Support Your Local Turnstile Jumper

Petty criminals are living in a golden age. Never before in the history of mankind have the elites of Western society been so concerned with the inconvenience enforcing the law imposes on the lawbreaking community.

Our ruling elite has this naïve belief the order they see in the more fashionable parts of their respective cities is the natural state of man. When in truth, Devil’s Night in Detroit is the natural state of man.

In Washington, DC the city council is most concerned about the law violating people.

The reporters at the Washington Post, ever prepared to hop aboard the next cultural fad, have found, “Some legislators are questioning whether fare evasion [on the Metro subway and bus system] should be a crime at all, arguing that targeted enforcement campaigns are bound to ensnare poor and low–income people who don’t have the money to pay their fares — let alone fines.”

This “fare evasion” worry is an offshoot of the “mass incarceration” delusion that posits minorities are being rounded up and thrown into prison on an unprecedented scale. It’s difficult to understand how people residing in a jail, after having been convicted by a jury, constitute an outrage. Common sense would conclude mass incarceration is a result of mass lawbreaking, combined with improvement in law enforcement technology.

It’s not a chicken or the egg question. It’s a chicken, egg, omelet progression.

The defies all logic part of the city council conundrum is how easy it is to avoid being arrested for fare evasion. The choices are practically endless. Pay the fare. Walk. Take a cab. Ride a bike. Carpool. Stay away from the Metro. None of those choices result in arrest. Only the choice to break the law results in arrest.

Yet, it’s the arrest and not the lawbreaking that concerns the council. And the DC isn’t alone. Other leftist hotbeds are working to decriminalize ride stealing. Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance, Jr. is proving you don’t have to be Harvey Weinstein for him to let you off the hook. According to The Wall Street Journal, “The Manhattan district attorney’s office says it has largely stopped prosecuting subway–fare evaders, offering many offenders alternatives such as counseling and community service.”

In 2015 the entire state of Washington decriminalized turnstile jumping for minors. Their excuse being “such convictions would give teenagers criminal records and that it would be difficult for them to make it to court to challenge a citation.” Unless the court is on a subway line.

Removing responsibility for teenagers is the real pipeline to mass incarceration. The WaPost may contend it’s “unclear whether decriminalization has led to more fare evasion.” But I can give you a hint. Ask an illegal, during a break between demonstrations for his “rights,” what lax enforcement has done for the border–jumping community.

This is where the incoherence of the left’s philosophy regarding responsibility and maturity is so obvious. According to the cultural Marxists who rule us, a four-year-old boy is mature enough to decide if he wants to grow up as a man or a woman and start a drug regimen that will affect him the rest of his life.

While a 16-year-old male is not quite mature enough to evaluate the consequences of breaking the law.

One of the tools used to beat law enforcement into submission is statistical disparity. Cherry–picking data is the greatest gift to race hustlers since Jesse Jackson’s first paternity suit. A New York group contends arrests for fare evasion happen more often in low–income neighborhoods. This has all the scientific rigor of the claim that you won’t find many cats in a neighborhood with Chinese restaurants.

Arrests reflect the number of times the crime occurs. At the Capitol Hill Metro station there are very few arrests for fare evasion, unless Antifa is in town. I suppose the system could post a Turnstile Jumper Apprehension Team, where it would be as lonely as the Maytag repair man, but it would not be a good use of taxpayer funds.

The ACLU is among the professional agitators pushing decriminalization. Nassim Moshiree explains, “Absolutely there’s been a raised consciousness on this that did not exist 20 or 30 years ago.” And right he is, since approximately 30 years ago is when the New York City subway system was a dangerous and disgusting carnival of aberrant behavior that repelled riders.

The New York subway started its climb out of the sewer when respect for if not the rule of law, then at least the consequences of law was reestablished. Today none of these preening social justice warriors remember those days. Instead they are more than willing to risk the safety of your commute in the future to appease law breakers today.

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Oh, Give Me a Home Where the Good Groceries Roam

One doesn’t have to be perpetually disgruntled to work in the Opposition Media, but it certainly helps. Not every Democrat operative disguised as a newsman can be assigned to the White House, but that doesn’t mean those unfortunates who aren’t can’t contribute to increasing the national vague sense of outrage.

The Washington Post is filled with stories designed to do just that. Recently the Metro section introduced readers to yet another artifact of our corrupt national system: “D.C.’s grocery gap reflects city’s income divide.”

Now don’t make the mistake I did and assume this is another hunger story. Hunger has been vanquished more thoroughly than Al Gore! The War on Hunger is the only successful social program in the history of Democrat handouts. I defy you to visit a school, mall, theatre, bus station, airport or stadium and find undernourished people.

Winning the War on Hunger was not a painless victory. There was collateral damage just like we see in kinetic conflicts. In Afghanistan collateral damage is typically confined to “wedding parties,” which limits the exposure of the general population. Collateral damage from the War on Hunger hit most of our population. Everything from weddings to wakes was affected. Many victims are still burrowing their way out of the adipose rubble, which tends to concentrate on the waist and behind.

America is now the land of the over–nourished.

Even the kids we’re told are one English muffin from disaster and must therefore eat free breakfast and lunches in government schools are fat. Gyms do a booming business because America is fat. Try this experiment and see if you don’t agree: The next time you go to a mall count the number of people you see who aren’t chewing.

Government bureaucrats and non–profit compassioneers have noticed this worrisome trend. The government compassion gravy train doesn’t attract the type of employee who will march in a Victory over Hunger parade through the streets of New York and then go get a real job. They prefer to redefine the mission and keep the tax dollars flowing.

That’s why instead of stories about hunger, we read about “food anxiety.” That’s a term that covers everything from genuine deprivation to worrying about a gas station burrito. The War on Food Anxiety is so nebulous its participants never have to worry about victory being defined. Traveling alongside “food anxiety” in the mission creep cavalcade is the concept of the “food desert.”

This doesn’t refer to a genuine desert like the Mohave where there is no food. “Food deserts” are a snob’s wasteland, like my old home in Odessa, TX, where there are no upscale groceries and people can’t pronounce “quinoa.”

The WaPost story was something of a hybrid. The Post sniffs, “In 2016, nearly 70 percent — or 34 — of the city’s 49 supermarkets were in four wards that are predominantly white and have the District’s highest household incomes, according to the review by D.C. Hunger Solutions, a nonprofit advocacy group.”

This combines Bernie Bro suspicion of capitalist motives with segregated geography paranoia. In this instance call it “whitebread privilege.” As Beverley Wheeler, director of DC Hunger Solutions, warns, “Grocery-store access is a racial equity issue that must be dealt with, and it’s a health issue. We can no longer pretend we don’t see what we see.”

So what is it they are seeing? Duck hunters are notorious for going where the ducks are. Retail merchants, which includes grocers, are equally notorious for building where the money is. It’s not a black thing, it’s a green thing. For the same reason one doesn’t find many Harris–Teeters in Appalachia.

And what good would it do residents of Wards 7 and 8 in DC to have a grocery store where they couldn’t afford to shop? At one time I defined wealth as being able to shop at Sutton Place Gourmet without worrying about the final tab. But I didn’t torture myself by walking up and down the aisles admiring groceries I couldn’t afford to buy.

Are there benefits to envy of which I’m unaware?

Companies look for average income, crime rates, transportation access and available real estate. This makes choosing the site of a grocery store is about as impersonal as statistics can make it. The decision is not based on a whim like choosing the headquarters for the corporation. Those usually land within a short drive or helicopter jaunt from the Chairman’s favorite home.

Frankly I don’t see how convincing the people she purports to help that their grocery stores are second–class is going to improve morale in those wards. Wheeler is quick with complaints and the Post is eager to amplify, but frankly this strikes me as a “problem” that won’t find a solution.

Virginia Election Determined by Angry Swamp Creatures

The Virginia off–year election for governor demonstrates what would have happened last year if the Constitution didn’t require an Electoral College.

Crony Conservative Ed Gillespie carried 82 counties compared to Democrat Ralph Northam’s 13. The 69–county advantage didn’t mean squat though. All that counted was Northam’s 230,853 vote margin that put him in the governor’s mansion.

I assumed that Gillespie’s loss was due to his tepid embrace of President Trump’s populism and a generally uninspiring campaign. Gillespie’s issues may have been a hit with focus groups, but in the real world the campaign landed with a thud.

Gillespie is as much a conservative as Elizabeth Warren is a Comanche. Jeb Bush may have been low energy, but Ed Gillespie was low emotion. When a candidate speaks conservatism as a second language it’s tough to be fluent discussing issues important to the base.

Unfortunately, the numbers don’t support my case for conservatives and Trumpistas rejecting our lobbyist–in–waiting. It’s hard to evaluate intensity since Virginia doesn’t register voters by party. And you can’t compare the 2013 primary to the 2017 primary because in 2013 Republicans held a convention.

Since the big issue for Democrats and the OpMedia was the so–called Trump effect, it makes sense to examine counties carried by the president. It appears many Virginia conservatives were more tolerant of Establishment Ed and his amnesty background than I was.

Ballotpedia identified five counties in Virginia it terms “pivot counties” because they voted for Obama in 2012 and Trump in 2016. These counties should be the home of swing voters and the type of voter Gillespie would have to hold to win. During the GOP primary the ineffectual but bombastic Corey Stewart won only two of the five counties, indicating swing voters found Enervating Ed an acceptable candidate.

In the general election Gillespie again carried all five of the “pivot counties.” In three his margin was less than Trump’s, but in the other two his margin exceeded Trump’s. Analyst Jim Crumley contends it was Gillespie’s failure to turn out the Trump vote that cost him the election. I disagree. Gillespie got 66 percent of the Trump voters to go to the polls in an off–year election, which is very good when you consider overall voter turnout was only 47 percent.

What beat Gillespie was the remarkable 71 percent of the Hillary voters that Democrats turned out. Then if Gillespie’s loss wasn’t due to conservative turnoff, what was the cause? Simple, this election was the revenge of the swamp creatures. Republicans in the House of Delegates lost a shocking 14 seats and a stunning 11 of those losers were incumbents.

Looking at a color–coded map of the state by legislative district makes my case. All but one of the flipped seats were either in the suburbs of Washington, DC; the government installation–heavy Norfolk area, government–centric Richmond and isolated Communist cells in the university towns of Lynchburg, Roanoke and Blacksburg.

A combination of Big Government and Big Dependency helped the swamp break through the levee and inundate neighboring House of Delegates’ districts. Government pounded the governed.

And who can blame them? Trump has targeted Big Government from his first days in office. It’s a public–spirited swamp creature indeed who would vote for the party of the man who claims to be draining their habitat.

In February of last year — at the time I was on Cruz Control — I wrote a column about the best reason I’d seen so far to vote for Trump. A GovExec.com poll claimed that up to 25 percent of the federal workforce would consider quitting if Trump were elected.

It proved to be just another Big Government lie, but the survey was a useful indicator of attitude. The federal workforce and its various hangers on that include contractors, NGOs, lobbyists, handout seekers and crony capitalists see an unprecedented threat to their livelihood if Trump is successful. That fear and OpMedia–fed loathing led to an unprecedented negative, straight–ticket vote against Republicans.

They didn’t so much vote their pocketbooks as they voted to keep draining yours.

The question for Democrats is can they replicate this success in the 2018 mid–term elections? I’m doubtful. Metro can only export so many federal workers and camp followers to the surrounding DC suburbs. And it’s a cinch Trump isn’t planning to go on a nationwide federal hiring frenzy so he can send more Democrats to the polls.

That doesn’t mean Democrats won’t win by other means. If the Republican Keystone Kongress — the Gang That Couldn’t Govern Straight — doesn’t pass meaningful tax reform or repeal Obamacare; but does pass amnesty for DACA invaders, I predict a wipeout.

One in which I will gladly participate.

Why Expecting Subway Passengers to Pay Is Racist

A select group of Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) passengers discovered what happens when government ignores the “Broken Windows” theory of policing in favor of the left’s “Let It All Hang Out” philosophy.

Bart with gun Logo“Broken Windows,” introduced by James Wilson and George Kelling, held that a community starts to deteriorate when political leadership de–emphasizes enforcement of “quality of life” ordinances.

Wilson and Kelling used the example of a building with a couple of broken windows. If the windows aren’t repaired, vandals will continue to break windows until there is no glass at all. Failure to repair the first few signals that there won’t be any consequences for breaking more in the future.

Deterioration continues until vandals break into the building and destroy the inside, too.

The social scientists contended the same thing happens in cities. If law enforcement ignores “quality of life” crimes like public urination, drinking in public, littering, graffiti and vandalism then disorder spreads and escalates.

By 1990 William Bratton, chief of New York City’s Transit Police, was tired of supervising the transit equivalent of Subway from Hell so he ordered his troops to crackdown on quality of life offenders. Plainclothes cops started arresting fare jumpers, aggressive panhandlers and vandals. Crime plummeted as a result of enhanced enforcement.

New York’s subway system became safe enough for politicians to ride.

In 2017 BART discovered it, too, has a problem with fare jumpers. The San Francisco Chronicle reports “22,000 people a day may be illegally riding BART for free — and depriving the transit system of as much as $25 million a year.”

For most of us that’s a lot of money, but for some BART board members it was a small price to pay if it kept BART cops from harassing minorities.

BART board member Lateefah Simon — a former fare–jumper herself— is convinced there are just as many upper–income seniors jumping fares as there are minority leapers, but BART cops will someone concentrate their enforcement on “teens, minorities and the homeless.”

“We don’t want to create more problems than we solve,” she explained.

So while the board was dithering a problem created itself.

Five days after Simon pooh–poohed a plan for fare enforcement, a mob hijacked a BART train. As reported by SFGate, “A mob of 40­60 young people streamed onto a BART train in Oakland Saturday night, robbing multiple riders of bags and cell phones and injuring at least two people.

“Juveniles jumped the fare gates and rushed aboard at least two cars of a Dublin-bound train at Coliseum Station shortly before 9:30 p.m. Some members of the group held doors open, stalling the train, while others ran through cars and some robbed and assaulted passengers.”

BART management was contrite: “Before all else, our hearts go out to the passengers who were victims of Saturday’s robbery.”

Once the sympathy was out of the way, BART reverted to best practices for leftists that put a higher priority on political correctness than keeping the peace. It lied.

“Overall, crime has been on the decline, and we want to stress that this robbery is neither reflective of the safety of our system nor of public transportation generally. We strive to provide a safe place for our passengers….”

Only crime isn’t down. Crime is up 22 percent in the first quarter of 2017. In fact crime is so obvious and out of control that acting chief Jeffery Jennings has declared a state of emergency.

Sympathy after the fact would not have been necessary if BART management practiced competence before the incident. Ignoring an obvious and expensive problem like rampant fare jumping only encourages the practitioners to push the limits and escalate their law breaking.

A sensible solution would be to let the data determine where to enforce. I think the term for that is science and the left claims to be the party of science.

The system has cameras in the stations and it can determine which stations are hotspots and at what time incidents occur. This common sense research might have prevented the taking of the BART train, since it occurred right after a juvenile–heavy event ended.

There is no indication the board will even try to mine the data. Adopting a “Broken Windows” policy might result in too many minority arrests, so the board is willing to risk a few broken heads.

I’m not so sure passengers on the Dublin–bound train agree with that choice.

Quality of life laws aren’t designed to inflict discrimination; they’re designed to establish a baseline for public behavior. These laws protect the elderly, the infirm, the young, the female and the wimpy, while restraining the unruly.

Regardless of whether government tolerates broken windows or broken turnstiles, it always leads to broken heads in the end.

Finally! Democrats Support Cutting Off the Money

It hasn’t made the national news (except for this column) but for a brief time it looked like Democrats around our nation’s capital were going to accept the fact the federal government can withhold funds from states that don’t cooperate with the feds.

And this wasn’t a mere threat to turn off the spigot; funds for Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia have been cut off.

metro-cartoonYet no Democrats are vowing to fight to the last ditch to get their money. No state attorneys general are rushing to the courthouse hoping to find a federal judge willing to write legislation from the bench. No legal defense funds have been established. No lawyers have been hired. No posters have been printed. And no protestors wielding superglue and PVC pipe have blockaded entrances to buildings.

Why George Ramos wasn’t even thrown out of a news conference for asking impertinent questions.

If you’re thinking now that Trump has vanquished the Sanctuary City movement, it’s time to move on to Obamacare repeal, I have bad news.

Now I’ve got you. You’re wondering what bad news? The question is easily answered by clicking on the link below and reading the entire column on Newsmax.com:

http://www.newsmax.com/MichaelShannon/city-federal-funding-sanctuary/2017/03/01/id/776296/

 

 

Quanah Parker’s House Joins Geronimo’s Teepee

It’s not every day you can lean on the dining room table that once belonged to the Comanche’s last war chief, Quanah Parker, and wonder if your feet are going to crash through the floorboards.

The table that once hosted Teddy Roosevelt and Geronimo is now surrounded by a house that’s collapsing due to lack of funds and lack of will power.

Quanah Parker's House near Cache, OK.

Quanah Parker’s House near Cache, OK.

Somehow a nation that puts a minor figure like Sacajawea on its coinage can’t coordinate the rescue of a house that personifies a man who successfully lead his people through the transition from savagery to civilization.

Quanah Parker was the foremost warrior of his time, the real “Lord of the Plains.” Parker was a cruel, ruthless raider who recognized the Comanche way was ending. Instead of living out his life as a despondent ward of the Great White Father, Parker became a businessman, hob–knobbed with the famous and represented his tribe in Washington.

The house symbolizes the transition. Cattlemen driving herds north needed grass and water, both of which Parker had in abundance. They asked what he would need from them in return for grazing rights.

Parker said build him a house just like the one the commandant of Ft. Sill lived in — only bigger. And thus Star House was born.

Parker lived in it until his death in 1911. His last direct descent to occupy the house was Linda Parker Birdsong. In 1957 the Army decided to take her land and use it for a firing range. Birdsong was promised the house would be moved, but in typical Pentagon fashion Star House was dumped in a field and the contractors abandoned it without reinstalling the stoves or providing a connection to running water.

Although it was uninhabitable, it wasn’t neglected. Birdsong sold the home to the uncle of the present owner, Wayne Gipson, and it served as an amusement park tourist attraction.

In 1985 the park was forced to close by skyrocketing insurance rates — another gift to America from trial lawyers — and the revenue dried up. Keeping a two–story, eight–bedroom house in good repair proved too expensive for Gipson, who lives on the proceeds of a small restaurant and trading post.

Now the house is on the verge of disintegration. The roof is gone from much of the rear and the second story is so unstable and dangerous, I didn’t risk trying to see it for myself.

In 2015 a reporter from the New York Times came to visit and he was optimistic that a May flood, which ruined most of the rugs and wallpaper, might have a sliver lining. “I think the best thing that could have happened is the flood,” said Chenoa Barhydt, a Comanche Nation official. “This will start a conversation about saving it.”

It was a short conversation. The house dried out and the promises dried up. Gipson said although the Comanche nation promised extensive help, nothing materialized.

And there the situation stood until a grant paid for an architectural assessment report. Just stabilizing Star House will cost $200,000. Restoring will run over a million. After the report Comanche Nation officials promised to spring for pocket change and register a “savethestarhouse.org” website to take donations. But digging the change out of the sofa must have been a bigger challenge than expected because the website is dead.

Let’s put this in perspective. The most recent figures (from 2006!) show the Comanche nation made a $35,000,000 profit from their four Oklahoma casinos and, with one exception, for the next ten years revenue has increased. Yet the nation is passing the hat among outsiders to raise money to save the last home of its greatest war chief.

Part of the problem is Gipson, a non–Comanche. The nation wants him to give up control of Star House, evidently out of the goodness of his heart. The other is foundations and government won’t donate to an individual for a restoration project of this type. Someone will have to establish a 501(c)3 tax–exempt charity to accept donations, a project beyond Gipson’s means, but well within that of the Comanches.

Gipson may not be the easiest person to deal with, but he’s obviously not viewing Star House as a profit center. If he had, Gipson would’ve been selling Parker’s furniture piecemeal over the years to collectors.

The feds spent $199 million building the Museum of the American Indian; the Comanches make millions in profits off their casinos each year and Gipson made $8.00 in sales the day I visited.

The Comanches, Oklahoma and/or the feds must to come up with a solution that includes Gipson and saves the house. Now. Otherwise Star House is going the way of Geronimo’s teepee.

Trump Protesters Do Violence to “Peaceful”

The inauguration will be a learning experience for President Trump in more ways than one. To begin with, he’ll see first hand just how hard it will be to re–establish the rule of law in the United States and he will learn just how deep the “resistance” to his administration extends into government.

My fear is Trump’s inauguration will either be an asymmetrical warfare defeat for security forces or a willing surrender. The homeland security apparatus appears to be preparing to prevent an attack by jihadis when the big threat to the ceremony is an attack by jerks.

trump-protestThe mainstream media who vilified and lied about candidate Trump can now hardly wait to cover Trump inauguration protests it helped generate. The Washington Post is fired up, “Planning for protesters is taking up more bandwidth ahead of the quadrennial festivities in the District than at any time in over a decade.”

The focus of security planning should be on people coming to enjoy the inauguration. These citizens should be able to travel to and from the event safely and otherwise undisturbed as they celebrate the victory they worked so hard to produce.

Unfortunately, planning priorities are exactly backwards. I have yet to read a statement by any security functionary, police chief, mayor, congressman or even K–9 dog assuring law–abiding citizens here to witness a peaceful transfer of power that the government will do its best to make sure Trump supporters enjoy the day.

The sentiment seems to be: What did you expect? We voted for Hillary.

Official pronouncements certainly fail to reassure law–abiding Trump voters who plan to attend the festivities. See for yourself what collaborating officialdom says and what a rule–of–law response to disruption should be by clicking the link below and reading the rest of my Newsmax.com Insider column:

http://www.newsmax.com/MichaelShannon/trump-inauguration-protest-illegal/2017/01/17/id/769037/

 

Uncle Remus’ Solution to Obamacare Repeal

“Roast me! Hang me! Do whatever you please,” said Brer Rabbit. “Only please, Brer Fox, please don’t throw me into the briar patch.”

Uncle Remus Stories

Gullible Republican House and Senate members, convinced that repealing Obamacare also involves replacing Obamacare, are preparing to throw Democrats right into the middle of the federal briar patch that is their natural home.

repeal-obamacare-cartoon-heller-495x342

Sure Democrats are making a big deal out of the repeal of Obamacare — there are even rumors Obama himself cut back to golfing only six days per week — yet replacing Democrat meddling in the healthcare marketplace with Republican meddling is no improvement and worse still, gives Democrats an avenue to expand their interference in the future.

Think of Obamacare as one of those patients with a pre–existing cancer. The merciful response is to eradicate the cancer once and for all. There will be some pain and uncertainty, but in the long run the patient and the country will be much better.

Exchanging Obamacare for some jury–rigged replacement only means Republicans decided they want a tumor of their own. It makes federal intrusion into healthcare a permanent feature of modern life.

Our weak, vacillating GOP leadership faces a Treaty of Versailles situation. At the conclusion of World War I the allies wanted to end Germany’s war–making capability, but during negotiations the allies made a crucial mistake. They repealed the Imperial German Army and its General Staff, replacing it with a smaller Weimar Army. German bureaucrats just hid General Staff personnel in a tame sounding “troop office.”

When Hitler came to power the foundation of the Wehrmacht already existed, all he had to do was add manpower. That’s the danger for “Mitch McClellan” and Paul Ryan: Replacing Obamacare with the Wehrmacht–in–waiting. When the next Democrat Congress or president takes office they simply have to ramp up spending and “reform” the Republican replacement and we’re back where we started.

So what should Republicans do after repealing Obamacare? I have a four–point program that protects Constitutional government, taxpayers and patients. You can find all the details by clicking on the link below and going to my Newsmax.com Insider column.

Thanks.

http://www.newsmax.com/MichaelShannon/obamacare-repeal-replace-legislation/2017/01/12/id/768208/

 

 

Football Flashback to An Earlier Era

This season a remarkable decision took place on the next–to–last play of the Oklahoma vs. Oklahoma State football game. This intra–state championship matchup dates back to 1904, but this matchup was particularly important. Oklahoma was ranked #9 and OSU just behind at #10. The game winner would not only have bragging rights, the victor would also be the Big 12 champion.

perine-kneeMy alma mater OU got off to a ragged start. The defense was exceptionally porous and the usually reliable running game stalled. Then in the second quarter Heisman Trophy candidate receiver Dede Westrook was knocked unconscious after being hit while making a catch.

OU dropped seven points behind, but managed to tie 17 – 17 to end the half. In the third quarter, just as prospects were looking up for the Sooners, RB Samaje Perine limped off the field and into the locker room.

Perine is the Sooners’ hammer. He’s a punishing straight–ahead runner who brings back memories of Steve Owens. Without him the load would go to Joe Mixon, who so far was having an off day. It looked like a long afternoon ahead.

Then without ceremony Perine quietly returns. Viewers, like the OSU defense, learned he was back when he got the ball. On a rainy, slick day OU wanted to keep the ball on the ground and use up the clock. Perine got the ball play after play after play. OSU had eight players stacked on the line and they knew who was going to get the ball, yet he kept going.

On the last drive of the game he carried the ball 11 times and it looked toward the end like some OSU players had their fill of tackling Perine. They began making what Deon Saunders called “business decisions.”

Then it happened. On what became the last time he would touch the ball, Perine broke through line and had a clear path to the goal line. Nothing short of Divine Intervention could have prevented a touchdown, yet just before he crossed the goal line, Perine stopped, took a knee and ended the play.

The announcers didn’t make much of it at the time, as OU ran out the clock, but the significance struck me immediately.

It was an extraordinary act of sportsmanship. Maybe viewers who have never played a contact sport miss these nuances, but those of us who have appreciate a player who has some reverence for the way a game should be played.

In rivalry grudge matches, particularly when one of your star players has been knocked out of the game, it’s natural for teams to want to punish their opponent and the scoreboard is the natural place to do it.

Perine didn’t. When asked about the play after the game he explained, “I mean, what’s the point of scoring? We’re already up by two touchdowns. There’s only a few seconds left, so there’s no need to run up the score. I just did what I thought was the right thing to do.”

Coach Bob Stoops explained that taking a knee was all Perine’s idea, “God bless him. “What a class, character guy. It’s character. That’s him. Rather than padding his stats, just take a knee. No sense in running it up on somebody.”

This is typical of Perine. He plays like the coach is Vince Lombardi. Earlier in the game Perine crashed head–on into an OSU defender on the goal line and swept by him for the score. Instead of treating teammates, TV cameras and opposing players to 20 seconds of interpretive dance, Perine handed the ball to the nearest official and walked back to the huddle.

Like Lombardi said, he acts like he’s been in the end zone before.

While he’s got the ball Perine is all business and all contact, but even in this heated rivalry game he helped OSU players to their feet more than once. After the game he sits in the back of the interview room and lets other teammates bask in the spotlight.

The knee and what it signified might be Perine’s last regular season carry for Oklahoma. Perine is a junior. An average performance in the Sugar Bowl will put him ahead of Owens and probably ahead of Billy Sims, giving him the all–time Sooner rushing record. He’s eligible for the NFL draft and as my son says a running back’s body can only take so many hits, to Perine may as well be rich when he’s bruised.

If he leaves, I’ll miss watching him, but what a way to finish.

Thirty–seven carries, the most by one running back in the last 27 years, 239 yards, one touchdown for the record books and one he decided to donate to sportsmanship.

Republican Party Now Controlled by Depend Caucus

For a guy who’s billed as the next great Republican political wizard, he sure makes a lot of rookie mistakes.

No, I’m not talking about Donald Trump. I’m talking about Speaker of the House Paul Ryan — the Hamlet of Pennsylvania Avenue.

ryan-good-bad-stupid-678x381Now Ryan is doing the Hokey–Pokey over Trump’s just–released video “How to Impress Women Like the Stars Do.” I say now, because this is only the most recent example. Ryan earlier was weathervaning over Trump’s Twitter war with the Democrat’s angry Arab. Before that it was Trump vs. the ethnic–supremacist judge. Prior to that it may have been the disabled reporter. Somewhere in there we have Carly Fiorina’s face.

Unless you have a Democrat opposition researcher in the family it’s hard to keep track.

The only thing that’s certain is the joy in the enemy camp as Ryan predictably dances to the mainstream media’s tune and the rest of the Depend Caucus wrings their tiny hands.

There’re a number of problems with Ryan’s performance of the Politically Correct Polka, beginning with the fact it makes him look weak. This confirms what conservatives have been saying for months, but going public demonstrates Ryan’s fecklessness to the entire nation.

Politically Ryan’s weakness is an even bigger mistake for GOP members of the House he’s supposed to be leading. Responding to media inquiries regarding Trump’s shambolic campaign only serves to nationalize House races, which incumbent House members should certainly avoid. House races should stay local.

Incumbents talk about the pork they’ve brought home not the pork–brain at the top of the ticket.

House members, including the Speaker, have no control over presidential candidates. Regularly commenting on the Improv Impresario at the top of the ticket means what happens there also reflects on those members.

It’s the equivalent of the Uber passenger in a self–driving car being held responsible for the robot’s tickets.

Nationalizing a House race is what challengers do to try and ride the coattails of their presidential candidates and overcome the incumbent’s name ID and record within the district.

Ryan’s continuing comments on the Trump race puts pressure on all House candidates to answer Trump questions from local reporters who take their cues from the networks.

This idiocy won’t hurt Ryan — he’s in a safe district, otherwise he wouldn’t be Speaker — but it damages incumbents in marginal districts and it really handicaps GOP challengers. Instead of signing on for color commentary of the Trump race, Ryan should have told national reporters from the very beginning that he is focused on increasing the Republican House majority and he doesn’t have time to be an advisor for the Trump campaign, too.

The media won’t accept that answer, so he’ll be pressed. He repeats those questions are a distraction for House members concentrating on (insert message sound bite). Voters will have a chance in November to decide the presidential race and they don’t need my help to do it.

Then Ryan refuses to answer any more questions about Trump.

The media will tire of badgering him and move on to reliable RINO weasels and backstabbers like John McCain and Lindsay Graham. For proof this technique works we have only to look at Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. He finally shut up about Trump and the media stopped asking.

Ryan’s silence regarding the Trump campaign would allow other House members to do likewise. When a local news poodle asks them to comment on the latest Trump communication adventure, all they have to do is say, like Speaker Ryan, I’m concentrating on my own race where (insert political BS). Voters can make their own decision regarding Trump and Hillary in November.

Then they can shut the heck up.

Ryan’s failure to adhere to this obvious and sensible strategy calls into question his motives. Is he trying to appeal to GOP contributors that might otherwise stop giving? If so, he can tell them in private what I’ve written here. Does Ryan want to cozy up to the next administration? There’s probably a better chance for good relations with Hillary than with Trump. Or does Ryan want to be the national GOP leader acceptable to the media? He can ask Mitt Romney how that worked out.

A wise friend contends Ryan’s diarrhea of the mouth isn’t a mistake — it’s a fallback plan. Originally, Ryan wanted to block Trump’s nomination so the party would turn to him as nominee without subjecting him to a primary campaign.

Now Ryan just wants to defeat Trump regardless of the cost to the nation. Gov. Mike Huckabee contents the Republican RINO and consultant complex isn’t afraid Trump will lose.

They’re afraid Trump will win.

I’m beginning to think the governor and my friend are correct.