Canada, A New Addition To The Family Of Civilized Nations

The Velvet Revolution of 1989 brought most Czechs and Slovaks the first opportunity to speak freely, without fear of prison or loss of property, that they had enjoyed in fifty years.  We agree with Benjamin Franklin that the freedom to speak as one wishes is the lodestar by which one judges a nation civilized, or barbarous:

Freedom of speech is a principal pillar of a free government; when this support is taken away, the constitution of a free society is dissolved, and tyranny is erected on its ruins. Republics and limited monarchies derive their strength and vigor from a popular examination into the action of the magistrates.

Indeed, the freedom to voice one’s opinion, no matter how foolish, is nearly as important as the freedom to bear arms as a check on tyrannical government.

So it behooves us to congratulate the people of Canada on their ascension to the ranks of civilized nations. Canada has abolished its national speech code, also known as Section 13 of the Human Rights Act:

For decades, Canadians had meekly submitted to a system of administrative law that potentially made de facto criminals out of anyone with politically incorrect views about women, gays, or racial and religious minority groups. All that was required was a complainant (often someone with professional ties to the [Canadian Human Rights Commission itself) willing to sign his name to a piece of paper, claim he was offended, and then collect his cash winnings at the end of the process. The system was bogus and corrupt. But very few Canadians wanted to be seen as posturing against policies that were branded under the aegis of “human rights.”

That was then. Now, Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act, the enabling legislation that permits federal human-rights complaints regarding “the communication of hate messages by telephone or on the Internet,” is doomed. On Wednesday, the federal Conservatives voted to repeal it on a largely party-line vote — by a margin of 153 to 136 — through a private member’s bill introduced by Alberta Conservative MP Brian Storseth. Following royal assent, and a one-year phase-in period, Section 13 will be history.

To appreciate the horror that was ancien regime Canada, imagine a nation run like a modern American liberal arts college. Under the old code, the Canadian tribesman lived in fear that the merest off-color joke might provoke a lawsuit, in which he might be deprived of his property for offending his privileged betters. A Canadian might even be placed in a dungeon for recording an offensive message on the primitive Canadian device known as a  telephone answering machine.

It’s true that the savage Canadians are taking baby steps into the waters of liberty.  The repeal of Section 13 requires the assent of a person known as The Queen, a hereditary chieftain whose ancestors were given the office by virtue of their skills at tribal warfare. And the repeal doesn’t take place for a year, to allow time to adjust to life in a world where the Canadian cannot freely indulge his natural instinct to rob and imprison those with whom he disagrees.

Now, Rome was not built in a day. It will take the Canadian more than a year to emerge from his mud wattled hut, but this is a fine start on the road to a higher culture.

If you’re an American living on the northern frontier, and you see one of these primitives walking the street, gazing in awe at the majestic skyline, be sure to approach, cautiously, to congratulate him on his newfound freedom.

Spotted on Overlawyered.

Thanks, And An Update On The Status Of The Velvet Revolution Project

We appreciate the many links, comments, and new readers this site has gained in its twelve days of existence. It seems unfair to single out individuals, but we would like to thank Stacy McCain, Michelle Malkin, Patterico, and Instapundit in particular for driving a throng of traffic to this site, and more importantly, for links that weight Google’s (and Yahoo’s, and Bing’s, and Ask Jeeves’, etc.) rankings for the term “Velvet Revolution”.  We’ve gotten more traffic from Twitter, by far, than any of the sites named.

This is what we’ve been able to accomplish so far, as shown by a search inquiry from a Google server located somewhere in North America.

As you can see, Kimberlin’s “Velveeta Revolution” (as a wag at Stacy McCain’s site called it) occupies the coveted second and third places on a Google search for Velvet Revolution. This site is in eighth place, and gaining, thanks to you.

By far, our most popular post to date is “Brett Kimberlin and the Justice of Google” where we set forth this project’s goals of knocking felon Brett Kimberlin’s Velvet Revolution (with which this site is in no way affiliated and by which this site is not endorsed) into search engine purgatory, replacing it with a site that honors the true spirit of the anti-Communist Velvet Revolutions of 1989 while documenting Brett Kimberlin’s many crimes and abuses of the legal system.

Our next most popular post to date is “The Aaron Worthing Case Has Been Dismissed!”, a weak attempt at satire.

You people don’t seem to have much interest so far in our musings on non-Kimberlin matters, but we hope to change that.

This bar graph depicts the site’s traffic from its first post, on June 6, 2012, to a couple of hours ago:

There actually was traffic, from God knows where, between June 6 and June 10, 2012. You simply cannot see it on the graph, due to the deluge of June 14.

Our first “spam” comment, for what it is worth, was received on June 9, 2012. Since then, we have received many more, along with quite a few nasty comments by supporters of Kimberlin, comments which were neither sufficiently alarming nor amusing to highlight in a front page post.

Where do we go from here?

From here it’s a long slog.

In order to succeed, we, the authors of Velvet Revolution (not affiliated with VelvetRevolution.US, Inc.), have to work. We have to write a series of interesting posts that inform, amuse, or entertain a number of readers sufficient to spread our message, that Brett Kimberlin is an arch-criminal who has hijacked the ideals of the true Velvet Revolutions of 1989, far and wide.

But you can help. As stated earlier, any link to this site, on any web page indexed by Google, any blog, or Twitter, or Facebook, or Tumblr, or on  新浪微博 assuming the censors let it through, increases this site’s Page rank, thus increasing the odds that anyone searching for information on the term “Velvet Revolution” will come to this site, rather than that of a convicted perjurer. (We assure you that none of us has ever been convicted of perjury.)

Of those, blogs are our primary target. We deeply appreciate links from weblogs, which tend to be frequently updated, draw more than a few eyeballs, and have permanent blogrolls. If you have a blog, have you considered adding this site, the original Velvet Revolution, to your blogroll? It costs only a few pixels and a few seconds of your time. Of course any site will do: If you’re the chairman of Pepsi, or the Dave behind daveshardwareofrapidcity.com, a link from your website to this site brings us closer to our goal.

At the same time, we are not offering to trade blogroll positions with you. This may seem unfair, and in fact it is unfair, but it’s part of the challenge we set ourselves when beginning this site. Websites linked on our blogroll will remain limited to those which, in our judgment, have covered the Kimberlin story fairly and well, or those which promote human rights, freedom, and individual liberty in a manner we judge effective. If you believe we’re missing something, please let us know.

Thank you.

“We Will Make An Example Out Of You”

This is the Parable of the Boiling Frog.

Suppose one wishes to serve live-boiled frog at a fancy dinner. As epicureans know, the frog can only be appreciated  in all its juicy, succulent sweetness when it is cooked alive. But the frog is a wily beast. If we drop a frog into hot water, the frog will leap out of the pot, upsetting all our plans and enraging our wife in the process. We must boil the frog by degrees. If we submerge the frog into lukewarm water, only gradually raising the heat below our pot, the animal will be lulled to our stomachs. Never noticing each small rise in the water’s  temperature, the frog can be boiled before it ever realizes its peril.

Now, it is a truth universally acknowledged that when a man tells the Tale of the Boiling Frog, nattering imbecile James Fallows of the Atlantic will surely arise to shriek, “THAT’S NOT TRUE! SCIENCE TEACHES THAT YOU CAN’T GRADUALLY BOIL A FROG BECAUSE THE FROG HAS A HIGHLY DEVELOPED NERVOUS SYSTEM THAT SENSES MINUTE CHANGES IN TEMPERATURE!”

Missing the point entirely. The truth of the Boiling Frog is this:

You are a frog.

Everyone you know is a frog. All of your friends, and all of your family, are frogs.

There are two kinds of people in this world: frogs, and frog boilers. There are about a hundred thousand frog boilers in the world. Vladimir Putin is a frog boiler. Barack Obama is a frog boiler.* Jamie Dimon is a frog boiler. At European Union headquarters in Brussels there are dozens of frog boilers.

Brett Kimberlin is a frog boiler, albeit an unusually stupid and clumsy one.

The rest of the world, all five billion of us, are frogs.

So whenever the cook slips up, and raises the temperature a little too high, it’s vitally important for us to leap about and croak. To warn fellow frogs of our impending doom.

This is the story of a family of frogs, John and Judy Dollarhite of Nixa, Missouri. The Dollarhites and their child are being scorched by the United States Department of Agriculture. As frogs of good will, we are compelled to croak at our government’s misconduct.

It started out as a hobby, a way for the Dollarhite family in Nixa, Mo., to teach a teenage son responsibility. Like a lemonade stand.

But now, selling a few hundred rabbits over two years has provoked the heavy hand of the federal government to the tune of a $90,643 fine. The fine was levied more than a year after authorities contacted family members, prompting them to immediately halt their part-time business and liquidate their equipment. …

The Dollarhites’ crime? Selling six hundred rabbits, a few more than allowed by the arcane, unread regulations of the USDA, to a pet store over two years.

For a profit of about $500.00, the Dollarhites have earned a $90,000.00 fine, and threatens from Government Bigfoots:

[I]n January 2010, another USDA official called, asking for a meeting with the Dollarhite family at their full-time business, a small computer store.

The inspector watched the store for an hour from his car before the meeting, and his physical appearance put off the small business owners.

“He was covered head to toe in filth. Jeans is one thing, but these were slicked. He had ‘Grizzly Adams’-style hair,” Judy Dollarhite said.

The inspector, whose name Judy Dollarhite could not recall, intimidated the couple, claiming to have interviewed their neighbors about their political beliefs.

Bob McCarty has more on the McCarty’s “business operation” (which has been described as something on the scale of a 4-H Club), and the disturbing behavior of USDA’s agents:

Eight weeks passed, and John decided to call Colorado Springs.  Immediately, he was given the number to a USDA office in the nation’s capitol.  He called the new number, and the lady he reached there was blunt, John said.

“She said, ‘Well, Mr. Dollarhite, I’ve got the report on my desk, and I’m just gonna tell you that, once I review it, it’s our intent to prosecute you to the maximum that we can’ and that ‘we will make an example out of you.”

There is no allegation that the Dollarhites ever mistreated a rabbit. By all accounts their rabbits were well fed and cared for. Their error is one of ignorance, ignorance not of laws passed by an elected legislature, but of regulations imposed by fiat of bureacrats all the way across the Empire country in Tsargrad Washington.

To their credit, the Dollarhites are not backing down. They’ve hired a lawyer to contest the fine, and been promised in turn that USDA will seek far more than $90,000.00 if it prevails, to punish the Dollarhites for exercising their right to be heard in court.

For daring to jump out of the pot.

Via Amy Alkon.

Brett Kimberlin and the Justice of Google

On November 19, 1989, the people of Prague, in the former state of Czechoslovakia, gathered to commemorate a massacre of Czech students by Nazi Germany fifty years earlier. By the end of the day, the gathering turned into a demonstration against a ruling  Communist government that had begun massacring Czechs and Slovaks from virtually the moment the Nazis were booted out. By December 29, 1989, without a shot fired, the protesters had driven out their Communist masters, electing poet, playwright, and political prisoner Vaclav Havel as interim President. This peaceful revolt by a peaceful people against their Stalinist puppet government became known as the “Velvet Revolution”.

On November 30, 2004, convicted terrorist bomber, drug dealer, and perjurer Brett Kimberlin formed a Maryland corporation for the purpose of soliciting tax-exempt donations from the public and charitable foundations, to promote an alleged “network of more than 100 progressive organizations reaching millions of people demanding progressive change through our various campaigns”. Campaigns such as offering bounties for the head of the Chamber of Commerce, the impeachment of a Supreme Court Justice, and proof that John Kerry actually won the 2004 presidential election.

This corporation was also known as the Velvet Revolution, or “VelvetRevolution.US, Inc.” according to its corporate filings.

My name is Brett. My interests include botany, chemistry, and impersonating federal officers. I am studying to become a great lawyer. Won’t you donate to my charity?

Kimberlin, convicted of a 1978 series of bombings in Speedway, Indiana, is a product of a different time: the day of “radical chic”, of the celebrity terrorist, when murderers like Ilich Ramirez-Sanchez (“Carlos the Jackal”) were featured on the cover of Paris Match! Where today our government might reward a serial bomber like Kimberlin with a drone strike or a vacation in lovely Florence Colorado, Kimberlin served a scant 20 years in relative comfort, during which time he was able to collaborate on a biography with Mark Singer of The New Yorker. Singer would go on to describe Kimberlin as a “top-flight con man” when he realized that Kimberlin had lied about selling marijuana to the hapless Dan Quayle.

Please complete this sentence:  If Brett Kimberlin is a top-flight con man, that makes Garry Trudeau a top-flight …….. ?

As a child of the Disco Terrorist era, Brett Kimberlin seeks fame wherever he can get it. Most recently, Kimberlin has amplified his notoriety by filing a series of increasingly bizarre lawsuits and requests for injunction, such as the suit against blogger Seth Allen in which Kimberlin claimed Allen had damaged Kimberlin’s reputation as a terrorist bomber. Or consider the “peace order” that Kimberlin obtained against Aaron Worthing for writing that Kimberlin tried to frame Worthing for the crime of touching Kimberlin’s iPad. Each and every one of Kimberlin’s suits is an assault on free speech.

Not content to see its poster child, Brett Kimberlin, enjoying all of the fame, Kimberlin’s corporation Velvet Revolution, through its attorney Kevin Zeese, has gotten into the act by threatening to sue Ali Akbar of the National Blogger’s Club for inspiring “Everybody Blog About Brett Kimberlin Day”. A claim that turned out to be utter fish-dung.

We believe it is a farce and a disgrace that Brett Kimberlin seeks to cloak his nefarious acts under the name “Velvet Revolution”, a name which in the rest of the world stands for courage and dignity in the face of terror.

Brett Kimberlin stole the Velvet Revolution. We’re stealing it back.

If one searches for the Velvet Revolution on Google, the first result is a rather uninformative Wikipedia article. We have no quarrel with Wikipedia, or not much of one anyway.

The second result and most of its successors lead to Brett Kimberlin’s Velvet Revolution, a badly designed, garish website where Kimberlin seeks to separate you from your hard-earned money through sale of a bad dvd about peace love, and hippies, and to peddle his half-baked conspiracy theories.

This is unacceptable.

The second result of a Google search for “Velvet Revolution” leads to Brett Kimberlin. This is unacceptable.

Brett Kimberlin, and his associate Brad Friedman, do not own the name “Velvet Revolution”. They do not, and cannot, claim trademark or copyright protection in the term, because in the realm of politics, where Kimberlin and Friedman seek to meddle, the term “Velvet Revolution” is more generic than “Jell-O”.

Likewise, we do not own the name “Velvet Revolution”. No one owns the term. The Czechs and Slovaks who put their lives on the line in 1989 have a pretty strong moral claim, but they’re all in MittelEuropa. The Czechs and Slovaks have bigger problems than one terrorist moonbat making a mockery of a First Amendment that they don’t have anyway.

So we’re taking the name back, for them.

What are your demands?

Our needs are simple. We seek to drive Brett Kimberlin’s fake Velvet Revolution into third place, or lower, on a Google search for the term. We estimate that we can do this within six months. Eventually we’d like to knock Wikipedia out of the top spot, but all things in their time.

We seek to replace Brett Kimberlin’s fake Velvet Revolution with a fake Velvet Revolution of our own, a Velvet Revolution that tells the truth about Kimberlin and his henchmen, in order that past and potential donors to Kimberlin, such as George Soros, may be fully informed about who is cashing the checks.

Great. How do you propose to accomplish this?

Imagine Google, and its competitors Bing and Yahoo, in terms of politics.

Individual searches are like issues. The websites to which those searches lead are like constituencies. Large, highly trafficked websites, like Boing Boing, tend to be heard first where smaller, non-specialist websites are relegated to page 10, just as the bankers at J. P. Morgan get private White House audiences when ordinary citizens who want to meet the President have to pay $15.00 to enter a lottery and pray that Sarah Jessica Parker draws their names out of a hat.

But just as little people can gather to make their voices heard on important issues, a multitude of smaller websites can drown out the majors, through links. Eventually, whatever they’re linking to rises to the top of the search result.

In a just world, a terrorist like Kimberlin would be too ashamed to show his neckbearded, overbiting, felonious face on the street, much less associate it with a peaceful revolution against oppression. This is not a just world. But Google is just, and the association can be removed.

We’re asking you to link to this blog. On your own blog, on Facebook, on Twitter, on the web forum where you discuss taxidermy with your fellow taxidermists.

Wait, that’s … !

Yes, it is.

If you link to this post, this site rises to the top of a search for Velvet Revolution. If you add this site to your blogroll, this site rises even further. And Brett Kimberlin’s site falls.

And when the time comes for George Soros to write the annual check to Kimberlin’s Velvet Revolution, maybe the due diligence lackey will enter the Great Man’s office, saying, “Mr. Soros, I think you ought to read this…”

Because we’re going to talk about Brett Kimberlin, as long as he keeps filing his frivolous lawsuits. Which by the look of things isn’t going to stop, until Kimberlin slips up and goes back to prison. Even then he won’t stop.

What are you getting out of this?

Nothing.

We will never advertise. We will never hold beg-a-thons. We will never create a tip jar. We will never ask for help with hosting or bandwidth fees. We will never create an account through Amazon where a portion of each sale goes to us. We’re not in this for money. No good blogger is. It’s not a money-making hobby.

We’re in it because we are offended, because we are committed anti-Communists, committed Czechophiles, and because we hate what Brett Kimberlin and his ilk are doing to this country.

Our only reward is the satisfaction of a job well done, and eventually, an enraged frivolous lawsuit from Brett Kimberlin or VelvetRevolution.US, Inc.

We recognize that this site will live or die, will rise or fall, on its own merits and the quality of its writing. We’re confident in ourselves, and we’re confident in you, our readers. All four of you.

Do it for the Czechs.

A Spectre Is Haunting Europe

After 165 years of failure and genocide, Europeans still can’t come up with a better alternative to State Capitalism than Communism.

One of the surprise bestsellers at the Madrid Book Fair, a major literary event currently underway in the capital has been a beautifully illustrated edition of the Communist Manifesto.

Published by a small outfit called Nórdica and illustrated by Fernando Vicente, the seminal work by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels appears to be thriving in the current crisis, as though readers not only wanted to understand what is going on in the world, but also to find out whether there are any alternatives out there.

There are indeed alternatives for Europe, alternatives that have the virtue of never having been tried outside a 19th century flirtation in England, such as laissez-faire capitalism.  A flirtation that, we’ll add, vaulted the United Kingdom above France as the richest country in Europe, and increased prosperity in British dominions around the globe until they crashed it with their disastrous flirtations with socialism in the 1950s.

Unfortunately, laissez-faire capitalism is hard work: not the sort of thing that’s in vogue at the Madrid Book Fair.

Still, Marx’s leftovers are being sold in a most attractive attractive package, we’re sure you’ll agree.

We considered alternative cover illustrations for our forthcoming edition of the Manifesto, but they were so dull and gray:

Ivan Burylov, sentenced to eight years in GULAG for writing the word “comedy” on an election ballot.

Or symmetrical;

Or creepy;

But this one was just right:

Recommended Reading: Smug Triumphalism

When the urge takes us, we will recommend books on the topics this site covers.  For our inaugural post, I’d like to recommend five.

The definitive book on 1989, the year of the Velvet Revolution, has not yet been written (at least not in English), but Stephen Kotkin’s Uncivil Society: 1989 and the Implosion of the Communist Establishment, comes pretty close. The uprisings in Prague and Bratislava are not covered, but the remarkably non-violent popular movement in East German Leipzig is, as is the deeply weird Polish overthrow. Not to be missed is Kotkin’s description of the fall of Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu, deservedly shot by his former underlings. Your humble scribe witnessed 1989 from the relative gloom of Leningrad, where even the liberals had deeply mixed feelings about the loss of empire, but he can say that Kotkin captures the sleazy corruption of latter day communism accurately. As a bonus, the Amazon page for this book, linked above, contains a delightfully negative review by embittered communist R. L. Huff, who denounces Kotkin’s “smug triumphalism” even as he praises the Chinese communists for Tiananmen Square.

Boris Pasternak won the Nobel, but for my money the preeminent Soviet novelist is Vasily Grossman, whose Life and Fate far surpasses Doctor Zhivago as the 20th century’s best Russian novel. While hardly sympathetic to Stalin, Life and Fate, long banned in the Soviet Union, explains well to unbelieving westerners how the Red Tsar managed to command the loyalty of so many ordinary Russians who had every reason to turn on the state at the outset of the Nazi invasion. An epic war novel, Life and Fate is a conscious answer to Tolstoy’s War and Peace, and doesn’t suffer by the comparison.

Like Vasily Grossman, Artyom Borovik made his name as a war correspondent, in a decidedly less glorious struggle, the Soviet Afghan invasion. Borovik’s remembrance of his days in Afghanistan, The Hidden War, is written from a soldier’s point of view and well portrays the reality of a war that could not be won. As the body bags pile up, with no end to the war in sight, the reader can sense the Soviet Union’s impending collapse. Perhaps America would have been better served if the authors of our present Afghan misadventure had read Borovik rather than Kipling.

Homage to Catalonia is George Orwell’s account of his years in the Spanish Civil War, first as a reporter, then as a soldier. Orwell’s most important work will always be 1984, but Homage is his triumph, and Spain was the fire that burned all impurities out the man, transforming him from a socialist muckety-muck into a being of pure gold. If you’re going to read one book on this list…

Finally, Thomas Sowell is known to most as a guy with a column in small-town newspapers or on Townhall.com, the one who prints collections of “Random Thoughts” that boil down to, “Get off my lawn, kid.” That’s Sowell’s secret identity. The real Thomas Sowell, that web-slinging Thomas Sowell, is to be found Sowell’s longer form work, where Sowell transforms from a cranky old man into a distinguished scholar of law and economics. And that Thomas Sowell is best found in Knowledge and Decisions, a book length essay on hubris. That man is forced to make decisions based on limited knowledge is a given. That all too often those who make the most important decisions seem least aware of such limitations is the tragedy that forms our world.