Restraint

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

I must be getting old.  I hear lies and remember hearing them before.

Bill Clinton wanted to ban “cop-killer” bullets in the 90’s.   Barack Obama wants to ban cop-killer bullets now.

Still not one cop killed by those bullets, yet the lie is recycled as if nobody ever heard it told, or heard it refuted.  Does the entire country have Alzheimer’s?  Can’t anybody remember we went through this once before, and why it was dumb then so it’s just as dumb now?

Interestingly, public reaction to the lie has changed.  In Bill Clinton’s day, everybody was on board with supporting local law enforcement.  Nowadays, a lot more people seem to think “Politicians and the media promise me cops are racists who delight in shooting Gentle Giants holding their hands up, so why should cops get special protection?”  Lot more push-back and ATF was much quicker to pull the ban proposal “for further study.”

It boils down to a difference in philosophy:

Liberals believe that if you tear down enough of the institutions that brought order out of chaos, the result will be utopia.

I suspect that’s too optimistic – I suspect Heinlein and Burke were right, the result will be a reversion to chaos.

Joe Doakes

Part of it – the liberal part – is as Joe describes.

There’s also a more libertarian streak to the GOP that didn’t exist 20 years ago.  While the GOP still has all sorts of law-enforcement fanboys who figure if the cops say, do, or arrest it, they must be right, there are a few more who believe restraint is in order.

One Morning At Starbucks

SCENE: Mitch BERG walks into a Starbucks and approaches the order counter.  Moonbeam BIRKENSTOCK, the barrista, is behind the counter.

BERG:  Large light roast and some of that lemon cake, please.

BIRKENSTOCK:  Sure.  But first – what do you think about race?

BERG:  Huh?

BIRKENSTOCK:  When did you first become aware of your race?

BERG:  The race I’m in to get to work?  About 45 minutes ago.

BIRKENSTOCK:  What?

BERG:  It’s a joke.  Research shows that race is among the first things babies perceive about people in the world around them.  Even tiny babies are uncomfortable around people that aren’t the same race as their parents.  So a form of “racism” – being uncomfortable around people like you – is born into human beings.

BIRKENSTOCK:  White babies?

BERG:  All babies.   And I think it holds true through peoples’ lives, and expands on itself.  People are more comfortable around people like them; they are uneasy around people who aren’t.  And it’s not just race – class is something babies learn later on – but race is a big one.  Some middle class whites are uncomfortable around blacks.  Middle-class blacks get nervous around blue-collar white people under certain circumstances.  Jennifer Lopez probably watches herself around people who still are “from the block”.  White MPR listeners avoid being around white people with leathers and Harley-Davidsons.

Everyone on earth – including Barristas who went to Carlton…

BIRKENSTOCK:  …eeeew.  I went to Saint Olaf!

BERG:   Exactly.  Now – could you leave a little room for cream…

BIRKENSTOCK:  What do you think about your privilege?

BERG:  My privilege?

BIRKENSTOCK:  White privilege!

BERG:  I think there’s a reason that black people – and white people with liberal guilt – talk about it, and Latinos, Asians, and African immigrants largely don’t.

BIRKENSTOCK:  They’re racists too!

BERG:  No, they and their ancestors largely came here of their own free will, while the African-Americans are culturally as well as geneologically descended from slaves.  And 150 years of emancipation and 50 years of full rights haven’t undone 500 years of cultural damage.  So the question is, what do you do about it?

BIRKENSTOCK:  Have I asked you about your privilege yet?

BERG:  The privilege is this:  I’m descended from a culture that, going back almost 1,500 years, was dominated by a patriarchal society that was ruled by a warrior elite and venerated fighting skill and still doesn’t have a word for “relax, man”, but had more words for “combat” than Eskimos have for “snow” or the Irish have for “vomit”.  And between geography, the market, and my ancestors’ skill at killing their enemies, nobody managed for the most part to enslave my ancestors.  And the biggest thing I have to say about privilege is that I’m sorry for those whose ancestors and their matriarchal, hunter-gatherer societies were unable to protect their people from slavery.

But what do you want me to do about it now?

BIRKENSTOCK:  So…do you think your choice of coffee is itself racist?

BERG:  (Turns and walks out the door)

BIRKENSTOCK:  Can I interest you in the new Cold Play CD?

(And SCENE)

Priorities

David “Iowahawk” Burge writes a rare, “not funny” tweet:

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And he’s spent more time and effort fighting domestic dissent in the US – via the IRS’ gundecking conservative groups’ free speech via tax and campaign law and attacking dissenters, via “net neutrality”, and via his eternal campaign’s patrolling masses of droogs (in and out of the media), than he spent bringing free speech to the people of Iran, Venezuela, Cuba or anyplace else.

It’s Back

“Stand Your Ground” is back.

The bill – which would do nothing but remove the “duty to retreat” from self-defense on your property and in your car – was slandered as a “Shoot First” bill three years ago when it was passed by a bipartisan majority in both chambers (which, as an aside, is positive proof that the opposition was looking for the stupid vote; does anyone knows what happens to the person who shoots second?).  Governor Messinger Dayton issued a veto that was bought and paid for by big anti-gun interests; the metrocrats that controlled the Legislature at the time didn’t override him.

This year’s edition has a bipartisan slate of authors, a decisive majority of support in the House, and enough support in the Senate to make it interesting…

…and a governor – Tina Flint Smith – who will veto it forthwith (by pulling wires attached to Mark Dayton’s writing hand).

Of course, the point with this bill – and Senator Branden Petersen’s “Constitutional Carry” bill – is to do what the Second Amendment movement did over the previous two DFL-controlled sessions; rack up anti-gun votes by DFLers in greater Minnesota.  The DFL got trounced outstate in the 2014 elections in large part on the strength of gun votes; it can happen in the Senate in 2016.

Which is exactly how we got “Shall Issue” carry permits 12 years ago.

I worry at times that the lessons from the Carry Permit battle have been lost to a generation of pro-gun activists.  Shall Issue took from 1995 to 2003 (and again in 2005) to pass.  Eight years (with another year of maneuvering around a pet DFL judge).  It involved playing political chess, not checkers.

So suit up, people.  Winning your freedom isn’t for the faint of heart.

Rewarding Failure

After four years of abject failure, the St. Paul public school district renewed superintendent Valeria Silva’s contract earlier this week.

And it’s a nice one, indeed:

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Photo courtesy Bob Murphy

8% over four years – which, with compounding, is over 10%.

People who are actually accomplishing anything aren’t getting raises like that.

Lousy graduation rates. Unchanged achievement gap.

Money well spent.

Notice

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

I’ve been threatening to quit the Minnesota State Bar Association for years but chickened out because I get my life insurance through them and I must remain a member to keep the insurance. But I recently got insurance through AAA – I don’t need MSBA anymore. And from the way they act, they don’t need me, either.

When I joined, the Bar Association was a trade organization devoted to helping members be better lawyers. In the past 30 years, it has drifted leftward into Social Justice activism. That’s not why I joined.

I was especially pissed the leadership of the MSBA agitated for gay marriage, taking it upon themselves to speak in my name without ever asking the membership for a vote.

In the March issue of Bench and Bar, the President reports MSBA has decided it should elevate its commitment to diversity and inclusion. MSBA hired a Diversity Director and starting this Spring, will be asking renewing members to self-identify on their online member profiles in four additional areas: Gender (male, female, transgender/gender non-conforming); Race; Sexual Orientation (straight, gay, or bi); and Disability. MSBA hopes collecting this information will quantify areas of disparity and provide concrete evidence for leaders to address inequities based on fact, not anecdote or conjecture.

None of this is any of their business, but if that’s where the organization wants to go, so be it. I don’t need to wait for the survey, I can tell you right now the MSBA has too many straight White cismales. Some of them need to quit.

Glad to be of service.

Joe Doakes

Because privilege!

Smell The Quality

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Main floor bathrooms at work flooded a few weeks back. Restoration has been on hold for weeks . . . waiting for tile.

What the hell, Menard’s has tile. Is this some special hand-made Italian marble tile? What are we waiting for? These are the main public restrooms for a public building – slap up some white subway tile and get them back in service.

They’re cutting tile now. Ceramic dust billowing, sucked up in the exhaust vents, distributed all over the building, everybody is sneezing.

You couldn’t cut it at night after the blowers are off, or on the weekend when nobody is around?

You couldn’t seal the bathroom exhaust vent and suck the dust out through a filter?

True, the dust is making all four floors of the building uninhabitable, but they’re a union shop and low bidder . . . so what’s the problem?

Un. Be. Lievable.

Joe Doakes

Someone’s got to pay those dues to the Teamsters…

Our National Monologue

In all of of this nation’s frenetic back-and-forth – usually just forth – over race, i’ve really just had one question, all all this time ”

What do you want me to do?

Only an idiot doesn’t recognize racism exists, in some form. And that’s above and beyond to the “We -ism” that is endemic to every human being in the world; the race of people around them is one of the first perceptions babies develop, with uneasiness about the difference following closely.

And white privilege exists, too. Of course, the roots of white privilege date back hundreds, maybe thousands of years, when wage Northern European societies developed into patriarchal, militaristic societies dominated by aggressive warrior cultures that were able to avoid being enslaved, for the most part, as societies, at a time when most sub-Saharan African societies were small, matriarchal, and ripe for the picking buy more aggressive societies.

That’s one of the greatest “privileges” a society can hand down to its offspring; a history of freedom.

So racism and privilege exists. Stipulated.

Now what?

Writing at The Daily Beast,” John McWhorter, in a long, excellent article, has the same questions:

However, one can thoroughly understand how racism works and still ask just what this laser focus on “White Privilege” is meant to achieve.

“This is messy work, but these conversations are necessary,” says Sandra Chapman, director of diversity and community at Little Red School House in New York City. OK—but why? Note that the answer cannot be, “So that whites will understand that they are the privileged … etc.” That makes as much sense as saying “Because!” So I’m going to dare to ask a simple question: What exactly are we trying to achieve with this particular lesson?

And the questions keep coming. I will urge you to read the whole thing.

Clearly All Of Minnesota’s Problems Have Been Solved

Because they have time for this:

A bipartisan Minnesota House proposal suggests the engraving on a statute of Christopher Columbus should be edited. It now reads “Discoverer of America.” The proposal says it should be re-written to read, “Landed in America.”

The bill is sponsored by DFLer John Persell, of Bemidji.  Who, to be fair, may be (fairly and accurately) representing for his Norwegian constituents, who may prefer to honor North America’s actual European discoveror, Leif Ericson.

Still.  They have the time for this?

Silent Language

Winning the battle for the English Language is always a challenge when you’re a conservative. The left understands, and wages without mercy, the war for the language.

And for the most part, the media reflects the left’s view of how language portrays things.

So it’s been interesting watching the media coverage of the raft of Gun Rights bills.  In a Twin Cities media that will refers to using ones’ carry permit as “packing heat” so frequently it’s beyond satirizable, there’ve been some improvements.

This past few weeks, a bill that would allow Minnesotans to join 39 other states in owning mufflers for their guns has been advancing though committee.

And it’s been interesting reading the headlines that local news organizations having been using for the story (in this case taken from online coverage); do they refer to gun mufflers with techical accuracy as “suppressors”, or with conspiratorial, theatrical scaremongering as “silencers”.

Here are some examples, with emphasis added by me:

So minor kudos to the Twin Cities media; at least as re the very basics of language, you’re coming around ever so slightly.

Now, if we could do something about using the term “packing heat”, like, ever…

Break Out Your Maroon Shirts

Tonight, and Thursday morning, the legislature is going to be debating a bill – HF722, sponsored by representative Jim Newburger – which would prevent government from confiscating civilian firearms during states of emergency.

This is no idle worry; after Hurricane Katrina, the police went door to door through the storm ravaged neighborhoods, confiscating peoples firearms, leaving them helpless in the face of looters and thugs.

There are going to be two rounds of hearings:

  • Tonight at 6 PM, in the Civil Law committee. This will be in room 500, at the State office building. You can park for free in lot AAA, at Aurora and rice, after 4 PM – and meters are generally open along John Ireland Boulevard after business hours, too.
  • Thursday morning at 10:15 AM in the Public Safety committee. This will be in room 10 at the state office building.

Second Amendment humans rights advocates are on the offensive, this session – but that doesn’t mean anything is a shoe in. Showing up at hearings, or calling your legislators, is still essential.  Maybe moreso than ever.

Any DFLer who votes against this bill is essentially tipping their hand; they won’t “waste a crisis”, and if offered the chance will use that crisis as an excuse to extort firearms from the law abiding citizen. They need to be held accountable for this 2016

Chicago: Going Greek?

After four years under firmer Obama Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, Chicago has run up an absolute mountain of debt, and is among the ranks of cities that could easily go bankrupt in the near future.

So naturally, inveterate democrat Chicago voters appear likely to go the Greek route, and kick the physical can down the road even further, appearing to favor someone even further to the left:

Three weeks remain before the April 7 runoff between Emanuel and Jesus “Chuy” Garcia, a Cook County commissioner and fellow Democrat whose candidacy is the vehicle for grievances against the mayor and his efforts to steer the city away from insolvency. Chicago has $20 billion in unfunded pension liabilities, a school system deep in deficit and a credit rating dropping toward junk. It’s in danger of being overwhelmed by debt unless it embraces onerous solutions that probably would include retirement benefit cuts and tax increases.

“I don’t think I’ve ever seen such financial uncertainty and so many moving parts all going on at once, and no one wanting to blink first by saying what he’s going to do about it,” said Donald Haider, a former Chicago finance director who ran for mayor in 1987.

Of course, they have to walk a very fine line; essentially, both have to campaign on who’s willing to be the most brazen about waiting for a federal bailout, without actually saying it.

Risky

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Found in an on-line bulletin board:

“Room available for the summer for a college aged girl to live with us for free in exchange for weekday child care. Text or call if this sounds like a good fit for you.  Contact Info: 651-xxx-xxxx”

Is this merely tax fraud, a Wage and Hour violation and a Sex Discrimination in Housing complaint; or it is an invitation to be sold into sexual slavery?  Or maybe just some well-intentioned Mac-Groveland DFLers, aghast at the already-obscene cost of non-union daycare?

Whatever, it absolutely cannot be legal to hire an Au Pair in Minnesota.  That would be, just, wrong, on so many levels.

Joe Doakes

Depends on the prosecutor and the (administrative law) “judge”, now, doesn’t it?

Word’s Getting Around

Heather Martens has never once made a substantial, true statement about firearms or the Second Amendment.

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Her testimony at the Minnesota House was more of the same: Martens claimed that silencers were “designed” to allow people to commit murder and get away with it.

Sure – in the same way that car mufflers were designed to allow hit-and-run drivers to sneak up on victims.

If you want real facts about suppressors, GOCRA as usual has the answers.

 

Inconceivable!

Two weeks away from the city minimum wage to $15 an hour, Seattle restaurants are dropping like, well, flies in soup.

Of course, minimum wage hike advocates are claiming it’s all just part of the normal attrition – ignoring the fact that the closings are running ahead of the normal rate of closures.

It’s reminiscent of 2005, when Minneapolis passed it’s smoking ban in bars and restaurants. There was a surge in bar closings – as patrons drove to bars in the suburbs, where until the state wide ban a few years later, you could still smoke.

Apologists for the ban said “bars close all the time!” Which is true. But conversations with bar owner after bar owner after bar owner who had just Tridar their establishments almost inevitably included the phrase:

The smoking ban was the final straw.

Hospitality is a tough business. In Seattle, it just got a lot tougher.

Long Overdue

To: The entire Minnesota state legislature
From: Many hypothetical, westbound Minnesotans who may have had to stop at gas stations on the east bank of the Red River every time they go back to visit their parents to transfer something that is perfectly legal on the east bank but is a felony on the west, and vice versa into the trunk.
Re: Reciprocity

You have a bill in the hopper that would do a job that the Public Safety commissioner was supposed to do over 10 years ago; make carry permits reciprocal between Minnesota and states whose permits are “substantially similar” to ours.

The Public Safety Commissioner 10 years ago took the most anal retentive possible view of “substantial similarity”, and made Minnesota permits reciprocal with an almost useless assortment of other states; Minnesota permits are no good in any of our neighbor states, and vice versa.  And the state of North Dakota created a special class of carry permit, expressly designed to conform to Minnesota law, to get Public Safety to honor NoDak permits (and vice versa).  Governor Flint-Smith’s Public Safety commissioner has ignored the legal imperative to change the rules accordingly.

You have a chance to fix that this session.

Please do.

Compare And Contrast

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Worst place in the world for a Black person to live:  Madison, Wisconsin.

So says Meaca Moore, a sociology student from Columbus, Ohio.

Oddly, Madison is only ranked 3rd on the Whitest Colleges In Americalist.

It’s too bad she was required to go there, and is prohibited from transferring.

Joe Doakes

Racism seems to be a little like “sexual harassment”; not only does it mean whatever the complainant wants it to mean, but the respondent’s intent is irrelevant.

It’s Your NARN; Do What You Wanna Do

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

Today on the show,

  • Dan Lattier from Better Ed will talk about how #blacklivesmatter, except perhaps to the education system
  • John Monson from Bill’s Gun Shop, talking about the Shooter Show, coming up in two weeks
  • Michael Schweigert and Pete Johnson on a voting rights lawsuit in Lino Lakes.

Don’t forget - King Banaian is on from 9-11AM on AM1570, and Brad Carlson has “The Closer” edition of the NARN Sundays from 1-3PM.

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

Join us!

An Ugly New Wrinkle

The shootings in Ferguson earlier this week were an ugly, new-ish wrinkle in the situation.

Among all the sturm und drang from the left about America’s gun laws and the sheer number of guns available in the US, the use of guns in demonstrations, even riots, is relatively rare.  It happens, of course; my old colleague John MacDougall reported carrying a gun with him when he covered the riots in North Minneapolis in 1968; some rioters shot at police during the LA riots.

But for the number of guns available in the US, very few of them over come out during periods of unrest.

Now,  I’m sure the shooters in the audience took note of this part of the story:

St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar said one officer was shot in the face, just below his right eye, with the bullet lodging behind his ear. The other officer was hit in the shoulder, and the bullet came out his back…Authorities believe the shots came from a handgun fired about 120 yards away. There were no suspects in custody.

120 yards?  With a handgun?

Either there’s a rogue SAS trooper or Olympic marksman in Ferguson,  or the “luckiest”, fluke-iest crook in the US, or two of the unluckiest cops – or someone was firing a pistol-caliber scoped carbine.

A Thought In Passing

Where “endless one-sided talk about principles” is checkers, “taking those principles to a legislature that’s at least partly full of people that disagree with you, and trying to turn those principles into policy” is chess.

And one of the big reasons I left the Libertarian Party, and criticize the “Liberty movement” so often these days, is not so much that so many of them play checkers (that’s true of most people in any party), but that so m any of their loudest voices have convinced themselves that playing chess instead of endless rounds of checkers is a moral offense and a distraction that diverts one from the purity of checkers.

They Bought Themselves An Internet

The FCC’s new internet rules cite a Soros-funded front group dozens and dozens of times:

New internet regulations finally released by the Federal Communications Commission make 46 references to a group funded by billionaire George Soros and co-founded by a neo-Marxist…The term “Free Press” is mentioned 62 times in the regulations. Some are redundant mentions referring to the same Free Press activists’ comments in favor of more oversight. In total, the FCC cited Free Press’ pro-net neutrality arguments 46 times.

The FCC received more than 4 million public comments as it was weighing the net neutrality initiative, but Free Press and other activist groups have received the most attention by pressuring the FCC and the White House on behalf of their cause.

The Obama Administraiton is the most transparently corrupt administration in history.

Options

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Roughed out my taxes. Going to have to write a check to the IRS – not enough deductions.

I suppose I could
start a private charity to solicit giant donations – the blue arrowhead is helpful, find your friends! Or maybe just not pay the taxes.

But I’m not a Democrat. I need a side business where I can lose some money on paper and write off expenses such as bar association dues.

Any suggestions?

Joe Doakes

I got nothing for you, man.

Anyone?