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Dear Black Lives Matter: Tear down mosques, not churches

Dear Black Lives Matter: Tear down mosques, not churches. By Peter Burrows 6/29/20 elburropete@gmail.com – slivercityburro.com 

From The Daily Wire, June 23, 2020: ‘Tear Them Down’: BLM Activist Shaun King Calls for Destruction of Jesus Christ Statues, Churches: ‘White Supremacy,’ ‘Oppression,’ ‘Racist Propaganda’  – Shaun King, the controversial Black Lives Matter activist known for pushing false claims, called for the destruction of Jesus Christ statues and Christian churches for their depiction of the “white” holy family, which King argued are forms of “white supremacy” and “racist propaganda” that promote “oppression.” 

“Yes, I think the statues of the white European they claim is Jesus should also come down,” the activist posted via Twitter on Monday. “They are a form of white supremacy. Always have been.” 

“In the Bible,” King continued, “when the family of Jesus wanted to hide, and blend in, guess where they went? EGYPT! Not Denmark.” 

“Tear them down.” 

Good grief, Shaun. If you would have just checked the scriptures a little more closely, you would have known they actually wanted to go to Sweden but that flight was booked, so they opted instead for Denmark. When the Stockholm airport was snowed in, they had to land back in Egypt. Sheesh. Somebody might think you BLM types are really, really stupid, in addition to being mindlessly violent.    

But!! I know better, and I can prove it! Just bear with me. 

Jesus never owned slaves, nor as far as I know, did he ever advocate owning slaves. That would be mildly surprising, since slavery was widely accepted back then. Regardless, Seventeenth Century Christian abolitionists started the drive to eliminate slavery, and the American Civil War finally ended it. Not in the entire world, just in Europe and North America. 

Slavery still held on in parts of the Muslim world, and only a few years ago slavery became an accepted part of the ISIS ruled regions of the Middle East. That was because slavery is an accepted part of the religion of Islam. The website, The Religion of Peace, just published an article giving chapter and verse to this truth.  

https://www.thereligionofpeace.com/pages/quran/slavery.aspx

In the above article, there are citations to a number of authenticated stories about Muhammad and slaves he owned. These stories, called hadith, are similar to the Gospels of Christianity. The most revered are the “gospels” of Bukhari, and here are two that leave no doubt Muhammad owned black slaves: 

Narrated `Umar: I came and behold, Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) was staying on a Mashroba (attic room) and a black slave of Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) was at the top if its stairs. I said to him, “(Tell the Prophet) that here is `Umar bin Al- Khattab (asking for permission to enter).” Then he admitted me.‏ (Sahih al-Bukhari 7263, Book 95, Hadith 17. USC-MSA web (English) reference: Vol. 9, Book 91, Hadith 368.) 

Narrated Anas bin Malik: Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) was on a journey and he had a black slave called Anjasha, and he was driving the camels (very fast, and there were women riding on those camels). Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, “Waihaka (May Allah be merciful to you), O Anjasha! Drive slowly (the camels) with the glass vessels (women)!” (Sahih al-Bukhari 6161, Book 78, Hadith 187. USC-MCA web (English) reference: Vol. 8, Book 73, Hadith 182.) 

Given there is no doubt Muhammad owned black slaves and Jesus didn’t, we have to ask why mosques aren’t being threatened instead of churches. Silly question! BLM and the Muslims are on the same side in the farcical race scam being played out, and both would like to see, for different reasons, American political institutions destroyed.  

In addition, I have no doubt that Louis Farrakhan and his Nation of Islam will be very quick to show the BLM thugs that George. W. Bush was wrong when he said, “Islam is peace.” Ditto for many other mosques in America. Churches and synagogues are soft targets, the typical mosque could be an entirely different matter. The BLMs know this.  

Therein the proof that Shaun King and the BLM are NOT stupid, not mindlessly violent. They know just what they are doing, It’s the white people who are stupid and mindlessly acquiescent.  Now, if the BLM proves me wrong and they start to attack mosques, then I will apologize to Shaun King for ever doubting his stupidity.          

Islam and adolescent girls

Islam and adolescent girls by Peter Burrows elburropete@gmail.com 6/26/20 

I was surprised to learn that the population of Israel is over 17 percent Muslim. Any other Judeo-Christian nation with that many Muslims would be in a civil war. I wonder if Israel’s Muslim citizens are tacitly grateful to live in an oasis of civilization, free from the smothering requirements of sharia law.   

On the other hand, it could be the Muslims know their Jewish brethren have a low tolerance for sharia nonsense. I prefer that latter explanation, but what else would you expect from an old Islamophobe? 

It will therefore be interesting to see what happens in the wake of a recent Israeli court ruling that has, for the first time, indicted Israeli Muslims for facilitating the underage marriage of their daughters. The charges were brought against four families, and their daughters range in age from 11 to 14. 

Sharia law usually permits girls to be married as young as 9, although some Islamic scholars say girls can be married at any age. Also, sharia law explicitly empowers parents to arrange a virgin daughter’s marriage without her consent, regardless of age, which is no doubt what was about to happen in Israel.  

In Muslim ruled countries, attempts to raise the age of marriage to protect young girls from such a fate have often been met with violent outrage. Devout Muslims see such man-made laws as a desecration of both the Koran and the life of the Prophet Muhammad.   

In Islam, a man cannot divorce a pregnant woman, and to guard against this, Verse 65:4 in the Koran decrees a waiting period of three months, both for wives who have reached menopause as well as for wives “who have not yet menstruated.” Both the 1996 Saudi Arabian Khan/Al-Hilali translation, “The Noble Qur’an,” and the 2011 English version of the Pakistani translation by Sayyid Mawdudi, “Towards Understanding The Koran,” have scholarly annotations explaining that this part of the verse refers to prepubescent girls.  

Muslims are not free to disagree with this conclusion. Sharia law says, “Never explain a verse of the Holy Koran by your own opinion, but check on as to how it has been understood by the scholars of Sacred Law who came before you.” If your opinion differs, “forsake your wretched opinion and fling it against the wall.”  

A second verse in the Koran, Verse 33.21, tells Muslims that Muhammad lived a life worthy of emulation. Since Muhammad married a six-year-old and began having sex with the little girl when she was nine, a law that would prevent such a marriage is seen as a criticism of a man Allah says cannot be criticized.  (We know the Koran is from Allah because Muhammad said so. We know everything Muhammad did was approved by Allah because the Koran says so. Makes sense to me.) 

Thus, when Bangladesh considered a law banning child marriage, an Islamic authority said, “Banning child marriage will cause challenging the marriage of the Holy Prophet of Islam,” adding that 200,000 jihadists were ready to sacrifice their lives for any law restricting child marriage. In Iran, that wouldn’t be necessary because the law specifically allows girls to be married at the age of nine, in accord with Muhammad’s example.  

This is how Islam treats girls who are Muslims.  If you think non-Muslim girls would be exempt, you couldn’t be more mistaken. The Koran authorizes the sexual enslavement of non-Muslim women captured during war, and when ISIS was ravaging parts of Syria and Iraq, many unfortunate Yazidi and Christian women and children were raped by their Muslims captors, who felt no moral compunction against such behavior. It’s in the Koran, after all!   

In fact, ISIS published an instruction manual for its jihadists on the proper treatment of captive women, which answered a number of questions a jihadist might have. For example: “Question 4: Is it permissible to have intercourse with a female captive? A: It is permissible to have intercourse with a female captive. –Question 6: Is it permissible to sell a female captive? A: It is permissible to buy, sell, or give as a gift female captives and slaves, for they are merely property —Question 13: Is it permissible to have intercourse with a female slave who has not reached puberty? A: It is permissible to have intercourse with the female slave who has not reached puberty —.” 

The enterprising ISIS Muslims even raised money by selling their captive women, pricing them by age categories. You might guess that the most expensive would be those in the 20 t0 30 group, but you would be wrong. For only $84.60 you could buy, on average, a Yazidi or Christian woman. The most expensive female slaves were children in the 1 to 9 age range, with an average price of $169.21, twice that for a mature woman.  

When ISIS came under military threat, they moved their slave markets into Turkey, where they were protected by the Erdogan government, Erdogan being an unapologetic Islamic fundamentalist.  

If you are appalled by the foregoing, then you must, perforce, be appalled by the religion of Islam.  Islam commands jihad, and Islam commands women captured in jihad are slaves who can then be sexually abused, regardless of age.  No ifs, ands or buts. If you think this is some perversion of Islam, you are wrong.  

This is what Muslims MUST believe or they are considered apostates, and apostates can be murdered with no penalty because they “deserve to die.” The question then becomes, “Why do we allow Muslims to immigrate to America?”  

Personally, I would allow Muslims to immigrate here if they were escaping their religion, but, unfortunately, almost all of them are bringing their abominable religion with them, a religion totally incompatible with our Constitution and our common decency, which has its roots in Judeo-Christian ethics.  

People who defend Islam on multicultural grounds are morons, as are those who think Muslims represent a ‘race’ that must be protected.   If you have been a defender of Islam and Muslims, for whatever reason, you have defended the molestation of young girls, whether you knew it or not.   

Now, you know it.  

The New Racism

The New Racism by Peter Burrows 6/12/20 elburropete@gmail.com – silvercityburro.com

The charge that America is systemically racist is, unfortunately, all too true.  I know some of you are thinking, “But Burro, whenever someone who says that is asked to prove it, they can’t.”

You’re right, they can’t.  No mathematical analysis of racial disparities shows that there is any meaningful racism in America, but those analyses are looking at what racism used to be. The old racism was the majority discriminating against minorities. That’s dead. The new racism is the majority discriminating FOR minorities. In addition, and this is a biggie, the new racism has the majority discriminating against ITSELF.

Some of you are thinking, “Burro is off his rocker again,” but how else can you explain white people buying into the absurd charge that they have benefited from ‘white privilege?’ Jordan Peterson, the Candian psychologist, demolishes this argument on You Tube by noting that what is called white privilege is simply majority privilege and has nothing to do with race. Would white people enjoy white privilege in China? Japan? Zimbabwe?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JEESNpAu1EU&t=15s

He points out that skin color is not nearly as important as things like intelligence, personality, education, family, character, talent, etc.  If you think white privilege trumps all that, then you will believe the following story:

When I was about 12, I discovered Louis Armstrong.  My parents bought me a used trumpet and I began practicing. When Louis appeared at a nightclub in nearby Chicago, my parents drove me and my trumpet over to hear him. I wanted to sit in, and Louis made a big mistake by saying, “Sure, kid. Let’s hear what ‘ya got.”

Well, I proceeded to blow poor old Louis off the stand. He was begging me, “Stop white boy, stop! I can’t compete against white privilege!” And then there was the time I got in the ring with Ali, and the time I auditioned on SNL against Eddie Murphy and — you get the point.

Racism, racism, racism. That’s all we hear today from the Left side of our political spectrum.  The Democratic Party is obsessed with race, defining almost every issue terms of race. For example, I just read that nuclear generated electricity and radioactive waste have a “violent legacy of environmental racism and injustice against indigenous people.” This from a leftist group that opposes nuclear power.

This is an example of what I define as systemic racism, and the only place I see it is the left wing of American politics, especially the Democrat Party, not anywhere else. I don’t see it in groups like the KKK because the KKK isn’t in charge of anything.  Democrats and their leftist allies are in charge of the schools, the old media, the social media, the environmentalists, Hollywood, and most of the religious groups in America. It’s through those institutions the left spreads its racist lies.

Ironically, the Democratic Party is openly racist in their support for quotas, minimum wage laws, and denying school choice to parents. (See, “Take the ‘Who’s a racist’ quiz,” silvercityburro.com, 12/19/2019.) They get away with this because white Republicans are too intimidated to make race an issue even when the facts are on their side.

Black Republicans are another matter, but they lack both credibility and numbers. Black Democrats, however, if they start to see through the BS, could become the catalyst for both the destruction of the Democrat Party and the salvation of America, which are NOT mutually exclusive goals.  Whites can help, but far too many whites are blinded by ‘white guilt.’

Have you seen those videos of white girls on their knees begging forgiveness for their white privilege? I’m surprised we haven’t seen the little dears performing fellacio on the black punks to prove they aren’t racists. Those black punks must be laughing their asses off at these stupid white liberals, but the blacks who aren’t punks, and that’s the great majority, are not laughing as they watch their neighborhoods being destroyed.

In the past, such destruction might have had a glimmer of justification as racial protests, but in today’s mayhem there are white punks joining in the fun destroying black neighborhoods, and that may be a bridge too far.   When Black Lives Matter teams up with Antifa and this has the approval of Democrat mayors, both black and white, some of the good black people of America are starting to realize they’ve been had.

I hope it’s not too late. Harry Stein, a liberal turned conservative, dedicated a book he wrote thusly: “To black conservatives everywhere, shock troops in the battle for America’s soul.”

Amen, brother.

If I were “Mao For a Day”

If I were “Mao For a Day” by Peter Burrows 6/06/20 elburropete@gmail.com – silvercityburro.com

Some years ago on Meet the Press, famed New York Times columnist Tom Friedman said that he had often fantasized about America being China for a day so that we could “authorize the right solutions” for “everything from the economy to environment.”

Since China is a dictatorship, what Friedman really fantasizes about is Tom Friedman being a Mao Zedong for a day. Like most liberals, Friedman possesses invincible moral and intellectual certitude. That’s why his solutions would be the” right” solutions.

Well, the Friedmanites of the world are not the only ones who possess invincible certitude.  I have a list of things I’d do if I was ‘Mao for a day,’ hereafter MFAD.  My first list of MFADs addresses four issues that I perceive as posing existential threats to America. Two are external, two are internal.

1) No Mosques, no Muslims. Islam is an authoritarian theocracy totally incompatible with our Constitution. If you think otherwise, you are mistaken. I have written about this in the past and will do so again in the near future.

2) The death penalty for anybody involved in the manufacture or distribution of the synthetic drugs fentanyl and methamphetamine, and any analogue of those drugs, which are pouring into our country from China via Mexico. Death by OD will be administered after a tribunal reviews the evidence.  No death row for these offenders. They are busy killing us, and we should return the favor.

3) Any proposed Federal regulation must be reviewed by a Congressional oversight committee before it goes into effect, and if no such oversight occurs within 60 days, the proposed regulation is null and void and must be resubmitted – indefinitely.

Our Federal bureaucracy, by one estimate, issues 4,000 regulations per year, few of which are reviewed by the actual people we elect to pass laws. The Congressional Review Act of 1996 was supposed to restore this Constitutional responsibility, but has failed because it allows unreviewed regulations to automatically become law within 60 days.  My MFAD reverses that: No Congressional review within 60 days? Start over.

4) Anybody receiving a government payment cannot vote in that government’s elections. This would eliminate the biggest weakness of any democracy, which is politicians using the public purse to buy votes.  Essentially, any voter getting money from a government has a conflict of interest and shouldn’t be allowed to vote.

I know some of you are thinking, “Old Burro is off his meds again,” but let me explain. If you work for the Federal government, or if you are receiving Federal retirement checks, you can’t vote in Federal elections for Federal office holders. Ditto for state and local governments. I might even extend the restriction to include campaign donations. I’ll have to Mao mull that for a bit.

This would mean that in New Mexico, all the school teachers, University employees, state bureaucrats, state retirees, etc., could not vote for who is going to be their boss. In the last election, they all voted for the Democrat, who promptly gave them a pay raise. Some of that pay raise will go into union coffers to elect more Democrats, even though the taxpayers are not all Democrats. Sweet deal, isn’t it?

The prohibition includes Social Security and welfare recipients. No welfare recipient could vote for anybody who would be able to increase his or her welfare benefits, and no one whose SS benefits are over, for example, 30 percent of total income could vote in a Federal election.

Imagine how that would change the political landscape! The big negative is administering the eligibility lists, something best done by the IRS. This would mean that to vote, a person has to file a tax return. This could enable cross-checking with voter registration lists, another measure to reduce voter fraud.

I admit, number four needs a little Mao mulling, but I think it could fly. After those four, I have a long list of MFADs that are relatively trivial. None would require the use of force, although some people might say term limits “force” people out of elected positions, which is why I would grandfather all current office holders. Anybody running for office in the future would know the rules. Don’t like the rules? Don’t run for office. After term limits, in no particular order:

Tort reform requiring the loser pay court costs  –  A national voter ID card like Mexico has –  A national ‘Constitutional carry’ law for handguns – Leave the UN and form a League of Democracies –  Eliminate ethanol blending into gasoline – Legalize marijuana and have the FDA regulate THC levels – Raise Social Security retirement ages to reflect current mortality rates –  Eliminate the corporate income tax – Eliminate the estate tax – Eliminate the Dept. Of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) – Fold the EPA into the Department of the Interior and the Department of Education into HHS – Eliminate the Federal minimum wage law – eliminate subsidies for wind and solar – eliminate the EEOC division of DOJ – eliminate the Energy Information Division in the Department of Energy – eliminate the efficacy test  required for FDA approval of new drugs – Eliminate Federal fuel efficiency standards, e.g. CAFE – Eliminate Federal flood insurance –  figure out some way to penalize states that don’t allow parents to get school vouchers – etc., etc., etc., ad-damn-near-infinitum.

Is Islam a ‘race?’

Is Islam a ‘race’? By Peter Burrows, 5/25/20 elburropete@gmail.com – silvercityburro.com 

Is Islam a ‘race’? Most people I know would think that is a really, really dumb question, but most people I know aren’t liberals.  The liberals I know have to think about that question, proving that all you have to do to turn a liberal’s brains to mush is to mention the word ‘race.’  

For proof, see the following, from a liberal, one who even has a Ph.D.:  

re: is Islam a race? As a biologist, that is a difficult question because the genetic necessity of the category does not hold up to statistical testing. In other words, if racial categories are considered statistical treatments, we find more variability within the treatments than between them. At the scale of the individual case and only considering the evidence you have presented for cause and effect (which is again a problem of scale), then I would, of course, and meaninglessly, agree with you. 2/25/20 

I know what you’re thinking: “You made that up, Burro! Nobody, NOBODY could be so creatively stupid!” 

Nope.  I’m flattered if you think I’m smart enough to come up with such a convoluted parody of liberal thinking. It brings to mind something George Orwell once said: “One has to belong to the intelligentsia to believe things like that: no ordinary man could be such a fool.” 

To clarify the above answer from my liberal friend, his PhD. Is not in biology, but Forestry, and while he ends by agreeing with me, I had proffered no opinion, so I assume he knew that I don’t think Islam is a ‘race.’ In that he is correct.  

After all, if Islam is a race than Christianity is also a race, as is Hinduism, Buddhism, etc.  These ‘races’ must be further divided into sub-species, e.g., Islam would have the Sunni race, and the Shi’a race; Christianity would have the Catholic race and the Protestant race; and the latter would have its own subspecies, e.g. the Baptist race. 

All of which would mean that my Lutheran wife and I have had a very long biracial marriage, me being raised a Methodist. Of course, if I wished to join the Muslim race, all I would have to do is repeat the shahada: “There is one God who is Allah and His prophet is Muhammad.”  

Voila! I have changed my race! About now you are thinking, “Enough, Burro! We get it. Nobody can possibly think a religion is a race.”  

Au contraire, mon frere.  Trump’s terrorist travel ban targets mostly Muslim majority countries and has been called “blatantly racist” by the National Council of Churches. When Trump expanded the travel ban last January, The Executive Director of The National Immigration Justice Center said, “This Muslim Ban expansion is founded on nothing more than cruelty and racism.”  

Sadly, the terrorist travel ban should be against all Muslims but it isn’t. Trump was on the right path when he campaigned on an anti-Muslim theme, saying in 2015 that he was “calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what the Hell is going on. We have no choice.” 

That was then. Unfortunately, while the word ‘race’ turns liberals’ brains into mush, it also turns conservatives’ SPINES into mush. Trump advisors John Bolton and Sebastian Gorka, who were familiar with Islamic ideology are gone, and Trump now sounds like so many other politically correct morons. 

For example, the end of Ramadan, the Muslim holy month of fasting, is celebrated with a dinner called Eid al-Fitr, “Festival of Breaking the Fast.” The White House had hosted such diners since 1996 as a gesture of friendship to the Muslim world. Trump ended that tradition in 2017, and I had hopes there would never be another. However, he reinstated the dinner in 2018, continuing in 2019 and 2020.   

This year he put out a press release that read: “On Eid al-Fitr, the First Lady and I send our warmest greetings to Muslims in the United States and around the world as they celebrate. —Now more than ever we are reminded of the reassuring peace, uplifting love, and heartening fellowship that religion brings into our lives.  We send our best wishes for a blessed and joyous Eid al-Fitr.” 

“Reassuring peace”?  The Religion of Peace website has this tally for acts of atrocity committed by Muslims during this year’s Ramadan: 718 deaths in 175 attacks in 20 countries. The site notes that this year’s Ramadan didn’t have any incidents “in the name of other religions or from the much-touted ‘right-wing’ threat.” 

So, what has changed Trump the realistic campaigner into Trump the delusional President? I doubt he thinks Islam is a ‘race,’ and I hope he is engaging in some Machiavellian strategy to lull Muslims into a false sense of security, but I’m afraid that’s not the case. I think he just doesn’t understand Islamic fundamentals and for political reasons is trying to refute the charge that he’s a ‘racist.’. 

I’m saddened because I was hoping to cast a proactive vote for a president this year, instead of voting against whomever the Democrats nominate. But alas, Trump has joined his two predecessors, Obama and G.W. Bush, as just another useful idiot in the spread of Islam. I cannot vote ‘for’ a president who doesn’t recognize that Islam is an existential threat to our country. 

I wish there was a “None of the Above” on the ballot.  

 

Economics for Dummies and Liberals

Economics for Dummies and Liberals by Peter Burrows 5/19/20 elburrpete@gmail.com – silvercityburro.com

Most people hear the word “economics” and their minds shut down.  That’s too bad because the basic fundamentals of economics are not difficult to understand.  Most people would think that these fundamentals are just common sense. Maybe we should call it ‘simplenomics” so people wouldn’t be intimidated.

The most fundamental rule of economics is what I call the Brezhnev rule, named after the former Russian dictator. (I’d call it the “Burro” rule but then you wouldn’t be impressed.) Leonid Brezhnev ruled the Soviet Union from 1964 to 1982, longer than anyone except Stalin.  By most accounts, he wasn’t a bad guy as Russian dictators go. He certainly was reflective, as this statement reveals:

“It is an elementary fact that a society cannot consume what is not first produced and transported.” He made this statement, as I recall, when addressing the Duma, the Soviet Parliament, in a state-of-the- union type address.  It is an unremarkable economic statement except for the “and transported” part, which caught my attention and is why I remember it so clearly.

At the time I recalled pictures of piles of cabbages rotting at rail depots in Russia because their economic system was so poor in the “transporting” function, and I could understand why Brezhnev would mention it.  It’s not something an American would even think of because we take our distribution system for granted.  That doesn’t just mean roads and rails and trucks. It’s also Walmart and Kroger’s and McDonalds and all the enterprises involved in getting products from the producer to the consumer.

By mentioning “and transported,” Brezhnev was revealing a weakness in central planning that hadn’t occurred to me. Also, his comment that production was required before consumption impressed me as an elementary fact that I had never heard articulated before, certainly not by any Western politician.

I think trying to run a state-run economy is a crash course in “elementary” economic fundamentals, and If there is a more elementary economic fundamental than that things must be produced before they can be consumed, I don’t know what it is.  This has always been true. If you were a hunter-gatherer and the rains didn’t come and the berries dried up and the deer disappeared, you died.  It’s true regardless of the economic system, feudal, free or state-run.

Since a corollary fundamental is that the more a society produces, the wealthier that society becomes, the question then becomes: which economic system produces the most?  Experience has proven beyond a doubt that the most prosperous economies are free-enterprise economies.  Contrast East and West Germany, North and South Korea, or try to find a Walmart in Cuba.

If everybody looked at the world with this production-then-consumption view, we could avoid a lot of stupid government economic policies. For example, minimum wage laws are very popular but they put the economic cart before the horse.  For example, the purpose of a $15 per hour minimum wage is to ensure that workers can consume $15 worth of goods for each hour they work. However, if they can’t produce $15 per hour, they won’t have a job. Period.

In common sense language, you can’t be paid more than you earn. Seen in that light, minimum wage laws don’t make economic sense.  Such laws are widely blamed for dramatic increases in teenage unemployment over the last 70 years, but minimum wage laws are “feel good” and emotional. Facts don’t matter,

The same could be said of capital gains taxes, which reduce the capital of successful investors, precisely the group society should want to have more capital to invest. Why? Because private investors are much better investors than government bureaucrats.

Here’ an analogy to ponder. Imagine we are bench-sitters on a basketball team starring Michael Jordan and Larry Bird. Who do you want to see taking shots, those two guys or the referees?  Do we really want to take capital away from people like Steve Jobs, founder of Apple, and Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, and put that money in the hands of government officials?

Unfortunately, that’s precisely what some people want to do. The accumulation of private wealth is offensive to their egalitarian sensibilities, even though such wealth was earned fair and square, not a penny stolen from anybody. From a legal standpoint, that’s also true for Chicago janitors retiring on $100,000 per year, presidents of marginal New Mexico universities making over $300,000 per year, or managers of tiny New Mexican cities being paid $100,000 per year, and on and on and on.

Libertarians have a cute little phrase, “taxation is theft,” technically inaccurate but morally apt in all too many cases.  I notice that those who would penalize Bezos don’t seem to have any problem with overpaid government workers.

I do, because I don’t have any choice in the matter, but I’m OK with Bezos becoming the world’s first trillionaire. I buy a lot of stuff from Amazon, and I watch ‘Bosch’ on Amazon Prime. Thanks, Jeff, for enriching this bench-sitter’s life, you stupid liberal.

(Note to economic geeks: All of the above can be interpreted as a version of Say’s Law, from the 18-Century Frenchman Jean Baptiste Say, who famously noted; “Products are paid for with products.” This is another way of saying that the essence of all economic activity is barter, your pig for my cow, etc. The invention of currency both greatly increased economic efficiency and stared to complicate things. ‘Produce before consume’ is nice and simple. Even I can understand it.)   

 

Being Mao-for-a-day

Being Mao-for-a-day by Peter Burrows 4/30/20 elburropete@gmail.com – silvercityburro.com 

Over the years, Thomas Friedman, the renowned New York Times columnist, has fantasized about America being “China for a day,” because then “— we could actually authorize the right solutions, on everything from the economy to the environment.” (Meet the Press, 5/23/10) 

By “authorize” he means “dictate,” and by “right solutions” he means what HE thinks are the right solutions. That’s a little redundant. Friedman’s solutions are obviously the “right” solutions because they’re Friedman’s solutions.  

What Friedman is really saying is that since China is a dictatorship, he, Tom Friedman, would like to be dictator for day, and who was China’s iconic dictator? Why, Mao Zedong, who modernized Chinese agriculture with his “right solutions.”  A few people had to die – 40 to 50 million – but they were just ordinary people, not gifted visionaries like Mao and Friedman.    

I believe Friedman first expressed his Mao-for-a-day dream in a highly acclaimed book he wrote in 2008, “Hot, Flat, and Crowded.” There was a chapter, “China For A Day,” in which the focus of his fantasies was dictating what we would today call the Green New Deal: “–imposing all the right taxes, regulations and standards needed to launch a clean power system in one day.” 

Here are some of the reviews Friedman’s book received, downloaded from Amazon:  

“A convincing case for the green revolution required to rescue us from an unsustainable course.”–USA Today; “He gets the big issues right.”–The Washington Post; “A compelling manifesto that deserves a wide reading, especially by members of Congress.”–The Boston Globe; “If Friedman’s profile and verve take his message where it needs to be heard, into the boardrooms of America and beyond, that can only be good–for all our sakes.”–The New York Times Book Review 

This was back in 2008, and since then Germany has pretty much done what Friedman recommended to achieve a clean power system. By 2025 Germany will have spent $580 billion on renewable energy and will have reduced fossil fuel use by maybe ten percent. Electricity bills have gone up over 50 percent and will go up a great deal more if the country achieves its goal of 100 percent renewable electric generation by 2050.  

California is having a similar experience with its push for renewables, and New Mexico is about to impoverish itself as it pursues the renewable goals in the recently passed Energy Transition Act.  None of the renewable goals, Germany’s, California’s, New Mexico, wherever, are achievable without self-destructive costs.  

This has been known for quite some time.  Bill Gates once said the cost of 100 percent renewable electricity would be “beyond astronomical.” He also said something to the effect that it would be nice if people would “bring a little math” to the problem.   

In time, I have no doubt the math will prevail, but that will take decades. In the meantime, math has no chance against the emotional appeal of a messianic mission to save humanity. The environmentalists and their useful-idiot lawmakers see themselves engaged a moral crusade to reduce CO2 in the atmosphere. So far, they have been oblivious to the disastrous consequences of their policies.  

That may change.  Michael Moore’s’ new documentary, “Planet of the Humans.,” available for free on You Tube, pulls the plug on renewable energy and exposes some of the villains involved.  Sadly, it doesn’t mention the number one villain: Government. Without mandates and subsidies, the renewable energy industry disappears.   

Still, Moore’s documentary could provide the emotional fervor that is needed to counter the emotional fervor pushing renewables.  Michael Shellenberger, and others, have long made the argument that renewables aren’t going to save the environment, and in fact we must save the environment FROM renewables.  Moore’s documentary dramatizes that fact.  

Unfortunately, Mao-Moore agrees with Mao-Friedman that the world needs drastic action to avoid an inevitable environmental apocalypse. Since green energy is proving to be a bust, the only thing that can save us is population control.  For over 50 years, environmentalists, most notably Paul Ehrlich, have been predicting mass starvations, but those pesky humans keep figuring out new ways to feed themselves.  

The unacceptable result is that they keep multiplying, using up the earth’s resources and in this greed-driven process, are KILLING THE PLANET!  

What would Mao Zedong do to solve this crisis? We know that if Friedman had been Mao-for-a-day, by now we would have needlessly sacrificed even more billions of dollars on the altar of Global Warming. (Always capitalize a religion.)  With Moore as Mao-for-a-day, would that mean that in ten years we will have sacrificed billions of PEOPLE?  Isn’t that what the real Mao would see as “the right solution” to the “problem” of overpopulation?  

The lesson here is twofold. One, people filled with invincible moral and intellectual certitude are almost always WRONG. Two, such people can do a lot of harm if they are in positions of power.  Examples abound, and not just dictatorships. Neville Chamberlain and Angela Merkle come to mind, as well as L. Ron Hubbard, Jim Jones, and any American president who listens to people with the “right” solutions. The list is long. 

That’s not to say that there shouldn’t occasionally be a Mao-for-a-day.  Some potential Maos are in fact morally and intellectually superior people who would do a lot of good, not just on the big stuff, like climate change, but in helping individuals with their personal problems.  

In this regard, Mao-Burro has noticed both Thomas Friedman and Michael Moore are, to put it charitably, a little chunky.  A couple of years helping Cuba harvest sugar cane would do both of them a lot of good, whether they know it or not.  

Well, fellas, Mao-Burro knows, and someday you’ll thank me.  

 

     

    

New Film: “Planet of the Humans.” Watch it!

New Film: “Planet of the Humans.” Watch it!  by Peter Burrows, Libertarian Leanings, 4/22/20 elburropete@gmail.com – silvercityburro.com 

Michael Moore has just posted his latest documentary film, “Planet of the Humans,” on You Tube where you can watch it for free. It’s free because he doesn’t want anything to get in the way of the film’s message: ‘Green’ energy is a disastrous, profit-driven scam. 

It’s an hour and forty minutes long, but it flies by.  Like other Moore documentaries, it’s very one-sided, but unlike other Moore documentaries, green energy doesn’t have a mitigating “side” to show.  Any way you look at it, green energy, aka renewable energy, is an economic waste that does more environmental harm than good.  

The film takes on the big three, wind, solar and biomass, and devastates them all, especially biomass. Along the way, it also devastates a few leading environmentalists, most notably Al Gore and the Sierra Club.  It asks if the green energy pushers are delusional, ignorant, or something else, and comes up with something else, namely they’re in it for the money.  

A disinterested observer would note that “stupid” was left off the list, but stupid is how the noted environmentalist Bill McKibben comes off, pathetically so, and ‘stupid’ is the only way you can describe people who are only now waking up to the fact that wind and solar power are intermittent and therefore need instantaneous backup power, which ADDS to the cost even after ‘free’ sunshine and wind.   

The film even reveals the arcane fact that electric vehicles are charged by fossil fuels, not solar panels, and that there is no company that runs 100% on wind and solar alone, in spite of what they may claim.  That would also apply to any city that made the same claim, but the documentary is tellingly free of criticizing government at any level.  

That’s the main problem I have with the film. The green energy disaster is the result of government policies, not a “cancerous form of capitalism” driven by profits and billionaires who “are not our friends,” as the film claims.    

Nowhere does the film cite government mandates, such as renewable portfolio standards and biofuel blending regulations; nowhere does it mention production tax credits for wind producers or tax credits for solar panel makers; nowhere does it mention tax credits for the wealthy consumers who buy Teslas or put solar panels on their homes. 

The bottom line is that without government incentives, there would be no ‘green energy’ industry.  This is as obvious as the fact that solar panels don’t work at night, but liberals like Michael Moore can’t see it. They blame the recipient for taking the government subsidies, not the government for giving the subsidies. Mindboggling, isn’t it? 

The message the film delivers about green energy has been around for a long time, as anybody who has followed Bill Gate or Michael Shellenberger would know. Those two weren’t mentioned in the film, probably because both advocate nuclear energy as the only viable solution to climate change.  The film’s solution: population control.  

Sigh. Just when the film was about to make total sense, it goes Malthusian on us.  This is the no-fault default position of elitists, as witness the success of Paul Ehrlich, who has been predicting food shortages and mass starvation for years, starting with his book, The Population Bomb, published in 1968.  That’s not a typo: 1968. 

Ignore the apocalyptic parts of the film.  The important thing is the fact that an unassailable liberal icon, Michael Moore, has pulled the plug on renewable energy.  Thanks to him, it’s possible the entire renewable energy push will be questioned, perhaps even ended, not just in America, but around the world.  

Michael Moore has a much better chance to do that than somebody like Bill Gates, a calm guy who throws facts around. Michael Moore is a self-righteous raging bull who throws bombs around, especially “f” bombs. You disagree with him, he’ll get in your face and bellow.  Maybe that’s what it takes.  

Stay tuned folks. This is going to get VERY interesting.  

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zk11vI-7czE 

  

   

Mail-in Ballots? No thanks

Mail-in Ballots? No thanks by Peter Burrows 4/17/20 elburropete@gmail.com – silvercityburro.com 

The New Mexico Supreme Court last Tuesday unanimously rejected a petition by New Mexico Democrats to hold the upcoming June 2 primary entirely by mail.  The Court authorized ballot APPLICATIONS to be sent to all registered voters, but not ballots. The distinction is important, because applications require voter signatures and address verifications. 

 If the Court would have approved the Democrats’ request, I have no doubt the next step would have been mail-in ballots for all statewide elections, not just primaries. That would have opened a Pandora’s Box of problems, not the least of which would be the opportunity to steal elections. Democrats are quick to claim there is no evidence of voter fraud here in New Mexico, but that is simply not true. For examples, Google the following:   

-Espanola vote fraud 

Torres-small vote fraud 

-Public interest legal foundation new mexico voter registration  

In general, while both Republicans and Democrats have been guilty of stealing elections, it’s the Democrats who are really good at it. They do so with a clear conscience because they believe that government is a force for good, Since Democrats are morally superior people, they are therefore the best people to be in charge of the government. If it takes voter fraud to win elections, it’s for the good of the country. (1)  

That explains why Democrats always advocate for anything that makes voting easier, and oppose anything that makes voting a verified act by a living citizen, done once.  The idea of a special voting ID, such as Mexico requires, is opposed as racist “voter suppression.”   

True to form, the Coronovirus pandemic has inspired not just New Mexico Democrats, but also Democrats in Washington. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has proposed Federal laws that would require every state to allow mail-in voting, same day registration, 30 days of early voting, and a sworn statement of identity instead of a voter ID. Gosh, what could go wrong?  

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has joined the parade and wants vote-by-mail for the upcoming presidential election: “A voter gets a ballot with a postage-paid return envelope. They vote, they sign it, and they send it back. It’s easy to vote by mail,”  

“It’s easy to vote by mail.” Really? In fact, national vote-by-mail would be enormously difficult and would need years to implement. It isn’t as simple as absentee ballot voting, where a ballot is requested by a registered voter.  This ProPublica article is a good accounting of the problems:    

https://www.propublica.org/article/voting-by-mail-would-reduce-coronavirus-transmission-but-it-has-other-risks  

While voting by mail has a number of advantages, such as convenience and higher voter turnout, especially in local elections, whether it saves money is debatable.  Printing and mailing costs can be substantial and may be in addition to normal polling place expenses.    

What is not debatable is the potential to steal elections. Charles Stewart, who studies election administration at MIT, said “The consensus among people who study fraud carefully is that voting by mail is a much more fertile area for fraud than voting in person.” He was referring to absentee ballots. Imagine if all the ballots were mail-in.  

J.Christian Adams, president of the Public Interest Legal Foundation, said, “Absentee ballot fraud is the most common the most expensive to investigate, and can never be reversed after an election. The status quo was already bad for mail balloting. The proposed emergency fix is worse.” 

That’s because ballots would be mailed to every registered voter, and voter registration records are notoriously inaccurate. Nationwide, the Government Accountability Institute estimates that there are 24 million inaccurate or ineligible voter registrations, including 2 million dead voters and nearly three million registered in more than one state.   

 As an aside, I have never heard of an initiative, anywhere in the country, by the Democrat Party to clean up the voter registration lists.  It’s always the Republicans who want accurate voter rolls. Why is that?  

You may be surprised to know that in the 2016 Presidential election, 21 percent of the votes were already mail-in votes, and that there are five states that allow voting by mail for all elections, including federal elections.   Four of the five states, Oregon, Washington, Colorado and Hawaii, were won by Hillary Clinton and one, Utah, by Donald Trump. The camel’s nose is in the tent, folks.     

While Presidential elections should be the most difficult to steal thanks to the Electoral College, it only takes a key state or two to do the trick, e.g., Illinois swung the 1960 election to JFK thanks to widespread voter fraud in Chicago, and disputed votes in Florida almost swung the 2000 election to Al Gore.  With mail-in voting, it won’t take the Democrats long before the swing states of Florida, Pennsylvania and Ohio join New York, California and Illinois as permanent Democrat strongholds.   

In addition, Democrats want to expand the number of eligible voters, most notably by reducing the voting age to 16.  You may not be old enough to purchase a gun, an alcoholic drink, or a cigarette, but you’re old enough to vote for a Democrat. They would also allow voting by felons, even if still in prison, and voting by both legal and illegal aliens.  Do it all by mail, and Democrats will soon control congress and enough states to be able to change the Constitution in any way they please.  

Some of you are thinking, “All that from mail-in voting, Burro?” Well, it’s a start and we shouldn’t allow it to happen.  

(1) There are a number of books about Democrats stealing elections, but none that I could find about Republicans doing the same. On Amazon, you will find the following books: “Stealing Elections,” by John Fund; “Who’s Counting?” by John Fund and Hans Von Spakovsky; “If it isn’t close, they can’t steal it” by Hugh, Hewitt; and “Fraud” by Eric Eggers. 

 

Verily, It is Written: “He who does not work, neither shall he eat.”

Verily, It Is Written: “He who does not work, neither shall he eat” by Peter Burrows, elburropete@gmail.com – silvercityburro.com 4/1/20 

“He who does not work, neither shall he eat.” I bet some of you progressives are thinking, “Old Burro is showing his Evangelical roots, quoting some Biblical parable to justify Trump’s latest effort to take food stamps away from millions of able-bodied Democrats who can’t find dignified, living wage jobs with the government.”  

No, I didn’t find that little cautionary aphorism in the Bible.  Take another guess.  

“Hmmm.  Sounds like something from the Republican Party National Platform.  Just what you’d expect from Republicans. No compassion for the poor! They’d let people starve in the streets. One more reason we need Bernie! Food justice, baby, food justice! Food is a right! FREE food is a right!” 

Sorry, wrong again. The line is from the 1936 Constitution of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. From Article 12: “In the U.S.S.R. work is a duty and a matter of honour for every able-bodied citizen, in accordance with the principle: ‘He who does not work, neither shall he eat.’” 

It should come as no surprise that in the Workers’ Paradise “work is a duty and a matter of honour.” What is surprising is that part about “neither shall he eat.” That doesn’t seem to jibe with what Karl Marx famously said would be the denouement of Communism: “From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs!” 

I think we can all agree that there is no more basic “need” than the need to eat. In fairness to Marx, this utopian state would occur only when the basic goodness and generosity of people were freed from bourgeois selfishness. Here’s what Marx wrote: 

“ —after labor has become not only a means of life but life’s prime want; after the productive forces have also increased with the all-around development of the individual, and all the springs of co-operative wealth flow more abundantly—only then can the narrow horizon of bourgeois right be crossed in its entirety and society inscribe on its banners: From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs!” 

In essence, after Communism has abolished private property, nobody will work for exploiting capitalists. Everyone will work for themselves and people will WANT to work more than anything else in life. The result will be an abundance of production, the “cooperative wealth” which will flow to those who need it.  

Marx thought that eventually no government would be needed to enforce this emergent “from-to” benevolence of humanity. Some of you may think that’s obviously absurd, that Marx had no inkling about human nature.  

It was worse than that. Marx thought human nature could be changed, indeed, would change, if only people were ruled by the right kind of government. Of course, people would need lots of reeducation, lots of RULING before they were perfected.  

While this was going on, the Dictatorship of the Proletariat would determine the real “needs” of people as opposed to what people thought were their “needs.” After all, is there anything more subjective than “needs”?  

More ominously, the Dictatorship of the Proletariat would also determine what abilities people had. For example, a commissar would immediately see that a talentless soul such as myself has the ability to dig ditches, pick up garbage, whatever, even though I may not have known I had such abilities.    

And if I didn’t work as ordered? In theory, that’s where “neither shall he eat” kicks in.  In practice, workers who went on strike in the Workers’ Paradise of the U.S.S.R. were simply shot. That’s a lot quicker than starvation, although millions of people also starved to death in Russia, something happening now in Venezuela.  

I wonder if Bernie Sanders, who honeymooned in Russia in 1988, would stick to Marx’s utopian ideal or if Bernie would agree with the practical change that Stalin made to socialist doctrine. If old Bernie goes with Uncle Joe, we should expect some changes, or at least some qualifications, to calls for more food stamps, higher minimum wages or demands for a “living wage” law.  

Here is the rest of Article 12 from the 1936 Constitution of the U.S.S.R quoted above.  Observant readers will note the slight change Stalin made to Marx’s glorious nonsense: 

“The principle applied in the U.S.S.R. is that of socialism: From each according to his ability, to each according to his work.”