All In This Together. Yuuup.

Vice President – and let’s be honest, future President, most likely after January 2023, so she has the statutory opportunity to “serve” two full terms of her own – Harris, expressing her deep empathy for working parents with kids at home:

If homeschooling, charter school and private school activists don’t start using this in their ads, they have only themselves to blame.

Logic

No less an authority than Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream informs me that public schools are hotbeds of systemic racism.

No less an authority than President Trump informed me that racism is evil.

Plainly, then, the conclusion must be obvious: public schools are evil.

Minnesota spends more than $13 Billion per year promoting evil.

We should stop doing that. 

We should close all public schools at once.

Parents who care about education and who can afford to send their children to private school, will.

Parents who care about education but who can’t afford to send their children to private school, will home school.

Parents who care about education but who can’t afford to send their children to private school nor to home school them will be out of luck and their children will grow up ignorant and poor like their parents who probably were Trump voters anyway, so they deserve it.

Teachers, administrators, support staff laid off when the schools close, should learn to code.

Joe Doakes

The thing about calling racism “structural” is you gotta get rid of the “structure” to fix it.

Like Charlie Brown Lining Up For A Kick

I’ve been citing Turkish-via-UNC/Chapel Hill sociologist Zeynep Tufekci’s work on bringing actual scientific thought to the response to Covid almost as long as there’s been a pandemic.

There is literally zero evidence that Tufekci’s latest article in the Atlantic, 5 Pandemic Mistakes We Keep Repeating, is aimed at the Walz administration and the MDH. But as Texas re-opens, Florida’s approach is largely vindicated, the wheels come off the California and New York approaches, and vaccines start to dribble out to the population, the thought of copying a link to the piece to the Governor is tempting.

As Walz (and his apparent public health mentor, Fauci) keep warning of more and more armageddons two weeks away, Tufekci takes us back to another pandemic, and its denouement

When the polio vaccine was declared safe and effective, the news was met with jubilant celebration. Church bells rang across the nation, and factories blew their whistles. “Polio routed!” newspaper headlines exclaimed. “An historic victory,” “monumental,” “sensational,” newscasters declared. People erupted with joy across the United States. Some danced in the streets; others wept. Kids were sent home from school to celebrate.

One might have expected the initial approval of the coronavirus vaccines to spark similar jubilation—especially after a brutal pandemic year. But that didn’t happen. Instead, the steady drumbeat of good news about the vaccines has been met with a chorus of relentless pessimism.

The problem is not that the good news isn’t being reported, or that we should throw caution to the wind just yet. It’s that neither the reporting nor the public-health messaging has reflected the truly amazing reality of these vaccines. There is nothing wrong with realism and caution, but effective communication requires a sense of proportion—distinguishing between due alarm and alarmism; warranted, measured caution and doombait; worst-case scenarios and claims of impending catastrophe. We need to be able to celebrate profoundly positive news while noting the work that still lies ahead. However, instead of balanced optimism since the launch of the vaccines, the public has been offered a lot of misguided fretting over new virus variants, subjected to misleading debates about the inferiority of certain vaccines, and presented with long lists of things vaccinated people still cannot do, while media outlets wonder whether the pandemic will ever end.

Remember last year? When some public health authorities were treating Covid like World War 2, with massive sacrifices, a potential (and, a year later, realized) horrific cost, and a goal for us all to pull toward – victory?

That went by the boards. Pushing to get back to normal – a “normal” that for the vast majority of Americans was as good as it’d been in a loooong time, last February – got replaced by telling people to hunker down for, well, the War on Terror. An endless, endemic, dreary plod.

Which has had terrible effects – skyrocketing addiction and suicide, rampant crime, and crushing depression among school-age kids and adults. The pandemic has brought out the best in some Americans – and forced the rest into the most dehumanizing humdrum imaginable to a First Worlder.

So it’s worth looking at the five mistakes Tufekci notes that we just keep failing, and perhaps stop doing them.

They are:

Risk Compensation – the notion that if you make people safer, they’ll just abuse that safety. The theory that if you put a seatbelt in a car, people will take that additional margin of safety and use it to drive faster and more recklessly.

It appeals to the “expert class”‘s paternalism – why become an expert if you can’t warn people “you’ll shoot your eye out with that thing”? As Tufekci puts it:

[Risk Compensation is] contrarian and clever, and fits the “here’s something surprising we smart folks thought about” mold that appeals to, well, people who think of themselves as smart. Unsurprisingly, such fears have greeted efforts to persuade the public to adopt almost every advance in safety, including seat belts, helmets, and condoms.

But time and again, the numbers tell a different story: Even if safety improvements cause a few people to behave recklessly, the benefits overwhelm the ill effects. In any case, most people are already interested in staying safe from a dangerous pathogen. Further, even at the beginning of the pandemic, sociological theory predicted that wearing masks would be associated with increased adherence to other precautionary measures—people interested in staying safe are interested in staying safe—and empirical research quickly confirmed exactly that. Unfortunately, though, the theory of risk compensation—and its implicit assumptions—continue to haunt our approach, in part because there hasn’t been a reckoning with the initial missteps.

Minnesota government’s paternalistic streak is gonna be a hard thing to overcome on this front.

Rules Over Mechanisms – This one is squarely on Walz and his regime. His focus on all the things we need to do to move his array of knobs and levers, like a Skinnerian behavioral experiment, tying actions to rewards – economic and personal freedom – was classic Minnesota passive-aggression. Even moreso, the state’s refusal to share the code for the model that predicted 20,000 dead at best, and a better figure of 70,000 fatalities by July, on the grounds that people might just find different results – which was the moment this state’s effort lost all pretense of scientific legitimacy.

I said, early on – why not give people and businesses good information, and let them do what needed to be done, with just the minimal enforcement for flagrant-to-depraved behavior? It is, after all, what they did in states that battled the pandemic successfully – Florida, Texas, and the Dakotas (who, notwithstanding a surge of cases and fatalities in the fall, are in much better economic shape than Minnesota.

Even Wisconsin – where the governor’s emergency powers were tossed out by courts in short order, and which had to rely on people knowing how to protect themselves, and so told them how to do just that – is doing better by every measure that wasn’t worse before the pandemic.

Scolding and Shaming – What goverment’s approach has lacked in scientific rigor, it’s made up for in empowering the simultaneously least stable and most petty-authoritarian among us to find their inner Dwight Schrute. Tufekci:

How dare you go to the beach? newspapers have scolded us for months, despite lacking evidence that this posed any significant threat to public health. It wasn’t just talk: Many cities closed parks and outdoor recreational spaces, even as they kept open indoor dining and gyms. Just this month, UC Berkeley and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst both banned students from taking even solitary walks outdoors.

The first time I had some plush-bottom Karen scold me about putting my bag on the conveyor at the checkout at Target in Shoreview “before the cashier sanitized it” (after she’d spent five minutes arguing over a coupon), I realized there might be a scientific basis for this. Humans are adapted to be on the lookout for crises – the saber tooth tiger is still just outside the campfire’s light, and that neighboring tribe is eyeing all those berries that are starting to come in, in all of our inner psyches. And it’s been so long since we’ve had a genuine existential crisis – World War 2, the Depression – that all that evolutionary energy’s gotta go somewhere.

Combined with the other four things we’ve gotten wrong, it’s probably understandable that “Big Karen’s” energy is so misplaced.

I said “understandable”. Not OK.

Ignoring Collateral Harm – It’s been plain from the beginning – the people urging us to lock down hard and stay locked down to “eliminate the virus” are the ones with academic/public sector/large-corporate jobs that let ’em work from home indefinitely (well, so far).

We’ve been talking about many of the collateral harms – endemic depression, skyrocketing suicide, a generation of kids who are floundering emotionally and parents who are completely adrift trying to figure out what to do about it, suicide, stress and its many ailments, and skyrocketing crime, especially among bored and aimless youth on whom the suspension of most of regular life falls the hardest.

We’ve been talking about many of the collateral harms – endemic depression, skyrocketing suicide, a generation of kids who are floundering emotionally and parents who are completely adrift trying to figure out what to do about it, suicide, stress and its many ailments, and skyrocketing crime, especially among bored and aimless youth on whom the suspension of most of regular life falls the hardest.

But wait, we’re not done yet:

When we set perfection as the only option, it can cause people who fall short of that standard in one small, particular way to decide that they’ve already failed, and might as well give up entirely. Most people who have attempted a diet or a new exercise regimen are familiar with this psychological state. The better approach is encouraging risk reduction and layered mitigation—emphasizing that every little bit helps—while also recognizing that a risk-free life is neither possible nor desirable.

Socializing is not a luxury—kids need to play with one another, and adults need to interact. Your kids can play together outdoors, and outdoor time is the best chance to catch up with your neighbors is not just a sensible message; it’s a way to decrease transmission risks. 

You’d never know this listening to NPR, to say nothing of “Karen”.

Misplaced Balance Between Knowledge And Action – Or “perfect is the enemy of good enough”.

In this case, “perfection” – knowledge – was hampered not merely by the fact that we don’t know what we don’t know (and, last January, weren’t allowed to find out behind China’s bamboo curtain), but that the academic, journalistic, and real worlds have such very different, often mutuall unintelligible means of communicating:

…sometimes, the way that academics communicate clashed with how the public constructs knowledge. In academia, publishing is the coin of the realm, and it is often done through rejecting the null hypothesis—meaning that many papers do not seek to prove something conclusively, but instead, to reject the possibility that a variable has no relationship with the effect they are measuring (beyond chance). If that sounds convoluted, it is—there are historical reasons for this methodology and big arguments within academia about its merits, but for the moment, this remains standard practice.

At crucial points during the pandemic, though, this resulted in mistranslations and fueled misunderstandings, which were further muddled by differing stances toward prior scientific knowledge and theory. Yes, we faced a novel coronavirus, but we should have started by assuming that we could make some reasonable projections from prior knowledge, while looking out for anything that might prove different. That prior experience should have made us mindful of seasonality, the key role of overdispersion, and aerosol transmission. A keen eye for what was different from the past would have alerted us earlier to the importance of presymptomatic transmission.

The whole thing is worth a read.

For Me But Not For Ye Yadda Yadda Bla Bla

California teachers union official who’s spent months claiming that schools are unsafe…

…you already know where this is going, don’t you? Yet another Democrat official demanding compliance from the proles, while seizing special treatment for them and theirs. Right?

Right. And you know he’s a Democrat, because, well, he’s white, and elected, and in Berkeley, and I’ll just defer to the physical description:

“White man with dreads”. Only Urban Progressive Privilege conveys that level of immunity to charges of “cultural appropriation”.

Anyway – Meyer was caught on tape by “reopening” activists dropping his kids off at a private pre-school. I’ve added emphasis:

“Meet Matt Meyer. White man with dreads and president of the local teachers’ union,” the group wrote in a tweet on Saturday along with video footage of Meyer. “He’s been saying it is unsafe for *your kid* to be back at school, all the while dropping his kid off at private school.”

Meyer told Fox News in a statement that the video, which blurred out his child’s face, was “very inappropriate” and an intrusion of his child’s privacy. He added that there were “no public options for kids her age.”

Right – because of him, his union, and the state government over which both have inordinate control.

The Democrats are going to need another Republican to go to Cancun, and stat.

But Don’t You Dare Call Big Left Horrifyingly Reductionist

SCENE: Mitch BERG is at a local roastery, picking out some bourgeois coffee. Avery LIBRELLE walks in. BERG can’t quite react fast enough.

LIBRELLE: Merg!

BERG: Oh, f…for crying out loud, it’s been a long time, Avery. What’s…

LIBRELLE: (Interrupting) You say Democrats have trouble with critical thinking…

BERG: (picking a medium roast, ordering a half pound ground for french press) Yup.

LIBRELLE: …and that conservatism takes more mental energy…

BERG: …and it absolutely does, for people in modern society…

LIBRELLE: and that the modern left is hopelessly reductionistic.

BERG: You bet.

LIBRELLE: That is so wrong.

BERG: Nah. Here’s one of the modern left’s intellectual thought leaders at work:

BERG: Boiling a complex argument with lots of real world context down into an evil cover of a nursery rhyme is…

(BERG looks at LIBRELLE – who is happily clapping along and whispering the words)

(BERG silently pays for his order, leaves)

(And SCENE)

(

Mass Death Fails To Materialize: Big Karen Bereft, Distraught

Big Karen warned us – those Super Bowl tailgate parties in Tampa were going to lead to the extinction of Florida Man.

Those of us who paid attention in high school science noted that there’s incredibly low correlation between outdoor gatherings and Covid transmission.

“The science says ‘obey or die!'”, Big Karen responds.

Observation indicates – well…

You can almost feel the disappointment wafting out from Big Karen.

When they’re not busy deflecting away from the fact, that is.

Indoctrination

Whatever you do, don’t you dare suggest public schools have become leftist indoctrination factories:


According to whistleblower documents and a source within the school, a fifth-grade teacher at the inner-city William D. Kelley School designed a social studies curriculum to celebrate Davis, praising the “black communist” for her fight against “injustice and inequality.” As part of the lesson, the teacher asked students to “describe Davis’ early life,” reflect on her vision of social change, and “define communist”—presumably in favorable terms.

At the conclusion of the unit, the teacher led the ten- and eleven-year-old students into the school auditorium to “simulate” a Black Power rally to “free Angela Davis” from prison, where she had once been held while awaiting trial on charges of conspiracy, kidnapping, and murder. The students marched on the stage, holding signs that read “Black Power,” “Jail Trump,” “Free Angela,” and “Black Power Matters.” They chanted about Africa and ancestral power, then shouted “Free Angela! Free Angela!” as they stood at the front of the stage.

Apologists may respond “this is an anomaly! Not all public schools try to get away with this kind of thing!”

No. Just the ones in districts so blue that there will be no consequences – serving both to socialize (heh heh) the concept with other teachers, and to lower the bar of what’s “acceptable” elsewhere; “Oh, fer gosh sakes, Edina doesn’t have them chant “Free Angela” and talk about black “ancestral power”. No, perish the thought. We just study why Angela Davis is a hero (omitting all context about her crimes and communism itself, naturally), and why “whiteness” is a social cancer. Totally different things!”

Remember – Berg’s 21st Law is pretty clear on this: “When it comes to “progressive” policy, yesterday’s absurd joke is today’s serious proposal and tomorrow’s potential law”

Don’t be surprised.

Bad News / Good News

The bad news: As I observed with Ann Bauer while filling in for Brad Carlson last week, lockdowns are killing kids – especially kids who are, like so many these days, predisposed to mental illness:

Millions of American kids are struggling, and their chances for long-term improved mental health is predicated on the notion that we will now prioritize their emotional well-being, which our society has tragically shown it has no intention of doing.

Our hope for raising an emotionally healthy and mentally stable generation is dissipating with every day kids are kept locked in their bedrooms and out of schools. Skyrocketing rates of depression and anxiety are in no small part due to the fact that children feel neglected and forgotten, and they are not wrong to feel that way.

Our society has abandoned them and treated them as disposable. The damage caused by this abandonment is incalculable, and compounding every day we allow inertia, irrationality and the craven priorities of teachers unions to rule our decision-making.

The good news?

What, are you new around here? This is progressivism at work, operating through its wholly owned subsidiaries “Big Education” and “Big Karen”. Short of turning our culture around, there is none.

Government By Platitude

Governor Walz released…

…well, he called it his “education plan”, earlier this week.

Those of us who work in business – which significantly, has never included anyone in our executive branch – can identify what this…thing, is.

It’s a two page list of platitudes. One and a half when you leave out the header.

None of it has specifics. None of it is testable to see if it’s working or isn’t, in any way. And while we are assured that there’s more “plan” coming, mark my words – there’ll be no more substance in the thousands of pages of institutional gobbledigook that are surely to come.

But let’s translate the terms from their current Educational/Bureaucratic dialect – the form of English with the lowest signal to noise ratio of all our many argots – into actual English:

  • “‘Caring and Qualified’ Teachers” – Get ready to get logrolled with a few years of sob stories about how underpaid teachers, especially in the Metro, are.
  • “Expand opportunities and mental health staff” – Full employment for soft-science and non-profiteers in the school system.
  • “Statewide Mentor Program to help retain teachers” –
  • “Expand full service community school model statewide” – We need to expand the system’s efficiency at transferring taxpayer dollars, not just to Education Minnesota, but to the non-profit/industrial complex that’s attached to it like a remora fish – and all you schools in greater Minnesota need to step up and do your bit.
  • “Establish an Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Center” – Because why should we pay Pacific Consulting Group millions to screw up our schools when we’ve got PCG-trained career bureaucrats who can do it for us. Although we’ll still be transferring plenty of wealth to PCG.
  • “Expand rigorous coursework options” – You bought an education system! Now, for just a few billion more, you can have one that actually teaches stuff to kids! Maybe!
  • “Prioritize school funding to the students that need it most” and “Guarantee that compensatory aid funding supports students traditionally left behind” – jigger the various knobs and levers to move more money to the Metro.
  • “One time investment to ensure pandemic enrollment loss does not negatively affect students.” – parents and students are bailing on the public schools in record numbers. We need a bailout.
  • “Strengthen community and school partnerships” – No “community” non-profit left behind.

Hope that helps.

Bigotry Of Bizarre Expectations

Kind of a good news, bad news situation here. But maybe not in the way you think.

A teachers union president in Washington State refers to reopening schools as a “white supremacist” initiative.

The good – or “good” – news: this is an example of the type of rhetorical, social and policy overreach one can expect when “progressives” – in this case invariably white, middle-class, and visibly “progressive” – find themselves in power. This statement – literally, “wanting your kids back in schools, and wanting some sense of stability and normalcy for their mental health, at a time when teenage suicide is exploding all over the country, is racist” is the very definition of “2+2=5” – mental health is mental illness, concern for kids is a pathology, truth is lies. (And the ability to say it without having ones own peers pelt one with rocks and garbage is Urban Progressive Privilege).

ut another way, evil – no scare quotes. Inverting moral truth and moral falsehood is as textbook a definition of venial evil as exists.

That’s the “good” news.

The bad news? About half the country, as this is written, doesn’t know any better, or just doesn’t want to think about it that hard.

The Usual Suspects

Trump supporters on the Mall

“Trump Supporters” who stormed the Capitol.

We’ve seen the horned-hat guy before:

Wasn’t there a famous incident a centuray ago, a fire blamed on innocent people which gave a certain politician the excuse to seize power?
Are we absolutely certain the troublmakers were ordinary Trump supporters, same as the rest of the crowd outside, and not infiltrators hoping to cause a backlash against President Trump and his supporters protesting the stolen election

Joe Doakes

Whether the riot was launched by provocateurs or not, plenty of Trump supporters did participate with great glee. There’s a dilemma, of course – if there’s one thing we learned during the Tea Party, at gun rights and pro life and tax-protest rallies, it’s that conservatives need to behave impeccably, because the media and the Dems oppo research staff (pardon the redundancy) will pick over every utterance, visual and thought for wrongthink).

(If there’s another thing we learned it’s that the left’s slander machine and control of the administrative state makes perfect behavior irrelevant. Lefty social media today is awash in claims that the Tea Party was racist, violent, and a tool of the Koch Brothers, who (we’re told) bought all of American politics for a few years).

But whoever turned the demonstration into a riot, and whatever the reasons, the left is responding to last week’s events with a technique they’ve mastered; not wasting a crisis. Whoever did what, it will be spun relentlessly to their advantage.

Ricardo Lopez: Middle School Reporter

Ricardo Lopez writes for “MN Reformer”, which is a website in the tradition of the old “MN Monitor” – basically a propaganda site funded by progressive plutocrats with deep pockets,

Further proof that not only the Democratic party, but its pet media (and the Reformer is nothing but a paid PR lapdog for Ken Marti) can assume that their audience isn’t an especially critical bunch of thinkers.

Because, say what you will about Miller’s letter, logically or epidemiologically, but other than choosing the word “Exchange” over the more apposite “Exposure”, he got the mechanics of how we currently know Covid is spread pretty right.

It took Lopez’s apparently eighth-grade sense of discernment to read “sexual transmission” into a choice of words that, otherwise, got things basically correct.

But in a world where Samantha Bee is among the left’s top journalists, it doesn’t not make sense that someone like Lopez would do…well, this.

National Slander

I’m particularly proud of the interview I had last weekend with Peter Wood, author of 1620 – A Criticial Review of the 1629 Project. Wood and his book take a hammer to the historical fraud that the NYTimes sicced on the nation…

…and, worse, the miseducation of an entire generation about the history of our country.

It starts at 33 minutes into the hour:

Prager U has a similar message:

Cautionary Tale, 2020

Dennis Prager notes that everything The Left touches, it destroys.

If you’re a conservative, in a well-run conservative state like the Dakotas, Wyoming, Nebraska, South Carolina, Idaho, Utah or most of Montana, Texas, Oklahoma or Indiana, be careful.

All these people fleeing the mess their own politics have made do screw up your politics. You’ve seen it in rural New England, where Boston refugees pretty much zorched everything forty years ago.

Colorado? Virginia? Lost to refugees from California and DC over a decade ago.

Arizona?

It’s becoming mini-California.

The Seattle Times reports that the refugees from California, Washington, Texas, Colorado, Illinois, Oregon, Minnesota, Nevada, Florida, and Utah, in that order, fled to the state with Cactus League baseball, more conservative politics, the Grand Canyon, and the Red Rocks of Sedona. And then they approved legal pot, the state’s highest tax increase ever, and put Democrats in the highest offices – the Senate and White House – to ensure their new home will be every bit as expensive and over-regulated as the one from which they fled. Toke up, ‘Zonies!

You’re seeing this in Fargo and Grand Forks, as colonies of academics from all over the blue-o-sphere set up residence, and then start turning the area into everything they fled.

Watch out, Hudson.

My Checklist

My “Black Friday” checklist:Wednesday before Thanksgiving:

  1. Make sure I’ve got groceries and essentials sufficient to get through ’til Monday. Check.
  2. Anticipate the places I need to go for the next three days, and map out routes avoiding major malls, Targets, Walmarts and commercial districts. Check.
  3. Switch on NPR and start counting all the “celebrities” and “newscasters” referring to this next four weeks as the most miserable, dysfunctional time of the year, full of family one hates because of their politics and the onerous nature of having to engage in forced civility while celebrating gratitude and humility while apparently feeling neither. Make sure I have a fresh set of legal pads, since it gets worse every year. Check.
  4. Silently ponder, for yet another year, converting to Russian Orthodox Christianity, at least in part to put Christmas off til January 6 and get some awesome savings on presents in the week between Christmas and New Years. Check.

OK. I’m good to go.

Happy Day After Thanksgiving, everyone!

Memory

Memory is a survival trait.

Squirrels remember where they buried the nut, so they can eat it later
to survive the winter.  Those that don’t, die.

Children remember burning their finger, so they treat fire
respectfully.  Those who don’t, burn to death.

Conservatives remember past public policy disasters, so we can avoid
repeating them.  We use monuments and books to help us remember.

Liberals remember . . . nothing.  Nothing ever happened before they were
born, except slavery, which was bad and therefore everything that
happened before they were born, is bad.  So it must all be torn down and
thrown out and replaced with something that sounds better.  And it must
be done right now, because Liberals have no patience for history lessons
or experience or hard-gained wisdom.  Why would they need any?  What
could possibly go wrong?

Half the population believes President Trump bungled the Covid response
by failing to impose a travel ban and nation-wide lock-down in January,
when Covid hit the news.  They literally cannot remember that we spent
January dealing with impeachment, or the World Health Organization
telling us Covid was nothing to worry about, or hand washing and
elbow-bumps as sensible precautions, or all the Democrat protests over
banned flights from China.  They believe 200 million Americans died of
Covid because they don’t remember differently.

Loss of memory is an anti-survival trait and half our society is eagerly
embracing it.  This does not bode well for the continued existence of
the nation.

Joe Doakes

I’m not sure it’s entirely fair to say “Progressives” (I’m not gonna continue debasing the term “liberal” – the left did enough of that) have no memory.

Orwell showed us how important controlling history – our “collective” story about ourselves – was to a would-be tyrant. This has been borne out in countless socialist and totalitarian regimes – knowing the wrong history could be a lethal error.

Having the correct memory, the one one is told to have, correctly and punctually, is a survival trait, historically (ahem) on the left.

The Fix

Macalester students, forced to “study” remotely, get not a dime’s worth of break on their tuition.

Their institutions’ president has other priorities:

Now might be a fine time for conservative entrepreneurs to start getting into the higher ed business.

Male Like Me

President Trump is so strong, so virile, so . . . hyper-masculine, just like a Vladimir Putin or  some Confederate general. 

MPR really misses Pajama Boy.

Joe Doakes

I’ve got friends…well, semi-professional acquaintances that haven’t gone completely mad with partisan rage, anyway – at MPR, so I’ll not comment on the locals.

But it seems to have been decreed from on high that male voices that aren’t audibly African-American must sound like most of America thinks Pajama Boy sounded.

Where Have You Gone, Learned Foot…

…the nation turns its lonely, topical limerick and haiku writing eyes to you. And Ryan Rhodes.

But since Foot is retired and Ryan is MIA, we’ll have to fill in ourselves.


There once was a fellow named Toobin
(Don’t confuse him with Jennifer Rubin).
His career met its doom,
when he dropped trou on Zoom
Now there’s a different part getting the lube-in.


Toobin takes “lid” off,
Two weeks’ frenzy erupts, as
Biden’s lid stays on.


So Toobin had fun of the kind,
the nuns said would make you go blind.
But there’s no point in moping,
it’s just Jeff’s way of hoping
for less trouble than the conjugal kind.


Carry on.

Question

Record number of women and minorities seeking concealed carry permits.

When Harris gets elected and her first Executive Order bans all guns, will the New York Times headline read, “Women and Minorities Hardest Hit”?

Joe Doakes

Should Harris/Biden win, and the Senate flip, and given the left’s predilection to overreaching when they get power, I suspect the first mid-term is going to get pretty sporty for any Democrats outside major metro areas.

I suspect that’s why Big Left has been trying to beat down the NRA, frankly. Not that that’ll help ’em much.

He/She/Whatever Who Forgets History Is Susceptible To Democrat Drivel

It’s possible that the collapse of public education isn’t a plot to make society dumber and more susceptible to totalitarian meddling.

But it’s hard to figure how they’d do a better job of it if they were trying:

Nearly 20 percent of millennials and Gen Z in New York believe Jews caused the Holocaust, according to a new survey released Wednesday.

The findings come from the first-ever 50-state survey on the Holocaust knowledge of American millennials and Gen Z, which was commissioned by the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.

For instance, although there were more than 40,000 camps and ghettos during World War II, 58 percent of respondents in New York cannot name a single one.

Additionally, 60 percent of respondents in New York do not know that 6 million Jews were killed during the Holocaust.

It was my observation when my kids were in school – over a decade ago, in the Saint Paul Public Schools – that the only things they learned in their various social studies classes were slavery and civil rights.

No “Federalist Papers” or origins of the Constitution. Nothing about the Civil War but slavery.

Nothing about the rise of progressivism, the causes of the Depression, World War II. Nothing about the sixties but Civil Rights.

Again – that was anecdotal, and entirely possibly wrong. But I’ve found little reason to not assume I’m at least largely right on this.

And this article is certainly a plaintiff’s exhibit.

Cop Out

Hopkins School Board Vice-Chair Chris LaTondresse – did he tell you he’s an “Obama administration alum” yet?

The Defund the Police movement hitches it’s wagons into the western suburbs.

In the apparently halcyon days of April 2018, students and school officials of the Hopkins School District gathered together in what was called “National Walkout Day” in memory of the horrific tragedy of the Columbine school shootings 19 years earlier.  Students spoke of issues of gun control and school safety.  And while none of the student speakers were even alive when Columbine occurred, a common theme of seeking safety at school echoed in the various speeches.

A time-traveler from that April day in 2018 would have a hard time reconciling the Hopkins School District of just two and-a-half years later as the School Board voted to keep guns out of their schools – guns in the form of local police protection:

The Hopkins school board on Tuesday night embraced a student-led call to remove police from Hopkins High School — with the action to come at year’s end.

The 6-1 vote brings a suburban voice to a national movement that has sought to end the use of school resource officers, or SROs.

The move to defund Hopkins School Resource Officers comes after several months of intense online lobbying by a group calling themselves “CopsOutHHH” and a poll of Hopkins students in favor of the movement – a poll in which only 183 of the District’s 1,600 students voted.  By the end of the year, Hopkins will sever it’s relationship with the Minnetonka Police Department (the Hopkins School District includes parts of Edina and Minnetonka) in a move that supporter and Board Vice Chair Chris LaTondresse bizarrely described as not actually “defunding” the police since the contract was due to expire anyway.

LaTondresse, a DFL endorsed candidate for Hennepin County Commissioner who touts his consulting work for USAID as making him an “Obama administration alum” in the same way that I apparently was a member of Congress because I visited Washington D.C. once, claims the move will allows for more mental health funding.  Considering the SRO budget is $113,142 out of a budget of $91,502,418, the idea that shifting 0.01% of the School Board’s resources away from security and towards mental health will address either issue is laughable at best and incredibly dangerous at worse.

It’s also a conclusion that files in the face of peer-tested research.  Carleton University conducted a two-year study of SRO programs and in their report, published by Routledge in 2019, they concluded that for every dollar invested in the program, a minimum of $11.13 of social and economic value was created.  While attention would likely focus on the role the SRO could or did play in the estimated 525 school shootings over the past decade (a number in partial dispute as it groups any gun-related incidents on a school campus together), left unreported are the number of incidents prevented by early SRO intervention.  The group Averted School Violence has begun to attempt to collect and analyze such data, a task made somewhat difficult by the very nature of the endeavor – incidents that don’t escalate into violence rarely make the news.

LaTondresse and the Hopkins School Board also want to cite that SROs make students of color fundamentally uncomfortable.  While data can’t contend with feelings, even a Brookings Institute report from 2018 which was less than fully supportive of SROs as agents of school safety didn’t see any correlation between SROs and race.  Brookings believed context for arrest records and racial backgrounds were lacking and thus a poor metric to judge whether or not SROs were more likely to discriminate or otherwise negatively impact minority students.

But no amount of data – or even common sense – was present on Tuesday night as the Hopkins School Board voted to eliminate basic security without even so much as a concept of what would replace their School Resource Officers.  Instead, a small but vocal minority has continued to push a partisan agenda that endangers students for the goal of striking symbolic blow against the police.