Category Archives: US

Alt Left: The Creation of a New Race in the US – a Black/White Converged Race

It must be that males across space and time have been specifically selecting for beauty in females. The less attractive females were apparently simply selected against.

We see this trend even in modern times as the Black phenotype in the US has remarkably merged with the White phenotype, but only from the late 1800’s on. The changes in Black skulls in the US from the 1870’s on are nothing short of miraculous. Some it is probably due to diet, but most of it seems to be due to pure genetics. At the same time, a remarkable change has occurred in the White phenotype in terms of selection against archaic features and for progressive features from the 1600’s to the present day such that White people now look more like Black people than they do like their very own Colonial ancestors.

We what we are seeing is a merger of the two races. We have already had the creation of the American Negro, almost a new race among Blacks characterized by more progessive features and greater beauty, fewer archaic features, increased intelligence (apparently genetic) and heavy White minority admixture. Yet US Whites are also creating a new race as they merge together with Blacks phenotypically. It is almost as if we are heading towards the creation of a new Black-White merged and somewhat mixed race here in the Americas. Some it is due to interbreeding, but much is also due to parallel development.

What happened what that after the First Liberation, Black men were probably finally able to be more selective in Black females. They selected for lighter skin and Whiter or at least more progressive features and against more archaic features. Black females were also able to be more choosy about men. As some Black men began to accumulate money and wealth (quite a bit of which could be accumulated in Black neighborhoods among the new Black professionals) women began selecting possibly for the most moneyed, prominent or powerful men.

This type of Black men has always been lighter-skinned and more White-admixed than other Blacks. Hence these men would have more progessive and fewer archaic features. It also seems to be a truism that archaic features as associated with lower IQ’s and more progressive features are associated with higher IQ’s. This is even true across racial lines and within races themselves. Mass Black selection for more progressive and Whiter features may have led to the increased IQ among US Negroes, which can only partly be explained by genetics. There may also have been some epigenetics at work here in the US.

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Filed under Anthropology, Biology, Blacks, Genetics, History, Intelligence, Physical, Psychology, Race/Ethnicity, Regional, US, USA, Whites

Alt Left: The Second Amendment and the Vegas Shooting

Another superb Judith Mirville post below:

Judith Mirville: The Second Amendment was written in view of defending the young Republic in sparsely populated counties where you could be attacked by foreign marauders (it then included slaving marauders from Muslim North Africa as the country was still too poor to afford a real combating coastguard) without other recourse than your own fighting capacity. It was never meant to defend your individual property against the general citizenry, otherwise it would have been seen by all as tantamount to a return to feudalism, by definition.

The second amendment specified that anywhere there was sufficient official protection from foreign enemies and outlaws the individual bearing of weapons was not to be tolerated as a way of life and should be subject to about the same restrictions as in any civilized country of the Old World.

Switzerland decided about individual bearing of arms for the same reason : most of the land was mountainous wilderness where official authority was not available and was to be provided by inhabitants taking turns to patrol. Switzerland being in Europe, it could not escape defining even stricter norms of arms control for its citizens than the neighboring countries : you are entitled only to keep and bear weapons in as much as you do it as a soldier of your country, albeit on a part-time basis, and as soon as you tote one, you tote it in conformity with precise military orders.

I do favor an enlarged body of weapons-toters, so as for any wacko shooter to be sure that in case he starts his rampage his fire is most likely to be answered in kind, but anybody bearing arms according to the second amendment should do it as a voluntary US soldier, subject to military penalties as soon as he doesn’t obey the local military command as to the proper use of his military material. Any citizen should be granted the right to ask any weapon tote his voluntary soldier’s particular identity and particular reason to bear it (like acting as a voluntary vigilante in a drug lord ridden ghetto) in the same way he is entitled to ask any policeman’s uniform bearer his identity as a policeman.

I for one am thinking that America is now dividing into two : those for whom the first amendment about free speech and free expression is the only real sacred one, which includes the right to express oneself without any chance to be hit by stray bullets from frustrated control freaks ans therefore gun control, and those for whom the second amendment only is sacred, which includes your sacred rights to use your gun to suppress voices you claim as Unamerican or dissident.

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Filed under Crime, Europe, Government, History, Law, Military Doctrine, Nevada, Regional, Social Problems, Sociology, Switzerland, US, USA, West

Something Conservatives Will Never Understand: Armed Leftwing Revolutions Only Happen in Horrible Countries

I will grant that Colombia is more rightwing than the US, but at least they have a great Left. Hell, the Left down there is actually armed for Chrissake! They have guns, bombs, RPG’s full battle uniforms, you name it, and they use their weapons all the time to kill the conservative police and army, who very much deserve it.

This shows what happens when your society goes too rightwing or when your rightwing goes too rightwing. Not only do you get a monstrous, fascist, usually murderous Right, but, just as sure as night follows day, you end up with a very radical Left that in many cases arms itself against the murderous Right.

Extremes beget extremes. Do you really need to read Marx to figure that out? Hell, I bet I could explain that to a 5th grader and they would nod their head in agreement.

But show me an American conservative anywhere who agrees with that statement. Nope, according to the US Establishment, the radical Left rises out of ether for no apparent reason at all other than sheer fanatical evil to overthrow the capitalism that their ideology orders them to blindly hate.

While the USSR was still around, it was a convenient White Whale for any stirrings of the radical Left.

Why is the Left armed to the teeth down there, killing people left and right? Well, Number One is just because they are evil. Idiots, but evil idiots.

Are they taking up arms for any reason? Of course not, there is never an indigenous reason for any Left revolution. Well, what’s the cause of it? Cuba! And the USSR! The Cubans and the Russians put them up to it! Oh God, what crap this is. But this is the ideology of the entire US political establishment and the entire US media for decades now. And it is the lunatic ideology of the vast majority of the American people since 1946.

We lie like this because the truth is hard to swallow.

The Communists were not stupid. The individual CP’s in various countries generally felt that only when the capitalist conditions in the country approached a truly horrorshow of a Hell would there be reason for revolution. Otherwise they would always try to take power by peaceful means. Many a CP ruled many, many times that the country was not in a revolutionary situation and hence taking up arms was not justified. I can’t tell you how many documents I have read that said X country was not in a revolutionary situation right now so taking up arms was illegitimate.

Taking up arms was always an extreme last resort for any CP in any country. And when people did take up arms in what was seen as a non-revolutionary situation, as with the Shining Path in Peru, the vast majority of the Left lined up with the state against the Marxist rebels. Nevertheless, even in those cases there were variables. Towards the end the situation in Peru had gotten so horrific with the war and the monstrous turn of the state into a murderous charnelhouse that a number of parties around 1992 declared that the country was now in a revolutionary situation and it was acceptable to take up arms. That is why a number of other groups took up arms in 1992 at the peak of the war.

In many cases, CP’s even cruelly denied help to local CP’s on the grounds that they were not in a revolutionary situation.

Every American hates North Vietnam and Ho Chi Minh, but he was a rational man and North Vietnam was a reasonable state.

After the cancelled elections of 1954 which were ruined by the US (the UN ordered elections in the country, and the US ordered South Vietnam not to participate), the South Vietnamese Communist Party (really the Viet Cong) tried to obtain power by peaceful means. They were not armed with a single bullet. Nevertheless, with strong US support, the South Vietnamese government murdered 80,000 unarmed South Vietnamese Communist civilians between 1954-1960.

All this time, the South Vietnamese Communists were asking for permission from North Vietnam to take up arms. The North consistently refused armed support, so 80,000 Communists died. This shows you how grave most CP’s thought the decision to take up arms was. Finally in 1960, the North gave the South permission to take up arms, and the war was on. As you can see, South Vietnam started the Vietnam War by killing 80,000 unarmed civilians with the enthusiastic help of the US. The Viet Cong actually took up arms in self-defense. They simply got tired of sitting in their villages and waiting for the government to come murder them. They decided that if the state was going to try to kill them anyway, they might as well pick up a gun and defend themselves against the killers.

If you study most Communist revolutions in the 20th Century, this was the case in almost every single one of them. The decision to take up arms was only a last resort when conditions in the country deteriorated drastically and in particular when all peaceful methods of change were blocked. In the 20th Century, Communists almost always took up arms grudgingly, as a last resort and typically in self defense.

If you had a decent country, you never had to worry about an armed Left rebellion. If you had a shithole, well, a Left revolution was definitely something to worry about. The conclusion here is that every country that had an armed Left revolution in the 20th Century basically asked for it and got what they deserved. It was the fault of the leaders of every one of those countries for making conditions so horrible that the Left took up arms in the first place.

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Filed under Asia, Capitalism, Cold War, Colombia, Conservatism, Economics, Fascism, History, Journalism, Latin America, Latin American Right, Left, Marxism, Modern, Peru, Political Science, Politics, Regional, Revolution, SE Asia, South America, US, US Politics, USSR, Vietnam, Vietnam War, War

Alt Left: Max Weber Reloaded

Found on the Net.

American capitalism is a bad cocktail of Protestant unworthiness and an erotic hyperindividualism.

Genau, perfect.

More:

No, but as religion, especially Puritanical Protestantism, was the driving force, culturally, in the states (and I’m guessing the America’s tho I can’t really speak for Canada), it’s not to far off to say it was one of the primary influencers of capitalist thoughts about wealth, and the poor.

Yep. And this despite the fact that a number of the early Puritan colonies were actually socialist! The much more capitalist colonies tended to be down Virginia way.

And it’s more than just Protestantism, it is a particularly nasty type of pie in the sky when you die Protestantism with specific roots in the US. The predetermined nature of it and lack of social mobility is as bad as the Indian caste system. In fact, Calvinism is best seen as a uniquely American caste system.

Calvinism is a sect of Protestantism that glorifies work, this idea took root in the developing American culture as the persecuted Calvinists migrated to the New World. This culture is beneficial to capitalists.

Indeed.

And the brutally painful final diagnosis of America and Americans.

Yup, narcissistic Calvinist fuckheads, , that’s what they are when you strip everything away.

Ouch! That hurt. Also hit a nerve, and that makes a blow even more painful.

It’s not like religion created Capitalism, but the idea that one should work to justify their existence, that is more markedly expressed in US ideas than elsewhere, has its roots in Calvinism.

The Preterite and the Elect. Obviously the Trumps are the Elect. The 99% are pretty much the Preterite, whether they realize it or not.

Most of us are born in the footnotes and stay there until we die in the appendix. The plot just goes right on by without us as if we were not even there, but the whole time we think we are not only part of the story, worse, that we are actually not only starring in but authoring the very story itself, which is one of the primary delusions of the modern American citizen.

The show’s a fraud, but everyone is hoodwinked into thinking that not only are they isolated in that tiny spotlight of light on the stage, but worse, that we actually wrote the damned script of the play. And nobody gets it. They live this whole life with this charade and then die in arrogant ignorance.

Not only are we not in the spotlight, but we are nowhere even near the stage in first place. Perhaps we are in the theater, but if so, we are way up in the cheapest balcony seats.

Not only did not we not write the script, but worse, we don’t even know what’s really in it. We think the plot is one thing, but actually it’s another thing altogether. It’s the Great Con.

See: Weber, Max. 1913. The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism.

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Filed under American, Capitalism, Christianity, Culture, Economics, History, Politics, Regional, Religion, Republicans, Socialism, US, US Politics, USA

The US Government Always Tells Massive Lies about the Military Capabilities and Deeds of “Enemy States”

You must understand that the government always lies to us about the capabilities of the states it deems enemies.

They lied and vastly exaggerated the USSR’s military strength through much of the Cold War. They knew they were lying too. The project was led by Jews such as Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz. They deliberately exaggerated the danger posed by the Soviet military to keep Cold War panic levels high and keep US military spending high. Many people knew that they were exaggerating but the entire US media and multiple administrations winked and treated it like the Truth.

We lied about Saddam’s capabilities in order to justify a war of aggression to take him out. We lied about an upcoming genocide in the eastern Libya town of Benghazi in order to justify a war of aggression against Ghaddafi. We lied about Assad’s use of chemical weapons many times. In fact, Assad has apparently never used chemical weapons even one time in this entire war and he has certainly never used Sarin. All of the Assad chemical attacks the West has been screaming about were false flags designed by Al Qaeda, Turkey, the US (the DIA), the UK and France. The Syrian Civil War has sometimes seemed like one endless false flag. The US and its allies are using false flag attacks so often now that we are getting to the point where false flags are almost normal in war.

The war in Eastern Ukraine also saw many false flag attacks. Every atrocity committed by Ukrainian artillery was immediately blamed on the Novorussians. The M-17 passenger jet was actually shot down by a Ukrainian Air Force jet and it appears that the DIA was directly involved. That was one of many false flag attacks in that war. Every single one of them was uncritically reported by every news outlet in the West, none of which even bothered to do the slightest examination of the truth. The OECD, associated with the EU (currently occupied by the NATO military regime) send observers and the observers committed deliberate fraud in every investigation they undertook, always blaming the Novorussians and Russians in every false flag attack they looked at.

The war in Grenada was started by a deliberate lie that US medical students at a university there were under immediate threat. They were never under any threat at all. The invasion of Panama was preceded by countless fake reports of Noriega’s troops firing on US bases in Panama. Few if any of these reports were true.

The Vietnam War was started by a fake attack at the Gulf of Tonkin when North Vietnamese forces were said to have fired on a US ship. Actually the attack never even happened! They made up the whole thing.

Every time America goes to war for any reason, the buildup is preceded by a nearly unfathomable level of lying by the government and the controlled media. The American people, gullible suckers and fools that they are, fall for it every single time. Americans must be the dumbest people on Earth.

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Filed under Britain, Caribbean, Central America, Cold War, Eurasia, Europe, France, Geopolitics, Government, History, Iraq War, Journalism, Latin America, Libya, Middle East, Military Doctrine, Modern, North Africa, Panama, Regional, Russia, Turkey, Ukraine, US, USA, USSR, Vietnam War, War

Soft Rock from the 1960’s: Scott McKenzie “San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair)”

God I love this song! And I still love the hippies, too. If there’s anything we need to go back to, it’s that. It’s so painful to realize that the Flower Children of the 1960’s grew up to be a generation that voted in Donald Trump.

Or did they?

You must understand. Back in those days with Revolution in the air, maybe half the young people were part of the Movement and the other half hated it with all their guts and intensity. We never hear about them. There were as many young people for the war as against it. There were as many lining up outside ROTC buildings as there were bombing them. The campuses were full of short-haired conservatives, members of Buckley’s Young Americans for Freedom. Sometimes it played out in the streets, when rightwing construction workers and even bikers assaulted hippies. It’s true. Bikers have always been conservatives and still are to this very day. I’m sure they all voted for Trump this time around.

What we saw in the 1990’s and 200’s was history replaying itself, but this time as farce. Bush and his minions – Rumsfeld, Cheney, the neoconservative Jews around Bill Kristol and his father Irving at Commentary, John Bolton, Condoleeza Rice, Colon Powell – these were the 60’s Generation too, but they were the other side of the mirror – the 60’s young conservatives who hated the Movement types as much as anyone’s parents did.

Clinton ruled for eight years, and he was the Hippie Movement Generation or the Revolutionary 1960’s in power even though he barely inhaled. One of the reasons he was so hated is because the Culture War of the 1960’s-1970’s with a generation split between Left and Right at each others’ throats trying to – sometimes successfully – kill each other, never really ended. There was no truce or even a ceasefire. Surely there was no peace deal.

And when Bush came in, he was the other side of the coin, this time the conservatives of the 1960’s – the squares as we derisively called them – had taken back over the reigns from their lifelong enemies. They did it by stealing elections, but they got in no matter what.

The 1960’s were replayed again under Barack Obama, this time even worse, with accusations of hobnobbing around with actual revolutionaries like Bill Ayers and Bernadette Dohrn (these are still two of my heroes), former high-ranking members of the Weather Underground who lived underground for over a decade and resurfaced only to be pardoned of all charges.

Dohrn and Ayers resurfaced as Education Professors at the University of Chicago where they teach to this day. U of Chicago has a bad rap. Forget the Economics Department where the curse of neoliberalism was resurrected from the dead by Friedman and his gangsters who then went on to destroy Chile and poison the minds of generations. There’s a whole tradition of radicalism there too, especially in the social sciences and nowadays in the Education Department. Former bomb-throwing revolutionaries now tenured professors living comfortable lives in ivy-covered brick apartments? Who could have guessed?

Chicago’s a funny place. Sure you had the reactionary Tribune, but you also had Marshall Fields, a Leftist millionaire and head of a department store chain who funded huge pro-labor newspapers because they would die with ads they would never get. It’s a funny place, Left and Right all mixed in and in each other’s face, gripped at each other’s throats and choking hard, sort of like…the whole country now? N’est pas?

The reaction against the so-called Movement radicalism of Obama in power was of course the election of Trump on a fake populist platform, whose job it is apparently to roll back the entire Revolutionary Project of the 1960’s – and the New Deal of the 1930’s while they’re at it – and oh Hell, let’s go all the way back to Gilded Age of the 1890’s as Rove dreams. We’re already there anyway. What is the US from 1990-present but the Gilded Age Part 2, as if we never learned a thing the first time?

The infinite return coming back to punch us all in the face again. Cirlces aren’t all round. Some are flat in fact.

Riverrun, past Eve and Adams, from swerve of shore to bend of bay…

OK, you get it now?

 

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Filed under Conservatism, Culture, Democrats, Economics, Higher Education, History, Left, Midwest, Music, Neoconservatism, Neoliberalism, Obama, Political Science, Politics, Regional, Republicans, Revolution, Rock, US, US Politics, USA

Soft Rock from the 1960’s: The Mamas and the Papas, “California Dreamin'”

My God, what a beautiful song that was. I even loved Mama Cass. I don’t care if she was fat. And John Phillips and his lovely teenage daughter! This was actually a family and a band.

1968. It was a different time back then. I was only 11, so I missed it, but I experienced the Hippie Movement just fine in the 1970’s from 1974-on. The Hippie Movement was still going strong all through the 1970’s, believe it or not, and it was not a whole lot different from the Movement in the 1960’s. Some of my acid dealer friends used to get their LSD directly form Timothy Leary’s Brotherhood of Eternal Love in Laguna Beach. This organization was headquartered in Laguna Canyon where they had rented a number of homes. They even lookouts up in the trees! Over the years, they manufactured and sold millions of hits of LSD. They were the makers of the original Orange Sunshine LSD.

I wasn’t all for peace and love though. I was actually on the mailing list for the Weather Underground!

I even have a soft spot for the Black Liberation Army, even though they were little more than criminals turned revolutionaries.

But hey, so were the Panthers.

Don’t believe me? Read Soul on Ice, and get back to me on that.

Or look up the Jackson Brothers and Angela Davis in Wikipedia. I always thought Angela Davis smuggled that gun in to the courtroom that day. Somehow the Jacksons got a hold of firearms and opened fire in a Bay Area courtroom one day in 1970. No one ever figured out how the guns got into the courtroom, but my mother always thought that Angela Davis smuggled them in in her Afro! Davis was a radical lawyer representing George Jackson and his brother, and she was there in the courthouse circus that day. A wild shootout took place in the courtroom, the judge was shot and killed (!), and both of the Jacksons were shot dead outside the courtroom by police.

Those were the days, man!

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Filed under California, Crime, Dope, Hallucinogens, History, Intoxicants, Law enforcement, Left, LSD, Music, Regional, Revolution, Rock, US, USA, West

The Little-Known Story of Joanne Chesimard and the Black Liberation Army

The story of the Black Liberation Army, a radical armed Black revolutionary Marxist movement in the 1960’s-1970’s,  is little known. Although at first they were little more than thugs turned revolutionaries, they carried out some spectacular actions and seemed to always be one step ahead of the cops. You know that’s got to count for something. I believe in giving respect where it is deserved.

I always had a soft spot for the Black Liberation Army.

One of the leaders of the BLA was Joanne Chesimard, aka Assatu Shakur is fairly well known because of lying propaganda that she shot and killed a cop and subsequently is near the top of the US Most Wanted List. The truth is she is 100% innocent of that charge. She is probably guilty of some other things and she is certainly guilty of a spectactual prison break, but she is innocent of shooting that cop.

In fact, she was shot and badly wounded in the incident where the police officer was killed. She and four other BLA members were pulled over by the police in New Jersey and a wild shootout ensued. I believe the police officer was killed with his own gun. The man who killed the cop was also shot dead. Joanne was badly wounded, but she never fired a weapon during the whole shootout. In fact, I believe she was not even armed. Nevertheless, she has been charged with the officer’s murder though she had nothing to do with it. She was given political asylum by revolutionary Cuba. One of the US’ stupid and arrogant demands of the Cubans is that they give up Assata. Raul Castro said they never will. They should not. She’s innocent anyway.

Chesimard and other BLA members were very good, always escaping from close calls with the cops and even escaping from police custody a few times. Chesimard and some others escaped from a federal prison in Florida in 1979 disguised as laundry workers. Fellow BLA members disguised as laundry workers and drove a laundry truck in and broke the BLA out of a maximum security prison! There was a vast manhunt on for Chesimard all over the US, but she could never be found. There were a lot of people hiding her and they were very good at it. Suddenly, three years later, she popped up in Cuba and said she had been given asylum. No one knew how she got there, and no one has ever figured out where she was for three years.

This is one reason I can never get into any serious anti-Black racism. John Brown is one of my ultimate heroes! I don’t care how many people he killed. So what! A revolution is not a picnic! I liked the Black Panthers a lot too, and I still like them to this very day. I rather like the idea of armed Black revolutionaries running around waging a revolutionary war against the system. Good for them! And the Black Panthers’ armed self-defense was also a good thing. I loved Huey Newton and love Elaine Brown. I even have a soft spot for Stokely Carmichael and even Eldridge Cleaver. How can I be an anti-Black racist? What crap!

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Filed under Blacks, Caribbean, Corrections, Crime, Cuba, Florida, History, Latin America, Law enforcement, Left, Marxism, Race/Ethnicity, Racism, Regional, Revolution, South, US, USA

Alt Left Criticism: “Lindsay Has Moved Far to the Left”

In a radio interview on Robert Stark’s show with Rabbit, Pilleater and Ryan England, England remarked in a baffled tone that I had seemed to have moved far to the Left. This wasn’t really a true statement, as there really wasn’t anywhere to the Left remaining for me to move to. I would have fallen off the cliff if I did. I have always been Hard Left. I am a former member of the Communist Party USA. I used to contribute to the Weapons Funds of Latin American armed revolutionary movements like the FMLN in El Salvador. At one point, I was talking to a representative of the ELN armed group in Colombia, and I was thinking about translating some of their articles for them. I chickened when I worried that I could maybe get 10 years in prison for such harmless activity.

From 1988-1990, I was even on the mailing list for the Weather Underground! I received regular mailings from them.

That was the Weathermen, an underground guerrilla movement that took up arms in the 1960’s to fight the US government. They set off many bombs all over that country. During the period of radical activism from the 1960’s to the 1970’s, a total of 50,000 bombs were set off! I believe in 1970 alone, there were 3,000 bombs set off all around the country. And very few people were hurt or even killed, as they often set them off in the middle of the night and often telephoned in warning calls first so the area could be evacuated.

There was a very large community helping those people – I would estimate 200,000 people at the very low end. The FBI had a very hard time infiltrating the Weathermen because the community was so dedicated to them. People hid them, supported them, moved them around, gave them tips, and funded them with lots of money. A lot of rich people supported them too, especially at the universities and in the legal community. There was a whole group of lawyers who were more or less actively helping them. That was one of the reasons it was so hard to break the movement – you would have had to arrest tens or hundreds of thousands of people.

I used to subscribe to their above-ground publication called Breakthrough. It was put out by something called the John Brown Book Club, headquartered in either Berkeley or San Francisco as of ~1990. The above ground component was legal, and the underground component was illegal.

The Weathermen only killed one person accidentally in their many years of armed action. That was a chemistry student who was up all night working on something in the lab when they bombed at ROTC Headquarters at the University of Wisconsin. Some cops were killed in a bomb attack in Berkeley at Police Headquarters, but I do not think the Weathermen did that. The Weathermen were not the only maniacs running around setting off bombs back then. There were all sorts of groups doing that.

Unfortunately the Weathermen got in with the radical Blacks of the Black Liberation Army and some others and in 1980, they held up an armed car and killed one of the drivers. They got a lot of money, but I did not approve of that action. A couple of them were caught. Afterwards there were raids on Weathermen hideouts all over the US. The FBI mostly found nothing. I remember in one raid in New York City, the Weathermen had left so quickly that burners were left on on the stove. Obviously they had sympathizers inside the government and even law enforcement who were tipping them off to the raids. They why they usually were already gone before they got raided.

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Filed under California, Central America, Colombia, El Salvador, Government, History, Homegrown Terrorism, Latin America, Law enforcement, Left, Maoism, Marxism, Regional, Revolution, South America, US, USA, West

“Fishing on the Big Black,” by Alpha Unit

The Big Black River, flowing southwest across Mississippi, is the site of a pivotal battle during the Vicksburg Campaign of the Civil War. After a decisive loss at Champion Hill, the Confederates reached the Big Black River on the night of May 16, 1863, under the command of Lt. Gen. John Pemberton, commander of the Confederate Army of Mississippi.

The Confederates constructed earthworks on the river’s east bank and placed 18 guns behind the works. Large sections of Pemberton’s line were protected by a bayou of waist-deep water. A planked-over railroad bridge and another makeshift bridge provided access to additional artillery overlooking the river on its west bank.

Union forces led by Maj. Gen. John McClernand encountered the Confederates early on the morning of May 17. It just so happened that the men led by Brig. Gen. Michael Lawler actually got to the Rebels first, wading through the bayou to overrun the Confederates on the east bank of the river. Inspired by Lawler’s attack, other Union formations surged forward.

Overwhelmed, the Confederates broke for the makeshift bridges to get to the west bank. Most of Pemberton’s men made it across, but Pemberton’s chief engineer set fire to both bridges to cut off any Union pursuit. Many of the Confederates tried to swim across the river and drowned. About 1,700 Rebels were stranded on the east bank and subsequently captured. It was the final battle before the Siege of Vicksburg.

After floods you can still sometimes find artifacts from the gunboat battles that took place on the Big Black River during the War. But most people on the river nowadays aren’t really interested in Civil War artifacts. The big payoff during springtime on the Big Black are flathead catfish – also called tabby cats, shovelhead cats, yellow cats, flatties, and who knows how many other names. The Big Black River will overflow her banks that time of year. As Cliff Covington tells it:

Foraging catfish move into the flooded timber in large numbers. Catfish anglers take advantage of this feeding frenzy by setting multiple trotlines in likely spots along the main channel. Chicken livers, cut skipjack, live goldfish, and pond perch are the baits of choice when a boatload of catfish is the big objective.

Muddy and slow-flowing due to the large amount of sediment it carries, the Big Black River is renowned for yielding blue, channel, and flathead catfish of what Covington calls “mythical proportions.” It is one of the premier handgrabbing destinations in the South. A handgrabber catches fish by placing his hands directly into a catfish hole, and some anglers are very good at it. Covington refers to Woodie Reaves, who says there is no better place for handgrabbing catfish than the shallow waters of the Big Black.

While Reaves’ personal best is a 93-pound whale of a catfish that he wrestled from its underwater bed just a few years ago, his group routinely lands up to 25 big cats, averaging 50 pounds each, every time they venture out on this stream.

Sportsmen say that the Big Black River is also a good place for bowfishing. Bowfishers use highly specialized bows to catch fish, usually on a boat set up just for bowfishing. Hunting fish using a bow and arrow isn’t new at all and is a traditional way of fishing all over the world. Bert Turcotte of Vicksburg has been an avid bowfisher since high school and says that anyone with a regular bow can also fish this way. As he told Phillip Gentry:

All kinds of bows can be used for bowfishing. People who like traditional archery can easily equip a recurve bow for fishing. Any compound bow can also easily be set up, but the range of draw weight is the key. Forty pounds of draw weight or less will get the job done here in Mississippi.

Unlike hunting bows, fishing bows come with reels for retrieving your prey.

In Mississippi you can legally catch carp, buffalo, gar, shad, bowfin, and catfish with a bow. There are restrictions, however, on when and where you can catch catfish in this way.

Gentry says that nearly all bowfishing is done at night when carp, buffalo, and gar can be found hiding in extremely shallow water. Buffalo and carp feed on aquatic vegetation and are especially fond of newly planted areas that have recently flooded from spring rain. Gar are the most commonly sought daytime species, he says, and can be found “sunning” in shallow water or lurking near the surface in deeper water.

Sean Ford of Madison, Mississippi, uses a gas generator on his bowfishing boat to power either sodium or halogen lights for night fishing. He says:

The platform will allow two of us to fish at the same time from the front as we ease along in shallow water with the trolling motor, looking for fish to shoot.

An angler will use a trolling motor on his boat in order to move quietly through the water. You don’t want to spook the fish.

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