As Stupid Does

A barrel full of a nauseating-looking stew of what looks like sputum, blood and pus appears on the Nicollet Mall. 

Behind it is a large sign, set off by bright, blinking lights: 

BARREL MIGHT CONTAIN
HIGH CONCENTRATION OF
EBOLA VIRUS!

Exposure Could Very Possibly
be Fatal!

If true, do not Lick, Drink,
Rub on Skin or Smear on Face!

(Also, it might not.  You’ll have to
lick, drink or smear it on you
to find out what’s in the barrel)

Let’s assume there are three groups of people walking past this barrel:

  • Epidemiologists, Virologists, and other people with the medical and science background to know what a “Barrel full of Ebola virus” means – figure maybe 1/1,000 of the passing audience
  • People who without medical or scientific training, but who think the idea of licking, drinking, or rubbing a concoction rich in Ebola viruses on their face is a bad idea, and refrain from doing so
  • People who say “Yes, We Can!”, and lick, smear their faces with, or guzzle a pint of the concoction. 

Question: Of the three groups above, who are the stupid ones? 

Just curious.  

The Suspense Was Killing Us

Joe Doakes from Como Park emailed:

The President is preparing an Executive Order to open the Mexican border.

Border Patrol upper management just recalled half the M-4 carbines used by Border Patrol officers, for “refurbishment.”

M-4′s aren’t unique – couldn’t they borrow some from the Army? Why are Border Patrol agents being disarmed just as the borders are being flung open?

Wait, maybe I just answered my own question.

Joe Doakes

it’s never a hard guess…

Trulbert! Part XXIII – Redemption’s Handmaiden

 - 10PM, November 3, 2015 – The Garage Behind The Hendrickson Residence, Minneapolis, MN

“Charlie?”

Hendrickson slowly got to his feet, shaking off the residue of the crippling anxiety attack.

“I know, Dad – don’t be stealing trucks.  I get that.  But from what Nicolai and Hana have been saying, if the Methodists have been taking all the beer, then if I learned anything from watching Boardwalk Empire, the beer is worth something…”

“But…”, Hendrickson searched for a follow-up thought.

“It was parked behind that school over on Minnehaha Parkway that the Methodists are using as a warehouse for stuff they’ve stolen.  Nobody was watching it.  I got away clean…”

“When did I let you watch Boardwalk Empire?”

Charlie didn’t have an answer for that.

Continue reading

A Vote That Also Matters

Time Magazine is stealing some of my material.  But it’s for the greater good, so I’ll let ‘em get away with it for now. 

Time apparently has started an annual “Which Word Should Be Banned” poll. 

And while I’ve never even heard of some of them, there’s one that I agree with wholeheartedly:

feminist: You have nothing against feminism itself, but when did it become a thing that every celebrityhad to statetheir position on whether this word applies to them, like some politician declaring a party? Let’s stick to the issues and quit throwing this label around like ticker tape at a Susan B. Anthony parade.

Good lord.  No kidding. 

Look – “feminism” in the sense of supporting women’s legal and moral equality, hardly anyone argues with.  Certainly not me – which is one reason I’m the Twin Cities’ best feminist.  And take a moment and smoke ‘em if you got ‘em, because that battle’s been pretty much won (and like any battle, they’re all “pretty much”, rather than to an absolute numerical limit, won). 

But the term has become a cliche.

The Faint Glimmer Of Hope

Living as I do in the Fourth CD, watching wave after wave of excellent candidates go forth to do battle in Saint Paul (Sharna Walgren, Tomy Hernandez, Teresa Collett) and across the river in Minneapolis in the 5th CD (Doug Daggett, Chris Fields), it’s easy to get discouraged.  It feels sometimes that there just is no hope.

And then you see a story like this

…and you suck it up and you carry on for next cycle.

Giving Them Ideas

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Modern cars have computers that act like a Black Box data recorder and the data can be used as evidence against you in court. The Minnesota Court of Appeals recently upheld the conviction of a woman charged with Reckless Driving, based on data the State Patrol downloaded from the computer inside her wrecked car after the accident.

I’m seeing a market for a Black Box Eraser device. Involved in an accident? Afraid it might be your fault? Push a button and ZAP, the Black Box memory is wiped and can’t be used against you. Order before midnight tonight. Don’t leave home without it.

Joe Doakes

I bet Alice Hausman reads this and submits a bill regulating such devices in the Transportation Committee before the next session.

Fear Of A Dumb Planet

SCENE: Mitch BERG is walking through the woods in Como Park, looking for a place to practice the bagpipes.

Suddenly, Avery LIBRELLE jumps out from behind a tree. 

LIBRELLE:  Hey, Merg!  Your sides has been owned again!

BERG:  Er, Avery?  What are you doing in the middle of the woods?

LIBRELLE: Stakeout for climate criminals.  So anyway, we were talking about how your side has been owned again.

BERG:  ”We” weren’t.  You were. 

LIBRELLE:  Hahaha.  And it comes from Canada.  Here.  Read it. 

20141112-102136-37296823.jpg

LIBRELLE: So yet again, a Canadian proves he knows what’s best for us better than the American electorate does. 

BERG:  Well, no.  He’s shown he’s absorbed Deb Wasserman-Drescher’s chanting points like a Macalester College poli-sci grad.  Pretty much every point Richard Brunt of Victoria British Columbia says is wrong. 

LIBRELLE:  No way!

BERG:  Way.  Corporate profits are high because companies are sitting on cash, rather than investing.  The “under 6%” unemployment number is a sham; the percentage of people in the workforce who are working is essentially unchanged since the lowest point in the depression.  The GDP growth rate Mr. Brunt is bragging about is the slowest of any recovery in the post-war era. This is especially noteworthy because, normally, steep sharp recessions have steep, sharp recoveries (see 1982). This one was a steep recession with a painfully-slow recovery. How painful? The current GDP growth is equal to the WORST quarter of growth in the recovery from the 1982 recession.

Gasoline prices are “falling” to about $1 more than they were when Obama took office. Worse than that when you adjust for inflation. 

LIBRELLE:  Hah, Merg!  There is no inflation!

BERG:  Does you or Mr. Brunt ever buy bread, beef, chicken, eggs or health insurance?  …? CPI shows low inflation, but that’s largely a function of the price of debt – which is being kept artificially low:

Oh, yeah – and oil imports are declining partly due to the slow economy, and partly due to drilling in the Dakotas, which is basically happening over Obama’s, let’s just say, passive-aggressive objection.

As to the “respected around the world” bit? That’s just delusional.

LIBRELLE:  That’s just like a typical Repblicon.  A message based on fear!

BERG:  Fear?

LIBRELLE:  Yeah.  Fear of black people!

BERG:  How did fear or black people enter the conversation?

LIBRELLE:  You’re afraid, aren’t you?  Boo!  There’s a black guy sneaking up on you!

(BERG turns, inflates the bag on his pipes, and starts playing random noises to drown LIBRELLE out as he walks back to his car).

Creative Dissension

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

It’s be wonderful if Minnesota would strengthen its Constitutional protection of gun owners, as other states have. I’ve pointed out for years that the level of scrutiny is the key to winning court cases.

As was noted in the comments, adding “and we really mean it” to the Constitution does nothing when the judges are routinely ignoring the law, and the legislature won’t pull their funding to bring them into line. That’s what we need in this state and this nation: a good old-fashioned constitutional crisis. The Congress and the Minnesota legislature need to shut things down. Stop funding the court and the Executive Branch until they come into line with the powers enumerated in the state and federal Constitutions. Yes, we’ll get ripped in the media, but we’re going to get that anyway so we might as well get something for it.

Won’t happen with compromisers like Mitch McConnell in charge, of course; but if we can keep sending Tea Partiers, maybe someday . . . .

Joe Doakes

The hope is what keeps me in the GOP.

Veterans Day

I never quite know what to say to veterans.

Hear me out, here.

Saying “thank you for your service” seems trite – almost mawkish.   Someone who never served saying “Thanks for going overseas and getting shot at!”?

See what I mean?

In the meantime, what I want to say is “glad you made it home”.  But I can see that being taken the wrong way.

http://www.rare-posters.com/5475.jpg

So I’ll wing it.

Veterans:  thanks for spending the best years of your lives in barracks, troops ships, foxholes, berthing spaces, CVC helmets, cockpits and gun mounts, doing things most of us can’t imagine, to protect the freedoms too many Americans take very much for granted.

It doesn’t roll off the tongue, but it doesn’t have to.

Open Letter To The New GOP Majorities

To:  New GOP Majorities in the MN House and US Congress
From: Mitch Berg, Uppity Peasant
Re:  Agenda

All,

Want something to show you’re serious about getting the boot of government off of innocent citizens’ necks? 

Reform civil-forfeiture laws.  Now. 

Including, preferably, eradicating laws that allow corrupt pettifoggers to run rackets with the blessing of “the law”. 

Do it now, so we can see who the real enemies are. 

That is all.

Lying, Criminal Or Both?

There’s an old saying; “success has a thousand fathers; failure is an orphan”. 

In the wake of the Democrat party’s nationwide electoral humiliation, the left is looking for things to hang their hopes on. 

It’s human nature; the good guys were doing it two years ago, too.

So here’s what the Democrats are hanging their hats on; in a blue state, a 67 year old governor who gets mistaken for his entrepreneur anscestors, a superannuated standup comic, and a couple of congressmen dragged out of mothballs at the Museum of Pettifogging eked out wins in a state where…they were expected to eke out wins. 

But remember – whatever success there is has a thousand fathers.  Er, parents.  And the local left is stepping all over itself to claim their piece of the success less-failure. 

“In These Times” is the sort of “progressive” publication you can imagine a room full of Grace Kellys producing.  I don’t read it much, because it’s just not a challenge. 

But in their post mortem of the MN elections, they made an interesting and, dare I say, surprising claim.

No, it’s not the callow reference to stereotypes.  That’s no surprise from any “progressive” publication:

Mike McIntee, who lives in Eagan and is executive producer [Hah!  - Ed] of The UpTake, a citizen journalism-driven, online video streaming website, has seen his first-ring suburb change politically. The residents of Eagan’s cul-de-sacs no longer exclusively resemble an episode of The Brady Bunch, but include different ethnicities and low-income housing.

“White People” = “Brady Bunch”. 

Huh. 

Anyway – here’s the interesting part (emphasis added by me):

McIntee also credits the work of Protect Minnesota, which works to end gun violence by turning it into a political issue in urban and suburban areas. Protect Minnesota sent out mailers this election season attacking candidates who opposed gun control. Its gun-safety champions who won on Tuesday include Ron Erhardt, who represents the suburb of Edina. Meanwhile, the National Rifle Association’s influence may be waning in Minnesota. Three rural DFLers who were endorsed by the NRA all lost.

Protect Minnesota?

The gun grabber group led by Heather Martens known mainly for its comic ineptitude, has done more harm than “good” for the gun grabber movement in the past…couple of decades.  They mobilize no significant people (a couple of dozen might turn out for a vital hearing, as opposed to hundreds of Real Americans. 

But what of their claims? 

  • McIntee claims “Protect” Minnesota sent out “mailings attacking candidates“:  Now, the Minnesota Human Rights community is pretty good at keeping tabs on what the orcs are doing.  And nobody seems to have seen a “Protect Minnesota” mailer.  None.  Michael Bloomberg and the DFL both hit on guns – but both groups carefully excised the hapless “Protect Minnesota” from their strategy.
  • What “Gun Safety Champions?”  Protect MN is a lobbying group, not a PAC.  Did they endorse candidates?  If so ,they broke the law; lobbying groups can’t endorse candidates.
  • They’re claiming credit for Ron Erhardt?  If Mike McIntee or Heather Martens wants to make the claim that guns were behind Ron Erhardt’s razor-thin win in Edina, feel perfectly free.  But be ready to be slapped down hard.   It’s an absurd claim. 
  • They’re Claiming They Have The Momentum?:  “Three rural DFLers endorsed by the NRA” lost – but then, most rural DFLers lost, whatever their NRA and MNGOPAC endorsement. The election wasn’t about guns! But even so, over 3/4 of MNGOPAC’s endorsed candidates, GOP and DFL, won on election night – and many of the ones that lost in Greater Minnesota lost to other candidates with high GOCRA and MNGOPAC ratings.  Either way, gun owners won.  To claim the Gun Rights movement lost last Tuesday is a Baghdad-Bob-level bit of delusion. 

But delusion is Heather Martens’ stock in trade.  From the “Protect” MN website:

From the “P”M website. Click on the link to actually see it.

Look, “Progressives”; if it makes you sleep easier at night thinking that…:

  • Mark Dayton, who has spent the past two cycles trying to defuse Real American opposition by claiming he has a couple of .357 Magnums at home for self-defense, and
  • Al Franken, who touches on guns as obliquely as his caucus will allow him to, and
  • Rick Nolan, who ran away from the anti-gun movement (ineptly), and
  • Colin Peterson, with an NRA “A” rating, along with…
  • 11 new Republicans, all of them pro-gun, mostly MNGOPAC endorsed, all of them Second-Amendment-friendly, and
  • a solidly pro-Human Rights MN House, with Michael Paymar’s Metrocrat caucus demoted to the cheap seats…

…are a “victory” for “gun safety?”  Go for it!

It’s Heather Martens’ take, and it’s delusional…

…but I repeat myself. 

Note to Mike McIntee and the rest of the “progressive” feed trough; if that’s the best source you can pick, no wonder you guys are getting your asses kicked on Second Amendment issues.

Separate But Equal

For starters, I think schools today resort to suspension way too quickly; sometimes it seems it’s the only sort of consequence schools offer anymore. There seem to be either no meaningful consequences to an action – or a three day vacation. And don’t kid yourself – that’s what suspension is, to any kid who’s actually getting suspended.

To the extent that black and Hispanic kids were getting suspended more? That’s at least partly the sign of a lazy administration.

But the news that the Minneapolis public schools have officially adopted a “separate but equal” system, where most students can be suspended without further ado, but black and Hispanic students require further review, makes me wonder if these people have ever heard of the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment.

Firefight

When it comes to stating and defending their points under fire, American politicians are pansies.

British parliamentarians?  They are like the Mike Ditkas of political speech.

And here’s one, courtesy of Margaret Thatcher, that I would love to see some Minnesota Republican, some how, some way, exhume and use in the coming session.

Because it applies to us, here and now.

Darned If You Do, Darned If You Don’t

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Obama is sending more troops to Iraq. Ordinarily, I’d use a colorful expression to explain why that’s a dumb idea. Not this time.

If I said “not our circus, not our monkeys,” then Liberals would gibber that I’m comparing Africans to Apes, proving I’m racissss.

And if I said “we don’t have a dog in that fight,” Liberals would howl that dogs are offensive to Muslims, proving I’m an intolerant religious bigot.

If I said “There is no Constitutional authority to deploy US troops to a foreign land without a Congressional declaration of war,” Liberals would solemnly opine that disputing The First Black Constitutional Scholar proves my utter ignorance of law and history.

So I’ll just say “it’s a dumb idea” and let it go at that.

Joe Doakes

If progressivism built the economy like it builds rhetorical gotchas, this country would be humming along right now.

The “Governor” Dayton Pool

UPDATE: The contest now has a prize.

The winner of this contest gets a $150 gift certificate at the St. Paul Grill. So you can eat – for a night, anyway – like the DFL plutocrats who rule you!

Gift certificate courtesy the sponsorship of…

… Well, I can’t actually say. They want to remain anonymous. I can neither confirm nor deny that it’s the Koch brothers. I can also neither confirm nor deny that is Grover Norquist.

RULES UPDATE: When the prize was nothing but bragging rights, I wasn’t going to fuss too much about duplicate entries.

However, now that there’s an actual prize, I will allow people with duplicate entries to make one change to their submission.

——-

Now, if you’ve followed Minnesota politics this past four years, you know that Mark Dayton has been “Governor” is the same sense that Danny Bonaduce was the “bassist” for the Partridge Family.  He’s been a marionette, a flapping jaw revealing the will of the special interests who installed him in office.

And his health is not at all good.

And once he cut the crap and made it official by bringing Tina Flint Smith on as his running mate (putting Yvonne something or other out to pasture), the plan’s been pretty much common knowledge:  ”Governor” Dayton is going to resign and turn the office over to Tina “The Butcher” Flint Smith.

The only real question is when.

And that calls for a pool.

The Pool:  Pick the date that Mark Dayton resigns from office.  Whoever is closest wins, and earns – I dunno, a drink from me when we have another get-together.

Closest – before or after the actual retirement, counted in calendar days – wins.

Leave your predictions in the comment section, in the form of a date and year.

Example:  July 1, 2015 (that’s my prediction, BTW).  I’ll make sure this thread gets saved for the long haul – not that I (obviously) think we’ll need to save it for that long…

The deadline will be the beginning of the next session.

UPDATE:  See current selections and standings here. 

 

Why I’m A Second Amendment Voter

And, in a sense, why I’m a conservative. 

Yesterday was a double-anniversary in Germany; the fall of the Wall, and of Kristallnacnt, the 1938 pogrom that marked the active, public advent of the Holocaust, during which Jews, unarmed by force of law, were beaten, brutalized and murdered, their shops and homes ransacked, and the value of a Jewish life set at “lower than dog”.

Some Second Amendment activists note that Germany had strict gun control.  Anti-gunners chirp that guns were legal in Germany.  Second Amendment activists who’ve actually read the history respond that yes, Germans could own firearms – but they were closely registered.  And when the Nuremberg Laws banned guns in the hands of Jews, the Germans knew exactly where to go to find them. 

Just as they do with every community of desired victims around the world:

 And that is precisely the point the Real Americans are making; “gun control” doesn’t so much “control” “gun violence” as it redistributes the capacity for lethal force away from unfashionable minorities.

Like black Americans.  “Gun safety” efforts in America, since colonial times have served almost entirely to disarm black people.

And law-abiding black people in places like Chicago, Camden and Detroit are largely disarmed.  And at the mercy of the criminals among us. 

Which is, of course, the goal.

So that’s why, even before I voted Conservative, I voted Second Amendment.

The Muted Celebration

It was 25 years ago yesterday that the Berlin Wall fell.

I was in a not-so-great place in November of 1989.  But I watched the news – as I’d been watching the gathering disintegration of the Warsaw Pact, and of the “Second World”.

And seeing the stories of the swirling vortex of history into which Communism was falling…:

…even I, a simple nightclub DJ from northeast Minneapolis, knew something big was going on.

Even today, watching the footage, and watching Germans celebrating, I feel moved.  It was one of the most amazing events of my lifetime.

Of course, I had a dog in the fight:

That dog was, of course, freedom.  I was on the side that supported it.

For years, though, the mainstream media always seemed torn about the fall of the wall, the fall of communism.  I remember in 1992, Tom Brokaw reporting on economic problems in Poland – after three whole years of freedom, after 45 in slavery – and solemnly declaring that Eastern Europe’s experiment with economic freedom was a failure.

I wondered if it was merely myopia.  But no – it seems the American media had trouble processing the fall of the Wall because they largely supported the wrong side.

 

Fruitcake. Literal. Not Government.

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

I need advice from SITD readers.

For nearly 20 years, I’ve ordered brandy-soaked Monastery Fruitcake from the Cistercian Monks at Holy Cross Abbey in Virginia. My mother served it to her old lady friends and their verdict was “It’s very good for store-bought,” which, coming from those people, is the second-highest possible rating behind “as good as my Mother used to make.”

The monks aren’t selling fruitcake this year. They’ve suspended fruitcake production for 2014 to embark on a spiritual renewal to deepen their commitment to monastic life. Arrrgh! Okay, yes, monks, spiritual, I get it. But where will I get my fruitcake???!!!

Recommendations?

Joe Doakes

They can’t possibly be the only fruitcake making monks in America, can they?