The Inherent Violence Of The Left

It’s no surprise that when you have an ideology that denies human nature, it can only be imposed by threats and force:

…(barely) deniable violence for purposes of intimidation is all part of the scheme. That’s what “no justice, no peace” means. As Richard Fernandez has written: “It is impossible to understand the politics of the Left without grasping that it is all about deniable intimidation.” That’s why they don’t want you to own guns, and that’s why they’re so panicked at groups, like the Tea Party, that aren’t intimidated.

Yup.

“Icky” Conservative Groups

were targeted by the IRS.

But remember, it’s a “phony” scandal.

[Update a while later]

More from the Tax Prof:

Here are six major takeaways from the report:

  1. The IRS admitted that the front office was “spinning” about the targeting rumors as early as 2012, after IRS commissioner Douglas Shulman denied the tea party targeting to Congress. …

  2. Then-IRS commissioner Steven T. Miller almost broke down and told the truth about the tea party targeting at a July 2012 hearing, but Lerner’s sidekick Nikole Flax told him not to. …
  3. The IRS definitely treated tea party applications by a different standard than applications from other (c)(4) groups. …
  4. Lois Lerner expressed her frustration about having to potentially approve a lot of groups, and her colleagues in the agency assured her that she wouldn’t have to. …
  5. So the IRS reached out to outside advisers to help come up with ways to deny tax-exempt status to “icky” organizations. …
  6. A May 2011 email from a lawyer in the IRS chief counsel’s office made clear that the agency sought to use a new “gift tax” to target donors to nonprofit political groups.

Move along, nothing to see here.

[Afternoon update]

The IRS was “fundamentally transformed” and “totally politicized” by ObamaCare and IRS targeting of Tea Party:

The transformation has produced “an IRS responsive to the partisan policy objectives of the White House and an IRS leadership that coordinates with political appointees of the Obama Administration.”

The inability of tax agency officials “to keep politics out of objective decisions about interpretation of the tax code damaged its primary function: an apolitical tax collector that Americans can trust to treat them fairly.”

“Not only did IRS employees allow politics to seep into their work from February 2010 to May 2012, but even after agency officials learned of misconduct, the response from senior agency officials was to manage the fallout rather than quickly expose and correct the misconduct,” the House investigators said.

And it continues to this day.

Two Tyrannies In One Day

The US caves:

Obama announced on Wednesday that Washington and the Castro regime would resume diplomatic relations after a 53-year estrangement. This platinum-medal prize for totalitarian legend Fidel Castro, 88, and his brother Raul, a sprightly man of 83, came at a cost to them of . . . nothing!

Normalization might have made sense in exchange for the Castros’ liberating all political prisoners from their dungeons. (In 2008, Obama promised that normal relations only would happen after the Castros’ political jails were emptied.) A strict timetable for free elections might have merited Obama’s move. So might have Cuba’s adoption of freedoms of movement, speech, press, property, and religion — for starters. The Castros still offer their people none of the above. Fidel and Raul get to eat their dictatorial cake and have it, too, with diplomatic-relations frosting on top. Free of charge.

Obama’s Christmas present to these aging autocracts lacks the geopolitical genius and strategic benefits of President Nixon’s February 1972 overture to China. Instead, it’s just one young strongman handing the ultimate bucket-list item to two ancient strongmen. The only strings attached to Obama’s gift are the ribbons around the wrapping paper.

America’s surrender to North Korea and its hackers is even more bothersome.

Not sure it’s more bothersome, but it is depressing.

Exodus

stage left:

Raise your hand if you want to see Moses portrayed as an insurgent lunatic terrorist with a bad conscience, the pharaoh who sought the murder of all first-born Hebrew slaves as a nice and reasonable fellow, and God as a foul-tempered 11-year-old boy with an English accent.

All right, I see a few hands raised, though maybe they belong to people who are still demonstrating about Ferguson. So let me ask you this: How many of you want to see how Hollywood has taken the story of the Hebrew departure from ancient Egypt — by far the most dramatic tale in the world’s most enduring book — and turned it into a joyless, dull, turgid bore?

I don’t know when I’ve seen a movie as self-destructively misconceived as Exodus: Gods and Kings, the director Ridley Scott’s $200-million retelling of the Moses story that has as much chance of making $200 million at the American box office as Ted Cruz has of winning the District of Columbia in the November 2016 election.

No one has explained to me why it was necessary to redo The Ten Commandments. I guess maybe it brings it to a new audience, with better effects, but why so totally screw with the Biblical story line?

This doesn’t inspire confidence for Scott’s upcoming treatment of The Martian.

[Update a few minutes later]

Also, this:

The problem with genre deconstruction in a biblical film is that Blue State audiences won’t touch religious-oriented films with a barge pole, and Red State audiences know when they’re being gaslighted, and those who see the film during its opening weekend quickly tell their friends to avoid yet another boilerplate Hollywood attack on religion. While some initial leftwing critics screamed that Mel Gibson’s Passion of the Christ was arguably torture porn and/or anti-Semitic, Red State audiences quickly discovered through word of mouth that Mel was perhaps the last filmmaker in Hollywood who took the notion of God and Jesus seriously. (As Hans Fiene of the Federalist quipped last week, if Hollywood wants to get its biblical blockbuster groove back, just “Pretend Mel Gibson is Roman Polanski.”

Heh.

[Update a while later]

It occurs to me that people opposed to this kind of thing don’t have to threaten to bomb theaters. It’s self detonating.

The Left

…is vastly more racist than “the right”:

Since I was publicly identified with the right, roughly from when I started blogging in 2003 (although it was actually several years earlier in private), I have personally witnessed not a single incident of racism from anyone who could be considered a right winger and heard only one racial slur — and that was from a Frenchman. In the seven years I was CEO of PJ Media, I came to know or meet literally dozens of people who identified with the Tea Party. I did not hear one word of anything close to racism from any of them even once. Not one, ever. This despite their being accused of racism constantly.

…we live in [a] culture where there is considerably more black racism than white racism. Someone like Al Sharpton, clearly the equivalent of David Duke, is far more powerful than Duke ever was. No one pays attention to the execrable Duke, as they shouldn’t. But they shouldn’t pay attention to Sharpton either.

But he’s only a part of the problem. There’s also the mayor of the city of New York, Bill de Blasio, the prototype of the leftwing fellow-traveler racist who assumes someone is more moral or better because he or she is “of color.” Of course this is condescending — and therefore racist — to the people he thinks are so pure. No one is. The whole theory of “white skin privilege” is racist and totalitarian to the core: actually it was invented by totalitarians. And while I’m ranting here, all racial identity organizations like the Congressional Black Caucus are inherently racist and dangerous, just as the White Citizens’ Council was and would be.

That’s been obvious to me for decades. All their accusations of racism are just one more aspect of their psychological projection. And so overplayed has the race card become, by race baiters like Sharpton (and Holder, and Obama), that I now take being called a racist by them as a badge of pride.

[Update a while later]

This
seems related:

Now and then, I think back to why I rejected the Left, many years ago — when I was in college. One of the reasons was, they always kept the racial pot boiling. They would never let the pot cool off. It seemed to me they did not want racial harmony. They preferred strife, regarding it as more “authentic” or something. Harmony was for Toms.

Yup.

Religion Of Peace Update

I know it’s become a sad joke, but when I heard last night about the execution of the two cops in New York, I thought “When will we find out that the perp was a Muslim”? With the last name “Brinsley,” I figured that we’d finally found a random murderous criminal act that wasn’t Jihad related — it was just from rage whipped up by the hateful race baiters like Sharpton (and de Blasio).

Well, it turns out that my relief came too soon:

In my previous posts on assassin Ismaaiyl Brinsley, who murdered two New York Police Department officers on Saturday, I noted that he had posted on Facebook a page of the Quran with a notorious verse calling on Muslims to “strike terror into the [hearts of] the enemies of Allah,” and another post about a fight he recently engaged in with an Atlanta panhandler when he discovered the panhandler was a “Muslim too.”

But an Instagram message posted by Brinsley during Ramadan five months ago may indicate that he visited one of America’s most terror-tied mosques.

Sigh.

Chanukah

A dangerous holiday:

For those liberals who believe that Jewish identity should be limited to donating to help Haiti, agitating for illegal aliens and promoting the environment; Chanukah is a threatening holiday. They have secularized it, dressed it up with teddy bears and toys, trimmed it with the ecology and civil rights of their new faith. Occasionally a Jewish liberal learns the history of it and writes an outraged essay about nationalism and militarism, but mostly they are content to bury it in the same dark cellar that they store the rest of the history of their people and the culture that they left behind.

Holidays aren’t mere parties, they are messages. Knots of time that we tie around the fingers of our lives so that we remember what our ancestors meant us to never forget. That they lived and died for a reason. The party is a celebration, but if we forget what it celebrates, then it becomes a celebration of celebration. A hollow and soulless festival of the self. The Maccabees fought because they believed they had something worth fighting for. Not for their possessions, but for their traditions, their families and their G-d. The celebration of Chanukah is not just how we remember them, but how we remember that we are called upon to keep their watch. To take up their banner and carry their sword.

History is a wheel and as it turns, we see the old continents of time rising again, events revisiting themselves as the patterns of the past become new again. Ancient battles become new wars. And old struggles have to be re-fought again until we finally get them right.

Those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it.

The Wright Anniversary

It’s been 111 years. On the centennial, eleven years ago, I wrote three pieces. One at Fox News, one at TechCentralStation (which later became TCSDaily), and one at National Review on line. Unfortunately, the latter seems to have suffered from link rot. I’m trying to find out if it still exists on their server.

[Evening update]

National Review has resurrected my other piece.

Jerry Pournelle

He apparently suffered a minor stroke. From his son, Alex:

Jerry had a small stroke. He is recovering well at a local hospital. Prognosis is good, though they’re running more tests and he’s expected to stay at least another day or two.

“He felt well enough to call Mom [Mrs. Pournelle] from the hospital.

“Thank you for your thoughts and prayers. More updates when we have them.

I saw him a few weeks ago, and he seemed to be doing as well as a man his age who has recovered from a brain tumor could be expected to. Best wishes for a rapid recovery.

Friday’s Barge Landing

Here‘s the SpaceX press release. Note that no government agency is funding them to do this. It’s actual internal R&D, a rarity in this industry, at least up until now. Also, if NASA was doing this, they’d spend billions up front on analysis. In contrast, SpaceX is flying, and failing, and improving, and flying again, and failing and improving. They may not land on Friday, but they’ll be a lot closer to being able to do it.

[Update a while later]

Why the CRS-5 mission could change everything.

Bush Versus Clinton

If that’s really the 2016 line up. I want them both to lose, badly. Get rid of this dynastical nonsense. It’s un-American. If some have a social need for royalty, let’s stick to Hollywood celebrities, not people who run the country. I agree with Glenn on this:

My concern is that the GOP’s donor class can only get interested in candidates that the GOP’s base finds unappealing, and vice versa.

It’s a big problem.

Our Dependence On Russian Engines

continues:

“Certainly the NDAA places future restrictions on the use of the Russian engines for national security space applications. Our application is in civil space. There’s a long history of U.S.-Russian cooperation in civil space, dating back to Apollo-Soyuz in the 1970s at the height of the Cold War. Since our immediate objective is in civil space supporting the International Space Station, it’s got a slightly different twist or perspective than supporting national security space. NASA already relies on cooperation with its Russian partner in other ways to execute the ISS program [including] crew transport. Certainly it would not make sense to restrict the use of engines manufactured in Russia on a program that’s already inherently dependent on cooperation between the United States and Russia.”

In other words, civil space isn’t important. We cooperated with the Soviets during the Cold War, but we were never dependent on them. I assume this means more INKSNA waivers.

PC Question

No, not political correctness — personal computer. I’m doing a mobo/processor upgrade. I notice that almost all the AMD processors have Radeon graphics built in. I assume that in order to take advantage of this, I have to have a mobo with video support? I’ve been operating off an old PCI express card for years, and have no problems with it, but if I can get significant performance improvement from the new built-in GPU, it might be worth spending a little more for a video mobo. I don’t do any heavy graphics, but maybe it would be nice to go to full HD and fast processing.

[Update a few minutes later]

OK, all the boards have video outputs, so when it says it has no on-board video support, that just means that it has no dedicated graphics chips, and relies on the processor, right? So the GPU built in to the CPU would work, and be better than my old PCI express? Or is the separate card better because it has its own memory?

Hope And Change

An epitaph:

Such a climate should not have been unexpected, given that the Obamas entered the national scene with rhetoric and associations like “downright mean country,” “raise the bar,” “for the first time [i.e., when Obama was elected] . . . I’m really proud of my country,” Jeremiah Wright, “typical white person,” and the clingers speech. The natural result of all that was soon to be the stupidly acting Cambridge police; Trayvon Martin, the boy who looked like the son Obama never had; and slamming Ferguson at the U.N. — while black unemployment, graduation, illegitimacy, and crime rates were either unaffected by Obama’s presidency or grew worse despite his often racialized rhetoric. We now witness an entire grievance movement highlighted by a slogan — Hands up, don’t shoot — that is most certainly untrue.

The above symptomology is not a partisan tirade, given that the Americans who voted Obama into office twice, and ensured a Democratic Congress from 2006 to 2010, have now come to the same conclusion. The president’s approval ratings hover at 40 percent. Almost single-handedly, Obama has done to the Democratic party far more damage than Herbert Hoover did to the Republican brand. Not in 70 years have Democratic numbers in the Congress been so bleak. State legislatures and governorships are more Republican than at any time in a generation.

“Hope and change” was always an idiotic basis on which to vote for someone. He managed to get elected, twice, only by appealing to low-info types. But even they seem, finally, to be wising up.

Obama’s Executive Amnesty

Is he trying to lose the lawsuit over it?

Whenever I seek an explanation for Barack Obama’s behavior, Occam’s Razor would indicate incompetence and (as Mickey says) hubris, rather than clever Machiavellian intrigues.

[Late-morning update]

“Obama really needs to listen to others, because he really doesn’t understand politics.”

The things that Obama doesn’t understand would fill a large library.

[Update just before noon]

A court has found Obama’s amnesty order unconstitutional. Good.

NASA’s Drift

A $350M monument to it.

I talked to Farenthold about this a few months ago, but I actually see SLS/Orion as a bigger and more dangerous waste of funds, because unlike a test stand that will almost certainly never be used, they have the vague appearance of utility to those who don’t understand the program, and will be harder to kill.