Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. COVID-19 and the ‘No Trust’ Election

 

When I read commentary in local matters associated with the COVID-19 epidemic, I am struck by the total breakdown in trust of authority. Our county was doing a pretty good job of communicating information about the local epidemic but lately, as cases rise again, they have failed in basic communication of relevant information. Or, when they provide relevant information, the actions of authorities seem to ignore the fundamental realities to which such information points. This is a breach of trust, and the consequences flowing forward are unclear.

My county is imposing greater restrictions than previously: in-person church is being banned again; masks are supposed to be worn in outdoor restaurants except when consuming food, masks are to be worn in extended-family gatherings. Mind you, I don’t think masks have become more effective than before. People who were exempt from wearing masks are now asked to weak face shields with cloth lining.

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Quote of the Day: She Is Squeezing My Hand!

 

My Mother’s Home
“She is squeezing my hand!” R. Buckminster Fuller

Richard Buckminster Fuller would have been 125 years old today. Many know of his works, such as Dymaxion Map, Dymaxion House, or Dymaxion Car, or in promoting the geodesic dome.

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Group Writing: Who’s a Good Doggerel?

 

If you hate poetry — and who doesn’t? — relax, you won’t find a trace of it here. This
post is reserved for poetry’s little brother, doggerel, verse for the common man.

To Bob the Dog: Three Areas Where You Fall Short of Perfection

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. The French Resistance and German Defiance at the Liberation of Paris

 

Billy Boyle was a detective in the Boston Police Department when the US entered World War II. He came from the stereotypical cop Irish Catholic family. His family mistrusted the English. His father and uncle wanted him to serve their country, but want him safe. To do this they get Billy a posting with Uncle Ike, an obscure brigadier general, assigned to the General Staff in Washington, DC.

“When Hell Struck Twelve: A Billy Boyle WWII Mystery,” by James Benn, is the fourteenth novel about the results of this pairing.

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Irrational and Driven by Fear

 

Once upon a time on Ricochet, I argued, repeatedly, in the words of Heinlein, “Man is not a rational animal. Man is a rationalizing animal.” I have pointed out countless times that people are governed more by their fears and insecurities than by their hopes and ambitions. Every time, I ran into staunch opposition, especially from self-described rational people.

This post is just to jump and down and scream, “See! I Wuz Right!” I think the events of the past few months have illustrated both of these primary points better than a thousand articles could have done. There are now countless posts and comments on this site (and everywhere, really), arguing that while precaution X, Y and Z may not make sense, we have to accept that the terrifying unknown trumps all logical argument.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Trump Speed

 

President Trump and his administration are running at “Trump speed.” This Friday, as the Supremes ending their annual tour, with a finale on tax records that is no Beatles hit, the White House thanked the court in passing. The administration also found time to court Hispanic American voters, all families with school-age children, veterans, and women in need, while backing the blue.

Statement from the Press Secretary
LAW & JUSTICE Issued on: July 9, 2020

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. One Man, One Woman

 

I am a traditionalist and I seem to find myself in a tiny minority. Sometimes it feels like a minority of one, though I know that there must be a few others who share my views.

There has been a tremendous Leftward shift in many public attitudes over the past 20 years or so, with homosexuality being one of the most notable changes. I have been shocked and mystified by this shift. Within my adult lifetime, we’ve gone from widespread condemnation of homosexuality itself to widespread condemnation of opposition to homosexuality. This seems to have happened even on the political Right, among people who consider themselves conservatives, including many of you, dear readers.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Swimming the Bosporus, Chapter 3: The Slough of Despond

 

As noted in my last post, I was officially disillusioned with megachurchdom. My family was understandably tired of trying different communities, so it was time to strike out on my own, Lone Ranger style. Since I didn’t care about the music or the surface-level social interaction, I’d just listen to great preachers on podcasts and online. Get the good word from the big names and avoid the stuff I didn’t like. (Which included waking up before Noon.)

This went okay for a while. Friends told me about liturgical Protestant options, which definitely drew my interest. But the closest option was a tiny place 30 miles away and the family wasn’t down.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Run, Martha, Run!

 

Martha,

Since your latest fundraising mailer invites me to first name you, and since you keep going back your retired military rank, let’s talk retired colonel to retired colonel. I wrote to you in June by your official email, USPS, and here, where your staff should certainly be scanning for mentions. Now I am writing via your campaign, and documenting the communication publicly so any real media and Republican Party staff can note the issue and engage your campaign. Time is extremely short, but a ground attack pilot should be able to get inside the DNC OODA loop.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. My Kingdom for a Safe Zone: Kids Playdates Edition

 

Several weeks before COVID hit, I decided to get serious about getting my (homeschooled) kids more playdates and getting them out in nature more. There was a conversation in a local branch of a nature-based national playgroup organization about looking for a homeschool meetup and I decided it was perfect: I would start one. We had exactly two gatherings in the woods before they were canceled indefinitely due to the pandemic. I remained in a number of the Facebook groups dedicated to the national organization and our local branch and soon watched them become arms of BLM after the killing of George Floyd.

 

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Peanut Butter Crackers, Gunsmoke, and His Rubix Cube: In Search of My Grandfather

 

Growing up, I only had one grandparent. My mom’s mother, who, for a variety of reasons, my dad wished to largely keep my sister and I away from, and who died when I was 7. I’m never quite sure of how much this difference from others my age affected me; on the one hand, there was little point in pining after something I had never had, but that didn’t always mean that seeing my peers bring grandparents to every significant school occasion, and excitedly report on all of the neat adventures they got to go on with them, didn’t sometimes rankle. That vague feeling of a missed connection has waned over the years, as I was lucky enough to be kind of informally ‘adopted’ by one of my best friend’s maternal grandfather, and to have been given a second family in a community of (mostly 50 and over) Benedectine monks. Still, questions linger, questions that I didn’t really feel comfortable posing to my parents past a certain age. 

Most of them centered around my paternal grandfather, Charlie. My dad was always full of stories about his mother, who he compared to me (when I maybe wasn’t meant to be there) in terms of devotion and bullheadedness to his siblings, and the little aquatinace that I had with my maternal grandmother didn’t really leave me wanting more. My mom’s dad, meanwhile, had passed in the late ‘70s, and seemed a distant, somewhat painful memory even to her. Charlie, though, existed as a kind of aura around my dad’s stories, a cheerful and mischievous but indistinct presence who bore 7 kids and 50 something years of marriage with equanimity and good humor. The most I concretely knew about him was that he drove my grandmother crazy playing with a Rubix cube at the dinner table, ate peanut butter crackers by the thousands, and died a few months before I was born.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. I Was a Teenage Cancel Mob

 

I completed my last two years of high school in a small Christian boarding school on the Canadian prairies. The school was affiliated with a larger Bible college, and every day, we students trudged out of our dorms for 45 minutes of chapel, along with three hours of church services and at least one Bible class each semester.

In short, it was a great place to learn spiritual orthodoxy, but not a great place for intellectual curiosity.

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Beware the Pattys, Not the Karens

 

From Casey Chalk’s piece at CRISIS Magazine, We Are All Karens Now:

The French philosopher Simone Weil wrote, “The fact that a human being possesses an eternal destiny imposes only one obligation: respect.” As Catholics, we are called to see people as individuals, created in the image of God, who are worthy of love and respect. “Human persons are willed by God; they are imprinted with God’s image. Their dignity does not come from the work they do, but from the persons they are,” wrote Saint John Paul II in Centesimus annus

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. About That ‘No One Is Above the Law’ Nonsense…

 

I can only imagine the immense collective power that resides in [the still anonymous] Clients #1 through #8

On the surface, this (via Drudge) is the type of headline that would have many a sphincter quite puckered in many scattered social and political enclaves (and even a castle or two) around the western world:

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Hey BLM, Do These Lives Matter? The Ongoing Persecution of Christians Worldwide

 

In Nigeria and across the Lake Chad/Sahel region of Africa, the persecution of Christians by Islamist extremist groups, including Boko Haram and the Fulani, has escalated to “genocidal massacres,” according to the group “Genocide Watch.” In just the last three years, more than 7,000 Nigerian Christians have been killed, which is more than the total number of Christians killed by ISIS in both Iraq and Syria. Islamist groups, well armed and financed, have pledged their allegiance to both ISIS and Al Qaeda across Africa, from Burkina Faso, Mali, Chad and even into Ethiopia.

So writes Fr. Benedict Kiely, a Catholic priest and the founder of Nasarean.org, a charitable organization aiding and advocating for persecuted Christians.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Quote of the Day: The Rulers

 

“To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize.” – Voltaire

This has never been more true than this summer. We are forced to pretend COVID is deadly, that all lives do not matter, that those that founded this country – a country based on principles of equality and liberty – are scum, but that dictators and mass murderers like Mao, Lenin, and Castro are saints.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Rule of Lawyers II: The Lawyering

 

Quick quiz question: How many current Supreme Court judges can you name?

I’ll give you a moment to consider, but don’t take too long. It’s a trick question; the proper answer ought to be zero. Lady Justice is blind. Traditionally that means justice ought not care about the skin color of the defendant, or their wealth or poverty or anything else. Justice is concerned with the fundamental equality of all men, not accidents of nature or position. However, we ought to be able to run that backward; truly just judges ought to be indistinguishable. So why is it that you not only know the Justices’ names but can lay a wager as to how they’d rule on any given controversy?

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Fairfax County School Curriculum, Cancel Culture, and Why You Should Care

 

I think conservatives are starting to understand – in practical terms – exactly what Andrew Breitbart was getting at when he said “Politics is downstream of culture.”

“Cancel Culture” is the direct result of the Right’s elite class turning up its collective nose at the culture fight. Cultural battles, they sniffed, were a “distraction” from the “real issues” … like reforming the Alternative Minimum Tax.

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Today’s ‘Cultural Revolution’ Looks Very Familiar

 

Those of us of a certain age may remember Chairman Mao Zedong’s “Cultural Revolution” in the People’s Republic of China. Zedong, as you will recall, came to power during the 1949 Communist revolution, sending Chiang Kai-Shek and his army and followers to what is now the Republic of China on Taiwan. Chiang ruled China from 1928 until Zedong fomented his revolution.

Around 1966, as this article outlines, Mao launched his “cultural revolution” to eradicate the country of its old systems (sound familiar, already?) and eradicate remnants of opposition or resistance that still remained in China. It lasted about 10 years, and had a horrific impact – as many as 20 million Chinese died, but no one really knows for sure.

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Taking the Doggerel for a Walk

 

If I had a shiny gun
I could have a world of fun
Putting bullets through the brains
Of all the folks who give me pains.

Or if I had some poison gas
I could make the moments pass
Bumping off a number of
People whom I do not love.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Stand Up for Something

 

Stipulated, I am no poet. Nevertheless, herein I offer a bit of what I understand to be free verse. It seemed to fit the thoughts and feelings of the moment. Doggerel it may be, but the contents, the realities behind the words, have been dogging my thoughts for some time.

Stand up!

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Woke America Runs on Ignorance

 

Woke world is a simple, black-and-white, never-never land of good and evil, oppressors and oppressed. But everything is simple until you know something about it. Binary morality can rarely endure the light of knowledge and understanding.

In a recent column, George Will writes about “our lumpen intelligentsia”:

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Expected Deaths and COVID

 

@misterbitcoin posted a link to the CDC website to point out that the Wuhan Virus is waning. The most interesting number to me is “percent of expected deaths.” What does that mean? Let’s go to the CDC definition:

Percent of expected deaths is the number of deaths for all causes for this week in 2020 compared to the average number across the same week in 2017–2019. Previous analyses of 2015–2016 provisional data completeness have found that completeness is lower in the first few weeks following the date of death (<25%), and then increases over time such that data are generally at least 75% complete within 8 weeks of when the death occurred (8).

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