Monday, December 22, 2014

The Line Between Civilization and Mayhem

The line between civilization and mayhem is being tested every day lately:
But this double assassination is also a moment of clarity about how thin the line in any society is between order and anarchy. America is full of Brinsleys who no longer abide the norms of civilized behavior, if they even know what those norms are. They need but the slightest excuse to take justice into their own hands and go on a rampage.

Especially in urban America, the police walk that line between civilization and mayhem every day. Yet since the Garner and Brown episodes, the progressive leaders in New York and Washington have talked and behaved as if the police are society’s main problem.

They have honored with joint public appearances and private meetings such racial agitators as Al Sharpton who want to stop the “broken windows” policing that has done so much to reduce crime in poor minority neighborhoods. Mr. Holder has sent federal agents to second-guess grand juries and “reform” local police as if he assumes these police chiefs and prosecutors are biased. The New York City Council staged a “die-in” as fallen victims of police.

And progressives have failed to denounce protestors who have disrupted civic life, rampaged through stores, and even assaulted police who tried to arrest law-breakers. All of this has contributed to a public climate of suspicion and hate against police in which a man like Ismaaiyl Brinsley can in his deranged mind think it is justified to stalk and execute two cops on the beat.

New York’s police certainly believe this, as they turned their backs on Mr. de Blasio in an astonishing show of contempt when the mayor visited the hospital where the slain officers were taken. This is what happens when a mayor who is responsible for public order treats Al Sharpton with more respect than he does his own police force. The progressive campaign against police must stop before it has even uglier consequences.
A war between the police and urban blacks is not something that anybody could really want. A return to the chaos of urban America 1965-1979 is really not such a good idea.

So it might be wise for Holder, Obama, de Blasio, and Sharpton to shut up on all of this stuff and quit inciting people -- ostensibly in support of disaffected urban black youths -- to loot, destroy, and murder. But we all know they won't, even though that is a path guaranteed to lead to more disaffected urban black youths dying at the hands of other disaffected urban black youths, as we already see today.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Compare and contrast, PBS and Ferguson edition

Recently PBS put together a chart to be helpful to those too busy -- or too dim-witted -- to actually read and process the Ferguson grand jury testimony.

It helpfully explained that Michael Brown was, of course, murdered in cold blood while surrendering. Of course. Look at the chart - it's right there in the column entitled "Did MB put his hands up when fired upon?". Facts, bro.

Just glance quickly at a table of unknown veracity, and you are an instant expert on a case that took months and involved 60 witnesses!

Oddly enough, other summaries of the testimony that I read indicated that a certain segment of the witness testimony -- those who testified that "MB" was surrendering -- were deemed untrustworthy, since the forensic and autopsy evidence fully contradicted their version of events. The witnesses that corroborated Officer Wilson's story, however, told versions that matched the forensic and autopsy evidence.

Which seems pretty important, eh?

Later I encountered another chart that seems to pretty much pull the plug on the PBS chart:

Now I have not read the testimony yet either, so caveat emptor on this. Those who want to really know what they're talking about are pretty much required to read a lot about it. Relying on tables compiled by the media, or by others you might not necessarily be able to trust, is a bad idea.

Detail does complicate our lives, but it also informs us. It keeps us from turning into drooling morons who know nothing of any value except what others tell us to think. If you're too busy to read the testimony, but you have time to spend texting and trolling Facebook, you might want to quit pretending that your opinions on this matter are worth a bucket of warm spit.

Anyway, compare and contrast the tables yourself, but remember that people who filter out and condense details into neatly-compartmentalized story lines are making a lot of decisions on what is important to the story on your behalf. They might not be all that careful, or objective, and to the extent they remove or obscure key details, you, the consumer of that information, pay the price.

The media has spent decades trying to dumb down America - don't help them.

via Second City Cop

Friday, December 05, 2014

Mark Levin says to states: "take your power back" from "runaway" Obama
The building national movement for a constitutional convention of states to block President Obama’s executive orders got a huge boost Thursday when leading advocate Mark Levin urged state lawmakers to throttle all of Washington, including Republicans.

“Take your power back,” he demanded of the hundreds of lawmakers attending the American Legislative Exchange Council convention on Capitol Hill. “You are the last line of defense of liberty.”
Levin got star billing because a focus of the winter meeting of the limited government group is pushing for a convention of states, a project of the Citizens for Self-Governance, who sponsored the top talk show host who recently wrote a book laying out constitutional amendments the nation should consider. The process is offered in Article V of the Constitution.

He described a nation that is morphing into a “post-constitutional” crisis where state legislatures are “irrelevant,” and the president and Congress do whatever they want, and nobody in Washington provides checks and balances.

“We have a president of the United States who says, ‘Hey, Congress won’t act. I will.’ Excuse me? Well what’s that? Sounds like a runaway convention to me,” he said.

Ditto for Republicans. “Throw out the establishment Republicans and others who are stopping you from doing what you need to do,” Levin urged.
This does seem like a natural next step for those who value and defend liberty. Washington sure as hell doesn't. Exactly the opposite, in fact.

via Instapundit