Thursday, January 30, 2020

Barr defending Christianity

Over at The Federalist Joy Pullmann has an article on our Attorney General, William Barr, and his defense of religious liberty and freedom. Now, I know that Barr is not good on guns. No, that's not quite right, in fact he is terrible on guns. But, for me, guns are a means to an end, not an end in and of itself. The actual ends are the other natural rights mentioned in the Bill of Rights. The Right to Keep and Bear arms, which I believe is a civic duty for everyone, is to ensure that government does not strip these rights from citizens.

Pullmann's article is entitled Barr: The Real People Trying To 'Impose Their Values' On Others Are 'Militant Secularists.'   She starts out by quoting a Barr in an interview with with Cardinal Timothy Dolan:
U.S. Attorney General William Barr clapped back at leftwing hysteria over his support of the First Amendment Tuesday in an interview with Cardinal Timothy Dolan on Sirius XM.
“I feel today religion is being driven out of the marketplace of ideas and there’s a organized militant secular effort to drive religion out of our lives,” Barr told Dolan. “To me the problem today is not that religious people are trying to impose their views on nonreligious people, it’s the opposite — it’s that militant secularists are trying to impose their values on religious people and they’re not accommodating the freedom of religion of people of faith.”
She goes on to make her case with quotes from articles in the New York press.  She goes on to state that the so called atheists trying drive Christianity (but not Islam) from the public square are just as much regligions in the end:
Further, what is more cultish than forcing people to believe through social pressure, law, and other means that a man is a woman is a man is a woman? What is more totalitarian than to force people to pretend that males and females are interchangeable inside the relationship whose major function in society is to spend half a livetime cultivating happy, competent citizens starting at conception?
Or what is, for another example, the belief that it is possible to fix the world by applying government pressure? That is not a belief that can be wholly validated by research or experience. In fact, research and experience both indicate that central planning usually makes life even more nasty, brutish, and short.
So what is this unfounded, undocumented, unprovable faith in government power to correct human psyches and behavior if not a religious (metaphysical) belief? It is also an unprovable and metaphysical belief about what a human is — a thing that can be “corrected” by politics and whose “error” is not intrinsic to itself. Again, these are all metaphysical, religious beliefs with no empirical basis or possibility of being fully empirically proven.
The Founders put religion first in the First Amendment:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
They did this because they wanted to keep government within due bounds, and they knew that religion can generate conflict. They had seen it in the old world.  Today it is Christianity that is being systematically erased.  It was never the intention of the Founders that the government would chase Christianity from the public square, or indeed any other religion.  This is a gross misreading of the Constitution.

Barr is to be praised for his defense of Constitutional rights.  A vigorous competition between various ideas, even religions, ensures that the truth will be out there, and that the Truth will eventually win out.  Too bad he doesn't feel the same way about guns.

Monday, January 27, 2020

Is It Time For Congress To Re-evaulate The Civil Service

I have tried to stay out of the whole Trump impeachment fiasco.  I believe Trump will eventually be exonerated, and likely be re-elected.  But I wanted to take some time today to talk a bit about something I believe is relevant to the Constitution and our rights as human beings.  Jim Hanson has an article over at The Federalist today entitled Alex Vindman Is Living, Breathing Proof That The Deep State Exists, And That It Is Corrupt that talks to the issue of the rights and privileges of elected officials versus those of the permanent bureaucrats.

Hanson starts off by pointing out that he is not questioning Vindman's loyalty, patriotism, or devotion to duty.  He is, however, questioning his judgement as to where that duty lies.  Each person in the armed services takes an oath to defend the Constitution of the United States.  But that Constitution places the President as the top of his chain of command.  Unless the President is clearly giving an Unconstitutional order, Vindman's actions sabotaging this President are at his own peril.

Hanson goes on to define the term "Deep State" as follows:
Deep State (noun): The permanent, professional bureaucracy of the U.S. government, specifically those who believe their judgment and continual service makes them better suited to run the country than elected officials or political appointees.
That’s accurate, but to expand on why it matters, we should note the political contributions of federal employees in the last presidential election went 95 percent to Hillary Clinton. There is nothing illegal or nefarious about that, but it certainly points out the one-sided political nature of this cohort. While they may not openly organize into political action committees, their hold on federal levers of power dangerously skews government’s actions and inactions toward the preferences of the political left.
The fact is that Vindman's pique with President Trump's foreign policy is that it somehow goes against what Vindman calls the "interagency" assessment of what is in the nation's interests.  I can not think of a more totalitarian idea than that a duly elected President, elected by the whole people, after campaigning in state after state on the issues, does not know what the people think is in their best interests. That a Lieutenant Colonel, a mid level officer of no particular distinction has the temerity to believe himself wiser than his superior officers or even his Commander in Chief is simply breathtaking.

President Trump campaigned on, among other ideas, the idea of placing America first on issues of foreign policy.  Everyone who voted for Trump was aware of his campaign and evidently approved of it.  For Vindman to later claim that he knows better than the all those people is extremely narcissistic.  /That he would sabotage the President's foreign policy and substitute what he refers to as the 'interagency' assessment is gross insubordination.  Why is he still here?

Please read the entire article.  It is my opinion that Congress should re-evaluate the Civil Service.  I believe that the permanent bureaucracy has become a danger to the our Constitutional form of government and to our rights. 

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Another Article On The .38 Super Automatic Cartridge and the .38 Super Automatic Colt Pistol

Have I mentioned my fondness for the venerable .38 Super Automatic cartridge, and of course, the weapon designed to fire it, the Model 1911 chambered in .38 Super?  Let me mention it again.  I like the flat firing, and fast 9 mm bullet in a heavy chunk of steel that tames the recoil of the weapon.  Apparently, Bob Campbell likes the .38 Super as well, judging from an article he wrote over at the Shooter's Log entitled Does Anyone Still Use the .38 Super?

The answer is, of course, people do.  Many who engage in shooting sports use "race guns" chambered in .38 Super  because of the ballistic advantages over .45 Automatic.  The smaller bullet means they can achieve major power factors while getting faster follow up shots on target.

The .38 Super Auto also occupies a special place in Mexico.  It seems that Mexicans can have guns, as long as they are chambered in a non-military or police cartridge:
Some nations, notably Mexico, prohibit military calibers such as the 9mm and .45, but not the .38 Super. Colt was discontinuing the long-serving .38 ACP automatic and wished to introduce a mid bore to replace it.
On the other hand, finding ammunition can be catch as catch can.  Local ranges are often out of .38 Super ammunition.  That makes reloading an important skill for the .38 Super shooter.  Campbell notes the advantages of the .38 Super for defensive purposes as follows:
The 1911 is a good home for the .38 Super. It features straight-to-the-rear trigger compression, a low bore axis, a grip that fits most hands well and excellent speed into action.
There is no pistol faster to an accurate first shot than a 1911 handgun properly carried cocked and locked. This is an easier cartridge to master than the .45 and has two more rounds of magazine capacity.
The platform allows good control for those who practice. Long-range practical shooting is possible with the 1911/.38 Super format. An advantage of this caliber is penetration.
The smaller-diameter .38 Super in its hottest loads offer greater penetration against light cover than the .45 ACP or 9mm cartridges. Additionally, it’s a remarkably easy cartridge to handload with good results.
So, given all these advantages, it would seem to be a good defensive round, no? For carry purposes, I like using Winchester Silvertip cartridges, when I can find them. But I also find American Eagle 115 grain cartridges fire reliably.

For reloading, the range of bullets is interesting as well.  The original .38 Automatic (from which the Super is derived) fires a .356 inch diameter bullet weighing 130 grains.  The Super version was the same size and weight but contained a larger charge of powder, propelling the bullet at around 1300 feet per second.  Berry's makes a copper plated bullet that is 124 grains in weight, and 0.356 inch diameter. This combination allows a wide range of powders to be used.  Note that the 9mm Luger uses a .355 in diameter bullet, while the .38 Special uses a .357 inch diameter bullet.  You do not want to confuse these bullets.  While the smaller diameter bullet may not be as accurate, the larger diameter may go over pressure risking a kaboom.

So, to answer Campbell's original question, yes, there are a few of us still using a .38 Super for defensive carry.  While the "plastic fantastic" pistols have taken over the market, and the striker fired pistols have many advantages, some of us old timers still like "Old Slab Sides" but we find the .45 Auto to be a bit too much.  .38 Super fills a need like nothing else will do.

Thursday, January 23, 2020

The Reds Are Coming! The Reds Are Coming!

Kurt Schlichter today has a post at entitled Peaceful Insurgency Tips For Virginia Patriots that I think captures what Virginians need to do in the coming weeks and months, but also the rest of us in other States. Schlichter sees Richmond as a victory for the Patriots because there was no violence. Patriots took the high moral ground that day. And winning hearts and minds is not just important, it is ultimately everything.

Don't get me wrong here, I believe that guns will be important in the coming fight, and we will be required not just to have them and display them as in Richmond, but to know how to use them as well. But I believe for the most part, that guns will be symbolic of the Constitutional order and of our rights as people.
Let’s begin with a basic principle: You have no moral obligation to respect or obey unconstitutional actions by a government. None. And when a government acts outside its constitutional limits, you do not merely have the right but the sacred duty to reject and replace it.
What now is that you continue with the momentum from the rally and before. This is an insurgency – a peaceful one, despite the “de-escalate” crap your Jazz Singing’ chief executive is shoveling – and you need to keep up the pressure. This is about guns, which are the backstop of freedom but the liars and losers of the media want to pretend you don’t think so. They want to pretend you are looking for a chance to commit violence. They want to pretend you want to hurt people. That’s how they plan to delegitimize you.
Don’t fall for it.
First step: resolve that these garbage people, whether liberal pols, the media, Twitter blue checks, or Fredocon sissies who would have been all in with the Redcoats in 1776, can kiss your sweet Northam. When you don’t ignore them, mock them. They want to shame you into the shame of submission. They have zero moral authority. They are lying trash and worthy only of your contempt. Treat them accordingly.
Second step: turn your anger into votes. The gunfascists got into power because far too many of you thought, “Oh, we’ve had Democrats in power in Virginia before and it’s no big deal.” Okay, wrong. The Democrats today are not the Democrats of yesterday. These are CA/NY billionaire-funded activists whose goal is to turn you into serfs by taking your power, your money, and your dignity. You must register to vote then you must vote only for Republicans – and you need to make sure you don’t nominate any wuss Republicans during the primary. Next, you must reinvigorate your party. Why don’t you run for a seat on the local GOP committee? Organize! The mobilization for gun rights sanctuaries and the march on the Capitol proved that if you organize and act, you will win.
The second pooint Schlichter is making is important. Get involved in politics, as disgusting as it may be. But do not, under any circumstances, vote for a Democrat.  The Democrat party is no more.  Zel Miller sounded the deathknell of the Democrat party back in 2004. The group that has taken over the remains of the Democrat party are communists, socialists, fascists, and Islamists.

Now, I know what many of you are thinking. The Democrats may be the party of evil, as evidenced by the ease with which they lie, but the Republicans are the stupid party, the party of spineless, feckless people afraid of their own shadows. I know. It wasn't always so, though. The Republicans started out in a school house in Wisconsin with a goal to end slavery. They finally gained enough political power to elect the first Republican president, Abraham Lincoln.  They were fighters for the cause of abolition.  They kept the underground railroad running, risking life, fortune, and reputation on it because they believed God demanded it.  Republicans could be that party again.

Amil Amani has a piece over at the American Thinker entitled The Rage Of The Democrats. Amani's point in the article is what I have been saying as well, that the Democratic party is bad for America and the World. Of course, he says it nicer than I do.
What underlies the rage of the Democrat Party and of the leftist Democrat Establishment vis-à-vis President Donald Trump?
Over forty years ago, during my high school years in Iran, my father and I had a conversation. He was an avid Republican, even though he lived on the other side of the world. Right before I prepared to leave Iran for the U.S., he gave me some fatherly advice. He explained why the Democrat Party was bad for America, bad for Iran, and bad for the world. He advised me that if I ever became a US citizen, I should never vote for Democrats. After all these years, I now understand what he meant by those words of wisdom.
It is obvious that the Democrat Party is at war with America, and Democrats are not interested in stopping any time soon.
The radical left enjoys controlling people from cradle to grave. (Sounds like Muslims.) They want socialism. They want to be in charge for eternity. The leftist agenda recommends denial of personal responsibility, encourages self-pity and fosters government reliance, promotes sexual indulgence, rationalizes violence, excuses financial obligation, justifies theft, ignores rudeness, prescribes complaining and blaming, promotes sharia law, denigrates the sanctity of marriage and the family, legalizes all abortion, defies religious and social tradition, declares inequality unjust, and rebels against the duties of citizenship and much more.
For decades, the Democrat Party has shown by both words and deeds that they despise the U.S. Constitution while they bend over backward to embrace Islamists, illegal aliens, and anyone who hates America and feels entitled. The left is interested only in power and nothing else — even if it means sacrificing our safety and security.
I had abandoned being involved in politics for many years. My experiences as a precinct committeeman for the county Republicans turned me off of politics. You know the old saying about how sausage is made. Well, I can stomach sausage making pretty well compared to politics. But I have recognized the need to get involved, again. I have held my nose plenty of times to vote for the lesser of two evils. It is time to find some candidates who will be more like Trump, and then back them fully, as Trump supporters do. Trump will eventually leave office. Who will we put in his place to continue his work?

Oh, and Grass Roots North Carolina has an equivalent of the Virginia Citizen's Defense League Lobby Day.  I confess I have never attended.  I mean to make a different decision next time.  Because like it or not, the Reds are coming. Patriots need to organize and make your voices heard.

 *As an aside, our Democrat Governor will not have to make an emergency declaration.  Guns are already forbidden on the Capitol grounds and buildings.  They afraid of us, aren't they?

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

The Founding Fathers Entrusted We The People With The Republic

As an old fart, I remember well the 1960s.  It was a time of upheaval, and the so called "New Left" was on the march.  The struggle over the meaning of the First Amendment was at least as intense as the struggle over the Second.  A commonly heard argument from Leftists was that "I support your right to say things I do not support."  And conservatives agreed, thinking that the Left was arguing in good faith.  Silly conservatives!  All that changed as "New Leftists" began to take positions of authority and power in the various institutions of the culture.  This was the great "March Through The Institutions" of which you have no doubt heard.  Because so much news came to be biased in favor of the Left, Fox News Channel has had a good run with its marketing tag line of "fair and balanced."

Conservatives, of course, still believe in free speech.  We believe that if the facts are revealed, and both we and the Left are equally allowed to give our own interpretation of those facts, our side will prevail.  The Left evidently believes so too, for they routinely do not allow our side to even present the actual facts, let alone interpret them.  For instance, at yesterday's VCDL Lobby Day event in Richmond, Virginia, and NBC reported falsely claimed that the rally was really about white supremecy. In fact it was about the 2nd Amendment and there were exactly zero arrests for violence.  Sorry, media, but gun rights supporters are not itching for a fight.

David Weinberger has a think piece out today at The Federalist entitled Why the News Media Cannot and Should Not Be Unbiased. He argues that even deciding which facts to report and which to keep silent about involves bias. Interpreting those facts that are reported involves yet more bias. He is right, of course.

However, when conservatives rail against a biased press, they are not talking so much about the kind of bias that Weinberger mentions here, but about systemically preventing any conservative to speak at all. Conservative and religious ideas are barred from the public square not just be the traditional media, but by social media such as twitter and facebook.  Of what are they afraid?  When, for instance, Ann Coulter goes to a campus to speak, she must have security there to protect her, and she is often shouted down. If the Left believes their cause is correct, of what are the so afraid?  Whatever happened to the idea of colleges being places of free thought and debate?

In fact, rather than having a headline that grabs attention by blaring that "news media can not be unbiased," what it should say is that the news media should provide a more balanced diversity of ideas.  For that is the main point of the article.

Now, some will say that certain ideas are beyond the pale, and should be suppressed.  Examples include the skinheads and Neo-Nazi movements.  But I say the more speech the better.  Let them talk and be heard.  Any reasonable person will quickly see that the ideas espoused are ridiculous.

The Founding Fathers ultimately entrusted the nation to We The People.  I am sure it was not without some trepidation.  But the newspapers of the day were as biased as anything we see today on all sides of every issue.  Wise people read and discussed all sides of every issue.  The Left should allow us the same privilege today.

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Virginia hasn't descended into tyranny...yet

In a post over at Bearing Arms, Cam Edwards says that No, Virginia hasn't descended into tyranny...yet...but if Governor "Blackface" Northam had his way, it would already by a tyrannous hell hole. And electing Democrats to hold any office, even dog catcher, is always dangerous. I suspect that many of the Democrats who were elected in 2019 to seize the Capitol took Bloomberg's money, but had no intentions of doing his bidding. None the less, some of Bloomberg's anti-gun agenda will be accomplished.

No less than George Washington himself is said to have uttered the quote "Government is not reason; it is not eloquence; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master." But a number of the founders have expressed similar ideas: that government should be deliberately limited to give widest scope to individual achievements.

Since the founding, the Second Amendment has been the touch stone of the Bill of Rights. The other rights recognized by the Bill of Rights are the important ones, but the right to keep and bear arms secures those other rights. You will notice that Governor "Blackface" is trying to constrain people from peacefully assembling, and from making their grievances known to their representatives. The First amendment doesn't say that we have a right to assemble disarmed inside a fenced in kill zone, after all.  We do have the right to peacefully assemble, period.  We have the right to petition our government for redress of grievances, period.  We have the right to back up these rights with force if necessary.

None the less, Edwards is correct that so far tyranny has not taken hold in Virginia.  What he is saying is that everyone should remain calm, keep your eyes open and your head on a swivel.  The time for backing up our First Amendment rights with the Second Amendment has not come.  It may never come.  But the right to keep and bear arms can be likened to having a fire extinguisher.  You pray you never need it, and the great majority of fire extinguishers will never be used. But does the rarity of use mean the government should mandate that you give them up and rely on the fire department alone to protect you?  That is the argument being made by those who wish to disarm us.

Go read Cam Edwards piece at Bearing Arms to get the latest status of the Bills before the Virginia legislature.

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Is Governor Northam Setting Stage For Violence On Lobby Day?

January 20, 2020 marks, of course, Martin Luther King Day, but it is also the date of the annual Virginia Citizens' Defense League (VCDL) Lobby Day.  The purpose of Lobby Day is a day for volunteer members of VCDL to speak with their legislative representatives and Senators about gun issues.  VCDL, along with a number of Republicans have been responsible for getting concealed carry passed in Virginia, and expanding gun rights in general.  When I lived in Virginia, I was a member of VCDL.  It is a mainstream organization that ties members from all walks of life together by a common bond of carrying a concealed handgun for personal protection.

The Governor of Virginia, Gov. "Blackface" Northam has preemptively declared a gun free zone around the state Capitol, tagging VCDL members as white nationalists and skinheads, and blaming VCDL members for any violence that occurs on January 20.  The story can be found at the American Thinker in a post by James G. Robertson entitled Blame Game Set for VA. Gov. Northam's Gun Free Kill Zone
Capitol police expect to funnel as many as 10,000 people through magnetometers into the outdoor gun-free kill zone that will be contained by fencing around the Capitol grounds. Thus, any violent extremists motivated by mass murder will be able legally to carry their weapons onto 9th Street and have a free fire zone into the trapped and defenseless crowd.
Similarly, it will be legal to carry anywhere on the streets surrounding the kill zone. Trapping people in an enclosure won't make them safe, and the prospect of mixing bad and good actors in the streets is an object lesson in the futility of gun-free zones.
On Lobby Day, should people need to escape the gun-free kill zone, they will be funneled into exit choke points along the fence, where they will be vulnerable to further concentrated violence. This is the same type of plan used in Charlottesville to trap Unite the Right demonstrators behind metal barricades, and then to funnel them through exits targeted by the Antifa mob.
Antifa mob?  Who are these guys?  Lets take a look at the history of the so called Antifascists who are the new military wing of the left.  Doug Petrikat has a piece at the American Thinker entitled The Fascist Roots Behind Today's Justification Of Political Violence. Petrikat points out that Antifa is the same old group of communists who fought against the fascists in the 1920s and 1930s in fascist Italy and Germany.  The entire enterprise is Un-American, indeed, is an imported philosophy from Europe, from Marx and Engles.
But now someone I personally know and consider a rational, intelligent person was justifying political violence. It made me think that we have reached the point where apparently normal people believe violence is an acceptable way to resolve internal political differences.
This is a disturbing development. In a civilized society, freedom of speech and open discussion enable those with different views to learn from each other and consider their own positions from a more critical perspective. However, where threats, intimidation, ridicule, and political violence are the norm, open discussion is suppressed, and progress is hindered.
Antifa began a century ago in 1921 as a front group under the direction of the Soviet Union to incite a Communist revolution in Germany. In 1923 the Politburo of the Communist Party in Soviet Russia held a meeting to plan an armed insurrection to overthrow the struggling democracy in Germany’s Weimar Republic. Following the Politburo’s instructions, the German Communist Party formed its armed movement to silence rival political parties through violence and to overthrow the government. The party named its movement Antifaschistische Aktion.
The party chose the name Antifaschistische Aktion, now known as Antifa, because an Italian Marxist fell out with his nation’s Socialist Party, founded his own party, and took power in 1922. Although he still held leftist views, nationalized 75% of Italy’s economy, and expanded the state’s social safety net, he believed that a hierarchy should be part of society and ignored the dictates from both the Socialists in his former party and the Communists in Moscow. For this heresy, his new party was branded as a rogue movement.
If one were prone to conspiracy theories, one might think that Governor Northam, a Leftist, might well be coordinating, indirectly of course, with Antifa, to create the violence while arranging the stage to actually cause it. Not that I am a conspiracy theorists, but...

T, L, Davis lays out the theory in more detail in a post at the American Thinker entitled Is Governor Northam Trying To State a Second Civil War? Davis notes that normal political behavior is that in the face of overwhelming unpopularity of a given policy, politicians usually either modify their plans or dump them all together.  After all, how can you govern without the consent of the governed?  Yet the Democrats seem poised to ram extreme gun control down Virginia citizens' throats. 

If you are planning to be a part of Lobby Day, please read the embedded articles, and keep your head on a swivel.  Be ready to film anything that looks like it may become Antifa mob violence, or may be a false flag operation designed to make gun owners the bad guys.

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

What Does Our Society Value?

I get regular posts in the email from a group of columnists that call themselves the American Partisan. Today's post is by the author whose nom de plume is The Gray Man, and is entitled Escape The Ranks Of The Insane As Gray Man points out, there are fewer and fewer of those of us who see through the insanity that marks current "culture."
I was reading Drudge the other day and found an article that I will not link here, since the readers do not need to add another few points to their blood pressure. It is there is a person with severe delusions regarding their gender. I believe it was a woman pretending to be a man and expecting the rest of us to join them in there delusion, or else be labeled with some variation of bigotry. The subject of the article was dismayed that despite their decision to masquerade as a man, she was still having a monthly menstruation and was forced to buy a $12 pink box of tampons that had a woman (by all evidence, an actual one) on the front of it. In the article the mentally ill woman complained about the price, complained about the look of the box itself, complained about the “dysphoria” her monthly event caused her, and there was even a tone of surprise that I sensed. Surprise at the fact that the menstruation didn’t cease the moment this individual decided that she was now a man. NBC News of course thought this was newsworthy and ran it like a serious piece. That’s our media, and they wonder, they legitimately wonder, why at least 40% of the US population don’t take them seriously anymore.
Of course I can agree that seemingly every day there is something in the news that seems crazy, and that makes me wonder about how anyone can believe this stuff. After all, if they test what they are being told by comparing it to reality, it will soon become apparent that what they are being told is not true. But it was specifically what The Gray Man had to say about art that was shocking, and I am not easily shocked. I have long characterized much of modern art as a hoax being played on a gullible public. Now I see that it my be a deliberate plot to undermine Western art and culture:
The book “The Naked Communist” had 45 goals to destroy the US, in which “US” could really be seen as non-communist Western Civilization. Number 23 said “Our goal is to promote ugliness, repulsive, meaningless art.” I was at the University of Florida earlier this year and saw a piece of “art” in an open area near some museums. The piece was simply three, long metal beams. Two of them formed an “x” and the other was propping them upright. That was it. That is art in our modern civilization. Recently I read that an art exhibit had a piece that sold for quite a lot of money. It was a banana duct taped to the wall. There have been several pieces of art made entirely, or mostly, from shit. Excuse my language here, but is that what our society, our civilization here in the West, values and holds dear? Shit?
One often hears the saying that "art is in the eye of the beholder." But people who say these things are promoting a lazy and intellectually dishonest concept of art. Art is, in fact, capable of definition, and can indeed have standards. In fact, it must have standards in order to have meaning. Art requires knowledge, discipline, talent and vision. The idea that a banana duct taped to a wall is art is frankly disgusting. The fact that most of the best movies today are remakes speaks volumes about the state of the movie industry. I often find 1940's music better that what is being written today. As for poetry, nobody reads it any more. One can hardly blame people for finding it obscure and indecipherable. Where is today's Shakespeare, or Tennyson.

Art is an inseparable part of any civilization. And great civilizations produce great art. I am not sure whether it's a matter of the chicken or the egg, but in any case, the state of our art suggests our society is heading into the abyss.

Sunday, January 12, 2020

The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, But in ourselves. - Shakespeare, Julius Caesar

Patricia McCarthy, over at the American Thinker is the latest to express a belief that the DOJ is stringing Trump supporters along in hopes of running out the clock. Her post today entitled The Rule of Law, Abuse of Power, and Justice Denied makes clear:
Yes, the gears of justice grind slowly, but this is ridiculous. More and more Americans, especially those of us who support President Trump, are losing hope that anyone will be held responsible for the most horrific political scandal in U.S. history. It seems to have become the rule that those who attain bureaucratic power get to keep it no matter how appalling the nature of their crimes. The virulent racists, from the cops to the DAs, who sentenced numerous innocent men to death row in the South all kept their jobs and most likely continued their evil ways just as our high-profile traitors at the CIA, FBI and DOJ have kept theirs. The sheriff who knowingly charged McMillan with murder in 1987 was re-elected six times after his wrongdoing was revealed; rather like Biden's re-election after numerous ethical lapses, plagiarism the least of them. Peter Schweizer's new book is likely to expose much more serious crimes of the Biden family.
No one who is an Orthodox Christian and conservative can be anything other than a pessimist. For Orthodox Christianity contains the doctrine of Original Sin, which says we have, all of us, fallen short of the Glory of God, and are helpless to achieve Heaven on our own. What that means in practical terms is exactly what Ms. McCarthy is talking about in this post. I too fear that Barr and Durham are log rolling to run out the clock on the Trump administration. There will be no indictments of these traitors, there will be no jail time.  They will go on to lucrative careers and be supported by the Democrats.

It is rather like an old joke in the bureaucracy regarding the six phases of a big project:  Enthusiasm, Disillusionment, Panic, Hunt for the "guilty", Punishment of the innocent, and Promotion of the actual guilty parties. In the above joke, it is understood that the "hunt for the guilty" will be plausibly pinning the responsibility for disaster on someone other than the actual guilty parties.

This also highlights another thing that I have learned along the way, namely if you are a Democrat, your chances of getting away with whatever are greatly enhanced.  Oh, you can not get away with literally anything, but you can get away with a lot as long as other Democrats feel you can...uh...make a difference...ahem.  Republicans had better in general adhere to the straight and narrow path.

Meanwhile, at The Federalist Margot Cleveland has an article discussing the fact that The FISA Court Is Complicit in the FBI Abuses It's Raising Cain Over. Cleveland is The Federalist court reporter.
Today is the deadline Collyer set for the government to “inform the Court in a sworn written submission of what it has done, and plans to do, to ensure that the statement of facts in each FBI application accurately and completely reflects information possessed by the FBI that is material to any issue presented by the application.”
And FBI Director Christopher Wray has duly submitted a twelve part plan to add yet more bureaucratic hoops to jump through, in the belief that these will indeed force the FBI to do the right things. But the problem was not that the FBI did not have enough steps in the process to ensure that they were not violating a person's rights, and that they did indeed have probable cause to obtain a warrant. No, the problem was that FBI agents deliberately chose to ignore these process steps, and to lie to the FISA Court. And according to Cleveland, it may have been with the Court's connivance.

The problem is a lack of integrity on the part of individual agents and lawyers within the DOJ, not on a lack of process.  Like the Constitution itself, a process is only as good as the integrity of the individuals following the process.  It they choose to betray the intended goal of the process, all bets are off.

As Shakespeare noted in the play Julius Caesar through his character Cassius, "The fault dear Brutus is not in our stars, but in ourselves."

Saturday, January 11, 2020

Joaquin Phoenix Offers Bad Diet Advice

If, gentle readers, you read my post from Tuesday, January 7, 2020 about the Hollywood elite forgoing meat at the Golden Globe awards, you know that meat is not the environmental problem it is made out to be.  Rather, the problem is how meat is produced in the huge feed lots feeding grain and soy beans to cattle that have evolved to eat grass.  Moreover, while most of us do not need to eat as much meat as we do, we all need some.

Over at today, Julio Rosas has a post that says it all. The post, here has Joaquin Phoenix apologizing for flying to speak at Jane Fonda's "Friday Fire Drill" on the Capitol steps, but then encouraging everyone to give up meat.
"Something that I think isn't oftentimes talked about in the environmental movement or in the conversation about climate is that the meat and dairy is the third leading cause of climate change," Phoenix said. "I think sometimes we wonder what can we do in this fight against climate and there is something you can do today right now and tomorrow by making a choice what you consume."
"I struggle so much with what I can do [to combat climate change] at times. There are things that I can't avoid — I flew a plane out here today, or last night rather. But one thing that I can do is change my eating habits and so I just want to urge all of you to join me in that," he continued.
Let's see here, what is it that Ricky Gervais said during his monologue at the Golden Globes?
So if you do win an award tonight, don't use it as a platform to make a political speech. You're in no position to lecture the public about anything. You know nothing about the real world. Most of you spent less time in school than Greta Thunberg.
So if you win, come up, accept your little award, thank your agent, and your God and fuck off, OK? It's already three hours long. Right, let's do the first award.
Hanoi Jane has lived on her fathers name all her life. Her father was a talented actor. She and her brother, not so much. So, I look at her "Friday Fire Drills" as a way to stay in the public eye. But just as one shouldn't follow the morals of celebrities, so one shouldn't accept diet advise from them either.

Democrats Pass First Gun Ban of 2020

In case you missed it, and you were planning to attend the Virginia Citizens' Defense League Lobby Day on January 20, 2020, you might want to leave your gun at home.  John Lott has the story at entitled Virginia Lawmakers Have Voted To Ban Guns From State Capitol Building. One of the things I always liked about Virginia was that you could carry your gun into the Capitol Building, unlike here in North Carolina. It indicated to me certain trust in the citizenry, and made me trust the legislators a bit more. Here, the fact that they do not trust me causes me to think that maybe I should not trust them.  Lott's main point though, is that the legislators are creating yet another "gun free criminal empowerment zone":
The problem with gun-free zones, which ban law-abiding civilians from carrying, is that they don’t exactly scare off criminals. In fact, they have just the opposite effect. Disarming everyone, including legislators or staffers, on their way to and from the buildings leaves them easy targets to criminals and terrorists. The murderers have an incentive to disobey the law precisely because the law-abiding obey it.
Gun-free zones are magnets for murderers. Even most ardent gun control advocates would never put “Gun-Free Zone” signs on their homes. Let’s not ignore the evidence and let the fear that something might go wrong put lives in danger.
Meanwhile, over at the American Thinker M. Catherine Evans has more details on the ban at Within 48 hours of taking over the Virginia legislature, Democrats pass first gun ban of 2020. Typical of the way Democrats operate these days, the vote took place out of the public spotlight, in a party line vote, during which they cowardly blamed the Capitol Police:
Democratic House Majority Leader Charneile Herring claimed the sudden policy decision by the Joint Rules Committee, just a handful of people, was at the request of the Capitol Police. "I think there are times when we sort of have to trust what our law enforcement officers are telling us," she said. When asked by reporters, after the rushed and less than transparent committee meeting, Capitol Police Col. Anthony Pike said he had made no recommendations on whether guns should be banned, only how to implement the ban. GOP Del. Kirk Cox called Herring's attempt to put the onus on the Capitol Police "a deliberate misrepresentation, there's just no way around that, " he said.
Please go read both pieces for full details. The purpose of Lobby Day has always been to actually speak with Delegates and Senators about gun issues. It seems fairly clear, though, that these people are not interested in discussing these issues, indeed their minds are already made up. Still, one has to try or be accused of not taking advantage of the system. I would however leave you with a quote from Thomas Jefferson:
"... I advise the gun. While this gives a moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprize, and independance to the mind. Games played with the ball and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks."
Perhaps Democrats in Virginia should take a lesson from one of the founders of their party, and a fellow Virginian.

Friday, January 10, 2020

Climate Researchers Manipulate Data

Perhaps you are wondering how, in the face of all the "evidence"  that the Earth is warming and that man is destroying the environment.  Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez tells us we have only 12 years left to live!  Greta Thunberg wonders how dare we?  Except, of course, that the planet has be only 12 years until doom since Al Gore produced his movie An Inconvenient Truth. Doing the high powered mathematics required reveals that we should already be dead. Huh...

John Eidson pulls the curtain back on the so called "evidence" to reveal that it is manipulated to give the results the climate alarmists want in a piece entitled Eye - popping video exposes brazen junk science by Federal climate assessment program. Dear readers should especially look at the embedded video. What it shows is that the U. S. Global Climate Change Research Program selectively pick the starting dates for their various "proofs of warming to achieve the desired results. As you will learn, though, when the hidden data is added to the charts, it shows that the claim of warming is pure bunk.

As with the idea that veganism somehow is more environmentally sound and reduces global warming, the facts just do not add up.  But please, go check it out for yourselves.

Thursday, January 9, 2020

More Jews Arming Themselves

Over at Bearing Arms, Tom Knighton has a post entitled Jews Arming Themselves After Anti-Semitic Attacks. Being myself a Christian, I do not know why so many Jews seem to thing the Torah demands pacifism. The Torah, of course, is the first five books of the Bible, and include the 10 Commandments, as well as the complete Law of God. No where does it suggest that one must accept being beat up or killed unjustly. The recent attacks on the Jews are criminal events and they had every right to defend themselves with deadly force if necessary.  Frankly I am glad to see that many more Jews are waking up to the need to actively do what they can to defend both themselves and their loved ones.

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Global Warming Nonsense From Hollywood Elites

I haven't taken the goofball warmening nonsense to task in a while, so it's time.

First up is an blog post from by Matt Vespa entitled The Funny Thing About ABC News' Absurd Australia Wildfire Map That Was Dragged For Its Stunning Inaccuracy. The map shows the continent of Australia superimposed over the United States, and thus stretch out the wild fires to look like they were taking place across and are similar to the U.S. landmass. However, in the actual story from ABC news we hear that the actual wildfires occupy an area of about Maryland.

Now, a set of wildfires the size of Maryland is tragic, and a major undertaking to get under control. Many people have lost their homes, and many animals have lost their habitats.  But the agenda was actually to make the point that these wildfires are contributing to global warming, or something.  That claim is inaccurate.

Now, wildfires do release carbon into the atmosphere, so that much is accurate.  However, wildfires are an annual event in semiarid regions like California and Australia.  The size of Australia's wildfires is especially large this year, but they happen every year there, just as the do in California. If wildfires are natural events, that happen annually, then we can not think of them in terms of "global warming" because these wildfires are typically random events that contribute to the background carbon dioxide level in the atmosphere.  Remember that carbon dioxide is an essential gas.  Plants breath in carbon dioxide and exhale oxygen.  We, of course, breath in oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide.

At the recent Golden Globe Awards celebration, the elite entertainers decided to go vegan to signal their virtue by not eating meat.  This was supposed to reduce global warming, although they leave out some steps in the logic, so what one has to do with the other is unclear.  In fact, the raising of monoculture grains and soy beans actually destroys the soil, takes carbon out of sequestration, and reduces biodiversity, not just of plants but also soil bacteria and worms.  In addition, grains and soybean culture use huge amounts of petrochemical fertilizers.

Aside from the goofball warmening nonsense, there are some real things we as a society can do to improve the environment.  The desertification of the world in the semiarid regions of the world has been going on for many thousands of years.  Scientists have thought that the problem was vast numbers of ruminants polluting the land and overgrazing.  They have cut the numbers of ruminants, but desertification accelerated.  As it turns out, large herds of ruminant animals are critical to the  health of grassland.  More importantly for the global warming vegans, they are doing it all wrong, and destroying their health in the process.

The website Grass Fed Beef and Global Warming shows that by managing the way that large numbers of ruminant animals are grazed on small plots, then move to another small plot, and another, farmers can create sustainable environments that store carbon and create healthy biodiversity. The great plains was once a vast grass land, and buffalo (now called bison) roamed from place to place seeking fresh grass. In the process they built up the carbon content of the soil, held the rainfall such that it built up the aquifer, and was a sustainable environment for thousands of years.

The problem with beef and their farting, is that in feed lots, the cattle are held in close quarters, fed grain and soybeans, to produce about 1 pound of beef for every 18 pounds of feed. But this feed is not natural to beef, and it gives them indigestion. Additionally, being in close quarters, they must be fed  medication and the equivalent of cow antacids.  It is a miserable experience for the cows.

The link to grass fed beef and global warming is rather long, but interesting.  Especially, watch the TED talk, as I suspect that here is the solution to desertification.  In any case, though, being vegan because of so called global warming is counterproductive.  Eating grains and soybeans is not good for people, or for ruminant animals.  It certainly is not good for the environment.  For best health, our diet should consist of healthy fats and oils such as olive oil, coconut oil, the fats of grass fed beef and pork, free range egg yolks; and vegetables like broccoli, salad greens, as well as roots and tubers like turnips and sweet potatoes.  The meat that most people need for good nutrition is only 4 ounces or so a day.  There is no reason to regularly eat 1 pound porterhouse steaks.  Everyone needs some protein, but too much is not healthy.  The fats should, ideally, be around 70% of calorie intake.  I can tell you from personal experience that this sort of diet improves your blood work completely reversing the things doctors worry about.  It also decreases inflammation thus getting rid of things like osteoarthritis.

The linked article makes the point that raising cattle on permanent pasture where the cattle are regularly moved from place to place to allow the pasture to regrow actually stores carbon in the soil and holds the rain that falls and puts it into the aquifer.  Makes sense to me.  Moreover, much of the land that we farm is not well suited to raising crops, and the farmers themselves would be better served by grazing these lands in small plots, frequently moving the herd to new plots throughout the year.

Please go read especially the second link, and look at the embedded videos.  To understand the dietary imperatives of the fat based, and vegetable heavy diet with small amounts of meat, to read the book by Dr. Steven Gundry The Plant Paradox.

Monday, January 6, 2020

Bloomberg Wants To Take Away Your Guns

Former Mayor of New York and media mogul Michael Bloomberg has been pouring millions of his own funds into a bid for the Presidency on the Democrat ticket.  When he ran for Mayor, it was as a Republican.  Now he has switch parties again, so I think the only "principle" he upholds is that Michael Bloomberg should be King.

Bloomberg is also the funder of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense and Everytown For Gun Safety. As such, he has made taking away America's guns the centerpiece of his candidacy. At the New American, Joe Wolverton II, J.D. has written a piece entitled Candidate Bloomberg Says He Wants To Take Away Americans' Guns:
In response to a question about Jack Wilson, the man in the congregation of the West Freeway Church of Christ in White Settlement, Texas, who shot and killed an armed assailant who threatened the lives of over 200 congregants, Bloomberg said: “It’s the job of law enforcement to have guns and decide when to shoot. We just do not want the average citizen carrying a gun in a crowded place.”
I have seen no one address this issue yet, so I will take the opportunity to do so. It is not the job of law enforcement to have guns and decide when to shoot. The Supreme Court, no less, has reiterated that it is not the job of law enforcement to protect you, or me, individually. In a piece at the Washington mean Post here, the post makes the point that:
In 2005, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that police did not have a constitutional duty to protect a person from harm. That ruling overturned a federal appeals court in Colorado that allowed a lawsuit to stand against a town when its police refused to protect a woman from her husband. He had violated a restraining order and kidnapped their children, whom he killed, the New York Times reported.
Despite what Bloomberg and many other gun grabbers say, you and I are still responsible for our own defense against criminals and, well, against politicians. That some places, like New York City deny people the opportunity to use the most effect means to defend themselves means that the governments of such places are literally committing crimes against their people.

The fact that Bloomberg goes about with armed security, while denying to people who can not afford such armed security the chance to defend themselves makes him a hypocrite and a control freak.  Just the sort we want for a president.

Thursday, January 2, 2020

"Blackface" Northam's Name Will Live In Infamy

Kurt Schlichter has some tough love for the rascals who voted for Democrats in state and local elections this last year.  He tells it like it is in a piece at entitled Newly-Elected Democrats Let Their Mask Slip, Revealing The Fascists Beneath:
Since the 2018 elections, we have seen a lot of stupid people electing Democrats in state and local elections, and since the garbage Democrats have the garbage Midas touch – everything they come in contact with turns to a Scat Francisco sidewalk – these dumb voters are now suffering the consequences of their misguided trust in these aspiring authoritarians. Democrats win when rich donors pump money into races behind candidates who pretend not to be the gimps of the hard-left cabal that actually runs the party. And the radicals who got elected pretending to be not-insane are getting into office and doing all the insane stuff we warned the voters they would do.
There are no “moderate” Democrats. All Democrats are dangerous to your life, prosperity and freedom. They prefer churchgoers die rather than be able to defend themselves. They want newly-prosperous frackers to learn to code. They want you jailed for denying the climate cult or the fact that there are men and there are women and there is nothing else.
What he has to say about Virginia's new Democratic regime is excellent as well:
In Virginia, the state is about to declare war on normal people for the crime of exercising their Second Amendment rights. Remember, this is the state where the Democrat governor (the old one, not the one who put on blackface) restored the voting rights of thousands of convicted criminals. Now Governor Jolson wants to make hundreds of thousands of Virginians, none of whom were committing a crime – and who, in most other states would not be committing a crime – into felons.
Tell me again how Democrats don’t hate you.
Now, most people did not vote to start a war on Virginia’s own citizens. And war it is – a Democrat suggested unleashing the National Guard on citizens who refuse to submit to serfdom. But the people will not comply – almost a hundred counties and cities have declared themselves Second Amendment sanctuaries. But the radical Democrats will not stop. They will push this to the wall. Honest citizens will get arrested. People may get killed. But that’s OK with the Democrats. They have to crush this outpouring of dissent. And they don’t care about the cost.
Schlichter is not wrong in his assessment of Governor "Blackface" Northam. To get his Democrat majority in the House and Senate, he made a deal with Bloomberg, he who funds Every Town for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action, and he means to carry it out. Today the Virginia Citizens Defense League put out a call to action for people to attend state budget hearings at their nearest locations. The hearings are to put in place funds designed to enforce planned future gun confiscation laws. Northam has clearly looked to New York and Connecticut and has seen that citizens for the most part did not comply. After all, such a law is unconstitutional, therefore null and void. One should not comply with it. But Northam figures to have none of that.

If Virginia lives up to its motto, Sic Semper Tyrannis, Thus Always To Tyrants, "Blackface" Northam's name will live in infamy. He will become a cautionary tale.  Let us pray that he does.

As always, please read the linked articles.  If you are in Virginia, please take action today.  The life you save may be your own.

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

The Lying Left

Happy New Year to all my readers!  May you all have a happy and prosperous New Year.  May you all have fair winds and following seas in the New Year.

I am amazed sometimes when looking at Google Analytics data, at how far flung readers are.  There are usually readers in Russia, the UK, Canada, and the occasional readers from France, Belgium, and even China.  This proves to me that the yearning for the freedoms we have in the United States, if not universal, is at least wide spread.

Today, I want to highlight a piece by Chrissy Clark at The Federalist entitled Gun Control Activist Promotes False Data To Uphold Anti - Gun Propaganda. Clark is talking about Shannon Watts of the Bloomberg funded group Moms Demand Action. Watts claims that " 3,500+ Texans are killed by guns every year: a life lost every 3 hours." As Clark points out, there are many problems with that statement. The first, not mentioned by Clark, is that guns don't kill people, they are rather tools used by people to sometimes kill others. But Clark also points to statistics by the CDC, a Federal agency, that support the notion that Texas ranks 27th in terms of homicide using a gun.  That puts Texas right in the middle of the 50 states.

Clark also writes:
This narrative and messaging is completely on brand with Democrats and the mainstream media. They ignore the big picture and put a laser focus on the issues they wish to highlight, no matter how out of context these issues may be.
So, to put “firearm-related injuries” into context, let’s compare Watts’s alleged mass killings statistic to the amount of unborn babies murdered in the womb in Texas in 2017.
According to Abort73, the Guttmacher Institute, and the CDC, in 2017 there were 53,277 abortions performed in the state of Texas. If Watts’s data was not aggregated and 3,513 Texans were actually killed by gunmen alone in 2017, that would still be nearly 50,000 less deaths by guns than abortion.
This perfectly encapsulates how Democrats and the mainstream media work overtime to ignore the actual causes of deaths and point their focus on an issue they want to discuss, such as gun control. The truth is, Watts’s data is only being used to promote an agenda, not the truth about how people are dying in the United States.
The last paragraph perfectly encapsulates the issue of the Democrats. They want power. Just look at Elizabeth Warren and the details of the number of ways she intends, if elected, to intrude on the lives of everyday Americans. She is I suspect, quite insane, but do you think she could impose these things if the citizenry were properly armed? Our Founders would already be shooting, and would be using fully automatic M16s, not puny AR-15s.

I do not doubt that Shannon Watts is a tool, used by politicians as a beard while they whittle away our Second Amendment rights. But make no mistake that it is a deliberate attempt to ensure their own safety when they finally are able to grab power and hold it.  Democrats, (and some Republicans too) have no love for our Republic, our Constitution, and frankly, they do not care about you either.