By Cole Ellenbogen

Possibly the Best Ski Run You Will Ever Watch

This guy skis better than most of us can walk. All I can say is well done.

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Californians Asked If They Saw Martin Luther King’s Speech Yesterday, Half Answer Yes

Jimmy Kimmel sent out a crew to film their weekly segment, “Lie Witness News,” yesterday, asking LA residents if they had watched Dr. Martin Luther King Junior’s Speech that morning, and how it stacked up to stacked up to speeches he had given in the past.

Jimmy Kimmel, who routinely does segments mocking the average American's willingness to pretend they know something that they don't.

Jimmy Kimmel, who routinely does segments mocking the average American’s willingness to pretend they know something that they don’t.

It’s absolutely amazing how little people really know… Take a look for yourself:

*Facepalm*

The real question is, did YOU see Dr. King’s Speech yesterday, and how do you think it compares to the one he gave in 1963?

-By Cole Ellenbogen

House Votes to Overturn Executive Action on Amnesty

In a vote earlier today, the House of Representatives voted 236-191 to overturn both the President’s executive action on immigration, as well as the DREAM Act directive which safeguards children of illegal aliens from deportation.

The bill still has to pass the Senate, and Obama has sworn to veto the measure should it reach his desk. However, passing this bill into law over a Presidential veto is not out of the question, considering that republicans gained seats in both the house and the senate, and this bill is more about protecting congress from executive overreach.

-By Cole Ellenbogen

Obama’s Proposal For Free College Perpetuates Huge Lie that Everyone Needs to Go to College

Before you get angry with me, or accuse me of hating people who can’t afford college, listen: it’s not that I don’t think everyone deserves the opportunity to pursue higher education, but its actually useless for everyone to have a college education.

The reason the job market has been so poor is that we have millions of undeclared university students who are going to college because they believe they have to in order to secure a good future for themselves, even though what they want to do may not even require a college education.

Totally necessary job, totally respectable career path.

Totally necessary job, totally respectable career path. College degree not necessary.

The fact of the matter is that there are plenty of great jobs that can even pay higher than vocations you would have with a college education, and are actually in demand! Sales consultants, stylists, cosmetologists, web designers, paralegal assistants, court stenographer, executive assistant, surveyor, mechanics, repair workers, plumbers – not to mention all of the inventors, entrepreneurs, and innovators who never attended or finished college. I know electricians that pull in six figure salaries and live in waterfront palaces, making more than I probably ever will.

This is a nice house. You can afford one of these whether you go to college or not.

This is a nice house. You can afford one of these whether you go to college or not. You just need to be motivated.

Of course, there’s an added bonus in going into one of these fields too: no crushing student loan debt. News flash: paying 30 grand, on average per year to get a degree in English, then ending up working in a drive through window because you have no idea how to apply what you learned, probably won’t set you up for the bright future you were expecting. Sorry.

Look at how happy he is. He's studying at The College on the Hill, getting a degree in eco-gender pan-african linguistic cultural literature. Money well spent?

Look at how happy he is: He’s studying at The College on the Hill, getting a degree in eco-gender pan-african linguistic cultural literature. Money well spent?

Federally funding two free years of college education for everyone will mean less people going to trade school, or taking up other lucrative occupations, because they feel there’s another obligatory two years tacked onto public education.

Improving our education system is important, of course – our standardized test scores are slipping as the U.S. education system falls in prestige on the global stage – throw some money at that if you want to do something to help. But encouraging everyone to go to college on the taxpayer’s dime isn’t going to bring about success for the nation, or its citizens.

To review:

-Free = tax payer funded

-Going to college just because, is a great way to dig yourself an inescapable grave of crushing debt

-Electricians make more money than I ever will, and don’t have to pay nearly as much to get trained. Seriously, trade school and apprenticeships are great options

-You don’t have to go to college to be successful, and sending more people to go to college to get degrees that they won’t use, because there aren’t jobs available or the degrees are useless, is a tremendous waste of money.

-By Cole Ellenbogen

 

Anti-Cop Protestor Has a Change of Heart After Going Through Police Training

A self-described radical activist and major opponent of law enforcement’s recent actions agreed to undergo police training, to see what it’s like to be an officer in a violent situation.

Reverend Jarrett Maupin underwent several basic scenarios where he would need to determine if it was appropriate to use force. In the first scenario, he failed to identify a threat, and was shot before he could draw his gun. In the second scenario, simulating an officer breaking up a fight between two unarmed men, Maupin choose to shoot a man who would not stop advancing toward him.

Afterwards, Maupin admitted that he didn’t realize how quickly the situation unfolds. That’s an important point for everyone to keep in mind when looking at these scenarios: police officers have dangerous jobs and need to make split second decisions. It’s much better to comply, and work things out later, than be belligerent and threatening toward an officer.

-By Cole Ellenbogen

Committing Voter Fraud is Actually Super Easy

I was at a polling place to vote in a local election recently; I was sure to bring all the ID I would need to prove who I was to avoid any confusion. When I was next in line, I stepped up to the table, atop which sat a thick three-ring binder with a long list of local residents. Even though I was looking at the list upside down, the names were all in large print, with a check mark and a signature next to them if that person had already voted.

Voting stations at a common polling place

Voting stations at a common polling place

The poll attendant smiled at me.

“What’s your name?” She asked.

“Cole Ellenbogen,” I replied.

The woman thumbed through a few pages of the booklet, muttering “E, e,” as her index finger quickly passed over each name on the page. “Ah, there you are. Just sign here.”

I looked at her, startled: “That’s all? You don’t need to see my license, or-”

“No,” she shook her head, smiling again, “no need.” She turned the binder around on the table, and tapped my name with a ballpoint pen, which she then handed to me. I scribbled my signature, voted, and left.

My mind was absolutely blown. I voted in an election and showed less ID than I have to when I buy a lottery ticket. All you have to do to commit voter fraud is be able to read upside down, and pick a name off the list without a signature.

We need photo IDs to vote. The Federal Election Commission recommended it years ago, but the push to require identification is shot down time and time again by opponents who claim that requiring photo IDs is an attempt to stop minorities from voting. Is it really racist to require an ID?

Let’s take a look at the list of other things that you need an ID for that aren’t racist:

Board a plane, buy alcohol, buy cigarettes, enter a casino, play the lottery, open a bank account, apply for and receive welfare, apply for and receive food stamps, file for and receive unemployment, buy an M-rated video game, see an R-rated movie, buy a cellphone, sign for a cell phone contract, donate blood, buy certain types of cold medicine, pick up a prescription, buy a gun, apply for a hunting license, apply for a fishing license, to drive or buy or rent a car, get married, check into a hotel, adopt a pet, apply for a job, or get a permit to gather and hold a protest.

What’s different about having an ID for voting?

I’ll leave you with that. Now in the words of Nelson Mandela:

Nelson Mandela sporting his "Get an ID. Register. Vote." Shirt

Nelson Mandela sporting his “Get an ID. Register. Vote.” Shirt

-By Cole Ellenbogen

Legitimizing Violence

Arguably one of the most dishonest and annoying tactics employed by protestors, and media is trying to sell to completely dichotomous issues as a package deal. (I.E: if you agreed with the Ferguson Grand Jury, you think black lives don’t matter; if you support Israel, then you must hate palestinians… that sort of thing.)

The most recent of these “package deals” being pushed comes in the wake of the Eric Garner protests against the NYPD: If you’re angry about Eric Garner’s death, you must hate all police officers. The problem with this anti-cop rhetoric is that it’s being spread by influential figures like New York City Mayor de Blasio, cable news and political pundits.

Here’s the problem:  you can disagree with the way the police handle something without wanting to kill officers who are already risking their lives, but fanning the flames and trying to drum up resentment for the police allows groups of sick people to use the cause as a legitimate front for their hatred.

When we don’t rebuke hoards of people marching at “F*ck the Police” rallies, chanting, “What do we want? Dead Cops!” Eventually someone is going to make good on their threats. The recent murder of two NYPD officers had nothing to do with race and everything to do with a belligerent, hate-filled individual with a long criminal record killing two random officers because he thought public opinion was behind him.

The status posted by Ismaaiyl Brinsley before murdering two NYPD officers.

The status posted by Ismaaiyl Brinsley before murdering two NYPD officers.

To make matters worse,  he was right – in the wake of the shooting, many took to social media to celebrate the killings. Two wives lost their husband, a teenager lost his father. You don’t rejoice over someone’s murder because of their career choice, whether you agree with them or not.

The same thing happened this summer when a significant number of people sided with the known terrorist organization “Hamas,” while Gaza lobbed missiles at Israel and hid behind human shields. Enough people condemned Israel that actual anti-semites felt comfortable taking to the streets, assaulting Jews and looting their businesses.

Protestors need to stop spouting hateful slogans and encouraging violence – we do not want to go down this road. Having every police officer constantly fearful of being slaughtered by a wanna-be martyr nut job is probably not going to help race relations. I know that kind of stress would certainly put me on edge if I were working an already dangerous job.

To Review:

1. You thought some police officers were too tough before? Wait till you see how things go now that someone shot two of them, just because they don’t like cops. This probably isn’t going to do wonders for race relations either.

2. Saying that it is karma when someone kills one police officer because of something another police officer did, just because they’re both police officers follows the same logic as firing one accountant because another accountant majorly botched an expense report.

3. Everyone acts so tough until they need the police. Perfect example: the organizer of a “F*ck the police protest,” had her car stolen while she was off chanting for dead cops. Immediately after, she went to the police station, begging for help getting her car back. I’m sure the irony was lost on her.

4. Fanning the flames with hateful rhetoric legitimizes violence. It already happened in Europe during the Israel-Gaza conflict with rampant outbursts of anti-semitism. It happened again in New York city when the internet celebrated the deaths of two murdered police officers. Don’t escalate things any further.

5. And finally, because the heaps of ungrateful, damnable pro-cop-killers aren’t going to say it: bless the law enforcement, and all first responders, for protecting us every day – thank you for your hard work.

By Cole Ellenbogen.

White Christmas = White Power?

This post is going to be difficult for me to get through without swearing, so bear with me – I could’ve just as easily called this: SNOW IS RACIST, ALLEGES SOCIAL MEDIA.

I like country music. Everything from the feel of it, to the lyrics, it just always puts me in a good mood and makes me think of the summer time.

I also like Darius Rucker. I don’t know anything about his political stance on anything, and frankly I don’t care; he’s a musician and I like to compartmentalize. He sings a particularly good remake of wagon wheel, if that gives you a better idea of who he is.

Anyway, last night Darius Rucker performed a Christmas song at the Rockefeller Tree-Lighting in New York City, and was immediately blasted on social media for being racist and insensitive. I’m sure you can already guess which villainous song he was singing: “White Christmas.” Apparently, that is insensitive because of the recent grand jury decisions in both Ferguson, and NYC. See for yourself:

WARNING: THIS VIDEO IS NOT FOR THE EASILY OFFENDED; IT FEATURES AN AFRICAN AMERICAN COUNTRY MUSICIAN SINGING ABOUT HOW HE HOPES IT SNOWS THIS CHRISTMAS.

I understand that some people are upset with the Eric Garner case, but to consider just the color white to be racist is insane.

Does this mean that we shouldn’t whitewash buildings, use whiteout to correct writing mistakes, or talk about Walter White’s tragic life on Breaking Bad, until the protests have all ended? By that logic, power outages, thin, hard-to-see ice and my favorite kind of olives are ALL racist as well! (See also blackout, black ice and black olives.)

Darius Rucker should not be taking flack for singing one of the most popular Christmas songs of all time simply because it contains the word “white” and there happens to be a protest about the death of an African American occurring nearby.

I don’t know what’s worse: the fact that there are people out there who legitimately believe “White Christmas” is a racially charged and hateful song, or the fact that those people incorrectly used the word “ironic” to describe the situation. I know it doesn’t really relate to the story, but irony is not coincidence. Just figured I’d throw that in there.

Either way it looks like I have to stay inside for the rest of the winter so I don’t see any of that racist snow.

Give me a break.

By Cole Ellenbogen

Obama Makes Soap Opera Producer Ambassador

This one’s interesting. We all know that political favoritism happens, and campaign donors get appointed to positions of power, but this is absolutely ridiculous. The senate approved Colleen Brady Bell as the next ambassador to Hungary, which is on the verge of a government collapse, a neo-facist dictatorial takeover and a partnership with Putin.

Her only qualifications are bundling $800,000  for Obama’s 2012 election campaign, and of course, producing “The Bold and the Beautiful.”

The appointee is absolutely clueless, and failed to identify any of the strategic benefits of a friendship with Hungary. This appointment is dangerous, poorly timed, and blatant favoritism.

But the best part, as always, is watching Josh Ernst trying to explain everything away. Check it out:

By Cole Ellenbogen

The Blatant Unapologetic Dishonesty Surrounding Ferguson

I wasn’t planning on writing anything else about Ferguson – I already said my piece about the rioting – but on Monday I was reviewing for final exams when class was interrupted by protestors walking around the building, yelling about the Grand Jury’s decision not to indict officer Darren Wilson.

And then I thought about the blatant lies that are being used to perpetuate a certain narrative about what happened. These are the things that infuriate me about Ferguson:

“Hands up, Don’t Shoot!”

This is a slogan that protestors across the country have taken up, referring to the witness allegation that Mike Brown was shot while his hands were raised above his head in a sign of surrender. The official autopsy tears down this claim, as well as another lie being passed around by protestors that Brown was shot in the back as he fled.

To add to that point, the witnesses who told police that Brown was shot in the back, and that Darren Wilson stood over him and shot him again to finish him off were clearly trying to vilify Wilson, and cover for their friend. They should be arrested for obstruction of justice.

Rough sketch from the autopsy performed on Mike Brown

Rough sketch from the autopsy performed on Mike Brown

Yet protestors still use the slogan, “Hands up, don’t shoot,” in complete contradiction to the evidence. The St. Louis Rams players opened their most recent game against the Oakland Raiders with a “Hands up, don’t shoot,” protest, aggravating police who are working overtime to protect the stadium.

The fact that people are keeping up this huge lie on the national stage, simply because it gets attention and fits narrative they are trying to sell is disgraceful.

“Officer Darren Wilson Shot an Unarmed Teen”

You probably recognize this statement from the write in to almost every story covering Ferguson since August. It’s irresponsible to lead with that statement for two reasons. Firstly, teen is a deliberately misleading word choice: most people use “teen” to mean grade school age. Most people use “young adult” to mean high school age. At 18 years old, Brown was a legal adult. Painting him as a child to win sympathy is wrong.

Secondly, an unarmed person does not remain unarmed if they are trying to take someone else’s gun.

Publishing Officer Darren Wilson’s Address

Wanted poster offering $5,000 for Officer Darren Wilson's location, and $1,000 for each of his family members, posted by "protestors." Photo Credit: youngcons.com

Wanted poster offering $5,000 for Officer Darren Wilson’s location, and $1,000 for each of his family members, posted by “protestors.”
Photo Credit: youngcons.com

A gang in Ferguson put out a $5,000 bounty for Wilson’s address, and an additional $1,000 for each close family member. So it seems to me that publishing this information, when people are out for blood, is a grossly irresponsible thing to do. Yet the New York Times thought it would be appropriate. In doing so they put Darren Wilson and his family in danger.

The “Black Lives Matter,” Chant

Of course they do. All lives matter. I don’t hear anyone arguing they don’t.

My biggest issue with protestors who use this tactic is they are trying to change the parameters of the issue. It’s no longer about whether Officer Wilson acted in self defense – it devolves into, “If you disagree with us, you must think that black lives don’t matter.”

Here’s the thing: disagreeing with the Ferguson protestors does not mean I value the lives of one race more than another; it means I value forensic and physical evidence over conflicting and disproven witness testimony.

Do None of Them Have Jobs?

Someone will have to tell me what generous employer has given all those protestors and rioters four months off work. Protests are fine, but not when they interfere with the livelihood of other Americans. I believe this man sums it up best.

Tyree Landum was worried that he would loose his job when protestors blocking the highway, keeping him from getting to work. He has a right to be that mad.

Media Downplaying or Justifying the Rioting

While 10 businesses and a church burned to the ground in Ferguson, and more were looted, Time published a piece talking all about how rioting is actually pretty great. (Try telling that to the business owners who can’t feed their families because they lost everything.) They’re probably right, I’m sure those protestors really do mean well.

Totally unrelated note, here’s a video of Mike Brown’s stepfather yelling at the crowd to “Burn this B**** down:”

But again, probably totally good intentions.

Pro-tip, if you really want to convince the media that you’re looting because of how upset you are, you probably shouldn’t be smiling as you run out of the store with your stolen merchandise. Just a thought.

I’m Preparing For Finals

Sorry to be a little selfish here, but studying for finals is stressful; I don’t like exam week. I also don’t like being called a racist. That being said, I really don’t like being called a racist while I’m trying to study for exam week, by protestors who are marching around campus buildings in circles.

Please let the rest of us do our work in peace, and if you are going to protest, don’t lie. Thanks.

-By Cole Ellenbogen