Pick of the Day from American Greatness –  Apocalypse Ciao – Italy’s Trump Election by Angelo Codevilla

As all of my long term readers know Angelo Codevilla is one of my favorite conservative scholars.  I enjoyed this recent post on Italy’s election.  And I had to chuckle when I read this description of the Five Star Movement’s “slogan”:

“The big winner of the night, however, was the “Five Star” movement. This most obviously Trumpian outfit, which expresses the voters’ anger at the establishment, won 33 percent. Its slogan, “Vaffanculo!” none too subtly invites establishmentarians to attempt monogenesis.”

Now as any Brooklyn Italian kid knew back in my day that word would get you slapped in the face and sent to the Church Confessional if your mother heard you say it.  But it is exactly the correct sentiment for the globalist dictators destroying Italy and every other country in the First World.  It’s a quick read and will bring you up to date with yet another populist echo of the Trump heard round the world.


The Allegory of the Sinking Ship

I had a good friend who died a few years ago.  He was about ten years older than I was and had served in the Green Berets during Vietnam, was a chemist, became an engineer as a second career, raised a family, was a musician and late in life took up sailing.  He was also universally acclaimed an honest, hard-working, friendly and just Christian man.  He kept me around, I think, as a mascot and probably, by comparison, as a cautionary tale for the young.  One day after he retired he called me up and asked me if I wanting to go sailing with him on Narragansett Bay.  He was in remission from cancer and I hadn’t seen him in a while so I said sure.  After all I was in relatively good health and younger than him so I figured I’d go along and enjoy a peaceful and restful morning sail.  Well, by the time we came back I was sun-burned, wind-burned, and aching in bones and muscles I had never known I had.  Suffice it to say my knowledge of boats can be written in billboard sized letters on the narrower face of a grain of rice.  I did learn that starboard probably means right.  So, there’s that.

Now this is what we call foundation material for a call back later.  So, hold on to the nautical theme.

There exists a range of opinions of how things will unfold in the future.  The Alt-Right has claimed that the hypocrisy about race that prevails today precludes the possibility of honest relations in a multicultural society.  But they go well beyond that idea.  Their claim is that different ethnic and racial groups cannot coexist in harmony.  They contend that the open immigration of the last fifty years has drowned out the former nation that existed in America before and that the new population shall produce a third world society closer to Brazil or South Africa than to the former United States with respect to culture, stability, prosperity and quality of life.  Their draconian solution is partition of the country.  The Establishment Republicans on the other hand, contend that all that’s needed to restore America is a good illegal alien amnesty bill and some inspired After School Specials.

Over the course of the last few years I have concluded that the Establishment Republicans are worse than useless.  They have ignored or abetted in the steadily increasing damage done to the native population by off-shoring of whole industries along with wholesale destruction of jobs through competition from illegal aliens.  In addition, they ignore the ceaseless and ever worsening assaults on the foundational institutions of a healthy society by the Leftists.  In fact, they continuously adopt the latest assault as if it were a cornerstone of traditional society.  You only have to watch the NeverTrumpers embrace gay marriage or transgender identity rights to see how far they’ve travelled down the road to nihilism.

At the same time, although I readily concede that the Alt-Right was correct about many critical issues,  I don’t concede that it is impossible for significantly different groups of people to coexist in a society that follows the founding precepts of the United States of America.  While I grant that it will differ from the nation existing at the Founding and even the country that existed fifty years ago I have not surrendered all hope that it could maintain the traditions and institutions that have existed here.  And as a practical matter I even think I can outline a program that will answer the most pressing issues afflicting the American people while allowing a fair test as to whether something short of apartheid will preserve the character of the country as it was two generation ago.  This is my olive branch, such as it is, to the Alt-Right.  Having been right about so many things that everyone else got wrong, I feel they deserve it.  Here is my modest proposal.

And so, I unveil the Allegory of the Sinking Ship.  Plato eat your heart out.  See how I came back to the sailing theme?

Let’s compare our present situation to an ocean-going ship striking a reef.  What are the steps needed to save the ship?  Let’s enumerate them.

Step One – Plug the hole.

Step Two – Pump out the water.

Step Three – Repair the damage.

Step Four – Review cause of crash and take measures to prevent recurrence.

Now let’s identify the analogous steps to save our “Ship of State.”

  • Plug the Hole. – In our case that would be shutting down replacement immigration. And that means reducing legal immigration to just about zero.
  • Pump Out the Water. – That equates to deporting the illegal immigrants that are here or that continue to “leak through.” This also includes legal immigrants and naturalized Americans who break immigration law or otherwise show themselves to be criminals.
  • Repair the Damage. – In our situation this means restoring the life of the country to what it was like fifty years ago.
  • Prevent Recurrence. – In our case that means figuring out how we got into this mess and changing the Constitution to prevent a repeat of this existential threat.

The first two steps are self-explanatory and for the most part only require normal executive and legislative actions to proceed.  President Trump has taken the first baby steps toward these actions.  Much more is needed but part of that process is his moving of the Overton Window on what can and what needs to be done on illegal immigration.  Hopefully some gains in the midterms and possible improvement of the conservative leaning of the Supreme Court will accelerate the actions being taken by the President and Congress.

The third step is an enormous task.  So much needs to be repaired that it’s hard to believe it wouldn’t be easier to start from scratch.  But I’ll throw some things out here for consideration.  One of the requirements is the re-establishment of the freedom of association.  Basically, the government has to get out of the business of telling people who they associate with.  And that means eliminating affirmative action and all of the protected groups that have been created.  This is an enormous change.  And basically, it will decriminalize being a straight white man.  It is the cornerstone of getting back to a functional America.  Another requirement is reducing the overreach of the federal government and stifle its impulse to redistribute wealth.  And finally, we must restore Constitutional authority.  This means the Supreme Court is going to have to strike down all the unconstitutional over-reach that has occurred in the last fifty years (and in some cases more).  This overlaps the first requirement because a number of the anti-free association rules were court mandated.  But there are many more that impinge on the rights of the various states to follow the will of the people in their states.

The fourth step is completely unknown territory.  How do you protect the United States from nihilists?  Perhaps a number of Constitutional Amendments can be put in place to protect us from the Marxist ploys we’ve run up against but it seems that you can’t legislate common sense.  This step will require a lot of thought.

So that’s the outline.  And throwing in one last analogy to the sinking ship is my point about it being a way to test the possibility of restoring the country.  If at any point along these steps the ship starts to sink you can always resort to life boats and escape.  In our situation that equates to the situation where we fail to stop illegal immigration and the Democrats achieve a permanent majority and immediately institute the full Marxist program including functional elimination of the First and Second Amendments.  At that point it will be obvious that I was wrong and the Alt-Right civil war can commence.  See, no fuss no muss.  My plan is just an interim step if you’re convinced of Armageddon.

The way I see it, following a plan like mine is no worse than waiting for the apocalypse and depending on outcome could be a whole lot better.  Now as I alluded to earlier, my maritime knowledge is less than comprehensive but anyone who has dealt with a busted pipe knows that the first order of business is shutting off the supply.  After that comes the cleanup.  But we need to start at the beginning.


Finding an Actual Conservative Talk Show on PBS? As Likely As Getting Sense Out of Nancy Pelosi

I saw this “news item” on Drudge “PBS-launching-new-conservative-political-talk-show” so I clicked on it. I should have known better.  They claim this new show called “In Principle” will take its cue from Buckley’s “Firing Line.”  I think it’s more likely to be a PBS version of Morning Joe.  Michael Gerson is a house conservative over at the Washington Post and a NeverTrumper.  His co-host Amy Holmes has spent some time at MSNBC so I’m sure she will be a tower of conservative rigor.  This should be good for me.  I’m tired of making fun of Morning Shmoe and Lycra Spandexy.  This will be fresh meat for the lions.

Here’s the link but I already took the bullet for you so feel free to leave the Seattle Times alone.



Letting President Trump Do His Job

Some of my friends are panicking about Trump and the bump stock executive order. They feel betrayed and think the “end in near.”  I told them to calm down, take a deep breath and look away from the news for a couple of days.  Here is my logic.  School shootings panic women.  Women turn on a dime against gun rights.  The midterms are coming around.  So that accounts for President Trump demonizing bump stocks.  He needs something to say he’s “doing something.”  He’s placating the idiots.  Do I like this? No.  Am I wringing my hands and banging my head against the wall and denouncing the President?  No.  I trust that he will cut the best deal we can get.  He’s the right man for the job.  I wouldn’t want any of the usual suspects getting involved (McCain, Rubio, Romney).  I don’t even prefer that a Second Amendment hard-liner take the lead.  Trump’s the man for the job.  Hopefully he can get the damage control done as quickly as possible and move onto his agenda.


After a year in office my motto is “Let Trump be Trump.” He’s got better skills and instincts than anyone else.  How would we do better than to let him do his thing.  I feel my best action is to spread the gospel.  I try to calm the nervous.  And believe me I understand.  We’ve been betrayed by the weak and the wobbly and the wolf in sheep’s clothing.  It takes courage to trust.  But I think I’ve seen enough from this man to give him some space.  As Ann Coulter said “In Trump We Trust.”  It’s remarkable to see how few of our politicians know anything about human nature.  Politics in a democracy is a combination of salesmanship and coalition building.  Sounds like the place for a deal maker.


Passing the Torch

The other day I was talking to a young guy at work. Now, by young I’m talking relatively.  Looking at him and basing my opinion on appearance, work experience, the fact that he has a wife and a child, I’d say he’s somewhere between 27 and 32 years old.  Well, we were discussing stuff and Fred Flintstone came up.  We were talking about car tires and how Fred could chisel out a spare when he got a flat.  There were some general comments on the unenlightened character of Fred and I said that Fred was a cartoon copy of the Jackie Gleason character Ralph Kramden and how Ralph was a comical but fair representation of the working class guy of the nineteen fifties.  This elicited blank unrecognition of Jackie Gleason, Ralph Kramden and the Honeymooners in general.  I guess this surprised me.  After all older shows that I watched on TV as a kid were still well known to younger people.  For instance, The Three Stooges were from the 1930s and 1940s and yet they are a fixture on television and are still relatively well-known.  I guessed that the Honeymooners must have disappeared from television far enough back to completely disappear from the present adult population’s collective TV consciousness.  That bothered me.

Why do I think that the Honeymooners shouldn’t disappear? First of all I don’t pretend that the Kramden household represents some golden age portrayal of American marital bliss.  Ralph is portrayed as pretty dimwitted and Alice is given a certain amount of the female empowerment motive that has reached its disgusting fruition in our present feminized society.  She often wins the argument by proving to Ralph just how superior she is and how unfair her role as homemaker is.  Deference to her moral superiority is on display most of the time.  But the basis of the show is the underlying rock-bottom premise that a man should be the king of his castle.  Even in the derisive arguments that Alice gives Ralph at every turn is the bottom line of “so if you’re the boss, what do we do now?”  No matter what dumb thing Kramden does, he is the master of his soul.  He will have to find a way to prevail.  And like it or not, Alice will have to back his play.  And good, bad or indifferent she would rather go along with him than go it alone.  He may be the lowest rung on the totem pole but he is still the alpha male.  And in a few episodes he does get to prove himself the king.  The one that stands out is of course one of the least plausible.  Ralph has obtained a bag full of counterfeit money.  When the gangsters catch up with him they threaten Alice and the neighbors and when Ralph defies them they take him in the back room at gunpoint to work him over and make him comply on giving them the money.  And in this crisis Ralph prevails.  He beats up the thug and rescues his wife and neighbors.  Of course, in the next minute he tries to cash in on his achievement and makes himself ridiculous, but his victory stands as proof that he is the man of the house.  And for once even Alice can’t diminish his victory.

And the other aspect that endears the show to me is the working class ethos. For the most part, American TV exists to reflect the world-view and the sensibilities of the upper middle class.  Even when they are portrayed as struggling twenty-somethings you can see that missing a meal or not having the status symbol item is not part of their existence.  They are the cloud people.  By contrast, the Kramdens and the Nortons (their upstairs friends and neighbors) don’t have two nickels to rub together.  Even buying a new bowling ball can be outside the realm of possibility.  These are people who aspire to be lower middle class.  Ralph dreams up countless get rich quick schemes to allow him to make Alice proud of him.  And he always fails but he never gives up.  That is the kind of message that the young people need to get.  Not that everything will be handed to them on a silver platter.  And not that they can’t decide what is good enough for them.  For that is the message that is out there now.  The government will provide what you need and also decide what you don’t need (or deserve).

So I’m going to do my best to spread the word to the kids about Ralph Kramden and the Honeymooners. I think the show is an antidote for the namby pamby male sterotypes currently infesting television and the movies.  He may be a colossal failure but he certainly is king of his castle.  And that’s a good thing to be.



What Is a Sub-Species?  Whatever We Tell You It Is! – Fake Science

Years ago, I used to frequent a website that catered to field-herpers.  Field-herpers aren’t people suffering from herpes caught while engaging in questionable sexual behavior in the outdoors.  These are people who search for reptiles and amphibians in their natural habitats.  And among the denizens of this site were a certain number of herpetologists.  These are biologists who study reptiles and amphibians.  And most of these scientists are just regular folks doing their jobs for either a college or for the state or federal government.  They do population studies and other more esoteric scientific analyses.

But a very small percentage of these were individuals who each made it his life’s work to make sure that nobody but a “scientist” kept reptiles and amphibians on his own.  In some areas of the country this is essentially a fait accompli.  In a place like Massachusetts, almost any reptile or amphibian less common than a bullfrog is already listed as an endangered or threatened species.  Even the rattlesnakes are protected.  And as for turtles, you can probably keep a painted turtle or a snapper but everything else is sacrosanct.  Even the turtles that they admit aren’t endangered or even uncommon are treated as contraband such that if you were caught in possession of one you’d get more prison time than if you were discovered hauling a tractor trailer full of cocaine into the state.

Now in less densely populated states like Kansas and Missouri it was pretty common for a farm boy who had an interest in nature to catch a rat snake or a bull snake around the hen house and build a cage for it and figure out how to feed it and keep it alive.  Many famous early 20th Century herpetologists got started in just that way.  A Snake is a very interesting and unusual creature.  Other than horrifying his female relatives it is a harmless endeavor for a pre-teen boy from which some knowledge of the outdoors can be easily gleaned including the usefulness of snakes as a rodent exterminating agent.  And since snakes do not require companionship or affection it is relatively guilt-free for the keeper.

In these farming states it was difficult for the zoological SJWs to claim endangered status for these rodent eating snakes.  After all corn fields breed rats and mice at a prodigious rate.  And that ensures a plentiful supply of snakes.  But the SJWs are a persistent bunch and with enough time and warped thinking they can always make up something.  And what they’ve come up with is the “convenient sub-species.”  Let’s say you have a species with an enormous range and the ability to inhabit a wide range of habitats.  As an example, take the common garter snake (Thamnophis sirtalis).  This animal extends the length and breadth of the continental United States and even occupies large parts of Canada and even the southeast tip of Alaska.  It’s ridiculously common.  And because it thrives in widely varying habitats it has adapted and has developed different patterns and coloring to blend in better with its environment.  There are striped populations and checked ones.  There are almost totally black populations (melanistic) and there is a whole suite of color groupings.  On the west coast there are some areas that have populations that tend to red and orange.  And even in the same geographic location you can find differences in appearance that show how camouflage has been successful in selecting a phenotype for survival.  Okay, so far so good.  The common garter snake is a prodigy of ecological success.  What a shame for SJWs.  How can you ban a little boy from catching a garter snake and keeping it in a terrarium for a few weeks until he gets tired of feeding it worms and throws it back in the field where he found it?  After all it’s ubiquitous.  A thousand get diced in the blades of suburban lawnmowers every Saturday in August around every good-sized town in America.  What harm is there in a little boy keeping one.  Well the harm is he’s having fun and he’s not doing it in a classroom, sanctioned and facilitated by the state.  He’s doing it himself!

But how to stop him?  Well, the common garter snake is a tough nut to crack but give the SJW credit.  He’ll find a way.  And the answer is the convenient sub-species.  So back to the SCIENCE!  Thamnophis sirtalis is one species.  If you look at one population in Massachusetts and then looked at another one a hundred miles to the west you might find very small color differences and yet if you let them mate, which they would, the offspring would be almost indistinguishable from both parents.  And you could do the same every hundred miles west all across the continental United States until you reached Oregon or Washington and each time you’d find the same thing, very tiny gradations in color and pattern.  By then the populations would be significantly different from the Massachusetts tribe but they’d still be the same species and in fact they could breed with their Bay State cousins and produce common garter snakes.  But what if we decided that there was such a thing as sub-species?  Let’s say that we look at the garter snakes on the West Coast and compare them directly to the garter snakes on the East Coast.  They are fairly distinct.  Without looking at the progression of gradations from one coast to the other you might even be able to convince yourself that they are different species.  So sub-species is something that rather arbitrarily can be designated along the range of a species that spans large geographic areas.  Well, even if it is arbitrary, there are noticeable differences in form (morphology) to base such a classification on and since biologists have a lot of time on their hands in the winter they go to their collection of bottled alcohol-preserved snakes and draw lines on the range map showing where sub-species X ends and where sub-species Y begins.  Once again, fine.  Anything that keeps biologists off of fieldherper websites is a good thing.  And the SJW scores a great victory here.  In the whole universe of garter snake habitats, it would have to be San Francisco that combines an attractive and distinctive local subspecies with a shrinking range due to local land usage that almost (well not quite almost) justifies providing a protected status to the population.  But, of course, the draconian measures employed undermines the legitimacy of the case for protecting the population.  Captive bred populations of the San Francisco garters exist in Europe and many other places but ownership in the US is prohibited and extreme measures are taken to prevent these foreign blood lines from being brought into the country.  Scientific studies of the genetics of the SF garters and other red colored garters from the west coast show no differences in genetic makeup.  In other words, the SF garter snake is no more than a local population that differs in genetics no more than those garter snakes that lived a hundred miles from the ones we talked about earlier.  The biggest difference is that the academics in San Francisco made a stink about their local snake and dragged the Feds in to make it a federal case.

And so, the example has been set.  Find a distinctive population of a common species and declare it endangered.  But this was just the beginning.  Suppose you have a common species whose range only barely extends into a particular state.  Where a change of topography limits the range of a species to a small area that overlaps with the jurisdiction of a state government it is possible to have a situation where the species is extremely common on both sides of a state border but only inhabits a tiny area within that state.  Because of the limited area of the snake in this state, the local scientists will decide that it’s threatened.  Does this make any sense?  None.  But that’s now standard operating procedure.  And step by step you build up a patchwork of restrictions on common species and laws to punish anyone who is interested in keeping them.

And finally, we come to the last stage of the convenient sub-species.  Population biologists start performing morphological studies on the prevalence of small differences in appearance between small populations of a common species.  As an example, imagine that a certain snake has a range of scale counts on its chin.  Let’s say the count can vary from a minimum of eight scales to a maximum of twelve scales.  And suppose on Hill A the population has 66% eight scale average and 33% 12 scale average.  Meanwhile on Hill B about half a mile away the proportions are reversed (33% lower, 66% higher).  The field biologist will declare these two populations sub-species and because of their limited ranges they are endangered sub-species.  Think about that.

So, this is the strategy.  Break everything into smaller and smaller populations, declare these smaller groupings distinct and then use the small size to declare them endangered.  Pretty brilliant.  And we pay the salary of these government and academic scientists who do this to us.  And the same system is used for plants, insects, birds, snails, fish and everything else that gives bureaucrats power over businesses and ordinary people who come in contact with the natural world.

It’s a racket and it works.  And the way it effects hobbyists who keep pets is just the tip of the iceberg.  Every time a small population of a common species is identified as an endangered species it can be used to prevent a dam from being built or someone from using his own property as he likes.  It’s about power and demoralizing a free people.

So to answer my original question, a sub-species is whatever government and academic scientists need it to be in order to assert power over the actions of the citizens of this country.  There’s no objective standard.  Just whatever it takes to assert the government’s power over its citizens.  Fake science.

The GOPe’s on the Ropes

Over the course of the post-Reagan republican clown parade we have seen many sorry excuses for conservatives.  And from where I was watching the Bushes were not even the worst of them.  Now, don’t get me wrong.  I think that George Herbert Walker Bush was the political equivalent of the Civil War’s General Burnside.  Burnside was a general so disastrously incompetent that during the closing days of the Civil War upon hearing of his latest battlefield disaster Lincoln was alleged to have said that “Only Burnside could have managed such a coup, wringing one last spectacular defeat from the jaws of victory.”  I do not make this comparison idly.  Here is a man who was handed the presidency on a silver platter from Ronald Reagan’s hands and in only four years lost it to a combination of Ross Perot and the trailer trash chasing Governor of Arkansas, Bill Clinton.  Yes, the Bushes have much to be ashamed of as fake conservatives.  And the outpouring of stupidity they have provided during and since the 2016 election only confirms their terrible political skills and lack of the common touch.

Or, I could wax poetic about that “maverick,” that “Reagan foot soldier,” John McCain but his health status makes me squeamish about pummeling him with the truth.  We could talk about !JEB!  We could talk about W.  But without a doubt the worst example of republican empty suit syndrome is Willard Mitt Romney.  The whole country has had a chance to enjoy Mittens during his disastrous attempt at the presidency.  The Press had a field day with the photo of his dog riding in a crate on top of the family SUV and the infamous “binders full of women” shows how unable this man was to confront even the most inept partisan attacks against him.  And his craven supine caving to Democrat and MSM demands that he turn on Trump during the election was pure Romney gold.

But in order to really see Mitt at his best you had to live in Massachusetts during the time when Romney tried challenging Ted Kennedy for his senate seat and then later during Romney’s tenure as Governor of the Bay State.  During his senate campaign he said, “I believe that abortion should be safe and legal in this country.”  Now this is a Mormon making this statement.  The official Mormon stance on abortion says, “Human life is a sacred gift from God. Elective abortion for personal or social convenience is contrary to the will and the commandments of God. Church members who submit to, perform, encourage, pay for, or arrange for such abortions may lose their membership in the Church.”  As a mitigating circumstance you could say that in a liberal state like Massachusetts anyone not claiming a pro-choice position had no chance of gaining elective office.  And the answer to that would be that a Mormon shouldn’t run for elective office in Massachusetts.

But Mitt had any number of pratfalls in Massachusetts.  While Governor his administration was blamed for some tiles falling from the ceiling of the newly built Big Dig tunnel and killing a passing driver.  Now the tunnel was built by the various crooked business interests that flourished under the Democratic Massachusetts House and Senate leaders who doled out the contracts as patronage rewards and squandered the federal funds and the State taxes used.  But Mitt took the blame with never a peep and almost seemed to enjoy the abuse that was heaped on him by the various rats in the legislature and press who better than anyone knew who was really to blame for the shoddy construction and outrageous price tag of the Big Dig.  And this is the real shame of the GOPe.  They never fight.  They just sit there and take it.  And even worse, they attack anyone who dares to fight back.  Instead of applauding Trump for defending himself they go out of their way to virtue signal to the press that they are more outraged than the Democrats at the shameless refusal to kowtow to scurrilous attacks.  “How dare Trump not cower like a true republican!”

But it appears the jig may be up.  In the last few months even the most dependably invertebrate members of the GOPe seem to be figuring out that you actually can beat the MSM game.  After seeing what happens when they work together with President Trump even such weak-kneed arthropods as Lindsey Graham are jumping on the Trump bandwagon and benefitting from the realization that acting like a man is possible for a republican.  Can you imagine what would happen if they survive the midterms without losing either chamber, maybe even making gains?

I’m almost afraid of what this trend could portend.  Will we see the likes of Lindsey Graham parading around the Senate floor sporting gold chains and flashing gang signs and talking trash about D’s who got curb stomped by the Notorious DT?  Man, I hope not.  But if we do, I only hope Romney doesn’t catch it too.  The image of Mitt with a gold grill and twin glocks would probably finish me off, laughing.