American Elephants


We Need to Take the Idea of “Control” A Lot More Seriously by The Elephant's Child

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The news is, at best, as disturbing as could be imagined, but it takes a lot of reading to understand the developments. Let’s start with China. President Xi Jinping is not merely an authoritarian leader. He evidently believes that the Party must have absolute and complete control over society, and he must have absolute and complete control over the Party. China returns once more to totalitarianism.

“By 2020, Chinese officials plan to have about 626 million surveillance cameras  operating throughout the country. The cameras will, among other things, feed information into a national “social credit system.

That system, when it is in place in perhaps two years, will assign to every person in China a constantly updated score based on observed behaviors. For example, an instance of jaywalking, caught by one of those cameras, will result in a reduction in score.

Although officials might hope to reduce jaywalking, they seem to have far more sinister ambitions, such as ensuring conformity to Communist Party political demands. In short, the government looks as if it is determined to create what the Economist called “the world’s first digital totalitarian state.”

That social credit system, once perfected, will surely be extended to foreign companies and individuals.

A journalist named Liu Hu was prevented from taking a flight because he had a low score. According to the Global Times (a communist controlled paper) by the end of April 2018, authorities had blocked individuals from taking 1.4 million flights and 4,25 million high-speed train trips. Liu said “I can’t buy property. My child can’t go to a private school” You are being controlled by the list all the time.

Chinese leaders have long been interested in making defiance virtually impossible. With the the capabilities they are developing it would seem that absolute control is in the works.

Americans who have studied up on Communism as practiced in Russia, the eastern European nations, and Castro’s Cuba, and now Venezuela, find our own Democrat party’s fight to be in control of our country and our Politics off-putting. But this kind of control is far beyond anything that we even could imagine. Do Read the Whole Thing. It’s not that long.

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Heather MacDonald Takes on Academe and UCLA by The Elephant's Child

How unbelievably stupid! A major designed to make its participants less knowledgeable, less able to find work, less able to cope with the world, and less useful as a member of the population. I was an English major at a very good small college, with excellent professors who were in love with literature and wanted to pass that on to their students. The professor who taught Shakespeare was a noted Shakespearean scholar.

No wonder college students seem to believe that socialism is a better alternative to freedom. If you have a student headed to UCLA, you had better rethink that. You are wasting their time and your money.Send them to vocational school instead—there they’ll at least learn something.



The Once Prosperous State of Venezuela. by The Elephant's Child

I didn’t see who came up with this, but it is all too painfully correct. Venezuela was once the richest state in South America, and then Cuba offered to help them out.



Why Are Liberals So Angry? by The Elephant's Child

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Here is a post from just 8 years ago, under the same title, posted on August 8, 2010.  Obama was in  the second year of his presidency. Apparently nothing has changed. They’re progressives now, but they’re still angry.

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Liberals control the White House, the Senate and the House of Representatives.  Their efforts are extolled and celebrated by the national media.  Hollywood churns out movies and TV shows that portray the liberal view of the world.  Congress can pass whatever bills they want, confident that the president will sign them.  They have the power to do whatever they want, and since they are there —our elected representatives — one can assume that they have the approval and good wishes of the people of the United States.

So why are Liberals so angry?  If the recent revelations from JournoList, the e-mail list of about 100 liberal/left journalists mean anything, the most notable fact is the depth of their hatred for conservatives.  And not just conservatives in general, they hate conservative individuals.

There is plenty of evidence of this.  Those of us on the right have seen it — frothing at the mouth, red-in-the-face, not just disagreement, but hatred.  Back in the 1980s when Ronald Reagan called the Soviet Union “an evil empire,” liberals were enraged.

A  JournoList participant, a public-radio reporter, expressed her personal wish to see Rush Limbaugh die a slow painful death — and nobody objected.  A Daily Kos editor dreams of liquidating opponents like “Steven Milloy and his buddies” with a Soylent Green assisted suicide, because they commit the crime of opposing global warming alarmism.  Howard Dean, never shy about expressing his hatred for Republicans, said “In contradistinction to the Republicans, Democrats don’t believe kids ought to go to bed hungry at night.”  Representative Alan Grayson (D-FL) said “I want to say a few words about what it means to be a Democrat.  It’s very simple: We have a conscience.” Oh please!

When you comb through the evidence, it becomes apparent that Conservatives are hated specifically because — they disagree. Liberals life-long dream of government controlled health care has been realized.  And the Republicans had the colossal nerve to oppose it.  It was, liberals are sure, the right thing to do, to make health care more affordable and everybody healthier, and the Republicans started in with their studies and evidence and history and convinced the poor ordinary folk out there to oppose it too.

Progressivism is a bit of a religious experience — everything is politics and politics is everything.  And when they got to be in charge, to control the levers and the power of government, liberals would show everyone just what “hope and change”really meant. Equality, social justice.  Things would be fixed.  The rich would be brought down, business would be forced to stop preying on poor people just to make a profit.  Profit would no longer be allowed. Life would be fair.

Of course they have tripled the deficit that Obama claims daily was left to him by George W. Bush.  They have really, really tried to fix the economy. They have paid people to buy cars, purchase homes, pay off their mortgages, weatherize their homes and put solar panels on their roofs. And it didn’t work. And the liberals are furious because the conservatives — disagreed.

Life is not fair. It just isn’t.  And you cannot make it fair.  Bad things happen to good people, and good things happen to bad people. Human nature is imperfect, unchangeable, and unfixable.  We make mistakes, and that is how we learn.  Sometimes we make horrible mistakes, and we try to fix them.  But if we do not learn from our mistakes, then we cannot grow. The greatest impetus for growth has always been liberty. Milton Friedman once put it rather well:

A society that puts equality— in the sense of equality of outcome — ahead of freedom will end up with neither equality nor freedom.  The use of force to achieve equality will destroy freedom, and the force, introduced for good purposes, will end up in the hands of people who use it to promote their own interests.



The Evil Donald Trump Is Yanking Innocent Children from the Arms of Their Parents, and other Fables from the Left. by The Elephant's Child

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A leading Democrat spoke out this week to say that they needed Obama because they didn’t have anyone else — I assume meaning anyone else who was so popular, or perhaps anyone who could defeat Trump—I have no idea. The Obama administration is not coming off too well in the wake of the FBI and the Inspector General’s report.

But clearly, the Trump administration is in deep trouble. They are yanking innocent little children from the arms of their parents at the border, depriving them of their parents and putting them in detention for no reason except that Trump is Hitler reincarnated. Or at least that is what most Leftist websites are shrieking. Forgive me, but we’ve heard this “innocent little children” vocabulary before, applied to the DACA children who were brought here “through no fault of their own,” “against their will,” eager for “a chance at college.” Pure propaganda to arouse emotions.

The requirements were only that they came to the U.S. before their 16th birthday, be under 31 by June 15, 2012, enroll in school or get an honorable discharge from the military. The fraud rate for these simple requirements is estimated to be 40 to 50%. Only 49% have a high school education, 24% are functionally illiterate, another 46% have only “basic” English ability, and the rest are school dropouts. For every DACA recipient who joined the military (about 1 in 1,000), 2 have committed serious crimes. At least 1,500 are gang members (as of Feb. 2017, but by August 2017 the number had increased to 2,139. American taxpayers have already funded “resettlement” of 13,000 unaccompanied minors who managed to enter the United States. Those who claim to be age 17 and under must be accommodated in staying here while their cases wind their way through a years-long process of evaluation.

But Democrats are told to be up in arms about Trump taking innocent little children away from their loving parents and putting them in prison. Fact: Illegal immigrants are criminals, breaking immigration laws by entering the country illegally. There is a legal way to become a citizen. Criminal illegal immigrants are detained. It is not acceptable to imprison their children as well.

HHS took news media on a tour of a facility in El Cajon, California where migrant children are being sheltered while separated from their parents. (follow the link for pictures) The facilities are comfortable, providing lodging, meals, clothing, medical care, They get English lessons, trips to the zoo, museums, parks. No, they are not being put in “cages,” that was the Democrat charge last week, when they rounded up pictures of children in cages. Turned out the pictures were from the Obama administration, which actually did put kids in cages, and New York magazine also reports the Obama Administration handed child migrants over into the custody of human traffickers after neglecting the most basic checks on these “caregivers,” failing to discover if they were relatives or sex traffickers.

Democrats count heavily on the “talking points” they are given, which are meant to rouse up emotions, but to provide just barely enough information to allow them to know anything real about the situation. This is the source of much of the “fake news” which is unfortunately all too pervasive. Nancy Pelosi cleared it all up with her statement to CNS News. (short video here) Which is an unintended gift to the GOP. “She informed the world.” to quote Tom Lifson “that she doesn’t care about Americans. “That is not the point. ” The point is the hurt feelings of illegals when they are called “Illegal.” You have seen the signs in the pictures of protests “No Human Being is Illegal.”

It really simplifies the world when you can just rely on the talking points that you are given by your betters, and don’t have to do a lot of tiresome reading or thinking. Keeps life delightfully simple, and when the talking points really arouse you to action, you can go to a protest with your friends and shout and feel important.

 



Looks Like There Really Is a Swamp Down Here by The Elephant's Child

The breathlessly awaited Inspector General’s report has been released, and Singapore has vanished from the news. The report is some 600 pages long, so everybody is frantically trying to read it all very quickly, and only dribs and drabs are getting out. Those who hoped to see James Comey off to jail promptly will be disappointed. It is quite clear that there has been some improper behavior, but how much and who and whether it amounts to anything significant remains to be seen. Be patient.

What is clear is that there is indeed a swamp. Too many people who have been around too long, feel entitled, and have lost their sense of being servants of the people of the United States working to make the country better have got it all backwards. They believe they are in charge, and entitled to run the show. Throw in a goodly mixture of hard left bias learned from the faculties of the nation’s colleges and universities, and you have a glimpse of the problems. The media suffer from the same delusions. It ‘s going to take some real work to put it all back together.

 



Here’s What Obama Had to Say About The Iran Deal Back Then by The Elephant's Child

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I was looking in an old notebook, and ran across a couple of quotes I had jotted down from President Obama about the Iran Deal: I won’t testify as to their accuracy, as it’s clear I was scribbling fast. I can hardly read my writing.

“It shows what we can accomplish when we lead from a position of strength, and a position of principle. When we unite the international community around a shared vision, and we resolve to solve problems peacefully.”

Well, that sounds like Obama, doesn’t it? I can’t remember who it was who described him as “a real good talker.”

“With this deal, we cut off every single one of Iran’s pathways to a nuclear weapons program, and Iran’s nuclear program will be under severe limits for many years.  Without a deal these pathways remain open, there would be no limits on Iran’s nuclear program, and Iran could move closer to a nuclear bomb.”

Sounds like Obama alright. That worked out well.




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