For me it’s always been about one thing

some-still-call-him-pigThis poster hung on my dad’s garage wall for years.  It later hung on mine.  I haven’t decorated the garage at my new house yet, or even finished painting the drywall, but I may make a copy and hang it there, too.  I believe, while everybody’s human and there are a few exceptions, that law enforcement personnel are heroes.  Period.

The terrorism that overtook our state over the past year wasn’t a pipeline issue for me; it was a law enforcement issue, plain and simple.  The pipeline will be great for North Dakota, but that was none of my concern.  What I had a problem with was my friends having to change their online presence due to doxing and threats, their families being threatened, and residents of Morton County fearing for their safety while law enforcement tried to keep up with the influx of thousands of lawbreakers.

When protesters stood on Main Street in Mandan with a pig’s head on a stake, you bet that made my blood boil.  When they accuse my friends of atrocious crimes, yeah I take it personally.

That’s why it’s so cool to see our communities rally around our law enforcement officers.  Billboards, decals, rallies…we make it clear that we support and appreciate those who are sworn to protect and serve.  I hope we never have to endure another such event, but no matter what happens I think it’s pretty obvious that the residents of Bismarck-Mandan BACK THE BLUE.

Why North Dakota can’t afford to vote Democrat, not even for dog catcher

north_dakota_wayIt’s that time again, when Democrats don folksy apparel and adopt phrases like “The North Dakota Way” and “working with both parties”. Don’t fall for it. Don’t vote Democrat, not even for dog catcher.

Even Senators Conrad and Dorgan (now retired after decades of damage) started small. Decades later they were North Dakotans on paper only, maintaining shoebox apartments in Bismarck to stay eligible for reelection. Their final legacy: casting deciding votes for Obamacare, legislation wildly unpopular with North Dakota voters, then retiring to multimillion dollar East Coast homes near their lobbyist cronies. Was that the “North Dakota Way”?

Then we elected the “Independent Voice™” for North Dakota, Heidi Heitkamp, who has since voted with her Democrat Party puppet masters 97% of the time according to Congressional Quarterly. We should have seen that one coming.

Democrats never actually campaign on what they stand for. Where are the campaign ads saying they support Obamacare, amnesty for illegals, the right to abortion, or gun control legislation? The ads promising to punish big corporations and advance the homosexual/transgender agenda? Conspicuously absent, but Democrats are beholden to people who want these things because their votes are guaranteed. Deception and feel-good rhetoric are required to get yours. Guess who they’ll serve.

The deal-breaker issue for me will always be religious liberty.  The candidates at the top of the Democrat ticket are hostile toward people of non-Muslim faith, no matter what they say.  At best, they claim to support your “right to worship”, which slyly confines religious liberty to your church building or (for now) your home.

Find an issue that’s popular in North Dakota, and Democrats are on the wrong side of it. Compare their campaign marketing to their behavior once elected. A Democrat elected to local office this year could cast the deciding vote for disastrous federal regulation in twenty years. We can’t afford to advance their dangerous ideology based on platitudes and deception.

North Dakota quietly continues banishing those pesky Indians

1804_01In 2009 I posted this example of the fact that Native American imagery is a matter of respecting someone’s heritage in North Dakota, not a “Hostile and Abusive” offense like the NCAA wants everyone to believe.  Native American imagery is on the side of the State Patrol’s vehicles, on our highway signs…it’s an honor, not a dishonor.

 

road_sign_40677That’s why I was surprised this week to find the same sign inconspicuously changed to just the shape of North Dakota.  No Hostile and Abuse™ silhouettes to get any pointy-headed liberals’ pantaloons firmly entwisted.  How was this decision reached, and who made it? I’d love to find out.

So, let’s see here…we’ve thrown the Fighting Sioux Logo back in the faces of those who gifted it to UND decades ago, we’ve quietly removed Native American imagery from the state highway signs…it’s almost as if North Dakota is ashamed of the culture and heritage of the indigenous peoples who reside here!

Political correctness is tyranny.  North Dakota has a long history of honoring the Native American people who live here.  It was remarked by a tribal elder that “We went to a hockey game, and they talked about the courage and integrity of the Sioux people. We looked at each other like, ‘Wow, we don’t even honor our Sioux warriors or veterans like this on the reservation.’ ”.  To banish all mention of these people for the sake of placating a bunch of liberal busybodies does more disrespect to the native people than any logo could ever do!

How long do you suppose it’ll be until the State Patrol is forced to spend tens of thousands of dollars hiring some out-of-state company to design them a new logo?

No free rides

decal_removal_36349I know you’ve seen them: those vinyl letters pasted on the back windows of almost any vehicle sold in Bismarck-Mandan, proclaiming the URL (website address) of the dealership which sold the vehicle.  Often they’re very large, almost always they use a rather unattractive font, and they’ve been a pet peeve of mine since they started popping up.

I’d figured that when I found myself in the position of buying a new vehicle, I’d propose that the dealership either remove said decals before I take the vehicle or give me a $300 payment or credit on the vehicle in exchange for leaving the decals on the car for one year.  After all, advertising has value.  Dealerships pay radio and TV stations to advertise for them.  But as a long time advocate of “if you want something done right, do it yourself” I decided not to do so when buying my wife a vehicle recently.  Also, the sales person is a friend and I didn’t want to dump that kind of conflict in his lap.

This reminds me of the occasional “offer” I receive – and others in the creative and technical fields receive as well – of doing something either for free or for a ridiculously low fee.  Invariably it comes with the promise that “you’ll get your name out there” (without actually saying where “out there” is) as a result of donating my time and work to said offer.

Right.  My name is “out there” plenty, and I have more than enough side work (mostly video, sometimes photo) to keep me busy – especially when juggling kids, a new house, and (from 2013-2015) serious health issues.  I think I’ll pass on such a promise.

In our photo club people who engage in photography and other pursuits for a living urge up-and-coming photographers to charge what they’re worth.  I like to hammer four little words into every such conversation: Your work has value.

So does someone driving around with your website emblazoned across their car window.  In fact, there are places that will pay you to put decals on your car and drive around with them. The car dealerships are well aware of what the product on their lots and in their showrooms is worth.  They’re not afraid to tell you and charge you accordingly.  Therefore they should not be offended if, no hard feelings, you take that new purchase home and promptly scrape off the uncompensated advertising as soon as is convenient.  That’s exactly what I did.  No hard feelings, but nobody rides for free.

Apparently we really could use around $35 million right now…

commish_thanksFeeling spunky from ramming through the FiveSouth project, the City Commission (with Commissioner Marquardt dissenting) is starting to talk about another sales tax. According to the Bismarck Tribune reported that the commission is examining the idea of taxing us even more to pay for road improvements.

If we need money for roads so badly, why were we throwing $35 million into a TIF district for the pet project of the Commission and their downtown cronies?

When that issue was brought up, Mayor Seminary (who I like personally, even though his policies drive me bat-scat crazy) simply said, “they were separate issues” (according to the Tribune).

Really?  If I tell my wife that I’m going to spend $1000 on a new big screen TV instead of replacing a leaky house roof or an ailing vehicle, do you think she’s going to consider them “separate issues” as the Mayor said?  Heck, no…and she’d be right (as usual).

Perhaps by “separate issues” Mayor Seminary means “we’ll just dip into the pockets of the citizens for the additional money”.  That’s something you and I can’t do; if we have financial responsibilities, we own up to them before recklessly spending money on foolish luxuries.  This is a concept that has completely eluded Mayor Seminary and the Commission.

If the City doesn’t have money to repair the roads it has, then it certainly doesn’t have the money to make some cronies’ pie-in-the-sky pet project a reality.

The lone voice of sanity, Commissioner Marquardt, can’t quell the stupidity on his own.  We need to get him some company on the City Commission.  Our city needs some responsible leadership from a Commission that will obey the will of the people and act in a fiscally responsible manner on our behalf.

An article the Bismarck Tribune probably doesn’t want you to see…but then again…

tribune_against_guns_2015-0415A couple of days ago the Bismarck Tribune ran an editorial against a bill restoring expanded rights for those of us who are licensed to carry concealed handguns – apparently without even reading the bill in question, by the way.  They make the dubious claim, “Don’t get us wrong, we are strong defenders of the Second Amendment.” while advocating against the rights of legal gun owners.

I’m not the least bit surprised that the birdcage liner newspaper of record here in Bismarck-Mandan would take such a position.  In fact, twenty-two years ago they pulled a stunt on par with the Fargo Forum’s recent attempt to use its front page to “shame” legislators who crossed the homofascists (oops, I did it again) by following the will of their constituents and voting against SB2279.

In this article from December 19th, 1993, the Tribune decided to “out” legally licensed concealed weapons permit holders just like the Forum decided to “out” those legislators.  The article actually listed the name of every concealed weapon permit holder in Burleigh and Morton Counties!

The article has not appeared online as far as I know, until now as I post it.  This is from the Tribune’s own computerized archive.  Sorry for the lack of formatting – apparently that’s a luxury the old computer system couldn’t afford.  I’ve stripped out the list of names.

Nearly 2,000 North Dakotans can legally carry a loaded, hidden handgun. But they're not law officers. These are the state's farmers, legislators, lawyers, service station attendants, salespeople and who, for protection and convenience, accessed the state's admittedly easy concealed weapon permit process. People like David O'Connell, a Democratic state senator from Lansford. ""I was threatened as a House member, a representative. I introduced a bill and I was told to withdraw it,'' he said. ""I had threats against me and my family.'' Since then, at the urging of law officers, a short-barreled .357 Magnum revolver travels with him on the 50,000 miles he logs yearly in District 6. Or Sen. Bob Stenehjem, R-Bismarck, who applied for convenience: His permit lets him take his Smith & Wesson .44 revolver to the field and range without attracting attention from law officers. ""I don't use it so I can walk around Kirkwood (Mall) with a pistol,'' he said. Or Todd Porter, who directs Metro-Area Ambulance Service and also carries a handgun in his vehicle for protection. Or 89-year-old Fred (last name redacted by Bismarck-Mandan Blog) of McClusky, who worked for years with the Sheridan County Sheriff's Department. Now, his permit is insurance. ""When I retired, the sheriff says, "Why don't you get a concealed weapon permit, in case sometime we might need you.' '' Or Paul (last name redacted by Bismarck-Mandan Blog), who said his license allows him to target shoot and keep a handgun in his work van without worrying about the sheriff. His wife and son also have a permit. Or 1,978 others: Men, women and families from Rhame to Pembina, Wahpeton to Williston. ""These people who have concealed weapons permits are law-abiding citizens,'' said Burleigh County Sheriff Bob Harvey. Generally, law officers don't worry about those who legally carry concealed weapons. ""I'm more concerned about the criminals who are carrying guns,'' said Morton County Chief Deputy Ken Helmer. ""It's the unknown out there that we worry about.'' Still, those responsible for issuing permits say requirements should be tightened. Now, 10 open-book test questions and seven shots from seven yards separate the legal from those who'd face a class A misdemeanor if caught hiding a handgun. ""It's not that hard. If you took your hunter safety test, I'm sure you took a tougher test,'' said Bismarck Police Chief Robert Matzke. ""The actual shooting should be more difficult.'' And Bill Broer, director of the state Bureau of Crimimal Investigation, would only say the test ""isn't that difficult.'' Only people convicted of felonies, some violent misdemeanors and those with confirmed mental problems are ineligible. In Bismarck, the sheriff and the police chief must clear the application - by conducting background checks - before it's forwarded to BCI. Local law officers, lacking discretionary powers, admit they've had to uncomfortably approve shady-looking applicants. ""I've had a few of them,'' Morton County Sheriff Leo Snider said. ""There's a lot of people I don't trust with a weapon.'' If they meet legal requirements, Matzke said, all he can do is ask hard questions. ""I question some reasons,'' he said. ""I ask if they really need it. But if they demand it, I really don't have the authority to deny it.'' The shooting test requires the applicant to fire 10 rounds in five minutes at a large target seven yards away, and hit a human silhouette at least seven times.But the test's aim, said a Bismarck firearms instructor, isn't to ensure marksmanship, just competence. ""If the state was looking for accuracy, it would be too easy,'' said Mike Stensrud. ''If the state was looking for proficiency - know how to load the gun, know how to shoot the gun - I think it's adequate.'' So far this year, 42 Bismarck residents have received concealed weapon permits. And recent changes in Washington affecting handguns have at least raised local interest in the permit process. ""There's been more questions,'' Matzke said. ""But nothing to show an increase.'' Applicants list their reason for applying on the application. ""Most people list self-protection, or they want to carry it out for target practice,'' Harvey said. ""And some people just feel better with it.'' But packing a gun for protection isn't always the safest course if a struggle erupts, Harvey said, because sometimes it's pointed in the wrong direction. ""Any person carrying a gun could cause their own harm, could cause their own death. A lot of people have been shot with their own gun.'' Gun owners and target shooters often apply for concealed weapons permits, Matzke said, even when they don't need it. In North Dakota, a handgun is usually legal as long as the handgun isn't tucked under a seat, shoved in a glove box or hidden from view under a coat.


The following fields overflowed:
PUBDATE = Sunday, December 19, 1993


Morton County residents permitted to carry concealed weapons:
(List of names redacted by Bismarck-Mandan Blog)


(Source: Bureau of Criminal Investigation.)


The following fields overflowed:
PUBDATE = Sunday, December 19, 1993


Burleigh County residents permitted to carry concealed weapons: 
(List of names redacted by Bismarck-Mandan Blog)


(Source: Bureau of Criminal Investigation)
The following fields overflowed:
PUBDATE = Sunday, December 19, 1993

I used to think that the Tribune would probably prefer that North Dakotans forget that they ever pulled this childish little stunt, basically publishing a shopping list for gun thieves and possibly putting people’s safety at risk (including mine)…but given another recent display of animosity toward North Dakotans lawfully carrying concealed weapons, after passing the required background checks, I’m inclined to believe that they aren’t ashamed of it at all.

So tell me again how the Tribune staff are “strong defenders” of the Second Amendment?

Fargo Forum group attempts to whitewash sexual activist ban

forum_whitewash1Boy, the sexual activists were angry once sanity prevailed and SB2279 was defeated in the House.  Their social media was replete with f-bombs and the like, and the Fargo Forum group was ready to hop into the action with its inflammatory front page attempting to “shame” legislators who did the right thing.  Well, it didn’t end there.

Apparently a coffee shop in Fargo decided to have its own tantrum and ban legislators who voted against SB2279.  The ironic part is that the same legislators who were banned totally agree with the shop’s right to deny service to whoever they want!  That kinda took the wind out of the sails of the movement and proved the point the opponents of SB2279 are trying to make, so the activists had to do a “we were just kidding” backpedal job.  The Forum was more than happy to oblige.  Too bad for them there’s that Internet.

forum_whitewash2Here’s the original article from April 3rd at 6:48pm.  The link is here.  If they remove it or rewrite it, the PDF is here.  Note that while the idea is referred to as absurd, only to make opposition to SB2279 seem similarly so, there is no mention that the ban is a joke or “mockingly declared”.  The article claims:

Effective immediately, if you’re among those who voted against Senate Bill 2279 you’ll be shut out completely from the Red Raven.

Apparently someone realized that this probably wasn’t going to go well, predictably so.  After the news story about the ban aired on the Forum’s TV stations, someone probably figured out that this wouldn’t bode well for the cause, and an article published online shortly thereafter by the Forum group paints the stunt in an entirely different light:

forum_whitewash3Here’s the article from later that evening at 7:31pm.  The link is here.  If they remove it or rewrite it, the PDF is here.  In it, the ban has now become a ‘ban’, and it is being portrayed as something totally different:

  • “mockingly declared”;
  • “satirical”;
  • “a joke”;
  • a “fake embargo”;
  • a “satirical, political statement”

Right.  Kinda of reminds me of that Seinfeld clip where George quits his job in a spectacular fashion, then realizes that he’s made a mistake. Mr. Costanza acts like nothing ever happened, he was “kidding”, and that he can’t believe that anyone would have thought he was being serious:

So, which was it – coordinated media effort to keep the agenda plodding forward, or simply sloppy reporting from a historically biased media source?  Either the Forum group got it wrong in the first report or they had to help whitewash the ban after that report hit the air.  The timeline leads me to believe that this was intentional.  The person interviewed at the coffee shop made no mention of it being anything other than a serious ban in the original article despite being quoted four times.  The attempt to walk it back came later.

The fact of the matter is that the tiny minority of sexually disoriented persons in North Dakota and their vocal activists do not reflect “North Dakota values” as they proclaim, and in fact want a one-way street of discrimination and intimidation of people who don’t think the way they do or condone their choice of behavior or lifestyle.  Too bad.  They can try to have these little temper tantrums and even get left-wing media to amplify their ranting, but that doesn’t change the fact that individual liberty prevailed this time.

Fargo Forum proves that SB2279 was about intimidation

260748399-The-Forum-Friday-April-3-cover-originalThis is the “objective journalism” we get from the birdcage liner known as the Fargo Forum.  It proves what I’ve been saying all along: SB2279 is about intimidation.  Here they attempt to “shame” legislators who voted against this abomination for their vote to uphold religious liberty.

Rep. Boschee also made a veiled threat during the floor debate in the House chamber today, when he pointed toward the homofascist attacks on Indiana and Arkansas in the wake of religious liberty legislation being passed in those states.  He implied that the same sort of thing would befall North Dakota if they didn’t fall into lockstep with the other states currently being bullied and extorted into catering to 2.3% of the US population.

This is the “love” and “equality” you find from the sexually disoriented.  They talk a good game when they emote their way through committee hearings and even floor discussion, but what it comes down to is unparalleled vindictiveness.  That’s what SB2279 was all about.

So, I hopped into Photoshop to correct the cover of the Forum:

260748399-The-Forum-Friday-April-3-cover-accurateSB2279 had so many problems simply in its mechanics or lack thereof, but the “big picture” really is that this legislation has a well-documented track record as a blunt instrument used to persecute persons of faith.  The proponents tried to make it about “housing and employment”, but this legislation is most prominently used to go after Grandma when the convictions of her faith lead her to decline providing flowers for a homosexual “wedding”.

Stay classy, Fargo Forum.  No wonder you’re a dying breed.

Oprah: “White people just have to die.” No, that’s not what she meant

 

oprahSo this weekend I saw a Facebook link to web article expressing outrage at a video in which Oprah purportedly makes the comment portrayed in the graphic above.  Well, that’s provocative.  While it’s implying something she didn’t mean, it also highlights something that Oprah isn’t counting on.  First, let’s point out what even the article admits she said:

“There are still generations of people, older people, who were born and bred and marinated in it, in that prejudice and racism, and they just have to die,” she proclaimed.

So what Oprah isn’t saying is that all white people should just die.  We get that.  But she’s still tragically mistaken.

What she’s saying is that there are generations of people alive right now who grew up with racism, and that they’re probably never going to see things differently.  Her hope, as I infer from the quote, is that when those people eventually pass away that racism will die with them.  Sounds like a plausible idea and a reasonable hope.  But there’s a problem.

Liberal progressive leftist Democrats have instituted a replacement for that racism in the form of modern day Racism™.  Race is an industry now, and business is booming.  These days, simply disagreeing with a leftist of any origin is immediately Racist™, and actual race doesn’t even need to be involved.  It’s gotten so bad that Godwin’s Law may have to be clarified to add “Racist” alongside “Nazi” as a reflexive insult when someone is losing an argument.

The generation(s) to which Oprah is referring will be gone someday.  Unfortunately they will have been replaced with a battered and fatigued generation of Racists™ who may not even understand the history of race relations in the United States.  They certainly won’t be living in realization of Dr. King’s dream, where people are “judged not by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character”.  Sadly, you can thank the left for that…the very people who claim to be the most compassionate and the most color blind. From inside Oprah’s bubble, I doubt she’s got the slightest clue what’s coming.

Tribune article features quote highlighting one-way liberal “logic”

tribune_012215Tinfoil-hat liberal groups are active as ever in North Dakota, and they were in full batscat-crazy mode this week at a hearing for modifying the state’s legal levels of TENORM (technologically enhanced, naturally occurring radioactive materials if I remember correctly).  At the forefront is the Dakota Resource Council.  One of their minions made a comment that caught my eye immediately.  According to the Tribune:

Kathryn Hilton, of DRC, challenged the Argonne study because it used computer models instead of testing radioactivity levels from affected sites.

Well, now…wait a minute.  Someone should point out to Ms. Hilton that, according to her fellow advocates, computer models are gospel.  That’s what they’ve been insisting for twenty years or more in order to advance us toward global socialism (the only purported cure for global cooling warming climate change).

The only way one can “prove” that American SUVs are causing global cooling warming climate change is by programming computer models to say so.  That assumption is “baked in” when the simulations and models are first constructed.  That’s how scientists can be so confounded at the lack of warming which their models predictably foretold, yet bears no correlation to the actual data.

In other words – no, in Kathryn Hilton’s words, computer models are not the same as actual observations and data…two things that don’t bear out the AGW (American-made Global Warming) theory.  Yes, theory.

Just this week I was engaged in a discussion where it was pointed out that none of these liberal positions have a leg to stand on in that they have to constantly violate their own precepts in order to adapt their “logic” to fit the premise of the day.  If the liberal mind was made into a city, it’d be an impossible place to navigate since there would be no two-way streets.  This single quote, while largely unnoticed, is a perfect example.