Come For The MNSure; Stay For The Corruption

As the MNGOP rode back into a legislative majority on the collapse of MNSure, Donald Trump rode to office in DC promising to “drain the swamp”.

I’m not sure if the next GOP candidate for governor will make a similar promise.

But they sure could.  As Jeff Johnson points out in an op-ed in the Strib, the swamp – the cronyism, the incestuous DFL racket – is no less present.

In 2015, Dayton appointed the husband of his chief of staff to be the new chairman of the Metropolitan Council. Previously, the Met Council chairman position was part time and paid just over $61,000 per year. With this new appointment, however, the position was made full time and the annual salary was increased to $145,000.

Later in 2015, Dayton provided significant pay increases to his entire cabinet, most in the range of 25 percent to 30 percent. A salary increase from $120,000 to $155,000 per year was the most common increase granted by the governor. When both Republican and DFL leaders complained of these increases, Dayton called such concerns “beyond the theater of the absurd.”

Earlier this year, we learned that Dayton had quietly provided taxpayer-funded severance payments to several of his commissioners when they resigned from his cabinet. He provided more than $33,000 in severance to one commissioner when she resigned to pursue “a new opportunity,” $27,000 to another (whom Dayton appointed a couple of years later to another executive government position) and more than $18,000 to a third who had served in her position for only eight months before resigning.

Most recently, Dayton removed from the U.S. Bank Stadium board a member who has been critical of the chairwoman of that board (a Dayton appointee and his former deputy chief of staff) and the executive director of that board (a longtime DFL operative) both being paid by the taxpayers to do essentially the same job. Together, the two make nearly $300,000 per year.

The DFL has turned state government into a jobs program for useless apparatchiks.

The Most Ironic Berg’s Seventh Law Violation

It’s long been one of the Dems’ favorite – and most childish – chanting points to say that Republicans, being stodgy fundamentalist WASPS, want to make sex impossible to have.

If you follow Berg’s Seventh Law, you know the Democrats are actually doing something worse (or actually enacting the slur).

And you would, as always, be right.  

(And not for the first time).

Don’t Let The Door Hit You

Barbara Boxer is leaving Congress.

Unfortunately, that departure is a result of being feted at a retirement party, rather than frog-walked out of her office by the FBI.

But gone is gone – not that it matters much given California’s delegation.    It remains blinkered far-left, and is still home to some of the our worst Congresspeople, even absent Boxer.

Boxer moved to the Senate a generation ago as female candidates rode a burst of popularity, she noted in her official farewell address Wednesday. She departs just after the defeat of the first female presidential nominee.
She entered public life when it was considered a “noble” profession, she reminded listeners, and will leave just before the inauguration of a man who succeeded in large part by denouncing politicians.

The sooner that idea is mocked out of existence, the better we all will be.

Representing the people isn’t dishonorable.  Turning government into a cash cow for one’s self and one’s special interests is no more “honorable” than being a pimp.

Yet Again The Sky Fails To Fall

My prediction – last week’s teapot-tempest about Trump talking with the Taiwanese president will redound to everyone’s benefit.

So far, so good:

But rumors of apocalypse were overstated. Beijing’s response, besides requesting that the U.S. not let [Taiwan’s presidentTsai Ing-wen pass through the U.S. in January on her way to Guatemala, has been muted. That is to be expected. China has more to lose than to gain from an overreaction. For Donald Trump’s domestic critics, though, the opposite tends to be true. It is a telling comment on America’s political Left that they have reacted more strongly to Donald Trump’s potentially “undiplomatic” phone call to the head of a vibrant democracy than to the regime in Beijing trying to crush that democracy. Visitors to Taiwan will find a fairly elected president, a vigorous legislature, an open press, religious freedom, the fifth-largest economy in Asia, and a unique culture that straddles East and West. A little over 100 miles to the west, visitors will find a one-party dictatorship, directly descended from the terrors of Chairman Mao, that “disappears” political dissidents and harvests the organs of Falun Gong adherents.

 

Selling out democracies because of a precedent set by one of our least capable presidents is incredibly stupid policy.

500 Turbocharged Weaselpower

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Levis bans guns in its stores  Doesn’t affect me, I don’t shop there anyway.

The reason is peculiar.  A person with a permit to carry had an accidental discharge in one of their stores so they’re asking customers not to bring guns into their stores.  “You don’t need a gun to try on jeans. . . it is with the safety and security of our employees and customers in mind . . . .” 

 If it actually were an issue of safety, then all guns should be banned, including cops (they have their own problems with accidental discharges).  But no, Levis is fine with cops’ guns, it’s only permitted carriers that are asked not to bring guns to the store.

 Will Levis install metal detectors to detect someone carrying a gun in his waistband?  Will they enforce the rule?  Nope, just announcing a policy that they request honest, law-abiding people obey.  Basically, they don’t want my trade.  Sounds as if I was right to shop elsewhere.

 Another thought, from a buddy who said: 

 Since the event that triggered this notion was somebody who had no place to safely store a firearm while trying on clothes, the responsible solution would be to provide appropriate gun lockers at the dressing rooms.  You know, like the lockers in jail house lobbies, where a gun is likely to be carried to that point but is not allowed beyond.  

 Sure, lockers would cost money.  But if this were a case of needing transgender dressing rooms, Levis would have built them already.  This issue is not a matter of cost, it’s a matter of cost-per-unit-of-politically-correctness.  There’s no convenient expression for that.  We know that 550 foot-pounds per second = one Horsepower.  What is a suitable expression to shorthand penny-pinching-virtue-signaling?  One Dickhead?  One Weasel?

 Joe Doakes

I think coming up with a measurement system for virtue-signaling would be an epic public service.

Faster

North Carolina congressman starts the ball rolling on carry permit reciproity:

Rep. Richard Hudson, R-North Carolina, says he is preparing legislation that would allow those with concealed carry permits in their state to cross state lines.

According to the Daily Caller, Hudson’s legislation would allow people with a state-issued concealed carry license to carry a handgun to any other state that allows concealed carry if the person is not banned from possessing or transporting a firearm by federal law.

For your less logically gifted liberal friends, what this means is this:  people who have proven that they have clean criminal records, and often training in self-defense law will have their carry permits recognized by other states, just like drivers licenses.  These are people whose crime rate is two orders of magnitude less than then general public; the record over thfis past twenty years, in every single state, shows that carry permittees are vastly, vastly safer per capita, than the general public.

Of course, the Dems will filibuster it in the Senate, if it comes up to a vote there.

Let them.  Record every worfd for 2018.   Non-urban Demcoxrats will go extinct.

Sanctuary

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Being a sanctuary city is all the rage. It means local officials won’t enforce federal immigration laws.  Mayor Coleman claims it’s a states-rights issue: the feds can’t force local officials to do their jobs. Glad to see he’s come around on that point, it’s progress when a Democrat argues our for our side.  But why such a limited scope?  Why not become a true sanctuary?  Illegal aliens bring labor, but they also consume services.  Why not shelter counterfeiters?  Think how the local economy could boom.  Drug smugglers could employ lots of people if they no longer feared being arrested on federal narcotics charges.  Hell, let’s go all the way and let people sell high flow shower heads and toilets!  Think of the revenue for the water department!

 Joe doakes

Sort of like an O’Connor System, but more down-market and less asking criminals to behave.

NPR’s “On The Media”: Fake Analysis Of “Fake News”

There are a few things in the American media for which I have more contempt than the WNYC  program “On The Media”. I’ve written about it in the past – it’s an NPR show, hosted by Bob Garfield and Brooke Gladstone, that seems to be based around the premise the journalist is a noble order of high priest of information, having a salonic conversation about the rarefied heights of American journalism.

In point of fact, it’s a Democrat party propaganda mill, no different than “Occupy Democrats” or any of the left’s other “fake news” mills.

Prosecutors exhibit A? This past weekend’s broadcast, which focused on “not normalizing Trump”.

And as a Tfump non-supporter and someone who was taught journalism by old-school practitioners who actually valued telling the story, rather than achieving a political goal,, I get it.

Of course, when OTM talks about “not normalizing” someone like Donald Trump, not a word will be mentioned about the media having normalized bald-faced support for Hillary Clinton, at a level that we have once been considered a crime against journalism.

Bonus visit bit of nausea induction: as a guest, Bob Garfield interviewed George Lakoff, a noted linguist who pointed out the techniques that Trump has mastered in turning  peoples opinions on their heads, and the need to not normalize that sort of thing…

Of course, Garfield didn’t mention that Lakoff has been working, and as I recall been paid for quite some time now, to try to do exactly what the program complains about Trump doing; trying  to turn language to the service of Democrats.

Apparently they didn’t think we needed to know that.

Mass Flagellation

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

If Liberals truly believe White Privilege is a thing, that they actually are morally unqualified to hold their jobs and live their lifestyles because of the vestiges of racism in America’s past, then they ought to pull their kids out of honor programs and STEM schools. They ought to refuse to support them in college, insisting they give up their places for people who are morally deserving: blacks, illegal aliens, gays.

They won’t, of course. The people who insist they are guilty also refuse to do penance. Somebody else pays the penance, someone less gifted, less fortunate, less connected.

What happened in this election is the people paying the price decided not to pay it anymore. You feel guilty that your parents treated Blacks poorly at lunch counters? Fine, you make up for it by making your kids drop out, we’re not going to. You give up your job, we’ve had enough of that.

You can’t hold the moral high ground by confessing the crime but making someone else do the time.

Joe doakes

I think most of them think self-flagellation (but mostly flagellating the less worthy in their ethnic group) is penance enough.

Lie First, Lie Always: Non-Sequitur Violence

My theory:  the Democrats, and left-leaning groups in general, are turning their focus to making big, broad, platitudinous statements designed to sound good to people who don’t really think about issues all that hard.

Last week was a case in point; the Strib was pimping a piece purporting to show the costs of “gun violence”, as well as some proposed “solutions”.

The piece – an “analytical report” by Americans for Responsible Solutions, which is the Gabby Giffords checkbook advocacy group – claims to run down the costs of “gun violence”.

And it starts off with a local example:

One recent tragedy at a small law firm in the Cathedral Hill area of St. Paul illustrates this all too well. On April 7, 2016, a disgruntled former client, Ryan David Petersen, entered the offices of North Star Criminal Defense, located on the second floor of the historic Dacotah Building, intending to kill either Dan Adkins, one of the firm’s managing partners, or Chase Passauer, the firm’s office manager. Petersen arrived at the office before Dan did and directed his focus on Chase—shooting him eight times with a .40 caliber handgun. The 23-year-old died in his office chair.3 Chase, a recent graduate of the University of Minnesota, had wanted to become a lawyer to help others before his life was cut short by…

Let’s stop right there.

Who killed Chase Passauer?  Was Ryan Peterson:

  1. A pedestrian who found a loaded gun unattended on the street, and stopped into the law office to seek help?
  2. A Quaker missionary who found himself drawn to a gun at Cabela’s and, hypnotized by its dangerous allure, decided he just had to kill someone?
  3. A DFL activist practicing for the post-Trump revolution?

We’ll come back to that.

Wait!  You Ignored Change Under Bus Seats!:  The report goes into some depth on the costs of single incidents of “gun violence” – noting that the medical costs of even a single episode of “gun violence” are astronomical; the average cost of a fatal shooting is over $40K; of non-fatal shootings, over $60,000.

Well, yeah – the cost of healthcare is pretty high for everyone.   It’s been in all the papers.

It also notes that the cost of investigating the crimes, trying to cases, and incarcerating offenders is way, way up there:

According to estimates by PIRE, the average cost of a police  investigation and related criminal justice expenses for a  fatal shooting is $439,217.13 Criminal justice expenses include salaries and benefits for public officials such as judges, prosecutors, and public defenders, as well as the cost of incarceration, which in a federal facility averages more than $30,000 per year for each inmate.14 Minnesota taxpayers  spend approximately $45,688 per year incarcerating each inmate in state prisons

Yep.  Lawyers, judges and prisons don’t come cheap.

So the alternative is…what?

Does harassing the law-abiding gun owner in any way address this?  Other than creating more felons?

The report also goes through costs to employers – like Mr. Passauer’s – as well as, incredibly, lost wages.  Not only those of the victim…:

According to data derived from the PIRE cost of injury model, the average value of lost work for a single fatal shooting is $1,742,722, while for a nonfatal shooting requiring hospitalization, the figure is $81,559.
When a gunshot victim…

…but also the perp:

…or incarcerated perpetrator is an income earner for his or her family—especially the primary breadwinner—the impact of lost wages on the family can be severe.

Ah.  Clearly the answer is to not send murderers to jail.

Well, no.  That’s not what the report suggests.

Where Have We Seen This?:  The report does suggest “solutions”.

Any guesses?

The Economic Cost of Gun Violence in Minnesota identifies three sets of solutions, each addressing a specific risk factor:  universal background checks for gun sales, neighborhood revitalization programs, and hospital-based violence intervention strategies. The investment required to implement these lifesaving solutions is minuscule compared to the yearly cost of gun violence in our state.

“Hospital based violence intervention strategies” – trying to talk victims and perpetrators out of lives of violence – might be less stupid.  As the report rather un-PC-ly notes:

 “Interpersonal shootings disproportionately involve young men of color living in underserved neighborhoods, so any effective violence intervention strategy must focus attention on this at-risk population.

…where “underserved neighborhoods” is PC code for “crime-ridden cesspool in a city ruined by decades of Democrat rule”, dealing with those actually involved in the vast majority of criminal shootings might actually make sense.

On the other hand, we’ve been trying “neighborhood revitalization” for decades.  It turns out that prosperity – organic, market prosperity, not government subsidy – and law and order, and lots of both, is the only real neighborhood revitalization program that works – and that doesn’t happen in inner cities run by Democrats.

Ever.

Of course, that could happen.

But as to “universal background checks?”

I’d love to ask the people who wrote this report:  “So tell me how the people who are committing the vast majority of the crime today – who overwhelmingly use guns that are stolen, purchased by straw buyers, or, in the world of gangs, often shared among gang members in multiple crimes – who aren’t currently getting background checks, are supposed to start getting them?

Which takes us back to Chase Passauer.

A Minor Technicality:  In re the murder of Mr. Passauer, the report notes that Ryan Peterson was, in fact…

a convicted felon who was legally  prohibited from possessing a gun.

Who would not have taken a background check.

Whether his neighborhood was revitalized, and whether a social worker talked with him at a hospital, or not.

Half The Story

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Google “Trump salary” and you’ll see endless articles claiming Trump is waiving the $400,000 annual salary as President.  No, he’s volunteering to become A Dollar A Year Man.  That’s an important distinction, as it evokes historical parallels to great men who sacrificed to save the nation in time of peril.

 Of course, no journalist knows that.  Or if they did, they certainly can’t admit it, because that would mean Trump is a statesman and a patriot; we can’t have that.

 Joe Doakes

As Glenn Reynolds puts it, “if you remember that they’re Democrat operatives with bylines, it all makes sense”>

 

At Least Neville Chamberlain Realized He Was Wrong

Our chattering classes had a projectile aneurysm over the weekend, when President-elect Trump spoke with Taiwan’s president:

Mr Trump’s decision to turn his back on four decades of US protocol on Taiwan and speak directly to a president of Taiwan will stun policymakers in Beijing.

Since his election last month, they have struggled to understand who is advising Donald Trump on Asia and what his China policy will look like.

This move will turn concern into alarm and anger.

Beijing sees Taiwan as a province. Denying it any of the trappings of an independent state is one of the key priorities of Chinese foreign policy.

It was about thirty years ago when Ronald Reagan sent the “elites” into a similar state of incontinence by walking out of the Rejkjavik talks with Mikhail Gorbachev.

The “elites” said it was a prelude to a nuclear war – pure madness.

The opposite was, of course, the case.  It was a called bluff that started a chain of events that led, five tears later, to the downfall of communism.

Of course, Donald Trump is no Ronald Reagan – but then, either are the current administration’s foreign policy hamsters.

Our alllies on the Pacific Rim – Korea, Japan, Singapore, the Philippines, Thailand, Australia, Malaysia, Indonesia – have been wondering where DC’s priorities are, and whether the US can be counted on re the Chinese for the past eight years.   Obama’s Chamberlain-like policy made the region less, not more, stable.

Will Trump’s “gaffe” make things better or worse?  I don’t know – and it’s for damn sure the authors of this past eight years worth of foreign policy don’t, either.  But if they say the sky is blue, I’m inclined to believe it’s red.

Carry On My Wayward NARN

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

Today on the show, I’ll be in for Brad Carlson, who filled in for me yesterday. I’ll be discussing:

  • The fraud of the “Alt Right”.

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:

When Tuned In Today

I’m off on assignment today.  Brad Carlson will be filling in on the NARN from 1-3PM on AM1280.

What’s he got up his sleeve?  Tune in!

I‘ll be doing Brad’s Sunday show, 2-3PM tomorrow.

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!

They Tend To Be Shoddy Anyway

Levi Strauss and company has opted to make their stores criminal-safe.

Moms Want Action is all tingly about it – which, of course, means royalties for stock photo vendors!~

levipansies

Know how you can tell it’s a stock photo? Because the model is 40 years younger than any female in “Moms Want Action” .

To be honest, I haven’t bought Levis in years; for the same money, Duluth jeans are much much better, and given their clientele, they’re way too smart to post their stores.

But if you’re so inclined, drop Levi Strauss a line.  Their Facebook page is a good place to send a message.

 

Mark My Words

Someday, when there is a post-cold-war style reckoning with the past crimes of the American media – and I realize this may be more an “afterlife” kind of thing – the ongoing effort by the American media to slander people not like them, politically speaking, will be an entire wing in the museum.

Let’s allow up front that in a nation of 320 million people there will be loonies of every description afoot, and that not everyone deals with frustration, bigotry or hatred well or constructively.

With that out of the way?

There is no wave of Trump-inspired hatred in this country.  The media is, er, trumping up a series of:

…into a “story”, and spinning it into a largely fictional narrative.

Why?

To wag the dog.  To try to create the movement that they’re reporting on.  To try to do for hate what they did for Armenian valley girls and Flava Flav.

Will it work?

Well, their efforts didn’t give us an Empress President HIllary.  But that may have been a lucky break.

And “luck” isn’t a plan.

Drip Drip Drip

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

The authorities insist there is no evidence the Ohio State attacker had a membership card from ISISAnother member of Local 473 of the Amalgamated Union of Lone Wolf Muslim Terrorists.

 Seriously, how many “lone wolves” does it take to make a pack?  Can’t anybody in the media admit there’s a pattern to this violence?

 Joe Doakes

Not just a pattern – a motivator.

ISIS is specifically targeting people in the west who are susceptible to being teased into becoming martyrs to do exactly this sort of thing, via their online and media outreach.  Their website and (very slick) magazine show would-be martyrs how to carry out mass shootings (likely including San Bernardino, Orlando and, quite possibly, Saint Cloud), vehicle attacks (like Nice, France and of course OSU), IEDs (like the Boston Marathon), and, well, stabblings.

So  yes – it’s an asynchronous pack.

And we know that the only response to a pack is a bigger, better, and still more civilized pack.  Which at least some people in Ohio get.

A Little More Equal

When Governor Dayton, by way of trying to pitch the state on spending hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars to upgrade Ziggy Wilf’s real estate for him, referred to the new US Bank Stadium as “The Peoples Stadium”, many of us couldn’t miss the inevitable reference connecting it to anything else labeled “Peoples”, like the “Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea” or “peoples Liberation have army”.

When I made the association, it was pretty much just a reflex based on the usage of the term.

Of course, I knew it would eventually turn into the real thing – a publicly paid amenity that would favor our ruling class.

Was I right?

When it comes to parallels between the USSR and the Minnesota DFL, aren’t I always?

Good News, Bad News

Good News:  After five years of “economic growth” under Obama, the economy might actually take off again.

The US economy will grow by 2.3 percent in 2017 and 3.0 percent in 2018, said the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, revising its earlier forecast.

That compares to gross domestic product growth of 1.5 percent this year, according to the OECD.

Bad News:  Because Keynesianism:

The Republican property tycoon’s team has said he will devote $550 billion to rebuilding decrepit infrastructure.

Really Bad News:  And that’s all presuming the Democrats don’t call in their markers with Janet Yellen.