Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Hanson _ Have We Reached Point of No Return? A Jackass? U.N Tries Erasing History!

Obama appearing to be the healer.

Mike Walters recap draft of our mayor's informational; talk yesterday.  (See 1 below.)
Victor Davis Hanson asks whether we have reached the point of no return?  (See 2 below.)
Sowell's "Part Two" regarding the war on cops. (See 3 below.)
The reality of Israel and Jewish History cannot be erased try as the U.N. and its various anti-Semitic agencies seek to do so.  Even a growing number of Arabs and Muslims are tiring of throwing money at the Palestinians efforts to demonize Israel through the U.N  (See 4 below.)
Erick Erickson believes Obama acted like a true Democrat yesterday - A Jackass. (See 5 below.)
1)SIRC True Perspectives Seminar July 12 – Savannah Mayor Eddie DeLoach

Dealing with Potential Violent Protests

To a packed audience at the Plantation Ballroom, the Savannah Mayor spent an hour outlining the major themes of his administration, starting with the recent current events where activist protests in Dallas gave rise to the deaths of five police officers. When protestors appeared in Savannah to highlight their concerns about police, the Police Chief in Savannah joined in their march downtown.

He also highlighted Savannah’s tradition of maintaining non-violent protests even during the civil rights movement where other cities experienced looting by some of the protesters. DeLoach expressed his strong view that the mayor sets the tone on how these events can enfold successfully.  One can respect the rights of those expressing grievances while not agreeing to their merits. By meeting together in a respectful fashion, one can accomplish very good things while minimizing the adverse outcomes.

Education as a Major Theme

To foment jobs growth here, it is recognized that the education system has to improve – perhaps even away from traditional approaches. One example is the recent experiment in trying to improve results starting with age six months to three years – in the pre-pre- school milieu. Savannah’s implementing of Parent University should pay great dividends in the future as young mothers realize the importance of very early stimulation of their infants in developing their ultimate potential in later grades. The goal is having all children reading at grade level by the end of third grade. This is a key indicator of later success in school and in job readiness.

Another successful program started recently was Summer intern programs, where businesses are encouraged to take on young people in summer jobs to get them acclimated to what is required to succeed in the workplace. Some of these young interns even expressed concerns about how much is subtracted in taxes from their paychecks. DeLoach even cited his Chief of Staff Martin Sullivan as suggesting that their skepticism on the worthiness of tax deductions could result in some of these students eventually becoming Republicans. DeLoach also singled out the Landings Association’s major role in this intern program by employing ten young people this summer.

Anti-Crime Programs

First priority was getting the pay scales for Savannah Police to a competitive level, after resolving quickly the merger issues between the County and the City. Next was addressing attractive career paths to officers to promote longevity to the police units.

Future Actions

A next priority is the hiring of a City Manager (six candidates have been interviewed already).
Other progress is being made on issues such as allowing Food Trucks in Savannah. Past administrations had become mired in minutia detail on an appropriate ordinance. DeLoach’s approach is to get resolution quickly on needed compromises to get something done, even if it is short of perfection.  This is also true of a Taxi Ordinance and an Alcohol Ordinance on drinks in public.

Jobs Programs

DeLoach was a realist in that many of the jobs that can be gotten for Savannah might not be the “professional” ones, but rather the mundane ones such as welding and heating and air conditioning service and repair jobs. He especially cited a local union program of guaranteeing jobs for those who complete some of their Apprenticeship programs. Finally there will be jobs created as SPLOST funds from past tax revenue programs are ultimately expended in building new programs (e.g. fixing the Civic Center).

Q&A Session

The first question dealt with how to solve a fundamental crime problem that many troubles youths grow up in single parent families with no male authority and role model.  DeLoach highlighted one major step that Savannah took was organizing a Major Crimes Unit involving all parties dealing with crime inn solving the major gang problem in Savannah. Starting last November, major crime fighting units coupled with the FBI and ATF staffs confronted gang leaders to threaten their lifestyles unless they reformed. The goal is a reduction of at least 50% of the violent crimes committed by the less than half a percent of the populace – the violent gang members in Savannah. This technique has worked in other Southern cities and should work in Savannah. (Editor’s note: Savannah District Attorney Meg Heap also heralded this program in a past presentation to SIRC and promised to report to the public on its success in future years and months.)

Another dealt with New York City’s former success with “stop and frisk”. This is now considered by local judges as problematic with regard to privacy and search and seizure constitutional restrictions when liberal groups lodge protests.

One concern was expressed (surprisingly) that the rash of hotel building in downtown Savannah might be creating an oversupply. (Editor’s note: the free market can sometimes make mistakes, but government’s attempt at a solution often creates more of a problem with unnecessary regulations.)

Other questions dealt with fixing the Civic Center as a more appropriate theater and symphony venue, as well as the related question of will the city build another arena.
First DeLoach committed the city to doing something to keep the Civic Center viable and more successful.

As for the Arena project, he also said it is likely to be built but perhaps closer to downtown and the Civic Center. He acknowledged that it is an amenity at this stage because there is not likely to b more than 70 events a year there, but the SPLOST funds were raised by telling the public an arena would be an asset to the city.

On education, DeLoach referred to several successful public school ventures in Savannah (Arts Academy and Classic Academy), but they were not really leveragable to make all the public schools much better.

On tourism, major efforts were underway to expand the Ambassador program to support visitors via visible roving experts to direct visitors to desired destinations downtown. Also there is a Blue Team project to project a police presence downtown to reassure outside visitors as well as nearby visitors that security is a major goal of Savannah’s public officials.

2)Fundamentally Transformed 

Have we reached a point of no return? 

By Victor Davis Hanson
Multicultural societies — from 19th-century Austria–Hungary to contemporary Iraq, Lebanon, the former Yugoslavia, and Rwanda — have a poor record of keeping the peace between competing tribes. They usually end up mired in nihilistic and endemic violence.

The only hope for history’s rare multiracial, multiethnic, and multireligious nations is to adopt a common culture, one that artificially suppresses the natural instinct of humans to identify first with their particular tribe. America, in the logical spirit of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, was exceptional among modern societies in slowly evolving from its original, largely European immigrant population to a 21st-century assimilated, integrated, and intermarried multiracial society, in which religious and racial affiliations were incidental, not essential, to one’s public character and identity.

But such a bold experiment was always tenuous and against the cruel grain of history, in which the hard work of centuries could be easily torn apart by the brief demagoguery of the moment. Unfortunately, President Obama, ever since he first appeared on the national political scene in 2008, has systematically adopted a rhetoric and an agenda that is predicated on dividing up the country according to tribal grievances, in hopes of recalibrating various factions into a majority grievance culture. In large part, he has succeeded politically. But in doing so he has nearly torn the country apart. Indeed, it is no exaggeration to suggest that no other recent president has offered such a level of polarizing and divisive racial bombast.

Most recently, without citing any facts about the circumstances of the police shootings in Minnesota and Louisiana, Barack Obama castigated the police and the citizenry on their culpability for racial disparity and prejudicial violence. “[T]hese fatal shootings are not isolated incidents. They are symptomatic of the broader challenges within our criminal-justice system, the racial disparities that appear across the system year after year, and the resulting lack of trust that exists between law enforcement and too many of the communities they serve.” Obama did not yet know the race of the policemen involved (as in the case of Baltimore, the Minnesota shooting involved non-white officers), the circumstances that led to the shootings, or the backgrounds of either the officers or their victims.

Shortly afterwards, twelve Dallas law-enforcement officers were shot, and five of them killed, by a black assassin who declared solidarity with Black Lives Matter and proclaimed his hatred for white law enforcement. That outbreak prompted Obama to take to the podium again to recalibrate his earlier message. This time he amplified his gun-control message, and somewhat delusionally added that the upswing in racial polarization did not imperil national unity — in much the same way that, in years past, he had announced that al-Qaeda was on the run, we were leaving behind a stable Iraq, and ISIS was a jayvee organization. Note the Obama editorial method in the case of police incidents, from Skip Gates to Louisiana and Minnesota: He typically speaks before he has the facts, and when subsequent information calls into question his talking points and theorizing, he never goes back and makes the corrections. Nor does he address facts — from Ferguson to Dallas — that do not fit his political agenda. Finally, a police shooting of an African-American suspect is never an “isolated event,” while the shooting of an officer by a black assassin is isolated and never really thematic of any larger racial pathology.

We were introduced to Obama’s idea of career enhancement through racial polarization during the 2008 political campaign. Obama had earlier, when he saw it as being to his advantage, emphasized to the Chicago Sun-Times that as a devout Christian he dutifully attended Rev. Wright’s church: “Yep. Every week. Eleven o’clock service.” Indeed, Wright offered inspiration to Obama with his trite “Audacity of Hope” refrain, which Obama borrowed for the title of his 2008 campaign booklet.

Once Wright was exposed on video as an uncouth racist and anti-Semite, Obama made the necessary adjustments, as “every week” transmogrified into spotty attendance that explained why Obama was shocked — in Casablanca style — when his spiritual mentor was publicly exposed. In that era of Obamamania, most people shrugged that Obama surely never bought into Wright’s racist and anti-American sermonizing, but simply put up with the venom spewed every week at Trinity United as a political investment, both establishing his radical street credentials and bolstering support among the members of Chicago’s black churches.

But there were plenty of markers in Obama’s own turns of phrase to indicate that racial tranquility is not where we were headed: “Typical white person” and a litany of divisive campaign sloganeering followed (“bring a gun to a knife fight” and “get in their faces,” along with the stereotyping of the white working class of Pennsylvania, who had failed to appreciate Obama’s singular brilliance in the state’s Democratic primary).

Nothing much changed when Obama entered the Oval Office (and why should it, when Obama won record majorities of minority voters in 2008 and would again in 2012?). Attorney General Eric Holder, who almost immediately dropped a likely successful voter-intimidation prosecution against the New Black Panther Party (a group to which the Dallas police assassin at one time claimed affinity), set the new tone of the Obama Justice Department by referring to African-Americans as “my people” and deriding Americans in general as “a nation of cowards.”

“Punish our enemies” characterized Obama’s approach to race and bloc voting. Each time an explosive racial confrontation appeared on the national scene, Obama — always in his accustomed academic intonations — did his best to exploit the issue. So the Skip Gates farce was leveraged into commentary about police stereotyping and profiling on a national level. The police officer in the Ferguson shooting was eventually exonerated by Obama’s own Justice Department, but not before Obama had already exploited the shooting for political advantage, as part of a larger false narrative of out-of-control racist cops who recklessly shoot black suspects at inordinate rates to the population (rather than in the context of their national incidence of contact with police).

It mattered nothing that the signature line of Ferguson, and the founding motto of Black Lives Matter — “Hands up, don’t shoot” — was exposed as a myth by Eric Holder’s investigators. Right in the midst of the ongoing Trayvon Martin shooting trial, the president of the United States, in carrion fashion, weighed in by speculating whether the son he had never had would have looked like young Martin — not merely risking prejudicing the case (although the newly dubbed “white Hispanic” George Zimmerman was nevertheless exonerated by a jury of his peers), but reminding the country that our racial heritages are the basis of tribal resonance.

Black Lives Matter was founded on a separatist and radical racialism. When an inept Bernie Sanders tried to suggest that “All lives matter,” he was bullied into silence by activists who rushed the podium. “Pigs in a blanket, fry ’em like bacon” became a Black Lives Matter marching slogan last summer in Minnesota — rhetoric amplifying the calls for “Dead Cops” in an earlier New York City march that was in turn logically reified in Dallas by the assassin who “dead copped” white policemen.

When Obama invited Black Lives Matter founders to the White House in February, he praised them by asserting that they were “much better organizers” than he had been at a comparable age, adding that he was “confident that they are going to take America to new heights.” Prior Black Lives Matter marching death chants to police should have been known to Obama at the time.

Every problem has a resolution — but often not a good one. In the case of widely publicized shootings of black suspects by police, regardless of the landscapes involved, police already have proven less likely to respond promptly to inner-city calls for help, rightly or wrongly convinced that they either will be shot at by assassins, or will be forced to use force to protect themselves in a manner that will end their careers, or will hesitate and pay a lethal price for losing deterrence. They likewise assume that their politically appointed high-profile superiors will not support them under media and political pressures, and that society at large has no stomach for a candid conversation — ranging from history to culture to public policy to economics — about the dilemma of young black males, who constitute about 3 to 4 percent of the general population, and are responsible for between 25 and 50 percent of some categories of violent crime.

This spring Obama invited a series of rappers and activists to the White House, whose careers and rhetoric were often violent and divisive. Rapper Rick Ross — on bail pending trial on kidnapping and assault charges — had his ankle bracelet go off at a White House ceremony. Black Lives Matter and Ferguson activist Charles Wade abruptly declined his White House invitation, apparently because he had been recently arrested for pimping and human trafficking. Marquee rapper Kendrick Lamar’s Pimp a Butterfly album cover portrayed black men hoisting champagne bottles and displaying hundred-dollar bills on the White House lawn, in merriment over the corpse of a white judge with his eyes X’d out. Reality mimicked art when Lamar (whose video sets include singing from a vandalized police car) was invited to the White House — or perhaps when five fatally shot policemen on the ground in Dallas superseded Lamar’s image of a prone and eyeless dead judge. Obama, remember, has cited the police-hating Lamar (e.g., “And we hate Popo, wanna kill us dead in the street for sure, nigga”) as his favorite rapper and the dead-judge album “as best album of the year.”

As the president has reminded us, words matter. So far in 2016 the shootings of police are up 44 percent over 2015. If celebrating the image of a murdered judge is no impediment to an Oval Office visit and a presidential endorsement, why would the more reckless activists see any real social odium in escalating the hatred? What does one have to do to be disqualified from a White House visit or earn the president’s disapproval? Be under indictment for a felony? Commercialize a picture of a judge’s corpse? That more police may have been targeted in Tennessee, Georgia, and Missouri following the Dallas carnage was the logical result of more than a year of contextualizing Black Lives Matter rhetoric and expressing pseudo-hip adulation of purveyors of anti-police and anti-judicial venom — but always from a safe distance. What does a Secret Service agent think when Lamar, who became a multimillionaire from lyrics like “We hate Popo,” comes to visit the Oval Office?

Obama predicates such no-consequences racial trafficking on four astute assumptions: First, he believes that promoting racial identity, and the more raw the better, is good politics — that it will solidify his new Democratic coalition, energizing grievances to ensure record turnout and bloc voting.

Second, he assumes that most of America is still locked into an anachronistic 1960s dialectic of a white/black binary in the context of continuing bitterness over the racism of Jim Crow — rather than the complex reality of a 21st-century society of multiple races and ethnicities, well into our sixth decade of affirmative action and racial compensation.

Third, Obama assumes that his Ivy League metrosexual and teleprompted image, in wink-and-nod fashion, reassures white liberals that while he flirts with and manipulates the uncouth rhetoric and imagery that the cruder rappers or Rev. Wright routinely peddle, he could not possibly buy into their full program.

Fourth, Obama assumes that his own racial heritage exempts his sloppy rhetoric and actions from the sort of accountability that would doom a non-minority politician who had compiled a similar oeuvre of tolerating racial incendiarism.
Yet when a society reaches a point at which the remedy — honest dialogue and debate — is considered worse than the disease — racial animosity — then chaos and disintegration are the prognoses.

Up to now, the war zones in Chicago and Philadelphia and other inner cities that routinely experience abject killing each week have been largely ignored by progressives, given the nature of black-on-black violence in cities with strict gun-control laws, liberal governments, and ample social-welfare programs. Yet it may be that these recent shootings in Dallas and various other cities, rather than signaling a new dialogue, mark a strategy of exporting gun violence to purported white purveyors of racism. If that happens, then we are back to the 1960s — but worse. Read the online racist comments posted on any major news agency’s accounts of a crime involving race to sense the polarization that has intensified since 2008.

Meanwhile, abroad, the world looks not just at the tearing apart of American society under Obama, but at that society’s collective inability to even discuss the catalysts for either Islamic terrorism of the Orlando and San Bernardino sort, or the recent racial violence. When this is collated with seven years of failed reset with Russia, the Iranian deal, the rise of ISIS, the implosion of the Middle East, and the new belligerency in China and North Korea, we may be facing a final six months of a lame-duck presidency the likes of which have never been seen in modern political history.

Perhaps Obama has been prescient after all about American sins and the need for apologizing, contextualization, and reset. A 21st-century society that celebrates separatism and violence and that pardons the venom of Black Lives Matter and its more extreme manifestations, or that exempts Hillary Clinton from all legal accountability, may simply not be able to exercise a position of world moral authority after all.


The War on Cops: Part II 

By Thomas Sowell

Even in this age of runaway emotions, there are still some people who want to know the facts. Nowhere are facts more important, or more lacking, than in what has been aptly called "The War on Cops," the title of a devastating new book by Heather Mac Donald.

Few, if any, of the most fashionable notions about the police, minorities and the criminal justice system can withstand an examination of hard facts. Yet those fashionable notions continue to dominate discussions in the media, in politics and in academia. But Ms. Mac Donald's book of documented facts demolishes many fashionable notions.

Consider one of the big talking points of politicians and others who claim that the harsher penalties for people selling crack cocaine than for people selling powder cocaine show racism, since crack cocaine is more likely to be used by blacks.

The cold fact, however, is that black political and community leaders, back in the 1980s, spearheaded the drive for more severe legal penalties against those who sold crack cocaine. Black Congressman Charlie Rangel of Harlem was just one of those black leaders who urged these more severe penalties. So did the New York Times, the promoter of many crusades on the left.

Fast forward to the present, when both black leaders and the New York Times are blaming white racism for the more severe penalties for selling crack cocaine. If you want to see what they were saying back in the 1980s, check pages 154-159 of "The War on Cops."

When the political winds change, politicians change. But that does not change the facts about what they said and did before.

As in her previous book, "Are Cops Racist?" Heather Mac Donald put hard facts front and center -- and those facts devastate many a fashionable notion in the media, in politics and in academia.

One of the most popular arguments used in many different contexts is to show that blacks have been disproportionately represented among people stopped by police, arrested or imprisoned, as well as disproportionately represented among people turned down for mortgage loans or for other benefits.

Although many people regard these "disparate impact" statistics as evidence, or virtually proof, of racial discrimination, suppose that I should tell you that black basketball players are penalized by NBA referees out of all proportion to the 13 percent that blacks are in the American population.

"Wait a minute!" you might respond. "Blacks are more than just 13 percent of the players in the NBA."

Black basketball players are several times more numerous than 13 percent of all NBA players. This is especially so among the star players, who are more likely to be on the floor, rather than sitting on the bench. And players on the floor most are the ones most likely to get penalized.

The difference between the percentage of blacks in the general population and the percentage of blacks in the particular activity being discussed is the key to the fraudulent use of "disparate impact" statistics in many other contexts.

Hillary Clinton, for example, decried a "disgrace of a criminal-justice system that incarcerates so many more African-Americans proportionately than whites."

The most reliable crime statistics are statistics on murders, 52 percent of which were committed by blacks over the period from 1976 to 2005. If blacks are convicted of far more than 13 percent of all murders, does that mean that racism in the courts must be the reason?

On the benefits side, there was instant condemnation of mortgage lenders when statistics showed blacks being turned down for prime mortgage loans in 2000 at twice the rate that whites were turned down.

Seldom, if ever, did the media report that whites were turned down at nearly twice the rate that Asian Americans were turned down -- or that Asian Americans' average credit scores were higher than the average credit scores of whites, which were higher than the average credit scores of blacks.

Such facts would have spoiled the prevailing preconceptions. Many facts reported in "The War on Cops" spoil many notions that all too many people choose to believe. We need to stop this nonsense, before there is a race war that no one can win.

Israel’s Phantom Isolation

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