Trump’s Second Term

 

Donald Trump is having a pretty good second term for someone who wasn’t elected. Several favorable Supreme Court rulings while Biden continues to mess things up at home and abroad as predicted . . .

None of Our Business

 

The New Yorker completely missed the point of the verdict, which was “It’s none of our business. We’re returning the question to the people and the state legislatures so people can vote on it via their elected representatives.”

Also: is it intentional that the host looks like a man in a dress?

Better Get a Gun

 

The California Department of Justice’s 2022 Firearms Dashboard Portal went live on Monday with publicly-accessible files that include identifying information for those who have concealed carry permits. . . .

2,891 people in Los Angeles County with standard licenses also had their information compromised by the leak, though the database appears to include some duplicate entries as well.

What would be the point of having this information on a public website? Why not just provide a map showing which California homeowners have guns and which don’t so criminals don’t needlessly endanger themselves by invading an armed residence?

A Moment of Love

 

Everything was worn out about people: they complained about debts; they were involved in gossip; they had five-storied houses built; they traded in large objects; they bought ships, mines, vineyards; at bridge parties they lamented worriedly and falsely about being too busy; everybody talked about his work, whereas, in fact, nobody did anything; people played bridge and for whole nights groaned for a moment of love.

— Miroslav Krleža, On the Edge of Reason

After School Drag Shows, What’s Next?

 

I have to chuckle when I see this picture, not just because the guy facing the camera is grotesque, but because my own son grew up in the Irvine school district, which is a very academically oriented district, especially in north Irvine (where we lived) and south Irvine, both predominantly Asian neighborhoods, and if an Irvine kid texted home a photo like this, there’d be a lynch mob in the district office by 3 p.m. the same day.

The question on everyone’s lips would be “How is a drag show in a school gymnasium going to help my child get into a top university? Where does this go on the college application?”

We all have our little peccadillos, sexual and otherwise. How exhibiting certain of these (though not others), e.g., cross-dressing, not only in public but in schools became a thing that people do is a mystery to me.

Speaking of peccadillos, the actor David Carradine, who apparently died of autoerotic asphyxiation, was found wearing a wig and fishnet, with red women’s lingerie found nearby. There is some correlation between cross-dressing and autoerotic asphyxiation, as also seen in this case and this case and others.

Coming soon to a school gymnasium near you!

You can’t get much done in life if you only work on the days when you feel good. — Jerry West

Julian Assange and the Farce of US Press Freedoms

 

The eleven-year persecution of Julian Assange was extended and escalated on Friday morning. The British Home Secretary, Priti Patel, approved the U.S.’s extradition request to send Julian Assange to Virginia to stand trial on eighteen felony charges under the 1917 Espionage Act and other statutes in connection with the 2010 publication by WikiLeaks of thousands of documents showing widespread corruption, deceit, and war crimes by American and British authorities along with their close dictatorial allies in the Middle East.

This decision is unsurprising — it has been obvious for years that the U.S. and UK are determined to destroy Assange as punishment for his journalism exposing their crimes — yet it nonetheless further highlights the utter sham of American and British sermons about freedom, democracy and a free press. . . .

But putting oneself in Assange’s position, it is easy to see why he is so eager to avoid extradition to the U.S. for as long as possible. The Espionage Act of 1917 is a nasty and repressive piece of legislation. It was designed by Woodrow Wilson and his band of authoritarian progressives to criminalize dissent against Wilson’s decision to involve the U.S. in World War I. It was used primarily to imprison anti-war leftists such as Eugene Debs, as well as anti-war religious leaders such as Joseph Franklin Rutherford for the crime of publishing a book condemning Wilson’s foreign policy.

One of the most insidious despotic innovations of the Obama administration was to repurpose and revitalize the Wilson-era Espionage Act as an all-purpose weapon to punish whistleblowers who denounced Obama’s policies. The Obama Justice Department under Attorney General Eric Holder prosecuted more whistleblowers under the Espionage Act of 1917 than all previous administrations combined — in fact, three times as many as all prior presidents combined. One whistleblower charged by Obama officials under that law is NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, who in 2013 revealed mass domestic spying of precisely the kind that Obama’s Director of National Intelligence James Clapper (now of CNN) falsely denied conducting when testifying to the Senate . . .

Whatever else one might think of Assange, there is simply no question that he is one of the most consequential, pioneering, and accomplished journalists of his time. One could easily make the case that he occupies the top spot by himself. And that, of course, is precisely why he is in prison: because, just like free speech, “free press” guarantees in the U.S. and UK exist only on a piece of parchment and in theory. Citizens are free to do “journalism” as long as it does not disturb or anger or impede real power centers. Employees of The Washington Post and CNN are “free” to say what they want as long as what they are saying is approved and directed by the CIA or the content of their “reporting” advances the interests of the Pentagon’s sprawling war machine.

Real journalists often face threats of prosecution, imprisonment or even murder, and sometimes even mean tweets. Much of the American corporate media class has ignored Assange’s persecution or even cheered it precisely because he shames them, serving as a vivid mirror to show them what real journalism is and how they are completely bereft of it. . . .

Free speech and press freedoms do not exist in reality in the U.S. or the UK. They are merely rhetorical instruments to propagandize their domestic population and justify and ennoble the various wars and other forms of subversion they constantly wage in other countries in the name of upholding values they themselves do not support.

Mayor Pete’s Definition of Insanity

 

Pete Buttigieg Calls ‘Door’ Solution To Mass Shootings ‘Definition Of Insanity’huffpost.com

Mayor Pete’s timing was not ideal as a few days later, a man aggressively trying to enter an Alabama elementary school was shot and killed by police. He couldn’t get in because the doors were locked.

It seems like any serious solution to school shootings would have to include multiple steps, one being hardening the physical security at the school.

Does Mayor Pete lock the doors of his home? Does he lock the doors of his car if he doesn’t want anyone getting into it?

But locking the doors of a school is the “definition of insanity”?

“People Who Menstruate …”

 

Focusing on the Stuff That’s Important

 

Never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty and truth and compassion against injustice and lying and greed. If people all over the world…would do this, it would change the earth.— William Faulkner

The Happy Pug Tail Wag

 

The Jack Del Rio Dust-Up

 

Washington Commanders fine defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio $100,000 for his comments about Jan. 6usatoday.com

Del Rio referred to Jan. 6, 2021, as a “dust-up” rather than the preferred-by-many term “insurrection.”

In a statement released by the team, coach Ron Rivera said, among other things:

“This morning I met with coach Del Rio to express how disappointed I am in his comments on Wednesday. His comments do not reflect the organization’s views and are extremely hurtful to our great community here . . .”

What a great place to work! You’re not allowed to have a thought and say it out loud without having it pre-approved by “the organization.”

I’m also surprised that even the most dysfunctional crybabies find the use of the term “dust-up” hurtful, let alone “extremely hurtful.”

Maybe it’s just me . . . I don’t think that way. I think I would find losing an eye or a limb extremely hurtful. I mean, that does seem like it would be hurtful in the extreme.

But to be confronted with a dissenting opinion, I can bear up under that very easily.

I hope the next thing to happen here is a statement from Del Rio back to the organization saying “I’m not willing to give up my right as a man and an American to think and speak freely, which I believe is granted to me by God and the Constitution, even though I may at times say something that other people don’t want to hear. I’m also not willing to be publicly humiliated for the benefit of dysfunctional crybabies. Therefore I resign effective immediately. Sincerely fucking yours, Jack.”

And That’s the Truth: Don’t Say Gay

 
Sojourner Truth

[And That’s the Truth is a feature by our guest blogger, Sojourner Truth– PE]

Happy Pride Month, which reminds me I wanted to say something about that “Don’t Say Gay” bill in Florida.

I never called it the “Don’t Say Gay” bill. Sometimes I called it the “Don’t Say You Ain’t Groomers and Pedophiles When You Obviously Is” bill. Or the “Don’t Fuck Around With My Chillen Behind My Back” bill.

Well, my chillen is all growed up now, so I should call it the “Don’t Fuck Around With People’s Chillen Behind They Back” bill.

Fuck around and find out, fuckers.

Yo sex practices ain’t no interest to me and they sho ain’t no interest to a small child.

And that’s the Truth!

Paul Pelosi DUI Charges Dropped

 

Assessing the Dangers That We Face in Life

 

Since a mentally disturbed 18-year-old white supremacist murdered 10 African Americans and injured three others at a Buffalo market May 14, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) report “Murder and Extremism in the United States in 2021” has been cited repeatedly as evidence of the lethal threat posed by far-right extremists.

There are a lot of problems with the ADL data, starting with the fact that many of the “white supremacist” killings were not hate crimes aimed at terrorizing blacks or other minorities.

For example:

  • Two members of a white supremacist prison gang allegedly killed a member of the rival Southwest Honkeys prison gang.
  • A New Jersey man who had vandalized synagogues and distributed neo-Nazi pamphlets strangled his wife.
  • A white supremacist with a swastika and SS tattoos on his face killed another man in an extended-stay hotel following an argument over a social media post.
  • A member of a white supremacist street gang in Fresno, CA, allegedly shot a man “with whom he had long been feuding.”
  • Four members of the New Mexico Aryan Brotherhood were involved in a shootout amongst themselves inside a vehicle. (You’ve gotta love that one.)

The ADL admits that the majority of murders it attributes to white supremacists were non-ideological.

“Over the past 10 years, only 86 of the 244 white supremacist killings (35%) were ideological murders,” the report says. “The remainder were group-related but not ideological attacks, were related to traditional criminal activities, or were murders for which no clear motive could be determined.”

 

The ADL also claims that other “right-wing extremists” were responsible for another 20% of extremist killings during the 10-year period from 2012 through 2021—including those it describes as “anti-government” and “incel/manosphere.” Why being anti-government or incel requires being a right-wing extremist is left as an exercise for the reader.

 

The ADL report also overstates the percentage of white supremacist murders because it omits some high-profile crimes committed by non-whites.

For example:

  • A black man ambushing white police officers in Dallas, killing five and wounding 11.
  • A black man with a history of racist social posts driving into a mostly white crowd in a Christmas parade in Waukesha, WI, killing six and injuring 62.

For 2021, the ADL lists just two murders by people it classifies as “black nationalists.” If the Waukesha victims were included, black racist murders would account for 23% of extremist murders (eight of 35) for 2021.

 

A sense of perspective is very important, I think. Context. And it’s not provided by just spitting out headlines like “Right-Wing Extremists Responsible for 75% of Extremist Killings.”

During the same 10-year period cited by the ADL, identifying 86 ideological murders by white supremacists, there were at least 165,000 murders in the U.S., so 86 represents about 0.05% of all cases. And 86 murders over 10 years in a country of well over 300 million people doesn’t seem like an alarming number. You might say, well, it’s 86 too many, but it’s still not an alarming number.

The FBI has not issued the official number of murders in the U.S. in 2021, but it is expected to exceed the number of murders in 2020: 21,570—of which, according to ADL, 23 were committed by extremists.

So the ADL data could also be characterized as follows: The number of murders committed by extremists is very small. In 2020, according to the CDC, 1,080 people were killed falling out of bed. Therefore, you are 47 times more likely to be killed by a bed than by an extremist.

 

So why do we constantly hear that white supremacy is an existential threat to society but we hear nothing about putting something soft around your bed in case you fall out of it? Or putting rails on your bed so you don’t fall out of it?

Because no one is afraid of a bed, but as long as people are kept uninformed about the actual numbers regarding white supremacists, they can be worked into a useful state of panic and fury completely out of proportion to reality.

 

How many white supremacists are there in the U.S.? I’ve never heard or read an estimate of the number of active white supremacists, or the number of people who identify as white supremacists. Try an online search, you’ll see what I mean. Either nobody knows, or the people who do know won’t say because the number is so small that it would invalidate whatever point they’re trying to make.

Ending Gun Violence With T-Shirts

 

“I was gonna shoot up a school but then I saw Steve Kerr wearing a T-shirt and changed my mind.”

What the Gun Debate Misses

 

From Kevin D. Williamson:

Almost every single substantive gun-control proposal put forward by our progressive friends is oriented toward adding new restrictions and regulatory burdens to federally licensed firearms dealers and the people who do business with them: what they can sell and what they cannot sell, to whom they can sell, under what conditions they may sell, etc. But, as I often remark, gun-store customers are just about the most law-abiding demographic in the United States. The best information we have comes from the Department of Justice, which found in 2019 that less than 2 percent of all prisoners had a firearm obtained from a retail source at the time they committed their crimes.

 

Criminals mostly don’t get their guns at gun stores — because they mostly can’t.

The great majority of murders committed in the United States — upwards of 80 percent — are committed by people with prior arrest records, often by people with prior convictions for violent crimes or prior weapons offenses — and almost none of our gun-control proposals is targeted at this group.

 

Democrats who complain that it easier to buy a gun than it is to vote are lying for partisan political purposes and should be dismissed with contempt.

 

The data very strongly suggest that people who buy firearms from firearms dealers very rarely commit crimes of any kind with those firearms. . . . Given the very weak statistical relationship between buying a gun from a gun dealer and committing a crime with that gun, why is there so much focus on federally licensed firearms dealers and the people who do business with them?

The answer is that this conversation has almost nothing to do with violent crime, and almost nothing to do with policies aimed at reducing violent crime.

The gun-control debate is first and foremost a culture-war issue for Democrats. There is a great deal of violent crime in the United States, and that crime is concentrated in big cities over which Democrats enjoy an effective monopoly of political power. The people who commit most of the murders in the United States — and the people who most often die in those murders — check a lot of Democratic-voter demographic boxes: They are very disproportionately low-income African Americans in urban areas. Democrats are desperate to put a more Republican-looking face on the violent-crime problem, preferably one that is older, white, middle-aged, rural, southern, and Evangelical. That is the reason for the focus on the National Rifle Association in particular and on gun dealers and “gun culture” in general. As is so often the case in our contemporary politics, what we are talking about matters mostly because it is a way of not talking about something else.

 

The Democratic Party and the progressive movement more generally are dominated culturally and financially by college-educated, affluent, white metropolitan professionals, mostly living in those two-thirds of U.S. households in which there is no firearm present. They present themselves as the champions of poor, black, urban communities about which they know almost nothing, and understand themselves as the enemies of lower-income, aging, white, rural communities — the stereotypical NASCAR crowd — about which they also know almost nothing. Never mind that much of the increase in gun ownership in recent years has been driven by women, African Americans, and recreational shooters in urban areas — the eggbound snake-handling hayseeds and would-be militiamen of Georgia and Alabama, whose cultural prominence is almost exclusively a matter of the progressive imagination, simply must be the face of gun ownership, at least for the purposes of culture war. Never mind that most of the violent crime involving guns in this country is carried out in zip codes where the voters elect Democrats almost exclusively, and never mind that the reason we do not act on those “common sense” gun-control measures on which almost all of us notionally agree — such as prosecuting straw-buying and other everyday weapons offenses — is the fact that doing this would irritate important Democratic constituencies in the big cities.

 

Among the few proposals that are targeted at someone other than licensed gun dealers and their customers is the idea of so-called universal background checks, also known as “closing the gun-show loophole.”

According to the DOJ, the share of prisoners who obtained guns through gun shows was — commit this figure to memory — 0.8 percent.

 

‘Weapons of War’

As I have pointed out many times, the 5.56mm semiautomatic rifles that progressives like to call “weapons of war” are not really that, inasmuch as they are not generally issued to troops in the United States or elsewhere. But do you know what is a weapon of war? Granddad’s deer rifle. The ubiquitous Remington 700 bolt-action rifle has long been a favorite of hunters, and it also is the go-to sniper rifle for military services around the world.

Gun-control activists insist that AR-style rifles are not hunting rifles. A typical tirade found on the Internet: “An AR-15 is not a hunting rifle. Do you really need a high-powered rifle round and high-capacity magazine to take down Bambi? Last time I checked, Bambi wasn’t wearing a bullet proof vest or hiding behind cement barriers.” That isn’t Joe Biden, but it could be.

This is, of course, wrong on every count: The rifles in question not only are hunting rifles; they are today the most common hunting rifle in the United States. But they are not rifles that typically fire a “high-powered” round — in fact, the standard 5.56mm round has long been considered insufficiently powerful for humane deer hunting and has been prohibited at various times in various places for that purpose for that reason. Hog-hunting is one of the most popular kinds of pursuit in the United States, and many outfitters will not allow a hunter to use a 5.56mm rifle for hogs — because it is not powerful enough. The idea of shooting through concrete barriers and body armor with that round is an uncertain proposal at best. You’d be better off with a traditional big-game hunting rifle, which is four or five times as powerful as the “higher-powered” 5.56mm. But, in any case, most of the popular hunter cartridges either began as military rounds (such as the .30-06) or still are military rounds (such as the .308 Winchester). As a practical matter, you aren’t going to find a rifle that is good for killing elk that isn’t also good for killing people.

And that fact matters . . . almost not at all, since rifles are almost never used in murders in the United States, accounting for only 2.5 percent of homicides. What murders in 2022 have in common with murders in 1922 is that the gun most commonly used in a murder is the most common handgun. Once upon a time, it was the Colt Single-Action Army revolver, and then it was the .38 Special, and now it is the 9mm pistol. In 20 years, it may be something else — but the shooters probably will be the same people, i.e., habitual criminals with prior records.

And gun-control advocates will still be focused on the 2 percent of criminals who buy guns from gun dealers, or possibly the 0.8 percent who get them from gun shows.

Schools Focused on the Wrong Things

 

In a study of mass shootings from 2008 to 2017, the Secret Service found that “100 percent of perpetrators showed concerning behaviors, and in 77 percent of shootings, at least one person—most often a peer—knew about their plan.” — dailysignal.com

100 percent is pretty high. It doesn’t get much higher than 100 percent.

It’s always seemed to me that mass shooters turn out to have been known to family, friends, co-workers, law enforcement, mental health professionals, etc., as violent and unstable, but no one took effective action to keep the person from going off the rails.

For example, co-workers of the Uvalde school shooter had a nickname for him: “school shooter.”

Meanwhile, the National School Boards Association (NSBA) last September drafted a letter to President Biden calling for use of the “Army National Guard and its Military Police” to precent parents from becoming overly vehement at school board meetings.

Wouldn’t it make more sense to focus attention and manpower on preemptive action vis-à-vis highly predictable mass shootings?

Not a perfect plan but a better use of time and effort than maintaining parents on “domestic terrorist” watch lists.

Related Links

Transitioning to Dogs

 

Japanese man spends $15,700 on dog costume to fulfill lifelong dream of transforming into an animalnews.yahoo.com

Just wanted to point out that I was ahead of the curve on this one: Why Can’t Children Transition to Dogs?