• Play the sound file
[Music clip: Haydn's Derbyshire March No. 2, big band version]
01 — Intro. And Radio Derb is on the air! That was the big band version of Haydn's Derbyshire March No. 2 and this is your furiously genial host John Derbyshire with commentary on the week's news.
And yes; while maintaining my core of irrefragable geniality, I am furious. To be precise, I am suffering another bout of savage indignation.
Just to remind you: here, extracted from my January 14th podcast this year, was my previous bout.
The great 18th-century satirist Jonathan Swift, the chap who wrote Gulliver's Travels, also wrote his own epitaph, as people sometimes do. "Here he lies," says the epitaph in Latin, "ubi sæva indignatio ulterius cor lacerare nequit" — "where savage indignation can no longer lacerate his heart."
And this is another one. This has not been a good week for those of us who favor an orderly society under a firm rule of law, with equal treatment for all citizens under that law. The very concept of equal treatment under the law seems to have disappeared altogether from our public life.
To be sure, that concept was not always honored in our past. As your grandma told you, though, two wrongs don't make a right.
We like to think that we make progress from a less fair, less just society to one that is more fair and more just. Indeed, our loudest and most powerful political faction flatters itself with the adjective "progressive."
On the evidence of this week's news we are not progressing but regressing, to something coarser, stupider, and more primitive. The phrase "banana republic" has been given a good airing this week. Yes, that's where we're headed. In fact, on this week's evidence, we're pretty much there.
02 — More sentences for the Brunswick Three. I'll begin with the week's greatest outrage; the same one, as it happens, that excited me to that previous spasm of savage indignation back in January.
The week's greatest outrage was of course the sentencing on Monday at a federal court in Georgia of the Brunswick Three: Gregory McMichael and his son Travis, and their neighbor William Bryan. The two McMichaels were given life sentences; Bryan, who is 52 years old, was given 35 years.
What monstrous federal crimes did they commit? The Brunswick Three, who are all white, interfered with the civil rights of a black man, Ahmaud Arbery. So judged the court. They were also judged to have attempted to kidnap Arbery; and in the cases of the two McMichaels, to have carried guns during a crime of violence.
These were federal charges, mind. The Brunswick Three were tried on state charges last year. All three were given life sentences then. So now they effectively have two life sentences apiece: one state, one federal.
This is a monstrous miscarriage of justice: two miscarriages if you count the state and federal trials separately. Excuse me, but I'll just quote myself again, podcasting after the state sentencings in January.
These were three honest, hard-working citizens, none of whom had any criminal record. Both the McMichaels had in fact served in law enforcement. Their intentions in confronting Arbery were plain: to defend their neighborhood against a likely thief who, whether or not they knew it, did have a criminal record.
After I podcast that I got some emails from listeners acquainted with Georgia State statutes who said that everything had proceeded properly; that the Brunswick Three were murderers under Georgia law. They gave me lengthy explanations as to why this was so.
All I can say to that is what the Beadle said in Oliver Twist, quote: "If the law supposes that, the law is a ass — a idiot." End quote.
And that Georgia State law does in fact suppose that was not the opinion of the D.A. who first investigated the case. His carefully-argued conclusion was that, quote: "there is insufficient probable cause to issue arrest warrants at this time," end quote.
For Heaven's sake: Two life sentences apiece? We don't treat hardened criminals this way, and these are not hardened criminals.
To add insult to catastrophic injury, both state and federal trials were attended by all the reptilian parasites of the Civil Rights racket, their eyes all aglow with dollar signs: Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Benjamin Crump, …
And then, for yet further insult, the court this week denied the three defendants' request that they serve their time in federal prison.
Why did they request that? Because in the Georgia state prison system, to quote Monday's New York Times, quote: "safety issues are so dire that they are the subject of an investigation by the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Justice Department," end quote. In the years 2020 and 2021 there were 53 homicides in Georgia's state prisons.
So, given that not only must a high proportion of Georgia State inmates be black but also a lot of the corrections officers, you can see why the Brunswick Three would prefer the federal pen. However, the federal judge presiding this week denied their request, saying she had, quote, "neither the authority nor the inclination," end quote, to accede.
Once again: the sentences handed down on Monday were on federal charges, in a federal court. The charges were, in other words, more of the rotten, poisonous fruit of the 1964 Civil Rights Act.
They don't actually make sense even in the 1964 context. At the time the Civil Rights Act was passed, it was not unknown for whites who killed blacks in the states of the Old South to be unjustly acquitted by local white juries. I don't think it was common, and certainly not normal, but it happened — in the Emmett Till case, for example.
The remedy established by Civil Rights legislation was, that in such a case the accused could be tried again on federal charges.
It made sense as a remedy sixty years ago, notwithstanding its plain offense to the centuries-old common law prohibition against double jeopardy, and provided it was used very judiciously, where the local acquittal had followed on from some flagrant violation of rights.
Whether there are instances where it might still make sense today, I'll leave you to discuss among yourselves. I'll only assert that federal Civil Rights prosecutions make no sense in the case of the Brunswick Three. They hadn't been found not guilty by a local jury of grinning whites for crimes they were obviously guilty of. They had been found guilty by a local jury — nine white women, two white men and one black man — and given life sentences.
There was no need for a federal prosecution to rectify an injustice. The federal case was just an act of prosecutorial spite — antiwhite spite. That in fact is what these Civil Rights prosecutions always are nowadays.
Nineteen sixty-four is most of a lifetime ago. Federal Civil Rights prosecutions today remedy no wrongs. The phrase "Civil Rights" in 2022 is just a euphemism for "black privilege" and naked, shameless double jeopardy.
The really astonishing thing here — and to me, and surely to anyone else with a sense of fairness, the most depressing thing — is the near-total lack of support the Brunswick Three have received in the media.
I don't expect anything from the regime outlets of course. Even The New York Post, the nearest thing we have to a counter-regime newspaper, tells us about the death of Arbery only that, quote, "the younger McMichael fired a shotgun into the jogger at close range," end quote.
That leaves Post readers with the impression that Travis McMichael squared off, took aim, and deliberately fired at Arbery. In fact Travis was in a struggle for his life, with Arbery's hands on his weapon.
I'll admit I don't watch a whole lot of Fox News, but the bits I did watch this week had nothing to say about the Brunswick Three. Tucker Carlson does, though, have a new show about flying saucers at Fox Nation.
Major media aside, even out here on the Dissident Right nobody's had much to say. Is everyone so spooked by the Civil Rights racketeers?
It was the same with the state trial and sentencing. I posted on the Brunswick Three back in October, and Jared Taylor covered the case much more professionally with two fine spirited posts in November and January. Jared also alerted us in April to a website set up for Mrs McMichael.
Those posts aside, and my savage indignation at the state sentences in January, I've seen surprisingly little on what seems to me a major outrage.
I urge listeners, and readers of the transcript of this podcast, to look up those posts — just do a site search at VDARE with search argument "arbery," or follow the links in the Radio Derb transcript when it's posted on the 17th.
Like Aztec sacrifices to the Gods, the Brunswick Three have had their hearts ripped out and their bodies rolled off down the temple steps, but they should not be forgotten.
03 — Raid on Mar-a-Lago. The second outrage of the week, also on Monday, was the FBI raid on Donald Trump's mansion in Florida.
This one doesn't need any lengthy reminders from me. You've been hearing about it all week.
What does Radio Derb think of it? Well, as I just said, it's an outrage. However, I'm not seething with savage indignation over this one. My political emotions are engaged, but there's nothing in the raid to stir normal human sympathies, as there is with the case of the Brunswick Three and their families.
When normal working- or middle-class people like the McMichaels and Roddie Bryan are stomped on by the managerial state and have their lives destroyed with far greater brutality than would have been the case if they were a different color, a fair-minded person — especially one the same color as them — is naturally stirred to indignant outrage and sympathy.
All the people concerned in the raid on Mar-a-Lago, however, are big people. This is not elephants stomping on mice, this is elephants clashing tusks with other elephants, or at worst with some lesser beasts well able to take care of themselves. Yes, it's shameful; and yes, there's something unpleasantly Third World about it; but it's a real contest, the outcome not a foregone conclusion.
And to be fair to Donald Trump, the "banana republic" simile that's had so much of an airing this week isn't altogether apt. If this were a real banana republic Trump would have milked his presidency for all it was worth, handing out monopolies on the banana trade to his friends and relatives.
While I don't know the numbers, it seems that Trump in fact left office no richer than when he entered it — possibly poorer. That's not very banana-republicky. And seven years of intensive, highly-motivated investigations of his affairs have come up with nothing worse than the Trump University scandal, a picayune thing as scandals go, and never one of Trump's core business interests.
Corruption-wise, a real banana republican — if you'll pardon the expression — would say that Trump wasn't even trying. Certainly the lifetime he's spent in the business world has left him with cleaner hands than the lifetime Joe Biden has spent in politics.
In any case, when a politician appeals strongly enough to a big enough portion of the electorate, he's forgiven some low level shenanigans. We see this with Viktor Órban in Hungary today, and with many American politicians of the past — Huey Long comes to mind.
Come to think of it, giving government or advisory positions to your family members, as Trump has done, is borderline banana-republican. There was some grumbling along those lines when John F. Kennedy made his brother Attorney General; but Kennedy was young, and handsome, and popular, so he got away with it.
So what will be the outcome of all this? The first thing that came to my mind when reading about the raid was that opinion piece by Michael Anton that I recommended to you a couple of podcasts ago, title: They Can't Let Him Back In. It's on compactmag.com.Sample quote:
While Trump's core MAGA agenda is decidedly not outside the historic bipartisan mainstream, it is well outside the present regime's core interests. Our rulers' wealth and power rise with open borders, trade giveaways, and endless war. Trump, at least in principle, and often in practice, threatens all three.
Anton chews over all the many ways the elites will try to prevent another Trump presidency:
Yes, Michael Anton paints a dark picture. At week's end, though, it looks possible that the Monday raid may backfire big-time. Reading comment threads and newspaper letters columns, I'm seeing something new: Trump as a victim. Samples from the New York Post letters columns, Friday. Edited sample:
Until this political hit job by Attorney General Merrick Garland and his toady FBI Director Christopher Wray, there was no way I was going to vote for Trump in 2024 (mainly because of his fixation on the 2020 election).
To be honest I was not going to vote for Trump if he ran again. I don't like narcissist people …
It takes a lot of hard work, patience, and ingenuity to make a victim out of someone as rich, loud, and successful as Donald Trump, but somehow the ruling class has managed to do it.
04 — Sanctuary City Mayors: "No more illegals!". This segment comes under the general heading: "It's hard not to laugh."
It's hard not to laugh at the Mayors of New York City and Washington, D.C. for howling because border-state governors are busing illegal aliens to their cities to relieve pressure on the small towns of Texas and Arizona.
New York's dimwitted Mayor Eric Adams is particularly laugh-worthy. The Governor of Texas, Greg Abbott, is up for re-election this fall. His challenger is Beto O'Rourke, whose appeal to Texans — or, indeed, to anyone other than TV comedians — is deeply mysterious, at any rate to me.
Well, Texas Governor Greg Abbott has been busing illegals to New York City, and New York Mayor Eric Adams has been sputtering and howling about it. Then on Tuesday this week he briefly quit howling to tell an afternoon news conference in regard to Governor Abbott that, quote:
I already called all of my friends in Texas and told them how to cast their vote. And I am deeply contemplating taking a busload of New Yorkers to go to Texas and do some good old-fashioned door knocking. Because for the good of America, we have to get him out of office.
The governor took it well, quoting the "Make my day" line from Dirty Harry and adding that there could hardly be anything better for him than for Beto O'Rourke to be assisted by "a bunch of New Yorkers."
I don't know, Governor. Last I saw, O'Rourke was polling pretty well, just six points behind you. You took a hit from the Uvalde school shooting back in May, by association with gun rights, and from the Supreme Court Dobbs decision on abortion, which riled up a lot of women.
It's a way yet to November, but I wouldn't get over-confident. Beto O'Rourke's appeal is a deep mystery to me, but a lot of Texans like him … or them, or xem, whatever his pronoun is.
On the main topic here, it's delicious to see Eric Adams and Muriel Bowser moaning and protesting at having illegal aliens bused in. These are sanctuary cities. In New York you can't even say "illegal alien" without city cops coming to break down your door. You have to say "asylum seekers," or "the undocumented community," or some such style of Wokespeech.
It's actually been double delicious in New York this week, with schadenfreude two layers deep.
New York City is now such a sinkhole of crime and dirt that word has apparently seeped out down and south of the border, so that illegals being bused here get off well before the Empire State Building hoves into view.
Last Sunday Mayor Adams went to the Port Authority Bus Terminal to personally welcome a busload from Texas. Forty people had been loaded onto the bus, but when it arrived the number was down to fourteen.
The Mayor suggested that the most likely reason was, quote, "because of the fear that something was going to happen to them if they came to this location, people got off earlier." End quote.
Well, yes. With major crime up forty percent this year compared to last and a line of cops twice round the block at Police HQ all filing for early retirement so as not to be the next Derek Chauvin, you can see how New York might be losing its appeal, even to Guatemalan share-croppers.
Down in Washington, D.C., meanwhile, Mayor Muriel Bowser has been nagging the Defense Department to assign National Guard troops for help in feeding and sheltering the influx of illegals … Sorry! Sorry! I mean, of asylum seekers.
So far the DoD has declined to help, referring the Mayor to FEMA, the federal disaster relief agency.
Come on, you mayors. You shouldn't be complaining about this. Aren't you both sanctuary cities? So what you should really be saying to Governor Abbott and Governor Ducey is: "Sanctuary much!" [Groans.]
05 — The latest congressional spend-a-thon. I'd like to pass an opinion about the IRA. No, not the Irish bomb-throwers, I mean the Inflation Reduction Act.
This is a major piece of federal legislation. It passed the Senate on Sunday and is supposed to be passed by the House of Representatives and sent to the president today, Friday.
Quote: "One of the most significant pieces of legislation passed in a decade. Things that Americans have longed for, and couldn't get done." End quote. That was Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer on Sunday.
Quote: "This is a fabulous bill we're going to pass. It's not anything that anybody, three months ago, would have said is a possibility. But it is, and we'll have a good strong vote, send it to the president … and the clock will start ticking." End quote. That was House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Thursday. I'd remind Nancy that clocks aren't the only things that tick … but she doesn't take my calls any more.
So plainly this is a very big deal. As I said, I'd like to pass an opinion on it.
It's kind of long to read, though: 755 pages when I looked. I don't have the hyper-fast speed-reading skills that members of Congress surely have.
I resorted to summaries in the press. This IRA is apparently a scaled-down version of Joe Biden's $2 trillion Build Back Better Act that the House passed last November but that Joe Manchin scuppered in the Senate. The Washington Post described Build Back Better Act as, quote, "a vast piece of spending legislation that greatly grew the role of government in Americans' lives," end quote.
This scaled-down version, this IRA, is costed at only $740 billion. That's just an estimate from earlier in the week, though. It's the only estimate I could find, and may not be right: the Congressional Budget Office seems not to have finished costing the thing.
Here's a quote from James Lucier, the managing director at Capital Alpha, a policy research firm based in D.C., quote:
This is the world's largest last-minute term paper. No one knows if the numbers add up and a lot of people aren't even sure what's in it anymore.
One figure the IRA does definitely seem to include is $80 billion for the IRS, to be phased in over ten years. They want to upgrade their systems, hire more techies, and presumably more front-line agents. The figure of 87,000 new personnel you've been seeing covers all that, and also replacement of retiring staff, so that's not all new agents, but no-one seems to know what the number of new agents will be.
Assurances from the administration that working- and middle-class Americans won't be getting audited any more than they are currently, are of course lies. One of the ground rules of government work is, always go for the soft target.
In the case of the IRS, just ask yourself which is easier for them: to pull in Charlie Citizen and run a fine-tooth comb over Charlie's few thousand dollars of tax credits, his few ten-thousands of annual income and his couple of hundred thousands in retirement accounts, or to launch an audit of Billy Billionaire, out of sight behind his thickets of lawyers and accountants.
Of course they'll target Charlie. It's easier for them.
If anyone in the ruling class wanted to make things easier for you, me, and Charlie, and cut the IRS down to one percent of its current size, saving the federal government untold billions, they'd institute a flat tax that we could file on the back of a postcard.
That would mean a great reduction in the number of government employees, though, and a corresponding loss of government power — the power, the sweet delicious power to pose as persons of importance with the right to boss the rest of us around. Unthinkable!
06 — Miscellany. And now, our closing miscellany of brief items.
Imprimis: I was sorry to hear of the death, at only 73, of singer and actress Olivia Newton-John. She made significant additions to the public stock of harmless pleasure, and faced dreadful misfortune with courage and good humor. May she rest in peace.
At the time of her movie fame in the late 1970s I was friendly with a family that included small children. These kids knew about Olivia Newton-John but got her name mangled. They somehow got it into their heads that she was Evolution John.
After hearing their chatter I was never able to think of the lady otherwise. So I hope her fans and loved ones won't mind if I say, with no offense whatsoever intended to the Creationist community: Goodnight, Evolution.
Item: It's not just in New York City that crime is surging; the problem is statewide. In Rochester, NY fatal shootings are up 26 percent compared with last year at this point. Violent crimes in Syracuse are up 23 percent, in Binghamton 80 percent, in Troy 100 percent.
Not to worry, though. New York State's Governor Kathy Hochul is on the case. On Monday she signed into law a statute to replace the word "inmate" in the state's legal code, as referring to people in jail. Such people will henceforth be referred to as "incarcerated persons."
The point of this change is, says our Governor, quote: "to reduce the stigma of being in jail … By treating all New Yorkers with dignity and respect, we can improve public safety." End quote.
Shouldn't there actually be some stigma attached to being in jail? Shouldn't it be a shameful thing? In that spirit, should I ever get elected to the state legislature, I shall move to have the term changed once again, to "jailbird."
Item: Did you read about the lady who was let off a minor traffic ticket when she flashed a White Privilege Card at the cops?
This happened in Alaska. The lady, name of Mimi Israelah — she is a Filipina — had arrived on an early-morning flight to attend a Donald Trump rally. On her way there she was pulled over for weaving in and out of her lane. Unable to locate her driver's license she showed her White Privilege Card instead. The cops were so amused they let her go.
I'd never heard of these cards, but I see they are available on Amazon from various vendors.
This is an encouraging development: the intrusion of some irreverent humor into the stern, solemn, po-faced antiracism cult. The wokesters are of course furious, which makes the whole episode even more delightful.
The two police officers, who are both white, have been placed on administrative leave while the Police Department carries out an investigation. My advice to them, to forestall possible disciplinary action, would of course be to use those eleven days to get themselves White Privilege Cards.
Item: Just one more New York item. Our main blood bank in downstate New York and environs is the New York Blood Center. Recently they've been running out of … well, blood. What else would a blood bank run out of?
In hopes of incentivizing New Yorkers to give blood, they have a campaign running through September 10th called Pint for a Pint. In return for a pint of your blood they'll give you a voucher, redeemable at 25 restaurants and breweries in the region for a pint of beer, cider, or other drink — presumably not wine or liquor.
The New York Post, which can always be depended on for a silly headline, captioned this story with Suds for Your Bloods. I guess "Booze for Your Ooze" didn't make it past the editors.
Item: Finally, just a brief note on politics elsewhere.
They had an election in Kenya on Tuesday. That is not something I would normally take the trouble to read about, but one of my followers directed my attention to this rather arresting paragraph in the New York Times August 6th report, quote:
One wild-card is a third candidate, George Wajackoyah, who has captured a small but boisterous protest vote on the back of his proposals to legalize marijuana and, more outlandishly, to export hyena testicles to China (where they are said to have medicinal value).
Now why can't we have issues like that in our elections? Taxes … climate change … national defense … bo-ring. I bet voter turnout would surge mightily if the export of hyena testicles to China was an issue on the ballot this November.
07 — Signoff. That's all I have for this week, listeners. Thank you for your time and attention.
Having started off this week's podcast with a burst of savage indignation, I'll close with something lighter.
For signout music last week, responding to a listener's request for some ukulele music, I gave you a snippet of 1940s British movie comic George Formby.
That stirred a different listener, another ukulele fan, to email in grumbling that there is much more to the ukulele than Formby and his smutty lyrics (which nearly got him banned from the BBC). This listener recommended I sample The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain.
I didn't see how you could assemble an orchestra just from ukuleles but I checked with YouTube and sure enough, there they are: The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain. There are six ukulele players and one guitarist … unless that is just a really big ukulele, I'm not an expert on stringed instruments.
So here to sign off with is The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain playing "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly." I'll just give you the finale, which I think is the best part. The vocals are performed by the players themselves.
There will be more from Radio Derb next week, unless we get raided by the FBI.
[Music clip: The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain, "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly."]