Love in a Covid Climate

Constantin Brancusi, 1907, The Kiss, Credit Wikipedia

Love in a Covid Climate

 by Ilana Mercer, spellbound

There was a reason why this expatriate missed Canada of late. In particular, the every-day normalcy of its local CTV News. Often so apolitical, Canadians are always less eager to feature the caterwauling of politicians than to cover the joys of a cat rescue. Or, a kiss.

How natural, then, that a CTV Toronto News anchor intuitively ran one of the most enchanting, culturally significant little video clips I’ve seen for a long time. A young, adorable girl, clutching a tiny dog, is being interviewed about face masks in Toronto’s Trinity Bellwoods Park. Her meandering replies are meaningless. She’s just a regular, uninformed, inarticulate millennial, until…  wait for it. A dashing and daring young man with a mop of dark hair appears out of nowhere. He is dressed like the rebel characters in the film “Hair,” Milos Forman’s formidable musical. He grabs the girl and kisses her long and deep and oh-so romantically. The cute girl goes as limp as a ragdoll in his arms. Or, like Scarlett O’Hara in the arms of Rhett Butler. Every bit of her is saying “yes.” Continue reading

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Embattled Monuments

Lord Acton

Embattled Monuments

Ilana Mercer, contra “kerns and gallowglasses” 

Steve Hilton is a Briton who anchors a current-affairs show on Fox News. Mr. Hilton made the following feeble, snowflake’s case for the removal of the nation’s historically offensive statues:

It’s offensive to our Africa-American neighbors to maintain statues in public places that cause not only offense, but real distress. And it is disrespectful to our native-American neighbors to glorify a man who they see as having committed genocide against their ancestors. None of this is to erase history. Put it all in a museum. Let’s remember it and learn from it.

“What’s wrong with Camp Ulysses Grant,” Hilton further intoned, sanctimoniously. He was, presumably, plumping for the renaming of army installations like Fort Bragg, called after a Confederate major general, Braxton Bragg.

Sons of the South—men and women, young and old—see their forebears as having died “in defense of the soil,” and not for slavery. Most Southerners were not slaveholders. All Southerners were sovereigntists, fighting a War for Southern Independence. Hilton, it goes without saying, is a follower of the State-run Church of Lincoln. To the average TV dingbat, this means that Southern history comes courtesy of the likes of Doris Kearns Goodwin, a Lincoln idolater and the consummate court historian. “Doris Kearns Goodwin,” explains Professor Thomas J. DiLorenzo, the country’s chief Lincoln slayer, “is a museum quality specimen of a court historian, a pseudo-intellectual who is devoted to pulling the wool over the public’s eyes by portraying even the most immoral, corrupt and sleazy politicians as great, wise, and altruistic men.” Continue reading

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Knee Jerk Reaction

Rudyard Kipling, portrait by John Collier

Knee Jerk Reaction

From Stuart Millson, standing tall   

By the end of the 19th-century, the British Empire had achieved a supremacy surpassing that of ancient Rome. The onetime Roman colony at the edge of Europe had become the greatest colonial power in history. The eagle of the Roman legions marked the suzerainty of Caesar, from North Africa to Northern Britain – their power eventually ebbing from our island, 400 years after the birth of Christ. Nevertheless, they left a rich legacy: the foundation of our principal towns, a system of roads and ports to supply them, a wealth of trade and perhaps, more intangibly, the seeding of an imperial ideal that would come to fruition 1500 years later. The maritime expeditions of the first Elizabethan era marked the beginning of this episode.

For the people of the Mother Country in the age of Queen Victoria, the British rulers of India and Africa were heroes. Her empire engendered – if not automatic loyalty from the subject peoples – than at least a strangely long-lasting affiliation, which turned in some cases, after the granting of independence, to a form of imitation. One need only look at the ceremonial uniforms and peaked caps of the modern Indian army and its brigadiers, now facing the Chinese on India’s northern border, to see that. Continue reading

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Watson’s World

Coal Mining, 18th Century, Léonard Defrance

Watson’s World

Bill Hartley mines an archive

John Watson was a colliery viewer working in the Northumberland coalfield in the middle of the 18thcentury. His journals, written from 1750-55, came into the possession of the Mining Institute in Newcastle but beyond this nothing is known of the man. Watson didn’t always stick to a dry record of mining operations and as a result we get some insight into life in mid-18th century Northumberland.

There was no such thing as a mining engineer in those days and the way Watson worked suggested he had learnt his trade as an estate surveyor; someone who looked after the business of an agricultural property. Mining and agriculture were closely connected, with coal being another resource to be exploited. Back then an intelligent boy might be talent spotted and perhaps with the assistance of a benefactor, gain a place at one of the small grammar schools in the county. Such schools had no interest in providing a classical education. The emphasis was on mathematics. Classroom learning was augmented by practical experience outdoors, where boys would hone their skills by measuring and surveying the surrounding fields. Continue reading

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Canaille Play with Madness

Chaos, George Frederick Watts

Canaille Play with Madness

Ilana Mercer reports from “occupied” Seattle

On June 9, I tweeted out the following:

“Seattle’s East Precinct has fallen, as Police Chief Carmen Best orders Seattle Police to evacuate. The occupiers, aka the ‘peaceful protesters,’ declare victory. ‘They’ve given us the precinct,’ they boast. Not even in South Africa.”

A mere day on, and the City of Seattle is de facto occupied territory, fallen to the “peaceful protesters”—the same counterculture media darlings who’ve been sacking cities across America. The rabble—Black Lives Matter sympathizers, which, as police arrest records show is almost entirely local—was further roused by Seattle City Council member Kshama Sawant, formerly of Mumbai. Most reprehensibly, Pied Piper Sawant led the “peace makers” to occupy City Hall in downtown Seattle, on Tuesday, June 10.

The altercation between Council Member Sawant and Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan gives new meaning to the “broad” sweep of ideas in this dysfunctional city. Sawant, a socialist, called on Mayor Durkan, a progressive, to resign over abuse of power (what power?) and systemic racism (a meaningless abstraction). This, as the city was being sacked.

Surrender Monkeys
As of this writing, the Seattle Police has surrendered without a fight. Seven blocks of downtown Seattle, renamed the “Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone” (CHAZ), have been appropriated by the Peaceful Ones, with the imprimatur of the mayor and her police chief (Carmen Best aforementioned). Now loosed on the public, these buccaneering entrepreneurs are reported to have set up checkpoints to shake down residents who imagine they may come and go. Not in this satrapy. On the positive side, Seattle now has that shithole-country vibrancy. Continue reading

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Pedal Power

Jimmy Savile

Pedal Power

The Vice of Kings: how Socialism, Occultism and the Sexual Revolution Engineered a Culture of Abuse, Jasun Horsley, London, Aeon Books, 2019, 323pp., reviewed by Ed Dutton

When ‘national treasure’ Jimmy Savile died in 2011, copious revelations emerged about the entertainer’s decades of predatory sexual abuse against teenage girls. Senior figures in the BBC claimed innocent ignorance, despite the fact that there had long been rumours about Savile’s proclivities, with some of the milder forms of abuse having occurred ‘in plain sight,’ such as Savile groping a girl on Top of the Pops. This resulted in ‘Operation Yew Tree,’ with frequently fruitless investigations into other celebrities, including Sir Cliff Richard and two well-known actors from Coronation Street. All were eventually exonerated. In its worst excesses, Yew Tree gave free rein to conspiracy theorists’ more outlandish, paranoid ideas.

Some believed – on the grounds that Sir Jimmy Savile and the late Liberal MP Sir Cyril Smith had been child abusers – that Britain had been run by a clique of high-powered paedophiles. They accepted the fantasies of one Carl Beech. He posited a VIP paedophile ring that included former Prime Minister Edward Heath, former Home Secretary Leon Brittan, former Conservative MP Harvey Proctor and numerous others. Labour MP Tom Watson told parliament that he had ‘clear intelligence suggesting a powerful paedophile network linked to parliament and Number 10’ after meeting with Beech, who it turned out was himself a downloader of child pornography. Continue reading

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The Fronde of Youth

Taller Buddha of Bamyan, before and after destruction by the Taliban

The Fronde of Youth

by Stuart Millson

For many years, Sir Mark Tully was the BBC’s “voice of India”. His despatches from the sub-continent, where, in old colonial terms, “he went native”, represented the highest standards of broadcast journalism – chronicles of a country (or countries if one includes Pakistan), rather than the shallow soundbites which assail us from today’s television.

Tully became something of a modern-day, post-imperial Kipling, an English writer steeped in the languages and culture of India. And, whilst as a journalist of the post-war generation he was perfectly reconciled to Indian independence, he nevertheless reported the many complicated strands, religious divisions and political pulses which made the country and its neighbours what they are today. Tully also delighted in railway journeys across India and Pakistan – railways being one of the great legacies of the British Empire – and his observations from packed carriages of the dusty plains and engulfing monsoons of the land he loved, stand among the great travel-writing achievements of this or any time. Continue reading

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Word Up

King Solomon

Word Up

Bernd U Schipper, Proverbs 1-15, Fortress Press, 2019, Pp. i-xxvi, 1-579, reviewed by Darrell Sutton

Paremiology is the branch of study that delves into the compilation of proverbs. By far the most popular wise words from antiquity are those which were assembled throughout ancient Greek civilization. Proverbial expressions were recorded earlier among ancient Near Eastern peoples; but Aristotle collected various items for his own anthological uses. Select proverbs may put the accent on characteristics of humans, animals, insects, mythic analogies or places. Hebraic scholars have had at their disposal a corpus of Hebrew proverbs that antecede the proverbs of Hellas by hundreds of years. Sorting through them, interpreting and classifying them remains a controlled academic field of study.

This stout volume under review is the English version of part one of Dr. Schipper’s commentary which appeared in the Biblischer Kommentar series (2018). The renaissance of studies of olden sages’ statements continues. Remarkable advances in the study of wisdom literature by academy specialists were made in the last century. The gains are featured in this book. Schipper carefully compares archaic Hebrew proverbial statements to early near eastern texts, even ancient Egyptian ones. A large hardcover, the text-block is well done and the Univers 65 font is easy on the eye. As usual, the print quality is superb. The cream-colored pages are opaque enough that there is little glare; but they are thick enough that there is little ghosting of the text from the verso and recto sides of the pages. Each chapter begins with a translation of the Hebrew text. Footnotes are copious, and Dr. Schipper “allows the text’s projection of gender through its language to come through” (xxvi). The bibliography proves that he spared no pains in his investigations of sources and secondary literature. Students will be pleased with what he accomplished, for he struck the right balance in his employment of Greek Septuagint (LXX) readings and his use of Dead Sea Scroll (DSS) material. Continue reading

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A bridge too far

Baltimore riot police

A bridge too far

Ilana Mercer ups the ante 

Dr. Michael Baden determined that George Floyd died by cop. The courageous onlookers who filmed the snuff film could have told him. The nation’s foremost forensic pathologist was called in to investigate the demise of the Minneapolis man, whom millions across the world have, by now, watched slowly suffocate to death on camera, May 25.

“Look at him. Get off him now. What is wrong with y’all. Leave him. You’re killing him. Bro, he’s not moving. Check his pulse. Blood is bubbling out of his mouth”. These good Samaritans loudly protested this police porn. There was a trickle on the asphalt, as Floyd likely lost control over bodily functions, near the end.

Dr. Baden, who confirmed mechanical asphyxiation due to pressure on the neck and back, was asked to perform an independent autopsy because the initial, official one was comical, suggesting the cops’ actions were secondary complicating factors. The Hennepin County medical examiner made it sound like George Floyd should have been able to endure 8 minutes and 46 seconds with a knee on his neck and three Minneapolis police officers pushing down on his diaphragm, subsequently reducing blood flow to the brain. Floyd, he maintained, failed their “fitness” test because he was on drugs, drunk, COVID-positive, and in really bad physical shape. I’d hate to have my physical fitness and sobriety tested that way. Continue reading

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Letter to the Editor, June 2020

Letter to the Editor, June 2020

Sir,

The demographic profile of the American protestors is indicative. Predominantly late teens and millennials. Multi-ethnic, mainly urban, well-educated, with affluent backgrounds. Pre-destined for professional careers, present circumstances notwithstanding.

Professor Glayde Whitney once told me that American school children are subjected to relentless brainwashing about the putative benefits of mass immigration and multiculturalism. The upshot is that in the absence of countervailing influences, they are rabidly anti-Trump. They doubtless voted for “crooked” Hillary. They support safe spaces, no platform for “fascists” and the “de-colonising” of the curriculum i.e. censorship. And, like the Isis iconoclasts, they advocate the destruction or removal of politically incorrect statuary.

Meanwhile, the 62 million Americans in “fly over country” who elected Donald Trump have almost no voice in the fake news, main-stream media. And here in the UK, public school educated commentators such as Jon Snow and Emily Maitlis (married to an investment manager), virtue signal about black oppression from the safety of gated communities. They encourage British Blacks to emulate their enraged American counterparts.

Prediction and conclusion; the “Donald” to be re-elected with an increased majority. The liberal-left are now the stupid party. Once again, they are playing into Trump’s hands. He will swallow Zombie candidate Joe Biden whole. And, all in all, “The justice of it pleases”.

From Saturn, aka Alligator Mississippiensis

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