American Elephants


The Unintended Consequences of the War on the Police by The Elephant's Child
May 22, 2015, 6:22 am
Filed under: Democrat Corruption, Policing, The Epidemic | Tags: , , ,

Jonathan Tobin has an essential essay at Commentary magazine’ Contentions blog, on “The Real Victims of the War on Police.”

From last summer’s disturbances in Ferguson, Missouri to the more recent riots in Baltimore, the country has been engaged in a debate about police violence that has hinged on accusations of systematic racism. Regardless of the findings about the shooting in Ferguson or the racial identity of the Baltimore officers charged in the death of Freddie Gray, a narrative about police racism has become entrenched in our popular culture that has remained impervious to reason or the facts. One of the consequences of this war on police that has been encouraged by statements coming from the very top of our government, including the president and the attorney general, have been incidents of violence against police. When officers go down that generates some attention, yet less discussed is the way the lives of people in poverty-stricken minority neighborhoods are affected by this attempt to blame the nation’s ills on white racism. But as the Wall Street Journal reports today, it is precisely they who are suffering as arrests have gone down in Baltimore in the last month while violent crime has increased dramatically.

In the weeks after Gray’s death as scrutiny and criticism of the Baltimore police has intensified, arrests have gone down by a rate of 40 percent when compared to the same period of time in 2013 and 2014. What makes this figure so startling is that it includes the hundreds that were arrested during the riots that rocked portions of the city. At the same time, violence in the Western district of the city where the riots occurred has gone up in a way far outpacing the increase in the rest of the city.

What’s happened here is obvious. Nothing can or should excuse alleged police misbehavior and if the six officers — three white and three African-Americans — are convicted of responsibility for Gray’s death while in their custody, they will deserve to be harshly punished. But the willingness of so many people, both on the streets and on the airwaves, to take it as a given that the cops are alien invaders who must be resisted has made it difficult if not impossible for them to do their jobs. The whole essay is here.

What is clear is that there is no “epidemic” of black men dying at the hands of police. The epidemic, Jason Riley says, is of “Young black men dying at the hands of other black men.” But nobody wants to talk about that. Nor do they want to talk about the news that the protesters in Ferguson were bussed in from groups like New Black Panthers, ANSWER and the US Human Rights Network, Now they are complaining that they never got paid. MORE owed the protesters money.

There are always unintended consequences. When the administration makes claims of police brutality, the police are afraid to make arrests. That means that more crime is ignored or excused. Democrats really don’t get incentives nor think about unintended consequences. They are concerned with empathy, and they care about poor black people. They will happily vote for more funds for the schools though. That’s why Baltimore has some of the highest expenditure on students in the country. And nothing will change, nothing at all.



Familiar (or not) Quotations — Worth Repeating! by The Elephant's Child
May 19, 2015, 1:44 pm
Filed under: Democrat Corruption, Domestic Policy, Economy, Freedom, Politics | Tags: , , ,

childPoverty-image

This Robert Heinlein quote may be familiar, or not, but it is certainly worth repeating:

Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

This is known as “bad luck.”.



Hello Young People, I’m Hillary Clinton by The Elephant's Child
May 18, 2015, 3:29 pm
Filed under: Campaign 2016, Democrat Corruption, Hillary Clinton | Tags: , ,

JennaMarbles@youtube is very funny.

“You’re an AfricanAmericanMiddleClassHomosexual? I care about you!”

(h/t: American Digest)



Taliban Commanders Headed Back To Afghanistan. Nice Going, Mr. President! by The Elephant's Child
May 13, 2015, 6:57 pm
Filed under: Democrat Corruption, National Security | Tags: , ,

gitmo-detainees-bergdahl-575x261

The five senior Taliban Commanders who were released from Guantanamo in exchange for the return of army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl are set to be freed from their confinement in Qatar effective June 1. The hardened terrorist five were classified as some of the most dangerous Taliban commanders held at GITMO, according to Thomas Joscelyn of  The Long War Journal. Qatar helped to broker the deal. This is what we expected.They are deemed “high risks” by the US and its allies. Two have been wanted by the UN for war crimes. They will soon be back on the battlefield.

The naivety of the Obama administration has long been obvious.  They have sought to coax the Taliban into meaningful peace talks, which have been fruitless. A key goal of talks has been to get the Taliban to renounce al Qaeda, something Mullah Omar’s group has declined to do. All five were closely allied with al Qaeda, and undoubtedly now with ISIS.

Bowe Bergdahl willingly walked away from his post while deployed in Paktika province in eastern Afghanistan. Six months after Bergdahls desertion in November 2009, according to his platoon mates, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, admiral Mike Mullen knew the details of his desertion. As Chairman, Mullen had to report  the details to the Secretary of Defense and to the President. Why the President decided to trade the five high risk prisoners for the return of Bowe Bergdahl remains a shocking affair. Why he expected Qatar to retain the terrorists indefinitely is unknown. Bergdahl has been charged with one count of “desertion with intent to shirk important or hazardous duty” and one count of “misbehavior before the enemy by endangering the safety of a command, unit or place.” Hearings are set for July 8, 2015 at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Huston. The hearing similar to a grand jury hearing in civilian court will determine whether to try him in a court-martial.

If you wonder why Obama acted as he did, Daniel Pipes’ article from the Middle East Forum is the clearest statement I have seen anywhere. Still hard to stomach.



Why Is Freedom of Speech So Hard To Understand? by The Elephant's Child

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and
to petition
the Government for a redress of grievances.

So, naturally, Hillary Clinton, who has desperately wanted to be President ever since she failed to be co-president with Bill (because the people of the United States reminded her that she was not elected) announced as the item of first importance in her quest to be the first woman president 23 years later, that she wants to rewrite the First Amendment to get rid of that annoying bit about “freedom of speech.”

If you need extreme evidence of the failure of our schools to teach the history of our country — there you go. Were you taught why the founders came to believe that the Bill of Rights was an essential part of the Constitution that had, at first, been overlooked?  That’s a dramatic story in itself.

The clear lesson of history is that individual liberty,
the basic underpinning of American society, requires
constant defense against the encroachment of the state.¹

Far too many people simply do not understand what the First Amendment is about. They like the idea of free speech until they find out that it means that people can say unpleasant, offensive or even hateful things, and you can’t get the police or the government to force them to stop. (The faculty will probably help). But “hate speech?” Triggering? Free-Speech Zones? Have American universities become only places of indoctrination rather than citadels of free thought?

The Left today has little use for free speech. After all, they used to be plain “Democrats,” then they became “Liberals,” and when that name fell into disrepute they became “Progressives.” They are deeply concerned with the use of language to sway minds. That’s why they are so careful about “talking points.” They don’t want anyone to foul up the conversation by not using the approved words. They get very annoyed when conservatives respond with pure logic, or even facts.

You have probably noticed that Leftists don’t like to be disagreed with. It depends on the particular subject, but in general, the Left approaches problems emotionally. They are deeply troubled by inequality, overflowing with empathy, and want to take all the extra money the rich have tucked away and give it to the unfortunate.

Free speech is under threat today as never before, especially on our college campuses, where students are often too fragile to hear a speaker who might deliver words uncomfortable to tender ears. Banned speakers have been George Will, Condoleeza Rice, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali — brilliant people who have important things to say.

Pamela Geller is a courageous woman who is trying to expose the reality of radical Islam. She helped to plan a Prophet Muhammad cartoon contest that was attacked by two gunmen in Garland, Texas over the weekend. Organizers knew they’d be targeted, but refused to back down.The contest was designed to show the importance of freedom of speech and the savagery of the Islamic State. A policeman was shot, and the two shooters were killed by the police.

Pamela Geller has been threatened with an anonymous message boasting of “71 trained soldiers in 15 different states, ready at our word to attack.”  That’s serious. Judicial Watch has identified an ISIS training camp just 8 miles south of the border in Mexico. Homeland Security denied any such camp, though Mexican authorities authenticated it to Judicial Watch.

What is particularly disgusting is the American media, who attacked Pamela Geller for staging a contest that would offend Muslims, rather than attacking the shooters who claimed to represent ISIS.

That the American media should be so lacking in understanding of the importance of free speech is astonishing, for they are extremely conscious of the freedom of the press, another part of the First Amendment, and depend on it for their livelihoods. But conformity with Leftist talking points trumps liberty every time.

And certainly they are aware of the Charlie Hebdo murders, and the beginning of the cartoon controversy in 2005 as the Danish newspaper published a series of cartoons on September 30, some depicting the Prophet Mohammad as a terrorist with a bomb. If you missed that whole thing, or didn’t understand what the fuss was all about, The Telegraph has published a complete timeline from the beginning at Jyllands-Posten down to today and the shooting at Garland, Texas.

Here’s where it gets really interesting. “The belief that Islam prohibits drawing Prophet Mohammed pervades public debate over what causes “cartoon” violence.

At the root of Muslim protestations is the false belief that Islam prohibits the depiction of Prophet Mohammed. There is no prohibition on creating images of Prophet Mohammed in the Qur’an. Up until the 14th century; such depictions were common in the non-Arab Muslim world. On my website, www.tarekfatah.com, I have posted many depictions of Prophet Mohammed, drawn mostly by Muslim artists. Even if it were true that such depictions were prohibited, the prohibition would not be applicable to non-Muslims.

That article was published in The Toronto Sun, not in the “mainstream” American press. Do read the whole piece from the Middle East Forum. The key sentence: “On the contrary, many Muslims rejected Geller’s right to freedom of expression, admitting that even as Americans they believe there should be limits to free speech enshrined in the U.S. Constitution.”

“Here is the hard truth; that the world contains many cultures inured to tyranny from time out of mind. There are peoples who may long for freedom, but have no practical idea how it can be got and maintained; or if they know, no energy for the task.” ²

¹ Walter Wriston: Risk and Other Four Letter Words
² David Warren
three-man-imprisoned-nearly-40-years-thanks-teenagers-lie


Obama Has Made a Dreadful Mess of Our Immigration System Through Executive Orders by The Elephant's Child
May 1, 2015, 8:58 pm
Filed under: Democrat Corruption, Politics | Tags: ,

Crowds of iImmigrants protest in favor of comprehensive immigration reform on West side of Capitol Hill in Washington

Some of us are bewildered when illegal aliens demonstrate, demanding citizenship now! They claim “No human is illegal” — good slogan, utterly false. Here’s Merriam Webster:

illegal, il•le•gal, adjective: not allowed by law.
……………………………..not according to or authorized by law.

alien, noun:  a person who was born in a different country and is not
………………     a citizen of the county in which he now lives. A
………………… foreign born resident who has not been naturalized
………………….and is still a subject or citizen of a foreign country.

From William Voegeli’s The Pity Party:

A survey taken by the Mexican Migration Project of 1,353 Mexicans living in their native country found that 52 percent believe “Mexicans have a right to be in the U.S.” and 66 percent agreed that the “U.S . government has no right to limit immigration” Only 9 percent of those surveyed said they intended to migrate to the United States illegally (In that nation of 116 million, 9 percent represents more than 10 million people.) Not surprisingly, 82 percent of the people within that subset thought Mexicans have a right to be in the United States and 86 percent thought the United States has no right to keep them out.

Many Mexicans…see themselves as sojourners who will return home once they have made some money. The typical Mexican male earns about half what a non-Latino white earns so if he compares himself to other Americans he is likely to feel like a failure. But if he compares himself to the Mexicans with whom he grew up, he is likely to feel quite successful. So he clings to his Mexican identity, sends money back to his parents, goes home for holidays with gifts that his relatives could not afford, tries to buy property in Mexico for his retirement, and retains his Mexican citizenship.

We currently have 4.4 million foreigners who are trying to come to the United States, legally, according to the rules — over 100,085 more than last year. Waiting lists are needed because of annual limits on the number of immigrants that can be admitted in certain family and employment categories, and because of caps on the number who can come from each country.

Applications for H-1B visas, which allow U.S. businesses to hire foreign workers in science, engineering and computer programing, reached a record of 233,000 for fiscal year 2016, according to new government figures. Under limits set by Congress, only 85,000 of the work visas, including 20,000 for holders of master’s degrees, are available yearly. Companies are frustrated with the cap and have been aggressively lobbying to raise it.

America has no shortage of engineers. Companies aren’t bringing in Third World engineers on H-1B visas because of a shortage, but because they want to fire their American workers and replace them with cheaper foreigners. American IT workers are forced to train their H-1B replacements before being fired.

At a time when the labor force participation rate has fallen to 62 percent and the employment growth for the last 15 years has gone to immigrants, opposing the Super-Amnesty of 12 million illegal aliens is still considered an extreme position… in the Republican Party. Scott Walker suggested that Congress should make immigration decisions based on “protecting American workers and American wages” he was excoriated by the American media. A poll has shown that 13% of the world’s adults or 150 million people would move to the United states if they were allowed to do so.

Jeb Bush argues that immigration reform could bring about an influx of new talent that would keep the U.S. in position to compete with foreign nations that have made gains in technology and other sectors.

Well-heeled foreign students come to America to study in American colleges and universities. Once they graduate, they can again become “students” presumably to attend graduate school, but then become eligible to work. So foreign students who study in American universities are more desirable than American students studying in American universities?

Here’s the New York Times rhapsodizing about the wonderful effect of immigration on the economy:

Immigrants lift the economy as new workers and consumers, and they do not strain the welfare safety net. There is not a fixed number of jobs over which immigrants and the native-born grapple. The economy is far more dynamic than that, and a lot of its dynamism comes from immigration.

So only 62% of our working age people who want jobs are working, and a good percentage of those are underemployed. President Obama has essentially opened the borders encouraging wide open immigration, and is sending those illegal immigrants to every state in the union to get them registered to vote. States have been forbidden to ask if those seeking to register to vote are citizens.

Clearly none of this makes sense. Amnesty encourages more illegal immigration. A country has a right to decide how many immigrants they will welcome, and under what rules.

Our economy has been essentially stalled in the first quarter of the year. No growth at all. Inflation-adjusted median household income has dropped — during an “economic recovery.” The president who harps on inequality as a “defining issue of our time” has clearly demonstrated that progressive ideas don’t help the economy, or the middle class. We are desperately in need of fewer slogans and more careful thought.

From the Center for Immigration Studies:

The president has now set into motion his sweeping executive amnesties. He has done so through a series of memoranda issued by the Department of Homeland Security that will provide legalization and working papers for as many as five million illegal migrants. That action and number is without precedent in American history.

No sacrifice or penalty will be asked for in return as a condition of legalization. Indeed, with working papers and Social Security numbers, these newly legalized aliens will be eligible for certain federal welfare benefits.

This is not something that has been done to benefit the United States of America.



The Immigration Problem Is Far Bigger Than You Ever Imagined. by The Elephant's Child

video-shows-women-climbing-u-s-mexico-border-fence-in-less-than-18-seconds

Immigration is a touchy subject — minefields in every direction. We are a nation with borders and immigration laws, or at least we used to be. The president of the United States believes that American Immigration policies are not determined by the Constitution, nor by the laws of our country, but by his personal preferences. He apparently hopes to admit enough poor, non-English speaking illegal aliens from Central America and give them driver’s licenses, and thus the right to vote—to guarantee the next election, and future elections.

“Progressive,” “socialist,” and “liberal” are today interchangeable terms that describe participants in a moral crusade with a political agenda, usually referred to as “social justice.” It can be summed up as equality imposed by the state.The quest for a utopia of equals forges progressive alliances, defines their allegiances, and justifies the means they are willing to use to get there.They may differ on policies and tactics to advance the cause. But they are ever ready to subordinate their differences to achieve the common goal. Since the Democratic Party has become a party of the Left, progressive missionaries view it as the practical vehicle for making their idea a reality. They are willing to follow its marching orders because a political party that controls the state is the only way to achieve the goal. (David Horowitz: Take No Prisoners)

“Social Justice,” defined by the left as equality imposed by the state, is equality of the ordinary people out there, but the “progressives” proposing it view themselves as the state, those who impose equality, not those who actually participate in it. See the case of Hillary, who charges $300,000 for a half-hour speech (Bill gets $500,000) is clearly a paid-up member if the 1%, and excoriates corporate CEOs for making too much money, Which is not just silly, but major hypocrisy.

If we are going to have immigration laws, who should we let in? Everybody that wants to come? People who bring desirable skills? Refugees from the hell-holes of the world? The president can’t even get around to admitting the translators who worked with the U.S,Army in Iraq — whose lives are in danger from ISIS. That’s a disgrace. How many of the relatives of a new citizen should be admitted? People with significant assets? Degrees? Business owners? English speakers? People with no assets who will require welfare, food stamps, housing? Diversity? Ethnic origin? A large portion of the countries in the world are hell-holes.

A large percentage of the people of the world would like to come to America. If no immigration curbs are enacted, another 14 million immigrants will come to the U.S between now and 2025. That means adding a new population almost four times larger than that of Los Angeles in just 10 years time. But empathy, compassion, caring?

Businesses claim to need new immigrants, claim that immigrants have added much to American society, but when examined more closely, high-tech workers are being forced to train their replacements who will work for less money. One Silicon Valley company was paying legal Indian immigrants $1.24 an hour to work 100 hour weeks. There is currently a program that converts foreign college graduates back into foreign students so they can stay and work legally. That number soared to nearly 100,000 in 2013. Since they are defined by ICE as “students” neither the employer or the alien has to pay payroll taxes —so the United States pays a bonus of as much as $11,600 to an employer when they hire an alien graduate rather than a U.S.graduate with the same qualifications and the same salary.

Conservatives usually say they want the border controlled before we reform immigration laws and set quotas. They want the border fence completed. Scroll through this Google Images portrayal of the “Border fence With Mexico.” Mexico, by the way, is extremely offended by any border fence of ours, but anyone crossing into Mexico without permission may spend months in jail. They depend on remittances from illegals who have crossed into the U.S. to work  to support their economy.

I welcome legal immigrants with open arms. Immigration is not a suicide pact. We have a right to determine who and how many and when we will admit immigrants. But deciding who and how many and under what circumstances needs to be decided on the merits — not by ;politicians who are trying to appeal to particular voting groups. And Legal immigrants must assimilate, renounce their former country and become Americans. Barack Obama is doing wrong, and doing great damage to the country. He needs to be stopped.




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