We Free Men, A blast from the past -November 2nd 2014

We Free Men, A blast from the past -November 2nd 2014

“Secrecy is the keystone to all tyranny. Not force, but secrecy and censorship. When any government or church for that matter, undertakes to say to its subjects, “This you may not read, this you must not know,” the end result is tyranny and oppression, no matter how holy the motives. Mighty little force is needed to control a man who has been hoodwinked in this fashion; contrariwise, no amount of force can control a free man, whose mind is free. No, not the rack nor the atomic bomb, not anything. You can’t conquer a free man; the most you can do is kill him.”

― Robert A. Heinlein

When I was six, I found out that my parents could yell, they could threaten, but they couldn’t actually, physically, get in my brain and make my body do things.  This must have led to a fun and exciting time for my parents, in finishing raising me.

However, to this day, I remember that.  In the ultimate analysis I am free.  People can kill me, but they can’t MAKE me do stuff.  (absent neural programming, which Speaker assures me we don’t have yet.)

In the same way, in the course of almost as many years as Shakespeare’s total life, I’ve found Heinlein was right.

I don’t care how noble a side sounds, how profoundly urgent its benevolent message, if they say “this you cannot think.  This you cannot read.  This you cannot even consider” they are a tyranny in the making. If they get power over you and yours soon you’ll find that it’s “This air you cannot breathe.”

They are also unsure of their logical appeal and their ability to withstand the market place of ideas.  Otherwise, why ban certain thoughts and ideas and points of view?

This is why “political correctness” is a bad thing, because it takes away your tools to think of things properly.  If you can’t even express that men and women might be different, you surely can’t think about it.

It is also why progressivism with its ever growing list of “forbidden terms and words” because of racist sexist and imperialist bad thought (brown bag, really?) is a tyranny in the making.

I read an article this week, from Popehat about gamergate. I would like to say he made some good points, but he didn’t. Impossible to make good points when you mis-define the sides in the Gamergate and (by extension) the SFWA dispute and everywhere your favorite Social (in)Justice Whiners attack.  He seems to have bought into the definition of the sides brought by the SJWs and so views them as mostly urban, educated, often in tech professions, etc.  I.e. “Smart and cutting edge.”  He also seems to think they’re in search of true social justice.  (Le sigh.)  He says he is neither on “team blue” or “team red” (his terms) because while he’s fiscally conservative he’s for gay marriage and he prefers urban environments.  And he defines the opponents to SJWs as homophobes.  (I wonder if he defines them as racist and sexist too?  Including the women and the many gamergaters of interesting racial origin?)

Yeah, by that measurement, and actually including the “well educated” and “citizen of the world” measurements, I’d be in between too.

I’m not in between.  I’m staunchly in opposition to the SJWs.  Why?  Because the sides aren’t as pictured.

Are there some homophobes on the side of Gamergate?  I doubt it, particularly in the States.  Look, most of these people are younger than I, and gay relationships are just a thing that at worst we don’t care about one way or another.  Are there some homophobes on the right side of politics? Undoubtedly.  Probably not as many as there are on the left, though.  (No? Look to their favorite slurs and accusations to people they hate.)  More organized, maybe, though disapproval of homosexuality for religious reasons is not necessarily (or often) homophobia.  (Can be, but I’ve met very few.)

As for educated… pfui.  It’s possible that on the SJW side there are more graduates of “good universities” with impeccable credentials, but listen to them for ten minutes and you realize these credentials were acquired by regurgitating the indoctrination poured down their throats by their patchouli-infused professors.  In fact, if you try to discuss anything real with them, from the history of Western culture, to the real issues of some non-western civilizations, they gape at you like guppies in search of a crumb.  You’re talking of things they were told don’t exist and they can’t think about them, because thinking about them would make them automatically bad people.

So if your head hurts and you’re confused, this is because Popehat mis-defined the sides involved in this dispute.

The SJWs aren’t for equality or inclusion or any of that grand stuff.  They’re not even for upending the “scales of privilege” which at any rate haven’t been as described for at least fifty years.

They are for one thing only “Do as we say, and enshrine us as arbiters of all that’s right and just.”

Because their “system” of competing victimhoods is so confusing and irrational, they need someone to tell you when and how to discriminate, and whether a black handicapped straight woman has precedence over a Muslim, communist, gay guy.  These hierarchies change, too, depending on whim and whatever comes from the top.

So you need to constantly pay attention to the “voices from above” to know what to think and believe.  And even the wrong word you didn’t know was wrong — “lady” — can get you attacked by people who are keeping up with the SJW diktats.

Which means there must be SJWs in charge, and they must be listened to constantly.  IOW they get power to tell you what to do, what to think, what to read and what to believe.  Read or believe the wrong thing, and the pack descends on you like the red brigades on a deviationist.

In fact the whole thing smells of the power struggles in the Soviet Union.

This is not coincidental.

Both systems are tyrannical and aim at controlling your thought.

This you must not read, this you must not think, this you must not see even if it happens before your very eyes.

To be an SJW you must believe that, the long history of life on Earth notwithstanding, the attraction between male and female is arbitrary and part of “conditioning.”  That men and women are both exactly alike save for sex organs, and completely different in that women as historical victims have all the virtues of humanity, including compassion, peacefulness, healing, etc.  That if only we weren’t “oppressed” by a capitalist system, everyone would have enough of what they need/want and there would be no war or strife.  That saying that a 200lb man can carry a 90lb woman under one arm and laugh at her struggles is sexist.  That saying cultures are differently functional is somehow racist (even when the cultures belong to the exact same race, like say, Morocco and Italy.)

In other words, you have to be willing to believe things that just ain’t so and that simply won’t work in the real world.

In the article, Popehat makes reference to how they’re trying to get into gaming because it’s one of the sectors of the economy still doing well.  All the places that the SJWs have colonized before: books, news, industry, corporations are floundering.

It never occurs to him there is a cause and effect here.  As John C. Wright points out, everything they touch they destroy. EVERYTHING.  That is because what they want is power over the human mind, and because their set of beliefs is completely out of touch with reality.

You can’t, for instance, run a corporation as though men and women were exactly the same from the neck up.  As though they were both capable of leadership sure.  Identical, though?  Never.  Women have a completely different style in social relations.  To deny that is the true sexism.

The difference between the two sides is not red and blue, a scheme that changed in my lifetime anyway (Really, since when isn’t red communist?  Were they afraid of the linkage?)

The difference is between the bound and the free, the mentally enslaved and those who can read and think anything.

To compare us to the “party of the past” and the “party of the future” and to ascribe to the SJWs the future is to forget that America is not Europe.  Our past is not the staid past of aristocrats and serfs.  It is the past of revolution and freedom.  And none of us is advocating stasis.

We know technology changes, and its changes affect society.  It is the SJWs, the party of the past of Marx and Lenin and Stalin and Mao and other blood stained, dead, and for the most part white males, who are afraid of the change. They own the imagined future of the past and they can’t face the real future with interpersonal communications they don’t control, news they don’t control, entertainment they don’t control.

It is they who want to shut down internet discourse, or at least control it.  It is they who hate the free and chaotic environment online.

It is they who run around telling everyone “this you must not do” and “this you must not think” and “this person you must not associate with” on pain of being ‘worse than Hitler’.

We?

Heck, I gave my sons The Communist Manifesto when they were 12.  I figured it was better they taste the poison from the source, and not from the various repackagers who made it more palatable.  Looked at, in its naked horror, the ideology can’t fail to repel.

I also let them read their fill of various of the diluted sources afterwards, because if you’re armed with logic, the dankiest corners of the SJW universe hold no terrors.  Mostly, they hold boredom, because without the ability to be challenged there can be no independent, individual or new thought.

The two sides are as follows:

They’re the would be slave masters; we’re the free men, holding two middle fingers aloft in their faces.

Yours is the choice.

172 responses to “We Free Men, A blast from the past -November 2nd 2014

  1. “Women are every bit as “strong” as men but they also need to be protected from “nasty words/looks” from men”. 😦

  2. Tyranny of thought. They are trying harder and harder. Especially up here in Kanuckistan where if you even hold the wrong beliefs you can be punished and children removed from your care if the “right” people accuse you of this.

    • I keep waiting for some bunch of buttinski Social Service vermin to catch a load of buckshot pulling that crap.

    • I live in Ontario and I think our media is closer to Russia system where politicians dictate narrative of the day than what we think of as a free press.

      I have pretty much stopped consuming Canadian news entirely, I read US and UK news sources, it is astonishing what they leave out of news here in Canada.

      • Not surprised at all. Participated in a few counter protests in Toronto, and saw the news reports afterwards. The counter protesters were called “reactionaries” and given token coverage, where the larger protest was given full kid glove treatment. Doesn’t help that I have never trusted Canadian news sources for decades.

        • I have never trusted Canadian news sources for decades.

          News sources can always be trusted to promote the version of Truth which advances their agenda; it is the job of news outlets to make sure that agenda is acknowledged in their reporting.

          Sadly, most news outlets today Blacken the agenda of the Right and Whitewash that of the Left.

      • Actually, without arguing what you claim about Canadian media is untrue, I find it generally best to read international press published in a different nation to understand at least the top level of a given nation’s politics. The London press, as a whole, seemed to have better US election coverage even when they were pulling for Hillary because they had just enough distance to not need to fool themselves completely.

        • I agree it is good idea to read foreign press but Canada is something else entirely. Journalists who cover politics get majority of their info from government handlers who’s job it is to provide info to journos.

          And Canada media pretend they are bias free and to prove this, journos are not allowed to have strong opinions, so they end up just parroting whatever The State has told them today.

        • Best take I’ve found to ferret things out: Read opposing national (as much as possible). Read Opposing LOCAL as much as you can. Read Friendly but roughly disinterested. Read enemy (my Russian helped with this a fair amount though I’m too rusty to do it reliably now.) Compare/contrast. Pretty soon you start getting a feel for how each set spins an issue and you can figure out what’s really going on. At least roughly.

        • Only if they do their own reporting. A lot of ferrin news agencies just reprint stuff from the AP

    • Paul Koning

      Tyranny of though — nice phrase. That is in fact the rule in the rest of the world. It’s obvious in China and Russia; it’s also present though slightly hidden in places like Western Europe. Sometimes the truth leaks out, as in a Christmas speech by the Queen of Holland (which is an official government statement, not a personal opinion) in which she stated that “there is no right to offend”. No indeed, as people like Ayaan Hirsi Ali or Geert Wilders found out. If you are looking for freedom of speech, stick to the USA. It may be under attack there too, but at least there is a Constitution which clearly protects it. You at least have a theoretical argument in your favor. Not so elsewhere, where there aren’t real constitutions.

      • That’s one of those things I point out when I’m counseling Citizenship in the Nation and Citizenship merit badges. The only nation in the world without an official censor or censorship agency, and with no way to create one because of that first amendment thingy, we’re the only nation that actually has free speech and freedom of the press. Everyone else lies and says they have it.

        And it’s one of those things Democrats really hate now that they don’t control all the news outlets. The existence of the internet has convinced them that journalists should be licensed, and only licensed journalists should have free speech protections. And that the government needs to set up an agency to ferret out bad speech and haters.

        • acquaintances in the UK insist they have it, and then i bring up that pesky ‘subject to the power of parliament’ part.

        • Yes, in the UK the “constitution” is simply the latest set of laws, subject to change at any time to any extent.
          The Dutch case is more hilarious, and worth pointing out. It appears to have a written constitution, which appears to guarantee assorted things. Well, it does limit it by saying that your freedom of speech is “subject to everyone’s responsibility under the law”. But then it blows it near the end, in article 120 which states that no judge is authorized to judge the constitutionality of any law or treaty. In other words, there is this nice piece of paper with the word “constitution” written on the cover, but it doesn’t actually mean anything — you can’t ask anyone to enforce any right it pretends to grant.

  3. Scifibookguy

    Regarding red/blue, back in the 1980’s, the Republicans were blue and the Democrats were red. I believe they changed it because of the association with red and socialism/communism, which the Democrats champion. So the media dis-associated the Democrats from red.

    • As much as I like the conspiracy theories I think it was an accident. Which color represented which part in TV coverage floated around. In 2000, which was the closest presidential election in over a century (yes, closer than 1960 if only because Nixon put country before self…that’s right Senator Gore, you proved yourself less honorable than Tricky Dicky) and thus in any living memory the networks had all used Dem=Blue and GOP=Red.

      Given the lazy thinking and herd mentality of journalists Red State/Blue State quickly became short hand for the sides.

      To be honest I don’t think most of the MSM is self-aware to think making Red=Dems would invoke the Red scare (and I think neutered public education would have hindered it catching on en mass) and thus doubt the association was intentionally picked to avoid such thoughts.

      • kenashimame

        I always thought that the Red/Blue dichotomy came out of the Red Flag exercises, and their Army counterparts. Blue were the “good guys,” and Red were the Aggressors.

      • “living memory the networks had all used Dem=Blue and GOP=Red”
        I’m not sure how that worked in 1960, because few, if any folks had color TV’s in 1960.

        • In 1984 there was the color differentiation – but at least some in broadcasting still concerned themselves with how things looked in black 7 white. A fellow I knew was quite annoyed that NBC (he worked at an affiliate) used shades of red and blue that looked very close if not indistinguishable on the B&W monitors (not all were color) in the station. Granted, in 1984 the difference was not a huge divide, but still.

          • That is – one didn’t have to deal with very much of what is now said to be blue. As I recall, MN was uncertain until very late – and DC was blinking to be seen. As Mark Russell put it, DC was blinking as if to say “…help me… help me… ala The Fly.

  4. This is not the comment you are looking for.

  5. ” As for educated … but listen to them for ten minutes and you realize these credentials were acquired by regurgitating the indoctrination …. ”

    Both my paternal grandparents had autodidact tendencies and both were removed from school when 10 years old and sent to work in coal mine and as charwoman during great depression.

    Both my grandparents read a lot of non fiction and my granda was fond of saying – “educated and intelligent are not synonyms, someone might have many letters after their name but how smart they are remains to be determined”.

    • Education, intelligence, and reason may have some passing relationship, but they are by no means synonymous.

    • “There are some ideas so dumb that only the highly educated can believe them.”
      More or less attributed to Geo. Orwell

      • Orwell wrote some very accurate things about socialists, and what they are like, eighty years ago that are still accurate today.

        There is anti authority, anti intellectual strain that is very prevalent in UK and US that I don’t think exists elsewhere. I am Canadian with British ancestors so I am interested in that culture, classical liberal/libertarian type of thinking is native to UK as far as I can tell. Most cultures obey authority or leaders while Brits seem to really care about their autonomy, which was passed on to America.

        • Anti-authoritarianism isn’t a bad thing. It retards the growth of tyranny, and encourages healthy skepticism in anything said or done by the government.

          As for the anti-intellectualism, I’m not sure we all agree on the definition. Is an intellectual someone who knows a lot, someone who has a lot of educational certificates and diplomas, someone who contemplates the whichness of the why, someone purported to be smart but with no common sense or practical experience, or something else?

          • I think Robert Bork defined intellectual best (note, he could clearly include himself within the bounds of the definition): From memory it was along the lines of “an intellectual is someone who makes his living manipulating abstract constructs of the mind as opposed to those in the real world.”

            Lawyers and writers are intellectuals by that definition. I would argue computer programmers are for the most part. Engineers and musicians are in an odd space and might or might not be depending on the shape of their work. Professors generally are.

            Note his definition makes mention of education, intelligence, desire to learn, etc. I think that is important as so many examples prove you can be an intellectual, say a writer at Vox, and lack one or more of those things while you can be a non-intellectual, say a longshoreman, and be well informed and intelligent.

            • you can be a non-intellectual, say a longshoreman, and be well informed and intelligent.

              What, you mean like Eric Hoffer?

              There’s a name to make a body feel old.

              • Throughout the course of my life, the self-declared intellectuals have demonstrated time and time again that the old dictum of “If you have to tell someone that you’re something, you probably ain’t…” still holds true.

                What’s astounding to me is that so many of these people are never questioned by the rest of us. Walter Cronkite stands up and declares the Vietnam War lost, and everyone just fell in line behind him among the drooling classes, same way they fell in line with Al Gore about “globull warmening…”. And, the sad fact is, when you start actually looking into the depths of what these self-pronounced geniuses have written, said, and done, well… There usually ain’t all that much “there” there, to begin with.

                Look at the classic sources of left-wing thought: Marx never fully defined an awful lot of the basic terminology of what he was blathering on and on about–Try reading through his stuff, and pinning down what the hell the various terms he used in his arguments actually meant. There’s zero consistency–Here the word “value” is half-defined as this, there it’s something else, and in a third place, he uses it differently still. I used to put it down to bad translation, but I’m told by German-speaking students of his that it’s pretty much the same in the original.

                The one thing you can rely on, I’ve found, is that someone who has to tell you that they’re smart, or an intellectual…? Usually ain’t.

                I once knew someone who made a point of having a leather-bound, extra-deluxe set of the Great Books on display in their home. I inquired, once, if they’d ever actually read them, and the answer was a horrified “No…”. They were, you see, merely there for display. I once tried to borrow a volume or two out of the collection, and had my hands slapped for having had the temerity to sully them with human touch.

                Most of the so-called “intellectuals” I’ve known are similar creatures; they are more like the cargo cultists of the South Pacific than they realize, or would even be willing to acknowledge. They have paid more attention to the forms than the substance, and lost sight of what is actually the fundamental base of what they claim to be. Those untouched “Great Books” they so proudly display, never reading? Those are their versions of the bamboo control towers and rock-strewn airfields laid out in the jungles by the cargo cultists… And, are just about as likely to actually provide result.

                • Indeed – if you have to tell people that you are … something or other; a lady, an intellectual, or whatever … then it’s probably pretty certain that you are NOT.

              • It’s like you knew who I had in mind when I wrote that.

          • Intellectuals are French males who write polemics on the state of their society, country and are constantly asked to appear on news shows or current affairs to give their opinions on everything.

            Intellectual is specific job title, jobs herbn lists are proper jobs with specific parametres, objectives. Authors who appear in news to comment on issue of day, those people would be called intellectuals.

            Here in Canada, Margaret Atwood use to constantly appear in news telling us her opinion on government policy or what she thought of Canadian society.

          • Anti-authoritarianism is *always* bad … for the authorities.

        • There is anti authority, anti intellectual strain that is very prevalent in UK and US …

          This strain is helped by the recognition that so many of those in authority and among the intelligentsia are little more than wankers and as useful as nipples on a boar hog.

          Such attitudes tend to make our militaries far more effective than those of other nations, as we recognize that a first sergeant effectively outranks a second lieutenant.

          Just as twenty years experience on the shop floor carries more weight than the shop engineer’s engineering design ink-not-yet-dry diploma.

      • Michael Brazier

        The exact quote is from “Notes on Nationalism”:
        I have heard it confidently stated, for instance, that the American troops had been brought to Europe not to fight the Germans but to crush an English revolution. One has to belong to the intelligentsia to believe things like that: no ordinary man could be such a fool.

    • Reminds me of a Dragnet episode, They’d busted a guy for some kind of fraud, and the janitor was at the glass in the door to scrape off the guy’s name. He asks Friday how the guy got all those letters after his name. “The easy way: had them painted on.”

  6. There is a collection of video clips on Youtube where pairs of young adults are given a selection of favorite ethnic foods from cultures other than their own. I find their comments and reactions both amusing and informative. Most clips are 3-5 minutes, but they did one that ran for ten with three people who had escaped North Korea, offering them American BBQ, which they for the most part enjoyed immensely.
    Several comments from these escapees stood out for me.
    Given American eating implements one held up his fork and remarked that he had heard of this tool. In NK they are told to call it the same name as a farm tool used to scoop manure.
    A young woman stated that she had never tasted beef as it was a crime punishable by death to kill and eat a cow in NK. With no machinery for farm work oxen must be used for jobs that require massive strength. And if a cow does die the soldiers must be notified and will then take it away.
    She also remarked on how her early impressions when first coming to South Korea were how bright it was and how much food was available. Seeing people in restaurants leave food on the table astounded her.

    • Hunger at this point in human history is not the automatic state of man but a deliberate political policy.

      • And ain’t it curious how the wise enlightened centrally planned logical systems are the ones with terrible and chronic shortages… and the screwy, random, chaotic, decentralized (or at least not so tightly centralized) tend to have surpluses of… damn near everything – and the ability to produce “unnecessary” (but desirable, even useful) things? Sure, they also get some weird nonsense (cabbage patch dolls, fidget spinners, pet rocks…) but there’s so much that that isn’t a drag on things.

        • The Communists are fond of talking about how they enjoy “economic rights” rather than “political rights” and that you have to break a few eggs to make an omelet…but it’s strange how omelets (either literal or figurative) are hard to come by in their countries.

        • You are overlooking the clear and obvious benefits here.

          In the wise enlightened centrally planned logical systems the terrible and chronic shortages are very evenly distributed among the general populace.

          In the screwy, random, chaotic, decentralized (or at least not so tightly centralized) those surpluses of… damn near everything are very unevenly distributed among the general populace.

          • Ain’t it grand we gets to choose our surpluses, to at least some degree? Why, there must be a surplus of baseball tickets at least some of the time, as many stadium seats are not filled. And yet I’ve never had a single such ticket. This is not a problem as I also have no desire to attend a ball game.

    • “Seeing people in restaurants leave food on the table astounded her.”

      Admittedly, it would astound me too, because I’m firmly of the opinion that, unless the meal was really awful, whatever you don’t eat should be lunch the next day. Sometimes I deliberately order the larger portion in hopes of getting two lunches out of it.

      I’ll never understand the people who don’t eat leftovers.

      • I tend not to as I find that any leftovers tend to just get ignored and then go bad and so are wasted all the same. Actually, perhaps worse for the energy wasted in the failed attempt at preservation. Thus my ideal is to only order or prepare “just enough.”

        • I love leftovers but never seem to have any to take home. My wife on the other hand usually does. . . I have a rule with her. If its in the fridge more than 2 days after eating out, its mine!

          It actually makes me angry to see people go to a restaurant and leave half their meal on the plate. I hate the waste.

          • $SPOUSE prefers to cook in batches; her chicken-and-sauce (really good, especially with home-grown dehydrated tomatoes in the sauce) is prepared for three dinners, with the first eaten straight, and the next two frozen. Similar mode for most other meals. Homemade bread time is pretty much an all-day affair, but the rice bread will last 6 weeks. So yeah, leftovers is a way of life.

            Our last purchase of chicken breasts got some monster pieces. I had to overcome my clean-the-plate habit; a split breast is enough for dinner and a large lunch. (Foster Farms is getting some huge birds. They taste like chicken…)

            Some restaurant meals (the rare chinese lunch) will entail some leftovers, but the taqueria has some appropriate sized dishes.

      • One egg, a cup of kimchee, and a cup of rice. That was a good breakfast downtown when I was stationed in South Korea in 1981.

        • Prosperity has a way of changing dietary habits.

          South Korea circa 1981 bore only limited similarity to South Korea, circa 1990, and was probably unrecognizable by about 2000. I was there in 1990, and again in 2000–On that tour, one of the guys I was there with had last been in Korea back at the very beginning of his career, around 1979. First two months he was there it was like watching a live-action Rip van Winkle movie, because he was in a continual state of “WTF…?”. Where there had been one-lane dirt roads between rice paddies, there were now four-lane highways, and the urbanization flatly blew his mind.

          • I was in South Korea 1979 and then again in 1989. Huge differences could be easily noticed in that 10 year time frame. Visited PI also those same two years. Just as depressing, corrupt, and crooked the second time as it was the first.

            Two entirely different cultures, two entirely different results.

            • You mean people don’t generically progress through history but follow paths determined by their values and choices?

              *mind blown*

            • Also, two entirely different climates. A fact that I suspect plays into a lot of things.

              Filipino friend of mine touched on why he thought the PI was basically so FUBAR: His theory was that the hot climate, the fertility of the soil, and everything else like diseases that goes with a tropical paradise contributed to a lot of the factors that go into making the PI what it is. His essential point was that if you were to transplant the average group of Filipinos into a climate where “pucking everathin up alla time” had actual starvation-level consequences, then the Filipino political and cultural behavior would be a hell of a lot different. I don’t know that I agree with him, but I do think there’s something to the point that when you’re living in a climate like is prevalent on the Korean peninsula, screwing up your long-term planning and agriculture has consequences that express themselves in cultural features, same as the Northern European/Southern European dichotomy.

              The way he saw it, in the PI, you basically go out and stick a seed or a cutting into the soil, and you’d better stand back or you’re gonna get your eye taken out by whatever you planted. That militates for a certain insouciance towards future planning: “Life’s too easy in the PI…”, as he put it. On the other hand, where you’ve got a just a few months of growing season, and that’s gotta feed you the rest of the year? Yeah. Screw that up, and you’re starving come February. Which is why your average Scandihoovian up in Minnesota usually has their s**t packed together fairly well, because they don’t dare screw things up.

              I’m not saying I completely agree with him, but it does help explain a lot of things about how various countries have developed, over the centuries. Mexico, for example: In 1790, if you’d been asked to identify the likely superpower of the Americas, Mexico might have been a justifiable choice: They already had a strong central government, a much larger industrial base, and a fairly diverse economy, at least compared to the rag-tag lot of half-ass English and French colonies along the Atlantic. Yet, by 1840, the Mexicans couldn’t even manage the task of self-government, let alone resist the descendants of those half-ass colonies to the North. I think at least some of that factor may well be due to the nature of the cultures that were able to adapt and thrive in the more inclement climates of the 13 colonies. Mexico, in short, had it too easy.

              • If your friend’s theory is valid we ought be able to find evidence of it in Europe in response to climate change, such as the Maunder Minimum or other long-lasting events. Controlling for migration we should see changes in indigenous cultures over time. Possibly difficult to distinguish between climate and demographic effects, though: did the Scandinavians invade Britain in the 9th Century because of climate or population effects?

                In fact, I think we have one or two Huns practically engaging in such study already, albeit with a slightly different focus.

              • You have a very good point, re – Mexico in the early 1800s. They should have been the kings of the continent, with everything going for them, geographically, culturally, socially – and yet … it all fell apart, within ten or fifteen years of gaining independence from Spain, or maybe even before that. I blundered into some awareness about the Centralist-Federalist schism in the early 1800s when I was doing research for my books set in that period, Basically – the first of any number of Mexican civil wars. I’ve lost track of how many Mexico has had since then – about five or six, I think.

                • I am not nearly enough of an expert on Mexican history to be able to tell you all the details of “what went wrong”, but I think we can be fairly certain of at least one major contributing factor: They never really had to get their act together, in order to survive, so… They didn’t.

                  By way of contrast, the colonies that became the United States really didn’t have that option. Given the fact that the Northeastern US ain’t exactly an agricultural wonderland, and hasn’t got a hell of a lot going in terms of mineral wealth, either…? Well, it was “root, hog, or die…”, pretty much the way it was for the Japanese when they came out of their long somnolence.

                  I think one reason, too, that the South Koreans pulled off what they did had a good deal to do with that existential threat to the North… The prospect of conquest by a totalitarian neighbor does wonders when it comes to concentrating the mind. In the PI, no existential threat, likewise with Mexico. Sure, the Mexicans had to worry about the Norteamericanos eventually, but we were never the kind of threat to their very existence that the South Koreans had to worry about. At worst, the US taking over Mexico might have resulted in them becoming prosperous and well-organized… Not a thing to make one cease with the various self-destructive BS cultural aspects that make Mexico what it is today, essentially dysfunctional as a nation-state. The constant whinge about them being “So far from God, so near the United States…” only makes sense in the context that with the knowledge that the US is a relatively benign neighbor, they can continue on their feckless way. If the US was more along the lines of, say, North Korea, and the Mexican elite knew that there was a good chance they’d be going into re-education camps as soon as we crossed the Rio Grande, they’d knock off the boolsheet ric-tic, and figure out a Mexican path to self-sufficiency and prosperity. As it is, they can continue to laze away in the shadow of the US, knowing that they are pretty much safe from everything but themselves.

                  • WordPress delenda est… There’s an unclosed html coding for italics up there that I missed…

                    [sigh]

                    Secondary thought occurs to me, as well, vis-a-vis the nature of what’s different between Mexico and the US: Let us posit, for a counter-factual, that instead of the initial colonization of North America taking place in the Northeast, with all of its nasty weather, poor prospects for agriculture, and low mineral resources, that the initial point of colonization was instead another region, one where living was easy, and there wasn’t much real challenge to life–Say, California or the Pacific Northwest. What would the effect have been on the history of North America?

                    I’m kinda leaning towards “A great deal different…”, because the people that were attracted and which would thrive in those circumstances might not have been too much different than the Spanish Hidalgos that overran California, and then didn’t do too bloody much with the place besides raise cattle, horses, and pretty-pretty vaqueros. It’s an interesting question, that one…

                    • I don’t know. The history of the Bahamas seems to indicate that the root culture is more important than climate. Another example would be Haiti vs. the Dominican Republic. Same island, same climate, different root cultures, vastly different outcomes.

                    • I sometimes wonder how things would have played out if Grant had managed to get his Santo Domingo Treaty through Congress, rather than having Carl Schurz and his ilk derail it.

                    • Feather Blade

                      one where living was easy, and there wasn’t much real challenge to life–Say, California or the Pacific Northwest. What would the effect have been on the history of North America?

                      They’d have had to move across the mountains at some point, and what’s on the other side was days-worth of inhospitable (being rainshadow desert) until all of the dam projects went in.

                      Once you get to the hospitable parts of the Inland Northwest, you have to deal with winter, clay soil that likes to wash away in the rain, and limited growing season anyway.

              • That’s been a theory about the California natives versus the ones to the northeast. Though it does appear that there *was* agricultural planting going on; it’s just that if your crop is acorns, the planning happens across generations.

                • A lot of what passed for agriculture in the Americas was unrecognizable to Europeans. The Northeastern Indians were relatively sophisticated in their practices, but recognizing them wasn’t at all easy. They planted loads of trees that bore nuts, to the point that when the mass die-offs happened, that enabled the population boom for the carrier pigeon of mass memory. There is limited to no evidence that the carrier pigeon ever formed a significant part of the North American diet before the epidemics wiped out most of the native population, so it appears that what enabled the massive boom in their population was the sudden availability of unfettered access to all those human-planted and cared-for nut trees that the colonists assumed were just naturally there.

                  Similar things were going on in the Amazon basin, where the first Spaniards through described massive populations of natives and significant agriculture and urbanization existing–Only for it to vanish when the inhabitants died off after the first Spanish-speaking people showed up. Everything in the Amazon basin that we’ve taken for being “nature’s bounty” was actually more likely the result of human agriculture.

                  Had the natives not been so easily taken out by European bad hygiene practices, it would be interesting to see what might have transpired in the Northeast–The native agricultural practices might have been more visible, and thus more notice would have been taken of them, to our benefit. Of course, had the die-off not happened, the history of European colonization efforts would probably look a lot more like that of the Norse’s attempts.

                  • Also note that the “primitive” cultures were bands of survivors; IOW post-apocalyptic groups. We really have no idea what many of the cultures were like pre-germ.

              • Right, someone who looked at the immaterial factors might have argued otherwise.
                Mexico, in the main, was colonized by men who wanted to be masters, while the English and French North American colonies weren’t–and, I would argue, you can see the master/yeoman dichotomy at play in those colonies as well–just look at Louisiana vs. Quebec, or the Deep South vs. the Northeast. On the other hand, then you run into the climatological differences again…

              • Kirk, unless your friend’s my husband, he’s pretty much got the same theory. Except in my husband’s case, he came up with it to explain why Europe ended up ruling the world instead of Africa.

          • IIRC, the late ’80s were when South Korea finally started having democratic national elections for president.

      • I’m not astounded. I’ve left behind food at restaurants plenty of times. I’ve eaten parts of meals that I’d not want more of ever. I’ve had leftovers I know reheat poorly, so left them behind. I’ve been out-and-about and knew I couldn’t refrigerate leftovers soon enough. And sometimes the amount leftover just isn’t worth it.

      • Dorothy Grant

        *waggles hand* Depends on if it’s a meal or a treat. See, I’m supposed to limit my starches and sugars… but there comes a time, every now and then, when a gal just needs a steak with garlic smashed potatoes and a giant slice of chocolate cake.

        When I’ve made my way through as much of it as I’m going to, it’s far better for me to leave the leftovers on the table and resume healthy eating the next meal, instead of taking them home and throwing my body completely off for two days in a row.

        But it sure does feel weird to leave food behind.

      • Same here. We have a once-monthly meet-up with some other ladies of a certain age, at a different restaurant every time. And most of us walk away with go-boxes. I just cannot eat anything more than half a sandwich, or a burger.

    • As a tangent, I saw one where older Chinese ladies (parents to American immigrants) were given Panda Express. While many of them had quite legitimate complaints as to the authenticity, at least one of them loved the food regardless.

      (It’s not just young adults; it’s also kids. And there are several different makers of the videos. I recently saw one by an American snack company, giving unusual American snacks to Americans who had never heard of them.)

  7. “As for educated … but listen to them for ten minutes and you realize these credentials were acquired by regurgitating the indoctrination ….”

    (Nods) The internet has allowed for the revenge of the educated but uncredentialed, both for good and for ill.

  8. This you may not read, this you must not know,

    Were I to join a cult I would select one with better perqs and more coherent doctrine than the SJWs, Progressives or any of their fellow travelers offer. Something that comports reasonably well with Reality would be a definite plus, but not any of those cults which not only avoid Reality but provide really crappy benefits to members. At least in the Sixties they offered mind-altering drugs and free sex (benefits which, admittedly, seemed more attractive to my adolescent self than they do to my adult.)

    • I’m tempted to create an SJW cult for the $$$ and the LOLs but I’m too afraid of falling into Hubbard’s Error.

      • How about a different SJW group? It might be interesting to see what happens should you manage to make enough sense for, say, Scientifically Justifiable Werewolves.

      • I’ve got a ready built religion for anyone who wants it. One that can be believed in even if you’re an atheist; the main tenets of belief can be true with or without God. The Church of Human Expansion™. Never been able to do much with it because my wife is a very good Catholic…. But if any of you feel like being a prophet, I’ll be happy to share details.

        • See, the danger in being a prophet is Hubbard’s Error: believing your own b*llsh*t.

          Besides, I already have strong Discrodian and SubGenii ties.

          • Who says COHE™ is BS? It’s based on some very believable principles, and is, in fact, compatible with most other existing world religions, with one MAJOR exception. You can hold the beliefs in your currently existing church AND agree with COHE’s beliefs. Or just belong to COHE. It is designed that way on purpose. I’ve often said there are two and only two UNIVERSAL explanations for The Fermi Paradox. There are lots of others, but they’re all simply obstacles that good engineering should be able to overcome. One universal is that we really are alone, God, the Great Ghu, or random chance created only us, and that leads to The Ultimate Anthropic Principle in one way or another. The other is- Berserkers are real, and right now any listening outpost within 100 lightyears or so has informed Berserker Central we’re here, and they’re on their way. And, we need to get ready for them. This makes Saberhagen not just a darn good science fiction writer, but a Prophet in his own right, his visions of mankind’s battles with the Berserkers serving as a warning to be prepared. Don’t know if he wanted to be a prophet, but there have been reluctant prophets in the past.

        • Forgot. The impetus for designing the Church of Human Expansion™ was Jonestown. One of the things that COHE™ will never do is ask you to take your own life. And the other thing was Scientology…. The other person who helped me with the initial idea that if a fool and their money could be that easily parted, we should part them from it and put it to good use.

        • I’ve been practicing human expansion for thirty years. Got the waistline to prove it.

    • Christopher M. Chupik

      If I start a cult, I promise hot chicks in snazzy robes.

      Maybe I’ll just keep the hot chicks.

  9. Back in the 80’s, news stories from the USSR said the leaders who wanted to retain or expand the power of the state were the conservatives. Those who wanted to implement free-market reforms were the liberals.

    In the US, the media described the exact opposite. Those wanting to expand the power of the state were liberals and those wanting the free-market were the conservatives. In both situations, the conservatives were the bad guys.

    At this point I gave up listening to how the media defines politics, left-right, liberal-conservative. I no longer accept their labels on me or anyone else.

  10. One of many issues underlying the Progressive/Left’s instinct to censor is their dlusional self-image. They the nk of themselves as bright, well educated intellectuals, and this is central to their worldview. If they allowed their plans to actually be debated, they might have to face that getting a English Lit. or Ethnic Studies undergraduate degree does not make them part of a Scholastic elite. It makes them the rough equivalent of graduates of a mediocre Ladies’ Finishing School, circa 1910.

    My Mother’s Father graduated from a public High School able to read and write English, Latin, and German, and competent in Math through differential calculus. Henwas thus armed with the knowledge he needed to educate himself. Latin gave him access to the original documents of much of Western History, and a good deal of Science. What Sciencemwasn’t in Latin would probably be in German. And the Math would cover checking peoples’ assumptions.

    The (pseudo)intellectual Left cannot even deal with much that is written in English. The vast majority of them read no other language (neither do I, but I don’t imagine myself running things for more than a horrfied minute at a time). Few of them can even do the simple level of math at which I am semi-competent.

    There are exceptions (most of them, like Chomsky, vile) but it is a big root.

    • It makes them the rough equivalent of graduates of a mediocre Ladies’ Finishing School, circa 1910.

      That is a bit unfair to the finishing school graduates…they would at least have manners and some grace.

      As it is in 2011 SELF had an intensive session called “Charm School” which was my principle reason for going to the event and which is still one of my favorite memories.

      • The mediocre finishing schools of the early 20th Century tended to teach a set of ‘manners’ that had little to do with social reality; the results were found ladies trained in social niceties that fit a distorted view of the late 1880’s. In a very real sense it was the Political Correctness of its day.

    • My undergrad college was founded by a good southern gentleman so that young ladies could have a good education. Then the Presbyterian Church got involved, so it because a college aimed at teaching women who might become missionaries’ wives – the basic classes, plus bookkeeping, domestic science (how to can/pickle/preserve anything that won’t get away), classical languages, and foreign languages. This is the 1880s or so.

      Now, Sweetbriar on the other hand… *evil kitty grin*

    • The (pseudo)intellectual Left cannot even deal with much that is written in English.

      Be fair. It takes considerable effort to take plain English statements and run them through the Transmogrifier to determine what was really intended. Decoding the dog whistles enables them to recognize the neofascist content of, for example, Trump’s recent Warsaw address. It is how they can tell that your expressed hope that they “have a nice day” is actually a tool of the patriarchy designed to trigger and oppress them.

      You cannot reasonably imagine they could do that in multiple languages!

      • Leave their overrich fantasy life out of it. Their command of basic english is so bad that the real reason that most of their hack rags are losing readership has less to do with their political slant than it does to do with their godawful writing. Many really good writers have had slants that I disagree with. Mencken comes to mind, though I also agreed with him some too. But they could flipping WRITE. I disagreed with a great deal of the late Father Andrew Greeley’s worldview, but his characersmwere so,engaging that I read his books anyway. But he had been passed by by the Radical wing of his own faith.

        The Progressive/Left must censor other views in large part because even when they have a solid argument, they write so badly that they are going to lose to anyone coherent.

  11. Christopher M. Chupik

    We still have idiot SJWs, much as we did when Sarah first posted this. What we also have are more people willing to fight them. I look forward to the day when she can post a blast from the past and say “Hey, remember SJWs?”

    • I hate to break it to you, but there will always be SJWs. There always have been. And in some times and places they have been a good thing, too. Right now they are deranged by exposure to a toxic theology; Communism/Socialism. And they always want to go faster than is prudent.

      John Brown was a (an?) SJW. So was William Wilberforce. So, to a degree anyway, was,Teddy Roosevelt. If the current crop got shut of their indoctrination they would doubtless be demanding, loudly, that something wonderfull and impractical be done about the barbaism of the Islamic world.

      • Christopher M. Chupik

        Yeah, but they’ll be called something else by then. Probably “the Evolved Ones of Science” or something ludicrous like that.

        • That sounds like a great name for a group of baddies. Our heroes must infiltrate the secret volcano base of the Evolved Ones of Science to stop them from carrying out there hideous plans. Of course, the Evolved Ones claim its plans are to benefit the “Less Evolved,” but the secret factory building war robots and the small army of violent black-clad supporters suggest otherwise.

        • Whatever they change their virtue signal to, to me they will always be “Mucking Forons.”

  12. Q: What happens when you drink the blood of tyrants?

    A: You wee free men.

  13. Posner News Update:

    Richard A. Posner’s The Federal Judiciary—Part 1
    By Ed Whelan — July 20, 2017
    You sure shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. Seventh Circuit judge Richard A. Posner has just published another book—or, perhaps more accurately, another pretense of a book, with a grand title, stylish cover, and the imprimatur of Harvard University Press. But when you open it up, things quickly turn bad. Indeed, The Federal Judiciary: Strengths and Weaknesses may well be the worst-edited book that I have ever tried to wade through.

    This, alas, is nothing new for Harvard University Press, which seems happy to serve as a vanity publisher for whatever mishmash of ideas Posner slops together. Nine years ago, in my broadly unfavorable review of Posner’s How Judges Think, I observed that the book was “at least one thorough redraft short of being ready for publication” and “reads like a hasty copy-and-paste compilation, with little attention to harmonious coherence.” Ditto, four years ago, for Posner’s Reflections on Judging. (Posner has in lots of other ways amply earned my low regard; here’s just one of many examples.)

    This time, Posner gives a warning of sorts, as he states in his preface that the book “is more a macédoine than a treatise” and “contains a good deal of quoted material.” Macédoine, it turns out, is a fancy word for a confused mixture, a hodgepodge, a jumble, though I’m guessing that Posner intended a more favorable meaning (a mix of fruits or vegetables).

    [SNIP]

    As I said four years ago of Reflections on Judging, Posner’s new book is too wildly undisciplined for me to attempt a comprehensive survey and critique of its arguments. But I will offer some further observations in follow-up posts.

    • So not only is Posner a moron, but so is his editor?

    • RES,

      I’m obviously an infrequent commenter (but regular reader!) here, but if I may make a request of you, I’m really interested in your take/s on Posner. I know little about him and his his legal opinions and legal philosophy, so I don’t want to miss your commentary on him. Sadly, I can’t check all the comments here all the time.

      • Tempting as it is to simply say. “Posner is a moron” and leave it go, I shall instead refer you National Review’s Bench Memos blog whence the above item came.

        I would not presume to opine on specific legal decisions, rulings or opinions except as a layman’s view, but Fudge Posner is as clear an example of a judge who has outgrown his bench as one could hope to find. The “Posner is a moron” claim originated from an interview in which the Posner, who derives his authority as an appellate judge from the US Constitution and the bodies authorized therein, expressed the view that judges are not bound by the Constitution. In arboreal circles this is known as sawing off the tree on whose limb you sit; in Liberal America this is known as enlightened bench-sitting.

        It doesn’t take a Juris Doctor degree to conclude Posner is a strong argument for term limiting judges. They associate with all the wrong kind of people and it tends to warp the thinking of all but the very strongest.

        • Further adventures in Posnerology:

          Richard A. Posner’s The Federal Judiciary—Part 2
          “The dominant theme” of Richard Posner’s new book, he tells us, is “standpattism—more precisely, the stubborn refusal of the judiciary to adapt to modernity” (p. 376). But “the stubborn refusal of the judiciary to adapt to modernity” turns out to be a vapid umbrella label for just not embracing Posner’s positions. Consider:

          1. Posner complains that traditional modes of judicial decisionmaking are “excessively backward-looking” (p. x) because they focus heavily on legal text and precedent. Instead, judges should simply decide what policy is best and work to find a path to get there:

          My approach in judging a case is therefore not to worry initially about doctrine, precedent, and the other conventional materials of legal analysis, but instead to try to figure out the sensible solution to the problem or problems presented by the case. Once having found what I think is the sensible solution I ask whether it’s blocked by an authoritative precedent of the Supreme Court or by some other ukase that judges must obey. If it’s not blocked (usually it’s not—usually it can be got around by hook or by crook), I say fine—let’s go with the commonsense solution.

          Further: “The time to look up precedents, statutory text, legislative history, and the other conventional materials of judicial decision making is after one has a sense of what the best decision should be for today’s society” (p. 82 (emphasis in original)).

          Or, as Posner put it recently, most legal “technicalities are antiquated crap.” Far better for judges to indulge “common sense” than to have a decision “supported by ‘reason,’ whatever that means exactly.”

          So, in Posner’s view, laws are obstacles for the pragmatist judge to work his way “around by hook or by crook.”

          [END EXCERPT]

          RTWT

        • Thanks for the responses. Though it could be argued that Posner’s authority as an appellate judge, while subordinate to the SCOTUS, exists at the discretion of congress, constitutionally speaking that is. I wasn’t aware he was a legal pragmatist with the “Let’s dabble in policy implications” aspect of living constitutionalism. Ugh.

          • One cannot help but think that Congress impeaching an appellate judge for such flouting of judicial temperament would be a useful prophylactic step, although I am not optimistic of there being a majority of Republicans voting for it, much less a majority of the Senate.

            Nor do I imagine the MSM coverage would represent the facts of the complaint any more fairly than Fudge Posner applies legislative intent or precedent.

            Let us hope the day does not arrive when such as Judge Posner are tried in the court of Judge Lynch.

  14. *Snigger* Thank-you, Bill Whittle, for calling this to my attention.


    I don’t have a truck, but this makes me want one. One that I can not only fly my Fan Pole from but set up back-to-back 60″ monitors in the bed and play this commercial.

    I almost, almost want to go to lirul sites and post that link in them as a way of saying: “Kiss my alt-right neo-Nazi fascist stormtroopin’ cisnormal pole.”

  15. I generally like Popehat’s posts, so it’s odd and highly disappointing to see him get something so wrong by completely buying into leftist tropes about the Right. That article looks more like bien pensant tribal signaling than a circumspect analysis.

    I’ve never really had any reason to call his judgment into question until now.

    The modern use of the word “homophobia” is now just a cognitive shortcut for me. I mean, looking past the incomplete construction of the word itself (fear of the same what?), it’s now just used as a slur to Other its target. As if the homosexual “community” (whatever THAT is) is beyond criticism. A perfectly factual observation such as calling to light the positions of prominent activists like Harry Hay means that you’re somehow demonstrating a fear of homosexuals? When did “phobia” switch from “irrational fear” to “criticism”? Does this mean we can call modern feminists androphobes?

    There’s a reason the DSM has gone from homosexuality being a disorder to homophobia being a disorder. If you can label your enemies “clinically” crazy, it relieves you the burden of intellectual engagement.

    • Feather Blade

      looking past the incomplete construction of the word itself (fear of the same what?)

      So much this.

      Also the word “Homosexual”: mixing Latin and Greek roots? Come on, man…

    • TBH, i stopped reading Popehat about two months after “Clark” left and the blog became increasingly lefty.

  16. Reblogged this on Spin, strangeness, and charm and commented:
    Yes, make no mistake. This isn’t about justice for any actual, real-life people. This is about balkanizing into a welter of intersecting oppressor-oppressed distinctions so complex that only an anointed elite can dispense justice.
    Stripped of its mask, it is Nietzschean “Wille zur Macht” (will to power), pure and simple.

    Here is my choice:
    “You can choose from phantom fears/And kindness that can kill
    I will choose a path that’s clear/I will choose free will”

    • paladin3001

      Here is my choice:
      “You can choose from phantom fears/And kindness that can kill
      I will choose a path that’s clear/I will choose free will”

      Can never go wrong with Rush. 🙂

  17. John McCain has brain cancer.

    Teddy Kennedy died from brain cancer.

    Coincidence? Or is the Senate a toxic environment? ENACT TERM LIMITS NOW! Why take the chance?

    • Or lure a few select individuals in and lock the door.
      (Yes, I’m having a Day. I failed to save a file under the correct file-type and 90 minutes of work went down the toidy.)

  18. Sarahs gonna kill me

    We free men of America are
    Trying to carry our message afar
    these progressives are regressive
    hit them with a crowbar

    ugh, no more verses, it will get evil.

  19. Turbo Beholder (@TBeholder)

    > In other words, you have to be willing to believe things that just ain’t so and that simply won’t work in the real world.
    Well, that’s the whole point, isn’t it?
    http://www.azquotes.com/quote/1124379