Undeservedly forgotten

April 4, 2010

At baldilocks, Juliette Ochieng tells the story of real African-American heroes, men who served in the House of Representatives during Reconstruction:

In the immediate aftermath of the American Civil War and during what is known as the Reconstruction period, sixteen black American men—several of them former slaves–served in the US House of Representatives with most being from states of the former Confederacy.  All were quite literate and some were self-educated.  What is certain is that these men saw hardship and racism that most of us 21st century brats of all colors cannot begin to conjure.

What is also certain is that each of these men were Republicans and for a very good reason: the Democrat Party of that time was the self-described Party of Slavery and remained the Party of Black Oppression long after.  (Arguably, this legacy continues.)

Linked here are the fascinating biographies of each congressman and some of the speeches the men gave during the debates for the Civil Rights Act of 1871—also known as the Ku Klux Klan Act—and the  Civil Rights Act of 1875.

The site linked is called Neglected Voices and the voices of these men have indeed been neglected but the title is so…weak.  These men were anything but weak, hence the title of this post.  I’m sure, however, that they’ve been spinning in their graves of late at the words and deeds of those for whom they set precedent.

These men didn’t have to invent tales of racial epithets hurled or of racial violence; such were their constant companions throughout their lives.  Yet they did more than muddle through life, they soared.  These were real men, not victims; our current crop of representatives looks microscopic next to them.

It’s sad that men like these are largely forgotten, but hucksters and race-baiters like Jeremiah Wright and Jesse Jackson are lionized.

(via Ed Driscoll)

RELATED READING: Wrong on Race – the Democratic Party’s buried past.


Greenpeace reveals its inner fascist thug

April 4, 2010

One sign of a fanatic is that he can’t handle serious disagreement: rather than continue with a rational argument, he threatens violence to intimidate his opponents into silence. You know, fanatics like Greenpeace members:

Emerging battle-bruised from the disaster zone of Copenhagen, but ever-hopeful, a rider on horseback brought news of darkness and light: “The politicians have failed. Now it’s up to us. We must break the law to make the laws we need: laws that are supposed to protect society, and protect our future. Until our laws do that, screw being climate lobbyists. Screw being climate activists. It’s not working. We need an army of climate outlaws.”

The proper channels have failed. It’s time for mass civil disobedience to cut off the financial oxygen from denial and skepticism.

If you’re one of those who believe that this is not just necessary but also possible, speak to us. Let’s talk about what that mass civil disobedience is going to look like.

If you’re one of those who have spent their lives undermining progressive climate legislation, bankrolling junk science, fueling spurious debates around false solutions, and cattle-prodding democratically-elected governments into submission, then hear this:

We know who you are. We know where you live. We know where you work.

And we be many, but you be few.

(Emphasis added)

Unable to deal with empirical evidence that contradicts his precious faith, willfully blind to the inability of his sacred computer models to predict anything or even account for the past, holding his hands to his ears and screaming NONONONONONO!!! when confronted with indisputable proof of, at least, sloppy science or, at worst, out and out corruption in the Cult of Anthropogenic Global Warming, all “Gene from Greenpeace” can do is threaten physical violence.

This isn’t science and it’s not a quest for truth or even what’s best for all. No, it’s an arrogance and hubris born of a belief that a tiny group knows the collective good, even if the individuals of that “collective” disagree. If they continue to disagree, then those recalcitrant “deniers” have to be silenced by threats or even direct action. It’s a common trait among “progressive activists.”

In a word, it’s fascism.

Greenpeace needs to cut ties with all its “Genes,” now, if it wants to retain any respectability. If it doesn’t, then remember that the next time they come asking for money.

(via James Delingpole)


Of public unions and state debt

April 4, 2010

Following up on this post, the Washington Examiner’s David Freddoso writes about a study done by the Cato Institute (PDF) that shows a strong positive correlation between the size of public-sector unions and per-capita state debt:

There are hundreds of reasons why states accrue debt. In some cases, it has to do with special programs they pursue. (See RomneyCare.) In others, it has to do with their method of taxation.

But the states with the highest per-capita debt all have something in common: Robust public-sector unions that have, over the years, cut sweetheart deals with politicians — usually, but not always, Democrats.

In the graph below, each blue square represents a state (some are labeled), plotted by its per-capita debt and the percentage of state and municipal workers in public sector unions.

(Click the graph for a larger view)

I’m not sure what the answer is to this problem, but a major problem it is because of both the corrupting influence unions wield over state officials anxious for campaign donations and the increasingly underfunded and over-generous pension systems. Something has to give somewhere, but, if human nature is a guide, it probably won’t until states start going bankrupt.


A president in need of therapy? – Updated

April 4, 2010

Roger L. Simon thinks President Obama has a serious personality disorder:

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I found Anne Kornblut’s report in the Washington Post — “Obama’s 17-minute, 2,500-word response to woman’s claim of being ‘over-taxed’” — to be deeply disturbing. Although I disagree with most of Barack Obama’s policies, I took no pleasure in seeing a political opponent wound himself by talking on and on to the point of agitating his audience. The situation is much too grave for that. This is our country — all of us, Republican, Democrat and Independent. And I am now convinced of what I have long suspected — the United States has a president with a serious personality disorder.

Now I admit I am not a professional psychiatrist or psychologist, nor do I see myself even remotely as a paragon of mental health, but I have made a decent living for over thirty years as a fiction writer whose stock in trade is perforce studying people and this is one strange dude. He makes Richard Nixon seem almost normal.

I’m not sure I’d go that far. While I’m not even as qualified as a fiction writer to decide if someone is nuts, I do think Obama is a callow, brittle egotist and narcissist* who cannot handle challenges to his authority, and his lack of qualifications for the office have only exposed those qualities as he deals with the curve balls it throws him daily.

Given the state of the world, one can only hope he develops some humility and a thicker skin, soon.

*(Of course, there is such a thing as Narcissistic Personality Disorder, so maybe Roger’s right.)

UPDATE: Meanwhile, Ed Driscoll takes Roger’s comparison of Obama and Nixon and looks at the differing (and extreme) attitudes the media held toward each – All The President’s Yes Men.