American Elephants


All the News That’s Fit, and Quite a Bit that Isn’t by The Elephant's Child

Newsy day! We have had one death from Coronavirus here in Washington State, apparently with some Korean connection. Joe Biden has won the South Carolina caucus. Corona beer has NO Connection to the virus with “corona” in the name. I know it’s hard, but try to pay attention and not get panicky.

Democrats are trying their hardest to make President Trump responsible for the Coronavirus, but they are, as usual, making no sense, and lying through their teeth. You need to understand that the Democrats believe themselves to be morally superior and thus entitled to be in charge of, well, everything! They are morally superior because they care.

For example, they care about anyone in Mexico who wants to cross the border, and assume that we should allow them in because they might have coronavirus, and we need to help them. Most sane Americans would admit that Mexico has a number of cases of coronavirus, a number of deaths, and that Mexico has an obligation to take care of their own people, which they are trying to do.  We do not have any obligation to open up our borders to anyone from another country.  Elizabeth Warren has proposed a “Bill to Take All Money From Trump’s ‘Racist Wall,’ Give to HHS to Fight Coronavirus.” Some polls suggest that Elizabeth Warren might not win her own state of Massachusetts. “Racist Wall” ??? A President of the United States’ first responsibility is to the people of his own country, not to the citizens of Mexico, nor of all the other countries’ citizens trying to illegally cross the border. If Warren does not understand that basic fact, she has no business considering herself qualified to run for anything. There is a legal way to come to America and become a citizen. You apply, and wait your turn.

AOC, who never fails to demonstrate her ignorance, was outraged (isn’t she always?) that Vice President Pence, appointed to lead the Coronavirus program, said he would pray as he took on the effort. He is a religious man, and of course would pray for help in doing an important job. AOC promptly announced “Mike Pence literally does not believe in science. It is utterly irresponsible to put him in charge of US coronavirus response as the world sits on the cusp of a pandemic.” Well we all make silly mistakes, Hank Johnson worried about Guam tipping over. Just refrain from suggesting that the folks serving in government are our “betters.”

We elect people to serve us in government so we don’t have to do it. They want to serve because it’s a good paying job with all sorts of benefits, among which are lots of attention from the media, and if you get to be some sort of celebrity, there are even more benefits that involve recognition, name familiarity, and maybe a book deal somewhere down the road, aside from being able to steer business to your family. We have to keep an eye on them, and, if they get too far out of line, elect someone else.

Joe Biden has won the caucus in South Carolina as I said, in spite of getting a little confused about whether he was running for the Senate or the Presidency. It helps to maintain a good sense of humor regarding politics, but it’s hard when one candidate announces that he is a socialist. Socialist/Communist, there’s not much difference. If you don’t know what the term “socialist” means, it’s time to seriously educate yourself. The public schools and our colleges and universities will not do it for you. The universities are staffed with those who got deferments for being in school as they protested the Vietnam War, and a college education doesn’t mean what it once did. Head to your public library, look for The Black Book of Communism, The Gulag Archipelago, The Passing of an Illusion, Property and Freedom, Mao, or any of dozens of books explaining what “socialism” really is. Socialism does not mean free health care, or anything else free for that matter. It costs more than can be endured.

*I don’t know the source of this image, but it expresses the reality clearly



Coronavirus: What You Need to Know And Where to Find It by The Elephant's Child

Of course we should have expected it, but it’s hard to attribute such lowlife characteristics to your fellow Americans. Democrats are now blaming President Trump for failing to prepare enough or even adequately for the advent of the Coronavirus. Trump Derangement Syndrome knows no limits. Nancy Pelosi is leading the charge. Seeking political advantage out of any occurrence in the world just comes naturally, I guess. The president’s quick action to prevent travelers coming from China, closing the border made a good start. People at real risk have been quarantined.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) activated its Emergency Operations Center (EOC) on Monday, January 20, 2020 in order to support public health partners in responding to the outbreak caused by a new coronavirus first identified in Wuhan, China.

Here is the website for the CDC with what you should know: How it spreads, the symptoms, prevention, and treatment, testing and constant situation updates. There is information for communities, schools and businesses, healthcare professionals, health departments and travelers. Go to the most authoritative source for correct information, read it all twice, and refer back often for updates.



President Trump Goes to India by The Elephant's Child

Of course, the obligatory visit to the Taj Mahal, a stunningly beautiful building built of white marble. It is a mausoleum on the south bank of the Yamuna river in the Indian city of Agra.

It was commissioned in 1632 by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan who reigned from 1628 to 1658, to house the tomb of his favorite wife, Muntaz Mahal, and also contains the tomb of Shah Jahan himself. It is the centerpiece of 42 acres that contains a mosque and a guest house, and is set in formal gardens bounded on three sides by a crenellated wall. Muntaz Mahal died while giving birth to their 14th child in 1631. Her death left the emperor heartbroken, and his hair was said to have turned grey overnight. The construction began in 1632.

Here are the pictures from the President’s visit It’s fun to scroll through them. There’s a picture that’s my favorite of a man mounted on a camel, man and camel decorated lavishly with flowers. The camel seems to be smiling in a funny grin, and the gentleman riding him is carrying a Tuba, which he obviously plays at some point.

When you reach the end, do not click on the <2 or 3> which is just a repeat of what you already saw, unless, of course you want to see it all again.



Why Do Democrats Hate President Trump? II by The Elephant's Child

Continuing! President Trump is returning home after a triumphal trip to India with a tumultuous welcome in a packed world’s largest cricket stadium from an overflowing, 100,000+ cheering crowd. Democrats really hate that. Trump and Prime Minister Modi hugged. The hatred is completely irrational, but they expect everyone else to hate him as they do.

They really hate his claims (which are completely accurate) of a booming economy, with jobs for anyone who wants to work. Bernie is building his campaign on poor Americans out of work, needing all kinds of government-supplied help and free stuff. Capitalism, of course, is what creates a booming economy, and the captains of industry are those who supply it, but Democrats see only rich men who don’t need those big salaries. Our young people have clearly not learned either history or civics, or for that matter — basic economics. Bernie apparently thinks that his “socialism” is what is practiced in the Scandinavian countries, but he’s wrong on that as well. Sweden is ranked as one of the most market-oriented economies in the world in 2019, just behind the United States.

A federal appeals court has handed a major win to the Trump administration in it’s fight against “sanctuary” jurisdictions. The administration is deploying Border Patrol agents to sanctuary jurisdictions across the country to help Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) track down and detain illegal immigrants freed by left-wing cities and states. Democrats want mostly open borders because new immigrants are apt (or can be persuaded) to vote Democrat. The court has ruled that the administration can deny grant money to those states that refuse to cooperate with federal immigration authorities. Chris King, from Pima County, Arizona explained why the county on the border voted not to become a sanctuary county.

H.R. 5383, the “New Way Forward Act” which has 44 co-sponsors, would effectively eviscerate immigration enforcement not only at the border. but also in the interior of the United States. Read that one and become truly frightened. Never mind the report yesterday about an 11 year-old little girl being raped by an illegal immigrant, or the report that the drugs seized in 6 of the largest fentanyl busts were enough to kill 229 million Americans, without even considering the coronavirus potential.

One begins to wonder if any Democrats have any understanding of basic economics, let alone the perils of illegal immigration. The most recent debate would make one think they do not. Democrats like to think well of themselves and their objectives, so they base it all on their compassion and caring. They are caring people, so they want more illegals to enjoy the freedom of America (and do the scut work so they can hire cheap labor). Not much concern for the citizens of Cuba or Nicaragua who might like to come to the U.S. They have experienced Communism and would hardly support it again, and might actually vote Republican. Can’t have that.



Why Do the Democrats Hate Trump So Much? by The Elephant's Child

Bernie seems to be the leading Democrat candidate at present, and the Democrats are horrified. The object of the entire Democrat campaign is to get rid of Donald Trump, and they don’t think Bernie has much of a chance to defeat him. The Democrats really, really hate Donald Trump. But the commentary out there is interesting.

The Manhattan Contrarian said flatly:”If You Can’t Articulate A Limiting Principle On Government Expansion, You Get Bernie Sanders.” That was his headline, and he added:

Well, if you’re the party of free stuff, why shouldn’t the guy who offers the most free stuff win? Bernie is clearly willing to outbid all of his rivals in the free stuff auction. What makes you think anybody can beat him by just bidding less?

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez announced her endorsement for the 2020 presidential election. She called for “publicly owned and run health care and education so that we have more freedom over our lives than the private sector provides.”

Brian Riedl, writing in City Journal on October 15, 2019 commiserated with Bernie’s heart attack, and said as long as he remains in the race, it’s worth taking his policy ideas seriously, since he has unveiled expensive new spending proposals on a near-weekly basis. All told, Sanders’s current plans would cost as much as $97.5 trillion over the next decade, and total government spending at all levels would surge to as high as 70 percent of gross domestic product. Approximately half of the American workforce would be employed by the government. The ten-year budget deficit would approach $90 trillion, with average annual deficits exceeding 30 percent of GDP.

And Victor Davis Hanson said yesterday, “Universities Breed Anger, Ignorance, and Ingratitude” “In turning out woke and broke graduates, they have a lot to answer for.”

When you get history and economics all mixed up with “social justice”, you are creating a major problem. I reject the idea that there is any such thing as “social justice” and if you go off chasing it, you are never going to arrive at a destination. It’s nice to dream of a world where nobody is poor, everybody has what they want and need, but that’s not how it works. Life is hard, bad stuff happens, there are accidents, illness, deaths, wars, family troubles, and you have to learn to cope. You don’t succeed by waiting for somebody else to fix things for you. The joy and the pride of arriving at a goal make the coping all worthwhile. We currently have an economy where most anyone that wants a job can find one. The rising is up to you.



The Most Famous War Picture in U.S. History by The Elephant's Child

It was 75 years ago that the Yanks raised the flag on Iwo Jima Isle, on the top of Mt. Suribachi, the island’s most strategic peak, and as the song of the time goes, “there were tears in their hearts though they smiled.” And it has become the iconic memorial statue for the United States Marines. Iwo Jima was a bad one, a brutal battle. The first flag was too small, so they got a bigger one. AP photographer Joe Rosenthal captured the moment in what became one of the most famous war pictures in U.S. history

ADDENDUM: Iwo Jima was an essential in the U.S. island-hopping strategy in the Pacific, for it’s air base from which our planes could reach Japan. The Japanese were dug in, literally, on the island in a maze of tunnels from which they could fire on our troops, while protected themselves.



Last Night’s Vicious Democrat Debate by The Elephant's Child

Democratic Debate last night. I did not watch, since I think they’re all loons. It was apparently a vicious time with everybody attacking everybody else. Bloomberg, Biden and Sanders all lead in different primary states.

President Donald Trump’s “Hire American,” low-immigration policy is giving American employees a larger share of company profits, so the federal government should raise the supply of foreign workers, according to a mournful editorial column in the Wall Street Journal.

“Corporate profits have been declining as employers increase wages to hire scarce blue-collar workers … corporate profits could soon drop to historic lows, which could reduce business investment and GDP growth,” says the editorial board’s complaint, titled “America’s Disappearing Workers.”

The candidates are not doing their homework, nor are their staffs. They  hardly seem to know what is going on in the country. Part of it is illusion, about the Russians, the President, and of course the panic about climate doom. Nobody seems to want to study up on what the scientists have to say, if the saintly Greta Thunberg says it’s a problem, well there you go. Straight from the mouth of an autistic 17 year old.

Start with this: “Over 440 Scientific Papers Published in 2019 Support a skeptical position on Climate Alarm.” There is a great deal of doubt that anthropogenic CO² emissions function as the control knob  of the climate. As I have remarked many times before, back in 2015, Christiana Figueres, who was general secretary of the IPCC  (the International Panel on Climate Change) in early February remarked in a news conference that the object of the Climate Crisis was not to save the Earth from climate doom, but as the best chance they had to eliminate Capitalism from the world. And do read the post just below by Ian Plimer, about the history of world climate.

Bernie Sanders, Socialist candidate, wants to eliminate fracking, apparently unaware that the replacement of large amounts of oil and gasoline with clean natural gas has meant that the United States has eliminated more CO² than any other nation on earth, because of the vast plenitude of natural gas made available by the technique of fracking. I’m rather fond of Capitalism myself.  Our huge supplies of natural gas are quite damaging to the Russian economy, and Iran, for they count on selling their oil to the Europeans, who would much rather have clean natural gas.

If you’ve got Fareed Zakaria doubting you, maybe there’s some hope.



President’s Day is Tomorrow, Monday the 17th of February by The Elephant's Child

George Washington Portrait, Gilbert-Stuart, 1795

This year President’s Day is on Monday, the 17th. It was designed to honor George Washington’s birthday which is actually on the 22nd, but then they decided to add in the rest of the presidents so no one would be excluded, and to stop any vast array of birthdays of presidents around the calendar. Trump is the 45th president, so you can see the problem, and just imagine the outcry if we deigned to set aside a special day to honor Donald John Trump, however much he might deserve it.

If you are interested in our first president, and the leader of the army in the Revolution, you can read past pieces about Washington in our archives, especially the ones about his image, and the conspiracy behind that. There’s an image at the head of one that is a “forensic reconstruction“, and some biographies are recommended.

If  you have a dollar bill handy, especially a fairly crisp one, compare the portrait of Washington on the dollar bill with the image at the head of American Elephants today. That’s because artist Gilbert Stuart was unkind to George Washington because Washington was more annoyed than grateful that Stuart was painting his picture. The face on the dollar bill comes from Stuart’s mean portrait. Even the reconstruction is surely faulty since Washington had spent years outdoors in all kinds of weather, with fair skin, lots of sunburns and lots of wrinkles, which do alter the appearance. Every classroom when I was growing up had a portrait of Lincoln and Washington, and a flag in the corner to which we all pledged allegiance. There is a generation that learned their history from Howard Zinn, and consequently don’t know that America really is a special country.*

I don’t know if there are any employers who give a day off for President’s Day, but that could be another 3 day weekend which are very nice, but not so much in mid February.

*If you were unfortunate enough to grow up with Howard Zinn’s “history” a must-read is Mary Grabar’s new book Debunking Howard Zinn, in which the author exposes and documents the multitude of lies, bad sources, and deliberate falsehoods Zinn used to influence a generation to think that America is nothing special. They’re probably the same ones now favoring the old socialist Bernie Sanders who lures them in with phony promises of making everybody equal and universal health care, and paying off their student loans. Fat chance.



Ian Plimer Explains Climate Change and Earth’s History by The Elephant's Child

Ian Plimer is a distinguished Australian scientist. He is a professor of Geology at the University of Adelaide, the author of 6 books and many scientific papers. Two of his books question the validity of man-made climate change. This is dangerous territory, for you will quickly be labeled a “Denier”, or guilty of “wrong think.”

There are huge amounts of money involved in the Climate Change battle. The climate, of course, has been changing for millions of years. There are dry years, long cold winters, and short winters with poor skiing and big losses for ski resorts. We have the strange example of Greta Thunberg who is now a foundation, AOC is plumping for the “Green New Deal”, a disastrously stupid idea, and she wants to abolish “fracking” which is responsible for lowering the amount of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere more than any other country in the world, and allows us to use more clean natural gas in place of sooty coal for heating our homes and businesses.

When you start telling people that the climate will end life as we know it in just 10 or 12 years, people don’t know what to do and are frightened, and don’t know where to turn. Then the news is filled with images of what seems to be Australia burning up, (the fires are ‘contained’ and no longer a crisis) so you add in the hurricanes and tornadoes and start to believe that we must DO SOMETHING right now. Politicians who hope to be re-elected start promising electric cars and buses (I’ve read that  electric cars don’t work in the cold, but don’t know if it’s true) and building wind farms and vast solar arrays which don’t do much for our energy. Australia has regular problems with bush fires, hurricanes have nothing to do with climate, and the 2017 survey of polar bears proves once again that they are fine and multiplying nicely. What one needs to do is study up. Find out just who are the scientists who know and understand  what we do know and what we don’t. Ian Plimer is one of the good ones, as are William Happer, Richard Lindzen, Roy Spencer , John Christie, and many others. Read Climate Depot, Watts Up With That, and Roy Spencer’s blog regularly and you will start becoming knowledgeable.

Ian Plimer will start you off nicely with a geologic history of the Earth.

This is a very long video, but invaluable. I cannot urge you strongly enough to make the time to watch the whole thing. You will learn about the entire history of climate, about the deplorable current climate panic, that is basically a political ploy, not science.Professor Plimer is an excellent explainer.

Christiana Figures, who was general secretary of the IPCC  (the International Panel on Climate Change) announced at a news conference back in early February of 2015, that the object of the “climate crisis” was not to save the Earth from the degradation of a climate disaster, but to eliminate Capitalism. Much of the world hates our wealth and booming economy, the wealth of goods produced, and the way we go around the world trying to “help” other countries, tell them what to do, or just disapprove of them. They might learn that the source of our wealth and thriving economy is capitalism, and they too could share in it’s blessings. But that, in turn, might mean unpleasant things like freedom and elections and the rule of law.



More Than You Ever Wanted to Know About St.Valentine’s Day by The Elephant's Child
February 15, 2020, 12:29 am
Filed under: Heartwarming, History, Humor, Politics | Tags: , ,

What an odd holiday Valentine’s Day is! Stopped by Safeway on the way home, and the store was festooned with Valentine’s Day balloons, and of course, all sorts of flowers, and lots of candy, preferably in red heart boxes for those busy gentlemen on their way home who didn’t dare arrive empty handed.

Online at home, I was startled by this picture  at Powerline blog. Took me right back to grade school. Nasty little candies festooned with idiot sayings. All the kids got a big very cheap packet of valentines, that you punched out of  cardboard sheets, to put in the class Valentine box, usually something like a hatbox, decorated by the teacher with a slot in the top. Some kids gave a valentine to everybody, some just to their close friends, and it was a test of popularity to see who got the most cards. I’d forgotten, it was so long ago.

But who was St. Valentine and why do we celebrate him with heart-shaped boxes of candy? He was apparently some sort of priest or even a bishop in the 3rd Century in Rome, born around AD 226. He died on February 14, 269. He ministered to persecuted Christians, was martyred and his body buried at a Christian cemetery on the Via Flamina close to the Ponte Milvio to the north of Rome. Relics of him were kept in the Church and Catacombs of San Valentino in Rome, which remained an important pilgrim site throughout the Middle Ages. February 14 has been observed  as the Feast of Saint Valentine since 496 AD.  From Wikipedia:

The Catholic Encyclopedia and other hagiographical sources speak of three Saints Valentine that appear in connection with February 14. One was a Roman priest, another the bishop of Interamna (modern Terni, Italy) both buried along the Via Flaminia outside Rome, at different distances from the city. The third was said to be a saint who suffered on the same day with a number of companions in the Roman province of Africa, of whom nothing else is known.

Though the extant accounts of the martyrdoms of the first two listed saints are of a late date and contain legendary elements, a common nucleus of fact may underlie the two accounts and they may refer to a single person. According to the official biography of the Diocese of Terni, Bishop Valentine was born and lived in Interamna and while on a temporary stay in Rome he was imprisoned, tortured, and martyred there on February 14, 269. His body was hastily buried at a nearby cemetery and a few nights later his disciples retrieved his body and returned him home.

There seem to be around seven different St. Valentines. The Roman Emperor Claudius took a liking to Valentinus until Valentinus tried to convince him to embrace Christianity, when Claudius refused, and condemned Valentinius to either renounce his faith or he would be beaten with clubs and beheaded. Valentinius refused and was executed in that manner, on February 14 in 269.

Valentinius artifacts (including his bones) have traveled as far as Ireland, where believers and lovers and tourists come, particularly on Valentines’ Day. His body, in 269, was hastily buried at a nearby cemetery and a few nights later his disciples retrieved his body and returned him home.

Saint Valentinius, one account runs, wrote a letter to Asterius’s daughter signed “from your valentine,”which is where the cards come from. Lots of legends have been added to the story.  One says that Valentine secretly performed Christian weddings for couples, allowing the husbands involved to escape conscription.  Supposedly, in order to remind these men of their vows and God ‘s love, Valentinius cut hearts from parchment giving them to these soldiers and persecuted Christians, possibly the origin of the use of hearts on St. Valentine’s Day.

Somewhere under all that is a true story, embroidered and vaguely historical that results in heart-shaped boxes of candy, sugary sweet Valentine cards, and husbands rushing to the grocery store on their way home from work to appear with an armload of flowers and a red heart box of candy, for the love of their life.



Happy Valentine’s Day! by American Elephant
February 14, 2020, 2:38 am
Filed under: Humor, Pop Culture | Tags: , ,

Valentines Elephants

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Being of the male of the species, I’ve never much understood the importance some place on the holiday. Let’s face it, Valentine’s Day is nothing more than a concoction of the greeting-card industry to promote the sales of schmaltzy valentines. And as a holiday, it’s kind of a rip-off — if even the most perfectly executed Valentine’s Day gesture doesn’t excuse one from being romantic the rest of the year, then, really, what’s the point?

That said, I should point out that Elephants are known to be very partial to chocolate truffles.

[reposted from previous years]



Democrats Just Want To Be In Control by The Elephant's Child

Do you subscribe to any magazines anymore? When I was growing up we subscribed to Time, Life, Fortune,The Saturday Evening Post, and Readers Digest. Since magazines have gone online, we read real magazines at the doctor’s office and the hairdressers. Magazines are suffering, and have decided to make the articles that they expect to attract attention available only to “subscribers”. Which is interesting. I visit about 20 some websites every day, and if I had to subscribe to all of them to find out what is going on it would be far more expensive than I would care to pay. I understand that they need to pay their writers, and advertising is not bringing in the desired revenue.

I visited The Atlantic today. I was familiar with the magazine as being out there, but I had never read it before. Since I live on the West Coast, the name of the magazine was not enticing. Another East Coast rag that talks sneeringly about the rest of the country, as if anything that transpires in the other part of the country is not worthy of interest. Surprise! I was right. Hard Left, Trump-hating, and today with a plan to create more states so they have permanent Democratic control of the country. I had never considered trying to eliminate the other political party permanently, but they do.

The major problem with the Democratic Party is that they don’t understand human nature. Human nature being what it is, we need a government to manage the big things that we cannot manage as individuals, or even groups of individuals. Humans want to control things, fix them their way, make people do what we want and in the way we think they should act. We don’t want to be taxed, we want someone else to pay, we want our people in charge, permanently, We want excellent health care, but we don’t want to pay for it, we want good roads and good transportation, we want public safety, but no laws that cause us problems, and so on. If someone asked you how you would fix the government, given your own preferences, what would you change? Or how would you fix your community? Or your neighborhood? (There’s a constantly barking dog across the street.) There is no consensus on the perfect government at any level — everybody has their own choices, and you have to put up with a lot that you really don’t like. Democrats really, really don’t like Donald Trump, as they make quite clear, but they are prepared to go to extremes to remove him, though he’s doing a remarkably good job. (Nancy Pelosi just declared that all those things he claimed to have accomplished were lies.)

The founders were quite aware of the foibles of human nature and tried to write the Constitution in a way that would allow for it and cope with the excess. The idea that the Constitution says that the popular vote doesn’t count because the Electoral College was devised to see that all of the states had an equal voice, so that the big populous states could not cancel the vote of smaller states. That simple fact drives Democrats nuts, and they want to rewrite the Constitution so that it all depends on the popular vote — as long as that would let them win.




%d bloggers like this: