Quote of the day—Rick Moran

Small-minded, even ignorant people see salvation in controlling the minds and lives of others. Is it a mass delusion that they believe they are actually “fighting racism,” that they’re doing this for white people’s own good? Or are these the same efforts at control that have been around since humans created civilizations?

Rick Moran
February 20, 2021
‘Critical Race Theory’ Costs a Brave Smith College Whistleblower Her Job
[There are alphas in most social animals so I expect the answer is that control of others has extremely deep genetic roots which go well beyond the first human civilizations.

And of course “racism” is just the current tool of choice in our country. In other times and places the tool was chosen to match a vulnerable target. Classic example from early in the 20th Century are Hitler with the Jewish (and other) people while Stalin had Trotsky, counter revolutionaries, capitalists, etc.

In the U.S., in addition to “racism”, some of the tools of control are “climate change”, “equality”, “social justice”, etc. And those tools are used against the political right. Don’t believe for a second it is actual racism they believe they are fighting. If that were the case you wouldn’t have people talking about multiracial Whiteness. Or claiming that asking students to show their work in class is “white supremacy”. These two examples are just the beginning of what is to come.

History is full of examples to provide hints as to how this may turn out. If the people who would be masters get their way, as they did in the USSR, the bar to pass the purity tests will continually raise. Even now things like the “master” branch in software version control, and “whitelists” and “blacklists” have come under attack. And non-trivial amounts of resources are being expended to satisfy the ever increasing demands of the power hungry.

Each victory for these people increases their thirst for more. They get a thrill from it. Even a “high”. They absolutely love it and in more candid moments admit this. Such people need to be stood up to because the end game is far worse then standing up to them now.

Here is one brave woman standing up:

If she can do it so can you.—Joe]

Quote of the day—1776 United

With HR127 being brought forward in early February of 2021, somebody tipped me off to a very small page where the phrase of the Second Amendment was being censored.  So we tried to replicate what we saw with an experiment. On Monday the 15th of February, First I posted a screenshot of the censored post, and it was fact-checked and censored behind the fact-check wall. Then I took a screenshot of the actual Second Amendment on Google and the same thing happened.

They were trying to tie it back to some misquoting of George Washington. They were saying the Second Amendment was fact-checked as not true.

1776 United
February 18, 2021
1776 United: Censoring the Second Amendment
[Emphasis added.

Perhaps, in their reality, it doesn’t actually exist. I’m okay with that. But their friends and relatives really should see that they get the help they need rather than letting them let them cause others harm when they are experiencing such delusions.—Joe]

Quote of the day—John Rubino

If you’re over 40 you’ve lived through at least three epic financial bubbles: junk bonds in the 1980s, tech stocks in the 1990s, and housing in the 2000s. Each was spectacular in its own way, and each threatened to take down the whole financial system when it burst.

But they pale next to what’s happening today. Where those past bubbles were sector-specific, which is to say the mania and resulting carnage occurred mostly within one asset class, today’s bubble is spread across, well, pretty much everything – hence the term “everything bubble.”

When this one pops there won’t be a lot of hiding places.

John Rubino
February 8, 2021
Is This The Biggest Financial Bubble Ever? Hell Yes It Is
[I wrote about complex systems and emergent behavior last night. Our financial markets are another example of emergent behavior. The rule sets are large and complex but behavior still emerges that some may claim can only be explained by a conspiracy. But, again, no conspiracy need exist.

There is a financial bubble about to pop. Simultaneously there is a growing mass delusion about the existence of millions of “extremists” who must be “canceled” or even killed. And there is a pandemic (real or imagined, it doesn’t matter much in the context here) that are all contributing to epic shear forces in our society.

Prepare accordingly. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.—Joe]

No conspiracy required

Lyle comments here that:

Clearly, you’re pointing to a conspiracy.

I was about to press the “Post Comment” button a couple times and kept thinking of something else I wanted to add. It became post material rather than comment material.

Study a little bit about complex systems and emergent behavior. A simple example is John Conway’s Game of Life. A very simple rule set (read the “Explanation”  on the web page) results in complex behavior and patterns. In addition to the default initial value click on three square in a row either vertical or horizontally and let than run.** The “rules of life” didn’t include explicit instructions for that pattern. Those patterns emerge from a very a simple rule set.

Or even think about a situation where a moderately large group of people (say a few thousand) are put on an unpopulated island and interact with each other with the simple rule of “do not intentionally inflict harm on others”. Or perhaps the slightly more complex rule set of The Ten Commandments.

Given the correct environment with sufficient readily available natural resources, won’t that group of people develop specialized skills, transportation systems, markets, entertainment, schools, etc.? And it will all happen without the need for any any “Master Planner” or “conspiracy” of the entire, or even a majority, of the people. Did that rule (or set of rules) include plans for some people to be farmers and others to be bakers and merchants? No. That behavior emerged from the simple rule or rules.

I claim that there exist a moderately large subset of people who enjoy, or at least get some sort of reward, from exerting power over others. Given the correct environment* that simple “rule” can result in the complex “cancel culture” and even genocidal behavior periodically emerging. No conspiracy required.


* I suspect a necessary component of the environment may be related to population size and perhaps population density. I suspect this because a certain amount of objectification is required. And with small group sizes objectification is difficult. Do we see tribes of a couple hundred people murder 10% of their own group? I don’t think so. I think the group size has to be in the thousands before that behavior sometimes emerges.

** A very cool one I just discovered is the following:

XXX
XXX
XXX

That is a cube with three on a side.

Quote of the day—Gad Saad @GadSaad

Religion is very comforting to people because it offers complete guidance about every aspect of one’s life from what to eat, whom to have sex with, to which exact minute to light a candle. Today, religion has been replaced by “loving omnipotent” governments that offer the same.

Gad Saad @GadSaad
Tweeted on February 3, 2021
[I see the wisdom in this assessment.

More importantly, I see the terrifying consequences of this development.

What I desire to see is a large majority of the people able to think for themselves, arrive at good decisions, execute on those decisions, and take responsibility for their actions.

I fear my desires are beyond the capacity of our current population and certainly beyond their current programming.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Cristina Beltrán

Rooted in America’s ugly history of white supremacy, indigenous dispossession and anti-blackness, multiracial whiteness is an ideology invested in the unequal distribution of land, wealth, power and privilege — a form of hierarchy in which the standing of one section of the population is premised on the debasement of others. Multiracial whiteness reflects an understanding of whiteness as a political color and not simply a racial identity — a discriminatory worldview in which feelings of freedom and belonging are produced through the persecution and dehumanization of others.

In the post-Trump era, the challenge will be to prevail over the extremism of Trump’s White majority while trying to prevent the politics of whiteness from becoming an increasingly multiracial affair.

Cristina Beltrán
January 15, 2021
To understand Trump’s support, we must think in terms of multiracial Whiteness
[See also what Ed Driscoll has to say about this.

Just as it was in the USSR there is an ever changing, ever increasing, level of purity required by the political left. Their creativity has no limits. The absurdity is applauded, not scorned, because it allows them to continue their programs of hate and destruction. The exercise of power intoxicates them and they will say and do whatever they must to feed and justify their addiction.

This is our future.

If gender doesn’t depend upon biology then what makes you think whiteness depends on skin color?

Try to keep up comrade. Be thankful that today it is just being doxed and deplatformed. Soon, if you don’t understand these things as they have been revealed, you will be spending time in a reeducation center having things such as this explained to you in much simpler terms.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Ellen Meister @EllenMeister

Every Republican now calling for unity is like the abusive husband who beats the shit out of his wife for 4 years, and then, when he’s finally arrested, says, “Baby, if you don’t press charges we can make this work.”

Ellen Meister @EllenMeister
Tweeted on January 9, 2021
[And this, my psychology students, is called “Projection”.

It has been the Democrats who I have been hearing calling for unity.

These people are evil, incredibly ignorant, and/or have severe mental issues.

The Democrats abuse of President Trump over the last four years, and now Republicans in general has been absolutely legendary. And now they want “unity” as they ban dissent, cause Trump supporters to get fired, and deplatform websites that allow the allow free speech?

Good luck with that guys. You’re going to need it.

One measurement of how unified they have made our country are the 10s of thousands of troops in D.C. we have for the inauguration.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Goodreads

Darkness at Noon stands as an unequaled fictional portrayal of the nightmare politics of our time. Its hero is an aging revolutionary, imprisoned and psychologically tortured by the Party to which he has dedicated his life. As the pressure to confess preposterous crimes increases, he relives a career that embodies the terrible ironies and human betrayals of a totalitarian movement masking itself as an instrument of deliverance. Almost unbearably vivid in its depiction of one man’s solitary agony, it asks questions about ends and means that have relevance not only for the past but for the perilous present. It is —- as the Times Literary Supplement has declared —- “A remarkable book, a grimly fascinating interpretation of the logic of the Russian Revolution, indeed of all revolutionary dictatorships, and at the same time a tense and subtly intellectualized drama.”

Goodreads
Darkness at Noon
[I finished listening to this book last Saturday. It was haunting.

If you think Gulag Archipelago, Nineteen Eighty Four, and Animal Farm have something important to say you will find Darkness at Noon at or near the top of that list in the same genre.

It’s a novel, first published in 1940, but it was based on interviews with numerous real people within the USSR during the 1920s and 1930s. The main character is a composite of several real people.

There were a couple of things which really jarred me. One was there was a time, early on during the purges, that political criminals were arrested and sent to prisons which were more like resorts of beautiful gardens and lawns where they could be counseled about their errors of their ways. These “prisons” had better living conditions than the environments most of prisoners came from. This reminded me of Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler thinking that if he just talked to the rioters they would see the error of their ways, and the similar beliefs of the people behind the “defund the police” movement. Apparently the socialist mind cannot, at least initially, comprehend that people could be opposed to implementing the socialist utopia. The alternative is for me to believe the people of today, instead of independently arriving at the same mindset, have a playbook/script they are following and haven’t read the complete book yet to see how it’s really done.

The other thing that really stuck with me was how they got confessions. The confessions came from interrogations which lasted several days or even a month. The prisoner was confronted with evidence that was mostly true but the interpretation was twisted in some way that perhaps didn’t matter all that much in the present context. After sleep deprivation and hours of grilling the prisoner would sign the confession of the slightly twisted interpretation. Then a new piece of evidence would be presented. Again it would be twisted in the same direction as the previous evidence the prisoner had already signed off on. Eventually they would sign off on that one too. The process would continue like this until a complete narrative leading to the conclusion that the prisoner was such of a mindset that it was obvious they could not have had any other motive than the assassination of “Number 1” when they briefly spoke to the cook at the café where “Number 1” was to get his food a week later.

And, of course, as I have pointed out before, the every tightening of the purity tests that made a loyal, decorated, party member on one day into a saboteur the next week.

Today in our country, the mindset of the political left is racing down the same path as Russia of just over 100 years ago. They may believe they are “progressives” leading the world to new utopia, but that belief and mindset is a regression to that of the turn of the 20th century on a different continent. And, again, the destination is not utopia. It is dystopian nightmare of terror.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Curtis Yarvin

Also, there was a tiny bit of violence. Tell me again about how much you hate violence. Neighbor, after 2020, I am all ears on that one.

Curtis Yarvin
January 8, 2021
The great coup of 2021
[It’s a bit long but I thought he did a good job of summarizing the different sides of the situation with a good bit of psychology.—Joe]

Ghosts of the Constitution, past, present, and future

Yesterday I posed this quote from someone:

The constitution is the conservative equivalent of a gun-free zone.

I followed up with this deliberately very open ended question:

Now, can we use that insight and turn it into what needs to be done next?

The comments indicated everyone took a much narrower view of things than I had. One even took bizarre break from reality saying that my post meant I, “decided to go full-on Brownshirt/Blackshirt/Silvershirt” regarding the election. What? I wasn’t even talking about the election. How did they get there? Did they think they were able to read my mind through the Internet? That was really weird.

Here is what actually happened.

When I read the quote it was like first few nanoseconds of the big bang. Out of nothing there exploded a whole universe. It was like how some people describe their first LSD experience. I’ve never used LSD so I wouldn’t know for certain but that is my best analogy for how it affected me.

There were three comments (here, here, and here) which accurately touched an extremely small fraction of that universe that I saw unfold. And it was all about the past and the present. I was hoping for something more about the future as I was pretty sure I had explored enough of the past and present and satisfied myself that there wasn’t a whole lot more to be learned from those domains. I could be wrong about that so I present that part of my expanding universe for comments, corrections, and additional observations.

But what I really want is for people to think about and suggest a solution to the problem that can be implemented in the near future.

The Past

The authors of the constitution could have set up a separate branch of government which had the job of enforcing the adherence to the original intent. If not this then at least explicitly given the Federal courts some independent enforcement capability and protection from court packing. This may not have been practical or even possible but an attempt in this direction might have made some difference.

This attempts to address the issue, as McChuck, in the comments said, “The Constitution failed because it had no “OR ELSE” clause.”

At numerous critical times there were fairly clear cut issues before the courts which probably, at least a simple majority of people decided the Constitution was inadequate for the present circumstances. And rather than go the long route and get an amendment to the constitution through the process the courts allowed a short cut. This short cut was then used for things not nearly so clear cut. The short cut became a super highway with no restrictions.

I haven’t done the research but a couple very early, reasonably well known examples of such “clear cut issues” were the Lewis and Clark expedition and the Louisiana Purchase. Where does the constitution allow that in it’s enumerated powers?

There are probably hundreds if not thousands of case where little short cuts were taken over the centuries and they enabled all kinds of criminal trespass on the constitution.

What if, instead of politicians and judges instead of giving these short cuts a blind eye, they had handled it differently? What if they had said, “I think this is a good idea. I think this is within to domain of proper government power. BUT, it is also outside of the powers granted to the government”? Let’s, as rapidly as is practical, push through a narrowly scoped constitutional amendment to address this “clear cut issue”. This would have at least attempted to prevent the short cut from becoming a superhighway.

But the politicians of the time didn’t see, didn’t care, or wanted the superhighway and neither of those things happened.

The Present

The U.S. government debt is almost $28 trillion with $159 trillion in unfunded liabilities and constantly going up. Had the original intent of the U.S. constitution been adhered to that could not have happened. The superhighway of criminal trespass on the constitution is is a superhighway to disaster.

The criminal trespass on our personal liberties are just as gargantuan as the economic disaster. The First, Second, and Fourth enumerated rights in the Bill of Rights may have the most lanes of the superhighway over them but all of them, with the possible exception of the Third Amendment, have been paved over with at least a bike path clearly marked where there was once a tall fence with no gate and a NO TRESPASSING sign on it.

People who believe the constitution should be respected according to original intent started talking with each other. The Internet made it far easier to connect with others of a similar mindset. They realize, “Not only is the government infringing upon our rights, the courts aren’t coming to our aid.”

The criminals see the Internet chatter and see erosion of their voting base as more people come up to speed on the situation. The criminals shadow ban people. They freeze their accounts for a day or a week. Then they start completely banning people.

This couple was completely banned by Facebook and they have little* to no idea what it was about. A few weeks later they were both banned within minutes of each other from Instagram. All they posted on Instagram were family pictures. No explain was given. No appeal was possible.

Other people have received some clues. And it’s over the tiniest of stuff:

They are making every post of mine with #DontCaliforniaMyTexas as hate speech and deleting it. I got one day in jail for it

In the last week it was the President of the United States who permanently banned from Twitter. Shortly after POTUS moved to Parler, Apple, Google, and Amazon in a matter of just a few days deplatformed their apps and then the entire site. Poof! Gone! The company is possibly permanently destroyed.

Yesterday morning AR15.com was booted from GoDaddy (see also here). They are now back up on AWS Amazon. I wonder how long that will last as AWS Amazon was the host for Parler.

The political left is saying, “It’s time..” and “Cleansing the movement…” is next.

“Maybe they are being hyper sensitive to people of any political persuasion”, you suggest. It doesn’t look like that to me and others:

Big Tech did not remove House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s accounts when she called for “uprisings” against the Trump administration. Facebook and Twitter did not target Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez when she claimed that allegedly marginalized groups have “no choice but to riot.” These platforms did not act against Kamala Harris when she said the riots “should not” stop.

This week, Joe Biden condemned the Capitol rioters, saying, “What we witnessed yesterday was not dissent, it was not disorder, it was not protest. It was chaos. They weren’t protesters, don’t dare call them protesters. They were a riotous mob, insurrectionists, domestic terrorists. It’s that basic, it’s that simple.”

Yet he refused to speak in those terms when Black Lives Matter and antifa militants were throwing Molotov cocktails at federal buildings, setting up “autonomous zones,” and burning down cities. Instead, he condemned Trump for holding up a Bible at a church — without mentioning the fact that that very church had been set on fire the night before.

What makes you think it will end with social media? What if the political left pulls your Internet connection for some flimsy excuse, or none at all? You think that would be going too far because Internet is essentially a requirement of life these days? Really? You think that would stop them? Do you think I am extrapolating way out into never-never land? “That can’t happen here?”

What if banks refused to do business with you. Wouldn’t that be worse than pulling your Internet connection? Guess what…The Obama administration was telling banks, “If you do business with risky customers, such as gun manufactures or dealers, you will suffer the consequences.” It was called Operation Choke Point.

What about other services such as FedEx, UPS, USPS, your water, waste disposal, and electricity? They didn’t “censor” you, you can still print a newsletter or hold a sign up on the street corner, right? And as long as it wasn’t a government entity refusing you service it’s entirely legit, right?

It used to be motels, restaurants, gasoline stations, etc. could, and did, refuse service to people based on their own criteria. There was a Federal law passed which prohibited such discrimination when it was based on the grounds of “race, color, religion, or national origin.” But it doesn’t protect you if you happen to be one of those nasty people who believe the constitution means what it says.

Do not be surprised if there aren’t soon “blacklists” that result in a surprising number of restrictions on what we normally consider public services. Don’t think so? Today Senator Chuck Schumer called for authorities to add the Capitol rioters to a national no-fly list.

The net result of this? Individual constitutionalists are, metaphorically, standing on some random street corner holding up homemade signs saying, “Repent! The End is Near!” Thousands of criminals occasionally glance at the “Gun-free zone” sign as they zoom by on the nearby superhighway at 100+ MPH and snicker.

The comparisons to the early days of what is described in Gulag Archipelago are eerie. Have a chat with someone with Venezuela, or East Germany sometime.

The Future

This is where I was/am hoping to get some discussion. How can we regain a limited government and our personal liberties?

An armed rebellion? Maybe. But I’m not seeing that as a high probability path. I could see that bringing down the government. But I don’t see that as necessarily building a consensus for the resurrections of limited government rising from the ashes. And your going to start your own cancel culture with a scoped rifle? And how does that work out? You shoot every politician with a ‘D’ beside their name? Then what? Hold another election with the same people voting (and/or cheating) as last time?

And at what point to you start shooting? Are you justified in shooting if you get booted off Facebook or Twitter? And who would you shoot if you somehow managed to convince yourself it was justified? Who do you shoot if some anonymous bureaucrat told your bank to stop doing business with you?

What’s the path to victory here? I am a details oriented guy and as I dig into the details I’m not seeing a viable path.

There is the Lyle option, as I like to think of it. A (supposed) return to Protestant values. This is, perhaps, due to the Second Coming—this isn’t entirely clear to me. I largely dismiss this, not just because I don’t believe in the existence of god(s) but because if the constitution was originally divinely inspired then why did it go so terrible wrong and how can we expect to be better the second time around?

The best I have been able to come up with is that we are probably headed for a Minsky Moment and/or a currency crisis in the somewhat near future. This could be a worldwide event and it could involve the collapse of our currency and perhaps our government. Perhaps out of the ashes of the collapse a more constrained government will have more appeal and will rise.

I see this second option as more probable of success, but still improbable, because the government size proved to be its own downfall rather than being brought down by individualist rebels. Clear and positive proof of big government failure is probably required to convince a majority of people to try small government again.

What I don’t see is a high probability of success path that can be traversed by a few people on the street corners with their handmade signs.

Please discuss.


* Barron recently told me, “I may have been tagged because I didn’t use the complete spelling of my last name.” Yet I know people who have been using completely, and pretty obviously, fake names for their Facebook accounts for years.

Quote of the day—Tucker Carlson

Listen to us”, scream the population.

“Shut up and do what you’re told”, reply their leaders.

In the face of dissent the first instinct of illegitimate leadership is to crack down on the population. But crackdowns never make it better.

Instead they always make the country more volatile and more dangerous.

The people in charge rarely understand that. They don’t want to. They don’t care to learn or listen because all this conversation is a referendum on them and their leadership.

So they clamp down harder. “Obey I tell you! Obey!

This is the Romanov program. It ends badly. Every. Single. Time. But that doesn’t mean they wont’ try it again. Of course they will. Because it’s their nature. It’s how we got here in the first place.

Millions of Americans sincerely believe the last election was fake. You can dismiss them as crazy. You can call them conspiracy theorists. You can kick them off Twitter.

But that won’t change their minds.

Rather than trying to change their minds, to convince them and reassure them the system is real, that democracy works, as you would do if you cared about the country or the people who live here, our new leaders will try to silence them. What happened today will be used by the people taking power to justify stripping you of the rights you were born with as an American. Your right to speak without being censored. Your right to assemble. To not be spied upon. To make a living. To defend your family, most critically. These are the most basic and ancient freedoms that we have.

When thousands of your countrymen storm the capital building you don’t have to like it. We don’t. You can be horrified by the violence, as we said and we’ll say it again, we are horrified. It’s wrong. But if you don’t bother to pause and learn a single thing from it. From your citizens storming your capital building? Then you’re a fool.

You lack wisdom and you lack self-awareness. You have no place running a country.

We got to this sad chaotic day for a reason. It is not your fault. It is their fault.

Tucker Calson
January 6, 2021
Tucker: Our only option is to fix what’s causing this.

[You could nitpick a few things but overall he did a good job of describing the current situation and matching what I think the near future will bring.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Casey Newton

Yesterday, I wrote about the sense that the fracture in our shared sense of reality seems to be accelerating. I asked whether platforms ought to take it as a moral responsibility to reverse that divide — and, if so, how. Today, I advocate for one smaller but still difficult and essential step in that direction.

It’s time for Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube to remove Trump.

Casey Newton
January 6, 2021
IT’S TIME TO DEPLATFORM TRUMP
[Note: I original scheduled this for next Tuesday as I had some other content I thought was of higher priority. Things are obviously happening much faster than I expected.


LOL.

That is so totally ignorant of human, and particularly U.S., psychology that it is hilariously funny.

Deplatforming is a relatively easy obstacle to overcome by someone with Trump’s stature. Even if every platform in the country succumbed to the rage mob he could rent a server, in a different country if necessary, and start his own blog. Individuals will post his material on Facebook and other sites with minor obfuscation to defeat the attempts at automated blockage.

If they block his site at the border encrypted VPN’s will bring his material in. Make it a crime to distribute his material and it will be distributed in a way that makes it attributable to tyrannical politicians.

It will be a fun game! I almost look forward to it.

The attempt at blocking him will make him all the more widely read. And all the time he will be mocking those who tried to silence him.

And that gives Newton a pass, assuming they actually believed what they wrote, on the stupidity of believing an attempt at silencing someone admired by millions is going to bring unity and tranquility. Trump is popular because he expresses a view shared by those millions. It seems the political left believes he created mindless followers. It’s probably more correct to say the masses created Trump.

As Michael Malice said the other day, “They thought Trump was the river but he was the dam.”:

I am of the opinion that if your goal is freedom then having your political enemies rapidly becoming tyrants furthers your long term goal more than hurts it.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Pam Belluck

A small number of Covid patients who had never experienced mental health problems are developing severe psychotic symptoms weeks after contracting the coronavirus.

Pam Belluck
December 28, 2020
Small Number of Covid Patients Develop Severe Psychotic Symptoms
[That’s scary stuff.

I know three people who have recovered from COVID. One was daughter Xenia.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Sherry Bodin

There is no doubt in my mind that President Trump was appointed by God to clean up all the corruption that we have endured throughout the United States of America for the past 40 to 50 years. President Trump offers hope for us all, so we, our children and grandchildren will live better lives once the corruption is cleaned up. We will then endure a more peaceful, loving and kind world.

Sherry Bodin
November 16, 2020
Comment to:

[Video link via brother Doug.

I have a strong interest in psychology. I took a bunch of psych classes in college and I think I got straight A’s on them. I find the whole Trump as president thing extremely interesting. We have such an extreme division in this country about his character. From “racist, fascist, criminal, and all supporters and enablers must be ‘dealt with’ so our country can heal” to “appointed by God”.

How can two sets of people, all working with access to the same dataset, arrive at such different conclusions? Some, perhaps even most, are living in an alternate universes.

Reality is really, really tough. I get that. But still, it’s such a wide range of reactions that I find it difficult to imagine that I could intentionally create a data set such that some group of people could examine the data and divide into such an extreme range of opinions on what the data means.

If it weren’t for the deadly seriousness of our situation I would stock up on popcorn. Then, every night I would sit down with a full bowl and have myself a good laugh at the absurdity of human nature.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Angelo Codevilla

I noted that this revolution’s logic leads to no logical end. That is because “the logic that drives each turn of our revolutionary spiral is Progressive Americans’ inherently insatiable desire to exercise their superiority over those they deem inferior.” Its force, I observed, “comes not from the substance of the Progressives’ demands,” but rather “from that which moves, changes, and multiplies their demands without end. That is the Progressives’ affirmation of superior worth, to be pursued by exercising dominance: superior identity affirmed via the inferior’s humiliation.” Affirmation of one’s own superiority by punishing inferiors is an addictive pleasure. It requires ever stronger, purer doses of infliction, and is inherently beyond satisfaction.

Angelo Codevilla
September 23, 2020
Revolution 2020
[Via Kevin.

As Codevilla pointed out this is a Stalinist revolution because of the top down nature of it. And as he points out here, “Affirmation of one’s own superiority by punishing inferiors is an addictive pleasure.” There is a deadly psychology here which I have described before.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Glenn Greenwald

American media is gripped in a polarized culture war that is forcing journalism to conform to tribal, groupthink narratives that are often divorced from the truth and cater to perspectives that are not reflective of the broader public but instead a minority of hyper-partisan elites. The need to conform to highly restrictive, artificial cultural narratives and partisan identities has created a repressive and illiberal environment in which vast swaths of news and reporting either do not happen or are presented through the most skewed and reality-detached lens.

With nearly all major media institutions captured to some degree by this dynamic, a deep need exists for media that is untethered and free to transgress the boundaries of this polarized culture war and address a demand from a public that is starved for media that doesn’t play for a side but instead pursues lines of reporting, thought, and inquiry wherever they lead, without fear of violating cultural pieties or elite orthodoxies.

Glenn Greenwald
October 29, 2020
My Resignation From The Intercept
[We are in the midst of a mass delusion about the political reality of our country. When those suffering from this delusion are confronted with the evidence their delusion they attempt to suppress that evidence and those that present it.

Greenwald is taking a courageous but difficult path. Correctly perceiving reality is an extremely tough problem yet it appears Greenwald knows the path to the truth. He is going down that path even though those suffering from the mass delusion are putting formidable obstacles in his way.

Even though the path is difficult we should remember that no matter how many people insist on the validity of a falsehood, reality always triumphs in the end.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Vanessa Grigoriadis @vanessagrigor

My brain has left the building and all I have is the reactive mind

Vanessa Grigoriadis @vanessagrigor
Tweeted on September 22, 2020
[I wish more people were this self-aware and recused themselves from public debate and voting until they have recovered. The political climate would be dramatically different and far better.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Mollie @MZHemingway

The terrifying mob has moved to the book burning phase.

Mollie @MZHemingway
Tweeted on June 6, 2020
[This was in reference The “decolonize your bookshelf” stuff in the QOTD from yesterday.

Also related is the QOTD of Christian Johann Heinrich Heine

Where they have burned books, they will end in burning human beings.

Read the previous link for more thoughts on why this conclusion is more than a coincidence.—Joe]

Quote of the day—William Taylor @BillT

Don’t overlook the fact that those that are stealing stuff and making the excuse that it’s justified because of some perceived repression won’t hesitate to make the leap that it is alright to take your life for the very same reasons.

William Taylor @BillT
Tooted on August 17, 2020
[See also yesterday’s QOTD.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Terri Conley

If you inch towards suggesting that people who do something other than monogamy might not be miserable or that they might have some advantages, they were just so hostile to that. I found that really fascinating.

Terri Conley
August 4, 2020
How One Psychologist Upended Everything We Know About Women, Sex, & Monogamy
[As well as being fascinating I think making people uncomfortable with clear factual data is great fun! I love doing it with the stupidity of gun laws as well as human psychology.—Joe]