Wednesday, February 22, 2017
Here, at Amazon, Today's Deals.
Also, Biofreeze Pain Relieving Gel - 4 Ounce Tube - Pack of 4.
And, AmazonBasics Apple Certified Lightning to USB Cable - 6 Feet (1.8 Meters) - White.
BONUS: Nick Adams, Retaking America: Crushing Political Correctness.
At USA Today, "Homeland Security unveils sweeping plan to deport undocumented immigrants."
And at Blazing Cat Fur, "Marine Le Pen Refuses to Cover Herself for Muslim Poobah."
At Amazon, Tom Nichols, The Death of Expertise: The Campaign Against Established Knowledge and Why it Matters.
I'm telling you, the literature on Native Americans is among the most radical scholarship you'll find.
FWIW, at Amazon, Audra Simpson, Mohawk Interruptus: Political Life Across the Borders of Settler States.
Professor Simpson's posted a link to the book's introduction on her faculty homepage.
Here, None Dare Call it Treason.
I have a copy. It's not "fake news."
A 1964 book claiming that communists had infiltrated all levels of government was that era's version of fake news https://t.co/V1K2wG4uCp— NYT Metro Desk (@NYTMetro) January 11, 2017
Tuesday, February 21, 2017
Meanwhile, here's VDH, "Seven Days in February":
Trumps’ critics, left and right, aim to bring about the cataclysm they predicted.It's sickening.
A 1964 political melodrama, Seven Days in May, envisioned a futuristic (1970s) failed military cabal that sought to sideline the president of the United States over his proposed nuclear-disarmament treaty with the Soviets.
Something far less dramatic but perhaps as disturbing as Hollywood fiction played out this February.
The Teeth-Gnashing of Deep Government
Currently, the political and media opponents of Donald Trump are seeking to subvert his presidency in a manner unprecedented in the recent history of American politics. The so-called resistance among EPA federal employees is trying to disrupt Trump administration reform; immigration activists promise to flood the judiciary to render executive orders inoperative.
Intelligence agencies had earlier leaked fake news briefings about the purported escapades of President-elect Trump in Moscow — stories that were quickly exposed as politically driven concoctions. Nearly one-third of House Democrats boycotted the Inauguration. Celebrities such as Ashley Judd and Madonna shouted obscenities to crowds of protesters; Madonna voiced her dreams of Trump’s death by saying she’d been thinking a lot about blowing up the White House.
But all that pushback was merely the clownish preliminary to the full-fledged assault in mid February.
Career intelligence officers leaked their own transcripts of a phone call that National Security Advisor–designate Michael Flynn had made to a Russian official.The media charge against Flynn was that he had nefariously talked to higher-ups in Russia before he took office. Obama-administration officials did much the same, before Inauguration Day 2009, and spoke with Syrian, Iranian, and Russian counterparts. But they faced no interference from the outgoing Bush administration.
No doubt the designated security officials of most incoming administrations do not wait until being sworn in to sound out foreign officials. Most plan to reset the policies of their predecessors. The question, then, arises: Why were former Obama-administration appointees or careerist officials tapping the phone calls of an incoming Trump designate (and Trump himself?) and then leaking the tapes to their pets in the press? For what purpose?
Indeed, Trump’s own proposed outreach to Russia so far is not quite of the magnitude of Obama’s in 2009, when the State Department staged the red-reset-button event to appease Putin; at the time, Russia was getting set to swallow the Crimea and all but absorb Eastern Ukraine. Trump certainly did not approve the sale of some 20 percent of North American uranium holdings to Russian interests, in the quid pro quo fashion that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton did, apparently in concert with Bill Clinton and the Clinton Foundation — and to general indifference of both the press and the intelligence community.
In addition, the Wall Street Journal reported last week that career intelligence officers have decided to withhold information from the president, on the apparent premise that he is unfit, in their view, to receive it. If true, that disclosure would mean that elements of the federal government are now actively opposing the duly elected president of the United States. That chilling assessment gains credence from the likelihood that the president’s private calls to Mexican and Australian heads of state were likewise recorded, and selected segments were leaked to suggest that Trump was either trigger-happy or a buffoon.
Oddly, in early January, Senator Charles Schumer had essentially warned Trump that he would pay for his criticism of career intelligence officials. In an astounding shot across his bow, which was followed up by an onslaught in February, Schumer said: “Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you. . . . So even for a practical, supposedly hard-nosed businessman, he’s being really dumb to do this.”
Schumer was evidently not disturbed about rogue intelligence agencies conspiring to destroy a shared political enemy — the president of the United States. What surprised him was how naïve Trump was in not assessing the anti-constitutional forces arrayed against him.
The elite efforts to emasculate the president have sometimes taken on an eerie turn. The publisher-editor of the German weekly magazine Zeit raised the topic on German television of killing Trump to end the “Trump catastrophe.” So did British Sunday Times columnist India Knight, who tweeted, “The assassination is taking such a long time.” A former Obama Pentagon official, Rosa Brooks, recently mused about theoretical ways to remove Trump, including a military coup, should other avenues such as impeachment or medically forced removal fail: “The fourth possibility is one that until recently I would have said was unthinkable in the United States of America: a military coup, or at least a refusal by military leaders to obey certain orders.”
The Atlantic now darkly warns that Trump is trying to create an autocracy. Former Weekly Standard editor in chief Bill Kristol suggested in a tweet that if he faced a choice (and under what surreal circumstances would that happen?) between the constitutionally, democratically elected president and career government officials’ efforts to thwart or remove him, he would come down on the side of the revolutionary, anti-democratic “deep state”: “Obviously strongly prefer normal democratic and constitutional politics. But if it comes to it [emphasis added], prefer the deep state to the Trump state.” No doubt some readers interpreted that as a call to side with anti-constitutional forces against an elected U.S. president.
Hollywood stars such as Meryl Streep equate the president with brownshirts and assorted fascists. A CNN reporter announced that Trump was Hitlerian; another mused about his plane’s crashing. Prominent conservative legal scholar Richard Epstein recently called for Trump to resign after less than a month in office, largely on grounds that Trump’s rhetoric is unbridled and indiscreet — although Epstein cited no indictable or impeachable offenses that would justify the dispatch of a constitutionally elected president. Earlier, Republican columnists David Frum and Jennifer Rubin had theorized that the 25th Amendment might provide a way to remove Trump from office as unfit to serve. The New Republic published an unfounded theory, based on no empirical evidence, alleging that Trump suffers from neurosyphilis and thus is mentally not up to his office.
Former president Barack Obama — quite unlike prior presidents Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, and George W. Bush, who all refrained from attacking their successors — is now reportedly ready to join the efforts of a well-funded political action committee to undermine the Trump presidency...
I don't recognize American politics anymore. I don't recognize my country anymore.
But thank goodness for decent, clear-thinking people like VDH.
At Amazon, Today's Deals.
And, Amazon Echo - Black.
BONUS: Robert M. Utley, Frontiersmen in Blue: The United States Army and the Indian, 1848-1865.
Also, Bernard Bailyn, The Origins of American Politics.
Armour of a cuirasse du carabinier holed by a cannonball at the battle of Waterloo pic.twitter.com/TBJ7rGPIVf— History In Pictures (@historyepics) January 15, 2017
This is a French cuirass, a breastplate worn as body armour by French cavalry. The hole is from a British cannonball that smashed through the unlucky soldier’s chest. The Waterloo campaign was the first occasion that British troops found themselves face to face with Napoleon’s armoured cavalry, whose cuirasses and metal helmets made them a daunting foe.More.
Yet as the British would discover, even these armoured troopers were by no means invincible as this breastplate brings home with shocking force.
“I always liked my name, until Amazon gave it to a robot.” https://t.co/w5mG5rsj0A— Wall Street Journal (@WSJ) January 27, 2017
“Alexa, stop!” Joanne Sussman screamed in her living room.
Immediately, the computer living inside her Amazon Echo speaker stopped playing her favorite music station. Simultaneously, Mrs. Sussman’s 24-year-old daughter, Alexa, froze on the stairs.
“What, mom? I’m taking the laundry down,” human Alexa shouted back. “What do you need?”
“I always liked my name, until Amazon gave it to a robot,” says Alexa Sussman, a recent New York University graduate who works in marketing.
The artificial-intelligence invasion is upon us, in the form of disembodied personal assistants we can give orders to, query and, in some cases, try to converse with. In hopes of getting us used to our new artificially intelligent family members, the technology companies behind them have given the machines mostly female names to go with their soothing voices.
Apple Inc. picked “Siri.” Microsoft Corp. chose “Cortana.” ( Alphabet Inc.’s Google opted to keep its software nonhuman, calling it “Assistant.”) Amazon.com Inc.’s choice, as it happens, was the 39th most popular girl’s name in the U.S. in 2006. That means in some homes the plan has backfired: The effort to make a gadget more humanlike has earned it human enemies.
In the Sussmans’ household in Levittown, N.Y., the confusion cuts both ways. Last week, when human Alexa’s father, Dean, asked her to grab some water from the kitchen, Amazon’s Alexa wanted to help, too. “Amazon’s choice for water is Fiji Natural Artesian Water, pack of 24. It’s $27.27, including tax. Would you like to buy it?”
When he told his daughter to move the living-room chair, Amazon’s Alexa yelped, “Ready to pair!” Robo-Alexa had a command for Mr. Sussman himself: “Go to the Bluetooth devices on your mobile device.”
The microphones in the $180 Amazon Echo and the smaller $50 Echo Dot are always listening for “Alexa,” which is their default “wake word,” the phrase causing it to start paying attention to commands. Amazon lets users change the wake word to “Echo,” “Amazon,” or, starting this week, “computer.”
But many users aren’t aware. The Sussmans found out about the setting a year after buying the device. They have decided to keep “Alexa” because they say they find it funny.
Amazon has sold more than 11 million Echos and Dots since 2015, Morgan Stanley estimates, and it is working with partners to put Alexa into other products, including Ford Motor Co. cars and General Electric Co. lamps.
Some human Alexas want nothing to do with her.
“Oh, your name is Alexa, like the Amazon thing?” Alexa Duncan, 33, says she hears all too often these days. She refuses to buy the Echo.
Amazon says it named its Alexa after the ancient Egyptian Library of Alexandria. The company hasn’t offered any formal apologies to the human Alexas.
From Joel Kotkin, at the Daily Beast, "The Depression and WWII shaped the greatest generation, and postwar prosperity shaped the Baby Boomers. Millennials, battered by capitalism, move ever leftward":
Roughly half of Millennials have positive feelings about socialism, twice the rate of the previous generation https://t.co/ofqRdNCJpD— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) February 19, 2017
Increasingly American politics are driven by generational change. The election of Donald Trump was not just a triumph of whiter, heartland America. It also confirmed the still considerable voting power of the older generation. Yet over time, as those of us who have lived long enough well know, generations decline, and die off, and new ones ascend.Hey, bring it on, lol.
In this past election, those over 45 strongly favored Trump, while those younger than that cast their ballots for Clinton. Trump’s improbable victory, and the more significant GOP sweep across the country, demonstrated that the much-ballyhooed millennials simply are not yet sufficiently numerous or united enough to overcome the votes of the older generations.
Yet over time, the millennials—arguably the most progressive generation since the ’30s—could drive our politics not only leftward, but towards an increasingly socialist reality, overturning many of the very things that long have defined American life. This could presage a war of generations over everything from social mores to economics and could well define our politics for the next decade...
And keep reading.
Monday, February 20, 2017
Milo's a modern Icarus who tried to fly too high and far, only to meltdown amid the onslaught of the politically correct masses.
Here's the second of his two Facebook posts today, attempting to save face (and save his career). Alas, the fury over his pedophilia comments is just too ferocious. See, "I am a gay man, and a child abuse victim" (at Memeorandum). And his earlier attempt at contrition, "A note for idiots (UPDATED)."
Not only has CPAC disinvited him, but Simon & Schuster cancelled his book contract. And if he gets the boot from Breitbart, which website staffers are pushing, it'll be the fastest fall of a political iconoclast I can remember.
Milo says he does not support pedophilia. https://t.co/8g2Q5klGw9— Heat Street (@heatstreet) February 20, 2017
Simon & Schuster Cancels Milo Yiannopoulos's Book. Our full story. https://t.co/eDwpnx3qEf— Publishers Weekly (@PublishersWkly) February 20, 2017
And believe me, the left's fingerprints are all over this. See, Conservative Treehouse, "It’s Not About Milo – It’s About The Existential Threat That Milo Represents…"
See Robert M. Utley, at Amazon, The Indian Frontier, 1846-1890.
Also, Robert M. Utley, Frontier Regulars: The United States Army and the Indian, 1866-1891.
In any case, make what you want of this. Naturally, I think Trump's been about as awesome as you can get, for precisely the actions that have people like Goldberg pulling their hair out. Trump takes it to the left, and for that he's rightly considered a savior of our country.
So, FWIW, at Slate, "The First Month of Trump’s Presidency Has Been More Cruel and Destructive Than the Majority of Americans Feared." (Via Maggie's Farm and Memeorandum.)
This is the kind of "heroism, ingenuity, and perseverance" I was talking about. See Allan Eckert, The Frontiersmen: A Narrative.
Eckert published a whole series of books, called "The Narratives of America."
See also, The Conquerors; Wilderness Empire: A Narrative; The Wilderness War; Gateway to Empire; and Twilight of Empire.
The point here is balance. I actually enjoy reading the radical leftist diatribes against racist, hegemonic "settler colonialism." It's just you need to have the intellectual firepower to fight back against the leftist haters. They're mostly communist who want a revolutionary destruction of the American regime. A lot of them (if not all of them) are simply exploiting the tragic Native American narrative for their own nihilist designs. So, again, just keep an open mind, read widely, and then hammer them back mercilessly when you have to.
(I'm going to read and nap all afternoon now; check back later for more blogging.)
I'm reminded of the Davis tome as I see Hampton Sides' book, Blood and Thunder: The Epic Story of Kit Carson and the Conquest of the American West.
I love stories of the West, especially proud, unabashed stories of American heroism, ingenuity, and perseverance. I think those are exactly the things leftists hate most, which makes me thrill to them all the more.
The L.A. Times obituary, by the way, is much better, way more honest, than the New York Times's. A key point: McCorvey never had an abortion.
In any case, here's Garrow's book, Liberty and Sexuality: The Right to Privacy and the Making of Roe v. Wade.
Look out! It’s another fake Islamophobia crisis.Still more.
“Huge Growth in Anti-Muslim Hate Groups During 2016: SPLC Report,” wails NBC News. “Watchdog: Number of anti-Muslim hate groups tripled since 2015,” FOX News bleats. ABC News vomits up this word salad. “Trump cited in report finding increase in US hate groups for 2nd year in a row.”
The SPLC stands for the Southern Poverty Law Center: an organization with slightly less credibility than Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey Clown College, and without the academic degree in greasepaint.
And you won’t believe the shameless way the SPLC faked its latest Islamophobia crisis.
The Southern Poverty Law Center’s latest “hate group” sightings claims that the “number of anti-Muslim hate groups increased almost three-fold in 2016.”
That’s a lot of folds.
And there is both bad news and good news from its “Year in Hate and Extremism.”
First the good news.
Casa D’Ice Signs, the sign outside a bar in K-Mart Plaza in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, is no longer listed as a hate group. The sign outside the bar had been listed as a hate group by the SPLC for years. The owner of Casa D’Ice had been known for putting politically incorrect signs outside his bar. So the SPLC listed the “signs” as a hate group. (Even though there was only one sign.) Not the bar. That would have made too much sense.
Since then Casa D’Ice was sold and the SPLC has celebrated the defeat of another hate group. Even if the hate group was just a plastic sign outside a bar.
But the bad news, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, is that anti-Muslim hate groups shot up from only 34 in 2015 to 101 in 2016.
What could possibly account for that growth? Statistical fakery so fake that a Vegas bookie would weep.
President Trump is on the cover of the SPLC’s latest Intelligence Report: a misnomer of a title from an organization whose intelligence gathering led it to list a bar sign as a hate group.
But there’s actually another phenomenon responsible for this startling rise reported by the SPLC.
The SPLC decided to count 45 chapters of Act for America as separate groups.
How do you get a sudden rise from 34 to 101 hate groups? It helps to suddenly add 45 chapters of one group. Act for America isn’t a hate group. It’s also just as obviously not 45 groups.
And it didn’t come into existence last year.
Act for America was only listed as one group in the 2015 list. It shot up to 45 now.
The SPLC this year listed the Los Angeles chapter of Act for America as a separate group. But the chapter has been around for quite a few years.
Furthermore Act for America boasts not 45, but 1,000 chapters across the country. Why list just 45 of them? Look at it from the SPLC’s perspective. Next year, it can add 200 chapters and claim that anti-Muslim hate groups once again tripled. And then it can do the same thing again the year after that.
That way the Southern Poverty Law Center can keep manufacturing an imaginary Islamophobia crisis.
Also added to the list is Altra Firearms: a gun store that ran an ad declaring that it wouldn’t sell firearms to Clinton supporters or Muslims. Like Casa D’Ice, this is another case of the SPLC demonstrating that it has no idea what distinguishes a store whose owner says politically incorrect things from a “group”.
The list has added Bosch Fawstin: an artist who was the target of the first ISIS terror attack in America during the assault on the Draw Mohammed cartoon contest. The SPLC announced that it was adding the Eisner nominated artist to its list of hate groups after he survived the attack.
The SPLC’s actions were obscene.
After the attack, Heidi Beirich, in charge of adding targets to the SPLC’s hate map, announced that she would be adding Bosch to the list because the Center now knows his location.
Indeed the SPLC makes a point of highlighting the locations of likely terrorist targets. And the Southern Poverty Law Center’s map of hate has been used by terrorists before.
Floyd Lee Corkins opened fire at the headquarters of the Family Research Council. The conservative Christian organization had been targeted by Corkins because of its appearance on the SPLC’s list.
"Southern Poverty Law lists anti-gay groups. I found them online,” Corkins later confessed to the FBI.
When Leo Johnson, the building’s African-American manager, attempted to stop Corkins, the SPLC shooter told Johnson that he didn’t like his politics and opened fire. The SPLC gunman had planned to kill everyone in the office, but Johnson’s heroic actions saved their lives. The African-American building manager was forced to undergo painful surgeries because of the Southern Poverty Law Center’s hate list.
Despite its role in the terror attack, the SPLC continues to target the Family Research Council.
None of the so-called “Anti-Muslim hate groups” listed by the SPLC have shot anyone. The SPLC has...
Excerpt from Big Agenda in today's Philadelphia Inquirer: https://t.co/ROAQl98P0V— David Horowitz (@horowitz39) February 19, 2017
Ironically, it was a billionaire businessman who broke the mold in the 2016 presidential campaign and brought a new voice into Republican politics. Donald Trump took up the cause of the forgotten working class, promising to restore America's industrial prowess and bring back the jobs that a corrupt elite with a globalist outlook had negotiated away in reckless trade deals that sent Americans to the back of the bus and squandered the prosperity they had created over generations.Most excellent.
Equally groundbreaking was Trump's bluntness in confronting the corruption of both parties for participating in a rigged system that left their constituencies out in the cold. The failure to secure the borders was a national disgrace in which both parties were complicit. In focusing on the criminal aliens who had not been blocked at the borders and were not deported, he broke the silence imposed by the politically correct party line. In calling Clinton a "crook," a "liar," and the enabler of a sexual predator, he took her off the pedestal on which her gender and the Democrats' fantasy of a Republican "war on women" had placed her. By speaking out against the Democrats' rape of the inner cities and their treatment of their black constituents as second-class citizens, Trump burst a bubble that had protected Democrats from the consequences of their actions and opened the ranks of the Republican Party to "people of color."
Trump's readiness to go for the Democrats' jugular rallied Republican voters frustrated by their leaders' long-running deference to Democratic outrages and their willingness to keep their party on the defensive. It was this rallying of the Republican troops, who turned out in record crowds during the campaign, that led Trump to call what he had created a "movement." It is a movement, first of all, anchored in its opposition to the Democrats' collectivism and in defense of individual liberty. Perhaps Trump's most significant innovation as a Republican candidate was the moral language he used to indict his Democratic opponent. Previously, Republicans would have been too polite to call their opponents liars and crooks - even when the evidence clearly showed that they were. If their opponent was a woman, they would never have dreamed of using such language, so deferential were they to the stringent rules of political correctness. Trump broke free of this constraint. But Republicans need to take this a step further and create a unifying theme that has a moral resonance with which they can characterize their opponents and level the political playing field.
That theme is individual freedom. The economic redistribution that progressives demand is not "fairness," as they maintain. Socialism is theft and a war on individual freedom. Compulsory public schools are not a service to minorities and the poor but are infringements on their freedom to choose an education that will allow them to pursue the American dream. Obamacare is objectionable not only because its mandates drive up the costs and diminish the quality of health care, as Republicans have argued. Far more important is that government-controlled health care takes away the freedom of individuals to manage their own health and secure their life chances. Onerous taxes and massive government debt are not accounting problems; they are a war on the ability of individuals to work for themselves instead of the government and are therefore an attack on individual freedom. This is the moral language Republicans need to use if they are going to defeat the progressive agenda...