The WSJ is run by a pack of cowards.

They aren’t accepting comments on this article.

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam said he would call a special legislative session to address gun control after a gunman killed 12 people at a Virginia Beach government building on Friday.

Mr. Northam, an embattled Democrat who has held on to office after a racist photo from his medical-school yearbook re-emerged in February, called Tuesday for sweeping changes, including universal background checks and expanding local authority to regulate firearms, such as in government buildings.

“I will be asking for votes and laws, not thoughts and prayers,” the governor said at a news conference. He hopes to convene the special session by the end of June, his spokeswoman said.

As Glenn Reynolds memorably said many years ago, in the wake of Sandy Hook,

“When people say things like ‘don’t let this moment pass without acting on gun control,’ what they’re really saying is our arguments are so unpersuasive that they can only succeed when people aren’t thinking clearly.

And as usual, that’s exactly what’s going on here.  The bottom line, Mr. Northam, is you don’t need new gun laws, you need to enforce the gun laws you already have.

And let’s talk for a moment about “silencers”, since everyone has their panties in a knot because the jerk used one. Silencers aren’t. They don’t work the way you think they do, if the only place you’ve ever seen them used is in Hollywood films. That’s why they’re actually called “suppressors”, not “silencers.” The idea is to suppress enough of the bang to bring it down to a reasonable level…kind of like putting a muffler on your car.

And moreover, y’know, you can’t walk into a gun store and walk out with a suppressor. In some states you can’t even buy one. They’re designated Class III arms — just like full-auto machine guns. To buy one, you have to apply for BATFE approval and, once approved (which is not “same-day” like a 4473 usually is), you have to register the suppressor’s serial number with BATFE. And you’re not done, because most legal experts recommend setting up a trust for the purpose of registering the suppressor. That costs money. And then, so does the tax stamp you have to buy from the BATFE for each and every suppressor you register — $200 each.*

So this dude either stole that suppressor, or he bought it legally and went through a maze of requirements to get it. Or he built one in his garage out of an old oil filter or suchlike, in which case he’s as much of a federal felon as if he’d stolen a manufactured one.  How much more gun law do you need, Mr. Northam?

FWIW here’s all the BS you have to go through to buy a suppressor — and I’d own them for my guns simply to save my hearing, if it wasn’t such an expensive, Byzantine process.

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* I was reminded by a Facebook friend that said tax stamp can take 6 months or more to receive AFTER you apply and pay for it.

Destroying our history to save our country … doesn’t work.

The City of Dallas has declared its statue of Robert E. Lee — removed from a city park two years ago — as “surplus property” and is putting it up for sale.

To say that this is ridiculously stupid is to treat the issue with kindness and charity.

You may call Lee and the rest of the leaders of the Southern Confederacy traitors (and many under-educated Americans do), but the fact is that none of them were ever tried as traitors, and indeed, all but one of them accepted amnesty and was eventually restored to citizenship.  The same is true clear down to the soldiers in the trenches — anyone who applied for amnesty got his citizenship back.

In the end, not treating anyone but Jefferson Davis as a war criminal (and that was mostly his own fault, but a strong case can be made that Davis was mentally disturbed during at least the last year of the war, and then for the rest of his life) is what glued the country back together.

Now in our modern day, we see those who would tear the country down destroying monuments to the men who, probably more than anyone else, kept things from flying apart after Appomattox. They were formidable and honorable soldiers, but they also knew when they were licked, and they laid down their arms without a lot of fanfare. And when the Army of Northern Virginia paraded through the Union lines to lay down their arms, they were saluted by the Union troops, and in turn saluted back. Thus the healing began.

Lee himself urged many, many butternut soldiers, both in person and in writing, to sign the amnesty forms and get their citizenship back. His own would have been restored had it not been for Secretary of State William Henry Seward, one of the biggest jackasses in Lincoln’s cabinet short of Edwin M. Stanton. Instead, it had to be restored posthumously in 1974 by vote of Congress, after someone discovered in the National Archives Lee’s amnesty form that had been hidden away by Seward after he received it.

If you have not studied the Civil War and its aftermath, you probably have no idea how many soldiers pleaded with Lee to disappear with them into the mountains to continue the resistance against the Federals — and the fact that he did not, and indeed scolded them for even considering such a doomed pursuit, is another mark in his favor. To tear down his monuments is to deny his importance to our history, regardless of his actions in the field between April 1861 and April 1865.  The same is true of the monuments raised to other great men of the Civil War, including some like Major General George H. Thomas, who fought for the Union, but is now denigrated because his family in Virginia owned slaves.

Full disclosure: I’m a Hoosier, born and bred. Members of my family fought on both sides. It doesn’t matter because it ended over a century and a half ago, with the Union restored and slavery ended. That being said, I believe in my heart that the South was correct about States’ Rights, and we see the result of their defeat on that subject today in our massively expanded Federal Government, which operates far beyond the pale of what was agreed upon in Philadelphia during that hot summer of 1787.

You really want to tear the country apart? Keep tearing down our history. That will do it just fine.

Pelosi stumbles

As Roger Simon puts it, “The re-election of Donald Trump will be dated from the evening of May 23, 2019.”

It would have happened sooner or later, but Nancy Pelosi’s out-of-control behavior—accusing Trump of a cover-up before meeting with him (sheesh), demanding his family stage an intervention (double sheesh), etc.—clearly forced the president finally to issue a memo giving Attorney General Barr authority to declassify the 2016 campaign surveillance documents. (He undoubtedly had it in his hip pocket for a while.)

Unlike Simon, who himself seems to waffle a bit on the subject, I don’t think Trump was “forced” to do this at all.  He’s said all along he was going to declassify the material.  I think he did have this memo in his hip pocket for awhile, but I also think he was waiting for the best (for the Democrats, the worst) possible time to issue it.

And Pelosi just could not keep her yap shut and play nice with the President while her underlings, dripping saliva from their slack mouths like rabid dogs, continue to press for impeachment where there is no impeachable offense.  Nope.  The Trump Derangement Syndrome is strong with this one.  So you want to play cover-up games, Madame Speaker?  Try covering this up once it’s revealed to the public in all of its ugly glory.  And either way Simon wants to slice it — forced or unforced — he still ends up with this:

Result: game changer. The re-election of Donald Trump will be dated from the evening of May 23, 2019. And the supposedly politically-savvy Ms. Pelosi will be marked down as the instigator.

Yeah, I know I already put that up top.  I’m savoring it, it’s my blog, and fuck you if you don’t like me repeating it.

I know there are a lot of folks out there even on the GOP side who pooh-pooh the idea that Donald Trump is playing 4D intergalactic chess while the Democrats and everyone else who opposes him are playing checkers.  As I keep repeating, Donald Trump is not a politician.  He’s a businessman.  He did not get where he is today without understanding the elements of how a business deal works, and how you get to the deal not only through negotiation but also by grandstanding and brinkmanship.  You call people belittling names and talk about their poor levels of cognition.  You understand that a trade war with a country that sells us a lot of stuff but doesn’t buy nearly as much in return* can be won with tariffs (something the Wall Street Journal editorial board doesn’t seem to understand).  You just keep slugging and slugging and slugging until the other guy screams “Uncle!”

And that’s why Donald Trump is playing at troll level Intergalactic Grand Master when it comes to dealing with politicians both domestic and foreign.  And they do not understand how to fight back, or even how to defend themselves against that sort of attack, because “nobody in government does that!”

Donald Trump does.  We can’t spare this man.  He fights.

And I would not have said that even three years ago.

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* Please don’t tell me how much corn and soy China buys from US farmers, and how tariffs are going to kill the small family farmer.  The Chinese can threaten all day to stop buying food from us, but only if they want famine in their country.  Farmers are planners, all over the world, and you can’t simply walk over to another country and say, “We want to buy this year’s soybean crop from you,” when that soybean crop was already sold two years ago to someone else.  China is beginning to discover to its dismay the realities of the market, and regardless of tariffs, they’ll still buy US soybeans and corn, and pork, and all kinds of other foodstuffs, because they simply won’t be able to buy them anywhere else.  Oh, and if China starts a war with the West?  Hope they have lots of rations stuffed away, because they can’t even begin to feed their own people if their western partners shut off the supply.  Japan found that out at the end of WWII.  The Brits would have been in that sort of trouble throughout WWII if it hadn’t been for US convoys shipping them food (one of the reasons we had to ration food during the war), and the Brits were still rationing food until 1954, nine years after the war ended, and fourteen years after rationing started in 1940.  So don’t tell me the Chinese can just buy their food elsewhere.  They can’t even nuke us into submission and come and take it from us, unless they want to die from eating irradiated food.

All you GoT fans out there…

…were you REALLY surprised when HBO fucked the end of the series the way they did?

Author can’t even write the last two books.

Hands over the show to the screenwriters, with some notes that might or might not be how he really would have written the books.  (No author ever actually knows how books are going to come out until they’re finished and off to the printer.  And if they do, it’s because they’re formula writers.)

HBO has not one but two spinoff series that they’re itching to get started.

GoT is in the way and needs to be killed with an axe…so they used a dragon.

Will I ever buy anything else George RR Martin writes?  Doubtful.  If he couldn’t arse himself to write one book, OK, two books because he’s incapable of self-editing, to finish the series, then fuck him.  There are better things to read.

Fifth Anniversary

I don’t know your heart
I don’t know where to begin
But I could feel you erasing the rivers I’d drawn in

Read the rest of this entry »

Windows 10 report

[Updated; scroll to the end.]

I’ve been updating Windows 7 machines around here to Windows 10 and generally have had good results.*

  • Dell Precision M6700 (main daily work machine):  Had problems at first because the System Reserved partition wasn’t big enough (and was nearly full).  There was extra unused space at the end of the disk; problem being that the System Reserved partition is at the beginning of the disk where I couldn’t expand it.  Found a tool called “MiniTool Partition Wizard” which I used to move things around so the System Reserved partition could be extended.  Voila, once that was done, Windows 10 installed without a hitch.  (I suspect the original System Reserved partition was shrunk to its smaller size when I migrated the OS disk from a spinning disk to a solid-state disk.  But I’m not sure about that.)  This machine is close to six years old but because I’ve been proactive about upgrades (SSD boot drive, increased RAM from shipped 8GB to max 32GB, and it’s an i7 to begin with), it still kicks a fair amount of butt and I have no plans to retire it any time soon.
  • Dell Precision M4300 (old travel laptop from when I had a desktop machine for daily work):  I actually did this one first, as proof of concept that you can actually still upgrade a properly-licensed Windows 7 machine for free using the Get Windows 10 installer.  (See here for more information.)  This upgrade went flawlessly, and the only problem now seems to be that the wireless card occasionally can throw a fit and blue-screen Windows.  I’ve only had that happen once, so crossing fingers that I don’t have to upgrade the wireless card.  (The antenna wires are too short to reach a half-mini card that would replace a full-mini card.)
  • Dell Latitude 2100 (old netbook for odd jobs like running the Q10 text editor): Surprisingly enough, this little machine with an Intel Atom processor and only 2GB RAM upgraded fine.  Very slow to do so, but that was only to be expected.  This was one of two of these little buggers that we have in the house; the other will be upgraded this weekend (it’s my wife’s).**  (These things actually weigh less than my iPad Air 2 in its Otterbox cover, and they have a real keyboard to boot.  Nice restaurant/coffee shop laptop alternative, if you can deal with the tiny screen.)
  • Dell Vostro 14R (N4010) (wife’s old laptop that she still uses for games and such):  This machine hasn’t been upgraded yet, but indications are that it will take the upgrade.  I’ll attempt it this weekend.
  • Dell PowerEdge T30 that doesn’t belong to me; I’m secretary-treasurer of the organization it belongs to, but it lives in my office.  Not ready to upgrade it yet, as it’s still running some legacy applications that I’m not sure are Windows 10 compatible.  This is the only non-laptop Dell machine in the house.  Windows 7 was kind of a bear to install on it, because technically it doesn’t support Windows desktop operating systems, just Windows server operating systems.  Eh.  You can make anything work.

Another machine is an old Frankenbox with an i5 and an ASUS motherboard that upgraded itself one night back in the GWX “here let us force you to upgrade when you’re least expecting it” days, so it’s been running Windows 10 for several years now.  It’s had issues but mostly they are sorted.  One of the problems it had was that it wouldn’t boot if the USB backup drive was connected.  That was solved by disabling boot from USB devices in the BIOS.  This is the machine I use in the radio shack, and it is going to be replaced by something faster one of these days.

Yet another machine is another old Frankenbox with an i5 and an Intel motherboard.  This one won’t upgrade, period.  The i5 processor is too old and isn’t supported by Microsoft; and Intel flatly withdrew support for their old desktop motherboards when Windows 10 came out, so no drivers.  Intel have never supported Windows 10 on those boards (and of course they don’t make motherboards anymore).  This is a shame, because that machine is actually faster than the shack machine.  Oh well.  (I’m giving it to a friend who wants to keep running Windows 7 for a while, so it won’t go to waste.)

Finally, I still have my old Inspiron 600m laptop (32-bit Pentium-M with 4GB RAM) that I bought years ago (like in 2001) for travel purposes.  It still runs XP (so it never talks to the network).  It is apparently barely upgradeable to Windows 7 and as I understand it there are no drivers for anything after that.  I’m not going to waste my time upgrading it to Windows 7, and it’s probably not worth putting Linux on (I did have Fedora Core on it years ago but wiped it and put XP back on it).  So that machine is either going to recycle, or I’ll find a stubborn old ham who still uses XP to take if off my hands.  (Most likely it will go to recycle.)

I’m actually surprised this has gone so easily.  I keep hearing horror stories from people who have upgraded or attempted to upgrade their Windows 7 machines.  I don’t know why I don’t have problems like they do.

I have to say that someone at Microsoft must have actually listened to the focus groups this time.  If Windows 10 decides it can’t install for some reason, it doesn’t simply die and leave you beached with a machine that won’t boot or is half-upgraded; it ROLLS BACK the upgrade and puts you back where you started (and is even apologetic about it).  At least this has been my experience.  YMMV.

You will note, BTW, that all of our laptop machines are Dells.  I have been buying Dells for years because they are solid consumer contenders.  (I don’t care much for their servers but I’m spoiled by HP, whose consumer PCs I wouldn’t touch with a ten-foot Pole, or even a twelve-ounce White Russian, but whose servers are fucking bombproof.)  The names Toshiba and Lenovo are not spoken in this house.  And the only Apple stuff we have are our iPads.  Our Dell laptops just keep running; I’ve only destroyed one, and that was an accidental Diet Pepsi spill right into the keyboard that fried the CPU and the motherboard.  Got home from that trip, found a nearly-identical machine (with a better graphics card) on eBay for less than $400, swapped out the hard drives, and was back up and running again within a week.  Windows 7 never noticed the difference, other than needing to update a couple of drivers.

And that’s why I stick with Dell.

UPDATES:  Monday, May 20:

I didn’t get to the Vostro 14 yet.

I got the other Latitude 2100 updated; it lacked a System Reserved partition altogether, but that didn’t faze the installer, so I guess if you have one, it just has to be large enough for Windows 10 to write things there.  The minimum recommended size seems to be between 400-500MB, which is a tiny sliver out of a terabyte (or even 500GB) drive, all things considered.

I found another machine in the closet that I’d forgotten about; it’s another Atom-powered machine, but it’s a mini-ITX desktop with 4GB RAM.  It also upgraded nicely.  The interesting thing is that the motherboard is an Intel D525MW, suggesting that not ALL Intel motherboards aren’t supported.  On the other hand I think this one is a lot newer than the one I was trying to upgrade that failed.  This machine badly needs to be upgraded with an SSD, and I have an extra Intel 7260HMW wireless AC card I can put in it, too.  Hooray for miniPCIe slots on modern motherboards.

In the process of upgrading these older machines, I’m discovering lots of other things in Windows that can be safely disabled; I will probably make another post about that later.  Obviously I’m also getting rid of all the XBox shite.  There’s no use for it on these machines.  But there are other things that can be removed only by going into Powershell — see this link for example, which includes among other things instructions on how to rid yourself of the pesky XBox junk.

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* There has never been a Windows 8.x machine in this house. Just like there was never a Vista machine or an ME machine in this house.  Windows 11 is going to be a disaster, you know 🙂

** If you try to update one of these, or frankly any small computer/netbook that can’t be upgraded with a decent amount of RAM (at least 8GB is my modern recommendation — RAM is cheap), for $DEITY’s sake, at least turn off Cortana — what a CPU and memory sink, and you don’t need it because search will still work at the machine level.  You can use Google or Bing or DuckDuckGo for Internet search, you don’t need Cortana.

Stupid people doing stupid things

Two separate articles in the WSJ this morning bring the asshattery.

One is on page A2 of the dead tree edition, entitled “Measles Outbreaks Show No Sign of Slowing”.  The last paragraph is idiotic:

Skepticism about vaccines is growing in the U.S., particularly in insular communities, where several measles outbreaks have occurred in recent years.

In what FUCKING world would that make anyone a skeptic about vaccines?  Or keep any but the most stupidly stubborn from allowing that maybe vaccines would be a good idea, since WE ERADICATED MEASLES FROM THE US IN 2000????  What do they think we used to do that?  Witch doctor mumbo jumbo and dancing around bonfires?

Fucking clueless idiots.

Then on page A3, there’s this, entitled “Rising Rents Give Rise to New Lenders”.  Again, the last couple of paragraphs illustrate the stupidity of some people:

Alexander Kaplan, a tech entrepreneur, moved back to New York after years of living abroad.  He had paid roughly $500 a month to live in what he called “the Soho” of Belgrade, Serbia.

“Coming back here I was quite shocked,” said Mr. Kaplan, who rents a studio apartment on Manhattan’s Upper West Side for $2,800 a month.  He borrowed $10,000 last year from a loan startup focusing on young college graduates facing hefty move-in costs.

More asshattery.  You moved to New York City.  To the Upper West Side.  And you think you’re going to get an apartment for $500 a month? Moron.

According to Wikipedia,

Like the Upper East Side, the Upper West Side is an affluent, primarily residential area with many of its residents working in commercial areas of Midtown and Lower Manhattan. … The Upper West Side is considered to be among New York City’s wealthiest neighborhoods.

When I lived in Washington DC for a year in 1995, I had a crappy one-bedroom apartment up in Silver Spring that cost $973/month.  When I moved home to Indy the next year, I got a nice two-bedroom (well, it was really a one-bedroom with a loft which I used for my office) apartment on the north side near my folks’ for $525/month.  (And that same apartment is still only around $600/month over 20 years later.  Neighborhood’s not as nice anymore, though.)

What is perhaps more moronic is that this article is talking about lenders who are lending money to people who can’t afford their rent.  Specifically one person says it’s because her pay is sporadic.  (She’s a model and designer in Hollywood.  Isn’t everyone?  That, or an actor or a writer.  And they all seem to be waiting tables when they’re telling you this.)

I mean, I get payday lending, but lending specifically designed to help you pay the rent?  Holy shit.  What have we come to?  This is as bad as student loans, if you ask me.

Pete Buttigieg needs to go back to South Bend.

We were sitting at brunch with my sainted* 91-year-old mother yesterday, when she came out with the strangest question I’ve ever heard from her:  “What do you think of this guy, I can’t remember how his name is pronounced, who’s running for president?”

“You mean Pete Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend.”

“That’s him.”

“I think he hasn’t got a chance, because nobody is going to vote for a guy who can’t even fix up his own town.”

“Oh, you don’t mean that.”

“Oh, yes I do mean that.  There are people up there who absolutely despise him because he’s never come through on his campaign promises.  The black community up there is pretty much fed up with him.

My wife interjected, “We don’t talk about politics.  Period.  Unless we agree on a candidate.  So let’s stop right here.”

And that’s where it stopped.  But the truth is, if you dig into Mayor Pete, he’s really not worth the candle.  What I love is how Democrats are all mad and shit about Donald Trump not having any government experience and yet he’s President of the United States, and they think a guy like Mayor Pete, who’s barely out of diapers in the sense of his political life (he’s only a second-term mayor who’s unlikely to see a third term, if I’m reading his negatives correctly) is a great candidate for their nomination.

They thought that great faux-Hispanic from Texas, Robert Francis O’Rourke, was a great candidate, too, until just a couple of weeks ago.  Now the guy can’t buy a poll.  I see Buttigieg going the same way.

Sorry, Mom.  But you’re in better shape with Donald Trump in office, much as I hate to say it 🙂

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* It was Mother’s Day.  It’s the only day she’s “sainted” other than her birthday.  Trust me on this. 🙂

Fred Glynn is a hero and should not give up.

According to the primary election results, Fred Glynn — who was running against 6-termer aging carpetbagging crook and lying sack of shit former Ohio Democrat Jim Brainard for the GOP mayoral nomination in Carmel, Indiana — had 44.2% of the vote vs. the incumbent’s 55.8%.

The Gannett Star calls this the closest Carmel mayoral primary “in decades”.  For once, they and I agree on something.  That’s fantastic, and in a just world would give Brainard a well-deserved conniption.

But here’s the problem:  Only 14,659 votes were cast in a heavily-Republican city that boasts nearly a hundred thousand residents. Fred’s margin was only 1,729 votes.  That means only 865 votes would have had to flip to Fred to get the win. The Bureau of the Census estimated (in 2018) that 68% of Hoosiers statewide are registered to vote, so that suggests that somewhere in the neighborhood of 65,000ish registered voters reside in Clay Township.

So where were the other 50,000 of you?

One can only imagine what might have happened if, say, those 865 votes had flipped to Fred.  Or if another couple thousand GOP voters had gotten off their dead asses on Tuesday and bothered to vote for Fred.  Did all you people out there in West Clay and Home Place who were so angry about annexation actually visit a polling place on Tuesday?

The good news is that Fred remains a Hamilton County council member.  Let’s hope that he uses that position to investigate Carmel’s finances more closely.  Perhaps even insists that a full audit take place.  Where is the money coming from and where is it going — and most importantly, what is the actual plan for paying it back once it comes due?

I have two closing thoughts.  Well, three.

One is that the primary election system in this state has destroyed democracy by killing the party convention for the two major parties.  By state statute those parties MUST choose their candidates via the primary election system.  I’m sure this was intended to end the old smoke-filled room nomination process and the cronyism that it engendered, but I’m unconvinced that primaries are actually the best way to solve that problem.  Plus, and I’ve said this before, historically we had better candidates under the old system.  There are reasons for that that I don’t intend to go into at this time, but mostly it has to do with being vetted by the party rather than simply having to fill out an application and get x number of signatures to obtain ballot access.

Two is that I think Brainard is absolutely petrified about having to leave office in any way other than flat on his back, or “tits up” as the Brits put it.  He knows there will be audits and investigations and that there’s an excellent likelihood that he’ll end up doing time for felonies and misdemeanors connected to the rapid expansion of Carmel over the past quarter century.  At the very least his reputation will be significantly besmirched.  It is simply impossible that he has not committed crimes, and I find it amazing that nobody has ever ratted him out.  Apparently he’s really good at bribing people to keep their mouths shut and toe his line.  Brainard has always reminded me of the Wizard of Oz — “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain,” and head for the hills when it becomes obvious that you’re a fraud.  (The latter, sadly, is probably not in the cards.)

Finally:  Fred Glynn, you are a great County Councilman, a great husband, and a great dad.  Win or lose, you’re my hero and I expect you to keep plugging away for the benefit of your county, your lady, and your daughter.  Keep fighting the good fight, my friend, and God bless.

Whatever man can do, man can undo

A Texas state senator reports via Facebook that his bill, SB 1663, the Texas Monument Protection Act, has passed the Texas State Senate.  This bill as reported “creates permanent protections for the Alamo Cenotaph so future generations can learn the story of Texas.”

Bullshit.

There is no such thing as “permanent protection” in law.  Any law you pass this session could be overturned by another law in the next session.  This is true of any law you choose to consider, including the Constitutions of both your state and the nation as a whole.  Granted it is more difficult to overturn a Constitutional requirement, other than in the breach (2nd Amendment comes to mind) than it is a paltry federal or state statute, but “permanence” in law is defined more like “will last until the barbarians get the upper hand and throw it out”.

We used to protect monuments by the simple expedient of learning and having reverence for our history, regardless of the warts and blemishes we’d rather paper over.  Violations of this social compact were treated by shaming the guilty (and sometimes by a misdemeanor charge of vandalism).  Of course this was when “shame” was a concept that actually had some weight — nobody seems to be ashamed anymore of anything they do that falls outside of the old social compacts.

Moreover it would never have occurred to a state legislature to order the removal or destruction of a monument once deemed historically important simply because a few privileged snowflakes felt offended by it.

One of the most important things that happened after the Civil War (regardless of how badly it was muffed) was the acceptance of the rebellious states and their erstwhile soldiers back into the fold, without much more than acceding to Constitutional requirements (ratification of the 14th Amendment) and swearing out amnesty oaths.  There was no requirement to strike the rebel flag into dusty corners of museums, and indeed, several Southern states to this day contain elements (or alleged elements) of their Confederate past.*

In the last few years, however, anything that reeks of the parts of American History that sets off the snowflakes has slowly been receiving progressively** worse treatment by the Left.  Monuments have been removed, or moved from public to private property, graves have been desecrated (or serious discussion of their desecration has been held in public fora), flags have been removed from statehouse lawns, and so forth — only because there exists among the current generation of young people the idea that our history doesn’t matter and only the parts of it that they deem acceptable will be allowed to stand.

Of course they got these ideas stuffed into their heads by the public schools and the universities they attend or attended.  The Gramscian damage runs deep with this generation.  But it is only the tip of the iceberg represented by students taking over the academies and demanding that this professor be fired for speaking truths they don’t wish to hear, or that this outside speaker be banned for similar reasons.  The madness infecting the academy has also long infected the media, which looks on with approval as our culture is dismanted stone by stone.

I would argue that the Texas senator means well.  But I would further argue that laws such as the one he is so proud of having shepherded through his state senate would be unnecessary had we not allowed the enemies of liberty and civilization to dominate our public discourse to the extent to which they have come to do.

__________________

* I’m not even going to mention The Dukes of Hazzard.

** Giggle.

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