The Fall of the City on the Hill

It should be abundantly clear by now: party affiliation is irrelevant. Republicans, Democrats, it doesn’t matter. There is ONE party in Washington D.C. and that is the Ruling Elite. What the (ostensibly sovereign) American people want or don’t want, and what we think is absolutely irrelevant. We are merely a means to gaining and keeping power, nothing more. The Ruling Elite doesn’t give a damn what we think or want, and they don’t give a damn what the Constitution says or what it allows or doesn’t allow. They have made it plain that they are going to do exactly what they want, regardless of what we say about it, because they believe they know better than “the rabble” how our lives should be run. The Ruling Elite intends to take us – our society and our very nature as man – in hand and shape and fashion us according to their designs and purposes, and there isn’t a thing we can do anymore to stop it. I’m all for an Article V Convention of States to amend the Constitution and try to bring power back to the states. But honestly, the Ruling Elite don’t obey the Constitution as it is now; WHY would they suddenly decide to obey an amended Constitution? The truth that we are now forced to confront is that the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence are now nothing more than pieces of paper on which are written wonderful, deep, true ideas that no longer matter because few alive now lend them any credence.

The strength of the United States was never in our founding documents. Our strength always lay in two things: our shared belief in a higher, eternal, objective moral order, and our culture, which was shaped by that belief and which acted according to it. Our founding documents were reflections of those things, NOT their source. Those things, our belief and our culture, have both been utterly destroyed, and we live now in the ruin of a once great city on a hill. All that remains is to sweep away the remnant; the last bastions of the old order. And this is happening before our very eyes.

My friends, we are living in the final days of the United States of America as a free, classically liberal, liberty-loving society. There is no way back from here because the bridge back has been destroyed. What comes next…will be a nightmare the likes of which this world has never known, nor indeed will ever know again. The last redoubt of human freedom has fallen, and few there are to see or care.

Maranatha.

“Trump’s problem child”: Mark Levin, Alex Jones rage against Ivanka after her “uncomfortable embrace of refugees” – Salon.com

via “Trump’s problem child”: Mark Levin, Alex Jones rage against Ivanka after her “uncomfortable embrace of refugees” – Salon.com

The headline of this story should be, “Salon Stupidly Picks Fight With Mark Levin. Takes Predictable Drubbing.” When will the Left learn not to poke that particular bear?

America is Besieged by Traitors, and it is Obama’s fault

During his tenure in office, Barack Obama took every opportunity to drive the knife into this country’s back, and he filled the government at all levels with like-minded lackeys that continue to serve his agenda by undermining the new, duly elected administration. And now, information is trickling out about Obama’s backstabbing deals with Iran. Despite this, the man continues to roam free, and has boldly decided to reinsert himself into the realm of politics. What, if anything, do you think should be done about this?

Vox Simply Doesn’t Get it

via The outrage over Marvel’s alleged diversity blaming, explained – Vox

Once again, Vox proves to everyone just how tone deaf it really is.

Demonstrating the usual Leftist refusal to see reality for what it is, Vox continues to utterly miss the point, inserting its own biases and making excuses instead of listening to what people really think.

I have been reading and collecting comics my entire life. Believe it or not, the first thing I ever read when I learned to read at 5 years old was a Superman comic book. I read comics as often as I could as a kid, and I started collecting comics in High School. I was heart-broken when my entire collection, some of which was irreplaceable, was stolen a few years back. I’m 42 now, with kids of my own, and I have never lost my love for the characters, though the comics themselves, and the companies, have been losing my respect for years (DC is only just now beginning to get it back).

As an “OG” comic nerd, I stand solidly in the category of hating what Marvel (and to a lesser extent, DC) has been doing in recent years.

A character’s race or whatever is as immaterial to me as a real life person’s would be. Which is to say that someone’s race, etc., is to me, only one small part of the totality of who they are. So it’s not “diversity” that has pissed me off, it’s the alteration of long-established characters, done not for reasons driven by the story itself, but for outside, political reasons. And this is what Vox has either missed or ignored, as usual. No one cares if Marvel or DC creates a black or gay character. Just stop bowing to political correctness and ruining established characters.

As an example, DC has this newer character called Bunker. A member of the Teen Titans, Bunker can create solid objects out of psionic energy (think Green Lantern, but purple, and without needing a ring). As a gay Mexican, and possibly an illegal alien, Bunker checks several of the “diversity” boxes. But the character stands on his own as a good character, irrespective of his race or sexuality, because the creators made him a PERSON before anything else. Bunker is someone you can care about and sympathize with, whether you agree with some aspects of his character or not. And that is really the point.

I have long complained about comic books making the mistake of writing their characters as though they were just power sets in costumes, rather than PEOPLE first. Good stories flow from the motivations, desires, and conflicts of the people involved, not from editorial fiat. Instead of fixing that problem, however, Marvel made it worse, by writing characters as races, genders, or sexualities first, power sets and costumes second, and as people somewhere down the line, if at all. This is the result of the PC culture’s irrational mandate to seek diversity for its own sake. It has ruined most of Marvel’s core books, made them all but unreadable to anyone whose mind is not properly prepared (read: turned to mush), and alienated its core audience.

As a result, Marvel’s sales have slumped significantly, and a similar thing has happened to DC, though not to quite the same extreme. But notice that DC is in the middle of a course correction as well, with its (surprisingly fun) “Rebirth” storyline, whereby it is restoring its characters to their “Post-Crisis” incarnations and doing away with much of the mistake that was “The New 52”.

In DC’s case, most of its changes were made because it felt that “The Culture” demanded that their characters be more “edgy” and “relevant”, so it moved away from concepts like Superman as a “boy scout” who fights for “Truth, Justice, and the American Way” – particularly the last part; as if there’s something wrong with the American way. But, in the midst of the change, DC failed to understand that, when fans made fun of Superman for being so good (and for wearing his “underwear” on the outside), it was the kind of good-natured teasing that goes on between dear friends, not hatred for who the character was. DC forced Superman, and many other characters, to be more “relevant”. And the readers, unhappy with the fact that DC was not being true to who their characters were, bolted.

In other words, we understood that the people in those costumes were not behaving like “themselves”, and it was because something outside the realm of the comics was influencing events inside the comics, rather than the characters themselves. “Rebirth” has stated this outright. Look at the story’s concept: A force outside the DC universe has come in and altered things. Everyone is starting to realize that it’s somehow wrong, and they’re acting to fix it. It’s a tacit admission of the problem plaguing DC as a company, and the comic book industry as a whole.

Take that problem and multiply it by ten, and you have what has been happening at Marvel.

The fans rebelled because Marvel changed its characters for PC reasons, not because of things that happened in universe, and grew out of the characters’ motivations, actions and consequences thereof. And that is what Vox has missed or ignored, also for PC reasons.

That is the problem with Vox’s article, and it is the problem with many of their articles as well. They write stories designed to support their preconceived notions, rather than simply reporting the “news”.

Furthermore, Vox basically insults people by calling them racist/sexist/homophobe/etc. if they don’t like what Marvel is doing. They don’t have the intellectual honesty to really ask why long-time fans are angry, and they wouldn’t accept their answers at face value, anyway.

Vox claims that we don’t like what Marvel is doing because we are opposed to “diverse” characters, while ignoring the irrefutable evidence of past successful, “diverse” characters. When well-written, such characters can be compelling and relate-able, and that is what makes them successful, not their skin color or their sexual preference. But Vox’s article demonstrates that it doesn’t understand the industry or the fans at all. In fact, I bet they never actually talked to a run-of-the-mill comic fan before writing this article.

Comic shop owners order what their customers want, yes. And the system is set up the way it is because it works. And yes, I can tell you, as someone who’s always wanted to write for comics and never made it, it can be VERY hard to break into the industry. And good luck really changing anything if you do. But that is almost immaterial to what has happened to Marvel, and it’s entirely self-inflicted. If the fans had liked what Marvel was doing, they would have supported it with their dollars, and the same system would have reflected the fans’ happiness in Marvel’s sales.

The system is NOT the problem, as Vox claims; Marvel’s editorial choices are. But suddenly, when outsiders who want to protect Marvel’s “diverse” direction for political reasons, need an excuse for that direction’s failure, it’s the distribution model that is the problem?

I say thee nay. Vox is way off base here.

Marvel took an honest look at its sales, saw a sharp downward trend, and saw when it began, and they understood that the fans were unhappy with the direction they’d taken. Marvel finally realized that they are obligated to their fans, not to “outsiders” like the “media” who, really, couldn’t care less about Marvel’s comics, but simply demand political conformity. And so Marvel wisely decided to reverse course.

If they continue listening to the fans, and restore the status quo, they will, over time, see their sales increase again. But if they bow to pressure from people like the lock-step Leftists at Vox, they will drive their comics completely into the toilet, and they will ultimately cease to be as a comic book publisher. It’s their choice.

People don’t like to be beat over the head with other people’s views, and that is really what Marvel’s change in direction amounted to. And comic fans are very territorial when it comes to their books, especially longtime readers like myself, who read comics when it wasn’t cool, and when you could be ridiculed or beat up for it. Vox has a LOT to learn when it comes to understanding the way people think and why they behave the way they do, and it shows. Maybe next time they should try to actually find and talk to real comic fans, not just ‘journalists’ and industry types, who believe it’s in their interest to agree with the media. Vox should try finding out what the die-hard fans are actually saying, and report the whole story, rather than their PC version of it. THAT is what journalism is. If they do, they might find that their own readership increases, as well.

California Democrat’s Disrespect of A.G. Sessions Highlights Deeper Constitutional Issues

As reported at The Hill.com:

“Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) blasted Attorney General Jeff Sessions as “a racist and a liar” on Sunday, after Sessions’s comments about a federal judge in Hawaii.

Earlier this week, Sessions said he was “amazed” that a judge “sitting on an island in the Pacific” could halt President Trump’s travel ban on people from six predominantly Muslim countries entering the U.S.

“We’ve got cases moving in the very, very liberal 9th Circuit, who — they’ve been hostile to the order,” Sessions said in comments that drew considerable backlash.

But Sessions dismissed criticism of his comments on ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday, saying, “Nobody has a sense of humor anymore.”

Lieu fired back at Sessions on Twitter, calling him “a racist and a liar.”

“Actually, just joking. Oh wait, your record shows you are a racist and a liar,” Lieu tweeted.

I initially wanted to address the disrespect shown toward the AG

But I decided that I’m not even going to dignify the idea that Jeff Sessions is a racist. If you believe that nonsense, stop reading right now, because I can’t help you. No one can. You can’t fix stupid. Please go to your safe space until the adults are done talking.

Everyone with a functioning mind understood that A.G. Sessions was succinctly, and with a much more subtle wit, making the same general point that I am about to expound upon:

There’s a bigger issue involved here, and that’s Separation of Powers and the Rule of Law.

National defense is indisputably within the constitutional purview of the President. The President’s statutory authority regarding immigration is also crystal clear. At no point did The President exceed his constitutional and statutory authority when issuing his Travel Restriction Order. Therefore, the court’s opinion is a stunning, politically-motivated, judicial over-reach, that is in blatant violation of the Constitution.

No court has the ability to over-rule the President when he is acting within his constitutional and statutory authority. That is the entire point of giving him the authority in the first place. A president is empowered and entrusted to act, with sovereignty, within legally defined parameters. The Constitution defines those parameters, and The People, through their elected representatives in Congress, refine those parameters through legislation.

If the President exceeds his authority, Congress has the delegated power to impeach and remove him. But, so long as he obeys the law, Congress and the courts have neither constitutional nor statutory authority to interfere with the President’s exercise of his legal authority. Immigration, which, especially now, overlaps national defense, is the within the President’s “fief”, not that of the courts.

Can someone please remind me when President Trump last donned a black robe and issued legal opinions in the 9th Circuit?

I didn’t think so.

So long as the President stays in his legal pasture, he’s free to do his job as he sees fit. The laws dictate to him what he can and cannot do, not the courts. And we trust him to obey those laws, subject to the authority of the Supreme Law of the Land, until he doesn’t. That is the meaning of the Rule of Law, and respect for the Rule of law is part of the glue that binds a free society. The court should know that.

(Incidentally, that is exactly why we Conservatives insist upon having leaders who are men and women of character. If they cannot be trusted to obey the intangible, but eternal, Moral and Natural laws, how can they possibly be trusted to obey the written, but transient Constitution, which derives its authority from them?)

The Supreme Court’s “fief” is constitutional matters.

Don’t misunderstand; all the courts ought to be guided by the Constitution when ruling. But since presidential authority is derived directly from the Constitution rather than lower law, the Supreme Court can “walk the fence-line”, so to speak, to see if the President actually is trespassing. If a lower court complains that a President is out of line, and the Supreme Court sides with the lower court, that can serve as a call to action for Congress, which actually has the power to check the President through legislation or impeachment, to remedy the problem.

At least, that’s how it works in a healthy constitutional republic.

In any case, the Supreme Court has looked at this already and opined that, indeed, the President has wide latitude to act on immigration, particularly as regards national security. Section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 reinforced that fact. The 9th circuit, can complain, but that’s about all it can legally do.

So, I’m somewhat amazed that “45” complied with the stay. Why not simply ignore the unconstitutional injunction and move ahead with implementing the restriction? In fact, why not even expand the restriction to cover a few other countries, just to be as safe as possible (and to drive the point home)?

Judge Watson had no constitutional power to stop the President in this regard, and neither did the other yahoos who were allowed to block the first restriction. Surely Donald Trump, of all people, has lawyers around him who would know these things.

One other thing: like all other, lower federal courts, the 9th Circuit is a creation of Congress. The current President’s party controls Congress. If they really wanted to, the Republicans could simply make the 9th Circuit cease to be – forever.

For which the decent people of this country would thank them, actually.

Yes, the Media –  Democrat Complex would go into paroxysms of hyperbolic outrage, but when don’t they? Mr. Trump has his Twitter account – a more effective tool than any Fireside Chat, I might add, for demonstrating the media’s irrelevance – and the more the Left demonstrates its true insanity, the more support Mr. Trump gains. Perhaps, in this instance, the President should ask himself, “What would Andrew Jackson do?”

Under Construction

Under Construction. That was the place-holder I put on this page, until I could get back here to put something more interesting in. But, when I came back, I realized that “Under Construction” was a good heading for this first post, because that’s what this blog is. It is under construction, and God willing, it will be for as long as it lasts.

So, what is Pat’s Pages? (And what’s with that name?)

Continue reading