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Works and Days

The Decline of Western Civilization in a Few Paragraphs

June 22nd, 2014 - 5:01 pm

So she was arrested on suspicion of her third DUI, and was let go after being arrested noticeably drunk and traveling 120 mph? Whoever dropped the case should be summarily put on leave, given that he or she is directly responsible for the subsequent death of Mr. Winslow — after Ms. Vazquez had been convicted of prior DUIs, warned by a judge, and then not charged after hitting 120 mph. (How does one manage to reach 120 mph with today’s cars on public roads while inebriated? How did the Highway Patrol catch her?)

Unfortunately, reader, it gets worse still, as every therapeutic trope of a sick society is soon invoked in her defense. The Bee story continues:

In defending Vazquez, DeOcampo told the jury that his client was a hard worker and had a job before her arrest in connection with Winslow’s death. He also said Vazquez was an alcoholic, an addiction that came from being molested as a child by a baby-sitter and a feeling of being unloved by a stepfather.

So here is her defense against the charge of vehicular murder:

She had a job once. Apparently, being employed is now not normally expected, but so aberrant to the degree that it counts as a plus in our current culture where millions have ceased working.

Then we hear that she is an alcoholic. But what does “is an alcoholic” mean versus “drinks whenever she wishes and gets into a car”?

Apparently that fact of drinking alcohol to excess is not a personal pathology for which she is morally culpable, but more an “addiction.” But it is not even an addiction, given that she was not responsible for drinking herself into a stupor, getting into a car, and serially speeding, knocking cars about as she went.

Note: I forgot to mention that she was facing still more pending charges and apparently out on bail at the very moment when she killed Mr. Winslow. So to the Bee:

She also is charged with drunken driving, hit and run and driving on a suspended license for an incident that happened July 9, 2011, just three months before the fatal collision that claimed Winslow’s life. Wright contends Vazquez was drunk when she hit two parked cars on Maple Avenue near Herndon Avenue.

Maple near Herndon is not far from where about 90 days later she killed Mr. Winslow.

I conclude that she had two DUIs (2006 and 2010), one let-go at 120 mph (2010), and got arrested in a fourth incident for hitting parked cars while drunk (2011). The prosecutor and/or judge in that latter case also should be held accountable, given that he let back onto the street a known DUI offender with two priors and a pending third.

Let us return to the extenuating circumstances: in addition to Ms. Vazquez’s addiction, you must understand that she was (a) molested and (b) suffered from a “feeling” of being unloved and (c) had a stepfather. Note that she and her attorney so far adduced no proof for any of these mea culpas, and her attorney seems to assume that millions of others likewise could claim in extremis that they were unloved and/or had stepfathers and thus have extenuating circumstances when they kill and maim others. It is now the sort of stock defense that at some point must have worked to be so frequently emulated.

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Top Rated Comments   
Meanwhile, I just received a $150 ticket from an aggressive, belligerent police officer for going 37 mph through a speed trap on a straight road in a sparsely populated, rural area, with an inexplicable 25 mph speed limit. Well, there is one explanation, of course: revenue collection from people enjoying quiet country drives in nicely maintained cars with out-of-state license plates. From the officer's attitude, you'd think I was a known, hardened criminal, instead of an Eagle Scout who was raised to be polite, to respect authority, and to obey the law. I agree fully with reedville's comment about "authority." It's about asserting power and collecting revenue these days. It's not about public safety, freedom, or productivity. I never imagined I'd say this, but I'm starting to feel like a chump for playing by the rules.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
What we are witnessing in our time is the total loss of the meaning, purpose, and real structure, i.e. the spiritual structure, of authority. "Official" authority now has no interest in promoting and preserving the productivity, freedom, and safety of society. It only exists to acquire more authority. This is done by destroying other legitimate authority wherever it exists, particularly the authority of the individual.

My wife works as an instructor at a community college as well as for a well- known social institution. In both cases the rules for the frontline teachers become ever more complicated and onerous. Those who try to exercise authority in the sense of imparting genuine practical knowledge in a results oriented way are exhausted and brought almost to their knees by bureaucratic requirements and restrictions. They cannot be allowed to function by their own common sense and by demanding that standards be met they believe are reasonable and necessary.

Poor Mr. Winslow represented the authority of a law-abiding, self-sufficient citizen who had a right to demand protection, justice, and respect. Too bad these are also an affront to the all-sanctimonious, all-aggrandizing Babel towers of authority we are coming into slavery to.

Tyranny is everywhere. The responsible, trustworthy, capable, self-governing person is a threat and an obstacle. His authority must be quashed.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
VDH, the way to make this all newsworthy...is to have a Winslow kill a Vasquez under the exact same circumstances.

To have 90,000 Western European children dropped off at the border and told we will simply pick up the tab.

To have the IRS audit the ACLU, ACORN/SEIU, Planned Parenthood ...AND turn over 1.1 pages about all their donors. Then "crash" all the computer evidence of these personal attacks and have the FBI refuse to turn away the illegal materials and the DOJ refuse to lift a finger to help the citizens under agency attack.

THEN you would have newsworthy stories. A dead Winslow at the hands of a drunk Vasquez or a Catherine Englebecht under totalitarian assault...simply isn't "news".

That's not a sick society, my dear cyberfriend. That's a dying one.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (138)
All Comments   (138)
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20 weeks ago
20 weeks ago Link To Comment
In discovering your site I am sorry to have gone overboard VDH, but it is unfortunate that alcoholism is and personal demons have caused so many untimely accidents and deaths.
22 weeks ago
22 weeks ago Link To Comment
Arresting, fining, and jailing people for simply being drunk while driving is evidence of our declining culture. Literally arresting innocent people (people who drive safely and didn't hurt anyone or anything) because you think the first action of government is to protect us from ourselves, rather than jealously guard our liberty, why act so surprised, when that same "compassion" of trying to save people from themselves lets killers go free?
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Does it change the whole complexion of the case if the drunk driver was a "White Hispanic"?
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
Wow! I couldn't finish reading this article because I started feeling ill. The depths to which our 'democratic' countries are sliding is really starting to seem beyond salvation. We can continue complaining and pointing fingers at the Liberal politicians and looking for conspiracies (of which all is truthful) but it won't change the reality. This being that it's
the electorate asking for, and demanding, this current state of affairs.
Here, in Alberta, we have a long and proud history of conservatism.
Ontario, on the other hand, has, almost, always been liberal. They pay 3X the consumer taxes (at the til) then we do. 5% as opposed to 14% and this doesn't even touch the difference in Provincial income tax. After 13 years of a corrupt and bankrupt Provincial government (worse than California) the electorate voted in the same party 3 weeks ago, albeit with a new leader. My sister-in-law's excuse for her liberal vote is that they promised tax credits for child care.?!?! They are a 6 figure family income. Their government takes 10's of thousands of dollars from their personal ability to create a healthy economy and, in return for a few hundred dollars in tax credits, they vote for lies, wreck and ruin. I can buy a whole lot of child care for the 13% of tax money I save by living in a tried and true conservative province.
Alberta even has a 'Heritage Fund'. This is a Provincial account that our government uses to set aside funds for a rainy day. We could never be bankrupt. Our brilliant conservative forefathers instituted this 40 years ago and it's now worth +/- $15,000 per every man, woman and child.
I don't need liberal hand-holding. I want honest, fiscally responsible government that understands the concept of free enterprise and keeps their hands out of my pockets.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
VDH reminds me in his writings of The Diary of Anne Frank, except he can leave whenever he wants.
I'm beginning to doubt that he is objective and/or courageous.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
Hispanic surname = Protected class in California
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
This is the society the liberal left has created.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
I agree with everything VDH says - I wouldn't be here if I didn't highly value his thinking - with the exception of one detail. We live in an era where defense lawyers (some) perform acts of the blackest evil, such as advising clients to make false charges of abuse and passing laws to make it harder to convict their clients (thus endangering us all). But I do not think it is wrong for a defense attorney to make far-fetched arguments (as long as the facts are true - big if, I know) in order to get leniency for his client. The rest of the system is another story.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
Some of you might benefit from opening a book and learning about how the world works. For instance, we no longer have the democrat machine politics of yesteryear in New York, Chicago, New Orleans, New Jersey, and the USA under FDR. No more costa nostra running major cities. At least now we have the illusion of Democracy in most places in the US, and that illusion is enough to placate americans.
As for 'the society dying and diseased' all I have to say is get a grip on reality. We have made great progress against racism, homophobia, and societal ills of all manner (e.g. poverty). The US has a cleaner environment than ever before. We have a GOP electorate that thinks they are right on everything and everyone else is a traitor.
What we don't have is a better class of politicians, that may be the one segment of society that never changes.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Some of you might benefit from opening a book and learning about how the world works."

What is the name of that marvelous book, and who the talented author?

No more Democrat machine in Chicago? Do the name Rahm Emanuel strike a familiar note? As for New Yoikes, well just good luck is all one can say.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
Dear Jeff2010, you idiot. See my reply to Art Chance's comment below.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
Keep your eye on the ball...she committed crimes and will likely be cut loose or receive a reduced sentence because some people are that easily fooled that prior victimization exonerates that person of any future crimes they may commit...that's part of the societal disease.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
No, we have the old Democratic machine politics "enhanced" by attorneys who misuse the civil rights laws to bully election workers. What we no longer have are the big Republican machines, and so the constituency for election fraud belongs to one party. The costra nostra was basically emasculated in the 60's. We also have a illegitimacy rate of about 50%, which is one of the few things that makes me really worried about America's future.

And we are making great progress towards misusing the idea of civil rights to marginalize traditional religion. Frankly, I would rather put up with the old soft discrimination of the "Gentleman's Agreement" days than suffer under that.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
We certainly haven't made any progress against the proliferation of idiots.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
You are, of course, referring to Jeff2010 himself. Someone so clueless that he doesn't realize he helped create the climate that Dr. Hanson is writing about. Prattling on about the "progress" we've made that has since been pissed away by the kinds of people he keeps voting for.
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
So society is doing quite well and is making 'great progress', and yet the 'GOP electorate' thinks it is 'right on everything and everyone else is a traitor'?

But that healthy energetic can-do society you describe is precisely what conservatives want, and say so in every campaign! So could it be that they ARE 'right about everything' and is it possible that in that sense, 'everyone else IS a traitor'?
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
That was all a totally sarcastic post right? Please tell me you were joking!!
25 weeks ago
25 weeks ago Link To Comment
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