About Crucis

I'm a retired telecom engineer, life NRA member, Amateur Radio Operator and Air Force vet. I created this blog at the urging of some folks who think I have an occasional thought. A liberal friend once described me as "being just to the right of Atilla the Hun." I thanked her for that description and told her I'd do my best to maintain her expectations.

I’ll pass for today

I’m not sure of the cause, writer’s burnout, repetitive news cycles, general ennui of the population or a constant rehash of issues and events with nothing new added.

Yes, my motivation has fallen with a thud for today. Think I’ll go work on my wife’s printer.

Have a very happy Thanksgiving

Mrs. Crucis and I wish all of you a very Happy Thanksgiving.

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Observations

I’m feeling lazy. I have been scanning the news, peering through old posts, something appropriate to blog about on this pre-Thanksgiving holiday. I’ve not found anything except for this observation.

I attended a meeting last night. A topic was the recent Constitutional Amendments passed this year that enhanced our 2nd Amendment rights in Missouri. Some people persist in stupidity.

A question was asked of our resident attorney. If the Federal and Missouri Constitutions say we have a “right to keep and bear arms, “doesn’t that make concealed carry licensing and restrictions on open carry unconstitutional?”

The person asking the question has been repeating it for months since Amendment 5 to the Missouri Constitution was passed in August. The real answer is, “No.” Not until it is taken to Court and the Court agrees with you.

Don’t like that answer? Well, too bad. It’s reality. The changes to and the enhancement of our rights in our Constitutions are basis for judgment, the foundation that law is ‘supposed’ to be in compliance. Doesn’t mean law will, nor that past law is automatically null-and-void. Not until a Court says so.

So, it you are like the questioner, one who keeps asking the same question hoping that someone will answer in the manner you want, I wouldn’t try ignoring law that doesn’t comply with your worldview—unless you have a barrel of money to defend yourself in court.

It’s done, verdict announced

The Ferguson verdict was announced last night. To no one’s great surprise, Darren Wilson was not charged. In fact, the prosecutor released all the evidence collected, much more than normal, to the media. The evidence was overwhelming. Michael Brown attacked Wilson, not once but twice. Wilson defended himself and shot Brown.

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Violence erupts in Ferguson: Fire, looting, arrests

But that doesn’t make any difference to those who are determined to riot regardless of the verdict. Before the night was over, thirty-one people had been arrested, numerous businesses were looted, a dozen buildings, along with at least two police cars, were burned, and shots were fired. None of those shots were fired by police. All were fired by members of the mob.

Missouri Govenor Jay Nixon sent members, upwards of 1,000, of the National Guard to St. Louis. However, he didn’t release them to quiet the rioting until almost midnight, well after much of the damage had been done.

I should not be but I’m continually amazed at Nixon’s incompetence and stupidity. What Nixon should have done was to deploy those Guard troops around the expected hotspots well before the announcement. With them in place, with orders to stop any looting and burning at first sight. And, if they were fired upon by the mob, to return fire.

For those of you too young to remember the LA riots of the ’60s, rioters and snipers fired upon National Guardsmen from the roofs and upper stories of buildings. The Guard returned fire with vehicle-mounted machine guns. In some cases turning the buildings into sieves. The sniping and rioting quickly stopped.

(I tried to find some links for the Guard responding to the Watts riots, but couldn’t find any that reported the events accurately. I remember those 1965 riots quite well. I was in college at the time taking a modern history class. We analyzed the riots closely. Now, some fifty years later, little can be found on the internet about the riots in Los Angles, the Watts Riots, that hasn’t been tainted with liberal viewpoints. The use of National Guardsmen has been painted as a counter-riot when it was not.

I remember watching live TV when a Guard jeep driving slowly down a street on patrol was taken under fire by several snipers on rooftops. The Guardsmen returned fire using their personal arms and the jeep-mounted machine gun. The sniping quickly ended with the snipers dead or having fled. The rioting ended soon after the arrival of the National Guard. Many of the Guardsmen were also combat veterans.

That real story can’t be found today. It’s been censored by the left.)

The bottom line is that the liberal government of St. Louis and Ferguson, abetted by Governor Jay Nixon, allowed the rioting to happen. Most of the damage was to locally-owned residents of Ferguson, minority owners. The liberal politicians of St. Louis and Jeff City, the leaders who were obligated to act and prevent violence, did nothing.

Al Sharpton and other thugs are on the way to Ferguson. They have no intention of quieting the situation. They will do anything and everything to cause the situation to get worse. The greater the disturbance the more their agenda will be enhanced. If Nixon and the St. Louis Police Chief were smart, they’d meet these thugs at the airport gate and put them on the next plane out from St. Louis to any destination.

But, they won’t. The trouble in Ferguson will continue until someone in authority gets fed up and deals with the situation. In the end, Ferguson will be a burned-out hole in St. Louis County. It will be area where no business will come, where insurance companies will not insure existing businesses and without insurance, no business can survive. Jobs will be lost, more than have already been lost, and Ferguson will turn into another blighted area, with no jobs and no hope of jobs.

In the coming months and years, residents will leave. None of them will return. Ferguson and the surrounding area will turn into another Detroit littered with abandoned buildings amid weeds, debris and crumbling infrastructure.

Why did this happen? Because there exists a culture of self-destruction that is dependent on the largess of government, governments, local, state and federal that really does not care what happens to the residents as long as they vote for democrats, a party that keeps them enslaved. Just look at the history of Detroit for the last fifty years and you will see the future of Ferguson and probably St Louis.

The Ferguson situation isn’t whites oppressing blacks. There are more blacks in Ferguson, by a large majority, than whites. No, the residents of Ferguson chose their government, did it to themselves. There is a lesson there in full display. Few in Ferguson and elsewhere, will learn from it. It isn’t politically correct.

Monday’s Talking Points

Headlines on various news outlets this morning: 

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Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel

Hagel Fired for Contradicting Obama over ISIS threat!

From FOX News…

OBAMA FINDS MIDTERM SCAPEGOAT IN HAGEL
In another strong sign of President Obama’s hard tack left in the wake of a midterm drubbing, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel is heading for the exits. First reported by the NYT, the cashiering of the Pentagon boss comes after “the two men mutually agreed” that it was time for the only Republican in Obama’s cabinet to go. But given the fact that the White House was the one pushing out the story, it seems more likely that the president had grown tired of the ongoing pressure from Hagel and members of the top brass to take a more aggressive stance on national security threats abroad. The conflict went public back in August when Hagel openly contradicted White House talking points on the threat posed by Islamist militants in Iraq and Syria. While Obama succumbed to the pressure, Hagel’s ouster shows the president seeking to reassert control over his foundering foreign policy. — FOX Newsletter, November 24, 2014

Never let it be said that Obama lets anyone on his staff disagree with him. I wonder which hand-puppet will be chosen next for Sec’y of Defense?

***

Rand Paul has been the fair-haired boy of Libertarians and the Paulbot wing of the GOP. He has been viewed as an opponent of the GOP Washington establishment. When Ted Cruz and Mike Lee stood up in opposition to Harry Reid, and occasionally Mitch McConnell, Rand Paul stood in the background giving the impression of supporting Cruz and Lee but seldom actually doing so on the floor of the Senate.

I’ve never trusted Rand Paul. In my view, he is too much like his Dad—inconsistent, a bit unstable with a tin-foil hat firmly in place. My view, again, has been vindicated. The reports today have Rand Paul cozing up to Mitch McConnell, worming his way into the establishment and the Ruling Class.

Paul strengthens McConnell ties with fundraiser hire – National Review: “[Sen.] Rand Paul [R-Ky.] is bringing on [Sen.] Mitch McConnell’s [R-Ky.] national finance director, Laura Sequeira, to play a key fundraising role at his political-action committee ahead of an expected 2016 presidential campaign.”

[Flashback: “We’ve developed a very tight relationship, and I’m for him…I don’t think he’s made a final decision on that. But he’ll be able to count on me.” – Senate Majority Leader-elect Mitch McConnell in a post-election interview.] — FOX Newsletter, November 24, 2014.

McConnell, immediately following the election, betrayed the GOP by publicly stating the Senate would not use the only real weapons of Congress against a rogue President—impeachment and removal from office, and the power of the purse—defunding Obama’s acts of defiance to Congress and strictures of the Constitution. When asked what McConnell would do to oppose Obama, McConnell, in essence, said he’d rollover and do nothing. That allows Obama to continue his lawless edicts without opposition…and now Rand Paul will help McConnell to do…nothing.

***

I have been called, on occasion, a Grammar-Nazi. I accept that label. Why is grammar necessary, and spelling, too? Because correct grammar and spelling enhances communication and decreases confusion and misunderstanding.

It is a failing of education when schools no longer teach grammar, sentence structure and construction, spelling and writing. Not cursive hand-writing, although that should be taught, too, but writing as in Writing an Essay. Clear, concise writing, with proper sentence and paragraph structure, is fading. Others agree with me.

Descriptive versus Prescriptive: Another Left-Wing Scam

By Bruce Deitrick Price, November 24, 2014

Everywhere we look, we’ve got pompous professors telling us they don’t dare prescribe what’s right in language.  No, no, no, no.  It’s not their role.  Nor yours either, that’s for sure.  People can express themselves as they wish.  It’s America, the 21st century.  God forbid we should tell anybody how to do anything.“Weird Al” Yankovic put out a popular video called “Word Crimes.”  It’s gotten almost 20,000,000 views.  In effect, he says: “Hey, moron, do it the right way.”  He got everybody talking about correct grammar.  Boy, we needed that.  Thanks, Weird Al.

Naturally, all the primly pontificating nuisances crawled out of the woodwork to tell us: hey, stop all that prescribing!  You can only describe. 

And why?  Because when anthropologists go in the jungle to study a primitive culture, they must remember that the natives are the experts on their own language.  Great.  That’s fine and dandy.  But that has nothing to do with how we should deal with our own language. In our case, you ask the relevant experts (teachers, novelists, journalists), average the answers, and that’s probably a good guide.  But you certainly don’t listen to left-wing scam artists telling you that our experts are not allowed to speak, because anything they say would be prescriptive, and we don’t allow that when we go into the jungle on anthropological expeditions.  Doesn’t this sophistry almost make your head spin?

But look again, and it turns out there is a second sophistry on top of the first one.  These discussions about natives, experts, and ourselves casually presuppose that we are talking about adults.  But many times, without ever acknowledging it, the discussion shifts over to school and the teaching of children.  Isn’t it obvious that the freedom you might give to adults is not appropriately given to children?

In other words, when liberal sophisticates start discussing this issue, they always pose it in terms of freedom, creativity, self-expression, laissez-faire, do your own thing, and gather ye rosebuds while ye may.  Sure, if you insist, adults can wear clothes inside-out and stay drunk.  Let’s not waste time discussing it.  If you want to arrange your sentences backward and break every grammatical rule, go for it.

What we’re discussing now is what’s appropriate in the early grades at school.  Teaching is typically prescriptive, and that’s how it should be.  Schools should teach the right ways to do things.  (This approach has got to be far more efficient than what many public schools are now doing: teach no ways at all, or teach all the ways as if none is preferable.) 

Bottom line, what newspapers call Standard English should be taught first.  That seems to be what our left-wing professors are eager to stop.

So what are the pros and cons?  Do you let a child do anything the child wants?  Are you doing children a favor if you allow them to go out with dirty faces or raggedy clothes?  Isn’t it foolish to pretend that children live and learn in a vacuum?

It seems to be common sense and common decency to tell children what is typically done.  With regard to language, this might require explaining regional variations, work-related slang, and even class differences.  Most children can understand these ideas at a fairly young age.  They probably already speak a different way with their friends from how they do with their parents.

To pretend that all these nuances don’t exist is the opposite of teaching.  To pretend that everything is equally acceptable is a nasty sort of nihilism.

Question is, why are liberals so eager to drown children in permissiveness and relativism?  Who is being served?  Just recently reports came out about a Chicago school that was teaching anal sex to fifth-graders.  And this would be for whose benefit?  The children’s?  No, this is surely liberals trying to break down the last barriers.

Presumably we’re seeing that same worldview when schools refuse to teach grammar.  The point, always, is power – in this case, the power to make the rules.  That’s why the left always maneuvers to control language, semantics, and education.

The sophistry prohibiting prescriptive grammar is not about grammar at all.  It’s about the left being able to tell everybody else how to talk, and how to think.  (Note that the anti-prescriptive diktat is itself prescriptive.)

Liberals always want to play their ideological games, using kids as guinea pigs.  If you don’t tell the kids what the prevailing rules are, the kids will be left in an intellectual wasteland.  To excuse this, you have a whole Education Establishment boldly proclaiming that whatever little children say is just fine, whatever it is.  No rules, guessing, and invented spelling – that’s what elementary education is for many.

But how can they justify all this logically?  Well, some genius thought, why don’t we just bring back anthropological field work to our own society?  We’ll announce (and argue with great indignation) that professional authors, English professors, and smart citizens who have used the language expertly for a lifetime have absolutely no special standing.  They should shut up, lest they be guilty of the crime of prescription.  The left has gotten away with this fluff for 75 years.

Aren’t you tired of left-wing professors using lame sophistries to dumb down the schools and the society?  Here’s a plan: don’t accept lame sophistries.

Sophistry. That’s a word I’ve not seen for a long, long time. Truthfully, now, how many of you know what it means? Don’t know? Here’s the definition. If you and your children don’t know, it’s a good topic for teaching both of you.

soph·ist·ry
ˈsäfəstrē/
noun
noun: sophistry
  1. the use of fallacious arguments, especially with the intention of deceiving.

In the doghouse

Well, I expect I’m on the outs with some friends. We’ll all get over it in a week or so but it was an issue of conscience. Organizations, like society as a whole, evolve. That evolution applies to organizations, too.

One of those changes appeared at a meeting last night. The leadership acted, “as we’ve always done,” unilaterally, on a project. That did not go well with many, perhaps most of the attendees. The organization has many new members. Business practices, as it has been, will no longer suffice. No one objected to the goal. What I and others did object to was the methods chosen to reach that goal—methods that did not include any input from the membership.

I made my opinions known. Some other members and some of those in the leadership, didn’t appreciate my views. But, as I said above, we’ll get over it and move on. But a notice has been given. The world has evolved. Organizations will too.

No Post today

My new router is giving me problems. It is locking up.

** Sigh **

Back to my backup which has problems, too, but I’m returning the new router while I can for a refund. I love Amazon’s liberal return policy.