March 29, 2011

"New York State has succeeded in creating the most hostile environment for Blacks in the country."

Walter Russell Mead's Blog:

...Two milestones in the long, painful decline of the blue social model were reached this week and reported, of all places, in the pages of the very éminence grise of the monde bleu: the New York Times.

The first was a piece of national and historical news: The Census reported that waves of blue state blacks fled the stagnant job opportunities, high taxes and rotten social conditions of the mostly blue northern states to seek better lives for themselves in the south. The second milestone was local and literary: Bob Herbert, for many years the only regular Black columnist on the New York Times' op-ed page, has written his last column before stepping down.

The Census story is a shocker. First, according to the Times, the Blacks leaving tend to be the "younger and better educated". Second, the three states Blacks left in largest numbers don't just include snake-bit Michigan; the other two are Illinois and New York. Within those states, Chicago and the city of the New York (widely considered among the most successful cities in the country) are the places Blacks are deserting. 17 percent of the Black flight from Big Blue is from the Empire State; after almost a century of trailblazing social policy, New York State has succeeded in creating the most hostile environment for Blacks in the country.

It gets worse. One would think that the Blacks who choose to stay in the cold, unwelcoming North would cluster in the cities where more liberal and humane governance models mandate such generous policies as "living wage" laws and where all the beautiful features of the blue social model can be experienced at full strength...

...The failure of blue social policy to create an environment which works for Blacks is the most devastating possible indictment of the 20th century liberal enterprise in the United States. Helping Blacks achieve the kind of equality and opportunity long denied them was more than one of many justifications for blue social policy: it was the defining moral task that has challenged and shaped American liberalism for the last fifty years....

In my more cynical moments I suspect that the civil rights movement was never about helping blacks. It was about liberals getting power. AND, something even more intoxicating than power--the opportunity to feel superior!

And of course big-government/socialistic policies always tend to destroy the poor and give power to the intelligentsia.

This is also interesting from the perspective of the 70-year cycle. Every 70 year period in American politics has been partly defined by the question of race. In the first we tried to let the question sleep--that was a compromise that made the Revolution possible. The second 70 years was the Civil War and Republican dominance afterwards. The third was of Democrat dominance, with the civil rights movement as a center piece. In the fourth, now begun, a great civil rights theme will be education, and breaking the stranglehold of the Corrupt teachers unions and corrupt Democrats that make so many inner-city schools hell-holes that destroy the very minorities the Left claims to care about.

Posted by John Weidner at 11:27 PM

March 26, 2011

if we meet again, you will know me

When you remember me, it means that you have carried something of who I am with you, that I have left some mark of who I am on who you are. It means that you can summon me back to your mind even though countless years and miles may stand between us. It means that if we meet again, you will know me. It means that even after I die, you can still see my face and hear my voice and speak to me in your heart.

For as long as you remember me, I am never entirely lost. When I'm feeling most ghost-like, it is your remembering me that helps remind me that I actually exist. When I'm feeling sad, it's my consolation. When I'm feeling happy, it's part of why I feel that way. If you forget me, one of the ways I remember who I am will be gone. If you forget, part of who I am will be gone. "Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom." the good thief said from his cross (Luke 23:42). There are perhaps no more human words in all of Scripture, no prayer we can pray so well.

      -- Frederick Buechner

Posted by John Weidner at 10:02 PM

On rainy days I dine alone...

The Dean's Manner of Living

On rainy days alone I dine
Upon a chick and pint of wine,
On rainy days I dine alone,
And pick my chicken to the bone;
But this my servant much enrages,
No scraps remain to save board-wages.
In weather fine I nothing spend,
But often spunge upon a friend;
Yet, where he's not so rich as I,
I pay my club, and so good b'ye.

Posted by John Weidner at 9:41 PM

March 24, 2011

There's a word for those people...

Mark Steyn:

Louise Bagshawe, the chick-lit author and Conservative MP, wrote a piece for the London Telegraph wondering why she hadn't heard about the Fogel murders until she read my Corner post Dead Jews is no news.� Where, she asks, is the BBC coverage?

As I said in my post, there are circles of depravity: The relatively small number of people willing to decapitate a baby; the larger number of Palestinians happy to celebrate the decapitation of a baby; and the massed ranks of Western media anxious to obscure the truth about the nature of the event. The comments below Miss Bagshawe's column provide a glimpse of a fourth circle — the large numbers of Westerners who, even when confronted with the reality of what happened, are nevertheless eager to rationalize it as a legitimate response to a legitimate grievance.

For all the frictions between the aging, fading natives of Europe and their young, assertive Muslim populations, on this one issue at least there is remarkable comity.

A word for all the Jew/Zionist/Israel haters (they're all the same thing). The word is "losers."

If you were making really long-term economic bets, you might want to consider anti-semitism as inverse to economic growth and civilizational health.

Posted by John Weidner at 9:27 AM

March 21, 2011

Bombing for oil...

Let me see if I have this right: wars fought under Republican presidents are for bad things, like stealing oil from the nations we war on, getting more money for the fat-cats that own the War Machine™, and oppressing Brown Native Peoples™. Whereas wars fought under Democratic presidents are for good things, like getting rid of evil dictators with bad dress sense, helping the scrappy and grass-roots Rebels™ (who represent all that is good and right, of course) in those countries, and making sure no one can restrict the vital flow of oil which is needed to keep poor people warm. Just checking!

And my own observation-of-the-day: Have you ever noticed how, when the President is a Republican, and our troops are on the ground, patrolling night and day, risking their lives... the "anti-war" activist types refer to this as "bombing." As in, "Why are we bombing Iraq? What did they do to us?"

But when Democrat Presidents go to war, "bombing" is actually what they do! Clinton in Kosovo, Obama doubling drone strikes, and now in Libya... And yet somehow there's nothing wrong with that?

Posted by John Weidner at 11:29 AM

March 19, 2011


I have a Facebook account, but have almost entirely stopped using it. Because the things I really want to say don't fit the format.

A good example was the other day, when a "pacifist" posted that our military's humanitarian assistance to Japan was all fine and well, but that we should remember that an army is intended to kill people and destroy things.

Now that is a very stupid thing to write. But a rebuttal would bore and perplex most of those who are my "friends" on Facebook. (and of course would be wasted on the person in question.) Blogs are much better for such replies.

The problem with the statement is that an army is a tool of the state. And in a state like ours, a representative democracy, an army is a tool of the people. Of us! If our army smashes things, the real actors are the people of this country. If America bombs Bormenia, WE did it. You and I.

There is a certain type of person, very common these days, who want to fudge that point! Why? Because their pacifism, or anti-war activism, or whatever, is a sham! A pacifist is a person who has renounced violence as a tool to attain his ends. But these fake-pacifists are in fact people who have lost all higher meaning in their lives, and no longer believe in anything. They are people for whom nothing is worth fighting for. So their pretense that they are acting out of conscience or morality is a lie.

They try to create the impression that our military is some kind of autonomous death cloud, some miasma of evil. Then they can oppose the military, and pretend that that is somehow "pacifism." And feel moral and superior, even while enjoying all the good things our superb military provides us, such as peace and safety.

Actually, I suspect that if there are any "real" pacifists among the fakes, they are pretty much fakes, too. They all make sure to live in safe places. Which are kept safe by cops and soldiers. When I hear of pacifists getting killed because they won't call the cops when hoodlums are breaking down their door at night... then maybe I might guess they are for real.

But of course they do call the cops. And the police are also our tools, who do what we the citizens ask. If I call the police because someone's breaking in, I'm starting an action which may lead to people having large holes shot in them by my hired gunmen. Now I'm fine with that. I think about these things a lot. And I accept the moral responsibility. Including the possibility that things may go all random, and the wrong people are killed. That comes with the package.

And I think that's part of our duty as citizens. To make life-and-death choices. To think things through, and sometimes to decide that deadly force is necessary. Just as I thoughtfully decided (and still feel) that our invasion of Iraq was correct and morally justified. So I bear some of the responsibility, and some of the credit if things turn out well in the long run.

And actually almost any political decision has life-and-death consequences. If you vote for more money for X, that means less money for Y, even if you can't see Y. You have a duty to see it, to imagine it, to foresee the consequences and take responsibility. Choosing or voting for "good things" does not get you off the hook, morality-wise. People may suffer or die because you have starved them of the resources that went to your pet project. Even "pacifists" slaughter people in the voting booth.

And deciding to do nothing usually has life-and-death consequences too. Obviously so, though people wish to slither past this truth. Doing nothing doesn't get you off the hook. Doing nothing is often an evil choice.

US Cruiser fires missile
Posted by John Weidner at 9:17 PM

March 17, 2011

Decline? What decline...

Berkeley physicist Richard Muller on Climategate, and "hide the decline."

As a simplified explanation, the phrase "hide the decline," from the Climategate e-mails, refers to tree-ring proxy data, used to estimate temperatures from the past before thermometers. The ugly fact is that the data shows global temps going down in the late 20th century. As you will see in the video. Researcher Keith Briffa [Link] substituted measured temperatures for proxy temperatures for that period, and did so in a way that was not obvious.

That can sometimes be a legitimate thing to do—often data-sets are incomplete, or show anomalies that are clearly wrong. Then one adds data from some other source to give a larger picture.

BUT, in this case, the proxy data also failed to show the warming of the Medieval Warm Period. You know, the time when Greenland had farms, and England produced wine. In that case, Briffa was perfectly happy to say that the tree-ring data was an oracle of truth, since warmists want, above all, to kill the Medieval Warm, which contradicts the narrative that we are now in some sort of "unprecedented" warming.

Posted by John Weidner at 11:11 AM

March 14, 2011

Been too busy to blog much...

...But I had to post this. Ted Gundy, an 85 year-old WWII sniper, is honored at Ft. Benning, And gets accurate hits at 300 yards with a replica of his old rifle. And at 1,000 yards with modern equipment.

Posted by John Weidner at 9:48 AM

March 8, 2011

"Water, water, everywhere, Nor any drop to drink"

Hugh Hewitt, The Marcellus and Utica Shale Reserves:

The Wall Street Journal this morning reports on the Utica shale reserves underlying Ohio.� Along with the reserves of the Marcellus shale formation, the energy future of the U.S. is looking much much brighter than it did even five years ago.

If producers are allowed to explore, drill and transport the reserves. I am going to talk with Kathryn Zuberbuhler, president and executive director of the Marcellus Shale Coalition about the importance of these reserves and the attempts by the New York Times and others to use standard issue scare tactics to stop the utilization of this immense resource.

UPDATE: Learned from the interview that V�& M Star is building a significant new steel plant in Youngstown connected to the shale exploration and development. That is just one example�of what these recourses mean and why serious federal and state energy policies will support drilling and pipeline projects across the region.

And I hear gas is hitting $5 a gallon. "Water, water, everywhere, Nor any drop to drink" Gee, if only we had a Republican presidential candidate who was strong on energy policy, to take advantage of this situation.

Posted by John Weidner at 7:39 AM

March 6, 2011

The work of heaven alone was material... The work of hell is entirely spiritua

This is from Chesterton's Saint Thomas Aquinas: "The Dumb Ox" (You can find it on the Web, here.) It is a work of surpassing excllence and charm; indeed, one that is very hard to quote in a blog-post, because one wants the next paragraph too, and the next...

(I've also converted the web text into e-pub format, so I can read it on my iPhone. I can provide a copy if anyone wants one...)

...What is called the Manichean philosophy has had many forms; indeed it has attacked what is immortal and immutable with a very curious kind of immortal mutability. It is like the legend of the magician who turns himself into a snake or a cloud; and the whole has that nameless note of irresponsibility, which belongs to much of the metaphysics and morals of Asia, from which the Manichean mystery came.

But it is always in one way or another a notion that nature is evil; or that evil is at least rooted in nature. The essential point is that as evil has roots in nature, so it has rights in nature. Wrong has as much right to exist as right. As already stated this notion took many forms. Sometimes it was a dualism, which made evil an equal partner with good; so that neither could be called an usurper. More often it was a general idea that demons had made the material world, and if there were any good spirits they were concerned only with the spiritual world. Later, again, it took the form of Calvinism, which held that God had indeed made the world, but in a special sense, made the evil as well as the good: had made an evil will as well as an evil world. On this view, if a man chooses to damn his soul alive, he is not thwarting God's will but rather fulfilling it. In these two forms, of the early Gnosticism and the later Calvinism, we see the superficial variety and fundamental unity of Manicheanism. The old Manicheans taught that Satan originated the whole work of creation commonly attributed to God. The new Calvinists taught that God originates the whole work of damnation commonly attributed to Satan. One looked back to the first day when a devil acted like a god, the other looked forward to a last day when a god acted like a devil. But both had the idea that the creator of the earth was primarily the creator of the evil, whether we call him a devil or a god.

Since there are a good many Manicheans among the Moderns, as we may remark in a moment, some may agree with this view, some may be puzzled about it, some may only be puzzled about why we should object to it. To understand the medieval controversy, a word must be said of the Catholic doctrine, which is as modern as it is medieval. That "God looked on all things and saw that they were good" contains a subtlety which the popular pessimist cannot follow, or is too hasty to notice. It is the thesis that there are no bad things, but only bad uses of things. If you will, there are no bad things but only bad thoughts; and especially bad intentions. Only Calvinists can really believe that hell is paved with good intentions. That is exactly the one thing it cannot be paved with. But it is possible to have bad intentions about good things; and good things, like the world and the flesh have been twisted by a bad intention called the devil. But he cannot make things bad; they remain as on the first day of creation. The work of heaven alone was material; the making of a material world. The work of hell is entirely spiritual...

Posted by John Weidner at 9:18 AM

March 4, 2011

One-off's... No pattern to be seen here, folks...

William M. Briggs, Statistician, Reaction To The Latest Attack In Frankfurt:

...The spin from the military and from the Obama government regarding Army Major Nidal Hasan's bloody Allahu Akbarization of Fort Hood said he was a troubled man, influenced only by himself.

The story from Scotland when they let Abdel Basset al-Boom-Boom al-Megrahi free was that the poor man's manhood had shriveled beyond toleration, and that he killed because he was a troubled man, influenced only by himself.

The reason the Obama administration has canceled the planned prosecution of Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, the man who Allahu Akbared 17 sailors on the USS Cole in October of 2000, was because they were concerned that this troubled man, who was influenced only by himself, would not receive a fair trial from a military tribunal.

From these instances, and others similar to them, we can guess that Mr Obama, a man who never troubled to learn the pronunciation of corpsman, will say that the Kosovoan who Allahu Akbared our airmen in Germany yesterday did so because he was troubled, that he was influenced only by himself.

On no account are we to be influenced by the vast accumulation of evidence and draw the troublesome conclusion that radical Islamists have it in for the USA and her citizens. That would be—dare we say it?—a racist conclusion....
More here...
Posted by John Weidner at 11:34 AM

March 1, 2011

Even the optimists are pessimistic...

Scott is dead-on... We seem to be well and truly hosed:

I talked to one of my little buddies tonight over cervezas. Guy is a top hand on off-shore support boats, the ones that make drilling platforms work. Work is drying up. Rigs are moving to other continents. Permits are not being let. All of the preceding is shallow-water, not deep stuff like what blew up last year and killed all the stupid pelicans.

THE single most frightening thing he told me tonight was that nobody he's talked to, and he knows a lot of people after several decades in the industry...NOBODY has projected work for 2011. Nobody.

If you know anything about the oil industry, then the fact that not one single oilman is projecting off-shore work for the remaining 10 months of this year of our Lord, 2011, should frighten the ever-loving FUCK out of you.

Lookie here...I've never met a more optimistic breed of man than the oilman. Not even the nerds who made the 2001 bust into the globe-rocking meltdown that it was, were as optimistic as the oilmen I've known for well on 40 years of listening to the grown-ups. If they are projecting NOTHING, well, hell, the game is up.

That kind of talk has me extremely fretful. I'm just a hayseed, but even I know this entire country can't live off of Facebook ad sales and solar panel installations... ain't gonna happen.

Look, this is just the kind of thing I've been blogging about ad nauseum. If you trace the causes back you will come to liberals in government. But they are not liberals anymore--they are something else. There's no "liberal" reason to kill the oil industry during a recession. That's not "liberal."

We see the same thing all around. There's no liberal reason to always side with tyrants and hate the idea of bringing democracy and freedom to oppressed peoples. Harry Truman or JFK would have said that that's crazy. And it is crazy.

Posted by John Weidner at 10:21 PM