« Thinking about systematicity open thread | Main | The Conservative Case for Universal Basic Income »

November 18, 2021

Comments

Wow! That is all.

Somehow, Wow! seems . . . inadequate.

If it is going to result accelerations of 10,000g (per the article) it isn't going to be viable for people. But for electronics and other inanimate objects, it would be a game changer.

Previous (experimental) ground-based systems were multi-stage gas cannons shooting more or less tangential to the surface of the Earth. Those were also only suitable for micro satellites due to high acceleration.
Likely no purely* ground based system will ever be able to launch living humans into space.
Assuming a suitable acceleration to be 10 g, it would rerquire about 80 s to reach orbital velocity (7.9 km/s). If I am not mistaken that would require a catapult 320 km in length.

*I do not consider the space elevator to be purely ground-based.

Somehow, Wow! seems . . . inadequate.

You probably don't appreciate how loudly I wrote it.

You probably don't appreciate how loudly I wrote it.

Tone deaf: that's me.

Well, good luck to them.
My bet is that to get to orbit, they'll need to have their launcher set up at a relatively high-altitude location...because, unlike rockets, the velocity is highest when the projectile leaves the launcher, which is also where the air density and drag is highest.

At last we see why China is so adamant to hold onto Tibet!

This is an interesting device, but it seems to be mainly about giving a major part of initial velocity for the projectile on the ground. The acceleration to the orbital speed takes place with an ordinary rocket. In a full-scale device, the initial speed would be around 8 km/s, which is a lot but still sort of manageable. However, the centrifuge will only provide about 1/4 of the speed, that is, only 1/16th of the energy. The rest will come from the rocket.

Obviously, a ground-based system based on giving an orbital speed at the ground is utterly impractical, because it means your projectile will be experiencing speeds above Mach 20 in the troposphere. Most of your projectile design will be about surviving that initial phase, and most energy will be used to counter drag.

Now, in this test, the projectile was not equipped with a motor, and it was launched at 20 % "power", whatever that means. In any case, the flight was entirely atmospheric.

So, while this is an impressive engineering achievement, colour me sceptic. You can get very much the same result but with much smaller accelerations, by flying to the stratosphere and igniting your motors there.

wait until the pumpkin-chunking crowd gets a load of this!!

In other kinds of spin, today the United States got its first woman (acting) President. (Biden being under anesthetic for a routine colonoscopy.)

Those businesses which claim serious concern for human rights, but continue to muzzle themselves when it comes to China, might want to compare themselves to the Womens Tennis Association.

The WTA has embraced China, and Chinese tennis players, for a couple of decades. They hold major tournaments there. They have sponsorships from China. The financial impact of confronting the Chinese government will not be trivial for it. But in the matter of Peng Shuai, WTA CEO Steve Simon said

We're definitely willing to pull our business and deal with all the complications that come with it. This is bigger than the business.
More businesses should have the same courage to go for real action, not just spin.

The little f**ker got off completely.

when your defense team includes the judge, you've got a good chance to getting off completely.

We are all going to be *even more* up to our eyeballs in gun toting right wing vigilantes ready and willing to shoot people to protect stuff and call it self defense.

At some point the people being shot are going to have nothing to gain by exercising restraint - having already been cast by the judges as arsonists and vandals who cannot be considered victims - and just start shooting back, or shooting preemptively, knowing that they will not ever receive the same protections afforded to the vigilantes.

The right wing is working to make their violent fantasy an unavoidable reality.

I think we can say now that we have crossed over into our own version of The Troubles. I don't think violence is unavoidable anymore.

Make that "I don't think violence is avoidable anymore."

I don't think violence is unavoidable anymore.

...

Make that "I don't think violence is avoidable anymore."

Sadly, I suspect you are correct. The only uncertainty is whether it spreads across the entire country. Or is localized.

And whether it is localized to blue areas or red areas. Because I can see some seriously fed up liberals deciding that a little "(un)civil disobedience" in some seriously conservative enclaves can't do any harm (their reputations for violence being already, however inaccurately, set there) and might do some good.

The little f**ker got off completely.

Well, he wasn't on trial for being a dumbass.

Another antidote to the Ann Applebaum piece, this one by Larison.

https://responsiblestatecraft.org/2021/11/19/anne-applebaum-is-peddling-a-democracy-trope-and-no-one-is-buying-it/

Larison was fired by TAC some months ago. They just carried a piece by Bacevich. Otherwise it is mostly just a platform for hysterics like Dreher.

pithy

This is kind of a naive question, but is there an impartial summary of the facts in the Rittenhouse case lying around somewhere that someone could read who has mostly ignored it?

Wiki seems pretty impartial: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kenosha_unrest_shooting

a few fact checks: https://www.factcheck.org/2021/11/rittenhouse-testified-he-drove-himself-to-kenosha-without-weapon/

If there's an impartial summary of the facts, it certainly won't comport with any of the narratives everyone's been fed.

Is an appeal possible?
No matter what the actual outcome, the judge's behaviour should be ample reason to call the validity of the trial itself in question.
The way it is now we have the worst of all worlds. The trigger-happy RWers will see it as precedent* in their favor and the other side will lose even more trust in the judicial system. Without the judge's antics an acquittal would have hurt emotionally but not necessarily damaged the system itself (in particular, if it had been an acquittal second class).

* we now have a de facto precedent that self-defense by other means than firearms are invalid and justify deadly force by means of firearms against those that try.
(with the corollary that it applies only to white shooters. But that goes without saying).

Is an appeal possible?

Not in US criminal law. A possible but unlikely alternative would be a federal civil rights violation trial.

No matter what the actual outcome, the judge's behaviour should be ample reason to call the validity of the trial itself in question.

There've been reports that the judge's actions were consistent with his decades-long career and not exclusive to Rittenhouse.

The prosecutor appeared to be at best incompetent.

IANAL but as far as I can tell it was reasonable for the jury to find Rittenhouse innocent. Because there is no law against acquiring a semi-automatic rifle, walking into a chaotic and violent situation, appointing yourself the free-lance guardian of somebody else's car lot, and then killing anyone who you get in conflict with if you feel threatened by them.

The legitimacy of heavily armed, self-appointed vigilantism as a form of public safety is now established. As if it needed establishing.

Welcome (back) to the wild west. It's gonna get worse, maybe a lot worse, before it gets better. Maybe it won't get better.

There've been reports that the judge's actions were consistent with his decades-long career and not exclusive to Rittenhouse.

Oh, OK then.

CharlesWT: If there's an impartial summary of the facts, it certainly won't comport with any of the narratives everyone's been fed.

What narratives have you "been fed", Charles? Or are you separate from "everyone"? Or do you have direct personal knowledge of the events somehow?

The MAGAt punk went looking for trouble far from home. Is that something you, the Un-Fed, have doubts about?

--TP

A question:

Let's assume the public protests we've seen over the last couple of years will continue.

Let's assume that, as has happened, some folks decide that protestors in the street are an inconvenience, and decide to drive directly into the crowd.

And then let's assume that someone in the crowd is armed and shoots and kills the driver. To avoid, for example, being run over.

Who thinks a claim of self-defense will have the same outcome as was given to Rittenhouse?

The bottom line takeaway from this is that the justice system in the US is aligned in such a way that:

anyone carrying and pointing a gun the same direction that the cops are facing, at the people the cops are watching, will be viewed with generosity and sympathy by the courts and by jurors, and will be supported by RW donations the whole way through.

Anyone who is facing towards the cops (or that the cops fear will turn back towards them) who's carrying anything in their hands, or that brandishes a weapon at anyone pretending to be a cop, is completely screwed with both the judge and the jury, assuming that they were not already killed.

What narratives have you "been fed", Charles?

Not many. I haven't paid much attention to the whole thing except to notice that there were a lot of narratives from all sides flying about.

The MAGAt punk went looking for trouble far from home.

I suppose some people might see 20 miles as far from home. Rittenhouse had close relatives including his father living in Kenosha. He had previously had a job there while living with a friend there.

TBH I had no expectation that he'd be found guilty on any of the murder charges.

Innocent on recklessly endangering safety is FUBAR.

There've been reports that the judge's actions were consistent with his decades-long career and not exclusive to Rittenhouse.

The only remedy here would be for him to be kicked off the bench. Which is theoretically possible, but would require something more than mere incompetence. Especially if a significant number of his fellow lawyers in the state agree with his biases.

He won't be kicked off the bench. He will likely suffer no consequences whatsoever.

This country is incapable of imagining ways to resolve conflict that don't involve violence.

Go ahead, prove me wrong.

I haven't paid much attention to the whole thing except to notice that there were a lot of narratives from all sides flying about.

Is this some kind of "ignorance is objectivity" argument? The basic facts of what happened aren't in much dispute. The bits that are, or at least the ones some people are wrong about (like when he got the gun) aren't important. Some people just think what happened was okay and some people don't.

I suppose some people might see 20 miles as far from home. Rittenhouse had close relatives including his father living in Kenosha. He had previously had a job there while living with a friend there.

Which has f**k all to do with anything. You don't accidentally end up in a particular place 20 miles from your house carrying a rifle at the particular time of a protest/riot just because you have some association with that place.

Well, he wasn't on trial for being a dumbass.

He actually was, at least in part. This:

Innocent on recklessly endangering safety is FUBAR.

Which has f**k all to do with anything.

Some of the narratives presented him as a nutcase who happen to notice in the news and on social media that things were happening in Kenosha and decided to join the fun.

What happened was that the dumbassery of a bunch of people reached a critical mass and three people were shot, two killed.

Some of the narratives presented him as a nutcase who happen to notice in the news and on social media that things were happening in Kenosha and decided to join the fun.

Somehow, I missed that one. Although I did see some which suggested that he saw what was happening in Kenosha and decided to get a gun and go shoot some of the rioters. Or people who looked like rioters. Or just looked like people he expected to riot. Which he then did.

And lumpen dumbassery - unparseable, but indisputable - joins the conversation. Vote for your favorite candidates for dumbass. Apportion them as you wish between the living and the dead.

We can all agree as long as we don't compare notes.

One of the things I learned long ago (when I lived where there were riots): if you see/hear that there is a riot, GO AWAY (unless you are law enforcement assigned to deal with it). If you can't go away, shelter in place. Do not go out into the streets to see for yourself. Do not go out for the excitement -- and back in the day I did know daft kids who did just that. (Empty handed, it being a different time and them not being gun nuts.)

So my sympathy for someone who not only goes out into their neighborhood, but drives half an hour in order to see the riot? Damn little. My willingness to accept that he was not responsible for the situation he found himself in? Nil. If you run into the path of a western firestorm, you get no sympathy if you get burned to a crisp, or even just suddenly notice that you are at risk of getting burned.

...three people were shot...

Why the agentless construction? The identity of the agent is not in doubt.

After I posted the Abigail Thorn PhilosphyTube vid,
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ATITdJg7bWI

I'm waiting on this book

https://history.stanford.edu/publications/agnotology-making-and-unmaking-ignorance

I read the Wikipedia piece cleek linked. My impression was of a bunch of guys who all imagined they were heroes acting like thugs.

Frankly I’d jail everyone involved, Rittenhouse included, except two are dead. Everyone involved had agency and they all made bad choices. Rosenbaum chased Rittenhouse and tried to take his gun. Rittenhouse shot him. . Why do you chase someone with a gun if you aren’t a cop and are not armed? This seems to be a pattern. The other person he killed was trying to take his gun. Another hero pointed a gun at Rittenhouse and Rittenhouse shot him.

I don’t actually see victims here. I see a bunch of people engaged in street violence and all of them were recklessly endangering anyone within range.. Rittenhouse, a moronic teenager, goes to a riot carrying an assault rifle and then spends his time running away and shooting people who try to take his gun. And various geniuses think it was a good idea to attack a teenager with an assault rifle not considering the possibility that some genuinely innocent bystanders could get shot. One of these heroes, if I understand the Wikipedia piece correctly, was carrying an illegal firearm.

To be clear, though I think I was, Rittenhouse should be jailed. This NYT piece makes the point very well— Rittenhouse brought a gun to a riot in order to defend himself and then shot people who tried to take his gun, fearing that if they got it they would shoot him. But I don’t think he is a murderer. I think he is a moron and should be held accountable, along with his attackers ( the ones he didn’t kill.)

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/11/17/opinion/kyle-rittenhouse-guns.html

I do agree that if Rittenhouse were Black he’d have been killed or else arrested, convicted and put away for life. Just reading the NYT and that seems to be the left take. Seems pretty self evident.

I was happier when I completely ignored this case. Ignorance isn’t bliss, but it has its perks.

Btw I raised the point about agonotology not to call anyone out, just to point out that it seems to apply here.

At the start of the trial, when the judge said that the people Rittenhouse killed couldn’t be called victims, I said, in response to a few friends FB posts (real friends, not the pale facebook imitations) that I was going to wait a bit because I thought/hoped that the judge was just being cautious to prevent a mess mistrial, but later reporting suggests that wasn’t the case.

I do think an agonotological approach (can’t say an ‘ignorant approach’, right?) is more appropriate for individual cases, otherwise you are going to overstep and demand people explain what kind of countertops they have (hope that ref isn’t too obscure)

This Rittenhouse verdict gives me a great sense of freedom as we enter the most savage civil war in the history of western civilization.

https://jabberwocking.com/wisconsin-wants-to-put-republicans-in-total-control-of-elections/

We can now deal by every means and with utterly open-ended NRA God-given impunity against the subhuman, genocidal vote-stealing conservative enemies of dead fucking America.

Why do you chase someone with a gun if you aren’t a cop and are not armed?

Being bi-polar and clinically depressed may have been a factor. He had been released the day he was shot from a hospital where he was being treated for a suicide attempt.

There are lots of ways to deal with belligerent people. If you don’t have the skill set to deal with belligerent, worked-up people, large demonstrations and riots are not the place for you to be. If the only way you know to deal with belligerent people is to shoot them, you probably should not be allowed to carry a gun.

There are lots of mentally ill belligerent people running around out there. Maybe we should just shoot them all.

The other person he killed was trying to take his gun. Another hero pointed a gun at Rittenhouse and Rittenhouse shot him.

At that point Rittenhouse was an active shooter, in the middle of a riot, running away from the scene where he had just killed someone. Hard for me to say whether we should say Huber and Grosskreutz were “attacking” Rittenhouse or trying to disarm him. .

I’m not aware that either Huber or Grosskreutz were involved in rioting or other destructive behavior. Maybe you are, I’m not. Grosskreutz was there as a medic, just like Rittenhouse claimed to be. Grosskreutz was carrying a gun in case he needed to defend himself, just like Rittenhouse.

Had Grosskreutz shot Rittenhouse, I wonder if he would have walked.

I’m not in favor of rioting and destruction of property. Folks that engage in that should expect to suffer legal consequences for doing so. That’s not what we’re talking about here.

I think he is a moron and should be held accountable

Yes, he is, and no, he won’t.

He’s a dumb kid with an active fantasy life about being a cop and shooting rioters. He responded to an irresponsible call on social media for area militia folks to show up, armed, to guard property. Not their property, somebody else’s property.

We’ve entered a context where it’s legitimate - including in the eyes of the criminal justice system, apparently - for individuals and groups to arm themselves, train in military tactics, carry weapons, invite themselves into fraught situations, decide who the good and bad guys are, and act as judge and jury regarding who does or does not need shooting.

It’s not good, and it’s going to get worse. Not exclusively because of this ruling, but the ruling will most definitely pour fuel on the fire. For both sides.

This is one fncked-up situation.

“ I’m not aware that either Huber or Grosskreutz were involved in rioting or other destructive behavior. Maybe you are, I’m not.”

Fair point. I tend to think everyone out on that night was being dumb but I could be wrong. I do think the people going after Rittenhouse were being vigilantes, as was Rittenhouse himself and they probably all thought they had good intentions. And one had a gun, like Rittenhouse, to protect himself and like Rittenhouse’s gun, that made the situation worse.

If you jump into a situation like that you don’t know for sure what is going on and you can very easily make the situation worse. Which is what happened. Both Rittenhouse and the people who went after him all thought they were being violent in a righteous cause. IMO they were all wrong.

At this point one would like to say “ let the police handle it as they are the professionals”, but of course the fact that the police too often act like vigilantes themselves is the root of the problem. But I don’t think citizen vigilantism makes it better. On either side.

The ironic thing is of course that Republicans claim to be the party of law and order, and they should be against street violence but it’s been a long time since anyone needed to believe what Republicans say about themselves.

Scattered thoughts about the situation: I've had to think a lot about how to deal with an active shooter (spending many hours on a university campus will do that). If you know that someone is there and is armed and is not a member of the police, and you know that person has shot and killed someone, a lot of people will try to stop that from happening again. The entire right wing fantasy of concealed carry is premised upon this very idea. But most people, including the police, will not have seen most of what precipitates a shooting. Chances are good that no one other than an armed person on a homicidal rampage will know the intentions of any give person in the situation carrying a weapon - not even the cops.

But, for the record, if I were in a crowd of people who had just been shot at by a civilian looking person with a firearm, I can see why one would decide to go after that person with whatever was at hand as well. That person is a threat to my life and the lives of many others with a high capacity firearm in hand.

And if I were a person who was there with a firearm that had been brought for protection (of myself and others) and saw someone not in a law enforcement uniform pointing that weapon at me, I'd probably think that person was a bad guy and have to make a decision about the use of force.

The number of unknowns and the potential for catastrophic mistakes and collateral damage make me think that the whole idea of firearm carry is foolish. No one has enough clarity in these situations to act on any impulse save fear and preemption.

Second thought - any law enforcement agency that welcomes people with firearms into the area on whatever side is not an agency that I trust. Any law enforcement agent that welcomes the idea of everyday carry for ordinary citizens is a dangerous person to put in a position of power and of life-or-death judgments.

“ Hard for me to say whether we should say Huber and Grosskreutz were “attacking” Rittenhouse or trying to disarm him. .”

Rosenbaum attacked Rittenhouse, if one goes by the Wikipedia piece. Rittenhouse was trying to get away from him. Part of the point here is that Huber and Grosskreutz trying to disarm him were essentially repeating the same mistake and as for pointing a gun at someone, even I know once you do that there is an extremely good chance someone is going to get shot. If Rittenhouse was wrong to bring a gun, and I think he was wildly irresponsible., I find it difficult to justify the other gun wielding hero bringing his own gun for protection. If you think you might need a gun then don’t go. Freaking Americans with their need for self protection. How about not going places where you think you might have to shoot someone?

And btw, the talk here of lefties shooting back— yeah, bullshit. You think you are going to do better than the police? You will kill the wrong person or shoot your own foot off..

If you actually see someone in front of you kill someone,then do the heroic thing if you think you have a chance. But if you didn’t see what happened, you are guessing and if you guess wrong, you might get someone hurt or killed and be put on trial yourself. And I was just stunned by the guy pulling a gun on Rittenhouse. Of course someone is going to get shot. Americans really do watch too many violent movies and TV shows. People usually hit who they want to hit in those shows.

And btw, the talk here of lefties shooting back— yeah, bullshit. You think you are going to do better than the police? You will kill the wrong person or shoot your own foot off..

I don't think anyone thinks that anyone will do better in this situation. I think it's the basic idea that if one side is showing up with guns and killing people, that the only response they will recognize and understand is if the people they hate reciprocate.

The dynamic here is not justice, it's blood feud *because* there is no justice, and all that is left is the insistence upon agency and extracting a cost.

Read Icelandic sagas. Read Irish cycles. You will see our moment reflected.

I have no illusions about where these decisions will take us, but neither do I think that the situation will be helped with a unilateral choice to avoid conflict when the other side is resolved to it and awaiting their baptism.

Rosenbaum chased Rittenhouse and tried to take his gun. Rittenhouse shot him. . Why do you chase someone with a gun if you aren’t a cop and are not armed? This seems to be a pattern. The other person he killed was trying to take his gun. Another hero pointed a gun at Rittenhouse and Rittenhouse shot him.

So, to put it in the terms of Rittenhouse's defense: Rosenbaum, Huber, and Grosskreutz saw a guy waving a gun and, based on his actions, feared for their lives. So they attempted to defend themselves.

Unsuccessfully, but that's the main difference. And it must be said that their reasons for being where they were were better than Rittenhouse's.

At this point one would like to say “let the police handle it as they are the professionals”, but of course the fact that the police too often act like vigilantes themselves is the root of the problem.

No, Donald, police misbehavior is a problem. But it is not the root of this problem. The root of this problem is people who have been propagandized to think they need to be a paramilitary force.

The root of this problem is people who have been propagandized to think they need to be a paramilitary force.

Along with with gun laws that enable vigilantism.

On the Rosenbaum thing.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/11/14/us/kyle-rittenhouse-trial-takeaways.html
… Jason Lackowski, a former Marine who was among the armed people who arrived in Kenosha after he saw reports of destruction during two nights of civil unrest, testified as a prosecution witness, appearing to undermine Mr. Rittenhouse’s assertion that Mr. Rosenbaum posed a lethal threat. Mr. Lackowski told the court that Mr. Rosenbaum had taunted him and a group of armed people like him who said they had decided to come to the area because they wanted to defend the local businesses.

“After he had done that a few times, I turned my back to him and ignored him,” said Mr. Lackowski, who dismissed Mr. Rosenbaum as “a babbling idiot.”…

If you think you might need a gun then don’t go,.

Good advice, that.

On the Rosenbaum thing.

Rosenbaum was mentally ill.

What this outcome has established is that it’s perfectly reasonable for people to arm themselves, invite themselves to chaotic and possibly violent situations, and act as if they were legitimate public safety responders. As long as they are there to defend property - anybody’s property, with or without the knowledge or consent of the owner - they have license to use force, up to and including killing people.

I totally get that Rittenhouse felt threatened. I’ve been in protest situations not nearly as chaotic as Kenosha and felt threatened. It’s unnerving. His response to feeling threatened - threatened because he willingly stepped into a chaotic and hostile environment - was to kill people.

He was in way, way over his head, he did not have the training or the skill set to manage the kind of conflict he was most certainly headed for, and two people were killed and one maimed.

He will not be held accountable for any of that. He wasn’t even found guilty of violating the curfew - the judge threw that out. At no point did the judge even call out his behavior that evening as anything questionable - not even the most anodyne “young man, think of what your actions led to”. On the contrary, the judge was blatantly deferential to Rittenhouse’ defense throughout the trial.

It has now been established that it’s perfectly legitimate in the eyes of the law for anyone - anyone at all - to arm themselves, invite themselves into chaotic and violent situations, situations that present great risk to public safety, and act as if they were cops or national guard or similar.

The acceptance of free-lance violence - unaccountable to any civil authority, just private individuals deciding whether and when and where to show up armed to the teeth and ready to kill - is not a good precedent. To say the least.

It’s a green light for vigilantism.

Don't have much to say about the verdict. Just a two personal notes.

I was born in Wisconsin (it's where my mom and dad met) and though was only there for 2 years as an infant, we had a few family trips back and I attended the SEAsian language institute for a summer in Madison. So I was steeped in the liberal/progressive history of the state (La Follette! The Wisconsin Idea! Student Activism at UW!) and even though this was dented, first by Tommy Thompson, and then shot thru by Scott Walker (who has a face that could epitomize the German word backpfeifengesicht), I still held out a faint hope that Wisconsin might be a little different. After all, Rittenhouse was from Illinois. But sadly, any nostalgic idea that Wisconsin was somehow a place for liberalism is truely sunk for me.

Also, I've mentioned that I do martial arts (aikido and iaido) and I like kung fu and wuxia flicks. But when I was in Korea, I did BJJ, which was ok, but didn't give me the charge that I used to get and with Corona, I've found myself disinterested with looking at vids and am on the verge of just dropping martial arts altogether.

Part of it was coming upon breakdowns of knife-fighting scenes where he points out why it is unrealistic. (or course, in martial arts, they say if someone pulls a knife, the first thing you should do is run) It wasn't the fact that a lot of knife fighting videos are intent on proving that you are an idiot for doing aikido (I can blow those off), it was more seeing how, if someone has a knife and it totally intent on doing you harm, probably the best you can do is to make sure they get hurt too. Not that I was doing aikido to defend myself, but setting up the scenarios in my mind has me feel pretty queasy.

The idea of self defense has gotten altogether too menacing to contemplate. This is largely a though experiment here in Japan (though there have been some notable violent acts recently) so I think that I would simply remove myself from the situation though it seems like taking away the ability to protest because of the presence of counter protesters is a pretty straightforward way of silencing, nous' 'unilateral avoidance of conflict'.

"It has now been established that it’s perfectly legitimate in the eyes of the law for anyone - anyone at all people who pass the 'paper bag test' - to arm themselves, invite themselves into chaotic and violent situations..."

no, Rittenhouse will not be held accountable. but, like all good right wing folk heroes, he has job offers from a host of Republican grifters, including the three fascist stooges: Gaetz, Cawthorn and Gosar.

GOP is a cult.

As a Real American™ of the right skin tone, demons are a threat to my eternal salvation. Demons are everywhere, probably, so I am in constant fear of that imminent threat. So I can neutralize that ever-present threat, anywhere, at any time, by any means necessary, just so long as I am "reasonably" in fear for my own eternal safety - and by "own" I also include any person or group that I have self-appointed to protect - regardless of the actual presence of any such threat. Legally.

Am I doing this right?

Jesus Fuck.

"The root of the problem is"....the absence of democracy in Wisconsin.

lest one thinks that I believe that Wisconsin was the one true place, this from Wikipedia

Wisconsin took part in several political extremes in the mid to late 20th century, ranging from the anti-communist crusades of Senator Joseph McCarthy in the 1950s to the radical antiwar protests at UW-Madison that culminated in the Sterling Hall bombing in August 1970.

As I get older, I find myself hoping to live more and more in a boring place with no swinging between extremes.

It has now been established that it’s perfectly legitimate in the eyes of the law for anyone - anyone at all - to arm themselves, invite themselves into chaotic and violent situations, situations that present great risk to public safety, and act as if they were cops or national guard or similar.

In Wisconsin, in one case, and jury decisions are not binding on future juries (although in future cases the DA might opt for second-degree charges rather than first).

Last year, in Colorado, a nutcase killed a police officer. A civilian with a gun ran towards the noise, then shot and killed the nutcase. A second officer, arriving on the scene, shot and killed that civilian because he was clearly armed at the scene of an active shooting. An independent court-appointed investigation into the incident recommended no actions be taken against the second officer and explicitly argued that civilians had no authority to get involved. The media that has made an enormous fuss about the Rittenhouse case for the reasons you state has been strangely silent about the Colorado one, which establishes exactly the opposite policy.

But that was a police officer on trial (figuratively, I presume), so the other set of rules applies (which again would not, if the one shot was a Bundy).
It may also matter, whether the event happens on live TV, a private camera, a police body cam or without video evidence.

More seriously, 'has now been established' mainly means 'in the public mind', i.e. people are going to act on that perception until another event reverses it (e.g. the next few Rittenhouses ending up with several magazines worth of police bullets in the back or the next 'run 'em over' neonazis literally torn to shreds or mollied in their cars* by the intended victims who then also get acquitted).

*or is it 'molotoved'? (not sure about the US slang on that)

More seriously, 'has now been established' mainly means 'in the public mind', i.e. people are going to act on that perception until another event reverses it...

Perhaps I have more faith, but I disagree. 'In the public mind' is doing a lot of heavy lifting there. Do you think a bunch of the other vigilantes that were out in Kenosha those nights -- apparently carefully staying out of the areas where there was actual violence -- are thinking, "Sure, a babyfaced 17-year-old who came within a trigger pull of dying got off. So will I."? Do you think the average suburbanite around Kenosha is now on the side of vigilantes advancing (and some of them dying) on looters and rioters? On a peaceful protest?

Lots of people said the Zimmerman verdict would cause many copycat killings. Didn't happen. The NC case that was referred to as Zimmerman 2.0? The killer is serving a life term. The driver who killed protesters with his car in Charlottesville? Serving a life term. The DOJ is slowly but steadily rolling up people from Jan. 6.

a nutcase killed a police officer. A civilian with a gun ran towards the noise, then shot and killed the nutcase. A second officer, arriving on the scene, shot and killed that civilian because he was clearly armed at the scene of an active shooting.

with all due respect to the guy that shot the nutcase, this is why it's not a good idea for civilians with guns to play cop.

I'm sure there are other examples of it all working out swimmingly. but it complicates the job of first responders to have to figure out who the "good guys" and "bad guys" are if they are called to the scene of a shooting.

Do you think a bunch of the other vigilantes that were out in Kenosha those nights -- apparently carefully staying out of the areas where there was actual violence -- are thinking, "Sure, a babyfaced 17-year-old who came within a trigger pull of dying got off. So will I."?

I think the fact that there were a bunch of other vigilantes out in Kenosha those nights argues for Hartmut's point.

Oh, the horror!
Ousted from power, Israel’s ultra-Orthodox lose the final word on what’s kosher

It looks like Puritanism is under threat beyond the US. I expect at least occasional laments from that part of our far right not (yet) consumed by anti-Semitism.

I think the fact that there were a bunch of other vigilantes out in Kenosha those nights argues for Hartmut's point.

So near as I can tell, none of those went anywhere near the places where there was actual looting or rioting going on.

I'm willing to bet a craft beer that between now and Thanksgiving 2022, in our country of 330M people, there won't be ten incidents that the media paints as "Rittenhouse inspired". People don't have to die to qualify, but there has to be guns fired with intent. I'll pop for a Zoom or whatever is the popular arrangement that Thursday, assuming the betting pool can agree on a time, so the losers can tip their glass(es).

I've always been anti-regulation when the orthodox faithful are the chosen regulators.

Regarding copycatting, and Michael Cain is an eminently reasonable guy, but I would make the case that Rittenhouse himself is a copycat killer, who internalized every Oath Keeper, NRA (good guys with guns kill bad guys with guns, and Trump waving his stubby loaded fuck-fingers around in public appearances) image and rhetoric and action and everyone in that area Kenosha who were carrying a weapon was copycatting someone too, maybe from a movie.

Same with the Colorado shooting lollapolooza. The original nutcase, (who was wearing a cape, for effs sakes, according to reports) sake was acting at least partly and insanely with copycat notions, the private citizen who shot him didn't think up carrying a deadly weapon and using it on a human threat all by his lonesome, and even the cop who shot the second shooter was copycatting to the letter, according to the authorities, police manual and procedure regarding when to use deadly force.

Now of course, the murderous all-American anti-American subhuman conservative movement has ratcheted up permit concealed carry to no permit, no gun safety education concealed carry and open carry.

https://www.cnn.com/2021/11/17/us/concealed-open-carry-guns-police/index.html

There are ratchets yet to ratchet in their fascist playbook. And they will be ratcheted.

One rachet now is that the 1/6 killers and insurrectionists are now held out "political prisoners" by those (we know who they are and they are legion evil) who are encouraging copycats.

Rittenhouse stepped quickly from political prisoner to fully justified martyr-hero with the verdict.

He'll have an agent of some kind soon, if not already, who will be grooming him to copycat some other figment of the conservative imagination, perhaps what they wish John Wilkes Booth had been permitted to become, a hero hired gun with a smart mouth and reality show.

"I could shoot a guy on 5th Avenue and I wouldn't lose voters!" stated the leader of a thin excuse of a country stuffed to the gills with aspirational killer-wanna-bes who all voted twice for the jagoff.

Were any of the school shooters over the past 20-some years copycatting the Columbine twosome? Right down the street from my house at the time.

Serial killers practically compete to see who can be more gruesome and perverted.

Indian-hunter Cavalry took scalps in the 19th century.

It was kind of a Me-Too Movement.

I'm willing to bet a craft beer that between now and Thanksgiving 2022, in our country of 330M people, there won't be ten incidents that the media paints as "Rittenhouse inspired".

Ethically & morally, I have no interest in that wager. Financially, I’ll triple down. Because media. But also, maybe otherwise. I hope I lose.

"The DOJ is slowly but steadily rolling up people from Jan. 6."

They are and good for them.

But in January of 2025, after the Republican steals the Presidential election, this DOJ will be rolled up and Rittenhouse and company will filling those posts up and down the hallways.

there won't be ten incidents that the media paints as "Rittenhouse inspired".

the thing is, Rittenhouse was himself inspired by the already existing practice of self-appointed militias showing up at protests etc., uninvited and armed.

the practice is already in place, it needs no goading from Rittenhouse.

people already show up with guns, and people already get shot and killed. people already drive their cars into protestors, and municipalities have already proposed and/or passed laws carving out immunity from civil liability if they do so.

my issue with the Rittenhouse verdict is that at no point in all of the handling of the case has anyone in the criminal justice system called for private militias to stand down and stay the hell away from public protests, violent or otherwise. or at least leave the guns at home if they want to show up.

when I say "it's now legitimate in the eyes of the criminal justice system", that's what I'm talking about.

if you're a protestor carrying a gun, you're some kind of street scum, and it's your own fault if you get shot.

if you're a self-appointed militia dude carrying a gun, you're all good.

IMO *nobody* should be bringing firearms to public protests, but the law allows it. so people get shot.

IMO the appropriate response from law enforcement and criminal justice should be don't show up with a firearm. that's difficult to enforce, because the law in many jurisdictions places no limit on who can carry what where. which is another problem.

Rittenhouse decided to show up and play self-appointed, armed first responder, and at no point has anyone speaking for law enforcement or the criminal justice system - let alone law makers - stepped in to say "don't do that".

not to my knowledge, anyway.

if you're a protestor carrying a gun, you're some kind of street scum, and it's your own fault if you get shot.

Well, unless you are a reactionary/militia type protestor. In which case, you are a "victim" -- a word that the judge will allow to be used for you. The question will be: are you a victim of Joe Biden, Barack Obama, or AOC?

“ in-groups whom the law protects but does not bind, alongside out-groups whom the law binds but does not protect.”

I’m finding it more & more difficult to not keep coming back to this.

The actual Rittenhouse will soon be dropped (I would actually be surprised, if Gaettz & his partners in slime made true their promise to hire him). Too much of a wussy-boy. The mythical Rittenhouse will remain for some time.
Remember: a major advantage of (actual) martyrs is that they are dead and can't object to their names being (ab)used for purposes they may have had no interest in. These are the days of the pseudo-martyrs that stay very much alive and milk their status to the last drop. But they have to be the types for that, and I have my doubts that Rittenhouse can compete with the professional grifters. And if he attaches himself to one of those, he'll soon* realize that he's just the lemon to be squeezed and then discarded.
But the 'case' we'll have to live with for some time.

*or not so soon, if he is as dumb as he gives the impression to be.

, if he is as dumb as he gives the impression to be.

He and his lawyers were smart/lucky enough not to plea bargain. Which is good. The narratives from all sides have to contend with a lot more facts than would otherwise have been available.

Charles’ narrative is that there were narratives.

Rittenhouse was just Babyface Zimmerman, who was just Charles Bronson repackaged for the current firearm-maximalist age.

The ex-friend who cut me off after Jan. 6 for "being mean to conservatives" has a son who fits the Rittenhouse mold (plays airsoft, does ridealongs, wants to get into the academy). Both father and son pass videos of black youth rioting in Milwaukee back and fort between them as justification for this sort of action.

Another schoolmate from HS in WI is a deputy, SWAT member, veteran, lifetime NRA member, and big David Clarke fan. This is all of a piece with his fascination with James Wickstrom and the posse comitatus community that Wickstrom tried to found in Tigerton Dells, WI back in the '80s:

https://www.splcenter.org/fighting-hate/extremist-files/individual/james-wickstrom

There's a long history in WI of this sort of mix of anti-government and racist elements and it spills over into regular communities in ways that mask the racialized animus. And it perpetuates itself through some of the most extreme segregation in the US - accomplished entirely through de-racialized means. Look at maps of Milwaukee and Racine, broken down by racial composition from census data. Only Detroit is more segregated.

https://digbysblog.net/2021/11/20/a-star-is-born/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charlottesville_car_attack

https://www.npr.org/2020/06/21/880963592/vehicle-attacks-rise-as-extremists-target-protesters

Whoops? Coincidence, like two brilliant scientists barking up the same tree for a unified theory of stupidity, or just dumbasses playing monkey see, monkey do.

Oh look, the big fascist genocidal gorillas in the conservative movement think its the best idea since their last genocidal notion:

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/21/us/politics/republican-anti-protest-laws.html

Seems the conservative libertarian movement and their kissing cousins, right wing Christians, are adding weapon after weapon to the arsenal which they will use to murder all of their enemies, and conservative law has put the seal of approval on all of it.

I remember when Charles' narratives included "an armed society is a polite society" and "whoopee, we can make firearms with at-home 3-D printers!"

Amy Coney Barrett and Kyle Rittenhouse sittin' in a tree.

Odd that weapon s and bullet manufacturers aren't reporting any supply chain cockups.

Kinda reveals the manufacturing policy of the stinking jagoff conservative movement for America.

Kinda reveals the manufacturing policy of the stinking jagoff conservative movement for America.

That or the paranoid hoarding of guns and ammo that renders shorter-term supply-chain disruptions irrelevant.

The rest of the industrialized world is far less gun-crazy, so the "supply chain" is entirely confined to the USA.

Odd that weapon s and bullet manufacturers aren't reporting any supply chain cockups.

Huh? There is a very severe ongoing ammo shortage, dating back to early 2020, for a variety of reasons. Supply chain issues are near the top of the list of causes.

The rest of the industrialized world is far less gun-crazy, so the "supply chain" is entirely confined to the USA.

Not entirely. Folks like the Russians** no doubt maintain a hefty export market. If only as part of their campaign to reduce American power and influence.

** The AK-47, favorite of nutcase militias everywhere, being originally a Russian weapon.

The rest of the industrialized world is far less gun-crazy, so the "supply chain" is entirely confined to the USA.

The US imports a surprising amount of its guns and ammunition -- more before Biden stopped a bunch of Chinese imports. Plus precursor chemicals and metals. The current serious ammo shortage is in part due to a global copper supply problem.

Folks in the illegal drug producing nations of the world have their own supply chain problems and complain of the flood of weapons pouring in from the US, China, Russia, Germany, Netherlands, and Switzerland (I believe those are the major small arms manufacturing nations.) Got a bit of a triangle trade thing going on here.

And our own nutcase militias have mostly moved away from AK style weapons towards AR weapons or others firing NATO rounds. That change happened in the 2000s after 9/11. Not much traffic in AK style weapons or ammo. The nuts have upscaled.

I was speaking with an in-law who is a long-time long-distance target shooter. His summary is that match-grade ammo is running $5/round. Bulk ammunition, eg cheap 9mm for a handgun at a range, is simply not available.

I stand corrected, well, I’m sitting corrected, but have the corresponding death, maiming, and suicide by gunshot rates declined in tandem?

I suspect stockpiling, bullets not being among the just-in-time procedure of Larry Kudlow.

Too bad the supply chain dilemma did not interdict Rittenhouse, but his Mom would probably have come up with a work-around.

Now that think about it, the Oath Keepers have secured an arsenal of bullets and Russell and I are just now thinking we need to seek safety training with 2nd Amendment solutions.

Maybe we should go for SUVs with reinforced bumpers instead.

Facts that are not lost on the 3%ers. Not a good time for the left to try to arm up. All the rounds are in the hands of the other guys.

Have to wait for the concertina wired homestead to go dark from COVID and salvage some rounds from the barrels buried out back.

In the mean time, play your zombie survival shooter games. They will show you the way.

Yes, it's all fantasy, but it's the fantasy that they live. Gun shows are their Comicon and they cosplay Red Dawn every day.

If the brat Rittenhouse (or his mommy) came into your restaurant, would you serve them?

If you did, would the Christianist/MAGAt chorus caterwaul about your unfairness?

If they did, and you told them to fuck off, would Libertarians(TM) support your right to run your business as you like?

Let's widen the initial question. If some progressive entrepreneur printed up millions of "UNWANTED" posters, featuring the mugs (in many cases mugshots) of various MAGAt celebrities, would you put them up in your shop? As a customer, would you feel less, or more, inclined to shop there?

Just wondering.
--TP

There are tactical repeating crossbows (one magazine á 7 shots emptied in less than 10 seconds). Reloading by stripper clip possible. Effective lethal range 50+ m.
Very popular on both sides of the Atlantic at the moment, so supply could be short (not for the bolts or arrows, the devices themselves).

So, no need to let short supply of firearms be an obstacle to your urge to slaughter both long and common pigs.

[Not intended to promote violence against persons]

I guess the copycats need to pause and celebrate before climbing directly into the litter box:

https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2021/11/20/2065434/-Rittenhouse-verdict-celebrated-on-right-wing-social-media-as-green-light-for-killing-protesters

Michael Cain said:

there won't be ten incidents that the media paints as "Rittenhouse inspired".

Most of the folks quoted in noone’s Kos cite are full of hot air. Thankfully. So maybe Michael Cain is right.

I wouldn’t think of making a prediction. I have no idea. Nothing would surprise me at this point.

Best of luck, everyone.

there won't be ten incidents that the media paints as "Rittenhouse inspired".

The media may not paint them that way. But you can bet that their defense attorneys will cite the case as a precedent for getting their clients off.

"hot air"

Well, if they aren't yet shooting people, they are contributing more than their fair share to global climate change.

Michael Cain being right keeps the world in a barely net plus balance.

Besides, I won't have to drive too far to buy the owed round of craft beers.

I was just walking around Olde Town Arvada two weeks ago visiting a pretty nice acoustic guitar store nestled in there.

There was no gunfire, and my meager talents dissuaded me from purchasing the $5000 used Martin acoustic I craved after playing it (it played me).

Much evil remains aspirational until it's not:

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/oregon-tax-cheat-owned-millions-in-real-estate-and-businesses-but-made-himself-look-like-a-pauper-to-collect-food-stamps-prosecutors-say-11637163128?siteid=bigcharts&dist=bigcharts

I'll keep the obligatory Anatole France quote in my pocket.

Well, yet another welcome pretense to abolish food stamps completely. If rich (=good, moral) people cheat on them, what can one expect from the poor (=bad, immoral)in the first place?

yet another welcome pretense to abolish food stamps completely

For an alternative argument on the topic, see the new post on UBI

Looks not to be a copycat, but a facsimile thereof:

https://www.thedailybeast.com/waukesha-wisconsin-holiday-parade-mass-casualty-incident-after-suv-drives-into-participants?via=newsletter&source=DDMorning

Makes me want to give up beer altogether.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Blog powered by Typepad