Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Of course, you've heard about it by now.  17 students and staff dead at a high school in Parkland, Fl.  It's awful, of course.  But immediately afterward, of course, we hear all the braying for tighter firearm laws.  Never mind the fact that "gun control" has never worked (at least if you view the aim of it as reduction of crime, rather than reduction of firearm ownership, leading of course to a complete, virtual or for most of the population, a de facto firearms ban (One way of doing a de facto ban would be to make firearms, licensing or ammunition almost impossible to obtain either by excessive regulation or by driving costs through the roof.))

This effort to mount demonstrations both in Florida and nationwide is supposedly spontaneous.  Yet, it seems to me that this sprung up entirely too quickly and has been entirely too well-mobilized to be spontaneous.  There are materials to be paid for (Most of the protest signs I've seen are entirely too "made-for-TV" or "made-for-movies" for me.  And most of the rest of them looked professionally-produced.  This immediately sent red flags up sky-high for me.)  Transportation to the State Capitol?  Who paid for that?  There's a march being planned for Washington, D.C.  Who's paying for the transportation there and back?  Is public funding being used?  If so, certainly there is something illegal about that!

I don't mean to sound insensitive, but this does offer us opportunities to make some needed changes.  Then, these people and others will not have died entirely in vain.  The shooter, 19-year-old Nicholas Cruz, has been described as autistic, depressed and having had some other difficulties.  First of all, he didn't have a very good chance at life, with both his parents dying when he was very young.  He was taken in by foster parents.  His foster dad also died quite some time back.  This isn't exactly a normal childhood.  One thing I found strange was that one of his relatives (the report didn't identify whom) said that, "We've had this monster (italics mine) under our roof" a day or two after the shootings.  It seems to me that even if someone I loved had done something horrible such as this I would be much more hesitant to call him a "monster" at least so early in the process.  What amount of love was truly there?  Was the person saying this under duress?  Were the neighbors threatening this person and his or her family?  All this should be investigated and if appropriate, prosecuted.  We need an increased emphasis on the traditional family, including help through our governments to buttress the family.  Progressives have worked for a century or more to destroy the traditional American family.  This has to be reversed.

Those funny-looking jet contrails in our skies.  You know:  the ones that just stay, and stay, and stay.  We need to find out what's being sprayed in our skies and why!  And we need to do independent research on the subject, not just accept the answers of others.  Contrails didn't stick around like that when I was a kid and I doubt that they did when you were if you're over, say, 45.

We need to start having the Food and Drug Administration do honest research on what goes into our food.  This could at least in part explain the sudden increase in autism.  The fact that they use corporate-funded studies as evidence is absolutely mind-blowing!  It's the fox guarding the henhouse!  We also need to investigate why so many children are becoming depressed.  I'd say
fractured, dysfunctional families is a good place to start.

Let's not ignore one fact:  this mass shooting would never have happened if the FBI had done it's damn job!  This was a failure of the system which was entirely preventable without any change in gun laws!  One thing has to be said about their response to this, though.  At least they had the decency to admit it, and quickly, when they screwed up.

And one final point:  to claim that violence on television, in song lyrics and in video games somehow does not influence people's attitudes and behavior is positively stupid (And yes, it's time to call things which are obviously stupid stupid, regardless of who gets offended or how badly.).  If this was so, advertisers (who are some pretty smart folks) would not spend billions of dollars each year on advertising!  And to say that the awful things which are stated or implied by the lyrics of much rap music and a few genres of rock 'n' roll are merely free speech is positively ludicrous!  At the very least, we need a rating system which is realistic and enforced, with clerks going to jail for selling to underage people in much the same way as bartenders do.

So far, even the President seems to be going the easy, wrong direction when it comes to changes to deal with this phenomenon.  He has issued a memorandum banning bump-stocks and is talking about "an improved background check system".  Does that mean a more intrusive system?  Does it mean a system which makes it more onerous to buy a gun?  I am not in favor of these things.  However, I have a few suggestions.  They are:

1.  The latest brain research indicates that females are typically not adult until between 23 and 25 years of age and males not until between 25 and 27 years of age.  I would support an increase in the minimum age to buy a firearm to 23 for women and 25 for men.  I know I surely did some really strange and stupid things between 18 and 25!

2.  I do not support our medical records being even more public than they currently are.  In fact, I think that we should go back to it being more difficult for government and others to get access to our medical records.  Without extremely good reason, those records should be between you and your doctor!  However, if you have been adjudicated unable to take care of your own affairs, you should not be able to own or possess a firearm.  I would say that a felony record should preclude you owning or possessing a firearm, except that we have made so many things felonies that I think that's overarching.  How about this?  If you have been convicted (note I did not say, "under suspicion of", "arrested for", or "charged with".  I believe that an arrest or a charge does not make you guilty of anything and I am entirely uncomfortable with giving police that much power to affect someone's life who may be innocent.

In conclusion, I too weep for the parents of Parkland, Florida, but we need to be very careful where we proceed from here.  There are a number of steps which can be taken and have not been taken which could actually work to reduce the occurrence of these types of events without abrogating peoples firearm rights and the Second Amendment and therefore our Constitution.  And there is a very powerful, very well-funded and very well-organized movement that at the top (not toward the bottom necessarily, where there are I'm sure many well-meaning people who are simply responding to emotion and are being manipulated) is entirely devoted to making the United States of America a sheep-like, entirely-controlled and entirely defenseless society! 

Thursday, February 15, 2018

A Tragedy . . Some Context . . and Some Perspective

17 people killed at a high school in Florida.  A tragedy almost beyond words.  I've received no word yet on whether they were students or staff, or how many of each were killed.  I've also received no word on the number of injured.  It's every modern American parent's worst nightmare.

We hear the same mantra, the same calls, many from the same reliable sources, either directly or by inference calling for gun control, be it limits on accessories ("bump stocks" and large magazines), outright bans on certain types of firearms, bans on private firearm ownership (which would put the U.S. population at the mercy of its' government), bans on private sales of firearms, making private sellers go through the arduous process of forcing buyers through FBI background checks (never mind the fact that the FBI had the shooter in this case on its' watch list last year, yet did nothing to prevent the tragedy at
Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School (

Bennight, the reporter of the "professional school shooter" video, reported it to You Tube, which took out the "professional school shooter" language.  However, despite allegations of taking down numerous allegedly-right-wing news feeds, YouTube, rather than taking down the "school shooter" video immediately, left it up until the evening after the shootings.  So much for filtering systems.

I have a few ideas regarding how to prevent such situations from happening in the future without abrogating our Second Amendment rights.  They are:

1.  Every school district in the country should pay for professionally-done total security assessments of all of their schools.

2.  Every district should implement Israeli-style security at all of their schools.  That means there's one way in to each school.  All of the other easy access points (doors, windows large enough for a person to easily fit through without being noticed, etc.) should be exit only (this also satisfies fire codes).  That one way in involves a student or staff member (They can go nuts too!) going through a metal detector with armed ex-military or ex-police in attendance.  There should be no "Well, I know this guy (or gal).  He (or she) is okay."  There should be no "Hey, I can't go through this right now.  I'm late for class!"  Too bad!  Go through the metal detector!  And while we're at it, let's take a look inside that bag!  Yes, bags and large bulges, any large hats, anything that raises any suspicion, should be checked!  And no excuses, girls!  If a girl has a suspicious bulge, etc., if necessary, a woman should be called in to check the person (and yes, this includes staff)!

3.  I remember that when I was a youngster, I lived next to a family which had a significant amount of violence in their home.  They had, from time to time, several long guns which they kept in their utility room next to an outside door!  Yet, I never heard gunshots ring out.  I never heard anyone threaten to shoot anyone else.  I saw someone being carted out on a stretcher once but that was for a different reason.  My father and I have marveled (and thanked God for it) that we didn't see people carted out of that house more often, including possibly shot and/or dead.  I remember one time when I expressed interest in the guns.  I was told by one of the children in the family in no uncertain terms that we never touched those guns!  The reasons were simple:  not only might someone get hurt (that was unspoken) but the father in the family would kick our asses!  Yes, we had fathers in the home who we were thoroughly convinced (rightly or wrongly) would kick our butts if we merely stepped out of line, much less did something like that!  There has been research done that indicated that adolescent male African elephants will do a massive amount of destruction if brought up in a herd that has no adult males.  These adolescent male elephants hyper-masculinize.  Yet, if there are adult males, the adolescents toe the line, and quickly!  I wonder why!  

In closing, I have to note, as President Trump has, that mental illness may have played a role in this catastrophe.  Relatives have told others that the shooter was autistic and possibly on psychotropic medications to deal with emotional issues (

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Want Your Feedback

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Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Kushner Scandal May Be "Tempest In Teapot"

Another so-called Trump Administration "scandal" may not be as it appears.
So the story goes, Presidential advisor Jared Kushner talked with the Russian Ambassador to the United States about setting up a direct line of communication between the two of the world's three superpowers.  According to one source, however, the conversation was about a "simple one-off" communication with the Russians over Syria, and was not initially suggested by Kushner.  According to Fox News, this was suggested by Russian Ambassador to the U.S. Sergei Kislyak.  However, according to Fox, Kushner suggested that Russian equipment be used to thwart attempts to surveil the incoming administration.
So, let's get the facts straight:  the Russian ambassador suggested the conversation.  Kushner did not suggest it.  However, when spoken with about this, he suggested that the conversation take place over Russian-designed equipment so as to thwart any attempt by U.S. intelligence personnel to listen in on the call.  It concerns me that the Trump Administration would want to talk with the Russians without the intelligence community listening in.  However, such direct communication has been very important at times.  Consider the fact that during the Kennedy years there was the "red phone", which was a permanent link.  Consider also the fact that during the Cuban missile crisis that direct line probably prevented World War III.  However, considering the way intelligence officials and others seem to be interested in scuttling the Trump presidency, the suggestion that there be a private communication link does not surprise me.  In fact, it may be a very intelligent move.  So, the intelligence apparatus of this country may have made it easier for the Trump Administration to conduct back-room deals and still have the support of the public.  Confusing world, isn't it?  In effect, they may have discredited themselves.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Trump Has Right To Tell Comey To Back Off Flynn Investigation, Says Top Legal Expert

Famed attorney and Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz has confirmed what I suspected:  that President Trump has the Constitutional right to tell the FBI's Director to back off an investigation.  Here's more from CNN: