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Monday, April 12, 2021

The Origins Of "The Narrative"

(hat tip to Deplorable Bloggers Alliance, where Pastorius notes: The fact that this video is "Age Restricted" on Youtube proves that what he says is correct)

If only more "true believers" indoctrinated in our education system would watch the video below!  Perhaps the eyes of some would be opened — if only a little.
 

226 comments:

  1. Damn. That video is from 2012. I recommend if for nothing else than to see how much the times have changed. (actually, nothing has changed, except how we are allowed to talk about it.)

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  2. ...and where would the "narrative" be without, what Hitler called, "the Big Lie" or what Plato called, "the Noble Lie?"

    What was Hitler's "Big Lie"? That German Culture would be perfect but for the presence in their midst of "the Jew". And so what is the new and seemingly 'reactionary' "narrative". That American Culture would be perfect, but for the hidden presence of "the white racist/ supremacist". Eradicate "racism" and America will be Heaven upon Earth. Who are these evil racists? Anyone we say... You want a scapegoat? We'll give you one!

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    1. How do you make good people do bad things?

      The horror of Communism, Stalinism, is not that bad people do bad things — they always do. It’s that good people do horrible things thinking they are doing something great.

      - "Six Questions for Slavoj Žižek, [Harper's Magazine, November 11, 2011]”

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    2. "For the People!" Not the "real" people. The "mythical" ones. The victims. The one's who need OUR help.

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    3. This is what Hannah Arendt called, the "banality" of evil.

      banality
      [bəˈnalədē]
      NOUN
      the fact or condition of being banal; unoriginality.
      "there is an essential banality to the story he tells"

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  3. I gave up trying to have any sort of reasonable discussion with my niece, who is in her l;ate forties and, while very intelligent, not as intelligent as she thinks she is, and is completely blinded by "liberal" ideology.

    She constantly uses words that means something other than what she thinks they mean, or words that she simply does not know the definition of at all. She uses them because they are in quotes that sound good to her.

    She was espousing an idea one time and said that "this is not a radical idea." I cited for her the meaning of "radical" (new and different from the usual or ordinary), and said that it was radical and that that was a good thing, not a bad one. We need radical thinking, I suggested, to solve new and large problems.

    She said that was not what she meant by "radical" and I asked what she did mean by the word. She was unable to say what she meant when she used by the word, only that she was not referring to the definition I had cited.

    And she votes in our elections.

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    1. Radical has a connotation of "something bad" (ie - He was one radical m'fr.)

      And half of my family is beyond talking to.... wife, daughter, dil... We're all just screaming at the edge of the maelstrom.

      I feel like King Lear in Act III Sc. 1.

      The saying “Whom the gods would destroy they first make mad”.

      In the context of Sophocles' "Antigone" what was meant is that evil appears as good to those whom “the gods” will lead to destruction.

      Either that or I'm Ajax after killing the Greek's cattle in the Little Iliad.

      Pride goeth before the fall.

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  4. Kind of my point, Joe. The word has some vague connotation which she regards as bad, but she cannot even define what it is. That does not keep her from using the word as part of her expressed opinion.

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    1. Chorus:
      Sure 'twas a sage inspired that spake this word;
      If evil good appear
      To any, Fate is near;
      And brief the respite from her flaming sword.


      Sophocles, "Antigone"

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    2. btw - I like to call myself a RADICAL Progressive. And I mean it as per the historical usage implied below:

      The early Progressives were united in their concern about big business, but the agreement ended there. The movement was deeply split between two wings: the radicals, who (echoing Jefferson a century earlier) thought bigness was an evil to be fought on principle, and a more pragmatic wing (more in the mold of Hamilton) who saw the rise of big corporations as inevitable and even positive — a phenomenon not so much to be resisted as to be accommodated and even promoted.

      The principal combatants in this political and intellectual battle were no slouches. The radicals were led by Louis Brandeis, plaintiff’s lawyer, muckraker, and ultimately Supreme Court Justice. Brandeis famously bemoaned “the curse of bigness,” and opined that “If the Lord had intended things to be big, he would have made man bigger — in brains and character.” Brandeis inspired William Jennings Bryan (who favored a Federal law capping the size of corporations) and served as chief economic adviser to Woodrow Wilson (who nationalized big chunks of the economy during World War I) until Wilson put him on the high court in 1916.

      Opposing Brandeis for the accommodationists or pragmatists was Herbert Croly, founder of The New Republic and author of “The Promise of American Life” (1909). Arguing that “the huge corporations have contributed to American economic efficiency,” Croly promoted a reform agenda that included legalizing and empowering labor unions and strengthening the regulatory state — that is, rationalizing the emergence of Big Business by promoting the rise of Big Labor and creating Big Government. Croly’s views initially were embraced by the (Teddy) Roosevelt wing of the Republican Party, and, 30 years later, by Teddy’s distant cousin Franklin, who mostly resisted calls to break up big companies or nationalize significant chunks of the economy and instead promoted the growth of government while trying (without success) to grow the industrial economy.

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    3. Nietzsche

      The various languages placed side by side show that with words it is never a question of truth, never a question of adequate expression; otherwise, there would not be so many languages. The “thing in itself” (which is precisely what the pure truth, apart from any of its consequences, would be) is likewise something quite incomprehensible to the creator of language and something not in the least worth striving for. This creator only designates the relations of things to men, and for expressing these relations he lays hold of the boldest metaphors… It is this way with all of us concerning language; we believe that we know something about the things themselves when we speak of trees, colors, snow, and flowers; and yet we possess nothing but metaphors for things — metaphors which correspond in no way to the original entities… A word becomes a concept insofar as it simultaneously has to fit countless more or less similar cases — which means, purely and simply, cases which are never equal and thus altogether unequal. Every concept arises from the equation of unequal things. Just as it is certain that one leaf is never totally the same as another, so it is certain that the concept “leaf” is formed by arbitrarily discarding these individual differences and by forgetting the distinguishing aspects. This awakens the idea that, in addition to the leaves, there exists in nature the “leaf”: the original model according to which all the leaves were perhaps woven, sketched, measured, colored, curled, and painted — but by incompetent hands, so that no specimen has turned out to be a correct, trustworthy, and faithful likeness of the original model… We obtain the concept, as we do the form, by overlooking what is individual and actual; whereas nature is acquainted with no forms and no concepts, and likewise with no species, but only with an X which remains inaccessible and undefinable for us.

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    4. This is why it is a joy to deal with abstractions which are completely defined, not taken from nature. Their properties are ours to specify.

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    5. Ah, numbers. Math. Geometry. The foundations of all Arts & Sciences.

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    6. That which Plato would call "measure" (Philebus)...

      Or as Jowett speculates: The finite element which mingles with and regulates the infinite is best expressed to us by the word 'law.' It is that which measures all things and assigns to them their limit; which preserves them in their natural state, and brings them within the sphere of human cognition. This is described by the terms harmony, health, order, perfection, and the like. All things, in as far as they are good, even pleasures, which are for the most part indefinite, partake of this element. We should be wrong in attributing to Plato the conception of laws of nature derived from observation and experiment. And yet he has as intense a conviction as any modern philosopher that nature does not proceed by chance. But observing that the wonderful construction of number and figure, which he had within himself, and which seemed to be prior to himself, explained a part of the phenomena of the external world, he extended their principles to the whole, finding in them the true type both of human life and of the order of nature.

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    7. If only the anti-racists would deign to predict and measure the extent of damage that racism is doing to our economy and social cohesion... but that task seems beyond their care and perhaps too Euro-centric an approach. To simply claim social 'perfection' once the eradication of racists is achieved... THAT is their chosen method. "Expel the scapegoats and ALL WILL be well!" It's the method used since the invention of "society". Now where's my exorcist witch doctor... I'm getting a headache...

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    8. Did anybody deigned to predict and measure the extent of damage that kids up chimneys did to the Victorian economy and social cohesion? How do we know it was worth irradicating?

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    9. Rooting deeply? They did a good job in preventing fires?

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    10. Oh, narrower chimneys.

      Now where did my old buddy Bert get off to...

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    11. But you meant eradicate.

      Chimney sweeps are readily identifiable by the tools and soot... racists, not so much. It's like trying to identify a Jew without the little star on his clothes. And going after him isn't so easy as passing laws barring child chimney sweeps.

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    12. You have a good "test" for identifying racists? Perhaps you could share it.

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    13. You know, like "by their swastika armbands" or something...

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    14. In law, a test is a commonly applied method of evaluation used to resolve matters of jurisprudence.[1] In the context of a trial, a hearing, discovery, or other kinds of legal proceedings, the resolution of certain questions of fact or law may hinge on the application of one or more legal tests.

      Tests are often formulated from the logical analysis of a judicial decision or a court order where it appears that a finder of fact or the court made a particular decision after contemplating a well-defined set of circumstances. It is assumed that evaluating any given set of circumstances under a legal test will lead to an unambiguous and repeatable result.

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    15. I'm more interested in "testing" for racist systems & laws than for individual racists. I couldn't care less about identifying scapegoats.

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    16. So what's your test? Disproportionate impact?

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    17. Cuz you've been using that one for over fifty years now and here we are. No one seems to question racial disproportions in law firms or law schools, you should start there.

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    18. You'll have a hard time explaining those without considering IQs and AQs.

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    19. ...and any discussion of those ihas been a priori deemed dangerously offensive pseudoscience and therefore strictly VERBOTEN!

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    20. you may discuss them, but the onus is on you not to be boringly simplistic about it.

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    21. It's just the application of all that Eurocentric math and measure stuff that only white people believe in. If you ever care to bore yourself at the link below, you can.

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    22. ...but la griffe du lion does have an entertaining way of presenting the math.

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    23. ...after all, who knew that different voting systems (punch cards vs computer screens) were racist?

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    24. In voting, white people should be forced to use punch cards while black people usde optically scanned ballots. And black NFL players should wear 50 pound backpacks... and wear their shoes on opposite feet (left shoes on right feet) and white players 10 pound backpacks. Asian player require no handicapping gear.

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    25. I think white people should be rquiredto drink 3 martinis before being allowed to sit for the LSAT, too. It's only "fair".

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    26. Commentators who latch onto racial supremacist interpretations of iq tend to overlook some prominent numerical features of iq testing (so much for their cultural affinity to mathematics), also they need to be tediously incurious about the nature of intelligence to imagine that it can be usefully reduced to a single number. Bore yourself.

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    27. It's not 'supremacist' to believe that animals in different environments adapt to them differently and those who adapt more thoroughly breed more successfully and pass these traits on to their offspring. It's called evolutionary theory.

      Whether these adaptations can be reduced to a single number, IQ or AQ is not controversial. It's done in classrooms and gyms every day. I do not doubt that many with higher IQs or math SAT scores than mine can perform mathematics more competently than me. There's nothing supremacist about it unless you make it so. Science isn't "racist" and could give a sh*t about your or my "feelings".

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    28. ps - If I'm a lion in the jungle and I'm hungry, I'm definitely going to chase the white guy. I've a much better chance at eating that way.

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    29. What is 'supremacist' is to believe that the trait of intelligence is more important than others, like athletic ability, that the school nerds are the "rock stars" and not the football players or marching band members. Does anyone believe that? We are all "differently abled" and our abilities overlap. Average statistics tell you nothing about individual abilities. There are still white players in the NBA.

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    30. And finally, even if I were the most racist white supremacist on the planet, who cares? Should I be fired, ostracized, or locked up in a zoo? Do the oppressed need your protection? Does it make you feel "superior" that you can protect their feelings? Whose being the supremacist?

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    31. Well this is boring (hey look, I made a testable prediction!)

      No-one would claim that athleticism can be reduced down to a single number. Who's the better athlete, the shot putter or the 10km specialist? Would you say that intelligence is more or less complex than athleticism?

      Facts such as the existence of highly able intellectuals in various fields (including maths) who weren't particularly suited to performing well in exams, also don't give a shit about your feelings.

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    32. The AQ's of Olympic shot putters, 10k specialists, NFL players and NBA players aren't "higher than average"? The IQs of chess grand masters and Nobel physicists aren't higher than average? Who knew? Is the Chess Grand Master "superior" to the Physics Nobel Prize winner? lol!

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    33. ...and yes, a shot putter with a higher AQ than a 10k specialist will probably beat the 10k man when playing "other" sports as well.

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    34. ...just so long as "long distances" aren't involved.

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    35. As for complexity reduction, how does e=mc^2 strike you? The complexity of the entire universe reduced to 3 variables.

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    36. Actually, two variables and a constant.

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    37. This simply can not be intended to be persuasive, can it? I've seen you descend to this kind of pseudo-intellectual free-association before, often triggered by this or a closely related topic. Someone better versed in Lacan than I might be able to shed light on the psychology driving this.

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    38. The * in the equation represents your sphincter.

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    39. So yes, I think I've captured "all of you".

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    40. As for Lacan, he reduced all of human society to four symbols rotating through 4 perspectives. Mine's the A.

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  5. Does Bill Whittle limit himself by narrating so heavily (he even adopts the tone of a story-teller) as he tackles the subject of Narrative? Also, I wonder what Horkheimer was getting at with that crack about logic and content? I'm not familiar with this materal, but I suspect there was more to it than Whittle lets on.

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    1. Horkheimer - "Logic is not independent of content"

      Perhaps it was the failed "historicism" of Marx, and therefore the need for a "new historicism"... New historicism, a form of literary theory which aims to understand intellectual history through literature and literature through its cultural context, follows the 1950s field of history of ideas and refers to itself as a form of "Cultural Poetics".

      from your source on the Positivism debate:

      Frankfurt School critical theory, by contrast, denies that sociology can be severed from its metaphysical heritage; empirical questions are necessarily rooted in substantive philosophical issues. Drawing on concepts from Hegelian and Marxian traditions, critical theory conceives society as a concrete totality, a social environment, e.g. family, authorities, peers or mass media shape individual consciousness. According to the Frankfurt school, it is important to discover the society's fabrics to allow for individuals to overcome being cornered. Critical rationalism considers this goal to be impossible and any attempts (changing society out of possibly non-scientific deductions) to be dangerous. The Frankfurt school counters critical rationalism as being itself cornered, disallowing itself from asking scientific questions when just some methods are not available. Looking back in history "It is not the consciousness of men that determines their being, but their social existence that determines their consciousness" (Karl Marx)[full citation needed]. The social existence determines the mindset of scientists as well. All the hypotheses generated by scientists (which would need to be falsified) are limited to this society's thinkable. While critical rationalism provides methods that are supposed to have an influence on society it is this totality that makes the reforms advocated by Popper ineffective for noticeable changes.

      Popper, in contrast, held that the Frankfurt school view was historicist ideology failing to see that any attempt to cause a total change of society (i.e., revolution) leads to violence, and that society should better be changed step by step (by reforms) to solve specific problems and abolish specific evils. According to Popper, individuals, including scientists, are free to decide, and are perhaps restricted by their social existence, but not totally determined by it. Changes may then look ineffective and very slow, but will accumulate over time. Popper thinks it is the lesser evil compared to violent revolutions, since such reforms can be undone if they turn out to only make things worse, while revolutions usually lead to lengthy periods of tyranny. Thus, for Popper, the method of reforms should be preferred.


      I suppose I'm more in the Frankfort School Camp. Foucault's "Archeology of Knowledge" and the changes to medicine which resulted from the application of the "medical gaze" are pretty convincing. Sherlock Holmes and the modern "scientific man" could never have emerged before the medical gaze changed everything.... but it can only take you so far before some "new innovation" in logic is needed and can be effectively developed/applied. You may Drink no wine before its' time.

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    2. This, IMO, is Zizek's call for "Theory"... a new logic.

      A predictive psychohistory, but not quite the positivism of Asimov's Seldon Plan.

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    4. Something along the lines of a George Kennan, author of America's successful Containment Strategy following WWII.

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    5. Adam Curtis' recent series of documentaries pushes hard the idea that the data-driven surveillance-backed modern managerial style of politics is not capable of innovating or countenancing significant change, only maintaining the current system, for good or ill. FreeThinke was always keen to remind us of the limits of science and rational analysis. He'd have been delighted to find himself with you in the Frankfurt School camp ;)

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    6. He would never have acknowledged himself being in that camp.

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    7. FT made an art out of being completely wrong...

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    8. Right Opinion is never wrong.

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  6. The FBI warned of white supremacists in law enforcement 10 years ago. Has anything changed? NO! Definitely Not!

    This is what is going on today, and every day. And it has to end!

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    1. Perhaps they should only hire blacks to perform police duties, THAT would surely solve the problem!

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    2. After all, the statistics prove that... e-r-r-r-r... incidents of police misconduct are going down.

      But that's so Eurocentric and racist an answer...

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    3. BlueBullAmerica - I've seen the FBI report on White Supremacist infiltation into law enforcement agencies. I don't know what concerns me more, that the report is hundreds of pages long, or that most of them are redacted as classified material.

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  7. -FJ. Said:
    “Perhaps they should only hire blacks to perform police duties, THAT would surely solve the problem!”

    Perhaps you’re right!

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    1. Evidently "racism" isn't the problem... "whiteness" is.

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    2. Doesn't the statistics show police brutality is rather color-blind? The problem seems to be that instances of police brutality against black Americans seem to be carried out by repeat offenders. A cop that beats the excrement out of a white guy is far less likely to have a job afterwards.

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    3. Crime isn't color blind. 38% of all prisoners are black.

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    4. Does that show blacks commit more crimes or that they are imprisoned more often for crimes that other races get probation or suspended sentences for committing?

      I'm thinking of a white guy that was sentenced to 12 years for manufacturing crystal meth that was released after 2 years that went out and raped his girlfriend's 4 year old daughter to death shortly thereafter. Meanwhile there's black men doing life for piddly shit.

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    5. Smart criminals don't get caught.

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  8. I would the opportunity to have an educated and respectful dialogue about your concerns of someone who identifies with being against police, as I am PRO POLICE . And the very moment that you start cursing, name calling and coming up with false accusations, or Blaming Donald Trump and have ZERO evidence to back up your claim, you just get deleted, and UNFRIENDED ..

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  9. Let's face it, the Chauvin trial has nothing to do with "justice"... it's all about "keeping the peace". And we already know the direction that the Minneapolis city managers and prosecutors are going, heck they've already paid the Floyd family $27m to not light the fuse. All they need now to "seal the deal" is to put their designated scapegoat out of his misery.

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    1. The $27 million doesn't come out of the policing budget, or even Chsuvin's estate. When cops commit crimes, the cops never actually pay damages and restitution. That's the problem. I don't want my taxes going up so cops can be less competent and accountable.

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    3. Chauvin could make a positive contribution to society with his bone marrow and kidneys

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    4. They have qualified immunity. If they didn't have it, they'd have to be crazy to take the job.

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    5. Cuz the anti-racist crowd are going to need to see a lot of cops under the bus and even then, they'll never tone their screeching down. Every Chauvin is a feather in their moral self-righteousness hat.

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    6. No. Every Chauvin is a dirty misanthropic cop removed from the police force. Chauvin didn't kill Floyd for his race. He killed Floyd because he's a demented asshole.

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    7. In a far less docile city than left-wing Minneapolis, the video of Chauvin killing Floyd would have ended with the three cops hanging from streetlamps.

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    8. Illustrating the type of demented *ssholes the cops are facing and being criticized for dealing with.

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    9. Sorry, I live in the real world. Nothing Floyd did or is alleged to have done warranted a streetside extra-judicial execution with other cops working crowd control to prevent interference with the execution.

      Didn't your side of the absurdity spectrum just recently injure hundreds of police officers trying to assault Congress?

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    10. Floyd resisted arrest for half an hour before they stopped putting up with his bs.

      Didn't the capitol police just get exonerated in the shooting of an unarmed protestor? You don't hear me whining...

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    11. Floyd was detained, cuffed, and in police custody from the time he was confronted and exited his own vehicle. How arrested did he need to be?

      Resisting arrest? That's nonsense.

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    12. "You put him in the car then"

      Maybe have Barney Fife free up a hand by putting his proxy for masculinity back in its holster?

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  10. Jez,
    Earlier you stated: I'm more interested in "testing" for racist systems & laws than for individual racists

    I believe that Farmer asked you about what kind of test that should be.

    So, now I ask you: What kind of test should that be? Specifically, that is.

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    1. Hard question, which I didn't mean to imply that I could answer -- the scare quotes are there for a reason, as were Farmer's in the comment I was replying to. I don't think he can reliably "test" for racists either.

      Although it emerged from the field of economics, Goodhart's Law applies here: "when a feature of the economy is picked as an indicator of the economy, then it inexorably ceases to function as that indicator because people start to game it."

      Whatever we use as a "measure" of racism will be gamed by whatever entity wishes to "prove" that it is not racist, regardless of whether racism lingers: like how so many employers just send people on unconscious bias training... it probably doesn't do any good, but at least they can tick the box.

      Do you think it is useful to come up with a specific test which is not defeated by this effect?

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    2. Why would racists need to game an economic system? Racism adds cost, it doesn't reduce it. If a white person would work for less money, why would I hire a black one at greater expense?

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    3. Race only matters "economically" as a feature of "cultural capitalism" in pandering to the racism of customers.

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    4. ...or as a "facade" of non-racism or anti-racism.

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    5. ...so the customers can believe that they are "not racists" if their barrista is black.

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    6. ...and so the lily white citizens of Seattle can now interact with a non-threatening black guy/girl after watching their single black friend (Oprah) on television.

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    7. Gee, aren't I so "not-racist". I feel so good about me.

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    8. Meanwhile, Starbucks can promote open borders and inport cheaper black barristas from Jamaica.

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    9. Starbucks better order a huge allotment of H1-B visas from the Biden State Department!

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    10. Anti-racism is just the latest cultural capital "game".

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    11. No wonder the global corporations LOVE IT!

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    12. When addressing the "racism" question we should ask ourselves... Cui bene? Racist's (who hide their racism)? Or the Corporations selling "anti-racism" to their customers?

      Racism no longer a problem in America. It's become a veritable boon!

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    13. Racism has become so profitable to certain anti-racist segments of society and corporations today that in its' absence, it must faked to make it seem more pervasive than it actually is.

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    14. Never forget the bottom line here is for black families to get adequate legal recourse when cops needlessly kill their relatives. Still holding out for that.

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    15. Jez,
      Still holding out for [adequate legal recourse when cops needlessly kill their relatives].

      Really?

      It seems to me that various legal groups rush in when the killing is truly needless.

      Maybe the issue is the definition of needlessly.

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    16. Maybe, also the definition of adequate.

      Chris Rock, more recently

      John Oliver, on police accountability

      Haven't watched these recently, but I guess a general language morning is likely required!

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    17. should be "language warning"

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    18. Jez,
      Yes, the video deserves a language warning. Of course, it it Chris Rock's tradition to use many expletives.

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    19. Chris Rock: "Cops aren't paid enough."

      True, IMO.

      And, now, with the current atmosphere, the number of "best" people wanting to be cops will be GREATLY reduced. Police forces will attract the wrong kinds of people: for example, those who like the power of throwing their weight around.

      Vicious cycle!

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    20. Another good way to attract those kinds of bad cops is to run the police force as if it were a wing of the military.

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    21. Would you rather have the kind that yell, "Taser, taser, taser" and then shoot people?

      Most of these incidents are just bad situations gone wrong, not "racist cops gunning for the darkly complected".

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    22. Do you think they'd be more careful if there were more accountability?

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    23. Remember the Oakland Transit Officer that did the same thing? People who make deadly and tragic mistakes like these have to live with their mistakes. Would you punish a parent who accidently kills their child?

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    24. Majority of child abuse us dished out by parents: it isn't safe to turn a blind eye to parentally inflicted injuries either.

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    25. No one reviews police shooting incidents or investigate citizen complaints? Who knew?

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  11. What's going on in classrooms all across America!

    From I Refuse to Stand By While My Students Are Indoctrinated:

    My school, like so many others, induces students via shame and sophistry to identify primarily with their race before their individual identities are fully formed. Students are pressured to conform their opinions to those broadly associated with their race and gender and to minimize or dismiss individual experiences that don’t match those assumptions.
    The morally compromised status of “oppressor” is assigned to one group of students based on their immutable characteristics. In the meantime, dependency, resentment and moral superiority are cultivated in students considered “oppressed.”
    All of this is done in the name of “equity,” but it is the opposite of fair. In reality, all of this reinforces the worst impulses we have as human beings: our tendency toward tribalism and sectarianism that a truly liberal education is meant to transcend
    .

    More at the above link. Read it and weep.

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  12. The Origins Of "The Narrative"

    The video itself is a narrative. Narratives are arguments that a group of people buy into and profligate. Whether true or not.

    It is the choice of the individual as to which narratives they believe. Regardless the narratives they choose to believe they are defined in life by those beliefs. It has always been such and it likely will always bo so.

    Narratives are those well worn rgumemts people fall back on when they begin to discontinue thinking for themselves. Usually happens fairly early in life to the majority

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    1. Another Sick Puppy from the Weird World of Progressiveism.

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    2. Sick puppy. Weird workd if progressivism. LOL!!

      Some might say that's the pot calling the kettle black

      At least Mustang made a cogent argument that one can consider. Even if the results of said considering does not end up in complete agreement.

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  13. Part I

    The word racist is so overused these days that it has lost its meaning and effect. The claim has become too convenient and agenda-driven. The emotional impact of “racist” is that it produces a reaction not dissimilar to the use of the word “nigger.” There will be no worthwhile conversation about race issues if the starting point for discussion begins with an objectionable point of reference.

    It may be time for everyone to reflect upon the story about the boy who called “wolf.” So, we begin with this question: do we want a productive conversation or not?

    I propose a different approach. Rather than assuming racism, let us consider “bias” or “prejudice.” Everyone has biases; everyone has prejudices. There are as many reasons for this as there are biases. I prefer Fords. That preference doesn’t make me a despicable person.

    The issues we’re talking about are law and society. We must consider two aspects of law: the legislation of it and how the law is applied. Ostensibly, our laws are written for the betterment of society. Lawmakers write the rules to govern everyone equally — there is no favoritism, so there is no bias or prejudice. There is also no bias or prejudice if the law is equally applied. Are our laws applied equally? I argue that generally — yes. There are exceptions, such as when the political elite escape prosecution simply because they belong to an elite political group. Making exceptions for people because of their socio-economic status is corrupt. Even one instance of this is unacceptable in democratic societies — but they are also a fact of life.

    But is the application of law different for whites than it is for blacks? You will hear that argument, but I believe it is without foundation. If we suppose that a city’s population is 18% black, and traffic stops involving black citizens are “at or less than” 18% of all traffic stops, then I fail to see how there is any prejudicial behavior in applying traffic laws. If the percentage of traffic stops for black citizens exceeds 18% by more than a few percentage points, then we might conclude that the issue bears looking into. If our analysis is conducted in an unbiased manner, as it should be, then we stand a good chance of discovering what the problem involves. Are we talking about prejudiced coppers or bad drivers? The focus in this instance is learning whether there are some things that we need to do to ensure (a) equal treatment under the law or (b) improved highway safety through better driver education.

    Recently, two black men have died while in police custody. Did racially prejudiced police officers single out either of these two men or were they detained because of legitimate legal issues? Once detained, were these men treated according to established law enforcement protocols? If these men were detained because they broke the law, then the policemen were doing their job of law enforcement. If, having been detained (also called arrested), if the police treat detainees according to law enforcement protocol, then there is no suggestion of bias or prejudice in their treatment. There is nothing wrong with citizens wanting to examine those protocols or making recommendations for adopting new protocols.

    ~Continued

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When your preference for Fords extended to you relaxing safety or emissions standards and penalizing rival brands, then it becomes an issue.

      "Lawmakers write the rules to govern everyone equally — there is no favoritism, so there is no bias or prejudice." -- is there evidence or an argument for this, or does it go without saying?

      "I fail to see how there is any prejudicial behavior in applying traffic laws" -- merely counting stops leaves a lot of data eg. intensity and tenor of those stops, unaccounted for.

      "Does it appear, given the statistics presented, that police officers apply the law equally? Yes." Shootings are the tip of the iceberg. Counting shootings does not tell us anything about how beatings, rough treatment, harsh language, petty vindictiveness etc. are applied to different groups.
      "since the law applies to everyone equally, we expect to hold police officials accountable for wrongful behavior." Yes please, let's do that.

      If you are confident that the police will treat you fairly, then there's no need to resist a wrongful arrest. But how do you explain to someone who suspects that the police will plant evidence or beat him or even kill him, that he should not resist arrest? If his suspicions seem far-fetched for America, let's say we're talking about a foreign regime somewhere.

      Delete
    2. "-- is there evidence or an argument for this, or does it go without saying?

      The Equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment.

      All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

      Delete
    3. But how do you explain to someone who suspects that the police will plant evidence or beat him or even kill him, that he should not resist arrest?

      Journalists overblowing the actions of a few bad apples and then screaming, "Systemic racism, systemic racism!"

      Delete
    4. The "suspicious" person will never be talked to since journalists are the "culture czars" who sell unfounded racism fears. The suspicious man will hear of every George Floyd incident, but never of Christian Bowman. The "narrative" of White Racism must be perpetuated indefinitely, after all.

      Delete
    5. Perhaps they would though if White Lives mattered. But since they don't, the narrative of an "out of control racist police" will persist.

      Delete
    6. Nietzsche, "On the Future of Our Educational Institutions"

      Now, tell me, distinguished master, what hopes could I still have in a struggle against the general topsy-turvification of all genuine aims for education; with what courage can I, a single teacher, step forward, when I know that the moment any seeds of real culture are sown, they will be mercilessly crushed by the roller of this pseudo-culture (journalism)? Imagine how useless the most energetic work on the part of the individual teacher must be, who would fain lead a pupil back into the distant and evasive Hellenic world and to the real home of culture, when in less than an hour, that same pupil will have recourse to a newspaper, the latest novel, or one of those learned books, the very style of which [42]already bears the revolting impress of modern barbaric culture——"

      Delete
    7. We don't control the "narrative" Jez, YOU DO!

      Delete
    8. Get back to me when you're ready to acknowledge that there's more than one narrative in play.

      Delete
    9. Jez,
      there's more than one narrative in play

      Of course! One narrative naturally spawns more narratives.

      And the beat goes on....

      Delete
    10. The "no racism here" narrative, and "the system is completely fine" narratives in general, are comforting and therefore highly seductive.

      Delete
    11. Where can I hear them, jez? Can you hear them on college campus'? The inner city? The New York Times? The Washington Post? Is there a Hollywood movie made since '68 with that message?

      Delete
    12. Is there a classroom in America that teaches "there's no racism" since Zinn's "People's History"?

      Delete
    13. Alternative Narratives exist, but they're not allowed to be stated in public.

      Delete
    14. ....and if things are said in public, people immediately put their fingers in their ears and start screaming "Racism.... I'm not a racist... not me.... I didn't say it!"... so please.

      Delete
    15. How about the narrative that government is comprised of a "deep state" of ne'er-do-wells that despite their malicious hearts employ squeaky clean paragons of virtue in local law enforcement?

      Delete
    16. Lots of narratives claim to be "forbidden" -- it's a well worn trope, but look around you. I don't know which papers are which in America, but definitely the press in the UK is full of it (both senses of the word). And you hear plenty of it through word of mouth, all the way from pubs and taxi cabs (pre-covid, now relagated to facebook) up to Parliament & the royal family. Have you seen the movie "pursuit of Happyness" (sic) or Fox News and its recent competitors?

      Delete
    17. Harry and Meghan sure through the royal family under the bus. And no, nobody I know spews a narrative that the Royal family's sh*t doesn't stink.

      Delete
    18. Harry's brother reacted by claiming that the RF is "very much not racist." You don't need to be convinced, it's still a narrative.

      Delete
    19. Please, but wasn't that precisely the reactionary point? To get them to say, "we're not racist" and commit HRM to persecuting other imaginary racists and throw them under the bus? It's the witch hunt for perceived social sleights and imagined evils that never ends.

      Delete
    20. Now... demonstrate for us your "not racist" by finding a "racist" and throwing him under our bus, It's your ONLY path for redemption, and even when you've done it you'll still be suspect.

      Delete
    21. Racism today is sooooo not a problem. The problem today is "anti-racism".

      Delete
    22. Portland, Seattle, Minneapolis, "show us you're not racist, throw your police department under the bus!"

      Delete
    23. the response should be,"show us the numbers that reveal a problem with a testable data driven solution.

      Delete
    24. ...or stfu about rcist cops!

      Delete
    25. 10/10 not going to shut up about demanding full accountability for police brutality.

      Delete
    26. Unless you have experience enforcing the law and arresting people who don't cooperate, you should show a little more humility about what it takes to do the job. No one has the infinite patince you would demand.

      Delete
    27. How many punches and blows need a police officer take before returning force with superior force and violence with anything other than greater violence?

      Delete
    28. I second the points made by FJ @ 10:2 PM and 10:30 PM!

      What transpires when police officers interact with and/or confront subjects is a battlefield of sorts. IMO, we don't really want to know that battlefield.

      Delete
    29. How many punches did Chauvin take from Floyd before he cut off his brain's oxygen supply pinching his neck between his knee and the pavement?

      There's an intelligent conversation to be had here. Why come ill-equipped for it?

      Delete
    30. For how long did Floyd resist getting into the police car instead of waiting for an ambulance and meat wagon?

      Delete
    31. So you concede that Chauvin knew Floyd was in need of medical assistance before he killed him.

      This is your hero?

      Delete
    32. Chauvin was actively treating Floyd for excited delerium as he was trained to do so by the Minneapolis PD.

      Delete
    33. LOL... the ol' "I killed him for being scared" defense.

      I hope they televize Chauvin's execution.

      Delete
    34. One used succesfully by police in the past for the death of white kids in Texas... but that doesn't fit any narratives.

      Delete
    35. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    36. How far into Mike Lyndell's meth stash do you have to be to posit crushing someone's neck onto pavement is a medical technique with a straight face?

      Delete
    37. If BLM reduces police brutality, I'm sure the class of white people who is currently also exposed to that brutality will be grateful.

      Delete
    38. BLM encourages people to resist arrest and be killed.

      Delete
    39. Judge results and intentions, not just one or the other.

      Delete
  14. Part II

    In the year 2020, police shot a total of 895 citizens; of those, 241 were black citizens — or around 27% of the total. In 2020, police shootings involved .000000272%. of the US population. This year, police have shot 101 citizens. Of those, 30 were black citizens — about 29%. Is this a national crisis? No. Is there any evidence that police shoot black citizens on a more frequent basis than any other racial or ethnic group? No. Does it appear, given the statistics presented, that police officers apply the law equally? Yes.

    We do seem to have exhausted the argument about police misconduct — the use of excessive force, as an example. There are examples of officer misconduct, of course, and since the law applies to everyone equally, we expect to hold police officials accountable for wrongful behavior.

    But there is one area that we have not adequately addressed. People who violate society’s laws should expect a visit from law enforcement officers. What should a citizen do when a police officer detains or arrests them? Should they resist arrest or otherwise make the confrontation worse? Should they assault the policeman? The answers are obvious. Police officers are trained to employ only reasonable force to fulfill their duty as law enforcement officers, taking lawbreakers into custody. By “reasonable force,” we mean that force that the police officer believes is necessary to effect the arrest.

    So, I have to ask, “How reasonable is it for a lawbreaker to resist arrest?” If young black men are brought up thinking that their race is more important than their role as citizens, we have already identified a problem with society. What makes anyone think that their race is superior to any other or deserves special treatment — if our laws are equally applied? Maybe we need less pride in skin color and more pride as citizens of a well-ordered society where equality ... true equality ... really matters.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Those numbers... is that how many people the police killed with gunfire or how many they shot total lethally or not? Not count on how many people cops choked to death?

      Delete
  15. Law enforcement officers need to keep a running tab of how many people of each demographic they have arrested during each calendar year. Then, when observing a violation of the law, they should check the perpetrator against their running tabulation. If an arrest would throw their ratios out of proportion, for instance he is black and the officer's arrests are already at 32% Asian, then the officer should not make the arrest because the Asian population is 32% and his arrest ratio cannot exceed that percentage.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sorry, too complex for this late at night. Should have said "If the perpetrator is Asian..."

      Delete
    2. Maybe some assertiveness training for them so they're not pissing themselves an going trigger-happy in "fear for their life" when confronted by unarmed people?

      Delete
  16. Adorno ad Horkheimer wouldn't be surprised to see that capitalist culture grants freedom to choose what is always the same.

    We've already been had and saps like Whipple are just tools.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are right about that. Corporate America is perfectly fine with affiliating anti-racism with their brands just so long as every imagined racist in the world is kept censored, silenced, and shivering in his closet unable to question the virtues of anti-racism.

      Delete
    2. Cuz Coca Cola wants to encourage YOU to be free to change, just not from from a narrow of consumer selections which includes their brands.

      Delete
  17. Rashida Tlaib Said. “No More Policing… It Can’t Be Reformed.”
    It takes a Special kind of Stupid to be her.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Classic Whittle ... one of his best! It has even more meaning after reading The Devil and Karl Marx. How many know about the "Frankfurt School" which desired to set society free from the constraints of historical Western culture “to liberate human beings from the circumstances that enslave them,” in their words.

    Their disciples set out to fundamentally change NOT via government, but via the realm of culture, notably in matters of sexual orientation, gender, marriage, and family. From early members Erich Fromm, Herbert Marcuse, Walter Benjamin (channeling Marx's buddy Bakunin), to the execrable Kate Millet they created an ever changing field of victims to champion in the cause of laying waste the foundations of western civ. The possibilities are endless. No wonder our institutions hammer away at victimology.

    Recovery is possible. See Adam Coleman’s Black Victim To Black Victor: Identifying the ideologies, behavioral patterns and cultural norms that encourage a victimhood complex.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Baysider,
      Recovery is possible.

      Oh, how I want to believe that!

      But to get there our nation will have to go through such horrible times.

      Delete
  19. The debate that has ensued not just here - but on the tip of the tongue from most everyone - even those with a camera and a microphone, is siding with the very one who claimed he could bring to the country of his dreams > Trains Run On Time!
    The Children in class rooms today are told to renounce their
    Whiteness and their Christianity.
    The two very main topics - as well as a few lessor, in the great takeover of a society using a time tested method.
    "Fascism".
    This debate is a cover to slide Fascism front and center before the weary citizens can distinguish that the gate is being closed after everyone is herded into the box canyon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. TS/WS,
      The Children in class rooms today are told to renounce their
      Whiteness and their Christianity.


      I heard just that from a young man that I tutored yesterday. The professor, at the local community college and teaching the required course American History, is 40-something and white, the young man about age 22 and white. His professor had gone off on tirades to that effect the last few class sessions, and the young man I was working with was taken greatly aback. And a little afraid. "He really hates me. I don't get it!"

      Delete
    2. TSWS... could you point out the historical fascist government that put so much scrutiny and criticism on their police forces?

      Delete
    3. Renouncing “skin color” is no more than jaw-droppingly stupid. I suspect it’s a coded language for “stop fighting and accept the lowest common denominator in a multicultural society.” No thanks.

      Delete
    4. Mustang, who's fighting? We already defer to bands of roving highwaymen, thugs, murderers, and rapists and give them a pass if they're wearing a badge.

      Delete
    5. I thought this post was about

      "The Narrative"

      The Origins Of

      George Zimmerman is a "White Mexican",
      "Hands up - Don't Shoot",
      witness testified differently.
      "You don't need a Magazine with 15 Bullets".
      Unless you are surrounded by a bunch of Clansmen.
      "Cops are killing more Black Folk" than Whites.
      Why are the Media quite about Black thugs attacking Asians? Only reports are the Asians are being attacked.
      Trying to bring in just another Race - to the
      "The Narrative"

      Delete
    6. "Hands Up Don't Shoot" - the broad daylight killing of Michael Brown by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson - where the only witness that could corroborate Wilson's story was a mental patient that wasn't even there that day. 🙄

      Delete
  20. Perhaps embracing the oneness of humanity might be a good start for the cons of The Trumpublican Era.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Embracing the oneness of humanity

      Joe Biden said: The Constitution is not absolute.
      Are you recommending the Women's Right To Vote be taken away?
      Are you embracing returning to Slavery?

      God please return us to The Trumpublican Era,
      where we are Individual's with Rights From God;
      NOT with Rights given to us from Government or
      "oneness of humanity". Please please...

      Delete
    2. Would that be the Trumpublican Era where Cheeto Jesus advocated seizing weapons from people without due process?

      Delete
    3. That would be Elizzy Warren and Joey's Ex. Orders.

      Delete
    4. False. Joe Biden has NEVER proposed anything in regards to gun rights as anti-Constitutional as this America-hatimg left-wing twit

      Delete
    5. TC,
      Joe Biden has NEVER proposed anything in regards to gun rights as anti-Constitutional as this America-hatimg left-wing twit

      No worries. [sarcasm]

      Biden et al will get around to that. Possibly predicated upon the recent FedEx shooter.

      Delete
  21. What Trump said in the Video has been going on since Bubba Clinton, and other Dems ordering Police to confiscate guns
    since the 1990's. Oshkosh Wisconsin residence were woke from sleep early in morning hours to see Police searching their closets.
    With out probable cause.
    Trump said what he said was with probable cause.
    Assault Guns Ban (which is a fictitious gun) was voted on
    and passed under Bubba Clinton and the Dems. As I recall Joey was a Senator back then and gave his vote and proposed
    in regard to gun rights as anti-Constitutional.
    The Change in Congress was overdue and the Republicans overturned that proposal, and short lived Joey's law.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Gun Control was a big part of the Joe Bidens
    "Jim Crow" law, back when Biden was a young Senator.
    You know Senator Byrd the KKK Grand Poobaa that took Joey under his KKK wing, and taught Joey how to stealthy keep the Minorities under foot and get them to vote Democrat at the same time.
    Jim Crow Law was a whole lot more than restricting Voter Rights.
    This new gun control push is just a second try at the Jim Crow Law on steroids to restrict the Black folks rights to arm themselves, just another under the radar attack the Dems are proving they still hate Black folks.
    And yes this is still on topic of "The Narrative" .

    ReplyDelete
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