Wednesday, August 21, 2019


I go into hospital later today for an operation that will require me  to spend around two days in hospital to have my recovery monitored. So I will be hors de combat until some time on the weekend.  I expect to be back to normal after that.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Brexit: Is There a British Strategy?

For the last 3 years British political news has been dominated by the interminable debate of Brexit.  It has made any reading of the British serious papers unutterably boring and I have mostly ignored it.  Now that things are at last coming to a head, however, I thought it time to put something explanatory up.  So I reproduce below a recent talk by Sean Gabb, a British libertarian and long-time keen observer of the British political scene.

He sees the whole controversy as akin to Trump's war on the "Swamp". The British swamp is just as powerful and undemocratic as the American one.  I think however that it is much less united than Sean says.  Sean would say that it IS united deep down. If Sean is right, Boris Johnson should have no difficulty leading the UK out of the EU, probably without a "deal"

The subject of my speech is whether there is a British Strategy for Brexit – that is, for leaving the European Union. There is a clear strategy, but it is not the strategy you will read about in the British media, and that is now being analysed by the governments of the other member states of the European Union. This strategy – this misunderstood strategy – can be summarised in the words of a hostile British observer. Martin Fletcher writes for The New Statesman magazine in London, and is a former Foreign Editor for The Times. His view is that the Conservative Party, and therefore, the British Government, has been captured by a group of right-wing extremists. Their intention, he says, is to leave the European Union without any Withdrawal Agreement except one written on their own terms. They care nothing for the political and economic harm such an unagreed withdrawal will have on Britain. They are deaf to the voice of reason.

This is a dangerous misunderstanding of the new British strategy. It is dangerous because even political extremists can be made to hear “the voice of reason.” You may think that, if the European Union and its member governments continue to insist on the Withdrawal Agreement negotiated with Theresa May, these people will eventually give in, just as Theresa May did. The result will then be a general election or another referendum, after which you will hear no more of Brexit. If that is what anyone in this room, or anyone following this speech, believes, let me assure him that it is very dangerous misunderstanding.

Europe: A Peripheral Issue in British Politics

Considered purely in itself, membership of the European Union has never been an important issue in British politics. The European Union is a free trade area with a customs and regulatory union. Except in terms of trade and some regulations, membership does not constrain any member state from doing what its ruling class really wants to do. The Hungarians and Poles do largely as they please in matters of immigration and what Western leftists call “human rights.” The French have never worried too much about the Maastricht Convergence Criteria in fiscal and monetary policy. The British are outside the Euro and outside the Schengen Area.

Of course, there has been a vocal opposition in Britain to membership ever since we first joined in 1973. But the number of people interested in theoretical matters of sovereignty has always been limited, and these people were generally ignored during the first twenty-five years of our membership. The gathering crisis over our membership that we can date perhaps to the election of the Blair Government in 1997 is best compared to the referred pain you see in a human body. You have a shooting pain in your left arm. You take it to a doctor. If he is any good, he will not tell you to rub cream on your arm. Instead, he will put a stethoscope to your chest. That is, I suggest, a good analogy for our debate over membership of the European Union.

Euroscepticism as Transferred Opposition

Ever since about 1997 – perhaps for some time before – the British ruling class has been engaged in a project of transformation. I will not bother to call these people bad. They believe they are supremely enlightened – so enlightened that they have the right, by whatever means they find convenient, to make us share the enlightenment. Many of my fellow countrymen, however, do not see this Transformation as enlightened in any reasonable meaning of the word. There will be the appearance of a multicultural love feast in which billionaires and Moslems and transsexuals join hands and dance. The reality will be a working and middle class destroyed by managed flows of global trade and services, and atomised and thereby made unable to resist by managed flows of migrants. The new world that many of my countrymen see waiting is one in which we look from the windows of our microscopic and rented high-rise flats, while they are driven about in bullet-proof cars, and armed police push other vehicles out of the way.

Because making our views plain on the Transformation is either illegal or unwise in Britain, we have complained instead about the European Union. That has remained an open issue, and has been used to its fullest extent. The UK Independence Party grew big by talking about the European Union, but whispering about the Transformation. At first, UKIP did well only in elections to the European Parliament, which is a body of no practical importance. Then, in the 2010 general election, UKIP won no seats, but gained enough otherwise Conservative votes to deny the Conservative Party an overall majority. Then UKIP won the 2014 European elections in Britain. By the 2015 general election, the Conservatives were frightened that UKIP would again deny them an overall majority. Therefore, David Cameron promised that a Conservative Government would offer a referendum on membership of the European Union. This promise was just enough for him to win a small overall majority. But 3.9 million people still voted UKIP, and UKIP came second in 120 constituencies.

I will pass over the mistakes that David Cameron made in the 2016 Referendum. What matters is the margin of victory for the leave side. You will have heard that the margin was small – 52-48 per cent to leave. The important truth is that around two thirds of the English voted to leave. The narrow overall margin is because of the Scottish and ethnic minority votes, and these are not important. Officially, the Referendum was about membership of the European Union. Unofficially, it was a vote of confidence in the Ruling Class and its project of Transformation, and the English voted that they had no confidence.

This is the background to the chaos that followed the Referendum. Just as for much of the population, membership of the European Union was a peripheral issue for the Ruling Class. The main agenda for this class is the Transformation that I have mentioned. The details of a customs and regulatory union are less important than control of education, the media and the criminal law. This being said, membership is useful so far as it blurs the lines of accountability. It is also an article of belief among some elements of the Ruling Class. For this reason, the verdict of the 2016 Referendum was unwelcome. It meant a diversion of effort from the main agenda. It upset various important people. The obvious solution was to give us a minimal departure that would satisfy us, but would keep in place those elements of the European Project that really are important to the Ruling Class.

Government by Conspiracy?

Here, I come to a digression on the nature of how Britain is governed. My country is not particularly democratic. At the same time, there is no cabal of evil persons directing all events and appointments from behind the scenes. This is generally not how ruling classes operate. A more realistic model can be taken from Ian Kershaw’s analysis of the National Socialist revolution in Germany. This proceeded with limited central direction. Before 1939, the leaders were concerned mostly with foreign policy, after that with fighting a big war. Instead, the revolution was decentralised. Reliable men were put in key positions and told to “work towards the Fuhrer” – that is, to act in any situation as they might imagine Hitler himself would act. The result was often administrative chaos. The benefit was that the leadership could concentrate on what it saw as the essentials, and more local knowledge could be used in the overall revolution than would otherwise have been possible.

This is largely how things work in Britain. Our own Transformation is not driven by detailed orders from the Shadowy-Ones-on-High, but by creating a bias within every useful institution to those who are broadly in favour of the Transformation. The benefit is a constrained diversity of approaches that can be presented as a genuine diversity of opinion. The disadvantage is that executive power lies in this country where it has since 1701 – that is, in the hands of the Ministers of the Crown, who are accountable to the House of Commons. If the Prime Minister turns out to be a fool, and the other ministers are too cowardly to stab him in the back, there is no easy way to remove him.

The New British Government: There to Rescue the System

I come at last to the Brexit strategy of the new Government. These people are not right-wing extremists who can eventually be forced to give in. Just like Theresa May, they see Brexit as a problem that needs to be solved. If they could wave a magic wand, they would roll back the calendar to 2016 and make sure that Remain won the Referendum. Or they would roll it back a little farther and make sure the Referendum was not called that year, or at all. But they cannot. Instead, they have to deal with the effects of leaving a political fool in charge for three years of the Brexit process.

Theresa May had one job after 2016. This was to produce the minimal departure I have mentioned. Instead, she negotiated a Withdrawal Agreement that caused a storm of outrage among the English. The details of what this Withdrawal Agreement contained are, again, unimportant. What does matter is that the Withdrawal Agreement was published in English on the European Commission website, and millions of us read its 585 pages. We may not have been that interested in the details of our membership. But the details of our “withdrawal” were unacceptable. She tried three times to force it through the House of Commons. Each time, a majority of some very trashy people were terrified to be seen supporting it. Anyone else less stupid would have tried something else. Instead, Theresa May treated us with open contempt. Whether or not we really cared about it, we had been asked if we wanted to remain in the European Union. Having voted “No!” we expected some show of respect for our clear instructions. We did not welcome a Brexit-in-Name-only.

At first, the damage was confined to the possibility of a Labour Government. Then, with the rise of the Brexit Party, the system as a whole moved towards a crisis of legitimacy. The European elections of the month before last were seen as the second Referendum the Remainers had demanded. It was won by the Leavers. The Conservative were crushed. Labour was humiliated. It seemed that a general election would, for the first time, produce a bloc in the House of Commons of Members opposed not only to the peripheral issue of the European Union, but also to the Transformation.

So Theresa May had to go, and she was replaced by Boris Johnson. His own inclination, I have no doubt, is to get a few cosmetic changes to the existing Withdrawal Agreement, and then tell us he is a diplomatic genius. His problem is that this will no longer do. Theresa May has left too much poison in those waters. Brexit must now be more meaningful than was at first projected. Last week, there was an election in Wales to fill a vacancy in the House of Commons – a bye-election. This should have been won by the Conservatives. Instead, the Brexit Party took enough Conservative votes to give the seat to one of the opposition parties – not the Labour Party, which did badly. The political arithmetic is that anything less than a No-Deal Brexit or a diplomatic triumph will mean a collapse of the Conservative vote at the next general election. And this will not mean a Labour Government, but political chaos and a crisis of legitimacy.

What the British Government Now Wants from Europe

Now to the British strategy on Brexit. The new Government must have a diplomatic triumph. That means something like the following:

We want to be outside the customs and regulatory union, and not subject to any of the European institutions. At the same time, we want privileged access to the Single Market and continued participation in those areas of the European project that suit our convenience. We are willing to pay money for this, but nothing more. In other words, we want most of the benefits of membership of the European Union and none of its costs.

You may think this a most unreasonable demand. You are probably right. But that is what the British Government has no choice but to demand. If it does not get this, it will walk away without any withdrawal agreement. Any economic consequences can be dealt with as and when they arise – and there may not be that many of these. This is not a government of right-wing extremists. But it is ready and willing to cut taxes and deregulate to offset any dislocations caused by withdrawing from nearly half a century of economic integration.

And this is not the whim of a group of right-wing extremists. It is now the settled opinion of much of the British Ruling Class. Anything less than I have said will bring on a political crisis in Britain. This is the only thing that now matters to these people. It is now a matter of saving their Transformation. Just as the Stalin Regime in 1941 suddenly revived Russian nationalism to save its Revolution, so our own rulers now will wrap themselves in a Union Flag that they have long despised, and tell us that they are our most devoted servants. Do not expect Brexit to be stopped by any coalition of Remainers. Do not hope for any “voice of reason.” The Ruling Class has made the political calculations, and it has decided that it must either give us Brexit and possibly lose the Transformation, or deny us Brexit and almost certainly lose the Transformation. This is what matters. As for Boris Johnson, all he wants is an easy life as Prime Minister. He is clever enough to know that there is only one path to getting his easy life.

A Closing Threat to Our European Partners

Following from this, do not expect Britain after leaving without any agreement to be a friendly partner. We are the only great military power in Europe. We have one of the main financial centres. We have a close relationship with the Americans, the Indians and the Chinese, among others. It we showed willing, we could have a close relationship with the Russians. For the past five hundred years, we have specialised in making life difficult for anyone who wanted a united Europe. If we choose, we can make like very difficult indeed for what is left of the European Union. This, I will add, is not some threat made by an observer without power to influence events. It is instead a prediction of how the British Ruling Class is likely to act now that its position is under domestic threat.

If you have followed me so far, I am not sure I have need of a conclusion. But I will give you one. You are not dealing with Boris Johnson and a group of right-wing extremists who have inexplicably gained supreme power in Britain, and who can be pushed out or brought to a different view of what they want. You are dealing with a British Ruling Class that no longer cares to frustrate the will of the people in the peripheral matter of the European Union. We want, I will repeat, most of the benefits of remaining in the European Union and none of the costs. The European Union has a choice. It can make the leaving process easy for us or hard for itself. For domestic reasons, the new British Government has no choice but to mean exactly what it says to the European Commission and, by extension, to the other member states of the European Union.



Australian PM takes inspiration from Donald Trump’s promise to “drain the swamp”< /b>

Scott Morrison today launched his own version of Donald Trump’s promise to “drain the swamp”, with a sharp offensive against public servants and lobbyists.

It was the prime minister’s bid to deflate the Canberra “bubble”, which he claims contains priorities alien to the concerns of most voters.

Just as the US president portrayed government insiders as part of a powerful, unaccountable elitist “swamp” that had to be emptied, Mr Morrison today accused public servants of ignoring middle Australia from the comforts of a bubble.

“The best teams are the ones where everyone knows what their job is and they do it well,” Mr Morrison said. And of course, he had a three-word slogan: “Respect and expect.”

Whether or not his attacks improve public service performance, they have four potential political benefits for Mr Morrison.

The speech today to the Institute of Public Administration was an obvious attempt to again appeal to what he calls the ‘Quiet Australians’, who he argues don’t get the attention or acclaim they deserve. It also was a deft ploy of blame-shifting, which exonerates his government. Blame those cocooned bureaucratic tribes instead.

And it cost nothing, a vital factor as the Morrison government puts all its actions through the wringer of delivering a $7 billion Budget surplus.

It’s important for the government to appear to be doing something as long as it adds to the Budget.

Plus, it might look prescient. The government expects the review of the public service by businessman David Thodey to be with the PM soon.

It too might contain an unfriendly assessment of the public service.

A bit of public service bashing isn’t an original idea, even for Donald Trump. But the federal government has been able to force its agenda through the bureaucracy or changing bureaucrats.

When John Howard took the Coalition into government in 1996, he introduced himself to the public service by sacking six department secretaries.

In 1999, the Federal Court upheld the government’s powers of hire and fire, following the dismissal of Defence Secretary Pail Barratt. The court found a prime minister did not require cause to sack a department chief.

Scott Morrison didn’t question the priorities of public servants alone. He took aim at lobbyists by saying those ordinary Australians didn’t stay in Canberra’s Hyatt hotel, or dine at the highly regarded Ottoman restaurant or relax in the Chairman’s Lounge at Canberra airport.

“There are many highly organised and well-resourced interests in our democracy,” he said in a section of his speech that read like a warning of an encroaching menace rather than just the usual circus which forms when parliament sits.

“They come to Canberra often. They are on the airwaves and the news channels. They meet regularly with politicians, advisers and departments to advance policy ideas and causes on behalf of those they represent.

“Some will be corporate interests. Some will be advocating for more welfare spending or bigger social programs. Many will be looking for a bigger slice of government resources.”

He wanted to identify a cohort of public service and private enterprise players who ignored the comfort of middle Australia while looking after their own.

It could be middle Australia doesn’t get into those plush venues Mr Morrison listed because they are packed out with MPs on travel allowances.

But Mr Morrison didn’t want to touch on that issue. In fact, he seemed to free politicians such as himself as innocents in the bubble.

“There is strong evidence that the ‘trust deficit’ that has afflicted many Western democracies over recent years stems in part from a perception that politics is very responsive to those at the top and those at the bottom, but not so much to those in the middle,” Mr Morrison said.



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

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


Monday, August 19, 2019

90% of the Racism in America Comes from the Democratic Party and the Left

This 2015 article is even more pertinent today

Roger L. Simon

Ninety percent of the racism in America today comes from the Democratic Party and the Left.  They live off it and exploit it.  It is unconscionable to the degree they do this, ruining the lives and futures of the very people they say they are helping in the process.

I am uniquely positioned to say this because I spent most of my life on the Left and was a civil rights worker in the South in my early twenties. I was also, to my everlasting regret, a donor to the Black Panther Party in the seventies.

So I have seen this personally from both sides and my conclusion is inescapable.  The Left is far, far worse. They are obsessed with race in a manner that does not allow them to see straight.  Further, they project racism onto others continually, exacerbating situations, which in most instances weren't even there in the first place.  From Al Sharpton to Hillary Clinton, they all do it.

Barack Obama is one of the worst offenders in this regard.  Recently, in reaction to the horrid actions of the deranged, but solitary racist Dylann Root, the president claimed racism is in our DNA.

How could he possibly utter such nonsense and who was he talking about?  The majority of Americans are from families that came to this country after slavery existed.  Many of those were escaping oppression of their own.  In my case my family was fleeing  the pogroms of Eastern Europe.  Many of the members of my family who stayed behind ended up gassed in Auschwitz or exterminated in Treblinka.

Is Obama telling me that racism is in my DNA?  What a wretched and insulting statement.  If he means that, he should tell it to me face-to-face.

If he does, I will tell him what I think.  The racial situation in this country has gotten decidedly worse since he took office.  And he is a great deal to blame.  Ever since the beer summit it was obvious he was disingenuous and harmful on the subject of race, seeking to stir the pot when it was actually empty or nearly.  His claim that if he had had a son he would look like Travyon Martin was ridiculous and self-serving in the extreme.  Barack Obama is a product of the fanciest private school in Hawaii and his children go to Sidwell Friends, the fanciest school in D. C.  He takes vacations on Oahu and his wife parties in Switzerland. He had as much in common with Trayvon as I do with the queen of Spain.

And speaking of foreign lands, I've spent time abroad and speak Spanish and French and if Mr. Obama thinks the U.S. is a racist country, he ought to do a little bit of traveling not on Air Force One.  Try sitting at a French dinner table for twenty minutes and listening to the casual conversation if you think America is racist.

The truth is the USA is remarkably un-racist for a country its size.  We weren't always that way, obviously, but we walked the walk and we are now.  Or were.  The Democrat Party and its assorted media hacks are trying to take us backwards.  They suffer from nostalgia for racism for the glorious days when they could assert their moral superiority.  Sorry, those days are over.  The only way to stop remaining racism is to stop it, not talk about it, impute racism to people who don't have it and generally do everything possible to divide the American people from themselves.

And, Democrats, above all if you care about black people, stop it.  All you're doing is making their lives worse.



'Red Flag' Laws Are a Scam

Seizing guns from those disputably deemed more likely than not to be a threat is a hazardous slippery slope. Democrat officials could well use the process to disarm conservtives

“We know of no other enumerated constitutional right whose core protection has been subjected to a freestanding ‘interest-balancing’ approach. The very enumeration of the right takes out of the hands of government — even the Third Branch of Government — the power to decide on a case-by-case basis whether the right is really worth insisting upon. A constitutional guarantee subject to future judges’ assessments of its usefulness is no constitutional guarantee at all.” —The late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia on the Second Amendment

Following the three mass shootings in El Paso Texas, Dayton, Ohio, and Gilroy, California, Democrats are yet again exploiting tragedy to push for gun control. And this time weak-kneed Republicans, and possibly President Donald Trump, will join them in adopting a federal grant program aimed at encouraging states to embrace so-called “red flag” laws that would take guns away from people believed to be dangers to themselves or others.

Believed by whom? “State laws vary, but most stipulate that only specific people — usually family or household members — may petition a court for an extreme risk protection order,” the Associated Press reports.

Not exactly. In Colorado, which became the 15th state to adopt such a law — without a single Republican vote — family, household members, or law-enforcement officials can petition a court to have guns seized or surrendered based on a “preponderance of the evidence.” That is a civil standard whereby the individual whose guns are being seized is deemed more likely than not to be a threat.

Eagle County, Colorado, Sheriff James van Beek, who slammed the law, explains the implications. “In other words, there is just over a 50/50 chance of accuracy,” he writes, further warning that someone’s guns could be seized even without a mental-health professional making a determination of any kind. “Like the flip of a coin. Couldn’t that apply to just about anything a person does?”

It gets worse. A subsequent court hearing could extend a gun seizure for as long as 364 days. To prevent that from happening, gun owners must demonstrate the much higher standard of “clear and convincing evidence” they are not a threat.

Thus, gun owners are “guilty until proven innocent,” van Beek asserts.

Denver-based physician Brian C. Joondeph, M.D. makes it even clearer. “These laws usurp the Second Amendment’s right to bear arms, the Fourth Amendment’s protection from unreasonable searches and seizures, and the Sixth Amendment’s right of the accused to a speedy and public trial,” he states.

Moreover, unlike so many of his fellow Americans who simply want to do something that amounts to little more than virtue signaling, he sees the long-term agenda of an American Left well versed in employing incrementalist tactics to get its way. “How long will it take before states, or the federal government, if a red flag law becomes nationalized, start to view any and all Trump supporters as ‘posing a danger’ based on their skin color, gender, religion, and opposition to open borders?” he asks.

Fordham University professor Mark Naison knows the answer. “We are a country with a few million passionate white supremacists — and tens of millions of white supremacists by default,” he told CNN in 2017 following the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia.

And despite President Trump condemning that violence, the mainstream media took a single phrase from his speech — “you also had people that were very fine people, on both sides” — and used it to propagate one of the most contemptible hoaxes in modern history to paint the president and his followers as white supremacists.

A hoax it’s still pushing two years later.

The racist viewpoints of white supremacists are abhorrent. But are they sufficient, solely in and of themselves, to precipitate the confiscation of guns based on a preponderance of evidence? If so, what other political viewpoints would trigger such a law? In 2016, Bill Nye, the so-called “Science Guy,” expressed an openness to jailing people who didn’t believe in climate change.

Should so-called “science deniers” be targeted for confiscation?

Presidential candidate Corey “Spartacus” Booker doesn’t think red-flag laws go far enough. “We need far more bolder action to make our nation safe,” he asserts. “Red-flag laws, yes, they’re important, but they’re nowhere near enough to stop these rising levels of mass shootings.”

America certainly needs bolder action to make it safer. But that would require addressing the nation’s genuine problems with regard to gun violence — of all kinds, not just mass shootings. It would require addressing the reality that it is virtually a way of life in American cities like Chicago, where seven people were killed and 46 others were wounded in a single weekend, and Baltimore, where the murder rate is higher than the nations of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras — despite the fact that both cities have strict gun-control laws.

Such action might also require addressing the uncomfortable and oh-so-inconvenient correlation between gun violence and fatherlessness, courtesy of a Democrat-led “war on poverty” that eviscerated the nuclear family, or the seemingly orchestrated indifference toward the number of mass murderers on, or just coming off, psychiatric medications.

It might also require solutions based on hard evidence, such as the reality that data obtained between 1970 and 2017 revealed that red-flag laws “had no significant effect on murder, suicide, the number of people killed in mass public shootings, robbery, aggravated assault, or burglary,” or that countries such as France, Finland, Russia, and Switzerland, many of which have much stricter gun-control laws than America, have higher murder rates from mass public shootings.

Yet what America will be subjected to instead is exemplified by a quote courtesy of former Obama administration chief of staff and former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel. “You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it’s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.”

An opportunity to eviscerate the Constitution, perhaps?

Regardless, red-flag laws have their conservative defenders. “If legislatures compose red-flag laws with sufficient due process rights, it would be unreasonable to oppose them,” asserts Andrew McCarthy.

Why? Because “if reasonable action is not taken, it will become increasingly difficult to stave off unreasonable restrictions — which are favored by many Democrats and much of the judiciary,” he adds.

It’s precisely that kind of organized unreasonableness that precipitated the inalienable right to self-defense codified by the Founding Fathers, Mr. McCarthy — all the “interest balancing” efforts of a fascist-wannabe, exploit-a-crisis American Left and its GOP collaborators notwithstanding.



Leftmedia brands Trump a racist

Notwithstanding the cockamamie idea of impeaching Donald Trump, there are two primary strategies Democrats are using in the lead-up to the 2020 election: seeding a politically induced recession, and personifying Trump as an unmistakable racist.

The Washington Post went full throttle this week with the latter method, unashamedly asserting that Trump "is vexed by a branding crisis of his own: how to shed the label of 'racist.'" The Post pontificates, "As the campaign takes shape about 15 months before voters render a verdict on his presidency, Trump's Democratic challengers are marking him a racist, and a few have gone so far as to designate him a white supremacist." The article then claims:

Throughout his career as a real estate magnate, a celebrity provocateur and a politician, Trump has recoiled from being called the r-word, even though some of his actions and words have been plainly racist. Following a month in which he used racist remarks to attack four congresswomen of color, maligned a majority-black Baltimore district as a "rat and rodent infested mess" and saw his anti-immigrant rhetoric parroted in a statement that authorities believe was written by a mass shooter, the risk for Trump is that the pejorative that has long dogged him becomes defining. ... Trump recently called himself "the least racist person anywhere in the world," but his history is littered with racist and racially charged comments and actions. [Emphasis added.]

Importantly, the Post isn't accusing Trump of having used racist language. It's effectively saying with certitude that he has and is using racist language. Which effectively makes him a racist. We won't debunk every incident provided by the Post, but some reflection on the first assertion — that Trump "used racist remarks to attack four congresswomen of color" — provides all we need to know about its universal lack of impartiality.

Recall that Trump stated, "Why don't [Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley, and Rashida Tlaib] go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came[?] Then come back and show us how it is done." To which our Nate Jackson responded, "Trump said what he said poorly, leaving himself wide open for the very assault he's facing. He said what we think he meant far better in defending himself later. 'These are people that hate our country,' he said. 'If you're not happy in the U.S., if you're complaining all the time, very simply, you can leave.'"

Jackson concluded: "Buried under Trump's garbled prose is a legitimate point, and it has nothing to do with race. It has to do with loving or hating America and the political party guilty of the latter." But the Post isn't interesting in making that point, nor are any of the other Leftmedia outlets whose only agenda is portraying Trump as a racist to bolster support for Democrats in 2020 — the same strategy that's behind the Left's seeding a politically induced recession.

Amazingly, the Post in a separate piece claimed, "From race to plastic straws, Trump dials up culture wars in divisive play for 2020 votes." It was the Left that dialed up the culture wars to obtain more votes. And it's now steadfastly using the "racist" label to obtain even more votes.



Republican failure

I want to start with a rebuke to elected Republicans. In 2010, the Tea Party brought the House under your control in response to President Barack Obama’s overreach in shoving policies like ObamaCare down the throat of Americans. Instead of countering the overreach, you marginalized the new representatives. You told us we had to win the Senate to really make a difference. We won the Senate and you said we need to win the White House. We did. You did nothing.

For whatever reason, with the House, Senate, and White House, you did nothing, such as failing to repeal and replace ObamaCare as you promised for seven years. You did nothing to secure the southern border, so you lost the House in 2018. Voters are not stupid. You promised but did not deliver. Maybe you thought President Trump wouldn’t hold up against all the slanted media, or you just didn’t like his style. Whatever reason you used to do nothing, you missed the boat.

Due to the way the nation is going and the very extremes the far Left wants to take us to, you “may” have a chance to win the House in 2020. But I believe there will be no tolerance if you win and do nothing. I also believe your time in political power will be very short.

To my Democrat friends, I have to ask if you are comfortable with the changes that have taken place in recent years. President Obama said marriage was between a man and a woman. Then same-sex marriage was thrust upon us with his full support. President Bill Clinton said abortion should be “safe, legal, and rare.” Now, the New York Legislature stood and cheered when legislation approved abortion right up to the moment of birth. Other states discussed abortion being possible even after a child is born.

I know you hate President Trump. You don’t like his style. He’s arrogant (though I remember a very recent president who couldn’t make a speech without referring to himself dozens of times and in longer speeches, hundreds of times). He tweets too much. On some of these points I can agree with you completely. But then I look at what he actually has done, not like so many of our politicians said they would do! He keeps his campaign promises. Who knew that would be such a popular process?

Our Founding Fathers never envisioned a professional political body. If our nation has any chance of surviving the disaster that is our current political state, we need to elect those who have a track record of integrity and character. We need Republicans and Democrats who want the best for the country and leaders who have a proven track record; not those who make lofty promises that have no chance of becoming reality. That is where the far Left wants to take us. I don’t believe my Democrat friends really want to go that far left.



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

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


Sunday, August 18, 2019

Bald faced lies from two leading Democrats -- for political gain

Leftists normally have an uneasy relationship with the truth but this was egregious.  Leftist commentators argue that the lies from Warren and Harris were simply a matter of unimportant linguistics.  They were not.

The word "murderer" applied to an innocent man was wrong, not because of linguistics but because the action concerned was not a murder. Words differ because what they describe differs.  By using the word murder for a particular event that was not a murder, the Democrat lovelies accused an an innocent man of a grievous act that he did not do and which they know he did not do

The big stink this week, "largely ignored" by the Mainstream Media, is over false claims by United States senators and Democratic presidential contenders Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris that Michael Brown was "murdered" by a white policeman five years ago.

The legal definition of murder is "the killing of a human being by a sane person, with intent, malice aforethought (prior intention to kill the particular victim or anyone who gets in the way) and with no legal excuse or authority." Or murder in the second degree, which "is such a killing without premeditation."

Brown, a young black man shot to death by Ferguson, Mo., police officer Darren Wilson, was not murdered. Wilson, as the facts eventually made plain, fired in self-defense while under attack by Brown. That's a legally justified killing, which is pretty much the exact opposite of murder.

You'd think that for a fact-checking organization, this would be an open-and-shut case. And for at least two lefty publications, it was.

But apparently all that's not good enough for PolitiFact's Louis Jacobson, who chose instead to muddy the waters with his so-called "fact check."

Now if it were me running a fact-check site, I'd look at the claim ("he was murdered") and the facts ("the law says that a legally justified shooting isn't murder"), and tell my readers whether the claim stood up to the facts. Which seems to me not-at-all-unreasonable for a fact-checker.

But here's Jacobson's not-quite just-the-facts-ma'am take:

"In discussing the case with legal experts, however, we found broad consensus that "murder" was the wrong word to use — a legal point likely familiar to Harris, a longtime prosecutor, and Warren, a law professor.

In fact, two other Democratic senators with law degrees now running for president — Cory Booker and Kirsten Gillibrand — more accurately referred to it as a killing.

That said, experts who have studied police-related deaths and race relations said that focusing too much on the linguistics in controversial cases comes with its own set of problems."

Let me parse that for you. Jacobson admits that Brown was not murdered, but then goes on to argue that "murder" might be a good word to use anyway, because doing so fits a particular agenda.

Jacobson then quotes Jean Brown, a communications instructor (not a legal scholar) at Texas Christian University arguing, "I don’t know if the legalistic distinction intensifies the anger, but it does feel like an attempt to shift the debate from a discussion about the killing of black and brown people by police." Which is a fancy way of saying, "Brown wasn't murdered, but it suits my agenda to say that he was." And that's a fancy way of saying, "I'm not going to let the facts get in the way of stoking racial hatred."

"Quite frankly," she says, "it’s a distraction that doesn’t help the discussion."

Precisely, although perhaps Brown admitted more than she meant to.

Muddying the waters further, Jacobson says that "some legal experts argued that there’s a difference between being legally precise and using language more informally."



Federal Court Orders Maryland to Produce Voter Registration List Data to Judicial Watch

(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch announced today that a federal court has ordered the State of Maryland to produce voter list data for Montgomery County, the state’s biggest county. The court ruling comes in the Judicial Watch lawsuit filed July 18, 2017, against Montgomery County and the Maryland State Boards of Elections under the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA).

The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland, Baltimore Division (Judicial Watch vs. Linda H. Lamone, et al. (No. 1:17-cv-02006)). The decision follows NVRA-related Judicial Watch successes in California and Kentucky that could lead to removal of up to 1.85 million inactive voters from voter registration lists. The NVRA requires states to take reasonable steps to clean up its voting rolls and to make documents about its voter list maintenance practices available to anyone who asks.

Judicial Watch had sought the Maryland voter list data after discovering that there were more registered voters in Montgomery County than citizens over the age of 18 who could register. U.S. District Court Judge Ellen Lipton Hollander rejected Maryland’s objections to providing the voter list information under Section 8(i) of the National Voter Registration Act:

If Judicial Watch had submitted requests for voter registration data, corresponding to the thousands of Montgomery County voters, the State would have been required to produce each record, pursuant to Section 8(i). Instead, Judicial Watch merely submitted a single request for a voter list containing and compiling the same information about the thousands of voters in Montgomery County. Although both scenarios seek the same information, defendants believe that the NVRA would require compliance with only one of them. Rejecting Judicial Watch’s request based on semantics would be tantamount to requiring Judicial Watch to make thousands of separate requests. Neither the NVRA, the Court, nor common sense can abide such a purposeless obstruction.


Organizations such as Judicial Watch have the resources and expertise that few individuals can marshal. By excluding these organizations from access to voter registration lists, the State law undermines Section 8(i)’s efficacy. Accordingly, [Maryland election law] is an obstacle to the accomplishment of the NVRA’s purposes. It follows that the State law is preempted in so far as it allows only Maryland registered voters to access voter registration lists.

The dispute over the voter registration list arose from an April 11, 2017, notice letter sent to Maryland election officials, in which Judicial Watch explained Montgomery County had an impossibly high registration rate. The letter threatened a lawsuit if the problems with Montgomery County’s voter rolls were not fixed. The letter also requested access to Montgomery County voter registration lists in order to evaluate the efficacy of any “programs and activities conducted for the purpose of ensuring the accuracy and currency of Maryland’s official eligible voter lists during the past 2 years.”

Democrat Maryland officials, in response, attacked and smeared Judicial Watch by suggesting it was an agent of Russia.

“Now that the court has cleared the way for Judicial Watch to obtain the Montgomery voter data, our efforts to force the State of Maryland to comply with the NVRA and clean up its voter rolls may proceed,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “After our successful efforts to bring Kentucky, California, Ohio and Indiana into compliance with the National Voter Registration Act, it’s time for Maryland politicians to stop the politics, see the light, get right with the law and clean up the State’s voter rolls. If they don’t, we’ll see them in court again.”

Judicial Watch is the national leader in enforcing the provisions of the NVRA, having also filed a successful NVRA lawsuit against Indiana, causing it to voluntarily clean up its voting rolls. Judicial Watch also settled successfully with Ohio.



National Review: 'There Will Be No Republican Challenger to Trump Because the Right is Satisfied'


National Review has, from the very start of the Trump phenomenon, been one of the conservative outlets most critical of the man who ended up a) the Republican presidential nominee and b) president. Many writers of the magazine have explained in recent years why they can't support the man and why they believe he is no friend to traditional conservatism.

Even NR has to admit now, however, that former Congressman Joe Walsh is delusional if he thinks that there will be a Republican challenger to Trump. As the magazine's roving correspondent Kevin D. Williamson explains:

Walsh has gone one way since 2016, and the Republican party has gone another. There were a lot of heaving sighs and melancholy little gestures of resignation in 2016 — “It’s Trump or the commies!” they told us. A lot of people seemed to think that the word “binary” offered a smart-sounding way out of that. That was then. But unless I grievously misread the mood of Republicans, that’s not really the case anymore. The Republican party has embraced not only Trump but also Trumpism. It is his party now. There is not likely to be any challenge to Trump from the right because the Right is, by all indicators, satisfied with him.
That's exactly right. Back in 2016, I wasn't exactly a Trump fan. Quite the opposite, even: I was highly critical of the man. The main reason for this attitude of mine toward Trump was that I was afraid he was lying about his views in order to get nominated and, after that, elected. He would, I was almost sure, rapidly transform into a moderate Democrat once in office.

I'm happy to admit that I was wrong. Okay, sure, Trump hasn't been as conservative as president as, say, Ted Cruz would've been, but he has certainly done a very decent job. He was elected as a Republican and he has governed as one. That's all we could've asked for... and he has clearly delivered. At the same time, he's constantly bringing it to Democrats in a way that we could only have dreamed of a few years ago, with the willy-nilly, weak Republican leadership.

Trump has made America respected again on the world stage. The economy is booming. In Gorsuch and Kavanaugh he has added solid constitutionalist judges to the Supreme Court. And we get some anti-Democrat red meat thrown at us every single day. What more could we have possibly hoped for (in a president whose name isn't Ted Cruz)?

It should be obvious, then, that Williamson is 100 percent correct. There will not be a serious challenger to Trump from within the Republican Party. Trump is doing quite well. You'd have to be an utter fool as a Republican to risk dividing the party and, by doing so, handing the White House over to the Democrats, who have truly gone insane with all their SJW crap.



Senior citizens for Trump

They’re out there, in their millions—President Trump’s base.

But it is the older members of that constituency—senior citizens—that will put 45 over the top in states like Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin.

Trump’s older voters generally support his policies and proposals, but it's his leadership and performance on the economy that has inspired the most abiding faith. These seasoned Americans, people that the hard left hopes will die off soon, are watching and listening. They’re watching their children and grandchildren do better. They’re seeing a country freed from dependence on foreign oil. They see new international respect for the stars and bars, and a country that is no longer being taken advantage of in the global marketplace.

They’re biding their time until Election Day.

Now, with the clock ticking, Mueller crashed and burned, and the anti-Trump “racist” epithet thrown so often as to have become meaningless, the Democratic Socialist left now turns to its last-best scare-tactic: There’s going to be a recession!

On Wednesday, a panel of nervous-nellies on CNN, having come out in solidarity with comedian Bill Maher, are unable to mask their destructively partisan interest in ginning up a looming recession. Their latest conniption fit is focused on the assertion that Trump’s “trade war” with China will somehow result in a global economic meltdown that will have dire impact on the United States. How convenient, as we approach peak election season.

But something happened—is still happening-- on the way to CNN and MSNBC’s Great Recession II. Something they never report on, but can’t make go away. Trump’s boomer allies know a strong economic vision when they see one.

While the left harangues about the wealthy paying their “fair share,” duplicitously omitting the fact that in 2018 the top one percent paid a greater share of individual income taxes (37.3 percent) than the bottom 90 percent combined (30.5 percent), Trump’s elder demographic sees that the president has actually done something about real imbalances in the fair-share arena.

China One-Ups Trump in Trade War as Beijing Suspends All Imports of U.S. Farm Products
The president is getting NATO to pay up, and has stripped regulations that yoked U.S. corporations and businesses to an unequal playing field. On the campaign trail, he minced no words when calling out American companies that would repay the greatest capitalist infrastructure on earth with a “see ya later,” only to call back from across the border, or the ocean, with a sales pitch. With exceptions, they came into line.

He’s worked tirelessly to ensure that nation-busting trade deals like NAFTA got consigned to that dusty repository where humankind’s bad ideas are archived. As part of that accomplishment, in his resolve to reverse years of $500-billion-dollar trade deficits with China, Trump is taking our most adversarial global competitor to the precipice.

To repay the president for all he has done to strengthen the homeland’s economic outlook, Trump’s aging troopers plan to sit tight. They’ve been to a few political rodeos They won’t fall prey to Anderson Cooper’s hysteria. They know that the globalist schematic that has been foisted on the nation has been evolving for decades, and cannot be undone in a heartbeat. Like with Britain’s Brexit, there are short-term exigencies to be accounted for, status quo disruptions to absorb.

To appropriate an old Merrill-Lynch tag line, Trump’s scrappy oldsters are bullish on America. At the same time, they’re savvy enough to recognize that along with the winning, there will be the need for sacrifice.

Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) appeared on Fox News Sunday a few weeks ago to field questions from Chris Wallace about the economic jitters farmers are experiencing as a result of Trump’s tariff crackdown on China’s unfair trade policies and practices. Cotton patriotically introduced the concept of sacrifice, a point he’s been making since at least May of this year.

To extrapolate from Cotton’s argument, he believes that to right marketplace wrongs and ensure prosperous sailing for our economic ship of state, Americans may have to ride out some storm-tossed waters. He hopes that farmers hit by the disruption of trade policies that have stripped the nation of jobs and intellectual property will look at the big picture: that the globalist trade environment Trump inherited is not in the long-term interest of the United States.

Here’s a direct Cotton quote from the CBS interview linked above: "There will be some sacrifice on the part of Americans, I will grant you that," said Cotton, who served in the U.S. Army in both Afghanistan and Iraq from 2005 to 2009. "But also, I will say that sacrifice is pretty minimal compared to the sacrifices that our soldiers make overseas, that our fallen heroes who are laid to rest in Arlington make."

Trump’s senior citizen brigades are ready to make that sacrifice. And they’ve been around long enough to know that sacrifice must go hand-in-hand with strategy.

They realize that when the president makes a trade policy adjustment, like ordering a delay of new tariffs on certain Chinese products until December 15, it is not a sign of weakness, but an indication of flexibility, a reflection of reprised vigor on trade policy, as differentiated from the lock-step, kowtowing of previous leaders, who seemed never to have met a lousy trade deal they wouldn’t sign.

As an unprecedented investigatory regime has shown, to the confounded disappointment of his leftist, Deep State, and complicit media adversaries, Trump has come out free and clear. Russian collusion has become a punchline. Meanwhile, Trump’s campaign is amassing record-setting amounts of money for the coming struggle.

He’s bullish on America too, but his campaign is loaded for bear.

America First isn’t something that can be wished into being. Trump’s Gray Column understands this, and, seeing what they’ve seen, and knowing what they know, will vote to stay the course.



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

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