There Are Millions Of Reasons…

… why I will never donate a single penny to Minnesota Public radio, even though I listen to them (primarily news and classical music) constantly.

Two of them, for starters, are:

  • Keri Miller
  • WNYC’s “On The Media”.

But a few more million of them are right here; as Minnesota Public radio lays off much of what used to be a pretty good news room, their executive staff still keep getting paid, well, like this:

To add insult to injury, MPR’s national production group, “American Public Media”, is canceling “Live from Here with Chris Thile” – the excellent show that grew from the ruins of “Prairie Home Companion”, and one of the few original production non-news shows worth listening to.

MPR hastens to point out that their C-suite is taking a 30% pay cut. Which sounds like a big deal, until you realize that a whole lot of private sector CEOs are cutting their pay to $1 for the duration.

Steam

“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others”
— “Animal Farm”, George Orwell

So let me get this straight:

Lt. Governor Flanagan, who chairs the Capitol Architecture Committee, who is a “progressive” (koff koff) who has made her displeasure with the Capitol mall’s statue of Christopher Columbus amply known in the past, and whose entire place in the Walz administration is to placate the MN DFL’s ever more extreme left wing (who rejected Walz for endorsement at the 2018 convention, and certainly could do it again in 2022 if he doesn’t kiss up to the Left sincerely and often enough), may well have been involved in interfering with the response by the State Patrol who, despite six hours’ warning (according to Channel 5’s Tom Hauser) got the the Capitol juuuust too late to do anything about the illegal destruction of state property, which amounted to a de facto nudge and wink by the Walz Administration to people (who were, we’re told, “Frustrated” by their inability to get the statue removed, even though there was no record of any petition to remove the statue on record)…

…who were, in the most supreme of ironies, protesting government “overreach and unaccountability” in the Floyd case?

You don’t have to be a genius to see that there really are two Minnesotas, when it comes to the law; those who are in the favor of those in power, and those who aren’t. The state government deploys its full weight and might to go after bars in rural areas with no Covid problem, but allows Lake Street and University Avenue to burn (mostly at the hands of the sort of white leftists whom the administration can’t afford to offend or, really, discomfort in any way); some groups, favored by the DFL establishment, can block freeways with impunity while others, not so favored, get penned into ‘free speech zones’ at best.

This is “progressive” government.

*Totally* unrelated, honest – you need to watch this classic animated version of “Animal Farm” before the cancel culture gets it removed and disappeared:

Ready For An Apology

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

The Washington Post, which endlessly editorializes in favor of stricter gun control laws and bans, writes approvingly of armed citizens carrying assault rifles, shotguns and pistols in the streets of Minneapolis. 

NAACP, which advocates strict gun control laws and bans, is organizing the armed citizen patrols.

Neither of these organizations come right out and say it, but by their actions, they’re basically conceding that I was right all along, and they were wrong. 

I am now prepared to accept their apologies.

Joe Doakes

The good news: we might be starting to see parts of the left (including, unfortunately, some of the worst parts) voting on this issue with their feet.

The bad news: all that energy is going to go into more bad ideas.

These Are Our “Elites”

NPR’s Mara Liasson, over the weekend, observing the anniversary of D-Day. Or, more accurately, “observing” the anniversary of “D-Day”, really.

When talking with progs about “Anti”-Fa – a group whose origins were as the Communist version of the Nazi “Brownshirts”, and nothing else – I’ve found “progs” (and “elite” media types like Liasson fall out into two camps:

  • They judge the book by its cover and nothing more; “Antifa is anti-fascist! That’s a good thing!”. Comprehending this level of see/hear/speak-no-evil ignorance is like looking at a tornado for the first time; you’ve heard about ’em, you’re read about ’em, but they’re incomprehensible when you see ’em in person.
  • They think the idea of Big Left having an army of thugs is a necessary evil – or a necessary good, depending on the relative level of depravity.

I’m going to guess Liasson, cocooned in the DC area, is the former.

The DFL bobbleheads who run the Twin Cities? Much more mixed.

Democracy Dies In Conspiracy

Conservatives, especially conservatives who are “out” critics of the mainstream media, get routinely accused of “hating” journalism. The late Nick Coleman was particularly, er, “acerbic” in his criticism of those who had the gall to criticize the news/industrial complex, claiming in one bout of hysteria that bloggers “wanted to kill the Strib”.

While we correctly savaged the Strib, and especially Coleman, on issue after issue, it was still baked wind. Self-government, small-“D” democracy, needs a functional, and above all trustworthy, media (among many other institutions) to survive.

And by “”trustworthy”, we mean “can be trusted to report the news, truthfully, regardless of its own institutional and individual political opinions.

In Europe, the media are pretty honest about their political points of view, on an editorial level; the Times of London and the Frankfurter Allgemeine are center-right; Guardian and Die Zeit and Le Monde are all various degrees of left. You know the slant before you pick up the paper. You can account for it.

American media has built a myth of objectivity, or at least of being a so-called “neutral voice”, around itself; Minnesota Public Radio news even made “No Rant, No Slant” their motto for a while, and it’s not much different than the mythology American media built for itself over the past hundred years or so. In my freshman year journalism class,

And it’s never really been true. Some journos do in fact do their best to separate their personal views, of course – I’ve got nothing but respect for the best of them.

Many journalists also do their best, but inevitably reflect the fact that their entire frame of reference is left-of-center. Their education, their workplace, their social circle, are an ecosystem where some variety of The Left is the old, current and future Normal. When they confront a different point of view, they can seem a little like Jane Goodall venturing out among the gorillas.

And when things are chugging along like normal, who cares, right?

The New Abnormal . But then something pops up that threatens the order, and not in a good way. What then?

The media has been rightly seen as slanted to the left for close to fifty years. With the rise of talk radio and alternative news 30 years ago, you could sense that the “elite” media were starting to give up on the pretense of balance and detachment. The notion of the “neutral voice” has been

But with the election of President Trump, the floodgates got dynamited.

The “neutral voice”, isn’t.

“Oh, Mitch – you and your hyperbole”.

No. Not at all.

The Gatekeepers Speak: “On the Media” is a production of WNYC Radio in New York. It’s a public station, one of the flagship station in the National Public Radio chain. Like a lot of NPR productions, sometimes it’s excellent. Sometimes the smug rolls off it like fog off a loch.

And sometimes, it accomplishes its mission – which in the case of “On the Media”, is to serve as the exposed id of the “elite” media in this country.

With that in mind: this show was broadcast on December 1, 2016 – probably as fast as could be put together on NPR timelines. It had four segments:

  1. The first gazed navel-ly about “how the media should cover President Trump“. Because conveying the facts and letting the audience make up their own mind was presumably not good enough anymore.
  2. How talking about Trump “Normalizes” him – unless the media changes the rules when discussing him. This featured reprentatives, not from The Nation and Slate.com or Buzzfeed or Samantha Bee. No, they were from the NYTimes and Washington Post. That led to another segment…
  3. How the language itself needs to be understood, and harnessed.
  4. And, lest the foregoing was too oblique for the casual listener, a segment linking the (as yet unstarted) Trump administration to Putin’s variety of autocracy, and laying out the imperative for the media to use it’s power to prevent “Normalizing” the president-elect.

And the media’s behavior in the three and a half years since has mapped to that template, as the media has grasped at every possible straw to try to “take down” the President.

We didn’t even need to get this leaked to us, like ‘Journo-list’ – although I suspect I may have been the only conservative listening to that groaningly pompous program, and I suspect that’s WNYC’s assumption as well.

TL:dr – At least some of the people at the apex of the “layers and layers of gatekeepers” have abolished the old rules of journalism, publicly but yet internally, as re Donald Trump.

The “elite” media’s entire coverage of Trump over the past four years, on every issue, has followed the template that’s suggested, sub rosa, in the four On the Media pieces above.

Will the rules change back when Trump leaves office? Of course not – the media had the same general attitude toward Republicans, conservatives and the issues of the right for a generation before 2016.

But the institutional imperative to use the media’s power toward political and social ends? That’s not going to end.

Distrust, but verify. And then, almost inevitably, if some smidgeon of partisan politics is involved, distrust some more.

Young Jerks

If there’s a figure anywhere in the liberal media that makes the likes of the late Ed Schultz, or Chris Matthews, or most of the host of “the view””, seem intelligent, rational and human, it’s Cenk Uygur, impresario of the “Young Turks” – sort of a “MinnesotaReformer” for loud, entitled people.

They are, naturally, progressive to a geometric fault.

Including, it seem, in terms of rank hypocrisy. Uygur, It was a knee-jerk supporter of public sector unions and the national $15 an hour minimum wage for mere public sector employees…

… has a different point of view when it comes to his own organization:

Earlier that day, a Twitter handle claiming to represent TYT employees had announced on the social media platform their intention to form a union. In the staff meeting, the network’s co-founder and influential host, Cenk Uygur, urged employees not to do so, arguing that a union does not belong at a small, independent outlet like TYT, according to two workers who were present. He said if there had been a union at the network it would not have grown the way it has.

Huh. You don’t say?

His talk ― at times emotional, the staffers said, with Uygur throwing his papers to the ground at one point, and chastising an employee ― seemed to contradict the progressive, worker-first ethos that TYT broadcasts to its millions of lefty followers. Jack Gerard, who is acting as the company’s chief operating officer as Uygur runs for Congress in California, told the staff they were not discouraging unionization. 

But the message from Uygur was clear ― and, to at least some staffers, discouraging.

Not nearly as discouraging as…oh, I dunno, realizing your’re out of collect, paying of $200K in student debt, and still working for Cenk Uygur

But still discouraging. 

Hang Onto Your Plumbing

So let’s see if we follow the progression, here.

Years ago, Big Left, via Big Media, started telling us that:

  • Greenhouse gases were going to kill us
  • Using energy causes greenhouse gas
  • Compact fluorescent lights use less energy.

And as quick as 1-2-3, compact fluorescents became the law of the land (just in time for compact LEDs, which use less energy, provide better light, and are much cheaper, to come along).

In recent years, Big Media has been:

  • telling us that current industrial meat production contributes to greenhouse gases, ergo will kill us all.
  • trumpeting the virtues of eating insects and caterpillars.

Thus, you can count on someone in Big Left pushing policy that’d encourage, and eventually mandate, the eating of bugs for protein.

Of course, “urban sprawl” didn’t fall far behind:

  • It encouraged a car-based lifestyle!
  • Big Media promptly started pushing the virtues of transit-based, high-density life.

And cities run by Big Left are doing their merry best, as we speak, to abolish the single-family home, the private yard, and the car.

So – the progression is:

  • Big Media notes that something we commonly accept is going to kill us.
  • Big Left’s apparatchiks push to make a noxious, degrading, expensive alternative mandatory.

I couldn’t help but think of that pattern when read this.

Inorganic

Hard as this may be to believe, it appears Greta Thunberg = sixteen year old autistic Swedish child and professional climate scold – just may not be the mind behind her presence.

“All it took to exploit the bug was opening a target page and checking the edit history of a post. Facebook mistakenly displayed the account or accounts that made edits to each post, rather than just the edits themselves,” explained Wired… If you’re one of Greta’s 3 million fans, you might be disappointed to hear that she is likely not the author of all of her posts. According to screenshots shared online, posts that are supposed to be written by Greta may actually have been written by her father, Svante Thunberg, and/or Adarsh Prathap, a climate activist and delegate at the UN’s Climate Change organization—who reportedly founded the page in December 2018.

Five’ll get you ten David Hogg’s social media presence is farmed out, too.

Breeding A Nation Of Ninnies

This tweet from Time – kids, ask your parents…

…explains a lot about how Greta Thunberg became their “Person of the Year”.

Among many other things.

The Babylon Bee may actually be giving the big media too much credit.

Focus

Education Minnesota has released its legislative priorities.

And it’s focused on students like a dog chasing a squirrel:

Minnesota’s teachers’ union Education Minnesota recently posted its 2020 resolutions, laying out its three priorities for the new year:

1. Get out 100% of the educator vote
2. Take back the state Senate
3. Win full funding for Minnesota students

OK, I lied. Their resolutions are all about browbeating teachers and holding the taxpayer completely hostage.

Could there be a more Orwellian sentence than “win full funding for MInnesota students?”

Chanting Points Memo: Let’s Make A List, 2020 Edition

I noted the other day that “progressives” seem to have only read-only memory; once they get a point in their heads, regardless of veracity or logic, it just stays there.

It has literally gotten to the point where the politicians and pundits of Big Left don’t even bother trying to convince people with any basis in fact or critical thinking skills; their entire message is repeating Big Lies often and loudly enough to convince the invincibly ignorant and browbeat the underinformed and insecure.

The mission today: add to the list. What are the lies, one line at a time, that Big Left gets the ignorant and the authoritarian to believe?

I’ll start below – but leave more in the comments.

  • “Trump’s election was illegitimate!”
  • “We’ve got more ‘gun violence’ now than ever before!”
  • “The ‘Republican War on Women’”
  • There are 57 genders
  • America is a racist nation
  • America is an antisemitic nation
  • America’s past is a uniquely terrible thing
  • Trump supported neo-Nazis at Charlottesville
  • Socialism lifts people from poverty; the free market does not
  • Obamacare benefitted more people than it harmed
  • Slavery in America was uniquely more terrible than slavery elsewhere
  • “Nixon won because all the racists came over to the GOP, and stayed”
  • “Nobody’s coming for your guns!”
  • Boys and girls are identical in every way.
  • “White privilege”, rather than class privilege, is a suffocating force in society. 
  • “We’ve got twelve years to solve manmade global warming!”
  • “Increasing public school funding directly benefits The Children!”
  • Racism is in America’s very cultural DNA
  • Religious faith is ignorance – it has nothing to do with meaning, merely a crutch for the intellectually vacant. 
  • Blacks are more likely to be shot by police than whites
  • Voter ID = “Voter Suppression”.
  • The Second Amendment was intended to defend slavery 
  • Rape culture dominates colleges – 1 in 5 women at colleges are raped or otherwise sexually assaulted
  • Women are paid 3/4 as much as men for the same work
  • “Children! In cages! It’s Trump’s fault!”
  • LIfe only begins when the baby emerges from the birth canal.  
  • “90% of the people want “universal” background checks on guns!”
  • “Abortion is about womens’ health!”
  • “Trump attacked women!”

UPDATE 12/18: Adding reader comments. 

  • Trump trying to appeal to black voters is voter suppression!
  • “There’s evidence that Trump has committed crimes!”
  • “Impeachment is a serious inquiry into Presidential abuse of power.”
  • “We must remove Trump to preserve Constitutional norms.”
  • The “Scandal free Obama administration.”
  • “Jimmy Carter was a good president.”
  • Social spending is “an investment”
  • Immigrants are a benefit to society (as a blanket statement)
  • Gay marriage is all about love.  Not politics. 
  • School choice hurts poor people
  • Trump had sex with “Stormy Daniels.”
  • Trump paid Daniels hush money, Daniels did not blackmail Trump
  • There is 97% scientific consensus on global warming
  • All of our problems can be solved by raising taxes on the wealthy
  • That’s not who we are!
  • We’re on the right side of history
  • “If ________ saves the life of just one child” then some usurpation, oppression or indignity is “worth it”. 

What else? 

Please respond in the comments.   

Responses that are not direct answers to the question – i.e. Democrat chanting points – will be removed. 

Fair Is Fair

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Liberals insist Citizens United was wrongly decided and must be overturned.  Really?  The Supreme Court made a mistake?  A mistaken decision must be overturned? 
Okay, I’m good with that.  But Citizens United concerns a narrow area of free speech as it applies to political campaigns. Let’s start with cases that have broader societal impact, because the errors those cases cause are much greater.  
Miranda v. Arizona
Roe v. Wade
Obergefell v. Hodges
Each of these stole the power of self-government from the states, where it rightfully belongs.  Let’s reverse all of them, then we can discuss why Hillary should be exempt from criticism. 
Joe Doakes

You notice, over time, how “logical consistency” isn’t much of a prioriity to Big Left.

Victims

This is the Associated Press, over the weekend:

In a sense, they have a point: I’ve been gleefully urging Democrats to push impeachment without rest almost since Trump was elected, seeing it as at best a goldmine for Trump, and at worst a gateway to a candidate I’d have actually supported on my own in 2016, Mike Pence, to the Oval Office.

But it’s almost like they want citizens to think that impeachment was part of some GOP/NRA/Heritage-Foundation/Military Industrial Complex plan to make the Democrats look like idiots.

And the worst thing is, Democrat voters will probably believe it.

And To Think Conservatives Believe Big Media Writes Stories About Conservative / Republican People And Events Long Beforehand, Because They’re All Writing To A Narrative

Jessica Kwong, progressive stenographer at former magazine “Newsweek”, on Donald Trump’s thanksgiving:

“it was written before knowing about the president’s surprise visit to Afghanistan-an honest mistake”

In other words, pre-written.

The Big Media aren’t “the enemy of the people”. They’re worse; after assuming the mantle of “guardian of democracy” (which, we are told, without their ministrations would “die in darkness”), they are doing something very, very different. They’re worse than an enemy; they are betraying a trust – however misbegotten.

They are swindling the people.

UPDATE: And apparently the once-mighty Newsweek can be shamed into decency; Kwong has been fired.

I’m sure she’ll be off the beach soon.

Some Pathological Liars Are More Equal Than Others

Famous not-actual-Native American Elizabeth Warren, who was not fired from a job for being pregnant, didn’t actually send her kid to public school.

But it took other people, in every case, to make that info public.

The school thing? Oh, yeah:

Sarah Carpenter, a pro-school choice activist who organized a protest of Warren’s Thursday speech in Atlanta, told Warren that she had read news reports indicating the candidate had sent her kids to private school. Though Warren once favored school choice and was an advocate for charter schools, she changed her views while seeking the Democratic presidential nomination.
“We are going to have the same choice that you had for your kids because I read that your children went to private schools,” Carpenter told Warren when the two met, according to video posted to social media, which was first identified by Corey DeAngelis, director of school choice at Reason Foundation.
Warren denied the claim, telling Carpenter, “My children went to public schools.”
A school yearbook obtained by the Washington Free Beacon indicates, however, that Warren’s son, Alex Warren, attended the Kirby Hall School for at least the 1986-1987 school year, Warren’s final year as a professor at the University of Texas at Austin. The college preparatory school is known for its “academically advanced curriculum” and offers small class sizes for students in grades K-12. The yearbook indicates that Alex Warren attended as a fifth grader.

Running as she is for the nomination by party for which an outsized share of delegates work for the Teachers Unions, it makes good sense to throw black families under the bus (and promising “historic investments” is exactly that).

Except within the Democrat party.

Re-Education Needed

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Target claims it is a corporate leader for social responsibility, even going so far as to have transgender bathrooms, but they pay their workers a pittance.

Evil selfish bastards. Fight for 15!

In 2010, Target found on the hard way that there is no “progressive enough” when dealing with the Big Left’s mob; that a decade and a half of prostrating themselves to the howling mob didn’t protect them when the howling mob needed a kick toy.

Will they need to be educated again?

#MeThree

This is from a few years ago – but the sentiment is growing, at least among our self-appointed idiot elite. It’s from Roxane Gay, a feminist professor who, for some reason, got a writeup in the NYTimes:

Men can start putting in some of the work women have long done in offering testimony. They can come forward and say “me too” while sharing how they have hurt women in ways great and small.

OK, here goes.

My Testimony: I have hurt women in one small – almost infinitesimal – way; I mock and taunt the likes of Roxane Gay for being the Robespierrian ninnies they truly are. I do the mocking and taunting because bellowing “you people are nothing but pseudointellectual brownshirts, peddling a form of groupthink that can only lead inexorably to totalitarianism” gets tiring.

I mock and taunt them because the world they want – where the “wrong” people are guilty until proven innocent, and innocence can never be proven because guilt is a matter of identity more than action – is worth fighting against. And fighting with mocking and taunting is better than doing it with guns and bombs and tanks, although I doubt the likes of Professor Gay’s followers know how or why.

This mocking and taunting no doubt infuriates Professor Gay – and I no doubt hurt her and her like among the weaker sex (“progressive” “feminist” “woke” “men” and their various female accomplices) in saying so. But much as they all may wish to bully me into acquiescence, I just won’t do it.

Which, no doubt, hurts them even more.

I’m sorry I’m not sorry.

Why Blue America Is Doomed

Math is racist. Achievement is supremacy.

Winston.

Seattle Public Schools adopt program that turns math into yet another grievance studies program:

In October, Seattle public schools unveiled a “framework” to inject “math ethnic studies” into all K-12 math classes, teaching “how math has been and continues to be used to oppress and marginalize people and communities of color.”
Students will be asked to “identify the inherent inequities of the standardized testing system used to oppress and marginalize people and communities of color” and “explain how math dictates economic oppression.”
“Why/how does data-driven processes prevent liberation?” it asks. “How important is it to be Right? What is Right? Says Who?”

It almost reads like the Babylon Bee – which is something I realize I’m saying a lot about the modern American left:

The curriculum was pushed by the school district’s ethnic studies program manager, Tracy Castro-Gill, who on Oct. 19 tweeted a picture with her “Marxist ringleader” and said the “next step is matching “INDOCTRINATED” t-shirts!”
“I am an educator of color in Seattle whose job is anti-racist work within the school district. Seattle is very white — nearly 70%. It’s also one of the most liberal cities in the US, and these liberal, white Seattleites hate being called racist, but the thing is – a lot of them are,” she wrote.
Though she was hired by the superintendent and the school board, Castro-Gill said criticisms of the math proposal from one board member’s Asian wife were racist. She also asked people to “help me push” the board and superintendent to oppose “rewhiting.”

I used to joke that pretty much every “radical atheist” was a Catholic or Evangelical with Daddy issues.

And yet again, the joke is reality:

Castro-Gill wrote on her blog that her mother is white and her father is Hispanic, but that she has a strained relationship.
“I’m fairly radical atheist and consider myself a far left anarchist who fights for racial justice,” she wrote. “My parents are both Trump supporting Republicans.”
She is also at odds with her child’s father after their child declared herself “nonbinary” after reading literature about transgenderism.

Fearless prediction – which I started writing as a joke, but as with all such things, Berg’s 21st Law is in effect here – Ms. Castro-Gill will be hired as a consultant by the Minneapolis, Saint Paul, Edina or Bloomington Public Schools in the near future.

Every Once In A While…

…a prog lets the truth slip out.

“Beto” O’Rourke, fake Latino beneficiary of a fake “Beto-mania” and former Presidential candidate – screwed up and told the truth behind Big Left’s approach to guns; they want them. All of them.

Eventually.

Beto slipped up and, in a fit of trying to re-attain relevance, let the end-game out.

Big mistake for him. And his fellow Progs know it:

During a discussion on ABC’s “the View,” the regular cohost weighed in on the former Texas Democratic Congressman’s recent exit from the 2020 presidential primary. Meghan McCain first mentioned O’Rourke’s position on gun buybacks, arguing that it may have played a role in his decline in popularity…
“He got a ton of Obama staff, and I’ll also say his stance on gun buybacks, Mayor Pete said it was ‘a shiny object that distracts from achievable gun reform,’” McCain continued. “Chris Coons said it wasn’t a wise policy move and ‘that clip will be played for years at 2nd Amendment rallies with organizations to try to scare people to say Democrats are coming for your guns.’ He made a speech about religious institutions get their tax status removed from them because they didn’t support same-sex marriage. He did a lot of, like, battleground culture war, and he ran as the most left, most ‘woke’ candidate and look where he ended up.”
“They should not tell everything they’re going to do,” Behar jumped in then, suggesting that candidates shouldn’t warn Americans the gun confiscation was coming. “If you are going to take people’s guns away, wait until you get elected and then take them away. Don’t tell them ahead of time.”
McCain pushed back, adding, “By the way, that’s what people like me think you’re going to do, so I appreciate his honesty.”

They’re all thinking it – the ones who are honest, anyway.

Never forget it.

Reliable Risible Sources

Anyone remember Dave Mindeman?

About ten years ago or so, he ran a blog – “MNPAct” – which was a website for putative organization Dave putatively ran.

Now, let me be clear: Dave was one of a small handful of “progressive” Metro-area bloggers from blogging’s heyday in the ’00s that didn’t and, to the best of my knowledge, still doesn’t belong under police surveillance; when my garage burned down, he didn’t feel compelled to disavow responsibility for it.

So there’s that. When you’re a conservative in the metro, you become thankful for the small things.

But that’s not to say Dave knows how to frame an argument any better than the rest of them ever did.

Example – last week, Dave felt the need to post this on Twitter:

Of course, Dave – confident as he seems to be in his side’s chanting points – didn’t know that Shannon Watts, like Nancy Nrd Bence (and Heather Martens before) has never, not once, said anything about guns, gun laws, gun owners, gun crime or gun statistics that’s simultaneously original, substantial and true; Lott’s “recent” testimony was 16 years ago.

I responded, natch – knowing, all along, I’d regret it, but such is the life of the contrarian.

It drew a “response” from Mindeman – one that was pretty clearly the fruits of a quick google for “John Lott Sucks” or some other “Dog Gone”-caliber thrashing about. Dave came up with…:

Mother Jones.

Now, if you are of a certain age, you might remember when MoJo was known for some capable journalism, even if it was always hard-left.

But the once-fabled counterculture investigative publication has fallen on risibly hard times; Babylon Bee doesn’t even bother parodying them anymore. What would be the point? (Interesting to see, by the way, that MoJo’s current “CEO” is City Pages hanger-on Monika Bauerlein).

Anyway.

The article – by “Writing Fellow” (read: glorified intern who’s hoping not to have to look for a job at Buzzfeed next) Gloria Exstrum, covers research Lott did on abortion and immigration, in addition to his usual gun research. I can’t comment on the abortion and immigration stuff – I cover my zone – but once it turns to the gun stuff, Exstrum’s article is proof that you never, ever use MoJo as a source on anything Second Amendment.

Exstrum writes:

Following the 2015 shooting at a Planned Parenthood in Colorado, President Barack Obama and former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid urged Congress to pass gun control legislation. “I say this every time we’ve got one of these mass shootings,” Obama said in a statement after the incident, “this just doesn’t happen in other countries.”
In a 2015 post on theCrime Prevention Research Center website, Lott’s group argues that “this claim is simply not true.”The analysis points out that, during the Obama administration, the United States ranks below several European countries in death rate per million people from mass public shootings. Predictably, conservative media outlets picked up the story, and Lott wrote a column for Fox News referencing his findings after the Las Vegas shooting.

So far so good. She got the basic assertions right – which is not something you can take for granted these days.

But here’s a challenge: try to figure out what the esteemed “writing fellow” is saying in response to Lott in this next bit. Honestly, I’m sort of at a loss, here:

However, as a Media Matters for America analysis points out, Lott’s claims only focus on public mass shootings involving machine guns, a criteria which excludes deadly incidents like the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre and the Pulse nightclub shooting.

For a “writing fellow”, Ms. Exstrum is either a terrible researcher, a lousy reporter (evidence toward this: using “Media Matters” as a source), a substandard writer, or – who knows? – maybe any 2-3 of the above. Whatever it is, I have read this sentence a dozen times, and I can’t figure out what she’s trying to say. But I’ll give it a try, here:

Is she saying Lott excluded mass shootings involving machine guns?   Well, yeah – there’s never been mass shooting by a legally-owned machine gun – meaning “fully automatic weapon” – in US history, at least not since the 1934 National Firearms Act (shaddap about the Valentine’s Day Massacre).  Lott “excluded” them because history and fact “excluded” them.  They don’t exist in the past 85 years, to say nothing of the six year time frame of the study Ms. Exstrum is yapping about.  

Is she saying that the overseas shootings used “machine guns” – well, no, the raw data points out that non-US mass shootings used a variety of firearms – the vast majority of them subject to stringent gun control, by the way, which would tend to reinforce Lott’s point, not Exstrum’s.   The list below includes incidents with “machine guns” (notably the 11/13 Paris massacre, carried out with military-grade AK47s – which are as illegal in France as they are here) , semi-automatic weapons, even manual repeaters:

Is the dispositive point that Lott focuses on foreign “public” “mass shootings?”    It makes no sense – Lott’s list of shootings in the US from 2009-2015 includes all sorts of locations – almost all public, mostly “gun-free zones”:

LIterally, there is no way to read “writing fellow” Exstrum’s sentence that makes it jibe with the facts.

I’m open to suggestions, here.

Exstrum also wrote – sort of – about Lott’s foray into police-on-black-citizen shootings:

In a 2016 study, Lott and co-author Carlisle Moody, a professor at the College of William & Mary and a member of the Crime Prevention Research Center’s academic advisory board, argue that white police officers do not unfairly discriminate against black suspects. In a Fox News op-ed about the study, Lott says, “Many people incorrectly believe the police are racist.”

To which she adds:

Of course, ample research has concluded that black suspects are much more likely to be shot by police than white ones. But the study nonetheless received coverage from the National ReviewBreitbart, and the Washington Times, with Breitbart saying Lott’s research “runs against the claims of groups like Black Lives Matter.”

 “Ample research”.   Is anyone but me seeing a google search for “shooting black people consensus” as Ms. Exstrum’s “research”?

Of course, there’s ample research on the other side as well – including this one, by Harvard professor Roland Fryor – that confirms at least the broad outline of Lott’s conclusion.  Fryer happens to be black, and also happened to have started his research believing he’s find the opposite conclusion – so this finding, against interest (where “interest” <> intellectual honesty). 

Conclusions  Er, don’t start a land war in Asia, and don’t use MoJo as a source against someone who’s been paying attention? 

The 12th Commandment

It’s an oldie but a goodie. And as we head toward another election sure to be driven by Big Left’s narratives and Trump’s responses to them, this bit here is worth committing to memory:

Courtesy Instapundit

Journalism is always about “asking the questions that matter” – where “matter” in this case means “furthers the narrative”.

Surprising Precisely Nobody

College Republican display at the U of M’s annual “Paint the Bridge” party vandalized.

For the fourth year in a row:

The group said their panel, which included text reading, “Donald Trump The Wall,” “Draining the Swamp,” and “America FIRST mentality,” was covered up within a day.

I wonder, sometimes, if the Democrats wonder what they’re messing with, here?

Conservatives on American campuses, after swimming upstream for four years and enduring the kind of abuse they endure, are going to be tougher than mule jerky.

In adult life, when those “kids” go up against the left’s generation of children of feckless entitled privlege, they’re going to slash through them like a lawn mower through a cabbage patch.

Campus Republican at Yale terms campus lefties’ eternal rage “Protester Derangement Syndrome”:

Sit-ins, hunger strikes and angry mobs: These are all things I became accustomed to in my late teens and early 20s. No, I haven’t been living in a country experiencing severe political unrest. I am living in New Haven, Conn., and attending Yale University as an undergrad.
While this may sound bizarre to you, behavior typical of a severely oppressed society has taken hold among students who are part of the Ivory Tower. I call it Protester Derangement Syndrome, or PDS for short.
Yale students enjoy luxuries akin to European aristocracy. Students live in resort-style housing that includes lavish feasts, massage parlors and recreational spaces that boast everything from a printing press to a pottery studio. However, Yale students afflicted with PDS display derangement symptoms similar to an oppressed religious cult. They refuse to interact with the world around them. They have demanded the buildings be renamed. They support the desecration of art. They sanitize history by demanding professors exclude certain authors from syllabi.
The Yale administration believes they can treat PDS through concessions and pacification. Unfortunately, their prescription has been ineffective.

I’m gonna so enjoy being “the real world” for these little twerps. Or at least the few of them that actually make it into the productive parts of the private sector, anyway.