Interesting Times

It’s been a fairly violent year in Saint Paul.   This past weekend was worst of all; nine total shootings, with two dead:

On the upside, I haven’t noticed the metro’s anti-gun crones blaming the shooting wave on the law-abiding gun owner yet; partly, I suspect, because they’re still learning how to update blog posts, and partly because most Metro gun grabbers don’t know where Saint Paul is (outside the Griggs Building, anyway.  BTW, if you’ve ever asked yourself “why is there a Green Line stop at Fairview Avenue, it’s because the Griggs Building is the home for most of the Democrat, Union and “Social Justice” non-profits who provide most of the Green Line’s non-criminal riders).

The bad news?  It‘s still a DFL-run city:

Addressing the root causes of violence has also been important to the Dayton’s Bluff Community Council, said Deanna Abbott-Foster, the executive director. Sunday’s homicide occurred in Dayton’s Bluff.

“We’re hoping not just to respond to violent incidents, like a murder, where we all rise up and say, ‘Oh no!’ and then go back to business as usual,” Abbott-Foster said. “We’re hoping to … take a more holistic approach and ask, ‘What’s happening here?’ There’s a lot of poverty, a lot of unemployment, all kinds of issues that lend themselves to violent outbreaks.”

Yeah, focus on that.  That’ll work.

Because poverty causes crime, right?   Like, as P.J. O’Rourke wrote 25 years ago, “if you took Thurgood Marshall’s bank account away, he’d wind up selling crack at the Port Authority”.

No.  A society where there is motive, opportunity, and increasingly little consequence for dumb people to try to take what isn’t theirs is the problem.

And after years of dodging that, er, bullet, Saint Paul is arriving in the 21st century in the worst possible way.

Contextualized!

The Department of the Treasury has just tossed the slave-owning, Indian-genociding founder of the Democrat party off the $20 bill…

..and replaced him with a gun-toting Republican.

(No, it wasn’t my line:  it’s David “Iowahawk” Burge…

…and it was too good not to pay homage)

Real Americans: It’s Go Time

This has been a fairly quiet session as re gun control bills far.  With the passage of the committee deadline, no new bills can be brought to the floor -and no gun grabber bills survived committee.  As expected.

But that’s going to change next week.

While the committee deadline has passed, there is no deadline for amendments.  And Senator Latz is going to bring his Universal Registration amendment to the floor in coming weeks.

And to go along with that, he and the Bloomberg Travelling Circus are going to be having a pep rally (at taxpayer expense) next Tuesday; the technical term is “hearing”, but let’s cut the crap, it’s a pep rally.  They are going to try to do two things; whip up enthusiasm for Democrat candidates, and lay the groundwork for a bigger, more-coordinated gun-grab push next session.

So the Good Guys need you, the Real Americans, to turn out.

Details:

Tuesday, April 26
8:30AM
Senate Office Building, Room
95 University Avenue W. (Corner of Rice and University)
St. Paul, MN 55155

Yep.  8:30AM on a workday.  Latz and the Bloomberg know as well as you do that gun-controllers don’t have jobs; they are mostly layabout trust-fund wives from Kenwood and Crocus Hill, hipster “writers” from lower Northeast, and community organizers who get paid to be there.   They know that you – the Second-Amendment supporting Real Americans – spend your mornings getting your kids to school; by 8:30, you’ve been at work for a while already.

They’re counting on it.

Tickets are first-come, first-serve basis, before 8:30 AM.    Some groups of Real Americans will be lining up at 7AM, when the building opens to the public.

I’m going to try to be there.  I hope you can too.

 

Wages Of “Democratic” Socialism

Sanders campaign tries to get a restraining order against a parody:

Yesterday, April 14th, the Bernie Sanders campaign sent a cease and desist letter claiming that I am unlawfully selling my parodies because they used the likeness of the official Bernie Sanders for President logo in this shirt.

Here’s the satirical image (with a click-through to the site where you can buy this samizdat classic):

What next:  Book-Berning?

Congratulations Are In Order!

To:  Mike Mullen, City Pages
From:  Mitch Berg, Uppity Peasant
Re:  Best Wishes

Mr. Mullen,

As we’re coming up on high school graduation, I can only wish you the best in your future endeavors.  Hopefully your college studies will lead you to an adult life that you find fulfilling and exciting.

Reach for the stars.

Mitch Berg
Uppity Peasant

PS:  I’m assuming you’re a high school kid who’s interning at the CP based on the tone, style and quality of “journalism” in this piece, which reads like something from a click-bait site.  If I’m mistaken, and you’re an actual “reporter” and “writer”, I apologize.  I mean, basically. 

That is all.  

All Is Proceeding As Foreseen

When President Obama threw out the welcome mat for the Castros, essentially giving them the legitimacy they’ll need to live out their lives and likely their kids’ lives in complete control and obscene wealth with no more American uppityness about “human rights” and “democracy” but all ready to allow American companies (with political clout and who are willing to play ball with the Castros on the Castros’ terms) to make money in Cuba (and sharing a lot of it with the regime, replacing all that Venezuelan and Soviet money they’ve been missing), I said that it’d be a terrible time to be a dissident; like if Ronald Reagan had given the Soviets and General Jaruzelski the money, political cover and permission to send Lech Walesa to prison unimpeded.

And that’s what’s happening.  Worse, the feds would seem to be doing the Castros’ work for them, here in the US.

Sánchez is a well-known activist in South Florida, who also has staged a number of hunger strikes to bring attention to various Cuba-related causes. In recent days, he had begun a protest campaign against what he considered a discriminatory act by Carnival Corp., which is abiding by a Cuban ban on allowing Cuban-American passengers aboard its Fathom cruise line sailing to Havana on May 1. Cuban law prohibits Cuban-born individuals from traveling to Cuba by sea.

Sánchez characterized the letter as “political pressure” by the Obama administration to try to thwart his plans for the flotilla and other future actions to promote democracy in Cuba.

I’m so proud to be an American today.  

Appetite For Destruction

Restaurants – I’m talking the high-end, “acclaimed” places that vie for foodie critics’ affirmation – are dropping like, er, flies lately.

At the risk of sounding dramatic, Dara Moskowitz Grumdahl is asking if we’re in the midst of an independent-restaurant massacre in the core of downtown Minneapolis.

Brasserie Zentral. Foreign Legion. Vincent. Masa. Solera. Workshop at Union.

The list of critically acclaimed eateries that have closed up shop in the state’s biggest city continues to grow.

Wonder why that is?

Two years ago, we had Governor Dayton’s sons asking a return of the old “tip credit”, to offset the effect of the hike in the minimum wage.  They are certainly not the only ones hurting.

And I’ve heard – very, very off the record – that as restaurants get big and successful enough, and edge closer and closer to that magic “50 employee” mark, whereupon they are considered big businesses, required to provide Obamacare for their employees, the amount of money it’ll take to actually keep the business running becomes utterly untenable.

In the link above…:

Moskowitz Grumdahl, a senior editor for Mpls.St.Paul Magazine, joined MPR News host Steven John to talk more about what’s behind this trend, how St. Paul is benefiting from it and what downtown Minneapolitans can do about it.

Saint Paul isn’t benefitting.  Restaurants are closing here, too.

Expect to see a DFL proposal to prop up restaurants that are “too tasty to fail”.

The Slow Advance Of Progress

Last week, Mississippi became the ninth “Constitutional Carry” state – allowing any citizen who is legally entitled to carry a gun to carry, without need for a state permit (which was the system in Minnesota until 1974, by the way).

And in the wake of that move, North Dakota legislators sound like they’re maneuvering to make the state the tenth state to not require law-abiding citizens to jump through hoops to exercise their Constitutional rights.

Rob Port:

I spoke with Becker about the legislation last night, and he said it’s an important issue for our state.

“A Constitutional Carry law removes the restrictions that are an impediment to ‘the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed’ clearly stated in the Second Amendment,” he told me.

If Constitutional Carry passes, and when – not if – it is a complete success, it will be much harder for Minnesota’s pro-dictatorship groups (ProtectMN, Moms Want Action, Everytown For Big Brother) to yap about it.

 

Today’s Real American Hero

Missouri Democrat introduces an amendment to “prove a point” about the “absurdity” of open carry…

…and loses track of time, and is unable to withdraw the amendment.

Rep Deb Lavender (D) introduced an amendment to a bill dealing with open carry and [concealed carry permittees]. Her amendment would open the capitol building up to lawful carry of firearms for every lawful citizen rather than just for the elected officials.

I think she was about to withdraw the amendment during her closing argument when she talked her way through the 1 minute limit for her closing speech and the speaker slammed the gavel and opened the board for her amendment to be voted on.

SHE TALKED SO LONG SHE RAN OUT OF TIME TO WITHDRAW HER AMENDMENT.

The amendment passed with about 115 voting YES and now the proposed bill is an even stronger 2nd amendment bill because of her amendment.”

Which passed.  

Order

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

There are 300,000,000 people in the United States. Each year, about 300 men complete sex reassignment surgery to become women. Real trans aren’t all around us, they’re a one-in-a-hundred-million rarity. The odds against a genuine trans person wanting to shower with the girls in the local high school are right up there with winning the lottery.

North Carolina legislators can do math. They know the vast, overwhelming, majority of young men wanting to shower with the girls are not trans, they’re the same kind of guys who’d drill a hole through the wall to peek into the girls shower to see naked chicks. The legislators decided girls’ privacy was more important than giving boys a thrill so they banned boys from showering with girls in public high schools. Liberals are losing their minds because of a possible insult to a hypothetical victim who conceivably might someday exist, against those one-in-a-hundred-million odds.

It is impossible to run a nation on the basis of “Nobody can ever be offended.” That is not a rational way to structure orderly society. The North Carolina way makes perfect sense. Which is why Liberals can’t understand it.

Joe Doakes

It’s like being governed by fourth-graders.  “I don’t care about the rules, I want what I want!”

The Red Line

Clearly, all of America’s school problems have been solved.

No, we know this, because thousands of American teachers will be taking time off during the school  year to attend a conference on “white privilege”.

The annual event is aimed at promoting the theory of White Privilege – that American society is hopelessly stacked against minorities and the only way to fix the system is for white people to acknowledge their immense “privilege” and repent.

Which brings up the two questions:

  1. What is “white privilege”
  2. What is it that you’d have us do about it.

The first?  Even asking will get you called a racists (as I found out on one particularly bobbleheaded neighborhood Facebook forum a few weeks back).   But one BLM activist defined it for me pretty well, last summer:  it’s being able to go into a room and not have everyone wondering if you’re “one of the good ones”.

Which sounds, to me, like freedom and equality.  Which may be a “privilege”, but it’s also supposed to be one of this nation’s ideals.

As opposed to this next bit (emphasis added):

“Our vision is to build a community committed to dismantling white privilege, white supremacy and oppression, every day, everywhere,” wrote Eddie Moore Jr., founder and president of “The Privilege Institute,” which organizes the event.

If “privilege” is equality, freedom, justice, and being seen as a person rather than a label, then you’ll “dismantle” it over my dead body.  You don’t gain freedom and equality by taking others’ away.  The Germans didn’t get any more free by killing Jews; the Klan got no more justice by lynching black people.

Repent, my ass.  It’s time to spread “privilege” around to all races, classes, orientations, religions, humans.

If this is the place where the civil war starts, then lock and m********ng load.

Rhetorically speaking, of course.

In The Closet

While Hollywood (a wholly owned subsidary of the American Left) toes the left’s designated political line, they get almost…conservative, sometimes, when the proverbial chips are down:

On some issues, Hollywood can be downright right-wing. From the value of guns in The Walking Dead to the honor of police in countless dramas to the importance of family in most sitcoms, there is a lot more conservatism, broadly understood, on TV than conservatives or liberals ever notice.

And so it is with abortion. With the exception of Maude (an awful left-wing 1970s TV show)  and some “edgy” HBO series, there have been no major sitcoms in which a character has had an abortion.

I’d add Neve Campbell’s “Julia Salinger” from Party of Five which, it’s alarming to note, was 22 years ago.

Why? Well, one reason is abortions aren’t funny. There’s no reason to write a storyline in which a character gets pregnant only to decide later not have a baby. That’s not a punch line, it’s a tragedy. Even the very liberal Mindy Kaling, star and producer of The Mindy Project, says the show won’t touch the issue of abortion — and Kaling plays a gynecologist.

And so while politics is downstream of culture, at least some part of the culture business finds it in its interest to remember that most people are, broadly, conservative.

Not Dumb

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

A few years ago, Ramsey County Sheriff Fletcher got in hot water for using the list of carry permit holders to raise money for private charities. Lots of things wrong with that idea and he deserved to be rebuked.

But the notion of the Sheriff’s department working with carry permit holders still intrigues me. Could there be a useful public safety function?

Some law enforcement officials worry that the shooting skills of civilian carry permit holders are not up to snuff. Hell, I’m sure they’re not – my wife and I have our permits and in good light, wide awake, at a motionless target 15 feet away . . . we’re deadly. But public ranges won’t allow low-light shooting, barricades, moving targets so there’s no good way for civilians to improve their skills for a real-life situation.

The Sheriff has access to a shooting range, range safety officers and shooting instructors. His deputies have to pass realistic qualification courses every so often – why not open them up to civilians, on a voluntary basis?

What if the Sheriff offered “refresher” classes to carry permit holders? For a nominal fee and a box of your own ammo, you could bring your carry gun to the range, shoot a realistic course of fire and have your shooting critiqued by an instructor. For some of us, of course, it would simply confirm that we are, in fact, the World’s Best Shots. But for those few others whose skills aren’t quite up to snuff, it might be a useful wake-up call.

Yes, it would cost the Sheriff some overtime, some targets, some potential liability if someone gets hurt. Fees might cover some of that. The program would generate publicity that the Sheriff is doing something to make the streets safer by helping carry permit holders make themselves safer (the anti-gun crowd will hate it, but they’re like Mikey, they hate everything, so that’s not a big minus).

There are potential drawbacks. If I shoot the Sheriff’s range and fail, then kill some “youth” in Frogtown, it’s going to look bad for the Sheriff (why didn’t you pull his permit) and also for me (you knew you shouldn’t be carrying). If I shoot the Sheriff’s range and pass, then kill some “youth” in Frogtown, it’s going to look bad for the Sheriff (teaching crackers to kill youths). Okay, so the Sheriff’s got a tough job and why make it worse? Except in some cases, maybe he can make it better? Maybe one or two of those folks will realize they shouldn’t be carrying on the street and will leave the gun at home? Or maybe we’ll get the training we need to be safe when carrying on the streets?

Joe Doakes

If a DFL controlled County sheriffs office were to develop such a level of common sense, it would be a very good sign indeed.

History Repeats

The most dangerous thing in the world to be, for the past 70 years, has been a “moderate Muslim”.

It’s been very much in the interest of every wave of Arab and Muslim radical – from the grand mufti of Jerusalem, through the PLO, to Al Qaeda and ISIS – to make the Muslim in the street afraid not to get out-of-the-way, if not overtly join them.

Which brings us to this.

Moscow on the Mediterranean

Marseilles was awash in pomp and circumstance on April 16th, 1916.  Military bands played marching songs and patriotic music, as throngs of French citizens flocked to the waterfront, eager to meet the arriving vessel the Himalaya.

Thousands of wide-eyed young men trampled off the causeway, many with musty uniforms and salt-corroded brass – remnants of the group’s more than two-month journey to the Western Front.  While all of these young men had been born and raised in an urban, industrialized environment, for most of them it was their first trip to a foreign country.  The experience was overwhelming for men who just months earlier hadn’t even been in military service, and were now showered with attention from local French dignitaries and beautiful French women.

Only these weren’t French soldiers.  Or British.  Or even colonial troops from one of the Western Allies.  The nearly 9,000 men marching through Marseilles were the soldiers of the Russian 1st Special Brigade – the first of nearly 50,000 Russian troops who would serve on the Western Front.

The Russians Are Coming! – the arrival in France.  They had gone East from St. Petersburg, making an arduous two-month journey out of the Pacific port of Vladivostok to France

The vast expanse of the Eurasian Steppe had long conjured the image that within the Russian Empire were multitudes of men ready, willing, and able to serve the Tsarist military machine.  The “limitless” manpower of Russia had been so ingrained in Western popular opinion, that it came to be believed as well by the country’s ruling elite.  Despite the monstrous losses incurred on the Eastern Front in just a year and a half, few in Moscow, London or Paris feared that Russia would – or could – reach a breaking point when it came to fielding an army.    Continue reading

I Heard It On The NARN

Here’s the details on the Salvation Army’s “Bed and Bread” campaign. As of Tuesday, you can also call 651-746-3517.  All donations through the end of April get matched 100%.  You also get a $25-off certificate for a MyPillow – one of the sponsors of this campaign.

My “Conservatism and Springsteen” series.  It’s in blog order – it begins at the bottom.  Just so you know.

And of course,

On The NARN Side

Today, the Northern Alliance Radio Network – America’s first grass-roots talk radio show – is on the air! I will be on live from 1-3PM today!

  • So much news this week – it’s gonna be hard to pick a topic.   But I will!
  • Julie Borgen joins us to talk about the Salvation Army’s “Bed and Bread” event.

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

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

Join us!

The ACLU Vs. The First Amendment, Freedom, and “Choice”

So if you take the idea of “choice” on moral issues  – like, say, abortion – seriously, then people are supposed to be able to make “choices” about participating in the practice.

Because the First Amendment protects freedom of conscience!

And the ACLU protects the First Amendment.  Right?

Well

A federal judge just tossed the ACLU’s suit against a chain of Catholic hospitals, because he found that the plaintiff’s claim that women were “harmed” by having to look for, y’know, a non-Catholic hospital to get an abortion was specious:

On Monday, weeks before oral arguments were scheduled to take place, Judge Gershwin E. Drain of the U.S. district court for Eastern Michigan dismissed the suit, calling the ACLU’s claims “dubious.” It’s tempting to follow suit and dismiss from our minds the agenda underlying the ACLU’s legal action. But we can’t afford to do that.

Emphasis added:

Think about it: The ACLU argued that a hospital should require its doctors and nurses to perform abortions even if the hospital recognizes that a new human life begins at conception and holds that the moral weight of abortion is no less than that of taking the life of a born person. The playing field is shifting under our feet. This lawsuit wasn’t about “choice” at all; it was about ensuring that medical professionals can’t act on their beliefs if they clash with assumptions that are politically in vogue. Rather than invoke the old mantra that abortion is between a woman and her doctor, the ACLU did the opposite, arguing that the government should be involved in decisions for abortion by stipulating that others participate in them.

The goal, of course, is to make abortion safe, legal, and enforceable under thoughtcrime statutes.

Thanks!

It was another successful pledge week!

As I’ve said many, many times; I’d do this blog for free, and for an audience of five a day – which is how it started. The fact that I have a decent-sized audience just makes it more fun. The fact that so many of you chip in a buck or two to support me in this effort, on top of all that, is both humbling and exhilarating.

Thanks, all!




More information about SITD and the Pledge Drive.

Home To Roost

Ten years ago, the transit-happy left pointed to the DC Metro as an example of how urban mass transit could be done.

In particular, they said?  It was less of a money pit than anticipated.

Unmentioned (except from the right):  they shaved money by deferring maintenance.  Equipment and facilities that were supposed to have a thirty-year service life has been soldiering on, deferring maintance, for forty years.

And it’s starting to cause problems; a series of public meltdowns including a train that spent an hour stuck under the Potomac river yesterday:

A female passenger on the disabled train told us she will no longer use Metro after this incident.

“Say no to Metro,” she said. “I haven’t done it in a while and to be on a brand new car – no … I got better ways to go. I’ve got two feet. I trust those better than I do Metro.”

Mass transit.  It’s great, provided you actually believe those who claim to know better than you actually know better than you do.