Sunday Funnies: Late but Hating Hate

Well, I refused to give up an hours sleep last night, so I’m rather late this morning, since they changed the clocks anyway. But a busy week.

In other news: Turkeys vote for Christmas

Or not replacing it!

 

And, of course, and still more double trouble

 

The Eagle and the Dragon

David Runciman wants you to know that the 21st Century will be China’s just as the 20th was America’s. Isn’t that special! Maybe, but frankly, I doubt it. So does Steven W. Mosher, who writes about that in American Greatness.

Let’s take a look.

America’s best days are behind it, says David Runciman, in his book, How Democracy Ends.

Runciman sounds for all the world like a big “D” Democrat—a member of the political party that, at least since the time of Jimmy Carter, has specialized in “malaise.” The Democrat “two-step” goes like this. First, they cause “malaise” by hamstringing the economy, then they highlight it as an excuse to enact government programs that make even more people dependent upon the welfare state they control.

Donald Trump, on the other hand, specializes in “robust good health.” His booming optimism is reminiscent of Teddy Roosevelt’s. You can almost imagine him charging up San Juan Hill. How invigorating and refreshing to see energy, rather than excuses, in the Oval Office.

Like Roosevelt and Reagan, Trump believes that America’s best days are ahead of it.

Mosher goes on to note that it is China that has started to decline since the American people decided to turn our back on despair and dependency by electing Trump. He says, and I agree, it might have been true if we had elected Clinton.

But we didn’t. We elected Trump, a proven fighter who fights to win and is already doing so, as we see China and the EU start to slip into recession. Mind you, trade is not a strictly a win-lose game. Done properly it is a win-win thing. But the US has been playing a sucker’s bet since 1945, first intended to help the world to recover, and then out of habit until it was starting to really hurt America. To every thing, there is a time, wrote the Teacher, and the time to hurt ourselves to help others is no more.

While the Brits may not have caught on to the fact that America’s best days are ahead of it, the Democrats have. Witness the increasingly panicky calls for impeachment.

When their chief initiative is to carry out a political coup to remove their political opponent from office they are truly out of ideas.

Read his article (linked above) for his observations on China. I agree, from what I see. But he’s an expert, I’m not, but I do have eyes.

Business Insider is also reporting on troubles in China.

According to a paper published in January by Hurun Report, a Shanghai-based research firm, just over one-third of the superrich Chinese citizens in a survey described themselves as “very confident” about the future of the Chinese economy.

On the surface, that seems like a solid number, but it is startling when compared with the same survey two years ago, which showed that nearly two-thirds were very confident in China’s economic future. It is also the lowest number in the 15 years the survey has been produced, Hurun said.

The same survey from Hurun also found that the number of wealthy Chinese who had “no confidence at all” in China’s economic future had doubled from last year’s survey to 14%.

Hurun’s survey of 465 superrich Chinese citizens also found that almost half were considering emigrating or had already made moves to emigrate from China.

Heh! Funny how that happens when you feel you know better than your people. Here it is, more people saying the US will win again.

Why?

You know why!

Because Hillary will never be President.

Always amazing what freedom, politically, and in markets can do.

Green New Dream and Brexit: the Musical

Well, I think we’ll do a few more videos today.

The Clear Energy Alliance has a series of videos up explaining just how incredibly stupid Occasional Cortex’s (or AOC, if you insist) Green New Deal is.

I’ll post a couple of the series, but more at the link.

and

They are completely right, of course. This whole plan is substandard for college freshmen over a football weekend. But that is fairly standard for Congress.

Or Parliament for that matter, Brexit the Musical is available. It’s not quite up to the standard of Hamilton, but if the F bomb in a posh British accent doesn’t overly bother you, it’s pretty good. But perhaps a bit NSFW

Hat tip to PowerLine for both.

75 Years: The Mighty Eighth and American Exceptionalism

Something we don’t talk about too much is that while almost any nation will defend itself, one of the ways that America is exceptional is our willingness to defend freedom for other people as well as ourselves. This has been quite evident in the last century. It was brought to my attention by this from Vassar Bushmills at Unified Patriots 

[…]

    Why is it conservatives never come right out and say that the willingness of American men and women to die for the cause of not just liberty, but other men’s liberty, is a defining characteristic of American spirit? I know Ron Paul doesn’t agree, nor do Libertarians, for that matter.

But I can say this…go tell Putin’s new generation of America-haters that those 250,000 white crosses in Europe are shoulders they stand on as well. While Europe bears even more Russian graves than American, no slander ever accused any Russian of dying for the liberty of the French. But the fact that Americans have, and have shown in recent history they are still willing to ensures that none of their generation will ever die trying to repeat what their forbears did so well.

For that you owe America, not Putin, moi priyatyel.

And because of that willingness to die for other’s freedom, we now have the amazing sight of Europe, for most of us, our homelands, becoming not proud countries as before, but willing colonists, no longer willing to stand on their own feet, for all their whingeing, they are simply a protectorate of the United States. All those famous names, with only a few exceptions like Britain and Poland, have sold their sovereignty to us, and increasingly to Brussels. Sad, but the truth.

Vassar is absolutely correct, in neither 1917 nor 1942 was there any essential American national interest in the European war. In fact, it’s is quite possible that if we hadn’t stood with China in the 1930s, Japan might not have attacked us at all, we probably would have lost the Philippines, which if I recall correctly, were scheduled for independence on 4 July 1942 anyway, but, not a lot else.

In other words, we made it our business. And when Americans do business, we damned well do business. Göring’s Luftwaffe had a propensity to bomb civilians, and there’s an old rule about that, it’s called

Dresden in 1945

Dresden in 1945

Sow the Wind: Reap the Whirlwind

and on 13 February 1945, it came true as the US 8th Army Air Force in combination with the RAF Bomber Command burned down (in the first man-made firestorm) the city of Dresden. It caused far more casualties than Hiroshima, by the way.

But that’s toward the end of the story, 75 years ago today, that same Air Force, the Mighty Eighth mounted the first of a series of strikes which have become known as Big Week. The targets included:  LeipzigBrunswickGothaRegensburgSchweinfurtAugsburgStuttgart and Steyr but, the real target was the Luftwaffe, all of these cities were crucial in aircraft production.

The time would come, on 4 June 1944 when General Eisenhower would be able to tell the forces assembled for Overlord that “if you see aircraft, they will be ours” and it was nearly true, anywhere in Europe that summer.

But it was expensive, many of those crosses that Vladimir spoke of above are here, in Cambridge, England. Most of these men were in the Mighty Eighth. And these were only the ones that made it back to base, many others were in those aircraft that blew up, or crashed, or just plain never got home. In fact 75 years ago today, we lost sixty aircraft, that is 600 hundred men, and many more were wounded and killed in aircraft that came home. To the point that 8th AAF took higher casualties than any other like size unit in Europe. And higher in World War II than the whole United States Marine Corp.

Cambridge American Military Cemetery, England

And so, it went until the unconditional surrender of Germany and Japan in 1945.

And here is a clip from one of my all-time top five favorite movies Twelve O’Clock High, that speaks to what it took.

Little Easton St. Mary’s Church, Essex England

And interestingly, this story was supposedly based on the 100th Bombardment Group H, which came to be known as “The Bloody Hundredth” because of its losses. If you happen to be around Thorpe Abbotts in Norfolk, England, you will find that their control tower and some other buildings are now a museum dedicated to the 100th. This is how we and the British really established that special relationship that the politicians like to talk about, but it has much more to do with our peoples than our governments. For more about how the English remember the 8th USAAF go to The Eighth in the East.

But, you know the story doesn’t end on VE and VJ day does it. On VJ day America had 14,000,000 men in uniform, a navy far stronger than the rest of the world combined, an incomparable strategic bombing force, not to mention the world’s only atomic bomb, and over half of world domestic product. Never before or since has one country so dominated the world as on that September afternoon on the deck of the USS Missouri.

So what did America do?

It demobilized just as fast as it could, started making civilian goods and loaning giving money to Europe and Japan to rebuild their industries to be far more modern than American ones. It’s what we do.

But think about this, if we had been the imperialists that everybody wants to call us today, well who exactly was going to stop us in 1945. The British, who came out of the war probably second best were exhausted, and everybody else was flat on their back, except maybe the Russians, and the German army was more than willing for a rematch backed by the United States.

And when the Soviet Union started threatening Europe, the old names came back, for the 8th United States Air Force is still here, still the premier strategic bombing (and now missile) force in the world, even now, after the defeat of communism, still on guard.

But the time is coming when the world is going to have to take care of itself when we have to concentrate on getting our own house in order, and that time may be coming soon. So if you’re one of those NATO countries that we’ve been defending for the last century, you might want to think about defending yourselves, America may not always be there to cover you.

Heed not the sighs and sermons,
Go, gallant lads, again.
Let some folk think of Germans—
We think of Pole and Dane.
March 19, 1944

 

Endings

Well, you may have heard, AOC, or as we are inclined to call her, Occasional Cortex has with some help from her friends, cost New York City that new Amazon headquarters. I’m not a fan of government subsidies to get big businesses to move in, but it is what it is. via the New York Post:

“For Amazon, the commitment to build a new headquarters requires positive, collaborative relationships with state and local elected officials who will be supportive over the long-term,” the company said.

“While polls show that 70 percent of New Yorkers support our plans and investment, a number of state and local politicians have made it clear that they oppose our presence and will not work with us to build the type of relationships that are required to go forward with the project we and many others envisioned in Long Island City.”

According to the reports I’ve seen, that’s 25, 000 jobs with an average salary of $150,000 per year (Yes, I also think it either insane or obscene, but that’s life). That works out to $3,750,000,000 lost. That’ll leave a mark on tax revenues. And it doesn’t count the other jobs, janitors, food service people, road crews, even ambitious young female bartenders. Nice job, Alexandria.


Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity is apparently dead. Science reporter Jacob Margolis told us Wednesday via PJ Media.

“She was bouncing along, doing well, until a massive dust storm engulfed all of Mars in June 2018, knocking out communications with the team on earth,” he explained. The team has not heard from Opportunity since and it is unclear exactly what happened, he said. “The last message they received was basically, ‘My battery is low and it’s getting dark.’ They hoped that the windy season would clear dust off the solar panels (if that was the problem). “

Since then they’ve been pinging her “again and again, every way they knew,” to no avail. “Winter is coming,” said Margolis. “The windy season, which runs from November – January has come to an end, ” which is bad news for the rover because it will be dark and temps could dip to -100 C. The only way she has to keep warm is to move around, so “If components haven’t broken already, the extreme cold will likely serve the final blow…. If the solar panels do start to sip energy from the sun and feed it to the battery, Oppy’s emergency heaters will kick in and it’ll spend that energy warming its little robot heart, which contains its most important components.”

“We have made every reasonable engineering effort to try to recover Opportunity and have determined that the likelihood of receiving a signal is far too low to continue recovery efforts,” said John Callas, manager of the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) project at JPL on Wednesday afternoon.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine officially declared Opportunity dead in a 2 p.m. EST tweet:

Someday mankind will walk on Mars, and some of the credit will go to #Oppy and the brilliant Americans who designed, built, and operated the rover. Bravo Zulu, guys and girls.

And there a lesson there, Oppy was American technology, designed and built by Americans, designed to operate somewhat autonomously in a known hazardous atmosphere for 90 Martian days and travel 1100 yards. Instead:

NASA said in a statement. “In addition to exceeding its life expectancy by 60 times, the rover traveled more than 28 miles (45 kilometers) by the time it reached its most appropriate final resting spot on Mars — Perseverance Valley.”

Margolis shared what was likely Opportunity’s last photograph:

Nobody does it better!

As Dr. Tanya Harrison, one of the rocket scientists at JPL Tweeted:

.

Time to Change Models

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey testifies before the House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on Twitter’s algorithms and content monitoring on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., September 5, 2018. REUTERS/Chris Wattie – RC1D5C3E3B60

When we talk about our freedoms, the ones enshrined in the Bill of Rights are critical ones that ensure the rest, and they are all interdependent. The second does defend the rest, but so does the first, and the seventh and so on. It’s an integral whole, none of which are subject to negotiation.

That said, they do apply in law only to the government, the prohibit the government from doing certain things. In themselves, they do not prohibit private entities from doing those same things. But they hold up the ideal.

A century or so ago, a system was set up, and yes, Theodore Vail had considerable to do with it, that the US Government wouldn’t interfere with certain monopolistic practices of the Bell Companies, and in return, they would strive to supply affordable, universal service. It worked quite well for bringing central station telephone service to even the remotest part of the nation -with an agreed tweak here and there.

But the other thing about the phone company is that they simply did not care what you said on their lines. You could attempt the overthrow of the president, you could threaten to kill those attempting to overthrow the president whatever, the phone company did not care. It was (is actually) a common carrier, if you had the money for the service, it would carry the message, no questions asked.

Now the government, with due process involving some of those amendments we spoke of above might record and use your statements in a court of law, but the key phrase is due process and government. Nobody ever got disconnected by Northwestern Bell for saying something the CEO didn’t like on the phone.

So why this history lesson? Some lessons have seemingly been lost. Ashe Schow in The Daily Wire tells us:

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said in an interview last week that the company could no longer “afford to take a neutral stance anymore.”

He made this statement after being asked by podcaster Sam Harris why Twitter’s bans and suspensions always seem to “reliably land[s] on one side of the political divide.”

He pointed out that progressive feminist Megan Murphy – who is no friend to conservatives – was banned for tweeting that “Men are not women” and asking, “How are transwomen not men? What is the difference between men and transwomen?” yet unapologetic anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan is still allowed on the platform.

“I don’t believe that we can afford to take a neutral stance anymore. I don’t believe that we should optimize for neutrality,” Dorsey said immediately.

Later in the podcast, Dorsey mentioned the Murphy ban again, saying, “The case you brought up. I’m not sure what was behind that, but I certainly don’t believe it was that one tweet.” He added that most people who are punished by the platform were repeat offenders.

Dorsey, according to NewsBusters, also dodged a question about the First Amendment. Harris had asked him why Twitter couldn’t just ban actual violent speech, but allow all other forms of speech, even those many vehemently disagree with. Dorsey said Twitter’s policies follow “the spirit of” the First Amendment.

Read the rest but you get the gist of it. Twitter itself is taking sides.

US law has assumed that Twitter Facebook, Google, all the others, are like the phone company, simple carriers of information, common carriers that if you pay the fare, will carry the message. It’s a good proven model, but it is inaccurate. Dorsey just denied again that his company is a common carrier, and he’s right, it is selectively choosing messages it is willing to carry from chosen clients. That’s OK too, but it is a different model.

It’s the model of the editorial page of any newspaper, they can print what they want, supporting their opinion. It’s also the model we use here, I’m not required to be fair or balanced, this blog is basically my opinion, what news is here I try to make accurate, but no guarantees.

But there’s another factor here, Bell Tel as a common carrier has no responsibility for the messages they carry. The New York Times is responsible for every word printed on its editorial page.

And so it is time for the lawfare to begin. Doxxing people? – Twitter’s at fault, Threatening public figures? Twitter dunnit. On and on. Time to break these self-righteous protectors of snowflakes, soy boys, and other so-called people that oppose American freedom.

And you know, I suspect the world will be a better place when we have destroyed them, and their owners.

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