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Elsewhere (63)

Stephen Hayes on Wisconsin, high passions and the caring, compassionate left

Unions and other Walker opponents have certainly shown a willingness to do anything to win. Walker and his family have been harassed regularly. Unions and their backers have marched on Walker’s personal residence in Wauwatosa. His wife has been subjected to repeated verbal harassment. His sons have been targeted on Facebook. Walker himself has been compared to a variety of terrorists and, of course, to Adolf Hitler. He long ago stopped eating out at restaurants and has stepped up security for all of his public appearances.

Kristi LaCroix, a Kenosha teacher who appeared in a pro-Walker ad supporting the reforms, received so many threats that she later said she wished she’d never done the ad. When a student at Two Rivers High School showed up at school wearing a pro-Walker T-shirt, the head of the school’s technical education program, who is also the chairman of the local teachers’ union, sent an email to the business that produced the T-shirt noting that the company does business with the school and threatening a “loss of profits.” A reporter for a liberal Madison newspaper telephoned Ciara Matthews, communications director for the Walker campaign, and expanded the definition of “news” by publishing an entire article about the fact that she worked at Hooters to put herself through college. Another Walker staffer returned home one day to find his dog defecating blood. The veterinarian who treated the dog - at a cost of $1,500 - told him the most likely culprit was a high dose of rat poison, something he doesn’t have in his house.

John Aziz highlights the even more charming sentiments of Finnish eco-radical Pentti Linkola

The United States symbolises the worst ideologies in the world: growth and freedom… Any dictatorship would be better than modern democracy. There cannot be so incompetent a dictator that he would show more stupidity than a majority of the people. The best dictatorship would be one where lots of heads would roll and where government would prevent any economic growth… A fundamental, devastating error is to set up a political system based on desire. Society and life have been organised on the basis of what an individual wants, not on what is good for him or her… Our only hope lies in strong central government and uncompromising control of the individual citizen.

It’s for our own good, obviously. Yes, Mr Linkola is rather, er, hardcore, but he’s far from alone in the nature of his fantasies. 

And Thomas Sowell on when a person’s race gets reported and when it doesn’t:  

Similar episodes of unprovoked violence by young black gangs against white people chosen at random on beaches, in shopping malls, or in other public places have occurred in Philadelphia, New York, Denver, Chicago, Cleveland, Washington, Los Angeles, and other places across the country. Both the authorities and the media tend to try to sweep these episodes under the rug. […] A wave of such attacks in Chicago was reported, but not the race of the attackers or victims. Media outlets that do not report the race of people committing crimes nevertheless report racial disparities in imprisonment and write heated editorials blaming the criminal-justice system.

On which, Heather Mac Donald is worth revisiting

In fact, the race of criminals reported by crime victims matches arrest data. As long ago as 1978, a study of robbery and aggravated assault in eight cities found parity between the race of assailants in victim identifications and in arrests - a finding replicated many times since, across a range of crimes. No one has ever come up with a plausible argument as to why crime victims would be biased in their reports.

Apparently there are even significant racial variations in speeding offences

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