Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Democrat politicians are not like you and me.

As Democrats decried national park openings, one pushed to front of Yosemite's line

NewsMinute 7 AM (CR)

Worried about loose rules amid a surge in the coronavirus crisis, Democrats have urged the National Park Service to stop or slow the reopening of facilities, citing concerns about the safety of employees, visitors, and neighboring communities.

That is, except one: California Rep. TJ Cox, whose Fresno district is close to Yosemite National Park.

In emails shared by the Interior Department with the House Natural Resources Committee, Cox’s staff sought two vehicle passes of the 340 available to the public for July 4. When he was told he’d have to wait in line like others, he pushed for “preferential treatment” to get them, according to a letter calling for an Interior Department investigation.

According to the emails, which were shown to Secrets, Cox’s staff sought the two tickets but were denied on July 2. The emails included his personal email address in a cc, not his official House address.

“Due to the personal nature of this visit, we are unable to honor your request,” emailed Teresa Austin, deputy superintendent of Yosemite, which has imposed visiting restrictions.

In the emails, the National Park Service sought advice from ethics officials who noted that rules bar government officials from receiving favors such as passes. One exception is for official visits.

In his letter to the Interior Department calling for an investigation, Rep. Paul Gosar, the Arizona Republican who heads the House Western Caucus, said that park officials changed the request from personal to official after Cox called Austin.

Neither park officials nor Cox and his staff responded to an email for comment or confirmation that he and others used the tickets to enter the park on Independence Day.

The emails were released by the Interior Department to the committee as part of an unrelated oversight investigation. 

Gosar in his letter indicated that he did talk to park officials. 

“Subsequent telephone interviews with Yosemite Park Service staff indicate that Representative Cox’s call resulted in pressuring the National Park Service staff to change the request from personal to professional and grant him passes," he wrote. "National Park Service staff indicate this was done due to his status as a member of the Natural Resources Committee and to film a video to accompany the Great American Outdoors Act. However, nowhere in any of Representative Cox’s official active media streams are pictures, video or professional recognition that he attended any events or visited Yosemite over the 4th of July.”

Cox did post a June photo of him at Yosemite promoting the passage of the Great American Outdoors Act, which he fought for.

Gosar’s letter to the Interior Department’s inspector general and solicitor was meant to draw attention to efforts by the Democratic Party’s leaders to keep parks closed while one sought special treatment.

“During this time of COVID when National Park Service employees are putting themselves on the front lines to keep our nation’s and local community’s recreational economy on track, we are thankful for all National Park Service personnel do for the people of our nation. It is unfortunate that situations like this arise where members of Congress appear to pressure National Park Service personnel into providing special access. Your efforts to provide this information, address these questions will help protect National Park Service personnel in the future from additional incidents and coercive pressure,” he wrote.

Transgender study retracted

A psychiatric journal made a big mistake about transgender surgery

A year ago, a massive study of transgender surgeries in Sweden claimed that people with body dysphoria who had the surgery were psychologically more healthy than those who did not have surgery.  The same journal that published that finding just retracted it.

Over the years, in large part because I lived in the San Francisco Bay Area, I met several people who had taken hormones and had surgery to turn themselves into a rough and stereotypical version of someone who was the opposite of their biological sex.  Consistently, they were the most unhappy people I had ever met.

That was a small and unscientific sample, but it was pretty clear to me that fulfilling their desire to present to the world as the opposite of their biological sex did nothing to make the people I met happy.  In retrospect, I realize that I was looking at the type of people Walt Heyer talks about in a fascinating interview with Candace Owens.

Like the people I had met, Heyer also thought he would be happier if he could have surgery and hormones that would "transform" him into the opposite of his biological sex.  The fact that he had male DNA did not stop him from thinking modern science could fundamentally change him.

The medical establishment didn't bother giving Heyer psychotherapy to see if his body dysphoria was a sign of a deeper issue.  Instead, his doctors put Heyer on estrogen and scheduled surgery.  Once on the estrogen, Heyer felt happier.  What he didn't know is that estrogen is something of a mood-tranquilizer or suppressor.  If women didn't have estrogen, they'd probably kill their babies (and I do not mean that figuratively; I mean it literally).

After the mutilating surgery, which removed Heyer's male sex organs and created a weird simulacrum of women's external sex organs, the doctors backed him off the high estrogen doses.  Suddenly, all the feelings of deep unhappiness that the drugs and surgery were supposed to fix came flooding back.

Contrary to accepted wisdom in the medical world, the damage done to Heyer's healthy male body did nothing to make him happier.  Heyer has since done whatever he could to heal his male body and now works to help people who regret having gone through the same process.

Heyer presented to his doctors decades ago, at which time increasing numbers of physicians and therapists were going with the flow.  There was no science to justify their belief that every person with gender dysphoria had to be "converted" into the opposite sex.  Instead, the science boiled down to a whole lot of assumptions, including relying upon a childlike book put together by non-scientists.

That seemingly changed in October 2019, though, when the American Journal of Psychiatry published what it claimed was a study that proved that "gender-affirming surgeries" reduced mental health problems in the post-surgical population.  This impressive assertion was supported by the fact that the study's authors reviewed a dataset comprising 9.7 million people, 2,679 of whom were diagnosed with gender dysphoria, with 1,000 the latter having surgery.  It was those 2,679 dysphoric people that the study relied upon to reach the conclusion about surgery's benefits.

Not long after, Mark Regnerus, a sociology professor at the University of Texas in Austin, noticed that the numbers were funny.  It turned out that the study's entire conclusion turned on the outcomes of just three people.  Regnerus was right — the study was hinky.

This past weekend, the journal issued a correction.  Ryan T. Anderson explains how significant a correction it is:

Well, over the weekend, the editors of the journal and the authors of the paper issued a correction. In the words of the authors, "the results demonstrated no advantage of surgery in relation to subsequent mood or anxiety disorder-related health care."

But it's actually worse than that. The original results already demonstrated no benefits to hormonal transition. That part didn't need a correction.

So, the bottom line: The largest dataset on sex-reassignment procedures—both hormonal and surgical—reveals that such procedures do not bring the promised mental health benefits.

I could have told them that.

Here's my theory, for what it's worth.  Many people who claim to be transgender prove instead to have suffered deeply traumatic events in their childhood or to have been raised by mentally ill caretakers who thrust transgenderism upon them.  I also wonder, based on nothing but instinct, whether women who get pregnant while on the Pill or shortly after going off the Pill bathe the in utero infant in an unnatural wash of hormones.

The logical thing to do with these troubled souls would be to give them hormones that align with their biological sex and therapy that helps them accept who and what they are.  Our leftist-dominated social institutions, however, are waging war on normalcy wherever and whenever they can.  If that means chemically sterilizing or castrating healthy young bodies and giving them mutilating surgery, they will.

For the left, anything that upsets the old order and makes way for the new is worth destroying lives.  After all, what's one individual's happiness when balanced against a socialist paradise?

San Fran is crawling with drugs. DA shows more concern for dealers

Posted on 08/05/2020 6:09 am

San Fran is crawling with drugs. DA shows more concern for dealers




It's clear Antifa is the military wing of the radicalized Democrat Party

‘I’m leaving’: Mazie Hirono walks out of Antifa hearing in a huff, Ted Cruz confronts her

As Hirono packed up, Cruz sarcastically quipped: “I appreciate the kind, uplifting words of Senator Hirono. I would also note that throughout her remarks she still did not say a negative word about Antifa. Nor has any Democrat here.”

(Source: Hannity)

Cruz said Democrats keep insisting that Antifa and Black Lives Matter thugs are engaging in “peaceful protests,” even though there’s an avalanche of evidence proving they’re violent, destructive terrorists.

“Just in Portland [there were] 277 injuries,” Cruz said. “We’re talking throwing pipes, throwing rocks, frozen water bottles. We’re talking hitting a federal officer on the head with a sledgehammer. We’re talking commercial-grade lasers to blind the officers. One of the commercial-grade lasers [can cause blindness]. They are pointing it at [police officers’] eyes. They have had over 30 injuries and a risk of permanent blinding.”

Cruz added: “That is what these terrorists are doing. And the Democrats not only are refusing to admit it, but they are ordering police officers not to protect [themselves or law-abiding civilians].”

Making attempted murder easier....

Gang member carries out three shootings after being freed without bail: prosecutors

He was set free and allegedly went right back to shooting.

A Brooklyn gang member, released without bail in May on an attempted-murder charge, participated in at least three drive-by shootings after he was freed, federal prosecutors allege.

Darrius Sutton, 23, was initially arrested in connection with a May 16 shooting in the courtyard of an East New York building that left a man seriously injured.

Despite the attempted-murder rap, Sutton was set free without bail the same day of his May 20 arrest. The Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office said the lone witness in the case recanted.

“At the time of arraignment, the sole eyewitness had recanted so we did not have sufficient evidence to keep the defendant in custody,” a spokesman for the DA said in a statement. “The investigation is continuing and we hope other witnesses come forward.”

Less than two months after being sprung, the purported Bloods gang member allegedly joined others in three drive-by shootings this summer.

The gunplay took place between July 13 and 14 and were just a few of the six shootings in which Sutton participated over the past year, federal prosecutors allege.

Sutton was seen on surveillance-camera footage in one of the attacks, on April 20, when he snuck up behind a rival gang member and shot him three times from the back in broad daylight, prosecutors allege.

The victim narrowly escaped death.

“The defendant’s violent spree over the last year has left at least seven individuals with gunshot wounds,” federal prosecutors wrote. “That these events did not lead to seven deaths is entirely fortuitous — the videos described above make clear that the defendant shoots to kill.”

Sutton is now being held in federal custody pending his trial after being arrested again last week, days after law enforcement officials executed a warrant at his East New York apartment. He faces up to 10 years in prison on federal charges for criminal possession of a weapon by a felon.

Shortly after he was released in May, the suspect appeared in a hip-hop music video, uploaded to YouTube, for the song “Crime Rate” by Brooklyn Rapper BK Eaz, prosecutors said.

The video is an homage to rising crime in New York City in 2020. At one point, the rapper Billy DntShootEm refers to Sutton by his alleged alias, “Blizz Meecho,” as he makes a gun-like hand gesture.

“Meecho say get him, I got him,” he raps.

Full Body Cam Video from Two of the Minneapolis Police Officers Undercuts Charges Filed By Minnesota AG Keith Ellison

Full Body Cam Video from Two of the Minneapolis Police Officers Undercuts Charges Filed By Minnesota AG Keith Ellison

AP featured image
Floyd was arrested on a forgery warrant but died after an officer placed his knee on his neck


Late on Monday, The Daily Mail posted full body cam videos from two of the officers charged in connection with the death of George Floyd.  These videos have been kept out of the public domain by Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, and now we know why.

The videos are from the body cams worn by Officer Thomas Lane and Officer Alex Kueng.  The two videos are different lengths but cover a sequence of events lasting just over 18 minutes.  Full versions are linked to below, and after the links I have comments with time-stamps referenced.

It takes about 30 seconds for Floyd to be able to follow the instruction to put his hands on the steering wheel of the car so the officer can see them.  Floyd is talking rapidly and clearly not listening to or following the instructions he’s being given.

From :30 to 1:30, Floyd fails to follow the simple direction to step out of the car and face away from the officer.  He repeatedly says “Please, please,” and “Please don’t shoot me”.  At the point he makes those comments the officer has holstered his firearm, which he only took out at the start of the encounter because Floyd failed to follow the simple comment to show his hands.

At 1:48 when Floyd finally exits the vehicle the officers move to handcuff him. Floyd’s conduct can’t be described as “combative” or “fighting, but neither can it be said that he was cooperative and compliant with the instructions he was being given.

After Floyd is cuffed, Lane turns his attention to the passengers who had already exited the car, while the Officer Kueng walked Floyd from the car over to the wall of a building and sat him down.

Lane asks the female why Floyd was acting “all squirrelly” and she said “I don’t know.”

At 3:55 there is a break in the video, and it resumes with Lane helping get Floyd on his feet.  Lane asks Floyd if he was under the influence of anything, and Floyd denied that he was.

At 4:35 the two officers arrive with Floyd at their car which was parked across the street from where Floyd was first encountered sitting in his car.  The walk is uneventful but Floyd continues to make relatively little sense in his comments.

At 4:40 Officer Kueng begins to open the back door on the driver’s side of his car, but it remains locked after a couple of efforts.  While trying to resolve the issue, Floyd begins to protest about having to get in the car.

At about the 5:00 minute mark Floyd’s protests begin to take the form of some physical resistance — not really combative but just turning his body back and forth to keep the officer from holding on to him.  Floyd is not a small man.

At about the 5:28 mark is the first time I hear Floyd claim he is “claustrophobic”.  Up to that point, he was just “complaining” about being arrested and saying “Please” “Please” over and over without context for what he’s asking.

At 5:45 Floyd says “Please stay with me man”, and Lane tells him “I will” as Floyd continues to protest being asked to take a seat in the backseat of the car.

Lane is perfectly calm and measured at all times up to this point.  Nothing about his actions or comments show him to be agitated or irritated by Floyd’s actions.

At 6:10 a second officer has joined Lane — he may have been there for a period of time and been off-camera and didn’t make a comment — to assist in getting Floyd to enter the vehicle.  Floyd says at one point “I’m getting in” but he is at the same time resisting their ability to “move him” forward into the vehicle, and the officer responded “No you’re not.”  He’s told repeatedly to “take a seat”, and he responds “I’m not that kind of guy”, something he said numerous times throughout the encounter.  At this point, he has turned around to face the officers and is stiffening his body in resistance to their efforts to push him into the back of the car.

At 6:35 he says “I’m going to die in here”, and the officer responds “I’ll roll the windows down.”  The officers succeed in getting him to sit on the backseat but with his legs still outside the car, and his upper body not inside the door frame as he continues to resist going inside the car.  The efforts by the officers are still not violent — they are simply trying to “force” him into the car by depriving him of other opportunities to move and pushing him backwards into the backseat.

There is no other way to describe Floyd at this point other than bordering on irrational.  He says over and over “I don’t wanna win”.  “I’m scared”.  “I’m claustrophobic”.  Seven minutes earlier he was sitting behind the wheel of a smaller car he was driving.  For more than 30 seconds the officers let him set there hoping he’ll calm down and slide back into the car, but he never does.

At 7:20 Lane goes around to the rear passenger door and opens it.  He then leans in through the passenger side and tries to pull Floyd into the backseat of the car.  Before he does so he says to Floyd “I’m going to try to pull you in.”  Again Lane is perfectly calm.  Floyd can be heard continuing to protest to Kueng on the other side, claiming he’s claustrophobic.  You can hear the other officer telling him “Get in the car” and Floyd’s response was to repeat the non-sequitur “I’m not a bad guy.”

As Lane is pulling on Floyd’s upper arm to pull him into the back of the car, at about the 7:59 mark I think you hear him say for the first time “I can’t breath.”   Without continuing to struggle with him, and without ignoring him, Lane pulls him all the way through the backseat out on the passenger side,  and onto the ground.

Once out on the ground you continue to hear Floyd say “I can’t breath” and this video ends.

Video No. 2 is Off. Kueng’s body cam.  It is 18:31 in length and begins inside the store that had reported the passing of a suspected counterfeit bill.  After just a few seconds the officers exit the store and encounter Floyd still sitting in his car parked across the street along the curb.  Lane goes to the driver’s side, and Kueng goes to the passenger’s side.

At 1:20 you can hear Lane say “Put your hands up” in loud voice.  This is the point in Lane’s video where Floyd keeps moving his hands down around his waist and Lane can’t see what he’s doing with them.

At 1:24 Kueng tells the front seat passenger to stay in the car, and lets Lane know there is one other person in the back seat.

At 2:20 the front-seat passenger gets out of the car — he has been talking rationally and calmly with Kueng the entire time, while Floyd was acting erratically on the other side.

At 2:34 you can see through the car to Floyd getting out on the driver’s side, and Lane moving to handcuff him.  At that point, Kueng tells the passenger to get back in the car, and Kueng hurriedly moves to the other side of the car to assist Lane.

At 3:15 Floyd is cuffed and being told to walk with the officers.  Floyd sounds like he’s crying.  He’s argumentative, asking why they are doing what they are doing, and Lane tells him “We’re trying to get you out of the street so you don’t get hit by a car.”  Kueng then takes Floyd and sits him down against the wall of a building.

At 4:40 Kueng says to Floyd “Do you even know why we’re here?” and then tells him about the call about him using a fake bill in the store.  He then tells Floyd the reason they took him out of the car was because he wasn’t listening or doing anything he was told which made the officers nervous.  ALL of that is borne out by both videos.  But just as significantly, Floyd responds in a coherent fashion.  So he’s capable of having a coherent exchange all throughout the encounter — he just chose to not do so.  While he is sitting on the ground he has calmed down and is having a perfectly coherent exchange with Off. Kueng for approximately one minute, questions and answers.

Next the two officers get him on his feet and walk him across the street to where their car was parked.

At 6:15, when they reach the rear driver’s side door, Floyd collapses himself onto the ground, and says “I’m claustrophobic”.  Now he begins to sob and make repeated comments not in response to anything being said to him.

Once Floyd is on his feet again, the officers open the back door on the driver’s side and begin a minutes-long process of trying to get Floyd to enter the car.

At the 8:25 mark, Floyd — while continuing to not cooperate — askes if he can sit in the front seat and is told no.

He becomes more erratic, more combative, and less responsive to instructions over approximately a minute as the officers attempt to “pull” him into the car from the passenger side rear door.  There is another African-Amercian man standing on the sidewalk urging Floyd to cooperate.  He tells Floyd several times “You can’t win” and Floyd responds several times “I’m not trying to win.”  This once again establishes that Floyd can understand and process the directions he’s being given by the officers and is wilfully refusing to comply.

At 9:36 on the tape you can hear Floyd say “I can’t breath” while he is in the car all alone, but still struggling against the efforts to keep him in the car.

Over the next minute, it is hard to tell exactly from the video what is happening but it looks like Floyd is using his feet to propel his upper body out of the passenger side door which is open.  The officers try to stop him from doing so and keep him in the car, but give up that effort around 10:48 on the video and pull him out of the car on the passenger side.  They lay him down next to the car on the asphalt street.

At the 11:00 mark, Floyd is talking nearly continuously.  He says “Mama” over and over.  He says “I can’t breath” over and over.  He says “Mama I love you” a few times.”  While the words he’s saying might seem significant to the press and public, the important evidentiary significance of the fact from him speaking is that he’s breathing.  Someone who really “can’t breath” is unable to talk in coherent teams because we exhale mostly as we speak.  If Floyd actually could not breath — he could not inhale — he would not have been talking in the non-stop fashion that he was.

In my opinion, problems for the Officer with his knee across Floyd’s neck starts at around the 12:00 minute mark.  Floyd is no longer struggling against the officers’ efforts.   Continuing to kneel on his neck to control his movements becomes questionable at that point.

At the 13:00 minute mark Floyd is still talking and complaining, but there does start to become a difference in his tone, and his words are a bit more limited and breathing seems to get more shallow.

At the 14:00 minute mark he’s continuing to talk.  He says his stomach hurts, and he askes for water.  He continues to say he can’t breath — that specific complaint had gone on for approximately 5 minutes at that point.

At the 15:00 minute mark Floyd is clearly showing signs of distress, saying only “please” “please” and not much more.  His breathing sounds like it is becoming more labored as the same time.

By the 15:30 mark, Floyd has stopped talking, and his movements look more like minor spasms than purposeful movements.

At the 16:00 mark Floyd is still moving, but he is not making any noise.

At the 16:30 mark Floyd appears to no longer be moving.

Starting around the 16:00 minute mark you can hear bystanders engaging the officers more and more forcefully, and by 17:30 they are pointing out that Floyd appears unconscious and is no longer moving or talking.  While they are certainly trying to “help”, what the are also doing is distracting the officers’ attention by forcing them to deal with the crowd at the same time they are awaiting the arrival of the ambulance.

I could not discern where in the timeline the Officers made the decision to call for paramedics and an ambulance.  I have read that MPD policy, as with many other law enforcement agencies, is that when a subject under arrest askes for medical attention or shows signs of needing medical attention, the officers must call an ambulance.  Some departments require the person to be cleared by a doctor at a hospital before they can be booked into custody.

At 17:15 a bystander starts to repeatedly tell the officers to “check his pulse”.  Floyd has stopped moving altogether at that point and is silent.  The failure of the officers to note the change in his condition and take action in response is an issue.

But that is not murder.

What the videos show did NOT happen was the use of any kind of racial slurs by any of the officers directed to Floyd at any time.  The officers never appeared to be angry in dealing with Floyd.  To the extent his actions frustrated them, the fairest characterization of how they expressed it was a sense of exasperation.  Floyd was a big guy.  He was not violently combative, but his “passive” refusal to cooperate and follow their directions make the encounter much more difficult than it needed to be.  And Floyd’s conduct was deliberate — there are multiple instances of him engaging in coherent exchanges with the officers and others watching the episode as it unfolded.  He heard what was being said to him by third parties and responded.  So he heard what he was being told to do by the police after he was placed under arrest and chose to not cooperate.

My expectation is that expert medical testimony is going to show there was no connection between the Off. Chauvin placing his knee across Floyd’s neck and Floyd’s respiratory distress and subsequent cardiac arrest.   Chauvin’s knee is not on Floyd’s airway. The autopsy does not reveal any damage to Floyd’s airway as a result of Chauvin’s knee.  The placement of Chauvin’s knee did not obstruct Floyd’s airway or his ability to breathe.  The cause of death is listed as “cardiopulmonary arrest”, but does not refer to asphyxiation as a contributing factor.  “Asphyxiation” refers to cutting off the flow of oxygen into the lungs.

George Floyd quit breathing while he was on the ground, and the officers should have realized that and responded to his condition.

But George Floyd didn’t quit breathing because of anything the officers did to him — at least not anything shown in the videos.