Archive for Justice and Law

Pick a target, Never give up. Never surrender.

Exxon has long been a target of the green movement. Now, it’s Schneiderman’s Climate Inquisition — “New York’s attorney general launches a bid to criminalize skepticism“.

what has inflamed progressives, and given impetus to the New York investigation, is the revelation that Exxon has given money to conservative organizations that oppose the extreme policy proposals of climate alarmists. Or, to use the New York Times’s tendentious description, the company may have played a role in “directing campaigns of climate denial, usually by libertarian-leaning political groups.”

The theory is tenuous, but the endgame is clear: to force Exxon and other companies to settle. Even when the underlying legal theory is frivolous, responding to a subpoena like the one served on Exxon—which seeks nearly 30 years of records—presents high financial and reputational costs. Moreover, the risk of criminal prosecution is one that most companies, particularly publicly-traded companies, can’t afford to take. Peabody Energy has already buckled under the threat of prosecution. After a few more energy companies embrace climate alarmism to avoid the taint of prosecution, the rest of the industry will be sufficiently intimidated to pull any funding from groups that question “established climate science.”

Progressives like to claim that there is an overwhelming consensus in favor of radical action on climate change. That may not currently be true, but it certainly will be once climate dissent is outlawed.

Not only is the effort to silence dissidents, it is to punish them and profit in the process. There seems to be a book on how to abuse prosecutorial discretion for ideological ends. The NY AG isn’t alone. Consider what has happened in the US AG’s office regarding, for instance, Black Panthers monitoring polling places. Then take a look at recent stories about how the LA police steal weapons from burglarized homes. 

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Considering FUD via ignorance: data mining edition

Brandon Valeriano takes on Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt Stoked by Bond and other fiction, our fear of surveillance is worse than the real thing.

There is a real need to rectify our fears and align them with the realities of cyber-conflict. Yes, we face a growing number of attacks online, but their impact and severity are not increasing. To secure this fragile stability, we need to take an approach that will ensure that those attacks and breaches that are bound to occur are kept as limited as possible.

The recent coverage of the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (CISA) passed by the US senate only reinforces the view that the fears we construct are often the greatest danger to our security. An all-knowing security surveillance programme is beyond our capabilities at the moment, but by preventing government and commercial organisations from making best use of the information available to them, we’re leaving ourselves vulnerable.

Chasing rabbits, it is chasing rabbits. Too many of them going in too many different directions and you can’t live off them because they lack nutrients humans need to survive. But many who don’t know do it anyway. They buy protections they don’t really need and push for laws that weigh heavily in dangerous directions.

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PC BLM and why no solution is in sight

Colin Flaherty provides examples of Cops Fired For Telling the Truth about Black Violence.

“President Obama is proud of his support for Black Lives Matter. He calls stories of elevated black crime and violence “anecdotal” and says a history of racism in America justifies whatever Black Lives Matter says or does.

It matters to Chief Halstead.

After he was fired this month, Chief Halstead broke it down on Fox and Friends: Black Lives Matter is “a terrorist group if you can march down the streets and call for the deaths of police officers,” he said, pointing to videos showing protesters chanting, “pigs in a blanket, fry ’em like bacon” and chanting about “dead cops.”

Both of those officers knew the risks to themselves their careers before speaking out about the threat of black violence and Black Lives Matter. Both knew the people they were sworn to serve needed to know what reporters and public officials most often try to ignore, deny, condone, excuse, encourage and even lie about: that black crime is wildly out of proportion.

They took the risk. They paid the price. That is what heroes do.

Why are blacks over-represented in jail populations? They are arrested, tried, and convicted more often than other racial groups. Why is that? Perhaps the reason is related to why inner city violence tends to be concentrated in black communities. But, for the left, reality doesn’t matter. The presumption is ‘white privilege’ so blacks become a ‘protected minority’ – isn’t protected a form of privilege? – and jails are emptied because it is obvious to the left that that is the only way to correct an injustice.

Meanwhile, crime rates go up with repeat offenders, black on white crime escalates, and denial runs rampant trying to pretend that what they eye sees isn’t what is really there. Problems get worse, not better. How long will that continue? Why are lessons from history ignored?

Update: HEATHER MAC DONALD Heather Mac Donald in Testimony before the United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary, October 19, 2015 regarding The Myth of Criminal-Justice Racism.

The most dangerous misconception about our criminal justice system is that it is pervaded by racial bias. For decades, criminologists have tried to find evidence proving that the overrepresentation of blacks in prison is due to systemic racial inequity. That effort has always come up short. In fact, racial differences in offending account for the disproportionate representation of blacks in prison. A 1994 Justice Department survey of felony cases from the country’s 75 largest urban areas found that blacks actually had a lower chance of prosecution following a felony than whites. Following conviction, blacks were more likely to be sentenced to prison, however, due to their more extensive criminal histories and the gravity of their current offense.

Violent crime is currently shooting up again in cities across the country. Police officers are backing away from proactive enforcement in response to the yearlong campaign that holds that police are the greatest threat facing young black men today. Officers encounter increasing hostility and resistance when they make a lawful arrest.

Some are taking note, others look away. Same ol’ story. What will it take for reality to intrude such that it can’t be ignored?

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Banana Republic: respect for law perhaps biggest casualty

As IDB reports it:

Lerner was caught red-handed targeting Tea Party and other conservative groups, wrote partisan emails to prove it, then engaged in a massive cover-up effort — with a suspiciously crashed server, an oddly missing BlackBerry and plenty of excuses.

She evaded even more accountability by shielding herself with the Fifth Amendment in Congress. The consequences to her have been . .. retirement on a full pension with all her bonuses to a multimillion-dollar mansion in the deep D.C. suburbs.
As for her victims — and they were many — there is no justice. Now everyone, no matter what their political leanings, will wonder if they too are a political target by an out-of-control agency protected by the Justice Department.
Because that’s the real consequence of this failure to hold Lerner accountable: A precedent has been set.

Remember the case against the Black Panthers regarding voter intimidation? But, of course, the Lerner episode is put down as just ‘managerial incompetence’ with Democrats railing about how much money was spent investigating IRS corruption – conducting hearings where Lerner plead the fifth.

Jazz Shaw describes the result as The Banana Republic of America.

But what if the case never even makes it into the system? If a crime is perceived by the public to have been committed but the government fails to even attempt the prosecution a new problem emerges. Kevin D. Williamson at National Review has looked over the Justice Department’s decision not to pursue a case against Lois Lerner (or anyone at the IRS) and determined that we may be approaching Banana Republic status.

Then look at the Bengahzi hearings. People cheered when Clinton laughed at the efforts of an Ambassador to prevent himself from being dragged through the streets, abused, and killed. Banana Republic, indeed.

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Protect, Defend, Toe the line, no matter the cost

You’d think it can’t happen here. The authors of the fourth amendment to the Constitution said it shouldn’t. Wisconsin Democrats disagree.

Even Steineke was left stunned after the votes were tallied: “As much as I hate to admit it, every member of the Democrat party in the WI Assembly voted against these reforms that would protect their constituencies from unwarranted searches and abuse from their government.”

The vote to reform the John Doe laws, to protect our citizens and ensure people are safe in their own homes is not part of the Democrats agenda here in Wisconsin. Their agenda is partisan politics at their worst.

Jennifer Jacques tells the story: Wisconsin Democrats not particularly interested in protecting citizens’ rights. The same story is evident in the Benghazi hearings.

Every citizen in Wisconsin, and even across the United States, needs to know that Assembly Bill 68 was crafted to ensure that no one, regardless of color, creed, or political party, would be awoken to early morning raids by paramilitary teams, held at gunpoint while their homes are ransacked and property seized, simply for engaging in a constitutional right of free speech. And every single citizen needs to be acutely aware that every Representative from the Democrat party refused to vote in favor of protecting the constitutional rights of Wisconsinites.

The agenda of the new Democratic party is not to protect citizens’ rights, but instead to preserve and push their own progressive wishes. And may God have mercy on anyone who gets in their way.

The John Doe raids provide an example of just how far one party is willing to go and how solid a block they are in pursuing the assault on those that oppose them. The RICO allegations against those who question catastrophic human caused climate change provide another example. The recent 2nd Circuit attempt to under-read the Supreme Court on gun control is another.

Worried, yet?

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Ahmed’s clock

If there is any greater testament to failures in public schools, the recent saga of a 9th grader with a homebrew electronic clock should rank right up there.

I have to say, if I were a teacher and a student had a device that looked like this and started beeping during class, I’d be a little nervous too. Imagine how the Secret Service would react if it had been mailed to the White House: [Ed Driscoll]

A bomb has one major ingredient – the explosive. This is a mass of some chemical that can blow up. Do you see anything in the picture of Ahmed’s clock where there is any significant mass of something that could blow up? Or consider the Boston Bomber and his pressure cooker pots. Those were containers, like pipes with caps on each end, that could hold some explosive and provide a containment that could enhance the effect.

In this case, it was funny noises and perhaps some flashing LED’s and wires that caused the alarm. In microcontroller cook-books, making a beep and flashing a light are the first things you learn how to do. The biggest question is why Ahmed left the battery connected after the first period teacher told him he ought not show it to other teachers.

There is a lot of talk about wanting more students in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM subjects). It is one thing for a pundit like Driscoll to be paranoid about anything electronic, but any high school teacher? and administrators? and cops? Avocational interests are fundamental to STEM pursuits and the Maker’s communities [see Makezine] show just how much of a need there is to share ideas, show off work results, and socialize with others of the same mind. That is why, perhaps, that community is all in a tizzy about Ahmed’s clock. It is yet another illustration of just what modern school systems, the establishment, thinks of geeks and nerds. It is fortunate for society that, so far, word about such atrocities as Ahmed’s clock get out and support for reason gets voiced.

Update: Here’s Dave Jone’s rant at EEVblog eevBLAB #14 – 14yo Hobbyist Arrested For Bringing DIY Clock To School and Hackaday explains why you should build a clock for social good this week. It should also be noted that the very quick invite to the White House appears to have a racial twinge – Ahmed was a victim of white privilege or something and had the appearance of a protected minority.

Update 2 – Reverse Engineering Ahmed Mohamed’s Clock… and Ourselves. Yep: looks like the kid found an 80’s digital alarm clock and re-packaged it in a pencil case off Amazon. This rather fits with the idea of a precocious 9th grader out to tweak teachers. He shoulda’ been guided to more modern, microcontroller based, ideas and ongoing development of add-on features. Instead, the schools provided destructive feedback. Rather than encourage technical education and experimentation, the positive feedback was directed towards social disruption and disorder. Modern school systems in a nutshell.

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Sportsmanlike conduct

Deron Snyder thinks the Patriots have been America’s most hated team this century — to some. The thing is, what he describes of football hate is also relevant to the current debate about rape on campus, the Black Lives Matter rioting, and politically driven prosecution.

The piling on since “Deflategate” has been unseemly, unsightly and plain ol’ ugly, enough to make this Patriots anti-fan raise his voice in support.

I didn’t think critics could be more petty after expressing their outrage over the air pressure in some footballs.

Considering that many of the sources hail from teams that lost to the Patriots, you have to wonder what percentage of their gripes are sour grapes. There’s a whole lot of “I have a feeling” and “I just know,” but not much that can be verified.

There’s no defense against a nagging sense or widely-held assumption that you did something wrong.

That’s why the ordeal of dredging up unsubstantiated accusation from decades ago is an exercise in futility … unless the objective is providing ammo to shoot down Belichick and Brady.

In that case, mission accomplished, though the haters are firing blanks.

While the NFL is a business dripping in money, it is also a sport. The conduct of the players. coaches, and league officials as highlighted by Snyder are well outside the realm of sportsmanlike conduct. Firing blanks? talk to Scooter Libby about that …

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Insanity, firearms edition

Chris Cox notes how Gun-phobics target tragedy – “Second Amendment opponents ignore the reason bullets fly.”

And it’s not just politicians who use this craven strategy. Anti-gun groups, such as Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety, use it to advance their anti-gun agenda and even raise money. Immediately following a tragedy, they push emotional appeals to promote their cause and declare, “enough is enough.” Unfortunately, they offer no real solutions to the problems of violence in our communities — just the same rhetoric, devoid of common sense, logic or even the smallest connection to reality. In the case of expanded background checks, why would we expand something that is not working in the first place?

Irrationality driving an attempt to limit the rights to self defense. At the same time, another column castigates an elected official for denying rights to gays by refusing to sign marriage licenses.

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Just what is the Law, anyway

Victor Davis Hanson: America’s descent into lawlessness – “Chaos reigns when the law favors protected individuals and groups.”

America is becoming analogous to the mess in lawless contemporary Venezuela. When the law is suspended or unevenly applied for politically protected individuals and groups, then there is no law.

We are now seeing the logical descent into the abyss of chaos.

From Scooter Libby to Kim Davis with Lerner, Obama, sanctuary cities, et al in between.

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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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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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Trying to figure out what is bothersome

Jazz Shaw finally found it. Something about the Hastert case didn’t feel right but couldn’t pin it down until Connor Friedersdorf at the Atlantic provided the proper analogy. So evading government scrutiny is a crime. Why?.

Let’s toss in one more hypothetical from Friedersdorf just to drive the point home.

What if the government installed surveillance cameras on various streets in a municipality and then made it a crime to walk along a route that skirted those cameras?

That’s it in a nutshell.

This is behind why the extension of the PATRIOT Act caused so much rancor. The telephone records data mining effort is like the surveillance cameras and it bothers people that there is no way to get out of sight, to take another route, to avoid getting hassled for trying to avoid governmental snooping. The abuse of prosecutorial discretion in going after political enemies is a realized fear and the Hastert case is looking to be another example in such efforts. 

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Politicizing prosecution

Several cases have surface recently that raise questions about the motivation behind the search for criminal misconduct. Scott Horton describes The Thin Gruel of the Hastert Prosecution — “We should all be concerned about Dennis Hastert’s strange indictment“.

The fundamental problem in the Hastert case is simple: what, exactly, is the crime? As presented, the crime consists of a series of structured withdrawals supposedly designed to avoid a reporting duty, about which Hastert misled federal agents when they questioned him. This is not only extraordinarily thin gruel, it is also ripe for abuse. Keep in mind that the prostitution scandal that was manipulated by a Bush-era prosecutor to end the career of Eliot Spitzer was also triggered by similar bank payment reports.

Another case is described by Armstrong Williams suggesting that a South Dakota ‘voter fraud’ case deserves more attention.

The 43-year-old Sioux Falls physician was accused by State Attorney General Marty Jackley of having committed what is commonly referred to as “voter fraud.” Specifically, she had been indicted for having turned in nominating petitions that include the names of people whose signatures she did not personally witness.

That she did so is not in dispute; how the doctor has been treated very much is. According to ballot access activist Paul Jacob, Mr. Jackley’s “threatened penalty is the most severe any American has ever faced on a petition-related charge,” while “the transgressions alleged against Dr. Bosworth are arguably the least sinister” the activist has ever seen brought to trial.

Then there’s the Oregon case where the allegation is that the prosecution colluded with an LGBT group in going after a $135k discrimination claim. The Orange County disqualification of all of its lawyers in the district attorney’s office in a capital murder case is another problem in this vein.

These prosecutions are only the active half. The other half can be seen in Baltimore, New York, and other places where Police are inhibited in their efforts to tackle crime by political demands. Then there is the judicial front such as in the suit to stop the mainlining illegal immigrants. The war is on many fronts in may different ways.

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Righteous Anger

Lloyd Marcus says it is Another Thrilling Episode of Blacks Behaving Badly and he isn’t happy.

How do you expect black youths to react to the Left’s orchestrated campaign to convince them that white Republicans and conservatives are racist and out to get them, that white cops murder them at will, that the rich got rich stealing from them, and that business owners are selfish and evil?

These lies have been sold to black youths by the highest black voices in the country — Obama, Oprah, Sharpton, Holder, Jackson, the NAACP, the Congressional Black Caucus, and assorted other race exploiting scumbags. …if I sound angry, it is because I am.

What was that mantra George’s dad on “Seinfeld” used to keep calm? Oh yeah, he said, “Serenity now! Serenity now!”

Enough with this hogwash that Christians should not get angry. The bad behavior destroying peoples’ livelihood in Baltimore and the “nuanced” response to it should make decent honorable people angry.

The Baltimore riots and other incidents of black mob attacks and assaults on innocent whites across America are the result of the Left’s hoax that blacks are victimized in America; perpetrating hate for political gain. Such evil should make decent Americans angry.

When Jesus turned over the tables of the crooks in the temple, he was angry. Jesus even called evildoers names, “Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?” Jesus pretty much expressed my thoughts regarding modern-day black so-called civil rights leaders.

I am sick of it, folks — liberal officials, liberal talking heads, and liberal media justifying, tolerating, and even celebrating bad behavior.

He isn’t the only one. There is that ‘Mom in the Yellow Shirt’ captured on video. She recognized her son, grabbed him, and gave him the ‘what for’ to prevent him from joining the willding on the streets. But then there’s the President blaming Republicans for not caving sufficiently to inner city money grabs. You’d think violent proof of failed policies over forty or fifty years would start to sink in. The righteous anger is for those who will not learn and support and condone behavior that destroys communities and lives en masse.

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Thought patrols and oppression supression

“The basis for this was the campaign-finance reform movement, which sees money in politics as a greater evil than a government empowered to shut down political speech. The John Doe law in Wisconsin shows exactly why government intervention in political speech is worse than any corruption it attempts to prevent. The use of force in Wisconsin got applied to one side exclusively, and intended to shut down conservatives before they could exercise their legitimate political power. It’s even more egregious than the IRS targeting of conservatives between 2009-2013, but it’s the same kind of abuse of power, and it leverages the same kind of campaign-finance reform statutes that give government at state and federal levels entrée to control political speech.”

Ed Morrissey on the Wisconsin efforts to silence certain political critics: “I thought it was a home invasion” — and it was

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Double Down: propagating the propaganda to the bitter end

Two stories illustrate how deep the delusion runs. Clarice Feldman describes how New revelation helps exonerate Scooter Libby and Jack Cashill goes into What Columbia Missed In Its Review of Rolling Stone.

In a book just released, The Story: A Reporter’s Journey, Judith Miller, a key witness in the Libby prosecution, states that Patrick Fitzgerald had offered repeatedly to drop all charges against Lewis Libby if he would “deliver” Vice President Cheney to him.

That’s one victim. The other case attempted to smear a fraternity but the news reporting became a celebrity case itself so a journalism school was tasked to find out what went wrong.

With much ado, Columbia responded. Its 13,000-word report identified problems in “reporting, editing, editorial supervision and fact-checking.” This was all true enough, but Columbia missed the real problem. As I document in my forthcoming book, Scarlet Letters, cases like the Rolling Stone’s have become so common because those perpetrating a given fraud almost inevitably advance causes that the cultural establishment, the Columbia faculty included, wants to see advanced.

In both these cases, political ideology has swept aside truth, reality, and anyone in the way. When that happens, people get sacrificed for the cause. No wonder there have been reports about how the Russians are trying to put Stalin back on a pedestal by rationalizing what he did to so many of their fellow countrymen. It almost seems like the old medical practice of blood letting to cure anemia.

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BMV, the Blowhard, and reality. Because: racism, of course.

Colin Flaherty says Spring Break Violence is a Black College Thing. What got him started was an episode of Juan Williams trying to school Bill O’Reilly.

Williams reminded O’Reilly of Freaknik, the annual celebration of black violence and anarchy that got so bad that even the Chocolate City of Atlanta had to pull the welcome mat. Then he mentioned Urban Beach Week in Miami Beach — only reporters call it anything but Black Beach Week — and how that was a celebration of chaos and violence as well.

The annual mayhem continued until 2013, when city officials ran out of ways to describe the “living hell” that 400,000 black people created in Miami Beach. So they turned that small town into a large armed camp.

Today, lots of attendees complain how the cops, the towers, the dogs, the drones, the license plate scanners, the lights, the Homeland Security and the cameras are all killing their buzz. And attendance is down.

large-scale and persistent mob violence during Spring Break is a black thing. Or as the t-shirts say: A Black College Thing.

This is a very long list of black parties that wore out their welcome after several years — and angry city officials determined to never allow that to happen in their towns again.

Most of these large gatherings of black people were cancelled or discouraged after repeated and long-term violence, property damage, lawlessness, fights with police and trash. Always mountains of trash.

There is a problem. Whether it is the mob violence or the blind eye towards seeing it for what it is, there is a problem. It isn’t getting better. Black Mob Violence (BMV) is a perpetrator in a privileged class trying to pretend it is a victim. There is a lot of sympathy for the claim. One can wonder why, but not out loud.

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Fear mongering despite reality: the right to self defense

There is something about guns:

“What if someone who spies you walking down the street thinks you look suspicious? What if you become a target for would-be George Zimmermans? Or what if the man you argue with, or potentially insult or offend, even unintentionally, is armed and irascible—and the argument escalates?”

“The gun-rights movement claims it is a staunch defender of the peace, contributing to and bolstering law and order. As gun rights are currently advanced, nothing could be further from the truth.”

“LaPierre’s argument for being armed boils down to this: Americans are on the verge of—or already sinking into—a state of anarchy, where it is each man for himself. In that state, “the government can’t—or won’t—protect you…Only you can protect you,” he warns.”

“The cumulative effect of these efforts is a society where security must be upheld or enforced by individual gun owners, who could misperceive what justice demands in any given situation. Our police have a hard enough time with this task. Consider the controversies in Ferguson, Missouri, and Staten Island last year, where unarmed black men, implicated in minor crimes, died because police used excessive force.”

“A common feature of the many police shootings perpetrated over the last year, and highlighted in the media during and after Ferguson, is that police now assume their suspects to be armed. Given the state of affairs the NRA has fostered, this may be a prudent and understandable assumption. But it also means police are instinctively cautious, hostile, and all too ready to use their weapons against ordinary citizens. In an over-armed society, we may also expect to see a steady uptick in the number of cases involving police brutality or excessive force. And then, as the NRA would have it, the government is most fully and clearly the people’s enemy, too.”

How Gun Rights Harm the Rule of Law – “Second Amendment activists are redefining the public sphere, and with it, American democracy” by Firman Debrander provides an illustration of how modern debate is often not much more than irrational argument. In terms of the quote above, consider that the assertions about the Zimmerman and other cases are contrary to fact and that the assertion about the “gun-rights movement claims” is an ad hominem straw man. There is no substance in the essay. There is only fear about what is imagined might be that hasn’t any historical basis to support it. 

The facts are that the increase in legal gun ownership has resulted in a decrease in crime and that gun control laws have not been show to have any influence on whether or not the police will encounter armed criminals. The redefinition of American democracy lies at the feet of those who insist on redefining the second amendment and impugn the character of the American citizen by asserting that they will become violent criminals unless restrained by a benevolent government. 

Just how can you debate anything with someone who wants his own reality no matter how distant it is from the truth on the ground?

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