Defund the police! Defund the police! What does it all mean?

NPR knows how to go after a guy. For instance, this hardball question to a Brooklyn College prof, who wrote a book about it:

“People ask the question, without police, what do you do when someone gets murdered?” asked NPR’s Leah Donnella. “What do you do when someone’s house gets robbed? What do you say to those people who have those concerns?”

You know, the oddball down the street who gets all flustered when his house gets robbed.

OK, but she did ask, and as you see, he got right down to it:

“Well, I’m certainly not talking about any kind of scenario where tomorrow someone just flips a switch and there are no police,” he began. [No switch-flipping!] “What I’m talking about is the systematic questioning [the best kind] of the specific [another best kind] roles that police currently [not in the long-ago] undertake, and attempting to develop evidence-based alternatives so that we can dial back our reliance on them. And my feeling is that this encompasses actually [!] the vast majority of what police do. We have better alternatives for them.” [Name one?]

Wins him points in the faculty lounge every day.

via Byron York’s Daily Memo


Of course not.

Consider the “senseless violence” that occurs on American roads every year. We should do whatever we can if it saves just one life, no?

Let’s see.

In late July 2012, a pickup truck packed with twenty-three people veered off a Texas highway and crashed into two trees.

Nine people were injured in the crash, but they were the lucky ones. The other fourteen occupants of the truck were killed. In the aftermath, bodies lay everywhere. Among the dead were two children. Alcohol was not involved, and there was no evidence of another vehicle at the scene. The weather at the time of the crash was dry and clear.

So why was the call for legislation not swift and immediate after such a terrible event? Because people knew that these sorts of things happen from time to time, and there is little, if anything, that legislation can do to change that.

Oh no! Say it ain’t so? Well . . .

. . . .  We could address automotive deaths at any time if we were truly committed to doing so. One piece of legislation could virtually guarantee that no one would ever die on American roads again. All we would have to do is to reduce the speed limit on every road in the country to five miles per hour. That would save more than just one life.

Of course, everyone knows that imposing a national speed limit of five miles per hour is ludicrous. It also would do more harm than good.

Think about it. The cost of policing would rise dramatically because almost everyone would want to drive much faster than five miles per hour. This would leave fewer police resources available for preventing and investigating other crimes. Few people would have the time to commute more than five miles or so, and even a commute that short would take two hours every day.

But the law would do more than upend lives. We might all starve because we would have profound difficulties keeping grocery stores stocked with food. We would also have trouble getting people to lifesaving medical care quickly. Many people would, in fact, die because we passed a law intended to save lives.

Fact is,


The “if it saves just one life” argument is usually nonsense. All human actions involve trade-offs. As the speed-limit example illustrates, a gain in one direction inevitably leads to losses in another. There is probably no such thing as a law that universally saves lives. There are only laws that save lives in one place in exchange for losing lives in another.

You mean . . . ?

When politicians say, “If it saves just one life,” they can appear to care deeply while simultaneously absolving themselves of the responsibility of crafting a rational response to a difficult issue. It allows them to trade on emotions instead of facts.

Well, some of them are good at that. Let’s, as hip people say, “Let’s unpack that.”

If we really believed that any law is justified if it saves just one life, we would require all Americans to pass a mental health evaluation on a regular basis or be institutionalized (more than 38,000 Americans commit suicide annually). We would outlaw all motor vehicles (almost 35,000 Americans die in vehicle accidents annually). We would require all houses to be single-story structures (more than 26,000 die in falls annually).

We would ban alcohol (almost 17,000 die annually from alcohol-related liver disease).

Oops, we tried that, didn’t we?

We would require people to be certified as swimmers before allowing them into any large body of water (more than 3,500 die from drowning annually). We would prohibit women from getting pregnant unless they had no family history of birth complications (more than 900 American women die in childbirth annually).

Of course, none of these things will ever happen, nor should they. Life is full of dangers that cannot be legislated away.


via The “If It Saves Just One Life” Fallacy – Intercollegiate Studies Institute: Think. Live Free.

Why I Support Justice For George Floyd But Oppose BLM

Black Lives Matter is on pace for hypocrites-of-the-year award.

BLM is silent about black lives taken by black criminals
Over 90% of Black American homicides are by black thugs (<1% by a white policeman).

BLM is silent about those black lives killed by blacks.

Justice? Really?

If to be “silent about injustice” is to be a perpetrator of injustice, then BLM is guilty of a grave injustice by their silence about blacks killing blacks.

If actions speak louder than words, then BLM’s message is that black lives taken by black criminals do not matter.

BLM is silent about blacks killing blacks because it does not suit the political narrative and purposes of the “progressives” who have hijacked the movement. It makes you wonder what those purposes are.


via Why I Support Justice For George Floyd But Oppose BLM | Capitalism Magazine

What a book review looks like when the author is “binary”

The reviewer is relentless in giving the author his wish, as in we-dare-not-call-they-he, how few they is, etc.:

Gessen’s credentials as an observer of autocracy are impeccable. Aged fifty-three, they (Gessen identifies as nonbinary) spent their childhood in the Soviet Union and the US, then moved back to Russia in 1991 to work as a reporter.

In 2012 they were fired as the editor of a popular science magazine for refusing to send a journalist to cover one of Vladimir Putin’s more ludicrous publicity stunts, flying a wobbly motorized hang glider to “lead” a flight of Siberian cranes on their westward migration.

One of the few out gay people in Russian public life, they became a target for homophobic politicians. In 2013 they left Russia after the passage of legislation against “homosexual propaganda” opened the possibility that the state would take away their children.

They is quite a good writer, we (I) suppose.