Stop and think,  collected — 2008

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Rod's revenge. I know I've said some hard things about Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich — while suggesting that he's nothing more than a medium-size lump on the broad continuum of all pols — but unexpectedly I'm starting to be a fan of the man. I always enjoy seeing self-righteous Red Guards hoist sky high on any of their numerous petards, and now old Blago has blowed 'em up real good. The comrade commissars in control of the Senate have been harrumphing about how they'd refuse to seat anyone whom Blago appointed to fill the Obama vacancy — whereupon he up and named an old Negro hack named Burris. If the comrade commissars reject Burris, there will be no Negroes in the Senate.

Will the Guards really dare to reject him, offending The African American Communi-TEE and hordes of racially soggy whites? I'm laying in some popcorn and Junior Mints. Should be a fun show. [Nicholas Strakon]

Modine Herbey comments: The Guards are a clever bunch of lads and lassies. Depending on what happens to Blago in the near term, I wouldn't be surprised if we saw Comrade Senators cobble together some kind of Negro Replacement Strategy, allowing them to seat a Person of (the Correct) Color who doesn't carry the Blago stink. (December 2008)

Survival of the slickest. How about that Blagojevich fella? His problem, of course, is that he has no sense of subtlety. Selling a Senate appointment is just business as usual, but you don't go around bragging about it, you stupid oaf! You use code words.

You say stuff such as: "Of course, we'll have to take a lot of things into consideration, and I'm not ruling out appointing myself to the position." Or: "I want to make sure that the interests of the people of Illinois are best served by this appointment." Or: "We need to have a senator who can work together with the governor to advance the interests of the people of Illinois."

To give people an idea of what you want, you find excuses to talk about what you want to do after you leave office: "It's a little early to think about such things, of course, but I'm hoping I could use my skills to help a non-profit such as (blank)." And so on. Let them figure it out.

But Blagojevich couldn't resist imitating Tony Soprano, and in doing so showed that he really doesn't know how to play the game — all the more so because he knew that the Authorities were already interested in him owing to the fact that his father-in-law, a Chicago ward-heeler, had already accused him of similar shenanigans. That put him squarely in the sights when it came time to thin the herd. [David T. Wright] (December 2008)

Copernicus and the bailouts. Nicholas Copernicus (1473-1543) is best known for providing the first scientifically based theory of the heliocentric structure of the solar system. But he was a true polymath, with interests that went far beyond astronomy, and significant accomplishments in mathematics, medicine, canon law, and economics.

The debasement of coins was a major problem in Copernicus's day. Government authorities debased their coinage — not even kings could get away with fiat paper money in the 16th century — in the belief that it would increase their wealth. Copernicus recognized the problems that this approach was causing. He advised both the Prussian Diet and the Polish king to maintain sound money, and at the behest of the latter wrote a tract on the subject. His key assertion was: "Money loses its value when it becomes too abundant." In short, Copernicus understood the cause and perils of inflation. He saw the debasement of coinage as one of the four disasters that could befall a country, the other three being discord, high mortality, and poor harvests.

While Copernicus was able to bring about a revolution in thinking about the cosmos, a comparable Copernican revolution in economics has yet to be achieved. The current trillion-dollar bailouts show that the old "geocentric" theory still prevails among Establishment economists. [Stephen J. Sniegoski] (December 2008)

Happy days are here again! "This is a sad day for government," U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald declared on December 9 in his news conference after the arrest of Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich. Yes, indeed, and that made it a happy day for us. Whenever some cesspol goes down and it makes big headlines, we anti-statists have a fine teaching opportunity.

Assuming that the National Secret Police really have the goods on him (always a good question), Blagojevich has managed to outdo most of his fellow sewer rats — Illinois sewer rats, which makes this an unusually pungent chunk of cheese. (His predecessor is still in prison.) It was smelly enough when he threatened to block a state subsidy for the financially sick Tribune Company until it fired some Trib writers who were critical of Blago; and denying approval for a children's-hospital expansion unless the hospital paid him off really pumped up the reek; but the FBI says that the man actually was aiming to sell the U.S. Senate seat vacated by Barack Obama. Any time now, the League of Women Voters goody-two-shoes goofs are sure to start handing out their ancient prescription: We need to start electing good people! And ... and ... pass more anti-corruption laws!

Through how many elections, and how many scandals, in Illinois and elsewhere, have well-meaning naïfs been saying that?

As I've suggested, lank-locks Blago is a champ of corruption. He makes his next-door colleague, Hoosierdom's Mitch Daniels the Technocrat, look like Cato the Elder. But, you know, I'll bet that even old Cato knew his way around bagmen and bribes and back-alley threats, because Roman politics and the Roman state were inherently corrupt. All politics and all states tend toward corruption, in the Actonian sense. And why does power corrupt? By definition, states depend on the initiation of force; and initiating force is a crime.

Along the way here, meditate a bit on the Trib scandal: the Tribune Company was willing to whine for loot robbed from taxpayers, and Blago's state government had the power to do that robbing and hand out that loot to favored clients. That's an inherently corrupt and criminal state of affairs, and it is so regardless of Blago's participation. Forget Blago: it's officially legal!

While we're talking inherent corruption and criminality, you might want to meditate, too, on the much vaster loot-distribution that has occurred and continues to occur in Washington. That, too, is all legal. After all, governments define for themselves what is legal. (That's more apparent nowadays because, unlike the government of the Old Republic, the modern Imperial Government doesn't bother hiding its criminality behind all of that outdated mystical claptrap about the Constitution.)

An inherently criminal and corrupt entity is naturally going to attract criminals and would-be criminals to operate it. Now I see two characteristic types of politicriminals. One is the Blago type, interested in grabbing all the loot he can. The other is the Robespierre type, interested in forcing what Thomas Sowell calls the "Vision of the Anointed" on the hapless people he rules. In terms of murderous psychopathology, the first resembles the Mob hitman, merely looking for a good payday, while the second resembles the serial killer, uninterested in money and looking for, shall we say, more-intrinsic psychic rewards.

From time to time you'll find a pol who manages to inhabit both categories: Hillary Clinton is a good example. Throughout her public life she's always been a genuine Red totalitarian — but allied with Hot Springs Bill she also proved herself a pretty avid boodle-girl. Most of the successful Negro politicians, too, combine socialism (insofar as it seems to favor their race) with corruption as traditionally defined. Charlie Rangel is merely the latest example.

I admit that most pols come off as "moderates" in their criminality compared with Blago, the Clintons, and Rangel. In some cases, that's only because their own scandalous illegality hasn't yet become public. But in all cases, even "honest" pols are hip deep in a legal criminal conspiracy against the people, and all the elections until the end of time can't change that. [Nicholas Strakon]

P.S. Let's hope that some of the Blago stink attaches itself unwashably to the Commissar of Cool himself, who emerged from the same political sewer as the man he helped become governor.

A "betrayal" of the "innocent" voter? Anarchists debate whether voting is inherently a criminal act, but I think we'd all agree that a criminal mentality is revealed any time a voter casts a ballot in order to share some boodle stolen from a peaceful neighbor or in order to see some Vision of the Anointed imposed on that peaceful neighbor. I leave it to the reader to estimate how many of the votes cast in November fall into those categories. [Modine Herbey]  (October 2008)

"Joe the Plumber." You know what I think of the candidate who first met "Joe the Plumber" and what I think of the candidate who then lionized him, but my view of Ohioan S. Joseph Wurzelbacher himself is much more benign. That's especially so since the Red Guards of the Glorious People's News Collective started knocking over desks, chairs, and seven different kinds of recycling bins in their rabid rush to destroy him.

Various technical nigglings about Joe's economic prospects and projected tax rate feature in the media coverage, but a CBS story's headline conveys what the newsies are really focusing on: "Joe The Plumber: Unlicensed, Owes Back Taxes."

CBS puts it this way in its October 17 dispatch: "Joe the Plumber's story sprang a few leaks." One of them is supposed to be the fact that Wurzelbacher "isn't really a licensed plumber." The form of that attack tells us much about a modern American derangement. CBS is clearly implying that since Wurzelbacher isn't licensed, he isn't actually a plumber. The man does plumbing; he works as a plumber; he plumbs, for heaven's sake — but that's irrelevant in light of the fact that some government entity hasn't waved a magic credential and chanted some bureaucratic litany over him. Governmental rituals and paperwork take precedence over the facts of reality.

If you think about it, that nicely parallels government's idea that the fiat currency it conjures out of nothing is real money, whereas gold isn't money at all.

The CBS dispatch deepens the nastiness in characterizing as another "leak" in the "story" the fact that Wurzelbacher "owes nearly $1,200 in back taxes." In other words, some other government entity wants to rob Wurzelbacher of more money than it has already managed to steal from him. The robber barons of Ohio have slapped a lien on him until he ponies up all the loot they want.

In the view of the Red Guard media, that's supposed to make us think less of this hard-pressed but hopeful craftsman. No doubt all fraternal workers and peasants will erupt in spontaneous demonstrations throughout Oceania and denounce the class-traitor Wurzelbacher.

In the meantime, don't forget that it's we partisans of freedom who are the running dogs of greed and elitism, and the enemy of ordinary people. [Nicholas Strakon, unlicensed writer]

Ronn Neff would like to know: What on Earth does any of that unlicensed or back-taxes business have to do with what Joe Wurzelbacher asked or the answer that was given to him? Why is any of it relevant and what is it relevant to?

It shows that the left-wing media — let's change that — it shows that the extremist left-wing media in this country will destroy anyone in order to secure a win for their boy.

Evil or just illiterate? I find myself asking that question all the time these days. And I asked it again on October 20 when a newsreader for the Fort Wayne CBS affiliate, WANE-TV, referred to "the now-infamous Joe the Plumber."

"Infamous"! [Modine Herbey] (October 2008)

Truth and untruth in dirty hands. Fans of the National Forensic League and the House of Commons lament the lack of classic debating between our candidates for emperor, but they may as well save their breath. That kind of debating is the last thing the pols' handlers and spinners want. Our pols don't debate so much as collide on the issues. (Once in office, of course, they often change a vowel and collude.)

Sometimes a little bit of truth or probable truth leaks out from those collisions. I often say that we can believe a politician only when he's smearing his opponent, and I'm not just joking. But, still, on the level of actual ideas there's a frustrating quality to most of the pol-collisions we see.

One reason is that pols usually propose action on the basis of their Polite Totalitarian premises: We'll pass a law! Expand government power! Intervene in that country! No, intervene in that other country! Tax! Subsidize! Prevent! Require! Imprison! Since totalitarianism is the enemy of logic, morality, economy, society, and all else that is true and good, it's easy for the pol's opponent — if he or his handlers enjoy a three-digit IQ — to predict unjust or otherwise negative effects from this or that tax, this or that "program," this or that foreign intervention.

But there's a second, more interesting reason that pol-collisions tend to be unproductive, and it moves in the opposite direction, making for a sort of pincer operation. Pols still sometimes interrupt their outright socialist or fascist preaching to praise freedom, property, "fiscal responsibility," and restraint abroad, ladling out some reassuring libertarian-ish pabulum to voters who remember, however dimly, that at one time those things were supposed to be a part of the Glorious American Story. (The replacement American population will not demand or even understand that kind of stroking, but we're not quite there yet.) The trouble with the libertarian-pabulum approach is that a pol's opponent can immediately show how it contradicts "fairness," "equality," "progress," "our security," the need to "protect the disadvantaged," and so on. It threatens "education," "health care," "the environment," "economic stability," "energy," "jobs," and all those other general categories that are nowadays understood in purely totalitarian terms. (Such an attack, of course, must be preceded by the disclaimer that "of course everyone believes in freedom and all that stuff, but ...")

Moreover, an opponent usually has no trouble in casting doubt on the candidate's good faith, since virtually no one is sincere in praising freedom, property, and so forth. That very thing happened to John McCain when he characterized as socialist his opponent's plan to "redistribute" wealth (i.e., steal even more from taxpayers and pass out a portion of the loot to the politically favored). Well, it certainly is socialist. Obama is a socialist, wearing a tissue-thin messiah mask. But McCain's opponents immediately asked the old fellow a couple of difficult questions. Aren't his proposals for building infrastructure with taxpayer money also "redistributive"? Doesn't that make them socialist, too? How about the Wall Street Bailout? If we're socialists, well, you're a socialist, too! McCain's intellectual integrity and consistency were immediately undermined, at least in the eyes of anyone who still cared about the principle of contradiction.

It comes down to this. Whenever a pol proposes some totalitarian program, consisting as always of unfathomable technicalities, illogicalities, and imponderables, it's easy for his opponent to show its true defects — while going on to claim that his totalitarian program will work better. But whenever a pol pretends to be in favor of true freedom and justice, it's equally easy for his opponent to explode in a demagogic frenzy and show how his foe has departed from the tyrannical proposals and institutions that people really cherish.

Trying to derive enlightenment from pol-collisions is worse than a waste of time. Try too hard, and you may poison your mind. [Nicholas Strakon]

Note. I place those irritating quote marks around "redistribute" because the very idea of redistributing wealth itself harbors a socialist premise. In a free society wealth is not originally "distributed" by some authority. It is created and earned and freely exchanged.

It is only when we understand how profoundly our very language and thought have been shaped by statism that we are able to become realistic about the prospects for liberty. (October 2008)

Bulletin from the Malabar Front! Coalition forces have killed al Qaeda's number two man in Iraq, according to news reports today. That may be worth reporting, but it's not worth crowing about. How many times in the past five years, I wonder, have coalition forces killed al Qaeda's number two man in Iraq? According to CBS News, the latest number two man became number two only in June 2007.

Going back a few years before 2007, I can remember when we were told that coalition forces had destroyed the Taliban.

This isn't World War II, when it would have been genuinely big news if the Allies had succeeded in killing the Wehrmacht's number two man in the West — Erwin Rommel — a week before D-Day. What it is like (as other commentators have observed) is an interminable game of Whack-a-Mole. Just a reminder.

While we're in a reminiscing mood, it's probably a good idea to remember also that it's thanks to Bush and his neocons that al Qaeda is in Iraq. [Henry Gallagher Fields] (October 2008)

"We're all socialists now, comrade," reads the headline on an (anti-socialist) opinion piece by Simon Heffer in The Telegraph, written after the British government decided to re-capitalize major banks. Actually, of course, most people in the West have been socialists for a long time now. Or fascists and fascist dupes, with fascism understood as socialism for the rich and well-connected.

No one with half a brain took Sociopathic Bill seriously when he said that "the era of big government is over," but many had been less cautious, and more credulous, a few years before when Sovietism disintegrated. Even the chatterers of the established media started to sound less pink. They admitted, grudgingly or otherwise, the failure of impoverished slave-holes such as North Korea, Cuba, and Zimbabwe, and suddenly announced that "markets" were the way to go after all. (Those with an ear for language noticed that they never actually talked in terms of "the free market," as real free-marketeers do. Neocons, by the way, prefer the label "democratic capitalism" for their own ideal of welfarist fascism.) Liberal commentators praised Red China's movement from straight socialism to a more fascist system. And mass-media consumers began hearing the name "Hayek" three or four times a year, instead of once every couple of years; and the name "Mises" once every couple of years, instead of never.

As it turned out, none of that represented a real change of mind. It was just a necessary mental dance. Now the three-minute waltz has ended and the System's intelligentsia are back to boogying all night long, down at the People's Glorious and Fraternal House of Progressive Recreation.

Even our pinko eggheads had to stipulate that socialism dominated the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, but no such recognition is necessary when the System's socialists and fascists set off a new business crisis on these shores. Until recently System courtiers liked to advertise the American Way as a "mixed" economy that somehow was always in urgent need of more socialist ingredients in the "mix," but now they've gone from bad to worse, actually characterizing the political-economy they're responsible for as "laissez faire."

Their recurring diagnosis is more than a hundred years old, if you go back to the original "progressive" anti-trust era: Every time their own policies produce a cluster-fumble that can't be covered up, why, "the free market has failed." And the remedy is: their policies, times two. Or three. Or ten. Over the past several decades we've labored under a socialism-fascism that has become ever more concentrated, ever more intrusive, ever more distortive, and ever more deadening; but that matters not. For statism cannot fail in principle. Only freedom can fail in principle. The only thing that "democratic" socialism ever needs is some occasional tinkering.

The useful thing about a pronouncement that "we're all socialists now" (even if it's meant ironically) is that it takes us right down to premises. The intelligentsia are prisoners of their bad premises; and, more important, we are prisoners of their bad premises. Even if voting were moral and instrumental, it couldn't get the statists and their statism off our back. One thing Ayn Rand was right about (and she was right about quite a few) was that we need a full-scale intellectual revolution, all the way down to the level of premises, before we have a hope of firing up the necessary revolution in politics and economics. In fact, if an intellectual revolution succeeded, we wouldn't have to do any more firing up.

Now, as we have pointed out before in The Last Ditch, our civilization has reached the stage where such a revolution is no longer in the cards. But whether it's the least we can do or the most we can do, we have to try to reach the reachable, teach the teachable, and keep it from ever becoming literally true that "we're all socialists now." [Nicholas Strakon] (October 2008)

Arch-neocon William Kristol and Patrick Buchanan, hammer of neocons, turn out to have a hero in common — one who may surprise those who believe that Buchanan is a paladin of freedom and think that his support for protectionism is a fluke.

Kristol on "Fox News Sunday," October 12, 2008: "Alexander Hamilton is the founder of democratic capitalism in America."

Buchanan on "Morning Joe," MSNBC, October 6, 2008: Alexander Hamilton was the "architect of the American economy," and "Hamilton's my hero."

In contradistinction, libertarians have always considered Hamilton — in the words of Roy Childs — "the Stalin of the American Revolution." And that's so even if one believes it is obscene to imply, even within the analogy, that Washington or Jefferson was our Lenin.

On the important matter of Hamiltonianism and the foundation of American fascism, Kristol and Buchanan are virtual comrades in arms.

Buchanan uttered his praise of Hamilton in the context of a panel interview with Tom DiLorenzo, the libertarian economic historian whose latest book, Hamilton's Curse, is nearing publication. Buchanan fiercely attacked DiLorenzo's negative view of Hamilton, while saying that he liked one of DiLorenzo's books on Lincoln. He didn't specify which one, but they all attack Lincoln, and here's the interesting thing. Hamilton's High Federalism led to American Whiggery, and Whiggery led to Lincoln Republicanism. They are all the same ideology, at its various stages of evolution through history, and that ideology has achieved its full flowering as the current American imperial-fascism.

Pat Buchanan, the brave historical revisionist and noninterventionist, really doesn't understand that? Paleos of the Buchananite stripe are never going to be friends worth having until they cure at least this one big blind spot. [Nicholas Strakon] (October 2008)

You and me both, Citizen Neff. I mentioned to Ronn Neff the other day that I'd seen some coverage of an anti-Columbus Day movement at Brown University, and I told him I was surprised that such a reactionary, racist, genocidal observance as Columbus Day still had a place on the calendar of any Ivy League school.

Neff replied: "Strakon, I'm surprised to wake up each day and discover we still don't have a base-10 system of months and weeks. ('Is it Thermidor yet?')" [Nicholas Strakon] (October 2008)

Remember, you're supposed to call it a "rescue," not a "bailout." After all, who could oppose a "rescue"?

It's not a "bailout," anyway, because the government stands to profit from it in the end!

If that is so, I say let's go to complete, undiluted socialism in all areas. Totally abolish all markets. Wouldn't that be the way to really pile up those "profits"? (For the government, that is. Not for us, of course.)

I'm no economist, but if I had one on hand, I'd ask him whether Bastiat's "Broken Window" insights might somehow be relevant here, along with Mises's argument that economic calculation is impossible under socialism — i.e., in the context of forced exchanges, using stolen money, that never would have occurred in a true market. [Modine Herbey]

Black magic, scary mojo. I too feel the urge to ask an economist some questions. In particular I'd like to ask a free-market economist about the "mark-to-market" accounting rule that the SEC imposed on financial institutions in January, which had the effect of shredding much of the dicey paper they were holding. Foes of "mark-to-market" blame it for killing Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers, among other things. Here's a brief account of "mark-to-market" by "BoomerJeff," writing at LibertyWorks: "Bailout Update: SEC Changes Mark-to-Market Rule."

According to "BoomerJeff," the SEC has now ditched or at least softened "mark-to-market." That being so, am I wrong in assuming that some of those mortgage-backed assets will, in fact, start looking pretty good — just in time for them to land in the government's grubby paws? If that's so, then the government may actually be able to claim a profit — thanks to a series of machinations that will make the incantations and rituals of a voodoo priest look as simple as an EXIT sign.

What a scam! How could Strakon's Dark Suits have let this be done to them? [Henry Gallagher Fields]

Editor's note.  "BoomerJeff" was wrong about the repeal of "mark-to-market," according to financial news reports and commentary. The rule was still in place, and still much lamented, as of early February 2009.

It all depends, Hank, on whether those valuations rise before or after that grubby-paw-landing occurs. Note that the relief from "mark-to-market" was announced before the actual Bailout took place (assuming it is going to take place). The Dark Suits may yet make out. They usually do. (I realize that this does not address the fatalities that have already occurred among my gentlemen of somber garb.) [Nicholas Strakon] (October 2008)

Bad weather and steep roads. One of my co-conspirators here at TLD recently took a road trip to the mountains of North Carolina, and he got caught up in the gasoline shortage that, week after week, continues to afflict parts of the American South. He's back home now, with an amusing explanation for the shortage that he picked up while in Asheville.

For their part, the established media have been blaming hurricanes, refinery bottlenecks, and the like; but they haven't been amusing me as much as driving me crazy. Such factors might explain why the price of gasoline in affected areas would rise, in a free market; that is, they might explain changes in relative scarcity. But they could not explain an actual shortage. They could not explain why the market failed to retain equilibrium between supply and demand, at whatever price was necessary to clear the market.

A sharp rise in that price, by the way, would be the best way to ensure that gasoline suppliers exerted all efforts to frantically shove increased supplies into the affected area — eventually allowing the market to clear at a lower price. It would be the best way because it is the market way — the social way — freedom's way.

My vacationing friend heard the usual chatter about bad weather, but here's the funny bit. Word on the street in Asheville, it seems, is that gasoline trucks are having difficulty making it up the region's mountain roads. Apparently the roads have suddenly gotten steeper, just as "greed" suddenly worsened on Wall Street some time ago, as financiers abruptly switched from their traditionally altruistic personae, quite lacking in the acquisitive impulse.

Well, that's the state of economics education in this country, for which we can thank the schools and the mainstream media, among other culprits.

At lunch on Sunday, I asked my economics-professor sister whether she didn't think that the gas shortage in the South had resulted largely from state-level anti-gouging laws and regulations. She thought it was a dead cert. But I shouldn't have had to ask a professor. Anyone with a little understanding of economics should have been able to tell me that when we see not just a change in relative scarcity but an actual shortage, government has once again rushed in to help us with our problems.

You won't hear that from the MSM, but it took me only a minute's Googling to find an intelligent article, at, that lo and behold deals specifically with the Tarheel state: "N.C. price-gouging law promotes gas lines, shortages / Government interference hurts state's consumers." What do you want to bet that similar interference — sorry, helping — has caused the shortages in Tennessee, Georgia, and the other affected states? [Nicholas Strakon] (October 2008)

A little street theater. I am compelled to share some comedy recently recounted to me by a longtime racialist friend. He was walking down the street in a liberal white neighborhood when he encountered a group of older white women wearing Obama T-shirts and fluttering around a card table festooned with Obama posters that they had set up on the sidewalk.

As he approached, he broke into a broad smile. "I'm so glad that Obama is running," he gushed. "I'm so glad that an African American is finally going to be our president!"

The biddies beamed at him and offered applications to register to vote.

"I'm already registered," he assured them, "and I can't wait to vote for Barack Obama. I've been waiting for this all my life. This has been my dream."

As their expressions approached ecstasy, he moved in for the kill:

"I know you all remember back when we finally got rid of that awful Ian Smith and put the white people in Rhodesia in their place, and made Robert Mugabe president of Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe has made so much progress under Mugabe! I do so hope that Barack Obama turns out to be America's Robert Mugabe!"

Their smiles disappeared instantly, to be replaced with expressions of utter hatred — not, of course, directed toward Mugabe.

My friend smiled broadly at them all and then walked away. I am so jealous! I wish I had thought of this myself! [Douglas Olson] (October 1, 2008)

I'm running out of popcorn! Yesterday I almost posted some comment on the failure of the bailout bill, but it got out of control and I didn't finish it. I'm glad.

I figured that whatever I wrote stood an excellent chance of being overtaken by events within a few days, but it took only two days for what happened in the House on Monday to be revealed as little more than theater.

1) Speaker Pelosi brought a big important measure to the floor "without knowing" whether she had the votes to pass it. "Foolish incompetence!" cried the established-media commentators. "Try to imagine Sam Rayburn doing such a thing! Or Tip O'Neill!"

2) Before the vote, Pelosi and Rep. Barney Frank (chairman of the Finance Committee) made partisan, anti-Republican speeches on the floor. Why, that wasn't the way to Bring Us Together! "Foolish incompetence and uncontrollable Red Guardism!" cried I myself, rashly, in e-mail messages to some co-conspirators.

3) Pelosi stayed out of the chair after the clock expired — ostensibly working the floor to get a few members to change their vote — and a few minutes later Frank demanded, "Regular order!," which prompted the chairwoman to smack the final gavel on the bill, certifying its defeat. It was nice for Pelosi — nicely convenient — that she didn't have to do that smacking herself. And all the cognoscenti cried out that Frank had made a freshman parliamentary mistake: "What was he thinking?"

4) On Tuesday, the Republican hard men protested that what Pelosi and Frank said had had no effect on their voting. They voted on principle! And media commentators — turning on a dime — pooh-poohed the effect of the speeches, too: All the refuseniks knew how they were going to vote long before Comrades P. and F. opened their traps.

5) After the vote, despite the Grave National Emergency, the House stuck with its plan to adjourn for the Jewish holidays. That puzzled Joe Scarborough, the Republican ex-congressman who hosts MSNBC's "Morning Joe." He pointed out that while he was in the House, "we worked through Good Friday" when urgent and important business was pending. Well, I'm not too sure whether any Christian holy day holds a candle to Rosh Hashanah in the eyes of the System, but it was peculiar to see congressional Jews close down the House and — so it seemed — leave in the lurch all those Jewish financiers up in New York. Even Comedy Central's Jon Stewart — himself a Jew — thought it was weird, pointing out that there are many more Jews on Wall Street, proportionately, than in Congress.

Though I fell, momentarily, for some of the other playacting, I smelled something false in this one. It seemed to contradict so much of what Kevin MacDonald has written.

6) We hear now that when the House comes back into session, it's going to pass a bill reinforced with "sweeteners." The Senate is expected to pass a "sweetened" version this very evening (Wednesday, October 1).

We are witnessing real tension in the ruling class and in the political class that has been designed to serve it, but it's not the sort of rivalrous tension that we saw in the Yankee and Cowboy War forty years ago or that we currently see between the "moderate" Dark Suits and the Bush Likudniks. Rather it is the tension of alarm and danger.

In pursuing their own specialized financial interests within the nightmare web of regulations, distortions, and privileges they themselves are ultimately responsible for — given their dominant influence over general policy formation — the Dark Suits have in effect blinded and crippled themselves in the process of blinding and crippling the rest of the country. I keep saying that the Suits just haven't been the same since 9/11. George W. Bonzo has made me miss good old Bill Clinton, and now I miss the good old Suits, too. You never know what you've got 'til it's gone.

Well, I go too far. But, really, the ruling class has so badly fumbled and bumbled its own special business that it is very difficult, now, for its hirelings in Washington to save it from itself while at the same time retaining their own offices. Hollowed-out though it may be, and always inherently fraudulent, Duh-MOCK-risy still formally exists in the United State. It's not too important for the Dark Suits if pols are turned out of office, though a mass kill would involve considerable training costs for the replacements. But keeping their current job is very important for the pols themselves, and they're dancing and prancing across hot coals right now in a frantic effort to make it through November 4.

Excuse me: I'm heading to the lobby for another tub. With extra butter. [Nicholas Strakon]

P.S. He and I might disagree on various plot points, but one man I'd really like to be watching this movie with is Walter Karp.

The established-media commentators I heard on the telescreen Monday, including the financial commentators, were all aghast at the initial failure of the bailout. One thing in particular they all agreed on was that the last thing we wanted to see was any standing on principle by House members who oppose socialism. (For purposes of argument only, I'm stipulating that some other members do join Dr. Ron Paul in opposing socialism on principle.) In other words, principles and political philosophy are diverting topics to chat about while we sip scotch in the evenings, but it's senseless to pay attention to such fripperies during a Grave National Emergency.

It reminded me of leviathan's standard line about how we mustn't pay any attention to civil liberties during the Emergencies leviathan reliably creates. (Abraham Lincoln, Our Greatest Tribune of Freedom, seems to have pioneered that dodge.) In fact, adherence to civil liberties and libertarian principle in general are never more important than during leviathan's serial Emergencies. Our ambitious rulers know that all too well, but their bodyguard of liars work overtime to keep it secret from the sheeple. [NS] (October 1, 2008)

Once again, it's all the fault of "laissez faire"!

Obama "senior advisor" Stephanie Otter, on "Morning Joe," MSNBC, September 15: "If there's anybody to blame for [the Wall Street cluster of error], it's the laissez-faire economics of the last eight years."

John McCain on "Morning Joe," September 16: Wall Street has "broken the social contract between capitalism and the average citizen and the worker." If the reference to a "social contract" isn't smelly enough, another thing to wrinkle your nose at, here, is McCain's belief that ordinary people do not themselves participate in "capitalism," i.e., the market. In fact, even in our totalitarian time, when it comes to keeping body and soul together the overwhelming majority of Americans spend 90 percent of their time participating in the market. (I believe Sheldon Richman once made that point to good effect.) McCain went on to propose more and better regulation.

Mitt Romney on "Morning Joe," September 17: "No one believes in no regulation" of Wall Street. Well, except for those evil laissez-fairists who were in charge until the last week or so! Romney, of course, is the "business expert" among the Republicans. What I take from what he said is that we, and the folks at Mises and Future of Freedom and FEE, and Robert Higgs, and all the other free-market people are — "no one." From the standpoint of the System, I guess that's about right. [Nicholas Strakon]

Dark Suits ripped. It's a commonplace, at least hereabouts, that the more the Central Government fails, the more powerful it gets. On the basis of recent events, we can confidently extend that rule to cover the ruling class standing outside the official regime. The more the Dark Suits fail at their own specialized financial business, the more powerful they become.

To be sure, as specialized entities operating in the market, they have suffered damage, and their weaknesses have been revealed anew. But entities that are weak with respect to the entire political-economic System are not able to induce the Central Government to commit ever greater, ever worse crimes on their behalf. The particular men who are the Dark Suits may be clowns or madmen — they may have hoist themselves on a petard they had ignited to destroy others — but the Dark Suits as a class, as a force, are indeed "too big to fail." And their employees in Washington will not permit them to fail.

I need to write about these matters at greater length, once things gel a bit. [NS]

At least since the adoption of the Constitution, America has always had a ruling class standing outside the regime, or at least straddling the divide between officialdom and formally private entities. In the late 18th and early 19th centuries it based itself on government land grants. Those remained important for a time, especially with respect to the railroads as they developed, but protective tariffs and other interventions soon established additional bases for extra-regime rulers; and it became somewhat unusual for actual officials of the regime also to be senior members of the ruling class.

Now it is possible to propose that the American system — at the highest levels of finance — is taking giant steps from its traditional fascism toward straight socialism. It will be interesting to see how long the true ruling class can remain even formally separable from the official regime. The structure may be changing at a level more fundamental than Strakon has deemed possible. At least it's a possibility worth entertaining. [Henry Gallagher Fields]

Irony, typically delicious. Whatever is happening, it's big and bad. How wonderful that it's happening during the presidency of a Republican who at one time was touted as a conservative! [Modine Herbey] (September 22, 2008)

"Lipstick on a pig," indeed! I find that to be a dazzlingly apposite way to describe the moronic fraud of American electoral politics. (I think the Sage of Baltimore wrote a little on this subject.)

For benefit of readers bold and vigilant enough to avoid all news coverage, I must report that on September 8, Barack Obama used the phrase "you can put lipstick on a pig" in the course of criticizing John McCain's positions, and the McCain campaign responded by claiming that Obama was denigrating McCain's running mate, Sarah Palin, as somehow porcine. Palin, you see, had identified herself as a lipstick-wearer in her acceptance speech at the convention.

Palin's speech occurred recently enough that it did not fall under McCain's interdict on discussing "history," for which he has explicitly expressed contempt. McCain himself used the phrase "lipstick on a pig" last October in slamming Hillary Clinton's proposals, but that, of course, does qualify as "history," so it is irrelevant according to the McCain philosophy.

Now, I've been known to grumble about my beloved fellow Americans' devolving into "sheeple" who just beg to be gulled by the worst sociopaths in the country, and honestly I am afraid that we are heading toward an age of idiotocracy when we'll either have to accept some major Asian intervention to swab out our collective throat or risk drowning in our own spit. You can't destroy a country's culture, including its family culture, and its educational industry without putting a major dent in people's ability to think and to run their own private lives. And you can't erect a leviathan both vast and microscopically intrusive without rendering a people heedless, unable to plan, and present-bound. Infantile, in short.

But a radical divide still exists between the habits of mind that people exercise when they walk into the voting booth and those that they exercise when they walk onto a used-car lot. The media are properly pointing out the transparent untruth of the McCain attack, but they take it for granted that some voters will swallow it. I take it for granted that they're right.

If most voters brought at least average intelligence and average self-respect to bear on campaigns and elections, the "pig" lie alone would destroy McCain. The Republicans have exhibited a contempt for ordinary Americans that has managed, at least temporarily, to exceed that of the Democrats when they disseminate their goofy socialist propaganda denying the laws of justice, cause and effect, and simple arithmetic.

But voters do not employ normal cognition when meditating and acting on electoral politics. They have no incentive to do so, and really they can't do so, since voting is silly, incoherent, and inutile. (It's also immoral for a free man, but that's a subject for another day.) A "responsible" voter has to try figuring out 1) whether a pol is telling the truth about his intentions and 2) whether the pol will be able to do what he promises if (mirabile dictu) he is truthful. And all in a context where one is more likely to influence the weather by dancing nude in his front yard than he is to influence an election by voting.

Attaching oneself to the cause of some pol — who, let's face it, is just a character on TV for 99 percent of voters — is a species of what I like to call "statish thinking." Try using a similar kind of cognition when doing business at Friendly Sam's Pre-owned Auto Paradise. You'll wind up helping Friendly Sam — with $10,000 of your money straining his pocket — push your newly purchased junker off the lot. [Nicholas Strakon]

Speaking of what should destroy a candidate, anywhere but here in Bizarro World, a couple of Sarah Palin's statements certainly fit the bill, as uttered during her September 11 interview with ABC's Charles Gibson.

A partisan of NATO expansion — one of the nuttiest, riskiest, and most counterintuitive ideas our rulers have dreamed up since the disintegration of the U.S.S.R. — Palin admitted with little apparent reluctance that if (Caucasian) Georgia were a member of NATO and were attacked by Russia, America "perhaps" would have to go to war with Russia. And she said that "we [sic] are friends of Israel, and I don't think that we should second-guess the measures that Israel has to take to defend themselves, and for their security." That had to do with the possibility of an Israeli attack on Iranian nuclear facilities. Well, no responsible, patriotic American would want to second-guess any such attack — yes? — despite its nightmarish implications for the U.S. Empire's current adventure in Mesopotamia. (Transcript.)

So now we know, and what a relief! If McCain and Palin are elected, we'll have yet another team of objective, impartial, honest brokers in place to sort out quarrels in the Muslim world and in Russia's "near abroad," all in the genuine interests of the American people.

Seriously, the thing is this. Unlike the "pig" lie, which is a little bold even for American campaigns, Palin's support for crazed foreign adventurism puts her right smack in the American political mainstream. Support for such outlandish policies won't destroy her or any other candidate licensed by the System, even though the policies themselves may wind up destroying us.

You know you're living in Bizarro World when mainstreamers are the extremists, and extremists are the ones urging caution, restraint, and ordinary good sense. [Henry Gallagher Fields]

You want sexism? I'll give you sexism. Veep candidate Sarah Palin should drop off the ticket, resign her job as governor of Alaska, return to her troubled family, and focus on her most important work — being the mother of her children.

I include among her family troubles the deployment of her son "Track," an Army PFC, to Body-Bag Land. Astonishingly — and disgustingly — Palin seems happy and proud to see him go.

Let's see. If he gets himself KIA before Election Day, will that help or hinder Palin's chances of becoming vice president? No doubt that talking-point has been staffed, just in case, and the handlers have been incentivized to effort for a favorablizing spin in the target demographics.

More noteworthy than Palin's defaulting on her responsibilities as a mother is conservatives' resorting to the "sexism" charge in response to Democrat criticism of Palin. Young Christians make a similar spectacle of themselves when they have themselves tattooed with portraits of Jesus and listen to "Christian" heavy metal. The medium is the message. People have lost all sense of proper idiom, and, along the way, all sense of how degraded they've become.

It's disconcerting enough to hear modern conservatives add Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman, and John Kennedy to their list of political heroes (alongside Ape Lincoln), but over the past two or three decades conservatives have actually started stealing the lingo of the Red Guards. In the present campaign they're using it gleefully as they angle for political advantage. And many, I'm sure, are sincere as well as gleeful as they level the dread charge of "sexism": that is, they have absorbed the Red Guards' lesson that there are no inherent differences between men and women — except, of course, that women are superior in all respects to men.

For the hundredth time, I invite those who consider themselves to be part of the Right to meditate on exactly what it is that conservatives are seeking to conserve. [NS] (September 2008)

It's serious business, but you've still got to laugh. According to the September issue of American Renaissance, the special tendency of black and brown folks to commit crimes extends even to ... wait for it ... "hate crimes"! At least that's the case in Los Angeles County.

Citing a report by the L.A. County Human Relations Commission covering 2007, AR reveals that "on a per capita basis, Hispanics were about 20 percent more likely to commit a racial hate crime than whites, and blacks were more than twice as likely." AR notes that "Hispanic-on-black was the largest 'hate' category, followed by black-on-Hispanic."

That's not all. Two separate anti-white activists in California (both Jews, it seems) blame the colored "hate crimes" at least partly on ... wait for it ... racist whites! However risible that is, for some reason I don't feel like laughing any longer. ("Still Blaming Whitey," p. 16) [Nicholas Strakon] (August 2008)

The politics of ADD. As soon as Obama picked Joe Biden as his running mate, the McCain campaign started running an ad that quoted Biden saying negative things about Obama, back when Biden was a presidential hopeful.

And that's great. Biden's job, now, is to depict Obama as the greatest statesgod to come down the pike since, I don't know, Franklin Roosevelt or Lyndon B. Satan or some similar goblin; and the McCain ad helps illuminate the systematic deceit, if not sociopathy, that is inherent in politics. If we were supposed to believe what Biden said about Obama then, why should we believe what he will be saying now? And vice versa.

But less than 24 hours after the first ad appeared, the McCain campaign started running another ad that quoted Hillary Clinton saying negative things about Obama, back when Mrs. Clinton was a presidential hopeful. And that, according to the ad, is why Obama didn't pick her as his running mate.

Maybe so, but then what about Biden?

Such open, vaunting contempt for simple logic should render any serious man — any man still operating a live brain — ashamed at having anything to do with these pols and their giant, unending, unholy criminal enterprise. They don't just enslave and ruin us. They insult our intelligence while doing so. [Nicholas Strakon] (August 2008)

Luckier than they knew. The lonely partisans of freedom in 1945 had a hard enough time staving off apoplexy as it was, but just think what they'd have had to put up with from the Left and the New York media if Joe Stalin had been diagnosed with brain cancer. [Nicholas Strakon] (August 2008)

The "surge" at Belleau Wood. The War Party, with Bombs Away McCain in the forefront, has been trying to embarrass the anti-war movement by claiming that the Bush regime's "surge" of a modest number of reinforcements into Iraq has been a brilliant success in their terms. Obama and the Obamites — who are not anti-imperialists but sometimes try to play them on TV — respond with wonk talk about the "Sunni awakening" and other alternate explanations for the current Happy Days in Mesopotamia. Whatever the truth of that technical back-and-forth may be, I find all of it to be both misleading and irrelevant. Genuine enemies of imperialism and imperialist war need to keep their eye on the ball.

In June 1918, the U.S. Marines led the Wilson regime's "surge" into ground combat on the Western Front by launching the battles of Chateau Thierry and Belleau Wood. The whole grim and protracted struggle found a prominent place in the Marine mythos, and the institutional memory of the U.S. military in general, as an epic of courage, loyalty, and heroism rivaling even that of Bombs Away when he got himself apprehended and imprisoned for the war crimes he committed in Vietnam.

Officialdom and the veterans' lobby may have exaggerated the importance of the Marines' eventual success, but it does seem to have spoiled the last major offensive that the Germans would be able to mount in France. Now, if the brave Marines' victory played a significant part in the Allies' eventual strategic victory, what did that victory lead to?

Well, Lenin, Stalin, and Hitler, to name three. And just maybe the Great Depression, too, though other factors were certainly important there.

The United State's very entry into the war was a tremendous crime, and Americans were the first to suffer its depredations. Those who need to be refreshed on the Wilsonian domestic tyranny must consult Thomas Fleming's gripping tale of true-life horror, The Illusion of Victory: America in World War I. On any list of the worst presidents to whom the evil dullard George W. Bush may be compared, ranking near the top must be the evil pedant Woodrow Wilson.

I throw out those observations just to suggest that, in discussing tactical or strategic successes, we ought not lose sight of the nature of our rulers' wars. We must understand what success means for those fighting a criminal, aggressive war: it means success in committing crime, and, if history teaches us anything, in clearing the ground for future crime. No amount of ingenious generalship and derring-do on the part of Our Boys (and Wymyn) can change that. [Nicholas Strakon] (August 2008)

Obama abroad. Like Strakon, I'm still rooting halfheartedly — quarter-heartedly — for Race Commissar Obama over Field Marshal McCain, but I hope that the Young Imam's traveling thousands of miles to deliver his treacly sermons to foreigners just destroys him so far as self-respecting Red Staters are concerned. Much as I hate to say anything favorable about Bombs Away, I thought it was a nice touch for McCain to appear at a German restaurant in Ohio at the same time Obama appeared in Berlin. And more than that: it was a hundred times more of an American thing to do than what Obama did. But as Strakon has pointed out, Obama is a virtual foreigner.

Sad to say, that foreignness is probably appropriate given the office he's seeking, namely, that of Emperor of the World Except for Russia, China, and a Few Other Unenlightened Places. It's bad enough — and badly significant — to see incumbent U.S. presidents giving speeches abroad, but to see a presidential candidate doing it just nails down the fact that the United State is an empire. Not that any further proof is needed; for at least sixty years now it's been pretty easy to figure out. I would say a hundred and forty years, but I don't want to come off as some kind of radical.

It's still a bit odd: the preaching to foreigners who can't vote for Obama. Legally, it is still the case that actual U.S. citizens must elect a president, even if creative authorities in some localities stretch that rule. Apparently Obama and his gang are hoping that the foreign glory won by their hero will reflect back to his benefit at home, impressing United Statians who are capable of being impressed by that sort of thing. As I suggest above, I'm hoping they've miscalculated badly with respect to Middle Americans. But Middle Americans continue to disappoint on many fronts — as they send their sons and their daughters to fight in Bush's War — and I'm afraid that many six-packers in non-Commie flyover territory will now conclude that Obama would be an emperor strong and wise: just what's needed to Keep Us Safe and Defend Our Freedom in Strange Places.

Alternatively, if the Obamites have miscalculated, then the ruling class will just have to accelerate its forty-year campaign to — as Bertolt Brecht put it in a parallel context — dissolve the old people and elect a new one. [Henry Gallagher Fields]

Comment. I think Mr. Fields is on to something when he writes of Obama's overseas appearances reflecting back on his political fortunes at home. Whether or not those appearances directly impress American voters, they satisfy the transnational ruling class, which owns and operates the apparatus for impressing, manipulating, deceiving, and otherwise motivating the voters. Obama's jumping through hoops in foreign countries helps make him Palace-worthy in the eyes of his, and our, true masters. Naturally he would not have achieved his status as nominee-designate had they not already recognized that he was malleable — but he must still perform his public obeisance. A capo who has faithfully served the Godfather for decades must still be seen to bow and kiss his hand.

In minimizing the importance of the voters as independent actors, I'm thinking of what James Burnham wrote in one of the formulations of his that I love to quote: "The existence in [democratic] society of the suffrage machinery naturally tends to favor those individuals who are adept at using the machinery; just as, in a society where rule is founded directly on force, the ablest fighting men are favored against the rest." (The Machiavellians, 1943)

The title character in the movie "Charlie Wilson's War," played by Tom Hanks, puts it less formally when he tells a friend that "I'm not elected by voters; I'm elected by contributors." In a lapse into realism (if not crimethink) that is astonishing for Hollywood, the Wilson character goes on to make it clear that his biggest contributors are Jews, even though almost no Jews live in his district. He explains: "I'm one of Israel's men on the Hill."

In terms of that specific context, Obama's appearance before AIPAC and his visit to Israel were surely more important, for purposes of bowing and hand-kissing, than any of his visits to European countries. [Nicholas Strakon] (July 2008)

Distracting Mr. Wright. Here in Trantor driving to work is often an ordeal of traffic jams, long stoplights, and other hazards such as gigantic SUVs piloted by morons simultaneously reading e-mails on their Blackberries — all of it made worse by the restrictions forced on us by the traffic-control Ms. Grundys. Then, once you make it to work, there's the problem of finding and paying for a place to park.

However, for some people, there's an alternative. We have a number of paved bicycle trails, most of them on U.S. Park Service land. I sometimes ride on them to work. Most have little yellow dashed lines in the middle, just like a real road, even though the trails are only about 5 feet wide. They also, and I am not making this up, have "STOP" and "YIELD" signs at intersections with other trails, making them resemble the little roads in Legoland, or somewhere.

At intersections with roads, the trails feature not only stop signs but also notices ordering the cyclist to "Dismount and Walk Bike." That makes a lot of sense, because it's much easier to get out of the way of speeding cars if you're hobbling across an intersection on your bike cleats.

Of course, the bicyclists contemptuously ignore those ridiculous intrusions and do what they think best. That's despite the fact that a large proportion of them are insufferably "Green," believe they're saving the planet by biking to work, and support all kinds of state intrusion for the good of all.

But now even this partial refuge from the traffic prudes is under attack: on one of the trails, the Authorities are installing speed-limit signs. For bicycles! From now on bikers on the Capital Crescent trail are restricted to 15 miles per hour, which isn't much more than my 80-year-old mother can grind out on her three-wheeler. And they're enforcing the limit with radar and $50 fines. I really am not making this up.

The next step? How about speed limits on sidewalks? Stop signs in the corridors of buildings? And perhaps they should fine the owners of Frisbee-playing dogs that run too fast in public parks. The possibilities for creative do-goodism are endless! [David T. Wright] (July 2008)

"Be glad  'bout the jihad!" A lot of people are doing it — including ultra-respectable, racially terrified whites in the MSM. On July 18 it was Dan Rather's turn, during a guest appearance on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" show. Commenting on the Reverend Doctor Doggerel's latest case of foot-in-mouth disease, Rather sent his own oxford wingtip mouthward by stipulating that "Jesse Jackson was an important figure in paving the way for an Osama bin Laden to appear."

However mortified, the panel members let the remark pass without correction — namely, Zbig's daughter Mika, columnist Mike Barnicle, and the Negro "Tiki" Barber, who apparently is some sort of retired sports figure.

Barack Obama may actually win in November, but, still, this is just the sort of thing the Democrats should have expected when they chose a virtual foreigner as their candidate. [Nicholas Strakon]

During the same installment of "Morning Joe," Mr. Barber supported the position of Miss "Whoopi" "Goldberg" — as delineated on the televised hen-party "The View" — that while it is a dreadful thing for most whites to use the word nigger, it is a fine thing for Negroes to use it. Showing remarkable liberality, Mr. Barber allowed that some white athletes, insofar as they are on terms of locker-room familiarity with their Negro brethren, may properly use the word in certain contexts.

It is useful for us whites to receive such instruction, from time to time, on Negro policy, but I should have been even more grateful had Mr. Barber gone on to explain when, if ever, it is appropriate for Orientals or Hispanics to employ the traditional language. One suspects that the question is especially pressing with respect to our friends from south of the border. [NS] (July 2008)

The road to fairdom. One of the media's feminist operatives recently asked old Bombs Away whether he thought it was "fair" that health-insurance companies paid for Viagra but not for birth-control drugs. Having no analytical ability or attachment to principle, McCain could only try spinning a non-answer answer that would do the least damage to his campaign for emperor, and he failed. The MSM did their best to raise the resulting wave of embarrassment to tsunami levels.

For benefit of those emerging from time capsules, I explain that the feminists, and cultural Bolsheviks generally, consider pregnancy to be a disease — among white women, at least.

Now, from a purely analytical standpoint it is hard to explain why insurance companies do what they do, given the prevailing health-care fascism. But given a free market, if some malcontent asked a principled free-marketeer the "fairness" question the latter might well answer:

That is an incoherent question, unless by "fairness" you mean "a result that I, personally, happen to like." Is it "fair" that a certain road owner rents space along his right-of-way for giant billboards? Is it "fair" that McBurger doesn't limit its menu to broccoli and oat bran? Is it "fair" that recording labels sell more popular music than unpopular music?

You are free to tell the untold millions of people acting on their ever-changing personal preferences in society that you find the result of their decisions to be "unfair" or otherwise unpleasant. You are free to try to persuade them to your way of thinking. But perhaps I should remind you: You are not free to forcibly replace their preferences with your own.

Apparently, demand in the competitive marketplace has induced the health-insurance companies to cover erectile dysfunction as a disease and has discouraged them from covering pregnancy as a disease. "Fairness," as a general and fatally foggy principle, doesn't come into it.

We started to hear a lot about "fairness," as a public issue, only when our enemy, the state, started to explode in size, power, and reach, wrapping its tentacles around every little aspect of our lives. Infantile pouting about "fairness" emerges from the bruising playground of leviathan. We don't need "fairness." We need justice. [Nicholas Strakon] (July 2008)

Why they're winning and we're losing. The Sexual Minority Youth Assistance League (SMYAL) is a nonprofit organization that serves "gay" youth in the Washington, D.C., area by reinforcing their feelings of homosexuality, promoting their alienation from normal society, and encouraging them to participate in "safe" sex.

In recent months, according to an article in the homosexualist Washington Blade, the group has lost five of its top officials, either through resignation or dismissal. SMYAL also lost about $70,000 in grant funds from the State of Maryland AIDS Administration, money that was supposed to be used for HIV-prevention services in the state's public schools — because the work was not being done. Other lost funding includes a $25,000 grant from the D.C. Children's and Youth Investment Trust Corp., $20,000 from Sasha Bruce Youthwork, and $15,000 from something called "Break the Cycle."

A significant setback for the homosexualist forces? Well, stop and think about the larger context. In all, SMYAL has been operating its propaganda and support services on about $1 million a year, and the reductions represent a loss of only 13 percent of its total budget.

One metro area. One organization promoting homosexuality. One million dollars a year.

Wouldn't it be awfully nice to know that somewhere in the world — or everywhere in the world combined — dedicated people had resources of $1 million a year to champion the cause of white rights and the very survival of the white race? [Douglas Olson] (July 2008)

One side only, as usual. Over the past few days MSNBC has reported that Iran's missiles can reach Israel, Turkey, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and the Arabian Peninsula. Naturally the missiles can hit targets next door in Iraq as well, including the tempting bull's-eyes that the U.S. Empire has thoughtfully pasted onto the map of that satrapy in the form of big bases.

In the coverage I've seen, the threat to Israel has garnered the most attention.

Given Iran's recent test-launches, I understand why their weapons are the focus of the current missile stories; but I'd expect a free, independent, unterrified news medium to include some background information on what countries Israel can hit with its missiles.

Since free, independent, unterrified news media are thin on the ground here in the Utopia of Democracy, I offer these links, at the risk of promoting crimethink:

"Israel's Nuclear Missile Threat against Iran," by Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya at Global Research

"Israel: How Far Can Its Missiles Fly?," The Risk Report, Wisconsin Project on Nuclear Arms Control, June 1995

[Nicholas Strakon] (July 2008)

Succinct wisdom about "white privilege." In the Fall 2007 issue of The Occidental Quarterly, reviewer David Wilson carries out an appropriately concise demolition of Heart of Whiteness: Confronting Race, Racism, and White Privilege by Robert Jensen, an anti-white white. Addressing "that weakest item in the anti-white left's concept bin, 'white privilege' or 'institutionalized racism,'" Wilson writes:

That a white person might receive better reception in a predominantly white society is as natural a proposition as to say that a penguin will thrive in icy waters or a palm tree in a tropical climate. To accept it as morally deficient requires a belief that the group existence of whites itself is morally deficient or in need of obliteration. (p. 124)
Wilson's observation, while true, will of course remain relevant only until the time, which is approaching, when "a predominantly white society" no longer exists. [Nicholas Strakon] (June 2008)

The truth at last. President-for-Life Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe has acknowledged that he will not respect the result of the June 27 run-off presidential election if he loses. "We fought for this country, and a lot of blood was shed," Mugabe declared recently in a state-controlled newspaper. "We are not going to give up our country because of a mere X. How can a ballpoint [pen] fight with a gun?"

Many of us knew thirty years ago that Mugabe was fighting not for "freedom" but for personal power and plunder. This latest news will be totally ignored by those who called us "haters" for perceiving the truth while they were willfully deceiving themselves. [Douglas Olson] (June 2008)

Don't you wish we had an energy policy? As the fuel crisis deepens, many commentators — typically but not exclusively left-wing — have started crying for the Central Government to adopt and impose an "energy policy." They maintain that "we" have not had an "energy policy" for many years.

I am reminded of the Left's repeated insistence that the current system of crushing, totalitarian socialism/fascism amounts to "laissez-faire capitalism."

No energy policy, eh? The long-running ban on offshore drilling doesn't qualify as such a policy, it appears. Nor do the thousand other interventions by Red Guards — tolerated by anti-competitive Dark Suits — that have sabotaged petroleum exploration, extraction, and refining. Also not qualifying are the Guards' suppressing the nuclear-power industry and the fascists' distorting that same industry through regulation, monopoly privilege, and risk-subsidy.

Likewise, the existence of a Strategic Petroleum Reserve doesn't qualify, or oil leases on land the government purports to own, or the inequitable awarding of special tax privileges to Big Oil, or the entire combustible mixture of regulation and subsidy extended to the industry decade after decade. (I am all in favor of tax exemptions, but they do amount to special privilege when they are restricted to certain sectors and not offered to all tax-victims.) The catastrophic subsidizing of ethanol doesn't seem to qualify as an energy policy, either. I could go on, but I will relent.

What true, sincere leftists mean by an "energy policy" is a gleaming, triple-riveted, unitary, utterly totalitarian system designed and run by them. The existing plethora of state interventions — chaotic, corrupt, and contradictory — has been produced bit by bit by pols thinking only of the next election, bureaucrats building their own empires, militarists seeking secure fuel supplies, and corporate fascists bidding for privilege. And it drives our coercive utopians crazy.

What I mean by an "energy policy" is no policy. Or, rather, no state policy, a state of affairs that would allow each of us to have our own policy with respect to peacefully creating, selling, buying, and using energy. In other words — and they're words that you've seen before in these pages — Smash the state. The only utopian thing about that is that we can't seem to get there from here. [Nicholas Strakon]

A related column by Strakon: "Global warming: What if the Left is right?" (October 27, 2007).

(June 2008)

Professor McCain and the Hoosier schoolmistress. John McCain is now offering to school his young competitor, Barack Obama, during a joint trip to Mesopotamia that Bombs Away is proposing. Let's take McCain at his word for a moment, even though the idea is just a political ploy in bad faith.

Wasn't it McCain who, in Baghdad a year ago, toured what he termed a "safe neighborhood" in Baghdad while wearing body armor and being escorted by heavily armed U.S. troops and helo gunships?

Wasn't it McCain who, shortly after returning to the United State, sang the version of "Barbara Ann" in which he threatened the Iranian people with bombing, thereby earning his indelible nickname?

Wasn't it McCain who, touring Iraq this year with his minder Joe Lieberman, repeatedly revealed his confusion about the various groups resisting the Empire in that country?

And was it not McCain who, when Obama declared that Bush's War opened up Iraq to al Qaeda, replied, "That's history — that's the past — that's talking about what happened before." Apparently, if McCain does have some teaching ability, it does not apply to the teaching of history.

One is permitted to wonder just how much McCain has learned during his little forays of globe-trotting and, therefore, just how much he would be able to teach the Young Imam.

I don't think such plastic-bubble globe-trotting has much educational value in any case. In 1985 I spent a couple weeks in Europe, including several days in Switzerland. Owing to a bizarre upgrade in our accommodations, my group of weefolk wound up staying at the Hotel Intercontinental in Lausanne, overlooking the lake and sharing the public areas of the hotel with oil sheikhs and their mistresses. That was another kind of plastic-bubble tourism, and upon returning to these shores I resisted the temptation to represent myself as an authority on all things Swiss, though I did lecture everyone within earshot about how the Swiss knew how to cook a steak and the French didn't. But maybe I'd have been bolder if I'd had a Lieberman with me, or some political generals.

On our bus, by the way, was an Indiana schoolmistress who, in retrospect, reminds me a little of old Bombs Away in terms of her perspective and openness toward learning. I must emphasize that, in what follows, she was not trying to be a comedian. When we disembarked on the outskirts of a preserved Mediaeval village that straggled up an incline, the lady opined, "They ought to knock down some of those buildings so the bus could go up the hill." And as we were wending our way along mountain roads, coming into Switzerland, with the Alps shouting their magnificence all around us, she commented, "Far as I'm concerned, they can give this country back to the Indi'ns."

Maybe McCain should seek out that lady and make her his running mate. Who knows: she might advise him to give Iraq back to the Iraqis. [Nicholas Strakon] (May 2008)

TLD Golden Oldie. In observance of War Celebration Weekend 2008, I invite readers to refresh themselves with this piece by senior editor Ronn Neff from 1999: "What was the 'greatest generation'?" (May 2008)

Perpetual war for perpetual jobs. I recently watched the movie "American Gangster," starring Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe, and one line of the script has stuck with me. Washington plays a major Harlem drug gangster, and Crowe plays the head of a special narcotics unit across the river in Jersey. The story is set in the late '60s through the mid '70s.

Crowe's character is a "good cop," along the lines of Serpico, and he enjoys a notoriety paralleling Serpico's among his corrupt or indolent colleagues. At one point, grousing to his boss about his unit's failure to extract cooperation from other agencies, including the feds, he comments:

"You know, I don't think they want this [the illegal-drug industry] to stop. I think it employs too many people. Judges, lawyers, cops, politicians, prison guards, probation officers ... They stop bringing dope into the country, about 100,000 people are going to be out of a job."

I wonder what that job-loss figure would be now, thirty-some years later, if our rulers abandoned their Drug War? Very much greater, I'm sure.

One might hope that the loss of state power would be very much greater, too — but it is likely that much of the damage the war has already inflicted on our liberties is permanent. [Nicholas Strakon] (May 2008)

Sorry, Holy Pair, you can't have it both ways. For normal Americans — however few they may be — the Democrats' cage-match for the Emperor nomination has been full of entertainment on the P.C. front, as we've heard Hillary partisans repeatedly shriek, You can't say that about her! She's a womunnnn! and Obama partisans repeatedly wail, You can't say that about him! He's half-Africannnn!

It's been fun, but now, as I expected, the Obama forces are starting to lay down the special rules and restrictions that they want to enforce against Bombs Away McCain and his supporters in the fall campaign.

As you know, in one of her campaign appearances Michelle Obama confessed a lack of pride in her country during the dark time before her spouse started his ministry for its redemption. GOP forces in Tennessee duly posted a mildly critical Internet spot juxtaposing La Obama's lack of pride with the stout national pride of good ol' boys in the Volunteer State — whereupon the Rev. Dr. Obama responded by telling Republicans: "Lay off my wife." (ABC News, May 19, 2008) He added, "When you start attacking family members, there's a lack of decency there." And he characterized the attack, mild and indirect though it was, as "detestable."

In truth I'm not quite sure whether that qualifies as P.C. or not. Actually it comes off as rather patriarchal, but then the whole feminist "I Am Woman — Hear Me Whine for Special Protection!" thing is shot through with contradiction. In any event, this absurdity I do not find so entertaining.

If Michelle Obama or Chelsea Clinton or — for that matter — Bill Clinton doesn't want to come under attack from political rivals, that family member should, er, not make political speeches. Could anything be plainer? I am amazed that anyone, even in the degraded mainstream media, took the Young Imam's complaint seriously.

That's especially so in light of the fact that the ABC story blandly goes on to report: "Michelle Obama denied reports that she had personally ruled out considering Clinton as Obama's vice presidential running mate." The Obamas rose to no dudgeon, high or low, at the suggestion that little nonpolitical Michelle, so frail and so meek, might be in a position to decisively influence her husband's political machinations. Instead, La Obama praised Hillary, declaring that "there is no way that I would say absolutely no to one of the most successful and powerful and groundbreaking women on this planet." From that, we are entitled to conclude that Michelle could say no if she wanted to.

We'll have to wait and see whether the Obama forces observe the rule they've laid down for Bombs Away when it comes to the possibility of their attacking Mrs. Bombs Away, multimillionaire replacement wife and ex-babe Cindy McCain. I'm sure she knows of some closets where certain skeletons are hanging, even if she didn't help hang 'em there. [Nicholas Strakon] (May 2008)

Who runs America? Following the death of Rep. Tom Lantos (D-Calif.) in February, Howard Berman (D-Calif.) succeeded him as chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Lantos, a Hungarian-born Jew, was famed as the "only Holocaust survivor in Congress," even though there were no "death camps" in Hungary. He was actually a petty, cowardly bully who routinely abused witnesses at hearings, once going so far as to compare a witness to a Nazi, and then using his power as chairman to forbid the man from speaking a word in his own defense. A few years ago Lantos ran his automobile over the foot of a child in a Capitol parking area and fled the scene rather than stop and own up to his misdeed.

He was, of course, lionized as "brave" and as a "humanitarian" when he finally ceased polluting the planet with his presence. Berman, like Lantos, is Jewish. He is followed in seniority on the committee by Gary Ackerman (D-N.Y.), also a Jew. Then come Eni Faleomavaega, the non-white, non-voting delegate from American Samoa, and Donald Payne (D-N.J.), a Negro.

Next in the pecking order is Brad Sherman (D-Calif.), a Jew, followed by Robert Wexler (D-Fla.), another Jew, and Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.), yet another Jew.

One has to go down nine places in the original majority membership list to find the first white Western man — Bill Delahunt (D-Mass.), who is closely followed by Gregory Meeks (D-N.Y.), a Negro, and Diane Watson (D-Calif.), a Negress.

I don't think much else needs to be said. The cold, hard facts speak for themselves. [Douglas Olson] (May 2008)

Yankee president, stay home. Don't fall out of your chair, now, but I have to agree with the Squirrel-Monkey-in-Chief on something. If elected, Barack Obama should not go abroad to talk with adversaries of the Empire. I have to agree also with partisans of Tibet: George Bush himself should not attend the Summer Olympics — but not just because the Games are in Beijing. Moreover, Americans should not have tolerated Bush's traveling to Israel or to any other foreign country.

If I were still a constitutionalist republican, I'd favor a constitutional amendment prohibiting a president from leaving the national territory of the United State while in office. Woodrow Wilson was the first to do so, if you don't count Abraham Lincoln's visit to Richmond, Virginia, in April 1865. Franklin Roosevelt started the real globe-trotting, during World War II. He even went all the way to Tehran and Yalta to conspire with his beloved comrade, Uncle Joe.

Please note that I have just named the three men whom I consider to have been the worst American presidents. All of them were major founders of the U.S. Empire — in Lincoln's case, the unitary continental empire.

Such an amendment would not have prevented the rise of the Empire — as an anarchist, I maintain that pretty pieces of paper, or even parchment, ultimately cannot prevent anything — but it might have erected a few inconvenient hurdles for the empire-builders in the Presidential Palace. And it would be a very good thing, even in our desperate state during this darkling time, if the emperor were somehow restrained from leaving the country.

Ideally, of course, we wouldn't have an emperor in the country, either. By the way, there is plenty in the Constitution that would have prevented that — if constitutions really worked to restrain the power-hungry ladies and gentlemen responsible for enforcing them. [Nicholas Strakon] (May 2008)

She's melllltingggg! Nicholas Munchkin of TLDville hopes it's not premature to make a joyful noise:

Ding Dong! The Witch is dead. Which old Witch? The Wicked Witch!
Ding Dong! The Wicked Witch is dead.
Wake up, you sleepy head.
Rub your eyes, get out of bed.
Wake up, the Wicked Witch is dead.
She's gone where the goblins go,
Below – below – below.
Yo-ho, let's open up and sing and ring the bells out.
Ding Dong, the merry-oh, sing it high, sing it low.
Let them know the Wicked Witch is dead!

(May 2008)

There's obscene, and then there's obscene. The New York Times recently unleashed its propagandists to bemoan a sharp increase in the use of Food Stamps — one of the most openly obscene welfare programs because it was designed not to feed the hungry but to keep American farmers prosperous by increasing the purchase of food. Stop and think: Why else would it have been created by two farm-state legislators — Bob Dole (R-Kans.) and George McGovern (D-S.D.) — instead of by inner-city (code word for black) pols?

"Driven by a painful mix of layoffs and rising food and fuel prices," writes Erik Eckholm of the New York Times, "the number of Americans receiving food stamps is projected to reach 28 million in the coming year, the highest level since the aid program began in the 1960s." ("As Jobs Vanish and Prices Rise, Food Stamp Use Nears Record," March 31, 2008.)

That is a deliberate distortion. About 10 percent of the population was using Food Stamps during the late 1970s and early 1980s, and the projection cited by Eckholm does not approach that level, although the total monetary outlay is, of course, higher.

But stop and think again: The U.S. Department of Agriculture, which administers the program (another telling indication that it is actually a farm program and not a hunger program) has been pressing for decades to increase the volume of its giveaways.

A February 14, 2008, press release from that department boasts:

Agriculture Secretary Ed Schafer today announced that USDA will offer $5 million in grants to improve participation in food stamps for those who are eligible but for a variety of reasons do not receive the help intended for them.

"Nationally, about 65 percent of all those who are eligible for good stamp benefits are currently participating in the program," said Schafer. "Yet fewer than 31 percent of the elderly and 50 percent of Hispanic families who are eligible for food stamps are actually participating."

Yes, the bureaucrats are so desperate to give away more of your money that they are using $5 million of it to bribe states to increase the number of parasites. And these "participation grants" are nothing new; they have been offered for years.

The Times and the actual state of the economy notwithstanding, couldn't those machinations have something to do with the increase...? [Douglas Olson] (May 2008)

Government's crystal ball cracks again. Preparing for the current campaign for emperor, states competed more fiercely than ever before to one-up each other and schedule early primaries. In so doing they sought to give their voters (or local political apparat) a better chance to influence the nominations. On the Republican side, the competition may have been worthwhile for certain states. But on the Democrat side, it certainly wasn't. Appearing in my home state earlier this month, Barack Obama noted that, in the super-late May 6 primary, Indiana Democrats may actually help decide something for the first time since 1968.

State legislatures' scramble to schedule ever-earlier primaries now looks like another good example of bollixed-up government "planning," doesn't it? — at least on the Democrat side. Seems appropriate. Though both ruling parties are thoroughly totalitarian, it's the Democrats who jabber the most about "planning" our society and economy. [Henry Gallagher Fields] (April 2008)

Clintons still pimping out daughter. After using their political muscle to end, at least temporarily, the career of MSNBC commentator David Shuster for observing that Chelsea Clinton was being "pimped out" by Hillary's campaign, her parents continue to shamelessly pimp out their only daughter to promote her mother's pitiful delusions of grandeur. (Don't even think about demanding an apology or a suspension from The Last Ditch, Hillary! Unlike those wimps at MSNBC, we never back away from the truth.) With growing desperation to win the Pennsylvania primary in the face of shrinking poll numbers, Hillary's campaign scheduled surrogate Chelsea for an appearance at Woody's, a notorious "gay" bar in Philadelphia. To counter that sacrificial lamb, lesbian singer Melissa Etheridge pimped herself for Barack Obama by telephone at the event, which was sponsored by the homosexual National Stonewall Democrats group.

Hillary won the backing of the Liberty City Democratic Club, Philly's largest queer political organization. "We are proud to endorse Senator Hillary Clinton in this important primary cycle," declared spokesman Matthew Woodcock. (Sic: I'm not making this up!) "Her record of accomplishments is proof positive that she'll be a fighter for the LGBT [lesbian-gay-bisexual-transgender] community in the White House, and that's what we need." [Douglas Olson] (April 2008)

Br'er Jeremiah and Br'er Barack. I hope this doesn't strike you as too conspiratorialist, but I have to wonder whether Minister Jeremiah Wright, in his interview with Bill Moyers and in his remarks at the National Press Club and the NAACP, was deliberately falling on his sword while appearing to nick Barack Obama with it. Minister Wright "dissed" Obama — if I may employ the popular ghettospeak — and thus handed the senator a perfect opportunity to definitively sever his ties with the radical Afro-cleric. Obama lost no time doing so, and now — he and his campaign hope — he can "move on."

It may not work; the telescreen talkers are still chattering about Obama's judgment and timing in handling the Wright crisis before now. But all that aside, if it were a stratagem, it would be interesting to know whether Obama or his handlers were in on it, or whether it was a brainstorm that Minister Wright came up with on his own in an attempt to help the candidate.

I never tire of quoting Ronn Neff in "Cognitive vanity": "Deceit is the basis of all politics." We are talking here, after all, about bigtime imperial politics — and Obama is one of the biggest charlatans to come down the political pike since Bill Clinton himself. [Nicholas Strakon] (April 2008)

The "elitist" evasion. Obama flacks always come out with some version of the same thing whenever a telescreen talker asks whether the Imam is an "elitist." The version I've heard most recently is that Obama was "born so far on the wrong side of the tracks that he couldn't even hear the trains."

In itself that's balderdash, of course. But my response to the overall claim is, No, no, no, no, no. No one is claiming that Obama is a woodpile scion of the Rockefellers or Vanderbilts, or that he grew up playing polo. Of the preening left-wing "bourgeois Bohemians" whom David Brooks surveyed in Bobos in Paradise, compulsively shopping for $400 designer hammers and hitherto-unheard-of kinds of cheese, I'm pretty sure a good proportion are sons and daughters of grade-school teachers and insurance agents. In this country those who issue from petit-bourgeois or even factory-class origins, graduate from one of the Bolshevik universities, and make their way into the corporate – media – law – administrative – political nomenklatura wind up as the shrillest, most obnoxious, most compulsive elitists you can ever hope to avoid. This isn't 17th-century France with aristos of ancient houses inspecting each other's coat of arms; it's 21st-century America with female lawyers of obscure origins sniffing over each other's diplomas and Hermès accessories.

Barack Obama is a graduate of Columbia and Harvard, isn't he? Or did I get that wrong? Seems I even heard that his father was a Harvard man, too. That's worth remembering even if Obama père sold collision coverage from State Farm on the side. [Nicholas Strakon]

P.S. Surveying the site, I find I have neglected to mention that I'm actually rooting for the Young Imam in the current contest for emperor, in my half-hearted way. That ought to give you an idea of what I think of the other candidates and, indeed, of this entire carnival of sociopathy. My hypothesis is that Obama has the better chance of keeping Field Marshal Bombs Away out of the imperial palace. I may be wrong about that, of course. For that matter I may be wrong in rooting for Obama: I rooted, half-heartedly, for George W. Bush in 2000, and just look what happened. Could the Horror of Gorror have been worse?

When we predict what some pol will do once in office, our only hope for avoiding Neff's "cognitive vanity" is to predict that he'll do something terrible. (April 2008)

Doesn't it take a cornfield? Hillary has been campaigning in the Hoosier state for a while now, but, strangely enough, she hasn't yet discovered a third or fourth set of grandparents down in Poland, Ind., or talked fondly of munching breaded-tenderloin sandwiches at Nick's in Huntington when she was in third grade, or reminisced about visiting Uncle Luther's old cottage on Lake Maxinkuckee. It's confusing. Here I thought she hailed from every state in the Union. [Henry Gallagher Fields] (April 2008)

Bill on the Bosnia trip. OK, wait a minute. Bill Clinton is a much better liar than this. How many immediately obvious untruths did he pack into his defense of Hillary's Bosnia lie? Three? Four? And not only that: he went on to suggest that Hill may have been having a senior moment when she produced her fairytale! Over on the Republican side der alte Feldmarschall must be cackling.

Is Bill deliberately sabotaging his wife, trying to get her to withdraw? [Nicholas Strakon] (April 2008)

Once again, government chefs do their best "To Serve Man." Lest stranded American Airlines ticket holders forced to camp out in fusty airline terminals and dingy airport hotels think that their sacrifices are in the service of air safety, allow me to draw their attention to the following article at

In the FAA spot checks that began on April 7, inspectors found that the attachment of the wiring bundles didn't match agency specifications such as the orientation of certain clamps and ties, [company executive vice president Dan] Garton said.

Mechanics "had taken certain latitudes" in the work, Garton said, not realizing the "greater emphasis on strict compliance" at the FAA since U.S. lawmakers began raising questions last month about its oversight of airline maintenance. ("American Air Had 'No Choice' About Grounding Jets a Second Time," by Mary Schlangenstein, April 10, 2008)

Translated, that means that the FAA decided to come down hard on the airlines to curry favor with Congress, which was getting shirty about the agency's failure to find cracks in 737 fuselages. As a result, it yanked hundreds of planes from service — stranding hundreds of thousands of travelers — because some cable clamps and ties weren't installed exactly as it prescribed.

There has been no indication that the installation violations actually affected safety. Almost certainly, they would not have caused an unsafe condition in the couple of weeks it would have taken American Airlines to correct them on a more normal schedule.

But that didn't matter to the geniuses at the FAA. The tens of millions of dollars lost by the airline, and the even greater costs imposed on its passengers, are acceptable — even desirable — because they draw attention away from the agency's manifest failure to prevent or correct actual safety problems, and its disastrous failure to update the United State's ancient, creaky air traffic control system.

But our guardians of airline safety are on the job now. And those thousands of flight cancellations and the suffering of would-be travelers prove it! [David T. Wright]

Utopian Watch. I expect the sages of the Consensus World to assure us that this latest disaster of regulation proves — the need for more and better regulation. [Nicholas Strakon] (April 2008)

Latest Noose: the jig is up for black professor. It has been a very strange affair, even for an Orwellian "hate crime," ever since a 4-foot noose was discovered on the office door of Columbia Teachers College professor Madonna Constantine in October. She is one of only two tenured black profs at the school.

First, the college forced the NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force to obtain a warrant for the video surveillance tapes from the building, leaving everyone wise in the history of "hate crimes" to conclude that the most likely suspect was a Negro, and likely the "victim" herself. Providing additional fuel for those speculations was the fact that the cops maintained a studied silence for months after they obtained the tapes.

Now, finally, the other shoe has dropped. Some weeks ago the college "victimized" poor Madonna yet again by finding her responsible for at least two dozen instances of plagiarism of both text and ideas from the works of fellow faculty members and her students. (She still denies the charges.) It turns out that this 18-month investigation was quietly being conducted at the time the noose was discovered, making irresistible the assumption that the hate hoax was designed to deflect the probe, or at least create sympathy for the thief.

Now a Manhattan grand jury has issued a subpoena to the college for all the prof's records, including documents relating to the school's investigation, which was contracted out to a private investigator and a law firm.

It would seem that only two relevant questions remain:

(1) Did Madonna do the "hateful" deed herself, or did she have a friend do it?

(2) Will the perpetrator of this anti-white hoax be charged with a "hate crime" for faking a "hate crime"? [Douglas Olson] (April 2008)

Daughters of Charlemagne, or, We have to understand how far down we are. By now I expect we've all seen some of the tape of the cheerleader assault in Florida, if we could stand to watch it. In a story at, the local sheriff is quoted as saying, "Shocking. I've never seen anything like it. [The girls] seem to have absolutely no remorse at all. I don't understand the sheer violence."

The photos posted by (see link on that page) reveal that five of the girls arrested appear to be white, like their victim. One arrestee, Kayla Hassell, 13, is nonwhite. Both of the boys involved, who are accused of standing lookout, appear to be white. All have American-sounding names, with the possible exception of Miss Nichols, 16, whose first name is Mercedes.

I agree with the sheriff: it is intensely shocking that some young girls in America, including white girls, are now capable of perpetrating sadistic, protracted criminal beatings.

But the violence itself is not the most shocking aspect of the story. That distinction is reserved for the attackers' encouraging someone to tape their crime with the agreed intention of posting it on YouTube and MySpace. The girls are now to be tried as adults on a collection of major felony charges, including kidnapping, and given the existence of the tape one must pity their defense attorney, if he is not a wizard at getting evidence excluded.

We have to grasp, here, not only the collapse of morality among the attackers and the collapse of their family culture but also the collapse of their very mind. Apparently they were unable to envision the complete disruption of their lives that would result from their act and the sabotaging of their legal defense that would result from their taping it. If they did envision all of that, they didn't care. As I find myself asking all the time these days, in various contexts, How is that possible?

Youths have always been wild and heedless compared with adults, I may be told. Well, look. Forty years ago — even twenty-five years ago — if we had seen tape of such an attack we could not have believed that it was carried out by "normal" suburban high-school girls, all but one of them white. We would have assumed it originated in a back ward of the Hospital for Criminally Insane Girls, during a lapse of vigilance by the inmates' keepers. I'm 58. I'm old enough to remember the America that was.

Honestly, in light of stories such as the one out of Florida, I wonder what the point is of our continuing to analyze imperial crimes in distant lands, neocon lies, racial politics, ruling-class exploitation, bureaucratic tyranny, and all the rest of it. But I suppose we must persevere. [Nicholas Strakon]

Ed Tom's take. In No Country for Old Men, set in 1980, Cormac McCarthy has his tired old sheriff, Ed Tom Bell, observe:

I read in the papers here a while back some teachers come across a survey that was sent out back in the thirties to a number of schools across the country. Had this questionnaire about what was the problems with teachin in the schools. And they come across these forms, they'd been filled out and sent in from around the country answerin these questions. And the biggest problems they could name was things like talkin in class and runnin in the hallways. Chewin gum. Copyin homework. Things of that nature. So they got one of them forms that was blank and printed up a bunch of em and sent em back out to the same schools. Forty years later. Well, here come the answers back. Rape, arson, murder. Drugs. Suicide.
We're probably all familiar with this story, which McCarthy has not made up. But his Sheriff Bell character comments further:
So I think about that. Because a lot of the time ever when I say anything about how the world is goin to hell in a handbasket people will just sort of smile and tell me I'm gettin old. That it's one of the symptoms. But my feelin about that is that anybody that cant tell the difference between rapin and murderin people and chewin gum has got a whole lot bigger of a problem than what I've got.
Forty years is not a long time neither. Maybe the next forty of it will bring some of em out from under the ether. If it aint too late.
We're more than halfway, now, into Sheriff Bell's projected time span. How well are most Americans doing in recovering from the anesthesia? [NS] (April 2008)

Welcome to Hell, Geraldine! Welcome to hell, Geraldine Ferraro — a hell of your own making, you and the leftists who have worked for two generations to criminalize thought and speech in this once-free country. Long a champion of the rights of minorities over the majority, you now know — albeit only in a very small way — what happens to the "mere" citizen who dares to speak out against the engine of anti-white oppression that you helped set in motion.

You have been thoroughly "spanked" by both the media and your fellow Democrat politicians for your comment that "if Obama was [sic] a white man, he would not be in this position. And if he was [sic] a woman, of any color, he would not be in this position. He happens to be very lucky to be who he is. And the country is caught up in the concept."

Your offense is all the greater for the fact that your statement was absolutely and undeniably true.

As part of the hellishness of your situation, Miss Ferraro, I want you to know that Obama himself agrees with you! In an adulatory 2005 Chicago Tribune story, reporter Jeff Zeleny tells us:

In winning the Democratic Senate primary in Illinois, Obama drew as many as two white votes for every black one, showing nearly unprecedented crossover appeal for a black candidate in a statewide race.

Obama acknowledges, with no small irony, that he benefits from his race.

If he were white, he once bluntly noted, he would simply be one of nine freshmen senators, almost certainly without a multimillion-dollar book deal and a shred of celebrity. Or would he have been elected at all? ("When it comes to race, Obama makes his point — with subtlety," June 26, 2005)

But in today's America, Miss Ferraro, you unfortunately cannot suffer any punishment comparable to the damage you have done to this nation and the white majority whose ancestors created it. To be condemned and damned by the aliens whom you have served as a lickspittle for most of your pathetic, traitorous life is nothing compared to what you deserve. But if this situation causes you for a single moment to reflect that your actions and your anti-white "cause" may possibly have been misguided, that will be a greater penance than many of your unrepentant co-conspirators will ever experience. [Douglas Olson] (April 2008)

Anti-Semitism among the MSM? By now we've all seen the tape of Joe Lieberman whispering instruction into the ear of old man Bombs Away on the difference between al Qaeda and the Iraqi insurgents. One wiseacre of our acquaintance points out that if that image were translated into cartoon form it would be the sort of thing that got Julius Streicher hanged. (April 2008)

She "misspoke." Hillary Clinton's recent declaration that in 1996 she was met at a Bosnian airport by sniper fire rather than by a little girl proferring flowers is more evidence that these power-maniacs differ radically from normal people. They think differently, if in fact they can be said to think as we understand thinking. Some of us here at The Ditch have wondered in the past whether any of them can be said to have actual ideas or beliefs, apart from the belief that it is pleasurable and profitable to wield power over their fellow humans.

Now we may question whether Hillary Clinton, in particular, has actual memories, as normal people have memories.

I suppose that I ought to leave room for an alternative to sociopathy or self-induced amnesia. Perhaps Senator Clinton is just a robot who will reflexively read aloud anything that ignorant or dishonest scriptwriters shove in front of her. Sort of like a TV newsreader.

Whichever Clintonistas are actually manufacturing the current untruths, it must be said that in the past they lied much more deftly. Either that, or the media just let them get away with it much more easily. [Nicholas Strakon]

"Normal people," Strakon? Is that really a good description of the millions of Americans who troop out at every opportunity and vote for such creeps? [Modine Herbey] (April 2008)

Where's Marshal Stalin when you need him? Constitutionalists, among others, may wish to meditate on something Hillary Clinton said in a speech on March 27. It is with respect to this sort of thing, unfortunately, that we may reasonably fear that she has real beliefs and is describing them accurately.

She said that what Americans need is a president who is commander-in-chief of the economy.

And some continue to insist — even after seven years of Marshal G.W. Bush — that America's political culture is not totalitarian! [Henry Gallagher Fields] (April 2008)

Irresistible. One wants to be careful about making jokes in the wake of atrocities, but it's a little different when they're driven by righteous outrage. So I pass along this response from an AR reader to American Renaissance's snippage of news stories about the coed killings in North Carolina and Georgia:

"I am very surprised by this development. I had expected the culprits to be white lacrosse players."

With respect to the case against Eve Carson's attackers, those who still repose some confidence in the basic structure of the "criminal justice" system may be glad that Michael Nifong, persecutor of whites, is no longer D.A. in Durham County, N.C. (March 2008)

Keeper-in-Chief? As the mainstream media moaned with delight over Rev. Barack Obama's gettin'-right-with-soggy-whites sermon of March 18, I was waiting for someone to point out that he had revealed himself to be an ignoramus in at least one respect.

Quoth the Holy One: "Let us be our brother's keeper, Scripture tells us."

Where exactly? Not in Genesis. I take as my text Genesis 4:9:

And the Lord said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And [Cain] said, I know not: Am I my brother's keeper?
In effect, Cain was cracking wise to God, which most religious believers, I suppose, would consider a very bad idea. And indeed we sense in the next verse that God was not in the mood for such badinage:
And [God] said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground.
Obama claims that Jeremiah Wright led him to Christ, and maybe that is so, but it appears that Minister Wright did less well in leading him to the Old Testament.

Without venturing into deep exegesis, a place I have no business being, I will propose that the "we are our brother's keeper" injunction is an unintelligent canard based on a wild misreading. Actually, I was taught in Sunday School that it is a canard. It is a canard of long standing, and Obama is hardly alone in disseminating it. Many other socialists have done the same.

What is a "keeper," anyway? Slave-keeper? Keeper of the mentally incompetent? Zoo-keeper? Those are the images that occur to me. What image occurs to Obama? Does it feature a cage? [Nicholas Strakon] (March 2008)

Renowned clerical bellower Jeremiah Wright is due to be honored by the Brite Divinity School, which is situated on the campus of Texas Christian University, in Fort Worth. But according to Holly Yan of the Dallas Morning News, TCU has now expelled the event from campus, citing security concerns. ("TCU moves event honoring the Rev. Jeremiah Wright off campus," March 20)

As for Brite, Yan says it is standing firm. She quotes its Website: "Brite does not endorse all of the statements or views of any of the church leaders recognized by the Divinity School. Brite is recognizing Dr. Wright for his forty-year ministry linking divine justice and social justice."

Excellent! Now we may be sure that in future Brite will bravely honor white clergymen with similarly impressive and laudable ministries — clergymen, I mean, who stand up for white rights, white achievements, and white identity, and utter fiery denunciations of the United State's criminal and imperialistic foreign policy, pointing out as Minister Wright did that on 9/11 chickens did indeed come home to roost.

I wouldn't want the fellow ranting about it in my living room, but when you're right, you're right, and Wright is right. And whites are right when they say the same thing. Right? [Nicholas Strakon] (March 2008)

Crimespeak! On March 14 I heard some commentary on MSNBC about New York's new governor, David Paterson, a "legally blind" Negro. It was meant as happytalk, but I'm afraid the reporter strayed into some deadly territory. I think he should be punished, just as so many other linguistically careless whites have been punished.

He said that while aides have to read everything to Paterson, the man is not totally blind. The reporter has played basketball with him, and he plays well.

Does MSNBC really want to stand behind the statement that in the new governor of New York we have a Negro who can't read but who can play basketball? [Nicholas Strakon] (March 2008)

At least they leave the snake-handlin' to us ofays. I wanted to have some fun with the Jeremiah Wright Crisis, but in view of what's happening on Wall Street, it'll have to keep 'til next time. For now I'll just pass along a characterization I heard on the George Stephanopoulos program for Sunday the 16th, from the Negro member of his panel, Donna Brazile. She's a Democrat Party flack, and in an attempt to pooh-pooh the flap she said that among the Negro preachers whose wisdom she has personally imbibed, Rev. Wright comes across as — a moderate! [Nicholas Strakon] (March 2008)

The government's Fault. I have postulated that 9/11 — a direct and massive physical attack on the Dark Suits — shook them sufficiently to weaken their grip on the Washington apparatus with respect to policy formation, liberating the Bush neocons to work their havoc. That loosening of control may have helped lead to what we're seeing now — a slow-motion financial 9/11 in Dark Suitdom — but the bones and muscle of the great fascist System remain intact. For now.

The official regime is rushing to the rescue, most remarkably stepping in to save Bear Stearns, the country's fifth-largest investment bank. In that endeavor it is being assisted by JP Morgan Chase — a name with which to conjure, representing as it does a melding of the two great and competing ruling-class interests of old, the Morgans and the Rockefellers. (Apparently Morgan Chase is going to be able to snap up Bear Stearns for two bucks a share. Ah, there's always a silver lining for these folks.)

On Sunday, Fox News's Chris Wallace asked finance minister Henry Paulson whether he didn't worry about the "moral hazard" represented by the government's bailing out a failing enterprise. Now, Paulson is a Goldman Sachs veteran — I almost wrote "operative" — and, while it's almost reassuring to know that a Suit instead of a Likudnik holds the finance portfolio, that means that Paulson is responsible for safeguarding established Wall Street interests. In fact, Goldman Sachs itself is said to be in some danger from the sub-prime cluster-fff ... umble, along with Morgan Stanley, Barclays, Vanguard, Janus, Fidelity, and UBS. Long story short, Paulson gave Wallace a smudgy non-answer answer, but one thing about it that wasn't smudgy was Paulson's belief that the "stability" of the System trumped the moral hazard.

I'm tempted to crack wise and wonder whether there's still enough morality in the System to be placed at hazard. But there is. The fascist System awards privilege to politically connected interests — that's actually its reason for being — and every time it does so, it substitutes its judgment for that of the market. That means that as the System's privilege machine rumbles on and on, decade after decade, it piles distortion upon distortion, malinvestment upon malinvestment. But until some final, absolutely totalitarian kind of fascism is reached, there is always a new malinvestment possible, a new blurring of the market's vision, a new crippling of the market's wondrous and automatic cybernetic action. And, I might add, a new injustice.

If Franklin Roosevelt, in 1933, had let the corrupt financial system truly collapse, hemorrhage away its malinvestments, and restructure itself on an honest free-market basis, that would have amounted to an 8.0 earthquake in economic terms. It would have been terrible, for ordinary folks as well as the swells, but soon over. And whatever real assets existed would still have existed. Instead, Roosevelt saved the bankers. (That was his reason for being.) If the System collapsed now, the liquidation of malinvestments would amount to a 9.0 earthquake. That, too, would soon be over, but I'm afraid that organized society would be over with it.

The System has chained us down, with them, astride the San Andreas Fault. Either we accompany them ever further into political-economic fraud and corruption, or we come asunder. If the Fault continues to hold another twenty years, and then gives way, we'll probably be facing a 10.0 earthquake.

Even leaving cultural matters aside, you can see why I've rarely been accused of being an optimist.

But I do always try to find the humor. And I think it's pretty funny, in a dark way, that for almost a century now the government has pretended to manage the "business cycle" — when it created the damn thing in the first place. [Nicholas Strakon]

But what does the overthrow of Eliot Spitzer have to do with all of this? Hey, I'm serious! [Henry Gallagher Fields] (March 2008)

Connections. When the Southern college students Eve Carson and Lauren Burk — both Georgians — were murdered last week, some of the mainstream media speculated about whether the crimes might be "connected." I thought that was a bizarre fantasy, at least as the media meant it. What? — were the killings a conspiracy on the part of the New Manson Family, the Russian Mafia, or perhaps al Qaeda?

I immediately suspected another kind of connection between the deaths of the two young women, one Nordic and the other Jewish and (perhaps) partly nonwhite but mostly white-appearing. I would have bet a thousand dollars that both killers were male Negroes. And so it has transpired, certainly in the case of Miss Burk and almost certainly in the case of Miss Carson.

I suspected also that when the assailants were revealed to be Negro, the mainstream media would abruptly drop all talk of a "connection" between the murders. That has happened.

I was able to predict accurately not because I am a genius or a fortune-teller. I was able to predict accurately because I am a race realist.

Our mainstream media insist that many of America's young white people have been blinded to racial differences: they tell us that the youths no longer even see differences in skin color. What they really mean is that white youths see those differences as irrelevant. The media celebrate the blindness, of course; it is celebrated even by "conservative" media spokesmen such as the former Florida Republican congressman Joe Scarborough, host of MSNBC's "Morning Joe" program. (I note that the media do not spend much time trying to convince us that young blacks have been rendered similarly indifferent to racial differences.)

I don't know what part, if any, such racial blindness played in the deaths of the two women. Even race realists must take care to remain at Condition Orange when on the street, lest they encounter rampaging male Negroes, who seem to possess natural gifts for lurking, stalking, and attacking their prey with astonishing speed and violence. But such blindness will hardly help preserve the life and health of white youths.

For as long as we are forced to tolerate the presence of dark savages among us, we must arm our youths, and especially our young women, who are naturally less able to protect themselves. Though it may be wise to arm them (and ourselves) with the physical means of protection, doing so will be useless as long as we fail to arm them with knowledge, leading to race realism. [Nicholas Strakon] [March 2008] 

The fall of Spitzer. I celebrate the destruction of New York Governor Eliot Spitzer in a prostitution scandal. This man Spitzer has established a long record of shrill and vindictive enmity toward liberty and justice, and not recently in our history — not recently enough — has such a vaunting servant of Sauron been so well confounded by the very Power for which he lusted.

According to the media, Spitzer was betrayed first by his bank, which played informer to the Central Government Tax Police concerning some transactions in his account that it found "suspicious." The IRS then brought Washington's leading secret police agency — the FBI — into the case. Spitzer's "crime," of course, was paying for consensual sex with another adult. It's a fake crime that he himself had prosecuted, as New York attorney general, in the course of building an unholy résumé that would earn him 70 percent of the votes in the New York gubernatorial election.

Wall Street is said to be "gleeful" today. But we may suspect that, despite his attacks on specific capitalists, Spitzer had until recently remained in good standing with the senior powers on Wall Street. Otherwise, a little phone call would surely have been placed long ago — assuming he has indulged his expensive appetite for a considerable time — and he would be a distant memory by now. It is possible that he has recently offended the top Dark Suits, or that for some other reason they decided that his usefulness was at an end, and finally instructed someone to make that little call. We cannot expect ever to learn those details.

But there is something we can learn from the Spitzer scandal. It offers us a peek into the secret life of our country's political-economic aristocracy. Even if our people see no particular problem in tyranny and injustice, many retain something of a moral sense. And the theme of Stanley Kubrick's final film positively resonates with the Spitzer scandal, in a way, actually, that Clinton's low-rent fornications did not. I doubt that this is precisely how the film's title was meant, but I cannot resist quoting it, as I express the hope that fewer of the sheeple are grazing today with "Eyes Wide Shut." [Nicholas Strakon] [March 2008]

Stop Press. Interviewed on MSNBC this afternoon, longtime Spitzer comrade Alan Dershowitz maintained that no bank would have raised the alarm over the relatively minor sums involved. He insisted that someone "dropped a dime" on the pol. And he seemed to think that we will eventually learn a detail or two about the "little phone call" I mentioned. Whatever happens, I am distressed to find that Alan Dershowitz and I are thinking along similar lines.

I will soon be placing another big bright feather in TLD's cap when I post a review-essay by F. Roger Devlin, whose writings in The Occidental Quarterly I have found delightfully captivating. As an appetizer, here is an excerpt from his article "The Academy: Reform or Secession?" in the Winter 2006-2007 issue. It's from page 65:

In the great majority of cases, young women should be renouncing not sexual relations with men (formerly known as "marriage") but academic work. In its place, we should draw up our own "Women's Studies" curriculum, involving the analysis of such texts as Spock's Baby and Child Care and The Joy of Cooking. This is not a radical proposal. Even granting (only for the sake of argument) that women are "equal" to men in the professions, the survival of our people still depends on someone bearing and nurturing infants: It is hardly likely to be men. Women must do not what they are equal at, but what they are superior at. Many of the young women I have observed in a university setting are severely deluded about themselves and their prospects in life. They are "B" and "C" students who imagine that glamorous careers in law and medicine are theirs for the asking, and that they will be able to marry and raise children in their spare time whenever they choose to do so. Feminism and prosperity have set them up for enormous disappointments, and they desperately need proper guidance, preferably from a "predator" (i.e., husband).

Worst of all, there are the lesbian recruitment programs known as Women's Studies. These courses are not merely doctrinally unsound; they are notoriously easy, fostering an illusion of accomplishment without effort. Many veterans of the feminist classroom seriously imagine they are the intellectual equals of persons who have successfully majored in theoretical physics or ancient Greek. It is even possible that the credentialism I [have] criticized ... is itself partly a product of female influence. I have heard more than one man remark on women's seeming faith in the talismanic value of college degrees. Again, this is a confusion between schooling and education.

I am emphatically not recommending that women's education be limited to domestic skills. These are not the highest accomplishments women should aim at, but they are the first and most necessary, the essential basis for all that follows. Further enculturation is actually more important for them now than in the past, since so many will have to educate their own children at home. To this end, I would especially like to see their attention devoted to literature and the arts. In contrast, much of the coursework they are actually taking is either worthless or harmful.

At the time of this posting, Devlin's article had not yet been posted in part or in full at TOQ.

[March 2008]

If millions of acres worldwide are converted from growing food to growing corn for ethanol, is it not a virtual certainty that at some point we shall hear the Left screaming that there are famines and people dying from hunger because of the West's insatiable demand for — or "addiction to" — ethanol?

In what sense, then, can ethanol be said to be "sustainable"? [Ronn Neff] (March 2008) 

Thoroughly modern McCain. The Young Imam recently pointed out that Bush's War opened up Iraq to al Qaeda, whereupon Field Marshal Bombs Away replied, "That's history — that's the past — that's talking about what happened before."

Well, yes, it certainly is. However, I doubt that most people still operating a live brain would take John McCain's "argument" as a satisfactory rejoinder to what Barack Obama said.

If we are to understand the present at all, and if we are to imagine the shape of possible futures at all, it does help to have some understanding of the past. I'm embarrassed at having to point that out.

The Bush regime has made a practice of fleeing from its record of lies, blunders, and crimes by uttering the very same nonsense as McCain. But the live-brained must be forgiven if they fear that the same people who perpetrated lies, blunders, and crimes in the ... excuse the expletive ... p*st will perpetrate similar lies, blunders, and crimes in the future.

If we had any doubt about it, McCain has now definitively placed himself in the category of "the same people."

In doing so, though, he reveals himself to be a thoroughly modern American. Americans have always tended toward historical amnesia, and that tendency got stronger in the 1960s, thanks to the New Left. (This is not the only element of neocon thinking we can trace to the Left, of course.) I recall standing in a cafeteria line when I was in college and overhearing a leftist behind me observe to a coed that "history is irrelevant." As a history major, I had to restrain myself from turning around and slugging him. But I figured his own idiocy would furnish him a condign punishment.

Maybe it did, but there seem to be many Americans who, far from being punished for ignoring or even repudiating history, have instead been rewarded with power, pelf, and privilege. And now, of course, the state schools have largely abandoned teaching history, as we used to understand it, in favor of disseminating the Red Guard party line about the wickedness of white Westerners and the civilization they built. While the schools even in our time propagated many state-building fairy tales, we still got Columbus and Thomas Edison, while today's school victims get Harriet Tubman and Rosa Parks.

Popular as repudiating the p*st may be, it can be hard to do it consistently. McCain himself has hardly been consistent, and I don't expect him to be consistent in the future. In other words, I won't be holding my breath waiting for him to repudiate his own highly touted p*st as Warrior Hero and Martyr of the Republic. [Nicholas Strakon]

Rectification. Maybe it's only the actual past we're supposed to repudiate, and not the Party's various versions of it. [Henry Gallagher Fields] (March 2008) 

"Our conservative values." The current Emperor's father, ex-Emperor George H.W., has now come out and endorsed Field Marshal Bombs Away, asserting that John McCain wants to pursue "our conservative values." Some Republicans who consider themselves conservative are puzzled about what George H.W., of all people, could possibly know about conservatism.

I don't want to sink into the quicksand of what conservative means these days — whether it means anything and in particular whether it can mean anything good — but I will defend one aspect of old George H.W.'s claim to be a conservative. His term in the Palace coincided with some major disturbances and changes in Central and Eastern Europe, and in true anti-secessionist Yankee fashion he did his level best to conserve the Soviet Empire. [Henry Gallagher Fields] (February 2008) 

Hispanics and the heart of darkness. During the day I am usually masochistic enough to let MSNBC drone away at me without respite, but pretty much only as "radio" — that is, I rarely look at the screen. And recently I've been hearing a Comcast commercial all in Spanish (well, except for the word "Comcast"), which I have permitted to rile me just on general principles. But the other day I actually watched the thing for the first time.

Two young Hispanics, one male, one female, are making their way through what one may initially assume is an Amazonian jungle. However, it turns out to be an African jungle, and of a very traditional sort, for our exploring pair find themselves accosted by stereotypical African cannibals, tricked out in the sort of tribal costume one might remember from Playboy cartoons of yore.

In the final scene, the big black chief is grinning as he picks Hispanic meat out of his teeth.

Now, since I don't savvy the replacement American language, it beats me what all this has to do with Comcast, though the Discovery Channel, History Channel, and CNN logos are shown at one point. Maybe the message is that if you watch certain Comcast cable channels, you'll know what parts of the world you should stay the hell away from. The ESPN logo makes an appearance, too; maybe watching ESPN helps Hispanics keep up on a more-sporting kind of African endeavor.

Try to imagine selling something to gringos these days (or any time during the past twenty-five years) while happily representing Africans as primitives, and, much worse, as stereotypical cannibals!

Language and culture seem to be the defining elements here, for the young Hispanics look pretty white. They could be Italian, Spanish-Spanish, or Caucasian Cuban. In any case the commercial strikes me as an interesting sidebar to the current Negro-Hispanic divide in the Democrat presidential race. Unlike today's soggy whites, Hispanics in this country feel no guilt or obligation whatsoever toward the blacks, and they are — not to put too fine a point on it — unsentimental about them and their troubles. Unlike whites, Hispanics feel no compulsion to mince about on tiptoe. Sooner or later, the cannibal spot may land Comcast in very hot water (heh heh) with the Negro Machine and the white sob-sisters, but the target audience probably finds it to be hilarious. [Nicholas Strakon] (February 2008) 

This adversary has only the power we allow it. On February 12, I received a dispatch from Fran Griffin of Griffin Communications, in Vienna, Virginia:

An 11-part lecture series titled "Building Catholic Communities," being held at Catholic University of America (CUA), has been cancelled at the CUA campus because of pressure from the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). The series will be held off-campus.

Katie Lee of the CUA Public Affairs office (202-319-5600) received a call yesterday from the SPLC, and discussed the matter with the Dean who decided to cancel the 10 remaining lectures. The Public Affairs Office told Tim Ehlen, the coordinator, that because the series was not a course, it was not covered by academic freedom. It is unclear what the SPLC complaint was.

The symposium which was to be held in the School of Architecture tomorrow (Wednesday, 2/13/08) at 5:30 p.m. has been moved to the Catholic Information Center, 1501 K St., NW, Washington, D.C.

The event being held tomorrow is titled "A Symposium on the Nature of Community" and will discuss the role of religious communities in creating alternatives to suburban sprawl. Dr. Philip Bess of Notre Dame University and author Dr. E. Michael Jones, editor of CULTURE WARS magazine, are the panelists.

The location of the remaining nine lectures has not been determined.

For information on the lectures, see 1=4.00&ID=19&level=1.

Call the CUA Public Affairs office to complain about this caving in to the Southern Poverty Law Center demands.

Philip Bess is unfamiliar to me, but I certainly know who E. Michael Jones is. The SPLC knows, too. Here's what the always dependable Heidi Beirich has to say about him and about this latest Aktion on the part of her group: "Catholic University Cancels Anti-Semites' Lectures."

Much could be said about this latest despicable attack, but I will strain to restrict myself to two points only.

First, the SPLC emerges here as frighteningly omniscient and omnipresent; naturally, that is how it wants to appear. What happened, no doubt, is that one of its slimy little volunteer agents at CUA tipped Headquarters about the impending outbreak of unapproved opinion on campus. As I understand it, that's how the East German Stasi operated, too — depending mostly on part-time and unpaid informers who either had volunteered or had been intimidated into cooperating. It's also how the Sicherheitsdienst's "Spheres of Life" domestic-surveillance program operated, under an earlier German regime.

Under our own regime of Polite Totalitarianism, the SPLC hardly needs state power to restrict free expression (though it is easy enough to imagine what these creatures would do with state power if they had it). And that brings me to my second observation, namely, that all it took was one lousy phone call from the SPLC Authorities to make CUA capitulate, tout suite. One of my correspondents contends that the Church in America is undergoing a renaissance at the grass-roots level. I'll be convinced that something substantial is really happening when Catholic colleges respond to SPLC instructions with some charitable and loving encouragement to buzz off. [Nicholas Strakon]

Here's the story in the Washington Times: "Catholic University nixes lectures," by Julia Duin (February 13, 2008). According to Duin, the dirty deed was done by "SPLC's Intelligence Project." 

From time to time we have to point out the obvious, and this time it's my turn: In the CUA incident we see revealed again what the "progressive" totalitarians among us mean by "diversity" — uniformity of opinion, determined by them. [Henry Gallagher Fields] (February 2008) 

Among the believers. February 12 was also the day of the Virginia primary. I was talking to Virginian Ronn Neff on the phone, and I jokingly asked him whether he'd voted yet. Soon thereafter he sent me this diverting account:

"You vote yet?" asked the immigrant grocery-checkout gal.

"No," I replied.

"You going to?" she asked.

"None of your confounded business," I didn't reply. "No," I settled for.

She gasped, and her eyes got big. "Why not?"

"I'm not registered." I was trying to avoid unpleasantness.

"You not Amelican?" Did I forget to mention she was Oriental?

"Yes, I am."

"Why you not vote?"

"I don't believe in democracy."

She gasped again, her eyes becoming about as round, I wager, as they could ever get. She was so astonished that the conversation was over.

Ah, if only I could have given her a copy of this story from the Toronto Globe and Mail, in which we see how the people's representatives in the glorious democracy next door to Amelica enact the will of the people: "Toronto Board Holds to Afrocentric School," by James Bradshaw. (February 2008) 

Good timing. An Ohio jury convicted the Negro ex-cop Bobby Cutts today of murdering his white girlfriend, Jessie Davis, and of aggravated murder in the killing of her fetus, "Baby Chloe." (Both proponents and opponents of abortion rights must agree that Ohio criminal law turns out to conflict profoundly with the ideology behind Roe v. Wade.) Will white girls and their parents learn anything from this well-publicized case? Probably not. However, we may take some comfort from the fact that the convictions came during our supervisors' official African-American History Month. The verdict provides a more balanced perspective, amid all the propaganda about George Washington Carver. [Nicholas Strakon] (February 2008) 

The murders at Northern Illinois. We have to expect frequent outbreaks of irrational violence as a civilization breaks up and people are cut adrift from cultural anchors, but that doesn't take us too far in understanding either the latest campus atrocity or the previous ones, assuming any further understanding is possible. Not does it help, in understanding the entire phenomenon, to learn that one shooter had a loveless childhood; or that another shooter had personal conflicts with some of his victims; or that yet another shooter had been diagnosed with ADD.

It's true that young males are always more likely to resort to violence under pressure than low-testosterone females or older males, who if not wiser are at least more fatigued. However, young males suffered from various discontents and disorders in the past, but — with the exception of the tumorous Charles Whitman, in 1966 — they didn't decide to shoot up their teachers and fellow students.

This is as far into understanding as I've penetrated so far, though maybe I should call it speculation rather than understanding: Our current break-up displays a feature that, if not historically unprecedented, is still quite unusual. I have taken to calling it the Great Male Recession, and it is especially damaging as it affects young white males, the irreplaceable carriers of civilization into the future.

The media tell us that the Northern Illinois shooter was an accomplished student, highly respected by his teachers and by his peers. There is more to his story — we learn also that he had quit taking some medication that someone thought he should be taking — but in any case the Recession extends beyond particular male grievances and the hatred directed at males, especially white males, by those who engineer the dominant anticulture. It even extends beyond all the new physical and psychological disorders that we are told are burning like wildfire through America's young people, and especially young males, despite the highly touted marvels of modern medicine.

The Recession is profounder than all of that. It encompasses the fatal fact that males are no longer taught to be proper males, as our civilization once understood proper maleness.

The campus shooters who have allowed themselves to be sucked into evil, violent madness may not think of their act in just these terms, but we can hardly expect highly improper young men to go off stage properly. Or quietly. [Nicholas Strakon] (February 2008) 

Dystopia: the final frontier. The War Ministry says it will try to blast apart its falling spy satellite before it re-enters the atmosphere. The Pentagon purports to fear that the thing won't break up sufficiently on its own and will kill people when its toxic fuel hits the ground.

You've got to hand it to government. It seems to have an almost fairytale power to make bad things happen. It can make freedoms fall and economies fall; in its wars it can, of course, make innocent civilians fall into death or desolation. With enough help from its victims, it can make many millions of people fall into ignorance and delusion, and whole cultures and races fall into dissolution.

Now we see that Chicken Little's canard is made real, and government can even make the sky fall. [Nicholas Strakon] (February 2008) 

If Hillary Clinton becomes president, she will have achieved what no wife has ever achieved before. Not just one man, but the whole damn country is going to be hen-pecked. [Ronn Neff] (February 2008) 

More triumphs of Duh-MOCK-risy. On Super Tuesday, MSNBC reported that "hundreds" of voters in Virginia were enraged when they showed up at polling places only to find them closed. And authorities in Florida received "hundreds" of calls from would-be voters asking where the polling places were.

Virginia holds its primary next Tuesday. Florida held its primary a week ago Tuesday.

One wonders whether the voting addicts in the Old Dominion will be able to hang in there until the 12th, without someone to swab out their throat so they don't strangle on their own spit.

Meanwhile, on the evening of Super Tuesday, NBC's Jay Leno aired a Jaywalking episode from Universal City in which he displayed photos of the leading presidential candidates to various young and youngish folk passing by. None of them could identify any of the photos — not even the one of Hillary Clinton — except for one Negro gent who was able to come up with "Obama" when shown the Imam's image. He thought the candidate's first name might be Bill. (February 2008) 

Fill 'er up with doublethink. During George W. Bush's meanderings among the Mohammedans earlier this month, I was struck by a pair of news stories that were broadcast in tandem.

The first story was bad news. You could tell by the dour tone affected by the newsreader. It told us that Bush had asked the Saudi King to produce more oil so that the price would come down. Bush complained that the high price of oil was hurting the American economy. But the King said No. So we're going to continue to pay high prices at the pump.

The next story was much more upbeat, as reflected in the newsreader's cheery tone as he told us that someone or other had proposed that gasoline taxes be increased. That was good because it would mean that people would use less polluting fossil fuels, and the money would go to repairing aging road systems and bridges.

Not once in the second story was it mentioned that increasing taxes on gasoline would make the price go up! Not once.

It reminded me of Barbara Ehrenreich's discussion of how hard the plight of the working girl is, what with the costs of getting to work and dressing for work and all, in which Ehrenreich never mentioned the bite that taxes take out of a paycheck. [Ronn Neff] (January 2008) 

No one said there'd be a war! An MSNBC anchor proposed today that many Hispanics may be reachable by the Rev. Dr. Obamarama — in his role as the antiwar candidate — because so many Hispanic families have loved ones doing the Empire's business over there in Mesopotamia. (Once again I indulge in paraphrase.) What?! Did the Authorities bring back the draft when I wasn't looking? Aren't all these Hispanic bravos volunteers?

No doubt many of the relatives who are now purported to be upset encouraged their queridos to sign up, in light of all the groovy educational and career opportunities offered by the War Machine. Well, let's hope they all have better luck — or better judgment — next time.

By the way, what are we to make of Obamarama's antiwar stance? Some of us insist that the neocon war-maniacs emit a distinct odor of Trotskyism. Picking up on that, I've decided that the Young Very-Non-Mohammedan Reverend is the American equivalent of a certain foreign notable, as he was in the early part of his reign: Joe Stalin. You know — "Socialism in One Country"? [Nicholas Strakon] (January 2008) 


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