Days Black People Not Re-Enslaved By Trump

Friday, September 21, 2018

Tell It To Allen Brooks, Emmett Till and Bennett Barbour

The spectacle that is the current news on the Kavanaugh hearing has me mad. All over the place I see people talking about "The Victim" as if a jury had ruled that there was a crime committed. I head people talking about "The Victim" as if they actually saw the alleged incident for themselves. If it was just your run of the mill civilian with little power I would not be mad. What has me mad is that the people spouting this nonsense are government officials. These people have the power to make, unmake and wholly disregard the law.

Not once, in the amount of reading and viewing I have done, have I see one of these government officials say "alleged victim" as is the proper legal standard. Since there has been absolutely no evidence provided of an actual event occurring, nobody outside of the claimant and her lawyer should be using the term "victim" without "alleged" ahead of it. This speaks to the depths that the US system of government has fallen.

On top of this nonsense you have people claiming that we should "believe women". Really? We don't [shouldn't] be running a government based on "belief". We should be running government on proof. This is particularly the case where it comes to crime and punishment. Should we take allegations seriously? Absolutely. But taking allegations seriously requires that we also take a critical look at the claims being made. Democrats like to tell us about "who we are". Well presumption of innocence is "who we are". Why has this not been central to the reporting? Why hasn't that been the center of the so called hearings?

Go check the Innocence Project if you think "women should be believed".

On February 7, 1978, a 19-year-old student at the College of William and Mary was sexually assaulted at gunpoint. As soon as the rapist left, the victim called the police. When investigators arrived, the victim told them that her assailant weighed 145 pounds and was 5’6” tall. There had been a number of other rapes in the area during this time.

The Investigation and Trial

One week after the attack, the victim was shown a photo array. The victim picked Barbour’s photo out of the lineup, and then picked him out of two live lineups (consisting of the same people in different orders). The next day, Barbour was arrested. He weighed only 115 pounds at the time of his arrest. Furthermore, Barbour suffered from a brittle-bone disease and had a pin in his elbow at the time, making rape seem unlikely.

Hair taken from the scene did not match Barbour’s, and tests performed on the semen revealed only the presence of Type A blood. The victim had Type A blood, while Barbour had Type B.

At the trial, the principal evidence against Barbour was the eyewitness testimony of the victim, though he did not match the victim’s initial description, and no physical evidence tied him to the crime. His alibi, that he was watching television with his family and neighbors that night, was corroborated by three witnesses at trial.

In spite of all of this, Barbour was convicted of rape on April 14, 1978 and sentenced to ten years in prison. According to the post-sentence report, the investigators from the case still had doubts about Barbour’s guilt, and were reportedly continuing investigation.

That's just one example and in this case we had an actual crime reported! In the Kavanaugh case, there is no report. There is over 30 elapsed years and people who are making claims, each way, none of which is evidence.

Why is the Congressional Black Caucus so quiet? Keith Ellison maybe? Shouldn't the CBC, with it's origins in the civil rights struggles be uniquely sensitive to the spectacle of kangaroo court-ism, the presumption of guilt and this wholly un-American idea that the accused must "prove his innocence"?

To all the men (and women who care about them): You should take names of every public official who fails to uphold the founding principles of the country:

The presumption of innocence.
The right of the accused to face his or her accuser.
The burden of proof on the state/accuser.
And put them out of office.

Monday, September 17, 2018

3 Great Untruths

An excellent podcast from The Art of Manliness

Dear Black Folks: This Is Hileah

[Be warned: Salty language ahead] When I heard about the incident at the Taco Bell in Hileah Florida, I assumed that the customers were white. It was later that I discovered they were black. I'm glad it was the case. I'm not saying that white people should be discriminated against but generally speaking, it is white people who are fucking up the country by making government decisions based on feelings of white guilt and a determination to not be labeled racist, even if that means..fucking up the country.

Black people, on the other hand, specifically Black Americans of slave-era stock have been on some revenge fantasies in which they take up whatever positions they think fuck with of fuck up white people. Not thinking long term, these decisions have been leading to all kinds of bad things. One, in particular, is the displacement of blacks by Hispanics in many neighborhoods. Also, the displacement of blacks in low skill/low wage jobs by Hispanics. Whole neighborhoods have been cleansed of blacks. There are many reports of people, Americans, who cannot get jobs because they do not speak Spanish. In fucking America.

But you know what? I'm not sorry for these folks anymore. Not one bit. Vote Democrat, year after year. Decade after decade. And what did they get? The first black president who was so unconcerned with the plight of black folks that he allowed a company in his own home state, his own home TOWN, to hire illegal workers for his entire two terms. And in the first term of Trump's presidency, the illegal workers were largely gone with black people getting the jobs. And still. And STILL I gotta listen to folks tell me how Trump is a danger to black folks. It what world?

You wanna see the threat to black folks? Welcome to Hileah!:

About 89 percent of its residents speak Spanish as their first or second language and more than 94 percent consider themselves Hispanic or Latino, according to the 2010 census.
See there was a time when black folks couldn't expect to be served in parts of the country. Welcome back to THAT SHIT. And you keep voting for the people who let this happen. And understand, this is not the only place in the country where no English is becoming normal. We have places where government business is done in languages other than English even though English proficiency is a requirement of citizenship. We have many cases of people running for office who say one thing to the English speakers and an entirely different thing to whatever language "constituency" they are seeking votes from. They are usually secure in the fact that the English speakers will never know what was said and that their fellow "linguist" will not "betray" them by pointing out the message.

So nope. Not even sorry for these folks (and others) who continue to vote for people who are fucking up the country and then get bit by the same policies. And that worker who was fired? Likely to be back once the media attention is gone (or will be hired elsewhere) because these folks aren't stupid, they support their own.

Democrats Reach New Low

So Last week Sen. Dianne Feinstein dropped an anonymous letter on the SCOTUS hearing with charges of sexual assault from 35 years ago when Kavanaugh was 17 years old and in high school. This "shadow of Thomas" was a new low in the escapades of Democrats (and Republicans who should know better).

Allegedly Feinstein had this letter for at least 2 months. If Democrats were so concerned with "protecting women" and whatnot, why did she wait 2 months to drop this? And what exactly was to be expected? Generally speaking, crimes committed by minors are sealed and usually have no bearing on anything that person does as an adult. Generally speaking, we do not hold adults responsible for things they did as minors because we do not expect minors to have the same responsible judgment as adults. However; since there was no charge brought at the time, or near the time, there is no criminal case that could be pursued. Furthermore, any civil case would be hard to prove, even on the lower "more likely than not" because it was 35 years ago. Exactly what evidence is going to be presented?

None. That's what.

This is what happens when "allegation culture" becomes the norm. Now anyone, but lets be real here, any man is liable to have any interaction with any female become a potential ticking time bomb waiting to go off when he becomes rich [enough] or famous [enough] and may have [political] views that the female in question does not like.

This is extremely dangerous ground. This cannot be understated. This should not be allowed to happen under the principle of fairness. Are we seriously going to accept a standard where someone's childhood can be mined for behavior for extortion (that's what it is) 30 to 40 years later?

And this right here:

….As the story snowballed, Ford said, she heard people repeating inaccuracies about her and, with the visits from reporters, felt her privacy being chipped away. Her calculation changed. “These are all the ills that I was trying to avoid,” she said, explaining her decision to come forward. “Now I feel like my civic responsibility is outweighing my anguish and terror about retaliation.”
She felt her privacy being chipped away? Really? Fuck her. This woman thought that she could just up and smear someone with allegations she knows cannot be proven and expect him to be the only person who has to deal with fallout? She thinks she should be immune from scrutiny? She's supposed to walk around in anonymity while Kavanaugh is called everything this side of the devil incarnate? That's a whole lot of entitlement.

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Dealing with Confirmation Bias

The Dalai Lama Is Garvey's Ghost

From France 24:
Speaking at a conference in Sweden's third-largest city of Malmo, home to a large immigrant population, the Dalai Lama -- who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989 -- said Europe was "morally responsible" for helping "a refugee really facing danger against their life".

"Receive them, help them, educate them... but ultimately they should develop their own country,"...

"I think Europe belongs to the Europeans," he said, adding they should make clear to refugees that "they ultimately should rebuild their own country".

Marcus seh:
Africa for the African, Europe for the European, Asia for the Asian.

The Least Attractive And The Worst Off

Back is 2014 there was an article in Psychology Today onthe attractiveness of black women in general. It used to be here: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-scientific-fundamentalist/201105/why-are-black-women-rated-less-physically-attractive-other That page is a 404 error now. Perhaps it has been disappeared like other items on the internet of late. The followup piece still exists though. The general finding being:

At the time I objected to the conclusions because I objected to the way the survey was done. It claimed objectivity when attractiveness is clearly subject, in part to the culture one is raised in. For example, finding large(r) women more attractive than thin(er) women. That said though, even across cultures there are common themes of attractiveness. Symmetry of facial features and a general "feminine" face for whatever race that person belongs to. But still it comes down to the beholder or in the dating world, the chooser. When you live in a multi-racial society, then you're subject to the standards of other people when they are choosing with whom to mate. You cannot get mad when you are NOT what they want. So now the economist goes and posts an article that underscores the conclusion of the original Psych Today piece:

Once again black women find themselves at the bottom of the desirability scale. Mind you that's not the same as "attractiveness" scale since one can be attractive but not desirable (i.e.: you smoke). Of particular interest though is that "Hispanic" females rate the second highest, behind Asian women who have historically been on the pedestal as "most feminine". Since "Hispanic" can be of any or combination of races, it would be interesting to see *what phenotype* of Hispanic female this represents. Given that white women are ranked closely behind, I'm going to go out on a limb and say that these Hispanic females are not "indios" or "Afro-latinas" of the very dark skin type. Speaking of, I'd also like to see the breakdown of the "black women" category. How many of the low scoring black women were light skinned?

Lest you think this post to be about the woes of black women, you'd be wrong. What actually jumped out at me was this:

Men on Tantan, he says, tend to like about 60% of all the female profiles they see, but women like just 6% of the male ones. The least attractive women receive similar levels of attention to the most attractive men, says Mr Wang; all can find someone reasonably attractive. Men at the bottom of the ladder end up completely matchless. This fits with the work by Ms Bruch and Mr Newman. In general, both men and women concentrate on people that the common opinion of the site rates as 25% more attractive than they are. Even for women not seen as desirable, that can work. For the least desirable men, nothing works. “I don’t expect that final 5% to be that easy to help,” says Mr Wang.
Socially this is probably a larger problem. Women of all levels of attractiveness get more attention than the least attractive men. But men at the very bottom of attractiveness get nothing. We have had recent shootings in which frustration of not being able to get/keep women are expressed by the shooter. 5% may not seem like a large number but in a population of 300 million, half of which are men, it's 7.5 million men. If even only 1% of them act out on their frustrations...

How ridiculous is it that women (at least online) only consider 6% of males? Clearly then, the "apex males" are getting a lot of attention from (and access to) women "10" on down while the women across the stratum are getting attention from most males but denying access to 94% of them. Will we see more "incel" violence in the future?

Monday, September 10, 2018

The Real Reason For Land "Redistribution" in South Africa

While the idea of reclaiming land in South Africa is not new (or original) to South Africa, one has to wonder why this has moved front and center. We saw that Zimbabwe ramped up it's efforts at land redistribution as a means of propping up Mugabe during the election [sic] where he had serious challenges to his party. With this in mind two things:

First Employment

The world’s biggest unemployment crisis is right here in South Africa‚ according to economist Mike Schussler.

Delivering the UASA trade union’s 17th South African Employment Report (SAER)‚ he said the number of unemployed had increased from 6-million to 9.6-million between 2001 and 2018.

This was a 60% increase in the broader rate of unemployment‚ which had had a devastating effect on inequality and poverty in the country‚ said Schussler.

“South Africa is one of the few countries in the world where there are more adults not at work than adults at work.

Pretty bad isn't it. Idle hands. Idle hands.
To attempt to solve the problem of unemployment‚ Schussler said accelerated economic growth was the only sustainable way to tackle it.

“No country in the world can tell its citizens that there will be massive unemployment for decades to come.”

Or tell them that the problem is farmlands owned by the minority population...

Second: Xenophobia: In what is a cut nose, spite face, kind of report:

Immigrant-owned shops, belonging to people from Somalia, Bangladesh, China and Pakistan, have been closed since Monday last week after they were looted by residents protesting over poor services from the Lesedi municipality. “We are trying to come up with a solution … The majority of community members say they will starve if the Somali shops remain closed,” said Sibanyoni.

Many in the Ratanda community rely on foreign-owned shops. Now they have to travel further afield.

“Travelling all the way to town to buy bread or a cold drink is absurd. People should swallow their pride and allow the Somalis to operate,” said Mojabang Radebe, a salon owner.

It sure is absurd. I mean, why open your own shops rather than wait for immigrants/foreigners to do it?
Some residents were xenophobic. They said foreigners should leave the community permanently. “They should give us some space to breathe. Everywhere you go there is a Somali, Pakistani or Chinese shop. We are tired of them,” said Bafana Khumalo. He operates a shisa nyama stand next to a Somali-owned shop in Ratanda extension 7. Khumalo said: “The problem is that they sell expired tinned food and fake goods. After that, they expect the community to be quiet. l think it’s a good thing that they be permanently removed from our area.”
Again, why not open your own shops? I mean how is it that foreigners have so much retail power in your own country?
Thabo Mokoena, living in Ratanda extension 23, said, “Their [immigrants] problem is that they do not create job opportunities for us. Why do they not teach us the same business skills so we can fend for ourselves … They only care for themselves. They do not bank money; at least that way they would be taxed in order to help the economy.”
Give us [enter thing you should be doing for self]! Expecting foreigners who open up shop to make money off of you, to "care" about you further than your ability to transfer wealth to them is stupid.

But yo! If you get those farmers....

Thursday, September 06, 2018

Woodward and The New York Times Reveal The Deep State

Up until this week, those of us who discussed the fact that there is an unelected "cabal" of Washington insiders who set and enforce policies that are for their own interests rather than that of the people via their elected officials, were dismissed as conspiracy theorists. As of this week none other than mainstream persons and agencies have revealed that such dismissals to be the distractions that they were intended to be. Without a doubt, we can now say the Deep State exists and it is entirely against the will of the will of the electorate as expressed in the Nov 2016 election. First lets look at the anonymous insider published by the NY Times:
The dilemma — which he does not fully grasp — is that many of the senior officials in his own administration are working diligently from within to frustrate parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations.
Firstly I'll say this directly to Mr. Trump:

That's what you get.

Many of your supporters have written that you have surrounded yourself with vipers who are either in it for their own gain (financial and otherwise) or who are, as this person said, hell bent on derailing your agenda. These persons include Ivanka and Jared but are not limited to those persons. You have made poor decisions on who to trust (for reasons only you really know) and it is reflected in many ways. So this entire situation is an own goal.

That said, we, the electorate, the citizenry, regardless of party should be VERY bothered by the idea that an unelected employee of the executive branch, who ultimately works for us has taken upon his or herself to determine what part(s) of the president's agenda (which was approved of by the citizenry via our electoral process) should and should not be enacted.

Fuck that person.

So long as said policies are not unconstitutional or illegal, that person has no rights whatsoever to obstruct the will of the electorate. I don't care if this was Trump or Obama or Bush. If this person felt that they could not in good conscience carry out the orders of the president, he or she should have resigned immediately and gone public. If the actions are so bad, we have a legal and political process by which the people, via their representatives can remove such a bad actor. How dare these persons who claim to be acting in the best interests of the country, bypass the very institutions we have to deal with these issues.

That is why many Trump appointees have vowed to do what we can to preserve our democratic institutions while thwarting Mr. Trump’s more misguided impulses until he is out of office.
The "do what we can" is a link to Woodward's book. I'll get to points of that later, but I question the entire "democratic institutions" argument when their actions in fact undermine the democratic institutions which they claim to uphold. Never mind that there is no specific example of "democratic institutions" given.
The root of the problem is the president’s amorality. Anyone who works with him knows he is not moored to any discernible first principles that guide his decision making.
It is entirely possible that Trump is amoral, defined as: unconcerned with the rightness or wrongness of something. I doubt that though. It think that Trump has a set of morals that differ from those who are in this "resistance". Since calling Trump "immoral" would probably lead to libel or defamation, I think the "amoral" charge was the safest charge to make. However; I still think that this "amorality" charge is one of actual "differences in philosophy" rather than I don't care about right or wrong. And if I am correct, then this underscores the charge that these people are substituting their wishes and "morality" on the rest of us in stark contradiction to the wishes of the people as expressed in the election. This is NOT "protecting democratic institutions".
Although he was elected as a Republican, the president shows little affinity for ideals long espoused by conservatives: free minds, free markets and free people. At best, he has invoked these ideals in scripted settings. At worst, he has attacked them outright.
This statement here represents why this individual and others in his or her group should be removed from whatever positions of power they have. Anyone who has followed the public moods since the election of Obama, knows full well that the reason Trump won was specifically because he was NOT a Republican. He ran as a Republican because that was the path best suited to him just as Bloomberg did his fake Republican thing to get into office in NYC.

Furthermore, the large portion of Trump supporters do not care for Republicans. Not. One. Bit. If you live under the Democratic rock you may not know this. There is a reason why many Republicans and "Conservative" organizations are called "Conservative Inc.". They are seen as a wholly occupied party that are not actual conservatives because these conservatives have conserved nothing at all. They couldn't even keep marriage as defined as between a man and woman. That's some basic shit for a "conservative movement". These conservatives are merely Liberals of a few decades ago. Much of the Trump supporting electorate know this and they believe (rightly or wrongly) that Trump knows this and that is why he is in office and not Clinton or Jeb!

If this is the "amorality" then these people do not only have a problem with Trump, but they have a problem with half the country. They are, indeed undoing the duly elected wishes of the country. Isn't this treason? Seriously.

In addition to his mass-marketing of the notion that the press is the “enemy of the people,” President Trump’s impulses are generally anti-trade and anti-democratic.
If we needed any more proof that this is really about Democrats (and Republican "Conservative Inc. types) trying to undo an election, this is it. Trump may get the media attention for saying the press is the "enemy of the people" but it is not just Trump saying this. Again this is a feeling (and a fact) of many of his supporters. The media has set a new high water of antagonism against a president unseen in my lifetime (I am not young). The media has gone out of it's way to deem anyone who is not in agreement with Liberal policies as white supremacist (etc. To the extent to doxing people. It has covered up rank political violence against non-liberals by groups such as Antifa and has conspired with social media companies to deplatform and censor non-liberal voices in public social media spaces.

Secondly, To paint Trump, an international business man as "anti-trade" has to be the most ridiculous thing I've read. Trump made his money on trade. How do you think those hotels and condos were built? It takes a special kind of stupid to state that Trump the international business man, is against trade. He appears to believe that tariffs against countries he believes to be ripping off the US would address the very real drop in manufacturing, etc. in America. He may be wrong on that, he may be right on that. That is a political decision and political risk. It is not the place of non-elected groups to decide this.

To the charge of "anti-democratic", the writer has leveled no specific charge. His lashing out at a press that has been proven to be generally hostile to him, is not "anti-democratic". He doesn't lose HIS first amendment rights just because he is in office. Name a single thing Trump has done thus far on the domestic front that is "anti-democratic" and/or outside the bounds of the constitution.

But these successes have come despite — not because of — the president’s leadership style, which is impetuous, adversarial, petty and ineffective.
I don't know how Trump behaves in office. But "petty" is a judgement call. And seeing what is being written this week, I have reason to believe that this pettiness is warranted. Perhaps Trump sees that he has snakes around and it bothers him. But that's his own fault. As for it's effectiveness, it is little wonder that it is "ineffective" when the people tasked with carrying out his decisions are busy doing whatever it is they think should be done. A house divided against itself cannot stand.
From the White House to executive branch departments and agencies, senior officials will privately admit their daily disbelief at the commander in chief’s comments and actions. Most are working to insulate their operations from his whims. Meetings with him veer off topic and off the rails, he engages in repetitive rants, and his impulsiveness results in half-baked, ill-informed and occasionally reckless decisions that have to be walked back. “There is literally no telling whether he might change his mind from one minute to the next,” a top official complained to me recently, exasperated by an Oval Office meeting at which the president flip-flopped on a major policy decision he’d made only a week earlier.
Without knowing what specific "policy decisions" are being discussed, I cannot make an informed commentary on how bad or good this is. I can say that I've seen some bad policy decisions made such as the bombing of Syria based on some picture of a dead kid and unproven charges of use of chemical weapons in Syria, a country allied with a nuclear power. But that decision was cheered all around. I could also cite the trespass (migrant) crisis which was wholly manufactured with aide from agencies in the US (who should be charged). The flip flop on detention in the face of a photo of a crying kid, which turned out to be literal fake news, is another example which I too, fault Trump. But I think many flip flops are due to the vipers in his circle. So I'll agree with anonymous here that Trump has many self owns, but we should be given examples so we can judge for ourselves.
Take foreign policy: In public and in private, President Trump shows a preference for autocrats and dictators, such as President Vladimir Putin of Russia and North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-un, and displays little genuine appreciation for the ties that bind us to allied, like-minded nations.
This is another clear example of Deep State. This so called "Preference for autocrats" is really not their business. First of all, North Korea is not a threat oto the US. Period. The US has been provoking Russia for decades now with the expansion of NATO and the fomenting of Color Revolutions in former Soviet block countries, most recently Ukraine. Many of the electorate have had enough of this world wide mischief making. We want an end to the provocations with Russia and the money involved in doing so. We also believe that South Korea, a very rich country should defend itself against North Korea and wonder why we are still there. Secondly, we have seen that the way things have been done so far has not lead to an end of conflict with North Korea so why not do something very different? Why do we have to be antagonistic to Kim and Putin? Is this some law that we are not aware of? No, this is a case of Deep State operatives wanting to make sure that their preferred means of doing things remain unthreatened.
The bigger concern is not what Mr. Trump has done to the presidency but rather what we as a nation have allowed him to do to us. We have sunk low with him and allowed our discourse to be stripped of civility.
Once again this shows a clear "we didn't like the election outcome" reasoning behind the letter. Trump has not done anything "to us". The media sat by silent as Trump supporters were literally assaulted for trying to attend rallies. It was Democrats, Hillary in particular who called Trump supporters a "basket of deplorables". Any desire of the citizens to have their borders secured has been labelled nazism and white nationalism by people who wouldn't allow people to trespass on their private property. The constant vilification, censorship and violence engaged in by the Left (and covered up by the media) is not what Trump has done to the country but what the Deep State has done to the country. And if they think that by removing Trump from office that some "civility" is going to re-appear, they are in for a rude awakening.

Now lets get to Woodward.

WASHINGTON — President Trump so alarmed his defense secretary, Jim Mattis, during a discussion last January of the nuclear standoff with North Korea that an exasperated Mr. Mattis told colleagues “the president acted like — and had the understanding of — a ‘fifth or sixth grader.’”
It's September. We're all here. Trump met Kim. Kim did some walking around in South Korea and Singapore. Hasn't happened before. I remember when everyone was saying that the end was near. They were shocked that Kim relented (or seemed to). I knew then as I know now that there are ways you deal with bullies (which Kim is). Trump knows that as well. I figured his way would work. A lot of people said it was childish. Thus far, it's worked. It may not in the long term, but then again, nothing else has either. Point being that what actually bothered Kelly was that someone not doing what was normally done. This is why we say "Deep State". They expect every president, etc. to do what the Deep State says should be done (because they know best). Trump is the first president since.... to not only ask "why should I?" but to do what he thinks should be done. Deep State is not used to that.
At another moment, Mr. Trump’s aides became so worried about his judgment that Gary D. Cohn, then the chief economic adviser, took a letter from the president’s Oval Office desk authorizing the withdrawal of the United States from a trade agreement with South Korea. Mr. Trump, who had planned to sign the letter, never realized it was missing.
First, I'm glad Cohn is gone. If he committed a crime by removing the papers from the executive he should be prosecuted. It was not his place to remove the paper from Trump's desk. During the campaign Trump made many comments about South Korea. The people who elected him knew his position on South Korea. By meddling with Trump's trade decision vis-a-vis South Korea, Cohn took it upon himself to undo the democratic will of the people and substituted his own. Maybe Trump's policy would have lead to a better trade agreement. Maybe not. It was NOT Cohn's decision to make. We did no elect him.

Cohn's actions underscores the fact that Trump has vipers in his circle.

In the North Korea meeting, during a period of high tension with the country’s leader, Kim Jong-un, Mr. Trump questioned Mr. Mattis about why the United States keeps a military presence on the Korean Peninsula. “We’re doing this in order to prevent World War III,” Mr. Mattis responded, according to Mr. Woodward.
That was total bullshit answer by Mattis. The US has been in a state of war with North Korea for 50 odd years. In that time we have developed this thing called "satellite" that allows us to look any and everywhere within the limits of technology. Those troops on the border to 'prevent NOKO from invading SOKO" is all show. South Koreans can do that themselves. We know they have the tech and manpower.
In April 2017, after President Bashar al-Assad of Syria launched a chemical attack on his own people, Mr. Trump called Mr. Mattis and told him that he wanted the United States to assassinate Mr. Assad. “Let’s go in,” the president said, adding a string of expletives.
Oh I believe this happened. This is why I brought up Ivanka and Jared. The vipers have had it in for Assad for a long time. That there were not real allies in office to underscore that Assad is fighting Al-Qaeda and therefore we should mind our business and not get sucked in by the propaganda of the "white helmets" is why Trump made that dumb as shit demand. Many of Trump's supporters disagreed and disagree with the US involvement in Syria and see it as highly influenced by Israel.
Mr. Cohn, Mr. Woodward said, concluded that Mr. Trump was a “professional liar.”
Trump is a saleman. His life is negotiations. In negotiations you make offers that you don't necessarily actually indent to abide by. For example, car salesman says that the bottom line is $1500. They actually mean $1000 but they want to induce you to accept the deal that is better for the car salesman. That $1500 is a lie. Flat out. negotiators lie for a living. This is why you must understand the "art of the deal" in order to deal with salespersons. Most importantly, such sales techniques are rarely personal in nature. The process is adversarial. Sound familiar? This goes back to the beginning of the piece where anonymous says that Trump is amoral and antagonistic. That is the world that he became a success in. The voters ALSO knew that when they picked him over all other Republican candidates and Clinton. We should consider whether Trump's position as "liar" is actually a plus in light of how some cultures work:
For one example of where it has not fully taken root, social anthropologist Roberto DaMatta sums up his country, Brazil: If I am buying from or selling to a relative, I neither seek profit nor concern myself with money. The same can happen in a transaction with a friend. But, if I am dealing with a stranger, then there are no rules, other than the one of exploiting him to the utmost. underlines original
Trump has repeatedly stated his view that the US has been taken advantage of in [recent] trade negotiations. Perhaps he is actually right and we [being the general public] are too gullible to know or to "rule bound" to do anything about it. Or maybe Trump is wrong. He was elected to try his way by the citizenry via our democratic process. It's not the place of Cohn to obstruct that.

In the end the only thing presented here that remotely bothers me about Trump is his alleged desire to assassinate Assad. The US has a non-assassination policy, particularly as it applies to heads of state. We'll just overlook Obama's weekly kill list for the time being. The rest of the op-ed and the examples from the book indicate a set of unelected persons who disagree with Trump's policies and feel that they have the right to obstruct and interfere with implementation of these policies. That is not "defending democratic institutions" at all. It is deep state and they admit it.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Does That Really Mean Schools Are Failing

Also from City Journal:
Carranza made it clear before he arrived that his principal interest is ethnic equilibrium in the nation’s largest public school system, not achieving positive, across-the-board performance outcomes. The system has some bright spots—they’re moving center stage as the chancellor’s obsession with “integration” unfolds—but New York’s schools in general are a mess. As recently as two years ago, 420 of the city’s 525 high schools had prepared fewer than half of their graduates for college or a career.
I'm not going to get into the "ethnic equilibrium" part of quote but I was surprised that the usually critical people at City-Journal wrote about "fewer than half" their graduates as if that is necessarily a problem. It probably is NOT.

The public school system is required by law to enroll every and all students regardless of ability. Private schools may pick and choose who they may enroll. Often these schools have IQ tests called "entrance exams". This allows them to enroll students with above average intelligence which is a prerequisite to performing at a level that is required for college.

Since public schools cannot skim the "cream" of students and often have the cream of the student population removed from their populations, they have less students who have the necessary intelligence to qualify for college than that of private schools.

Anyone familiar with the bell curve distribution of intelligence knows that half the population falls below 100 and generally for college one should be at 105 or so. The hard sciences usually require something closer to 110 and often go above as you head into the nether regions. Only about 25% of the population actually meets this requirement. knowing this, is the fact that half the students from the NYS public school system, which is comprised largely of students from populations with statistically low average IQ's do not graduate able to do college level work? And we're not talking about the multiplying remedial classes that are offered in colleges.

Perhaps what we should be doing is focusing on alternate paths for people who simply are not college material and stop glorifying college as the end all and be all for everybody. People's value to society should not be based on whether they have a college degree and we certainly have use for people who work with their hands and backs more than their fingers. Oh and stop diluting the significance of a college degree by handing them out to unqualified students given inflated grades and junk degrees for "reasons".

Rethinking Medicare For All

I've long been a supporter of single payer healthcare. I believe(d) that the proposals to simply extend medicare to all citizens was the best way to do this. The idea being that it was the least disruptive proposal. It already met constitutional muster and the institutions needed to run it already existed even if there was a need for expansion. Also, this would relieve private businesses from paying for and administrating health insurance plans, which makes up a significant portion of employee "salaries and benefits". This would be, in effect, a tax cut for businesses. I did propose that corp taxes should go up a bit to cover the cost of expansion, but not to the extent that it wiped out the cost savings of no longer being responsible for healthcare for it's employees.

Yesterday I read an article in City-Journal that has me rethinking this.

First, I had no idea how medicare actually worked. I suspect most people who are not retired don't either:

hospitalization in Medicare Part A includes a $1,340 deductible for each benefit period. It imposes no coinsurance on the first 60 days of hospitalization, but a charge of $335 per day between 61 and 90 days in the hospital, and a charge of $670 per day over 90 days. Part B, the medical part of Medicare, includes a $183 yearly deducible and requires the patient to pay 20 percent of the Medicare-approved amount.

Part A, hospitalization, has no monthly cost, but Parts B and D, the medical and drug portions, demand monthly premiums just like any private insurance program. The monthly amount varies with income: retirees today pay $134 a month, on average. But with no copays or deductibles, plus the added benefits that Sanders’s bill seeks, those monthly premiums would surely rise, not least because working people have higher incomes than retirees. It is guesswork to put a figure on how much these costs would go up, though the current Medicare premium for those who want it—but have paid into the system for less than seven-and-a-half years—is $422 a month. And that’s for Medicare as it presently exists, not for the proposed luxury version

Well, that's not "free healthcare, is it"? Also:
Medicare presently covers some 58 million people in one or more of its plans. The government last year spent $597 billion on these beneficiaries, representing about 14 percent of all government spending, and generating 3 percent of economic activity. Had the country extended coverage to all 323 million Americans in 2017, it would have cost Washington more than $2.6 trillion, almost 65 percent of the total budget, and over 75 percent of government revenues for the year.
Oh.

Clearly there is no way to "tax the rich" to pay for this. No seriously. There is no way to pay for this by "taxing the rich". If you tax the rich to the point that they are no longer "rich", then there goes your government income.

Of course the next juicy target would be the military. Good luck getting any huge military budget cut through congress. So for those of us who do believe that a single payer system would be good would do well to bone up on the numbers.