SpaceX Finishes Assembling New Starship Prototype

SpaceX Finishes Assembling New Starship Prototype, by Mike Wall.

Newly assembled Starship Mk1 prototype

The company has mated the top and bottom halves of the Starship Mk1 vehicle at its South Texas facilities, SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk said today (Sept. 27). …

Both Starship and Super Heavy will be fully and rapidly reusable, and the duo could begin flying commercial missions as soon as 2021, SpaceX representatives have said. The first operational flights will likely launch communications satellites, but there is a crewed Starship mission on the docket for 2023 — a round-the-moon flight booked by Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa.

Looks like a rocket ought!

New York City bans the phrase “illegal alien”: $250,000 fine

New York City bans the phrase “illegal alien”: $250,000 fine. By John Hinderaker.

New York City is trying to ban the phrase “illegal alien” in various contexts, including employment and housing. It has issued a guidance to that effect under the New York City Human Rights Law. Under the City’s interpretation, calling an illegal alien an “illegal alien” could cost you $250,000.

It’s obviously unconstitutional. But with the right judges, who knows?

The City of New York wants to frustrate the enforcement of immigration laws …

New York wants to ban the phrase “illegal alien,” but that is how illegal aliens are described throughout Title 8 of the U.S. Code. …

For some time now, the left has been trying to normalize extremism. But this New York City rule exemplifies the left’s current effort to go further by actually requiring extremism, or at least obeisance to extremism. You must agree with the left that the phrase “illegal alien” is verboten, a view that only a small minority holds and is legally untenable, or risk a $250,000 fine. This is the brave new world in which those who live in urban areas controlled by liberals are forced to live.

Donald Trump now has to battle CIA spies in Dems’ war against him

Donald Trump now has to battle CIA spies in Dems’ war against him, by Michael Goodwin.

Beset by a hostile media and a ruthless opposition party, Trump now must be careful about every word he says, privately and publicly.

The walls, including in the White House, have ears.

That was demonstrated in spades last week, most dramatically by the allegations from a CIA officer that Trump used a phone call with the president of Ukraine to solicit foreign help in the 2020 campaign. That allegation and others led to a fiery congressional hearing and spurred Democrats to quicken their pace toward impeachment. …

The trained CIA officer used his trusted position in the White House to gather secret information from what he claims were “multiple US government officials.”

He retained Democratically connected lawyers and injected his allegations into the political bloodstream with one intent: to get Trump ­removed from office. …

A second instance of snooping made the “loose lips” point less sensationally but was still disturbing. Before he left the United Nations Thursday, Trump attended a private event to thank the new American ambassador, Kelly Craft, and her staff for their work during the General ­Assembly session.

Some privacy. The president said, “I want to know who’s the person, who’s the person who gave the whistleblower the information? Because that’s close to a spy.”

We know he said that and more ­because someone at the event, maybe more than one person, secretly ­recorded his remarks, both audio and video, and promptly leaked them to the media.

When it comes to brickbats, Trump is perhaps the most battle-tested occupant the Oval Office has ever known, yet the two incidents demonstrate that the war against him has entered a vicious new phase. Efforts to end his presidency, one way or another, have reached a fever pitch, and Trump would be foolish to assume they will fail. His margin for error is approximately zero.


Leninthink, by Gary Saul Morson. This sounds a bit obscure and historical, until you realize that it is increasingly being applied to us, now, by the new left in the West. Let’s start with the violent endgame, but then move on to the tactics on display today.

Lenin did more than anyone else to shape the last hundred years. He invented a form of government we have come to call totalitarian, which rejected in principle the idea of any private sphere outside of state control. To establish this power, he invented the one-party state, a term that would previously have seemed self-contradictory since a party was, by definition, a part. An admirer of the French Jacobins, Lenin believed that state power had to be based on sheer terror, and so he also created the terrorist state. …

Under the Third Reich, an ethnic German loyal to the regime did not have to fear arrest, but Lenin pioneered and Stalin greatly expanded a policy in which arrests were entirely arbitrary: that is true terror. By the time of the Great Terror of 1936–38, millions of entirely innocent people were arrested, often by quota. Literally no one was safe. The Party itself was an especially dangerous place to be, and the NKVD [the forerunner of the KGB] was constantly arresting its own members — a practice that was also true of its predecessor, the Cheka, which Lenin founded almost immediately after the Bolshevik coup.

NKVD interrogators who suspected they were to be arrested often committed suicide since they had no illusions about what arrest entailed. They had practiced exquisite forms of torture and humiliation on prisoners—and on prisoners’ colleagues, friends, and families. “Member of a family of a traitor to the fatherland” was itself a criminal category, and whole camps were set up for wives of “enemies of the people.” Never before had such practices defined a state. …

Lenin always insisted on the most violent solutions. … For Lenin maximal violence was the default position. He was constantly rebuking subordinates for not using enough force, for restraining mobs from lynchings, and for hesitating to shoot randomly chosen hostages. …

Naturally, peasants — Lenin called recalcitrant peasants “kulaks” — rebelled all over Russia. In response to one such “kulak” uprising Lenin issued the following order:

The kulak uprising in [your] 5 districts must be crushed without pity. . . . 1) Hang (and I mean hang so that the people can see) not less than 100 known kulaks, rich men, bloodsuckers. 2) Publish their names. 3) Take all their grain away from them. 4) Identify hostages . . . . Do this so that for hundreds of miles around the people can see, tremble, know and cry . . . . Yours, Lenin. P. S. Find tougher people. …

Lenin worked by a principle of anti-empathy, and this approach was to define Soviet ethics. I know of no other society, except those modeled on the one Lenin created, where schoolchildren were taught that mercy, kindness, and pity are vices. After all, these feelings might lead one to hesitate shooting a class enemy or denouncing one’s parents …

Today’s left are increasingly Leninist. Recognize any of this?

Bolshevik morality holds that whatever contributes to Bolshevik success is moral, whatever hinders it is immoral. …

I recall a Soviet citizen telling me that people in the USSR had absolute freedom of speech — so long as they did not lie. I recalled this curious concept of freedom when a student defended complete freedom of speech except for hate speech — and hate speech included anything he disagreed with. Whatever did not seem hateful was actually a “dog-whistle.” ….

In Lenin’s view, a true revolutionary did not establish the correctness of his beliefs by appealing to evidence or logic, as if there were some standards of truthfulness above social classes. Rather, one engaged in “blackening an opponent’s mug so well it takes him ages to get it clean again.” Nikolay Valentinov, a Bolshevik who knew Lenin well before becoming disillusioned, reports him saying: “There is only one answer to revisionism: smash its face in!”

Saul Alinsky

When Mensheviks objected to Lenin’s personal attacks, he replied frankly that his purpose was not to convince but to destroy his opponent. … You can see traces of this approach in the advice of Saul Alinsky — who cites Lenin — to “pick the target, freeze it, personalize it.” …

Critics objected that Lenin argued by mere assertion. He disproved a position simply by showing it contradicted what he believed. …

[If Lenin disagreed with them then] it was easy enough to attribute to them views they did not hold, associate them with disreputable people they had never heard of, or ascribe political purposes they had never imagined. These were Lenin’s usual techniques, and he made no bones about it. …

Opponents objected that Lenin lied without compunction, and it is easy to find quotations in which he says — as he did to the Bolshevik leader Karl Radek — “Who told you a historian has to establish the truth?” Yes, we are contradicting what we said before, he told Radek, and when it is useful to reverse positions again, we will. …

A true Leninist does not decide whether to lie. He automatically says what is most useful, with no reflection necessary. That is why he can show no visible signs of mendacity, perhaps even pass a lie detector test.

Western scholars who missed this aspect of Leninism made significant errors. For example, they estimated the size of the Soviet economy by assuming that official figures were distorted and made appropriate adjustments. But as Robert Conquest pointed out, “they were not distorted, they were invented.” The Soviets did not find out the truth and then exaggerate; they often did not know the truth themselves. …

When a criticism of the true ideology is advanced, or when embarrassing facts come out, everyone learns a particular answer. One neither believes nor disbelieves the answer; one demonstrates one’s loyalty by saying it. …

When I detect Leninist ways of thinking today, people respond: surely you don’t think all those social justice warriors are Leninists! Of course not. The whole point of Leninism is that only a few people must understand what is going on. That was the key insight of his tract What Is to Be Done? When Leninism is significant, there will always be a spectrum going from those who really understand, to those who just practice the appropriate responses, to those who are entirely innocent. The real questions are: Is there such a spectrum now, and how do we locate people on it? And if there is such a spectrum, what do we do about it?

Increasingly, this is what we in the non-left are up against.

The Ethnic Predicaments of the Shrinking White Majority

The Ethnic Predicaments of the Shrinking White Majority, by Frank Salter.

Whiteshift aims to explain the white populism that produced Brexit, the presidency of Donald Trump and the rise of nationalist parties across Europe.

Kaufmann dismisses economics as the main cause. “Immigration is central. Ethnic change—the size and nature of the immigrant inflow and its capacity to challenge ethnic boundaries—is the story.” Kaufmann argues that the ethnic diversity caused by immigration is roiling Western societies. This already sets him apart because, though well known to many researchers, the social costs of diversity are steadfastly denied or ignored in mainstream social science. …

Kaufmann then strides further into taboo territory by describing how some whites — many whites — suffer from mass non-white immigration. Worse still, he does not resort to the usual progressive explanation that whites are incorrigibly racist or lack legitimate ethnic identity. Instead he treats them like all other ethnic groups, subject to the same motivations found around the world. He thinks it is normal for a people of any descent to feel pride in their identity and aspire to remain their country’s majority population. He rejects the “myth” that people of European heritage do not have ethnic interests

Kaufmann’s book breaks taboos that have for decades constrained discussion of immigration and race. Kaufmann commits a sin just by explicitly and non-judgmentally discussing white identity. The rules governing contemporary public discourse are harsh enough concerning implicit mention of the subject. But instead of whistling the dog Kaufmann thinks everyone should call it by name.

The taboo against caring about white numbers greatly constrains rationality and fairness. The multicultural view is that whites should make way for ever greater diversity while celebrating their submersion. In reality, Whiteshift argues, falling white numbers explains the rise of white identitarian politics in Europe and around the Anglosphere.

Kaufmann states that it is reasonable and predictable for people to be concerned about their ethnic decline. It is normal for ethnic groups to feel alarm when they see their share of the population plummeting. These sentiments are not manifestations of late-stage capitalism or some uniquely perverse aspect of whiteness, as is often taught in universities. They are part of humanity’s evolutionary inheritance. …

Regarding white populist terrorism Kaufmann reports that, according to Europol, in 2016 the Far Right accounted for “virtually none” of the mass murders committed in Europe. Islamic extremists committed 72 per cent, separatists such as the IRA committed 10 per cent, and leftists and anarchists committed 3 per cent. …

Aggressive political correctness is now being enforced wholesale across the Anglosphere by elements of the mainstream media, education system and corporations, especially the large social media companies. In Britain it has become commonplace for police to visit conservatives in their homes and caution them about violations of the progressive speech code. Kaufmann sees political intolerance from Left elites to be motivated by the “progressive” morality tale, in which whites disappear. He characterises this ethnic suppression as being, in reality, “anti-white” attacks by the “cultural left”. …

The United States is projected to become minority white in a generation….

In 2010 David Coleman, professor of demographics at Oxford University, reported Office for National Statistics projections indicating that white British people will be less than half the population by about 2060, though a further 10 per cent will be “other whites”. By 2100 white British will be about 35 per cent of the population. …

However, demographic projections are strongly influenced by immigration, which is a matter of government policy.

US Left Floating Idea of Enforcing Blank Slate Ideology

US Left Floating Idea of Enforcing Blank Slate Ideology. By Ibram Kendi, a professor of history, director of the Antiracist Research & Policy Center at American University, and author of How to Be an Antiracist.

To fix the original sin of racism, Americans should pass an anti-racist amendment to the U.S. Constitution that enshrines two guiding anti-racist principals: Racial inequity is evidence of racist policy and the different racial groups are equals.

The amendment would make unconstitutional racial inequity over a certain threshold, as well as racist ideas by public officials (with “racist ideas” and “public official” clearly defined)….

Or else:

The DOA would be empowered with disciplinary tools to wield over and against policymakers and public officials who do not voluntarily change their racist policy and ideas.

Evolution and natural selection don’t apply to humans? All races therefore must have the same statistical properties? Except presumably for skin color and other superficial and therefore undeniable features, of course. The left apparently thinks it can override Nature, if it says so. Would this ruling be applied to say the races in the lucrative top league US football and basketball — or is it just more anti-white racism?

Bigger forces at play reshaping world’s wealth

Bigger forces at play reshaping world’s wealth, by Graham Lloyd.

The UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is a radical plan for a global “Green New Deal” to redistribute trillions of dollars by capping wealth and introducing a global minimum rate of tax.

Having built a stage for Thunberg, the political class is going to have to deal with the consequences.

French President Emmanuel Macron was shocked that after crying for the cameras in New York, one of Thunberg’s first actions was to sue France — home of the Paris Agreement.

Thunberg and 15 other young people claim in the lawsuit that five countries — France, Germany, Turkey, Brazil and Argentina — are violating the Convention on the Rights of the Child for not taking adequate action to cut greenhouse gas levels.

Macron has described Thunberg’s actions as “radical” and says she should focus her efforts on others, not France, which he thinks is “not blocking the way”. But Macron misunderstands Thunberg’s motivations and those who are behind her.

Thunberg exaggerates the science to call for drastic measures. She accuses most climate scientists and green politicians of “flying around the world” and “eating meat and dairy”. She calls on rich countries to eliminate all emissions within about six years

Under the existing Paris Agreement, China is allowed to keep increasing its greenhouse gas emissions until 2030.

A sign of the tensions within the broader talks is China’s insistence it be classified as a developing country and eligible to receive some of the $US100bn a year in finance that developed nations are expected to pay from next year. …

After years of stalling, Russia finally agreed to sign the Paris Agreement but gave no indication of what actions it would take. The main players, the US, China, India and EU were not prepared to act.

The slings and arrows of outraged elites

The slings and arrows of outraged elites, by Greg Sheridan.

This is the week the empire, the establishment, struck back against its two most dangerous insurrectionists, Donald Trump and Boris Johnson.

In both the US and Britain, their establishment opponents made huge efforts to bring both men down and destroy their populist agendas. It is key to understand that these efforts were not focused on elections and democratic politics and the ballot box. …

Here’s the common thread. What the political class can’t get through the ballot box, it is determined to get through the courts or any other institution it controls.

Trump and Johnson, the Manhattan property mogul and the Eton toff, are the two most unlikely leaders of the peasants’ revolt you could possibly imagine. …

Trump derangement syndrome is now matched by Johnson derangement syndrome in Britain. …

Nothing that Trump has done has been more offensive to the liberal establishment than his attempt to keep his election promises … Johnson’s greatest sin is to try to honour the 2016 referendum …

In both countries the liberal elite has decided the people who vote for such things — Trump and Brexit — are horrible people or horribly deluded. …

Anti-white racism coming to the fore:

Now, every emanation of support for Trump is judged “white racist” even if its progenitors are black, Asian or Hispanic.

In Britain, a Liberal Democrat MP from the west of the country was asked why her constituency voted overwhelming to leave the EU. She explained that the electorate was mainly composed of white people and the voters didn’t see many foreigners so they tended to be afraid of outsiders. Imagine if she was talking about people whose vote she wasn’t courting! …

It’s no longer deniable. Yes Greg, come right out and say the obvious:

It is not necessary to sign up to an anti-globalist conspiracy theory view of the world, much less a sinister deep state conspiracy view, to recognise what is plain and undeniable.

There is a very big left liberal establishment in the civil service, media, academe, much of the judiciary and transnational bureaucracy across the Western nations. Though naturally varied, its general ideological view is that the West is guilty of unique sins in history and ought therefore be forever apologetic, the nation-state is an obsolete roadblock to progress, humanity is best liberated from religion, progressive politics and increasingly identity politics represent the good, the West’s military power is best not emphasised or invested in, old traditions are bad while new traditions are sacred, and the only true morality and enlightened policies emanate exclusively from the left liberal establishment itself.

This establishment receives its scriptural interpretations and general campaign direction in the pages of The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, Le Monde and on CNN and in large parts of the BBC. This is one reason centre-right populists routinely campaign against much of the mainstream media, which they rightly see as committed politically against them.

To Hell with the Elites

To Hell with the Elites. It’s time for the president to build a big, beautiful door in the wall of propaganda that papers over the actions of America’s ruling class. And make the Democrats pay for it. By Matthew Peterson.

Asking for the assistance of our global friends and allies to help reveal the wrongdoing of the American ruling class is now an impeachable offense. Investigating their wrongdoing is wrongdoing. Exposing their corruption is corruption. In the Clown World we currently inhabit, the president of the United States must be removed from office for daring to ask they be investigated abroad.

The Ukraine fiasco reveals the real underlying cause of the Left’s outrageously hypocritical march towards impeachment. The ruling class is now effectively saying to President Trump: “We know that domestically we have nothing to fear from the media and the law—so how dare you ask other countries about us! You must be impeached for this crime and this crime alone—asking other countries about our wrongdoing!” …

Oh the hypocrisy:

Note that while asking other nations about the wrongdoing of Democrats is an impeachable offense, asking other nations about the alleged wrongdoing of Republicans is considered our noble, patriotic duty — our higher loyalty.

Hillary Clinton’s campaign had no problem with investigating Trump in other nations and paying foreign operatives for dirt about Trump. After all, that’s what ex-British spy Christopher Steele was hired to do. And the media had no problem with spreading it.

The Obama Administration had no problem asking Ukraine about Paul Manafort and his financial transactions with government officials, which were soon mysteriously released. Nor did the Obama Administration have a problem surveilling the Trump campaign using foreigners and investigating Trump and his team internationally.

And many Democrats had no problem with impeaching the president based on what those foreigners said. When that turned out to be uncorroborated nonsense, they said he must be impeached because he tried to fight off the investigation based on such nonsense. Now they seek to impeach him for asking for an investigation into one of their own.

Drain the swamp, Donald:

But fair is fair. President Trump should publicly announce to the denizens of the entire fetid swamp in Washington, D.C. that, yes, he will potentially initiate investigations with any nation willing to cooperate to expose the wrongdoing of the American political class. In fact, as president, it is his sworn duty to do so — to fulfill his oath to execute the laws and defend the U.S. Constitution. …

It’s time for President Trump to build a big, beautiful door in the wall of propaganda that papers over the actions of American elites. And make the Democrats pay for it.