Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Killer Tomato of Border Issues.

I want to preserve (this Time Magazine article) as a benchmark of what Churchill called "the light of perverted science."

This is, I believe, a perfect example of that -- using behaviorialism to achieve modification of political outcomes is an abuse of science. And if this is perverted science, then these 29 members of the Consortium of Behavioral Scientists are science's perverts. The photos sprinkled through the story are of individuals mentioned in a sidebar to the magazine story with Time captions. The caption of the sidebar: "CHANGE AGENTS: The Obama Administration is swarming with practitioners and disciples of behavioral economics. They're already looking for ways to change the way we behave." -- Mike Vanderboegh, 24 April 2009.

Cass Sunstein, killer tomato.

It would take a long-time reader to recall my first post on Cass Sunstein back in April 2009, Obama's Change Agents: "Made more sinister . . . by the light of perverted science" as well as my follow-up, "Attack of the Killer Tomatoes." Later that year, Gun Owners of America issued an alert on Sunstein.

Just when you thought the news about the Obama administration couldn't get any worse, gun owners find themselves needing to rally the troops once again.

This time it's the proposed "Regulatory Czar" who will be coming to a vote this week in the U.S. Senate.

His name is Cass Sunstein, and he holds some of the kookiest views you will ever hear.

For starters, Sunstein believes in regulating hunting out of existence. He told a Harvard audience in 2007 that "we ought to ban hunting." And in The Rights of Animals: A Very Short Primer (2002), he said:

I think we should go further ... the law should impose further regulation on hunting, scientific experiments, entertainment, and (above all) farming to ensure against unnecessary animal suffering. It is easy to imagine a set of initiatives that would do a great deal here, and indeed European nations have moved in just this direction. There are many possibilities. (Italics are his emphasis.)

If that's all Sunstein believed, he would be dangerous and extreme, but not necessarily kooky. Unfortunately, when you look at WHY he wants to restrict hunting, this is where he goes beyond extreme.

In Sunstein's world, animals should have just as many rights as people ... and they should be able to sue humans in court!

"We could even grant animals a right to bring suit without insisting that animals are persons, or that they are not property," Sunstein said on page 11 of Animal Rights: Current Debates and New Directions (2004).

Well, that's a relief ... he is at least willing to concede that animals are not persons! But he would still have animals suing humans, apparently, with more enlightened humans representing the cuddly critters.

Imagine returning from a successful hunting trip ... only to find out that you've been subpoenaed for killing your prize. Who knows, maybe Sunstein would have the family of the dead animal serving as witnesses in court!

By the way, if you're wondering what he thinks about the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms, you won't be surprised to know that Sunstein is a huge supporter of gun control.

In Radicals in Robes: Why Extreme Right-Wing Courts are Wrong for America (2005), Sunstein says:

Almost all gun control legislation is constitutionally fine.... [O]n the Constitution's text, fundamentalists [that is, gun rights supporters] should not be so confident in their enthusiasm for invalidating gun control legislation.

Hmm, what part of "shall not be infringed" does Sunstein not understand?

You know, right after I began working on the Gunwalker Scandal, one of my old spook friends told me, "Don't ignore Cass Sunstein in this unholy clusterfuck. I hear he had some input and this kind of 'nudging' is right up his alley."

My friend was referring to this Time magazine article, How Obama Is Using the Science of Change. Sometime later, Larry Pratt of GOA mentioned the same possibility.

I must confess I never pursued that lead on Sunstein. I was a very busy boy at the time and had many other leads to pursue and I had no other solid clue beyond that.

Until, perhaps, now.

"The five faces behind the U.S. border plan."

They are five tough cookies — three Americans and two Canadians who together have spent a year thrashing out a plan that maybe, just maybe, is going to bring big changes to a border near you.

So who are the real drivers behind the Canada-U.S. Beyond The Border initiative to be unveiled Wednesday, when Prime Minister Stephen Harper meets President Barack Obama at the White House?


DAN RESTREPO: His official title is western hemispheres director at the National Security Council and as such, this close adviser to Obama owns the entire Canada file. Sad, then, that this grandson of a former Colombian ambassador to Washington is routinely described in the U.S. press as “Obama’s senior adviser on Latin America.” But that doesn’t mean Restrepo, an alumni of the Democratic-leaning Center for American Progress, comes up blank on Canada. Crucially, he has the ear of the president — and top negotiation teammates neck-deep in all questions Canada.

CASS SUNSTEIN: “The toughest of the cookies” on the American side, according to several sources familiar with his style, Sunstein is a Harvard grad and head of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs. Though he earned a reputation as a security hawk in some circles as an adviser to the U.S. Justice Department during the tumultuous aftermath of 9/11, Sunstein has more recently won the respect of U.S. industry leaders as the White House point person for streamlining “onerous” domestic regulation in search of job growth. “He’s tough and extremely thoughtful. He takes an analytical and perhaps worldly view of risk,” a senior U.S. industry source told the Star. “When it comes to the Canadian border, I would expect him not to accept at face value when someone warns about the security risks of ironing out trade barriers. He’ll demand evidence rather than accept conventional wisdom.”

PATRICIA COGSWELL: “She’s like a classic bureaucrat in reverse — she actually gets things done,” a U.S. colleague said of Cogswell, who is widely regarded as one of America’s foremost non-political experts on border screening issues. As head of the Department of Homeland Security’s Screening Coordination Office, Cogswell was integral to the introduction of biometrics as a routine part of the individual screening — all the while negotiating the ideological divides over privacy without making enemies. “Patricia would be the pleasant personality at the negotiating table,” the former colleague told the Star. “But not political or ideological — just really focused on finding common ground where others might fail. She’s the person you’d want to have looking at the nuts and bolts of how to improve borders in a time of decreasing resources.”

Well, well.

Of course this is northern border, not southern, but . . .

We know that Restrepo had great input into the Gunwalker Scandal by virtue of his position on the National Security Council as well as statements of sources within the U.S. intelligence community.

Given Sunstein rapidly anti-firearm rights position, is it such a stretch to think that this is Obama getting the band back together?


Rider said...

The MOST dangerous man in America!

TPaine said...

I started watching Glenn Beck shortly before the last presidential elections. While most of the people I talked to thought Beck was a kook, I thought he had a lot of merit on his side. So when he started warning everyone about Cass Sunstein, as "the most dangerous person of all Obama's czars", I listened!

Everything you have posted here has been common knowledge (for anyone who cared) for the past 3 years, with the exception of his inclusion as one of the border "czars".

I could almost posit that, should anyone be removed from office, Sunstein should be one of the very first to go, even ahead of Holder and Napolitano. Cass is "regulatory czar" and as such, he controls a lot more than anyone would believe.

Aiken Patriot said...

Why are we surprised at the breadth and depth of corruption in this administration? Wake up, America! We need to get these guys out of here if we are to save our country - and then we have a long way to go to rebuild it. And the problem is not limited to BO and his party. There are plenty of Repubs who need to step up or step aside. Tomorrow we will see if anhy of them have any integrity.

Anonymous said...

I believe he's thinking about you too, Mike. With only the best of intentions.

From Wikipedia-

Sunstein co-authored a 2008 paper with Adrian Vermeule, titled "Conspiracy Theories," dealing with the risks and possible government responses to false conspiracy theories resulting from "cascades" of faulty information within groups that may ultimately lead to violence. In this article they wrote, "The existence of both domestic and foreign conspiracy theories, we suggest, is no trivial matter, posing real risks to the government’s antiterrorism policies, whatever the latter may be." They go on to propose that, "the best response consists in cognitive infiltration of extremist groups",[23] where they suggest, among other tactics, "Government agents (and their allies) might enter chat rooms, online social networks, or even real-space groups and attempt to undermine percolating conspiracy theories by raising doubts about their factual premises, causal logic or implications for political action."[23] They refer, several times, to groups that promote the view that the US Government was responsible or complicit in the September 11 attacks as "extremist groups."

Sunstein and Vermeule also analyze the practice of recruiting "nongovernmental officials"; they suggest that "government can supply these independent experts with information and perhaps prod them into action from behind the scenes," further warning that "too close a connection will be self-defeating if it is exposed."[23] Sunstein and Vermeule argue that the practice of enlisting non-government officials, "might ensure that credible independent experts offer the rebuttal, rather than government officials themselves. There is a tradeoff between credibility and control, however. The price of credibility is that government cannot be seen to control the independent experts." This position has been criticized by some commentators,[24][25] who argue that it would violate prohibitions on government propaganda aimed at domestic citizens.[26] Sunstein and Vermeule's proposed infiltrations have also been met by sharply critical scholarly critiques.[27][28]

Anonymous said...

They are Marxists. and the band never broke up. They are now and will always play the Internationale.

They believe that you should be "liberated" from freedom, so that you can do what they say and give them what you have...

They don't really think anyone will ever do anything about them and that's why they smile and laugh so much.

kadar said...

NAU still alive and kickin?

Obamacare brought us slightly in line with our northern neighbors. Not sure what is on the southern plan.

Gunwalker to reduce our RKBA to equal that of our neighbors.

Bad Cyborg said...

The fly I see in the ointment is that some of us will not yield to their "nudges". We insist upon holding on to our "outmoded" understanding of and desire for liberty. Having nothing for which they are willing to kill or die, they are unable to conceive of ANYONE having such. These are elitists who are utterly convinced of the correctness of their conclusions and actions and are willing to go to any length to see their vision realized.

In such are the seeds of their destruction sown. In their arrogance, they dismiss those they consider the great unwashed, uneducated, unthinking hoard as not worthy of consideration. They believe their own propaganda and in so doing set up their own demise.

Unfortunately, they see no reason NOT to proceed and every reason TO proceed with their plans. Because we live in "flyover territory" they take no account of us. We are literally beneath their notice. And so when we rise up in recognition of our rights and duties before Creator God, they will be caught virtually completely off guard. When their actions ignite an insurrection such as has not been seen since 1775 they will not be expecting the size, scope, extent or FEROCITY of our response. They do not merely underestimate us, they ignore us. To the best of my knowledge, no one ever lost a conflict because their opponent underestimated them.

Anonymous said...

Not on topic but still needs to be looked at:

MI-copperhead said...

The arrogance of this group reminds me of General Hugh Percy, who said of the american colonists that he "....could march from one end of the colonies to the other gelding all the males as he went..."changed his tune after the battles of Lexington and Concord and said "....Indeed they knew too well what was proper, to do so. Whoever looks upon them as an irregular mob, will find himself very much mistaken. They have men amongst them who know very well what they are about,......" Cass and his minions may well find out the same thing.

tom said...

Animals have rights. They have the right to remain silent. They have the right to marinades, spices, wines, salt if needed, and appropriate cooking methods.

Anonymous said...

I remember the originals here. Getting body repairs done ASAP so I'm ready for the big game! Don't start without me . . .