The Opposite of Creative

The opposite of creation is not destruction. Destruction, however much easier than creation, however much detrimental to society and to self is at least an action: you do something.

The opposite of creation is a sort of sterile, puzzled nothingness.

I’ve been observing this lately among the Social Justice Warriors (and btw, you should totally follow that link and read that article.) They acclaim a certain type of “art” (for lack of a better word) which is not even the type of creativity you see in school kids where they say take two comics, mash them together, and think they have created something new and Earthshattering.

That is the creativity of the naïve and inexperienced. No, the SJWs “create” by regurgitating onto the page things they read elsewhere and have been told are examples of right think or right positioning. Which is why their works feel beyond boring, sterile, castrated somehow, as if some piece of essential humanity is missing.

I’ve met this sort of “creativity” before.

I’m not going to run down my country of origin. It did pretty well in poetry. I liked Camoes, but that was because it was a requirement and also, I think, because I didn’t know very much of Roman poetry at the time (I suspect it’s rather derivative.) And I liked Fernando Pessoa. And I liked Eurico de Sa (though I liked him as a teen and wonder how it would have ported into my adult self.)

All of those are, of course, post renaissance, and in my opinion Camoes (the Lusiades) suffers from a constriction of imagination.

Part of this is that even into the nineteenth century the country had “accepted modes of thought” (it might still for all I know, but I doubt now they’re religion based.) There were things that were simply unthinkable without offending the majority of the “right thinking” Catholic-brought-up population.

Someone or other in a book I was reading said that Portugal was more Catholic and more authoritarian about it than practically any other country (except maybe Spain) because it had a high number of Carthaginians in its ancestry and those were total fanatics.

This is possible. I don’t know. What I know is this: when people here tell me to write “authentically Portuguese” fantasy and not elves and dwarves and what not, they don’t realize the level to which a religion of exclusivity (not Catholicism, per se. It didn’t do it in Italy or in most of the rest of Europe, but Catholicism the Portuguese way) scoured the imaginative landscape clean of all other elements.

I presume at some point the North had Celtic folklore, because it was part of the Celtic commonwealth. And all of the country, most definitely, had Roman myth.

It’s just that even in the twentieth century the idea of a Portuguese Tolkien was unthinkable. And while the Lusiades had symbolical Roman myth, it was almost self-consciously symbolic and imitative.

I’ll say right now I’ve been away from the country for a long time, and it’s entirely possible that other authors from the times I’m referring to have been discovered and that they were more imaginative. What I know though is that even our equivalent of the Grim fairy tales, collected from the people, are devoid of any supernatural beings but Saints. The scouring of the intellectual/emotional/mental landscape of the country was very complete.

And from what I can gather, looking back, it wasn’t what the civil authorities forbid, (though there was that too) but that the culture had made certain things unthinkable. You couldn’t think of them and remain part of the group.

I suspect the same thing is what happened in the Soviet Union under communism, and why they are having so much trouble rebuilding a civil society without recourse to authoritarian, soviet-like structures.

I’ve talked to people even in lighter socialist countries, like Sweden, who can’t seem to conceive of a non-socialist representative society. If I tell them their system sucks (It does, no matter what progressives say. It makes individual initiative and entrepeneurship impossible, to say nothing of somehow destroying the race’s impulse to procreate. In a connected world, too, it also attracts the kind of migrants who don’t share the culture and who simply want to mooch of it) they instinctively, without thought, go back and compare what they have to what they had when monarchy was absolute in the middle ages. Despite examples in the rest of the world, the idea of representative government without socialism is literally unthinkable. Their schooling has made some thoughts things that can’t be thought.

In the old traditional publishing they could hem us in in the same way. I knew if I wrote even something so innocuous as a communist villain and a good businessman in the same story, I’d never sell it. Ever. It was unthinkable.

I think a lot of these systems become this way and make certain thoughts unthinkable because they’re so certain of themselves, and because what was there before was so much more horrible.

I’m fairly sure that Catholicism in Portugal became absolutist to scour the public mind of Muslim thought with its myriad of genii and spirits. Anyone who has seen Roman ruins in Portugal and sees that for all the centuries of occupation the locals, secretly, buried their dead in the ruins of the church (because it was the only consecrated ground left) can doubt there was Muslim oppression and that the backlash against it was horrific.

Hence the backlash against the horrible becomes the totalitarian thought of the future.

But there is also, undoubtedly, a different reason for totalitarian thought, and that is when the past was better, and when your regime/thought/ruling doesn’t work very well at all.

If we look carefully that’s what FDR did by maligning his predecessors and enshrining the New deal. It was also attempted with varying degrees of success when Clinton took over after the elder Bush. Seizing the opportunity presented by a minor dip in the market, (amplified by news reports of the misery it inflicted on the nation. Ah, if they did those reports now!) they started proclaiming that “trickle down economics” didn’t work and that the new soft socialism would.

It didn’t. Not really. It inflated stock market bubbles with government money and let Friends of Bill get away with murder, which was then used to advance the “all business is corrupt” narrative. (Also no one in the Reagan administration ever used “trickle down” they used “supply side”. Also, anyone who lived through both administrations, let along those of GWB and Obama, knows that whatever the heck Reagan did WORKED.)

However, in the news and the media, saying what Reagan had done had improved the economy was literally unthinkable. Even when some of us remembered it.

But mostly – mostly – I find these… ideologies of exclusion that make everything out of them unthinkable exist not in backlash or on purpose to erase something, but because they are fataly flawed internally and if people were aware of a different slant or looked at them with fresh eyes, they’d find the flaws.

This is the case with a certain type of religion (Islam, mostly, in most parts of the world) but also with all the pseudo-religions of the left. Yep, all of them. Environmentalist, socialism, feminism, and that bizarre blend that’s the Social Justice Warrior.

They’re besieged all about and hemmed in with “this you can’t read” and “this you can’t look at” and “this you can’t think” and they call this being enlightened and free-thinkers. And they don’t have enough critical thought faculties left to laugh when they say it.

For instance one of the SJWs in my field was congratulating herself not long ago for not having a bookstore near her that carried books that weren’t written by SJWs and therefore never having been exposed to “bad think.” Because…

I mean, if those thoughts are self-obviously bad and wrong, she could read them and find rational reasons to reject them, right?

But the truth is she couldn’t. She has no logic as a defense for adopting the positions she does, or avoiding the opposite. She just thinks what she’s told to, and avoids what she’s told to.

Because “wrong think” could destroy the entire construction of what she believes. (Shouldn’t be difficult. It’s internally contradictory. Say, for instance, how do you deal with a woman’s right to choose when a woman chooses to abort all female children. Why you scream about her false consciousness and tell her she’s a subconscious victim of the patriarchy and then you stop her choosing. But then how do you face the fact you stopped her choosing? You don’t. You made her choose right for her own good. Yes, okay, but how are you different from those who say that abortion is harmful to the mother and to society and she should choose life for her own good? You’re not, save for thinking “right thoughts” and holding on to the sanctioned opinions. Just like a medieval peasant in a theocracy, right?)

This type of rigid thought structure is bad, I think, for all professions and all jobs (and thus, ultimately for society.) You can be a decent cobbler, but not an incredibly innovative one, if your entire training is to be afraid to stray outside safe-thoughts.

But it is death for the arts. It just is. You can’t create if you don’t have access to the full panoply of human thoughts and imaginings, at least in the symbolic sense.

None of us – I think – believes in fairies or unicorns, but bringing a fairy or unicorn in to a story is useful to create a certain situation, and humans in that situation are also interesting.

Social justice warriors should be able to imagine a bad woman in power. If women are fully human, they can be bad, without their evil being the result of oppressive patriarchy. But they can’t. They can’t think “badthink.” That would bring into question the entire idea of female supremacy, let alone the idea that men and women are exactly alike but men are worse. In the same sense they can’t, say, write a futuristic story in which someone creates a true hermaphrodite race, because that would make them question that men and women are already alike form the neck up. (Oh, wait, they COULD write that, but it would be all about sex and “consent” and nonsense externalities, not how their thought would be different IN ITSELF from other humans and how THAT would affect the culture, which is where the real creativity lies.)

Their alternate history, likewise, tends to devolve into either revenge plots against those they view as oppressors, or puerile utopias. It is beyond them to create something like the Grimnoir Chronicles, in which the unthinkable happens and the world changes in unthinkable and yet utterly realistic ways.

And this is why when you’re reading their stuff you tend to feel you read it all before and Ursula Le Guinn at her worst did it better.

This is why they default to accusing anyone who is not bound by SJW thought of not wanting women in science fiction, as though objecting to a gynotheocracy were the same as not wanting them to participate. This is why they think allowing people who disagree with them to publish is the equivalent of shutting them up. Because they can’t – simply can’t – coexist in a world that allows other forms of thought.

Which is too bad, because with indie, it’s gone beyond Baen and they are most certainly have to face the fact that some people out there don’t read, write, or play games like they do. No one is going to force them to appreciate the other side, but no one is going to shut the other side to please them and make them feel “secure” either. (And btw, that’s where the whole not feeling safe comes from. They’re not afraid the “wrong-thinkers” will attack them. Only that these people will say things that question their belief system. A totalitarian, exclusivist belief system can’t tolerate being confronted by different thoughts. It feels like an attack and like you’re falling apart. Hence the fears aimed at nice, polite, decent men like Brad Torgersen. If you think of their claustrophobic, limited mind-space it makes PERFECT sense. This is why they need “safe” rooms, too, to get away from divergent thought and divergent people. All while proclaiming diversity, which would be funny if it weren’t so sad.)

They’re going to have to adapt or be marginalized.

Now, if we can come up with a way to make decent, professional indie movies, perhaps we can get away from the present Hollywood phase where the height of creativity is to redo superheroes (cartoonish to being with) as female, because, you know, that makes it totally better. Even when it doesn’t.

As for the SJWs, yep, they still have access to the megaphones of the culture. But those are drying up. The publishers are losing their money, and as TV and movies sign on to their properties my guess is that what will happen there is what happened to literature SF. You can’t make people consume what they don’t like. Not for entertainment. They’ll just go elsewhere.

And then the money dries up there too.

The lack of creativity that comes with their sterile, binding set of dogmatic beliefs doesn’t even allow them to destroy INTERESTINGLY.  These exclusive thought-modes can’t exist in a truly pluralistic environment and the environment that’s emerging in the arts is pluralistic to the point of chaos.

Thought will move past them and elsewhere.

Creativity will return, and with tech change, there’s a good chance it will be freed up in ways we can only imagine. (But they can’t.)

A brilliant new renaissance is over the horizon.

In the end, we win, they lose.

Be not afraid.




370 thoughts on “The Opposite of Creative

                1. For sure. Decaf is a deceiver, promising the caffeinated goodness but delivering only exhausted evil.

                  1. Then I am exhausted evil ’cause caffeine gives me migraines. It sucks. Although I do get to take good drugs…it ain’t worth it.

                    1. Being denied the holy caffeinated goodness is a heavy weight to bear.
                      I have the opposite reaction. If I don’t get my coffee I develop migraines and all the fun that goes along with it.

                    1. I once saw a man scrape out the coffee urn in the goat locker. “He was never heard from again.” If’n you know what I mean.

              1. It is by caffeine alone that I set my mind in motion
                It is by the beans of Java that my thoughts acquire speed
                The hands acquire shaking
                The shaking serves as a warning.

                From alt.sysadmin.recovery

  1. “btw, you should totally follow that link and read that article”

    I see no link.

    But bravo. I applauded when I finished reading this one. Well done! 🙂

  2. I’ve been observing this lately among the Social Justice Warriors (and btw, you should totally follow that link and read that article.)

    Umm . . . was there supposed to be a link there? 😕

    Yes, I think we will win in the end, but right at the moment, we’re not near the end. I’m not entirely sure we’ve reached the middle yet.

    As C.S. Lewis said, it’s a long story, and we aren’t always the most attentive readers.

      1. No, The Beautiful Space Princess of the Evil League of Evil is evil, not terrible. Get it right. Jeez, it’s like herding cats with you people sometimes.

      2. The link is possibly the best explanation of the whole sorry SJW phenomenon I’ve read thus far.

      3. I will note that, having gotten to the story long after I opened the page, I refreshed the page before commenting on the missing link (hey, waitaminnit! My wife say’s I’m the missing link!), and sure enough, there it was. 🙂

  3. To give credit where credit is due, Hollywood isn’t changing Thor into a woman, that’s Marvel itself. [Sad Smile]

          1. It does make one wonder exactly what standards Mjolnir uses to judge worth. Cap has displayed a willingness to lay down his life on more than one occasion, and that’s the action the made Thor worthy again after Odin exiled him.

      1. What annoys me about this is the revisionism. Cap has picked it up and carried it before in the comics. If anything, Cap is MORE worthy than Thor to carry it. It’s one of the reasons a person who believes he is a god, follows orders from a mere mortal.

        1. I don’t think I’ve ever seen one of those issues, though it makes sense. My guess (if they’re trying to be logical) is that in this case he wasn’t worthy because he was just going along with the joke, rather than trying to pick the hammer up for a noble reason.

          1. So when Captian America is being the undiluted Cap, seeing what NEEDS to be done and throwing himself body and soul into the line of fire to get it done, it’s no problem?

            Works for me. I vaguely remember that some villain or other made it so the hammer didn’t cooperate by infuriating someone who’d been able to pick it up a minute before, but then they were doing it for unworthy reasons…..

            1. Another possibility that a friend of mine suggested is that Cap, noticing the wobble, realized he probably *could* lift the hammer, but didn’t want the complications that could arise if he did, so he intentionally faked his attempt.

              1. Considering it further– the Cap is a military leader. He knows that the point of the “game” is for Thor to brag about his cool toy a bit… and half of the rest of the team has already tried.

                If he picks up that hammer, the game just got rubbed in Thor’s face with a vengeance, and he just additionally embarrassed Tony by doing what two of his best toys couldn’t manage. IE, BOTH of the most prickly people got slapped in the face, publicly, right off the bat.

                He doesn’t want to hurt his guys, and it doesn’t matter if Cap can pick up the hammer right now or not.

                That said, I’m pretty sure we all know that this is a giant, flashing FORESHADOWING, right?

          2. C’mon — it’s a Norse hammer! It doesn’t get jokes much subtler than a punch in the nose.

      1. Well, Marvel had created separate female versions of some of their male characters. At the time it was to avoid some other comic company from “cashing in” on their characters. For example, Marvel created She-Hulk to avoid somebody else creating a female version of Hulk and they created Spiderwoman for the same reason. Of course, Marvel’s Captain Mar-vel (an alien) is dead so they could create a female Captain Marvel.

        The big screams about the female Thor is that “Thor” is the male character’s name and they had (or going to have) a woman calling herself Thor.

              1. *My* last name fits? What kind of screwy hole do you have? (Gentlemen, you may fire at will.)

                All I ask are a good cause, some laconic last words, and to take some of the bastards with me. And a good last meal. Perhaps a small monument, nothing fancy just some tastefully guided marble. Maybe a small harem of gorgeous women lamenting my demise.

                Oh, and a song. Something mournful, but with a beat you can drink to.

                1. There are songs you can’t drink to? Granted some are more prone to driving you to drink, than you actually drinking to the beat, but why quibble?

                  1. *I* can drink to any song, but I’m a trained professional with years of experience. I don’t want my legacy to be the kind of alcohol abuse you see with dwarves and their qwaffing during their “gold” songs.

                    1. I like to think that one of my ancestors (the family hails from the German side of the rhine) made quite an impression on the French.

          1. *Evil sense of humor that I have,* I pictured a small “action figure,” with a slightly chewed tootsie roll mini(tm) underneath. It would have the caption. “I’m Thor.” 🙂

        1. It’s goofy that Thor doesn’t even have the right to his own *name* anymore. Giving it to a woman is like calling a boy “Sue”.

          1. Now I’m hearing Johnny Cash in the background.

            “She grew up hard/she grew up mean/her fists got hard/and her wits got keen . . .”

            But if that’s the case, Odin is going to be really, really, unhappy when she tracks him down.

        2. And there’s already been at least one, and possibly two, “female Thor” characters who have appeared in Marvel Comics. One of them is “Thor Girl”, who is still alive and well (though I’m not sure how actively used she is). I think there’s another one as well, though I’m not certain.

          1. In the “Kids of Avengers” animated movie (fighting Ultron, actually), Thor’s place is taken by his daughter. Doesn’t have a hammer, but a sword with a lot of the powers.

  4. Oh good. Because the word magic story is set in a place where the kind, all-knowing matriarchy is part of the problem. And they’re causing environmental problems. Yes, I’m a traitor to my sex, et cetera, and so on. 😀

  5. The thing is, they are constantly getting updates. I remember (dimly, but I remember) during the early 1970’s, when the hot thing in “alternative energy” was hydroelectric power. If only the Government would get off its keister and build more hydroelectric power, all our problems would be solved.

    And then Jimmy Carter got elected, and proposed to actually BUILD some hydroelectric power plants, and all Right Thinkers went postal on him.

    Now, the Great Salvation is Wind and Solar. If the government would just get off its keister and build more wind and solar farms all our problems would be solved. And I ask, really wanting to know, what are the side effects? By converting wind and sunlight into electricity, you are taking energy out of a dynamic system. If you take enough of it to be useful, doesn’t that have to have an effect?

    And most of them can’t even process the question. It’s gibberish to them.

    Tangent; That business with the hydroelectric is one of several reasons I can’t get as mad at Jimmy Carter as I probably should. He arrived in office and did, or tried to do, what his far-left constituencies said they wanted him to do, and got a vast raft of sh*t for it in almost every case. I think it made him neurotic and maybe something worse, and that’s why he’s been kissing up to foreign scumbags ever since. The American Left elected him, the American Left abandoned him (and gave him several swift kicks by was of saying goodbye), and he’s looking for the respect he expected when he got elected President.

    Doesn’t mean he isn’t an antisemitic jackass who is a reliable reverse compass (if he likes something, it’s awful. if he says something, it’s bilge).

    1. And then Jimmy Carter got elected, and proposed to actually BUILD some hydroelectric power plants, and all Right Thinkers went postal on him.

      Apparently it’s a mistake to actually implement solutions that would solve the problem. You can see this with the “campus rape crisis” as well.

      The entire movement is made up of people who are happiest when they have something to complain about, isn’t it?

      1. Apparently it’s a mistake to actually implement solutions that would solve the problem.

        Of course. If you actually solved the problem, you’d have to find something else to do with your time instead of bossing around people and making a huge pile of dough off of “raising awareness” and related claptrap.

          1. and indulge in quotidian forms of goodness like telling the truth and giving to charity, which involve sacrifice.

            1. Rather than having the government do everything for you (talk to people, settle playground disputes, patch your scrapes, make other people share . . .)

    2. Agreed about the reverse compass. He has guts however. As I recall, he was one of the people that went in to clean up a radioisotope spill in Canada. Took a couple of years worth of dosage doing it too.

      1. I’m not sure if it’s because of the whole “don’t admit any virtue in an opponent” tactic from the Left (formalized, I know it’s a human failing at times) or because of the a villain is always flat unless he’s an anti-hero and then he’s superior to heroes thing, but I spent half an hour last night arguing with my husband about how to have his Big Villain be evil even though she’s got “so many good traits.”

        She does- she never lies, is loyal, will sacrifice herself right along side others… and did bloody sacrifice to elevate a demon into god-level power, then walked in to the leadership of her people and ripped all the “unclean” bits out of them, and oh yeah is actively leading her people in genocide with incidental slaughter of anyone who gets in the way.

        He’s looking at it from a “signaling” side, where any good traits are going to be justification; I’m looking at it from a Catholic morality side, going “uh… I don’t care if the Big Bad is nice to puppies and volunteers at a hospice, he’s Hitler and Mengele rolled into one.”

      2. You piqued my curiosity, so I did some digging. It wasn’t a radioisotope spill, it was the first reactor accident. When I got to the part where the pumped 10,000 curies (!) into a patch of sand my inner radcon tech wee’d itself, ran into a corner, and started crying. Right now we’re in the process of moving less than a dozen curies off of an aircraft carrier, and you’d think we were playing with VX.

        1. Ok, I know better, but in my mind 1 Curie == amount of radiation required to kill one female french scientist.

    3. The quantity of energy you’re removing from the system using those power sources isn’t really an issue, because it’s a tiny fraction of the overall energy in the region. However, by blocking the wind, and shifting the motion around, you can screw up the weather patterns. You haven’t done it by removing energy, exactly, just interrupting its delivery from one place to another.

        1. And suffocate them by pulling the air out of their lungs.

          Obama has told them that it’s no problem if they kill endangered birds.

      1. I’d be a lot happier with the “The quantity of energy removed is too small to matter” answer if I thought anybody had actually STUDIED the matter. I’ve been poking at this since the 1970’s, and I’ve never seen mention of any such study. Maybe I’m dense, and worried over nothing. But I have noticed that favored “alternative energy” sources only seem to remain favored until there is some actual danger they will be implemented on a useful scale, and then suddenly the Usual Suspects are up in arms about it. I don’t want to make all the shifts in infrastructure that moving to wind and solar would require and end up with the same shrill dingbats throwing hissyfits all over again.

        1. It is documented that summertime high temperatures are 1-2 degrees higher in a wind farm.

          1. They also bugger up weather radar. A busy wind farm out here is often reported as a Level two or three thunderstorm in spring and summer, even though the controllers know it’s not. But that is what shows up on their radar, so they have to warn us. A real storm in the same place can be masked, although by now everyone pretty much knows what to look for/look out for.

            1. Are you having any trouble with subtonics? I ask because that’s what people are complaining of in Britain. Don’t know whether it’s a real problem, or a talking point.

              1. The one time I’ve been up close and personal to an operating turbine on foot, just one mind, it made my teeth ache and my bones felt sore, for lack of a better word. The sound bugged me, but the subsonics made me very uncomfortable. I’m not sure if repeated exposure would help me get used to either.

              2. Not sure about cattle or local ranchers having trouble. It’s a touchy question because of the $$ and environmental fights involved.

              3. Considering the fact that all the ones I have been around have been turned off and still, no. If they were actually working and producing power, I have no idea, but that is such a rare occurrence, why worry about it?

    4. Solar’s running into problems, as well. Governor Schwarzenneger, here in California, tried to build a massive solar farm out in the Mojave Desert. Lots of empty, unused space that no one wanted, and lots of sun. In short, the perfect place for a solar farm. But then the “nature preservation” greens got wind of it, and killed it. See, building that solar farm would result in *massive* amounts of habitat destruction.

      So, for a very brief time (until the plan was abandoned), we got to see the amusing spectacle of one of those rare green on green fights – in this case, the “renewable energy” greens vs the “preserve nature” greens.

      1. Where’s the water supposed to come from to keep the panels clean so they will work to max possible efficiency? That’s one of the walls industrial solar runs into out here – too much dust and no water.

        1. That may be the largest single problem with ground-based solar. According to an electrical engineer I know, and IIRC of course, a film of dust too thin to see with the naked eye will reduce the panel’s output by 60% or more. Now in orbit you wouldn’t have that problem; you just have that ever-growing field of orbital debris to worry about.

              1. They can put it in my back yard provided I get 5¢ for every megawatt. A fair lease for the land

            1. The theory was all done in the late seventies by Gerard K. O’Neill. The radiation density above the rectenna is low enough birds can fly safely.

                1. Could be. I probably confused the habitats at L5 with the geosync powersats. Has been a couple of days.

          1. In orbit you have about a 1-2% per year degradation of output due to radiation damage to the semiconductors.

      2. Seems to me that if one wants to put solar panels on empty, unused space, one couldn’t do much better than the roofs of a residential subdivision.

        It has the added advantage of putting the power source close to the end user, for less transmission loss, and doesn’t interfere with delicate desert tortoises, or whatever.

        1. I think it would work better spread across parking lots, as a sort of ‘roof’. you could even have them be semi-transparent ( ‘tint’ instead of opaque solar cells do work) and would mean that while still lit by the sun, they would have partial shade all day. Something that would have been nice when it was 114 in early September… And shopping mall and megastore roofs as well.

          1. And yet, no matter WHERE you put them, they still can’t pay for themselves over their expected service life, without government subsidies. I think they actually CAN pay for the cost of manufacture now, but still can’t go beyond that to cover the cost of installation.

            1. The cheap Chinese PV panels are cheap because of subsidies by the Chinese government. Designed to get a monopoly on the PV market, hopefully to raise prices before the government goes broke.

              1. naah, they are actually cheaper. See, when you no longer worry about the toxic waste getting dumped into the environment, PV cells become much cheaper.

        2. That’s where all the folks I know who have private solar panels put theirs.

          The only way it works is tax subsidies, though…..

    5. I don’t think they’ve freaked out on geothermal, yet, which Iceland has proved to be a viable solution, so long as you have their geological characteristics in your area. (grin)

          1. I would think you could get enough power to feed the grid west of the Mississippi River and north of Hoover Dam

            1. Jefferson, are you talking about putting electricity pick ups in the Founding Father’s tombs again? I do understand the spinning could power the entire country, but it just AIN’T respectful.

              1. But it would work. We could restore the Bill of Rights and run the country off the spinning of a hundred years of progressives?

            2. The power, sure, but I’m a bit more concerned about transmission difficulties. (Although, even if it did only put out power to everything in a 100-mile radius–which, out there, means a whole lot of nothin’–it might be worth it just to release some pressure from the supervolcano under there.)

              1. I’d like to see someone tackle the power storage issues. It doesn’t matter if we can generate enough energy at 2am for a day’s worth of whatever if the power is needed at even 7am and we don’t have the capacity to ‘save’ it. Now there may be someone out there doing so, if so… tell! :). (Yes, I’m probably jumping in the middle, but hopefully not too out of place.)

                1. Flywheels with permanent magnetic bearings should be able to store much of the energy generated. Bury it in the backyard for safety.

                  Dust on solar panels might be fixable with simple windshield-wipers. You’d still need a water reserve so the wipers didn’t scratch the panels though. Or maybe the dust could be actively ionized and repelled from the panels? That’d increase both cost and complexity though.

                  Meh. I want a Mr. Fusion that will run off my garbage.

      1. Well, there aaas an experimental station to be built in Hawaii, sometime in the early 1990’s (I think), and the Usual Suspects mobbed the place.

        They don’t do that in Iceland, but that’s probably because Icelanders wouldn’t put up with it from outsiders.

        1. There was talk about putting one out by Paulina Lake in Central Oregon, but that was a controversy, there were others suggested near Crater lake, around the time of Carter, but that was scotched by the fear that it might make Crater lake turbid somehow.
          I wanted to propose using deep oil techniques in my back yard to set up a geothermal station in my back yard, but here it could take up to a couple of miles down to get a warm drip.

          I think Iceland, Larderello Italy and New Zealand have major geothermal. I’m not sure where else does.

          1. Northern CA has a bunch – wikipedia says 22 – of geothermal plants up at The Geysers, producing just under 1,000 MW. Apparently that’s what some of the local utilities are using to sell even more expensive “green” power at a premium to homeowners.

      2. I think the only reason there hasn’t been a mass freak-out about geothermal is that it’s still fairly rare. I have heard occasional rumblings about earthquake scares from geothermal. So there’s already one argument against it already set up. It’s just not worth deploying the argument until the public becomes aware that geothermal might be an option.

    6. A really large solar farm shipping 10% of the insolation out electrically would nicely replace the Sahara…

  6. Does tend to explain why they are so viciously cruel in their attacks on either black conservative men or conservative women of any color to the extent of denying that they even belong to those categories.
    Case in point: VP Biden’s son is kicked out of the Naval Academy for drug use, no mention in the greater media. The Palin family is involved in a public argument, story after story in the papers and certain TV channels. Follow the party line, support the narrative and we protect you. Speak up in ways we don’t approve of and we will do our best to destroy you.
    And then too, the current Bill Maher kerfuffle. Bash Christians and Jews, high five, praise for how edgy and hip. Say the same about Muslims, get disinvited from speaking at Berkley.

    1. Quibble: Hunter Biden was booted from the Navy Reserve, not the Academy. He was commissioned as an ensign in 2012, tested positive for cocaine in 2013, and booted in February, 2014. He’s also in his mid 40’s, and frankly, IMO, should have been hung from the yardarm rather than being given an administrative discharge.

      1. My bad, what one gets from blogging from memory instead of revisiting the article. Still serves to illustrate the “we protect our own” attitude of the left and their media fellow travelers.

      2. What needs to be investigated is how he got in the Navy Reserve in the first place. He had to have an age waver and he is not in any field to justify it.

        1. He got into the Navy the same way Gary Hart got in – direct commission via political pull.

    2. Yup. The family of the woman who *didn’t* become Vice President is bigger news than the family of the man who did.

      But there’s no bias.

    3. I read the linked Roosh article and I think he got suckered in a very important way. He thinks they SJWs are trying to create a hierarchy of counterprivilege in reaction to the hierarchy of low privilege they imagine. Some few of them maybe are, the ones who criticized Carol Costello for her Palin audio reaction. In general they are not; their “liberalism” is as completely divorced from their principles as the Christianity of an Inquisitor. It’s not about protecting blacks or women any more than the Inquistion was about loving the Lord your God and your neighbor. It’s about defeating the almost totally imaginary racist sexist theocratic boogeymen (like it was about defeating the almost totally imaginary Satan-worshipping witches) and, of course, enjoying the indulgences granted to righteous warriors like Nina Burleigh claimed for Bill Clinton.

      That’s why our esteemed host is treated the same as a white male Anglo-Saxon Protestant powerholder. She opposes their power structure, which is all they care about.

      1. “like it was about defeating the almost totally imaginary Satan-worshipping witches”

        Let us be just. That was overwhelming the work of secular courts in lands where the writ of the Inquisition did not run. The Inquisition is why Italy had no major witch hunts, and Spain only did once, when the laity suborned the inquisitors. The Inquisitions were very pedantic about evidence. They would say things like — so she bewitched you, and you fell ill? How do you know that? People fall ill all the time. Even if it was clearly unnatural, how do you know that some devil didn’t do it out of its own desire to do harm? Throughout the rest of Europe, a confessed witch saying “I saw you at the sabbat” was a serious charge, your being at home in bed being no defense since that was obviously an illusion, but despite the anger they would rouse in the population, inquisitors would say that it could have been an illusion at the sabbat not in the bed, so it wasn’t evidence either way.

          1. As it happens, I have a good reference!


            The gal that wrote it is a bit snippy and can be a flutter-head, but does decent research. 😉

            That said, the mythology of the Inquisition is pretty well set, largely because we heard about it from the English– whose folks went to great lengths making up stuff about folks they were at war with, and a Church they’d had a rather nasty split from.

            There’s a reason folks assumed all the Nazi stuff they heard about was exaggeration, it was traditional.

            1. That’s always the problem, isn’t it? It’s a real problem when real world atrocities look like something out of a propaganda broadsheet.

              That’s also one of the problems with the current White House administration. So much of the stuff that they’re getting up to sounds like something out of a tinfoil hat website.

              1. DOJ running guns, using their authority to force dealers to accept strawman purchases? To Mexican gangs? And they end up back in the US?

                It does sound like a bad 90s movie, and that’s just the stuff that’s absolutely proven.

                1. It’s unsettling when real life outstrips the most rabid conspiracy theorist. Furthermore when the theory will be weighed seriously no matter how improbable is a symptom of the lack of faith in the governing agencies.

  7. I’m beginning to think we need a better descriptor than “SJW”. We need a word. Something short and concise. About four letters long.

          1. My most sincere apologies to my homeland and loved ones. John Baruck is dead, he hit his head.

        1. It probably makes for a more apt description, Socially Judgmental Whiners, but it doesn’t roll off the tongue as well.

          1. Socialist Judgmental Whiners?

            Although that may be an injustice to whiners, I don’t think the Britishism “whingers” is sufficiently familiar to be useful.

            1. Oh, no… One must come up with a term that will roll trippingly off the tongue, so that uttering it is as aesthetically pleasing as the name itself is emotionally pleasing.


                1. I considered one ending in —-head but this ain’t Salon.

                  Better, with nice tripping off tongue quality: Sanctimonious judgmental whiners.

                  Too many of them have sub-minimum wage jobs with the labor unions and ACORN’s heirs to properly call them “jobless.”

    1. I’ve been thinking that SJW should really stand for “Social Justice Whiners,” thus making “whiner” decent shorthand. Can’t get it down to 4 letters without more work, though. Alas, most other terms I’ve thought up haven’t been publishable.

      1. I like it, but how could we tell somebody was referring to those twits rather than some other twits?

        1. Why should we go to the trouble to differentiate? They’re all twits together. And since the SWJs are special snowflakes almost without exception, giving them a special category only encourages them.

          1. …What. Oh man, the insane train of ‘thought’ these SJWs spew. My laughing is so much better than coffee.

            (Not very good for commission work though… I can’t draw if I’m laughing too hard. Pinups if anyone is wondering. Yep, pin-ups. I’m ‘such an avant-garde gendertraitor!’)

  8. I’ve noticed that all these sort of people are not happy telling you what they believe.
    To make their world work they have to tell you what YOU believe.
    Otherwise it all breaks down.
    To hear them they are never rejected for what they believe. Which is something they could change. They are rejected because of WHO they are because (defining you again) you just hate them.

    1. Oh, no, they will tell you what they believe, but only when they don’t think you’re listening. Just read a news article that claims that people in the administration actually called an allied head of state “aspergery.” This from the people that told us that using the term “retarded” is demeaning to the mentally retarded.

        1. If we had a president that was half the leader that Bibi is, Vlad would not have invaded the Ukraine, the RIFs would be shaking in their robes, and Iraq would not be getting overrun by ISIS. Among other things.

          1. Ans sexy. Have you seen pics of Bibi in his IDF uniform? Swoon. Okay, shallow moment over (not really, but…)

                    1. Glad to be of help. HT Powerline’s Masthead Picks.


                      Speaking of Powerline, check their picture for their endorsement of Stewart Mills in Minnesota’s 8th District. When i forst saw it I wondered why the picture of Leverage‘s Eliot (Christian Kane) Spencer.

                    2. It’s only proof of Goodness CAN equal Beauty!

                      (I find myself remembering a gloating ditty that Rhys made up yeaaaaaaaaars ago. “I have a hot hot hottie… and yours is not.” Something like that. I don’t really remember the rest. I think it was in response to a photo I sent to him of me and a tiny, tiny mini. After I’d given birth to our son, and a friend told him about the angry glares I got from some women. <.<; The sheer amount of stress I was under after having the bubs was why I dropped so much weight. I don't think people would like that as a weight-loss program… Then of course, there was Rhys himself, after he got out of Basic. Oh my. What manscaping! I sang the ditty to him in response.)

                1. As best I can tell, that would’ve probably been ’72, around the time he was part of a big rescue of a hijacked Serbian plane, so he’s about 23 in that picture, so it’s OK for me to call him cute. 😀

            1. My husband laughed and said that he’d noticed that Bibi looked less like a twit than most, and we started doing movie star shot comparisons.
              Yeah, cute.

        1. But they’re doing it for the right reason– not like those icky other people. Ends justify the means, don’t you know?!


    2. I remember the words of the famous krogan philosopher, Urdnot Wrex:
      “They’re fools, you should eat them.”

      Now I want to play through Mass Effect 1 again.

  9. “I suspect the same thing is what happened in the Soviet Union under communism, and why they are having so much trouble rebuilding a civil society without recourse to authoritarian, soviet-like structures.”

    And before them, too. I recommend La Russie en 1839 in whatever abridged edition you can find. (Apparently no one’s translated the whole thing to English.) But my edition has a forward by someone from the American embassy who recommends it as the best guide to understanding the Soviet Union.

  10. “What I know is this: when people here tell me to write “authentically Portuguese” fantasy and not elves and dwarves . . .”

    This is one of those things that drives me NUTS. Trying to enforce some kind of caste system when it comes to writing fiction. I’m a male Caucasian, so, according to these numbskulls, I’m only qualified to write generic European fantasy. But if I *did* write that, I’d be criticized by those same people for it. And if I tried to write non-Western fantasy, they’d accuse me of . . . cultural appropriation.

    I will write what I want to write. They don’t get a vote in deciding what that is.

    1. Hey, there’s some pretty funky shared Portuguese/Spanish folklore from the middle parts of the Middle Ages. Bernardo del Carpio (he’s new to me too). Either the legitimate or illegitimate (fictional) son of a king’s sister and a count. King didn’t like marriage/non-marriage, count was imprisoned. Son was brought up not knowing his dad’s identity. Finally found out, kept doing the Labors of Hercules for stupid King in the hope his dad would be released, king kept stringing him along.

      Anyway, the amusing thing was that Bernardo de Carpio (fictionally) is the hero who put a beatdown on Roland and the Frankish forces. Dang, those Basques hold a grudge against the French! (There’s actually another contender, in which some Basque George Washington kills Roland at the age of toddlerhood practically. Boy, the Basques hold a grudge.)

      Apparently he is referenced in Don Quixote, but I don’t remember him.

      Maybe he’s why you guys keep hitting people with carp?

    2. Also, if you point this out, they will — I have seen it — say that this is good because it gives white/male/whatevers the sort of “everything you do is wrong” experience that minorities have suffered.

    3. “they don’t get a vote” — ok. I assumed they got the same vote as I do: if they buy one copy of your book, equals one vote for that kind of book. Nothing else really counts, does it?

  11. Also, anyone who lived through both administrations, let along those of GWB and Obama, knows that whatever the heck Reagan did WORKED.

    There’s a meme going around FB about how the Obama Admin is unfairly maligned because it has all these great things that it’s accomplished, and lists unemployment and new job creation statistics. I haven’t had the time to fisk it, but it’s a bunch of half-truths and spin that set my teeth on edge.

    1. If you’re cooking the numbers, you can flavor them any way you want.

      But all the spinning doesn’t change the actual situation. They really don’t get that reality isn’t subject to spin.

        1. Ah, yes. The ‘Reality-based’ contingent… who never admit that their ‘reality’ isn’t necessarily congruent with the world the rest of us inhabit.

      1. I don’t care how much pepper and garlic you put on week old sun-ripened salmon, it is still rotten and stinks to high heaven.

        1. And if that’s the only dish that they allow to be put out – then you don’t have much of a choice.

          That’s their desire – to make sure you DON’T have any choice but to accept what they’re serving.

  12. Whenever I read this sort of thing from you or others, I fear to comment to a certain extent. Even though I hope to count among the “nice guys,” the fact is that among many of the GHH and SHW I can not win. If I praise a woman, either I’m being disingenuous or she’s really uncle tomming a man, if I praise a man, I’m being hateful towards women, if I insult a woman I’m hateful towards women. If I insult a man I’m just sucking up. The imposition of silence comes from the fear you so well describe. Ick.

    1. Can lead to two reactions, either one no longer dares to do anything, or one does everything with no regards as to what the SJWs and similar types think. Hopefully we are getting closer to the last alternative (not that this is without its problems, some of the SJW causes started with real problems, but as the SJWs have become the boy who cried wolf a long time ago, well.).

      1. it’s like being caught outside when it starts to rain. You’ll get wet regardless, so don’t fret too much over it.

        Also, Social Justice Weasels will insist on taking all “you”s as personal, not generic. If you observe that you will be accuse of cultural appropriation, they will indignantly treat it as a personal accusation; if you gave up a European setting, I won’t accuse you.

        Like observing that you can’t go anywhere in a wartorn city without being sniped at, and a sniper saying that if you went down another street (where there are other snipers) he won’t shoot at you.

      2. Or it can lead to doing anything that is against SJWs beliefs/desires, without regard to WHAT that anything is, or whether it is good or bad in its own right.

    1. “Butthurt Little Bitch Brigade”

      Do I want to know what that unit insignia looks like?

        1. I just finished reading the story of St. Minas and the boatman. It’s an amusing juxtaposition. My brain wants to replace the arrow with something else feathered.

            1. Thanks for that. May decide to pick it up. I’ve been wanting something cute and somewhat brainless and positive to watch / have playing in the background while I work.

              I tend to find myself paying attention to Konata if I have Lucky Star playing, or K-On!

      1. Eh, hard to tell whether a fairy tale is imported. It’s amazing how often you read one and check off the type. . . .

          1. Not exactly unusual. Fairies are very rare in fairy tales even in cultures with fairy lore. Usually “Cinderella” has the aid of her dead mother.

            Or did you mean magic of one kind or another? that would indeed be a different matter and a limiting factor.

            OTOH, the reason why Tolkien wrote was to invent a mythology for England, which he thought lacking in folklore.

            1. I mean magic. Fairies, being part of it. But old gods too. The only magic is somehow church-sanctioned. There is a friar who runs around getting women magically pregnant and tracking week-grown babies into his habit to take them elsewhere and such, but he’s a friar, not a magic worker, and it’s usually all achieved by “herbs.” There actually isn’t “magic” as such done.

              1. “There is a friar who runs around getting women magically pregnant.”

                (raises eyebrow) I’ll be does!

              2. Herbs? Uh, huh. A funny herb that’s just become legal in Colorado, perhaps?

                You know, it’s a good thing Columbus didn’t haul back marijuana instead of tobacco…

  13. Early in this entry, I was fascinated by that account of Portuguese folklore being apparently scoured free of supernatural details. Something like that happened in the Appalachain Mountains, I think. Francis James Child collected folk songs in Britain while the people who remembered them were still alive (it was often close. Yeats wrote “Down By the Sallie Garden” based on a tune and two lines an old woman remembed, the rest lost.) After he’d done all he thought he could in the British Isles, he went to the U. S. and started collecting songs in the Appalachian Mountains, which he’d heard was a great source of folk songs. He found they were often the same songs, but the American versions cleaned of the sinister supernatural and the songs turned into crime ballads. “The Twa Sisters” (You Tube has it recorded by Pentangle as “Cruel Sister”) is one of the greatest horror stories ever written, set to a nice tune. The U. S. version has a flat True Confessions type ending. The moral song “House Carpenter”, recored by Pentangle and Natalie Merchant, wife runs away with sailor and weeps as ship sinks in storm and she pictures herself going to Hell, began as “The Demon Lover, or the Ballad of James Harris,” which ends with the seduced wife noticing her lover has cloven hoofs (hate it when that happens, definitely a sign a date is going South) and he turns into Satan and wrecks the ship. If that sounds familiar, Shirley Jackson in her short story collection “The Lottery,” has one story after another including a character in the background, often just mentioned, named James Harris, and after the last story she quotes the spectacularly supernatural ending of the first Child version.

    1. Re: American song-scrubbing, it depends on where you are, what kind of preachers you had in the area, and what kind of traumas happened there. But some of it is personal preference. Even in Ireland, you can find the true crime, mundane love, and supernatural versions of songs existing side by side.

      Re: saints, there’s nothing wrong with a good saint fairy tale. The Grimms had plenty of that, and the medieval Irish had a fun time with writing a tale of St. Patrick hanging out with the last of Fionn’s people. The problem is that you have to be very clear somehow in the telling on what parts are hagiography, what is history, and what is folk tale, or people have a freaking hissy at you for disrespect (Catholics, Orthodox, et al) or they tell you all Catholics are saint-worshipping pagans (Protestants, atheists, et al). It is genre-blending with a vengeance.

      Personally, I think the legend of St. Meno (Boot to the Head!) is pretty awesome and worth any misunderstandings, but you just have to anticipate that there can be a problem.

              1. I love that record so much. That’s why I was so happy to see a military saint get to perform Boot to the Head. (Of course, the problem is that afterwards, when I went to the Egyptian Festival over at St. Mina’s, the freakin’ song kept running through my mind….)

      1. One of my favorite New Mexican folk tales involves Jesus and St. Peter walking along a road. They pass by the teamster who is lying in the shade and praying for someone to help move his stuck wagon, but put their shoulders to the wheel for the teamster who is cursing up a storm while helping his own beasts. St. Peter’s a little confused but Jesus says that the second man’s curses are on his lips, not in his heart, and he’s working, not loafing.

        And then there’s the one about Lady Death, la Doña Sebastiana, and the peasant she makes into a healer . . .

    2. I enjoyed Manly Wade Wellman’s _Who Fears the Devil?_ for some ideas about what some Appalachians replaced the fairies with, though it’s fiction by a writer who studied Appalachian folklore rather than a collection of the folklore itself. They are great stories and I find them rather inspiring.

  14. From my reading of history the only way there could have been a lot of Carthaginians in Portugal is that after Rome crushed Carthage in the third Punic war they fled there. Carthage never conquered 95% of present day Portugal. It’s also more likely that the Carthaginian refugees went east towards civilization and not west.

      1. Oh yes. It was from Spain that they launched their attack over the Alps, but it shows they had colonies toward the west.

      2. Yep. From what I can remember, the Carthagenians arrived in the 7th Century BC. They came after the Phoenicians but before, again IIRC, the Greeks.

    1. The Phoenicians colonized quite a bit in many successive waves throughout the Med’s littoral region. Some of those may or may not have formally recognized Carthage’s soverignty in any given era.

  15. I think one problem with creative thinking is that in order to work, you have to be able to think outside the box. In order to get something new, you can’t just go down the old well worn path. But to groupthink types, going outside the box is an anathema.

  16. Movie side, 3D animation is getting there. Look at RBWY. It’s done exclusively in a program that costs less than $500 (with cheaper versions for people who don’t do as much.) It’ll take time, but it’s getting there. (I say as a hobbyist animator. Yes, I currently suck but I have aspirations of more. 😉 Also… I have too many serious hobbies.)

    1. I have too many serious hobbies.

      I’m familiar with this phenomenon. I’ve been meaning to trim mine down. Right after I figure out which ones I’m not obsessed with…

        1. Curse of the hobby. The more involved you become the more tangents you find.

          And they’re so cute when they’re young!

        1. Merging hobbies result in more hobbies. Writing and art merged into graphic novels and animations. Singing and poetry merged into songwriting which merged with prose for musicals…

          Rocks and languages and analysis and science and stuff that pay (or have payed) the bills just happily add details to the above. Best advice I ever got: when you pick the profession that pays for the fun, enjoy it. The money better be EXTREMELY Good if that’s all you get out of it.

  17. Just so we all know what the SJW types are really like:
    “In that sense, Lena Dunham may truly be the voice of her generation: The enormous affluence and indulgence of her upbringing did not sate her sundry hungers — for adoration, for intellectual respect that she has not earned, for the unsurpassable delight of moral preening — but instead amplified and intensified her sense of entitlement. The Brooklyn of Girls is nothing more or less than a 21st-century version of the Malibu Barbie Dreamhouse, with New York City taxis standing in for the pink Corvette. Writers naturally indulge their own autobiographical and social fantasies, from Brideshead Revisited to The Lord of the Rings, but Girls represents a phenomenon distinctly of our time: the fantasy not worth having.”

      1. For a philosopher who watched his mentor condemned by the public (for reasons that sort of make sense–one of his students was Alcibiades), it is a fantasy worth having.
        Also, given Greek upper-class attitudes towards women, his weirdness about sex and whatnot are at least understandable, even if the premises are so far off-base as to be laughable.

    1. If any of this is remotely true (and note, Lena wrote the original book as autobiography) Lena Dunham is a horrible person who was raised by horrible people.

      She apparently molested her little sister so reliably that her sister could prank her by leaving objects in her genitalia for her to find. This is okay because …?

      In Dunham’s telling, she had been at a party, drinking and taking Xanax and cocaine, and went to bed willingly with Barry.

      Because that’s what everybody does at parties. Taking three intoxicants simultaneously, and then having casual sex with whoever they run into. And if they don’t like how the sex turned out, this becomes “rape.” Because it’s everybody’s fault but her own.

      Dunham is entitled to good sex and happy feelings afterward, even when she’s basically picked her partner at random. And if she doesn’t get this, the world is being unfair to her.

      As to the alleged second woman, unless this is a Japanese hardcore horror hentai and “Barry” is a demon, I don’t know how the walls wound up splattered with blood. And if that’s the case, shouldn’t someone have checked the second woman for actually being a possessed flesh puppet? Seriously, is this even possible, short of a severe beating which would be prosecutable as simple assault and battery?

      And I think it’s amusing that she uses “lesbian” as an insult, when she claims to all this amazing enlightenment and she in point of fact has a lesbian sister. The same one she used to rape on a regular basis when the sister was a toddler. Which somehow didn’t make Dunham a “lesbian,” even though Dunham was the one initiating these encounters.

      Note that she gets to criticize both female and male physical appearance, including being contemptuous of other women for loving men who don’t match her own exacting physical standards (free clue, Dunham, what’s important is that they are happy with their husbands, not that you are). But it’s bad when others criticize her appearance. Or accept her appearance if she is unhappy (the ex-boyfriend, one of a depressingly long string of failed romances, who loved her even when she was “fat.”)

      I can imagine what this woman is like in person. An insane perfectionist regarding everybody else’s behavior, including demanding that others comply with standards she never states explicitly and probably self-contradictory standards — and with absolutely no standards regarding her own behavior.

      I’d say she was fun at parties, but then after the parties she accuses one of rape.

      1. But it’s bad when others criticize her appearance. Or accept her appearance if she is unhappy (the ex-boyfriend, one of a depressingly long string of failed romances, who loved her even when she was “fat.”)

        And it’s double-plus ungood if someone has the temerity to ask her why she so frequently appears naked on her show in situations in which nudity makes absolutely no sense whatsoever.

        During the middle of that little mess, she actually stated that anyone who didn’t want to see her naked needs psychological help.

  18. In the old traditional publishing they could hem us in in the same way. I knew if I wrote even something so innocuous as a communist villain and a good businessman in the same story, I’d never sell it. Ever. It was unthinkable.

    I know a lot of folks hated the newest Indiana Jones, but it won my heart when it had Soviet Official villains– and treated them exactly like the Nazis in prior movies.

    1. We’ve found out afterward that Stephen Spielberg movies like “1941” and “Jaws” had John Milius busy uncredited in the background. They won’t finance the director of “Red Dawn,” so his liberal buddies give him behind the scenes work, rather like the 50s blacklist. The IMDB entry on “IJ and the Last Crusade” doesn’t mention Milius, but SOMEBODY working on that movie knew a heck of a lot about firearms of the period, how German steel-jacketed pistol bullets overpenetrated and ricocheted, etc. And I loved the opening of “Crystal Skull,” I took it to be a parody of the 60s nuke movie “Ladybug, Ladybug.” In which kids try to survive nuke war that didn’t happen by hiding in a refrigerator.

  19. Well, the Victorian Age came and went; these are far worse; but, the citizens today have lost the civilization the Victorians had to effect any change. They might make an impression on college campus, but the common citizen, not as much as the Victorians could. They are trying to change construction workers in New York from yelling at girls on the street according to my Facebook page today. I really wonder how far that will get them.

    1. I think that the Victorians are mostly misunderstood. Probably because the only common references come from Dickens and Marx, neither of whom created a balanced viewpoint. I’m interested to see what else is out there from the 1840’s that didn’t show the world as a depressed bunch of poverty stricken masses being oppressed by brutal overlords. Everything I see seem to indicate that may not have been the case.

      1. My spotty reading has led me to the belief that a lot of the “poverty stricken masses” stuff that was written in the Victorian era was motivated by a selfish nostalgia for the day when TRADESMEN knew their place and the peasants were busy making the aristocracy rich (instead of the tradesmen). The facts seem to be that moving from the country into the cities and manufactures meant moving from lives of pastoral squalor, starvation, and abysmal ignorance to lives of urban squalor, malnutrition, and serious ignorance. Maybe not good compared to an ideal, but obviously an improvement in many ways.

          1. I was meaning the Political Correctness, the required speech forms and easily offended honor. The putting almost floor length table cloths on tables to conceal the legs, calling legs- limbs. The reason “Alice in Wonderland’ was written type of thing. As Humpty-dumpty (Egg sitting on a wall I think. It’s been a while) “A word means what I want it to mean.” I see the SJW as a modern secular version. Dangerous, by all means; but, doomed to fail in the long run.

        1. Perhaps it’s the same phenomena as folks in huge cities being sure that the world is stuffed to the gills?

          After all, if you see five families who are dirty, sickly and thin in a block, it has a bigger mental effect than knowing that half of all the ones that worked on the “lovely, scenic” farms were that way, and all of your friends saw those same five families and likewise had no concept that they’re a twentieth instead of a half…..

    2. I see why this comment was taken out of context. It was supposed to be a reply to a multi-comment elsewhere. It was to follow one of According to Hoyt comments. When I wrote it, it was where I placed it, I come back and it’s moved. Sorry for the confusion. I’m going to make my future comments ‘stand alone’ from now on. That way, when wordpress plays musical chairs, it won’t be out of place.

  20. I play Scandinavian fiddle music, and so I come into contact with lots of Swedish and Norwegian musicians. It is just about impossible to talk to them about non-socialist governments or about the demographic fate of their countries, esp. the Swedes. They just look at you with a puzzled expression.

    It’s not that they want to or can debate you, it’s that they don’t think a debate is possible.

    1. I suspect our very own Statist Josh feels that way when trying to advocate his Anarcho-Capitalist philosophy, even to this fairly libertarian lot.

      1. He might feel that way, but there’s *lots* of places that A-C has been debated on the interwebs. I first came across the notion on the Cypher Punks mailing list 20 years ago (Tim May and Jim Bell), and while it’s got it’s appeal it’s got the same critical flaw that every other political philosophy has.

        There are a lot of people, even in the US, who simply can’t process the idea of a non-authoritarian government. We call them “peasants”.

    2. I get this in other parts of the music industry… they complain about the cost of Nord (Clavia) and Elektron synths and my standard response is ‘Imagine what they would cost of the taxes weren’t so high’.

      I either get a puzzled look, or a ‘you just trampled the sacred cow!!!’ look.

      1. I asked a cashier the other day what the taxes are on a gallon of gas now & she couldn’t find it. It used to be posted on the pumps. At least she didn’t look at me like I was insane.

          1. Interesting, I would have expected Washington and California to be in the top three, but North Carolina being number one surprises me. As does it’s neighbor Georgia being the lowest.

        1. I was referring to how high income tax is in Norway and Sweden, which has a direct effect on how much employees must be paid in order for them to be able to take half of that home, which in turn has a direct effect in prices.

  21. The goal, as demonstrated by George Orwell is to create ideological blind spots, areas where people simply lack the words and concepts to engage.

    For example, back in 1776 the idea of a colony going independent while its “parent” remained healthy and strong was something most people could not wrap their brains around.

    Not long after they were bum-fuzzled about the idea of a government with no king.

    Which points to one major reason the SJWs are driven to reign in SF/F, the literature of unthinkable thoughts.

    1. The goal, as demonstrated by George Orwell is to create ideological blind spots, areas where people simply lack the words and concepts to engage.

      What worries me is the way that the very tools to try to understand meaning when there’s a vocabulary lack–or difference, the differences really bite because you can have an entire conversation and then find out that each side was saying something entirely different.

      My goodness, do I hate the “oh, I understand, we really agree!” shtick where they try to play word games to show we “really” agree. No, manipulating symbols doesn’t change the thing being described. Even if you can push it around until the same symbols are being used for opposite things, they are still opposite. All that’s happened is the disagreement has been papered over.

    2. Yup.

      I know this for a fact because in their innocent beginnings, the propagators of PC were so childish as to admit they were trying to make me unable to think thoughtcrime.

  22. The sterile tend to envy (and therefore resent) the fertile/creative. They desperately need to define “normal” so that they don’t feel out of place.

  23. I can’t actually compare, because I haven’t really seen either one, but this sounds just as much like “Socialist Realist” art (so-called) under the Soviet Union as it does like any contemporary S-J-W equivalent (Social Justice Realism??).
    It wasn’t even “real” and vivid and full-blooded propaganda, but inane things like paintings of factories, and tractors plowing collective farm fields. “Sterile, puzzled nothingness” comes as close as anything I’ve heard; nice package, at best, but nothing inside. (It did sail past the Soviet “artistic” committees easily.)

    Same symptom, same disease. Maybe a worse pathology.

    Its “journalistic” equivalent, by the way, is what filled the front pages of a typical newspaper; “Glorious comrades of 577th Tractor Brigade overfulfill the Plan!” etc. So smart Russians (etc.) learned to read their paper back to front, getting to tidbits like “Pensioner Nikita Khrushchev dies at age XX” on the last page first.

    Sounds like we’ve been doing a vague equivalent with our own “mainstream” culture here; reading it back to front, according to what “tastes good” (Baen slogan from ’way back when) or simply what’s fun, instead of obsessing over its Tractor Brigades.
    Their “self-publishing” (literal translation of “samizdat”) was done in fear of the State and with typewriters, but otherwise it seems pretty parallel to ours (except ours is now actually capable of making you money if you do it well).

    Does anyone else notice any affinity between the SJWs and [1] Mean Girls All Grown Up or [2] The New(est) McCarthyism? Because I sure do…

        1. I don’t have any examples, but he probably was a time or two. And rather than spend days researching to find out I opted to use the CYA statement.

          1. Tailgunner Joe (odd that such an honorable combat position should become a term of derision when what it indicates is a profound ignorance of matters military) was often right for the wrong reasons: his “proof” did not support his conclusion.

            This created a structural weakness which his opponents could employ to discredit him and by association, all who shared his concern over hostile infiltration of our government and media.

            1. that and he acted in ways that no one wanted to defend. I’ve said his biggest crime was being an insufferable ass.
              BTW, had a great uncle blacklisted for being a commie. He pretty much was. And the thing the McCarthy haters forget is the blacklists were maintained by the left/dems. Many of those on the lists were brought back to the light by a conservative (like Orson Bean being brought back by Ed Sullivan)

              1. Oddly, the “Have you no Shame” remark which gets publicized so much is often stripped of context. At the time, McCarthy was defending the gay staffer he had. (Alas, he did it by outing someone else’s gay staffer). But the fact remains that he HAD one and was defending him, something that Liberals would probably be incapable of believing.

    1. I actually read a manifesto that called “mundane SF” the socialist realism of SF.

      (Mind you, I suspect he meant “social realism” but it was odd that he let it stand that long.0

      1. Socialist-realist SF..?
        Baen Books Taste Good.
        Mundane SF Tastes Like Tofurkey.
        (Unless “mundane SF” –??– is implausibly better than it sounds.)

        Soviet Russia did produce some decent SF despite itself; the Strugatskys’ “Roadside Picnic” comes to mind. Deeply weird, but good.

        1. Now I am pondering a Socialist Realism equivalent of Spinrad’s Iron Dream.

          Given trends in Big Publisher SF it might prove hard to parody.

  24. Didn’t read all the discussion, but did anyone else see the reports that Sweden is probably going to be a third world nation by 2030? They’re apparently suffering huge brain drain amongst other issues.

  25. I’m sure this will get lost – but Hoyt, did you look at the site you linked to? The vast majority of it is misogynistic ramblings, including the idea that all women are bitches unless they find a man attractive (because that’s the only thing that makes a woman behave). He said that.

    I’ve always respected you, but look at your sources. While the article itself is not objectionable, linking people to a site that clearly espouses hatred of women is not a good idea. Don’t give him a platform – and don’t give liberals ammunition.

      1. I haven’t read Roosh, just read about him on other blogs. He’s apparently reasonably well known in the manosphere and the PUA communities (lots of overlap between the two, but they’re not identical).

        I wouldn’t be surprised to find that he’s frequently undiplomatic when discussing sexual dynamics, that’s a common feature. Whether it’s justified as a tactic to break through feminist indoctrination, or a sign of misogyny, or some combination thereof (or something else altogether), I couldn’t say.

        1. I haven’t read him either *but* since there are women that respond to being told that men are on the average stronger than women by saying “that’s sexist”, I’m inclined to take anything said about Roosh with a “ton of salt”.

      1. On the positive side, it does mean you not only know where they’ll be attacking but will have ample opportunity to mine them.

        1. A quick comment on “respect”. It’s not just progressives and SJWs that use it, but there is more than one subculture in the USA that use it on a daily basis, and if someone comes from one of these subcultures {or like me, interacts with a couple of them}, then “respect” might be used instead of “admire”.

          I know I’d probably use “respect” instead of “admire”. Their meanings may be close, but they’re not exact.

          I would in particular be careful of using “admire” in a conversation with a female I wasn’t acquainted with. Respect, in a lot of ways would be the better term, and one I’d use in a similar situation of Ele’s arrival.

          Not that I’m defending Ele. But, to be clear, no one is going to mistake me for either an SJW or progressive.

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