Radio Derb: Chauvin Sentence, The Very Model Of A Woke Postmodern General, Screwed-Up Elections, & ChiCom Centenary, Etc.
07/02/2021
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01m24s  The Chauvin verdict.  (The fix was in.)

08m05s  Thoroughly Postmodern Milley.  (General prepares for retirement.)

17m19s  The very model of a woke postmodern General.  (A cappella.)

20m48s  The bloodiest day.  (Remembering the Somme.)

24m34s  Afghanistan and national honor.  (OK, a few hundred would satisfy.)

31m01s  Our screwed-up elections.  (Can't we do anything?)

36m41s  The ChiCom centenary.  (A feast of totalitarian kitsch.)

45m03s  Pam as Maggie?  (They got me.)

47m01s  Politicizing disaster.  (Could have been worse.)

48m18s  Politicizing sport.  (One of our pampered brats.)

49m39s  Signoff.  (For Ms. Berry.)

01—Intro.     And Radio Derb is on the air! Greetings from me, your generally genial host John Derbyshire, with yet another edition—number 799—of Radio Derb, your home for news and commentary from a reactionary pessimist perspective.

There are at least three things to memorialize this week, most notably of course July 4th on Sunday. I shall mention the others as we go along. First, a couple of outrages, both of them actually left over from last week. I'm sorry: sometimes news arrives just when I've put the podcast to bed; and sometimes I've just failed to keep up.

First, my Outrage of the Week … which is to say, last week.

[Permalink]

02—The Chauvin verdict.     That outrage was of course the sentencing of Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin. This was last Friday in Minneapolis.

Officer Chauvin got 22½ years. Quote from The New York Times, June 25th:

Under Minnesota's sentencing guidelines … a presumptive sentence for someone like Mr Chauvin with no criminal history is 12 and a half years.

End quote.

So this was a malicious sentence, pandering to the mob. Officer Chauvin will be nearly sixty when he's free again.

Before the sentencing we heard victim impact statements, beginning with one from George Floyd's seven-year-old daughter on a pre-recorded video. This was a bit of a stretch, as the child saw Floyd about three times in her life. These are underclass blacks we're talking about here; they don't go in much for parenting. I would tell you what the little girl said, but she already talks ghetto English and I couldn't understand her.

A couple of people claiming to be relatives of Floyd gave statements. One of them, supposedly a nephew, told the court that Officer Chauvin murdered Floyd, quote, "in a malicious and insidious display of hate and abuse of power."

"Hate" is one of those once-useful words that's been ideologicized—like "pride," which is nowadays a synonym for "buggery."  "Hate" means any kind of negative emotions towards any group favored by ruling-class ideology, in this case blacks.

Did Officer Chauvin nurse negative emotions towards underclass blacks? As a 19-year veteran police officer, I'm sure he probably did. Underclass blacks commit well-nigh all the violent crime in our society; it would be hard for a police officer not to know that, and have feelings about it.

Everybody outside the ghetto has negative emotions about underclass blacks, including—to judge from residential and educational preferences—gentry liberals and middle-class blacks. We all do our best to stay as far away as possible from underclass blacks. Police officers, of course, don't have that choice in their working hours.

Did Officer Chauvin's negativity affect the way he dealt with Floyd? I have no idea, and I don't see how we could know. For a control we would need a well-documented incident of Officer Chauvin struggling to subdue a white guy twice his size and juiced out of his mind on narcotics. If there was such an incident in Chauvin's record, it didn't come up in the trial.

Policing is rough and dangerous work, as I noted last week. Was Officer Chauvin rougher with suspects than the average cop? There's some evidence from the civilian complaint files that he was. Did he deal a bit carelessly, unprofessionally with Floyd? Maybe.

Was he, in the words of one of the statutes under which he was convicted, was he "perpetrating an act eminently dangerous to others and evincing a depraved mind, without regard for human life"? I find that hard to believe. I doubt the jury believed it; but they were terrified for their lives and property, so they convicted anyway.

If Officer Chauvin was unprofessional, fair consequences would have been court-ordered probation and dismissal from the police force, with full pension rights. That would already be slightly more severe than was the case with the cop who killed Daniel Shaver five years ago.

That cop and his victim were both white, though; so in Jim Snow America, the whole thing was quickly forgotten.

The fix was in for Officer Chauvin from the start. One of the jurors, we have since learned from photographic evidence, is an enthusiast for the anti-white and anti-police terrorist movement Black Lives Matter. Chauvin's attorneys asked for a new trial on that and other grounds; the establishment, in the person of their stooge Judge Cahill, denied the request.

Meanwhile, as if the outrageous state sentence on Officer Chauvin wasn't bad enough, here comes the lynch mob from the U.S. Justice Department Civil Rights Division, galloping up with a sheaf of federal charges against the poor fellow.

Wait: Isn't that double jeopardy? Certainly not! Floyd was black. Chauvin's white! Don't you understand?

[Permalink]

03—Thoroughly Postmodern Milley.     This event was even further behind; it's from June 23rd.

The event was testimony given to the House Armed Services Committee by Lloyd Austin, who is U.S. Defense Secretary, and General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

The occasion of the hearing was the Defense Department's budget request for fiscal 2022, which starts October 1st. The fun of the thing, though, was the questioning of Secretary Austin and General Milley about the promotion of Critical Race Theory in our armed forces.

Rep. Matt Gaetz wanted to know what was going on with that. He particularly wanted to know the purpose of a recent seminar on, quote, "Understanding Whiteness and White Rage," end quote, held at the U.S. Military Academy, West Point.

Rep. Gaetz concentrated his fire on the Defense Secretary, who shucked and jived successfully until Gaetz' time ran out.

At that point Chrissy Houlihan, a congressperson from Pennsylvania—a woke Democrat—stepped up and yielded her time to General Milley, urging him to comment on Critical Race Theory in the military—positively, I'm sure she was hoping. General Milley did not disappoint her.

[Clip:  First of all, on the issue of critical race theory, et cetera, I'll obviously have to get much smarter on whatever the theory is, but I do think it's important, actually, for those of us in uniform to be open-minded and be widely read.

And the United States Military Academy is a university and it is important that we train and we understand. And I want to understand white rage and I'm white, and I want to understand it.

So what is it that cause thousands of people to assault this building and try to overturn the constitution of the United States of America? What caused that? I want to find that out. I want to maintain an open mind here, and I do want to analyze it.

It's important that we understand that because our soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, and guardians, they come from the American people. So it is important that the leaders now and in the future do understand it.

I've read Mao Tse-tung. I've read Karl Marx. I've read Lenin. That doesn't make me a communist. So what is wrong with understanding, having some situational understanding about the country for which we are here to defend?

And I personally find it offensive that we are accusing the United States military—our general officers, our commissioned, non-commissioned officers—of being quote woke or something else because we're studying some theories that are out there.

That was started at Harvard Law School years ago. And it proposed that there were laws in the United States, antebellum laws prior to the Civil War that led to a power differential with African-Americans that were three quarters of a human being when this country was formed.

And then we had a Civil War and Emancipation Proclamation to change it. And we brought it up to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It took another a hundred years to change that.

So look, I do want to know, and I respect your service. And you and I are both Green Berets, but I want to know, and it matters to our military and the discipline and cohesion of this military. And I thank you for the opportunity to make a comment on that.]

Where does one start with that? Well, perhaps with General Milley's uncritical parroting of regime propaganda. "Thousands" of people assaulted the Capitol building? Even lefty website Wikipedia only says, quote, "hundreds breached police perimeters," end quote.

And for a guy stuffed up to the nose-holes with academic qualifications—Princeton, Columbia, the Naval War College, a bachelor's degree and two master's—Milley seems shaky on the Constitution he claims to be defending. Article I Section 2 has a slave as three-fifths of a person for enumeration purposes, not three-quarters. Even a Limey knows that.

The General tells us he's read Mao Tse-tung, Karl Marx, and Lenin, I guess because he wants to understand what those big old communist ideologies were all about. Now, he says, to understand white rage, he's reading Critical Race Theory and he's happy that West Point is holding seminars in it.

That makes no sense, General. If you read Mao, Marx and Lenin to understand communism, why not read white advocates to understand white rage? Why not read Madison Grant or Sam Francis? Why not give the troops Jared Taylor to read, or Wilmot Robertson, or Guillaume Faye, Michael Levin, Philippe Rushton, Walker Connor, Colin Flaherty, Jim Goad, …

And I was just clearing my throat there. I could give you a booklist four times that long, General, if you really want one … which of course you really don't. If you genuinely wanted to get acquainted with white advocacy, you'd read the white advocates, not their enemies. You didn't read Joe McCarthy's speeches when you were trying to understand communism, did you?

What's the matter: You're afraid that reading heresies like white advocacy might corrupt you? But didn't you tell us you read Mao, Marx, and Lenin without peril to your soul?

Be honest, General. You're not interested in understanding white rage. You're interested in going on being what you have chosen to be: a fawning lackey of our corrupt, anti-American ruling class and a conduit to our armed forces for the dumb, crazy, illiterate and innumerate ruling-class ideology.

Beyond that, you're interested in retiring at some point in the near future and taking up a directorship on the board of some woke corporation.

They'll be fighting over you, General! To have an ex-Chairman of the Joint Chiefs on the board—hoo-eee! That'll look great on the annual report! And this one doesn't have a blemish on his record, military or political. He holds all the right opinions!

But I'm just telling you things you know, General, aren't I? Things you've figured out long since.

With all those degrees you have, General, and all that acquaintance with the classics of Marxism, you should be able to see the parallels with Critical Race Theory. Both are non-falsifiable; both just turn criticism right back on the critic.

You don't believe in the Interpenetration of Opposites? That, a Marxist will tell you, is because your own bourgeois class consciousness prevents you from believing it. Same with Freudianism, another pseudoscience. Don't believe in the Oedipus complex? That's because your own Oedipus complex won't let you.

Critical Race Theory's the same. You don't think you are racist? It's your own white fragility that blocks your awareness, you racist, you!

We've been here before, General, and no doubt we'll be here again. Crank pseudosciences, justified with hundreds of pages of gibberish, all in pursuit of money or power, usually power. Karl Popper explained it all. There you go: another author for your reading list.

[Permalink]

04—The very model of a woke postmodern General.     Wait a minute … A senior military man stuffed with academic credentials, proud of the breadth of his reading, although it seems not to have sunk in very deep. What does that remind us of? The Pirates of Penzance!

[Clip:  Opening 15 seconds of "Modern Major-General" from The Pirates of Penzance …]

No, hold on here, the lyrics need updating.

I'm going to have to do this a cappella, I'm afraid. If you don't know what a cappella means, well, that's your own benighted fault for not having read my novel Fire from the Sun. I'm going to have to fake the chorus, too. I would have hired one, but the boss said I'm already over budget for this year.

[Clears throat … sings:]
I am the very model of a woke postmodern General,
With interests extending to the deeply intellectual.
I'm well read in philosophy, both social and political —
In Marx and Mao and Lenin and—yes!—racial theory critical.
I'm very keen to understand the origins of white folks' rage.
With Kendi and DiAngelo I've ordered all ranks to engage.
By scrutiny and eavesdropping we'll purge extremists from the force:
All fans of Trump, all MAGA hats … no BLM of course.

Though very good at keeping up with all things theoretical
I'm careful not to cast my eye on anything heretical.
In short, in CRT and all that's trendy and ephemeral
I am the very model of a woke postmodern General.

Chorus:  In short, in CRT and all that's trendy and ephemeral
He is the very model of a woke postmodern General.

I am the very model of a woke postmodern General.
My incantations critical and racial I think memorable.
I know my country's evil, plagued by racism that's systemical
For which the cure can only come from studies academical.
My highest goal for every branch, as if at university,
Is piling on of equity, inclusion and diversity —
Except in thought, where someone has to separate the wheat and chaff …
 … Hmm … "wheat and chaff" … "wheat and chaff" … Ah, I've got it!
How lucky that I'm serving as the Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff!

So as you see, I'm up-to-date on all that is acceptable.
For company directorships I'm perfectly electable!
In short, in CRT and all that's trendy and ephemeral
I am the very model of a woke postmodern General.

Chorus:  In short, in CRT and all that's trendy and ephemeral
He is the very model of a woke postmodern General.

[Permalink]

05—The bloodiest day.     July 1st has special resonance for Brits, at any rate for the dwindling number of Brits who know about anything that happened before last week. Allow me to read you an entry from my monthly diary for June 2006, fifteen years ago. Here goes. All the rest of this segment is read from that diary entry.

Saturday, July 1st, is the 90th anniversary of the first day of the Battle of the Somme, the bloodiest day in the history of the British Army. They took 60,000 casualties, of whom nearly twenty thousand were killed.

The Tommies were to get out of their trenches and advance across No Man's Land towards the enemy trenches. This maneuver was to be preceded by an artillery barrage on the enemy lines.

The following is from Paul Fussell's 1975 classic The Great War and Modern Memory, long quote from Fussell:

Every day still the Times and the Telegraph print the little "In Memoriam" notices—"Sadly missed,"  "Always in our thoughts,"  "Never forgotten,"  "We do miss you so, Bunny"—the military ones dignified by separation from the civilian. There are more on July 1 than on other days, and on that date there is always a traditional one:

[Inner quote] 9th AND 10th BNS., K.O.Y.L.I.—To the undying memory of the Officers and Men of the above Battalions who fell in the attack on Fricourt (Somme) on July 1, 1916.  "Gentlemen, when the barrage lifts." [End inner quote.]

B.H. Liddell Hart, who was in the 9th Battalion of the King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, explains. Just before the Somme attack, "the officers assembled in the headquarters mess, in a typical Picardy farmhouse. Recent strain between the commanding officer and some of the others led to an embarrassing pause when the senior company commander was called on to propose a toast to the C.O. On a sudden inspiration, he raised his glass and gave the toast with the words: 'Gentlemen, when the barrage lifts'."

The battalion attacked with some 800 men. Twenty-four hours later its strength was 80 men and four officers.

[End quote from Fussell.]

[Permalink]

06—Afghanistan and national honor.     I got some pushback from listeners after last week's segment on Afghanistan.

I had noted a New York Times report that the Biden administration will relocate outside the U.S.A. thousands of Afghan interpreters, drivers and others who worked with American forces. The idea is to keep them safe while their entry visas are processed.

I observed that, based on precedents like Iraq, and given the standards of record-keeping in a poop-hole country like Afghanistan, this operation would be subject to massive fraud, and that those thousands would likely end up as tens of thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands.

None the less, I said, we'll have to take them in, as a point of our national honor, and as the price of our own stupidity.

No we won't, listeners are telling me. If these people didn't want their country taken over by the Taliban, they should have taken up arms to stop it. Screw them: we've already paid the price in lives and treasure.

Well, I was just trying to be consistent. Here I was exactly 200 podcasts ago: August 4th 2017. I was laying out my immigration policy, which I called "Derbian minimalism."

I presented Derbian minimalism as a three-layer cake: immigrants, which means people we accept for permanent settlement, guest workers, and visitors.

Here's what I said about the top layer: immigrants for permanent settlement:

[Pips]

Top layer: immigrants. I don't believe we need any. We have a third of a billion people here. That's enough. When I first came here in 1973 there were a fifth of a billion. It was a lovely country—heck, I fell in love with it. I can't see that adding a hundred and thirty million souls has made America any lovelier.

The furthest I'll step away from this position is to say: Show me, by rigorous demonstration, that we need more people. In decades of attention to the issue, I have never seen any such demonstration.

Economists eagerly tell you that more people means more national wealth. That's probably true; but leaving aside that wealth is not the sole single index of a nation's fortune, it is the case, as I've often pointed out, that Bangladesh has eight times the national wealth of Luxembourg.

The math requirement for an Economics degree apparently doesn't include the art of division.

And even if the U.S.A. does need more people, Mother Nature in her kindness has provided us with a fun-packed way to make more. We don't need to import foreigners.

I'll allow a few exceptions for permanent residence. Spouse and minor children of citizens and immigrants? Sure. Joe from Kansas City goes to Paris, meets the love of his life, marries her … hey, give her residence. Let us not to the marriage of true minds admit impediment. Solzhenitsyn? Definitely. And then, those foreigners who've helped our overseas ops, after careful vetting of course.

Refugees? No. The correct number is zero. We can do our bit to help refugees without settling them here. Muslim refugees should be taken in by Muslim countries, where they'd be happier and assimilate easily; black African refugees should be taken by the more stable, or less unstable, black African countries; white South Africans should be taken in by Britain and Holland, where their ancestors came from.

That reduces my top layer of the cake down from over a million a year to a few thousand—a reduction of around 99 percent.

[Pips]

I stand by that. I will allow, though, that the category of "foreigners who've helped our overseas ops" should be very strictly vetted, the number given U.S. residence held down to a few hundred, couple of thousand max. I think that sufficiently satisfies national honor.

The remainder, if indeed they are tens or hundreds of thousands, should be classified as refugees and settled in Muslim countries.

I shall enlarge upon this a bit more next week when I put up one of my "From the Email Bag" posts here at VDARE.com.

[Permalink]

07—Our screwed-up elections.     Another gripe from listeners of last week's podcast was, that in my segment on the primaries for New York City's mayoral election, I didn't mention Curtis Sliwa, the Republican candidate.

Yes, sorry, I guess I should have. Sliwa's a decent sort. I have trouble taking him seriously as a mayor, but at least he's not insanely woke, like most of the Democrats running.

I left him out because he has no chance of winning the mayoralty in November. New York City is more Democratic than ever. God knows why, considering the appalling mess it's in after eight years of Comrade de Blasio, but Democrats, as I pointed out last week, have an overwhelming lead in registered voters: 67 percent against the GOP's ten percent. Even if the 23 percent unaffiliated all went for Sliwa, he'd still lose. And they won't.

If the Democratic candidate, whoever it turns out to be, were to be caught on video roasting and eating a live human baby, he might lose to Sliwa. I think it would depend on whether the baby's parents were Democrats or Republicans …

So, who will the Democratic candidate turn out to be? We still have no idea, and may not know for months. Those primaries were on June 22nd, ten days ago. The main headlines in local tabloids all ten of these days have been about how utterly FUBAR the vote-counting process is.

The biggest of the many blunders was the test ballots. These are ballots run through the system before the election to test that it all works. No voter marked any of these test ballots. They should have been scrubbed from the system before real voting started, but they weren't, so they got counted along with the real votes. There were—wait for it—a hundred and thirty-five thousand of these test ballots.

There has now been much commentary along the lines of: "If we can land men on the Moon, why can't we run a quick, clear election?"

The premise there is in fact false. We can't land a man on the Moon any more, haven't been able to for almost fifty years. We are old now, old and impotent. Things we could once do, we can't do any more. In any case, astronautics? That's so white.

Leaving that aside, our vote-counting processes make a very poor showing among the nations. Way back last November Glenn Greenwald was comparing us very unfavorably with Brazil. Quote:

For the 2018 presidential run-off election that led to Jair Bolsonaro's victory, 90 percent of all votes were counted and the results released by 6:00 p.m. on the day of the election: the time the last state closed its polls. The full vote tally was available within a couple of hours after that.

End quote.

The following month, in Chronicles magazine, I raised an even more embarrassing contrast, with India. Quote from me:

We are a First World nation with a Third World voting system.

In fact that may even be a slight on the Third World. India, which has four times our population but only one-eighth our per capita GDP, with vast regional differences in language and religion, held a general election last year. The final tally of the 614 million votes cast began at 8 a.m. on May 23rd; results followed just hours later.

End quote.

Old and impotent. As a nation, we can't do anything any more. All we are capable of is to sit around and moan about our petty aches and pains: mask mandates, transgender athletes, Critical Race Theory. It's depressing.

[Permalink]

08—The ChiCom centenary.     July 1st was a big day in China: the 100th birthday of the Chinese Communist Party.

This is the official birthday, like the one the Queen of England has; scholars think the party was actually founded on July 23rd that year. The ChiComs don't take a stand on calendrical exactitude, though. One of Orwell's insights applies here: the future is fixed, but the past is changeable.

Extravagant displays of totalitarian kitsch were the order of the day: huge military parades, thousands of youngsters assembled in public squares waving flags, fireworks displays that must have been visible from Alpha Centauri.

From sea to shining sea … well, actually from the Pacific in the east to the Xinjiang concentration camps in the west rang out the old party classic 没有共产党就没有新中国 (méi yŏu gòng chăn dăng jiù méi yŏu xīn zhōng guó): "Without the Communist Party There Would Be No New China!"

To my considerable annoyance, and esthetic disgust, they've changed the words and the tune from the version I painstakingly learned forty years ago. Back then we used to sing: [sings]. That translates as

Without the Communist Party There Would Be No New China!
This song
Flew out from Mother's heart,
This song
Accompanied her as she roamed all over
The mountains and rivers of the ancestral land.

Nowadays what you're getting is:

Without the Communist Party, there would be no new China.
Without the Communist Party, there would be no new China.
The Communist Party toiled for the nation.
The Communist Party with one heart saved China.
It pointed to the road of liberation for the people.
It led China towards the light.

I think the older version was much better, more lyrical; although singing it, I used to wonder what Mom was doing with all that roaming, and whether she had a travel permit from her work unit. This new one sounds like a booster memo from management to the employees of some company that makes automobile parts.

Is it actually true that without the Communist Party, there would be no new China?

Well, it is trivially true that if China had taken some other course in the last century, it would look a lot different. And since even the most benighted parts of the world have been transformed into full modernity since 1921, I'm sure China would have, too. So yes, it would be a new China, with or without the Communist Party.

So "Without the Communist Party, there would be no new China" is a lie—just like everything else the communists say.

Without the Communist Party, would it be a better China? I'm sure it would.

There are all sorts of uncomplimentary things you can say about Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek and his corrupt family. I myself have said plenty of them. Joe Stilwell called Chiang "Generalissimo Cash My Check," and grumbled at a military conference, concerning Mao Tse-tung's communists, that, quote: "They got the General, we got the Issimo."

Without the poison of Leninism coursing through its veins, though, I don't believe China would have developed into a totalitarian state. It would have been a South American-style autocracy for thirty or forty years, then evolved peacefully into representative government—as Taiwan actually has.

The process might have taken longer and encountered more difficulties than Taiwan did—China is a very large and unruly place, not easy to govern—but they would by now have reached stability and prosperity, I am sure.

Economic development would certainly have been faster. Mao Tse-tung was an economic disaster for China. When I arrived in 1982 the country was as poor and dirty as any place in Africa; in much worse shape than the Taiwan I had visited eleven years previously.

It goes without saying that the tens of millions of Chinese who died premature deaths under Mao, from famine or terror, would have been spared their suffering. Chiang might have come up with some horrors of his own—he was not a humanitarian—but when it comes to mass murder and cultural destruction, nobody can compete with communists.

Let's just give thanks that some of the cultural heritage, at least, has been preserved in the museums of Britain and America, and of course in Taiwan's National Palace Museum.

An interesting question is whether Tibet, East Turkestan, and perhaps Inner Mongolia would have successfully broken away from a non-communist China.

Chiang, like Mao, claimed all the territories of the old Manchu Empire, including those three; but whether he would have had the ruthlessness, the authority, and the indifference to foreign opinion that Mao had, I doubt.

My guess is that he, or his successors, would have retreated to metropolitan China at last. Tibet would be ruled by Tibetans, East Turkestan would be ruled by Uighurs, Mongolia would be ruled by Mongolians, and China would be ruled by Chinese, to a vast increase in worldwide human liberty.

Communism, in China and everywhere else, has been a horrible retrograde disaster.

[Permalink]

09—Miscellany.     And now, our closing miscellany of brief items.

Imprimis:  I'm always looking for odd or amusing titbits to use as Miscellany items. I thought I'd found a doozy the other day. Daily Mail, headline: Pam as Maggie? She's got her down to a Mrs T.

The story, which of course I had to read, was about strange casting decisions for movies and TV shows. Among which, quote:

Imaginative casting has long been the hallmark of dramas involving senior British politicians. People forget Pamela Anderson played Margaret Thatcher in Young Margaret (1999).

[Inner quote.] "High-level sources informed me that, in her youth, Margaret Thatcher would sometimes visit the Lincolnshire coast, near her home in Grantham," [End inner quote] said screenwriter Peter Morgan.

[Inner quote continues.]"So it seemed obvious to me that she could well have spent the summer months as a lifeguard. So we simply had to cast Pamela Anderson in the title role." [End inner quote.]

The film chronicled the young Margaret's romance with fellow lifeguard Denis Thatcher, played by David Hasselhoff.

End quote.

I'm ashamed to say I was taken in for all of five minutes.

[Permalink]

Item:  That was a dreadful thing that happened in Florida last week, the collapse of that condo tower in the early hours of June 24th. Latest numbers I see are 18 confirmed dead, 145 still unaccounted for. Condolences from Radio Derb to all affected, and thanks to the rescuers still struggling with dust and danger in the rubble pile.

Even here, though, there is no escaping politics. Thursday this week Joe Biden spent three hours with relatives of the dead and missing. Quote from him, after the event, quote:

Interesting to me—I didn't raise it—but how many of the survivors and how many families talked about the impact of global warming.

End quote.

Well, let's be thankful for small mercies: at least the old fool didn't blame white supremacy.

[Permalink]

Item:  What about this black female hammer thrower Gwen Berry at the Olympic track and field trials in Oregon, turning away from the flag as they played the national anthem? Ms Berry had placed third with a throw of 257 feet.

I don't know how you could have a clearer picture of the place of blacks in U.S. society: the pampered, spoiled brats of America, indulged with every kind of favor and preference and get-out-of-jail-free passes, constantly forced on our attention—thirteen percent of the population but fifty percent of faces in TV commercials—yet still pouting and striking an attitude when they don't get their way.

Wait a minute, though. With guys like weightlifter Laurel Hubbard kicking down the doors of women's Olympic sports—at any rate the more muscular ones—for how much longer will there be any genuine women in the hammer throw?

[Permalink]

10—Signoff.     That's all I have, ladies and gents. Thank you for your time and attention, and a very happy Fourth of July!

To sing us out, here's Lewis Schaeffer, who does a cappella way better than I do—he can actually sing. Oh, and Gwen Berry: this one's for you.

There will be more from Radio Derb next week.

[Permalink]

[Music clip: Lewis Schaeffer, "The Star-Spangled Banner, third verse."]

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