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Nov 11, 2018

Time to End Democrats' Impunity

Now that the Midterm Elections are over, the Justice Department needs to end the impunity with which Democrats in Washington, DC, violate laws. It's time for equality before the law to really mean the law applies to Democrats as well as Republicans. It's time to indict Cheryl Mills, Huma Abedin, Samantha Power and Susan Price for lying to the FBI when they said they knew nothing about Hillary Clinton's private email server. Subsequent evidence indicated they all helped set it up. If we can add mishandling classified information to the charges after all of the immunity granted to these people, we should. It's time to indict John Koskinen, former IRS Commissioner, for obstruction of justice and perjury, for saying that he couldn't find any record of Lois Lerner telling the IRS to harass Tea Party groups. Six almost simultaneous hard drive crashes and numerous overwritten backup tapes strain credulity to the breaking point. Lois Lerner needs to be indicted for disclosing taxpayer information to her friends in liberal PACs.
It's time to indict Peter Strzok and Lisa Page for obstruction of justice and lying to the FBI. All of those text messages make a great case with just what's on the public record. It's time to indict Andrew McCabe for lying to the FBI. McCabe was fired for "lacking candor," which translates to lying to the FBI.
In other words, the Democrats should get the Mueller special counsel treatment. If General Mike Flynn can be forced to plead guilty to lying to the FBI, when the agents who interviewed him didn't think Flynn was lying, then all of the Democrats who really did lie to the FBI or obstruct justice need to be indicted. There is no downside to prosecuting these people any more. It's not like the Democrats are going to go easy on us if we go easy on them.

Oct 17, 2018

Comparing Elizabeth Warren to Actual American Indians

Elizabeth Warren's claim of affirmative action status based on being an American Indian was completely bogus. Almost any tribal affiliation requires 1/8. Warren has 1/64 tops, and more likely 1/1024.  That likely means Warren in 99.9% white. The affirmative action status is supposed to compensate for past discrimination. I doubt Elizabeth Warren experienced any.

From 1957 to 1963 I spent my summers on the Flathead Indian Reservation in Western Montana. My family owned a ranch there. In about 1960, I knew we had become unpopular with other ranchers, but I didn't understand why. I was about 9, so I asked my Uncle Knute why. He told me we were paying an Indian haying crew 5 cents a bail to pick up our hay. This was the going rate for white workers. Uncle Knute told me Indians got only 3 cents a bail. I told Uncle Knute that the work was the same, so the pay should be the same. Uncle Knute said that's what we thought, but not everyone agreed.

I mention this to show you that Indians faced a lot of actual racial discrimination. I very much doubt that Elizabeth Warren faced anything like what I saw in Montana. She took personal advantage of a preference designed for people who had faced actual discrimination by lying about her background. Given how much discrimination the Flathead Indians faced when I lived there, I find Elizabeth Warren's claim insulting and selfish.

When I lived there, the Flathead Indians had almost nothing.  Fish and game laws didn’t apply to them, so sometimes they shot fish to get enough to eat.  Even if you miss with a .22, the shock wave knocks the fish unconscious, so you can net the fish. The houses they lived in barely kept the winter out.  The tribal organization wasn’t a noticeable presence.

The Flathead Indians, aka Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes, are now the most successful American Indian tribal organization in the US. (The Alaskan Native organizations are richer, because they sold access for the Alaska Pipeline, but as an employer and as a social service organization, I think the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes are overall more successful for their members.) They achieved this by pursuing education with a passion, so they could learn how to make the best of what they have. They own and operate their own 4-year college. Their tribal annual report looks like they are a conglomerate, not a tribe. They have a large timber operation, a beautiful hotel on Flathead Lake that I stayed at with my family once, an electronics factory and a recently purchased hydroelectric dam. They added casinos as an afterthought.  The timber operation was how they got their start.

My respect for the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes' accomplishments is why I find Elizabeth Warren's affirmative action claim so despicable. The Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes overcame poverty and prejudice by study and hard work to become extremely successful. Elizabeth Warren lied about her background to use an affirmative action shortcut she didn't really qualify for to achieve her success.

Just to be clear, Proudfoot is a Scottish name.  That part of my family came from Dumfriesshire, Scotland.  I am not claiming any American Indian ancestry.  Proudfoot is also my pen name, so if you don’t remember my family on the Flathead reservation, it’s because they weren’t called Proudfoot.

Sep 14, 2018

Winning Strategy for Afghanistan

As a former Air Force Systems Analyst Officer (1972-1976), the part of Vietnam that I remember is that in 11 days of unrestricted bombing and air dropped mines, Operation Linebacker II put all of North Vietnam's ports out of business.  This cut off all supplies, because the Red Chinese skimmed 90% plus of what was shipped overland.  If Linebacker II had been launched in 1965 instead of December, 1972, it would have saved a lot of lives and made Counter Insurgency (COIN) a lot more effective, a lot earlier.  We lost in Vietnam because between 1973 and 1975 Congress cut aid to South Vietnam by 75% and outlawed US air strikes anywhere in Southeast Asia.  Congress and the American people lost patience with the Vietnam War.  If we had bombed in 1965 and kept bombing, we would not have had Congress outlaw air strikes after we had won in 1967 or 1968.
The part of strategy in guerrilla war that the US has forgotten is that without supplies, guerrillas die. Guerrillas don't have the luxury of growing food or manufacturing ammunition for themselves.  They're on the run.  Rangers in the American Colonies originally got their name because they ranged through Indian territory and attacked Indian farming villages, which were the base of Indian supplies.  The US beat the Plains Indians by almost exterminating the American buffalo, which the Plains Indians used for food, clothing and shelter.  Hunting the American buffalo to extinction was an intentional strategy originally proposed by General William T. Sherman.  It was carried out ruthlessly, and it worked exactly as planned.  The Plains Indians moved onto reservations because they had nothing to eat.
Recently, we have watched ISIS go from strong to dead because we eliminated their source of income, oil sales, by bombing their tanker trucks, oil fields and oil handling facilities.  I don't mean to make light of the combat efforts it took to eliminate ISIS, but I do want to point out that ISIS was far less formidable broke than they were when they were rich.  Eliminating their financial resources made them far easier to defeat.
Which brings us to Afghanistan.  The Taliban runs on opium sales.  Everybody knows it.  To eliminate the Taliban, we need to eliminate their opium sales.  We can either legalize opium world wide, which would lower the value of the opium sold, or we can destroy all Taliban opium exports coming out of Afghanistan.  Since legalizing opium is highly unlikely, the only alternative is destroying all opium exports.  Anything less and we still have a rich Taliban who can hire soldiers and pay for food, guns and ammo.  We haven't done this because Afghanistan's main foreign exchange earning export is illegal opium sales.  However, unless we do something about Taliban opium, the best outcome we can hope for in Afghanistan is a steady state of what the Israelis call "mowing the lawn."  We can use air power and special forces to limit the Taliban to controlling 40% of Afghanistan.  We can't win in Afghanistan unless the Taliban can't sell their opium to finance operations. 
To defeat the Taliban, we would have to eradicate opium systematically, using air power, in all areas the Taliban controls or even partially controls.  If the Taliban controls your poppy field, the US will destroy your crop.  If you want to keep your crop, keep the Taliban out of your area.  Otherwise, the US puts napalm on your poppies.  Displaced farmers will move to areas under government control.  There will be no people, and no money, for the Taliban to use to support their operations.  At that point, COIN (COunter INsurgency operations) will work a whole lot better.
Original article I reacted to.

Aug 27, 2018

Weiner Laptop, Obstruction Of Justice in the DOJ

The DOJ is participating in a massive cover up for Hillary Clinton. The Weiner laptop is the smoking gun. Contrary to what Comey said, it was never fully investigated. The rule of law means that everybody is subject to the same laws. It doesn't mean one law for Republicans and a free pass for Democrats. Under Obama, the Justice Department became a partisan tool for protecting Democrats and prosecuting Republicans.  The Justice Department participated in a massive obstruction of justice to clear Hillary Clinton of crimes that include 100 felony counts of mishandling classified information and also lying to the FBI.  Anthony Weiner did not have a security clearance, but the FBI found classified material on his laptop. Why wasn't he indicted? Because he is a Democrat and Huma Abadin's husband. Huma is a close friend and aide of Hillary.  Here's a link on the Weiner laptop.
As Attorney General, Sessions has the standing to bring obstruction of justice charges against Clinton and all of her aides. Sessions could start with the people inside the Justice Department and the FBI who clearly didn't want to find anything when it came to Clinton's crimes, so they didn't seriously investigate any of them. These people are guilty of obstruction of justice, starting with Strzok, Ohr and McCabe and moving on up to Lynch and Comey. This probably requires a special prosecutor because it's clear the Justice Department itself is severely tainted.
There is no equality before the law.  If you are a politically connected Democrat, you can violate the law with impunity.  If you are connected to Trump, you get extra scrutiny.  If you are an ordinary person, one count of mishandling classified information sends you to jail.  I'm not saying that Manafort and Cohen are innocent, because they aren't.  I'm saying that Lois Lerner, John Koskinen, Huma Abedin, Cheryl Mills, Samantha Power and Susan Rice are guilty, and they have been given a free pass, at least so far.
Tony Podesta was in the same business of lobbying for the same Ukrainian oligarch as Paul Manafort, but Podesta is a Democrat. The FBI raided Manafort's house with drawn guns in the middle of the night, like it was a meth lab. Podesta hasn't even been investigated.
If this lack of equality before the law continues, the rule of law in the US is over. The Justice Department becomes a bureaucratic struggle for power, not an agency for enforcement of the law. The US becomes a banana republic, not because of Trump, but because of Obama and the bureaucratic mess he left in the Justice Department.

Aug 14, 2018

Sun May Attack Our Electric Grid

Electromagnetic pulse isn't the only reason, or even the best reason, to harden the grid.  Geomagnetic storms from the sun can have similar, but even bigger, catastrophic effects.  The last really big storm, in 1859, would be a severe disaster if it occurred today.  It caused sparks that jumped the gaps in telegraph keys. severely shocked telegraph operators and set telegraph paper on fire in 1859.  We almost had one in 2012, but luckily it missed us by 9 days of orbit position.   The odds of getting hit with a solar storm in the next decade might be over 10%.  An 1859 sized storm would destroy transformers all across the electric grid.  It would take months to restore service.  In the meantime, distibution of running water, natural gas for heating and gasoline to drive our cars would all stop, because all of them depend on electric pumps.  The electronics in our cars might be fried as well.  Please see the links:

Consent of the Governed and Interpreting the Constitution

If consent of the governed means anything, we have to apply the Constitution in the way the people who ratified it understood it.   Otherwise we are imposing laws nobody consented to, which is tyranny.  It's easy to say that people who object to decisions like Roe v Wade and Obergfell are just misguided bigots.  But in fact, they are objecting to laws invented by the courts that were not lawfully adopted by the legislature or consented to by Constitutional ratification.  The ends don't justify the means.  The means change the outcome.  If the Supreme Court interprets the Constitution in ways that nobody consented to, there is no limit to the Supreme Court's power.  There is also no binding precedent, because any precedent can be reinterpreted to mean something entirely different.  The Supreme Court becomes a Supreme Revolutionary Council with essentially unlimited powers and life appointments for members.

Let me give you an example of how this works.  The 14th Amendment was passed in 1868, when homosexual acts were illegal in every state.  If the legislators who voted to ratify the 14th Amendment had known they were ratifying same sex marriage, it wouldn't have passed.  Obergfell should have been decided on the full faith and credit clause.  Any marriage validly performed in one state must be recognized in all states.  This would have left the states in control of who could marry inside their borders, but forced all states to recognize same sex marriages performed elsewhere.  Such a decision would have been consistent with the invalidation of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which conservatives liked because of the states rights reasoning, even though the outcome didn't go their way.  DOMA was invalidated because the Supreme Court ruled marriage was a state matter, and federal law could not interfere with it under the 10th Amendment.  A ruling on full faith and credit would have been much more easily defended as consistent with the original intent of the Constitution.   If Obergfell had been decided on full faith and credit, doubt about the permanence of Obergfell, including this article, wouldn't be necessary.  Since using the 14th Amendment was a stretch, Obergfell is a shaky decision.

Samantha Bee and the Goal of the Resistance

This was my reaction to a WSJ article on Samantha Bee calling Ivanka Trump a "feckless c*nt."   It got 102 likes, more than any other comment I've made on WSJ.

Samantha Bee's insulting obscenity was in service of a slow-motion coup d'etat under the color of authority, intended to reverse the outcome of the 2016 election.  President Trump was duly elected according to the Constitution.  The #Resistance wants to use any and all means possible to either remove President Trump or paralyze him with pseudo legal lawfare.  For serving the cause of undermining the Constitution, Samantha Bee was applauded by people who not only have no decency.  They have no respect for Constitutional government.  To a Vietnam Era Veteran like me, Samantha Bee and the people in the #Resistance are getting very close to becoming domestic enemies of the Constitution.  This isn't a mere squabble about the niceties of discourse.  The election outcome was incorrect, according to the left, so they need to fix it.    The left's temper tantrum over Hillary's loss is assumed to be more important than the rule of law, checks and balances or preserving the Constitution itself.

Why I Dislike Coastal Elites

I generally find leftist elites hard to tolerate because they take no responsibility for their actions. For me this started at the end of the Vietnam War, when Democrats in Congress outlawed US air strikes in Southeast Asia and cut the aid budget for South Vietnam by 75% between 1973 and 1975. From 1975 to 1979, Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge killed about 2 million Cambodians. Victorious communists in Vietnam and Laos killed several hundred thousand more people. Roughly 2 million people fled South Vietnam to escape communist rule in leaky boats. The "Give peace a chance" folks maintain to this day there was no bloodbath.

The same people, like John Kerry, or people mentored by the antiwar crowd, like the Smartest President Ever, are still leading the left. The number of dead and the number of refugees in Syria that resulted from Obama's self restraint in the Middle East, where, like in Vietnam, we chose not to use air power effectively, are reminiscent of pictures of refugees from Vietnam for a reason. The same policies by the same people gave the same outcomes.

As to why I dislike coastal elites more than fly over country elites, that's easy. Coastal elites are snobbier. They are much more likely to tell me that I can be ignored because I have horse manure on my boots and my degrees from fly over country schools are far inferior to their degrees from Harvard.

I interviewed to go to Harvard. I was a 3rd generation legacy at Harvard, with the grades, SAT scores and extra curricular activities to get in there. Their snooty attitude, and the aniti-war slogans all over campus, repelled me. I didn't even apply. So part of why I dislike coastal elites is that I could have been one and chose not to be.
Then there are people who say that if you are elite yourself, you can't complain about elites. These folks are also very irritating. John Hinderaker wrote a piece in his Power Line Blog about "Why Normal Americans Hate the Elites." The comments claimed that since Mr. Hindraker graduated from Dartmouth and Harvard Law, he was an elite and had no right to complain about other elites. I thought that was a particularly funny socialist class solidarity argument, so I wrote this comment in response:
I need your advice urgently. I have an MS in Management from Northwestern University (Kellogg Graduate School of Management) and an MS in Statistics from the University of Illinois, Champaign, both in fly over country. Since I went to grade school in Missoula, Montana, I identify as a redneck, even though I am over educated for this status and can turn the accent on and off like a faucet. My alternate accents include Montgomery, AL, and Skokie, IL. I live in North Suburban Cook (Crook) County, Illinois, which is a very blue state, but I voted for Trump in the general election (not the primary). I'm a Vietnam Era veteran with a low tolerance for leftist malarkey. Do I have enough street cred to be tired of coastal elites with leftist attitudes, or am I still too elite myself to have this position? In your answer, please state your credentials for judging when people can be fed up with elitist fertilizer of equine origin. 

Then there was a woman who argued that elite status was just superior intellect and should be celebrated. She said the author and other bloggers on the site should "own their elite status." For her, I had this response: 

The problem with leftists, ma'm, is they know so much that just ain't so. When their arguments break down, intellectually, these folks depend on the authority of their credentials to carry their arguments. They claim it's true because they have elite credentials, and you ain't. Well ma'm, my MS in Statistics from the University of Illinois, Champaign, tells me that extrapolating from less than 100 years of observations of statistical noise to forecast climate patterns that last hundreds or even thousands of years is statistical folly. People who make the "settled science" argument use their better credentials to claim better credibility, but their arguments remain statistical folly. That's why people like me, in fly over country, are tired of elites who refuse to engage intellectually, when they can condescend instead using their "superior credentials" to avoid having to face the fallacies of their arguments.

The same lady demanded, "Give me one concrete example of a member of a member of "majority" being "tyrannized" by an "academic."  I responded, "If Republicans were a protected class, almost every university in the country would lose an adverse impact lawsuit."


Mar 28, 2018

Conservative View of Parkland Shooting (Summary)

Federal Program Protected Parkland Shooter From Arrests
There was a federal program created by the Obama Administration to end the "school to prison pipeline." The Trump Administration is trying to cancel the program, but this is being hampered by legal action and administrative delays.
The program subsidized school counseling to replace arrests for criminal offenses on school grounds. This program meant that the Parkland shooter was counseled instead of arrested numerous times. The result was that the Parkland shooter was able to buy guns, because he lacked an arrest record, and the FBI couldn't find him, and didn't take tips about the Parkland shooter seriously, because there was no arrest record. Here's the best link on it, but there are more, if you need them.

Here are some more links to how the program was developed, and how it was intended to work. Please note the emphasis on limiting arrests, regardless of the crimes committed. Here's 5 more links on the program. Some are in favor, some against:
Gun Restraining Orders Are the Best Way to Address the Problem
School shooters generally have noticeable mental and social problems.  The system generally knows about these individuals, like the Parkland shooter, but claims it can’t do anything about them.  First, authorities need to arrest and jail them if they commit assaults on teachers or other students.  That gives them an arrest record and warns the potential perpetrators not to go any farther.  But now there’s a new tool, a gun restraining order.  It gives authorities something between jail, or involuntary commitment in a mental institution, and letting a time bomb walk free.   After a hearing, a judge can remove the right of a defendant to own weapons.  The burden of proof is less than for involuntary commitment.  This was recently enacted into Florida law.  Gun Restraining Orders are supported by the NRA.
The Purpose of the Second Amendment
The purpose of an armed US populace is to check the federal government's ability to exceed its specified powers under the Constitution.  This argument was put forward as a rebuttal to arguments against the Constitution, that the federal government would have so much power that it would oppress the people and would be able to impose a military dictatorship.  See the last 2 paragraphs of Federalist Paper 46 in this link:

The last two paragraphs of the link say that the Federal Government will not be able to abuse its power because the residents of America, unlike the residents of Europe, are armed with military grade weapons and would be able to organize themselves into militias that would outnumber the federal army.  Some argue that Federalist paper 46 is not the same as the 2nd Amendment.  However, the same man, James Madison, wrote both of them, about 18 months apart.  Federalist Paper 46 was published 29 January 1788.  The Bill of Rights was introduced in Congress on June 8, 1789.  I think that Federalist Paper 46 is a good indication of James Madison’s intent in writing the 2nd Amendment.

For those of you who would argue that people armed with AR-15s and other "assault weapons" would not be able to fight a federal army today, please consider the amount of time it took the Iraqi Army to take Mosul, even though it was using large amounts of US artillery and air strikes. It took over 9 months, from October 17, 2016, to late July, 2017, to take Mosul from ISIS. ISIS was armed mainly with AK-47 rifles (true assault rifles) and improvised explosives, with a few captured machine guns and mortars. I think this shows that the 2nd Amendment is still an effective check on the Federal Government.
You should also consider that there are at least 5 million privately owned "assault weapons" in the US, and there are over 300 million privately owned guns overall. This means that there is more than one gun for each US resident. There is no way you can confiscate all of the guns out there. Don't bother to deny that's what you really want. We don't trust you. "If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor." Malarkey on steroids. The left lies for a living.
The typical pro-gun voter believes the 2nd Amendment is a guarantee that the rest of the Bill of Rights will not be canceled unconstitutionally by the federal government. They view any effort to curtail gun rights as the first step in an unlawful move towards dictatorship. Since the left is already trying to cancel Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Speech in places the left controls, like college campuses, pro-gun voters increasingly feel the left is not dealing in good faith. They are likely to resist violently any effort to confiscate guns or have the Supreme Court reinterpret the meaning of the 2nd Amendment. I don't see any way any grand compromise can be reached on this issue.

Self Defense is a Natural Human Right

Both the Founders and a substantial number of people today believe that self defense is a natural right.  Both the Founders and many people today believe that self defense requires military weapons.  If you don’t believe that, ask yourself how Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge were able to kill about a quarter of Cambodia’s population, about 2 million men, women and children, in the killing fields between 1975 and 1979.  Cambodians had no weapons to defend themselves with.  You say that could never happen in the US.  Before 1960, almost everyone would have said it could never happen in Cambodia either.  The Khmer Rouge Communists were an unprecedented event in Cambodian history.