Inept Climate Change enthusiasts abounding

Confession, or transparency declaration or personal bias alert. One of my jobs in the early part of my working life was on Fishing Trawlers out of Lowestoft in England. For nearly two years I worked in the North Sea and North Atlantic as a second engineer for East Coast Fisheries and I saw a lot of fish and endured some of the worst working conditions I ever experienced. Would not change that experience for anything.

I wish to discuss one of the greatest ecological disasters of our times. The loss of an entire inland sea – The Aral Sea. And what caused it.

I also wish to point out the total uselessness of the IPCC and all the “climatologists” throughout the world who seem all consumed with talking about things that may or may not happen in the far future but who lack any sort of credibility in handling issues in the here and the now.

Just before 1960 The Central government of the USSR decided that the waters of two major rivers, The Amu Darya and the Syr Darya would be diverted for agricultural irrigation.

The Aral Sea was a large, salt water lake. It lay between Kazakhstan in the north and Uzbekistan in the south. It was approximately 270 miles north to south and 180 miles from east to west. As those figures indicate it was a substantial body of water, all the more remarkable because it was located in a desert type terrain.

The local rainfall was nowhere near enough to replenish what the Sea lost in evaporation each year. Its main sources of supply were the two large rivers.

It had a large and productive fishing industry on its shores, big villages and towns. Hence my empathy for those that lived and made their businesses and their families there.

When the Soviet planners decided to create agriculture where it did not belong it decided to irrigate using the waters of the two rivers. One of the crops they picked was one crop that required copious amounts of water – cotton. The other was mainly wheat. That decision basically turned off the spigot that was keeping the Aral sea in existence and, from 1960 onward it started to evaporate – to dry up and become an alkali desert.

Here is a graphic from that shows the incredibly shrinking of this huge resource.

The incredible shrinking lake

Once the shrinking began there followed a cascade of predictable bad effects – the salinity of the sea exploded killing off the copious fish stocks that existed for millennia. As the sea bed started to be exposed the crystallized salts and alkalis and remnants of large amounts of fertilizer started to be blown in the dry winds causing health problems in the surrounding countries. Thousands were thrown out of work, businesses vanished.

There have been attempts to save the Sea, an effort and a dam in the northern small portion that is left seems to have kept that part of the lake in place but negotiations between countries on water usage got nowhere and as time has gone on the chances of reviving this once magnificent resource grow smaller and smaller.

Lest we lose track of something here – this is not something that is a “result of climate change” it is a result of centralized thinking causing issues that RESULT in changing the local climate. And, it would appear, that for all the hot air about “handling climate change” the IPCC and the hundreds of thousands of people who are making a living with the subject of climate change cannot even manage to get five local national governments together to come up with a realistic and workable solution to a “relatively simple” ecological and climatalogical problem. They can , however release multiple scaremongering reports, they can hold massive conferences at which nothing is fixed or decided, they can talk, pass laws, increase taxes – and none of it handles anything.

How about we demand that they actually prove that something can be done and done successfully before we start giving them the keys to the kingdom ad its treasury?

These are the people who claim to be able to handle things 100 years in the future!!

Think about it for a moment. Demand proof, demand accountability.

Power of “Purse” and “Sword”

There are two basic powers in government. The Power of the Purse is one and The Power of the Sword is the other.

One of the big points that the Founding Fathers wrestled with was keeping the Power of the Purse and the Power of the Sword separated in the powers of the government.

Realize that the Founders came from a British tradition and with the Parliamentarian fear of absolute Monarchies. Where the ruler had the absolute right to levy taxes and the absolute power to enforce their collection. A Civil war had been fought and won to separate those two powers.

The Power of the Sword lay with the armed people of the country who were the basis for the militia and who controlled – on a local basis – what laws would and would not be enforced. Please think about that for a moment. No matter who a central authority appoints someone to enforce rules, diktats laws regulations – they cannot do so if the Power of the sword is in the hands of the locals.

When President Trump and the GOP won the elections of 2016 they assumed that the Power of the Purse was enough.

They have now found that they needed to take the Power of the Sword out of the hands of the Deep State like the DoJ and the FBI, the NSA, THE EPA etc.

Sessions needs to remove the people in the DoJ who are not using the Power of the Sword to forward the policies of the President and who are, instead, using that Power to oppose implementation of those policies. They need to be, if not fired = transferred to meaningless jobs without Security Clearances. And the staff need to be instructed to get their jobs done.

The Federal Judiciary needs to be addressed. And the Executive branch needs to act like it has the powers given to it from the Constitution. Like, for example, President Trump wrote an executive order that was totally within his purview and yet it was setaside by a lower federal judge.

Why did the executive branch pay attention to something that was interfering with their legitimate actions? Why was it not just ignored?

Think for a minute. The three branches are co-equal. Trump wrote something that was within the delineated powers of the Presidency. It was not up the Federal Courts to decide whether it was something they liked. Period.

That also means that when the House passes a resolution on how Federal money is to be spent – that is SOLELY their power. Not the Judicial Branch.

Stop being afraid of enforcing the Constitution.

Guns, Yanks, Brits – rights remaining and rights lost

Since I first read “The ‘Nice Girl’ Who Saved the Second Amendment” on the National Review site:

I have been looking and reading and seeking to understand how a “Right To bear Arms” that was a universal right held by both the Colonists in the USA and by the British People in the home country became such a cherished right in the new country and an abolished right in the old.

Some background on me. I was born in England had a pretty good schooling in the classic mode (even had Latin class)and discovered a love of English History which has never left me. Went on to be a bit of a rolling stone (alas the kind that gathers absolutely no moss) working and living in Denmark the US and in various places in Europe.

My wife and I and kids emigrated to the USA, well I should say my wife returned to the USA accompanied by the rag-tag crowd of the rest of us clutching our green cards. I finally became a citizen in 2011 after living here for 21 years (legally I hasten to add).

My love of English history has been joined to a love of American history and particularly those magnificent documents The Declaration of Independence, The Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

Now time for a confession. In my studies of English History my initial period of interest was Roman and Anglo-Saxon and on to the Middle Ages. Like most British people – I think – I absorbed my ideas of modern “rights” through conversations with parents, friends family and so on. Also from reading newspapers, magazines, novels. In short I really did not have much of a clue about things like “free speech” or “right to bear arms” it turns out, of course, that this ignorance is a) common and b) disastrous.

About the only “right” that got any traction in history studies in school was the “right to vote”.

So when I came to the USA and started in on trying to understand the “Colonial mindset”. I went by the assumption that the USA and the UK are two separate countries and cultures and that the founding documents of the USA bore no real relation to the UK. So, when it came to gun rights for example, to my mind there was the American view and the British view and they were just different.

I assumed (there’s that word again) that we Brits had never owned guns in meaningful amounts, that “ordinary working folks” had no need for them and that it had always been that way, always. We will be re-visiting that little gem further on.

And here in the USA? Well I just assumed that there were some radicals in that radical bunch in Philadelphia who had the hots for guns. Not quite but it it was basically the mental shortcut I used to separate the concepts.

Gradually I came to the understanding (and it took a while to sink in) that the Bill of Rights and the Constitution are not instructions to individuals. They are the rules which government is permitted to live by. This was a watershed moment in my education. Government “rights” and permissions were allowed by the governed. They were not given by the government to itself. They were not powers delegated from some ruler, the Constitution was a document laying out what the governed were giving permission to the government to do. And the things they specifically told the Government it could not do.

I had, during this time, observed and taken part in on-line arguments and discussions about guns, Yanks, Brits etc. I took the stance, for the longest time, that the right to bear arms was a cherished right for Americans and that it was just different here in the USA than it was in England.

During that time I also studied the endless argument about whether or not the second amendment and the right to bear arms depends upon having an organized militia or whether it means that the statement “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed” directly implies that the condition of having a well regulated militia for the security of a free state is dependent upon the citizens having the right to bear arms.

Oh the arguments about the placement of the comma. The parsing, the back and forth.

And then came the Supreme Court decision on DC v Heller.

To my lackadaisical view I was not surprised. I had not realized that there was any real debate about our right to keep and bear arms for our own use. But I felt “validated” in my view by the decision. And moved along.

Until the publication of that article I mentioned right at the top of this little piece.

I read the article and became intrigued. Who the hell was “Joyce Lee Malcolm” and why on earth would some history book be a lynchpin for a Supreme Court Decision? And , what on earth was the English Bill of Rights?

So, off to Amazon I trotted to purchase the book. Of course, no Kindle edition. I ordered the paperback ($27 ! Priced like a text book thats for sure) and then received notice from Amazon that they were all out of it and I would have to wait. Three months later it finally arrived. (If a passing thought about big corporations working to stop Constitutional rights passed through my mind during that time – could anyone blame me?).

The book is called To Keep and Bear Arms by Joyce Lee Malcolm. It is an incredible work. Seriously. The historical scholarship seems precise exacting and thorough. It is a book that requires study rather than just a quick read.

It shook my self satisfied view of this whole debate and made me realize – THERE IS NO DEBATE. A Militia is not possible unless there is a population that has the right to keep and to bear arms. The Militia comes from the people. Not from anyone else.

And why is this important? Well the English thought it was incredibly important because the existence of the Militia kept a check on the potential tyranny of the Crown. The English landed gentry and political and commercial classes were rightly terrified of standing armies – supported by enforced taxation and loyal to the central authority. While the Crown was restricted by the cost of trying to maintain a standing army – the parliament through the local militias had no such problem.

A King lost his head in this debate. And after the interregnum of Cromwellian rule. Charles the 2nd was restored to the throne.

He was restored to the throne with a wave of enthusiasm and embarked on living the Good Life and in trying to break the power of the Militia. As part of his restoration he was given the right to raise a standing professional army. His allowance from parliament was agreed upon. Throughout his reign he sought various ways to separate the peasants from their weapons and to bypass the force of the Militia. He was fairly successful at it.

He converted to Catholicism just before his death keeping his promise to the King of France who had supplied him directly with the money to raise a larger standing army than Parliament wanted or would pay for.

Charles’ death and the succession to throne of his brother, James II (Of england James VII of Scotland) proved to be the end of the Stuart rule in Britain. James was a Catholic and determined to rule as an absolute Monarch.

After just under 4 years of his reign he fled England after the protestant landed class (and vast majority in the country) sent for James’ eldest daughter Mary, who was married to William of Orange and offered them the Crown. It was called The Glorious Revolution.

As a part of ascending the throne King William signed The English Bill of Rights in 1689 which included thirteen articles but these three may sound a little familiar:

That it is the right of the subjects to petition the king, and all commitments and prosecutions for such petitioning are illegal;

That the raising or keeping a standing army within the kingdom in time of peace, unless it be with consent of Parliament, is against law;

That the subjects which are Protestants may have arms for their defence suitable to their conditions and as allowed by law;

As Professor Malcolm put it – what had been a duty before (each man was responsible for the defense of his family, property and community and had the obligation to arm himself in order to do so) had now become a right.

So by the time Independence for the Colonies was being talked about, discussed and agreed upon – the right to keep and bear arms was a right of all Englishmen (which the Colonists were of course – until that memorable declaration of Independence).

And using that right – the Colonists raised militias from their armed population to defend themselves and their new independence from the standing armies of the Crown.

I hope I have done justice to the sterling work of Professor Malcolm and that the brief background here shows the logic and necessary background for the correct reading of the Second Amendment.

Whatever happened to the Brits? How did we end up with none of this?

Well back in 1900…

Read this webpage and see how you can lose rights you never knew you had.

Whither The Donald? Conservative Progress?

Randy B Corporon is a local attorney and Conservative leader.  Organizer and founder of the very successful Arapahoe County Tea Party and an occasional host on local radio news shows. His views and mine tend to coincide – at least they coincide more than they divert.

Today I noted a tweet from Randy. Well, it was a re-tweet of something from Ann Coulter expressing unhappiness with President Trump’s progress since the inauguration. Randy commented that he was starting to feel somewhat uneasy as well. Ann was a big supporter of Donald Trump during the primaries and the general.

Randy and I both voted for Trump. Both of us, I think it fair to say, voted reluctantly for Trump. We both supported more straightforward “conservatives” in the primaries, I was for Walker and then Cruz. As far as I know Randy is a Ted Cruz fan as well.

My own personal view of Donald Trump was that his presidency (should it arrive) would have been both interesting and irritating.  Interesting because, as a populist, it was likely that the priorities would change – swiftly, depending on the volume of noise from the supporters. Irritating because some of those changes would not be things which I would be enthused about.

What has Trump accomplished since the inauguration that I think has been worthwhile?

First and foremost is his complete mastery of the sounding brass and tinkling cymbals of the main stream “media” that is now the leadership of the Left. He has led them by the nose almost effortlessly since he arrived in Washington.

I don’t believe, to be honest, that this is a strategy. It just seems to be something that he does naturally. He has seized on the soft spot in the media’s underbelly. The inability of the reporters, their supervisors and directors to resist challenging Trump. Everything he says must be gainsaid, “fact” checked, argued, shown to be wrong. The effort expended in this is prodigious and all consuming and the result is – nothing.

The Trump Administration is winning almost every debate – because for the most part the media has no idea that any such debate is taking place.  The debates are taking place between the hard nosed and very capable and Conservative heads of the Executive departments and the House and the Senate. People like Secretary Mattis, Attorney General Sessions, Secretary of State Tillerson, Secretary John Kelly. I am not asserting that there is some seamless framework of cooperation or anything approximating that. What I am asserting is that what is being worked on and done is being done while the Main Stream media is bouncing up and down and barking like some some weird cross bred min-pin rotty.

Scott Adams, creator of Dilbert

One of the people that I think really does understand Donald Trump and the way he operates is Scott Adams – the creator of Dilbert and one of the few people I have ever read who managed to simply explain Cognitive Dissonance and how it applied to the then Trump candidacy.

Adams predicted the Trump victory, way ahead of anyone else that I know of. His opinions are worth reading on the subject .

The anti-science eco left

I was watching some BBC 2 program the other night – it was the usual warm, nature program that the BBC likes to produce showing what a natural country the UK is and how exciting it all can be. They even had a sign language interpreter! (obviously assuming that deaf/hard of hearing cannot actually read subtitles?) – But I digress.

There was a section about some migratory swans – they apparently arrive in late October and fly over 2 thousand miles to get to the UK. So far so good.

Where they land in the UK is some protected wetland place (I wasn’t following too closely as you can tell) where they are, in the words of the commentator, made comfortable. The wetlands staff even provide a nightly feeding for the peripatetic swans!! Almost an avian airBNB arrangement!

And I was suddenly struck by something which kind of boggles my mind. Why are these conservationists afraid of evolution? The environment challenges and forces organisms to adapt and by that adaptation to evolve into something better suited to survive. It isn’t personal, it’s just business (gratuitous Godfather h/t). Those that do not adapt, die out. The fossil record is replete with bygone species.

But now there is this rush – for example in the State of Lunacy (aka California) where some small fish or other must be made comfortable by diverting water from human endeavors instead of being challenged by its environment to either adapt, evolve and thrive, or join the other fossils.

Let us for the moment assume that the future climate of this earth will be different to what it is right now. I am avoiding the whole AGW thing for the moment so let’s not veer over to that. We – all sides – can agree that change is a given. The climate is always in the process of going somewhere. Right? Right!

Species that have protected little niches are not adapting. By definition the conservationists are attempting to hold them in place – clearly an impossibility if we think evolution is a fact of life. What will happen to them as time goes on? They will become even MORE out of step, even less evolved (kind of like liberals) and even MORE likely to die out.

But the constant cry is “preservation”!! Why do these Canutes of the environmental lobby get any sort of credence here? they are, definitively anti-science.

Is there something I am missing here?

What Trump may see that others do not.

I have noticed something in recent times that I guess I have actually noticed many times before and just written off as ignorance or a subtle expression of bigotry.

How does this manifest itself? Well let’s take the first arguments I ever saw against concealed carry. “Imagine those idiots out there with a gun, being a cowboy trying to be a hero and shooting innocent bystanders”. The first time I saw that – and it was years ago I was struck by the unspoken hatred for ordinary Americans. It was apparent that the person writing it assumed that “ordinary” Americans were incapable of actually evaluating a dangerous situation and responding appropriately. That there was this vast pool of yahoos that actually defines an ordinary American (but never the writer of course!) These people should be prevented – by their own government – from owning a firearm, because god knows what they might do with it.

But where are the articles and lawsuits arising from all these crazy cowboys unleashing hell on innocent bystanders? Let’s follow that up with the oft expressed message from the President that the most important thing to prevent in the current atmosphere is those self same “ordinary americans” from attacking Muslims, from committing offences of some kind against innocent people not involved in any form of sectarian violence. After the shootings in San Bernadino this was the FIRST priority of the Administration. Not immediate and thorough follow up on the attack itself, the trail of evidence, the investigation of the connections and so on. Oh no, it took days before the Administration could even bring itself to admit that this had been a terrorist attack. An unprovoked slaughter of people who had known and supported the couple in question but the Administration (and others) felt it of the first importance to warn their own citizens that they were not to do anything inappropriate and this before they even investigated what had actually happened.

There have been reports over the years of people in places like colleges faking “hate crimes” – painting swastikas in public places, other examples were a lesbian couple faking a hate campaign against them by .. who? Those unnamed but obviously dangerously bigoted and threatening “ordinary americans”. At the first reports of these outrageous reports the first reaction of local leaders and Administrations was to decry the nameless “racists” and to demand that everyone rally around in support and join in protests against this unseen enemy. I have yet to see the follow ups on these reports – did the people who perpetuated these faux outrages ever get prosecuted for hate crimes? Were they expelled from Colleges?

It is apparent that there exists a class of people who actually do not see working Americans as real, honorable, trustworthy responsible citizens. But rather as nameless dimwits who are ready to wave a gun at anyone who crosses their path, that somehow want to subjugate other “races” and will do unspeakable things if they are not held in check by an authoritarian government.

Yet these are, for the most part, the class whose sons and daughters join the military who, at 19 years old are entrusted to patrol in the dustbowls of foreign countries, to carry powerful weapons and despite being attacked by IEDs, ambushes, infiltrators actually manage to restrain their fists and weapons.

Young men and women forced to make life and death decisions in split seconds knowing that wrong decision or a decision made in desperation or anger can put them in danger of arrest and trial.

These are the young men and women who are the families of that segment of America which is routinely accused of racism, intolerance stupidity and greed. The idea that these families and people have exhibited true nobility in the face of inexplicable crimes, and not responded with some form of mass violence seems to escape the pundits who continue to try and pin shame and calumny on the people in this country who LEAST deserve it.

And finally a good percentage of them think that they have found someone – anyone – who is willing to articulate the way that they feel about it. And that person is Trump. Trump is no conservative I guess he is not really a lefty either. But he speaks of things that are pissing off a lot of “ordinary americans”. Is it any wonder they are responding?

President Obama when he was merely candidate Obama expressed his distaste for “bitter people that cling to guns and religion” while at the same time running for a job to actually represent them… Republican Bloomberg has expressed his distaste for Americans owning guns – while happily paying for armed guards.

I read a great article today on Red State written by a woman and entitled “Things you hear while standing in a gun line” which probably resonates with the pissed off silent middle of America and I can personally vouch for the veracity of the comments reported in the article because I have been in a similar line or two in the past weeks and heard substantially the same sentiment.

Personally speaking I find it truly amazing that people seek to insult denigrate and belittle “ordinary americans” and then get surprised when those self same people feel attacked and who go out and arm themselves. It is a curious thing – I know a lot of people who own both handguns and long guns and here is a sobering thought – 90% of them actually know how to use them. (I am sure that this is not the usual percentage, I live in rural Colorado) I would not go out of my way to make those people feel they were in danger.

Trump (who is not my favored candidate) is doing something that politicians from all sides have been failing to do. he is talking about and articulating the uncertainties and aggravations that a lot of people feel.