#Ferguson: We don’t know enough for informed commentary, but we do know that #AlSharpton is despicable

In today’s Philadelphia Inquirer crossword puzzle, 34 down was “Sharpton and Jolson,” the correct answer being “Als,” and I thought, what an insult to the actor and singer once called “the world’s greatest entertainer,” to be mentioned in the same breath with the famed race baiter.

Things are going well for the man known as Rev. Al. The July 17 death of African-American Staten Islander Eric Garner, 43, who lost his life while resisting arrest by police officers picking him up for selling loose, untaxed cigarettes, was tragic. For Rev. Al Inc., it’s been good for the grievance business.

Sharpton, who was sensibly banned from City Hall under the administration of former Mayor Rudy Giuliani and was welcomed back into the fold by former Mayor Michael Bloomberg — who never let him run the show — last week appeared at a City Hall “roundtable’’ discussion on police-community relations, perched beside de Blasio and Police Commissioner William Bratton. He outrageously warned the mayor that if minorities are targeted by police for arrest, “I’ll be your worst enemy.

He asserted that if the mayor’s biracial 16-year-old son, Dante, were not de Blasio’s kid, “He’d be a candidate for a chokehold.

But Sharpton sees participating in local engagements as nuisances.

“Going to City Hall is not the thrill of my life,” groused Sharpton, who boasted, “I met with the president of the United States last week!”

A group of city cops held a news conference Tuesday in which they denounced Sharpton for whipping up racial unrest before all the facts are known about the cause of Garner’s death. Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association President Pat Lynch blasted the city Medical Examiner’s Office’s “political” declaration that Garner’s death was a homicide resulting from a chokehold — a maneuver banned by the NYPD that was allegedly used by Police Officer Daniel Pantaleo — combined with Garner’s obesity, asthma, sleep apnea, diabetes and heart disease.

“If they weren’t taking me seriously, they wouldn’t be holding press conferences, going crazy,” Sharpton told me.

Sharpton doesn’t like the “broken-windows theory,” which holds that if nuisances such as broken windows are not tolerated in communities, more serious acts of vandalism and crime won’t occur down the road. This theory has guided policing for more than 20 years, especially benefitting poorer neighborhoods with high minority populations.

“Are you telling me that people spit on the street more in Bed-Stuy than in Greenwich Village?” railed Sharpton, who these days beds down on Manhattan’s gentrified Upper West Side.

“I suppose if you look at that community six times more, that’s what you’ll find.”

Yes, he’s arguing that cops who go after low-level offenders are racists. Scary.

Does any law-abiding citizen really want to see New York return to the year 1990, when murders in the five boroughs surged to an all-time high of 2,245? The city ended last year with 333 murders, or 215 fewer lifeless bodies than in 1963, when New York’s murder rate was first tallied.

Sharpton rose to fame in 1987 as a cheerleader for the rape hoax perpetrated by upstate African-American girl Tawana Brawley.

The sadly amusing part? That article was published on August 8th, and the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, occurred the next day. The Rev Sharpton, as one would expect, quickly flew to Missouri, to whip up more racial hysteria.

Robert Stacey Stacy McCain’s Official Position is that he doesn’t know what happened and we don’t know what happened in Ferguson beyond a few, established facts, and that most of what we are hearing is biased and uninformed speculation. The similarities with the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman case are startling: in Mr Zimmerman’s case, the race-baiters jumped in, before all of the facts were known — and a few are still unknown — and tried Mr Zimmerman in the media. When the case actually went to trial, the judgement of local prosecutors not to charge Mr Zimmerman was vindicated, and Mr Zimmerman was acquitted.

Will that be the case in Ferguson? Only the LORD knows, and He hasn’t told us yet. All of the facts may never be known — they certainly aren’t all known now, not that that has stopped the Rev Sharpton — and an informed judgement cannot be taken without information.

But we do know enough to say that the Rev Sharpton is a despicable human being. As usual, he jumps into any racial situation with both of his stinky feet, because that is what he does, and that is how he makes his money. If he should be so unfortunate as to get run over by a bus, your Editor will shed exactly zero tears.

The best little outhouse in Kentucky!

How many outhouses have glass doors? Photo by Editor. Click to Enlarge.

How many outhouses have glass doors? Photo by Editor. Click to Enlarge.

A friend of ours is building his cabin, from scratch, on a hilltop, and when nature calls, the “facility” is an outhouse. He tells me that, since the door faces west — and is not visible from the cabin — you get the best views of the sunsets anywhere in Kentucky from the throne.

Oh, and note: there’s a small maple tree right there, just in case there’s no toilet paper! :) Talk about green technology!

Rule 5 Blogging: The Big Red 1, on duty in Iraq!

It’s the weekend and time, once again, for THE FIRST STREET JOURNAL’S version of Rule 5 Blogging. Robert Stacey Stacy McCain described Rule 5 as posting photos of pretty women somewhat déshabillé, but, on this site, our Rule 5 Blogging doesn’t put up pictures of Jessica Alba in her summer clothes, but women, in full military gear, serving their countries in the armed forces. The terribly sexist authors on this site celebrate strong women, women who can take care of themselves and take care of others, women who have been willing to put their lives on the line in some not-so-friendly places, women who truly do have the “We can do it!” attitude.

This week, we return to American troops on duty in the liberation of Iraq from Ba’ath Party despotism. Under President Barack Hussein Obama, we withdrew our forces before Iraq was truly stabilized, and now the Islamic State (الدولة الإسلامية‎ ad-Dawlah al-ʾIslāmiyyah) is on the march, trying to turn a liberated county into another Islamist state. President Obama has ordered air strikes to try to stop ISIS, but has promised that no ground troops will be deployed to stop them, which means, in the real world, that IS might be inconvenienced, but not stopped.

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Continue reading ‘Rule 5 Blogging: The Big Red 1, on duty in Iraq!’ »

From Around the Blogroll

OK, OK, since I went on vacation, I haven’t actually been reading much on the blogs over the past week, but these look like good stories to me!

Back from Vacation

Scene from the top of Natural Bridge. Click to enlarge.

Scene from the top of Natural Bridge. Click to enlarge.

Your Editor took this photo from the top of Natural Bridge State Resort Park in Slade, Kentucky. We were in the Bluegrass State for vacation, and to look at a piece of property for retirement.

Now, unless the Lord has other plans which he hasn’t shared with me, I won’t be retiring for another five years, but the news is that we found a great place, at a tremendous bargain, and we have put in an offer on it. The paperwork is still pending, but there are no other offers on the table, and anticipate closing in mid-September. (The current owners need time to move.) I was going to publish a picture of it, but have decided to wait until we actually own the place. We weren’t planning on buying this trip, although my darling bride (of 35 years, 2 months and 28 days) had suggested that we could look at some land on which to build, and if we found the right piece of land, we might buy it this trip. Then, we found a decent house on an absolutely perfect piece of land — a hair under 8 acres — with river frontage, and everything seems to be falling into place. We toured the home on Tuesday, and made the offer Wednesday. The house needs some work, but it’s livable.

On Friday, we all went kayaking down the Red River, in Red River Gorge. (Each word is a separate link.) My wife, daughter and I are all experienced kayakers — though hardly experts — but my sister and her husband are not. There are several rapids to be negotiated on the eight-mile journey we took, but none of them are stronger than Class II. Even at that, I got dumped at one spot! The rapids weren’t serious, but it was a tight spot, I made a mistake that got me turned sideways, and over I went.

The Red River is not deep at all, and if you get dumped, all that you have to do is stand up in the vast majority of areas. A beginning kayaker can do the trip, and the hardest task he’ll have is learning to get in the kayak itself without going over. We rented kayaks for this trip,1 and took a standard journey, but it was still just the five of us, and no large kayaking tour. And there simply is no more beautiful place to go down river than the Gorge. The river has plenty of rocks, and there are a lot of naturally fallen trees around which to navigate, but that’s all part of the fun. I’d have loved to take pictures, but I didn’t take the camera, because I knew that I’d ruin it.

That’s it for now; I’m going to bed!

  1. We own our own kayaks, but they were back in Pennsylvania.

A great disappointment

As I had mentioned on Saturday, we are in Kentucky this week for vacation. I came to Louisville yesterday evening to spend some time with my best friend Ken, whom I had not seen since 2001. Ken is an old fashioned guy, one who still gets the newspaper delivered daily.

As a teenager, I had a paper route, delivering the Lexington Herald — later, and currently, the Lexington Herald-Leader, after the morning Herald merged with the afternoon Lexington Leader — and developed an interest in newspapers. The “newspaper of record” in Kentucky was The Courier-Journal, which was published in Louisville, and it was a full-sized publication, printed on a slightly more expensive paper, and it was a fine newspaper.

Now, I know full well that the newspaper business has been a rough one in the last decade or so, and have written a few stories about it under the category “18th Century Technology.” But while I’ve seen some of the effects of cost-cutting measures as time passed concerning The Philadelphia Inquirer, I hadn’t seen a copy of The Courier-Journal since the mid 1980s, and I have to say that I was stunned. Now owned by Gannett Company, it’s just barely bigger than tabloid sized papers, and it’s second section is simply a reprint of Gannett’s USA Today.

In short, it’s junk these days.  I’ve said previously that printed newspapers are dying technology; with the 24/7 cable news channels and the internet making almost any information a consumer might want available immediately, often for free, a medium which delivers news that is already hours old, and sometimes out-of-date, using dead trees and ink and ending up in the recycling bin — or the garbage can — has one foot in the grave already.

Vacationating!

Heading for the Bluegrass State!

Rule 5 Blogging: Women in Combat in History

It’s the weekend and time, once again, for THE FIRST STREET JOURNAL’S version of Rule 5 Blogging. Robert Stacey Stacy McCain described Rule 5 as posting photos of pretty women somewhat déshabillé, but, on this site, our Rule 5 Blogging doesn’t put up pictures of Uma Thurman in her summer clothes, but women, in full military gear, serving their countries in the armed forces. The terribly sexist authors on this site celebrate strong women, women who can take care of themselves and take care of others, women who have been willing to put their lives on the line in some not-so-friendly places, women who truly do have the “We can do it!” attitude. This week, a look back on some older photos, because, regardless of how we imagine things, armies have been using women in dangerous roles when they needed women in those roles.

Yugoslav fighters, members of the patriot forces, during training at an Allied camp in Italy on February 29, 1944. Click to enlarge.

Christian Lebanese women, members of Kataeb Phalangist party, train with weapons on Sept. 9, 1976. The Lebanese civil war erupted a year earlier. Erich Stering. Click to enlarge.

Jewish women in the Palestine Auxiliary Territorial Service of the British Army learn how to use gas masks, October 14, 1942. Many of them were in service on the Egyptian front. Click to enlarge.

Women help each other with bags at an embarkation port in the U.S. in this January 29, 1943, photo provided by the U.S. Army. They were bound for North Africa with the first detachment of the Women’’s Auxiliary Army Corps to be sent abroad. Click to enlarge.

A female Cambodian soldier totes a machine gun into combat during an operation across the Mekong River from Phnom Penh in the Prek Tamak area of Cambodia on Aug. 26, 1970. This region was the scene of heavy fighting between Cambodian troops and Viet Cong. The young woman is one of many who served as regular soldiers and medics in the rapidly expanded army . Ghislain Bellorget (Click to enlarge)

From Around the Blogroll

Robert Stacey Stacy McCain found the story of a college student, who had to get a restraining order against a very persistent and threatening deranged stalker:

“Eventually it all came to a climax when he attacked, well attempted to attack my then boyfriend in high school when I was 17-years-old and told him he should never speak to me again and threw hot coffee in his face. I got an emergency restraining order. When I returned to work the next morning, he was standing there and chased me back to my car. The restraining order was granted for a period of three years, this was August 2011. He was supposed to be out this month. He continued to contact me. He found me at Dartmouth, at my sorority, he found me at my family’s new home that they moved to. He found me through LinkedIn, Facebook, everything. I tried to delete things, he still found me. He hired a private investigator. We don’t know exactly where he gets his information, all I know is that when I returned home, after 18 months of not seeing this man, I got back to my parents’ house at 1:30 a.m. flying in from Dartmouth and at 8:30 a.m. the next morning he was knocking on my front door,” Woolrich detailed. “When he was arrested by the police, they found what they like to call a rape kit in the back of his car. It consisted of a sweatshirt, firewood, maps of the area, duct tape, a rope tied into a slip noose, hunting knives and various other items. He’s in custody now, because after doing that obvious act of harassment, that became enough for them to press felony charges, felony stalking charges vs. just a simple restraining order violation. When they obtained a search warrant for his house, they realized he had also found my address at school, my parents’ address, my mother’s full-name, he had pictures of me and my fiance that he had scratched my fiance out of.”

Dartmouth’s reaction, when the student said that she wished to carry a concealed weapon was that no, she couldn’t, but would have to call Safety and Security for security escorts, but they became quickly tired of this; she was a burden to them. One wonders: if Miss Woolrich is assaulted in campus, and is unable to defend herself because she’s being denied her Second Amendment rights, will the Dartmouth administrators who took the decision not to allow her to carry a weapon for her defense feel remorse or regret or shame? And would they be held accountable?

Deanna Fisher of the Victory Girls also addressed the story.

Sister Toldjah is taking a three-week summer vacation from blogging. As it happens, your Editor left for vacation this morning, for a week back in the Bluegrass State. A good part of this vacation will be camping, so I won’t have much internet connection.

Karen, the Lonely Conservative, noted that former President Jimmy Carter wants the United States to recognize officially Hamas, a terrorist group. I did a three part review of his book, Palestine: Peace not Apartheid, as well as a review of his We Can Have Peace in the Holy Land: A Plan That Will Work on he older site, and I cannot say that I was anywhere close to impressed. Democrats normally receive close to three quarters of the votes of American Jews, but, despite Mr Carter’s role in securing the Camp David Peace Accords, Jewish voters deserted him in 1980. Apparently, they could see in Mr Carter someone who was no friend.

Of course, many of us have noted that Barack Hussein Obama’s greatest accomplishment was to elevate Mr Carter to being only the second-worst President of modern times; sometimes it seems that Mr Carter is trying to regain his spot as worst ever.

Donald Douglas noted that almost 90% of those who do not get health insurance under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will not have to pay the penalty fine tax. As nearly as I can tell, the Affordable Care Act, which has granted exemptions and delays to large numbers of businesses and individuals alike, has succeeded not in getting uninsured Americans covered, but simply in extending federal government regulations over the insurance plans that most Americans already had.

Hube pointed out that the political leadership might have a different take on the illegal immigration problem because illegal immigrants are so rarely a problem for them, personally, or even anybody that they ever encounter.

On Truth Before Dishonor, John Hitchcock tracks another story demonstrating that those people claiming to be anti-Zionist just can’t help themselves when it comes to moving into straight anti-Semitism.

On Le*gal In*sur*rec*tion, William Jacobson is somewhat amused by the withdrawal of Senator John Walsh (D-MT) from the campaign, after it was discovered that he had plagiarized a good part of his masters thesis at the Army War College. Ain’t it amazing how getting into politics brings to light bad things people have done in the past? The obvious lesson: if you have gotten away with some shady stuff in the past, don’t run for, or accept appointment to, public office. Had he been Japanese, the almost expected penalty for getting caught cheating would have been harsher.

Jeff Goldstein waxed sarcastic over the case of Dr Lee Silverman, the psychiatrist who shot his armed attacker, who had already killed one nurse, and was firing at the doctor, because it was against hospital policy for employees to be armed.

William Teach of the Pirate’s Cove notes that the Obama Administration is again seeking to change the tax code without Congress, to keep American companies from reorganizing overseas for tax purposes.

And from Powerline:

Minnesota Cafe Charges “Minimum Wage Fee,” Liberals Outraged
By John Hinderaker

This is currently the most-read story on the Minneapolis Star Tribune’s web site: “Stillwater cafe faces heat for adding ‘minimum wage fee’ to tab.” Minnesota’s Democratic legislature recently voted to raise the state’s minimum wage to $8 an hour, 75 cents more than the federal level. Naturally, that increase is leading to higher prices:

A small cafe in Stillwater has thrown itself into the big battle over Minnesota’s minimum wage increases, inundating the cafe with dozens of phone calls and online comments this week after it tacked on a 35-cent fee to meal tabs.

Oasis Cafe owner Craig Beemer said the fee is needed to offset the 75-cent wage hike that took effect Aug. 1, the first time Minnesota’s minimum wage has increased in a decade. Even with only half a dozen servers, Beemer says it will cost him $10,000 more a year to pay servers $8 an hour instead of the federal rate of $7.25 an hour.

What is unique about the Oasis is that the cafe wants its patrons to know where the higher prices are coming from.

There’s more at the link, including the state Democratic Party’s reaction. But what really upsets them isn’t that businesses have to pass along the additional costs, but that at least one business is telling its customers why prices are being increased. The left want you to think that government can simply mandate higher wages, and somehow, magically, such won’t cause higher prices. What this restaurant is doing is telling its customers exactly why prices are higher. Such notifications have the wonderful effect of educating people on just what impact leftist policies have, and that is something they just cannot stand.