Everybody really needs to see this one -- which is really rather short -- before I go on to my account of the Seven Stupid States and the Abortion Controversy.
Tuesday, May 28, 2019
(I don't usually copy other people's articles, but this one is just too fascinating to resist.)
Herman Bendell, Superintendent of Indian Affairs
“Curly-Haired White Chief Who Speaks with One Tongue”
Friday, May 17, 2019
A random comment by some news pundit on TV reminded me of something that happened 'way back when I was still living in California. My godson Darshan knew a couple of runaway kids who were desperately looking for a safe place to stay, so I took them in while I hunted around for any safe resources for them. It took me all summer to get reliable help for them, which says something about the real social services in supposedly-Liberal California. The boy's problem was that his family had singled him out to be the clan scapegoat, and everybody took turns beating him. The girl, remakably pretty at 14, was getting unwelcome attention from her stepfather, and simply couldn't convince her mother of that. Yes, they both had good reason for running away.
Anyway, the two kids -- a boy and a girl -- also had a problem with dyslexia. The could both read, but had trouble with their eyes, and attention, tracking left to right.
The boy could read an average book for about five minutes, and then his eyes would start wandering and the letters would slip and slide all over the page. I found a simple fix for him: a clear-plastic magnifying ruler, which kept the letters lined up for him. Using that ruler, he could read for as much as ten minutes at a time. Unfortunately, his parents -- who had decided that his rebellion was caused by drugs-drugs -- sent him off to a "treatment center" which took the ruler away from him because "it could be used as a weapon". He eventually got out of there, reached legal age and left the state, so I don't know if he ever got a replacement for that ruler, or any other treatment for his dyslexia.
The girl's problem was a little different; letters and whole words would flip from right to left and back, and she had trouble telling the two apart. I guessed that she needed to get a solid "feel" for left and right, so her eyes could track left-to-right automatically. So I made a habit of taking her into the back room every evening, where she would pull her shirt off, and I'd take a hairbrush and brush it slowly from her left hand, up her arm, across her shoulders and then down her right arm, while chanting "left...to right, left...to right". After a month of this, I gave her four pretty -- and heavy -- costume rings to wear on all the fingers of her left hand, so she could always feel the difference between left and right. Eventually she made peace with her mother, moved in with a sympathetic aunt, and went back to school. Last I heard, she was planning to go to community college after she got out of high school, or passed the GED, so I guess she managed to read adequately.
Soon after that I moved down to Arizona and lost track of the kids. They're certainly adults now, and I hope they survived well.
What always puzzled me about the case of those kids was what poor resources there were for them, in supposedly-Progressive California. It took me weeks to find a law firm that would provide pro-bono legal services for children, and none of the schools or rehabs we could find provided any treatment for their dyslexia. Why not, when I could do as much with my own small means? I wonder if, in the years since, anything has changed.
Tuesday, April 30, 2019
Understand that, as an old peace-marcher and radical-labor activist, I have no love for the FBI. I despise their bigotry, their corruption, their incompetence, and particularly their ironclad political loyalty to the Democratic Party Uber Alles. (The bureau gained its present political power under Woodrow Wilson, who did it in order to sick federal agents on the then-dangerous Labor Movement -- particularly the Industrial Workers of the World. Likewise, I despise the CIA for its similar sins -- and its blind loyalty to the Republican Party.) Nonetheless, to give the devil his due, I must admit that it's the closest thing to a reliable source of accurate information on crime in the US. It's absolutely more accurate than the Southern Poverty Law Center, or the Anti-Defamation League, or the National Crime Victimization Survey -- all of which are private organizations, far more pro-Democrat/Liberal/Progressive/Socialist in attitude, and far less bound by govt. oversight.
Therefore, when the FBI admits to the Bureau of Justice Statistics that it can't confirm any great "surge" in "White supremacist" groups, membership, or violent crime -- despite its best efforts --https://www.lawfareblog.com/search-data-white-supremacist-violent-crime, you can be pretty sure that no such "surge" exists, regardless of what all the Democrat presidential candidates and their media cronies may tell you.
The reasons for inventing such a "surge" are politically obvious (https://spectator.org/the-mythical-rise-in-white-supremacist-violence/) here in the US. The Democrats have totally hated Trump, plotted to impeach him since the day after election day, and shown themselves willing to use any tactic available, including hoaxes (https://www.thenewamerican.com/usnews/crime/item/28066-new-phenomenon-of-fake-hate-crimes-creates-perplexing-problems-for-law-enforcement).
The theory they're pushing through the media is that Trump Is A Nazi And So Are All His Voters; therefore, anything he says in any of his sloppy speeches or comments (admittedly, Trump is a very bad public speaker) is a "dog-whistle" urging violence to neo-Nazis everywhere. His every word is a secret code that only White Supremacists (and, of course, properly "woke" Democrats) can understand, that's meant to Incite Racial Violence Here And Abroad. That's how his "divisive rhetoric" is somehow responsible for a mosque shooting in New Zealand and Muslim attacks on Christians in Sri Lanka, not to mention a synagogue shooting in Calilfornia. It's all Trump's fault!
Never mind that prominent Democrats like Maxine Waters have been openly inciting attacks on Trump voters everywhere in the US, and those attacks have provably happened. No, that's different! Never mind that the New Zealand shooter mentioned in his manifesto and live video (ferociously censored by the NZ govt.) that he hated Trump ("As a leader? God, no!") and deliberately shot up the two mosques (he was stopped at the second one by a worshiper with a rifle) in order to make the NZ govt. ban semi-auto rifles -- which it promptly did (which suggest the question, was the NZ govt. working for the murderer, or was he working for them?). No, that's irrelevant. Never mind that Jihadist terrorists took the credit for slaughtering those hundreds of Christians in Sri Lanka. No, they must have been "provoked" by "anti-Muslim hate-crimes" and, of course, Trump's "rhetoric". Never mind that the California synagogue shooter (who was driven away by an off-duty border patrol agent with a gun) referred to Trump as a "Zionist, Jew-loving, anti-White, traitorous c*cksucker". No, no comment from the media about that. No, it's all Trump's fault for creating a "surge in White supremacy groups". Uhuh.
This scenario makes it easy to ignore the real rise in Jihadist-encouraged religious violence, in the US and the rest of the world. For years the media have been ignoring the FBI's reports that the single group most often victimized by hate-crimes is Jews -- in the US. In the rest of the world it's Christians. The perpetrators are overwhelmingly Jihadist Muslims, which no one seems to want to admit. Neither have the media noted that, according to the FBI, fully half of all claimed/reported "anti-Muslim" hate-crimes are hoaxes, and the other half are committed by other Muslims. (https://quillette.com/2019/02/22/hate-crime-hoaxes-are-more-common-than-you-think/) This policy of deliberately not looking does more than just allow blaming Trump And The Nazis for much of the world's violence; it also hides or excuses Jihadist violence to everybody else.
The hate/blame/get Trump motivation of the American political Left is understandable, but it doesn't explain the almost-frantic defense of the Jihadists, not just in the US but elsewhere. We really have to wonder why so many political pundits would rather raise an illusion of phantom Nazis than deal with the real political threats on their doorstep. Really, they have to know that ignoring the problem -- or blaming Trump And The Nazis for it -- will not make it go away.
Wednesday, April 17, 2019
Understand that I have never been a fire-fighter, nor dealt with anything bigger than a campfire. Nonetheless, I know that a fire doesn't start spontaneously in two spots within 100 feet of each other at the same time. That, according to the early investigators' reports, is what happened in the Cathedral of Notre Dame: one fire at the far end of the nave, up high under the roof, and the other in the north bell tower.
Another oddity: the church closed for the day at 6:00 PM and visitors and staff began filing out, but at 6:20 the staff heard a fire-alarm going off. They searched for the fire but couldn't find any sign of one. Local firemen arrived, and couldn't find anything either. 23 minutes later, when everyone had left the building, a second fire-alarm went off -- and this time the fire under the roof had well started. That's when the firefighters arrived in serious numbers and began fighting the blaze with all the equipment they could bring in. It took 9 hours to put the devastating fire out.
Everyone saw the live news-feeds of Notre Dame burning, and various officials commenting on it. The commentators took exquisite care to avoid even hinting at the word "arson"; the closest they would come was to say that the cause of the blaze might have been "accidental", possibly as a result of the actions of the team doing repairs on the structure. In fact, some officials actually claimed that the fire was "accidental" before the blaze was out, well before any investigators could have gone in and studied it.
There was not a whisper of the "ethnic" makeup of the workmen on those repair teams. There was not a hint of the fact that, while grieving Parisians outside sang "Salve Regina" and cried as the cathedral's spire fell, further back were crowds of "migrants" laughing and cheering as the cathedral burned.
Nobody mentioned that, just the week before, the church of Sainte Surplice -- the second-biggest church in Paris -- was also burned, and the police had no problem admitting that the cause was arson. Neither did the news-feeds mention that churches have been burned and vandalized all over France at the rate of at least one per week for the past year and more. The well-trained media of France haven't mentioned that one of the complaints of the Yellow-Vest protesters is that the working-class of France is being taxed to death to pay for roughly a million "migrants" sitting about on Welfare. And none of the news-media outside of France mention the "migrant" riots that plague Paris almost monthly -- usually notable for mass tossing of Molotov cocktails. So far, none of the Jihadist groups have actually taken credit for the burning of Notre Dame, though ISIS-linked groups have called it "retribution" and "punishment" (for what?), and issued threats and warnings of more burnings to come. Nobody will mention aloud what everyone is thinking.
Only CNN even hinted at the possibility that Jihadists set the fire, and that was a masterpiece of subtlety. Its news programs showed, repeatedly, the Notre Dame spire falling in flames -- juxtaposed with images of the Twin Towers falling on 9/11/01 -- and let the viewers draw their own conclusions.
The question now is how much do the French police, government and media know, and how much are they only guessing. Seeing how much they've been concealing for the past year and more, I suspect that they're not guessing.
So why the widespread secrecy?
The comparison with 9/11 is useful. If it becomes widely known that the Jihadist "migrants" burned Notre Dame -- let alone Sainte Surplice and all the rest -- the French populace won't stand for it, any more than Americans put up with the 9/11 massacre. The Yellow Vest protests would more than double; they 'd paralyze the country, demanding that the French government stop supporting or welcoming the "migrants", but turn around and Throw The Bums Out. They might even demand that the French government join the US in making war on the Jihadists overseas. In any case, they'd make a point of hunting down and throwing out the Jihadist "migrant" groups, no matter how their apologists whine about "Islamophobia".
In fact, if it becomes clear that the Jihadists burned Notre Dame, "Islamophobia" may become a public virtue instead of a knee-jerk insult. Very few politicians want that! It would hasten the inevitable coming war between the Jihadists and the rest of the world.
Thursday, April 11, 2019
For the past few days I've been distracted with chasing down a parable that I heard many years ago. I recall that it was written by one of the classic Anarchist theoreticians, and for a long time I thought that was Max Stirner -- it sounded like his kind of wacky humor -- but I haven't been able to find it under his name. Possibly I've got the title wrong, but what I recall was "The Parable of the Highwayman". If anybody can help me hunt it down, I'll be grateful.
The tale, as best I remember, goes like this; the excuse govts. give for themselves is that they protect us from robbers of various sorts -- "enemies foreign and domestic", as US law puts it. In exchange, the govt. asks for... well, everything that govts. ask for.
So how much much worse can the robbers be?
Consider the "Highwayman", says the parable. He attacks you on the road, he takes your money, and then, having gotten what he wants, he goes away. He does not accompany you on down the road, telling you how important he is and how lucky you are to have him with you. He does not tell you how to conduct your life to the smallest detail. He does not keep on robbing you at regular intervals. He goes away.
In this way, the Highwayman is more endurable than the govt.
Well, the author of the parable didn't take into account modern slave-dealers or drug-cartels, but for the most part his parable still holds up. He could also have added persistent deceit, and poorly enough to be insulting.
For example of the latter, I give you Senator Cory Booker -- yet another reason that my childhood state of New Jersey is a good place to be from. He's not content with pandering to the Black vote by pushing the old idiocy about Reparations For Slavery, which has made even other Black Democrats call him out for patronizing and insulting the voters. No, he's also jumped on the anti-gun bandwagon with shameless exploitation of victims and flat-out lying, disguised under some weasel-wording so thin that it insults the people he's trying to fool. At a "presidential(!) town hall" in North Carolina a few days ago, he brought in a weepy self-described stay-at-home mother who felt "traumatized" by learning that her daughter was taught an "active shooter drill" in kindergarten, and asked Booker the perfect set-up question of what he intended to do about "all this gun-violence". He neatly avoided giving any real concrete solutions, but complained mightily that in the US we have "in the aggregate, a mass shooting every day".
Now think about that. "In the aggregate": what country is "TheAggregate"? I've never heard of it. Have you? It sounds like a good place to stay away from. In the United States, on the other hand (FBI stats), we do not have a mass shooting every day, or every week, or every month, or even every year -- not unless you define "mass shooting" as a single incident in which at least two people are shot": not killed, just shot. The FBI defines it a little differently: as a single incident in which at least four people are shot dead. Now an average of 30,000 Americans die every year of gunshots -- but a little over 20,000 of those deaths are suicides, another 1100 are "justifiable homicides" (i.e., crooks shot in the act by police or armed citizens), and about 500 are accidents. That leaves about 8400 real gun-murders per year. Now the figures fluctuate considerably from year to year, but generally about 3/4ths of all those real murders are singletons: that's about 6300 per year, which leaves the other 2100 as real honest-to-whatever "mass shootings" -- depending on the math. Divide 2100 by 365, and you get... a little over 5 per day. (Your mathematics may vary; I'm terrible with arithmetic.) But at least now we're getting close to what the FBI defines as a "mass shooting". Considering that the majority of FBI-defined mass shootings are gang-fights in just 8 of our largest cities, and those gang-fights usually involve more than 5 participants, I think we can compress the numbers a little further.
At least now we can guess where Booker got his "aggregate" from -- and it's a cheat. Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me -- but try to fool me with insultingly stupid cheats, and you deserve to be met in a deserted ally with an old traditional Newark, New Jersey tool: a half-brick in the toe of a sturdy tube-sock. Guess.
In any case, the average highwayman -- or street-thug -- would be better to deal with than a politician like this. He makes Trump look downright honorable by comparison, and that takes some doing.
Friday, March 29, 2019
No sooner was Rep. Alldyslexia Occasional-Cortex's infamous Green New Deal voted away (47 to 0) than the House Democrats came up with a new, somewhat watered-down version which, no doubt, they'll be trying to sell to the voters over the next few weeks at least. The details haven't been published yet, but what little information has leaked out includes the wonderfully Green commitment to abolishing all use of "fossil fuels" -- including coal, petroleum, and natural gas. Of course there's a commitment to ending the practice of "fracking".
Now I certainly would agree that we've got to stop burning coal and petroleum; they're much too valuable to burn! Coal and petroleum are much more useful in chemical reactions than for burning up and turning into air pollution. Besides, once those fossil deposits are used up, there won't be any more of them. Yes, it's possible to create, in a fashion, coal and petroleum -- by vacuum-baking wood into charcoal and squeezing oil out of jojoba nuts -- but we'll never make enough that way to make them economically viable as fuel. Better to make internal-combustion engine fuel out of ethanol -- which can be made, by half a dozen different processes, from cellulose. Also better to make diesel oil from algae, which a lot of companies along the west coast are doing right now. In fact, the US Navy has established two fuel depositories -- one on the east coast and one on the west -- containing algae-sourced biodiesel fuel: enough to supply whole fleets of ships. Yes, it is possible to replace coal and petroleum with "renewable" fuel.
For that matter, it's possible to replace standard Uranium and Plutonium-based nuclear power-plants with much safer and cheaper Thorium-salts reactors, which produce enough heat to boil water to make steam to turn generators, without ever getting close to being fissionable. For some reason the Green Deal pushing Reps. don't mention any funding for research and development of Thorium reactors, although the govt. of India has already done so.
But what particularly floors me is their inclusion of "natural gas" among the fuels they want banned. "Natural gas" is nothing more than methane, which is produced by natural processes, such as the farts (more accurately, belches) from all those cows that AOC wants banned. It's created in nature by microbes breaking down organic compounds -- particularly in swamps, which is where "swamp gas" comes from. It's entirely a renewable fuel; there are countless books on homesteading which tell how to build methane generators that process compost into methane and fertilizer. So why is methane ranked among the Greens' devils?
For one thing, because oil companies have recently made a habit of bringing up methane deposits deep in the ground by "fracking", and fracking -- by anybody's definition -- is seriously bad news. It consists of pumping raw sewage deep into levels of fractured bedrock so as to force the methane to the surface. This pollutes the water-table and causes earthquakes, as well as uncontrolled methane upwellings. Fracking is an environmental disaster, and far be it from me to oppose putting an end to the wretched practice. Especially when its so easy to create methane, and under far safer conditions.
For another thing, because methane is considered a "greenhouse gas" that traps the sun's heat near the earth and contributes to global warming -- ooops, excuse me: "climate change". But there are also natural processes which have been breaking down methane for ages, particularly lightning, which strikes somewhere on earth at least 200 times per second -- and where lightning passes through methane, it quickly burns/oxydizes the gas into carbon dioxide and water. Carbon dioxide is another natural compound which nature has dealt with likewise for ages, primarily through plants. Plants -- all of them -- inhale carbon dioxide and exhale oxygen. Animals inhale the oxygen and produce carbon dioxide. This exchange has been going on as long as there has been life on earth, and shows no signs of slowing down. The solution to carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is to plant more plants, especially trees, which inhale a lot more of the stuff than smaller plants, and for much longer time.
So, to anyone who passed junior high school biology, the solution to global warming -- ooops, "climate change" -- is to plant a lot of trees, thereby reforesting the continent, and... encouraging lightning. That is, if lightning needs to be encouraged. We could also put up electric arc-generators near every swamp and cow-pasture a helluva lot cheaper than doing without cars, trains, or airplanes, especially if we get serious about developing Thorium nuclear generators.
Now, anybody who has really bothered to study ecology, or biology, or simple chemistry, let alone "atmospheric sciences" would know this. So are the "green wave" Democrats ignorant, or just hypocritical? Why, after the firm defeat of the disastrous Green New Deal are they still pushing any incarnation of that mess?