For this Grandma moment:
Granddaughter, Rowan Lynn, made her debut at 8:24 pm, 7 lbs 12 oz, 20 inches long
“If the reporter stays very still and very quiet long enough, he might be able to catch them grooming one another.” [Darleen Click]
MOORE, Okla. — The first thing Kevin Gibson did after returning to his house, torn apart by a powerful tornado Monday, was pull an American flag and a temporary flagpole from the corner of his partially standing garage.
Neighbors forlornly picking through the rubbish of their lives stopped to watch Gibson’s nephew, Sean Pontius, stick the pole into the ground and hoist the Stars and Stripes.
The flag-raising seemed to hearten the neighbors, as if assuring them that they would emerge triumphant from this disaster.
With the remnants of their lives lying around them, Gibson recalled, the neighbors began applauding and chanting: “Yes, sir! Raise that flag!”
In many ravaged neighborhoods in this Oklahoma City suburb, where Monday’s tornado was its fiercest, American flags have been popping up amid the ruins. They are hung from skeletal trees denuded of leaves and bark, stuck in the doors of cars turned upside down and draped over pieces of twisted metal embedded in the ground.
The shot of red, white and blue flying in a landscape of ashen brown is startling and powerfully defiant, seeming to embody the mettle of the national anthem.
And if the tone of this reporter, one of trying to make sense of these embarrassing primates in fly-over country, is facepalm worthy, the commentary is far worse. A cesspool of derision, condescension and out-right hatred.
I defy any Leftist to find similar hate from Oklahomans directed at New Yorkers post-9/11.
While I would try to say to such commenters, “Have you no shame?” I know that in order to actually feel shame, one must operate from some minimal standard of decency.
And as we have seen time and again, those of the Left possess no decency.
Here’s the common thread connecting today’s posts from me: the biggest problem the right has to overcome in order to salvage the republic is, in fact, the right itself — from those in the ruling class who actively conspire with the Democrats in deconstructing the country’s founding ideals to those who act as kneejerk defenders of the party under the guise of “realism” or “pragmatism,” guaranteeing themselves a shot at future employment within the establishment structure (with its attendant media mouthpieces) while guaranteeing that the rest of us will continue right on being forced to lose more slowly.
It is what it is what it is.
Thus endeth the sermon.
Charlotte Allen, TWS, as quoted by Ernst in the comments to one of my posts yesterday:
The main premise of “The Color of Empire” seemed to be that white people had created the idea of race, “the sole purpose of which is to rationalize the white race[.]” [W]hites some 400 years ago had created a skin-color-based category called “red” even though there are “500 different Native American nations, bands, and tribes.” They had also devised a category called “brown” for “Latinos,” “even though there’s no ‘Latino’ food and no ‘Latino’ language[.]”
This actually made some sense: If racial classifications are artificial (“socially constructed” was the way Hackman put it), lumping people together under a skin-color label who may have nothing linguistically or culturally in common, why not just get rid of the classifications altogether? Isn’t that exactly why conservatives like me oppose racial preferences and set-asides? But Hackman in fact focused obsessively on race, race, race, and color, color, color. [....] When I asked Hackman about why race seemed to be the prime focus of her workshop even though it supposedly didn’t exist, she told me that I needed to read up on “critical race theory.” She added: “We’re talking about a reclamation of racial categories.” In other words, racial categories are an oppressive white fantasy —until they prove to be useful for promoting race-based identity politics.
– and this piece, which I’ve reposted here several times, originally written in 1996 and published in the U of Denver student newspaper, and first published here at protein wisdom in early 2002, an excerpt from the conclusion I’ll offer here:
The point of all this being that to think of race as somehow socially constructed is to think of race, ultimately, as something essentially essential. Because what makes your memories yours, what makes your heritage yours, and what makes your culture yours is your insistence, ultimately, that it is yours by right, yours by birth, yours by essence. And so race, as it turns out, is either an essence or an illusion. Those who believe race to be an essence (say, the KKK, who base their ideas on bad science) have no need for a project of qualifying race as a social construct; and those who believe race to be non-essential have no grounds, theoretically, for promoting racial identity other than that same bad science (which, it turns out, underlies the constructivist argument), or else their social concern that we somehow need to continue the project of racial identity, for whatever the political reasons. [emphasis added]
And perhaps they are right. But maybe it’s time to seize on the lessons learned in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 terror attacks; that is, maybe it’s time we put aside our differences in order to construct a singular American identity. After all, we are each individuals, which is what makes us, ultimately, a nation.
Look: if we as classical liberals / legal conservatives are ever going to effectively combat the underlying ideological propositions that drive progressivism — and that we have been conditioned (by bullying, shame, and the sophistry of the academy and the emotional blackmail of identity groups) to accept or at least allow some degree of legitimacy — we will always be in the process of losing, of transformation away from individual autonomy and toward collectivism marked at particular points by the influence of favored identity blocs.
I point this out today because I have been trying to drive the very same arguments Ms Allen is now making since the very onset of this site — and well before that, even.
This isn’t complicated once you can be made to see it: the way the left manipulates language allows them to manipulate categories; it also allows them to manipulate thought by way of institutionalizing certain epistemological ideas as not only legitimate but “settled” as such (textualism being one important example that continues to hamstring many on the right who abide it and rely upon it for their own personal uses).
Here, the logic of their position is laid bare in a step by step analysis of how “social constructionism” of race works: and the irrefutable conclusion is that their position cannot withstand logical pressure, as Hackman admits.
Consequently, the leftist’s next move is to tell tell us — to demand, in fact — that logic isn’t a legitimate factor in determining the usefulness of what is logically incoherent. Instead, the usefulness itself is the thing — and it is one’s ability to wield the logically incoherent effectively, to in effect assert their epistemological will, that comes to count as what matters rather than any linguistic coherence, which is dismissed as inconsequential, the tyranny of the Enlightenment, the tyranny of the foundational.
I guess our best hope going forward is that conservative opinion leaders who haven’t been marginalized by the textualists and pragmatists begin picking up on such arguments and putting together the pieces to the point where they can make coherent arguments that reach the broad audience they’ve denied me.
And who knows? Maybe in another 11 years or so they’ll be ready to recognize the role of language in all of this, and begin putting together arguments that will help us overcome our blindspots, caught as we are inside the left’s game and operating under the left’s rules.
I am writing to alert you of several facts that to date seem repeatedly somehow to elude your sensibilities. Chief among them is this observation: You are a dinosaur, not a dignitary. You are a rubbery, liver-spotted fuck toy for the Democrats and the media, not a distinguished member of an august body whose honor you promote and protect. And your daughter, insofar as she pretends to conservatism of any sort, is even dumber than you are; which, looking at the glass as half full, means that thankfully we may not have to wait many generations for your family's political flame to finally, happily, die out.
-- Instead, that will likely happen on its own when your progeny and their progeny encounter great intellectual difficulty trying to figure out fire.
Your time is up, Senator. Your moment on the historical stage has passed, and you are left with a legacy of failure after failure that in DC somehow translates into stature. To borrow from Bill Ayers's (yes, Senator, I went there!) borrowing of Bob Dylan, you don't need a weatherman to see which way the wind blows.
Bow gracefully from the stage or be forced off it in ignominy. Time to take stock, Senator. Real stock -- not the bullshit that's fed you by your enablers and by the liberal backslapers who use you like a political dildo whenever they're feeling a little randy, then laugh behind your back when you volunteer to lube up yet again.
I offer these words with all due respect. Please consider them in the spirit with which they were offered.
cc: Sarah Palin.
If any of the online GOP mouthpieces noticed me anymore, what I’m about to write might be controversial
But since it’s just us here on the lunatic fringe, it likely won’t be very controversial at all. Or even unhelpful. Or True Believerish.
Though definitely still Visigothy.
Advanced: the GOP establishment knew prior to the 2012 election season that TEA Party groups were in fact being harassed, deterred, and molested by the IRS, effectively hamstringing the efforts of those groups to form and organize and educate and influence. They determined to keep their investigations into the matter cursory and didn’t press the matter. This we know to be fact.
Advanced: high-ranking Obama political appointees within the Treasury Department, along with the IG in charge of tax matters inside Treasury, knew prior to the 2012 election season that TEA Party groups were in fact being harassed, deterred, and molested by the IRS, effectively hamstringing the efforts of those groups to form and organize and educate and influence. They determined to keep this information from the public. This we know to be fact.
Advanced: Democrats in Congress and the Senate knew prior to the 2012 election season that TEA Party groups were in fact being harassed, deterred, and molested by the IRS, effectively hamstringing the efforts of those groups to form and organize and educate and influence. Several Senators, among them Manchin, Levin, and Franken, contacted the IRS and asked that the agency look into and audit these TEA Party groups — even though there existed no evidence against them of any wrongdoing and no proximate cause for the harassment that followed save these Senators’ dislike of their political challengers, particularly challengers that opposed the status quo in DC. This we know to be fact — just as we know to be fact that Levin chairs the committee that in the course of any real investigation into the IRS’s practices will investigate, presumably, the Congress that is responsible for them. That is, Levin, Franken, Manchin, and others not yet flushed out.
Advanced: GOP establishment groups largely were spared the treatment given to TEA Party groups, who we now knew were in fact being harassed, deterred, and molested by the IRS, effectively hamstringing the efforts of those groups to form and organize and educate and influence. Craig Shirley offers some detail here.
Advanced: the House is to this point resisting the appointment of a Special Prosecutor to look into what is a systemic problem within the IRS, as evidenced by prior scandals of just this sort under different Administrations.
Advanced: it is reasonable to conclude that, in the absence of appointing a Special Prosecutor, the establishment GOP leadership in the House, like the Democrats in the House and Senate, are reluctant to do any real digging into the systemic problems within the IRS that point to a history of politicians from both parties using the agency to molest their personal and political opponents. Instead, they will be content to jail a few functionaries and force others of higher internal stature to resign. These will be the scapegoats — and we will be told that the GOP House, with largely bi-partisan support, has excised the cancer from within the IRS, though they will concede that new safeguards need to put into effect to prevent future abuses.
THEREFORE: I propose that the GOP establishment, the Democrat establishment, and at least two higher ranking political officials in Treasury and one official from the IG’s office (and I suspect well beyond those so far identified, to include Obama’s advisors and campaign managers and the President himself) had no real desire, prior to the elections in 2012, to correct the systemic treatment by the IRS of TEA Party groups, who were in fact being harassed, deterred, and molested by the IRS, effectively hamstringing the efforts of those groups to form and organize and educate and influence.
THEREFORE: I conclude, not without reason, that the GOP establishment, by omission (if not commission — I suspected early on, and noted in passing, that we shouldn’t be too quick to pin the organized effort to curtail the effectiveness of the TEA Party on Democrats alone; the GOP establishment has evinced a clear disdain for TEA Party groups, and on many public occasions have sought to marginalize them, undermine them, and delegitimate them) — knowing before the election that TEA Party groups who were in fact being harassed, deterred, and molested by the IRS, effectively hamstringing the efforts of those groups to form and organize and educate and influence — affirmatively aided in the attacks on the TEA Party and conservatives.
The ruling class knew. And they circled the wagons with winks and nods and the occasion bit of theater. The establishment Republicans, the majority of whom are either overt statists or latent ones, have far more in common with the Democrat DC establishment than they do with the Hobbits who have tormented them by insisting that they represent their constituencies in ways those constituencies desire. They are co-conspirators in an attempt to turn us from a representative, constitutional republic, into a ruling class-led despotism, a soft tyranny, a class system based on rulers, cronies, subjects, and clients. Liberal fascism.
This is a rigged game. And these investigations are being orchestrated in such a way that they will produce fall guys and gals, create some political capital for the Republicans in their friendly game of political musical chairs, the winner enjoying temporary titular control over government and the ability to proffer largess to its favored constituencies (oftentimes, of course, they compromise, as we’re seeing with Comprehensive Immigration Reform, where we’re told the labor unions and the Chamber of Commerce have come to terms — that is, the cronies of each party have compromised in order to get something done), with the will of the people marginalized or ignored, dismissed as racist or xenophobic or some other such nonsense.
Our government is at war with us. All of our government at the national level, save for the few upstarts — TEA Partiers, ironically! — who are attacked consistently from both the left and by ruling class Republicans, many of whom have been entrenched in DC for years.
CONCLUSION: It’s time for radical reform to the government and an insistence by the people that the media be cleaned out of ideologues (or else compelled to present their biases forthrightly), that Congress begin dismantling the regulatory branch of government, and that we return to our Constitution as the basis for legitimate governance — with all that entails: a fundamental reassertion of the Declaration and the Bill of Rights and the plenary powers the states reserved for themselves as a condition of creating a United States; and a reduction to the size and scope of the federal government in keeping with the 9th and 10th Amendments and the enumerated powers described in the Constitution.
To secure this, we must reform the court system and provide foundational, coherent linguistic safeguards on how laws are legitimately interpreted and applied.
This is to be a government by, of, and for the people. Today it is the opposite: it exists to further entrench a ruling class at the expense of the will of the people, many of whom are reduced to voting for pre-selected candidates who don’t represent their interests — the pitch being that these pre-selected candidates are the lesser of two evils. And what this scandal should be telling us is that the ruling class sees in the TEA Party a real existential threat to their attempts to establish and institutionalize the liberal fascist paradigm that by its very nature rewards those inside the government, inside the bureaucratic state, and those in the private sector with the capital to sell themselves as clients to the state in exchange for protections from competition.
We live in soft tyranny. And every day that we refuse to acknowledge this is one more day for the roots of despotism and cronyism to grow deeper, until they eventually strangle the lifeblood from the American Experiment.
As serr8d reminded me today on Twitter, I’ve written of this before — and laid out just who and what it is the ruling class is working together, with no concern for party, to destroy: it is the foundational idea of America itself, and in specific, those who have rediscovered that idea and have bravely used it to confront the usurpers who now run our government.
The time for asserting the people’s will is now. The time for insisting that the people’s will be obliged is drawing nearer.
In the continuing “faux scandal” of IRS targeting TEA Party, 9/12, Pro-Life and Pro-Israel groups in order to seal Obama’s 2012 re-election, let’s remember that Obama’s tactic of harassing opponents and their supporters has a long history.
Let’s take a romp down memory lane and review the typical Obama campaign strategy. Obama became a U.S. senator only by virtue of David Axelrod’s former employer, the Chicago Tribune, ripping open the sealed divorce records of Obama’s two principal opponents.
The press was a willing accomplice in Obama’s unclean road to the Senate. Also, little examined, was the scorched earth, mod-inspired Chicago tactics used by the Obama campaign in 2008.
On Aug. 21, 2008, the conservative American Issues Project ran an ad highlighting ties between candidate Obama and Bill Ayers, formerly of the Weather Underground. The Obama campaign and supporters were furious, and they pressured TV stations to pull the ad—a common-enough tactic in such ad spats.
What came next was not common. Bob Bauer, general counsel for the campaign (and later general counsel for the White House), on the same day wrote to the criminal division of the Justice Department, demanding an investigation into AIP, “its officers and directors,” and its “anonymous donors.” Mr. Bauer claimed that the nonprofit, as a 501(c)(4), was committing a “knowing and willful violation” of election law, and wanted “action to enforce against criminal violations.”
AIP gave Justice a full explanation as to why it was not in violation. It said that it operated exactly as liberal groups like Naral Pro-Choice did. It noted that it had disclosed its donor, Texas businessman Harold Simmons. Mr. Bauer’s response was a second letter to Justice calling for the prosecution of Mr. Simmons. He sent a third letter on Sept. 8, again smearing the “sham” AIP’s “illegal electoral purpose.” [...]
The Bauer onslaught was a big part of a new liberal strategy to thwart the rise of conservative groups. In early August 2008, the New York Times trumpeted the creation of a left-wing group (a 501(c)4) called Accountable America. Founded by Obama supporter and liberal activist Tom Mattzie, the group—as the story explained—would start by sending “warning” letters to 10,000 GOP donors, “hoping to create a chilling effect that will dry up contributions.” The letters would alert “right-wing groups to a variety of potential dangers, including legal trouble, public exposure and watchdog groups digging through their lives.” As Mr. Mattzie told Mother Jones: “We’re going to put them at risk.”
The Bauer letters were the Obama campaign’s high-profile contribution to this effort—though earlier, in the spring of 2008, Mr. Bauer filed a complaint with the FEC against the American Leadership Project, a group backing Hillary Clinton in the primary. “There’s going to be a reckoning here,” he had warned publicly. “It’s going to be rough—it’s going to be rough on the officers, it’s going to be rough on the employees, it’s going to be rough on the donors. . . Whether it’s at the FEC or in a broader criminal inquiry, those donors will be asked questions.” The campaign similarly attacked a group supporting John Edwards.
American Leadership head (and Democrat) Jason Kinney would rail that Mr. Bauer had gone from “credible legal authority” to “political hatchet man”—but the damage was done. As Politico reported in August 2008, Mr. Bauer’s words had “the effect of scaring [Clinton and Edwards] donors and consultants,” even if they hadn’t yet “result[ed] in any prosecution.”
The same tactics were used against any and all supporters of Romney in 2012. Never before has a President called private citizens to slander them as “less-than-reputable” and “betting against America” for the crime of exercising their First Amendment rights.
There might not be any bright-line evidence that King Barry give any direct order for the IRS to strangle grass-roots opposition in the crib. But like Henry II, he really didn’t have to …
“Will no one rid me of
this turbulent priest these troublesome groups?”
This sounds… familiar somehow…
(thanks to Tom W)