Tuesday, June 30, 2020


Who is in control? Given events of the past few weeks and months, that’s hard to say. Another question would be: Is anyone in control? In his dystopian novel 1984, British author George Orwell created the character “O’Brien” a powerful member of the Inner Party who tells Winston Smith: "Who controls the past controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.”

Some literary analysts claim Orwell was depicting the Nazi Party in 1984, while others claim it was the Communist Party. All agree that Orwell was portraying a totalitarian party in complete control of past, present and future for poor Winston Smith, an ordinary guy trying to figure out answers to the questions with which I opened this column.

Journalist Tucker Carlson openly claims Democrats are in control of recent events in the streets of our cities. Other conservative journalists contend Democrats support Antifa, Black Lives Matter, and the hordes of anarchists who turn peaceful demonstrations into riots, and who tear down historical monuments across our country — the latter a dramatic, visible effort to control the past. We see it on our TV screens every night.

Last Saturday, Maine’s own Graham Lloyd, 37, was one of four charged with pulling down the statue of President Andrew Jackson in front of the White House. As of this writing I was unable to find where in Maine Graham lived or any other information about possible criminal or political activities in which he may have been involved locally.

Hannah-Jones with Henry Louis Gates
As a former US History teacher in Maine, I was surprised at the New York Times Magazine publication of the 1619 Project — an alternative US History curriculum contending the United States was founded not in 1776 when the Declaration of Independence was adopted, but in 1619 when the first African slave was brought to Virginia. I was also dismayed to learn that it was being adopted by public schools across the country.

The 1619 Project -- another effort to control the past -- is a creation of New York Times writer Nikole Hannah-Jones for which she was given a Pulitzer Prize. That’s curious given the dubious, racist, historical claims she’s made in the past. In a letter to the University of Notre Dame’s campus newspaper The Observer, she declared: “the white race is the biggest murderer, rapist, pillager, and thief of the modern world.” She called whites “bloodsuckers” and “barbaric devils,” and accused them of “pumping drugs and guns into the black community.”

Hannah-Jones also claimed that: “Africans had been to the Americas long before Columbus or any Europeans… [and] had the decency and respect for human life to learn from the Native Americans and trade technology with them…” She cited Aztec and Olmec pyramids as proof although historical evidence of these claims can be described as thin or none. Nonetheless, the New York Times and the Pulitzer Prize Committee consider her a respected historian.

One of the men beaten by Black Lives Matter
As a Roman Catholic, I’m further appalled that Black Lives Matter and Antifa are assaulting fellow Catholics and their statuary. When Catholics gathered over the weekend to say the rosary around the now-defaced statue of St. Louis — the saint after whom the city was named — the leftist mob beat at least three of them. I watched a horrifying video of three black men chasing down and beating a white Christian man following the rosary service but I’ll bet none of you readers ever saw it on CNN, NBC, CBS, ABC, or anywhere else. It doesn’t fit the “white privilege/systemic racism” narrative of our mainstream media.

Elsewhere in St. Louis, the leftist mob broke down a gate leading to a private home. In a video taken by Black Lives Matter protestors, a barefoot man was pointing what looked like an AR-15 at the mob. His barefoot wife stood beside him aiming a pistol. Both were warning the mob to leave. Thankfully it did before shots were fired. It was very tense and we can assume scenes like this are playing out elsewhere.

The Washington Post ran an article declaring: “St. Louis couple points guns at peaceful crowd of protestors calling for mayor to resign.” The homeowner, an attorney named Mark McCloskey, was interviewed by a local TV station and described the scene quite differently. He said the Black Lives Matter mob broke down a steel gate guarding the private drive leading to his house, threatened to kill him, his wife, their dog, and burn down their house. At least one had a semi-automatic pistol. He said the mayor didn’t live there.

Clearly this leftist-sanctioned violence occurring almost everywhere has reached a critical stage. Is it out of control already? One could make a serious case that it is. If so, can control be regained? By whom? Answers to these questions, or lack thereof, are likely to determine the outcome of the November elections.


Brian said...

It's in the eye of the beholder. I'm sure many claimed at the time that the Boston Tea Party was a group of angry, rioting destructive thugs. Others see it as a necessary rebellion/uprising. Same for the Stono Rebellion of 1739,the New York City Conspiracy of 1774, Gabriel’s Conspiracy in 1801, Nat Turner’s Rebellion in 1831, and the uprising that forced the Civil Rights Act in the 1960s. Unfortunately leftist opposition within Germany during Hitler's rise to power proved ineffectual, as the Security Police (Sipo) crushed the leftist political organizations by force. It seems many would like to see the current day protests crushed by force as well.

Anonymous said...


Uber_Fritz said...

Brian . . . and just how would you characterize this? This is not isolated but is pervasive throughout the US.

Brian said...

Uber, what exactly is "this"? The rebellion/uprising? Or the violence that has nothing to do with the cause? I'm not saying some of the violence/destruction isn't being done in the name of the cause, but not nearly all of it.

Montedoro44 said...

I just stumbled on a recent edition of Candace Owens' show, where she and Marc Lamont Hill go at it. It's 1:20, so it takes some patience, but it is good to see opposing sides politely, if sometimes excitedly, expressing themselves. And as they are both black, the horse-apple rhetorical dismissal of white guilt/fragility/privilege/racism/X/Y/Z cannot be invoked.

IMO this chat is well worth the time, as 1) they are both outspoken & practiced opinionators, and 2) as there are many facts presented (mostly by Candace, surprise) and chewed over. The question of violence as a tactic is one of many that they process.

Re [slight rephrasing]: "not nearly all of the violence/destruction is being done in the name of the cause": that's identical to "some of the violence is being done in the name of the cause". And that evokes the old joke whose punchline goes like "I already know what you are — now we're just haggling over the price." (Searchable, if you need it.) In short, BLM advocates/supports/allows/tolerates — choose any of these — violence. Whatever justification is given for it, one known effect is that the violence tends to grow, especially when it is not opposed, its purveyors tend to go beyond whatever BLM or the violence-mongering group du jour claims as their limit of toleration. In the current case — violence in the name of racial justice — the hardest-hit victims tend to be the people whom BLM claims to be defending. The excitement may magnetic for the moment, but in the long run, it hurts. You can see Marc Lamont Hill try to justify it — up against a less-informed, less assertive opponent, he might have got away with it.

Brian said...

Yes, I left it open that some of the destruction is being done in the name of the cause because I view toppling statues that honor racists in public spaces to be in the name of the cause. This I believe BLM advocates/supports/allows/tolerates, but I'm not 100% sure that is the case. I do not believe that BLM at all condones any other destruction and certainly not violence. Trump demonizing the movement as a "symbol of hate" is just another sign of his racism. It is no surprise that years of his continuous race-baiting, combined with the on-going murders by police has erupted into these protests. The protestors/rioters certainly have as much cause for an angry rebellion as did colonists upset with taxes.

And again, there has been way more death and destruction in the name of far right causes than there has been for BLM and ANTIFA combined.

As far Candace Owens goes, she is getting the attention she wants now by realizing that being a pretty black face for conservatives would really pay off, and she could make a name for herself better doing that than by trashing Trump and the Tea Party like she was doing a few years ago. How can we take her seriously after she stupidly claimed on Fox News that the National Rifle Association was founded as a civil rights organization that protected Black people from the KKK? And who about the mail bombs sent to Democrats said, "there is a 0% chance that these ‘suspicious packages’ were sent out by conservatives." and called them "fake bomb threats". She's turned herself into a joke; defending the racist Amy Cooper? C'mon.

Montedoro44 said...

To demean Candace Owens as a "pretty black face" can be parsed as an act of unashamed sexism, if not racism. What amount of disdain and hatred that maligner must have to say such a thing about an articulate person who stands up to the mob — and especially in these walk-on-eggshells times — a black person?

Candace Owens is also a person who believes in, and wants others to believe in the American legal foundation of innocent until proven guilty. That would be the underlying principle that she employed when she gave the destroyers of Amy Cooper a reminder to not rush to judgment — in her words, to not assume racism. Anyone who bypasses this principle does not operate mentally as an American. If she made a mistake, at least she erred on the side of generosity.

Whoever jettisons the entire output of a person based on a presentation of a few targeted statements is not functioning ethically, or has an agenda; the act of doing so constitutes an elementary rhetorical fallacy that goes by several names, like false generalization, confirmation bias, cherry picking, etc. If that is the test, then everyone fails. The Cooper v. Cooper case has enough complexity to suggest that both of the Coopers have some complicity in that freakish event. Had a white Republican Christian Cooper initiated the transaction with a black Democrat Amy Cooper and it ran its course as it did, what's the likelihood that the Twitter inquisitors would have sympathized with this Christian Cooper?

My hope is that the two Coopers will reach a rapprochement and so show the hate-spewing Twittermongers and the world a needed example of tolerance and forgiveness. But the Twitter wolves don't want that, do they? They would lose their poster child and so harm their agenda. Never let a good crisis go to waste.

Brian said...

Oh stop the act, you know damn well that the "pretty black face" was written as a comment on how she would be viewed by Fox viewers. Are you really that desperate?

And with Amy Cooper.....Really? We all saw her reaction and her horrendously racist bogus BS about an "African-American man threatening my life, and my dog" as she mistreats her dog. Three times stressing the "African-American" part. Give it up, Monte, everybody knows that is racist behavior. How can I trust anything you claim to believe when you try to pretend the racism there is not obvious? I have doubted that you were a racist yourself, but wow, if you really can't "assume" that what you saw was blatant racism....

And he was complicit? I guess you saw something I didn't, can you give me a link to something showing how he was partially at fault in causing her hysterical and racist behavior(besides having black skin)?

Tolerance? No, that behavior is not to be tolerated at all. The whole BLM movement is due to people not wanting to "tolerate" such racist crap. Don't let a good crisis go to waste? Sounds to me like you wish Floyd's "crisis" of being murdered went to waste, that it just all blew over smoothly in a sea of tolerance.

Oh, and I missed your excuse for Owens presuming with 100% certainty that the Democrats were guilty of staging those bomb threats in the mail. After all, you did stress the "innocent until proven guilty" portion of your post. Maybe you can enlighten me on how my holding her accountable for that is an "elementary rhetorical fallacy" or some such hogwash.

I can only laugh when you bring up "hate-spewing Twittermongers". Because we all know who is the king of hateful tweets.

Montedoro44 said...

Out of respect for Tom's blog, I won't feed you anymore, Brian. Don't think this hasn't been fun.

Brian said...

I'd give up as well at this point if I were in your position.

MsL said...

A history teacher like Mr. McClaughlin might find this disturbing.

Kafir said...

I’m guessing if Brian is an NFL fan, he’ll be singing the “Black National Anthem” during the first week of games this season.

I am curious if Brian or the BLM Marxists know that actual slavery still exists in many countries, particularly in the Islamic Republic of Mauritania.

Brian said...

I don't know the "Black National Anthem" but its cute that you are thinking of me.

Yes I know about modern slavery. One of the biggest offenders is led by Trump's boyfriend Kim Jong Un. Trump: "And then we fell in love, OK? No, really, he wrote me beautiful letters, and they’re great letters. We fell in love.” Maybe the slavery thing is one of the things Trump loves about him. I have no idea why you are asking about modern day slavery though.

Brian said...

Oh, and just imagine the hysteria and enraged outcry from Fox viewers if the "falling in love" thing was said by Obama about one of our biggest enemies, say some terrorist Muslim!

I wonder if Putin, the dominatrix of this weird ménage à trois of two dictators and a wanna-be, got jealous over that.


Montedoro44 said...

Regarding the subject of Tom's article, who's in control, here is a glimpse into a group that wants to gain control; article "Islamists Appropriate Black Lives Matter Movement, Despite History of Anti-Black Bigotry":


Brian said...

Nice that muslims are showing solidarity with this civil rights movement.

It's great seeing what is going on during this Independence Day. Good to see such patriotism all over the country! On July 9, 1776, a rowdy group of American colonists banded together at a political rally in New York City and marched to a public park that featured a statue of King George III, Britain's ruler, and knocked the 4,000-pound statue off its 15-foot pedestal. The head of the statue was then decapitated and perched on top of a spike. Sound familiar?

"They're patriots," says historian Erika Doss, an American studies professor at the University of Notre Dame, of today's protesters. "They're looking at the symbols and these visual and martial emblems and icons in their midst and they're saying this doesn't stand for who we are today."

"The people who are out yelling in the streets today are no different than Paul Revere yelling 'The British are coming!''' says Melanye Price, a Texas professor. "It's the American way to voice criticism of the government and to rebel against oppressive forces."

The widespread use of masks is also a patriotic sign. Americans looking out for each other, showing they care about their fellow citizens by putting up with inconveniences like their glasses fogging over. Te percentage of unselfish patriots are see are very encouraging.

Will the horrifically un-patriotic president come up with a modern day version of "bone spurs" to once again wimp-out and thus avoid being humiliated as a huge loser? My friends are worried he will, but I try and reassure them that his massive ego combined with his delusion will not allow this to happen.

TRD said...


Montedoro44 said...

There's an informative video from June 30 — Dinesh D'Souza is interviewed by Jan Jekielek; in its inadvertent way, it addresses the topic of Tom's blog. As there are massive complexities hidden in the question of who is in control of the current political activities that are visible in the streets, the conversation may appear to wander a bit, but it is all connected. 46 interesting minutes:


Brian said...

Who is in control of what is going on in the streets? It can't get much simpler. I don't need to watch a lengthy, wandering video to know the answer. The obvious answer of who is in control is...the PEOPLE. The patriotic citizens of the USA. Sure, BLM people may help organize some of the protests, but the people that come and protest are concerned citizens trying to help. No political agency is telling them what to do, they see what is going on and have taken to the streets.

Montedoro44 said...

There is data now that perhaps 2000 more-than-usual black-on-black homicides have occurred, and the expectation that this will get even worse, as police are increasingly demeaned, endangered, and defunded.