American Elephants


Just Another Normal Day in Seattle by The Elephant's Child

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I think I read that they changed the name of the Seattle Autonomous six blocks from CHAZ to CHOP, but I’m not sure of that one. It continues being autonomous. On Flag Day, yesterday, some stalwart individuals tried to march through with American Flags, perhaps reminding them just what country this is, but they took the flags away (violently).

This part of the country has a fairly long history of being a bit weird.  Postmaster General James A. Farley had a famous toast “to the forty-seven states and the soviet of Washington”. Seattle has a long reputation for radicalism. Recommended reading: Utopias on Puget Sound, 1885-1915. There was a smattering of that again in the sixties, I believe. Perhaps it’s something in the water. Breaks out now and then.

There was a Seattle General Strike in February 1919, and 350,000 shipyard workers in the Seattle shipyard stopped work after not getting their post WW1 pay increase. A big Wobblies Protest (Workers of the World Union) also known as the Everett Massacre (2 men were killed and 16-20 wounded). The Kent State Shootings in May of 1970, The WTO Protests in 1999 40,000 demonstrated in the city, much vandalism, Occupy Seattle: September/October 2011, a reform aimed at big banks, and questions about the legality of protesters sleeping in public spaces. So perhaps it really is something in the water.

Paul Joseph Watson did a most enjoyable video on “Cultural Revolution“, and the Autonomous Zone currently on Capitol Hill. For those unfamiliar with the Seattle area, it is a city famously built on seven hills, and they plowed some of them down to create space for a city. Do watch the video if you have some fascination with strange societal outbreaks. It might be helpful when one breaks out in your peaceful town.

We’re getting a lot of national attention as this is assumed to be just an extension of Black Lives Matter, but apparently it is just normal life here in the Northwest.  I grew up in the mountains of Idaho and find this strange and fascinating.

In Scotland, BLM protesters defaced the statue of Robert the Bruce at Bannockburn, Scotland’s legendary King. In Britain, as many statues were torn down or defaced, the Statue of Winston Churchill was put in a tall box to protect it.

The proper adjective to describe Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkin and Governor Jay Inslee, I decided, is feckless.



Going Just a Little Too Far! by The Elephant's Child

The Democrats in the House of Representatives of the United States of America, confronted with “Black Lives Matter” mobs on television, promptly took what action seemed most appropriate to them to retain black voters for the upcoming election. They donned Kente Cloth scarves, especially purchased for the demonstration, and knelt in humble supplication before the mobs they saw on television, and expressed their best intentions. Nancy Pelosi, who has passed her 80th birthday, needed help to get back up, but she was truly sincere in not wanting to lose any black votes.

I had a sort of old idea stuck in my head that one of the reasons we fought a Revolutionary War, was that we were not going to kneel before tyrants like Britain’s King George the Third any more. We were free people and knelt only before our God.

Employees at a number of major corporations have demanded proper obeisance before the Black Lives Matter protests, and even  Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos scolded a customer who suggested that “All Lives Mattered.” HBO has blacklisted “Gone With the Wind”, so if you want to see that old film, you’d better buy a copy. Hattie McDaniels was the first black person to win an Oscar, for that film, and the first racial minority to be nominated.

Oddly enough, riots have broken out in Britain and in Europe as well. Britain, of course, has the whole British Empire to answer for, but some other countries joined in too. I guess the influx of migrants from Africa? Not sure. Maybe rioting just looked like fun and everybody decided to jump in. The British nave been tearing down statues like crazy, particularly of anyone who ever might have been connected with slavery like their South African colony. Tearing down a statue does not change history, just deprives today;s people of an historical representation. Doesn’t really accomplish anything at all.

Human nature is just not all peaches and cream and sunshine. We’re a quarrelsome lot, and we have trouble getting along with our own families, let alone all those other unrelated people. That’s why we learn manners, and think education is useful, and learning history is especially needed. Yes, the Confederate flag should not be flown over statehouses, but the Civil War is long over. The South lost.  I lost two great uncles on each side of the war which meant that I have a lot fewer cousins than I might have had, but I might not have liked them anyway.

There is no magic wand that will make everybody agreeable and kind and helpful. Disbanding the police is perhaps the dumbest idea that anyone has come up with. Chicago just had 18 murders in 24 hours in the most violent day in 60 years. And disbanding the police seems like a good idea?



If Your Basic Assumption is Wrong, Your “Solution” Won’t Work by The Elephant's Child

Former President Barack Obama was known for adding civil rights issues to many of his policies, including those involving sexual assault procedures on campuses, public school bathrooms and locker room, and how public schools deal with disciplinary problems.

Social-Justice advocates assumed that racial disparities in the criminal justice system were evidence that police were, at least implicitly, racist. So too the disparities in school suspensions must be evidence that teachers were, at the very least implicitly, racist. Statistics were clear. A greater proportion of minority students were disciplined or suspended than white students. So all was blamed on an incorrect assumption.

This Obama era school discipline policy extended the Black Lives Matter ideology directly into America’s classrooms. The Obama administration’s 2014 “Dear Colleague” guidance said that any school district whose disciplinary measures impacted a disproportionately greater number of minority students being disciplined would soon receive a visit from the Department of Justice and the Department of Education. The Federal Government was concerned with the “school to prison pipeline.”

However, critics of the Obama policy say it essentially placed “racial quotas” on school discipline and is teaching minority students they can avoid consequences for disruptive and violent behavior simply because of their race or ethnic background.

After much speculation about whether education secretary Betsy DeVos would actually take on the Obama-era school discipline policy, she hired former senior attorney for the Competitive Enterprise Institute Hans Bader – a noted critic of the use of “disparate impact” statistics to muscle school districts.

So instead of suspending an out-of-control kid who is threatening the teacher, the Obama administration recommended techniques such as “conflict resolution, restorative practices, counseling, and structured systems of positive intervention.”

Statistics are clear that there are large numbers of single parent moms in inner city communities. Even Obama has blamed a lot of dysfunction on the absence of fathers in the home. Add gangs and drugs. Ben Carson has said the streets where he grew up were getting young men killed and that it was a library card that saved him. He grew up to become a world-renowned surgeon and now the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, trying to do something about the bad streets.

Critics said the Obama policy placed “racial quotas” on school discipline and teaches minority students that they can avoid consequences for bad behavior because of their race or ethnic background. Some news reports would seem to confirm this with more frequent stories of attacks on teachers and injuries. Such reports seldom make the front page or even the mainstream news, but in odd corners of conversations about education it appears that schools are becoming dangerous places for teachers. No school district wants to admit that their schools are not safe places for the teachers—but there seems to be a lot of it under the radar. But that too is an assumption.

Here are some interesting posts at Pinterest, which seem to be by teachers trying to figure things out. On the other hand, it seems like there is not a week when there isn’t a post at Instapundit about some teacher (female) being arrested for having sex with a student.



#Black Lives Matter Seems to Be Remarkably Uninterested in The Lives of Poor Black Kids by The Elephant's Child

Oooops! Black Lives Matter just exposed their organization as entirely political, and not much interested in the lives of black children. Betsy DeVos, newly confirmed Secretary of Education, was blocked from attempting to enter the Jefferson Academy middle school in Washington DC by Black Lives Matter protesters blocking he way and heckling, reportedly organized by the Washington Teacher’s Union.

The Alliance For Educational Justice claimed,  “Today, families, residents and community leaders joined to block U.S. Department of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos from disrupting learning at Jefferson Academy.”

“Betsy DeVos has a track record of privatizing and undermining public schools that serve Black students for financial gain,” said Makia Green, an organizer with the Washington, DC chapter of Black Youth Project 100. “Today’s action made it clear: our community will do everything in our power to resist DeVos‘ destructive policies and her attacks on an entire generation of Black students.”

DeVos responded in a statement following the incident saying, ” I respect peaceful protest, and I will not be deterred in executing the vital mission of the Department of Education. No school door in America will be blocked from those seeking to help our nation’s school children.”

The reason that Betsy DeVos was nominated to be Secretary of Education is that she has been a long time advocate for poor black children trapped in poor schools, and pushes for charter schools as the best answer to the need for parents to have a voice in their children’s education.

There is a lot of misunderstanding about “charter schools.” Charter schools are public schools. Some presume that because of the word “charter” that they are somehow private schools. Not so. Those who wish to start a charter  must develop an educational plan to submit to the state, and when their plan is made public—gather enough interest to make a separate school viable. They may have more freedom from federal and state regulation than regular public schools.

A study reported in Forbes in 2014 showed evidence that charter high schools had 7-11%  higher graduation rates than their public school peers, boosted college enrollment rates by 10-11 percent, were more apt to complete at least 3 years of post-secondary education, and charter school attendance was associated with an increase in maximum annual earnings between ages 23 and 35 years of age, about 12.7% higher than those who attended a traditional high school.

Different states have different rules. Charter schools usually operate on a smaller budget—but better ideas, teachers are often paid less (because they get to really teach—some teachers go for it) (a big part of the reason that teacher’s unions oppose charter schools and charter teachers are not necessarily members of the unions). Like much in American life, schools operate under far more rules than they used to. I’m not sure if all states even have charter schools. New Orleans has the highest percentage of students in charter schools, over 90%. Here are five facts about charters from the Reason Foundation, in simple graph form.

Here in Washington State, the state teacher’s union lobby has fought endlessly to ensure that all public funds are given only to traditional public schools. As the populous Seattle area is reliably Lefty, the Supreme Court broke with the precedent set by six other states that faced similar battles, ignored the vast amount of evidence that charter schools improve academic outcomes for students, ignored the over one million students currently on wait lists for admission to charter schools, and their parents who favor charters, and ruled that public funding of charter schools was unconstitutional. The legislature has found funding from Lottery revenue for charters, but the state should work to ensure that funding follows the children, not the teacher’s unions. A better education means so much to minority children trapped in failing schools that it is particularly interesting to see Black Lives Matter opposing charter schools and Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos.

You have perhaps noticed that leftists seem to always appear in organized groups — Occupy Wall Street, Black Lives Matter, the list goes on and on, but when you get down to what they actually advocate, it’s often just hard-left politics, not black lives, nor $15 an hour, nor economic equality.

A group of 160 black education leaders are fighting against the NAACP’s proposed stance against charter schools, which shows the diversity of views of charters.

An article from AEI last August tries to offer some clarity on the battles, showing that advocates of different positions are relying on different evidence, and doesn’t clarify anything at all.

More troubling is a report from the Minneapolis/St Paul Star Tribune on the trend for violence in the public schools, and the dangers that teachers face. School disciplinary policies have removed many consequences for bad behavior in response to liberal demands for an ideology of “equity.” In St. Paul schools in 2010-11, “15 percent of the district’s black students were suspended at least once — five times more than white students. This racial differential mirrors those in schools across the Twin Cities and throughout the nation…. St. Paul school leaders have assumed that differences in discipline rates are the result, not of higher rates of misconduct by black students, but of the racism of teachers and administrators, who are believed to unfairly target black students.” To eliminate statistical disparities, they abandoned meaningful penalties. I read a lot, but I haven’t seen much reporting on violence in schools—just enough to suggest that it is perhaps far more prevalent than is realized. Do read this whole article if you care about kids and education.

Betsy DeVos has long been a passionate advocate for poor black children facing failing schools, and suggests that more charters will help. It’s a big job and I certainly wish her well. Progressives believe that all things are better done  by the federal government, with themselves in control of the government.  Conservatives believe that there are few things that the federal government can do satisfactorily, and that most tasks should be devolved to the states, or to the closest government to the people who are affected by the tasks. That old “We the People” thing.



Black Lives Matter: A Hashtag Of Lies by The Elephant's Child

Bill Whittle demolishes the campaign of #Black Lives Matter in just under 7 minutes. Mr. Whittle is excellent at providing the facts, backing them up and summarizing a disgraceful attempt to get Black voters to the polls to support the Democrats.

Most Black Americans do not live in the inner city, are not on welfare but successful members of the middle class and the filthy rich. When it is election time, however, residents of the black inner city’s problems suddenly become entirely caused by white Republicans. The facts indicate something else, but propaganda often works better.

Heather MacDonald took on the subject In the Wall Street Journal on Monday. She wrote:

Speaking in West Bend, Wis., on Aug. 16, only days after the recent riots in Milwaukee, Mr. Trump observed that during “the last 72 hours . . . another nine were killed in Chicago and another 46 were wounded.” The victims, as in other cities with rising crime, were overwhelmingly black.

Bringing safety to inner-city residents should be a top presidential priority, Mr. Trump said: “Our job is to make life more comfortable for the African-American parent who wants their kids to be able to safely walk the streets and walk to school. Or the senior citizen waiting for a bus. Or the young child walking home from school.” Mr. Trump promised to restore law and order “for the sake of all, but most especially for the sake of those living in the affected communities.”

The reaction was swift. The progressive website Crooks and Liars deemed Mr. Trump’s speech a “mashup of Hitler and George Wallace.” On CNN the activist and former Obama adviser Van Jones called it “despicable” and “shocking in its divisiveness.” Historian Josh Zeitz told USA Today that “the term law and order in modern American politics is, ipso facto, a racially tinged term.”

Do read the whole article (subscription barrier), it provides the supporting facts and the  bias lurking behind the response.

 



It’s Not Funny! Just the Way Things Are. by The Elephant's Child

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Why Wait for the Facts to Be Revealed? It’s More Fun to Riot and Loot. by The Elephant's Child

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Milwaukee has been quiet again after a curfew on teenagers, and after Governor Scott Walker alerted the National Guard. The real rioting broke out on Saturday night in Sherman Park after the fatal shooting of a young black man  by a black policeman. The body cam showed that the young man had a gun, and he had an extensive record of investigations, but only one serious arrest. It is a textbook example of racial agitation. In an article at City Journal, Heather MacDonald reported on the “black social breakdown and anti-cop ideology that has put another American city to the torch.” MacDonald wrote:

The Black Lives Matter-inspired assassin who murdered five police officers in Dallas in July 2016 said that he wanted to kill white people, as well as white cops. The vitriol that officers working in urban areas now encounter on a daily basis is inflected with racism.

And if the war on cops escalates into more frequent attacks on whites and their perceived interests, the elite establishment will bear much of the blame. For the last two years, President Barack Obama has seized every opportunity to advise blacks that they are the victims of a racist criminal justice system. We should not be surprised when that belief, so constantly inflamed, erupts into violence.  Even in his remarks at the memorial service for the five murdered Dallas cops, Obama had the gall to trot out his usual racial vendetta against the police, even though he was fully on notice that cops were being killed because of it:

At the service, ignoring the astronomically higher rates of black crime that fully explain racial disparities in the criminal justice system, Obama said:

When African-Americans from all walks of life, from different communities across the country, voice a growing despair over what they perceive to be unequal treatment; when study after study shows that whites and people of color experience the criminal justice system differently, so that if you’re black, you’re more likely to be pulled over or searched or arrested, more likely to get longer sentences, more likely to get the death penalty for the same crime; when mothers and fathers raise their kids right and have “the talk” about how to respond if stopped by a police officer—“yes, sir,” “no, sir”—but still fear that something terrible may happen when their child walks out the door, still fear that kids being stupid and not quite doing things right might end in tragedy—when all this takes place more than 50 years after the passage of the Civil Rights Act, we cannot simply turn away and dismiss those in peaceful protest as troublemakers or paranoid.

Hillary has been just as ready to blame the police and by extension, “white” society because it as ‘reality” that police officers see black lives  as “cheap.” That was in a January 2016 debate. That’s how you attempt to get blacks to the polls to vote.

Clinton said that “we cannot rest until we root out implicit bias and stop the killings of African-Americans.” Showing herself to be as statistically challenged as Obama, she continued: “Let’s admit it, there is clear evidence that African-Americans are disproportionately killed in police incidents compared to any other group.” (Blacks are actually killed at a lower rate than their crime rates would predict. And at least four studies this year have shown that police officers are less likely to shoot blacks than whites, whether armed or unarmed.)

The hacking of George Soros Memos reveals that Soros’ Open Society approved $650,000 to “invest in technical assistance and support for the groups at the core of the burgeoning #BlackLivesMatter movement.” Breitbart says:

George Soros’ Open Society Institute viewed the 2015 Baltimore unrest following the death of Freddie Gray as opening a “unique opportunity” to create “accountability” for the Baltimore police while aiding activists in reforming the city, according to hacked documents reviewed by Breitbart Jerusalem.

The hacked document states:

Leaders of #BlackLivesMatter and The Movement for Black Lives worked to influence candidate platforms during the 2016 primary season. This came alongside the recent acknowledgement by political strategists that African-American voters may be much more pivotal to the 2016 general election than previously forecasted.

 



The Danger of the “Black Lives Matter” Movement. by The Elephant's Child

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From City Journal “No Equivalence” by Bob McManus, July 8 2016.

Much remains to be learned about the why and the how of Thursday night’s massacre in Dallas, but there is scant mystery about the what: at least 11 police officers were calmly marked for execution for no other reason than that they were cops. When the firing was over, five lay dead and the remainder wounded—some gravely.

To the untrained eye, the attack appears to have been well-planned and carried out with precision. In this respect, it was fundamentally different than the events that brought hundreds of demonstrators to downtown Dallas Thursday—the police-custody deaths of black men in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and St. Paul, Minnesota, in a welter of chaos, confusion, and conflicting claims of guilt, innocence, and intent.

Baton Rouge and St. Paul, like so many of the similarly tragic police-custody deaths that preceded them, may have been the product of circumstance, or of incompetence, or maybe they were even crimes. Each must be examined in context and judged accordingly. But Dallas was cold-blooded murder—nothing more, nothing less. Attempts to assign equivalence to the horror of it—to suggest, as some are doing on social media, that Dallas is somehow just deserts for Baton Rouge or St. Paul or Baltimore or Ferguson, or even for Eric Garner’s death on Staten Island two long years ago—is morally repugnant.

Nor can this be blamed on guns. Guns are inanimate objects and don’t go around shooting people. It is the shooter who is the problem, not the gun. So far in 2016, 34 police officers have been murdered in the line of duty, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page, most by gunfire and others by vehicular assault. Many more have been wounded.

When officers are killed in the line of duty, other officers on patrol become more cautious. It’s only natural, they have families and want to go home at night.

For the media, America is in the grip of an orgy of crime, and wanton murder. These wanton murderers are wearing blue uniforms and police badges. It makes for exciting bylines and good copy. But it’s not true.

White policemen shooting unarmed black men accounted for less than 4 percent of fatal police shooting. In three quarters of  shooting incidents, cops were either under attack themselves or defending civilians, as the policemen in Dallas were doing — trying to protect civilian demonstrators.

According to the Department of Justice, blacks represent 12.6 percent of the population, but committed 52.5 percent of the murders in America from 1980 to 2008. This is not to say that there are not bad cops and killings that call for investigation and jury trials. The worst neighborhoods in Chicago, where gangs run wild, have a higher murder rate than world murder capitals like Honduras. (116.7 per 100,000 compared to 90.4 per 100,000).

Barack Obama has encouraged racial animus from the beginning in an effort to secure the black vote for Democrats. It’s what he did as a community organizer. That he wanted to assure black votes is not arguable; that he wanted to stoke black fears of racist police is unknown, though that is what has happened.

Black Lives Matter was launched in 2013 with a Twitter hashtag after neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman was acquitted in the death of Trayvon Martin. It was founded by radical Left activists, and has gone on to stir up resentment against “the system”  on college campuses across the country, responding to phony “hate” crimes, and increase demands for revolution and racial separation. Another outgrowth of communist/socialist agitation.

Heather MacDonald has been one of the most important voices in explaining American policing and the current attack on law and order. I would urge you to read her whole piece, from Imprimis.



Themes Loved by the Media, And the Consequences: by The Elephant's Child

If you inquire at Google about unarmed black men being shot by police, you will find that most newspapers in America seem to believe that it is an urgent crisis, young unarmed black men are being shot regularly by white policemen, and racism is sharply on the rise in the country. This piece from the Washington Post, dated August 8, 2015, is dramatic and typical, and remarkably biased.

Let’s examine a few facts. From a study from the American Enterprise Institute: (Do read the whole thing)

If you look beyond recent headlines about race in America, here is a surprising truth: Most black men in America are doing just fine. Most black men are not poor, most black men will not be incarcerated, most black men are gainfully employed, and most black men will marry.

Black men are CEOs of major corporations, Justices on the Supreme Court, Doctors, famous Movie Stars, Lawyers, Professors, Presidents, Inventors, and stars of every major sports team, they are Generals, authors, artists, and I’m pretty sure that most black women are doing just fine as well.

The Washington Post article linked above lists 17 ‘unarmed’ black men shot by police officers in 2015. Yet there were 990 people shot by police in 2015, in most cases armed and threatening. You have to read the numbers carefully, before coming to conclusions.

Here’s Heather MacDonald on the #Black Lives Matter movement, and what they miss about those police shootings, and the Washington Post data on fatal police shootings of civilians. Another article from MacDonald points out that there was a rise in violent crime beginning in the second half of 2014, up 76% in Milwaukee, 60% in St Louis, and 56% in Baltimore, and in most of America’s largest cities. Because of publicity about Ferguson, Baltimore and other cities, police officers were backing off from proactive policing in reaction to the hostility they were encountering in urban areas.

Officers had told me about being surrounded by angry, jeering crowds who cursed and threw water bottles and rocks at them when they tried to make an arrest. Suspects and bystanders stuck cell phones in officers’ faces and refused to comply with lawful orders. Officers were continuing to answer 911 calls with alacrity, but in that large area of discretionary policing—getting out of a squad car at 1 a.m., for example, to question someone who appears to have a gun or may be casing a target—many officers were deciding to simply drive on by rather than risk a volatile, potentially career-ending confrontation that they were under no obligation to instigate.

MacDonald called that “the Ferguson Effect,” and noted that applications to police academies were way down. Young men were not convinced that risking their lives daily to protect the American people was worth it if they were also going to face daily assaults and abuse from the people they were trying to protect.

In National Review, David French recalls the time when it was dangerous to walk outside at night, and black leaders called for a crackdown on crime. And  he notes the dramatic change in New York City when Rudy Giuliani instituted a program of “broken windows policing” and the cops began to see their jobs as preventing crime rather than just solving crimes. The crime wave broke.

And he turns to an essay by Ta-Nehisi Coates in the Atlantic, which sees mass incarceration as consistent with America’s history of slavery and Jim Crow. Coates rejects messages that call for personal responsibility, pays no attention to black voices who cry for safety and justice in their own communities and focuses entirely on white supremacy, plunder and oppression.

To add to the problems of policing, we need to consider the “Butterfield Fallacy.” It is rooted in ideological prejudice. Fox Butterfield was a reporter for the New York Times “whose crime stories served as the archetype for his eponymous fallacy.”

“It has become a comforting story for five straight years, crime has been falling, led by a drop in murder,” Butterfield wrote in 1997. “So why is the number of inmates in prisons and jails around the nation still going up?’  He repeated the trope in 2003: “The nation’s prison population grew 2.6 percent last year, the largest increase since 1999, according to a study by the Justice Department. The jump came despite a small decline in serious crime in 2002.” And in 2004: “The number of inmates in state and federal prisons rose 2.1 percent last year, even as violent crime and property crime fell, according to a study by the Justice Department released yesterday.”

The ‘fallacy’ consists of misidentifying as a paradox, that which is a simple cause-and-effect relationship. When you put more bad guys in prison, crime goes down. This illusion is back in full effect today.

Those on the Left disapprove of sending people to prison because they think it is racially discriminatory. Yet more crimes are committed by black men.

In the upcoming election, Democrats are worried that black Americans who came out so strongly to vote for the first black president, may well not turn out so enthusiastically for either Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders. It may be merely a coincidence that #Black Lives Matter and the activists who turned out to stir up violence and protest in Ferguson and Baltimore were turned out along with Occupy activists to rouse up racial protests on American campuses where many young people will be voting for the first time.  And wherever there is an opportunity to rouse up racial animus, #Black Lives Matter is right there. If it is a coincidence, it’s an interesting one.

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Black Lives Matter, Racism, And A Conservative Perspective On Name-Calling. by The Elephant's Child

Here’s an interview with Larry Elder from the Dave Rubin Show, done about the same time as the Prager University video. It’s a longer conversation, just over 20 minutes, and really worth your time.

Larry is outspoken, opinionated, and has his facts all in a row.  All about Black Lives Matter, Conservatives, racism, Hollywood, and the art of calling names.



The Racial Protests Aren’t About What You Think They Are! by The Elephant's Child

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In a recent CBS News Special, correspondent Lee Cowan asked the president if, in spite of his promises to be the great uniter, the degree of anger and disagreement was a reflection on his tenure in the White House.  President Obama responded:

The one thing that gnaws on me is the degree of continued polarization. This has gotten worse over the last several years. And I think that in those early months, my expectation was that we could pull the parties together a little more effectively.

“Cowan then asked the president,’Do you wish in hindsight that maybe campaigning on that notion of changing the tone in Washington, do you wish you hadn’t campaigned as hard on that promise?'”

“That’s what the American people believe, and that’s what I still believe,” Obama said, jumping right back into his old ways.” (In other words, don’t blame me)

Ah yes, that is why Obama is governing by executive order so he doesn’t have to engage with Congress, and endure their disagreement. An election is coming up, and black voters might not come out since Obama is no longer on the ballot. It’s necessary for the community organizer-in-chief to stir things up a little. Starting with Ferguson, Missouri, we were told that George Soros was funding organizers to enliven the riots. Organizers from Ferguson went on to Baltimore to make sure there actually were riots.

The reason Mizzou students did not want the media taking pictures was because there were Ferguson and Occupy activists there giving them counsel. The issue is never the issue — the issue is always the revolution. Obama promised us that he intended to fundamentally change the United States of America — we just didn’t understand what he meant.

Breitbart News examined  Twitter accounts in Columbia, Missouri, and found individuals from #Black Lives Matter, who traveled from Ferguson to Baltimore, and Charleston. SC and published photos of them meeting with Student Body President Payton Head.

Paul Sperry explains how Obama is bankrolling a nonstop protest against “invented outrage,” and he’s doing it through Organizing for Action, (formerly Obama’s campaign organization Obama for America) He claims that OFA has trained more than 10,000 leftist organizers, who in turn are training more than 2 million youth in Alinsky street action. “The leftist group, which recently registered as a 501c4 nonprofit eligible for unlimited contributions, holds regular ‘organizing summits’ on college campuses.” And there’s ACORN as well.

Through social media, they mobilize flash mobs against “biased cops,” “climate-change deniers,” “Wall Street predators” and “gun extremists.” They hold rallies against conservative foes of gay marriage, LGBT rights, abortion and amnesty for illegal immigrants.

The president has egged on the #Black Lives Matter protesters and invited the founder to the White House, he assured the Occupy Wall Street protesters that he was on their side. But there is much less racism today, and there are fewer and fewer real targets. “Even professors, deans and chancellors who worship at the altar of diversity and multiculturalism are enduring their wrath, poetically suffering intolerances in the name of tolerance.”

But actions have consequences. The violent protests against the police have meant that police are more reluctant to go into poor black neighborhoods. Police across the country are having trouble finding recruits. Obama is releasing thousands of “non-violent” drug dealers from prison, numbers of them  who were armed when arrested — but they are “non-violent.”

At the Hoover Institution, James Huffman explores “The Real Cause of Campus Racism.” Colleges and Universities have made race and racial differences central to almost everything they do. And to make matters worse, those who accredit our universities make attention to race in admissions and programming a condition of accreditation. (This is an important and challenging essay, do read the whole thing.)

The University of Missouri, where the campus follies started, believed it could win the hearts and minds of black students by throwing its president to the racial protesters. But actions do indeed have consequences. Freshman applications are down 5% from the previous year and graduate student applications have plunged 19%. Pandering would seem to be a failure.

Even Victor Davis Hanson has noticed that polls confirm that Obama is the most polarizing president in recent memory — in a column titled “Still Polarizing After All These Years.” Dr. Hanson summarized the president’s divisiveness over his long seven years in office.  It is an ugly picture.

Obama has lost his party the Congress and most of the state legislatures. He has destroyed the centrist wing of the Democratic Party, and made his media apologists into caricatures of ministry of information megaphones. Obama ushered in an unprecedented any-means-necessary government amorality. Lois Lerner, a politicized IRS and a defunct ICE are its dividends. The secretary of Defense—four so far—is now a cabinet post designed to spawn after-office tell-all indictments of Obama. Scandals are normal now at the VA, IRS, NSA, ATF, EPA, and GSA, and from the AP surveillance and Solyndra to the Benghazi video-did-it talking points. The administration has reduced once-cherished departments such as the Secret Service, State Department, Justice Department and NASA into caricatures of incompetency.



This is Not Monopoly. There Are Consequences For Handing Out “Get Out of Jail Free Cards” by The Elephant's Child

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The jobs numbers for October are in and they are slightly encouraging, that is more people got hired than were expected. There were 271,000 new jobs, when the consensus expectation was only 183,000. Small improvements are exciting these days. Of course we don’t know what these jobs were, if they were all part-time fast food, not so good.  Long-term unemployment also increased, and only 62% of the labor force is actually working. Yet this is the best monthly report in a while.

White Americans have an  unemployment rate of 4.4 percent. Black Americans’ unemployment is 9.2 percent, 6.3 percent for Latinos, and 3.5 percent for Asians. There is obviously something to be said for Asian “tiger mothers” who demand that their children succeed in school.

Nobody likes to see the unemployment in the black community, and for black teenagers it is 25.6 percent, which means you have a lot of idle black teenagers. Another ugly statistic is that 72 percent of black children are born to unmarried mothers. There is a connection.

For the last year, a protest movement known as “Black Lives Matter” has topped the news. Triggered by the 2014 police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo.—the movement holds that the greatest threat facing young black men today are the police.  Yet over the past 45 years, per the CDC, police killings of blacks are down by 75 percent. What is increasing is the killing of police officers.

The number one, preventable cause of death among young black males is homicide— usually at the hands of other blacks.The number one cause of death of young white males is auto accidents.

It’s an election campaign year, so the Democratic National Committee had adopted a Black Lives Matter resolution that promotes the phony narrative that blacks remain the victims of racism, in the quest for votes. President Obama was once on the right track when he spoke out forcefully about the need for black fathers to be there to raise their sons to be good men.

In July, the president ordered “an initiative” that would address policing. Body cameras have been ordered, but most departments find it too expensive to outfit all their officers with body cameras. As the Black Lives Matter protests have heated up and more police are killed, police recruitment has dropped off sharply. Those who want to be policemen understand the risks, but believe the lives saved and communities protected make them worth it. Now, however, they seem to be saying “who needs that.”

In Eugene, Oregon, the federal government sued the police department because it would not consider non-citizens for the job of police officer. They agreed to pay a civil penalty and undergo federal monitoring for 3 years, in a settlement over allegations they violated anti-discrimination laws when hiring new police officers, by not hiring non-citizens.

President Obama is attempting to fundamentally redefine and mainstream criminal behavior by fast-tracking criminals’ federal employment applications, weakening criminal law penalties, and trafficking in get-out-of-jail-free cards for tens of thousands of imprisoned federal drug offenders.

Releasing prisoners because it’s not fair to keep them locked up for their crimes, defending lawless so-called sanctuary cities, and banning the metaphorical (and sometimes literal) criminal record box on job applications, are Obama’s goals.

It would seem to be the common misunderstanding of the Fox-Butterfield Effect which fails to grasp that when there are more men in prison and yet there is a drop in crime rates—that there’s a connection there.

“One of the things that I’ve consistently said as president is that I’m the president of all people,” Obama said Monday. “I am very proud that my presidency can help to galvanize and mobilize America on behalf of issues of racial disparity and racial injustice.”

The scheduled release of 6,112 allegedly non-violent drug offenders, the largest one-time release of federal inmates is unprecedented. The notion that federal prisons are filled with people incarcerated for smoking pot is false. These are in for dealing drugs, which some would consider a violent crime.

FBI Director James Comey said in a recent speech that when he was a prosecutor in Virginia:

The notion of a “non-violent” drug gang member would have elicited a tired laugh from a resident of Richmond’s worst neighborhoods. Because the entire trade was a plague of violence that strangled Richmond’s black neighborhoods. The lookouts, runners, mill-workers, enforcers, and dealers were all cut from the same suffocating cloth. Whether they pulled the trigger or not, those folks were killing the community.

The White House retainers freaked out when Comey warned of the “Ferguson effect” which has police failing to enforce the law or failing to defend themselves properly because they don’t want to be accused of racism. Thirty of the largest cities, including D.C. have seen homicides jump compared to last year. The head of the Drug Enforcement Agency joined in confirming “the Ferguson Effect.” Some of us might find Obama’s idea of filling the ranks of federal employees with former felons somewhat — amusing.

With the usual Democrat fondness for Orwellian euphemism, the Obama administration is now substituting the term “justice-involved youth” for  “juvenile delinquent.”  You can’t make this stuff up!




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