for a felony crime, and it would have been legal and reasonable to use additional force (baton strikes or other pain compliance) to get him into the vehicle. Floyd again says he is claustrophobic and the officers offer to roll the windows down for him. Floyd then says, “Imma die in here,” as he continues to resist being put into the car. He says, “I don’t want y’all to win. I got anxiety,” and “I’m not tryin’ to win. I’ll go on the ground, I’ll do anything.” This babbling suggests that Floyd is suffering from “methamphetamine psychosis,” a condition that causes delusions and hallucinations.

One of the other officers then goes over to the passenger-side rear door to pull Floyd through and into the back seat. At this point, Floyd’s voice becomes more and more raspy and rapid. It is clear that his intoxication and panic are getting worse. His pulse rate and blood pressure are probably rising dangerously. Floyd can then be heard saying over and over, “I wanna go on the ground. I wanna go on the ground.” A person standing outside the car can be heard saying something to the effect of, “You’re gonna have a heart attack, man. Just get in the car.”

At about this time, a third officer arrives. The three officers patiently try to get Floyd into the car. Just because you are claustrophobic does not mean you don’t have to get into a police car. If you’re arrested, you’re going into the police car one way or another. In any case, a really claustrophobic person is not likely to be sitting calmly in a car when the police arrive.

As the officers struggle with Floyd, he is already complaining, “I can’t breathe.” No one is “kneeling on his neck” or compressing his upper body in any way. He is clearly becoming panicked. A bystander tells Floyd, “You can’t win,” and Floyd replies, “I ain’t tryin’ to win.” Floyd continues screaming, “I can’t breathe,” even though both doors to the car are open and none of the officers is doing anything to obstruct his breathing. As Floyd continues screaming and resisting, an officer says, “Right now you’re under arrest for forgery.” Floyd stops screaming, and calmly asks, “Forgery for what?”

In the final part of the video, the officers give up trying to get Floyd into the car. They gently put him in a prone position, and discuss the use of a “hobble.” This is a piece of equipment that immobilizes the legs in a bent position and then attaches to handcuffs. The latest versions have handles so you can lift a restrained suspect off the ground, in a seated position, and put him a police car. You use these if someone is putting up so much resistance you can’t even get him into the car, or if he’s in the back seat trying to kick the windows out. Police don’t have to use these very often, so not every officer carries a hobble. It appears that one of the men goes off to get one. You keep a man face down on the ground to prepare him for hobbling.

The next part of the video has already been seen by millions; an officer kneels on Floyd’s upper back/neck area. This is an acceptable suspect-control method taught in police academies across the country. Floyd continues saying, “I can’t breathe.” The fact that he keeps saying it would not have alerted officers that anything they were doing was preventing him from breathing. He does not stop talking or crying, which suggests he is getting enough oxygen. The officers can also be heard saying, “EMS is on the way” meaning that an ambulance has been called to check Floyd out. He then says, “I’m ’bout ta die in this bitch.” He continues to be agitated and resisting, in the same delusional, stimulant-intoxicated way, just as he did from the moment the officers contacted him. He calls for his mother, even though his mother is dead.

A bystander says, “Get up and get in the car, man.” Officers are trying to determine what drugs Floyd might be on. One says, “He had a weed pipe on him.” They discuss the symptoms of PCP intoxication and mention that they had noticed Floyd’s eyes darting back and forth. An officer asks, “Roll him on his side? I’m just worried about excited delirium or whatever.”

By this time, the inevitable crowd of obnoxious blacks has gathered. People are advancing on the officers, and one says, “I ain’t scared of you, bro,” referring to an officer. They begin berating the officers, and this is the point at which George Floyd loses consciousness and dies.

I am not a doctor. I don’t know Floyd’s medical history, but he had taken illegal drugs. Methamphetamine is a stimulant so powerful, it can cause a heart rate of over 160 beats per minute and raise blood pressure to dangerous levels. Floyd also had taken fentanyl, which is a powerful narcotic. Even for a healthy person, this combination of drugs can be lethal.

This is the Hennepin County autopsy report, which lists the cause of death as “cardiopulmonary arrest complicating law enforcement subdual, restrain, and neck compression.” It does not say “strangulation.” It also says Floyd had “arteriosclerotic heart disease,” which was “multifocal, severe,” and that he had “hypertensive heart disease,” and that he was Covid-19 positive. The toxicology reports says he had Fentanyl, Norfentanyl, Methamphetamine, Morphine, and various forms of THC (the intoxicant in marijuana) in his body. You can see the full list below. The most important finding is Fentanyl, which Floyd had at 11ng/mL. Later in the toxicology report, we find this crucial sentence: “Signs associated with fentanyl toxicity include severe respiratory depression, seizures, hypotension, coma and death. In fatalities from fentanyl, blood concentrations are variable and have been reported as low as 3 ng/mL.” Floyd had more than three times the potentially lethal dose of Fentanyl in his body before the police even showed up.

The Floyd family hired the medical examiner Michael Baden — prominent for going after police officers for misconduct — to do his own autopsy. Dr. Baden claims that Floyd died from pressure on his neck and back, which interfered with his blood flow and breathing. It will be up to the jury to decide which report is more convincing. My own view is that George Floyd died from a drug-induced panic or overdose coupled with his violent resistance, which caused a fatal medical reaction.

From start to finish, the officers acted professionally and calmly. They did not use force other than handcuffing Floyd and trying to get him into the car by using soft, empty-hand control. There were no baton strikes. It was reasonable and legal to take Floyd out of the car and put him in the prone position with the intent of hobbling him. It appears that they were waiting for the hobble to come.

It may look bad that Officer Derek Chauvin was kneeling on Floyd’s upper back and neck. But what were the officers supposed to do? Not restrain him? He would have gotten up and tried to escape. Put him in the back of the car? Four officers already tried to do that. Call an ambulance? They did that.

Could the officers have done things differently? Perhaps they should have rolled him on his side or begun CPR. There is always room for improvement. But the idea that four Minneapolis police officers — only two of whom were white — somehow intentionally killed Floyd because of “racism” is as absurd as it is dangerous. I feel sure that the officers would have acted in exactly the same way if Floyd been Hispanic, Asian, or white.

Unless you have put on a uniform and a gun belt and tried to arrest a violent, powerful black man, don’t tell the world what the officers should have done. If you think you know how to arrest a large, uncooperative black man on illegal stimulants, well, just try it. Many cities are talking about sending unarmed civilian teams instead of police officers to handle people like Floyd. I say, good luck to them.


A reader comments:  From the very outset I believed the officers had acted in a way they believe was authorised by their training .  Not because the police do no wrong but because they knew they were being filmed and their own body cams were on and also could be used as evidence against them if they did wrong.

BLM protesters demand white people ‘give up their homes’

A group of Black Lives Matter protesters in Seattle marched through a residential neighbourhood this week demanding that white residents give up their homes, dramatic video shows.

Footage of the Wednesday demonstration posted to Twitter shows a crowd of dozens chanting “Black lives matter” before an unidentified man projects his ire toward nearby white residents — saying they are living in a historically black section of the city as another woman in the crowd yells that they should “give up” their homes, the clip shows.

“Do you know that before your white ass came here, this was all black people?” the man says. “Do you know people like you came in here and basically bought all the land from the black people for less than what it was worth, kicked them out so you could live here? Do you know that?”

The man continues: “’Cause if you don’t, now you f – king do — now do something about it!”

Another woman in the crowd then urges the residents to “open their wallet” as the man continues to yell at the unidentified residents off-camera.

“So how do you plan to fix it?” the man continues. “As a gentrifier, because you are part of that problem.”

A woman with a megaphone then urges the residents to “give up” their house, the footage shows.

“Give black people back their homes!” she yells. “You’re sitting there comfortably — comfortable as f — k as if they didn’t help gentrify this neighbourhood! I used to live in this neighbourhood, and my family was pushed out, and you’re sitting up there having a good time with your other white friends!”

A second clip purportedly shows BLM demonstrators and Antifa members calling for white people to “get the f – k out” as others in the crowd call for reparations.

“Give us our s – t back!” one man yells.

Yet another clip apparently shot in the aftermath of the protest also shows demonstrators threatening a business owner who allegedly called cops to report that a window had been shattered at his business.

“You’re being racist, you’re being racist,” a protester tells the unidentified white business owner. “Check your privilege, check your privilege.”

The protester then tells the man to “go back to his gentrification business” while yelling profanities at him, the clip shows.

“This was never your neighbourhood,” the man’s rant continues. “This was never your neighbourhood.”

The mask-clad white man then refuses to identify his business before being threatened as he walks away, the clip shows.

“Yeah, we’ll make sure to support you,” the protester continues. “Hey look, we don’t know what happened, we ain’t seen sh-t, we don’t know sh-t. You better hope we don’t find out though. That’s not a threat.”

“That’s a promise,” a second man then yells.

One of the protesters was then taken into custody for alleged vandalism as other Black Lives Matter demonstrators yell obscenities at cops, footage shows.

Seattle’s police chief, Carmen Best, stepped down this week as the city council approved cutting the department by as many as 100 cops through lay-offs and attrition. The city currently has some 1,400 officers and the reduction fell short of the 50 per cent cut that many Black Lives Matter protesters had sought.

The city’s mayor, Jenny Durkan, is also facing a legal battle to get her kicked out of office for her role in Seattle’s violent protests, which started in June when demonstrators took over its Capitol Hill district and later renamed it the Capitol Hill Occupation Protest.


Federal appeals court upholds male-only military draft

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Thursday against a lower court judge’s decision declaring the male-only military draft system unconstitutional.

In a decision reported by the Associated Press, the three-judge appeals court panel unanimously ruled “only the Supreme Court may revise its precedent” with regard to the constitutionality of a male-only draft. The decision, in effect, overrules a lower court judge’s determination that the male-only draft system is unconstitutional.

The appeals court decision comes after it announced in March that it would consider a case in which a federal judge in Texas already ruled in 2019 in favor of the National Coalition for Men and determined that the male-only draft is unconstitutional.

The panel, which included judges Carl Stewart, Don Willett and Jacques Weiner, acknowledged in their decision that the Supreme Court previously ruled in favor of the male-only draft in 1981 when women were largely absent from combat roles, setting the precedent for the male-only draft. In their decision, the judges said, “the factual underpinning of the controlling Supreme Court decision has changed” but “that does not grant a court of appeals license to disregard or overrule that precedent.”

Currently, men between the ages of 18 and 26 are required to register with the Selective Service System. The mandate was put in place by former President Jimmy Carter’s Presidential Proclamation 4771 on July 2, 1980.

In March, the National Commission on Military, National, and Public Service has recently issued a Congressional report in which it determined women should be required to register for the military draft. The report said women between the ages of 18 and 26 should be included in the same Selective Service System.

“The Commission determined that the time is right to extend the registration requirement to all Americans, men and women,” the March report said. “The current disparate treatment of women unacceptably excludes women from a fundamental civic obligation and reinforces gender stereotypes about the role of women, undermining national security.”

Combat roles in the U.S. military have been increasingly opened to women in recent years. In 2018, then-Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said the U.S. Department of Defense needed more data to study the effectiveness of women in combat roles and said the “the jury is out” on the subject.

In July, the first female “Green Beret” graduated from the U.S. Army Special Forces qualification course


Gallup: 80 Percent of Black Americans Want the Same or More Police in Their Neighborhoods

Defund the police? Not for the vast majority of black Americans, who say the number of cops patrolling their neighborhood should remain the same or even be increased.

This is not the impression we’re getting from the media, who are cheering on Black Lives Matter in their efforts to castrate American police forces. Apparently, they’re doing it in the name of the radical-left faction of black Americans, not the overwhelming majority of black citizens.

Who’d have guessed it?

Washington Free Beacon:

Over 80 percent of black Americans want the police to spend as much or more time in their neighborhoods as they currently do, new polling from Gallup conducted last month finds.

Asked if they would prefer police spend more, less, or the same amount of time in their neighborhoods, 61 percent of black respondents told Gallup the same, while a further 20 percent said more. Just 19 percent said less. Black respondents were more likely to want more police presence than white, Asian, and all adults overall.

The overwhelming support for current levels of policing even holds among black respondents who say they see the police often or very often. Two in three of those say they would like to see the police the same amount or more; 84 percent of black respondents who see the police “sometimes” responded that way, along with 92 percent of those who see the police rarely or never.

Even more interesting is the Gallup finding that blacks who see police frequently in their neighborhoods are no more likely to oppose a continued or elevated police presence in their neighborhood.

The slightly elevated frequency with which Black Americans see police in their neighborhood has limited impact on their preferences for changing the local police presence. About a third of Black Americans who say they often see the police in their neighborhood think the police should spend less time there (34%); however, the majority of adults in this group think they should spend the same amount of time (56%) or more time (10%).

Black Americans’ desire for reduced police presence drops to 16% for those who “sometimes” see the police and to 8% for those who rarely or never see the police.

This doesn’t mean that there is any love lost between blacks and the police.  Fewer than 20 percent of black respondents have any confidence that police will treat them with “courtesy and respect.”

Gallup sums up the findings.

Most Black Americans want the police to spend at least as much time in their area as they currently do, indicating that they value the need for the service that police provide. However, that exposure comes with more trepidation for Black than White or Hispanic Americans about what they might experience in a police encounter. And those harboring the least confidence that they will be treated well, or who have had negative encounters in the past, are much more likely to want the police presence curtailed.

Concentrating on how the police interact with the communities they serve is far more important than the number of cops or social workers or “conflict resolution specialists” on the streets. Blacks want the same thing that whites do: safe streets and simple respect from police. Cops want respect too, and a recognition of how tough their jobs truly are.

That’s very hard when people are disrespecting cops. The situation will not improve overnight and both sides shouldn’t expect it will. But progress will come if politicians stop kowtowing to a violent mob and refuse to defund the police.



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

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

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

14 August, 2020

Whitmer Imposes Implicit Bias Training on State Workers

This implicit bias stuff is mythology. No doubt some sort of unconscious bias is possible in some people but the claim that you can detect it and combat it is a mirage.

It all arose from the use of a test -- the IAT -- that claimed to be able to detect unconscious bias.  It has never been validated as being able to do that however and there is much evidence to say that it is not valid

I summarize some research on it here


Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, who has built a pandemic-related reputation as one of the more arrogant and capricious politicians in the nation, has further burnished those dubious credentials. Last Wednesday, after declaring that racism is a public health crisis, the governor signed an executive order requiring all state employees to undergo “implicit bias” training.

The order itself is a paean to the institutionalized victimhood progressives have foisted on minorities for decades. “Racism has existed in America for over 400 years,” it states. “From the genocide of Indigenous peoples upon the arrival of the Europeans, to chattel slavery beginning in the 1600s, to the Jim Crow era. Even today, through inequitable outcomes in the criminal justice system, achievement gaps in education, disproportionate results in health and infant mortality, and job and housing discrimination, racism remains a presence in American society while subjecting Black, Indigenous, and other people of color to hardships and disadvantages in every aspect of life.”

First, racism has existed for thousands of years among people of every country and culture. Fear of “the other” is a hard-wired biological reality, and thus the notion that racism is particularly American, or that white people are the sole perpetrators of it, is nonsense. Moreover, no country has made a greater effort to atone for its racial shortcomings than the United States.

Yet, as Whitmer’s order makes clear, none of it matters. If “Black, Indigenous, and other people of color” are the sole victims of racism, while whites are the sole perpetrators of it, one can reasonably assume the governor subscribes to the odious aspect of progressive ideology declaring that only whites can be racist because they control the levers of power.

That worldview may be somewhat problematic among white state workers whose “power” largely consists of showing up for work like everyone else, and who are now being forced to undergo what amounts to a proscribed level of self-abasement as a condition of employment. As for non-white employees, one suspects there might be more than a few who resent being subjected to a categorical assumption of victimhood as much as some of their white counterparts resent being automatically labeled as privileged.

Unfortunately, demagoguery prevails, and bias training is only part of the equation. Whitmer is also creating a Black Leadership Advisory Council that will identify “state laws, or gaps in state law, that create or perpetuate inequities,” serve as a “resource for community groups on issues, programs, sources of funding, and compliance requirements within state government in order to benefit and advance the interests of the Black community,” and promote “the cultural arts within the Black community through coordinated efforts, advocacy, and collaboration with state government.”

This is not Whitmer’s first effort to force-feed her worldview on state workers. In July, she announced that the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs would require healthcare providers in that state to take the same implicit bias training as part of the licensing process.

“This is not alleging that people are racist,” Whitmer insisted. “It’s recognizing everyone has biases, from where we grew up or how we were raised. It’s just a fact and that’s why we’ve got to acknowledge it and seek to address it.”

Address what, exactly? A curriculum on “Institutionalized Racial Superiority for white people” developed by the Civil Rights Office for the city of Seattle may provide some insight. It asked white participants to explain how they benefit from “white supremacy,” how their “white fragility” “shows up at work,” or if they’re aware of their “white silence.”

In short, a white person is guilty of racism until proven otherwise. And in Whitmer’s world, there is apparently a government standard of acceptable groupthink that is necessary to implement because “where we grew up or how we were raised” is, like America itself, an inherently flawed proposition.

The arrogance is breathtaking. Those who wish to remain on the government payroll must subject themselves to the contemptible notion that any judgment one makes about anything, no matter how well reasoned, is “biased.” Even worse, workers must assume that wholly unconscious behavior evinced by whites and minorities automatically aligns itself with the progressive worldview that all whites are oppressors and all minorities are oppressed.

And that’s “just a fact.”

Thus, if one is white, one is either a progressive or a bigot. And if one is a minority? Democrat presidential candidate Joe Biden succinctly explained that his or her choices are equally limited. “If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump,” Biden said, “then you ain’t black.”

As for defining racism as a public health crisis, Clickondetroit.com reveals the pernicious mindset behind such assertions. “The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed, confirmed, and highlighted the deadly nature of pre-existing inequities caused by systemic racism,” it states. “For example, in cases where race and ethnicity is known, the rate of reported COVID-19 cases for Black/African American Michigan residents is 14,703 per 1,000,000, compared with 4,160 per 1,000,000 for white residents, more than three times higher. And the rate of reported COVID-19 deaths for Black/African American Michigan residents is 1,624 per 1,000,000 compared with 399 per 1,000,000 for White residents, more than four times higher.”

That such data ignore other health problems exacerbating the effects of coronavirus is telling. For example, black Americans have greater levels of high blood pressure and higher rates of diabetes than white Americans. Lifestyle choices count as well, but when U.S. Surgeon General and black American Jerome Adams suggested that blacks “avoid alcohol, tobacco, and drugs,” he was excoriated for undermining the systemic racism narrative that insists the entire society must be reordered to ensure equal outcomes for all — even in terms of equal infection and death rates from disease.

Yet if Whitmer et al. were being honest, they’d acknowledge it is the elderly who have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic. As of May, an astounding 42% of all coronavirus deaths took place in nursing homes and assisted living facilities.

Moreover, Whitmer herself deserves a substantial portion of blame for elderly deaths in her state. Despite evidence that made even a progressive stalwart like New York Governor Andrew Cuomo backtrack on his own order to place infected people into state nursing homes and assisted living facilities, Whitmer actually vetoed a bill on July 31 that would have moved elderly coronavirus patents into separate facilities.

In other words, after the catastrophic data from New York were available.

Nonetheless, in a letter explaining her decision, Whitmer asserted that her veto was based on “the false premise that isolation units created within existing facilities are somehow insufficient to protect seniors.”

That 33% of the coronavirus deaths in her state were nursing home residents or employees? The establishment of an Elderly Leadership Advisory Council — as in the requirement that state workers take “elderly bias” training — will not be forthcoming.

Instead, Michigan workers will be subjected to progressive indoctrination sold as spiritual enlightenment. Yet what about Whitmer herself? A search of relevant stories reveals nothing about whether the governor will participate in the same training. Shouldn’t she lead by example? Or are some state employees — or maybe just one state employee — “more equal” than others?


The Left Cracks Down on Dissent Both Large and Small

For all the talk about our “democracy” being at risk, there’s very little being said by those same people when government officials actively retaliate against those who dissent from their preferred policy positions. That’s because Donald Trump isn’t doing it. No, for perhaps the most obvious example of this abuse of power, we need look no further than Albany.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and his attorney general, Letitia James, have made retaliation against dissent commonplace in the Empire State, and two recent stories prove the point. The first is James’s effort to dissolve the National Rifle Association. James ran on the platform of attacking this largest and most effective defender of the Second Amendment, labeling it a “terrorist organization” during at least one media appearance.

Now, the NRA has long opposed gun control. And it runs advertisements, urges its members to write lawmakers, speaks out on legislation, supports and opposes candidates for office, and donates money to its preferred candidates (at a fraction of the amount given to Democrats by teachers unions, we’d add). All of these activities are protected by the First Amendment, and none of them even remotely resembles terrorism.

Thus, this is just the latest politically punitive move by the tyrannical Cuomo-James regime. Cuomo has waged his jihad against the NRA — and it had an effect on political races in 2018 and 2019. While some of the NRA’s spending decisions clearly have been controversial, the fact remains that the real “crime” has been its stand against laws that would punish millions of law-abiding Americans — particularly sweeping Australia-style gun bans like those pushed by Representatives Eric Swalwell and Beto O'Rourke, among others.

One doesn’t have to be a nationwide group to be a target, however. Just ask Abby Ehmann. The owner of Lucky, a bar in Manhattan, found herself suddenly visited by state liquor authority agents. Shortly after their visit, her bar’s liquor license was suspended. Other bars in the area had not been given that treatment.

Then again, Ms. Ehmann had started a petition to loosen menu restrictions that Cuomo imposed less than a week prior to the fateful inspection. Petitioning for a redress of grievances — which is exactly what Ehmann did — is, again, explicitly protected by the First Amendment. Yet once again, New York retaliated against the dissenter, a small-business owner, for merely exercising that constitutional right.

Sadly, this is part of a larger pattern, not just from New York but from the Left in general, especially since the eight years of the Obama-Biden administration. Numerous instances exist of government abuse targeting dissenters from the progressive agenda, and this disturbing pattern points to an increasingly totalitarian Left weaponizing the powers of the state against average citizens.

Yet as bad as it is now, it could be much worse. Does anyone think that a Biden administration would protect conservative groups from the Lois Lerners of the world? Would Treasury Secretary Elizabeth Warren lay off the NRA, or would she sic the IRS on it? Would Attorney General Kamala Harris not seek to crush dissent, especially given her earlier crackdown on crisis pregnancy centers?

The actions of the Cuomo-James regime in New York are perhaps the most blatant effort to make it illegal for grassroots Patriots to engage in political discourse. Arguably, the only thing more worrisome than the actions of that rotten regime is the silence of the mainstream media — precisely those who purport to be our guardians of democracy and norms.


How gender-neutral language excludes women

Do women suffer from cervical cancer or do ‘individuals with a cervix’? It sounds like an easy question to answer, but not for the American Cancer Society, which has unwittingly kicked off a row over its latest guidance on pap smears when it recommended that ‘individuals with a cervix initiate cancer screening at age 25 years’.

Cervical cancer has a very real impact on women’s lives. Women need to be able to speak meaningfully about it. But when the medical language around the issue doesn’t match up with the reality of their lives, they can’t. This attempt at gender-neutral language, while trying to be inclusive, can be alienating for a lot of women who would never refer to themselves as ‘individuals with cervixes’.

The phrasing is odd, as it implies that anyone can have a cervix. As Stephen Pollard, editor of the Jewish Chronicle, asked sarcastically on Twitter: ‘How do I find out if I have a cervix? Do I need a scan? Or is there some sort of general concept that identified individuals with a cervix?’

There is also the fact that female biology was taboo for many centuries. Menstruation and lactation – key aspects of women’s health – were not discussed openly and were often shrouded in superstition and pseudoscience. Perinatal mental health has historically been an underfunded area of medicine even though postnatal depression and anxiety in women is very high (affecting somewhere between 10 and 20 per cent of women).

Things have changed, of course. We now speak more openly about these things and a great deal of care and attention is taken over women’s health by medical professionals. This is precisely why feminists in particular have been so outspoken about the specific use of the word ‘women’ in relation to pregnancy, menstruation and cervical cancer. If we just stop referring to women directly, it risks reversing decades of progress in taking women’s health issues seriously.

How do trans men feel about this issue? It is difficult to generalise, but some research by the NHS has found that trans men who are no longer living as women experience trepidation over the process of cervical screening. Perhaps they should be targeted with advice about cancer screening in a way that is relevant to their lives? It is important because their experience is unique and needs to be better understood in order to protect them from cervical cancer. But I doubt highly that trans men describe themselves as ‘individuals with a cervix’, either. Nobody speaks like this in the real world.

We need to get rid of this managerial mangling of language and be more authentic about how people really live. The non-specific, gender-neutral approach to being inclusive is way too impersonal and should be more empathetic to be truly effective and to serve different people’s needs well.

The discourse around trans rights and women has become unbearably zero-sum. A lot of this is to do with the fact that the debate has largely been conducted on Twitter where point-scoring and a mob mentality prevail. It’s always posed as ‘us vs them’ and very few people want to enter the discussion for fear of threats, boycotts, even the loss of work. As a result, much of the argument has stagnated and hasn’t moved forward at all.

It is a real pity in this instance, since regular cervical cancer screening is so important. That point has been lost in all the furore.


Democrats Losing Decades-Long Grip on Young Black Voters

Young black voters have a shocking message for Democrats: We’re just not that into you.

Perhaps following the lead of Kanye West, who abandoned the Democrats years ago, younger voters have grown tired of broken promises and white Democrats’ sense of entitlement to their vote.

Writing for The Conversation, academics Sam Fulwood III and David C. Barker report that black voters “over 60 remain among the most reliable of Democratic voters, and those between 40-59 are still pretty locked in as well, those under 30 (whom we oversampled to comprise half of our sample) are anything but.”

The numbers come from their recent survey of 1,215 African American voters in key battleground states like Pennsylvania and Florida.

At our sister site RedState, Brandon Morse adds:

It would appear that the black youth in America has become disillusioned with the Democratic party’s attempts to kowtow to them, and as such, their willingness to vote for Democrats is at an all-time low. In fact, most say that they feel the Democrat party takes them for granted. It expects their vote but does nothing to earn it besides claim that it’s “less racist” than Republicans.

I would add that Trump was elected by Obama-to-Trump voters in the Rust Belt and Upper Midwest. They were largely white, working-class voters who voted for Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012, but felt like he ignored their concerns once in office.

BLM Is So White

Something similar might be taking place in the minds of young black voters. Barker and Fulwood’s research showed that

Only 47% of [under-30 black voters] say that the party is welcoming to Black Americans, and only 43% say they trust Democrats in Congress to do what’s best for the Black community. Perhaps most strikingly, unlike their older counterparts, only half of those under 30 view the Democrats as any better than the Republicans on these scores.

While hardly good news for Republicans in the short term, changing attitudes could provide an opening for savvy GOP candidates in the future as those younger black Americans grow older — and more likely to vote.

Also affecting voter attitudes is decades of Democrat condescension, especially pronounced with alleged Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden.

In just one of many similar instances, Biden told radio host Charlamagne tha God, “If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump, then you ain’t black.”

Biden quickly apologized, but if a 77-year-old rich white guy was hoping to motivate the black youth vote by appearing on Charlamagne’s show, he blew the chance.

Young black voters are still black and still mostly Democrats, but they sure aren’t Biden Democrats.

Barker and Fulwood write:

Only 47% of those Black Americans under 30 years old that we surveyed plan to vote for the presumed Democratic presidential nominee, Joe Biden. That’s roughly the same percentage who have anything positive to say when asked what “one or two words come to mind” about the former vice president.

Those same younger voters told Fulwood and Barker that Democrats expect their support but don’t “do anything to deserve it other than claim to be ‘less racist’ than the alternative.”

Along that same line, Shay Hawkins wrote on Wednesday for Fox News that “White Democrats feel deeply entitled to the Black vote. This summer’s unrest has deepened that sense of entitlement, not checked it.”

Flipping that around, it might be closer to the truth that Democrats are well aware of the softening support from their most important voting bloc, and ginned up riots in order to bring black Americans back into the fold.

Will it work?

Progressive Democrats, mostly white, have used the ongoing unrest to push defunding or even eliminating the police. Biden recently said he wants police to get more money, but given that a President Biden would likely be little more than a figurehead for the far-left progressives who have taken over the party, what Biden wants probably means very little.

Democrats Defund the Police

However, Gallup just released numbers showing that “a large majority — 81 percent — of black Americans want the same or increased levels of police presence in their neighborhoods.”

Emphasis added, because WOW, what a losing issue for the Dems. Overall, Americans are opposed to #DefundThePolice by “only” 64%.

That means there are an awful lot of rich, white progressives who think they know what’s best for American’s black communities.

If the GOP can’t make hay out of that, then stick the proverbial fork in them.

Finally, I leave you with this riddle.

Question: What do you call a Democrat who wins 85% of black voters in almost any contested election?

Answer: The loser.



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

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

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

13 August, 2020

The Universal Mail-In Voting Sham

The major domestic threat to the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election.

Last Thursday, President Trump raised the idea of possibly delaying the November 3rd general election date due to concerns about the implications of universal mail-in voting for the integrity of the presidential election. The president tweeted, “With Universal Mail-In Voting (not Absentee Voting, which is good), 2020 will be the most INACCURATE & FRAUDULENT Election in history. It will be a great embarrassment to the USA. Delay the Election until people can properly, securely and safely vote????”

The mainstream media and the political establishment were aghast at the thought of President Trump using the coronavirus as a pretext to delay the presidential election. They need to take a deep breath. President Trump told reporters later in the day that he did not want any change in the election date, although he did warn of the possibility of significant delays in the tabulation and announcement of the final result. In any case, only Congress has the power under the Constitution to change the date of a presidential election. There’s no chance of Congress doing so this year. The Democrats’ opposition is a given, of course. But the Republicans in Congress are also adamantly against the idea. "Never in the history of the country, through wars and depressions and the Civil War, have we ever not had a federally scheduled election on time, and we'll find a way to do that again this November 3," said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

So why did President Trump bring up the possibility of election delay in his tweet (with four question marks) in the first place? The reason was to call attention to the dangers of universal mail-in voting that threaten the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election. There is a real potential for fraud, to be sure. But even in the absence of widespread fraud, universal mail-in voting faces significant challenges in ensuring a fair election result, starting with its reliance on the all too unreliable U.S. Postal Service (USPS). Moreover, states’ broad authority in the administration of elections in which their citizens vote, including federal elections, does not mean they can throw caution to the wind and dilute the voting power of clearly qualified voters. This will most certainly happen when states introducing universal mail-in voting for the first time in a presidential general election do so without robust safeguards to ensure the integrity of the mail-in process. There is too little time to devise and implement anything close to the safeguards that presently exist for in-person voting and the more limited use of absentee ballots as the exception rather than the rule. There are a few smaller states that have used all or majority mail-in voting for years with safeguards that have proven workable. However, such safeguards cannot simply be transplanted into the systems of larger states overnight.

The U.S. Postal Service has proven its inability to handle properly the huge anticipated volume of mail-in ballots in a timely and uniform fashion across the United States. As a Democratic commissioner and co-chair of the New York State Board of Elections said: “One of the big problems of going to a vote by mail system is that the Boards of Elections are now in partnership with the U.S. Postal Service for conducting the election.” We are still awaiting the final results in a few contests from this past June’s Democratic primary in New York where there was significant reliance on mail-in voting.

A major election law snafu involving New York’s Democratic primary illustrates the U.S. Postal Service’s problems. A class action lawsuit alleges that an executive order issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic broadening the use of mail-in ballots statewide led to confusion at the USPS. The USPS was supposed to ensure election mail was postmarked, even though it was postage paid. The USPS was provided e-mail instructions as to how the postmark should look. New York State Board of Education officials received assurances from the USPS that any ballot envelopes run through their automated machines would receive the necessary marking. But the confused U.S. Postal Service failed to place the required postmarks in thousands of cases. Thus, even though voters filled out their ballots correctly and mailed them in as instructed, the ballots were allegedly invalidated because they were missing the necessary postmarks from the post office.

The result, according to the class action complaint, was the disenfranchisement of “a massive number of voters, without any warning or anything resembling Constitutionally adequate protections.”

New York was not an isolated case. On July 7, 2020, for example, the Office of the Inspector General of the U.S. Postal Service issued a Management Alert entitled “Timeliness of Ballot Mail in the Milwaukee Processing & Distribution Center Service Area.” The alert found that for ballots processed in the Milwaukee area in connection with the April primary election, there were “issues related to the timeliness of ballots being mailed to voters, correcting misdelivery of ballots, an inability to track ballots, and inconsistent postmarking of ballots.”

Looking nationally, the Inspector General management alert identified potential issues in integrating state election offices’ vote-by-mail processes with the Postal Service processes, which could impact future elections. For instance, the alert noted potential concerns with “ballots postmarks, ballots mailed without mail tracking technology, and the ratio of Political and Election Mail coordinators to election offices in certain locations.”

In Ohio, there was evidently an “unintentional missort” of more than 300 ballots, according to the U.S. Postal Service’s chief operating officer, which caused them to be delivered too late to be counted by a county Board of Elections. “An unintentional missort of a tray of Butler County return ballots ultimately contributed to a gap in the mail flow, resulting in the delay,” he said, which he identified as “an opportunity for improvement.” No kidding!

For those Trump-haters who blame post office delays on certain changes instituted by the president’s Postmaster General appointee Louis DeJoy, think again. The examples of post office related problems with mail-in voting described above, as well as breakdowns in other states, occurred before the July 10, 2020 implementation date for the new Postmaster General's changes. We are talking about a record of sheer incompetence that, when replicated on a far larger scale in connection with this year’s general election, could well affect the final results in swing states such as Ohio and Wisconsin.

The U.S. Post Office recognizes its own shortcomings. But not Barack Obama. In his divisive remarks at the funeral of Rep. John Lewis, Obama demagogued the issue. He took time out to criticize those he said were “undermining the Postal Service in the run-up to an election that is going to be dependent on mailed-in ballots so people don’t get sick.”

The post office’s processing and delivery problems are reason enough to be concerned about the integrity of an election driven significantly by universal mail-in voting. But the problems run deeper than the post office itself. There are no consistent national standards for election officials to follow in administering extensive mail-in voting. Despite problems of its own with in-person voting, at least the person showing up to vote personally signs in and enters the voting booth to cast his or her vote. Put aside the issue of requiring credible voter ID, which affects both in-person and mail-in voting. A state unprepared to deal with huge volumes of mail-in ballots will have no way of even knowing whether the person whose name appears on the mail-in ballot is currently a resident of that state or is the same person who actually cast and mailed in the vote.

In the most liberal states like California, mail-in ballots themselves are sent automatically to all voters in the state. Anything goes. There are no time-tested procedures to reduce the potential for mail-in voter fraud or widespread mistakes, such as mailing ballots to the wrong address or to large residential buildings where they could get intercepted and filled out by someone other than the intended recipient. Without measures to effectively verify the accuracy of a state’s registration rolls and the current addresses and corresponding identities of the intended recipients of the ballots before sending out the mail-in ballots, contaminated election results are inevitable. The election results will also be questionable in the larger number of states where mail-in ballot applications will be sent automatically for the first time to all purported voters who don’t need any reason for requesting the mail-in ballots.

Some states allow a practice known as "ballot harvesting,” which allows any third parties to collect mail-in ballots from groups of voters such as residents in a housing complex or a nursing home and deliver the ballots for them. There is no clear uniform system for tracking who these third parties are and the chain of custody of the ballots between the time they were collected by the third parties and the time they were delivered to the appropriate destinations (assuming they were delivered at all).

At the other end of the spectrum are states that scrupulously limit who can return a voter’s ballot, limit the reasons for allowing someone to cast a mail-in ballot, or require precautions such as witness signatures, notarizations, or copies of voter identification. The ballots of voters in those states – whether cast in person or by mail – may well be cancelled out by invalid mail-in ballots for president accepted by states with sloppy mail-in ballot procedures.

States like Oregon and Colorado that have used mail-in voting extensively during several past election cycles at least have a track record managing large influxes of mailed ballots with trained personnel, technology and logistics infrastructure in place. We can’t say the same about a state like California that intends to plunge ahead into uncharted waters. For years, California was not even in full compliance with the National Voter Registration Act, which requires states to maintain accurate and current voter registration rolls.

There are no consistent national procedural standards for validating the integrity of universal mail-in balloting to ensure that every individual’s legitimate vote is given meaningful effect. In states with grossly inadequate safeguards for handling huge volumes of mail-in ballots, some voters will have their ballots invalidated for faults not attributable to the voters themselves. Other mail-in ballots will be counted even though they were not completed properly by qualified voters or postmarked and delivered by the legal deadline.

Voters across the country in states that have more careful procedures for mail-in voting are likely to find their votes cancelled out by illegitimate mail-in ballots in states with a standardless mail-in process.

The net result of a headlong rush this year to embrace universal mail-in voting across the country will be challenges to the legitimacy of the presidential election that will end up in prolonged litigation.


The Collapse of the Traditional American Family

The Joint Economic Committee of Congress has just produced an important new study titled “The Demise of the Happy Two-Parent Home.”

The report exhaustively presents data showing the shocking collapse of marriage and traditional family in America and then explores possible explanations for why it has happened.

In 1962, 71% of women ages 15-44 were married. By 2019, this was down to 42%.

In 1962, 5% of women ages 30-34 had never been married. By 2019, this was up to 35%.

In the 1960s, less than 1% of couples living together were not married. Today, it is over 12%.

And the percentage of births to unmarried women has risen from 5% in 1960 to 40% in 2018.

In 1970, 85% of children lived with two parents. By 2019, this was down to 70%.

The relevant questions are: Why should the collapse of marriage in the United States concern us? And why is this happening?

Regarding the first question, it depends on your values. To the large but dwindling number of Americans who care about traditional biblical morality, the collapse of marriage and family, the openness to other lifestyles prohibited by biblical morality, is of concern. It is not a healthy sign about what is happening in our culture.

For those whose concerns are more secular, the collapse of marriage is of concern because the practical results are not good.

A large body of research exists showing the social benefits of traditional marriage and family, and the social costs of their collapse.

There is the oft-quoted observation of Brookings Institution scholar Ron Haskins that American adults who follow three rules—finish high school; get a full-time job; and wait until at least age 21 to get married and have children—have a 2% chance of being poor and a 75% chance of being a middle-class wage earner.

In a recent interview, Nobel Prize-winning University of Chicago economist James Heckman observed: “The main barriers to developing effective policies for income and social mobility is fear of honest engagement in the changes in the American family and the consequences it has wrought. … The family is the source of life and growth. Families build values, encourage (or discourage) their children in school and out. Families—far more than schools—create or inhibit life opportunities.”

Why has traditional marriage and family so dramatically collapsed?

The report examines several possible factors, a major one being the dramatic growth in the welfare state supporting female heads of household.

According to the report, “The value of the safety net for single-mother families is 133 percent higher today than in 1940, and 56 percent higher than in 1960.”

Nevertheless, changes in behavior reflect changes in values. Why do values change?

Gallup has been asking since 1952, “How important would you say religion is in your own life—very important, fairly important or not very important.”

In 1952, 75% said “very important.” In 1970, this was down to about 60%, and by 1978, this was down to 52%.”

It was in this environment of a dramatic drop in Americans’ sense of the personal importance of religion that, in 1973, the Roe v. Wade decision legalized abortion.

A wave of court decisions banned religion from the public square. In 1962, prayer in public school was banished.

In 2002 Gallup polling, 45% said to have a baby outside of marriage was morally acceptable. By 2015, this was up to 61%, and by 2019, it was up to 64%.

What seems clear is that the collapse of marriage and family that has been occurring in our nation is not occurring in a vacuum. Values are changing.

For those who are worried about the situation, who want to see marriage and family strengthened again, the beginning must be awareness of the problem. To this end, the Joint Economic Committee report provides an important service to the nation.


Lance Armstrong’s Bike Shop Cancels Police Contract, Still Expect Cops to Protect from Threats

Last week, the Austin, Texas, bicycle shop founded by cycling star Lance Armstrong announced it was ending its contract with the Austin Police Department. However, since that announcement, the shop made it clear they still expect the police to protect them.

Wednesday, the Austin-based store announced that it was canceling its five-year contract with the Austin Police Department, worth nearly $350,000, and would not be renewing it, the Star-Telegram reported.

But even as the shop canceled its association with the police, it insisted that the police should continue to protect them from threats.

“We are not anti-police,” they exclaimed after saying the police are on the “wrong side of history.” The statement continued, saying, “We do believe our local police force will protect us from the very threats we are receiving right now.”

The management added that they had discussed the idea with employees, then insisted that refusal to work with the police is the “best” way “do our part to keep our customers safe and this city moving in the right direction.”

“Businesses can no longer be non-participants in the communities they serve. We chose what we think will do the most to suture these divides and place our community on the right side of history,” the store, opened by Armstrong in 2008, said in a statement posted to Facebook.


Transgender Surgery Does Not Improve Mental Health, Academics Belatedly Admit

Last year, a groundbreaking study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry (AJP) claimed to prove that transgender surgery improves the mental health of people suffering from gender dysphoria (the persistent and painful identification with the gender opposite one’s biological sex). Earlier this month, however, AJP issued a “correction” that acknowledged key flaws in the study and admitted that the true results “demonstrated no advantage of surgery.” This represents a severe blow to the transgender ideological takeover of American medicine.

The original AJP article “Reduction in Mental Health Treatment Utilization Among Transgender Individuals After Gender-Affirming Surgeries: A Total Population Study,” written by Richard Bränström, Ph.D., and John E. Pachankis, Ph.D. and published on October 4, 2019, analyzed a newly available dataset from Sweden. The study found that people with gender dysphoria were “about six times as likely” to have a mood and anxiety disorder health-care visit and far more likely to be hospitalized for a suicide attempt.

The study compared gender dysphoric people who did not take cross-sex hormones or undergo transgender surgery with those who did. The authors admitted that “years since initiating hormone treatment was not significantly related to likelihood of mental health treatment,” but claimed that “increased time since last gender-affirming surgery was associated with reduced mental health treatment.”

Yet the study faced severe criticism from many quarters. Dr. Andre Van Mol, adolescent sexuality committee co-chair at the American College of Pediatricians (not to be confused with the pro-transgender American Academy of Pediatricians), served as lead author on one of six letters to the editor of AJP critical of the study’s methods and findings. Van Mol’s team included endocrinologist Michael Laidlaw and renowned psychiatrists Miriam Grossman and Prof. Paul McHugh.

On Saturday, August 1, AJP published a “correction” to the study which is more of a retraction. AJP sought “statistical consultations” on the study and the authors agreed with the criticisms these consultations highlighted. “Upon request, the authors reanalyzed the data to compare outcomes between individuals diagnosed with gender incongruence who had received gender-affirming surgical treatments and those diagnosed with gender incongruence who had not.”

This new analysis “demonstrated no advantage of surgery in relation to subsequent mood or anxiety disorder-related health care visits or prescriptions or hospitalizations following suicide attempts in that comparison.”

In what appears to be a desperate attempt to preserve the study, AJP minimized the monumental change in this conclusion, merely admitting that its pro-transgender conclusion was “too strong.”

Given that the study used neither a prospective cohort design nor a randomized controlled trial design, the conclusion that “the longitudinal association between gender-affirming surgery and lower use of mental health treatment lends support to the decision to provide gender-affirming surgeries to transgender individuals who seek them” is too strong.

In a press release responding to the correction, the American College of Pediatricians argued that “the study, and transgender affirming interventions, now seem invalidated.”

Indeed, the correction does invalidate the original conclusion of the study, much-touted last year for its pro-transgender results. Many activists inside and outside of the medical field are extremely invested in such studies to bolster the transgender narrative since basic biology undermines it.

According to the transgender activists who have spread throughout America’s medical establishment, gender dysphoria is devastating for a patient’s mental health, and the only way to help such a patient is to encourage transgender identity as the resolution of that dysphoria. Rather than encouraging a person to accept his or her biological sex, these activists claim that the best way to combat depression and prevent suicide is to encourage a cross-sex identity, even to the point of providing cross-sex hormones and performing dangerous experimental surgeries.

These activists claim that the root problem is a lack of acceptance — gender dysphoric people experience depression and commit suicide because society does not accept their cross-sex identification. Societal acceptance and experimental “treatments” to “affirm” an identity at odds with a person’s biological sex are the only hope for struggling people.

But this argument is insane. Many people who once identified as transgender and later embraced their biological sex (known as detransitioners) have come forward, lamenting the irreversible changes they made to their own bodies in search of a false identity. Their tragic stories seem reminiscent of anorexic girls who endanger their health by starving themselves, falsely thinking that they are fat.

Real-Life Victims of the Transgender ‘Cult’

“I am a real, live 22-year-old woman, with a scarred chest and a broken voice, and five o’clock shadow because I couldn’t face the idea of growing up to be a woman, that’s my reality,” admitted Cari Stella in a personal YouTube video. A man who formerly identified as a woman and had his male genitals removed and replaced with a facsimile of female parts later lamented his “Frankenstein hack job.”

Some misled doctors are actually harming kids as young as 8 years old by giving them so-called puberty-blocking drugs. Dr. Michael Laidlaw, an independent private practice endocrinologist in Rocklin, Calif., said of such drugs, “I call it a development blocker — it’s actually causing a disease.” He told PJ Media that this “treatment” causes hypogonadotropic hypogonadism, a condition where the brain fails to send the right signal to the gonads to make the hormones necessary for development.

“An endocrinologist might treat a condition where a female’s testosterone levels are going to be outside the normal range. We’ll treat that and we’re aware of metabolic problems. At the same time, an endocrinologist may be giving high levels of testosterone to a female to ‘transition’ her,” Laidlaw explained.

Even in its initial version, the AJP study admitted there was no evidence that cross-sex hormones improve mental health. Now, the authors have admitted that even surgery does not necessarily help.

Late last year, James Shupe, the first American to officially change his legal sex status to “non-binary,” petitioned to have his male sex once again recognized on official documents.

“Despite six years of hormonal treatments, my sex was immutable, and I remained the same biological male I was at the time of my birth. In hindsight, my sex change to non-binary was a psychologically harmful legal fiction, and I desire to reclaim my male birth sex,” Shupe wrote in his petition.

Detransitioners exist, and they prove that societal acceptance of transgender identity and experimental “treatments” like transgender surgery are not the only solution to gender dysphoria. Ultimately, human beings are either male or female, down to the cellular level. The few people who suffer from disorders of sexual development (referred to as intersex) are not evidence of a “third sex,” nor is their existence an argument for transgender identity.

The rush to embrace transgender identity has caused serious problems in the medical field. Last year, a pregnant woman rushed to the hospital with abdominal pains. Since she identified as a man, however, the doctors immediately dismissed the idea that she could be going into labor. They did not give her the treatment she needed, and the baby died. Tragically, the doctors took the entirely wrong lesson from the experience. Rather than returning to the basic acknowledgment of biological sex, they insisted that this woman was “rightly classified as a man,” and that doctors simply can’t assume that “men” won’t be pregnant.

The retraction of this AJP study undermines the medical argument in favor of redefining basic biology. It should serve as a wake-up call to the medical community, showing that the dangerous transgender movement is not worth its high cost.



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

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

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

12 August, 2020

Seattle City Council’s Plan to Gut Police Department By 50 Percent Has Collapsed

So, there’s some good news coming out of Seattle, but let’s also stress that “good” is for lack of a better term here. The plan to gut the Seattle Police Department by 50 percent has collapsed. The overall plan to abolish its police department, which is the goal for the far left, appears to be put on hold for now. Some council members cited the labor laws, noting that if they lost a dispute, they would have to rehire the officers they purged plus back pay. They are moving forward with cutting 100 officers, getting rid of its mounted units, and the navigation squads, who deal with the homeless (via Seattle Times):

Proposals to reduce the Seattle Police Department by up to 100 officers through layoffs and attrition won unanimous City Council support Wednesday, while proposals to reduce police-command pay and stop removing homeless encampments also cleared hurdles.

Final votes on the moves are still to come next week, and the council rejected a push to “defund” the Police Department’s remaining 2020 budget by 50% and reinvest that money, as many Black Lives Matter protesters have urged.

The amendments passed in a committee Wednesday are expected to save only about $3 million this year (the Police Department’s annual budget tops $400 million), partly due to the assumption the layoffs wouldn’t be carried out until November. In order to provide community organizations with $17 million to start scaling up nonpolice solutions right away, council members intend mostly to borrow money, rather than redirect police funds

Still, council members said they were sending a message as they voted 9-0 on the midyear budget amendments that Mayor Jenny Durkan and police Chief Carmen Best have vehemently opposed.

“We’re not going to be bullied into doing nothing,” Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda said. “It’s important to show community members that we hear them, that we’re working towards the same goal and not just saying no.

Supporters of gutting the police recently showed up at the home of Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best. The whole situation is just out of control. Only a left-wing city could have armed leftists seized a portion of the city, have it quasi-endorsed by state and local leaders, and then come to the conclusion that the police department is the problem and has to be cut.

The proposal to abolish the entire police department is no negotiation ploy. It’s what the left-wing wants to do in this country…because social workers would be better responding to armed robberies. It’s nonsense. Keep an eye on Minneapolis. Right now, a ballot initiative to disband its police department after the George Floyd incident has been held up in order for a further review of the language, but it should never get that far. Second, again, this is what the Left wants.


I'm all for girl power - but who's fighting for our boys?

London -- Last week began with a dinner at The Garrick Club and finished in AllBright, a young women's networking club.

The Garrick is the complete opposite of AllBright. Founded in 1831, it still – staggeringly – does not accept female members, and its rules state that the club should never be used for business, although we all know that some of the most important connections are made without a laptop or sheaf of papers on the table.

The Garrick epitomises the culture of the old boys' network that has kept men at the top for centuries. Despite all the advances of recent years, many women are still fighting against lower pay and for a greater voice.

But for the vast majority of today's younger generation of men, for whom that old-school-tie culture is as distant and irrelevant as the land of hope and glory, it must at times seem as if the playing field, rather than being levelled, is skewed in the opposite direction.

You only have to look at Instagram and millions of T-shirts to see the flood of female empowerment messaging and hashtags urging women to feel proud, clever, strong and beautiful. I might be missing something, but I'm not spotting any of that coming from men.

And I don't believe that's because they all feel they are already proud, clever, strong and handsome. University entrance is now dominated by girls, with even the most traditional Oxford colleges showing a greater female UK intake last year.

The Booker Prize longlist of 13 features only four male writers, explained by the fact that apparently nobody is interested in reading their stories.

Even the phrase 'old master' as a descriptor of artistic value is under threat. Close to my home there is a small, newly opened women's workspace offering a place 'to work and feel better'.

But flip that over and imagine what the reaction would be to a placard heralding a men-only venue. It would be instantly pilloried as a bastion of sex discrimination and I can't picture a man who would feel comfortable joining it.

No doubt the fact that I'm the mother of a son makes me feel this way (interestingly, I've no evidence that he shares my concerns).

But it seems to me that in the laudable mission to promote women, we are in danger of creating a generation of disenfranchised young men, who are left there holding the door open for us, not from good manners, but because they can no longer get through themselves.


DHS Exposes the Horrible Truth About Violent Antifa Riots in Portland

Friday marked the 70th consecutive night of violent antifa riots in Portland. Early this month, the rioters shifted the focus of their violent attacks from the federal courthouse in downtown Portland to the Penumbra Kelly police building in a residential neighborhood. Since the clashes no longer center on federal property and federal law enforcement, the Democratic narrative of excusing or ignoring the violence in order to demonize federal officers and President Donald Trump has fallen apart. But myths about the federal involvement persist.

This week, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released a document dispelling three big myths about the riots and the federal response.

DHS explained that on July 29, Gov. Kate Brown (D-Ore.) “finally agreed to do what the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has demanded for months: step up and work with federal authorities to stop the nightly criminal violence directed at the Hatfield Federal Courthouse in Portland. Such cooperation between federal and state/local law enforcement is routinely done in every city in the United States.”

“As a result of the governor’s long-delayed, though welcomed, change in direction, the area of the Hatfield Federal Courthouse has finally seen a stark downward trend in violence perpetrated towards federal facilities and federal law enforcement officers,” DHS added. Even so, “misconceptions and falsehoods persist.”

DHS focused on three specific myths.

1. Federal officers are withdrawing as police replace them

While state and local police are finally permitted to work with federal law enforcement as per Brown’s agreement, federal officers have not left the area. “There has been no reduction in federal presence; federal law enforcement officers remain in Portland at augmented levels,” DHS insisted. “DHS officers are working with a robust contingent of Oregon State Police (OSP) officers to secure the courthouse. OSP has been policing the property outside the fencing surrounding federal properties and has partnered with federal officers behind the fencing.”

The increased federal presence in Portland will remain “until the Department is certain that federal property is safe and a change in posture will not hinder DHS’s Congressionally mandated duty to protect it.”

DHS noted that “while the violence in Portland is much improved, the situation remains dynamic and volatile, with acts of violence still ongoing, and no determination of timetables for reduction of protective forces has yet been made. Evaluations remain ongoing.”

2. Violence is down because federal officers are less visible

Democrats and left-leaning activists and media outlets have pushed the narrative that President Donald Trump’s decision to send federal officers has exacerbated the violence in Portland. According to this narrative, the decreasing violence against federal property should be a direct result of the federal officers becoming less visible.

The violent riots long predated Trump’s decision, however. As DHS noted, “The increased presence of federal officers was a direct response to the longstanding violence already occurring in Portland. [Federal Protective Service officers] experienced nightly violence against federal officers and property going back to late May.”

Mayor Ted Wheeler (D-Portland) tweeted on July 3 that the “nightly violence” had been “going on for more than a month” and needed to “end.” Portland Police had also declared multiple riots before federal presence increased.

“Simply put, just because the media and others were not paying as much attention to Portland’s violence prior to the DHS surge doesn’t mean the violence wasn’t occurring,” DHS added.

As DHS noted, Portland Police reported its highest number of homicide investigations in over 30 years after Wheeler decided to disband the police’s Gun Violence Reduction Team amid calls to defund police.

3. Violence decreased because state police are more effective than federal officers

DHS also addressed the idea that violence in Portland has decreased because Oregon State Police are more effective than federal officers.

In reality, “Portland’s current downward trend in riot activity is a direct result of long-awaited coordination between federal, state and local law enforcement agencies that DHS demanded to see on the ground for weeks,” DHS insisted.

“Every major American city regularly coordinates with DHS law enforcement to maintain law and order—particularly around federal properties entrusted to DHS for protection. For nearly two months, DHS demanded cooperation with state and local law enforcement in Portland. It wasn’t until DHS officers suffered more than 240 injuries that Oregon’s Governor finally agreed to do her job,” DHS added, scathingly.

The federal law enforcement department condemned “state and local officials” like Wheeler and Brown for having “put politics head of public safety.” This sent the message that rioters “could attack federal property and the officers defending it and then flee from the federal area of operations without any consequences from state or local law enforcement. Now that state and local leaders have finally agreed to step up and do their job, would-be rioters face the kind of coordinated enforcement response they should have been in place all along.”

Ted Cruz Video Eviscerates Democrats’ False Narrative About ‘Peaceful Protesters’
Tragically, the violent antifa riots have continued in Portland as rioters target the Penumbra Kelly building instead of the federal courthouse.

On Friday night, rioters with body armor and shields squared off with police in a residential neighborhood. They threw concrete, frozen eggs, rocks, and commercial-grade fireworks at the cops in a riot that lasted well past 1 a.m.

On Thursday, Mayor Ted Wheeler (D-Portland) finally vocally condemned the violent antifa rioters after the mob tried to burn down the Penumbra Kelly building on Wednesday night.

“The attack was immediate, it was intentional, and it was planned. It was intended to cause serious injury or death, and it very well could have,” Wheeler said at a press conference. “When you commit arson with an accelerant, in an attempt to burn down a building that is occupied by people that you have intentionally trapped inside, you are not demonstrating. You are attempting to commit murder.”

Why did he not issue similar condemnations when rioters repeatedly tried to burn down the federal courthouse — with federal officers inside? Wheeler should have condemned the violent riots using this kind of rhetoric from the beginning. Instead, he focused on blaming President Donald Trump.

Also on Thursday, Wheeler urged peaceful protesters to stay away from the crowds that would devolve into violent antifa riots. “If you are a non-violent demonstrator, and you don’t want to be part of intentional violence, please stay away from these areas. Our community must say that this violence is not Portland, that these actions do not reflect our values, and these crimes are distracting from reform, not advancing it,” he said.

Why did he not issue such a warning earlier? Rather than condemning the riots, Wheeler himself joined the riots in person. Even as rioters set off explosives at the federal courthouse behind him, Wheeler insisted that the federal officers had no justification for using tear gas.

The twisted leftist narrative about the riots is finally falling apart. Even The New York Times has admitted the violence and destruction of the Capitol Hill Occupied Protest (CHOP) “autonomous zone” in Seattle, which the paper once hailed as a “homeland for racial justice.” As the narrative continues to fall apart, Democrats should pay a steep political price for lying about the violence for two months.


What Happened When New York Put Homeless People in Luxury Hotels? Double Face Palm

The homeless problem in New York City is bad and getting worse. City leaders decided to fix the problem by putting up hundreds of sex offenders, mental patients, and drug addicts in Manhattan luxury hotels.

How’s that working out for ya?

New York Post:

Upper West Side residents say three hotels that are housing hundreds of homeless men during the coronavirus pandemic have turned the area into a spectacle of public urination, catcalling and open drug use.

Among those staying at the luxury Belleclaire on Broadway and the Lucerne on West 79th Street, and the more down-market Belnord on West 87th Street, are people who are mentally ill, recovering from drug addictions, and registered sex offenders.

Ten sex offenders are staying in a single hotel — the Belleclaire, which is just one block from the playground of PS 87.


A nanny in the genteel neighborhood told of being offered crack while with her two-year-old charge.

“It doesn’t feel safe anymore,” nanny Michele McDowall, 39, told The Post.

She said she was recently offered crack by a pair of homeless men as she wheeled a toddler along Riverside Park at 79th Street.

“You want to buy crack?” she said they shouted repeatedly as she hurried past, and as the frightened 2-year-old girl in the stroller put her hands over her ears and cried, “Too loud!”

Nice. But maybe the finger of blame should also be pointed at the Department of Homeland Security, which is paying 75 percent of the costs of this social experiment.

“The DHS is a rogue agency,” one local community board member said of the homeless influx, noting that residents were given no input and little or no notice of the move.

The board member, who asked to not be identified by name, said they were told the city was paying the hotels $175 a day per homeless person or “two guys in a room at $350 a day.”

“You do the math,” the board members said. “It’s a lot of money.”

Obviously, residents of the neighborhood are insufficiently woke. If homeless people want to urinate or defecate on the sidewalk or in the street, or on your front steps, who are you to say they can’t?

What has really upset residents in the neighborhood has been housing 10 sex offenders a block from a public school. What genius thought that one up?

There are also four offenders whose victims were children: Ronald Butler, 62,  convicted in June 2013 of raping a 16-year-old girl; Eddie Daniel, 59, convicted of abusing a 10-year-old in 2011; Jonathan Evans, 29, convicted of abusing a 6-year-old; and Michael Hughes, 55, convicted of possessing child pornography in 2007.

“I tell my 10-year old, ‘I’ll be back in two minutes’ — I guess I won’t do that anymore,” mom Mariane Dabo told The Post at the playground after learning of the sex offenders. “It’s scary.”

A group of rabbis asked to see the mayor. No response. The local PTA sent a concerned letter. It was ignored.

Maybe Mayor de Blasio and his administration are too humiliated to answer.


11 August, 2020 

Whiteness Lessons

I reproduce below some excerpts from a big NYT article about "White Fragility" -- a summary of Robin DiAngelo's message and her book of that name

The underlying fact behind her work is that in all sorts of ways whites do better than blacks.  Her reaction to that is rage and her explanation for it is that whites are racist in relation to blacks. She appears to think that she can talk people out of that racism but admits that she herself is racist. Her definition of racism is very wide however.  What would normally be regarded as human virtues are for her part of white racism.

Basically, her message is an incoherent rave against white society with the only message being that we all have to change our thinking into some sort of alternative consciousness.  How, when, where and why we do that is unclear, however.  It makes sense as a cry of rage only.  There is nothing rational or constructive about it. Anger is attention-getting, however, so a lot of people listen to her in the hope of learning something. What they learn from it however is probably nothing more than a weak sharing of her diffuse rage and a determination to be nicer to blacks.

Some of the paragraphs I reproduce below make the obvious criticism that her focus on race can be counter-productive:  With blacks  learning that all their failures are due to others and whites learning that they have to make extra efforts with blacks, which is undoubtedly contrary to ideals of equality.

At no point does the lady address obvious problems with her account.  Why, for instance, do Africans do much better in White America than in Black Africa?

And the fact that various minorities such as Chinese and Japanese Americans do well would seem, on her account, to mean that whites become non-racist in dealings with those groups.  More realistically, there is racism against such groups but it is minor and they overcome it without assistance from white do-gooders.  Why cannot blacks do the same?  So it would seem that at least part of the disadvantage that blacks experience must lie with blacks themselves.  Querying that is surely the only likely way forward.

Robin DiAngelo and her book “White Fragility” have become a national phenomenon. But do the approaches taken by her and other antiracism trainers really serve the cause of racial equality?

Last July, in San Francisco, I attended three of DiAngelo’s sessions. ‘‘I wasn’t raised to see my race as saying anything relevant about me,’’ she declared to a largely white crowd in the Mission district’s 360-seat Brava Theater. Her audience had paid between $65 and $160 per ticket to hear her speak for three and a half hours. The place was sold out.

‘‘I will not coddle your comfort,’’ she went on. She gestured crisply with her hands. ‘‘I’m going to name and admit to things white people rarely name and admit.’’ Scattered Black listeners called out encouragement.

Then she specified the predominant demographic in the packed house: white progressives. ‘‘I know you. Oh, white progressives are my specialty.

Because I am a white progressive.’’ She paced tightly on the stage. ‘‘And I have a racist worldview.’’ Soon she projected facts and photographs onto the screen behind her.

No lone image offered anything surprising, yet the series caused a cumulative jolt: the percentage of state governors who are white, of the 10 richest people in the country who are white, of the ‘‘people who directed the 100 top-grossing films of all time, worldwide’’ - all the percentages over 90 - and so on. The onslaught of statistics was followed by a seemingly innocent picture of an all-white wedding celebration (about which DiAngelo asked her white listeners whether their own weddings were or would be just as pale), a photo of an all-white funeral (‘‘from cradle to grave,’’ she said, white people, no matter how liberal, tend to exist in overwhelmingly white spaces ‘‘without anyone conveying that we’ve lost anything - with a deeply internalized absence of any sense of loss’’), a screenshot of a Jeopardy board - during the semifinals of the 2014 collegiate championship - where the only category left entirely unselected by the contestants was African- American history (‘‘we don’t know our history,’’ we ‘‘separate it out and see it as their history’’), all of this culminating in a photograph showing a female silhouette standing without an umbrella in a torrential downpour. Messages of pre-eminent white value and Black insignificance, DiAngelo pronounced, ‘‘are raining down on us 24/7, and there are no umbrellas.’’ She declaimed: ‘‘My psychosocial development was inculcated in this water,’’ and ‘‘internalized white superiority is seeping out of my pores.’’ And: ‘‘White supremacy - yes, it includes extremists or neo-Nazis, but it is also a highly descriptive sociological term for the society we live in, a society in which white people are elevated as the ideal for humanity, and everyone else is a deficient version.’’ And Black people, she said, are cast as the most deficient. ‘‘There is something profoundly anti-Black in this culture.’’

At some point after our answers, DiAngelo poked fun at the myriad ways that white people ‘‘credential’’ themselves as not-racist. I winced. I hadn’t meant to imply that I was anywhere close to free of racism, yet was I ‘‘credentialing’’? And today, after a quick disclaimer acknowledging the problem with what I was about to do, I heard myself off ering up, again, these same nonracist bona fides and neglecting to speak about the eff ects of having been soaked, all my life, by racist rain. I was, DiAngelo would have said, slipping into the pattern she first termed ‘‘white fragility’’ in an academic article in 2011: the propensity of white people to fend off suggestions of racism, whether by absurd denials (‘‘I don’t see color’’) or by overly emotional displays of defensiveness or solidarity (DiAngelo’s book has a chapter titled ‘‘White Women’s Tears’’ and subtitled ‘‘But you are my sister, and I share your pain!’’) or by varieties of the personal history I’d provided.

White fragility, in DiAngelo’s formulation, is far from weakness.

It is ‘‘weaponized.’’ Its evasions are actually a liberal white arsenal, a means of protecting a frail moral ego, defending a righteous self-image and, ultimately, perpetuating racial hierarchies, because what goes unexamined will never be upended. White fragility is a way for well-meaning white people to guard what race has granted them, all they haven’t earned.

‘‘I have come to see white privilege as an invisible package of unearned assets that I can count on cashing in each day, but about which I was ‘meant’ to remain oblivious,’’ one of the discipline’s influential thinkers, Peggy McIntosh, a researcher at the Wellesley Centers for Women, has written. ‘‘White privilege is like an invisible weightless knapsack of special provisions, assurances, tools, maps, guides, codebooks, passports, visas, clothes, compass, emergency gear and blank checks.’’ Borrowing from feminist scholarship and critical race theory, whiteness studies challenges the very nature of knowledge, asking whether what we define as scientific research and scholarly rigor, and what we venerate as objectivity, can be ways of excluding alternate perspectives and preserving white dominance. DiAngelo likes to ask, paraphrasing the philosopher Lorraine Code: ‘‘From whose subjectivity does the ideal of objectivity come?’’ DiAngelo’s ‘‘White Fragility’’ article was, in a sense, an epistemological exercise. It examined white not-knowing. When it was published in 2011 in The International Journal of Critical Pedagogy, it reached the publication’s niche audience. But three years later it was quoted in Seattle’s alternative newspaper The Stranger, during a fierce debate - with white defensiveness on full view - about the Seattle Gilbert & Sullivan Society’s casting of white actors as Asians in a production of ‘‘The Mikado.’’ ‘‘That changed my life,’’ she said. The phrase ‘‘white fragility’’ went viral, and requests to speak started to soar; she expanded the article into a book and during the year preceding Covid-19 gave eight to 10 presentations a month, sometimes pro bono but mostly at up to $15,000 per event.

White culture, for her, is all about habits of oppressive thought that are taken for granted and rarely perceived, let alone questioned. One ‘‘unnamed logic of Whiteness,’’ she wrote with her frequent co-author, the education professor Ozlem Sensoy, in a 2017 paper published in The Harvard Educational Review, ‘‘is the presumed neutrality of White European Enlightenment epistemology.’’ The paper is an attempt to persuade universities that if they want to diversify their faculties, they should put less weight on conventional hiring criteria. The modern university, it says, ‘‘with its ‘experts’ and its privileging of particular forms of knowledge over others (e.g., written over oral, history over memory, rationalism over wisdom)’’ has ‘‘validated and elevated positivistic, White Eurocentric knowledge over non-White, Indigenous and non-European knowledges.’’ Such academic prose isn’t the language of DiAngelo’s workshops or book, but the idea of a society rigged at its intellectual core underpins her lessons.

One critique leveled at antiracism training is that it just may not work. Frank Dobbin, a Harvard sociology professor, has published research on attempts, over three decades, to combat bias in over 800 U.S. companies, including a 2016 study with Alexandra Kalev in The Harvard Business Review. (As far back as the early ‘60s, he recounts in his book ‘‘Inventing Equal Opportunity,’’ Western Electric, responding to a Kennedy-administration initiative to enhance equity, presented lectures by Kenneth Clark and James Baldwin to company managers.) Dobbin’s research shows that the numbers of women or people of color in management do not increase with most anti-bias education. ‘‘There just isn’t much evidence that you can do anything to change either explicit or implicit bias in a half-day session,’’ Dobbin warns. ‘‘Stereotypes are too ingrained.’’ When we first talked, and I described DiAngelo’s approach, he said, ‘‘I certainly agree with what she’s saying’’ about our white-supremacist society.

But he noted that new research that he’s revising for publication suggests that anti-bias training can backfire, with adverse eff ects especially on Black people, perhaps, he speculated, because training, whether consciously or subconsciously, ‘‘activates stereotypes.’’ When we spoke again in June, he emphasized an additional finding from his data: the likelihood of backlash ‘‘if people feel that they’re being forced to go to diversity training to conform with social norms or laws.’’ Donald Green, a professor of political science at Columbia, and Betsy Levy Paluck, a professor of psychology and public aff airs at Princeton, have analyzed almost 1,000 studies of programs to lessen prejudice, from racism to homophobia, in situations from workplaces to laboratory settings. ‘‘We currently do not know whether a wide range of programs and policies tend to work on average,’’ they concluded in a 2009 paper published in The Annual Review of Psychology, which incorporated measures of attitudes and behaviors. They’ve just refined their analysis, with the help of two Princeton researchers, Chelsey Clark and Roni Porat. ‘‘As the study quality goes up,’’ Paluck told me, ‘‘the eff ect size dwindles.’’ Still, none of the research, with its dim evaluation of efficacy, has yet focused on the particular bold, antisupremacist consciousness raising that has taken hold over the past few years - and that may well become even more bold now. ‘‘I’m not afraid of the word ‘confrontational,’ ‘‘ Singleton said, and he predicted, in one of his more optimistic moments during our post-Floyd talks, that the society will be all the more ready for this because ‘‘the racism we’re seeing is so graphically violent,’’ leaving white people less willing or able to ‘‘operate in delusion.’’ Another critique has been aimed at DiAngelo, as her book sales have skyrocketed. From both sides of the political divide, she has been accused of peddling racial reductionism by branding all white people as supremacist. The Fox News host Tucker Carlson has called her ideas more racist than Louis Farrakhan’s, and the journalist Matt Taibbi has railed that her arguments amount to a kind of ‘‘Hitlerian race theory.’’ This isn’t Singleton’s concern. He thinks back to a long line of Black writers on race, and what he sees in the DiAngelo phenomenon is that ‘‘it takes a white person to say these things for white people to listen. In some ways, that is the very indication of the problem in this country.’’ He wrestled painfully with this at the outset of his career. At a training he conducted for educators in San Diego in the mid-’90s, there was ‘‘a collision,’’ he recalled, between him and the white people in the room.

‘‘I lost it, and they lost it,’’ he said; the session came to an early end, because of their ‘‘resistance to Black intelligence’’ and because ‘‘they were struggling with me as a Black person. As people of color who are facilitating learning about race for white people, we need to be very talented in terms of our facilitation skills.’’ One way he has grounded himself and gained poise is by positioning himself, in his mind, as the descendant of ancestral Africans who were ‘‘the first teachers.’’ Yet there may be something worth heeding in those who have resisted today’s antiracism training.

 I talked with DiAngelo, Singleton, Amante-Jackson and Kendi about the possible problem. If the aim is to dismantle white supremacy, to redistribute power and influence, I asked them in various forms, do the messages of today’s antiracism training risk undermining the goal by depicting an overwhelmingly rigged society in which white people control nearly all the outcomes, by inculcating the idea that the traditional skills needed to succeed in school and in the upper levels of the workplace are somehow inherently white, by spreading the notion that teachers shouldn’t expect traditional skills as much from their Black students, by unwittingly teaching white people that Black people require allowances, warrant extraordinary empathy and can’t really shape their own destinies? With DiAngelo, my worries led us to discuss her Harvard Educational Review paper, which cited ‘‘rationalism’’ as a white criterion for hiring, a white qualification that should be reconsidered.

Shouldn’t we be hiring faculty, I asked her, who fully possess, prize and can impart strong reasoning skills to students, because students will need these abilities as a requirement for high-paying, high-status jobs? In answering, she returned to the theme of unconscious white privilege, comparing it to the way right-handed people are unaware of how frequently the world favors right-handedness.

I pulled us away from the metaphorical, giving the example of corporate law as a lucrative profession in which being hired depends on acute reasoning. She replied that if a criterion ‘‘consistently and measurably leads to certain people’’ being excluded, then we have to ‘‘challenge’’ the criterion. ‘‘It’s the outcome,’’ she emphasized; the result indicated the racism.

Then she said abruptly, ‘‘Capitalism is so bound up with racism. I avoid critiquing capitalism - I don’t need to give people reasons to dismiss me.

But capitalism is dependent on inequality, on an underclass. If the model is profit over everything else, you’re not going to look at your policies to see what is most racially equitable.’’ While I was asking about whether her thinking is conducive to helping Black people displace white people on high rungs and achieve something much closer to equality in our badly flawed world, it seemed that she, even as she gave workshops on the brutal hierarchies of here and now, was entertaining an alternate and even revolutionary reality. She talked about top law firms hiring for ‘‘resiliency and compassion.’’ Singleton spoke along similar lines. I asked whether guiding administrators and teachers to put less value, in the classroom, on capacities like written communication and linear thinking might result in leaving Black kids less ready for college and competition in the labor market. ‘‘If you hold that white people are always going to be in charge of everything,’’ he said, ‘‘then that makes sense.’’ He invoked, instead, a journey toward ‘‘a new world, a world, first and foremost, where we have elevated the consciousness, where we pay attention to the human being.’’ The new world, he continued, would be a place where we aren’t ‘‘armed to distrust, to be isolated, to hate,’’ a place where we ‘‘actually love.’’ Amante-Jackson, too, sounded all but utopian as she envisioned a movement away ‘‘from capitalist, Western’’ ideals and described a future education system that would be transformed: built around students’ ‘‘telling their stories and listening to the stories of others’’ and creating ‘‘in us the feeling that we belong to each other as people.’’ Before I phoned Kendi, I reread ‘‘How to Be an Antiracist.’’ ‘‘Capitalism is essentially racist; racism is essentially capitalist,’’ he writes. ‘‘They were birthed together from the same unnatural causes, and they shall one day die together from unnatural causes.’’ I asked him whether, given the world as it is, many of the lessons of today’s antiracism training might inadvertently hamper the struggle for racial equality. ‘‘I think Americans need to decide whether this is a multicultural nation or not,’’ he said. ‘‘If Americans decide that it is, what that means is we’re going to have multiple cultural standards and multiple perspectives. It creates a scenario in which we would have to have multiple understandings of what achievement is and what qualifications are. That is part of the problem. We haven’t decided, as a country, even among progressives and liberals, whether we desire a multicultural nation or a unicultural nation.’’ Ron Ferguson, a Black economist, faculty member at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and director of Harvard’s Achievement Gap Initiative, is a political liberal who gets impatient with such thinking about conventional standards and qualifications. ‘‘The cost,’’ he told me in January, ‘‘is underemphasizing excellence and performance and the need to develop competitive prowess.’’ With a soft, rueful laugh, he said I wouldn’t find many economists sincerely taking part in the kind of workshops I was writing about.

‘‘When the same group of people keeps winning over and over again,’’ he added, summarizing the logic of the trainers, ‘‘it’s like the game must be rigged.’’ He didn’t reject a degree of rigging, but said, ‘‘I tend to go more quickly to the question of how can we get prepared better to just play the game.’’ When we talked again in June, the interracial protests had infused Ferguson with some optimism.

‘‘I have this mental image of plants that have been growing in the shade,’’ he said of the impediments Black people too often have to take for granted in our society, ‘‘and all of a sudden the shade starts to be removed, and these plants start to thrive in ways they never imagined they could.

I think there’s a possibility of a blossoming if the society starts to see us as fully human, removing the cloud of white-supremacist assumptions.’’ But, he suggested, ‘‘in this moment we’re at risk of giving short shrift to dealing with qualifications.

You can try to be competitive by equipping yourself to run the race that’s already scheduled, or you can try to change the race. There may be some things about the race I’d like to change, but my priority is to get people prepared to run the race that’s already scheduled.’’

More HERE 

‘White privilege’: an elite ideology

In the latest expression of its apparent death wish, the BBC put out a clip on social media this week of psychologist and former NBA player John Amaechi waxing lyrical on the subject of white privilege. In it, he gently explained why white privilege is real, and is even enjoyed by the underprivileged whites who generally resent the idea.

This is not the only time recently that the BBC – barracked by accusations of bias and campaigns to defund it – appeared to troll its critics. A podcast clip of two middle-class white women accusing other middle-class white women of being racist ‘Karens’ lit up the BBC complaints page a few weeks back.

But that Amaechi’s little video was put out on BBC Bitesize, the corporation’s homework and revision site, seemed particularly cheeky. That teenagers can now get woke on the same site as they revise for their French GCSE shows how orthodox ideas around identity politics and privilege have become at the BBC – and at elite institutions in general.

There was no debate set up here; the other side of this contentious issue was not given an airing. The theory of white privilege, it seems, is considered by the Beeb to be as uncontroversial as saying that we went to war in 1939 or that Henry VIII had six wives – just another plain fact to be relayed to the young folk.

Across the Atlantic, it fell to billionaire Oprah Winfrey to throw a hand grenade into this particularly tense arena of the culture war this week. On her Apple TV+ show, The Oprah Conversation, she said that even poor white people enjoy white privilege.

‘There are white people who are not as powerful’, the media mogul, net worth $2.6 billion, graciously conceded. ‘But they still, no matter where they are on the rung or ladder of success, they still have their whiteness.’ Right-wing Twitter obviously had a field day, mocking the obvious absurdity of a billionaire lecturing poor people about the privilege they enjoy.

Indeed, one of the consequences of the left’s increasing obsession with divisive identity politics is that it has ceded the language of class to the right. This week the black Tory mayoral candidate for London, Shaun Bailey, said in a speech that he had more in common with a white kid from Dagenham than a black kid from Hampstead, an old classically left-wing formulation about class solidarity.

What some right-wingers are cottoning on to, and exploiting to varying degrees of electoral success (Bailey, bless him, doesn’t stand a chance), is that the left’s recent embrace of wokeness is fundamentally a betrayal of class politics, and that where class politics can unite, wittering on about privilege only divides.

On a practical level, identity politics is just bad politics. Telling working-class white people, a huge chunk of the electorate, that even if they’re struggling to pay the bills and are thousands of pounds in debt they should always remember it could be worse is at best a non-starter. Making statements like ‘you can be homeless and still have white privilege’ would be churlish, to put it lightly, even if they were true.

But the problem with the theory of white privilege is not just that it winds people up. It also fundamentally fails to explain inequalities in society. In the UK, as Christopher Snowdon explained recently, white working-class boys are the poorest performing group in terms of educational attainment. Unless we are expected to believe this is solely down to them squandering their relative privilege, clearly race isn’t everything.

This is not to say racism doesn’t exist, or that racial inequalities aren’t real and serious. But the picture is far more complicated than the narrative of ‘white supremacy’ would have us believe: British workers of Chinese and Indian heritage are the two highest-earning ethnic groups by hourly pay, for instance, and there are big gaps in educational attainment between British African and British Caribbean kids.

For all the disparities in outcomes between different groups, influenced by various cultural, historical and economic factors, what class you were born into remains far more consequential than your skin colour. Even in eras far more racist and discriminatory than our own, radicals recognised that overcoming class domination went hand in hand with overcoming racism – not least given many ethnic minorities were and are disproportionately working class.

Simplistic notions like white privilege, then, obfuscate issues of economic privilege and dim the prospects of forging the coalitions necessary to make life better for all working people. What’s more, among the liberal middle classes, identity politics appears to have rehabilitated a form of class hatred, with the white working-class forever the implied villain of the piece.

After Black Lives Matter protesters toppled the statue of slave trader Edward Colston in Bristol back in June, someone erected a temporary statue near the plinth, depicting a fat, string-vest-wearing pleb sitting in a wheelie bin and staring at his phone screen, on which were the words ‘England for the English’. Today, a white working-class caricature is what many associate with racism.

Regrettably, modern anti-racism has become the means through which class hatred is peddled and inflamed. Indeed, research suggests that ‘white privilege lessons’ have no impact on social liberals’ sympathy towards black people, but they do decrease their sympathy for poor whites, leaving them more likely to think they have ‘failed to take advantage of their racial privilege’.

Left-wing identity politics claims to sit in the anti-racist tradition. But today it plays much the same role that the racist right did in the past. It works to fracture class solidarity by insisting that different sections of the working class are fundamentally antagonistic to one another’s interests.

No wonder the elites love this ‘white privilege’ guff so much. A divided working class is no threat to them.


We need to abolish race

Identity politics has revived racial thinking. It's time to move beyond it.

Thanks to the rise of identity politics and growing political polarisation, the politics of race has come to play an increasingly important role in mainstream public life over the past decade. The issues of race and racism now dominate the national conversation.

However, at the same time there is a growing opposition to the politics of race. Some writers and thinkers, like Kmele Foster or Thomas Chatterton Williams, are seeking to redirect the conversation about race. They don’t want simply to oppose racism, or to critique identity politics. They want to do away with the notion of race altogether. Their rallying cry is, ‘Abolish race!’.

Race abolitionism poses a challenge to both racism and modern forms of ‘anti-racism’. It is predicated on several core claims. First, race abolitionists argue that the social construct of race is based on a taxonomy invented to create and reinforce racial hierarchies. Therefore, to continue to affirm the meaning and existence of race will inevitably perpetuate racial hierarchies.

Secondly, race abolitionists contend that the concept of ‘race’ is scientifically and socially unsupportable. Unlike ‘sex’, which describes the material reality of the divided reproduction function of a given species, the concept of race has no such material, biological basis. That’s why its meaning is constantly shifting. For example, ‘mixed race’ people often consider themselves to be black, and at one time in the not too distant past, all non-white people were considered black. At the same time, several people who we now consider as unquestionably ‘white’ (for example, Irish or Italians) were once regarded as less than totally ‘white’.

And thirdly, race abolitionists argue that the perpetuation of the notion of race is in direct opposition to humanism and universalism. By dividing human beings into broad racialised categories, and institutionalising those categories in the form of quotas, ‘positive discrimination’ schemes, ‘black-only’ spaces and so on, identitarians reify race and racialise social life.

Leftist identitarians are fond of talking of human attributes as ‘social constructs’. However, their use of social-constructionist ideas is less radical than it sounds. In terms of race, they suggest that merely inverting racial hierarchies is sufficient to achieve social justice. So, instead of ‘whiteness’ being constructed to connote purity, power and intelligence, modern activists seek to invert its meaning so that it connotes guilt, debasement and privilege. Likewise, with blackness, activists seek to imbue it with new meanings, from innocence to moral superiority.

These tactics do not challenge racism, however. They preserve it, because they fail to challenge the idea of race itself. This raises several related questions. What does it mean to challenge the idea of race? What does it entail for a person to refuse to accept his or her racial designation? And, ultimately, what does abolishing race mean in practical terms?

Well, first, it means recognising that racial essentialism is a destructive idea, regardless of where it is coming from on the political spectrum. This concept assumes that individuals can be reduced to some racial essence, which in turn determines how they ought to behave and act. Thus, we need to deconstruct the idea of race, to de-essentialise or de-naturalise it, and to render ‘common sense’ understandings of race ‘strange’. In doing so, individuals will become a little more free to be themselves, rather than to live as their racial identity dictates.

Historically, social progress has been won through precisely such challenges to determinism, be it biological or, in this case, cultural. Think, for example, of feminists’ challenge to the idea of what it is to be a woman. Such challenges rest, in part, on what existentialists used to refer to as the ‘transcendental’ elements to our existence – that is to say, our existence precedes our essence. We therefore do not have to be defined by the designations (or indeed identities) imposed upon us. This includes not just the designations of racists, but those of anti-racists, too.

This is not easy. Race presents itself as such an eternal and omnipresent category of identity that many people today cannot imagine themselves existing outside of the racialised categories ascribed to them from birth, which proceed to determine their social relations. Because of this, the abolition of race is a radical challenge to the status quo. It poses the question of what possibilities for human relationships exist beyond the boundary of race. How can we destabilise the ideology and belief system of race?

It is time for us to think imaginatively about what the abolition of race might mean for us as individuals, and for society as a whole. Abolishing race doesn’t mean that we should ignore racism, however. It simply means that we should consistently argue against instilling race with meaning – positive or negative.

Ultimately, the abolition of race confronts us with big questions about who we are. Is the idea of racial difference more important than that of universal humanity? Is ‘race’ and racial essentialism more important than individual freedom? These are the fundamental questions that my new organisation, The Equiano Project, will be exploring. It will provide a vital forum for debate and discussion, in order to bring fresh thinking to bear on race, culture and politics. In doing so, it aims to facilitate conversations about, and to promote, the values of freedom, humanism and universalism.

Those on the identitarian left who currently want to re-essentialise the concept of ‘race’ have no positive vision beyond demanding recognition for past and imagined grievances. This is a dismal vision of our future possibilities as a unified humanity. It can only be challenged when we forge a new collective vision, for which The Equiano Project aims to be a catalyst.


‘Systemic Racism’ or Systemic Rubbish?

The "systemic racism" refrain is a meaningless abstraction.

To concretize a variable, it must be cast in empirical, measurable terms, the opaque “racism” abstraction being one variable (to use statistical nomenclature).

Until you have meticulously applied research methodology to statistically operationalize this inchoate thing called "racism"—systemic or other—it remains nothing but a thought “crime”: Impolite and impolitic thoughts, spoken, written or preached.

Thought crimes are nobody's business in a free society.

The law already mandates that people of all races be treated equally under its protection. The law, then, is not the problem, logic is. In particular, the logical error of reasoning backward.

“Backward reasoning, expounded by mystery author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle through his famous fictional detective, Sherlock Holmes,” writes Dr. Thomas Young, “applies with reasonable certainty when only one plausible explanation for the … evidence exists.”

Systemic racism is most certainly not “the only plausible explanation” for the lag in the fortunes of African-Americans, although, as it stands, systemic racism is inferred solely from one single fact: In aggregate, African-Americans trail behind whites in assorted academic and socio-economic indices and achievements.

This logical error is the central tenet of preferential treatment—affirmative action, and assorted quotas and set-aside edicts and policies.

According to diversity doxology, justice is achieved only when racial and ethnic groups are reflected in academia and in the professions in proportion to their presence in the larger population. On indices of economic well-being, the same egalitarian outcomes are sought.

Equalizing individual and inter-group outcomes is an impossibility considering that it is axiomatically and self-evidently true to say that differences have existed since the dawn of time.

Nevertheless, absent such wealth egalitarianism and proportional representation in the professions, the walking wounded who control America’s cultural discourse have concluded that racism, systemic or other, reigns.

The systemic racism non sequitur is even harder to sustain when considering the Asian minority, a minority that has had its own historical hardships. In professions and academic pursuits where mathematical precocity is a factor, Asians are overrepresented, consistently outperforming whites. If proportional underrepresentation signals oppression, then overrepresentation, likewise, must reflect an unfair advantage.

And if social justice requires that the State and corporate America act as social and economic levelers—then surely fairness demands that all minority groups that are overrepresented in assorted endeavors be similarly kneecapped in the name of equality? Should not such leveling policies be deployed to make the NBA or the 100-meter dash more “representative” of America?

High among Corporate America’s priorities is acting as a race leveler—voluntarily sniffing out deviationists and generally proceeding against and “re-educating” pay-dependent prey. Corporate America’s human resource departments are in the habit of deluging employees with the racial agitprop of illiterate (if degreed) pamphleteers. The woman who wrote White Fragility comes to mind.

In a workplace so shot through with hatred of whites, quite foreseeable is a form of intellectual reparations, where the designated white “oppressors” labor behind the scenes, while the officially “oppressed” manage them and take credit for their intellectual output.



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

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

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

10 August, 2020 

Modern Monetary Theory

MMT is just the old Keynesianism in a new bottle.  Its essential innovation is to say that we do not need to define in advance what level of money creation will be inflationary.  We spend UNTIL we discover when the money issue is becoming inflationary.  Inflation is still the bugbear but we do not need to fear it so much as monitor it.

I and most economic commentators have been very much surprised by the vast leeway in the system. On conventional understandings, the Obama/Trump orgy of currency creation should have bid up demand and resulted in roaring inflation.  It did not.  Hence MMT to explain that.

So without intending it, Obama, Trump and their compliant congresses have revealed a new economic truth.  And it is in a way a conservative truth:  We cannot know in advance how much money-printing will lead to inflation.  We just have to try it and see. We don't stop printing until inflation actually emerges

Horror stories in Weimar Germany, Zimbabwe, Venezuela etc simply arose when their governments refused to heed the inflation signals that told them that they must stop their creation of new currency.

But it remains surprising how many greenbacks can be created without creating excess demand in the economy.  Why is all that new money not bidding up prices?  Currency hoarding both overseas and at home is probably a large part of the answer. We know for instance that there are billions sitting in Chinese banks doing nothing and there are probably many countries and entities stockpiling U.S. dollars worldwide.  On that reading, the USA has much larger room for monetry expansion than most other nations do

And printing during lockdowns is simple common sense. In a lockdown, total private spending is much reduced so the government can reasonably create whatever money is needed to cause a take-up of the available goods and services.  That is what Keynes said about periods of reduced overall demand

Like it or not Stephanie Kelton is an economist whose ideas are making a huge splash in the world of economic thinking. She currently serves as a professor at Stony Brook University but more notably served as the Chief Economist on the Senate Budget Committee as well as the senior economic advisor to the Bernie Sanders presidential campaign. This background should give you some insight into her latest book, titled The Deficit Myth: Modern Monetary Theory and the Birth of the People’s Economy.

Published in 2020, this book may be the flagship literature of Modern Monetary Theory (MMT), as it is not only accessible to the average person but also well-written. Perhaps that is also what makes this book rather dangerous as it combines rigorous theoretical concepts with rather deceptive analogies about how these ideas might work, and a decent amount of progressive political talking points.

It is part textbook, part persuasion, and part manifesto. Despite my disagreements with the content, I must admit that it is a thought-provoking piece of literature that provides insight on what may be a very real economic idea to be reckoned with in the near future.

The Myth Surrounding Deficits

Dr. Kelton starts off her book with a basic point about the way the federal government works. Contrary to the way most politicians talk about the federal budget, there is nothing necessarily wrong with running a deficit and accumulating debt. Economists can debate to what extent debt accumulation and spending are healthy but a basic tenet of MMT is the universal truth that the United States government CAN spend money it doesn’t have. Kelton writes

“What if the federal budget is fundamentally different than your household budget? What if I showed you that the deficit bogeyman isn’t real? What if I could convince you that we can have an economy that puts people and the planet first? That finding the money is not the problem?”

The foundation for MMT is the idea that the federal government is different from a household in that it does not need to raise money before spending it, that it can accumulate debt without any constraints on its fiscal capabilities. The United States government can and has routinely printed money it wishes to spend even though it may not physically possess it, such as the most recent stimulus checks in response to COVID-19.

With a yes or no vote the federal government has spent trillions of dollars that have not been generated from tax revenue or borrowing money. This is possible because the government is a money supplier. It has a monopoly on currency production and can print as much money as it desires.

Whether or not it should spend more than it brings in with taxes is another debate entirely. The core foundation of MMT is the fact that a sovereign currency issuer like the United States, Japan, or Australia can continue to print money and therefore never run out. Under this logic, budget deficits are simply imaginary constraints; the real constraints to spending lie elsewhere.

Dealing With Inflation

This shift in understanding as described by Kelton is that

“MMT clarifies what is economically possible and thus shifts the terrain of policy debates that get hamstrung over questions of financial feasibility.”

In a way, governments around the world essentially practice MMT in a limited capacity as they print the money they don’t have to use in complicated monetary maneuvers. However, Kelton and MMT advocates believe that we should take this way of thinking to its limits. She extols the possibility of building new infrastructure, improving healthcare, and essentially funding a whole slew of projects that would otherwise be impossible without excessive taxation.

Essentially we can have our cake and eat it too, getting more government services without higher taxes. Obviously one of the main concerns with this idea is that inflation would skyrocket if we simply pumped trillions of dollars into the economy. If inflation gets out of control, the country will follow in the steps of Weimar Germany, Venezuela, and Zimbabwe, dooming us to economic collapse. Kelton addresses this concern by clarifying

“Do I believe the solution to all our problems is to simply spend more money? No, of course not. Just because there are no financial constraints on the federal budget doesn’t mean there aren’t real limits to what the government can (and should) do. Every economy has its own internal speed limit, regulated by the availability of real productive resources.”

Powerful economies like the United States can afford to print and spend more money than a country like Haiti. MMT doesn’t necessarily posit that poor countries can print themselves to prosperity, more so that all countries with sovereignty over their currency can increase their potential by printing more money. Policymakers also need to be cognizant of what she refers to as “slack” in the economy which would be underutilized resources and opportunities. If there is enough “slack” in the economy, printing money will not result in inflation as productivity would increase with the money supply.

The main problem with this premise, however, is trusting politicians and bureaucrats to make these incredibly sophisticated decisions. How could one know how much capital exists in the economy and what the correct amount of money to print in proportion to economic growth will be? This is a knowledge problem that needs to be reckoned with before we embark on this highly theoretical trip to the monetary unknown.

The Sovereignty of Currency

Kelton reminds us that the idea of balanced budgets and deficit constraints may have been important in the past when we were on the gold standard but now that we have moved into the world of fiat currency these restrictions no longer apply. This is again true; however, she believes we should take the idea to its logical extreme.

To explain the importance of monetary sovereignty she explains that

“In addition to the United States, countries like the United Kingdom, Japan, Canada, and Australia enjoy a high degree of monetary sovereignty… Some nations have weakened their monetary sovereignty, either by pegging their exchange rates (e.g. Bermuda, Venezuela, Niger), abandonment of their national currencies (e.g., all nineteen countries in the Eurozone, Ecuador, Panama), or by borrowing heavily in US dollars or other foreign currencies (e.g. Ukraine, Argentina, Turkey, Brazil). Doing any of these things compromises a nation’s monetary sovereignty and diminishes policy flexibility.”

By diminishing their monetary sovereignty, these countries have lost their capacity to print money in order to execute policies like stimulus spending during economic downturns and financing more government programs.

She adds that

“Most developing countries are at the weaker end of the sovereignty spectrum…That’s because most poorer developing nations rely on imports to meet vital social needs.”

Although this is certainly correct, whether or not this is the reason why some countries are poor or whether or not increased government spending will be more helpful in developing countries is another debate to be had. Whether or not that is a good thing would depend on whether one sees government intervention as the source of prosperity rather than the private sector. Does the government have a significant role to play in directing the economy like the Soviet Union or should it simply guarantee life, liberty, and property so that its enterprising citizens are free to prosper in a way they choose?

Lastly, if countries with strong currencies decide to do as Kelton says and start printing trillions of dollars to finance projects even if it’s proportional to inflation what message will that send to users of the currency? An article in Forbes warns that

“These numbers are so large that they no longer have any meaning; they are simply abstractions,”

“Pointing to warnings made by former Fed chairman Paul Volcker that “it is a governmental responsibility to maintain the value of the currency they issue. And when they fail to do that, it is something that undermines an essential trust in government.”

“After you throw a few trillion dollars around, people start to believe that it’s all a big joke.”

Perhaps the United States can get away with a COVID-19 stimulus bill and maybe we can afford to finance a round of infrastructure improvements by printing a few trillion dollars. But what about the next round of repairs, the next crisis, the next pressing issue our government is called upon to address? Can we just keep printing more money and is this sustainable? These are some of the ultimate questions that proponents of MMT must address if this theory is ever to be viewed as sustainable.

The Role of Taxes

One of the immediate questions one may have when presented with a monetary system that proposes to pay for everything with the printing press, and that budgets are now irrelevant, is why should we keep paying taxes?

Kelton is very upfront with her view of taxation, which isn’t to raise funds for programs as the government is already the sole provider of currency. It is as she writes,

“To get the population to do all that work, the government imposes taxes, fees, fines, or other obligations. The tax is there to create a demand for the government’s currency. Before anyone can pay the tax someone has to do the work to earn the currency.”

Kelton contends that money was first distributed by the government. In order to make it worth something, the government imposed taxes so that people could exchange them for government services and also work to earn the government’s money. Government is therefore responsible for creating the medium of exchange that society uses to conduct trade and also incentivizing people to conduct useful activity.

According to Kelton taxes serve four essential purposes:

To incentivize work by creating demand and scarcity for money
To manage inflation by taking money out of the economy
To redistribute income
To discourage negative activity like smoking and carbon emissions

In this view, taxes do not exist to support the operations of the state through a democratic process agreed upon by the electorate, but to simply exercise the levers of power.

The conventional theory of money and taxes is that money arose as a convenient medium of exchange amongst individuals in the marketplace desiring a universal system of value exchange. That productive activity exists regardless of government and taxation is a process in which the government either forcefully or consensually takes from the population to fund generally agreed upon public services such as raising a military.

These are two fundamentally contrasting views of the role of the state; one positing that it is the central component that enables civilized life and the other holding that it is an entity that is supported by the fruits of a civilized society and is, therefore, a humble servant.

Some Thoughts on MMT

Aside from the concerns with the monetary aspects of MMT such as controlling inflation, maintaining confidence in our currency, and embarking on an unprecedented experiment in monetary theory, I am most concerned with the political economy surrounding MMT.

Kelton contends that such policies will create a “people’s economy” where politicians and not the Federal Reserve will make monetary decisions. Where we will not have to abide by the traditional constraints created by budgets, interest rates, and so on. On this topic, AIER has written extensively on why we should not politicize the Federal Reserve and monetary policy more generally.

Kelton also makes the case for a federal jobs guarantee financed almost entirely by printed money. She contends that such a program would help alleviate job disruption brought about by technological advancement, recessions, and industry disruptions brought about by free trade. This will cost an obscene amount of money combined with the other promises she makes to fix infrastructure, fund Social Security, and provide free college, fund a Green New Deal, and so on.

How can we know this will fit within the appropriate spending to economic growth ratio that she keeps reminding us is the real consideration we should be making? Furthermore, a federal jobs guarantee alongside all the other government programs she advocates for will crowd out productivity from the private sector. Large government programs such as a jobs guarantee will not only artificially divert labor and capital from productive sectors, but it will also drive up inflation when countless individuals are being given checks for government jobs that may not be adding any value to the economy.

If the country embraced MMT, there would be massive concerns with cronyism as politicians would be unleashed to give virtually as much money to their friends as possible. There will be a populist tug of war over the printing press as the different political interests attempt to supercharge their favorite spending habits. The electorate, emboldened by the prospect of simply enriching itself with the printing press will trap politicians in a position where the one who promises to print the most money wins. We don’t need to look any further than the current welfare state to see this in action. If this happens then the careful management of the money supply and inflation which Kelton holds as the main concern with making MMT work will be broken in short order.

Finally, there is a question about the very role of government. Kelton contends that MMT will make it more democratic. I believe that unchaining the state from the constraints of budgets and taxation will make it more despotic. Whatever the government can give, it can also take. MMT seems to favor one that can give endlessly and take everything.

When we look to the state, do we see a deity to kneel before? Or do we see a government instituted among men, deriving its just powers from the consent of the governed? A government that will live and serve within the means that which we democratically assign to it.

Kelton may be right that the old mechanisms of the gold standard, balanced budgets, and debt may be instruments of the past in the face of MMT and fiat currency. However, they also provide a service that goes beyond money and finance. That is maintaining a government that is prudent, humble, and sustainable.


Stephanie Kelton’s book is well-written and serves as an accessible insight into the world of Modern Monetary Theory. Although I have many objections, I found it a great read nonetheless, especially knowing that this is a field of economic thought that may be much more relevant in the near future. There are parts of the book that are essential pieces of economic knowledge that define the modern state, some that are questionable premises, and some that are blatant political talking points.

As a contribution to economic thought, I find it to be rather questionable. It also features circular logic, as well as bait-and-switch style arguments. As an accessible insight into an increasingly relevant monetary theory and the world of public finance, I believe the book does just that.


Portland Mayor Finally Admits Violent Riots Aren't the Same as 'Peaceful Protests,' After 68 Nights

On Thursday, after the 68th consecutive night of violent riots in Portland, Mayor Ted Wheeler (D) finally urged activists who seriously desire police reform not to join the murderous and destructive antifa mob wreaking havoc in his city. Better late than never? While Wheeler finally issued a full-throated condemnation of the violence, he also warned rioters that they are “creating the B-roll film” for the campaign to reelect President Donald Trump.

Wheeler’s remarks on Thursday marked a clear departure from his previous tactic of blaming all the violence on the president. After Gov. Kate Brown (D) agreed to dispatch state police to aid in the defense of the federal courthouse, the surplus federal law enforcement officers Wheeler and other Democrats had demonized left the area, leaving Wheeler no scapegoat to blame for the violence.

“Last night, 200 to 300 people went to East Precinct intent on violence. The purpose was to attack the East Precinct facility and the people therein,” the mayor said. He noted that “exits were blocked, they were barricaded shut,” and ” accelerants were set and used to grow fires.”

“The attack was immediate, it was intentional, and it was planned. It was intended to cause serious injury or death, and it very well could have,” Wheeler added. He noted that the police used tear gas, which “was authorized by every agency involved.”

“When you commit arson with an accelerant, in an attempt to burn down a building that is occupied by people that you have intentionally trapped inside, you are not demonstrating. You are attempting to commit murder,” the mayor insisted. “And by the way, this building is in a residential neighborhood.”

“I believe that city staff could have died last night,” Wheeler added. “This is not peaceful protest. This is not advocacy to advance reforms or transform any system.”


Yes, this is exactly the message that conservative journalists have been repeating until we are blue in the face. When lawless antifa rioters throw Molotov cocktails, set fires with accelerants, throw commercial-grade fireworks, and use commercial-grade lasers to blind federal officers for days, they are not engaging in peaceful protest.

Yet for nearly 70 days, left-leaning journalists and Democratic politicians have excused this violence as if it were a “myth,” even when outlets like The Post Millennial and PJ Media have repeatedly shared real footage from the riots. Perhaps Mayor Wheeler has finally given them permission to acknowledge that these “peaceful protests” have devolved into violent riots.

Not everyone seems to have gotten the memo. When the Pacific Northwest Youth Liberation Front announced another round of riots on Thursday and when Portland Police answered that this call for violence “will not go unanswered,” Portland Mercury editor Alex Zielinski tweeted, “If anyone is inciting violence tonight, it’s PPB.”

If you’re a peaceful protester, don’t go to the riots!
Whether or not Wheeler’s newfound acknowledgment of the reality of violence helps, he did make a valiant attempt to convince Portlanders not to join the violent riots.

“If you are a non-violent demonstrator, and you don’t want to be part of intentional violence, please stay away from these areas. Our community must say that this violence is not Portland, that these actions do not reflect our values, and these crimes are distracting from reform, not advancing it,” he said. “And they’re keeping our police officers from responding to historic levels of violence in our community.”

NOW he tells them! If only Portlanders had known the “peaceful protests” would devolve into violent riots every night after 11 p.m. or midnight. Maybe they wouldn’t have gone…

Just how naive does Ted Wheeler think his audience is?

He repeated this advice later on in the press conference.

“If you do not view yourself as wanting to be associated with or be part of the criminal activity that we saw last night, I would ask you not to show up. And if you do show up, say something,” the mayor urged Portlanders. “To my eye, it looked like there were a couple of hundred people just standing around, saying nothing, not intervening, and in some cases even cheering those activities on.”

“If you are a non-violent demonstrator and you are demonstrating for racial justice and equity in police reform, you don’t want to be part of this. You don’t want to show up,” Wheeler advised.

Then the mayor had to get in his jab at President Trump. As a final thought, he said, “Don’t think for a moment, if you are participating in this activity, that you are not being a prop for the reelection campaign of Donald Trump, because you absolutely are.”

“You are creating the B-roll film that will be used nationally to help Donald Trump in this campaign. You don’t want to be part of that, then don’t show up,” Wheeler urged.

He did not explain why, exactly, footage of the riots would help President Trump’s reelection campaign. Americans do not like to see violent antifa rioters storming a police precinct, attempting to set it on fire. They do not like to see violence on the streets of American cities.

Footage of the riots could only be “B-roll” for the Trump campaign if the party opposing the president had attempted to cover up or ignore 68 nights of violent riots inspired by far-left Marxist propaganda — which is working its way into the Democratic platform. Footage of the riots could only be politically viable if — get this — the president had called for law and order and offered to send extra federal law enforcement to help cities that are overrun with antifa rioters, and the Democratic mayors of those cities had refused him.

Perhaps the footage would be particularly powerful if, in a certain city, rioters had carried out violent attacks for nearly 70 nights while the city’s mayor told police not to engage, demonized the federal law enforcement whose lives the rioters threatened, and actually joined the rioters. Oh, it might also be effective if the mayor in question — not naming any names — had claimed that there was no justification for tear gas even though rioters were setting off explosives right behind him.

Oh, all of that happened? Wait, it happened in Portland? No wonder Ted Wheeler is terrified of footage getting out there.

Here’s the kicker: While all of this was happening, presumptive Democratic nominee Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. attacked Trump, claiming the president was attacking “peaceful protesters.” Yes, that footage does belong in campaign ads. Americans need to know what’s really been going on Portland, and it seems Ted Wheeler is only now realizing just how much trouble he’s in.


AG Barr suports the police in person

We have the right guy at the Department of Justice. Period. William Barr could possibly be one of the best, if not the best, cabinet picks during his tenure in the White House. The man is calm, collected, professional, and easily shreds any liberal nonsense hurled his way. He’s obviously in support of our police who are under assault by far-left lawmakers across the country who are trying to defund their departments. The rioting in some of the most liberal bastions of the country has taken a wild turn, with left-wing clowns in Portland and Seattle trying to systematically destroy the city.

It’s no longer about George Floyd. It’s about Marxism. It’s quite clear that the BLM movement was a vehicle for the far left to latch onto like a barnacle to mobilize for their agenda items. It got so bad that federal agents had to be deployed to be problematic areas, which caused local leaders, who did nothing to bring calm to the situation, to go apoplectic. Too bad, kids. The federal government has every right to step in and enforce law and order, and to protect federal property. In Portland, they tried to burn down the federal courthouse there. If you people didn’t quasi-endorse leftist militias seizing portions of the city, as they did in Seattle, then maybe federal agents wouldn’t be needed. Only a total idiot would buy that this deployment was a prelude to a fascist takeover, or Trump laying the groundwork to steal the 2020 election, or an occupation.

The tinfoil hat nonsense about Operation Legend initiated by the DOJ has been beyond insane. So, with Democrats, liberals, and far-left wingnuts spitting on police, with the latter assaulting, shooting, and running them over in cities across the country during the Floyd riots, a small gathering of folks in Virginia supporting law enforcement caught the eye of AG Barr, who asked his FBI detail to make a quick pit stop so that he could personally thank these people.

His spokesperson at DOJ, Kerry Kupec tweeted a video of the event.

“This is awesome,” said one person as the attorney general ventured into the small, but passionate group of “Back the Blue” supporters.

Barr also thanked some of them for their kind words regarding his recent testimony before the House Judiciary Committee in which Trump-deranged Democrats spent hours berating him and refusing to let him speak, despite the fact that he was invited to do so in this setting. It was a de facto 2020 campaign rally, where Democrats could put on a show. Barr was still cool as a cucumber. And there was a reason why Democrats didn’t allow him to speak: he would have eviscerated their arguments, as he’s done in the past.

The DOJ was in the lonely position of neutral before Barr was confirmed. Now, he’s righting the ship. It’s the little things that have big impacts. Barr’s actions and his no-nonsense attitude towards enforcing our laws and getting to the bottom of the Trump-Russia fiasco already should have assured us that he’s the right guy for the job there. This act of gratitude towards those who support our police is just another checkmark in the positive column.


Australia: Incompetent guards hired for hotel quarantine in an attempt at social inclusion

Minorities hired regardless of their fitness for the job.  The result was a disastrous failure, with the virus being spread instead of contained

A senior Department of Jobs official has been shifted from their role as evidence mounts that the decision to use private security guards at Melbourne’s quarantine hotels was partly driven by a well-meaning attempt to provide jobs under "social inclusion" policies.

A leaked email from another public servant, the department's deputy secretary for inclusion, also paints a picture of how rushed the implementation was, describing "heroic efforts" over a weekend in late March as bureaucrats became "expert in the delivery of hotel concierge services".

Departmental sources insisted on Saturday that the official’s secondment to another senior job creation role was not a reflection on their performance in contracting private security firms for hotel quarantine.

The revelations will increase pressure on the Andrews government over whether it put too much emphasis on finding jobs for marginalised Victorians without ensuring that those guarding hotel guests were trained in infection control and supervised by authorised officers.

A spokesman for the Victorian Department of Jobs denied that job creation was the main driver: "Supporting an effective quarantine program was the department’s motivation, not job creation.”

Infection outbreaks among security guards at two quarantine hotels in Melbourne are widely believed to be responsible for the state's second devastating wave of coronavirus, which has killed dozens of people and put hundreds of thousands out of work.

The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald can now reveal that officials in the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions employment division and its international trade agency, Global Victoria, were responsible for engaging private security firms for hotel quarantine on the weekend of March 28 and 29. They also had an ongoing role overseeing the quarantine operation.

The task of contracting the security firms was given to the department’s executive director of employment, whom The Age and Herald have chosen not to name. The official has since been replaced by two acting directors on the latest version of the department's organisation chart. The officer has retained their senior role at the department.

Media reports from 2013 reveal the official had professional dealings with the Sydney-based security company given much of the hotel quarantine work, Unified Security, in their previous role as general manager of work and learning at the Brotherhood of St Laurence.

The charity and Unified established a partnership in 2012 to provide security training and jobs for marginalised people. The official also did some work with Unified in 2019 in finding a small number of positions under a Jobs Victoria project.

As an Indigenous-owned company, Unified satisfies the government’s criteria for contracts under its social inclusion procurement policy. It won the security contract for Metro Trains last year and specifically referred to its Brotherhood of St Laurence partnership in briefing documents supplied to government.

A Monday March 30 email written by the department's deputy secretary for inclusion, David Clements, refers to the rush to get arrangements in place to handle returning travellers over the weekend. Mandatory 14-day quarantines had been authorised the previous Friday by national cabinet.

"I have had a crazy weekend, getting roped in to helping with arrangements for 'standing up' the hotels accommodating passengers returning from overseas for their 14 days of quarantine," Mr Clements wrote in the email.

"Suffice to say there have been some heroic efforts from numerous of your colleagues across DJPR to make this happen – including from [the executive director of employment] who is now an expert on contracting hotel security; the Global Victoria team who are now expert in the delivery of hotel concierge services."

The revelation of Global Victoria’s role in hotel quarantine raises further questions for the government because the agency has no experience in security or public health measures. Global Victoria manages Victoria’s trade relationships and international marketing.

The hotel quarantine inquiry will examine the decision-making process that led to the hiring of security firms - and questions will be asked about who decided the Department of Jobs be given responsibility for contracting security providers and overseeing the rollout.

Premier Daniel Andrews on Thursday said he was unable to explain how the decision to rely on private security guards was made and Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said on Friday he had found out about "rumours and reporting around deficiencies with the workforce ... when I read it in the newspapers".

The rushed procurement process to find guards for hotel quarantine resulting in contracts being awarded to three security companies: Wilson, MSS and Unified.

The appointment of Unified proved controversial because, unlike Wilson and MSS, it was not on the government’s preferred panel of security suppliers. Despite this, Unified ended up doing the bulk of the hotel quarantine work. All three companies had to rely on sub-contractors to supply their guards – some of whom were recruited via WhatsApp messages – at short notice.

In early April, well before COVID-19 began crippling Victoria, Mr Andrews and Jobs Coordination Minister Martin Pakula released a media statement highlighting the government’s role in creating jobs for 1300 Victorians whose employment prospects had worsened due to the global pandemic.

The press release specifically referred to 450 jobs being created in the hotel quarantine program “including transport operations, security and cleaning”. International students and temporary migrants were key targets under the jobs program.

Private security companies, including Unified, were also used in NSW hotel quarantine, but private security guards in Sydney were overseen by police or Border Force officials in each hotel. In Victoria, the government decided against using police or defence force personnel, and there remains considerable confusion in public service ranks and security companies about which department had ultimate responsibility.

The Age and Herald have previously revealed leaked emails in which officials from the Department of Jobs requested Emergency Management Victoria and the Department of Health and Human Services get police involved in hotel quarantine in late March amid doubts about the preparedness of private security.

Some senior police at that time were privately frustrated Victoria has not been declared a state of disaster by Mr Andrews.

Such a declaration would have empowered police as the state’s authorised officers to lead crucial aspects of the pandemic response instead of those powers remaining with health department officials under the less serious state of emergency provisions.

Mr Andrews declared a state of disaster recently when Melbourne was moved onto stage four restrictions.

The inquiry into hotel quarantine led by former state coroner Jennifer Coate will begin public hearings later this month. Ms Coate will deliver her report in November.



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

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

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

9 August, 2020

Prince Harry accuses social media of stoking a 'crisis of hate'

The Prince is right to be disturbed by hate.  One hopes that his opposition to it extends to the vast outpourting of Leftist hate directed towards President Trump and other conservatives

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have spent the last month contacting the leaders of major corporations, lobbying them to withdraw advertising spending from "lawless" social media companies such as Facebook.

Prince Harry revealed that he and his wife have set their sights on “remodelling the architecture” of social media, warning that sweeping change is needed to protect mental health and stop the spread of misinformation.

In a 1,400-word opinion piece for US business magazine Fast Company, he said the cost of using social media use was “very high”, with personal data traded for profit in a “relatively lawless space”.

He questioned what such susceptibility to “the coercive forces in digital spaces” would mean for our children, adding: “As a father, this is especially concerning to me.”

The issue will become one of the main focuses of the couple’s longer term work through their non-profit organisation, Archewell.

The article, for which the Duke was not paid, is considered an introduction to the couple’s mindset as they plough their own furrow in Los Angeles, the Telegraph understands.

The decision to focus on online behaviour was inspired in part by the work they have both undertaken in recent years on mental health and more recently by the civil and racial justice campaigns in the wake of the death of George Floyd.

In a speech last month, the Duchess urged teen girls and young women to drown out sometimes "painfully loud" negative online chatter with positivity.

The Duke warned in his article that online communities should be "defined more by compassion than hate; by truth instead of misinformation; by equity and inclusiveness instead of injustice and fearmongering; by free, rather than weaponised, speech."

He wrote: “A little over four weeks ago, my wife and I started calling business leaders, heads of major corporations, and chief marketing officers at brands and organisations we all use in our daily lives.

“Our message was clear: The digital landscape is unwell and companies like yours have the chance to reconsider your role in funding and supporting online platforms that have contributed to, stoked, and created the conditions for a crisis of hate, a crisis of health, and a crisis of truth.”

The pair stepped down from royal duties earlier this year
The pair stepped down from royal duties earlier this year CREDIT: AFP
He called for meaningful digital reform, adding: “We’ve spoken with leaders across the racial justice movement, experts in humane tech, and advocates of mental health. And the collective opinion is abundantly clear: We do not have the luxury of time.”

The intervention coincided with the launch of the US-based Stop Hate for Profit campaign, which is putting mounting pressure on Facebook to tackle hate speech on its platform. In recent weeks, more than 1,000 companies, including adidas, Ford and Unilever, have withdrawn their advertising spend as a result.

Although the Sussexes support the campaign, their own work on the issue will be independent.

The Duke said that while social media was a seemingly free resource, ostensibly used for connecting, sharing and organising, the “price we’re all paying is much higher than it appears.”

“Every time you click they learn more about you,” he wrote. “Our information, private data, and unknown habits are traded on for advertising space and dollars.

“Whereas normally we’re the consumer buying a product, in this ever-changing digital world, we are the product.”

He said that he and his wife had “felt it necessary” to speak out about the rise of what he called an “unchecked and divisive attention economy” which could even drive people towards radicalism and extremism.

“This remodeling must include industry leaders from all areas drawing a line in the sand against unacceptable online practices as well as being active participants in the process of establishing new standards for our online world," he added.

In 2018, the Duke of Cambridge criticised technology giants, warning they were failing to protect children from the hate and bile of social media and out of their depth in tackling the negative side of their platforms.


The new face of race hate: Marching through London they claimed to be fighting bigotry - but their leader revels in anti-Semitic abuse

A group of protesters dressed in black military-style uniforms march in tight formation through the streets of London.

They are led by strapping men who bellow orders such as 'Atten-hut!' and 'Right face!' and look like a highly trained group of soldiers out on parade.

Some have dark berets, gloves and knee-high leather boots. A few carry walkie-talkies. At least one is wearing an IRA- style balaclava.

In some ways the scene appears to echo the 1930s, when Oswald Mosley's 'Blackshirts' took their ugly brand of fascism to working-class neighbourhoods of our capital city. But this was Brixton, last Saturday.

The occasion was a march for African Emancipation Day, held on the first day of August each year to mark both the anniversary of the date in 1834 when the Abolition of Slavery Act came into force, and to campaign for Britain to pay reparations for its role in the transatlantic slave trade.

The protesters in their stab vests and paramilitary-style fatigues belonged to a strange new organisation that calls itself the Forever Family Force.

Formed last month, to pursue what its social media feed has described as 'the battle against racism, inequality and injustice', it seems to have been conceived as a sort of British version of the Black Panthers, the radical far-Left protest group which wore similar garb as it campaigned against police brutality in 1960s America.

In keeping with this tradition, Forever Family has already sparked controversy.

To critics, the group appears to be importing an inflammatory brand of American-style identity politics — given oxygen by the Black Lives Matter movement — in which people of colour are encouraged to believe that society is so intrinsically racist, their only hope is to mount an organised resistance against the ruling class.

Those who see them as divisive and intimidating include Nigel Farage, who circulated images of last Saturday's protest on Twitter, saying: 'Terrifying scenes in Brixton today. A paramilitary-style force marching in the streets. This is what the BLM movement wanted from the start and it will divide our society like never before.'

Supporters, for their part, point out that the Brixton event was largely peaceful, with just three arrests, and argue that Forever Family is a harmless, if somewhat eccentric, group of well-meaning activists who enjoy dressing up.

This camp includes Jonathan Bartley, co-leader of the Green Party, who responded to Farage by declaring: 'You are just trying to create division. But these people in Brixton today know that love and justice will conquer the fear and hate you peddle. Hope is what people need right now and they are showing the pathway towards it.'

So, what is the truth? Well, here is where it starts to get interesting.

Despite Mr Bartley's remark about 'love and justice', I can reveal that Forever Family is led by a highly controversial musician who has recently used social media to voice vile slurs against other minority groups.

Among other things, he has shared deeply anti-transgender 'memes', circulated bizarre anti-vaccination conspiracy theories and suggested that Bill Gates has killed tens of thousands of children in Third World countries and is somehow responsible for the coronavirus pandemic.

Forever Family's leader has also made a series of anti-Semitic remarks blaming Jews for slavery.

In a series of Instagram posts this month, he described the Jewish community's alleged role in the slave trade as 'the original holocaust', criticised 'devils' who campaigned against Left-wing anti-Semitism on social media, and advanced a further selection of conspiracy theories claiming that Jews 'own' the banking system via what he calls the 'Rothschild bloodline'.

It is a wholly revolting world-view for anyone to hold, especially the leader of a group that purports to campaign against racism.

Indeed, some might argue that the real agenda of this militaristic protest group is not so far removed from that of the Black Panthers, the leaders of whose unofficial successors have denied the Holocaust and called Jews 'hook-nosed' impostors and 'bloodsuckers of the poor' who profiteer from the black community.

Perhaps that explains why, despite Forever Family's highprofile protests, its founder appears to have taken extensive steps to keep his identity secret.

On paper, the organisation is opaque. Its website consists of an image of a clenched fist, along with links to Twitter and Instagram accounts that have been set to 'private', so they can be read only by approved users.

A Facebook page, which can also be accessed from the website, allows viewers to watch two short videos which claim the organisation exists to 'mobilise, organise and centralise community initiatives to empower and support organisations with similar objectives' and say it is 'united in building a self-sufficient and stable community'.

What these vague mission statements mean, and how the group proposes to actually achieve its aims, are unclear.

Neither its social media accounts nor its website contain any information about who is behind it.

The only supporter who has made his identity publicly known is a musician called Mega — not the leader of the group referred to above — who performs with the hip-hop collective So Solid Crew. He used Twitter to declare that he took part in last Saturday's protest, boasting: 'We locked down Brixton today.'

Ironically, given this secretive modus operandi, the films circulated by Forever Family also claim that its values are 'integrity, transparency and accountability'.

One thing Forever Family is keen to get its hands on, though, is money. And that is what allows us to trace its founder: several of its social media pages carry links to a PayPal site where supporters can donate to the cause.

Contributions are then, according to PayPal, passed to a company called Forever Family Limited, which was incorporated on June 20 and operates out of a service address in Hoxton, East London.

Companies House records show the firm's secretary is a 27-year-old woman from Wandsworth, South London, called Rachelle Emanuel. The only director — and the group's leader and founder — is a 28-year-old resident of Ilford, East London, called Khari McKenzie.

Neither has responded to a request for comment.

Little is known about Ms Emanuel. However, McKenzie, who is listed as having 'significant control' over Forever Family, is a rap artist who performs under the stage name Raspect.

He appears to have become politically active in 2011 after the police shooting of Mark Duggan, a 29-year-old gang member whose death sparked the riots in London and elsewhere that year.

In more recent years, McKenzie has been active in a community group called 'GANG', whose supporters arrive at incidents of gang violence wearing stab vests and using loudhailers to encourage locals onto the streets to 'reclaim the space'.

In early 2018, McKenzie made a series of appearances on Victoria Derbyshire's BBC chat show to discuss race relations following the death of Edson Da Costa, a 25-year-old from East London who died after swallowing plastic bags of heroin and crack cocaine when his car was stopped by the police.

In one bizarre interview with Derbyshire that year, he urged viewers not to call the police to incidents of crime, saying: 'Don't call 999, call the g-line,' an apparent reference to GANG's contact number. At around the same time, he was photographed shaking hands with London mayor Sadiq Khan at City Hall.

More recently, McKenzie filmed himself being, as he put it, 'rudely interrupted, harassed and threatened' by police officers, who asked why he appeared to be breaking lockdown rules to socialise with a group of acquaintances in a park at the height of the Covid epidemic.

And in early June, soon after the killing of George Floyd in the U.S., he began taking photographs of himself in military clothes at Black Lives Matter protests in London.

In more recent times, McKenzie's public statements — particularly since Forever Family came into being — have become more volatile, not to mention offensive.

Last year, for example, he used Instagram to share a transphobic joke suggesting that people who identify as female but are born male are likely to be sex offenders.

'A man followed a young girl into Asda toilets in London, saying he identifies as a woman,' it read. 'The man's teeth were knocked out by the girl's father, who said he identifies as the tooth fairy.'

In spring this year, he uploaded several posts to Instagram making various claims about Bill Gates, suggesting that the Microsoft founder is somehow exploiting the Covid crisis to try to force mandatory vaccinations on the world.

This odd conspiracy theory — doing the rounds in corners of the internet popular with the anti-vaccination movement — reflects the senseless belief that Mr Gates has established that vaccines will kill people who take them, and is therefore endorsing them as part of a plot to reduce the global population.

'The same guy who says we need to depopulate suddenly wants to save everyone with his vaccines,' read one such post by McKenzie.

Another claimed, wrongly, that 48,000 children in India had been 'paralysed by Bill Gates's polio vaccine'. A third post called him a 'documented thief' who 'owns vaccine companies' and 'visited [Jeffrey] Epstein's pedo [sic] island countless times'.

In fact, there is no evidence that Mr Gates is a criminal, nor that he ever visited Mr Epstein's private island (although he did meet him and once travelled on his private jet).

McKenzie isn't just posting paranoid content on Instagram, however. He also uploads blatantly anti-Semitic content.

In June, he began using the network to attack the Jewish community, sharing a false conspiracy theory that the restraining technique of kneeling on the neck, as used by the police officer who killed George Floyd in Minneapolis in May, had been learnt during secret seminars with Israeli security forces.

'Research who funded the transatlantic slave trade biggest holocaust and crime against humanity, with no reparations,' he declared in one Instagram post, illustrated with images of the Israeli Defence Force. 'Look who is behind training police in the USA and the UK to put there [sic] legs on our necks.'

Similar sentiments were voiced, at around the same time, by the Corbynite actress Maxine Peake, leading to the sacking of Shadow Cabinet minister Rebecca Long-Bailey, who described her as 'a diamond'. Peake later apologised.

Last week, McKenzie continued in this questionable vein by using Instagram to share a video of himself giving a rambling speech about Zionism.

'Every Zionist is an Islamophobe,' he said. 'It don't make me anti-Semitic if I don't agree with the oppression in Palestine. That's foolishness, yeah.

So when we're talking about Zionists, and even talking about if I don't agree with the people that run the banks, yeah, and by them running the banks the rich get richer and the poor get poorer, if I don't agree with that, that don't make me anti-no one. I'm just anti-oppression.

'If I look in my history book and see there were people with Zionist blood that were heavily involved in the transatlantic slave trade, me pointing that out doesn't make me anti-Semitic...'

The next day, McKenzie attacked the 'devils' who had successfully persuaded Instagram, YouTube and Twitter to close the accounts of a rap artist called Wiley, who had made a series of highly anti-Semitic attacks on the Jewish community.

As well as circulating a petition calling for Wiley's reinstatement, his posts attacking the move carried a series of anti-Semitic hashtags, including #Rothschildbloodline and #whoownsthebanks, advancing the Nazi-era slur that Jews are in control of all international finance.

In response to those posts, a spokesman for the Campaign Against Anti-Semitism tells me: 'There is no justification for using anti-Semitic tropes to commemorate the horrors of slavery or protest [against] ongoing racism in society today.

'Forever Family should appreciate that, for ordinary decent people, and the Jewish community in particular, seeing a paramilitary [group] wearing black shirts and marching through the streets of London led by a man who rails against 'Zionist bloodlines' is frighteningly reminiscent of humanity's darkest hour and does nothing to further the noble cause of fighting racism. Prejudice cannot be beaten by more prejudice.'

To put things more bluntly, the group that dressed up in uniform to 'reclaim' the streets of Brixton a week ago — and was so publicly endorsed by the co-leader of the Green Party — has rather too much in common with those fascist blackshirts who paraded through London in similar garb more than 80 years ago.


Make America Normal Again

Conservatives deal with facts and reach conclusions; liberals have conclusions and sell them as facts

For four years, the left has up-ended everything that was once considered normal. An overwhelming Trump (and Republican) victory can bring normal back.

Over the past few days, when reading articles, conversing with friends, listening to podcasts, or just contemplating life, one word rings in my brain like a tocsin: “Normal.”

It’s not a very inspiring or impressive word. Like “nice,” it’s often one of those words you use when you want to damn something with faint praise. If you’re a kid in high school, you don’t want your prom date to be reduced to the words “nice” and “normal.” You want that date to be dazzling, gorgeous, popular, fun, cool, or whatever other superlatives we heap upon those things or people we desire.

But there’s a lot to be said for things that are nice and even more to be said for things that are “normal.”

One hundred years ago, there was another presidential election. It pitted Warren G. Harding, the Republican, against James M. Cox, the Democrat. Harding won with 60.3% of the electoral college votes. Cox got the South (except for Tennessee), but Harding won every other state. It was a decisive victory.

Harding’s winning slogan was “A return to normalcy.” That was what Americans desperately craved.

Although American participation in World War I was short compared to England’s and the Continental powers, that year had exposed a generation of American men to the incredible brutality of modern trench warfare. After only a year at the front, 116,516 men didn’t make it home. Those who did come home were changed both by the war experience itself and by their exposure to the wider world.

Another profoundly disruptive event was the Spanish Influenza. It started working its way through the troops the moment they were mobilized to military camps across America and then followed them to Europe. Meanwhile, it worked its way across the home front. At a guess, the flu may have killed 675,000 Americans out of a population of fewer than 106 million people, with most of the deaths taking healthy young people.

There was also tremendous socialist and anarchist ferment on the home front in the lead-up to the 1920 election. On September 16, 1920, a bomb went off on Wall Street, killing 38 people and wounding hundreds. This came on the heels of a series of bomb attacks across America by anarchists following Luigi Galleani.

Thinking about it, the parallels between now and one hundred years ago are uncanny. As in 1920, we’re heading into an election in 2020 on the heels of war (two decades of it), one epidemic disease (that politicized decision-making turned into an economic disaster), and a series of anarchist riots and terrorist attacks across America. All of which gets me back to Harding and his slogan: A return to normalcy.

While everyone likes a bit of excitement now and then, people crave the normal, especially people who care for young children or who are elderly. At least, they crave normal when normal is virtuous. In North Korea, normal is awful.

For the majority of Americans, however, normal has been a good thing. When our troops came home from WWII they craved the American normal as much as their fathers had upon their return from the first European War.

I was a child of the WWII generation (meaning that I was born after the war, but every adult in my world had experienced it, sometimes with incredible brutality), so I saw firsthand how all these adults also embraced normal. They walked out of the camps and off the battlefields, got jobs, got married, had children, and lived normal lives.

It doesn’t mean that they were necessarily all normal people. Looking back, my parents and many of their peers were deeply damaged by their experiences — but they were still creating lives of studied American normality. We boomers benefitted from it, although most of the boomers have been anything but grateful.

The same is true in the black community. Once the Republicans freed blacks from the slavery imposed upon them, they exploded into productivity. Leftists briefly obsessed about the deadly and vile Tulsa race riot in 1921 because they thought it would hurt Trump. What they didn’t note was that the Tulsa black community was an extraordinary, vibrant, and productive community only 60 years after blacks emerged from two centuries of slavery. Noting that, of course, would destroy the narrative that, 155 years after slavery ended, American blacks still can’t recover.

In fact, before the left got its tentacles into blacks with the welfare state, blacks were thriving. As Larry Elder points out in his extraordinary Uncle Tom documentary (which everyone should see), in many regions across America after WWII, blacks had more intact families (mom, dad, and kids), and faster economic growth than any other racial group. And think about the incredible creativity and growth of the Harlem Renaissance. Despite overt prejudice and the South and equally malevolent covert prejudice in the rest of America, blacks were still managing to thrive.

With welfare, though, leftists told black men that welfare was a form of reparations, so they should give up their jobs and their family should look to the government. That made men redundant, so many of them turned to fathering illegitimate children and engaging in crime to give their lives meaning and purpose, and created generational poverty with single mothers raising fatherless children. The left killed black normalcy.

One of the main differences between 1920 and 2020 is that, for the first time in American history, we have a major political party that absolutely rejects the entire notion of normal. They rejected it on racial grounds. They reject it on sex grounds. They reject it on climate grounds. They reject it on law and order grounds. They reject normal wherever it tries to take root. This is the leftist’s way of accruing power.


 Australia: Chef puts out an advert for jobs in his restaurant and 470 people apply but only TWO of them are Australian - as he claims 'the youth of today simply don't work as hard as foreigners'

A chef says he has struggled to hire Australian employees during the coronavirus pandemic because they are happy receiving the JobSeeker payment.

Attila Yilmaz recently posted an advertisement for a couple of roles at Pazar Food Collective in Canterbury, Sydney's south-west. Mr Yilmaz was inundanted with 470 applications but only two of the candidates were Australian citizens, while an additional two were permanent residents.

'I don't want to sound like an old man, but I just don't feel like the youth of today are willing to do the work these foreign workers do,' he told the ABC.

Mr Yilmaz, who pays his workers above award wages and full entitlements, is concerned the JobSeeker payments are encouraging Australians to stay at home.

'It's been a very good deal for people in an industry that's been broken for a very long time,' he said.

The JobSeeker payment is financial help for Australians between 22 and the Age Pension age, who are looking for work.

The elevated unemployment benefit will remain at $1,100 a fortnight until September 27.

From that date until the end of the year the $550 coronavirus supplement will be cut by $300 to make the overall fortnightly payment $800.

The mutual obligation rules requiring people to search for four jobs a month restarted on August 4.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison previously claimed Australians were refusing to work because the JobSeeker payment was too high.

'Well, on JobSeeker, we doubled the payment with the supplement because we knew unemployment was going to be rising steadily and it has and that's been devastating,' he told 2GB radio in June.

'What we have to be worried about now is that we can't allow the JobSeeker payment to become an impediment to people going out and doing work, getting extra shifts.

'And we are getting a lot of anecdotal feedback from small businesses, even large businesses where some of them are finding it hard to get people to come and take the shifts because they're on these higher levels of payment.'



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

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

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

7 August, 2020 

Planned Parenthood Is Still Delivering on Margaret Sanger’s Racist Vision

One of Planned Parenthood’s largest abortion affiliates has finally disavowed Planned Parenthood’s founder for “her racist legacy” and her “connections to the eugenics movement.” However, this symbolic bowing to the far left’s “cancel culture” doesn’t change the fact that the organization is still influenced by her inhumane beliefs.

Planned Parenthood of Greater New York (PPGNY) is finally removing Margaret Sanger’s name from its Manhattan clinic after decades of choosing to overlook the organization’s white supremacist roots.

Sanger said all sorts of disturbing things, like, “We don’t want the word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population.” She favored the forced sterilization of those she deemed “unfit,” she gave a speech to the Ku Klux Klan, and she once wrote, “The most merciful thing that the large family does to one of its infant members is to kill it” (mind you, like Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, she was talking about a child who had already been born).

PPGNY’s national organization, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, has long said that many of Sanger’s racist quotes have been taken out of context. While the national organization acknowledges some of Sanger’s many flaws, it says her story is “complicated” and it hasn’t totally disavowed her. It still labels her a “woman of heroic accomplishments” and it still calls its “highest honor” the Margaret Sanger Award.

However, in its news release, PPGNY parted ways with the standard talking points, acknowledging what it called “Planned Parenthood’s contributions to historical reproductive harm within communities of color.” Yet for years, Planned Parenthood has had the audacity to claim that it believes Black lives matter.

As we know all too well, the “cancel culture” is one of the far left’s frequently used tools to destroy anyone or anything that doesn’t comport with its radical ideology. Never at a loss for hypocrisy, though, the left frequently attempts to nuance the troubling pasts of its heroes, trying to make them acceptable while at the same time tearing down statues of those who helped make America the exceptional nation it is.

Some will accuse me of having a double standard when I say that it’s OK to “cancel” Margaret Sanger while I defend statesmen like George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. Yet there’s a significant difference. While we roundly condemn Washington’s and Jefferson’s participation in the evil of slavery, we can still celebrate their lifelong work to create a nation built on the highest ideals of humanity.

On the other hand, Sanger’s open racism, her promotion of eugenics and her advocacy of forced sterilizations to keep those she deemed “unfit” from “breeding” was her vision. Planned Parenthood was formed on that vision, and much of that vision still exists at Planned Parenthood today.

Planned Parenthood still considers certain people less than human and rejects the science of prenatal development by calling babies in the womb “clumps of cells,” “tissue masses,” and “products of conception.”

Planned Parenthood also still targets minority communities. If Black lives matter to Planned Parenthood, then why, according to a 2015 study, are nearly 80 percent of its surgical abortion facilities located within walking distance of minority neighborhoods? According to the Guttmacher Institute, in 2014, a year when Black women only accounted for about 13% of the U.S. population, they made up 28% of those having abortions. Each year in New York City, more Black babies are aborted than born.

Pro-lifers have been pointing out Sanger’s despicable views for decades, and Planned Parenthood didn’t just find out about Sanger’s past yesterday. So why is Planned Parenthood only now rejecting its founder—and why isn’t the entire organization doing it?

It strikes me how blatantly we see the double standard at work here. Sure, Sanger is getting “canceled,” but only at one of Planned Parenthood’s facilities and in a relatively mild way. Planned Parenthood still talks about the good she allegedly did and is willing to ascribe her transgressions to being a woman “of her time.”

How ironic that the left doesn’t give America’s Founders the same courtesy. There’s no allowance for context; no allowances for being “men of their time.” There is only cancellation and demands that everything they produced (ie. America) be destroyed.

Until Planned Parenthood stops dehumanizing living, growing children in the womb; until it ceases performing abortions; and until it stops locating facilities and advertising heavily in and around minority communities, it will continue carrying out Margaret Sanger’s original vision. “Canceling” Margaret Sanger and the symbolic gesture of removing her name from a building won’t change any of that.


Washington Post Praises Chinese Communist Party as Bastion of Prosperity for Youth

The Washington Post published a report on Monday sharing glowing stories of Chinese youth celebrating the history of communism in their nation. Full of hope for the youth of the nation, the article built an image of the Chinese Communist Party as being full of vibrance and hope, a juxtaposition to President Trump's portrayal of China as a global threat.

"Trump views China’s Communist Party as a threat. Young Chinese see it as a ticket to a better future," the article headline promises whimsically.

"Chinese who were complaining in February about the party’s coronavirus coverup reflect more positively on their experience now that they can see, through the American example, how much worse it could have been," the Washington Post author says of her subjects, wistfully described in front of a statue of a young Mao Zedong in Changsha.

One young member of the CCP was described by the Post as "dressed more like a pop star than a propaganda star." She excitedly described her visit to Mao's statue as a pilgrimage and rite of passage for a young member of the Party.

The Post then transitions into a section of the article that could very easily be mistaken for a recruitment advertisement for the CCP, promising better housing, better lives, and even better marriage for members of the Party. Those who do not join will face hardships in the communist nation, the author wrote.

Party membership means better education prospects and better jobs, more politically advantageous marriages and nicer apartments. For many, it is a ticket to a brighter future.

“If you want an important job, or even to work in a university or a social organization, if you’re not a party member, you won’t be promoted,” said Zheng Yongnian, a Chinese political scientist who teaches at the National University of Singapore. “Plus, young people these days are quite nationalistic, so they are choosing to join the party.”

Some 80 percent of recruits last year were younger than 35, according to official party statistics.

With only sparing criticism about how difficult membership could be to attain and how General Secretary Xi Jinping has required more ideology purity throughout his command of the CCP, the article lays out a promising future for the dutiful communists of the world's most populous nation.

Of course, the Post had plenty of criticism for the United States leadership. China, for all its flaws, had COVID-19 under control, the newspapers asserted. Secretary Pompeo and President Trump both exhibited fear of being overtaken by China on a global level, the report says, hence their harsh words against the Party.

"This just shows that they fear a stronger Communist Party and a stronger China after we showed our might in the battle against the coronavirus epidemic," Communist Party School professor Wang Wei told the Post.

Completely absent from the newspaper's glowing report of joining the CCP for the youth of China, however, was any mention of the atrocities the Party has committed on the people of China. As the controlling party of China sterilizes the Uhygur Muslims, imprisons them for their faith, and murders them, the Washington Post suggests the children of China join the ranks of the oppressors.

Nevermind that Bejing ordered the imprisonment of anyone speaking out against the agenda of the CCP and the disenfranchisement of their whole families when there's a chance to punch at the president. Forget that China lied to the world about the release of a deadly novel virus that has now taken the lives of millions and crippled the global economy.

The Washington Post was under fire in 2011 for publishing sponsored inlays of English language propaganda from the Chinese Communist Party. The embedded articles seemed carefully planted to look like they belonged on the newspaper's website as a blog called "China Watch." Only small lettering off to the side of the page noted that the alarming pro-CCP material was not published by the Washington Post, they had only taken money to make it look like they published it.

This time, the Washington Post is responsible for every word.


The Troubling Goals of the Black Lives Matter Movement

Politicians and various social justice groups have long used labels that have nothing to do with the real intent of legislation, or an organization, to dupe the public. But, to paraphrase Shakespeare, a rose by any other name is still a rose.

Numerous “civil rights” bills have been passed by Congress over the years that have nothing to do with civil rights, but how many members are brave enough to point that out and vote against them?

Which brings me to the Black Lives Matter movement. How many mainstream reporters have bothered to delve into the background and founding principles of the rapidly spreading organization to which even white CEOs are contributing gobs of money in what appears to be an attempt to protect themselves and their businesses from any potential charge of racism?

The Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty, which self-describes as “an ecumenical, nonprofit research organization that promotes the benefits of free enterprise to religious communities, business people, students and educators,” has exposed the ideology of Black Lives Matter.

According to Acton, the founding principles of BLM include a guaranteed minimum income for all black people, free health care, free schooling, free food, free real estate, gender reassignment surgery, and free abortion (already disproportionately high among African American women, “27.1 per 1,000 women compared with 10 per 1,000 for white women,” but apparently unborn black lives don’t matter to BLM).

Washington, D.C.’s local BLM chapter has even called for “no new jails” (which would likely guarantee an increase in crime, much of it perpetrated in black communities—see the District’s crime stats, see Chicago, see Los Angeles). BLM also demands reparations and wants to create a “global liberation movement” that will “overturn U.S. imperialism [and] capitalism.”

According to The New York Post, “Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors said in a newly surfaced video from 2015 that she and her fellow organizers are ‘trained Marxists.'”

Breitbart News, a conservative syndicated news website, reported that “Cullors, 36, was the protege of Eric Mann, former agitator of the Weather Underground domestic terror organization, and spent years absorbing the Marxist-Leninist ideology that shaped her worldview.”

Driving through what appeared to be a mostly white neighborhood in Washington, D.C., last weekend I was surprised, though I probably shouldn’t have been, to see quite a few “Black Lives Matter” signs on front lawns and on cars. A few friends have posted the BLM sign on their social media pages. I wonder if any of these people know the background and goals of the movement, or the radical ideology behind it.

There are a growing number, especially among the young, who have been “educated” in our once-great universities by some professors who support the BLM movement and promote similar or identical ideologies.

Part of what they are taught is that America began as a white, slave-owning patriarchy and that slaves actually built America. They quickly absorb this, then come home to tell their parents they are part of the problem.

This is a major reason school choice is important if the nation is to be preserved. It should also be obvious that parents must be more selective in where they allow—and in many cases pay for—their children to attend colleges and universities and choose one where their values are strengthened and the nation not undermined.

Black lives matter because like all lives, everyone is endowed with unalienable rights. But the BLM movement might be more harmful than helpful to African Americans.

BLM’s foundational principles and goals seem closer to those of China and the former Soviet Union. If more people understood that, they might wake up and realize that the United States, as Ronald Reagan used to say, is only one generation from losing it all.


NYC Health Commissioner to De Blasio: Your COVID Response Sucks, So I'm Outta Here

Look, she was in no way totally immune from criticism regarding the city's response to coronavirus, but at least Dr. Oxiris Barbot, New York City's now-former health commissioner, turned a corner and warned Mayor Bill de Blasio that COVID was tearing through the Big Apple rapidly and the results could be disastrous. She presented him with the data. He ignored it. Now, both were saying pretty much the exact same thing in February regarding outdoor activities: "live your lives, New Yorkers." But Bill was still saying that in mid-March, when it was pretty clear the city was suffering from an outbreak, telling people to go out and eat and see movies.

Unlike most of the country, New York is the mecca for COVID in the United States. The outbreak could be traced right to the Empire State, which is getting praise from Acela Media because why not? What are these clowns going to do…attack de Blasio and Gov. Andrew Cuomo for their reckless response to this virus? No. They can't. They're Democrats and these writers need ammunition to attack Trump in an election year. New York is the all-time champion in total cases and deaths. Florida will never come close. Sorry, it just won't. New York forced nursing homes to admit COVID-positive patients, which killed thousands of the elderly and infirmed. The most vulnerable were sacrificed on the altar of American liberalism. Kill the elderly, infect everyone—that's the New York way of responding to COVID. It's also the idiot's way.

Even as the city was still dealing with COVID, Dr. Barbot had to deal with Mayor Billy's "woke" governance that's destroyed the city. He's defunding the police by $1 billion; the city's plain-clothes anti-crime unit has been disbanded, and to no one's shock, crime has spiked. It's August, and already the city has seen more shootings than in all of 2019. Kids are being blown away; de Blasio doesn't care. He does care that someone vandalized his precious Black Lives Matter mural outside Trump Tower, which he admits was never brought before the permit process…because "orange man, bad." It was out of moral urgency, you see. Oh, and the contact tracing program the city has initiated is not allowing city officials to ask new COVID patients if they participated in any mass demonstrations recently. We all know a lot of these new cases are because of the George Floyd riots. And yet, Trump is the one not listening to the experts. De Blasio put them in the back row, according to Dr. Barbot, who decided to tender her resignation today. Hey, do you blame her? De Blasio said he's banning large gatherings, except mass BLM protests. How can you work with an idiot like that? How can you work with a clown who says schools will be closed in the fall, but daycares will be open? (via NYT):

New York City’s health commissioner, Dr. Oxiris Barbot, resigned on Tuesday in protest over her “deep disappointment” with Mayor Bill de Blasio’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak and subsequent efforts to keep it in check.

Her departure came after escalating tensions between City Hall and top Health Department officials, which began at the start of the city’s outbreak in March, burst into public view.

“I leave my post today with deep disappointment that during the most critical public health crisis in our lifetime, that the Health Department’s incomparable disease control expertise was not used to the degree it could have been,” she said in her resignation email sent to Mr. de Blasio, a copy of which was shared with The New York Times.

“Our experts are world renowned for their epidemiology, surveillance and response work. The city would be well served by having them at the strategic center of the response not in the background.”

It seems like the "woke" agenda puts lives in danger. No, it's gotten people killed. And Bill doesn't care. The Left doesn't care. If it means removing Trump, getting rid of American history, and making white people feel bad about themselves, then, by all means, stack those bodies high, right? That's liberalism in 2020.



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

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

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

6 August, 2020 

How ‘Wokeness’ Is a Product of Marxism

“Wokeness” has become the nomenclature for the ideology or mentality of radical leftist activists on college campuses, at protests, and on social media.

But wokeness has not been limited to just a handful of activists. It’s becoming a dominant mindset in the American workplace, in both the public and private sectors, as a method to promote “anti-racism.”

A Heritage Foundation panel on July 24 addressed first what wokeness actually is, but also how it has crept into corporate boardrooms and why it’s such a problem.

Angela Sailor, vice president of The Feulner Institute at The Heritage Foundation, said that “pervasive trends under the guise of equality makes diversity training in government, and corporate America, and schools, destructive, divisive, and harmful.”

James Lindsay, the co-author of a forthcoming book, “Cynical Theories: How Activist Scholarship Made Everything about Race, Gender, and Identity—and Why This Harms Everybody,” says wokeness is actually a combination of many different ideas.

“Wokeness is a fusion of the critical theory school of neo-Marxism, which is a form of identity politics, and radical activism that has a very particular worldview that separates the world into liberationists versus oppressors or oppressed versus oppressors,” said Lindsay, whose book is set for release Aug. 25.

It marries that, Lindsay said, with postmodern theory, which holds that “all applications of truth are actually applications of politics by other means.”

In other words, the truth is malleable, based on power and who drives the narrative of what truth really is. In effect, the truth is replaced by my truth.

Marxism is a mostly economic theory, with origins in the 19th century. Those ideas, he said, led to some of the worst atrocities in world history.

Traditional Marxist ideas were adopted but changed in the 1920s by Italian communist Antonio Gramsci and others, and became the project of the Frankfurt school of critical theory. That new theory focused more on shaping culture, Lindsay said, marrying traditional Marxism with Freudian psychology and other social theories to change the way people think.

The goal of postmodernists who were part of that movement was to “deconstruct the very meanings of things,” said Lindsay.

Those ideas reached a new phase with the writings of Herbert Marcuse, a Columbia University professor in the 1960s and 1970s who advocated radical activism based on identity politics.

But this radicalism burned out, Lindsay said, because its violence ultimately made it unpopular.

The radicals then left the streets and embedded themselves in our schools and universities.

“It has all of the conflict theory—separate the world into oppressor-versus-oppressed classes—with zero-sum conflict, no ability to agree or understand one another across those, and then takes on the postmodern understanding of truth being just politics by other means, which removes all of the brakes standing up against it,” Lindsay said.

Seeing the world through that lens is what constitutes wokeness.

Mike Gonzalez, a senior fellow at The Heritage Foundation and author of the new book “The Plot to Change America: How Identity Politics Is Dividing the Land of the Free,” explained how these ideas entered the workplace under the guise of combating racism and why they are so toxic.

“Anti-racism training is a con,” Gonzalez said. “These consultants get paid exorbitant amounts of money. Often these fees come from taxpayer funds.”

Though many of the advocates of wokeness are con artists, we have to take them seriously, Gonzalez said, because there is a strong ideological component to it.

“The true name of anti-racism training is consciousness-raising struggle sessions,” he said.

It’s used to demolish the “hegemonic narrative,” which in simpler terms, Gonzalez said, is simply “the American story, the American dream, the promise of liberty and prosperity that have attracted about 100 million immigrants from all over the world from 1850 to the present.”

Christopher Rufo, the director of the Center on Wealth and Poverty at the Seattle-based Discovery Institute and contributing editor at City Journal, has delved into how “anti-racist training,” together with the Black Lives Matter movement, has invaded the boardroom and government.

“This is now becoming the default ideology of the bureaucracy, and people are making, in some cases, millions of dollars offering essentially political indoctrination on the public dime to public employees,” Rufo said.

All levels of government, as well as nonprofits and corporations, now have human resources departments that have adopted critical race theory as their dominant functioning ideology, he said, adding that it’s become a particularly big problem at the federal level.

“You have an apparatus of federal power that has grown extraordinarily since the days of Woodrow Wilson through [Franklin Roosevelt] through [Lyndon Johnson] in this kind of permanently expanding power that until recently, at least theoretically, operated under the ostensible ideology of the social sciences, of neutrality, but it’s really been abandoned,” Rufo said.

The permanent bureaucracy, no matter who the president is, has adopted critical race theory as its ideology of choice.

That’s leading to a “change in regime” that has never been voted on or approved by the American people, Rufo said. The result is that the machinery of the bureaucracy will be weaponized against the American people.

Rufo spoke of potential ways to stop this form of regime change. He said that it’s important to create institutional infrastructure to protect people from being targeted and “canceled.”

Gonzalez said that it is essential to inform other Americans of the transformation taking place and warn them of the radical changes to come if these ideas are not stopped.

“The more we write about this, the more we expose people to what has taken place, to why, who did it, how they did it, and what is their real goal here, we can start to demolish this idea that ‘no, this is nice because people need … justice,’” Gonzalez said, adding: “Let’s really be honest, and without rancor in our heart, just expose them. Sunshine can be a great disinfectant. Let’s really allow in the light and expose this for what it is.”


Identity Politics Divides America

America’s founding creed is “e pluribus unum.” “Out of many, one.” That is the motto that appears on the seal of the House of Representatives. The greatness of America comes from the melting of many cultures and ethnic backgrounds into one American family.

Neither Congress, nor this nation, can function when it is divided along demographic lines. But that’s exactly what a dangerously large group of individuals in the modern Democrat Party are now intent on doing.

To make matters worse, these same individuals falsely smear Republicans with vile labels like racist and sexist during honest policy debates, while excusing blatant racist acts on their own side.

For example, it was discovered last year that Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam literally wore either blackface or a Ku Klux Klan hood—he couldn’t decide which. But he was let off the hook, and he still has his job.

Let’s be honest here: No fair-minded person could deny that if that were a conservative governor, he would have been run out of office the same day by the very leftist politicians who allowed Northam to skate.

Why is that? Because it’s assumed by liberal coastal elites who dominate our media and shape our popular culture that Democrats have pure hearts and that Republicans are diabolical.

To leftists, producing liberal policy victories is more important than standing against hate on their own side. How else do you explain the consistent mainstream media narrative that reports Republican mistakes as news, but buries Democrat errors under a headline of “Republicans Pounce”?

While leftists use the Black Lives Matter movement to excuse the destruction and looting of black small businesses and black homes, we hear nothing from leftists on the House floor pushing back on this violence.

We don’t hear about the death of St. Louis Police Chief David Dorn. He was killed by rioters. Our hearts break for his family because his life mattered, too.

Furthermore, it is offensive for leftists to insinuate that law and order policies don’t matter to African Americans. The silence is perhaps most deafening when it comes to abortion in the black community, a killer of more than 20 million black lives in the United States since 1973. Our hearts break because unborn black babies’ lives matter, too.

The woke mob is now “outraged” over federal officers defending federal buildings in Portland because leftist mayors refuse to do their job. I’ve heard those opposed to the presence of federal agents argue that this is about a Republican president trampling on Democrat governors’ rights. They are missing the point. This issue is not about conservatives or leftists, it’s about the difference between safe streets and lawless anarchy.

It just so happens that the lawless anarchy only happens in cities with liberal mayors. If they don’t want to protect the life, liberty, and property of their towns, then the federal government, at the direction of this president, will do it for them.

But I suspect that these bad-faith accusations would be different if the parties were reversed. It all comes down to weaponizing identity politics to divide this country and achieve power.

Those who traffic in unfair name-calling don’t want to unify Americans as part of a shared history, a shared pursuit of justice, or economic prosperity. Identity politics stands diametrically opposed to e pluribus unum, and therefore, stands diametrically opposed to the values of the United States of America.


What the Silence Over Bill's Alleged Visit to Epstein's Pedophile Island Tells us About the Acela Media

The Acela train is Amtrak's flagship high speed service along the Northeast Corridor in the Northeastern United States between Washington, D.C. and Boston via 16 intermediate stops, including Providence, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York City

In VIP, we noted how Bill Clinton is earning his “slick Willy” moniker regarding the latest bombshell from the trove of Jeffrey Epstein-Ghislaine Maxwell documents that unsealed last week. That being former President Bill Clinton being spotted on Epstein’s infamous pedophile island. Of course, the Clinton camp denies the former president was ever there, but Maxwell has alleged that there are tapes of two prominent politicians having sex with minors. Maxwell, Epstein’s alleged partner in coordinating these depraved sex acts with underage girls, was recently arrested by federal authorities, denied bail, and being held in the same federal facility as Epstein before his highly suspicious suicide. With three passports and numerous accounts with millions of dollars, she’s a flight risk. She’s reportedly been given paper clothes to prevent self-harm.

Still, the former president being spotted on the island with minors That seems like at least something to look into, right? Epstein was a Clinton ally. He was connected with some of the world’s richest, most powerful families. To simply put it, there’s definitely a motive regarding seeing both Epstein and Maxwell be put six feet under. I’m not saying that’s what happened to Epstein, though the circumstances surrounding his death are amazingly irregular, almost a perfect alignment of events and actions that would make way for his death. Anyways, the point is he’s gone. And with these new documents, you’d think there would be at least some mention on the mainstream circuits. We’re not expecting much, but it’s been quiet. I mean, like German U-Boats in the Black Pit silence. Nothing. They’re suffocating this story with a pillow and those who do report on it barely give it the light of day. Is it shocking? No. Is it expected from these clowns? Yes. A former president was seen dabbling on some debauched island with an indicted child sex trafficker. That seems…like a problem (via Fourth Watch) [emphasis mine]:

A federal judge on Thursday unsealed a trove of court documents related to Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell, as the latter awaits trial. In it, Virginia Giuffre, who has accused Epstein and Maxwell of sexually abusing her, details incidents she says she witnessed of the pair having sex with girls as young as 15-years-old.

But that's not all. Giuffre reveals in the just unsealed interview from 2011 that former president Bill Clinton visited Epstein’s private island, Little St. James Island, along with Maxwell and “two young girls” from New York. “I remember asking Jeffrey what’s Bill Clinton doing here kind of thing, and he laughed it off and said well he owes me a favor,” Giuffre said in the interview.....

But this sensational story involving former President Clinton - last seen eulogizing John Lewis just this week - has barely caught the attention of the legacy media. While the story has been covered dozens of times on Fox News, CNN viewers haven't heard anything about it unless they saw the one report at 6am on Friday morning. Nothing this weekend. MSNBC? Literally not a single mention (according to TV Eyes).

Bill Clinton's alleged trip to "pedophile island" was not mentioned once today on the Sunday shows - in fact, it hasn't been mentioned at all by ABC or CBS. To NBC's credit, it was covered on the Today show Friday morning.....

What does this tell us about the Acela Media? Quite a bit. As Glenn Greenwald tweeted Friday night, "I don't think there's been a bigger gap between (a) the importance, multi-layered and fascinating aspects of a news story and (b) the mainstream media's weirdly steadfast avoidance of it than the Jeffrey Epstein saga."

The media has largely avoided this story, while the media remains intertwined with it. It was less than 10 years ago that Jeffrey Epstein was sitting down for dinner with some famous houseguests, a short 18 months after he was released from jail after pleading guilty to a lesser charge of solicitation of prostitution with a minor. ABC anchor George Stephanopoulos was there. Former NBC and CBS anchor Katie Couric was there. Former E! and Netflix host Chelsea Handler was too. Why were they there? They've all said it was the one and only time they met Epstein, and they were unaware of his past.

So on one hand, you have the New York elites who intermingled with Epstein. But then we introduce former President Bill Clinton. As Drew Holden documented in his Twitter thread, there was almost uniform silence connecting Clinton and Epstein after the Thursday night story from every major media organization.

Oh, and the FBI knew about Epstein’s creepiness as well and did nothing, despite being in contact with one of his accusers before his formal indictment on child sex trafficking charges last year. Also, they had that photo of Giuffre with Prince Andrew before their 2011 interview with her.

They’re deep-sixing a story to protect Bill. Typical.


Big backdown by Leftist library

A sheriff in Nevada on Monday sent a letter to the county's public library board letting them know deputies would not be responding to its 911 calls. Douglas County Sheriff Dan Coverley cited the board considering a diversity statement that endorses the Black Lives Matter movement.

“The Douglas County Public Library denounces all acts of violence, racism and disregard for human rights. We support #BlackLivesMatter. We resolutely assert and believe that all forms of racism, hatred, inequality and injustice don’t belong in our society," part of the proposed statement said.

According to Coverley, the BLM movement has caused "violence, property damage and the closing of local businesses."

"The Black Lives Matter movement openly calls all law enforcement corrupt and racist on their website. They call for the defunding of police, and we have seen how a lack of active law-enforcement has worked in Seattle, Washington and Portland, Oregon," Coverley wrote. "Numerous Black Lives Matter protests have resulted in violence, property damage and the closing of local businesses, sometimes permanently. To support this movement is to support violence and to openly ask for it to happen in Douglas County."

"Due to your support of Black Lives Matter and the obvious lack of support or trust with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office, please do not feel the need to call 911 for help. I wish you good luck with disturbances and lewd behavior, since those are just some of the recent calls my office has assisted you with in the past," he concluded.

Following a backlash, Douglas County Library Director Amy Dodson met with Coverley to discuss the potential diversity statement.

"Sheriff Coverley and I had a very candid conversation about the statement and we both expressed our opinions regarding the intent of our exchanged correspondence,” Dodson told Fox News “We agreed that we both support the people of Douglas County and this may have been an unfortunate circumstance of misunderstanding. The library respects and supports the work of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office and appreciates everything they do to keep our community safe.”

“I am passionate about and proud of the work the Sheriff’s Office does for all members of this community,” Coverley clarified. “This has been a difficult time to be a law enforcement professional and can be disheartening when we perceive that our office may be under attack. My response was rooted in my belief that these issues need to be openly discussed in a way that values diversity and law enforcement.”

It's sad that we have to have this kind of conversation at all. Law enforcement officers should be respected and not feel like they're constantly on the defense. Their job is to help people, and yet they're having to do their job and worry about increased violence against them. Sheriff Coverley, however, is right. This is a difficult time for police officers but changes – especially when it comes to law enforcement reforms – should be discussed in a way that respects officers and the community.



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

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

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

5 August, 2020 

'Cancel Culture': Old Tyranny in New Bottles

If the progressives succeed, they will create what the Founders feared.

The last few weeks we’ve seen programmatically progressive media outlets purging their political bedfellows for deviating from the “woke” party line. Some, like erstwhile New York Times editor James Bennet, confessed and apologized for their alleged sins voluntarily, like an old Bolshevik apparatchik in a show-trial. Others, like Times editor Bari Weiss and Atlantic writer Andrew Sullivan, resigned before they were hustled to the guillotine, at least salvaging some self-respect.

And it’s not just today’s people and institutions that are facing the baying mobs of mostly callow millennials who pitch a fit over anything that challenges their fragile self-esteem and “smelly little orthodoxies.” For months we’ve watched two-bit anarchists and race-hustlers knocking down monuments from our history as a graphic repudiation of America and its defining principles––a 21st century version of the old Roman damnatio memoriae, in which enemies of the state or emperor were disappeared from history by removing any public reference to them in inscriptions, statues, or books.

Indeed, today’s “cancel culture” is nothing new. It is just the latest manifestation of tyranny: As Aristotle defined it, “arbitrary power . . . which is responsible to no one, and governs all alike, whether equals or betters, with a view to its own advantage, not to that of its subjects, and therefore against their will. No free man willingly endures such a government.”

Historically, the tyrant has achieved that power by violence, especially against anyone who appear to be a threat to his ambitions or power. Herodotus has a famous anecdote about the tyrant’s use of violence. In the 7th century BC, Periander, the tyrant of Corinth, deliberating over how to keep his power safe from rivals, sent a messenger to Thrasybulus of Miletus asking his advice. Thrasybulus led the messenger into a field of wheat, and as he questioned him during their walk, broke off the tallest ears of grain. Periander got the message: “Kill outstanding citizens.”

Today’s leftists haven’t yet descended into that level of political murder. Instead they practice character assassination, the destruction of their enemies’ careers and reputations. Their weapons are not daggers or poison, but the catalogue of question-begging epithets, particularly “racism”––after all, as they keep telling us, “words are violence.” What’s also typically modern about their purges is the emphasis on personal feelings and identity, and complaints not about actual crimes or injustices, but confected ones like “systemic racism” and white cops targeting black men for execution. The subalterns at the Times who got their editor fired over an op-ed by Republican Senator Tom Cotton claimed that it made “people of color” on the staff feel less “safe,” as though affluent, privileged members of the cognitive elite live, like hoaxer Jessie Smollett, in daily fear of packs of Klansmen roaming Manhattan looking for blacks to lynch.

Therapeutic solace, not correcting injustices, is what in part the demands for “inclusion” is about. It’s not about “diversity” and working in an organization that reflects the demographic variety of America. If it were, there would be a lot more conservatives and Christians working at the Times or Atlantic. It’s about establishing a safe, comforting “herd of independent minds,” to borrow art critic Harold Rosenberg’s phrase, a “safe space” in which nothing challenges or upsets the “woke” persona of righteous “social justice warriors.” It’s about something no one people before the age of Freud ever thought about: How any individual other than the sick and destitute “feels” about himself and his circumstances.

But make no mistake, for all its therapeutic sensibilities, the “woke” herd is mainly about achieving the quintessential totalitarian aim–– the autocratic power that defines the tyrant. That’s what makes the current progressive media so important: Their incessant coverage of “cancel culture” and the violent protests gives the “woke” the power of publicity that confirm their self-righteousness, legitimizes them with the “halo effect” from prestigious cultural institutions, and bestows on them the shopworn romance of revolution, just as a poster of the Caucasian psychopath Che Guevara does in their bedrooms.

Of course, violence is still a necessary tool of the aspiring tyrant, who uses murder to remove rivals and challengers, and intimidate the mass of sheep into remaining sheep. Destroying and vandalizing public monuments and private businesses, and physically attacking the police, are telegenic advertisements for the rioters own power and the civil authorities’ weakness. Allowing this mayhem to continue for two months strengthens that power as well as the status of the mobs. And the appeasement by mayors, governors, and Democrat politicians, whether from fear or political calculation, validates the charges that America is corrupt, unjust, and guilty of institutionalized racial injustice. Why else would official authority retreat and placate the mob, going so far as to kneel before them in contrition?

And, this failure of nerve in the face of public violence allows mostly middle-class poseurs and layabouts to get all this attention and validation on the cheap. It’s a lot easier to strut, scream epithets, and throw rocks, bricks, and bottles at the cops when you know it’s unlikely that you will experience the wonderfully mind-concentrating effects of a nightstick bouncing off your skull, followed by a trip to the emergency room, and then arrest and trial. “Social justice” is one thing, but a criminal conviction staining your public record is taking it too far.

What this protest theater suggests is that this level of riots and violence is not going to bring on a revolution that radically changes the American political order. The savvier members of Black Lives Matter know this, so their aim is to create enough disorder to hurt Trump’s chances for reelection, and then install a pliant Democrat who will play Charlie McCarthy to the radical Dems’ Edgar Bergan. Whether by design or chance, the capitulation of the Democrats to the Bernie Sanders/AOC wing of the part has strengthened this tactic.

So too have the lockdowns, which have damaged Trump’s signature achievement, an economy revitalized after eight years of Obama-Biden malfeasance. Along with the subsequent ongoing riots and protests, they have created a sense that the country is dangerously out of control. I’m not one for conspiracy theories, but it’s suspicious that the second wave of lockdowns and the blue-state enabling of the violent protests happened just as the economy was showing signs of recovery.

Finally, “fundamentally transforming” America doesn’t need a violent revolution. What we are witnessing today is the acceleration of changes begun over a hundred years ago. The critical factor in moving this country from political freedom to soft despotism has been the rewriting of the Constitution, and this has been happening since Woodrow Wilson. The progressive ideal of technocratic government by means of metastasizing federal bureaus and agencies has been created, and is so entrenched in our political culture that most Republicans and “conservatives” seldom question it. Today, the idea of unalienable natural rights like freedom of speech, peaceful assembly, and bearing arms are under assault, as they have been since progressive Charles Beard in 1912 call them “obsolete and indefensible.” Hence today’s progressives agitate for limiting the Second Amendment, and curtailing free speech, which is the aim of “cancel culture.”

Also under attack has been the Constitutional order of balanced and divided government. Technocracy, as Wilson understood, requires centralized and concentrated power wielded by unelected, unaccountable experts: a “bureau of skilled, economical administration,” Wilson wrote, comprising the “hundreds who are wise” to guide the thousands who are “selfish, ignorant, timid, stubborn, or foolish.” One big step to achieving the goal of weakening the balance of powers was also taken during the Wilson administration––the popular election of senators, which stripped from the sovereign states the power to appoint senators and through their checks on executive power protect the states’ interests, rights, and powers.

So no surprise that today progressives are seeking to weaken federalism by basing the number of senators on population rather than on equal representation for each state; and by abolishing the Electoral College to create the tyranny of the majority feared by the Founders. The result of these changes, if effected, will be to further limit the freedom and autonomy of individuals, states, businesses, and civil society­­––just as during the pandemic we have seen blue-state governors and mayors suspend or compromise the natural rights to bear arms, peacefully assemble, and worship publicly.

Progressives have long desired and worked for those changes to the Constitution. If achieved they will create what the Founders feared––tyranny and the end of our political freedom, the ultimate aim of “cancel culture.” When that happens, it won’t just be this reporter or that institution that will be cancelled­­––it will be the United States and the principles, virtues, and political order that have made it the freest, richest, most powerful country in history.


The Great Deletion

Reddit’s purge of ‘hateful’ forums shows us how unfree the internet is becoming.

My two most recent columns for spiked dealt with cancel culture and hate-crime hoaxes. Thanks to the internet being what it is, events during the past month have provided me with a perfect real-life combination of these two trends.

On 29 July, Reddit, the self-proclaimed front page of the internet, deleted a popular ‘subreddit’ (a type of forum specific to the platform) dealing with hate-crime hoaxes. (Those so inclined can check out what is now simply a blank page here.) That same day, Reddit also deleted a number of other popular subreddits, including the r/GenderCritical and r/TrueLesbians/ – forums known for hosting debates by female feminists about the role of trans women in the feminist movement – and a subreddit devoted to female reproductive-health issues. It also deleted r/HBD – short for human biodiversity – a page which focuses on questions of race and human genetic variation. For good measure, the site also kicked off what may have been its most popular right- and left-wing political forums respectively: r/TheDonald/ and r/ChapoTrapHouse.

The explanation Reddit gave for banning all of these communities was that they ‘promoted hate’. Having been on Reddit, this is probably not a wholly baseless claim. It is hard not to notice a small but noisy contingent of alt-righters on the HBD forum, alongside biology grad students and Charles Murray fan-boys, who seek an (elusive) wholly genetic explanation for small differences in traits like tested IQ and running speed. r/GenderCritical was attacked fairly often for criticising both straight males and trans women – often for the same reasons. And, certainly, both r/TheDonald and r/ChapoTrapHouse/ were known for crude, if often funny, memes mocking everything under the sun.

However, the deletion decision becomes a bit more surprising given what Reddit left up. While deleting r/GenderCritical/ as potentially offensive to women (of both the trans and ‘traditional’ variety), the site specifically decided not to take down the r/RapeKink subreddit, which is dedicated almost entirely to rape pornography and fetish stories (though this page was at least temporarily quarantined). r/RapeFantasy made the cut too, although a sub called r/StruggleFucking/ was eventually taken down.

For those curious in the crowd, the primary ‘bukkake’ subreddit survived as well, as did the hyper-popular subreddit just called ‘Ass’. As a free-speech absolutist, I take no real position on the existence of these forums. But it’s an odd world indeed where ‘RapeKink’ is considered less potentially harmful to women than a feminist forum. To some extent, we see here the logical application of modern ‘social justice’ morality, within which the worst sin is intolerance: TERF-y feminism is intolerant and thus bad, while rape porn is okay.

What should worry us most is that the Great Deletion has undeniably suppressed some serious ideas. The striking thing about many of the vanished subs is that they were mostly populated by wonks and geeks, not Nazis. Even if these forums may have attracted some assholes, human biodiversity, hate-crime hoaxing, gender-critical feminism, the lived experiences of lesbians and discussions about female health disorders are all essentially classroom topics of study. Offensive memes may have provided the initial justification for taking down the forums – this is the internet, after all – but lurking behind Reddit’s decision is the belief that some ideas are too dangerous for discussion of them to be allowed.

This sort of thing is becoming more common. On Twitter, a popular account called ‘Anti-Racist Science’ – which gained more than 1,000 followers during its first day active – has called for a total ban on ‘further use’ of the most common data-set of national IQ scores, put together early in the 21st century by the quantitative psychologist Richard Lynn. Lynn’s data includes the IQ test scores of more than 80 nations. But according to this Twitter account, it is ‘fraudulent’ and has been used to support ‘scientific racism’ concerning ‘the inferiority of people with African ancestry’. For good measure, the Anti-Racist Science account includes an official form that any interested follower can use to report the use of Lynn’s data or other ‘racist / race-science misinformation’ in a peer-reviewed academic paper.

Similar activity is not uncommon inside elite journals themselves. In 2016, academic David Gilborn wrote in the Journal of Educational Policy: ‘We need to (understand) that any assertion of fixed and inevitable inequalities in ability / intelligence between racial / ethnic groups is…racist.’ While I am myself a culturalist when it comes to questions of IQ and have some serious questions about Lynn’s famous data set – such as, how many years of school did the African and East European kids in his samples attend? – claims like Gilborn’s are over the top. Ability is a broad term. Is the good professor arguing that the average Samoan guy is as fleet-footed as the average Kenyan guy? If so, can’t we just go down to the track and test that?

The censoring of ideas, including some quite serious ones, as too ‘dangerous’ or ‘hateful’ to be heard is far more prevalent than most might think. Years ago, when I became active on Facebook and later Twitter, I made a list of accounts I generally disagreed with but enjoyed trolling or arguing with. That list included Minister Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam, Third World Press, You Owe Blacks Trillions, and much of the black-nationalist hotep movement. It also included provocateur Milo Yiannopolous, Alex Jones and other conspiracy theorists, Cop Block and many left- and right-leaning libertarian pages, and even the now-banned Chapo Trap House. Searching the accounts on this list a few weeks ago, I was surprised to find that essentially all of them had been disappeared across all social media – as had white nationalist Stefan Molyneux, my old debate foe Jared Taylor from the Southern Poverty Law Centre, virtually anyone considered alt-right, and even the first Black Lives Matter Facebook page I ever followed and sparred with.

While not generally a conspiracy-minded fellow, I can’t help suspecting a long game here. For decades, the US mass media – whose star reporters, producers, and on-air talent almost universally share a single cosmopolitan center-left viewpoint – had enormous influence over what written and visual content Americans were able to access. Then came the internet. And within a decade or two, commentators like Matt Drudge, Tim Pool, Joe Rogan and more than a few of those mentioned above had become some of the most well-known ‘journalists’ on the planet. To many wired-in young people, ‘boomer’ mass media began to seem increasingly dated and irrelevant. Between 2000 and 2019, some 2,100 American newspapers, many quite major, closed.

In recent years, however, mainstream media outlets seem to have adopted a two-pronged strategy of fighting back. First, by posting their own content to social-media platforms; and secondly, by backing efforts by those platforms to censor any voices which are even mildly heterodox. MSNBC, for example, is now a major player on YouTube, with more than 3.3million subscribers. Online, too, the network is losing to Fox News, which has 5.78million subscribers.

While they build their digital presence, major outlets and publications almost invariably give positive coverage to actions like the deletion of the subreddits – which Buzzfeed, Vice, MarketWatch and People magazine all reported. Buzzfeed faithfully parroted Reddit’s line that this was ‘a crackdown on communities that promote hate’. Other alternative voices – from PragerU to Cop Block (and even myself) – are not banned outright but find their content is demonetised across various platforms. Mass media outlets are now in the enviable position of being able to run stories that advocate for the removal of their competitors, while simultaneously drawing clicks to their own online content.

How should ordinary netizens respond? A first, very simple approach is simply to remember that almost anyone famously removed from social media also has a professional website. If dark political humour is your thing, you can now find The Donald here and Chapo Trap House here. Alternative media platforms like Parler are increasing in popularity, although at times it can feel like a more professionally designed 4chan. Savvy citizens might go so far as to press their elected congressmen or parliamentarians to remind tech companies of the distinction between ‘platforms’ and ‘publishers’. Technically speaking, if social-media platforms want to avoid legal liability for user behaviour by claiming to operate merely as ‘host sites’ for content generated by third parties, they should be deleting little or no legal material.

And there is one more option – keep it old school. If you are genuinely interested in controversial topics like race relations, gender or human genetics, go down to the local library and check out a book. I myself wrote a fairly solid one on hate-crime hoaxes. When we are online, though, let’s try to keep the bastards honest.


You can’t defeat racism with censorship

Afer his unhinged and seemingly interminable anti-Semitic rant, the rapper Wiley has been dropped by his management and is being investigated by the police. As if that weren’t enough, his tweets have provoked renewed calls for tighter regulation of speech on social media.

Home secretary Priti Patel has demanded an explanation from Twitter and Instagram as to why they took so long to remove Wiley’s posts. ‘Social-media companies must act faster to remove such appalling hatred from their platforms’, she said. For Labour’s shadow culture secretary, Jo Stevens, Twitter and Instagram’s ‘failure to tackle these high-profile examples of hate speech’ apparently ‘shows why we so desperately need proper legislation to force the social-media companies to keep people safe online’.

There is now a clear cross-party consensus in favour of state censorship of the internet. Labour’s main criticism of the Conservatives in this regard is that the government has been too slow to implement its proposed ‘online harms’ legislation. These new rules represent the most draconian crackdown on the internet in any Western democracy – something ministers seem oddly proud of.

It seems there is almost no social issue in the world today which cannot be answered with controls on social media. Racism? Regulate social media. People voting for populist causes? Regulate social media. People dying in a pandemic? Regulate social media.

But there are many reasons why we should oppose any and every attempt to stifle free expression – even if that means defending the rights of rappers to rant about the Jews (or some other ethnic group of their choice).

First, it is simply a myth to say that social media is a haven for free speech (which for many would-be censors is synomymous with bigoted speech). Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and PayPal have all banned users who they consider to be spreading ‘hate speech’ – a definition which extends from conspiracy theorists like Alex Jones and racist motormouth Katie Hopkins to left-wing feminists like Meghan Murphy and some Antifa organisations.

As well as overseeing their own opaque and unaccountable regimes of censorship, the social-media firms are already subject to the laws of the lands in which they operate. In the UK, where hate-speech laws, online-communications laws and public-order laws already conspire to undermine the right to free speech, nine people are arrested every single day for what they post on social media. Only last month, British police arrested a 12-year-old child for sending racist messages to a footballer. (And even when there are no legal restrictions on the average tweeter, such as in the United States, the phenomenon of cancel culture means that a few badly phrased or unorthodox posts could cost you your job or your reputation.)

When countries have tried to introduce social-media regulation on top of this, it has backfired spectacularly. It is clear why. For instance, by the time the whole internet had seen them, it might well have been obvious that Wiley’s tweets were racist and should therefore have been censored. But in order to censor content before it is seen by thousands, social-media companies have to act quickly. That tends to mean censoring first, asking questions later.

The NetzDG law in Germany, which threatens enormous fines of up to €50million on social-media firms if they fail to remove ‘hate speech’, ‘fake news’ and other illegal content within 24 hours, has forced social-media companies to take this approach. It means that all kinds of innocent people get dragged through the net of censorship and plenty of non-racist babies are thrown out with the racist bathwater. One such person whose old posts were removed was government minister Heiko Maas, who as justice minister was the very politician charged with drawing up the law. In France, new laws against fake news led Twitter to ban a campaign encouraging voter-registration which was produced and paid for by the French government.

If even government ministers and campaigns end up being censored, who could possibly know how many innocent civilians are also being silenced at the behest of some algorithm. Satirists are particularly vulnerable to being unfairly censored as even human censors are sometimes too obtuse to recognise their intent.

But more important than any of that is the fact that censorship does not and cannot defeat bigotry. It has become something of a cliché to say we need social-media regulation or hate-speech laws to prevent rising racism or even a second coming of fascism.

Leaving aside the histrionics of such predictions, they ignore the historical truth. In Weimar Germany, the Nazis and their ideas were censored – regularly, in fact. Leading Nazis including Joseph Goebbels, Theodor Fritsch and Julius Streicher were all prosecuted for hate speech before they rose to power – and Streicher was imprisoned twice. The Nazi publication Der Stürmer was regularly confiscated and its editors were taken to court on at least 36 occasions. Anti-Semitic speech was explicitly prohibited by law, leading to more than 200 prosecutions in the 15 years before Hitler came to power. ‘As subsequent history so painfully testifies’, writes civil-liberties campaigner Alan Borovoy in When Freedoms Collide, ‘this type of legislation proved ineffectual on the one occasion when there was a real argument for it’.

In contrast, the civil-rights movements of the 1950s and 1960s were intimately connected to the struggle for free speech. As historian Kevil Yuill explained recently on spiked, it is ‘always the powerless who gain the most from the freedom to speak out against their condition’ – and it is only the powerful who can establish the legal and regulatory limits to what can and cannot be said. Rules and laws around hate speech may be proposed in the name of protecting the weak, but ultimately it will be the powerful – in this case, governments or Silicon Valley tech giants – who will decide how those rules should operate.

Anyone who is serious about standing up to bigotry should go ahead and do just that. We should be winning the arguments in favour of equality and against racism, instead of demanding the false comfort of censorship.


Portland Protesters Burn Bibles, American Flag Outside Federal Courthouse

KOIN News reports that Friday's protest started out as a peaceful assembly but turned destructive at night with crowd members setting fires on the street in front of the federal courthouse.

Twitter user Ian Miles Cheong shared a video of demonstrators desecrating Bibles and the symbol of American freedom.

Cheong wrote, "Left-wing activists bring a stack of Bibles to burn in front of the federal courthouse in Portland."

In a later thread, Cheong wrote, "I don't know what burning the Bible has to do with protesting against police brutality. Do not be under the illusion that these protests and riots are anything but an attempt to dismantle all of Western Civilization and upend centuries of tradition and freedom of religion."

News reporter Danny Peterson posted a video of protesters burning an American flag while chanting about the police.

Some in Portland have made an effort to rally without violence, but the unyielding activists who are determined to destroy anything that opposes their ideology remain in the area.

According to the Jewish Press, a severed pig's head wearing a police hat was placed on top of an American flag and set on fire at the city's Justice Center last Thursday night.

Following "repeated requests" from Oregon Gov. Kate Brown, the federal government agreed to begin withdrawing federal officers from Portland last week.

Brown argued that the officers "acted as an occupying force, refused accountability, and brought violence and strife to our community."



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

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

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

4 August, 2020 

Thousands of unmasked protesters fill the streets of Berlin, fighting the government’s COVID-19 restrictions

Loudly chanting their opposition to face masks and vaccines, thousands of people gathered in Berlin on Saturday to protest against coronavirus restrictions before being dispersed by police.

Police put turnout at around 20,000 – well below the 500,000 organisers had announced as they urged a “day of freedom” from months of virus curbs.

Despite Germany’s comparatively low toll, authorities are concerned at a rise in infections over recent weeks and politicians took to social media to criticise the rally as irresponsible.

“We are the second wave,” shouted the crowd, a mixture of hard left and right and conspiracy theorists as they converged on the Brandenburg Gate, demanding “resistance” and dubbing the pandemic “the biggest conspiracy theory”.

Few protesters wore a mask or respected the 1.5-metre (five-foot) social distancing requirement, an AFP journalist reported, despite police repeatedly calling on them via megaphone to do so.

After several warnings, Berlin police ordered demonstrators to leave the area at the end of the afternoon.

Police tweeted they had launched legal proceedings against organisers for not respecting virus hygiene rules.

A handful of people held a counter demonstration, condemned by several politicians as Germany seeks to minimise transmission of a virus which had claimed more than 9,000 lives as of Saturday.

Still, the nation is seeing a far lower toll than some of its neighbours.


A Race-Based Case of Political Entitlement 

There are some urban centers around the nation where the degree of “racial entitlement” and the resulting political corruption is astoundingly brazen. One of those Democrat-controlled cities is Memphis, Tennessee. This week Democrat state Senator Katrina Robinson was indicted on 24 counts of both embezzlement and wire fraud. That a politician was indicted for corruption is nothing new, but Robinson’s response to the indictment is noteworthy.

Fortunately, prosecutors with U.S. Attorney Michael Dunavant’s office had the benefit of an impaneled grand jury with enough integrity to charge Robinson, who stands accused of stealing $600,000 in federal grants to her vocational school — much of that theft occurring after she was elected in 2018. Among the expenses she paid with those taxpayer funds: bills for her wedding and honeymoon and then, predictably, legal fees for her divorce; $170,000 in illegal salary payments to herself, personal debts; travel and entertainment; improvements to her personal residence; a vehicle for her daughter; clothing, accessories, and more.

Dunavant noted, “Protection of the U.S. Treasury and federal grant programs against theft, fraud, waste and abuse is a top priority of this office and the Department of Justice. We commend the F.B.I. and the HHS-OIG for their diligent and thorough investigation in this case.”

Reflecting Robinson’s warped sense of racial entitlement, she insists that this prosecution is the result of her race and that of her constituency. She claims, “It is believed that if I were not in the position that I’m in — that if I did not champion the voices, the views, and the faces that I represent — that I would not be in this moment right now.” Despite the charges, Robinson laughably added that she would continue to serve “with the same integrity, the same passion that I’ve demonstrated since you’ve elected me to this office.” In a social media post the day before her indictment, Robinson emphasized, “If 2020 has taught us nothing else, it has taught us the importance of electing good leaders. GO VOTE!”

Well, OK!

Apparently, she’s deploying the “victim of systemic racism” defense.

Robinson’s attorney, Janika White, set up Robinson’s entitlement defense, insisting the indictment “leads to what no one in this society wants, which is over-criminalization.” According to White, “That’s the idea where, sometimes, we criminalize activity that may not have any criminal intent.” In other words, “over-criminalization” is when a criminal believes she is so entitled that she does not perceive her criminal actions were a crime. That suggests the notion that theft is wrong must be a “white construct.”

Tennessee’s Senate Democratic Caucus issued a statement asserting: “Just like every other American, Senator Robinson deserves the presumption of innocence and due process under the law. Her case should be resolved by a court of law, not by the court of public opinion.” That is the kind of thing Democrats say when their Leftmedia propagandists can’t save one of their own from the “court of public opinion.”


Louisville Black Lives Matter Using 'Mafia Tactics' on Hispanic Business Owners

Fernando Martinez owns a restaurant group with several Hispanic eateries. He accused BLM of using “mafia tactics” and explained his position.

“There comes a time in life that you have to make a stand and you have to really prove your convictions and what you believe in,” Martinez wrote in a public Facebook post. “… All good people need to denounce this. How can you justified (sic) injustice with more injustice?”

The response by Black Lives Matter was immediate. Several members stood outside one of the business owner’s establishments demonstrating their displeasure and confronting Martinez when he came outside to talk to them.

“If you and I can sit down as human beings that we are without screaming at each other, without calling each other names, without offending each other, we can come to an understanding,” Martinez told one protester after explaining that he felt threatened by the way the demands were delivered to his business. “… How is destroying our business going to bring any justice?”

Not surprisingly, some of the business owners who were recipients of the BLM letter are caving to the pressure. The “demands” include “employ more Black people, purchase more inventory from Black retailers and undergo diversity training” according to the Louisville Courier-Journal.

Adequately represent the Black population of Louisville by having a minimum of 23% Black staff;

Purchase a minimum of 23% inventory from Black retailers or make a recurring monthly donation of 1.5% of net sales to a local Black nonprofit or organization;

Require diversity and inclusion training for all staff members on a bi-annual basis;

And display a visible sign that increases awareness and shows support for the reparations movement.

The protesters claim the business owners benefitted by the “gentrification” of the neighborhood when a public housing project was torn down. So the neighborhood is improved and this is an “injustice”? Sheesh.

One BLM activist, Phelix Crittenden, wasn’t very subtle.

Crittenden said several NuLu business owners have volunteered to sign a contract created by the protesters and are open to discussing their roles in gentrification.

But others have expressed anger and an unwillingness to work together, she said.

“How you respond to this is how people will remember you in this moment,” Crittenden said. “You want to be on the right side of justice at all times.”

And if you refuse to be on the “right side (my side) of justice at all times”? Nice business you have there. Be a shame if anything happened to it because you weren’t on the “right side of justice at all times.”

Martinez’s pleas for understanding fell on deaf ears. His restaurant has been the target of vandalism and overt threats in recent days. In response, the Hispanic community is rallying around Martinez and offering their support for his resistance.

According to a press release, members of the city’s Cuban community will meet outside the NuLu restaurant at 4 p.m. Sunday to support the immigrant-owned business, which “has been subject to vandalism and extortion in recent days.”

The release states that La Bodeguita de Mima was forced to close July 24 during a demonstration that shut down East Market Street, at which several protesters presented Martinez with the list of demands and said he “better put the letter on the door so your business is not f*cked with.”

The restaurant remained closed the next two days because “management and staff were concerned about safety,” according to the release. “30+ staff members (mostly immigrants) were unable to earn a paycheck.”

That’s what you get for not being on the “right side of justice all the time.”


Why Is Change away from homosexuality Such a Threat?

What is it that makes the very existence of ex-gays so threatening? And why is there a concerted, worldwide effort to block professional counseling for those with unwanted same-sex attractions?

Before you think I’m exaggerating, consider these following examples.

In England, Barclays Bank announced it was closing the account of a Christian charity after protest from LGBTQ activists. The charity, Core Issues Trust (CIT), was accused of practicing “conversion therapy.”

On the social media front, it is now reported that, “Facebook and its photo platform Instagram are banning any content advertising or promoting treatment to overcome unwanted same-sex attraction.”

According to Facebook spokeswoman Stephanie Otway, “This is a global policy. The policy is still under development, but for now it will be applied to content that promotes conversion therapy when we become aware of it.”

Ex-gay colleagues have already informed me that their content is being removed from Facebook and their pages are being shut down, simply for stating that change is possible.

Last year, Amazon stopped selling books by respected therapists like Dr. Joseph Nicolosi as part of their ban on “conversion therapy” books. This year, Amazon refused to allow Regnery Books, one of the largest conservative publishers, to buy ads for their new book by journalist Abigail Shrier, Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters.

But there’s more.

As posted on the official website of the Office of the High Commissioner of the United Nations Human Rights organization, a UN expert is calling for a global ban on so-called “conversion therapy.”

And what, exactly, is this dangerous therapy?

According to Victor Madrigal-Borloz, “the Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity . . . conversion is attempted through beatings, rape, electrocution, forced medication, isolation and confinement, forced nudity, verbal offense and humiliation and other acts of physical, psychological, and sexual abuse.”

This sounds pretty horrible, right? No wonder the Christian charity in England is having its bank account shut down. No wonder Facebook and Instagram are blocking posts advocating these torturous practices. No wonder the UN is calling for a ban.

There’s only one problem.

This is a myth. It is a creation of the left. It is a bogeyman, manufactured out of thin air, meant to discredit fine organizations and ministries which simply say, “If you are unhappy with your same-sex attractions or gender-identity confusion, we’re here to talk with you and help.”

That’s it.

Nothing is forced or coerced. No one is being beaten. Or raped. Or electrocuted. Or isolated. Or confined. Or forced to take medication. Or stripped naked. Or subjected to “verbal offense and humiliation and other acts of physical, psychological, and sexual abuse.” God forbid!

There is not a person I know on the planet who would affirm such abusive practices, and if they do exist, they have no connection at all to organizations like CIT and others.

Instead, professional counselors and ministry leaders, many of them ex-gay or ex-trans themselves, are offering prayer, support, and talk therapy to those who request it.

That’s it.

You say, “But I’ve heard horror stories of kids taken against their own will and isolated and tortured in an attempt to drive the gay out of them. It is child abuse of the worst kind.”

Actually, some of these stories are not true at all. More importantly, there is not a single, recognized ex-gay ministry or organization in the world that would sanction any of the horrific practices listed here.

Why, then, should they be banned by the UN, by social media, by Amazon, and by other countries when all they do is offer counseling and prayer to those who request? What is their crime?

You say, “I have gay and trans friends who told me how damaging it was to receive this kind of counseling and prayer when they were adults. And it made them feel like there was something wrong with being gay or trans when, in fact, this is how God made them.”

Well, it could be they weren’t helped at all. Perhaps they were actually hurt. The same can be said for countless people who tried everything from new diets to spiritual fads to life coaches to psychiatrists. They report negative outcomes rather than positive outcomes.

But I can also point you to countless thousands who have been helped. Who have improved the quality of their lives. Who are happier and more content. Who have resolved deep inner conflicts. Who have found gender wholeness (without surgery or lifelong hormones). Who have even seen changes in their sexual orientation.

Why don’t their stories count? And what about those people who believe that God did not make them gay or trans? Do not their beliefs or convictions count?

Really now, in today’s world, if someone wants to go to a new age healer who allegedly makes contact with UFO’s, they can do so. Or, if someone wants to go to a holistic cancer treatment center rather than get chemotherapy, that’s their choice.

Yet if someone says, “I would rather not take hormones for life and remove perfectly healthy organs in order to feel at home in my body. Instead, I would prefer finding wholeness from the inside out, and I’d like to meet with a professionally trained counselor,” they will be told that such counseling is forbidden.

This is both criminal and cruel, and people of conscience around the world need to raise their voices in support of freedom of choice. (Shall I mention here the secular therapists who believe that sexual orientation is often quite fluid?)

The Restored Hope Network has posted this Call to Action, offering many practical steps you can take. And you can do what I’ve done on social media, specifically, challenging the ban and asking for people to post their testimonies of change. (See here for a Facebook post that, thankfully, has not been taken down. Some of the testimonies are very powerful.)

As for the questions I asked at the outset of this article, the answers are simple. People who are ex-gay and ex-trans are a threat to the whole “born that way” argument, the argument that says that gay (or trans) is the new black. By undermining that, we undermine the movement.

And that’s why it is such a threat.


Australia: Ambitious new targets to improve Indigenous lives

Targets are all very well but how are they going to be met?  Nobody knows. We have only vague generalities below and it has all been tried before.  The truth is that Aborigines have been going downhill ever since the missionaries were forced out

Even the missionaries could do only so much.  Aborigines have some eerie abilities at perception and memory but they have one of the lowest average IQs in the world, and it shows.  Their educational performance is disastrous and that is fatal

Ambitious targets to improve the lives of Indigenous Australians by lifting school attendance, employment rates and university enrolments while dramatically lowering the number of children in out-of-home care and behind bars will be unveiled on Thursday.

A new national agreement on Closing the Gap, which sets 16 new national socio-economic targets to track progress, will put community-controlled Indigenous organisations at the centre of efforts to redress inequality between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and the broader community.

The plan will commit federal, state and local governments and a coalition of 50 peak Indigenous organisations to a significant reduction in suicides as well as a pledge to reduce the Indigenous adult incarceration rate by at least 15 per cent among adults and at least 30 per cent among juveniles by 2031. It will also aim to dramatically reduce the number of Indigenous children in out-of-home care in the next decade.

After more than 10 years of failings in many of the key targets, new independent and state-based reporting of results will be put in place. This will include the Productivity Commission undertaking an independent three-yearly review on progress, complemented by an independent Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander-led review.

The agreement has been written in a collaborative process overseen by Indigenous Australians Minister Ken Wyatt and Pat Turner, convener of a coalition of 50 peak Indigenous organisations.

Mr Wyatt said the historic plan would for the first time bring shared responsibility and joint accountability to efforts by governments, councils and communities to improve the lives of Indigenous Australians.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says the results are not good enough as he releases the Closing the Gap report vowing to make changes.

He said the new agreement represented a "quantum shift" from a decade of failings.

"Every word has been considered and debated, every target has been considered and debated," Mr Wyatt said. "We know that the best outcomes are achieved when Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians are equal partners with governments and when they have a direct say in how we are going to be successful in driving the desired outcomes."

The annual Closing the Gap report, released in February, showed a staggering failure to meet targets in improving levels of Indigenous childhood mortality, life expectancy, school attendance and employment.

The new agreement will focus on four priority reforms to change how governments work with Indigenous Australians, establishing formal partnerships and shared decision making, transforming government agencies, and improving and sharing access to data and information to enable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to make informed decisions.

Ms Turner said it would be the first time First Nations people would share decision making with governments on Closing the Gap.

"Our country has unforgivable gaps in the life outcomes of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and other Australians in all aspects of life including mortality, chronic disease, disability rates, housing security, education, employment and wealth," she said.

"These gaps have burdened our people and caused the erosion of health and well-being of generations of First Nations Australians. The national agreement represents a turning point in our country's efforts to close these gaps."

Federal and state governments agreed on draft targets in December 2018 for education, economic development and health as well as planning a new goal to reduce Indigenous incarceration within a decade.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the agreement was a new chapter. "The gaps we are now seeking to close are the gaps that have now been defined by the representatives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. This is as it should be," Mr Morrison said. "By focusing our efforts on these more specific, practical and shared objectives we can expect to make much greater progress.



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

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

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

3 August, 2020 

Black Lives Matter: All the ‘racist’ names being changed

So much has happened, it can be hard to keep track of all the casualties of the Great Racism Purge of 2020. Here are some of the ones we’ve lost.

Nestle moves to rename Red Skins and Chicos lollies

Multiple brands have announced their decision to rebrand or rename products with "racist" or "offensive" packaging and labelling.
Remember the good old days, aka everything before 2020, when the biggest racism controversy was Kim Kardashian being accused of “cultural appropriation” for naming her shapewear range “Kimono”?
In the wake of the global Black Lives Matter riots and protests sparked by the killing of George Floyd, pressure to rename, redesign or otherwise tear down supposedly “offensive” reminders of the past have gone into overdrive.
So much has happened in the space of a few months, it can be hard to keep track of all the casualties.
Below is an incomplete list from what future generations will look back on as The Year We Finally Ended Racism by Changing Syrup Bottles.
Lady Antebellum’s Dave Haywood, Hillary Scott and Charles Kelley. Picture: Darren England
Lady Antebellum’s Dave Haywood, Hillary Scott and Charles Kelley. Picture: Darren EnglandSource:News Corp Australia
On June 11, Grammy-winning country trio Lady Antebellum announced they were dropping the second half of their name, saying they had originally chosen it to reflect the southern music genres that had influenced them but that they “did not take into account the associations that weigh down this word referring to the period of history before the Civil War, which includes slavery”.
Awkwardly, their new name, Lady A, was already taken by African American blues singer Anita White – who they are now suing to enforce their trademark.
“You’re saying that you are an ally, but you are not,” Ms White told CNN, speaking to the group. “You basically want to bully me and take the name and think that that’s OK. That’s not an ally.”
Colonial Brewing Co has denied any ‘malice’ but will review its name. Picture: Chris Eastman
Colonial Brewing Co has denied any ‘malice’ but will review its name. Picture: Chris EastmanSource:News Corp Australia
On June 16, craft beer brand Colonial Brewing Co, based in the Margaret River region of Western Australia, said it would consider changing its name following a long campaign by Melbourne journalist Shaad D’Souza, who accused the company of profiting by “creating nostalgia for a time when First Nations people were killed en masse”.
Managing director Lawrence Dowd said the original owners chose the name because they were “colonising” a famous wine region as a beer brewer and that there wasn’t any “malice” intended.
Kellogg’s has – so far – refused to budge on the Coco Pops monkey.
Kellogg’s has – so far – refused to budge on the Coco Pops monkey.Source:Supplied
Also on June 16, disgraced former UK Labour MP Fiona Onasanya launched an attack on Coco Pops, claiming its cartoon monkey mascot was racist and questioning why Rice Krispies “have three white boys representing the brand”.
Kellogg’s has – so far – not caved in, saying the monkey was “created in the 1980s to highlight the playful personality of the brand” and pointing out a “range of characters that we show on our cereal boxes, including tigers, giraffes, crocodiles, elves and a narwhal”.
We do not tolerate discrimination and believe that people of all races, genders, backgrounds, sexual orientation, religions, capabilities and beliefs should be treated with the utmost dignity and respect,” a statement from the company said.
Aunt Jemima was ‘based on a racial stereotype’. Picture: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images/AFP
Aunt Jemima was ‘based on a racial stereotype’. Picture: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images/AFPSource:AFP
On June 17, PepsiCo-owned US food manufacturer Quaker Oats said it was changing the name and image of its Aunt Jemima pancake mix and syrup range.
The brand, founded in 1889, features an African American woman in the vein of the “mammy” caricature critics say presents a romanticised image of slavery.
“We recognise Aunt Jemima’s origins are based on a racial stereotype,” Quaker Foods executive Kristin Kroepfl said in a statement.
Descendants of Lillian Richard, who portrayed Aunt Jemima for years, said they and families of other women who brought the character to life were not consulted.
“Erasing my Aunt Lillian Richard would erase a part of history,” her niece Vera Harris told NPR.
Mars is also considering a change to its Uncle Ben’s rice brand. Picture: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images/AFP
Mars is also considering a change to its Uncle Ben’s rice brand. Picture: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images/AFPSource:AFP
Hours later on June 17, Mars announced it would be making changes to its Uncle Ben’s rice brand, which features an elderly African American man in a bow tie.
According to the blurb on the Mars website, the brand’s namesake was a renowned Texas rice grower, while Chicago waiter Frank Brown sat for the portrait.
“As a global brand, we know we have a responsibility to take a stand in helping to put an end to racial bias and injustices,” Mars said in a statement.
“(We) recognise that now is the right time to evolve the Uncle Ben’s brand, including its visual brand identity, which we will do. We don’t yet know what the exact changes or timing will be, but we are evaluating all possibilities.”
Mrs Butterworth’s will also be reviewed. Picture: Ron Adar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
Mrs Butterworth’s will also be reviewed. Picture: Ron Adar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
Also on June 17, Chicago-based Conagra Brands announced it had begun a “complete brand and packaging review” of Mrs Butterworth’s, including its syrup bottle in the shape of a woman.
“The Mrs Butterworth’s brand, including its syrup packaging, is intended to evoke the images of a loving grandmother,” the company said in a statement.
“We stand in solidarity with our black and brown communities and we can see that our packaging may be interpreted in a way that is wholly inconsistent with our values. We understand that our actions help play an important role in eliminating racial bias.”
Cream of Wheat’s logo dates back to 1893. Picture: Stilfehler/Wikimedia Commons
Cream of Wheat’s logo dates back to 1893. Picture: Stilfehler/Wikimedia CommonsSource:Supplied
Finally on June 17, B&G foods jumped on board by announcing a review of its Cream of Wheat packaging, which features an African American chef.
The character was first introduced in 1893 as “Rastus” – a generic name often considered offensive.
“We understand there are concerns regarding the Chef image, and we are committed to evaluating our packaging and will proactively take steps to ensure that we and our brands do not inadvertently contribute to systemic racism,” the company said in a statement.
“B&G Foods unequivocally stands against prejudice and injustice of any kind.”
The Chinese name still means ‘black person toothpaste’. Picture: Zhang Peng/LightRocket via Getty Images
The Chinese name still means ‘black person toothpaste’. Picture: Zhang Peng/LightRocket via Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
On June 18, Colgate announced it was reviewing Darlie, a popular Chinese toothpaste brand sold across Asia that was originally called Darkie and featured a man in blackface on the packaging.
Colgate purchased 50 per cent of the brand’s Hong Kong-based maker Hawley & Hazel in 1985 before changing the name and logo to a man in a top hat in 1989.
“For more than 35 years, we have been working together to evolve the brand, including substantial changes to the name, logo and packaging,” a Colgate spokesman told Reuters.
“We are currently working with our partner to review and further evolve all aspects of the brand, including the brand name.”
The brand’s current name in Chinese still translates as “black person toothpaste”.
Goodbye, Eskimo Pie. Picture: Sandra Cohen-Rose and Colin Rose/Wikimedia Commons
Goodbye, Eskimo Pie. Picture: Sandra Cohen-Rose and Colin Rose/Wikimedia CommonsSource:Supplied
On June 20, ice cream company Dreyer’s said it would be retiring the “inappropriate” Eskimo Pie name.
The company plans to have a new name for the century-old vanilla-and-chocolate bar by the end of the year, and will discontinue the Eskimo character – a small, dark-haired child wearing a fur-lined hood.
“We have been reviewing our Eskimo Pie business for some time and will be changing the brand name and marketing,” Dreyer’s head of marketing Elizabell Marquez told Rolling Stone.
“We are committed to being a part of the solution on racial equality, and recognise the term is derogatory. This move is part of a larger review to ensure our company and brands reflect our people values.”
Similarly, the Canadian Football League’s Edmonton Eskimos later announced they would be changing their name.
The names are ‘out of step’ with Nestle’s values. Picture: Matt Blyth/Getty Images
The names are ‘out of step’ with Nestle’s values. Picture: Matt Blyth/Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
On June 23, global food giant Nestle announced it was renaming its Red Skins and Chicos lollies sold in Australia as they were now “out of step” with the company’s values – critics say the terms are racially insensitive to Native Americans and Latin Americans.
The Red Skins packaging had already been changed a few years earlier from a Native American in a headdress to a plain red-and-purple wrapper.
In the same review of its 25,000 products, Nestle said it would rename and redesign Colombian chocolate brand Beso de Negra, which translates as “kiss from a black woman”.
The creams are popular in Asia. Picture: Nasir Kachroo/NurPhoto via Getty Images
The creams are popular in Asia. Picture: Nasir Kachroo/NurPhoto via Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
On June 25, Unilever announced it would rename its Fair & Lovely skin-lightening creams sold across Asia, after criticism the products promoted negative stereotypes of dark skin tones, the BBC reported.
Unilever also agreed to remove references to “whitening” or “lightening” on the products.
“This product has built upon, perpetuated and benefited from internalised racism and promotes anti-blackness sentiments,” one petition to the global consumer goods company said.
Unilever president of beauty and personal care Sunny Jain said the company recognised “that the use of the words ‘fair’, ‘white’ and ‘light’ suggest a singular ideal of beauty that we don’t think is right, and we want to address this”.
The artists formerly known as the Dixie Chicks. Picture: Robin Harper
The artists formerly known as the Dixie Chicks. Picture: Robin HarperSource:Supplied
On June 25, American country trio the Dixie Chicks announced they were changing their name to the Chicks, dropping the word “Dixie” after 31 years.
Dixie refers to the Mason-Dixon line, the informal border between the free Northern states and the slave-owning Southern states of the Confederacy.
“We were literally teenagers when we picked that stupid name,” band member Martie Maguire told Variety.
Natalie Maines said they wanted to change it “years and years and years ago”.
“I just wanted to separate myself from people that wave that Dixie flag,” she said.
The widely used word is also being scrubbed from the oldest brewery in New Orleans, Dixie Brewery, and possibly from Utah’s Dixie State University – to name just a few.
The Colston Arms pub in Bristol, UK. Picture: Google
The Colston Arms pub in Bristol, UK. Picture: GoogleSource:Supplied
On July 1, a UK pub named after 17th century slave trader Edward Colston temporarily changed its name to “‘Ye Olde Pubby McDrunkface” while a replacement was sought.
The Colston Arms in Bristol was one of many places in the city ditching the name after Black Lives Matter rioters tore down Colston’s statue and dumped it in the harbour on June 7.
At the same time, Metro reported that another historic venue, a 404-year-old pub in Kent called The Black Boy, was rebranding as The Restoration.
Another pub in Nottinghamshire with the same name had earlier removed its sign amid fears it would be targeted by protesters.
The iconic Kimberley ranges have been renamed. Picture: Supplied
The iconic Kimberley ranges have been renamed. Picture: SuppliedSource:Supplied
On July 3, the Western Australian government renamed the King Leopold Ranges in the Kimberley region to the Wunaamin-Miliwundi Ranges, combining two traditional Aboriginal names for the 500km stretch of iconic hills.
Explorer Alexander Forrest originally named the hills after King Leopold II of Belgium in 1879, “for the great interest taken by His Majesty in exploration”, despite the foreign monarch having no connection to Australia.
Leopold II was responsible for an estimated 10 to 15 million deaths during his brutal rule of the Congo Free State from 1885 to 1908.
“I’m delighted we’ve finally got around to removing the name of someone history recognises as a tyrant, who massacred a lot of African people and had no connection to Western Australia whatsoever,” WA’s Aboriginal Affairs Minister Ben Wyatt told the ABC.
Trader Joe’s backflipped on renaming ‘racist’ product lines. Picture: Supplied
Trader Joe’s backflipped on renaming ‘racist’ product lines. Picture: SuppliedSource:istock
On July 17, US grocery store chain Trader Joe’s suggested it would review some of its ethnic product ranges sold under names like Trader Giotto’sTrader Jose’s and Trader Ming’s, after a petition claimed the branding “exoticises other cultures – it presents ‘Joe’ as the default ’normal’ and the other characters falling outside of it”.
Just four days later the company backflipped, however, issuing a new statement describing earlier reports as incorrect and stressing “we disagree that any of these labels are racist”.
“We do not make decisions based on petitions,” the statement said.
“We thought then (decades ago) – and still do – that this naming of products could be fun and show appreciation for other cultures.”
The Captain Cook Hotel has dropped the ‘Cook’. Picture: Dylan Robinson
The Captain Cook Hotel has dropped the ‘Cook’. Picture: Dylan RobinsonSource:News Corp Australia
On July 23, Sydney’s iconic Captain Cook Hotel in Paddington officially changed its name to The Captain Paddington, sparking outrage on social media and talkback radio – but the owners insisted the name change had nothing to do with caving into political correctness.
“This infuriates me,” Sky News host Rowan Dean told 2GB’s Ben Fordham, saying he “smells wokeness” behind the decision.
In a statement on Facebook, the new owners – who took over in January after the business was placed into administration last year – said the decision to rebrand “was a collaborative one with absolutely no motivation drawn from the political discussion surrounding the subject”.
“We assumed that people would still associate The Captain with Captain Cook,” they wrote. “We were simply keen to refresh this space with a new catch phrase as the new owners.”
Dr Stephen Hagan has finally prevailed in his campaign to rename Coon cheese. Picture: Lenn Campbell
Dr Stephen Hagan has finally prevailed in his campaign to rename Coon cheese. Picture: Lenn CampbellSource:News Corp Australia
On July 24, the owners of Coon cheese agreed to “retire” the brand – originally named for its founder, Edward William Coon – after complaints from an Aboriginal activist that it was “racist”.
Saputo Dairy Australia acknowledged that many consumers “cherish the brand and recognise the origin”, but said after “thorough consideration” of the “sensitive situation” it had decided to change the name.
“At this time, we are working to develop a new brand name that will honour the brand affinity felt by our valued consumers while aligning with current attitudes and perspectives,” Saputo chief executive Lino Saputo Jr said.
The football team that must not be named. Picture: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP
The football team that must not be named. Picture: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFPSource:AFP
On July 24, the Washington Redskins NFL team announced that it would adopt Washington Football Team as its interim name for the 2020 season, prompting widespread derision.
“To date, we have been pleased to see so many people putting forward their vision of what the new name and design should be on their social media channels and we look forward to including their feedback as this process progresses,” it said in a statement.
The team had announced earlier in the month that it would drop the Redskins name and logo after 87 years.
The same day, baseball team the Cleveland Indians said it would consult with Native American leaders “to better understand their perspectives”.
Ice hockey team the Chicago Blackhawks had earlier refused to change its name.
Blacks Camp will soon be no more. Picture: Google
Blacks Camp will soon be no more. Picture: GoogleSource:Supplied
On July 28, councillors in Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula indicated they would be dropping the “offensive” name Blacks Camp from a number of locations including a street, a reserve and a kindergarten, after being told it likely stemmed from “some knowledge of the habitation of this area by Aboriginal people”, according to a report from the shire’s head of governance and legal Pam Vercoe.
“The name Blacks Camp is a derogatory term that the shire has been advised is offensive to the traditional custodians of the Mornington Peninsula, the Bunurong Land Council and People of Aboriginal heritage,” Ms Vercoe said in the report, according to the Mornington Peninsula News.



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

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

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

` ************************************

2 August, 2020 

Covid-19 is not an equal opportunities disease

Why are infection rates soaring? I think we need some honesty in this debate: some plain speaking from ministers, doctors and scientists about the genetic and lifestyle risks that make some communities more vulnerable, together with a renewed effort to better target public health measures by officials who may fear they will be accused of stigmatising certain groups if they do so.

Let’s look at the statistics: Compared to the national average of 7.2 cases per 100,000 people, the rate in Blackburn, for example, has climbed to 85.3 cases for every 100,000, while in Oldham it stands at 53.1 and Bradford 44.9.

In Leicester, a partial lockdown had to be reintroduced last month after evidence of a resurgence in the virus there.

Things have improved, but even with the return of these tough rules, Leicester — one of the most diverse cities in England — still has an infection rate of 57.7 cases per 100,000 people today, more than eight times the national average.

This disparity reflects a vital truth that too many figures in authority do not want to face because of politically correct scruples and fears about accusations of prejudice.

The fact is that conurbations like Leicester, Greater Manchester and West Yorkshire have been badly hit by the pandemic because their large minority ethnic populations are more susceptible than white populations.

We might like to strive for equality in our modern, multi-racial British society, but I am afraid Covid-19 is not an ‘equal-opportunities’ disease.

Its impact is uneven, but it is hitting South Asians particularly hard.

One survey of 35,000 patients showed that South Asians are 20 per cent more likely to die in hospital than white people, while another showed ethnic minorities are four times more likely to test positive for Covid-19 than white people.

Hiding from that reality does no one any favours, least of all the most vulnerable.

Ignoring dangers is always counter-productive, as I know from my own experience as the Crown Prosecutor for North West England, when I had to battle against the institutionalised determination of the police, the media and local authorities to cover-up of the abuse of white girls by predatory, mainly South Asian, gangs in my locality.

It was a reluctance bred of a desire not to undermine the narrative of multi-cultural success, but, by weakening the integrity of the justice system, it succeeded only in harming both the victims and the Asian communities.

The same misplaced racial sensitivities have inhibited the fight against knife crime, county-line drug gangs, and brutal, misogynistic practices like female genital mutilation.

The advent of coronavirus is no time for squeamishness or hesitation. If we are to counter this brutal scourge, we must deal in the facts, not wishful thinking.

The infection rates among South Asians should be a call to action, not a cue for concealment.


That's Called Terrorism, Children: Seattle Police Chief Reveals Contents of Van Impounded From Weekend Riot

I mean, this should come as no shock to anyone following the leftist mayhem engulfing the Left Coast. Seattle, Portland, California are seeing the riots continue and getting more violent. It’s no longer about the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis last May that sparked the latest round of Black Lives Matter activism and political correctness policing. Even then, most of those demonstrations devolved into rioting that spread throughout the country for days.

What we’re seeing now weeks after Floyd is not about racial justice or police brutality. It’s about revolution. These are ardent Marxists trying to destroy what they can in order to fulfill whatever warped agenda they want to be enacted here. And yes, federal agents have a right to respond. Federal agents have a lawful obligation to enforce law and order and protect federal buildings. That’s literally in their mandate. The entire country is their jurisdiction. Deal with it, liberals. Oh, and it’s very rich that they’ve discovered what they think is federalism when they’re told the adults will be coming in to clean up their mess, huh?

The new liberal meltdown is over the deployment of federal agents into these crime-ridden hell holes run by Democrats. In Portland, they’re trying to set the federal courthouse on fire, rioters are throwing IEDs at law enforcement, and they’ve blinded federal officers with lasers, some of whom may not regain their vision. In Seattle, Police Chief Carmen Best ripped into the city council for creating an environment that makes officers vulnerable to harm with their anti-police sentiment, like the push to ban the use of tear gas and flashbangs.

Now, Chief Best has revealed the contents of a van impounded during the riots last Saturday, which include—shocker—bombs, spiked strips, bear spray, and lasers. Best said that these items were being handed out to these left-wing vermin from the van. This isn’t protesting. It’s terrorism—and more federal agents should be deployed as a result. This mayhem has gone on for weeks. It’s time to put the mob down.


Our Summer of Cultural Suicide

Cultural suicide used to be a popular diagnosis of why things suddenly just quit.

Historians such as Oswald Spengler and Arnold Toynbee cited social cannibalism to explain why once-successful states, institutions, and cultures simply died off.

Their common explanation was that the arrogance of success ensures lethal consequences. Once elites became pampered and arrogant, they feel exempt from their ancestors' respect for moral and spiritual laws like thrift, moderation, and transcendence.

Take professional sports. Over the last century, professional football, basketball and baseball were racially integrated and adopted a uniform code of patriotic observance. The three leagues offered fans a pleasant respite from daily barroom politics. As a result, by the 21st century, the NFL, NBA and MLB had become global multibillion-dollar enterprises.

Then hubris ensued.

The owners, coaches and players weren't always racially diverse. But that inconvenient truth did not stop the leagues from hectoring their fans about social activism — even as they no longer honored common patriotic rituals.

All three leagues have suffered terribly during the viral lockdown, as American life mysteriously went on without them. And they have almost ensured that they won't fully recover when the quarantine ends. Many of their often-pampered multimillionaire players refuse to honor the national anthem. In the NFL they now will broadcast their politics on their helmets. They will virtue-signal their moral superiority to increasingly turned-off fans, as if to ensure that their sources of support flee.

Lots of American universities became virtual global brands in the 21st century. Sky-high tuition, rich foreign students, guaranteed student loans, and Club Med-like facilities convinced administrators and faculty that higher education was sacrosanct. The universities preached that every successful American had to have a bachelor's degree, as if the higher-education monopoly deserved guaranteed customers.

But soon, $1.6 trillion in aggregate student-loan debt, lightweight and trendy curricula, ideological hectoring, administrative bloat, reduced teaching loads, poor placement of graduates, and the suspension of the Bill of Rights on campus began turning off both students and the public.

If students can Zoom or Skype their classes from home this fall, why pay $70,000 a year for the campus "experience"?

Supposedly woke and informed rioters this summer incoherently toppled or damaged the statues of everyone from Robert E. Lee and Ulysses S. Grant to Frederick Douglass and Miguel de Cervantes. So the public might begin to wonder how the nation's multitrillion-dollar investment in higher education actually served the country.

Soon, popular fury will beget more dangerous questions for American universities. Maybe the country should subsidize the training of more essential electricians, plumbers, contractors, and masons instead of unemployable environmental and ethnic studies majors.

If a university president wanted to devise a plan for how to destroy his university, he could not have come up with a better one than what has happened on campus in recent decades.

Hollywood should have been ecstatic over 21st-century globalization, which should have made filmmakers and stars even richer and more popular, with a potential audience of more than seven billion. But quarantine has shut down most theaters.

Amazon, Netflix and Facebook, along with cable TV, have sent theater revenues diving for years. Silicon Valley can create filmmakers who have no need to get near Southern California.

In response, Hollywood counts on bringing comic books to the big screen, or on making poor remakes of old classics. When directors try to make a serious new movie, the result is often the monotony and boredom of thinly veiled woke propaganda.

Viewers can take only so many heroic green crusaders, diverse superhumans, and beautiful feminists — and only so many villainous cardboard-cutout Russian oligarchs, toothless and twangy Southern Neanderthals, and corporate yes-men.

The hypocrisy gets worse when the Chinese government often adjudicates movie content as the price of entering a Chinese market with more than a billion potential customers.

But viewers do seek out theaters for more lectures from beautiful multimillionaires on their racist, sexist, homophobic country.

Professional sports, universities, and the motion picture industry all know that what they are doing is bad for business. But they still believe they are rich and powerful, and thus invulnerable. They also are ignorant of history and cannot be persuaded that they are destroying themselves.

At this late date, all that matters is that the country itself learns from these suicidal examples and heals itself. If the U.S. is not to become an extinct Easter Island, it must rediscover a respect for its past, honor for the dead who gave us so much, the desire to invest rather than spend, and a need for some sense of transcendence.

If we do not believe that what we do today has consequences for our children after we are gone, there are ancient existential forces in the world that will intervene.

And it won't be nice.


Insane: Seattle Moves to Abolish Entire Police Force

Well, it may be time to deploy the military to Seattle after all because what local lawmakers are doing is nothing short of allowing the city to be engulfed in violence and anarchy. They’re moving to abolish the police. It’s not defunding. It’s a total dissolution. Non-profit programs and “community-led activities” will replace policing. Why? Well, according to the resolution, the Seattle Police Department perpetuates racism and violence. Oh, yes, and it’s a vehicle of white supremacy. It's typical 'woke' nonsense, and it's a cancer that's killing America.

Also, did you catch that backdoor Marxism with the re-appropriation of land? This is basically making CHOP, the zone that was seized by armed leftists earlier this summer, into citywide policy. Social workers cannot bring law and order, only police officers can do that. You know this. The Emerald City is sprinting further down the path of total anarchy.

Recently, Police Chief Carmen Best revealed a van impounded during last weekend’s riots that contained a variety of weapons including bombs. She said it’s highly probable that these weapons were being distributed to rioters from the van. Best also ripped into the council for making her officers less safe with their nonsensical motions, like banning crowd control munitions such as flashbangs and tear gas.

The ‘woke’ council is gladly handing the city over to Marxist terrorists because ‘orange man…bad.’ They’re mad that the federal government can and should deploy federal agents in cities that are crime-ridden hell holes—all of them run by Democrats. These people cannot govern. This resolution is an endorsement of mob violence and rule. Do they really want the military on the streets after the Insurrection Act is invoked? We can make that happen. And it should happen if Seattle and other places continue to dabble in this idiocy of defunding the police, which we all know means total abolishment.

They’re not shy about their intentions on that front either. This is the Left in 2020. They’re unhinged, violent, intolerant, and prone to throw tantrums when they don’t get what they want. They didn’t want Trump to win the 2016 election, so they’re trashing their communities. These are children we’re dealing with, and it’s about time we give them the belt. Or, in this case, the baton.



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

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

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

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-- Geert Wilders

The most beautiful woman in the world? I think she was. Yes: It's Agnetha Fältskog

A beautiful baby is king -- with blue eyes, blond hair and white skin. How incorrect can you get?

Kristina Pimenova, said to be the most beautiful girl in the world. Note blue eyes and blonde hair

Enough said

Islamic terrorism isn’t a perversion of Islam. It’s the implementation of Islam. It is not a religion of the persecuted, but the persecutors. Its theology is violent supremacism.

There really is an actress named Donna Air. She seems a pleasant enough woman, though

What feminism has wrought:

There's actually some wisdom there. The dreamy lady says she is holding out for someone who meets her standards. The other lady reasonably replies "There's nobody there". Standards can be unrealistically high and feminists have laboured mightily to make them so

Some bright spark occasionally decides that Leftism is feminine and conservatism is masculine. That totally misses the point. If true, how come the vote in American presidential elections usually shows something close to a 50/50 split between men and women? And in the 2016 Presidential election, Trump won 53 percent of white women, despite allegations focused on his past treatment of some women.

Political correctness is Fascism pretending to be manners

Political Correctness is as big a threat to free speech as Communism and Fascism. All 3 were/are socialist.

The problem with minorities is not race but culture. For instance, many American black males fit in well with the majority culture. They go to college, work legally for their living, marry and support the mother of their children, go to church, abstain from crime and are considerate towards others. Who could reasonably object to such people? It is people who subscribe to minority cultures -- black, Latino or Muslim -- who can give rise to concern. If antisocial attitudes and/or behaviour become pervasive among a group, however, policies may reasonably devised to deal with that group as a whole

Black lives DON'T matter -- to other blacks. The leading cause of death among young black males is attack by other young black males

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. Leftist motivations are fundamentally Fascist. They want to "fundamentally transform" the lives of their fellow citizens, which is as authoritarian as you can get. We saw where it led in Russia and China. The "compassion" that Leftists parade is just a cloak for their ghastly real motivations

Occasionally I put up on this blog complaints about the privileged position of homosexuals in today's world. I look forward to the day when the pendulum swings back and homosexuals are treated as equals before the law. To a simple Leftist mind, that makes me "homophobic", even though I have no fear of any kind of homosexuals.

But I thought it might be useful for me to point out a few things. For a start, I am not unwise enough to say that some of my best friends are homosexual. None are, in fact. Though there are two homosexuals in my normal social circle whom I get on well with and whom I think well of.

Of possible relevance: My late sister was a homosexual; I loved Liberace's sense of humour and I thought that Robert Helpmann was marvellous as Don Quixote in the Nureyev ballet of that name.

Bible references on homosexuality: Jude 1:7; 1 Timothy 1:8-11; Mark 10:6-9; 1 Corinthians 6: 9-11; 1 Corinthians 7:2; Leviticus 18:32; Leviticus 20:13

I record on this blog many examples of negligent, inefficient and reprehensible behaviour on the part of British police. After 13 years of Labour party rule they have become highly politicized, with values that reflect the demands made on them by the political Left rather than than what the community expects of them. They have become lazy and cowardly and avoid dealing with real crime wherever possible -- preferring instead to harass normal decent people for minor infractions -- particularly offences against political correctness. They are an excellent example of the destruction that can be brought about by Leftist meddling.

I also record on this blog much social worker evil -- particularly British social worker evil. The evil is neither negligent nor random. It follows exactly the pattern you would expect from the Marxist-oriented indoctrination they get in social work school -- where the middle class is seen as the enemy and the underclass is seen as virtuous. So social workers are lightning fast to take children away from normal decent parents on the basis of of minor or imaginary infractions while turning a blind eye to gross child abuse by the underclass

Racial differences in temperament: Chinese are more passive even as little babies

The genetics of crime: I have been pointing out for some time the evidence that there is a substantial genetic element in criminality. Some people are born bad. See here, here, here, here (DOI: 10.1111/jcpp.12581) and here, for instance"

Gender is a property of words, not of people. Using it otherwise is just another politically correct distortion -- though not as pernicious as calling racial discrimination "Affirmative action"

Postmodernism is fundamentally frivolous. Postmodernists routinely condemn racism and intolerance as wrong but then say that there is no such thing as right and wrong. They are clearly not being serious. Either they do not really believe in moral nihilism or they believe that racism cannot be condemned!

Postmodernism is in fact just a tantrum. Post-Soviet reality in particular suits Leftists so badly that their response is to deny that reality exists. That they can be so dishonest, however, simply shows how psychopathic they are.

So why do Leftists say "There is no such thing as right and wrong" when backed into a rhetorical corner? They say it because that is the predominant conclusion of analytic philosophers. And, as Keynes said: "Madmen in authority, who hear voices in the air, are distilling their frenzy from some academic scribbler of a few years back”

Children are the best thing in life. See also here.

Juergen Habermas, a veteran leftist German philosopher stunned his admirers not long ago by proclaiming, "Christianity, and nothing else, is the ultimate foundation of liberty, conscience, human rights, and democracy, the benchmarks of Western civilization. To this day, we have no other options [than Christianity]. We continue to nourish ourselves from this source. Everything else is postmodern chatter."

Consider two "jokes" below:

Q. "Why are Leftists always standing up for blacks and homosexuals?

A. Because for all three groups their only God is their penis"

Pretty offensive, right? So consider this one:

Q. "Why are evangelical Christians like the Taliban?

A. They are both religious fundamentalists"

The latter "joke" is not a joke at all, of course. It is a comparison routinely touted by Leftists. Both "jokes" are greatly offensive and unfair to the parties targeted but one gets a pass without question while the other would bring great wrath on the head of anyone uttering it. Why? Because political correctness is in fact just Leftist bigotry. Bigotry is unfairly favouring one or more groups of people over others -- usually justified as "truth".

One of my more amusing memories is from the time when the Soviet Union still existed and I was teaching sociology in a major Australian university. On one memorable occasion, we had a representative of the Soviet Womens' organization visit us -- a stout and heavily made-up lady of mature years. When she was ushered into our conference room, she was greeted with something like adulation by the local Marxists. In question time after her talk, however, someone asked her how homosexuals were treated in the USSR. She replied: "We don't have any. That was before the revolution". The consternation and confusion that produced among my Leftist colleagues was hilarious to behold and still lives vividly in my memory. The more things change, the more they remain the same, however. In Sept. 2007 President Ahmadinejad told Columbia university that there are no homosexuals in Iran.

It is widely agreed (with mainly Lesbians dissenting) that boys need their fathers. What needs much wider recognition is that girls need their fathers too. The relationship between a "Daddy's girl" and her father is perhaps the most beautiful human relationship there is. It can help give the girl concerned inner strength for the rest of her life.

A modern feminist complains: "We are so far from “having it all” that “we barely even have a slice of the pie, which we probably baked ourselves while sobbing into the pastry at 4am”."

Patriotism does NOT in general go with hostilty towards others. See e.g. here and here and even here ("Ethnocentrism and Xenophobia: A Cross-Cultural Study" by anthropologist Elizabeth Cashdan. In Current Anthropology Vol. 42, No. 5, December 2001).

The love of bureaucracy is very Leftist and hence "correct". Who said this? "Account must be taken of every single article, every pound of grain, because what socialism implies above all is keeping account of everything". It was V.I. Lenin

"An objection I hear frequently is: ‘Why should we tolerate intolerance?’ The assumption is that tolerating views that you don’t agree with is like a gift, an act of kindness. It suggests we’re doing people a favour by tolerating their view. My argument is that tolerance is vital to us, to you and I, because it’s actually the presupposition of all our freedoms. You cannot be free in any meaningful sense unless there is a recognition that we are free to act on our beliefs, we’re free to think what we want and express ourselves freely. Unless we have that freedom, all those other freedoms that we have on paper mean nothing" -- SOURCE


Although it is a popular traditional chant, the "Kol Nidre" should be abandoned by modern Jewish congregations. It was totally understandable where it originated in the Middle Ages but is morally obnoxious in the modern world and vivid "proof" of all sorts of antisemitic stereotypes

What the Bible says about homosexuality:

"Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind; It is abomination" -- Lev. 18:22

In his great diatribe against the pagan Romans, the apostle Paul included homosexuality among their sins:

"For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature. And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.... Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them" -- Romans 1:26,27,32.

So churches that condone homosexuality are clearly post-Christian

Although I am an atheist, I have great respect for the wisdom of ancient times as collected in the Bible. And its condemnation of homosexuality makes considerable sense to me. In an era when family values are under constant assault, such a return to the basics could be helpful. Nonetheless, I approve of St. Paul's advice in the second chapter of his epistle to the Romans that it is for God to punish them, not us. In secular terms, homosexuality between consenting adults in private should not be penalized but nor should it be promoted or praised. In Christian terms, "Gay pride" is of the Devil

The homosexuals of Gibeah (Judges 19 & 20) set in train a series of events which brought down great wrath and destruction on their tribe. The tribe of Benjamin was almost wiped out when it would not disown its homosexuals. Are we seeing a related process in the woes presently being experienced by the amoral Western world? Note that there was one Western country that was not affected by the global financial crisis and subsequently had no debt problems: Australia. In September 2012 the Australian federal parliament considered a bill to implement homosexual marriage. It was rejected by a large majority -- including members from both major political parties

Religion is deeply human. The recent discoveries at Gobekli Tepe suggest that it was religion not farming that gave birth to civilization. Early civilizations were at any rate all very religious. Atheism is mainly a very modern development and is even now very much a minority opinion

"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)

I think it's not unreasonable to see Islam as the religion of the Devil. Any religion that loves death or leads to parents rejoicing when their children blow themselves up is surely of the Devil -- however you conceive of the Devil. Whether he is a man in a red suit with horns and a tail, a fallen spirit being, or simply the evil side of human nature hardly matters. In all cases Islam is clearly anti-life and only the Devil or his disciples could rejoice in that.

And there surely could be few lower forms of human behaviour than to give abuse and harm in return for help. The compassionate practices of countries with Christian traditions have led many such countries to give a new home to Muslim refugees and seekers after a better life. It's basic humanity that such kindness should attract gratitude and appreciation. But do Muslims appreciate it? They most commonly show contempt for the countries and societies concerned. That's another sign of Satanic influence.

And how's this for demonic thinking?: "Asian father whose daughter drowned in Dubai sea 'stopped lifeguards from saving her because he didn't want her touched and dishonoured by strange men'

And where Muslims tell us that they love death, the great Christian celebration is of the birth of a baby -- the monogenes theos (only begotten god) as John 1:18 describes it in the original Greek -- Christmas!

No wonder so many Muslims are hostile and angry. They have little companionship from women and not even any companionship from dogs -- which are emotionally important in most other cultures. Dogs are "unclean"

Some advice from Martin Luther: Esto peccator et pecca fortiter, sed fortius fide et gaude in christo qui victor est peccati, mortis et mundi: peccandum est quam diu sic sumus. Vita haec non est habitatio justitiae

On all my blogs, I express my view of what is important primarily by the readings that I select for posting. I do however on occasions add personal comments in italicized form at the beginning of an article.

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.

I imagine that the the RD is still sending mailouts to my 1950s address!

Germaine Greer is a stupid old Harpy who is notable only for the depth and extent of her hatreds

Even Mahatma Gandhi was profoundly unimpressed by Africans

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