Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 5/21/18: Comments, Clarkson, Bitter Hillary, And Weiner Dogs Amuck

Good morning, all.

1. Housekeeping note: Some commenters are expressing displeasure that I suspended a regular participant here following what I consider to be excessively disrespectful discourse toward me. Well. when they try moderating an ethics blog read by educated, passionate and verbally adept people for nine years, I’ll pay more attention to that displeaure. The task is much like that of a lion-tamer in the circus: as I learned when I read the autobiography of one who survived until retirement, the big cats growling is fine, and even the occasional swipe for show is tolerable, but when they start being disrespectful, you either show who’s boss quick or you get gang-mauled and eaten.

In about two weeks, I have to fly to Boston—on my own dime, of course— to ask a judge to dismiss a $100,000 defamation lawsuit from a banned commenter here. Am I bit inclined to be less than charitable to rude commenter outbursts aimed at me right now? Yes. The matter at issue right now involved flat-out, unambiguous personal mockery and derision, and the Comment Policies, accessible for years on the link above, specifically designate “6) Mockery without substance”  as commentary conduct that is not appreciated, , and also notes that a commenter risks be discipline for “…Insulting me, in particular by questioning my integrity, honesty, objectivity, intentions, motives, qualifications, or credentials.”

The commenter who was suspended can return to the wars at any time he chooses, after offering an acceptable apology.

2. Breaking my vow already…to eschew writing about the aftermath of the latest school shooting, I have to mention that Lelly Clarkson’s emotional speech at last night’s Billborad awards was played this morning on CNN and Headline News—and I assume elsewhere—as if she actually was saying something of substance. She wasn’t:

Is the news media going to keep on trying to steer a policy debate with complex social, legal, constitutional, cultural and practical factors into this emotion-flooded, intellectually useless dead end? Apparently so. I’m sure Kelly is sincere, but “moment of action” is nothing but another way of saying “do something,” which itself is just another form of screaming at the sky. What action, Kelly? Unless you make a relevant proposal that addresses the event you are crying about, your statement is worse than useless.

We should not keep pandering to this invitation to turn off our brains regarding guns, yet that is what the news media is actively campaigning for us to do.  They are irresponsible to do this.

But we knew that.

3.  Ballad of An Ethics Corrupter. Hillary Clinton spoke at the Yale graduation ceremonies. What an awful role model she is. I find her continuing quest to be the worst loser in American history—she has already lapped Richard Nixon, but still trails Aaron Burr–embarrassing and depressing, but even worse are her enablers. Listen to Hillary yesterday—all delivered with a palpable fury evident in her eyes, her voice and her body language:

Let me just get this out of the way: No, I’m not over it. I still think about the 2016 election. I still regret the mistakes I made  [Funny: all we’re heard is how Russia, the Electoral College, The DNC, Sexism and misogyny, the fake history that parties don’t win three Presidential elections in a row, Bernie, Wikileaks, her campaign strategists, the debate questions, journalists, campaign financing, President Obama, TV coverage, stupid voters, and weak women yielding to pressure from men lost her the election. Oh, that’s right: she regrets calling Trump supporters “deplorables,” though she still says that’s what they are.] Right now, we’re living through a full-fledged crisis in our democracy. Now there are not tanks in the streets, but what’s happening right now goes to the heart of who we are as a nation. I say this not as a Democrat who lost an election but as an American afraid of losing a country. [Is she talking about her party’s efforts, using the press and  partisan Justice Department officials, to facilitate a soft coup against the man who defeated her ? Sounds like it, but somehow I don’t think that’s her meaning.]

Clinton brought a Russian fur hat, known as an ushanka, bearing a Soviet-era hammer and sickle emblem. “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em,” she said.

She’s truly despicable. Does it not occur to Clinton that as the first woman to run for President, her acting this way, so long after the election, harms the cause of aspiring women leaders? She might realize that. She just doesn’t care. She’s angry, and she’s going to act out, probably until she drops. Shame on Yale for enabling her.

4.  And this is why local governments ban pit bulls...Tracy Garcia was standing outside her Oklahoma home last week when she was attacked and mauled by a pack of dogs, leaving her with injuries so severe that she later died. The doctor at Westwood Veterinary Hospital posted on Facebook Tuesday that to him, the dogs appeared to be pit bulls, and that is how the tragedy was initially reported, as a pit bull attack.

Weeelll, that wasn’t quite right. It turned out that the vicious dogs were dachshunds.  You know…these:

You see, as we have discussed ad nauseum here and in other posts, pit bulls frequently get blamed as a reflex whenever there is a dog attack, because most people, even some vets apparently, don’t know dog breeds from rutabagas. If the dog hurts someone, that means it was a pit bull. Reporters follow the same theory. Fake news.

84 thoughts on “Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 5/21/18: Comments, Clarkson, Bitter Hillary, And Weiner Dogs Amuck

  1. 4) died from a pack of Dachshunds???

    What… were there 40,000 of these things running loose?

    3)… “if you can’t beat em join em?” And a communist hammer and sickle pin?

    I could rant as nauseum about whether or not the DNC is was infiltrated by *actual* bolsheviks during the Cold War and whether or not those infiltrations have lasting effects… I can rant about the modern intellectual elite of America that is essentially a DNC brain trust was born of an hardcore socialist ideology that went underground during the Cold War… but I’m not going to, I don’t have to, the modern Left Wing push has been outright and unapologetic socialism the likes of which would make Lenin gleeful.

    But “if you can’t beat [our enemies], join [our enemies]”

    Good God.

    Dear Get-Trump-For-Any-Tenuous-Connection-to-Russia-You-Can crowd… that phrase (lucky that it has the guise of jest) actually advocates for sedition.

    • What took this comment so long to post???

      It wasn’t flagged as “in moderation” when I clicked “send” from my phone…it just disappeared from the screen and no amount of clicking “back” recovered the text. Having lost many a comment to the aether that way before I figured it was gone for good, so I recomposed it’s lesser brother below.

      This was actually my preferred comment.

  2. 3)

    “If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em?” While donning a hat with the hammer and sickle???

    I could rant ad nauseum about conspiracy theories of bolsheviks infiltrating the DNC and other American institutions during the Cold War, I could rave about how hard core socialist ideology went underground in the American Academic Elite during the Cold War and how their intellectual descendents form an essential brain trust of the American Left. But I don’t have to, the modern left has espoused unapologetically socialist policies…it’s self evident.

    But, “If you can’t beat [our enemies], join [our enemies]”

    Dear Get-Trump-For-Anything-Even-the-most-Tenuous-of-connections-and-associations-and-damn-the-lasting-consequences Crowd…Hillary’s comment (and luckily it’s notionally under the guise of jest) is an actual example of inciting people to sedition.

    Good God.


  3. 4) I don’t think it’s clear that they were just Dachshunds either. It seems they were some sort of mixed breed that did have some Dachshund influence, but other reports show they were noticeably larger than your typical Dachshund pure-breed.

    Other reports have them listed as “Dachshund – Terrier” mixes, none more than 40 pounds.

    • For what it is worth, I think I heard one of the dogs was a border collie (dachshund?) mix, while the others were just dachshunds.

      As for Chris, he probably deserved a suspension or, at least a cooling off period.

      I don’t take him to be the troll some do. He’s a “true believer,” as far as I can tell. it’s always good to have some of them around to give you perspective.


        • He probably won’t, at least for a while. Frankly butting heads with several people who you despise and who despise you and aren’t buying what you’re selling isn’t fun, and all it gets you is being angry. Keep writing angry posts and all it will get you is angry. Who needs it?

      • I concur with you re: Chris.

        I’ve seen several semi-conflicting reports regarding the composition of the pack of dogs…

        Regarding the dogs, I find it difficult to believe that a pack of 7 Dachshunds brought down a grown woman… 7,000 maybe.

        • Regarding Chris being a “true believer.” Great point. Chris is the poster boy for the young generation of leftists. He’s bought the entire package. Just look at one of his professors, the nasty writing professor from Fresno State or wherever. Chris truly believes he is right and anyone who doesn’t believe everything he believes to be the case is an absolute fool. He has never, ever considered the possibility he might just possibly be wrong or that any of his ideas might be terrible or destructive. Nor is he at all skeptical about the world view he’s been handed by the current day lefty academy. His contempt for non-believers oozes out of every word he writes. His first response to any comment that doesn’t fit his world view is invariably, “You’re wrong. And you’re an idiot.” For example, and not by way of limitation, Chris is absolutely confident the earth is warming and it’s caused by human generated CO2, diversity is wonderful, income inequality is dangerous and can be fixed, systemic racism exists and is harmful, Republicans are the vilest of the vile, people only become wealthy by taking money away from other people in a zero sum game, any unequal outcomes need to be remedied, nations are vile constructs oppressing the poor, intersectionality explains everything and if you’re older than he is, you’re irrelevant. It’s a lot to be angry about and boy is he angry. There are a lot of people like Chris. They are mostly young but there are a lot of old hippies around as well who are still pissed off. But you can’t talk to Chris. If you’re not on the same page as he is, he’s simply not buying it. And he’s unable to hide that dismissive arrogance. It’s why I no longer engage with him. Resistance is futile. And there’s a very good chance that in thirty years or so, Chris and his ilk with be a comfortable majority of the citizenry. They’ll kill the goose that has been laying the golden eggs. Which frankly, will be my grand children’s problem. I’ll be dead. And by the way, Chris is teaching young students. Think about that.

          Regarding daschunds, my wife and I just a few weeks ago euthanized our by then terribly feeble sixteen year old mini daschund. She was the fifth one we’ve had. I also had a standard male daschund as a kid growing up. Great dog. Fritz would play with us neighborhood kids as if he was a greased pig we all tried to catch. Currently, we are taking a respite after forty years of having family dogs (started with an Airedale). I do not doubt that standard daschunds could easily knock down and overwhelm an older woman. We always had females. The males can be nasty. Our sweetest smallest one was a vicious ankle biter. She was very protective of us. She once attacked a garbage truck she thought was threatening us, but fortunately, didn’t get too close, fortunately. But daschunds were originally bred to go into holes and flush badgers. They are tremendously efficient ratters. So people can laugh at weiner dogs but you do need to be aware of the fact daschund means badger dog.

          • My experience regarding Dachshunds may very well only be the “mini” version, because all the ones I’ve ever known via friends who’ve owned them were maybe 15″ long…

            So I’ll bow to your experience.

            • A pack of standards could definitely get a late middle-aged adult woman disoriented and panicked and off balance and onto the ground. If they were feral and flea bitten and starved, who knows what they would do after that. A single mini? Pretty unlikely. AKC evidently says minis are only up to 10 pounds, although I’ve heard up to 12 pounds. Standards can be as large as 32 pounds. And muscular if they’re not over fed.

          • ”any unequal outcomes need to be remedied,”

            Unless they hamstring EVIL Whites, who are eminently deserving because of the perceived sins of a time past.

            “nations are vile constructs oppressing the poor”

            Unless they’re flying the Mexican or Palestinian flag.

            “the fact dashchund means badger dog.”

            Oy; America’s Dairyland is the Dashchund State? I’ll leave you to break that to ZoltarSpeaks!

            • Hah! Badger State, not the badger dog state (which would be cute and loyal and snuggley). And don’t you agree, badgers are a very, very nasty animal? I can’t imagine what they’re like when their cornered in their system of tunnels. Eesch!

              • And that badger in the letter sweater (or cheerleader sweater) certainly looks like a pretty cocky little son of a bitch, non?

              • ”And don’t you agree, badgers are a very, very nasty animal?”

                Yes they are; IMHO they clock in at # 2 on the Animal World’s pound-for-pound tough@$$ sumbitch scale; nothing will out tough a wolverine!

                “that badger in the letter sweater (or cheerleader sweater) certainly looks like a pretty cocky little son of a bitch”

                Yes he is! Our certified (certifiable?) RED ROOM is silly with ’em.

                • Yes, I thought of the mascot across the lake as a very nasty critter as well. Right up there with a Tasmanian devil, at least the Warner Bros. variety. The upper Midwest seems to be filled with all sort of mean fauna. And not just the hominids.

                  • “The upper Midwest seems to be filled with all sort of mean fauna.”

                    In the interests of balance, I submit the MN Golden Ground Squirrels, and two of the sorriest mascots of ’em all (if that group does NOT include UCSC’s Sammy the (Banana) Slug & the Stanford ”Tree”): NE’s Herbie Husker & Purdue Pete.

          • I don’t mean “true believer” in a bad way. It’s a good thing, but it can produce bias. I guess the antithesis would be a poser. Obama was a true believer, as was FDR and Wilson. Clinton and LBJ? I don’t think so. They were politicians. They made political moves. They were pragmatists. True Believers are not bad, necessarily; you can trust their motives, though. But, if you know their mindset, you know them. No ulterior motives. I think Scalia and Ginsburg both fit the bill.

            • ooooh, I don’t think FDR was a true believer. This was the anniversary of his Four Freedoms speech. About a year later, he was locking up Japanese Americans in concentration camps. FDR was a pragmatic, ruthless, technocrat who played progressive well.

            • I’m not sure where Obama falls on that scale. I guess he’s had such a brief career and now it’s over. Is there enough evidence to make a determination? Besides which, he really kind of mailed it in for most of his administration.

          • “He has never, ever considered the possibility he might just possibly be wrong or that any of his ideas might be terrible or destructive.”

            In my experience, he shows more humility and respect than many of the regulars complaining about him. He can certainly be pedantic and miss the point, but if you know how to engage in collaborative truth-seeking (a skill most people don’t believe actually exists), then it’s easy to address his concerns and have him acknowledge yours.

            What I see is some sort of allergic reaction where every time he says something that doesn’t immediately make sense, people make him out to be some sort of avatar of madness. Caricaturing people you don’t understand is a bad habit that most humans develop. I went through a phase like that myself, but I made enough of a nuisance of myself that people forced me to grow out of it. If I still acted like that, I’d be pouncing on people Left and Right (hah) for expressing their beliefs in things I find nonsensical, and it would be very unpleasant and pointless all around.

            As it stands, I employ more constructive ways to change people’s minds. I realize that following my example takes skill that not everyone currently has the will or maturity to develop, but those who don’t want to learn to understand other people should at least avoid expressing their skewed impressions of them as facts.

            • “What I see is some sort of allergic reaction where every time he says something that doesn’t immediately make sense, people make him out to be some sort of avatar of madness.”

              You said it better than I could find the words for.

              • The problem with characterizing anyone’s (Chris’s and those who argue with Chris) *method* of argumentation or their persistence/quantity of argumentation is that it can easily apply to your own arguments and the only difference is perspective.

                When one person says “people make him out to be an avatar of madness” one can easily also say “he makes out others to be avatars of madness”. The essential nature of “arguments” is that you think the other person is wrong and you set out to show them why you think they are wrong. Change out a few of the words in that sentence with synonym and you get “make them out to be mad”.

                We don’t engage in arguments to bolster someone else’s opinions we believe flawed.

                • “The essential nature of “arguments” is that you think the other person is wrong and you set out to show them why you think they are wrong.”

                  Yoda voice: That… is why you fail.

                  I recommend that you (and everyone else) read Difficult Conversations. It will equip you with the right paradigms to deal with any disagreement you’re ever likely to run into. If you’re looking for something you’ve already heard of, you can check out The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. Habit 5 is “seek first to understand, then to be understood.”

                  The essential nature of arguments is that two people have different understandings of reality and they’re trying to find out what reality is actually like, because at least one of them must be missing something. If you’re focusing on convincing the other person they’re wrong, you will not be able to notice any ways in which you might be wrong, and if they’re trying to do the same thing, you’ll never get anywhere.

                  Collaborative truth-seeking is based on the idea that if you both understand more than you did before, you both win. It doesn’t matter in the slightest who was more correct to begin with.

                  So few people in human history, relatively speaking, even know it’s possible to do it, let alone how to consider another person’s position, let alone how to engage with them so that they trust you are considering their position that that they will consider yours. That goes a long way towards explaining why the world looks the way it does today. Just as with all the other fundamental risks, humans are great at allowing conflict to fester where it really doesn’t need to.

                  • “The essential nature of arguments is that two people have different understandings of reality and they’re trying to find out what reality is actually like”

                    Lovely poetic rewording of my original assertion.

                    “Collaborative truth-seeking is based on the idea that if you both understand more than you did before, you both win. It doesn’t matter in the slightest who was more correct to begin with.”

                    And yet, someone is corrected when someone was wrong.

                    I really fail to see how any of this undermines my commentary.

                    I get you are trying to make it softer and gentler and I get that my comment is more clinical and direct. But still, in an argument, at least one person is wrong, and the idea of the argument is to correct error.

                    • Note that EC’s approach has had little impact, in my experience, when arguing with progressives… they don’t agree to enough facts and reality to find common ground, and if the facts are indisputable, then they don’t matter: the progressive is still right. Sez so right here. These days, you are evil just for disputing their ever changing narrative.

                      I have used his approach with non progressives effectively, like in a professional situation, or at home with family.

                      Further note: both side can be wrong to varying degrees, and you have to be open to being wrong, at least in part.

                      I thought I was wrong once, but I was mistaken. 🙂

                    • I think his wording is useful as a reminder, like you note, that in all arguments you can’t assume you are absolutely infallible even when you energetically support your own position.

                    • Well, to implement it effectively takes finesse. It’s not just about having the right goals, but also having the method to get someone else to buy into those goals as well. If you want someone to take you seriously, you have to demonstrate to them that you take them seriously and understand their point of view, and still aren’t convinced. It’s less about brutal honesty and more about what I call assassination honesty. Ender’s Game is another book that might help with the idea.

                    • “If you want someone to take you seriously, you have to demonstrate to them that you take them seriously and understand their point of view”

                      I agree. But then I also have to triage discussion topics.

                      Let’s look at a continuum, on one end, you have completely specious arguments and conclusions, like “the holocaust didn’t happen”, on the other end, you have wrong arguments and conclusions, but they aren’t specious as you can generally see how an individual may have reached those conclusions, like “General Lee could have won the Civil War if he’d won at Gettysburg”.

                      Somewhere in between you have arguments that are more specious but you can still see how someone gets to their conclusions like “Socialism works”.

                      Now, somewhere on that continuum, there is a line, a line that says “I don’t have the time to regard your opinions seriously and give you benefit of the doubt, so I’m not going to” on one side and all the patience and respect and candor you prescribe on the other side.

                      I agree with your methods of patience, respect and dialogue, but I don’t necessarily know if it’s a universal obligation for all discussion topics.

                      Unfortunately, the entire Trump-derangement-derived get-Trump-at-all-costs arguments are rapidly approaching that line on the continuum.

                    • Ender’s Game, and some of the follow on books that did NOT have The Wiggin are great at this sort of lesson.

                      Peter became the leader through diplomacy not force.

      • Crossing dachshunds with larger dogs is a recipe for disaster. Too much risk of having the merciless, bloodthirsty, killer instincts of a dachshund in a body capable of bringing your throat down to their level.

      • [follow-up to JutGory’s May 21 at 2:07 pm]
        I knew it. I KNEW it. The moment I read Jack’s #1 bloglet (blogment?*) of today, catching up and jumping back into reading the blog after many days away (involuntarily), I knew Jack was talking about his suspension of leftist commenter and self-identified teacher Chris. JutGory’s comment was the first I read that mentioned Chris by name. Well, despite my near-constant disagreement with Chris and my frequent annoyance by his tone of argumentation, I nevertheless hope to see him commenting again, as a…not sadder-but-wiser, but rather happier-and-wiser man.

        *There, I was trying to make a portmanteau out of “blog fragment,” I guess. I was brainstorming-as-I-typed, trying to nail the best noun for Jack’s numbered portions of his “warm-up” posts. If that noun has already been nailed, I need to learn it, and apologize for not knowing it already.

  4. Have you ever wondered why the gun controllers can’t seem to make coherent arguments about what controls they are for, and why? Have you ever wondered why all the celebrities like Clarkson seem to do is weep and demand we do something without a shred of specificity?

    I have, and I believe I have an answer.

    They don’t want to know enough about gun control to be specific. They have seen what happens when they try to bring specific proposals to the table; they wind up getting exposed as know-nothings about a simple mechanical device and the legal management already in place. It makes them feel helpless and ignorant as well as angry.

    So they’ve learned just to channel the feelings and leave out all the suggestions for fixing the problem. They figure, apparently, that if they can get enough people upset by vomiting emotion all over them, something will happen, and as we all know, doing anything at all is good, even if it’s wrong, when it comes to something as “evil” as guns.

    Also, this emotional effluvia has another benefit – it enables those who favor gun control to ignore the fact that firearm ownership is a constitutionally protected individual right. After all, if you’re upset enough about something, rights can be ignored because – you know – the horror!

    Even if placing trained, uniformed officers in every school would render school shootings obsolete (and I know that wouldn’t happen, but just hang with me here), they would not be happy unless there were more gun control. That’s because they are essentially hammers searching for nails to bang on. Solving school shootings will only work for them under a very specific set of conditions. If we find a solution that does not involve gun control, the demands for more gun control will only increase, not decrease.

    They offer no solutions because they only care about one thing – banning all guns to all civilians. Anything short of that is unacceptable, because after all, if a guy can take a 12-gage shotty and a wheel gun and kill just a few less people than a guy with a semiautomatic “assault” rifle and multiple 10+ round magazines, no guns can be safe for civilians as far as they are concerned. I can’t wait for the Left and media to start putting “assault” in front of every firearm type – “That guy had an assault .410, I swear!”

    No more gaslighting. Maybe that’s a good thing.

    • I think it’s actually simpler than that. I believe a large percentage of the population operates and reacts on an emotional level without considering thoughtful reason. Try a reasonable discussion about issues with people (on both sides) and often all you’ll get are either knee-jerk reactions or blank stares.

      • I agree that’s part of it, perhaps even the major part. But I think it’s significant that so many people on this side of the argument have absolutely no interest in firearms, and refuse to learn anything about a device that they purport to fear.

        It’s also interesting how they change their tune once they get taken to the range by an expert and shown how to use the tools they wish to ban. Steven Crowder did that to several young millennial girls, and the change in their attitude toward guns, even AR-15’s, was striking.

        Ignorance makes hating something easy. Knowledge and understanding makes it almost impossible. So to maintain their hatred of guns, they must needs be as ignorant as possible about them.

    • This is spot on, Glenn. Cherry picking hysterics on Facebook, I pointed out to one that her ranting about “assault rifles” were completely irrelevant to this shooting. Here response? “Whatever.”

    • What’s interesting is watching them try to turn a bug into a feature. Not only do they attempt to cover for their lack of sufficient knowledge with appeals to emotion, gun control advocates often attempt to judo-flip the argument so that wanting precise definitions based on facts is somehow proof positive of bad intent.

    • I find the emotional focus on the tool used to be really interesting. That this “evil object” is the problem, and should be eradicated, seems to miss quite a few obvious issues.
      The production of firearms is very old technology, and not very hard. I could produce a workable weapon in my garage within a couple of days, with basic tools and a $100 in parts. I’m no machinist, and those who are could do infinitely better than me. I understand that 3D printers can produce firearms at this point (or will soon be able to), and they will only become more sophisticated.
      Those who want a weapon will always have the ability to obtain one, short of an absolute police state.

      • “short of an absolute police state.”

        Key observation.

        Thing is, the Left has two arguments:

        1) The true believers want full confiscation, repeal of the 2nd amendment and complete disarmament and dis-empowerment of the citizenry so we be like their soft-dictatorship idols in Europe.

        But they know that there is no logical argument that will sell with enough Americans to bring this about.

        So the fall back argument must be:

        2) Emotionalize the argument. Make people physiologically sick when they think of guns. Give them gut disgust towards the objects so that they don’t have to think about the myriad and nuanced issues and principles that are involved in the discussion.

        Boil it down to, “Me no like bang bang, so you no can has bang bang” and then you can win arguments all day long because the pro-liberty side of this discussion will never get an audience like that to a point of discussing facts and principles.

        • It’s such an infantile perspective on reality that I have a hard time accepting that functioning adults can hold such opinions. It’s like a 3 year old at the dinner table who hates broccoli, isn’t required to eat it, but is throwing a tantrum to have it removed, destroyed and then no broccoli ever again, anywhere, ’cause they hate it, hate it, hate it! All id, all the time. Except 3 year olds don’t have pundits writing long, nonsensical articles about “The Broccoli Crisis- is it time for a solution?”, and expecting to be taken seriously. It exists, it isn’t going away.
          Note: If anyone tells me “broccoli doesn’t kill people”, I’ll have them thrown into a Home for the Deliberately Obtuse and Pedantic.

          • Assuming the left ever managed to get a Constitutional Amendment passed overturning the Second, (good luck with that, when I explain the process they look at me like I just made it up, and if only they had a President like Obama, he’d fix it right away!), I expect the implementation of the ban and confiscation to be about as effective as prohibition, only much more violent. Both booze and guns are in demand, and easily manufactured, so well always have plenty of both.

            • When I have a discussion with similar people on why we can’t just ram rod legislation to get what we want (especially legislation that touches on constitutionally protected liberties) I almost have to start at square one and explain social contract, rule of law, separation of powers, and why we don’t want a government to be able to ram changes through even if they are changes we think we want.

              It almost seems like ignorance of our system (and the values it protects) is a desired trait for those who want to make massive social changes.

              • Hmmm. I don’t disagree with you actually. This is the discussion that I have with ardent pro-lifers. How would this be enforced? Because doctors will find a way to help desperate women. Will husbands (or another male relative if the woman is underage or unmarried) be required to accompany all doctor appointments? Will the police have to attend? What are the penalties to the woman who has had an illegal abortion? Do those penalties change if she is already raising children? What are the penalties to the doctor? What about fetuses with significant health issues? Can those be aborted? If not, will the State pay for its care through adulthood? What about cases where the health of the mother is in doubt? Heck, what about Zika, which has already made its way to the US? Tests are inconclusive during pregnancy — do these women have to give birth and just hope their babies don’t have shrunken heads? I hate abortion too — but I am unwilling to have a discussion about banning it because, even though I can rock a red dress, I’d rather not live in the Handmaiden universe.

                • Good point. It doesn’t seem to me bad guys in European countries seem to have much of a hard time getting guns if they want to, gun bans notwithstanding.

                  • You’re missing the point. I’m not talking about the right and whether or not it is analogous. I’m talking about enforcement. Explain to me a world where we can outlaw abortion without the government monitoring my uterus until menopause.

                    • Ah … okay. That is where I thought you were going with, “But they know that there is no logical argument that will sell with enough Americans to bring this about.”

                      Because logically, we would need the police to go knock on doors for a certain percentage (and I assume that it would be a healthy percentage) of those who would not voluntarily turn in their guns. The logistics and safety concerns around that are mind boggling to me — even though I am against arms ownership but for hunting.

                    • And that is a valid analogy with abortion rights and gun control. In both cases, enforcement of a ban would be impossible, and a ban that can’t be enforced is just posturing. On the other hand, there is value in society saying “this is wrong” whether you have a right to do it or not. Owning guns, however, is NOT wrong. And there the analogy ends.

                      The comparison is between aborting innocents and shooting them.

                    • Get your abortions, just don’t ask me to sanction them or pay for them. Today you force me to do both, and it is a stain upon my soul.

                      Law sanctions them (until we can get that reversed)
                      Taxpayer money pays for them (and no BS about ‘oh, that money does not support abortions…’ which has been debunked here at EA)

                    • Again, law has to sanction them — otherwise the State would be monitoring my womb for the next 10 years or so.

                      I grew up in a Libertarian family. Although I am to the left of them, I still remember my dad’s (deceased) views on abortion: Abortion is abhorrent and a sin, but it is between you and your God if you ever decide to have one. Period.

                      I think that can be the only answer truthfully. If you think it is a sin, then fine, you are entitled to that belief. And I won’t even quibble with you about it, because my own beliefs on the issue are very complicated. But we have to take the abortion issue out of politics and the legal system entirely.

                    • “Again, law has to sanction them — otherwise the State would be monitoring my womb for the next 10 years or so.”

                      No, it doesn’t have to sanction them and no the state doesn’t have to monitor your womb either. This is such a false dichotomy.

                      And slick is right (esp if you like your dad’s take on this): using tax dollars to prop up the killing of unborn babies involves more than just the abhorrent mother and God.

                    • I love your thoughts on this topic, even though they don’t hold together very well. They perfectly reflect the complexity of the issue once one is honest and objective. That said,

                      1. God is a cop-out, and you know it. This is just another version of ethical relativism, and “you have your truth and I have mine.”
                      2. The conduct involves human life. Of course the legal system has to be involved. Will you have the same position when Peter Singer’s position take root, and we have advocates for killing new borns? After all, they aren’t sentient, and it’s between you and your God…

                      Hey, killing’s a sin to my God, if your is jake with it, fine, Dude! Free country, right?

                    • I don’t believe in God, but this is not a cop out in any event. My dad thought it was murder, and I’m more in the camp of viewing it as justifiable homicide. The reason that my dad did not want the State involved is that he, like me, understood just how much personal liberty, security, and privacy would have to be sacrificed to live in a society where abortion is outlawed AND it is enforced. He was a Libertarian purist (for lack of a better description) — Libertarians today have moved further to the right on this issue but have taken contradictory interpretations of appropriate State involvement on others — foreign affairs and drugs leap to mind.

                      I keep waiting for someone to explain to me how outlawing abortion would work in the US. No one can. That is why I liken it to the gun debate. I hate guns too (like most lefties), but where I part ways with them is that I can’t imagine how it could be enforced without the police, ATF, or whoever going door-to-door and searching for them. And, not just once, but many times as people will find ways to build their own guns and manufacture their own ammunition.

  5. Hillary Clinton. What a smug jerk. Did she get that hat as part of the Uranium One deal? I doubt she paid for it. The Clintons don’t pay for anything.

  6. Your blog – your rules. No problem. What I cannot understand is how someone that voluntarily enters a discussion, perhaps using a psuedonym for a screen name, can even consider claiming defamation by a blogger.

    Admittedly, I use my full name and I do so to demonstrate that I am willing to put my name on the line when I express an opinion. Nonetheless, I understand that others may challenge my opinions and ridicule the ideas I willingly offer for public consumption. They may call me an idiot. They may unequivocally state I am a nutjob or worse. That is the price of admission. If I am unwilling to risk my comeuppance from Jack or any other commenter then I should not participate. If you hurl hand grenades expect them to be thrown back.

    Seems to me that defamation can only exist if one can prove harm has been proven to have occurred independent of the complainant making the utterances public. I guess my point is there are at least 5 Chris Marschners located around the world. How in the hell could anyone make the claim of defamation absent a photograph of the person in question.

    • I’m not a lawyer, but if I’ve learned one thing from my time reading legal blogs it’s “Shut up and ask for a lawyer.” If I’ve learned a SECOND thing, though, it’s that it’s relatively easy to file a suit, even one that appears blatantly groundless, but even those are costly and time-consuming to defend against. The aim of such a suit may not even be victory, but simply a drain on the time and resources and sanity of the target.

      The mileage of any specific case may vary, of course.

      • Never talk to the police.

        I make exceptions for those who know me, but even then I ask the questions to determine their intent, should something smell off. Remember, they can lie to you.

    • I use my full name…

      Ever heard of doxxing? In today’s social climate, doxxing could cost you your job, or worse.

      Not to cause fear, CM, but a moderately competent private investigator can find you, given you real name and access to your content in a blog. Times you posted, hints dropped in idle conversation, and so forth are what I was trained to use against America’s enemies (for the purpose of killing them) and the data has become much richer since I left the Air Force in the early 2000s.

      The Feds do not even need to look at your content: they already know who you are no matter what your screen name, but that is unavoidable at this point.

      (Note: this message may contain one or more misleading data points that confuse an identity search by one less connected than the Feds, as do many of my posts. My heat map is truly smeared, and they only get content from THIS blog and no other: Jack is the only host I trust)

  7. Boston, you say?

    Jack… if you’d like, would you like to finally meet in person, and give that trip more than one purpose?

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