Tuesday, September 29, 2020

E-Book Resource: "The Snubby Revolver" by Ed Lovette

  So when I discussed some of the more general sources of info recently, I generally listed some major repositories with the warning that you would need to explore those repositories to find the books and information that might interest you. But I thought I would periodically post more specific links to a collection, library, or specific titles that would be of interest to the prepper/survivalist.

     Today's selection is Ed Lovette's book, The Snubby Revolver (177 pages), revised edition. This book is out of print, and looking at Amazon, I see pricing starting at $63 for a used copy, and $145 for a new copy. Lovette's background is in special forces and the CIA (as a paramilitary officer). Based on what he says in the book, I take it that he has trained CIA field officers as well as law enforcement as to weapons for extreme close quarters (ECQ) combat. He sees the snub-nosed revolver as the best handgun for an up-close gun fight. The book discusses his reasoning for selecting the revolver over a semi-auto, advice and recommendations as to loads, sights, grips, holsters, reloading the weapon, tactics, and more.

DisclaimerI'm not the author of any of the documents or things linked above and cannot vouch for their accuracy or completeness--use them at your own risk. I am not responsible for the posting or offering of any of the documents or things in the collections and/or libraries and have no control over whether they are posted or taken down.

Mayor Bill de Blasio Continues To Persecute Trump Supporters

The Daily Mail reports that New York City officials are threatening to impose severe restrictions on certain New York neighborhoods, including such measures as "shutting down all non-essential businesses in each of the areas again, banning gatherings of groups of more than 10, closing private schools and daycare centers in breach of certain safety requirements, and issuing harsh fines for those who refuse to wear masks." According to the article, many of the areas fingered for these restrictions are home to large Orthodox Jewish communities. A poll conducted in January of this year showed that 66% of Ultra-Orthodox Jews (haredi) voters supported Trump; and even among Modern Orthodox Jews, support for Trump was at 32%. And 80% of Ultra-Orthodox Jews voted for Trump in 2016.

Rules Are For The Little People--Feinstein and Facemasks

 The Daily Mail reports:

    Senator Dianne Feinstein has been branded a 'hypocrite' after being pictured walking inside a Washington DC airport terminal without a face covering on – just months after she called for a national mask mandate for all airlines and airports.

    The maskless California Democrat was caught on camera traversing her way through a private terminal at Dulles International Airport on Friday, with the images first aired by Fox News’ Tucker Carlson on Monday night. 

    Feinstein, 87, previously penned a letter to the Federal Aviation Administration and Federal Transit Administration on June 30 to institute mandatory mask mandates throughout airports, on airplanes, and on public transit across the country.

Sunday, September 27, 2020

A Quick Run Around the Web (9/27/2020)


VIDEO: "9mm or 45acp POP A TIRE???"--Who Tee Who (11 min.)
The short answer is "yes". The tires used in the video were for a Ford Ranger pickup and fairly new. Shots were through the tread, so the bullets had to penetrate the thicker rubber as well as the steel belting. The .45 ACP went through the tread, apparently ricocheted off the rim, and exited through another portion of the tire. Air loss was definite, but not super quick. The 9mm was shot from a 16-inch carbine, and so higher velocity than from a handgun. The bullet penetrated the tread of the tire and punched a hole in the rim--loss of air was very sudden. 

  • As always, be sure to check out the Weekend Knowledge Dump at Active Response Training. The topics of the compiled articles and videos include using improvised impact weapons, the goals and philosophies of the Antifa/BLM rioters as well as a warning not to underestimate them, hostage escape tools and techniques, recommendations on rotating your duty/carry ammo, defense against a carjacking, managing venomous snake bites, why you shouldn't keep a gun just sitting out on a nightstand, and more. 
  • "Building Pre-Traumatic Stress Resilience" (Part 1) (Part 2)--Building Shooters.
    Sure, it’s important to get intimately familiar with your rifle, scope, and other gear. You need to do that. But you have to look beyond the gear, to your mind. Once you break through and beyond the physical, you will reach new mental heights and that will translate into confidence, which is vital. You will carry yourself differently once you realize that you can break what you once imagined were limits. This doesn’t only apply to shooting — it carries over to so many other aspects of our lives. The purpose of this entire article is to get you to shift your perception, which opens up new possibilities and horizons.

    After that run, the crosshairs would actually jump around on the target with each beat of our heart. I personally would force myself to breathe very deeply for about 15 seconds or so to get my heart rate down to a manageable level. As I did so, I got into what the Gunny referred to as “The Bubble”, where nothing else in the world existed aside from that target that I was about to successfully engage. Nothing was going to stop me, not the wind, not my pounding heart or heaving lungs. I was going to kill that target, and there was just no way around it.
  • "The Secret to Becoming a Great Handgun Shooter" by Richard Mann at Shooting Illustrated. "Next to firearm safety, the single most important skill you must master with a handgun is the ability to operate the trigger—make the handgun fire—without disturbing the sight picture. That's it. The secret is out."
  • "The Shoot Down Drill: A Fairy Tale" by John Connor, American Handgunner. A look at shooting tactics developed to combat suicide bombers. 
    Even if a Pong [suicide bomber] — especially a “medicated” one — took a solid hit, after a few seconds, he could frequently recover enough control and dexterity to “punch his button.” Two Yanx and some TufNutz [Israelis] had even seen guys take wounds that good sense and medical experts would term fatal, but they remained briefly functional, as though “science says he’s dead, but he didn’t get the message.”

    One of the Yanx observed that the TufNutz were shooting tightly controlled single shots and some doubletaps. He had been taught to “shoot ’em where they’re biggest, and do it more than once,” and his own “evolved practice” had become “shoot ’em where they’re biggest lots and lotsa times, until there ain’t no threat anymore.”

    Several who had observed this phenomenon agreed a man who is receiving a steady, unrelenting series of impacts, spaced, let’s say, a tad less than a second apart, will be virtually unable to do anything but involuntarily react to those continuing impacts. Man being essentially a big wet sack of electrical connections, the response is like timed low voltage shocks, or mechanically, like a boxer taking a rapid volley of punches: The first couple of blows may only stun and shock him, but he is prevented from coordinated reaction, and the disabling effect only increases and deepens as he is hammered all the way to the canvas and into oblivion.

    The TufNutz technique changed: No more single shots; no more double-taps — just absolute focus on timed, continuous, accurate fire; and it wasn’t at all about “shooting to kill,” but about “shooting to zero-threat.” It worked.
... Experienced forensic pathologists, not uncommonly, encounter cases in which an individual, after incurring a fatal gunshot wound of the heart, is able to walk or run hundreds of yards and engage in strenuous physical activity prior to collapse and death. In one case seen by the author, a young man was shot in the left chest at a range of 3 to 4 ft with a 12-gauge shotgun firing #7 1/2 shot. The pellets literally shredded the heart, yet, this individual was able to run 65 feet prior to collapsing. Such activity is not surprising if one realizes that an individual can function without a heart for a short time. The limiting factor for consciousness is the oxygen supply to the brain. When the oxygen in the brain is consumed, unconsciousness occurs. Experiments have shown that an individual can remain conscious for at least 10 to 15 sec. after complete occlusion of the carotid arteries. Thus, if no blood is pumped to the brain because of a massive gunshot wound of the heart, an individual can remain conscious and function, e.g., run, for at least 10 sec before collapsing.
  • Ignorance is strength: "Piece Now, Peace Later" (PDF). This is a booklet intended for Antifa, BLM, and other types of marxist-anarchists, and explains the basics of owning and using a firearm. Written by someone that obviously doesn't know much about firearms, it nevertheless gives you some insights into the minds of the modern American brown-shirts.
  • "Self-defense in a surveillance society" by Peter Grant. The combination of pervasive surveillance cameras and leftist prosecutors has given rise to a double standard when it comes to self-defense. From the article:
    In an area where the law enforcement and/or prosecution authorities are subject to and/or promoting an extremist agenda, such photographic and video evidence can be turned against you.  The raw images alone are not sufficient to clear your name, because a competent prosecutor can describe them in very different ways to yourself, and twist their interpretation to support otherwise baseless charges against you.

    For a recent example, look at the video evidence in the Kyle Rittenhouse case, and how prosecutors used it to bring murder charges against him while his defense attorneys are claiming it shows him acting in legal, legitimate self-defense.  Same video, very different interpretations.  Which one will the jury believe?  Your guess is as good as mine - particularly because the prosecution has a major say in selecting the candidates for the jury pool.
  • "Keeping Up With Cartridges" by Wayne Van Zwoll, Guns Magazine. By his count, "[d]uring the entire 20th century, from the debut of the Mannlicher-Schoenauer rifle to the Remington 700 in .300 Ultra Mag, there were 80 new cartridges," but in just the past 18 years we've seen 50 new centerfire rifle cartridges.
  • "Ammunition Smuggling to Mexico, 13 Thousand Rounds Caught at Border"--Ammo Land. This is small time stuff compared to what the cartels get from domestic (Mexico) and foreign sources.
  • "The Best SHTF Gun Debate Is…No Debate At All" by Cory Wayne, USA Carry. The author outlines why he thinks the AR-15 is the best SHTF weapon.
  • "IWI Tavor TS12 Shotgun"--Guns America. Might want to stick with your tried and true Remington or Mossberg. 
  • "Swords for SHTF? A Skeptical Perspective from a Sword Arts Practitioner"--All Outdoor. The author, who has experience wielding the katana (probably the most overrated weapon in existence, IMHO), recommends a boar spear over a katana because of its superior reach and ability to pierce through armor (or thick clothes) that your opponent might be wearing. If you decide to go the route of getting a sword (or something similar), here are a few tips: First of all, get a blade that is pre-sharpened (generally such swords will be advertised as "battle-ready")--while it is easy to maintain a sharp blade, trying to put an edge on an unsharpened sword is probably beyond your skill and the tools you might have (and don't think your local knife sharpener will be able to put an edge on it either). Second, avoid cheap "wall-hanger" reproductions. One of the easy ways to tell a wall-hanger from a real sword is that most wall-hangers are made of stainless steel, while a real sword will be made from high-carbon, spring tempered steel. Third, get some training such as taking a fencing class (or joining a fencing club), a Historical European Martial Arts (HEMA) class, or kendo. The HEMA class will offer you the best bet for teaching actual fighting skills, as fencing and kendo are purely sport. Also realize that your training will be around particular weapons: a kendo class won't teach you how to use a Model 1913 “Patton” saber or the Pattern 1908 cavalry sword; a fencing class won't teach you how to use a katana. 
  • "10 Best Ways to Defend Yourself Against Civil Unrest" by Steve Tarani, Shooting Illustrated.  A collection of tips, including things like maintain situational awareness, watch your local news so you know where protests are happening or planned so you can avoid those locations, avoiding the attention of the mob, and more. I found the article to be unsatisfying because, while the tips were sound, it seemed a little shallow. I would recommend that you take a look at Greg Ellifritz's articles on surviving a mob or riot. on which he has written extensively. For instance, his article "Surviving the Mob" has detailed recommendations, tips and a few techniques if you find yourself caught up in a mob or protesters. His "Riot Survival Compendium" has links to other articles he has written about surviving a mob, riot, etc.
  • "Why Triggers Have Different Sizes & Shapes" by Tamara Keel, Shooting Illustrated. From the article: "Long a popular alternative in the 1911 world, flat triggers are less sensitive to where the shooter’s finger lands when accessing the trigger in a hurry. On a pivoting trigger, like those in SIGs and HKs, a further benefit is that the trigger shoe can be engineered so that the sear breaks when the trigger is vertical, 90 degrees to the bore axis. This is theoretically less likely to disturb the sight picture."
  • "The Walther PPK, the classic spy gun that changed the game" by  David Szondy, New Atlas. While we now associate the PPK's popularity with the James Bond character, the reality is that Ian Fleming was persuaded to have his character switch to the PPK because of its real world popularity with security and intelligence agencies. 
  • "A New York Hospital System is Building a Gun Owner Registry One Patient At a Time"--The Truth About Guns. "Care providers have been using Medicare/Medicaid CMS-approved patient intake forms with firearms questions for years. Complain to CMS about the boundary violation and they’ll deny responsibility, explaining that a private company created the forms and added the questions on their own. But if you lie about your guns, CMS won’t pay your claim."
  • "PG&E prepares to cut power to nearly 100,000 homes in Northern California amid risk of more wildfires - just TWO WEEKS after they left thousands of residents in the dark during targeted outages"--Daily Mail.

VIDEO: "The Future is Black (and Female)"--Black Pilled (20 min.)
An analysis of another piece of Hollywood propaganda. 

The Current Unrest:
  • "Revolution 2020" by Angelo Codevilla, The American Mind. You might want to print or save this article. Codevilla begins by observing that "Our revolution is by the ruling class—a revolution from above. Crushing obstacles to its growing oligarchic rule is the proximate purpose." The remainder of the article looks at how we got to our present position of what appears to be the edge of another civil war, as well as possible outcomes depending on who wins this presidential election. As you can guess, things will only get worse if Biden wins:
    Victory for the Democratic Party is a recipe for violent strife. 

    The lack of moral-political authority at the head of the ruling class has been arguably the most important and least remarked fact of public life in 21st-century America. Most visibly since 2008, its leaders have led primarily by pulling rank—denigrating ordinary Americans and calling attention to their own elevated stations in government and society—and by courting the coalition of groups driven by intersectional hate. 

    After an electoral victory, these leaders—the elected officials, the deep state bureaucrats, the corporate and finance chiefs, the educrats, etc.—will be able to wield power to the extent of the losers’ complaisance and their ability to satisfy the intersectionals’ ambitions and hates. Moderating and meshing these contrasting requirements would be hard even for exceptionally astute and potent persons. But neither Joe Biden nor Kamala Harris has talent, personal following, or moral authority. Hence, the winners would be hostages to the war that their own activists would wage against the rest of America, and to the deplorables’ resistance. 

    For most ruling class notables, enjoying and parceling out victory’s prerogatives is the revolution’s point. They would prefer to suppress the deplorables while minimizing disruption of the economy and avoiding violence. For these chiefs, rubbing the deplorables’ faces in excrement is mostly an instrument of conflict. But for the intersectionals, it is the revolution’s very objective, its driving logic. For them, vengeance is electoral victory’s foremost prerogative. ...

* * *
    Intersectional groups exist regarding each and every facet of life to make as much trouble as they can for whoever differs from them. Following the Left’s victory in 2020, attorneys general, agency potentates, mayors, and corporate officials who are part of or partial to these groups would see it as more to their advantage than ever to act against deplorables: investigations to harass, lawsuits to bankrupt, arrests to defame, seizures of property, firings, cancelings, restraining orders, custody of children…there is no limit to how people can be hurt by willful uses of power.

    It is also the end of the Republican party as we know it. Codevilla believes that those on the political Right "will be looking for leaders eager to do unto the Left what the Left has been doing to them, for leaders who organize effective resistance, and who offer a prospect for saving their constituents’ way of life." The milquetoast RHINOs of yore will have to evolve or leave. In fact, we have already begun to see their exodus over the last few years (looking at Jeff Flake as an example). And, he adds, while "[a]fter 2016 the Left had pretended to be frightened of populism[,] [i]t would be incumbent on whoever would lead the Right side of American life after 2020 to give them real reasons to fear it."

    And should the Democrats lose?

    Donald Trump’s reelection would reduce the intersectionals’ confidence a bit and give the Right side of American life a bit more leeway as it chooses new leadership. In this slightly calmer atmosphere, the beginning of the 2024 election cycle would open a host of possibilities. 

    But it would not end our revolution any more than the ruling class’s victory would. The revolution’s essentials would remain and its logic would continue to unfold. The ruling class, having failed peaceably and hence firmly to establish oligarchy, remains pressed by the deplorables on one side and its chosen intersectional instruments on the other. It dares not try dismounting the tiger it rides. 

    The deplorables tried in 2016 to call into being a Party to relieve the ruling class’s oppression and, Trump notwithstanding, ended up oppressed by the intersectionals more than they ever imagined. In 2020, despite Trump, only these are stronger than four years earlier. But the intersectionals’ power is an expression of the ruling class—and in 2020 the ruling class, its enormous power over money and institutions notwithstanding, lacks energy and legitimacy of its own and must borrow them from the intersectionals. Trump’s reelection raises no obstacles to their aggrandizement that did not exist the previous day. Virtually without obstacles under Trump I, that aggrandizement would continue under Trump II. 

    After election day 2020 Trump, even victorious, is a spent force. From the day he declared his candidacy until some time in 2018 he embodied the Deplorables’ hopes for salvation. Thereafter until the 2020 election, he embodied the certainty that his defeat would mean the choice between subjection and war. 

    Few if any of his voters deluded themselves that his second term would be better than his first, during which they had lost more of their country than in the previous half century. But the deplorables’ fate is tied to Donald Trump—until election day 2020. The morning after the 2020 election, the deplorables’ agenda resets to 2016, with the vital difference of urgency. Yes, the deplorables need a political vehicle of their own for the future. But, most urgently, they need national focus and organization to guard their freedoms today. That means instantly searching for new leadership, and urgently getting behind it.

    Donald Trump having vaccinated the deplorables against what Theodore Roosevelt used to call “the unbridled tongue and the unready hand,” candidates for leadership of the Right side of American life will have to present themselves by actually leading their fellow Deplorables effectively to resist and reverse what officious and official policy by potentates high and low are doing, and have done, to foul so much of American life.

The worst case, however, is not that Trump rejects the election outcome. The worst case is that he uses his power to prevent a decisive outcome against him. If Trump sheds all restraint, and if his Republican allies play the parts he assigns them, he could obstruct the emergence of a legally unambiguous victory for Biden in the Electoral College and then in Congress. He could prevent the formation of consensus about whether there is any outcome at all. He could seize on that un­certainty to hold on to power.

Basically, the author assumes that Trump will have a narrow lead on election night, but that lead will decline as mail-in ballots are counted; and that Trump, rather than concede, will take the fight over ballets to the courts, resulting in two or possibly three people claiming to be president on Inauguration Day.
    Our model is based on the fact that across history, what creates the risk of political instability is the behavior of elites, who all too often react to long-term increases in population by committing three cardinal sins. First, faced with a surge of labor that dampens growth in wages and productivity, elites seek to take a larger portion of economic gains for themselves, driving up inequality. Second, facing greater competition for elite wealth and status, they tighten up the path to mobility to favor themselves and their progeny. For example, in an increasingly meritocratic society, elites could keep places at top universities limited and raise the entry requirements and costs in ways that favor the children of those who had already succeeded.

    Third, anxious to hold on to their rising fortunes, they do all they can to resist taxation of their wealth and profits, even if that means starving the government of needed revenues, leading to decaying infrastructure, declining public services and fast-rising government debts.

    Such selfish elites lead the way to revolutions. They create simmering conditions of greater inequality and declining effectiveness of, and respect for, government. But their actions alone are not sufficient. Urbanization and greater education are needed to create concentrations of aware and organized groups in the populace who can mobilize and act for change.


Is the U.S. likely headed for still greater protests and violence? In a word, yes. Inequality and polarization have not been this high since the nineteenth century. Democrats are certain that if Donald Trump is re-elected, American democracy will not survive. Republicans are equally certain that if Trump loses, radical socialists will seize the wealth of elites and distribute it to underserving poor and minorities, forever destroying the economy of the United States. Both sides are also convinced that the other side intends to change the democratic “rules of the game” in ways that will make it impossible for them to compete effectively in future elections. In such conditions, elections are not merely contests over policy preferences; they become existential battles for the future of the nation. Whichever party loses is likely to view the results as rigged and the outcome as intolerable. 

Although the authors are beset by a liberal bias, it is worth reading the whole article. Where the authors are particularly blind is their insistence that immigration is a bogey man, even though one of them (Turchin) had written elsewhere that immigration has historically been used to depress wages. Of course, the issue is how to avoid discord. The two offer the following:

How can Americans end our current Age of Discord? What we need is a new social contract that will enable us to get past extreme polarization to find consensus, tip the shares of economic growth back toward workers and improve government funding for public health, education and infrastructure.

The authors seem to focus solely on a better sharing of political power and wealth via action at the federal level, without considering that the extraordinary concentration of power in the federal government has been a key factor in allowing the elites to accumulate power and wealth. Also, their historical examples dealt with nations that largely had common mores and purpose. The United States is increasingly becoming a country where sharing power is impossible because there is no commonality and consensus among the population (we ceased to be a nation long ago) as to morality or proper roles in society, let alone between the elites and the common person. 
The United States is witnessing the highest levels and centers of cultural influence of the American Catholic Church shamelessly siding in favor of the Democratic candidate and more generally in favor of the entire apparatus that has been consolidating in recent decades within the public administration. The Deep State, Trump’s sworn enemy, is joined by a Deep Church that spares no criticisms and accusations against the incumbent President while winking indecorously with Biden and BLM, slavishly following the narration imposed by the mainstream. It matters little that Trump is openly pro-life and defends the non-negotiable principles that the Democrats have renounced – the important thing is to transform the Catholic Church into the spiritual arm of the New World Order, so as to have an imprimatur from the highest moral authority in the world, something that was impossible with Benedict XVI.
    Experts both inside and outside the beleaguered agency raised serious concerns about the once-in-a-decade count, which was thrown into disarray by the spread of Covid-19. As early as mid-April, just weeks into the country shuttering during the pandemic, the Census Bureau pleaded with Congress to extend deadlines for the count for 120 days.

    The proposed deadlines would have pushed field collection until the end of October, with apportionment data — the population count used for determining the number and population of each state's congressional districts — being submitted to the president by April 30, 2021 instead of by years’ end. But Congress never officially granted the statutory extensions, and in late July, Census Bureau Director Steven Dillingham, an appointee of President Donald Trump, began to back away from the bureau’s requested extension. In early August, the bureau officially announced it was reversing its request for an extension and would deliver apportionment data to Trump by the end of the year.

Yet the judge ordered the extension contrary to the wishes of Congress and the law.
    Fox’s Sean Hannity—Lord love him—has long been in the forefront of the fight to expose the Trump-Russia probe which, we learn increasingly virtually every day, was even more immoral, seditious, and anti-American than we had imagined.

    Most recently, it has been revealed the sub-source for the Steele Dossier—the guy Christopher Steele relied upon for his vile lies—had already been investigated by the FBI as, of all things, a Russian agent, making the Dossier itself likely deliberate Russian disinformation that was accepted by the FBI anyway because… well… by any means necessary. (The shameless liars at Mueller’s operation claimed the Russians favored Trump, which is ludicrous given this revelation plus the content of the Dossier.)

    It’s amazing it took three years for us to learn this.

    But Sean H. evidently made one, I regret to say serious, mistake, probably because he’s basically a nice guy from a law enforcement family. He insisted all along that the problems in the FBI were only at the top, the so-called “Seventh Floor,” the domain of Comey, Strzok, McCabe, and the others.

    Unfortunately, no. Also just revealed after three years are 302s (near-contemporaneous notes made after an interview) and texts that show lower-ranking FBI agents too were aware of the malfeasances that were occurring in the early stages of the Michael Flynn case.

    In fact these agents were so alarmed they were considering professional liability insurance lest they be sued for the dishonest—one could even say treasonous— activities in which they were being forced to participate.

    Frankly, I never imagined a FBI agent could even buy such insurance. The implications are unpatriotic on their face. But live and learn.

    It’s interesting too, given the nervous chatter among themselves, not one of these agents became a whistleblower. I guess you have to be a friend of Adam Schiff for that. Or prodded by him.

    What this adds up to, of course, is that although the direction of Obamagate or Spygate (call it what you will) came from the top—the “Seventh Floor” and above—others down the food chain knew about it. They too were guilty, although less than their superiors. They were the cowardly soldiers who went along.

    How many such people there were we don’t know and, needless to say, there still are plenty of good men and women in the FBI, but it’s clear the organization has been so corrupted it needs to be dismantled—or reformed so entirely it might as well be dismantled.

    Christopher Wray, the current director of the FBI, is about as far from the man to accomplish this as you could conjure. A Deep State apparatchik par excellence he has had difficulty going so far as to acknowledge the existence of Antifa. (He finally did). He preferred the canard of saying the real danger was white supremacists. Apparently, he doesn’t get out much. Most likely he will be gone very shortly if Trump is reelected.

    A new national law enforcement agency should be built from the ground up with its headquarters far from Washington. I would like to think some version of this is on the agenda for Trump II.
On Thursday, in his continued effort to get his case dismissed, Michael Flynn filed a third brief supporting the original dismissal claim.  This made waves because it included texts among FBI analysts in which they admitted that they knew the investigation against Michael Flynn was unfounded and driven by partisan animus.  The text messages might have revealed more than that: one texter confessed that those involved bought professional liability insurance after becoming afraid that news might leak about their conduct.  They might have committed insurance fraud if they didn't let the insurance companies know they had already committed wrongful acts.
  • "The Prelude to World War II: The Spanish Civil War and Today's America"--Ammo.com. We are seeing a lot of articles attempting to draw analogies between history and events playing out today in America. Many of the analogies I've seen compare this time to the conflicts that already had begun prior to the advent of the U.S. Civil War, known as "Bleeding Kansas." The author of this piece looks, instead, to the lead up to the Spanish Civil War in the 1930's, often considered to be a prelude to World War II. From the article:
    The igniting event was the election of 1936. This saw a very, very slim (less than 1 percent of the vote) victory of the Spanish left (socialists, Communists and anarchists) over the Spanish right. The right wing in Spain stopped planning to take over the Spanish Republic and instead decided that they were going to overthrow it.

    The central republican government of Spain was very weak and had been making attempts to purge suspect right-wing generals from its ranks. To that end, General Francisco Franco, who ended up becoming dictator of Spain until 1976, was removed from his office as chief of staff and put out to pasture in the Canary Islands. When the uprising began, the nationalist rebels had the unanimous support of the Army of Africa, a 30,000-strong force that boasted some of the hardest core soldiers Spain had to offer. Many of these troops were Muslims from Morocco, who had been told that the republic planned to outlaw worship of Allah.

    Indeed, Spanish Morocco was the base of operations for the rebels, with Generals Franco and Goded taking control of the Canary and the Balearic Islands, respectively. Any opposition in the Spanish colonial empire was quickly crushed with leading trade unionists and leftists simply executed by the rebel forces. The two trade union federations in Spain offered to help crush the uprising, but were told that there was nothing to worry about as the uprising was confined to Morocco and other overseas possessions.

    The coup was less than a rousing success for the nationalist rebels, who invaded from their overseas bases. They failed to capture any major cities, which remained significant bases of support for the republican government. The republican government remained in possession of the lion’s share of Spanish territory. However, the republican government was at a disadvantage for two reasons: First, the nationalists had split the territory of peninsular Spain in half, dividing the country between republicans in the north and south while they controlled the middle.

    Second, the republican government responded to the crisis by effectively mobilizing the far left in Spain as shock troops to terrorize the population into submission. Communists in particular were unleashed to execute and torture anyone even suspected of being a nationalist sympathizer. It didn’t help that the clergy bore the brunt of this, with nuns gang raped before being summarily executed. The republicans went so far as to exhume the bodies of dead religious figures and desecrate their corpses.

Read the whole thing.


VIDEO: "Climate Science Collapses | Top Journal Ices the Cake"--Suspicious Observers (4 min.)
The shutdowns due to COVID-19 actually caused the planet to heat up. 

    Police in Sweden say they're struggling to control criminal "clans" exercising their own form of justice, amid an escalation of violent crime in what has long been a tranquil and safe country.

    With close family loyalties and little regard for the authorities, a few dozen criminal gangs now wield considerable influence over some of Sweden's disadvantaged neighbourhoods, say experts.

    Shootings, bombings and grenade attacks have become regular events in cities and towns across the country. Media outlets report on drug wars, blackmail, and witnesses too fearful of repercussions to testify.

Christianity teaches that marriage is what makes sex moral (marriage is sanctifying), and that marriage is the moral place for sex and romantic love. Courtly love twisted this and taught that romantic love is what sanctifies sex, and that adultery is the only right place for romantic love. Christianity teaches that a wife should submit to her husband with fear and reverence. Courtly love taught that a man should submit to another man’s wife with fear and reverence. This is, in a word, evil, and the wreckage of this evil thinking is all around us.

  • A look back at how we lost the culture wars and what needs to be retaken: "The Deconstruction of Marriage" by Daniel Greenfield (March 27, 2013). This is Greenfield's explanation of how "gay marriage" was yet another step in rendering marriage meaningless and destroying the family. An excerpt:
    Gay marriage is not about men marrying men or women marrying women, it is about the deconstruction of marriage between men and women. That is a thing that many men and women of one generation understand but have trouble conveying to another generation for whom marriage has already largely been deconstructed.

    The statistics about the falling marriage rate tell the tale well enough. Marriage is a fading institution. Family is a flickering light in the evening of the West.

    The deconstruction is destruction. Entire countries are fading away, their populations being replaced by emigrants from more traditional lands whose understanding of the male-female relationship is positively reactionary. These emigrants may lack technology or the virtues of civilization, and their idea of marriage resembles slavery more than any modern ideal, but it fulfills the minimum purpose of any group, tribe or country-- it produces its next generation.

    The deconstruction of marriage is not a mere matter of front page photos of men kissing. It began with the deconstruction of the family. Gay marriage is only one small stop on a tour that includes rising divorce rates, falling childbirth rates and the abandonment of responsibility by twenty and even thirty-somethings.

    Each step on the tour takes apart the definition and structure of marriage until there is nothing left. Gay marriage is not inclusive, it is yet another attempt at eliminating marriage as a social institution by deconstructing it until it no longer exists.

    There are two ways to destroy a thing. You can either run it at while swinging a hammer with both hands or you can attack its structure until it no longer means anything.

    The left hasn't gone all out by outlawing marriage, instead it has deconstructed it, taking apart each of its assumptions, from the economic to the cooperative to the emotional to the social, until it no longer means anything at all. Until there is no way to distinguish marriage from a temporary liaison between members of uncertain sexes for reasons that due to their vagueness cannot be held to have any solemn and meaningful purpose.
    • Related: "What Comes Next?" by Larry Kummer. What comes next in a post-marriage world? The world will continue to become one increasingly designed to benefit women. And, according to Kummer, the men will drop out of the rat race. "Patriarchy was the reward to men for running the rat race," says Kummer. Without that reward, he sees a world where the up and coming generation of men will abandon the rat race and largely withdraw from a hostile world:
A man with few aspirations can live just fine outside the rat race. No great career, but steady work. No long-term relationships with women, just casual sex (much, little, or none depending on one’s taste). Lots of booze, drugs, sports, and games. No ties to the community, nation, or religion – none of whom have done much for them.
    Ruth Bader Ginsburg did a great many interesting and impressive things in her life, but she never did the one thing she probably really should have done: run for office. Ruth Bader Ginsburg wasn’t an associate justice of the Supreme Court — not really: She was a legislator in judicial drag.

    You need not take my word on this: Ask her admirers. “Ruth Bader Ginsburg had a vision for America,” Linda Hirshman argues in the Washington Post. What was her vision? “To make America fairer, to make justice bigger.” That is not a job for a judge — that is a job for a legislator. The job of making law properly belongs to — some people find this part hard to handle — lawmakers. Making law is not the job of the judge. The job of the judge is to see that the law is followed and applied in a given case. It does not matter if the law is unfair or if the law is unjust — that is not the judge’s concern. If you have a vision for America, and desire to make the law more fair or more just, then there is a place for you: Congress. That is where the laws are made.
    • Related: "Explaining Jews, part V: Why are Jews liberal?" by Dennis Prager. Prager, who is Jewish, lists several reasons why American Jews are so liberal (a trait not shared by other populations of Jews). Most seem to be phobias left over from Nazi Germany and the  Holocaust, including a strong anti-nationalistic bent. But one of the other reasons:
    Despite their secularism, Jews may be the most religious ethnic group in the world. The problem is that their religion is rarely Judaism; rather it is every ‘ism’ of the Left. These include liberalism, socialism, feminism, Marxism and environmentalism. Jews involved in these movements believe in them with the same ideological fervor and same suspension of critical reason with which many religious people believe in their religion. It is therefore usually as hard to shake a liberal Jew’s belief in the Left and in the Democratic Party as it is to shake an evangelical Christian’s belief in Christianity. The big difference, however, is that the Christian believer acknowledges his Christianity is a belief, whereas the believer in liberalism views his belief as entirely the product of rational inquiry.

    The Jews’ religious fervor emanates from the origins of the Jewish people as a religious people elected by God to help guide humanity to a better future. Of course, the original intent was to bring humanity to ethical monotheism, God-based universal moral standards, not to secular liberalism or to feminism or to socialism. Leftist Jews have simply secularized their religious calling.

Or, as Anonymous Conservative would likely sum up, American Jews are strongly r-selected.

Judge Amy Coney Barrett, President Trump’s pick for the Supreme Court, has compiled an almost uniformly conservative voting record in cases touching on abortion, gun rights, discrimination and immigration. If she is confirmed, she would move the court slightly but firmly to the right, making compromise less likely and putting at risk the right to abortion established in Roe v. Wade.
Conservatives are rightly skeptical of the mania surrounding diversity. They know that, when you lift up the lid, you find race hustlers shaking down corporations, mediocre academics in “ethnic studies,” and guttersnipe actors and musicians promoted well beyond their aesthetic abilities. In short, we see a scam designed to steer power and money to certain groups and away from others. More importantly, while the alleged goal of promoting diversity is social harmony, diversity huckstering has instead produced seething hatreds, racial and gender finger-pointing, and a degradation of cultural standards.
    ... under the above socialism idea, we must involuntarily give up a portion of the fruits of our labor.  Under Christian ideals, we should voluntarily share.  In which case are the fruits most likely to be squandered or subverted for personal gain?

    Does my Christian obligation to feed the hungry constitute a hungry person’s right to take what I have?  Have I fulfilled my gospel obligation to feed the hungry if I vote for someone who promises to raise taxes to that end?  Will such count as good works?

    While socialism says must, Christianity says should.  And failing to do so?  Under socialism, punishment.  With Christianity, absence of reward.  Which is the better long-run motivator? 
  • Strange how we don't hear more about this: "Survival rates for COVID-19"--Behind the Black. The author notes that per the CDC the survival rates for COVID-19 are: 
    • 0-19 years: 99.997%
    • 20-49 years: 99.98%
    • 50-69 years: 99.5%
    • 70+ years: 94.6%
He adds: "Those numbers are practically identical to those of the flu. In other words, practically no one dies from it. It makes some people sick for a week or so, and then goes away. And we have destroyed western civilization over this."
    • Related: "Just 1% of US Counties Have Had Nearly Half of All COVID-19 Deaths"--The Daily Signal. "... just 1% of the counties in the U.S., representing just over 18% of the population, are responsible for almost half of the country’s COVID-19 deaths." Also: "New York City has exerted an outsized influence on the national COVID-19-related death rate. Removing New York City’s deaths moves the U.S. from eighth place in the world in deaths per million to 13th place."
  • "Could Pricey Urban Meccas become Crime-Ridden Ghost Towns?"--Charles Hugh Smith. I had recently argued that the future will be mega-cities, but in this article written in 2019, Smith lays out the political and economic factors that could actually see our large cities empty. Smith sets out four steps or factors that will lead to the decline: (1) although the top 1% will probably still live in their pricey walled communities and carefully guarded high-rises, Smith predicts that living conditions will eventually reach an inflection point where those in the top 10% who can leave (i.e., their jobs do not depend on their location) will do so; (2) once the top 10% leave, the food and beverage industries (and other service industries) that depend on the top 10% for their income will implode, and this will result in layoffs and job losses that will force those workers to leave; (3) the loss of tax revenue will force cities to reduce the number of city workers and cut services, and many of these workers will also be forced to leave; and (4) because of sticky real estate prices, the cost of buying or leasing a place to live will remain high after the outflow and not adjust quickly enough to the collapsing demand, and this will, in turn, help accelerate the exodus. Between declining infrastructure and reductions in law enforcement, and the COVID-19 closures and rioting, we are seeing steps (1) and (2) happening. It will be interesting to see how this plays out over the long run.
  • China is now into, what, 4 months of constant flooding, but still can't see the writing on the wall: "China Rewrites Jesus With The Woman Caught In Adultery"--The Hill. This is in reference to the story of the woman caught in adultery and brought before Christ to try and trap him should he urge that the woman not be stoned. As we all know, the story ends with Christ challenging the members of the crowd to let the man without sin cast the first stone. In shame, the crowd leaves, and Christ tells the woman to go and sin no more. But, in a textbook on ethics, the CCP changed the story as follows: “When the crowd disappeared, Jesus stoned the sinner to death saying, ‘I, too, am a sinner. But if the law could only be executed by men without blemish, the law would be dead.’”
  • "Spielberg's religious fraud"--Vox Popoli. Steven Spielberg’s movie Schindler’s List apparently included the line: “The Talmud teaches that to save one life is to save the entire world.” The reality is a bit more nuanced:
    ... The motto, dramatized in the film, is a purported to be a quote from BT Sanhedrin 37a, but the Talmud contains no such humanistic, universalist statement.

    The uncensored Babylonian Talmud in Sanhedrin 37a is concerned only with the welfare of fully human beings, i.e. those described in its text as “Jews.” The actual Talmud tractate reads: “Whoever saves a single life in Israel, Scripture regards him as if he had saved the entire world”

It reminds me of how followers of the Religion of Peace assert that taking an innocent life is contrary to Islamic law without informing you that only Muslims are considered "innocent." 
    Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Democratic socialists brigade wants to turn New York City far-left — from the ground up.

    The Democratic Socialists of America-NYC is pushing to put up or back a slate of City Council candidates who, if elected, would create a “socialist caucus.”

    The overwhelmingly Democratic council is vulnerable next year to the left-of-left push with 35 out of 51 council seats up for grabs due to term limits. Only 16 council members can run for re-election.
    Among those who say they've come close to the ship is small-town librarian Myrtle Botts. In 1933, she was hiking with her husband in the Anza-Borrego Desert, not far from the border with Mexico. It was early March, so the desert would have been in bloom, its washed-out yellows and grays beaten back by the riotous invasion of wildflowers. Those wildflowers were what brought the Bottses to the desert, and they ended up near a tiny settlement called Agua Caliente. Surrounding place names reflected the strangeness and severity of the land: Moonlight Canyon, Hellhole Canyon, Indian Gorge.

    To enter the desert is to succumb to the unknowable. One morning, a prospector appeared in the couple's camp with news far more astonishing than a new species of desert flora: He'd found a ship lodged in the rocky face of Canebrake Canyon. The vessel was made of wood, and there was a serpentine figure carved into its prow. There were also impressions on its flanks where shields had been attached—all the hallmarks of a Viking craft. Recounting the episode later, Botts said she and her husband saw the ship but couldn't reach it, so they vowed to return the following day, better prepared for a rugged hike. That wasn't to be, because, several hours later, there was a 6.4 magnitude earthquake in the waters off Huntington Beach, in Southern California. Botts claimed it dislodged rocks that buried her Viking ship, which she never saw again.
    Indian and Chinese troops battled each other over worthless ground along their undefined border high in the Himalayas. It was a classic case of two bald men fighting over a comb. But at least 20 Indian soldiers died, along with an unknown number of Chinese.

    What is interesting about this skirmish is the weapons employed. Both India and China have sizable arsenals of modern weapons. They employed none of them. Instead, they fought with rocks and clubs. 
    I find the deafening silence over this choice of weapons, including from the U.S. military, to be interesting. It certainly should draw the attention of anyone who studies where war may be going. Why did such a bizarre scenario unfold? Because both countries have nuclear weapons.

    It is probably true that neither India nor China wants a war at this point. But what limited both countries’ soldiers to the weapons of cavemen was something with general import: so terrifying is the prospect of nuclear war to anyone threatened with it that governments are willing, even eager, to go to seemingly ridiculous lengths to prevent it.

    Prevention begins with avoiding the escalatory ladder. And that is what led to a fight with rocks and clubs. Both countries rightly feared that if they went to the weapons of, let’s say Sung dynasty China or Moghul India, they would set foot on that ladder. So rocks and clubs it had to be. Even a battle with those so alarmed Beijing and New Delhi that they quickly sought to settle the dispute diplomatically. Many weapons have claimed the title of “the Peacemaker”, but nuclear weapons actually deserve it.

    This offers us a look at what war between other nuclear powers, let’s say the U.S. and China, might be like. The driving consideration for both countries’ leadership would be avoiding escalation. Since any confrontation would probably be a sea and air war, it might look something like the Cod Wars between Britain and Iceland. Ships might ram each other (not too hard). Water cannon might be employed. Chinese sailors might throw bao at American crews, who would volley back hamburgers in return (the Americans would end up with the better lunch). Fighter aircraft might engage, at least to the point of seeing who was better at staying on the other guy’s six. Would they shoot? If they did, both capitals would be frantic, trying to de-escalate.

  • Final thoughts: This year has seen outsized reactions to mostly trivial matters: a pandemic that was hardly worse than seasonal flu and mostly concentrated to large urban areas, but which resulted in widespread, onerous lockdowns that crushed the economy; and widespread rioting over a black criminal that died from a drug overdose while in police custody, and political violence centered around the coming presidential election. 

    My belief is that as hard as this year has been, it has, in a certain way, been a blessing because it has been a dry run for the disasters that will come. Wondering about what an economic crash might do to distribution systems, your job or the jobs of others, and whether you had properly prepared? Well, you have a pretty good idea of the shortfall now. Wondering about how riots and mobs might arise and act as social and government systems fail? Now you know. Worried about how massive volcanic explosions might impact the environment? Well, the massive fires along the West Coast (actually along I-5) have produced ash and smoke plumes that have blanketed much of the United States, and are a perfect opportunity to see if that solar system will give you enough energy in dim lighting.

    In short, we have all had our preparations tested in one way or another this past 6 to 7 months. We have been given a preview of what is to come. Take stock of this and note what worked, what didn't, and where you can improve.

Docent's Memo (May 16, 2022)

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