J. Kb

I know it sounds crazy

I am going to argue for a shift in social policy.  I know the immediate reaction to it from many (if not most or all) of my readers will be “J.Kb, are you crazy?  Did you hit your head and become a socialist?”  No I haven’t gone crazy, or become a socialist.  But I want you to bear with me for a moment, and let me argue my point.

I have become in favor of publicly funded daycare, as part of the public school system.

This came about as the result of some conversations I had recently with my tax guy and my son’s daycare.

Let me explain why:

In principle, I am not against the government spending money.  It needs to.  What concerns me is how much money the government spends and on what it spends the money.  One of the things I believe in is that the government should not be in the business of direct wealth transfers.  The government shouldn’t take money from Citizen A and give it to Citizen B, because A has more then B.

I am in favor of spending (in reasonable, sustainable amounts) on institutions that benefit the country and citizenry as a whole.

The military to defend us.

Law Enforcement to protect us.

An impartial judicial system (courts, prosecutors, public defenders) to maintain justice and order.  This is critical for a strong economy, where legal protection is vital in maintaining business contracts.  Without courts to enforce civil law, our economy would crumble.

Infrastructure that is used for the transportation of goods and services that support a thriving economy.  The Federal Interstate Highway System is perhaps the greatest economic endeavor of any government since the fall of the Roman Empire.

I will add to this list, public education.  It is a benefit to the nation that its citizenry is educated.  It benefits all of us when our population is literate and can finish school with the skills necessary to work and contribute to the economy (We can debate the effectiveness of this later, I’m talking about principles).  This is one of the things that separates 1st world from 3rd world countries, mass education.

Given this, I think that public daycare would be a public benefit.  The children of the poor and working classes are at a disadvantage to the children of the middle class.  We can talk about many reasons why, but one of the biggest is that middle class kids are better prepared for school.  Middle class parents read to their kids.  Poor parents don’t.  Part of that is just a matter of time (hours put in at work), and part of that is cultural.  This is also seen over summer vacation, where poor kids don’t get intellectually stimulated and fall behind while middle class kids go to camp.

Publicly funded daycare would provide an education floor for poor kids before they started school and during the summer, giving them the benefits of a more middle class upbringing.

Yes, I am absolutely advocating educating the generationally poor out of their generational poverty.

I’m already paying for publicly funded daycare, so are you.  Both at the state and federal level.  This is the exact type of direct wealth transfer that I am against.  Going to a publicly funded system would come with ending the daycare subsidy.  This transitions the money the government spends on daycare from a direct wealth transfer to a public benefit available to anybody who wants to use us.

Yes, I know, public daycare will cost more than the subsidy, so how is this better?  Well, this is where conservative pragmatism comes in.  By providing public daycare, we can reduce other direct wealth transfers a well.  Daycare is expensive, even with the subsidies.  There is the common argument that for many parents, daycare isn’t worth the cost.  They just don’t make enough money to justify daycare.  I can tell you from personal experience, this one is true.  We moved for my job.  My wife didn’t work for a while because if she went out and got a retail job, she would’t make enough to cover the cost of daycare.  It wasn’t until professional job came along that it became financially worth it.

By removing the cost of daycare entirely from someone’s budget, now a minimum wage (or better) job is a money making venture.  For poor families and single mothers, this means more income.  More income means less other benefits.

Let me be brutally honest: “Now that your daycare is publicly funded, like public school, you have no reason not to get a job, so go find work because we’re gonna reduce your welfare.”

Given the rate of welfare abuse (including daycare subsidies*) and the inefficiency of government wealth transfer programs, the additional cost to the public for daycare should be offset by the reduction in other benefit programs.

*Growing up in Florida, with my family owning a small business that employed a lot of part time workers, I witnessed first hand how grandma could get approved as a daycare and collect the daycare subsidy for watching her own grand kids.

More people working is also a benefit to the public as more people are involved in the production side of the economy and become tax payers.

Now I know one of the arguments against this is just how bad the public school system is.  Yes, I am aware of that.  But part of this program is that I support a voucher system – which I also believe in for public school reform.  Pick your daycare (licensed ones only, no more grandma), and the credit follows you.

So there you have it.  I want to make daycare a public benefit.  The two reasons are:

  1. Educate the bad habits out of poor kids.
  2. Gives me an excuse to cut welfare/direct wealth transfers.

Let me put it to you like this: I have Netflix.  Some people can’t afford Netflix.  I’d rather pay a little more to add to the DVD collection at my local public library (which I can borrow from as well) than to pay for other people’s Netflix.  Public benefit vs. direct wealth transfer.

Hopefully my justifications are enough to allow me to keep my conservative credentials (especially No. 2).

 

 

Let Me Be Clear

There are two quotes from George Orwell’s magnum opus, 1984, that have been sticking in my mind the last few days.

There will be no curiosity, no enjoyment of the process of life. All competing pleasures will be destroyed. But always — do not forget this, Winston — always there will be the intoxication of power, constantly increasing and constantly growing subtler. Always, at every moment, there will be the thrill of victory, the sensation of trampling on an enemy who is helpless. If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face — forever.

The old civilizations claimed that they were founded on love or justice. Ours is founded upon hatred. In our world there will be no emotions except fear, rage, triumph, and self-abasement. Everything else we shall destroy — everything.”

When I read 1984 in high school, and then again in college, the idea of a free nation turning into a totalitarian state was treated as a top down movement.  Of course 1984 was based on the rise of Stalin in the Soviet Union, and that very much was a top down power grab.

It rocks me to my core to see so much of what Orwell warned us against coming to life, as a bottom up, populist movement.  I read 1984, firm in the conviction they I never wanted to have the boot in my face.  I am a die-hard supporter of the Second Amendment because our founding fathers wrote into the principle document of this nation, a way to get the boot out of our faces if all other means fail.

I watch the Social Justice activists, BLM agitators, and people at the anti-Trump rallies, and for all their bloviating about how they are oppressed and they want to end oppression, their goal is quite clear.  They want to wear Orwell’s proverbial boot.

The extent to which they want to carry out the act of becoming the oppressor class makes me wonder if either Orwell was perhaps the greatest prognosticator of the 20th century, or Social Justice has read 1984 as a how to manual.

There will be no curiosity, no enjoyment of the process of life.”

There is a quote by H.L. Mencken “Puritanism: The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy.”  Social Justice activists have succeeded in taking this to the extreme, by finding any opportunity to denounce someone else’s fun as racist and shut it down.  They have used the term cultural appropriation as an excuse to stop all intellectual curiosity or cultural cross pollination.  These people have be able to find the racism and oppression in taco nightcarnival games, cafeteria sushi, yoga, popular literatureweak reasons to go drinking, exploration of classical art, and pretty much everything else in the known universe.

Ours is founded upon hatred. In our world there will be no emotions except fear, rage, triumph, and self-abasement. Everything else we shall destroy — everything”

Social Justice is a movement that states that it is for tolerance and anti-racism.  The level of open, naked, antisemitism it displays is something that Western Civilization has not seen since Europe in 1930’s.  Top colleges like Vassar, Oberlin, and the UC system all but offer degrees in Jew hatred.  Even people who would normally be embraced for being “stunning and brave” by Social Justice, find themselves under attack for being associated with Jews.

They have fought to change or ban the names of libraries, academic titles, school crests, and school names, with near ISIS desire to purge history that does not conform to their ideology.

They turn the most pedestrian of activities into an excuse to earnestly advocate for ethnic cleansing and genocide.

They use racial animus and hate to swell their ranks and demand undeserved restitution form others.  They do not try to better society.  I have never heard, seen, or read a discussion on White Privilege that sought to improve the lives of black Americans, only to make the lives of White Americans worse.  It is the politics of scapegoating all of a group’s ills on another, and then exacting retribution.

Social Justice is no stranger to shouting down people and opinions they disagree with.  But what they have done in this election season is beyond the pale.  I am no fan of Donald Trump (and I have no interest in the comments to this post turning into a defense of Trump), but I adamantly believe in the principle I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

Using riots, violence, and the promise of civil disobedience to try and shutdown the campaign of a politician is the antithesis of democracy.  Threatening people with violence for supporting a political candidate is the fastest way to end liberty.

trump jumped

WarMachine

This is populist totalitarianism.  This is an attack on the core principles on which America was founded.  This is the lacing up of the boot.

This we cannot abide.

If you want to support a candidate, that is your right.  Donate to their campaign.  Stump for them.  Go to the polls and vote for them on election day.

DO NOT try to silence the opposition and intimidate your opponent’s supporters.

I promise you, that will not end well.  That is not a threat, not yet, that is a warning.  I do not want to have to recount to day to my children when I witnessed the American kristallnacht, at the hands of those who proclaim to be for Social Justice.

Never again.  I mean it.

There are many of us, millions of us, who do not want the boot in our or anybody else’s faces.  We don’t care who wears it, an elected official, petulant children, social activists, or an angry mob.  We want only to breathe deep of the sweet air of freedom.  To paraphrase MLK, we want everybody to drink from the river of prosperity, freed from the thirst of oppression.

The very first flag hoisted by this nation was emblazoned with the words DONT TREAD ON ME.  A dozen score years later, we still bear that motto proudly.

Since this is the hashtag generation, let me put this in words that you will understand #FuckYourBoot.

 

Not doing yourself any favors

A 17 year old black youth, named Trevon, was shot under dubious circumstances in Miami.

It seems that young Trevon had broken into the wrong home.  The home owner was alerted to the break in by her security camera, rushed over to the home, and shot the youth after a confrontation as we was climbing out of the back window.

Not all of the details are in yet.  The home owner has not been charged and is cooperating with police.

I’m not going to rush to judgement on this case.  Could she have been attacked during the confrontation, making the shooting justified?  Maybe.  Could she have shot an unarmed teenager snaking out of her home?  Equally likely.  What I do know is, as a citizen with a gun, it’s best to avoid this type of situation all together.  It’s one thing if you are home when the break in occurs.  If your alarm goes off and you have security camera footage of the burglar, let the cops deal with it.  Not just as a mater of law, but you don’t know if the intruder is armed.  Don’t go looking for a fight.

That said, sometimes the loved ones of the victims make it very, very hard for me to sympathize with them at all.  Trevon’s aunt is one of these people.

It’s no reason she should have waited until I think he walked out the yard to try to shoot him.  If she called the police already why would she shoot him? You have to look at it from every child’s point of view that was raised in the hood.  You have to understand… how he gonna get his money to have clothes to go to school? You have to look at it from his point-of-view.”

Hold on a minute.  Let me see if I got this right?  Because your nephew was raised in the hood (Liberty City, FL), it is OK for him to break into home and rob them in order to obtain the legal tender necessary to purchase necessities?  Burglary is an acceptable form of occupation?

I’m trying to remain objective here, waiting to for all the facts to come in, and if need be call a bad shoot a bad shoot.  Now I have to try an ignore the crap that came out of your mouth.  Auntie, please, STFU.

Sellout

E.J. Smith is a Firearms Instructor in Charleston, West Virginia.  Mr. Smith is extremely butthurt by West Virginia Senate Bill 347, for permitless concealed carry.  See, Mr. Smith teaches a concealed carry safety course out of his garage.  Seeing his source of supplementary income drying up, Mr. Smith opened his big, stupid, butthurt mouth to the media.

Has this state gone crazy? Eighty percent of the people who go through my program are doing all kinds of things wrong…Now you want to turn everyone loose with a firearm without any training at all? Not another state will touch us for reciprocation other than Arizona. We WILL lose the 34 states that currently do reciprocate!  I can’t believe that the NRA would want this…This is ridiculous and will lead to all kinds of accidents and Old West-type crimes. It will not be safe to live here anymore. When we upped the age (for conceal carry permits) to 21, I said, thank God. Think about how irresponsible and hot-headed you were at 18. Now they ALL can carry concealed without training!…I love my gun rights too, but this is irresponsible to the limit. Law enforcement has their hands full already. You are about to see them flee their jobs in droves. I would…The process is good…Almost no one is denied a permit. When they are, it’s for a reason, like domestic violence or a previous felony. Do you really want these people now carrying?

Not once, but TWICE!!!

We want our guys to feel safe and knowing that anyone can carry a gun just isn’t going to do that.

There are currently seven states that have constitutional carry: Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Kansas, Maine, Vermont, and Wyoming.  West Virginia has passed constitutional carry (over the veto of the governor), but the law has not gone into effect yet.  In all of those states, especially the ones that have passed constitutional carry recently recently, I have not heard of any rampages, fender-bender gunfights, or other doom-and-gloom that is predicted as the result of any increase in the right to carry.

Why?  Because it is always the same bullsh*t straw-man, arguments:  A state goes from having no CCW provision to CCW and the streets will run red with blood.  A state goes from may issue to shall issue and will become Dodge City.  A state adopts Stand Your Ground and paranoid shoot-first gun owners will blow away every (usually black) person that twitches.  A state approves campus carry and drunk frat bros will shoot up professors over pop quizzes.  Has any of this ever happened?  No, but why let that stand in the way of hysterics.

At least the miserable turd came clean as to why he is against WV constitutional carry.

There is not going to be anybody coming out to take a class and spend the money, besides maybe a few people who want their youngsters to learn to shoot or something.  [His business] certainly won’t be thriving, and the more likely event will be that I just close to doors on it.

Here, let me summarize Mr. Smith’s sentiments for you.  “Screw your rights, I gotta get paid.”

The harpies over at MDA have picked up on Mr. Smith’s quote, using if for their own nefarious purposes.

Smith

If you are serious about gun rights, you don’t give ammo to the antis.  It’s a simple principle.  One that E.J. Butthurt has violated in the worst way.  And what caused this transformation to anti-gun Judas?  The potential loss of an at-home gun safety business that I’m pretty sure he’s not making a living with.

I’ve never been to WV and I don’t foresee myself going there any time soon, but I am incredibly thankful that the WV State Senate overrode the governor’s veto to pass constitutional carry only because it’s gonna hit Mr. Smith right in the bank account.

With friends like this… never mind.  E.J. Smith isn’t a friend of the gun community.  His belief in gun rights ends with his ability to make a buck.  He’s a slimy, sellout, turncoat, quisling.

I’ll say it again…

I’m going to beat this anti-gun horse to death, grind it into IKEA meatballs, and them feed it to them.

Gonzalez

Everytown is quoting University of Houston, English Department, Associate Professor Maria C. Gonzalez.  A professor of English.  I wondered what type of “critical intellectual work” she felt allowing CCW on campus would discourage.  I showed this quote to my wife, who majored in English Education as an undergrad, and she asked the same question.

So I decided to do some digging.  Turns out, she has quite a few negative ratings about how she conducts her class.

Gonzalez 1

Gonzalez 2

gonzalez 3

gonzalez 4

Well that explains it.  Professor Gonzalez sees her role in the classroom as less about teaching students mastery of the written English language, and more about being a Social Justice activist.  Even her good reviews make it clear that Propagandist Professor Gonzalez is politically biased; she’s just an easy grader if you are willing to parrot her ideas back at her.

gonzalez 5

My guess here is that Propagandist Professor Gonzalez is a dyed-in-the-wool Progressive activist.  It’s not idea of a gun in her classroom that terrifies her.  It’s the idea of an independently minded, and potentially *gasp* conservative, student in her classroom that terrifies her.  It’s the idea that one of the impressionable young minds in her class might not be so easily malleable to her world view.  This is not the opinion of a professional educator who earnestly wants her students to think critically and evaluate new concepts.  This is the opinion of a Progressive evangelist who only wants to preach to the choir.

This type of professor is a stain on academia.  Her opinion on this issue is as worthless as the education she hoists upon her students.

 

Um, moms…

Caught this over at the MDA Facebook page:

roulette

I know that you love to dance in the blood of martyr every person you can who has died from a gunshot wound.  Hacks gotta hack.  I get that.  I don’t want to make light of a family’s suffering, but this post of your is kind of beyond the pale.

Eric Tusing, 27, was reportedly playing Russian Roulette with a gun he thought was unloaded when it fired, killing him.

Really!?!  You are going to martyr as a “tragedy” a young man that played Russian Roulette?  You do know how that “game” is played, right?  What the point of it is?

This was a case of terminal stupidity.  Not and accident, not unintentional, just dumb.  There is no gun control that would have stopped this from happening.  If an adult is willing to point a gun at their head and pull the trigger… well… if the natural law of self preservation didn’t prevent this, there is no law of man that would have either.  Especially since the news article you cited said:

They say the kids have always grown-up around guns and learned to always assume a gun was loaded.

So they still can not believe this happened. Last month they were told 27-year-old Eric Tusing was in Burlington, joking with friends about playing Russian Roulette.

That’s when he accidentally shot himself not knowing the gun was loaded.”

So this guy KNEW safe gun handling and did this anyway.

Let me redirect you to another article from a few years back that has just a little bit more integrity than this one.

Bungee Jump Kills Local Man, Police Say Cord Was Homemade.

When a guy about the same age ties a bunch of elastic cargo straps together and jumps off a bridge, that’s not a accident or a tragedy either.  There is no consumer protection legislation that would have stopped that.  You just can’t protect some people from themselves.

I feel bad for this family.  I can’t imagine the heart ache of having to bury two sons.  One son getting shot by a dropped gun feels dubious to me (drop testing is an industry standard, but maybe it was an old or defective gun), but at face value will accept that as accidental.  The son who shot himself playing Russian Roulette?  Do not, do not, do not, use his lethal idiocy to try and restrict my civil liberties.

The Hallowed Halls

Miguel has touched on University of Texas at Austin Professor Frederick Steiner’s elevation to anti-gun folk hero, for his decision to leave his position because of the passing of campus carry.

The people over at Everytown are now doubling down on this.  They are celebrating that campus carry will lead to a “brain drain,” calling for more professors to leave Texas.  The comments over at the Everytown Facebook account, as well as on the Rawstory article, fall into two camps (sometimes both):

  1. I’d never send my kid to a school in Texas/state with campus carry.
  2. “‘Brain drain?’ People in Texas don’t have brains, yuk yuk yuk (insert Bush joke).”

I don’t know Dr. Steiner.  I’ve never met him.  I can tell you from his interviews, I don’t like him.  In my long academic career, I have met many professors who just didn’t like students.  They loved research, writing, fundraising (which comes with taking a cut of any grant money brought in), and the prestige of holding  recognized chair in a field.  They just didn’t like having to show up in a classroom and interact with students.  I hated professors like that and swore that I’d never become one.  From the way Steiner just casually insults the (what would be mostly graduate level, since you have to be 21 to get a CCW permit) students of Texas – assuming that they are irresponsible and dangerous, I believe that he is one of those types of professors.  He “like[s] fund-raising, obviously,” students, not so much.

But I digress.

The “brain drain” that the anti-gun establishment is hoping for, I don’t think is going to happen.  The causal assumption here is that antis are smart and gun people are stupid.  My favorite professor as an undergraduate was in the Mechanical Engineering department.  He taught Materials for Mechanical Engineers, and is the man who got me interested in Materials Engineering, and Design for Manufacturing.  He was also the faculty sponsor for the college gun club – yes, we had a school funded gun club.  During DfM, he would bring in samples (the way good profs do) of parts manufactured in different ways.  Guess what he brought in as an example of forging?  If you guessed an AR-15 upper receiver blank, you are right.

My graduate adviser is/was also a gun guy, and has been a consultant for the firearms industry for years.  He actually got me working on my very first firearms related failure analysis while I was a student.  We actually got the school to change its policy on firearms on campus (before the state legalized campus carry) in order to bring guns in to do materials testing on them in the lab.

When I started working, one of my colleagues turned out to be the former chief metallurgist of one of the largest firearms and ammunition manufactures in America, and one of the smartest men in the world on brass metallurgy.  He is now semi-retired as a consultant and is a adjunct professor at am engineering college in Indiana.

There are a lot of gun guys in Academia.  We’re pretty quiet and don’t like to rock the political boat.  Engineering and hard science is a lot more conservative than you think.  Sure, maybe some professor that teaches “sexism in pre-colonial cave paintings” may flee for the Blue states, but I have total disregard for their un-serious field of study anyway and don’t consider that a loss for the university.

There isn’t going to be a “brain drain” in campus carry states.  At most it will be a culling of the heard of useless academics.

Also.

For all those anti-gun snobs who look down on Texas and other Red states south of the Mason-Dixon, let me remind you that Texas has consistently been in the to 5 states for economic growth for the last 10 years.  It was No. 2 last year, beat only by the North Dakota oil boom.  Manufacturing and technical industry is booming in the south.  Detroit is hemorrhaging jobs.  Alabama is now home to manufacturing for Toyota, Honda, Hyundai, Navistar, Mercedes-Benz, and Airbus.  Huntsville may be “Rocket City USA” by history, but it’s fast becoming “Motown 2.0.”

 

I am reminded of stories from history about poor, racist whites, no matter how poor and illiterate they were, no matter the conditions of barefoot squalor they lived in; comforted themselves in the knowledge that they were white and therefore “better” than their black neighbors who might actually work harder and make more money.  Today, Blue state liberals, no matter how bad the economy is in their states, no matter how in debt they are, no matter how high their unemployment may be; they take solace in the fact that they are not southerners.  It is the same attitude, filled with the same smug bigotry and hatred, and it is just as ugly.