Trump: “Take the guns first, go through due process second.”


Please consider donating to Behind the Black, by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, as outlined in the tip jar to the right or below. Your support will allow me to continue covering science and culture as I have for the past twenty years, independent and free from any outside influence.

Link here. Trump, who’s roots remain that of a liberal Democrat, suddenly sees nothing wrong with abandoning the fifth amendment to the Bill of Rights if it will get him brownie points with the leftist mainstream media.

Yet, burning the Constitution to avoid the massacre in Florida was never necessary. All that had to happen was for Florida simply enforce the law properly.

School and law enforcement officials knew Cruz was a ticking time bomb. They did nothing because of a deliberate, willful, bragged-about policy to end the “school-to-prison pipeline.” This is the feature part of the story, not the bug part.

If Cruz had taken out full-page ads in the local newspapers, he could not have demonstrated more clearly that he was a dangerous psychotic. He assaulted students, cursed out teachers, kicked in classroom doors, started fist fights, threw chairs, threatened to kill other students, mutilated small animals, pulled a rifle on his mother, drank gasoline and cut himself, among other “red flags.” Over and over again, students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School reported Cruz’s terrifying behavior to school administrators, including Kelvin Greenleaf, “security specialist,” and Peter Mahmood, head of JROTC. At least three students showed school administrators Cruz’s near-constant messages threatening to kill them — e.g., “I am going to enjoy seeing you down on the grass,” “Im going to watch ypu bleed,” “iam going to shoot you dead” — including one that came with a photo of Cruz’s guns. They warned school authorities that he was bringing weapons to school. They filed written reports.

Threatening to kill someone is a felony. In addition to locking Cruz away for a while, having a felony record would have prevented him from purchasing a gun.

All the school had to do was risk Cruz not going to college, and depriving Yale University of a Latino class member, by reporting a few of his felonies — and there would have been no mass shooting.

But Cruz was never arrested. He wasn’t referred to law enforcement. He wasn’t even expelled. Instead, Cruz was just moved around from school to school — six transfers in three years. But he was always sent back to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in order to mainstream him, so that he could get a good job someday! [emphasis in original]

The root causes for this mess have nothing to do with guns. Instead, the madness of Cruz was aided and abetted by insane liberal polices (created and pushed by the Obama administration) and instituted incompetently by liberal politicians, all of whom are named in the second link.

Right now, however, the liberal press and their Democratic allies are going to make a big push for gun control and burning the Bill of Rights as a major campaign stand for the 2018 elections. I am amazed by this, because I guarantee it will result in exactly the opposite of what they expect.

Share

89 comments

  • Andrew_W

    Threatening to kill someone is a felony. In addition to locking Cruz away for a while, having a felony record would have prevented him from purchasing a gun.

    You’ve missed the important steps of prosecution and conviction.

  • Andrew_W: Your willingness to excuse leftist incompetence here is expected, but amazingly embarrassing, to you. The point of the quote, which you purposely try to distract us from, is that Cruz was never arrested. How do you prosecute if you don’t arrest the person for committing a crime?

  • Andrew_W

    Who did he threaten to kill?

  • Edward

    Read the post, Andrew_W.

    The post noted: “At least three students showed school administrators Cruz’s near-constant messages threatening to kill them” and has Cruz’s quote: “iam going to shoot you dead

    He threatened to kill students at school.

  • Andrew_W

    And were the police informed?

  • Andrew_W

    As far as I can tell the police were not informed of the death threats, the FBI was warned by a female caller that Cruz was unstable and the FBI accepts the concerns expressed in those warnings were not followed up as they should have been. But reading the transcript, it doesn’t look like the caller mentioned anything that would have disqualified Cruz from owning guns, unless you’re a convicted felon or certified as unbalanced it’s legal to own a gun, the Government cannot just take them from you.

  • Cotour

    Using the now supposed logic of the “Rule of the crazy shooter”, then we are just 4 or 5 shootings from eliminating the Second Amendment altogether? The ownership of the AR 15? Semi automatic hand guns?
    Bullets? We can have a 17 year old write the amendment eliminating them all.

    If the FBI and the police, not to mention the Congress and Senate, not having a policy of actually doing something with verifiable intelligence about someone who has the potential for committing a school shooting or who has actually committed offences like, a bombing, or the selling of our country’s natural resources to our enemy’s for a profit and having it called a “donation”, then what is it that they are paid to do? And who are they working for and what is their function?

    I again ask: Are these knowable events through leadership policy allowed to occur and there is no way that preventative actions might be reasonably taken? And if they are allowed, what is the goal of such policy? I think we can see what it might be if we were to allow ourselves to think outside the box a bit. Leadership sets policy related to how things are handled, just like the policy where an armed officer arrives at a violent scene and does nothing to possibly prevent the murder of innocent children. They arrive and they stay put while the carnage proceeds. Wait for SWAT. No one does anything. This is the policy. This is of course back seat driving, but I am just saying.

    And the FBI really has no comment at all that I have ever seen one way or the other, what is just is. The only comment or the comments that issue forth? “We are doing heroic work” says police chief Israel.

    I do not like any of this, including Trumps being politically practical about the slippery slope that is confiscation without reasonable cause (And there was a boat load of reasonable cause, no a Mississippi River barge load in the Cruz case). Make soft targets hard, let it be known that you do not just walk into a “gun free zone” and do you worst without there being severe consequences visited swiftly and with extreme prejudice, soft targets should not exist in the first place.

    No, I do not like this one bit.

  • Andrew_W

    There are nine categories of people prohibited from possessing firearms under the Gun Control Act:

    Persons under indictment for, or convicted of, any felony crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year
    Fugitives from justice
    Persons who are unlawful users of, or addicted to, any controlled substance
    Persons who have been declared by a court as mental defectives or have been committed to a mental institution
    Illegal aliens or aliens who were admitted to the United States under a nonimmigrant visa
    Persons who have been dishonorably discharged from the Armed Forces
    Persons who have renounced their United States citizenship
    Persons subject to certain types of restraining orders
    Persons who have been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence
    In addition, most persons under 18 years of age are prohibited from possessing handguns.

    https://www.thoughtco.com/who-cannot-have-gund-in-america-4051068

    So which of those categories is supposed to have disqualified Cruz from owning a gun?

  • wayne

    Andrew_W:

    I just don’t get what your Global point, actually is.

    Ref: So which of those categories is supposed to have disqualified Cruz from owning a gun?
    –that would have been:
    “Persons who have been declared by a court as mental defectives or have been committed to a mental institution.”
    –IF he had been petitioned for examination; the ticket to ride is “threat to others or self.”
    specifically– the “I am going to shoot you dead” statement is all anyone needed.

    That would have initiated a 72 hour hold & a formal exam. Assuming the Petition was granted by the Judge, (and most are at that point) he would have come under the supervision of the local mental health authority & been forced to undergo treatment & medications as indicated. The District Attorney would generally defer to mental health recommendations and criminal justice charges would be held over his head and used as leverage to further press his compliance.

  • Chris

    Andrew: I am unaware of the felony for threatening to kill but per the list above … first. Line .. .Wouldn’t have the indictment on the threat to kill fellow students that the FBI missed have resulted in Cruz being separated from his firearm arms?

  • wayne

    There is a difference between making a death threat as part of a criminal event, and making a death threat in the capacity of an alleged “crazy person.”

    -The means, ability, and a Plan, to carry out the threat is also highly relevant. If a person tells me he’s going to “kill the president with a ray gun by teleporting to the Whitehouse,” I will make the case the statement indicates an inability to care for oneself and a potential threat to himself by virtue of misadventure & obvious impairment, and it will be accepted. If someone states “I have a gun and am going to kill Person A.” That’s all anyone needs for a 72 hour hold & exam, or criminal charges, and most likely both. (again, we’ll use the threat of jail to backstop Treatment compliance in addition to a Treatment Order lasting initially 90 days, including forced hospitalization and medications as indicated.

    The criminal justice pathway gets you arrested and charged.
    The mental-health pathway gets you examined and adjudicated “mentally defective.” (You may or may not be charged, depending on the Case specifics.)
    This would be done in parallel with and coordinated by the DA & Mental Health. The Bias is to treat individuals with mental illness, rather than criminally prosecuting them.
    In both situations however, the ability to rapidly get a leash around a potential live threat, is present and always has been.

    We don’t need any more laws. We don’t need any more “Programs,” and we don’t need to put our Constitutional Rights up for a Vote or at the whim of traumatized High School students who know less than nothing.

  • Andrew_W

    Wayne, thanks for the information, my concern was that the procedure to separate someone from their weapons on the grounds of mental health might have been more difficult and drawn out than you describe.

    Chris, Wouldn’t have the indictment on the threat to kill fellow students that the FBI missed have resulted in Cruz being separated from his firearm arms? if the FBI had followed up it’s likely that they would have discovered the threats to kill, but from what I’ve seen they remained unaware of those threats.

  • raymond mckay

    I encourage reasonable persons to look up ” youth promise act” This was implemented in Illinois schools, Then transplanted to broward county florida. Youthful offenders avoid a paper trail. No records, No arrest. To keep them out of prison. if this kid killer had had an arrest record perhaps he could not have obtained firearms. Maybe i’m wrong .

  • Andrew_W: raymond mckay points us to another pertinent issue here that you so conveniently don’t want to note. The police were not informed because school officials were working under this act and policies established during the Obama administration to reduce arrests. The county police here worked with the schools to avoid arrests at all costs, which meant that people who should have been arrested, such as Cruz, were not.

    While it might be a good policy to try to protect young students from arrest in these early years, so their lives are not destroyed by one bad action, this is not what we had here. The authorities did not exercise common sense. Cruz was a repeated threat. Anyone with a willingness to do their job properly could have seen it. Many I am sure did, but bowed to the political pressure to “save the children!”

    We mustn’t nitpick around the edges or make excuses for this incompetence and ideological failure. People should be fired, in large numbers. Some might even be liable for criminal prosecution for failing to report criminal acts.

  • Robin Fox

    I am a gun owner in NJ and I used to think that there was one requirement to get a gun that we have here, that if every state adopted it, the number of “lone wolf” shootings would drop dramatically. That requirement is 2 personal references, not relatives, who have known the person at least 2 years. I no longer think that this requirement is going to be as useful as I originally thought. No system is stronger than its weakest link. Having to provide personal references will work only if the authorities (local police or sheriff) follow through by contacting those references, not only to make sure they are favorable, but that they actually exist. As long as our safety has to rely on government workers doing their jobs, we are going to continue to see more Parkland type shootings.

  • Robin Fox wrote, “As long as our safety has to rely on government workers…”

    And this illustrates the problem. A free people do not rely on “government workers.” They are self-reliant, taking personal responsibility for their actions. The government stands back, and does as little to interfere with that freedom and self-reliance as it can. This principle is what built the United States and made it the world’s most prosperous nation.

    Sadly, too many people no longer believe in this. You appear to have been one of them. Maybe now your eyes are opening?

  • Andrew_W

    Mr. Zimmerman, you claim I “so conveniently don’t want to note” raymond mckay’s comment. Have you considered the possibility that it’s simply a case of me, until now, not having the time to consider his comment?

    In the below link it is claimed that: “Cruz was not part of the district’ PROMISE program, in which students committing minor crimes can avoid going to jail.”

    The link also claims that:When Nikolas Cruz turned 18, he refused to let the school district continue providing him with crucial mental health and other services — and there was nothing officials could do about it, Broward Schools Superintendent Robert Runcie said Monday.

    Federal law tied their hands, he said, and also prevented them from forcing Cruz to attend a school for special needs students.
    Once Cruz was considered an adult, he could stay at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High, even though a team of specialists recommended in November 2016 that he be placed in a school for students with emotional and behavioral issues, Runcie said.

    “You can’t make someone do something when the law says they have the right to make that determination,” Runcie said.

    http://www.sun-sentinel.com/local/broward/parkland/florida-school-shooting/fl-florida-school-shooting-runcie-interview-20180226-story.html

    It’s obvious that the system as a whole failed to address Nikolas Cruz mental health issues, I’ve no idea how the system, considering his issues failed to bar him from gun ownership but the evidence to me is that there are wide systemic problems and your all too typical knee-jerk reaction of trying to blame the Obama administration due to the ” youth promise act” is simply wrong.

  • Andrew_W

    Robin Fox.
    The current US system is reactive in allowing gun ownership, someone has to do something bad enough to be an obvious risk, whereas in most Western countries the gun ownership system is proactive, gun owners are required to have a gun license, which is very much like a drivers license in function, you sit a test. In New Zealand after you pass the test someone belonging to an organization that represent gun owners (When I got my license it was NZ Mountain Safety) visits to ensure you’re a responsible person, they speak to your friends and family and if you check out you get your license. Once you have your license you can buy and sell legal firearms with few obstacles. You have to present your license to the seller when buying.
    I think it’s a good system and would have ensured that Nikolas Cruz did not legally acquire firearms.

    The NRA would be a good candidate as an organization to do the vetting.

    Of course I appreciate that in the US guns are seen as the guarantor of freedom, in other countries functioning democratic systems serve that roll. Perhaps if the US were to switch to a fully functioning democracy rather than retaining the current system the country could then switch to a gun licensing system, but all that is all obviously a long way away.

  • Commodude

    Robin,

    The 2 personal references can cause issues. I moved to where I live from another state, I’m not local. The requirement here is to have 3 personal references not related to you, but residing in the same county.

    My work and social life are essentially in another county.

    I have acquaintances in this county, but none I want to use as a personal reference for a firearm.

    As such, I’m a veteran with stable employment, who has been a community leader at times, who is a leader in my workplace, who cannot fulfill an entirely bureaucratic requirement and as such cannot completely exercise my second amendment rights.

    Be careful what you suggest as requirements. There are no requirements to exercise freedom of speech. There are no requirements to be safe from unreasonable search and seizure. The requirements to own a handgun in the northeast are constitutionally abhorrent.

    It’s times like this I sit back and wonder why I spent 20+ years defending the Constitution…

  • Commodude

    Andrew,

    There were many, many breakdowns in the system which allowed Mr. Cruz to acquire firearms. It doesn’t matter how many regulations you enact, unless they are enforced, they are meaningless and counterproductive.

    I wish law in the US had to follow the same requirements of employment rules under binding arbitration, which requires the rules to be reasonable and equitably enforced. (three tests of discipline: Is there a rule, is there a reasonable rule, is the rule equitably enforced) The answer in all cases in the current US criminal justice system would be a resounding “no” on the third test, and no an many issues on the second test.

  • pzatchok

    It seems like part of the failure here was that a school was required to provide medical care.

    Sounds stupid to me. Schools have enough trouble as it is why burden them with this?

    And why would any school member want to be the person who is seen by the “patient” as the reason they are in jail? Hell no they would never want that. Some crazy guy targeting you now, No way. I would rather hang a steak off my neck and get into a ring of starving pitbulls.

    Every excessive violent outburst should have been reported to the police.

    In Ohio our state constitution says Ohio must provide an education and transport to that school for every school age student.
    It does not state what school they must attend but the liberals incist it be a public school and every student at least have a chance at being main streamed. Even if they know the attempt will end up wasting a few years of a students time.
    Their is nothing saying we can not educate them while in prison or a mental health facility. But the liberals want them all main streamed because it makes them feel better.

  • wayne

    Andrew_W:
    Ref: your 12:53am comment including–
    Ref; “When Nikolas Cruz turned 18, he refused to let the school district continue providing him with crucial mental health and other services — and there was nothing officials could do about it, Broward Schools Superintendent Robert Runcie said.”

    –Superintendent man is dissembling and telling partial lies, and Media is too stupid to explain how the actual systems function separately or in unison.

    I’ve seen this statement in multiple sources, and it’s just not true. (He may very well have said it, but the content is ridiculous.) It co-mingles Special Education services with Mental Health services, and disregards the fact Florida has public ‘adult mental health’ and ‘child mental health’ services, just as the criminal justice system handles juveniles & adults.

    If the question is:
    Did the school district want to get rid of this kid the second he turned 18?
    -Absolutely they did. They wanted this kid to go away, in the worst possible way, and he did not disappoint them.
    THEY created this kid and then cut him loose. Now, they are trying to protect their phony baloney jobs.

  • Andrew_W

    “THEY created this kid and then cut him loose.”

    I’ve seen similar outcasts at school, the kids with no friends who wander around,often they get targeted by the bullies, I’ve no doubt their problems start before they’re born: low IQ, mild autism, dyslexia, Aspergers, (not all, but often more than one of those conditions, think Sheldon Cooper without the brains) cause them to be misfits from the start. Being one of them would be the worst things possible in life, a true life sentence from birth. While most either just accept their lot or quietly top themselves, some strike out at those around them especially their tormentors.

    Once they’re identified as having these problems I think there are two things society needs to do to keep them and others safe, keep them away from dangerous weapons and get them support. I agree that a state controlled education system is never going to be very good at supporting them, which is why I favor charter schools. Charter schools can be tuned better to the needs of particular types of children. I also think, as I’ve probably made clear, that a system that doesn’t pro-actively screen people before allowing them to own guns is inevitably going to fail in this area more than a system that does pro-actively screen them, and I think giving the responsibility for screening to organizations like the NRA would be a good compromise.

    ‘I Was Almost a School Shooter.’ Man Pens Heartfelt Letter About Mental Health and Guns
    http://time.com/5167365/i-was-almost-a-school-shooter-man-pens-heartfelt-letter-about-mental-health-and-guns/

  • Edward

    Taking the guns first then going through the due process is another instance of Trump not being the conservative he wants to pretend to be. His first instinct is as a lifelong liberal Democrat. This was manifested again today with his steel and aluminum tariff.

    Andrew_W,
    People do not belong to the Promise Program, schools and police departments follow its rules in order to obtain additional federal funds. It is increasingly clear that this program is one of the reasons that nothing was done to protect the students at the school or at any of the other schools that he had been sent to.

    The current US system is reactive in allowing gun ownership, someone has to do something bad enough to be an obvious risk

    This is how we are a free people. We have the right and duty to protect ourselves. To reduce gun ownership to the result of a test and license reduces our right to a privilege, like the government did to our right to drive a car. And government will loathe us having guns, just like so many other democracies around the world.

    Of course I appreciate that in the US guns are seen as the guarantor of freedom, in other countries functioning democratic systems serve that roll.

    Except that in other “fully functioning democratic systems,” freedoms have been lost due to those systems taking away rights and freedoms. As I noted in another related thread, all it takes is for such fascists as the US Democrats to get into office, as Mark Steyn pointed out in 2011:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XH70VHZ857M (9 minutes)

    If the US were to “switch to a fully functioning democracy” then we would lose our freedoms, just as you and the others are losing theirs. First they would take away the guns (sound familiar?), then only the law-breakers would have guns, and when seconds count, the rest of us would be dependent upon the police, who are only minutes away. That didn’t work out so well for the students at Parkland, did it? Nor did it work at Charlie Hebdo, which had a police woman standing guard — unarmed, in the French tradition of standing guard. Nor did it work at a long list of places.

    Next they would take away our freedom of speech, as Steyn noted is happening in supposedly “fully functioning democratic systems.”

    I prefer “retaining the current system,” where a neighbor or onsite police officers can save lives, and we all get to keep our rights, freedoms and liberty. It is only as America devolves into a system more like the other “fully functioning democratic systems” that We the People lose more and more of our liberty. Those “fully functioning democratic systems” are fairly left wing (American left wing, not New Zealand left wing).

  • Andrew_W

    “First they would take away the guns (sound familiar?),”
    But they haven’t taken away my guns, they’re in the room with me now.

    “Next they would take away our freedom of speech”
    But they haven’t taken away my freedom of speech, in the Reporters without boarders Press Freedom Index my country ranks 13th, Australia 19th and the US 43rd. In the CATO institutes Human freedom index NZ is 3rd, Australia 5th and the US 17th.

    In the UK based Economist Intelligence Unit Democracy Index NZ is ranked 4th and Australia 8th as a “Full democracy’s” the US is ranked 21st as a “Flawed Democracy”.

    I’m starting to suspect you guys in the US have gotten a bit distracted by what the Constitution says the government’s supposed to do and haven’t been paying attention to the more important things like what are the actual effects – rather than assumed effects, as laid out by your forefathers, of what the government does.

    Those “fully functioning democratic systems” are fairly left wing (American left wing, not New Zealand left wing).

    I agree that’s an important distinction to make, but it’s when I look at American right wing vs NZ right wing, that I see the big difference, from here it looks like the US right has become something of an authoritarian right wing, the NZ left – right spectrum is more Classical Liberal right to Social Democrat left.

  • Commodude

    Andrew, I would be truly concerned if anyone rated the US as a full Democracy. We are not, have never been, and god willing, never will be.

  • Edward

    Andrew_W,
    But they haven’t taken away my guns, they’re in the room with me now.

    I didn’t say that they did. Do you understand what people write?

    They did, however, dramatically restrict guns in Australia, and other countries have draconian gun laws as well. Or don’t you know these facts?

    But they haven’t taken away my freedom of speech

    This is what hate speech laws are all about in various countries. Did you even watch the Steyn video? Do you ever look at another side during your discussions? Is there any reasoning with you, or are you closed minded?

    I’m starting to suspect you guys in the US have gotten a bit distracted by what the Constitution says the government’s supposed to do and haven’t been paying attention to the more important things like what are the actual effects – rather than assumed effects, as laid out by your forefathers, of what the government does.

    We are very well aware of the important things like the actual effects. Americans lived in far more freedom before the leftists started usurping our rights. Which is what I wrote the last time, where I said that America is devolving into that “Utopian paradise” of supposedly “fully functioning democratic systems,” but you don’t seem to have much reading comprehension.

    Which explains your interesting interpretations of some of the links you give us.

    The Constitution worked very well, back when we followed it. Now that we don’t follow it, we have all kinds of problems with tyrannical governance. You must have noted this, what with all those numbers you keep flashing around. There was a time when we were much higher in the rankings, back when we didn’t have the supposedly “fully functioning democratic systems” that you think are so great.

    from here it looks like the US right has become something of an authoritarian right wing

    You need a better telescope. Looking from there, you are confusing the Republican Party for America’s right wing. The Republicans have gone full-on leftist. They have been moving in that direction for a long time, but they are as left wing, now, as the Democrats. Why else do you think they chose a lifelong liberal Democrat as presidential candidate? Why else do you think that there is a conservative contingent attempting to take back the Republican Party?

  • Andrew_W

    I know this is going to go over your head Edward but I’ll say it anyway: Americans are all in the same boat, but you’re not acting like it.

    In a democracy, even America’s flawed democracy, politics is about winning elections, you win elections by focusing on the specific issues that can win you votes. Why do you imagine the “right” that you adhere to is doing so badly?

    The answer is that you’ve become focused of what the Constitution says ‘should be’ rather than what most American’s believe should be, and by focusing on everything Constitution, as if it’s the word of GOD (boy – oh – boy, could I start drawing parallels with other religious fanatics here) you’ve alienated a large proportion of the population, so they don’t support your candidates, so you lose.

    It’s like:
    The Universities are being taken over by SJW’s – but we’ve got our guns!
    The politicians are corrupt – but we’ve got our guns!
    The bureaucracy is out of control – but we’ve got our guns!

    Ideological positions you oppose are overrunning your country, this obsession over the religion of constitutional rights is alienating people who would otherwise support the right, but don’t because your version of the right is seen as composed of extremist ideologues.

    You think the US is shifting too far left? Blame yourselves and your archaic inflexibility. If you alienate too much of the population that’s what you get, stop whining about “the left” and start thinking about connecting with the voters.

  • Andrew_W: Hm. The right is sure doing bad here in America, ain’t it? Who controls the House? Who controls the Senate? Who controls the Presidency? Who controls a large majority of the state legislatures?

    The problem is that the voters put these Republicans in power to institute constitutional policies, and the Republican leadership has generally failed to follow through on that demand. Thus, we got Trump.

    Of course, you, living in New Zealand half a world away, will dismiss my analysis, because you know exactly what is going on, and of course none of us, living here in the states, can understand it, without your wisdom.

    I find it interesting that among the comments in the past week in connection with Parkland, gun control, and the American Constitution, it has been an expert in Australia and an expert in New Zealand who have come here to explain why we in the U.S. are wrong about our Constitution, our rights, and our political and cultural problems.

  • I should add that our problem in the States is that the left is now basically a regional party, dominant in only the coastal and some internal urban areas. Worse, the left is using that dominance to demand total power in those regions. While the rest of the country moves right (which means honoring individual rights, the Constitution, and the rule of law), the left in its regional pockets is working to impose a fascist rule. One need only do a little close research, visit these areas, talk to conservatives who live there, to recognize this.

    Andrew_W of course will not believe me, because from New Zealand he has a perfect sense of the cultural state of the U.S.

  • Andrew_W

    Hm. The right is sure doing bad here in America, ain’t it? Who controls the House? Who controls the Senate? Who controls the Presidency? Who controls a large majority of the state legislatures?

    According to Edward the left does, so perhaps if you’re claiming that the right does you should take that up with him.

    I find it interesting that among the comments in the past weak in connection with Parkland, gun control, and the American Constitution, it has been an expert in Australia and an expert in New Zealand who have come here to explain why we in the U.S. are wrong about our Constitution, our rights, and our political and cultural problems.

    You’re welcome, we often get American experts in the NZ media telling us what we’re doing wrong down here so I’m happy to help redress the imbalance.

  • Andrew_W

    Andrew_W of course will not believe me, because from New Zealand he has a perfect sense of the cultural state of the U.S.
    I’ve always considered that it’s important to listen to a diversity of opinion, I’ve also seen people adhering strongly to a narrative become so blinkered that they’re unable to see the wider picture, so I’m happy to introduce a different perspective in an attempt to broaden understanding, but don’t get me wrong, I read the reply’s carefully and am always happy when people like Wayne and Garry provide sound arguments against my points. It would be great if people offered sound arguments rather than bluster and personal attacks more often.

  • David

    Andrew_W, Hello. Three things if I may:

    1. Your 3/1, 10:49 pm post is a nice piece of writing. I disagree about parts of it, but that’s less important than the thought-provoking your post and the subsequent back and forth provided in my old head. I like hearing views from outside the country.

    2. I think that all Americans bear responsibility for our country’s broken and corrupt national political system whether we admit it or not as individuals. We can waste time blaming liberal or conservative, left or right, urban or rural, etc. In the end though, we as a People have allowed our national politics to corrode to the point that in 2016 our two major choices for president were D. Trump or H. Clinton. THAT is a sad comment on our nation’s current status. However, I still believe we as Americans and our Constitution will adapt and triumph if we are still willing to do the hard thing – put truth and respect foremost in our debates and be mindful of the collective consensus genius that forged the Constitution and the subsequent Amendments. Not perfect, but pretty darn good. The 2nd Amendment has served our nation very well I think.

    3. N.Z. is one of the spots on the globe I very much hope to explore before I shuffle off this planet. It’s incredible from what I’ve heard from friends thru the years and from what I’ve learned from reading, video explorations, etc.

  • Andrew_W

    David, I appreciate your comment.

  • Max

    “Take the guns first, go through due process second”

    Guilty until proven innocent? What country is President Trump from anyway? He sure shot himself in the foot on this one (pun intended).
    Trump has officially betrayed the people, he’s done. His base will not re-elect him now. He’s done a lot of backpedaling since that statement, but it’ll take a lot more to win back the trust once you start talking like a communist/socialist/Progressive.
    He’s initiating metal price controls to change the narrative. If he wants things to be fair between us and china why don’t he just take away the China subsidies? ( yes, we give them money)
    If he believes where there’s the smell of smoke, there’s fire… Why has he not fulfilled his campaign promise of locking Hillary up? They can always do her due process later. Or for that matter he can step down as president untell the Russia investigation is complete. They should be done with due process in five or 10 years.
    Anyone who thinks “act now, due process later” need only look at the current way law enforcement officers are stealing (confiscate) money from motorist and people, arresting the money because they think (pretend) it was used in the commission of a crime. Due process somehow never happens. SOM ? Due process was created to make taking peoples rights/property away from them harder and inconvenient. The morality of a court of your peers will see through the injustice (we hope).
    Because once a government official has what they want from you, due process is no longer a concern. If “you” initiate your day in court, it will cost you everything!
    The right to defend ourselves cannot be taken away, but our ability to defend ourselves can be withheld by someone who doesn’t want you to fight back. When they no longer have the fear of losing their own lives, those with the guns will not hesitate to take other peoples lives. (might makes right, it’s survival of the fittest) It removes the hassle of due process.
    Where is the plaintiff? He’s dead. Court dismissed. (read the declaration of independence for a good example of what, where, when, and why people challenge their own government.)

    What is an assault weapon?
    https://ucr.fbi.gov/crime-in-the-u.s/2010/crime-in-the-u.s.-2010/violent-crime/aggravatedassaultmain
    According to the FBI, anything used for the purpose of causing injury or bodily harm.
    19% cutting instruments/knives
    21% guns (most of which were handguns)
    26% hands, feet, body parts as a weapon.
    32%. Other weapons. Like the car that was used to kill the ANTAFA girl in the parade/riot or the rental truck terrorist used in New York to kill people on a bicycle path in front of a school.(he did not even use his hand guns)
    I’m sure suicide bomb and gasoline is in there somewhere.
    One thing is for sure, we can’t rely on the police or the FBI to protect us. Even if they are good people, those will be removed from the job in favor of those who will do what is needed to be done. If we were a democracy, only the liberals on the east and west coast would determine our laws. Can we trust Progressive liberals with all the guns? Remember Leland Ye, a top ranking California democrat, a soft spoken child psychologist Brady bill award winning legislator that was importing fully automatic weapons and shoulder fired missiles for the Democratic cause? He should’ve used the Hillary Clinton’s I had good intentions, and did not mean to, and I had no evil intent, defense. He just needed money to pay for his election expenses, there was no harm done. It was for a good cause, for his children. For everyone’s children…

    Just like the schoolteacher who wanted to teach an object lesson by bringing a gun to school and firing it in his classroom… No harm done, his boss said let him go back to teaching???
    As President Trump said, it’s a mental health issue.

  • Cotour

    Max, excellent comments.

    How about something like this coming to a “Progressive” politically correct country near you soon?

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5443599/White-South-African-farmers-removed-land.html#ixzz58VXEVgp7

    How close was Obama from perpetrating something like is now going on in South Africa? Think thats not what Obama intended or was pushing towards? An AR15 is a handy item to own sometimes, especially when your own government tells you that its not quite time to slaughter you, not yet any way.

    As for Trump we are going to have to see how he manipulates his way through the ever growing opposition and daily obstacles put before him. Right now he alone is the best chance at anything approaching an American leader. There are two approaching events that will define our future.

    1. The I. G. Horowitz report and how Sessions deals with it in how many indictments and prosecutions will result within the FBI, DOJ, CIA and the Hillary crime syndicate. Sessions is one of them and is loath to prosecute his own from where I sit. The reconciliation between the two laws that were created specifically for Hillary and those who surrounded her MUST happen, and if it does not were are doomed, we are fraudulent, we are thee most corrupt and going by way of South Africa or the like.

    And 2. The 2018 elections and how the balance of power settles. If Trump / the Republican party retains power and even expands power than we will again be going in the right direction, and still Trump will be constantly opposed by his own. That is why he is being neutered right now as we approach the election, if he does not prove his leadership then again we are long term doomed because the corruption like a cancer will have grown too invasive and in the end it will kill us all bathed in political correctness and Socialism. Trumps presidency will only be a blip is the journey down the corrupt sewer.

    Its government, it can be nothing else.

  • David

    Cotour, if Trump is “the best chance at anything approaching an American leader,” than this country may be doomed. For goodness sake, America has tens of millions of adults who are in the age group most likely to seek election to the nation’s highest office. Are you really so taken with Trump that you can not think of even one person who would be a better President? I had hoped I would never again see a President who could lie to the country the way Bill Clinton did, yet here is Trump.

    Regarding former president Obama, I won so many bets from friends who back at the time of his election were sure he’d come for our guns. Yet eight years latter, I (and my friends) never lost one weapon, one bullet/shell, one dram of powder. Lots of good free meals for me! Maybe I was just lucky, but I always had faith that the 2nd Amendment would stand.

    Truly, you present as an intelligent, thoughtful, and concerned citizen even when I disagree with you on the issues themselves. Your willingness to challenge the thinking of others is admirable. But for the life of me, I don’t get your unwavering view of him given how he has conducted himself and the chaos left in his path in his first 13 months. It is one thing to shake up things, to drain the swamp, to have to put up with a few bumps, etc. to bring about much needed change in the way the executive branch functions. It is quite another to behave and disgrace the office the way he does.

    Sorry to be a tired, grumpy old man…

  • Edward

    Andrew_W,
    This is why everyone here thinks of you as a leftist. Your comments are the same as US leftist ideology and philosophy.

    According to Edward the left does

    Robert and I do not agree on everything, but that is how conservatives work, unlike leftists who use peer pressure to make sure that everyone toes the “party line.”

    I’ve always considered that it’s important to listen to a diversity of opinion

    You may “listen” but you do not seem to “hear” what is being said. Rather than consider the points made, you tell us what it looks like from your far away location. You may think that you are seeing a bigger picture, from your farther-back location, but your comments tell us that your picture is fuzzy. What you think is careful reading is not reflected in your comments, which suggest that you do not comprehend what you have read. That tells me that you are not as careful as you think you are.

    Your different perspective is not as different as you think. Your ideas are old news, here in the US, and they generally come from our left wing. We have long ago considered them and rejected many of them, as many of them have already not worked when tried. Your perspective is not as new or different as you think it is.

  • wayne

    Max-
    I’ve seen that summary of Alinsky’s rules before.
    In the interest of clarity, his actual “rules” are:

    Rule 1: Power is not only what you have, but what the enemy thinks you have.
    Rule 2: Never go outside the experience of your people.
    Rule 3: Whenever possible, go outside the experience of the enemy.
    Rule 4: Make the enemy live up to their own book of rules.
    Rule 5: Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.
    Rule 6: A good tactic is one that your people enjoy.
    Rule 7: A tactic that drags on for too long becomes a drag.
    Rule 8: Keep the pressure on.
    Rule 9: The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.
    Rule 10: The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition.
    Rule 11: If you push a negative hard enough, it will push through and become a positive.
    Rule 12: The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative.
    Rule 13: Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.
    [https://archive.org/details/RulesForRadicals]

    For a far more recognizable outline of what the left intends, on the ground, see:

    “The Weight of the Poor-A Strategy to End Poverty”
    https://www.scribd.com/document/61004896/The-Cloward-Piven-Strategy-The-Weight-of-the-Poor-A-Strategy-to-End-Poverty-by-Cloward-Piven-pub-2-May-1966

  • wayne

    “Message to the school shooters: past, present and future.”
    Dr. Jordan Peterson
    March 3, 2018 [03-03-2018]
    https://youtu.be/GYua-3JmnT4
    (36:39)

    Wherein he discusses; “set yourself in perfect order, before you criticize the World.”

  • Andrew_W

    This is why everyone here thinks of you as a leftist. Your comments are the same as US leftist ideology and philosophy.

    I doubt everyone here thinks I’m a leftist, I’ve commented on several posts and I support the typical Classical liberal/Libertarian position on most issues. I see the Libertarian position as further right than the usual US Conservative positions, which are more about maintaining the status quo: less social freedoms than Libertarians and often less economic freedoms as well. However, I’m not hyper-partisan, I recognize that other political positions are legitimate, and that as social animals there will be a strong instinctive belief in a large section of the population that the tribe has a duty to take care of all of its members. So I expect the left to exist, and the right, and also the Conservatives, and in a democracy government must strive to follow a middle path.

    but that is how conservatives work, unlike leftists who use peer pressure to make sure that everyone toes the “party line.”

    That’s narcissistic BS, there’s diversity of opinion in both left and right politics, there’re those on both the left and the right who smear others within their parties for not being right or left enough. and you don’t have to search very hard on this blog to find such smears by the blog owner and members of the in-crowd here targeting RINO’s or other Conservatives for not being conservative enough.

    You may “listen” but you do not seem to “hear” what is being said. . .
    There are commenters here that I read more carefully than others, because I think some are far more astute than others.

    Your different perspective is not as different as you think. Your ideas are old news, . . .

    A truly original idea is a rare thing. I’ve made a couple of points here recently that no-one has disputed or replied to me on:
    1. If society is demanding that school cops are responsible for doing the job of SWAT teams in the event of an active shooter they should be trained and equipped like SWAT teams, for society to make the demand but not supply the necessary gear and training is a failure on the part of society, not the under trained and equipped officers.
    2. licensing of gun owners is more pro-active than back-ground checks, why not bring in the licensing but put the power of issuing licenses in the hands of gun owner organizations like the NRA rather than the Government, in NZ it’s easy to get a license perhaps because the screening isn’t done by the police.

    If these are old suggestions, where can I find the discussions?

  • Commodude

    Andrew, there is diversity of opinion on the left, what is lacking is diversity of action. They toe the line or risk losing funding, backing, or a voice. How many Democrat Senators break stance with Sen. Schumer?

    Short answer is NONE. The last one who broke ranks and went a different path, Sen. Lieberman, is now essentially an un-person in the party.

  • Cotour

    Andrew W:

    “I doubt everyone here thinks I’m a leftist, I’ve commented on several posts and I support the typical Classical liberal/Libertarian position on most issues.”

    You confuse yourself, Libertarianism is so Right, it is in fact Left. Your a Leftist. Classical Liberal philosophy is Conservatism. Do not mix the two as they were one please.

    Libertarianism is ONLY a personal philosophy, “Do un to others as you would have them do to you”, Period. Nothing more nothing less, it is not a political party nor movement of consequence, a feel good, warm, fuzzy righteous blanket of a political “Safe space” when you are unable to understand the true nature of political power, the nature of corruption and manipulation. Sorry.

    David:

    When was the last time when you applied your everyday common sense American mind to things that go on in Washington and the two agreed with each other? (This answer should not take too long)

    Your application of a moral standard or a test of reason has no place in the corrupt vortex that is Washington D.C., as a matter of fact the more you think that way the more they will just continue to lie to you and tell you what YOU want to hear. We must think different and Trump thinks (and acts) different. I know it is counter intuitive but if you are open to thinking different you will come to understand it, maybe.

    My only test for Trump is that he is interested and focused on supporting our Constitution and American interests, everything that issues forth from those two standards can only be good for America. I do not care that Trump chase large breasted women, or sophomorically brags about grabbing their P word, or that he is an ego maniac that loves to see himself on TV, or that he has his name on everything, I DO NOT CARE, those are his demons to deal and live with.

    I only care about what I listed above, supporting our Constitution and American interests and Trump has been the only non Washington animal to be able to actually win in a primary against ALL of the standard political tools that are professional politicians. Who by the way are the ones that are destroying our country because of their inability to operate outside of the Washington power circle of corruption and influence.

    Trump, is politically asymmetrical, he is an American meatball like you and me, right now, good, bad or otherwise he is THEE best bet that Americans have at remaining at some level citizens of America as founded. And we can all agree how far we have strayed from that point in time.

    So regarding Trump, and this is by no means perfect, having the ability to step back from all of your comfortable and known “Normal” criteria that you think an empowered politician SHOULD be, is exactly the opposite, and that is a good thing, as Martha Stewart would say.

    You being a self confessed “Grumpy old man”, which usually means that you actually know something, I would suppose that you think that Romney would be a great president, correct? Good looking, rich, successful, a religious family man, well spoken, despises Trump and his “weakness’s” of the flesh, what potential! Right?

    WRONG!

    People like Romney are great at corporate raiding, making millions for themselves but is poison to lead the country because he becomes a social engineer that knows much better about how you should spend your money certainly than you do. Romney, and others like McCain, Rubio, Schumer, ALL of them are death to America and Americans, ready to deliver us all to the U.N. ultimately.

    Up until the point that Trump does likewise as the others listed above then he remains at this point in time the best hope America has, I know that thought disturbs you. Think of it this way, you need a high risk brain operation and the man with the best survival rate for the particular very risky brain surgery you need is a whore master and an egomaniac who has a success rate of 95% for your particular problem. The next best surgeon has a near ZERO percent success rate and you are certain to die.

    Now, choose who you are going to hire to do your surgery.

    Happy Sunday to you.

  • Cotour

    David:

    A short list of Trump accomplishments that you can focus on for some degree of comfort, and again, in just his first year:

    http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/366429-trumps-top-10-accomplishments-of-2017

    List for me the other presidents that have done the same or similar, even under the pressures that he has been under every day of those 13 months. The list is short, maybe G. Washington and F. D. Roosevelt, thats about it. And if he is able to remain president for eight years those are the presidents he may well will be associated with in rankings.

    PS: They were most all whore masters and ego maniacs, except maybe Harry Truman.

  • wayne

    Cotour–
    I must protest your bizarre characterization of libertarians. There is nothing authoritarian or totalitarian, about libertarians. Our Country was formed on libertarian principles.

  • Cotour

    People who wrap themselves in the “Libertarian” blanket of fuzzy righteousness are modern political posers. Sorry if that includes you.

    It has no meaning over and above a personal philosophy, political happy talk for those who find themselves confused by the by design confusing political landscape. What it was is not what it is today IMO.

  • Cotour

    I will elaborate:

    A friend who is a practicing lawyer also calls himself and identifies as a “Libertarian”. But in my many conversations with him it is revealed that he is a very big supporter of the George Soros agenda. Now couldn’t we classify George Soros as thee ultimate Libertarian? He is so libertarian that he he becomes a full blown Leftist / New World order, no borders free for all master, all controlled by a central government as in the U.N..

    See what I mean Wayne? Its a term that has been once again high jacked by the Left and is left meaningless. My friend is in essence a supporter of Leftist agenda although he thinks that he is a fair minded and respectful “Libertarian”. A distinction without a difference, but in the modern world it sounds so fair minded and balanced.

  • David

    Cotour, thank you as always for your reply. If we were sitting down to drink or a meal, the conversation on all matters political, would be quite enjoyable for me. Truly would be.

    That said, after reading your reply and Mr. Zimmerman’s reply to me this morning, I just realized this very moment that I’ve made a mistake trying to argue positions on our country’s political situation here at this site. That is NOT your problem, or Mr. Zimmerman’s, or anyone else’s. It’s mine. If I could bang out a hundred words a minute, I’d go toe to toe with anyone or all if I needed to.

    But I can’t. Everyone’s valuable time is better spent in other pursuits rather than reading my clunky musings.

    Best wishes to you and everyone else here.

  • Andrew_W

    Cotour, “Classical Liberal philosophy is Conservatism.

    Libertarianism is ONLY a personal philosophy

    Libertarianism, Classical Liberalism, and Socialism are ideological positions that are constants, we can have nice simple definitions for them that change little through time.

    It’s Conservatism that’s not a true political philosophy, it is what the word says it is: a resistance to change, holding on to “traditional” beliefs. Conservatives get dragged along by the changes that others make to their society, this can be seen by the never ending changing positions that conservatives hold, When there was slavery it was the conservatives of the time who fought to retain it. When women didn’t have the vote conservatives wanted no change, when being gay was illegal conservatives wanted no change etc.

    Classical Liberalism is not Conservatism, there are very smart people who make it clear that they are Classical Liberals and not conservatives because they do not subscribe to clinging on to yesterdays social codes, J B Peterson is one, F A Hayek was another.

  • David: It appears I might have presented you with some facts you did not wish to digest, and rather than digest them, you choose to run away.

    Ah, the coming dark age.

  • Cotour

    David:

    Your “clunky” (?) or otherwise musings is what this is all about.

    Think of expressing yourself here whether it is one sentence or a 500 word diatribe as a therapy of sorts. I think we all post here and on other forms of media for that exact reason, therapy related to gaining some measure of agreement and or control over the subject at hand, politics in this instance.

    I also enjoy very much the level of science and space subject matter, BTB is unique in that it not only puts up thoughtful science and space material but also includes what it all in many ways springs from, politics.

    You sound like you are signing off, I hope that is not the case.

  • Andrew_W

    David: “Everyone’s valuable time is better spent in other pursuits rather than reading my clunky musings.”

    I take issue with you on that one David.

  • Andrew_W

    Robert, have you ever wondered why the number of followers and commenters you have here remains so limited?

  • Andrw_W: spoken as always, from ignorance. You have absolutely no idea how many followers or commenters I have, as I do not make that information public. Nor do you have the slightest idea whether they are shrinking, growing, or remaining the same.

    You make a bald-faced statement based on nothing, and then expect everyone to believe it and for the conversation to continue from there.

    My readership and commenters has been growing steadily and happily from year to year. If those who cannot tolerate some facts placed in their face should run away in terror, it is no skin off my nose.

  • Cotour

    You keep wrapping yourself in your fuzzy blanket, Andrew W.

    You can explain all that to the Chinese when they arrive.

    If you think about it New Zealand also looks like just one big stationary air craft carrier in the South Pacific Ocean. Who you gonna call, Ghost Busters?.

  • Garry

    Cotour wrote,

    “I think we all post here and on other forms of media for that exact reason, therapy related to gaining some measure of agreement and or control over the subject at hand, politics in this instance.”

    I have to disagree; I post here primarily to organize my thoughts and add my perspective, in the hopes that others will respond to my input with new information/perspectives so that I can get a more complete, better ordered view of things. I get my therapy through physical exercise, which also helps clarify my thinking.

    Commodude wrote, “Andrew, there is diversity of opinion on the left, what is lacking is diversity of action. They toe the line or risk losing funding, backing, or a voice.”

    I couldn’t agree more, and Lieberman is a good example, but to me the most glaringly obvious example is Bernie Sanders: Hillary and company cheated him terribly and blatantly, yet after losing the nomination through her criminal acts, rather than fighting back and holding her accountable, he campaigned on her behalf.

  • Cotour

    Gary:

    “I post here primarily to organize my thoughts and add my perspective, in the hopes that others will respond to my input with new information/perspectives so that I can get a more complete, better ordered view of things. ”

    What do you think that action describes? Do you think that what goes on in politics is not about psychological manipulation and controlling human thought processes? We all need “therapy” in some form or other because this type of conditioning is focused on keeping everyone confused so as to present the “solution” in the form of political agenda and leadership.

    “Cognitive processing therapy (CPT) is a therapeutic technique designed to help people deal with traumatic life events and the lasting impact these events may have on their lives. The approach is intended to help people manage distressing thoughts more effectively by gaining a deeper understanding of how traumatic experiences can influence the way they think about themselves and the world.”

    In the first session, those in treatment will spend time discussing their particular PTSD symptoms with the therapist, who then offers education and information about these symptoms, other symptoms typical to PTSD, the ways people respond to trauma, the basics of cognitive theory, and how a standard course of CPT might proceed. People in treatment can then ask questions and write an impact statement, a short piece about the ways their views about the self, other people such as their partners or family, and the world may have been impacted by their experiences.

    Once treatment begins, individuals work to identify and understand their beliefs about emotional responses to a traumatic event, often becoming more aware of their thoughts and feelings in the process. To achieve this goal, therapists help those in treatment share a detailed account of the traumatic event. Through Socratic questioning, a therapist can start to challenge thoughts of self-blame and other interpretations that have resulted in feelings of being trapped or “stuck.” ”

    Throwing down and expressing yourself and testing your thinking about what is real and what is not, here or anywhere like it sounds like a form of therapy to me. That is a part of why I participate here and why I look forward to push back and testing. Bring it, its good for everyone. (If you can take it and defend your thinking that is. Many can not)

    Physical therapy, like riding your bike is just another form of therapy that contributes to the whole package.

  • Andrew_W

    Garry, isn’t it normal for the defeated primary candidates in both the Republican and Democrat races to endorse, support and campaign for their parties candidate for the top job? The lack of support for the Republican candidate in the race last time around the exception rather than the rule?

  • wayne

    against by better judgement I’ll try….
    Andrew_W:
    common misunderstanding and rather 1 dimensional thinking; (and once again from prior interchanges– what I see this rapidly devolving into is a fundemental disagreement on the functional-definitions of political-terminology, applied to the USA or not.)
    “socialism” has nothing to do with being social, “communism,” has little do with being communal, and “progressivism,” is only periphrally concerned with progress. “Capitalism,” was created by Marx as a derogatory descriptor, and is not exclusively concerned with ‘capital’ as defined in economics.

    “Conservatism,” cannot be narrowly construed to imply stagnation or antipathy toward change, and while it does seek to ‘conserve’ & replicate methods & ways-of-life we know for a fact work, (have worked, are working, and always will work) it does not do so in a blind fashion and is accutely aware of the malevolent instincts in mankind. Change for the sake of change is no more valid, than refusing all change a priori.
    The Tribe must be subservient to the Individual Ideal. Change does not imply improvement or an expansion of liberty and freedom.
    American Republicans, ca 1860, opposed slavery. Under your definitions they would be radicals, reactionaries, and/or anti-conservatives, because they opposed the current order and interpreted the Constituion as meaning what it said.

  • Cotour

    That is how you know that Trump was the best candidate, rejected by all who should have endorsed him.

    They ARE the problem and instinctively will continue to be the problem if no disruption is forced on them. The nature of the beast is to be corrupt.

  • Andrew_W

    Commodude: “Andrew, there is diversity of opinion on the left, what is lacking is diversity of action. They toe the line or risk losing funding, backing, or a voice. ”

    In this link:

    https://ask.metafilter.com/249507/How-often-do-votes-in-the-Senate-or-House-fall-along-party-lines

    Someone makes this comment:

    There are a number of analytics available. Perhaps most on point would be House Democrats vote with party and House Republicans vote with party. I believe you will see that the rate with which representatives move in concert with their leadership is quite high, more so for the Republicans. The Senate tends to be a bit more independent, reflecting their power relative to the party Senate Rs and Senate Ds. In the Senate, the pattern is reversed, with more Democrats toeing the party line than Republicans. This also reflects to a certain degree the differences between being the majority party and the minority party. The trend to vote more or less in lockstep is a relatively recent one — past Congresses had far more individual cross the aisles. Part of this is a result of the move of the South to the Republican side, previously many Southern Democrats were ideologically closer to the Republicans on many issues. You can still see that effect to a certain degree, Democrats from Utah and North Carolina are less likely to agree with their leadership and Republicans from left-leaning districts are more likely to break ranks.

    Annoyingly the Open Congress links aren’t working for me. But if anyone can put up a link that does show the cross party voting record for Republicans and Democrats over a few terms we could put this one to rest.

  • Andrew_W

    Wayne: “socialism” has nothing to do with being social, “communism,” has little do with being communal, and “progressivism,” is only periphrally concerned with progress.

    Socialism is a system in which the means of production are publicly owned.

    I would describe “progressivism” as an ideology, it’s just the opposite of conservatism.

    Change for the sake of change is no more valid, than refusing all change a priori.
    I agree, conservatives are important for stability, just as progressives are important for societal evolution.

    American Republicans, ca 1860, opposed slavery. I know Under your definitions they would be radicals, reactionaries, and/or anti-conservatives,

    The Republican party has several factions, in the US FPP system that applies to both major parties. At times the Republican party has been less conservative than at other times, with it sometimes having more Classical Liberals at the helm.

  • Garry

    Cotour, you and I have different definitions of therapy; for one, I don’t consider myself to have have been traumatized by politics. Also, I exercise as much for the mental effects as for the physical effects; after a long stressful day it feels great to release it all through physical exertion, and most of what I see as breakthrough ideas come while or shortly after exercise.

    I have been in conventional therapy; I found it very hard, often painful work that gave me new insights on myself and my interactions with the world. Posting here is not hard work or painful (and unlike most other sites with comments, reading others’ comments is usually not painful), and the insights I gain from posting and reading here relate to the world itself and have little to do with my interactions with the world.

    Andrew, yes, losing candidates usually endorse the candidate who won their party’s nomination, but especially since politicians tend to have outsized egos, I found it shocking that Sanders not only endorsed but actively campaigned for Hillary after she and her co-conspirators effectively robbed him. I figured that either they gave him something or held something over his head; his reaction to get treated so badly doesn’t compute otherwise.

    The contrast between how Hillary treated Bernie and how he treated her was even more stark after Cruz publicly refused to endorse Trump.

  • Andrew_W

    I suspect the thing being held over his head was nothing more than the prospect of a Trump presidency, ditto for Cruz.

  • Cotour

    Gary;

    Trust me, they are all related, and we are all traumatized by politics and that is in many ways by design.

  • Andrew_W

    Correction: I would NOTdescribe “progressivism” as an ideology, it’s just the opposite of conservatism.

  • Garry

    Cotour, perhaps at some level you’re correct, but I don’t take politics or its consequences personally, and therapy is very personal by its nature.

    I find that those who take politics (or even political arguments) personally tend to base their judgment, words, and actions too much on emotion, which is why most online discussions turn into flame wars.

  • Cotour

    I think a better and more correct word to use related to the subject of discussing Politics is Seriously, instead of the word Personally. The distinction is important. Discussing politics can become personal or Subjective but you can not properly communicate unless you can tend to remain Serious or Objective. So you must train yourself especially in this internet environment to do so and there in is also a discipline and a therapy.

    And this goes to the many times that I have pointed out the necessity of being able to understand the difference between Objective and Subjective and when you are being one or the other and when it is appropriate to be one or the other.

    So while therapy is personal and politics can be emotional we must attempt to understand them objectively in order to make sense of it all or then we are just mired in minutia and just go around in circles. And that is what is essential to the political class who attempt to control us all. (With the best of intentions in mind of course, and we all know where that leads to)

  • Commodude

    Andrew, remove the House from the equation. There are fence jumpers on almost every issue on both sides due to the nature of how house districts are constructed.

    When was the last time a Democrat Senator crossed over on any issue of real importance, and what was their standing in the party after the fact?

  • Edward

    I doubt everyone here thinks I’m a leftist, I’ve commented on several posts and I support the typical Classical liberal/Libertarian position on most issues.

    New Zealand version, yes, but not American version. You give yourself away when you write things such as: “and by focusing on everything Constitution, as if it’s the word of GOD (boy – oh – boy, could I start drawing parallels with other religious fanatics here) you’ve alienated a large proportion of the population, so they don’t support your candidates, so you lose.

    Clearly, what your version of Classical liberal/Libertarian tells you is different than the rest of the world and the rest of everyone here. Constitutions, by their very definition, are the supreme law of the land. The US Constitution actually declares itself so. You mock us for treating the US Constitution as law, but to treat the Constitution otherwise, as your comment suggests we do, tells us that you ,like our left, do not put much store in the law.

    Your suggestion results in a nation of men, where government rewards friends and punishes enemies, rather than a nation of laws, where the law applies equally to all, including presidents and former Secretaries of State. The New Zealand right wing Classical Liberals and Libertarians may put little store in the law, but groups with these same labels in the US insist that the law applies to all, that we are a nation of laws.

    I have explained this to you on multiple occasions, but you fail to learn the difference between US right and the New Zealand right. Either you are slow to learn or you are tolling for replies by pretending to be.

    I continually try to suggest that you do a better job of comprehending what you read so that you do not ask questions that are explained in Robert’s original post (https://behindtheblack.com/behind-the-black/trump-take-the-guns-first-go-through-due-process-second/#comment-1043092 ), fail to take our cultural differences into account, or otherwise say the wrong thing for your audience, because when you do these types of things you do not present a good argument.

    there’s diversity of opinion in both left and right politics” … “The Republican party has several factions

    But the Democrat Party does not have several factions. They lack diversity of opinion.

    Maybe in New Zealand the left has diversity of opinion, but not here in the US. Robert has posted many articles that show US leftists must toe the line of the time or be shunned. Professors at colleges are learning this from their students, these days; leftist professors are now being shouted down in the hallways for deviating from the only acceptable line, because they toe the old line. Right wing students complain that when their papers diverge from their professors’ political opinions they get lower grades or even embarrassed by the professor in class. There are several YouTube videos that show today’s students toeing the line on the most ridiculous points, such as whether a person can be a 6’4” black man when she obviously is not. As commenters on this site have said, it is the actions that count, and those actions are intended by the American left to drive the opinions to be uniform leftist opinions.

    Those poor students are being peer pressured into changing their opinions, and so are those poor professors.

    and you don’t have to search very hard on this blog to find such smears by the blog owner and members of the in-crowd here targeting RINO’s or other Conservatives for not being conservative enough.<

    Demonstrating your ignorance as to what a RINO is and assuming that non-conservatives are in fact conservatives. Clearly, you did not watch the Bill Whittle video series I pointed to a few weeks ago explaining what conservatives believe – US conservatives, that is.

    It is interesting that you, a frequent commenter and self-proclaimed right winger, do not consider yourself a member of the “in-crowd” here. Wouldn’t a fellow conservative, although one who has a different viewpoint of conservatism, consider himself a member of the in-crowd, just one with an alternate opinion? Instead, you consider yourself not as a member of the in-crowd, because you are not conservative in the American sense.

    Notice that several of us have differing ranges of conservative ideas, but we only argue vociferously with those who are (American) progressive or (American) modern liberal, such as you.

    It is you who do not pay close attention to alternate viewpoints. You are the one afraid to get alternate ideas into your head. Even when they are ideas that have worked historically.

    As I write this, there are two conservatives next to me discussing and arguing over differences in conservatism. They have diverse opinions, but are not shouting each other down nor are they threatening to shun each other. Discussion over; now they are trying to open a balky JPEG file.

    There are commenters here that I read more carefully than others, because I think some are far more astute than others.

    Translation: you pay attention only to those whose opinions more closely match your own, proving my point about the lack of diversity of opinion from the left (American left, New Zealand right).

    I’ve made a couple of points here recently that no-one has disputed or replied to me on:

    1) To reply to every single point that you make would mean that we would have to write extremely long – and futile – replies. Otherwise you would pay closer attention to my writings and reply to each and every point that I have made until your replies are too long, too.

    2) I have countered each of the points that followed that comment, but in ways that are just too subtle for you to understand. Sorry for the assumption on my part, but I thought you would understand. If you wish, I will write to you at a lower grade level, but I may have to write even longer replies in order to explain myself at your level, which may defeat the purpose, since you do not carefully read the replies that disagree with your viewpoint – are not what you consider astute.

    When there was slavery it was the conservatives of the time who fought to retain it.

    Are you kidding us? It was the Republicans who fought (literally) to end slavery — which the totalitarian King George insisted we keep. Once again, you make assumptions as to what US conservatism is then you draw the wrong conclusions. Maybe conservatives in New Zealand are all in favor of slavery, but not the ones here. Amazingly, you insist that you are a New Zealand conservative.

    Slavery was not widely practiced in the North, so the Northerners were being much more conservative than you think.

    As this reply gets longer, are you still with me, Andrew_W? Are you trying a little harder to comprehend what I am saying, or am I wasting our time as, wayne fears he has done, with my lack of agreement with you – my lack of what you consider to be astuteness?

  • David

    Mr. Zimmerman, you said to me “It appears I might have presented you with some facts you did not wish to digest…you choose to run away. Ah, the coming dark age.”

    My comment to you on the other thread earlier today was a simple warm thank you for your reply and making time to reply to me. My comment to Contour on this thread earlier today was a simple statement saying I was retiring from political discussion here and a warm wish to be well to all. I placed the reason for this on my shoulders alone saying it was not anyone’s fault or responsibility and indicates again for the 3rd or 4th time recently, I simply find typing difficult verses the ease of oral conversation. That’s far far far from being afraid of anything, choosing not to do extensive research or choosing intellectual ignorant bliss.

    What a small man you are not to see that.

  • Cotour

    Too bad, David, like I stated earlier, you seem a reasonable and measured person, thank you for the kind words.

    All the best to you.

    Maybe you will continue to read and weigh in now and then.

  • David: Call me what you like. In my life I have seen this happen so many times I’ve lost count. When I present some facts that contradict what others believe, rather than reconsider their position, they flee, often calling me names as they go. In the magazine and book field, this sometimes has been accompanied with attempts to either silence me, or do me personal harm. Until the coming of the ebook, I had to fight to get every book I ever wrote published, merely because my editors almost routinely disagreed with my conclusions and wanted me to change them.

    In earlier posts you made it clear you did not believe the FBI and DOJ could be corrupt. If you have reconsidered, it would not have taken much to say so. It thus seemed quite reasonable to me, based on extensive experience, to caulk up your decision to leave to a refusal to face the facts. If I was wrong, I am sorry. At the same time, if you have reconsidered, the gracious thing to do would have been to say so.

    And if you haven’t reconsidered, even after being presented with a lot of damning facts, and are not willing to deal with those facts in a rational discussion, than my conclusions about you remain justified.

  • David: I also find it strange that you replied to my comment and have continued this discussion in this thread, rather in the thread to which it applies.

  • Andrew_W

    Edward: “Clearly, what your version of Classical liberal/Libertarian tells you is different than the rest of the world and the rest of everyone here. Constitutions, by their very definition, are the supreme law of the land.

    I made a small but important error in the comment that you quote, I allowed you room to claim that I was suggesting the Constitution could be ignored. I should have emphasized how US Conservatives grasp onto the Constitution as it now stands as immutable. Obviously, as you point out, is the supreme law of the land, but there is nothing leftist or rightest par se in suggesting that it could or should be amended, but, as I’ve suggested it would almost certainly be contrary to Conservative (as opposed to right wing) politics to suggest further amendments which by their nature would be anti-conservative.

    New Zealand version, yes, but not American version.

    I have to agree with you there, the US right is today overwhelmingly Conservative right, the right in NZ is more Classical Liberal right, our right looks forward, yours looks back (Sorry, couldn’t resist).

    Your suggestion results in a nation of men, where government rewards friends and punishes enemies, rather than a nation of laws, where the law applies equally to all, including presidents and former Secretaries of State.

    No, you’re building a strawman there, just because I see the US conservative right as clinging to an outdated Constitution does not mean that I think that government shouldn’t be by laws, My position is only that the laws should be amendable and not placed above the power of the people to advocate for their amendment where the people see that as necessary.

    But the Democrat Party does not have several factions. They lack diversity of opinion.

    That’s just a silly claim, when you’re on the inside you can always see the diversity amongst your peers, it’s when you look at a group from the outside, especially one that you’re antagonistic towards, that they all look the same to you. It should be obvious to anyone who doesn’t have their head in the sand that in their Presidential candidates (as one example) the Democrat Party demonstrated plenty of diversity.

    Maybe in New Zealand the left has diversity of opinion, but not here in the US. Robert has posted many articles that show US leftists must toe the line of the time or be shunned.

    Except that voting patterns in the house don’t show that.

    Demonstrating your ignorance as to what a RINO is and assuming that non-conservatives are in fact conservatives.

    Now here we have an interesting issue, your words suggest that the Republican Party is a Conservative party rather than a right wing party. That you believe that those holding right wing perspectives other than conservatism are not genuine Republicans. But, the Republican party in the past has been much more of a Classical Liberal party, a party that put right wing issues ahead of the fight against those advocating change, the Republican Party was once a party that was brave enough to embrace change, today with its lack of a clear ideological direction, fighting only to resist change, fighting above all else for yesterday, it’s just a sad shadow of a party that once stood for something other than getting into power – to then do next to nothing.

    I did watch the Bill Whittle video, and I’ve watched his videos in the past when Conservatives have suggested them to me, Whittle is a tedious bore who has probably never had an original thought in his life.

    It is interesting that you, a frequent commenter and self-proclaimed right winger, do not consider yourself a member of the “in-crowd” here. Wouldn’t a fellow conservative, although one who has a different viewpoint of conservatism, consider himself a member of the in-crowd, just one with an alternate opinion? Instead, you consider yourself not as a member of the in-crowd, because you are not conservative in the American sense.

    I’m not a Conservative in any sense, and once again you demonstrate your inability to understand the difference between being truly of the right and just a conservative. Here’s another example of someone who was not a Conservative: Milton Friedman, he’s someone I hold in high esteem – because he was both right wing and not a Conservative, He said that he was a libertarian philosophically, but a member of the U.S. Republican Party for the sake of “expediency” (“I am a libertarian with a small ‘l’ and a Republican with a capital ‘R.’ And I am a Republican with a capital ‘R’ on grounds of expediency, not on principle.”) But, he said, “I think the term classical liberal is also equally applicable.”

    So by your definition Milton Friedman was a RINO.

    Translation: you pay attention only to those whose opinions more closely match your own, proving my point about the lack of diversity of opinion from the left (American left, New Zealand right).

    Not how I see it. The people I’m referring to state their opinion – and then support that opinion with reasoned arguments, they don’t endevour to win arguments by belittling people for having opinions different from their own, I confess that I regrettably too often don’t measure up to the standards they set.

    Otherwise you would pay closer attention to my writings and reply to each and every point that I have made until your replies are too long, too.

    Your replies didn’t address my points – though I’m sure you believe they did.

    Are you kidding us? It was the Republicans who fought (literally) to end slavery — which the totalitarian King George insisted we keep.

    As I said above, the Republican party was once primarily a party of the right rather than primarily a conservative party. . . and are you blaming King George III for the sovereign nation of the USA retaining slavery for nearly 100 years after gaining independence? Really??

    Amazingly, you insist that you are a New Zealand conservative.

    I’m sure I’ve previously (prior to this comment) made the point that I’m not a Conservative, but in case you missed it: I’m not a conservative. Being on the right often means not being a Conservative because Conservatives often put retaining how things are now ahead of true right wing policies.

    Slavery was not widely practiced in the North, so the Northerners were being much more conservative than you think.

    Thanks for making a useful observation, I still think the nature of mainstream Republican politics has moved from a right wing ideological position to a largely ideology free conservative position. And that doesn’t mean I think better things can be said of the Democrat party, I’m not sure if there’s an ideological label that could be honestly fit to them either, perhaps Social Democrats – if that’s an ideology.

    Remember, when you try to stick a label on me think Milton Friedman, he’s probably the closest easily recognized name that fits.

  • Commodude

    ” just because I see the US conservative right as clinging to an outdated Constitution does not mean that I think that government shouldn’t be by laws”

    That statement in and of itself illustrates how little you understand both the history of the United States and the bedrock of the conservative movement in the country. Much blood has been shed in defense of that “outdated document”, and to refer to it as such is an absolute insult to conservatives.

    The Constitution is NOT outdated, and contains within the text the means for change. If the change cannot be affected by the means in the document, then the supermajority needed for change doesn’t exist.

  • Andrew_W

    You’re right Commodude, a poor choice of words on my part. Most of the Constitution is more an expression of good and timeless principles. I still think though that many Americans treat it too religiously.

  • Commodude

    We don’t treat it religiously. What is anathema to the right is the politicization of the courts and law. Instead of working within the bounds of the document the left has perverted the court system to affect change through litigation and mob movements rather than votes, legislation and debate.

  • wayne

    Commodude-
    Most excellent stuff!

    Andrew_W:
    There was a time not too long ago, when a Constitutional Amendment was required to outlaw Alcohol in the United States, an another one was required to reverse it 13 years later.
    Now, ANY substance, thing, or action, can be banned through Administrative action alone. (And I can even be ordered to buy a Product I don’t want (health insurance) and be thrown in jail for refusing to do so.)
    We are a long, long way from following OEM specifications, and the result is tyranny, plain and simple.
    (We have a Senate, that no longer serves any purpose, due to the 17th Amendment.)

    Tangentially– I’m sorta sick of being lectured to by foreigners with an appalling lack of understanding of how this Country was designed to work.

    “I know you don’t want to hear me crying,
    An I know you don’t want to hear me deny.
    That your satisfaction lies in your illusions,
    But your delusions are yours an not mine.

    We take for granted that we know the whole story…
    We judge a book by it’s cover,
    And read what we want,
    Between selected lines….
    Don’t hail me,
    An don’t idolize the ink
    Or I’ve failed in my attentions.
    Can you find the missing link?
    Your only validation is in living your own life,
    Vicarious existence is a ________ waste of time.
    So I send this song to the offended,
    I said what I meant and I’ve never pretended,
    As so many others do intending just to please.”

    Guns-n-Roses

  • Andrew_W

    Wayne, you and Commodude make valid points and I agree I’ve overstepped the mark in the part of my comment that you’ve taken issue with.

    The below is just as spit-balling, thinking aloud, and can be ignored unless you’re really into how governance structures can affect political stability.

    I still think that there’s real political danger for a political faction to stand behind an article of the Constitution until their opponents can raise the super-majority to amend that article, because at that point you could have a very large percentage of the population against you, a situation that could damage the recalcitrant party across wider electoral issues, and when the super-majority is achieved, it could lead to a dramatic swing of the political pendulum on the relevant issue.

    The requirement for a super-majority could also hold up a necessary reform. But given the eventuality of such a situation arising it should not be a question of assigning blame to the parties involved, they would just be following the natural course for them set out by the rules. There is obviously the argument that the super-majority requirement increases stability, but humans don’t naturally plunge for great change if they perceive a risk in that change anyway.

    The above can be taken in general terms and not a specific reference to the US but rather to any country that has a Constitutional requirement for a super-majority to change Constitutional legislation.

    In 1993 NZ revamped its electoral system, it was done via popular referendum, the result was a 54% to 46% vote in favor of replacing the old FPP system with an MMP system. That was in my opinion a good move that increased the user-friendliness of our system, I doubt such a change to the electoral system could happen in a nation requiring a super-majority vote until the need became very urgent.

  • wayne

    Andrew_W
    appreciate your acknowledgement. no time to reply coherently, way past my bedtime.

    I am heavily involved in this:
    https://conventionofstates.com/

    There are 2 methods to amend our Constitution;
    -proposed by the (Federal) legislature and then ratified by the Sates.
    or, an Article 5 Convention of States; States call a meeting, propose the amendment’s, then they ratify.
    The first method has historically been used exclusively.
    The 2nd method has not been used, but it is literally the tyranny escape hatch method– it totally cuts out the Federal Government.

    –The separate & sovereign States of the Union, created the Federal Government.
    The Federal Government is supposed to work for the States, not the other way around.
    –Things went totally off the rails with the adoption of the 16th & 17th Amendment’s. (income Tax and direct election of Federal Senators)
    Senators are supposed to be accountable to their respective State Legislature, they are supposed to be the check on the popularly elected House of Reps, which are close to the people.
    “Income Tax” as we know it in the USA today, was totally unconstitutional until the 16th amendment granted the power of the Federal Government to collect taxes “on income without apportioning it among the states,” as was specified in the OEM specs.
    –Those two “progressive era” amendment’s, almost completely lurched us far afield from our historic way of life.
    (One has to truly appreciate & understand those two events, to fully understand the transformation our Country underwent in the last century.)
    gots-to-go!

  • Cotour

    I will just pick and choose here:

    “No, you’re building a strawman there, just because I see the US conservative right as clinging to an outdated Constitution does not mean that I think that government shouldn’t be by laws, My position is only that the laws should be amendable and not placed above the power of the people to advocate for their amendment where the people see that as necessary.”

    Andrew W, your statement above will have more validity when the nature of man related to power and governance is no longer and has verifiably changed through evolution. The Founders simply created the counter balance to the nature of human beings as they understood the subject through their own experience and their understanding of history related to power and governance. Homo Sapien Sapien I believe is about 100 thousand to 30 thousand years old or so (?). We are what we are and to insist that we are not is just a soft way of dealing with reality, human being WILL abuse power when they become empowered, period.

    If and when the American Constitution is allowed to be casually modified, specifically related to the first 10 amendments, then that is the day that emotion (Leftist doctrine) high jacks the Constitution and logic and reason is thrown out the window and Government usurps the power identified as being the peoples right upon birth.

    If that is the way that New Zealand chooses to go because they / you do not see the validity of the American Founders observations and codified instructions for free people then I wish you good luck. I will stick with what I have come to intimately understand as being as clear and true related to the subject at hand as possible. warts and all.

  • Cotour

    Andrew W:

    Coming to a Mosque near you?

    http://www.foxnews.com/world/2018/03/02/indonesian-christians-flogged-outside-mosque-for-violating-sharia-law.html

    This and things like it are what Leftist doctrine welcomes into their thinking and their country.

  • Cotour

    For David and others: Understanding Trump on “Gun Control” or anything else:

    http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/376717-trump-tariffs-will-come-off-if-mexico-canada-sign-new-fair-nafta-deal

    Trump, in this example as I have pointed out previously, creates leverage and a sledge hammer out of threats I.E. nothing, gets peoples attention, and then begins a new direction in negotiations. Trumps techniques are simple and effective and that is why he employs them. No politician understands this technique nor would employ them because they are not after progress and forward movement but middle ground, in other words, the status quo.

  • Andrew_W

    Cotour, I addressed your March 5, 2018 at 9:08 am comment above.

    The interesting thing in your March 5, 2018 at 9:20 am comment is that you describe a flogging in Indonesia as leftist doctrine. I’ve searched and search but I can’t find anything that relates that matter to leftist doctrine.

    They use caning as a punishment for a wide range of offences in Singapore, where it’s a legacy of the old British rule. Personally I think we need to see more of it rather than the frankly idiotic use of imprisonment as a form of punishment in which we send criminals to a boarding school to mix with other criminals learning how to improve their criminal techniques, all at vast expense to the taxpayer.

    I suppose if in America leftism is believing that the taxpayer should be made to pay for an expensive penal system that just holds the criminals for a while before releasing them into society where they’re most likely to re-offend, never really providing a good disincentive to their offending in the first place, then I suppose by US standards I am indeed a leftist, by international standards though I think that puts me on the right.

  • Cotour

    My prime point was really about the acceptance by Liberal or leftist governments, like the Democrat party in America will ultimately support, as a philosophy of the religious practices and forced acceptance of THEIR rules of law and culture, rather than the punishment itself. The American Democrat party is no longer an American citizen interested political party, they have moved left and will drive further Left because they a by evidence now lead by full blood Leftists.

    I suppose that it might be an interesting experiment where the offender might be able to choose between which punishment they would prefer, a caning or imprisonment.

    A notice to you : https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/5727150/china-military-news-power-budget-spending-weapons/

    They are coming, right in your neighborhood. Do you think that the Chinese will ask you what kind of “Democracy” or flavor of “Liberalism” you prefer? What resources is NZ rich in? That will be the tell about how quickly they will be there.

  • Andrew_W

    I suppose that it might be an interesting experiment where the offender might be able to choose between which punishment they would prefer, a caning or imprisonment.

    The article you link to states: Around 98% of Banda Aceh’s population are Muslims subject to sharia law, but the other portion, Christians and other non-Muslims, when accused of violating both national and religious laws can choose to be prosecuted under either system, often opting for a flogging to avoid a lengthy, costly court process and jail time.

    They are coming, right in your neighborhood. Do you think that the Chinese will ask you what kind of “Democracy” or flavor of “Liberalism” you prefer? What resources is NZ rich in? That will be the tell about how quickly they will be there.

    It’s a long way from China increasing its military spending to China doing what the Japanese did in the early 1930’s. China already has access to NZ’s resources, and to US resources, we and you have access to their resources, everyone is better off accessing resources via trade, although it can’t be denied that their are left wing idiots about that think that restricting trade is economically beneficial.

  • Edward

    Andrew_W,
    You wrote: “No, you’re building a strawman there

    It is not a straw man in the poorly worded context of your comment. It would have been a straw man if your comment had said what you meant. Please let me know when you are able to choose your words better.

    That’s just a silly claim, when you’re on the inside you can always see the diversity amongst your peers

    This is correct, and in the American left, they quash that diversity with harsh lecturing as to the latest acceptable, politically correct opinion and with name calling and shunning of those who refuse to comply. That is what I said with my explanation of what happens to students and even to professors. Don’t you pay any attention to what we Americans write on this site or to Robert’s links?

    We tell you what it is like here, yet you continue to project your country’s attitudes and policies upon America.

    Then you have the audacity to brag about your latest political system, in place for a mere quarter century, suggesting that is better than our Constitution, which has rocked the world for more than two centuries and inspired many failed attempts at replication — failed because those who have tried did not understand it. The US Constitution puts too much power into the hands of We the People and not enough power into the hands of those who wish to rule their own countries rather than allow for the self governance that we are losing, here in America, such as tyrannically taking guns first, then applying due process after it is too late.

    Then we get into these silly-[A-word] discussions about something other than the topic at hand, because you fail to understand what the rest of us are talking about, and because you have trouble writing a well worded, coherent comment.

    How frustrating.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *