Tricks to Avoid Thinking

So I shared this on Facebook.  I’m not saying I agree with it 100%. Given that “Russian businessmen” is code for “Russian Mob” and that Putin is their man, you could say Trump is as compromised as Hillary.

That said, if Trump is as compromised as Hillary, BAH.  On that point, as my mom would say “may the devil come and choose.” AKA, there is no difference.

You know my opinions, and I also know those of the three gentlemen in the video.  They might be reluctant “will vote for Trump to avoid Hillary,” but they’re not in any way shape or form unthinking Trump supporters.  They’re not unthinking anything, to be fair.  So I thought their opinions warranted listening to.

And then one of my commenters on the thread, explained to me that he wasn’t going to listen to the gentlemen because of their skin color and gender.  To be fair what he said was “Like I’m going to listen to white males, LOL.”

Mark that LOL, it is sort of a signpost.

My first reaction was “WTF?” This too is a sign post.  I have WTF wrinkles on my forehead from trying to understand the crazy things people will say in politics.  I mean, what the heck did Trump’s possible involvement with Russia have to do with gender or skin color?

If the video were about Hillary, a stupid person might think the only reason to oppose her was sexism, in which case I could see “they’re male” at least making sideways sense.  For a very dim person that is. One who really believes all the hot air that emanates from the Clinton camp re: Clinton foundation monies, Benghazi, compromising national security, etc.  I understand there are such people and have seen them (in a kind of awe, as one watches the naked mole rats, at the zoo) on Facebook.

But this had NOTHING whatsoever to do with male/female issues.

If  the video had been about Black Lives Matter, again, I could see someone saying “they should at least have a black person for perspective about what it is like to be black in America.”  (To which my answer is, “have a black person from Arab countries, for real perspective.” Never mind.)

But this was a discussion of a white male candidate, by white males, about possible involvement with evil white (and mostly male) powers.

Even if you’re a dim person who thinks that people think with their sex organs and skin, (the right name for that is sexist and racist) SURELY this would be the equivalent of having an all-black panel discussing Black Lives Matter.  Right?

I’m me, and I’ve been in a semi-pissy mood. Well, not quite.  The head cold was followed by the mother of all depressions, so that yesterday I had trouble talking myself into drinking coffee and writing was out of the question.  If you saw my deadlines, you’d know how antsy I’m getting.  So I pointed out the above, that if he believed that then he really was a stone cold racist and sexist.

What emerged was this crazy comment about how he was sure the three gentlemen had all pledged different fraternities and belonged to different country clubs.

I don’t know the background of the commenter, but I understand he’s fairly well off.  So this is a “let them eat cake” moment.  I know the backgrounds of the three men in the video and none of them pledged a fraternity and if one belongs to a country club it’s not what this commenter imagines.

What I mean to say is that what he said is as nakedly stereotyping and idiotic as saying “I bet all them darkies were sitting on their porch, eating watermelon and singing spirituals.” (And the closest I know to that would be older son, who would totally do this, if he weren’t low carb.  Seriously.  None of my black friends can sing.  Well, maybe one.  I’ve never asked him.  Didn’t come up.)

NO ONE.  NO ONE who lives in the real world can believe this bullshit.  Most of my friends are white (Duh.  It is still the majority in the US.)  Mind you, most of them could probably claim another race, if they looked into it.  But they’re white-looking.  (I haven’t looked at their census forms, and we Americans are a mixed lot.)

I have not one white male friend who fits that stereotype the commenter invoked. Hell, I don’t have a MALE friend that fits that stereotype.  Not one.  This is possibly because, as Dave Freer calls it, most of my friends are strivers.    They are from that vast American middle class that seems undifferentiated only if you don’t want to differentiate it.  Because of my age, most of them are children of what Heinlein called “the neglected children of WWII”.  Most of them are also the result of the sexual revolution, the upheavals in society in the sixties, the e-revolution, the turning away from mass manufacture in this country.

What I mean to say is that I am racking my brain and I can’t think of a single friend who grew up without at least one of these handicaps: single parent; borderline poverty or extended periods of poverty; unemployment of one or both parents; a serious health/addiction/etc issue in the household.  I don’t have any friend who attended college (about half my friends) who didn’t have issues THERE, often graduating in debt and by the skin of his teeth.

I don’t think my friends are that strange for the majority of Americans of any color in the last 40 years.  Maybe they’re Odd, but in this, from overheard conversations and my contact with the “normal world” (I wear gloves) I think they’re dead center normal.

Then there’s my generation.  We graduated in 1980 when there were no jobs.  I had more friends working temp jobs than finding “real ones.” Then things stabilized till the early 2000s when…  Let’s say I know one man who works in computers and has been continuously employed since 2001.  My husband.  All the rest are working for six months, laid off six months…

And while computers (which seems to occupy most of my generation) is traditionally unstable, the other occupations don’t seem to be beds of roses. MOST of my friends go through cyclic periods of unemployment.  This is what happens in the middle of technology upheavals.

Note I didn’t say my white friends.  This happens to ALL my friends.

Unless my commenter on facebook is of a rarely privileged breed, surely the same happens to HIS friends. So why would he think that white males have no history, that they’re all alike, having pledged fraternities and joined country clubs?  How can any human being, alive in the 21st century think that?

They can’t.  Which is why I told you to notice that “LOL”.

None of the people who harp on “white privilege” or talk about “diversity” when they mean diversity of external characteristics CAN follow their own reasoning down the rabbit hole.

Even a moderately intelligent person, with more than room temperature IQ would get that if you think putting someone of a different color/genitalia on a panel makes it more valid, you must assume everyone of the same color/genitalia thinks and works exactly the same.  In which case you have to admit you’re sexist and racist.  The worst kind, the kind who dehumanizes the “other.”

But what the commenter was doing was not thinking.

When I was very little I would pray a lot.  It wasn’t real prayer.  It was just a repetition of familiar words/rhythms to stop anxiety.  On occasion I also counted, or recited Shakespeare.  You see, I hated meeting new people or being in unfamiliar circumstances. This calmed me down and stopped me thinking whether people liked me, whether I’d done something wrong, wether–

This is all these “comments” are.  The commenter is stopping himself thinking.  The “LOL” is not an infallible clue but it’s close to it.  Whenever you hear a liberal shibboleth thrown in at random, it is almost always followed by “LOL” which is even more out of place, and definitely a mark of “I’m saying this to stop the bad thoughts, bad thoughts, bad thoughts.”

Now what in particular about the above video caused such a strong reaction, I don’t know.  If I had to guess I’d imagine that the commenter is so annoyed at Hillary as a candidate that he can’t allow himself to even hear something mildly non accusatory about Trump, without doing his own private exorcism.

Me?  I don’t care.  I don’t have a dog in this presidential race.  A pox on both their houses, etc.  BUT even I can see that yeah, on some fronts, if only because he’s not used to the GOVERNMENTAL kind of power Trump might be the least of two evils.  (Then there’s his unfathomablity.  That’s a discussion for another time, and one I don’t intend to have.)

The point is that normal, functional adults discuss things and are willing to take things into account and maybe even change their opinions somewhat.

Children, the indoctrinated and our so called intelligentsia, OTOH, cannot afford to think.  Thinking would reveal all the cracks in their self-contradictory philosophy

So they just scream things about race and gender and LOL.

Not realizing that here on the streets we are every day less and less amused at being told to eat cake.

335 thoughts on “Tricks to Avoid Thinking

  1. Well, I am white, I am male, have a college degree but never joined a fraternity or joined country clubs.

    I guess in the mind of that moron, I’m not a Real White Male. 👿

    1. Same here. And since it’s UNPOSSIBLE!!1!eleventy! that TWO such “not-real” white males could possibly exist, I guess my cover is blown: I’m really Drak Bibliophile.

      1. I’m pretty sure I’m not a sockpuppet of Drak/Robin, but what do I know?

        I think some of my relatives may be in country clubs, and they might’ve been in fraternities or sororities. I also know some people from school who spent time in fraternities or sororities.

        Question: would it be fair to assume that a male who was not white found his young adult community in gang activity?

        Sure, I’ve never heard that from anyone I’ve known, but it is fair to say that I would not have met a representative sampling.

        1. FWIW, I’m from the country and when I was young I was in 4H, so I suppose you could say I joined a country club as a boy…

        2. I’m not a male, and I’m not necessarily white, but I did rent a room from a fraternity once.

          Hey, they were offering $300 for 3 months during summer break. Where else are you going to find a short term lease in Chicago for that price? (Yes, there’s a few stories involved. Mostly involving practical microbiology, the origins of my lifelong love of bleach, and the unexpected usefulness of church potluck recipes when boys discover you can cook!)

          I live in the country (I’m pretty sure small town Texas counts), and I’m a member of a writing club. Does that count?

        3. I’ll own up as a white college graduate without fraternity or country club ties (when it comes to joining clubs I’m a complete Marxist).

          I must be Bob’s sock puppet.

          Or maybe I’m not white.

          Wait, I qualified submarines, maybe he’d consider that a frat.

    2. I was in a Country Club; I worked one summer as a caddy based out of the pro shop . . .

      And Judge Posner is still a moron.

    3. I’m white, male, have two college degrees and never joined a country club. I did stay a few weeks after a semester end in a frat house (until I got a job). I’ve been on a golf course, once when I was young, and have walked across one or two, but don’t play. Don’t play tennis. Met my first wife in a bar. Don’t smoke, don’t chew, and don’t go with girls what do. I guess I don’t count, either (I do do math).

    4. Never a frat boy, but I did belong to a country club in Madang, Papua New Guinea.
      Then again, I did live in a small apartment around the back, which had it’s good points (I never had to stock sodas) and bad points (karaoke).

    5. Hmm. so what would I be? White; check (or Czech for that matter . . and english/welsh/cornish, french, and who knows). Male; check. No degree, just a HS Diploma, but I works in the chemnicals industry, and have to ‘splain to all the degree holders that “No, that ain’t how it works” all the time. And I certainly don’t belong to any country club, but I do hang with the Owners Club for my motorcycle.

  2. I don’t know who coined the term, but I heard it decades ago: “Thought-terminating cliché”. I find myself using that term a lot these days.

  3. I would guess it’s the result of people being told that lacking “power” means they can’t be racist against white people: Lots of people racist against white people. Since power is not required to be racist.

    1. In that case can I say whatever I want to about Obama and not be racist because he clearly has more power than me?

      1. No, because Privilege!!1!

        No matter their position, minorities are never considered to be powerful enough to be racists. Because, you know, White Man’s World. Because powerful black people are really just slaves of the White Man’s institutions.

        Because ‘”Shut up!”, he explained.’

        1. Yeah, it gets very warped. All to pretend their racism isn’t racism.

          It’s been going on for a few decades at least.

          1. I got the “Women can’t be sexist because Power!!!!11!!” back in the 90s. Yep, she was. SSDD.

        2. His parents are also more privileged than this white college graduate who has never been to a fraternity. I watched Animal House once. I suppose that might count.

  4. It’s a reflexive response. If you wanted to create a tribalist society through operant conditioning you couldn’t find a better tool than Twitter. Facebook is a close second.

    1. Age-grouped schools with minimal responsible adult supervision.

      It carries over to Facebook and Twitter, but both of those let you BLOCK the abusive. Couldn’t do that very well in high school.

  5. I don’t know the background of the commenter, but I understand he’s fairly well off. So this is a “let them eat cake” moment.

    I’d suggest that your poster was having a ‘Qu’ils mangent de la brioche’ moment more like. It looks to be an illustration of someone who appears to have become so acculturated they simply can not think past their indoctrination. One might as well be speaking to them in a language that is foreign for all the sense the resulting conversation will make to either.

    1. Especially to the extent that the French bread shortage was a direct consequence of price controls, the first step to Socialism. Not only does the ‘moment’ show they are clueless, it also shows they are incapable of rational thinking.

      1. Incapable of rational thinking is a prerequisite for Progressives.

        OK, some of them might be capable but unwilling, but that doesn’t exactly cover them in glory.

        1. So is pathological dishonesty. Which is why you cannot have a civil society with them in it.

        2. Need to add to the FAQ:
          “being technically capable of doing a thing, but unwilling to make the choice to do so which would be required for the result, can be phrased as ‘cannot’ here without needing to be explained. Comment Reduction Act of 2016.”

              1. I abstain. Courteously.

                I’m sorry, but I’m halfway through watching 1776 for the first time, (it stalled on the second letter) and that just cracked me up. Is there any other blog in the world that makes a stab at following Roberts’ Rules of Order in the comments?

  6. Putting “LOL” at the end of that particular statement is worse than laughing at your own joke; it’s making a joke of oneself…and not in the self-deprecating sort of way.

  7. They don’t dare think too much. Because so many of the pillars of the modern narrative crumble when faced by actual history or philosophy. That’s why they don’t read, either.

  8. NO ONE. NO ONE who lives in the real world …

    There’s your answer, of course. Where is any evidence that such people live in the real world? Have you looked, seriously looked, at any of their policy proposals and their defenses thereof? In The Real World, doubling the price of labor eliminates (legal) jobs. ITRW, enacting restrictions on legal ownership of firearms stimulates the demand for black market supplied weapons. ITRW, appeasing one’s enemies encourages more aggressive behaviour by them.

    One reason I eschew FB is the shortage there of people living in the real world.

    1. Ya know, it’s pretty bad when discussions at a sci-fi con (LibertyCon) are better grounded in reality than are popular economics and public policy.

    2. McDonald’s has already opened a store in Phoenix that is run by robots. If it works out, most of those burger jobs will disappear across the country.

      1. That’s the funny thing about “minimum wage”. No matter what value the government tries to force it to be, it always ends up being $0.00/hr.

        And that figure *still* counts working: there were times when I was looking for work that I wondered if I could volunteer to work on software for a local hospital or some other good cause, so that I could have more experience on my resume. We have to get experience somehow, after all! And frankly, even if I need $20/hr to provide for my family, I’d rather be working $5/hr getting that experience (or $8/hr, as the case turned out to be) rather than $0/hr.

        1. They want to eliminate that option. Unless you pay the proper rites to the powerful and can do it as an “internship”

          1. Ultimately they want a federal Department of Employment that cuts everyone a check every week and assigns people jobs based on the whims of the political establishment.

        2. There exists a perfectly fine way of assuring a minimum wage is a living wage, without burdening employers: the EITC. If “the people” of a community decide nobody should earn less than $X per week, let them supplement the wages employers think the work is worth.

          Yeah, I know the response, but why should the only people cheating the system be employees?

          1. Because cheating is the privilege of the minions of the powerful.

            The powerful so the same thing, but they’re privileged to call it something else.

  9. Most of my friends are white (Duh. It is still the majority in the US.)

    The Daughter, from 2nd through fifth grade attended a magnet program housed in an elementary school located in a housing project. The racial population was the inverse of that in the nation as a whole. The poor child, when she began, was at the where she was point quite literal in her understanding of words. (She still is, believing that words must have meaning, or there is no communication.) So one day she created a fuss when she burst forth with a complaint that she did not understand why she kept being told she was part of the majority, for in the world in which she went to school it was clearly not so…

    1. I can relate. When I was little I got confused about how people who had lighter skin than my dad weren’t white, but he was. Then again it took me way longer than it should have to learn that the term ‘African-American’ had nothing to do with being from Africa.

      1. There have apparently been some amusing broadcast interviews of “African American” athletes… from Canada. They tend to get annoyed when their respective interviewers insist on calling them things like “Canadian African American” instead of just “black”.

        1. I was at a museum seminar when the docent was discussing King Tut and other ancient Egyptians, etc. She referred to the Ethiopians who conquered Egypt and became the “Black Pharos” as “African-American pharos”.

          1. On another blog a few years ago, a commenter related how he was told calling Santa Anna’s forces at the Alamo “Mexican” was racist.

              1. I’m not saying it’s Orwellian, but…

                The purpose of Newspeak was not only to provide a medium of expression for the world-view and mental habits proper to the devotees of IngSoc, but to make all other modes of thought impossible. It was intended that when Newspeak had been adopted once and for all and Oldspeak forgotten, a heretical thought — that is, a thought diverging from the principles of IngSoc — should be literally unthinkable

                On second thought, maybe I AM saying it’s Orwellian.

                1. It never works, though. In order to make a word or phrase verboten, the PC Police need to find a substitute word or phrase. And for a few years, there’s a push to get people to switch over to the “nicer” term. But then everyone starts to associate that word or phrase with the meaning of the original, and you’re right back where you started.

                  Case in point is the word idio…, I mean the phrase mentally retar…, I mean, mentally handi…, I mean differently-abled. The words just get more and more eye-roll inducing. And a few years from now, the current buzzword of choice will be judged to be too insulting, and the search for a new buzzword will begin.

                  1. Well, it “works” in one way: They often co-opt a perfectly good word, spoiling it for its proper use. E.g., who uses “gay” in casual speech to refer to a lively vivacity anymore?

                    1. On that note: A couple days ago I was viewing vintage commercial art (travel posters, propaganda book covers, etc.) and say a colorful cover for a children’s book that was entitled Gay Stories for Girls. I’m guessing that was well before the co-opting of the term “gay.”

                  2. Besides the traditional euphemism treadmill — found wherever euphemisms are — there is the little problem that if you allow it to be fixed, you lose your grievances as people master it. Only a constantly shifting vocabulary allows new grievances as needed.

                2. I think it’s also Kafka-oid. If you don’t know the PC word of the day (hour), you must be one of those Oppressors who must be subjected to shrieking and pointing. (Remembering the remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers.)

                  RCP, type H. I caddied at a country club; does that make me a member of the elite?

                3. That’s only part of it:

                  “In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, not to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is…in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.”

                  ― Theodore Dalrymple

                  1. Regarding Newspeak, and societies that force it- in the end, they will disintegrate after about three generations.
                    The thing that Orwell never understood is that after a while, Newspeak becomes an ironic joke, the men monitoring the telescreens become bored drunks, the agents of Minilove corrupt and happy to accept bribes, and the Inner Party a bunch of spineless yes men.
                    The boot may stamp for a long time, but eventually the man wearing it becomes old, tired, and in need of a lie down.

                    1. The thing is, in order to maintain surveillance over the population, you basically need a police force three times its size (because they will need to be alert to watch properly). The math is an obvious problem.

                      This is a good article on how Tolkien got it better than Orwell:

                      I also note that Poul Anderson’s “Sam Hall” plausibly overthrew a government with more tools than ever Orwell gave the Thought Police.

                    2. Also, the theory of a modern totalitarian state puts its future rulers under surveillance, too. The problem is that the necessary talents to maintain that state are not cultivated by the process.

            1. If you could not call them ‘Mexican’ then would have been the appropriate designation for Santa Anna’s forces? At the time of the Texas rebellion he was Santa Anna was President of Mexico.

        2. Those interviews are always hilarious. “The first African-American from ANY country…”

            1. No, they won’t think.

              Can’t implies that they lack the ability, but most of them have the ability and exert an enormous amount of effort into suppressing it.

              1. Many have not only have never been taught how to think they have been taught not to think. Free thinking is dangerous…

            1. “Colored” is racist. “Of color” is enlightened.

              That’s according to the 2016 NewSpeak dictionary. By 2017 or so, “of color” may be racist, and we’ll have some new circumlocution that the enlightened people use.

              I’ve been watching this game for nearly 50 years. It’s boring now. I don’t mind using a term that makes people comfortable, but I’m not going to bother changing when the term changes every decade or less.

              1. Exactly. A friend of mine some years ago was the president of a small research (sort of) institute, and confided in me that he was so tired of PC at the various conferences he went to because the folks insisting on the PC terms de jour weren’t even listening to the content of the presentations, they were just listening for contraventions of their latest approved vocabulary (especially for those using the immediately previously correct but no longer accepted terminology) so they could rail against them. He decided to just chuck the whole thing and retire.

                  1. “Black” hasn’t really entered the un-PC yet, though. It’s borderline at worst. And the “community leaders” do try and get people to use “African-American”. But calling someone “black” still won’t get you turned into a pariah in most circles.

                    I should know, since I still use it exclusively.

              2. Nod.

                When I was growing up, the polite term was changing from “colored person” to Negro.

                Then we were told to use Black instead of Negro.

                The PC crowd hates Black so wants “African-American” or “Person of Color”.

                Note, most sane Blacks use “Black” not “African-American”.

                I use “Black”.

                    1. Danger is when the abused puppy you’ve been tormenting turns around and rips your throat out.

                  1. Watch one of the PC crowd get hung up trying to describe a dark-skinned person from India… their minds bounce around like pachinko balls, trying to fit square pegs into round holes…

                    1. Was chatting on a Teamspeak server with a group of guildmates, and one of them mentioned that they’d recently been called out by someone for using the term “Native American” instead of “indigenous peoples”. Someone else on the chat channel then identified themself as a “Native American”, and said that the term “indigenous peoples” was one of the dumbest things they’d ever heard.

                    2. I’m a “native American” for generations back. I used to always check that box before “African American” came along, which is even stupider.

                    3. Junior, I have had enrolled full blood Navajo and Cheyenne sigh (or growl) and say, “Damn it, I’m an Indian. Or just use my tribal affiliation.” I ain’t gonna argue with that.

                    4. Unlike a certain senator Warren I am 1/32nd Cherokee. The problem is my ancestor didn’t walk the trail of tears and isn’t on the tribal rolls. See she married her settler and left before the trail of tears happened. Oh well. So aside from amusing myself by randomly checking the box for American Indian it doesn’t do me much good.

                  2. It depends on which “gotcha” they’re going for– when it’s Paul Ryan taking a picture with a bunch of interns where they don’t do the “organize by Token” thing and fix the color balance, then “minority” means “black.”

                    When they’re looking for evidence of hating on “minorities,” then calling Sarah white is evidence.

                1. My understanding is that “black” actually had a good reason behind it, which is why it was selected as the new “term of choice” by the civil rights movement. MLK Jr. and the others in the movement realized that black on black racism was a problem. You can’t really talk about racial equality when members of what are supposed to be your own racial group are judging people based on the color of their skin. And there was prejudice by those members of the community with lighter skin tones being directed against the members of the community with darker skin tones (and based on what others have stated here, this seems to be a problem among pretty much *all* racial groups in the *entire* world).

                  To combat that issue, the civil rights leaders decided to start using the term “black”. It was hoped that it would subtly discourage bias by using the darkest color to represent the community. Whether that’s worked or not, I can’t say. But it troubles me that the “community leaders” are in such a rush to abandon it.

                2. Same here – I’ve gone through ‘colored’ through Negro to Black … and I honestly don’t have the patience to go through the whole thing again.

                  Besides, I’m nearly old enough to be considered a curmudgeon.

                  1. I have long maintained that one benefit of being a Conservative-American is that up with such nonsense as that we need not put.

                3. This a real non-PC thing to say. But, all terms used for any group that the majority are completely different from will eventually beecome a perjoritive. Therefore, the name of that group will be constantly changing to something people think won’t be insulting. So cripples are no “differently abled”.Differently abled? What does that even mean? Think about it. There is no meaning to it. And yes, I’ve heard kids call other kids that as an insult..

                  1. I haven’t really seen the proliferation of the term, “differently abled”. I’ve only seen “disabled”, which I hate, because to me, it implies that the person cannot function, not that they have a condition that causes them difficulty in doing certain things. That condition is “handicapped”, and there’s really no justification for people to demonize that term, but I’ve gotten attacked online for using it.

                    The last person who did, told me that if I were disabled, then I would hate the term handicapped. Well, I’ve got news for him – when my sciatic nerve decided that I had abused it, I was handicapped; I could barely walk, and could only sit for about 30 minutes at a time, but I was damned well NOT “disabled”.

                    1. I think “differently abled” was about the same time as “special,” because I remember it as a teen– so mid-late 90s?

                      Hasn’t gotten popular enough to be dumped.

                1. I gave up on the “Bad Library Books” web site after the whole “We’re de-accessioning this medical book because it has ‘retarded’ in the title even though it is still in current use” bit.

            2. “Colored People” is racist but “People of Color” isn’t racist.

              And the above is good evidence for the idea that Liberals don’t/can’t think because they can’t explain the difference between “Colored People” and “People of Color”. 😦

      2. It’s fun sometimes to nod sagely when somebody uses the abysmal “African-American” construction, rub your chin for a second, and say “you know, modern genetic studies of human origins clearly indicate that every single human alive today had ancestors in Africa.”

        Then sit back and listen to the “But, but, buts.”

        1. IIRC, in 2004, Theresa Heinz Kerry referred to herself as an African-American, because she’d been born in Africa.

          Needless to say, there was an immediate uproar over her statement.

      3. An acquaintance was born in Rhodesia. He’s an “African-American” and has the birth certificate to prove it.

        The State Department still doesn’t seem to understand that not everyone in Africa is black. Which seems pretty racist to me…

        1. Same thing. I knew a folk-singer who was born to missionaries in Malawi, and raised there. He always selected “African-American.” Mostly to piss off the PC folks, I think.

      4. So, Caucasians must be called ‘white’. But blacks must be ‘African-Americans’. And Asians must never be called ‘yellow’.

        Clear as mud.

        1. It was clear as mud, but it covered the ground
          and the confusion made me brain go ’round

    2. When I’m in a “the smallest minority in the world is the individual” mood, I like to refer to my race as “Alphesian” which is a half-breed blend of the “Edrenian” and “Lolian” races.

      For purposes of the Census and other Official documents, I’ll often mark “Other” and then fill in the blank with “American”.

      What more do we need to know than that?

        1. That’s because Beautiful but Evil Space Princess just doesn’t fit in the blank, right? 😛

  10. Someone (can’t recall where and I’m trying to wrap up the draft of the WIP today so my brain is a *little* preoccupied) had an essay last week about the Special Snowflakes having been so cocooned and protected that they truly have no mental skills of dealing with people who disagree with them and with ideas outside their experience. Some of they really are having break-downs because they can’t handle adults from a different world-view.

    With that in mind, I wonder how much of the tribal/herd behavior and virtue-signalling on Twit-book is for self-protection as well as social protection? They can’t handle the facts because they don’t know how. Thus the LOL dismissals and surges of five-minute hate and calls for banning. *shrug* Probably not as much as flat out “I don’t wanna hear you la, la, la,” but still . . .

    1. With that in mind, I wonder how much of the tribal/herd behavior and virtue-signalling on Twit-book is for self-protection as well as social protection?

      A lot, as best I can tell.

      Watch what happens if someone puts a toe across the wrong line. KABOOM!

    2. Near as i can tell, a bunch of them actually believe what the TV tells them, that anyone other than right and proper progressive SJW liberals barely exist, is only in flyover country, and that they are a marginalized minority.
      I was going to say ‘they believe anyone else doesn’t exist’ but no, from what i have seen here in L.A., they just believe they don’t exist *here*. Hence why they have no skills for dealing with people who believe different, they think they will never encounter them, that we’ll never leave our little social enclaves and go out into the world, because they won’t.
      (Sorry, i was just looking at stuff for a local community college, and they have a thing on their front page on their safe zones, and a little thing in the main item on the safe zones says you have to take a sensitivity course and wear a badge to be allowed into them. Seriously, badging and segregating has *never* turned out poorly, has it?)

  11. I’m told it’s blameworthy to spellcheck ewe, because ESL. Wether it’s right or wrong, I’m gonna hogget.

    1. Er. No. I don’t claim you shouldn’t spell check me because ESL. My spelling/typos aren’t from ESL, they’re from typing fast pre-caffeine, because no one pays for this blog. (Well, some people donate. I make about 2500 a year from this blog. NOT enough.)
      You want it spellchecked, you pay. Eh.

      1. It’s better spell-checked than some technical manuals I’ve read. Much clearer and more coherent, too. And there are folks that actually get paid to do the writing and formatting of those things…

        1. Good editors don’t get paid enough. And I say that from the writer side of the cooperative effort.

      2. If I’m smart I stop and read my posts out loud to see how they sound. It also helps me catch obvious typo’s. That said I’m a typo machine when I get going. 😉

        1. I catch them all the time, but what’s the point of wasting my time pointing them out? If someone wants typo-checked (Hi, Pam!) she’ll ask when she wants it.
          Some of them are pretty funny, though, and then I sit here thinking, was that a typo or a pun?

          Another tip for typo hunting is read backwards. Especially if it’s your own writing and you know what you intended to say, and tend to read your intentions instead of your execution.

          1. I’m REALLY good at reading what’s supposed to be there.

            This is why when I alpha/beta read for someone I point out that I don’t do grammar/spelling “nits” for the most part. If I get at all caught up in the story I just don’t see them. My brain fills in what’s supposed to be there automatically. Only when it’s bad enough that I can’t figure it out at least without puzzling over it do I even notice. And if I don’t get caught up in the story there are other problems (at least for me) that have to be addressed before grammar/spelling even becomes an issue.

            1. Funny — our Proglodyte would-be overlords have an uncanny talent for decoding what something is supposed to say — and they aren’t at all happy with the things we’re supposedly saying.

              1. and yet, they can’t read what is actually being said. And the messages they decode are oddly consistent with their worldview and their view of us.

                1. If you read what’s actually being said, you might have to change your thoughts.

                  Some of them can be perturbed by the thought that finding coded messages in people’s communications that reveal them as your enemy is normally diagnosed as clinical paranoia.

  12. The lack of long term employment in IT is actually a real problem. Without it there’s a loss of institutional knowledge which means that organizations repeatedly try something that doesn’t work but seems like it ought to.

    Mind you this doesn’t just apply to IT, but it is particularly prevalent there. This may actually be a (minor) advantage of the European can’t fire people world. In European organizations you actually get that institutional knowledge and (I’m told by some European friends of mine) this can feed back to US parent companies that have had 3 management turnovers and countless layoffs/resignations in 5 years. In fact one of my friends has an email thread that he has now sent to three different product managers over the last 5 years because each one has proposed doing soemthing that sucked horribly some 7 or 8 years ago.

    1. My Dad saw the same thing in the Aerospace Industry. He was one of the rocket scientists laid off after the Lunar landings. Years later his old company hired him again. He was afraid he’d be so out-of-date, a real dinosaur. Instead, he was the instant expert. And he had to keep referring the bright young things to the library archives for the reports on the tests of exactly what they’d just thought of.

      1. Oh dear God yes. Too often we ‘get things don’t and have no record of how. And then management adds on a bunch of requirements and reviews that further slow down things, leading to other workarounds. Then you lose the institution knowledge and fight battle over again.

    2. It’s not so much a loss of institutional knowledge as the outright denial that such a thing exists.

      Management is firmly set in the “undifferentiated labor” Marxist mindset. Managers are interchangeable; therefore programmers and engineers are too!

        1. Uh… in every single one of the schools I went to, that wouldn’t have been a problem. You have the approved syllabus, the course notes, the answers to the selected questions, and a shiny degree in education that qualifies you to teach *anything.*

          Why, yes, they were utterly incompetent at teaching. But that apparently wasn’t a performance metric.

          1. Private school. You have a textbook, the AP standards, and a classroom, and whatever lab stuff the departing teacher left. Sic’ em!

            1. Oh yeah, and private school, so you have to have a BA in your field, or to have taken significent coursework in your field.

                1. I believe in Kentucky, they require a minimum of a Masters in education, but not in the field being taught (but that’s public school, I don’t know about private schools).

  13. Wow. Just wow.

    I don’t even.

    Ahem, your privilege is showing.

    You just don’t get it.

    Well that’s just what an affluent white male like you WOULD say.


  14. Of the ten people in the IT department located in my office, 6 of us have been working here for 15-20 years. However, it is a large corporation, and half have had to spend intervals of 3-27 months at other locations; the rest of us have still spent months in our home office, but doing work for another office. We’ve been very darned lucky to dodge layoffs for so long.

    1. Seems to depend on industry your software is serving. Consumer-oriented stuff – very volatile, rapid staff turn-over, matches the product.
      Commercial and industrial-oriented products — my employer has been around for 30 years +/-, only been part of a large corp the last 10 years, and we have s/w developers who’ve been here since the beginning.
      IT (internal customers) is a little different – many companies act as if it doesn’t contribute to the bottom line, so they pay less attention to the value of institutional knowledge.

        1. life can get far easier if you realize you are not as smart as you are told you are. The trick is knowing how not to sell yourself short at the same time.

          1. If that. Most Progs would be deluding themselves if they thought they were mediocre.

  15. Speaking of the Russians, I read an interesting piece this morning by Andrew Napolitano who suggested that it was not Russians who hacked the DNC e-mails, but operatives of our own NSA. Nothing official of course, but seems that many of our clandestine wonks actively detest Ms. Clinton.Their professional sensibilities are offended by her cavalier disregard for basic electronic security, as well as implementing policies while Secretary of State in an effort to depose Quadaffi that wound up providing modern arms to the faction that murdered Ambassador Stevens.
    In world news it’s been reported that the largest river in Egypt is at risk to run dry as a fleet of ocean going tankers pump its water for transport to America where it is in great demand. Apparently large pitchers of de Nile are the drink of choice this election season.

      1. Always wondered why exactly that given it’s California there aren’t a string of solar powered desalinization plants all up and down the coast.
        Or harvest a small to medium iceberg up the coast a bit and tow it to the LA basin.
        I mean, as opposed to sucking the Colorado dry as a bone by the time it hits the Mexican border, there ought to be other options. Short of removing half the people in Cali of course. Can’t be having that now can we. Lord save us, some of them might come live near me.

        1. There was one built in San Diego, that went into operation at the end of last year. Hopefully Sacramento will allow others.

          1. Probably not; the plant uses electrical power to operate, can’t have that!

            Meanwhile, they’ll almost certainly decide to accelerate the decommissioning of existing reservoirs and dams throughout the state.

            Sacramento is an insane asylum run by the inmates.

            1. Eh, it’s California. Let’s ask Monsanto to genetically engineer them to be able to process ocean water, and call it good.

              Nothing could possibly go wrong.

              (If anyone bugs our dinner table conversations, I pity them very much. This was actually the topic of discussion. It started from “How do whales get a drink of water?”)

              1. A friend works IT at a large genetic engineering firm. He said that, in his opinion, geneticists are hard on storage space (he measures his storage arrays in petabytes now) and that third shift isn’t all that bad once you get used to the giant mutant rutabagas tapping on the windows…

        2. People build houses in a desert and then complain there’s no water.

          Too many hamsters, not enough cage.

          1. Is it Chile or some other South American country where hamsters are considered a delicacy. The Cali version, not so much I expect. Probably leave a bad taste in your mouth.

              1. A friend’s daughter visited Peru with her class, and was treated with divination by guinea pig. The shaman rubs the pig all over your body, then smashes the pig against a rock to kill it, and then rubs it all over your body again. Then the shaman dissects the pig. Any illness found in the pig (other than the skull fracture, I presume) indicates a corresponding illness in you.

                And then they eat the guinea pig.

        3. “Short of removing half the people in Cali of course.”

          Oh, they’ve been trying that for decades! Not officially, to be sure, but it’s the only way to explain the various laws they’ve been passing.

          The residents have been a lot more submissive than expected, however, and so their depopulation efforts have been a miserable failure. (To the gratitude of everyone else, to be sure.)

          On a more serious note: I’ve noticed that socialism has a certain…viral…quality to it. A host State becomes infected, and creates conditions that are hostile to prosperous life…so “spores” leave the State, and go to neighboring States for work…and then complain that the new State doesn’t have all those wonderful programs for the poor and needy that the old State had…and so the cycle of disease continues…

        4. Solar is questionable as a power source. You need a lot of geography to get a little bit of power. Gov. Schwarzenneger tried to build a big solar power plant out in the Mojave Desert, and got shot down by the habitat preservation segment of the greens.

          Glenn Reynolds (I think) has proposed a better solution, imo – desalinization plants powered by small nuclear reactors.

          1. Gov. Schwarzenneger tried to build a big solar power plant out in the Mojave Desert, and got shot down by the habitat preservation segment of the greens.

            And Jerry Pournelle was predicting that back in the seventies.

          2. Shortly after the fall of the USSR, there was a plan to lease Soviet nuclear submarines, anchor them off the coast, and use them to power desalinization plants. The NIMBY types were apparently fine with that…

            Cue Ray Stevens’ “Surfin’ USSR”:

            “We got a Soviet sub / she’s a ’79.
            She’s got nuclear reactor / and she runs real fine.
            We’re loyal to the Party / and the Party line,
            But a sailor’s gotta have a little fun sometime.”

            1. Not much of a plan, I happen to think having Soviet-designed reactors in Russia is a bit too close for comfort.

              Now if it were some nice US Navy PWRs…

              1. Yeah, well, the DoD seems all to happy to decommission everything with an ‘N’ in the designator that’s even slightly olderish – you’d think marginal utility would entail parking them somewhere. Imagine a museum ship with a built in generator for the adjacent area! Yeah, you’d need security and power crews and stuff, but still!

                1. Hey, auxillary backup for the next natural disaster! You wouldn’t have to reduce defensive capability while getting power and water to the disaster area! (And the NGOs who want to board would get real authentic military bunking and rations. That’d motivate them to leave the ship faster!)

                2. Gas turbines have some advantages over nuclear plants that make them a good idea for things like destroyers and frigates. Cruisers are probably at the tipping point of where nuclear makes sense and the gator fleet really should be running on magic rocks. The problem lies in the power crews. The Navy has been free of nuclear accidents in no small part because the people responsible for the care and feeding of Mr. Reactor are carefully selected, highly trained, and thoroughly abused.

                  1. Yeah, running the new USS America on bunker diesel (did they make it use biodiesel yet?) is just about the stupidest decision I’ve seen – basically trading off higher build and commissioning cost for lots and lots of gas bills throughout the life of the ship.

                    1. Hee. Back in June, the Secretary of the Navy came out to my ship for a “Great Green Fleet” photo op of us taking on biodiesel from an Italian oiler. We took on like 1300 gallons, then went to our own oiler to get filled up properly. Even when we’re”using biodiesel” we’re not REALLY using it.

              2. Now, to be fair that depends on the design. The Yankees used S5W tech stolen fair and square.

                In fact during the last days on the Skipjack before decom we joked the Ruskies got us the S5W RPM updates faster than the Naval Reactors because the later forgot we existed.

          3. Solar is less questionable if you put the panels on the roofs of houses (which aren’t doing anything else, like hosting vulnerable flora and/or fauna). On the other hand, power companies don’t seem to know how to make money if that’ s how you install them, so…

            1. wind is the same way. the smaller, especially the vertical rotor style are still rather efficient and don’t kill the fauna like large scale wind or certain solar tax hogs.

        5. Solar hell – We could run nuke desalination plants at a few spots (one up here for the Bay Area, and a couple-three around LA) and completely deal with the “people on coast where dry, water in mountains (or in mountains in Colorado)” geographical problem.

          1. Oooohhh! Eevul badthink! No cookie for you!

            Californicators don’t want any nasty nukular racktors. They don’t want any bird-killing windmills. They don’t want any dirty coal. They don’t want no teachers… they don’t want no thought control…

            1. Yeah, they are shutting down our last Nuke plant at Diablo Canyon. Morons. As the Prof says, I’ll start believing in globular warmening when they start acting like they beileve.

              And for a cheery thought re the murder of the coal industry back east, imagine the exploding heads in Hollywoodland if all the old oil fields down in LA started fracking and putting out more oil than Kuwait…

        6. because they would despoil the environment and have to have large-scale construction that won’t benefit their contributor base- i.e. union construction workers needed to build the high-speed rail that is going to go from one small city to another.

  16. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Enough with the stereotypes! Dear God! Doesn’t anyone think!!!!! anymore!

    1. Yes. They’re called conservatives. And some libertarians (not all, especially the ones who think that Johnson’s got a chance when he could triple his support and still be behind the guy who’s losing the race).

    1. No, no, my grandmother said that too much cake gave you worms, not had worms. Too much icecream also gave you worms, and too much pie, and raw cookie dough, and . . . 🙂

        1. There’s a new sound
          The newest sound around
          And everyone who listens to it quakes
          Because this new sound
          From deep down in the ground
          Is the sound that’s made by cakes?

        1. *proffers certificate good for one thorough carping* I theses puns 95 times on the internet…

              1. Hey! That’s a BAe-146, the cutest little four-engine jet airliner ever. Didn’t know that any had been converted to firebomber use.

                Just noticed that it was dropping on the Soberanes fire near Big Sur. Some of the most beautiful places for photography along the little creeks around there running down to the sea. I spent many days out there trying to get in and out without being covered in poison oak along Soberanes creek.

  17. he can’t allow himself to even hear something mildly non accusatory about Trump, without doing his own private exorcism.

    I’ve repeatedly run into this. It’s particularly bad with Cruz, who is seen by many Trump supporters as a horrible liar for not supporting Trump. For these people, the fact that Trump continues to make wild and completely out there accusations about Cruz’s family is generally dismissed with the online equivalent of a shrug.

    1. Donald Trump isn’t an American because Mr. and Mrs. Fred Trump were working for the Nazis during WWII, and Donald’s real father was a soviet national.

    2. “Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds,” by Charles Mackay, is a classic that explains the behavior of the Trumpists.

  18. There are few things that get my goat up more than an inappropriate “LOL.” I remember one of the few true rants that I’ve ever left on the internet was in response to a comment that read, “Benghazi, LOL.” What precisely makes you “laugh out loud” at the idea of four Americans being murdered? You may not think it was Obama’s fault (despite him clearly trying to ignore that Libya had serious problems), you may think it’s absurd to tie it to Hillary (despite the fact that her “good friend Chris” kept trying to email her about the security issues there), but could you at least have the decency not to treat as an internet joke something that left four families grieving….

    Er, well, you get the flavor of my thoughts there. If that’s what the rant is like several years after the fact, you can imagine what I said at the time. But, yeah, “LOL” in a serious conversation is generally a signal that you’re not dealing with a serious person.

      1. I think, in the interest of accuracy, it would be better expressed as COL — Hillary cackled out loud.

    1. LOL isn’t laughter like we mean it, though. When the poor dears, bless their hearts, chose to run with a crowd where the knives are always out and they’re scrambling not to be the next scapegoat, they use “I was just joking!” or “LOL!” to cover any potential slips in falling behind on the latest groupthink.

      So if they’re too daring in pushing the envelope, or worried they’re getting too close to truth/unapproved groupthink, then they hang a LOL on there or a laughing emoticon as insurance.If the taste makers / people in power reprove them instead of applauding or ignoring, the “I was just joking!” defense is activated, to avoid becoming the target of the next witch hunt.

      We laugh when we’re happy. They, like hyenas, laugh when they think they’re supposed to, or to cover their errors. Bless their black little hearts and shriveled souls, stunted consciences and fear-filled minds.

      1. Are you suggesting that their use of the LOL is an equivalent of a stressed nervous giggle? Interesting.

    1. It’s stopping thinking that’s hard. Once you start, that is.

      I do wonder if, subconsciously, that is what some folks are really afraid of. Once you start thinking, start questioning, where does it end? Those comfortable places you could always know what to say and how to react- Racist! Islamophobic! etc. -they’re gone.

      It’s uncomfortable, thinking is. You gotta have reasons for your reasoning. Lots more complex than just having emotions for your emoting. Got to do some self-examination, too. Thinking always leads to that, somehow. Like when you have your head down in thought, it’s hard not to contemplate your navel. Or something.

      If you’re thinking, the herd spits you out and tries to stomp on you. Can’t have thoughts, those are dangerous. Gotta stick to the Narrative. That Ur-Story they’ve been trying to sell us on for, well, generations now.

      Thinking those thoughts lead to more thoughts, and more after that. Things like, if it’s okay to take away someone’s freedoms for political WrongThink now… What happens when someone else is in charge, someone who doesn’t think like me? Or if I’m a woman, or smaller male, or well, anyone facing three thugs who get their thrills beating and robbing folks, is there ANYTHING that can save me before the police come later to avenge my broken body? Or, if *I* want to be rich someday, and work hard to get there, do I really want to raise taxes on myself and make myself poorer again? If I didn’t want to pay so much in taxes, what could I do to mitigate the effect? Something like, pay my employees less? Or downgrade the product/service I provide?

      Dangerous things, thoughts like that.

    2. King Arthur: How could I learn if I couldn’t think? And I couldn’t think; so, I couldn’t learn. But, even to think the thought, I thought. But, even the thought, I’m not thinking a thought, is thinking, isn’t it?
      Merlyn: Yes! And thinking, boy, is something you should definitely get into the habit of making use of, as often as possible. Thinking helps in everything. Everything but love, that is. Love is a sort of seventh day, so thinking can rest.


  19. While I can’t say I’ve never been laid off or unemployed, since I started my software career I’ve never been unemployed long enough to get unemployment. (Started the paperwork once–then I found a job!) By occupation, geographic location, and genetics my dermal pallor is overwhelming, but I am most definitely female. I obstinately refuse to join any “women’s” clubs or groups, though. Walled gardens are traps for the mind and body, poisonous to growth and strength.

    1. The Oyster Wife was looking at a local women’s business conference the other day. I thought it might be promising: we need badly to make more local connections to get our business off the ground, and women (particularly mothers) do have different challenges to face: logistical, emotional, social, mental… then we looked at the panel and speaker schedule. A lot of touchy-feely hogwash, from the looks of it. I was disappointed. Oh, and their networking sessions? 30 minutes. Who can have more than one half-decent conversation in half an hour?

  20. The way I understand it, Green is a reluctant “will vote for Trump to avoid Hillary,” Whittle is a resolute “will vote for Trump to avoid Hillary,” and Ott is a definite #NeverTrump.

    1. I daresay I am not the only one here for whom “virtue signalling” signals a lack of virtue.

      1. I can’t remember the exact quote– and I can’t find it, because I was on a Chesterton kick AGAIN and it’s all mangled in my head, might be the Evil of Eugenics– but Chesterton had a lovely bit of musing on how some women (I think it was about either not sleeping around or not killing their kids) were as defiant in their virtue as if it were a vice.

      2. HAHHA!

        It will thus be noted that there has always been some connection between a mystical belief and the materials of domesticity; that they generally go together; and that now, in a more mournful sense, they are gone together. The working classes have no reserves of property with which to defend their relics of religion. They have no religion with which to sanctify and dignify their property. Above all, they are under the enormous disadvantage of being right without knowing it. They hold their sound principles as if they were sullen prejudices. They almost secrete their small property as if it were stolen property. Often a poor woman will tell a magistrate that she sticks to her husband, with the defiant and desperate air of a wanton resolved to run away from her husband. [178]Often she will cry as hopelessly, and as it were helplessly, when deprived of her child as if she were a child deprived of her doll. Indeed, a child in the street, crying for her lost doll, would probably receive more sympathy than she does.

  21. Whenever you hear a liberal shibboleth thrown in at random, it is almost always followed by “LOL” which is even more out of place

    Liberal Obfuscating Logic?

  22. You may be being charitable towards him. His “Like I’m going to listen to white males, LOL.” comment suggests to me that he believes that white males hate him and want to destroy him thus it is laughable that he would listen to them. In other words he is paranoid delusional in a very racist way.

      1. And I’m sure that outrages him. There are people out there who would much rather be hated than ignored.

  23. Test, This is a test of the word targeted. If WordPress allows this posting to go through they are not censoring posts with the word targeted in them. Please ignore this post if you see it as it will mean that WordPress is not quite as evil and stupid as I suspected.

    We now return you to Sarah’s regularly scheduled party. Have a nice day.

    And Judge Posner is still a moron.

  24. Main reason I stay off Facebook. Of course, other “social media” ain’t much better. I ran into an alleged Jewish rabbi on Twitter, who claimed to be thecworld’s leading authority on antisemitism, calling for the destruction of white privilege.

    You know, the Jewish expert on antisemitism who can’t see the problem with targeting an imagined privileged class.

    1. “You know, the Jewish expert on antisemitism who can’t see the problem with targeting an imagined privileged class.”

      This thread:

      There’s a comment that made me laugh my socks off, but I’ll come to that…. The overall complaints on the thread is the use of the word “Oriental”. Apparently this is a slur.

      Anyways. One of the most recent comments was:

      “If you are part of the people in default privilege then it’s not… You know this is 101 stuff you can look up using Google. Use, don’t use, learn, educate yourself, or look foolish. It’s up to you.”

      by Tasha Turner. (I’ve been reading File 770 for some time now, and am pretty sure Tasha is Jewish. I could be wrong, but hey.)

      This was in response to her using “whitesplaining” and being accused of racist language. Her use of “mansplaining” got a pass.

      The best comment though, comment of the year, from JJ:

      “I just love how you’re calling a group of intelligent, courteous and considerate adults an ‘echo chamber’.”

      And, yes, JJ is talking about the File 770 comment threads.

      1. It is amazing how racist and sexist the File770ers are. Of course, they claim that they are the GOOD kind of racists and sexists, and they are simply horrified when someone dares to say that it is wrong to attack anyone because of their race, regardless of what that race is.

        For me, the best part was when the question arose of how many people of race X have to think that term Y is bad before Y is deemed offensive. Most 770ers seemed upset that the question was even asked, but we finally got an answer: if 90% of people of a certain race think that a term is perfectly fine, then it should be banned immediately! The feelings of the 10% who don’t like it are far more important than the vast majority. *sigh*

        1. The percentage holding an opinion doesn’t matter, even when an overwhelming majority — they’re the holders of the non-voting shares, their opinions don’t matter. Theirs is the duty to fall in behind the legitimate owners of the group’s identity and toe the party line.

  25. “one man who works in computers and has been continuously employed since 2001. My husband. ”

    Actually, Sarah, you know two. Continuously employed in IT since 1985. 18 years (currently) with an IT top 5.

    1. Well, Dan was unemployed in 2001. For three months I think, but it was semi-voluntary. I mean, yes, he was laid off, but it was because he was refusing assignments on the East coast, because they took almost two days to get there right after 9/11 and flights cut-backs.

  26. I know the backgrounds of the three men in the video and none of them pledged a fraternity and if one belongs to a country club it’s not what this commenter imagines.

  27. I have not one white male friend who fits that stereotype the commenter invoked.

    That might be because it is from at least the 70s– and if I remember The Graduate correctly, it’s at least half a century old. Of course it’s out-dated, same as the dum-dums who think that because I’m a house maker I own a string of pearls, a classic vacuum and have a Valium addiction. (Oooh, boy, is that second one Not Accurate– they gave me half a pill when I had dental surgery in the Navy, I think in case of jaw spasms, and I entirely lost the three days I was SIQ. I cannot imagine something less pleasant or prone to induce anxiety. But it’s in a song from The Golden Era so it must be True!)

    1. Nothing will turn me off a work faster than the assumption that everyone in suburbia is leading a life of quiet desperation. It usually comes from urban types who would be bored to death outside a city, but how provincial do you have to be to not realize that there are people not like you?

      1. ….as provincial as the extroverts who are just SURE that introverts will “blossom” into extroverts if they’re pushed right?

        1. Can we get those people designated as reactive targets in the Newspeak dictionary?

      2. Funny – I’d think you’d have to live a life of desperation to live IN a large city!

        1. Maybe that’s the thing… a whole lot of the folks I know in the city are, well, in quiet desperation; they’re only kept going because they think that ____ in the city will pull them out of it, as best I can tell. (the ones I know that are happy would be happy no matter where they are, if the Stuff That Matters was there)

          I guess it makes sense that they’d assume their situation is normal, but folks in other places don’t have the hope.

          1. Living in cities can be fun. Chicago is a crappy place in a lot of ways, but it gives me an inexplicable lift to visit it, even if I find myself in crappy Chicago places. (Okay, maybe it’s the wind off the lake, but….)

            Still, I think I prefer suburbs or the country.

            1. Just think: but for Obama’s persuasiveness the Summer Olympics this year might be occurring in Chicago.

          2. The source of that quote is Henry David Thoreau, in Walden, and it is a) assuredly referring to urbanites and b) refers to a general sociall depravity:

            “The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation. What is called resignation is confirmed desperation. From the desperate city you go into the desperate country, and have to console yourself with the bravery of minks and muskrats. A stereotyped but unconscious despair is concealed even under what are called the games and amusements of mankind. There is no play in them, for this comes after work. But it is a characteristic of wisdom not to do desperate things.”

            Which broadly ignores the much greater societal wealth we currently enjoy. Why, they didn’t even have MP3 players back then, much less smart phones and Pokémon Go!

    2. Re: Valium — actually, a lot of women on Valium for stress and bad dreams then ended up with depression, sluggishness, stress, and worse dreams. It was a great drug for keeping psychiatrists in business, I guess.

  28. Herr Doktor Freud, your slip is showing …

    Clinton mistakenly refers to Trump as her ‘husband’
    Hillary Clinton nearly called her rival Donald Trump her “husband” before quickly correcting herself and saying Trump was her “opponent.”

    The embarrassing gaffe came as she addressed the National Association of Black Journalists and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists on Friday in Washington, DC.

    As Clinton detailed her policy proposals to the assembled journalists, some were applauding.

    — — —
    Of course they were.

    1. Clinton mistakenly refers to Trump as her ‘husband’

      I suspect that when Donald Trump heard of this a sick cold shiver ran down his spine at the thought.

      1. I gotta say, at this point I’m not sure their throwing over their current partners and running away together could make the year any weirder.

        1. Won’t happen.

          Trump may be crazy but he’s not stupid. 😉

              1. She reminds me of one of the politicians from Spinrad’s “Last Hurrah of the Golden Horde.”

                They’d been dead for a while, and bits kept falling off, but the robotic control systems kept them smiling and shaking hands anyway…

                1. Second data point:

                  What is going on in those first ten seconds?

                  The Secret Service agents’ move to intervene either contradicts claims about her treatment of them or stands as proof of profound professionalism on the agents’ part.

                  Does anyone think we can trust the Media to provide truth about the candidates’ health?

                  1. UPDATE: Apparently the man coming to Hillary’s rescue in that video is not — repeat: not — a Secret Serrvice agent.

                    No Secret Service agent would touch the candidate in that way. Apparently he is her [REDACTED] and carries her Diazepam auto-injector pen (typically used for for Acute Repetitive Seizures.)


                    I apologise for prior error. HT: Chris Muir, daybydaycartoon[DOT]com/2016/08/08

                    1. N.B. — Diazepam
                      Common brands: Valium, Diastat
                      It can treat anxiety, muscle spasms, and seizures.
                      Controlled substance
                      Can cause paranoid or suicidal ideation and impair memory, judgment, and coordination. Combining with other substances, particularly alcohol, can slow breathing and possibly lead to death.

                      May treat Petit mal seizures, Drug withdrawal, Dystonia, Epilepsy, Cerebral palsy, Agoraphobia, and a variety of inner ear disorders.

                      You coulds Google it.

                      Or wait for the always inquisitive reporters in the Mainstream Media to investigate this and deliver a full explanation clean bill of health.

                2. One last item on the agenda: see Scott Adams.

                  Drug Testing Presidential Candidates
                  Would you feel safe voting for a presidential candidate without knowing which prescription drugs he or she is taking?


                  Prescription meds change your body too, often in substantial ways. When your body changes, your mind follows. The prescription meds says that very thing right on the warning label. Many of them even warn against suicidal thoughts.

                  So if you think prescription meds don’t CAUSE thoughts, you are not current with modern science. A person on prescription meds is essentially a chemical cyborg – part human, part science experiment.

                  This brings us to Hillary Clinton.

                  Clinton looks unhealthy to me, and to many observers. And she has had some unexplained episodes that look like leftover brain damage from her concussion, or from a stroke, or something. See Mike Cernovich explain this one. I’m not a doctor, so my medical opinion has zero credibility. But there is certainly a legitimate question here. If voters are not confident in the brain-health of their candidates, that’s as big a problem as you can have.

                  Don’t act like it doesn’t matter. If you do, you’re a science-denier.

                  I also think Trump needs to get tested at the same time. He does have a lot of energy, if you know what I mean. At age 70, nearly all adults are on some sort of meds. Let’s sort it out. Their meds might not be the type that influence decisions.

                  But I doubt it. I doubt it hard.
                  — — —

                  If a candidate is using Ambien at night, shouldn’t we know? Can we rely on the Media to ask that question? Can we rely on the Media to give an honest answer to the public?

          1. Well if they run away together to Brazil and stay away from here, I for one will not be offering any complaints.

            1. As I said before, Trump may be crazy but he’s not stupid.

              It would be stupid to marry Hillary (and that says something about Bill). 👿

              1. I am surprised y’all ain’t picked up on the most obvious interpretation of this: in Hillary’s head, husband and opponent are synonymous. In defeating Trump she will be symbolically defeating Bill.

              2. Bill wasn’t stupid. He wanted someone who would willingly partner and defend his rape habit.

    2. I think this is my favorite gaffe so far this year… it’s a shame it will never get the air play it deserves.

  29. Brazil was doing so well, until they ran their Alberto Santos-Dumont propaganda piece.

    NBC was doing so well, until they refused to defend the honor of the Wright Brothers, and smirked and said, “The Brazilians say they were liars, and they say they had no witnesses.”

    1. Yes, the Wright Brothers had witnesses on December 17, 1903. And photos. And they kept flying and flying and flying for years. Powered flight where everybody and the cows could see them. The Wright Brothers were also the only people in the world with accurate aeronautical tables, which was why they were so far out in front with powered flight.

    2. Santos-Dumont didn’t get anything done until 1906 or 1907. Latecomer newbie.

    3. The Wright Brothers had figured out and used three different flight-launching systems in the time it took Dumont to figure out one.

    4. Santos-Dumont can only be defined as first if you torture the definition of first.

    Go home, Brazil. You’re drunk.

    1. The Wright Brothers were also the only people in the world with accurate aeronautical tables, which was why they were so far out in front with powered flight.

      I read a children’s book version of the Wright Brothers’ story to my boys when they were a little older (they wanted me to read to them for a LONG time). The reason they were the only ones with accurate data was because everyone else apparently made theirs up without actually measuring anything. The Wrights built scale models of both wings and propellers and did their own measurements in their home-built wind tunnel.

      I had a friend tell me that they were lucky that their plane flew. Since I had read that story, I told him no, they KNEW it would fly. They just knew that they also needed a headwind to be sure.

      1. The other measurements weren’t “made up” but how the measurements were made didn’t give accurate results.

        The other measurements were made using a centrifugal device which gave bad results.

        The Wright Brothers realized the inaccuracies and built a wind-tunnel to get better results.

        1. Yep. The Wrights personally loved, admired, and trusted the guy who made the old aeronautical tables, but after they kept experimenting with them and getting bad results, they finally realized that they had to ditch them all, ditch the tables themselves, and start over. (And they did send letters to various places pointing out that the tables were wrong, but nobody else seemed to want to believe it, even though the bad tables killed so many inventor-pilots.)

          There’s almost no worse feeling in the world than having to ditch all your work and start over from first principles. But it also means that you’re finally on the right track, as soon as you do. The Wright Brothers are probably the best example of that.

      2. They also had Charlie Taylor, the unsung (outside of aviation maintenance) hero who came up with their engines and kept improving, tweaking, and repairing the things to get them light enough and durable enough to work.

        1. Yup, he was awesome. And they had a supportive or neutral family, not one that fought their various ideas.

          Santos-Dumont was a rich kid. Totally different kind of aviation guy, although I have nothing against him personally.

          1. There’s the key — such inventions are supposed to be the “gift” of the wealthy, for only the wealthy have the education and leisure to toy with such fribbles.

            The idea that a couple proletarian tinkerers</I could develop such a thing is … is … unthinkable, intolerable, anathema.

  30. Well, Greek letter fraternities are not very representative. What about Hebrew letters? Shavian? Futhark? Hiragana?

      1. I’d join the APL frat in a heartbeat! Who doesn’t love sorting a list in one line of code with a function like this?

        Q←{1≥≢⍵:⍵ ⋄ S←{⍺⌿⍨⍺ ⍺⍺ ⍵} ⋄ ⍵((∇S))⍵⌷⍨?≢⍵}

        (I admit I had to Google for that, though.)

  31. What I mean to say is that I am racking my brain and I can’t think of a single friend who grew up without at least one of these handicaps: single parent; borderline poverty or extended periods of poverty; unemployment of one or both parents; a serious health/addiction/etc issue in the household. I don’t have any friend who attended college (about half my friends) who didn’t have issues THERE, often graduating in debt and by the skin of his teeth.

    Well, for the first part, about the home life growing up, I’m one who didn’t have any of those problems. However, I definitely had issues in college, and didn’t graduate. And I then provided at least some of that home life as my children were growing up (borderline poverty, specifically).

  32. Yeah, I didn’t have any of those problems, either. Unless you count the fact that I was adopted as a baby. I have always thought that my guardian angel has done a heckuva job to help me out.

    When I graduated from college (with no debt) in 1975, the jobs were pretty scarce, and I worked two jobs. I suppose we were relatively poor in that we could not always pay the electric bill, and only had one vehicle, and I often made it through the month by having another garage sale, but honestly, I guess I’m one of those evil people that your commentor railed against, except I’m female.

    We did belong to a modest country club when I was growing up. I did not belong to a sorority, but my first husband belonged to a fraternity.

    1. I doubt any of those complaining about such privilege have any idea of the origins of fraternities, sororities or even country clubs. Ignorance is a useful aid to bitterness, just as knowledge is an excellent antidote.

      1. There were many, many middle class “country clubs” in the St. Louis area back in the ’60s.
        They were places were parents could take kids to go swimming, play tennis and eat at a snack bar while parents might play 9 holes of golf. There were also country clubs that were pretty damned exclusive, which is why middle class people got together to build country clubs for those who were not the society people in the area.

        1. Living in CA in the nineties, in a lower-middle-class neighborhood, there was a private cabana club about half a mile from my house. The folks who were members were generally a little better off than we were, but not by a lot. It wasn’t all your fancy paints, but it was private and well maintained, and not as chaotic and noisy as the public pools. I believe one of the local swim teams was based there.

  33. Not sure if any of you will find this interesting, but here’s the (fairly typical) view of a foreigner.
    Clinton is just another corrupt, cynical, extremely right-wing american politician. Trump would probably be just more of the same, but playing to a different set of voters, unless he actually believes any of the crazy shit he’s coming out with, in which case he’s a bona fide enemy of humanity.
    Of course, by UK standards, someone advocating Obama’s policies would have been far to the right of mainstream politics.

    1. Only because what you guys get as “right” and “left” is crazy cakes and censored by a To The Left of Stalin Media.
      The Socialist wolf has devoured Europe and the Communist Wolf is having the leftovers. Educate yourself or die.
      And btw, I was European born and raised, and was recently over there. I know what you guys “think.” What I wonder is if you realize how 1984 your world has become.

    2. I am interested in your bona fides to express “the (fairly typical) view of a foreigner.“? Have you done a survey of “foreigners” to distill the common wisdom, or are you under the impression that the views expressed by the select group of news media you imbibe are “typical” — and how would you know?

      Given there are almost 750 million people in Europe, making up fifty countries and several times that number ethnic groups, where do you get the arrogance to imagine you and your (statistically) small number of friends and associates can in any way define yourselves as “fairly typical”?

      That’s just the beginning of your flight of fancy’s crashing and burning. America is not Europe, it was not established on founding principles in any way comparable to European governance and does not lightly accept the structure which led Europeans to three continental wars over two centuries.

      As for Clinton, please define what policies and principles which she has argued which are by you considered “right-wing.” Is it her appeasement of foreign powers, her advocacy of universal government supported health care, or her promise to rule by executive fiat?

      Ignorance is one thing, but when wrapped in smug illusion of being knowledgeable it becomes an insurmountable barrier to self-improvement.

      1. Thank you. I was actually considering a full post based on this. The Europeans’ oft repeated idea that Obama is “right wing” rests on this: he has not disbanded the army or disarmed the populace. That is, they have wholesale swallowed the lie that “war and violence is right wing.” As I said, they are a wholly owned subsidiary of Soviet Agit prop, continuing long after the beast died. They miss the fact that while talking peace, the Soviet Union was the most militaristic empire since Rome. Probably more, actually.
        Another point they might raise is that he hasn’t in essence despoiled bankers and “the rich.” He has done it, of course, by various channels, though he’s despoiled the middle class and all by his nationalizing of 1/3 of the economy. BUT in their minds “still allows commerce” (which btw all of them think is unregulated here. If only) means “right wing.” This is where they’ve missed that all communist systems are in essence crony capitalist systems, after the first flexion of insanity and that communist party members in China ain’t hurting for cash.
        The manure contained in such opinions would be amusing and harmless, if it weren’t cooperating in their own enslavement and their surrender of thinking to their “betters.”

  34. Thought experiment:
    PREMISE: H. Clinton and D. Trump are equally authoritarian.
    QUESTION 1: Will the government bureaucracies react differently to the authoritarian edicts of each and, if so, which would one be abetted and the other be hindered?
    QUESTION 2: Will the authoritarian edicts of each be similar in direction or different? If different, which is better (or less bad)?

Comments are closed.