Civic Insurrection

Dispiriting it is, most mornings, to start up my computer and begin reviewing the news: if it isn’t the return/revival of the Chinese Commie Crud, it’s the interesting spectacle of (mostly) blue cities – ones run for decades by the Democrat party, the party of slavery, secession, segregation and now socialism. Amazing that those cities are the ones most plagued by an unsavory coalition of nihilists co-sponsored by the Marxist-inspired Black Lives Matter and the straight-up communists of Antifa. (As amazing as the number of individuals corporations, large and small, who have been bamboozled into expressing support for the former group. As this commenter at Sarah Hoyt’s place remarked:

The large corporations are kind of caught in two grips of a vice. The first is that they’ve been hiring mostly college graduates, and most of the college graduates are from “progressive” or “liberal” institutions that have been soaked in this hatred of the West since the late ’60s at the earliest. It could be entirely possible that they could have gone entirely through a four year degree without having been exposed or having to seriously debate the other side of the arguments. The second grip in the vice is the power of the media-and especially social media-these days. It is very easy for the wokescolds to create a hue and cry that can ruin a company. And, an amazing number of these companies are in…careful shape. So, anything that risks the company has to be avoided)

Getting back to matters racial/social I find it purely amazing that after decades of official and ostentatious promoting of social justice, affirmative action and representation for the less-fortunate minorities, the less-fortunate minorities are even worse off then they were half a century ago.
(Thank you, for the crowbar required to remove my tongue from my cheek.)

While I suppose that the lefty-Antifa types and their patrons among the so-called elite ruling class are still aggrieved that their chosen one, the mere spouse of a sitting president was roundly rejected by the electorate just when it seemed that her coronation was in the bag, I wonder if the urban black constituency is motivated by an even deeper and inchoate anger, and are responding by displacement. Fair warning: this reasoning is based on nothing more than bits and pieces observed here and there on the internet, and on my own intuition about people, and the politics of resentment. What if it was that black Americans believed, wholeheartedly, that the election of Barak Obama would mean that they had arrived, that their cake was baked, the elevator had arrived at the penthouse apartment, and that all their problems and resentments within their community (most especially the severely dysfunctional ones; thug culture, endemic violence, lack of stable marriages, degradation of public schools, scummy and corrupt leadership on the part of officials elected over and over again from primarily black districts, lack of positive male role models, etc) would be miraculously resolved? The election of a sort-of-black president (although half white and half Kenyan-African, who was raised in relative privilege and experienced about as much of their lives as I do, possibly less than that, even) The chosen Black Prince of Chicago didn’t make any of that better at all, in spite of all their expectations … and who can be blamed now for that massive shipment of Fail? Discuss as you wish.

26 thoughts on “Civic Insurrection”

  1. This piece by Tim Alberta of Politico ( appears to have been making the rounds, and feeds into your last ‘graph I think. After a bit of reflection on it, my initial reaction has turned. These folks sound like they recognize that 4 years of the Orange Man they hate did them more good than 8 years of Obama. They’re willing to say that other folks are going to re-elect him, even though they claim to not want it. I think they realize just what a symbol of Democrat rot Biden’s nomination is.

  2. Western Civilization was toast the minute it allowed the academy to be taken over by its nihilist enemies. The only real hope now is that those who never partook of the indoctrination somehow manage to preserve the essence of it all through the coming dark ages.

    We badly need a modern equivalent of those Irish monks that preserved and venerated all that was good and decent out what was lost when Rome fell. Instead of barbarians burning the libraries, today the librarians are “de-accessioning” everything they find problematic, which is most of the Western Canon. I wager that inside of another generation or two, every one of the “Great Books” is going to be burnt or pulped, and unavailable to the average “New Man” that’s coming. Along with everything else that is reality-based and worthwhile to anyone who isn’t a full-on screaming SJW.

    I really hope there’s someone out there doing the work of capturing all that they’re pulping and destroying, and keeping it safe from electronic erasure, or this entire period of history is going to go down as a dark age where all that work and wisdom was lost.

    Bastards. All of them–I would burn the ideologues on the same pyres they prepare for the books, but there aren’t enough sane people with the wisdom to see what they are doing to put a stop to the madness. We’re in a period of public insanity, I’m afraid, much like the one surrounding the French Revolution. There’s no telling how far it will go, or how far back things will swing. I kinda half-way expect that we’ll be seeing all the excesses of the LGBTWTF-barbecue visited upon them four- or five-fold, and they’re gonna go right back to living in the woodwork again, because I’m telling you, the “silent majority” is watching all this crap going on, scared out of their wits at the potential they see coming, and the counter-reaction based on that is going to be ‘effing epic. Y’all want race/gender/queer war? This is how you get it, by scaring the hell out of the normies. Tolerance is going to go the hell away, I suspect. The new Balkan-America is not going to be a fun place to live in for all the minority and self-identified “weird people” population fractions. I wouldn’t be surprised at all to see walled-in ghetto situations where people are told to take care of their own law enforcement.

    Which may be what a lot of these people want.

  3. That Politico piece was interesting. I had read quotes from it before. I am sympathetic to the black guy who was stopped by cops when he was looking at his new house and his son was stopped. On the other hand, a surgeon friend of mine rented a house from another surgeon. This was many years ago. The home owner surgeon was black, the renter was white. His kids were stopped by black kids (it was a black area of LA but very upscale) and their lunch money was stolen.

    Maybe the new black desire for segregation is right. I am just getting tired of the victim stories.

    Remember it was a neighbor who called the cops, just as it was a neighbor who called the cops on the black Harvard professor. What are the cops to do?

    We are getting very close to the point when there are no cops answering these calls.

    Read the story about Powder horn park.

    Acommunity in Minneapolis, where residents vowed not to call the police for local grievances as a protest against the death of George Floyd, is reportedly facing a law and order problem after 300 homeless people turned their local park into a camp and drug peddling zone.

    Dozens of homeless tents were reportedly erected at Powderhorn Park, which is populated with white liberal residents.

    The New York Times reported drug peddling, prostitution, property damage, armed robberies and other crimes are on the rise in this Minneapolis community.

    Some residents reported being catcalled and harassed, while others have avoided bringing their kids and dogs to the park because it is no longer safe.

    It takes a heart of stone not to laugh at these people.

  4. The election of a sort-of-black president (although half white and half Kenyan-African, who was raised in relative privilege and experienced about as much of their lives as I do, possibly less than that, even) The chosen Black Prince of Chicago didn’t make any of that better at all, in spite of all their expectations … and who can be blamed now for that massive shipment of Fail? Discuss as you wish.

    I believe that blacks have placed too much hope in politics as a way of advancement. Granted, legislation getting rid of Jim Crow was a step in the right direction. That came with two warnings. First, Jim Crow was an example of government power used to oppress blacks. Government power is not inherently good. Second, as Thomas Sowell has pointed out, most of the improvement in blacks’ economic situation relative to whites occurred in the 2-3 decades before the passage of the Civil Rights Act in 1964.

    The mere presence of black politicians has done very little for blacks. Blacks are very well represented in Congress, with blacks in about 10% of the seats in the House of Representatives, thanks in part to egregiously gerrymandered districts. While many or even most Blacks in the House of Representatives are not scoundrels, there are too many scoundrels among them. Maxine Waters? I could write pages on Maxine. Barbara Lee (D-CA) tells us it is impossible to feed a family on a SNAP/food stamp budget, when her mother and grandmothers fed their families on less. Jesse Jackson Jr. went from Congress to jail. Because most black Congressmen have safe seats, they have no need to moderate their views to attract votes. Because they are in safe seats, they know that there is no competition ready to spill the beans on their corruption, so they get “careless.”

  5. Kirk: “We badly need a modern equivalent of those Irish monks that preserved and venerated all that was good and decent out what was lost when Rome fell.”

    Spot on, Kirk! The good thing is that we can start by ALL being Irish monks. Collect books — the Great Books, yes. But also books on mathematics, woodworking, electricity, plumbing codes, computing, geology, farming. Physical books, not digital. When the world moves forward, they can be scanned again.

    Remember that all the current insanity is taking place against a background of certain unavoidable inevitable financial collapse. It is simply not sustainable for countries to have unbalanced trade indefinitely (either deficit or surplus). It is not sustainable for politicians to print money, run up unrepayable debts, and make pension & health care promises which can never be redeemed. That which can’t continue … won’t.

    The form & timing of the coming collapse is impossible to predict. We may be surprised — New Zealand could be left almost uninhabited after a race war between the Maoris and the European interlopers, while Texas may assert its independence and survive relatively unscathed. But once the dust settles — decades or possibly centuries into the future — we can at least leave the survivors the seeds of knowledge for regrowth.

  6. Mike K:
    Read the story about Powder Horn Park. ….. It takes a heart of stone not to laugh at these people.

    Another resident, Mitchell Erickson, said he was cornered by two Black teenagers near his home with a gun to his chest, demanding his car keys. Erickson admitted he broke the neighborhood’s vow and dialed 911 but immediately regretted doing so because he may have “put those boys in danger of death.”

    Mr. Erikson apparently never realized that those who point guns at people are putting other people “in danger of death.” Aren’t those who are putting others “in danger of death” also putting themselves “in danger of death?” Action, reaction… consequences….

  7. Gringo, good point about the relationship between Jim Crow and the 1960s Civil Rights legislation. I think many of our troubles can be traced to a failure to deal forthrightly with the fact that Jim Crow was government-enforced segregation and second-class citizenship for blacks, akin to apartheid. The ‘racists switched sides’ claim feeds into the myth that Civil Rights legislation changed hearts and minds when the reverse is true, and has lead to current efforts to police thoughts and expression through a variety of means.

  8. The mere presence of black politicians has done very little for blacks.

    In theory, black Americans should be socialized to a western POV but that is not what we see in these inner city residents. Minneapolis is not like Chicago, or wasn’t until now.
    I keep coming back to the story of Zimbabwe. As Rhodesia, it was wealthy in spite of international sanctions. Blacks had limited rights but they had jobs. Now, in theory, they run the place but there are no jobs.
    Theodore Dalrymple explains some of why it happened.

    By contrast, our relations with our African medical colleagues were harder-edged, because the social, intellectual, and cultural distance between us was far reduced. Rhodesia was still a white-dominated society, but for reasons of practical necessity, and in a vain attempt to convince the world that it was not as monstrous as made out, it had produced a growing cadre of educated Africans, doctors prominent among them. Unsurprisingly, they were not content to remain subalterns under the permanent tutelage of whites, so that our relations with them were superficially polite and collegial, but human warmth was difficult or impossible. Many belonged secretly to the African nationalist movement that was soon to take power; and two were to serve (if that is the word to describe their depredations) as ministers of health.

    Unlike in South Africa, where salaries were paid according to a racial hierarchy (whites first, Indians and coloured second, Africans last), salaries in Rhodesia were equal for blacks and whites doing the same job, so that a black junior doctor received the same salary as mine. But there remained a vast gulf in our standards of living, the significance of which at first escaped me; but it was crucial in explaining the disasters that befell the newly independent countries that enjoyed what Byron called, and eagerly anticipated as, the first dance of freedom.

    The black doctors, paid the same salary as the whites, had a different social structure.
    Black politicians see no reason to be honest. They are there to profit for themselves and their allies. Their voters seem not to mind.

  9. I think the white liberals viewed Barry’s election in terms of arriving and that he would double down in the social justice, affirmative action, welfare measures supposed to raise the black community socially and economically. Their paradigm has always been, put enough blacks in charge with enough free stuff and the systemic issues in the black community would disappear. I put the majority of the higher educated and financially well off blacks with the white liberals. Barry tried all that and it merely increased the black poorer community’s blight, not to mention their aggrieved attitude.

    What did the the blacks caught in the ghetto plantation think about Barry’s election? Well, I think it was largely that they would get more subsidizing of their self-destructive behaviors. I didn’t witness much self concern about changing these systemic cultural norms to allow real changes in the pathology of their self abasement. Just “give me free stuff” without any responsible or productive effort. I can understand why their frustration grew as they discovered that more free stuff hardly reduced their pain. As the white and black liberal coalition doubled down on this failed strategy with full support of the lower income black community, the “whitey is a racist and is denying us what we want/need” rallying call grew. What could we expect their community organizers to communicate to them? What part of their community leadership, political, media, social, religious, or educational institutions will persuasively counter this narrative?


  10. I think I’ve become a big, beautiful rhinoceros.

    See, I’ve found a way to demand payback against some people I’m a little ticked at in real life, and against lawyers and judges as a whole. Justifying the acts in terms of abolishing systemic white supremacism.

    I’ve maybe found it in myself to talk myself off the ledge.

  11. I didn’t witness much self concern about changing these systemic cultural norms to allow real changes in the pathology of their self abasement. Just “give me free stuff” without any responsible or productive effort.

    A friend of mine had an unused condo in Boston at the time of the hurricane that devastated Houston. His daughter had used it while in college in Boston. He, being a nice guy (a bit naive), offered the condo as a temporary shelter to a black family displaced by the hurricane. They moved in and showed no sign of moving for months after. Requests were ignored until he finally cancelled the cable TV.

  12. Bottom line: no one can make you happy. Having things cannot by itself make you happy. Only you can make you happy.

    Not having necessary things can make you UNhappy, but the converse, without more, is not true.

    The problem with the underclass – apart from low intelligence – is that they don’t realize this, and consequently they’re scratching where it doesn’t itch.

  13. I think it was the AEI guy, Arthur Brook, but it may have been someone else that argued studies show (don’t ask me what studies) that it was “earned success” that made for happiness. Of course, that makes sense – we are much happier knowing it was extra work that bought that air conditioner, that it was a wise choice that made for a happy marriage. The minute we put the locus of control outside ourselves in our minds the less anything gives us a sense of accomplishment.

  14. And the disfunctional attitude we are pointing to is the essence of childishness. I really thought the more my parents could be manipulated to give me, the happier I’d be. That ended when my dad told me there was no allowance, cut grass in the neighborhood to earn what you can buy. I did have to pay for my mower, fuel, etc. I still remember that bike and go kart I bought for myself. That was a life lesson for which I am forever grateful to my parents. It had wide application in my life and even translated to greatly improved school grades.


  15. it may have been someone else that argued studies show (don’t ask me what studies) that it was “earned success” that made for happiness.

    It might have been “Flow” by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. I can never spell his name. He defines “Flow” as pleasure derived from mastery of a skill or talent. His example is driving a car, which most of his respondents used as an example. Doing a good job at anything is another.

  16. There may be something to that, Mike K – that the pure satisfaction of doing a good job, of having demonstrated skill and mastery, of bringing off some complicated and difficult project to a grand and successful conclusion – it is very personally very satisfying.

  17. I still remember reading a long Vanity Fair article (Are there any other Kind?) in the run up to the ’08 election about Obama’s community organizing days. I thought at the time that it was hardly advancing their cause.

    It started with his arrival in Chicago, intent on increasing job opportunities by attracting industry into the area for “his” people. Chicago being Chicago, it ended with his agitating to get the housing authority to fix broken hallway lights and leaking toilets.

    He went to law school and did quite well for himself, I wonder how many of the people he “organized” went on to multi-million dollar homes when the housing projects were imploded?

    Biden’s last honest job was probably as a life guard and that as a public employee.

    It may be my imagination, but I hear murmurings asking why the Democratic administration of Minneapolis shouldn’t be brought to account for Floyd’s death from actual Black Americans.

    You would think the present pandemic fiasco would enlighten more people on the limits of government and on it’s usual incompetence. At the same time, you’s think that looking back at past “demonstrations” in places like Watts and Detroit would show the utter futility of burning your own house down in order to punish your supposed oppressors.

  18. There may be something to that, Mike K

    He is a big name and that book is a big deal in CQI circles.

    That and the Toyota method. The Flow concept is considered important in designing work. Taylor and Gilbreth are passe’, mocked in Charlie Chaplin’s movie, “Modern Times.”

    I spent a year at Dartmouth working on the idea of CQI in Medicine. Did a couple of grant requests that did not get funded, I think because we were too soon.

    A friend of mine, who ran a Preferred Provider Organization, told me I was two years too soon. I had lunch with him two years later and he told me I was still two years too soon. Obama care came along and wrecked the system 10 years later.

    I did a post on this a few years ago.

  19. }}} and who can be blamed now for that massive shipment of Fail?

    The same ones already there as the Fall Guys, that Teh One continued to blame throughout his anointed leadership: Whites, especially White males.

  20. It hardly bears repeating that destruction is easy, construction is hard. (Two cliches, one sentence, I’m on a roll.)

    The good folks of Minneapolis may be starting to realize that they’re on the hook for the cost of replacing the precinct. I assume it served some necessary function. Some of the smarter ones understand that they’ll have to do it with a lot less money coming in. All the taxes from those non-essential businesses add up and a lot of them aren’t coming back, even the ones not burned or looted. If I had any money to invest, I sure wouldn’t put it into a restaurant or bar, at least not for a couple of years.

    The Detroit three would still be building land yachts, full of rattles and squeaks and leaks if they could get away with it. The Japanese car makers ruined their money machine where they could turn out the same crap year after year and the buyers didn’t have any other choice. The medical establishment will behave no differently until there’s an alternative. Why should they work to improve a system when they can just turn the crank on the one they have and money keeps pouring out the other end. Mike’s idea was probably still two years too soon until this year, things may have changed.

    Efficiency has its down side. One of the reasons our hospitals were stressed but not really overwhelmed is all the normally wasted resources that could be redirected when it really mattered. I notice that Wal-Mart still has a lot of empty shelves, probably because their supposedly super efficient procurement has left them with few alternatives willing to do business with them. Just In Time works really well until the least little thing causes a disruption and this has been much more than that.

  21. It’s an interesting thought but my problem with it is that many, if not an out and out majority, of the rioters seem to be white Marxists. As far as I’m concerned race is the pretext rather than the reason and we should think in terms of Mao’s Cultural Revolution for what is going on. @_@

  22. I have seen a report that 17% of the rioters/demonstrators are black. The rest are white. The looters were mostly black. The guy in Minneapolis, who was carrying an umbrella like a tour guide and went along breaking windows to set off the rioting was white.

  23. It’s really hard to take sincere adherents to Black Lives Matter seriously when they are so easily shunted aside and dominated by white Becky’s and their soy boy satellites. In fact, it’s hard not to snicker. Seeing them harangue and berate black people says it all.

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