When Everyone’s A Terrorist…

SCENE: Mitch Berg is walking through the Midway. He rounds a blind corner, and nearly runs into Avery LIBRELLE.

LIBRELLE: Merg!:

BERG: Oh, gooooouuuuuuuaaaaaaahhhey, Avery. How you doing?

LIBRELLE: Fine. Just one my way to the Midway Walmart to buy handgun ammunition.

BERG: Hey, Avery – remember when you proposed using the government’s “terrorism watch list” to keep people from owning guns?

LIBRELLE: I must have.

BERG: You did. And do you remember your response?

LIBRELLE: No.

BERG: You said I, and gun owners, were being “paranoid”.

LIBRELLE: You are.

BERG: Not so much:

The [San Francisco] board of supervisors passed a resolution on Tuesday officially labeling the gun rights’ group a domestic terrorist organization.
District 2 Supervisor Catherine Stefani, whose district includes the Marina and Presidio, wrote the declaration stating that the NRA “spreads propaganda that misinforms and aims to deceive the public about the dangers of gun violence.”
It said the NRA “musters its considerable wealth and organizational strength to promote gun ownership and incite gun owners to acts of violence.”
“All countries have violent and hateful people, but only in America do we give them ready access to assault weapons and large-capacity magazines thanks, in large part, to the National Rifle Association’s influence,” the declaration read.

:

BERG: In other words, you people label everyone you disagree with “Terrorists”.

LIBRELLE: Well, if the San Francisco City Council says so. It’s science, after all.

BERG: Of course. Hey, Avery?

LIBRELLE: Huh?

BERG: I’m an NRA member.

LIBRELLE: [Turns and runs in a wild-eyed panic]

BERG: [Whispers to self]Well, thanks for that, anyway, San Francisco…

And SCENE

#ThemToo

#MeToo, indeed.

Seems a Democrat activist did, in fact, what the Dems have spent the past three years condemning the President for *talking* about – not *actually* doing, mind you – while being surreptitiously filmed. A female GOP volunteer was sexually assaulted by a Democrat while working at the GOP booth.

So…all sexual harassment, to say nothing of assault, *isn’t* wrong?

#BelieveAccusers, indeed.

The attacker was a woman who was taking part in an organized demonstration at the GOP booth, by the way – one of an organized throng of goons who bum-rushed the booth yelling “F**k Trump”.

They – a half dozen guys – also harassed the three women, including Chair Carnahan, who were busy closing up the booth last night. Ever notice how it’s always throngs of male goons attacking women, alone or in small groups (like the “Anti”-Fa thugs who teamed up on Preya Samsundar two years ago)?

#Toxic “#Masculinity” indeed (or, more likely, proof that “toxic” masculinity isn’t “masculine” at all).

Berg’s Seventh Law is universal and omnipresent.

While I want to respect the victim’s privacy, I hope the video comes out.

I got a chance to interview, Chairwoman Carnahan on my show Saturda. She pointed out that she got all sorts of craven catcalling when she visited the DFL booth – whereas the DFL’s chair, Ken Martin, was treated with civility and respect at the GOP booth.

This is pretty much par for the course; in 2018, Saint Paul DFL mayor Melvin Carter felt perfectly comfortable walking into my GOP caucus meeting and giving a quick talk – which I, the chair, allowed, because hey, we gotta try to run a democracy together, right? But was *zero* chance in hell I could have returned the favor without an outbreak of hissing and complaints that I’d “triggered” someone or another.

Civility; it’s a one-way street in the Metro.

And what a perfect representation of Urban Progressive Privilege, huh? The thought that one might feel not only empowered, but entitled, to commit sexual assault in service of one’s politics, with the active encouragement of your fellow Democrats?

Who are the “resistance”, here, anyway?


Since Tony-Soprano-Style Trash Collection Was Such A Success…

Around November 1 of every year, ever since I’ve lived in my house in the early ’90s, the guy who somehow inherited the job of “block captain” on our block drops an envelope in everyone’s door with a flyer asking for $20 to cover snow plowing.

It’s the biggest bargain – one of the few bargains left – in Saint Paul; he gives it to a plow driver. The driver lives on the block – so he literally needs to plow our driveway to get to work anyway.

So anytime there’s more than a dusting of snow, our alley is plowed to a fine sheen. And since side streets in my neighborhood are only plowed by the sun in April, the fact that our guy blasts out the street on the east side of the block to get to Minnehaha (a city snow emergency route) is almost literally a lifesaver.

Of course, it’s something that works – which, in a one-party kleptocracy like Saint Paul, means someone’s gotta try to appropriate it.

The same Merriam Park harpies that jammed down the smoking ban (years before the rest of the state) and, most recently, Tony-Soprano-style trash hauling, have been nattering away about socializing alley plowing for the past fifteen years.

It’s flying about as well as…well, the trash system:

Consultants from the University of Minnesota found little public appetite for the level of services the city likely would be able to offer.
Most residents who contract private alley plowers said they were unwilling to pay more than $15 per season for the city to complete the same service, and they expressed concern that the city might actually provide less snow removal and only plow after snow emergencies.
“Respondents will expect the city to plow the alleys after each snowfall or after a 2-inch snowfall, alleys to be plowed at the same time as main streets or at the same time as residential streets,” states a study summary. “Residents will be willing to pay an amount that would not be more than the amount they are currently paying, or less than $15 per season.”

Of course, the fact that real people who live in Saint Paul don’t want it is no defense; the little pack of “woke” Merriam Park biddies who burned countless hours of their worthless labor banning smoking in bars they never went to, and jamming down a trash collection system nobody wants – have sent their little hive minds on it.

For St. Paul to remove alley snow, consultants estimated $3.1 million in one-time start-up costs, such as new plow trucks, and $4.8 million in ongoing annual costs for labor, maintenance, training and recruitment.
That’s a total cost of $7.9 million in year one alone — or more than $100 for each of the city’s 74,000 households. Adding in business storefronts would reduce the cost.

Except to the businesses. Those few that are left, anyway. And that cost will be passed on to consumers – again, the few that are left.

But it’ll happen. Mark my words.

Economic Pauline Kael Syndrome

News Report:   BMW dealers in Hollywood report that import car tariffs aren’t affecting sales to their multimillionaire clients at all.  

Not a big shock, right?  The more money people have, the less price points matter to them.  

It’s Economics 101.  

Which is why “journalists” and progressives (ptr) never, ever get it. 

Remember Obama’s 2014 State of the Union?  When he praised Saint Paul’s “Punch Pizza” for paying its employees well above the minimum wage?    Of course, as I pointed out at the time, Punch is a high-end pizzeria in a posh neighborhood that aims toward a high-value clientele on Grand Avenue in Saint Paul; I wouldn’t doubt that in a neighborhood full of “living wage” activists, starting people at $10 an hour at above the minimum wage is good marketing.  But Punch Pizza is no Taco Bell; its dozen or so outlets are located in upscale areas, where people think nothing for dropping $20 for lunch  and a lot more for dinner and drinks.  It’s a tony niche retailer that gives a robust markup for an uptown dining experience.   And I’m gonna guess they an pick and choose their hires, even now, unlike the McDonalds and White Castles they’re not actually in competition with. 

I thought about that in reading this piece, claiming NYC’s $15 minimum wage is a net gain…

in the Manhattan restaurant scene:

As New York raised the minimum wage to $15 this year from $7.25 in 2013, its restaurant industry outperformed the rest of the US in job growth and expansion, a new study found.

The study, by researchers from the New School and the New York think tank National Employment Law Project, found no negative employment effects of the city increasing its minimum wage to $15.

Restaurant workers in the city saw a pay increase of 20% to 28%, representing the largest hike “for a big group of low-wage workers since the 1960s,” James Parrott, a director of economic and fiscal policies at the New School and an author of the study, told Gothamist.

While the city’s restaurant growth is likely a result of the city’s overall strong economy, the report’s findings might suggest that paying workers more won’t immediately lead to job loss or other negative business consequences as previously thought.

And when the current boom in people with disposable income tails off, the artisanal chicken will come home to their $5K a month walkups to roost.

Loose The Hysterical Ninnies Of Hell

Justin Perpich – scion of the Iron Range political family, but otherwise just another Metrocrat progressive fop – writes:

So the next time some progressive demands “why can’t we have ‘commonsense gun control'”, answer “because your side lacks common sense”.

Bonus: “Why are ‘red flag laws” without due judicial process a terrible idea?” Answer: Because people like Justin Perpich (and many, many like him( are not alone.

Misery Loves Company

Progressives, being fundamentally miserable people, see misery as a tool to their ends.

Big Left today is exercising “Recession Porn”, hoping for an economic downturn to get rid of Trump.

Bill Maher:

It’s amazing what liberals daydream about. While many of us might imagine wealth, fame, or attractive women (sorry, Zsu-Zsu), Bill Maher dreams of a recession that would lead to massive job losses and foreclosed homes.

Maher: “I’ve been hoping for a recession – people hate me for it – but it would get rid of Trump.”
Josh Barro: “Recessions are really bad. People lose their jobs and homes and we shouldn’t wish for it.”
Maher: “I know. It’s worth it.”

Actually, it’s only “worth it” if Maher loses his job.


And Maher isn’t even the most depraved among ’em.

Usually.

Hurt Feelings

A friend of the blog writes:

Betty McCollum doesn’t like the language in this application for Grant money for ShotSpotter.
In a July 19 e-mail to City Council members, Chief of Staff Bill Harper wrote that the application “paints a picture that our office feels is not reflective of the city and the people of St. Paul. Furthermore, the inaccurate manner in which the Green Line is characterized undermines the necessary work to advance transit funding.”
The e-mail compared language in the grant application to how President Donald Trump talks about U.S. cities.
I wish she would spend some time in the neighborhoods along the Green Line sometime. Walk around at night. Do some police ride-alongs. Ride the train at night.

“Telling the truth about Democrat governance” is “racist”, these days.

Shocking Nobody

Over ninety pecent of barristas predict coffee will be brewed at Metro coffee shops tomorrow.

Ninety percent of city government employees predict that some of their co-workers will take more coffee breaks than work time.

And in related news, a Pew poll says 90+% of Democrats predict violence erupting from tour current political situation:

Nearly 8 of 10 Americans told the Pew Research Center that supporters for both sides could “act” on the politically charged rhetoric with violence. It was higher for Democrats, 91%, than Republicans, 61%.

Ever notice how when you show a “progressive” a picture of a gun, they think “someone going crazy with a gun out of the clear blue sky”? When you show them a picture of a wealthy person they think of someone who predates on their fellow human? When you show them a gun owner, their thoughts turn immediately to genitals?

Likewise, when you mention political violence to the party of Kathleen Soliah, of “Anti”-Fa, of the Weather Underground and the Unibomber, you get…

…well, we know where this is headed, right?

Burn Portland (Legally) To The Ground

“Anti”-fa thugs – upper-middle-class children of our idiot “elites” all, wearing masks to give them a little anonymous mob bravery – attack and injure Andy Ngo, editor of Quillette, the academic left’s current bete noir. It took place in, where else, Portland Oregon – the “Minneapolis of the West”.

The government of Portland – being largely the parents, uncles and aunts, teachers and employers of the “Anti”-fa thugs, sit on their hands at best, cheer along and order the cops to stand down at worst.

The “Elite” media? They’re even worse, gaslighting Ngo and his supporters.

Ngo was viciously assaulted on Saturday afternoon while he was covering Antifa protesters. In a video posted online, the journalist was kicked, punched, and had milkshakes thrown on him by the left-wing thugs. According to Portland Police, some of the milkshakes being tossed by Antifa reportedly contained quick-dry cement.
Soon after the attack, Dhillon informed the public that Ngo “is being admitted to the hospital overnight as a result of a brain bleed.”

Portland’s neo-socialist government, and the media (but I repeat myself) say do nothing at the very least, participate in a hate crime at worst.

I’m thinking it’s time for some litigation therapy. And it sounds like Mr. Ngo’s attorney has the right attitude:

I’m liking the cut of her jib, as they say.

#Resistance Is Feudal

According to the not-at-all-conservative but fairly rational Joel Kotkin, the modern left is retreating into a sort of feudalist orthodoxy:

In the past, the right, notably the segment affiliated with religious belief, was closely associated with censorship and control of thought. Today, enforced orthodoxy derives primarily from the left, emboldened by near total control of the media, university curricula and cultural products.
Remarkably [to the authors, anyway – Ed.], a recent study by the Atlantic found that “the most politically intolerant Americans” tend be white, highly educated urban progressives.
Conservatives may have once driven intolerance from the pulpit and the press, but they no longer have the ability to exercise thought control in a meaningful way.

Long ago, religious zealots embraced feudal ideals, but increasingly it’s the ultra-secular progressives who reprise the role of Medieval Inquisitors.

One of the things that originally led to “Berg’s Seventh Law” was noticing that, while John Kerry was quick to condescend to his various opponents’ lack of “Nuance” in approaching complex issues, it was in fact people on the left that exercised the most rigorously reductionistic approach to analyzing the world.

I’m happy to see I’m not alone:


Today these ideals are being undermined by a fevered rush to reject empiricism and complexity. “There’s a lot of people more concerned about being precisely, factually, and semantically correct than about being morally right,” suggests the left’s super-star Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez .
This emphasis on intent and “morality” reflects a more Medieval attitude than that of a reasoned politics that grows from facts and evidence.
As in the Middle Ages, the new progressives often seek to impose a secular version of the imperial theocracy. Like the Medieval Catholic Church, new school progressives often exhibit hostility to the roots of our own past, whether verities contained in Shakespeare, the writings of the founders or even the notion of disinterested jurisprudence. In the new fundamentalism, as in the old, there can be only one set of truths, while all others are viewed as evil.

Can you remember when this scene…

…actually didn’t remind you of a typical day at a modern American university?

An Exercise In Imagination

I’m trying to imagine the wave of outrage that’d ensue if someone were to observe a black man mouthing off to a bunch of “white supremacists”, and getting pummeled for his troubles, and say “well, he kind of had it coming”.

Or a Jew, after getting lippy with some Nazis, “kinda brought it on himself”.

So it was interesting listening to NPR host Al Letzen – of “The Reveal”, which is one of NPR’s attempts to package African-American-sounding voices into a package palatable for the virtue-signaling “progressive” whites that are NPR’s audience. Letzen found some fame outside the NPR echo chamber a few years ago for rescuing someone who was being pummeled by some more of those virtue-signalilng progressive white guys in “Anti”-Fa.

Turns out the guy was an “out” White Supremacist. Letzen got a chance to interview him later – and his observations about how it’s naive to expect a kumbaya moment are interesting enough.

Not nearly as interesting as his statement “brought it on himself”.

Let’s recap that; free, hateful, obnoxious speech “dservers” a group beat-down by a bunch of cowardly rich kids playing commie thug?

The Freedom To Kill Freedom, The Right To Squelch Rights

Ever notice how so much of the power “progressives” seek involves squashing the rights of others – especially those living in one-party “progressive” wastelands?

I’ve been noticing a log of agitation in “prog” media against state pre-emption laws – laws that prevent cities, almost invariably “progressive” cities with authoritarian one-party rule – from passing laws that are stricter than state laws on certain subjects.

And those “certain subjects” invariably involve the economic and personal freedom:

Many of these preemption bills at the state level overrule local decisions about inclusiveness, housing rules, the minimum wage, and other issues. The updated report found the most common issues subject to preemption included tax and expenditure limitations (with laws in 42 states), ride sharing regulations (41 states), minimum wage (28 states) and paid leave (23 states). There have also been preemption legislation aimed at limiting a city’s ability to enact stricter gun laws or ban plastic bags…Preemption has important ramifications for many of the new business models and technologies changing cities and real estate, including home sharing, ride hailing, and the potential introduction of municipal broadband. While statewide regulations can simplify operations, they also sacrifice local nuances and control, and in many cases, take away a localities rights to control or introduce new services. Twenty states have banned localities from creating their own broadband systems.

Pre-emption is the one reason the “citizens” (borderline subjects) of Minneapolis and Saint Paul still have the right to defend themselves.

And you can be the DFL is taking aim at that. Every single session.

The Problem…

…with trying to run a society with the entitled cranks that make up so much of the modern left is that if you’re a consevative, they really, really hate you and the idea of sharing a society with you.

University of Texas “Anarchist” (really Maxarchist) group promises to “dox” students who joint the campus’s conservative organization:

“Hey #UT23! Do you wanna be famous? If you join YCT or Turning Point USA, you just might be. Your name and more could end up on an article like one of these,” the tweet said, linking to previous doxxing posts of conservative students at the school. “So be sure to make smart choices at #UTOrientation

There are times I wish I was still in school.

The Wrong Profile

The unqualified David Hogg couldn’t get into a junior college in Florida on his merits, but Harvard grabbed him because he’s got the right Social Justice profile. 

Kyle Kashuv – who survived the same shooting – got into Harvard on his merits.  

Or so he thought.  

Kashuv explains in this twitter thread:

Because it’s not enough merely to be a victim (forget about pretty brilliant). It’s about being the right kind of victim. Otherwise, you’re expendable – and, if you’re too obstreporous, must be destroyed.

Oberlin: Bouncing The Rubble

On top of the $11 million in compensatory damages a few weeks back, an Ohio court has awarded Gibon’s Bakery $22 million – the statutory maxiumum – in punitive damages over the bakery’s defamation suite:

The counts were:
Defamation – Oberlin College and Raimondo were found liable
Infliction of intentional emotional distress – Oberlin College was found liable
Intentional interference of business relationships – Raimondo was found liable
Oberlin College President Carmen Twillie Ambar in a letter to the campus community on Friday expressed dissatisfaction with the jury’s decision, and signaled the college plans to appeal its findings.
“Let me be absolutely clear: This is not the final outcome. This is, in fact, just one step along the way of what may turn out to be a lengthy and complex legal process,” Twillie Ambar said. “We are disappointed in the jury’s decisions and the fragmentary and sometimes distorted public discussion of this case. But we respect the integrity of the jury, and we value our relationship with the town and region that are our home.”

Note to Social Justice warriors – outside your bubble, your curious illogic doesn’t fly. As Paul Mirengoff notes:

As I understand it, Oberlin argued at trial that it isn’t liable because its students, not the college, were to blame for harming Gibson’s. Then, at the damages phase, Oberlin argued that the college shouldn’t be slammed with a big damages assessment because that outcome would harm its students.
I suspect the jury hated Oberlin and its students and wanted to punish both.

And it turns out that outside that bubble, real-world rules apply..

…to the chagrin and, I suspect, the deep surprise of the SJWs.

It’s a wonderful day.

Let’s Get This Straight

So what we have here is:

  • A bunch of shrill, upper-middle-class, white, college-miseducated “feminists”, duking it out with…
  • People who actually survived, or have relatives who are trying to survive, the socialism-driven implosion of what was once a prosperous nation.

Yep, that’s what we have:

Liberal activists from the anti-war group Code Pink are refusing to leave the abandoned Venezuelan embassy in Washington, vowing to protect the building from a “hostile takeover” as the U.S. State Department labels them “trespassers” and calls on them to leave.
About 50 pro-regime activists have been living inside the building for several weeks in support of embattled socialist President Nicolas Maduro. In recent days, they’ve clashed outside the embassy with supporters of opposition leader Juan Guaido, who has called for a military uprising in Venezuela and has the support of the Trump administration.


Can there be a better example of Urban Progressive Privilege than people like Media Benjamin progsplaining actual Venezuelans?

It’s sort of the logical extension of former MN State Senator Larry Pogemiller saying on the record that he didn’t believe people knew how to spend their money better than government does.

Tax money, freedom, survival – all pretty much the same, isn’t it?

“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.

Habitually Fabulistic And Intellectually Slothful Nancy

I’ve said it in the past – the Reverend Nancy Nord Bence, the director of “Protect Minnesota“, has never, not once made a statement about guns, gun laws, gun owners, the Second Amendment, the history of the Second Amendment, or gun crime that is simultaneously substantial, original and true.

Not once.

Yes, I can back that up, if you want to sit down and go through her record point by point. It’s not even close.

She may have sunk to a new low today; she sent this out in her email blast to her organization.

Of course, she is (let’s give her the benefit of the doubt) mistaken; the relentlessly civil and polite to a fault Rob Doar said no such thing. She is referring to Benjamin Dorr , leader of the fraud/huckster Fundraising scam “Minnesota Gun Rights”, Who is (in my relentlessly accurate opinion) a fraud and a loathsome person to boot.

Nord Bence has been informed of her “error” and told to retract. She still has not.

This is the voice of gun control in Minnesota.

UPDATE:  As of Monday night, the statement had been removed from Facebook.  However, as yet no retraction has gone to the dozens who get “P”M’s emails.

A Civilization That Drowns In Crap…

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

A city that can’t stop its own residents from pooping in the streets is uncivilized, regardless of how many cool apps they develop to track the city’s decline.
Lack of affordable housing is caused entirely by liberal policies: rent vouchers, zoning and subdivision regulations, public housing subsidies, housing inspectors. 
The author has absolutely no idea how the real world works.  It’s telling that her editor approved this piece, and the magazine published it, and subscribers didn’t burn down the offices in derision.  None of them have a clue, either.  They only know Trump is obsessed with poop.  He’s a Big Poopie Head.  He’s the reason San Francisco is sliding toward catastrophe.

There are a lot of “hallmarks of civilization” – but one of the things that makes advanced, healthy civilization possible is the orderly removal of, um, waste. A society that forgets that might not realize exactly why civilization is becoming less…civil in so many vital ways.