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Lost in Translation, Right Might Not Mean Right

I have written before about how the left sees words as important and tries to redefine them in ways that benefit the left, Words evolve. ...

Sunday, November 11, 2018

A Variety of Things, Good, Bad, Embarrassing, and Awesome

It is, of course, November 11, and the one hundredth anniversary of the end of the war to end war.  Here in the USA we now call November 11, Veterans' Day, and try to honor the service of all our veterans in our way too many wars and quasi-wars.

President Trump is in Paris for the commemorations and, according to the press, had to sit through some pompous exposition by Macron on the evils of nationalism. Macron might do well to reflect that France would not be in quite the mess it now finds itself as home to thousands of jihadis and other malcontents, if France's ruling elites had shown a little more concern for nationalism. He tried to make "nationalism" sound evil and to make some sort of distinction between it and patriotism. All that rings hollow coming from the "Euroelite" that has caused so much devastation at home and abroad, and which threatens to put a stake into the heart of the Old World. Macron, of course, also has returned to the old subject of an EU army. I have written a great deal, in the Old Diplomad 1.0, about the insanity of an EU army when the Europeans won't even pay for NATO. It's just another fevered dream of the Euroelite. All this drives home the long-standing Diplomad dictum, "Never listen to the Europeans." To listen to them will bring you Libya and other insanities.

Here at home, there can be no longer ANY doubt, if any existed, that the Democrat Party, the world's oldest continuously operating party, is nothing but a power-mad and criminal organization. The party of slavery, Jacksonian genocide, civil war, Jim Crow, the KKK, treason, and lynch mobs, continues its traditions. Once again, we see the vast resources of the Criminal Party marshaled to steal an election or two. Once again, we see the calls for endless recounts, the sudden apparition of "lost" boxes of ballots, the "accidental" destruction of records, and the insistence on non-citizen votes being counted. It is not enough to have the foreign and the dead vote, and living Americans vote more than once. No, we have to keep counting and counting until the sum is the "right" one, i.e., the Criminal Party wins. This has got to stop. As I have noted repeatedly, I have a lot of experience as an election monitor and could never certify our elections as clean and fair. It's a national embarrassment.

On the good news front, I got in a lot of range time this week.

I took my Spanish sister-in-law to the Triangle Shooting Academy in Raleigh, and, after the appropriate safety briefings from the terrific staff there, let her blast away. She went from visibly shaking when I pulled out my S&W MP AR-15 ("I have never seen that type of gun!") to shouting with delight as she put an enormous amount of expensive .223/5.56 ammo downrange. We had to go shooting two days in a row, as she, who had never held, much less fired a gun in her life, noted, "It is addictive!" She also got to shoot my .22 Ruger target pistol, my new Sig P320 9mm, my two S&W MP 2.0 one chambered in .40 and  the other in .45, one of my beloved Colt Government Model 1911s in.45, and two of my revolvers, the S&W .357 mag and "Dirty Harry's gun," the magnificent S&W .44 mag. Her favorites? The AR-15 and the S&W .45--she was actually very good with that one. She bemoaned how in Spain it is virtually impossible for a law abiding citizen to own a handgun, "You have to be a criminal or a terrorist to have one." She carefully wrapped up her targets and had me write on each the date, the make of the gun, the caliber, and the range distance (most of the hand guns at 5 meters, the AR-15 at 20 meters). I got her on video just in case the Guardia Civil needs it. I also spent this morning cleaning the guns, and ordering more ammo. She and the Diplowife are in New York City today and will be watching the Veterans' Day parade.

OK. Off to walk the dogs and reflect on the perfidy of the so-called Democrats.

Thank you veterans!

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

And . . .We Have Barney!

As this little post is being drafted it appears that the Blue Dems will take control of the House of Reps and are going to gain over 30 seats, maybe 35. The Red Reps will keep the Senate and expand their margin by (it seems) three seats. So, in my most humble opinion, we saw neither a Blue wave nor a Red tide; we got us a Purple Barney.

Under normal circumstances, yesterday's results are OK for everybody. We have split government of a sort that the Founders seemed to prefer. Nobody has too much power, and everybody has to make deals to get half of a loaf.

Not bad, except . . . these are NOT normal times. There is an element of craziness and mob rule in the Democratic party that is (understatement) troubling for the future of our country. The first order of business will be to put an end to uncovering the scandals of the FBI, CIA and DOJ. We will see an attempt to revive the dying Russia! probe. We will see lots of loose talk about impeachment of Trump and Kavanaugh and anybody else they don't like, and endless impeachment investigations. We will see an end to legislated border security and efforts to put an end to election fraud. Forget coming up with a reasonable federal budget, and there will be an effort to cut the military. I have no idea what will happen with the new NAFTA deal which requires House approval.

On the good news side: If you had to pick one chamber to control, the Senate is the one. The GOP has that and more comfortably than the numbers alone would indicate. There are no McCains or Flakes unless newly elected Senator Mitt Romney decides to take on the "maverick" role. That means the effort to transform the judiciary into protectors of the Constitution can continue. That's a good thing. It also means no impeachment effort will prosper, also a good thing.

So let's see how President Trump handles Barney, a creature naturally disposed to primeval swamps.

My suggestion? Not that anybody is asking or that President Trump needs my advice, but I would call Congress into session today. Ram as much of my agenda through the lame duck session as is possible. Hope that Paul Ryan, perhaps one of the biological fathers of the GOP loss in the House, doesn't come up with some reason to stall and muddy as he did on health care.

To bed.

Friday, November 2, 2018

A Little Lightness

No politics. I can't stand watching the commentators on what might or could or will or would happen in next Tuesday's midterms. All the speculation about which voter base is more motivated and what it all means, is just flat boring and tiring. We'll see what happens; we'll see if we have blue wave, a red tide, or something Barney purple, instead.

I am in DC right now, having driven up from NC; sitting in my hotel room while the Diplowife and her sister visiting from Spain raid a nearby TJ Maxx. We will be seeing the two DC kids in a couple of hours. The Diplodaughter just snagged a pretty good gig at the White House working on foreign aid issues. She's waiting on her security clearances; I suggested she just go get the ones pulled from Hillary . . . guess it doesn't work that way.

Anyhow, we spent several very nice days at our little house in Wilmington. We have pretty much repaired it and it's almost back to its glory days.

Wilmington, NC is a perfectly delightful town.  It has a lot of old Southern charm which still resists the invasion of university students, a growing film industry, and expats from around the USA and the world.  The Diplowife, Diplosisinlaw, and I took the two Diplodogs to the beach. These big bad boys, although born in California, had never seen the ocean much less been on a beach. It was pure joy to watch them react to the waves as they went from terrified to being in love with plunging into the somewhat frigid waters.


Here we see the Diplowife auditioning for a role in "Beastmaster, Mistress of the Waves and Wags."

As noted, it was a relaxing non-political joy to watch these guys racing up and down the beach in their duel with the waves. Dogs are the best.

Anyhow, that's it for today.

Signing off from the Great Imperial Capital.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Brazil

I am not an expert on Brazil and don't pretend to be. It, frankly, has been several years since I followed developments in that country very closely. My once pretty good Portuguese has morphed into a sloppy mix of Spanish and Portuguese, what Latin Americans call portuñol.

I am, furthermore, not an expert on Brazil's president-elect Jair Bolsonaro. I look forward to comments from people who know more than I do on Brazil and Bolsonaro.

I am, however, pretty good at reading through media hit jobs. Bolsonaro has the international media, political, and academic elite in a mad spin. We see the usual labels trotted out, "authoritarian," "far right," hater of the Amazonian Indians, lethal for the environment, etc. My favorite, of course, is "fringe" politician. Interesting how a fringe politician can get 56% of the popular vote. I guess 56% of Brazilian voters are on the fringe--helluva fringe, that . . . seems, in fact, more akin to a majority, but then I've never been good at math.

The absolute worst thing about Bolsonaro, of course, is that he is suspicious of China and Iran, and--WORSE!--seems to like and admire both the United States and--HORRORS!--Donald Trump! Yes, that very same anti-semitic Trump who moved the US embassy to Jerusalem; that same racist  and misogynist Trump who has created the best job market for blacks, Latinos, and women in our history! How could he like somebody who does those horrid things?

Bolsonaro wants to put Brazil first! Shame! Shame!

As noted above, I am not keenly familiar with Brazil's politics. I do know, however, that preceding years of corruptocrat leftism have been disastrous for Brazil. The country's economy is in a mess and poverty is growing. I also think I know that Bolsonaro is going to have a a very tough time getting his agenda of privatization and deregulation through. Turning that Brazilian ship around is a massive undertaking and he will be resisted every step of the way. If you think we have a Deep State here, you need to check out Brazil.

In my many years in the Foreign Service I had the opportunity to encounter Brazil's diplomats. They are very well trained, speak many languages, and know their way around and through international organizations better than Bill Clinton does interns. They are also exceedingly anti-American, pro-socialist, and seek to undermine the West's positions wherever they can. The arrogance and smugness of Brazilian diplomats is hard to match. At both the UN and the OAS, they were among our toughest opponents, missing no opportunity to undermine us. They were totally unscrupulous, in other words they openly lied to get what they wanted. You could not trust them at all. The Brazilain Itamaraty  (foreign ministry) is a hive of old Third World think. Cleaning that out will prove a task bigger than Hercules' assignment to cleanse the Aegean Stables. You need to run the Amazon through it. I can only imagine what Bolsonaro will run into with the nationalized industries and the huge bureaucracy that chokes the life out of what should be one of the world's richest countries.

Anyhow, I wish President-elect Bolsonaro all the best. Brazil needs a genuine patriot who will get Brazil's house in order before it tries playing global superpower. I hope that he and Trump can establish a good relationship.

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Gaza South: The Central American Caravan

I have written with some frequency and length about the existential threat the USA faces on its southern border. I see that the caravan stunt of last March-April has been renewed with great vigor. I noted at the time that,
this little stunt is outrageous as it is being, as noted, aided by a nominally "friendly" country, Mexico (see my take on Mexico's friendliness here and here). Not only that, but legally the marchers have no case. If they are fleeing Honduras, they can seek asylum in Mexico, the first stop in their "escape." Mexico has the responsibility to grant them asylum, turn them over to the UN, or return them to their country of origin.
That remains true today, of course. It is a hostile act, an overtly hostile act, by the government of Mexico and those of El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala. The so-called march northward is clearly funded by somebody with deep pockets and good organizational skills, and abetted by officials in those countries. The immediate victims, of course, are thousands of poor people being lied to, exploited, and put in great physical danger.  We see pictures of marchers painting swastikas on American flags and then burning them, and waving flags of Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador at the head of long columns of marchers. These people apparently so hate racist, xenophobic America, and feel so patriotic about their home countries, that they are putting their lives at risk to head for the USA and get away from their non-sh*thole countries.  

The usual morons in the media are having a field day trying to blame these marches on Trump. I guess, in a way, Trump is to blame as under him the US economy rockets along and generates new jobs and rising wages for our workers, all of which serves as a magnet for the poor of the world. We should ask President Trump to stop winning for the USA, and that would, I assume, slow down the rate of marching. Right.

In other words, elect the Democrats and that will make the USA a much less attractive place to live for everybody. We could do that . . . or we could do what we should have done long ago: build the wall; change the immigration laws so that you can't come here to mooch or work illegally; and punish the traffickers. By traffickers, by the way, I include the governments of Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras, and the funders of these marches. Do what I long ago suggested, that until these countries begin to act as "friends," use our military and other elements of national power to shut the border to all traffic in goods and people; suspend issuance of visas to nationals of those countries; and, of course, drastically reduce those nations' diplomatic and consular presence in the USA. Yank us out of NAFTA, and tell those American companies who build their factories in Mexico, that doing so is a bad bet on the future. Prosecute any American individuals or organizations involved in funding, organizing, or leading these marches.

The President has said that he thinks there are probably MS-13 and Middle Eastern terrorists among the marchers. The media, of course, sent a couple of reporters down to Mexico and could not find any such creatures. We, of course, all know that if we ask an MS-13 or ISIS member trying to sneak into the US, whether he is one of those, they will answer truthfully. Right.

You know, I don't care if there is or these isn't a member of the MS-13 or ISIS in these marches. The marches themselves are a threat to the US. If they are allowed to get away with the insertion of thousands of people across our border, we have stopped being a nation. The Israelis understand that and haven't fallen for the same stunt when it has occurred along their border with Gaza. The left want images akin to those in Gaza along our border. The marches must be stopped.

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Voting Early (and Often?)

I am not a great fan of the spreading contagion of early voting. In them-thar olden days, you voted on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, and that was basically it--except, of course, for  absentee ballots generally reserved for military serving overseas or people in hospitals or with other medical excuses. No more. Early and absentee voting have been dramatically loosened, and one needs have no particular excuse for either. One can also register and vote on the same day--that's made for abuse.

OK. Despite my antipathy to it, I took advantage of early voting here in North Carolina. It began on Wednesday, October 17 and will run through Saturday, November 3.

I showed up before 8 am on the 17th, and was surprised to find a considerable crowd. I was also surprised to find lots of campaigning right up next to the voting station--this despite signs prohibiting such beyond a certain point. To get into the building, one had to run a gauntlet of people handing you  filled-out recommended ballots, a variety of materials on one or another ballot proposal, and information on candidates for a variety of jobs. Everybody, I want to note, was friendly, and I felt no intimidation. I, however, noticed that ALL of this campaigning was coming from the Democrat side. There was none, not one, pamphleteer supporting Republican or conservative candidates and issues. The ballot itself, I quickly saw, also reflected a lack of Republican ground game. Many slots for local positions, including judges (voting for judges, I find an odd thing) had only a Democrat candidate. Even the sheriff slot had only one candidate, a Democrat. On one judge slot there was one Democrat and two Republicans running--nice way to split the vote, fellows.

To cut this boring story short, I voted only Republican, leaving "D Only" slots blank, and voted exactly opposite of the recommendations for other issues that the pamphleteers had made. One pamphlet had been specially designed to "trigger" me: it was labelled, "For a Progressive North Carolina Vote . . . " and then the recommendations.

As an old election observer, with many elections around the world under my belt, there is no way I could certify our election process as free, fair, and open. Inside, for example, the voting office I was never asked for an ID of any kind--it's expressly prohibited--and merely had to state my name and address, and sign an affidavit that I was who I said I was. The clerk checked my name against the address I gave, and handed me a ballot. That was it.  When I got home, I had in my mailbox an absentee ballot from my old address in California; I added that document to one I had gotten a couple of days earlier from my old address in Virginia, and a voting reminder notice I got last week from my old address in Florida. I did not avail myself of these ballots.

This system is broken, and badly so. It clearly comes from an earlier age when we all knew our neighbors and didn't move so much. It is clearly early 20th century at best. As noted above, it's made for abuse.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Mobs and Tribes

What a weird week. I know that phrase is getting used a lot lately, but still.

Well, I am so glad that the rest of the world has caught up with the Diplomad in my long-time description of the Democrat Party as the party of the lynch mob. If you have absolutely nothing else to do, feel free to go through posts over several years, and you will find my description of the world's oldest political party as the party of the lynch mob.

That is what Democrats and their acolytes do: they create, lead, and participate in lynch mob justice. Just about any issue they adopt quickly becomes fodder for that mob. It is time for the Democratic Party to go away, and completely restructure itself into something other than what it is now. Time, in that old post WWII phrase, for the Democrats to "demob." Battering cars, flinging yourselves at doors, forming cry circles, chasing people out of restaurants, and threatening anybody who disagrees with you with acts of "incivility" is not the way to go.

To add just another touch of weirdness, we have Senator Elizabeth Warren proudly announcing DNA results that "PROVE" she's a Native American. She fell right into Trump's trap. She had made a nice career for herself in Harvard and other "elite" institutions by claiming to be a Native American woman of color. Trump promptly labelled her Pocahontas and made her a laughing stock. She couldn't leave it alone and doubled down, taking Trump's DNA test challenge. She produced a weird video in which some geneticist whom she hired says she definitely has Native American "markers" in her DNA. You can read up on this weirdness but I must just point out that she has a tiny fraction of "Native American" DNA, which folks have been quick to point out is well below that which average Americans have. What has not been too widely noted has been that these DNA testing services have little if any Native American DNA samples from North America as most of the tribal nations have refused to participate in providing samples. The testing company's "Native American" DNA samples actually come from Mexico, Peru, and Bolivia. So if the test has "proved" anything, it has "proved" that Warren might be 1/1024 part hispanic Aztec, Mayan, or Inca. Wow! The clown of Mass has beclowned herself further. Trump wins again.

Before I have to return to my hurricane damage duties and working on my father's estate, let me make this vow before my six readers: I take the pledge never to vote for any Democrat or Democrat-backed policy ever in my life.

Let's make the mid-terms memorable. I want to see more prog crying circles, and more progs flinging themselves against giant locked doors . . . it brings me great pleasure in my old age.