American Elephants


How Jack Became Black by The Elephant's Child

This goes well with the Heather MacDonald post. We have long considered Race to be both a big deal and in some way defining, but if you give it a little serious thought, it is our bureaucracies at all levels that demand that we give race importance in places where it shouldn’t matter.  When my health insurance demanded to know what my race was, I got my back up, and refused. The bureaucracies demand to know, because they have to put it down on a list which will go on to higher levels of bureaucracy until it reaches the level where some senator can use the statistic in a speech.

This is a trailer for a film about which I know nothing more than this trailer. May be preachy and obnoxious, or may be good, but I thought the trailer was interesting. Do we add Elizabeth Warren to the discussion?

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Heather MacDonald on “The Diversity Delusion” by The Elephant's Child

Heather MacDonald spoke a couple of weeks ago at Hillsdale’s Washington DC outpost, about diversity, based on the research done for her new book The Diversity Delusion.  If you wonder why every college now seems to have a Diversity Office, as well as large groups of “snowflakes” and frequently gets into the news for some protest or riot, and is so sensitive that hearing something with which they disagree gives them major cases of the vapors, Heather explains. Her speeches have been protested, yet she speaks in favor of the police, the dismantling of what she properly calls “the diversity delusion.”

At a time when race seems to matter less and less, we talk about it more and more. We have a long and unfortunate history of assuming that race matters, and officialdom still wants to know just what our race is, even in situations where it does not and should not matter. It’s because we are run by a bureaucracy that wants to protect itself by keeping track.  It’s a very interesting speech, and eye-opening about the dysfunction on our college campuses. And yes, if you have kids now in college or soon to be, you need to be informed. Heather MacDonald always does her homework. She searches out the data and verifies it, and what she says can be taken to the bank.



Hurricanes Are Not Caused By “Climate Change.” Just Nature At Work. by The Elephant's Child

President Trump was asked by “60 Minutes” Leslie Stahl about Hurricane Florence: He said:

“I don’t know that it’s manmade. I will say this: I don’t want to give trillions and trillions of dollars. I don’t want to lose millions and millions of jobs.” … “I’m not denying climate change,” he said in the interview. “But it could very well go back. You know, we’re talking about over a … millions of years.”

“They say that we had hurricanes that were far worse than what we just had with Michael,” said Trump, who identified “they” as “people” after being pressed by “60 Minutes” correspondent Leslie Stahl. She asked, “What about the scientists who say it’s worse than ever?” the president replied, “You’d have to show me the scientists because they have a very big political agenda.

Well, you can imagine the outcry, Charles Schumer, distinguished Minority Leader of the United States Senate: “If we would do more on climate change, we’d have fewer of these hurricanes and other types of storms. Everyone knows that, except a few.” He added that The Trump administration has done nothing but “move the issue backward.”  Sorry, Senator. The president was actually scientifically, politically, and economically correct. Hurricanes are a natural phenomenon, unrelated to climate change.

“There is no trend in either intensity or frequency of hurricane strikes over the last 118 years. They have nothing to do with so called climate change. Out of the top 10 warmest Gulf of Mexico years since 1860, 7 occurred before 1970, which is before we experienced any significant warming”, according to Dr. Roy Spencer.

“So, all the “experts” can do is make vague claims about how major hurricanes like Michael are what we can expect more of in a warming world, but the data show that – so far at least – the data do not support the theory.”

The damage from Michael and Florence has been extensive, and to see so many houses flattened or disappeared is simply tragic, and the victims have our deepest sympathy. Federal aid and food and water start flowing in as rapidly as possible.

The Earth has been warming and cooling for millions of years “Global Warming” refers to the global-average temperature increase that has been observed over the last one hundred years or more. But to many politicians and the public, the term carries the implication that mankind is responsible for that warning. This website describes evidence from my group’s government-funded research that suggests global warming is mostly natural, and that the climate system is quite insensitive to humanity’s greenhouse gas emissions and aerosol pollution.

Believe it or not, very little research has ever been funded to search for natural mechanisms of warming…it has simply been assumed that global warming is manmade. This assumption is rather easy for scientists since we do not have enough accurate global data for a long enough period of time to see whether there are natural warming mechanisms at work. …

But first let’s examine the basics of why so many scientists think global warming is manmade. Earth’s atmosphere contains natural greenhouse gases (mostly water vapor, carbon dioxide, and methane) which act to keep the lower layers of the atmosphere warmer than they otherwise would be without those gases. Greenhouse gases trap infrared radiation — the radiant heat energy that the Earth naturally emits to outer space in response to solar heating. Mankind’s burning of fossil fuels (mostly coal, petroleum, and natural gas) releases carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and this is believed to be enhancing the Earth’s natural greenhouse effect. As of 2008, the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere was about 40% to 45% higher than it was before the start of the industrial revolution in the 1800’s. (Do read the whole thing, not long)

The President is visiting Florida and Georgia today, and the first responders and volunteers are working in a massive Federal response:

Here’s a look at that response, by the numbers:

  • A major on-the-ground operation: More than 16,000 Federal employees, including over 8,000 military personnel, have been deployed.
  • Search-and-rescue efforts underway: FEMA, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the National Guard are working alongside state responders and volunteers. As of this morning, they have completed 110 evacuations, 4,193 rescues/assists, 15,287 shelter-in-place checks, 128 animal assists, and 16,827 structural assessments.
  • Power restoration a top priority: More than 35,000 utility workers from 26 states are working to bring power back to impacted areas.
  • Food and water distribution: In Florida, FEMA has provided 715,000 meals and 1.5 million liters of water per day. FEMA has also transferred more than 350,000 meals to Georgia, and 30+ distribution sites are being supported.

The response to Hurricane Michael is continuing. Thousands of industry workers are restoring power and volunteers are serving hot meals and providing shelter and comfort. Over the weekend the president issued a major disaster declaration for Georgia, and additional disaster assistance for Florida. FEMA Disaster Survivor Assistance teams are knocking on door to help families register for assistance.The President has called for maximum relief. When asked about his biggest priority for the trip, he said “Just making sure everyone is safe and that they’re fed.”



The Beautiful City of Portland, Oregon by The Elephant's Child

Here’s a travelogue for the beautiful city of Portland, Oregon. It’s the city where the Columbia River and the Willamette River (pronounced will Lam et, not willa met) meet and the latter flows right through the middle of the city.

Residents say”don’t go downtown, it’s too dangerous” The problem seems to be Antifa, some kind of vicious organization that claims to be anti-fascist with no understanding of what is and is not  fascist. They dress up in black, particularly black masks to hide their identity, break windows, set fires, beat on cars and threaten ordinary residents who do not do what they are told. Very much like Nazi jackboots of another era. What they want is unclear, other than what they do, which is beyond unacceptable. The Portland Police have chosen to refrain from getting involved, so they just watch, supported by the Mayor,

Occasionally we have an Antifa outbreak in Seattle, when there seems to be something worth rioting about. I don’t know whether it’s the same bunch or not. I don’t know what, if anything, they advocate, other than causing trouble and damage. Significant terms in jail might help. But apparently you are not supposed to do anything about a violent mob of Leftist rioters — someone might get hurt.



Equal Opportunity, Not Equality! by The Elephant's Child

supreme-court

I read recently that California was trying to pass a law that required corporations to include a woman on their board of directors. Not sure if it was the State of California or the City of San Francisco, and I apparently did not write about it because I can’t find it. Feminists were delighted with the idea, but it was a very bad idea. If you require such a thing, it means that no woman will ever again be able to assume that she arrived at a board of directors position because of her skills and ideas and management ability — but because the law requires it.

That is what we have done to black Americans. We made laws that admitted them to universities based not on their own abilities, but because of their skin color. In many cases, we admitted young black people who were not really prepared for the college to which they were admitted under affirmative action regulations, and unsurprisingly flunked out.  We made laws or regulations that said you had to ignore the misbehavior in schools of black and Hispanic students because of the “school to prison pipeline”— and so you got a mass school shooting in Parkland, Florida.

Democrats base many of their campaigns on pushing for equality for all, but you cannot make all people equal. They are not. Human nature doesn’t work that way. The very best you can offer is equality of opportunity. We want you to be the best you can be with your own character, intelligence and gifts. We have free public schools, some far better than others, and if the one in your district is a bum one, we try to offer you the opportunity to go to a better one.

Ben Carson once said that he came from a neighborhood that you would be afraid to drive through. And he said that his mother saved him from getting killed on the streets — with a library card. And he went on to become a world famous surgeon and a member of the President’s cabinet as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. He took advantage of opportunity and rose to the pinnacle of society. Opportunity is there — undoubtedly imperfectly, but it’s there. We just have to teach kids how to take advantage of it. Which is another question entirely. Unfortunately, as parents, or just as adults , we don’t know what our kids don’t know. Our heads are filled with a lifetime of learning, but they are new to the business of life.

The Left has mostly given up on pushing affirmative action and switched to “Diversity” instead. But it comes under the same genre. If you get in because you are the right color, is that better than getting in because we have to take affirmative actions to make you equal?



“The Strange Death Of Europe” by The Elephant's Child

Here is another speech, a very good one, and important,by Douglas Murray.

Douglas Kear Murray (born 16 July 1979) is a British author, journalist, and political commentator. He is the founder of the Center for Social Cohesion and is an associate editor of The Spectator, a British magazine discussing culture and politics, and is the associate director of the Henry Jackson Society. (Yes, our own Scoop Jackson) Murray’s most recent book is The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam(2017).

Douglas Murray clearly identifies the strange case of the suicide of Europe, and how and why it is happening. The speech is a very real warning to America. We need to pay attention.

It’s all about guilt, the new theme of our Democratic Party, guilt for the misdeeds of our forbears, the shame of our past, and how (they think) we can redeem ourselves. Throw in political correctness and goofy feminism, racism, and a deep lack of understanding of history, with our Constitution, and  the overweening importance of power and control.



What Happened to California? by The Elephant's Child

Here is Victor Davis Hanson on Tucker Carlson’s program talking about their native state of California. Both were born and grew up in California. Victor Davis Hanson is the 6th generation living in the same house, with obviously a deep sense of family history.I have lived in California, on both sides of the Bay area, and in Southern California. As I often say, I can remember when anyone who did not live in San Francisco dressed up to go to the city. Now, Travel agents and event planners suggest avoiding San Francisco because of the prevalent feces on the sidewalks and the  needles and addicts also on the sidewalks. So how did a once beautiful city and a once ‘golden’ state go so haywire?

California is now a state with probably more billionaires than any other and definitely with the largest number of people in poverty. Jerry Brown is not rated as abjectly low as the governors of Oregon and Washington in fiscal discipline—but what is it with this coastal corridor? There are lessons to be learned here.




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