Archive for the ‘Media’ Category

The Challenge We Face With Ignorance About Guns

Thursday, August 8th, 2019

Friends?

I was watching Fox and Friends on Thursday morning. Pete Hegseth was substituting for Steve Doocey, alongside regulars Ainsley Earhardt and Brian Kilmeade, and in their last hour, about nine minutes in, Pete mentioned how the discussion always turns to guns. Ainsley asked Pete what he uses a “gun like that for,” implying that an AR-15 is something odd or weird.  Pete made an explanation about his right to defend himself and so on, but he seemed unprepared for the question, and I think Ainsley was trying to ambush him a little.  Watch this video, beginning at 9:20:

Here’s the problem: Ainsley Earhardt doesn’t apparently know the first thing about firearms, and Pete Hegseth doesn’t know how to defend his position very well.

Both aspects of this small clip are discouraging to me, because I am terribly frustrated that Ms. Earhardt hasn’t taken the time to inform herself, and Mr. Hegseth, a veteran, hasn’t made himself more able to defend his position and be prepared to answer the kind of question Earhardt asked. It shouldn’t be difficult to shine a little light in this darkness.

I’d love to help them both.  First, Ms. Earhardt should be open to a little weapons education.  I’m sure with his friends and connections, Mr. Hegseth can find somebody to facilitate a little range-time and take the Fox and Friends show on the road, maybe to Ms. Earhardt’s home state of South Carolina. In that state, it should be easy to find people who’d be willing to demonstrate the difference between a select-fire AR or AK type rifle and the more run-of-the-mill auto-loading (or semi-automatic) firearms so that she could be informed.  After all, this is not difficult.  Let Ms. Earhardt fire the actual military versions, on automatic(with coaching) and then fire the semi-automatic cousins. Show that externally, the two weapons can look exactly alike, minus the selector for automatic.

Now, with respect to Mr. Hegseth, it’s a somewhat easier cure. Hegseth seems to be a reasonably intelligent guy, but based on this segment, I don’t think he’s spent much time thinking about how to defend his position in an highly politicized environment.  He should have asked Ms. Earhardt, first: “Do you know the difference between an actual so-called “assault rifle” which is the actual weapon of war, and a civilian modern sporting rifle, which however it looks, is not an “assault weapon?”

Whatever Ms. Earhardt may or may not know, it doesn’t seem she’s well-versed in firearms.  At that point, she would probably be reduced to: “No, I don’t know the difference.”  This is where education can occur.  Let me help. The two popular types, AK and AR, have several things in common.  In the main, they are gas-operated rifles that us the spent gas of one round to automatically load the next round. Where the difference between the military version and the civilian version comes in is the fact that the military versions have the ability to continue firing by simply holding the trigger. In this mode, the cyclic rate of these rifles can be extraordinary, in the case of the AR platform, obtaining a rate of 800 rounds per minute. The AKs, due to their heavier reciprocating assembly(bolt, carrier, piston, etc) are somewhat slower, attaining roughly 600 rounds per minute, but their bullets are roughly twice as heavy, carrying more energy even though they move at roughly 2/3s to 3/4s the muzzle velocity of the .223/5.56mm round used by the AR platform.

Hegseth should be well-versed in the technical differences between automatic and semiautomatic weapons. That’s not his problem.  His problem is his inability to express the need he might have of such a rifle, but more importantly the right he has to own one.  My readers are well aware of the fact that I believe machine guns ARE covered(and protected) by the Second Amendment.  Let assume, however, that we intended only to defend the right to own a semi-automatic version that is a machine-gun look-alike.  Let’s start with our right. Leftists and other anti-gun folk claim that when the 2nd Amendment was adopted, the standard service arm of the day was a musket. This is true, however, both semi-automatic and automatic arms had been invented, but were seen as too expensive for Congress to obtain in numbers sufficient to outfit their army.  However, it is important to understand that the musket was the standard of that day.  So was the feather quill pen and ink well, along with the manually set printing press.  The notion was that armed citizens ought to have and maintain the ability to resist an overbearing government, which would imply directly that the founders thought citizens ought to be at parity with the Army, at least in terms of firearms.  At the very least then, we can see that the founders’ intended object of the the 2nd Amendment was to guarantee the right to an armed resistance in case of blossoming tyranny.

Part of the problem is that Earhardt asked the question: What do you use them(“assault weapons”) for?  The great thing about the modern AR type rifle is that it works great for many things. They’re excellent all-around ranch guns, they’re excellent for self-defense in situations where the defender is outnumbered, and they are useful in hunting. (Some state prohibit some calibers for hunting, but it may be game-dependent and so on.) Of course, you can built an AR-type rifle in many calibers, and also an AK-type. At times, I’ve seen AR-15 platform rifles in at least a dozen calibers, AR-10s in several more, and AKs in at least a half-dozen, including 12 and 20 gauge shotguns.

Hegseth, caught a little flat-footed, managed to say “for personal protection,” but he should have had a laundry list: “To defend my home, to hunt, to do target practice, I compete with others, and I keep up my skills in case I’m ever called upon to return to active duty to defend my country,” or some variant of that. Instead, he came across as somebody who walked into a battle he didn’t know he was going to be called upon to fight.  I do wonder if Earhardt didn’t ambush him with that question.  She may be sincere, but I think the question was part of satisfying an agenda.  Of course, that’s fine, but Hegseth should have been ready.

Now, if Hegseth was clever, he’d make a pitch to do a remote from some place in South Carolina, perhaps he could contact the good folks at Palmetto State Armory, and maybe for the publicity, they’d be willing to host a little shoot and bring Ms. Ainsley down there to her home state and do some shooting.  I think it would be awesome. They sell both AK and AR platform rifles, and they have a great reputation.  They may even be able to get somebody who owns properly-licensed automatics to do a little demonstration.  The point is, it shouldn’t be hard for FoxNews to provide actual education to their audience, if they wanted to do so.

Let people see the differences. If pictures are worth a thousand words, then video is worth a million.  I think this is the value of having people in the gun-owning community reach out to the woefully uneducated to fill in the vacuum. People have a tendency to fill in the unknown with the bogey-man. They don’t fill in the unknown with rainbows and unicorns.  If you can alleviate the vacuum by replacing it with actual knowledge, questions like Earhardt’s will be answered and the bogey-man will be vanquished.  At the same time, somebody like Hegseth must do much more to be prepared for those kinds of questions. He should have crushed it, but he came across looking a little evasive and uncomfortable in his answer.  That’s definitely NOT what the gun community needs.

It could be that I’m picking at nits, but I think people who are going to discuss gun ownership before audiences of a million or more ought to have their acts together.  I like Hegseth, as he seems committed to assisting veterans’ organizations, and he certainly seems to have his heart in the right place. It’s not that his answer was “bad,” so much as it seemed incomplete and unprepared. Earhardt, earning the money she does working at FoxNews, ought to be able to alleviate her ignorance if she was sincere. Given her home state, it should be easy for her to discover the answers.  I think it’s fair to suggest that before one throws around terms like “assault weapons,” one ought to know what that terms is being used to describe.

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Preparedness: Defense of Home and Country (Product Review)

Sunday, July 14th, 2019

Accuracy Begins Here

I make no bones about the fact that I believe in the full exercise of the Second Amendment, and while I realize there are those who will consider my views “extreme,” or some such thing, it’s in largest measure because they desire the approval of a cooing media. They’ve been conditioned to seek the approval of the popular culture and media, hoping to be labeled as “reasonable.”  I’ve never looked for validation among statists.  More, while they try to pretend that AR-15s have no use in self/home defense, the evidence strongly suggests otherwise, and more evidence came in on Wednesday. This being the case, I thought I’d take this opportunity to talk about one of the things I’ve always enjoyed, from the pellet rifles of youth, to when I was a young man in the Army, or in all the years since: Marksmanship.  The US Army taught me to be a fairly good shot, and perhaps owing to the eagle-eyed vision of my youth, (which seems to persist at distances, despite the arms-length affects of presbyopia in middle age,) I’ve always enjoyed being able to get the most out of any given rifle type.  A couple of years ago, I decided to build a custom AR-15.  I won’t bother you with the entire parts-list, but what I do wish to talk about is what I consider the heart of any such rifle: The barrel.  Bearing in mind that my experience with this type of firearm is extensive, having first handled an M16 at a tender seventeen years of age, I believe my opinion is informed by sufficient experience to offer some value to readers.  In this instance, I want to talk about barrels in general, but in particular, I wish to discuss a particular brand of barrel that has proven to me to be superior to others. The offerings of Wilson Combat seem to be as good a barrel as can be had for the money, and then some.  As I recently noted, speaking to another self-defense enthusiast on the subject, I’ve spent more for a barrel but I’ve never gotten more out of one.

The particulars of the barrel I selected were these:

  • 18″ Length
  • Chambered in .223 Wylde
  • Rifle Length Gas System
  • Bull barrel profile
  • .920″ diameter at gas seat(this has been superseded subsequently with a .875″ diameter gas seat.)
  • 5/8″-24 threaded muzzle(this has been superseded subsequently with 1/2″-28 threading.)
  • 1:8 RH twist
  • 416R Stainless Steel
  • Straight Flutes
  • Weight 42 ounces(Slightly lower in latest version)
  • M4 Style feed ramps

It’s a heavier profile, but because at my age, I’m not going to be running, jumping and dodging much. If I must, the extra weight won’t be nearly the problem my knees will be. On the other hand, I always consider weight a negative because almost no fight is from a purely fixed position.  I selected the .223 Wylde chambering because it is a good compromise between 5.56 and .223.  It can fire both cartridges safely, approaching the maximum potential of both.  The 18″ length was chosen because it is easier to wield if one must move in somewhat confined spaces, like an interior hallway, or through doorways.  I prefer the full(rifle) length gas system because it’s going to provide the best pressure and therefore muzzle velocity at the selected barrel length.  1:8RH twist seems to stabilize the 62gr rounds I prefer in most instances very well.  The shallow fluting lightens the load a bit from what it might otherwise be, and given the larger surface area, should augment cooling. The heavy profile should make for as rigid a barrel as you’re going to reasonably place in this particular performance envelope.  416R stainless is extremely resistant to corrosion.

Of course, when we talk about barrels, it’s hard to ignore the parts to which barrels attach, or which attach to or surround them.  In this case, a very lightweight, slim, free-float rail of 13″ length was used.  The upper receiver is standard DPMS forged 7075(as is the lower.)  The muzzle brake is a custom unit manufactured to my specifications by Larry Sperlich, of Pasco, WA. His custom brakes are exceedingly effective, and since he generally manufactures them from 303 stainless, like the barrel, they resist corrosion very well. (Larry will work with you to create the brake you desire. He does phenomenal work, so you can consider this an unqualified recommendation of his brakes. You can contact him via Ebay as seller Drhard1972.)  You’ll enjoy his work. These brakes are made from solid stainless round stock, so they can be on the heavy side, but then again, you’re quickly repaid for the extra ounces with recoil reduction and excellent muzzle control augmentation. Again, it’s a little extra weight that I’m happy to bear given the return.

Where the rubber meets the road when considering any barrel comes down to its inherent effects on the rifle’s accuracy.  This is best measured from a bench rest, and after zeroing the sights at a standard 25m(83 feet) with a standard type US Army zero target, it was interesting to note that the three-round group appeared as a single hole on the paper.  After relocating to a 100 yard lane, shooting a variety of ammo just to get a feel for accuracy, I shot the following brands/type/weights:

  • PMC Bronze .223 55gr FMJ
  • Silver Bear .223 62gr HP
  • Silver Bear .223 55gr FMJ
  • Federal Lake City 5.56 55gr FMJ (XM193BK)
  • TulAmmo .223 75gr HP
  • Wolf .223 62gr FMJ

I knew my first shots would leave a lot of copper on the sharp edges of the new lands in my spiffy new barrel, but I wanted to be “gentle” on it.  All of the zeroing was carried out with the PMC Bronze because it’s a good, average round, serving as a decent baseline for comparison.  In short, it’s neither the best nor the worst, but it does have a brass case, and their manufacturing process tends to lend itself to a basic level of consistency.  As expected, this ammunition provided for MOA groupings at 100 yards.  Occasionally, I’d have a “flyer” that either owed to some inconsistency on my part(maybe a jerk here or there when I’d break steady-hold discipline for some reason) or perhaps to ammunition variability.  In all, twenty rounds of the PMC at 100 yards yielded decent results.  I then moved on to the Silver Bear 55gr. This provided poorer results. I found that roughly 1-1/2 MOA was the best I could consistently obtain. The wind was calm/negligible on the day of testing.

The Wolf was slightly better than the 55gr Silver Bear, perhaps 1-1/4 MOA, while the TulAmmo 75gr managed to perform on par with the 62gr Silver Bear, with which I was able to manage a consistent 1 MOA at the 100 yard distance. The Lake City 55gr did roughly as well as the PMC, perhaps a little better, with one group managing 3/4 MOA.  (Conveniently, I was using one box of ammunition per sheet, and due to few other shooters on the range, I was using the target in my lane plus the one adjacent to my left that was unoccupied.  This permitted me to put up two sheets per trip downrange, and test two ammo types at a time. For context, as I was shooting, there was only one other shooter on the twelve available 100 yard rifle lanes, so no problems about range courtesy.)  To date, I’ve tried several other brands of ammunition, but my best results have been with the 55gr bullet varieties, particularly the XM193BK types. I will say that the TulAmmo 75gr ammo shoots reasonably well, and that the 1:8 twist rate of this barrel seems to stabilize the heavy round much better than I expected.  On one particular day of shooting recently, I managed 1/2-3/4 MOA on four consecutive groups shooting the Federal Lake City 5.56 55gr. FMJ ammo.

One of the downfalls of the 5.56/.223 caliber to me is the rapidly increasing instability with distance traveled, particularly in heavier rounds. Consistently, the worst performance I receive is with so-called “Penetrator” 62 grain green-tip varieties, but I think that owes to variability in the symmetry of the placement of the steel core within the bullets.  For standard bullet types, at 200 yards, the first signs of instability are already showing, and at 300 yards, if you hadn’t noticed it beforehand, you will certainly find that it becomes more inconsistent, and this owes to the inherent instability of the round.  All of this has made me very curious about a new caliber that has arrived on the scene, which is .224 Valkyrie.  The idea is to provide a rounds of greater weight than .223/5.56 and to be able to carry supersonic velocity beyond 1000 yards.  So far, reports from the field on this particular round are promising.  It’s been out for around two years, and in that time, it’s gained quite a following.  It’s not uncommon to hear of consistent performance at 1000 yards.  I will be investigating that caliber soon enough, and I was heartened to learn that Wilson Combat now offers several barrels in that caliber.

It’s useful to note that while Wilson Combat no longer offers the exact barrel I purchased, their replacement in their lineup that has several potential advantages over the one I own. It is identical to mine in all but the following ways:

  • 1/2″-28 muzzle threads
  • .875″ gas seat
  • Slightly lighter at just about 40 ounces

Obviously, at the slightly smaller diameter forward of the gas block shoulder, it’s also going to be slightly lighter.  Additionally, because they now manufacture this with the 1/2″-28 threads, there are many more muzzle brake/flash hider options for the .223/5.56 caliber rounds.  One of the things that drove me to find a custom manufacturer of muzzle brakes had been the difficulty in finding a brake with the 5/8″-24 threads and bored for the smaller caliber.  This means you’ll have many more options for muzzle devices, although I maintain that you’d be hard-pressed to beat the performance and price of Larry’s.  I now buy all of my muzzle brakes from him. His work is just that good.

I’ve fired a large number of .223/5.56 rifles over my lifetime.  It’s a good round within its proper performance envelope, which for most people with average to good skills is going to mean it will be effective out to 300-350 meters, although it can be pressed beyond that.  What makes the round particularly effective, apart from good basic marksmanship, is a good barrel and a decent trigger.  There are many drop-in triggers available, and I prefer a single stage trigger in the 3.5-4.0 lbs breaking force.  If your barrel is good, and your fundamentals are sound, a decent trigger with a low-weight pull will enhance your accuracy.  What I can also tell you is that you will hear all sorts of bragging about the accuracy of various rifles, barrels, shooters, and so on.  The truth is that any barrel in the .223/5.56 caliber that will consistently shoot 1 MOA or better at 100 yards, and 200 yards, is an excellent barrel.  If it will do so in hot and cold conditions, in cloud and shine, with a variety of ammunition, it’s a particularly excellent barrel. I have no reservations about recommending the Wilson Combat barrel in .223 Wylde, and based on the clear attention to detail in all their products, I suspect you’ll find similar results.

Here’s the latest variant of the barrel in question, with the three improvements mentioned above”

They also have a 20″ variant of the same basic barrel, that ought to provide comparable performance, with a touch more muzzle energy:

It’s also useful to note that at distances under 400 meters, unless I’m specifically setting up a scope, I prefer Troy folding iron sights.  I generally substitute a KNS precision front sight post (.034) for better precision on my iron sights, or as I commonly do, I turn down a standard front sight post to 0.40. Here’s the parts list:

For what it’s worth, my philosophy of use with this barrel is on a defensive weapon used where mobility is limited, and maneuverability may be hampered.  Alternatively, a young and nimble, physically fit shooter should not suffer any significant mobility penalty, and may not mind the added weight given the enhanced accuracy over more run-of-the-mill AR-style barrels. It’s a handsome barrel, and can be coated with all the usual flavors of Duracoat and Cerakote, although I’d advise slightly roughing the surface with some 400 or higher grit sandpaper. In my case, I used Tactical Black by Duracoat, but I masked off the fluting for a two-tone appearance.

To date, the barrel has not failed to deliver extraordinary accuracy, and I can’t say enough about it. It will certainly lead me to try out this offering by Wilson Combat:

In .224 Valkyrie, I’ll be looking at longer-range accuracy.  I view it as a potential lightweight precision long-range rifle.  It utilizes the same upper and lower receivers, the same bolt carrier group, though with a 6.8 SPC bolt, and followers for 6.8 SPC in the otherwise stock AR-style magazine.  Essentially, for a caliber change, you need only barrel, bolt, and magazine followers.  The ballistic efficiency of the caliber is excellent, and I’m anxious to give it a try. Key to the Valkyrie’s long range performance is the extraordinarily high ballistic efficiency that permits the round to remain supersonic as far as 1300 meters.  That’s a significant advantage over cartridges like 6.5 Grendel, that is good for 750-800 yard in supersonic flight.  Another key is a barrel in 1:6.5 or 1:7 twist to stabilize the round.

Like anything else in the free market, as more shooters adopt the .224 Valkyrie cartridge, the cost of ammunition is likely to come down, right now averaging between $0.50 and $0.70 per round, although that’s based on the 75gr FMJ Federal that it most widely produced and available. I recently found a sale on this ammunition for as low as $0.42 per round, so it is coming slowly down, at least in the entry bullet weight. As you step up to the higher bullet weights, prices go up as well. One of the problems with a new cartridge is that it takes time for the round to gain broad acceptance(if it ever does,) and then it takes time for manufacturers to begin to make it in sufficient amounts to bring the equilibrium price down to a more bearable level.  The thing about this round is that equipped with a 6.8 SPC follower, a standard AR-15 magazine can happily accommodate 25-27 rounds in the same space 30 rounds of .223/5.56 will occupy.  Unlike some other rounds squeezed into the AR platform, you don’t lose much in capacity by adopting Valkyrie, but you will apparently gain much in accuracy at middle to longer range.

What I can say in an unqualified manner is that I have been extraordinarily pleased with the Wilson Combat barrel. One of my favorite drills with the rifle involves timed circuits of my 5-target paper. Essentially, I start at top-left, and go clockwise, ending at the center. Basically, from the first shot, I get three seconds to acquire and engage each of the four targets. What I’m really interested in during this drill is that I will generally start at the top-left, and continue to shoot until 20 rounds are expended. What I’m hoping to obtain is accurate, consistent engagement of targets. At 100 yards, I get three seconds per shot, but at 200 yards, I give myself 4 seconds per shot.  I also vary the pattern, going from top-left to bottom-right to top-right to center to bottom-left.  This sort of drill gets you accustomed to acquiring and engaging targets under time pressure.  It also means if you have a malfunction, you need to clear it and move on in timely fashion. Fortunately, with this rifle, I’ve yet to suffer any malfunctions, but practicing for them is still important.  This can be a lot of fun, and it’s a good way to find out how you’re managing your steady-hold discipline.  One of the things you’ll learn, if unaccustomed to the AR platform in general and the .223/5.56 NATO round in particular is that the zeroing procedure creates a rifle that will shoot high at 100m, 150m, 200m, and 250m, while being bang-on at 50m and 300m.  This is because the zeroing procedure developed by the US Army relies on the ballistics of the round, inasmuch as the round’s flight between the muzzle and 300m is represented by an arc. On the M16A1, the rifle I grew up with, the use of the rear dual aperture sight, flipping up and down between long and short range, is the method for maintaining the appropriate sight picture and corresponding strike of the bullet.

For those unfamiliar with the Army’s zero procedure for an M16, it’s done using a reduced-size silhouette target printed on a grid.  The target is placed at 25m(roughly 83 feet,) and the idea is that by using the iron sights, you shoot three-round groups and adjust the sights to move the strike of the bullets to the center of the target, while using the long range(smaller) aperature.  What this creates is a condition in which the arc of the bullet’s path will cross the line of sight to a 300m target at approximately 25m and again at 300m. I prefer to equip any AR-15 with folding back-up iron sights, usually Troy Industries’ offerings, before I mount any optic.  My notion is that iron sights are really my primary, and that any optic I’m using is something I consider a temporary “upgrade” the use of which may not be possible under some less than optimal circumstance.  I therefore always zero my AR builds with iron sights, and go through several cycles of folding and unfolding the sights to verify a return to zero.  Troy’s sights are pretty solid units, so I don’t sweat the return-to-zero so much, but it’s always good to check/test.  What I frequently customize on the Troy sights is the front sight post.  I nearly always replace the front post with a KNS Precision sight in .034 size, or I simply turn down the stock front sight post using a drill and a small flat file, as I did when I was a soldier.  I have always found that the smaller I make the post, the more accurate my shooting becomes. As was [re-]popularized by Mel Gibson’s character in The Patriot, the reliable marksman’s adage has ever been: “Aim small, miss small.” At any distance beyond 300m, the standard AR front sight post will begin to obscure a standard silhouette target, and while I’d be unlikely to be taking too many shots at more than 300m, it’s worth the extra stretch in effective range.  I find it also gives me a better way to gauge distance to a target.

Of course, with the original M16, M16A1, and M16A2, the length of the barrel was 20 inches, which has a definite effect on range, muzzle velocity/energy, and accuracy.  I always considered it foolish when the Army decided to downsize the M16 series into the M4 series, with the shorter 16 inch barrel, but I understood the rationale: They knew that very few soldiers would be taking shots at enemies 300m distant on the modern battlefield, but would instead face combat at distances between 25-200m much more frequently.  The shorter barrel makes for a lighter burden, and is more compact for confined spaces of corridors, alleys, hallways, and other more urban-oriented environments.  Also, as a practical matter, if one finds oneself needing to defend one’s convoy from the cab of a moving vehicle, the longer M16 would be far more unwieldy.

That’s one of the reasons I like the 18 inch barrels offered by Wilson Combat: They retain most of the ballistic advantages of the longer barrels, but they are much more easily maneuvered in tighter spaces.  That said, I still prefer the longer barrel of the standard rifle length.  Perhaps only because that is what I became accustomed to in youth, or perhaps because of my long reach, I find I am very comfortable with it. It helps that I’m a rather taller person, so that a rifle like the standard M16 already seems somewhat compact to me, particularly measured against the M14s and M1s of the generations I followed into uniform.

One of the best aspects about modern firearms is the ability to customize, particularly with the AR platform.  What makes the AR-15 platform so attractive to so many is that it’s an easy weapon system to master.  It’s relatively light and compact, and there is an almost endless array of parts to tailor your AR to your particular uses and tastes.  Myself, I’m willing to sacrifice a little lightness in favor of a better, somewhat heavier barrel, because I know it will pay accuracy dividends, and besides, one can nowadays save weight in other areas, perhaps using exotic, carbon-fiber hand-guards.  My point to you is that it’s possible to make your AR-15 uniquely your own, but for me, beginning with a really well-made barrel is essential, and the offerings by Wilson Combat are fantastic.

A large number of people buy(or build) expensive, fancy, high-class firearms, but seldom take them out to shoot. I realize it can be difficult, especially depending on where you live and what the legal environment looks like, but I must say that buying or building a nice rifle, followed by simply throwing it in the gun-safe, only to pull it out to admire every now and again isn’t a very good way to attain or maintain proficiency. Shooting skills are perishable.  Learning and mastering the battery of arms for a given firearm is also easily forgotten, and muscle memory doesn’t last indefinitely.  My point to readers is that in this increasingly uncertain world, don’t let your skills go without exercise.  If you’re going to build an AR-15 type, or intend to buy one with an eye toward customization, start with a good barrel. From my decades of experience, where your hardware is concerned, the barrel is the single most influential piece of hardware in your accuracy puzzle.

Editor’s Note: I NEVER receive any benefit for reviews of products. I don’t take any, and never would. The products endorsed in this article were purchased for my use, by me for my use, and those manufacturers had no input in what I’ve said about them here. Period.

Mourning for America

Saturday, July 13th, 2019

Mourning for America

I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted regularly, and I’d like to thank my loyal readers who check in occasionally. I’ve been busy at the paying job, and busy on the farm. That probably explains much of my absence, but the truth is that there is more to it than that. I’m like many other American conservatives who look around and wonder where their country has gone.  It’s dying. I can’t pretend that I feel positive about anything.  Watching the Trump administration struggle against the legions of fifth-column deep-staters secreted within the administration is simply torture.  At this rate, even if President Trump manages to win re-election, it seems as though it would avail us little more than a postponement.  The thing I had always feared is now demonstrably true: The left has so thoroughly embedded their sick ideology in all parts of America that we are watching out own children become the tools of our destruction.  Look at Google, a company I now consider to be a criminally seditious enterprise, and realize that for at least half a generation, they’ve been the source of such “knowledge” your school-aged children have been fed.  Your country is being re-populated with people who are either ambivalent toward American culture and the ideology that built the country, or in too many cases, overtly hostile to this nation and all the principles that had made it the envy of the world.  Ladies and gentlemen, I am convinced no longer of a future for the great republic to which I had swore an oath.  It’s dying, and if it goes but a few steps further, what we will experience is the final mourning for America.  I’m doing my mourning now, while there is time to remember the true value of that for which we must yet fight.

The left doesn’t care if they will burn it all down. Destruction doesn’t bother them, and in fact, it is their singular goal.  You and I have worked our whole lives long to build and create; to invent and innovate; to repair and renew the American dream and the American nation.  They denounce it all.  Their university professors are monstrous villains left over from the turmoil of the 1960s.  In the 1970s, they plotted against America(must watch!).  They plotted its diminution and demolition.  The whole time since, most of us went back to sleep thinking they had been repelled.  That was our version of falling for the notion that the devil didn’t exist.  They’ve never stopped.  They never paused.   While we went back to living our lives, they took over most aspects of the culture and the economy.  They took over education from stem to stern.  They own the media and big tech.  They own the establishment of BOTH PARTIES in Washington DC.  If you don’t think so, maybe you should let Paul Ryan tell you. He’s as indirect as ever, but the truth is revealed by his contempt. More, it was recently revealed what he thought of Trump, and in truth, Trump supporters, but Donald Trump had his own thoughts on the matter.

The throngs of illegal hordes at our borders are the foot soldiers for their overthrow of our nation.  Do you understand?  They’re supplanting us by migration and occupation.  They’re stealing our country and our culture.  We have at the moment the only politician who has tried to stop this overthrow of the American Republic, from his seat behind the Resolute Desk.  It’s fair to say that every President since at least January 1989 has been engaged in or committed to this overthrow.  Reagan was tricked into it with the 1986 amnesty deal.  All of this time, and the wreckage of our culture goes on unabated.

Working couples work their fingers to the bone, limit their procreation for the simple sake of economics, while all the takers live on the takings from their labors, raising an army of opponents to their own existence. It’s everywhere.  The welfare state, the Immigration and Naturalization (Hart-Celler)Act of 1965 has delivered the fruits it had been intended to bear: The American people and their distinct American culture are being systematically replaced by foreign nationals who no longer bother themselves about assimilation, and barely concern themselves with legality.  Of course they don’t follow our laws.  They’re here to destroy them.  They’re here to destroy your world. Think of Saruman’s legion of Orcs in the Two Towers. They were brought to the walls of Helms Deep not to subjugate a people into slavery, but to erase them from existence.  In this plot, however, many of these foot soldiers don’t even know that’s the purpose for which they’ve been assembled. Most of their individual motives are natural enough, but it is the motives of their masters with which we must concern ourselves.

Look around! President Donald Trump tried.  He did.  I don’t know that he or anybody else has the capacity to defeat them.  The so-called “deep state” is still trying to unseat him! They’re still trying to undermine him at every turn.  I know that like me, many of you undergo a daily emotional bender, like a drunk careening emotionally from curb to curb, between a glimmer of hope here or there as he fights back to the betrayals that come one right after the next, threatening to topple his administration.  We have federal judges engaged in this treason.  We have officers of our law enforcement and intelligence agencies in on the plot.  We’ve even had alleged “allies” who attempted to assist the coup d’etat while they carry out similar atrocities against their own citizens.  All of Western civilization is under attack, and like you, I go from despair to fury, while my wife calls our member of Congress and our two Senators daily.  I write emails.  I contribute to every cause I think will help.  Even there, we are too often betrayed.  The NRA is dead, for instance, and they will never get another dime from me, not even accidentally.  Instead, I am a member of and send extra money to GOA, and while I’m not Jewish, I am now a member of JPFO.  Wherever I can, I support groups that are real advocates of the right to keep and bear arms.  The NRA is to gun rights as Paul Ryan is to conservatism.  Still, many Americans contribute to the NRA out of habit rather than due to their institutional efficacy.

As I’ve explained elsewhere, when it comes to social media, I’m moving away from the biased, tired, burdensome platforms like Facebook and Twitter to better platforms like Parler and Gab and Minds. Even now, the tyrants at Apple are trying to squelch some of these new platforms by denying them access to their app store.

Only occasionally, we see glimmers of hope, even if it’s a simple display of truth in the face of pure idiocy:

The sad part is that Tom Homan is required to explain this to the blithering idiot. These people are attacking our country, the media is almost entirely in collusion with them, and unless President Trump pulls a rabbit out of his hat, I think we’ve already lost the republic.  I think it’s every bit as bad as that, as our friends and neighbors fire off their 4th of July fireworks in what seems increasingly like a memorial to a dead republic.

2020 is apt to be 1860 all over again.  We will either defeat them and put them on the ropes, or we will be faced with an all-out catastrophe that leads inexorably to the second American Civil War.  It’s astonishing and painful to think of it, but every election is one more opportunity to delay it, to forestall it, to prevent it.  In the mean time, I urge my fellow patriots to two courses that are in truth a single course: Prepare and fight. Fight and prepare.  Get your home and hearth in order for the worst possible events.  As you do, wherever you can, carry out the political fight knowing that to fail in politics is to resort to war.  Carry out your political pursuits with the fervor of those who know the truth of the only ugly alternative, opposed to the simple minds who blindly follow not knowing they are the intended cannon fodder for other peoples’ revolution. While you carry out the political battle, continue to prepare for the real one that our republic’s enemies are hoping to incite.  I will be talking about the kind of preparations you can make. I’ll be shifting the focus here a little. This may end in the ugliest of ways, and while we should fight like Hell to avoid such a thing, we must nevertheless be prepared for it, and be able to conduct it as necessary.  I really don’t wish to mourn for my country, but it may come to that, and if so, let it not be said that I hadn’t done all I could to prevent it. Prepare my friends, because it’s as bad as that. Fight with all you can on the political front while politics may still prevail, because time really is as short as that.

How Donald Trump Can Save the World (Or at least the Internet)

Tuesday, March 19th, 2019

Trump Can Save the World… Or at least the Internet

In the wake of the horrific shooting in New Zealand, what we’ve learned is that the country is fully invested in Internet censorship.  They now threaten to jail and fine people who possess, publish, and/or share video of the shooting.  There’s no such thing as Freedom of Speech in New Zealand, and this is a spreading phenomenon as more and more countries use their regulatory power over telecommunications companies as well as plain old tyrannical law to censor their people.  We must never permit this here in the United States, but increasingly, large corporations that claim exemptions under the Communications Decency Act have begun to behave like content publishers rather than mere publishing platforms for content creators.  This is despicable.  On the one hand, Facebook claims indemnification from lawsuits because they are not a content creator, but on the other hand, Facebook wants to control and maintain veto authority over content.   President Trump must act to take this on, and one lever he has against some foreign governments deals directly with Anglophone countries, including the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.  What he must do is threaten to walk from FVEY(pronounced Five Eyes) and begin denying them access to our signals intelligence.  They already deserve sanctions for assisting the Obama administration in spying on Trump’s campaign, but this is an opportunity to kill two birds with one stone: Reform and free the Internet along with free speech or the USA will withdraw from the UKUSA agreement.

President Trump should begin on a small scale, by conquering the Anglophone world, first. The first place he must act, sadly, is in the United States.  He must put the various “platforms” on notice that if they insist on censoring content, he will be forced to treat them just like any other content publisher.  Let’s see how that goes, first.  After that, he needs to push this first to the allegedly enlightened Anglophone world, and then to Europe, and from there, Central and South America.  After that, it gets harder, but he’s going to need to tackle this.  Not only can he save the Internet, but in the process, he can save the world. You see, the Internet really only works well when free speech prevails.

This morning, GatewayPundit published an article demonstrating pretty convincingly that Twitter has intentionally depressed the popularity of @realDonaldTrump and @POTUS in order to hamper President Trump directly.  There are two things about this that must be addressed:

  1. This may constitute an illegal campaign contribution to Democrats
  2. This would mean that Twitter is acting as a publisher, and not as a platform, which would end their exemption under the Communications Decency Act

Of course, there are all sorts of other things implied in this case, but it’s clear that Jack Dorsey, Twitter’s CEO, (@Jack on Twitter) is going to have some serious explaining to do. It’s clear that his social media platform is acting more like a content provider.  I and other conservatives have noted some “Shadow-banning” in association with our own accounts, and it began in earnest once Twitter began tinkering with its algorithms.  Early on, what you got in your timeline was always in pure date-time order, meaning you got the tweets of the people you followed, and that was it.  Then Twitter inserted ads.  After that, they began manipulating who you saw, and how often, and started trying to determine whose tweets you ought to see, and whose tweets you ought not see.  Then came the great timeline kerfuffle in which they openly and brazenly manipulated the way your timeline received tweets.  The blow-back was pretty severe, so they tucked away an option in your settings, hidden in plain sight, that permits as user to revert to plane date-time ordered timelines.  The problem is that even there, Twitter is still manipulating the results.

For the last several years, it has been strongly suspected, and now proven, that Twitter has shadow-banned users and content for what appear to be wholly political motivations. “Shadow-banning” basically lets a user send out his or her tweets like normal, but those tweets are hidden from the user’s followers, and neither the user nor his followers are aware.  In some cases, they’ve used this to simply delay the posting of tweets, meaning that your tweets will ultimately be seen, but often long after their relevance has been lost.  Sometimes, this seems to be user-based, and sometimes, it’s based purely on the content of a particular tweet.

What all of this means is that Twitter is engaged in systematic discrimination against conservatives and other users they don’t like for various reasons.  This means that they’re actually designing the content of peoples’ timelines, rather than letting come what may, as should be the case if they’re simply a platform for free speech, as they claim. It’s time to address this, and President Trump has that authority.  Yesterday, Devin Nunes(R-CA) filed a lawsuit against Twitter for defamation based on these and related types of discriminatory and misleading activities.  Here’s a clip from Hannity, on which Nunes appeared on Monday:

The President is in a position to do something about all of this, and he should leverage any assistance he can get from Congress, the Federal Communications Commission, the Department of Justice, the Federal Trade Commission, and any other assets at his disposal.  If Twitter(and other social media companies) is going to maintain its exemption under the Communications Decency Act, then they must immediately cease censorship of content.  Otherwise, they must lose their exemptions and be subject to the myriad of lawsuits that would ordinarily arise if that exemption was not in place.  The whole purpose of that exemption was to create a place where free speech could reign, and not be confounded by endless lawsuits, but when the platform itself is corrupted, it becomes a publisher and not a referee preventing abuses.  That’s where the Federal role to intercede arises.

In our modern age, Twitter is just one of a number of social media companies, but as Nunes contends in his lawsuit, to remain competitive in politics, business, or almost any sort of pursuit, one must be tied into social media or be overrun by competitors.  It’s therefore essential that Twitter and other “platforms” be brought to heel, before they are making all of the decisions about who can speak in any context on any subject.  What they’re doing now is a fraud and a hoax against their users.  If President Trump wants to make a real difference, he can save free speech, and thereby save the prime value of the Internet, which is to give you and I a voice and a way to plug into the global discussion.  Otherwise, it really is just an Orwellian world of double-speak in which freedom doesn’t exist despite flowery words to the contrary.

Go get ’em, President Trump!

 

Judge Jeanine Silenced By FoxNews(Updated 2x)

Monday, March 18th, 2019

Justice Finished at Fox News

Those of you who’ve been reading this blog for years will know that I’ve never been a big fan of Jeanine Pirro.  At times, I think her positions are not really so conservative, but that’s okay, because we’re all entitled to our own opinions.  If she annoyed me, I’d just change the channel, as I do with anybody else in media.  It’s called “choice,” but for some reason, leftists only enjoy non-choices disguised as choice(infanticide, for instance.)  In this case, what’s been revealed is the degree to which Fox News is becoming more and more like the other Ameriphobic news outlets.  The writing has been on the wall for several years, but viewers had reason to hope. Last Saturday, the 9th of March, on her Fox News weekly show Justice, Pirro asked about Ilhan Omar:

“Is her adherence to this Islamic doctrine indicative of her adherence to Sharia law, which in itself is antithetical to the United States Constitution?”

Here’s a clip from a Youtuber that contains the controversial clip from “Justice with Jeanine:”

Notice that the quote cited above is the quote widely cited in media, but having watched the video, in context, this question doesn’t seem extraordinary or out of place.  Given Omar’s spate of ridiculous anti-Semitic remarks in recent weeks, Pirro’s question doesn’t seem out of line.

Fox News, now apparently an Ameriphobic network like most of the rest, decided to pull the plug on Pirro’s popular Saturday evening show, bowing to pressure from Islamophiles everywhere, including in corporate management.

Apparently the opinions and sensibilities of at Fox News are those of James Murdoch, Rupert Murdoch’s Ameriphobic son, who is running the network. After her question about Omar, Pirro refused to apologize, and as of this Saturday evening, she wasn’t on the air.  Justice is out at Fox News.

Annoyed, President Trump even retweeted somebody else’s complaint about it:


Of course, this was after he had tweeted extensively on the issue, seeming to demand that FoxNews buck up and defend its hosts, including Judge Jeanine. Earlier, he had tweeted this three-part tweet-storm(part 1:)

 

(part 2:)

 

(part 3:)

 


Like President Trump, I have tired of Fox News’ endless besmirching of patriotism and Americanism, particularly when it comes to their weekend lineup. I’m also tired of their incessant sucking-up to Islam. Pamela Geller was apparently banned from the network some time ago, and Geller was an unabashed critic of Islam. Her contention has been that there’s no real difference between radical Islam and Islam.  After Fox News stopped putting Pamela Geller on the network, I knew the network was headed down the path of surrender fast.

As of Sunday, it seems that Jeanine Pirro may be out entirely at FoxNews.

What’s most sickening is that after Fox News criticized Pirro, Ilhan Omar thanked the network.

As I’ve previously reported on this blog, Fox News is going to Hell.  The few conservatives on the network won’t be able to save it from its idiotic management by #Ameriphobes like James Murdoch and his gaggle of clucking Islamophiles.  I think I’m going to switch to One America News Network. I’ve been a Dish Network customer for years, but it looks like DirectTV offers OANN, so I may be headed that direction, unless ROKU offers it.  Besides, from what I’ve seen, OANN’s reporting is decidedly not Ameriphobic.  It’s time to turn the channel on Fox News. As a whole, the network has become hostile to my sensitivities, and this silencing of pro-America(n), anti-Jihadi voices must be stopped.  Now Fox News coddles an anti-Semite like Omar, while they toss overboard a host who, despite my disagreements on many issues, is an undeniable patriot.

I hate the media Nazis who seem to have need to silence voices they don’t like.

Screw Fox News.

Update: Now we learn that Fox News has rehired the disgraced Donna Brazile, who helped rig debates by providing Hillary the debate questions.

Update 2: H/T Mr. L for pointing me to this accurate and excellent article at AmericanThinker.

See also: How Donald Trump Can Save the World(or at least the Internet)

Ameriphobia

Friday, March 15th, 2019

Ameriphobia: The irrational fear and hatred of America and Americans

If you say the least little thing about Islam and its adherents, you are immediately labeled. It is said of this despicable attack on a New Zealand mosque that the killer had been motivated by Islamophobia, the irrational fear and resultant hatred of people of the Islamic tradition.  This we are told is the nature of the motive behind the maniac who undertook this attack, and as a result, they point to Donald Trump(and his supporters, and other conservatives) because he once called for a ban on some Muslim migrants. On September the 12th, 2001, elements in the media began to arise to warn us to avoid falling prey to Islamophobic sentiments. The smoke-clouds had not yet cleared, and the fires within the rubble-pile at ground zero was still burning as CNN’s website published an article telling us that hate-crimes against Muslims were on the rise in the wake of the attack. The actual death toll was still unknown, but we knew the attack had killed at least 2,500 people, mostly Americans, and CNN was worried about an alleged rise in hate-crimes.  Ladies and gentlemen, this is despicable, and what I want to know is when we are going to create a label of our own, for once and for all, to be applied equally to the 9/11 attackers and to CNN: These people who are consumed with an irrational fear and loathing of America must hereafter be known as Ameriphobes, and their affliction must be called what it is: Ameriphobia.

Ameriphobia is the irrational fear and the hatred it generates against America and Americans.  It’s been widespread through much of the world for most of the last one-hundred years, but until the last few decades, it prevailed mainly among our enemies. Now, like a cancer, it has spread into the homeland, into our culture, into academia, government, and especially the media.  Those who spew their hatred against America and Americans are responsible for the irrational fear that drives the anti-American killers. Think of it: The 9/11 attacks were carried out by people militantly radicalized against America and Americans.  The killers in San Bernandino, CA, were motivated by the same irrational fear and loathing. In 2016, this disease of Ameriphobia even led government agents to try to undermine the candidacy, and then the presidency, of the pro-American nominee in the race, attempting a bloodless coup d’etat against the legitimately elected President of the United States.

Worst of all, the Ameriphobes have now succeeded in recruiting Republican betrayers to the cause.  Driven by this same irrational fear, they now agitate in the United States Senate against the President of the United States.  Secretly, they call themselves #NeverTrumpers, because they oppose President Trump, the openly America-first President, but in truth, what they really are is #AmericaLasters. The idea of a sovereign America, with sovereign American citizens, is so frightening to them that they can conceive of no goal more important than to block open America’s borders so that Americans can be overrun and replaced. The Democrats are so consumed with Ameriphobia that they cannot conceal their hatred any longer.  They now openly agitate against resolutions condemning the idea that illegal aliens would be permitted to vote against Americans and America.

In the wake of the shooting in New Zealand, these media maniacs have become consumed with Ameriphobia. Now twenty-eight months into an unremitting hatred of President Trump,  and a fear that America will be made great again, they feel compelled to connect monstrous events that occurred half a world away in a foreign country to the President of the United States.  Think of the preposterously irrational emotions behinds such a ridiculous contrivance! What, other than pure and unadulterated Ameriphobia, could possibly drive such hatred?  Ladies, and gentlemen, we must call them out wherever and whenever we see it, and it must be plain for all to see: The irrational fear and hatred of America and Americans has gone so far that we now have self-hating Americans. Born to this country, raised in the swaddling of the liberty she provides, they have been brain-washed to perceive this gentle embrace as an attack. They are terrified. Freedom is awful, they have been convinced to believe. This is the deadly nature of Ameriphobia, and it must be defeated.  Only Americans who love lives and cherish their country will understand that fear and hatred of America and Americans is self-destructive disease of the mind.

It’s not too late. We can defeat Ameriphobia and Ameriphobes, but to do so, we will first need to acknowledge that this disease is real, dangerous. It poses an existential threat against all we love, whether its adherents are Muslims or Leftists or any other form of statist.  It doesn’t matter whether it arises abroad or upon our shores, we must combat it and reject it at every turn. It’s time to cast out Ameriphobes because we cannot bear their irrational hatred any longer, and we must not shrink from identifying it.  At every turn, we must condemn Ameriphobia.  Our survival depends on it.

See also: How Donald Trump Can Save the World(or at least the Internet)

Tommy Robinson’s Revenge

Saturday, March 2nd, 2019

Exposing the FakeNews in the UK

Some of you may have followed the trials and tribulations of Tommy Robinson.  He’s a highly controversial figure in the UK, and the media spends a great deal of energy pursuing him.  He’s been repeatedly jailed for his activities in opposition to the Islamification of the UK, and due to his release of a video documentary,  he’s been banned from Facebook and Instagram.  Amazon, which still sells Mein Kampf, no longer sells Robinson’s book, Mohammed’s Koran: Why Muslims Kill For Islam. He’s constantly accused of “hate,” in a fashion that will be very familiar to American conservatives who find themselves endlessly painted as racists, bigots, homophobes, Islamophobes, and pretty much every other conceivable evil on the planet.  I’m not suggesting that he’s perfectly innocent, or that he’s never done a wrong thing in his life.  Even he doesn’t claim that.  This week, he published his own documentary that exposes the BBC.  In the final scene of the exposure, to see the looks on the faces of those he’s finally exposed is an absolute classic in the making.  Finally, he’s burned the biased media, in this case, BBC’s Panorama documentary program. It’s delicious in a way that only a working-class anti-hero battling the titans of the establishment can be. Whether you like him or not, this video that got him banned on social media platforms may not last long on Youtube.  It contains frequent profane language, so viewer discretion is advised.  It seems there are at least a few in the UK who haven’t yet entirely folded for the globalist agenda, after all. Here’s the video:

Who Or What Is Qanon?

Friday, February 22nd, 2019

The left says it’s a bad conspiracy theory by and for dolts who support Donald Trump.  The media, despite defaming Qanon as a conspiracy theory for brain-addled nitwits, gives this alleged “conspiracy theory” a great deal of print coverage on the Internet, but very little coverage on-air or in actual newsprint.  Why not?  Meanwhile, the very cynical NeverTrumpers either allege(like the left) that it’s a conspiracy theory, or that it’s a psychological operation by the Trump 2020 campaign, as a means and method by which to both recruit voters and also campaign volunteers(all of whom are presumably idiots because they support Donald Trump.)  There is a growing segment of our society, however, among whom Qanon carries great credibility. For them, it’s very nearly an article of faith.  Whatever Qanon is or isn’t, it’s becoming more and more difficult for the media to ignore, with giant “Q” signs showing up at Trump rallies across the country.  I wonder why the media doesn’t ask about “Q” at Whitehouse press briefings.  I wonder why it gets so little coverage on broadcast and cable television.  What do you call a “conspiracy theory” that the mainstream media largely refuses to cover in mass distribution despite its apparent growing reach across the country and around the world? Who or what is Qanon, anyway? Is he/it going to help President Trump vanquish the Deep State?  Is he really a “they?” What may be the most shocking part of this “conspiracy theory”could well be the discovery that it’s not a theory at all.

I began researching this subject a short time ago when somebody who follows me on Twitter contacted me via private messages about it.  In retrospect, I thought at the time that I had run across this someplace or another, but hadn’t given it any attention.  I think I saw some Q signs in a crowd either during a Trump Rally or perhaps in replay coverage last Fall.  I may have raised an eyebrow, but didn’t pay it much attention at the time.  In any event, it was also mentioned in comments on this site by a long-time poster, and while the Twitter follower had piqued my interest a bit, the long-time poster got my attention.  That poster provided some links, and some back-story information, some of which I’d already uncovered in my preliminary research, but some of which was new to me.  What I discovered is that there’s a growing community of people who definitely subscribe to this developing story, whether it’s conspiracy or real, and that fact is by itself all the justification I needed to investigate in earnest.  After all, for every person who exposes his or herself on the Internet, even in approximate anonymity, you must know that there are generally a dozen or more “lurkers” who read but never engage, for various reasons.  I know this to be a fact because at the peak of this blog, back in 2011-12, as many as two thousand people would read each of my posts for every one who commented.  Most people don’t want to create an account, or log into a website, or remember another damned password.  When I see evidence that hundreds of thousands of people are in some way participating in the Qanon phenomenon, I know that the actual number of people may well measure in the millions, or perhaps even tens of millions.

When you have any phenomena in any continental civilization that reaches even one-percent of the population, that is bigtime.  Less than two percent of our population watched the last game of the NHL’s Stanley Cup, last year. Less than two-percent of our population viewed the most recent episode of Empire, in which the now-controversial Jussie Smollett is an actor.  I had never heard of Smollett, but then, I’m a poor gauge of the popular culture.  Certainly, however, a movement that seems to have generated a whole cottage industry of Youtube Channels and websites that provide constant coverage of “Q” is not to be ignored.  Tallying the top dozen or so channels’ subscribers, the total comes out to well over a million, but that’s just subscribers. Some of the individual videos have many more than one million views, and some of them accumulate these large number of views in very short periods. If a video is garnering four or five times as many views in a week as the channel has subscribers, that’s an indicator of a large lurking audience, but when you see this consistently in viewership of a Youtube channel, what it means is that there’s a large, lurking audience that prefers to remain anonymous on principle.

In considering this Q phenomenon, what I hope to do is to determine whether there’s any veracity to it.  It’s a very detailed sort of story, but like all things even remotely political, the first question I have with this “Q” phenomenon is the underlying motive driving “Q.” There may be more than one person behind this, but still, there is some highly organized motive for pushing this.  It could be genuine.  It could also be a giant disinformation campaign and distraction.  It could be a campaign operation for Donald Trump or for one of his opponents, declared or undeclared for 2020.  It could be a foreign government, including the Russians, or it could be a past nemesis playing games at the expense of Trump’s supporters.  It could even be a collection of teenagers spoofing adults all over the globe and having one Hell of a good laugh at their expense.  One of the best clues we actually get comes in the examination of motives combined with the information provided to date by “Q.”

The stated motive is along the lines of communicating with patriots about what President Trump is doing to fight the deep state, along with assisting the President in that pursuit.  That sounds comforting, and it surely appeals to all the people who in their fondest wishes would like a superhero to come save us from the Deep State and its parade of villains.  Another possible motive would be money.  Imagine the advertising revenues one could rack up on Youtube and other platforms if you could generate tens of millions of views.  Of course, this must be tempered by the fact that Youtube and other platforms seem to be actively suppressing Qanon-related content, in part by de-monetizing some Q-related videos. (Some of the channel owners have bitterly complained in some videos I’ve seen.)  On Facebook and Twitter, Q-content seems to get suppressed.  Even so, the current strategy for circumventing this is to use graphical memes to carry the message, because those are so much more difficult for automated systems to screen and censor.  One “Q-tuber” seems to use code to speak to his audience, referring to Qanon as “our favorite anon.”  In fairness, however, I must state that it seems as though most of these purveyors of all things “Q” have absolutely no apparent commercial motive to speak of, while just a few seem to be more “about the Benjamins,” but even for those, that still seems like a secondary or tertiary concern.

Setting aside the stated “good intentions,” let’s examine what, apart from the purely commercial, could be among the motives of Qanon.  If I were a President under siege by a deep state, I would like a Qanon-style operation working on my behalf, but aren’t there easier ways?  It is true that the mainstream media is highly controlled so as to prohibit Trump from having much direct interaction with the people.  The State of the Union, earlier this month, is a great example of why the media wants Trump’s direct communications with the American people strictly limited, and why they wish to create a certain image of Trump that does not comport with reality, but creates a false reality they want their viewers to absorb.  This is why the media hates Trump’s use of Twitter, but they eventually remedied this: At first, they covered almost every Tweet; then they became better at framing those Tweets in a manner that was more derogatory to the President.  Still, they can’t put words in his mouth, much as they might like to, but they can misrepresent context.  For this reason alone, it is understandable why a Qanon-like character would certainly be a desirable thing, carrying the President’s water to the public, but bypassing the media.

I also think that if this was bad actor, the President would quickly send forth emissaries to disclaim and disown Qanon.  Imagine what the Democrats and other Deep-State dimwits would do with such a thing if it could be traced back to Russia, or some other locale indicating nefarious origins and intentions.  They would crucify him, and the subsequent impeachment and Senate trial would have been over some time ago.  Hell, Mueller would have been on the case!  He would have ordered a 6am raid on Q-Central, wherever that may be.  More curiously, the press has been mostly hands-off on broadcast and cable television, and in printed versions of their publications.  Online articles are one thing, but they seem to intend to periodically  flood of the zone, whereby somebody new, only now becoming aware of the Qanon phenomenon(much like me,) would do a quick Google Search, finding that the overwhelming majority of the first one-hundred links are highly critical and all refer to it as a conspiracy theory.  Go search for “Qanon” on Google.  (Myself, for the moment, I prefer duckduckgo.com as my search engine.)  I can almost guarantee to you that the linked results account for many fewer page views than the number of total Youtube views, and this means it’s been put in place as a deterrent or smoke screen.  To what end, I cannot yet say, but this is the obvious truth.  It’s also interesting that if you look at them by date, they seem to come in waves.  All of the outlets publish something within a couple of days of one another, followed by silence, perhaps for months, and then another wave comes in.  This is classic disinformation, and the media is carrying it out with apparent zeal.

The reason this is done is fairly simple: Most search algorithms include a weighting of some sort for recency.  Search engine users generally want newer and therefore  more relevant content, in general.  If all of the big media outlets post anti-Qanon content in the same week, they will all age at approximately the same rate too, with respect to the search engines, which means people like me, who may post about Qanon just once will eventually come in as being more current/recent in the search results.  Since I’m not part of their narrative, that’s bad from the suppressors’ point of view.  Periodically, roughly every three to six months, it seems, a new litany of anti-Qanon articles is published.  The same seems to be true on Youtube.  A spate of videos appear from different media sources, all at once, and all with the same theme: Qanon is a conspiracy theory and its adherents are kook-ball, tinfoil-hat-wearing, right-wing, Trump-supporting morons.  It’s so consistent that it’s clearly orchestrated, or at a minimum, herd-directed reporting.  Again, you can search it yourselves. Go to Youtube, and you will see that if you search for “Qanon,” almost all of the top results will be from around six months ago, and it will include videos from large left-wing outfits like MSNBC, as one example.  This is the trend you will see again and again.  If Qanon is really just a silly conspiracy theory, why are all the big outlets expending so much time on it, and why with such regular synchronicity?  Perhaps more importantly, why is it now penetrating into the popular media culture space.  Just days ago, Qanon was mentioned in the popular television series NCIS New Orleans.  I don’t watch any network television, so I didn’t see this, but it’s become big news in the Q-world.  Even though here too, it was defamed as a conspiracy, the fact that it garnered any attention in a major television show acts as a gauge of the phenomenon’s growth.  Here’s the clip:

The major media uses their television shows to push narratives they want to see active in the culture.  There’s not a reader of this blog who doesn’t know that, hasn’t noticed it, and hasn’t become sick over how media has been used for at least two generations to besmirch all things conservative, and all things patriotic.  The anti-American bias is a theme that has dominated mass media in the US for a long, long time.  The thing to note is that it’s a powerful tool, and the purveyors don’t generally waste it on things of little or no importance.  Prime-time television space is literally gold, so that you don’t waste part of a scene attacking something you don’t think warrants suppression.  Remember, it’s all about marketing and positioning: Just as they want to associate conservatism with all things bad, evil, hateful, and vile in the world, so too do they seem intent on similarly besmirching Qanon and its followers as crazy conspiracists.  If there’s nothing to see here, why bother?  The answer may be as simple as this: Despite other ongoing attempts to suppress Qanon‘s growth and reach, they’ve failed, and the growth has occurred and the reach has spread. Why would they wish to suppress it?  Well, obviously, it’s because they’re Deep-State shills… or it could be a simpler commercial motive: If you’re spending your time researching Qanon, you’re not consuming as much of their bilge.

Another reason could be that they’re actually behind it.  If one wanted to watch Trump supporters jump through hoops in pursuit of their tails, this would be a fine strategy.  Hell, they already know that the intended audience is not reading, watching or listening to their garbage most of the time, so why not torment them a bit?  After all, since the audience in question considers this collection of outlets to be “FakeNews” anyway, why not give them a real taste of “FakeNews?”  Again, the problem here is that if this were the case, you would expect the Trump team to put out the word that the Qanon phenomenon was a hoax, and part of “FakeNews.” No such disclaimer seems to have been forthcoming.

Or has it? One of the things I found in my research was the claim that the United States Secret Service was prohibiting people from entering Trump rallies while wearing Q-themed outerwear.(T-shirts, etc.)  This seemed to have occurred in the wind-up to last Fall’s elections. This story was posted on the DailyBeast, a publication that is as fake as FakeNews gets, but this claim appears to have been true. It was explained away in Q-posts as the result of some deep-state operative calling in threats against the President referencing Qanon.  That’s a nifty story, and it surely would explain why the Secret Service is keeping Q-merch out of rallies, but not so fast.  The Secret Service isn’t generally staffed by fools, and I doubt whether such a thing would go on for long unless there was a serious threat or the President and his people ordered it. It’s a good deal to explain away, and just a bit too convenient. What if the real reason the Secret Service doesn’t wish to let Q-shirts into rallies is because the President doesn’t want to associate even an implicit endorsement with this Qanon phenomenon?  Or, what if the President doesn’t want the media to give coverage to Qanon because it is a political operation that is part of the President’s campaign, and another fake persona thrust into the limelight by Donald Trump might be embarrassing.  Remember John Miller?  Is he Q?

I jest, but only slightly. One of the things that has appeared in all the Q posts is this: “Q+.”  I can hear the collective groans of my readers.  Yes, when Q+ appears as the signature at the bottom of a post, (rather than the simple “Q,”) it is alleged to either be the President himself, or alternatively, posted in the presence of the President or with his knowledge/consent, depending upon whose particular interpretation you accept.  If Donald Trump can play John Miller, surely he could play Q or Q+(or both.)  In any event, I find some of the Q-posts humorous even when the subject is deadly serious, because here, Barack Obama is invariably referred-to as “Hussein.” If nothing else, it should make all but the Deep-Staters smile.

Let’s summarize some things, so far: Qanon is alleged to be some sort of intelligence officer(or collection of them) who are working with Donald Trump to vanquish the Deep State.  Qanon posts information in “drops” that convey information that at times is very specific, but also sometimes vague, and encoded.  Very often, information is provided in the form of questions that seem to lead inexorably toward a single logical result.  The poster(s) known as “Q” has freely admitted that disinformation is included in some “drops.”

You can visit the following sites for more info:

  • Qanon “drops” can be found here: https://qanon.pub/
  • They can also be found here with added features(for example, the President’s tweets, toggled by clicking a button at the top): https://qmap.pub
  • So-called “proofs” of the legitimacy of Qanon can be found here: https://www.qproofs.com

Here is a list of some popular Qanon-content Youtube channels(a.k.a. “Q-Tubers“):

There are numerous others, many, but these appeared most often in my searches for content, and I must admit humor is a winner with me, so IPOT was my favorite, based purely on delivery and production value. PrayingMedic seems much more serious and sedate. Some of them have voices I just can’t take, and while that’s surely superficial, it makes it harder for me to listen to them. Others, like Craig Mason’s Reasonable Conversation Channel, I just want to tell him to a.) shave, and b.) stop grinning. I know, I know, that’s probably tough advice to swallow coming from a guy who has a face for radio and a voice for print, but again, you just have to call the balls and strikes sometimes. Some of them certainly work harder to deliver interesting content, and some work harder at delivery, and some frankly should stop cluttering the Internet with their babble. I’m sure they’d say the same of me.  One of the quickest ways for a so-called Q-Tuber to cause me to punch out is to talk about 9/11 conspiracies, or other such well-debunked nonsense.  None of the videos I’ve viewed by the list of Q-Tubers above(so far) have mentioned outrageous 9/11 conspiracies of the sort for which Alex Jones has been the purveyor.  Apparently, there’s also a sidebar about Alex Jones and Jerome Corsi that needs to be covered at some point.

Of all the Qanon-related content I’ve encountered so far, that which drives me right to the edge is the decoding videos on Youtube where various forms of Gematria decodes are done with the most tortured logic and fantastic assumptions.  Frankly, I can take just a minute or two of those videos before I’m ready for a rubber-padded cell.  The poster(s) Q frequently exhorts readers to “Learn our comms.”  If their communications involve Gematria decoding, I’m likely out.

For those of you who, like me, are just now becoming acquainted with all of this Qanon business, I beg your indulgence as I continue my research. The material above should provide a good starting point for those of you interested in researching this subject, but if nothing else, ought to provide you a little entertainment.  I’m far from a conclusion on what I think of the veracity of this story, and my default position is to side with David Hannum, who purportedly said of PT Barnum’s Cardiff Giant hoax: “There’s a sucker born every minute.”  Still, there are some tantalizing details here that seem more than mere coincidence, and  deserve to be ruled-out by facts before dismissal.  I’ve always been a sucker for a good mystery or spy novel, so while some of this research can be tedious, at least it’s not completely dreary. I’d also note that if some of the information posted by Q is accurate, we’re even more vastly under-served by the grotesquely corrupt mainstream media than even a cynic like me had dared to imagine.

In the next installment, I will discuss so-called “Q-proofs,” which is a class of circumstances, events, images and items of news that would seem to lend more credibility to the Qanon claims. I’m still not sure what to think of this, or how seriously to take it, but for the fact that it appears a fairly significant number of Americans seem to believe some or all of this story.  It may all be a hoax, or it may be deadly serious, but I’m not yet convinced either way. I am covering this because some proportion of my readers have now requested it, and because anything that has hundreds of thousands or even millions of Americans this engaged is something that demands examination.  Other than to cast aspersions, the lamesteam media certainly isn’t investigating it very seriously.

To be continued.  In the meantime, I leave you with the latest Q-video from IPOT:

 

Napolitano Wrong, As Usual

Tuesday, January 8th, 2019

As usual, the open-borders, chamber-of-commerce media, including FoxNews rushed out to tell you what you need to know.  As usual, they intentionally mislead you about the nature of the law. While I’ve already covered this issue, demonstrating plainly that President Trump has the authority, the media is great at lying and propagandizing, and sadly, that includes FoxNews on immigration-related issues.  Everything is squeezed through the filters they want you to see.  Let’s take a look at what FoxNews “Judicial Analyst” Andrew Napolitano has to say, and let’s see about the facts.  First, the video:

Now let’s analyze Napolitano’s claims and assertions about the law, which I’ve here paraphrased and condensed for further examination:

  • Presidents can’t seize property under emergency declarations.
  • Presidents can’t spend money without congressional authorization in an emergency.
  • The President must “make a case” for a declared emergency.
  • If the President had authority to spend money under emergencies, we’d have seen it before, but we haven’t.
  • Sometimes Congress has “looked the other way” when Presidents reallocate defense money from one use to another, but it doesn’t make it lawful.

First, as a general observation, let it be acknowledged that in certain respect, Andrew Napolitano is a radical libertarian on immigration generally, which is a strong reason for FoxNews to have picked somebody else to provide “Judicial Analysis.”  Naturally, FoxNews is itself a corporation that favor open borders, so it’s easy enough to understand their motives in picking open border hacks like Napolitano to make this particular case.

The first assertion of Napolitano was that the President cannot seize property under emergency declarations.

Let us go right to a pretty open-and-shut case: Roosevelt ordered the surrender of privately owned gold and gold certificates to the Federal Reserve on 5 April, 1933.  This was done under executive order 6102, with authority arising from the Trading With the Enemy Act of 1917, as amended. Gold is private property. Roosevelt was acting pursuant to an emergency he declared. Not convinced? Let’s go on to a second example, shall we?  In 1944, Roosevelt ordered the plants, offices, and warehouses of Montgomery Ward to be seized in order to force compliance with an emergency-based order of collective bargaining with a labor union, due to the ongoing war, which was the basis of the emergency. (World War II.)

Let’s just stop right there on Napolitano’s first point.  He’s busted.  Thoroughly.  There are hundreds more examples where Presidents made seizures of private property in time of war or emergency.  It’s called the “rule of necessity,” and it is the legal basis for all emergency doctrine.  Like most libertarians, I find such authority despicable, but they exist, have been exercised, and precedents must be recognized, as all the “wise judicial analysts” like to insist.

The Law: 1  Andrew Napolitano: 0

His next assertion was that Presidents can’t spend money without authorization by Congress in an emergency.  Let’s ask a Democrat Congressman:


Imagine that!  In addition to this, however, there are at least three known instances of Presidents’ spending without any prior Congressional appropriations:

  • Washington’s Unilateral spending to suppress the 1794 Whiskey Rebellion
  • Jefferson’s purchases of saltpepper and sulphur after the Chesapeake incident
  • Lincoln’s advance of $2 million to purchase supplies in advance of the Civil War in 1861

(See pages 22-23 of the following PDF from Harvard Law:  Constitutionality of Executive Spending)

These are older examples, but if it was good enough for Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln, it’s probably good enough for President Trump.

The Law: 2  Andrew Napolitano: 0

His next assertion was that Presidents must “make a case” to declare emergencies.  This implies that a President must go find approval.  That’s not the case. In point of fact, all a president must do is issue an emergency declaration, and point to his legal authority, and then act.  This has been done repeatedly.

The Law: 3  Andrew Napolitano: 0

His next assertion has already been covered: He claimed that if the President had such authority, we’d have seen it used before, but we haven’t.  See Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln above.

The Law: 4  Andrew Napolitano: 0

His last general assertion is that Congress may have “looked the other way” when it suited them, but that it isn’t lawful.

The problem with this notion is that legal precedents are born of such practices.  If Congress historically “looks the other way,” time after time, permitting the President to do such things without challenging them, it can also be interpreted as an endorsement of that action, or at least an affirmation of its legitimacy. In short, the court could very well view it as a precedent that bears upon their decisions thereafter.  “Looking the other way” once or twice might be tantamount to surrendering the issue in perpetuity.

The Law: 5 Andrew Napolitano: 0

Of course, there was at least one more assertion that had been made by Brian Kilmeade in the video clip above.  He mentioned that one couldn’t rightly term this an “emergency” because it would take too long.

This is a bizarre point.  The United States has been operating under all sorts of emergency statutes for DECADES, some of them continuously since the days of Jimmy Carter, and even earlier.  Read this fascinating article.

Imagine that, and yes, score Mr. Kilmeade a big fat zero.

It’s time for the left and the pro-amnesty, open-borders media and political culture to shut the Hell up and get out of President Trump’s way.  If he declares an emergency, he’ll have every bit of law and precedence on his side.

The New Communists at FoxNews

Sunday, December 6th, 2015

cargile_fnc_smSaturday afternoon, I took a little bit of time to watch some news. I flipped over to FoxNews, and there I witnessed Mickey Cargile explaining to openly supportive host Eric Shawn and his audience that drug prices are a moral issue, and a quality of life issue, more than economic issue. I couldn’t agree more.  His conclusion, however, was based on the moral system of collectivism. I realize that the anchors and stories on FoxNews on weekends tend to be the “B-Team” or even the “C-Team,” but this is despicable. Watch for yourself:

Apparently, Cargile believes this is a moral issue, but unfortunately, his moral standard is collectivism. He ignores entirely the morality of a civilized country inasmuch as he openly attacks private property rights, private wealth, and the freedom to choose. Reading between the lines, he’s advocating some sort of government-enforced price control at the very least, and perhaps even complete expropriation at the worst. This implies violence. In order to enforce such a thing, what one is saying is that one is ready to kill people in order to take their things if they do not otherwise consent.

The host, for his part, is no better. He smears the owners of the rights to the Hepatitis C treatment under discussion as people who are merely out to profit, first, as if profit is somehow an evil, and second in that they might use that profit to “buy a new Ferrari.” This shameful broadcast merely confirms my contention that FoxNews is all about co-opting conservatism. There’s nothing remotely conservative in this, Cargile’s protests about his continuing devotion to the free market notwithstanding.

For those who don’t understand the principles involved, let us be clear: If you invent a thing, and I purchase the rights to that thing from you, my moral claim to the thing in question is every bit as legitimate as yours when you had invented the thing. More, since it’s now my thing, I have the absolute right to buy it and sell it as I see fit, and the only moral method by which to obtain it is to pay the price at which we arrive by mutual consent. Any government interference in that exchange, either to my benefit or to a purchaser’s, is tyranny.

What Cargile advocates in this clip is tyranny. What the hapless Mr. Shawn approvingly supports is no different from what Hugo Chavez had imposed in that poor, enslaved, collapsing communist state that is Venezuela: Communism. The closer we get to complete collapse, and the more people begin to shrug their shoulders over the concepts and moral standing of individual rights, the more rapidly our collapse will accelerate.

One might argue, as the communists at FoxNews seem to insist, that there is some maximum amount that ought to be charged for some life-saving, or quality-of-life-preserving drug or treatment. My question for you is: Had I Hepatitis C, how much of my earnings would I forego for how long a period to finance a cure? Is there any amount of money I would not pay? One might argue, as the dolts on FoxNews have done here, that such a burden is unaffordable, and use this as a justification to steal. Theft via government action is still theft, even though done under color of law. The fact that the government was placed in office by vote does not reduce the significance of the crime, but merely multiplies the number of criminals and broadens the expanse of the guilt(though its concentration is not diluted.)

With this sort of thing becoming the norm on FoxNews, as further evidence of the spread of collectivist ethics throughout the culture, we cannot and will not last.

Governor Palin: “Stop Electing Republicans who Act Like Democrats”

Wednesday, June 25th, 2014

We must break up the GOP establishment

Governor Palin is right, and I’m inclined to act on the principle that there is nothing to be gained by compromise with the GOP establishment.  I am to the point where I’d rather have an open leftist elected to office than to see one more of these despicable, snake-in-the-grass RINOs who act like Democrats when they get to Washington DC anyway.  Here’s Governor Palin from Hannity on FNC last night:

While Boycotting A&E, You Might Consider this Intolerant Yahoo Too

Monday, December 23rd, 2013

It takes a real moron to top the idiocy of Drew Magary’s original GQ piece on the subject of Phil Robertson, but leave it to Yahoo News (a contradiction in terms if ever there’s been one) to dig up a writer who’s even more maniacally stupid than his peer at GQ.  Yahoo News posted a piece by Josh Barro, an editor at Business Insider,  proclaiming: “When you’re defending Phil Robertson, Here’s What You’re Really Defending.”  It takes approximately two minutes to read, but let me cut to the quick: It’s nonsense, like all that’s gone before, and only people detached enough from reality to get their information from Yahoo News are apt to be dumb enough to fall for his foolish premises.

He asserts the following, based on quotes from Mr. Robertson:

  1. Robertson thinks black Americans were treated just fine in the Jim Crow-era South, and that they were happy there. ” I never, with my eyes, saw the mistreatment of any black person. Not once. Where we lived was all farmers. The blacks worked for the farmers. I hoed cotton with them. I’m with the blacks, because we’re white trash. We’re going across the field…. They’re singing and happy. I never heard one of them, one black person, say, ‘I tell you what: These doggone white people’—not a word!… Pre-entitlement, pre-welfare, you say: Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues.”
  2. Robertson thinks the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor because they didn’t believe in Jesus. “A ll you have to do is look at any society where there is no Jesus. I’ll give you four: Nazis, no Jesus. Look at their record. Uh, Shintos? They started this thing in Pearl Harbor. Any Jesus among them? None. Communists? None. Islamists? Zero. That’s eighty years of ideologies that have popped up where no Jesus was allowed among those four groups. Just look at the records as far as murder goes among those four groups.”
  3. Robertson hates gay people. Robertson in 2010: ” Women with women, men with men, they committed indecent acts with one another, and they received in themselves the due penalty for their perversions.  They’re full of murder, envy, strife, hatred. They are insolent, arrogant, God-haters. They are heartless, they are faithless, they are senseless, they are ruthless. They invent ways of doing evil.”

“This last one is key. My inbox is full of “love the sinner, hate the sin” defenses of Robertson’s 2013 remarks. But Robertson doesn’t love gay people. He thinks they’re, well, “full of murder.” His views on gays are hateful , inasmuch as they are full of hate.”

Let us tackle these assertions one by one.  In the first instance, Mr. Robertson’s view of the pre-civil rights era of the South is his own.  He’s clearly speaking from the experiences of his own life.  Perhaps Barro could consider, even momentarily, that in Robertson’s personal experience, maybe it wasn’t quite so bad as is widely believed particularly by people like Barro (or me) who hadn’t been born as yet. For a man born in 1984 (when I was a young private in the Army) to pontificate about the implications of Mr. Robertson’s statements about the South is approximately on par with my commentary on the social benefits of prohibition.  I know only what history records, but my knowledge is hardly exhaustive.  Neither is Barro’s. Nothing about Robertson’s remark on this topic suggest he’s a racist, but that is precisely what this Harvard-grad goof-ball wants you to believe.

His second assertion is that Robertson believes Japan bombed Pearl Harbor because they didn’t believe in Jesus.  That’s not what Robertson said, and while it stretches credulity to think he was saying that, what Barro tries to do here is to state the obvious: Japan wasn’t going to believe in Jesus in 1941, and one couldn’t imagine they would.  I think Robertson’s point was a bit more sophisticated than Barro’s tautology implies.  Robertson was merely showing that the mindset of Christians(believers in Jesus) has been rather non-violent in the last century.  The ethos of communists, Nazis, and so on have been rather less tolerant, and seemingly more inclined to violence.  Hitler’s gangs did all they could to discourage Christianity, as Barro is undoubtedly aware, and communism basically outlawed all religions.  In Islamic countries today, Christians and other non-Muslims are routinely persecuted and murdered.  This is not generally the case in modern-day countries where Christianity dominates.

He claims Robertson “hates gay people.”  He then goes on to list a litany of things Robertson said about unrepentant sinners, but present them in a way that implies he had said these things about homosexuals specifically.  Being as adulterers are in Robertson’s list of sinners, taking Barro’s view, one would suppose Robertson hates himself, having confessed to adultery in his own life.  No, this is a pathetic attempt to do what others have tried over the last several days: When Robertson is asked what are sins by Magary, he went on to list a bunch of sins, a list that looks remarkably familiar to anybody who has read 1 Corintheans.  He did not qualify them.  He listed them.

I realize I am not the most sophisticated fellow, but I am able to grasp the concept of lists.  If you ask me to list fruits, I might say “bananas, raspberries, strawberries, oranges, apples, and grapefruit.”  This doesn’t say the first thing about which I like most or least, or which I consider the worst or the best.  It’s merely a list.  If you ask me to list vegetables, it will be much the same: “Corn, carrots, peas, broccoli, green beans, cauliflower, and radishes.” From this list, you will not be able to discern much about my preference for vegetables. You won’t even know if the one I like most or least actually made the list. All you have is a list that may or may not be exhaustive or exclusive.

As if to underscore his lunacy and lack of context, Barro goes on…and on:

“As a side note, it’s remarkable how often these things come as a package. Robertson’s sincere doctrinal view about the sinfulness of homosexuality comes packaged with animus toward gays and retrograde views about blacks and non-Christians. It’s almost as though social conservatism is primarily fueled by a desire to protect the privileges of what was once a straight, white Christian in-group, rather than by sincere religious convictions.”

In any other political context, it might seem odd how this writer seems to ignore the “sincere doctrinal view” Robertson apparently holds about Communists and Nazis. Perhaps what Barro is really confessing is his personal alignment with those ideologies.  After all, Nazis all but invented the sort of propoganda Barro is spouting here, and no place more than Stalinist Russia exhibited his flair for the desire to silence dissent and create guilt by association.

“You might recall that conservatives are currently trying to figure out what to do about the fact that the Republican Party performs quite poorly with the growing share of voters who are not white, straight Christians. They think some of it has to do with economic issues. But then  they’re scratching their heads, trying to figure out how Mitt Romney lost the Asian American vote 3-to-1 even though, by Republican “maker-vs.-taker” metrics, Asian Americans are disproportionately likely to be “makers.”

I don’t believe actual conservatives have any problem figuring out what to do, although Republicans may. What Barro leaves unstated is that the Democrats have carried the Asian-American vote for generations.  Conservatism doesn’t have a problem with non-white, non-straight voters, so much as they have a problem with statist buffoons of the sort defined by Mr. Barro. He concludes with this bit of nonsense, in case you lost interest:

“Non-whites and non-Christians and gays keep getting the sense that, even setting aside policy, conservatives and Republicans just don’t care for them. The “Duck Dynasty” episode, with Ted Cruz and others rushing out to defend Robertson’s honor, is just another example of why.”

Mr. Barro, isn’t Ted Cruz non-white?  Isn’t Bobby Jindal non-white?  Isn’t Sarah Palin non-male?  Isn’t Tammy Bruce non-straight?  Haven’t all of these defended in some fashion the free speech and free religious thought of one Phil Robertson?  This asinine attack on conservatives because they defend a man for stating his sincere religious beliefs has been extended now into the preposterous scenario of a Harvard-grad, establishment-bound numb-skull professing to us what non-whites, non-males, and non-straights may think, even as they step forward to tell us that Robertson has every right to believe sins are what may be found listed in the Bible.

Any writer who so thoroughly debunks his own argument in the span of two sentences ought to be ignored, and truth be told, so should any “news outlet” that publishes his drivel.  Barro’s article drips with venom and hate, and yet he is able to imagine hatred into the heart of Phil Robertson, who actually expressed the contrary premise that he loves all people, even sinners like himself. Who’s the real hater, Mr. Barro? Apparently, I’m not the only blogger to take a dim view of Barro. That Yahoo News posts such bilge is evidence enough to click away from that site too.

Sarah Palin on Phil Robertson Suspension (Video)

Friday, December 20th, 2013

Governor Palin appeared on Hannity on Thursday night to discuss the Duck Dynasty situation on A&E. Clip courtesy of Sarahnettoo on Youtube:

Lesson Christians, Conservatives Can Learn from A&E Network’s Intolerance

Thursday, December 19th, 2013

Dynastic Decline?

I’m not among the millions who regularly watch Duck Dynasty on A&E network, but I am among the many millions who will avoid the network in my future viewing choices.  The network’s #1 smash hit is headed by patriarch Phil Robertson.  Robertson was asked during an interview for GQ magazine about morality.  He cited the Bible, and when asked to explain or expound upon his stance on homosexuality, he explained in graphic, somewhat crude language why he couldn’t understand the desires of homosexuals.  The network then suspended him.  What’s now clear is that A&E has managed to incite a backlash against the network, and it’s obvious that the network is responding to political rather than market-based concerns.  In the free market, a network wouldn’t suspend the star of its top-rated show for simply stating his religious beliefs.  No, this case isn’t about the intolerance of Phil Robertson, but the intractable, unflinching orthodoxy of the rabid left.  The intolerance is all theirs, but there exists a dirty little secret: They’re only willing to shut down conservatives, Christians, and capitalists, while they cringe in fear of Muslims, feminists, leftist groups, and the homosexual lobby.  There’s an important lesson in all of this for conservatives generally, but Christians particularly: They don’t fear you, and you’ve given them no reason to think otherwise.

Consider the lead-in to Drew Magary’s GQ article:

“How in the world did a family of squirrel-eating, Bible-thumping, catchphrase-spouting duck hunters become the biggest TV stars in America? And what will they do now that they have 14 million fervent disciples?”

Could a news outlet or magazine make such a remark about any group if they happened to be other than Christian?  This lead-in typifies the mindset not merely of those in leadership at A&E, but of the entire media establishment.  “Bible-thumping?”  Who does Magary think he is? Bill O’Reilly?  This should set the tone for you quite aptly. With a lead-in like that, you can guess that it won’t be long before the GQ writer seeks to create a controversy.  The term “Bible-Thumper” has become so widely used in the media that Christians are now adopting it to describe themselves as a way of scorning the elites who look down their noses at Christians generally.

Before pointing this out, Magary mocks Robertson this way:

“Even though he’s in the far corner of the room, Phil dominates the house. There are times when he doesn’t look you in the eye while he’s speaking—he looks just off to the side of you, as if Jesus were standing nearby, holding a stack of cue cards. Everyone else in the room just stares at his phone, or at the TV, or holds side conversations as Phil preaches.”

As disgusted as Christians, conservatives, and Duck Dynasty fans may be with A&E’s treatment of Robertson, let’s consider this jewel of mockery by Magary on behalf of GQ magazine. This isn’t merely an attack on Robertson, but on every Christian who is guided by faith.  Magary’s scornful, scowling article shows Robertson in the very light that his magazine’s readers have come to expect.  Later in the article, however, Magary provides the Robertson quote that will rile the left endlessly:

“For the sake of the Gospel, it was worth it,” Phil tells me. “All you have to do is look at any society where there is no Jesus. I’ll give you four: Nazis, no Jesus. Look at their record. Uh, Shintos? They started this thing in Pearl Harbor. Any Jesus among them? None. Communists? None. Islamists? Zero. That’s eighty years of ideologies that have popped up where no Jesus was allowed among those four groups. Just look at the records as far as murder goes among those four groups.”

All of this was far too much for the leftists at A&E.  They’re a politically correct outlet, and Robertson’s off-show remarks are far too insensitive in their view, and attacked their general philosophical slant. If only he were a Muslim…

Fans aren’t happy with this suspension either, and the backlash is growing, as a new Facebook page that has already garnered nearly seven-hundred-thousand likes, and there are other pages on the social networking site having similar results.  While there can be no expectation of “free speech” on a network one doesn’t own, this sort of cultural brow-beating is standard fare in leftist circles.  In his contract, there may be language prohibiting him from making such statements publicly, in which case he is bound by the terms of the contract, but here’s the real problem for A&E: While they are free to suspend him if his contract allows it, they are also bound to bear the consequences in the marketplace.  If the market recoils against them, and if they find even more people joining the fray of public discourse against them, it’s all their problem.  If the move gains the network market-share, then it’s all their benefit.

With that said, let’s consider what had been Robertson’s “infraction,” according to A&E.  Robertson dared to state publicly in an interview that he held as sins those things set forth in 1 Corinthians 6:9-11. Indeed, he then explained his own orientation. From the Chicago Tribune:

“Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there. Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men,” he told reporter Drew Magary. “Don’t be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers—they won’t inherit the kingdom of God. Don’t deceive yourself. It’s not right.”

“It seems like, to me, a vagina—as a man—would be more desirable than a man’s anus. That’s just me. I’m just thinking: There’s more there! She’s got more to offer. I mean, come on, dudes! You know what I’m saying? But hey, sin: It’s not logical, my man. It’s just not logical.”

Now that the homosexual lobby is descending upon Robertson, one might wonder why leftist groups and others sympathetic to the homosexual lobby have all the courage in the world to take on Christians at every turn, but never seem to muster the same courage when dealing with Muslims.  If, rather than a show titled “Duck Dynasty,” and being a Christian man named Phil Robertson, this had instead been a show named “Kamel Kingdom,” centered around a Wahhabist family headed by a man named Muhammed Atta on the Arabian peninsula, the whining cowards at the A&E network wouldn’t have dared to suspend the patriarch.  Not a chance.  Christians are easy targets, after all.  They’ve become accustomed to being culturally attacked, and desensitized to being harangued publicly for their views. They do not fight back, generally speaking.  Muslims are another story.  In fact, A&E may have actually blocked the mention of Jesus on Duck Dynasty in order to avoid offending Muslims. Watch this video with Phil Robertson:

There’s a lesson in all of this for those who happen to pay attention: Christians may temporarily blow up your phone lines, but they won’t blow up your building, and executives at the A&E network know that too well.  They can stand to tolerate a few days of melted phone lines, but once the issue fades in prominence, they’ll go on as before.  The leftist media culture is rife with bullies who are willing to pick on faithful Christians, but won’t say the first word in opposition to radical Islam, or even acknowledge its existence, lest they find themselves the target of a fatwa. I’m not suggesting that Christians should strap suicide vests on their bodies and run into the A&E Network’s headquarters, but I think this helps to demonstrate that Christians, who mistakenly turn the other cheek until they’re beaten into submission.  Christians don’t fight back.  They have been taught that only the “meek” shall inherit the Earth, not understanding the real meaning of Matthew 5:5.  It was an admonition to submit to God.  It was not a demand to lay supinely in acceptance of any torment in the offing from all comers.

Christians and conservatives must begin to understand the affliction that they too readily bear. Consisting in part of the radical left’s tireless war against American culture, this is a real campaign being fought daily.  The left,  radical Islam, the associated and cohort groups all bear ill will against traditional Christian values, and American ideals and traditions in general, either to subvert them or erase them from our nation.  A&E’s fault in all of this lies in the fact that they are more afraid of people who do not regularly watch their network than of those who routinely tune to see Phil Robertson and his family.  A&E is more interested in portraying the Robertson clan as backwoods bayou bumpkins than in showing a God-fearing family that accepts the teachings of their Bible.  They don’t want to offend  Muslims, homosexuals, or anyone else in the process, unless they happen to be capitalists, Christians, and/or conservatives, in which case it is not merely acceptable but entirely intentional. Christians and conservatives must begin to make their voices heard in unison, because it’s their culture that is under fire. The time for cheek-turning should have passed, and it’s high time conservative leaders step forward to say as much.

Thankfully, some already have. (Sarah Palin here, Ted Cruz here, and Bobby Jindal here.) Now it’s your turn. As the rabid left seeks to turn the GQ Robertson interview into the 2013 version of Rush Limbaugh’s Sandra Fluke remarks, conveniently taking the focus away from Obama-care, it’s time for conservatives, particularly Christians, to understand all of these things as a coordinated attack against them.  While A&E is a shameless trollop acting on behalf of the general leftist ideology, they are performing a service to Barack Obama that money could scarcely buy. Obama-care’s massive failures are sliding from the headlines, and this changing of the subject over a TV show will permit them to carry on.  The truth for conservatives in general and Christians in particular is that the left doesn’t fear you.  They see you as having been de-fanged by your own ethos, and they use your most generous virtues against you.  It’s time to see them for the monsters they are, speak out at will, and make all of your purchasing decisions accordingly.  It’s time for them to fear your market power if they will fear nothing else.  It’s time for them to fear you at the polls if they will see no other threat from your number.  It’s long past the time for all real Americans to roar and I don’t care if the statist left sneers at that description.  The time for silence on all fronts is over. They need to fear the continuance of their Jihad against us.

Editors Note: The truth about A&E and its show is that it was never intended to capture the audience it now enjoys, but was instead meant as a vehicle by which to mock Christians and conservatives.  Once it backfired and became a wildly successful show, they had to find a way to bury it culturally. For what other possible reason would they place beeps and bleeps in the audio track to cover profanity that never occurred, as per Robertson’s testimony in the video above?  They wanted to reinforce a stereotype.

Update: As of this hour, the boycott A&E page on Facebook now has over 1.1 Million likes.

Debunking Stupid Ideas in Mainstream Media

Tuesday, December 10th, 2013

Bloviating Zone

Seldom is there a shortage of stupid, insipid, vapid ideas in the mainstream media, but lately, it’s coming from every direction.  I was watching the idiot at 8pm(Eastern) on the diminishing network that is Fox News, when he promoted an upcoming segment featuring Michele Bachmann(R-MN.)  The segment has not yet played, and I’m not really interested in anything this perpetual TV dipstick has to say, so I was not surprised at the vacuous formulation of his segment, based on a recent McClatchy-Marist poll: “Why are the American people still more dis-satisfied with Republicans than Democrats?”  Let me suggest an answer that refuses to evade the obvious, irrespective of what Bachmann may or may not say in response, and howsoever the bloviating 8pm-er may otherwise characterize it.  It’s really a simple math problem, and it’s time we ask goof-balls like O’Reilly to understand mathematics. There is one reason Republicans are doing more poorly in Congressional approval polls, and it is not because they’re not moderate enough.  In fact, it’s just the opposite.

Various surveys tell us that roughly 20-25 percent of the populace considers itself liberal.  As much as 42 percent consider themselves conservative.  The rest  consider themselves mushy moderates and independents.  Let me suggest that we break this up into a simpler math question: If 33 percent of respondents approve of Democrats in Congress, that is roughly equivalent to the number of avowed liberals and a portion of the “moderates” who are simply embarrassed liberals hoping to maintain some semblance of non-partisan cover.  The rest of the country hates the Democrats, including some actual moderates.  Meanwhile, the same 33 percent can be counted on to hate the Republicans. One might then think that since 40-45 percent of the populace considers themselves conservative, Republicans would gain the benefit.  Actually, it’s not like this at all.  You see, since Republicans register around 25 percent approval, let us then admit that the group most likely to be adding to disapproval of Republicans isn’t the moderates, but instead, the conservatives.  42 percent plus 33 percent equals 75 percent.  While I am confident there will be some instances in which this isn’t precisely true, the obvious answer is that the Democrats are disapproved less because their own core constituents support them relentlessly.  In contrast, conservatives who constitute the core of the Republican constituency are as unhappy with Republicans as liberals are. Only squishy moderates like O’Reilly support Republicans.

This is not difficult math, so simple in fact, that even a mindless dolt like O’Reilly should be able to figure it out. The problem is, however, that it’s only easy to see if one is willing to see it.  O’Reilly isn’t willing to see anything that contradicts the DC orthodoxy. When O’Reilly implies that it’s all because Republicans are too immoderate, he’s evading the truth, because it’s not a truth he wants to purvey.  If the Republicans in Congress were interested in getting a better approval rating, they wouldn’t push ridiculous “bi-partisan” budget deals like the one now being offered by Paul Ryan(R-WI) and his Senate counterpart, the estimable Patty Murray(D-WA.) Conservatives are rightly disgusted with this and other deals, and the explicit unwillingness of Congressional Republicans to fight. 42 percent plus 33 percent equals 75 percent. Mathematical wizardry is not required.  All one needs is a commitment to the simple truth, and that’s something Bill O’Reilly plainly lacks.

(Editor’s Note: Apparently, the math escaped Bachmann too, because her explanation turned out to be that the media is against Republicans, which while true, doesn’t answer the heart of the question.)

Mr. L Sums Up Barack Obama in One Word

Wednesday, October 9th, 2013

On Tuesday, Mr. L had more than a few choice words for Barack “Mugabe” Obama. The nation is becoming understandably angry with Obama, and he’s more than tired  of the dirt-bag politicians who are interested in compromising with Obama and the rest of the statist left.  There’s no point to offering compromise only to be rebuffed by Obama and his henchmen.  Frankly, Rand Paul should know better.  Mr. L gets it right: No more compromise. Another excellent presentation from Mr. L:

You can check out Mr.L’s Tavern here.

Closing Oceans, Furloughing the Almighty – How to Beat the Bully

Saturday, October 5th, 2013

He’s Winning?

One of the lessons most of us managed to learn in confronting bullies early in life is that few things can overcome the power of mockery and ridicule.  The biggest, baddest schoolyard bullies are often overwhelmed when their victims band together and belittle them.  The same rule holds true in politics, and indeed, it’s a standard political approach. Catching politicians eating corn-dogs, or making a mockery of their off-the-cuff comments has been the stuff of political mockery for centuries.  It’s effective because most people like to laugh, particularly at the expense of the high and mighty.  Who on Earth is higher and mightier than a US president?  Who is more open to ridicule than the man who occupies the Oval office?  We conservatives often worry that we’re not “winning” the public opinion because we’re painted as dour or heartless or humorless.  Laugh a little.  This President is affording us every opportunity to prevail as he undertakes every extreme action to enhance the pain of the shutdown for Americans.  Yes, some of it is enraging, but it also speaks to the self-aggrandized view this man holds of himself.  If you want to defeat a despot, mock him.  Ridicule him.  Make him the joke around town.  None are more eligible for this treatment than Barack Hussein Obama.

It’s not as though we don’t have the evidence.  After five days of the government shutdown, during which conservatives have taken to the airwaves to mock and ridicule this preposterous man, questioning his every action in light of his constitutional limits, his daily tracking-poll numbers are falling like a stone.  Conventional wisdom had held that he could not be beaten, and that Republicans would take all the blame, but that hasn’t been demonstrated by the tracking polls.  With every day this goes on, and with every joke that is told, Obama is seeing his approval numbers dip to all-time lows.  If you want to know how to make a lame-duck of this President, it really comes down to credibility.  After Putin humiliated him, and after a month of haughty lectures and accusations leveled at Republicans, he’s beginning to sound like an excuse factory.  Whatever else may be true, the American people are catching on to this.  It’s having an effect on his ability to carry out his threats.  Think of the imagery of 90-year-old veterans at the WWII memorial being greeted with “Barrycades” erected by order of a president that desperate to make his political points.  It’s an open invitation to ridicule.

On Saturday comes the news that Obama has “shut down the oceans,” and people are laughing about it.  On Friday, it was made public that he’s ordered the Pentagon to shut down religious services in military chapels, and Americans emboldened by the zeitgeist begin to proclaim: “Obama is Furloughing G-d.” Now they mock his closure of Mt. Rushmore, asking if he will throw a curtain over it.  Jay Leno asked his audience if they were more scared of the shutdown, or more afraid of it opening back up to uproarious laughter.  The Obama-Reid shutdown is having precisely the opposite effect of what had been intended, and the more ludicrous the President’s actions, the more his approval drops.  He tries to inflict more pain, and Americans are disgusted by it but then go on to laugh in the face of it all.  At every turn, Americans are looking for new and more humorous ways to dismiss this president as the bullying lout he has become.

In social media, particularly on Twitter, the mockery goes on continuously.  It’s having an effect, as each time some shrill leftist makes some idiotic claim on behalf of the administration, they are met with derision and mockery.  The more this happens, the more it becomes difficult for Obama to have the impact he had hoped this shutdown opportunity would present.  Early in the shutdown, the White House insiders whispered that they thought they were winning, and now, even that comment is mocked.  Most of the Republicans in Washington don’t know how to handle this. Their heads are stuck in DC media coverage, and they don’t understand the mixed signals.  From their districts, and in social media, support when they stand firm, while the establishment press insists that they are losing.

Naturally, a few of the smarter ones have instigated or joined in the mockery.  Senator Ted Cruz has tweeted his share of appraisals of the Obama-care roll-out and the Obama-Reid shutdown, and it’s beginning to take a toll.  Republicans questioned Cruz over his strategy during a caucus lunch this week, and the weak-kneed Republicans were bothered and accusatory, suggesting Cruz had “led them into a cul-de-sac” to borrow the phrase.  What their shortsightedness reveals is how out-of-touch they are with the American people.  If they understood the dynamics of our modern culture, they would recognize as has Senator Cruz that the American people are just beginning to engage fully and that they will demand that DC listen to their complaints.  The tide has turned and the momentum is now gathering against the President, and if the surrender-set on Capitol hill would merely join the “Cruzade,” not even the establishment media would be able to rescue the Obama presidency from lame-duck status.

Given what we know about Obama’s designs and intentions, this may be the best way in which to stop him in his tracks. It may be the only way in which Obama-care is finally ejected into the ditch.  What we conservatives can do is to join in the mockery and the ridicule of the bully.  Obama wants to push old men around at the WWII memorial, and at Normandy, and anywhere else he can inflict pain.  He wants to shut down religious services on military bases, and he wants to make the shutdown as painful as possible.  We’re Americans, and we have always known throughout our history how to deal with pain.  We laugh at it when we can muster the humor.  Let us laugh in the face of this dictator-in-waiting, and show him we still know how to overcome bullies.  This man won’t build a wall on our Southern border to keep out illegals, but he’ll throw up “Barrycades” around our treasured memorials?  Such a man deserves all the contempt and ridicule we can muster.

Mark Levin Issues Warning to DC Thugs

Thursday, October 3rd, 2013

In an explosive moment on his Wednesday evening show, radio talk-show host Mark Levin warned the people behind the government shutdown not to mess with the World War II vets at their memorial on the mall in Washington DC.  He’s right: Obama’s thugs are doing his bidding.  There was no reason to put up “Barrycades” around the memorial.  It was funded privately, and there’s generally no security there anyway.  It’s an outdoor site, so one might just as well put up fences around the Capitol steps.  This is simply an attempt to inflict pain on the American people and her veterans who risked all so that moral midgets like the President and his cohorts in Congress could claim some sort of political victory.  Levin warned that he’d bring a half-million people to the memorial if one veteran was harmed or man-handled or arrested.  Levin is right, and we should not permit our public officials to behave like bullies.  Barack Obama is despicable.  We are coming to a time of mass civil disobedience to this would-be emperor, and it’s overdue.  We are Americans, and there’s no reason to accept this from any politician. Here’s the audio, courtesy DailyCaller:

 

Levin is right. There’s no justification for this treatment of men who served their country with honor and distinction. There’s no possible reason to hurt them, or deny them what might be their last opportunity to come to this memorial, except as a shameless political maneuver. This is what has become of the United States of America under Barack Obama. The President should be ashamed.

Barack Obama’s Government Shutdown: He Wants It, He Owns It

Monday, September 30th, 2013

His way or highway…

The media won’t tell you the truth about this, so I’m going to tell you because the American people really ought to know.  Barack Obama is gambling that he will come out of any government shutdown smelling like a rose, but this is not 1995, and the same old playbook will not work.  The media is trying to pull it in that direction, but the simple fact is that Obama isn’t doing so well in opinion polls lately.  The obvious truth is that while Barack Obama is willing to talk with the Iranians, the Syrians, and any number of the world’s dictators, but he will not negotiate with Republicans.  Bill Clinton is encouraging Obama in that direction too, but there’s something different now: In 1995, the US economy was in full recovery from a recession, whereas now, the economy is still barely struggling along.  This time, the American people can sense that something is dreadfully wrong with the direction of the country, and according to a CNN Poll, at least forty-seven percent now believe Obama is acting like a petulant brat.

Naturally, part of this owes to the economy, but part of the problem for Obama and the Democrats is that the American people overwhelmingly dislike his signature legislation, the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obama-care.  American workers are seeing their hours cut, hiring has slowed to a Carter-era rate, and job creation is simply bottoming out.  The young, now told they can remain on their parents’ healthcare until 26 years of age, are finding it impossible to find a job.  “Let’s be clear:” Harry Reid is doing Barack Obama’s bidding, and this entire thing is their contrivance.

The American people do not want government shut down, but neither do the Republicans.  The American people also don’t want Obama-care, and for the most part, neither do Republicans.  For the first time since 2010, the American people have begun to see through the dominant, statist media portrayal of events, and as Bob Woodward observed today, if the economy tanks in part due to a government shutdown or due to Obamacare, nobody will remember Senator Harry Reid or Speaker John Boehner some fifty years on. They will remember Barack Obama and his role, much as nobody remembers the Congress that was around when we fell into the great depression of the 1930s, but everybody remembers Hoover.

I believe that if Republicans find the courage to stand tough, they may get a minor black eye, but they won’t get a broken nose, bruised ribs, and cauliflower ears.  Those will belong to President Obama, and by association the Democrats. If they’re not careful, the American people may discover what is really behind Obama’s thinking.

 

David Gregory Bites Off More Than He Can Chew With Ted Cruz

Monday, September 30th, 2013

Cruzing

On Sunday Morning, David Gregory interviewed Senator Ted Cruz on NBC’s Meet the Press. Gregory questioned Cruz for several minutes, and what became clear from the outset was that it was Gregory’s aim to somehow trap the Texas Senator.  Every question was formulated from the viewpoint of a Democrat.  Every contention of Gregory was constructed to obscure the trainwreck that is Obama-care, or to shield Democrats from blame.  At no point did Gregory attempt to understand the Senator, so that Cruz was obliged to make his case clearly despite Gregory.  What Gregory tried to conceal most of all is who has been inflexible, and absolutist, and who has been unwilling to compromise.  As usual, the Democrats, led by Harry Reid in the Senate and Barack Obama generally haven’t been willing to listen to any complaints from the American people, while they’ve been willing to do the bidding of big corporations, granting waivers, delays, and carve-outs under Obama-care.  This interview is a study in how to go over the heads of a hostile press directly to the American people.

Senator Cruz is absolutely correct: If government shuts down, it will be because Democrats, particularly Senator Reid and President Obama, have been unwilling to listen to the American people.

Levin’s Proposal May Be Our Last Hope

Saturday, August 17th, 2013

Given the direction of our republic into complete cultural, economic, and political collapse, it may be that drastic circumstances must call for equally drastic measures.  On Friday night, Hannity aired a one-hour special with a studio audience on Fox News Channel that featured Mark Levin and his latest book: The Liberty Amendments -Restoring the American Republic.  Hannity put up Levin’s proposed constitutional amendments for review by the esteemed studio audience, but the first matter to be examined was Levin’s proposed method of amending the constitution: Rather than wait for Congress to repair itself, a hope based entirely in futile notions about the ability of the American people to somehow force the change, he instead argues that Article V of the constitution already provides the means by which to amend it without the approval or consent of Congress or any other branch of the federal government.  He is proposing an amending convention, convened by two-thirds of the states, with any produced amendments requiring ratification by three-fourths of the states.

For those who are somewhat confused about all of this, I would refer you to Article V of the US Constitution that provides for the two legitimate procedures by which to amend the constitution:

“The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress; Provided that no Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article; and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate.”(emphasis added.)

Bluntly, two-thirds of the legislatures of the states can initiate this process.  Three-fourths have the ability to ratify them, just as if the Congress had proposed them.  The difficulty of this process alone makes it entirely unlikely that the process might become a so-called “runaway convention.”  As Levin responded on this point when asked during the course of the Hannity show, the simple fact is that there is nothing revolutionary about this process except that we, the people, have never initiated it, and it could be initiated at any time.  Perhaps it is time we start.

Some of the comments on my last article on this subject seemed to raise the same objections, and while I understand the reservations, the simple truth of the matter is that if the statists existed in sufficient numbers that they could hijack this process, they would have initiated it themselves some time ago.  There are clear dangers, but I think what Levin has here accomplished is marvelous for one particular reason, as became clear in a question from Breitbart’s Joel Pollak during the course of the show: The eleven amendments Levin proposes do not confront any political issue in particular, apart from perhaps taxation.  Instead, they are all structural and procedural issues with respect to the federal government.  Rather than attack a particular issue where the federal government can be shown to be out of control, they each confront defects in the original document, or in one case, reverse a defect imposed by previous amendments.

In focusing so tightly on the constructs of our federal government, Levin avoids the pitfalls of specific divisive political issues, leaving them to be resolved by virtue of a political process amended and restored to the framers’ intentions.  In this sense, the proposal is at once elegant and simple.  It is elegant inasmuch as it addresses the central failings of our national political process and the aggregation of power in the federal bureaucracy, and it inserts new forms of protections against a runaway federal establishment that imposes law and regulation with no effective check by those it purports to serve.  The reversals born of such a slate of amendments would be slow but intractable, as power would necessarily begin to shift from the central government to the states.  His proposal is simple because it relies on a process that is already part of our constitutional system, and need not be invented, nor rely on the approval of the federal establishment that would naturally resist it.

One of the criticisms that was raised had been about the repeal of the seventeenth amendment.  Terry Jeffrey of CNSNews.com asked if returning the selection of Senators to the states’ legislatures wouldn’t hurt the civil engagement of the populace.  My answer would be somewhat different than Dr. Levin’s, because I would tend to consider it this way: Which elections need the most bolstering in terms of civic participation?  National or state and local?  I would suspect that if electing one’s state representatives and senators would be crucial in electing members of the US Senate, interest in state legislative elections would be certain to grow.  I might also point out that in many respects, this might well serve conservatives most of all, since it is we who tend to show up reliably in off-year and state/local elections. The so-called “low information voter” does not.  To the degree this would draw more to the process, it may also help reduce the total number of such uninformed voters by engaging them in their state governments, thereby lifting the veil of ignorance behind which they may now suffer.

Indeed, one could argue that the seventeenth amendment had been contrary to the framers’ intent, not merely because it repealed their process, but because of its net result in muting the states as voices in the federal government. It is fitting then that even in Article V, the point is demonstrated by its closing clause:

“…no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate.”(emphasis mine.)

It could be said hereby that the seventeenth amendment deprived all the States of any form of suffrage in the US Senate.  After the seventeenth amendment, States effectively have no direct suffrage of any form, thus rendering them voiceless in the federal government that had been their creation.

Naturally, there were ten amendments more than the repeal of the seventeenth discussed, including an interesting proposal that would permit the overturn of federal regulations by the states.  There were also term limits for Congress, and there were term limits for the federal judiciary.  There was even a method by which the states could overturn Supreme Court decisions.  What all of these proposed amendments share is a singular focus on the construction and process of the federal government.  That is a brilliant approach to reform that would have the effect of more slowly and carefully reversing our course.

I’ve given a great deal of thought to Levin’s proposal, as I have proposed some of these same ideas in some form in the past. As Levin points out, the Congress and the Courts, never mind a runaway executive have no reason whatever to reform themselves.  If they are to be reformed, we will need to be the instigators. This then ought to be our mission, the effort of our time.  If we are to be blunt about our nation’s prospects on its current course, it must be admitted that the future looks bleak. None should think this is a project that will be done in a year or in an election cycle.  The fact is that this process begins with local and state politics. It means getting our state legislatures in shape so that the delegates they would send must be of a mind to author the kinds of amendments that Levin proposes here.

I realize there are risks implicit in any move to convene delegates for the purpose of amending the constitution, but the simple fact is that the constitution has been amended in a de facto methodology by the results of extra-constitutional rulings of the court, outrageous legislative initiatives in Congress, and the tyrannical fiat of executive whimsy that threaten every right of the American people.  We are already nearing the precipice from which there will be no return, where plummeting into the abyss will be merely a matter of inertia.  If George Mason insisted on this second procedure as the last effective rampart against federal tyranny, then I say we must exercise it.  The only alternative is almost too terrible to imagine, and violence will be the only feasible outcome.  There are many who make bold oaths, explaining that they would be happy with that occasion, but I wonder how much of that is bravado.  Perhaps it is easier for some to make idle pronouncements than to stand forth and make serious efforts aimed at avoiding that sort of catastrophe.

When I consider even the simple repeal of the seventeenth amendment, I realize Levin is right.  Such an amendment could never pass a Senate now subservient only to the Washington DC establishment, so that to restore the voice of the states, it will require their insistence and instigation.  If you missed this episode of Hannity, I hope FNC will make more of it available. Here is the opening clip:

 


Have We Become Too Lazy to Save Ourselves?

Saturday, August 3rd, 2013

Too Tired to Try?

When I think about Mark Levin’s forthcoming book entitled The Liberty Amendments (sure to be a bestseller,) I become a bit frustrated.  Among conservatives, what I hear most often in thoughts expressed about the book is either that his proposal is simply too hard, or that it’s too dangerous a prospect to seek to amend the constitution through the convention process detailed in Article V of the constitution.  What I perceive among conservatives is a collective sigh and shrug, in admission of slinking retreat from the battlefield.  I understand that frustration, and I know too well why so many conservatives feel like surrendering, so thoroughly exhausted from fighting what seems a losing battle. On the other hand, I must ask my brethren if it’s wise to relent so easily.  After all, if we’re serious about saving the country, it’s going to have a cost in dollars, sweat, and sadly, perhaps some blood.  If you have any illusions about it, you’re not really in this fight.  What conservatives should recognize is that Levin’s approach may be all that can avoid civil conflict, and that avoidance will lead to subjugation or civil war. Some may think it is impossible or even suicidal to amend the constitution by the convention process, but we mustn’t let fatigue, fear or sloth stop us.

Although the book has not yet been released, Levin has discussed the broad concepts involved on his daily radio talk-show.  He’s even made the first chapter available for download on his website.  Some callers seem enthusiastic, but there is another group of callers who seem somewhat confused, or even to be overwhelmed with misinformation with respect to “opening up the constitution” either to gross re-write or outright replacement.  While amendments that are broad are certainly possible, what must be understood is that under Article V, any such amendments would need to be ratified by thirty-eight of fifty states before being adopted as part of our constitution.  With that sort of broad-based approval being required, it’s hard to imagine something tyrannical or fundamentally anti-American gaining traction.  Impossible?  Strictly, no, but with millions upon millions of watchful Americans, it’s hard to conceive of the process being hijacked in such a manner.  While it is easy to understand such fears, it’s not very likely that due cause for them would materialize.

Instead, most fears I’ve heard expressed on the subject are born of a general fatigue and frustration, inasmuch as most Americans so-concerned do not believe anything fruitful would be obtained from such a process, or that such a process would ever be permitted to come to pass by the political powers running Washington DC.  My fellow conservatives point to the basic sloth and lack of political study or engagement of most of their fellow citizens as evidence for the cause of a presumed failure-to-launch for such a movement.  It’s hard to disagree with this pessimistic view of the efficacy of any such effort given the obvious problem we have in this country when one considers even voting turn-out in national elections: Most people don’t want to be troubled with politics, and will simply obey whatever laws are passed by whichever politicians manage to pass them, irrespective of their effects.

One of the reasons for doubt among so many conservatives is an intense understanding of how hard it has become to penetrate the veil of pop-culture distractions behind which most Americans live their daily lives.  It has been a lament of my own for years past counting that too many Americans are more concerned about trivial, inconsequential matters like television shows or sporting events.  Many Americans reorganize their lives around such things, but despite having the intellectual capacity to comprehend all the statistics of sports, or to track the endless permutations of reality television, most Americans simply can’t be bothered with the work of self-government.   How often do I read such laments in the comments on this site?

The trouble then may be us.  We are obviously too interested in the direction of our country, if judged by the standards of so many of our countrymen.  What we must ask is if there is any way to capture and hold their attention for such a monumental task.  Such an undertaking would not be likely accomplished in a span less than a decade, because we would first be required to put in place state legislators in sufficient numbers who would carry this forward.  The simple truth is that for any of this to happen, we must put it into action.  We, who have continued to struggle as the country’s economic beasts of burden, dragging the nation along despite more outrageous loads being heaped upon us must finally decide whether we will be crushed under this cargo or instead unload it by a conscious effort to do away with it.

I no longer argue with leftists.  I find that they are as intransigent in their opinions as any brick wall, but what I have discovered is that there exists a vast swath of America’s population that simply doesn’t care.  For now.  As the country begins to devolve and ultimately dissolve, the statists will become increasingly desperate to hold it together, and this will lead them to inflict more and more outrageous measures.  As they do, the American people will begin to wake up, and we will need to be there, ready to welcome them into the fold.  Nothing drives political involvement like self-interest.  Why do the Democrats concoct phony wars on women, wars on minorities, and wars on the environment?  It is all aimed at capturing votes through a perceived self-interest.  Knowing this, we must be prepared to gather such of our people as we can in order to gather steam as the opportunity presents.

As Levin has explained, there is no need to fear the Article V amendment convention he proposes.  George Mason insisted upon it as the last peaceful recourse against a despotic Congress.  When the two parties now openly collude, Mason’s gift to us may yet be the salvation of our nation if we have the requisite diligence to pursue it. It would be simple to walk away and await our doom, accepting what may come with grim resolve, but I must ask my fellow conservatives if that is the fate we will accept.  If it is true as seems to be the case that the Republicans now collude in the growing despotism of an ever-larger, entrenched surveillance and welfare state, commanding and controlling our lives, Levin’s approach may be our sole remaining peaceful opportunity.  I don’t know if the sloth born of complacency will stop us from saving the country, but it shouldn’t stop conservatives from trying.  It may be all that remains in the kit.  We can take the country back, and the wisdom of our founders provided us one last method. I’d urge readers to consider Levin’s book with the diligence it deserves, equal at least to his supreme diligence in writing it.

Sarah Palin’s “Redneck Whiteboard”(Video)

Saturday, July 27th, 2013

Redneck Whiteboard

I take some knocks from a few of the haughty sorts of Republican who believe the conservative base of the GOP mustn’t be trusted with leadership. In their view, riffraff like me are simply “too extreme” (read: consistent) to be taken seriously.  Their shills head out onto to television to offer the best thinking of the establishment’s intelligentsia, but despite their theorizing, and their whiteboards, they simply don’t understand why the average conservative can’t see things their way.  One of the things that causes some eye-rolling amongst the “elites” in my own locality is to mention my ongoing, unwavering support of Sarah Palin.  In their view, she epitomizes the sort of conservatism they abhor: Honest, plain-spoken, and trustworthy fighters who tend not to bite their tongues.  In this context, as the eyes roll, I hear in response: “Oh, that makes perfect sense.”  On Greta’s show on FoxNews last night, Governor Palin displayed these simple virtues that make GOP establishment hacks roll their eyes.  On full display was a white envelope,  covered in the names of scandals surrounding Barack Obama.  In open mockery of Karl “Tokyo” Rove, she called it her “redneck whiteboard.” Here’s the video:

One can only imagine how this went over within the confines of the Republican establishment’s inner circle.  Gov. Palin’s plain-spoken truth on the matter is why despite the eye-rolling of the Republican elite, the conservative base of the party supports the former Alaska governor.  Her message is much too rare in GOP circles, and while the establishment in Washington DC helps to delay and obfuscate on Barack Obama’s behalf, the truth out in fly-over country is that the American people want the answers on all those issues listed on Palin’s “redneck whiteboard,” and despite the assistance of certain Republicans in helping to cover them, eventually, we’re going to have at the truth.  One might run out the clock on this administration, but one cannot run out the clock on the truth.  Governor Palin rightly points out that the 2008 McCain campaign failed to make an issue of any of the negative material swirling around Barack Obama, ultimately forbidding her from raising questions about his personal history on the campaign trail.  How can anybody be expected to win when they’re fighting with one hand tied?  Governor Palin is right: It’s time to deal with these scandals, and Barack Obama should be ashamed for pretending they are all phony, when it’s clear there is so much more to these matters.

President Obama’s Absurd Distraction

Saturday, July 20th, 2013

Pay Attention to ME!

On Friday, President Obama provided an outlandish distraction intended to restart the media circus over the verdict in the Zimmerman trial.  It was contrived, planned, and perfectly concocted to capture the nation’s attention.  Obama plays the narcissist when he needs controversy, so it’s not particularly surprising to see him step into this role, don the virtual hoodie, and proclaim that he is Trayvon, or that Trayvon is him, or whatever crass proclamation he was attempting to make.  It succeeded to the extent that from the moment he made this infantile, ludicrous statement, few in media have talked about anything else.  The Zimmerman trial story had been losing ground as the lead story all week, so that the nation had begun to return its attention to more pressing matters like the IRS scandal, and immigration, all of which had begun to resurface as the furor over Zimmerman was subsiding.  With this fatuous remark, Obama again succeeded.  It was Friday.  By now, it’s well-known that this administration always puts out any bad news on Friday.  Which bad news was this constructed to hide?  Which government action was this intended to conceal? When Obama pulls a stunt like this, we should be reading  the back pages and sections of our newspapers, or scanning deep down the columns on Drudge, because this was purely a stunt, and so far, it’s working.

Like most of you, I am a busy person.  This week has seen me work an insane number of hours, so that any thoughts about blogging died in exhaustion as my head finally met the pillow at the ends of my days.  That is the nature of my work, and the chief reason for my absences from this blog.  In that environment, I have occasions to hear news while I work, but not watch it, or read it, so that it comes in snatches as snatch can.  At the top and bottom of each hour, there is a small segment of news on radio, so that when I hear that the President’s remark is consuming almost all the available time but for a traffic report, I know he’s succeeding in grabbing all the attention of the nation.  In this sense, since most conservatives work, and since that means that most of them listen to the radio for some portion of their news, what Obama accomplished on Friday was to squeeze out all the room for any other news.  He “sucked out all the oxygen,” as some would prefer to say.  Let me now take the time to offer you a little more, now that you have breathing room to discover a sample of what the President may be hiding with this distraction.

Consider the embarrassing spectacle the President doesn’t want you to consider, as the city of Detroit files bankruptcy only 8 months after he took campaign trail credit for having saved it.  It’s gotten so bad in the Detroit area that suburbs are now talking about building a wall to keep people from the crime-ridden city from easily invading their own communities.   State officials in Michigan are now arguing over whether it is even constitutional for the city to file for bankruptcy protection.  While this may not be enough by itself to justify the President’s unseemly distraction circus, it certainly adds to the picture.  There are worse things he seeks to hide.

Maybe Obama wants to give a little cover to his golfing partner, John Boehner, who is now pushing the House version of the bill to include the “Dream Act” so as to legalize the children of illegal immigrants who brought their whole family into the US “in the shadows.”  After all, that’s the apparent purpose of Beohner and establishment Republicans in Congress: To act as a fifth column for the Democrats.  While we’re watching Obama make an ass of himself on television, they’re still trying to figure out how to shove immigration reform down our throat.  “Watch this hand…ignore the other…”  Also in the House, the Republicans are fighting among themselves about the Agriculture bill and therefore, the food-stamps budget. Once again, establishment Republicans don’t want to cut very deeply, while conservatives want to make substantial cuts to the overgrown program.

It is also possible that Obama wanted to draw your attention away from the colossal disaster that is Obama-care.  On Friday, lost in the coverage of his remarks is the injunction issued by a federal court against the enforcement of the contraception mandate against Hobby Lobby.

On immigration, it’s clear that Republican members of the Gang-of-Tr8ors didn’t know that their bill permits people to forge up to two passports without legal jeopardy.  First Rubio.  Then Juan McRino. These two RINO hacks should be embarrassed, but they’re not.  After all, the whole nation’s attention has shifted to the foolish remarks of a carnival barker of a President.

Of course, maybe the President wants you to ignore this story of an embarrassing voter registration in Washington DC, not because it is his, but because it’s a valid voter registration in the District of Columbia, using the name with which he registered for school in Indonesia as a child, with the address of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue as the registrant’s address. It’s not so much that this registration has all that much to do with the President himself, but that it’s one further indication of why we need voter ID.  It exposes the degree to which vote fraud is prevalent in our major cities, and throughout the country.  Being the beneficiary of such fraud in most cases, I doubt he wants to talk about this.

With all the scandals over the IRS, Benghazi, and one-hundred lesser issues, and with the looming embarrassment of the crisis that will be Obama-care’s implementation, never mind the attempt by Obama and the Democrat’s fifth column in the Congress to put “immigration reform” over on the American people, there is little doubt that President Obama wants to talk about something… anything… else. One could look at market and economic news for more reasons to change the subject.  One analyst is predicting “Dow 5000,” and as frightening as that may seem, consider that the rate of jobs growth has continued to slow.

With all of this and more going on in domestic news, it’s clear that the President has ever reason to want to change the subject, or keep us focused on highly emotional, divisive topics.  It’s part of his governing philosophy to keep us running in circles while he pulls the virtual hoodie over his head.  It’s what he does, and all the scoundrels in government around the country, but particularly in Washington DC love it, because while we’re watching his circus act, we’re not looking at them.