American Elephants


The Perilous Quest for Just the Right Candidate by The Elephant's Child

Democrats are, as they say, up the river without a paddle. We had the interminable Democrat debates which resolved to a great lack of enthusiasm, and they finally, maybe, might have, settled on former Vice President Joe Biden. Mr. Biden has been accused of sexual abuse in his senate career at some point, by someone who had timely evidence in having told others at the time, but there are a lot of accusations of sexual abuse out there, and the “believe all women” thingy seems to have fallen by the wayside.

Of more concern is that Mr. Biden seems to be showing some signs of confusion and forgetfulness, his age is a worry (as President he would be 82), and there are questions about his son Hunter Biden’s business activity, The Democrats were alarmed by the popularity of socialist Bernie Sanders, and casting around for a better candidate. Enthusiasm for Michelle Obama. I don’t know that being married to a President is a qualification, but a wife may have learned something in the White House. Elizabeth Warren has been touted, but she has a fairly vast bunch of detractors. The idea of a woman of color seems particularly popular as it checks off the female button and the race button at the same time, and Democrats pay a lot of attention to checking off diversity buttons. That proves that they are not racist, and are indeed nice.

It seems that the Democrat convention, whenever it turns out to be, will be fairly entertaining. A former presidential advisor has suggested Hillary as the candidate with Obama as VP, but that is prohibited by the 12th amendment. A President may not serve more than two terms, and anyone ineligible to be president is also ineligible for the Vice Presidency. Republicans are inclined to choose someone who has clear ideas about what he (or she) wants to accomplish for the United States of America. Democrats want to check off diversity buttons, to prove once again that they are nice, and not racist.

Democrats are trying desperately to prove that President Trump has somehow messed up with his Covid-19 efforts, but Democrat Governors are clearly not doing well with their decisions, and the locked-down people are getting more than restless. People want and need to go back to work. Too many people simply do not have a financial cushion to carry them over, and are facing going to food banks that are unprepared for that kind of rush.

President Trump seems to have done a quite remarkable job, especially in shutting down immigration from China early on, fulfilling the needs of Governors around the country, and coming up with supplies where they were needed. The Democrat Media is working hard at trying to discredit his every move, which leads to President Trump’s need to extol his accomplishments, which in turn is demonized by the Democrat Media.

If you have not found the new website https://justthenews.com. I urge you to add it to your list. Founded by John Solomon, excellent journalist long with Investors Business Daily. Another excellent website is https://amgreatness.com.



The Elephant’s Guidelines for Today! by The Elephant's Child

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Looking at the news, listening to the radio. We are sequestered at home, avoiding going out in King County, Washington, ground zero for COVID-19. Confirmed cases have increased to 793 — 131 new cases today. That suggests that more testing  of those who have flu symptoms is catching more people in the early stages. This is a good thing. If you have no symptoms, you probably won’t get tested yet. You have been told over and over what precautions you should take. Do it.

There are people broadcasting who are anxiously demanding that “We need answers.” Well, there aren’t any. At this late date, pharmacists are still warning people to get their flu shots. Do you know how many people died from the flu this year? I don’t either, but it is apparently a significant number. We haven’t ever experienced anything like the current virus. It is related to previous corona viruses, which is why this is called COVID-19. There were, I assume, a previous 18. There are shortages of masks, gloves, ventilators, and whatever supplies the hospital staffs require. Companies are gearing up to produce larger quantities.  Some auto companies are reported to be gearing up to produce ventilators. Americans and American industry try to respond to the nation’s needs.

There is apparently plenty of toilet paper, and the stores are getting stocked up again, but there are complications. Truckers are finding closed rest stops, closed restaurants. Someone here had their car broken into to steal the toilet paper left in the back seat. Toilet paper companies are hard at work producing more.

President Trump has been aware that bad regulations can cause bigger problems, and is trying to lift those regulations that are not helpful in the current environment. Governors are not experts in contagious viruses and what is needed. A lot of businesses are being put out of business—dine in restaurants are hard hit. Those suddenly unemployed will find other industries hiring. Amazon is hiring large numbers, and there is a clear need for more delivery services for those sequestered at home, but needing food and medicine.

So if you are confined to your home, what do you do? Read those unread books on the shelf, learn a new language online. Do all those little jobs around the house that you have been putting off.  Do some research online and learn a new skill. It’s amazing what you can learn online if you try. Start writing that family history, or start researching it. Where did you come from and when, and what do you know about your family?

CNN staffers have admitted that their obsessive Anti-Trump coverage will not stop until Trump dies. Do read that link! Revealing! Just what we thought.

Hot Air reports that Red and Blue America aren’t experiencing the same pandemic. Democrats are expressing more concerns.  States with Republican governors have been slower or less likely to impose restrictions on their residents. So far, the greater clusters of the disease, and the most aggressive responses to it have been centered in a few large, Democrat-leaning metropolitan areas, including Seattle, New York, San Francisco and Boston.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper stated flatly that if China was more transparent, we could have contained the corona virus in China. It is common to communist countries that they are always frightened of overthrow, or allowing their subjects to doubt. Had they notified the world that they had a problem when they discovered they had a problem, they could have gotten help and the virus might have been contained in China. Instead, Italy, Iran, Spain and other countries are fighting off the disease. Iran  A lot of death could have been avoided.

Seattle is showing some signs of slowing down, but it is too early to be sure. Other Good News: The tax deadline has been extended to July 15.



Sharyl Attkisson: All About Fake News! Is it Real? by The Elephant's Child

Here’s Sharyl Attkisson giving a ‘TED Talk’ at the University of Nevada, on the matter of “fake news.” There’s no one better to explain just what the problem is, and why it is a problem. She has had her own battles with truth in journalism, and emerged triumphant.

We depend on the national news media to give us factual, current news. It increasingly seems that reporters have little acquaintance with history, and little understanding of the traditional role of journalism in a free country. Fortunately, the new media allows us to be our own fact checkers. It’s more work for us, but we can track down the truth, if we make the effort.



And About That Fake News… by The Elephant's Child


If you forced every website that presents the news to remove any pieces that are simply what some celebrity said, would there be anything left? How many “journalists” would lose their jobs? In the age of Twitter and Facebook, it can hardly be called ‘work”— you just follow them and whenever they say something, er, interesting, there’s your piece. But that can hardly be called “news” either. If you eliminated all the inane comments, would there be anything left?

Could we try it? Pretty please?



Insist on Clarity. It Is More Important Than You Know. by The Elephant's Child
December 7, 2008, 6:34 pm
Filed under: History, Media Bias, Terrorism | Tags: , , , ,

Today, December 7th, is Pearl Harbor Day, a “day that will live in infamy” as President Roosevelt said in his broadcast to the American people. The American people learned about what had happened by listening to the radio.  There was no television, no instant pictures of the attack, no rush of pundits to tell us how to think about the event and what it meant and what vocabulary to use in thinking about it.

“A little over a month ago”, according to the Wall Street Journal, the  head of Japan’s Air Force, Gen. Toshio Tamogami, was fired by Prime Minister Taro Aso after he entered and won the grand prize in a history essay contest in which he advanced some very interesting ideas.  Among other things, Gen. Tamogami wrote that President Franklin Roosevelt entrapped Japan into carrying out Pearl Harbor, that Japan never waged a war of aggression, and if Japan had not fought the war it may have very well become a ‘white nation’s colony’.”

Historical revisionism is nothing new. Most countries involved in World War II have developed their own version of its story. But our current age is beset with moral equivalence and political correctness that confuse understanding.  Recent surveys show that civics and real history are unfamiliar subjects for Americans. Precise use of language is no longer considered important.

This time around, it is Bombay (or Mumbai for the politically correct).  Mark Steyn points out the morally equivalent use of language that interferes with our understanding of this horrific event.

This time around — Bombay — it was the Associated Press that filed a story about how Muslims “found themselves on the defensive once again about bloodshed linked to their religion”.

Oh, I don’t know about that.  In fact, you’d be hard pressed from most news reports to figure out the bloodshed was “linked” to any religion, least of all one beginning in “I-” and ending in “-slam”.  In the three years since those British bombings, the media have more or less entirely abandoned the offending formulations — “Islamic terrorists,” “Muslim extremists” — and by the time of the assault on Bombay found it easier just to call the alleged perpetrators “militants” or “gunmen” or “teenage gunmen,” as in the opening line of this report in the Australian: “An Adelaide woman in India for her wedding is lucky to be alive after teenage gunmen ran amok…”

…Tom Gross produced a jaw-dropping round-up of Bombay media coverage: The discovery that for the first time in an Indian terrorist atrocity, Jews had been attacked, tortured, and killed produced from the New York Times a serene befuddlement; “It is not known if the Jewish center was strategically chosen, or if it was an accidental hostage scene.”

Hmm.  Greater Bombay forms one of the world’s five biggest cities.  It has a population of nearly 20 million.  But only one Jewish center, located in a building that gives no external clue as to the bounty waiting therein.  An “accidental hostage ” that one of the “practitioners” just happened to stumble upon? “I must be the luckiest jihadist in town.  What are the odds?”

How are people to understand Bombay, or London, or Bali, or 9/11 or Iraq if they are confronted with such obfuscating language? It matters.  Careless journalism and deliberately false journalism can lead to misunderstandings that can have devastating consequences.

In a well-planned attack on iconic Bombay landmarks symbolizing great power and wealth, the “militants” nevertheless found time to divert 20 percent of their manpower to torturing and killing a hundful of obscure Jews helping the city’s poor in a nondescript building.  If they were just “teenage gunmen” or “militants” in the cause of Kashmir, engaged in a more or less conventional territorial dispute with India, why kill the only rabbi in Bombay?…

And yet we take it for granted that Pakistani “militants” in a long-running border dispute with India would take time out of their hectic schedule to kill Jews.  In going to ever more baroque lengths to avoid saying “Islamic” or “Muslim” or “terrorist.” we have somehow managed to internalize the pathologies of these men.

Language matters, but it is up to us to be alert to the potential of language to mislead, to understand what is not said as well as what is said.



Rest in Peace, Mr. Buckley by American Elephant
February 27, 2008, 2:00 pm
Filed under: History, News, Politics | Tags: , , ,

William F. Buckley Jr.

William F. Buckley Jr. 1925-2008

William F. Buckley Jr., author, columnist, founder of National Review, towering intellect, the primary architect of modern conservatism, and a national treasure has died, at his desk, at the age of 83.

Our thoughts go to his family, friends and many loved ones.

Fellow admirers would do well to read the many excellent tributes that are rapidly accumulating at National Review, and on their blog, The Corner. Fellow conservatives would do well to pay tribute to Mr. Buckley by redoubling their efforts to advancing our shared ideals.

I think he would expect no less.




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