I oppose the death penalty.  I oppose  it for one reason; the inevitability of executing the innocent.

It’s not that no case has ever made me want to see some one eaten by mice, of course.  Classic example; the Susan Smith case.  Smith was convicted twenty years ago of pushing her car, with her kids strapped into the back, into a lake to their deaths.  At the time she was alleged to be involved with another guy, and killed her boys to keep their father from getting custody.

She’s “setting the record straight“.

I read it.

I’ll stick with the mice.

Our Idiot Elite: Freedom Is Slavery, Winston

Was there a time when being published in The New Yorker meant you were a better, smarter, more capable writer than, say, a liberal blogger?

I dimly remember such a time.

But in reading Kalefa Sanneh’s “The Hell You Say” – an apologia for gutting the First Amendment and letting government decide how much freedom of speech we really need, because that’s the way Europe does it.

It’s a target-rich environment of bad research and lazy writing, a bit of journalism of entitlement that would fit in on Minnesota Progressive Project.

Yep.  That bad.

I picked one bit – in which Sanneh argues that unregulated speech as we know it really only started in the past 100 years due to – wait for it – white privilege:

This, in essence, was Justice Holmes’s rationale, in 1919, when he argued in an influential dissent that antiwar anarchists should be free to agitate. “Nobody can suppose that the surreptitious publishing of a silly leaflet by an unknown man, without more, would present any immediate danger,” he wrote. Free-speech advocates typically claim that the value of unfettered expression outweighs any harm it might cause, offering assurances that any such harm will be minimal. But what makes them so sure? America’s free-speech regime is shot through with exceptions, including civil (and, in some states, criminal) laws against libel.

Right.  But defamation requires both untruth and actual, tangible, real damages.  It’s intentionally hard to win a defamation / libel case.  For good reason.

By what rationale do we insist that groups—races, communities of faith—don’t deserve similar protection?

Races?  Who would file the petition?

Communities of faith?  Boy, are us Christians going to go to town when we lawyer up.

Many free-speech arguments turn on a deceptively simple question: what is speech? It’s clear that the protected category excludes all sorts of statements. (The First Amendment will be of no use to someone who writes a fraudulent contract, or who says, “Hand over your wallet and iPhone,” and means it.)

And in not knowing the difference between Speech and Robbery,Sanneh has not only forever destroyed The New Yorker as a source of useful journalism, but ousted Grace Kelly from her throne as the least cogniscent writer in the world.

The howlers come with a density that I’ve only rarely encountered, much less tackled.

Indeed, so insidiously bad is the piece that Greg Lukianoff mobilized ten free speech advocates to tackle and beat Saleh’s piece unconscious.

Read Sanneh to see the id of today’s left in action.

Read Lukianoff to see it dismembered.

There’s your assignment for the day.


Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

The weather was too nice to sit in the office [last week] so I cut out early and took my 11-year-old grandson to the shooting range.  He already knows how to shoot a bow and a shotgun, thanks my son-in-law.  I had planned to let the boy try a single-action .22 revolver first, then work our way up to bigger guns on a later visit.  Didn’t happen.


Every member we met asked: “Would you like try this gun?  Here, let me show you how it works.”  He ended up shooting several revolvers and semi-auto pistols, an AR variant, a brand-new 9mm carbine and finally an exquisitely preserved 70-year-old .30 caliber M1 carbine that I suspect is worth more than my car.


All these people, spending a few moments of their time and donating their own ammunition to show some kid they never met how to shoot a different gun . . . that’s how a cultural heritage is preserved.  It’s passed down from the grandparents’ generation, from people who are thrilled to see a young person take an interest in something us oldsters have loved our whole lives long.




Joe Doakes

It’s heartwarming.

No, I”m not being glib or sarcastic.

Labor Pains

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

The Donald says illegal immigrants have to go.  The Wa-Po is clutching its pearls – that would wreak havoc!  Would it?

Wa-Po says work now done by illegal immigrants wouldn’t get done: picking crops, hotel maids, day laborers, nannies and gardeners.  Hmmm, that’s the same argument made by the South to defend slavery.  Seems to me the answer is the same: the market will adjust.  Work that isn’t economical to be done, won’t be done; work that must be done will no longer be done at below-market wages, it’ll be done by machine or by hiring Americans at living wages.  Yes, prices will go up.  Low prices don’t justify open borders.

Trump offers to keep families together when the illegals go. What about mixed families with one legal and one illegal parent?  They can choose: both can go or legal residents can stay.  Sad marital choices shouldn’t drive national policy.

What about illegals who’ve been here a long time?  That only means you’re a career criminal, it doesn’t justify the crime.

What about children who were born in America and have birthright citizenship?  Parents can choose: take your kids with you or leave them here with legal residents.  Having a child doesn’t mitigate your crime any more than if you were a bank robber.

Ordinary Americans don’t have a problem with these proposals because if we have to follow the law, so should everybody else.  The people having a hissy are the one-percenters who’ll be inconvenienced having to find new nannies and gardeners.  That’s a poor basis to set national policy and the best justification I can think of, to change it.

Joe Doakes

Me?  I’d just settle for a high fence, and some clear policies for legal immigration.  As, it happens, would most Latinos.  The ones who are citizens of the US, anyway.

Doakes Sunday: Priorities, Redux, Redux

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Donald Trump isn’t the only one talking about the dangers of unlimited immigration.  Everything Britain’s Foreign Secretary says about immigration applies equally to the US, where even the Department of Labor admits that since the start of the recession in 2007, all net job gains for women have gone to immigrants.


Britain is trying to stop legal immigrants at the border.  The Obama Administration assists illegal immigrants to resettle across America. Who is trying to save their country, and who to destroy it?


Joe Doakes

Salvation is destruction, Winston.

Doakes Sunday: Big Talk

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

This is disturbing.  These people are delusional.  And nobody is calling them on it, which is the same as encouraging them to it.


We’re ready for war!”


No, you’re not.  Unarmed looters are not ready for war.  Teenagers shooting pistols sideways, are not ready for war.  You’re ready for a “war” like the War on Poverty, where somebody hands you free stuff.  You’re ready for a “war” like the Palestinians, where you stage fake outrages for sympathetic media.


You’re not ready for the kind of war you’re likely to get if you stop shooting each other in the ghetto and come out to the suburbs where the hunters live, where a 9mm pistol is not a terror weapon but an object of derision, where even liberal Democrats own a shotgun and deer rifle with ammo on hand and experience using it.  Your weapons are useless beyond a city block, you have no food supplies for extended conflict or medical supplies to treat wounded.  Your communications are cell phones until the authorities shut off the towers.  Your tricked-out Buicks have limited transport load and no off-road maneuvering capability.  Your enemy won’t be wearing uniforms for easy identification, they’ll be in makeshift blinds, wearing camouflage, using 3x scopes and defending their own turf.


The government would no doubt call out the military to preserve order, attempting to disarm the suburbanites while providing asafe space for rioters.  Might work.  Or some hothead homeowner might shoot some National Guardsmen and then all bets are off.


Chant all you want, in the ghetto.  Shoot each other, rob your own stores, burn the entire thing down, if that’s what makes you happy.  Just don’t start believing your own fantasies.  That would get real ugly, real quickly, with no winner in sight and no clear path to victory.


Joe Doakes

This blog eschews big, bloody-minded talk, no matter who it’s from.

Which puts me 50% ahead of the Department of Homeland Security.


From the news about the shooting last week, in which a citizen with a carry permit shot Laurentai Broadbent, age 16, as he tried to rob him:

A memorial service was held for Broadbent at Memorial Park on Aug. 2, during which a white Mercedes crashed into a water fountain and the monuments. Shots were also fired.

No word on whether any Confederate flags were involved.

The Right Profile

SCENE:  Mitch BERG is watching fireworks from a bluff over the Mississippi River.  Avery LIBRELLE, carrying an overstuffed bag of bug spray, sun parasols and other outdoor gear, lurches up behind him.  

LIBRELLE:  Hey, Merg!  We need to control guns in our society!  The New York Times says so!

BERG:  Right. we talked about that the other day.  Why do you think that?  In your own words, please.

LIBRELLE:   Because we don’t want every fat, overweight, bald, red-faced, out-of-shape racist sexist anti-government Christian Tenther  Extremist in the square states having guns!

BERG:  Huh.  What was that demographic again?

LIBRELLE:  Fat, overweight, bald, red-faced, out-of-shape racist sexist anti-government Christian Tenther  Extremists!  The ones who are likely to become terrorists!

BERG:  Huh.  Speaking of which – the cops are scrutinizing radical mosques to find links to terror…


BERG:  …what?

LIBRELLE:  Profiling is wrong!


The Killer App

I just thought of the app that’s going to make me a millionaire.

Remember the class web games “Hot Or Not” and “Kill, Bang or Marry?” Where you’d look at photos of people of your preferred gender and select “Hot” or “Not” or whatever?

My idea: publish writings, photomemes and tweets from notable “new* atheists.  Like this bit, ostensibly from John Malkovich…


…who is a great actor but, clearly, not much for classical logic.  (Is it an actual Malkovich quote?  I don’t know, and for my purposes at the moment it doesn’t actually matter).

Then, we categorize them as one of the following:

  • “Angry Lapsed Catholic with Mommy/Daddy Issues”
  • “Gay person, angry about the book of Leviticus and/or “the church’s” not accepting same-sex marriage.”
  • “Wannabe Empiricist with the gold-plated strawmen, metal-flake red herrings, and a very selective sense of science”
  • “Giggly Cultural Vandal who can’t imagine anything bigger than them in the universe”.
  • “Eurotrash – usually French – cultural imperialist”.

The hard part, after writing the code, will be coming up with snappier descriptions of the options.

Vicious Circle

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

It’s videos like the arrest of Sandra Bland, of cops who act like that, that make ordinary citizens lose respect for all police, which makes police feel more insular and more dependent on each other so they close ranks to protect all cops, even the crappy ones.  It’s a self-inflicted vicious cycle.

And the fact it’s a White cop abusing a Black woman on video isn’t just bad optics; in this Presidency, it’s automatically a racial incident.  The cops as a whole can’t seem to understand that each of these incidents not only inflames the Black community, it’s distasteful to the White community too and reduces our willingness to put up with it.

Look for some cops to get ambushed soon.  That’s how things are handled in the strata of society that can’t raise $500 bail to get their loved one out of a Texas jail – they have no meaningful access to the “justice” system so they utilize “alternative dispute resolution” which comes in 9mm parcels.

I took vacation days to stand the flag line with the Patriot Guard to honor fallen Marines returned from the war.  Armed citizens are taking vacation days to stand guard outside unarmed recruiting centers in Tennessee.  Nobody would volunteer to stand guard over cops having lunch so they aren’t ambushed.  There’s a deep and important lesson there, if only they would learn it.

Joe Doakes

Joe says “look for cops to get ambushed soon”; not sure if he’s counting the two New York cops killed late last year, in the wake of the Ferguson and Garner incidents.

In my 22 years in Saint Paul, I’ve met some good cops, and I’ve met some bad ones.  But it’s dawned on me in recent years that at the moment, “Law Enforcement” as an institution is perilously close to becoming the “Standing Army” that our forefathers warned us about; the arrogant mercenaries that care less about the people they’re defending than about the government that pays them.

I’m hoping some of the good cops figure this out sooner than later.

Parts Is Parts

Another day?  Another, even more cynical, Planned Parenthood executive caught on video haggling over prices for “not yet human” organs, presumably for actual humans:

A second undercover video shows Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s Medical Directors’ Council President, Dr. Mary Gatter, haggling over payments for intact fetal specimens and offering to use a “less crunchy technique” to get more intact body parts.

It is similar to last week’s viral video showing PPFA Senior Director of Medical Services Dr. Deborah Nucatola admitting to using partial-birth abortions to get intact parts and suggesting a price range of $30 to $100 per specimen.

I can imagine Josef Mengele having a conversation like this:

Gatter twice recites Planned Parenthood messaging on fetal tissue collection, “We’re not in it for the money,” and “The money is not the important thing,” but she immediately qualifies each statement with, respectively, “But what were you thinking of?” and, “But it has to be big enough that it’s worthwhile for me.”…By the lunch’s end, Gatter suggests $100 per specimen is not enough and concludes, “Let me just figure out what others are getting, and if this is in the ballpark, then it’s fine, if it’s still low, then we can bump it up. I want a Lamborghini.”

I’m sure she’ll get one, too.

It’s Only A Conundrum If You Have A Soul

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

So let me understand: it’s noble to kill babies but wicked to sell their corpses?  Nope, still not getting it.

Better still:  infanticide enthusiasts labor under the delusion that “it’s not human until it’s born”; the infantile rationalization that a “fetus” delivered two weeks early at 38 weeks is human, while another one that’s gestated for 38 weeks that hasn’t yet been delivered isn’t human at all.

But apparently the spare parts they strip out of the ripped-apart corpses are human enough to use on other humans.

So, logically, the pre-natal child isn’t human, but their parts are?

They Warned Us…

…that if we voted Republican in 2014, greedy bloodthirsty soulless profiteers would enrich themselves and their organizations by selling children’s body parts.

And they were…

…well, no.  There’s nothing ironically funny, here.  Planned Parenthood is, in fact, harvesting body parts from pre-natal children killed in late-term abortions, and selling them for, er, non-profit:

This is a bombshell – but I’m under no illusions that Big Left, and their minions in Big Media, will allow this story to get to a wider audience (and when they do, they’ll blame Republicans, somehow).

Planned Parenthood responds:

Planned Parenthood, which in addition to abortions provides healthcare and information regarding birth control and other reproductive issues, explained in its statement, “Patients sometimes want to donate tissue to scientific research that can help lead to medical breakthroughs, such as treatments and cures for serious diseases.

“At several of our health centers, we help patients who want to donate tissue for scientific research, and we do this just like every other high-quality health care provider does — with full, appropriate consent from patients and under the highest ethical and legal standards.

“There is no financial benefit for tissue donation for either the patient or for Planned Parenthood.”

Let’s forget for a moment that we’re talking about “tissue” from pre-natal children aborted at around 24 weeks’ gestation – inside the envelope where 25% of children, if delivered alive, can survive and live normal lives.

If there’s “no financial benefit”, then why aren’t the “tissues” donated?   What’s with the price list that Doctor Spumoni rattles off?

We’re supposed to think that Planned Parenthood’s activities, and “after-market parts” service, is intended to save lives.

We can do that; we can also acknowledge that some of the Nazi’s medical “research” at concentration and extermination camps was intended to save lives, too.

Of course, if you are a functioning human being, you can not “forget for a moment that we’re talking about tissue from pre-natal children aborted at 24 weeks”.


Earlier this week, while listening to Jack and Andrew on the lesser talk station, I caught them running through this piece about 38 examples of liberal privelege on college campuses. 

The piece is very much worth a read.

Of course, if you live in a place like the Twin Cities, you realize there’d be room for a similar piece for adults in places where Jon Stewart is considered news and where chanting “settled science!” is considered an argument-ender.

I’m going to take quick shot at it, off the top of my head:  if you’re an adult in a “progressive” city…:

  1. You’ve never had to learn to confront dissent as anything other than either a mortal threat to your worldview, or a joke to be scuttled away from, using ad homina if necessary.
  2. You’ve never had to learn to debate at a level beyond strawmen, red herrings, and chuckling “facts have a liberal bias” as if the saying were handed down by the ancients, rather than by a mediocre comic who made a living satirizing conservatives.
  3. After 12 years of indoctrination in the public schools, and often as not 4-8 years at an institution where dissent is treated as a pathology, you are utterly secure in your faith that your club is the sole source of truth.

35 more to go!

The More Things Change

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

If a deacon were to announce a rally entitled “God Hates Fags” to begin on the church lawn and stroll the sidewalks to City Hall, but the local NAMBLA chapter obtained a court order restraining her from holding the rally or from making future comments unflattering to gays on the grounds that the Bible is hate speech, which side would the present Supreme Court favor: freedom of speech and religion? Or gay rights? 
Are you sure about that?
Illinois Nazis marching through Jewish neighborhoods was protected in 1977 and cross-burning was protected in 1992. But back in those ignorant, bigoted times, homosexuality was still a mental illness and gay sex was a criminal act. Today . . . ?
Joe Doakes

The definitions of criminality and insanity are both tools of the state.

I, Revolutionary

What culture made a curse of the saying “May you live in interesting times?”  Hindi?  Confucianist?  Aztec?  Irish?  Yiddish?

Who knows?  It merely seems that that’s what we’re doing.

We live in a society that’s led by a political and media elite that seems no less dim and self-referential than Emperor Nero; a society where the schools and universities are working for the bad guys, where the President is outwardly more concerned about Tea Partiers than ISIS or an Iranian bomb, where five appointed Ivy Leaguers dictate to 535 elected representatives, where the rights of the law-abiding mainstream seem to be worth less than the wishes and desires and agendas of a motivated minority.

But to David French in the NRO, today is a great time to be alive and conservative.  Because there’s no shortage of purpose facing a good conservative today:

It’s common for our fellow citizens to sometimes feel aimless, to lack purpose for their lives. Yet no American patriot should lack purpose today. In an era when our kids are seen as the vanguard of the Left’s social revolution, it’s a patriotic act to raise children to understand and respect the Constitution, to comprehend the great truths of American history, and to acquire the psychological toughness that will help them endure the stigma and scorn of the Left.

In an era when the Left seeks to drive social conservatives not just from the campus and pop culture (where we cling by our fingernails) but also from the marketplace and — finally — from our own churches, the simple act of openly and fearlessly living out your faith and values is a patriotic act.

In an era when too many liberals seek to appropriate charity — care and concern for the “least of these” — for the state, it’s a patriotic and deeply loving act to reach out and lift up friends and neighbors in need. While there are well-meaning bureaucrats in the vast welfare-industrial complex, there is no substitute for the unique, individual impact of Americans in relationship with one another, mentoring and supporting those who need help the most. And it remains a deeply patriotic and meaningful act to enlist in the military, to train to defeat enemies abroad — even if this president is unwilling to effectively confront our foes. Reality has a way of ultimately dictating foreign policy, and we need men and women who are prepared for the days ahead. Even as we see the significance of patriotism in the way in which we live our everyday lives, we need to abandon the idea that there’s a cultural or political shortcut — that the right combination of events or the right politician will turn the tide. Cultures change as a result of the persistent effort of millions, not because of the glorious leadership of one individual — not even Barack Obama, The One.

The examples of what the Army of Davids can do are all around us, if you care to look.

The Big Lie, Chapter MCDLXXVI

I’m not sure that this is quite a Berg’s Seventh Law reference – but as a general rule, when the far left says the far right is getting more violent, they’re lying.  

Indeed, it’s almost becoming a corollary to Berg’s Seventh – all lefty claims of “right wing violence” should be presumed false until proven true beyond a reasonable doubt.