Is The Confederate Battle Flag More Fun?

Confederate Battle FlagWhy is the left is so intent upon removing the Confederate battle flag from public display?  After all, everybody knows that outside a handful of skinheads, people don’t display the Confederate battle flag in order to celebrate America’s “original sin.”  We’ve long left slavery behind.  Well, not the race hustlers like “they’re going to put y’all back in chains” Joe Biden or his boss – not to mention perennial White House guest and tax cheat Al Sharpton and spiritual counselor to presidents Jesse Jackson.  But, by and large, everybody else.

Then there’s the point where the campaign may backfire – indeed, wind up infusing the Confederate battle flag with a new and more powerful meaning.  After all, there’s a towering example in what happened when the Confederates, refusing to leaving well enough alone, fired on the Stars and Stripes at Fort Sumter.

Yet the left is resolved.  And the real reason is not all that difficult to puzzle out.  Indeed, Richard Fausset puts his finger on it at the New York Times (July 7, 2015) when he writes that the Confederate battle flag is “a revered symbol, not only of the Confederate dead, but of a unique regional identity.”

And it’s that “unique regional identity” which is such a fork in the liberal’s eye. 

Liberals have somehow gotten their teeth into the idea that if they can destroy the Confederate battle flag, it will go a long ways toward getting the South to shut up, to abandon that unique regional identity.  Not all at once – not even the most fervent de Blasio supporter or dug in Marin County Socialist would hope for that. But at least start chipping away at the South’s pantheon of heroes, its foundation myth, its speech, its cooking,  its music, its literature, and its  engrained and peculiar  affection for the Christian religion and ornery individuals.

But much more importantly, ever so much more importantly, liberals hope that if you take that flag away, the South can be made to begin shedding its abiding esteem for bravery, property rights, guns, business, and traditional families.

Because that vibrant culture offers an attractive alternative civilization to the one the liberals have been so carefully crafting elsewhere.  There is a  windowless “box” they’re trying to get every American inside, with no heroes except those designated by Washington, no competing allegiances like church or family, no other way to live except by fawning dependence, no enterprise except what is sanctioned and intensely regulated.  The whole ruled by an elite.

But Liberals’ big problem with America is that there’s no secret police or hired mercenaries, as there were in Russia, to drive people into the box.  People have to walk in on their own.  And drawn by government benefits or the economic, racial and gender jealousy liberals forever inflame, many have.

But it’s not enough, because as hard as liberals have tried to drape the box in bright colors, it doesn’t look as though there’s a whole lot of happy going on in there.  Indeed, the sight of it produces an ever widening split between red and blue states and counties – a division that actually has more people on the red side of the divide than the blue, and so may end the liberal ascendancy.

Because the red side, typified by the South, is a lot more fun.

That’s the rub.  As a Christian, you take to heart Christ’s admonition in the Sermon on the Mount that life is good and God the Father sent it to you to enjoy, which is why Gospel music and country music, the music of the South, are so intertwined.  And while the South is labeled the land of guns by liberals, what it actually is is the land of socials and singing.  And the special joy and attraction of the South are that unlike those people in the box, whose children go one way while they go another, the Southern social is first and foremost a children’s crusade – after church, at tractor pulls and rodeos, parades and memorials, tailgating football games, high school football games.

Southern men don’t fuss over gear and then posture fly fishing; they bass fish or shark fish with their sons and daughters and grandparents.  Same with shooting. The same in a very special way with hunting.  New York State once commissioned a study on why people hunt.  It turns out there’s a number of reasons, but heading the list is culture.  In one anecdote a man explained that years after his dad passed on, he’ll set up in the woods and still get “the scent of my father.”

In the South and West, and in many counties in the North, life is all about the scent of your father.

Visit one of the huge country western bars.  To the disgust of Liberals, the young people there seem to want to grow up to be just like the older folks they’re dancing next to.  And you can’t stop them.

And that’s why liberals want to kill the Confederate battle flag.

Because Texas is more fun than Chicago, Wyoming than the Bronx, the Shenandoah than Oakland.  Coyote Ugly with a chorus line of pretty girls in cowboy hats, jeans, and cowboy boots dancing on a bar is more fun than sipping wine on the East Side.  Your home, your church – more fun.  And safer is more fun, too, than the blue-state liberal view of crime as a sociological phenomenon best addressed by counseling.  (If your child is being raised in an Obama county, you have several times the chance of being murdered than a child raised in a county that voted for Romney.)

And despite the trembling politicians and weathervane corporate business leaders, conservatives can take heart in the fact that the liberal anti-battle flag campaign doesn’t appear to be working.  Not among the folk.  Indeed, to the contrary; otherwise, the big New York-based online flag retailer American Flags wouldn’t have posted the following advisory on its website:

Please be advised that due to unprecedented demand for our confederate flags, shipping may take several weeks.  We do, however, have them in stock and orders will be shipped in the order they are received, so reserve your confederate flag today!

Utica, German Flats and Adam Helmer

On the way back from a weekend in the Adirondacks I opined to my daughter that the original name of Utica New York was German Flats.

Then I got home and looked it up.

Technically I was right about Utica’s original name in that at one time it was considered part of German Flats

But Utica itself was a name picked out of a hat in 1798. Before that the exact place was called Fort Schuyler and prior to that the Mohawk Indians called the ground (where there was an Iroquois village) Unundadages (“around the hill”) for the easy fording of the Mohawk River at the spot.

German Flats or Flatts the center of the widely spaced town of colonial days was more properly the name of a settlement about 15-20 miles east now called Herkimer in honor of the General Herkimer who led the Americans in the savage battle Of Oriskany close by present day Utica.

That town center (German Flats) was wiped out on September 17, 1778 when the Mohawk chief and Loyalist leader Joseph Brant lead a force of 150 Iroquois Indians and 300 Loyalists in a surprise attack wherein he captured hundreds of head of cattle and sheep before setting fire to every house, barn and mill.  A total which reached 63 houses, 57 barns, three gristmills and one sawmill although the residents themselves survived by taking refuge in their fort.

Adam HelmerIt was this raid which Adam Helmer, warned of in his famous run and so gave the people enough time to get to the fort.  But the run was not as legend has it twice a Marathon distance but only nine miles.

So live and learn. But while there was a time I could have run, and did, nine miles I don’t think I could have with musket balls singing by my head, tomahawks thrown at my head and arrows shot at my back all the while fording streams and dodging around trees and rocks.

So he was still pretty tough and he did save a lot of people from a horrible death not to mention a hundred or so children from being carried off to either slavery or forced adoption into an Iroquois tribe.

What Sort Of Parents Should We Be?

Dad And Rock WallIn the next two months I’m to release a new book entitled What Sort Of Parents Should We Be?  Look for it.  Below follows its introduction.

Today’s Moms and Dads confront a bewildering array of contradictory, endlessly repetitive, unworkable and on occasion, very dangerous advice from the “professionals” you’d think would know better. A farrago of rules, measurements, checklists and recommended therapies, diets and nostrums, clever or not so clever stratagems, even suggestions about mood altering medications to slow their children down.

This is because there are two flawed and closely related nineteenth century theories still confusing these “professionals.” The first is that childhood is some sort of disability or psychologically perilous condition which must be treated.  The second is that having a child has no purpose higher than the care of that child.

Neither is true. Childhood is a normal and natural condition of life for which Providence has prepared children very well.  Indeed much better than most young parents realize.  And insofar as the second point goes while we love our children and would give our lives for them caring for a child is not a purpose, instead it’s a means – the means by which we create a family.

And it’s with the idea of family that you see just how ridiculous these two theories are. Because in the former case what they advocate is not a family but some sort of home based mental health clinic and in the latter a bizarre relationship in which parents have all the responsibility, children none and grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and close family friends – no role at all.

Which is why you see more and more grandparents moving on to some retirement village somewhere while grown children never stop living at home and demanding things of their parents. And/or blaming them for the deficiencies and lack of future in their own lives.

With never a way out because these two, essentially insane, theories, reinforced by any amount of medical sounding mumbo-jumbo, insist that any attempt by parents to exert any authority, say by requiring children to embrace some degree of personal responsibility, is unfair, even abusive. Because they tell us, again and again and again, that a child’s psyche’ can be irreversibly damaged by being told what to do or pushed out of the nest.  At any age.

Yet even a five year old understands that children should grow up, that parents and children are on a journey together and that a ship without a captain is never going to reach port. Indeed both common sense and the experience of millennia teach us that it is only through the use of natural authority or some combination of leadership skills, encouragement and trust that anything truly worthwhile ever gets done.   Including as Will Durant put it the very important task of “civilizing” a child.

So in the interest of getting the worthwhile done, and parents producing exceptional children, it is my hope that the series of bullet point provocative short essays in What Sort Of Parents Should We Be inspire Moms and Dads everywhere nwith a more comprehensive view of what their role is.  And of their powers.


Best Wishes,

Richard F. Miniter



Richard F. Miniter

Moslems – The Indians’ Revenge?

If you’re like I am, your early education encouraged certain assumptions about why European settlement triumphed in North America.  They go something like kenschmidtthis: the Indians had no written or common language, while Europeans possessed both plus a broad range of technologies including firearms, cannon, implements of iron and steel, domesticated animals, and woven cloth.  Rum figured in in a big way, too, because Indians had no head for it.  And social organization itself may have been yet a bigger factor, because the natives practiced an “every man a king” sort of tribal democracy instead of an effective government of laws and legislatures and had no tradition of military discipline.

Yet a closer look tells us that these common assumptions don’t pass muster.   First, if having a written language really matters that much, how did the illiterate barbarians conquer Rome or the mostly illiterate Mongols conquer so much of the Earth’s landmass?  Technology?  Well, an interesting perspective on that from accounts of the time is that Indians embraced Western technology rather quickly and rapidly became, for example, better horsemen and even better shots.  Then there’s the fact that the technology question cuts both ways, because they were already better farmers – maybe the best agronomists in history.  Diaries written on the Sullivan expedition behind the lines in Iroquoia during the revolution report not only the colonial farm boys’ amazement at Indians living in better homes, but at the cattle, the orchards, the sixteen-foot-high corn in vast fields.

And as far as war-fighting ability goes, one might want to consider the comments of Sir William Johnson, Indian superintendent, a British major general, victor of the battle of Lake George, and the veteran of a hundred frontier skirmishes.  He once wrote that “[g]entlemen talking so slightly of Indians … would fly before a handful of them.”

An opinion borne out by countless accounts of streams of white settlers running for the rear, dragging their children and family dog behind them, whenever there was a rumor of frontier war.

Rum and later whiskey were of course big, as was the fact that the whites tried and sometimes did manage to deny Indians gunpowder and other items of manufacture.  But the more we examine the question of the Europeans’ triumph, we find that at the end of the day, the deciding issue was numbers.

A horrible catastrophe began to destroy the Indians’ overwhelming advantage in this regard some years before the first permanent European settlement.  Indeed, demographers now suggest that there were a lot more American Indians north of the Rio Grande than the three to five million we were taught about in grade school – maybe as many as there were people in all of Europe.  But at least nine out of ten of all those men, women, and children were wiped out by the spread of European diseases, which came ashore after the first fishing boats from Portugal, France, and Bristol reached the Grand Banks in the late fifteen-hundreds.  This is an unimaginable horror, which continued right up until the time of Lewis and Clark (see the Mandans).

In sum, there was a continuing human calamity in this “new” world about to be settled that dwarfed the Black Death, the Mfecane in Southern Africa, and any Chinese famine we know of.  Without it, there never would have been a United States.  Look at how long the six nations held up settlement in New York for generations with less than a thousand warriors.  Or the way in which the Comanche kept a grip on west Texas with a similar number.

But there’s a further dimension to the issue, because despite the horrendous fall in the population of native Americans, it still wasn’t until approximately 1750 (?) that the Europeans had an absolute advantage in numbers.  So given any sort of similar natural increase in both populations, the American Indian should have been able to hold his own or least keep his hand on a big piece of the continent right up until today.

So what happened?  The answer is something very tricky, so tricky we don’t quite understand it: that whether it was culturally bred out of them by several centuries of plague or not, native Americans couldn’t or wouldn’t increase their remaining population.  Indeed, some seem to have chosen not to in some strange manner – much as the Japanese and white Europeans and upper-class Americans today tend to have less than even the 2.1 children necessary for replacement.

This means that the outcome of the struggle between Europeans settlers and native-Americans was foregone. 

Because the difference between the two races’ population change wasn’t marginal, it was huge.  Take James Polk, former speaker of the House and eleventh president of the United States, who had a pioneer grandfather named Ezekiel.  The man had eight children, eighty grandchildren, and eight hundred great grandchildren before he died.  He could clear land in some wilderness valley without a neighbor or anybody else within a day’s travel and then, at the end of his life, saddle up and ride by thirty miles of his descendants’ farms.

How do you beat that with your one or two children, one or two grandchildren and great grandchildren?  Answer: you can’t.  Your people are just going to have to give way regardless of the fact that you’re a better farmer or warrior.  Or in the right of it.

It’s one of the great lessons of history we have to keep learning.  Rome fell because its population decreased both in absolute terms and relative to the barbarian tribes surrounding it.  The lustful Vikings colonized France, Sicily, England, even what is now western Russia.  (Rus means red, a common Viking hair color.)  Much the same thing happened in ancient Greece with the Dorians.  In fact, these invasions and takeovers were going on in pre-historical times, with what we call the Axe-Men moving west into Europe and the Bantu spilling east and south out of west central Africa.

But the particular lesson of America is that a successful colonization does not have to begin with a Mongol horde or a hundred Viking ships chock-a-block with fair-haired Norsemen waving axes.  All it takes is a foothold.  The main criterion beyond that is simply a reluctance or refusal to assimilate, maybe out of a sense of superiority, and a higher birth rate.

Exactly the two traits displayed by Moslem immigrants…and dismissed by the liberal politically correct establishment.

Two Immans Murdered in NYC – Moslems Blame Trump

Two Immans were murdered in Ozone Park yesterday shot execution style on the street after that dry face washing prayer thing of theirs during which women are segregated and have to shut up.

suspect in murder of immansFollowing the killings thousands of Moslems gathered in the street to protest while blaming Trump. Puzzling because if a follower of Trump shot them this would make the two martyrs who would have immediately ascended into heaven where they would spend eternity raping virgins.  So it strikes me that if they really believed this was a “hate” crime they should have been celebrating instead. Breaking out the peach brandy they insist is alcohol free  and roasting a goat right there on the sidewalk in Queens.

However if a Trumper shot them he had to have been one of those rare swarthy Moslem looking followers of The Donald because the NYPD, who is often very good at this, released a sketch.

UPDATE:  Police arrested a Hispanic who apparently assassinated them in revenge for an earlier Moslem attack on Hispanics.  The story continues to reveal itself.

UPDATE:  Witnesses could not pick the suspect out of a line-up and apparently the sketch shows glasses he didn’t wear.  So despite being confirmed at the scene by a traffic accident this guy might walk.

Orders From Marine Commandant Neller August 2016

“You’re going to live out of your pack. You’re going to dig a hole, you’re going to camouflage, you’re going to turn off all your stuff, and you’re going to sit there and try to sleep,” Neller said. “And you’re going to try not to make any noise, and you’re going to have absolutely no signature. Because if you can be seen, you can be attacked.”

Libraries And The Bible

BibleJames LaRue, who directs the American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom (an especially moronic oxymoron if there ever was one), has recently listed The Bible as a “challenged” book – which should cause us to think deeply about why liberal intellectuals want to take the Bible not only out of school, hotel rooms, and courthouses, but also out of public libraries.

Yet not the Quran?

The answer turns out to be very simple and, to the liberal mind, completely logical.  The Quran does not represent the civilization they resent.  That is, they want to dump the Bible and keep the Quran for the same reason they want to teach minorities about themselves instead of about Western civilization, which alone among the other cultures of the world offers them safe harbor.  For the same reason they wish to rid themselves of the biographies of the great industrialists of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries who raised everybody’s standard of living so dramatically, the study of pioneers, of the British Navy and Pax Britannica and world trade.  For the same reason they wish to expunge words they do not approve of from our speech and writing, the same reason they wish to destroy Christian crosses in the public square and statues of American heroes, storytellers, and founders of great American institutions.

All of these and many more ubiquitous symbols, text, speech, and visuals represent an ongoing immersion course in Western history and culture.  As long as they’re up there in our daily lives, it’s as though we’re sitting in Grandma’s living room surrounded by walls of family photographs and listening to stories about that family.

Our family.

This is something liberals can’t stand, because there’s no photo of them on those walls.  Their left-wing theories didn’t invent the electric light or heavier-than-air flight, nor did they break the land and make it livable.  They didn’t drive the spikes on any transcontinental railroad.  They didn’t do any of that.  And on the rare occasion America paid any attention to their blathering, it was always a disaster.  So they loathe any comparison between those like themselves, who only theorize, and those who actually act out their individual dreams and salvation.  They loathe any idea, that is, of an America that exalts the individual.

And all this even as these same liberals scramble after the salaries and prerequisites, the sabbaticals, new government jobs, and pensions society may provide them.

Just like obnoxious teenagers who disparage their parents, seek to diminish them in public and among their friends, incessantly lecture them on how they should behave or speak – in short, make their home life a misery.

Yet they demand a heftier allowance.

So maybe it’s time to pack their bags, show them the door, and let them find their own way in the world.

Judging by the looks of Hillary, Bernie Sanders, Bill Ayers, Nancy Pelosi, Barbara Boxer, The Rolling Stones, and your average hippy today, they’re certainly old enough.

We deserve the peace and quiet.  Indeed, it’s the oldest library rule – which in turn is probably another reason liberals want to destroy them.