In The Name Of The Underclass

I’m fairly sure it was sometime in per-history and lost to us that the first human (or proto-human) realized he could get power by riding on the backs of someone who had none.

It’s a neat trick, mind, and one that logically shouldn’t work, but does. Again, probably the first use was Ogg who pointed out under the leadership of his predecessor Grog, the women and children were starving to death because only the warriors go meat.  In the name of championing the women, he hit Grog over the head and the other warriors didn’t kill him, because, well, he had a point.  Look how many kids had starved last winter, and they weren’t even fat enough to be good eating.

One example of this is the French Revolution, where the ascendant middle class used the true plight of the poor (some of whom were starving) to destroy the monarchy and install a regime more favorable to them.

Not going to defend the ancien regime, but seriously, the rivers of blood in the revolution were because some lawyers and clerks felt themselves locked out of the upper classes by birth.  But they used the fury of the true dispossessed (and even for them things were going better, but helping us in the revolution meant yeah, some were starving.)

Because it’s hard to argue with starving children, or miserable old people, or the truly helpless.  Dave Freer tells me that the idea of fairness is in the human brain from the monkeys.  In the band there is an idea of “equal” or at least equitable distribution, and no one likes the monkey who boggarts the bananas.  (Yeah, I know,not bananas.  Never mind.)  So it’s easy to turn that sense of fairness against humans.

In the twentieth century, this is what the Communists and Fascists both did.  It always started with “but look at the people starving” before proposing a solution in which you killed more people than would have starved.

You’ll say this is used on both sides in the US, and you won’t be exactly wrong.  Sure, Trump used the “jobs being sent elsewhere” to get to power, but you know what, his solution is not “let’s give the middle classes of these states money.”  That’s the other side’s solution because they presume a lot of people are too stupid to take part in our present economy.  Trump assumes they can work if we halt globalization.  He’s half right.  The shipping of work abroad WITH INTENT AND MALICE will hurt those countries in which the lifestyle is more expensive/better.  Because while the great equalization is taking place, it will hurt us, materially.  Also, given the regimes in those other countries, I’m not sure it will ever bring them up to our level.  It might just be a matter of having serfs in third world countries forever do the work, so that people in the US can be given welfare checks and kept in doped-out submission.  Globalization is one of those ideas that only makes sense if you presume the rest of the world are Americans by culture, an idea that even RAH forsook once he had a world tour.  So, much as it hurts my open borders Libertarian self from 16 years ago to say it, he might not be wrong on that.  What he is is incomplete.  We need to reduce regulations as much as possible, and make it easier to start businesses.  What businesses could these people start, you say?  I don’t know, and neither do you, but I bet you they would if it weren’t so maddeningly difficult to start a business, particularly a food or service related business.  I have a friend who just started a food business and who is being pecked to death by ducks.  His product is good, people love it, but the regulations and pointless hoop-jumping take more time than the actual business.

I know, someone is going to tell me without the FDA we’d all be served tainted food.  There’s a stupid leftist meme running around about Paul Ryan, Rand Paul and Ayn Rand going into a bar and being served tainted alcohol, because there’s no FDA and they all die.

This is a part of the “and before government stuck its head in, we all died” version of history the left loves.  It isn’t true, it was never true.  People who want customers don’t poison them, and in the rare cases of real harm, there was still the remedy of the courts.  Shakespeare’s son in law had to run off to the States when he served tainted wine in his tavern, and if there was an FDA in Elizabethan England, they’ve kept it remarkably hidden.

This is the same school of thought that thinks that if murder were legal for a day, no one would be left alive.  Or who does old west or medieval shows where everyone kills everyone for profit, or whatever.  I don’t understand how these people’s heads work, unless they themselves are stupid enough to do all these things if there weren’t a piece of paper holding them back.

Thus endeth digression.

The point is, when the big chief Ogg takes over after deposing the iniquitous regime of Grog, mostly what happens is that the vast majority of meat changes hands from Grog’s cronies to Ogg’s cronies.  The women and children continue to starve.

Actually in the case of communism they starve harder and faster, because the economic theories of communism are so startlingly bad that there is less meat to go around.

In the case of socialism, well…. it depends on how close to Communism it is.  Venezuela’s is very very close to communism.

In Europe, as they’re trying to do it, they just think that the vast majority of people are too stupid for the elites to make ANY use of, and so it consists of having a vast underclass who are treated like children, and whose only escape is drugs.  And then you can use that vast underclass to say “what would they do if we stopped giving them their monthly ration of chocolate.  You must see they’re helpless.”

It’s a neat trick.  We know for a fact, because we have seen it in action, that the best way of getting rid of the vast underclass is not to pay them to remain an underclass, but to remove the obstacles to their developing their own business and bourgeois virtues that allow them to become productive members of society.  But that of course would not suit those who want to use them for power.

Oh, I think I just encapsulated most of the history of Africa in the last hundred years too.

And this is without counting the true crazies who then view the underclass problems as GENETIC and propose solutions indistinguishable from Hitler.

This movie has been on repeat loop since pre-history.  It’s time to shed the habits of thought that think we’re very smart, but others are poor things that we need to take care of (if we just put Ogg in power.)

Remove the trammels that keep people down, and people will rise.  Yes, even the “underclass.”  Humans are humans and we’re all clever monkeys.  And IQ measure, btw, not only is notoriously difficult to pin down, but take it from someone who has known a VAST number of true geniuses, it is not a measure of how useful or even functional you are in society.  Most geniuses I know have trouble staying out of the homeless shelter.  The difference between the “elites” and the underclass is opportunity, training and culture.  (The culture being the good old virtues of self-control and deferring gratification, i.e. planning, and a certain go-gettism I’d call ambition, only not in the sense of more money or whatever, but of “I could do this.”)

I was struck recently, while discussing citizen of the Galaxy with friends by their saying “Torby would have done well in any circumstances.”  Yep, he would.  It’s the hardware in the head, not where you start.  And not how much money you’re handed.  Or even, honestly, how smart you are.

Let’s start giving people the right hardware and removing obstacles to their inventiveness and industry.

You get what you buy more of.  We’ve bought sloth and passivity long enough.  Let’s start buying industry, thrift and invention.

Yes, I know you’ll say “won’t think of the children?”

I am.  I don’t want them to grow up in a world where they’re so bored and feel so useless, the only thing they can do is shoot up drugs.

Say no to the oldest ploy in the world.  Be a true champion of the underclass.  Demand they pull themselves up by their bootstraps.


300 thoughts on “In The Name Of The Underclass

  1. It always started with “but look at the people starving” before proposing a solution in which you killed more people than would have starved.

    But their hearts were in the right place and intentions are what matters? No. No. And NO. Intentions are nice, like a smear of jam on your bread, but if doesn’t produce bread with nutritional substance you’ll starve.

        1. The flipside is that the results CAN SOMETIMES justify the means. A large percentage of people, asked about Hiroshima and Nagasaki, will knee-jerk react that nothing justifies them. And a lot of Hagiography has been dedicated to dismissing any justifications; the Japanese were putting out peace feelers! (They were approaching the USSR, and thinking along ‘no foreign feet on the Homeland’ lines, which wasn’t much of a position), the Japanese couldn’t have withstood an invasion (yup, they’d have lost. Bloodily.), we could have blockaded them into surrender! (Oh, please).

          Cold equation? The two bombs killed slightly under a quarter of a million people. Many estimates say that the Nanking Massacre killed more people. Allied estimates were than an invasion of the mainland would result in a million ALLIED casualties. And forces that take that kind of casualties tend to commit atrocities in retaliation.

          226,000 dead? That was the vegetarian option.

          1. Every single Purple Heart issued between WWII and today has come out of the stock ordered in anticipation of the invasion of the Japanese Home Islands.

          2. I’ve heard the claim that deaths due to war make an ever-increasing (overall) line… up to and including most of 1945. And then it fell… and didn’t resume climbing. Pax Atomica?

            1. We’ve gotten much better at trauma care over the last century. But, since at least Vietnam, we’ve also become rather risk averse politically. When soldiers get killed nowadays the media goes berserk over why we’re even there.

              1. It’s not just “us”.. but yes, overall care has improved. And perhaps many places have become risk averse (and also have some advanced targeting that makes taking $THING not mean taking out $EVERYTHING around it.

              2. That’s one of the items when you see the gun suicide rates trotted out as to how horrible red places are to live. Get shot in Chicago and you’re in ER within 30 min. Do it in Wyoming and hopefully the bird has landed by then.

              3. My list: Body armor; individual level advanced first aid training plus universal issue of one-hand-applicable tourniquets; wide availability of rapid transport to advanced care locations, and advanced trauma care.

                Without the first you get more core injuries which just kill you; without the second you wait around for someone with skills to come get your bleeding stopped; without the third you die rattling along in the ambulance after your golden hour expires; and without the fourth you die anyway due to the severity of your wounds.

              4. When soldiers get killed nowadays the media goes berserk over why we’re even there.

                Only when Republicans are in office. See: Benghazi — “what difference, at this point in time, does it make?” Note, also, casualty reports during the Bosnian Intervention, aka: We can”t impeach the president, don’t you know there’s a war on?

          3. “The ends justify the means” ~= “You do what you have to.”

            The former is usually attempted when the ends themselves are also bad but one wants to pretend otherwise. The latter is more common when the end actually is good (or at least better than alternatives) and you have to do some sucky stuff to get there.

            1. I think I said it here before, that I wound up explaining to someone that Truman had a bunch of choices, all lousy. He picked what he figured was the least lousy.

            2. If the ends don’t justify the means, what would? Amputating a limb is an extreme act, but if it is gangrenous it seems justified.

              Now, if we’re talking about most government programs, such as Head Start, the ends certainly do not justify the means, but that is because no serious benefits (ends) accrue.

              When a program persists long term in spite of no measurable benefits you can generally be confident that the ends proclaimed are not the ends actual.

              1. When a program persists long term in spite of no measurable benefits you can generally be confident that …
                it’s a government program.

              2. It’s tricks with words.

                The ends can’t make unjust means just, but they can excuse them.

                And people wonder why I get so het up on words. First take away anyone’s ability to talk sense and what follows?

                1. Saw a sign on a person’s yard “I believe in science. No human being is illegal.” There will be column for pjmedia. The amount of rocks in the head that wrote that could rebuild Rome.

                  1. Grumble. Illegal people?* Really? Rolls eyes.

                    It is not that people themselves are illegal. Their presence in this country was achieved by breaking the law and therefore they are aliens who lack the legal status to be here.

                    *(Imagination runs to picture of an underground unlicensed manufacture of people. Forbid we should ever get there, like China under its one child policy.)

                    1. I wonder whether the sign’s erectors take a comparable view about people entering their homes and relieving them of excess property in the dead of night?

                      For that matter, I eagerly await Harvey Werinstein’s defense attorney arguing “Rape is such a judgmental, incendiary word! Surely you cannot deny that the accused has as much right to put his tongue in your mouth as you have for your tongue to be there?”

                    1. There might be legal issues with that, depending on whether PJM has first publication or whatever. Not my field of expertise, but yes, posting first graph seems a permissible way of promoting.

            3. “The former is usually attempted when the ends themselves are also bad but one wants to pretend otherwise. The latter is more common when the end actually is good (or at least better than alternatives) and you have to do some sucky stuff to get there.”

              I trust that you realize that you’ve just perfectly expressed the Left’s rallying cry: It’s Not Fascism When We Do It!

              They consider their ends to be as good or better —- and if eggs are required for omelets, that’s “some sucky stuff to get there.” All you can do is work towards the best ends you can — but don’t expect the opposition to agree, and ultimately they will fight, whether you’re prepared to or not.

              1. They consider

                The very example of pretending that the enslaving, slaughtering, and condemning to crushing poverty forever the majority of the world’s population is a “good” thing. They are exactly the “ends justify the means” side of that approximation.

          4. “If nuking Hiroshima and Nagasaki saves even *one* Allied soldier’s life…”

            Well, yes. The responsibility for the Allied governments was to their own people. If the Japanese Empire didn’t want to see the light of ten thousand suns, they shouldn’t have hit Pearl and Manila.

            Reminds me on old documentary where they were asking a former Korean “comfort woman” about her opinion on the subject. She said, “Why? Why only TWO?!”

            1. If the Japanese Empire didn’t want to see the light of ten thousand suns, they shouldn’t have hit Pearl and Manila.

              Or at least surrendered after Germany did. I mean, the US had been pushing Japan back steadily even when we were distracted by fighting in Europe, officially our #1 priority. When Germany surrendered, the Japanese were fighting on Okinawa, having been pushed back from darn near Australia. The Imperial Japanese Navy was gone. No reasonable person could fail to see how this was going to end, the only question was how many people were going to die. The Japanese government chose “as many as possible” and so the guilt rests on them.

              1. By then they knew they had lost. The Japanese chose “as many as possible” on the assumption that the Allies wouldn’t have the stomach for it, and grant them more favorable terms of surrender. And they were half right: The Allies didn’t have the stomach for those levels of casualties on both sides. Where they miscalculated was in the response. They thought, when faced with a rattlesnake that was tougher than anticipated, the Americans would back away. But the typical American response is to grab a shotgun and be done with it.

                  1. On the afternoon of 9/11/2001, I heard sentiment on the street that I’d only read about in accounts of the Indian Wars.

                    It’s worth noting that this also gets more entrenched as bloody wars drag on where we feel the stakes are high. The attitudes toward the end of such a war are markedly different than at the start. Even WWII and the jump-start of Pearl Harbor saw a hardening of attitude.

                1. In fact, the rational Japanese leaders knew they’d lost in summer 1944, after the American forces took the Marianas and crushed both the Imperial Army on the islands and the Imperial Navy on the high seas. That naval battle isn’t known as the “Marianas Turkey Shoot” for nothing. The Imperial Navy was ended as a significant factor after the Battle of Leyte Gulf, but it was ended as an effective fighting force after the Turkey Shoot.

                  Meanwhile, anybody who could read a balance sheet knew that the Japanese home islands were being strangled by the US submarine blockade. Once they had an effective torpedo, the submarines shot the guts out of the Japanese merchant marine. Starvation was not just a possibility but a reality in Japan by fall 1944. And yet, they didn’t surrender.

                  Something else to consider too: the mood of the American people. After Pearl Harbor and other atrocities committed by the Japanese army, the American public wanted Japan crushed. A starvation “not with a bang but a whimper” end to the war wouldn’t have satisfied them.

                  1. There’s also the lesson from Germany after 1918, and how overwhelming an enemy’s armies outside its borders without bringing the defeat home might just encourage them to try again a couple of decades later.

                    (I’ve had this pet theory of mine objected to on the grounds that contemporary discussions don’t mention the idea. I wonder whether is was not so glaringly obvious to not need discussion.)

                    1. Thank you. Shame I didn’t have this group as a reference source last time I had this discussion.

                      Shame, too, that I don’t remember the name of the history student I was discussing this with, and who objected to my speculation; there’s nothing like calling up a chance acquaintance from a decade ago to say, “I can back my theory up now.”

          5. Adm. Dan Gallery (captured the U-505) wrote a number of books after the war, and in one of them (title escapes me) said we could have starved the Japanese into submission. Seems to me the old, the women, and the children would have gone first as the food would have gone to the military. I think this would have caused more moral reprehension than the bombs have. YMMV.

            1. I can’t lay hands on the link ATM– I believe I found it via “The American Catholic”– but the flat out argument for not using the bomb included exactly that argument, at the time they were debating using the bombs at all.

              1. As far as I can tell there never was any debate. Roosevelt gave Groves his carte blanche to get Churchill out of his hair, then had almost nothing else to do with the bomb. Groves had no doubt the bombs would be used; that’s why he was building them. Roosevelt died, Truman took over, and Groves essentially popped up out of nowhere, said, “Hey, we have this new super-weapon to end the war without having to stage Olympic, and we’ve already set up the forward bases and trained the aircrew, and have all the weather monitoring stations online, when would be the most convenient time for us to drop the hammer?”

                While Truman presents himself as grave and interested in his account, I’m pretty sure there was some ‘Yee HAW!” involved…

            2. Yes, we could probably have blockaded the Home Islands into submission. Not only did we control the seas around Japan, but our submarines had sunk most of the Japanese merchant fleet. So even if our fleet had packed up and gone home, the Japanese still would have had trouble transporting supplies across the water.

              But doing so would likely have caused starvation on such a massive scale that the deaths from Hiroshima and Nagasaki would have been drops in the bucket. To put it plainly, every realistic solution that didn’t involve the atomic bombs risked making Halsey’s prophecy (“When this war is over, the Japanese language will only be spoken in Hell!”) come true.

              Plus, the war was still very hot in China. Waiting for a blockade to work against the Home Islands wouldn’t have done anything about the killing still going on in China.

              1. There was also the Soviet problem; the USSR was finally beginning to engage Japan, and one thing we didn’t want was to split the victory with a latecomer, or have to deal with a Soviet army occupying the territory we’d bled so much for.

            3. Look into ‘Operation Starvation’. Curtis Lemay was using air dropped mines to severely disrupt shipping in Japan’s major harbors. Post-war studies from both countries underscored the effectiveness of this approach.

          6. Don’t forget a) how many Japanese we were killing via conventional means b) How many non-Japanese Asians the Japs were killing. IIRC, when I ran some numbers, I concluded that dropping was probably a cost savings in Japanese life, and well worth it if it stopped the Japanese killing non-Japanese Asians a month early. Of course, I would’ve been willing to exterminate the whole Japanese population if it had come down to it, purely based on America’s interests, and making sure that we wouldn’t be fighting them again next generation.

            1. Recall that at the time of the surrender, the Japanese Army on the mainland was still fully in control without any real military opposition, and Stalin had only just started his promised attack from Siberia. Those huge Japanese Army formations could and would have fought on absent the orders from the Emperor to surrender. And given their history, if facing military defeat they would have simply killed everyone in those Japanese-controlled areas.

          7. It’s more like… the ends must justify the means, and it’s impossible to justify an inherent evil.
            Deliberately killing innocents is evil.

            Most of the anti-bomb arguments I’ve seen depend on arguing that the bombs deliberately targeted innocents; they do not account for either the “we are going to bomb, get out” fliers, the fact that the harm to innocents was an explicit aspect of the push for closing off all imports, or that normal bombs behave with the same blindness towards civilian status.

          8. “we could have blockaded them into surrender!”

            We could have….. at the cost of 3-5 years more time and God only knows how many more dead Japanese,

          9. And here I am going to put on my ranting hat….

            When people argue (or depressingly often merely virtue signal) against the bombs they take the line that the targeting of cities was reprehensible, [handwave], therefore the bombs were bad.

            What they neglect to mention or understand is that Japanese cities were being firebombed on a regular basis; as I understand it killing more people than The Bombs did. The targeting of civilian populations is an entirely separate matter from the use of nuclear weapons, and anyone who conflates the two — especially in the process of moral grandstanding — has disqualified themselves from being worthy of being listened to.

            As far as the actual issues…

            The nature of the conflict means that the targeting of civilians was not as much of an open and shut case as we would like it to be, though it was at best a horrible necessity. But nuclear energy is not black magic, no matter how much the fainting couch brigade claims it is.

        2. Well, the ends do justify the means.

          Of course, those ends must encompass the means and the consequences from using those means…

      1. Generally when people say that the ends don’t justify the means, they’re not properly specifying the ends. Usually by omitting something like “with a minimum of innocent casualties.”

        1. Yes. First, define the problem. Do it wrong, and you can screw everything else up.

    1. Not only that, but if you look at what Lenin and friends were actually saying and doing, it’s very clear that their intentions NEVER were good. It always was their intent to kill off anyone who disagreed with them even slightly.
      “In a country where the sole employer is the State, opposition means death by slow starvation: The old principle: who does not work shall not eat, has been replaced by a new one: who does not obey shall not eat.” — Leon Trotsky, 1937 (quoted by Henry Hazlitt in “The wisdom of Henry Hazlitt”)

      1. Stalin gets all the blame for being a murderous bastidge, but Lenin and the beloved Trotsky were also more than happy to kill people.

  2. There is generally a profit to be made by pretending altruism.

    “I weep for you,” the Walrus said:
    “I deeply sympathize.”
    With sobs and tears he sorted out
    Those of the largest size,
    Holding his pocket-handkerchief
    Before his streaming eyes.

  3. I’d always thought that the economist Hernando de Soto Polar had it right, when he postulated that the reason that South American countries are so poor is not because of lack of energy and enterprise on the part of their citizens – but that land titles are so complicated that they cannot really claim to have possession of the property they live on. So – no credit available, relatively repressive laws, the government apt to confiscate what can be built up.

    1. I think Haiti has been cited as to having generationally-long regulatory messes.

      Last night, someone posted an interview with Camille Paglia about Trump, and one of his recent speeches was cited in full. The speech was entirely about eliminating the redundancy from federal regulations so that the approval process for buildings and other infrastructure doesn’t take a decade and go through more than twenty different departments. Good luck to him; if that can be done, it would be a huge boon to repairing, upgrading, and replacing all of those structurally deficient bridges, for instance.

      1. These charts beside me are actually a simplified version of our highway permitting process. It includes 16 different approvals involving 10 different federal agencies being governed by 26 different statutes. As one example—and this happened just 30 minutes ago—I was sitting with a great group of people responsible for their state’s economic development and roadways. All of you are in the room now. And one gentleman from Maryland was talking about an 18-mile road. And he brought with him some of the approvals that they’ve gotten and paid for. They spent $29 million for an environmental report, weighing 70 pounds and costing $24,000 per page…

        Link to the article (which has a link to the speech in full.)

      2. For a while now I’ve been arguing for a BRAC (Base Realignment And Closure, the committee that looked at shutting down and consolidating military bases at the end of the Cold War) type committee to look at federal programs, identify redundant and outdated departments (we don’t make military uniforms out of mohair anymore, there’s no reason to subsidize its production) and give a list of consolidations and eliminations to Congress for an up-or-down vote.

        1. It would be cheaper and less destructive to retire a large percentage of the bureaucrats at full pay, or put filters on their computers that block them from everything but internet smut and cat videos.

          1. Part of the problem is that too many bureaucrats see their personal power as part of the benefits package. They aren’t going to react too well to that being taken away from them.

      3. And yesterday, Sen. Jeff Flake proposed legislation to make something illegal that is already illegal… probably because no one in his staff could be bothered to look and see that there is an exact federal rule to do just what he wants done (and that would have kicked in IF the Air Force and others had done what the rules require them to do.) There’s at least a quarter of the problem – regulatory escalation from ignorance.

        1. I expect it would have been written like the bumpstock bill. Let’s cast as wide a net as possible and get anyone who’s seen a counselor, even for grief.

          1. Oh, it was a far wider net than that. Ever been prescribed Chantix to quit smoking, or any other “psychotropic” for non-mental reasons? You’re on the list.

            And so is anyone else who has a formal relationship with you: family, SO, etc., because you might have access to their guns. and vice versa.

      4. Don’t you understand how many bureaucratic layabouts would have their cushy jobs eliminated children would starve/go uneducated/be denied healthy environments (pick at least one) if those regulations were eliminated?

        1. way back, early days twitter, one lady several of us knew from somewhere got mad at us for wanting large cuts in Fed employees because her hubby was one.
          How could we be so course and unfeeling as to whether her hubby kept his job?
          I asked her if his job was so hard that only he could do it and only the Feds could employ him to do it, or was it something he could maybe make more money at doing it in the private sector, or was it a waste of taxpayer money and best not even existing?
          She answered me and the others by deleting her account and disappearing from any blogs and forums any of frequented. One person knew her in real life and she said they talked less and the lady, who otherwise claimed to be a conservative, was angry anyone would want to eliminate HER hubby’s job, even if it was a useless make-work.

          1. I’m kind of in the middle on that one, because while yeah, my husband is a fed employee, and I use to be– all jobs involved are things that need doing, by the Feds. Arguments about it tend to devolve into “anything I don’t really like shouldn’t be done” claims by the against folks. :/

            The Feds screw around a lot, and there IS a lot of stuff that shouldn’t be done, but there’s also a lot of stuff that needs to be done but doesn’t have immediate results. Kind of like cleaning the house.

            1. The discussion was simply “The Fed is too big, and needs to be reduced.” She immediately went all personally offended. If he was (as mentioned further up) part of the Mohair program, then get him into the private sector and paying taxes now, instead of the opposite. If he is with the Secret Service investigating Counterfeiters abroad, then yeah, we likely would not only want to keep him, but hey, we freed up some more money to make his job easier to do!

                1. Yeah, I can only get fanatical about Irish Road racing or the Isle Of Man TT.
                  I think maybe his job was Assistant Third Undersecretary of the Federal Buggy Whip Factory Assembly Line Inspectorate.
                  But my explanation was more to point out the leftoids all proclaim much the same as she did whenever someone points out anything. There is no “common ground” or “compromise”, there is only “You will agree with us!” or they claim you want to starve/shoot/kill/eliminate/make homeless/kick_to_the_curb/whatever_is_the_worst_case_we_can_think_of . . .
                  but you know that well.

                    1. …I do not get it, but I am totally with the lady cackling while guys go WHIsH!!!! next to her– and I am boggled at the technology involved in getting a clear shot of a guy going 180 on a rough road, so the stuff next to him blurs instead of him.

                    2. I think that is an SLR he uses for some of his footage, but most is either from TV coverage, or team owned onboard gopro/ion/etc, but it is amazing how often even some clear action or slo-mo is a freaking iPhone or Android.
                      Today’s phones are better than 90’s tv cameras.

                    3. We went to the local Fox/CBS station’s Halloween party– all of the video was saw shot was on cellphone, and it was beautiful.

                    4. Modern wonders.
                      Kids these days don’t know the joy of waiting a week or two for the developer to return your 8mm film, and fighting failing projectors.
                      Get off my lawn!
                      Wait, what happened there?

                    5. I have a tiny little wind-up super-8 camera, probably last used in the early 1970’s at the very latest. And some film… that was transferred to DVD.

                      Ah yes, those joys…
                      Waiting for all the tubes to warm up.
                      Setting the needle in the groove.
                      Threading the film.
                      Threading the tape.
                      Re-spooling what went to the floor instead of the take-up reel.
                      Setting the choke.
                      Arranging schedule to be home in time for $TV_SHOW.

                      I want to add “getting the pilot lit” to that, but the water heater still uses such.

                    6. Arranging schedule to be home in time for $TV_SHOW.

                      Our biggest explosion with the kids has been trying to get them to understand that no, we can’t replay the show we just watched, and no, you can’t skip ahead.

          2. There’s a reason I try to keep expanding my skill stack. I never want to be so unable to get work on the open market that I’m afraid to do right by all the folks who had a gun put to their head by government that pays my salary.

    2. I saw a study which compared the economy in differing counties in Wisconsin (I think). Earlier settlers marked property by the old tree, stream, etc. Later counties had a surveyor divy up the land by longitude/latitude. Add 200 years and the title is harder to sort out for the first group causing measurable difference in economic growth.

    3. Well it could certainly be a contributing factor but is by no means the only explanation. Else how would Argentina have been the 10th wealthiest (per capita) country in 1913?

      1. Part of Argentina’s success was a wave of Italian and other European immigrants who worked very, very hard doing things other people didn’t want to do. That helped kick the economy into higher gear for a while before culture, WWI, and other things started to kick back. (Trivia: the US was having a tariff war with Imperial Germany over their beef imports, so the Germans joined the British in buying a lot more Argentinian beef in the early 1900s.)

      2. It’s the old boomtown scenario. A country’s economy is dependent on one single resource, and the temporary demand for it props up the local economy, while masking actual flaws.
        Once the demand drops or disappears, the economy crashes hard.
        See also Venezuela.

        1. People are starting to complain about how many taxes the states that legalized marijuana are putting on the marijuana that people sell.

          Well, what else did they expect? There’s been a big rise in sales of the product, and one of the selling points that legalizers used was “Look at all the money that will be brought in from tax receipts!”

          1. Back in the 90s:
            legalize it, and tax it to pay for the problems.
            Oh my gosh, how dare you tax it, that makes it so expensive it can’t compete with smuggled pot from Mexico!

            1. they somehow think if they legalize it at a Federal level that all these small growers will still be able to compete when Phi.lip Morris starts making marijuana cigs…

    4. While it is prone to abuse, the various “hey I’ve been doing this X years, I have a legal right” laws do destroy that abuse.

  4. Isn’t it interesting that those us that think minorities (no matter the sex, race, or religion) are all equally capable of providing for themselves and their families if given a chance. Yet we’re the ones that are considered racist and sexist?

      1. I really wish they’d come up with a new one. This one is old and stale.

        Really, being insulting is fine, but try to at least be inventive about it if you feel the need to call people names.

        1. Why should they? It works by putting their opponents on the defensive and manipulating feelings. “It’s all for the children.Don’t you want to help the children.” And people cave because they don’t want to be portrayed as the villain.

          1. Because whenever someone says “it’s for the children” I know immediately that they are blatantly attempting to manipulate my emotions.

            Being portrayed as a villain has pretty much sailed into the sunset since to the Left my existence as a straight white male makes me a villain no matter what I do or don’t do just because I exist.

            1. It’s gotten so bad that when someone describes another person’s justification as being “For the children,” you should double-check if that is actually anything they’ve said.

              1. You’re safe if you just add “the harm to” between the original “for” and “the children.”
                No, home schooling didn’t make me cynical: I came that way.
                Okay, actually, maybe being home schooled as a kid made me cynical. I was cynical before I started home schooling my own.

                1. I know homeschooling mine has made me kinda cynical….

                  On one hand, my kids have learned that they can manipulate the teacher.

                  On the other, their teacher has authority and motivation to not allow them to profit from that…..

      1. I don’t think it’s just racism they project. I think many of them wish to be much more violent and they project that on others as well.

        I’ve owned and shot firearms for over 40 years and as of yet I haven’t shot anyone. (Not counting laser tag and paintballs). Yet the Left seems to act as if own a gun acts as some sort of demonic possession that will eventually cause you go to mad and start indulging in murder sprees.

  5. I can’t remember which news outlet had it – more likely the WSJ, but yesterday I noticed an article on recent events in Saudi Arabia which included a paragraph about young Saudi men are actually starting to be entreprenuerial. Some of them are starting, oh, food truck type businesses, for instance. Because the regulations have changed and they can. People want to do and accomplish, Just stop pretending you know better than we do, and get out of the way.

    1. When I was there in 1980-81 Saudi’s were MANAGERS, they would hire 3rd world people to do the job and then manage them. It was a standing joke.

      Much must have changed.

      1. It was similar in the 90’s. Menial work was performed by people from other countries. There seemed to be a lot of Filipinos running around.

        1. The last “slavery” case I recall hearing of here in the US was a Saudi and his wife who took all identification etc from their Filipino or Indonesian(forget exactly which) “maid” and forced her to stay in their house and work. One of them forgot to lock a door and she went to a neighbor and called the police.

        2. Oh, you have no idea. Lady I knew in 1998 was Tech Sgt deployed to Kuwait by the USAF and they were still clearing up minefields around the airbase after Gulf War 1, The US used all sorts of tech and machinery; the Kuwaiti method involved a line of Bangladeshis about 1 k long equipped with those trash pickup poles with a nail on the end being marched thru the desert probing for mines. So much cheaper…..

    2. Yes, WSJ. Not only that, but one of those food trucks was run by a mother/daughter team. The article correctly points out that a year ago, perhaps less, that would have gotten them both arrested.

      1. And thus Saudi women will drag the country (kicking and screaming, perhaps) into the 20th century. Or maybe the 19th, or 18th… yeah, I know, I know.. but at least things are moving some.

            1. No, no, it’s OK. Sean was referring to how well you do as a minotaur, not your moral standing vis a vis good and evil. No worries.

              1. Ah, thank you for the explanation. Now, I do tend to think of myself as generally moral and good (who doesn’t think that of themselves?). Generally, not universally. That claim is for the divine, the insane, and the fraudulent. Don’t bet on divine.

                Or, paraphrasing, I suppose it could be:
                Good, Evil – I’m the one with the horns.

                1. Now, I do tend to think of myself as generally moral and good (who doesn’t think that of themselves?).
                  *raises hand*
                  Generally a rather nasty, petty sort of person who has to basically constantly keep checking against morality to make sure she’s not doing something horrific.

                  But for a general idea, yeah, you’re right.

            2. What the lady in red said. If you’re good *at* it, that doesn’t behoove you to actually *be* good, according to current standards. In point of fact, I have it on good authority that the BBESP is actually quite good at her job. Do mind the ‘E,’ we just had it polished last Tuesday.

                1. Beautiful But Evil Space Princess. I believe it was John C. Wright that coined the term, sometime around the Hugo silliness that was going around.

                  The Evil League of Evil has A Brain in a Jar (Wright), a Supreme Dark Lord (Vox Day), and International Lord of Hate (Larry Correia) in addition to the BBESP. They enact such horrible terrors as stories well told (without the heavy handed taint of message fiction), not caring about an author’s dangly bits or paint chips matching their dermal pigmentation.

                  I believe Sarah is also half of the world’s most horrible person, or so we are informed. And a white Mormon male (with a great rack). If these things are not self evident to you, well, perhaps you’ll fit right in. *chuckle*

                  1. stories well told (without the heavy handed taint of message fiction),

                    How can a story be well told if it hasn’t got any MessFic? That’s like calling a hamburger tasty when there’s no sawdust in the patty!

                    not caring about an author’s dangly bits or paint chips matching their dermal pigmentation.

                    Without such knowledge how can we know whether the author is appropriate to tell the tale. You are surely not advocating for inappropriate tale-telling?

                    1. No, certainly not. I’m advocating for wildly appropriative tale-telling, filing the serial numbers off with reckless abandon, and utterly lavish attention paid to plot, character, and action! Given a powerful enough microscope, no author is appropriate for any work of fiction save a personal diary. *grin*

                      Of course, given the current- how many is it now? number of genders for the two sexes, even dangly bits is dangerous territory for the modern progressive. Wokeness has evolved since the days when persons of dickitude couldn’t write feminine characters. There are ever so many more landmines out there when you have to consider all that.

                      Best to stick to that old black magic, that subversive, dangerous substance, the old-school science fiction story. Or fantasy, if that floats your dirigible. The books under the counter, the ones sold after hours, and traded on those less-than-reputable websites, like Amazon. It’s safer with the dangerous books, y’see. There, at least, you know where you stand. *chucklE*

  6. The first thing we need to do is start telling the Socialists “You had a century to make you ideas work. You failed. If you want to keep trying on your own, go ahead, but we’re going to do something else.”

    1. They also need to understand that due to the high body counts that seem to go with implementing socialism that there is no way in hell we’re going to disarm. Stop trying.

      1. I think we need an ad campaign to get that message to the masses. So many of the younger generations are being indoctrinated into supporting socialism. Not sure how to go about it, though, or even how effective it would actually be. But the message needs to get out to them somehow.

        1. There are some good sources even on YouTube. Crowder, Bill Whittle, Prager U.

          I’ve been hearing that the upcoming generations are trending more Conservative. It’s now the ‘rebel’ option. I’m not sure how you can listen to the hysterics and crap coming out of the Left and find it at all persuasive.

          1. I’m not sure how you can listen to the hysterics and crap coming out of the Left and find it at all persuasive.

            It’s cathartic, it gives you the same jolt of pleasure any emotional release does. It makes you feel powerful and important. You’re one of the enlightened, not one of those dirty knuckle-draggers clinging to outdated ideas. And, most importantly, it absolves you of your sins. Who cares if you raped a few women? You have the proper stance on abortion, so good women must support and defend you.

            1. I’m going to stick to lifting heavy things 🙂 Also going to stick to my ‘outdated’ ideas about liberty, freedom, and personal responsibility.

              I’m having a very good day so I’m not going to think about the Leftist culture or rape and sexual abuse.

      2. The purpose of gun control laws has nothing to do with disarmament nor even controlling weapons ownership. Its goal is to provide a distraction from the real problems (e.g., a government bureaucracy incompetent even to maintain a simple registry) and to provide a predicate for the eventual elimination of the inconvenient.

        1. All those required posters at workplaces? Perhaps we really do need one more. Not everywhere, mind. No private business should need this, but probably all government program/department offices do:

          List of the Inconvenient
          1. Bureaucrats
          2. Their Enablers

    2. Funny, I’ve had Socialists tell me the same thing about Capitalism – except for the “try it on your own” part, they view Capitalism as too EVIL to allow that.

      1. A couple of years back, History Channel had their “Men Who Built America” miniseries about people like Rockefeller, Carnegie, J.P. Morgan, etc. The last episode dealt with the rise of trust-busting and economic regulation. It closed with a monologue talking about all the great things these men had done and how for some reason we never saw their likes again. I doubt many people watching picked up on the fact that they answered the question before they asked it.

  7. Self proclaimed Communists, and the Socialists next to them that think we need to have similar outcomes for everyone, should be executed on site. They are a clear and present danger to the rest of us. Those they don’t outright murder they attempt to keep from prosperity simply because someone, somewhere, might not have as much as us, even if they can’t use it and don’t want it.

    When their talking points on inequality and privilege include such things as two parents raising their kid(s) together, math/science/grammar are racist, etc. I tend to tune out anything else they have to say. If we were as racist and violent as they tell us we are, they’d all be dead. I’m starting to think maybe we should be living up to their expectations just so the Days of Derpitude can be over with and we can get on with improving our lot in life.

    1. because someone, somewhere, might not have as much as us
      One of the weapons of the progressives is to always make the perfect the enemy of the good. So, all imperfections in great men (assuming their imperfections were those disapproved by the current class of nitwits thought leaders) are reason to destroy the great men and their legacies. (And, of course, replace them with their own.)
      Hence, the statue folderol, for one.

    2. A great many of the inequities associated with Race In America are better correlated to the presence/absence of two-parent families but for some odd reason those complaining never want to notice that.

      It isn’t, for example, that schools disproportionately discipline “Students of Color” as it is that said students are more likely to come from households where the father’s role is essentially unfilled.

      1. And of course, pointing out that different rates of incarceration between the races might have something to do with the different rates of criminality between the races is just pure racism. Because cause and effect is obviously a tool of white supremacy.

      2. Very much so. The importance of both parents, and those worthies being good role models, is *highly* underrated. They call ’em the “formative” years for a reason, and it’s not because of all the government form’s ya gotta fill out when they’re still tiny tots.

      3. It’s the “raised by wolves” phenomenon. After the third generation, you’ve got feral humans. But note that while a hugely challenging problem, not solvable by “more freedom,” in the short term but by rebuilding cultural institutions, it has been done in the past. So it ought to be doable.

        But right now the only folks willing to call a spade a spade when it comes to the “raised by wolves” black Americans are a handful of astonishingly brave blacks and the Alt-Right. Who get the premises wrong, and so are of little use in getting to the solution. It’s fairly sick-making.

        Meanwhile the left are beavering away at ending school choice, the integrity of the armed forces, conservative religious institutions, and turning micro-entrepreneurship into crime and convincing every new generation of blacks with a hint of leadership ability to Blame Whitey and play the grievance game.

  8. Give a man a fish you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish you feed him for a lifetime.
    A truism from the dim past that shines eternal.

    1. Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Implement a Social Justice Plan for giving him a fish every day henceforward and you have a nice little bureaucratic empire from which to run for office.

    2. Kill a man for his fish and you’ll eat for a day, take a man’s fish and tell him he’s luck to be alive and you’ll have a steady supply of fish to eat.

        1. Except unless he’s going solo, which is unlikely since he’s able to boss around you in a very physical job like fishing which often has helpers, that just means his friends kill you.

      1. Kill a man for his fish, and you’ll eat for a day. Kill an SJW and barbecue him/her, spit-roasted over a bed of coals, and you will have one less annoyance to deal with tomorrow.

        It can get REAL tempting. Fortunately I’ve never been super fond of pork.

    3. I always liked Belkar Bitterleaf’s version of that, from The Order of the Stick: “Solve a man’s problems with violence, help him for a day. Teach a man to solve his problems with violence, help him for a lifetime!”

      (What Belkar forgets, of course, is that more than half the time this is due to the violence itself having deleterious effects on the length of that lifetime. But the people who, like Conan and Belkar, like the idea of politeness being enforced by threat of skull-splitting always tend to be the ones who want to be in the role of the splitter, and forget what it’s like to live in fear of being the splittee.)

      1. That’s one reason some cultures disliked archers… any schmuck with a bow or crossbow could take out a warrior or noble at a distance.

        I expect that’s one reason the Fed has its knickers in a twist over drones. The’re cheaper than guns and don’t require line of sight…

    4. Or there’s also Terry Pratchett’s version: “Build a man a fire and he’ll be warm for a day. Set that man on fire, and he’ll be warm for the rest of his life.”

    1. Progressivism is an ideology for the masses. Mass poverty, mass starvation, mass graves.

          1. And even then, there’s often a need to thump it a few times to get it to display all the comments so you can find the right one. The more comments and the deeper in-thread, the more thumping needed. It can be charitably called sub-optimal. Or it can be called a heinous painus in the anus. Or perhaps even BAD: Broken As Designed.

              1. And it ain’t like we often get large amounts of comments threading in and out of various oddball subjects . . . within an hour of Milady hitting Post.

      1. Progressivism is an ideology for the masses. Mass poverty, mass starvation, mass graves. — Jeff Gauch

        I can see that on a t-shirt.
        It might be almost as triggering as “It’s OK to be white.”

  9. A recent example of what you’re talking about with the French revolution would be the Occupy Wall Street (and everywhere else) group. They talked a lot about being the representatives of the downtrodden, but if you looked at who was profiled in that group, it told a different story. There was the guy who quit his job to get a Masters in Puppetry, then was shocked to find out that there weren’t many jobs that wanted people with Masters degrees in Puppetry. And of course the young woman who was a professional musician living in NYC who resented the fact that she couldn’t afford to buy designer jeans and eat out every night.

    This was not a story of the poor resenting the rich or even the middle-class resenting the rich. It was a tale of the upper middle-class and the lower-upper class resenting the fact that they weren’t part of the truly elite.

      1. By which they mean, “get a degree, and we* will be financially well-off.”

        *We includes but is not limited to: people who sell degrees, people who finance purchases of degrees, people who service debt from purchasing degrees, politicians who promise to enable obtaining degrees at lower apparent costs, people who certify institutions occupied with selling of degrees …

        1. Someone observed “you hear about people demanding free college, but they never demand free trade school.”

    1. That poor shmoo with the MA in puppetry bugs me a lot. Yes, to a degree, he’s an idiot. But he didn’t commit that idocy all by himself. Over time we have come to a place in which Society tells kids that anything they want to do, they need a degree in. They told HIM “Oh, you want to be a puppeteer? Get a degree in it!”. And apparently it never occured to him to hitch-hike to LA and get a job runnning coffee for Jim Henson Studio, and work his way in from there.

      I’m sad about him. I’m furiously ANGRY at the college that sold him what they must have known was a worthless degree.

      1. I’m furiously ANGRY at the college that sold him what they must have known was a worthless degree.
        What?! How dare you other the college in that fashion. And the alumni! Alumnus! Whatever! The only reason it’s a worthless degree is because Wall Street demands everyone learn to handle their bourgeois lucre and to conform to their Capitalist social constructs – like “job” and “rent” and “groceries”. You and your privilege are the whole problem! Your h8 is why that poor man was jobless!
        /college admin diversity specialist and puppet counselor

        1. College admin diversity specialists and puppet counselors are an insideous infestation, but can usuall be brought under control by vigorous application of a finishing hammer.

      2. Others have suggested schemes by which a college eats a portion of the debt accumulated for unmarketable degrees. That’s debt relief I can endorse!

        1. Full student loan forgiveness, including refunding those who made their payments, with the cost being covered equally by an excise tax on university endowments and a tax surcharge on anyone working in a field the DOL says requires a degree.

            1. Those will go extinct too quickly to earn nearly enough money, unless you were offering the licenses at a few million per.

      3. It all boils down to the definition of a worthless degree. An Art degree? It depends on if you think art is worthwhile, which in turn often depends on what it’s used for. Degrees for things like acting and performance art? *IF* someone is able to get a job because of what they learned, then maybe it’s worthy. Except the college I went to, the theater department was easily the largest department in the school, and there are very few real paying jobs for theater work even here in Orlando with Disney right around the corner. I knew some of the people who got those degrees. Most of them didn’t make enough to pay their student loans.

        1. I know a few people who have marketable MFA degrees. Mind you, we’re talking absurd levels of talent—one of the ladies I’m thinking of has sung at Carnegie Hall, and she wasn’t even 25 yet. Spectacular voice, incredibly deep. (Most women don’t get decent in the low ranges until after 25. This one was singing contralto at the age 17, in opera.)

          But note this: They are outliers. They are incredibly talented and very dedicated, driven workers. They got their degrees because it was the natural progression, not because they thought it would be “fun.” I love theatre. I enjoy doing it. I did not pursue a degree in theatre because I realized from a very young age (sub-double digits) that I didn’t have the drive to overcome my natural handicaps*.

          *I am moderately talented and “handsome, considering,” as Granny Weatherwax once said. Those are, in fact, handicaps in the ultra-competitive world of theatre, and I preferred to pick options in which I had a decent chance of success.

      4. To a certain extent, that’s true, but this guy was not a “kid.” He was in his mid-twenties and had had a good job as a teacher for several years before he decided that a graduate degree in puppetry was the way to secure his future.

        I hate the “college fixes everything” crowd too, but saying that they’re responsible for this guy is different only in degree from saying criminals are victims of their horrible childhood. At some point, you have to buck up and take responsibility for your own choices, even if you made those choices based on someone else’s bad advice.

        1. I still want to know at what point wanting to be a puppeteer would focus you on Higher Education instead of working for a studio that does it. Ok, I was born in 1961, but my family has long generations amd I picked up a lot of my social reflexes from my folks (I know who yells “Don’t McGee! And why.). But if I’d wanted to be a Puppeter, I would have tried to get work for Henson or somebody similar (I didn’t. I was a depraved child who considered all kinds of puppets tiresome).

    2. Higher Education is a government backed scam on par with Social Security.
      In this case, government paid guidance counselors tell kids to go into debt to the government to pay for an education at what is often a government owned institution.
      And to broaden the net for a larger group of suckers, those government institutions offer all sorts of idiot studies and useless degrees.
      And that poor kid is lied to- that his degree alone will give him instant access to a highly paid career without too much work.
      Eventually that bubble is going to break.

      1. Yes, the bubble is going to break. No, it isn’t quite the scam you imagine. It’s a different scam.

        See, the Progressive Intellectuals took over the colleges (gradually, or they’d have thrown my Father out before he got too eminent to mess with), and while the Baby Boom was moving through, they had plenty of undergrads to fill the xourses and justify the tenured position. Then the Boomers started trailing off, and the Liberal Intellectual Academics were faced with the prospect of actually havng to live like scholars of earlier ages. Well! That CLEARLY wouldn’t do! So they widened their nets, and started pulling in high school students who in another age would have been getting their first jobs. And they sold the idea that a BA really MEANT something in a Junior Executive for a widgets firm.

        One of their better con jobs, really.

        But the jig is just about up. The attacks I hear and read on the ‘for profit’ colleges and the schemes for ‘free college for everybody’ are the traditional colleges fighting a bitter rearguard action.

        1. That’s not to far from my Unified Theory of Higher Education Collapse.
          Before WWII, Higher Education was either 1)Trade Schools (including STEM & medicine) or 2)Finishing Schools for the Wealthy (including Law School). You had to be smart for #1, connected for #2, and rich for either.

          Then, WWII ended and the GI Bill came along. Suddenly, you had a lot of men able to afford to go to college, and due to the post war boom, a lot of jobs available for those with degrees. Which is the source of “degree = automatic good job”.

          However, with that expansion, you also get a whole lot of unhireable grads in the Squishy Nonsense fields. Traditionally, the schools would hire each other’s Squishy Nonsense grads to keep their placement numbers up, while also trying to put up airs of sophistication. Because Squishy Nonsense is very European and hip and cosmopolitan and sophisticated.

          Then, the 60’s happened, and the number of students bloomed like a retention pond in August. Lots of people trying to get draft deferments by studying Squishy Nonsense, and getting unneeded and unwanted degrees in same. Which caused more demand for Squishy Nonsense Departments, which meant the Squishy Nonsense Profs could take over running the schools.

          Then, the next load of manure hit the septic pond, and that’s the Student Loan scam. Now, everyone could go to a school and get a degree- even if you’re not smert enuf for STEM or something similar. Because you aint gotta be smert for the Squishy Nonsense Studies. And don’t worry about paying back those loans- you’re going to be rich when you graduate!!
          Meanwhile, the Squishy Studies Nonsense continues to spread and multiply- right to the point where a degree is about to become a positive liability in the job market.

          1. A vast amount of the weight that degrees carry came from the elimination of job skills tests (civil rights movement). If you can’t test the applicant to see if they can do the job, then you have to set measurable criteria. “4-year degree or 6 years experience” is about the only legal way to set job requirements nowadays.

          2. Your theory doesn’t account for the existence of genuine scholars, which isn’t all that surprising, seeing that they have always been a small minority. Colleges and Universities sustained themselves by providing daycare for the sins of the wealthy, going right back to the Renaissance. Off and on they have also been places where various political factions could stash people whose politics nurtured or amused them. They could draw a nice salary for being a political pain in the ass to the faction’s opponents, while ostensibly teaching or researching.

            Scholarship was a minor side effect. But not an unimportant one. My father was a genuine Scholar. He lived his intellectual life in the 18th Century. The faculties of the institutions he taught at treated him with either respect (the other scholars) or fear (the political pillocks).

  10. The socialists in Europe have decided to commit suicide by Islam.
    In a few years we will not have to worry about European Socialists they will all be dead or enslaved.

    Oh, sorry, I forgot, the Socialist LEADERS that lead and caused the suicide will have left before Islam takes over.

      1. They will of course come here to carefully explain to us what we are doing wrong and how to correct it.
        Our decision will have to be whether to refuse them entry, or let them in to see if any might be capable of redemption by conversion to capitalists.

        1. I look at books like Colonel Kratman’s “Caliphate” and wonder how in the world he got such a Pollyannaish (Shut up spell check. That totally is a word) view of the future.

        2. Our decision will have to be whether to refuse them entry, or let them in to see if any might be capable of redemption by conversion to capitalists fertilizer.

          1. I’m not sure I’d want anything that toxic and stupid to be used near anything I might end up eating.

  11. Well sometimes a smart big chief Ogg will make sure that more kids are feed than was done by the big chief he killed. 😉

    1. And if new chief Ogg like Ogg’s women to have a little padding on their bones he will ensure those “friendly” to him not starve, either.

      In fact, a pretty clear correlation can likely be found between women “friendly” to Ogg and non-starving women and children.

      1. Smart chief Ogg sees warriors gathering around Trog and thinks “don’t want to give Trog the same excuse that I had, so better make sure Trog supporters are also well-fed”. 😉

            1. Same as it ever was.

              “We are very slightly changed
              From the semi-apes who ranged
              India’s Prehistoric clay;
              He that drew the longest bow
              Ran his brother down, you know,
              As we run men down to-tday.

              “Dowb,” the first of all his race,
              Met the Mammoth face to face
              On the lake or in the cave:
              Stole the steadiest canoe,
              Ate the quarry others slew,
              Died — and took the finest grave.

              When they scratched the reindeer-bone,
              Some one made the sketch his own,
              Filched it from the artist — then,
              Even in those early days,
              Won a simple Viceroy’s praise
              Through the toil of other men.
              Ere they hewed the Sphinx’s visage
              Favouritism governed kissage,
              Even as it does in this age.

              Who shall doubt “the secret hid
              Under Cheops’ pyramid”
              Was that the contractor did
              Cheops out of several millions?
              Or that Joseph’s sudden rise
              To Comptroller of Supplies
              Was a fraud of monstrous size
              On King Pharaoh’s swart Civilians?

              Thus, the artless songs I sing
              Do not deal with anything
              New or never said before.
              As it was in the beginning
              Is to-day official sinning,
              And shall be for evermore!”

  12. Remove the trammels that keep people down, and people will rise. Yes, even the ‘underclass.’

    Let’s make the switch
    With just a few annuities
    We’ll hide those incongruities
    In clothes from Abercrombie Fitch

    When the idle poor
    Become the idle rich
    When the idle poor
    Become the idle rich

  13. Torby would have done well in any circumstances.

    I don’t think so. Had he remained on Earth and been raised in coddled luxury and privilege he may well have grown up to be a wastrel and layabout, idle and useless (or worse), a member of a parasitical class. Rudbek of Rudbek, indeed.

    Had it not been for Baslim’s purchasing of him he would have probably been an unruly slave, regularly beaten and, in all likelihood, eventually castrated.

    Had it not been for Baslim’s mentoring he may well have grown up ignorant and arrogant, imagining himself far more knowledgeable than was true.

    Like most children, Thorby could have easily been wraped or damaged by adverse circumstances and no more have “done well” than if raised by the Great Apes of Africa.

    1. Got it in one! Without Baslim’s hitting him alongside the head with a cluebat, he would have died in chains. He almost did anyway when Baslim freed him early on. He was smart enough to go back to the old man.

      1. Okay, once Baslim had reared him, Thorby (I keep typing it without the h. Don’t even know why. Just did it) would have done well anywhere. I didn’t specify that, but it’s what I meant.

        1. once Baslim had reared him

          Oh, yeah, hell yeah. I dare say anybody The Colonel reared would have been a survivor. Thorby had the native talents but absent focus and discipline those were useless at best.

  14. “This is the same school of thought that thinks that if murder were legal for a day, no one would be left alive.”

    Ah yes, The Purge franchise. Where the deep social commentary is: “If Christians took over they’d make it legal to kill people one day out of the year for reasons.”

    I’m sure you all recall those sermons where Jesus exhorted his followers to legalize murder, right?

    1. Which translation is that in, again? I’ve got KJV and NIV and the editors seem to have left it out. ‘Course, they also left out Maccabees and a few other books as well.

        1. It’s in the Star Trek version, right out of the chapter “Return of the Archons”. ‘Cause guys-in-robes.

    2. My wife enjoyed the second movie of that series in particular, noting that it has a very Escape from New York modern barbarism feel to it. But like you I was simply never able to suspend my disbelief enough to buy it, either (a) that the people to whom the movies attributed the phenomenon would actually pass such laws or (b) that such events would work at all, much less have the purported effect on civic peace and crime rates.

      1. The Purge might happen. Once. All the vermin who tried to take advantage of it would either destroy the city they were in, or come roaring out of it and run bang into a freeform militia of flyover folks armed with shotguns and an “Oh, I don’t THINK so!” attitude.

        This is why almost all Westerns are fantasy; the frontier (especially when there is silver or gold being mined) may get a little wild, but once the farmers arrive the shootists soon learn that a six-gun and a fast draw is very little use against three neighbors armed with shotguns.

        1. I went to high school with flyover folks and still know a lot of them. It wouldn’t be shotguns.

        2. Pretty much this – yeah. There were certain boom-towns (gold- and silver-rush towns, plus towns in Kansas and westwards which were the terminus for the long-trail cattle drives) where seasonal workers might have gotten rowdy and playful with guns in the streets, in the season … but after a certain time, were quite suffocationly law-abiding. It might actually have been safer in certain western towns in the last half of the 19th century than in the worst parts of eastern big cities.
          A lot of the wild west reputation for post-Civil War towns might be laid at the foot of sensational newspaper coverage of the time…

          1. I think a lot of the “Wild West” mythos is from looking back, taking several decades worth of crime and violence, over half a continent and then mentally compressing it as though it were over a single weekend in Chicago.

          2. A lot of the wild west reputation for post-Civil War towns might be laid at the foot of sensational newspaper coverage of the time…

            Are you suggesting there was once a time when American Journalists were not utterly reliable in their reporting of facts, wholly objective in their reporting of events and untarnished by filthy lucre nor dreams of fame and avarice?

              1. Journalism has LAWAYS been biased. Biased politically and biased toward sensationalism. The biggest lie the Left ever sold us was the idiotic notion that there could be an unbiased media.

        3. Oh, I’d give it twice, maybe three times.
          Once because people couldn’t believe it would actually happen.
          Twice for the vengeance for what happened the first time.
          Thrice and your scenario happens.

          1. What I want to know, is why murder, specifically?

            Given a night where any crimes committed couldn’t be [punished, I would have thought jewel heists would be more profitable

        4. There were some exceptions, though, such as during “Range Wars.” And a few gangs who didn’t stick around in any one place long did have an extended career, but they were a definite rarity.

          1. A lot of the “Indian massacres” I know of were this way, too– basically roving bands of psychopaths that were not QUITE as fast as they thought they were.

            (As I’ve told before– one was supposedly a case of false identity. Problem: the head bastard still had the locally famous mustache of a mutilated murder victim in his serial-killer collection. Having met the grandson of the murder victim, totally believable that it would be recognizable and a target for a psycho trophy-taker group. They called it scalping, but….)

  15. Here’s the BEST was to deal with children.

    Once they start walking and talking, stop GIVING them everything. Start making them EARN everything they get. Yes, that includes meals. When they’re old enough to load and unload the dishwasher (or wash by hand), make that a part of their daily chores. Chores not done? You don’t get to eat until they are. Your serving will be in the fridge until then. (Obviously if sick or injured, we moderate that.) Sweeping and mopping floors. Washing walls. Making beds. Doing laundry (including folding, and putting away or hanging up. Yard work. Snow and ice clearing. You know, all the stuff that supposedly kids do for an allowance; but introduce the allowance only after they get the concept of doing chores = eating well. Consider that allowance introduction to be a form of inflation. And don’t increase it too fast or too much either. You want to encourage your kids to think about other ways to earn money outside the house (and I don’t mean opening non-prescription pharmaceutical distribution either.)

    Sometimes I think giving our children everything without their actually earning it is the main reason so many of them have become entitled progressive-socialists. Only they’ve transferred Mommy and Daddy Big Bucks to Government Big Bucks, while not realizing that Mommy and Daddy are where Government get their bucks from in the first place.

    1. (and I don’t mean opening non-prescription pharmaceutical distribution either.)
      And if they want to do pharmaceutical distribution, then it’s time to introduce them to The Lesson of the Red Tape. 😉

    2. According to NYC’s ACS (child protective services, I don’t know what the actual wording is offhand) you must feed your child something s/he will eat. Not only can you not withhold food until your child does his/her chores, you can’t tell your child that they must finish their dinner before getting any other food. If your child doesn’t eat, it’s your fault.

      Said ACS is in the process of preventing our neighbor from salvaging her foster children by forbidding her from cracking down on them. The ten-or-eleven-year-old daughter of a crack whore is bidding fair to follow in Mommy’s footsteps, the slightly older brother sometimes hangs out with a bad crowd. ACS won’t let her either crack down hard on the kids or remove them from her house (they have to take the kids if she really insists but they say they’ll take her day care license too and then investigate the parents of any kids who continue to send their kids to an unlicensed day care.)

      Getting investigated by ACS because of an anonymous complaint made me want to transform them from an investigative agency to one who takes kids when the police have to confiscate them for actual crimes. Watching the way they enable bad behavior from foster children makes me want to see it go away entirely.

      The pair aren’t bad kids! They’re just out-of-control the way teenagers and pre-teens are often out of control, with some bad upbringing from their mother (who is still a bad influence.) But they’ve figured out that their (retired-age) foster mother isn’t allowed to control them, and they’re starting to get less civilized, not more civilized. The mother’s an irresponsible git who genuinely thinks the way to get kids to behave is to give them as much freedom as they like, but if ACS didn’t enable her she’d just be a bad influence one Saturday a month (what the judge ordered.)

      We live in Crazy Years.

            1. She was one of the better character spots in the movie! (….wait for it on DVD, adult fans; kids will love it, go get the collectibles, do it to say you did. But. The made for TV movies were better.)

        1. We live in the AR-15 Chainsaw Bayonet Years…

          (Or USA Today seems to think. It’s being very mercilessly mocked on Twitter.)

      1. Getting investigated by ACS because of an anonymous complaint made me want to transform them from an investigative agency to one who takes kids when the police have to confiscate them for actual crimes.

        That is a rather good idea…..

        1. None at all, this time (insights, that is. There might well have been a significant mythological turnout there). I didn’t vote, but that’s as there was actually nothing here on which to vote

    1. Percentage wise, low. I know Virginia. Still have family living up there. You look the county-by-county map, it is (mostly) a sea of red with tiny blue dots around the Arlington/Richmond area, with others speckled around places like Virginia Beach and a couple of other cities.

      Voter fraud does happen. Places like Manassas? I could believe it. Wise, Hampton, Washington counties? *highly* unlikely. The old ladies there are sharp. In the larger cities? Sister, the Walking Dead ain’t just a tv show…

      Virginia has been a deeply purple state for at least twenty years now. They tend to go the opposite direction of the sitting president’s party. The real surprise to me would have been Gillespie taking the governer’s seat. He was a hack, but a hack that was better when he was telling folks how bat the *other* guy was… Himself, he wasn’t anything to get excited about. My cousins know the type.

      A point to pay attention to, is the dems now have partial control of the state legislature. Perhaps more than that, if some R’s get wobbly. This past legislature is the group that stared down McAulffe when he made to revoke Virginia’s reciprocity agreements with other states for concealed carriers. He wanted to do this, and more, to “send a message.” The message he got in return was, “alrighty. If guns are the problem, we’re stripping your protective detail. No more funding for that little detail, since guns are the real problem.

      Look for taxes to go up on businesses, gun legislation shenanigans, sanctuary state laws, and a pot lot of symbolic “resistence” measures to get ramrodded through as fast as they can, until the next state congress boots them out again and sets to trying to undo the damage.

      Rural Virginia is getting screwed again. This is especially bad for some of the smaller towns in the Southwest, where they already have problems with major budget shortfalls following a few disasterous ventures and the power company corruption scandal that effectively decapitated the whole upper tier of management. Places that were looking desperately for some sort of economic growth are going to see the aid they were promised swept away for some idiot freshman legislator’s pet project.

      The bright side, if there be one here, is the relatively short memory that Richmond seems to have. They don’t tend to hang on to gains in the legislature like this for very long. Look for control of the state house to swing back to slight majority Republican before long, and the state senate shortly thereafter.

  16. One of the reasons that intellectual historians [people who study the history of ideas, not Intellectuals who are historians] didn’t recognize the English/Scottish Enlightenment as being part of the Enlightenment is because the Anglo version looked much more at “how can people improve themselves? What keeps people from improving themselves? How can individual vices be turned into social virtues?” Adam Smith, John Wesley, Josiah Wedgewood and others encouraged education of the masses so that the masses could buy stuff (Wedgewood) and feed themselves and their children better and tithe (Wesley) and be less likely to be corrupted by sin and hunger (Wesley). Enlightened self interest could help everyone prosper (Smith).

    Compared to “Scrap ALL the THINGS!!!!” (Rousseau, sort of) and “We need the noble, wise monarch to make all these changes and impose freedom and toleration on people by shattering tradition the way we want it shattered,” (Voltaire), all written in lovely French and appealing to Reason and Emotion instead of self-interest and filthy lucre, the Anglo-Scots are pretty dull and unimaginative. But the French and Germans drew on the Brits.

    1. So the French ‘Enlightenment’ was the intellectual equivalent of modern architecture: different, sure, but hideously rotten? And then the various things… Modernism (uh huh..), Post-Modernism (Which is NOT futurism, as that would be more logical, so therefore it mustn’t be allowed), Brutalism (how did honesty get in here?).

      Feh. Gimme Art Deco.

    2. People always talk about “If I could go back in time, I’d want to talk to….”, and I understand the impulse.

      But I’ve also had a list of people I would dearly love to take after with a ball peen hammer, and Rousseau leads it. Not Stalin or that despicable Austrian. Rousseau.

      1. The time-traveler appeared, ghost-like, and took the “philosopher” on a tour of a future history: murderous revolution after murderous revolution, war after war, purge after purge. The philosopher asked, again and again, how it could be, who was responsible? Finally the time traveler pointed to an overturned picture frame in answer. The philosopher turned it up.. to discover the frame contained a mirror.

      1. Saw a story once about a woman going around to small antique shops. She was shocked at all of the “Wedgewood” china she found for sale. (Apparently, the same unicorn and so on, but without the trademark registration number.)

    1. My father knew the (then) Sir John Wedgwood, because of his interest in the Lunar Society of Birmingham. My parents were given a three day tour of the factory on their honeymoon. I evenmmet Sir John myself, though I scarcely remember him.

  17. One of my relatives posted a snarky meme during the day or two that the Dreamer program being ended was trending showing some hillbilly/redneck types saying they were going to get a tech job now that the Dreamers were out of the way. The meme was presented in a way that you were supposed to say “Ha ha, look at the poor, ugly, unintelligent peasants thinking they can get a tech job”, but hot damn. Wouldn’t it be great if we could move even just some low level tech jobs to Appalachia/West Virginia/other badly depressed places? The accents aren’t any harder to understand that Indian accents, and why should it be a bad thing for people whose main crime was being born in the wrong place to have future prospects other than overdosing heroin? And of course, the people liking the meme were upper middle class Leftists who live is prosperous areas, who will swear up and down that the Right is the side that doesn’t care about the poor.

    1. Well obviously those Hicks aren’t the right type of poor. If they just followed their superiors in the cities they’d be fine.

    2. As I understand it, it was “some hillbilly/redneck types” in …. mmm, I want to say Mingo County, West Virginia that first figured out how to hack the computer voting machines.

      Read long ago and no cite offered.

    3. Back when I was working call centers, I remember that folks from the Appalachians were often among those who went unrecognized by voice recognition systems. The more they enunciated numbers and letters, the more they were emphasizing vocal features that the computers had not been taught. But of course, to a human, the accent doesn’t sound particularly strange or difficult to understand.

    4. There are plenty of tech jobs out there for tech that require adherence to a script. The more creative types we generally associate with tech jobs tend to chafe under the restrictions but anybody that’s qualified for assembly line work won’t.

  18. This is a part of the “and before government stuck its head in, we all died” version of history the left loves. It isn’t true, it was never true.

    Like all really powerful lies, though, it does have some truth mixed in– there is a balance between the cost involved in having regulation, vs the costs in not having it. (Apple maggot quarantine comes to mind– or the way very few people lose their entire herds to infectious diseases, anymore. And it’s not just better medicine!)
    We are so far into the costs side that it’s mostly only relevant to avoid driving off the other side in the very long run, but gotta point it out anyways. 😀

        1. Nah, because there are folks who decide that they “don’t need” to do stuff and avoid the checks (it’s not really that hard)– and they tend to lose their whole herd, or at least the majority of it.

          The big change is that it means they’re usually not wiping out anybody else’s herd, because they’re busy being sneaky, so they tend to avoid people who actually look at the paperwork.

  19. One of the thoughts on the FDA that came to mind was what happened to pharmaceutical companies to get them started. Before all the regulations, there were the snake oil companies and salesmen. They could run into town preceded by some advertising and then skip out before anybody caught on. Then mail order made it a bit easier. Too many complaints and they’d shut down, change the label and the business address and start up again. I don’t think anything has been able to make those go away.

    But the companies that actually made it were the ones who took it seriously. Sure, they didn’t have the same rules for studies or investigations on how things worked, but they took it seriously enough that people started to trust their products more than the fly-by-night guys. The doctors, who were going through similar growing pains, also took the successes seriously so they promoted the better stuff. And those companies were big and trusted and successful before the FDA.

    1. I don’t think anything has been able to make those go away.
      By a quick perusal of my spam folder, if anything, they’ve grown.

      1. yep.

        “The labeling on this product is not intended to indicate that it can cure or treat any disease or disorder.”

        On shelves all over the country, too.

  20. Say no to the oldest ploy in the world. Be a true champion of the underclass. Demand they pull themselves up by their bootstraps.

    I’d amend that to “Help them pull themselves…”. More teaching principles of self-reliance, fewer handouts. Me, I’m busy tugging on my own bootstraps…

  21. “Remove the trammels that keep people down, and people will rise.”

    Just en passant, may I extend my compliments for using the noun “trammel” and reminding us where the word “untrammelled” originally came from.

    1. In Googling for the meaning of trammel I discovered a 10 acre fossil park nearby, named after the R.L. Trammel family that donated the land for it. Huh. Interesting.

      1. The land of glorious gravel. Pretty cool place, if it’s the place I think it is. The thing is, they let you dig for fossils and keep them, whereas most parks object strongly.

    1. Friend worked closing shift at a convenience store (works elsewhere now) and some nights I’d stop in for a bit near the end of the shift. One night was I greeted with, “Oh, good. You’re the most normal thing to walk through the door tonight.”

      This is NOT a greeting I am used to. Evidently it had been one hell of an “interesting” evening.

  22. The model of simple populism is obviously inadequate for politics of “championing” the powerless, at least the version we may observe in real time.
    There’s so much more than this.

    1. Usurpation. It may be an intrinsic part. The observed phenomenon often does not receive, and usually does not require any actual support or even approval from the “championed” party.
    Evidence: aside of #NotYourShield, there’s championing of puppies and kitties (e.g. PETA), as well as trees and birds (the Fake Green in general). Obviously, neither of them can as much as recognise their “champions”, let alone lend any sort of practical support, donations, or serve as a force explicitly or implicitly backing a threat (not even in a Zhukov style bluff).
    2. Destruction. The above examples consistently lead to puppies and kitties being killed as “contaminated” with evil hu-mon influence, trees converted to biofuel and birds chopped by turbines. Hmm. Looks like not only the help of “benefactors” remains every bit as good as it was for “proletariat” and peasants, but this outcome seems to be too consistent to not also be an intrinsic part of this phenomenon.

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