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Chicago’s murder rate drops – follow-up

In an earlier post on Chicago’s declining murder rate, the decline didn’t seem to prove anything about gun control or gun ownership (in any direction) and I asked “So, what happened?”

V the K suggested a different explanation by sending this link, The Truth About Chicago’s Crime Rates. Short answer: Someone has been cooking the books.

On October 28, a pathologist ruled the death of Tiara Groves a homicide…the Chicago Police Department should have counted Groves’s death as a murder. And it did. Until December 18. On that day, the police report indicates, a lieutenant overseeing the Groves case reclassified the homicide investigation as a noncriminal death investigation…

The change stunned officers. Current and former veteran detectives who reviewed the Groves case at Chicago’s request were just as incredulous.

Was it just a coincidence, some wondered, that the reclassification occurred less than two weeks before the end of the year, when the city of Chicago’s final homicide numbers for 2013 would be tallied? …

For the case of Tiara Groves is not an isolated one. Chicago [Magazine, the authors] conducted a 12-month examination of the Chicago Police Department’s crime statistics going back several years…We identified 10 people…whose cases were reclassified…, downgraded to more minor crimes, or even closed as noncriminal incidents—all for illogical or, at best, unclear reasons.

This troubling practice goes far beyond murders…Chicago found dozens of other crimes, including serious felonies such as robberies, burglaries, and assaults, that were misclassified, downgraded to wrist-slap offenses, or made to vanish altogether…

Does the problem start at the top? Evidently:

Many officers of different ranks and from different parts of the city recounted instances…One detective refers to the “magic ink”: the power to make a case disappear. Says another: “The rank and file don’t agree with what’s going on. The powers that be are making the changes.”

…sources describe a practice that has become widespread at the same time that top police brass have become fixated on demonstrating improvement in Chicago’s woeful crime statistics…

…the see-no-evil, hear-no-evil pols on Chicago’s City Council have mostly accepted the police department’s crime numbers at face value. So have most in the media. You can hardly turn on the news without hearing McCarthy or Mayor Rahm Emanuel proclaiming unquestioned: Murders down 18 percent in 2013! Overall crime down 23 percent! Twelve thousand fewer crime victims! “These days, everything is about media and public opinion,” says one longtime officer. “If a number makes people feel safe, then why not give it to them?”

There’s much more, including a Part 2 yet to come.

Why the Democrats “Koch Derangement Strategy” Might Actually Work

In the last six weeks, the Democrats have demonized the Koch Brothers 117 times on the floor of the United States senate. Clearly, this is not about two businessmen using their fortune to champion libertarian, free market principles… even though the Democrats hate those things. This is about the Democrats needing a demon to drive their dumb, low information, emotion-driven base to the polls.

Obviously, Democrats can’t run on their policies. Obamacare is a disaster. The Chevy Volt is a disaster (and, by the way, Government Motors has been literally killing people and the Obama Regime has been covering it up). The Obama Regime’s “Speak Like a Pompous Idiot and Carry a Tiny Twig” foreign policy is a disaster. Once Democrats get beyond their basic “We’re going to take money away from people you don’t like and give it to you” appeals to the FSA (e.g. the Minimum Wage increase, “Paycheck Protection”), the Democrats don’t have any ideas or successes to run on; and so, they have chosen to make a pair of Libertarian businessmen into demons, and use the awesome power of hate to get their people to the polls.

And Republicans make a mistake if they look at the deranged rants of Harry Reid and say, “Who could possibly believe this crazy sh-t?” Sane people asked the same question in 2012 when Harry Reid was ranting that Mitt Romney didn’t pay his taxes, and the Obama campaign accused Mitt Romney of giving a woman cancer and wanting to outlaw tampons and contraceptives. “Who could possibly believe this crazy sh-t?” we asked.

And then we got our answer: 51% of the electorate bought into the Democrats crazy sh-t.

It worked before it could work again. It helps a lot when the MFM are also in on the act. Just yesterday, the left-wing media was spreading the bald-faced lie that Mitch McConnell said the Demcorats had a “crazy obsession” with equal pay for women. And the MFM will do their best to help the Democrats in 2014; seizing on the gaffes of Republicans and ignoring the outright corruption of Democrats like Mr. Charlie Rangel, Mr. Elijah Cummings, Senator Bob Menendez, and the felonies of Democrats like Leland Yee.

And the Republicans are doing their best to help the Democrats with their strategy of … proposing no policy alternatives, quietly caving to Obama on any potentially contentious issue, and picking unnecessary fights with the conservative wing of the party and, in some cases, even actively helping to advance advance the Democrat “narrative” that Republicans are racist.

The Republicans should have learned in 2012; crazy, angry, and stupid can win elections if it isn’t countered.

 

 

Today’s sadly-ironic headline

Posted by Jeff (ILoveCapitalism) at 5:10 pm - April 9, 2014.
Filed under: Big Government Follies,Crony Capitalism Consequences

HP pays $108 million to settle foreign bribery probes:

WARSAW/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Hewlett-Packard agreed to pay $108 million to resolve wide-ranging U.S. government investigations into whether some of its foreign units bribed government officials to obtain lucrative contracts, U.S. officials said on Wednesday.

HP’s Russia subsidiary pleaded guilty…Polish and Mexican units of the computing giant also resolved U.S. criminal charges related to contracts they had won in those countries…

Get it?

  1. Foreign companies (owned by HP) paid fees that foreign officials demanded of them. Everyone called these fees “bribes” in order to displace the guilt, that is, to hide the extortion aspect.
  2. U.S. officials were jealous so they, in turn, demanded and got $108 million from HP. Everyone called these fees “settling criminal charges under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act”, again in order to displace the guilt, that is, to hide the bottom-line extortion aspect.

Rob Lowe Is the Man

Posted by V the K at 1:59 pm - April 9, 2014.
Filed under: Freedom

Sing it, you crazy brat-packer.

“My thing is personal freedoms, freedoms for the individual to love whom they want, do with what they want. In fact, I want the government out of almost everything.”

Amen, Brother, Amen.

Pro-business or pro-market?

Jonah Goldberg makes a great distinction:

…the difference between being pro-business and pro-market is categorical. A politician who is a “friend of business” is exactly that, a guy who does favors for his friends. A politician who is pro-market is a referee who will refuse to help protect his friends (or anyone else) from competition unless the competitors have broken the rules. The friend of business supports industry-specific or even business-specific loans, grants, tariffs, or tax breaks. The pro-market referee opposes special treatment for anyone.

Goldberg’s point is that the GOP must make up its mind about which one it is. Pro-business is crony capitalism, venture socialism and Big Government as we know it today. Pro-market is more the Tea Party putting real checks on Washington. Goldberg describes the GOP’s dilemma in more detail; RTWT.

To make my view clear: I am not pro-business, I am absolutely pro-market. The mentality that the economy would boom (and America would be great again) if only we could vote in smart people to tinker with the economy in good ways – if only the Republicans had power to do better Washington-y things than the Democrats do – that mentality is part of what has gotten America into a hole.

The truth is, nothing that government does to rig interfere with markets and business outcomes is ever much good. It never turns out anything as well as the politicians said it would, and never as well as what markets – that is, free people – could do, if left to their own devices.

Smart car tipping

Posted by Jeff (ILoveCapitalism) at 10:52 am - April 9, 2014.
Filed under: American Youth,Social Issues

Somebody went on a Smart car tipping spree in San Francisco, in the last couple of days:

Motive is unclear. Some are trying to make it into a social-conflict story, but this fun-looking example from 2011 looks to me like young guys doing it “because they can”.

UPDATE: Ed Driscoll cites it as an example of the Luddite Left. Sorry, Ed. I know that the Luddite Left is real, but let’s not over-interpret. Smart cars are surely too lame to have inspired any serious Luddism.

The Ghey Left Finds Yet Another Thing to Whine About

Posted by V the K at 10:21 am - April 9, 2014.
Filed under: Gay PC Silliness

Lesbian gets pulled over in San Francisco, blames homophobia.

There we sat in our car comforting each other after the officer drove away and we finally parked the car. We were both very upset. Unfairly targeted and forced to stay silent in the moment because of the balance of power, we could only replay what had just happened over and over.

Also, the reason that barrista put real milk in your caramel macchiato when you told her “Soy Milk” three times AND made her say it back to you just to be sure… homophobia.

Also, the reason your manager at the Fair Trade Locavore Matriarchal Food Co-Operative gave you the Saturday shift even though you told her you didn’t work weekends… homophobia.

Also, the reason your iPhone had spotty service and no 4G at the Womyn’s Leather Retreat… homophobia.

Yup, everything’s coming up homophobia.

More Derangement from Pelosiland

Nancy Pelosi’s constituents have turned on Silicon Valley in a big way. As reported here earlier, there’s this big movement against companies like Google and Facebook providing buses to transport their employees from their homes in the city to their Company Cult Compounds. Today, the sophisticated progressives of San Francisco raised the intellectual level of their debate by puking on a bus; not by getting motion sickness during a long bus ride, but actually climbing on top of a bus for the purpose of puking on its windshield.

As a form of protest, it’s still better than what they did to Brendan Eich.

So, I’m reading that story and I’m thinking, “The left condemns people for living in the city and taking mass transportation to get to their jobs, for causing “gentrification. But, they also condemn people who live in the suburbs and commute to work for causing ‘urban sprawl.’”

You can’t win an argument with deranged people.

Also, someone in SFO has been flipping over SMART cars. Or maybe it was just windy last night.

Speaking of Silicon Valley, watching the first episode of Mike Judge’s new HBO series would not be a waste of half an hour. (The increasingly deranged and irrelevant Roger Ebert hated it, so there’s that.)

Recovery for the One Percent

To continue my series on this, I’ve been accumulating chart links. There are so many, especially on Zero Hedge which has great coverage. I’ll make some introductory remarks, then show the charts.

As a capitalist, I have no objection to the good inequality that investors, employers and consumers award by their actions in the marketplace. The problem is inequality awarded by force or fraud. That includes crime of course; but the systemic problems in our economy today arise, sooner or later, from *government force* and fraud. Under President Obama – and our nut-job economic planners at the Federal Reserve – we have more government intervention than ever. We also have more inequality. It can’t be a coincidence.

I believe that Obama likes it on some level, because the more inequality there is, the more he can offer (still more) government intervention as the alleged “solution”. While our problems did not start with Obama, he has exploited and worsened them because inequality of power – taking ever-greater amounts of power away from the People, giving ever-more power to the Party/bureaucrats/government – is the deep tendency of the State, and as well, the deep goal of the Left.

I could talk about the explosion of welfare dependency under Obama, which rapes the “working poor” (among others) for the sake of the “lazy poor”. But my focus today is on the rape of the middle class for the so-called “One Percent”, the wealthier people who gain from our government-planned economy and government-rigged markets.

The charts show that under Obama, U.S. income inequality has increased and may be the biggest it’s ever been.

Under Obama, U.S. income inequality is the greatest it's ever been

More charts: (more…)

Jeb Bush and the Republican Aristocracy

Posted by V the K at 11:38 am - April 8, 2014.
Filed under: Jeb Bush

I can think of few things as sure to fail as a Jeb Bush presidential campaign in 2016. I suspect Jeb Bush knows this. Not even his own mother wants him to run.  In that light, I kind of suspect that his recent comments on illegal immigration (“Yes, they broke the law, but it’s not a felony; it’s an act of love”) are a form of trolling; injecting asinine commentary into a debate just to stir the pot. But his remarks on immigration and Common Core do help reveal the mindset of the Republican Aristocracy.

[I refuse to call them elites; "elite" implies a meritocracy. Aristocracy implies a group of people united by blood ties, privilege, and inherited wealth hat's a better description of the Bushes and the rest of the Republican gentry.]

The reason Jeb Bush (and the rest of the Aristocracy) can be so cavalier about illegal immigration is because an influx of millions of illegal immigrants is not going to affect his wealth, status, or comfort. It just means the Country Club pays less for lawn maintenance, and the multinationals in his portfolio can lower labor costs and maximize dividends. No one in the Bush family works as a carpenter, or a roofer, or any other occupation where an illegal will take their job. They don’t attend public schools where resources have been stretched to accommodate a flood of non-English speakers. They are unlikely to have to wait in an emergency room or a welfare office crowded with illegals.

His attitude toward ‘Common Core’ is similarly aligned with the views of an Aristocrat.

“I want to hear their solutions for the hodgepodge of dumbed-down state standards that have created group mediocrity in our schools.”

Get it? Jeb Bush simply believes that he and his class know what’s best for everybody; and those dumb hicks running the states are just too dumb to know what’s best for the children in their states. And if he and the Federal Aristocracy don’t crack the whip, the states will be teaching kids to eat lead paint chips and reading materials will consist of back issues of Hustler and TV Guide. The idea that states, freed of the micromanagement of the Federal bureaucracy, might actually educate their kids better is a foreign concept to a man steeped in privilege.

Both of our parties are run by people long, long out of touch with the concerns, challenges, and capabilities of ordinary working people; which is why, at the end of the day, they both end up supporting the same failed policy formulations; based on the belief that any problem can be managed if enough money is thrown at it, and enough “good people” are put in charge of it.

The idea that the “little people,” left alone and given enough freedom, might be able to work things out on their own without the gilded leadership of the Ivy League aristocracy is an absolutely alien concept to them.

Postcards from the Public Education Bizarro World

So, the other day in Chris Christie’s New Jersey, a 13 year old in New Jersey was suspended for twirling a pencil in a manner that someone might twirl a gun.

Yes, really.

Also, in the People’s Republic of California, this happened. A science teacher caught a thug dealing drugs in his classroom. He demanded that the thug hand over the drugs. The thug refused and took a swing at the teacher. The teacher subdued the thug and called security.

And, what happened next was… the teacher was suspended, and the school superintendent reached out to the thug’s parents to apologize and promise it would never happen again.

Yes, really.

sup 140 -01After a massive outcry from the non-bizarro public, the Superintendent issued a meticulously crafted bureaucratic fauxpology. (more…)

A 1,000 Word Argument (Equivalent) Against Increasing the Minimum Wage

Posted by V the K at 7:42 am - April 8, 2014.
Filed under: Economy

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(i.e. Why would any employer pay someone $15.00 an hour for a job that can be performed by a touchscreen?)

(more…)

Greg Gutfeld Makes the Conservative Case for Gay Marriage

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 3:36 pm - April 7, 2014.
Filed under: Civil Discourse,Conservative Ideas,Gay Marriage

Yes, friends, it has been a while since last I blogged. Now, to be sure, I have scribbled out several ideas for posts, mostly related to civil discourse and gay marriage, an issue much in the news these past few with what one blogress (citing Taranto) called ”the defenestration of Brendan Eich.

On the whole, our national debate on gay marriage has been mightily lame, with all too many advocates calling opponents “haters” or “bigots” and with some opponents contending that gay married couples aren’t capable of assuming the responsibilities of the ancient and honorable institution.

Well, in his new book, Not Cool, Greg Gutfeld actually contributes to the debate on gay marriage:

What marriage does for straight men–narrowing choice and creating a structure that encourages and preserves a healthy, prosperous life–should be available to men who prefer other men.  And if two ladies want to get hitched, go for it.  Maybe because I’m more worried about straight marriage than gay marriage.  As divorce rates rise, and illegitimacy rates skyrocket, it’s pretty clear the disintegration of marriage is not a promising path for all involved.  Why ban something for others that keeps the others from destroying themselves?

When marriage is what Gutfeld describes it to be, then it is a good thing, whether the spouses be of different sexes — or the same sex.

NB:  Several typos fixed since initial publication.

Charles Koch Speaks

We allowed the Eich/Mozilla brouhaha to obscure this, but it addresses the same underlying problem: the fascist intolerance of the “progressive” Left.

Last week, one of the Koch brothers responded to Harry Reid’s outrageous attacks demonizing them:

Charles Koch: I’m Fighting to Restore a Free Society

Updated April 2, 2014 7:47 p.m. ET

I have devoted most of my life to understanding the principles that enable people to improve their lives. It is those principles—the principles of a free society—that have shaped my life, my family, our company and America itself.

Unfortunately, the fundamental concepts of dignity, respect, equality before the law and personal freedom are under attack by the nation’s own government…[and] we have no choice but to fight for those principles. I have been doing so for more than 50 years, primarily through educational efforts. It was only in the past decade that I realized the need to also engage in the political process.

…In a truly free society, any business that disrespects its customers will fail, and deserves to do so. The same should be true of any government that disrespects its citizens. The central belief and fatal conceit of the current administration is that you are incapable of running your own life, but those in power are capable of running it for you…

More than 200 years ago, Thomas Jefferson warned that this could happen. “The natural progress of things,” Jefferson wrote, “is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground.” He knew that no government could possibly run citizens’ lives for the better. The more government tries to control, the greater the disaster, as shown by the current health-care debacle…

Instead of encouraging free and open debate, collectivists strive to discredit and intimidate opponents. They engage in character assassination. (I should know, as the almost daily target of their attacks.) This is the approach that Arthur Schopenhauer described in the 19th century, that Saul Alinsky famously advocated in the 20th, and that so many despots have infamously practiced…

…I have spent decades opposing cronyism and all political favors, including mandates, subsidies and protective tariffs—even when we benefit from them. I believe that cronyism is nothing more than welfare for the rich and powerful, and should be abolished…

He gives more, including some facts/details. (I’d reprint the article fully, except I haven’t obtained permission.) RTWT.

UPDATE: Also not to be missed is Kevin D. Williamson on The Liberal Gulag.

Welcome to the Liberal Gulag.

That term may be perverse, but it is not an exaggeration. Mr. [Adam] Weinstein [of Mother Jones] specifically called for political activists, ranging from commentators to think-tank researchers, to be locked in cages as punishment for their political beliefs. “Those denialists should face jail,” he wrote. “You still can’t” — banality alert! — “yell ‘fire’ in a crowded theater. You shouldn’t be able to yell ‘balderdash’ at 10,883 scientific journal articles a year.” “Balderdash” — a felony. At the risk of being repetitious, let’s dwell on that for a minute: The Left is calling on people to be prosecuted for speaking their minds regarding their beliefs on an important public-policy question that is, as a political matter, the subject of hot dispute. That is the stuff of Soviet repression.

And much more.

Chicago murder rate drops

Posted by Jeff (ILoveCapitalism) at 11:18 am - April 7, 2014.
Filed under: Chicago Politics,Gun Control,Second Amendment

after Illinois loosened gun control:

On July 9, 2013, a bill to recognize Illinois gun owners’ right to carry concealed firearms was passed by both chambers of the state Legislature. Illinois became the last state in the nation to allow [it]…

On Tuesday, the Chicago Police Department announced that the city experienced its lowest murder rate since 1958 in the first quarter of 2014. There were 6 fewer murders than the same timeframe in 2013 — a 9 percent drop — and 55 fewer murders than 2012, police said…

BUT (and as Jason Howerton responsibly notes), coincidence is nothing like causation:

All crime is down 25 percent from 2013 and police say they have confiscated over 1,300 illegal guns in the last three months…

It should also be noted that the first concealed carry permits were issued in late February, so the decrease in crime can’t yet be attributed to more people carrying guns.

So, what happened? Did the killers in Chicago reach a point where a large number of them had been killed (by victims possibly, or by each other), leaving the law-abiding residents in greater peace? That may be about to happen in Detroit:

Detroit…police chief, James Craig, has advised “fed up” residents to exercise their Second Amendment rights if they feel their life is in danger.

He said criminals should be afraid to break into homes or commit other crimes because it could be the last thing they ever do. Craig also pointed out, “you’re not always going to have time to dial 911.”

…the number of fatal self-defense shootings are on the rise in Detroit. There had already been 10 fatal self-defense shootings in the city as of March 27, while there were only 15 in all of 2013.

Fascinating issues.

Because There Is Nothing I Feel Like Long Form Commenting on This Morning

Posted by V the K at 11:07 am - April 7, 2014.
Filed under: Humor

Nothing left to say about Mozilla, except I’m trying out Pale Moon and Torch in preparation for uninstalling Fascistfox. So far so good.

Hillary created a fake Twitter account so she could pretend to have “faith and values” supporters on her side. But we all pretty much already knew that her support is all low-info voters, greedy cronies, and astroturf.

This is kinda funny; the Global Warming Cult in the UK is demanding that the new High-Speed Rail train not be quite so … um, high-speed. Because… ManBearPig. Meh, damn thing was a boondoggle anyway.

The Democrats have found a congressional candidate even nastier and crazier than Alan Grayson. The Democrat base, naturally, is in love with the guy.

Anyway, here’s this. I am sure it will offend the progressive left being, you know, funny.

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Soros & Lewis behind marijuana legalization?

From Kelly Riddell at the Washington Times:

With a cadre of like-minded, wealthy donors, Mr. Soros is dominating the pro-legalization side of the marijuana debate by funding grass-roots initiatives that begin in New York City and end up affecting local politics elsewhere.

Wait a minute, “grass-roots”? I get the pun, but when a billionaire secretly bankrolls groups to push his agenda, isn’t the proper term “astro-turfing”? Anyway:

Through a network of nonprofit groups, Mr. Soros has spent at least $80 million on the legalization effort since 1994…

His spending has been supplemented by [recently-deceased billionaire] Peter B. Lewis…an unabashed pot smoker who channeled more than $40 million…

What is it, with the Democrats/Left giving a pass to all their manipulative billionaires?

Mr. Soros’ Open Society Foundations have annual assets of more than $3.5 billion, a pool from which he can dole out grants to pet projects, according to 2011 tax returns, the most recent on file for his charitable organizations.

David and Charles Koch, the billionaire brothers who often are cited for their conservative influence, had $308 million tied up in their foundation and institute in 2011.

Finally, I may as well state my own view, and readers can agree or disagree. I do oppose prohibition of marijuana for the same reason I oppose prohibition of alcohol: the prohibition doesn’t work and creates more problems than it solves. Having said that, I don’t use the stuff and find its heavy users (or addicts) repellant.

Points to Ponder

Posted by V the K at 11:09 pm - April 6, 2014.
Filed under: Communism,Gay Politics,Ideas & Trends

The good news is, by next Sunday, the Mozilla controversy will be yesterday’s news. The bad news is, the gay fascists will be behaving even more obnoxiously by then.

But in the meantime, Matt Walsh thinks l’affaire Mozillique has stripped the mask off the gay activists.

It’s no secret anymore. Without question and without exaggeration, the ‘gay rights movement’ is the angriest, most ruthless, most controlling, most intolerant of all the ideological enterprises in the country. Now, everyone knows it.

And the Bookworm Room blog argues “We don’t have a “gay mafia,” we have a “gay Soviet.”

Once, we were a country that used its government to advance the notion that “that every person is entitled to a private life and deserves respect as a human being, irrespective of the extent of his political loyalty or contribution to the state.” Now, we’re a Soviet nation, in which private citizens are told that they must publicly recant their heresies or be destroyed.

I think they’re both right. And the really sad and scary part is most of the gay activist left is happy about what they’ve brought down on us.

Jeb Bush Says Illegal Immigration is “An Act of Love”

Posted by V the K at 4:58 pm - April 6, 2014.
Filed under: Jeb Bush

The Establishment GOP is really going out of its way to grind my gears this week.

“I’m going to say this and it will be on tape, and so be it. The way I look at this is someone who comes to our country because they couldn’t come legally, they come to our country because their family’s dad who loves their children was worried that their children didn’t have food on the table, and they wanted to make sure their family was intact. And they crossed the border because they had no other means to work to be able to provide for their family. Yes, they broke the law, but it’s not a felony. it’s kind of — it’s a — it’s an act of love.”

Yeah, well what about 30 Million unemployed Americans who would like to feed and take care of their families but can’t because your illegal amigos are listening to raps and shooting all the jobs?

I just hope to God Bush closed a bridge and caused a traffic jam at some point in his governorship. It’s too much to hope he donated money to an anti-marriage group.

The Party of Thieves

Two loosely related items:

1. $75,000 in television equipment was stolen at the Democrat National Convention in 2012, presumably by delegates and other attendees.

2. Democrat Criminal Jesse Jackson Jr is getting out of prison early.

But remember; the only real crime is being opposed to the redefinition of marriage.