Saturday, April 15, 2017

Is Your Child or Grandchild a Budding Fascist?

It is fairly well known that, today, colleges and universities are among the least free places in our country. Left-wing professors teach left-wing ideology, and even express their hatred for any group with whom they disagree - conservatives, Republicans, supporters of Israel, supporters of the police, and so on. The result is a "no tolerance" policy at these schools, meaning no tolerance for contrary viewpoints.

One professor at Fresno State University, Lars Maischak, had this to say on Twitter: "To save American democracy, Trump must hang...the sooner and the higher, the better." Here is some more by this professor: "You fascist Trump-voting white trash scum can wallow in your filthy hell-holes of flyover states. Enjoy." And this: "Justice = the execution of two Republicans for each deported immigrant." He says his quotes should not be taken literally. Really? Trump must hang? Republicans should be executed? Who's the fascist here? This is sick; and worse yet - he is paid by the taxpayers of California.

Heather MacDonald is a Fellow at the Manhattan Institute, and a contributing editor to the City Journal. She was scheduled to speak at Claremont McKenna College in Claremont, California. The college is a small (1347 undergraduates) liberal arts school. Approximately 250 protesters blocked the entrance to where MacDonald was scheduled to speak on the campus. Ms. MacDonald wrote a book entitled "The War on Cops: How the New Attack on Law and Order Makes Everyone Less Safe." Not only did these protesters not want to hear Ms. MacDonald speak (which is their right), they did not believe anyone else should be able to hear her (not their right). She said people were chanting "black lives matter," and she was called a "white supremacist." She also heard this chant: "(Expletive) the police, KKK."

The President of the college defended the lack of police action this way: "Based on the judgment of the Claremont Police Department, we jointly concluded that any forced interventions or arrests would have created unsafe conditions for students, faculty, staff, and guests." This is liberal mentality at its worst, yet we have seen it time and again. When those in authority refuse to act against misbehavior, it sends a signal (in this case, to students everywhere) that others can also get away with inappropriate and even violent behavior. The same lack of police action was seen when Milo Yiannopoulos was scheduled to speak at UC Berkeley. There, protesters smashed store windows and an ATM, and set a small fire. This inaction by college administrators and campus police, although on a smaller scale, is no different than Obama's inaction against tyrants during his eight years as President. Obama's failure to take action against Syria for using chemical weapons, after drawing a red line, only encouraged Assad to believe that he could get away with using chemical weapons again. And he did. College students get the same message - nothing will happen to them, even with violent protests.

Middlebury College is a small school (2526 undergraduates) in Vermont. Charles Murray, a Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, was scheduled to speak at Middlebury. He was being hosted by Professor Allison Stanger. In yet another example left-wing intolerance/fascism, Mr. Murray was prevented from speaking as planned - by a mob of screaming students. He and Professor Stanger were to have had what was to be a public discussion; instead the discussion had to be moved to a different location and then broadcast online. Afterwards, Murray and Stanger left to go to dinner together, along with the college's VP for Communications. According to Murray: "protesters surrounded the car, banging on the sides and the windows and rocking the car, climbing onto the hood."

Professor Stanger got it partly right. Clearly, she believes in the right of free speech - for the speaker and for those who wish to hear. However, like many on the left she does not understand the concept of having consequences for one's actions. Stanger: "We have got to do better by those who feel and are marginalized...especially when our current President is blind to the evils he has unleashed." However the students "feel" does not excuse their misconduct. I am reminded of a scene from an old Woody Allen movie. In a flashback to his childhood, his mother is seen complaining to his father that their black maid is stealing from them. The father replies, more or less to this effect: "She's entitled to steal from us, she's black."

It is what the left does - they make victims of the perpetrators. This same mentality explains how after 9/11 the media - the left-wing media - made Muslims, the perpetrators of 9/11, out to be the victims. And they have done so ever since. Obama looked at the bad actors in the world as being victims of US power, so he did nothing. So they obliged by carrying out more bad acts. College and University administrators have decided to do nothing in the face of illegal conduct by their students. Predictably, we can expect such bad behavior to continue and even increase.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

The LA Times vs. Trump

This past week, the Los Angeles Times ran daily and lengthy editorials outlining their numerous problems with President Trump. The April 4 editorial was entitled "Why the president lies." The Times claims that Trump has an "apparent disregard for fact so profound as to suggest that he may not see much practical distinction between lies, if he believes they serve him, and the truth." Regular readers of this blog may recall the countless times I have discussed how for the left (people like Obama, Reid and Pelosi) the truth is not a value. Rather, their approach to politics is that the ends justify the means. If lying works, they lie. Of course, when Obama, Reid and Pelosi were in charge, the Times was completely unaware of the concept that for some the ends justify the means. Now that Trump, a Republican, is in charge, they've awakened to the idea that politicians may lie.

My favorite example of the Dems using the approach of the ends justify the means is a quote from Harry Reid. When Romney was running against Obama, then Senate Majority leader Reid spoke on the Senate floor and accused Romney of not paying any federal income tax. It was a total lie, of course. A number of years later, a reporter asked Reid if he wanted to apologize for that comment about Romney. In reply, Reid said this: "Well, he (Romney) didn't win, did he?" A perfect example of Reid demonstrating no moral qualms about the lie, because maybe that lie helped reelect Obama. The ends justify the means.

Another lie, given little attention by the mainstream media, was the claim that a movie/video trailer was responsible for the assault on our consulate in Benghazi. Obama and Clinton told that lie. It was only a couple of months before the 2012 election, and the spin from Obama was that bin Laden was dead, and terrorism was defeated. So, it was felt that the true story would conflict with that spin. And let's not forget that paragon of honesty, Susan Rice, who went on five Sunday talk shows to repeat the lie about the movie trailer. (Which, although unrelated, certainly makes me want to believe everything she now says about the unmasking and leaking of names of Trump campaign officials.)

The April 5 editorial was entitled "His Authoritarian Vision." The Times is shocked by the fact that Trump has called for "agency budgets to be chopped by up to 30%." Imagine, a President who does not want to see the federal bureaucracy, along with the federal debt, continue to grow exponentially. And, shockingly, Trump has "appointed a string of Cabinet secretaries who were hostile to much of their agencies' missions and the laws they're responsible for enforcing." Would that be like Obama failing to enforce the immigration laws he was responsible for enforcing? Or, ignoring those parts of the Affordable Care Act that he decided should not be enforced before his campaign for reelection, lest it negatively affect the vote for him.

The April 6 editorial was entitled "The War on Journalism." The Times takes great offense at Trump referring to "fake news," and referring to journalists as the "enemies of the people." Calling journalists the "enemies of the people" is not something he should have said. Yes, reporters are almost always going to be biased against Republicans. And when Trump calls out specific instances of bias, I have no problem with it. But the words of Trump apparently upset the Times far more than the actions of Obama. The Times apparently realized how it would look if they completely ignored the ways Obama mistreated the press, and therefore noted: "President Obama's press operation tried to exclude Fox News reporters from interviews, blocked many officials from talking to journalists and, most troubling, prosecuted more national security whistle-blowers and leakers than all previous presidents combined."

Let's not forget the words of Obama and his top advisers early on, as they all appeared on mainstream and cable news channels, asserting that Fox News was not a real news organization. Or how Obama had Fox News reporter James Rosen surveilled - watching his comings and goings, and collecting his emails and phone records. Or how the Obama Administration seized telephone records of AP reporters and editors. No, for the Times it's all about some of the words Trump has said; words Trump says because he actually fights back, instead of taking the abuse - like this series by the Times.

The Californians

"The Californians" was a recurring segment on Saturday Night Live, depicting the shallowness of people in California. Of course, it was an exaggeration, and the real emphasis should have been on the left-wing kooky ideas generated by the state. With the state being overwhelmingly Democratic, not surprisingly, it has elected an overwhelmingly Democratic legislature. What follows are some of the wacky proposals that may be enacted into law by the far left state.

While various cities within the state have declared themselves to be sanctuary cities, there is now a proposal to make the entire state a sanctuary state. SB 54 has already passed the state Senate by a vote of 27-12. A request by ICE to local or state law enforcement, asking that they detain people in custody, can be ignored. There are exceptions permitting local law enforcement to notify ICE before convicted or violent felons are released. According to Republican Jeff Stone, Republican State Senator, the bill does not require notification to ICE when human traffickers, child abusers or others about to be released - absent a court order. Said Stone: "How many more Kate Steinle's do we need?" Steinle was shot and killed by an illegal alien in 2015. California is estimated to have 25% of the country's illegal aliens. If the bill is enacted into law we can expect that percentage to grow.

Here's a good one. A bill was proposed in the State Assembly to deal with the issue of "fake news." The bill would make it unlawful to "knowingly and willingly make, publish or circulate on an Internet web site, or cause to be made, published, or circulated in any writing posted on an Internet web site, a false or deceptive statement designed to influence the vote on either of the following: (a) Any issue submitted to voters at an election, (b) Any candidate for election to public office." The measure is obviously unconstitutional. It does not apply to the print media, as apparently even the drafters must have suspected that the measure was of questionable constitutionality. They may have overlooked the fact that virtually all mainstream newspapers also operate online. But the real issue is this - just who gets to decide what is "false or deceptive" under the law? A government bureaucrat? Would they categorize any of the posts in this blog as being "false or deceptive?" Of course, there would be no chance that only right-wing sites would be targeted, right? Thankfully, this measure has apparently been tabled.

Perhaps my "favorite" of the many ridiculous proposals to come out of the California State Legislature is one reported in the March 16, 2017 Wall Street Journal. This proposal would exempt teachers in California from paying any state income tax, if they have been teaching for five years or more. The first problem with this proposal is the sheer arrogance of legislators not being the least bit embarrassed by the enormity of their corruption. This would be yet another example of the teachers' unions, contributing millions to Democratic coffers, then being rewarded by those same Democrats in Sacramento, with taxpayer money. Let's be honest, if one segment of society, teachers, pays zero income tax, everybody else will have to make up the difference.

Here's another problem. If teachers get this tax break, imagine what those who risk their lives for the public - the police, firefighters and corrections officers - will have to say. The argument is simple, if anyone deserves such relief from paying taxes, they do. The next argument will be from the rest of the state and local government employees. And why not? All the public employee unions overwhelmingly contribute to Democrats, barely at all to Republicans. So, why shouldn't the corrupt Democrats reward them as well? Does everybody understand why the ability of public employees to unionize and contribute to elected officials is contrary to the interests of the rest of the people in the state?

Lastly, there is a proposal by certain groups to have California secede from the United States. Maybe not such a bad idea. The Californians could go in their own crazy direction. The rest of the country would benefit greatly. The USA would have millions of fewer Democrats. California's 55 electoral college votes would disappear, instead of automatically going to any Democratic Presidential candidate. Those 55 electoral votes give Democrats 20% of the total needed to win, and the Democrats do not even need to campaign here. They only come to raise money. The only downside is for those of us who are conservative. Many of us would probably decide to leave and move to a different state. Still, it might be a small price to pay...