American Elephants


Hungry and Demoralized, ISIS Surrenders in Hawija by The Elephant's Child

Yesterday, off in corners of the internet which was all a-flame with the latest accusers of Harvey Weinstein, there was brief mention of the defeat of of ISIS in the northern Iraqi town of Hawija — one of its last strongholds in Iraq. Around 1,000 militants surrendered among signs that the terrorist group is falling apart and unable to defend its territory.

“They’re giving up,” said Lt. Gen. Paul Funk, who commands the coalition task force fighting the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. “Their leaders are abandoning them.”

The fall of Hawija in northern Iraq, after two weeks of fighting, is the latest in a string of defeats for the Islamic State, also known as ISIS, and suggests the rank-and-file fighters are demoralized as the group struggles to defend what remains of the territory it seized in 2014.

Hawija had been held by about 1,000 militants. As long as they held Hawija they could threaten Kirkuk, a major city east of the town. Coalition airstrikes have been ramping up attacks on the strongholds left in Iraq. Iraqi forces have been built up with help of U.S. arms and equipment, but the decision on when to launch ground operations is made by the Iraqi government.

In July, Iraq announced that Mosul, the country’s second-largest city, was retaken from ISIS after about nine months of intense fighting. Since that decisive battle, the pace of the Islamic State’s decline seems to have quickened.

U.S.-backed forces in Syria have recaptured about three-quarters of Raqqa, the ISIS headquarters, after about four months of fighting in the city.

ISIS reputation for the willingness to fight to the last man and never surrender seems to be gone. Surrendering forces came out with their hands up, saying their leaders have abandoned them. They haven’t been fed and haven’t been paid. Last week the ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi released an audio demanding his fighters to continue the battle, but they don’t seem to be paying attention.

The fall of Harvey Weinstein may be just as important as the fall of Hawija, but was anyone surprised? Hollywood has long been known as a cesspool. His disgusting trail of victims may be long, but ISIS has been trying to terrorize the world into submission. Beheadings and placing victims in iron cages to drown or burn to death didn’t seem to be a way to entice people to accept Islam. But that is in the far away Middle East, and Weinstein and kneeling football millionaires are here and local.

I don’t know that anyone, at this point, expects the media to act responsibly.

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It’s Come to This: It’s Time to Ban Trucks! by The Elephant's Child

Gun Control seems to remain as a feature of the conversation. Conservatives keep explaining (and explaining ) that guns are inanimate objects, and it is the shooter who is the problem, but they will have none of that. It’s the guns they want to control. (Since they seem to think Conservatives live in the backwoods of Southern states and are uneducated hicks, possibly they are afraid we will break out of our hideaways and attack them with our guns?)

I was reminded that a large truck, driven by a Muslim immigrant, plowed into a crowd of people in the southern French city of Nice, killed at least 83 people and left 18 in critical condition. It wounded 458.

The scene in Nice was one of devastation, with the heavy-duty white truck stalled amid the bloodshed on the street, its windows smashed and riddled with bullets from police gunfire.

“I saw bodies flying like bowling pins along its route. Heard noises, cries that I will never forget,” he wrote.

Well, clearly, we should ban trucks. Same mindset.



The Radical Left, Exposed by The Elephant's Child
October 4, 2017, 6:27 am
Filed under: Crime, Law, Media Bias, News, Police, Politics, Progressives, Terrorism | Tags: , ,

Whenever there is a tragic shooting, the Left is ready with their talking points because they have hauled out the gun control theme so often that it is well developed. Gun control has enormous appeal to the Left as its message, because they believe deeply in the efficacy of control.

Much of the Left’s basic program is about control in its many forms, and since Republicans are known as major supporters of gun rights, the Second Amendment (which needs to be repealed) and the NRA. Republicans are low-class rednecks from the deep South, and former members of the military who may have PTSD. They are known to possess dangerous weapons like machine guns, and pose a significant danger to the gentle, peaceful, highly educated people on the Left.

I’m coming to believe that the prompt appearance of talking points, the right words to use, and easy ways to attack Trump, means that those on the Left gratefully don’t have to bother with a lot of reading. With the themes all developed for them, they don’t have to pay much attention to what the other side says. They know they are correct, because they are highly educated, compassionate, empathetic, good people, and those racist, sexist, nasty homophobes are not.

This leaves Leftists in an awkward position because they are not prepared for logical response or probing questions from Conservatives who actually have studied up, searched for the latest statistics, and comments from well informed people. But by then, time will have passed, new talking points will appear and attention will move to other subjects.

Republicans, in general, have not caught on to the focus-group tested vocabulary. They are usually more concerned with central ideas, and will not notice that they are using some focus-group-tested words. An example is calling the illegal alien ‘children’— “Dreamers” who were brought here “against their will”, and they are always described as “children,” though the cut-off age was under 31. They are never described as ‘illegal’ but instead as “undocumented.” ABC in a careless moment called them “undocumented citizens.” That sums up the language problem.

Border agents say that probably 40% to 50 % are fraudulent, but that is not an official statistic. Many lied about their age. Current border crossers have children with them, but they are, so far, not included in the DACA group. Most moms who have raised children know that saying “Well, just this once” is  recipe for disaster.

Any amnesty is an insult to those who have applied legally, following the rules, and are waiting patiently for their turn to be admitted. There is a limit for the number of immigrants who can be admitted in any one year. There are around 4.4 million people on the wait list.



Hungary Has Built a Wall, And Cut Illegal Immigration by Over 99 Percent by The Elephant's Child

Hungary, fiercely resisting the European Union’s order to freely admit asylum-seekers, has built a wall. Observing the problems in Germany and Sweden and the 2015 Paris terrorists who made their way through Hungary with some deadly consequences, Hungary  has built twin fences, with frequent watchtowers, manned with thousands of newly recruited border guards. It was faster than building a solid wall, but illegal immigration has slowed dramatically. The fences have caused illegal immigration to collapse from 391,000 in 2015 to 18,236 in 2016 — to just 1,184 in 2017.

After Germany’s Angela Merkel welcomed migrants, announced that there was “no limit” to the number of asylum-seekers that Germany would accept, the flow increased to a torrent. Sweden has been called a “failed state”. Migrants often claim to be “children” to get asylum, but they are well into their twenties. Setting cars on fire seems to be a popular pastime. There are “no go” zones, more than 60, where ambulances must be accompanied by police. Rape is common and even small children, both boys and girls, are raped.

It seems to be a matter of mindset, and language. There is great fear of being called “racist” or “Islamophobic,” though the nation will not admit the disastrous Islamization. Unpleasant news is whitewashed. The Swedes have chosen a path of cultural and societal suicide that is probably the worst in Europe. There are 200 criminal networks, with an estimated 5,000 members. The government is in complete denial, the legal system punishes those who tell the truth, and the major TV, radio and print outlets parrot the government line and ignore uncomfortable news developments. How then can they avoid the clear indication that the “migrants” intend to make Sweden an Islamic country, subject to Sharia law? The government prefers to think of a multicultural idyll. Admitting that you were wrong is far too difficult. Swedish judges care more about the safety of foreign rapists than the safety of Swedish children. They refuse to return these monsters to their own countries for fear that they might be put in danger. It is complete denial.

The UN has slammed Hungary and their “very clear intention” to halt illegal immigration, and criticized their border wall for “looking unwelcoming.” Well, yes. Exactly. That is the object.



Vice President Pence Spoke Today at a Ceremony of Remembrance, on a field at Shanksville, PA. by The Elephant's Child



Conflict, Delusions, Visions, Madness by The Elephant's Child

In Charlottesville, Virginia, a college town, protesters were attempting to tear down a confederate memorial and counter protesters variously described as neo-Nazis, KKK members, white nationalists, with Antifa, and Black Lives Matter.

Leftist news sources immediately  began referring to “white supremacists” to make the whole thing about race. The left has made a great effort to describe President Trump as “a racist president” (he isn’t) though that is simply their defensive cover, always calling any republicans “racist” to disguise their own long history as southern slave holders, Confederates,  opponents of reconstruction, opponents of full citizenship for blacks, and desegregation.

One of the curious things about political opinions is how often the same people line up on opposite sided of different issues. The issues themselves may have no intrinsic connection with each other.They may range from military spending to drug laws to monetary policy to education. Yet the same familiar faces can be found glaring at each other from opposite sides of the political fence, again and again. It happens too often to be coincidence and it is too uncontrolled to be a plot. A closer look at the arguments on both sides often shows that they are reasoning from fundamentally different premises. These different premises—often implicit—are what provide the consistency behind the repeated opposition of individuals and groups on numerous, unrelated issues. They have different visions of how the world works.  (emphasis added)

That’s Thomas Sowell: A Conflict of Visions: Ideological Origins of Political Struggles, 1987.

He goes on to explain that”the ever-changing kaleidoscope of raw reality would defeat the human mind by its complexity, except for the mind’s ability to abstract, to pick out parts and think of them as a whole. This is nowhere more necessary than in social visions and social theory, dealing with the complex and often subconscious interactions of millions of human beings.

We talk of “Trump Derangement Syndrome” to try to explain what is going on, but the thing is better described in a book by Charles Mackay written in 1841: Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds  still available at Amazon. He writes about economic bubbles, the crusades, witch mania, alchemists, the tulip mania, fortune-telling and haunted houses. The book can be downloaded from the Library of Economics and Liberty for free.

An article from the Center for Inquiry contains more recent examples including the Salem Witch Trials, the Orson Welles broadcast of an alien invasion story, and a Seattle Windshield Pitting Epidemic in 1954.

Thursday, Scott Adams (creator of Dilbert) posted an excellent article on his blog “How to Know You’re In a Mass Hysteria Bubble”.

The most visible Mass Hysteria of the moment involves the idea that the United States intentionally elected a racist President. If that statement just triggered you, it might mean you are in the Mass Hysteria bubble. The cool part is that you can’t fact-check my claim you are hallucinating if you are actually hallucinating. But you can read my description of the signs of mass hysteria and see if you check off the boxes.

If you’re in the mass hysteria, recognizing you have all the symptoms of hysteria won’t help you be aware you are in it. That’s not how hallucinations work. Instead, your hallucination will automatically rewrite itself to expel any new data that conflicts with its illusions. …

The reason you can’t easily identify what-the-hell is going on in the country right now is that a powerful mass hysteria is in play. If you see the signs after I point them out, you’re probably not in the hysteria bubble. If you read this and do NOT see the signs, it probably means you’re trapped inside the mass hysteria bubble.

This latter one is probably the most important link, because he is talking about understanding today and today’s bubbles. But Tom Sowell’s A Conflict of Visions belongs in your library.



Bill Whittle With a Little Historical Fact by The Elephant's Child

On Tuesday, President Trump held an impromptu press conference at Trump Tower. When he was asked about the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia,he branded the members of the KKK, neo-Nazis and white supremacists and Antifa activists as “criminals and thugs.” The leftist media, promptly went ballistic. AP insisted that the antifas were just “protesting” the white supremacists, which is why they arrived with baseball bats, axe handles, and clubs.

The Associated Press wants the public to believe that Trump’s statements were a disaster:

The president’s comments effectively wiped away the more conventional statement he delivered at the White House one day earlier when he branded members of the KKK, neo-Nazis and white supremacists who take part in violence as “criminals and thugs.”

The president’s retorts Tuesday suggested he had been a reluctant participant in that cleanup effort. During an impromptu press conference in the lobby of his Manhattan skyscraper, he praised his original response to Charlottesville and angrily blamed liberal groups in addition to white supremacists for the violence. Some of those protesting the rally to save a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee were “also very violent,” he said.

The leftist media went on to claim that the brave Antifa members were like the young GIs who invaded Normandy on D-Day to fight fascism. We had a strong hunch that the current herd of leftist reporters were more than a little wanting in their knowledge of history. It’s not just Trump Derangement Syndrome extremism, it’s sheer ignorance.




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