Tuesday, September 20, 2016

How Stupid Can You get in 74 Years?

You know that scene in The Last of the Mohicans where the British are going along in their column and the Indians attack them at will, while the British feebly defend themselves belatedly and act like they just can't break ranks and fight back? I may be remembering it wrong, but the British, in my memory, seem to be bewildered by the attack and unable to cope with it, at least at the beginning of the scene. And I can't find the clip to prove things either way.

Anyhow, we seem to be that British column (in my mind) nowadays, with the Indians being Muslim terrorists from Major Nidal Hassan to whoever the latest is — Ahmad Khan Rahami, I believe.

Anyhow, as (some) Republicans say, how can we fight them unless we call them by their name, radical Islamic terrorists? Although these same Republicans alway rush to add that the country is full of fiercely loyal Muslim-American citizens. before we get too logical and do the math on it.

What you want to look for is a person's reasons to be a loyal American citizen, and, frankly, it's hard to think of many that a Muslim-American might have, being that practically all of them are foreign nationals to begin with. And no, the "propositional" line doesn't work any more, because the proposition has changed from freedom to security and opportunity to welfare, thereby attracting everybody except the kind of people who make good Americans.

That, and the fact that while Hillary and her pals deny it, most Americans and most Muslims think we're at war with Islam, one way or the other, make it minimally likely that a given Muslim immigrant will feel loyalty to a country like ours. Oh, one other reason.  A great many Muslims don't identify with any country, but instead feel loyalty to a tribe/ethnicity at best or and extended family at worst. That doesn't miraculously become patriotism when the person gets US citizenship.

And I don't know about you, but Midwest Redneck of Scotch-Irish descent that I am, they still conducted a full background check before they granted me a Top Secret clearance. I'd like to see Major Nidal Hassan's "investigation."

Ready for some Swiftean satire on the subject? Greg Cochran complies [link]:

Trust Issues

A while ago I was wondering about who you could trust to work in a modern equivalent of the Manhattan project. Thinking about it again, one problem is that people, if for example you consider the typical recent Ivy League graduate to be a human being, are bound and determined to be stupid about this question.
Imagine how we would have dealt with Japanese-Americans in 1942 if we had been informed by modern sensibilities.
Our stated and enforced policy would have been based on the notion that both Issei and Nisei were perfectly trustworthy, no more likely to aid the Empire of Japan than the Dutch in Grand Rapids
So we would have drafted them into the armed forces just like anyone else, and employed them where their skills seemed useful. We would have had them translating Japanese navy intercepts: we were short on Japanese-language translators, so why not? There would have been a bunch of them working with Hypo, down in the basement. Some would have worked in the Manhattan Project. They would have had jobs in the OSS, in the FBI. What could possibly have gone wrong?
Well, some of them were in fact disloyal: not most, but a far higher percentage than in most other ethnic groups in the US. There is nothing magical about this: it often happens. Were the Anglos that moved into Texas loyal to Mexico? Were the Sudeten Germans loyal to Czechoslovakia – was Conrad Henlein just misunderstood? Consider the Niihau incident.
If many Japanese Americans had been privy to the breaking of the Japanese fleet code – plausible, because of the large Japanese population in Hawaii and the need for people with Japanese language skills – the American Magic would have gone away. No Midway, not as we knew it. I figure that we would have lost tens of thousands more KIA in the Pacific than we did in this timeline. Also, probably hundreds of thousands of extra casualties in occupied Asia. Japan would have still have lost, though.
Detailed knowledge of the results from the Manhattan Project wouldn’t have done the Japanese any good, because they didn’t have the industrial muscle and sophistication to make anything of it.
I’m sure there wouldn’t have been any problems with Japanese Secret Service members, any more than Indira Gandhi ever had trouble with her Sikh bodyguards. Besides, in a democracy, no one is indispensable – I’m sure that Henry Wallace would have been a good President, for a gullible, superstitious pinko. While Sam Rayburn was a fine man!
The funniest part would been the many examples of people making excuses for terrorism and treason. When some young Japanese pilot talked about how he should perhaps crash his plane into the White House, his colleagues would have sedulously ignored those ravings, just as our contemporaries did with Major Nidal Hasan. At least they wouldn’t have had to constantly make excuses for his incompetence, as they did with Hasan – Japanese aren’t stupid. After the crash, the new President would have said that no one really knows what motivated the pilot, although back in those days, there really was a way of knowing what evil lay in the hearts of men.
After enough crap, one presumes that the press would have been instructed not to publish the faces of the miscreants, lest the general public get the wrong idea.
Our actual response was suboptimal: people who knew the score (J. Edgar Hoover) thought that putting the Japanese into camps was a mistake. Watching and infiltrating known pro-Nippon groups, punishing those that actually committed crimes was perfectly feasible; combined with reasonable discretion in assigning Japanese to useful but nonclassified jobs, you would have a policy that was more effective than the one we actually pursued

Locking them up (except in Hawaii !), wasn’t the best course, but it was a million times more sensible than what we would do today. Because in 1942, Americans weren’t crazy: today, they are.

The original is here:

And if that wasn't surreal enough for you, something else from the era:


Quibcag: Yes, that's the flag of the Sudeten Germans.


  1. Yeah, the only time I can think of that a British colonial army got mullered was the famous debacle at Isandwhana.

    Is this the scene from 'The Last of the Mohicans' you're referring to?

    the last of the mohicans battle


    1. Yes. Brits not as passive as I remembered it, but still somehow hesitant here and there. Great movie. Thanks.

  2. >Not an animu grill in pic

    1. Sorry. All I could find Will do better in future :)