Tilting at Windmills

Cultural movements have a certain life cycle. If you read enough history, you see it. Because humans are the same all through history, the history of ideas that excite people tend to follow the same points.

It starts with enthusiasm and iconoclastic elan. That is the idea is so strange and far fetched for that society that only people who arrive at their positions by difficult individual thought and decision think it’s a good idea.

In fact, people who think this is a good idea, might get called names or ostracized.

Then slowly the idea gains converts. When it’s new and vibrant, the converts will be young and also vibrant, the movers and shakers of the society.

If the idea is not completely insane, it will then become more and more accepted, as these young and vibrant people gain power.

But if it is still moderately insane – say Marxism – and won’t work in the real world, when tried, it will then become ossified. The only people who still believe in it are the ones who were too old to change when it proved non-viable, and possibly a whole bunch of youngish people who were taught the idea as a legacy, inherited from parents or grandparents (or in the case of Marxism teachers) and who refuse to evaluate it on its merits, because then it might prove wrong, which would force them to go against received tradition, which none of them is prepared – emotionally – to do.

This is when you get the rump end of an ideology, the straggling, delusional end.

It was about something like this that Cervantes wrote Don Quixote.

I read Don Quixote when I was seven or eight, and I’ve watched one of the movies. It left very little to no impression. (I have the same problem with Foundation. No idea why.) So my memory of what it says might or might not be true.

However, if I remember, Don Quixote read a lot about the age of chivalry and decided to be a knight errant, at a time when knight errants were well and truly gone. He then proceeded to go over the country side, mistaking various signs of modernity for long gone mythical enemies. So for instance windmills were thought to be giants.

There have been, I know, because I studied them, various interpretations of Don Quixote, including that he was mad, or that he was just playing a game. Faced with a world that had escaped the framework in which he was prepared to understand it: a world that made no sense and gave him no status, he chose to go into the country side and battle imaginary monsters.

This gave him an illusion of control over a world to which he could no longer adapt.

Yesterday, while on facebook, reading a link that Brad Torgersen had put up, relating to the Hugos and science fiction (I didn’t have much time on the net yesterday and it will be spotty all week, mostly because of access/connectivity issues as we change services) the thread got invaded by a young lady (ah! She wouldn’t like that appellation) lecturing us on how the use of Social Justice Warrior was wrong and shaming, and it meant we were all wing-nuts or something.

The funny thing is the longer the thread went on the more she revealed herself for a stereotypical SJW. She believed science fiction needs to be more about underrepresented races/LGBT/other because “people can only identify with characters like themselves” for instance.

Also, of course, she didn’t answer my comment that I often have gay characters, but somehow I get more grief from SJWs than the right wing people. With a few and rather nutty exceptions, right wingers might say “I don’t like this type of thing” but they don’t call me evil, a Nazi or stupid. All of which the SJWs call me for doing gay characters in a way that’s not “progressive.”

That’s because it’s not really about writing the other, for them. It’s about writing the other as a Marxist class, in which each individual is a widget, tainted with class guilt or accruing class credit due to what the “class” is considered and what it has suffered historically.

Though Marxism has proven itself a thoroughly unviable economic and social theory, by impoverishing some of the world’s richest countries and filling graves with over 100 million humans, they learned it as the frame work through which to see the world.

They can’t see the world in any other way. And anyway, if they managed to adapt to this “Marx is dead and so are his theories” world, they’d have to break ties with the old power structure, which would mean they would be cast adrift in a world with no ties and no clear guide to right and wrong.

So instead of trying to adapt, instead of seeing what’s before their eyes: a world that’s unimaginably rich with possibilities; where Marx might be dead and we might be going through a rough patch, but the future of humanity is full of possibilities, where men and women are for the first time freed to be themselves in anyway they want to be (short of the truly impossible) where more people are fed than ever before, where even the “poor” in developed countries live better than kings, they choose to tilt at windmills.

The windmills they’re tilting at are the thoughts and artworks of those who don’t subscribe to their philosophy.

Like Don Quixote they’ll do some damage to whatever stands between them and the monsters of their imagination.

They’ve already done considerable damage to ever field they’ve taken over: education, arts, government, entertainment, even religion.

But in the end, those fields will recover. Partly driven by need to circumvent the damage they cause, people have created other avenues, other means to these pursuits.

The rest of society is routing against the madmen (and madwomen) shouting and throwing fits while charging at the windmills.

But the dying rump end of socialist-communist-Marxist-Leninism can’t do anything but keep charging.

Charge all you want. We’ll repair the windmill sails and life will go on, except for the occasional nuisance of yet another scare-crow would be knight, calling itself the triple lie – social justice warrior: any justice is individual. Punishing individuals for their ancestors actions or the actions of those who look like them is by definition INJUSTICE. As for warriors, they couldn’t fight their way out of wet paperback – sticking a lance through a working part.

And eventually the dying rump will be gone, too ineffective to even annoy us.

And we – and the windmills, which are good and useful portions of society – will go on.

In the end, we win, they lose.

Be not afraid.

199 responses to “Tilting at Windmills

  1. I found that as of a few years ago I had absolutely zero interest in who was nominated or had won the Hugos, much as I had lost any attraction to attending WorldCons. I grew up as a SF fan who wore that outsider status proudly. When it came to not joining any club that would have me for a member, this was the club I joined anyway.

    No more. It has mutated into something ugly, something the protagonists of great stories once fought against. Recently, despite being an atheist by practice myself, I found myself rather offended by a book in which every bad person had one thing in common: religious faith. This was true both of the big bad villain and the young woman who was coerced by laying on her faith to betray her closest friends. By the end of the book the obnoxiousness of the premise and how heavy handedly it was applied made me wonder if I could expect more of the same if I read other works by the author. A few weeks later I began hearing her name a lot more. Not because of anything she’d written but because of the situations she had created in real life, notably in regard to the upcoming WorldCon and Hugos.

    At any given moment I have a backlog of at least 200 books waiting for my attention. I really don’t have time for her axe grinding BS, so those books were erased from the Nook. Life is too short to put up with this sort of thing when seeking entertainment.

  2. Josh Kruschke

    🙂

  3. I would agree except for the examples of many civilizations that have come and gone from before recorded history, each, I am sure, convinced they will survive forever as their mainframes are slowly destroyed by cancerous self-destructive behavior of those that should be part of their framework. There are those that have survived, at least in part. Thus, as one who was once a practicing oncologist, and once a hospice director, I would caution those who are certain we will survive no matter what, or certain we are doomed, that there is no certainty in this world. Our efforts, as well as luck and chance, will be the determining factors.

    • Whenever anyone quotes that alleged quote from Tacitus about how children are unruly, I do not point out the problems with its origin, I say, “And look what happened to Rome.”

      • “Already long ago, from when we sold our vote to no man, the people have advocated our duties; for the people who once upon a time handed out military command, high offices, legions, everything, now restrains itself and anxiously hopes for just two things: bread and circuses.”
        – Juvenal, Satire X,

        In two or three generations Marxism will be no more, but the call for bread and circuses will endure after the SJW is not even a footnote of history.

        Why, yes, I’m a pessimist. How did you know?

        • Oh, it will fade, then come back. Envy and the lust for other people’s stuff is perennial. ti’s this dividing people in “classes and the UPPER class calling for all sorts of crazy sh*t that’s particularly marxist.”

        • Not much of a pessimist if you think Marxism will be gone in two or three generations.

          • It will be gone. At least as a believable theory in the US. In other countries… (shrugs.)

            • I don’t care if Marxism is a disproven theory.I’d like all the Marxists and Marxist enablers out of power with the worst of them killed. Hung by the neck so that it’s clear that being a Marxist is dangerous to one’s health.

        • We moved as the Spirit listed. They never altered their pace,
          Being neither cloud nor wind-borne like the Gods of the Market Place,
          But they always caught up with our progress, and presently word would come
          That a tribe had been wiped off its icefield, or the lights had gone out in Rome.

    • The Other Sean

      Ancient civilizations with mainframes?

    • The possibility exists, yes. However, the framework which has been created here is a beacon to anyone who will wish to rebuild it.

      The main fear is that not enough people will care to do the building/repairing before the slope downward into apathy becomes too steep to stop. If that happens, it will have to wait until people are forced by circumstances to start building again.

    • PFUI. OTOH our particular country has been worse off (see Wilson’s time.) Are we in deep trouble? Sure. But the tide is already turning. This particular set of wreckers has managed in three generations to become as stupid and incompetent as European kings in a millennium.

    • One civilization dies, another is born sooner or later. I am not always optimistic that you (USA), or any parts of Europe, will survive uninterrupted. But I’m pretty sure some parts will rise again even if the worst happens now. People remember, and USA has been an undeniable success. Some group will try to replicate that even if you do fall. Sooner or later. Nothing is permanent, not the renaissances nor the dark ages.

      Whatever happens, the most important part is keeping the ideas, and ideals, alive and known.

  4. And here I thought you were going to discuss the passing fad for wild farms.

    • Go to smalldeadanimals.com and find their “We don’t need no stinking windmills” articles. They’ve got some real, ah, winners. Plus photos of flaming turbines on sticks (oops. Too much wind!)

      • But . . . but a windmill is less than half the cost of hooking up to the electric lines that are only ten feet away! /sarc

        And the power company wonders why people don’t want their services. (Our application is pumping water from the creek to the top of the orchard/pasture.)

        • Even for pumping water, windmills are very maintenance intensive. If you use it a lot, the leathers on the cup have to be replaced at least twice a year. And then there is the problem of getting oil up to the gearbox. Those platforms at the top are very narrow………

      • It’s amazing how many flaming wind turbine on sticks pictures you see.

    • Are wild farms where we keep party animals?

  5. Another reason Marxism won’t go away is that those who cling to it really believe it’s as noble and special as they are. They imagine what they believe is “a better world,” and anyone who fails to recognize the beauty of that world is an evil person. In fact, their blueprint is so anti-human and other-worldly that it takes an authoritarian government to impose and prop it up.

    • yet another is that giving it up, if they were useful idiots, means they are accessories before the fact to mass murder, without producing any of the promised Utopia they stifled their consciences with.

  6. As for why Foundation left you cold, I can suggest some possible answers. I had the same reaction in recent years when re-reading the series. I found myself wondering why I liked them so much then and so little now.
    My answer is collectivism: the whole underlying concept is the leftist notion of the masses. There is no room for individuals there (not unless he is a mutant dictator). And the stories, filling in the premise, indeed have hardly any memorable individuals in them.

    • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

      The Second Foundation *Must* be destroyed.

      Seriously, the Second Foundation was shown as wanting to be the “Secret Masters” of the Galaxy because the “little people” couldn’t understand what’s best for them.

      Oh, I also found Gaia not much better. IE a Group Mind wanting to make the rest of the Galaxy to “think the right way”.

      • The second foundation was a classic example of the kind of authoritarian technocrats that every statist desires to be. I found it ironic that Asimov almost got why this wouldn’t work (black swan events like the mule) but wasn’t able to grasp that the mule and his like were inevitable.

        • He did, after all, write the basic premise before chaos theory was a thing.

        • Christopher M. Chupik

          And the longer things went on, the more “Mules” would crop up and throw the Seldon Plan out of whack.

        • He got it. His solutions were just unrealistic.

          In the fourth book (i.e. the first post-trilogy novel, written years later) one of the things that tips the Second Foundation to the fact that the new group is intervening is the fact that post-Mule there are zero deviations from the plan. So he appears to have understood that the deviations would keep on coming (and progressively get further and further away from the “ideal”).

          But his initial solution – the Second Foundation – was essentially a conspiracy that was to run for a millennia without being corrupted in the meantime, or otherwise deviating from the plan. His follow-up solution was arguably a group of non-humans (having sufficiently drifted away from humanity that they weren’t really familiar with the human experience; ironically, he makes the point with the Solarian child in the fifth novel without realizing that it also applies to the current galactic puppetmasters) being entrusted with the future of humanity. And they, unsurprisingly, decide to make humanity just like them.

        • Christopher M. Chupik

          Which is also the reason I don’t believe in conspiracy theories. Too many things can go wrong and nobody can anticipate them all.

          • Carpooled with a conspiracy enthusiast. He would talk about world controlling plans passed down unchanged, generation to generation, since before the Syro-Phoenicians. Then he would change subjects and complain about his older children never doing what he wanted.
            Ummm…..okaaaaay.

    • I should re-read those and see what I think. It was a good 20 years ago, and I bet I’ll feel similarly.

    • Having read Asimov’s autobiographies, part of the blame for the ‘bad parts’ of Foundation was the editor John W. Campbell. The man’s opinion that white men would rule the universe flavored his selection of stories ‘fit’ for publication. Now, in comparison to SJWs, his influence and ‘steering’ were somewhat mild, and his belief in humanity’s goodness fit the mold for ‘speculative fiction’ of the time.
      I think Marxism’s failings are best encapsulated by John Lenon’s ‘Imagine’. …imagine no possessions… hope you will join US… sung by a man with a penthouse overlooking Central Park. And, no, he never brought any homeless bums home for dinner (although perhaps Yoko’s cooking was bad).

      • Except, he was living in London at the time…

        • That just makes it worse! After preaching to the choir about sharing and caring… He leaves London and then buys a penthouse overlooking Central Park.
          Do as I say, not as I do. I saw a blurb before posting, one dinner in Hawaii for Obama is greater than the typical ‘Middle Class’ person will get from his new tax the 1% proposals. Equal outcomes for all, but some outcomes are more ‘special’ than others.

  7. C4C

    • Today’s code word: Rhododendron

    • Christopher M. Chupik

      Remember what the Dormouse said.

      • Twinkle twinkle, little bat.
        How I wonder where you’re at.

      • Or what the Eagle did. It’s much of a muchness.

        • We are nothing without the sky. Look up.

          • Rubies, emeralds, and topazes. No diamonds.

            No sign of Lucy, either.

            • Luuucy, I’m home!

              • you got some splainin to do

                • Tu loco la cabesa!

                  • No cab, thanks, I ride my motorcycle to work

                    • It was one of Ricky’s favorite sayings when Lucy got him spun up.
                      You are crazy in the head, for those who don’t habla espanol.

                    • I work with several mexicans (with green cards, though the chemist has started citizenship … heck, she has no accent at all, growing up in Decatur) and I toss poor translation back at them all the time.
                      Qué pasa?
                      “No pasta, I got rice instead”

                    • William O. B'Livion

                      I was going to, but we got a bit of snow last night, and there were reports of slippery conditions on the highways.

                    • I got a smaller, more nimble bike for those conditions, (700 pounds of slightly top heavy sport-tourer an ice do not mix well… Now if there is 3 or more inches of snow, go slow, everything will be fine) and I avoid the highways when it is icy.
                      I went 4 years without an operating enclosed vehicle. I only missed work when the other guys on my shift were unable to get in (One lived in a bowl and couldn’t walk out of his apartment complex, let alone drive)

                    • Two questions: would a bike for those conditions be something along the lines of a dual-sport/enduro? And am I right in assuming that even with the right bike, riding in snowy conditions would be an activity for very experienced riders only? I need a new vehicle in the near future, and I only have a little experience on a bike.

                    • I have an old Dual-sport and a small street bike that fit the need. I’ve been riding a XL250s, 1980 model, and I picked up a ’78 CB400Tii (with a Ti motor) that will do as well, once I get it registered.
                      Yeah, I’d not recommend trying it if you were to have never ridden in snow. Best is to ride some off road in the snow and ice to get used to how things work and don’t work. If all your bike experience is already off road then the transition is easier. Mudding also helps.
                      One time, when the roads were bad and the truck was broke, I used the shoulders to get to work and the several miles of interstate one the route I used the service road instead. Did fine until I got to the parking lot at work …. it was a skating rink.
                      Getting to my parking spot took several tries.
                      another time, The roads were mostly clear so I rode the ST1100 (730 pounds gassed up) in and it snowed before I left, hiding the ice patches. I dropped the bike before getting out of the parking lot. Then again on Main Street in Mansfield. I then waited for the now near blizzard conditions to put about 3 inches of snow down and then continued. That amount gives some traction on the ice so they don’t trip you up.

                      It also helps to be an Odd … but you got that covered.

                    • Has anyone told you that you’re nuts? “Near blizzard conditions” on a bike?

                      Yeesh.

                    • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

                      “Near blizzard conditions on a bike?” Driving a car in “near blizzard conditions” is crazy (even when there’s valid reasons).

                    • hry, it was clear when I rode into work, and when the unpredicted snow started our way, I tried to leave before it got there … to quote a co-worker “Too Late!” Then I forgot being a damned yankee and tried to leave with only a half inch dusting on things.
                      I coulda finished the night out and not fallen, but nooooo.

                    • oh, and the look I got from the cops was great.

                    • Slippery conditions? We had reports of falling concrete!

                    • William O. B'Livion

                      JP: I currently have a Triumph Tiger and a Land Cruiser. My commute is 16 miles over surface streets (through Denver) or 20 miles of Highway. The highway will be *less* icy than the streets. I’ve considered a Dual Sport in the 350-450 CC range, but the Land Cruiser just makes more sense.

                      I rode for about 6 years with no car, but that was in the SF, CA area.

                      FRO: Yes, a dual sport would be best for those conditions, and the more dirt-bikeish the better, although you’d want different tires.

                      I don’t think that riding in icy conditions is smart unless you have to, and it is certainly for the more experienced.

                      The only nice thing about a bike is you can get a cheap bike and a decent “well, I drive it when the weather’s bad” car for about what you can get a decent car for, and then you will almost always have *something* running…

                    • Yeah, seeing as we go years between really bad snows, it is easier for me here, though if back home in Michigan I’d still ride when the roads were clear. I’d likely make an older Dual Sport into an ATC so I could keep it licensed (debated whether to make it a reverse trike)
                      I don’t like them, but the smaller cruisers do well too (low seat and even a 650 Savage is rather light) and for tires I have never gotten special ones but the CB does have some cheap Shinko trials type tires for a Scrambler look, and they worked well in the last ice storm we had, getting me around the ranch property. The XL had street tires on it for much of my playing in the snow, though it’s road biased dual-sport tires did better in the white.

                    • William O. B'Livion

                      “Near blizzard conditions” on a bike?

                      May of 2004 (IIRC, might have been 2005) we (the Wife and I) had taken a trip from SF to Chicago for a thing, and on the way a snow storm decided to visit Denver for a couple days. Two up on the Triumph.

                      It was bad at 5000 feet, going through the passes was a bit scary.

                      The next day we drove from Green River Utah to San Francisco. 853 miles.

                    • The banner pic on st-owners.com right now (as it usually is during winter) is a shot of bikes that got caught by the white while on a trip. Some of the guys and gals have been similarly caught in those other wintery months like July.

                • adventuresfantastic

                  Wait, I though splaining was bad. The SJWs said so.

                  • No, no, no. MANsplaining is bad. Lucy was a woman. She is free to explain to Ricky why he is a cismale gendernormative fascist anytime she wants.

            • The Other Sean

              Lucy on the field, with football.

            • There is a star that is entirely made of carbon… compressed to the most rigid structure it can manage… a 2,500 mile diameter diamond. They named it Lucy.

      • Feed your head.

  8. It is important to note that SJWs are having some successes. Or at least are rushing in to claim the glory of campaigns that are vaguely allied to theirs. Gay marriage for example. The result is that they can seem reasonable to people who don’t have the time/energy/desire to investigate more deeply. This means that they potentially gain allies (aka dupes) who support them because they heard “equality is good and fair” or some other plausible slogan and stick with the people who utter it.

    The problem for the SJWs is that they can’t win in any place where there is actual measurement. Instapundit had this yesterday:
    http://news.yahoo.com/u-academia-fields-cherish-sheer-genius-shun-women-120644574.html
    “The fields whose members said they most valued sheer intellectual brilliance such as philosophy, physics and math were the most likely to have fewer women in their ranks. The disciplines in which the “spark of genius” was least emphasized such as education, psychology and anthropology had greater numbers of women.”

    In other words any place where they can dumb down the standards they can prosper. Once they get to places where things can’t be dumbed down such as engineering – we’d prefer our bridges/aircraft/computers to be reliable thank you very much, we don’t care about the gonads, melanin … of the creators – they fail.

    They also have had their sense of humor surgically removed and by far the best way to get the regular people without time/energy… to stop supporting them is to mock them widely, loudly and frequently. The SJW foaming at the mouth over a joke is not a pleasant sight and it causes them to look extremely unattractive.

    More mockery please.

    • You might find this interesting… and it pretty much mirrors my observations of the field over the last 30 years or so. Competent female technicians are RARE – and there’s no equal opportunity program that can take someone without talent or aptitude and turn them into competent programmers or techs.

      (My own criteria for telling if someone’s going to make it as a tech is to ask them how many computers they have, and how many they’ve built. If they don’t start blathering about what they built and why, they’re not going to last.)

      And the idea bout anti-patterns,,, she might have something there.

      View story at Medium.com

      “The “women in tech” experience is not monolithic — not for the women who feel uncomfortable in the tech community, and not for the women who feel comfortable in it, either. None of our stories are universal, but when we look at any landscape of stories from enough of a remove, we begin to see patterns. Right now, the dominant narrative about women in tech is overwhelmingly woven of antipatterns. We know a lot about how to go from problems to bad solutions, but if we’re going to make a tech community where people feel welcome, we have to figure out how to go from problems to good solutions — and disparaging women like me as gender traitors makes those of us who aren’t too socially thickheaded to know better far more reluctant to speak up so that there can even be a narrative about amelioration patterns. This isn’t “f**k you, got mine,” this is “damn you, why won’t you let me give you what I have?” It doesn’t mean shutting down the discussion about antipatterns — those discussions are important and necessary, and should continue — but it does mean not closing the floor to conversation about what positive patterns already exist.”

    • Note that the headline says that the fields shun women, not that the women shun the fields which I believe is more accurate.

      • Yup. I was totally encouraged to be an engineer or scientist or programmer, and I got good grades and had pretty high math skills. But it just doesn’t interest me enough. If there were an overall shortage of hands, that’d be one thing; but there isn’t, so why try to be something that bores the heck out of me?

        • Because equality! And diversity! You should totally try to get into a career field that bores you because it’d be good for…

          Well… nobody, really.

          I had this sort of discussion, about people getting into fields that interested them instead of being more or less ‘assigned’ due to gender. And the overall consensus of those opposing the idea was that it was important for diversity to encourage women. It didn’t matter whether the individual wanted it – what was important was representation.

          Frankly, I’d rather have someone in the job that loves the job and will do well, as opposed to someone hating the job but being there to fill an external, arbitrary quota imposed by someone who had no idea of what the job entails, or what aptitudes and interests would be needed to do well in it..

          • kibbutzim were asked why they didn’t simply assign the women to the tasks that men were doing.

          • I find it depressing,though embematically typical, that the SJWs cantake a lovely idea like oening up opportunities for people and use it as an excuse to boos people around.

            • If you look at their desires as not being about results, but instead about being able to control people they don’t like, their actions make much more sense.

              • And one has to wonder f that is because they ALWAYS were primarily about control, or if the consistently diappointing results of their ideas has driven them in that direction because it’s what is left.

                • Possibly it’s driven off all the people who actually wanted to improve things and left the field to the tyrants.

            • *mildly sad*

              First read the “cantake” as “cantank”– as in, the act of being cantankerous.
              Thought you were proposing a solution to SJWs…..

      • In the last three decades of working in IT, I can count the number of competent female technicians I’ve worked with on one hand, with fingers left over.

        Competent in this case being (a) knowledgeable about tools, (b) the hardware involved, (c) the software involved, and (d) being willing to remedy their lack of knowledge at need.

        There simply aren’t that many lady geeks around. 😦

  9. Christopher M. Chupik

    Take the Left’s racism narrative (please!). The Academy is now a bunch of white supremacists because there’s no (insert PC euphemism of your choice) up for Oscars, even though they chose 12 Years a Slave just last year. American Sniper and Lone Survivor are racist because they show Americans fighting Pashtuns and Arabs. Of course, the fact that America’s enemies in those two conflicts were Pashtuns and Arabs is of purely tertiary consideration.

    • That’s because everyone knows that Brown cultures are better, probably even superior, because, um, because, BROWN!!

      • Christopher M. Chupik

        Idiot from Twitter (name removed for his own good): “If you see ‘American Sniper’ in IMAX 3D the bullets come out of the screen and go straight towards brown people.”

        Of course, if the movie had depicted Arabs as lily-white, the same people would be shrieking about whitewashing.

        • Why am I reminded of the scene in Stirling’s Nantucket series where the black Coast Guard cadet throws in with the villain to save the Bronze Age “black Egyptians” and is horribly disappointed when they not only aren’t black but horribly racist slave takers.

          • Christopher M. Chupik

            That reminds me of the Afrocentric loon who complained bitterly on a comic forum a while back about all the “historically inaccurate” “White Arabs” in Ancient Egypt, as depicted in Shazam’s origin. He trotted out the old “Black Land” misinterpretation and focused on the Nubian Pharaohs as being the norm instead of outliers.

            Of course, the “Black Land” the Egyptians referred to was the fertile lands around the Nile, as opposed to the “Red Land” of the desert wasteland. And the Afrocentricists don’t seem to realize when they use the term “Cushite” that one of the etymologies of “Cush” is “wretched”. But then, if they understood real history at all, they wouldn’t be Afrocentricists. It’s a shame that the legitimate study of the sub-Saharan African kingdoms has been obscured with nonsense. There really was some interesting history happening in Africa.

            • There is a terrific book, which I have around here somewhere, called NOT OUT OF AFRICA, the gist of which is that Afrocentrism is a rehash of old pre-rosetta stone rosicrucian fantasies about Egypt. So, they can’t even come up with their own Ubermensch fantasies, they had to steal some from WHITE PEOPLE.

              or, more probably, they got them from White Liberal Academics

      • White was better back in the days when having lily white skin meant you didn’t have to work out in the fields because you were rich.
        Now that people of European ancestry use darkness of tan to indicate wealth–you have to be wealthy to lay out in the sun instead of working in a cubical farm–brown is better. You can’t criticize your betters because they’re better than you are.
        So yeah, wealthy=brown skin=better than you. Some people need to stop applying their societal signalling systems to other societies. It’s, um, what’s the word? Where’s a SJW when you need one? Neocolonialist or some such, right?

        • Cultural appropriation? Paternalism? White man’s burden? Ethnocentrism?

          (The volunteering of these words and phrase should not be construed as an admission of affiliation with SJWs or anyone who looks like them.)

    • On the upside, watching the SJW devour their own is much more entertaining that most of what comes out of Hollywood. Pass the popcorn, please.

  10. I really hope Sarah is right. I really hope that these Marxist idiots will see the error of their ways. I really hope that the schools have not indoctrinated the youth to the point where they’re incapable of believing anything other than the leftist drivel they’ve been fed. I really hope that it doesn’t come to what I fear it may. I really hope that, but I’m not sure that it’s actually possible.

    In every instance I’m aware of the fall of a form of government has been accompanied by bloodshed to a greater or lesser degree. Even the fall of the Soviet Union, which many credit as having occurred peacefully, saw Russian citizens armed with rocks heading off a siege of the Kremlin to keep Boris Yeltsin in power. Nicolae Ceausescu was executed after an assault on Communist Party headquarters in Romania. This was the “bloodless” fall of Communism in Europe. It made a good story, but it was NOT bloodless.

    We are all, I assume, familiar with the story of the American Revolution. Most of us are probably also familiar with the leftist fiction that it was not a revolution at all. (And yes, it did change politics fundamentally in this country. Political power is no longer inherited. Granted, family members do sometimes get elected to political offices. John Adams and John Quincy Adams. George HW Bush and George W Bush. But the men elected between them were of different families. There is no king here. There is not hereditary aristocracy. Yes, there are still rich people because it wasn’t the MARXIST revolution. They need to get over themselves.) The amount of bloodshed then was fairly minimal compared to what it could have been. It still happened. The Magna Carta was not achieved without cost.

    I may be the biggest pessimist in history. Lord knows I can look at the window today and watch the snow fall and be glad that my daughters are warm and safe with full bellies and no violence in their neighborhood. I don’t WANT a fight, but I don’t see us winning without one.

    Some have speculated that a fight would only lead to a dictatorship regardless of who won. They seem to forget that the United States was founded after a fight. It wouldn’t be pretty, but it doesn’t necessarily have to end in domination. The Founding Fathers didn’t always get along, but they found a way and we still can. Will it be a different way? Probably. Will it mean giving up our existing Constitution? I hope not, but maybe. Will it mean giving the leftists what they want? Not if we win the war. Wars are about achieving political solutions when compromise is no longer possible. All we have to do to avoid a dictatorship is to preserve the right of the other side to vote and elect their others to spread their BS. Separation of powers will still be important and so will finding a way to do away with the concept of “positive rights.” We can win though and we can preserve our way of life. Don’t believe the leftist argument to the contrary. It’s propaganda designed to keep you from fighting.

    • “Will it mean giving up our existing Constitution? I hope not, but maybe. ”
      ” All we have to do to avoid a dictatorship is to preserve the right of the other side to vote and elect their others to spread their BS.”

      I hope you meant prevent rather than preserve, but if we don’t change the Constitution so that only the productive can vote we won’t be able to preserve anything. The root cause of the problems we have now is that the Constitution was never made for a “warm body democracy” which is what we have now.

      • If you want to prevent people who don’t work from voting I’m good with that. If they won’t pay to support the system they have no business influencing it. That much being sad I do not and will not ever support a one party state even if the only party allowed is my own.

        • Eh, our system seems designed to produce two parties. Once we had one, and it fissioned, and then we had a third party that managed to drain the life out of one of the fission’s results.

    • Oh my. Eric Holder, Lois Lerner up against a wall. There’d be many a dry eye around here.

      • I dunno. The tears of happiness might just create enough of a lake to float a small aircraft carrier on.

    • Christopher M. Chupik

      Lots of Marxist idiots will never see the error of their ways. But if enough people just ignore them as the morons they are, they won’t matter.

      • Some of them can’t be ignored because of the power they wield.

        • Those individuals need to be removed. THEN we can ignore the small fry.

          • We need to get rid of all the bureaucrats. Do you know how much power any ‘crat has? A man with a clipboard can go to a farm and tell the farmer how to do things. If he won’t our leviathan of a gov’t can squash him flat. Just look at the disparity of resources. A lawyer for a person vs the entire DoJ.We need to trim down our govt down to a size where it can’t stomp an individual flat.
            Look what happened to Dinesh D’Souza.

            • I agree. “Lop off the head, gut the thing and feed it to the cats” does sound like a workable solution to the large government problem but we need to find a way to do it.

    • (Waggles hand) It wasn’t a revolution in the same way that the French ans Russian Revolution were. We weren’t looking to overthrow the king and take over the whole shooting match–we were looking to get out from under the Brits and make our own way in the world.

      • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        And the rebellion was lead by the governments of the colonies so after the win, there was no need for setting up new governments for the colonies.

        The big problem was creating a Federal government and we did it twice with little problem (ie no fighting).

    • The problem is that a free people want to go off and do their own thing. That means politics is left to the hands of those who want the power, and they can’t be trusted without constant supervision.

  11. On SJWs and SF: My impression is that they really hate Heinlein. I believe the charge is mainly sexism but I don’t know. As I may have mentioned once or twice now, I’m currently reading his books for the first time. And right away I was kind of puzzled. He’s writing–perfectly naturally, as part of the story and not as a mental sledgehammer–things that ought to make them jump for joy.

    Spacesuit, as you already know and I just found out, features a girl who is both tougher and smarter (and more childish and impulsive) than the boy narrator. Both of them could be any race you please. And there’s an alien who looks like a strong female character and turns out to have 12 genders in her species, of which she is not-quite-female, and so on.

    Harsh Mistress (I’m not done yet, don’t tell me the ending) features an inter-racial society, where women are completely autonomous and hold a good deal of power, and there are about 5 creative kinds of marriage, none of which are the usual Earth kind. The narrator is a ‘disabled’ guy named Manuel.

    None of them have actually read these books, have they?

    Or is it that some of them have, but hate the self-reliance and independence themes so much that they don’t notice or ignore it?

    This is turning out to be quite the interesting reading project.

    • Heinlein hatred is another legacy of the Vietnam War and his refusal to buy into the anti-war movement.

    • But why would anyone waste their time actually reading anything Heinlein wrote when everyone important knows that he was a racist misogynist warmongering old white guy?
      Side note, I am green with envy over your experience reading Robert for the first time, dang it.

    • Did you see the David Brin piece Insty linked to a few days ago, where he declared Heinlein would be a Democrat if he were alive today?

      I LOL’d. The man who explicitly said his rifle was for shooting Communists would be part of the party that is run by them? The man who wrote characters of all types and races and wrote them as people rather than caricatures would be part of the Identity Politics Party? The man who helped kick start SDI would be part of the unilateral disarmament party? The man who feared the US would become a religious dictatorship would join the party of Barack Scudder Obama?

      I don’t know that he’d be a Republican, but I’m sure he wouldn’t be a Democrat.

      • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        But but… It’s the Republicans who are the Party of Nehemiah Scudder!!!! [Sarcasm]

      • Nope, I’ll have to find it. I’ve read 3 books by this guy and there’s no way. Ha! He seems like a libertarian more than anything else, if you can even put a label on it. My betting would be that, along with my husband, he would have gotten disgusted with Republicans for being too big-government and gone independent.

        • No. Brin is openly left to neo-Marxist. If you follow him on FB you can’t miss it.

          • The Other Sean

            I think Jean was referring to Heinlein.

            • Oh. I’m on tablet and the threading is weird. Internet issues SHOULD be resolved b end of the week. (So our service is sucky, but changing it is a three ring circus.)
              Heinlein started out socialist, but it was Fabian socialism, and infused with a strong dose of horse sense. He moved slowly right.
              Ginny said he voted for Reagan and if he’d lived another election, he’d probably have voted Libertarian.

              • The Other Sean

                I think you can best see his socialist period in “For Us the Living” and in some of his early post-WW2 shorts (featured in e.g. “Expanded Universe”).

                • “Heinlein and the development of his political thinking as seen through a progression of reading of his works” would make a lovely class topic in a combined political science and modern literature vein..

                  Sure would beat several classes I took on my way to my masters. Limited choices…

                  Shoot, would have been more fun as a thesis than mine was.

              • Yeah. Look at Earth government in Have Spacesuit, Will Travel. One world. The alien base is handled by having Kip tell the Secretary General, who makes a phone call to get a military raid on the hush-hush. He moved after that.

          • Yeah, I meant Heinlein–from the vast amount I now know about him from reading 3 novels. 😀

        • For a good look at what he thinks, check out this:
          http://www.salon.com/1999/06/15/brin_main/

      • Since we’re on the subject(ish)…

        Does anyone else see a STRONG dose of socialism in Brin’s Uplift novels?

        I mean, Patrons “uplift” Clients in exchange for one hundred thousand years of servitude right? Isn’t that the goal of the lefties? Bread and circuses in exchange for everlasting (or close enough) servitude? It strikes me that he has admitted to his goals in his fiction.

        • OTOH, that isn’t portrayed as charming behavior.

          • No, but it is treated as inevitable, up to and including the point where the Clients rebelled and then became Patrons themselves.

            • Clients rebelled? In which book?

              Clients were essentially indentured for either 100k or 500k years (don’t remember which), then they are able to become patrons. Humans became qualified for patron status before ever being clients, because they were “mislaid” in the records.

              • It was mentioned in a conversation. It’s been awhile, I forget which book. But it was mentioned that the clients had rebelled X amount of times, succeeding Y amount of times and then continuing with the cycle. I’d have to re-read to find out which.

        • It’s weird – yeah, it’s highly socialist, and Brin is obviously a socialist, but the model is shown as highly flawed, and their control of the language is shown as heinously thought-controlling in nature. As if he realizes how bad his philosophy is, but can’t admit it to himself.

          • The Other Sean

            That reminds me of the teachers and bureaucrats driving around with “Question authority” and “Stick it to the man” bumper stickers, but going crazy when anybody disagrees with them.

    • If you have no real enemies to point at, then you must create them. Just as Sarah said in her argument with the SJW, She has all the creed they ask for; but, they would prefer to call her an enemy. They call Heinlein names while books of his written over fifty years ago still out sell their modern heroes. Fabricated windmill outrage just like their presumptions.

      • Christopher M. Chupik

        It was hilarious last week when Tor.com reviewed Predestination, based on “All You Zombies”, without ever once mentioning Heinlein.

        • I have a sneaking suspicion the reviewer had never read the story.

          • Christopher M. Chupik

            You’d think he’d still know about it, though. But this is Tor.com we’re talking about.

            • When I hit college, one of my first classes had me read a story that at the start was in rhythym and images, straight out of THE BIG SLEEP’s opening. And the TA teching the section HAD NEVER HEARD OF CHANDLER and didn’t know why he was important.

              They don’t even read THEIR OWN iconic writers.

    • Like Uncle Lar …”I am green with envy over your experience reading Robert for the first time” Plus I enjoyed Citizen of the Galaxy when I read it the first time at thirteen. It and some of Andre Norton Witch World books helped me through some very tough times.

    • Or is it that some of them have, but hate the self-reliance and independence themes so much that they don’t notice or ignore it?

      I never have read Spacesuit, so I can’t comment on that (I think I bought it for my Kindle App recently, though).

      But as for Mistress? I doubt any of this is spoilers by now: That’s definitely the case. Manuel was completely independent from government help. In fact, while he wasn’t generally fiery enough to actively hate the government, he subverted its authority any time he had a chance to do so without getting caught. He was happily married, cared for his children, who were homeschooled, and found government generally an annoyance. It was not stated, but you can bet there were no women’s shelters, nor homeless shelters. Everyone was expected to work for their living, or else have a family who would support them if they couldn’t.

    • One of their leading lights was complaining he didn’t write openly LGBT characters. No, seriously. Yea, not much other than All you zombies, except a lot of bisexual characters in his later books. (including Lazarus Long) but int he juveniles? In the forties? That’s when I decided they are insane.

  12. “…they’d have to break ties with the old power structure, which would mean they would be cast adrift in a world with no ties and no clear guide to right and wrong.” — also, importantly I think, cast adrift with no power either of their own or by association, so they’d have to start over (because for many of them, with no power there’s no point.)

  13. Since Marxism is a religion, in my opinion, I’m kind of afraid that it’s going to hang on way too long. I’ve come to the conclusion that the way the human brain works we kind of need a religion or something that acts as a religion. Since they turned real Christianity into something to mock, they’re pretty much left with Marxism or leftist political ideology as some of the only “acceptable” religions. They make really horrid religions though, totally lacking the important part about struggling to be a good person and do what’s right. They’re all focused on forcing *other* people to do things.

    Of course I don’t think that Islam is a very good religion either. It seems to produce cultures that I find dysfunctional. I was just reading about the Chinese who are converting to Christianity. Seems like a pretty rational choice. It worked pretty well for the west…though that has certainly changed.

    • BobtheRegisterredFool

      Marxism is a heresy of Christianity. This has been fairly well established.

      Thinking of the history of the great revivals, I’m not sure that a more conventional form of Christianity couldn’t pick up a fair amount of converts.

      At least that is my excuse for possibly having a sizable fraction of Christians in the future Japan I’ve been kicking around these past few months.

      • I just watched a South Korean film named ‘The Tower’. It was pretty much ‘Towering Inferno’ combined with a few 9/11 themes supposed to happen in, presumably, Seoul (wasn’t mentioned, but big city by the sea with a big river). Twin towers, high price apartments for the rich, Christmas party and a helicopter releasing snow for the spectacle loses control and collides with one of the towers, starting a fire. Nice disaster movie.

        Anyway, one interesting group of characters were a bunch of Christians. Their host and leader was said, I think, to have been able to buy an apartment there because he had won a lottery. For most of the movie they were played for laughs, with lots of loud praying and yelling hallelujahs and amens the whole time. In the end they did a bit better.

        And the interesting part was of course whether their depiction in the movie says anything how Koreans in general view their own Christian population. Apart from watching a few movies I have had no exposure to South Korean culture, so no idea.

        ?

  14. There is no one so blind as the one who wears the rose-colored glasses … and to them the roses come from Marxism. *sigh

  15. I find it interesting (entertainment mixed with horror) to see how much ‘thought’ in how many fields is corrupted by Marxist/communist propaganda while the ‘thinkers’ are in oblivious denial.

    Just looking at how the class struggle morass is smeared across the spectrum…

    It’d be depressing, except the very pervasiveness of the ideology has left it open to the light and modern communications are bringing a great deal of light to bear.

    Shrieking little vampires. They’re kinda cute. Let’s make more.

    We’re winning. They’re losing.

    This is the rough bit, but in the end…

  16. ” but they don’t call me evil”

    Well, we might call you Evil, but it’s out of love.

  17. lecturing us on how the use of Social Justice Warrior was wrong and shaming, and it meant we were all wing-nuts or something

    How… typical.

    Applying a term that was come up with by members of the group itself becomes bad when it’s used to identify stuff they don’t like. Especially if it’s accurate.

    The ever developing description for those who have physically induced lack of mental capacity (defective, retarded, disabled, differently-abled… I’m sure I’m skipping some) based on the word becoming associated with… low mental capacity. And folks get upset that it’s used for such.

    Slightly more convoluted is the folks who take offense to treating pregnant women “like we’re injured.” Well, it is largely analogous– it’s just that instead of our bodies meeting the demand of rebuilding themselves, it’s meeting the demand of building another body.

    Weakness isn’t inherently shameful. Flaws aren’t shameful. It’s choosing to make them worse that’s shameful.

  18. The problem isn’t the social justice zombies, but the fact that class struggle is such a useful path to power, especially if you manage to dumb down your zombies enough.

  19. Professor Badness

    I’m often left flabbergasted at the insane logic of some people, whether in the media or in person. While I can’t speak of those in the media, I would like to speak of those I have known personally.
    I have known many individuals, (coworkers, acquaintances, family members) who had developed a strange, bizarre or outright fictitious view of reality and, more specifically, logic.
    I have also noticed that these individuals had abandoned traditional Judeo/Christian values wholeheartedly. Drugs, promiscuous sex, theft…basically a wholesale attack on the ten commandments.
    I’m not talking someone who’s become an atheist or a pagan. I’m talking about the cross dresser who would hang out at cowboy bars because he liked to get them liquored up and take them home. (I’m actually surprised he was never killed.)
    I’m talking the person who was a dominatrix as a pastime, and loved to share, (TMI dude!).
    (You know, come to think of it, I’ve known a a wide variety of people.)
    My point is, It makes me wonder about these people in the media, or social media, who are screaming for nonsensical rights. So much of what they say makes no sense.
    Have they abandoned morals as well?

    • They don’t believe in morals. Most of them would probably be offended by your trying to apply a moral code to them. They’ve taken it that far.

    • That’s something about certain segments of the Left that has always bugged me. OK, yes, what you do in the privacy of your own bedroom is your business and nine of mine. That is obvious. But then KEEP it your business by sticking to mentally competent volunteers, and keeping it in your freaking bedroom. Please, God, don’t wear your kinky costumes on the street. It doesn’t mark you as a fully free adult who is proud of who he is. It marks you as a tacky adolescent with poor impulse control.

      • “OK, yes, what you do in the privacy of your own bedroom is your business and nine of mine. ”

        Fine, I’ll leave, I’m just taking my wallet with me.

  20. “I’m talking the person who was a dominatrix as a pastime, and loved to share, (TMI dude!)”

    If it was a dude, wouldn’t it be dominator? 😉 I may not know my Latin endings perfectly, but I think that’s correct. (And I’m one of those weirdos that uses “actor” for both male and female thespians because it’s easier.)

    • Ah, dammit. I meant this to be a reply to the above.

      • Professor Badness

        I have, in the past, used the term “Dominator”, which is the correct term. But most people do not immediately realize what I am talking about. It’s easier to simply say Dominatrix, then explain it was a guy.
        Dominator just sounds like a villain in a video game.

  21. I don’t think it is just that you are doing gay characters in a non-progressive way. It is that gays are THEIR victims, how DARE you steal them for your own purposes.

  22. I like the musical best of the Don Quixote retellings. Don Quixote was mad, but in his madness he showed what could be. He lived in a world where honor and valor and chivalry meant nothing… yet he brought honor, valor, and dignity and redemption to those around him seemingly by accident. I wish the modern madmen could sow as much good. Or even grasp the difference between him and them.

  23. Would being an ‘Individual Justice Warrior’ be a good thing?

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