DIY

When people can’t trust “the system” to keep them safe, they take matters into their own hands.

Italian immigrants – with social, religious, linguistic and cultural impediments to assimilation, cutting both ways – brought their underworld organizations from the old country to get some order (at a price) in their lives.

Ditto the Irish in New York and Chicago, and Jews all over the place.

Blacks? Remember Malcolm X and the Black Panthers?

And now? Middle class Minnesotans of all races, creeds and backgrounds. are strapping up. Gun purchase background checks (which, remember, only apply to handguns and “assault weapons”; shotguns, varmint rifles and plinkers require no contact with the government) are up well over 50% between August 2019 and last month.

And – as we’ve observed elsewere – the new buyer is a lot less likely to fit the stereotype Big Left puts out:

Dave Amon, an agent at Gunstop of Minnetonka, said the demand shows no signs of slowing especially as the changing role of law enforcement is in the spotlight, the Star Tribune reported.

“I’ve seen a lot more single moms that are scared and need something to protect them,” he said. “They’re scared when people talk about defunding the police.”

Given how long the DFL has bet on gun confiscation in the past year – clearly drooling over taking control of the Senate – I wonder if this is going to slow down the rush to grab, or accelerate it to try to get ahead of broad social acceptance?

Being a pessimist, I choose “B”.

Via Gary Gross.

Surpising Nobody…

…who has been paying attention: Violence in Portland is being orchestrated by a behind-the-scenes organization who, we are told, doesn’t exist:

We have overwhelming intelligence regarding the ideologies driving individuals towards violence and why the violence has continued,” Murphy wrote. “A core set of threat actors are organized, show up night after night, share common TTPs [tactics, techniques and procedures] and drawing on like minded individuals to their cause.”

But Minneapolis and Saint Paul?

It’s gotta be “white supremacists”.

The Worst Thing Ever

Ryan Winkler, the House Majority Leader, isn’t thrilled with President Trump stealing Joe Biden’s thunder:

Then the Majority Leader has had a pretty sheltered life.

Know what’s the worst thing I’ve ever heard?

Other than the Holocaust, the Great Leap Forward, the Gulag, the Holodomor, the Rape of Nanking, the subjugation of Tibet, the history of Haitian slavery, or pretty much an garden-variety genocide?

Well, not this…

But it was pretty bad anyway. And if Bogdan Vechirko – who owned no “white supremacist” paraphernalia at all, and heroically avoided hitting anyone (who wasn’t trying to get hit) wants to sue for slander, I’ll host a fundraiser.

Have you people call my people.

The Phantom Boogeyman

Salem had “witches”.

The far right and far left in Europe from the middle ages through the 1940s (and beyond) had “Jews”.

Jordan, Minnesota had “satanists“.

And Governor Klink and Mayor McDreamy had “white supremacists”.

It seems like such a long time ago that Big Left started predicting an imminent wave of “right wing white supremacist terrorism“.

And, like OJ, they are still looking:

This notion – that Big Left has been getting ready to launch a violent war against dissent, while blaming mostly-phantom “right wingers” – is where Berg’s Seventh Law ceases to be funny.

Bombshell

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

On May 31, prosecutors learned Floyd died of an overdose. On August 25, they admitted it in court.

Charges against the officers still have not been dismissed. One remains in jail, in super-max prison, in Oak Park Heights. 

I seem to recall someone in the comments lecturing me on the ethical duties of a prosecutor as explanation why he was confident the state would win a conviction.  Yeah?  Not when your own medical examiner concedes it was an overdose. 

I’m ready for my apology.  I bet Chauvin is, too.  I wonder if the Lawyer’s Board of Professional Responsibility is taking complaints in person these days, or on-line only.  Because sitting on exculpatory evidence for three months, publicly branding a man you know to be innocent as a murder, encouraging people to riot to protest a crime that never occured . . . those acts seem to violate the Rules of Professional Conduct, particularly Rules 3.8 (a), (d) and (f).

Joe Doakes

Part of my enduring pessimism about politics in Minnesota is that, between the media, the irregularities in the election system, and the mass of brainwashed droogs that would vote DFL if Josef Mengele came back from the dead and got the DFL endorsement by standing on his head while chanting “Black Cadavers Matter” and give him 70% of the vote anyway, is that accountability – at least, the accountability not manifested by people voting with their feet – always evades them.

If it doesn’t happen soon – in some form other than “Minneapolis turning into a cold Flint” – I’m not sure that it’ll matter anymore.

Statement Against Interest

“Prog” columnist looks at the statute and the evidence, concludes Kyle Rittenhouse will likely be acquitted.

I don’t disagree – and find that there’s ample grounds for caution for all the rest of us that take the Second Amendment seriously.

I homed in on these two passages:

When [the first “victim”, Joseph] Rosenbaum, who was unarmed, finally cornered Rittenhouse, he grabbed for the teenager’s gun. Multiple shots rang out, and Rosenbaum fell, mortally wounded.

Did Rittenhouse have a reasonable belief under the circumstances that if Rosenbaum got his gun he would suffer death or great bodily harm? Jurors in Wisconsin are instructed that “reasonable” means “what a person of ordinary intelligence and prudence would have believed … under the circumstances that existed at the time.”

And this bit here:

A third victim, Gaige Grosskreutz, 26, of West Allis, Wisconsin, who survived, first held up his hands in a gesture of surrender at a distance of a few feet. In one of his hands, he held a gun. But when he “moved toward” Rittenhouse, prosecutors said, Rittenhouse fired, striking him in the arm.

That final shooting “will be the most serious problem” for Rittenhouse at trial, Kling said. ”The guy did have a gun in his hand. But he wasn’t pointing it at or threatening Rittenhouse.”

My first carry permit instructor, the last Joel Rosenberg, used to put it this way: “You’ll be making a life-or-death decision in a split second, likely under incredible stress, in the dark, with incomplete information. The prosector will have weeks and months in a warm, well-lit building, protected by metal detectors and deputies, to decide whether you were right”.

Another of Joel’s sayings: “Shooting in self-defense is a choice between losing your life, and ruining it”.

Because while there’s a lot of rhetoric about deterring the madness, to say nothing of resisting it, it’s still incredibly risky, and under normal circumstances – and even some garden-variety extraordinary ones – best avoided:

Overwhelmingly I hear from the professionals that their plan for dealing with riots and mayhem is “Don’t be there.” Check the ego. Back away from the social media siren call to “be part of the solution.” Inserting yourself into a riot (AKA “war zone”) where we now know there are armed violent criminals (often felons) who are there with the expressed intent to do extreme violence to someone is, in my view, just foolish.

It’s said that good judgement comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgement. I sure have found that to be true a lot of times. In flying, we say you have a skill bucket and a luck bucket. You hope to fill your skill bucket before using up everything in the luck bucket.

For your consideration.

I’m Joe Biden, And I Approve This Bit Of Gaslighting

My jaw dropped to the floor when I saw the latest Biden ad, about the violence in our cities.

It’s not what’s in the ad, per se. It’s what’s missing.

Go ahead. What do you not see in this ad?

I’ll wait.

No identifiable “Anti”-Fa or BLM.

The only identifiable people in this ad are “right wing” protesters – in no case violent, not of of which burned or looted anything.

Biden – well, the people operating his animatronic controls, anyway – would have you believe the rioting, burning and looting, the coordinated and paid tantrum of the American Left (TM), was Trump’s fault.

This is what every spousal abuser says about their victims.

Cop Out

Hopkins School Board Vice-Chair Chris LaTondresse – did he tell you he’s an “Obama administration alum” yet?

The Defund the Police movement hitches it’s wagons into the western suburbs.

In the apparently halcyon days of April 2018, students and school officials of the Hopkins School District gathered together in what was called “National Walkout Day” in memory of the horrific tragedy of the Columbine school shootings 19 years earlier.  Students spoke of issues of gun control and school safety.  And while none of the student speakers were even alive when Columbine occurred, a common theme of seeking safety at school echoed in the various speeches.

A time-traveler from that April day in 2018 would have a hard time reconciling the Hopkins School District of just two and-a-half years later as the School Board voted to keep guns out of their schools – guns in the form of local police protection:

The Hopkins school board on Tuesday night embraced a student-led call to remove police from Hopkins High School — with the action to come at year’s end.

The 6-1 vote brings a suburban voice to a national movement that has sought to end the use of school resource officers, or SROs.

The move to defund Hopkins School Resource Officers comes after several months of intense online lobbying by a group calling themselves “CopsOutHHH” and a poll of Hopkins students in favor of the movement – a poll in which only 183 of the District’s 1,600 students voted.  By the end of the year, Hopkins will sever it’s relationship with the Minnetonka Police Department (the Hopkins School District includes parts of Edina and Minnetonka) in a move that supporter and Board Vice Chair Chris LaTondresse bizarrely described as not actually “defunding” the police since the contract was due to expire anyway.

LaTondresse, a DFL endorsed candidate for Hennepin County Commissioner who touts his consulting work for USAID as making him an “Obama administration alum” in the same way that I apparently was a member of Congress because I visited Washington D.C. once, claims the move will allows for more mental health funding.  Considering the SRO budget is $113,142 out of a budget of $91,502,418, the idea that shifting 0.01% of the School Board’s resources away from security and towards mental health will address either issue is laughable at best and incredibly dangerous at worse.

It’s also a conclusion that files in the face of peer-tested research.  Carleton University conducted a two-year study of SRO programs and in their report, published by Routledge in 2019, they concluded that for every dollar invested in the program, a minimum of $11.13 of social and economic value was created.  While attention would likely focus on the role the SRO could or did play in the estimated 525 school shootings over the past decade (a number in partial dispute as it groups any gun-related incidents on a school campus together), left unreported are the number of incidents prevented by early SRO intervention.  The group Averted School Violence has begun to attempt to collect and analyze such data, a task made somewhat difficult by the very nature of the endeavor – incidents that don’t escalate into violence rarely make the news.

LaTondresse and the Hopkins School Board also want to cite that SROs make students of color fundamentally uncomfortable.  While data can’t contend with feelings, even a Brookings Institute report from 2018 which was less than fully supportive of SROs as agents of school safety didn’t see any correlation between SROs and race.  Brookings believed context for arrest records and racial backgrounds were lacking and thus a poor metric to judge whether or not SROs were more likely to discriminate or otherwise negatively impact minority students.

But no amount of data – or even common sense – was present on Tuesday night as the Hopkins School Board voted to eliminate basic security without even so much as a concept of what would replace their School Resource Officers.  Instead, a small but vocal minority has continued to push a partisan agenda that endangers students for the goal of striking symbolic blow against the police.

For Posterity’s Sake

Stipulated in advance – we don’t know yet how the Rittenhouse case in Racine is going to end up.

Acknowledging up front that Berg’s 18th Law is in effect, it would appear that Rittenhouse’s first shooting might just be problematic, and that the second two appeared to be textbook legitimate self-defense.

Of course, earlier we noted the provenance of the two “victims”. The first person shot was a rather unsavory person whose behavior hash’t really been the subject of any public scrutiny:

The second person killed (and the ones wounded with him), either:

So – while it’s entirely possible the kid committed murder, it’d seem the idea that he’s a “white supremacist” might be just a tad bit of a stretch – and while all lives are precious to God, the path from the pedo and the thumper to “black” seems a little insurmountable.

With all of that exhaustively noted, I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say this tweet from Ayanna Pressley needs to not fall down the memory hole:

Heh.

UPDATE: Lin Wood and Rittenhouse’s defense team is on the ground swinging.

More later.

This Is Today’s News Media

This may be the greatest lower-third super (aka “Chyron”, aaka the graphic at the bottom of the shot)) in the history of propaganda:

When life gives you rotten fruit, ferment it down until you can make a flaming sambuca:

He’s Baaaaack

Ryan Winkler, Minnesota’s House Majority Leader – let that thought rattle around in your head a bit – replies to Senate Majority Leader Gazelka yesterday:

“Trump’s America is deadly!”

But the Tim Walz and Peggy Flanagan’s Minnesota is the part that is rioting, burning, looting, shedding businesses and jobs, boarding up, moving to the burbs or Wisconsin or the Greater or Lesser Dakota, buggering off, hitting the dusty trail for freer and safer horizons.

Alondra Cano’s Minnesota is the part that can’t run itself even in good times without massive transfers of wealth from the parts of the state that work (for now), the Republican parts.

Lisa Bender’s Minnesota is the part that considers “law and order” a form of unsustainable “privilege” for all you plebs, but pays a lot of your money so that it has that privilege for itself.

Ryan Winkler’s Minnesota is the part where a Harvard graduate and machine politician from a lilywhite “progressive” suburb full of NIMBYs can call one of the most distinguished jurists of our time an “Uncle Tom”, and then turn around and yap about “white supremacy” when his opponent compliments the men and women who are taking time off from their real lives to clean up yet another DFL mess.

If Ryan Winkler didn’t exist, the GOP would have to invent him.

Rittenhouse

I get it.

If you’re a businessperson, a law-abiding citizen, a resident of a place like Minneapolis or Saint Paul or Kenosha, you might be getting a little tired of being siultaneousy treated like a villain, a sucker and a pop-sociology punching bag.

And seeing the entitled, upper-middle-cass, over-schooled, undereducated “progressive” thugs and the depredations they wreak, you might just be as mad as hell and not in a mood to take it anymore.

You might even take the Second Amendment of the Constitution seirously, with its implied empowerment to defend your life, your family, your property, your community and your freedom.

And truth be told, I feel it too. The Thursday night after Memorial Day, when the destruction came to Saint Paul, the temptation to strap up and sit out on the porch with a book and a couple of poieces of ugly black insurance would have been pretty dang tempting if all of my guns hadn’t fallen into Mille Lacs, and they didn’t terrify me besides.

It’s even ore overwhelming when you have a government that seems, at least in Minnneapolis, Saint Paul and Minnesota at large, to be on the wrong side.

It’s times like this the urge to get some friends and gun up and find some bit of real estate to protect from the mob – your own, someone else’s, it matters little – is palpable.

It’s a lousy idea for two reasons.

For starters – in most states, the odds are good that you’ll come off worse, legally, than the scumbags.

And the scumbags want a civil war.

Let’s look at both problems.

Self-Defense – As we’ve noted in this space before, the rules for claiming self-defense are (intentionally?) a little opaque in many states, including MInnesota and Wisconsin.

To sum up the confluence of a little statute and a lot of case law:

  1. You must reasonably, immediately fear death or great bodily harm.  Reasonable means “it’ll convince a jury”.  Immediate means now; if someone says “I’m gonna kill you…tomorrow”, you can’t kill them first.
  2. You must use appropriate force.  In other words, you can only use the force needed to end the threat.  No more.
  3. You must make a reasonable effort to retreat.  Reasonable.  If you’re pushing your baby in a stroller, you don’t need to leave it behind.  If you’re a 70 year old man with a knee replacement attacked by four youths, you don’t need to try to out run them.  And in Minnesota, it doesn’t apply in your house.  In “Stand Your Ground” states, this provision is disregarded.  Minnesota is not a Stand Your Ground state.
  4. You must not be a willing participant: you can’t start a brawl, and then shoot someone who breaks a bottle.Put another way, you must not be the aggressor.

Berg’s 18th Law is in full effect, here – but given what we might know about the crime, it would seem that Rittenhouse may have the same problem as Alan Scarsella, the man who shot at some “protesters” who were chasing him and his friends away from the Fourth Precinct in North MInneapolis a few years ago. Scarsella likely met three of the criteria for self defense – but the prosecution painted him, successfully, as the aggressor . He didn’t have to go to North Minneapolis, and he certainly didn’t have to post a stupid video bragging about it.

We’ll see what happens.

Say You Want A Revolution – In 1933 as German president Paul Hindenburg mulled giving emergency power to a cabinet led by Adolph Hiter, among the biggest supporters of the power giveaway were…

…the German Communist Party. The Nazi’s “enemies”. They figured extremism woulds benefit them – when the middle becomes untenable, the extremes become self-preservation. It’d worked for the Communists in Russia, and showed promise in other European countries; the Hard Left’s discipline and organization enabled it to win a batte of the extremes over right wings that weren’t anywhere near organized enough to prevail against Big Left’s discipline and regimentation.

They banked wrong on the batatle against Hiter – but got the formula down in North Korea, China, and a fair chunk of the Third World in the fifties through the seventies, and evena few since.

They are banking on the same thing today. Not without good reason.

Remember

If you run a business in the Twin Cities, this is what you are up against:

Lotus has been a tradition in the Twin Cities as long as I’ve been here, and considerably longer. Even as Vietnamese restaurants got taken over by Thai joints (Unjustifiably, in my book), the Lotus has carried on.

But will they come back downtown? Will Ruth’s Chris? Brit’s?

Especially given that the photo above described, exactly, the support they can expect from the city of Minneapolis?

Would you?

Open Letter To Governor Walz: Therapy

To: Governor Walz
From: Mitch Berg – Former Rock and/or Cow, current Deplorable
Re: “Healing”

Governor,

Last night, as yet another round of looting began over a false rumor of another police shooting, you tweeted:

Heal?

You don’t “heal” from cancer while your tumors are still metastatizing.

Minneapolis’s disease is the long-standing tolerance of lawlessness toward political ends.

Every blocked freeway. Every “Anti”-fa outrage given a faint whisper of a slap on the wrist. Every child of the political class whose arson and looting and thuggery gets ignored. Every “progressive” city that declares itself above Federal immigraiton law. Every time you nudge and wink at progressive thugs – the spoiled, entitled, emotionally brittle, violence-prone, over-schooled / under-educated children of our political class (including, it might seem, the daughter of a certain sitting governor), every time you conflate “First Amendment” with “Room to Destroy”, every time you abandon parts of the city to the mob?

Every time you treat minority votes as your chattel?

Every time you and your party treat minority and immigrant neighborhoods as a place for people to take out their real or ginned-up frustrations with fire and baseball bats?

That’s the disease.

There is no healing until the disease is gone.

There will be no “healing” while cities like Minneapolis are nothing but Jimmy’s First Political Experiment Kit, for the political class to twirl the knobs and yank the levers and try to build a “progressive” utopia, rather than places where people live, work, and expect some level of fiscal and social return on the “investment” that is their taxes.

I’m not going to say “progressivism is the disease”.

But it’s the delivery system for everything Minneapolis needs to “heal” from.

That is all.

OpTempo

Caught in passing in the coverage of the rioting in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

The Wisconsin National Guard is on the scene.

Within 24 hours.

Roughly 1/3 of the time it took Governor Klink to get effective force onto the streets of Minneapolis.

I was about to ask “what does Wisconsin know that Minnesota doesn’t“?

But given that Wisconsin’s death rate from Covid is 40% lower than in Minnesota, the answer is clearly “damn near everything“..

UPDATE: A friend of the blog points out that while it doesn’t appear either the Mayor of Kenosha nor the Governor have any military background, they were able to call in the Guard without having to write up a detailed set of plans and orders for the military to follow.

Perhaps something Minnesota might emulate.

Fictional People On A Fictional Golf Course

SCENE: A golf course. THE REAL KILLERS – for whom OJ Simpson has been looking for a quarter century – are walking toward the first tee box when they are approached by THE WHITE SUPREMACIST HELL’s ANGEL

THE REAL KILLERS: Hey – we need a foursome. Wanna join us?

THE WHITE SUPREMACIST HELL’S ANGEL: Hey – aren’t you guys the…

THE REAL KILLERS: Yep, that’s us. Got a way scot-free for two murders. OJ is still out there, but he’ll never find us. Wanna tee up? And what’s your story again?

THE WHITE SUPREMACIST HELL’S ANGEL: Oh, I’m a white supremacist member of an outlaw bike club. Twin Cities and National media spread the word that I started the riots. Then I disappeared from the news forever.

THE REAL KILLERS: Wow. You kinda came and went in a hurry.

THE WHITE SUPREMACIST HELL’S ANGEL: I know, right? Hey – you mind if my friends (mostions toward THE ROVING PACKS OF WHITE SUPREMACISTS WHO SUPPOSEDLY DID THE LOOTING) play through real quick? They’re riding a unicorn, so they should be pretty fast.

THE REAL KILLERS: No problem! ( THE ROVING PACKS OF WHITE SUPREMACISTS WHO SUPPOSEDLY DID THE LOOTING wave “thanks” and gallop past)).

THE WHITE SUPREMACIST HELL’S ANGEL: Who is that playing up ahead of us?

THE REAL KILLERS: That’d be Jussie Smollet’s MAGA-hat-wearing attackers.

THE WHITE SUPREMACIST HELL’S ANGEL: Ahh. Hey, nice driver you got there…

(And SCENE)

Remember, Always…

The situation in Racime looks awful, and the rioters in Wisconsin (so far) are certainly running with it.

Video below is disturbing:

But remember – Berg’s 18th Law was written precisely about this sort of episode.

I wager a shiny new quarter we’re not getting the whole story.

Yet.

East Side Pride Shame

The Pioneer Press did the nearly-unthinkable: they asked people what they thought about John “F**k Hugo” Thompson’s tirade in Hugo on August 15.

There are an interesting array of opinions, con, pro and (in the case of most elected state pols) silent as a rat in a roomful of terriers. Not many want to “say his name”, apparently.

Although the GOP candidate for Thompson’s seat sure did:

Alexander Deputie, a Republican running against [an Eastside DFLer representing the Senate in Thompson’s district] for the Senate and an immigrant from Liberia, said: “I was a child when my family was forced out of our home and country by an armed mob, and I feel for those children in Hugo who were present during the event when it took place on Saturday.”

In regards to Thompson, Deputie said, “I can tell you that he does not represent all Black people. He does not represent me. John Thompson has made it clear that he is concerned for one group of people, and to be a state representative, you need to represent all your constituents.”

Quick note – I’ll be interviewing Deputie on tomorrow’s NARN broadcast. Pass the word.

Nice Business You Got There. It’d Be A Shame If It…Broke, Or Something

Minneapolis businesses destroyed when the City failed – no, abnegated, competely – at its responsibility to deliver the public safety and order that taxpayers expect…

have to pay in advance on their taxes to clear the rubble of the businesses that the City didn’t even bother protecting with last year’s taxes:

Light leaving “moral” today won’t reach Minneapolis’s city goverment until long after Mayor McDreamy’s great-grandchildren are collecting social security.

Until Proven Guilty

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

This is the kind of analysis the jury is likely to hear in the Floyd case, which is why I’ve been saying all along that it’s going to be a tough case to win.

Not saying this guy is correct, or that the jury will find his analysis persuasive, but this column shows why serving on the jury is not as simple as watching the video before voting to convict.  The defense gets a turn, too.

Joe Doakes

Attorney friends tell me Earl Gray is the real deal, defense-wise.

In other words, buckle in and pray for an April blizzard.

Peaceable Assembly

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

First Amendment of the Constitution protects the fundamental right to peaceably assemble and petition the government for redress of grievances.
60 days of rioting, burning down buildings, destroying property, is not what the Framers contemplated. Those are not peaceful protests so they’re not covered by the First Amendment. They are Insurrection, which must be put down to preserve civil order.

Portland needs to announce that we’ve had our little fun, but we’re done now. Starting tonight, anybody suspected of Riot will be shot on sight. Then shoot a few people,  “a whiff of the grape,” to encourage the others.

The time-out from reality is over. We are going back to constitutional republic.

Joe Doakes

The government of Portland – like that of Minneapolis, except apparently the Charter Commission – is so dependent on the (politically connected parents and aunts and uncles of the) mob in the streets, they wouldn’t dare raise a finger to them.

“Terribly Sad”

Can you imagine the tone if the two “idealistic young lawyers” in this story had worn MAGA hats?

I’m sure those young lawyers will do just fine pleading “moment of madness’ in court.

Mr. Spoor (a prog lawyer who has the most wonderfully occoponymous name, if you speak any Dutch at all) says that young people are prone to doing stupid things (true), and that we should have some forgiveness in our hearts. Throwing a firebomb shouldn’t rate 35 years in federal prison.

But forgiveness without atonement is meaningless – and I wager a shiny new quarter that the overentitled, over-schooled, under-educated wannabe Che Guevaras in this story feel no remorse whatsoever.

Regret over being caught? Sure.

Remorse? That’s for plebes.