Saturday, 25 June 2022

Daniel K. Williams, Defenders of the Unborn

Catch up on the origins of the pro-life movement in wake of today's ruling overturning Roe v. Wade.

See, Daniel K. Williams, Defenders of the Unborn: The Pro-Life Movement before Roe v. Wade.

Friday, 24 June 2022

ROE V. WADE OVERTURNED! Supreme Court Ends Constitutional Right to Abortion (VIDEO)

The day has come. The Sword of Damocles has crashed down on the constitutional right to an abortion. The Court's decision is the most consequential in generations, and will make the abortion issue even more contentious and controversial than it's been already.

But contra the Democrats, especially President Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, it's doubtful that "abortion will be on the ballot" this fall. Bread and butter issues, kitchen table issues, will be on the ballot, and what better way for the radical Democrat Party to try to change the subject, try to turn the page on the misery the great majority of Americans are feeling amid the worst economy since the 1980s. 

It's a big day. 

At the Los Angeles Times, "In historic reversal, Supreme Court overturns Roe vs. Wade, frees states to outlaw abortion: The ruling marks the most significant curtailing of an established constitutional right in the Supreme Court’s history":

WASHINGTON — In a historic reversal, the Supreme Court on Friday overturned the landmark 1973 Roe vs. Wade decision and ruled states may again outlaw abortion.

The court’s conservative majority said the Constitution does not protect the rights of women to choose abortion and instead leaves these decisions in the hands of state lawmakers.

The 5-4 ruling marks the most significant curtailing of an established constitutional right in the court’s history.

The opinion written by Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. closely tracks a draft that was leaked by Politico in May.

“We hold that Roe and [the 1992 Planned Parenthood vs.] Casey must be overruled,” Alito wrote. “The Constitution makes no reference to abortion, and no such right is implicitly protected by any constitutional provision, including the one on which the defenders of Roe and Casey now chiefly rely — the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment.”

The opinion was joined by Justices Clarence Thomas, Neil M. Gorsuch, Brett M. Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett.

Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. concurred but did not join the majority opinion in overturning Roe, saying he would have upheld only a Mississippi 15-week ban on abortion. That made the decision to uphold Mississippi’s law a 6-3 opinion.

“The court’s decision to overrule Roe and Casey is a serious jolt to the legal system,” Roberts wrote.

The court’s three liberal justices — Justice Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan — dissented.

“Today, the court ... says that from the very moment of fertilization, a woman has no rights to speak of,” their dissent read. “A state can force her to bring a pregnancy to term, even at the steepest personal and familial costs.”

The dissenting justices concluded, “Whatever the exact scope of the coming laws, one result of today’s decision is certain: the curtailment of women’s rights, and of their status as free and equal citizens.”

The ruling figures to set off a fierce political fight nationwide and state by state as politicians and voters weigh in on whether abortion should be restricted or prohibited entirely.

Opinion polls show most Americans support access to abortion, at least in the early months of a pregnancy. Nevertheless, half the states are expected to seek to quickly enforce laws that make most abortions illegal.

The decision is the high court’s most far-reaching reversal on a matter of constitutional rights since 1954, when the justices reversed six decades of precedent and struck down laws authorizing racial segregation.

But that unanimous decision in Brown vs. Board of Education expanded the rights of individuals and rejected conservative state laws, while today’s does the opposite. It empowers states and reverses what had been the most significant women’s rights ruling in the court’s history.

For the U.S. Catholic bishops as well as evangelical Christians who believe abortion ends a human life and is immoral, the ruling is a triumph decades in the making. They had refused to accept the idea the Constitution protected abortion as a fundamental right...

Keep reading.

 

Rosa Brooks, Tangled Up in Blue

See, Rosa Brooks, Tangled Up in Blue: Policing the American City.

Wednesday, 22 June 2022

Mark Bowden, Tet 1968

 From the author of Black Hawk Down, a finalist for the 1999 National Book Award.

See, Mark Bowden, Hue 1968: A Turning Point of the American War in Vietnam.

Georgia Election Worker Shaye Moss Terrorized by Trump Followers After 2020 Election (VIDEO)

Here, "Georgia Election Worker Shaye Moss, And Her Mother and Grandmother, Terrorized by Trump Followers After 2020 Election (VIDEO)."

*****

Citizens' fear from the repercussion of voting isn't a thing I've ever contemplated. I always thought the intimidation and violence of Southern Blacks was historical, like marchers being beaten on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Alabama during the King Years.

It's cliche at this point to say American politics is ugly and vicious. I know personally from the left's lying, low-down attempts to cancel me, to get me fired ten years ago from my teaching position, that ideological hate drives political polarization. I was physically attacked when I covered the Hamas/International ANSWER demonstrations in Los Angeles. I finally quit reporting them, it got so bad. You get a target on your back.

But I've never been targeted at my home. I've never had to relocate to a safe house for months because of my politics and teaching. Imagine the nightmare that Shaye Moss and her family have been living since November 2020, when President Trump called her out by name during his efforts to overturn the Georgia election results. His words set off mobs of MAGA supporters on campaigns of terror. I want to continue loving President Trump for his time in office before the 2020 election. But everything that happened after that makes me sick. 

The more I see of it, of Trump's very own words, on audio and video, broken down and put in context, makes me hope that he's not the GOP nominee in 2024. Right now I favor Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, and pray to God he wins and that the conservative movement can start over and rebuild under new leadership. 

There's too much hate in this country. Had not the "Big Lie" taken over Republican politics after the election, and had not January 6th not happened, I'd be the world's biggest supporter for Trump 2024. Now I just can't.

The story's at the New York Times, "‘There Is Nowhere I Feel Safe’: Election Officials Describe Threats Fueled by Trump":

“Do you know how it feels to have the president of the United States target you?’’ Ruby Freeman, a Black election worker from Georgia, told the Jan. 6 committee.

WASHINGTON — Rusty Bowers, the Republican speaker of Arizona’s House, braced every weekend for hordes of Trump supporters, some with weapons, who swarmed his home and blared videos that called him a pedophile.

“We had a daughter who was gravely ill, who was upset by what was happening outside,” he said. She died not long after, in late January 2021.

Gabriel Sterling, a top state election official in Georgia, recalled receiving an animated picture of a slowly twisting noose along with a note accusing him of treason. His boss, Georgia’s secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, recounted that Trump supporters broke into his widowed daughter-in-law’s house and threatened his wife with sexual violence.

And Wandrea Moss and her mother, Ruby Freeman, two Black women who served as election workers during the pandemic in Georgia, suffered an onslaught of racist abuse and were driven into hiding after Rudolph W. Giuliani, President Donald J. Trump’s lawyer, lied that they had rigged the election against Mr. Trump.

“I’ve lost my name and I’ve lost my reputation,” Ms. Freeman said, adding as her voice rose with emotion, “Do you know how it feels to have the president of the United States target you?”

Election official after election official testified to the House Jan. 6 committee on Tuesday in searing, emotional detail how Mr. Trump and his aides unleashed violent threats and vengeance on them for refusing to cave to his pressure to overturn the election in his favor.

The testimony showed how Mr. Trump and his aides encouraged his followers to target election officials in key states — even going so far as to post their personal cellphone numbers on Mr. Trump’s social media channels, which the committee cited as a particularly brutal effort by the president to cling to power....

Ms. Moss, who goes by Shaye, and her mother became the targets of Trump supporters after Mr. Giuliani falsely accused them in a Georgia State Senate hearing of passing around USB drives like “vials of heroin or cocaine” to steal the election from Mr. Trump.

What her mother actually handed her, Ms. Moss testified on Tuesday, was a ginger mint candy.

But Mr. Giuliani’s claim — later elevated by Mr. Trump himself, who referred to Ms. Moss by name more than a dozen times in a call with Mr. Raffensperger — tore across far-right circles of the internet. Soon after, the F.B.I. informed Ms. Freeman that it was no longer safe for her to stay at her house.

The urgency of that warning became clear after Trump supporters showed up at the door of Ms. Moss’s grandmother. They forced their way into her home, claiming they were there to make a citizen’s arrest of her granddaughter.

“This woman is my everything,” Ms. Moss testified about her grandmother. “I’ve never even heard her or seen her cry ever in my life, and she called me screaming at the top of her lungs.”

While in hiding, Ms. Moss and Ms. Freeman continued to face threats explicitly invoking their race, including a comment that Ms. Moss and her mother should “be glad it’s 2020 and not 1920.”

“A lot of them were racist,” Ms. Moss said. “A lot of them were just hateful.”

Both women testified that nearly two years later, they were still haunted by the threat of violence. Ms. Moss recalled listening to the audio tape of Mr. Trump attacking her and her mother and immediately feeling “like it was all my fault.”

“I just felt bad for my mom, and I felt horrible for picking this job,” she testified, growing emotional. “And being the one that always wants to help and always there, never missing not one election. I just felt like it was — it was my fault for putting my family in this situation.”

“It wasn’t your fault,” Representative Adam B. Schiff, Democrat of California, quietly responded from the dais.

Ms. Freeman testified that she no longer went to the grocery store, and felt nervous every time she gave her name — once proudly worn bedazzled on T-shirts — for food orders.

“There is nowhere I feel safe,” Ms. Freeman testified. “The president of the United States is supposed to represent every American. Not to target one.”

Nathaniel C. Fick, One Bullet Away

See, Nathaniel C. Fick, One Bullet Away: The Making of a Marine Officer.

Sunday, 19 June 2022

Germany Reboots Coal-Fired Plants Amid Russia-Ukraine Energy Shocks

This is a tough time for the climate change cult.

Reality's punching through their worldview of unicorns, rainbows, and electric cars.

At the Wall Street Journal, "Germany Steps Up Measures to Conserve Gas as Russia Slows Supply to Europe":

Berlin to restart coal-fired plants and auction gas to reduce consumption.

Gazprom has blamed the shortfall on missing turbine parts that were stuck in Canada due to sanctions. European officials and analysts dismissed the explanation.

Germany imports about 35% of its natural gas from Russia, down from 55% before the war, and uses most of it for heating and manufacturing, according to German government estimates. Last year, power generation using natural gas accounted for about 15% of total public electricity in Germany, Mr. Habeck said, adding that the share of gas in power production has likely fallen this year.

To accelerate the decline of gas in the power mix, Mr. Habeck outlined a number of steps the government was taking to reduce reliance on gas and build up stores for the coming winter.

In a U-turn for a leader of the environmentalist Green Party, which has campaigned to reduce fossil-fuel use, Mr. Habeck said the government would empower utility companies to extend the use of coal-fired power plants.

This would ensure that Germany has an alternative source of energy but would further delay the country’s efforts to slash carbon emissions.

“This is bitter,” Mr. Habeck said of the need to rely on coal. “But in this situation, it is necessary to reduce gas consumption. Gas stores must be full by winter. That has the highest priority.”

The legislation affecting the use of coal is expected to be approved on July 8 in the Bundesrat, the upper house of parliament, Mr. Habeck said. The measure expires on March 31, 2024, by which time the government hopes to have created a sustainable alternative to Russian gas.

Mr. Habeck also said the government would introduce an auction system that would motivate industry to reduce consumption.

The government released no details about how the auction would work, but Mr. Habeck said it would begin this summer.

Mr. Habeck said the new measures are aimed at diverting the dwindling gas deliveries from Russia into storage tanks to be used during the winter.

 

Sohrab Ahmari, The Unbroken Thread

See, Sohrab Ahmari, The Unbroken Thread: Discovering the Wisdom of Tradition in an Age of Chaos.

Sunday, 5 June 2022

Joshua Cohen, The Netanyahus

The 2022 Pulitzer Prize Winner in Fiction, from Joshua Cohen, The Netanyahus: An Account of a Minor and Ultimately Even Negligible Episode in the History of a Very Famous Family.


San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin Likely to Be Recalled Tuesday (VIDEO)

A good overview of the recall election at the Los Angeles Times, and I love the lamentations of the article.

See, "San Francisco’s bitter D.A. recall could set back national justice reform movement."

If Boudin's recall --- which is apparently a near sure-thing --- sets back the "national justice reform movement," then that'll be one of the most significant electoral victories of 2022. 

And Nancy Rommelman, who, according to Reason Magazine, is "a journalist and author based in New York City," has a new on-the-ground report on Substack, here: "Time's Arrow: The Chesa Boudin Recall." 

RTWT. 

Especially good is her email exchange with San Francisco Police Department Patrol Sergeant Adam Plantinga, who in reply listed the reasons he supports Boudin's ouster:

Let me front-load that I'm not a political animal and I'm not an SF voter, so what I say doesn't matter as much as folks who live in the city or who are more plugged in to such matters. But as a San Francisco cop, I am, of course, invested in the outcome.

1. He implemented a policy prohibiting his office (with very few exceptions) from charging cases where the police find contraband during pretextual stops. His reasoning for this was to reduce racial disparities. I believe, as do most working cops, that pretextual stops, when done right (you don't have to treat everyone like John Dillinger), are essential to smart proactive policing and get a lot of bad actors off the street. Criminals don't tend to turn themselves in to you. You have to go find them. And pretextual stops are one of the very best ways to do that. I believe his policy is harmful to public safety.

2. He campaigned on not charging quality-of-life crimes and as far as I know, has been true to his word. I'm not for nickel-and-diming every hobo, for Illegal Lodging, who sets up camp on a public sidewalk, but if there are no teeth to the law, it eliminates an important tool from the cop's tool belt. Wondering if Boudin would feel differently if a transient set up camp in front of Boudin's garage, blocking him from driving to work every day. Maybe he'd just shrug and take the bus. At least then, he'd have the courage of his convictions.

3. His refusal to charge gang enhancements and three strikes. It's no secret that street gangs are behind much of the violent crime in the city and repeat violent felons have proven, time and time again, that they should not be among people. They should be spending their criminally productive years in jail. So let's put them there. An old-fashioned view, to be sure, but I work one of the most violent sections of the city and you see enough blood and brains on the sidewalk, it can get a fella to thinking this way.

4. He has made some highly questionable decisions in charging officers on Use of Force cases (to be fair, he's made some other decisions in charging cops that I don't find unreasonable). On a related note, I am an officer who has over two decades of experience, doesn't rattle much under pressure, and tends to make good decisions in the field, but I have little hope that I would receive a fair shake from Chesa Boudin's office if I were to be involved in a serious Use of Force that resulted in serious injury or death to a suspect. Maybe that's not fair--maybe my case would have a just outcome. But that's how I feel and that's a pretty shitty feeling to be walking around with at work with a gun on your hip and continually having to enter volatile situations to take on people with weapons. I'm not alone in feeling that way.

5. He is a former Public Defender and still clearly has a Public Defender mentality (examples of this abound, including a recent interview where he talked about how a high percentage of drug dealers in SF are being trafficked from Honduras). This makes him the classic fox in the henhouse. What if we flipped things around? I don't imagine the Public Defender's office would be overjoyed in having a former DA head up their office who still had a tough-on-crime DA's attitude. It's a lousy fit in our adversarial criminal justice system.

6. I don't claim to have the insider's view on the DA's office. I know they are understaffed and overworked and plea bargains are essential to making the system go. Cops will probably always feel like the DA's office isn't doing enough and tends to be soft on crime. Many of us felt that way about the last few DAs. But ADAs under Boudin have been leaving in droves, which I find telling, and folks who do have an insider's view, Assistant District Attorneys that I've worked on cases with and respect, including Brooke Jenkins*, Thomas Ostly*, and Shirin Oloumi, have strongly spoken out against Boudin. Their words carry a lot of weight with me.

7. I have yet to meet another police officer who thinks Boudin is the right person for DA. Maybe we're all wrong and Boudin alone is right, the lone prophet in the wilderness, whose genius will not be known in our time. But maybe not.

Friday, 3 June 2022

Tuesday, 31 May 2022

Gal Gadot Too!

 I guess it's a thing nowadays

"A List" movie stars making adult films, like "Scarlett Johansson and Emilia Clarke."

Well, at least now you know how Wonder Woman does it in the flesh! 

See, "'Wonder Woman' Gal Gadot Goes XXX." 

This is definitely NSFW. I'm warning you! 


Colin Dueck, Age of Iron

See, Colin Dueck, Age of Iron: On Conservative Nationalism.


Saturday, 28 May 2022

Uvalde Police Made ‘Wrong Decision’ in Waiting to Storm Shooter, Says Texas Official (VIDEO)

It's so heartbreaking. 

They stood in the hallway for more than an hour, in a situation where literally every second counts. It's no wonder there're calls for *less* gun control after this heinous attack, as folks are rightly saying you cannot rely on the police to save your life; you have to protect yourself, be armed. 

As CNN reports, "The Uvalde School District police chief is Pedro 'Pete' Arredondo."

And at the Los Angeles Times, "Police delays may have deprived Texas schoolchildren of lifesaving care, experts say":

UVALDE, Texas — As the nation struggles to comprehend the horrors that unfolded Tuesday inside Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, one of the biggest unanswered questions is whether anyone could have been saved.

Authorities have left the public with more questions than answers about the mass shooting that left 21 dead, and their timeline has shifted multiple times. At least 17 children were hospitalized with injuries, though it’s unclear how many of those survived.

The latest update provided Friday by the Texas Department of Public Safety found that more than an hour elapsed between the time the shooter entered the school at 11:33 a.m. and the time law enforcement officers breached a locked classroom and killed him at 12:50 p.m.

According to the timeline provided by authorities, a person called 911 from inside Room 112, one of the classrooms where the shooting occurred, at 12:16 p.m. and said there were “eight to nine students alive.”

Though it is not yet known whether those students were ultimately among the victims, the injured or the survivors, police and medical experts said that in most instances, the sooner a patient can get some form of medical attention, the better the chances at pulling through.

According to Dr. Demetrios Demetriades, a professor of surgery and director of trauma at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center, the mortality rate of a patient increases by about 10% for every 10 minutes of delayed bleeding control.

L.A. County-USC’s chief of trauma, Dr. Kenji Inaba, said similarly that “bleeding remains the No. 1 preventable cause of death after ballistic injury,” though he said he could not comment on the law enforcement tactics used in Uvalde or the medical care provided at the scene.

“After sustaining a ballistic injury, every second counts, and as soon as it is feasible to do so, victims should be triaged, have any obvious bleeding stopped, and then be transported to the nearest trauma center for definitive care,” he said.

Dr. Marc Eckstein, professor of emergency medicine and chief of the EMS Division at USC, said, “The longer it takes to evacuate patients from the hot zone, the worse their outcome is going to be.”

“When you have a place like [Uvalde] where your nearest Level 1 trauma center, San Antonio, is 80 miles away, the responsibility of law enforcement is to simultaneously try to neutralize the shooter and evacuate the workers and the kids and teachers as quickly as possible,” Eckstein said. “That was a lesson learned in Columbine, and a lesson that wasn’t learned in the Pulse nightclub shooting [in Orlando, Fla.], where patients who were potentially viable bled to death.”

Still, Eckstein said, he didn’t want to give grieving families the sense that their loved ones might have survived had authorities responded differently, particularly since so much depends on the location and type of injury.

The AR-15-type of rifle used in the shooting causes “devastating injuries to the body,” Eckstein said, not because of the size of the rounds but because their high velocity generates immense kinetic energy.

“And then on top of that, you have children,” he said. “The fatality rate of a child getting hit by a round like this is going to be much higher than an adult, and it’s going to be higher than a typical round from a handgun.”

The mother of 8-year-old survivor Adam Pennington said Friday she was troubled by the new timeline released by law enforcement.

“When you’re on scene, you should listen to your gut,” said Laura Pennington, 33. “I think everybody was very afraid and confused, and that causes problems. But there should be a set protocol for all of these situations.”

Pennington, who is also a substitute teacher in the district, said her brother-in-law was among those who rushed to the school to help but were kept outside by law enforcement even as officers refused to enter...

Ryan Busse, Gunfight

See Ryan Busse, Gunfight: My Battle Against the Industry that Radicalized America.


Monday, 23 May 2022

Phil Klay, Uncertain Ground

The author's a U.S. Marine Corps veteran who served thirteen months in Anbar Provice, Iraq, from January 2007 to February 2008, during the George W. Bush administration's "surge" in counterinsurgency warfare --- which ultimately brought the country back under control before the Obama administration threw it all away. 

He's the author of the award-winning novel, Redeployment

Now he's out with a new book, Phil Klay, Uncertain Ground: Citizenship in an Age of Endless, Invisible War.


Sunday, 15 May 2022

Renaud Camus, You Will Not Replace Us!

Here's the report on the New York white supremacist massacre: "Payton Gendron, 18-Year-Old White Supremacist, Massacres 10 in Buffalo Supermarket Racist Attack (VIDEO)."

Word has it that this book's been an inspiration for the recent wave of racially-motivated mass casualty incidents. Here, Renaud Camus, "You Will Not Replace Us!"