Where The Buck Stops

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails re Kristi Noem’s much-attacked decision on trans athletes in SoDak high school sports:

Conservatives are throwing her under the bus for failing to sign virtue-signaling legislation that would have subjected her state to crippling litigation. The Keyboard Warriors excoriating her in the comments are not footing the bill, and none of their sons or daughters will lose the opportunity to play college sports if she stands up to NCAA.

Her decision is correct: do something smart, or don’t do it at all. If only we could get other governors to think that way.

Joe Doakes

If you’re a conservative, be careful over what you let wedge you. Or, us.

Pick your battles.

19 thoughts on “Where The Buck Stops

  1. I’m confused. Conservatives shouldn’t fight to conserve things. Because it might be hard. Oh, well, there’s 70 years of precedence. Why not?

    Or alternatively, as Mollie Hemingway wrote:

    The entire point of this bill is to help women have legal recourse against being forced to compete against men. Noem says she’s TERRIFIED to allow legal fights (?) much less spend time on them, and instead offers, and I’m not joking, a petition governors can sign. YIKES.

  2. Liberals are attacking Governor Cuomo of New York with the enthusiastic support of the media, might end his career. Why now?

    Establishment Conservatives/RINOs are attacking Governor Noem with the enthusiastic support of the media, might end her career. Why now?

    I suspect it’s battlespace preparation. The 2024 campaign for President has kicked off and both sides are trying to eliminate rivals to The Party’s preferred candidate. The merits of the complaints don’t matter – The Party doesn’t care about Coumo’s groping or South Dakota’s girls – that’s just an excuse to tarnish a popular outsider and potential competitor to The Party’s choice.

  3. If you’re smart, boy, you’ll bake the cake, embrace the female penis, put your kiddies on the demon trannies lap and whatever else might be required of you later.

    Otherwise, you might get sued…you don’t wanna get sued, do you?

  4. If you’re smart, boy, you’ll bake the cake, embrace the female benis, put your kiddies on the demon trannies lap and whatever else might be required of you later.

    Otherwise, you might get sued…you don’t wanna get sued, do you?

  5. “The 2024 campaign for President has kicked off..”

    And by God, we’re gonna vote hard this time…so hard…no one has ever seen such voting…the libs will be owned this time, for sure.


  6. JD’s 7:16 is also confusing. Those attacking Noem are liberals (aka c0mmunists) – of course – as well as “Establishment Conservatives/RINOs”? You mean, like the National Review, The Lincoln Project and that ilk, the Wall St Journal editorial page, and all those who attended John McCain’s funeral (to name but a few examples)?

    Was there some big turnabout in what constitutes “Establishment Conservatives/RINOs”? Something like when a lake turns in the spring or fall? And all of a sudden people like me are Establishment Conservatives/RINOs?

    Help me out here.

  7. jdm, I’m sorry, but there is no easy way to identify an Establishment Conservative aka RINO: no membership cards, no arm bands, no annual convention.

    The best I can do is suggest you compare what they say with what they do. Susan Collins, Senator from Maine, is a member of the Republican party but she frequently votes against Conservative principles. She’s a Republican in name only; in practice, she’s a Democrat.

    I suppose one could argue “Republican” is not equivalent to “Conservative,” that the Big Tent party is large enough to embrace Mitt Romney and Ronald Reagan, that voting your Liberal concience is fine as long as you caucus with the Republicans so we control the committee assignments. But if the tent gets too big then there is no guiding principle, no common ground, no party platform we all embrace and work to accomplish. Instead, there’s only a mish-mask of uncoordinated special interests working against each other.

    I began reading National Review in the 1970’s. The magazine purged its Conservative contributors. Sam Francis, John Derbyshire, James J. Kilpatrick, others. It’s filled with middle-of-the-roaders, Bush supporters, Never-Trumpers, and endorse candidates who can lose gracefully without upsetting people.

    I don’t know if you’re an Establishment Republican or a RINO, jdm, and I don’t care, that’s your personal decision. What I care about is protecting and advancing Conservative principles, which Kristi Noem has been doing throughout the Covid crisis and continues to do, by objecting to flawed virtue-signaling legislation that won’t accomplish its goal but will cause chaos and litigation. Hubert Humphrey famously declared that if the Civil Rights Act meant Affirmative Action, he’d eat his hat. Kristi’s smarter than Hubert.

    It’s not enough to want to do something; we need to do something smart or do nothing at all. Throwing her under the bus for failing to be ‘pure’ enough, for failing to ‘fight’ for us, for ‘caving’ to pressure, takes one of Conservatism’s strongest pieces off the board just as the next campaign is beginning.

    Now tell me, who benefits from that?

  8. JD, if you’re trying to purposely confuse the issue, you’ve done a great job. I am not conservative because they don’t conserve anything nor am I a republican because they don’t either. I like to think that I’m an anti-c0mmunist.

    The only people I know of who have complained about Noem’s actions in this regard were *not* as far as I know Establishment Conservatives/RINOs (I simply assume liberals/leftists/c0mmunists hate everything Noem does). Have Susan Collins, Romney, or Rubio criticized Noem’s actions? Has the National Review?

    Your original comment (the post) as well as your 7:16 comment – to me – reek of Establishment Conservatives/RINO. That’s why I asked for clarification. That was the reason for my 7:03 comment complaining that you seem to favor Noem’s actions that – at first glance – smell like the usual Establishment Conservatives/RINO backing down in the face of adversity. To be clear, I am saying that from my position you appear to be taking the Establishment Conservatives/RINO position in this regard.

    My concern and that of other anti-c0mmunists is that Noem is backing down to forces advocating for transgenderism. Perhaps there are other details of which I am not aware. Like say, that the bill “sent back” included SD colleges and universities and not just high schools. Perhaps Noem would be happier with a K-12 only bill? I don’t know; has this been discussed?

  9. jdm, sorry I’m confusing you. Some writers are better than I at expressing their views (Vox Day, for example, who shares your view of Conservatives and Republicans). Let me try again.

    I mean the phrase ‘Establishment Conservative’ as an insult. It indicates someone who talks the conservative game only as long as necessary to achieve some short-term goal, then loses gracefully to Liberals (Mitt Romney, Jeb Bush). I don’t consider myself an Establishment Conservative.

    I mean the phrase ‘RINO’ also as an insult, indicating a person who claims to be Republican but acts like a Democrat (Susan Collins). Some Establishment Republicans and RINOs also hated Donald Trump for personal reasons or for being a popular outsider and therefore vowed to never to support him in anything he did, simply from spite. I don’t considermy self a RINO.

    In my view, a Conservative should respect the time-tested methods of the past and be wary of abrupt change for its own sake, lest the change bring about unforseen consequences which weaken or damage society. I consider myself a Conservative.

    I’m glad Govenor Noem did “back down from the forces advocating for transgenderism.” It was the right thing to do, the Conservative thing to do. Starting a war with the NCAA is an unnecessary complication and a sure loser for a small state like South Dakota. Incrementalism is a perfectly acceptable strategy when attempting to effect social change.

    The main focus for a state governor should be girls in her own state, not college kids competing nationally. A K-12 bill would make sense if it could be carefully drafted so that the courts can’t twist and misconstrue it to mean the opposite of what was intended, the way “discrimination based on sex” has morphed into “discrimination based on gender preference.”

    As an example, Minnesota’s right-to-carry movement spent years working on legislation to get it right. It’s hard to believe the South Dakota legislation is as well-crafted. It’s easy to believe that hastily enacted virtue-signaling legislation could spectacularly backfire. A Conservative would be wary of that.

    And since you asked, yes, National Review criticized her veto in a column by Alexandra Desanctis, March 23.

  10. JD, There seems to be a lot confusion about this.

    I trust Emerald Robinson and her take on this (tweet ID: 1373964078029410309) is
    Why did Gov. Kristi Noem destroy her political career for the sake of the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce?

    Or Jesse Kelly (tweet ID: 1374337472394575873)
    REMINDER: We’re in an ideological war for the future of America. In any war, there are casualties. That’s part of it. The System is in such control now, they ARE gonna make you pay when you oppose them.

    Kristi Noem was threatened with economic casualties and chose to surrender.

    It would seem that Gov Noem has not communicated her position well.

  11. Let’s try something none of the pundits appear to have done. Let’s look at the actual text of the bill: https://legiscan.com/SD/text/HB1217/id/2326653

    High school athletes may only compete against the same sex as determined at birth according to the student’s genetics and reproductive biology. Look at Section 4 – private cause of action against everybody involved for a long list of damages including attorney’s fees. It’s like a mini-1983 action. Now, what possible litigation could arise from that legislation?

    “Genetics” means DNA. What about people who have a religious objection to sharing my DNA with the state? What do we do with those few people born with both sets of reproductive equipment (1 in a Billion but they’ll be the focus of the made-for-tv movie, depend on it)? HIPPA protects my right to keep medical records private but will the state be safe from hackers? Will the state share medical records/DNA with law enforcement to help prove my uncle committed a crime? If someone challenges my eligibility to compete, will the state reveal my medical records/DNA to the challenger in violation of my right to privacy? Is this law ‘discrimination based on sex’ under the holding in Bostock v. Clayton County (Supreme Court June 2020) and if so, can the local school board afford to pay the damages? Will the national Big Gay lobby subsidize test cases to terrorize school boards into refusing to comply with the law? Will school boards simply stop having “girls” sports and designate everything “coeducational” rather than face bankrupting lawsuits? The law as written covers college sports which will bring about an NCAA sanction or boycott – who needs that grief?

    Governor Noem didn’t fight the battle so you think she’s a coward. Ask yourself this: why did Chesty Puller lead his Marines in a retreat from the Chosin Reservoir? Why didn’t he order them to fight to the death of the last man? Why was he such a career-destroying chickenshit coward?

    Because it was the right thing to do. Because not every hill is worth dying on. Because not every battle is worth losing. Because a smart retreat is better than a stupid attack.

    The proposed law is stupid virtue-signaling. The veto was correct.

  12. Everything you say may well be true (I trust you too), but the impression given is that of the usual “Conservatives shouldn’t fight to conserve things. Because it might be hard”. As I said, it would seem that Gov Noem has not communicated her position well.

  13. I’m not in one camp or the other on this one, except to note that if a large number of “trans” people do indeed excel at women’s sports, women’s sports in the NCAA and at the elite level, e.g. Olympics, are pretty much finished.

    Spectators expect to see visibly female competitors, loved ones of athletes won’t take it well if female athletes are injured by “trans” athletes in sports like basketball and hockey, and the data I see (steroid era track & field vs. post 1990 when the IOC figured out how to test for steroids) suggest that testosterone is only a small part of the athletic difference between men and women.

    To be fair, elite sport has been on life support for the past half century because the IOC still isn’t doing that great of a job policing juicing, but if a large portion of finalists in elite events soon becomes “trans”, that could be the final nail in the coffin. And, presumably, an opening for new athletics organizations that take doping and biological sex seriously–well, at least if they can manage to rent facilities for events.

  14. jdm on March 24, 2021 at 9:35 am said:
    JD’s 7:16 is also confusing. Those attacking Noem are liberals (aka c0mmunists) – of course – as well as “Establishment Conservatives/RINOs”? You mean, like the National Review, The Lincoln Project and that ilk, the Wall St Journal editorial page, and all those who attended John McCain’s funeral (to name but a few examples)?

    Mark Steyn recently posted his deposition on the Mann case. NR editors are mentioned, beginning about half way through. It is clear that Steyn thinks the NR people — Rich Lowry, etc., are poseurs, living the high life in NY City by Kow-Towing to #nevertrumper contributors like the Koch’s.
    NR is a 501(c)3 these days, so it has to publish salaries. Rich Lowry is paid (according to Steyn) a bit less than half a million bucks/year to edit a magazine that grosses around seven million bucks a year.
    The entire deposition is interesting reading. Steyn is at his acerbic best, and he name drops like a champion.

  15. I know this post is now stale and uninteresting, but I’m just OCD enough to add this. As much as I respect JD and appreciate his sober analysis of the situation, I think he’s wrong. I have not read anything else that backs up his position and there are an awful lot of non-Establishment Conservatives/RINOs, respectable non-Establishment Conservatives/RINOs who disagree.

    Link 1) Kristi Noem Running The Mike Pence Play To Help Leftists Control The Culture.

  16. MO, that pdf you linked to is fascinating, however reading it in legal deposition format is painful.

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