Aux Armes, Citoyens

Posted May 21, 2016 By John C Wright

http://dailycaller.com/2016/05/19/security-guard-arrested-for-removing-man-from-womens-bathroom/

A female security guard working at a Washington, D.C. grocery store was arrested Monday afternoon for physically escorting a man out of the women’s restroom after he refused to leave because he identifies as a woman.

The shopper — a young, African-American male who identified himself as Ebony Belcher to local news outlets — reportedly passed the security guard on his way into the women’s restroom at a Giant grocery store in Northeast D.C.

After seeing Belcher walk into the women’s restroom, the security guard followed him in and ordered the man to leave. When he refused, the security guard had to physically escort him out of the women’s restroom.

Upon leaving the store, Belcher called police to have the security guard arrested. D.C. police confirmed to NBC4 Washington that the woman was arrested and charged with simple assault. D.C. police told TheDC that they are treating the incident as a “suspected hate crime.”

He told WJLA that he believed “the woman had no reason to put her hands on me,” adding that he was emotionally traumatized by the incident. “I’m hurt by this. It’s terrible… I’m distraught,” he said. “People should not be discriminated [sic] based on their gender identity.”

Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2016/05/19/security-guard-arrested-for-removing-man-from-womens-bathroom/#ixzz49LL74WZ4

My comment: The social contract is officially broken when those entrusted with protecting the body politic from criminals who would invade their natural rights have sided with the criminals and declared for the invasion, and when discussion on the matter is no longer possible, instead called hate speech.

Anarchy is a condition of lawlessness; tyranny is when the enforcers of the law are lawless.

The courts, police, and administrators are lawless when they enforce laws that have not been passed, or enforce laws so vague that they cannot serve to tell a reasonable man what is or is not prohibited and allowed.

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Social Justice Archipelago

Posted May 20, 2016 By John C Wright

If you wish to see what your fiancee is most likely to become as years pass, meet and speak with her mother.  Likewise, if you wish to understand the modern Left, note what prior generations of Leftists have done in nations where they assumed power.

A passage from The Gulag Archipelago by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn.

At the conclusion of the conference, a tribute to Comrade Stalin was called for. Of course, everyone stood up (just as everyone had leaped to his feet during the conference at every mention of his name). … For three minutes, four minutes, five minutes, the stormy applause, rising to an ovation, continued. But palms were getting sore and raised arms were already aching. And the older people were panting from exhaustion. It was becoming insufferably silly even to those who really adored Stalin.

However, who would dare to be the first to stop? … After all, NKVD men were standing in the hall applauding and watching to see who would quit first! And in the obscure, small hall, unknown to the leader, the applause went on – six, seven, eight minutes! They were done for! Their goose was cooked! They couldn’t stop now till they collapsed with heart attacks! At the rear of the hall, which was crowded, they could of course cheat a bit, clap less frequently, less vigorously, not so eagerly – but up there with the presidium where everyone could see them?

The director of the local paper factory, an independent and strong-minded man, stood with the presidium. Aware of all the falsity and all the impossibility of the situation, he still kept on applauding! Nine minutes! Ten! In anguish he watched the secretary of the District Party Committee, but the latter dared not stop. Insanity! To the last man! With make-believe enthusiasm on their faces, looking at each other with faint hope, the district leaders were just going to go on and on applauding till they fell where they stood, till they were carried out of the hall on stretchers! And even then those who were left would not falter…

Then, after eleven minutes, the director of the paper factory assumed a businesslike expression and sat down in his seat. And, oh, a miracle took place! Where had the universal, uninhibited, indescribable enthusiasm gone? To a man, everyone else stopped dead and sat down. They had been saved!

The squirrel had been smart enough to jump off his revolving wheel. That, however, was how they discovered who the independent people were. And that was how they went about eliminating them.

That same night the factory director was arrested. They easily pasted ten years on him on the pretext of something quite different. But after he had signed Form 206, the final document of the interrogation, his interrogator reminded him:

“Don’t ever be the first to stop applauding.”

On a related topic I see that the Nebula Awards have been announced. The winners in the four major categories:

Novel: Uprooted, Naomi Novik
Novella: Binti, Nnedi Okorafor
Novelette: “Our Lady of the Open Road,” Sarah Pinsker
Short Story: “Hungry Daughters of Starving Mothers,” Alyssa Wong

Normally, professional courtesy would require me to give my congratulations to the winners, under the supposition that they had created works of merit and been duly awarded by a panel which judged the work on it merit in an unbiased fashion.

However, all the public organs of SFWA have assured me, and the mainstream press as well, not vehemently, repeatedly, malignantly and stridently, that judging Science Fiction works based only on merit is an unparalleled evil, and that I and mine are worse than neonazi bigots even to suggest such a standard.

Hence, logically, to only way to avoid accusation of unparalleled evil to judge not on the merits, but to be biased, ignore the evidence, and grant the award as a ritualized gesture of political correctness. One need not even read the work, merely note the sex, race and victimhood status of the author. (Not his real sex, race, and victimhood, of course, but only how he self-identifies.)

It would be untoward for me to assume the Nebula panel has not followed these jury instructions in this case, because that would be to assume that SWFA is guilty of rank hypocrisy.

Consider the winners of the four categories over the last five years:

  • 2015: 4/4 women
  • 2014: 3/4 women
  • 2013: 4/4 women
  • 2012: 2/4 women
  • 2011: 2/4 women

So I will not be congratulating these winners, because I would like to be the first to stop applauding.

Allow me to assume a businesslike expression and sit down in my seat. The winners have won nothing.

Ladies, the award has been robbed of all value by your enemies, who hold you in the contempt of, if I may coin the phrase, the sexism of low expectations.

They thought you could not win in a fair competition, so they gave it to you of out pity for the inability they assume, sight unseen, mars all your work. They assume this because of your sex, and for no other reason.  They are prejudiced against you, while claiming the opposite. Do not think them your friends.

Friends tell the truth. Enemies utter flattery.

***

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SUPERLUMINARY on Patreon

Posted May 18, 2016 By John C Wright

0 SUPERLUMINARY

An internet magazine hired me to write an old-fashioned space opera in the mood and flavor of ‘World Wrecker’ Hamilton to run in fifty or so weekly episodes of two-thousand word each.

However, the magazine folded and returned the rights to me. It is my wish to bring it to my fan (Hi, Nate!) directly.

The title is SUPERLUMINARY.

The plot is this: The sole survivor of an illfated expedition to Pluto finds the Infinithedron, a library of supertechnology from the alien race that created life on earth and guided evolution to produce mankind.

He returns to earth only to discover world war has decimated civilization. Rather than sharing the secrets, he uses them to conquer mankind, impose peace and order, but also abolishing aging, disease, famine.

Lord Tellus (as he calls himself) imprints each of his children with a different branch of the alien science, but the whole of it is taught to none. These Lords of Creation (as they call themselves) are commanded to create life on each of the worlds and moons of the solar system. Scores of artificial intelligent races are fashioned, who adore the children as godlike. The secret of faster than light drive Lord Tellus keeps to himself: mankind he keeps in the solar system. But what is his reason?

He goes mad, and his children rise up in rebellion, and he vanishes, leaving behind mysteries and guesses.

Aeneas Tell, son of Lady Venus, youngest of the imperial family, dreams of overthrowing the his family in favor of a republic, but when he introduces a rebel into the imperial palace for a coup, he is betrayed, and barely escapes with his life, and flees to Pluto.

Here Aeneas discovers the horrific secret his grandfather was hiding, and an ancient evil that sleeps beneath the eternal ice. Aeneas finds himself snared in a labyrinth of intrigue, striving somehow to convince his Machiavellian family to cooperate against a mutual foe none of them credit.

Read the first episode here:

https://www.patreon.com/posts/superluminary-01-5489523

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Book Bomb: NETHEREAL, or, Space Pirates in Hell

Posted May 18, 2016 By John C Wright

A rising, fresh-faced and deserving superversive author, Brian Niemeier, asked me to help promote his book, which I am delighted to do.

The inestimable Larry Correia, the Mountain the Writes, says he  read this a couple of months ago and the best way to describe it is Space Pirates Go To Hell. He adds “Only it is way cooler than that description makes it sound.”

Mr. Correia organized a Book Bomb for today, May 18th, and I urge anyone reading this to join in and support the effort.

My lovely and talented wife edited the book, and she describes it as akin to Roger Zelazny’s work, which is high praise indeed coming from her, as Mr. Zelazny is one of her favorite authors.

Nethereal
by Brian Niemeier
Nethereal

The goal of a Book Bomb day is to urge as many people as possible to buy an author’s book on the same day. The more books sell, the higher it gets in the rankings, the more new people see it.

If the book is one to your taste, buying it as the same time as other patrons enlarges the ratings on Amazon, which helps garner publicity.

A healthy Book Bomb will bring an author to the attention of hundreds of potential fans who not otherwise see his work. Amazon is preferred for its size and scope, but any purchase will help.

So please purchase a copy today, and urge your friends, allies, associates, and serfs and minions likewise.

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Ancient Epic and Future Fiction

Posted May 17, 2016 By John C Wright

Ancient Epic and Future Fiction
or
Epic Deprivation Syndrome

Here follows the notes for a speech given at Franciscan University of Steubenville an evening in April of 2016. The speech as given differs from these notes in several respects: for sake of time and clarity, certain segments were omitted, or words changed. The prose below is unpolished, for I present my readers with my raw first draft that I wrote that afternoon in haste.

 

THREE QUESTIONS

This evening I would like you to entertain the proposition that as humans, we need epics, but that in the modern age, we suffer from what we might call Epic Deprivation Syndrome.

I propose epic depravation is a disease not of the mind or body, but of the soul, and it afflicts not one men or faction of men, but whole cultures and generations. Nations can go mad just as men do.

I propose that the primary symptom of Epic Depravation Syndrome is a social pathology something like colorblindness or tone-deafness, where the moral sense of the consensus of society can no longer register correct stock responses in the face of moral qualities: it is neither attracted to great good nor repelled by great evil.

If all generations need epics and this generation suffers from epic depravation, this leads to the additional questions:

  • First, what is an epic?
  • Second why do we need them?
  • Third, what is causing the current epic depravations,
  • Fourth, what has been done hitherto to alleviate the symptoms, and,
  • Finally and most importantly, should be done to cure it.

For the hour is late, and the prognostication is grim:

I fear the final result of this syndrome, if the disease is allowed further to grow unchecked, is the destruction of our civilization and the damnation of our souls.

SKEPTICISM

Now, I hope this prognostication is so dire and dreadful that it will provoke your instant skepticism. If your scholarly minds have been properly trained by this wonderful institution, you should be thinking that it is impossible that something so frivolous as the lack of a certain type of poem or story would have such vast and morbid consequences.

Let us begin, as all proper skeptical scholars must, with a definition of terms. What is an epic?

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Pro-Islam Bias in the News

Posted May 17, 2016 By John C Wright

A reader, I assume as a joke, said that there was no pro-Islamic bias in the modern news media. But then he drew the joke on and on, asking rhetorical questions and filling in the answers he thought I should answer, and then asking questions about that, and putting additional answers in my mouth, to the point where I wondered if he were not joking, but delusional.

One of the pretend accusations is that I am parroting what my corporate masters wish me to parrot, as if, first, I am not parroting what my Vatican masters which me to parrot, and, two, as if I as an newspaperman and newspaper editor and therefore unable to notice the coverage slant.

But I recall the way the local and national papers covered of the Beltway sniper (the press universally speculated that it was an angry white male, and downplayed the religion of the shooter once it was discovered) I continue to see the way the press is unable to cover the rape epidemic in Scandinavia.

I recall the coverage from the Paris murders. Why did the Muslim terrorists go to a Jewish grocery? During the attack, a reporter for Sky News, one of the largest English-language news services in the world, said on Fox News: “Whether it was targeted specifically for its religious connotations it is difficult to know.”

A New York Times writer blamed it on Major Hasan’s “snapping” (in an article titled “When Soldiers Snap”). Chris Matthews said “it’s unclear if religion was a factor in this shooting.” NPR correspondent Tom Gjelten explained that Hasan, though never in combat, may have suffered from “pre-traumatic stress disorder.” (the world’s first example of a man being shellshocked who was never shelled.) And the U.S. Department of Defense classified the Fort Hood shootings as acts of “workplace violence,” not terror, let alone Islamic terror.

In the U.K. Between 1997 and 2013, at least 1,400 girls, as young as eleven years old, in the small English city of Rotherham (population 275,000), were repeatedly gang-raped and treated as sex slaves. The U.K. government acknowledged that these atrocities were allowed to go on due to the fact the perpetrators were British Pakistanis and the girls were white.

The author of a 2002 report identifying Pakistanis as the perpetrators and organizers of the Rotherham gang rapes and sex slavery was sent to diversity training.

Finally, why won’t the New York Times print even one Charlie Hebdo cartoon?

So: no media bias in favor of Islam, eh?

A delusion is a belief held contrary to fact held in defiance of any reasoning or evidence. For those of you who are not delusional, here is a partial list of some pro-Islamic media stories I found after one second of Googling, with links to the original.

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A Decline in Courage

Posted May 13, 2016 By John C Wright

This is the text of Alexander Solzhenitsyn speech delivered to delivered 8 June 1978, Harvard University.

I present it without comment: the thing speaks for itself. But I will direct your attention to one line, which is of particular weight and terror to me:

Such as it is, however, the press has become the greatest power within the Western countries, more powerful than the legislative power, the executive, and the judiciary.

I will also utter a note not about the speech but its audience. I observe the sad irony that, before his speech, the Powers That Be among our progressive elite master class hailed and praised Solzhenitsyn as a second Tolstoy, and, after, forbore to mention him at all. No opium-addled oriental potentate lolling on his divan surrounded by eunuchs and courtiers was ever so fickle or addicted to flattery as our modern Powers That Be, whose insolent rule over us lacks the least shred of honest authority.

A World Split Apart

I am sincerely happy to be here on the occasion of the 327th commencement of this old and most prestigious university. My congratulations and very best wishes to all of today’s graduates.

Harvard’s motto is “VERITAS.” Many of you have already found out, and others will find out in the course of their lives, that truth eludes us if we do not concentrate our attention totally on it’s pursuit. But even while it eludes us, the illusion of knowing it still lingers and leads to many misunderstandings. Also, truth seldom is pleasant; it is almost invariably bitter. There is some bitterness in my today’s speech too, but I want to stress that it comes not from an adversary, but from a friend.

Three years ago in the United States I said certain things which at that time appeared unacceptable. Today, however, many people agree with what I then said.

The split in today’s world is perceptible even to a hasty glance. Any of our contemporaries readily identifies two world powers, each of them already capable of entirely destroying the other. However, understanding of the split often is limited to this political conception: that danger may be abolished through successful diplomatic negotiations or by achieving a balance of armed forces. The truth is that the split is a much more profound and a more alienating one, that the rifts are more than one can see at first glance. This deep manifold split bears the danger of manifold disaster for all of us, in accordance with the ancient truth that a kingdom — in this case, our Earth — divided against itself cannot stand.

There is the concept of Third World: thus, we already have three worlds. Undoubtedly, however, the number is even greater; we are just too far away to see. Any ancient and deeply rooted, autonomous culture, especially if it is spread on a wide part of the earth’s surface, constitutes an autonomous world, full of riddles and surprises to Western thinking. As a minimum, we must include in this category China, India, the Muslim world, and Africa, if indeed we accept the approximation of viewing the latter two as compact units.

For one thousand years Russia belonged to such a category, although Western thinking systematically committed the mistake of denying its autonomous character and therefore never understood it, just as today the West does not understand Russia in Communist captivity. It may be that in past years Japan has increasingly become a distant part of the West. I am no judge here. But as to Israel, for instance, it seems to me that it’s been the part from the western world, in that its state system is fundamentally linked to religion.

How short a time ago, relatively, the small, new European world was easily seizing colonies everywhere, not only without anticipating any real resistance, but also usually despising any possible values in the conquered people’s approach to life. On the face of it, it was an overwhelming success. There were no geographic frontiers to it. Western society expanded in a triumph of human independence and power. And all of a sudden in the 20th century came the discovery of its fragility and friability.

We now see that the conquests proved to be short lived and precarious — and this, in turn, points to defects in the Western view of the world which led to these conquests. Relations with the former colonial world now have turned into their opposite and the Western world often goes to extremes of subservience, but it is difficult yet to estimate the total size of the bill which former colonial countries will present to the West and it is difficult to predict whether the surrender not only of its last colonies, but of everything it owns, will be sufficient for the West to foot the bill.

But the blindness of superiority continues in spite of all and upholds the belief that the vast regions everywhere on our planet should develop and mature to the level of present day Western systems, which in theory are the best and in practice the most attractive. There is this belief that all those other worlds are only being temporarily prevented (by wicked governments or by heavy crises or by their own barbarity and incomprehension) from taking the way of Western pluralistic democracy and from adopting the Western way of life. Countries are judged on the merit of their progress in this direction.

However, it is a conception which develops out of Western incomprehension of the essence of other worlds, out of the mistake of measuring them all with a Western yardstick. The real picture of our planet’s development is quite different and which about our divided world gave birth to the theory of convergence between leading Western countries and the Soviet Union. It is a soothing theory which overlooks the fact that these worlds are not at all developing into similarity. Neither one can be transformed into the other without the use of violence. Besides, convergence inevitably means acceptance of the other side’s defects, too, and this is hardly desirable.

If I were today addressing an audience in my country, examining the overall pattern of the world’s rifts, I would have concentrated on the East’s calamities. But since my forced exile in the West has now lasted four years and since my audience is a Western one, I think it may be of greater interest to concentrate on certain aspects of the West, in our days, such as I see them.

A decline in courage may be the most striking feature which an outside observer notices in the West in our days. The Western world has lost its civil courage, both as a whole and separately, in each country, each government, each political party, and, of course, in the United Nations. Such a decline in courage is particularly noticeable among the ruling groups and the intellectual elite, causing an impression of loss of courage by the entire society. Of course, there are many courageous individuals, but they have no determining influence on public life.

Political and intellectual bureaucrats show depression, passivity, and perplexity in their actions and in their statements, and even more so in theoretical reflections to explain how realistic, reasonable, as well as intellectually and even morally worn it is to base state policies on weakness and cowardice. And decline in courage is ironically emphasized by occasional explosions of anger and inflexibility on the part of the same bureaucrats when dealing with weak governments and with countries not supported by anyone, or with currents which cannot offer any resistance. But they get tongue-tied and paralyzed when they deal with powerful governments and threatening forces, with aggressors and international terrorists.

Should one point out that from ancient times declining courage has been considered the beginning of the end?
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Therefore the Law is Slacked

Posted May 13, 2016 By John C Wright

From the New York Times:

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is planning to issue a sweeping directive telling every public school district in the country to allow transgender students to use the bathrooms that match their gender identity.

A letter to school districts will go out Friday, adding to a highly charged debate over transgender rights in the middle of the administration’s legal fight with North Carolina over the issue. The declaration — signed by Justice and Education department officials — will describe what schools should do to ensure that none of their students are discriminated against.

It does not have the force of law, but it contains an implicit threat: Schools that do not abide by the Obama administration’s interpretation of the law could face lawsuits or a loss of federal aid.

There is not even a scintilla of Constitutional authority for the President of the Union to be dictating school policy on how each local jurisdiction wishes to handle mentally disturbed and sexually perverted students. This is a naked power grab by a lawless autocrat.

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Soviet Three Stooges

Posted May 12, 2016 By John C Wright

I made a references in passing to the Soviet counterpart to The Three Stooges, and a reader wondered jokingly if I meant a politician.

While that is funny, I was actually talking about three comedians who did a number of films in the Soviet Union together, including one released in America as ‘Prisoner of the Caucasus’ or ‘Kidnapping, Caucasian Style’.

The three in this case are the “Coward” (Georgy Vitsin), the “Fool” (Yuri Nikulin), and the “Pro” (Yevgeny Morgunov). Aside from being three in number, and engaging in slapstick, I myself do not see any particular parallel to the Moe Howard & company. I have read, for example that Morgunov, big and bald, “represented a traditional character of Soviet satire – Byvaly, or Experienced, a slightly dull, strong-built drunk whose attempts to commit petty crimes always failed.” (That does not describe Shep or Joe or any Stooge of the Howard type.)

The premise of ‘Prisoner of the Caucasus’ (no relation to the poem by Pushkin) is that Shurik, a lovable boob and ethnologist, is sent into the Caucasus to learn their old folk customs, legends, including their old toasts — but no one will tell him the toasts without actually drinking it. Meanwhile the head of the local agricultural collective and the richest man in town  wants to kidnap a girl (Nina, described as a beauty, a member of the Komsomol, and an athlete)  to be his bride the old-fashioned (for hill-men) way, and tricks Shurik into helping him, telling him it is an old custom, and that her resistance is pretense.

Naturally, like anyone in a comedy, the villain hires three clownish rogues to do the business rather than competent crooks. The girl, being a new soviet style youngster, manages to escape mostly on her own, albeit Shurik does show up for the car chase at the end, and a kiss.

Nina was played by Natalya Varley, who was a tightrope walker, and so could do the stunts, but her voice was dubbed in by another actress.

One funny bit of business is Yevgeny Morgunov teaching people how to do the American dance ‘the twist’ by showing them how to stamp out a cigarette.

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Animation Break

Posted May 10, 2016 By John C Wright

Every now and again, I come across a story or toon which I think could simply not be remade these days. Here is an homage to one such:

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