Fall Weiss

It was seventy years ago this morning that Germany invaded Poland, launching World War II in Europe – beginning what was, in a sense,the end of a war that’d begun 25 years earlier, taken a 21 year break, and then re-ignited, killing tens of millions of people directly on the battlefield and, in ways never before seen in human history, off of it.
In another sense, it began the final act of the Old World – the world of European dominance, of its kingdoms and alignments and customs defining “civilization” for the rest of the world – and was the beginning of the world we have today, a world who’s denouement is at this moment very much in play.

But that’s a story we’ll recap in seventy more years, God willing.

———-

In reading the story of the German Blitzkrieg into Poland most of my cognitive life, I became fascinated with the history of Poland – or, really, of all of the smaller European states that Hitler swallowed up.  A lot of legends sprang up around each of these nations and their record during the awful year that followed the invasion of Poland.

I would like to address some of them.

———-

Poland started the war with a couple of strikes against it.

For starters, its terrain is just not defendable.

All of its major cities sit on a broad, flat plain, cut by few rivers (whose banks are, largely, not major obstacles to much of anything).  The road from the German or Russian border to the capitol in Warsaw, or its industrial heartland around Katowice/Sosnowiec, or its intellectual and cultural heart in Krakow has no more physical speed bumps than a drive from Fargo to Grand Forks.

And while Poland knew very well that it was surrounded by a couple of rapacious dictatorships who, as they had through all of history, meant it nothing but ill, and they did their best to prepare for eventualities, they did something that’s all too familiar to modern IT executives; at a time in history when military technology was evolving at a pace that the world had never before seen (and in many respects hasn’t seen since), the Poles, like the French, laid their cards on the table early, standardizing and mass-producing equipment that turned out to be obsolete a mere 5-10 years after it rolled off the assembly line.  The Polish Air Force was mass-producing the Pzl fighter plane and the Karas fighter-bomber at a time when the Germans had just started developing the planes with which they’d launch the war, the Bf109 fighter, the Ju87 Stuka dive bomber, the He111/Do17/Ju88 bombers.

(The French military, like the British navy, likewise bet long on mid-thirties technology that served it less effectively than later designs). Likewise, they built thousands of tiny, two-man machine-gun armed “tankettes”, state of the art in 1933 but useless as anything but mobile machine guns in 1939 against the German tanks that were just going up on the drawing boards.

By 1939, Poland was just starting to produce the excellent “7TP” tanks – as good as any German Panzer

…but it was too little and too late.

To help make up for that, the Poles had a few advantages; the Air Force’s pilots were spectacularly well-trained; indeed, the Polish pilots who escaped after the Blitz to the UK, and got to fly first-rate modern fighters like the Hurricane and the Spitfire in 1940 turned out to be among the RAF’s highest scorers in the Battle of Britain.

In the days before radar, they were supported by a large, comprehensive ground observer network that did a surprisingly good job of detecting German air raids and vectoring Polish fighters onto the target.  The Polish Navy, in contrast (and as an ironic result of its relatively lower standing at budget time) standardized rather later, and went to war with some of the finest equipment in all of Europe; the Blyskawica-class destroyers and Orzel-class submarines (both built in Holland) were among the best anywhere, certainly outclassing anything in the German or British navies.  And, since they were standardized late and in dire  economic times, there were exactly two of each in service.

The Poles had one other thing; centuries of vassaldom to the Germans and Russians.  Other than the brief Republic of Krakow in the mid-1700’s, and the 21 years of independence (marked by a war for survival against the Soviets), Poland had been under one boot or another since the end of the Jagiellonian era. The Poles wanted their freedom.  And even though the government in 1939 was at least partly a dictatorship – a response to a paralyzing indecision in the face of both the Great Depression and the gathering threat from east and west – Poland was an outpost of small-“l” liberal sentiment.  It also built an intellgience service that, like that of many counteries surrounded by enemies (see Israel), disproportionally excellent; indeed, Polish Intelligence helped with one of the great coups of the war; it was the Poles that made the first inroads into breaking Germany’s “Enigma” encryption system.  The Polish mathematicians fled to the UK, and joined with the British thinkers at Bletchley Park to complete the job.  The fact that the Allies could read Germany’s “secret” transmissions in near-real-time (by cryptology standards) was one of the key factors in winning the war; without that, the U-Boat offensive in 1941-43 would have likely succeeded in starving Britain to the negotiating table with Hitler.

Unlike France – misconceptions about whom we’ll address on their own 70th anniversary, in about eight months – this gave Poland a deep will to fight.

It wasn’t enough, of course – but it came a lot closer to evening things up than contemporary propaganda credits them.
———-

Two myths grew up around the German invasion of Poland; that the Polish Air Force was destroyed on the ground in the opening minutes of the campaign, and that the Polish Army’s cavalry was such a medieval throwback, it resorted to charging at tanks with lances.

Both are propaganda myths spread by the Germans and parrotted, in a story all too familiar to modern consumers of news, by an incurious, uninformed Western news media.

———-

The Polish Air Force was not caught on the ground.  Far from it; they dispersed away from their major airfields, according to pre-war plans that recognized not only the Luftwaffe’s superiority in numbers and equipment – by this point, German bombers could outrun Polish fighter planes – but Poland’s few aces in the hole.

And when the German bomber streams started appearing over Poland, the observers saw and heard them, and phoned in the information to HQ, who vectored Poland’s old fighters into position to do the only thing they realistically could against planes that were faster than their own; wait in ambush over the targets, take the most direct approach they could to their targets, and fight like hell.

And they did.  The Polish Air Force shot down over 230 German planes during September of 1939, about 250 more were damaged, many of them beyond repair.  The Lotnictwo Wojskowe lost about 100 shot down or otherwise destroyed by enemy action, with about as many being lost as the pace of the German advance, and later the Russian invasion, made repairs impossible and swallowed up the warning network and, finally, teh airfields themselves.

Following the goverment’s instructions, as the fight in central Poland became impossible, they retreated to the mountains in the south, and after the surrender made their way, by air or car or foot, first to Romania, then through Africa or Iran or the Mediterranean, then to France (where many fought with the French air force) and finally Britain or the USSR.

———-

The other legend – the horse-cavalry charges with bugles blowing and lances waving – is more pernicious.  It’s a propaganda legend, of course, one started as a German reponse to a Polish tactical victory.

In the opening days of the war, Poland had plenty of horse cavalry; they were in the process of trying to retired horses in favor of tanks and armored cars, but the Depression had slowed the process (as it did, by the way, in the US, whose cavalry was still largely horse-mounted in 1939 as well).  They didn’t fight in the classic sense of the term; think of them as infantry on horses, using the greater mobility of being mounted to help cover more ground, but dismounting to fight on foot when the action started.  And while they had lances, they were for ceremonial occasions only; they weren’t carried in the field.  There was never an intention to fight the way cavalry had always fought – the saber charges, the bugles, the mounted dashes.

Usually.

In the opening days of the war, a squadron of Pomeranian cavalry under Colonel Julian Filipowicz, patrolling in the corridor below Gdansk (Danzig, at the time), encountered a German infantry battalion which, tired from advancing and from a brisk fight with a Polish infantry unit across some nearby railroad tracks, was resting in an open field.

Col. Filipowicz’ unit – about 300 cavalrymen – while scouting the area, found the Germans.  As is so often the deciding factor in modern war, they saw the Germans first, and were able to act accordingly.  They deployed some modern weapons – Browning M2 machine guns, first built in 1918 and still found on every US Army tank today – to back up a charge led by some very old weapons, the cavalry saber.  Filipowicz, seeing an unprepared foe, ordered a charge.

And it cut the German battalion to pieces, killing dozens, wounding hundreds, and leaving the battalion combat-ineffective for quite some time.

As the Poles completed several passes, a unit of German armored cars happened on the scene, and turned their cannon and machine guns on the Poles, causing heavy losses and sending them back into the woods, to fight another day.

German photographers, travelling with a group of tanks that responded to the debacle, photographed a number of the dead Polish troopers alongside the Panzers.  The German propagandists spread the report –  the Poles were stuck in the medieval era! – as a morale booster.  And the tall tale, rather than the story of the boundless courage of Filipowicz’ men, stuck.

———-

It wasn’t the last bloody nose the Poles gave the Germans.  When the Germans pushed the Poles back to Warsaw, they tried to storm the city using the same tanks that had led them across the North Polish Plain.  The Sixth Panzer Division was ordered to attack the city.

The tanks moved into the warren of streets that made up Warsaw’s western suburbs…

…and got swallowed in a morass of antitank guns, molotov cocktails (which wouldn’t earn their name until the following winter, from the Finns, about whom more in a couple of months) and booby traps.

The Sixth Panzers lost sixty tanks – about a third of its armored strength – in the first day of its assault, a catastrophic hit.

Warsaw would have to fall the old-fashioned way – through infantrymen advancing from house to house.

———-

Or through treachery.

Stalin, as part of his temporary alliance with Hitler, invaded Poland about this time, destroying whatever hope for resistance that the Poles might have had.  It was all she wrote.

Oh, they fought on anyway; tens of thousands of Poles went to the UK or the USSR to carry on the war; hundreds of thousands more fought with the various guerrilla groups, the Armia Krajowa (Home Army) which hampered German movements throughout the war and in 1944, as the Soviets approached, seized control of much of Warsaw (and were beaten down as the Soviets stopped in the city’s eastern suburbs and refused to cross the Vistula River).  The Poles, realizing their excellent but tiny navy had no chance, ordered their most modern ships – their destroyers and submarines to feel to the UK in the opening hours of the war; Orzel, brand new out of the shipyard, ran to Sweden, and was interned (placed under arrest, essentially).  The crew escaped, and stole the sub from the docks; the Swedes had seized all the boat’s charts and navigational gear, so it sailed across the Baltic, and through the treacherous Skagerrak, and across the North Sea by guess and by gosh.

The Poles had scant hope holding against Hitler from the west; against both of their hereditary enemies, they had none.  The clock ran out fast on the Poles.  The nation’s story was one of the great tragedies of the past 100 years; winning their freedom, having it seized, held hostage by one dictator and then another for two generations.

It’s also one of the great inspirations; after all that, they took their freedom back…

….and with it catalyzed a shot at freedom for the rest of the Second World.

Eggs

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Mentally ill man goes on stabbing rampage. Bystanders corral him with folding chairs and milk crates. Why not just shoot him?
Oh. It’s Australia. Guns are banned. Law abiding citizens are defenseless.

Joe Doakes

Not only does Big Left not care – they’ve got their armed guards, they’re good, thanks – it’s a net gain. All that viral video of people impotently trying to swat at a guy with a knife, an axe or a sword is so funny, dude.

As If On Cue

Amazingly enough, as the depravity of rank and file DFLers makes the news (a little) and the media is slowly shamed into covering the “irregularities” in Ilhan Omar’s personal and political life…

…voila! A death threat!

Minnesota Congresswoman Ilhan Omar faces a new complaint alleging she used campaign money to pursue a romantic affair.
That happened while Omar released information Wednesday about a death threat. The written threat says Omar “won’t die alone,” and it would likely happen at the Minnesota State Fair.
Sources tell WCCO it’s the reason the Democratic congresswoman didn’t give advance notice of where she’d be when she visited the fair on opening day.

Rep. Omar released on Twitter Wednesday afternoon immediately following a tense series of exchanges with reporters as she left a town hall meeting.

First things first: don”t be threatening your opponents.

But I wonder, if you asked republican state legislators, especially the women, how many death threats they get as a matter of course?

I mean, I’ve gotten death threats. I know conservative female bloggers who get some of the most vile, ghastly threats you can imagine – and some you probably can’t.

Do Congresspeople take death threats seriously? Sure they do – but for every James Hodgkinson, there have got to be 10,000 cramks who make threats because it gives them the illusion of having some power in this world.

I’m going to speculate that Ilhan Omar has a stack of death threats – and so does pretty much every pol that gets any national attention. The fact that this one just happens to have been received when the local media is finally starting to pay attention to the many charges building up against Omar, and that it happens to mark off all of the DFL‘s checkboxes, just seems a little too perfect, doesn’t it?

Almost as if William Davis or Matt Roznowsk wrote it – or at least touched it up.

I said “almost”. Perish the thought.

Great Job, Mel

St Paul has a resiliency officer, socialized trash collection, and bike lanes in places where bikes rarely if ever go.

What does st paul not have?

Well, starting next month, a Walmart. And the 333 jobs that go with it:

“The decision is based on several factors including the store’s overall performance,” Tiffany Wilson, a Walmart spokeswoman, said in a statement.

The Walmart Supercenter slated to close is located near the Snelling Avenue inters

The store first opened in 2004. About 333 employees will lose their jobs, the company told a state agency.

Walmart, and retail in general, have been shrinking. But the fact that this store is one of 20 being closed this year out of Walmart’s current inventory of 4000 stores, Should tell us something.

And just you watch  the Merriam Park crones and cronies who call the shots in St. Paul will call this a Good Thing.

Land Of The Free And Home Of The Flaming Hot And Dusty

America asks “when will Hollywood make movies about things that genuinely matter to us?”.

Hollywood answers; a biopic about the “only in America” origin story of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, and the broom-to-mahogany-row story of its inventor – directed Eva Longoria:

Longoria is officially attached to direct Flamin’ Hot, a biopic about Richard Montanez, the man who the invented iconic snack, Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. DeVon Franklin (Breakthrough) will produce through a deal at Fox, and the film is slated to be a Fox Searchlight title.
Flamin’ Hot tells the story of Richard and Judy Montanez. The son of a Mexican immigrant, Richard rose from humble beginnings, working as a janitor at Frito Lay when he developed the idea for Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, inspired by the flavors of his community. The spicy snack (and twist on an already popular brand) not only revitalized Frito Lay, but disrupted the food industry and created a pop culture phenomenon.

Is it a move to virtue signal to the Latino community?

Do Cheetos leave dust on your fingers and everything else they touch? Of course it is. The devil is in the execution – and given that it’s Hollywood, the odds are overwhelming that it’s gonna be crap (if it’s ever released).

But one can hope. The world could use a good ” this is what America is all about” story.

How To Win “Prog” Friends And Influence Virtue-Signaling People

CONSERVATIVE TALK RADIO HOST: “I am a conservative talk radio host. Let’s discuss the issues of the world”

“PROGRESSIVES”: “We want you to die in a grease fire, but only after you watch your family get eaten by mice”

CONSERVATIVE TALK RADIO HOST: “But I’m running against the president in a Quixotic campaign/ratings stunt”

“PROGRESSIVES”: “Even though we couldn’t define “conservatism” correctly if you pelted us with stacks of $50 bills, we declare you to be a leader of conservative thought!”

(And SCENE)

Cold War II

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

President Reagan won the Cold War.  The Soviet Union collapsed.  He did it by ramping up American military spending, knowing the Soviets would have to try to keep up.  They spent themselves into oblivion.
America is finally waking up to the fact it has been engaged in a Cold War with China for years, but we weren’t really fighting, perhaps because some of our leading lights were making a ton of money off China (looking at you, Joe Biden). 
President Trump is fighting the Chinese Cold War using tariffs.  And it’s working.
Earlier this year, China threatened to fight back by dumping US debt, which they claimed would destroy our economy.  It wouldn’t and both sides know it, that’s a bluff and dis-information for Democrats to use to beat Trump for fighting a war they don’t want him to win.  At worst, the US would repudiate the debt, cleaning up our books and leaving China with no leverage and no asset.
Now, President Trump has exercised his power to ban certain companies from doing business with Chinese.
Here’s the quandary for Democrats:  do they acknowledge the war and help the President fight it?  Or do they bring down the President to install their own party which will rule over the rubble of the country they sold out?
Joe Doakes

The answer to Joe’s last question? They go for power. Whatever that means.

An Experiment

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

White Supremacist is the epithet du jour, which Liberals paste everywhere as gleefully and randomly as my grand-daughter with a new sticker book.
But what does it mean, White Supremacist? Traditionally, it was the belief that White people were superior to other races, that something in their genetic make up or possibly in their culture, made them capable of achieving more success for more people than any other race or culture on Earth.
Nowadays, of course, such a belief would be a hate crime against humanity. It’s unthinkable to suggest that races or cultures differ (or that they even exist at all). But if what if the belief was correct? Can you prove it’s not?
Suppose you treated it as a science problem and tried to apply the scientific method? There are two possible causes – race and culture. Limit one variable at a time.
Hypothesis: Western Civilization has produced more success measured by greater wealth, better health, wider spread learning, and more freedom for the people living under it, than any other culture has produced for its own people, in the history of the world.
How would you falsify the proposition? What evidence would you seek?
If you couldn’t falsify the proposition, that wouldn’t prove it’s true. Maybe you just didn’t find the correct evidence. But if you gave it an honest effort and still couldn’t prove the claim was false, then shouldn’t you concede the possibility that the claim could be true?
Should speaking the truth be a hate crime against humanity?
Joe Doakes

It’d be an interesting experiment on its own – and moreso to combine it with observing the reactions of people reading the thesis.

Remember – “Western Civilization” isn’t inextricably “White”. There was no virtue specific to caucasian genetics that made Western Civilization happen, any more than black or Asian genetics made it impossible. It was a combination of social factors that made improving the human condition a virtue, made improvement of technology desirable and profitable, and made social self-examination the vogue for at least a while. Africans can do democracy and free markets – check out Botswana, which has been a constitutional democracy since independence, and stable and prosperous, especially by sub-saharan standards, to boot.

Had Judeo-Christianity’s ennoblement of the individual mixed with a series of tribes that valued individual merit over “will to power” and heredity in, say, India or Sub-Saharan Africa or China, and Northern Europe remained mired in Dark-Ages-style warlordism, it’s entirely likely caucasoid citizens of a free, prosperous, democratic India or Nigeria or China could be barbering about “brown supremacy” today.

Our “Elites” Strike Again

California professor hears that Garden Restaurants has contributed to the Trump campaign.

Tweets demanding a boycott of Olive Garden.

https://www.thecollegefix.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/Screen-Shot-2019-08-26-at-10.20.59-AM.png

Demand goes viral among “progs” who would normally never be caught dead at an Olive Garden anyway.

Unknown, apparently, to that particular member of the “elite”: Olive Garden is in no way relatecd to “Garden Restaurants”.

Also an apparent surprise: corporations can’t donate directly to presidential campaigns.

Hate Criminal

They finally have a “person of interest” in last week’s sexual assault of a MNGOP booth volunteer:

The image released above is of a woman considered a “person of interest who may have been involved in a sexual assault” at the booth.
As reported earlier this week, the victim, an unidentified woman, reported being groped by another woman after a “verbal disagreement regarding political affiliation.”
A State Fair police spokesperson at the time confirmed they’d received a report of a volunteer being groped “over the clothes.”
The perpetrator is described as a white woman in her 30s, brunette and 5 feet 4 inches tall. 
Anyone with information about the woman pictured should call the Minnesota State Fair Police Department at 651-288-4500.

Let’s see: homely, visibly clenched with rage and deeply unfulfilled in life, with visible evidence of transferring all the energy people used to put into family, faith, community and career into political ire, doubtless alone in life and monomaniacally focused on her hatred for everyone that’s different from her?

In this town, that doesn’t narrow down the suspect pool all that much.

Dissociation?

Some people read this story – about a “psychiatrist” taking umbrage at people calling Trump “crazy” to avoid stigmatizing the mentally ill – and taking it as a sign of the growing intellectual frivolity of our society’s putative elite and the left in general.  

I”m going to add emphasis:

“Second, calling Trump crazy hides the fact that we’re crazy for having elected him and even crazier for allowing his crazy policies to persist,” Frances went on. “Trump is as destructive a person in this century as Hitler, Stalin, Mao in the last century. He may be responsible for many more million deaths than they were.”

Someone looking to get headlines for their book, consulting practice or media brand by making a big, stupid headline? 

But of course.

But let’s not sell the little fella short. Remember – Berg’s Seventh Law never sleeps.

Why are “progressives” blaiming Trump for millions of deaths he never committed (note to my progressive readers: the guy’s making it all up)?

The Club

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

It’s no secret that Democrats like Ilhan Omar are openly anti-Semitic and actively seek to destroy Israel.
President Trump says Jews who support such Democrats are betraying their own people and the nation of Israel. 
Paul Mirengoff, writing at Powerline, is upset the President would point this out. Trump is not a Jew.  It’s “inappropriate” for him to speak out.  He “slanders” Jews.
Mirengoff says there are lots of reason Jews might prefer Democrats over Trump, policy reasons or domestic issues.  True, but irrelevant.  If Candidate A says he will give you everything you ever dreamed of, for free, and also will destroy Israel, then voting for Candidate A means you are voting to destroy Israel. 
Mirengoff is the perfect stereotype of the Dave Durenberger – Arne Carlson style of Republican.  It’s no wonder conservatives were sold out time and again while liberals advanced their agenda. 
Being nice is not more important than telling the truth.
Joe Doakes

I suspect Mirengoff (whom I’ve interviewed) is speaking more or less clinically about Jews’ reasons for preferring Democrats, but Joe is correct. It’s easy to “clinical” your way into despotism.

#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?


It’s Gonna Be Awesome

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Germany is selling 30-year bonds with negative rates. You pay the government to hold your money, betting they’ll be willing to give back some of it, in the future.
This is like Guido saying “That’s a nice nest egg you got there. It’d be a shame if anything happened to it. I’ll just hold onto it for you, you know, to protect it, like insurance.”
How is it possible that in a world of 7 billion people there are absolutely no worthwhile Investments?
I suspect it’s because people only invest when they believe there’s a reasonable prospect of getting a return in the future. And the future right now is chaotic, because all of the fundamentals – security of property, property rights, profit, order, rule of law – are being overturned by the revolutionary socialists who want to spread the wealth, your wealth.
Negative Bond. A losing investment. S***, I’ve got plenty of them. Why send my money to Germany? I can lose money right here at home.
Although now that I think about it . . . in the olden days, investors paid a premium to buy government bonds because they were safe, even though the investor would have to wait years to start making money. With a negative bond, will investors demand a discount to buy the bonds so they can start losing money sooner?
And can I bundle a bunch of negative interest bonds, then sell derivatives to investors so they could take the losses as a set-off to income and thereby reduce their income tax? Hmmm, this could be a whole new business opportunity.
Joe Doakes

The free market will eventually figure things out – provided government doesn’t throw a wrench in it all over political expediency…

…oh.

What I’m Not Doing This Weekend

Well, it seems at least one tradition is on a “pause” for the foreseeable future.

AM1280 and the NARN won’t be out at the State Fair this year.

Fifteen straight summers, the NARN guys and I worked out at the Fair. The station took a different route this year.

Which on the one hand is fine – no need to add “getting to the fairgrounds” to all the other show prep stuff.

On the other hand, it means I lose the big benefit of being with the station at the Fair: having an air-conditioned room with a fridge full of water to retreat to when the crowds get to be too much. That, along with getting to meet the audience face to face, was one of the highlights of whole “show at the Fair” experience.

I’ll have to come up with some other side hustle that offers that…

Accentuating The Obvious

Reporter tries to exercise Big Media’s shibboleth – that it’s easier to buy a gun than get a library book.

Finds out it just ain’t so.

To be fair, the woman did a fairly honest job reporting the story.

To be honest, the notion that she thought guns were a gimme at a Walmart tells us something at little depressing about the gullibility and prejudice of Big Media.

No Reason I Can Think Of…

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Remember Hillary using a private email server for her official State Department business, emails which later went missing?
Remember President Trump suggesting we should ask the Russians to give us copies?
Wrong country.  Her emails were automatically copied to the Chinese.  Every single one.  Confirmed by the Inspector General at the Department of Justice.
Weird how I missed the headlines in all the major media.
Joe Doakes

It makes sense, as Glenn Reynolds notes, when you remember they are all Democrat operatives with bylines.

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.

In Which Captain Obvious Gets Promoted To Major

I’ve got a fair number of friends and acquaintances who say they never, ever come to the Twin Cities because of the crime.

Now, I’ve lived here for 34 years – and like most people who live here, I know that the whole place is not a cesspool of criminality. My neighborhood is generally pretty good. To the north, even better. South of Thomas? Not so much.

So most of the hysteria about crime in the Metro is the sort of game of “telephone” you get among people who don’t know the subject all that well – a phenomenon that social media has only accelerated.

But there are places I just don’t go, or at least times when I just don’t go there. Places and times when the risk/reward ratio just isn’t favorable. North Minneapolis after dinner. Dayton’s Bluff or the North End after dark. The less well-lit parts of downtown Minneapolis at night. The Green Line after 10PM.

Statistically, you are much more likely to be a victim of crime and violence when you hang out where violent criminals are.

It’s not hysteria. It’s prudence.

The idea that a third of Americans modify their behavior because of fear of mass shootings?

I was about to say “that’s not prudence – that’s hysteria”; for the most part they are going from one place where mass shootings are vanishingly rare (but correlated via the media’s obsession and Big Gun Control’s focus on mass shootings, rather than by some actual indicator, like “gun free zone” or a state’s regulations on the law-abiding citizen) to another place where, statistically, mass shootings aren’t a whole lot less likely in the same sense that one is “less” likely to get struck by lightning in Saint Paul than Minneapolis.

There are really only two behaviors that affect ones coincidence with and vulnerability to mass shootings:

  • Being in a gun free zone
  • Being, yourself, gun-free.

Hope we’ve solved this.

Mission Accomplished

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Okay, technically it’s Minneapolis, but still, national prominence.
No wonder Congresswoman Omar has time to go jetting off to Israel.  Her work here is done.
 Joe Doakes

We have a generation or two of voters in MInneapolis – mostly white “progressives” and the younger minorities they miseducated – who think that’s a Congressperson’s job.

This Time Without Daddy Warbucks’ Money

Let’s not be coy about it – Jason Lewis lost the 2nd District congressional election because Angie Craig floated to a close win on a tsunami of out-of-district money during a first-term midterm that was bound to bring out the knee-jerks and the soccer moms. The Bloomberg fortune alone pumped seven figures of filthy anti-gun lucre into the district – testimony to how much Big Left hated the most articulate conservative in the House.

But it’s a whole ‘nother election, and Angie Craig has exactly as much to show for her time in office as you’d expect an “HR Executive” to have accomplished – the same as they accomplish in the real business world. Bupkes.

Or – rematch? Nah. Maybe a swing at the Butcher of Vandalia, Tina Smith.

I’d go for that.

Negotiation

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

If women’s soccer players don’t get equal pay, they’ll quit playing.  Then people who don’t watch womens soccer won’t be able to watch womens soccer.  That will show them!!

Joe Doakes

It’s fascinating, to me, watching people who clearly have no idea how the free market works, trying to engage in the free market.

This is a battle the women should be winning – or, perhaps, already are.

I’m starting to think it’s not about money,