Thursday, July 28, 2016

Mass immigration and the refugee crisis

Trump said in a speech recently that Hillary Clinton wants “a 500 percent increase in Syrians refugees”. Politifact, a left-leaning "fact checker" determined this to be "mostly true" (Politifact is corrupt and untrustworthy, but they are biased to the left, so if they say it's true, you can believe it). Trump says we should put the brakes on until we figure out "what's going on". I agree with Trump.

This issue is somewhat related to the broader issue of immigration. This post is mostly an emotional appeal for reason and sanity. I think that we should slow down, and reduce immigration from all countries. For an introduction to the topic, I recommend these two short, fact-based videos: Immigration by the Numbers (about rates of immigration to the U.S. and changes that it brings about), and Immigration, World Poverty and Gumballs, (about immigration as a means for humanitarian good).

Trump is also right when he says that our current policies are completely out of control. One lesson we can draw from the first video is that when deciding policy, Congress never seriously considers public opinion. And, the numbers have always trended upwards, despite the fact that the majority of Americans, when polled, prefer decreased immigration.

This is a vitally important issue for our future, and our children's future. Most people who are opposed to increasing immigration and refugee settlement, view this issue as being such a no-brainer, that their preferred talking point is, "Are you fucking kidding me?"

Now, before you accuse me of doing a Trump, let me say, unequivocally, that most immigrants to this country are wonderful. I love immigrants! The topics here are different; so you must remove your mainstream media goggles that turn every mention of a distinct population group into a racist nazi dogwhistle. The main questions addressed by policy are: the number of immigrants per year, and what is the selection process.  Now, the selection process, like it not, inherently (tautologically) prefers some groups of immigrant over others. Some might tell you that the 1965 immigration law removed discriminatory barriers. But in practice the result was simply to discriminate in favor of countries closer geographically. That is why a large plurality of today's immigrants come from Mexico.

The question implied at the top of this post is whether or not we should admit large numbers of refugees from countries that are known as the source of terrorists. These are countries that have, by our standards, authoritarian cultures. There is clear evidence, despite the attempts by the German government and media, that the large influx of these refugees made the locales where they settled less safe for the existing residents. Many refugees have committed brutal murders, rapes, other violent crimes. In some public spaces, for another example, pickpocketing gangs have completely taken over, preying on tourists, and making enjoyment of those spaces impossible. There are tremendous problems with integrating these newly arrived people. The decision by Merkel to invite millions of these refugees doesn't seem to have been the result of a rational, deliberative process.

And in fact, I have yet to hear anyone raise a single valid justification for a policy of putting your fellow citizens at risk of being the victims of rape, murder, and other crimes, by forcing them to live next to newly arrived people from authoritarian cultures.

In an online discussion we were having, a friend wrote that the way he sees it, an "arbitrary" (small) increase in crime is offset by the good that is done by freeing people from having to live in the midst of genocide.

There are many reasons why this argument falls short.

First: while this might be true from a moral perspective, it doesn't pass the "democracy test". This is like a religious belief -- there's no way to argue its truth or falsity; either it comports with your morals, or it doesn't.  Therefore, it's irrelevant from the standpoint of government policy. Nobody, not any common citizen, nor Merkel, nor any government official or agency has the right to make this decision based on their own sense of moral rectitude, and not even consider the wishes of all of the citizens who would be affected. Government are obliged to serve the citizens.

As analogy, imagine that we lived in a group home with strict rules for vetting new residents. One day, a resident named Bob decided that a particular panhandler's suffering was so bad that we could waive the rules, and invite him to live with us immediately. So, the next day, Bob brings the man, and he moves right in.

[I hated writing this next paragraph, because it's a naked appeal to your base instincts. But after deliberating with myself a bit, I think it's not only fair, but necessary. Events like this do occur, and if the risk is real, and if you're going to opine on a policy question, then it's incumbent on you to have your eyes open. And after all,  don't we even teach children to be wary of strangers? To recognize the importance of that, but then deny that it could happen with a refugee, is a dangerous hypocrisy.]

We know nothing about our new roommate, and he might, for example, have a mental illness that makes him dangerous. If, for whatever reason, he were to kill one of my children, then ... I guess you can imagine how angry I'd be at Bob.

I can tell you that it wouldn't matter a damn how bad the panhandler's living conditions were. Humans are animals, and we have instincts, and one of our strongest instincts is to protect our families. I know I am hopeless non-progressive, but that's an instinct I subscribe to.

But, perhaps more importantly, there are other ways to help people that don't involve inviting them to live with us. This is true both for the panhandler analogy, and with most refugees. We should be looking for those, because, if you watched the videos above, you know that we will never be able to put a dent in the humanitarian crises which are looming in front of, by inviting them to live here. It's completely unsustainable.

The group home is a good analogy, because Merkel's million, last year, completely overwhelmed the Germans' system for vetting refugees, so they let thousands in without much vetting at all. Now, put yourself in the shoes of a father of one of the girls who was raped last New Year's Eve. Or, imagine that one of your children got murdered by a refugee. Then, let's say, in your grief you finally decided to read some different websites, and you learned that not only
are the crime rates of Muslim refugees significantly higher than the average population, but also that your government systematically hides the truth and
covers up their crimes. How would it make you feel that your own government thinks that the new Muslim arrivals' right to not feel insulted outweighs the right of your child to live?

It's fine and good for anyone to feel a humanitarian urge, and a desire to help the people of the world who are less fortunate than we are. Those are wonderful sentiments, and I feel them too. But our government's first duty is to the citizens of the country. There is no "human right" to immigrate, and our government has no mandate to put the interests of foreigners above the interests of our citizens. And, while you would certainly call them bigots, not all of your fellow citizens share those humanitarian urges, and that is their right. Call it xenophobia if you want, but (so far) xenophobia is not a crime. Who are you to say that your moral framework is superior? And, so superior that you get to dictate the policy that affects everyone. Isn't that the worst kind of hubris?

Finally, I believe that history is on my side. Countries and borders exist for a reason. Our species has a gruesome and violent history, and walls were built by our ancestors for defense. Nation states all have borders, primarily to keep their citizens safe while they toil, struggle, and raise children. I can recommend the book "Better Angels of Our Nature", by Steven Pinker, to learn something of the appallingly cruel and violent history of our species. You would get a clearer understanding of how amazingly lucky we are that we have been born and live in a time and place of extraordinary, unprecedented peace. Just the fact that common people like us can walk around and play outside, with our children, without having to fear for our lives, is unique in almost all of history.

Our ancestors suffered, worked and fought to build a civilization, and countries with borders to protect that civilization, and they bequeathed this precious, fragile gift to us.

There's no doubt that some of them committed crimes against other people or races, but I categorically reject the notion that we should atone for sins, real or hypothetical, that some of our ancestors committed hundreds of years ago, by destroying the best, most valuable thing that they created.

We have lived out our lives on a tiny island of peace in a vast ocean of cruelty and blood. None of us has any idea what that ocean is like. Those pushing for more immigration are engaging in a colossally irresponsible experiment. They have good intentions, and they have faith and hope, but that's all. Good intentions, faith, and hope, quite simply, do not justify putting this priceless, shared heirloom in danger. That's what this experiment does.

A chorus of angry voices is begging them to stop and think, but they insist that it's everyone's moral duty to go along with them.

This heirloom has been handed down for hundreds of generations, improved and protected by millions of lives, and without it, mankind has no hope. In fact, it was not a gift; it was merely loaned to us. We have been entrusted with it, to keep it safe until it's our turn to pass it to our children.

I know it sounds old-fashioned, but we, especially those of us with children, have a sacred duty to guard and protect, with all of our will, strength and effort, this thing that we have been entrusted with. Because it's a shared responsibility, all of
us must have humility and a bit of deference to history.

Instead, liberals imagine themselves to be so enlightened that they've suddenly discovered, after all these centuries, that borders were a bad idea. With breathtaking hubris, they have determined to break our shared treasure asunder,
while muttering contempt at our ancestors, and spitting in the faces of us and anyone who urges caution. We, their fellow citizens, are forced to watch in mute horror while they destroy the thing that we love the most, and that protected and nurtured all of us, and most of our friends and family, for our entire lives.

John Stewart upbraids us, telling us we don't own the country. It's not ours to keep. There never was a real America.

He is right that it's not ours, and we never claimed it was. But he couldn't be more wrong in his next utterance: it is ours to keep. We must keep it, protect it and defend it until it's our turn to pass it on. Stewart would have us believe that this fictional America not only isn't ours to keep, but is his to destroy.

It's hard for me to imagine a deeper betrayal than this reckless experiment. I'm sure a lot of readers won't agree with me, but I hope that I've been able to communicate why we get so angry about this issue. If so, please keep this in mind the next time you hear the lying media disparage Trump for his "heated rhetoric", and follow that with a smug, contemptuous politician lecturing us on morals, and scolding us with "That's not who we are."

Mass immigration and the refugee crisis

Trump said in a speech recently that Hillary Clinton wants “a 500 percent increase in Syrians refugees”. Politifact, a left-leaning "fact checker" determined this to be "mostly true" (Politifact is corrupt and untrustworthy, but they are biased to the left, so if they say it's true, you can believe it). Trump says we should put the brakes on until we figure out "what's going on". I agree with Trump.

This issue goes hand-in-hand, somewhat, with the broader issue of immigration. In this post, I'll argue that we should slow down, and reduce immigration from all countries. If you haven't seen them before, I recommend these two short, fact-based videos for an introduction: Immigration by the Numbers, which presents the changes in the numbers of immigrants that the U.S. takes in each year, and Immigration, World Poverty and Gumballs, which addresses the question of immigration as a humanitarian effort.

I agree when Trump says that our current policies are completely out of control. And if you're tempted to say, about the current plans for refugee resettlement, for example, that the current levels are sustainable, then keep in mind the lesson from the first video about: the number only ever seem to go up, and Congress never seriously considers public opinion in deciding these levels. They are at the whim of whomever is paying them.

This is a vitally important issue for our future. Most people who are opposed to increasing the number view this issue as being such a no-brainer, that their preferred talking point is, "Are you fucking kidding me?" Refugees from Muslim countries, which have, generally, authoritarian societies and cultures, are making the countries and locales that they move to less safe for the existing residents. Many have committed brutal sex crimes and other violence, including murder, and in some public spaces, pickpocketing gangs have taken over. There are tremendous problems with integrating these large numbers of newly arrived people, and there doesn't seem to have been a rationale process for deciding this policy.

In fact, I have yet to hear anyone raise a single valid justification for a policy of putting your fellow citizens at risk for rape, murder, and other crimes, by forcing them to live next to newly arrived people from authoritarian cultures.

In an online discussion we were having, a friend of mine recently wrote that the way he sees it, an "arbitrary" (by which I think he means small) increase in crime is offset by the good that is done by freeing people from having to live in the midst of genocide.

There are many reasons why this argument fails.

First: nobody, not any common citizen, nor Merkel, nor any government official or agency has the right to make this decision unilaterally, regardless of the wishes of all of the citizens who would be affected.

As analogy, imagine that we lived in a group home with strict rules for vetting new residents. One day, a resident named Bob decided that a particular panhandler's suffering was so bad that we could waive the rules, and invite him to live with us immediately. So, the next day, Bob brings the man, and he moves right in.

[I hated writing this next paragraph, because it feels like an unfair appeal to our base instincts. But after thinking about it, I determined that it's not only fair, but necessary, to bring home my point.]

If that guy killed one of my little boys while they were sleeping, or if he raped my wife when she was walking down the hall, well ... I guess you can imagine how angry I'd be at Bob.

I can tell you that it wouldn't matter a damn how bad the panhandler's living conditions were before. Humans are animals, and we have instincts, and one of the strongest is to protect our families. I know I am hopeless non-progressive, but that's an instinct I don't mind subscribing to. And, more importantly, there are other ways to help people that don't include inviting them to live with us. We should be looking for those, because inviting refugees to live here is probably the least cost-effective way to help them. If you want a policy to ease your own feelings of guilt, then inviting refugees here to live might make sense, but if you were really interested in helping them, in vaster greater numbers, and in the
long term, then you would support something else.

The group home is a good analogy, because Merkel's millions, last year, completely overwhelmed the Germans' system for vetting refugees, so they let thousands in without much vetting at all. Now, put yourself in the shoes of a father of one of the girls who was raped last New Year's Eve. Or, imagine that one of your children got murdered by a refugee. Then, let's say, in your grief you finally decided to read some different websites, and you learned that not only
are the crime rates of Muslim refugees significantly higher than the average population, but also that your government systematically hides the truth and
covers up their crimes. How would it make you feel that your own government thinks that the new Muslim arrivals' right to not feel insulted outweighs the right of your child to live?

It's fine and good for anyone to feel a humanitarian urge, and a desire to help the people of the world who are less fortunate than we are. Those are wonderful sentiments, and I feel them too. But our government's first duty is to the citizens of the country. There is no "human right" to immigrate, and our government has no mandate to put the interests of foreigners above the interests of our citizens. And, while you would certainly call them bigots, not all of your fellow citizens share those humanitarian urges, and that is their right. Call it xenophobia if you want, but (so far) xenophobia is not a crime. Who are you to say that your moral framework is superior? And, so superior that you get to dictate the policy that affects everyone. Isn't that the worst kind of hubris?

Finally, I believe that history is on my side. Countries and borders exist for a reason. Our species has a gruesome and violent history, and walls were built by our ancestors for defense. Nation states all have borders, primarily to keep their citizens safe while they toil, struggle, and raise children. I can recommend the book "Better Angels of Our Nature", by Steven Pinker, to learn something of the appallingly cruel and violent history of our species. You would get a clearer understanding of how amazingly lucky we are that we have been born and live in a time and place of extraordinary, unprecedented peace. Just the fact that common people like us can walk around and play outside, with our children, without having to fear for our lives, is unique in almost all of history.

Our ancestors suffered, worked and fought to build a civilization, and countries with borders to protect that civilization, and they bequeathed this precious, fragile gift to us.

There's no doubt that some of them committed crimes against other people or races, but I categorically reject the notion that we should atone for sins, real or hypothetical, that some of our ancestors committed hundreds of years ago, by destroying the best, most valuable thing that they created.

We have lived out our lives on a tiny island of peace in a vast ocean of cruelty and blood. None of us has any idea what that ocean is like. Those pushing for more immigration are engaging in a colossally irresponsible experiment. They have good intentions, and they have faith and hope, but that's all. Good intentions, faith, and hope, quite simply, do not justify putting this priceless, shared heirloom in danger. That's what this experiment does.

A chorus of angry voices is begging them to stop and think, but they insist that it's everyone's moral duty to go along with them.

This heirloom has been handed down for hundreds of generations, improved and protected by millions of lives, and without it, mankind has no hope. In fact, it was not a gift; it was merely loaned to us. We have been entrusted with it, to keep it safe until it's our turn to pass it to our children.

I know it sounds old-fashioned, but we, especially those of us with children, have a sacred duty to guard and protect, with all of our will, strength and effort, this thing that we have been entrusted with. Because it's a shared responsibility, all of
us must have humility and a bit of deference to history.

Instead, liberals imagine themselves to be so enlightened that they've suddenly discovered, after all these centuries, that borders were a bad idea. With breathtaking hubris, they have determined to break our shared treasure asunder,
while muttering contempt at our ancestors, and spitting in the faces of us and anyone who urges caution. We, their fellow citizens, are forced to watch in mute horror while they destroy the thing that we love the most, and that protected and nurtured all of us, and most of our friends and family, for our entire lives.

John Stewart upbraids us, telling us we don't own the country. It's not ours to keep. There never was a real America.

He is right that it's not ours, and we never claimed it was. But he couldn't be more wrong in his next utterance: it is ours to keep. We must keep it, protect it and defend it until it's our turn to pass it on. Stewart would have us believe that this fictional America not only isn't ours to keep, but is his to destroy.

It's hard for me to imagine a deeper betrayal than this reckless experiment. I'm sure a lot of readers won't agree with me, but I hope that I've been able to communicate why we get so angry about this issue. If so, please keep this in mind the next time you hear the lying media disparage Trump for his "heated rhetoric", and follow that with a smug, contemptuous politician lecturing us on morals, and scolding us with "That's not who we are."

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Mass immigration: the long-term strategy of the Democrats

Introduction: the Gumball video

For context, if you haven't seen it before, please watch the short "gumball video", linked to below. Before you click through, I would also request that you try to suspend your disbelief until you've read this whole blog post. That is, if you find yourself objecting that something couldn't possibly be true, before you jump to Google to try to debunk it, hold that urge, and reframe it as a hypothetical. Ask yourself, “What if this were true?”

The reason for this request is simple. [Suspension of disbelief should start now.] The vast majority of sources of news and information on this politically charged topic are hopelessly biased in favor of mass immigration, and the sources you will find, that you thought were reliable, like the New York Times, or CNN, are hopelessly corrupt.

I hope that by the time you've finished reading this post, that you will at least have a seed of doubt in your mind. Hopefully you will start to see the lies for yourself.

Here is the “gumball video”: World Poverty, Immigration, and Gumballs.

Electing a new people

In 1953, Bertold Brecht wrote the poem “The Solution”, about a failed uprising that had just occurred in East Germany.

The Solution

After the uprising of the 17th of June
The Secretary of the Writers' Union
Had leaflets distributed in the Stalinallee
Stating that the people
Had forfeited the confidence of the government
And could win it back only
By redoubled efforts. Would it not be easier
In that case for the government
To dissolve the people
And elect another?

For several decades the Democratic party (perhaps intentionally, perhaps not) has been promoting massive, unsustainable immigration, mostly of unskilled workers who accept low wages and fill jobs that could otherwise be filled by our current citizens (albeit, perhaps, at greater expense).

This policy is not good for U.S. citizens, but in the current political climate, we are not even allowed to discuss it, for fear of being branded racist. Rather than engage, discuss, and try to rebut the objections, the response is to insult and smear the one who dares question the prevailing ideology.

So, if it's not good for U.S. citizens, who is it good for? One group that clearly benefits is the Democratic party itself. Recent immigrants vote overwhelmingly for Democrats. We often hear how the demographics of the country are changing. But, rarely do we hear these two facts linked together in any news story. But mass immigration is a choice. It's a plank in the party platform. Isn't it possible that the main reason for it is that it's part of a strategy to dissolve the people of the U.S., and elect another?

In fact, on some occasions in the past, party operatives have let their guard down and admitted this, pretty clearly.

Mass immigration wasn’t exclusively a Democratic policy; the Bush administration and his cronies did the same thing. On this issue, Democrats and traditional Republicans are indistinguishable, except for the fact that Democrats stood to gain politically.

The following are examples of Democrats openly discussing the benefits of mass immigration and consequent demographic shift, with reference to strategy considerations, and how mass immigration could help elect more Democrats.

Article: Why The Democratic Party – Not Just The GOP – Has An Immigration Problem

Online here; Zoltan Hajnal, University of California, San Diego, December, 2014

This is a remarkably candid and clear exploration of the pros and cons of continued mass immigration, insofar as it would help elect more Democrats.

Although this talks about the “fears of white voters”, it just treats them as pawns. Conspicuously absent is any consideration of those fears, or whether they are justified. That is, not a single drop of ink is wasted on the notion that mass immigration might not be in the interests of our fellow citizens, who happen to be white (of course, it's not just whites that are adversely affected by mass immigration; but Hajnal doesn't mention other groups).

In contrast, they do seem very concerned about the well-being and interests of the foreigners who have come to this country illegally.

What can the Democratic Party do? The trade-offs are difficult.

  • Shifting to the right on immigration might win back some white voters, but would be unsavory to many liberals and could dampen support from Latinos and Asian Americans, many of whom continue to have no strong connection to either party.
  • The Democratic Party could simply wait to benefit from changing racial demographics….
  • Actively reaching out to law-abiding immigrants is the option President Obama seems to be following…. The vast majority of the undocumented have committed no crime other than crossing the border….

Under the right circumstances, actively embracing new immigrants can be politically helpful. For example, Democrats in California made major gains after opposing early 1990s measures to cut public services to undocumented immigrants.

[Emphasis added.]

Yes, it is true that California is effectively a one-party state now. Soon, America will be too.

Story: Dem strategists: Obama bungled 2010

Online here; David Catanese, Politico, 11/18/10,

Reporting on the thoughts of a couple of strategists regarding an upcoming election:

But both Carville and Greenberg, who jointly founded Democracy Corps, painted a rosier picture of Obama’s electoral future in 2012, mainly because of the country’s rapidly changing demographics.

Declining to pinpoint a Republican favorite, Carville said any GOP presidential candidate would be forced to “double-down on older whites” — a strategy that becomes less reliable each cycle.

“When you get into a presidential electorate, it decidedly favors Democrats, and every year it’s going to decidedly favor them more and more,” Carville said. “Demographics don’t do anything but get better for Democrats. Every election becomes less white.”

Carville is gloating. Immigration levels have been high throughout the Obama administration.

Story: Wasserman-Schultz hits Walker, ‘ultra-wealthy’ in first appearance

Online here; Byron Tau, Ben Smith Blog, 04/05/11

In this blog post, DWS didn’t describe immigration as a strategy, but does boast about the how it will benefit Democrats. Given that in her position, she is one of the architects of the platform, this is pretty damning.

“But if you look at the demographics,” she said, “Republicans haven’t exactly embraced Hispanic voters.”

“I think a lot of the districts will have more higher Latino populations than we saw in the last census. I think the Hispanic vote is going to be a significant factor in the next election,” said the Florida congresswoman. “I think we’re in great shape.”

Conclusion

I know that these posts don't quite measure up to a smoking gun, but the facts are that every policy maker for the Democratic party knows that immigrants overwhelmingly vote for Democrats. So, at the very least, that will bias them in the direction of open borders.

If you're just coming to this post from a Google search or some other link, and haven't familiarized yourself with the immigration issue before, then I would like to ask how much of this information is new to you? I'd wager that for most people, the answer would be "all of it". I haven't heard much informed debate on this issue, and given that Trump launched his campaign with this as his signature issue, would it be nice to have that debate? If the information in the gumball video were true, and especially if the Democrats are implementing a strategy to replace the U.S. citizens with a different set voters, and if the main-stream media really were committed to operating for the public good (that's the biggest "if"), then shouldn't they be writing about this every day?

The fact that they are not suggests that either all of this is complete bullshit, or else ... wait for it ... the media is lying to you. That's something you'll have to decide on your own.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Responses to a Michael Moore's "5 Reasons Trump will win"

Here are some of my reactions to an article that just came out in the Huffington Post, 5 Reasons Trump will win, by Michael Moore.

Moore wrote, speaking to the good people who think like he does:
Unfortunately, ... you and your friends are convinced the American people are not going to elect an idiot for president.
My, how they love to make fun of the Donald. I'm convinced that a lot of the opposition to Trump comes from the fact that people just don't like him personally. I don't like him very much either -- he's not the kind of guy I could be friends with. He's a glad-hander, salesman type, and a bit of a bully. Never backing down and never apologizing seems to be part of his philosophy for life, but I'd have more respect for him if he'd apologized to Cruz for attacking his Cruz' wife and father. OTOH, I love that he doesn't apologize for most of the non-PC things he's said. The media loves to bring people to their knees, but even when they succeed, nobody ever forgives or forgets.

And though he's brash, I don't think he's nearly as bad as the media makes him out to be. This fucking main-stream media are incredibly adept at manipulating people's hate. They hone in on the aspects of Trump that I just described, and find the ways that people are predisposed to hate him, and they play on those things, and exaggerate and reinforce them in people's minds. Then the social media mockery and echo chamber and one-upmanship takes over, and does the rest. Look at how much play Jon Stewart's recent TV appearance got. A little innuendo here, some sarcasm there, and he's got everybody in the tribe feeling superior to Trump and all of his supporters. It's a form of brainwashing. Of course all media outlets do it, both liberal and conservative, but the difference is that the liberals have a lock on the big media outlets, TV channels, university bullhorns, and even social media platforms. And if, despite this lock, Trump is still doing as well as he is, then he must have a message that resonates.
....And then you listen to Hillary and you behold our very first female president, someone the world respects,
Ahem. Not sure about "the world respects" part.
... someone who is whip-smart and cares about kids,
Trump doesn't care about kids?
... who will continue the Obama legacy because that is what the American people clearly want!
What the American people want is not so clear. It depends on the issue. Most Americans clearly want a saner immigration policy.

In this article, Moore left out one important reason to oppose Clinton. It's not just her support for the Iraq war, but her overall record on foreign policy, especially when she was Secretary of State, is abysmal. Trump got this right in his speech. Look at the state of the middle east today. A lot of the blame for how terrible things are can be laid at her feet.
And if you believe Hillary Clinton is going to beat Trump with facts and smarts and logic,
Ahem. I am really looking forward to the debates.
.... The left has won the cultural wars.
This is true, and as a social liberal, I'm happy that gay marriage is legal, that women have the right to choose, and for the advances of civil rights. But I think things are going too far, now. Especially, for example, on college campuses. The civil rights struggle has morphed into a whinging contest, and I'm with Trump and his supporters on this: it's time to stop all the PC nonsense, and roll up our sleeves, and get to work.
....And if they live in poor, Black or Hispanic neighborhoods, ... it’s hard to get even 50% to turn out to vote
Low turnout is not because of artificial barriers, it's because of voter apathy.
Trump is going to focus much of his attention on the four blue states in the rustbelt of the upper Great Lakes - Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. Four traditionally Democratic states - but each of them have elected a Republican governor since 2010.
The reason for this is that the Democrats and the unions have abandoned (some would say betrayed) those rust-belt workers. I've mentioned before how the labor unions are now vocal open borders advocates, which seems to me to be against the interests of their existing members. Don't you think?
Trump is going to hammer Clinton on this and her support of TPP and other trade policies that have royally screwed the people of these four states
I'm surprised Moore admits this. His analysis of the electoral map jibes with a lot of things I've read, but I don't think it's a sure thing, at all. A lot can happen between now and then.

I expect that we'll see at least one attempt to completely destroy Trump by digging up or fabricating some horrendous scandal. The attempts so far have failed, but they'll escalate to some nuclear option before the election. In the past few weeks, I've become more and more terrified of the power and corruption of the media, in league with the politicians and the big banks. Before Obama, they had Bush, a neocon republican, doing their bidding. You can see how those neocons have fled the party and are still trying to sabotage Trump -- they would prefer Clinton, at this point. I'm convinced that these oligarchs have absolutely no scruples. They profess to care about social justice, and peace, and the plight of the poor, but it's all a ruse. They'll do whatever it takes to preserve their power.

I remember that before the Iraq war, when I used to trust it, the Washington Post was very hawkish. I believed the lies, and so I was in favor of the war, too. Now, look at how they (the media) are pushing to expand NATO and antagonize Russia. It's simply not necessary, and not in America's interests. But they attack Trump when he suggests that Putin is somebody he could deal with. These media companies are the dangerous war-mongers.

If, by some miracle, Trump does win, look for a coup d'etat (or maybe even an assassination) within a year or two, so that Pence will assume the presidency. I know I'm starting to sound paranoid (I just ordered my tinfoil hat) but every day I read something new that makes me question everything I've ever believed. For example, I recently read an old article by Pat Buchanan, claiming that Watergate was a coup d'etat executed by the media against Nixon. I'm not saying I'm convinced, but seeing the way these institutions collude with each other, I have to admit this theory has the ring of truth. I would like nothing better than for someone to come and debunk this theory for me, but now I don't know whom to trust. Even some of the debunkers that I used to trust, like Snopes, are pods now.
2. The Last Stand of the Angry White Man....
The opposition to Hillary is not about sexism. Maybe it tilts the white male vote by 2-3 points, but there are a lot of reasons to dislike Hillary that have nothing to do with her gender. And, I'd be willing to bet that a lot more women will vote their gender than men will. By analogy, look at how many whites voted for Obama vs. McCain (43%) or Romney (39%) ... a hell of a lot more than blacks voted for the republicans (4% and 6%, respectively). Every group except white males vote according to their "identities", a lot more than we do.
That’s a small peek into the mind of the Endangered White Male.... By then ... a fuckin’ hamster is going to be running the country.
This whole paragraph is pretty offensive, because Obama has played the race card throughout his presidency, and everyone should be angry about that. From the Henry Louis Gates controversy in 2009 all the way through to BLM, he reflexively assumes that white racism is the cause of all the problems of minorities. If I believed that were true, then maybe I'd agree with Moore. But it's simply not true.

And this, I think, is the crux of the divide. If you believe that white, male privilege is somehow keeping women and minorities down, then naturally you'll want to fight that, and that makes sense - I can understand it.

But if you don't (and I don't, and I think a lot of Trump supporters don't) then you'll conclude that not only should we stop blaming white men because it's unjust, but also because it does enormous harm to the people that you're trying to help! It's completely dysfunctional, and utterly destructive, to constantly reinforce the message that they are oppressed. Rather than learning to overcome their difficulties through hard work and determination, they will learn to blame others, feel entitled to compensation, and never learn to succeed.

That's why I hate Obama's support for BLM, for example. Try to suspend your disbelief for a second, and imagine that the reason inner city youths have trouble getting jobs is something (anything) other than white oppression. Then, how does it help them if they constantly hear, from all sides, that this is the cause? What really stirs up my ire is that Democrats and the media never even try to assume good faith, and engage with this argument. Instead, they hysterically accuse us of racism, which, of course, just widens the divide.
3. The Hillary problem ....  her vote for the Iraq war ....
Moore is right that she is a hawk. And call me naive, but I believe that Trump is not -- he's fairly consistent on this. In his acceptance speech, for example, he talked about defeating ISIS quickly (he had to have a soundbite on ISIS, it's de rigueur) but he reiterated his opposition to nation building.
4. ... picking a moderate, bland-o, middle of the road old white guy as her running mate ....
I'd just like to point out that liberals seem to highlight race and gender a lot more than Trump or his supporters. Have you noticed that?
5. The Jesse Ventura Effect. .... do not discount the electorate’s ability to .... fancy themselves as closet anarchists ...
I agree with this too! I think there are probably a lot more closet Trump voters than closet Clinton voters. I doubt it's more than 1-2 percent, but who knows?

Finally, for those of you who are voting for Clinton, I would like to ask, what is it about Trump, specifically, that prevents you from voting for him? Is it that you think he's racist? Is it his position on immigration? Do you buy the notion that he's too impetuous to have his finger on the button? Are you afraid he won't respect the constitution? Or something else?

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Why I support Trump

This response is pretty long. I started with the intention of writing something short and succinct, but I couldn't stop adding material, especially as recent events have been unfolding. I welcome responses. Bill Clinton was fond of quoting this verse from the Bible, and I try to be mindful of it:

For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

First of all, I don't love Trump. He has some major flaws. He's crass and can be a bully. Obviously he's no boy scout; he's had affairs, for instance. Among the smears he's been subject to, the one that concerns me the most is the Trump University scandal; it suggests he's not very ethical. Mike Pense was a terrible choice for running mate. (About Pence: I think it's a symptom of his "getting serious" in his campaign, by bringing in paid professional consultants, who, no doubt, told him Pense will help him get more votes from evangelicals.)

Nevertheless, Trump is, by far, the lesser of two evils.

I have voted Democratic in every presidential election since 1980. But, we are in bizarro-world now; this is such an amazing, historic election. I have the feeling like I'm watching a colossal train wreck, and just can't look away. The schism in the Republican party that Trump brought about, is truly historic. As a Democrat, I never appreciated the different factions within the Republican party. I always hated Bush, and each of the candidates that have opposed Obama, and still do. They seemed to only want tax cuts, more foreign intervention, and free trade. The republican primaries were just amazing: Trump is very popular with the "base" -- he's gotten more votes than any candidate in history, and the "establishment" universally loathes him. It illustrates just how deeply the republican party has, for decades, betrayed their base. They don't really care very much about those three issues, either.

There's a lot of cynicism everywhere, and I read a lot of negative, even vitriolic things on both sides, but I believe most people vote their conscience. I think the differences mainly come down to where people put their loyalties, and how ideological they are. But the powerful corporate entities that drive the conversation -- and I include the news media among them -- are another story. There lies the stench of corruption. And their voices are so loud, and the science of deceit is so advanced; that it feels like some of the predictions from 1984 are coming true.

Anyway, in this election, the stakes could not be higher, and we are living in bizarro-world. Up is down. Black is white. Trump, a republican, is the best candidate for the working and poor people of the country.

Think about it: all of the moneyed interests have lined up against him: the big banks and investment firms, the media conglomerates, and over half of the republican party (those that benefits most from free trade and open borders). And, here's the amazing part: not only them, but also the Democrats and the liberal main-stream media. I know this doesn't prove anything, but doesn't it give you pause? It's bizarro-world: the liberal media even boasts of how much better the Clinton money machine is than Trump's. Last election cycle, it was a race to see who could be more anti-special-interest. Now, it's just all about being anti-Trump.

So, that's enough for me to at least give him the benefit of the doubt when some negative news story comes out. And, if those baby boomer 60s radicals, who are now our powerful elites, had really learned anything in their youth, they'd remember what Timothy Leary said:

To think for yourself you must question authority and learn how to put yourself in a state of vulnerable open-mindedness, chaotic, confused vulnerability to inform yourself.

I want to drive home this point, that nearly everything you hear or read from the MSM about Trump is corrupted. They will publish something true, every once in a while, but that's just a case of "a stopped clock is right twice a day".

Journalism ethics have historically included truthfulness, accuracy, objectivity, impartiality, fairness and public accountability. For one example, the NPR mission includes "fair, accurate and comprehensive information", and "NPR is committed to providing diverse and balanced viewpoints." The NYT has a Standards and Ethics page, and their first item is "Fairness ... to cover the news as impartially as possible."

They fail, completely, utterly, and demonstrably. I sometimes post on my Facebook timeline some of the most egregious examples, but most often, they are too subtle. They never (or, very rarely) print outright lies, but everything is twisted. Once you learn to see it, you can't help but notice it everywhere.

The big media companies really do control a narrative with a ferocity that borders on rabid. Stories that contradict the narrative don't get printed. If a story is too big to ignore, they contort it until it's unrecognizable, or use any of a hundred other techniques to minimize it or control the damage.

Case in point: go through the coverage of the Ferguson debacle, day by day. One thing I remember clearly was how the story contorted after the surveillance video came out that showed Michael Brown robbing the convenience store. It was released by the Ferguson PD in a clumsy attempt to bring some balance back to the coverage, which up to that point had been completely one-sided. I guess if I had to mark any particular moment as a turning point for me politically, it was that day, because I watched in dumbfounded amazement as one story after another came out vilifying the police department for trying to smear this poor gentle giant's name! In the words of Jerry Seinfeld: "Diabolical!"

Another example, that I pointed out recently to a friend. Lately, whenever there is a mass shooting by a Muslim militant in America, the focus almost immediately shifts to gun control, rather than terrorism. I'm not opposed to gun control, but they use it as a diversion.

I could write hundreds more examples, like how they never print the name, and rarely show a picture, for the perpetrator of a black-on-white crime, but almost always do for white perps. (In fact, it's worse than that: there's a huge bias in which crimes get reported at all.) Some of these biases are etched in stone, I believe in the AP stylebook, which most mainstream outlets follow.

So, I disregard everything that the MSM says about Trump, as should you. Here's an analogy from information theory. To send a digital signal from one computer to another, you have to send a sequence of 0s and 1s. The information is encoded in that sequence. But, if you have a wire that can only send 1s, then you can't get any information through it. The news media, with regards to Trump, always, only prints negative articles. That's like a sequence of 1s. You know, whenever you go to the NYTimes site, that all of the articles will be anti-Trump -- there's no information content.

Now, I am emphatically not saying that Breitbart or Fox or any other outlet is any better, they are all horribly biased. Brietbart and Fox, however, are less skilled -- it's easier to see their bias and mistakes. And, the NYT is so arrogant on their ethics page, I think their hypocrisy is worse. And NPR, since it receives public funds, has an obligation to at least try to be representative.

Here's the dissection of a couple of incidents people trot out to prove that Trump is racist or sexist. Those are very effective slanders, so they lay them on thick.


  • The Mexican "rapists" line. If you haven't done it, go read what he really said. He was clearly making the point that the immigrants that come here to the U.S. are not "the best" -- criminals, including rapists, are overrepresented in this group. This is true. But has there been any attempt to rebut this fact? If so, I've missed it. Instead, since the moment he said it, I've heard nothing but hysterical screaming of "racist".

    Generally speaking, the well off, powerful, and elite Mexicans are better educated, have lower crime rates, and do not emigrate. And, they are only too happy to let the underclass cross the border. And, they tend to be white Europeans, rather than mestizo -- just as racist, if not more so, than U.S. whites. Mexico is taking advantage of us in many ways, but, because liberals have completely shut down the debate on this topic, we can do nothing.

    They know this, and it emboldens them more. The Mexican government actually has an organized, open campaign (they have even boasted about it) to interfere in our election. It is a government-sponsored program to encourage and train illegals to become U.S. citizens, so they can vote against Trump. And, of course, those people can remain citizens of Mexico (duel citizenship) which is an effective way to keep their loyalty. I imagine that in earlier times, these facts would have been cause for national outrage. But now, we never even hear about it.

    Why is it that people not even allowed to suggest that this kind of thing might not be in our interests, without being called racist?


  • The Judge Curiel incident is a study in hypocrisy, and the amount of cognitive dissonance some people are able to endure. Trump got in trouble for describing Curiel as "Mexican", and his suggesting that his ethnicity might influence his decisions. Well, he is a Mexican! A person's nation of origin is often used to describe that person, often three or four generations later. If you haven't had a good laugh today, read this tweet by Harry Reid, which pretty neatly sums up the whole issue. In response to a news story about McConnell refusing to condemn Trump, he wrote, "It shouldn't be hard to condemn someone for making racist comments about a Mexican judge."

    And, yes, Curiel is a member of La Raza ("the race"), and yes, that is relevant, despite pathetic attempts to "debunk" it by Snopes and the Post. They really are brilliant at smoke, mirrors, and strawmen, making much ado about how this "La Raza" wasn't the same as that "La Raza", when the sole point of bringing up his membership is that Curiel is active in promoting the interests of his identity group, Latinos, which are closely aligned with the interests of Mexicans.

    Next, so many people protest that not only is there is no justification for suggesting that Curiel's ethnicity could effect his judgement on the bench, but that it's actually (what else) racist, makes my head explode. If that's the case, then what, I would like to know, is the justification for affirmative action in the first place? Why is Sonia "wise latina" Sotomayor on the Supreme Court? You can't have it both ways: diversity is a good thing that benefits minorities, but white men aren't even allowed to suggest that it might not be in their interest.
  • The "renounce David Duke" flapdoodle was a purely contrived controversy, and I wouldn't be surprised at all to learn it was actually a planned, coordinated attack. Trump had denounced Duke on an earlier occasion, and I'd guess that this time, he just refused to play their stupid game. Watch the video of that interview, and you'll see how Trump kept trying to just change the topic, but the interviewer insisted on playing his childish game of "gotcha". The saddest thing of all is that people fell for it.

So, those are the reasons why I don't buy into the campaign of hate against Trump. What about issues?

The most visible one these days is the Black Lives Matter movement, race relations, and the war on police. You probably won't agree, but BLM is an incredibly destructive force, that's ripping our society apart. The Democrats use the movement for political gain, to consolidate support, and to reinforce the idea that Trump and all Trump supporters are racist. Anyone who has lived in China should recognize the tactic -- it's the same way the Chinese government often fans flames of anti-Japanese sentiment, to increase cohesion and to stifle dissent. And, just like that situation, it's dangerous, and can blow up in their faces, and cost lives.

Is BLM justified? Are cops racist? Are police biased against blacks, and prone to shoot them more often? According to Obama, yes. And he can quote lots of statistics to prove it. But: none of his statistics take into account the crucial fact that blacks commit crimes at disproportionately high rates. The disparity in crime rates is a fact, but one that you almost never hear from the mainstream media. And outlets that do disseminate the facts about it are denounced as racist. Can facts, by themselves, be racist?

Here are some statistics that I don't think Obama has ever mentioned, even though they come from his own administration's Bureau of Justice Statistics report from 2008:


  • From 1980 - 2008, blacks committed homicide at a rate at least eight times higher than whites.
  • While young black males have accounted for about 1% of the population from 1980 to 2008…(b)y 2008, young black males made up about a quarter of all homicide offenders (27%)

That's a huge disparity. Here is another source, one that is more controversial: The Color of Crime. I'll save you the trouble of digging: it is published by the New Century Foundation, which the SPLC lists as a hate group. But keep in mind everything I said above, and check it for yourself. Ask yourself: is it plausible? Is it professionally done? Is it consistent? The source data is all open and publicly available -- check it for yourself. In fact, I encourage you to do it, because if the publication is sound, and because it's on a topic of national importance, then the fact that it has been universally shunned by the media is powerful "smoking gun" evidence that the media is biased.

How can our government design rational public policy without considering this data? How can anyone conclude that police are racially biased, without considering differences in crime rates? It would be like trying to drive a car with only three wheels.

You are being lied to.

Leaving aside the question of what causes these disparities, the fact that they exist is irrefutable. Furthermore, it is not possible that Obama doesn't know this. He is very smart, this issue is dear to him, and his own agency produced these numbers. He is deliberately misleading the public. If Heather MacDonald is right (and I think she is) the cops are not only not racist, but in fact a little bit biased in favor of blacks.

That makes Obama responsible for the deaths of at least nine police officers. And, what really makes my blood boil as I write this is the sheer audacity of his betrayal, because it's not just cops, he has betrayed the very people that BLM is supposed to be helping: the poor, urban blacks. The Ferguson effect is real. Crime is up over 100% this year in some cities. I've been writing and saying the same thing since Ferguson, and I'm really losing my patience with all my liberal friends. People are dying, and it's time to wake the fuck up.

The way that liberals wantonly sling around the "racist" epithet (a harsh slander which can and does destroy people's lives) is pernicious and evil itself. As a debate tactic, it's right up there with a three-year old covering his ears and screaming. I guess they want some grown-up to come and drag the monster away. Unfortunately, even if that happens, reality remains.

It's worse than that. It doesn't end with dead cops and (thousands of) dead young blacks. If it's true that the cops are not racist, then that would mean that just about every action by the Justice Department since this has all began, was based on a lie. For example, all of this "National Initiative for Building Truth and Justice". If you can see past the doublespeak on those pages, it should be clear to you what this is: a massive new federal bureaucracy to take over state and local police departments all across the country. A massive federal government overreach, tantamount to taking over local police forces. Few people appreciate this, I think, but the Federal government has been encroaching on the power of the states, gradually, since 9/11 (probably longer than that). Historically, the states provided an important part of the balance of powers, protecting its citizens from a potential federalized police state. Now, though, I think we have a real cause for alarm.

Nowadays, it seems like almost every policy issue gets so warped by the media that even reasonable statements immediately evoke hysterical denunciations. For example, calling a pause in Muslim immigration, or (as he later changed it to) countries that have a history of its people committing terrorist acts against us, until we can "figure out what's going on". The left is so freaked out by the racist implications of this that any rational discussion is completely off the table. But I considered these talking points to be pretty reasonable/rational:


  • There is no civil right to immigrate to the U.S. There just isn't.
  • Most Islamic countries really do have repressive cultures, and it's the height of naivety to believe that people coming here from those cultures would not bring some of those ideas and practices with them,
  • Yes, despite a concerted effort to obfuscate and bury the statistics, there really has been a disproportionate number of terrorist attacks from people that are first or second generation immigrants from Muslim countries.
  • I know it's heretical to say, but our immigration policy should be designed to benefit the people who are here now, not all the other 6.7 billion people in the world, and definitely not big business (who wants cheap labor).
  • If you think it's our humanitarian duty to take in refugees, or that it's just a temporary crisis, then you are in for a shock. You should watch this gumball video.
  • The folks who suggest that this is just a temporary humanitarian crisis are lying. The U.N. World Population Prospects report, 2015, estimates the world will add another 4 billion people by 2100, with almost all of that growth coming from the world's poorest countries. Look at the migration patterns now, and the trends are unmistakable. This is just the beginning of an ever-growing tsunami of immigration with no end in sight. I am worried about global warming (another strike against Trump, I admit). One powerful line from the trailer of Al Gore's movie, "Inconvenient Truth" was: "Think of the impact of a couple 100,000 refugees, and then imagine 100 million". That number is way too low. We really need to be thinking more in terms of 2-3 billion. Think about that for a minute.
  • Unless strong AI comes along pretty soon to solve all our problems, this is going to mean human suffering on inconceivable scales. The U.S. and other rich countries can and should help, but not by bringing them all here. Of course I'm motivated partly by fear (any sane person would be) but those numbers will completely outstrip our ability to stay economically viable, and the end result would be a worldwide Malthusian catastrophe. Our only hope is to limit immigration, keep our heads above water, and help those countries as best we can. I don't know the solution, but we've got to get past screaming "racist" at each other, so that real solutions can be discussed. We're talking about on the order of a billion people starving or dying of horrible diseases, and political correctness just has to go.

Some people argue that a Malthusian catastrophe won't happen. In 1968, Paul Ehrlich predicted it was imminent, and Julian Simon famously bet him that it wasn't; that after a decade, all measures of production would be up. Simon won, and that's often trotted out as proof that the Malthusian doomsayers are wrong.

But, the problem with that line of reasoning is that Simon's "cornucopian" theory depends on continuing technological progress, whereas, progress in many areas has stagnated. If you look around, you can already see the unmistakeable effects of the human population outstripping the planet's ability to accommodate us.

Okay, I didn't expect to write all that. Got carried away, maybe -- but it's stuff that I think about. And, I think it explains why I am sick to death hearing about rich college kids who need safe spaces to be protected from bad people who to talk about real issues. Our planet is on the brink, and nobody seems to realize what the priorities are.

Back to Trump: I thought he was at his finest in his speech after Orlando, where he laid out the talking points I mentioned above, about restricting immigration. I have yet to hear anybody from the left try to rebut his arguments in any rational way.

In contrast, if Hillary becomes president, I guarantee you we will see:


  • More strife between the races
  • More unqualified students admitted to college, further eroding our (still salvageable) higher education system
  • Massive *increases* in immigration over already unprecedented levels.
  • More intrusion of the Federal government into everybody's lives
  • Real incomes of everyone go down
  • Massive unemployment among the middle and lower classes (with increased immigration and automation, this is reaching a real tipping point)

That's all for now!!

Sunday, July 3, 2016

You, too, Snopes?

I've been really saddened to learn that Snopes.com, a sight that I've trusted in the past, has, like so many others, allowed political biases to destroy their credibility.

Here's a letter I wrote to them a couple of days ago, regarding this article, McDonald's Marine Attack. I haven't heard back, yet.



I'm writing to complain about this article: http://www.snopes.com/marine-attack-blm-claim/. I'm wondering if you would consider retracting. The way it is written now, it comes across as a broad indictment of news outlets for sloppy reporting. I've just looked over the references, and I think that not only is this not warranted, but that it's horribly misleading, in a way that your organization is (I thought) dedicated to combat.

Consider:

Your article begins, "written entirely from information provided by Marquez himself (supplemented by information obtained by The Daily Caller from police and the McDonald's ...)". This wording is misleading at best. The fact is that the article was written based on information from the victim, the police, and the McDonald's. Also (you left out) credit card records. That seems sufficiently sourced, to me. What other avenues of investigation do you think they should have pursued?

You wrote, "The Washington Post appeared to be largely alone in independently verifying Marquez's account". But that is manifestly false, as the Daily Caller checked his story against the other sources I just mentioned.

Your article stresses repeatedly that the information in the article couldn't be verified. But, in every aspect where verification was possible, the story was confirmed. Have you seen the video? It confirms the brutal nature of the attack, and jibe's perfectly with the account of the victim and the manager. You can view it on the Washington Post site -- see [2], below.

You guys are the experts, but it seems to me that for a news report to warrant your publising an article questioning its reliability, that there should be at least some evidence that there are factual inaccuracies. But there is none. Quite the contrary: everything we know, checks out perfectly. If the parts of the story that you are able to verify are confirmed, doesn't that shift the burden in favor of victim, the reporter, and the story? In other words, based on what we've learned, Christopher Marquez is credible. There's no evidence that he's fabricating his story. So, with regards to other information he provided, unless there's contradictory evidence, we should be inclined to believe him.

This is particularly problematic:
We asked whether multiple news reports citing the Black Lives Matter movement were supported by police records. The officer said there was no indication that any of the individuals were involved with (or even mentioned) Black Lives Matter." 
Here are the problems:
  1. The Daily Caller article never claimed that they were associated with the Black Lives Matter movement. They report what the victim said, that the youths asked him if he thought "black lives matter". Your characterization above is misleading.
  2. As mentioned above, the victim is credible, so what he said happened is certainly worth reporting, and
  3. The Daily Caller used the word "alleged" throughout their article. Their reporting was accurate and responsible. 
Your review article is being used by activists to discredit this story, shame the victim, and as evidence that these news outlets are not reliable. I won't attempt, in this letter, to argue that the Daily Caller is a reliable news outlet; but if they are judged to be unreliable, it should be on the basis of good information.

I have read Snopes for a long time, and often referred people to it, when they would post some ridiculous story or other. But this article really makes me worried about your own freedom from bias. These are very polarized times, and you provide an invaluable service, but that makes it all the more important that you diligently examine your own reporting for bias.

I hope you do the right thing. I think that you should retract it, and acknowledge the points I've made above, and apologize to the victim and the news outlets for leaving this deleterious article up on your site for so long.

[1] Daily Caller: Marine Allegedly Assaulted Mid-Burger At McDonald’s, As Gang Yelled ‘Do You Believe Black Lives Matter?

[2] Former Marine, AU student says he was beaten in racially motivated attack