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An American Coup D'etat?

This has gotten completely out of control. I never thought I would see our country's politics reduced to the degrading levels of a Banan...

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Venezuela: Socialism's Poster Boy

Over the years I have written a great deal about Venezuela's horrid Chavez/Maduro socialist regime. In addition, as a Foreign Service Officer, particularly when I worked in Guyana, at the UN, in SouthCom and at the OAS, I dealt with prior Venezuelan governments as well as the current regime and its supporters and opponents.

Venezuela provides one of the great tragic stories of our time. A tragedy in the true sense of the word: the players know the outcome but keep on acting their assigned roles. Even before gangster Chavez assumed the presidency, the place had very serious problems. It had striking wealth and striking poverty; it had some very modern sectors and some very backwards ones. It had an unstable, corrupt, and barely functioning democracy, but it did have a lively free press, and opponents did not get themselves exiled, imprisoned, or have their property seized--unlike under Chavez/Maduro.

In MY experience, with some exceptions, Venezuelan diplomats, regardless of the party in power in Caracas, came across, as insufferable, arrogant and ignorant. Decidedly anti-American, they thought Venezuela deserved a much more prominent place in the sun, one denied them by the US. I found them poorly trained, and, again, as a rule, not very knowledgeable about anything except their diplomatic immunities and duty-free rights. Not a pleasant crowd. Under the Chavez/Maduro regime, that diplomatic corps became outright gangsters who would bully, insult, and threaten to get their way. They threw around oil money as though it would last forever. I had many clashes with Venezuelan diplomats in private in back rooms negotiating some accord or another, and in public on the floor of the OAS. They were not very impressive. The Venezuelan people did not get their money's worth.

Well, it seems, and I emphasize that word, we might have entered the last days of the evil Chavez/Maduro regime. I don't know, but certainly hope so--although I have absolutely no idea, nor does anybody else, about what comes next and how. The end of Maduro's rule, while most welcome, will not end the troubles for Venezuela. Under socialism, this previously already troubled country has become an absolute wreck. Any leader after Maduro will have his hands full, and enjoy a VERY short honeymoon. A new leader will inherit a horrific situation, a challenge of incredible proportions.

The economy has all but disappeared. People are starving in the dark, yes, starving with no electricity in an oil-rich country in the 21st century. Basic public services, including hospitals, have ceased to function. Perhaps as many as four million people have fled abroad, including doctors, nurses, engineers, and, of course, investors and businessmen, foreign and domestic, large and small. How will any new government get them to return? How will Venezuela resuscitate its dying oil sector? How will it address the dire food and medical shortages? What about the chaotic situation in the streets, to wit, Caracas as the murder capital of the world? How will Venezuela deal with its huge foreign debt, the depletion of its foreign currency reserves, and the collapse of its currency? How will it handle millions of people now entirely dependent on the government? What about meting out justice to the drug-dealing crooks and savages of the socialist Chavez/Maduro regime? The questions come in an endless cascade; the answers not even in a trickle.

And the USA? Obama completely mishandled Venezuela. Under that administration, we engaged in full retreat; we rarely if ever responded to the attacks, insults, and lies hurled at us by that criminal regime. Bush did not prove much better. Under both Bush and Obama, we allowed Chavez/Maduro to challenge us in our hemisphere; join ranks with narcos, terrorists, and other of our enemies; we let Caracas interfere in the political processes of multiple nations in the region; as noted, we did little or nothing about any of it. Trump has handled Venezuela much better with targeted sanctions, tough honest talk, and, of course, by unleashing our own energy potential undermining not only the crooks in Venezuela but those in Russia and in Iran, as well.

I do not want US military intervention in Venezuela. The challenge posed by the disaster in Venezuela appears one more for Colombia, Brazil, and others in the region than for the USA. We should encourage the Latin Americans, who seem finally to have woken to the Venezuelan calamity, to handle the situation. Let them intervene if they want; we should not. We should stand ready to help as part of an international humanitarian effort, but that's it--with one exception, see below. We should not want to own this mess. To put it mildly, little to no gain exists for the USA in military intervention in Venezuela. The negatives FAR outweigh any positives. I repeat, we do not want ownership of the Venezuelan disaster.

Russia? Moscow stands to become a big loser if the Maduro regime goes down. If that happens, it appears uncertain that Russia (or China) would get back their huge investments and loans. Even more important for the Russians, collapse of Maduro's rule would unravel what remains of the old Soviet play in Latin America. Could the end of the vile socialist regimes in Nicaragua and Cuba--both dependent on discounted Venezuelan oil--come far behind? In sum, what remains of Moscow's challenge to the US in this hemisphere crumbles with the end of the Chavez/Maduro criminal regime.

This brings us to the exception to no US intervention. Aside from providing humanitarian assistance, we should make clear to the Russians--and their Cuban puppets--as well as the Chinese, that they must stay out; they cannot try to run the game in Venezuela; if they do, they will face consequences from us.

Best of luck to the people of Venezuela.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Trump Strikes Again: Dumping the UN Arms Treaty

I am sitting in the Imperial Capital, aka, Washington DC.  Lovely weather, a beautiful day. The Diplowife and I walked all over the city, and now she's off to go shopping while I recover in the hotel.

I was delighted to read that President Trump is withdrawing our signature from the so-called UN Arms Treaty. He signed the notification to the Senate with a typical Trumpian flourish, while giving a speech at the NRA HQS. He knows politics like nobody else does! The Dems are going to have their hands full in 2020.

Your humble Diplomad had written about this travesty of a treaty WAY BACK in July of 2012. I noted back then that this UN effort posed innumerable threats to American sovereignty and to the rights of Americans. It also promised to be an endless source of employment for lawyers and leftist activists. It would have devastated the small arms industry, and essentially ended individual ownership of firearms. It was a disaster, so, of course, Obama signed it and sent it to the Senate for ratification, where it languished.

Trump has canceled that signature.

Delightful news.


Thursday, April 25, 2019

Biden: Third Time's the Charm, or Three Strikes and You're Out?

Yaaaaaaaaawn . . . Biden is running. What a surprise, not.

It seems he's been running for Prez my whole adult life. Harold Stassen reboot? Or, maybe, a male version of Florence Foster Jenkins, the world's worst singer, "always eaten in the end" by the lions?

I have written before about him and how he's going to have to fend off the leftist lions who now run the Democratic Party Colosseum. I won't repeat all that. 

Let me, however, note that Biden's not very smart; has a lousy record of achievement; is a proven liar; is associated with all of the Obama failed policies and scandals; has been a corruptocrat his whole life; hasn't ever had an original thought; is an abysmal speaker; and, overall, is as exciting as Jello for dinner. 

He, therefore, is the best candidate the Democrats have.

At least he doesn't hate America--well, at least not overtly--and is not batshit insane, well, not yet; we'll see if his bid for the nomination doesn't drive him into the loony bin to compete for the support now going to his competitors. Free stuff for everybody! Voting rights for felons in prison! No guns for law abiding citizens! More illegals are good! Reparations! Hate whitey!

Will he give up his "middle of the road" Jello politics for the more exciting spicy politics of identity and endless grievance?  The world wonders.

More important, will he face the one ultimate question, the one never clearly put to Hillary Clinton? 

You know the one: When you had power, what did you do with it? Take your time.

Popcorn is available in the lobby. 

Free for everybody!

Monday, April 22, 2019

Sri Lanka Massacre

The death toll from the Easter bombings in Sri Lanka continues to climb. From press reports, it seems that perhaps some 300 people were murdered and hundreds more injured. Absolutely disgusting barbarity.

I lived in Sri Lanka for three years, and know almost all the bombed sites, including St. Anthony's. I made a lot of friends in Sri Lanka, and am horrified by what "some people" did to their beautiful country.

Almost as repulsive as these attacks on innocent people has been the reaction of the media and much of the political elite around the world. As George Orwell famously observed in 1946, "To see what is in front of one's nose needs a constant struggle." Let's engage in that struggle.

When word of the horror first began to get out, the media, in the guise of not jumping to conclusions, spent a long time talking about Sri Lanka's past civil war, trying to make it seem as if these bombings form part of a long history, i.e., nothing to see here, move along, it's just Sri Lanka. I read and heard commentary that the attacks likely had come from some reborn LTTE (Tamil Tigers) faction, or from Buddhists upset by Christian proselytizing. All hideous nonsense.

We had those Great Regulators of Moral Standards, President Obama and Crooked Hillary, issuing almost identical Tweets bemoaning attacks (by whom?) on foreign tourists and, my favorite phrase, on "Easter worshippers." What a great phrase, "Easter worshippers." When I first saw it, I thought something had happened on Easter Island. Then I thought, who worships Easter? Nobody I know. Maybe these paragons of moral rectitude just had a senior moment, and let slip away the word they really meant to use, you know, "Christians." Yes, there I said it, Christians.

"Some people" carried out deliberate and well-planned attacks meant to kill hundreds of Christians, local and foreign: "To see what is in front of one's nose needs a constant struggle."

Now that I think of it, have we left something out of our commentary? Have we missed something in our own struggle "to see what is in front of one's nose"? What could it be? What, what could it be? Oh, yes! The "some people"! Guess who they were? One guess, only. Yes, the Religion of Peace! Don't I give the hardest quizzes? Wonder if Obama and Crooked Hillary could pass?

These attacks form part of a long-running war, one of some 1400 years, of Islam against Christianity and Judaism. This war takes place in Western places such as New York, San Bernardino, Tampa, Boston, Ft. Hood, Copenhagen, London, Paris, Nice, Madrid, Barcelona, Amsterdam, Brussels, Sydney, and Ottawa; let us not forget, however much the press might want us to, that it also occurs even more violently and often with much higher death tolls in places such as Kenya, Sudan, Nigeria, Indonesia, Egypt, Syria, Iraq, India, and, now, Sri Lanka.

As I noted long ago, "We should be at war; instead, we are under attack." Let's be very clear: these murderers were not "radicalized" by the internet, nor do they comprise some crazy 1% fringe that have misinterpreted the teachings of Islam. They are Islam.

When you look in front of your nose you will see, it is the Islam.

Islam is not a religion like the others. It is a creed of conquest and destruction. We see that, again, this time in the churches, hotels, and streets of Sri Lanka.

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Russian Collusion: The Real Costs of the Greatest Political Hoax in US History

A recent post here noted that unlike many of the "pundits," I would not pretend to have read the 400-plus page Muller report, and wasn't even sure I ever would read the thing. Well . . . . curiosity, alas, got the better of me, and like that ill-fated cat, I began to churn through the Great Tome. I have not gotten too far, and, frankly, remain uncertain about finishing it. Skimming pages, jumping around within the text, and . . .  finding it a whole lotta crapola.

Costing somewhere around $26-$35 million to produce, the Mueller Report, the world's most expensive book, comes off as a bad rip-off from that iconic Seinfeld TV show, you know, a show "about nothing."

Yep, 400 pages about nothing, and not even funny.

Seinfeld did "nothing" better.

Unfair to label the Muller tome a story about nothing? The pretext, certainly, for the investigation of Trump-Putin collusion proved total nonsense, a "nothing." It was a hoax invented by the Democrats and Hillary Clinton's desperate campaign, getting salacious "info" from a hack former British spy on the DOJ payroll, and funneling that unverified "info" through the shady GPS Fusion outfit, which had ties to the FBI. The "information" came from internet chat rooms, informants working for the FBI, and, quite possibly the Russians, always eager to sow confusion. This activity, of course, was aided and abetted by our hack mainstream media, and, of course, by President Obama who used our law enforcement and intelligence agencies as arms of the DNC--as this little blog stated from the start of the "scandal," e.g., here, here, and here, just to mention a few of many posts.

The Democrats and their Deep State allies "leaked" fake information to the press, and then cited the subsequent press reports as evidence of the validity of the fake info and of Trump's perfidy. That fake information, we now know, backed up by the fake press reports "confirming" the fake information, formed the basis for seeking and getting FISA warrants, "unmasking" of American citizens, and conducting Beria-type interviews of Trump supporters. Real people, innocent people, had their lives turned upside down, bank accounts wiped out, and reputations smeared by lies and Mueller's NKVD bully-boy tactics in service of an attempted coup.

Since limits exist to how much and how long one can fake something, after over two-and-half years of this brutal nonsense, the report had to admit no such collusion existed. This "nothing" report's "nothing" result, however, has some genuine "historical value" in that it serves as official testimony to something unprecedented in over 240 years of U.S. history. Drafted by angry pro-Clinton Democrats, the Mueller report provides a one-sided, remarkably tone-deaf account by some of the very plotters of how they went about trying to undo an election result, overthrow a democratically elected President of the United States, and--complete insanity--how they "investigated" a story they themselves invented.

How these Democrat hacks must have laughed when they got that gig! Why not have Al Capone investigate the Valentine Day's massacre?

From day one, the "investigators" knew the result, no collusion; they knew they had the task of "investigating" a fake accusation. This "investigation" sought to provoke Trump into some angry "obstruction" act and perjury. Period. Nail him on procedural nonsense re a crime that never existed, and the ensuing "perjury" and "obstruction" hullabaloo would cover up that no collusion ever existed. That was the "insurance policy": I repeat, frame Trump with an absurd collusion story, get him angry enough to"obstruct" or even shut down the investigation and, therefore, provide "grounds" for impeachment.

The authors of the report desperately wanted the coup to succeed; that desire oozes out of the entire report but especially so in the second half on "obstruction." That half fulfills another one of this humble blog's predictions (March 23), that the Muellerites likely would slip a poison pill into the report to keep the coup plot alive,
[N]one of us has seen the report, or knows how Mueller will phrase his conclusions/recommendations. Will he say, as he should, that he undertook a massive waste of time, for which we spent nearly $26 million, and tore apart the country for nothing? I doubt that very much. He might say, that well, he has no ability to go further with the investigation for this or that reason, and recommends handing off portions of it to other prosecutors. He might also go full reptile and state that there was collusion but it does not rise to the level of prosecution, but maybe Congress should consider impeachment, or any number of variations on that theme
Mueller, indeed, went full reptile. He explicitly stated that he couldn't indict the President on collusion or obstruction but also refused to "exonerate" the President on obstruction--as though a prosecutor exonerates--and then did a smear job on the President to encourage the crazies in Congress to impeach him or, at least, keep him tied up with investigations, subpoenas, and a daily barrage of "news" stories on obstruction. This is what blind rage and hate do even to "professional" prosecutors.

That the coup did not take place (yet?) might prove one of those lucky events in American history right there with the carriers not being at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941; Jimmy Carter losing the 1980 election; Hillary Clinton losing the 2016 election; and General Washington carrying off the tricky crossing of the frozen Delaware River to defeat the Hessians on that Christmas in 1776.

The coup plot continues, have no doubt.

The real cost of the Russia collusion hoax and the wearisome Mueller volume far exceeds those $30 million or so the taxpayers spent. The real cost comes from the perversion of powerful institutions, the undermining of faith in the whole system, and the fear, yes, fear, the investigation, the report and subsequent Congressional actions inspire in private citizens. It seems the Congress can insist on getting Grand Jury testimony, and can demand private citizens' tax returns for public scrutiny. Congress and powerful members of the Deep State can lie and leak and distort information with no consequences; citizens can be dragged from their beds by armed men at dawn to face minor procedural charges, etc. The report does not condemn these tactics, and the drafters, of course, not only favor these but themselves used them.

The report does two things, however, that might prove beneficial:

1) The Russian election meddling highlighted in the report came during and with the knowledge of the Obama misadministration, and Obama did nothing about it;

2) By declaring it found no evidence of collusion, the report raises the question of why there was an investigation. How did it get started and by whom?

I hope that the Trump administration and the Senate delve, at least, into those two rather fascinating nuggets that have emerged from the muck of the travesty known as the Mueller Report.  

Thursday, April 18, 2019

The Mueller Report . . . Not

Unlike a lot of "journalists," I will not pretend to have read the 400-page Mueller Report.

I heard AG Barr's news conference today, and thought that he did a very good job of presenting the results, describing the process followed since receipt of the report, laying out the legal requirements for how to handle the report, and stating its major conclusion,  i.e., no Trump-Moscow collusion.

The "journalists" at the presser came off as idiotic political hacks, and Barr fielded their questions and comments with aplomb and wit. The "unprecedented" bit was wonderful; pure sitcom gold.

The journalists also seemed unaware that in the USA, supposedly, a person remains innocent until proven guilty. The Muller investigation did not find evidence of President Trump's guilt. Trump, hence, is not indicted and not guilty.

Will I read the Mueller Report? Maybe, I don't know. It's a bit like getting handed a new giant mystery novel by a turgid writer and being told, "By the way, the butler did it." Not an encouragement to read it.

One issue not getting much press attention: it seems that the report implicitly points the finger at Obama; Russian election meddling took place on his watch. He failed to protect us from that.

I'll see if I change my mind about reading the tome . . . just waiting to see if the hideous clowns who produced the Russia-Trump Collusion Hoax will face consequences.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

A Little Post-Taxes Fun: 1911 Colt Competition Stainless in 38 Super

Well, friends, as did all of you, I have paid my taxes for 2018. I am not happy. I had an enormous tax bill; I just hope all those illegal aliens enjoy all the stuff I provide them. So, in anticipation of April 15, I decided to get myself something a bit more fun than another IRS form. Why, yes, it does mean yet another handgun joining the family. 

Two friends, one Aussie and one Mexican, had for years told me about the glories of the 38 Super. I didn't pay much attention as surely nothing could compete with the .45 ACP, especially a 1911 chambered in that righteous round.  

Well, things happen. In a blue funk thinking about my money going to Uncle Sam, I started reading about the 38 Super, and got intrigued by its history in shooting competitions, and by the generally positive things professional shooters had to say about the cartridge. I watched a lot of videos comparing the 9mm, .40, .45, and the 38 Super. I grew more and more interested; never having shot, much less owned, one of these rare birds, I headed over to my favorite gun store in Wilmington (Backwater Guns.) As they didn't have one hanging about, I ordered one. Three or four days later, it arrived straight from the Colt factory, giving off that new gun smell.

Here it is: 




The eagle-eyed among you will notice that the slide looks dirty. Yes, indeed. I snapped this picture right after we got back from the range in Raleigh. No more new gun smell.

I ran just over 220 rounds of Sig .38 Super +P 125 grain FMJ through it. I had two fail-to-feed incidents both with the same expensive after-market magazine, and both on the last round. I put that mag aside, and the day proceeded without incident. In fact, it proceeded beautifully!

The gun is simply an amazing and very sweet shooter. It has a superb trigger, and great ergonomics--that is a fancy word for the grip is real good. The thing stays on target as if glued there. I provide some proof of that with the following image:



This shows the results of about 30 rounds at ten yards on a two second timer (i.e., the target faces you for two seconds; then flips sideways for five seconds; then returns to face you for two seconds, etc.)

I brought along my trusty 45 S&W MP 2.0 for comparison and--believe it or not--the Colt outshot the S&W--and that S&W shoots very well. The main difference, in my totally unqualified opinion, being the trigger; the Colt trigger is far superior even to the improved trigger in the 2.0. The other factor, perhaps, might be the caliber; much less recoil with the Colt.

I hate to admit that my Aussie and Mexican friends were right--I'll never hear the end of it--but honesty compels me to announce my love for the 38 Super. I would carry it, but this 1911 is just a little too big.

OK, now back to the depressing world . . .

Sunday, April 14, 2019

Progracism, Part II: No Illegals in My Backyard (NIMBY)!

A few weeks back, I wrote a little piece about the prog obsession with race (here) and, more recently, another about prog virtue signaling on "reparations" for mistreated minorities (here). The prog's lunatic obsession with race has been revealed yet again by the Master Troller, His Exalted Excellency President of the United States of America and Commander-In-Chief Donald J. Trump. In a couple of tweets, he has exposed the prog race mania, and how their alleged concern for the welfare of poor brown people forms merely another part of the prog scam.

President Trump lives inside the heads of his enemies. They come to battle him already exhausted, and more than half-defeated. He has an ability to make them go CRAZY! Well, better said, he has ability to reveal the crazy at the core of their philosophy of promoting endless turmoil and radical change.

I, in this case, refer to his statement that he has under consideration "placing" released illegal aliens in sanctuary cities and states.

HEADS EXPLODE! It is illegal to do that! It's so cynical! NO!

Well, of course, the progs lie: it is not illegal to transport aliens, released by our absurd and destructive "catch and release" legal system, to places that will welcome and care for them, i..e., sanctuary cities and states.

Please note that the Obama administration did something similar: the Obamistas transported people from Somalia, the Middle East, Mexico, and Central America, and placed them in traditionally Republican rural, semi-rural, and suburban areas. Permission was not sought of the local communities.

I PERSONALLY witnessed, and wrote about this in a piece posted July 3, 2014. At that time, the Border Patrol tried to "process" bus-loads of illegals and release them into the small Republican town of Murrieta, California, where I lived,
I was encouraged to see the citizens of small Murrieta, California, a town I know very well, rise up against the Border Patrol and its effort to dump several hundred "children" at its facility in Murrieta for "processing," i.e., cutting free. In a near-repeat of the Bundy ranch stand-off, Murrieta residents blocked the USBP buses and made them turn back. Perhaps these buses could head for the White House or for the Kennedy compound in Martha's Vineyard? 
Mayor of Murrieta Alan Long, a decent man, said that his town suffers the consequences of a "failed federal policy." I must disagree with the Honorable Mayor: Murrieta and America suffer the consequences of a deliberate federal and Democratic party policy aimed at changing the nature of our country forever.
Once again, the President has shown that everything about the prog agenda is a hoax, except for the desire to create havoc and open avenues to increased power for the progs. They care only about destroying what exists, and replacing it with something only the progs control. They certainly don't care about the illegals as humans; they have revealed clearly they don't want them around, but are perfectly fine with them spilling into Arizona and Texas towns. All that stuff about how wonderful all these illegals are, how they commit fewer crimes, work harder, etc., than the rest of us, form just more hoax talking points. The progs don't believe all that.

Disgusting. Progs are racists. Period.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Reparations

Reparations.

Lots of politicians and pundits talking about "reparations." Not very clear on how much? For what? To whom? By whom? A good legal definition and some quick descriptions of reparations in the recent past can be found here.

Cory Booker, deeply affected by his previous life as Spartacus, the rebellious slave, has introduced a bill in the Senate to establish a reparations commission:
Such a commission would seek to remedy generations-worth of discrimination as a result of "overt policies fueled by white supremacy and racism that have oppressed African-Americans economically for generations," the New Jersey Democrat said in a statement, in addition to policies "that have ushered millions of Americans into the middle class" but "systematically excluded blacks." 
"This bill is a way of addressing head-on the persistence of racism, white supremacy and implicit racial bias in our country," Booker added. "It will bring together the best minds to study the issue and propose solutions that will finally begin to right the economic scales of past harms and make sure we are a country where all dignity and humanity is affirmed."
This proposal moves significantly beyond those kicking around for about 150 years to provide some sort of government (aka taxpayer) reparations to former slaves, and then to descendants of former slaves.

Booker's proposal, a virtue-signaling gab fest, if enacted would produce what we all can predict, to wit, a conclusion drafted by the usual commission of prog academics and staffers ("the best minds" don'cha know?) and herded along by the usual prog pundits and race hustlers--a permanent gig for Al Sharpton, for example. You don't know what the commission would conclude? You come from the dark side of the moon?

Let me fill you in (SPOILER ALERT): America and its supremacist white population were and are racist, evil patriarchs who hate black and brown people, as well as poor people, women, gays, lesbians, transgenders, immigrants, Native Americans, and, of course, the environment. Have I missed anything? If so, please fill in additional details and forward care of: Spartacus, Senate, New Rome, DC.

The commission, of course, would recommend reparations. What does that mean? Nobody really knows, except reparations would need management by the "best minds," which means, of course, creating a new, massive government bureaucracy and programs, lots of new programs, to hand out reparations in the form of cash, goodies, or services to those so afflicted by America that they never leave--and, in fact, the commission would invite more people to come here to get oppressed.

We, of course, will need racial purity commissions to determine who is or is not black or brown, and, hence, oppressed. We need a percentage of blood rule. Shall we adopt South African standards? How about Nazi standards of racial purity? Will somebody such as Barack Obama, get "a reparations taste," a man so oppressed by America that he became the world's most powerful man, and descends on both his white American mother's and his black Kenyan father's side from slave owners and traders? Will billionaire Oprah get a cut of the action? How about Bill Cosby? How about Spartacus, himself? Will every illegal alien from El Salvador also get a slice? What about people born as one race or gender but who now identify as another race or gender? The "best minds" have their work cut out for them.

One minor suggestion: perhaps the Democrat Party, the party of slavery and Jim Crow, should cough up for slavery reparations? Just a suggestion.

Can't wait to see this unfold.


Sunday, April 7, 2019

Progs: Making the Case for a New Imperialism?

Almost eighteen months ago, I wrote a little post which noted that the progs had become,
engaged in a great debate about the remarks President Trump supposedly made along the lines of "why do we get so many immigrants from sh*thole countries?" Did he or didn't he say it? Not clear. White House denials have been, in my view, masterfully evasive almost as though if he didn't say it, he would like credit for having said it but yet maintain plausible deniability that he did. The progs and many international capitals have taken the bait, and now thrash furiously on yet another Trump hook. Wheels within wheels with this President; we should not forget that this indeed is a president who plays 4-D chess; he has an amazing ability, an unparalleled ability, to troll the progs, make them explode in outrage and, thereby, reveal the slimy hypocrisy that flows though their scaly bodies.
That hypocrisy continues to flow and gush as we debate--screaming match, really--immigration policies not just in the USA, but throughout the Western world. Here at home, our increasingly deranged and leftist Dem party inexorably has moved to the Open Borders position that their toxic logic on immigration requires--just as they now endorse infanticide as their logic on abortion requires.

We have Senator Kamala "Sleep My Way to the Top" Harris, for example, "welcoming" all "immigrants"--including those now considered illegal. Beto "DUI" O'Rourke proclaims that as President he would order all border barriers torn down--they pose a menace to drunk drivers, perhaps?--no word on whether those at his house or a Beto-occupied White House also would go. Elizabeth "1/1024" Warren, and other progs, want to abolish the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency.  Now, to put the cherry on the ICE-ing, we have a Demo candidate for President, Julian Castro, a former Mayor of San Antonio, as well as a former Obama cabinet official, calling for decriminalizing all border crossing. Yes, come on in! The more the better! No limits! Free stuff!

All the candidates support tax-supported welfare programs for "migrants," oppose deportation, and certainly have no objection to aliens voting in our elections--on the contrary, they live here, right? Sign'em up. In addition, let's do away with the Electoral College, and have voting by mail and email to ensure every vote in Tijuana, Dhaka, and San Pedro Sula counts! Make America the Great Souk! The Tower of Babel/Babble coming to your neighborhood!

According to the Demo candidates and their university and media acolytes, the USA, a racist, xenophobic, patriarchal, etc., tyranny must get rebuilt in the image of . . . well, not clear, but maybe Haiti? Venezuela? Cuba? Curiously, our white supremacist, xenophobic, etc., society remains a magnet for people all over the world, especially the non-Anglo world, and most notably south of the Rio Grande and west of Hawaii. We have to take people in and give them everything we've got, obviously, because, obviously, they can't return to their own countries. It, obviously, constitutes cruelty beyond compare to have a Mexican child raised in Mexico, a country with a great history and culture, as a proud Mexican by his Mexican family! The worst thing, obviously, that can happen to people from Somalia, Mexico, El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala is to live in Somalia, Mexico, El Salvador, Bangladesh, Nigeria, Honduras, and Guatemala. They, obviously, must live as proud Somalis, Mexicans, Salvadorans, Bangladeshis, Nigerians, Hondurans, and Guatemalans, but here, and only here, in the evil, racist, etc., USA! Well, obviously!

We hear similar nonsense spouted by progs in Australia, Canada, the UK, New Zealand, Netherlands, Germany, France, etc. Everywhere that traditional Western Civilization has an outpost, it faces the demand to take in anybody and everybody who seeks to move in. Americans, Canadians, Brits, Australians, etc., obviously, have no right to decide who can and cannot live in their countries because . . . RACISM! It's akin to what we hear re Israel: Jews, obviously, must not live in "Arab" lands, but Arabs, obviously, have the right to live in Israel, Europe, Australia, and America. Because . . . wait for it . . . RACISM! Obviously!

As noted, the progs rule out deportation. While, however, these progs object, in public, to the term "shit-hole country," they tacitly acknowledge it as true. Their twisted logic on no deportation and in favor of Open Borders, gives away their real view of much of the rest of the world, to wit, that a whole lotta  countries out there earn that "S-H" title. The prog solution, obviously, consists of turning our Western countries, as I noted before, into open-ended repositories for people from around the world, and soon into copies of the countries from whence come these migrants. The Bill of Rights as a suicide note.

OK, if they can come here because their countries are a mess, let me make a modest proposal, and one not original with me. Some years back, in the 1990's I believe, the UN briefly discussed, didn't get too far, establishing a process for declaring certain countries"Failed States." Once such a declaration occured, the proposal went, a benign sort of colonial administration would run the country: somewhat like when the US ran Haiti, 1914-1934. Borrowing from that idea, therefore, we could have an Anglo-American-Australian headed consortium that would help bring the civilization of the Western world to those people so desperate to live under it. Save them the trip. Might prove cheaper and less risky all around. Uber-eats meets imperialism? British Empire, part II?

Maybe not. I guess the progs aren't ready for the ultimate logical conclusion to their own arguments on immigration. Obviously!

Build the wall. Obviously!

Thursday, April 4, 2019

A Little Praise for NETFLIX: Highwaymen

I love the idea of NETFLIX but haven't been crazy about much of their product. I like that non-Hollywood productions get a good shot at major audience shares, and that a lot of very talented filmmakers from around the world get exposure. I have been very impressed with some of the films coming out of Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, and Spain. That said, much if not most NETFLIX programming, nevertheless, remains very PC/prog oriented. Is nearly every senior British, American, or Swedish police detective a black, lesbian single mom? Too much.

There, however, are some exceptions to this PC dominance. One of the best is Highwaymen starring a grizzled Kevin Costner and an even more grizzled Woody Harrelson as the two ex-Texas Rangers (Frank Hamer and Maney Gault, respectively) who led the successful hunt for Bonnie and Clyde in 1934. Unlike other films made about Bonnie and Clyde, this one focuses on the (flawed) guys who went after them--the Rangers, we should note, and Hamer and Gault specifically, had a history of brutality especially when dealing with Mexican outlaws. Hamer and Gault come off as old time cowboys caught in and trying to navigate their way through a world of slick FBI agents, politicians, early forensic science, two-way radios, and fake news.

Let's face it: B&C were serial murderers or spree killers, who showed no respect for the lives of others, especially cops. In Highwaymen, the two bandits, rarely seen, are not the glamorous figures of Arthur Penn's 1967 Bonnie and Clyde.

Just about everything in the film seems period correct: the language, the scandalous press, the crushing poverty, the B&C groupies, the migrant camps, the clothes, the guns, the cars (OK, forget about the radial tires). It even has a wonderful scene at a local gun store when Hamer buys the weaponry and ammo for his team. The superb photography, by the way, draws you into the environment of Depression-era Texas and Louisiana.

The band of cops put together by Hamer and Gault who eventually caught up to and killed B&C also seem era appropriate: no bad-ass woman, no obligatory black or Asian guy, no hints of homosexuality. On women, Cathy Bates does an excellent job with the role of the colorful and bigger than life Ma "Two Governors for the Price of One" Ferguson, first woman governor of Texas, and while a hater of the Texas Rangers, politically aware enough to realize that she needed some truly hard men to put an end to B&C. The ambush scene, incidentally, was filmed at the exact spot in Louisiana where it took place, a nice tribute to the true story.

Sure, at times the movie is a bit slow, but that is compensated by the truly excellent acting of Kosner and, especially, Harrelson.

Give it a shot. It's good old fashioned story telling. A good time will be had.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Destroying Biden: Karma, Baby, Karma

Joe Biden: not my cup of tea, glass of IPA, shot of bourbon, caliber of gun or any other cutesy idiom you want. I've always seen him as a pompous bore, and, frankly, not terribly bright. I mean, folks, please, in 1988, he plagiarized from Neil Kinnock, yes, Neil Kinnock, another not very interesting, pompous bore full of conventional establishment "wisdom." If you're going to steal speeches from Kinnock . . . well, never mind.

In sum, if Biden ever had a "best-if-used-by" date he appears to have passed it--as we will see.

A typical old-style corrupt Democrat politician, a poor man's Edward "Watch-What-My-Oldsmobile-Can-Do" Kennedy, Biden loved cameras, spouted 1980s vintage pedestrian "social justice" slogans, and yet nestled comfortably in the pocket of banking and credit card interests. He tried to portray himself as just, "Uncle Joe, your neighbor. Let's have a beer." Yawn. A bore. Only his gaffes, ponderous lectures, and hair-transplant travails made him mildly amusing. I found surprising when Obama picked him as his VP in 2008, but, those wiser explained that it made sense: Biden could bring in some middle class male white vote; perhaps ease the concerns of powerful financial people about Obama's leftist views; serve as the voice of experience; and, of course, he would not outshine President Obama. A correct calculation? I don't know. I leave that discussion to pollsters and campaign historians. I know one thing for certain, he did not capture this white dude's vote, nor allay this white dude's concerns about the Obama misadministration.

Well, Uncle Joe got himself screwed over in 2016. It seems he thought that eight years as Obama's loyal sidekick finally would earn him, entitle him, ensure him the machine's backing for the Democrat nomination that he had sought for some 30 years. Nope. Not so fast, white guy. Obama promised that to Hillary Clinton and her powerful money printing press. Joe was talked out of running, given a "surprise" Presidential Medal of Freedom, and sent off to graze in Delaware. See ya, Joe!

As we can see from the score or so of calamities now running or about to run for the Dem nomination in 2020, the ground in the Democratic Party, the world's oldest political party, has shifted radically. Poor Joe, apparently, did not get the memo, the one that says white guys not welcome, or he misunderstood it, "That can't mean me! I love women! I love black people! I don't want them back in chains!" He thought, I guess, that he could gain an exemption from the identity politics mantra.

To prove himself worthy of such an exemption, Joe proceeded to do what Joe does best: give bad speeches. He berated "white male culture"; he made fun of English jurisprudence; and, in a bid for feminist votes, even fell for that nonsensical story about the origins of "rule of thumb." He apologized for being a white guy on the Senate committee that dealt with black Anita Hill's nonsensical accusations against black Clarence Thomas. Joe, really, really wants to be with it . . .

Joe, however, has a touching problem, literally. He likes to touch people; likes it a lot. The internet is full of pictures of Uncle Joe hugging, kissing, holding, squeezing people, uh, especially young women and even girls. Whatever the innocent explanations, he looks creepy, very much so; shall we say, he looks like a tactile reptile? Now the prog media largely had ignored Joe's habit, until, that is, he implied he would run for President, yet again. Suddenly, and predictably, "victims," nay, "survivors" of Joe's jostling began to appear.

Joe is in a fix. He doesn't know how to respond; his statements on his history of "affection" appear hollow, from another less "woke" time. Ain't gonna work. We must believe all women! The fact that these "survivors" are ardent backers of other Dem candidates, is not something the media has given much attention. As usual with these progs, they wait years, almost like old KGB sleeper cells, before they get activated and pour forth their accusations. They, we should note, stayed pretty quiet while Biden served as a loyal Obama soldier, even when he lived up to the VICE in his title.

But now, burn the old white sorcerer! I definitely saw him flying over the house!

Is Joe burnt toast?  I am not a betting man, but . . . we'll see.

Monday, April 1, 2019

FBI Interviews: A Little Reminisce

All this misuse of the FBI and Russian Collusion Delusion madness has provoked recollections in my aged brain of when I got interviewed by the FBI.

While at State, I worked with the FBI on overseas and domestic assignments on a number of issues. I found the agents, overwhelmingly, to be terrific, patriotic, and very dedicated to catching the bad guys.

In the course of my 33-plus years at State, I got interviewed twice by the FBI: once at my request, once at theirs. Keep doing what you are doing, don't expect anything too exciting.

The first time took place during the Reagan administration. After serving in Pakistan, I worked on the Pakistan desk in the early 1980s. I have to leave out some details, but I became somewhat suspicious of a mid-level political appointee who seemed to ask a lot of questions and get involved in all sorts of things not that person's business. This person had many contacts with Pakistani officials but rarely wrote up those meetings. I knew because people at the Pakistani Embassy would let slip that this person had seen so-and-so. Anyhow, after a bit, I got tired of muttering to myself about this, wrote up a long memo with what I had observed and thought, and passed it to the FBI liaison at State. A couple of days later, an agent came by. He thanked me for the memo, called it very useful, asked for clarification on a couple of points, and said he'd get back in touch. Never heard back. In time, I moved to another assignment. A couple of years later, this person ran afoul of the Department IG for using diplomatic privileges to get parents living overseas duty-free furniture and appliances. Spy?Crook? Crooked spy? I never found out.

The second time I was at my desk writing a boring speech for an address I would make at the OAS that afternoon. The office manager entered and said two FBI agents wanted to see me. This was a very short time after Obama's inauguration, and I thought maybe they were doing an update on security clearances. I wasn't worried.

The two agents, one man and one woman, young and polite, sat down and started by saying that they could not tell me the purpose of this visit, but had questions about people I knew. I, unwisely, said, "OK." The female agent reached into her briefcase and pulled out a large manila folder from which she took a glossy black-and-white picture. She put it on my desk. "Do you know this person?" "Yes," I said, "I worked with him in Guatemala." She nodded, and drew out another picture. Again, I acknowledged that I had worked with this person. Then a third picture, also of somebody with whom I had worked recently. Her male colleague took notes.

Then she asked whether I knew a person called something or another. "No," I said, "never heard of him." I remember her saying, "Really? You've never met him?" That set my "Danger, Will Robinson! Danger!" alarm pinging. I slowly repeated, "That's right. Never heard of him." She pulled out a picture of me shaking hands with somebody at a big reception in DC. She said, "A picture from a few days ago. This is the person you say you never met." I stared at the photo, and suddenly recalled meeting him at a national day event but, "That wasn't the name he gave. In fact, he gave me his card." I furiously rummaged around in my desk drawer, found the card, and passed it to her. "That's the name he used."

She took the card, showed it to her colleague, but before she could speak, I finally wised up, and did what I should have from the start. I stood up and said, "Wait a minute." I walked next door to the office of a Bush political appointee who had still not been replaced. We were friends, and, more important, he was a DC lawyer. I told him about the FBI visit. He said, "Why are you talking to them? I am coming with you." We went to my office; my friend told the agents, "I am his attorney. Unless you tell us exactly what this is about, this interview is over. In the future, you talk to me first." He handed them his card, and glared at them for a few seconds; the agents looked at each other, gathered their stuff, rose, and left. We never heard anything more.

Who knows what that was about? I still got my pension and my house has not been raided at five in the morning . . . yet.

Not very exciting, I know, but that's all I got on this cold Monday morning. I'll have something more interesting later . . . I think.