Anti-Woke Marketing

The PO police are setting their crosshairs on Home Depot:

Shoppers have taken to Twitter and other social media platforms to call for a boycott of Home Depot following news that one of its founders will back Donald Trump’s bid for a second term in the White House. 
In an interview with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Bernie Marcus said that he intends to support Trump’s re-election campaign, saying that while the president “sucks” at communication, his impact on employment and aggressive stances toward China and Iran have been positive.
Many on Twitter appeared to disagree.

Side note: Any “news” story that uses “…many people” as the source for a PC assertion should be required to name them all.

But I digress. This being modern Snowflake America, there are no doubt “many” people like this:

And being modern America, some execudrones are being pusillanimous.

Some executives just haven’t learned the lesson of this past decade .

To wit: Real Americans respect companies that stick to principle. They desert companies that don’t.

Thought Experiment

If I walked into your store with a sawed-off shotgun, demanded you hand over all your money, turned to leave with the loot, slipped on a banana peel, and cracked my head open, gushing blood all over the floor and rating a trip to the ER, would the local newspaper say I’d “donated blood” and “brought extra income to the local hospital?”

Only if I were a “progressive” who was the vessel of all the area’s media and Big Left felt about themselves.

Human Cudgels

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

They don’t. This author is mistaken. The left doesn’t love Islam, they hate The Beav.
You remember Leave it to Beaver, a typical show showing typical American society as it was? The left hates every single thing shown in that program. They are completely dedicated to reversing it.
Instead of men married to women, gay marriage. Instead of boys taught to act like men, boys taught to be girls. Instead of moms making home, moms building careers. Christianity, Automobiles, Law & Order, hard work, Fair play, pulling yourself up by your bootstraps, these are all hateful, despicable, horrible, no good, very bad ideas that the left must reverse
It is literally a case of throwing the baby out with the bathwater for them, but they don’t care. Social justice is a moral imperative. Sometimes you have to destroy the village in order to save it. And they are working feverishly with gas cans and matches to do just that.
Islam is simply one more stick to beat us with.

During World War 2, the Nazis recruited soldiers from Poland, Ukraine, Arabs, Asians, Russians – people who were slated to be enslaved at best, exterminated at worst. They were mans to the Nazi end.

Same with Muslims in the US and “Progressives”.

What Chu Wantin’ In De White Man’s World

Over this past weekend, I saw the movie “Rocket Man”, the Elton John biopic.

And while it was a good movie, as these things go – more below – it left me with one huge, nagging question unanswered.

To wit: what ghastly crime did Bernie Taupin see Reginald Dwight/Elton John commit, and promise to keep quiet about forever, in exchange for Elton John turning his “lyrics“ into songs?

Because it say what you will about Elton John’s music – I liked some of it – but Taupin was the one lyricist in the history of the world that can’t get away with mocking and taunting Desmond Child.

There simply has to be some ghastly conspiracy. There’s no other rational explanation.


More seriously, now – I did in fact see the movie over the weekend.

Truth be told, I was way too cool for Elton John when he was at his peak. I loved the Clash, the Ramones, Springsteen, the Iron City Houserockers, Television, Emmylou Harris, the Pretenders – all the stuff that the rest of the kids in my high school weren’t listening to. It was how a tall, geeky nerd with no athletic talent stood out from the crowd (or thought he did).

And I never had much time for pop stars disintegrating in public, as I watched Elton John (among many other celebs back then) collapse in a welter of excess, booze and cocaine. “You think you got it tough?”, I muttered, reading every week in the pages of “Rolling Stone” down at the library. It’s why I had no time for a lot of seventies pop stars; half the reason I couldn’t stand Styx as a kid was Dennis DeYoung’s constant whinging about what a meaningless illusion being a star was; “then go back to Chicago and work in a ^%$#@ meatpacking plant and make some room for someone else”, I muttered.

And he was a piano player. Nothing against keyboard people – I always wanted to be decent on keys. But they have a very different approach to music than guitar players do. Some of his stuff, like most of “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road”, was marvelously melodic, in the kind of way that piano players can tease out of a song in a way guitar players can’t.

So Elton John was…well, not a non-entity for me as a kid. His public image was something that annoyed me; his music sometimes grabbed me (“Someone Saved My Life Tonight” was guilty pleasure), some didn’t.

Anyway.

“Rocketman” is billed as a “fantasy biopic”, which started me off thinking “what could go wrong?”.

Short answer: Nothing!

In its own way, telling the story of Elton John’s path – from neglected child to piano prodigy to sideman to “overnight star” (it actually took him eight years of gigging, song-writing and session work, given very short shrift in the movie) to one of the biggest selling singers of all time, to recovering addict and, we’re told at the end, happy, loved, well-adjusted elder, is a lot more interesting in the telling that it was in the watching 30-40 years ago. Taron Egerton plays a better Elton John than Elton John himself ever did.

One interesting bit, if you’re a serious music trivia buff; there’s a scene where John and longtime lyricist Bernie Taupin are auditioning for a manager (in a scene that could have come out of every iteration of “The Jazz Singer” or “The Star Is Born”). The manager asks John to play some of his stuff. John, at the piano, tosses out a few songs that the manager cuts off immediately…

…that are actually from the early ’80s, when John and longtime Taupin were on the outs – things like “I Guess That’s Why They Call It The Blues” and other stuff from John’s fallow years after going through treatment. The manager only warmed up when John played “Border Song”.

It was just one of the ways in which John – one of the movie’s executive producers – seemed to be saying that his career without Bernie Taupin was never quite what it should have been. Every single non-John/Taupin song is associated with failure, with bottoming out (as when “Victim of Love”, one of John’s most vapid songs, is playing in the background during a scene when he meets the partner in his ultimately sham 1984 marriage). In some ways, Taupin is every bit as much the star of the movie as John is.

So I won’t be coy about it – it’s a lot better than I expected.

People Are Basically Trash

Today would have been Anne Frank’s 90th birthday.  

Erin Blakemore has an excellent article on how the Attic may, or may not, have been discovered by the Nazis and their collaborators.  

And I urge you to read Blakemore’s twitter thread (starting below) about the anger she feels seeing the remarks in Frank’s diary about believing in her heart in the goodness of people are so often ripped out of context today:

If you keep reading, you’ll note that Frank – who wrote that three weeks before the Attic was raided – went on to say she had a harder and harder time believing that. Justifiably so.

The Diary of Anne Frank wasn’t the first book I ever read about the Holocaust – The Black Book, Treblinka and Escape from Sobibor all came first – but it was one of many things that convinced me that the hopey-changey of the left were at best a trifle and at worst bait. It started me down the road toward being a Reagan Conservative, a 2nd Amendment activist, and someone who eschews horror movies. Who needs to watch The Walking Dead – cable TV’s excellent show about the complete collapse of civilization – when it’s all right there in history?

Why Trump Will Win In 2020: Exhibit AOC-449

One article that’s been providing some fascinating insights into politics (as well as bits and piece of my personal life) over the past couple of years) is “20 Diversion Tactics Highly Manipulative Narcissists, Sociopaths And Psychopaths Use To Silence You” by Shahida Arabi.

And yes, I know – “Narcissism” is the pop-psych diagnosis du jour meaning “someone I really don’t like”, these days. I’ll ask you to consider my argument on its merits, rather than its resonance with a pulsing mob of pop culture droogs.

Anyway – tactic #3 is called “Nonsensical conversations from hell” – sometimes called “word salad”:

Malignant narcissists and sociopaths use word salad, circular conversations, ad hominem arguments, projection and gaslighting to disorient you and get you off track should you ever disagree with them or challenge them in any way. They do this in order to discredit, confuse and frustrate you, distract you from the main problem and make you feel guilty for being a human being with actual thoughts and feelings that might differ from their own. In their eyes, you are the problem if you happen to exist.

Now, it could be I’m partaking in the pop-culture kool-aid, but I can’t be the only one who thought “word salad” when I they read this.

“Earthers”

Remember when Democrats tittered with glee at the (small) number of Republians who were obsessed over Barack Obama’s birth certificate?

They can all, every one of them, shut up now:

…according to a Rasmussen poll released today, a staggering 67 percent of Democrats believe Ocasio-Cortez’s climate change warning to be completely legit.
According to the poll, 48 percent of all likely voters agree that the United States has only twelve years left to fight climate change before the effects are irreversible. The poll did not identify Ocasio-Cortez or Bernie Sanders (who still believes the doomsday prediction to be true) while conducting the survey. According to the poll, 40 percent disagree with the prediction, and 11 percent are undecided.

The most fascinating thing about the poll, aside from the large percentage of Democrat sea sponges who believe the 12-year prediction, is how the number of voters who believe it has skyrocketed in just a few months. When Rasmussen first polled on this issue back in January, after Ocasio-Cortez first publicly made her prediction, only 23 percent of voters agreed with it. Back in January, however, only 34 percent of Democrats believed what Ocasio-Cortez says only a sea sponge would have taken seriously. This shows the incredible influence the socialist wing of the Democratic Party has on the party as a whole.

Having Tide Pod Evita as your thought leader is like having Jesse Ventura as your charm school superintendant.

Human Shield

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Remember this drawing?  It ran during the last Arab-Israeli conflict, to illustrate the moral difference between the tactics used by the two sides.

That kid who’s on all the news shows, David Hogg, the one demanding gun control?  The Left insists nobody is allowed to disagree with his silly proposals because as a shooting survivor, he has absolute moral authority.  And he’s just a kid, so arguing with him is “punching down.”  Ya big bully. 

I strongly suspect he’s an example of the Palestinian side of the drawing.  He’s the child shielding the people behind him.  They are the true evil.  Their tactics reveal it.

Joe Doakes

He’s sort of the Cindy Sheehan of the 2010s.

Pile On

For all of their bluster between the election and the beginning of session, it seems the DFL doesn’t have enough votes to pass their Registration and Red flag Confiscation bills on their own. Not even close.

Which is weird. You would think a bill with “90% public support“ would be a cakewalk. Apparently not his; if you rely on the star Tribune for a fact on this issue, that’s pretty much the norm. The DFL are trying to bury the bills in the Public Safety omnibus spending bill

It’s the weasel‘s way out. But hey, Ryan Winkler. Say no more.

Anyway – if you are a supporter of Minnesotans’ Second Amendment human rights, now is the time to pylon. Call your legislator. Tell them you are not amused.

A whole lot of suburban DFL‘s seem to have gotten cold feet. Let’s make them colder.

The Atlantic: Like Reading Shot In The Dark Years After The Fact

Sometime back around the time Steven Colbert got a job on late-night TV, late night TV stopped being funny.

Well, funny in the conventional sense, meaning “it arouses some kind of amused reaction from me”.

And it’s not a political thing; I laughed at Dennis Miller just as hard when he was a smug liberal as I do now that he’s a 9/11 conservative of sorts. His White Album – a one-hour monologue from 25-odd years ago – is no less funny than it was when it came out. I didn’t laugh any harder at Norm MacDonald after his low-key and sometimes incongruous conservatism started coming out – he’s just a comic genius. Chris Rock, Dennis Leary, Sam Kinison – all of them are hilarious, and to some degree or another way, way to my left.

There may be no greater litmus test of American social views than one’s opinion of Michelle Wolf’s “comic” routine at last year’s White House Correspondents’ Dinner. Most people think it was pretty dreadful – but the consensus among NPR hosts for the past year has been pretty rapturous. (The free market spoke loud and clear – her Netflix talk show flamed out faster than the sales curve on a Mick Jagger solo album).

Judge for yourself:

The noted conservative tool Andrew Ferguson, and that noted conservative fishwrap The Atlantic, calls it out…:

There had been lots of anti-Trump demonstrations lately, Wolf noted, with protesters carrying homemade signs. How many signs? “Poster board is flying off the shelves faster than Robert Mueller can say, ‘You’ve been subpoenaed!’” If there’s humor in Paul Ryan’s circumcision—and I’m willing to be persuaded—she failed to find it. Chris Christie, Wolf suggested, was fat. She provided her own kind of abortion counseling: If you do terminate a pregnancy, she advised, motioning oddly with her elbow, “you’ve gotta get that baby outa there.” At her last line she leaned intimately into the microphone: “Flint still doesn’t have clean water.”

…among many examples of the complete death of comedy. He refers to late night TV – but I’m pretty sure it’s all of pop culture; political “comedy”, at least as understood by mainstream popular culture, is dead.

Simplify

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

I’m a W-2 employee with employer provided health insurance.  My wife is retired, collecting Social Security and a pension.  We buy license tabs, pay interest on our home mortgage and give to charity.  We adjusted our withholding so we break even – no refund but nothing due.  With the new simplified tax code, we should be able to file our tax return on a postcard, right?  But no, State and Federal is 17 pages.  I lack the skill to file on paper and lack the patience to play with software so I pay a tax preparor $200 to dot the “I’s” and cross the “T’s.”
If we lived in a socialist country, I wouldn’t have to deal with any of that.  They government would pay for all my expenses and keep everything I earn aside from doling out a small allowance, same as when I was a kid living with my parents.  It’s beginning to appeal to me.
Joe Doakes

As long as I’m the “parent”, I sure don’t mind.

Somehow, that seems unlikely.

Silence Is Golden

When the police and prosecutors talk with you in relation to allegations of criminal activity, you have the right to remain silent and ask for a lawyer to keep you from saying something stupid or even just inadvertent that can end up putting you in jail.  

And it doesn’t even have to be anything you say to the cops. 

A few  years ago, during the “Black LIves Matter” protest at Minneapolis’ Fourth Precinct, a fellow with a carry permit, Alan Scarsella,  shot and wounded someone from a group of protesters that was chasing him.   His fear of immediate death and great bodily harm was real; he attempted to retreat, running a whole block before firing back; he used the force needed to end the threat (the chase stopped cold when he fired).  

But on the way to the protest, he and his idiot friends made some videos, including some statements (which may or may not have been quotes) that the county prosecutor managed to get before the jury as racist provocations that, in the end, negated Scarsella’s attempt to prove that he wasn’t the aggressor in the jury’s eyes.  He got convicted and sentenced to seven years.  

So if you’re a good guy or gal with a gun who, heaven forfend, winds up shooting someone in self-defense, everything you say can and will be used against you – even things you say long before the episode in question, unrelated to the shooting.  

I thought about that when the media started covering this story – a Saint Paul homeowner shot a suspected car thief. 

And what picture did the Strib, and then every single gun-grabber group, run with?

Photo via the Strib’s Sharon Prather.

From the Strib, with emphasis added:

A 36-year-old man with a gun was with the suspect when police arrived, and he identified himself to officers as the homeowner, police said. He cooperated with the investigation and was arrested Tuesday night on suspicion of aggravated assault.
The Star Tribune typically does not name suspects who have not been charged.
Police found the man who had been shot in the side yard of the house after hearing gunfire, said Sgt. Mike Ernster.
A sign in the window of the house read, “No trespassing. Violators will be shot. Survivors will be shot again!” The sign punctuates the message with drawings of bullet holes.

The guy – guys, really – are innocent until proven guilty. And Berg’s 18th Law is still in full effect.

But will the police and county attorney – who both cordially detest the law-abiding gun owner and dislike the notion of the Good Guy With A Gun, use this sign as evidence to logroll a jury, if necessary, into believing that the homeowner, whatever the actual situation, was looking for a chance to use his right to keep and bear arms on someone who “had it coming”?

Yes.

Why embroider it?

If you are a gun owner who is concerned about self-defense, it is imperative that you stop writing on social media, putting stickers on your car, or posting your house with signs talking about what you intend to do to alleged criminals with your firearms.

It’s the same thing I wrote back when I did own guns. I’d never buy another, of course. Guns terrify me.

The Metaphysics Of Beans

As I noted last month, I’ve spent the past year losing almost 80 pounds.

In that time, I’ve discussed the issue with a few of my friends, many of them who like many Americans could stand to lose a few pounds. More than a few of them have responded “I could never give up…” pasta or ice cream or popcorn or whatever. And I do get that. None of them were easy for me to give up – and now that I’ve lost the weight, I indulge once in a while – but when I was in the middle of things, my response was and remains “nothing tastes as good as getting healthier feels”.

But I’ve gotten a response from a few others that’s caused me to think a little higher up the sociological food chain.

My mom wasn’t a bad cook when I was a kid – but dinner time was a matter of being together, rather than about the food, per se. There wasn’t a lot on the menu that had deep cultural or social significance for us, other than maybe my grandma’s lefse.

Dinner was about eating and family. Not pseudo-mystical connection to food itself.

I’ve met people for whom things are quite the opposite; for whom “foodie-ism” is either a nerd outlet, like being a Star Wars buff, or a pseudoreligion. Our culture caters to both; from the “Food Network” to the celebrity chef culture, there are parts of our culture that totemize, even fetishize, food to one degree or another.

Or that’s my theory.

I thought about this over the weekend, when I listened to “The Delicious Dish”…

…I’m sorry, that was an SNL spoof of NPR.

No, I was listening to “Splendid Table”, a show that used to be a pretty accessible recipe show with Lynne Rosetto-Casper, but has turned almost as serious-about-itself as “On Being with Krista Tippett”.

And I was treated to this:

Lucy Long: I lived in Spain for a year. Part of what I was doing was studying the food culture, and people kept telling me that I needed to go to the north of Spain during a certain season and try their bean soups. I was told that every village had their own variety of bean and would make these into soup or stew. And people who were knowledgeable about this tradition, they could look at a bean and tell that it came from a particular village. They’d spend a day, maybe a weekend, traveling to these villages to eat these beans.
I did go to one or two restaurants in villages and try these. To me, it was just bean soup. I was eating out of curiosity. I didn’t have enough knowledge to fully appreciate the distinctions that were being made. I wasn’t going there as a pilgrim; I was going there as a tourist. I could definitely tell that some of the other eaters were there as pilgrims because they were eating very carefully, they were tasting very carefully, and they were experiencing this on a much deeper level that just eating some bean soup.

And leaving aside the pretension in which the show marinades, it struck me – could the fetishization of foodie-ism be part of our problem?

Maybe not by itself: I doubt that people trekking through Spain to catalog seasonal beans are the ones getting Type 2 Diabetes.

On the other hand, I have to think the fact that our society’s been turning food into recreation, network entertainment, a social marker can’t help, either.

CRISIS AVERTED!

California isn’t on the brink of bankruptcy.

Their public unions haven’t passed Illinois and Maryland’s as models of corruption, featherbedding and incompetence.

Their education system doesn’t give New York’s a run for it’s money as a two-tiered money pit.

Their society isn’t becoming an almost third-world example of the wealth gap between Malibu and Riverside.

That’s why they’ve got time for this kind of thing – a ban on long cash-register receipts:

Modeled after a new state law requiring that plastic straws be given in restaurants only upon request, the bill would require businesses to provide electronic receipts by default unless a customer asks for a paper one.Assembly Bill 161 by Assemblyman Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) said his bill is an easy way to reduce paper waste in the state while addressing consumers’ frustrations with excessively long receipts. Customers have taken to social media for years to complain and poke fun at the size of their receipts, particularly at CVS drugstore, posting pictures of the coupon-packed printouts measuring taller than a refrigerator.

“If we are looking at reducing waste, probably the easiest thing we can do is get rid of the material that someone hands us that we don’t want that we hold onto until we get to the next trash can and then throw away,” said Nick Lapis of Californians Against Waste, a bill supporter.

I can think of some waste to reduce…

#NotMe

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

In the olden days, young men found a mate at school, or at work, or at social functions. But nowadays, with feminism and #metoo, it’s risky to ask.
I recently met a guy who’s 40, has his MBA, good job, clean health, clean record, but no girlfriend. He explained it this way: if I ask a girl and she says no, I’ll be alone and humiliated. If I don’t ask her, I’ll still be alone, but I won’t be humiliated. And I can’t be reported to HR.
This is why America seems broken, why average IQ is decreasing, why young people increasingly feel they have no future. They’re right, they don’t.
Joe doakes

Why, it’s almost as if progressivism set out to destroy this nation’s morale from within.

Graphing Madness

SCENE: Mitch BERG is hacking down shrubbery for the spring. Avery LIBRELLE, walking past, hears the chainsaw and walks around the front of BERG’s house.

LIBRELLE: Merg!

BERG: Er, hey, Avery. Kinda busy here…

LIBRELLE: The US has more guns than any country in the world, and the highest death rate.

BERG: As you can see here… (produces a chart from his back pocket) …

…while per-capita civilian gun ownership is high – and has gotten higher since the data in that chart – our gun homicide rate is actually down the list a ways.

LIBRELLE: Hah! To laugh! Most of those countries with higher murder rates aren’t industrial?

BERG: So?

LIBRELLE: Do I need to speak slowly? They a r e n ‘ t i n d u s t r i a l.

BERG: No, I got that. So what? Is the life of a brown or black person, or a subsistence farmer, worth less than the life of a white middle class liberal American?

LIBRELLE: Why, no!

BERG: Then why do we not count their deaths the same?

LIBRELLE: Do you have any arugula?

(And SCENE)

Just Can’t Win

Two weeks ago: conservatives got criticized for “pouncing” on “Progressive” hubris, overreach, hypocrisy and factual illiteracy.

This week: we get criticized for not pouncing:

Why, it’s almost like nothing we can do is going to make them happy.

Theater Of The Vapid

Denied a chance to run the policy table by the fact that they don’t control the Senate, DFLers in the upper house are going to try to bully and shame Republicans into submission with today’s “Committee On Banned Bills” “hearing” at the Senate.

“These bills have huge public support and are common sense ideas,” Sen. Little continued, “They’ve been banned for completely crass partisan reasons; because they are targeting certain seats, and don’t want to give certain people any achievements to campaign with. But the senate can’t make good decisions if major options aren’t even on the table. Partisan games like this are rigging our democracy, and blocking bills that voters really want.” 
The Senate Committee on Banned Bills (COBB) is slated to review the proposed bills, take testimony from citizens and expert witnesses [of the caliber of Nancy Nord Bence – Ed.], and debate the merits of each policy.  A wide array of bills will be introduced during the hearing, including legislation dealing with paid family medical leave, gun safety, and the health care provider tax [agenda and complete list of members and bills below].

The bills include:

  1. SF 434 – Latz – Universal gun registration
  2. SF 399 – Hayden – MinnesotaCare provider tax repeal
  3. SF 1012 – Torres Ray – Increase Teachers of Color Act strengthening and appropriation
  4. SF 1060 – Kent – Paid family, pregnancy, bonding, and applicant’s serious medical condition benefits establishment; employment leaves authorization and regulation; data classification authorization and appropriation 
  5. SF 856 – Champion – Right to vote restoration upon incarceration release or sentencing imposition; county attorney voter registration and eligibility investigation obligation repeal
  6. SF 208 – Pappas – Resolution memorializing Congress to remove the deadline for ratification of the equal rights amendment by the states
  7.  SF 200 – Cohen – Constitutional amendment for gender equality under the law

These are the DFL’s priorities – and they clearly believe there are enough uninformed people out there to give them a win.

They may be right.