Live From Ferguson

According to Don Lemon on CNN, his sources say that officer Darren Wilson will not be indicted.

I’m watching CNN tonight for the first time since probably 9/11 and the invasion of Afghanistan.

I know – I feel dirty too.

UPDATE: Van Jones expresses an easement the Tea Party opposes police brutality.

Nope. No bias there.

UPDATE: Is anybody but me betting that the media is hitting its knees and praying for a major riot?

UPDATE : and here comes the press conference…

UPDATE: Dist. Atty. takes a not remotely muted whack at the mainstream media. Good.

UPDATE: “No probable cause exists to indict Officer Wilson”.

UPDATE: As the grand jury report continues, CNN is showing footage of demagogues… well, demagogue in.

UPDATE: Observation of the crowd as presented on CNN: lots of black people with visible faces; lots of twentysomething white people with bandannas over their faces.

It looks like some stuff is being thrown around – and some people are running hither and Jan. Hard to tell if anything is actually breaking out yet.

UPDATE: Shrill media woman asking the district attorney if the police will in the future be required to shoot for hands and legs, went under attack – or not shoot on armed suspects.

Somebody’s been watching too many movies.

UPDATE: Reporter who looks like he was from the Pacific Network asks: why are there no laws protecting the likes of Michael Wilson?”

UPDATE: Oh joy. The oresident is next.

UPDATE: CNN talking head – I think it’s Jeffrey Toobin, but I can’t tell for sure, knows what really matters whether; defending the media against the district attorney’s complaints about their wretched performance in this whole case.

UPDATE: Mark Garragos is a disgrace to the legal profession, and to America.

UPDATE: reports of gunfire. Good news – the reports are coming from the mainstream media, so they’re probably BS.

But it did take CNN precisely 10 seconds to put it a screaming “Gunshots Heard in Ferguson” banner.

UPDATE: President Obama opens with “this nation is built on the rule of law”. I couldn’t help but laugh.

UPDATE: at first blush, Obama’s speech is not a bad one. It’s not exactly soaring rhetoric, and that’s probably okay.

Related news – wow, that’s a lot of teargas.

UPDATE: oh, goody – cars burning, teargas in the air.

UPDATE: a very winded sounding Jake Tapper is reporting bricks being thrown, looting, cars overturned.

UPDATE: reporters are getting to your guest. So at least there’s some good news.

UPDATE: Van Jones assures us of the vast majority of the crowd is peaceful – but there is apparently quite a bit of teargas. And that’s where the media are, naturally.

UPDATE: Don Lemon apparently needed to pay attention during gas mask training. He tried to don his mask, but was overcome.

UPDATE: I don’t know what makes for worse television – Don Lemon gagging on tear gas, or Don Lemon psychoanalyzing the crowd.

UPDATE: i’m not going to say that there’s no justification for black anger with a white police department – but if I hear Don lemon rationalize the crowds violence anymore, I’m a grab a teargas lunch for myself.

UPDATE: cNN’s Chris Cuomo needs to shut up and put a gas mask on.

UPDATE: Jake Tapper is on the scene of extended vandalism and looting.

UPDATE: Cuomo is reporting handgun fire in response to teargas launchers.

UPDATE: producing live spot news broadcast is difficult. Never let anyone tell you otherwise. But I get the impression that the wheels are coming off cNN’s production the moment.

UPDATE: numerous reports of protesters firing handguns at the police. This is incredibly ominous – in the entire history of American protest, that has been extremely, extremely rare, especially in a nation that is as relatively heavily armed as the United States is.

ProtectMN: An Unreliable Source

I’ve been saying it for years.  It hardly bears saying again.

Heather Martens of “ProtectMN” – the gun-grabber group that used to be “Citizens for a Safer Supine Minnesota” – has never, not once, made a true, factual substantial statement about the Second Amendment or guns in America (barring the odd number or bit of trivia). 

Not one.  Ever. 

We’ve been documenting this fact for about a decade now.  The lies come in ones and twos, and sometimes in gale-force flurries.  She lies about criminals and about how criminals operate in the face of determined resistance; she lies about the law-abiding (no, lots, and lots more, sometimes reverting to puerile slander); she lies about her political opponents, and about elections, and, lately, about the results her “group” has on the public discourse.

She’s exploited race, she’s exploited crime victims,

And yet everytime a firearms issue crosses the public threshold – as they have been, this past two DFL-clogged sessions – the media beats a path to her door.  And not just the media that are paid for by the same people that pay Martens’ bills, or the little daisy-chain of lefty alt-media that paint Martens’ toenails when they get the chance.  No, even the mainstream media, the reporters who may or may not know anything about firearms but may try to do a fair job, whose editors want to see two sides to a story and don’t know an anti-gunner in Minnesota other than Martens (or the even less credible Jane Kay or Joan Peterson).

Still, that was then.  This is now. 

So as we head toward another session, I thought I’d reiterate my thesis:

Heather Martens has never
made a single true, substantial factual assertion

on firearms or the Second Amendment

I thought I’d demonstrate that ineluctable fact by taking a stroll through the ProtectMN website, as of today (11/19/14). 

The only real recent output from Martens is her post-election wrapup piece; the title alone, “Gun Sense Takes Big Wins in 2014 Midterm Elections”, is one for the ages. 

Yep, Heather – it was just a spectacular election day for the gun-grabbers:

In Minnesota, gun violence prevention champions Gov. Mark Dayton and Sen. Al Franken won re-election over NRA-endorsed opponents. “This election shows that campaigning on gun violence prevention is good politics in Minnesota,” said Heather Martens, Protect Minnesota’s executive director.

Dayton spoke a lot more about his support for hunting, and about the “two .357 Magnums” he supposedly keeps at home, than about background checks in both of his elections. 

 In Washington State, voters approved a ballot initiative to require background checks for gun sales, despite the NRA’s efforts to defeat it.

Martens is right about this, as far as she goes.  Of course, this issue may well turn out to be in Washington (at least the rural half of the state) what it was in Colorado.  Stay tuned. 

 In other races around the country, gun violence prevention champions won Senate seats in New Hampshire, Maine, Illinois, and Michigan.

In other words, some Democrat Senators held some safe Democrat seats where guns are not an issue. 

 In Pennsylvania, NRA-endorsed Tom Corbett was unseated by gun violence prevention champion Tom Wolf.

True – but guns were not on the top ten list of reasons that office flipped. 

The loss of Sen. Mark Pryor in Arkansas shows that trying to win the friendship of the NRA by voting against sensible gun laws is a bad idea. Pryor voted against the Manchin-Toomey background check amendment. According to Everytown for Gun Safety, the NRA spent $2.9 million this election to defeat him anyway.

So – replacing a Senator that got a C- (earned in part via the vote on the idiotic Manchin-Toomey) with A-rated Tom Cotton was a “victory for ‘Gun Sense’”, then?

Huh.

Rep. Dan Schoen, DFL-St. Paul Park, sailed to victory despite being targeted as “anti-gun” by the Minnesota gun extremist PAC.

News flash:  Democrat wins easy victory in Democrat district. 

Schoen authored legislation in 2014 to get guns away from domestic abuser, a bill that won overwhelming bi-partisan support.

Huh.  And did Heather Martens mention that Schoen’s bill got “overwhelming bi-partisan support” after, and because, he worked with the Gun Owners Civil Rights Alliance to turn it into a law that would help victims rather than merely punish gun owners without due process? 

No?

In the 8th Congressional district, Rep. Rick Nolan won re-election over Mills Fleet Farm scion Stewart Mills. A major campaign issue was Nolan’s support for background checks on gun sales. “Rep. Nolan proudly supports common-sense gun violence prevention. His opponent represented the interests of the gun industry,” Martens said.

I don’t live in the 8th, but while I did see lots of photos of Nolan posing with shooters, including a few strategically placed “assault rifle” owners, I don’t recall any talk (outside of safe DFL havens) about “background checks”. 

Perhaps this needs to be made more public for 2016? 

“This is in line with the nationwide success gun sense candidates had in this election.”

“Nationwide success” like anti-gun Democrats losing the Senate, falling further behind in the House, watching their leads among minorities whittled away to the lowest level in a decade, falling to under 40% of state legislative chambers, seeing their gains in Colorado erased largely due to Second Amendment issues,   (after a series of humiliating recall losses driven entirely by gun owners), losing the Minnesota House of Representatives, with Second Amendment issues being a significant reason for those losses nationally and in Minnesota, including having some of the more prominent anti-gun DFLers – Shannon Savick, Jay Sieling – erased and humiliated at the polls?

Keep the “big wins” coming, Heather!

Media people, all  you Tom Schecks and Bill Salisburys and Pat Kesslers; when you have a source whose veracity burns you 100% of the time, why do you keep using it?

Open Letter To African American Families

To: African-American families
From: Mitch Berg, public-school refugee
Re: War

All,

The Obama Administration talks a lot about “wars”; about a “war on women”, finding a “war against discrimination”, Michelle Obama’s “war on obesity”, continuing the “war on poverty”, and so on. In fact, just about the only thing the administration doesn’t call “war” is the part where they drop bombs on people who are shooting at us, or people that we are friendly with (at the moment).

But let’s be honest – the only war the administration is waging with any gusto is the war against you and your families.

That is all.

Solved!

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

East Coast town wants to ban all tobacco products, for the children
. Citizens object – today tobacco, tomorrow what next?
If St. Paul banned tobacco sales, it would cut into tobacco tax revenues which the State needs to pay for various stadia projects.
Would the DFL object? “You must allow your poorest citizens to buy products we know will kill them, so we can pay for the Billion-dollar playground where Million-dollar superstars on drugs play games to sell advertising for beer companies. We demand it. For the Wilfs.”
Probably not in so many words.
Joe Doakes

Not only is politics the least effective way to allocate resources – at times, it’s the most morally repugnant as well.

The Suspense Was Killing Us

Joe Doakes from Como Park emailed:

The President is preparing an Executive Order to open the Mexican border.

Border Patrol upper management just recalled half the M-4 carbines used by Border Patrol officers, for “refurbishment.”

M-4′s aren’t unique – couldn’t they borrow some from the Army? Why are Border Patrol agents being disarmed just as the borders are being flung open?

Wait, maybe I just answered my own question.

Joe Doakes

it’s never a hard guess…

Veterans Day

I never quite know what to say to veterans.

Hear me out, here.

Saying “thank you for your service” seems trite – almost mawkish.   Someone who never served saying “Thanks for going overseas and getting shot at!”?

See what I mean?

In the meantime, what I want to say is “glad you made it home”.  But I can see that being taken the wrong way.

http://www.rare-posters.com/5475.jpg

So I’ll wing it.

Veterans:  thanks for spending the best years of your lives in barracks, troops ships, foxholes, berthing spaces, CVC helmets, cockpits and gun mounts, doing things most of us can’t imagine, to protect the freedoms too many Americans take very much for granted.

It doesn’t roll off the tongue, but it doesn’t have to.

Separate But Equal

For starters, I think schools today resort to suspension way too quickly; sometimes it seems it’s the only sort of consequence schools offer anymore. There seem to be either no meaningful consequences to an action – or a three day vacation. And don’t kid yourself – that’s what suspension is, to any kid who’s actually getting suspended.

To the extent that black and Hispanic kids were getting suspended more? That’s at least partly the sign of a lazy administration.

But the news that the Minneapolis public schools have officially adopted a “separate but equal” system, where most students can be suspended without further ado, but black and Hispanic students require further review, makes me wonder if these people have ever heard of the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment.

Darned If You Do, Darned If You Don’t

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Obama is sending more troops to Iraq. Ordinarily, I’d use a colorful expression to explain why that’s a dumb idea. Not this time.

If I said “not our circus, not our monkeys,” then Liberals would gibber that I’m comparing Africans to Apes, proving I’m racissss.

And if I said “we don’t have a dog in that fight,” Liberals would howl that dogs are offensive to Muslims, proving I’m an intolerant religious bigot.

If I said “There is no Constitutional authority to deploy US troops to a foreign land without a Congressional declaration of war,” Liberals would solemnly opine that disputing The First Black Constitutional Scholar proves my utter ignorance of law and history.

So I’ll just say “it’s a dumb idea” and let it go at that.

Joe Doakes

If progressivism built the economy like it builds rhetorical gotchas, this country would be humming along right now.

Fruitcake. Literal. Not Government.

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

I need advice from SITD readers.

For nearly 20 years, I’ve ordered brandy-soaked Monastery Fruitcake from the Cistercian Monks at Holy Cross Abbey in Virginia. My mother served it to her old lady friends and their verdict was “It’s very good for store-bought,” which, coming from those people, is the second-highest possible rating behind “as good as my Mother used to make.”

The monks aren’t selling fruitcake this year. They’ve suspended fruitcake production for 2014 to embark on a spiritual renewal to deepen their commitment to monastic life. Arrrgh! Okay, yes, monks, spiritual, I get it. But where will I get my fruitcake???!!!

Recommendations?

Joe Doakes

They can’t possibly be the only fruitcake making monks in America, can they?

Takeaway

My big takeaway from last night?  Greater Minnesota gets it; The Metro really doesn’t.

The DFL-dominated Metro has been bringing the goodies home for the DFL-dominated Metro.

In Greater Minnesota?   Not so much.

For the past two years, the Metro got the nickel mine.  Greater Minnesota got the shaft.

And the results showed it.  Roz Peterson in Burnsville was the only flip to the GOP in the Metro (although it was a sweet victory indeed).  The rest of them?  Jim Knoblach winning back King Banaian’s seat by a recount-proof (barely) majoirity.  Jeff Backer trouncing Jay McNamar.  Josh Heintzeman and Dave Lueck flipping Crosby/Baxter corner of the Iron Range in style.  Jason Rarick tipping Tim Faust in Kanabec County.  Tim Miller beat Andrew Falk, Brian Daniels over Fritz, and Hancock taking Bemidji back from Roger Erickson.

One big winner last night – Minnesota gun owners.  DFLers from greater Minnesota largely deserted the Metrocrats during Michael Paymar and Alice Hausman’s gun-grab spree in 2013.  Shannon Savick, however, stuck with the Metrocrats.

And Peggy Bennett beat her like John Bonham pounding on a floor tom.

Measuring The Window-Boards

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Republicans take Minnesota House, Democrats retain Governorship, fundamental disagreement over amount and direction of spending. Another state government shut-down coming this Summer?

 

Republicans should start battle-space preparation in the media today. They can start by finding the list of all the “essential” services from the last shut-down, re-frame the debate by declaring all other spending has been judicially determined to be non-essential, and set the tone of the debate by demanding the Governor join them in refusing to waste taxpayer’s hard-earned money on “frivolous” spending. Every time he wants to justify the spending, claim he’s trying to overthrow the rightful powers of the judicial branch, which is Un-American.

Set up dozens of websites aimed at DFL legislators in purple districts: “Sen. Johnson’s Follies” to list all the stupid spending he voted for, with a big flashing total in alarming red letters saying “He wasted more money in three months than you’ll make in your LIFETIME. Tell him to STOP. Call him at this number.” Purely for educational purposes, of course, to inform the voters of his record.

And find somebody to start a series of Internet ads and bus shelter posters attacking Robber Barons Buying Minnesota Elections. Why should the Koch brothers be the only boogymen? Why not the Rockefellers?

And find somebody to start a Twitter hashtag proclaiming Extortion Elected Klobachar, to raise public awareness that unions are the biggest donors in Minnesota elections by far.

To run it, we need somebody really smart and also a little crazy. I’m thinking John Gilmore.

Joe Doakes

The possibilities abound.
Will the GOP – or, more importantly, Minnesota business – bite?

A Parable

(SCENE:  A small aircraft is flying over the prairie.  Inside the plane are:

  • Carpal POX:  a golf pro from Wayzata, and Vice Chair for Ideological Purity at the Minnesota 5th CD Libertarian Party
  • Viktor VON-SCHLIEFFENBERG-MOLTKE: a professional fraternity organizer, and Vice Chair for Education at the 5th CD Libertarian Party
  • Stephanie Marie ANNAN: Community Organizer for the Minnesota 5th CD Libertarian party.
  • Mitch BERG:  Guy, travelling space-available
  • Buck SAVAGE: The pilot. 

Suddenly, the right engine bursts into flames.  The plane begins to vibrate and starts to swerve to the right)

SAVAGE:  Crap!  Everybody grab a parachute!  We’ve gotta bail out!

VON-SCHLIEFFENBERG-MOLTKE:  Oh, dude! Is this like one of those jokes, where the Pope, Hitler and Kim Kardashian are in a plane and there’s only two parachutes? 

SAVAGE:  No, there’s five.  Hurry up and put one on…

ANNAN:  …or what?  The (makes scare quotes in the air) “plane” will “crash” and “kill” us “all”?  How do we know this? 

BERG:  Um, yeah – I’ll take a ‘chute.  Thanks. 

POX:  Wait – I think there’s a third option.  Or maybe several third options. 

VON-SCHLIEFFENBERG-MOLTKE:  That means like third through maybe millionth options, you douche!

POX:  Let’s think about this.  Who’s to say there’s any absolutes, here? 

BERG:  (Frantically donning parachute) I’d say “the plane is crashing” is pretty absolute.

ANNAN:  That’s assuming the parachutes work.  I’ve read that they don’t always work.  Sometimes they actually cause accidents. 

SAVAGE:  Look, ma’am, pretty soon the fire in the engine is going to melt the wing spar, and the wing is going to fall off and the plane will go into an uncontrollable spin, and the centrifugal force will pin you to the wall of the plane so hard you won’t be able to move. 

ANNAN:  Oh, don’t even get me started on the melting point of steel. 

BERG:  The wing spar is aluminum, isn’t it, Mr. Savage? 

SAVAGE:  Yeah…

POX:  Look, the point is that this is a fine time to brainstorm for more, better options than the ones our authority figure – no disrespect intended…

SAVAGE:  (Handle on the hatch handle) None taken.

POX:  …tells us.  Because the biggest problem with the human mind is that we allow authority figures to shackle our imagines, and the bounds of logic to dictate the parameters of the possible.  What other options are there besides “flaming death” and “parachute?”

BERG:  “Dying while engaging in navel-gazing magical thinking?”

POX:  Not quite in the spirit intended, but there are no bad ideas here…

VON-SCHLIEFFENBERG-MOLTKE:  Dude, I reject the premise that there’s any difference between the two.  Choosing one or the other merely perpetuates a binary system.  I’m not going to pick either one. 

SAVAGE:  Well, yeah – you will pick one.  Or more to the point, it’ll pick you. 

VON-SCHLIEFFENBERG-MOLTKE:  Don’t tase me, bro. 

POX:  Benghazi!  Benghazi!

(ANNAN and VON SCHLIEFFENBERG-MOLTKE giggle)

ANNAN:  I’m done talking with people who think in terms of “life” or “death” as absolutes. 

BERG:  Well, that’s a perfectly fine metaphysical and theological point, but crashing in the plane sort of moots the discussion. 

ANNAN:  That does it.  I’m shunning you. 

POX:  OK.  Fourth option; we concentrate real hard and levitate the plane?  Again, no bad ideas, here.  Any more? 

BERG:  So I pull this ring here? 

SAVAGE:  After we’re out of the plane. 

POX:  Some people just can’t be cured. 

ANNAN:  There is no difference between the disease and the cure. 

VON-SCHLIEFFENBERG-MOLTKE:  I’m totally posting this to Facebook. 

(BERG and SAVAGE jump, count to three, and pull the rip cords, as the plane, engine ablaze, sails into the distance). 

ANNAN (in the distance):  Bunch of ‘chutists.

VON-SCHLIEFFENBERG-MOLTKE and POX:  ‘Chutists!  ‘Chutists! 

(And SCENE)

Tightening

GOP gubernatorial candidate Jeff Johnson has been outspent at every turn of this race by the DFL noise machine. With a few exceptions, the media sandbagged him, and more importantly, ignored Gov. Dayton’s many glaring faws, consistently throughout the campaign.

Throughout all of that, Johnson has been counting on a late surge of independents throughout this race.

And maybe it’s starting to happen; The latest KSTP poll is showing some movement in the middle of the electorate:

In the governor’s race, incumbent Democrat Mark Dayton still leads Republican Jeff Johnson 47 percent to 42 percent. Hannah Nicollet of the Independence Party is at 2 percent tied with Libertarian candidate Chris Holbrook. Another 6 percent are either undecided or support other candidates. Dayton lead by 12 points a month ago and five points two weeks ago.
“Independents often swing elections and Mark Dayton had a lead among independents and that lead is now gone,” says Larry Jacobs of the University of Minnesota Humphrey Institute after reviewing our survey data. Independents are often a volatile block of voters. Two weeks ago Dayton led Johnson by six points among independents. Now he trails by 12.

and before you jump to conclusion that every single one of those undecided voters must the GOP for Johnson to have a chance – turnout also matters; if Democrats stay home, that’s good for another extra couple points for Johnson – at the very least more points the Democrats fraud machine is going to have to generate from thin air.

Dayton’s Budget: A Big Fat “F”

Cato’s 2014 Fiscal Policy report card gives Minnesota’s a resounding “F”, and it doesn’t mean “For Fiscally-Ingenious”.  The grade puts Minnesota eighth from the bottom in terms of fiscal policy:

Governor Dayton replicated his grade of “F” from the last Cato report card. Under Dayton, general fund spending increased 13 percent in 2013 and an estimated 4 percent in 2014. His poor score also stems from his large tax hikes. In 2012 he signed into law higher taxes on gaming. In 2013 he approved a package raising annual revenues by $1 billion, which is almost 5 percent of total state tax revenues. The package created a new top individual income tax rate of 9.85 percent above the current top rate of 7.85 percent. It also raised cigarette taxes by $1.60 per pack. In 2014 he partly reversed course and signed into law modest tax cuts that reduced estate taxes, ended the marriage penalty under the income tax, and reduced sales taxes on business purchases.

The net result?  We – the actual people of the state – are two billion short.

It was a richly-deserved “F”.

Priorities

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

We don’t have enough money to find a treatment for Ebola because we’re spending millions on stuff like this.
Joe Doakes

I forget who originally said it, once upon a time in the comment section of this blog, but a quote that needs to become part of our national rhetorical currency is “when you politicize science, you don’t get scientific politics; you get politicized science”.

Instrumentation

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Social Security is going up 1.7% next year, a small cost-of-living increase because there’s no inflation. At least, not officially. Not since the government changed the way it calculates inflation.
Here’s a chart showing the inflation rate would be around 6% if we still used the old way of measuring it, from when Reagan and Clinton were in office. That feels more like the decrease in purchasing power I’ve experienced at the supermarket.

20141024-061230-22350377.jpg

joe doakes

I believe it was during the early Clinton era that “Discouraged workers” and other ultra long-term unemployed were dropped from the “U1″ number – the top-line unemployment figure the media runs with.

Which is the only way the unemployment rate is below 6% nationwide, and at 4.5% in Minnesota.

The moral of the story? All statistics are just as good as the formula the statistician used to generate them.

Mission Creep

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Remember when all President Obama planned to do was cure the sick, end joblessness, slow the rise of the oceans, heal the planet, end war, secure our nation’s borders and restore our nation’s image abroad?
That was nothing.
Now he’s going to eliminate the the schism between Sunni and Shia that has been fueling so much of the violence in Syria, in Iraq.”
As Powerline asks:“Whoa! We are going to ‘eliminate the schism between Sunni and Shia?’ The schism that goes back to the 7th Century? And we are going to “eliminate the schism” through diplomacy?”
No. Not “we.” President Barack Obama, possibly assisted by Secretary of State John Kerry. After all they have promised to accomplish so far, why would you have any doubt? Nobel Committee, call your office.
Joe Doakes

If the president keeps changing the subject to things he won’t be able to accomplish before he leaves office, people will talk less about the things he hasn’t accomplished since he took office.

Just Oooooone More…

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Liberals want to raise the federal gas tax to provide for highway funding. Great, if the money actually went there. Politicians are too eager to dip into the Highway Trust Fund for mass transit, deficit reduction, underground storage tank removal . . . .
Every time they raise the issue, they tell the same lie: “This time it will be different. It will be for highways, bridges, infrastructure. Well, and bike path paintings on the road. And art. And relocation money for historically significant artifacts that are near major construction projects. Well, maybe something for racial harmony too.”
Joe doakes

There cold be a 12 step group for government spenders. Only with the government inflation rate and union guarantees it’d be more like 600 steps before long.

Emperor Barack The First

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Liberals resent the Constitution because the requirement to wait around for Congress to act constrains the President from doing good things for the country on his own initiative.
But for that pesky old scrap of parchment, the President would be doing all the things he won the Nobel Peace Prize for. If only he had the power to act.
In other words, they want a king.
joe doakes

“Progressivism” is fundamentally totalitarian.

Savage Was Right

Joel Doakes from Como Park emails:

More and more, Liberals remind me of the princess who couldn’t sleep on the pile of mattresses because there was a single pea under them. It tormented her, she was wretched, miserable, unable to function because of that tiny flaw in her otherwise perfect existence. Liberals act like that all the time:
That woman who was upset because opposing counsel was SHOUTING at her in email, a clear case of unprofessional cyber-bullying.
The school principal that expelled the 2nd grader who nibbled a Pop Tart into the shape of a dangerous assault weapon.
Barak Obama and Eric Holder claiming the only reason people are upset about their Anti-American policies is because of subtle, persistent racism.
It’s as if Liberals believe Disneyworld is the ideal world and if we all try just a teensy bit harder, we can make it happen in all our lives, everywhere, all the time, for free.
Living in a fantasy, unable to distinguish what is real from what is imaginary, that’s the definition of mental illness. Or Liberal. Take your pick.
Joe Doakes

they do seem to try to have things both ways…

Satirically Speaking

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

. Governor Mark Dayton (DFL- Minnesota) astounded his critics today by amending his legislative proposal to include $100,000,000 of new bonding authority for the Minnesota Housing Finance Authority. “for too long, Republicans have said the Democrats won’t put their money where their mouth is. That ends today” said governor dayton. “starting immediately, every state County School District and city employee must reside within 3 blocks of the light rail line. This will demonstrate our commitment to light rail and show the public that everyone in the government has the public best interest at heart. I, myself, am moving to an apartment at University Avenue and Western Avenue, so I can ride the light rail to the capital to work. This new bonding Authority will give the government money to subsidize employees mortgages so they can relocate closer to the right location. I encourage all Metro DFL representatives to do the same.”

That’ll happen when the Democrats in Congress sign up for Obamacare.

The Peter Judiciary

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

The President of the State Bar Association explains the drive to change how judgeships are filled:

“ . . . formalize our current informal practice of filling vacancies by gubernatorial appointment, rather than by election; implement a merit-selection process for judges at all levels of the judiciary; create an evaluation process where a commission comprising both lawyers and nonlawyers will assess judges’ performance based on objective criteria, and publicize these evaluations to the public; and require judges to take part in retention elections rather than participate in “contested” races that, in reality, are rarely contested and involve voters who often have little to no information about the judges whose names appear on the ballot.”

Right now, vacant judgeships are filled by election except when an untimely vacancy occurs, then the Governor appoints judges recommended by the Judicial Selection Commission. The Commission members are listed here and you can draw your own conclusions about whether they are likely to recommend Liberal candidates and whether a Democrat governor will select a Liberal candidate. Giving the Governor power to appoint all judges means control of the judiciary is removed one more step away from the people they’re supposed to serve, one more step toward total DFL control over all three branches of government.

The Commission is required to evaluate candidates based on the criteria in Subd. 8 of the statute. These criteria are not merit-based, they are almost entirely worthless. Only three of these criteria can be measured: are you a women, are you a minority and how many trials have you had? All the other criteria are so subjective the Commission doesn’t dare rely on them for fear of being labeled sexist, racist or part of the Old Boy Network. So basically, the best qualified candidates under the statutory criteria are the ones who have tried the most cases.

But counting trials is a lousy way to select judges. It’s a shoddy lawyer that takes every case to trial; real skill lies in negotiating an out-of-court settlement that satisfies all parties. The only lawyers who can afford to indulge in trying cases are prosecutors, public defenders and insurance defense lawyers, which explains why the trial bench and now the Court of Appeals is loaded with judges who have no experience in the wider practice of law such as family law and real estate law. That, in turn, explains some of the bizarre opinions issued by the Court of Appeals in recent years. It’s not that judges are howling idiots, they just don’t know any better.

Appointing judges who don’t know the law is bad enough. Expecting citizens to mount campaigns to remove those judges is worse. Far from institutionalizing excellence, we’ll be insulating mediocrities from any prospect of accountability. So – perfect for the DFL. Rotten for everyone else.

Joe Doakes

if there’s one thing the conservative side of the aisle has done very badly, it is explain why their constant fussing about judicial elections actually matters.

So I think Joe has done a great public service, here, today.