Sell At A Loss: Make Up For It With Volume

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Venezuela has national health care, guaranteed free to all citizens.  Free that is, if you can get any.  The hospitals have no medicine, no money, no beds available.

But if you could get treatment, it would be free.  So that’s way better than our system in the US, right?  We should change to their system at once, right?

Joe Doakes

Give ’em time.

In Which The LA Times Goes Long On Freedom

I can not be the only one to have noted the jarring irony of the LA Times’ piece, almost two weeks ago, warning against gutting freedom over ugly, but rare, outrages – can I?

The gruesome terror attack that left eight people dead on a New York City bicycle path Tuesday afternoon spotlighted a troubling reality: Society cannot safeguard itself against every dangerous eventuality.
Nevertheless, there are plenty of people who will pretend that it can — and who will tell you they know how to do it. Already, those who oppose immigration are making hay out of the fact that the attack’s perpetrator entered the country seven years ago through what’s known as the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program. And President Trump pushed the discussion further into dangerous ground Wednesday when he seemed to urge that safeguards in the legal system be undercut in the name of swift vengeance. “We need quick justice and we need strong justice — much quicker and much stronger than we have right now,” Trump said.

The president’s insistence that the justice system in this country is a “joke” and a “laughingstock” built on political correctness is worrisome, given his authoritarian tendencies. The idea that constitutional protections should be gutted because Trump is upset is both legally and morally absurd.

That’s when the weapon is a car.

I’m wondering if there isn’t something about leftism that makes it impossible for people to detect logical inconsistency or irony.

Damned If You Don’t

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Every day, new claims of sexual harassment against powerful men. Some are admitted and therefore true. Some are denied and may be true, may not be. All are possible only because powerful men spent time alone with women not their wives. Which brings us back to Vice President Mike Pence, who got a ton of grief for practicing the defensive policies necessary to avoid false claims of sexual harassment and avoid the temptation to engage in it. I assume an apology will shortly be forthcoming.

Joe Doakes

Of course it will be…

Ain’t Nothing But A NARN Party

Join me from 1-3PM today on the NARN!

Today on the show:

  • Sexual Harassment and Politics
  • Gun control’s latest:  “Shut up”, they explained.

Don’t forget – King Banaian is on from 9-11AM on AM1440, and Brad Carlson is  on “The Closer” edition of the NARN Sundays from 2-3PM.

So tune in the Northern Alliance! You have so many options:

Join us!

And Here You Go

After about 32 years of trying to write music, a year of recording stuff, and a few months of frantic planning, it’s here:  the debut (and who knows, likely final) album by my band, The Supreme Soviet of Love.

See Red goes onsale today at your favorite music online music retailer:

The album includes a few songs that date back to the eighties – “Fourth of July”, “Chicago” and “Great Northern Avenue” are songs I used to play with bands back at the Seventh Street Entry way back when.

Others – “The Wonders Each New Day Brings”, “Almost Monday” and “Snake”, among others – are things I wrote in the past year, largely to prove to myself that the whole thing wasn’t just a nostalgia exercise.

And a couple others – “Shotgun”, “The Ugly LIghts” – split the difference; they’re lyrical reboots of ideas that’ve been knocking around my head for years, sometimes decades.

Anyway – the album is on sales as of today:

Coming soon (like, probably today) on:

  • iHeart Radio
  • YouTube Music
  • Spotify
  • Pandora

And hey – it’s priced to move!

And I’d be remiss if I didn’t remind y’all one last time:


Tomorrow (Saturday) Night:  Elephant in the Room (rock and roll covers, ’50s-’90s) at the Sundance in Maple Grove

8-12PM.  No cover.


Sunday Night:  Album Release Party; The Supreme Soviet of Love at O‘Gara’s in Saint Paul

5-9PM:  $5 cover.


Hope to see you there!

Catch And Release

Twenty-odd years ago, when Minnesota and the nation were in the midst of the worst wave of violent crime since the Depression, quite a few jurisdictions – working with groups like the NRA – actually did something useful; they passed a raft of laws enhancing the penalties for using a gun in a crime.

The laws have had an effect; they are certainly part of the reason violent and gun crime dropped 50% in 20 years.

But in Minnesota, we have a congenital problem; our metro area legislators, courts and other jurisdictions just don’t like sentencing people.   It was said that three consecutive Ramsey County attorneys – Tom Foley, Sue Gaertner and John Choi – between them never once actually used those sentence enhancements, dealing them away on plea bargains every single time they had the opportunity.

And the pattern continues,

Earlier this year, we featured the story of a Good Guy with a Gun – an employee at a cell phone store who shot a robber with his permitted handgun.   The robber – once he got out of the hospitals – drew a raft of charges.   His accomplice should have as well.

Earlier this week, what do you suppose happened?

Charges have been dropped against a 32-year-old man who was a suspect in connection to an armed robbery at a Verizon Wireless retailer in Inver Grove Heights, according to court records.

Records show Jamaal Marquie had three charges dropped, including aggravated first-degree robbery, possession of a firearm by an ineligible person and possession of a firearm with a serial number removed.

Nothing new here; we’ve previously encountered metro-area prosecutors bending over backwards to avoid using enhanced gun sentencing.

Is it laziness?  Sloth?  Or not wanting to confirm the NRA’s line for it?

Cosmic Theological Mystery

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Why do Liberals hate Christ?

 

A couple of days before Jesus was crucified, he was in the town of Bethany visiting the home of Simon the Leper.  A woman dabbed expensive perfume on Him causing some of the disciples to object:  “Why has it been wasted?  We could have sold it to raise money for the poor.”  Jesus rebuked them, saying: “Leave her alone.  You’ll always have poor people, you can help them whenever you like; but I won’t always be with you.”

 

We’ll always have poor people?  Liberals hate that idea.  It’s intolerable!  We must eliminate poor people.  It doesn’t matter why they’re poor – the shiftless drunkard puking on his own shoes is just as deserving as his barefoot little girl in the torn dress, looking up with big brown eyes.  Jesus was wrong!  Jesus was a quitter!  We refuse to accept His reality.  God may have made the world in His image but we will remake the world in our image and there will be no income inequality, no reward for perseverance and no punishment for indolence, only perfect equality in all things.

 

Heinlein’s hinted at this in “Stranger in a Strange Land,” when the Man from Mars learns about religion and happily proclaims: “Thou art God. I am God.  All that groks is God.”  Well, Hell, if we’re all God, then we have a perfect right to alter creation, to demand perfection.  Forget the Garden of Eden, we can have paradise right here on Earth.  We’re entitled to it.  We are God.

 

That’s why Liberals hate Christ.  They hate having competition.

 

Joe Doakes

Stage IV Pauline Kael Syndrome

Katha Pollitt is sort of a gender affirmative action project; Big Leftymedia has Jonathan Chait, so the need a female version (pardon the redundancy).

She never disappoints, which is another way of saying if you have any hope that our coastal elite can be salvaged, she disappoints intensely.

In this case, Pollitt “writes” about the rage that’s been buiding in her since…well, that day last November:

Unlike my friend’s, my life has changed a lot in the year since Trump was elected. Not materially, except for the fact that my stepson and daughter-in-law moved to Canada partly because, as non-citizens, they worried for their futures here in the US.

Er, right.  That’s why they moved.  Not to be rid of their ninny mother in law. Nosirreebob.

I mean psychologically. I sometimes feel like I’m a different person now. I’m fidgety and irritable and have trouble concentrating.

I have little doubt that the affliction is real; she hands out straight lines like after-dinner mints; either she’s so addled by her rage, or so secure in never being challenged by her audience:

My work seems trivial: Given what we are facing, what difference does one more Nation column make? I might as well be an ancient Egyptian scribe logging production figures for cat mummies.

Katha:  your work is trivial.  Even when your guy was in power, you were a joyless scold who served only to fluff your social class’s sense of self-importance.

Today, you are the same thing, plus depression born of unrequited entitlement.  Mazel tov.

In the old days, the days before Trump, it bothered me that so many people loved things I thought were stupid. Now I just think, Go ahead, enjoy yourself. Maybe your Batman DVDs will comfort you when we’re wandering around in the ashen hellscape of whatever apocalypse Trump will bring down upon us.

Katha:  Sylvia Plath called.  She told you to buck up and quit being such a downer.

But the main difference is that I hate people now. Well, not all people, of course. Just people who voted for Trump.

Of course you hate people “now”, Katha.

People who do their own “research” on the Internet and discover there that President Obama is a Muslim and Michelle Obama is a man. People who use the n-word and can’t even spell it right, because—have you noticed?—Trump supporters can’t spell. Well-off people who only care about lowering their taxes. People who said they couldn’t vote for Hillary because of her emails. Excuse me, sir or madam, can you explain to me what an email server even is?

The real question, Katha, is can you?

No.  You can’t.

If you want to see example 25,695 on why Trump/Pence are going to win re-election in 2020, look no further.

Open Letter To The Law-Enforcement/Media Complex

To:  The Mainstream Media, and the cops and prosecutors who are your sources
From:  Mitch Berg, obstreporous peasant
Re:  World’s Smallest Violin

Dear Cops, Prosecutors and their Media mouthpieces,

Last week, a shooter at a WalMart in the Denver area killed three people.

Colorado being a shall-issue state, and WalMart being an almost-stereotypical hangout for Real Americans [1], a number of people reacted admirably, courageously and appropriately, by drawing their legal firearms and getting ready to engage.

And that just annoys all of you, doesn’t it?

But those who drew weapons during the shootings ultimately delayed the investigation as authorities pored over surveillance videotape trying to identify the assailant who killed three people, police said Thursday.

Let me put this as delicately as it deserves to be put;  f**k you, and your whining about being forced to do your jobs because people had the unmitigated gall to defend themselves.  And the media for carrying this whining as if it’s news.

If someone hears shooting in the room they’re in, and their first thought is “I hope my actions don’t impede the police investigating why I am dead”, rather than defending your life, your family and your community (whether by fight or flight, and I’ll never judge either one), then they are mentally ill; if you think that should be the normal response, then you’re a lot worse.

I used to wonder why the news media and officialdom wondered why people these days trust them less than used car dealers.  Now, I curse their gall for wasting my time asking why they wonder.

[1] Defined, in this case, as “people who take all ten amendments of the Bill of Rights seriously, jointly and severally.

Reporters

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Texas church shooter was an escaped mental patient so he was ineligible to buy a gun.  Really?  One reporter writes the story, every news outlet repeats it using exactly the same words: “Involuntary commitment to a mental institution would have been grounds to deny him . . . .”  Yes, it would have been, if that’s what had happened.  Was it?

Here’s the federal form to buy a gun.  Question 11f is the relevant question.  The instructions on the following page make clear that visiting a mental health institution, or working in one, or having a relative in one, or even being held in one pending trial, is NOT a disqualifying event.  There must be an adjudication by a court that a person suffers from mental illness and is a danger to himself or others.  “Adjudication” means a hearing before a judge with an opportunity to present witnesses in your own defense – a competency hearing.  At this point, I see no evidence that happened to this guy.

Reporters breathlessly scooping each other; commentators expounding upon the implications of false premises; politicians waving the bloody shirt as provocation; and not one of them actually knows what they’re talking about.  No wonder our national conversation on such a serious topic is indistinguishable from white noise.

Joe Doakes

And half the electorate thinks that the media is putting out intelligent, balanced “journalism”.

It’s pathetic.

2017 Tour

Waaaay back last summer, when I  planned to release a Supreme Soviet of Love album, I picked a date:  November 12.  A Sunday night.  Few conflicts, start and finish times early enough to get everyone home for the evenings news – perfect!

My other band, “Elephant in the Room”, after taking taking a few months off to learn new material and change lineup, on the other hand, spent most of the year looking for a gig.

Any gig.

So between scheduleing a Supreme Soviet of Love gig for November 12 way back in July, and today, what happened?

Of course Elephant in the Room landed a gig for November 11.

So talk about this weekend!.


Saturday, November 11 – the Sundance in Maple Grove

Elephant in the Room will be playing at the Sundance in Maple Grove from 8 to midnight.  

EITR does classic rock covers from the 1950s through the 1990s – a grab bag of Elvis, the Kinks, Ian Hunter, the Cars, Bad Company, the Stones, the Who, Jimi Hendrix, the Eagles, Steve Miller, Tom Petty, John Mellencamp, Johnny Cash…

…well, pretty much anything that grabs you from that entire forty year period.

And the Sundance – which I just visited for the first time last weekend – is a nice place; bowling, golf (probably not much of that ’til spring), good pizza, decent beer selection, “Steak Night” on Saturdays ’til 8PM (just $10!), and, of course, live entertainment.  That’d be us, of course.  No cover that I”m aware of, which makes it even nicer.

It feels like it’s way out there – but it’s actually super easy to get to:

It should be a fun night and a fun gig.

Hope you can make it!


Sunday, November 12 – O’Gara’s in Saint Paul

This gets complicated, so stick with me, here:

“The Supreme Soviet of Love” will be having the album release party for its first (and wjho knows, maybe only) album, See Red this coming Sunday at O’Gara’s.

See Red includes a bunch of songs – a couple of them going back to the 1980s (we’ve encountered some of them here), and a whole lot more that I wrote in the past year just to prove to myself that the whole thing wasn’t a nostalgia exercise.

Who knows – it may have been both.  I don’t know.  And I don’t care!

The Supreme Soviet of Love will go onstage at 8PM, and come hell or high water we’ll be out of there by 9PM;  you’ll be home in plenty of time for the 10PM evening news, or the 10PM rerun of Walking Dead if that’s what you prefer.

There’s a $5 cover – 100% of which goes to pay the rest of the band.  Me?  I’m hoping to sell CDs (and they’ll be on sale there, as well as available for download on iTunes, Amazon or wherever you like to get your music from.

And by the way, the opening act, going on stage at 6:30ish, will be…

…Elephant in the Room.  Yep.  I’ll be opening for myself.    That’s one way to save money!

I’ll be hanging out after loadout until they kick me out of there, for anyone who wants to talk politics, music, beer, food, or whatever you got.


So I hope, in an ideal world, you can make both shows; the Sundance could become a regular gig if we draw a lot of people, and of course the album release party has been on my bucket list since Ronald Reagan was president.

Either one would be great, though!

Saint Paul: Meet The New Mayor; Same As The Old City Council President

Melvin Carter won a slight majority of first-round ballots in the election for mayor of Saint Paul last night.

A long-time friend of this blog, who is a resident of Saint Paul, writes:

“White privilege elects next St Paul mayor”

That’s a headline that is accurate, but we won’t see. From what I know of Carter, and I know people who worked closely with him in his role of council member, he didn’t do a lot for his constituents. Black families in Frogtown felt disappointed by him, told his aide that they wouldn’t even vote for him in the special election when Carter left his council seat.

When he was on the council, Carter had a reputation for yelling “Off what” when Kathy Lantry – the then-president of the City Council – said “Jump”.  He wasn’t what you’d call a leader – which, when you’re dealing with DFL politics, isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

But it is what the DFL establishment wants in a city with a nominally strong-ish mayor system.

But, lots of white people supported Carter. They seemed to hand pick him as the token candidate of color who could represent those people in St Paul. They hand picked him as the candidate of color who would help bring whites and blacks together. “See? We are so progressive, we elected a black candidate for you. One whose father was a cop. Doesn’t that help with all your recent problems?”

There are many problems with that logic. Is this the candidate that Black people wanted? St Paul Black Lives Matter supported Pat Harris.

To be fair, they are surveys that show less than a third of African-Americans approve of BLM.

But the correspondent is right about the institutional virtue-signaling among honkey progressives that’s accompanied Carter’s election.  On a Saint Paul politics forum, one writer – a white woman with impeccable “progressive” credentials – wrote “I had personal friends who are Latino, Asian, Black, and White, all of whom voted for Melvin Carter”.

Can you imagine the howling if a white, Republican male had written “some of my best friends are minorities and voted for the minority?”

But, from what I know of Carter, he will look to the White people and ask, what do you want me to do? He will ask Chris Coleman to leave a check list so Carter can continue down the same path. Nothing that will help people in poverty in the city, though Carter will probably keep them in their place like Chris Coleman did. Which will help the Whites who elected him feel good about their decision.

It’s not that any of the candidates really had much different opinions, but at least some of them had independent thought and had the appearance of being able to make a decision based on reality versus the fantasy that all is well if we just declare the city to be liveable.

The PR bubble enveloping Saint Paul’s political class is impermeable to reality, reason and fact.

Of course, I have my own fantasy world. I keep thinking that at some point, the city will be degraded enough that a sensible, conservative candidate will bring out the angry voters in droves. And that a sensible conservative candidate will get fair media coverage so that those angry voters will be aware of the candidate.

I think that’s really the only hope for both cities.  it’s not a completely demented fantasy; it happend in NYC in the eighties with Giuliani (yes, he was a conservative, at least on money and crime), and in Jersey City in 1991 with Brett Schundler.

But like any mid-level addict, Saint Paul has a ways to fall before it hits bottom, yet.

Another Good Guy With A Gun?

Details are sparse as this is written, but it seems as if a citizen with a carry permit shot a would-be robber in downtown Saint Paul last night :

The shooting happened during an attempted robbery at Wacouta St and 5th St E in St. Paul just before 8 p.m.

Lindsers say the would-be robbery victim happened to be a conceal carry permit holder and shot him. He received non-life threatening injuries.

Was it a good shoot?  Well, if it was, we likely won’t hear any more about it.

Fingers crossed.

Sadly Disappointed

When I read the headline on this piece (“We Should Ban Cars From Big Cities. Seriously.”), the first thing that crossed my mind was “Oh, this could be a fiendishly brilliant parody of gun-grabber “arguments”.

Then I saw the masthead; BuzzFeed.  Which means nothing clever, fiendish or otherwise.

A gun lobbyist would typically step in right about now to ask whether those who demand gun control after mass shootings also want to ban cars after events like this week. To which I say: Hell yes. Cars don’t belong on the streets of big cities, and we should do everything in our power to get rid of them.

You can’t stop crazy. But you can reduce the number of people allowed to drive their 4,000 pound machines into city parks, along city beaches, past playgrounds, and alongside the sidewalks of the most pedestrian-packed places in the nation. If we banned cars from every city in the US tomorrow, we would stop vehicular terrorism overnight — and save thousands of lives.

The “writer” – Jessie Singer – fancies himself a transportation expert.  Clearly he’s not an expert in logistics; that Ethiopian coffee doesn’t arrive at his New York cafe on the backs of unicorns.  They arrive in commercial trucks.  And they likely will for a long, long time.

The trucks in New York and Nice, France were…what now?  A rental from a Home Depot or a Lowe’s ($19.95 an hour) in NYC; a regular delivery truck in Nice.

With experts like this, it’s hard to believe the left needs ignorant people.

Caste Forth

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Former professor at the United States Military Academy at West Point writes about the failure of leadership at the academy.

But enough hammering on the Army.  Let’s talk about the Navy, with two collisions this year, what’s happening to its leadership?

Makes one wonder: do we need a professional officer corps?  Would senior non-coms be enough to teach new recruits the basics, leaving strategy and tactics to a small group of experts?  Do we need military officers worrying about diversity and career opportunities for women – aren’t there enough people in academia, the media and politics doing that already?

Joe Doakes

It’s not an academic question.

Election Day

A longtime friend of this blog writes:

Every election, I hear people complaining that voting is on a Tuesday, that it should be on a weekend, that it should be a holiday. Of course, the people complaining also seem like the people who do find a way to get to the polls. And I always laugh at such a blatant example of how out of touch people like that really are.

For one, who is it that they believe can’t make it to the polls? I am guessing they envision people with minimum wage jobs who are afraid to speak up and actually take time to vote as is allowed by law, providing they are actually at work during voting hours.

But, how many of these minimum wage workers are also working on weekends, on holidays. Why is it that people think voting turn out would be any different? And we do have absentee voting as well as early voting now. Again, who is it that is not voting that would magically appear if voting day was a holiday or on a Saturday? Maybe the people who are not voting already understand that most of what happens in government screws them, insults them and says it’s for their own good. Why bother voting for that?

And on that note, happy voting day. I do know who I am voting for. But, I’m curious where to rank Nosemarie, Clu, and Puff this year for St Paul mayor?

I’ll be putting Clu at the top of my ballot.    Nose and Puff have both left is in the past 18 months, so they are no probably registered as DFL voters.

The Good Ol’ Guy With A Gun

One of the few bits of “good” news from the Sutherland Springs mcaassacre is that it was ended by a Good Guy with a Gun.

Details are coming out now – Stephen Willeford responded to the shooting with his AR15, fired a shot that apparently found a gap in Kelley’s body army, and seized the initiative:

Willeford is being hailed as a hero. His actions may well have stopped further bloodshed. Willeford is not a member of the church where the shooting took place, but he his daughter called him and told him there was a man in body armor shooting up the church

Willeford grabbed a rifle and answered the call. He found Kelley (above) outside of the church and shot him. The surprise caused Kelley to drop his rifle, and the shooter then ran to his own SUV and fled the scene.
Johnnie Langendorff was also responding. Langendorff picked up Willeford and the two gave chase. They followed Kelley in a high speed chase and eventually caused Kelley to lose control and run off the road. There, police say Kelley shot himself in the head.

This is, of course, exactly what law enforcement now knows about spree killers; resist them with lethal force, and they usually run, give up, kill themselves, or – as in this case – all three.

Just as we said.

 

 

Another Gun-Free Zone, Another Mass Shooting, And A Couple Good Guys With Guns

First things first:  Berg’s 18th Law is still in full effect;  it’s been mere hours since a man murdered 27 people at Sutherland Springs Baptist Church, near San Antonio; anything you read in the media will be crap.

One thing we do know?  Churches in Texas are “gun free zones”.  Nobody in that church was legally authorized to carry a firearm to defend themselves or their fellow parishioners.

Like nearly all mass shootings, it took place in a “gun free zone”.

Just like David Lillehaug and Nancy Nord Bence like it.

You post your property “no guns allowed?”  I’m not going there.  I’m not spending money, I’m not worshipping, I’m not saying “boo”.  I will consider them a threat to my safety.

No exceptions.

But Wait:  What’s this that the mainstream media is pretty roundly ignoring about the attack?  The shooter was himself shot by…

…an armed citizen:

Stephen Willeford managed to shoot Devin Kelley before jumping in another man’s truck and chasing him down, the Daily Mail reported.

Texas Department of Public Safety chief Freeman Martin said Willeford “grabbed his rifle and engaged the suspect” after Kelley left the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, where he opened fire with an assault rifle and killed 26 people.

And just as law enforcement teaches about mass shootings these days – if you show a mass shooter any resistance, they usually break off the attack, and either give up or kill themselves.

Kelley did both:

The man who killed at least 26 people in a Baptist church in a rural Texas town on Sunday died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, Wilson County Sheriff Joe Tackitt told CBS News in an interview on Monday morning.

Tackitt said gunfire was exchanged between the gunman and two armed citizens during a vehicle chase after the shootings.

The church was a gun-free zone – naturally.   But the rest of Texas was not.

UPDATE 2:  The USAF apparently neglected to report Kelley’s domestic conviction to the NICS – allowing him to buy the guns he used.

The Syndicate

Saint Paul reaches an “agreement” on Cuban North Korean Sopranos-style trash collection.

After 14 months of negotiations, seven contract proposals and 10 drafts, St. Paul officials say they have reached an agreement for coordinated collection with the city’s 15 private waste haulers. The city council will vote on the contract next Wednesday and set rates the following week.

“This contract allows us to provide residents with efficient and equitable service at reasonable and uniform rates,”

The “Reasonable and uniform rate” is, naturally, about $5 a month higher than I’ve been paying for the past five years.

Which will, of course, help pay the salary of at least another DFL-union-dues-paying city employee.

Mayor Chris Coleman said in a written statement. “It also ensures that all current haulers will maintain their market share, which was one of my top priorities. It is the right direction for garbage collection in Saint Paul.”

Bobby Stewart, head of operations with Highland Sanitation, said while he and other haulers had been opposed to coordinated collection, “it is a plan that we can live with and shouldn’t endanger our ability to survive as a business.”

City officials say the proposal incorporates most — though not all — of their 17 goals, from implementing predictable rates and services to reducing the number of trucks on city streets.

Crime is rising.  The city’s tax and employment bases are shrinking.  The achievement gap is among the worst in the nation; the public schools are collapsing.

But hey, we’ve got “coordinated” trash collection.

Saint Paul city government; stupid and worthless.