Archive for the ‘News’ Category

The God of the 21st Century

Wednesday, April 13th, 2016
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So I was out of town, and I was hoping that when I got back, the whole locker-room issue with the student at School District 211 would be gone.  But, not only is it still there, but I see that the “creating change” conference in Chicago has come and gone, complete with restroom signs that the advocates found “non-offensive.” A plain restroom with a male or female silhouette?  Terrible:  “I’m reminded of the gender-binary that enforces the erasure of me.” An honest to gosh quote from someone who should just be thrilled to live in America.  The land of the free and the home of the brave, and a country so great, so wealthy, where persons have so very few real concerns about food, shelter and clothing that someone can actually have a job doing workshops on bathroom access.   No lie.   Do you know what an offensive bathroom sign is?  A sign that says “whites only.”

I wonder if the 211 student was a featured speaker.  I’ll say “211 student” because I never saw his or her name in the paper, which I suppose was to protect the privacy rights of this boy who feels like a girl (and I still am not sure whether that is a “transgender male” or “transgender female.”).  If this kid wanted privacy, he or she should have just shut the hell up and used the boys locker room.  But not if you are worshiping the God of the 21st Century:  Feelings.  At one time, when God was God, you could have said: “Look, Junior, God made you a man.  I don’t care what you feel like, but feelings and emotions are unreliable.”  Then, in the Good old days when Science was God, one might have said: “Look, junior, Genetically and biologically you are a man.  You have an x and a y chromosome, just like your dad.  I know that you might feel feminine sometimes, but feelings and emotions can change, so its an unreliable way to plan your life.”  Now that Feelings are God, however you feel is not only perfectly fine, but if you have enough advocates, you can make a whole school district do your bidding.  Even the offer of his or her (hiser?) own changing room was rejected.  Not equal.  Equal to What?  Girls who are girls?  Guys who are guys?  Hiser wants to change with all the girls because that is just how it feels.

Funny, but as I understand it, this male (and you can probably tell by the Y chromosome  hanging there between his legs) feels funny dressing in front of persons who look like a male because he feels like a female.  What about the persons who feel like a female (because they are – you can tell because they don’t have a Y chromosome hanging there between their legs) that don’t like getting dressed in front of a person who looks like a male?  They (the girls) won’t care at all, we’re told.  Not by the girls, of course, but by the transgender advocates.

So, let’s recap:  God doesn’t matter; science doesn’t matter; the feelings of the actual girls don’t matter, the feelings of the guys (who are guys and feel like guys and wish that they had access to the girls’ locker room) don’t matter, only the feelings of the guy who feels like a girl matter.  All of you – the parents, school district, fellow students, can all go to hell if you don’t bow down to the god of the 21st Century:
“MY FEELINGS”  And apparently, though the constitution guarantees both the free exercise of religion and that there won’t be any “law respecting an establishment of religion” the Federal Government will be on your side to beat up anyone who won’t worship at the altar of the LGBT agenda.  However, with 319 million people in America, and with 319 million individual “feelings” to protect, where does one stop?

The truth is, your feelings only matter if you are part of a small enough group.  A country that was organized to protect its citizens against the tyranny of the majority finds itself subject to the tyranny of the minority, with the full force of the federal government bureaucracy behind it.  An army of One, indeed.

Its funny, but parents used to be the bulwark against “feelings” that were unhelpful, immoral, or unhealthy.  If you ate dirt, your mom made sure you didn’t even if you liked to.  Now, if you’re a little boy and you eat dirt, or like to dress as a girl and play with dolls, your mom is likely to write the Tribune about how she learned to give positive reinforcement to your feelings.  You know, only 20 years ago or so, feminists told us that playing with dolls or dressing like a girl was only an artificial construct of a patriarchal and misogynistic society.   Now its proof that you should get to change in the girls’ locker room.

 

Three trillion trees and global warming

Friday, October 23rd, 2015
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I had to laugh to myself when I read a Chicago Tribune article on trees.  It appears that now we know for certain that there are over 3,000,000,000,000 trees on earth (that’s three trillion for those who lost track of zeros).  Until I read the article, I was perfectly comfortable with, though ignorant of, the fact that there were only 400,000,000,000 trees (four hundred billion!).  Who’d have thought that “scientists” would be off by 87%!  There were actually 7.5 times MORE trees than scientists thought.  Put another way, they were 87% wrong and only 13% right.

Then the punch line:  the Yale “scientist” boldly asserts that “[s]ince the spread of human influence, we’ve reduced the number almost by half, which is an astronomical thing.”  Well, until his most recent “study,” that meant that we lost 400 billion trees to get down to the 400 billion we thought we had.  Now, as of yesterday, I know that we’ve lost 3 trillion trees to get down to the three trillion we now “know” we have.  There should be kindling everywhere!  So, my question is, what the heck does “since the spread of human influence” mean, and how can a guy whose previous estimates were off by 87% be confident about anything, much less the number of trees lost since the dawn of time?

So, yes, I have my doubts about science and studies and “experts.”  After all, experts and scientists have, in the last 45 years, told me that we were entering an ice age (early 1970s), that we were running out of oil (late 1970’s), that it would take “decades” to get Lake Michigan back to its “normal” level (1980s), Y2K would cause global chaos (1990s) that bird flu would sweep the globe and kill millions (early 2000s) and that, horrors, we had only 400 billion trees!  Don’t even get me started on killer bees, fire ants, acid rain, and the hole in the Ozone Layer.

Of course, no Tribune story would be complete without a reference to Global Warming.  “Trees pull carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere as they grow, and cutting or burning them down releases that carbon again. So that means that deforestation is making global warming worse — and it also means that if we were living on an Earth with close to 6 trillion trees, rather than 3 trillion, climate change would be less severe.”

True, maybe, but now you have 3 trillion trees instead of 400 billion.  If trees were so important in the fight against climate change, was that ever part of the “calculus” that the global warming models used?  Are the global warming models off by 87%?  After all, if scientists could be that wrong about the number of trees which are right here to count (hey look, a tree!), how much more doubt is there in the infinitely more complicated process of predicting the global climate 100 years from now, or tomorrow.

Please don’t call me a “climate change denier.”  Call me a skeptic with decades of proof that experts have been wrong time and again, and hesitant to give credence to another government-funded, media-fueled catastrophe in the making.

Microaggressions

Thursday, October 15th, 2015
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I have a macroaggression for one half of today’s 10/15/15 Chicago Tribune Perspective page:  “Stupid.”  Regina Rici, who (I checked) appears to be a run of the mill Caucasian  woman, PhD, assistant professor and faculty fellow at NYU, and guest Tribune Perspective writer  refers to herself as part of “an underground moral culture of the disempowered.”  This disempowered PhD criticizes a study of microaggression that described the phenomena as part of a culture of victimhood.  Ms. Rini asserts Campbell and Manning’s “culture” analysis is morally flawed as it only considers the morals of the dominant cultures and that somehow reporting mircroaggressions on twitter will help the disempowered respond to moral mistreatment.   She hopes reporting of these incredibly small and petty (her words) grievances in social media over time will allow us to see the pattern of seemingly inconsequential microaggressions as a whole.  Apparently authors Campbell and Manning committed moral microagression against Ms. Rini in authoring their theory, and should be reported on twitter as well as in the pages of the tribune.

Ms. Rini isn’t done, however.  She cites the perfectly reasonable theory that “students should also be taught how to live in a world full of potential offenses”  as an unreasonable response to these petty and small grievances.   She posits that “what is taught to students now will help create the culture of the future.”  First, I’d like to find out what was taught that resulted in the present culture, go back in time, and eliminate it.  Second, as a parent who has paid for three college educations, I wonder how many other parents would object to paying good tuition dollars to have their children schooled in the art and science of using twitter to make a mountain out of a molehill.

Ester Cepeda, on the other half of the Perspective page, wrote on her mixed feelings for the commercialization of her culture’s Day of the Dead celebration.  Ms Cepeda, an actual member of a minority, didn’t complain as a member of “an underground moral culture of the disempowered” but penned a perfect example of dealing with a “world full of potential offences” and concludes that her right to point out when others are being tacky is all part of the brewing of the melting pot we live in.

The Tribune leans further to the left every day, so I’d hardly recommend that your readers actually buy a paper.  However, it would be worth the cost to compare the voice of the culture of victimhood, Ms. Rini, with the voice of someone who could really choose to get her shorts in a knot, but decided against it.

I mildly like firearms, and kinda like the Second Amendment

Friday, October 2nd, 2015
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So, I am new to this blogging thing.  I had a nice idea about trees to post.  Then, some dope shot up a school in Oregon.  I was flipping around last night looking at dour faces on the TV using the tragedy to push limits on Second Amendment Rights.  I’ve heard reasonable proposals for licensing and background checks.  Much of what I’ve heard is stupid.   I’m NOT an NRA member or supporter, but on the other hand, I don’t want to get into a discussion with an anti gun activist about where the commas are in the Second Amendment either.  I don’t shoot often, but when I do, I really, really have fun.  I’d hope that I could use a firearm in defense of my family and home.

What I was thinking about when I saw the death toll go from 9 to 10, however,  was the proud, liberal sanctimony of the oft-heard phrase (concerning our justice system)  “We’d rather let 99 guilty people go free than convict one innocent person” or as Blackstone put it 200 odd years ago “It is better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer.”  I suspect inflation has that effect on everything, including cliches.

Political hubbub and Media focus on the costs of our Second Amendment rights, but not the costs of our other rights under the Bill of Rights.  They trot out the specter of the grieving families as if to say “tell these grieving families about your right to bear arms.”  But Guess What?  The 99 guilty people who go free because the presumption of innocence, requirement of proof beyond a reasonable doubt, and Amendments IV, V, VI, and VIII of the Bill of Rights cost human lives just as assuredly as the firearm in Oregon.  Let’s just take a quick look at the constitutional provisions that prevent state and federal  gendarmes from kicking down all of our doors and hauling us away:

Amendment IV  The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause…

Amendment V  No person… shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law

Amendment VI In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense.

Amendment VIII  Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted

Now assuming the coppers will only go after the bad guys and the mentally unstable, nothing would cut down on crime quite like some unreasonable searches and seizures, compelled confessions, being locked away without due process, trial without counsel, all topped off by excessive sentences or some nice cruel and unusual punishment.  It’s also apparent that, if we’re going to solve a problem by tinkering with constitutional rights, we’d get plenty of bang for the buck in this area.  The Bureau of Justice statistics, in 2014, reported that 68% of 405,000 prisoners released in 30 states (in 2005) were arrested for a new crime within three years, and 77% within 5.  71% of violent offenders were recidivists.  I found those statistics in about two seconds from a CBS news report in 2014.  I’m sure I could turn that into rapes and murders per year with ease.  But, it is sufficient for my point that all of our constitutional rights come at a cost in lives.

However, after some mentally unbalanced nut shoots up a school, the politicians and the media can’t get any mileage with press conferences or presidential addresses calling for the curtailing of constitutional rights for the mentally ill, or cruel and unusual punishment (which, btw, in our jurisprudence includes excessively long prison sentences).   There’ll be no panel discussions of whether the government could test us all and lock away the  coo coo birds.  That’d be unconstitutional!  It’d be like making everyone take an IQ test before they exercise their right of free speech! (which you’re probably thinking is a good idea right about now).

As my good friend Judge Quetsch used to say: “the constitution is not a technicality” and “If the government can kick a criminal’s door down at 1 in the morning, they can kick your door down at 1 in the morning.”  The point?  If you start to erode the rights you have in the constitution, nothing protects you from the government.  The Bill of Rights was meant to provide serious protection from the federal constabulary.  Those rights should be treated as sacrosanct.  The Second Amendment too.

On Jury Selection

Monday, November 21st, 2011
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B&K’s own Daniel Compton was on the radio on Wednesday, discussing the process of jury selection. Here’s the video of his taping — go ahead and skip to around the 11-minute mark. Time bombs, beware!

The Laura Dion-Jones Show