Sunday, February 12, 2017

KAKISTOCRACY

kak·is·toc·ra·cies. Government by the least qualified or most unprincipled citizens. Origin of kakistocracy. Greek kakistos, worst, superlative of kakos, bad; see caco– + –cracy.

This is a new word for me, to be added to other -cracies such as the diametric meritocracy, and unacceptable -cracies such as plutocracy and theocracy.  Most troubling about the current US kakistocracy is its fundamental practice of passing off lies as alternative facts.  Indeed, such alternative facts can lead to completely misguided policies that unfortunately resonate with a certain portion of the population.  The list of such prevarications is too long to even summarize here, and grows daily.  However, I would like to examine the executive order on banning certain immigrants.

The President's pretense for the EO is to "make America safe."  Although I realize that many Trump supporters are immune to facts, let's just have a look at some data.  First, let's review the number of terrorist killings in the US since the 9/11 attacks - in the fifteen years after 9/11, jihadists have killed 94 people inside the United States, right wing extremists have killed 50 and left wing extremists, 5. 

Next, here are data that summarize the foreign born terrorists by country of origin, total number of terrorists and total number of deaths from 1975 to 2015.  Note that to date, in 2017, not a single Syrian has killed anyone in the US via a terrorist attack.  The nations on the President's banned list have produced zero terrorist killings in the last decade or so.  Even Obama critic-in-chief Charles Krauthammer believes that the EO immigration ban is "stupid." 

Terrorists
Murders
Saudi Arabia
19
2,369
United Arab Emirates
2
314
Egypt
11
162
Lebanon
4
159
Kuwait
2
6
Cuba
11
3
Kyrgyzstan
2
3
Pakistan
14
3
Palestine
5
2
Armenia
6
1
Croatia
9
1
Taiwan
1
1
Trinidad and Tobago
2
1
Afghanistan
3
0
Algeria
4
0
Australia
1
0
Bangladesh
2
0
Bosnia
1
0
Dominican Republic
1
0
Ethiopia
1
0
France
1
0
Ghana
1
0
Guyana
2
0
Haiti
3
0
India
2
0
Iran
6
0
Iraq
2
0
Japan
1
0
Jordan
4
0
Kazakhstan
1
0
Kosovo
2
0
Libya
0
0
Macedonia
3
0
Mexico
1
0
Morocco
3
0
Nigeria
1
0
Serbia
2
0
Somalia
2
0
South Korea
1
0
Sudan
6
0
Syria
0
0
Turkey
1
0
United Kingdom
3
0
Uzbekistan
3
0
Vietnam
1
0
Yemen
1
0

And if it's the safety of Americans that is a Presidential priority, here are some interesting data of one's probability of succumbing to a terrorist attack versus other ways of buying the farm:


BI Graphics_Odds of Dying

And here are the actual US mortality numbers for 2014: 

https://www.cdc.gov/injury/images/lc-charts/leading_causes_of_death_age_group_2014_1050w760h.gif

So, given the data, what would a rational proposal to "keep Americans safe" look like? Since suicide is the 10th leading cause of American deaths, and homicides are right up there as well, it would seem worthwhile to implement policies that would lower such deaths.  This of course would require a serious discussion about controlling the possession of guns, and we all know that that won't happen in the near future.  Indeed, this administration wants to, among other things, loosen any requirements for gun purchases by the mentally ill, and lower the restrictions on silencers and imported weapons.  That should really help solidify these data!!!

 http://ichef-1.bbci.co.uk/news/624/cpsprodpb/15BEB/production/_85876098_us_gun_terrorism_624_v4.png

8 comments:

Bizzy Brain said...

Your post puts things in perspective. The nation that is the number one problem for us is Mexico. Most Mexicans think we suck.

Douglas E said...

Thanks Bizzy - we usually try to be rational around here! :-)

Front Ranger said...

And we have not yet considered the opioid epidemic.....

Douglas E said...

Front Ranger - I have been thinking of a post about this, so maybe now I will get around to it!

BES said...

Kakistocracy? Maybe. Maybe not.

In our effort to be rational here, I think we can all agree that American policy is more often than not a hodgepodge of foreign and domestic initiatives trying to do the right thing for the wrong reasons. This policy is one of them.

But what this discussion fails to point out is that we are in fact either at war or engaged in hostilities in each of those seven nations covered by the EO. If you care to read the State Department travel advisories, you’ll understand that your life is at risk in these countries. There are laws, believe it or not, against allowing combatants or potential combatants in these countries into the United States. The president has every right to prohibit their entry into the US. From my point of view, statistical tabulations of killings by terrorists from these countries are irrelevant, and that will become evident in a minute. For now, consider the hypocrisy of not being able to enter these countries (as if you had any desire whatsoever), yet marching the streets and demonstrating against America's refusal to admit these same nationals into our country.

But come on, where is the discussion about Cuba? North Korea? Vietnam, where not long ago we only began normalized relations? Our policy towards Cuba and NK is no different than the Lucky Seven. Where is the outcry? You can’t say it’s okay to box out one country for the same reason you’re objecting to boxing out another. It simply doesn’t play. And Mexico?? They should be at the top of the list for a drug trade that is far worse than terrorism.

As I mentioned the right thing for the wrong reasons, I would like to see a more uniform and universal application of immigration policy. One that doesn’t speak to ethnicity, race or geography. One that does what immigration policy was always supposed to do - when it is fairly and consistently applied.

I use this analogy where a thief breaks into your home, steals all your money and valuables. Fortunately, the thief is caught, apprehended, charged, and sentenced. Your valuables and money are returned. In the other scenario, a thief breaks in your country, steals money, benefits and protections reserved for American citizens. But that thief is not only excused, more thieves are encouraged to join! This is orchestrated hypocrisy. Yes, we are a compassionate nation full of humanitarian good will. But we are not stupid. Selective enforcement, on the other hand, is the kakistocracy.

A very dear young woman from Peru immigrated to the US in a 100% legal manner. She is now a proud US citizen and from what I’ve learned, it takes a whole lot more to become a US citizen than it does to be born one. I applaud and respect her fortitude, for she has a full appreciation of the value of her citizenship. She has a job, pays taxes and loves her country. She even voted for Trump. What is going on with our refusal to address illegal immigration is an absolute affront to her and the multitude of other immigrants who did it the hard way.

I’m sorry. I can’t get with the belief that non-US citizens have a right to immigrate here. They have no such rights Constitutionally, morally or ethically. I also cannot accept the assertion that I must financially subsidize their entry into the US. (Weren't our great grandparents indentured into servitude to pay for their passage?). Yes, it is a privilege that must be earned. The exact same way Yolanda and my great grandparents did.

BES said...

Hard Data To Follow:

As reported in the March 1 2017 issue of the Venice Gondolier, according to the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office, "460 people from 17 nations who entered the country illegally and committed a crime were removed from Sarasota County by ICE, according to Sheriff's Office records." Fact of the matter is, we've got enough ugly crime to deal with here that we don't need to import it.

Sarasota county has a population of about 405,500 as of the 2015 census, so you can extrapolate the bigger number of criminal acts perpetrated by illegal aliens/per 100,000 to some degree over the 300+ million citizens in cities all across America.

I'm certainly grateful for all the law-abiding, productive, patriotic, tax-paying immigrants who have come to our country legally, but I still do not understand why it is discriminatory or racist to weed out those who infiltrate our borders, take advantage of our good will, commit crimes and leave us to clean up the mess. Please, think about this a bit more deliberately. Do you honestly believe it is our best interest to accept anyone and everyone unconditionally into our country? Sanctuary cities? Really?

Conversely, there are nearly 200 nations in the world. Put them all on a wheel. Spin the wheel, pack your bags and go there. My guess is that nearly any country you arrive in, you will not be warmly welcomed (maybe your wallet will), nor will you get gainful employment. You may even get killed.

My question is why are we so damn eager to welcome all of them here without some understanding of what they stand for and where there loyalty is?

Douglas E said...

BES - everything you say is true and I would agree with nearly all you say. But the main point that I was trying to make was about the EO on travel restrictions making no logical sense. The is absolutely no doubt that immigration policies need reform, that the current laws need to be enforced. To say that things are complicated would be quite an understatement; 11 million illegals, most of whom are positive contributors, lots of bad apples, and so on. However, you will likely note that at the current moment, most of the domestic terrorism is not being carried out by Muslims or Mexicans but by white folks killing "Iranians", threats against synagogues and mosques, desecration of Jewish burial sites, etc. So - we are all moving down to your place, drink margaritas and watch the sun go down on the Gulf :-)

BES said...

Of course it's really hard to argue with the numbers. We've all got a better chance of hitting Powerball than getting capped by a terrorist. But the point I am trying to make about the EO is the principal of reciprocity and really has nothing to do with body counts. Please watch this 3 minute video:

https://youtu.be/RMeMbGQTaMs

I've spoken with many in the SF community who share these sentiments. This just happens to be an operator who went on the record and almost lost his job for it.

The lack of reciprocity, in my view, says that you can come over to my house any time for any reason, but I am not welcome in your house, at all, period. As a Christian, I suppose I'm obliged to overlook that disparity. But as a pragmatist, i'm not stupid. I remain openly cynical towards anyone who openly despises my existence. Especially where there is a proclivity towards violence, as is the case with the Koran, drug trade and rogue nations.

Yes, things are most certainly complicated and most complicated by the fact that the vast majority of those affected by the EO are genuinely benevolent souls seeking asylum in a better place. But within them are wolves shrouded in sheep's clothing. That is a known strategy. Are we just to wait for the numbers to rise to levels that get our attention?

Maybe look at it a different way: How often do you read of a car bomb or human bomber attack on a crowded cityscape somewhere in Iraq, Afghanistan or Syria? Boko Harem attacks? ISIS? These are things that are happening OVER THERE with daily frequency and it is only inevitable that they are moving west. France and Belgium are precursors to what is coming our way. Orlando and San Bernardino are a glimpse at what that looks like here.

I'm not at all saying the EOs are right or effective. I'm just saying that the threat matrix (jihadism, drug cartels, rouge nations, et al) is marching towards our doorstep and at some point, we will have to answer the door.