Civil Unrest

It’s getting friskier in the ‘burbs than at any point in my living memory. I lived somewhere else during the Rodney King riots, but I don’t remember any of that coming out of the city. Here, we had a looting attempt at Neshaminy Mall and an active issue at Franklin Mills Mall. A pizza place around the corner from me had an incident. We were wondering what all the sirens were about.

To quote my grandfather: “This country is going to hell in a hand basket.” At this point, if I didn’t have to maintain a Facebook presence for my club, I would quit social media, which I think is stirring this toxic brew. I keep going back to “One Screen, Two Movies,” because it’s becoming more and more apparent as time goes on.

Remember back when we all wanted to take down the mainstream media? Mission accomplished! And now we’re getting it good and hard by what is replacing it.

101 thoughts on “Civil Unrest”

    1. Most of the disinformation on social media is from MSM sources. Just the latest in the jihad to take down the Bad Orange Man.

        1. Seems like a distinction without a difference. I was using the normal definition. Who knows who pays attention to what these days.

        2. The belief that the media, especially the mainstream media, was ever, ever, ever a source of impartiality is probably in the Top 5 List of delusions that boomers cling to the hardest.

          The mainstream press was only ever mainstream insofar as it was the only organ from which the cultural biases and orders of the elite are emitted, and to that end, has only ever favored left wing policies at home and war abroad.

          1. “The belief that the media, especially the mainstream media, was ever, ever, ever a source of impartiality is probably in the Top 5 List of delusions that boomers cling to the hardest.”

            Speaking for Boomers (though I’m technically a few weeks too old to qualify) I think that survives from when the media was relatively reliable (WWII?), examples like the Chicago Tribune’s “Dewey Wins!” headline notwithstanding.

            But, my generation should have learned from the Vietnam Era, when almost all of our lives were changed in some way by the media going along with both Republican (Eisenhower) and Democrat (Kennedy/Johnson) Administrations’ utter bullshit about Southeast Asia.
            Anecdote regarding “media bias”: As mentioned before I was once a True Believer in the Libertarian Party. I think it was 1992 when the Libertarian POTUS candidate won the local election in Dixville Notch, NH. On one of the Philadelphia network affiliate news shows, their news anchor (Larry Kane?) would not speak his name. He said approximately “Bill Clinton got ‘X’ votes, George Bush got ‘Y’ votes, Ross Perot got ‘Z’ votes, but somebody else won the election.”

            All that said: You need to beware the “Fake News” concept giving license to believe just anything, because as a tactic it works both ways.

      1. Trump is trying to recreate the tiananmen square incident, and people are still trying play it off as herp derp orange man bad.

        1. “Trump is trying to recreate the tiananmen square incident”

          I agree, and I’m wondering who stands to gain from that?

        2. You’re wrong, and you should feel bad for writing something so idiotic.

          If anyone’s trying to recreate Tienanmen Square, it’s the DNC and their cadre of violence prone ground-level foot soldiers in Antifa and BLM who’ve been given free reign to burn down anything they see fit, and the only time they encountered anything like a true show of force was when they were attempting to breach the perimeter of the White House.

          1. You’d think a freedom loving conservative would be inclined to side with the folks who are protesting against out of control agents of the state, but you’ve chosen to side with the state. If it weren’t for double standards then you’d have no standards at all!

            1. That’s a false dichotomy.

              In short, you’re equating civil & non-violent protests with riots.

            2. It’s faintly adorable how leftists continue to think that their gaslighting tactic is still an effective tool.

  1. In the days of yore, before we were able to speak back to our screens, there was no “Two Movies, One Screen.” There was one screen, one movie, and if you objected, you were alone and probably insane.

    I’ll take this.

    1. I never really liked the movie. But that was also indication I was a bit odd. Now the oddballs can find each other, and feed their delusions.

      1. “Now the oddballs can find each other”

        It used to take real work for us oddballs to get together. :-)

        I learned of the existence of the Libertarian Party the week after the 1980 election, when someone brought a Clark brochure into the office. Despite it taking me less than a year to become disillusioned with Reagan (who I had voted for with enthusiasm) it took me a couple years to actually get together with the LP. I would call the number, get an answering machine, leave a message, and nothing.

        1. I can’t possibly think of a better metaphor for libertarianism than your experience with trying to get in touch with them.

      2. It’s true that oddballs can feed their delusions. But now it’s considerably easier to see the delusions in the Main Movie as well.

        And while this has changed somewhat with the internet, it’s still the case that the people who like the second movie have a tendency to be somewhat familiar with what’s in the first movie as well — there’s still so much of the first movie around us, it’s kindof hard not to absorb at least some of it — yet it’s also still the case that the watchers of the first movie are oblivious to the second one.

        1. “…it’s still the case that the people who like the second movie have a tendency to be somewhat familiar with what’s in the first movie as well — there’s still so much of the first movie around us, it’s kindof hard not to absorb at least some of it — yet it’s also still the case that the watchers of the first movie are oblivious to the second one.”

          This. This is the problem.

          We hear their arguments, and understand them, yet we still disagree.

          They hear strawman versions of our disagreements, build those strawmen into giant windmills, and then tilt at those windmills as if they were dragons.

  2. A large part of this is a 2 month lockdown and paying people more to not work, and progressive mayors holding back their cops.

    Throw in a system that protects bad cops and education that promotes the idea that everybody is racist and American is terrible, and you’ve got a very potent mix.

    Notice this is all happening in Dem controlled cities.

    1. Also, this has zero to do with replacing the mainstream media. That was a necessity, because they were skewing the news. Social media is so much better, because the information can get out there. If we didn’t replace the mainstream media, gun rights would be dead. So be very thankful we’ve replaced it.

      1. “If we didn’t replace the mainstream media, gun rights would be dead.”

        Here’s another take. Social media delivered Donald Trump for you, and after Trump fucks everything up, that will deliver almost complete control to the enemies of gun rights. So it will be social media that cost us our rights. But we’ll at least still have it to whine to each other.

        1. OR a much better take:

          Social media delivered nothing in the election except letting information free. What brought Trump was the wussy GOP before hand.

          And even more so, it doesn’t matter WHO was elected from the GOP. The enemies of gun rights will gain complete control, because everything is cyclical.

          So ya, you are wrong as usual.

          1. Dream on, if it’s keeping you happy. You may have set the record for the most delusions in a single comment.

            1. “Deliver complete control to enemies of gun rights”. Dream on… Gun control is dying a slow death. We are witnessing a “dry run” right now should any anti-gunner have delusions of grandeur. They may feel they are delivered a victory, but there’s no mandate.

              1. “Gun control is dying a slow death.”

                People have been killed when dead deer came to life and gored them.

                1. That’s a decent analogy. So we maintain vigilance. Did I ever let on that we should not? I have also not seen an answer in any of your posts regarding what you hope to accomplish for gun rights other than serving as a namesake for the existence of the Liberal Gun Club… How do you personally measure your impact on gun rights when you vote?

                  1. Me? I’m the one in the Liberal Gun Club?

                    Most of you jackasses went down on an idiot who is a “right-wing populist”, at best, because he talked hairy-chested shit. Today the NRA is in shambles and there appears to be a real good chance the Democrats will take the whole ball game in November. That sure sounds like it was a winning strategy to me. Even if you want to blame the MSM, you should have known your man would be giving them plenty to work with. They haven’t had to do much except report every time he’s opened his mouth and give him plenty of air time. You underestimated your opponents and overestimated your hero. The most basic strategy for losing a war. Let me know if your tactical geniuses have any more great strategies in mind, so I’ll know when to run.

                    1. I don’t think the NRA is in shambles because of what Trump has been doing, though. It’s pretty clear that the NRA, in an effort to prevent another Cincinnati-style revolt, made their organization so rigid, that it became difficult to clear out rot. The rot has been building up for years.

                    2. “I don’t think the NRA is in shambles because of what Trump has been doing”

                      I think that when Trump got elected, every “conservative” con man/woman in the country, with any common sense at all, saw an opportunity that would not last forever and started grabbing everything they could with both hands. Not unlike Trump and his family. Eventually that will prove to be the story behind the NRA shambles.

                    3. No, the NRA has been in the current downward spiral for over 20 years–Knox tried to oust WLP & Ack-Mac in 1997, and WLP managed to oust Knox instead.

                      If Knox had succeeded, the NRA would look very different today.

              2. “Gun control is dying a slow death.”

                Pardon me for playing the Old Fart card, but I was well into adulthood with an Army hitch under my belt before GCA ’68 came along and was endorsed by the NRA. No one much younger than I am has even an elementary idea what firearms freedom looks like.

                If gun control is dying a slow death, thanks for letting me know. I’ll be waiting by the mailbox to send off my mailorder for a 20mm Lahti anti-tank gun to Interarmco, like I could when I was 23. But I think I know who is going to be dead before gun control is dead. Me. And you. And everyone reading this. No one even aspires to get back to where we once were.

                1. Oh, I aspire. I just don’t think it’s politically feasible, and it probably never will be, too.

                  I have the distinct impression that it was easy to ban 20mm guns because they were so expensive to own and operate (with or without an extra $200 tax and a long waiting period) that almost no one had one, so the right to have one was easy to give up. While it’s clear to me that nothing will change if it became 100% tax free and legal to own one again, it’s such a niche issue, that nothing is going to cause the restoration to happen.

                  Fortunately, in practice, this isn’t going to matter much in the long run, as much as philosophically, it causes me to simmer in anger.

          1. Who was it but Trump that broached the idea of imposing martial law in Washington, DC? Are we supposed to reserve our DS for Obama or HRC who we were told were going to do it? Trump even has the ass-kissing generals jumping through their own bungholes over it. Do they have TDS?

            “In a contentious Oval Office meeting with Trump and others on Monday, the president demanded 10,000 federal troops be sent to the capital city”

            1. Definitely TDS issues. That article says nothing about martial law, just using troops to put down a riot, well under the powers of the President in the federal enclave of DC.

              Who was it but the Democratic Govenors like Wolf, Cuomo, and Witmer who imposed ACTUAL martial law, but ordering people to stay home and businesses to shut down??

              1. Where were troops involved in enforcement of pandemic shutdown regulations? Requesting 10,000 armed federal troops to enforce a chief executive’s wishes wouldn’t be martial law, but declaring regulations that were for the most part complied with voluntarily or enforced by civilian bureaucrats with folders of paper instead of rifles was martial law? Now I get it.

                If you want an article that uses the words “martial law” here is one for you.

                1. They were police, who often are as heavily armed as an infantry troops . Apparently you missed all the news.

                  Yes, requesting 10,000 armed federal troops to enforce peace isn’t martial law (because you know, they weren’t out there preventing anybody from living, just from rioting).

                  And yes, regulations by a single person (the governor) that ORDERED people to stay home and businesses shutterered that were backed up by fines and/or jail sounds A LOT like martial law to me. In fact, they arrested and sent to jail someone who was cutting hair! If that’s not martial law, I don’t know what is.

                  And your article is just how it was used in history. Which sounds A LOT more like the latter example than the former. Just saying…

  3. For What It’s Worth, my memory of the Five Points Gasoline Riot of 1978; it was much more local and was already real old news when Rodney King came along:

    I lived less than a half-mile from the site of the riot, that included the burning of at least one gas station. I did not know anything was going on until I heard it on the news the following morning, like everyone else.

    Somewhat more absurd, I was a runner at the time, but did my running (armed) at night. That night I ran within 1/4 mile of the riot, and never knew anything was going on. While I was running in the park, a cop drove by and illuminated me with his searchlight, and I thought “WTF is your problem?” I was running in the remnants of my Army fatigues in those days, but I guess he thought that didn’t look threatening, because he went on his way.

    To try to make a theme out of the story: There was no social media at that time, so I knew nothing about a closeby riot until I read the newspaper the next day. I still don’t use social media, but there was another protest at Five Points this weekend and hundreds of people, including me, knew about it realtime — though it was small (~50 people) and remained peaceful.

    My heads-up came from a local woman who called on the phone to say a cop she knew had called her and warned there was going to be a “riot at Five Points” and to stay away. When I went to check it out, I saw dozens of people walking the streets, like me, trying to look nonchalant and casual while drifting over to Five Points.

    My theory is someone (possibly cops seeking overtime?) planted a local social media rumor that something BIG was going to go down. There was a cop presence that may have outnumbered the demonstrators. The newspaper reported that the actual “protest” started at ten people, who were later joined by about forty others — but all were peaceful. I have not yet seen “responsibility” for the protest claimed by any group, but I haven’t worked at investigating it. That it started so small suggests there was no “organization” and it probably grew with curiosity seekers.

    I have heard reports of other small, peaceful protests around the country. If they weren’t instigated by cops seeking overtime, and if credit can’t be claimed or assigned, I would speculate that some brand of “troublemaker” used social media to instigate them, hoping that some percentage of them would ignite into actual riots.

    Our area, with its infamy for the “Gasoline Riots” of 40 years ago, would be a logical target to instigate for anyone working from ancient history. The Gasoline Riot really did seem to be spontaneous, back in the day.

    1. Still more FWIW:

      It seems that all over the country there were small, local demonstrations, mostly peaceful, that grew out of unfounded “social media” rumors, that day.

      I’m suspicious; a centralized, coordinated effort at provocation, or an easily explainable socio-economic phenomenon, like cops looking for OT?

      1. Actually, from what I’ve seen, there’s a simpler explanation: Suburban white people looking to signal virtue.

        I live on the west end of the Philly main line, and I’m on two of the local “community” groups on facebook. Both are infested with local Karens, and the most vocal of them have been falling all over themselves in their desire to signal virtue to the BLM movement.

  4. “MSM” means “News I don’t agree with”.

    Tell me who you think is unbiased, and I’ll show you where your bias is.

    Facebook at least lets me stay in contact with friends and family. I’ve never had (and never will!) a Twitter account. It’s wretched!

    1. “MSM” means “News I don’t agree with”.

      More exactly, “Facts that don’t fit my narrative”.

      1. People on both sides of an issue tend to tune into whichever media source parrots their views. The mainstream portion of the media tends to parrot left wing views. Mainstream to me is not social media. It is traditional broadcast media.

        If we are talking about online media then yes, I would agree with a more general statement that you mention. You can find whatever cesspool media you choose to much easier via online sources.

        1. I’m curious: Do you think Fox News and other Fox affiliates are mainstream media? Yes or no, what is your analysis of them? For example, if differences from the other media exist, why and how do they exist?

          1. FNC has been around long enough to be considered MSM in my book. This was probably not the case until 2012 or so. Their management team seems to resemble that of any large media conglomerate. Are you hanging your hat on the fact that you still hang onto them as being “a tool of the far right” or some such?

            They certainly have pulled anchor talent from every other MSM source, starting with Geraldo and O’Reilly. How about Mara Liasson or Juan Williams?

            Am I not supposed to act surprised when the culture of a company resembles what management wants?

            What’s your opinion on MSNBC?

            1. Actually we appear to be on the same page! Both MSNBC and Fox are tools for powerful interests to seek more power and influence. Neither has the interests of you and me in mind, though both are great at pretending they do. Both represent competing interests of Corporate America. I was hoping you could see that, and apparently you do.

    2. I tend to think of “MSM” as “official” news sources.

      I learned a long time ago that you will never get unbiased news. For me, it’s always merely been a question of figuring out what biases a given news source has.

    3. Disagree. MSM for the longest time has been a conglomeration of large corporations that largely hold sway over the traditional news outlets; newspapers, magazines, and television.

      I don’t agree with, say, Zerohedge, an awful lot, but they clearly aren’t part of the MSM.

  5. Is anyone else getting off on the irony that while we were told BHO or HRC might implement marshal law and deploy troops against the American people, it’s the Pro-Gun Champ who is actually swearing he’s going to do it? And has, if you count that shit-show in DC.

    I’ve been hearing reports all morning of “federal troops without insignia.”

    I’m flashing back to February/March 1966, when we at Fort Belvoir were put on alert for deployment to the streets of Washington for riot control. We never were, which is a good thing, because we had no training in crowd control. We were just scared kids with M-14s, no ammo, and bayonets.

    1. It’s kindof funny, but I also find it funny that, to a certain extent, President Trump has been threatening Governors that they had better do it, or else! I’m not sure what Trump had in mind for the “or else”, though, and I’m not entirely sure he did, either.

      For someone that the Left in particular is afraid will turn into a dictator (and I’m of the opinion that you should believe The President — no matter WHO it is — will ALWAYS be tempted to become one), he’s been very wishy-washy when it’s come to actually deploying troops. I suppose you can make the case that it’s because he’s a weak-willed “leader” who won’t stand up and Do What’s Right. Or you can make the case that he’s a Federalist, and he’d rather not do what the States ought to be doing for themselves. Perhaps it’s a bit of both. Perhaps it even depends on whether or not you like Trump! ;-)

      If it were BHO or HRC in the hot seat, would either of them had shown the same kind of constraint that Trump has? Would they have called for the National Guard to be deployed? Or would they have gone all-out 100% martial law, across all the country, and not just in the hot spots? Or would they have done exactly what Trump had doneL I don’t know, and although politically I’m glad neither are in power at this time, the only way we could be certain would be to rewind time back to 2015, put HRC in charge, and then fast forward back to now….

      1. “If it were BHO or HRC in the hot seat, would either of them had shown the same kind of constraint that Trump has?”

        I’m not sure that Trump has “shown constraint” so much as “been constrained”. Even autocrats need the other kids to come out when they want to play. Trump is learning that he may be flirting with a military mutiny, in spite of the war criminals he’s pardoned. I’m also sure BHO or HRC would have done the same thing, only with a little more finesse. I mean, they would have ginned up an entirely plausible excuse and had more plausible propaganda for calling out troops.

        1. There’s certainly a bit of truth that Trump has others restraining him. The entire system is called “Checks and Balances” for a reason — however, BHO ran into similar issues when he was President.

          And I’m fully confident that to Democrats, anything that HRC or BHO would have done would have been considered “with more finesse” by most Democrats, even if manage to get that tape back from the other timeline, and discover that there’s exactly zero difference between what Hillary did, and what Trump did. But in that timeline, I’m pretty sure Republicans would have been saying “If only Trump were President. I bet he’d be handling the situation with more finesse!” too.

          Whether it’s finesse or incompetence, the very fact that President Trump didn’t call out the Troops immediately (although in his usual bluster, he’s been trying to get Governors to do it for him, along with threats that if they don’t do it, he will) indicates to me that, whatever his motivations may be, they probably don’t include “Declare martial law and take the country by force”.

          We still shouldn’t trust Trump, though. He is President, after all.

      2. The thing to keep in mind is how much of what we’re currently seeing is rooted in media pot-stirring.

        In particular, look at the whole CV19 situation: If HRC was living at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, instead of DJT, it absolutely would have been handled differently.

        First, the media would have done their best to downplay it, like they downplayed the H1N1 pandemic in 2009–The pandemic that infected over 60,000,000 Americans, and killed more than 12,000. The one where we didn’t have the sort of broad restrictions we’ve seen over the last 3+ months.

        Second, if it had ever become clear that more serious actions needed to be taken, HRC absolutely would have turned it into a massive federal boondoggle. I have no doubt that she would have approved using federal forces to compel states to adopt the sort of policies that only some of them adopted.

  6. Federal troops have been used many times for domestic disorder. I am defining federal troops as regulars or federalized national guard/militia. So Watts and Kent State don’t count becaause the guard was under state command. A little research and some memory comes up with the following Presidents who did so. Washington (Whiskey Rebellion), Grant (Reconstruction), Hoover (Bonus March), Eisenhower (Little Rock), JFK (Alabama and threatened in Mississippi), LBJ (many times), Nixon (anti-war demonstrations in DC), and Bush I (CA). Nixon and Hoover and some of the time (LBJ) deployed troops in DC where there was no state involved. Eisenhower, JFK and LBJ (some of the time) overrode state authorities to do so. Grant may not have overridden local authorities but they weren’t really independent at that time. Truman actually used troops for strike-breaking (Mining coal with bayonets). And Lincoln exceeded all this by multiple orders of magnitude. But suddenly, it is unconstitutional because Orange Man Bad.

    1. First I need to comment, that’s one proud heritage you’ve listed there.

      But the use of federal troops has never been “unconstitutional”, and some federal legislation purporting to limit such use had been in response to abuses perpetrated in the examples you’ve cited.

      I’d have to go through your examples one-by-one to list those that were probably or certainly in violation of federal law at the time. But realistically neither federal law nor the constitution itself mean a damn thing if what is being done is politically popular.
      Emotionally: My European ancestors could remember mounted Cossacks riding into crowds and riding people down, and living cousins stood in crowds and pressed bare palms against Soviet tanks, when the USSR collapsed. I know whose side I’m on, no matter who is yanking the Cossacks’ strings; cars in St. Petersburg or czars in Washington.

      1. Well, the Eisenhower and Kennedy ones were definitely a good thing. Detroit, LA were requested by the states. All the DC cases were in a Federal enclave and were riotous demonstrations against the Federal government so the use of Federal resources seems appropriate. I would have to rate Reconstruction and Whiskey rebellion as mixed. There were definitely abuses in Reconstruction. Posse Comitatus Act was passed as a result of Reconstruction heavily supported by Democrats in Southern states who wanted to get on with Jim Crow. Probably also part of the deal to decide the 1876 election in favor of the Republicans. Whiskey Rebellion could be seen as an effort to safeguard a substantial part of Federal revenue or as suppression of back country deplorables. I once visited a historical museum about moonshine where I learned that because of transportation issues before railroads and canals that whiskey was the only reasonable way to deal with corn surplus produced in the backcountry. I would rate Truman’s exercise as negative. And worst of all was Lincoln’s. While the South fought to preserve slavery, Lincoln didn’t start the war to abolish it. The Emancipation Proclamation was a tactical measure during the war. (Later, he did seem to develop a larger appreciation for the black population.) The question of exactly why Lincoln did take such extreme measures to suppress secession remains unanswered but whatever it was it wasn’t worth 600,000 dead and wrecking half the country. It is worth noting that both Madison and Jefferson in the controversy about the Alien and Sedition Acts argued that secession and nullification were inherent in the Constitution.

        1. My broad comment would be that not everything that has ever been done that was “legal” or even “constitutional” was necessarily right, though I generally agree with what you have implied about the items on your list.

          As a Pennsylvanian one of my particular events of interest is the Whisky Rebellion. There, federal tariffs and excise taxes were imposed to favor manufacturers, that would be borne by small farmers, and used to support armies to be used against those same farmers if they rebelled.

          The working example was the Whisky Rebellion, where the First Congress imposed an excise tax on distilled spirits. That particularly targeted western Pennsylvania farmers, who had minimal representation in congress, so could not defend themselves against “representative government”, and had no way to monetize their crops other than to convert grain to easily transportable alcohol. Congress chose to tax their sole source of monetary income. They were targeted specifically, while manufacturers were let entirely off the hook.

          George Washington also needed to “make an example” of any dissenters to this manifestation of so-called representative government, doing what it was designed to do; and to test the efficacy of “divide and conquer” as a tool for managing the formerly sovereign colonies. He found he had no problem, getting approximately 13,000 militia from New Jersey to march to Allegheny County, PA, to crush their farmer brethren and fellow citizens. The stage was set for the rest of U.S. history.

          The one thing I would dispute in your commentary is the implication that the Whisky Rebels in any way were regarded as “deplorables.” Only “dissentets” as far a I know, and despite beautiful words in our founding documents, those holding the keys to power were not about to tolerate dissent. At that time their frontier culture was identical to that of farmers living ten miles from Center City Philadelphia.

          Every issue about the Whisky Rebellion was entirely economic, and the rebellion itself was a “tax protest” that was crushed for the purpose of establishing the supremacy of the federal government. Unless you could pack the congress, you learned not to complain. If you could pack the congress, you learned that taking up your gun against your neighbor could be rewarding.

          I have done considerable reading of books about the Whisky Rebellion, and I really don’t remember any that weren’t entirely sympathetic to the rebels. But then, we all apply confirmation bias to our reading.

          1. “””My broad comment would be that not everything that has ever been done that was “legal” or even “constitutional” was necessarily right, though I generally agree with what you have implied about the items on your list.”””

            I think we all should remember this: not all that has been done is Constitutional; indeed, much has never even been challenged in Courts; not all that has been delcared Constitutional by the Courts actually is Constitutional, and not all that has been declared unConstitutional is actually unConstitutional. Finally, not all that is Constitutional (whether by Court Decree or otherwise) is necessarily right.

            It irks me to no end when someone says “But the Supreme Court said it’s Constitutional, so it is!”, because there’s a plethora of Supreme Court decisions that are clearly unConstitional — and some of them have even been overturned by the Supreme Court itself. Just because the Supreme Court says something, doesn’t mean that all debate on that one decision ends. Indeed, in some cases, it’s only the beginning of the debate.

            But some people seem to think that the Supreme Court is the Law of the Land, when there’s two more branches of Government, fifty mini-governments, and the entirety of the Public who still get a say in every matter.

        2. Hoover’s federal intervention in the Bonus Army march is another questionable example. After two Bonus Marchers (unemployed WWI veterans seeking early payment of a bonus promised them for 1945) were killed by Washington, DC, metropolitan police, Hoover instructed Douglas MacArthur to use federal troops to quell the violence. Instead, MacArthur used troops, arsenic-based irritant gas, and more violence to clear the Bonus Marchers’ camp. Dwight Eisenhower, who was a junior aide to MacArthur, referred to MacArthur as a “dumb son-of-a-bitch” at the time, but after the temporary suppression of the Bonus March was successful, and MacArthur and Hoover pretended “we both meant to do that”, opportunist Eisenhower authored the Army’s official report endorsing the violence.

          The event contributed strongly to Hoover’s defeat by FDR in November. Apparently voters were not much concerned with the legality of what was done, as compared to, just what was done. Marine Lt. General Smedley Butler declared himself a “Hoover for ex-president Republican.” Public reaction resulted in the bonus being paid in 1936, nine years early, though even FDR resisted its payment.


          Not really relevant, but my late uncle, who was captured at Corregidor and spent all of WWII in Jap prison camps, hated MacArthur, considering him a “deserter”, though MacArthur had been ordered to desert his post by FDR. But from time to time my uncle would also cite MacArthur’s suppression of the Bonus Army, though he had been only ten years old when it occurred.

          1. The Bonus Marchers had a legitimate beef but there was no other authority than the army that could act since DC is not a state. There was an army intelligence report stating that this was the leading edge of a Communist insurrection that also implicated the USMC in the plot. Probably false but it was what Hoover had to work with.

            As for the Whiskey Rebellion, the word ” deplorable” had not be nouned yet but there was a very strong urban-rural divide going on as well as establishment-dissident. So I think it fits.

            No problem with your distinction between constitutional and right but I note that much of the criticism of Trump’s actions has focused on the constitutional issue.

            1. “There was an army intelligence report stating that this was the leading edge of a Communist insurrection”

              It’s amazing how long that has held its utility for justifying everything from crushing labor strikes to invading banana republics. Someone, somewhere will always be saying it, and all the justifiers need to do is grant any such rumor credibility. (I’m remembering that the local rumors of a big riot coming at a local major intersection, originated with a cop. There wasn’t even any traffic interference.)

              It never hurts to associate opponents with Communism, either. The USMC’s Smedley Butler was already on Hoover’s shitlist, so what could have been better than to associate opposition to Hoover with “Communism”? All Hoover needed was to have someone say it to him, so he wouldn’t be lying.

              “Tailgunner Joe” McCarthy watched and learned.

              1. Could have been an Army/USMC hostile relation too. That happens. And there were real communists associated with the Bonus March.

              2. “there were real communists associated with the Bonus March.

                I’ll always apologize for my uncontrolled, Old Story flashbacks, but it doesn’t stop me from repeating them: :-)

                One of my Army Basic Training memories is of being seated in a room and handed a list of organizations that we were asked if we ever held membership in. The funny part of the tale is, I remember the DI saying “Don’t waste my goddamn time reading that list, because most of you have never even belonged to the Boy Scouts.”

                It was the first time I saw that list, though I’d see it again many times over the years when I worked in high security. What stuck in my mind, because it was alphabetically at or near the top of the list, was the “Abraham Lincoln Brigade.” The additional funny dimension was that the Abraham Lincoln Brigade had only existed briefly, ten years before any GI in that room was born.

                The Abraham Lincoln Brigade had been the U.S. contingent that went to Spain, to resist the coup launched by Franco’s fascists to overthrow the democratically elected republican government. Franco was militarily supported by Hitler and Mussolini. Unfortunately the resistance to fascism included many “real communists”, including Stalinists and troops supported by the Soviet Union.

                As a result, membership in the Abraham Lincoln Brigade put U.S. citizens on the “official” U.S. Government blacklist for the remainder of history. Certainly some of its members were communists, but even that didn’t necessarily imply collusion with the Soviet Union, any more that the NRA’s delegation to Russia implied direct collusion with Putin.

                At some point in history, someone coined the term “premature antifascists” for members of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, meaning their crime was, having gone to war with fascism, and allying with the Soviets, several years before it became Official Government Policy. They had stood next to “real communists” before that became SOP for the U.S. Government.

                My apologies again, but I have spent many years contemplating the “accidents of history” that have shaped my life. For example, I could not have held jobs that I did, had I known I had living relatives in the Soviet Union. The accident was that I did not know yet. I could not have held those jobs had I ever been to Russia or China — though that was determined more by economics and culture as the “accidents.” And I was born almost a decade after the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, and none of my relatives had joined it.

                1. Actually, there were real communists already embedded in the USG, they were just in hiding. Hard to tell how many but Alger Hiss certainly was around during the Abraham Lincoln Brigade days. I suppose we will forever be arguing about the status of Henry Wallace who was secretary of Agriculture in those days and later VP. He would have been President had not FDR had an inkling of his upcoming death and replaced him with Truman. Although the Soviets and now the Chinese have exploited our divisions, in my opinion the real threat is domestic leftists, not foreign agents.

                  1. “Although the Soviets and now the Chinese have exploited our divisions, in my opinion the real threat is domestic leftists, not foreign agents.”

                    I guess in theory you and I are looking in opposite directions, because I still see external threats like Russia and China being our greatest threats, the historical difference being that now they are both (arguably) fascist, more so than communist, anyway, and I think it is more than coincidental that International Fascism has been in its ascendancy all over the globe in the 2010s.

                    If you don’t like “fascism” lets not quibble over definitions, just settle on “authoritarianism to advance an elitists’ economic system.” In the U.S. that encompasses both the “left” and the “right.”

                    1. Technically, you are correct as the Left has now become corporatist which is the very definition of fascism. However, the cultural component is much more aligned with cultural Marxism. So potato, potatoe.

                      At any rate, I am ready to support Elizabeth Warren if she really wants to squash the tech oligarchs. But I doubt she does.

      1. You are correct, of course. Troops were deployed by Johnson in the 1968 MLK assassination riots in Washington, DC, and Nixon did the same for riots related to the student strikes of 1970, and possibly again the following year.

        I mainly referenced that article for its historical content, but should have critiqued its title. The “killed his chances for reelection” seemed politically relevant to 2020.

        Maybe “cleared demonstrators from Pennsylvania Avenue” is the quibble? Did the Johnson or Nixon actions involve that, or just the suppression of riots?

        1. As I recall, the Nixon/LBJ actions were directed against demonstrators against the war rather than rioters though there was some violence involved in the demonstrations. Johnson’s record though also includes a riot following the assassination of MLK.

          btw, I have found references to Wilson deploying troops to 20 cities to suppress anarchist violence. Don’t have a good source yet.

        2. The Great Depression had something to do with Hoover not being reelected. Just spitballing here.

          1. To get technical, Hoover’s approach to the Great Depression (compared to what FDR was proposing) had something to do with him not being reelected. Not saying who was right or who was wrong, just saying it was in what people perceived about each of them. Hoover’s (actually MacArthur’s) treatment of the Bonus Army fueled that perception — so they say. I wasn’t there and there is no one left alive to ask, except people who were little kids at the time.

            I too will check out Wilson’s use of troops. I would caution that in some cases, they may have been paramilitaries like the American Legion, which had been formed for such purposes in 1919.

            1. Actually FDR attacked Hoover from the right until after the election. Hoover’s reaction wasn’t too different than what FDR actually did until later. But Hoover presided over the disaster.

          2. “I too will check out Wilson’s use of troops.”

            I didn’t need to look too long to have my memory refreshed. Wilson did deploy troops, in domestic unrest, multiple times. Possibly the first was following the Ludlow Massacre, and the “Ten Days War” that was part of the “Colorado Coalfields War” of 2014.

            Relevant to there being others the following snippet is from Wikipedia. I won’t provide the link, only because there appears to be several articles that are equally relevant. I don’t know if there are any that verify there were twenty incidents or not. It appears to be more, as the snippet says “two dozen other.”

            In 1919, another series of race riots occurred in Washington D.C., Chicago, Omaha, Elaine, and two dozen other cities across the country. The United States Department of War intervened with thousands of federal troops dispatched to Washington, Omaha, and Elaine so that order would be restored to these troubled cities.

            Similar to our discussion of “communists in the Bonus Army” I would caution not to generalize that the purpose of calling out troops was to resist “anarchists.” In the “labor wars” there were both anarchists and communists among the striking workers, but they were not representative of the motivations of most of the workers. Citing them served the same purpose served by Trump and Barr citing “antifa”.

            The “Labor Wars” first began to interest me when I learned of the “Battle of Blair Mountain” which mainstream historians consider second only to the Civil War as an insurrection in U.S. history. There roughly 10,000 miners were arrayed against federal troops called out by Harding, and aerial bombardment was used against U.S. citizens for the first time. But there the miners surrendered as soon as confronted by U.S. soldiers, who they considered “their own kind.”

            1. I have actually been to Ludlow and toured the site.

              The miners in the Blair Mt. war are said to be the origination of the term “redneck” from their bandannas. So in modern terms they would be deplorables.

              Wilson did have a thing about anarchists so I am sure they did figure in his calculations. After all they had assassinated one of his immediate predecessors and tried to get another one. Although he could not know this, they would later try to assassinate FDR. As for socialists, he did imprison the socialist candidate that ran against him in 1916. Harding eventually pardoned Thomas.

              1. “The miners in the Blair Mt. war are said to be the origination of the term “redneck” from their bandannas.”

                I know the miners at Blair Mountain wore red bandanas, and I had the impression they were the originators, or at least the West Virginia miners were. I believe red is still symbolic of the labor movement in England, though all its connotations here are bad.

                I have to say, I have heard so many variations of the story about where the term “redneck” came from, that I don’t know what to believe. I knew someone who claimed that it dated back to the border wars between England and Scotland, with the Scots having worn red bandanas; and then the Scots-Irish in Appalachia adopted it, according to that version.

                Personally — for years I just assumed it referred to someone who did manual labor in the sun, like the farmers in my area when I was a kid, who during the summer had chronically sunburned necks.

              2. I checked on Wikipedia’s explanation for the term and they appear to lean toward mine. In any case, it appears there is historical record of the term being used in America well before the mine wars.

                (Not that I think that Wikipedia is the last word on everything, but usually it gives reasonable starting points to follow up on. In this case, an indication that the term was in use prior to the historical events we cited.)

              3. I love these discussions because they always lead to fascinating reading!

                Still according to Wikipedia’s article on James K. Vardaman the first political usage of “redneck” was to describe his supporters in 1910. They used the term to label themselves.

                According to that article, referring to the 1890 Mississippi state constitution, Vardaman said:

                There is no use to equivocate or lie about the matter…. Mississippi’s constitutional convention of 1890 was held for no other purpose than to eliminate the nigger from politics. Not the ‘ignorant and vicious’, as some of the apologists would have you believe, but the nigger…. Let the world know it just as it is…. In Mississippi we have in our constitution legislated against the racial peculiarities of the Negro…. When that device fails, we will resort to something else.

                That in support of your point that “redneck” meant “deplorables.” In that example they certainly were!

                1. I am not sure how reliable Wikipedia is on anything remotely political.

                  But to go off in a different direction, given that we seem to agree that it is legal for a President to use troops to suppress domestic disorder, let’s talk about Mattis and Milley objecting to Trump’s efforts. Both seem to me to be efforts to incite mutiny. In the case of Mattis as a retired officer, I suppose he has 1A rights unless there is something in the UMCJ to control retired officers. But Milley is a serving officer. If he has a problem following a legal order, he should resign. Yes?

                  1. “I am not sure how reliable Wikipedia is on anything remotely political.”

                    The way I look at things is, Wikipedia is pretty reliable in reporting the consensus regarding what the facts were, and that is largely independent of “ideology”; and as often as not will report alternative spin as having existed, when it did. I can think of an example or two where I have known popular consensus was wrong, based on what I had witnessed personally, but I had/have no way of proving what I witnessed with my own eyes, or heard with my own ears, so widely contradicting the consensus would be pointless and reduce to “he said/he said”, and I would not expect my personal commentary to be showcased.

                    Milley is a serving officer. If he has a problem following a legal order, he should resign. Yes?”

                    Absolutely! He disappoints me that he didn’t retire before, or that as a senior officer he allowed himself to be snookered. He’s served 40 years now. My reservation is that that could be Trump’s tactic; to weed out officers who aren’t loyal to him, personally.

                    But I have to admit that as a former enlisted man, and conscript, I’m more sympathetic to troop mutinies than most. They could conscript men, but they couldn’t always conscript their consciences. One of my cousins in Europe was a Soviet Army Officer at one time, yet was among the crowd of thousands that surrounded and blocked Soviet tanks when the USSR collapsed; an inspiring model!

                    1. I don’t care if generals are loyal to Trump personally. I care that they honor their oath to defend the Constitution. And Trump is operating within the Constitution more than any President since Eisenhower. Or Coolidge.

                      I will also note that Milley while not liking the optics of involving the military in domestic politics, by doing his public mea culpa, involved the military in domestic politics. A quiet resignation would have soothed his wounded pride and would not have been an incitement to mutiny.

                      We are at a very dangerous point and I don’t think the republic will survive this, no matter who wins in the end. The organs of state security have already attempted a coup. Is the military next?

                    2. “Trump is operating within the Constitution more than any President since Eisenhower. Or Coolidge.”

                      When Trump said “I have an Article 2 where I have the right to do whatever I want as president” that pretty much said it all about his regard and intent for the constitution. Not unlike Richard Nixon’s contention that “If the president does it, it’s not illegal.” It is essentially the belief that constitutionality is determined by what the chief executive does.

                      Flashback: I remember an NRA attorney who the Republicans allowed to write the preamble for the NRA’s 1995 gun control bill in Pennsylvania. When he was traveling around the state to gun clubs to promote the legislation on behalf of Tom Ridge and the NRA, he was claiming his words — in a fundamentally anti-gun bill — made the state constitution more powerful. I.e., by him citing Article I, Section 21, of the state constitution in a gun control bill, he was making that provision more powerful. Of course the effect was exactly the opposite — a precedent for what that Article and Section permitted the state to do.

                      Forgive the flashback, but the analogy to a chief executive who has no knowledge of what the constitution actually says, “obeying the constitution”, seemed close enough to bring it back to me.

                    3. “””When Trump said “”I have an Article 2 where I have the right to do whatever I want as president” that pretty much said it all about his regard and intent for the constitution.”””

                      This is a pet peeve of mine about President Trump’s administration for a long time, enough so that this is a factor as to why I’m voting for him this next election: I want to spite the Press and everyone else who takes President Trump out of context in an effort to paint him in as bad a light as possible.

                      This particularl quote (like so many of Trump’s quotes) is seriously and maliciously taken out of context. I heard the context, and he was clearly talking about who can be fired in his administration. And yes, it is Article 2 that gives him power to do what he wants in this regard.

                      He wasn’t saying he could do anything, and considering how much he’s worked to restrain government, it’s clear that while he doesn’t always know what the Presidential boundaries are, he generally wants to stay in them. And he’s been much more restrained in this regard than most of his predecessors!

                    4. @Alpheus – I am voting for Trump for the same reason. I was NeverTrump the last election, but two things caused me to change my mind:

                      1. Trump has done well enough and been conservative enough (but no where near perfect). Especially around Judges and Justices (though the jury is still out on Kavanaugh in my mind) – which is even more important now that Roberts has continued to show what a squish he is (since he just let all 2A cases die, because reasons).
                      2. The absolutely insanity of the left, the media, and NeverTrumpers (which the later two are just technically the former). I am terrified what happens when the get power, and I want to put that off as long as possible, and get as many judges in as possible to help stem the tide.

                  2. “I am not sure how reliable Wikipedia is on anything remotely political.”

                    In other words it reports fact that don’t support your narratives.

                    1. I’ve never done it, but I have the impression anyone can edit a Wikipedia article. So, if you find something wrong, or you want to add an alternative interpretation of events, you can. I assume your cited facts have to be reliably sourced.

                      I frequently find the “Talk” page associated with a Wiki article more interesting than the article itself, usually because the merits of sources are discussed extensively.

                    2. It’s true that anyone could edit any Wikipedia article, except that (1) sometimes people will edit it back, and you can get yourself embroiled into an edit war, and (2) sometimes Wikipedia locks a given user out of changing things, and sometimes entire articles become locked. To the degree that there seems to be bias when this happens, it seems to be Left-leaning.

                      I put in a lot of weasel words because I don’t pay attention to Wikipedia, but the lesson I have taken from all this is that you should assume that all things are biased, and always wonder “what bias does this particular source have today, and what effect, if any, does the bias have on what I am reading?”

  7. Amazing how many still do believe the MSM, without questioning for a second, “could they be lying”?

    That has been my experience over the last few months with certain folks who I have had the opportunity to speak with.

    Many have what is called cognitive dissonance, yet they don’t go about resolving the conflict without getting some help…and they are not seeking help in solving the conflict. Partially, because they have learned to live with so much other conflict, what is one more issue left unresolved.

    Unresolved no more. When you force someone to question their “beliefs” watch out below…a dam of unexpected release is what follows, with a huge sense of “I knew that was to good to be true”.

    Talk to your fellow neighbor, co-worker, family member…they are looking for some balance in their lives…and it isn’t going to come from the the crazies and the asylum they run.

    1. “could they be lying”?

      I think that in my young life (more than 50 years ago) it was less a case of “lying”, exactly, as going along with the bigger societal lie. That, and laziness; reporters and journalists were above criticism as long as they went along with the consensus desired by any given administration.

      Vietnam will always be my generation’s life-example. For almost a decade most reporters did their reporting from a hotel bar and lounge in Saigon, working from field grade officers’ press releases. There were few exceptions, and being in a small minority, they weren’t listened to. It wasn’t until Walter Cronkite went to Vietnam and called bullshit on a decade’s worth of generals’ press releases that the national attitude began to change. At that it took the release of the “Pentagon Papers” to really break things open. Without documentation anyone who contradicted the consensus could be dismissed as a leftie, while journalists waited for the next round of drinks to arrive.

      1. Well, the general officer’s press release were bullshit. Just read Westmorland’s memoir. 500 pages of we are winning the war and only in the last half page, does he say we lost. Worst general since McClellan.

        But so was Cronkite’s crap. Sometime before he died he admitted he was on the other side.

        1. “Sometime before he died he admitted he was on the other side.”

          What side was that? The side opposed to generals lying, and guys like me dying for nothing?

          1. I’m guessing this is what you’re referring to?

            Cronkite said that he felt the same way about America’s presence in Iraq as he had about their presence in Vietnam in 1968 and that he felt America should recall its troops.[85]

            85. “Cronkite: Time for U.S. to Leave Iraq”. San Francisco Chronicle. Archived from the original on October 2, 2008. Retrieved April 26, 2006.

            Two wrongs may not make a right, but two rights certainly do. Both wars were national disasters.

            1. No not that. There was an interview where he said he had always been way out on the Left. Still looking for it. He said it didn’t affect his reporting. He may have actually believed that but it is completely impossible. The problem was that he had way too much power to shape opinion, driven both by the technology of the era and the overall Leftism of big media. (See Duranty).

    2. Some people refuse to even try to see the truth. My wife’s ex-brother in law refused to believe anything negative about hillary. His response was always “I can’t believe that”. Now with trump in office he’s gone completely bat shit crazy.

  8. @AndyB

    We seen to have blown out the limits of the comment section again.

    When Trump said “I have an Article 2 where I have the right to do whatever I want as president” that pretty much said it all about his regard and intent for the constitution. Not unlike Richard Nixon’s contention that “If the president does it, it’s not illegal.” It is essentially the belief that constitutionality is determined by what the chief executive does.

    As opposed to Obama with his pen and phone? My comment about Trump staying within the Constitution is based on what he has done as opposed to what he has tweeted. I don’t think there is anything he has actually done that has not been done before, multiple times. He may tweet “lock her up” but he hasn’t done it. Unlike Wilson. He may threaten military intervention over the objections of the local authorities to put down disorder but he hasn’t done it. Unlike Eisenhower and JFK. He hasn’t lied his way into a wider war. Unlike LBJ and Bush. I don’t think he has even threatened to intern American citizens like FDR actually did.

    1. Another thing I pointed out is that President Trump was specifically talking about the power to fire IGs when he said this. The Press has blown up this particular quote to make it look like President Trump doesn’t think he has any limits on his power.

      Perhaps President Trump truly believes this — but if so, he has a funny way of showing it. If he does sincerely believe this, though, this particular statement doesn’t at all make it clear.

  9. “As opposed to Obama with his pen and phone?”

    I agree with you about Obama, but we are moving into “WhatAboutism” territory by citing him, and the other chief executives. Your complaint is that Obama was a subtle statist, while Trump lays his druthers out in front of God and everybody, and his people have to scramble to both restrain him and “reinterpret” him for public consumption.

    I forget who I’m quoting/paraphrasing, but it is much quoted that “when someone tells you who they are, believe them.” Most of my regrets in life spring from not having acted on that, soon enough. Trump tells us who he is when he tweets. That so far his generals, et al, have manged to shovel up his steaming piles, is irrelevant to who he really is.

    1. Again, I am contrasting actions vs words. Trump has harsh words but his actions have stayed within bounds of previous interpretations of of the Constitution. I don’t necessary agree with all of those interpretations but Trump is not an outlier.

      1. (Confounded side effect of breaking out of the threads!)

        To further complicate matters (as I’ve pointed out in two other threads now), this particular quote from President Trump has been deliberately taken out of context, to make him seem like a power-hungry out-of-control President. At the time, he was talking about firing IGs, and he was saying “Article 2 gives me the power to do whatever I want to do.” And, in this context, he is right. And he’s no different than any other President who exercised their power to fire IGs over the years.

        It’s a far cry from a “phone and a pen” that Obama talked about!

        Come to think of it, this reminds me of the “controversy” that hovered around Trump shortly after he took office: President Trump issued a *lot* of Executive Orders. “But you said you didn’t *like* EOs!” was the cry from the Left. Yes, I *don’t* like EOs; however, Trump was cancelling Obama’s EOs. Either Obama’s EOs were legitimate, in which case, they can be canceled by another legitimate EO, or they were illegitimate, in which case, they should be canceled regardless. If Obama wanted to live by the EO, he could die by the EO, as far as I’m concerned. Beyond that, of course, I dislike, but don’t have a complete problem with EOs; I just thought that some of Obama’s EOs were out of line, and some of them were unConstitutional, to boot.

Comments are closed.