The Divine Right Of Ward Heelers

I’m picturing DFL Representative John Lesch – he of the Capone suits and the junior-high demeanor – apparently believes that “legislative privilege” immunizes one from being a ghastly little entitled jagoff.

The Minnesota Court of Appeals, to my boundless amazement, disagrees:

State Rep. John Lesch is not protected by “legislative immunity” in a defamation case brought against him by St. Paul city attorney Lyndsey Olson, the Minnesota Court of Appeals ruled Monday.
The decision allows Olson’s case to proceed.
Olson sued Lesch last year after he sent a letter to incoming St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter criticizing her work history and judgment, saying she has a “track record of integrity questions and management problems.”

If you’re a commoner and you make statement of fact about someone that are false, that can damage their reputation and living, and are done with malicious disregard for fact, it’s actionable.

Lesch apparnetly believes that being an elected DFLer in a one-party city confers divine right.

To be fair, there’s not much about any urban DFLers experience that would teach ’em otherwise, under normal circumstances.

So maybe, just maybe, Lesch’s arrogance and stupidity went outside the norm?

Lesch, a Democrat who represents part of St. Paul, has sought to dismiss the suit, arguing in part that he has legislative immunity. He will file a petition in the next month with the Minnesota Supreme Court, his attorney Marshall Tanick said.
“The Appellate Court construed the legislative immunity of legislators extremely narrowly, and we think that it’s more proper to take a broader view of what legislators do,” Tanick said.
He said he hopes the Supreme Court decides to take up the case to provide “clarification and guidance” on legislative immunity.


If the SCOM rules that “legislative immunity” protects any (DFL) pol’s statement, anywhere, for any reason, no matter what the context, then it is time for someone to take a can of Raid to the whole enterprise.

The Strib Is Ilhan Omar’s PR Flack

This hit twitter yesterday; Ilhan Omar’s spin doctor, Ben Goldfarb, caught in the emailed act of trying to fix media and pundit coverage of the perennially-scabrous Ilhan Omar:

Someone should probably reach out to talk off the record and shut it down with him as we do with the Strib“.

Not that this is a mystery to anyone, but it’s still a little jarring to see it in black and white from one of the co-conspirators.

The downside, of course – if the DFL does in fact primary Omar, and manages to replace her (doubtful), they’ll only come up with someone worse.

“Intelligence”

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

American intelligence agencies confidently assured us that Saddam Hussein was acquiring weapons of mass destruction to attack the United States. That was false.  A Republican Presidency was hobbled by claims that “Bush lied, people died.”
American intelligence agencies confidently assured us that Candidate Trump was working with Russia to steal the election from Hillary.  That was false.  A Republican Presidency has been hobbled by an investigation into collusion.
These are not trivial errors.  Either American intelligence agencies are so incompetent we shouldn’t believe a word they say; or they’re so thoroughly politicized we shouldn’t believe a word they say.  Both possibilities should be deeply troubling to every American.  We need a deep, searching, thorough investigation to determine which one it is.
Joe Doakes

It’s not just intelligence, either. How can you have a self-governing society when you don’t trust the institutions that enforce the laws, adjudicate disputes, or – in the case of the media – ostensibly hold government accountable?

You really can’t.

And I think that’s intentional.

The Fix – State Of Minnesota Edition

The twitter account of the “non-partisan” State Board of Public Defense retweeted Senator Latz’s twitter-heckling of the Senate’s Public Safety omnibus bill yesterday:

By the way – did you know Sen. Latz went to Harvard? Just ask him. He’ll tell you.

Makes me wonder what caliber of defense a PD would give a defendant with a “Reagan/Bush 1984” t-shirt in their booking photo…

Only In A Red State

Frothy lefty bureaucrat suspended for trying to “shame” a gun owner/activist.

If this were in a Blue state, you’d expect that to be, perhaps, the beginning of a piece of quixotic litigation by wronged conservatives.

But it’s a Red state. Justice actually happened:

The executive director of the Alaska human rights [what else? – Ed] commission has been suspended for 15 working days without pay for complaining on social media about a “Black Rifles Matter” sticker she believed to be racist on a vehicle in the commission’s Anchorage parking lot.
Commission members voted 5-2 Friday to suspend Marti Buscaglia, effective Monday.

It’s worth noting that one of the dissenters thought the punishment was too lenient.

One thing you have to get down to paragraph five to find out – Buscaglia used her departments’ Facebook page for her “shaming”.

Buscaglia, a former newspaper publisher in Alaska and Minnesota, declined comment in an email to The Associated Press.
Last month, Buscaglia saw the sticker on Linegar’s vehicle and posted a photo of it on the commission’s Facebook page asking, “In what world is this OK?”
Linegar, who has a plumbing and heating business, has said the truck was his and that his company was doing repairs at the building that day. He has said that he understood the stickers to be about gun safety and “Second Amendment awareness.”
In his statement to the AP, Linegar said Buscaglia should never have made those comments on social media. “If she wanted to simply have a conversation with me, then a note to that effect could have been left on my windshield. Instead, she saw fit to write a different type of note, put my truck on Facebook on the State page …,” he said.

Of course, this is in a hard red state.

In Connecticut, California, or some parts of Minnesota, Linegar would have a SWAT team – figurative or literal – breaking down his door, figuratively or literally.

The Nice Thing About Being A Democrat…

…is that you can be a corrosive, giggly bigot, and nobody will ever, ever call you on it.

I add the emphasis:

MSNBC anchor Stephanie Ruhle implied without evidence Tuesday that Sen. Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.) has something to hide and the president is blackmailing him over it.
Graham has become one of the President Donald Trump’s staunchest allies in the Senate, although he has criticized him for some key decisions, such as the military pullout from Syria. Ruhle seemed to imply there’s more to their relationship than politics, however, during a discussion about Graham with former Rep. David Jolly and professor Eddie Glaude.
“Before Don got elected, Lindsey Graham called Donald Trump a racist, xenophobic bigot. Those are Lindsey Graham’s words,” Jolly said. “I doubt Lindsey Graham could tell you Donald Trump has had a change of heart in the last 24 months, I bet the change of heart has been with Lindsey Graham, not the president.”
“Or it could be that Donald Trump or somebody knows something pretty extreme about Lindsey Graham,” Ruhle replied. “We’re gonna have to leave it there.”
The smirk Ruhle produced when she spoke suggests she was referring to rumors about Graham’s sexuality, which some Democrats have been trumpeting anew recently. Jon Cooper, chairman of the Democratic Coalition super PAC, explicitly accused Graham on Saturday of letting himself be blackmailed for “some pretty serious kink.”

Did I say “Nice thing?”

I meant “horrible, Orwellian, evil” thing.

An Inconvenient Truth

The welfare state – in the US, the state that was put in place by Lyndon B Johnson’s “Great Society” – isn’t so much about “solving poverty” as it is about “making poverty a permanently sustainable state that can be exploited for political gain”.

We can argue the specifics, and maybe even the conclusion.

But let’s say that was not the case; if the Democrats weren’t trying to build a permanent underclass beholden to them with the welfare state, how would you better design such a thing as one would with the Great Society?

Because that’s how it worked.   Poverty in the US was in free fall until the nation “declared war” on it.:

 

Bombs

Over the past two years, there’s been an epidemic of violence perpetrated by people on the left against Republicans, conservatives, Trump supporters, and anyone else the left considers untermensch.  

Some liberals, to be fair, decry the violence – but not only do you have many high-profile liberals calling for it, and calling for more, but many more quibble that it actually happens, or that it’s really as bad as the victims say it is.

But now we come to hear that both prog plutocrat financier George Soros, Barack Obama and the Clintons have received some form of explosive device or another.

Right before the election.

Simply amazing, isn’t it?

If someone on the right is behind this, then they need to be arrested and prosecuted until their ears bleed.

But it does seem waaaaaaaaaaaaay too convenient, doesn’t it?

The Racket Strikes Back

A friend of the blog writes:

It used to be people would go out for a night of fun and one person would have to be the designated driver. A majority didn’t even think to use cabs and public transit would often not run regularly enough at bar close.

Now that we have Uber and Lyft, I have heard many, many stories of people using those services when going out. I know some people who no longer drive under the influence because of the affordability of Uber.

So, of course, when people get real options that are reliable and affordable, those in the government who think their jobs are as social engineers have a problem.

Of interest locally, I found this link through a Tweet that declared Minneapolis/St Paul should consider this next. Why?

They can try to limit all they want, but there will still be people in cars and ride sharing will still happen. For example, the other day, I was approached by a man on the street who was trying to start his own ride share business, offering lower rates than Uber by about $2. I also have the number of a taxi driver who moonlights as a personal driver for those of us with his business card. He pretty much places himself on call for us.

So, yes, there will be options, which makes it even more aggravating that city governments get involved in private business that actually works for the people.

In a system built on rent-seeking, people will seek rent.

And for the government permission racket to survive, it’s gotta deliver the rent.

Orwell Was A Pollyanna

Ben Shapiro challenged prog flavor of the month Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez to a debate – something she’s never had in her “political career”.

Now, there’s no requirement that a pol debate anyone, ever – even their opponents for office, much less pundits.   Of course, it can be used against you – not that it matters in a one-party town like Ocasio-Cortez’ district.

And there are so many ways to decline a debate request like this:

  • “Sorry – I’m getting ready for a general election (coronation?), and I’m too busy”.
  • “Debating you will be of no consequence to serving (koff koff) my constituents and my district.  Why would either of us waste our time?”
  • “I’ve got drapes to measure that evening”
  • “I gotta wash my hair”.
  • Or the old reliable “<silence>”.

That’s not what Ocasio-Cortez did, though:

Asking for a debate is “like catcalling” – sexist, intrusive, unwanted, arrogant.

A response that is, itself, sexist and arrogant, and a sign of a mind that can think on no other plane than the politics of identity and outrage.

Congratuations, New York.  You got another winner here.  (Not that Minnesota has anything to brag about, since the equally risible Alondra Cano  Alondra Cano, Ray Dehn and Keith Ellison remain in office).

SIDE NOTE:   Remember when the same people who are raving about Ocasio-Cortez today were calling Sarah Palin  an ignorant dumbass?

This is the sound of “the bar” in freefall.

Do You Remember

Remember when the media was crawling over every square foot of wind-ravaged Puerto Rican soil looking for examples of Trump administration incompetence and corruption, making a hero out of San Juan’s idiot Democrat mayor in the process, if only briefly?

Where is the media now?

A mayor and two former government officials in Puerto Rico face public corruption charges in separate cases that involve a total of $8 million in federal and local funds, authorities said Thursday. The suspects are the mayor of the southwest town of Sabana Grande and the former directors of finance for the northern town of Toa Baja, which has struggled to pay its employees amid an 11-year recession.

U.S. Attorney Rosa Emilia Rodriguez told reporters that the former officials from Toa Baja are accused of using nearly $5 million worth of federal funds to pay the town’s public employees and municipal contractors.

“Not only is that illegal, it’s immoral,” she said.

Puerto Rico – aka “A Warm Minneapolis” – would be considered a “Failed State” if it weren’t a US territory.

But unless the “news” can “denormalize” Trump, they really don’t care.

This Is Today’s DFL

Ilhan Omar – DFL endorsed candidate for Congress in the 5th CD – is a raving anti-semite.

State representative Ilhan Omar has yet to complete her first term in the Minnesota legislature, where she has accomplished approximately nothing of substance, though she has now secured the DFL endorsement to succeed Minnesota Fifth District Rep. Keith Ellison in Congress. In the brief Weekly Standard article “The anti-Israel seat,” I conclude with observations related to Omar’s frank hatred of Israel. She doesn’t sugarcoat it. She calls Israel an “apartheid regime.”

That is a defamatory falsehood with a shabby provenance. In Omar’s case, it is something more than an impulsive comment in a recent tweet. It represents her considered judgment. One can see it at work in her remarks on the floor of the Minnesota House in opposition to a bill (HF 400) opposing the boycott of Israel promoted by so-called BDS groups harking back to the “Zionism is racism” lie of the 1970’s.

And it’s fascinating how local media treats Omar’s anti-semitiem; exactly the same way as they treated her dubious family history.

It makes sense; their editors and producers know they’ll never get another invite to the Oceannarie if they do.

More, Faster!

The Southern Poverty Law Center loses a $3 million defamation suit:

The Southern Poverty Law Center, which monitors hate groups, has apologized for including the Quilliam Foundation, a counter-extremism group, and its founder, Maajid Nawaz, in its Field Guide to Anti-Muslim Extremists. “Mr. Nawaz and Quilliam have made valuable and important contributions to public discourse, including by promoting pluralism and condemning both anti-Muslim bigotry and Islamist extremism,” the SPLC wrote in a statement. The SPLC will also pay a $3.375 million settlement to Quilliam that will be used to fight “anti-Muslim bigotry and Islamist extremism,” according to a Quilliam press release.

But…what made the SPLC refer to them as a “hate group?”

“We were able to fight back against the Regressive Left and show them that moderate Muslims will not be silenced,” Nawaz said in the release.

Aaaah.  It all makes sense now.

Peasants: Your Overlords Grant You Clemency!

StPaul residence now have until Friday to pick a trash cart…

… to replace the perfectly good trash buckets they had from the perfectly good trash haulers that, in many cases, they’ve been happily using for years. (Like my own trash hauler of this past decade, Highland Sanitation; if you live in their service area, they come highly recommended).

And if you are a low income or fixed income person who has been extemporizing by sharing a bucket contract with another neighbor?

Shush, present, and be happy to pay for your bureaucrats pensions!:

“Each unit does need to have its own cart and service,” \said Lisa Hiebert, a spokeswoman for St. Paul Public Works. “If they’re in a multi-unit building, or they’re sharing, there is no opt-out option

Of course it’s not an option. This is serious business.

And by serious business, I mean “this is a featherbedded contract to generate more city employees, meaning more public sector union dues, meaning more contributions to the Saint Paul DFL.

So with those stakes in mind, you will get exactly the options you are given, peasants!

Berg’s Seventh Law: On The Cusp Of Immortality?

I was thinking the other day – if it turns out that, after almost two years of Democrats claiming that Donald Trump colluded with the Russians it turns out that the Democrats were the ones who actually colluded with Putin?

It’d mean that Berg’s Seventh Law is not only an inviolable law of human political behavior, but in fact one of the core truths about the American political system today.

The Rightful Owners

Former Iron Range legislator Carly Melin (who has since gone on to the great non-profit sinecure reward that awaits all DFL legislators) on the protests at the Blue Line on Fort Snelling yesterday:

Er, Ms. Melin? Why shouldn’t we be mad? We paid for it.

God knows you didn’t.

Any Bets On How Long It’ll Take For The Met Council To Do This?

Uber and Lyft are cutting into the DC Metro subway system’s ridership; it’s cheaper than cabs and more convenient than the train, with the added advantage of not having to share a moving jail cell with transit customers.

And in Democrat America, there is no greater sin than beating government:

The plan would increase D.C.’s tax on ride-hailing services from 1 percent to 4.75 percent. Nearly quintupling the city’s tax on ride-hailing services will have the obvious effect of driving prices up for customers, punishing them for choosing a product more to their liking.

Yet that’s how D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) and WMATA Board Chairman and D.C. Council member Jack Evans (D-Ward 2) proposed to raise a portion of D.C.’s “share” — $178.5 million — of the $500 million in new subsidies Metro craves. The council and mayor already approved their annual $178.5 million contribution for Metro, but the taxes that will ultimately serve as its source must be authorized through the District’s budget process.It is no wonder that Metro would want to hammer the competition with tax hikes. Ride-hailing services have contributed to Metro’s drastic decline in ridership, albeit in a relatively small way. And customers increasingly turn to the apps when Metro leaves them stranded. In some cases, Metro service disruptions have increased demand for ride-hailing services by as much as 25 percent.

But the tax adds insult to injury: It makes taxpayers prop up a service they do not want while making it more expensive for them to use preferred alternatives. The logic is clear: If it moves better than Metro, tax it.

Prediction:  if bicycles start taking people off transit, you’ll see a tax on bikes and cement pylons on all the bike lanes.

Resilience

When I hear city governments talking about hiring “resilience directors” – like Minneapolis and Saint Paul – the job usually involves…

…well, let’s let the City of Minneapolis explain it:

…expanding access to affordable housing, and the impact that would have on our other goals, including building an inclusive economy and strengthening police-community relations,

In other words, it’s a non-profit executive being paid for directly by the taxpayer.

Of course, when I originally heard the term “resiliency officer”, I thought they meant something like this – actually working to make their cities more, y’know, resilient:

In the wake of Harvey, Houston has become a prominent test case for resilient rebuilding. Last month, the Houston City Council approved regulations requiring new buildings in the 100- and 500-year floodplains be built 2 feet above ground level or above the projected water level of a 500-year flood. The city previously mandated a 1-foot height for homeowners in the 100-year floodplain, and a report earlier this year found that 84 percent of Harvey-damaged homes in the area’s floodplains could have been spared with the higher height standard.

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, who originally proposed the new height rule, also is seeking funding to build a third reservoir for the city, though such a project would take years to complete.This year’s hurricane season, which begins June 1, is forecast to be “slightly above average.”

Leave it to the DFL to pervert the term “Resilience” beyond all recognition.

 

Another Reason I’d Be Buying Hornady…

…if all my guns hadn’t fallen into Mille Lacs;  after a New York state comptroller sent aletter urging banks to treat gun-related transactions the same way they handle potential money-laundering and human-trafficking funding, Hornady responded:

Today, the State of New York did one of the most despicable acts ever perpetrated by any state by asking New York banks, financial institutions and insurance companies to stop doing business with the gun and ammo industry.

While it may not make a difference to New York, Hornady will not knowingly allow our ammunition to be sold to the State of NY or any NY agencies. Their actions are a blatant and disgusting abuse of office and we won’t be associated with a government that acts like that. They should be ashamed.

It’s coming high time for Real America to cut the orcs off in every possible way available.

Not A Peep Of Resistance

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

“ . . . new employees are seen as crucial to ensure ample funding for the wave of retiring baby boomers . . . .”

This is the exact definition of Ponzi Scheme but the Post doesn’t seem to notice that the union’s position is absurd and in any other context, illegal.

Read the whole thing.

This is what people with half a brain are up against: people with less than half a brain.

I Wonder If Lori Sturdevant Has Read This?

Republicans just don’t want to work across the aisle. 

This, the Democrats say about a party that’s nominated John McCain, Mitt Romney, Dubya, Tim Pawlenty, Mike McFadden…

…well, you know the list.

But on the far left, chucking even Big Left’s current unconvincing veneer of “bipartisanship” is becoming outré:

In this current period of American politics, at this juncture in our history, there’s no way that a bipartisan path provides the way forward. The way forward is on the path California blazed about 15 years ago.

In the early 2000s, California faced a similar situation to the one America faces today. Its state politics were severely polarized, and state government was largely paralyzed. The Republican Party was trapped in the brain-dead orthodoxies of an ideology stuck in the past. The party was controlled by zealous activists and corrupt special interests who refused to face up to the reality of the new century. It was a party that refused to work with the Democrats in good faith or compromise in any way.

To which their response is – let’s not compromise in any way ourselves!

The solution for the people of California was to reconfigure the political landscape and shift a supermajority of citizens — and by extension their elected officials — under the Democratic Party’s big tent. The natural continuum of more progressive to more moderate solutions then got worked out within the context of the only remaining functioning party…California today provides a model for America as a whole. This model of politics and government is by no means perfect, but it is far ahead of the nation in coming to terms with the inexorable digital, global, sustainable transformation of our era.

You could say Cali provides a model for the rest of the country…

…but not in the way the authors (alt-media, TED talk and public broadcasting darlings Ruy Texeira and Peter Leyden) think.

Wonder if Lori Sturdevant is going to give Leyden and Texeira a stern talking-to?

UPDATE:  Not sure if Sturdevant’s read it, but Kurt Schlichter has.

California is a bankrupt failed state that is essentially Illinois with palm trees and better weather. Outside the coastal urban enclaves where Jack and his pals mingle, drinking kombucha and apologizing for their white privilege to their baffled servants, it’s a crowded, decaying disaster. Bums wander the streets, littering the sidewalks with human waste. Crime is rising. Illegal aliens abound, more welcome in the Golden State than actual Americans. California is an example all right, but a cautionary one.

Read both of ’em.  The Second Civil War is underway.  Not a shot has been fired (well, not many of them anyway) – call it the Civil Cold War if you’d like.