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Friday, July 3, 2015

"San Francisco pier shooting suspect has been deported 5 times"

An AP article which just came out stated that Francisco Sanchez "had seven felony convictions and had been deported five times, most recently in 2009."

My theory: Sanchez was just trying to resuscitate Donald Trump's Presidential campaign.

Sometimes succor can arrive in an unexpected form.

Paul Krugman's face

Commenter "Rifleman" said after the post about Jeb Bush:

Jeb has the condition known as "punchable face." It's a condition that is different from being merely ugly or weird looking or pathetic looking.

I thought that a perfect description.

Someone happened to mention economist Paul Krugman to me today, and it occurred to me he suffers from the same condition:

Krugman may even have a more serious case than Bush has. 

Will marriage continue to evolve?

An AP article yesterday described a possible new (old) twist in the evolution of marriage:

HELENA, Mont. – A Montana man said Wednesday that he was inspired by last week's U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing gay marriage to apply for a marriage license so that he can legally wed his second wife.

Nathan Collier and his wives Victoria and Christine applied at the Yellowstone County Courthouse in Billings on Tuesday in an attempt to legitimize their polygamous marriage. Montana, like all 50 states, outlaws bigamy — holding multiple marriage licenses — but Collier said he plans to sue if the application is denied.

"It's about marriage equality," Collier told The Associated Press Wednesday. "You can't have this without polygamy."

While the conservative news outlets that have carried this story have mostly refrained from editorial comment, it's hard not to sense an undertone of "See, we told you so!"

Collier cleverly framed his application as being "about marriage equality." He's using the language of the Left to try to achieve something most commonly associated with an extremely traditionalist group, the Mormons.

In fact, Collier is himself a former Mormon who was excommunicated for his (de facto) polygamy.

So far, liberals have not weighed in on Collier's application. After the celebrations of this past week, they don't want to sound as if they're saying, "Well, we're not for complete marriage equality, only for our form of it."

But, if you're going to expand the definition of marriage to accommodate different lifestyles, why not polygamy, as long as it's entered into by consenting adults?

It's pretty safe to assume that accommodating this particular lifestyle would not sit well with the feminist wing of the progressives. If there were such a thing as polyandry without polygamy, the feminists might support it. But allowing rich, piggish men the luxury of multiple wives? Nah.

What would happen in divorce? If there are three wives, each of them can't get a half. And making the Mormons feel justified has never been high on the liberal to-do list either.

On top of that, Collier doesn't exactly look like the kind of guy whom liberals like to support. He's a 40-ish heterosexual white guy, and neither the bolo tie in the top photo nor the camouflage shirt above quite say, "I voted for Barack."

So….the silence will probably continue.

Full disclosure: I've always supported gay marriage, having seen it as a matter of equal rights. (I know most readers of this blog disagree, but so be it.) And as a libertarian at heart, I'm inclined to let people do as they want in their personal lives.

That said, I'm not sure how I feel about polygamy. 

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Are we hard-wired for rape?

Has rape been an evolutionarily viable strategy for most of human history? It's not a question you hear asked, but it's worth thinking about. A clear-eyed view of evolution -- how we have been selected for traits which best help us spread our genes into the next generation -- is necessary for a full understanding of human nature.

Let me emphasize at the outset that this post is not in any way a justification of rape; it is merely raising the question of whether, in the past, rape has been an evolutionarily adaptive behavior.

Human evolution has been going on for roughly four million years, and for the vast majority of that time we were hunter gatherers, or, as the cartoons sometimes depict us, "cavemen." Agriculture only started around 12,000 years ago, and didn't become widespread for long thereafter. The industrial revolution really only started 300 years ago.

So what we think of as "civilization" has been around for only a very tiny fraction of our existence, and has had only a negligible effect on our evolution, and on our instincts.

What we have been conditioned to be for most of our four million years of evolution is cavemen. In fact, many of our instincts evolved even before we were human, back when we were still our common ancestor with chimpanzees. (We do share 99% of our genes with chimps.)

So we are essentially cavemen -- in a technological age.

Basic evolutionary strategies are fairly simple. For females, maximizing their reproductive output meant having a man who would stick around after mating with her and help provide resources (read: meat) and protection for her and her offspring. It also meant choosing a man who was most able -- and most likely -- to do those things.

For males, this meant spreading their seed as widely as possible, by mating with as many women as they could. Men could do this in two ways: by seducing women, whatever that entailed back in the caveman days, or by raping them.

The evolutionary upside of raping a woman was, obviously, more offspring. The downside was that you might be killed by vengeful fathers or brothers or mates. Or, by your victim, after you had dozed off. So, we would have been selected to rape only when there was little chance of being killed in revenge.

Thus, we were also selected to be discerning enough to know whether the risk of retaliation in any given situation was high or low.

Back in the caveman days, vengeful relatives, or other men who desired the same woman were basically the only risks you had to face if you were inclined to rape. There were no police forces, no court systems, no jail sentences, no DNA kits, and no feminists waving placards.

Of course, there were no such restraints on vengeful relatives or romantic rivals, either. It was simply….the jungle. And the "law of the jungle" prevailed.

So, was rape a viable evolutionary strategy? At times -- when the risk of revenge was low -- the answer has to be, yes. 

This is probably why the incidence of rape among conquering armies is so high. When your army has prevailed, the risk of retaliation by a member of the defeated enemy is low. Sacking, killing, and looting are usually followed by raping.

Rape is a low investment evolutionary strategy, meaning, you probably wouldn't stick around to help raise the offspring that resulted from such an act. But, you did get to possibly impregnate an otherwise unwilling female, who might manage to raise that offspring to maturity on her own. 

It's a pretty sure bet that a lot of your ancestors were products of rape, which means that a lot of your ancestors were rapists. Go back far enough and it's inevitable. Ergo, you are carrying the genes -- and instincts -- of a lot of rapists.

Rape is certainly a common enough fantasy among both men and women -- as Bernie Sanders once pointed out -- to think it's somehow wired into our brains.

Let me emphasize, once again, I'm not condoning rape. It is, unquestionably, morally repugnant.

But that is an entirely different matter from the question of whether evolutionary selection has favored rapists -- under the right circumstances.


The Greeks tried to play brinksmanship, and it looks as if that strategy may backfire.

Alexis Tsipras seems to see himself as wily Odysseus, tricking his enemies (i.e., people who have lent Greece money) by virtue of his superior intelligence.

In reality, he's just Bernie Madoff, selling worthless pieces of paper the Greeks have neither the ability nor inclination to make good on.

Over 50 percent of the doctors in Greece declare incomes of less than $14,000 a year. With tax avoidance so rampant (and doctors are just one, obvious example) it's not surprising that the government can't remain solvent.

I don't know what the solution is, but I certainly wouldn't be inclined to lend them any more money.

The problem is, if the European Union doesn't extend more credit, and boots them from the EU, the Russians will swoop in and lend them money. But Putin knows the Greeks are not money-good, and would only do this to get something in return: a place to put a naval base. That's a headache the Europeans don't want.

So, it's an impossible situation. All because the Greeks are irresponsible and don't pay their taxes.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Hollywood vs. Richard Matt, Part II

The NY Post ran a fairly lengthy article about the Dannemora prison escape today, with more colorful examples of Richard Matt's sociopathy. Some excerpts (with my comments in parentheses):

‘Ricky’ Matt

Even as a child, Richard Matt was menacing. “He would terrorize kids on the bus,” Randy Szukala, a former chief of police for North Tonawanda, told the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. “Friends of mine knew him. He would just terrorize people. Even in elementary, junior high, he had issues.”

(If you start terrorizing people in elementary school, your path in life is pretty well set early on. A lot of the psychology textbooks say you can't diagnose sociopathy before the age of 18; but character emerges pretty early on.)

Matt was arrested eight times, from 1985 to 1991, on everything from misdemeanor harassment to felony assault. “One time he beat up a girl pretty bad,” Tonawanda Police Capt. Frederic Foels told the paper….

(Hard to picture George Clooney beating the crap out of Jennifer Lopez in Out of Sight; or Tim Robbins having actually beaten up his wife before being falsely convicted of murder.)

In 1993, Matt was back in prison for attempted burglary. He did three years, but violated parole once out and wasn’t released again until 1997. That year, Matt was hired by William Rickerson, a Tonawanda man who had a small business re-selling nearly expired food. Matt lasted just a few months before getting fired, and so one snowy night that December, he and ­accomplice Lee Bates attempted to rob Rickerson, then 76.

They bound Rickerson with duct tape and beat him repeatedly, even though he insisted he had no money stashed. The two men ate pepperoni pizza, drank wine and then, as Bates would later testify, Matt dumped the rest of the wine over Rickerson, who was dressed only in pajamas. Then Matt tore off Rickerson’s toupee, shoved it in his pocket and put him in their trunk.

(Exhibiting a normal appetite during the commission of a violent crime is a distinctly sociopathic trait. Most people in such a situation would be far too upset to even think about eating, but if you're utterly remorseless, even committing murder simply don't affect you.)

They drove for nearly 30 hours, crossing state lines. At one point, Matt opened the trunk and bent Rickerson’s fingers back until they broke. Eventually, Matt killed Rickerson with his bare hands, breaking the man’s neck. Then he dismembered the body with a hacksaw and threw the remains in the Niagara River.

(Try to imagine just bending a 76-year-old's fingers back until they break. What kind of person would have the stomach for that?)

A few weeks later, Rickerson’s remains washed up, and Matt told his half-brother, Wayne Schimpf, that he was in trouble and needed to leave town. “I remember his words,” Schimpf later testified. “ ‘I can do another seven years, but I can’t do life.’”

Matt asked for Schimpf’s car. Schimpf refused and would testify that Matt said: “You’re my brother. You’re my blood. I love you, but I’ll kill you.”

(A sociopath's definition of "love" is a little different from most people's.)

Matt took the car and made his way to Mexico where, in 1998, he was imprisoned for stabbing an American engineer to death in a bar. He spent nine years in prison there before his unexpected extradition to the United States in 2007. Mexican authorities simply put Matt on a plane.

(Previous accounts had merely said that Matt had killed a man in a bar fight; the fact that he pulled a knife is illuminative.)

“The United States had a deal with the Mexican government to extradite a drug-cartel kingpin,” veteran court reporter Rick Pfeiffer told the Democrat and Chronicle. “He was being flown back to Texas and . . . this second guy gets off the plane. It took federal marshals almost a day to figure out who this guy was. There had been no discussion with the American government. He had just been such a difficult prisoner — if you can imagine a guy who seemed too difficult to stay in a Mexican prison.”

(Mexican prisons have a reputation for being some of the harshest around; that they would just disgorge an American prisoner because they couldn't handle him is almost hard to believe.)

Matt returned with metal front teeth and a bullet wound — sustained, he said, while attempting yet another escape.

(Metal front teeth in and of themselves are no indication of character, but in Matt's case they did seem to add to his fearsomeness.)

His trial lasted one month, and it took the jury only four hours to find him guilty. He was sentenced to 25 years to life, which he had been serving at Clinton. “Of all the cases I’ve tried,” said prosecutor Joseph Mordino, who had 250 homicides behind him, “this would top my list for the death penalty.”

(Mardino's statement speaks for itself.)

Friday, June 26, 2015

Hollywood vs. reality

As you've probably heard, Richard Matt, one of the two escaped killers from Dannemora Prison in upstate New York who have received so much publicity since, was shot and killed by police in the woods about 50 miles west of the prison.

Much of the initial coverage likened their escape to that of the Tim Robbins character in The Shawshank Redemption. Matt and David Sweat,  the other killer, had an accomplice on the inside. But even so, their escape took a lot of planning and ingenuity.

There's one crucial difference between the the movie and the recent escape though. In Shawshank, the mild-mannered character played by Tim Robbins is innocent of the murder of his wife, for which he was convicted. Richard Matt and David Sweat, were far from innocent. Sweat was convicted, along with two others, of the murder of a New York State Trooper, and was serving life without parole.

Of the two men, however, Matt was definitely the scarier one. A few excerpts from the NY Times article about him which came out a couple weeks ago, A Convicted Murderer's Escape Alarms Investigators From His Past:

It was 1997, and when investigators identified the remains as those of William L. Rickerson, they zeroed in on Richard W. Matt, a former convict who had been hired by Mr. Rickerson, and whose name was familiar to law enforcement officials in and around this town north of Buffalo.

Eventually convicted of killing his boss, Mr. Matt is now at the center of the biggest manhunt in the nation after and he and another inmate, David Sweat, escaped from a maximum-security prison in Dannemora, on the northeastern edge of the state. Mr. Matt was serving a sentence of 25 years to life with no chance of parole before 2032.

For the authorities who investigated the murder of Mr. Rickerson, who was beaten and dismembered, news of the escape was an alarming reminder of Mr. Matt and his brazen efforts to elude the police.

In 1986, he had escaped from a jail in Erie County. About a decade later, after Mr. Rickerson’s death, Mr. Matt fled to Mexico, where he killed an American man at a bar and served several years in prison before being brought back in 2007 to stand trial here in Niagara County.

“You can never have enough security with him,” said Gabriel DiBernardo, a retired captain with the North Tonawanda Police Department who was the chief of detectives leading the investigation into Mr. Rickerson’s death. “You can never trust him. You can never turn your back on him.”

Mr. DiBernardo, who retired in 1998, offered a sentiment echoed by others in law enforcement here: “He is the most vicious, evil person I’ve ever come across in 38 years as a police officer….”

Mr. Matt was someone to be regarded as “extremely dangerous,” said one retired law enforcement official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, not wishing to remind Mr. Matt of his name. “A lot of people get killed,” he said. “Not many killers take the time to dismember the body...”

When Mr. Matt returned to the United States to face trial in Mr. Rickerson’s death, officials took extraordinary security measures: A sniper watched over the outside of the courthouse. Double the usual number of deputies were posted inside the courtroom. The defendant was required to wear an electric stun belt.

And the glass that covered the wood counsel tables was removed, out of concern that Mr. Matt could break the glass and used the shards as weapons, according to the retired law enforcement official.

At the time, Mr. Matt’s lawyer argued that the security measures were excessive and would negatively influence the jury. But the precautions reflected just how wary he made the authorities. “It can never be overdone with Rick Matt,” Mr. DiBernardo, 78, said, pointing to Mr. Matt’s unusual physical and mental abilities. “He’s certainly not a dumb individual,” he said. “He’s a cunning individual, and a strong individual, physically strong. There’s no question he can handle himself.”

David Bentley, a retired detective who was with the City of Tonawanda Police Department for 29 years, said he had known Mr. Matt for nearly three decades. In the 1980s, he used him as a criminal informant, he said.

Mr. Matt had long been willing to flout the rules. Mr. Bentley recalled a story his informant had shared: When Mr. Matt was 14, he ran away from a youth home and stole a horse to make his escape. Over time, Mr. Bentley said he saw him spiral down, becoming more violent and unpredictable.

“I’m very concerned that people are going to get hurt the longer he’s out,” Mr. Bentley, 67, said. “I’ve seen him inflict wounds on himself, cut himself; break his collarbone and not seek any treatment. He’s just totally, totally fearless, and doesn’t respond to pain.”

Here is the picture the Times ran with the article: 

Here is his more recent, widely circulated mugshot: 

In both pictures he exudes a certain glowering malevolence. It goes without saying that Matt was a sociopath. There is much about him beyond the two murders that screamed sociopathy. For instance, that he didn't just kill Rickerson, but tortured him first

Matt he escaped from his "youth home" when he was 14 by stealing a horse. That sounds dramatic and daring -- like something out of a movie. And it shows the kind of resourcefulness and nerve that we lie our cinematic protagonists to have. But in real life, the people who show that kind of recklessness are far more likely to be sociopathic.

A "youth home" can refer to either a foster home or a facility for juvenile delinquents. If it was the former, it means his own background was dysfunctional; if the latter, that he exhibited his criminal tendencies from a young age. 

The best criminal informants are, of course, people who are absolutely without loyalty -- sociopaths.

Perhaps the scariest thing about Matt was how scared the law enforcement officers themselves seemed to be of him. Those extra security measures -- the snipers, that electronic stun belt, and the removal of glass from the tables -- were evocative of Hannibal Lecter. 

Matt was scary because he was, like Lecter, so capable. He was strong, crafty, and impervious to pain. A weak, dumb, fey little sociopath simply wouldn't inspire the same fear. 

According to a NY Post article about his accomplice:

Sources said the worker may have been wooed by one of the escaped cons, Richard Matt, 48, an infamous lady killer.

“He has a way with the ladies,” the source said.

Another source, retired Detective David Bentley, who helped put away Matt for the 1997 murder of a North Tonawanda businessman, added, “When [Matt’s] cleaned up, he’s very handsome and, in all frankness, very well endowed. He gets girlfriends any place he goes.”

Charm is, of course, another sociopathic trait. And it just makes Matt all the more scary. (A far as I know, penis size is independent of character.) 

But when he couldn't charm women, Matt was not averse to raping them, according to the Daily Mail, a crime for which he was also convicted.

He also attacked a nurse in 1991 with a knife.

Cool Hand Luke, played by Paul Newman, was a decorated Korean War vet who was arrested for cutting the heads off parking meters one drunken night. He never hurt anybody to get into jail, and once  there, he adhered to a strict code of honor.

Papillon (Steve McQueen) was framed for the murder of a pimp. 

When George Clooney escapes from the Glades prison in Out of Sight, he acts like a perfect gentleman to Jennifer Lopez even after semi-accidentally taking her hostage.

None of these movie characters is a truly bad guy, so we root for them to escape from their prisons, which are usually run by evil wardens. 

But that's Hollywood. Richard Matt was real life. Don't ever mistake the two.

Unless you're watching Silence of the Lambs.

All that said, I have to admit, I can't help but feel a certain admiration for Matt. He was strong, smart, charming, resourceful, and impervious to pain. The world is better off without him, but he was unquestionably a formidable guy. 

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Ben Affleck's moral vanity

It was announced today that PBS has suspended the Finding Your Roots series because of Ben Affleck's having put undue pressure on Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates Jr., the show's host, to delete a reference to his slave-owning ancestors.

When I first heard about this controversy a year ago, it struck me as silly. Does something that happened in your family several generations ago reflect on you? No one is held responsible for his parents' sins, let alone his great great great grandparents'. And even those distant ancestors were merely creatures of their time.

The fact is, we're all swayed by whatever's currently fashionable to think. The Puritans, for instance, didn't just happen to be a bunch of people who all happened, just coincidentally, at the same time to have similar values. They were simply molded by the culture they grew up in to think of certain things -- such as premarital sex -- as sinful. And other things -- such as killing Indians -- as not. Had any of us grown up in that era, we would likely have felt the same.

People who claim that they would have had their current values had they grown up in another era are simply self-deluding. In fact, they tend to be the very types so heavily influenced by fashionable thought that they would have almost undoubtedly would have shown equally mindless acceptance of the status quo 100, or 300, years ago.

So, while slaveowners were participating in a system that was inherently unfair, mostly, they were merely creatures of their time. Their individual characters were expressed by how they treated their slaves, not whether they were for or against slavery.

In any case, my first reaction to hearing about Affleck's request was that he was evidently unable to see this, and had an overdeveloped sense of guilt. Why should he feel responsible for something he had absolutely no control over?

But then it hit me that it was probably more a matter of vanity. Affleck didn't want his otherwise impeccably liberal credentials to be tarnished by any association -- however remote -- with the institution of slavery.

The ironic thing, of course, is that by making a stink about it, Affleck drew far more attention to his slave-owning ancestors than he would have gotten had he merely let the program air. (How many people actually watch Finding Your Roots?)

When Affleck made his demand, Professor Gates was too intimidated by this huge Hollywood star to stick to his principles and face him down. So, he asked his producers at PBS for guidance; in the end, they acquiesced and deleted the reference.

Gates had no such doubts about how to behave with the Cambridge cop who arrested him for disorderly conduct back in 2009: he screamed at him hysterically.

It would have been far more appropriate if Gates had shown a little more forbearance with that Cambridge cop, and screamed at Affleck instead.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

The black reaction to Charleston

While all the white liberals have been going ballistic bewailing -- or, depending on your viewpoint, crowing about --  Dylann Roof's rampage, the black reaction has been remarkably muted and gracious.

Some of the relatives of the victims at the Emanuel African Methodist Church actually forgave Roof. Or, at least, they pretended to -- which, for all practical purposes, is just as good. Either way, they certainly showed more equanimity than I would have in those circumstances.

And, it must be noted, there hasn't been any rioting since then either, just as there wasn't any rioting after the killing of Walter Scott by North Charleston police officer Michael Slager.

Even Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson have been mercifully absent.

It does seem that on those rare occasions when whites commit undeniably unjustified violence against blacks, and they are immediately arrested and condemned by other whites, there is rarely a black outcry.

It's when blacks think a white is getting away with murder that they riot. And even in those cases, it hasn't always been entirely their fault: the media would often draw a premature portrait of white guilt (as in the Michael Brown shooting) where there wasn't any. And Obama, Holder, Sharpton, and Jackson would subtly egg the mob on by invoking racism, police brutality, and so on -- while nominally calling for restraint.

Anyway, the black reaction to Roof has been admirable, and duly noted.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

"'Clinton Cash' author demolishes Hillary's self-defense"

A must-read from the NY Post.

It's amazing that more hasn't been made of Hillary having sold out 20% of the US's uranium production to Russia in return for some hefty contributions by various mining interests to the Clinton Foundation.

Mainstream media, where are you?

Oh, that's right, in the Dem's pocket, as usual.

If Hillary were a Republican, this would be a major scandal. And the word "treasonous" would have been invoked, many times.

Monday, June 22, 2015

NY Times coverage of the Charleston shooting

The Times has gone multi-orgasmic over the South Carolina shooting. But, you can't really blame them. In the recent past they've given extensive coverage to "crimes" committed by their preferred villains -- white males -- like the Duke lacrosses case, the University of Virginia rape case, and the Michael Brown shooting, most of which turned out to be not quite as advertised.

Now, they finally have a story which can't possibly backfire.

Dylann Roof is both white and male. He was motivated by racial animus, and even left a manifesto behind as proof. The victims were not only all black, they were mostly sweet old church ladies, along with a few male ministers. It was an incredibly ugly crime.

In fact, Roof not only gave the Times raw red meat to sink their teeth into, he even served them dessert in the form of his penchant for Confederate flags and his use of a handgun. He had everything they could have possibly asked for.

So, the New York Times has, predictably, gone to town.

The shooting occurred on Wednesday night. On both Friday's and Saturday's editions of the Times, there was no room above the fold on the front page for anything other than coverage of the Charleston killings. On Sunday, coverage still dominated. Today, four and a half days after the shootings, the story still merited four of the six columns above the fold.

Omar Thornton, a black employee at a warehouse in Hartford, CT, shot and killed eight white employees because of their perceived "racism" in August of 2010. (Their "racism" took the form of objecting when surveillance videos showed Thornton stealing beer from the warehouse.) The day after the killings the Times didn't even cover the story as a national news item, but only as a regional NY story. And their focus shifted almost immediately to the question of how much racism Thornton mighty have actually experienced.

The contrast in coverage is both stark and predictable.

But, you have to be happy for the Times. It's such a perfect "teachable moment" for them. Dreams really do come true.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Brave new world

Before Caitlyn and Rachel slip off the radar screen entirely, I'm thinking of taking advantage of the possibilities opened up by these courageous pioneers.

I plan to walk around on stilts and say I'm seven feet tall.

I'm going to wear a prosthetic and claim a ten inch penis.

I may start speaking in a British accent and say I'm an earl.

Or I may get some Ta moko tattoos, learn how to do a war dance, and claim to be a Maori.

What I want most, however, is to get a fake ID that says I'm only 25 years old. I'll be the pioneer there.

Actually, I'd be far from the first to lie about his age. But, I'll probably be the first to refer to himself as "trans-age."

The fact is, I just don't feel right in my (old) skin. This grouchy, querulous old 61-year-old just isn't me. Inside, I'm a lithe 25-year-old who wants to -- and can -- do a lot of women.

And the important thing is, I identify as 25-years-old.

Anyway, since I'll undoubtedly have the media on my side, don't you dare contradict me, or you'll be denounced as a reprobate.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Wimps with guns

One striking thing about many of these recent mass shooters is that they seem to be very wimpy physical specimens. The latest in what is unfortunately a long line, Dylann Roof, is no exception:

He looks both short and slight, and has a somewhat girlish face.

Here's James Holmes, the Aurora Colorado shoote from July of 2012:

Here is Elliot Rodger, the Santa Barbara shooter from May of 2014:

And here is Adam Lanza, of Newtown  CT fame:

What do they all have in common? They're small, even frail, and appear to have low testosterone levels. It's pretty obvious that before they took a bunch of lives, nobody took much notice of them except perhaps to note what losers they were. None were athletic, and most were probably virgins. They were all disappointments to their parents, and unpopular with their peers.

And, wimps that they were, they all needed guns as equalizers.

In a way it makes sense that these guys would turn out to be killers, because they had nothing to lose. And they were all resentful, so they wanted to take others with them. Roof's bitterness was focused on black people; but his basic psychology was undoubtedly the same.

I wrote a sample article once before, about Adam Lanza, as an example of what a responsible media would say about these guys: emphasize what dweebs and losers they are. If these potential killers knew beforehand that their actions would cause them to be held up to public ridicule, most would just take their own lives, and leave the rest of us alone.

The new $10 bill

News has just come out that Alexander Hamilton will be replaced as the figure on the $10 bill. The new bill will feature a woman. According to the NY Post:

Just which woman will wind up gracing the sawbuck will be decided later this year, after officials take input from citizens online and at local discussions.

Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew hailed the move.

“America’s currency is a way for our nation to make a statement about who we are and what we stand for,” he said.

Some might say that Lew has already accomplished that goal, merely by announcing that the next picture will be chosen on the basis of gender. But it will still be interesting to see who is eventually picked.

Harriet Tubman has been mentioned as a possibility. Susan B. Anthony may be another. Perhaps they'll consider Amelia Earhart, or Sally Ride.

My guess is they'll go with Tubman, since she's a twofer.

But since it hasn't been decided yet who the woman will be, I'd like to propose a few candidates, with an eye to Lew's statement about "who we are and what we stand for."

My first candidate is Kim Kardashian. Is there anybody who represents modern American culture better than her? She is rich, successful, and -- in some people's opinion -- beautiful. In fact, I suggest they use this image for the new bill:

My only hesitation in proposing Kardashian is that using her image on a mere ten dollar bill doesn't really do her justice, considering how she has been so successful at that uniquely American form of alchemy, transforming mere shamelessness into an empire worth millions.

My second candidate is Jackie Coakley, the woman behind the University of Virginia rape hoax. Is there a better example of political correctness run amok, the current atmosphere on campus, the power of the media, and crowd psychology? She, too, is a perfect symbol of who we have become and what we stand for.

My final -- and strongest -- candidate is a woman who started with none of the natural advantages that the other women did: Caitlyn Jenner. She is a groundbreaker in a way that none of the other women ever even dreamed of, having had to work for her femininity.

Think about her accomplishment this way: how many women do you know who could put a shot 15.35 meters, run 400 meters in 47.51 seconds, high jump 6' 8", pole vault 15' 8", throw a discus 169' 7" -- and then, 39 years later, look this glamorous?

What is it about Charleston, South Carolina?

2014 was the year that the police spent in the doghouse, what with the Michael Brown killing, the Eric Garner death, and a few other well publicized incidents. But the only police shooting which was obviously an actual murder was the killing of Walter Scott by North Charleston police officer Michael Slager.

Now, after a lot of of hate crimes which were not quite as advertised, or even hoaxes, we have an actual hate crime. Again, it took place in Charleston.

The odds of such happening in the same state are .02 x .02, or .004, meaning, four chances in a thousand. The odds of it happening in the same metropolitan area are even lower.

It's probably just coincidence. But it's quite a coincidence.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

A strange silence from the Left

While the forces of political correctness pressured us to kowtow to Jenner's new identity, they have been strangely quiet about Rachel Dolezal. It's hard not to conclude that Dolezal's scam has raised a number of questions that the Left doesn't want raised.

First, how did Dolezal benefit from being perceived as black? What exactly are the benefits that she wanted for herself? Did she enjoy her new "victim" status? Did it help her get ahead? How so? And how could that possibly occur in a world of white privilege?

Second, what does it say about the Left that so many who are drawn to its ideology -- or, at least, who exploit its ideology for personal gain -- are sociopaths like Dolezal?

Third, given that the "hate crimes" Dolezal claimed were committed against her now appear to be fictitious, and given that so many "hate crimes" the media has chosen to focus on turned out to be not as initially advertised, is this simply not one more piece of evidence that the hate crime industry is more often than not based on lies?

And fourth, isn't a fraudulent white-on-black "hate crime" in fact an actual hate crime against whites?

How does Jenner feel about Dolezal?

It's gotta sorta suck for Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner that right after his moment in the spotlight, right after the Left had worked so hard to celebrate his coming out, along comes Rachel Dolezal to not only steal his thunder, but to effectively make a mockery of his transformation.

A number of people have pointed out that if one person can be transsexual another ought to be allowed to be transracial. They have a point: if gender is a social construct, then so is race. (In fact, haven't some on the Left actually been saying all along that race is a social construct?)

And if people are using pictures of the early Dolezal to prove that she is in fact white, couldn't you do the same with pictures of the young Jenner to prove that he is in fact a man?

Given all of which, it's hard not to wonder what Bruce/Caitlyn's take on Rachel is. Does he see her as a fellow warrior in the trans movement? Or does he see her as an embarrassment who's opening the door for people to scoff at him as well?

Jenner recently said that he is a Republican. Is he discomfited at all by the fact that the people who enforced the celebration of his new identity were all liberals? Will this incline him to switch political allegiances here? One would think that a lifelong Republican would not switch parties this late in life.

Then again, one would also think a thrice-married father of six would not switch gender identities at his age either. Switching one's political affiliation actually seems the less drastic step.

Another question: why is there so little media attention on the fact that Bruce/Caitlyn still has male genitals? Until such time as he has them chopped off, he is still indisputably a he, however he feels inside.

(And if you insist on acquiescing to Jenner's wishes by referring to him by female pronouns, then you ought to extend the same courtesy to Dolezal and refer to her as black.)

But really, Jenner really ought not be referred to with female pronouns as long as he keeps his male genitals intact.

Up to you, Bruce. The ball's in your court.

Or rather, the balls are in your court.

Dolezal, Part III

It just keeps getting better.

Commenter Steven just pointed out that Rachel Dolezal had advocated a boycott of Exodus because it cast white actors as Africans.

Evidently she felt it was just not right for white people to pose as black.

Yesterday, Dolezal was interviewed by Matt Lauer about her long masquerade. What I took away from that was how Dolezal seemed to be completely without embarrassment or shame. Lauer asked her some fairly pointed questions, and she answered in a matter of fact tone, with a lot of obfuscatory language.

When asked if she were African-American, Dolezal replied, "I identify as black…..I did feel that at some point I would need to address the complexity of my identity….."

(Wrong: she is white, period.)

When asked about Albert Wilkerson, the black man Dolezal passed off as her father, she replied, "He actually approached me in north Idaho. And you know, where, we just connected on a very intimate level as family. Albert Wilkerson is my dad. Any man can be a father, not every man can be a dad.”

(Wrong: Wilkerson is not her biological father, nor did he raise her. He is not her father, period.)

When asked about the critics who said she was merely in blackface, Dolezal replied, “I have a huge issue with blackface. This is not some freak ‘Birth of a Nation’ mockery blackface. This is on a very real, connected level — how I’ve actually had to go there with the experience, not just a visible representation.”

Listen to that misleading language: she had to go there (i.e., become black). Evidently it was forced upon her, and she had no choice.

When Lauer showed Dolezal a picture of herself as a blonde, light-skinned young girl and asked if that was a Caucasian or African-American girl, she replied, "“I would say, visibly, she would be identified as white by people who see her.”

The correct answer, of course, would have been, "Caucasian." But Dolezal larded her answer with so many meaningless qualifiers that she made it sound as if there were extenuating circumstances involved. First, "I would say," as if this were only one person's opinion. Second, "visibly," as if Lauer might have been asking in any other sense. Third, "would be identified," to emphasize the theoretical nature of the discussion and to allow for another layer of possible mistakes, since, as we all know, misidentifications occur all the time. And fourth, "by people who see her," as if it's necessary to clarify that she is not referring to people who don't see her.

This is how sociopaths talk. Even when caught red-handed, they explain away their lies with more lies, and they couch their answers with a lot of flowery language that you have to wade through to get to their real meaning.

And, they never feel embarrassment or shame.

The whole thing was reminiscent of Lance Armstrong's interview with Oprah after he was found out; he, too, didn't betray even a glimmer of embarrassment or shame.

Nor surprising in either case: sociopaths are incapable of feeling either emotion.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Rachel Dolezal, Part II

More and more juicy stuff keeps coming out about Rachel Dolezal. Turns out that just like every other sociopath who's ever lived, she's been acting in character her entire life.

Today the NY Post reported:

The embattled NAACP leader accused of spending years pretending to be a black woman once sued Howard University — because she claimed the school discriminated against her for being white.

Rachel Dolezal -- who quite her post as president of the Spokane chapter of the NAACP Monday -- insisted that she lost out on teaching opportunities and scholarship money because of her white skin, according to court documents.

The Post article added that:

Meanwhile, Dolezal’s artwork is also sparking controversy, with accusations that at least one of her paintings bearing an uncanny resemblance to a famous landscape by the artist J.M.W. Turner.

“Rachel Dolezal plagiarized a painting that has its own damn wikipedia article,” one stunned Twitter user wrote.

Hypocrisy, plagiarism, and a nuisance lawsuit. All sociopathic signatures.

Quartermain pointed this article out earlier today:

The relevant excerpt:

The student said that the incident occurred within the first three weeks of an introductory course on race and culture. Dolezal introduced an activity she called “Fishbowl,” in which one student sat in front of the class as others were invited to ask them questions about their racial and cultural experiences.

In the first round of Fishbowl, the student said Dolezal sought out a volunteer of Hispanic background to be questioned.

The student, who told BuzzFeed News that she identifies as Hispanic, grew up in a Spanish-speaking country, speaks the language fluently, and, while she has light skin, believes she has a “pretty solid experience of what it’s like to be Spanish.” She raised her hand to participate.

“I think we should ask another student,” the student recalled Dolezal saying in class.

The student asked why she could not participate.

“Rachel said I didn’t look Hispanic,” she said, and that her instructor “doubted that I could share experiences of racial or ethnic discrimination because I didn’t have the appearance of looking Hispanic.”

Even more hypocrisy. 

In fact, it's a classic case of the pot calling the kettle white.