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AND FOR THE SECOND TIME THIS MONTH

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Many of you will have viewed with some disquiet the lead item on TV1 6.00 news tonight showing hundreds of gang members on motorcycles taking over a public road forcing cars off to the side while they escorted the hearse containing a deceased gang member to his final resting place. This being the second such instance in the past month.

And the police stood back and allowed this to happen. Their hands-off approach is driven by Deputy Commissioner Wally Haumaha who has championed engaging with gangs (on their terms) and by a government who believe the burgeoning gang problems can be solved with hugs and kisses.

So the new norm is grin and bear it because the police won’t intervene. Old time Police Commissioners like Gideon Tait will be spinning in their grave.

New Zealand … the way you’ve got it.

Written by The Veteran

June 18, 2021 at 10:45 pm

FOR THE LIBERAL EFFETE WHO WOULD HAVE IT THAT GANGS ARE MAORIDOM’S ANSWER TO ROTARY

Read the touching story of how Mongrel Mob member conned a gullible public to donate money to help him turn his life around and get a job. He raised $1,364 via a Givealittle page.

Poutawa ’Puk’ Kireka, 33, gained worldwide attention in mid-2019 after stating he was finding it difficult to find a job with ’Notorious’ tattooed across his face. He said at the time ‘I will always be a mobster, but it’s important to show we can have better lifestyles. I want to bring some of the others on board this better lifestyle’.

What he conveniently forgot to mention was that three days prior to making the appeal a police search of Kireka’s home had found bundles of cash totaling just short of $110,000; 10.44 gm of methamphetamine and 0.698 gm of Ecstasy.

Kireka has been a member of the Mongrel Mob since 2008 and has served two prison sentences for violence-related charges.

And I thought that Givealittle had a screening process in place to edit out shonky requests for assistance … silly me.

The whole story in glorious technicolor at https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/crime/300317013/highprofile-gang-member-found-with-109000-cash-before-getting-donations-to-help-turn-his-life-around

Written by The Veteran

June 1, 2021 at 11:53 am

Posted in Law and Order

Tagged with ,

SIMEON BROWN TELLING IT HOW IT IS

Kudos to Simeon Brown for doubling down on the criticism leveled at him from the Chairperson of the Kura Kaupapa Maori School for daring to criticise their decision to close the school for two days in order to host the tangi for the senior Mongrel Mob leader attended by over 1,000 mob members. She described his comments ignorant and racist. In response Brown has called on the Education Minister (Hipkins) to explain why he thought it was appropriate for a school to be shut down so a gang could hold a funeral on school grounds pointing out that students lost two days of learning.

It is a little difficult to take her comments seriously when she herself said that things had gone awry on the final day of the tangi and she wasn’t happy with the swearing and ‘barking’ that occured. Really!!!!! give me strength … what planet does she inhabit … this was a mob funeral. Clearly no thought at all for the children exposed to this ‘normal’ behavior. Lady, the Mongrel Mob doesn’t do ‘normal’.

A little while ago I served a couple of terms on the Lottery Grants Board (alongside Trevor Mallard who was the Opposition’s appointee to the Board …. about as likeable then as he is now … I digress). One day I had occasion to call out a staffer who had written a report which had it that the Mongrel Mob and Black Power were just Maoridom’s equivalent of Rotary or Lions and that applications from them for funding support should be treated the same way. Clearly back them the liberal effete were knocking at the door.

Now and with Cindy’s mob in power the door has been opened wide. Gangs are to be welcomed with smiles and hugs and their wishes accommodated. Never mind they comprise a large percentage of the countries criminal underworld. New Zealand … the way you’ve got it.

Written by The Veteran

May 29, 2021 at 3:09 pm

Posted in Law and Order, NZ Politics

Tagged with

NEW ZEALAND … THE WAY YOU’VE GOT IT

Can I start this off by making this simple statement … the Mongrel Mob are a criminal gang … no ifs, buts or maybes.

And their response to the widespread outrage spearheaded by National’s Simeon Brown over the mob being allowed to take over a portion of the State Highway in contravention of any number of traffic laws supposedly as part of ‘tangihanga’ was to have their media relations person, a certain Lou Hutchinson, launch a petition calling for Brown to be forced to apologise to the affected whanau for his racist outburst; that he be censured by the National Party and stripped of his portfolio responsibilities (Police, Corrections, Serious Fraud Office and Youth); that he be censured by the Speaker of the House and that his Facebook, Twitter and Social Media Accounts be suspended until he completes cultural sensitivity training and the Speaker deems him fit.

About the only thing they didn’t call for was his hanging, drawing and quartering without trial.

Kudos to Brown for his response … “if the gangs are trying to get me sacked then I must be doing the right thing”. Brown has previously received death threats for speaking out on gangs whose membership has grown by over 50% since Labour took office in 2017.

I finish where I started. The Mongrel Mob et al are major players in a whole range of serious criminal activity. Any hugs and kindness shown to them will be taken as a sign of weakness and the green light to continue on doing what they do best … thumbing their noses at the law. But its all hugs and kindness that gangs can look forward to from this soft cock on crime government and its not going to get any better soon.

Written by The Veteran

May 27, 2021 at 4:16 pm

Your Government Approved Hug is here

In case you were wondering whether the response of governments around the world to the pandemic of Chinese Sinus AIDS has set us on new paths of authoritarian control into the future, the following news out of Britain should tell you that the answer is “YES”.

What will enable this is not just the never-ending lust of politicians to control every aspect of your life but the cultural changes enabled by the disease response, including the way academia and the media treat this news:

Oh joy! Thank you, thank you government.

On the non-government good news front there is this longer term trend.

The prime reasons for this are:

  • The death of Mao Tse Tung in 1976.
  • The collapse of the USSR and it’s Eastern Bloc of slave states.
  • The pushback against Democratic Socialism starting in the 1980’s with Reagan and Thatcher.
  • The rise of the Southeast Asian states as part of the Pacific Rim growth.
  • The collapse of the post-colonialist regimes across Africa in the last twenty years. Despite various awful events that continent is actually growing its GDP quite well and may be on the verge of a China-type period of economic expansion. Given its population growth rate they need to.

A reader has raised an interesting question as to the worth of that $700 in 1968 vs today. The answer is that it’s worth $US 5,327.99 in 2021.

Of course that begs the question of what is meant by “inflation”, and the following chart has a very interesting take on that. Of course it’s the USA and only since 2000, but still.

There is also this as food for thought on things getting better.

Written by Tom Hunter

May 12, 2021 at 2:11 pm

We shall defend our Island…

Not a headline I expected to see in the early 21st century.

Apparently it’s something to do with fishing vessels

A Franco-British feud over access to prime fishing waters escalated on Thursday as the two countries deployed patrol and navy ships near the Channel island of Jersey.

Access to Britain’s rich fishing waters was a major sticking point in post-Brexit talks. A transition period was agreed in which EU fishermen would give up 25 percent of their current quotas — the equivalent of 650 million euros per year — in 2026. The deal would then be renegotiated every year.

Until then, EU vessels have access to an area between six to 12 nautical miles from Britain’s coast, but they have to ask for new licenses.

This is where things got complicated.

The French side says London acted outside of the deal by tightening conditions for access to UK waters

Basically a repeat of the Great Cod War of the mid-1970’s then. Not until reading that Wiki did I realise that there had been similar stoushes in the early 1970’s and 1958-1961.

It seems the French are already turning to the comfort of land warfare, where they have a history of far more success against the British than at sea:

“We’re ready to resort to retaliatory measures” that are in the Brexit accord, Girardin told lawmakers in the National Assembly on Tuesday.

“Concerning Jersey, I’ll remind you of the transport of electricity via submarine cables,” she added. “I would regret it if we have to do it, but we’ll do it if we have to.”

Anyway, I don’t think we should treat this as entirely funny because, as the great Edmund Blackadder once said:

Doesn’t anyone know? We hate the French! We fight wars against them!

Did all those men die in vain on the field at Agincourt?

Was the man who burned Joan of Arc simply wasting good matches?

Written by Tom Hunter

May 10, 2021 at 5:32 pm

The Chauvin Trial

George Floyd’s death in 2020 while being arrested in Minneapolis, led to violent riots across American cities for months, leading to multiple deaths, vast amounts of property destruction, particularly of small businesses and – for all practical purposes the destruction of the Minneapolis CBD, as well as severe damage to the CBD’s of other small cities and, in the case of Chicago, one big city.

Given this, the trial of the police officer in charge of Floyd’s arrest, Derek Chauvin, on charges of second degree murder, is likely to be one of the more important trials in the history of the USA. If Chauvin is found not guilty, I have no doubt that the riots will be repeated across the USA. Whether the Democrat Party will move against them or not is a question mark, given that they will no longer be useful as a weapon to be wielded against a sitting GOP President.

For reasons of ideology – the demand of Critical Race Theory (and its street thug version, Burn Loot Murder) that America is a systemically racist country – and a simple and well-founded fear of the mob, the state forces of Minneapolis and Minnesota absolutely must obtain a conviction of Chauvin.

To this end the city and state have marshalled huge resources for the prosecution, with multiple lawyers and all the research backup one could want. That’s before we even consider whether a impartial jury can even be hoped for after this last year.

By contrast, Chauvin’s defence lawyer, Eric Nelson, is basically on his own, other lawyers and law firms having backed away from having any contact with the defence because they’re afraid of the mobs, both street and professional. This list includes numerous law firms that have gleefully provided pro bono legal defence to Islamic Jihadist terrorists over the years – and been applauded for that by their fellow trial attorney’s.

Yes, that’s how screwed up this whole system of law and order is, let alone justice, which is always something different from law and order.

The best source of analysis of the trial that you’re going to get will be Scott Johnson at the Powerline blog. The following link, The Chauvin Trial, includes past commentary as he analysed the lead up to the trial, including jury selection, and the latest updates going forward:

The reasons for following Johnson on this trial are as follows:

  • He is a retired attorney with hundreds of trial cases behind him. He understands both the law and the tactics of a legal case fought in the courtroom, whether criminal or civil.
  • He has been writing for twenty five years on public policy issues such as income inequality, income taxes, campaign finance reform, affirmative action, welfare reform, and race in the criminal justice system.
  • He is a Minneapolis resident, so is intimately familiar with the local politics, law and people; the world in which judgement is going to be rendered on Chauvin.
  • He is a right-winger, meaning more than simple membership of the GOP. This means he brings a perspective unlikely to be found in the MSM, especially here in NZ, where it will simply be Reuters/AP/WaPo channeled through the likes of the NZ Herald.

If you are at all interested in this criminal trial I strongly urge you to follow what Scott Johnson writes about it at Powerline.

Written by Tom Hunter

April 2, 2021 at 7:00 am

So the beatings did change minds!

Last year cities across the USA exploded with violent riots, led by Burn Loot Murder in the wake of the death of one George Floyd while he was being arrested by police. Democrat-controlled cities as it happened, since they’re hotbeds of systemic racism.

Ground Zero for this was the city of Minneapolis, previously only really known for The Mary Tyler Moore Show in the 1970’s.

To show their sympathy and understanding for the Peaceful Protests, the “leaders” of the city not only pulled the cops from defending one of their precinct buildings, which was promptly burned to the ground, they started defunding their police force.

This led to entirely predictable results:

Homicides in Minneapolis are up 50 percent, with nearly 75 people killed across the city so far this year. More than 500 people have been shot, the highest number in more than a decade and twice as many as in 2019. And there have been more than 4,600 violent crimes — including hundreds of carjackings and robberies — a five-year high.

Not that it mattered to these people – at least initially.

It’s very sad that humans have to endure so much punishment before they see the light, although it’s a fair bet that the political leaders like Councilwoman Bender suffered no direct pain at all. But now the circle is complete.

So they’ve changed their minds and now they’re going to increase police funding, to the tune of $6.4 million per year, to hire more cops. Ordinary people have been hurt enough it seems and OrangeManBad has been defeated. What’s the bet that the BLM response will be tiny or non-existent.

The trouble is that it’s not really about the money anymore. What person in their right mind would want to join the MPD? A career spent with a target painted on your back with your Mayor and Councillors holding a large knife. You know that any encounter with a criminal that goes bad will likely be blamed on you, resulting in not just the end of your career as an MPD cop but loss of pension and employment prospects anywhere else, possibly even outside of law enforcement, as the Cancel brigade deems you a racist and goes after you and your family.

I can’t see many people buying into that, also knowing that even if the arrest goes well it won’t mean anything in the wake of District Attorney’s determined to show the protestors that they’re on their side – Left-Wing protestors admittedly. The following is from Portland but the same thing has been happening with DA’s in Seattle, Chicago, and Minneapolis.

It will be interesting to see the difference between this sort of “punishment” for throwing Molotov cocktails at cops vs what awaits those who smashed windows and invaded the “sacred spaces” of the Capitol in Washington D.C. on January 6th. Hannah Lilly’s actions and punishment mirror those of the folk who rioted in Washington on January 20, 2017, where the two hundred people arrested for such things had their charges dropped. But now, twenty years for Sedition is the rumour.

But then politicians are more important than cops, or any other subject of the nation for that matter.

In the case of Minneapolis you also have to consider the fact that people and companies have already seen enough and bailed on the city. I doubt this sop will bring them back, especially when it’s likely that the cop at the center of the George Floyd incident, Derek Chauvin, will be found not guilty of Second Degree Murder next month, and may even go free given that all the evidence may make it hard to even make Second Degree Manslaughter stick. His three comrades, facing lessor charges, may also go free.

Who would want to be a Minneapolis cop on that day?

Written by Tom Hunter

February 17, 2021 at 5:12 pm

The Democrat Cities: Portland

If there’s one city in the USA that is ground-zero for the Antifa movement it’s poor old Portland, Oregon. I don’t know why that should be but the results are not good. The city where BLM/Antifa never stopped rioting. Disturbances continue nightly in Portland, as it has since May 29, though the targets are now more diffuse and away from the CBD (the morons tried recreating Seattle’s CHAZ in Portland).

It’s notable that things have cooled a bit since the November election, leading me to wonder how many of these BLM/Antifa types were just Democrats stirring things up so that “healing” could occur were Trump defeated. I base that suspicion on the fact that the anti-war movements of the Double O’s, including Code Pink, basically fell apart soon after January 20, 2009, leaving true believers like Cindy Sheehan to wonder why they had been abandoned when nothing on the ground in Iraq and Afghanistan had changed from BushHitler days.

Still, Antifa criminals continue to be arrested, immediately released, and returned to the streets.

“Antifa rioters in north Portland have access to more than $1.3m in bail money, as well as pro bono lawyers. This is one reason even the extremely violent suspects get released so quickly to riot again.”

Antifa’s White Privilege

The whole White Privilege of Antifa, as evidenced by these photos of some Portland plonkers arrested on just one day.

Being arrested means nothing in Portland if you’re a member of Antifa. Aside from the bail money backing there’s the local DA:

Most of the 550 cases since rioting began on May 29 will be dropped. Out of those numbers, 140 of them were for felonies including assault, arson, riot and theft. Only 45 of those felonies have so far been charged, with many of the rest likely being dropped and others being reviewed.

The Portland Police Association President Daryl Turner pinned the blame precisely:

To District Attorney Schmidt: You ran on a platform of police accountability, which was a thinly veiled threat to indict police officers. What about indicting rioters who loot, burn, destroy, and assault? What about your ethical and moral duties to uphold the law and keep all our citizens safe? The people committing arson and assault are not peaceful protestors; they are criminals. Step up and do your job; hold the rioters accountable. If there is no consequence for crimes from the District Attorney’s office, there is no reason for criminals to stop the chaos...

I am disgusted that our City has come to this. If it is acceptable for rioters to commit acts of violence against community members and to try and burn down occupied buildings, and if this conduct is allowed to continue, then Portland is lost.

Things were no better at the state level. When Oregon Governor Kate Brown(D) announced a plan in early September for dealing with the riots by bringing in more resources, sheriffs made it quite clear what the actual problem was:

Had Governor Brown discussed her plan with my office, I would have told her it’s about changing policy not adding resources. Increasing law enforcement resources in Portland will not solve the nightly violence and now, murder. The only way to make Portland safe again, is to support a policy that holds offenders accountable for their destruction and violence. That will require the DA to charge offenders appropriately and a decision by the Multnomah County Presiding Judge not to allow offenders released on their own recognizance, and instead require bail with conditions. The same offenders are arrested night after night, only to be released by the court and not charged with a crime by the DA’s Office. The next night they are back at it, endangering the lives of law enforcement and the community all over again.

It’s tempting to say, “Well, Duh”, but in fact the policies of Brown, Wheeler, the DA and many local Democrat leaders is not so much willful blindness and stupidity but active ideological intent. They want those criminals to continue acting as criminals because they think it will enable their political ambitions and they have come around to the old notion that it is societies that are the real criminals.

It should be noted that if the Proud Boys, Boogaloo Boys and company were actually involved in any meaningful way with these riots – and they are always mentioned in these discussions by defenders of the Democrats and Antifa – then there is no way that DA Schmidt would be allowing them to walk. The fact that so few such people are in jail in Portland and Oregon (or Seattle) is a testament to how irrelevant they are to this debate and how much of a convenient, bullshit excuse they are for the US Far Left.

There were also the larger political objectives, like getting rid of Trump. So when the President ordered various Federal agencies to start arresting people who attacked Federal buildings and employees – since the Portland Police seemed unable to do so – the outcry from the Democrat mayor and Oregon’s Democrat governor was immediate. They wanted that to stop. Apparently they like the “protestors” more than their voters in downtown Portland, which is now mainly boarded up.

Like most politicians he doesn’t say what specific pro-active methods he’s going to use to end these “violent demonstrations” and the fact that they ploughed on for over one hundred days proved that he either had no idea or didn’t care. At best he thought that the Feds leaving the city would do the trick, even though he’s part of the hated “Fascist System” as well. It’s not like the Portland Police had not already been a target of Antifa violence on many occasions.

When Wheeler tried this stunt again in press conference he finally got fact-checked in real time:

A reporter then points out the riots were already happening for 5 straight weeks before DHS came.

To which there was no answer. Of course. Wheeler would then go on to embarrass himself by pleading with the rioters to stop (on the 68th night of rioting) – because they were helping Trump:

“You are creating the B-roll film that will be used nationally to help Donald Trump in this campaign. You don’t want to be part of that, then don’t show up,”

Don’t appeal to any sense of law and order, or civility or decency. No, instead you appeal to the mob’s innate political Far Left beliefs and the idea that they might be helping their mortal enemies.

What a prick.

In any case the Antifa mobs ignored Wheeler completely, which is hardly a surprise when you listened to their “leaders”:

Black Lives Matter leader Lilith Sinclair says she’s “organizing for the abolition of not just the militarized police state but also the United States as we know it”

It should therefore come as no surprise when a number of Portland cops of all races, male and female, described what they’re facing:

“The crowd keyed in on [the female officers], saying some of the most vile things to them, talking about sex assault, about being sex objects for other officers,” Maxey said. “There was one individual that said that he was going to take the baton from one of the female officers and sexually abuse her with it. It was something that is so vile, no one should be exposed to it.

Sgt. Derrick Foxworth, who is black, agreed saying that he had not seen any racism from the Portland Police and that they can’t focus on other crime if they continuously have to deal with the rioters. He said they needed the community relationship engendered by the GVRT in order to successfully deal with gun crime.

Elijah Schaffer noted another Black cop giving his own insight into the Alice-In-Wonderland insanity he encounters with White BLM protestors.

You’re at a BLM protest, you have more minorities on the Police side than you have in a violent crowd. And you have white people screaming at Black officers: “You have the biggest nose I’ve ever seen”

They don’t even know that the tactics that they are using are the same tactics that were used against my people. And they don’t even know their own history…

Coming from someone who graduated from PSU with a History degree, it’s actually frightening. You know they say if you don’t know your history you’ll repeat it… and watching people do that to other people.

Every time I try to have a conversation with someone that looks like me someone White comes up and blocks them and tells them not to talk.

I disagree with one of Schaffer’s points: as that Antifa leader shows, they know exactly what they’re doing. They’re trying to destroy the entire system. That’s their goal and they could not care less about accusations of hypocrisy and double standards:

… an ongoing effort by a complex, distributed antifa network to conduct a “dilemma action,” intended to target the Portland Police Bureau (PPB) based on several days of open-source research and direct observation.

Put simply a dilemma action is a strategy using carefully-targeted types and degrees of civil disobedience to cause security forces to either concede the space and thus exhibit weakness, or respond in a manner that appears disproportionate and evokes negative sentiments in the population.

Win Win for Antifa.

Incidentally the GRVT that Sgt. Foxworth referred to is the Gun Violence Reduction Team, which was cut as part of the whole Defund The Police insanity. So much for the Democrat Party’s stand on “gun control”. The results here have also been predictable:

Portland had a higher number of homicides in July than they had during any other one-month period over the last 30 years. There’s also been a surge in assaults, burglaries, vandalism, and shootings. As of July 30, 15 people were killed in Portland in July alone, according to The Oregonian. They’ve already had 24 killings for this year. There were 63 shootings so far this month compared to 28 in July 2019, according to the Police Bureau, more than double last year.

All that blood is on Wheeler’s hands, as well as Antifa’s, although for the latter group it’s all grist to the mill in destroying the society they hate: Win Win for them again.

It therefore may surprise you to know that Wheeler was re-elected in November. It won’t surprise you when you learn who his opponent was:

Longtime Portland community organizer Sarah Iannarone has made no secret of her political sympathies. She declared last year that “I am Antifa” and wryly embraced the “Antifa mayor” label. She and her campaign manager, Gregory McKelvey, were featured in a December article in Playboy with the headline “Antifa in Focus.”

“I am antifa,” she tweeted in September. “I stand proudly beside the good people of this city organizing in countless ways every day to oppose hate in its myriad forms.”

Why yes, her skirt is covered with the faces of Che, Mao and countless other blood-soaked Communist murderers. Ignore the bland and stupid smiling face: these people are her heroes. If she wore images of Himmler, Goering and company she’d be politically dead, yet just a month before the election she led Wheeler in the polls by 11 points.

Un-fucking believable.

Wheeler won by the smallest margin in Portland mayoral history, 5.4%. But read that link to The Oregonian for the tongue bath it gives to Wheeler and Iannarone and note this:

“At the end of the day Portland is a liberal town, but it’s not that far left and there’s a ceiling for that, right now,” Horvick said. 

Key words those: “Right now.” But plenty of potential for Iannarone and company in the future.

If that’s how screwed up the voters of Portland are now then it’s hard to see how the city has a viable future.

The sad list: The Democrat Cities

Written by Tom Hunter

January 4, 2021 at 6:00 am

USA: Riots, Lockdowns and the Damage Done

While it’s the bigger cities like Portland, Seattle, Minneapolis and Chicago that have been the focus of the Burn Loot Murder crowd, smaller places have been hit. The worst being the town of Kenosha, Wisconsin, just a little further up the Western shores of Lake Michigan from Chicago.

But there have been plenty of much smaller places that also got some of the same treatment without the media attention, and the following link is to a guy who decided to travel through some of those places to see the damage. It’s a sad journey.

To take just a small sampling: Atlantic City, NJ, Fort Wayne, IN, Green Bay, WI, and Olympia, WA all underwent significant riots, at least per the normal expectations of life in these relatively low-key cities. Did you hear anything about them? Because I hadn’t, and I’m abnormally attuned to daily media coverage. Only because I personally visited did I learn of the damage.

The “article” is long but worth your time to read as he tours through these forgotten places and talks to forgotten people like Flora Westbrooks, whose salon was burned to the ground in Minneapolis, and Long Her, whose clothing store was looted.

Long Her (L) and Flora Westbrooks (R)

In almost every case these people are not White. Many of them are immigrants from places like Mexico, India, Ethiopia, Somalia…

Maybe the media commentators who reflexively glamorized these riots don’t know or don’t care, but the primary victims — meaning those who feared for their safety, suffered severe material losses, and whose lives were upended — are themselves minorities, and were targeted by activist whites.

He finishes on a sombre note, which is also a poor reflection on the MSM:

The man, an immigrant from Sierra Leone, said the following: “I grew up in a war zone, and I’ve never seen anything like it.” What does it say that these kinds of experiences have barely impinged on the national consciousness? Despite the incredible amount of destruction that I’ve personally witnessed, it’s only a tiny fraction. If I hadn’t made a point to spend six weeks traveling around the country, I never would’ve gotten this information.

Then there is this link to a substack article (these are becoming more common for journalists), Tales from America’s COVID college campuses, which contains a long list of testimonials about the insane conditions of American universities as they open for the start of their year. Here are just a three.

Southern Methodist University: “Students must wear masks outside dorm rooms, cannot visit another dorm, etc. Threatened with draconian honor code violations if they violate the rules and orientation was declared all virtual at the last minute.  Yet today, the athletes, with permission of and active participation by the University, were permitted to organize a BLM march through campus.”

Colorado State University: “My daughter … was there not even 24 hours and was sent to quarantine because she ‘might’ have come into contact with someone who was in contact with someone who tested positive for the virus. They made the students leave their own rooms and moved them into a room and they couldn’t bring their own bedding. The food they drop off is a frozen sandwich, orange, chips and soda. They have to stay there for 14 days and won’t even test them. No outside testing is even allowed. The admin don’t know what they’re doing nor do they let them outside. They make the locks not work.”

Boston College: “This is a horrible way to go to college.  [Daughter] was in tears last night about the prospect of the mandatory immediate quarantine while waiting for the test,… As far as why parents would send their kids back, my daughter has a really good scholarship – [most] of her tuition is paid.  We can’t risk losing it because we don’t have the means to pay for college without good financial aid. What we are doing to this generation of kids is awful … common sense has been missing from this debate for months.”

And in every case classes are being conducted via the now ubiquitous Zoom, even as the students get hit with all the normal charges. I can’t see how they will get away with this for much longer and it is no surprise to see predictions that half of all American universities may close in the next decade.

As awful as the stories about student conditions in 2020 are, the virus has been merely the tipping point for a system whose traditional business model had already broken and which is facing declining numbers of 18 year olds eager to rack up $100,000+ debts for increasingly useless degrees. Like radar and rockets, the disruptive technology of online learning was already here and merely needed a “war” to take off.

Finally there’s this article, A Nation Falling Apart, whose points I fear should be taken note of, even by American optimists like me, although the author seems to be maintaining a sense of humour about it all:

First they came for the toilet paper and kitchen towels, then they came for flour and now they are taking your coins. Yes, the American public sitting out the COVID-19 virus is now having to deal with what is referred as a “small change shortage.”caused apparently by hoarding…

The Federal Reserve has created a U.S. Coin Task Force to address the problem.

Cops have figured out that they have no one on their side and are best served by doing as little as possible when the shooting starts. Policemen have, in fact, been on the receiving end of much of the recent violence.

Predictably as the cops withdraw, whether by choice or by order, gun sales in the USA are through the roof, with millions of them being first-time owners, and with big increases among woman and Blacks.

I knew how to shoot from my time in the Army and CIA but have not actually fired a weapon since 1978 … The first thing we learned was that it was hard to get an appointment with a trainer at a licensed range. It took us weeks to make an appointment and we only got one when there was a cancellation.

And then there’s the booze problem:

I live in Virginia and our state store is constantly running out of everything. A cashier told me that they are selling 300% more booze than normal for this time of year.

If you’re well-stocked on booze and ammo you only need one more thing:

Finally, a family member owns a construction company. He recently said that business is unexpectedly booming, in part because people are building panic rooms, safe havens and even 1960s style fallout shelters in and behind their houses. Most of the construction work is being done as unobtrusively as possible because the clients don’t want their neighbors to know how scared they are.

I don’t think it’s nuclear war they’re scared of!