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151  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Incredibly, Baltimore Advising Police Against Arresting Illegal Aliens on: May 01, 2017, 05:37:59 PM
http://ace.mu.nu/archives/369544.php

May 01, 2017
Incredibly, Baltimore Advising Police Against Arresting Illegal Immigrant Criminals at All, Lest They Be Subsequently Deported
Trump says he's prioritizing illegals who commit other illegal acts for deportation.

If a blue city arrests and prosecutes an illegal, then, they make him more readily subject to deportation.

Solution? Just don't arrest or prosecute illegals for anything other than the most serious violent offenses.

Not only do they have immunity from our immigration laws, they'll now have immunity from almost every criminal law.

Amazing.

The Baltimore State's Attorney’s Office has instructed prosecutors to think twice before charging illegal immigrants with minor, non-violent crimes in response to stepped up immigration enforcement by the Trump administration.
Deputy State’s Attorney Michael Schatzow, in a memo sent to all staff Thursday and obtained by The Sun, wrote that the Justice Department's deportation efforts "have increased the potential collateral consequences to certain immigrants of minor, non-violent criminal conduct."

"In considering the appropriate disposition of a minor, non-violent criminal case, please be certain to consider those potential consequences to the victim, witnesses, and the defendant," Schatzow wrote.

Although the media tells us illegals don't vote, blue city and state Democrats sure act as if they do, and sure seem to think they have a sizable electoral influence.
152  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: 2016 Presidential, Mexico will pay for the wall was a stupid thing to say on: May 01, 2017, 12:46:31 PM
Trump had 18 months to think about how he will do this as he was promising it and has had 100 days to parse what he said any way he wants and tell us how it can be done. He could even tell us he was wrong, gasp!  Instead we have no funding for a wall or even a fence because he never told us it is worth investing our money to do it.

Taxing remittances to Mexico is a easy way to fund the wall, and discourage illegal invaders at the same time.
153  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / The Mask Is Coming Off, And They Don't Care. on: May 01, 2017, 11:11:35 AM
http://ace.mu.nu/archives/369504.php

April 30, 2017
The Mask Is Coming Off, And They Don't Care.
They used to hide it. Hell, the Soviet Union spent billions of rubles on disinformation and supporting organizations that were publicly neutral or soft-left but in reality were fronts for the Soviet's robust efforts to undermine Western Democracies, most of all the United States. But now there seems to be little desire to hide the progressive Left's efforts to destroy democracy and freedom in this country.

Academic Malfeasance: U. Of Arkansas Disinvites Phyllis Chesler is a sordid tale of exactly what many of us suspect the Left does behind closed doors, but here they don't even bother to shut the door, and in fact don't seem to care that the intercom was broadcasting their fascist plots.

Free Speech isn't complicated. Government (here in the form of a state university) has no business regulating speech in any form short of clear and unambiguous calls for violence. But they don't care.

And lest you think they were going after a crypto-conservative, this professor was a member of a loony-tunes hard-left socialist organization called "Hashomer Hatzair," and trust me, they are hard-core. And nuts. But definitely far, far to the left. But she made a fatal error...she is against honor killings and genital mutilation, and that just can't be tolerated, because those are the tools of the Islamists, who are at the vanguard of those who would destroy the West.

The latest speaker to be "disinvited" from an American college is prominent feminist scholar Phyllis Chesler, whose participation in a University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, symposium on honor killing earlier this month was withdrawn days before the event. Behind the cancellation lies a sordid tale involving faculty machinations, threats from a dean, and at least one shattered window. Together, they offer a case study on the intellectual and moral corruption of academe.
And to the surprise of no one with more than two functioning synapses, The neo-fascists of American academia were being supported by some rather more hands-on fascists, the militant Islamists who are quickly becoming embedded in our universities, thanks to lots and lots of oil money.

The university has a chapter of the Muslim Students Association (MSA), a Saudi-founded organization that promotes Islamist propaganda -- including Islamic supremacism, opposition to women's rights, hostility toward America, and anti-Semitism -- on campuses nationwide. That Islamists played a role in cancelling Chesler's talk is revealed in a professor's April 7 email stating that he anticipated "campus Muslim organizations would get involved" and "a Muslim RSO [Registered Student Organization] might be involved too."
Trumped up charges, low-level violence, manipulation of the academic-political process...this is an all-too familiar playbook.
154  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / 100 Days of #TheResistance’s Humiliating Failure on: May 01, 2017, 11:05:26 AM
https://townhall.com/columnists/kurtschlichter/2017/05/01/100-days-of-theresistances-humiliating-failure-n2320453

100 Days of #TheResistance’s Humiliating Failure
Kurt  Schlichter Kurt Schlichter |Posted: May 01, 2017 12:01 AM 

In the first 100 days since Felonia von Pantsuit was not inaugurated, the goofy collection of commie traitors, coastal snobs, and crack-pot weirdoes that hilariously styles itself “#TheResistance” has only managed to successfully resist success. Oh sure, they and the catamite media tried their darnedest but, as Yoda said, “Try not. Do, or do not. There is no try.” And, as Yoda also said, “Chelsea Clinton is best Democrats can do, say you? Kidding me, you are.”

Yeah, after 100 days President Trump has reintroduced the world to Alpha America after eight years of Barack’s fussy betaism, gutted a Schumer-ton of regulations, and broke the Senate Democrats’ spirit by suckering them into a loser play that resulted in Justice Gorsuch today and, I hope, Justice Crazy Conservative Caveman to replace Justice Kennedy this summer. Plus, of course, his two greatest achievements – not being Hillary, and surviving even after being subjected to every slander, lie, and fake news report the gyno-hat left could throw at him.

Really, that #TheResistance could throw at us, because #TheResistance is not really resisting Trump as much as it is resisting us. The elite establishment is outraged that we normals have demanded to govern ourselves rather than begging for scraps from our betters in DC, NY and LA. It wasn’t just that horrible, sick old woman that we rejected; it was them. And by doing so, we “stole” what they see as their birthright to reign sovereign over us. They try to cover up their humiliation with tales of “Russians” and “hacking” because the truth is too painful to face. This election was about the people they sought to rule looking at them and their track record of failure and saying, “Nah, you suck.”

#TheResistance has got nothing. The kook caucus is now slow-walking its insistence that The Donald and Vlad were hanging out in hot tubs playing patty-cake because it became clear that the Obama White House had been spying on the Republicans knowing that they’d never be held to account with President Hillary in office. Oops. That worked out poorly; my advice to Ben Rhodes is, on your first day on the cellblock, take a swing at the biggest guy you can find.

#The Resistance is a mess. Now they’re reduced to fighting for supremacy in their final redoubt, the universities where their fascist intimidation and suppression of speech provides a glimpse of America as it would have been had Trump not been elected. That they are forced into a last-ditch effort to keep power in an institution where their control is total is proof positive of their weakness. And the fact that the only way they have a shot at succeeding is to actively work to silence the voices of non-idiocy is icing on the cake. Their goose-stepping antics on campus are providing America a preview of life under Democrats, and it’s not helping them.

Then there’s the cultural backlash, which is accomplishing … nothing. Polls show readers are less likely to trust the mainstream media than random emails from Nigerian princes. ESPN is dying, in no small part thanks to the campaign to throw tiresome progressive tropes into a network people turn to for some mindless sportsball. No one wants to see the next Keith Olbermann fulminating about “TRUMP’S TREASON!!!!!” between dwarf tosses on The Ocho.


And there is the interchangeable late night crowd whose predictable conformity to the anti-normal agenda has turned Johnny Carson’s former level playing field into a tiresome lefty echo chamber where viral clips of obscure hosts “destroying” Trump provide much needed erotic stimulus to liberal geeks who know not the loving touch of a living human.

The most hilarious part is the super-timely and relevant Handmaid’s Tale miniseries, a festival of imagined oppression porn designed to give frigid liberal women and their neutered male-identifying partners some much-needed bitter jollies. If you’ve never dated a college sophomore who got assigned that stupid book in her feminist lit seminar and now can’t shut up about it, this over-praised dystopian tome imagines a giant Christian conspiracy to create a gay-killing theocracy where women are slaves who are forced to cover their bodies and who are occasionally genitally mutilated. Sure, that scenario sounds familiar (Radical Islam), but I just can’t place it (Radical Islam). Oh, right – it’s totally Donald Trump’s agenda (Radical Islam).

By the way, the not-at-all out-of-touch Democrats responded to Trump’s election by appointing a radical Muslim leftist as second-in-command at the Democratic National Committee. Perhaps that’s part of their outreach program to nail down their support on college campuses, in Manhattan, and among the culturally suicidal. Way to recover Wisconsin, geniuses.


Again, this is the very best #TheResistance can do.

Now, everything is not perfect, but even those issues where Donald Trump has failed to attain his objectives (yet) are not that helpful to #TheResistance. Its “victories” don’t seem very victorious. They got some judge in Hawaii to (temporarily) stop Trump from excluding refugees from various jihadi-infused hellholes, thereby buying the Democrats the next massacre by one of these creeps. They got another judge to (temporarily) allow sanctuary cities to ignore the law, thereby buying the Democrats the next murder by a MS-13 creep. Way to go, Dems. You’re the party of importing Muslim fanatics and illegal alien gangbangers. See you in 2018!

The Democrats have stopped the repeal of Obamacare (temporarily), and have somehow convinced themselves that this will help them. Of course, because they think we’re dumb, they imagine we will forget that it’s called “Obamacare.” It’ll be nice to be rid of it, but not if the replacement is nearly as bad. Here’s the thing – the GOP alone could pass the Obamacare replacement, but it’s being held up by conservatives who want to make it more conservative. Wrap that around your head – for the first time in the history of ever, Republicans are blocking legislation for not being conservative enough. Briar, meet patch.


President Trump has a bunch of nominees pending for key jobs, and rumor has it that Never Trump infiltrators are slow-walking them to purposefully make him look bad. He should stop tolerating it, clean house, and demand his team perform. He could also be appointing judges faster, though rumor has it that a bunch of nominations are coming soon. They will sail through the Senate, and the federal courts will stop being the Democrat’s last gasp defense, all thanks to Harry Reid, who is currently back in Nevada living in a sex dungeon with his NordicTrack/dominatrix.

There’s no indication that the next 100 days, or the 100 days thereafter, will be any better for #TheResistance. It can fume and it can fuss, but slowly and steadily, the normal are winning. As Yoda might have said, “Pathetic you are, for win you do not, despite your media friends and your sex organ sombreros.”
155  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of the Republicans on: May 01, 2017, 10:02:24 AM
Republicans won the the House, the Senate, and now the White House.  100 days in, we have a budget with Republican fingerprints all over it.  The government is funded.  Planned parenthood is funded.  The wall is not.  Obamacare is fully in place and the tax system is the one that Bill Ayers, Saul Alinski and Jeremiah Wright's protege put in place for us, working with Pelosi and Reid.

Elections have consequences?  Depends.

Fcuking worthless.
156  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: National Geographic: now another liberal rag on: April 30, 2017, 12:07:07 PM
Another great magazine or "media" source that is turned into leftist propaganda by Susan Goldberg ?   

http://www.returnofkings.com/110604/why-we-must-boycott-national-geographic-until-they-are-bled-dry

I subscribe to it but I am tired of the progressive onslaught influence in nearly *every* article .
Either about railing at white people , men, climate change, race , and the rest.

I am reading Goldberg's introduction article for this month issue about genius and she turns it into a rant about/against white men .  See for yourself:

http://www.nationalgeographic.com/magazine/2017/05/editors-note-genius-einstein/

National Geographic: now another liberal rag though with beautiful pictures

Now along with reading my medical journals I have to be forced to see liberal dogma on a daily basis.  I don't have to turn on MSNBC or CNN but I can't avoid all this media onslaught for all angles.
I can't get medical updates by listening to talk radio.    cry



https://static.pjmedia.com/instapundit/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/iowahawk_skin_suit_5-28-16-1.jpg

157  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Coffee, is there anything it can't do? on: April 29, 2017, 09:16:58 PM
http://nypost.com/2017/04/28/drinking-coffee-basically-keeps-you-alive/

Yes!
158  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Denver Climate march cancelled due to snow on: April 29, 2017, 05:53:42 PM
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/apr/29/peoples-climate-march-postponed-colorado-due-snow/

The Gore effect.
159  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / L.A. Police Commission Makes Violent Protests Like UC-Berkeley More Likely on: April 28, 2017, 07:40:59 PM
https://pjmedia.com/trending/2017/04/28/l-a-police-commission-makes-violent-protests-like-uc-berkely-more-likely/

L.A. Police Commission Makes Violent Protests Like UC-Berkeley More Likely
BY JACK DUNPHY APRIL 28, 2017

University of California, Berkeley police guard the building where Breitbart News editor Milo Yiannopoulos was to speak. (AP Photo/Ben Margot, File)
Imagine you’re at work one day when your boss calls you into his office. "Uh oh," you think, "this can’t be good." And indeed, despite the gloss he tries to put on it, it isn’t. The company has adopted a new policy, he tells you, one that will change the way you are evaluated in the performance of your duties.

There are new criteria to be used, criteria designed not to measure how well you performed a given task, but rather to inform you that, no matter how well things may have turned out for you and your company, you should have performed it differently. What’s worse, the judgment will be made not by your peers, your superiors, or even by people in your line of work, but rather by people who have never done your job – and couldn’t if their very lives depended on it.

If you didn’t quit on the spot, you would very likely look askance at your boss and this nonsense he’s peddling. And you would return to your office in the discomfiting knowledge that the place is being run by imbeciles.

 
You now have a sense of what it’s like to be a police officer in Los Angeles these days.

I have often written of the politics of Los Angeles, one of the more peculiar aspects of which is that the city’s police department is overseen by five mayoral appointees to the police commission. In addition to setting policy, the commission is vested with the authority to determine the propriety of an officer’s use of deadly force.

In making these determinations, the commissioners weigh not only an officer’s decision to fire his weapon, but also the tactics he used as the incident unfolded. And, even though an honest appraisal of such an incident would presumably require a certain level of experience and expertise, not one of these commissioners has ever served so much as a single day as a police officer.

Last October, I wrote in this space on the current fashion of police “de-escalation,” i.e., the avoidance of using force in restoring order, obtaining compliance, and making arrests. Like all fashions, this one was inspired by ephemeral considerations, to wit, mostly ill-informed opinions on high-profile police use-of-force incidents recently seen in Los Angeles and across the country. The Los Angeles police commissioners, five of the most ill-informed people you’re ever likely to find in one room, recently codified this fashion in the form of a new use-of-force policy for the LAPD.


Latest Fad in Policing: "De-escalation"
In truth, the new policy (PDF) is not at all a drastic departure from the one it replaces. The changes amount to no more than a few words, these intended to emphasize the desire for alternatives, if any are available, to the use of deadly force. So it is not the policy itself that officers find objectionable. Rather, it is the knowledge that their fate may one day rest in the hands of the people whose idealistic notions of police work cannot be squared with how police work is actually performed.

In my October piece, I linked to this Los Angeles Times article concerning the September 2015 shooting of Norma Guzman, who was killed while approaching officers with an 8-inch knife. Though LAPD Chief Charlie Beck ruled the shooting to be “in-policy,” the commission disagreed, arguing that the first officer to fire on Guzman should have “redeployed” to a safer place.

And this is where the commissioners’ lack of real-world experience becomes obvious and alarming. They disapproved of the outcome, so they propose that different actions by the officer would have resulted in a better one. But in doing so they fail to consider what might have happened had the officer done what they think he should have.


 
In the video accompanying the Times’s story, we can see that the passenger officer alights from the police car and apparently spots Guzman walking toward him. He draws his weapon and, we are told, orders her to stop and drop the knife. She fails to comply and is shot when she gets to within about ten feet of the officer.

The driver officer, having exited the police car and come around the rear, also fires as he sees Guzman approaching his partner. In the commissioners’ imagination, the passenger officer should have distanced himself from Guzman before firing. But consider that in doing so, he would also have distanced himself from his partner, whose view of Guzman was momentarily blocked by the police SUV.

One can easily imagine a scenario in which the passenger officer “re-deploys” only to expose his unwary partner to the danger posed by Guzman. What’s more, this scenario might easily have resulted in Guzman being between the officers, thus creating the danger of deadly cross-fire.

What’s more, had the passenger officer “re-deployed,” the commission’s euphemism for “run away,” he may have violated the LAPD policy that prohibits partners from separating. Had he done so and left his partner to face Guzman alone, the commission surely would have found fault with either officer or both if Guzman had been shot.

It’s one thing for police officers to critique the actions of their peers with the aim of improving safety, it’s quite another to have five political appointees with no relevant experience taking months to evaluate decisions officers must make in an instant. No less authority than the U.S. Supreme Court has made this clear, ruling in Graham v. Connor (1989) that “the ‘reasonableness’ of a particular use of force must be judged from the perspective of a reasonable officer on the scene, rather than with the 20/20 vision of hindsight.”

UC Berkeley's Police Chief Offers Terrible Excuses for Her Failure
In the current climate, hindsight on police matters abounds, and the acuity is most often less than 20/20, with the L.A. police commission perhaps in need of a long white cane and a seeing-eye dog. And with all this myopic second-guessing comes the apparent reluctance among some police managers to uphold the law whenever there is a risk of a violent encounter with those who are breaking it. The most notable recent example can be found on the campus of the University of California, in Berkeley, where the campus police chief so disgraced herself at the Milo Yiannopoulos event earlier this year.

Following that disgrace, I offered some advice to her and her campus overseers on how to handle a visit to the campus by Ann Coulter, who was scheduled to speak on April 27. Already the campus officials have embarrassed themselves once more, first by rescinding the invitation to Coulter, then by rescheduling her appearance to a date during the week before final examinations.

In first canceling the event, university officials said it was “not possible to assure that the event could be held successfully — or that the safety of Ms. Coulter, the event sponsors, audience and bystanders could be adequately protected.” In this they admit their own ineptitude and their unwillingness to accept the fact that in order keep these people safe they may have to use force against those who threaten them.

It’s quite simple: Announce that the law will be enforced, then do it. Perhaps this is too much to ask these days.
160  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: 1Q slower growth on: April 28, 2017, 11:54:14 AM
The deep state may well be trying to bring the crash on Trump's watch.



"The economy barely grew, expanding at an annual rate of only 0.7 percent."

Let's see...  Keep Obamacare, the biggest tax and regulation takeover in history, in place.  Keep the Obama, Reid, Pelosi tax system fully in place.  Watch Democrat Fed Chair Yellen raise interest rates based on this 'robust recovery' she sees.  And see economic growth hit zero.

What's that?  Did I just hear Brian Wesbury say Doug was right?? 
161  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Alexander Van Der Bellen suggested all women must one day wear headscarves on: April 28, 2017, 11:18:41 AM
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4452774/Austrian-president-women-wear-headscarves.html

Austrian president says that all women will one day have to wear headscarves to fight 'rampant Islamophobia'
Alexander Van Der Bellen suggested all women must one day wear headscarves
Comments come after Austria government banned full-face veil in January
By Thomas Burrows for MailOnline
PUBLISHED: 13:06 EDT, 27 April 2017 | UPDATED: 13:34 EDT, 27 April 2017
 
'Besides that, not only Muslim women. Every woman can wear a headscarf. And if it goes on - and I am already on the next question - with actual rampant Islamophobia, the day will come that we must ask all women to wear a headscarf.

'All out of solidarity with those who have to on religious grounds.'

Mr Van der Bellen suggested all women should wear a headscarf in solidarity with Muslims   +1
Mr Van der Bellen suggested all women should wear a headscarf in solidarity with Muslims

Austria banned the burqa, niqab and other face-covering veils earlier this year.

The measure was introduced by the ruling Social Democratic party (SPÖ) and the centre-right Austrian People’s party (ÖVP) to prevent the collapse of their coalition government.

By doing so, they followed in the footsteps of France, which became the first European country to ban the full-face veil officially in 2010.

Bans are also in place in Belgium and some parts of Switzerland.   

Mr Van der Bellen had outlined a vision markedly different from that offered during campaigning by his right-wing rival Mr Hofer, who he defeated in December.

Hofer had campaigned on a law-and-order platform in line with his Freedom Party's opposition to Muslim immigration, its focus on Austrians first and its depiction of the European Union as an out-of-touch institutio.

In contrast, the left-leaning Van der Bellen rejected nationalism in favour of a 'common Europe as a project of peace.'

He urged equal treatment for all Austrians, whether 'their families live here for generations or not...whether they love men or women, and whether they are men or women.'

The presidency is a largely symbolic post.

But Van der Bellen's victory was welcomed by established European political parties fearful of another populist victory after Donald Trump's shock presidential win in the US.



Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4452774/Austrian-president-women-wear-headscarves.html
162  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Leftist Fascism Reaches New Lows in Blatant Thuggery, as "Mainstream" Left Cover on: April 27, 2017, 07:48:13 PM
http://ace.mu.nu/archives/369500.php

April 27, 2017
Leftist Fascism Reaches New Lows in Blatant Thuggery, as "Mainstream" Left Covers Up for Them and Blames the Right
This is the post I delayed because I didn't know how to write it.

I won't write it. I'll just link the stories.

I will just repeat my urgent warning and threat: The rules you make for us are the rules you also make for yourselves. If you're comfortable with that, then I suggest you begin making serious preparations for the hell you are determined to unleash on this once-peaceful country.

Leftist "Anti-Fascist" Criminals Threaten to Attack and Drag Off Any Republicans in Portland's Annual Rose Parade; City Cancels Event. I don't know if they'll also be mounting a serious investigation into who made these threats and then prosecuting them to the worst the law will allow. I suspect they'll do neither.

Here's Althouse on it.

The New York Times previously blamed Milo and the rightwing for making the leftwing riot and physically attack people in Berkeley. They now do so again in the case of threats against the safety of author Ann Coulter.

Ms. Coulter, the acid-penned conservative writer, canceled a planned appearance on Thursday after the political organizations that invited her rescinded their support over fears of violence. "It's a sad day for free speech," she said.
Howard Dean and Sarah Silverman are "acid-tongued." (Not penned; they don't write.) If rightwing criminals threatend to assault them over speech, would the New York Times be searching for what they have recently called "false equivalency" between the two competing sides-- one side that says they have the right to speak without fear of assault, and another side that says if they speak they'll be physically attacked?

Jim Ruttenberg specifically called for an end of this practice of seeking "balance" were there was none -- in the New York Times itself. Of course, he meant that in the sense of not giving "balance" to conservative claims when leftist claims were so obviously the truth and All Conservatives Are Liars.

Notice they've gone back to seeking "balance" when the obvious malefactors are their fellow violent, fascist progressives.

But across the country, conservatives like her are eagerly throwing themselves into volatile situations like the one in Berkeley, emboldened by a backlash over what many Americans see as excessive political correctness, a president who has gleefully taken up their fight, and liberals they accuse of trying to censor any idea they disagree with.
The situation adds up to a striking reversal in the culture wars, with the left now often demanding that offensive content be excised from public discourse and those who promote it boycotted and shunned.

A striking reversal? "Now"?

The left has been doing this with increasing militancy since the 1980s.

How fucking old and out of touch do you have to be to call this "striking reversal" as happening "now"?

It has happened and happened and grown worse every year precisely because the alleged "responsible voices" of the left, who could be expected to chastise their misbehaving correligionists and tell them to stop, have in fact covered up for them every step of the way, thereby tacitly approving of them and encouraging them to go further.

Remember the "Climate of Hate," where it was posited that somehow Sarah Palin had inspired a deranged man obsessed with the mind-control patterns of regular English grammar to shoot a Representative who didn't take his theories about grammar seriously?

If you believe in a "Climate of Hate" encouraging violence from more excitable members of a political cult, then you must also believe that the left's endless justification and excuse-making for violence -- when not openly calling for it-- creates a Climate of Hate on the left for visiting violence on the right.

You can't deny that. It's non-deniable.

What the Times and the left are doing, therefore, is simply supporting the Climate of Hate, and hoping to cause violence. So long as it's directed against the right people.

The rest of the article (so far as I could read) is less egregious than that opening -- claiming the victim provoked the attacker -- but that rhetorical excuse for political violence is quite enough.

I'm pretty sure that if Rush Limbaugh defended, justified, and make excuses for right wing gang violence the Times would not say the left "provoked" them by "throwing themselves" into "volatile situations" (like state-funded college campuses).

The mayor of Berkeley -- who liked a By Any Means Necessary Facebook posts (BAMN being one of the violent groups, as their name would imply), and who has ordered police to stand down and let BAMN and antifa attack citizens at random -- says that both antifa and the right which baits people into assaulting them are mutually to blame, and Mother Jones, naturally enough, agrees.

Keep your eye open for when Mother Jones speaks in the passive voice -- no human actor specified -- and when it gets suddenly specific about a human actor involved in an outcome.

On the eve of what was shaping up to be the latest in a string of violent clashes in Berkeley, California--
When a mugger attacks a citizen for his money, it's a "clash," but usually we do note who criminally attacked the other to start this "clash."

--between militant far-right and far-left activists,
Who's throwing M80s and bricks into crowds? Eh, doesn't matter. Niggling detail. There's a Higher Truth to be discovered.

-- Mayor Jesse Arreguin vowed that police would act aggressively to quash illegal behavior. "Berkeley is about the free exchange of ideas, but that's not what's happening," he said in an interview at City Hall late Wednesday.
Why? Who is it who is stopping the free exchange of ideas -- Ann Coulter, or the terrorists who threatened to harm her for speaking her ideas?

"So I think going forward we are going to need to have a more visible police presence at these incidents and intervene."
A confession that the standing orders have been to let Antifa attack whoever it likes, and that the only problem he sees her is that the attacked have begun counter-attacking.

Protesters who engage in violence or vandalism, Arreguin warned, will be arrested and prosecuted "to the fullest extent of the law."
Which ones? You only arrested one guy at the Milo riot. I have a feeling you'll be arresting more of the attacked than the attacking.

Ever since a planned speech at the University of California-Berkeley in February by far-right media provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos was canceled amid a rash of violence and property destruction,

Amidst a rash of violence and property destruction which self-generated itself with no identifiable human agents behind it.

.... Berkeley has become a prime target for right-wing groups mobilizing under the banner of "free speech" ...
Ah. The right-wing is targeting Berkeley. Under the banner of quote-unquote "free speech."

...and trolling political opponents with bigoted rhetoric.
They can't name who is committing the violence and property damage, but they're Johnny on the Spot when it comes to Naming and Shaming those guilty of "trolling."

Alt-right and other far-right demonstrators have repeatedly scuffled with antifa counterprotesters in the city, most recently on April 15, when protracted brawls led to the arrest of 20 people.
They mutually "scuffled." No one, say, began attempting to storm the state where permitted speakers were legally speaking.

They add this, after noting Ann Coulter cancelled her appearance, but "fanned the flames" of wishing to speak without being physically assaulted:

alt-right agitators have vowed to cause mayhem whether she shows or not.
Again, Mother Jones finds its voice in being able to identify the trouble-makers, a task it found strangely elusive when it came to BAMN and antifa violence earlier.

And is antifa also vowing to battle in the streets?

I guess we'll never really know. It's just these alt-righters, I guess.
163  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Murders Concentrated in Five Percent of Counties on: April 27, 2017, 07:38:59 PM
"Like anything that doesn't fit with their narrative, they ignore it."

John Lott also has a narrative, "More Guns, Less Crime",
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/More_Guns,_Less_Crime,
but his data comes from good sources and the conclusions he draws are valid.

It's a burden on us that almost all important points conservative are counter-intuitive.

Guns don't cause murder.  Wealth doesn't cause it.  Poverty doesn't even cause it.  
Murder, at least when it happens as an epidemic, is a culture.

“Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

This is known as "bad luck.”


― Robert A. Heinlein

___________________________________________________________________________________________________

http://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/263495/curse-violent-crime-democrat-run-cities-discover-networks

THE CURSE OF VIOLENT CRIME IN DEMOCRAT-RUN CITIES
And how one city broke that curse.
July 14, 2016 

America's ten most dangerous cities—as measured by federal crime statistics—have one highly notable feature in common: All are led politically by Democratic mayors. Most, in fact, have been controlled by Democrats for a very long time. For example, Detroit, which in 2015 ranked as the nation's most dangerous city, has not had a Republican mayor since 1961. The second most dangerous city in 2015 was Oakland, California, a Democrat stronghold since 1977. Third was Memphis, in Democratic hands since 1991. Fourth was St. Louis, which has been led exclusively by Democratic mayors since 1949. Fifth was Cleveland, where no Republican has been mayor since 1989. Sixth was Baltimore, Democrat-led since 1967. Seventh was Milwaukee, which has elected only Democratic mayors since 1908. Eighth was Birmingham, which has been Democrat-run since 1975. Ninth was Newark, a Democrat bastion since 1933. And tenth was Kansas City, Missouri, which has not seen a Republican mayor in a quarter-century.

New York City, which in the early 1990s transitioned away from nearly half a century of Democratic leadership, serves as a case study not only of how left-wing law-enforcement policies helped breed crime and chaos for a long period of time, but also how the cessation of those policies caused crime to plummet almost instantly.

From 1946 through 1993, New York was led, in succession, by the following Democratic mayors: William O'Dwyer, Vincent Impellitteri, Robert Wagner, John Lindsay, Abraham Beame, Ed Koch, and David Dinkins. Under the stewardship of these men, the city's crime rates rose sharply and consistently, as reflected most starkly in its homicide statistics. In 1960, some 482 homicides occurred within the confines of New York's five boroughs. By 1970, that figure had risen to 1,117. In 1980, it was 1,814. The apex was reached under Mayor Dinkins in 1990, when 2,245 people lost their lives to violence. During the ensuing three years of Dinkins' mayoralty, the city's homicide totals were 2,154, then 1,995, and finally 1,946.

Throughout his four years in office, Mayor Dinkins repeatedly demonstrated weakness and indecision in dealing with criminals. In some cases, he seemed to be openly at odds with the city's police force. For instance, in the early 1990s a Dinkins administration brochure informed its readers that there “won't be peace” until the police stop running “young men of color … off the streets.”

Dinkins' ineffectiveness in dealing with crime had a profound effect on the quality of life in New York, as the incidence of violence in the city reached an all-time high. In 1989, before Dinkins took office, New York was ranked seventh in the Places Rated Almanac, which rates cities for their overall livability. By 1993, as Dinkins' term drew to a close, the city had slipped to 105th in the rankings. A 1993 poll of New Yorkers found that 59% felt that life in the city had gotten worse on the mayor's watch, while just 8% thought it had improved.

Republican Rudolph Giuliani replaced Dinkins as mayor in 1994 and quickly transformed New York into the safest big city in America. He did this chiefly by increasing the NYPD's manpower from 28,000 officers to 40,000, and adopting a zero-tolerance approach to crime-fighting. Toward that end, Giuliani hired William Bratton as his police chief. Bratton was a proponent of the “broken windows” criminological theory which contends that maintaining urban environments in a well-ordered condition—and clamping down on petty crimes—ultimately helps prevent not only low-level vandalism, but also the commission of more serious offenses. Thus Bratton instructed police to more strictly enforce existing laws against such relatively minor infractions as subway-fare evasion, public drinking, public urination, and shakedown operations by “squeegee men” demanding payment in exchange for their unsolicited wiping of the windshields on cars stopped at red lights.


 
Another vital component of Giuliani's crime-fighting approach was the use of COMPSTAT, an organizational management tool that employs Geographic Information Systems to map crime and identify specific problem areas. In weekly meetings, NYPD executives met with local precinct commanders to discuss the problems revealed by COMPSTAT and devise strategies to deal with them.

The results of Giuliani's efforts were extraordinary, as evidenced by the fact that during his eight years in office, the incidence of homicide in the city fell dramatically, from 1,946 in Dinkins' final year as mayor, to 1,561 in 1994, to 1,177 in 1995, to 983 in 1996, to 770 in 1997, to 633 in 1998, to 671 in 1999, to 673 in 2000, to 649 in 2001.

When Republican Michael Bloomberg succeeded Giuliani as mayor in 2002, he continued the same anti-crime strategies as his predecessor. As a result, homicide rates in the city fell even lower, with totals of 587 in 2002; 597 in 2003; 570 in 2004; 539 in 2005; 596 in 2006; 496 in 2007; 523 in 2008; 471 in 2009; 536 in 2010; 515 in 2011; 419 in 2012; and 335 in 2013.

When Democrat Bill de Blasio succeeded Bloomberg as mayor of New York in 2014, he appointed William Bratton as his chief of police. Despite some changes, most of the Giuliani-Bloomberg policies remained more-or-less in force, and New York's homicide rate stayed at about the level at which it had been when Bloomberg left office.

Those who benefited most, by far, from the policies put in place by Giuliani (and later Bloomberg), were the black and Hispanic residents of such traditionally high-crime areas as Brooklyn's 75th Precinct, Bedford-Stuyvesant's 81st Precinct, and Harlem's 28th Precinct. Indeed, blacks and Hispanics accounted for 79% of the decline in homicide victims citywide between 1993 and 2011. Manhattan Institute Fellow Heather Mac Donald estimates that “more than 10,000 black and Hispanic males avoided the premature death that would have been their fate had New York's homicide rate remained at its early-1990s apex.” Also between 1993 and 2011, the number of rapes that occurred annually in New York City declined by 54.8%; robberies fell by 80.3%; felony assaults dropped by 57.8%; and burglaries were reduced by 84.6%. This means that many tens of thousands of black and Hispanic would-be victims were spared the anguish associated with those crimes as well.
164  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Murders Concentrated in Five Percent of Counties on: April 27, 2017, 04:49:29 PM

"areas with the highest gun ownership rates have low murder rates"

"counties with zero murders are the counties with by far the highest gun ownership rates"

http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2013/05/09/why-own-a-gun-protection-is-now-top-reason/

Guns don't cause murder?  What do leftist, science deniers say about that?

Like anything that doesn't fit with their narrative, they ignore it.
165  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Activist finds left's silence on genital mutilation case dismaying on: April 27, 2017, 12:28:06 PM
http://www.jewishworldreview.com/0417/kass042717.php3

Activist finds left's silence on genital mutilation case dismaying

image: http://www.jewishworldreview.com/images/kass.jpg

By John Kass
Published April 27, 2017




Imagine what the American left would do if conservative Republican Christians engaged in a barbaric practice to mutilate little girls, to kill off their sexual desire while leaving them fertile when they come of age.

American feminists and their allies of the left would be outraged. Op-ed writers from establishment newspapers would seethe, and a few, I suspect, would draw some link to the ascension of Donald Trump and angry white men.

We'd witness a social media firestorm condemning the act, with tweets and hashtags.

But the other day, a Michigan physician was charged in a federal indictment for allegedly conspiring to perform female genital mutilation. It is a practice that predates Islam, but one that remains prevalent in many North African and some Middle Eastern predominantly Muslim countries.

In the Michigan case, the alleged victims are two 7-year-old girls.

American feminism has been mostly quiet about the girls. And the left in general has not engaged. It is so quiet that you can't even hear crickets hiding under the leaves. But silence can often hold the truth of things.

"It's all so very sad and depressing. I find this silence extremely painful," renowned feminist and activist Ayaan Hirsi Ali told me in an interview. "It's been inculcated into them (the left) not to engage.

"The left can easily and comfortably condemn the misogyny of white men, but not of men of color, not of Muslims," Hirsi Ali said. "They are afraid of being shunned. They're afraid of being put into a basket of deplorables. So they're silent.

"And what are they being silent about? They are being silent about the mutilation of young girls."

Hirsi Ali was born in Somalia. She was subjected to genital mutilation. Now an American citizen, she runs the AHA Foundation, which is dedicated to protecting young girls from mutilations, honor killings and forced marriages. You can find more about them at their website, http://www.theahafoundation.org.

Her group estimates that in the U.S., some 500,000 women and young girls have suffered genital mutilation or are at risk of the practice. The federal case in Michigan is the first of its kind. Female genital mutilation (FGM) became illegal under a federal law in 1996, but at present, 26 states do not outlaw the practice, Hirsi Ali said.

"I come from Somalia, and 98 percent of Somali girls, Egyptians, Sudanese, this happens to them," Hirsi Ali said. "In Muslim communities there is the demand that women, girls, should be virgins and a woman's sexuality is to be controlled, and this is an effective and brutal way of doing that."

And what of the immigrant groups here in America?

"It's naive to think that in some communities, traditions like this are going to be left at the airport," Hirsi Ali said. "These traditions are not left at the airport."

According to the federal indictment of Dr. Jumana Nagarwala, who has denied the charges against her, the two girls were brought to Michigan by their parents from Minnesota in February. Their genitals were mutilated in accordance with an ancient and barbaric custom known throughout Muslim Africa and parts of the Islamic Middle East, to remove sexual desire and, therefore, make them fitting brides in the eyes of some.

According to the United Nations, the practice isn't confined to Muslim North Africa. Some Egyptian Christian Copts are also said to engage in it.

Dr. Nagarwala's attorney, Shannon Smith, said her client gave the material she had removed from the girls to the parents for burial, following a custom practiced by a small sect of Indian Muslims known as the Dawoodi Bohra.

"This practice does take place in a small amount of countries where Muslims reside, but not all Muslim countries," Dawud Walid, executive director of Michigan's Council on American Islamic Relations, told me by phone.

"Whether it is Islamic or not is a moot point. Obeying the law of the land is Islamic and overtly violating the law of the land is not Islamic," said Walid. "And we obey the law."

I left repeated messages for the National Organization for Women's Michigan chapter, but they did not return my calls or emails.

Another aspect of the politics of all this is the decision by The New York Times -- the arbiter of all things liberal in America -- not to use the term female genital mutilation.

The Times opted for an Orwellian phrase, "genital cutting," not to spare the Victorian sensibilities of its readers, but because it is politically palatable to the left.

But the United Nations uses "female genital mutilation." The World Health Organization uses "female genital mutilation."

It is not merely a cut. You can cut your fingernail. This is mutilation for a cultural purpose, to rob women of sexual joy and render them as breeders.

All of this -- the application of a politically correct filter by The New York Times, the avoidance of the issue by the left, even the destruction of female sexuality by ancient cultures -- is political.

And who suffers? Political wits and activists don't suffer. Girls suffer.

The number of women worldwide estimated to have been subject to female genital mutilation has reached 200 million in some studies. Many thousands of young girls develop infections and die.

"The decision of The New York Times illustrates the terrible trade-off they've made," said Hirsi Ali. "They're concerned about politics, about protecting a group versus the individual rights of the child or the woman.

"Groups don't have rights. Individuals do. Individuals have bodies. You can lock them up, cause them pain, and break their spirit. And so the talk is about groups and identity politics. When what is being done is actually mutilating the genitals of a little girl."


Read more at http://www.jewishworldreview.com/0417/kass042717.php3
166  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: WSJ: Macron vs. Le Pen on: April 27, 2017, 09:20:16 AM
Not wild about Marine's economics , , ,

Likewise. I find myself pulling for her to shake up the system but I don't agree with her economics.

Yes, but the French love them some socialisme. The economic damage means they just haven't tried enough.
167  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Trump Administration, Coulter, Build the wall on: April 27, 2017, 08:40:51 AM
Yes.

No one voted for Trump because of the “Access Hollywood” tape. They voted for him because of his issues; most prominently, his promise to build “a big beautiful wall.” And who’s going to pay for it? MEXICO!
You can’t say that at every campaign rally for 18 months and then not build a wall.
Do not imagine that a Trump double-cross on the wall will not destroy the Republican Party. Oh, we’ll get them back. No, you won’t. Trump wasn’t a distraction: He was the last chance to save the GOP.
Millions of Americans who hadn’t voted in 30 years came out in 2016 to vote for Trump. If he betrays them, they’ll say, “You see? I told you. They’re all crooks.”
No excuses will work. No fiery denunciations of the courts, the Democrats or La Raza will win them back, even if Trump comes up with demeaning Twitter names for them.
It would be an epic betrayal — worse than Bush betraying voters on “no new taxes.” Worse than LBJ escalating the Vietnam War. There would be nothing like it in the history of politics.
He’s the commander in chief! He said he’d build a wall. If he can’t do that, Trump is finished, the Republican Party is finished, and the country is finished.
http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/04/26/ann-coulter-not-building-wall-government-shutdown/
168  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / A Chilling Threat of Political Violence in Portland on: April 26, 2017, 10:00:57 PM
https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/04/a-chilling-threat-of-political-violence-in-portland/524334/

A Chilling Threat of Political Violence in Portland
Activists threatened to drag local Republicans off a parade route if they weren’t excluded from a local celebration. Organizers cancelled the entire event in response.


A protester holds a sign during a demonstration in Seattle.Ted S. Warren / AP

CONOR FRIEDERSDORF  2:31 PM ET 

On the day after Donald Trump was inaugurated, perhaps 3 million Americans took to the streets in peaceful protest to register their opposition. When news of his travel ban broke, I stood at LAX watching Angelenos sing the Star Spangled Banner and Amazing Grace. Across the nation, peaceful protest against President Trump continues. But a violent fringe has been using Trump’s rise as a justification for political violence, as if his authoritarian impulses justify authoritarianism from his opponents.

This tiny faction knows that most of their compatriots on the left are committed to nonviolence, so they frame their aggressive actions as a narrow exception to the rule.

Most famously, they insisted that it was okay, or even righteous, to punch white supremacist Richard Spencer because he was “a Nazi.” That position impels the debate down a slippery slope. And now, activists in Oregon caused the cancellation of the 82nd Avenue of Roses Parade, a community event in the southeast quadrant of Portland, by threatening to forcibly drag “fascists” off the parade route if they weren’t excluded.




Who exactly did they want removed from the parade? The local Republican Party of Multonomah County. The Oregonian reports on the threat the leftists sent to organizers:

"You have seen how much power we have downtown and that the police cannot stop us from shutting down roads so please consider your decision wisely," the anonymous email said, telling organizers they could cancel the Republican group's registration or else face action from protesters.
The email went on to speculate that right-wing extremists would march among the Republicans, and warned, “we will have two hundred or more people rush into the parade into the middle and drag and push those people out as we will not give one inch to groups who espouse hatred toward lgbt, immigrants, people of color or others.”

A local alt-weekly quoted from a Facebook event page describing a perhaps different planned protest––its authors say that they did not send the threatening email––which stated:

The fascists know that we'll keep shutting their marches down, they are now planning to march within other parades to protect their message of hate and white supremacy - it WON'T work. Nazis will not march through Portland.

The group we're disrupting is #67. It is registered to the Multnomah County Republicans, but these infiltrators are the same folks from Lake Oswego, Salem, Vancouver, and even Berkeley. These are the folks that attacked a woman at PDX, they harassed Latinx parishioners with slurs and threats at a local church, they spew hate, threaten and curse young women at women's health clinics. They seek to intimidate and harass our Latinx, Muslim and LGBTQ+ neighbors and friends. Their Trump flags, their red MAGA hats and their hate group badges are all intended to normalize support for an orange man who bragged about sexually harassing women and who is waging a war of hate, racism and prejudice against our Muslim, Latinx, Black and Native neighbors. They will attempt to march from the Eastport Plaza to Yamhill, but nazis will not march through our city.
If you missed that, one reason these protesters cite as justification for stopping Republicans on a parade route is that they will otherwise “normalize support” for a sitting president.


Organizers caved. “Following threats of violence during the Parade by multiple groups planning to demonstrate at the event, we can no longer guarantee the safety of our community and have made the difficult decision to cancel the Parade,” they stated.

The local GOP put out its own statement. It reads in part:

The Multnomah County Republican Party (MCRP) has for many years participated in the Parade, and calls upon the Mayor, the Police Chief, and the District Attorney to take action against this criminal conspiracy to commit crimes of riot and disorderly conduct in violation of Oregon law.

Under former Mayor Charlie Hales the City allowed this cancer of lawlessness to grow to the point where its leaders are now bragging, like some sort of comic book characters, that ‘the police cannot stop us’. But this is no laughing matter. The participation of political parties in public events like the Parade is not only an American tradition, but also reflects the most fundamental constitutional rights of free speech and freedom of assembly.

The road to fascism begins with armed gangs of thugs using violence to shut down opposing points of view. The question now is whether the City of Portland will be complicit in such conduct. We hope the City’s new leadership has the courage to respond to these threats appropriately.
So long as threats of violence succeed in causing events to get shut down by their risk-averse organizers, more threats will be made. One wonders who this faction on the left will next label a Nazi or a fascist in order to justify their own use of fascistic tactics.
169  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / The New York Times Style Guide to Alternative Cultural Practices on: April 26, 2017, 01:57:33 PM
http://thedailychrenk.com/2017/04/26/nyt-style-guide-alt-culture/


The New York Times Style Guide to Alternative Cultural Practices
Posted on April 26, 2017 by Arthur Chrenkoff


“The New York Times” decided it will now refer to “female genital mutilation” as “genital cutting”, a term that brings to mind something as harmless as male circumcision (which is why “female genital circumcision” is just as misleading).

“There’s a gulf between the Western (and some African) advocates who campaign against the practice and the people who follow the rite, and I felt the language used widened that chasm,” NYT science and health editor Celia Dugger explained Friday. She also said the widely used term (FGM) is “culturally loaded” in the explanation, which came as a result of inquiries from The Daily Caller News Foundation regarding a reporter’s decision to use the term “cutting” in a recent story about a doctor in Michigan.

We couldn’t possibly have “culturally loaded” terms in case they “widen the chasm” between the supporters and opponents of certain practices – or right and wrong, as some unsophisticated commentators would call it. All cultures are, after all, equal, so we shouldn’t be judgmental.

Because here at The Daily Chrenk we always try to be helpful to our mainstream media colleagues, we prepared this handy style guide to avoid other “culturally loaded” terms in print and broadcast:

Sati – post-marital grief immolation

Infanticide – fourth trimester termination

Female infanticide – gender-determined parenting

Wife beating – hands-on relationship counselling

Cannibalism – hard paleo (also: human protein supplementation)

Honour killing – permanent grounding

Spousal rape – consent-alternative marital intimacy

Scalping – complete ritual depilation

Killing old and infirm – extreme palliative care

Grooming underage girls – community-based, practical sex ed program

Child marriage – age disparate matching

Cousin marriage – kin inter-relationship enrichment

Human sacrifice – spiritually-motivated population reduction

Jihad – faith community self-defence

Slavery – compulsory, exclusive services contract

Sexual slavery – compulsory intimacy arrangement

Stoning adulterers – petrological divorce procedure

Throwing homosexuals off buildings – vertical monosexuality enforcement

Polygamy – concurrent monogamy

Child labour – premature apprenticeship

Headhunting – per capita loss (also: non-literal recruitment)

Torture – alternative investigation aid

Inbreeding – reproductive autarky

Witch-hunting – non-Carthesian threat reduction

The Daily Chrenk wishes you happy, chasm-reducing reading. And remember: we don’t judge!
170  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Elizabeth "Forked Tongue" Warren gets one right on: April 26, 2017, 12:32:48 AM

Runs with broken clocks!
171  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: "BART takeover robbery: 40 to 60 teens swarm train, rob weekend riders." on: April 25, 2017, 06:56:31 PM
"BART takeover robbery: 40 to 60 teens swarm train, rob weekend riders."
"because the people who are seen committing obvious crimes appear to be minors, the video cannot be put up on line."

I've heard of protecting the privacy of minors but never above trying to solve a crime.  If a "teenager" hasn't seen a parent in 2-3 years, are they really still minors?

I wonder if this is another case of white on black crime or Christian on Muslim crime that we so far too often see.  Lutherans out wilding??


Can't let the truth get in the way of the left's narrative.
172  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / "BART takeover robbery: 40 to 60 teens swarm train, rob weekend riders." on: April 25, 2017, 01:34:29 PM
http://althouse.blogspot.com/2017/04/bart-takeover-robbery-40-to-60-teens.html

April 24, 2017
"BART takeover robbery: 40 to 60 teens swarm train, rob weekend riders."

There's surveillance video of this incident, but according to the BART spokesperson, because the people who are seen committing obvious crimes appear to be minors, the video cannot be put up on line.
The juveniles “committed multiple strong-arm robberies of bags and cell phones,” said a police summary prepared after the incident. “At least two victims suffered head/facial injuries requiring medical attention.”...

The attack was quick, police reported, and the teenagers were able to retreat from the station and vanish into the surrounding East Oakland neighborhood before BART officers could respond.

I can't believe they won't/can't make the video available so these criminals can be caught. Is that really the law in California?
Posted by Ann Althouse at 6:02 PM 
Tags: crime, law, surveillance, teenagers
173  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Why is this country starving? on: April 23, 2017, 09:24:59 AM

There is nothing socialism can't fcuk up.
174  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: North and South Korea on: April 22, 2017, 06:37:07 PM

Disinfo, IMHO.
175  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Qualia on: April 20, 2017, 09:33:10 PM
http://neurohacker.com/qualia/


My son is intrigued by this.  Any comments?

My money is on this being a ripoff.
176  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / It's not a lie, it's professional journalism! on: April 18, 2017, 11:00:58 PM
http://dailycaller.com/2017/04/18/ap-changes-fresno-shooters-words-from-allahu-akbar-removes-islam-reference/

You can't handle the truth!
177  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / The Left’s Embrace Of Political Violence Backfires In Berkeley on: April 17, 2017, 05:08:41 PM
The Left’s Embrace Of Political Violence Backfires In Berkeley

SCOTT GREER
Deputy Editor
11:39 PM 04/16/2017
3469235
Berkeley, California, descended into total chaos Saturday as right-wingers and left-wingers engaged in massive brawls throughout the college town.

The violent scenes captured the attention of cable news and social media, and inevitably led to questions as to who should take the blame for the ordeal.

Liberals on Twitter were quick to point the finger at the “alt-right” for inciting a riot, with a few brave tweeters inevitably pointing the finger at Russia for the violence.




(Note: this guy is not actually Mark Cuban.)

The one problem with this way of thinking is that it overlooks the fact that all the Trump supporters did was organize a pro-free speech event — they didn’t force the “anti-fascists” (antifa) to show up and start assaulting attendees.

This is the third time in two months something like this has happened in Berkeley. The difference is this time the Right came out in stronger numbers and forced the leftists to flee the scene.

In spite of the humiliating defeat, the Left is fully responsible for the political violence that occurred this weekend.

Remember when there was a huge debate over whether it was OK to punch a Nazi?

During an Inauguration Day riot back in January, white nationalist Richard Spencer was punched in the face by one of the many black-masked anarchists marauding through the streets of Washington D.C.

While most liberals were quick to condemn the property damage done by the antifa, they couldn’t resist the urge to fervently cheer the punching of a Nazi. (RELATED: Trump Is President, And Now The Left Justifies Political Violence)

A week after the punch seen around the internet, Hollywood gave a wild standing ovation when actor David Harbour said at the Screen Actors Guild Awards that those who oppress the “weak and disenfranchised” need a punch in the face. (RELATED: Hollywood Gives Standing Ovation For Punching Political Foes At Awards Show)

The message was loud and clear from America’s entertainers and lefty pundits: it’s OK to punch those you deem to be a “Nazi,” and we’ll cheer it on.

However, the Left’s definition for who constitutes a “Nazi” can extend to anyone who’s right of The New York Times editorial board, which means that pretty much all Trump supporters, conservatives and anyone who gets in the way would be open for “justifiable” assault.

I predicted right after the Spencer punch that many folks who are definitely not Nazis would come under attack in the wake of the cheerful justification of political violence. I was sadly proven right over the last few months.

First there was the February riot at UC-Berkeley when right-wing writer Milo Yiannopoulos tried to give a talk on campus. Police stood down as anarchists started fires, beat people they thought might be Nazis (including a Syrian Muslim who was not attending the Milo speech) and then ransacked the college town’s storefronts.

Milo’s talk was canceled, and leftists cheered the effectiveness of violence. Famous film director Judd Apatow tweeted threateningly that the riot should serve as a warning for all Trump supporters, while the main Berkeley student paper published several columns praising the riot.

One of the pro-riot columnists even implied that Yiannopoulos’s fans should be killed. “Here’s a big fuck you from the descendants of people who survived genocides by killing Nazis and people just like them,” read the level-headed remark from one Nisa Dang. (RELATED: Berkeley Student Paper Publishes Columns PRAISING Anti-Milo Riot)

A month later, conservative scholar Charles Murray and Middlebury College professor Allison Stanger were assaulted by a mob as they tried to leave the Vermont campus after attempting to have a debate. Stanger, who is an anti-Trump liberal, had her hair pulled by the mob, which caused her to suffer a concussion and neck injuries. All for the sin of trying to shield Murray from leftist fury.

The weekend after the Murray attack, violence erupted at Berkeley again at a pro-Trump rally held in the city. This time right-wingers fought back against the charging antifa, which served as a sign that left-wing violence, not dealt with by police, would be handled by those targeted for attacks.

Minor clashes have happened all over the country between black-masked antifa and red-hatted Trump supporters since then. However, none were on the scale of what went down Saturday. (RELATED: Protesters Clash With Trump Supporters At MAGA March In California)

The only conclusion to draw from this chain of events is that it was probably a bad idea to think violence was a good way to show your opposition to Trump. Now that elements of the Right have shown that they have the capability to defend themselves and drive the opposition, the only result of this embrace of violence is the radicalization of the Left’s enemies.

Famed left-wing philosopher Noam Chomsky warned of the consequences if his fellow lefties engage in this “self-destructive” tactic during the debate over punching Nazis. “When we move to the arena of violence, the most brutal guys win – and that’s not us,” Chomsky said.

Unfortunately, it seems the anarchists are learning that lesson far too late.

Their actions at the Inauguration and Berkeley have not driven fear into their political enemies. Those acts have only motivated folks on the Right to spend their weekend brawling with the hated antifa.

The embrace of violence has pretty much turned out to be self-destructive for the Left. All it’s done is to give the Right the justification to use violence as well.

Ann Coulter is set to appear at Berkeley on April 27, likely setting off another round of street battles. Whether antifa flees town again or forces Coulter’s fans to, they’ll still be the losers in the fight.

Because they’re not stopping the spread of “fascism” every time they appear en masse in black masks. They’re just encouraging millions of Americans to hate them with a burning passion.

Follow Scott on Twitter and purchase his new book, “No Campus for White Men,” on Amazon



Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2017/04/16/the-left-embraces-of-political-violence-backfires-in-berkeley/
178  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Academia Is Our Enemy So We Should Help It Commit Suicide on: April 17, 2017, 02:53:12 PM
https://townhall.com/columnists/kurtschlichter/2017/04/13/academia-is-our-enemy-so-we-should-help-it-commit-suicide-n2312479

Academia Is Our Enemy So We Should Help It Commit Suicide
Kurt  Schlichter  |Posted: Apr 13, 2017 12:01 AM 

If Animal House were to be rebooted today, Bluto – who would probably be updated into a differently–abled trans being of heft – might ask, “See if you can guess what am I now?” before expelling a whole mass of pus-like root vegetable on the WASPrivileged villains and announcing, “I’m a university – get it?”

At least popping a zit gets rid of the infection and promotes healing. But today, the higher education racket festers on the rear end of our culture, a painful, useless carbuncle of intellectual fraud, moral bankruptcy, and pernicious liberal fascism that impoverishes the young while it subsidizes a bunch of old pinkos who can’t hack it at Real World U.

At least literal boils don’t diss you while demanding you give them free money. We’re expected to shut up and write checks while the universitools ruin our culture. Luckily, due to the happy coincidence of a conservative federal government, technological advances, and the college industrial complex’s inexplicable death wish, we normals now have a chance to lance the boil that is 21st Century academia.

The purpose of universities long ago stopped being education, yet Big Edu and its liberal supporters keep pushing the lie that the only way to prepare young Americans for the future is to tie an anchor around their necks. America’s student loan debt now totals a staggering $1.4 trillion carried by 44 million Americans, and 2016 grads are weighed down with an average $37,712 each. And what do they get for it? Nothing but four years older and considerably dumber. Record numbers are using their degrees in Papuan Feminist Literature and Genderfluid Break Dance Therapy as gateway credentials into the exciting field of brewing caffeinated beverages for grown-ups who didn’t still live on the futon in their mom’s spare bedroom at age 33.

A house, a family, and a future that involves either dignity or success – these are things walking out into society with a meaningless piece of paper and nearly forty grand in debt prevent. But hey – the important thing is that we continue to subsidize one of the Democrats’ key constituencies and its prime breeding ground for the social dysfunction and soft-handed tyranny that are the hallmarks of progressivism. Too bad if it ruins the lives of the young suckers whose parents pushed them onto the conveyor belt that annually pumps out another crop of credentialed indentured servants.

But even sucking the lifeblood out of Millennials is not enough to feed the greedy academic beast. The bright new idea – one embraced by that commie from New England, that other commie from New England who tricked her college into thinking she was an Indian, and that firewater aficionado who lost the election – is “free college.” Let’s set aside the fact that community college exists to give everyone the opportunity to get some higher education; today, it’s job is to occupy high school students for a few extra years by intermittently teaching them the things the incompetence of unionized teachers ensured they didn’t learn in public high schools. The “free college” idea offers those of us who have already paid for our own education the opportunity to pony up for someone else’s. As the grade-inflated bastions of higher learning say to pretty much anyone who hands them a check and keeps his mouth shut about liking America, “Pass.”


If traditional colleges performed some meaningful function that only they could perform, then there might be a rationale for them in the 21st Century. But there’s not. What do four-year colleges do today?

Well, they cater to weenies who feel “unsafe” that Mike Pence is speaking to their graduates. Seventy-some years ago, young people that age were feeling unsafe because the Wehrmacht was trying to kill them on Omaha Beach.

At our nation’s most prestigious university, students are emotionally incapacitated by the fact that other Americans elected someone they dislike. Their reaction is to form a “resistance” that they refer to as “Dumbledore’s Army.” What a bunch of wand-stroking. But there is one good thing about this mortifying childishness – perhaps now, when you meet a grad, he, she, or xe will hesitate for a couple minutes before telling you it went to Harvard.

And in their quest to ensure their students’ perpetual unemployment, colleges are now teaching that punctuality is a social construct. Somewhere, a Starbucks manager is going to hear from Kaden the Barista that, “I like, totally couldn’t get here for my shift on time because, like intersectionality of my experience as a person of Scandinavianism and stuff. I feel unsafe because of your racist vikingaphobia and tardiness-shaming.”


Academia is pricing itself out of reach even as the antics of its inhabitants annoy and provoke those of us whose taxes already pick up a big chunk of the bill even without the “free college” okie-doke. This is where the fortuitous coincidence of two phenomena collide to give us an opportunity to fix our problem. We’re woke to the scam, and we now have a federal government dominated by conservatives that can use the law and the power of the purse to tame the beast. As the same time, technology that will allow no-frills learning is improving every day. What we must do is pass popular laws that make colleges accountable to taxpayers and students, including by shifting some of the student loan risk onto them. We must also protect that whole wacky freedom thing – colleges can always give up all federal funds if they, say, want to force college Christian clubs to accept atheist members. And yeah – that’s a thing.


At the same time, we can use the law to help facilitate the transition away from the current centralized campus with a bloated administration and faculty/four-year booze cruise model. Laws can mandate and regularize credentialing for technology-based learning to help make non-traditional programs a viable and accepted alternative to a traditional degree. Right now, college is less about learning than about creating a cultural signifier – someone who went to college is “one of us.” But that snobby luxury can’t endure when tuition becomes unaffordable for everyone but ultra-rich folks willing to pony up for their spawn’s sojourn on campus. And it’s unnecessary. To the extent college teaches hard skills – I learned how to beer bong like a boss – students can go on-line at a fraction of the cost to get the specific education they need, without spending time and money on nonsense they don’t. Oppression Studies requirements, I’m looking at you.

The quarter million dollar academic vacation model is economically unsustainable and poisonous to our culture. The world of Animal House was a lot more fun when it didn’t mean preemptive bankruptcy for its graduates and the fostering of a tyrannical training ground for future libfascists. It’s time to get all Bluto on the obsolete boil that is academia; time to give it a squeeze.
179  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Academia Is Our Enemy So We Should Help It Commit Suicide on: April 17, 2017, 02:46:37 PM
https://townhall.com/columnists/kurtschlichter/2017/04/13/academia-is-our-enemy-so-we-should-help-it-commit-suicide-n2312479

Academia Is Our Enemy So We Should Help It Commit Suicide
Kurt  Schlichter  |Posted: Apr 13, 2017 12:01 AM 

If Animal House were to be rebooted today, Bluto – who would probably be updated into a differently–abled trans being of heft – might ask, “See if you can guess what am I now?” before expelling a whole mass of pus-like root vegetable on the WASPrivileged villains and announcing, “I’m a university – get it?”

At least popping a zit gets rid of the infection and promotes healing. But today, the higher education racket festers on the rear end of our culture, a painful, useless carbuncle of intellectual fraud, moral bankruptcy, and pernicious liberal fascism that impoverishes the young while it subsidizes a bunch of old pinkos who can’t hack it at Real World U.

At least literal boils don’t diss you while demanding you give them free money. We’re expected to shut up and write checks while the universitools ruin our culture. Luckily, due to the happy coincidence of a conservative federal government, technological advances, and the college industrial complex’s inexplicable death wish, we normals now have a chance to lance the boil that is 21st Century academia.

The purpose of universities long ago stopped being education, yet Big Edu and its liberal supporters keep pushing the lie that the only way to prepare young Americans for the future is to tie an anchor around their necks. America’s student loan debt now totals a staggering $1.4 trillion carried by 44 million Americans, and 2016 grads are weighed down with an average $37,712 each. And what do they get for it? Nothing but four years older and considerably dumber. Record numbers are using their degrees in Papuan Feminist Literature and Genderfluid Break Dance Therapy as gateway credentials into the exciting field of brewing caffeinated beverages for grown-ups who didn’t still live on the futon in their mom’s spare bedroom at age 33.

A house, a family, and a future that involves either dignity or success – these are things walking out into society with a meaningless piece of paper and nearly forty grand in debt prevent. But hey – the important thing is that we continue to subsidize one of the Democrats’ key constituencies and its prime breeding ground for the social dysfunction and soft-handed tyranny that are the hallmarks of progressivism. Too bad if it ruins the lives of the young suckers whose parents pushed them onto the conveyor belt that annually pumps out another crop of credentialed indentured servants.

But even sucking the lifeblood out of Millennials is not enough to feed the greedy academic beast. The bright new idea – one embraced by that commie from New England, that other commie from New England who tricked her college into thinking she was an Indian, and that firewater aficionado who lost the election – is “free college.” Let’s set aside the fact that community college exists to give everyone the opportunity to get some higher education; today, it’s job is to occupy high school students for a few extra years by intermittently teaching them the things the incompetence of unionized teachers ensured they didn’t learn in public high schools. The “free college” idea offers those of us who have already paid for our own education the opportunity to pony up for someone else’s. As the grade-inflated bastions of higher learning say to pretty much anyone who hands them a check and keeps his mouth shut about liking America, “Pass.”


If traditional colleges performed some meaningful function that only they could perform, then there might be a rationale for them in the 21st Century. But there’s not. What do four-year colleges do today?

Well, they cater to weenies who feel “unsafe” that Mike Pence is speaking to their graduates. Seventy-some years ago, young people that age were feeling unsafe because the Wehrmacht was trying to kill them on Omaha Beach.

At our nation’s most prestigious university, students are emotionally incapacitated by the fact that other Americans elected someone they dislike. Their reaction is to form a “resistance” that they refer to as “Dumbledore’s Army.” What a bunch of wand-stroking. But there is one good thing about this mortifying childishness – perhaps now, when you meet a grad, he, she, or xe will hesitate for a couple minutes before telling you it went to Harvard.

And in their quest to ensure their students’ perpetual unemployment, colleges are now teaching that punctuality is a social construct. Somewhere, a Starbucks manager is going to hear from Kaden the Barista that, “I like, totally couldn’t get here for my shift on time because, like intersectionality of my experience as a person of Scandinavianism and stuff. I feel unsafe because of your racist vikingaphobia and tardiness-shaming.”


Academia is pricing itself out of reach even as the antics of its inhabitants annoy and provoke those of us whose taxes already pick up a big chunk of the bill even without the “free college” okie-doke. This is where the fortuitous coincidence of two phenomena collide to give us an opportunity to fix our problem. We’re woke to the scam, and we now have a federal government dominated by conservatives that can use the law and the power of the purse to tame the beast. As the same time, technology that will allow no-frills learning is improving every day. What we must do is pass popular laws that make colleges accountable to taxpayers and students, including by shifting some of the student loan risk onto them. We must also protect that whole wacky freedom thing – colleges can always give up all federal funds if they, say, want to force college Christian clubs to accept atheist members. And yeah – that’s a thing.


At the same time, we can use the law to help facilitate the transition away from the current centralized campus with a bloated administration and faculty/four-year booze cruise model. Laws can mandate and regularize credentialing for technology-based learning to help make non-traditional programs a viable and accepted alternative to a traditional degree. Right now, college is less about learning than about creating a cultural signifier – someone who went to college is “one of us.” But that snobby luxury can’t endure when tuition becomes unaffordable for everyone but ultra-rich folks willing to pony up for their spawn’s sojourn on campus. And it’s unnecessary. To the extent college teaches hard skills – I learned how to beer bong like a boss – students can go on-line at a fraction of the cost to get the specific education they need, without spending time and money on nonsense they don’t. Oppression Studies requirements, I’m looking at you.

The quarter million dollar academic vacation model is economically unsustainable and poisonous to our culture. The world of Animal House was a lot more fun when it didn’t mean preemptive bankruptcy for its graduates and the fostering of a tyrannical training ground for future libfascists. It’s time to get all Bluto on the obsolete boil that is academia; time to give it a squeeze.
180  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Forked Tongue's net worth on: April 17, 2017, 02:40:10 PM

And Rachel Dolezal is broke! No justice here!
181  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Esquire on the clashes in Berkeley on: April 17, 2017, 02:32:53 PM

The group's leader, Nathan Damigo, who was convicted in 2007 for pointing a gun at and and robbing a Muslim cab driver he believed to be Iraqi, made his presence known on Saturday. He was caught on video sucker punching a small, female-presenting anti-fascist protester in the face.

Why discriminate? We all know gender is just a construct, right? Perhaps the puncher was also female-presenting at that moment.


The left being upset at the lack of civility is like a guy who murders his parents and then asks for the court's mercy because he was an orphan.
182  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: RIP Turkey on: April 17, 2017, 10:23:51 AM

Make Turkey more islamic !

That should turn out well.
183  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / VIDEO: Berkeley cops sit in patrol car and watch as Trump supporters attacked on: April 16, 2017, 10:46:06 PM
http://www.theamericanmirror.com/video-berkeley-cops-sit-patrol-car-trump-supporters-attacked/

And where does this lead?

184  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Things continue to escalate and evolve... on: April 16, 2017, 10:18:53 PM
http://voxday.blogspot.com/2017/04/mailvox-fighting-antifa.html

SUNDAY, APRIL 16, 2017
Mailvox: fighting antifa

A firsthand report from the Second Battle of Berkeley from a reader:
Those Nike batting helmets are light, but they work! I took a rock to the top of my head yesterday that probably would have had me out.We also tested it before the saturday with a could of good smacks to the sides and back with both dowels and 1x3s. The impact jerked your head, but it protected against the pain and did a reasonable job of getting the blow to skate along the curves of the helmet.

One of the folks there next to me wasn't wearing a helmet, and took a nasty smack in the head with a thrown full mini-can of soda. He recovered OK, but there was a LOT of blood. They have video of him getting treated.

Wear a helmet...even if you are fit and young. I armored up because I am slow, but even those fit madmen dodging rocks on the front line could use it.

...and VD, They did a fantastic job of keeping the lines together yesterday. They had folks watching for flanking and the berserkers (that's what those based millennials were fighting like...absolutely breathtaking) at the front were keeping an ear out for the yell to pull back when they smashed into the front lines of the very skinny antifa janissaries. There were only a few incidents of folks pushing too far and getting enveloped.

Gloves are necessary as well. I started out with my motorcycle gloves, but lost them when I took them off to put some gauze on the fellow how to smack with the soda. Even though I didn't take a hit in the hands, I still learned why I needed them after the rally when I was heading back home. I didn't get pepper sprayed directly, but I did go through the clouds a couple of times and helped a few guys holding their head back when they were getting their eyes washed out. Pepper spray residue was all over my hands and when I took off my mask, helmet and goggles, I instinctively wiped my lips. Noob mistake that would have been mitigated if I was wearing gloves. I'm glad there were no cameras to capture my "it's too spicy" dance.
Good to know that there are some tactically-aware leaders taking charge, and that people are following their directions. Discipline plus preparation plus leadership usually equals victory. I noticed the discipline right away in the first videos I'd seen; it's far more important that everyone is on the same page than for anyone to engage in individual heroics or pursue optimal tactical objectives.

It was also significant to see that the tanks were going after the antifa leaders. Remember, antifa is all offense, so the leaders are not expecting to engage in any direct conflict themselves. The wedgies were a nice touch; another effective humiliation is to tie their shoelaces together or to remove their belts and bind their ankles with them.

It seems to me there ought to be a bounty placed on antifa flags and masks. I certainly wouldn't mind having a flag or two to hang in my office as a trophy.
185  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Climbing out of the Obama Foreign Policy Hole (Part 2) on: April 16, 2017, 04:59:35 PM
http://www.thediplomad.com/2017/04/climbing-out-of-obama-foreign-policy.html

Sunday, April 16, 2017
Climbing out of the Obama Foreign Policy Hole (Part 2)

A bit over three years ago I posted a piece titled "Climbing Out of the Obama Foreign Policy Hole." It was one of several in which I surveyed the disaster that was our foreign policy under the late, unlamented Obama misadministration, and provided some general prescriptions, and made the following observation,

our president should matter more to foreigners than to us. We hear nonsense from progressives about the president "running the country." Wrong! Our presidency was not designed to run the country--anybody who thinks that it was has not read the Constitution. The executive branch is not the country. The president must concentrate on the executive branch and the main tasks assigned it by the Constitution. Instead of promoting disastrous health care initiatives, listening to every phone call in Iowa, using the IRS to suppress dissent, beating up on Israel, yammering about fictitious global climate change, or demanding a costly and pointless relabeling of food products in the supermarket, the President should focus on his primary responsibility, the national defense. We must have a military capability second to none, and, in fact, greater than any foreseeable coalition of powers that might oppose us. We must stand with our allies; our word must be a gold coin; our enemies and friends must know we say what we mean and mean what we say, to wit, we have the biggest gun and will pull the trigger. The enemy is real and dangerous--a look at the forcibly altered NYC skyline should be proof enough of that. The "end of history" silliness should have died in the rubble of the Twin Towers.

I had written one earlier than that, some four years ago (time flies!) in which I also focussed on,

the disaster that is Obama's foreign policy, a policy of defeat. In its defense, let me say that to call it a policy designed for America's defeat gives it too much credit. My experience at State and the NSC, has shown me that most Obamaistas are not knowledgable enough to design anything. Foreign policy for the Obama crew is an afterthought. They really have little interest in it; many key jobs went vacant for months at State, DOD, CIA, and the NSC. The Obama foreign policy team is peopled by the "well-educated," i.e., they have college degrees, and as befits the "well educated" in today's America, they are stunningly ignorant and arrogant leftists, but mostly just idiots. They do not make plans; they tend to fly by the seat of their pants using a deeply ingrained anti-US default setting for navigation. They react to the Beltway crowd of NGOs, "activists" of various stripes, NPR, the Washington Post and the New York Times. Relying on what they "know," they ensure the US does not appear as a bully, or an interventionist when it comes to our enemies: after all, we did something to make them not like us. Long-term US allies, e.g., Canada, UK, Israel, Japan, Honduras, Colombia, on the other hand, they view as anti-poor, anti-Third World, and retrograde Cold Warriors. Why else would somebody befriend the US? Obama's NSC and State are staffed with people who do not know the history of the United States, and, simply, do not understand or appreciate the importance of the United States in and to the world. They are embarrassed by and, above all, do not like the United States. They look down on the average American, and openly detest any GOP Congressman or Congresswoman  . . . They have no problem with anti-American regimes and personages because overwhelmingly they are anti-American themselves
As we come up on the 90th day of the Trump administration (Only three months! Time crawls!) are we making progress in climbing out of the hole Obama made for us?

I think the answer is, "yes."

In just a scant ninety days, Trump has reestablished the USA as a force with which to be reckoned. It is a remarkable achievement, and one done solely on the basis of leadership. Even under the miserable Obama reign, the USA was the world's foremost economic and military power--at least on paper. We, however, had Obama, Clinton, and Kerry as the architects of a bizarre foreign policy which in essence assumed that the US had to atone for past sins, and should adopt a foreign policy worthy of perhaps Liechtenstein (I mean no offense to Liechtenstein), and not worry about whether America was "winning." We caught an eight-year "glimpse" into what a post-America world would look like. As I have said before, (here, here, for example) Russia parlayed its much weaker hand into a winning one on the basis of superior leadership on the part of Putin and Lavrov; they, and all our other rivals, knew how to take advantage of the foreign policy clown car careening around in DC.

You can have aircraft carriers, stealth bombers, the US Marine Corps, and an awesome fleet of nuclear subs but if leadership is missing, you got blather, you got convoluted word salads, you got angst, you got, well, you got dystopian Obama World in which our enemies ran amok while we ran amuck. To repeat, what was missing was American leadership. That's no longer the case.

As I have noted before, you can like Trump or not, you can agree with him or not, but the man makes decisions, and moves on. I don't see the "flip-flops" that some of his old critics greet with the same glee that  some of his old supporters bemoan. If these first there months are any indication, I think he will prove a master negotiator and game changer in the foreign policy arena. Trump is not flip-flopping, the world is; it is coming his way, not the other way round.

The Russians and the Chinese certainly have taken note of the change in Washington, and I suspect that the regimes in Iran, North Korea, Cuba, and Venezuela, and the fetid leaders of ISIS and the other radical Islamist death cults have, as well. We can see positive change all around; we see it in the willingness of the Chinese to work much more energetically to control Krazy Kim and deal with the unbalanced nature of our bilateral trade, we see it in the Russian acquiescence to our blasting their Syrian ally, we even see it on our border where illegal crossings have plummeted as the coyotes fear the new sheriff.

I am optimistic that we have begun the long climb out of the Obama foreign policy hole.
186  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Rex Tillerson: North Korea Threat Is Imminent, Strategic Patience Is Over on: April 16, 2017, 11:19:56 AM
http://observer.com/2017/03/rex-tillerson-north-korea-threat-strategic-patience/

Rex Tillerson: North Korea Threat Is Imminent, Strategic Patience Is Over
All options are on the table—including South Korea and Japan becoming nuclear powers
By Austin Bay • 03/23/17 6:30am
   
The dire threat North Korea presents to peace in East Asia starts with this fact: The Korean War never really ended.

It may shock some mainstream media minds to discover that Donald Trump is already a Korean War president, but so was Barack “Nobel Peace Prize” Obama, and every other American president since Dwight Eisenhower and Harry Truman. Truman was president in 1950 when, with the backing of Soviet Russia, North Korea’s “Great Leader” Kim Il Sung launched a surprise invasion of South Korea. The war Kim the First (Kim 1) began would eventually involve the U.S. and Communist China.
The Military Demarcation Line dividing the United Nations’ “truce village” of Panmunjom doesn’t legally demarcate the political boundary between North Korea and South Korea. It simply splits a demilitarized zone (DMZ) separating two warring armies ostensibly observing the fragile ceasefire the 1953 armistice established. The DMZ more or less reflects the final positions of the dug-in Free World and Communist armies.


Unfinished historical business? The Korean War isn’t the past. It’s a complex geo-political nightmare of the present. North Korea’s now-dynastic “Kim family” Communist regime creates the nightmare—and economically and politically exploits the fears it incites. The Kim dictatorship apparently believes that perpetuating the threat of another massively destructive conventional war with South Korea and its allies is essential.


History demonstrates that the North Korean regime is responsible for the ceasefire’s fragility. Since 1953, Pyongyang has repeatedly shattered the ceasefire, waging in belligerent fits and spasms a calculated, contained, yet always deadly war of aggression against South Korea. The March 26, 2010 attack on the corvette Cheonan is a particularly bloody example. Forty-six South Korean sailors died when a North Korean torpedo sank the ship. It was the highest death toll from a single North Korean attack since the 1960s.

The Kim dynasty also employs assassination and terror to kill its enemies (real and imagined) throughout the world.

East Asia is one of the world’s most economically productive regions. Seoul, Tokyo and Shanghai confirm that. The Kim dynasty’s “contained war” implicitly threatens damage (to various degrees) to these multi-trillion dollar contributors to global GDP. (Damage Shanghai? China believes a conventional war on the Korean peninsula could drive millions of refugees into northern China.)

The “contained war” willfully risks igniting a devastating, uncontained multi-polar war that could spread far beyond East Asia.

Why? The explanation links two dynastic goals. Pyongyang’s paranoid Communists still believe that they can ultimately obtain their key 1950 war objective: a Korea unified under Korean Communist control. They have also concluded that, in order to maintain control of the North Korean state, they must maintain a perpetual state of war. Both Kim Il Sung’s son and successor, Kim Jong Il (Kim 2), and his successor, current dictator Kim Jong Un (Kim 3) have pursued these goals.

The Kims don’t threaten to die fighting; they are already fighting. For a price, paid in aid or cash or food or fuel, their regime will restrain itself and end its latest belligerent fit. It may also tone down its violent rhetoric—until the next time. This summarizes the regime’s script for rattling its enemies and extorting bribes.

Time—time passes. Time has passed. There have been dozens of next times.

Now, North Korea’s next times routinely involve ballistic missiles and nuclear devices.

In 2011, North Korea began an accelerated ballistic missile test program. Since then, it has conducted over 30 live-fire tests. Still, the tests tended to follow the script. North Korea would issue rhetorical threats then fire a missile.

A missile test launch in August 2016 demonstrated improved capabilities. After traveling 1,000 kilometers, the missile splashed into the Sea of Japan but inside Japan’s maritime Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). Missile tracking data confirmed the strike location. A threat? No, a North Korean missile had physically violated Japanese sovereignty.

North Korea’s first nuclear test, conducted in 2006, was a fizzle, with a yield of about 0.7 kilotons. But a decade makes a difference. On September 9, 2016, North Korea claimed that it tested a nuclear warhead. Warhead or not, the device was nuclear and powerful. Monitors estimated its yield at 20 to 30 kilotons (about twice the size of the Hiroshima bomb).

It’s 2017. Kim Jong Un possesses ballistic missiles with near-intercontinental range. His regime has nuclear devices and, over time, intends to produce nuclear weapons. On March 6, 2017 his forces launched a volley of four ballistic missiles. This time, three landed in Japanese waters. The next day, Pyongyang announced that the missile launches were “practice” for targeting U.S. bases in Japan.

Practice for a first strike in a regional war? Yes.

North Korean extended-range missiles can already threaten Guam and parts of Alaska. Some analysts think the Hawaiian Islands are in range.

North Korea has declared that it will soon deploy long range missiles that can target the continental U.S. In March 2013, North Korea revealed that Austin, Texas (where South Korea’s Samsung Electronics Co. has a manufacturing facility) is a potential target. Washington, D.C. appeared on the target list.

On February 12, 2017 the regime tested a new intermediate range ballistic missile (IRBM), the Pukgukson-2 (Polaris-2). Solid fuel propels the missile, so Kim Jong Un’s troops can launch it on short notice. A tracked transporter erector-launcher (TEL) fired the missile, so the new missile is mobile. North Korea has few paved roads; a tracked TEL isn’t road bound. Moreover, the Pukgukson-2 was cold-launched—expelled from the TEL before main booster ignition. Missile experts say that indicates that a submarine can launch it.

The bottom line is that over the last eight months the regime has conducted weapons tests that demonstrate that it’s acquiring the operational military capabilities required to launch a very uncontained nuclear war.

The North Korean regime’s “contained war” strategy has exploited two policies that have been more or less strategic constants since 1953. The first is Communist China’s tacit long-term support for North Korea’s Communist dictatorship.

Beijing’s support for Pyongyang circa 2017 may not be as iron-clad as its support circa 1997, but that support remains.

The second policy, “contained war,” exploited the policy of “strategic patience” followed by South Korea, Japan and the U.S. It was part of the U.S. Cold War strategy of “containment.” South Korea and its allies would militarily contain North Korea. South Korea would pursue economic development and political liberalization. Over time, the North Korean regime might “mellow,” to appropriate George Kennan’s word for diminishing Soviet belligerence.

Until that change occurred, South Korea would absorb small attacks, no matter how vicious and provocative, in order to prevent a confrontation escalating to all-out war. Seoul’s northern suburbs are still within range of North Korea tube and rocket artillery. Even a short conventional war might kill tens of thousands of civilians. South Korea would definitely suffer severe economic loss.

“Soft power” appeals might solicit North Korean cooperation and eventually reduce its aggressiveness. So South Korea, Japan and the U.S. tried soft power—and did they ever.

The Clinton Administration’s 1994 Agreed Framework gave Kim Il Sung heavy fuel oil and technical assistance if his regime would shut down the nuclear reactors it used to produce weapons-grade plutonium. The U.S. would even help North Korea acquire light water nuclear reactors for electrical generation if it permitted International Atomic Energy Agency inspections and complied with other IAEA safeguards. In 2002, the U.S. determined that North Korea had violated the Agreed Framework and had an ongoing uranium enrichment program. Indeed, it did.

In 2000 South Korea began its Sunshine Policy—soft power on steroids. South Korea would reward North Korea with “economic incentives” in exchange for political cooperation. Seoul’s goal was eventual détente and peace.

Then, North Korea conducted its 2006 nuclear test. The test was supposed to scare South Korea, and it did. Pyongyang refused Seoul’s demand that it halt its nuclear weapons program.

In 2008, the South Korean government decided that Sunshine would diminish as long as the North sought nuclear weapons. Current incentive programs would continue, but there would be no new endeavors until North Korea ended its nuclear quest. North Korea conducted another nuclear test in 2009. The Cheonan incident solidified opposition to the Sunshine Policy. In November 2010, South Korea’s Unification Ministry terminated the program.

The Sunshine Policy’s “soft power” failed to stop North Korea’s nuclear weapons program. UN sanctions may have hindered it, but they haven’t stopped it, either. The “Panama Papers” scandal revealed that the Panamanian law firm, Mossack Fonseca, helped a financial firm fund North Korea’s nuclear weapons program. According to investigators, the firm’s owners were based in Pyongyang. The Kim regime knows how to evade sanctions by hiring the skillfully incurious.

By 2010, South Korea and Japan had concluded that “strategic patience” had failed. President Barack Obama said “strategic patience” still guided U.S. policy, but he also approved the deployment of a U.S. Army Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile defense battery to South Korea. The battery arrived this February.

In Seoul on March 17, after visiting the DMZ, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson succinctly sketched America’s evolving position: “Let me be very clear: the policy of strategic patience has ended. We are exploring a new range of diplomatic, security, economic measures. All options are on the table.”

All options included the possible acquisition of nuclear weapons by South Korea and Japan. Japan and South Korea are already investing in improved ballistic missile defense systems.

A day later in a sit-down interview with the Independent Journal Review, Tillerson insisted, “Our objective is a denuclearized Korean peninsula. A denuclearized Korean peninsula negates any thought or need for Japan to have nuclear weapons. We say all options are on the table, but we cannot predict the future. So we do think it’s important that everyone in the region has a clear understanding that circumstances could evolve to the point that for mutual deterrence reasons, we might have to consider that. But as I said yesterday, there are a lot of… there’s a lot of steps and a lot of distance between now and a time that we would have to make a decision like that.”

When the interviewer pressed him about how to “get ahead” of North Korea, Tillerson added, “We’re not sure if we can get ahead of them. If they just continue, you know, we’re headed to a place no one wants to be… if they continue with their testing and continue the development of both their weapons and their delivery systems, then we’re going to find ourselves in a place that’s even more dangerous than we are today.”

The Independent Journal Review’s interview transcript indicates that Tillerson used the word “imminent” at least four times—“imminent circumstances” and “imminent threat.” “Imminent” is a politically flammable term and, in regards to Iraq, still incites bitter argument. The Bush administration never used the word “imminent” to describe Saddam Hussein’s potential use of weapons of mass destruction. However, it definitely portrayed the threat Saddam posed as dire and urgent.

Saddam had a WMD record. His forces had used chemical weapons against Iranian soldiers and Kurdish rebels. WMD was certainly part of Saddam’s “threat profile.”

“Imminent” is an important word. In 2002, the Bush administration argued that 9/11 demanded the international legal concept of “imminent threat” be revised to deal with 21st century adversaries.

Inaction, particularly when an adversary has WMD, entails risk. Inaction when an adversary is a terrorist with WMD may entail unacceptable risks.

Unlike the Bush administration, the Trump administration has deliberately and emphatically used the word “imminent.” Secretary of State Tillerson repeated it. Diplomats know he was sending a message.

On February 13, the day after the Pukgukson-2 launch, assassins in Malaysia murdered Kim Jong Un’s half-brother, Kim Jong Nam. The hit team killed him at the Kuala Lumpur airport in front of a closed circuit television camera.

Korean media report that North Korean defectors repeatedly asked Jong Nam to politically challenge Jong Un. One defector group in Europe even asked him to lead a government in exile. Jong Nam rejected the proposal. Though he said he supported reform in North Korea, Jong Nam also said he supported his younger brother.

Yet, Kim Jong Un decided his brother presented a growing threat to his regime, so had his brother killed. The assassins apparently sprayed Jong Nam’s face with liquid nerve agent VX. When delivered with missile warheads or artillery shells, VX is a weapon of mass destruction, “the most deadly chemical weapon ever produced.”

Is war with North Korea a “trip wire” conflict? Yes. It has been since Kim Il Sung’s surprise attack in 1950. With Kim Jong Un in charge any “incident of escalation” could lead to conflagration.

The Trump administration is clearly pressuring China. I guarantee Beijing gulped when Tillerson suggested that South Korea and Japan might acquire nuclear weapons—and it was supposed to. China has regarded the presence of U.S. forces in Japan as a brake on a revival of Japanese militarism. In the mid-1980s, I attended a U.S. Army War College reception for a Chinese military officer who had given a talk to War College students. The Chinese officer wore his uniform; most of the American student officers wore business suits. I overheard a part of a conversation the Chinese officer was having with a group of students. The subject was the forward deployment of U.S. forces in Japan and specifically the stationing of U.S. Navy ships in Japan. The Chinese officer smiled. “The U.S. Navy in Yokahama…in China we think this is very good.” His eyes twinkled. I doubt they’re twinkling now.

Japan doesn’t really want nuclear weapons, and China definitely doesn’t want Japan to acquire nuclear weapons.

But the Kim dynasty’s pursuit of nuclear weapons and missiles to deliver them continues unabated and the threat they pose is increasing.

China must bring decisive pressure on North Korea’s regime. By decisive, I mean pressure that terminates North Korea’s nuclear weapons program.

Perhaps China can produce a diplomatic miracle and convince Kim Jong Un that ending the program is the only way he and his regime will survive. This diplomatic miracle would deserve a Nobel Peace Prize.

China may have the covert wherewithal to induce the North Korean military to conduct “regime change from within.” I suspect this fear haunts Kim Jong Un. Kim Jong Nam reportedly had numerous friends in China.

If China cannot bring decisive pressure, or refuses to do so, then the threat of a high-intensity war fought to determine the Kim dynasty’s fate will eventually become imminent. Should this last phase of the Korean War erupt, it won’t be confined to the peninsula. If nuclear weapons strike cities the casualties will be enormous.

Like Rex Tillerson said, “…we’re headed to a place no one wants to be.”

Austin Bay is a contributing editor at StrategyPage.com and adjunct professor at the University of Texas in Austin. His most recent book is a biography of Kemal Ataturk (Macmillan 2011). Bay is a retired U.S. Army Reserve colonel.
187  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / [Robert Park] Japan and China visibly preparing for preventive strike fallout on: April 16, 2017, 10:14:27 AM
http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20170414000750


[Robert Park] Japan and China visibly preparing for preventive strike fallout


   Published : 2017-04-16 17:48
Updated : 2017-04-16 17:48
Japan and China have already taken clear-cut measures to safeguard their nationals and interests in the event of a looming military confrontation.

Meanwhile, Korean civilians -- who would suffer most devastatingly as “collateral damage” on account of preventive strikes against North Korea -- remain singularly and inexplicably vulnerable as well as thoroughly unprepared for the possibility.

Bewilderingly, South Korea’s opposition to such strikes has yet to be delivered to the US in an unequivocal and unwavering manner.

As political scientist John Delury stated regarding the “pre-emptive strike” scheme for a March 10 report, “The role of a South Korean president, whether liberal or conservative, is to be the person who gently takes that option off the table. The South Korean president has to be saying, ‘If you take out their missile pad, they take out our capital.’ But that hasn’t been happening.”

Trump’s “unpredictability” renders South Korea’s present ambiguity on the vital matter all the more perilous. It is critical to immediately clarify with counterparts in the US the South’s stance.

Brian Bridges, an adjunct professor of Asian politics at Lingnan University, told Bloomberg for an April 12 report: “This has the potential to turn into a conflagration that Asia hasn’t seen since the Vietnam war. If anything, his unpredictability makes the situation more risky because the North Koreans aren’t 100 percent sure he won’t attack.”

Many analysts have stressed that the risk of miscalculated military operations -- via adversaries misreading each other’s intentions -- remains among the gravest and most credible dangers the Korean Peninsula and people face today.

South Korea should pay closer attention to relevant developments in Japan.

In March, Japan began civilian evacuation drills preparing for a North Korea-related contingency.

During a bilateral government meeting preceding last week’s Trump-Xi summit, Japan’s Kyodo News reports Washington informed Tokyo it is highly possible they will strike the North and that the US president intended to deliver this plan to Xi.

Following the US-China summit, the Huanqiu Shibao, one of China’s state-run newspapers, addressed war rumors relevant to the Korean Peninsula as of legitimate concern, calling for heightened vigilance over this particular period on Tuesday. Kim Jong-un is generally believed to be preparing a nuclear or missile test, or possibly another type of provocation this month for his grandfather’s birthday and/or for the foundation date of the North Korean armed forces on April 25.

On Wednesday, Japan’s Nihon Keizai Shimbun reported the US has accepted Tokyo’s request for bilateral consultation preceding military action against North Korea. Somehow, South Korea seems to be left out when the region, in the wake of US strikes, would be required to absorb the full force of Kim Jong-un’s reprisals while woefully unprotected.

KBS reported Tuesday a senior researcher at the Institute of Far Eastern Studies warned “a US pre-emptive strike against North Korea will cause massive civilian casualties in South Korea,” further pointing out that the North’s counterattack “would not deal a severe blow to US troops, however South Korea‘s capital region, with a population of 25 million, is within the range of the North’s artillery attack.”

Cheong Seong-chang, senior research fellow at the Sejong Institute, stated for an April 11 article: “If the US attacks the Yongbyon facility, it will open the curtains to the worst-case scenario -- nuclear war -- as North Korea could attack South Korea’s nuclear plants or Seoul using nuclear weapons. ... Japan will support the US in attacking North Korea.”

On Sunday, former Japanese Cabinet Minister Shigeru Ishiba -- who has openly advocated for his country to establish the capability to conduct “pre-emptive” strikes against North Korea, and may become prime minister -- declared “Seoul might turn into a sea of fire,” while “calling for measures to rescue Japanese citizens in Seoul.” As Dong-A Ilbo pointed out in an editorial Tuesday, “Such a remark was publicly made by such an influential politician, which is simply petrifying.”

None can convincingly deny that Japan would be considerably more privy to what the US may or may not do, given the undisguised closeness of the Abe and Trump administrations.

As Joongang Ilbo pointed out in an April 10 editorial, Trump phoned Shinzo Abe before the Trump-Xi summit to discuss issues that would be raised, while no such conversation was held with Seoul.

Following the summit, Trump spoke for 45 minutes with Abe but only 20 minutes with South Korea’s Prime Minister and acting President Hwang Kyo-ahn.

We witnessed a similar disparity during Rex Tillerson’s time in Asia, and in other settings.

Most conspicuously and alarmingly, while Trump has appointed ambassadors to Japan, China and Russia, none has yet been named for Korea.

On Tuesday, Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga conveyed Tokyo’s support for Washington’s consideration of “all options” vis–a–vis North Korea.

Japanese media reports the return of Tokyo’s ambassador to the South was linked to the need for facilitating the evacuation of Japanese citizens in the event of war.

It seems both China and Japan are not quite convinced that threats of a US strike on North Korea are merely bombast. The fact that both countries’ leaders have had summit meetings with Trump -- while South Korea has not -- and are taking such substantial measures ought not to be dismissed by South Koreans.

In a March 20 commentary titled “Bombing North Korea is not an option,” Gideon Rachman of the Financial Times reminds that multiple “waves” of preventive strikes would be needed to achieve US stated objectives as “North Korean nuclear and missile programs are widely dispersed, including underground and underwater.”

“It is unlikely that the whole program could be destroyed in a single wave of strikes, which would immediately raise the prospect of nuclear retaliation by the North,” Rachman wrote.

A positive and commendable step in the proper direction is that Seoul’s unification minister, Hong Yong-pyo, has stepped forward to declare South Korea’s opposition to American military action against North Korea. Through a media conference Monday, Hong stated the government will need to “consult with Washington about a pre-emptive strike against the North considering the impact it would have on the security of South Korea.” The above suggests, however, that this conversation has yet to sufficiently take place. Hong added “South Korea cannot see eye to eye with the US on every military decision,” KBS reported.

The South Korean government must now deliver the equivalent message to US authorities and “gently” but categorically remove the US military strike option “off the table” -- so that such a catastrophic misstep would never be left to chance nor a distressed, unprepared and precariously assailable populace abandoned to such agonizing speculation.


By Robert Park

Robert Park is a founding member of the nonpartisan Worldwide Coalition to Stop Genocide in North Korea, minister, musician and former prisoner of conscience. He can be reached at wcsgnk1@protonmail.com. -- Ed.
188  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / If the Government Cannot Be Trusted, Can It Protect the Nation? on: April 16, 2017, 10:01:14 AM
I used to have faith in the people that did these jobs. Eight years of Obama's politicization/weaponization of the federal government taught me otherwise.


If the Government Cannot Be Trusted, Can It Protect the Nation?
by ANDREW C. MCCARTHY   April 15, 2017 4:00 AM


A brawl over FISA is coming. ‘I’m from the government, and I’m here to help.” Ronald Reagan famously described these as “the nine most terrifying words in the English language.” It may be time to propose a two-word corollary. “Trust us.” In the end, underneath the geek-speak of encryption, electronic intercepts, forward-looking infrared thermal imaging, satellite surveillance, and sundry collection technologies, that is what the government is really saying when it comes to national security: “Trust us. The intelligence collection we do is important — is essential – to keeping you alive. Oh . . . and don’t ask a lot of questions. You know, can’t discuss that — methods and sources, etc.” I don’t think that’s going to cut it this time. Before 2017 is out, we are going to have a brawl over FISA — the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. Specifically, over FISA section 702, on which much of the sprawling American intelligence enterprise is now based.

It will lapse if not reauthorized by Congress. We ought to be headed into that brawl with a sense of how dangerous the world has become: Competitive great-power geopolitics has reemerged, yet international jihadism remains as threatening as ever. Instead, foremost in our minds will be how readily the government’s awesome intelligence capabilities can be abused. That is the real significance of the controversy over Obama-administration spying on the Trump campaign and transition. The scandal that CNN is hell-bent on ignoring brings into sharp relief the very abuses the media, echoing civil-liberties activists, have warned against for years: pretextual uses of intelligence-collection powers to spy on political opponents and dissenters. As a national-security conservative with no illusions about government, I’ve acknowledged these concerns. I’ve countered, though, that the powers are, yes, essential to national security. The abuse of power is thus a reason to get rid of the abuser, not the power. In our modern political dysfunction, that seems impossible. Washington protects its own. No one gets fired anymore, let alone impeached. So just as we make war on “terror” because we don’t want to identify the enemy, we condemn “power” because we can’t bring ourselves to hold the rogue officials accountable. Did the Obama administration have compelling foreign-intelligence reasons to monitor its political opponents? Or was Russian espionage mainly a cover for political spying? As I’ve said before, there is enough risk on both sides that I doubt we will get definitive answers to these questions.

There is little doubt, however, that Republicans and Democrats will mutually find intelligence-collection power to be a convenient scapegoat. That’s where this is heading: the showdown over FISA reauthorization. So can we trust the government with this power? It is worth remembering that, before someone decided that the perilous complexities of the modern world left us with no choice but to trust the government, we built a governing system on the premise that it can’t be trusted. Our supposedly self-determining society never conducted a referendum that officially transformed government from a necessary evil to a guardian angel. But while you weren’t looking, there does seem to have been a dramatic transformation of the Fourth Amendment. Before someone decided that the perilous complexities of the modern world left us with no choice but to trust the government, we built a governing system on the premise that it can’t be trusted. The amendment’s original meaning is simple enough: The government is not permitted to seize your most personal information — that yielded by searching your home, your person, your papers, or your effects — in the absence of permission from a judge. The idea is that the government’s own say-so cannot be trusted. Consequently, we don’t let it knock down your door unless its agents show probable cause that you have committed some wrong. That showing must satisfy a court — the forum in which the citizen is protected from government overreach. Only if the judge grants a warrant may the government search and seize.

Flash-forward a couple of centuries. The Fourth Amendment’s words are still the same, but the paradigm has shifted. Now we permit the government to seize first and search later. That is, we let government intelligence agents obtain evidence without cause. The caveat is that they will just hold it in a database, they won’t analyze it unless and until there is cause. The courts no longer determine whether the government may obtain the evidence in the first place; they merely endorse and kinda-sorta police the “seize now, search later” arrangement — under which the government is granted such broad discretion to analyze what it has obtained that the judicial protection seems illusory. I don’t mean to make this sound like a scam. There is a legal rationale for it. The principal targets of government foreign-intelligence operations are aliens outside the U.S. — i.e., agents of foreign powers who could detrimentally affect American interests, and who are located outside the jurisdiction of American courts. They are not entitled to American legal protection at all, so the courts should not be involved — to say nothing of the fact that the judiciary, for all its legal acumen, is not institutionally competent to oversee intelligence matters.

Yet modern communications technology renders it inevitable that intelligence-collection efforts, even as they target foreigners, will capture private communications involving Americans. So the courts have to be involved. Still, this involvement does not mean they are any more competent to oversee intelligence matters. And the effort to safeguard Americans inevitably benefits foreign targets of intelligence collection — often, our enemies. So how have we resolved these tensions? We let the courts oversee foreign-intelligence collection so Americans will have some ostensible protections; but we don’t let the courts be much more than a rubber stamp, because we know they really shouldn’t be involved in foreign-intelligence matters — and because we don’t want to turn our own judiciary into our enemies’ shield. It is a delicate balance. It is also a balance that can be unbalanced in a hurry, because it has more to do with shifting political winds than with enduring legal norms. After all, we’ve departed from our legal norms: We allow the government to seize our information without cause and trust that they will never look at what we’ve allowed them to retain unless some really good reason — some national-security reason — triggers a need to pluck us out of the database and investigate. And . . . because intelligence involves secrets and sources and life and death, we’ve accepted that the government cannot tell us its reasons for investigating. We trust that when the government tells us it is protecting national security, it is not actually scheming to spy on the incumbent administration’s political opponents . . . and on us. But can we trust the government? Whether we are inclined to do so depends on what is making us feel most vulnerable at the moment: foreign threats or rogue officials. If I had to bet right now, I’d say FISA is in trouble because of the rogue officials . . . and we’re in trouble because the foreign threats are not going away. — Andrew C. McCarthy is a senior policy fellow at the National Review Institute and a contributing editor of National Review.

Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/446767/fisa-reauthorization-federal-intelligence-surveillance-act-trump-administration-spying-scandal-national-security
189  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: It is almost as if someone fuct with it , , , on: April 15, 2017, 09:32:41 PM

Yeah, I was thinking the same thing.

http://www.popularmechanics.com/military/weapons/news/a19877/how-the-military-will-be-revolutionized-by-laser-weaponry/

"Unlike their fictional cousins in video games and movies, lasers don't make a sizzling noise as they burn through the air. Lasers can also be invisible, unless they pass through a medium such as smoke or fog. Someone under fire from a laser weapon may not know they're under attack until holes start appearing in things, things get very hot, and ammunition starts exploding."
190  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: General "Forked Tongue" Warren confused on: April 14, 2017, 09:33:25 PM

It's called rebuilding credibility. Something Fauxcohauntus knows nothing about.
191  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Trump-Russia Accusations and the possible Silent Coup on: April 14, 2017, 02:13:21 PM
Whether or not Trump was eavesdropped on by OBama or his warriors we will NEVER know.   The only way we could would be if someone directly involved came forward and admitted it AND offered up some hard core evidence to back it up (lest he/she be tarred and feathered by the entire LEFT.  And we know that would not happen.  At that high level there is not going to be any hardcore evidence, everyone would deny it (and get rewarded with jobs, board appointments , get their kids into Columbia, their spouse get a nice juicy grant, etc.

The normally very careful Judge went out on a limb and the entire apparatus of the LEFT and now thanks to Trump's bashing of our intelligence divisions and thus the wrath of them too Fox is forced to make the Judge eat his words.

https://www.yahoo.com/finance/news/fox-pulls-napolitano-air-trump-report-023807823--politics.html

That's a $400K/yr gig the Judge now lost.

And the worst part of it is, I believe the Judge and  Not everyone else who is denying it.
 Obama could absolutely be part of and eaves dropping conspiracy that obviously exists to get rid of Trump.


https://pjmedia.com/trending/2017/04/14/report-british-spy-agency-was-surveilling-trump-team/
Report: British Spy Agency Was Surveilling Trump Team
 BY DEBRA HEINE APRIL 14, 2017

Robert Hannigan steps down. File photo dated 17/11/15 of the director of GCHQ Robert Hannigan who has has decided to step down, the intelligence agency has announced. Issue date: Monday January 23, 2017. Ben Birchall/PA Wire
A month ago, Fox News senior legal analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano claimed that three intelligence sources had informed him President Obama used a British intelligence organization to spy on then-candidate Trump's associates.

Napolitano reported on his website:

Sources have told Fox News that the British foreign surveillance service, the Government Communications Headquarters, known as GCHQ, most likely provided Obama with transcripts of Trump's calls. The NSA has given GCHQ full 24/7 access to its computers, so GCHQ -- a foreign intelligence agency that, like the NSA, operates outside our constitutional norms -- has the digital versions of all electronic communications made in America in 2016, including Trump's. So by bypassing all American intelligence services, Obama would have had access to what he wanted with no Obama administration fingerprints.
When White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer cited the report during a daily White House briefing, international shock waves and furious denials from the British intel agency ensued:

The agency described the allegations first made by a former judge turned media commentator, Andrew Napolitano, as “nonsense”.
“They are utterly ridiculous and should be ignored,” a spokesperson for GCHQ said.

Fox News temporarily took Napolitano off the air until the dust settled. Yet when he came back two weeks later, Judge Nap stood by his story, saying "a lot more is going to come."

A lot more did come Thursday in a new report published by The Guardian. The report indicates that Napolitano was on the right track: GCHQ and other European spy agencies did pass on incidental electronic surveillance (SIGINT) to the Obama administration revealing "contacts between members of Donald Trump’s campaign team and Russian intelligence operatives." But according to the Guardian's anonymous sources, the intelligence was passed on to the United States "as part of a routine exchange of information" -- not at the behest of the Obama administration, as Napolitano had suggested.
 
So there are two versions of this story now, both based on anonymous sources.

The Guardian reports that the surveillance began in late 2015, when British spooks "first became aware in late 2015 of suspicious 'interactions' between figures connected to Trump and known or suspected Russian agents":

Over the next six months, until summer 2016, a number of western agencies shared further information on contacts between Trump’s inner circle and Russians, sources said.
The European countries that passed on electronic intelligence -- known as sigint -- included Germany, Estonia and Poland. Australia, a member of the “Five Eyes” spying alliance that also includes the US, UK, Canada and New Zealand, also relayed material, one source said.

Another source suggested the Dutch and the French spy agency, the General Directorate for External Security or DGSE, were contributors.

It is understood that GCHQ was at no point carrying out a targeted operation against Trump or his team or proactively seeking information. The alleged conversations were picked up by chance as part of routine surveillance of Russian intelligence assets. Over several months, different agencies targeting the same people began to see a pattern of connections that were flagged to intelligence officials in the US.

According to The Guardian, intelligence sources in both U.S. and UK:

... acknowledge that GCHQ played an early, prominent role in kickstarting the FBI’s Trump-Russia investigation, which began in late July 2016.
One source claimed that U.S. intelligence was “very late to the game,” and FBI Director James Comey didn't become interested until after the election:

Comey’s apparent shift may have followed a mid-October decision by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court to approve a secret surveillance order. The order gave permission for the Department of Justice to investigate two banks suspected of being part of the Kremlin’s undercover influence operation.
According to the BBC, the justice department’s request came after a tipoff from an intelligence agency in one of the Baltic states. This is believed to be Estonia.

The Washington Post reported on Wednesday that the same order covered Carter Page, one of Trump’s associates. It allowed the FBI and the justice department to monitor Page’s communications. Page, a former foreign policy aide, was suspected of being an agent of influence working for Russia, the paper said, citing U.S. officials.

The application covered contacts Page allegedly had in 2013 with a Russian foreign intelligence agent, and other undisclosed meetings with Russian operatives, the Post said. Page denies wrongdoing and complained of “unjustified, politically motivated government surveillance”.

According to one of the Guardian's sources, the investigation is making progress:

They now have specific concrete and corroborative evidence of collusion. This is between people in the Trump campaign and agents of [Russian] influence relating to the use of hacked material.
Carter Page, appearing on the Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor Thursday night, decried the "false accusations" against him that are being pushed by Democrats, but said he was encouraged because the truth was beginning to come out about the surveillance scandal.
192  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Race, religion, ethnic origin, LGBT, "discrimination", & discrimination. on: April 13, 2017, 09:08:08 AM
Not necessary, but that the Mexican number is lower than the US number does surprise.

Anyway, I find this 95% datum to be quite useful in unbalancing those who allege/babble about income disparity. grin

All the cartel related deaths probably don't get entered into the stats. Probably a big difference in deaths by chainsaw in Mexico vs. the US.
193  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: 150,000 Chinese troops on Nork border on: April 11, 2017, 08:03:22 PM

I believe that is most likely to secure China's border to
prevent a flood of NorK refugees should the state collapse. Hopefully this means China is giving the NorKs the Fredo kiss.
194  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Notorious RBG and Lindsey Graham on: April 11, 2017, 07:59:57 PM

She gets something right every so often. This would be one of those times.
195  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / With Trump and Xi Jinping's summit, hopefully the fix is in.... on: April 09, 2017, 02:08:18 PM
I think there is a good chance we move on the NorKs. Hopefully China stands back and let's it happen.


196  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: American into WW1 on: April 09, 2017, 10:59:13 AM
I am old enough to remember the 100 th anniversary of the end (if not the beginning) of the American Civil War (April 1965).  If I am not mistaken that was the year the last known Civil War soldier died too.

I lived long enough to now witness the 100 th anniversary of the beginning of our involvement in WW1:

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/446570/great-war-wwi-documentary-tells-america-story

The way things are headed, you'll be around for WWIII and/or the 2nd Civil War.

197  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: US Senate, McConnell, Garland out, Justice Gorsuch confirmed on: April 09, 2017, 10:56:56 AM
No one really likes Mitch McConnell (or any other congressional leader) but as mentioned earlier, he deserves extraordinary credit for this turn of events that followed Scalia's sudden, election year death.

He took and used his opponents' words against them, the Biden rule, and Reid and Schumer, and held firm in a situation where elected Republicans normally fold.

Accused of Republicans stealing back this seat, in truth he boldly put the appointment and confirmation directly in the hands of the American people exactly as envisioned by the Founders.

Republicans stuck together and Democrats did not. Red-state Democrats up for reelection fled  their party's leadership like rats from a sinking ship.  Televised hearings exposed the fiction that this man is outside of any reasonable mainstream of judicial thought .  Regarding the ill-advised filibuster, Democrats, for the moment, earned the label of 'the stupid party'.

I was very happy to see the turtle demonstrate he had a spine inside his shell.



198  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Islam in Arabic/Islamic Countries: on: April 09, 2017, 10:54:33 AM
Bombings at Egyptian Coptic churches kill 36, injure more than 100

http://mobile.reuters.com/article/idUSKBN17B06U

Looks like this was (also) committed by Islamist militants, not Lutheran refugees fleeing Scandinavia.

Moral equivalence is disappearing before our eyes.

Are we sure no radicalized trucks were involved?
199  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Media, Ministry of Truth Issues on: April 09, 2017, 10:53:20 AM

"Who awards truth to something like the Clinton Administration ending nuclear weapons in North with words and gifts the Obama Administration ending the nuclear threat in Iran with words and cash, or believing that Putin was going to remove weapons from his Middle East ally?"

With the horrors yet to come, this will be Obama's true legacy.

200  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Behold the beauty of Sweden's diversity! on: April 08, 2017, 05:53:48 PM
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/04/07/truck-crashes-crowd-people-stockholm/

A suspected terrorist targeted young children as he drove a hijacked lorry into a crowded shopping street in Stockholm, witnesses claimed last night.

Infants’ buggies were sent “flying through the air”, one Swedish broadcaster reported, as the vehicle zigzagged along the pedestrianised Queen Street shopping district and embedded itself in the window of a department store.

“It swerved from side to side. It didn’t look out of control, it was trying to hit people,” a second witness, Glen Foran, an Australian tourist, told Reuters. “It hit people, it was terrible. It hit a pram with a kid in it, demolished it.”
Any chance the latest UK or Sweden attack was committed by a Lutheran extremist named Lars?

No profiling! It might have been Sven, or Thor or Fritjof just as easily!

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