Brady v NFL

John Dowd asks: Was Tom Brady ambushed? The issue is about clarity in rules and procedure that are especially important in sports.

Football, baseball, soccer and virtually every sport on the planet have one thing in common: They all have rules that are supposed to protect the integrity of the game. When rules get broken, everyone loses.

But when sports authorities don’t enforce their own rules with transparency and fairness, the integrity of the game is equally compromised. What’s happening today with the NFL undermines the concepts of integrity and fairness in the application of the rules and threatens to damage football’s credibility for years to come.

The NFL’s fundamental failure to conduct an expeditious, fair, honest and consistent approach to rules enforcement undermines the entire game. The league needs to reconsider its suspension of Tom Brady, and use this unfortunate episode as an opportunity to correct a terrible injustice to one the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history.

This is particularly interesting in that the NFL is trying to maintain that its actions were all about the integrity of the game. They seem oblivious to the idea that the concept of integrity also applies to them.

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Treason of the Professors

John Hinderaker describes an article by William Bradford who says:

The following are seven tactics, in order of increasing departure from traditional conceptions of the scholarly enterprise, whereby CLOACA conducts PSYOP attacks to support Islamist military operations. The first is promotion of more rigorous rules and compliance standards for Western militaries. The second is distortion of LOAC principles to immunize Islamist combatants and render counterforce more operationally complex and legally risky. Third, CLOACA misrepresents aspirations for what LOAC should be as statements of fact as to what LOAC already is. Fourth, CLOACA degrades U.S. intelligence collection and exploitation. Fifth, it advocates restoration of Islamist detainees to the battle, and sixth, it calls for prosecution of U.S. troops for alleged LOAC violations to cause hesitancy, indecision, and reduction in military vigor. Finally, it encourages execution of direct action missions, including material support of Islamists and treasonous conduct.

The issue is 4th generation warfare and the battlefield is political. The mainstream propaganda machine, including the The Critical Law of Armed Conflict Academy, is a fifth column working for the defeat of Western Cultures and societies. As Hinderaker notes, the defense is out in force to rebut the article and demean its author. He concludes “We are long overdue for a serious discussion of the role that elites in the legal profession have played in our now 14-year-old (at least) war with Islamic extremists. Unfortunately, because of flaws in both the messenger and the message, Bradford’s essay will not prompt such a debate.” which only illustrates just how careful one needs to be when attempting to hold the machine to account.

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Critical Race Theory

A comment on Dennis Prager, “The Left Only Sees White Evil.”

The devil works in obvious ways sometimes. Hating other individuals simply because of the color of their skin–even if you think that brings them “power” or “privilege”–is racism. But at least two generations of Americans have been taught the opposite, thanks to the far left dominance of the academy. Prager is sadly correct when he ascribes growing black-on-white racial hate crimes to the far left’s “victimhood” narrative, as well as his conclusion that more bloodshed is likely to come. — Instapundit

Only whites can be racist is a self contradictory concept upon which to base a rationalization for an ideology.

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Mass incarceration myths

Another book, another effort at deceitful propaganda. Powerline takes a look at Walters & Murray: The new Jim Crow revisited.

This book (hereafter, TNJC) is careless. The carelessness produces misdirection and it undermines the argument. Facts are stretched, the scholarly apparatus is weak, and the core argument is often contradicted by its own evidence.

Nonetheless, TNJC is a very popular book—rising to The New York Times best seller list, required reading for incoming students at Brown University

In a nutshell, TNJC argues that “[w]e have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it.” From the book jacket: “By targeting black men through the War on Drugs, and decimating communities of color, the U.S. criminal justice system functions as a contemporary system of racial control—relegating millions to permanent second-class status.” A primary concern is the loss of the right to vote.

The specific list of factual misstatements is long. For a book with scholarly pretentions, it is noteworthy that the book lacks a bibliography, and that its endnote citations are woeful.

Conduct either matters or it doesn’t. New York City Police Commissioner William Bratton asserts that it does. Bratton argues that blacks and Hispanics “represent half of our city’s population, but 96.9 percent of those who are shot, and 97.6 percent of those who commit the shootings.” These are terrible, troubling numbers. Dismissing the underlying phenomenon as a matter of mere “labels” is an irresponsible evasion.

We are expected to ignore the fact that black and white middleclass suburbs are not, by any objective measure, the primary locus of the criminal conduct at issue: firearms discharges (detected by automated recorders, not subject to “implicit bias”), violent-crime-related 911 calls, actual homicide victims—all these things are significantly less common in suburbs, and every sensible person knows that already.

Again we must dismiss actual data when we read that “The uncomfortable reality is that arrests and convictions for drug offenses—not violent crime—have propelled mass incarceration.” In state prisons, holding the largest number of incarcerated inmates, only 16 percent are drug offenders—54 percent of those incarcerated are violent offenders.

One could refute the specific criminal justice and drug use claims, and we shall try in one case. But we suspect that this is a trap. Every effort to rebut will be seen as confirmation of denial, even complicity, in American injustice. Even invoking the differential victimization of blacks by crime can be dismissed as pretext sustaining the system of injustice.

If you’re not troubled yet, you should be. The popularity of TNJC risks engendering a cycle of violent victimization of our most vulnerable citizens, who must depend on the criminal justice system to be their protector. The reality of black victimization requires us to strengthen, not condemn and abandon, institutions of law and order. TNJC makes telling the truth about our struggle on the streets an urgent duty.

The new students at Brown University, required to confront untrue charges that criminal justice in America is no more than an exercise in deliberate “mass incarceration,” should beware lest we fall prey to yet another “low, dishonest decade.”

Suspecting a trap when trying to take the stretch out of a ‘factual’ presentation? That is why there is trouble. Calling it dishonesty doesn’t go deep enough to explain the book and the tenacity with which its false reality is held. The popularity of such a book raises serious questions about just how serious many really are when it comes to solving serious problems of race and social behavior.

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Implications: the war on weapons

It was just a matter of hours before prominent Democrats politicized a tragic on air shooting and that a “fired former journalist known on camera as “Bryce Williams” who murdered two of his former collegues on air with a Glock 19 9mm pistol this morning was a black, gay, racist fan of serial killers” (Bob Owens). The White House spokesman denied reality by claiming that gun violence was an emerging problem. Another story was about the fact that many gun related crimes were committed with stolen weapons. There are a few things about that as well. Gun Free Zone” Laws Are Arming Criminals explains the problem.

We’ve noticed a trend in recent months of law enforcement officers having their personal vehicles and professional vehicles alike targeted by gun and tactical gear thieves … Law enforcement agencies need to radically revisit the concept of leaving guns in their unattended vehicles. They are not alone, as their civilian counterparts are discovering that they have much the same issue

The vehicle thefts are not inevitable, but are the direct result of concealed carriers being forced to leave their personal protection firearms in their vehicles in order to attend events in certain public or private spaces where guns have been banned.

Criminals then wander through the parking lots outside these locations—at malls, outside stadiums, in parking garages, at businesses, and on city streets—and look for vehicles that match a likely target profile.

That means, despite a denial of the reality of the correlation between allowing citizens to arm themselves and crime, there is also the reduce to the absurd in the belief that more guns mean more gun related crimes and that many efforts to eliminate guns have implications and side effects. Gun free zones have been known a ‘free target zones’ and now it is becoming evident that they can be resources for the acquisition of firearms by theft.

As the panelists on Fox Five said of Juan Williams on one of these arguments: “He’s carrying more water than an Alhambra truck” in trying to defend against reality. Juan is not alone.

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Marx and the evolution into the modern political conundrum

Scott S. Powell on The Quiet Revolution: How the New Left Took Over the Democratic Party:

In a free society, extreme and derivative ideologies from the destructive legacy of Marx, Lenin, and the Frankfurt School can find some appeal to the alienated and disaffected. A constitutional republic like the United States should have sufficient strength to withstand most contradictions and absurdities held by a relatively small minority.

The problem today is threefold: the Left’s wholesale domination of much of the knowledge industry, a growing uninformed and disengaged electorate, and a failing two-party system. The normal process of checks and balances, which is made possible when compromise can be accomplished between the parties, simply no longer works. With the long march through the institutions having resulted in one of those parties no longer sharing much in the way of common ground — in terms of a philosophical heritage and values of liberty, private property, and limited government — compromise has become nearly impossible. The radicalization of the Democratic Party has so affected Congress and the current president as to render bipartisan solutions and reconciliation all but impossible.

In the end, what is important for Americans to realize is that the experiment with a left-wing president, like Barack Obama, is less an aberration than the logical outcome of the transformation of both the Democratic Party and the American culture.

The big question is whether the nation can survive and prosper if the culture remains fractured with a majority adrift from the heritage, morality and values of liberty and personal responsibility that are at the heart of the Declaration and the Constitution.

There is worry … and reason for that worry. Lloyd Marcus describes on the efforts to leverage the plaints of the “alienated and disaffected” as Generations of Stolen Black Dreams.

In response to my article, “Please Tell Black Lives Matter to Shut Up and Go Away,” a sincere black activist emailed asking me with what would I replace it? I asked him to explain. The bottom line of his lengthy passionate reply is “Negroes” are still not free in America. He says America has reneged on its promise of liberty and justice for all.

So what is Obama’s solution to fixing these problems plaguing blacks? He lets drug dealers who prey on urban youths out of jail, claiming their crime is non-violent. He has his DOJ bully police across America to back off urban thugs. Obama minion Baltimore mayor said, “Let them loot. It’s only property.” Violent crime is up big-time in Chicago, New York and Baltimore.

Despite claims otherwise, America has not failed its poor. We have welfare and entitlement programs out the ying-yang; a huge chunk of America’s national debt.

Then there is the claim that America “systematically” and “institutionally” hinders opportunities for blacks. Hogwash! A black college professor friend heads a program offering blacks free college tuition. He has trouble finding applicants. This is a guy who worked his way through college and grad school. He was stunned when students thought having to pay their cell phone bill was a legitimate excuse for not purchasing the book and materials for his course.

Like formerly fat people who continue to see an obese person in the mirror, Democrats have ingrained in blacks that they are victims of an “eternally” racist America; despite glaring evidence proving otherwise.

Sadly, there are a large number of black Americans whose brains are entombed in a victim mindset; impenetrable by the truth. A prime example is the disgusting comments made by a black woman during a TV interview, expressing her support of a black youth. “He didn’t do no wrong. He just shot a cop.” This hateful woman is the equivalent of the KKK justifying killing blacks.

To my sincere black activist friend, I say we replace “Black Lives Matter” with “Tough Love.” Tell blacks to stop blaming whitey, seeking more doomed-to-fail government programs and voting for Democrats. Generations of black dreams have been stolen due to Democrats addicting blacks to government dependency

Today, liberals excuse irresponsible behavior, defending it with fancy intellectual sounding language. My late mom would simply say, “Stop acting stupid.”

Stop acting stupid black America. Stop acting stupid.

Yes, some are worried. But what to do when faced with such intransigence in denying reality? 

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The climate front

The debate has turned to argument and then gone sour. Climate Statism: Science, Poverty, Free Speech at Issue by Paul Driessen offers a description and a call to action.

It appears the Climate Crisis Industry has too much invested in climate catastrophes: prestige, political power, billions of dollars in research and renewable energy grants, and the desire to control energy use, livelihoods, living standards and entire economies.

Instead of reasoned debate, they continue to predict manmade climate chaos, and engage in increasingly vicious and vitriolic attacks on replicable evidence-based science; on the scientific method that brought centuries of profound planetary and human progress; and on any scientists, scholars or ethicists who raise inconvenient questions or threaten alarmist views, policies and funding.

They are also waging war on capitalism … on hydrocarbon energy … on poor, minority, blue-collar and working class families – and on the most powerless, destitute, deprived, diseased families on Earth.

Equally unsettling, in league with Liberal-Progressive-Leftist politicians, activists and media, climate alarmists are also attacking the very idea of free speech and open, robust debate.

Tactics used to advance the Climate Crisis agenda are too numerous to recount here, but many are shameful, intolerable, dishonest and even lethal.

It is the rational and logical vs the ideological and religious, intellectual integrity vs deceit and dishonesty. The stakes are very high.

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morally straight?

Some folks are not happy with the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) compromise on its oath to be “morally straight.” Surrender Like a Boy Scout by Selwyn Duke gets into why this is so.

Well, there’s a new scout survival skill for you. Perhaps now they’ll have courses in political expediency and realpolitik and merit badges in waving white flags and lying prostrate.

As far as the BSA’s mandate of creating boys with chests, the organization long had to fight the corruptive wider culture. But now it has collapsed, completely and likely irrevocably, its own internal culture. And for what? A slight reprieve? A stay of execution? Gates has said he didn’t foresee the rapid cultural changes (a tipping point, really) of the last several years. What he also doesn’t see is that he has merely “traded the Sudetenland for peace in our time.” And he will learn that this peace is fleeting with people whose “truth” changes with time, people who tolerate no dissent, honor no compromise, and take no prisoners.

There are some things that are not subject to a popular vote. That is what morality and ethics are all about.We know where it leads but it seems many want to deny the lessons of history and the lessons in the Bible. 

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What happened to history?

“The problem, however, is that reasonable men may be rarer than ever these days, and the substance of history has been all too often distorted by an elite class which is driven by a pursuit of political agendas.” — Lincoln vs. Lee: How History is Distorted to Preserve Legends By William Sullivan

The radical efforts to erase some symbols of the civil war are based on an ignorance of history. A failure to learn from history is bad enough. Distorting history to suit one’s preferences takes it to another level of deceit and dishonesty.

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Is the smoke clearing?

Perhaps the behavior is being noticed in the arguments about important political issues. For example. Kurt Schlichter says Gun Rights Advocates Have A Devastating New Argument Against Gun Control. Here It Is.

The fact is that there is no point in arguing with liberal gun-control advocates because their argument is never in good faith. They slander gun owners as murderers. They lie about their ultimate aim, which is to ban and confiscate all privately owned weapons. And they adopt a pose of reasonability, yet their position is not susceptible to change because of evidence, facts or law. None of those matter – they already have their conclusion. This has to do with power – their power.

You can’t argue with someone who is lying about his position or whose position is not based upon reason. You can talk all day about how crime has diminished where concealed carry is allowed, while it flourishes in Democrat blue cities where gun control is tightest. You can point to statistics showing that law-abiding citizens who carry legally are exponentially less likely to commit gun crimes than other people. You can cite examples of armed citizens protecting themselves and their communities with guns. You can offer government statistics showing how the typical American is at many times greater risk of death from an automobile crash, a fall, or poisoning than from murder by gun.

But none of that matters, because this debate is not about facts. It’s about power. The liberal anti-gun narrative is not aimed at creating the best public policy but at disarming citizens the liberal elite looks down upon – and for whom weapons represent their last-ditch ability to respond to liberal overreach.

In light of this sort of opposition, there is very little one can do as far as any debate goes. That means the argument proceeds to the next level and that is where the situation gets worrisome.-

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Careless language

Bruce Thornton gets into the The Truth About Western “Colonialism” amd “How the misuse of a term legitimizes the jihadist myth of Western guilt.” It’s about displacing blame as a propaganda tool.

This leftist interpretation of words like colonialism and imperialism transforms them into ideologically loaded terms that ultimately distort the tragic truths of history. They imply that Europe’s explorations and conquests constituted a new order of evil. In reality, the movements of peoples in search of resources, as well as the destruction of those already in possession of them, is the perennial dynamic of history.

Whether it was the Romans in Gaul, the Arabs throughout the Mediterranean and Southern Asia, the Huns in Eastern Europe, the Mongols in China, the Turks in the Middle East and the Balkans, the Bantu in southern Africa, the Khmer in East Asia, the Aztecs in Mexico, the Iroquois in the Northeast, or the Sioux throughout the Great Plains, human history has been stained by man’s continual use of brutal violence to acquire land and resources and destroy or replace those possessing them. Scholars may find subtle nuances of evil in the European version of this ubiquitous aggression, but for the victims such fine discriminations are irrelevant.

Yet this ideologically loaded and historically challenged use of words like “colonial” and “colonialist” remains rife in analyses of the century-long disorder in the Middle East. Both Islamists and Arab nationalists, with sympathy from the Western left, have blamed the European “colonialists” for the lack of development, political thuggery, and endemic violence whose roots lie mainly in tribal culture, illiberal shari’a law, and sectarian conflicts.

Colonialism and Imperialism were efforts to create a global community out of tribal cultures. In some places, the tribal ethos struggles to exist and that can create much strife. The mid-east provides the current example.

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GMO and FUD

William Saletan calls it an Unhealthy Fixation, that is “The war against genetically modified organisms is full of fearmongering, errors, and fraud. Labeling them will not make you safer.”

I’ve spent much of the past year digging into the evidence. Here’s what I’ve learned. First, it’s true that the issue is complicated. But the deeper you dig, the more fraud you find in the case against GMOs. It’s full of errors, fallacies, misconceptions, misrepresentations, and lies. The people who tell you that Monsanto is hiding the truth are themselves hiding evidence that their own allegations about GMOs are false. They’re counting on you to feel overwhelmed by the science and to accept, as a gut presumption, their message of distrust.

Some people, to this day, believe GE papayas are dangerous. They want more studies. They’ll always want more studies. They call themselves skeptics. But when you cling to an unsubstantiated belief, even after two decades of research and experience, that’s not skepticism. It’s dogma.

That’s the fundamental flaw in the anti-GMO movement. It only pretends to inform you. When you push past its dogmas and examine the evidence, you realize that the movement’s fixation on genetic engineering has been an enormous mistake. The principles it claims to stand for—environmental protection, public health, community agriculture—are better served by considering the facts of each case than by treating GMOs, categorically, as a proxy for all that’s wrong with the world. That’s the truth, in all its messy complexity. Too bad it won’t fit on a label.

One thing we’ve learned is that fear of GMOs is unfalsifiable. … Another thing we’ve learned is that it makes no sense to avoid GMOs based on standards that nobody applies to non-GMO food. … A third lesson is that GMO segregation, in the form of labels or GMO-free restaurants, is misguided. … The people who push GMO labels and GMO-free shopping aren’t informing you or protecting you. They’re using you.

That’s what genetic engineering can do for health and for our planet. The reason it hasn’t is that we’ve been stuck in a stupid, wasteful fight over GMOs. On one side is an army of quacks and pseudo-environmentalists waging a leftist war on science. On the other side are corporate cowards who would rather stick to profitable weed-killing than invest in products that might offend a suspicious public. The only way to end this fight is to educate ourselves and make it clear to everyone—European governments, trend-setting grocers, fad-hopping restaurant chains, research universities, and biotechnology investors—that we’re ready, as voters and consumers, to embrace nutritious, environmentally friendly food, no matter where it got its genes. We want our GMOs. Now, show us what you can do.

The behavior is the same as with climate change alarmists. The results with both false ideologies are to burden the less fortunate. In one case with an increased cost of food and in the other with an increased cost of energy. The advocates think they are doing “God’s work” but don’t seem to consider the implications of what they advocate nor to realize the depths to which they have sunk trying to rationalize and excuse their ideologies.

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The new religion

We have a Pope who, it seems, loves the poor to such an extent that he wants many more of them. Dennis Prager discusses the implications of The Pope and the Hammer and Sickle.

Last week the Marxist quasi-dictator of Bolivia, Evo Morales, presented Pope Francis with a gift: a carved wooden hammer and sickle cross on which the figure of Christ is crucified.

The pope’s acceptance of Morales’ gift — along with his attacks on capitalism during his Latin American tour — further confirms one of the most troubling moral developments of our time: The Roman Catholic Church is currently led by a man whose social, political and economic views have been shaped by Leftism more than by any other religious or moral system.

It also reconfirms what is probably the single most important development one needs to understand in order to make sense of the contemporary world: The most dynamic religion of the past hundred years has been Leftism — not Christianity or Islam or any other traditional religion. Indeed, regarding traditional religions, Leftism has influenced them — particularly Christianity and Judaism — far more than they have influenced the Left.

There could not have been a gift that more accurately represents this pope’s value system than Christ crucified on a hammer and sickle. First, in a literal sense, that is exactly what Communists have done wherever they have assumed power: crucified Christ by working to violently to destroy Christianity and murder Christians. Second, in a figurative sense, the gift represents the melange of Christianity and Marxism, precisely what much of the church, again especially in Latin America, and especially this pope stand for.

Tragically, we cannot turn to the contemporary Catholic Church. When the pope keeps a hammer and sickle crucifix; when the pope declares free market capitalism, the one economic system that has lifted masses of people out of poverty, to be largely evil (“the dung of the devil”); when Cuba’s Cardinal Jaime Ortega declares that there are no political prisoners in Cuba; and when the pope issues an encyclical on global warming while the oldest Christian communities in the world are exterminated, it is clear that while one can still turn to individual Catholic priests and lay leaders for moral guidance, one cannot turn to the Catholic Church and its pope for moral guidance.

On this same topic, David Robertson suggests that Pope Francis needs a PR person and a speech writer. [Post Updated]. “If Pope Francis wants to promote a Third Way, as opposed to promoting Communism or unfettered capitalism, then he needs to improve the way that he delivers his message.

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How it’s done: a towfer

Steve Tetreault reports that the New national monument blocks rail route to Yucca.

Besides preserving desert valleys and buffering a massive piece of modern sculpture, a new federal conservation area in rural Nevada carries another impact: It blocks a priority shipping route to Yucca Mountain.

So, first, is the ‘national monument’ route which doesn’t require any Congressional or public approval to implement then you block off a chunk of land to assert power and control for PC purposes and then choose that land so as to obstruct another problem.

Rather than turn Yucca Mountain into a nuclear reprocessing facility and energy resource, the effort is to kill it to cause constipation in the entire nuclear energy sector. That, in turn, makes the non-polluting energy source more expensive and that then helps the PC energy sources become more competitive as well as eliminating a vital resource for those most in need. 

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Character assasination

After the mob has moved on, we learn Nobel scientist Tim Hunt isn’t a sexist monster says Mary Katherine Ham.

Sir Tim Hunt, a scientist rather renowned for his skills, as his title suggests, in the United Kingdom before he spoke to a room full of scientists in Seoul, South Korea at the World Conference of Science Journalists in June. During a short speech or toast, Hunt made comments about women in science that perfectly fit into the left-leaning cultural critique of the scientific community as plagued by institutional sexism fueling underrepresentation of women.

A leaked report from an EU official’s investigation into the incident suggests there was much more to his comments and they bear out Hunt’s version of events and that he prefaced them by self-deprecatingly calling himself a “chauvinist monster” and rounded them out with a commendation of women scientists

The outrage industry made a stand, claimed a reputation, and moved on. End of Discussion. Someone should write a book about it.

The problem with such a smear is the same as the problem with climate change and many other issues: people accept the charges with no questions and do not consider the implications, sources, or evidence. Then they become attached to their alternate reality in such a way they must defend it at any cost. The result is tragic on all fronts.

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Government burning man

Ed Morrissey notes an example of government wielding its power in an extortion attempt to provide for the luxury of its bureaucrats. BLM: Say, maybe our demand that Burning Man supply us with on-demand ice cream was a little much.

For almost thirty years organizers have staged the Burning Man festival, starting off on the beaches of San Francisco and then out to the desert in northern Nevada. It’s akin to the Woodstock festival, focusing on both art and music where “radical self expression” meets “radical self-reliance” to form an intentional but temporary community. The use of the desert emphasizes the self-reliance, but it also requires Burning Man to get permits from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Organizers wanted to move the festival to a larger area thanks to its growing popularity, and BLM said, sure — as long as Burning Man builds them a compound for BLM staffers with washers, dryers, and an endless supply of food (via The Hill).

Burning Man doesn’t sound like my cup of tea, but neither does strong-arming citizens for the use of public land as an excuse to pamper a bunch of public servants. Perhaps this part of radical self-reliance will rub off on BLM officials — and maybe it will prove instructive for those who see government as a solution to everything, especially land management.

When you go out to get in touch with nature, notice who has the best equipment, the newest trucks and toys, the fanciest gear. It is the same group that is always crying about a shortage of funds and charging you exorbitant fees to use public lands. And woe be unto you if you don’t toe the line!

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Just what is science, anyway?

Matt Ridley worries about The Climate Wars’ Damage to Science. Scandals and politics and ideology all wreak havoc.

None of this would matter if it was just scientific inquiry, though that rarely comes cheap in itself. The big difference is that these scientists who insist that we take their word for it, and who get cross if we don’t, are also asking us to make huge, expensive and risky changes to the world economy and to people’s livelihoods. They want us to spend a fortune getting emissions down as soon as possible. And they want us to do that even if it hurts poor people today, because, they say, their grandchildren (who, as Nigel Lawson points out, in The Facts, and their models assume, are going to be very wealthy) matter more.

Yet they are not prepared to debate the science behind their concern. That seems wrong to me.

On the bright side, there is debate based on intellectual integrity and reality. It just isn’t in the usual and normal – old school – methods the establishment still holds dear such as ‘scientific’ journals. The topic is also polluted by a propaganda machine pushed by the MSM and activist groups. Getting through the noise is perhaps a tougher challenge than it has been in the past but that may be that now we can just see the noise a bit better. 

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The red Pope?

Two comments regarding the Pope’s latest encyclical provide a bit of understanding about weakness and humanity.

Warner Todd Huston thinks that It is Now Indisputable That Pope Francis is a Risible Communist.

From now on, Pope Francis should be utterly dismissed as an important leader of the world. His latest global warming “encyclical” has proven he subscribes to a risible, anti-western and anti-capitalist theology and is less a Catholic than a communist.

In this message–which lays out this terrible pope’s absurd ideas on his new religion of global warming–says that we need to stop buying things and turn the world back several thousand years to a time when life was brutal, uncomfortable, and short. He is essentially calling for an end to capitalism in this rambling paper.

Pope Francis goes on to claim that wealthy countries need to stop being wealthy and give away everything to the supposedly poorer nations but he doesn’t spend a second coming to term with why they are poor. He just assumes that rich nations are greedy and evil and must stop being so wealthy. This is quite a communistic theme.

On a bit less heated level is Dr. Tim Ball wondering Is The Catholic Church Burned By The Sun Again?.

The distorted headline provides context for disturbing evidence that the Vatican does not know its science, any more than it did 400 years earlier. Their position is a matter of faith not facts, evidence, or science. With great irony, lack of knowledge about the sun is central again. Item 23 of the Encyclical provides all the information we need to show they don’t understand the science and, therefore, cannot understand how it is misused.

the position of the Vatican set out in the Encyclical is a matter of faith, not science. It appears that they are getting burned again, which sadly suggests they didn’t learn from history.

The matter is that of false witness as described in Exodus 20:16. If you cannot accurately testify to the nature of God’s work, including the progress of man away from poverty and in stewardship of the planet, there is indeed reason to question your motives and ability to serve as a reliable witness.

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Explaining the Pope

Gene M. Van Son explains why Francis is not the Left’s Pope.

In fact everything Pope Francis has said regarding marriage, family, divorce, contraception, homosexuality, women’s ordination — and economics — has been perfectly in line with traditional Catholic teaching. And while he is all for helping the poor and is against greed and crony capitalism, he does not support liberation theology, and he is not a socialist or a communist.

The issues have nuance and it is easy to suffer misperceptions if words are used in more of an ideologic manner without appropriate care. For instance:

Regarding economics, in a January interview in the Italian journal La Stampa, Francis — yet again — clarified his views on capitalism, saying, “When money, instead of man, is at the center of the system, when money becomes an idol, men and women are reduced to simple instruments of a social and economic system.” He added that “We need ethics in the economy, and we also need ethics in politics.”

The problem here is that capitalism, as Professor Walter Williams explains, is an economic system based on service to individuals. The very core of the economic system is that man, not money, is at the center of the system. Yes, capital is needed in order to provide the entrepreneur the resources to provide a service or product but, unless that service or product does not serve individuals who make choices one a a time, the capital will not yield any return. You can clarify views on capitalism all you want but unless you make it clear that fundamental basis of the system and its primary reason for its contributions to humanity is service to people and not money gamemanship, one will remain misunderstood.

A capitalist who makes money his idol looses focus on his market. When that happens, the capitalist looses his money as well as his market. He forgets that his business success in based on providing people with something they want or need and that wealth, both financial and otherwise, comes from that service to humans. Confusing the need for funds with the use of those funds is a propaganda tactic often used to malign capitalism. One needs to be careful with how one uses words and associates them with other concepts and it is this area that the Pope has created sufficient worry for articles trying to clarify his point of view.

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Marking the decent

Victor Davis Hanson on Building the New Dark-Age Mind. “America’s descent into the Dark Ages will not end well. It never has in the past.”

Current popular culture is not empirically grounded, but operates on the premise that truth is socially constructed by race, class, and gender concerns. … Science, logic, probability, evidence — all these cornerstones of the Enlightenment — now mean little in comparison to the race, class, and gender of those who offer narratives deemed socially useful.

Eric Holder called the nation “cowards” for not holding a national conversation on race. But Holder did not wish a freewheeling discussion about the break-up of the black family, the epidemic of violence and drug use, the cult of the macho male, the baleful role of anti-police rhetoric and rap music — in addition to current racism, a sluggish economy, and the wages of past apartheid. Instead, the ground rules of racial discussion were again to be anti-Enlightenment to the core. One must not cite the extraordinary disproportionate crime rate of inner-city black males, or the lack of inspired black leadership at the national level. One most certainly does not suggest that other minority groups either do not promote leaders like Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson or do not seem to have a need for national collective spokespeople at all.

In our current Dark Age, logic is ignored in lieu of ideology.

Scary stuff: Toss the Western Civilization we inherited and go for tribal Africa as a model. 

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