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By now, everyone has heard of Christine Blasey (pron. Blah-zee) Ford, who recently attempted to smear Justice Brett Kavanaugh in the US Senate chamber.

However, Palo Alto University, where she teaches psychology, appears to be resetting the clock and putting women back into the 1890s as trauma victims who need shelter and security.

Professor Janice Fiamengo of the University of Ottawa (YouTube Studio Brule) tells us more about Palo Alto University in this absorbing 11-minute video:

Four out of five students are women. The vast majority of lecturers and professors are female. There are special programmes and help groups for the students, especially for those suffering trauma.

There is no denying that some women have suffered trauma in their lives, especially from an indecent assault, however, to transform a notional university culture into one where that is the predominant focus does no one any favours — especially women.

These leftist pro-women programmes are, in reality, putting women back into the 19th century. Let’s not be surprised if, 20 years from now, the average male thinks that women are, by definition, hysterical beings who should not be in control of anything, including a car.

Leftists are not helping women. They are doing them a profound disservice.

Ladies — or women, for those who prefer — wake up and smell the coffee!

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How many people know about the Battle of Lepanto?

In the 1970s, when Western education was still decent, I took a year of World History in high school. If we covered it, it must have been a footnote.

I read about it in depth only six years ago, when someone from the West Indies had a WordPress blog, since deleted. The writer was Catholic and explained the religious, historical and cultural significance of October 7, 1571, the date of the victory over the Ottoman Empire.

The victory was important to Mediterranean Europe. Inland, the Battle of Vienna took place just over a century later, on September 12, 1683, led by the indomitable King Jan (John) III Sobieski of Poland. Lepanto was to the Mediterranean what Vienna was to the rest of Europe.

On to the Battle of Lepanto and October 7, which Catholics venerate as the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary. In 2017, Polish Catholics assembled nationwide to pray the Rosary on that day. The Daily Mail has more (emphases mine):

Hundreds of thousands of Polish Catholics are expected to descend Saturday on the country’s borders to recite the rosary “to save Poland and the world” from the dangers facing them, organisers say, but others claim the event is aimed at protecting Europe from what they term a Muslim onslaught.

The episcopate insists that the “Rosary to the Borders” is a purely religious initiative, but some Catholics view it as a weapon against “Islamisation.”

The date was not chosen at random. October 7 is when Catholics celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, marking the 1571 victory of Christianity over the Ottoman Turks at the Battle of Lepanto.

A victory attributed to the recital of the rosary “that saved Europe from Islamisation”, the Solo Dios Basta foundation said on the website of the event it is organising.

Many Poles see Islam as a threat. The conservative government, which enjoys the backing of a sizeable portion of the population, refuses to welcome migrants to Poland, which has very few Muslims of its own.

Twenty-two border dioceses will take part in the event, whose faithful will congregate in some 200 churches for a lecture and mass before travelling to the border to say the rosary.

The goal is to have as many prayer points as possible along the 3,511 kilometres (about 2,200 miles) that make up Poland’s borders with Belarus, the Czech Republic, Germany, Lithuania, Russia, Slovakia, Ukraine and the Baltic Sea.

Fishing boats will join in at sea, while kayaks and sailboats will form a chain along rivers and lakes. Prayers will also be said at the chapels of a few international airports …

The goal is to pray for world peace, according to Father Pawel Rytel-Andrianik, spokesman for the Polish Bishops’ Conference.

“The initiative obviously received the approval of Poland’s bishops,” he told AFP, emphasising that it would be wrong to view the event as a prayer against the arrival of Muslim refugees.

“It is not a matter of closing ourselves off to others. On the contrary, the point of bringing the rosary to the borders is to break down walls and open ourselves up to Russians, Belarussians, Slovaks, Ukrainians and Germans,” he said

In 2018, on October 7, Italy’s interior minister, Matteo Salvini, appeared on a talk show saying that the influx of immigrants arriving by boat are not true refugees. He estimates that only 10 per cent are. He recommends taking in only women and young children. He objects to turning Italy’s public housing over to immigrants arriving by boat and says that local and regional governments should continue to reserve these flats and houses for Italians. Currently, Angela Merkel is trying to transfer immigrants who had arrived in Germany via Italy back to Italy:

RMC (French talk radio) had a lengthy segment on immigration from Africa on the morning of Monday, October 8. Opinion was strongly divided as to whether and how many more immigrants France — especially Paris — should accommodate. It was a lively discussion with no conclusion. One point that did stand out was that French people were being pushed down the queue for social housing for recently-arrived immigrants. So, the French housing situation is like Italy’s, which is like Germany’s and Sweden’s.

Besides the religious and 21st century significance of the Battle of Lepanto, there is a historic one. It took place at a time when the invasion of hordes of groups of people — not just those from the Ottoman Empire — were invading not only Europe but also Asia.

I had always wondered how these groups had been stopped. A considered essay, ‘The Significance of Lepanto’, explains what happened from that point through to the 18th century.

First, we need to consider the main group of players in Europe’s Holy League. These nation-states also controlled various parts of the Mediterranean, including islands such as Corsica, Cyprus and Crete. Trade and strategic ports were important to the Spanish, the Venetians and to the Vatican, which also controlled territory in this part of the world:

The Battle of Lepanto has a major place in the symbolism of the Western-Islamic relationship, and Niccolò Capponi’s recently published Victory of the West: The Story of the Battle of Lepanto treats the battle as a major encounter between the Islamic Ottoman empire and the forces of Western Christendom.

Lepanto was the last great battle that could be described as a simple clash between Christendom and Islam. Fought on October 7, 1571, it saw the fleet of the Ottoman empire pitted against an alliance of Spain, Venice and various other minor players to form a Holy League under the leadership of Don Juan of Austria, the illegitimate half-brother of Philip II of Spain.

The battle was the response of the Christian powers to the invasion of the Venetian possession of Cyprus. At stake was control of the Mediterranean. If the Ottomans had won then there was a real possibility that an invasion of Italy could have followed so that the Ottoman sultan, already claiming to be emperor of the Romans, would have been in possession of both New and Old Rome. The Pope could have become as much a tool of the Ottoman sultan as his Orthodox counterpart the Patriarch of Constantinople already was.

Yet, as Capponi points out, the Holy League was hardly a model of Christian solidarity. The Spanish and the Venetians had different strategic objectives—the Spanish were concerned primarily with Italy, North Africa and the Western Mediterranean, while Venice was anxious to recover Cyprus and protect its interests in the eastern Mediterranean. The Spanish were not keen for a battle that might lose them precious resources, particularly as Philip II, with interests as well in northern Europe, was usually on the verge of bankruptcy. The Spanish were also concerned that the Venetians were in the process of cutting a deal with the Ottomans. Just a few days before the battle there was a conflict between the Spanish and Venetians that almost tore the fleet apart. Nevertheless the alliance held and the League fleet scored a stunning success.

Lepanto reshaped the religious bent of the Mediterranean:

The cultural shape of the lands around the Mediterranean was confirmed with a largely Islamic East and South staring across the waters at a Christian North and West.

The Ottoman Empire gradually lost territory and influence from that point until it collapsed with the Great War (1914-1918). That said, we are still dealing with the aftermath a century later:

The Ottoman empire, like the ancient Roman empire and the Byzantine empire before it, was left with the task of defending its ever diminishing borders over the next three centuries. When it did finally “fall” after the First World War the ramifications were enormous, and we are still attempting to cope with them from Bosnia to Iraq.

The Europeans defeated the Ottomans because of advanced naval battle tactics and weaponry. They also had more advanced trade and inventions, such as the printing press, which the Ottomans were slow to adopt:

The League won because it used innovative tactics. The usual form that galley warfare took was to ram the enemy ships and then take them by storm. The Venetian ships attempted a new and different tactic. Using a larger and modified form of galley known as galleasses, they filled these ships with cannons and attempted to blow as many of the Ottoman galleys as possible out of the water. League ships carried many more cannon and its troops made much greater use of firearms. Many of the Ottoman troops preferred to use bows, although these were not necessarily inferior to the clumsy arquebus of that time …

In the longer term, however, the future belonged to the new commercial instruments of the West rather than to the bureaucratic machinery of the Ottomans. In her study of seventeenth-century Crete, A Shared World, Molly Green demonstrates that the commercial techniques and practices used by the Venetians were much more sophisticated and developed than those of the Ottoman regime that replaced them in mid-century. It was also the case that the Ottomans were slow to take to make use of printing, with the “printing revolution” that swept the West in the sixteenth century not really taking off in the Islamic world until the nineteenth century.

Europe and Asia had been beset by invaders for centuries, especially during the perilous Dark Ages.

In Europe, during the latter days of the Roman Empire:

Rome, and the Roman empire, had to face an almost continuous set of threats, beginning with the Celts, then moving through to the Germans, Huns, Avars, Arabs and Turks. The Ottoman Turks simply delivered the coup de grâce to what had become little more than a living corpse.

In Asia:

China built its “great wall” to protect itself from nomadic predators, while the damage inflicted by the Mongols on the settled Islamic world, including the sack of Baghdad, was staggering.

These invasions happened because invading tribes of people envied the civilisation of settled societies:

A settled civilisation, by creating a measure of comfort and a settled way of life, makes itself a target for those living outside their boundaries who are drawn by what it has to offer.

Large-scale invasions ended in the 18th century, probably thanks to the Chinese:

the Qing Chinese empire in the eighteenth century successfully conquered and subdued the last of the great nomadic empires of Eurasia. For the first time in millennia no barbarian horsemen, no Huns, no Avars, no Mongols, surged across the great plains of Eurasia to sack and pillage Europe, China and the great civilisations of the Islamic world and India.

When a new barbarian empire emerged powerful enough to threaten the Ottomans, and by this I mean the Russian empire, it was successfully checked by the jealousy of the other European powers. It was also into this world … of empires that were not revitalised by new sets of barbarians, in the Middle East, in India and in China, that the European empires were able to make such inroads from the eighteenth century onwards.

Lepanto, as with so many other advances of that era, helped to usher in modernity to Europe with an emphasis on trade rather than war:

Lepanto can be seen as symbolic of that transition, described by the nineteenth-century French liberal philosopher Benjamin Constant, from the age of war to the age of commerce. Or as others might say, it can be considered as the birth of modernity. Even the overwhelming use of firepower can be found in the pages of Constant as a feature of the utilitarian approach to warfare favoured by commercial nations. The irony was that the somewhat ramshackle empires of sixteenth-century Europe, with their disorganised finances and administrative apparatuses much inferior to those of the Ottomans, would within 300 years come to dominate the world not because of their superior asabiya or virtue but because of their capacity to create modern efficient institutions far superior to the slave bureaucracy of the Ottomans, and because of their ability to deliver superior firepower.

This new European and commercial form of empire supplanted an older, more traditional imperial form. What this meant was that the old rules of empire, of an imperial expansion dictated by the need to conquer to attain booty and slaves and a decline governed by the need to protect its settled possessions from new predators, would give way to a new set of rules. These are the rules of the export and import of capital, as described by Niall Ferguson in his recent studies of the English and American empires.

Looking at present day developments in Europe, there does seem to be an envy of others to have what we Europeans have without contributing to our respective nations. When well-intended private and state generosity is met with Marxist-driven violence and disregard for the host citizenry, it is no wonder that many think of Lepanto.

Brett Kavanaugh is the 102th — or 114th — US Supreme Court Justice.

The US Senate voted 50-48 to appoint him to the Supreme Court.

Congratulations, Justice Kavanaugh!

President Trump, on his way to a rally on Saturday, October 6, signed the requisite commission on board Air Force One:

This was the scene later that day:

Here he is at the Supreme Court ready to be sworn in:

Kavanaugh takes the oath in his wife and daughters’ presence. Ashley Kavanaugh holds the Bible:

I could not agree more with Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah):

Other Supreme Court justices were also in attendance:

A formal public swearing-in ceremony took place on Monday, October 8:

Monday’s ceremony took place at the White House. President Trump made introductory remarks:

This is interesting:

You can see the full ceremony below:

After the public swearing-in …

… Justice Kavanaugh spoke:

You can see the full speech here:

Earlier that day, Kavanaugh championed women, more so than left-wing Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who is still on the bench:

The Daily Caller reported (emphases mine):

Justice Brett Kavanaugh has hired a black law clerk for his new chambers at the U.S. Supreme Court, matching Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s record of African-American clerkship hiring during her tenure on the nation’s highest judicial tribunal.

With his first clerkship hires, Kavanaugh also set a gender composition record, an apparent attempt to buck the high court’s hiring patterns, which tend to favor white, male graduates of elite law schools.

Since joining the high court in 1993, Ginsburg has hired over 100 law clerks, just one of whom is black.

Ginsburg’s hiring practices have been criticized for decades. During her 1993 confirmation hearings, GOP Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah asked Ginsburg if a court might reasonably conclude that a small business in a majority black city that hired 57 white employees and zero black employees over a period of years was discriminatory. Ginsburg dodged, before Hatch pointed out that was in fact her own record of clerkship hiring in her 13 years on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

On Tuesday, October 9, the mood at the Supreme Court was agreeable:

Justice Kavanaugh hit the ground running:

May God guide Justice Kavanaugh and his colleagues on the Supreme Court.

Laird Wilcox researches political fringe movements and is the founder of The Wilcox Collection of Contemporary Political Movements, in the Kansas Collection of Kenneth Spencer Research Library at the University of Kansas.

A few days ago on another website, someone posted a link to his 1990 essay, ‘The Practice of Ritual Defamation’, which brought to mind Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the American Supreme Court.

See what you think as you read the excerpts below, beginning with the following (emphases mine):

Defamation is the destruction or attempted destruction of the reputation, status, character or standing in the community of a person or group of persons by unfair, wrongful, or malicious speech or publication. For the purposes of this essay, the central element is defamation in retaliation for the real or imagined attitudes, opinions or beliefs of the victim, with the intention of silencing or neutralizing his or her influence, and/or making an example of them so as to discourage similar independence and “insensitivity” or non-observance of taboos. It is different in nature and degree from simple criticism or disagreement in that it is aggressive, organized and skillfully applied, often by an organization or representative of a special interest group, and in that it consists of several characteristic elements.

Ritual Defamation is not ritualistic because it follows any prescribed religious or mystical doctrine, nor is it embraced in any particular document or scripture. Rather, it is ritualistic because it follows a predictable, stereotyped pattern which embraces a number of elements, as in a ritual.

Below are the elements which apply to Brett Kavanaugh in his nomination process:

2. The method of attack in a ritual defamation is to assail the character of the victim, and never to offer more than a perfunctory challenge to the particular attitudes, opinions or beliefs expressed or implied. Character assassination is its primary tool.

None of Kavanaugh’s accusers or their enablers have come up with any details about these alleged assaults. Yet, on Thursday, September 27, he said that the damage is done. His family and name had been ‘totally and permanently destroyed’, his prior life now ‘ruined’:

One of his foes, a writer for Stephen Colbert’s show, agrees (Twitter account now private):

3. An important rule in ritual defamation is to avoid engaging in any kind of debate over the truthfulness or reasonableness of what has been expressed, only condemn it. To debate opens the issue up for examination and discussion of its merits, and to consider the evidence that may support it, which is just what the ritual defamer is trying to avoid. The primary goal of a ritual defamation is censorship and repression.

The Democrats and the media have been focussing on the emotions, language and optics surrounding sexual assault and male anger …

… not whether or not the allegations are credible. Digging around shows that, often, they are not:

4. The victim is often somebody in the public eye – someone who is vulnerable to public opinion – although perhaps in a very modest way. It could be a schoolteacher, writer, businessman, minor official, or merely an outspoken citizen. Visibility enhances vulnerability to ritual defamation.

5. An attempt, often successful, is made to involve others in the defamation. In the case of a public official, other public officials will be urged to denounce the offender. In the case of a student, other students will be called upon, and so on.

How many women emerged to claim that Kavanaugh assaulted them in high school or at university? Seven?

And what about the reaction from legislators attending his hearings?

7. Also to be successful, a ritual defamation must bring pressure and humiliation on the victim from every quarter, including family and friends. If the victim has school children, they may be taunted and ridiculed as a consequence of adverse publicity. If they are employed, they may be fired from their job. If the victim belongs to clubs or associations, other members may be urged to expel them.

His wife Ashley Kavanaugh and their school-age daughters have been assaulted and threatened.

Then-Judge Kavanaugh has now said he will no longer teach at Harvard, where he has been a lecturer for the past ten years:

8. Any explanation the victim may offer, including the claim of being misunderstood, is considered irrelevant. To claim truth as a defense for a politically incorrect value, opinion or belief is interpreted as defiance and only compounds the problem. Ritual defamation is often not necessarily an issue of being wrong or incorrect but rather of “insensitivity” and failing to observe social taboos.

No one on the Left cared about Kavanaugh’s moving testimony in his defence on Friday, September 28.

No one on the Left cared when an ex-girlfriend said the accusations were not true …

… or when a classmate defended him …

Or when Condoleezza Rice supported him:

As we have seen since the 2016 election, the Democrats have played these diabolical games at every turn. Unfortunately, over the past few weeks, it was Brett Kavanaugh’s to be the victim of their malicious tricks. Because mid-terms are coming up in less than a month — Tuesday, November 6 — the knives are out.

These are four of the Democrat senators who sat in judgement. From top left going clockwise, they are Cory Booker (New Jersey), Richard Blumenthal (Connecticut), Dianne Feinstein (California) and Kamala Harris (California). Feinstein employed the Chinese spy:

Are they the ones well placed to judge a man who successfully passed six FBI background checks, with results of a seventh to come?

This just shows the world what a stinking pile the Democrat Party is.

And, no, they do not deserve to be called the Democratic Party, because they can no longer live up to the name.

Before this started, I had no opinions one way or the other on Brett Kavanaugh. However, on Sunday, I said a prayer of thanks that he is the newest Supreme Court justice in the United States.

In closing, may justice be done to all those who have ritually defamed Brett Kavanaugh.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018 is the date of the mid-term election in the United States.

I hope that my American readers are galvanised to go to the polls or have already voted where early voting applies.

Voter registration deadlines vary by state and, in some, it is too late to register now. However, there is still time to register in many others. Double check the information in the chart below against USA.gov and US Vote Foundation (H/T — The Conservative Treehouse):

I really hope that Americans have seen through the Democrats this year:

This is what President Trump had to say at the rally in Topeka, Kansas, on Saturday, October 6:

The next two posts will describe Democrat tactics in more detail. Stay tuned.

On Saturday, September 29, 2018, Kanye ‘Ye’ West was a guest star on NBC’s Saturday Night Live.

As a Trump supporter, he wanted to wear his MAGA — Make America Great Again — cap, but the show’s cast and crew told him not to.

Actor Chris Evans, who appeared on the show that night, took strong exception to West’s open support of President Trump. I would suggest reading what West says before reading Evans’s tweet, then comparing and contrasting the two perspectives:

Candace Owens, about whom I wrote yesterday, made an excellent point about the Democrat plantation (language alert):

Owens sat through Saturday Night Live to watch her friend West, whom she has encouraged to speak out in favour of Trump:

Kanye had the closing segment and was booed. His final comments about the banning of his MAGA hat were not broadcast. He donned his cap and called his fellow entertainers ‘cowards’. Here’s the clip that was censored. The first 30 seconds are the best:

Here are two excerpts:

This was Candace Owens’s take on her friend Kanye and Saturday Night Live:

Yep. It happened after the 2016 election to Kanye, and, sadly, it’s possible this could happen again.

Although I reserve the words ‘hero’ and ‘bravery’ for military personnel, it is true that West is taking a huge risk in openly supporting his president:

No doubt ‘Ye’ is delighted to have Candace Owens as a friend.

In closing, I wanted to say a few words about the environment in which Chris Evans grew up. His hometown of Sudbury, Massachusetts, is one of the nicest towns outside of Boston. His father is a dentist and his mother is an artistic director at Concord Youth Theater. Concord is another splendid town outside of Boston, made famous by the American Revolution. Both are upmarket communities which attract rarefied, wealthy people.

Chris Evans’s siblings are or have been in the arts. His brother is an actor. Their uncle Mike Capuano is a Democrat congressman representing parts of Boston, Cambridge and Somerville. Capuano’s seat used to be Tip O’Neill’s, Speaker of the House during the Reagan years.

Chris Evans has never had to want for much in his life growing up. Given his surroundings and family, he had the best of everything.

Candace Owens expressed it well to Breitbart on October 1 (emphases mine):

“Chris Evans sounds like a plantation owner,” Owens told Breitbart News, referring to Evans as “Captain out of touch with America,” poking fun at his most famous role as Captain America.

“It’s them that think their ideas are supreme and superior,” Owens said of members of the media and the left-wing Hollywood elite. “Evans didn’t challenge Kanye’s statements. He simply launched a personal attack”

“It was the euphemistic equivalent of Evans calling Kanye a dumb — …

You can fill in the rest … And, yes, Owens did say the word. She must be steamed about this, because she also made a video about it — well worth watching. She wants to debate Evans:

This reply from an Evans fan to his (Evans’s) tweet about West seems to corroborate her words: I’m not going to show it here, so see it for yourselves. Wow. Just wow. Be sure to see the opposing replies in the thread, accompanied by photos. The truth is coming out about the Left, that’s for sure.

It’s a pity Evans fails to understand that 98% of Americans have not shared his life experience.

That’s why they voted for Donald Trump in 2016 and will vote Republican in November 2018.

They would like their children to have the same opportunities that he did.

Maybe Evans doesn’t want that to happen.

For over a year, Candace Owens, Communications Director for — Turning Point USA — has been urging American blacks to leave the Democrat plantation.

I’ve been following her during that time and have bookmarked several of her tweets.

As the Dems are showing the world what a psychological Crazytown they inhabit, here are a few of Candace Owens’s recent observations, two of which are subtitled videos.

This tweet discusses President Trump, the man who is renting real estate for free in Democrats’ heads. Democrats will tell you that Trump is doing nothing for black Americans. Yet, Owens says the Dems have done nothing for blacks:

Another Dem tactic is to tell blacks that police officers are racist. In a public forum, Owens explains why this is patently untrue:

Here she explains why blacks should support Judge Kavanaugh. She says that empty accusations have also brought about harsh punishments before — namely that of black men in the 1950s who were lynched for the falsehoods levelled against them by white female accusers:

The entertainment world is no better, but most of us already knew that (language alert and typo):

Earlier this year, Candace Owens encouraged Kanye West to speak out. He does so at great risk to his career. Tomorrow’s post will have more on his Saturday Night Live (NBC) performance on Saturday, September 29.

Occasionally, I read James Howard Kunstler’s website, particularly his erudite blog posts.

Lately, he has been casting his gimlet eye on the Supreme Court (SCOTUS) proceedings with regard to Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Some of his readers are deeply disappointed with Kunstler’s take, as he is a Democrat — and so are they. Not all of what he has been writing is in support of his political party.

On September 28, he posted an article, ‘The Fog of Bad Faith’ (pardon the language in the URLs), which clearly states what Democrats really want by stymieing and stalling a vote on Kavanaugh as the next SCOTUS justice (emphases mine):

The issues in the bigger picture concern a Democratic Party driven by immense bad faith to any means that justify the defeat of this Supreme Court nominee for reasons that everyone over nine-years-old understands: the fear that a majority conservative court will overturn Rowe v. Wade — despite Judge Kavanaugh’s statement many times that it is “settled law.” What one senses beyond that, though, is the malign spirit of the party’s last candidate for president in the 2016 election and a desperate crusade to continue litigating that outcome until the magic moment when a “blue tide” of midterm election victories seals the ultimate victory over the detested alien in the White House.

Finally, a Dem sympathiser finally had the guts to say it.

The Dems are still licking their wounds over Hillary, nearly two years later, and they’re driven mad by the possibility that federal abortion law could be overturned. The latter, as Kunstler — and Kavanaugh — have stated, is unlikely.

On October 1, Kunstler went further with ‘Imaginary Monsters and the Use of Chaos’, which describes what is really happening with the SCOTUS nomination. This essay also upset his readers. He makes several good points, which should sound alarm bells in all sensible people.

First, there’s the absence of lucid thinking about the Kavanaugh nomination. An absence of objectivity and calm could have a deleterious impact on American society:

The Kavanaugh hearing underscored another eerie condition in contemporary USA life that offers clues about the combined social, economic, and political collapse that I call the long emergency: the destruction of all remaining categorical boundaries for understanding behavior: truth and untruth, innocent and guilty, childhood and adulthood, public and private. The destination of all this confusion is a society that can’t process any quarrel coherently, leaving everyone unsatisfied and adrift, and no actual problems resolved.

Secondly, once again, the Dems are sowing chaos, just as the Spanish Inquisition sowed fear centuries ago:

One element of the story is clear, though. The Democratic party, in the absence of real monsters to slay, has become the party devoted to sowing chaos, mainly by inventing new, imaginary monsters using the machinery of politics, the way the Catholic Church manufactured monsters of heresy during the Spanish Inquisition in its attempt to regulate “belief.”

Thirdly, when combined, hysteria and coercion result in totalitarianism:

The spirit of the kangaroo court has since graduated into business and politics where it has proven especially useful for settling scores and advancing careers and agendas dishonestly. Coercion has replaced persuasion. Coercion is at the heart of totalitarian politics. Do what you’re told, or else. Believe what we say, or else. (Or else lose your reputation, your livelihood, your friends….) This plays neatly into the dynamics of human mob psychology. When the totalitarians set up for business, few individuals dare to depart from the party line. It’s the perfect medium for cultivating mendacious ideologies.

The Democrats want a totalitarian state.

I disagree with Kunstler’s conclusions about an economic and social collapse — his ‘long emergency’, about which he has written for years — because that will not happen under President Trump.

However, a long emergency is exactly what will happen if Democrats win the House and Senate in November. Should that happen, all bets are off.

James Howard Kunstler is so close to walking away from the Democrat Party, but by his continued rejection of Trump and Make America Great Again policies, so far away from seeing the Democrats for what they really are.

The haze is lifting around him, but he continues to cling to the long emergency, which he was predicting 15 or so years ago. It still hasn’t happened.

Time to put the long emergency to bed, Jim, and embrace MAGA.

At the end of May 2018, I wrote about the splendid dinner my better half and I enjoyed at Villandry Great Portland Street in London.

We had planned to return this month. Unfortunately, only yesterday, we discovered that all three Villandry restaurants — including the one in Bicester Village, Oxfordshire — closed on August 9.

What awful news. The one in Great Portland Street offered exceptionally good value, especially on wine.

Investigating, I found that London Eater had a post on August 6, based on a Sunday Times article. The post said, in part:

Accounts made up to March 2017 show that Bicester — lost to the site’s landlord in return for a “substantial payment to the company” — made up 47 percent of the group’s entire sales annually. Paired with a 100 percent rent increase at Great Portland Street and a 16 percent increase at St. James’s, losses amounted to almost £1.5 million, compared to £683,564 the previous year.

London Eater noted that Villandry was not the only mid-market restaurant group in trouble:

In the last week, steak restaurants Gaucho and Cau have been lined up for sale, while burger chain Byron admitted that its finances were in serious trouble despite wholesale changes to operational strategy. Villandry, open since 1998, has introduced “pizza and prosecco” and bottomless brunches in an attempt to improve sales, but the news suggests that these innovations aren’t doing enough to account for such a sharp rise in costs.

On August 9, Eater announced that the restaurants had closed:

Eater first learned of the closure from a tipster, who reported that the Great Portland street restaurant was being boarded up this morning. Later, both the Great Portland Street and St. James’s reservation lines rang dead …

Eater reported that the restaurants were struggling last week, with recently filed accounts showing substantial losses. These were mostly accounted for by the closure of a restaurant in Bicester, which had accounted for 47 percent of group turnover 2016-17. Coupled with a doubling of rent at Great Portland Street and a 16 percent increase at St James’s, the restaurants simply could not survive.

Villandry’s final tweet appeared that day, announcing their closure:

On July 10, Time Out posted a brief review that captured the essence of Villandry Portland Street perfectly (emphases mine):

It’s not often you find a restaurant where diners are happy to eat alone, but this is one such place, owing to the unshowy, affordable menu and the chance to sit unhurried and unjudged by easy-going staff. The menu covers all bases: burgers, salads, steaks, plenty of fish and seafood, and weekend brunch. Duck confit was tender and moist, and plum crumble a deliciously fruity concoction topped with chantilly cream.

Villandry seems genuinely happy to accommodate your whims, whether that’s a simple quiche in the restaurant or takeaway chocolates from the compact grocery area. It seems they’ve thought of everything: come summer, there’s a juice bar and a counter serving frozen yoghurt and ice-cream.

We are sorry to see this loss from the London restaurant scene. I wish Villandry’s former employees well.

As most of the world knows, Judge Brett Kavanaugh has been going through Hades during his nomination process to the American Supreme Court.

His wife, Ashley, and their two daughters have also been put through much unnecessary harassment and abuse.

Ashley Kavanaugh has asked people to pray for them and for the nation, specifically by praying Psalm 40. Some of my readers prefer the King James Version below:

Others might prefer the English Standard Version (ESV):

My Help and My Deliverer

To the choirmaster. A psalm of David.

40 I waited patiently for the Lord;
    he inclined to me and heard my cry.
He drew me up from the pit of destruction,
    out of the miry bog,
and set my feet upon a rock,
    making my steps secure.
He put a new song in my mouth,
    a song of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear,
    and put their trust in the Lord.

Blessed is the man who makes
    the Lord his trust,
who does not turn to the proud,
    to those who go astray after a lie!
You have multiplied, O Lord my God,
    your wondrous deeds and your thoughts toward us;
    none can compare with you!
I will proclaim and tell of them,
    yet they are more than can be told.

6 In sacrifice and offering you have not delighted,
    but you have given me an open ear.[a]
Burnt offering and sin offering
    you have not required.
Then I said, “Behold, I have come;
    in the scroll of the book it is written of me:
8 I delight to do your will, O my God;
    your law is within my heart.”

I have told the glad news of deliverance[b]
    in the great congregation;
behold, I have not restrained my lips,
    as you know, O Lord.
10 I have not hidden your deliverance within my heart;
    I have spoken of your faithfulness and your salvation;
I have not concealed your steadfast love and your faithfulness
    from the great congregation.

11 As for you, O Lord, you will not restrain
    your mercy from me;
your steadfast love and your faithfulness will
    ever preserve me!
12 For evils have encompassed me
    beyond number;
my iniquities have overtaken me,
    and I cannot see;
they are more than the hairs of my head;
    my heart fails me.

13 Be pleased, O Lord, to deliver me!
    O Lord, make haste to help me!
14 Let those be put to shame and disappointed altogether
    who seek to snatch away my life;
let those be turned back and brought to dishonor
    who delight in my hurt!
15 Let those be appalled because of their shame
    who say to me, “Aha, Aha!”

16 But may all who seek you
    rejoice and be glad in you;
may those who love your salvation
    say continually, “Great is the Lord!”
17 As for me, I am poor and needy,
    but the Lord takes thought for me.
You are my help and my deliverer;
    do not delay, O my God!

O Lord, please thwart the attempts of the Kavanaugh family’s foes. May their pernicious deeds be brought to light and to justice, whether in the Senate chamber, at home or at school.

Please also preserve the Great Republic, the United States of America, today and always.

We ask this humbly through Jesus Christ our Lord who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.

——————————————————–

Forbidden Bible Verses, all being well, is planned for tomorrow.

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