Signs, Signs, Everywhere Are Signs

Trevor Noah – who inherited “The Daily Show” from Jon Stewart – took a swipe at the restaurant in Lonsdale that had the infamous “Muslims Get Out” sign (which may have been less a matter of “hate” than “crummy editing”, by the way).

Noah (with emphasis added):

You know what’s also strange is this man genuinely thought people who go around blowing people up would be stopped by a sign? You realize you’re talking to terrorists, not vampires. They don’t need to be invited in, alright? Or maybe he’s onto something, because if you think about it, we’ve never tried that. We’ve never actually tried to repel terrorists with signs.

Sure we have.  But I digress.  Noah:

Yeah, maybe that’s all the airports need is a sign that says “No Terrorists,” yes? Yeah, and then guys are going to be walking going, “Oh, I was going to blow up the airport, but the rules are rules and they said I can’t come in. They said I can’t. They said I can’t come in.”

So, Trevor Noah: you’re saying that putting up a sign that impugns the vast, innocent majority, doesn’t actually prevent evil people from carrying out their plans, then?

According to Trevor Noah, the Mall of America might not be completely safe in perpetuity because of these signs. This could cause problems, couldn’t it?

Huh.  Let’s continue to explore this, Trevs.  Have your people call my people.

After they sweep your jaw up off the floor.

Shocked. Shocked, I Tell You.

I held off talking and writing about the Cascade Mall shooting on Friday, where a man the media immediately and hopefully desdribed as “Hispanic-looking” killed five at a Macy’s.

LIke any good Mitch Berg, I observed Berg’s 18th Law (“Nothing the media writes/says about any emotionally charged event – a mass shooting, a police shooting, anything – should be taken seriously for 48 hours after the original incident.  It will largely be rubbish, as media outlets vie to “scoop” each other even on incorrect facts.”), believing with sickening certainty that the shooter would be a Muslim with extremist sympathies, and believing in a somewhat more sarcastic vein that the shooter would be a Democrat.

And while we’re still technically under the boundaries of Berg’s Law, I just have to say;  Check:

A suspect in a mass shooting at a Washington state mall is arrested in Oak Harbor, Wash. (Twitter/Gerry Oliver)

Island County Sheriff’s Lt. Mike Hawley told reporters that he spotted Cetin near the suspect’s home in Oak Harbor, around 30 miles due west of the mall. Hawley said he immediately recognized Cetin as the suspect, turned his patrol car around and arrested Cetin without incident.

Arlan Cetin is an immigrant from Turkey.   While I may be a deplorable conservative, I do know Turkey is not “Hispanic”.

And although it’s premature to make the jump, the FBI is not ruling out terrorism.

And, er, check on the third point:

I’ll insert the usual disclaimers:  the vast majority of Muslim immigrants are perfectly fine people and good Americans.

Hillary voters, on the other hand…

 

Exodus

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Why are families leaving St. Paul schools?  It’s a mystery.  Now that the staff member doing the survey has been let go, we may never find out.

 Looking at the chart, there appears to be some overlap in causes since the percentages work out to 114% and even under Common Core math, that’s not a reasonable answer.  But just looking at the top three responses, I think I detect a pattern.

 40% said “We moved.”  I wonder why they moved?  Better job outside the district?  Seems unlikely, the economy isn’t that robust.  Maybe they moved to GET outside the district?  But why would they do that? Who’d want to leave the vibrant diversity of Frogtown to live in monochrome, monoculture Woodbury?

 36% said “the school was unsafe.”  But St. Paul just adopted new discipline policies to let Children Whose Lives Matter run wild.  That’ll cut down on reported discipline statistics which will be a big help, won’t it?  After the news accounts of violence in the last two years and the “don’t-bother-to-catch-go-straight-to-release” policy in effect, why would families think schools would be unsafe?

 30% said “child was harassed/bullied.” Well that’s just whining.  All kids are harassed and bullied, especially kids with Privilege who deserve it.  That’s no excuse to leave the school. Pulling your kids out of our school costs us pupil-day money and that’s a racist hate crime.

 Yep, it’s a total mystery why parents are pulling their kids out of St. Paul schools.  Luckily, there are paid consultants to offer possible suggestions, some cited in the article.  More arts classes might help.  Different languages, smaller class sizes, better special education.  Maybe training, to teach parents not to expect so much from schools like order, discipline, learning. 

 I hope they figure it out soon.  A child’s education is not an experiment you can do over if it fails the first time, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime chance to avoid a life of misery.  All those minds would be a terrible thing to waste on fantasy feel-good foolishness.

 Joe Doakes

Joe’s got some good ideas…

…but when you combine a “one size fits all” model of education, combined with a system that is designed to provide sinecures for the ruling political class’s care and feeding much more than “educating” people (despite the best efforts of a lot of teachers), what do they expect?

Or, more importantly, what do they expect you to expect?

Our Name Will Never Die, This NARN Will Be Forever

Today, the Northern Alliance Radio Network – America’s first grass-roots talk radio show – is on the air!

I’l be on from 1-3PM today this afternoon.

  • I’ll be talking with former state senator Brian LeClair about early voting, which is starting…well, early.
  • Also – that sign in Lonsdale.

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

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

Join us!

Fear The Walking Sheep

Millennials are vexing their baby boomer elders/bosses by breaking ranks on the mother of all individual rights issues – gun control.

The millennial generation just isn’t buying the BS:

The article – by millennial filmmaker Jesse Winton – explores a number of theories for this phenomenon, both Winton’s own and some of the inevitably condescending, laughable ones from the big media.

I’ve got my own theory.

If “The Walking Dead” and its various spinoffs aren’t the #1 cable show among millennials, they’re certainly on the short list.  They – and the popularity of dystopian literature, TV and films ranging like “The Hunger Games” franchise through the popularity of frayed-around-the-edges entertainment from “Batman” through “Narcos” – reflect a whole different attitude about the world, and at least some subconscious view of the future, than previous generations had.

But the popularity of “Walking Dead” in particular – on its surface, a story about a zombie apocalypse, which is really a meditation on human nature in a world without external order (similar to Trulbert, although my book used satire rather than exploding zombie brains as its medium) – should tell us something about millennials’ view of the world; they see, consciously or not, that “order” is an artificial and paper-thin construct when things go very very off the rails.

I had that same moment, 35 years ago.   It was long after the glory days of the zombie B-movie, and decades before “Walking Dead”.  My ‘ZOMPOC” moment was reading Alas Babylon by Pat Frank – the story of a small central Florida town in the middle of a Cuban Missile Crisis gone horribly, cut off from the world and left to its own devices.  The book – which I read when I was still a liberal, and still more or less in favor of some sort of gun control – and the years of observing human behavior since then, in one disaster after another, left me with the ineluctable conclusion; while humans are supremely capable of self-organization, there will be some segment of the population whose self-organization will be to prey off the rest of the world.

In disaster after disaster – from acute crises like Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy, to the LA riots, to the ongoing collapses of order in places like Detroit, Oakland, Saint Louis and the less fashionable parts of Chicago – it became clear that trusting “society” to take care of you was a pollyannaish abdication of your responsibility to yourself, your family, and your society.

I think millennials – entering the workforce at a time when the things previous generations had seen as guarantees were just not happening – have questioned a lot of the assumptions that lead the smugger, more entitled parts of our society to embrace disarming the law-abiding.

Because the world is always throwing zombies of one type or another at us;  history is spectacularly unkind to the idea that there’ll be a Rick Grimes riding to your rescue, always and forever.

So Let Me Get This Straight

Australia bans vast swathes of political and cosmetically inconvenient guns – drawing the favorable attention of Barack Obama and Hillary Herself.

Thing is, Australia never really had a “gun problem”.  They had a couple of mass shootings, to which the political class responded with pure emotion.

And now?  Years after they banned most politically-charged weapons?  Well, who’da thunk it, they have a gun problem.

(The kind where criminals have guns, and use them on each other and on their innocent victims.  Not the “law-abiding citizens can protect themselves” kind of “gun problem” that so exercises Minnesota’s “gun safety” community).

Exhibit A

There are many, many reasons smart Second Amendment activist suppose a national firearms registry; only the law-abiding will register, it’s a natural and essential tool to use in confiscation, and whenever the left says anything about guns, including “nobody’s coming for them”, you can be sure that they will come for them the moment they get the power.

But there’s also this.

This Guy Hunts Down Pedophiles and Beats Them With a Hammer

Whenever you are on a government list, you are only as safe as the dumbesand least ethical  government employee allows you to be.

Mystery!

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Why are families leaving St. Paul schools?  It’s a mystery.  Now that the staff member doing the survey has been let go, we may never find out.

 

Looking at the chart, there appears to be some overlap in causes since the percentages work out to 114% and even under Common Core math, that’s not a reasonable answer.  But just looking at the top three responses, I think I detect a pattern.

 40% said “We moved.”  I wonder why they moved?  Better job outside the district?  Seems unlikely, the economy isn’t that robust.  Maybe they moved to GET outside the district?  But why would they do that? Who’d want to leave the vibrant diversity of Frogtown to live in monochrome, monoculture Woodbury?

 36% said “the school was unsafe.”  But St. Paul just adopted new discipline policies to let Children Whose Lives Matter run wild.  That’ll cut down on reported discipline statistics which will be a big help, won’t it?  After the news accounts of violence in the last two years and the “don’t-bother-to-catch-go-straight-to-release” policy in effect, why would families think schools would be unsafe?

 30% said “child was harassed/bullied.” Well that’s just whining.  All kids are harassed and bullied, especially kids with Privilege who deserve it.  That’s no excuse to leave the school. Pulling your kids out of our school costs us pupil-day money and that’s a racist hate crime.

 Yep, it’s a total mystery why parents are pulling their kids out of St. Paul schools.  Luckily, there are paid consultants to offer possible suggestions, some cited in the article.  More arts classes might help.  Different languages, smaller class sizes, better special education.  Maybe training, to teach parents not to expect so much from schools like order, discipline, learning. 

 I hope they figure it out soon.  A child’s education is not an experiment you can do over if it fails the first time, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime chance to avoid a life of misery.  All those minds would be a terrible thing to waste on fantasy feel-good foolishness.

 Joe Doakes

I’m not saying “Making the schools crappy” was a diabolical DFL plot to make conservative-leaning people leave Minneapolis and Saint Paul, to consolidate control forever in the hands of the DFL.

But if it were their plan, how would it be working any differently?

The Club

Say what you will about Michael Brodkorb (and when I say “say what you will”, I don’t actually mean in the comment section of this post; I realize many of you really really don’t like the guy, and I get it, but that’s also not the subject of this thread; I have heard your objections and noted them)

But like Brodkorb or hate him, there’s little way around the conclusion that he was instrumental in breaking open the Grazzini-Rucki parental kidnapping case, for which Sandra Grazzini-Rucki was sentenced yesterday.   He did, in fact, the sort of thing that “journalists” used to see as their goal; telling stories – the whole stories – and comforting the afflicted by righting the wrongs against them.

Which is, of course, not what modern “journalism” is about.   Yeah, they have a political outcome in mind, naturally, at least at an institutional level – but for an awful lot of “journalists”, the biggest goal seems to be keeping their status as society’s “high priests of information” intact against the interlopers.

One of the lower high priests for the past thirty years has been Brian Lambert.  And he breaks down the “journalists’ conundrum; to hail someone who may have done one of the few notable works of actual journalism in Minnesota in recent years, or to admit that someone who “journos” regard as politically unclean (not so much for his present activities  as for his previous life as a no-holds-barred GOP operator, for which there is no statute of limitations) is not only one of them, but better at it than most of them?

Brian Lambert at the MinnPost is like most journalists, only moreso; while most Twin Cities “journalists” merely don’t have any conservatives in their daily social circles, Lambert has had an actual toe in DFL politics (he was hired to be then-Senator Mark Dayton’s press guy right in time for Dayton to leave office).

And Lambert runs down the real conundrum that Brodkorb presents the media:

The circus aspect of the [Grazzini-Rucki] case aside, the episode highlights a question asked more and more frequently as the business of news gathering fragments away from just a few major institutions and into the hands of activist citizens, people with more time and interest in a given story than traditional news organizations.

And that question is (with emphasis added by me)…:

Specifically, if Michael Brodkorb was practicing journalism by reporting steadily on the Grazzini-Rucki matter, is he then in effect a journalist entitled to First Amendment protections and collegial support afforded normal reporters?

In other words, can he go from not just a mere citizen, but a formerly very trayf one, to joining The Club?

And if so, why haven’t more journalists come to his defense in the wake of the restraining order, which among other things, he says, has left him confined to Dakota County this past week and taking calls from police for things he’s written since the order went out?

My guess – and let’s be honest, it’s more than just a guess – is because Brodkorb worked for “the bad guys”, and ate “the good guys'” lunch.

In fact, we get it in almost as many words:

Speaking for himself, Joe Spear, managing editor of the Mankato Free Press and the [Society of Professional Journalists’] current secretary, has some sympathy for Brodkorb’s predicament but agrees with the SPJ’s official decision to wait until after Thursday’s hearing before making a statement on the matter.

“It does appear [Brodkorb] was acting as a journalist, at least in some capacity. Although not in the same capacity as if he was working for the Star Tribune or another organization.

The hypocrisy is thick enough to cut with an axe.  Not only is the First Amendment not a toy reserved for people who get a check from a newspaper – it’s a right “of the people”, not “of people who work for the right organization”…

…but this is the same “Society of Professional Journalists” that gave an award to Karl Bremer, an irascible crank whose only real “journalistic” accomplishment was stalking Michele Bachman.  The award, by the way, was for…stalking Michele Bachmann.

No, I’m not exaggerating; here’s Lambo’s long-time colleague David Brauer:

Bremer uncovered stories about Bachmann that the mainstream media missed and later got around to reporting, Brauer said.

“You can argue that his pursuit of Michele Bachmann was at times obsessive and excessive, but, really, I think … we need approaches like Karl’s,” Brauer said. “We need people to remind us that journalists can be hellraisers and rabble rousers and opinionated. He added facts to the debate.”

In other words, Karl Bremer did exactly what Michael Brodkorb did – covered something the mainstream media didn’t (or, in the case of stalking Michele Bachmann, couldn’t do while maintaining an illusion of decorum).

But Bremer covered the right people, while Brodkorb largely bedeviled the “journalists’s” drinking buddies and in many cases, let’s be honest, future employers.

We wouldn’t be having this discussion if Brodkorb hadn’t switched his sights to Keith Downey.

Oh, and Sandra Grazzini-Rucki.

You Were Warned: MNA Edition

A friend of the blog writes in re a piece on the ongoing Allina nurses strike:

[Saint Paul City Councilman] Chris Tolbert said, “If a nurse in the health care industry can’t get quality health care from a health care company, we’re all in trouble.”

Well, that is what we Republicans said when the ACA was first signed into law.

History has such an ineluctable symmetry, sometimes….

Inevitable

Rahm Emanuel says “never waste a crisis”.
And the city whose mayor he is – Chicago – is an ongoing crisis that never seems to end.

The city has seen over 2000 shootings so far this year – that’s to say, the first half of the year:

At least 14 people were shot in Chicago over 10 hours Tuesday afternoon through early Wednesday, pushing the number of gun victims in the city this year to more than 2,200, including at least 21 children 13 and younger.

Among those shot Tuesday was 6-year-old Tacarra Morgan, who was seriously wounded in the abdomen while sitting on her porch in West Englewood with her mother and grandmother. Police said two volleys of gunfire erupted as three cars drove down the 6000 block of South Paulina Street around 1 p.m.

Very much like the victims have a great misfortune not to look like the children of NPR executives; they are disproportionately black and brown, disproportionately living in the neighborhoods “served” by Chicago’s Democrat elite.

In common with most violent crime victims in the United States, they lived in Democrat run the cities.

Not Ready For Prime Time

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

White cop shoots Black youth in view of a million witnesses and store security video.  Where are the protests?

 Granted, the cop was off-duty, in civilian clothes, on personal business in a shopping center.  Granted, the youth was busy slashing shoppers with a knife.  Still – why isn’t this a racial hate crime?

 Maybe Somalis born in African who come to America as refugees don’t count as “African-American” but count as “White” the way Asians do for college admissions, and therefore this kid is not protest-worthy?  Or maybe the kid was a White Somali – they have them, you know; they sign up at the same place as Hispanics like that guy in Florida.   

Maybe St. Cloud is inconveniently far away if you depend on light rail for transportation to the protest?

 It’s just odd.

 Joe Doakes

In point of fact, they don’t count as “African-American”.

It’s A Start

Sandra Grazzini-Rucki was sentenced today for the kidnapping of her children, after losing custody to her ex-husband, David Rucki; she then sequestered them on a ranch for over two years.  Not only did she keep them from her ex-husband – but she apparently didn’t visit them herself either.

Just my opinion, here; there is no circle of hell cold enough for people who deprive other parents of access to their children without damn good reason.  Ms. Grazzini-Rucki is lucky I wasn’t the judge.   Enough said.

More on this case – and its prime mover, Michael Brodkorb – tomorrow.

Survey

SCENE:  Mitch BERG is at work in his home office.  His phone rings.  

BERG:  Hello?

POLLSTER:  Hello.  I’m Kandi, a pollster working on a combined study commissioned by Harvard University, Northeastern University, the Trace and the Guardian, four organizations dedicated to disarming Americans by any means, fair or foul.  If you have a few moments to spare, I’d like to ask you some questions about gun ownership.

BERG:  Go ahead.

POLLSTER:   How many guns do you own?

BERG:  How many guns am I going to admit I own to an anonymyous rep for  four organizations that are dedicated to ensuring that Americans are disarmed, docile sheep,?

POLLSTER:   That’s correct!

BERG:  None!  Guns are scary!

POLLSTER:  So that’s no guns, then?

BERG:  As far as you know.

POLLSTER:  Wow. It’s amazing how the number of gun owners is dropping, according to our Fact-Based Research ®.

BERG:  It is, isn’t it?  Absolutely astounding.

SURVEY:  We’re also finding three percent of American adults own 50% of the guns!

BERG:  Huh.  I’m also gonna guess 3% of American adults own 50% of the iPhone 7s, and roughly .000001 of all Americans own 90% of all newspapers.

SURVEY:  No comment!

BERG:  Naturally.

SURVEY:  Now, if you did buy a gun, why would you buy one?  Are you a hunter, a target shooter, or would you buy a gun due to fear?

BERG:  If I did have a gun, which I don’t, as I already told you, it’d be for self-defense.

POLLSTER:  OK.  “Fear”.

BERG:  No, self-defense.  A prudent response to the vicissitudes of human nature.

POLLSTER:  Right.  Fear.

BERG:  Nope.  A rational, prudent assessment of and response to life’s actual risks, based on data, ability and experience.

POLLSTER:  Right.  We call that “fear”.  It’s just a category.

BERG:  Naturally.  Hey, someone’s calling…

POLLSTER:  I didn’t hear a click…

(But BERG has already hung up the phone).

And SCENE.

 

Set Straight

Your liberal friends are probably salving their worries over Hillary’s health with a recent NYT hit piece on Scott Walker.

Have no fear. In what is becoming a Berg’s Law-worthy pattern, the Times’ piece is pretty much a NYPost article in a tweed sportcoat.  Christian Schneider notes in the conclusion:

Christopher Hitchens once wrote, “It is a frequent vice of radical polemic to assert, and even to believe, that once you have found the lowest motive for an antagonist, you have identified the correct one.” In this case, the New York Times started with a motive and worked backwards, rather than letting the facts lead them to an honest conclusion.

Read the whole thing.  Refer it to your liberal friends.  Ask if it’s ever been different.

 

Game-Changer In CD2

It was once said that the only thing that could hurt the career of a Chicago Democrat was being caught in bed with a live boy or a dead girl.

But in this blog’s comment section earlier this week, Mark “Mr. Dilettante” Heuring may have tripped onto something potentially more damning in re Angie Craig, the DFL-endorsed candidate taking on Jason Lewis in the Second Congressional District.

And she barely bothers to hide it. See if you can find it between the lines:

For the last 10 years of my career, I was a member of the leadership team at Minnesota start-up St. Jude Medical. At St. Jude, I was focused on supporting those employees who supported our business – so patients ultimately could benefit from their work.

Beneath all the executive verbal camouflage, it’s pretty clear.

Angie Craig works in HR.

Citizens of CD2 – think about life in your office.  Think; do you want to be represented, have your taxes set, have policies governing your life and livelihood…

…set by an HR person?

In a sane world, that would shut out the lights right there.

CD2, you can have better.

Chill

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Rep. Keith Ellison introduced the Campus Gun Policy Transparency Act which would require colleges to disclose their policies relating to guns on campus.  He claims existing federal law requires colleges to publish campus safety information but not specific policies related to guns.  In addition, he claims colleges are not required to report gun-related crime statistics.

 “Students have a right to know if their fellow students are bringing guns to class.” 

No, they don’t.  They don’t have a right to know if their fellow students had an abortion, voted for Democrats, worship in a mosque or drive a Prius.  Those are all private activities, nobody’s business but your own. 

 There is no evidence that guns on campus cause crime (and that’s not due to lack of reporting statistics – if there were lots of shootings on campus, emergency room records would be conclusive proof).

 The only possible reason for requiring a federal campus gun policy but not a campus abortion policy, mosque policy or campus Prius policy, it to chill Second Amendment rights.

 So, pretty much par for the course for Democrats.

 Joe Doakes

To a conservative, rights are endowed to us by our creator.

To a liberla, “rights” are perks granted to us by a benevolent government.

The Good Guy With The Gun

The man who shot the apparently ISIS-affiliated maniac at the Crossroads Mall in Saint Cloud over the weekend has been IDed as Jason Falconer – a carry permit instructor, civilian carry advocate, and part-time officer and former chief of the tiny, tiny police department of tiny, tiny Albany Minnesota.

And if you’re a wanna-be terrorist, Falconer’s just about the last civilian you want to run into when you’re going on your rampage in a “gun free zone”:

USPSA Shooter,  3-Gunner, and NRA-certified firearms instructor Jason Falconer has been identified as the man who shot and killed a 22-year-old Somali immigrant who went on a stabbing rampage inside a St. Cloud, (MN) Mall on Saturday.

The apparent terrorist—who apparently asked victims if they were Muslims before stabbing them—was engaged by Falconer inside the mall.

Emphasis added by me:

Falconer is the president and owner of Tactical Advantage LLC, a shooting range and tactical training facility with a strong focus on arming concealed carriers. He’s also a former chief of the Albany (MN) police department, and he remains a part-time officer.

And is there bias involved? Oh, yes:

But Falconer has consistently been identified in the mainstream mediaonly as as a “former police chief” and  “off-duty police officer.”

Falconer’s side gig?  Ensuring law-abiding citizens are armed, and capable of doing…

…exactly what he did.  I’ve been documenting these sorts of cases as they occur over here (and feel free to submit more of ’em!).

As Glenn Reynolds puts it, we The People need to be a pack, not a herd.

UPDATE: David French notes the obvious; Falconer was not only in the right place at the right time, but he was the right person.  But then, anyone can be:

You can be Jason Falconer. In most communities in this country, you can not only own and carry a weapon for personal defense, you can also receive comprehensive training. You have virtually no control over whether you’re at the right place at the right time, but you do have control over whether you’re the right person.

And as has been noted in the comment section, this incident highlights the need for “Stand your Ground” legislation; a non-cop would have had a “duty to retreat” – to make a reasonable effort to disengage in the face of the attack.

What does “reasonable” mean?  That your efforts to avoid using lethal force are enough to convince the cops, prosecutors and potentially a jury that you did your best to avoid using lethal force.  It’s vague; it’s intended to be vague, concentrating the power of life and death in the hands of prosecutors.

“Stand Your Ground” will be on the agenda this coming legislative session.  It’s doubtful the Senate or Governor will pass it.

So we’re gonna need a new Senate and Governor.

Priorities!

Angie Craig apparently believes that the most important thing facing voters in the 2nd CD is Jason Lewis’s radio shows from 2001.

Other Democratic-elected women say Lewis should be held accountable for the things he said, including what they said were offensive comments about women, the LGBTQ community and slavery.

I’ve sent an email to Murphy about whether the same standard is being applied to Bill Clinton, Al Franken, and Nick Coleman.

Charitable Exhortation

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

In what conceivable way is my charitable giving any of my employer’s business?  

 More annoying – they pick some charity they want to fund and hit up everybody to contribute.  I nominate the National Rifle Association.  No?  Why not?  Why does it have to be the United Way funneling money to Leftist causes?

 A “charitable contribution” is, by definition, a non-governmental activity for which my contribution is tax-deductible.  Why would a governmental entity be encouraging government employees to reduce the tax revenues from which we’re funded?

 Joe Doakes

It’s not like tax revenue ever really drops…

Last Gleaming

SCENE:  Mitch BERG is shopping for chainsaw chains at MENARDS.  He sees Garth MULLER, a professional golf pro and Vice Chair for Ideological Purity at the Minnesota 5th CD Libertarian Party.  He is dressed head to toe in Minnesota Vikings wear.  

MULLER:  Hey, Merg!  People who pledge allegiance to Skycloth before football games are no better than Nazis who sieg-heiled along with Hitler.

BERG:  “Pledge allegiance to Skycloth?  What are you talking about?”

MULLER:  The American flag, and the miltaristic ritual of standing for the national anthem before NFL games.

BERG:  Before what?

MULLER:  NFL games.

BERG:  That’s what I thought you said.  I don’t stand to pledge allegiance to the government.  I do it out of respect for what this nation is supposed to be about.  And other than some community opprobium, there’s really no consequence for not standing for the anthem.

MULLER:  But all the fuss about Kapernick and the other people taking a knee…

BERG:  I don’t really care.  Let ’em.  It costs nobody anything.

But – that team you support?

MULLER:  Go Vikes!

BERG:  Yeah – if I decide not to pay my part of the taxes for “The People’s Stadium”, and carry the protest on long enough, men with guns will beat down my door and take the money.  To pay for your recreation, sixteen Sundays a year.

So – “Skycloth”, consequence-free observance of an ideal.

Your NFL game?  My money being taken from me by force.  Which is either theft or slavery.

MULLER:  But…

BERG:  I know.  Principle.

And SCENE.