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OCTOBER 21,  2021

SHORT TAKES ON THE DRIFTING WRECKAGE – OVERNIGHT:

THE COST OF GETTING BEHIND THE WHEEL – OVERNIGHT:  Gas prices are soaring.  Voters are watching.  Democrats are sweating.  From Daily Caller:   The price of gasoline in a remote California town reached $7.59 per gallon this week as energy costs continue to rise nationwide and show no sign of slowing down.  The town — Gorda, California — is located in a rural part of the state about halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco and is known for its high gasoline prices due to its distance from other areas with gas pumps, according to ABC 7. The price of premium-grade gasoline, used for cars with engines that require higher octane fuel, in Gorda surged to nearly $8.50 per gallon.  While Gorda’s gasoline prices are often an outlier, the rest of the state and country continue to see higher prices at the pump, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA). The national average price of regular gasoline reached $3.37 per gallon on Thursday, up nearly 6% from a month ago and up 55% compared to a year ago.  Overall, the price of regular gasoline has hit its highest level since September 2014, the EIA data showed.   This itself could swing a presidential election, and can have a devastating effect on the Democrats in next year's Congressional midterms.  Of course, many fashionable Democrats like higher gas prices because they mean that the peasants out there will drive less, which in turn will mean that the planet, which is scheduled to die next June, will have a year or so more of existence.  I learned that from an environmental activist who hasn't gone outside since 2015 because he fears he'll contribute to global warming.

October 21,  2021     Permalink

 

AND THE PARENTS MARCH GOES ON – OVERNIGHT:  I've never seen an issue build so fast.  Education is now a major topic of discussion in political races.  Virginia set the tone when parents started rebelling against the way they were treated and what their children were being taught.   From the New York Post: 

More Americans are uneasy about what children are learning in the classroom.

According to a new Fox News poll released Thursday, 73 percent of registered voters say they are “extremely” or “very” concerned about what is being taught in public schools amid an ongoing national debate over the addition of critical race theory to K-12 curricula.

The survey found that the only issues more worrying to voters are inflation and higher prices (87 percent extremely or very concerned) health care (76 percent) and political divisions in America (76 percent). Issues that rank behind education on the list of worries include unemployment (71 percent), the federal deficit (70 percent), the border crisis (69 percent) and the COVID-19 pandemic (67 percent).

Republicans (81 percent), parents (80 percent) and independents (74 percent) are far more likely to say they are extremely or very concerned about public school lessons, while just 63 percent of Democrats say they are extremely or very worried about the issue.

Nearly two-thirds of respondents (63 percent) say school administrators pushing a political agenda is a “major problem” in the US, compared to 57 percent who say the same of violent threats against public school officials and 54 percent who say the same of parents aggressively pushing a political agenda at school board meetings.

School administrators pushing a political agenda is a topic of concern for 63 percent of respondents.

Around half (49 percent) of registered voters said that too much focus on race was a “major problem” in public schools, more than said the same of parents not having enough say over curricula (47 percent) and “overly accommodating transgender policies” (44 percent).

Earlier Thursday, Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee grilled Attorney General Merrick Garland over his Oct. 4 memo in which he that the FBI would probe what he called “a disturbing spike in harassment, intimidation, and threats of violence against school administrators, board members, teachers, and staff.”

Garland’s announcement was in response to a Sept. 29 letter from the National School Boards Association (NSBA), which stated that incidents involving parents protesting at school board meetings “could be the equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes” and asked the White House to “examine appropriate enforceable actions” under legislation including the post-9/11 Patriot Act. 

COMMENT:  The parents revolt is a very good thing.  Democracies turn slowly, but, when they turn, they turn decisively.  I just have the sense that the parents revolt is the start of something decisive in American life, and that the age of wokeness may have reached its limit.

October 21, 2021       Permalink

 

 

 

 

OCTOBER 20,  2021

SHORT TAKES ON THE DRIFTING WRECKAGE – OVERNIGHT:

ONE SMALL STEP – FROM COLLEGE FIX:   The University of Michigan said it will not formally investigate Professor Bright Sheng for showing a 1965 movie that contained a white actor wearing makeup to have a darker skin tone.  University officials were “considering opening a formal investigation into Professor Sheng for his classroom showing of Othello,” but they have “determined that it will not do so after reviewing the complaints against him,” according to a free-speech group.  “While it remains discouraging that Sheng has ‘stepped away’ from teaching this semester, Michigan’s decision not to launch a formal investigation into a professor’s course content was the right one to make,” the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education said in an October 19 update.  It spoke to Sheng’s attorney who confirmed there would not be a formal investigation.  “Such investigations produce profound chilling effects inimical to a university’s role as a marketplace of ideas,” the civil liberties nonprofit said. “FIRE hopes that this controversy over Sheng’s protected expression will signal to Michigan faculty and administrators that it’s time for the university to make a serious effort to protect and defend faculty members’ First Amendment rights and academic freedom.”  See post below.  We hope this action, by the prestigious University of Michigan, will be another step toward destroying woke-ism in the academy.  But the fight will be long and hard.

October 20, 2021       Permalink

 

IS IT ACTUALLY HAPPENING? – OVERNIGHT:  It's a question we've been raising regularly here.  Has WOKE culture reached its peak?  We see signs of rational elements in American society fighting back against the juvenile madness of the last few years.  Can the good guys win?  From well-known political observer Joel Kotkin at SPIKED: 

Over the past decade, the woke agenda has crested like a giant tsunami, covering virtually the entirety of academia, the media, the corporate world and even the military. The Gramscian concept of ‘the long march through the institutions’, embraced by 1960s radicals like Germany’s Rudi Dutschke, has achieved overwhelming success.

Yet there are signs that the woke progressive model may be losing its appeal, even among some liberals. The bulk of public opinion is not in progressives’ favour. In the US, activist progressives, notes a recent study, represent eight per cent of the electorate – barely half the size of moderates and barely a third of the size of conservatives. What they lack in numbers, however, they make up for with single-minded determination; progressive whites, notes the Atlantic, are the most intolerant of all Americans, led by those in the Boston area, while people in smaller towns and cities seem far more open.

The scalps of those targeted by the woke are strewn across the landscape. There’s the cancellation of ideologically unacceptable speakers, the delisting of books and the increasingly selective media coverage, evident particularly in the 2020 election and its aftermath. Yet the very vehemence of progressives, their lack of humour or grace, may prove to be their undoing.

Among Republicans, wokeness drives them further away from the mainstream media, as many of them now regard certain outlets as little more than vehicles for proselytising progressivism. But it’s not just the nutjobs of the far right. A recent Rasmussen survey found that 58 per cent of likely voters ‘at least somewhat agree that the media are the enemy of the people, including 34 per cent who strongly agree’.

‘Cancel culture’ is no more popular than the rest of the woke agenda. More millennials oppose than support cancel culture, notes a recent Morning Consult poll. The older generations are much more firmly against it. But most heartening is that those in the younger generation, the so-called Zs, are the most hostile to cancel culture, with 55 per cent disapproving of it and only eight per cent supporting it.

Simply put, what progressives are offering the populace does not much like, particularly on social issues. There’s been a record-breaking surge of violent crime, but some progressive politicians and media enablers have refused to combat disorder. Some have even embraced riots, particularly the looting, and backed defunding or even abolishing the police. This has not worked out well for the progressives. In the New York City mayoral elections, a black ex-cop won the Democratic nomination against candidates sympathetic to the ‘defund the police’ approach. Even left-leaning constituencies are horrified by crime, disorder and massive homelessness, as demonstrated when Austin voted overwhelmingly to end camping on the street.

Perhaps most important of all, the far-left agenda pushed by Bernie Sanders and the progressives in Congress – who are essentially setting up a new green, politically correct system financed by taxpayers – is failing with the public, particularly independents. Public support for big government has decreased, notes Gallup, and is now the minority position. In Ohio, a Bernie Sanders-style candidate for Congress was soundly defeated. The Biden administration continues to struggle with low poll ratings as it continues to identify with the progressives.

Race has been a particular problem for Biden. The administration has embraced the racialist agenda of the progressives built around critical race theory. Remarkably, parents opposing CRT in schools have been singled out as potential ‘terrorist threats’ that should be monitored by the FBI. Yet this parents movement seems to be gaining strength – including in upper-middle-class suburbs in places like Loudoun County, Virginia, the Philadelphia ‘ring’ counties and north Dallas, where the Democrats had made gains previously but now stand to lose ground. In 2021, the number of school-board recalls has more than doubled from previous years, according to Ballotpedia, and there are numerous legal challenges to CRT across the country.

COMMENT:  Please read the whole thing.  Is a righteous counterattack underway, or are we dreaming – turning minor events into major acts of defiance?  A good part of the answer will come at the polls.  The 2022 midterms will be the most important elections of our time.  We can stop woke culture, or let it continue to devour the United States of America.

October 20, 2021       Permalink   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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