Tragedy and Farce

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The tragedy of the Obamacare ads.

 

Any politician who does not take a hard look at this is not preparing himself or herself for the electorate.

 

Hillary Clinton  and others in the Sixties — they had a great deal of ability.  they worked hard.  they had a norm.

Vile Things

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How I Got the Way I am

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I was a VISTA in Atlanta way back in the early 1990s.  And, as I’ve related in the past, when I discovered that the nonprofit to which I had been assigned by VISTA was basically pocketing more than $100,000 in public “AIDS outreach” funding while not even performing the inanely simple task for which they had been wildly overpaid in the first place, I got my first taste (but not my last) of the shocking corruption and race profiteering that drives the entire “social justice” “nonprofit” world.

Why race profiteering?  When I went to the regional director of VISTA to report this fraud, the director told me that I could not go to Health and Human Services to complain because I was a white female and my boss was a black man — and that simply wasn’t done in Atlanta.  His words, not mine.  I was offered a bribe instead: accept a transfer to another VISTA work site in exchange for keeping my mouth shut.

The bigger lesson, and the one that took years to sink in, was that this wasn’t corruption committed in defiance of the goals and intentions of the social service industry.  The corruption was the system working the way it was intended.

Incidentally, I took the transfer but still reported the fraud.  Nobody ever got back to me about my complaint.  One hand washes the other, and then they dump the dirty water all over the taxpayers’ heads.

Back in 1992, the Department of Health and Human Services didn’t care what my VISTA boss did with the $100K they gave to him for “AIDS outreach” because the act of giving it to him was all that really mattered to them.  It wasn’t their money, after all.  It wouldn’t be coming out of their paychecks if they did not bother to invest it sanely or supervise it properly (though that’s a fun idea).  They were the government, which meant that all that mattered to them was that some PR hack could get up in front of a bank of microphones and intone that Health and Human Services was “achieving justice” by “doing something” through “diverse” and “culturally sensitive” “education” and “community outreach.”

Twenty-odd years later, the same stale jargon is being intoned by the same hacks speaking into the same microphones in the same room, only they’ve added the word “sustainability” to every other sentence, like a nervous tic.  And the latest and biggest

But that’s not the worst thing to come out of the last twenty years of social justice-flavored governing.  The worst thing isn’t that some half-addled, grey, government bureaucrat is still ladling out wads of tax dollars to crooked two-bit 501-c3s for ridiculous “outreach” programs involving condoms and bananas and classrooms full of befuddled ESL students.

How to Research School Systems

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This is the most extraordinary website, put together by Vance Joachim. It is a template for deep understanding of school expenditures

Fear and Loathing at the Georgia House of Representatives Education Committee Meeting

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It was 1:52 when Brooks Coleman (R-Duluth) swaggered to the chairman’s seat at the center of the top row. He grasped the microphone and peered out into the meeting room — his room — at the education lobbyists quietly swarming in from the hallway. Education lobbyists are complacent creatures, so long as you don’t touch their health insurance bennies, and Brooks had good news for them: the Governor was going to hand over more money to the schools, which meant that every lobbyist sitting in the room pulling a taxpayer-subsidized paycheck to lobby for more taxpayer dollars for education was going to receive even more taxpayer dollars for even more lobbying for more taxpayer dollars. It was a beautiful circle, tax dollars begetting lobbyists begetting tax dollars. Brooks knew how to deal. The governor was the sugar daddy, but in his committee room, Brooks was the Governor’s bag man.

He looked around nervously. No sign of the giant insects that had followed him all summer, squawking their gibberish about federal encroachment on state education, and data mining, and agendas infiltrating the curriculum, and unelected private foundations taking over the schools. Geez, when you listened to the insects talk about the evils of mega-curriculum-textbook-testing conglomerates, they sort of sounded like leftists, but they were definitely right-wing reactionaries.

The insects didn’t want Brooks to take free money from Bill Gates. Who wouldn’t want a billionaire’s free money? Especially when it was for the children.

Sister Helen Prejean is Lying Again, This Time About Boston Bomber Dzhokar Tsarnaev

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Sister Helen Prejean has a thing for killers.  Of what, precisely, does that make her an expert?

Sister Helen Prejean, of Dead Man Walking and other media confections, is in the news again, this time testifying on behalf of convicted Boston Marathon killer Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

Prejean’s schtick consists of seeking out notorious killers to “spiritually counsel” — always with the cameras rolling, that is.  The only thing Prejean loves more than private time with sadistic murderers and rapists is television reporters covering her doing it.

So what, precisely, makes her an expert witness about anything other than her own sick hobby?  Why does the reflexively anti-religious media suddenly find religion when this spiritual fraud comes calling to report on how she peered into another killer’s soul?

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Helen Prejean, the Way She Likes It.  Outside the Boston Trial.

Helen Prejean’s credibility doesn’t get questioned enough in polite company because most decent people would rather quietly look away when someone like Prejean inserts herself into other people’s suffering.  Others naively — or enthusiastically, depending on their politics — buy into Prejean’s self-serving claims of being a spiritual leader.

But, considering her friends in Hollywood, her track record of denying the suffering of victims of horrific crimes, and her ugly habit of attacking victims who do not submit to her agenda, it is important that somebody do the job the media refuses to do: reveal the deceptions behind Prejean’s soul-seeing racket.

A distinctive pattern rules every script Prejean offers to the press.  By the time she is done inventing a fake story out of a real crime, she is the story’s hero; the killer is the victim, and the real victims and their survivors are scapegoated as vengeful and hate-filled — unless they agree to endorse Prejean’s worldview vigorously, in which case they are granted special dispensation for the crime of existing while victimized.

In the case of unruly or otherwise inconvenient victims, Prejean simply writes their existence and/or their suffering out of the script all together, as she and her collaborators Tim Robbins and Susan Sarandon did with several of the victims and survivors in the “true” film Dead Man Walking.

This is known as “cleansing the historical record” or just “historical denial.”  But no matter what you call it, Prejean’s denigration of crime victims and attraction to vicious killers and rapists ought to exclude her from putting her hand on the Bible and “expert witnessing” about anyone’s soul, including her own.

Now Prejean is lying about Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s purported remorse, just as she fabricated the alleged remorse of the murderer depicted in Dead Man Walking, Robert Lee Willie.

The New York Times has helped Helen Prejean spread such lies for decades.  The Times coverage in Boston was no exception.  First they set the stage by presenting Prejean as a modest religious delivering a crucial message from Tsarnaev:

BOSTON — Wearing street clothes, a silver cross dangling from her neck, Sister Helen Prejean, a Roman Catholic nun and prominent opponent of the death penalty, testified on Monday that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the convicted Boston Marathon bomber, had expressed sympathy for his victims.

“He said emphatically, ‘No one deserves to suffer like they did,’ ” she testified.

Asked how his voice sounded as he spoke, Sister Prejean, 76, said: “It had pain in it, actually, when he said what he did about ‘nobody deserves that.’

Note that we only have Prejean’s word that this exchange even took place, let alone what Tsarnaev meant.

The remorse scene she’s best know for, presented as fact in the movie Dead Man Walking,  is an abject misrepresentation of what killer Robert Lee Willie actually did to his murdered victims, to the families of his murdered victims, and to the surviving victims of his crimes.  He sneered at them in the death chamber; he mocked the survivors he had slashed and beaten to a state of brain damage; in the courtroom, he reveled in the details of slitting a woman’s throat while raping her.

But in order to promote Helen Prejean as a celebrity expert witness on murderer’s souls, Prejean herself, Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins erased some of these victims and their families from the story and eliminated the facts about the way Robert Lee Willie actually behaved.

Yes, Dead Man Walking is just a movie — but that is not the way it was promoted, and a lot of people believe it is true, a belief bolstered by Prejean’s nonstop self-promotion, speeches and tours. The “jailhouse conversion” and other scenes in Dead Man Walking are based on Prejean’s allegedly non-fiction book of the same name: the story is her version of events, starring her; the lies are her lies — and creepily, very creepily, what comes out through her words and through the movie is that Prejean seems aroused by her proximity, not only to rapists and murderers, but the the most heinous rapists and murderers she can find.

Robert Lee Willie (depicted by Sean Penn in Dead Man Walking) and his criminal partner Joseph V. Vaccaro were extreme torture-killers: one of their victims, Faith Hathaway, begged for her life as they raped her and cut off her fingers.  Finally she begged to die, only to listen to her killers complain that “the bitch wouldn’t die.”

 

From Police Detective Varnado: A young girl by the name of Faith Hathaway had been kidnapped in Mandeville… Robert L. Willie and Joseph Vaccaro — kidnapped the girl outside of a local lounge there. And they brought her up here. They raped her …blindfolded her and they beat her up… raped her and beat her, kicked her some more…The girl was spread out, spread eagle, flat on her back, completely nude. Her legs were stretched as wide as they could go and her arms were held up above her head like this and her head was cocked back and her mouth was wide opened….The first thing that hit my mind is I said, ‘My god this woman was screaming when she died.’ … I went and interviewed the suspects and …they had jugged her is the word they used, cut her throat and jugged her, and kept jugging her and there was a massive wound … I believe it was her left hand where the fingers were cut off. When she grabbed the knife… they ripped it back out and it severed her fingers. … Her arms are way up over her head where it was so obvious from what had happened to her that somebody had held her hands down above her head. …and what had happened is one person was holding her arms up over her head and the other person was stabbing her while he was between her legs. … He told me that Joe’s last words to her were ‘This bitch won’t die, this whore won’t die’ as he kept jugging her. ….the lady at some point told them “please just let me go and die by myself. You all just leave and let me go and let me die by myself” ….she was trying to wiggle around while she was saying it so he said I held her hands and said come on now behave.
If the victims’ families had not spoken out exposing Prejean’s fantasies, she would probably still be insisting the movie was factual today.

And even after the victims’ families spoke out, Prejean went on to make an even more grotesque musical (yes, musical) version of Dead Man Walking that openly cast murderers as Christ-figures crucified by society and by vengeful crime victims — and redeemed (surprise!) only by a nun’s saintly love.

This is the caliber of witness the defense used in court.  Realistically, would Prejean have been trotted out in this high-profile trial were it not for her radical Hollywood pals and the utterly dishonest Dead Man Walking?  The shame lies with the court.  Letting this woman close the trial in Boston made the denouement of the OJ Simpson trial seem dignified.

Helen Prejean’s lies about Robert Lee Willie’s “jailhouse conversion” matters because those lies comprise her entire reputation; they are her sole claim to being an expert witness who matters; they are the very reason she was used by the defense in Tsarnaev’s case.

Her credibility on the subject of ethics in the aftermath of crime does not stand up to even mild scrutiny: it’s a good thing for her that there is no such scrutiny.

Prejean’s entire record of past testimony and personal conduct needs to be evaluated, but who would do it?  The ABA uses attorneys’ professional fees to promote people like Prejean and her radical causes.  The Daubert Test for expert witness credibility doesn’t, to me, seem to apply here, though I’d be happy to hear from those who know more about this.  The media is not interested in . . . reporting.

So what we get is this celebrity nun preening for the microphones, offering hearsay that makes the front page of the New York Times because she hobnobs with Susan Sarandon, who named her own child after Jack Abbot, a vicious killer Sarandon helped spring from prison — and continued supporting him after he killed again, which he told her he would do.

Given the role of murderer fetishists like Sarandon and Prejean in the post-conviction clemency movement (a fellow activist with ties to both is terrorist cop-killer Bernardine Dohrn, who was involved with another nun in trying to spring rapist-murderer Humberto Leal), it’s too bad our justice system places any weight on “jailhouse conversions” in the first place, but in sentencing, they do.

Unfortunately, with the justice system (and mainstream media) we have, what the man who raped and killed your daughter says or does not say to the chattering nun visiting him in prison actually matters in courtrooms.  This is why the defense parachutes in Prejean to work her magic and coax out a few words of sorrow from some blood-drenched psychopath — or in the absence of success, just make the words up. Or feel them.  Or, something.

For, like Robert Lee Willie, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev does not appear to have actually expressed remorse for killing and maiming scores of victims.

You wouldn’t know this, though, from glancing at the headline in the Times, which reads: “Tsarnaev Expressed Sympathy for Boston Bombing Victims, Sister Helen Prejean Says.”  Nice touch there at the end: it cuts slack for Times editors who might otherwise have to take responsibility for what they publish.

Instead, Prejean and her Times accommodators wrestle journalistic ambiguity to slot the nun’s words into the place of Tsarnaev’s nonexistent remorse.  You have to read a bit carefully to see there’s no there there.

Predictable, Prejean starts with her favorite subject, herself:

Describing five meetings that she has had with the defendant since March at the defense team’s request, Sister Prejean portrayed Mr. Tsarnaev as respectful and receptive to her, even though he had probably never met a Catholic nun before.

Well isn’t that nice?  Tea and cookies and the front page of the Times.  Always the front page with this one.  Slip in a cultural diversity cheer for Tsarnaev — look, he respects nuns even though he’s probably never met a nun before, according to Prejean, even though he’s lived in Boston for decades, and went to something called Latin School, and UMass Dartmouth, and doesn’t even have an accent, according to his friends.

Yet according to the Times/slash/Prejean, we’re supposed to think at this point that he is some poor befuddled immigrant who doesn’t know up from down, or nuts from berries, or nuns from Shinola.  Prejean sang the very same tune with Humberto Leal, who had lived in the United States continually from the age of 2 but was suddenly a Mexican National the minute he got convicted in Texas for torturing a gang rape victim to death with a stick.

Besides, Helen, it not really about how he treats you, right?

No word on whether Prejean was attracted to him, as she has crudely hinted of other vicious killers — rapists in particular.  People do get better at spinning their own garbage the longer they’re in the media’s eye.

Prejean claims in the Times to have sensed “pain” in Tsarnaev’s voice: “I had every reason to think he was taking it in and he was genuinely sorry for what he did,” she said.  In other words, he didn’t really say that he felt pain,

Crime victims, in Helen Prejean’s moral universe, may as well have a scarlet “V” tattooed on their foreheads: “V” for vengeance, not victim.  Victims are “vengeful” if they are not forgiving in just the right way, and only people like Prejean can judge whether crime victims or their survivors have appropriately prostrated themselves before the criminals who have tortured them or murdered their loves ones.

The “V” word — mostly imagined or projected — is the sole sin in the church of Prejean.  One can only hope that the jurors in Boston took her testimony with all the seriousness it merited — which is to say none at all.

In Helen Prejean’s moral universe, which is shared by many others, victims are “vengeful” if they are not forgiving in just the right way, and only people like Prejean can judge whether crime victims or their survivors have appropriately prostrated themselves before the criminals who have tortured them or murdered their loves ones. The “V” word — vengeance, mostly imagined or projected — is the sole sin in the church of Prejean. One can only hope that the jurors in Boston took her testimony with all the seriousness it merited — which is to say none at all.

Wasn’t Cop-Killer Ismaaiyl Brinsley Supposed to be in Prison in Georgia for a 2011 Gun Crime?

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The New York Times wasted little time producing a typical front-page screed of grotesque excuses for cop-killer Ismaaiyl Brinsley.  They probably thought they were exercising discretion by holding off until today, after the funerals of Officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu to publish this toxic clown-tear rendering of the killer’s life.  But, that’s the Times.  They have so little decency that last week, their editorial page of December 30 carried two editorials side-by-side (at least on-line), one viciously condemning police for turning their backs in silent protest on Bill DeBlasio, the other celebrating killers and other serious felons participating in a “prison creative arts project.”

Of course, the latter op-ed, written by Anna Clark, a felon-fetishist poet from the University of Michigan, cast nasty aspersions on the corrections officers who are forced to keep this idiot safe as she engages in “cartwheels,” “improv,” “games of freeze,” and other acting out with serious violent offenders (the men pretend they’re prom queens, she notes).  So in the pages of the Times, two inches away from where the editorial staff ritually slashed away at mourning NYPD officers, poet Anna Clark mocked other police — the corrections officers in Michigan who keep her safe.  She also mocked the rest of us for locking such felonious magical creatures away.  She snarkily claimed she was “less afraid of incarcerated men than [she] was of improv itself,” though the one case she mentions in passing involves “multiple life sentences for armed robbery and assault with intent to murder.”

To place this sort of pro-criminal garbage next to

Preliminary news reports from actual news sources show that Brinsley was arrested at least 19 times in Georgia and Ohio, including for serious crimes involving guns.

In other words, Brinsley was the benefactor of a massive breakdown of crime control that resulted in serial leniency by the courts

should have been in prison in Cobb County, Georgia for a 2011 shooting offense, and possibly for other crimes in this state too.

I’m also sure, as more facts come out (I am looking now), that we’ll learn that his (at least) 15 Georgia arrests weren’t even considered in sentencing by various judges in the area, just as the illegal gun crime minimum mandatories are entirely defanged, in practice.

And it won’t necessarily be because a particular judge or DA actually screwed up or, worse, showed intentional leniency (not a particularly big difference given outcomes, but some cases are worse than others). It’s because there are so many Ismaaiyl Brinsleys walking the streets, and so many types of resistance to enforcing the law (including among the “Right on Crime” crowd) that the courts are overwhelmed and reduced to the sort of triage that gets cops killed.

We don’t have a police state: we have an anti-policing state where the real anti-police activism is the fact that police alone are left to deal with the violent outbursts of people like Brinkley, while the lawyers and judges and activists and Nicholas Kristoffs play Atticus Finch in the courts, the universities, the law firms, the editorial boards, the movie industry, and especially in their own narcissistic fantasy worlds.

And that self-indulgence is what gets cops shot dead in the streets — not to mention thousands of Brinsleys dead too. It is also why it is so dangerous when conservatives, the last vocal supporters of rule of law, abandon police to indulge in “Right on Crime” fantasies of their own, instead of seeking the facts about the way the justice system really works.

Chiefs of Police Agree: After Ferguson, Throw Cops Under the Bus

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The shooting of a black youth in Ferguson, Missouri by a police officer brought out the usual racial agitators, like Al Sharpton, who are keen to capitalize on other people’s tragedies.  For Sharpton, the destruction of businesses and neighborhoods by looters is merely a good week.  But for other, less visible

Absent from the vast, mostly fictional literature being produced online about the Ferguson case is any understanding of the various political pressures rained down on cops by their superiors in City Hall, especially by chiefs of police.

Chiefs of police are often purely political animals, especially in big cities where they are appointed by the sorts of people who become big-city mayors and city councilmen, ie. people who ideologically side with anti-law enforcement activists, not with law-abiding citizens, and certainly not with the police who work under them.

Many of these Chiefs of Police belong to PERF, the Police Executive Research Forum, where academics work hand-in-hand with Police Chiefs (“Police Executive” means Chief or other high administrators).  PERF takes a lot of money from the Department of Justice, and so it reflects the priorities of the DOJ (other taxpayer funding comes to PERF indirectly, through dues paid by member officers).

And while it is not completely fair to characterize PERF as the sort of police research organization that Eric Holder would create if it didn’t exist already, this characterization isn’t entirely unfair, either.  PERF spends a lot of time addressing allegations of race discrimination by police officers while simultaneously covering up politically incorrect facts about race and crime.

For example, a recent PERF report discussed the flash mob phenomenon at great length without once mentioning race as an element in any such mob violence.  Yet when activists declare some action by the police to be racist, PERF often parachutes in to reinforce the official line coming from the DOJ, which is always to placate activists, regardless of short or long-term costs to crime-ridden communities or to the police.

Doubtlessly, if flash mobs of white people were randomly attacking black pedestrians, PERF wouldn’t busy itself papering over the race of the offenders and the victims.

PERF is also one of many well-funded public-private mouthpieces promoting the status quo in the enforcement of hate crime laws.  They’ve played this role since Eric Holder and Bill Clinton partnered with PERF on hate crime law enforcement in the 1990’s.   So if you think hate crime laws are not being enforced equally, you can thank PERF for helping create that selective enforcement.

This week, PERF had a meeting in Chicago (where else?), apparently to think up ways to systematically give in to the rioters and malcontents in Ferguson demanding police officers’ blood.  According to the Reuters report of the meeting, which may or may not be accurate (if it isn’t, one would expect a correction from PERF, though I doubt one is forthcoming), the chiefs who met in Chicago are in perfect agreement with the rioters, never mind that the case has not yet gone to the courts:

The chiefs said that they had to lead a cultural shift in policing – emphasizing the importance of de-escalating potentially violent situations – that is often resisted by the rank and file who fear appearing soft on crime.

This statement alone is a top-down and very cynical betrayal of the men and women serving under these police chiefs.  Is “appearing soft on crime” really what the “rank and file” fear when they step out of their patrol cars in dangerous situations?  Is fear of bad statistics really what stands in the way of beat cops understanding the “importance of de-escalating potentially violent situations”?

No, this is claptrap being invented by officials who have decided to ride a cultural anti-cop wave by throwing their own employees to the wolves.  Fears about “appearing soft on crime” afflict the number-crunchers in city hall and the political appointees with lots of gold braid on their uniforms, not the cops who go out to patrol the streets.  Patrol officers have more practical and immediate reasons for wishing to “de-escalate potentially violent situations.”  For example, they want to go home after their shifts; they want to have a job tomorrow, and they will have to come back to the same street corner some time soon, so they have a vested interest in keeping it as violence-free as possible.

The Reuters report on PERF continues in the cop-bashing vein:

The chiefs said that even though a police shooting might be ruled justifiable under law, they had to hold officers to higher moral and ethical standards to satisfy the community.

“All it takes is one that doesn’t do the right thing, and we need to step up and separate that officer from employment and pursue criminal charges. We had a frank discussion about the leadership it takes to do that,” said [Dallas Police Chief David] Brown.

So in order to “satisfy the community,” Chief Brown would subject the cops under him to the “moral and ethical standards” of the protestors marching in the streets — in other words, to the moral and ethical standards of Al Sharpton.  Police in Dallas who serve under Chief Brown should take note: no longer will you be judged based on the law itself: you will be judged based on what “the community” demands, or more precisely what Al Sharpton demands.

Note that the chiefs of PERF did not decide that they themselves needed to do anything differently.  Instead, they sloughed off all responsibility for crises like the one in Ferguson on men and women low in the ranks.  This sort of behavior from putative leaders is a disgrace and a complete inversion of what leadership is supposed to entail, but it also should not be a surprise.  In cities like Chicago, where PERF was meeting, the Chief of Police is a corrupt ally of Mayor Rahm Emmanuel; in Dallas, Chief Brown has a similarly problematic reputation.

 

 

Roadmap to Lie City: The New York Times Pushes a Fable About Crime and Immigration

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Dependably, Frances Robles of the New York Times is providing the journalistic justification for the President’s current lies about the border crisis.  Gangs attacking children, the Times claims, is the notable factor suddenly driving waves of illegal immigration over the southern border.

The Times does not care much for crime victims on this side of the fence, unless a very specific formula may be met: the victim must be a minority — sexual, racial, or otherwise — and the offender must be a white person, dating preference heterosexual.  If that stage can’t be fully set, a “white Hispanic” or sexually ambiguous, meth-addicted redneck will do in a pinch.

Most importantly, minority-on-minority crime, like the current bloodbath in Chicago, must be denied.

But crime in foreign vistas lack the American handicapping.  And so the Times happily volunteered to paper over the chasm between the President’s claims about gang-driven migration and the facts on the ground.  “Fleeing Gangs, Children Head to U.S. Border” ran the headline of Robles’ piece.  In it, he offered mealy-mouthed acknowledgements of other “causes” of  the current youth migration, but only to clear the stage to discuss crime:

Many children and parents say the rush of new migrants stems from a belief that United States immigration policy offers preferential treatment to minors, but in addition, studies of Border Patrol statistics show a strong correlation between cities like San Pedro Sula with high homicide rates and swarms of youngsters taking off for the United States.

It couldn’t be that “swarms of youngsters” take off from certain cities because word spreads locally of immigrants successfully clearing the unprotected American border, could it?

There is no denying that Honduras is currently the “murder capitol” of the world, and San Pedro Sula in the murder capitol of Honduras.  But it has held this ignominious title for several years.  Nor do migration rates rise and fall with rates of violence in the city.  According to the Times, “homicides dropped sharply in 2012 after a gang truce in neighboring El Salvador,” but rates of unaccompanied minors traveling from San Pedro Sula to the U.S. has

 

 

 

Power and the Naturalization of Political Speech

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I just finished up a response to the IRS regarding a nonprofit that has been in limbo for more than a year because the IRS is saying that they are not behaving like a nonprofit in the ways that they oppose Common Core.

The situation is too complex to go into here, and we will be discussing it more in the near future.  But going through the process of justifying

 

Lying About Innocence: The Central Park Five Were Guilty

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This is not a story about the Central Park Jogger.  She was one of the victims of the five men being feted by Bill DeBlasio and handed $40 million dollars

 

Nicole Simpson and the Central Park Jogger were victims of vicious racist lynchings — the Central Park Jogger did not ask for fame and Nicole Simpson did not ask to have her throat cut.  At the mayor’s mansion in New York, thugs and rapists are greeted as heroes but the Central Park Jogger would not be welcome.

But the racism does not end with the $40 million.  Generations of schoolchildren are being taught to hate the Central Park Jogger.  NPR is using our tax dollars to spread hate about her.

 

 

 

The New York Times’ 50-Year Lie About The Murder of Kitty Genovese

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The New York Times is the paper of record when it comes to telling lies.  The Times’ denial of Stalin’s crimes in the service of propping up Stalin is arguably the bloodiest international lie of the twentieth century.  In domestic news, this honor belongs to a single crime story: the Times’ coverage of the murder of 28-year old Kitty Genovese in 1964.

How could newspaper reporting on one crime — even horrific as it was — be so important?

The answer may be found in the story the Times made up about Genovese’s murder.  Their tale of 38 witnesses who purportedly did nothing as they watched from windows as a young woman fought off her attacker for thirty minutes before dying shifted responsibility for the crime off Genovese’s black killer and onto her white, middle-class neighbors.  In 1964, in the wake of the JFK assassination, with black neighborhoods threatening to explode with race riots, and crime rates rising throughout the city, the public apathy story was precisely the type of crime story the New York Times wanted to tell.

Whereas the real story, the story of a black predator out seeking another woman to torture and kill, and not only a woman but a white woman, and not only to kill her but to kill her and then rape her dead body, was a story the Times would bury for fifty years.

A.M. Rosenthal made his career with the story he made up about who was “really responsible” for Kitty Genovese’s murder.  He  was so proud of the work he did that he instantaneously enshrined

Times editor A.M. Rosenthal was commiserating with Police Commissioner Michael Joseph Murphy when Murphy suggested that the Genovese crime would fit a story both men wanted to tell about “public apathy towards law enforcement.”

was picked up by other news organizations and quickly spread around the globe.  Genovese’s neighbors in Kew Gardens, Queens, were condemned by politicians and on editorial pages “as far away as Istanbul and Moscow,” according to one Times retrospective.  At home, the tale of the guilty 38 set off mass public soul-searching.  Clergymen denounced Genovese’s neighbors from the pulpit. Sociologists invented theories about “bystander apathy” and set to constructing psychological experiments to test ordinary citizens for “Genovese syndrome.”

The story of 38 neighbors watching and ignoring the cries of a dying woman was entirely untrue, but it served the purposes of Times metropolitan editor (later news editor) A.M. Rosenthal so well that Rosenthal continued to defend it despite revelations debunking his version several times: in the Daily News in 1984, by district attorneys involved in the prosecution, and even in the Times itself in 2004.  

No part of Rosenthal’s story was true: there had never been 38 witnesses.  Only a few people witnessed the first brief attack, among them Robert Mozer, who did not stand silently but opened a window and shouted at Winston Moseley, who then ran away.  Two people did call the police.  Genovese stumbled to the back of her apartment building and entered the foyer, where the second attack occurred in sight of only one witness, a friend of hers who panicked and sought help before calling the police.      

 

In 1964, Rosenthal was looking for shifting responsibility for the crime away from Genovese’s killer and onto her neighbors   Mostly it was  a boon for journalists and other thinkers, who made it into a personal drama.  And it made Rosenthal’s career. within a few months published book, highlighting his personal

academicians rushed in with studies, clergymen denounced.  the 38 — and by extension their class and race — were denounced.  spawned and industry of studies.

bystander guilt was extremely useful in 1964.at the time, crime exploding, racial violence especially

and this is where the Times really shone.  less noticed but equally as important roots theory.  fifty years.  most bloody years.

keeping up the original lie was hardly necessary once the movement took off, but the Times being the Times, they clung to it stubbornly, even as it was disproven.  These people disproved it.

The neighbors, who became internationally notorious, were accused of being worse than

this story is not true.  but it doesn’t matter it wasn’t true, because the Times wanted it to be that way.  This is what the editor of the Times said in his book.

In 1964, crime rising.  Nobody knew how much it would.  By 1968, it was a crisis.  Murder shot up 78%, rape, etc.

Times lies still percolate — still people out there wanting to make symbols of the worst horror out of the neighbors — the mirror.  Seeing in the mirror.

But of course these people don’t mean their mirror.  they mean people who live in modest houses looking in their mirrors, while the Times holds up the mirror for them to see.

 

Rosenthal said this in his book, too.  he said the people in Kew Gardens came to represent asll that was horrible in human rights, and the Times represented the fight for human rights, so he was right and did not have to change anything he wrote.

He rewrote and rewrote that book and kept on lying and excusing himself and blaming the neighbors, even as evidenced olled in that he was wrong.  Finally the Times had to admit that the book wasn’t true, but in try Times spirit they didn’t put it that way — they suggested that there were alternate realities, gently, they let him drift on lying.  The expendable people were the neighbors, and Kitty — the killer and the reporters were too good for this world of facts.

The Times was not interested in crime, they wee interested in social justice.  Social justice for them meant promoting root causes theory.  The Gebovese case gave editor the perfect opportunity to promote it.  It was as if tyne story was delivered to him to promote a theory, and it probably was.

This is how he remembers int in his memoir.  He says they didn’t care.  And they didn’t publish stories about rape, and they didn’t talk about race, though they would have if the crime had fit.

The Times said a lot of disturbing things about crime, but they felt they were fighting a justice cause.  there was no doubt, not in 1964, not decades later, not as people were cut down.

The neighbors were the problem.  First they didn’t care, then they cared too much,.  First they stayed, then they left.

The criminals were never a problem though, and the Times conformed to this for decades.  Made a hero out of her killer, abetted by what they left out of the reporting. — the rape, the sex crimes.  The race hatred.  In 1977 they said , in 1978 they let him say she was racist.  he was hero, misunderstood, she was a racist, she became one of the neighbors, responsible for her own death, like her neighbors.

The killer was a  hero but the neighbors were human rights offenders.  The killer was a victim of human rights offenses, but they were still guilty in 1970.  By then the paper was running ediotirai8als by the kilelr and sociologists were teaching generations of students they they were the real killers, the real human rights violators, while he was misunderstood.

In the universities and newsrooms, the twin theories played out from the crime — roots causes, and bystander theory.

This story designed to shift blame from criminals and onto society.  Sociologists took it up eagerly.  Bystander guilt designed to create guilt among bystanders.

Other side of the coin was root causes theory — which begets critical race theory.

Times story was not even true.    They were looking for such a story.clung to a story that shifts responsibility for the crime away from Genovese’s killer and onto her neighbors,

This account is not true.  The Daily News debunked the Times “bystander” story thirty years ago, and in 2004, even the Times grudgingly reported that it was untrue.  But the theory was true, and the hero was the reporter, and facts would not change this. It’s too important Rosenthal would say until his death.  What he was really saying was that he was too important, that the reporter and the killer were too important.

The lies the Times published in 1964 about Genovese’s murder ushered in the era of blaming society, and simultaneously not blaming criminals, for the existence of crime.  It is impossible to quantify the damage done by projecting blame away from offenders and onto the public, but in the decades that followed, millions of innocent people experienced life-altering and life-ending acts of violence thanks to this fable newsmen spun.

 

After Times made the lie, academicians eager to repeat it.  But the root causes theory preceded Genoovesae.  Rosenthal waiting for an opportunity to exploit it.

You can see this in his book.  Before Genovese was killed, the Times was already engaging in social engineering regarding crime, focused on race.

Fantasy already shilled by Hollywood — 12 angry men, etc.

It was focused on race, but the next quarter century would take its toll in the black community.

In 1977. the Times went even further.  they published an editorial by the killer.  This didnt happen in a vacuum. In 1977 there were X murders in NYC.  By 1988, there were Y.  The bloody toll of those years can be attributed to a judiciary that acted in philosophical agreement with the Times.  Thousands died, hundreds of thousands crippled, maimed, Millions lived lives defined by fear.  Values of neighborhoods crumbled, not because of white flight, but because of what made whites — and everyone else who could afford to get out, flee.

Still the Times did not waver.

When the story went viral, so did the philosophy.

Times’ coverage of Kitty Genovese’s murder may be its .  Genovese was murdered by a serial rapist-murderer of women, Winston Moseley, in 1964.  The way the Times told the story, however, it was not Moseley but Genovese’s neighbors who were to blame for her death.  The neighbors were to blame, the Times claimed, because they failed to alert police as they listened to Genovese scream and plead for her life.

The story of blaming KG neighbors for her murder represents a moment not just in journalism but in criminal justice, where blaming criminals was subsumed by blaming society.  Offenders and rioters were turned into victims, and real victims — raped women, shopkeepers, innocent bystanders, people trying to flee chaos, were identified by the intrepid reporters as the really guilty ones.

It is difficult to quantify the harm that has been done under this banner.  This theme has spread from journalism to academia, where is flies under the banner of sociology.  Root Causes birthed racial politics which led to radicalized law enforcement, hate crimes laws, but mostly abandonment of people to criminals.

Times’ ur text is book written and rewritten for decades now, with the latest new introduction admitted in a Times review to still fail to get to the point. As it is written, it is as good an example as any of the fetishistic imprint of the mindset.  Not one but four different rewrites and still obsessing over their feelings of being saviors.

If criminals are one subset misrepresented by the Times ur-lie, then journalists are the other: they misapprehend themselves as upholders of justice.  They have not become more accurate thanks to that misrepresentation.  In order to maintain this apprehension, they have needed villains they could win against.  The residents of Kew Gardens have been in their sights for fifty years.

Kew Gardens residents vilified in sociology handbooks.  Worldwide symbols of evil (note example).  Of course movies made about them.  Broadway plays.  Entire arsenal of hatred.  Their guilt has been expanded to an entire class of people — those who fled chaos of city.  First they were blamed for not responding, and since they they have been battered with accusations for responding to crime.

In contrast, Moseley stands for criminals granted special status, from NPR stories to freedom.

And so we’ve had fifty years of unacceptable crime rates denied, blamed on society.  And release of one after another criminal celebrated by the Times.  The special destruction wrought by this story, told to elevate journalists and criminologists above ordinary people and morals that involve punishing criminals, is the real victim.

 

Blame everyone and don’t blame the offender — a theme that lives on in contemporary movements against bullying.

Ultimately, the Times elevated Winston Moseley and AM Rosenthal above truth and the victim.  In order to do such an audacious thing, such and unlikely morality tale, they needed an excellent and outsized villain.  They found one where they are usually found — in the innocent bystanders who wanted nothing more than to live in safety and peace.

 

being a reporter does not mean never having to say you’re sorry.  doubly so for editors.

 

 

It Takes a Village to Kill A Cop — R.I.P. Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos

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These are officers Officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos:

scenecops

They were assassinated in cold blood by an anti-cop protester in Bedford-Stuyvesant today.

Earlier in the week, protesters including Eric Linsker, a CUNY poetry professor, attacked police by trying to throw a garbage pail down on them, then kicked and stomped two police officers.  Linsker ought to be tried for attempted murder.  His poetry sucks too, but you don’t need to be competent to succeed in the academic humanities today: what you need to do is demonstrate the appropriate level of hatred against the appropriate scapegoats.  Bad poet Linsker got a job teaching poetry at the taxpayers’ expense because his bad poetry is about killing cops.  It takes a village to kill a cop, and academicians like Linsker are the idiot troubadours of that village.

Meanwhile, Barack Obama and Eric Holder, along with professors associated with Harvard School of Law, may be preparing to help pardon another cop-killer, Assata Shakur (JoAnne Chesimard).

Shakur is responsible for the murders of several cops.  In 1971, she ordered the murder of a random white cop in Atlanta, and her followers went out and killed the first white cop they found: James Richard Greene.  The 26-year old Atlanta cop was gunned down at random for no reason other than being white and a cop.  He was eating breakfast at the intersection of Boulevard and Memorial Drive in Atlanta when he was murdered.

I lived within blocks of that intersection for 20 years.  The intersection lies in civil rights icon John Lewis’ district.  But Lewis is not really a civil rights leader anymore because he does not support civil rights or human rights for everyone.  If he did, he would treat the racist political murders of police in New York City — and in his district — as civil rights violations more severe and noteworthy than what happened to him.  He was beaten, once, but he survived.

If John Lewis really opposed race murder, he would memorialize the sacrifice of James Richard Greene.  He would advocate for the murdered cop to be honored with an historical marker, at least.  But instead, Lewis sides with the virulent anti-cop lynch mob.  It takes a village to kill a cop, and John Lewis is a politician in that village.

If you went and spoke to the well-off hipsters who live in the area of Greene’s murder today, I believe nine out of ten of them would express solidarity with the cop-killers and at best vague discomfort or (more likely) jubilation at the mention of murdering a cop.  The Occupy movement demonstrated their jubilation at killing cops repeatedly.  It takes lots of idiots to populate the village of killing cops.

Shakur’s attorney, Soffiyah Elijah, was honored with a high post at Harvard Law — not because she is accomplished in any other way but because she supports the murder of cops.  She is even an apologist for Castro’s prisons.  This sort of garbage is what passes for legal scholarship at our Ivy League schools — advocating cop killing is a stepping-stone to a successful career at Harvard Law.  It takes a village to kill a cop, and Harvard Law is the barrister of that village.

The Obamas are close to another Assata Shakur supporter — the rap artist Common.  Common is famous as a “politically relevant” artist because he sings songs celebrating Assata Shakur’s cop-killing, and the Obamas invited him to the White House to celebrate that music — not despite his pro-cop killer stance but because of it.  The Obamas are the aristocracy of the village that supports killing cops.

On the week Barack Obama and Eric Holder held the infamous “beer summit” to scapegoat a police officer for being white and doing his job, several cops were murdered.  Obama and Holder could have used the “beer summit” to honor or at least mention these murdered police, but they didn’t, of course.  Murdered police weren’t important to them on that day: what was important was the opportunity to ritually abuse a cop for the color of his skin.  Holder has also, of course, been instrumental in acquiring pardons for other cop-killers and terrorists.

Eric Holder is the law in the village that supports killing cops.

The executive branch of our government is filthy with people who support cop-killing.  It is time to call this bunch the name they deserve.  They are a lynch mob.  They are the first lynch mob to control the White House since Woodrow Wilson approvingly screened Birth of a Nation at the White House in 1915.  100 years later, all that’s changed is the target.

It is time for decent people to come together and hold a march on Washington showing solidarity for the humanity and human rights of cops.  We need a pro-cop, anti-lynching-of-cops movement.

Sad that any civilized nation would need such a thing.

 

 

Remembering Larry Grathwohl: The Media’s Four-Decade Lie About The Weather Underground

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All over the internet, people are remembering Larry Grathwohl, who infiltrated the Weather Underground for the FBI and prevented them from killing people, at the risk of his own life.  Larry passed away last July 18, and we all miss him.  We’re also disappointed by the lies Fox News’ Megyn Kelly allowed Bill Ayers to spout about Larry and other issues on her recent, highly-promoted “celebrity interview” with Ayers.

The sociopaths of the Weather Underground have been given four decades of free press to spread their lies.  You can see a partial list of four decades of fawning coverage of the Weathermen below.

Looking Back: Modern Journalists on the Weathermen

Since emerging from hiding, former members of the Weather Underground have found many allies eager to help them whitewash their pasts.  Other journalists are working to correct such propagandistic celebration of Weatherman.  The following stories are presented in chronological order.  Interestingly, some of the most critical stories are from traditionally liberal sources.

Interviews with Larry Grathwohl and other materials detailing the Weather Underground’s real record of violence can be found at America’s Survival, where Cliff Kincaid hosts Justice for Victims of the Weather Underground, a project dedicated to bringing the Weathermen to trial for their crimes.

We are grateful to everyone who are helping us correct the record about the real reign of bombings, murder, and attempted murder committed by Bill Ayers, Bernardine Dohrn, Jeff Jones, Judge Eleanor Raskin (neé Stein), Mark Rudd, and the other assorted criminals of the Weather Underground.  Go to the Bringing Down America website to find links to other people writing about Larry today.

Cliff Kincaid on Larry Grathwohl and Bill Ayers

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Larry Grathwohl, who died last July, risked his life to infiltrate the Weather Underground and stop their domestic terrorism campaign against police, soldiers, and ordinary Americans.

Disappointingly, Fox News recently featured Bill Ayers in an over-hyped interview with Megyn Kelly.  Instead of challenging Ayers’ many lies about Larry Grathwohl and other subjects, Kelly gave Ayers free publicity and a national platform.

Cliff Kincaid set the record straight:

Will Megyn Kelly Help Bring Ayers to Justice?

Cliff Kincaid  —   July 2, 2014
Bill Ayers shouldn’t be interviewed; he should be jailed. Megyn Kelly’s interview of Ayers, made reference to the role of Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn in the bombing-murder of San Francisco policeman Brian V. McDonnell. Unfortunately, Ayers lied his way through the interview, which aired over two nights on her nightly Fox News Channel show, “The Kelly File.”

But this is what happens when a professional liar like Ayers does a “shocking” TV interview. The exchange may achieve high ratings, but nothing good will come out of the interview unless Kelly now follows up with the “Justice for Victims of the Weather Underground” campaign we have been waging for five years for the “cold case” bombing murder of Sergeant McDonnell to be reopened and examined by a federal grand jury. . .

read the rest here

Friends of Larry Grathwohl are putting on a “Blog About Larry” day on July 18 — the first anniversary  of his untimely death.  You can read about it at the Bringing Down America website.  If you’re a cop or a soldier, please take the time to learn about Larry Grathwohl, a Vietnam Vet who stood up to cop-killing radicals at the risk of his life.  If you have a blog, or a podcast, please join us in remembering Larry on Friday, July 18.

Another Hate Crime That Was The Wrong Kind of Hate

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Among the many toxic effects of hate crime laws, the worst is that they destroy the ethic of equality before the law.  This ethic was the cornerstone of the civil rights movement and its most compelling argument, and for forty years — from 1955 to 1995 — appeals for equal treatment before the law for both victims and offenders swayed white Americans to understand minorities’ plight.

All of this changed when Eric Holder and Bill Clinton shoved through a highly politicized hate crimes regime in the late 1990’s.  From the beginning, this regime wasn’t about punishing hate wherever it happened; it was about weaponizing identity politics where they least belonged: in the courts.  It was about freezing America like a scared rabbit before the image of eternal imaginary Klansmen eternally burning down black churches and eternally lynching minorities.

The hate crimes movement also helped distract from the real “tidal wave” of crimes being committed by offenders who frequently happened to be minorities (as were most of their victims).  The “tidal wave of racially motivated church burnings” in the nineties which was ostensibly the motivator for creating the modern hate crimes regime actually didn’t happen, but that didn’t matter to Clinton or Holder either: they just lied about it.

Hate crime laws were really about re-racializing the justice system.

Holder and Clinton knew that these laws were never really intended to “combat hate” but to create a legal spoils system to reward political friends, punish political enemies and super-charge racial divisiveness.  The winners were the various race and ethnic hustlers and the losers were everyone else.

The hate crimes regime that exists today has succeeded beyond Clinton and Holder’s wildest dreams in sowing divisiveness and inequality before the law.  Sadly, nobody even expects these laws to be enforced equally anymore.  Yet nobody in the Republican Party in the states — most hate crime laws are state laws — has the backbone to try to repeal these laws anymore, though doing so would likely be a popular, politically attainable goal.  The racism card and various other prejudice cards, played endlessly, have successfully reduced Republican elected officials to a quivering silence.

Back in the 1990s, Holder and Clinton still bothered to assure the public that hate crime laws would be applied equally — except, they said with a wink and a nudge, where women are involved because there’s just too many female victims of random rapes, not to mention random sexual slurs and random subway assaults and anti-female graffiti and all those other serious and unserious crimes that result in federal investigations when the writing on the dorm room wall is directed at blacks, or Muslims, or (liberal) Jews, or gays, or lesbians, or transvestites, or Latinos, or homeless people, or any of the other groups selectively empowered to demand mobilization of the hate police.

The N.O.W. under Kim Gandy and several other (not all) feminist organizations cheerfully swallowed this double-standard because they:

(A) were known to cheerfully swallow absolutely anything Bill Clinton told them to swallow.

and

(B) were so dominated by the political lesbians and minorities in their ranks that they really did not care if heterosexual white women were subjected to anything from rape to harassment on a public street — heterosexual white women have long been no more than the feminist movement’s whipping boys.  [And yes, to the Judith Butlerites out there, I know on the one hand that I shouldn’t use the term “boys” to describe women, but you (or “u” or “it” or “shoe” or whatever you call yourselves now) must admit that I’m at least disrupting cissexual gender normativity by doing so.]

Back in the nineties, Clinton and Holder swore that white victims of racial violence and abuse would “be counted” alongside other victims (it’s all about the counting).  They swore that these laws wouldn’t diminish other victims of crime.  They promised a lot of things that never happened, but these things were never really intended to happen in the first place.  White people were never intended to be protected against anti-white hate.  Women were never intended to be “counted” as victims of hate.  “Gender bias” was always intended for only non-biologically-born females, not hatred against females, because there’s just too much of it.

As a consequence of these lies, we’re now at a place where randomly killing a heterosexual woman is not as important to our justice system as killing certain other types of people, and mugging a white man is not as important as using a slur word against a minority, and mugging a black man, if the mugger is also a black man, is not as important as a slur word uttered by a white.  Neither types of muggings is likely to be investigated much, if at all, while the right kind of slur word uttered by the right kind of person actually brings out federal troops to investigate and denounce the crime.

It is important to remember that all of this is by design.

The best example of the selective dehumanization of victims created by the hate crime regime was, for a long time, for me, the beating murder of a transgender prostitute in Cordele, Georgia in 1999.  Tracy Thompson managed to seek help before dying from terrible injuries.  Before she died, she said “her boyfriend” had committed the crime, but it was uncertain whether she meant a John or someone she knew.  It was thus also uncertain whether the killer knew that she was biologically a man dressed as a woman and if that knowledge factored at all into the crime.

And so, the real intentions of hate crime laws were horrifically laid out: if Thompson’s killer was angry at her for being transgender — if he had picked her up with the intent of buying sex and “discovered” male genitalia under her skirt then beat her to death because of it, that was a hate crime.  But if her killer just decided to kill a female prostitute, that wasn’t hate.  It wasn’t a crime that would bring federal intervention; it wasn’t as serious a state crime, sentencing-wise; the GBI (Georgia Bureau of Investigation) would not get involved; the activists would not march in the streets; the exploiter organizations, from the SPLC to the Atlanta-based Center for Democratic Renewal (the source of the church burning deceptions) to the ADL to the NAACP to the HRC to the NOW (special shame on their heads) would not given a damn; the crime wouldn’t be recounted in the pricey “teaching tolerance” manuals sold by the SPLC and shoved down childrens’ throats at school; it wouldn’t be solemnly memorialized at civil rights events by Eric Holder and Bill Clinton or by Eric Holder and Barack Obama some dozen years later.

If the male genitalia under the skirt didn’t matter to the killer, then it wasn’t an important injustice like killing Matthew Shepard: it was just your run-of-the-mill kidnapping and brutally beating to death of a woman in a lonely field.

At that moment, hate crime laws made “biologically-born” women officially less human than transgendered women and a whole slew of other specially designated people, and this inequality in the courts has only grown stronger since that time.

Nowadays, nobody even expects hate crime laws to be enforced with a facade of even-handedness.  Nobody expects equality before the law anymore, and that lack of expectation is horrifying in its normalcy.  We gave away a lot in 1999.

And so we come to just the latest ethical and practical mess the hate crimes industry has made of our entire justice system.  From the moment Shaima Alwadi was found murdered in her home in California, with a note denouncing the soon-to-be divorced housewife as a “terrorist” nearby, it was well understood that the note was likely a hoax.  But the hate crimes industry cannot let pass any opportunity to accuse Americans of being racist because that is their primary purpose, and so the candles in the cups appeared, and the vigils, and the marchers, and teach-ins on college campuses and elementary schools: the entire apparatus of the for-profit non-profit hate crimes industry struck up the band.  As the media reported: “The case reverberated across the nation because at first, it was thought to be a hate crime.”  So we have trained people to react and also to not react when the victim is just the usual: black-on-black, or black-on-white, or male-on-random female, or, frankly, male-on-male victim when it’s a sex crime.  The latter never gets counted as gender bias, because that’s not what gender bias laws are for.

From the beginning, there was ample evidence that Alwadi’s murder was some type of domestic violence, including her own recent warning to her sister that she would be killed by her husband.  But we have primed a generation of young people to believe above all else that an easily dismissible note with a racial slur is more important than a woman’s beaten and murdered body.  And so the mob assembled, and when the killer’s laughable ploy was revealed, the mob did not retreat: they simply claimed, as they always claim, that it was a “teachable moment” about white racism nonetheless.

The hate crime activists simultaneously demeaned the real victim and created a fake one.  Alwadi simply wasn’t politically useful if she had just been killed by her husband.

Shaima Alwadi’s husband was convicted for murdering his wife in San Diego this week.  Her killing was not prosecuted as a gender-bias hate crime because it was just an angry man killing a woman because she tried to leave him.  Of course, the question of whether his anger arose from his Muslim beliefs in women’s submissiveness would never be “counted” as potential grounds for hate crime charges — not only because feeling such things about women doesn’t officially count as hate, but also because Muslims are among the groups who are systematically designated only as victims of hate crimes,  not as perpetrators of them.

If we enforced hate crime laws in ways designed to actually fight hate, even this domestic murder might be investigated as a form of gender bias.  But if we enforced hate crime laws equally, the Muslim terrorists of 9/11 would count as the most prolific hate criminals in our country’s history (3,000 dead thanks to anti-American nationality hatred); Major Hasan would be one of the worst individual hate criminals in history (13 dead thanks to anti-infidel hatred), and female victims of serial, stranger rapists would be by far the largest category of hate crime victims (gender bias hate) and male victims of serial, stranger rapists who targeted men exclusively would be a significant cohort of gender bias hate crime victims as well.  If anti-white slurs and targeting of random whites were counted as hate, as it should be, minority males (and increasingly females) would rank the highest among hate crime offenders for crimes ranging from robbery to gang assault.

The vast majority of hate crime victims would be white, and the vast majority of hate crime offenders would be from several of the minority populations whose advocates control the deceptive enforcement machinery of these laws today.  These activists could not, of course, allow the truth to be told this way.  To maintain their hate-filled, false vision of America, they must make sure that these laws are never enforced equitably.  Until conservative elected officials find the backbone to address this terrible injustice, we should cease pretending that equality before the law is an ideal or practical matter in our courts.

Hillary Clinton and Thomas Alfred Taylor’s Underpants: It Takes a Village to Rape a Child

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Or maybe we should say: It Takes a Village to Get Away With Raping a Child.  

bill-and-hillary

This is Hillary Clinton in 1975.  She was on her way to becoming a “feminist icon,” so of course she stepped up to defend a 41-year old man who admitted to raping a child — a twelve-year old child.  There were two witnesses to the crime — another man and a teen boy who were in the car with the rape victim.  The offender plied the child with alcohol and then raped her.

As reported in The Washington Free Beacon in a well-researched article by Alana Goodman, Clinton, in 1975, by her own giggly admission, knowingly orchestrated a fraudulent test of the evidence from the crime in order to try to deceive the jury about her client’s guilt: she sent a part of the rapist’s underpants that had no fluids on it to a lab in New York and then threatened to use the negative lab result to disprove the prosecutor’s other evidence.  She also made false claims about the victim’s mental state, calling her an unstable liar.  Ultimately, despite powerful evidence condemning the rapist, the prosecution let Clinton’s client plead down to little more than time served.

There are lessons for everyone in this story.

Academic Feminists (a category that includes many feminist journalists) are now piling on anyone who deigns to criticize Clinton for using dirty tricks forty years ago to help a child rapist get off with a slap on the wrist.  This may sound odd, but Academic Feminists have never been interested in putting real rapists into real prisons.

In fact (a fact you won’t learn in women’s studies classes), from the very beginning of the modern feminist movement, Academic Feminists have been far more interested in playing identity politics than in punishing rape.  At the first meetings of the N.O.W., violence against women wasn’t even going to be included as a platform of the group, out of fear that condemning violence against women would result in some minority men getting convicted for the rapes they committed.

Couldn’t have that.

Better to throw all rape victims under a bus than hold black rapists responsible for their rapes  — of mostly black women and children.  From the beginning of modern feminism, racial and ethnic sensitivity — who committed a crime — was more important than the victim or the crime itself, let alone the ethic of justice for all.

[It should be noted that this attitude disgusted a critical mass of other feminist women who started working with police to protect women and children anyway — regardless of the color of their offender.  These service provider types generally like to stay away from politics, and they shouldn’t be confused with Academic Feminists and other political bottom feeders]

Fast-forward to today: the Academic Feminists have spent the last several years perfecting their March Towards Universal Guilt But No Prison Time Only Re-Education For All Men But Especially White Fraternity Brothers.

Academic Feminists have always just been leftists who care more about emptying the prisons than about real victims of crime.  They would rather exploit rape cases for political ends than imprison rapists.

For example, Amanda Marcotte at Slate is wagging around her frayed invisible Code of Defense Lawyer Ethics to explain why Clinton wasn’t merely right to use deceit and character assassination of a 12-year old rape victim to get her rapist client off: according to Marcotte, Clinton was super-right to use deceit and character assassination of a 12-year old rape victim to get her rapist client off  because she’s Hillary Clinton:

Defense attorneys have an unpleasant but necessary job, and Clinton did what she was obligated to do, which was to give her client a constitutionally mandated adequate defense. … As long as juries keep acquitting based on this myth that women routinely make up rape accusations for the hell of it, defense attorneys will continue to use it. The problem here is a larger culture that promotes rape myths, not defense attorneys who exploit these myths in last-ditch attempts to get acquittals for rapists who have overwhelming evidence against them.

According to Marcotte, everyone else uses rape myths, so the legal standard is to use rape myths, so Clinton was just giving her client the benefit of a really good defense by using rape myths and she should be praised for doing this because it had to be super hard for her to shed her principles that way, but, by the way, if a frat brother uses a rape myth, even if there’s no rape involved, even if he’s just making a bad joke, he deserves to be destroyed, preferably by Amanda Marcotte, Hillary Clinton, and millions of other women.

Yes, this is the way the Academic Feminists think.  I think it has something to do with all that mascara intersecting ink from bad tattoos and shards of bad prose by Judith Butler in the dark little place where your heart’s supposed to be.  Other people just call it identity politics.

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Amanda Marcotte, Defense Ethics Specialist, With Cat

The Academic Feminists are certainly showing their tushes with this defense-of-Hillary-defending-the-child-rapist-thing.  At least the masks are off.

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Wicker Women

But there is another story here, one that it would behoove the conservative critics of Academic Feminism to remember as they fight back against the guilt-by-identity regime. The lesson is this: in the real world, in real courts, real rape victims are still being subjected to such horrific, humiliating injustices, and real rapists and child molesters are still walking away from their crimes in nearly every case.

Forget the idiotic academic fake statistics that claim one in five women are raped in college for a moment: in the real courts, one in five rape victims don’t ever get a day in court.  Hell, more than four in five rape victims don’t ever get a day in court.  So while you’re busy fighting the Academic Feminists, do not make the mistake of believing that what you see happening on college campuses has any bearing on the real criminal justice system.

And when you’re done demanding justice for yourself, you should demand justice for victims of real rape, lest you become like the Campus Feminists you’re fighting — lest you become interested in injustice only when it affects you and people who look like you.

Once you’re done being disgusted by the glee that Hillary Clinton expressed in recounting her clever deceits that freed a child rapist, don’t get gleeful yourself over Clinton’s comeuppance: there’s still a child victim involved, and nothing about what happened to her is funny.  There’s still an injustice to be righted.

The Hillary Clinton rape defense is also an important story because it lays bare the perverse lies that pass for criminal defense and the sleazy tactics that warp rules of evidence.  If conservatives really care about right and wrong and justice and injustice and toppling identity politics, they cannot draw a circle around these real injustices committed against rape victims and say: this has nothing to do with me because I’ve been persecuted by the Campus Feminists.

There are many thousands of rape victims, hundreds of thousands of them, victims of real rape, who have  been denied justice.  Hillary Clinton’s giggly story shows how easy it was in 1975 to get a rapist off, and things haven’t changed as much as one might think today.

We need conservative men to be willing to stand up for these victims, because the campus feminists don’t care about them.  That little raped girl isn’t responsible for speech codes and campus tribunals against frats.  Rapists still routinely walk because of warped rules of evidence and prejudiced jurors who believe they’re sticking it to the man, or sticking it to some feminist, or playing Atticus Finch by springing a predator back onto the streets.  Child molesters still routinely plead down to time served, or less.  If the conservative movement is going to engage the subject of rape, they should also stand up for these rape victims instead of putting all their energy into battling feminists in the fantasy-realm of academia.  It would be nice to see Minding the Campus and Truth Revolt and Phi Beta Cons expand their interrogation of injustice and rape to include the real courts.

Scoring political points isn’t everything.  Only people like Amanda Marcotte and Hillary Clinton should be guilty of an accusation like that one

 

 

 

Alex Jones and Eric Holder Sing the Same Cynical Song About Police Brutality — And Then Cops Die

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 Alex Jones (the politically elastic InfoWars host) and Attorney General Eric Holder (no introduction needed) both routinely rally their troops by crying wolf about police brutality.  Jones encourages his libertarian followers to harass police and to view them as stormtroopers; Holder uses the power of the Executive Branch to warp criminal justice via the race card, imposing punitive oversight over state and local police on the grounds of “racial discrimination,” and encouraging minority populations to view police as racist persecutors.

So when police get assassinated by violent black power thugs or drug-addled white power wannabes, as happened to Officers Beck and Soldo in Las Vegas this week, Eric Holder and Alex Jones both deserve censure.  Did they put the guns in the assassins’ hands?  No.  But they encourage such events, and then they exploit them for cheap political gain while police attend their colleagues’ funerals then put themselves on the line of fire again.

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  Officer Alyn Beck

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Officer Igor Soldo

Of course, Eric Holder is the most powerful person in law enforcement in America while Alex Jones is just a radio talk show host.  But both of them are tearing away at the social fabric relating to law enforcement in similar ways.

It is perverse that we have, in Eric Holder, an Attorney General who has repeatedly sided with violent cop-killers and against police.  Throughout Holder’s private and public career, he has taken extreme positions against police safety, agitated for the release of cop-killers and terrorists, and even secured the release of terrorist cop killers via Bill Clinton’s presidential pardons.  Holder does not oppose the spilling of police blood so long as the cop killer is a leftist; he only cares when he can score political points by accusing anyone and everyone on the right for cop killings committed by fringe, allegedly right-wing types.

Holder also has the power to define the system’s response to crimes, and he is largely responsible (along with Elena Kagan and Bill Clinton back in 1997) for the creation of hate crime laws that make the murders of some types of people more important than the murders of other types of people.

Thanks to Eric Holder, the murders of Las Vegas Police Officers Igor Soldo and Alyn Beck will not be counted as hate crimes because the Department of Justice doesn’t count police as victims of hate.  If they did — if they counted as hate crime not only the killings but the assaults, attempted murders, verbal abuse, and other hatred directed generally at police, then police would rank among the most vulnerable hate crime victims in America.

But Holder would never let that stand.

Alex Jones is just a radio talk show host, but he uses his bully pulpit to dehumanize police in other ways: he accuses them of crimes against humanity and of taking part in ornate deceptions of the public through “false flag” events.  Though Jones claims that he is really blaming the government and not ordinary police officers for “false flags,” that claim is a lie: he spews rage about police “stormtroopers,” and his websites are festooned with images of cops purportedly responsible for beating and torturing civilians.

Jones tells his listeners that police are guilty of perpetrating atrocities against the American public: he says they are the ones who helped the U.S. government cover-up its role in the terrorist attacks that killed thousands on 9/11.  He says they are the ones who murdered the schoolchildren in Sandy Hook, if there were any children murdered at all.  He says the police set off the bombs at the Boston marathon, if there were bombs at all and that police were the killers in the Aurora movie theater massacre, if there was a massacre at all.  Jones really says these things: every time he calls these massacres “false flag” events what he is saying is that either people didn’t really die or the police are the ones who killed them at the behest of our government.

As I wrote in 2010:

[P]olice everywhere are paying the price for the anti-cop rhetoric surfacing in political speech and political activism across the political spectrum these days.  This anti-cop drumbeat is always the same, whether it comes from the White House or a fringe anti-government website, from libertarian hysterics on the right or criminal rights activists on the left.

In 2009, four Seattle Police were assassinated in cold blood by Maurice Clemmons as they sat in a restaurant in a town near Seattle.  Clemmons, a violent career criminal and rapist, had told numerous people of his plans to assassinate police, and after the killings he became a cause celebré among anti-cop leftist activists in Seattle and California.  Before the killings, he had been granted leniency by half a dozen judges and also by then-Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, who has refused to apologize for his role in freeing Clemmons, who went on to rape, brutalize and murder dozens of victims in several states, including these fallen heroes.

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Seattle Police Sergeant Mark Renninger and Officers Tina Griswold,                                                                                 Ronald Owens, and Greg Richards, murdered by Maurice Clemmons in 2009.

Also in 2009, serial rapist Lovelle Mixon became a left-wing counterculture hero for gunning down four police officers in Oakland, California.  Occupy protesters and activists from Oakland’s deeply anti-cop culture celebrated Mixon after the murders, just as they have long celebrated Mumia Abu Jamal, another cold-blooded cop killer.

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Sergeants Ervin Romans, Daniel Sakai, Mark Dunakin, and Officer John Hege                                                                   murdered in Oakland in March, 2009 by Lovelle Mixon

Also in 2009, Richard Poplowski, a white supremacist, murdered three police officers and severely wounded two others during a domestic violence call to his mother’s home.  Killed by Poplowski were Officers Paul Sciullo, Eric Kelly, and Stephen Mayhle.

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Officer Paul Sciullo

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Officer Stephen Mayle

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In each of these cases and also in the Las Vegas killings yesterday, men with long histories of violence, mental instability, race hatred, substance abuse, and animosity towards law enforcement ambushed or assassinated police officers.  But you would not know the similarities in these cases by reading your daily newspaper or even looking up official statistics about police killers: newspapers, taking their cues from leftist organizations like the Southern Poverty Law Center and Eric Holder’s Justice Department, identify only the right-wing killers as “political” killers of police.

Alex Jones is half-right when he says that he is being singled out for blame for the Las Vegas killings because he is a conservative: he is right that conservative anti-cop agitators get singled out while left-wing agitators don’t get singled out for identical behavior.  But the solution isn’t to give Jones a pass: the solution is to blame left-wingers who incite anti-police violence as well.

Left-wing political cop killers like Mumia Abu Jamal and the fugitive serial cop assassin Assata Shakur are celebrated and defended by the New York Times and by professors at our most prestigious universities.  They are mooned over by ethical buffoons like Terry Gross of NPR.  They are given radio shows on the taxpayer’s dime on NPR to spew their race hatred and hatred of police.  NPR and Terry Gross and the New York Times and all the Harvard professors agitating for Mumia and sheltering Assata Shakur deserve the same sort of blame that Alex Jones gets.

That would be fair.  Also fair: investigating Eric Holder for bias and fraud whenever he and his favorite propagandists at the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti-Defamation League create deceptive “statistics” and “reports” that are no more than bombastic political lying designed to blame the Tea Party for violent acts committed by others.

In addition to perverting the mission of the Justice Department by playing partisan politics, Holder, the SPLC, the ADL and the mainstream media are all missing (or actively suppressing) the real story of a dangerous anti-police movement that gains its power not from the Tea Party (a law-abiding, peaceful movement which has been much maligned) but from an unholy alliance of druggy leftist anarchists, druggy right-wing anarchists, and druggy individuals with no discernible politics who nonetheless feed off the paranoia of sites such as InfoWars on the far right, Critical Resistance on the far left, and Cop-Watch on the fringes of both fringes.

As soon as news of the police murders in Las Vegas broke, Alex Jones went on the air and predictably declared the event a “false flag” designed by the government to discredit . . . Alex Jones.  The SPLC’s Mark Potok hit the news circuit with his own false flag, trying to tar the Tea Party with the actions of the Vegas killers despite the fact that killers Jerad and Amanda Miller were kicked out of the only patriot citizen event (at the Cliven Bundy ranch) they were known to have attended (and even the Bundy ranch standoff was not widely endorsed by Tea Party activists).    CNN shamelessly regurgitated Mark Potok’s line, reporting that the Millers had been seen at the Bundy Ranch but leaving out the fact that the Bundy family made them leave.  On his radio show, Alex Jones shamelessly ranted for hours about how he was the real victim of the Vegas shootings.  In coming weeks, Eric Holder will doubtlessly use the shootings to ramp up the Department of Justice’s scrutiny of Tea Party groups and military veterans (though the Millers were neither veterans nor members of any known Tea Party).

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Not the Tea Party

To Eric Holder, cop killers present opportunities for cold-blooded political calculation; to InfoWars’ Alex Jones, they represent an opportunity to grow audience share by egging on viewers to believe they are being persecuted by a”military-industrial police state.”  As I wrote in 2011, it takes a village to kill a cop.  The village invented by these two ideologues is a very ugly place to be.

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If You’re Still Thinking Bob Barr Might Make A Good Candidate Despite That Baby Doc Thing . . .

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I urge you to take a few more strolls down memory lane.  Let’s take the older post first.  Note the date:

September, 2011: Gaming The System: DragonCon Founder Edward Kramer Caught With Another Boy 

“Are we actually supposed to believe that Bob Barr and his partner, Edwin Marger, knew nothing about Ed Kramer’s real physical condition when they claimed he was too sick to attend court in 2009, or that he had basically fled what little court-ordered control they had managed to wrangle for him under extremely questionable circumstances?  Well, here’s some clues:

Ed Kramer sporting a Barr ’08 button

Here’s Ed Kramer in either 2007 or 2008.  He claimed he was too sick to stand trial for molestation, but he looks like he was having a really good time campaigning for his lawyer, Libertarian presidential candidate Bob Barr.  If anyone knows more about this photo, please contact me.

Ed Kramer at the 2008 DragonCon

Here’s Ed Kramer hanging out at DragonCon when he was supposed to be housebound and in such serious pain from a “spinal injury” that he couldn’t stay awake for trial.  Hundreds of people saw him hanging out at a hotel in downtown Atlanta after midnight, chilling with some guy in latex shorts carrying a bongo drum.  What, they couldn’t pick up a phone when they saw the following story in the newspaper a few months later?  You know . . . acting to protect kids from getting raped, like their favorite superhero might do?

Read the rest of my 2011 post here

Now fast-forward a mere 26 months.  Bob’s client didn’t waste much time after Barr got him sprung from protective custody . . . again, check the date:

December, 2013:  Ed Kramer Guilty of Child Molestation: Now Will Bob Barr Face Consequences for His Role in the Deception?

After leaving Congress in 2003, Georgia Congressman Bob Barr reinvented himself politically in dramatic ways.  He aligned with the ACLU, began advocating for the legalization of marijuana, and ran for president on the 2008 Libertarian Party ticket.  Now Barr is attempting to rejoin the Republican and conservative mainstream in a bid to secure Georgia’s 11th District congressional seat, where he is currently a leading contender.

Barr’s about-face on issues that alienate conservative voters left many wondering what he really stands for.  His role in the notoriously corrupt defense of now-convicted child molester Ed Kramer should raise more questions in voters’ minds.  Here is my previous post on Kramer’s decade-long manipulation of the justice system.

Edward Kramer, co-founder of the sci-fi and fantasy convention, Dragonconpled guilty in a Georgia courtroom yesterday to three counts of child molestation in a case that has been delayed thirteen years, thanks to repeated efforts by Kramer himself to claim medical incapacity.  Barr served as Kramer’s attorney until early 2013, when he decided to run for office again.  But Barr did not just serve as Kramer’s lawyer: he held the sci-fi purveyor up as the victim of a religion-fuelled witch-hunt; he helped him deceive the court regarding his client’s capacity to sit through a trial, and he helped him acquire an eyebrow-raising bond agreement that enabled Kramer to flee the state illegally, resulting in Kramer’s arrest in 2012 for endangering another child — a 14 year old boy Kramer had in his motel room in Connecticut.

As if these facts aren’t bad enough, Barr used the molester’s defense to promote his new libertarian politics.  You cannot separate the Kramer case from the person Barr is offering to voters, even if he tries to distance himself now.

In 2007 Barr told an audience at the Federalist Society that Kramer was a victim of his new pet peeve, prosecutorial over-reach.  Despite the fact that it was Kramer himself who had created the delays, Barr insisted that it was the fault of the state.  The video of Barr promoting Kramer’s case as a civil rights issue has, curiously, been scrubbed from the internet in the last 24 hours, but Barr’s incredibly sophomoric amicus brief on behalf of Kramer is going to be harder to erase.  Barr should be called on to re-release the video: he isn’t running for dog-catcher; he’s running for Congress, and his behavior and expressed beliefs between 2003 and 2013 should not be hidden from voters this way.”

Read the rest of my 2013 post here

Now — back to the future:  for those of you gearing up to send in whiny comments about how “everyone deserves a defense lawyer,” don’t bother.  Of course they do.  What child molesters don’t deserve is decades on the run while their lawyers use dirty tricks to keep them from facing justice in a courtroom.  And that is what Bob Barr did for this piece of human trash.  I don’t see how anyone could seriously believe Barr did not know that his (now former) client’s alleged “profound disability” was and is a stunt.

Porter on [April 2013] called two witnesses who testified about seeing Kramer, a science-fiction author and film buff, at movie sets in Kentucky and Connecticut taking behind-the-scenes pictures and video clips. Both the witnesses, one who was a makeup artist and another who was an audio/visual producer, testified that Kramer seemed to have no serious problem breathing, standing or walking around. They also said Kramer did not have an oxygen tank with him at the movie sets

Someone in the media ought to ask candidate Barr how much he billed his client — cough, the taxpayer — AND cost the court system — cough, the taxpayer — for everything from Ed Kramer’s faux vapors before every court date for over ten years to the medical privileges he demanded in prison to the gas mileage on the cop car that had to haul Kramer back from his 2012 woodland adventure in Connecticut.  Some details are here, but it’s hardly the final tally.

 

Will Privatizing Child Protection Protect Georgia’s Children? Yes and No.

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As Georgia prepares to follow in Florida’s footsteps in privatizing child protection services, there has been a lot of politicking but little talk about the real issues that lead to failures to protect children “in the system.”  Privatization in Florida has been a very mixed bag, with some counties improving their performance and other counties mired in scandals involving the private non-profit agencies hired to protect children.  It’s reasonable to expect that Georgia will fare a little better, but don’t expect the failure rate to drop — or rise — significantly.

The failures lie in policies enforced by the courts, and nobody is talking about reforming those policies.

Like Florida, Georgia plans to eventually privatize the services that come after an investigation has determined a child is in danger, namely: foster care, family “reunification” interventions, and adoption.  State workers will continue to be responsible for investigating abuse, and courts will still be responsible for deciding if a child should be removed from a home, returned to a home, or adopted.

Private agencies do a great job with adoption, and some of them do a better job than the state in supervising foster care.  Much of this care is already done through public-private partnerships in Georgia.  But in all the politicized talk about private versus public, little has been said about the real  problem with our child protection services.

The problem is the mandate to keep families together or achieve “reunification” as soon as possible.

Approximately a decade ago, many states began to move towards a model of keeping families together, no matter the cost.  Florida went further than Georgia, though it wasn’t an issue tied to privatization because that part of child protection is still performed by state agencies.

And now Florida is counting the bodies.

In an extraordinary report, the Miami Herald investigated the deaths of 477 children who  had prior contacts with child protection services.  477 — since just 2008.  The Herald makes a strong case for blaming the mandate for “family preservation” for many of those deaths:

They tumbled into canals and drowned, baked in furnace-like cars, were soaked in corrosive chemicals, incinerated, beaten mercilessly, and bounced off walls and concrete pavement. One was jammed into a cooler posthumously; others were wrapped like a mummy to silence their cries, flattened by a truck, overdosed and starved. An infant boy was flung from a moving car on an interstate. A 2-year-old girl was killed by her mom’s pet python.

The children were not just casualties of bad parenting, but of a deliberate shift in Florida child welfare policy. DCF leaders made a decision, nearly 10 years ago, to reduce by as much as half the number of children taken into state care, adopting a philosophy known as family preservation. They also, simultaneously, slashed services, monitoring and protections for the increased number of children left with their violent, neglectful, mentally ill or drug-addicted parents.

Public or private, the child protection system is dealing with multigenerational problems that are far more severe than most people realize.  It’s easy to criticize government social workers, or to lash out at efforts by private agencies.  The hard part is acknowledging that “family preservation” may be the wrong goal:

Rather than go to court to force parents to get treatment or counseling, the state often relied on “safety plans” — written promises by parents to sin no more. Many of the pledges carried no meaningful oversight. Children died — more than 80 of them — after their parents signed one or, in some cases, multiple safety plans.

• Parents were given repeated chances to shape up, and failed, and failed and failed again, and still kept their children. In at least 34 cases, children died after DCF had logged 10 or more reports to the agency’s abuse and neglect hotline. Six families had been the subject of at least 20 reports.

The decision to prioritize family unification was made by bureaucrats and politicians from across the political spectrum.  Liberals defend state agencies and argue that biological parents should receive as many resources as possible to keep their children; conservatives argue for the primacy of family and against state involvement.  Failure is bipartisan:

“It’s the system that’s broken. When numbers take over instead of outcomes for people, you are doomed to failure,” said James Harn, a 30-year law enforcement officer who spent his last nine years as a commander supervising child abuse investigators at the Broward Sheriff’s Office before leaving a year ago. “They want to keep families together, but at what cost?”

Prioritizing family preservation is just one policy error.  Others involve the increasingly hands-off attitude towards the family arrangements of women living on public services and the leniency granted to serial offenders in the courts.  
Social workers have had little power since the 1960’s to insist that women on welfare live alone with their children, rather than inviting a boyfriend, or a series of men into their state-subsidized homes.  These unattached men frequently abuse the children they are living with:

The night before Aaden Batista died, his killer played a baseball game on his Xbox, smoked marijuana and gave the toddler a bath.

As Aaden’s mother, Whitney Flower, worked as a medical assistant at a nearby hospital, Jason Padgett Sr. prepared the toddler for bed, putting on his diaper before, ultimately, viciously shaking him and slamming his head on the floor. . .

Aaden became part of the yearly count of children killed at the hands of paramours — child welfare’s oddly genteel term to describe boyfriends or girlfriends of custodial parents. Protecting children from abusive paramours is one of the great challenges facing the Department of Children & Families.

“Paramours are a huge red flag,” said Richard Gelles, dean of the School of Social Policy and Practice at the University of Pennsylvania, as well as chairman of child welfare at the school. “They are enormously over-represented as the slayers of young children.”

Under-prosecution and under-incarceration, especially for domestic violence, presents another problem.  Expect this problem to grow worse as “Right on Crime” Republicans, left and right-wing libertarians, leftists, and liberals join forces to shrink our criminal  justice system and empty the prisons.  Their political kumbaya moment is going to mean more violence, more crime, and more murders.   You need only peruse the Miami child death report to find evidence of hundreds of people who have been granted serial leniency in our allegedly-harsh justice system:

In the pre-dawn hours of May 5, 2009, Jasmine Bedwell had to make a decision: Take more blows or more chokes — but try to rescue her son from the clutches of her enraged boyfriend — or go find help. She left and borrowed a cellphone to call 911.

 
 
 

 

 

Mumia Activist Voted Down for DOJ Civil Rights Position!

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This is what justice looks like:

“Senate rejects Obama appointment of Debo Adegbile to top civil rights post”

We need to thank Democrats and Republicans who voted against this nomination:

Casey Statement
on Debo Adegbile Nomination

Washington, DC- Today, U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) released the following statement on the nomination of Debo Adegbile to the position of Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights:
“I believe that every person nominated by the President of the United States for a high level position such as Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights should be given fair and thoughtful consideration as senators discharge their responsibility of ‘advise and consent’. I respect that our system of law ensures the right of all citizens to legal representation no matter how heinous the crime. At the same time, it is important that we ensure that Pennsylvanians and citizens across the country have full confidence in their public representatives – both elected and appointed. The vicious murder of Officer Faulkner in the line of duty and the events that followed in the 30 years since his death have left open wounds for Maureen Faulkner and her family as well as the City of Philadelphia. After carefully considering this nomination and having met with both Mr. Adegbile as well as the Fraternal Order of Police, I will not vote to confirm the nominee.”

Maureen Faulkner: Stop Mumia Abu Jamal’s Lawyer, Debo Adegbile, From Department of Justice Appointment

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There is a Change.org petition drive you need to act on TODAY!

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Vote “No” to the Confirmation of Debo Adegbile to the Department of Justice
Petition by Maureen Faulkner
Los Angeles, CA

PLEASE SHARE THIS PETITION WITH FAMILY, FRIENDS, AND COLLEAGUES!

As early as Tuesday [UPDATE: THE VOTE HAS BEEN DELAYED UNTIL WEDNESDAY, MARCH 5], the Senate will vote to confirm Debo Adegbile as the next Assistant Attorney General to head the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice. This confirmation must be stopped.

Thirty years ago, Philadelphia Police Officer Daniel Faulkner was violently murdered by Mumia Abu-Jamal, a member of a racist group that advocated violence against police. A jury convicted him and sentenced him to death for the brutal crime.

In the three decades that followed, Abu-Jamal filed appeal after appeal – each rooted in lies, distortions and allegations of civil rights violations. Today, as Officer Faulkner lies in his grave, Abu-Jamal has become a wealthy celebrity and continues to spew his vitriol from prison.

Old wounds were ripped open again, and additional insult was brought upon our law enforcement community when President Obama nominated Mr. Adegbile for the Department of Justice post. Mr. Adegbile previously led the Legal Defense Fund at the NAACP. In that position, Mr. Adegbile chose to throw the weight and resources of his organization behind Abu-Jamal. Attorneys working under Mr. Adegbile’s supervision have stood before rallies of Abu-Jamal supporters and openly professed that it was “an extreme honor” to represent the man who put a hollow based bullet into Officer Faulkner’s brain as he lay on the ground wounded, unarmed, and defenseless.

While Mr. Adegbile may be a well-qualified and competent litigator, through his words, his decisions, and his actions he has clearly and repeatedly demonstrated that he is not the best person to fill this position. Clearly there are others with similar qualifications that would be better choices.

The thought that Mr. Adegbile would be rewarded, in part, for the work he did for Officer Faulkner’s killer is revolting. Please set aside any partisan feelings you have and do the right thing when you vote on Mr. Adegbile’s confirmation. Please vote “no.”

………………………………………………….

Previous TINATRENT.COM Posts On Officer Faulkner and the Pro-Mumia Movement:

Mumia Abu-Jamal and Marty Hittleman: California Teachers Endorse a Cop Killer, Get Caught, Blame Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker

Maureen Faulkner is Right: The Fight Against Mumia Will Never Be Over, as Amnesty International Proves with Their Holiday Catalogue

More on Mumia

Martin Preib versus the Innocence Industry

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An amazing article by Martin Preib, a Chicago cop who exposes the dark underbelly of the “innocence” industry, in which scores of law and journalism students and their professors resort to deception in their desire to play Atticus Finch to criminals who aren’t really wrongful convicted:

Wrongful conviction settlements are big business, but they are not always sensible. Chicago settles millions of dollars in cases where convicted offenders claim they were wrongfully convicted.

For a number of law firms, suing the city over wrongful convictions has become a kind of cottage industry. Inmates claim they were tortured and coerced into confessing. The offenders are freed from prison. Attorneys quickly initiate civil lawsuits against the city. Many people assume that a settlement signifies the police were culpable and had something to hide.

But this is not the truth in several key wrongful conviction cases, none more so than the Anthony Porter case, a double murder in 1982 in Washington Park on the South Side.

Preib shows how students and professors at Northwestern University and post-conviction lawyers didn’t even bother to interview the detectives involved in the conviction of Anthony Porter when they tried to exonerate Porter years later:

One common theme permeates the entire wrongful conviction movement: the police are crooked, willing to coerce confessions from the wrong man, willing to frame the wrong man, torture him, even. Police are often accused of racism in wrongful conviction cases, that they don’t care about African-American suspects or their communities. Many of these accusations were lobbed against the detectives in the Porter case, one of the most crucial wrongful conviction cases in the state’s history.

That Martin Preib could singlehandedly, with no resources, uncover more evidence than armies of well-connected, well-funded professors, students, and lawyers speaks volumes about the dynamics of post-conviction criminal justice activism.

The media repeats the claims of the Innocence Industry uncritically and dumbly parrots their nonsensical “statistics” about so-called “causes of wrongful conviction” — statistics and causes that are a pure fabrication.  If the Innocence Project were actually trying to create real wrongful conviction statistics, they would have to do several things they don’t do now — first and foremost contextualize their cases within the numerical universe of rightful convictions.

They would also have to stop inventing “causes of wrongful conviction” that highlight only one aspect of a case, often something minor or irrelevant to the conviction but that serves their ideological interests.

They would have to acknowledge that the most common “cause” of wrongful conviction is being a criminal and running with other criminals.  Lying for a criminal friend, being a non-DNA depositing co-conspirator in a murder that leaves no witness, dealing in stolen items from the crime, and letting your own brother go to prison in your place are all causes of wrongful conviction that you won’t find anywhere in the Innocence Project’s highly touted “statistics.”

Several of the Innocence Project’s most high-profile clients are serial rapists popped for the wrong crime BECAUSE they were committing similar crimes in the area or had done so elsewhere.  The media avoids mentioning this part of the story because they want to act out their own Atticus Finch drama.  Fabulist journalists go looking only for the story they want to hear, as Prieb demonstrates:

One wonders when journalism professors started teaching students to get only one side of a story. It turned out that, during the Innocence Project  investigation, the detectives say that neither Protess [head of the Innocence Project at Northwestern] nor his journalism students ever attempted to sit down with the detectives and listen to their account.

Finally, many Innocence Project clients were not actually innocent at all.

See here and here for examples of the misbehavior of activists wanting to spring guilty men to gratify their own self-regard.

I have repeatedly urged Innocence Project activists to use some of their vast resources and manpower to try to identify offenders who got away with murder and rape.  Merely saying this is a great way to get laughed at — or accused of racism, the movement’s eternal fallback pose.

The Martin Preibs of this world toil on their own in the shadows to correct grotesque injustices, as the defense bar and their media lackeys labor to spring anyone and everyone from prison, regardless of their crimes.

Imagine if someone made that into a movie.

Crossing Lines: What’s Wrong with the Wrongful Conviction Movement by Martin Preib

Martin Preib’s Amazon Page

 

 

The Daryle Edward Jones Case Grows Worse

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Yesterday, I posted about yet another heinous sex crime committed by yet another felon who should have been in prison but was granted leniency and was free on the streets.

The information I had yesterday was limited to what I could find in public incarceration records, but today the Athens (Georgia) newspaper has more details about Jones’ criminal history.

And they are damning, not only because he got out early for a murder he committed in 1994, but even after he got out early and immediately committed another crime, the state essentially passed on an opportunity to put him behind bars for that crime for a substantial period of time.

Here’s the story:

Jones was paroled in 2010 [for the 1994 murder], but he was quickly back in prison.

In August 2011 he was arrested on stalking and terroristic threat charges for having threatened to murder a woman, according to records. The arrest sent him back to prison for a parole violation but he was paroled again in October 2013.

Two months later, on Dec. 23, Jones was convicted for the 2011 stalking and terroristic threats charges and sentenced to 200 days of incarceration with six years of probation. He was given credit for time already served.

Jones has been treated to serial leniency, which is the default choice of our justice system nearly all the time.  In 1994, he was allowed to plead (presumably down from murder) to voluntary manslaughter, which put him back on the streets.  Then he was given a mere 200 days (with credit for time served, no days, actually) for stalking and terroristic threats committed in 2011.

These aren’t “nothing” sentences.  But they do reflect the normalization of reduced sentencing throughout the criminal justice system.  Academicians, the media, and leftists relentlessly accuse our justice system of being too harsh on offenders.  But exactly the opposite its true.  It would not have been too harsh to sentence Jones to life without parole for murder in 1994, but he got 20 years instead, and then he got released four years early, originally serving only 16 years for taking a life.   And while we don’t know all the details of the 2011 case, I doubt it would have been “harsh” at all to sentence him to something more than time served for stalking and threatening to kill a woman.

Serial leniency has now resulted in a 14-year old girl being kidnapped, raped and tortured:

 [L]ast Wednesday, Athens-Clarke County police said that Jones lured a 14-year-old girl into a vehicle then locked the doors so she could not escape.

He allegedly drove the girl to an isolated location where he pulled a gun and sexually assaulted her, police said.

Jones, of Oak Hill Drive, was arrested two days later on charges of rape, kidnapping, aggravated assault, aggravated child molestation and aggravated sodomy.

Chalk up another rape to the anti-incarceration activists who shill the fantasy that our prisons are stuffed with victims of harsh, unjustly long sentencing — “victims” who must be petted, celebrated, sympathized with, released early, and “re-entered” into society on our dime.  That little girl’s horrific ordeal is more blood on your hands.

 

Let Out Early for Voluntary Manslaughter, Now Accused of Kidnapping and Rape

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Here’s another one.

Another what?

Another offender who should have been in prison but was let out early, and some innocent child paid the price.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution is reporting that Daryle Edward Jones kidnapped and raped a young girl in Athens, Georgia:

Jones, 41, has been charged with rape, aggravated assault, aggravated child molestation, aggravated sodomy and kidnapping in the case. He remained in the county jail Saturday afternoon.

Here’s what they did not report: Daryle Edward Jones was supposed to be in prison until April.  Or at least that is how long he would have served, had he served his entire previous sentence.  Which, of course, nobody ever does, but isn’t it nice to imagine that somebody, somewhere, even once, would serve all their damn time?

In April of 1994, Jones committed voluntary manslaughter.  It’s hard to know from the online records what he really did, but suffice to say that getting 20 years in 1994 was the maximum for that crime and serving nearly all of it was unusual, so I suspect at least one of two things:

  • The crime was particularly heinous and the voluntary manslaughter was offered only with an agreement to serve a long sentence.
  • Jones, who was 21 at the time, must have had a terrible juvenile record, likely sealed.

So Darlye Jones went to prison for voluntary manslaughter in April, 1995 (he’d probably had a year in jail before that) and got out June, 2010, fifteen years later.  Then he was back in prison from January, 2012 to October, 2013, possibly for a parole violation because no other crime is listed.  Four months after finally being released, he has committed a heinous kidnapping/rape.

What is there to learn from this?

Under-prosecution may be the problem.

My guess — and it’s just a guess — is that Jones had a prolific and violent criminal career before being put away at the age of 21.  Yet he was only charged with one crime, which is entirely typical, even today.  Contrary to what all liberals and all those Right on Crime Grover Norquist types and Reason libertarians believe, our criminal justice system is wildly lenient towards nearly all criminals and expends the resources to put away only a tiny fraction of people who commit even serious crimes.

And given his current crime and the severity of his previous sentence, he may have been a sex offender but the sex offense was not kept on the table for some reason.  He’s not in the sex offender registry, as far as I can tell.

There is troubling talk across the Right today about prosecutorial over-reach.  I consider such talk to be almost entirely anecdotal and wildly out of touch with reality in our criminal courts — and motivated in large part by Alex Jones and his ilk, who have it out for police in an utterly personal and unhinged way.

Yes, the Department of Justice in Washington and Eric Holder in particular are troubling, and Holder is openly contemptuous of the rule of law and treats victims of crime with contempt — except those who fit certain categories of so-called hate crime that he invented in 1999.  Holder is pro-criminal, anti-victim and almost entirely lawless, but Eric Holder does not represent law enforcement in the states.

The sort of leniency that lets a killer walk free to rape a child is what too often represents criminal justice in the states.  We need longer sentences and more law enforcement, not less of both.  How many times do we have to see stories like this?  Let’s talk about what the feds are up to, certainly.  But don’t conflate that with state courts where, especially in urban areas, crimes like burglary aren’t even being investigated, let alone prosecuted anymore, and prolific criminals still have most of their charges dropped against them every day.

Here is a terrific response by “David” to yet another anecdotal complaint about “over-prosecution” from the Right.  It is in response to this (uncharacteristically) lazy screed in what is usually an excellent source on crime policy, City Journal:

Before every reader of this article jumps on the “let’s bash prosecutors” bandwagon, the good professor’s thoughts warrant a bit of careful consideration. Professor Bhide is, after all, a PROFESSOR of law, not a practitioner. And his online list of accomplishments shows that he has never practiced criminal law at any time in his illustrious career. Indeed, his expertise lies more in the realm of business and, perhaps, economics. Having said this, Professor Bhede is correct to be outraged by Ms. Khobraghade’s arrest and the humiliating and inexcusable way she was treated while incarcerated. Professor Bhede is also correct when he expresses concern about the proliferation of federal criminal laws. And perhaps Professor Bhede is also on to something when he quotes the following from the ABA (though this organization is not particularly well-known for either its objectivity or its lack of bias): “‘Individual citizen behavior now potentially subject to federal criminal control has increased in astonishing proportions.'”

But the key words in the quote Professor Bhede uses from the ABA are “potentially subject”. For even though there are too many federal criminal laws, it has been my actual experience that the feds prosecute only a tiny fraction of the cases they could file. Additionally, the feds file ONLY when they are assured of victory (not the standard for filing a criminal charge, contrary to Eric Holder’s excuses to the contrary) and potential good press. Professor Bhede lists a number of activities that Congress has criminalized since our Constitution’s ratification. But the impetus for the “busybody Congresses” that pass these laws usually takes the form of busybody groups and individuals who believe this or that activity should be criminalized. Prohibition readily comes to mind. …

So for those who are ready to jump up and say, “Professor Bhide is absolutely correct! Federal prosecutors need to be reigned in!”, I would respond that too often these very same prosecutors do too little with regard to crimes that directly impact the safety and welfare of our society. And I say this because I spent almost 20 years as a state prosecutor, in a major metropolitan area, where I concentrated primarily on handling felony narcotics dealing and firearms offenses. (To those who would protest and say that I was part of the problem because I was part of the “War on Drugs”, I would respond as follows: Please go tell this to the little 75 or 80 year old woman who is afraid to go out on her front porch because a group of punks–usually armed–are slinging crack, coke, or meth in her neighborhood. This person lives in fear for her life every day. Tell her that the street in front of her house is not a war zone. She’ll say you’re wrong.) Very little assistance was provided prosecuting these crimes by any of the U.S. Attorneys and their staffs in the city where I worked. I don’t know what, exactly, were the priorities of our resident U.S. Attorneys (several of them came and went during my time as a deputy prosecutor), but I do know that they couldn’t be bothered to help make our city’s streets and outlying areas safer. With the laws available to them, U.S. Attorneys can do a lot to put really bad people out of commission for very long periods of time. But if a certain crime (or group of crimes) aren’t on some important politician’s radar, well, such crimes won’t be prosecuted by a U.S. Attorney. …

Too many laws? Perhaps. Not enough use of many of the laws already in existence? Yes. …

 . . . read the whole thing here 

 

I Will Be on Cliff Kincaid’s Roku Show Wednesday Night Talking About Immigration . . .

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. . . the plight of American workers, and why Republicans and Libertarians don’t seem to care.

Who’s with us

Who’s against us

Who’s hiding behind trees pretending they have “no position at all”

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Tune in to the show on the America’s Survival website at 9:00 or on Roku at the America’s Survival channel.  Writes Cliff:

. . . watch it live on our homepage on Wednesday night at 9:pm Eastern www.usasurvival.org by clicking on the Roku image on the right side. 

 

On Adria Sauceda’s Murder

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Thanks to a commenter for saying what needs to be said about Adria’s murder:

“I’m Mexican, I live in Mexico and I don’t understand why the inmates’ families want mercy when they didn’t show any with their victims. They took away their lives, they took away all their dreams and hopes. They should be grateful they are going to die via lethal injection, not in a bizarre way their victims did.”

Heartbreaking photos of the child:

And the young woman, before she died:

And her parent’s hands, holding her:

 

Common Core: It Will Take A Village to Fight Their Village

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Recently, anti-Common Core activists in Florida and Georgia (and other states) were treated to the nugatory charms of the “listening tour.”  State education officials carefully concealed the piles of crumpled twenties that Bill Gates shoved in their knickers and turned out to quote listen to the public unquote.

 

In other words, they pretended to give opponents of Common Core little snippets of time to speak on a vast, all-encompassing education reform that they, the elected officials in charge of education policy, have been laundering like illicit meth profits behind closed doors for years.  And so of course the activists sounded outraged and often emotional: how on earth do you address a sweeping, transformative, mostly-concealed program that touches every aspect of the education system and have been foisted on the public through backdoor methods we still only barely understand — all in three minutes or less?

The real objective of the listening tour, of course, was to shut up opposition to Common Core by claiming they have listened to us and heard what we had to say so they can get back to doing politics without any more interference from the little people.  I’m not saying that all the officials sitting on the dais acted that way.  If you know your elected official, then you can gauge the spirit in which he or she participated.  And frankly, the only way to even register our opposition to Common Core is to turn out for such events.

That’s why it is so important to get to know your elected official and give them a chance to prove themselves to you.

Bad politics exist everywhere, but good politics are usually local politics.

The lesson of the listening tour is that we will need to work together better in the future if we are going to be effective against a highly-coordinated coalition made up of wealthy foundations, professional poverty activists, elected officials, education bureaucrats, ed school professors, PBS, Chamber of Commerce boosters, and teacher’s unions.

We have taken on a very large task: we are demonstrating the audacity of asking an entire bureaucracy to behave as if it actually works for the people.  So as they’re wiping the tears of mirth from their eyes, we need to be ready with a well-coordinated offense.  For this fight, we need parents, taxpayers, our own education professors, home-schoolers, retired teachers, researchers, lobbyists, organizers, and, most importantly, effective foot soldiers in every corner of every state.

It will take a village to take our villages back.  For some reason this makes me think of the fight scene in Anchorman (the first one, not the highly disappointing sequel).  Remember, PBS were the bad guys in that, too.

Listening tours are dog-and-pony shows that always entail a certain measure of showmanship and deception.  How could we have done better, with just three minutes each to speak?  If we had coalitions in place, it would have been easier to meet beforehand to coordinate a series of responses — small pieces adding up to a larger response.  A coalition also commands more media attention, and with that we could issue press releases in response to the listening tour format itself.  The education bureaucracy does not want to be put in the position of having to fight on an even playing field — this is why they have been resistant to agreeing to public debates while presenting the “listening tour” they control as their solution for public input.

Like the fight scene in Anchorman, the Common Core fight is a fight among interested parties — the public is largely sitting this one out.  Maybe they’re traumatized by childhood memories of WholeLanguage learning or just too busy working that second job to pay for somebody else’s healthcare — I don’t know.  But the Common Core advocates have made this a difficult fight by making the Common Core materials themselves difficult, if not impossible to access, and there are only so many hours in the day.  That’s another reason to put some energy into working together more efficiently.

Despite being a veteran of many public hearings, I came away from the Common Core listening tour surprised by the degree of contempt some (not all) elected officials involved felt comfortable heaping on their audiences . . . also known as their constituents . . . also known as their employers.  We are facing a situation the ancient Greeks referred to as catching your elected official with his hand stuck in the cookie jar, so feelings are understandably running high.  But that is no excuse for some of the behavior I witnessed.

In Dawsonville, Georgia, State Representative Brooks Coleman (R – 97), Chairman of the House Education Committee, set a particularly dismissive, hectoring tone.

And that was before he began grabbing people by the arms and berating them.

At a meeting that started in the evening after most attendees had clocked a day of work, Coleman played every time-wasting, status-asserting game in the book.  He delayed the meeting to indulge in obsequious, long-winded praise for the public college officials who gave him use of a school auditorium (in other words, state employees who work for us opened up a room that belongs to us, for our use).  To their credit, the officials looked embarrassed at Coleman’s faux fervent gratitude.  Then, he could barely contain his ire throughout the event.  Afterwards, as he worked the crowd, he actually grabbed my arm and shook it while hissing that I was wrong about Georgia accepting Gates funding to implement Common Core.

Of course, I was right and he was wrong.  What’s more interesting is that we both knew it, yet he hung onto my arm and stuck with the lie, too.

Prove it, he said.

I just did.  Again.

Moments like these can tell you everything you need to know about a political fight.  Here are some of the things I observed:

  • They know the gig is up, and sunlight is pouring in.  Both Brooks Coleman and I knew that we were standing in an auditorium built with my tax dollars, at an event subsidized by my tax dollars, and that he, an elected official paid with my tax dollars, was lying to me about money the state Department of Education had received from an unelected, unaccountable third party: Bill Gates.
  •  At that moment, Coleman felt indebted to Bill Gates in ways that he does not feel indebted to the actual citizens and taxpayers of Georgia — the people he is legally sworn to represent and is being paid to represent.  Coleman felt indebted enough to Gates to lie to hide the fact that Gates and his cohort are calling the shots within our education system.
  • Coleman keeps saying — and his counterparts in Florida say the same — that opponents of Common Core don’t know what the real curriculum looks like.  This is true — because they are doing everything in their power to keep the public from perusing it.  So we should follow his lead: the first thing we should do is demand access to all curricular materials.  Then we can have the debate about what is being taught in the schools that should have preceded the adoption of Common Core in the first place.  Thanks, Brooks.  Great idea.
  • Elsewhere, Coleman fibbed to the incurious mouthpieces who pretend to be political reporters at the Atlanta Journal Constitution.  To the mouthpieces, he said that the public at the speaking tours had delivered the following message to him: “Stick with the national set of academic standards called Common Core, superintendents, teachers and parents have told them.”  Of course this is not true.  The superintendents and teachers  may have said so, but during them time set aside for the public to comment, the attendees were overwhelmingly anti-Common Core.

    Coleman also told the story that Common Core was actually the invention of southern governors — and he was in on it — and so, he scolded, we don’t know what we’re talking about when we oppose it and talk about involvement by the federal government.  “Bet’cha didn’t know that” he challenged.  Since Mr. Coleman did not listen to my response that night, let me offer it again here:  Yes, I do know about the educational standards envisioned by the southern governors.  I also know about E.D. Hirsh’s admirable efforts to introduce dense, traditional content in K – 12 classrooms in New York City, efforts which are similarly cited as inspiring Common Core.

    But there’s a catch.  Neither the southern governors’ nor E.D. Hirsch’s vision are much in evidence in Common Core today.  They may have had a good idea at one time, but that good idea is not the thing that plops into your child’s hands from the pricey, jargon-laden textbook program firing up on Bill Gates’ donated tablets.

    The southern governors invented the idea that became Common Core.  That doesn’t make the current boondoggle more palatable: it just makes them more culpable for it.  Culpable for the Boondoggle is my idea for a slogan for this movement, by the way, but I’m flexible about that.

    So the listening tours were a colossal waste of time.  That was a feature, not a bug: they wasted your time and put you down and wore you out, and when you didn’t fall in line anyway, they simply lied to the media about what you said, and the media broadcast their lies for them.  Oh, and they made certain everyone saw the armed security guards at the entrances so they could make it seem as if we were a dangerous bunch.  That’s a strategy too.

    You still have to go back if there is another listening tour.  Just know what they’re going to pull this time, and be ready.

    The really exciting thing about the Common Core listening tours was that people showed up who don’t even participate in the anti-Common Core movement, and they had interesting arguments against Common Core.  There were professors of education and parents and retired teachers and principals.  No matter how hard the media works to make the movement seem like a fringe group, they are failing because that is a lie, too.  They will keep trying, and they will keep failing.

    Now is the time for us to assess who is with us and what we have to offer to each other.  In Florida, the Florida Stop Common Core Coalition is holding a coalition-building meeting on January 11.  If a representative from your group wants to attend — FSCCC is a coalition of groups, not individuals — contact Chrissy Blevio at their website, or contact this blog, tinatrent2@yahoo.com.  I will be running the training.

    Even if you aren’t in Florida, read Dr. Karen Effram’s essential analyses of Common Core legislation.  If you are in Georgia, the good ladies at the Educational Freedom Coalition are doing amazing work (order their bookmarks), as is Jane Robbins from the American Principles Project; Mary Grabar at Dissident Prof, and researcher extraordinaire Robin Eubanks at Invisible Serfs Collar — buy her book, Credentialed to Destroy:

    The Story Killers out in the Selous Foundation magazine.  She writes:

    Every concerned parent, grandparent, and citizen should read this, for Moore cuts through the obfuscation to reveal Common Core as “a complete consolidation and nationalization of a public education in America.” It’s the final step in a 50-year process of the progressive takeover of education.

    I concur: it’s an amazing book.  Read Mary’s review, and check out the Selous Foundation’s other education reports.

    They’ve had fifty years to break education: we’ve had just a few months to begin to figure this thing out.  We’re at the beginning of a long fight to bring back proven, traditional education.  They’re at the end of the time during which they thought they could get away with anything quietly.  The first public confrontation — the “listening” tours — gave us a lot of ammunition.  We know their excuses and we know what they think of us . . . and of themselves.  Read The Story Killers, get with a group, and get ready for the session.  This fight has just begun.

     

Why Build Permanent Coalitions to Fight the Common Core? Because This Fight is Going to be a Long One.

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The fight against Common Core is not going to end with the defeat of Common Core.

Too much damage has been done to education.  The damage emanates from the education schools, which were taken over by radicals back in the 1960’s and then became the stomping grounds for the most intellectually dim and narcissistic domestic terrorists of that era — people like Bill Ayers.    It was clever of the bomb-throwers to pack up their dynamite and turn to their daddies’ rolodexes to score jobs training future teachers, but they alone did not radicalize teacher education, of course.  It was the work of many hands.

I was at a Tea Party meeting in Manatee County and a retired teacher (you meet many retired teachers in the Tea Party) told me an interesting story: when she started in education, the college students who were training to become teachers were among the most conservative students on campuses. A few years later, they had become the most radical.  What happened?   For one thing, the end of the war in Vietnam coincided with the demise of the two-parent household among the poor — so, as activists flocked to education schools looking for new causes, K – 12 classrooms were becoming more chaotic and unstable because of broken homes.  It was a perfect storm.

That was more than forty years ago.

It is hard to quantify the harm that has been done to the discipline of teaching teachers in just a few generations.  Like everything else in higher education, radicalism protected by tenure grows exponentially, blotting out other possibilities for students and teachers, and many teaching schools are now largely irredeemable.  Today, a professor of education who so much as deigns to correct the grammar of his graduate students can face violent shaming and forced re-education at their hands, with full cooperation by the administration.  Few education professors remain who disapprove of such behavior, and fewer still are courageous enough to oppose it out loud.

Radicalism has been rendered so normative in higher education that the Maoist theories of Paulo Friere rank among the most-assigned readings for aspiring teachers throughout the United States.  To get a sense of the crisis in teaching teachers, read this 2009 essay about Paolo Friere and teacher’s colleges, by Sol Stern:

Since the publication of the English edition in 1970, Pedagogy of the Oppressed has achieved near-iconic status in America’s teacher-training programs. In 2003, David Steiner and Susan Rozen published a study examining the curricula of 16 schools of education—14 of them among the top-ranked institutions in the country, according to U.S. News and World Report—and found that Pedagogy of the Oppressed was one of the most frequently assigned texts in their philosophy of education courses. These course assignments are undoubtedly part of the reason that, according to the publisher, almost 1 million copies have sold, a remarkable number for a book in the education field.

The odd thing is that Freire’s magnum opus isn’t, in the end, abouteducation—certainly not the education of children. Pedagogy of the Oppressed mentions none of the issues that troubled education reformers throughout the twentieth century: testing, standards, curriculum, the role of parents, how to organize schools, what subjects should be taught in various grades, how best to train teachers, the most effective way of teaching disadvantaged students. This ed-school bestseller is, instead, a utopian political tract calling for the overthrow of capitalist hegemony and the creation of classless societies. Teachers who adopt its pernicious ideas risk harming their students—and ironically, their most disadvantaged students will suffer the most.

Also ironic?  Sol Stern himself, who with E.D. Hirsh was a strong advocate for returning to the teaching of traditional texts in classrooms, has come out as a staunch defender of Common Core, which he claims will achieve that goal.  Stern is technically right that Common Core standards were first conceived as a way to introduce more traditional content in classrooms that had long ago ceased to teach anything resembling traditional content.  But it is a measure of the damage that has been done to schools of education that Stern’s good intentions gave rise to the Common Core boondoggle we’re dealing with today.  It is also a shame that Stern himself is not able to see this — likely because he was given some latitude under Bloomberg to shape the development of Common Core standards for New York City, so he could develop materials that remain somewhat true to his original vision.

In the rest of the nation, we are not so lucky.  The lesson for the rest of us is that any reform filtered through the highly radical waters of the teaching schools will emerge highly radicalized.  And any reform that concentrates power in the hands of the Department of Education and the teacher-training establishment will only amp up the influence of their Frierian-Marxist, anti-western claptrap.  Common Core is nothing new under the sun: it is merely a non-optional centralized delivery system for all the bad ideas that were planted before it.

The anti-Common Core activists are coming to this fight in the 11th hour.  There is a great deal we must learn about the depth of the crisis in education schools and the maze-like education bureaucracy.

The only solution to the crisis in teaching schools is to create alternative institutions.  Conservative colleges like Hillsdale and Patrick Henry need to start franchising schools of education.  The only solution for the crisis in K – 12 education is to fight against Common Core, defeat it, then keep fighting.  We need to create permanent partnerships to start taking back K – 12 education, piece by piece.  No matter what you think of Sol Stern’s current stance on the Common Core, read his article about Paolo Friere and the education establishment: these are the stakes of the long-term battle to come.

An Academic Friend, See Thru Edu, and a Great Book on Great Books and the Common Core

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The subtitle for this blog is:   Academia.  Crime.  Politics.

It has been pointed out to me on several occasions that the slogan is redundant.  I agree.

But there are still a few people in academia who stand up to the gaseous tyrants who make up ever-larger portions of the tenured class.  Bob Paquette of Hamilton College is one of them.  Dr. Paquette is a much-respected historian of slavery, with decades of accolades for his work.  But when he spoke out in defense of teaching Western Civilization and against the unhinged radicalization of academic programs at his college, he found himself on the receiving end of the usual, intellectually incoherent backlash.

How unhinged and intellectually incoherent?  The details are the stuff of vaudevillian humor:

So a Weather Underground terrorist, Ward Churchill, and a Raelian sex cult cloning scientist walk into a faculty lounge in upstate New York . . .

Read the rest here.

Paquette blogs at the website See Thru Edu, which is an essential resource on higher education for conservatives.  He takes the Tea Party movement seriously (like few in academia).  I want to point readers to two recent blog posts he wrote, one about the treatment of Sarah Palin, and this essay, which I encourage you to read and share with anyone who has or will have children attending college:

How Our Universities Breed Intolerance

[T]he Tea Party … have elicited a torrent of denunciation on elite college campuses and have spurred restless nights for the barons of both the Republican and Democratic parties. [They] have an independent, populist, and anti-elitist bent.  No matter who is manning the presidential helm, they have concluded, the country they love remains tossing and turning in waters ever more dangerous to them and to their traditional values, which they once thought were mainstream.  They see themselves being squeezed in a vise in which the turning device, attached to the upper clamp, manufactures the energy for the lower clamp to screw from below. In their search for a moral social order, they feel increasingly betrayed by many of the country’s most important institutions:  government, churches, unions, and schools.

… [Tea Partiers] represent legions far more diverse than your typical university faculty. They wear blue collars as well as white collars, populate northern and southern climes, and collectively groan under growing burdens of taxes and statist regulation.

The essay offers advice to parents of college-bound students, with more to come in future work:

Take this advice.  The brand of elite colleges is overrated and has more to do with the screening process of able admissions officers than the value-added during four years of matriculation.  Many of the chaired professors at elite universities have little intensive contact with undergraduates. Few bear the onerous tasks of intensively grading exams and papers. Outstanding teachers exist at every major institution of higher education in the country.  The trick is locating them. For that you need an insider. A professor whom you can trust to direct your son or daughter to the best, that is the most knowledgeable, demanding, and nurturing professors in their fields, those willing to spend time with serious students, is worth his weight in Ivy-League tuition dollars.

With its focus on higher education, See Thru Edu does not often discuss Common Core.  But Mary Grabar of Dissident Prof has posted there, and she recently introduced me an amazing new book: Terrence Moore’s The Story-Killers.  I’m only one chapter into it, but I can’t recommend it highly enough, as both a great read about the importance of literature instruction and a devastating, substantive critique of contemporary education reforms.

Moore is a teacher (and former Marine) — if you’re going to read one book about Common Core, this is it.

And if you’re in Atlanta area, Terrence Moore is coming to Gainesville on January 13 to speak with Jane Robbins of the American Principles Project and State Senator William Ligon in an event sponsored by the Georgia Concerned Women for America.

The fight has only just begun.