September 12, 2010
DON’T GET COCKY: Past performance is no guarantee of future results.
DON’T GET COCKY: Past performance is no guarantee of future results.
GETTING IT WRONG: Judy Thomas is a good reporter, and she’s interviewed me in the past without problems. But this article on militias and “state defense forces” is just a mess. In my experience, when that kind of thing happens it usually means that an editor rewrote the story, though that’s just a guess here. Anyway, some clarification follows.
When I spoke to her, my key point was that State Defense Forces, or “State Guards,” aren’t militias at all. Militias are under Article I, sec. 8, and 10 U.S.C. sec. 311. State Defense Forces are “other troops,” under Article I sec. 10 and 32 U.S.C. sec. 109, which provides:
In addition to its National Guard, if any, a State, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia, Guam, or the Virgin Islands may, as provided by its laws, organize and maintain defense forces. A defense force established under this section may be used within the jurisdiction concerned, as its chief executive (or commanding general in the case of the District of Columbia) considers necessary, but it may not be called, ordered, or drafted into the armed forces.
These are not — as you might think from reading the article — renegade “militias” organized by anyone who might want to. They are Congressionally authorized military forces, supposed to be there for use within a state if the National Guard is overwhelmed or unavailable because of foreign deployment, etc. Unfortunately, this discussion gets all mangled in the article and the distinction isn’t clear at all. So, here’s a nutshell summary:
We have the armed forces of the United States. Those include the National Guard, which — though occasionally called “the militia” — is really troops under federal control, as made clear in Perpich v. DoD, which held that National Guard units may be sent abroad over the objection of their governor. (Technically, National Guard members are enrolled in both their State’s National Guard, and the National Guard of the United States, but the latter trumps in the event of a dispute).
The State Defense Forces are troops raised by states with the consent of Congress. They’re not militias, either, but they have no dual Federal role, and can’t be “federalized” as the National Guard can.
We also have, again as recognized by both federal and state statutes, an “unorganized militia” of the states, and of the United States. This includes most male adults and — in some states — females, too.
Some folks in what remains of the “militia movement” favor the establishment or expansion of State Defense Forces in their home states. They may want to join them, too. Nonetheless, those Forces aren’t militias, any more than the membership of “militia movement” folks in police forces makes the police a militia.
Despite the obligatory SPLC scaremongering about militias and State Defense Forces, there are undoubtedly more militia members belonging to law enforcement — and there have certainly been far more incidents of law enforcement misconduct of various kinds around the country — than State Defense Forces.
States could, of course, go back to the traditional militia structure, which obtained until the passage of the Dick Act and related changes in the early part of the 20th Century. In that setting, prominent individuals might raise a regiment and serve as its colonel, all under the supervision of the state. That’s how things used to work. I doubt that will come back, though if states get broke enough, who knows . . . .
UPDATE: Reader Arnold Steed writes:
I was happy to see your post on “state defense forces.”
I’m a member of the Texas State Guard, and it is the policy of the Guard not to recruit anyone who is a member of a gang or a paramilitary (militia) group. We’ve recently had a lot of training along the lines of recognizing such individuals so we don’t recruit them inadvertently. The concern is that members of these groups are trying to get into the Guard in order to receive training and bolster their credibility by affiliation with the official State Guard. I think the latter is the main motivation… we don’t do much weapons training and focus on disaster response: shelter management, search and rescue, etc.,
(Incidentally, you’re responsible for my seeking out the Texas State Guard in the first place. I had no idea such a group existed until you did a post about State Guards several years ago. I have a history of asthma, which kept me out of federal service even though it’s no longer a problem.)
There are a lot of people who aren’t eligible for the military for age or health reasons who’d still like to serve. This provides another possibility.
SOMEBODY SHOULD HAVE THOUGHT OF THIS SOONER: Gawker: We Will Pay Donald Trump To Shut Up.
POLL: Statistical Dead Heat In Delaware. But O’Donnell is ahead by three, which is within the margin of error.
BREITBART AT 9/12 RALLY: ‘I want to save the country with you!’
GERARD ALEXANDER: Conservatism does not equal racism. So why do many liberals assume it does? Because they’ve got nothing else, and their self-esteem is threatened.
THE ECONOMIST calls for memories of 9/11, and the comments fill with anti-semitic rants.
UPDATE: Reader David Block notes that the antisemitic comments have now been deleted. That was fast.
BORING. “Obama’s public persona is so predictable and his image so overexposed that even the left is over him. He’s gone from fascinating and cool to a crashing bore in less than two years. . . . Obama was in essence the latest trend, equivalent to this season’s fashion or the newest cell phone, which they had to have. But trends by definition come and go.”
AUSTRALIAN LAW PROFESSOR SMOKES KORAN IN A JOINT. “While an American preacher placed himself at the centre of an international storm by threatening to burn copies of the Koran over the weekend, a University of Queensland academic has posted an internet video of himself using a page from the Muslim holy book to roll and smoke what appears to be a joint.”
Related item here.
CHEERY: “The economy and the markets are broken.” Not sure I buy this analysis.
AUSTAN GOOLSBEE: No Relief Coming In The Jobs Market.
LIKE TOTALLY 80S: How To Look Like Joan Jett. Actually, the photo is an improvement over the original, and I say that as big Joan Jett fan. (I’d post the story about my friend Ralph and Joan when she played at Toad’s Place, but it’s probably not suitable for a family blog . . . )
OF COURSE! IT MAKES IT . . . DELICIOUSER! “You’re adding Crisco and powdered sugar to Marshmallow Fluff?”
IT’S FOR THE
CHILDREN “EMERGING ADULTS!”
TALKING ABOUT the Voluntary Human Extinction Movement.
HAVING FUN WITH personal camera drones. Where were these things when I was a kid?
THIS MAY BE ANOTHER REASON TO DONATE BLOOD: Iron overload may accelerate Alzheimer’s.
UPDATE: Reader Jim Martinec writes with a correction: “As a hospital blood bank manager I always appreciate your messages promoting blood donation. However, I think you may have misstated the thrust of the article on iron overload and Alzheimer’s. In the paper brain cells become overloaded with Iron because the transport channel to remove iron becomes damaged by zinc. Blood donation won’t help with this particular issue and, unfortunately, there is no indication that removing zinc from one’s diet would be helpful either.”
WASHINGTON EXAMINER: Bribing The Public With The Public’s Money. Hey, if politicians had to buy our votes with their own money, it’d be a whole different ball game . . . .
“DO I NEED A SPAGHETTI SPOON?” Yes, yes you do. They’re great. You’ll never go back to colanders.
READER JOSEPH GERWIN sends this picture of the St. Louis Tea Party rally under the Gateway Arch.
And there’s much more coverage at — where else? — Gateway Pundit.
UPDATE: Also, Stacy McCain et al. report from the D.C. Rally.
ANOTHER UPDATE: Liveblogging from Sacramento.
MORE: Reader Bill Lux reports from the St. Louis Tea Party:
I just spent a couple hours there. Wow. What a difference from the first one. Back then, it was just over 1000 people standing on the steps listening to speakers who were standing among them using a cheap bullhorn. Now, well look at the pictures. Full stage. Music. Concessions. And still just the nicest bunch of people you could possibly meet. A great time.
Yes, people have learned how to put on an event, and the base of support has gotten a lot bigger.
STILL MORE: A reader from DC writes:
At the 9/12 rally in DC the only people with inflammatory signs were the LaRouche democrats (Obama with a Hitler moustache). It was unfortunate, as they will probably be portrayed by the media as Tea Partiers – which, when I objected to their sign, they told me clearly they were not.
Yes, the press won’t try to provide “context” here.
HAZARDS OF TRAVEL: Road Warriors vs. The Bed Bugs. “By knowing what to look for and taking a few easy precautions when you travel, you can easily reduce the probability of bringing home one of these nasty bugs — or kill them before they have a chance to infest your house. . . . Use the luggage rack for your suitcase, and keep the suitcase off the floor or an extra bed. Don’t put clothes in the hotel dresser or drape them on hotel furniture. Consider setting your suitcase on the bathroom counter, where it’s less likely bugs will be. Inspect the entire bed area.”
Not the sorts of concerns I expected in the 21st Century. . . .
A ONE-DAY ONLY SALE: Firefly: The Complete Series on Blu-Ray for $26.99. (Bumped, because people seemed excited to hear of this.)
UPDATE: Reader Mary Kay Rohrbach writes:
Add my “thank-you” to the list. I just recently began to watch Firefly – slowly going through the discs via Netflix (when my darling hubby doesn’t bump me from the list). I’m about halfway through the series –but the Amazon deal is too good to pass up. It will arrive in a couple of days.
I believe Firefly came onto my radar through Instapundit.
And I signed up for Amazon prime because you recommended it.
I assume you understand the impact you are having on a certain segment of our culture?
Well, I try to promote the good stuff. Long-term, things thrive when people buy them, and waste away when they don’t.
HORMONE LEVELS predict sustained weight loss. “Ghrelin increases appetite while leptin reduces it. Someone with higher ghrelin and lower leptin before dieting might have a metabolism that pushes them to eat more. So once they lose weight and go off their diet their appetites drive them to put on too much weight again. Ghrelin might also cause abdominal fat accumulation.”
THE DOWNSIDE OF LIFE EXTENSION:
Russian PM Vladimir Putin has joked that he and his Italian counterpart Silvio Berlusconi could stay in their jobs until the age of 120. Mr Putin was responding to Mr Berlusconi’s offer at an informal meeting in Russia to help fund research into extending the average lifespan.
Perhaps it should only be available to those who don’t hold political office. . . .
THE CARNIVAL OF SPACE IS UP!
NONPROFITS: Tom Brady’s wrecked Audi was a charity freebie. “Brady isn’t the only Pats player getting Audis through the charitable partnership: In 2008, the company gave linemen Matt Light [stats], Stephen Neal, Dan Koppen, Logan Mankins [stats] and Nick Kaczur new Audi Q7 SUVs for six months.”
For all the talk about bloat and dishonesty in the for-profit sector, I think people are foolish to believe that the nonprofit sector — where it’s all other people’s money, without the discipline of the need to make, you know, profits, and with substantially less scrutiny from the press — is any better. Be sure to read the comments at the link. My favorite: “Why is he driving a car registered in NJ if he lives in Boston and it is primarily garaged in Mass? 30 days in the aggregate and it is unregistered operation. Mass law and tax don’t count I guess to the beautiful people.” Nope. Taxes are for the little people!
UPDATE: More on nonprofits here.
MARK LEVIN: Don’t Trust Castle On ObamaCare.
MICHAEL CANNON: Secretary Sebelius Slips on the Brass Knuckles.
PROF. JACOBSON: Southern Poverty Law Center Completes Its Descent Into Madness. “Whatever SPLC once was, it now is a bastion of political hackery which, by equating legitimate political opposition with criminal violence, is doing substantial damage to our national fabric. It is time for people of conscience to speak out against SPLC’s tactics.”
Yep, they’ve completely dissipated their moral capital.
UPDATE: Desperate To Connect Tea Party With Domestic Terrorism. The operative word being “desperate.”
Then they tried to portray it as a violent group when it wasn’t, and now they portray it as a racist group and it’s not. To me it’s sad that they would dismiss what is truly an expression of American democracy.
ANOTHER UPDATE: Reader Robert Racansky writes: “Dave Kopel made a similar observation 14 years ago.” Political hacks, collecting “dossiers” and spreading fear. Sounds almost McCarthyist . . . .
MORE: Speaking of desperation: L.A. Times: Obama’s electoral coalition is crumbling. “The swing voters who turned out in droves to support the president aren’t likely to back his party in November. Even core supporters express unhappiness with Democrats.” They go with the smears because that’s all they’ve got left.
I BELIEVE THAT REPORTS OF THE DEATH OF SEX are greatly exaggerated. The death of sex-as-schtick, now . . . well, that’s not dead either, but it’s looking kinda tired.
UPDATE: “Isn’t Camille Paglia Afraid Of Sounding Geezerly?” Well, just remember: “Geezerly” is nothing close to being the same as “wrong.”
A REPORT from Greece.
HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE: Student Loans Deflating A Bit?
THEY TOLD ME IF I VOTED FOR JOHN MCCAIN, THE POOR WOULD SUFFER: And they were right! US poverty on track to post record gain in 2009. “The number of people in the U.S. who are in poverty is on track for a record increase on President Barack Obama’s watch, with the ranks of working-age poor approaching 1960s levels that led to the national war on poverty. Census figures for 2009 — the recession-ravaged first year of the Democrat’s presidency — are to be released in the coming week, and demographers expect grim findings.”
UPDATE: Chuck Simmins emails:
Having written about the Census Bureau’s annual Poverty in America report for many years, I can make a few predictions.
While the increase in poverty for all races will be noted in news reports, little or no mention will be made of the record or near record lows in the Bush years.
Women reached record parity in wages with men during the Bush years. If reports about the recession layoffs hitting white males hardest are correct, it is entirely possible that wage parity will hit a new record. Fewer men working means working women will have a larger proportion of the wage earning population.
Much will be made of the numbers of people without health insurance. That said, this is a number that has only been tracked for about 12 years. We have no clear picture of what historic values were. It is entirely possible that the numbers from the Clinton bubble era are an extreme outlier and historically irrelevant.
12 PLACES TO GO IF THE WORLD GOES TO HELL. This is a recurring theme, lately . . . .
ANOTHER RUBE SELF-IDENTIFIES: Tim Rutten: Say, That Mr. Obama Is No Better Than Bush On Civil Liberties.
This keeps happening. Ah, but remember when you now-disappointed Obama supporters were lecturing us about the fierce moral urgency of change? With such overweening self-righteousness? Even as you resolutely failed to look at what was going on, or to inquire into what Obama was actually like? So pardon me, now-disappointed Obama voters, if I point out that you’re rubes. Again, and again.
I expected something more like what we got. And I turned out to be right, didn’t I?
STANLEY CROUCH: The Roots Of Black Homophobia.
SHANNON LOVE: Palin and the Left’s Status-Anxiety.
THE PRESIDENT BEGINS HIS HEALTH CARE BACKPEDAL.
READER PATRICK MCHALE sends this picture of the WTC Towers Of Light tonight. He writes: “I sent you a picture last year of the Light Towers taken with an Lumix LX3 purchased after your recommendation. During the past year I really started to enjoy photography, so I upgraded to a Panasonic GF1 and a few lenses.” Glad to be a good influence!
SCOTT JOHNSON: The Times In Campaign Mode. Is it ever out, any more?
THE PAPARAZZI are everywhere!
DATING ADVICE: “Well, for starters, what makes you think you ‘deserve someone great’? I’m not trying to be snarky; I really want to know. So often, most of us think we ‘deserve’ stuff — love, happiness, a great life — simply because we’re alive and breathing. Or because we aren’t, like, horrible, awful people. Or, because we had such crappy pasts, karma owes us something. Or … because we’re pretty.”
THEY CAN’T EVEN SELL JON STEWART on ObamaCare.
WALTER RUSSELL MEAD: 9/11, Islam and War. “The greatest victory we have won in this war came on one of its most questionable battlefields: in Iraq. It was not a military victory, though it opened the door to military progress. It was a moral victory. And it was not something that Americans imposed on Muslims; it was a choice that Muslims made. . . . What those Sunni Arabs in Iraq came to understand is the basic truth of this conflict. The war unleashed nine years ago is not a clash of civilizations between Islam and the west. It is a clash between civilization and barbarism, and in that clash the Americans and true Muslims are on the same side.”
A TURNING TIDE IN VENEZUELA? More people now talk about el Presidente Hugo Chávez like a dog. Woof-woof, big fella.
WELL, I’M SORRY THAT THIS turned out to be right, actually. But thanks.
SOCIAL MEDIA: Clever Burglars Using Facebook To Learn When It’s Safe To Rob Your Home. Well, since if they break in while I’m here they’ll likely be shot, this is probably smart.
COMPARATIVE DISADVANTAGE: “I worry America has too many lawyers. I don’t want to spend time having people sue me every day.”
AN AUDIENCE WITH the Queen of Kitchen Gadgets.
WHAT DAVID BROOKS MISSED: “The middle class have sent their children into fields like real estate and finance in part because that’s where the jobs are. That might be a good thing or a bad thing (the economic period of 2001-2008 leaned very heavily upon those sectors for growth), but that’s how it is. There is an economic motive for some of these social changes.” Yeah, not a lot of steelworker jobs out there.
BING AND GOOGLE. READER JAMES FOX writes: “You may be interested in today’s cover pages of the two search sites – quite a contrast.” Well, Google has a ribbon, though it’s easy to miss.
TEST-DRIVING the new Kia Optima.
SOME GREAT PHOTOBLOGGING from Scotty Graham.
NEW YORK POST: Beyond Mourning. “The attacks were acts of mass murder, committed to advance political goals that were — and remain — antithetical to civilization itself.”
ED MORRISSEY: Nine Years Later: The New Normal.
ON C-SPAN AT 2 PM: “Pilots and air controllers responsible for clearing U.S. airspace in the hours following the 9/11 attacks gather at the University of Texas at Dallas today to share their behind-the-scenes experiences and explain how their decisions helped to mitigate loss of life through the day’s chaos.”
BEWARE THOSE Australian police cruisers.
GERARD VAN DER LEUN: What I Saw: Notes Made on September 11, 2001 from Brooklyn Heights.
TOP TEN MOVIE GALS WITH GUNS.
IT’S THE 9TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE SEPTEMBER 11TH ATTACKS. Ninth anniversaries aren’t especially special, but still. . . .
REP. JOHN CONYERS’ WIFE heads off to prison.
MEGAN MCARDLE ON AUSTAN GOOLSBEE: “Every time I talk to Goolsbee, I come away with some fresh insight–usually, as he shreds some fuzzy misconception I’ve been cherishing. I’m thrilled that he’ll be CEA chair, hopefully performing the same exercise for the president. . . . Indeed, while I’m very happy that he’s to head the CEA, I confess I’m a little surprised. I had always thought of him as being too independent–and independent minded–to spend long in the administration.”
I know Goolsbee slightly, though much less well than Megan. I wish him luck in that snakepit, but . . . .
REMEMBERING the day.
Related: Move Over, Muppets: Bedbugs Take Manhattan (D.A.’s Office). “Right now Robert Morgenthau is probably thinking to himself, ‘Thank God I left that dump for Wachtell.’ Morgenthau’s sucessor as DA, Cyrus Vance Jr., is probably scratching himself.”
MISTER, WE’VE GOT A MAN like Herbert Hoover again. “For reasons fair and unfair, Obama, who inherited a bad recession and made it worse, every day looks more like a modern-day Hoover, whining about his problems, rather than an FDR cheerily getting things done. Inadequate to the task, Obama is discrediting the statism he was elected to restore.”
“HE SAYS HE’S A WWE FAN:” Video Of A Guy Tackling A Bank Robber In A Chokehold.
BARACK OBAMA and embarrassing stereotypes.
RELATING TO THE HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE TALK: Christine Hurt: Untangling Consumption Value and Investment Value of Higher Education.
THE PICTURE IS MUCH BIGGER: Only The Actors Got Small.
THEY TOLD ME IF I VOTED FOR JOHN MCCAIN, CEOs of failing companies would get huge paychecks. And they were right!
SCOTT RASMUSSEN: Watch West Virginia.
DAILY CALLER: Liberals desperate to connect Tea Party with domestic terrorism. Of course they are.
SOLAR PANELS? Not on the White House! “Bill McKibben, an environmental campaigner from Vermont with a flair for showmanship, was rebuffed Friday morning in his effort to get the White House to reinstall one of the solar panels that President Jimmy Carter had placed on the White House roof. . . . The world ‘stunt’ may have come up.”
AT PATTERICO, it’s a pledge drive.
MARKDOWNS ON Toys And Games.
CNN: 2 Muslims travel 13,000 miles across America, find an embracing nation. “Ali and Tariq were embraced nearly everywhere they went, from a Confederate souvenir shop in Georgia to the streets of Las Vegas, Nevada, to the hills of North Dakota where the nation’s first mosque was built in 1929.”
UPDATE: Reader Barry Dauphin writes:
Many media outlets (the usual suspects of the TV networks and NPR) have been working overtime to craft the narrative of America rejecting Muslims, and anti-Muslim sentiment rising, etc., etc. The MSM coverage of the President’s press conference should qualify as a campaign contribution. The MSM is trying to get the Dems back into the game. The MSM is almost wholly responsible for the Gainesville minister’s Koran burning becoming any kind of story. What a puny story this should be when anti-semitic crimes are never reported. This reverend in Florida is a complete nobody. The MSM whips up the liberal pundits into a frenzy, so they can execute their highly practiced indignation of how horrible America is. How pathetic and small they have become. The Democratic powerhouse machine from 2008 has been reduced to sending more cameras to cover the whack-job reverend than that church has members. All in the service to revive a comatose presidency.
Good luck with that.