Category Archives: News

Elections Matter

“We have always known that eternal vigilance is the price of freedom. It’s worse now, because capture of government is so much more important than it once was. There was a time when there was enough freedom that it hardly mattered which brand of crooks ran government. That has not been true for a long time — not during most of your lifetimes, and for much of mine — and it will probably never be true again.” — Jerry Pournelle

More Reed on today’s reporters

“Journalists are not stupid, running to well above average in intelligence. You could form a large chapter of Mensa by raiding newsrooms in Washington. However, with a fair few exceptions, they are not intellectuals, not contemplative, not studious. They are high-pressure fact-accountants, competitive, comfortable under tight deadlines, aggressive, combative, quick but shallow. This can be a serviceable substituent for stupid.” — Fred Reed

Otherworldly Twits

“Do you wonder why the legacy media are such puzzled otherworldly twits? Why, for example, they had no idea what was happening in the recent election? Why they seem to know so very little about America or much of anything else?

“Some thoughts from a guy who spent a career in the racket:

“Ask journalists when they were last in a truck stop on an Interstate, last in Boone, North Carolina or Barstow, California or any of thousands of such towns across the country. Ask whether they were in the military, whether they have ever talked to a cop or an ambulance crewman or a fireman. Ask whether they have a Mexican friend, when they last ate in a restaurant where a majority of the customers were black. Whether they know an enlisted man, or anyone in the armed services. Whether they have hitchhiked overnight, baited a hook, hunted, or fired a rifle. Whether they have ever worked washing dishes, harvesting crops, driving a delivery truck. Whether they have a blue-collar friend. Know what the Texas Two-Step is, have been in a biker bar.

“Now do you see why Trump surprised them?” — Fred Reed

If You Don’t Read Books

“…the most suggestive thing I saw in America the past 18 months I actually think of an item in a hotel gift shop in southern Florida. It was a decorative kitchen towel, I think made locally. It bore these words: ‘America, 2016.’ Below that it said, ‘Once we had Steve Jobs, Johnny Cash and Bob Hope. Now they’re gone, and we’re outta jobs, outta cash and outta hope. And below that it said, “Please Kevin Bacon, don’t die.”” — Peggy Noonan, at the Catholic University Commencement

Clever line, but what’s it got to do with reading? Well, follow the link and read the rest of her remarks – it’s worth it!

Let Them Paste Passwords!

The British NCSC agrees with yours truly that those websites who prevent you, me and everyone else from pasting passwords (or using browser plug-ins that do it for us) in the name of “security” are in fact undermining security. I’m not always a fan of NCSC, but on this one they’re 100% right on.

Read the report here.

A little good sense

“It is said that there is a technical term for people who believe that little boys and little girls are born indistinguishable and are molded into their natures by parental socialization. The term is ‘childless.'” — Steven Pinker

Secrecy

“The very word “secrecy” is repugnant in a free and open society; and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret oaths and to secret proceedings. We decided long ago that the dangers of excessive and unwarranted concealment of pertinent facts far outweighed the dangers which are cited to justify it. Even today, there is little value in opposing the threat of a closed society by imitating its arbitrary restrictions. Even today, there is little value in insuring the survival of our nation if our traditions do not survive with it.” — John F. Kennedy

Needles

“Frankly, I don’t think you could have driven a needle up my sphincter using a sledgehammer.” — Col. Barry Horne, F-117 pilot, on first mission over Baghdad

Censorship – Come meet the new boss…

…the same as the old boss.

* “AT present, it is not we that silence the Press; it is the Press that silences us. It is not a case of the Commonwealth settling how much the editors shall say; it is a case of the editors settling how much the Commonwealth shall know.” (Illustrated London News, Oct. 19, 1907)

* “BUT the modern editor regards himself far too much as a kind of original artist, who can select and suppress facts with the arbitrary ease of a poet or a caricaturist.” (ILN, Oct. 26, 1907)

* “THE frivolous chatter is now all in public journalism.” (ILN, Feb. 1908)

* “THERE is no fear that a modern king will attempt to override the constitution: it is more likely that he will ignore the constitution and work behind its back. He will take no advantage of his kingly power: it is more likely that he will take advantage of his kingly powerlessness — of the fact that he is free from criticism and publicity. For the King is the most private person of our time. It will not be necessary for anyone to fight against the proposal of a censorship of the Press. We do not need a censorship of the Press. We have a censorship by the Press.” (Orthodoxy, 1908)

* “THE new method of journalism is to offer so many comments or, at least, secondary circumstances that there is actually no room left for the original facts.” (ILN, Nov. 6, 1909)

* “IT is by this time practically quite impossible to get the truth out of newspapers, even the honest newspapers.” (ILN, Jan. 23, 1909)

* “AND the papers are shouting louder and louder like demagogues, merely because their hearers are growing more and more deaf.” (ILN, Dec. 8, 1928)

* “WHAT I protest against is the prevailing fashion, in the Press and elsewhere, of parading all this perfectly natural indifference and ignorance as if it were a sort of impartiality.” (ILN, Apr. 12, 1930)

~G.K. Chesterton