Sunday, January 31, 2016

Treaties

Sooner or later, they shoot every arrow in their quiver.

If the constitution had clearly specified a power to abrogate treaties it would have been used many times by now.

Think how handy such a power would be and have been.

Abrogation.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Shakespeare

The idiocies people speak to themselves to prepare themselves for horrors.

Act V, Scene IV, Queen Margaret.

Why, courage, then! what cannot be avoided
‘Twere childish weakness to lament or fear.

3 Henry VI.

Remarkable lenity.

Prince Edward.

Methinks a woman of this valiant spirit
Should, if a coward heard her speak these words,
Infuse his breast with magnanimity,
And make him, naked, foil a man at arms.
I speak not this, as doubting any here;
For did I but suspect a fearful man,
He should have leave to go away betimes,
Lest in our need he might infect another,
And make him of like spirit to himself.
If any such be here, as God forbid!
Let him depart before we need his help.

What a wonderful soliloquy!

Richard III, Act I, Scene 1.

What an impossibility!

Scene 2, the turning of Lady Anne.

Queen Margaret's curses in Scene 3 are tremendous.

This play is one of my favorites.

All the same, at Act IV, Scene 4, Richard's success with Queen Elizabeth is equally incredible.

A metaphor

It seems you will live forever, it seems that nothing changes.

But you are like a frog immersed in a pot as the water heats.

Time passes, you do not notice as it happens, but you grow older, you rush toward disability and then your end.

Carpe diem.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Trump remains the only honest candidate on this one issue

Trump rallies after debate: 'Cruz is an anchor baby in Canada'

Also amusing.

That could've been an SNL line.

Maoist a cult leader, sex abuser, narcissistic psychopath

Maoist cult leader jailed for 23 years as 'slave' daughter goes public

A worthy follower of the Red Emperor who made Tiberius look tame.

How many years ago was the final solution?

What?

And we're still holding that against Hitler?

Clinton Campaign's Finney On Using Iraq War Vote Against Hillary: "How Many Years Ago Was That?"

And this could perfectly well be true.

FBI director would like to indict Clinton and Abedin

Getting her indicted seems to be a real toughie, but getting her convicted likely wouldn't be.

The demographics of Hill vs Bern

Centrist, moderate, and mildly progressive folks, girls, and blacks are mostly for Hill.

People further left and boys and whites are mostly for Bern.

Trump and Hill

Several of the candidates, but two especially, remind us this time that it's not just about the issues and it's not just about positions and policies and agendas, it's also about character.

Hillary is a liar, a snake, and an unlikable bitch who should be indicted and could be at any time.

The Donald is a liar, a blowhard, a demagogue, a faker, and a totally unprepared incompetent of immense ignorance and wholly unjustified vanity.

Cruz and Bernie both reputedly alienate potential friends and allies, but that is as nothing compared to the beams in the eyes of the two front runners.

Joan Walsh comes out swinging for Hillary and the Sisterhood.

Why I’m Supporting Hillary Clinton, With Joy and Without Apologies

Joy? Really?

I’ve come to feel passion for Clinton herself, and for the movement that supports her.

Uh huh.

Hillary is the passion candidate.

Well, for the girls' club, anyway.

“Do you think women—especially women—are ready to vote for a woman?” a young woman in Toulouse asked me nervously.

“Yes,” I told her. Then I added, reassuringly: “Yes, we are.” 

Faced with her anxiety—and I admit I could be projecting across cultures here—I did something in France I don’t often do at home: I came out of the closet as a full-fledged Hillary Clinton supporter. 

And this time, as opposed to 2008, I’m backing her without apology, as the right and even radical choice. 

More than without apology; after 40 years of voting for male presidents, I’m supporting Hillary with excitement, even joy.

It's all about the lady parts.

Consider this revealing stretch of prose.

Had I not declared myself last week, in a Toulouse university lecture hall, I’d have probably done it here anyway, after watching the CNN Democratic presidential town-hall meeting Monday night. 

. . . .

But one moment got me particularly excited, and not in a good way. 

It came when a young white man—entitled, pleased with himself, barely shaving yet—broke the news to Clinton that his generation is with Bernie Sanders. 

“I just don’t see the same enthusiasm from younger people for you. In fact, I’ve heard from quite a few people my age that they think you’re dishonest. But I’d like to hear from you on why you feel the enthusiasm isn’t there.”

“I’d like to hear from you on why you feel the enthusiasm isn’t there.” 

I’m not sure I can unpack all the condescension in that question. 

I heard a disturbing echo of the infamous 2008 New Hampshire debate moment when a moderator asked Clinton: “What can you say to the voters of New Hampshire on this stage tonight, who see a resume and like it, but are hesitating on the likability issue?” 

Yes, the “likability” issue. 

I found myself thinking: Not again. 

Why the hell does she have to put up with this again?

Of course, it's not about likability.

As far as that goes, if recent news is right, the Bern is personally unloved and unlovable even among his liberal peers.

So that one is probably a wash.

But the kid was talking about enthusiasm, and he was telling the truth.

And Hill's dodgy reputation even among Democrats for dishonesty, and that's also the truth.

Come to that, isn't the person being slammed hardest about likability in this primary season Ted Cruz?

And Kathleen Parker has a different take altogether on that kid and his question.

My problem wasn’t merely with the insulting personal tone of the question. 

It was also the way the young man anointed himself the voice of his generation, and declared it the Sanders generation. 

Now, I know Bernie is leading among millennials by a lot right now in the polls. 

Nonetheless, millions of millennials, including millions of young women, are supporting Hillary Clinton. 

And my daughter, as Nation readers know, is one of them. 

I find it increasingly galling to see her and her friends erased in this debate.

Hmm.

Imagine the dismay of the YAF kids when hippies, radicals, feminists, and sexual revolutionaries like Joan, back in the day, claimed to speak for the entire 60's generation.

And after that bit we get paragraph upon paragraph of the mom Joan waving her finger, almost in tears, angrily demanding "Don't you dare ignore my daughter, you, you beardless boy!"

Anyway, besides considering the above hysterical mom remarks, go back and look at Joan's uninhibited enthusiasm for Nelson Mandela when he was using race to sell communism, or maybe it was communism to sell race.

She barely noticed the communism part, and for her while the Cold War was nearly imaginary the global struggle of non white peoples to free themselves from the terrible yoke of white racist men, mostly so that they could be immediately subjected to the much worse tyrannies of rule by locals who (Oh Joy!) were not white even if they were men, was the cause of the century, the arc of history bending toward justice.

Really? The Boxer Rebellion? Apartheid and the Belgian Congo? You want to go there?

Then think Khmer Rouge, the Shining Path, Rwandan genocide, or even Robert Mugabe.

For that matter, think Mao and the red emperors or Uncle Ho and the reds of Vietnam.

Phooey.

Joan is and always has been all about the tribe, all about having the right identity.

For her, the choice between Hillary and Barack was a terrible, wrenching choice between a woman and a black man.

Lucky for her, the choice between Hillary and Bernie is an easy choice between a woman and a white man.

And old white man, at that.

Eight years ago . . . I was genuinely torn about not supporting the amazing African-American senator running in the primary against her. 

This time, I feel a slight twinge of regret that I’m not supporting the socialist [Jewish and from Brooklyn, she later explains] in the race . . . but it’s not at all the same. 

As for Bernie calling Planned Parenthood part of the establishment, she has this to say about the absolute centrality of a woman's right to kill her unborn children to her radicalism.

Which brings me to another reason I’ve felt compelled in the last week to come out publicly and forcefully for Clinton, which is Sanders’s dismissing Planned Parenthood’s endorsement (and that of NARAL Pro-Choice America) by labeling them part of the “establishment.” 

I appreciated Sanders supporter Kathy Geier’s acknowledgment here in The Nation that her candidate once again came off as tone-deaf on an issue of gender. 

Yet Geier seconded Sanders’s assertion that these two groups fighting for reproductive justice deserve to be termed “establishment”—and therefore unfavorably compared to the upstart, grassroots, and genuinely radical groups that back Sanders.

I just don’t see it that way. 

I think there are few issues as radical as advancing the reproductive autonomy of women. 

And I think it’s hard to be truly establishment when dangerous men are shooting up your clinics, and the Republican Congress is persistently voting to strip you of your funding. 

Months and months ago I said Joan and the sisterhood would not support Bernie, that old white guy.

And so it came to pass.

Read Joan's entire piece.

From here to the end it's nothing but girl identity stuff, triumphant at last.

And she finishes up a bitter virago.

I’m tired of seeing her confronted by entitled men weighing in on her personal honesty and likability, treating the most admired woman in the world like a woman who’s applying to be his secretary. 

I’m stunned anew by the misogyny behind the attacks on her, and her female supporters, including my daughter. 

I’m sick of the way so many Sanders supporters, most of them men, feel absolutely no compunction to see things through female Clinton supporters’ eyes, or to worry they might have to court us down the road, take special care not to alienate us lest we sit the race out in November, if our candidate loses.

Of course we won’t do that; we’re women! 

We’re trained to think about everybody else’s needs first. 

It’s not just that: women will be hurt the most by a GOP presidency. 

Naturally, I will back Sanders if he’s the nominee. I promise I’ll eventually feel joy about it—after grieving, if Clinton were to lose again. 

But if that were to happen, it wouldn’t be because I was too busy protecting my lefty bona fides to say I support her, enthusiastically, this time around. 

I stand with a lot of women who feel the same way, including my daughter, and we won’t be erased.

Oh, there's a new movie out about a very remarkable life involving achievements unmatched by anyone to this day, achievements of the Olympics of 1936 and the years around that.

Achievements and an exemplary life that were possible for a black man in America during the years of segregation, Jim Crow, and the triumphant racism of the South.

But given the recent bio of Martin Luther King, I won't  vouch for the film's veracity or even promise it isn't a lying, hate filled, racist diatribe against America and American whites.

About those nonviolent drug offenders

The president wants to cut loose many, many of them.

Does that include the guys who stand around schoolyards with their little bags of crack and heroin?

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Bernie, Barack, religion in America

The popularity of Bernie Sanders speaks volumes about Americans’ rejection of organized religion

Interesting piece in Salon by Amanda Marcotte.

I saw a Bernie bumper sticker today on a car parked outside the public tennis courts of Mount Lebanon, PA.

I didn't see any stickers for anyone else.

Interesting.

Is Bernie a red?

Democrats would be insane to nominate Bernie

. . . . if Democrats hope to hold the presidency in November, they’ll need to hold their noses and nominate Clinton.

Ultimately, I expect that’s what Democrats will do — because as much as they love Sanders, they loathe Donald Trump more. 

It seems more evident each day that Republicans have lost their collective reason and are beginning to accept the notion that Trump will be their nominee. 

And I doubt Democrats will make an anti-immigrant bigot the president by nominating a socialist to run against him.

That's his hot button, I guess.

But it's not mine and it's not even his own main point.

This is true, but less true every day as Hillary's supporters have begun going after him pretty hard.

Opponents have been attacking and defining Clinton for a quarter-century, but nobody has really gone to work yet on demonizing Sanders.

But this is silly, since those Americans aren't voting for any Democrat.

Sanders, explaining that much of what he proposes is happening in Scandinavia and Germany (a concept that itself alarms Americans who don’t want to be like socialized Europe), answered vaguely: “Creating a government that works for all of us, not just a handful of people on the top – that’s my definition of democratic socialism.”

This gets us there.

But that’s not how Republicans will define socialism – and they’ll have the dictionary on their side. 

They’ll portray Sanders as one who wants the government to own and control major industries and the means of production and distribution of goods. 

They’ll say he wants to take away private property. 

That wouldn’t be fair, but it would be easy. 

Based on his announced agenda and admitted commitments and views, so far, yes, such accusations would be unfair.

Unfortunately, we are in no position right now to say they would be untrue.

If Dana M sincerely fears such attacks shouldn't he and other like minded journos be asking Bernie right now for his views on socialism, the real thing rather than "socialism" as he defines it?

Why not ask him about nationalization of major industries, what old time American Socialists used to call "the commanding heights of capitalism"?

Nationalizations in the US, in Venezuela, in South Africa, or even a restoration of real socialism in China?

And why not ask him, while they are at it, about the claims of Americans and American companies against Cuba for uncompensated nationalizations there from the early days of Castro's rule?

How else can they, responsible journos and servants of the public's right to know and pillars of democracy as they are, insure that Democrats don't actually but unwittingly nominate a socialist?

Socialists don’t win national elections in the United States.

Absolutely right, but for all we know right now, even after reading every word that Dana M has to say, that point is irrelevant.

Bernie isn't running as Eugene Debs, though he admires the man, and his platform isn't Debs's.

So the socialism part of this is an unfounded bogey, but all the same Milbank's dire warning might be right.

Sanders accepts it, but are Democrats ready to accept ownership of socialism, massive tax increases and a dramatic expansion of government? 

If so, they will lose.

Ron Chusid sees things otherwise and argues Bernie's electability.

And he rightly warns that there is much risk in nominating a woman who might at any time be indicted.

But it is entirely possible that Bernie is in fact a more vivid red than any American politician outside of Cuba.

And there is much risk, too, in nominating a man who might at any time be outed as an admirer of Hugo, Fidel, and Che.

Who is Bernie Sanders, after all?

All his life, when people asked him that he could have said "I'm a social democrat," but he didn't.

He said "I'm a democratic socialist," and that's a species of socialist, though he would immediately launch into the vague feel-good stuff democratic socialists of the Michael Harrington/DSA era always said about socialism and about themselves.

His hero was and is Gene Debs, an actual socialist.

He has always been much admired by the DSA and the admirers of Michael Harrington.

And like many others on the left regarding clashes of the Cold War he often supported an anti-American, pro-communist position.

By the way, in the Fall of 1967 Harrington's The Other America was required reading for entering freshmen at Holy Cross College, along with Camus' The Plague and Fanon's The Wretched of the Earth.

I can't even imagine what their freshman will have to read this year.

Scandinavian Social Democrats, all

Sweden and Finland plan to expel up to 100,000 failed asylum seekers

Sweden, Denmark And Germany’s Nazi Problem: Policy For Refugees’ Valuables Compared To Hitler Era

Can't wait for the left's take on this racist moron

South Africa's Malema urges voters to fire warning shots at ruling party in local polls

Not literally, as this alarmist and deceitful headline alleges.

This guy actually is a socialist and aims at nationalization of South Africa's leading industries, playing on racism as other regimes play on anti-Americanism, xenophobia, anti-colonialism half a century after it disappeared from the global map, or jingoism as China, for example, continues to yell about the Boxer Rebellion and about The Opium War.

The Occidental allies of nations playing these cards echo their propaganda, for example they echo China whenever that country demands the West stop using fossil fuels, pay them for climate change damages, and allow them to continue to burn fossil fuels as wildly as they want.

It might be interesting and illuminating to ask Hillary and Bernie for comments about this guy and the policies he advocates.

About Hugo Chavez's Bolivarian Revolution.

Maybe even about the Sandinista's economic policies when they were in power.

Julius Malema, who seeks nationalization of mines and land and the curbing of white economic power, called on other opposition parties to unite with his Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) to break the grip of the ruling party [the ANC] at municipal polls this year.

. . . .

"South Africans must shoot warning shots now, through their votes," Malema told Reuters in an interview.

"It is an opportunity now for South Africans to show the ANC that they are tired ... that the ANC should begin to take them seriously, ahead of the national elections in 2019."

. . . .

Malema - who points to the Johannesburg Securities Exchange as a symbol of the capitalism and white power his party aims to dismantle - said the ANC was still relying on the memory of liberation hero and former president Nelson Mandela to woo votes.

The devils we have to deal with

Khamenei denies Holocaust

The only part of what he says that makes sense is his criticism of European PC speech codes that criminalize Holocaust denial.

The rest just radiates his white hot enmity toward Jews, Israel, the Occident, Obama, and The Great Satan.

This Rouhani is the "reformer," the "liberal"?

From the text, it's not clear whether the French would even meet him half way, serving a Halal meal for him (with, of course, no wine) and local fare for themselves.

She supported O against Hill in 2008, too

Susan Sarandon backs Bernie for president

Hill backs O for Supremes

South Carolina black Democrat leader switches from Clinton to Sanders

But vice versa is OK, right?

Joseph Fiennes as Michael Jackson shows race problems before Oscars row

Steven Thrasher, one of The Guardian's race cops all of whom are black, is not happy.

Think Idris Elba as James Bond.

He would be excellent in the role, if you ask me.

But if that's OK (and it's OK) then why not this?

Zika, the next big thing

Zika virus spreading explosively

The World Health Organisation has convened an emergency committee to discuss the “explosive” spread of the Zika virus, which has been linked to thousands of birth defects in Latin America.

“Last year the disease was detected in the Americas, where it is spreading explosively,” Margaret Chan, the WHO director general, said at a special briefing in Geneva. 

It was “deeply concerning” that the virus had now been detected in 23 countries in the Americas, she added.

Between 3m and 4m cases of Zika can be expected, said Marcos Espinal, an infectious disease expert at the WHO’s Americas regional office, though he gave no time frame for these figures.

The spread of the virus has prompted governments across the world to advise pregnant women against going to the areas where it has been detected. 

There is no vaccine or cure for Zika, which has been linked to microcephaly, a serious condition that can cause lifelong developmental problems.

Chan said: “The level of alarm is extremely high. Arrival of the virus in some cases has been associated with a steep increase in the birth of babies with abnormally small heads.”

. . . .

Since September, Brazil has registered nearly 4,000 cases of babies with microcephaly. 

The Brazilian president, Dilma Rousseff, has pledged to wage war against the Aedes aegypti mosquito that spreads the virus, focusing on getting rid of the insect’s breeding grounds.

This is not law enforcement

‘Nothing happens to the police’: forced confessions go unpunished in Chicago

All coercion is to be rejected as it allows the guilty impunity and often leads to punishment of the innocent.

But not only physical torture is coercion.

Intimidation is coercion.

And so are other things such as offers of special deals to whichever of a supposed criminal team confesses first, or relative leniency in sentencing to accused who plead guilty rather than forcing the state to the trouble, expense, and risk of a trial.

At best a coerced confession lets the police stop trying to solve the crime.

At worst it also gets an innocent person convicted and punished.

Coercion belongs with planted or faked evidence under the heading "frame-up."

American police are a disgrace, deservedly reputed mere thugs in uniforms.

And the prosecutorial staff are just thugs in suits.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Lying attack on a Democrat newsie

Chris Matthews Says 'Nobody Cares' About Watching a Debate Between 'The Two Cuban Guys'

For years MSNBC anchor Chris Matthews has accused conservatives and Republicans of opposing Barack Obama simply because he's the country's first black president and therefore, they're a bunch of racists.

Now that the Republican Party has two Cuban-Americans running for President, Matthews seems to have no problem openly spewing his own bigotry. 

"Who’s going to watch a debate between the two Cuban guys? Who’s gonna watch a debate between Rubio, Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz? Who cares!" Matthews said on his show Tuesday night. 

He was talking about Trump giving the debate a pass, and he was absolutely right.

Bigotry?

Yeah, sure.

Alien invaders

Not long ago, the smug learned denigrated the credulous for fearing aliens, UFOs, and the like might be real, arguing that planets that could support life were so rare Earth might actually be unique and, in any case, interstellar distances are so great that the absolute limit of light speed on the travel of anything at all makes space travel outside individual planetary systems wildly impracticable.

And then some of the planet's biggest brains began to warn SETI supporters should be more careful what they wished for, as anything out there that might actually come for a visit would more likely want to eat us than aid us.

October 1, 2015

War of the Worlds, Independence Day, Invaders from Mars… 

The idea of advanced alien creatures targeting our world for conquest has long been the stuff of science fiction. 

But this fantasy could become fact, warns famed physicist Stephen Hawking.

“If aliens visit us, the outcome could be much like when Columbus landed in America, which didn’t turn out well for the Native Americans,” Professor Hawking recently told El País. 

“Such advanced aliens would perhaps become nomads, looking to conquer and colonize whatever planets they can reach,” he continued.

The Avatar scenario.

Anyway, how do they get here?

Scientists in general still think interstellar distances are prohibitive.

And why the hell are we sending people to Mars?

There is nothing men can do in space that robots and computers can't do better and a lot more cheaply.

The patter changes

When the rage for bottled water first arose liberals droned on smugly about American public water supplies being the safest in the galaxy, the best in the world, blah, blah.

Every penny spent on bottled water was wasted and plastic is very annoying, environmentally.

But then it emerged that berating public water supplies could be turned into another way to berate white people for racism.

And the patter changed.

Ohio state EPA chief blasts 'woefully inadequate' toxic water regulations

Why so white?

Simon and Garfunkel's greatest hit with the over 70 generation is Bernie's theme song?

Wow, he's begging to be written off as a stodgy and out of touch old geezer with a shriveled brain, isn't he?

And an awful lot of white folks and farm country in this ad, but I suppose it's for Iowa.

The argument continues whether Bernie is electable and whether his agenda is, or is too much, pie in the sky.

Krugman thinks it's too much pie, and warns against it.

Reich sides with the Bern.

His characterizations of Trump as a bigot and would-be dictator (he actually calls him that) and Bern as a true-blue, incorruptible idealist (Robespierre, anyone?) are entirely typical of the season for Democrats.

The unknown Bernie

Bernie is a self-righteous dick and his followers are believers, says John Avignone at Salon.

Sound like some sort of political cult?

One of the consistent criticisms of Bernie Sanders throughout his career is that he’s self-righteous and unwilling to entertain any position or belief that doesn’t exactly match his. 

Back in 1991, when Bernie was still new to Congress, progressive icon Barney Frank said of him, “Bernie alienates his natural allies. His holier-than-thou attitude—saying in a very loud voice he is smarter than everyone else and purer than everyone else—really undercuts his effectiveness.”

. . . .

This Democratic primary contest isn’t a battle of good against evil. 

Hillary Clinton isn’t the evil agent of the powers of greed and darkness and Bernie Sanders isn’t an avenging angel or a pious saint. 

This is a political campaign and they are both professional politicians. 

While both candidates seek to highlight their differences, they have far more in common with each other than either of them does with the extremist and often dangerous positions of the Republican contenders. 

Politics is the art of the possible, not the perfect. 

One candidate embodies the possible. 

One insists on nothing less than the perfect. 

Paul Krugman is right. 

The achievable possible is always preferable to the unachievable perfect.

Well, now, the perfect?

No, I think that's a little too black and white.

Digby's take on Trump and his voters

It takes her a lot of words to get there, but here's the beef.

But the conservative movement is equally under pressure.  

They thought their years of carefully growing and indoctrinating the right wing of the Republican Party had resulted in a common belief in a certain conservative ideology, strategic vision and commitment to a specific agenda.  

It turns out that a good number of the people they thought had signed on to their program just wanted someone to stick it to ethnic and racial minorities and make sure America is the biggest bad ass on the planet — authoritarian, white nationalism. 

If you’ve got a man who will deliver that you don’t need ideology. 

And he doesn’t need democracy.

The mystery is why all these smart conservatives didn’t see this coming. 

They unleashed this beast a long time ago with the hate radio and the media propaganda and the ruthless politics. 

It was only a matter of time before it turned on them.

Leave it to Camille to notice

Hillary’s “blame-men-first” feminism may prove costly in 2016

So, is it that Hill is just really mad at Bill and her abusive father, and this is how she vents?

Says Camille, hers is the version of feminism that's at least ostensibly lesbian, if not quite literally that.

More sexless than lesbian, I suppose.

But after a series of ideological struggles, she [Betty Friedan] lost her leadership role and was eventually eclipsed in media attention by the more telegenic Gloria Steinem, who famously said, “A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle.”

Hillary has unfortunately adopted the Steinem brand of blame-men-first feminism, which defines women as perpetual victims requiring government protections. 

Hillary’s sometimes impatient or patronizing tone about men, which can perhaps be traced to key aspects of her personal history, may prove costly to her current campaign.

And did you know she failed the DC bar exams when she left law school?

And she's actually a brown-eyed brunette with died hair and blue contact lenses.

Perhaps it may be impossible for hard-driving career women, schooled in the curt, abrasive Northern style, to give an inch and show that they actually like men as they are. 

But a top-tier politician like Hillary Clinton is narrowing her presidential chances when she privileges elite professional women at men’s expense.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Bernie vs Hillary

Bernie Sanders and the Liberal Imagination

What is doable and what is morally correct are not always the same things, says Ta-Nehisi Coates, the new liberal Black Pope.

News reports say Hillary did better at last night's debate than Bernie.

And today Coates attacks Hillary.

As for the Dunning view of Reconstruction that he attributes to her and attacks, it is much like the theory that blames the rise of Hitler and WW2 on the Versailles Treaty.

Reconstruction was a failed effort to do the right thing, and the Versailles Treaty was a failed effort to prevent Germany going another round.

Much of the undone work of the Reconstruction was completed during the civil rights era in the middle and late 20th Century, and the undone work of Versailles was completed by Stalin at the end of WW2, who forced a forty year partition of Germany and more or less permanently occupied the eastern slice, right up to the fall of the Soviet Union in the late 20th Century.

Here's an interesting assessment of the attacks on Bern at Salon by Corey Robin, including the note that the original yes we can man, Barack Obama, has repeatedly expressed opposition to reparations.

Corey Robin is white and pro-Bernie, and Barack Obama repeatedly expressed opposition to gay marriage until he flipped.

Is Hillary subtly reminding people Bernie is Jewish?

Is she playing the Evangelical card early?

Clinton Explains How Christianity Has Guided Her Politics

They keep voting for him

Christie bigmouth

Monday, January 25, 2016

Trump, IKE, and The National Review

Scott McConnell has a good piece on this, related to a bit by Chris Matthews.

Chris Matthews rips National Review ‘war hawks’: You hate Trump because he was against that ‘stupid war’

Chris Matthews: What Unites The National Review "Posse" Against Trump? "All These Guys Are Hawks"

MATTHEWS: 

I have watched this petition organization stuff from Bill Kristol for twenty years. 

It's always a petition. 

It's always a group of people ganging up. 

A committee of this, he's always ont he list. 

So is Podhoretz. 

They're always on the list, they love lists, then they announce a list, and we're always supposed to go along with it. 

Sometimes it is a full page ad of lists, this whole method of politics, which is putting a list of people together and then saying we have to do this position. 

Sunday, January 24, 2016

2 Henry VI

In the last scene of Act II, Gloucester's wife warns him of his peril, but he believes his innocence protects him.

In the first scene of Act III, Gloucester is arrested by his enemies at a whim, who do no more than assert charges, citing nothing for proof and no one for witness.

The king stands by, sure of the duke's innocence but powerless to save him.

This play reads better than 1 Henry VI.

Jack Cade uses the expression "dead as a door nail" in Act IV.

Was it old in English even then?

A low turnout year?

For both parties, whoever is the nominee will be someone a whole lot of his party's voters don't want now and won't much want when the time comes to trek to the polls.

Neither Hillary nor Bernie can bring out the vote like Barack Obama because minorities and women won't show up so much for Bernie and the youthful and sincere change freaks, women apart, won't show up in such numbers for Hill.

Actual conservatives and the Christian right won't walk a mile to vote for The Donald and his particular enthusiasts won't give more than a yawn to anybody else.

Correction, 01262016.

News reports say Trump has a double digit lead among evangelicals as well as overall, and he is now getting endorsements from evangelical leaders.

Go figure.

A rebellion on the Christian Right against actual conservatism.

Record snows for the Big Apple

Snow day in New York

The 26.6 inches of snow that fell in Central Park on Saturday is a one-day record for New York City.

The National Weather Service says the overall accumulation — 26.8 inches — is the second-most for a single storm in city history.

Meteorologist Faye Barthold says all but two-tenths of an inch of the city's accumulation fell on Saturday, surpassing the previous one-day mark of 24.1 inches on Feb. 12, 2006.

Officials say the total of 26.8 inches that fell in Central Park during the storm is the second-most since officials began keeping snowfall records in 1869. That narrowly misses tying the previous record of 26.9 inches from February 2006.

More snow elsewhere.

20 tractor-trailers still mired in Pennsylvania

11:20 a.m.

A stretch of the Pennsylvania Turnpike where more than 500 vehicles were stranded at the height of the storm remains closed.

Gov. Tom Wolf says officials hope to have traffic moving again by mid-afternoon Sunday. 

He says only 20 tractor-trailers remained on the closed stretch of the roadway in the western part of the state.

Wolf says the rigs' drivers voluntarily stayed with their trucks and were "all safe and ready to get going."

On Saturday, pockets of stopped traffic stretched back miles. 

Among the stranded were the Duquesne (doo-KAYN') University men's basketball team, the Temple University gymnastics squad and a church group from Indiana.

US blizzard 2016

The storm . . . . has affected some 85 million people, cutting power to 200,000 people. 

The heaviest fall was recorded in Glengary, West Virginia, which had 42 inches.

Who is supposed to spend a billion dollars on this failed city?

The NYT editorial board is utterly loony.

Fix Flint’s Water System, Now

The challenge now is to replace the corroded pipes or perhaps the whole water system in this city of nearly 100,000 as quickly as it can be done. 

The cost may reach $1 billion or more, but that cannot stand in the way of moving forward to make the city fit for habitation. 

No Americans should have to live with poisoned water that is a direct result of the government’s decisions and neglect.

And it's downhill from there.

How far is this lead scare analogous to global warming?

Pretty much a phony panic trumped up by the political left to empower their agenda, I mean.

Or in this case just to validate their narrative.

"Environmental racism," you know.

Why is Maureen Dowd published in the Times?

Shouldn't she be writing for People, Star, In Touch, or something like that?

Sarah Palin Saves Feminism

Bernie brought this red-baiting nonsense on the Dems

The kind of trash they publish in Richard Mellon Scaife's home-made toilet paper.

The one he pissed his fortune away on to satisfy his annoyance with The Pittsburgh Post Gazette, the city's Democratic paper.

Hillary Getting a Pass on Dems' Turn Left to Socialism

This piece is false from first to last.

Sanders, Clinton (Hillary!), and even the Sanders voters are socialists like Trump and Cruz are fascists.

Consider this.

It is, quite frankly, astounding that in the other race that has become the Democrats' nomination battle between Vermont socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, no one has asked Clinton to explain how she differs from Sanders' socialist ideology. 

Not one question, even though Sanders shockingly is the frontrunner and Clinton shockingly isn't in the primary season's first two nominating contests.

So, Salena Zito missed that, did she?

She goes on with a ludicrous tacit comparison,

Is this the case because Trump is sucking all of the oxygen out of the other campaigns? 

Or is it because Democrats are treated differently by the national media?

All fair questions because, goodness knows, if someone was running as an anarchist in the Republican field, Sen. Marco Rubio or Gov. John Kasich certainly would be asked how their views contrast with anarchy.

Count the falsehoods in the rest of her article.

Every paragraph she writes, and almost every sentence, bears its lie.

Some of her sentences express multiple lies.

Here's an example.

Sanders views the world as a connected string of injustices; he believes the country would be better under a socialist government that provides everything for the masses for free and bills the middle class and the wealthy.

And she goes on, asking silly rhetorical questions to which the true and evident answer is always just "No."

Like this.

Which leads to an underlying question that is rarely discussed: Have Democrats gone so far left that socialism really is their prevailing view? 

Is that what is being hidden from the public, by not forcing Clinton to express her true worldview instead of the far-left pitch that Sanders embodies?

Friday, January 22, 2016

NCIS New Orleans

An ICE agent calls a boatload of illegals a boatload of immigrants and nearly cries at the thought they will mostly be sent back to Honduras, their country of origin.

In the next sentence he is damning some border patrolling militia guys.

They are the bad guys, got it?

Are Democrats the party of crime?

Help stations across the desert and asylum cities for illegal immigrants, votes for felons, total rejection of voter ID, rebellions against policing, rejection of tough sentencing and any incarceration at all for many drug crimes popular in "the community," and the riot ideology all say they are.

An urban culture that forgets where the meat comes from

That's who listens respectfully to these people.

That they are welcomed and treated with respect by the political left is one of the things wrong with the political left.

Weekend storm

Weatherbug says 2 to 4 inches in total, over tonight and tomorrow, in Mt. Lebanon, just south of Pittsburgh in Southwestern Pennsylvania.

Accuweather also says storm total 2 to 4 inches.

Annoying, but hardly the brutal assault expected elsewhere.

It looks like the whole of the Chesapeake Bay area will get the worst of it.

Weatherchannel.

Jonas had already dumped up to a foot of snow in western North Carolina as of late Friday morning. 

A half foot or more of snow has also been measured in parts of Kentucky, Tennessee, upstate South Carolina, western Virginia, West Virginia and Arkansas. 

Thundersnow was reported in the Nashville area Friday morning with snowfall rates of an inch per hour. 

Even heavier snowfall rates of 2 inches per hour have been observed in Jackson, Kentucky, and Roanoke, Virginia, Friday morning. 

Conditions will go downhill rapidly Friday afternoon and evening through Saturday in the Mid-Atlantic and portions of the Northeast where blizzard conditions, strong winds and coastal flooding will develop. 

The National Weather Service has now issued blizzard warnings from northern Virginia to Long Island, including Washington D.C., Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York. 

Heavy snow and strong winds will bring travel to a grinding halt, between late Friday and Sunday morning.

. . . . 



Snow and Ice Impacts

At least 1 foot of snow

Eastern Kentucky into a large part of of West Virginia, western North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, D.C., northern Delaware, far southern Pennsylvania, central New Jersey and the New York City area. 

Amounts exceeding 2 feet are possible in parts of western Virginia, eastern West Virginia, central Maryland and the District of Columbia. 

At least 6 inches of snow

Northern New Jersey, Lower Hudson Valley, southern Connecticut, southern Rhode Island, southeast Massachusetts; central Kentucky and parts of Middle Tennessee; otherwise, a narrow zone immediately surrounding the 1-foot zone.

Damaging ice

Damaging ice accumulations of 1/4 inch or more have already been reported from parts of Upstate South Carolina into the Piedmont and foothills of North Carolina. 

Damaging ice accumulations may affect the Charlotte and Greensboro/Winston-Salem metropolitan areas. 

The Raleigh-Durham area may also see enough ice to break tree limbs and down power lines. 

The threat of ice accumulation has ended in Kentucky, but some locations saw 1/4 to 3/10 inch of ice accumulation before changing over to snow.

NR against Trump

Their objections are not only that he is no conservative and would break the firm conservative hold on the Republican Party.

Against Trump

It is unpopular to say in the year of the “outsider,” but it is not a recommendation that Trump has never held public office. 

Since 1984, when Jesse Jackson ran for president with no credential other than a great flow of words, both parties have been infested by candidates who have treated the presidency as an entry-level position. 

They are the excrescences of instant-hit media culture. 

The burdens and intricacies of leadership are special; experience in other fields is not transferable. 

That is why all American presidents have been politicians, or generals. 

Any candidate can promise the moon. 

But politicians have records of success, failure, or plain backsliding by which their promises may be judged. 

Trump can try to make his blankness a virtue by calling it a kind of innocence. 

But he is like a man with no credit history applying for a mortgage — or, in this case, applying to manage a $3.8 trillion budget and the most fearsome military on earth.

One advantage of representative government over direct democracy is that it puts power in the hands of professionals who are smarter, better educated, and perforce much more politically savvy than the people as a whole.

Another is that it strengthens the hand of the "haves" as opposed to the "have nots," essential for orderly government of any society in which equality of income and public ownership of all means of production do not obtain.

Amateurs short out that circuit, even when it's not a case of democracy itself being threatened or even destroyed by demagogues enjoying the enthusiastic support of the masses.

Democrats and socialism

The Democrats Stumble Toward 50 Shades of Socialism

Joe Klein has been noted as a supporter of Bill Clinton and "radical centrism."

He was writing even then that both parties were drifting apart, each becoming more extreme.

Here, he exaggerates the difference between Bernie and Hill (Medicare for all is not socialized medicine but socialized health insurance; the Brit National Health Service is socialized medicine and no one in America is suggesting that), editorializing in her favor.

And this is casual to the point of vacuity, and misleading so far as it says anything at all.

Her campaign has charged that Sanders would raise taxes on the middle class to pay for it. 

(True, but he’d eliminate insurance premiums–a net gain.) 

But a net loss for most people actually affected, since the tax hike will be for income above $ 250 K and these folks don't come close to paying the whole premiums for their EGHPs, anyway.

In fact, the best argument against Sanders’ health plan is the essential case against socialism–which Clinton’s supporters raised after the debate–and its next of kin, redistributionism: it dampens incentives, which dampens creativity, which leads to poverty.

That is not an argument against socialism at all, but an argument against excessive flattening of unequal incomes that makes absolutely no sense at all in this context, trotted out as an argument against Medicare for all.

And not even a very good argument against income flattening, considering that the history of America since WW2 does not support the big burst in inequality over the last two or three decades.

As for socialism, it does not disincentivize creativity so much as allow it far too little room.

You don't get a thousand flowers to bloom on only one stem, and the PC revolution (for example) was born in a garage - the economic equivalent of a manger - and succeeded only because there was plenty of room in US capitalism outside the box.

Too, Klein is not the first to claim that inequality of personal income or wealth is necessary to provide a market for novel consumer goods that generally start out very expensive but get a lot cheaper as time goes on.

The history of PCs is an example.

But new products do not require inequality to find a market, but only enough people with enough money who actually want the new product when it is far from being the bell-ringer it will eventually become, even as it becomes cheaper - a phenomenon of which the market and development history of the PC is indeed a perfect example.

The following is right, but would be more right without the shudder-quotes in the last sentence.

Those on "moral hazard" are fine.

Why the parens?

Sanders is in favor of some very good things, like breaking up the big banks. 

(There are even fastidious conservatives who agree with him because of the “moral hazard” involved.) 

His notion of a tax on hyperspeculative Wall Street gaming would be a more effective reform than the bramble of incomprehensible regulations comprised in the Dodd-Frank bill. 

His support for huge infrastructure spending is good too; it would make our free market more efficient and provide some nice muscle work for less-educated laborers. 

But each of those ideas is more “progressive” than “socialist.”

But this is just stupid and a glaring right wing attack on the progressive project.

Was it Klein who convinced Bill Clinton to utter that astounding betrayal, "The era of Big Government is over"?

It is still far more likely that Clinton wins the Democratic nomination than Sanders–but even Bernie should worry about his party strolling into the general election unwilling to distinguish itself from socialism. 

Indeed, the Democrats should worry about their attachment to big government, which, in America, has come to mean more unaccountable bureaucracy, like the Department of Veterans Affairs; more inefficiency, like the weird tangle of federal job-training programs, each more irrelevant than the last; and more perverse incentives, like welfare programs that ask for nothing–no personal responsibility–in return from their recipients. 

As to that, politically anyway, idle hands are indeed the devil's workshop.

People who have jobs are not available for rioting.

On the other hand, in contrast to the lumpenproles, people who usually have jobs but are stuck on unemployment are not so much inclined.

Big government is the way I was treated at the post office this afternoon.

So we have this strange election: Republicans race toward know-nothing nativism, and Democrats stumble toward socialism. 

Both are reactionary, discredited ideas. 

I want my country back!

If Clintonians like Klein are already doing this you can be sure the red-baiting and attacks from "the center" on Big Government will only get worse.

Sanders smeared as communist sympathiser as Clinton allies sling mud

Not sure it's quite "slinging mud" if it's true.

And it's true.

Who didn't see this coming?

Transparently false denials won't help.

So what's Bernie's plan to deal with this?

Flint on CNN

Half an hour ago the CNN news interviewer, a young black woman, interviewed  the city's recently elected mayor, a somewhat older black woman.

The newsie very nearly badgered the mayor, repeatedly demanding whether she would call this an incident of "environmental racism," and also harping on the poverty of the town.

Flint is in no worse shape than many of the towns up and down the Ohio and Monongahela valleys that used to thrive on booming steel.

But those towns are and were mostly white, so nobody whined about racism and nobody much cared what was to happen to all those people whose good jobs were lost to foreign and non-union competition, just like the jobs in Flint.

O, apparently, has called the mayor to the White House to commiserate, and promised some form of federal assistance specifically relating to the water issue, I think.

It is believed there is no safe level of exposure to lead, but the harm done by small amounts is less than that done by large amounts.

The change of water supply in Flint increased the amount in tap water.

Significantly?

Unreasonably?

Maybe, but it's hard to be confident, given this has become part of the constant stream of racial complaint and blame that has characterized our politics for decades and only worsened under Obama, who has actually personally made it worse.

Faces in the crowd

Witnesses is a beautifully shot and well done cop story made in Normandy, France, near Le Trepot.

(The heroine plays the sexism card twice, and that's once too often. But only once.)

Comparing whites to whites, the crowds are more consistently brunette and brown-eyed than Americans or Brits.

One of the characters looks more Flemish and the name of the actor who plays him is in fact something Teutonic looking, Jan Hammenecker.

Turns out he is indeed Flemish.

Lilyhammer and Occupied were made in Norway.

The crowds are blonder and more blue-eyed.

How's that?

How is the Lindbergh law constitutional?

The Mann Act?

The Coast Guard?

Anything resembling a secret budget, however disguised?

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Reform? Nah.

Whatever they want to reform, the Ayatollahs aren't having it.

Rouhani queries poll ban on reformists

You don't say

Markets overreacting, says Nasdaq boss

Putting it mildly.

They are behaving with shocking irrationality.

Sheer stupidity.

Lower the legal limit?

No.

Enough is enough.

It will save lives?

Sure.

But no thanks.

It is not true that just any increment in safety is rightly bought at any sacrifice, even if only of convenience.

Else who would drive in the fast lane?

Or drink at all?

Crime stories

The best thing about cops in foreign stories is their professionalism.

They don't coerce confessions, extort cooperation, or assault anyone.

They don't suborn perjury or commit it.

They don't fake or suppress or tamper with evidence.

They don't think they have a personal mission to punish wrongdoing or prevent crime by any means necessary.

Totally unlike American cops on TV, in movies, or in literature.

And they never ask their peers, "What do we got?"

Get ready

Weather Channel predicts a weekend storm total of 2 feet or more for DC, 12 to 18 inches for Baltimore, with commensurate mess in between.

Around Pittsburgh still saying maybe three or four inches on top of the two or so that fell on cold but bare ground Wednesday.

Update, Thursday night, 2330 hrs EST.

Crap.

The South Hills are in the 4 to 6 inch band in the local TV forecast.

Pussyfooting

Why Bernie Sanders Still Doesn’t Pose a Critical Threat to Hillary Clinton

When Democrats try to explain why white working people, contrary to their own interests in light of their respective agendas, prefer Republicans to Democrats they use words like "racist" and "stupid."

Ignoring reality

The Trump phenomenon across the aisle has led some Democrats to reflect on the large part of the white working class that does not support them.

Who Lost the White Working Class?

Robert Reich blames first of all the racism of white workers, of course, but also Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, and their Democratic allies for trade too free, going soft on Wall Street, and lack of support for unions.

Not a word about decades of Democratic, liberal, feminist, queer, anti-Christian, gun-grabber, racist, anti-capitalist, and other left venom spewed out onto the white working class and all it lives by and reveres, all from people who control and speak for the party that claims to be theirs.

People who constantly bellow their scorn for white people in general and white working people especially.

Of course not.

This is a move in the Bernie vs. Hillary game.

Speaking of ignoring reality, many Hillary supporters have already pointed out that efforts by Bernie as president to actually impose Medicare for All will surely fail and might well imperil Obamacare and, worse yet for me and mine, both Social Security and Medicare.

Right now, and though the Republicans are much worse, neither party can be trusted to prioritize the interests of the elderly - unless they are female or non-white - over competing attractions for government solicitude, just as although the Republicans are worse neither party can be trusted to look out for the working class.

In that regard, as an agent of destabilization, Bernie is perhaps worse than Hillary, though she trumpets rather than downplays her annoying bias for the interests of women over men.

And she is so much worse in so many other ways.

GOP office holders and money men prefer Trump to Cruz

Steve M. asks, Why does the GOP establishment prefer Trump to Cruz?, and brushes past the answer.

Others just take the opportunity to hit the race button, again, but all refer to this story in the NYT to show the GOP establishment does, indeed, prefer Trump.

Get this straight.

Cruz is a solid conservative and so are the GOP office holders and the money men who love them.

But Cruz, besides not actually being eligible for the office, is the Senator No beloved of the conservative punditry that wants to beat the country into compliance with conservative demands that we dismantle a century of progressive achievement with repeated shutdowns, honestly convinced that the voters will always blame the Democrats.

Cruz has been and remains all in for shutdowns, and he was even for defaulting when the government came close to being unable to meet its obligations, convinced the country would blame the chaos on the intransigence of the Democrats, unwilling to give the conservatives what they want even at gunpoint.

But the bulk of the conservative office holding class and their leadership, judging by experience, believe otherwise.

And the money men don't want the economy trashed by fanatics, in any case.

Enter Trump, author of The Art of the Deal, and far from a true-blue conservative, anyway.

Clear enough?

PS.

One might ask why no one seems to be making anything of Cruz's constitutional ineligibility but Trump and Ann Coulter.

Good question.

Are Republicans shutting up about it out of tribal loyalty and fear of voter backlash?

Are Democrats sandbagging?

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Another crash beginning now?

DOW falls 500

Oil futures are down to $ 27 a barrel and everyone is freaking out.

The markets are stupid and dominated by lemmings.

The more people on the markets the worse the lemming effect.

This absurd roller-coaster is definitely part of the down side of capitalism.

Update, 01212016.

An explanation, of sorts.

Cheap oil, good for consumers, is slamming stocks. Why?

Think of the market as a not very bright trained rat.

Cheap oil is a sell signal because generally oil is cheap because of contraction.

But there is no contraction, just a bit of slowed growth in China.

Oil companies apart, the US economy is doing fine with almost 6 % profits.

Oil is cheap right now owing to decisions of various producers to continue production despite low prices.

All the same, oil is cheap.

Ooooooo. Scary.

Occupied on Netflix

This tale of a Russian (pop 143 million) occupation of Norway (pop 5 million) on behalf of the EU is fascinating and very well done, but politically bizarre.

The Russians at first seem right to protest the fundamental premise makes no sense and panders to lingering fears and ongoing demonization associated with Russia's status as an ex-enemy and the greatest power outside and at least potentially opposed to NATO, the EU, and the Occident altogether.

Par Buchanan, Donald Trump, the allied American paleocon and anti-NATO Russophiles, and European rightists of similar ilk, all of whom complain that Russia is not today the menacing bear it is painted to be by neocons and others who cannot get used to the idea that the Cold War is over, seem vindicated.

But then come the second thoughts.

The velvet glove is phony from the first episode, and the situation just goes from bad to worse for the whole length of the series, which has no happy ending.

The lies, hard choices, and grim surrenders forced upon free peoples by tyrannical occupiers, as well as the ambiguities of both resistance and resistance to resistance, are brought to the fore.

In the end, by means comparatively subtle and not at all ham-fisted, the show forces viewers to consider as like cases Russia in Norway, Russia in Chechnya, Russia in Ukraine, and to think again about Poland, the very nervous Baltics, and other states that became independent when the Soviet empire collapsed.

It's all set going by the Norwegian PM's vision of himself, his party, and his country acting out a mission to save the world from itself by making Europe "go cold turkey," immediately ending all use of fossil fuels for any purpose - a move that precipitates the crisis.

The series was Jo Nesbø's idea, and you have to wonder about his politics.

Fascinating and well done.

Okkupert on Wikipedia.

Oh, and it is amusing that Free Norway sees the PM's crime as his acceptance of occupation without lifting a finger to oppose it while his own party is angry at him, not for that, but for betraying the eco-cause and allowing the Russians, acting for Europe, to restart oil and gas production.

Decades ago, way before they invented the global warming scare, the eco-left was already demanding we immediately abandon fossil fuels and just "leave it in the ground."

Portraying desperate people who conceive themselves as planet-saviors as willing to adopt the measures of this PM does not seem too much of a stretch.

ISIS's war on Christianity continues

Or anyone and anything that doesn't accord with its own Islamic notion of what is religiously correct.

Oldest Christian monastery in Iraq razed

Sarah's revenge. They skewered her, now she skewers them.

Sarah Palin endorses Trump, sticks it to GOP establishment that dissed and dropped her

McCain's personal selection for nomination for VP, she was immediately celebrated by the neocon punditry  . . .  as a babe.

By the end of the campaign of 2008 the alienation was complete between the Republican establishment - indeed, pretty much the entire American classe politique and our media elites - and the quondam governor of Alaska, reduced to the role of celebrity trash like Lindsey Lohan or the Kardashians.

Well, she always was kind of maverick-y.

Ta-Nehisi Coates rips Bernie, but not Hillary.

As for me, I think the black demand for reparations is a racist hate crime on a par with demands of Klansmen that blacks pay reparations to whites for all the expense and damage blacks have caused here over the centuries that has utterly overwhelmed any profit whites have ever got out of them.

And yet I don't doubt that Coates really believes his own hate speech.

He sincerely believes that if the arc of history bends toward justice it is toward justice exactly as he and his fellow black radicals, in their relentless fury against whites, define it, and regardless of how anyone else defines it.

He is as much a true believer as any ISIS murderer or Nazi Jew killer.

In any case, this will drive a heck of a wedge between Hillary's supporters and Bernie's, and perhaps more enduringly between Bernie's white supporters and the perennial black grievance movement.

Why Precisely Is Bernie Sanders Against Reparations?

Bear in mind that for Coates, a deeply committed exponent of the riot ideology, "white supremacy" refers to the cultural, social, and political dominance by whites generally characteristic of societies with large white majorities - a supremacy that would persist in case all sorts of positions throughout the society were held by all races or ethnicities proportionately to their numbers in the general population.

He will stop whining about it when the power and wealth in the US are in the hands of non-whites - preferably blacks - , whether or not, but most likely because, non-whites have become the demographic majority in this country, an eventuality for which he also fervently longs.

"White skin privilege" is to be understood in an analogous manner.

It is open to question whether this attack will actually hurt Bernie in the primaries or would in the generals.

It might actually work for him with white voters in lieu of a Sister Souljah moment, assuming he doesn't lose his mind and publicly embrace the cause of reparations.

I am not aware that Hillary supports reparations.

Oh.

Overton window.

Down to roaring stupidity

The Democratic response to Trump this morning is absolute, vulgar filth, bellowed.

Heather at John Amato's C&L has this.

GOP Strategist Calls Trump Supporters 'Childless, Single Men Who Masturbate To Anime'

Karoli Kuns has this on Sarah Palin's endorsement.

Once Again, The NY Daily News Nails It!


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Non-standard Shakespeare

Kenneth Branagh's is the best and most nearly uncut Hamlet available on video, though anachronistic - the lavish sets and costumes are late 19th or early 20th Century and look positively Czarist - and explicit about Ophelia and the prince where Shakespeare is not.

Ian McKellen's heavily cut Richard III is much more obtrusively and amusingly anachronistic, though almost equally lavish and certainly fun.

And a lot more sexually explicit than Shakespeare.

Robert Downey, Jr.?

Really?

His tiniest flaws are magnified

Donald Trump Mistakes Biblical Citation at Liberty University Event

He referred to Second Corinthians as "Two Corinthians," which is how citations are commonly written, though not commonly said, in the US.

Oh, heavens!

Of course, only his enemies thought this an actual flub.

Or said they did.

Blather from a revered moron

Donald Trump Evokes George Wallace for Civil Rights Icon John Lewis

Civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis sees parallels between the presidential campaigns of Republican Donald Trump and George Wallace, the late segregationist governor of Alabama.

Like Wallace, Trump is taking advantage of divisions in the political climate for his own benefit, the Georgia Democrat argued in an interview Monday with The New York Times and CNBC’s John Harwood.

Like Wallace and like every other politician who ever ran for office.

Talk about a smear.

Big snowstorm for the Northeast this weekend

Major winter storm forecast for Northeast

This forecast won't foster warm memories for folks in the Boston area.

Like this time last year, Beantown had received little snow, but over the course of the next few weeks was buried under a record-setting 110 inches of it.

Forecasters will have a better idea how predictions are lining up by midweek.

Between one and four inches for Pittsburgh Friday night through Saturday morning, say forecasts now.

But from the looks of the maps and the weaseling of forecasters it could be less, but it could be significantly more.

One to two feet expected in areas west of DC.

East Coast Bracing for Biggest Snowfall of the Season

The annoying Michael Moore

Another fellow who gives Democrats and liberalism a bad name, he was shouting only the other day that the water crisis in Flint is not a water crisis but a race crisis.

Michael Moore ‘Happy to Join’ Oscars Boycott

Gene Robinson on Hill vs Bernie

Why is nobody pointing out that Bernie's plan aims to kill private insurance, achieve absolutely universal coverage, and lower health care costs by cash-starving the American health industry?

That he proposes to make health care universal only by making it absolutely and unavoidably second rate?

Is Bernie going to have to abolish private insurance altogether?

Will he have to compel providers to participate?

The choice for Democrats

Yet another piece about those "Reagan Democrats"

Nation First, Conservatism Second

Actually, conservatism not at all, to be blunt.

Sam Francis in 1996 thought the Wall Streeters and libertarians who dominate the conservative movement have ruined the word since they actually don't want to conserve anything but only serve the interests of the rootless American plutocracy.

Per Michael Brendan Dougherty at The Week,

[S]ooner or later, as the globalist elites seek to drag the country into conflicts and global commitments, preside over the economic pastoralization of the United States, manage the delegitimization of our own culture, and the dispossession of our people, and disregard or diminish our national interests and national sovereignty, a nationalist reaction is almost inevitable and will probably assume populist form when it arrives. 

The sooner it comes, the better… [Samuel Francis in Chronicles]

And that's the Trump rebellion.

This is a brilliant article about Trump's supporters.

The only thing wrong with it is that it finds not just Trump but the anti-globalist ideology of his supporters frightening.

And is Dougherty really willing to concede that free trade all by itself, even apart from the impact of a flood of low-wage immigration, is good for the rich who profit big time and good for the poor for whom goods are cheaper but bad for the American working class in net and as a whole?

All the same, these renegade Democrats who have allowed themselves to be freaked out of the Democratic Party and into the anti-union, free-trade, open borders, party devoted to its last breath to abolishing Social Security, Medicare, and every jot and tittle of Big Government are idiots.

Even with Trump as their nominee, a Republican win would not be a win for white working class Americans but for their enemies.