Tuesday, September 30, 2014

 

Missing a Few Important Details

Here is yet another reiteration of the Democrat's story that the Democrats and Republicans switched racial animi in the 60s. The first troubling mistake of the article is to show, as its only historical photo, Gov. George Wallace standing in the doorway of a building at the University of Alabama blocking the entry of the first black students to attend there. I was in military school in Alabama at the time and watched it live on local TV (and I was struck how quickly the Governor backed down after the federal marshals explained things to him). So what's wrong with that? Clearly, Wallace (Segregation now. Segregation tomorrow. Segregation forever.) was certainly a racist. But he was a Democrat and died a Democrat (as all the southern segregationists, save one, did). If you're writing about mythical Republican institutional racism, showing a famous Democrat being a racist while Governor is probably not the best way to start.


Here is another problem. The false historians write:


The civil rights movement, while a victory on many levels, was also the origin of our present morass. It spawned a powerful national “white resistance” countermovement that decisively altered the racial geography of American politics... The seeds of America’s dysfunction were planted 50 years ago. And the ugly politics of race had everything to do with it.


Powerful national "white resistance" countermovement? Among the Republicans? Utter BS.


What's the proof? Well, it comes down to two sets of two charts. The first is the number of Republican and Democrat votes for and against the 1957 Civil Rights Act. (All but 18 Republicans in the House vote for it, while nearly half of the House Democrats, 107 of them, vote against it. In the Senate 18 Democrats vote against it; none of the 43 Republican Senators voted against it). But rather than compare apples to apples, by showing the vote for the 1964 Civil Rights Act, for example, (where the Republicans support it better than the Democrats did, per representation) the next chart is the supposed decline of "liberal" Republicans and the rise of "liberal" Democrats between the 85th and the 89th Congress. Who's picking the liberal versus conservative labels? What are the criteria? Is there a racial animus component in these labels? Who knows? Pretty bad BS.


The next comparison is the map of the states won by Eisenhower in '56 in his landslide over liberal Democrat Adlai Stevenson compared to the states won by Johnson over Goldwater in Johnson's '64 landslide.


Four states who voted for Stevenson in '56 voted for Goldwater in '64 (all in the South). But there are 13 states that were in the Confederacy; so nine states showed no useful correlation at all, certainly none which supports the "switch" lie. I was young in '64, but I think the reason the four states went for Goldwater had next to nothing to do with race. There was nothing in the nomination speeches about race, nothing in the long laughably unsophisticated (to our modern jaded eyes) television commercials about race. Less than 1/3 of the former Confederacy went for Goldwater when 8 years earlier they went for Stevenson. Only five former Confederate states went for Goldwater at all, that's well less than half. How is that a meaningful statistic? Contemptible BS.


What did the deep South do in the '68 election Nixon v. Humphrey? The four states that had voted for Goldwater voted for Democrat Wallace, running on a campaign almost wholly about racism--Segregation now. Segregation tomorrow. Segregation forever. So at least by '68, the Democrats were still racists as they had always been and supporting institutional racism. What about in '76; how did Carter do against Ford? The entire former Confederacy, except Virginia, went for Carter. So 8 years after the deep South went for a racist Democrat, the deep South went for an ostensibly non-racist Democrat. So not quite yet Republican in the South and presidential politics by then had very little to do with the racism of the Democrats. Nobody was running on a segregation platform. How about the '92 election between Bush (father) and Clinton? Six states of the former Confederacy went for Clinton and seven for Bush. Kind of hard to see any pattern there. However, all these elections go unmentioned in the politico article because they show how fruitless it is to try to see any change in racial animus in the parties merely by noting who the states voted for in presidential elections. Stupid BS.


Then the Big Finish:


In 1956 the “solid South” holds true to its historic allegiance to the Democratic Party, even in the face of Eisenhower’s sweep of the rest of the country. Eight years later, the South is out of step with the nation once again, this time in a way that no one could have imagined in 1956. The votes of the Deep South now belonged to the Republican Party and, more tellingly, to its conservative, anti-civil rights candidate, Goldwater.


This last is an evil maligning of Goldwater. He voted against the '64 Civil Rights Act; but he clearly did so for constitutional reasons (not racial hatred). He felt the right to free association in the First Amendment meant that we could associate or disassociate equally and the federal government could not force us to associate. That desire for association with others unlike us was for persuasion, not force of law. I kinda agree, but I would not repeal the '64 Civil Rights Act because it protects minorities from the institutional racism created and enforced for generations exclusively by Democrats. It's a monument on the grave of Jim Crow. That's why uneducated writers for politico and people willing to lie about history for political gain (but I repeat myself) make me angry with this drivel.


Race relations in the United States and Global Warming rate often as the two issues least worrying Americans. See, we're not as stupid as the Eastern elites think.




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Monday, September 29, 2014

 

Foundation Problems

I don't dislike Nick Kristof as I dislike real hacks like Friedman and Krugman. But Kristof seems to be willfully ignorant about guns and his well crafted piece in the NYT today founders because he does not see what's right in front of his face.

I'll paraphrase the bulk of his piece. He went to a sketchy house to retrieve his "lost" phone and people though he was crazy to do that. He says we're crazy to be used to confrontations that could go violent and wouldn't it be nice if people didn't shoot other people with guns. Or something like that. Here are some key parts that slant the piece off the square, off the true.

About one-third of American households have guns, according to a Pew survey (a bit more, Gallup says), and these firearms kill 32,000 Americans a year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

So if there are as many guns out there as people (and there are, even according to Kristof in the piece) then the average gun-holding household has three guns. I have a lot more than that but I'm a quirky, eclectic collector. Oh, and of the 32k killed by gunshots to the body each year in America, about 20k are suicides. Suicide is a shame and a sin but it's not the sort of gun violence that causes Kristof and his ilk to want to gut the 2nd Amendment and make guns only legal in government hands. There is no burning desire in even a small subset of the left for preventing suicides. Tilt one.

We turn to guns in the belief that they will make us safer. Nonsense!
Sure, there are cases where guns are successfully used for self-defense, but a study in the journal Injury Prevention found that the purchase of a handgun was associated with 2.4 times the risk of being murdered and 6.8 times the risk of suicide. Several other studies confirm that a gun in the house significantly increases the risk that a person in the home will be murdered or commit suicide.

Let's just take the first sentence. Nonsense? Wasn't the second victim of the beheader of women in Oklahoma recently saved because someone right there on the scene had a gun? Why, yes, I believe that's true. So perhaps not completely nonsense. Oh, and Kristof admits the bleeding obvious in his next sentence. There are, in fact, hundreds of thousands of cases where the revelation of the mere presence of a gun ends the crime or violence right there, without any involvement of the police or any shot fired. Some people say it's about a million such incidences each year here in America, where the presence of a gun in the hands of good people prevent assault and murder. Could be, but even just hundreds of thousands is a bigger number than the 11,000 murdered by guns, usually hand guns, each year here. The rest of the second paragraph is the nonsense in that it conflates correlation with causation. It's not the mythical siren song of the gun to the new, innocent owner to commit violence that causes a higher incidence of murder in households with guns, it's the soul of the person purchasing the gun. The intent of the purchaser--is he or she intending to use the gun for a bad end-- is the important factor to what happens to the gun owner. Bad intentions in a unforgiving landscape is more likely to end in tears than good intentions anywhere. Tilt two.



Then there's this journalistic sleight-of-hand.

It’s also fair to note that any single gun is not much of a danger (statistically, a child is more likely to die from a swimming pool at a house than from a gun in the house).
But, with so many guns, often kept loaded without trigger locks, the collective toll is enormous. Just since 1968, it has been calculated, more Americans have died from gunfire than have died in all the wars in our
He mentions the extreme rarity of children accidentally shot and then talks trigger guards (used primarily to stop children from using the gun) and then says the gun death toll is more than 900,000 since 1968. Yes, but very few of those were children and fewer still would have been saved by a trigger guard. Tilt three.



Then the big finish and his partial "solution" to the problem.

The simplest baby step forward would be to institute universal background
Hold on there, kitty cat. Would instant universal background checks actually prevent sales to criminals? How many criminals try to buy a gun from a federal firearm license holder or at a gun show where background checks are required of non FFL holders as well? And of the fools who try, how many are arrested and prosecuted for the federal crime of trying to buy a gun which one can't legally own? Less than 100 each year. And what about the guy purchasing a gun who has very evil intentions but no prior arrests or anything at all preventing him from buying it? We know there are many of those just from the long list of recent mass murderers who legally purchased their murder weapons. The same problem plagues this so-called baby step as plagues all gun legislation--it only effects those inclined to follow the law. The criminal out to get a gun he can no longer legally own after a felony conviction doesn't go to the gun show or the gun store, he goes to other criminals or he steals a gun.



Kristof's proffered solution is not a baby step towards preventing gun sales to criminals but it is a big step in injecting the federal government into non-interstate commerce and the gift giving and private sales between family members, hunting buddies and friends, all without even slowing down the ability of the criminal to be illegally armed. It's the thin end of the fascist wedge (and except possibly for Spain under Franco, all the fascist governments I know about were lefty, were socialists). Kristof, indeed, all the gun control expansion enthusiasts, are lefties. We who take the Constitution, as amended, seriously think that Kristof's "solution" would make life in the United States worse because it would diminish freedom. We think that's a bad idea.



The fact that we would get absolutely no benefit from that curtailment of freedom makes it a stupid, bad idea.

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Thursday, September 25, 2014

 

Well Equipped Enemy




Tiger 2 tanks, Royal Tigers. On the lower one, on a street somewhere, you can see the Zimmerit anti-magnetic paste applied to the outside so that a very brave Soviet soldier could not attach a magnetic mine. All the surfaces of this tank's armor have a slope to them which helps in surviving a hit from Allied cannon fire. Very good tank after they worked the kinks out. The Nazis didn't have enough of them to make any difference, however, producing less than 500 during the last years of the war.

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We Were All Young Once

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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

 

Real Evil People

 
 
SS Obersturmbannführer Adolf Eichmann, general contractor for the Holocaust (Heydrich was the architect), who pursued the Final Answer to the Jewish Question with such zeal and efficiency that he actually hurt Germany's war effort. Eichmann felt he owed his "best" work to his former boss Heydrich, killed in Prague. Eichmann walked a free man out of Germany after the war and eventually hid in Argentina until Israelis famously captured and returned him to a fair trial in Jerusalem and a well deserved death sentence by hanging after the verdict. He swung at the end of May, 1962.
 
There was a time I was troubled by the "kidnapping" to get him to justice. Now I know they got the right guy and rightfully saw justice done.
 
Kind of a rat like face in my view. BIH.

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Thursday, September 11, 2014

 

A Brief Photo/Essay on the South Pole


Wisting, Bjaaland, Hassel and Amundsen at the South Pole in 1911, the first humans to stand there, along with Hanssen who's taking the photo. (They ate the dog on the way back). The only installation then was poles and tent pegs in the ice/snow.
By the late 20th C. there was a whole complex including a geodesic dome, but it kept getting covered in ice and snow.


When built, the dome entrance was at the ice surface.

So they built structures on foundations that would "float" above the accumulating ice and snow. (The dome sinking under the ice is at the extreme right). This is about 2005.

The South Pole Station pretty much right now. The dome was dismantled about 5 years ago. It's called the Amundsen-Scott Station although Amundsen and his party got there first and came back alive; Scott and his party were a month or so late and died on the way back. It's very late Winter there and still remarkably cold. The sea ice, a little under the area of Russia right now, will begin melting in earnest in about another month. In the North, our sea ice melt should stop in just over a week.

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Things Poorly Informed People Say

I was going to say these are things that stupid people say but you can be smart and completely ignorant of history and say the same thing.

1. The Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei, the National Socialist and German Workers Party, the NSDAP, whom we call the Nazis, were right wingers, socialist right wingers.

2. The pro-slavery, KKK manning, racist Democrat party, after a hundred years of keeping blacks second class citizens with 'Jim Crow' laws, decided to switch racial animi with the anti-slavery, pro-freedom, non-racist Republican party, to which roughly as many African-Americans belonged as belonged to the Democrat Party, all prior to 1965.*

3. The members of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (Levant) are not Islamic. You have to ignore what they call themselves to make this idiotic statement, but see #1 above.

4. The city of Dallas shot Jack Kennedy in the head and not the Communist loser who was mad at Kennedy for not being enough of a leftie.

I'll return to this as other idiots reveal themselves.

*The greatest gains prior to 1965 for African Americans as Democrats were in the 30s when nearly the whole country went Democrat. I had put that a majority of African Americans were Republicans, but that was from 1865 to 1931. My mistake.

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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

 

List of Allies the United States Has Stabbed in the Back

This lists starts in 1950.

South Vietnam

Cambodia

Czech Republic

Poland

Great Britain

Egypt

Saudi Arabia

Iraq

Israel

Ukraine

Afghanistan (soon)

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Catastrophic Vacuum Decay

Stephen Hawking and other high-energy particle physicists fear that if we produce Higgs bosuns at the wrong energy level then the universe will end with a bubble of the true vacuum expanding at the speed of light. We wouldn't know what hit us.

Of course given the size of the universe, this could already be happening in a galaxy far, far away and it won't reach us for several billion years.

I don't believe Higgs bosun particles actually exist, so I'm not that worried. Of course, I ain't no Stephen Hawking, either.

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Tuesday, September 09, 2014

 

Real Evil People


Chairman Mao Zedung, who died this day in 1976, probably is responsible for more violent deaths than any other person, ever. Also rumored to like very young girls.

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