President Trump Marches for Life

I wrote a fairly long article this morning for On the Pilgrim Road which will come up at 10 this morning central time, I hope you’ll pop over and read it.

I built it around the speech that President Trump gave at the March for Life last Friday, which moved me. I do want to share that speech here, as well.

It’s so nice to have a president who understands the value of every life, isn’t it?

A New Versailles

From Sgt Mom at Chicago Boyz.

My daughter actually suggested this line of thought; that the current ruling class (or those who think themselves to be so) in the United States are perilously akin to the French nobility – those who were termed the ancient regime, of pre-revolutionary France. The ruling class were gathered together deliberately at Versailles, where all was all as far as the nobles and ruling class were concerned for at least a hundred years.

There, amid the squalid splendors of Versailles, they were gathered together, under the eye of the King, to frivol their lives away, distracted by spectacles and the vicious grasp for and fall from power within a very small realm. Only instead of a vast palace, outbuildings, gardens and minor palaces, our ruling class disports in a slightly larger venue, that of Washington, DC and the surrounding suburbs.

But the airs and graces, the privilege and entitlements, the mind-set of a ruling and a ruled class is plain to see. There is ‘us, the noble and entitled to rule’ and ‘all those grubby, smelly, Walmart-shopping peasants’ out there, beyond the Beltway and the boardrooms, beneath the notice or consideration of the grandees … except when our presence is required, say when there is an election, a war, there are taxes to be paid, or whenever one of the highest ruling nobles need a suitable (and racially/sexually diverse) background crowd for a photo op.

Keep reading (and do not skip the comments, which are excellent).

This is pretty much what we see, isn’t it? As Tucker Carlson says A Ship of Fools, cavorting on deck while ignoring the approaching rocks on the lee shore. It’s the classic vision of an out of touch bubble. Is there a person west of the Hudson and east of Sacramento that really thinks it a good idea to impeach this president? I certainly doubt it, although there may be a few who think they will personally benefit. And you know, they might in the short term. But thy won’t when the whole thing blows up.

Which it will, as anyone who actually paid attention to the whirlwind that Governor Blackface unleashed in Richmond last week. Kipling come to life.

Their voices were even and low.
Their eyes were level and straight.
There was neither sign nor show
When the Saxon began to hate.

When you get that sort of response from Americans, especially Americans with jobs and families, obviously enough to even scare the brownshirts of Antifa away, one would be wise to rethink one’s program. But the Dims charge on, full speed ahead. The rocks are there, and the shoal waters no longer completely cover them. There is a reckoning approaching, it is too soon whether it will be at the ballot box, and perhaps the courts, or whether it will be the fourth of the cousin’s wars. If it is, I think it may be the worst of all that bloody sequence.

Sgt Mom ends admirably…

And that was when things got … interesting. For a certain value of interesting.

 

It was not suddently bred.
It will not swiftly abate.
Through the chilled years ahead,
When Time shall count from the date
That the Saxon began to hate.

Richmond and Press Bias

So, the Virginia 2d amendment rally was entirely peaceful. No real surprise to anyone but the media. As the Babylon Bee says:

Somber members of the press offered their thoughts and prayers that someone would start some violence at the gun rights rally in Virginia today.

Reporters expressed their grief and condolences as the violence they hyped has so far failed to materialize.

“Nobody has so much as fired a shot. This is an unbelievable tragedy,” said one teary-eyed MSNBC reporter, clearly caught up in the anguish of the moment.

John Hinderaker at PowerLine adds:

Antifa threatened to show up at the rally, and likely would have created violence if it had done so. But for some reason, the group’s leaders changed their minds. Maybe they focused on the fact that the 2x4s, pipes and baseball bats with which they are used to beating up innocent bystanders might not fare so well in this crowd. One young guy who looked suspiciously like a leftist advocated jumping the fence and killing people. The genuine demonstrators denounced him as an “infiltrator”–which I suspect he was–and told him to “get the f*** out.”

No surprise at all in any of that. How did we ever survive without the Babylon Bee though? In a related matter…


David Weinberger at The Federalist has some thought on why the media can not be unbiased. Let’s look.

Americans generally agree that news media should be “objective” and “report the facts.” But as I recently explained, there is no such thing as merely reporting “the facts.”

Consider a simple example. Imagine a drunk driver kills someone. Which facts are relevant to report? Does it matter where the accident occurred? How about the identities of the people involved? Do their backgrounds matter? What about where the driver was coming from and where he was going? Is race important? Should the media report anything about their families’ reactions to the incident?

Ought the details of the vehicle be reported? What if it is later revealed that the brakes were faulty? Does it matter whether the driver is a citizen? What if he is an illegal immigrant? Are there then possible implications for public policy, and if there are, ought they be reported? Furthermore, how much time should news media devote to this matter — a 10-minute news segment, an hour, or possibly even a 24-hour news cycle or more?

Facts alone cannot answer these questions. Discerning which facts to report requires judgment, and judgment requires morality. As the late Leo Strauss observed, “We cannot observe facts without selecting facts, and we must therefore have principles guiding our selection.” Put simply, the notion that facts are completely severable from values — an idea known as the “fact-value distinction” — is untenable, and no news outlet should pretend otherwise.

Lest this be misunderstood, the news media do bear a responsibility to report the facts they select as accurately as possible, but facts do not select themselves. No outlet is therefore free from ideology. Rather than feign objectivity, it would be more responsible for news outlets to drop the pretense altogether and instead invite the best opposing thinkers to debate the issues of the day. In other words, “diversity of ideas,” not “report the facts,” is a more sensible goal for news media.

Keep reading at the link above.

He makes excellent points here, no matter how we try, we cannot be unbiased, the best we can do is admit our bias and try to read around a subject getting several viewpoints. All stories have at least two sides, after all, and most have many more – the world isn’t black and white but a technicolor extravaganza.

You want an example? I looked at probably 20 (or more stories) in the last 24 hours before I selected these two, the very selection, and my comments on them reflect my biases. So does everything else you’ll read today and in the future. Your judgment and discernment are called for to cut through the chaff and find the grain.

It’s actually always been that way, we just had this spell where we thought we could depend on the organized media to do the job for us. We can’t and we never could, we just got lazy. This is a country where people are required to think for themselves, mob tactics are antithetical to self rule.

Aiding and Abetting Gang Rape, the British Police

Even for an American, Bruce Bawer, in FrontPage Magazine, here is quite outspoken. Good! It’s overdue. And note that it is hard for a Briton to do since their free speech rights have been so eroded.

It started in Rotherham, South Yorkshire, where the scandal made headlines in 2012, and where about 1500 victims have since been identified. Then came Rochdale, in Greater Manchester. There followed revelations from Lancashire, Birmingham, Surrey, Leeds, Bradford, and Gloucestershire, with the number of victims in each of these areas numbering in the hundreds or more.

Now an inquiry in Manchester proper has shown that – surprise! – that city isn’t immune to the predations of grooming gangs, either.

Commissioned by Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham, the inquiry found that at least 57 girls, many of whom lived in government-run children’s care homes, “were raped and abused by up to 100 members of a Manchester grooming gang sixteen years ago – but despite police and social workers knowing what was happening they weren’t stopped.” The girls, wrote Jennifer Williams in the Manchester Evening News on January 14, “were hooked on drugs, groomed, raped and emotionally broken.” Much of this, moreover, went on “‘in plain sight’ of officials”; indeed, “Greater Manchester Police dropped an operation that identified up to 97 potential suspects,” at least eight of whom went on to commit more assaults, and in August 2018, the city’s Chief Constable “refused to reopen the dropped operation.” At least one of the rape victims, Victoria Agoglia, who “had repeatedly told social workers she was being injected with drugs and raped,” was given no help whatsoever, and ended up dying in 2003, at the age of fifteen, of a heroin overdose, with the then coroner, Simon Nelson, concluding (in the face of massive evidence to the contrary) that “her death could not have been foreseen by the authorities,” and with records showing that Agoglia had, at age 13, been dismissed by social workers as a prostitute.

And of course the reason why those authorities did nothing about the abuse of any of these girls was that virtually all of the perpetrators were Pakistani Muslims – or, in the parlance of the British media, “Asians” – and the cops, social workers, child-services officials, politicians, and others were scared of offending the Muslim community. The man responsible for Agoglia’s death, one Mohammed Yaqoob, was cleared of manslaughter charges. Meanwhile, the Telegraph reported that cops looking into the Pakistani Muslim grooming gangs were told by their superiors – who were driven by “fears over race relations,” concern about “sensitive community issues,” and a reluctance to amp up “community tensions” – to leave the Pakistanis alone and instead find and arrest rapists of “other ethnicities.” And they obeyed.

The story is the same all over Britain. The authorities are afraid of the Muslims, and will not investigate, let alone prosecute them. They like to call it ‘political correctness’ but it’s not. What it is is craven cowardice, perpetrated by the police and the prosecutors, and allowing the destruction of hundreds (maybe thousands) of working class British girls and women. And it is not what American police call ‘going fetal’ when you know that the leadership and politicians are out to get the police, like in Chicago and Baltimore. It’s worse, much worse, it the willing acquiescence of the rank and file to subvert the course of justice lead by corrupt police leaders and politicians. I can’t think of anything more despicable. Except maybe their willingness to prosecute (and persecute) anyone who criticizes their treason.

Maggie Oliver, a former Manchester detective who doggedly led that investigation, reacted to the inquiry’s findings by directing a justifiably furious j’accuse at “the people at the top of the police and at social services.” She added: “The chief constable, assistant chief constables, head of social services, the people who knew the facts, who knew the truth and they chose to bury the truth. That, in my opinion, is unforgivable.” And she asked: “why are those people not facing charges of misconduct in a public office? Where is the accountability? They should be put in front of a court of law.”

Indeed. And keep in mind that, like their counterparts across Britain, the Manchester police, while refusing to save children from rapists belonging to a protected minority group, have been zealous in their harassment of citizens who have dared to speak out in criticism of that same group. In 2017, the Times reported that cops across Britain were arresting an average of nine people a day “for posting allegedly offensive messages online” as part of a “campaign to combat social media hate speech”; in addition, over 3,300 people had been “detained and questioned” in 2016 for such offenses. As British journalist Brendan O’Neill noted in Reason in 2018, “This birthplace of John Stuart Mill, this nation that gave the world John Milton and his Areopagitica, still one of the greatest cries for the ‘liberty to utter,’ is now at the forefront of shutting speech down.” Yes, they’re not just going after critics of Islam; they’re also prosecuting people for posting rap lyrics online and for filming dogs making Nazi salutes. But this nefarious new Thought Police activity and the systematic refusal of police to arrest Muslim rapists share an identical motive – a pusillanimous terror of offending Muslims.

Read it all at the link above. Is it fixable? Sure anything man can make, man can unmake or fix. What matters is the will and leadership to do so. That I see nowhere on the horizon, and without it, the Britain that we have known that built the modern world, and all in it, including the United States, is dead and moldering in its open grave.

Project Veritas in Iowa

I don’t usually follow Project Veritas all that closely. Not because I don’t think they do useful work, I do but because you can’t follow everything and plenty of others do. But this is different. This is at least part of the second tape but watch. (a bit NSFW by the way.)

John Hinderaker at PowerLine explains:

He promises that Milwaukee will “burn” if Sanders doesn’t get the Democratic nomination, and vows to attack police officers. He endorses the Soviet Gulag in particular, and Communist re-education camps in general. He talks about “revolution” and suggests that anyone who opposes the Bernie Sanders revolution will be shot. He comes out against free speech. Jurek advocates sentencing billionaires to hard labor “breaking rocks” and approves of Antifa. His language is vulgar and threats of violence are interspersed through his conversation.

Democrats are already in damage control mode on Twitter. You can see the Project Veritas videos as well as some of the Democrats’ responses on O’Keefe’s Twitter feed. Democrats describe Jurek as a volunteer, which he isn’t. He is a paid staffer in Iowa (or was until today). He was described as a “top-tier organizer” by Sanders’ senior campaign officials in Iowa, who have now closed down their social media accounts.

Funny how often ‘damage control mode’ means lying like a rug because one got caught, isn’t it?

Meanwhile, there is one thing we can say for sure. To paraphrase John Lennon, Kyle Jurek may be a violent Communist dreamer, but he’s not the only one. James Hodgkinson, another Bernie Bro, has already done some of the worst things that Jurek threatens. The liberal press has tried to bury the fact that Hodgkinson, a Sanders volunteer and hard-core labor unionist, shot up a group of Republican Congressmen, and would have succeeded in murdering the House Majority Whip, but for the miracles of modern medicine.

It’s a very valid point. Does Sanders believe this stuff as well? I don’t know. But if a significant portion of his followers and employees do, does that matter very much? They seem to have found a home.

That is not good news for America, any more than Corbyn was for Britain. Britain dealt pretty decisively with the threat. We need to as well. As John asks…

But maybe it is time to ask: how radical are Bernie Sanders and his supporters, anyway?

Sir Robert Scruton

RICH’S MONDAY MORNING VIEW

First a personal note, it is good to see ‘The Unit’ liking posts, here again, he has been missed since the first of the year. I look forward to his resumption of commenting. 🙂

Sir Roger Scruton died of cancer over the weekend, at home in England surrounded by his family. As Steven Hayward says on PowerLine:

Sir Roger deserves to be considered the greatest conservative thinker and writer of the last generation—full stop—certainly the most prolific and wide-ranging since G.K. Chesterton, having published more than 50 books and countless articles.

And yet he’s very hard for me, at least, to write about. I agreed with him almost always, but what he said was in a way so simple, so commonsensical, that it seemed to hardly need saying, and yet it did, and he always said it well, with great humor. Steven again.

Although Scruton can throw down with the deepest and most complex of modern philosophers such as Wittgenstein, when it came to conservatism he was not a dense theorist or systematizer. To the contrary, he liked to say that conservatism should begin with love—the things we love, the places we love, and the institutions we ought to love, but often don’t, because of the imperfections in all things human. In the introduction to his book The Meaning of Conservatism, Scruton writes that “Conservatism may rarely announce itself in maxims, formulae, or aims. Its essence is inarticulate, and its expression, when compelled, skeptical.”

Why “inarticulate”?  Because, as he explains elsewhere, the liberal has the easy job in the modern world. The liberal points at the imperfections and defects of existing institutions or the existing social order, strikes a pose of indignation, and huffs that surely something better is required, usually with the attitude that the something better is simply a matter of will. The conservative faces the tougher challenge of understanding and explaining the often subtle reasons why existing institutions, no matter how imperfect, work better than speculative alternatives.

This is true, and pretty obvious, really. It’s always easier to criticize and show what’s wrong, even if one sticks to the truth, which these days is not a given. It is always much harder to see why the time-honored system works although imperfectly, better than any of the simplistic proposed replacements.

Kevin Donnelly in the Spectator Australia has some thoughts as well.

In opposition to the nanny state and big government much like Edmund Burke’s vision of little platoons, Scruton in his book Conservatism stresses the value of “the networks of familiarity and trust on which a community depends for its longevity”.   Scruton also suggests ordinary people are conservative by nature; something not acknowledged by society’s intellectual elites.

An intellectual class that sees itself as “gifted with superior insight and intellect and therefore inevitably critical of whatever it is that ordinary people do by way of surviving.  An intellectual class that does not identify with the way of life around it”.

Donald Trump’s election as President of the United States by Hilary Clinton’s “basket of deplorables”, Scott Morrison’s ability to win the support of the “quiet Australians” and Boris Johnson’s success attracting traditional Labor voters are proof of Scruton’s thesis.

He’s correct and if they do their jobs well, the continued strength of the Anglosphere will be his greatest memorial.

Scruton, like the poet T S Eliot and the philosopher Michael Oakeshott. believed the purpose of education is to initiate succeeding generations into what Matthew Arnold described as “the best that has been thought and said”. 

For Scruton what mattered most “is the spiritual and moral health of a community” and it’s understandable why he abhorred the destructive impact of cultural-left theory on the academy especially the impact of postmodernism and deconstructionism on music, art, literature and history.

When discussing the threats to modern conservatism Scruton identifies one of its chief enemies as political correctness and “its restraint on freedom of expression and its emphasis in everything on Western guilt”.

A very great man of towering intellect and peripatetic interests. His loss will be keenly felt.

Godspeed, Sir Roger.

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