We Can’t Afford Socialism-by Amanda S. Green


We Can’t Afford Socialism – by Amanda S. Green

If you think life is expensive now, wait till how much it costs when it’s “free”.

One of the most important reasons for studying history is that virtually every stupid idea that is in vogue today has been tried before and proved disastrous before, time and again. – Thomas Sowell


This morning, as I sat down to write this post, I stared at the computer screen wondering what in the world I was going to blog about. I didn’t have a book review ready to go (those will resume next week, thanks to the generosity of TRX). Looking at the headlines didn’t lead to anything I felt I could sink my teeth into – at least not without lots of cussing and Sarah sort of frowns on that. VBG. Then I saw the above quote posted by a friend along with this article on another friend’s wall. And, well, today’s post was born.

In her article, Carmen Alexe writes about what it was like growing up in Romania during the 1970’s and 1980’s. At that time, Romania was a country rich in resources and poor in so many other ways. Yes, there were lines for what we look at as basics – bread, milk, eggs, etc. Romanians couldn’t go to the neighborhood store and find anything and everything they wanted. The resources the country had were allocated by the government and that didn’t always mean that allocation was to the benefit of the citizenry.

The state controlled almost every aspect of our lives: our education, our job placement, the time of day we could have hot water, and what we were allowed to say. . . Despite the fact that Romania was a country rich in resources, there were shortages everywhere. Food, electricity, water, and just about every one of life’s necessities were in short supply.

How would any of us react if our landlords decreed there would be hot water available only two hours a day? Think about yourself as a teen, knowing that pack of gum you want is a luxury and might not be available for months – or longer. Consider having to turn to the black market to get blue jeans or other “fashionable” clothing. Consider living in a country where this is how you feel:

God bless our black-market entrepreneurs! They made our lives better. They gave us the opportunity to buy things we very much desired, things we couldn’t get from the government-owned retail stores which were either half-empty or full of products that were ugly and of poor quality.

According to Alexe, and just about anyone else with an ounce of common sense who has lived under the Soviet/Russian regime, economics is at the heart of many of the problems with communism.

Due to its profit incentives, capitalism encourages innovation. Innovation leads to progress and an increase in the standard of living. But progress and the climate which offers humans a high standard of living cannot be created without the capital to transform and turn resources into the final products that give us the—relatively—cheap energy and food, smartphones, fitness gyms, and overall the life we currently afford. Capital moves in the direction of less regulation, less government intervention, and less taxation. In short, capital moves to where there’s more economic freedom.

In contrast, communism, socialism, fascism, or just about any government-controlled system lacks the profit incentive. The people, who are the human resources, have no desire to engage in a business where the reward is not attainable (unless it’s done in the black markets). They accept the state and its bureaucratic cronies to dictate their faith.

Yet, what are we looking at in our country right now? We have politicians – yes, I’m looking at you, DNC – who want to tear down our way of life, strip us of our capitalist tendencies and turn us into Socialist “paradises”. They don’t even try to hide it these days.

In a recent interview, Hillary Clinton basically said she lost the election because so many Democrats are socialists and she admitted to being a capitalist.

“It’s hard to know, but if you’re in the Iowa caucuses and 41 percent of Democrats are socialists, or self-described socialists, and I’m asked, ‘Are you a capitalist?’ And I say, ‘Yes, but with appropriate regulation and appropriate accountability,’ you know, that probably gets lost in the ‘Oh my gosh, she’s a capitalist.'”

There’s a lot of ifs, ands and buts in there but when you get down to it. She said several things of importance. First, at least in Iowa – which has for decades touted as the indicator of how the Democratic Party leans – almost half the Democrats identify as socialists. Considering Iowa is more conservative than bastions of the Democratic Party like California and New York, that number is probably higher nationwide.

Now let’s look at what Clinton herself said. She identifies as a capitalist – coff, coff, Clinton Foundation – but with modifiers. She’s a capitalist but there should be regulation and accountability. In other words, the government gets to limit capitalism and, in turn, limit innovation and the improvement of our standard of living. Of course, with folks like Clinton, that limitation only applies to others, not to them. After all, they are the more equal among equal. Double standards are us.

But Clinton’s not the only one. We have Nancy “Crumbs” Pelosi, she who has her own fortune, turning her nose up at the $2,000 tax break most of the rest of us received under President Trump even as she has promised to take that tax break away from us. You know what removing a tax break really is? It is a tax increase. And this is one of the platforms the Democrats are running on.

To say the DNC and their candidates don’t get basic economics is putting it mildly. Or, if they do get it, they ignore it. We have them tossing out such proposals as universal healthcare, single payer healthcare, education for everyone, etc. Yet, when asked to specify how these programs will be paid for, we get – at best – handwavium. We’re told the government will pay for them. But, other than saying they will cut military spending, they don’t say where that money comes from.

We know where, don’t we?

It will come from our pockets. Worse, if they do cut funding for the military and other programs, what will be the result? Making our country even weaker than it is now. And that, I’m afraid, is their goal.

Think about it. Today voters in Maryland have a traitor running for U. S. Senate. Yes, a traitor. Bradley, now Chelsea, Manning, former member of the military, oath breaker and traitor, smiles for the media and spits (figuratively if not literally) on the graves of every man and woman who died in the service of the country. And what does Manning want to happen if elected?

  • No borders, no restrictions, nothing
  • No prisons.
  • Universal and single payer health care
  • No cops.
  • Abolish ICE because it is “ramping up for a massive ethnic cleansing in America.”
  • Universal basic income

There is more, but you get the idea. Sounds familiar on a number of points, doesn’t it? And how well have those policies worked?

The European Union is suffering greatly because of its open borders policy. Without some sort of immigration oversight, there is no way to protect the country and its citizens from those whose main desire is to destroy it. Yet the Democrats, and not just Manning, want to severely limit, if not completely do away, with border control. Yes, we need to do something about our immigration policies but simply throwing open the doors isn’t the answer. Besides, even in their demands for immigration reform, the Dems aren’t talking across the board. Despite their rhetoric of being so inclusive in their policies, they are focusing only on certain ethnicities. If they were truly going to be “democratic” about it, they would say we need to open our borders or reform our immigration policies where everyone is concerned – European and Asian as well as Hispanic, etc.

Universal healthcare? Nope. There is a reason so many Canadians and others come to the U.S. for treatment.

I could go on, but it comes down to this: who is going to pay for all these so-called wonderful programs politicians like Clinton, Pelosi, Bernie Sanders and even – gag – Manning propose? We are.

What will the result be? Less money in our pockets and more governmental control over our lives. We are already moving down the road to a country out forefathers couldn’t recognize, one where the Bill of Rights is nothing but a distant memory. Do you want the government telling you what doctor you can go to? Or, worse yet, what treatment you can or can’t have?

If the government is paying for your education, how long before it tells you what you are going to study and, by expansion, what job you will have upon graduation?

The Dems try to scare us with horror stories about what the Trump Administration will do (and I’m no fan of the man, but they are forcing me to support him). Yet, the only real danger I see comes from their camp.

As Alexe writes:

Aside from better economic and legislative policies, what America needs is a more intense appreciation of individual freedom and capitalism. Such a crazy idea is not acquired through public schools or becoming a public servant. Young people don’t need more years of schooling with more worthless college degrees and student loans in default. America needs more entrepreneurs and businessmen. It needs more people with drive and ambition, more self-starters, more innovators, more people who are willing to take chances.

It starts in our own backyard, in our home, in our small group, in our community. It starts with loving, involved, and dedicated parents who’d instill the values of personal responsibility and delayed gratification in their children. It continues with an education that entails both theory and hands-on practice in environments conducive to learning how to think independently and how to acquire life- and work-skills. It evolves into a purpose-driven life rich in learning and experiences. And this may be just the beginning of attaining the intellectual maturity to perceive the value that free markets and individual freedom afford most of us.

It also, as Sowell states, requires that we remember history. All the crazy ideas the Democrats tout today have been touted by crazies before. We’ve seen the path those ideas took countries like Russia and Romania. Do we want that to happen here? I certainly don’t. That means we have to get involved. We have to stand up and speak out. We have to vote and get people with our own core values running for office. It means we fight to take back the media. Most of all, it means we educate out children and not let them fall victim to the indoctrination of our public school systems. Teach them about looking at issues for themselves and doing their research before drawing a conclusion. Teach them about how there are consequences for actions and inactions. Teach them the value and importance of independence and of ambition. If we lose the drive, if we lose the innovation, we have lost.

I don’t know about you but I refuse to go quietly into the night and I sure as hell don’t want our kids to live in a system that doesn’t value them and allow them to do and be all they can.

Let’s not sit still while history tries to repeat itself here, in our own house.


267 thoughts on “We Can’t Afford Socialism-by Amanda S. Green

  1. Dems will fully support protecting the borders once they have their way. Like East Germany, the patrols will be to keep people in. Socialism/Communism/Nazism/fascism and Marx in any other flavors is so great you have to force people to stay under its boot heal

    1. Not at first. At first, they will do the EU bit of letting anyone and everyone over. Then, when that blows up in their faces, they will blame the conservatives and close the borders. Because, as you pointed out, they have to keep the people in.

    2. You know, when the State Department started requiring Americans to all have passports even to go back and forth to Canada, that was the start of their control and keeping people in. First you make it harder for them to travel back and forth. Required passports. TSA searches. Higher costs to fly. Crammed together even worse than slave ships.

      1. A passport isn’t required for land or water crossings between Canada and the US. I believe an enhanced driver’s license, passport card, or NEXUS card is required for adults, or a birth certificate for children under 16 (plus notarized form if accompanying adult is not the parent). For air, you are quite correct about requiring a passport.

        1. IF you don’t have all the above, require all of the above a passport is STILL required If I want to cross the Peace Bridge for a day trip from Niagara Falls. And all the other pieces of ID you mentioned are essentially a passport named differently.

        2. Sort of. You need a passport if you want to come back afterwards without a lot of fuss and wasted time.
          However, you can leave the United States without a passport via land or water, and no one can stop you.

            1. Kind of. There is an exemption available on your income taxes for being overseas, but you are still liable for Social Security.

              1. Two types of “Passports”, not counting the new enhanced driver’s-licenses/state-id-cards that get you on non-international flights.

                1. Book “Full” Passport – good for any national/international travel, anywhere.
                2. Border Card Passport – good for any ground any national travel, good for any Ground travel internationally within the Pacific, Atlantic, & Caribbean/Gulf of Mexico. Or you can drive or boat (cruise), but can not fly internationally. But you can’t boat to Europe, Asia, South America, etc., just “locally”.

                You can have both. Which is what we will do when our’s are due for renewal. We only have the Border Card, as we drive to Canada. Rather difficult to load the trailer & fly, let alone add the truck for towing when we get there 😉

  2. “…a country in which the government owned all the resources and means of production.”

    This, of course, is what socialists mean when they say that under socialism, “the people” own the means of production (“people” being here defined as “whichever thugs managed to co-opt it first”).

    1. Or, to look at it another way: the government is the “people” and the humans necessary to do the work are the “means of production”.

        1. Since they are currently playing games trying to revive amnesty and pass without a majority it’s definitely a global problem on the potomac.

    2. They get to define “the people” and “means of production”. At that point, the sky’s the limit for what they can justify.

  3. You can’t fix stupid… remember this is the mindset we’re letting in over the southern border, and eventually they’ll vote… for what they left behind and is being enabled by the political left. It’s someone else’s fault if it didn’t work out.

    (If you’re not familiar with “Former Soviet Citizen” Vladimir Jaffe, he asks leading questions of various Marxists and lets ’em fall into their own logical holes.)

  4. Amazon produced comedy tv show last year called Comrade Detective and it is worth watching if you can find it. The idea is that Romanian govt produced tv show in 1980s about two cops in Bucharest trying to solve a murder while also trying to fight the emerging black market for western goods, it is satire but gives glimpse into what totalitarian societies are like.

    Boris Yeltsin went on unscheduled visit to Houston grocery store while he was on official visit to America in late 1980s and that’s what finally convinced him that USSR needed to be reformed. Yeltsin was amazed that ordinary Americans had a wider choice of foods, that were readily available, than members of Politburo had, never mind ordinary Russians.

    1. I’m wondering if that-about seeing what ordinary people have access to-isn’t part of what’s going on with the Norks. Didn’t Kim’s sister go to the Olympics? Did she get some tours while she was there?

      1. The Kim’s were educated elsewhere. Tubby was schooled or spent some time in Switzerland, iirc.
        I think it’s more failure of the project, and pressure from China to time it down, than wanting the good stuff for their subjects

        1. Most of the scions of socialist dictators are educated in the West. Since they tend to go to Ivy schools their ideologies aren’t challenged by their foreign studies.

        2. I think you’re spot on about China. I note that before he started pushing the Norks, Trump had talks with the Chinese. Now, maybe the subject didn’t come up, but in his place I would have asked “Look, your puppet in North Korea is threatening to fire nuclear missiles at my country. If that happens all holy hell is going to break loose, and you are right next door. That could REALLY screw up your economic boom, couldn’t it? I don’t suppose you could tell the little maniac where to head in?”

          1. And/or a hint that Japan and Taiwan may also get some encouragement to join in the race.

          2. China made it clear very early on in the Trump/Nork exchanges that if North Korea actually followed through on its (at the time) threats to nuke Guam – or any other bit of US territory – during a “first use” attack, then China would not provide support for North Korea during the resulting outpouring of US wrath. Even absent encouragement from Trump, the PRC leadership in Beijing know that if any country – including North Korea – were to launch nuclear weapons at US territory, the results would be disasterous for the nation that did so. And any nations that actively supported the launching nation would also suffer greatly in the resulting mess. They’re not stupid.

            Plus, the US is China’s biggest trading partner. And getting involved in a crisis-level dispute with the US because Kim threw a temper tantrum would cause lots of problems for the Chinese economy (and the Chinese citizens might very well get angry at the leadership in Beijing over failing to rein in Kim).

            1. the US is China’s biggest trading partner.

              And the Chinese hold an impressive quantity of US bonds. A very impressive quantity.

              You know the old saying: “When you owe your banker ten thousand dollars you have a problem; when you owe your banker ten trillion dollars your banker has a problem.”

              If the Chinese start dumping US debt that will hurt the dollar … which is to say, the remaining Chinese US debt holdings.

          3. I’ve long felt that North Korea was China’s tool of intimidation. Whenever China wanted something from the West, they’d tell North Korea to up the crazy. Usually this resulted in the US President calling for six-party talks, which meant we had to negotiate with China before they would even agree to sit down at the table.

            Trump broke this pattern by matching Kim bluster for bluster. I’m sure that at the same time the back channels were sending Beijing the message that if they didn’t up their sanctions against the Norks we would do the next best thing and impose sanctions on China.

            I’m interested in seeing if Kim is actually interested in rapprochement or if he’s going to pull an Arafat by talking peace in English by promoting juche in Korean.

            1. I heard someone describe North Korea as China’s annoying little yappy dog and that what Trump did was essentially say, “Look, is this thing yours? If so, get it under control. If not, I’m going to deal with it.”

              1. I’d say that Trump’s North Korea strategy was a combination of that and the parenting technique of getting down on the floor and throwing your own tantrum when your toddler throws a tantrum.

                So far it seems to be incredibly successful.

      2. I believe the socialist dictatorships of the 21st century are better than the USSR at ensuring the “more equal” animals get the same luxuries as are available in the West, even if that means that the less equal ones have to chow down on dirt cookies for lack of anything more nutritious.

    2. One of the things I remember about the USSR was dissidents and others saying that the TV and print media there described how horrible and corrupt the west was and how good the USSR was. Then Soviet citizens saw, heard, or read western news reports about how horrible the west was, and they thought, “It must be great if their own people can criticize them!”

      1. Wasn’t there an incident where the Soviets tried to paint the US in a bad light by releasing a story about how America’s old people had to eat pet food, and the reaction was “America has special food for pets? And it’s is cheap and readily available? Whoa!”

        1. And let’s not forget the Soviet screening of “The Grapes of Wrath”

          “Wait – poor Americans have cars?????”

          1. America is an automobile-based society. They’re the keystone of our civilization; we’re too spread out for walking or mass transit.

            We’ve put three cars on the Moon and one in solar orbit.

            Because we’re Americans. It’s what we do.

        2. Or the tragedy of someone unable to afford paying for a pet’s medical care …

          “There’s medical care for PETS?”

          “Poor can afford PETS?”

          1. Or the Soviets showing the race riots in the ’60’s and ’70’s and the people noticing the looters were carrying out color TVs by the dozen.

            1. “Or the Soviets showing the race riots in the ’60’s and ’70’s and the people noticing the looters were carrying out color TVs by the dozen.”

              Pretty sure that counts as a major Soviet “oops”. We didn’t even have color TV at my parents home until early ’80’s (?) … Think they finally got color TV to keep up with us kids 🙂

        3. A North Korean woman, escaping over the border to China, was hiding behind someone’s house and found herself nose to dish with the dog food: rice with bits of meat. It was better than the latest meal she had eaten.

      2. For some years, my parents hosted Romanian college students over on a summer exchange program. They’d stay with us for several weeks before moving on to other parts of the state. Several things still stand out for me. They were amazed that no one was farming or doing something else to make use of the small strips of land between highway lanes. Several of them talked about how families over there would have been farming them. Then there was the toilet paper. Almost every one of them would take entire rolls of toilet paper and stuff them in their luggage to take home with them. That was no problem — unless you went to the bathroom after everyone went to bed and found no toilet paper in the bathroom at all.

  5. “We’re told the government will pay for them.”

    First challenge. No the government isn’t going to pay for them. The government is going to steal the money of hard working people at gun point to pay for them. “Oh, they don’t take it at gun point.” Really? Ask how not paying taxes worked for Martha Stewart, Nicholas Cage, Pete Rose, Judy Garland, Mike Tysone, Willie Nelson, and Wesley Snipes. I’ll skip Al Capone, Leona Hemsley, Heidi Fleiss and O.J. Simpson, because they did a lot of other unacceptable things besides not paying taxes.

    Manning isn’t the only communist-socialist-progressive running for office on the “No borders, no restrictions, No ICE, No prisons, Universal and single payer health care, No cops, Universal basic income platform. The plague seems to be spreading.

    I go back and read the papers from around 1900-1905 concerning the “anarchists” i.e. communists, fascists, national socialists, and I see the exact same thing going on today. Back then one of my granduncles was kidnapped and killed, my grandaunt almost kidnapped and who knows what else, and my great grandfather was maimed, beaten, stabbed and would have been murdered, but for another granduncle driving them off with a shotgun, because my minister great grandfather had given an anti-anarchy sermon after president McKinley’s assassination.

    Socialism is a disease of human communities that is just as destructive as any bacteria, virus, or other pathogen. It needs to be quickly and strongly opposed anywhere there’s an outbreak. And where ever they turn violent, they need to be ruthlessly exterminated.

    1. > steal the money of hard working people at gun point to pay for them.

      And when the people run out of money, they’ll still serve. Between 20 an 25% of the Soviet economy came from slave labor – the gulags.

      I’ve never seen a figure for how much the Soviets vacuumed out of their satellite states. Czechoslovakia and Poland managed to achieve some measure of prosperity despite Communist rule, until they got too uppity and received extra “assistance” in return…

      1. … when the people run out of money, they’ll still serve.

        And when they’re too feeble to serve there are still some useful body parts that can be harvested for transplant. See also: Falun Gong.

        Far too little Western reporting on China goes into the details of this processing for parts and when it is covered it is generally alluded to rather than described.

    2. It’s greed and envy. While the robber Baron has to at least give his target something, the communist voter expects it for nothing more than a vote.

      “One who has yearnings for equal division of unequal earnings. Idler or bungler, he is willing to fork out his penny and pocket your shilling.” Attributed to Ebanezar Elliot.

    3. Actually, Stewart got into trouble over charges of insider trading, iirc. And it turned out that she wasn’t actually guilty of what she was investigated for. What they got her for was “lying” to the FBI.

      By the way, one of the FBI agents involved with that (the one in charge, actually, iirc) is a fellow that you might have heard of before. He goes by the name of James Comey.

      1. The Boston scandal with Mueller as the head is also quite interesting. My fond hope is that if POTUS actually meets with him, the first words from the president’s mouth would be something like: “Hello Mr Mueller. This nice man is about to place you under arrest.”

        A guy can hope, eh?

    4. For what it’s worth, Martha Stewart was convicted of lying to the FBI; they were talking to her about possible insider trading*. FWIW, they never charged her for insider trading, just the process crimes. Considering they still don’t record interviews, one is allowed to wonder if she really lied.

      search “martha stewart conviction”. Fox news had a decent writeup of the verdict dated 3/8/2004.

      1. > Considering they still don’t record interviews,

        “Don’t talk to the police.”

        “When your lawyer is talking to the police, make your own video.”

      2. “Considering they still don’t record interviews”

        I’ve got to wonder how much longer that will last. One of the unintended consequences of the Russian Collusion fable is the profound loss of prestige for the FBI. It wouldn’t surprise me if juries in the future start discounting the FD-302 as evidence.

        1. I’m already of the opinion that unless proven otherwise by non LE sourcs any fed is lying thru their teeth.

        2. CBS is putting out a new police show for this fall. Title: FBI run by the Law ‘n Order guy*. I think they’ll either have to show them warts and all, or the show will tank. Badly.

          (*) Dick Wolf. I got really tired of the BDS snark in the W years, and found SVU to be unbearably creepy in the first show, so I’ll let somebody else tell me if it’s a trainwreck.

        3. They’ll always record. But they won’t admit to recordings unless they’re favorable to their own claims.

          The FBI as an organization has tainted its credibility too many times. They’re not even really trying to hide their partisanship or even their incompetence any more.

        4. Especially if everyone starts saying “Recorder, or Fifth, because your record for inventing perjury charges means ANYTHING can lead to charges.”

        5. Yes. Better have the actual transcript at the trial as evidence with the tape as backup for the Judge & Jury. Or … nope, not believable. As the saying goes, one “Oh Shit” wipes the board of the “Good Job”. They’ve had so many of the former that they are forever in the hole & they keep digging; the idiots.

          1. they are forever in the hole & they keep digging

            It is mindful of a certain type, usually female, who is incapable of recognizing she no longer “has the stuff” to play the games she’s accustomed to playing.

            Think Door Into Summer and Belle Darkin’s attempt to vamp Daniel Boone Davis at their meeting in 2000. Or “athletic” men of a certain age who refuse to recognize they no longer have the ability to make the pivot they once used effectively.

    5. The plague seems to be spreading.
      Stupid is contagious unless inoculated against.

  6. But Amanda, that wasn’t real socialism! Real socialism is totally affordable. Just pass the “Affordable Socialism Act”, print some extra money and everything will be fine.*

    *Note: Satire.**

    **I shouldn’t even have to point that out, but these days you never know.

    1. Bernie says that without it being Satire. No other way to pay for his BS.

      1. Without saying it (and maybe without realizing it), Bernie assumes university professors will work for the same amount as McDonald’s servers.
        He never asks “why would they?” or “would I do that?”

        1. Granted, the folks at McDonald’s are less deleterious to national health.

        2. From my (admittedly limited) personal experience with universities, the professors could all vanish and nothing would change. The TAs might notice a difference in the paperwork load; the students might never realize a group of people they almost never saw were no longer there.

          1. What! and make the TAs teach from the same old textbook several years running? (It does seem like profs spend altogether too much time revising texts so that students can’t get by with used.)

            1. Two math classes in my MS program were required, though not tremendously useful. The professor former Taiwan man, reported to treat tardy students like a DI would a lazy recruit. Can’t say for sure; I had the other section. Said professor was powerful in campus politics, but went down in flames when running for city council. (As usual in Silly Valley, not a friendly place for conservatives, and he was very much so.)

              That text was written by the professor and his two brothers. It was nominally out of print, so the professor had copies printed up for the courses. I suspect his take of the proceeds was fairly nice.

              My hearing was starting to check out at the time, so those courses were less than fun. (The main thing I have in common with Beethoven was otosclerosis. Fixed, more or less.)

              1. Lost a bit in my second sentence; the good professor was a retired Colonel in the Taiwan army.

              2. “The professor former Taiwan man, reported to treat tardy students like a DI would a lazy recruit.”

                I’ll admit to some sympathy with this mindset. If I’m teaching a class from 2-3, we’re starting at 2, not at 2:07 when the last of students finally decides he’s done with lunch and comes staggering in the door.

                1. Yeah, agreed on the irritation. I never ran afoul of that, though I missed a couple of classes due to illness. I usually was the guy who’d turn on the lights in the classroom and mainline some coffee before anybody else showed up.

                  I had another instructor who had a reputation for “impossible” courses. He taught 5 different courses, and I took 4 of them. (Should have taken the RF design class, but my crystal ball didn’t tell me I’d want it 10 years later.) His approach was pretty simple; work your ass off and you’d do fine. Slack off and you wouldn’t. I did fine. Sleep was scarce the four years of the program.

                2. My favorite philosophy prof in college dealt with this by, on the first day of Philosophy 101, walking in the door lecturing. Literally as he was walking in the door, he was saying, “The Greeks had a great project: they were going to catalog all the knowledge of the world.” He went over the syllabus at the end of the first day’s class, not at the beginning. Worked very well.

          2. One of the things I liked about attending a *non*-research university is that the professors actually taught their classes. None of this “publish or perish” nonsense; if you were hired, you were expected to teach your classes.

            It does you no good to have your university be on the cutting edge of research if you’re not exposed to any of it because your professor fobs off classes on underpaid interns TAs.

            1. The past, it’s a different country. 🙂 I went to U of Illinois i the early ’70s. At the entry level courses, professors taught the lectures (Chem 10[12], Physics 10]678], Soc 101 and such) for the beginning classes, and TAs would handle quiz and/or lab sessions. As the second year rolled around, we started to get smaller classes by professors, especially in EE and Physics. Advanced courses with labs had a lecture/quiz done by the professor, with a TA/RA in the lab. In the case of the semiconductor processing lab, it was to keep the casualty count reasonable.

              By upper classes, you got some rarefied levels. My device physics course was a senion/grad level, 8 students (I was the only undergrad), and the professor had the patent for the red LED. Met him years later at an HP lecture.

              The university where I got my MS was a Jesuit one that had earlybird classes for working engineers. (7-9AM for most classes). There were a few full professors, but many of the instructors did this as a side job. They did a tiny amount of research, but nothing phenomenal.

              1. Oregon State – Forestry, mid to late ’70’s. Professors wrote most the texts used by (at least west coast) Forestry Programs & taught the classes, depending on the lab, they were monitored or given by both professors & TA’s. Rumor for other Forestry programs that summer labs were ran by professors with TA assistance. Oregon State Forestry didn’t have to have summer labs, the research forest is “next door” (just out of town, although now town is starting to encircle part of it).

                Same 10 years later for Computer Science degree at UofO. Had my on computer at work & home, but believe computer lab was TA ran. Only classes taught by TA’s were those taken during the summer; that is both the math & computer departments.

                Son was at OSU also, from 2007 through 2011 & still professor taught. He got his degree in Chemistry. TA’s for test monitoring, QA sessions, small study sessions, etc.

                1. At OSU that I went to (Oklahoma since we get confused with Ohio all the time.) Most of the classes were professor taught… even when the professor REALLY shouldn’t be teaching. Labs tended to be run by TAs. The only classes I saw there that were taught by TAs were the ones they couldn’t hire enough professors for, typically Freshman Comp. It may have changed (I graduated nearly 10 years ago.)

            2. I’d actually question how much good it does you to have a university on the cutting edge of research even if the professors DO teach the class. Let’s face it, even if your professor has a Nobel prize in Physics, that’s unlikely to matter in Physics 101 when you’re first going over Newton’s three laws of motion. It really only starts to have an effect when you get to the upper division seminars, and even then, only for the most gifted and motivated students.

              1. Agreed. The top flight professors usually taught upper level courses, with very small class sizes. I didn’t go to the Ivory Corn Silo for the research, but for the fact that they were a good engineering school.

                John Bardeen (two Nobels in physics, transistors and superconductors) wasn’t very visible to undergrads. Still, he taught a bit, like my device Physics instructor (Nick Holonyak) who did teach a class; not a seminar, but less formal than most. With 8-10 people in the class, he could pace it well.

            3. When I hear stories like this, I am SO glad I went to a military school. We had a few bad teachers (who were often academics who wore a uniform), but that sort of silliness (TAs, publishing being more important than teaching, etc.) never happened.

    2. print some extra money and everything will be fine.*

      Do keep in mind that it wasn’t all that long ago that a noted leftist blogger suggested – in complete seriousness – that the US should print a 1 Billion Dollar bill, and loan it to itself.

      1. Uh… that’s pretty much how the Treasury works.

        The whole US financial system is based on wishful thinking and pixie dust.

      2. I believe that was one of the ideas floated for how the Obama administration could get around Congress refusing to raise the debt limit: Have the Treasury mint a platinum coin, declare it to be worth $1 trillion, and deposit it in the Treasury’s account with the Fed. Voila, the Treasury has a trillion dollars to spend without borrowing a dime. Of course, every single dollar held by anyone would lose around 10% of its value. That’s probably why they never went with it.

  7. The frustrating part is that all socialists earnestly believe that after the revolution, their worth will be recognized and they’ll be rewarded with the power and prestige they never had before; whereas history shows it’s far more likely they’ll be purged from the Party and stood against the wall with the rest of us wreckers, saboteurs and kulaks. How do you convince somebody their self-image is a fantasy?

  8. Left/Right today is propaganda Left (Communists) and Right (Hitler) this is totally false. Both are total government control, for the people there is no real difference. Also Anarchy, the US system, and others have no place on that line.

    The correct view:
    USSR/Mao/Pol Pot/Hitler —————England—-EU—-USA—— space then the Middle…—– Large space —–Sudan–Afghanistan— other places with no effective government——Anarchy.

    The Left end of the line = total government control (Kings, NAZIs, Communists, etc.) and no freedom
    The Right end of the line = Anarchy (total freedom and No Government also no protections from ANYTHING)

    With the US Government starting off Right of the middle. As little government as the Founders thought they could get away with.
    But since the founding the US Government has been moving to the Left.
    More and More government control.

    It is now so bad that the Democrats have stopped hiding that they are full on Socialists and want FULL Government Control.

    1. I would argue that the EU is just as statist as England if not more so. AFAIK, England doesn’t have rules describing the amount of curvature of a banana…

        1. I really don’t think England would have made them. And technically, they are rules/regulations made up by administrators, not laws.

          1. As it was described to me, England really got the worst of both worlds with the EU.

            English attitude on laws: “We don’t need many, but we’ll enforce the hell out of them”

            Continental attitude: “Laws for everything! But we really don’t care all that much.”

            Together, England got “Laws for everything, and we’ll enforce them too”

  9. I don’t like going to work. No, really. I like my job but I only do it because someone will pay me. Which is cool, because yay, someone will pay me! If I won the lottery I might keep my job but I still wouldn’t do it for free. But there are days. Right? We all have days. Days where you feel trapped and pointless and almost can’t take it anymore.

    And people will have those sorts of days and they’ll blame it on the capitalist rat-race, the “system” that just wants to use you up and spit you out, but you’re stuck because of consumerism and the need to scramble every moment to get groceries and rent.

    And you’d happily give up that scramble and that rat-race and a big chunk of your paycheck to lose the worry. Knowing you’ll be taken care of no matter what, free healthcare and probably the groceries and rent, too, or at least you wouldn’t worry about them. For some magical reason. Because the load will be off your back and you’ll be free. Giving up that big chunk of your paycheck won’t make you poorer or less in control that you are now at all. For magical reasons.

    For magical reasons people will continue doing what they don’t like, but now they’ll like it. Ever since being forced to work a crap job to scrape by turned into being forced to work a crap job so that you can give a larger chunk of what you scraped to others to create the worry free new world. You no longer feel chewed up and spit out! It’s amazing.

    Like magic.

  10. No one ever said the words: “In my socialist utopia I want to be a road construction laborer in New Mexico in the summer.”

    Never happened.

    1. Or as I was told about in a thread on another website discussing Objectivism: “No Objectivist I’ve ever talked to,” said the quoted person, “ever volunteered to clean the toilets.”

      (In fairness, the person who said this was himself an Objectivist and apparently acknowledged the contradiction with reasonable grace.)

      1. Of course not. People who clean toilets should be paid… unless it’s your own toilet.

        But I don’t see the contradiction there. Am I thinking of some other Objectivism where people don’t get paid? Or was he making a claim about charity? In which case I’d say that anyone (including Objectivists) who are helping out as a charitable endeavor are entirely likely to volunteer to clean the toilets… or volunteer to pay someone else to clean the toilets.

        1. There’s always the assumption of a “them” who will be grovelingly grateful to clean toilets in the hope of having a few pennies tossed their way.

          I’ll also note that some of the nastiest toilets I’ve ever encountered were in “secure” office buildings mostly occupied by “professionals” and management types.

          1. … grovelingly grateful to clean toilets

            Thanks. Now I have an image of an Eric Schneiderman operated BDSM toilet cleaning service. I still can’t figure their business plan, however.

            1. 1) concept
              2) add ‘i’ or ‘e’ to product or service name
              3) aquire venture capital
              4) IPO
              5) pocket profits while walking away from smoking remains

        2. “I don’t see the contradiction there. Am I thinking of some other Objectivism where people don’t get paid?”

          If I recall correctly (I may have screwed up the quote), it was less about whether one gets paid or not, and more about the fact that the Objectivists who argue most fervently for its laissez-faire economics never envision themselves as being in the bottom of whatever hierarchy is created by said economics.

          It’s also a remark, I think, on the fact that some jobs are so drudgingly monotonous, laborious or unpleasant in actual execution, but also sufficiently low-skill in requirement, that they will never pay what those forced to do them for lack of an alternative think they’re worth. (It’s arguable that unions force us to overpay custodians or sanitation workers, but I have to admit I can very easily imagine those professions being chronically underpaid in those unions’ absence.)

          1. In a reasonably dynamic and healthy economy the supply/demand balance for labor-with-other-choices would lead to higher pay for unpleasant work.

          2. Interestingly, it seems that in countries with greater central planning, when the economy tanks the first thing that happens is that no-one picks up the trash.

            1. That must explain why Leftist and Democrat protest sites are always filthy dung heaps (literally, in some cases).

            2. Most of the biker gangs are scrupulous about policing their venue when they have events. Though I think they mostly do it to mess with the citizens’ heads…

      2. Not an O-ist, but I have cleaned my own toilet once or twice.

    2. Oh, I dunno. People will do some amazingly stupid stuff if you present it to them the right way. And if they don’t know any better.

      The Soviets managed to use indoctrination and peer pressure to get some real volunteers for construction projects and settlements in Siberia. For a while, anyway.

      1. Well, yes. You can always fool some of the people for some of the time.

        The question is for how long, and what you plan to do when they see through you.

  11. No primitive and idyllic hunter-gatherer ever said the words: “I’m sick of gathering. It sucks. Always scrambling and never getting ahead. And half the time there’s nothing to gather because that somebItch, Ogg, keeps pulling stuff up by the roots, so everything is dead. I wish we had a socialist system where I could quit this rat-race and relax once in a while. I’d give up extra that I gathered for that. Wouldn’t you?”

    Actual conversation: “What? You mean that I’ve got a socialist system already? Well, eff that crap! What I want is to keep Ogg off MY gathering area so that the plants can grow back. There’s a concept… property. I want MY property. Ogg can wreck some other property. I might even plant some plants and water them myself if I can be sure that Ogg, that somebltch, won’t come by and steal it all while I’m not looking. Hey, there’s a new concept… stealing. It’s what that lazy ass somebltch Ogg does.”

    1. New Concept: War. Kill Ogg to keep him from killing my food gathering area.

      1. Well, in all likelihood back then Ogg might have had an accident sooner rather than later.

        Poor Ogg, slipped while were on top of that high cliff. I couldn’t help, I wasn’t close enough.

        Or possibly: “The God of the Forest demands a human sacrifice. I ate the mushrooms and that was what I saw. I saw Ogg’s face! Ogg! Ogg! Oggggg! You’ve been chosen! You will be honored! You will go to the Forest God! Ogggg! (guys, catch him before gets out of the camp).

    2. If You Don’t Work, You Don’t Eat is a law that applies to nearly every organism on the planet. Plants have to grow towards the water and the light. Even bacteria have to work to pump nutrients in and wastes out of the cell wall. The only things on Earth that don’t have to work for their food are those who have someone else to work for them.

      1. Granted it has been a Long time since basic biology as a sophomore in HS. But, “The only things on Earth that don’t have to work for their food are those who have someone else to work for them.” isn’t this category call Parasites?

        Yes, Hillary & Obama’s are good little parasites.

  12. I think it was Winston Churchill who said, “The vice of capitalism is its unequal distribution of blessings. The virtue of socialism is its equal distribution of miseries.”

  13. I recently showed my class photos from the Cambodian killing fields. I think that finished off most of the illusions they might have had about communism on the large scale. (I’m careful to point out that small-scale, voluntary communism for a greater cause [usually a religion] can and does work, but 1) it doesn’t scale up and 2) forcing people to participate doesn’t work.)

    1. Yeah. If you try to live in a commune without working hard, they kick you out.

    2. former co-worker was Cambodian. His Dad was a very good farmer known for better fruit and often first to be able to harvest.
      jealous neighbors pointed Pot’s goons at him in hopes to feed the gator last. Luckily the family escaped. Ended up in California . . . escaped again and made it to Texas.
      Those neighbors didn’t make it anywhere alive.

      1. I’m sorry to hear that. In the Sacramento area, we got a lot of the Vietnamese Boat People—they’d process them in San Francisco and ship ’em upriver where the cost of living was much cheaper. We’ve got a Little Saigon area (that I never knew about until I was an adult, and yes, it has a Pho King restaurant) and most of the strawberry farms around have Vietnamese names—but a lot of the kids of the folk who came over are dentists. Which is a highly-skilled, low-guild* profession that is very, very portable—you can either use tools that can be shoved in a pocket, or people don’t expect you to have your own.

        *Healthcare has an unacknowledged guild going, or why would there be so few open slots for a profession that we’re told (and shown) is in such high demand?

        1. New Orleans got a lot of boat folk as well, The chain there is Pho Bang, and they are also in DFW with a Pho Bang in Garland.
          I was told that the Little Saigon in New Orleans East looked its normal self within 6 months after Katrina

          1. “Pho Bang” is better than the misspelled name on a pink massage parlor (yes, really) on Guam: Ichibang.
            Nope, not going to get a massage there. Nope, ain’t no way.

            (And the bit about “looked its normal self” could be a compliment or not. Depending on what it looked like before Katrina. Though I’m guessing it was intended as a compliment.)

            1. NOEast was never a scenic place, but other than some downed trees, it looked much like it had before a one of the middle-class areas of NOLA.

        2. Arkansas got more than its fair share of boat people; after most other states quit accepting them, they sent them to Blytheville and then turned them loose into the local population.

          Interestingly, there are a *lot* of Vietnamese names in the phone book… but there are no Little Saigons anywhere, no Viet activists, nothing. They apparently had no problem becoming a fully integrated part of the local population.

          I think when the Mexicans started arriving a couple of decades ago, they were probably confused by all of the short, brown-skinned people who couldn’t speak intelligible Spanish…

          1. The Little Saigon area is mostly where you get the Vietnamese restaurants and groceries; I don’t know how unintegrated it is because most of Sacramento is heterogenous. (There was a great “dot map” study done several years back that was census-based one color per household; it’s no longer publicly available, but Sacramento was very blended, especially when compared with someplace like Chicago. South Sacramento was definitely more east Asian than other areas, but it was diffuse rather than concentrated.)

        3. The south SF bay area got a lot of Hmong refugees; not sure if Viet Nam or Cambodian. For some reason, a lot of the doughnut shops in San Jose were owned by Hmong.

          On the medical guild, the doctor at a clinic I went to quit the area in frustration. She had an OB/Gyn specialty, but could not get privileges at the only hospital in the county.

          $SPOUSE has noted that there are a lot of new dental practices in the local city. We’re also getting more Cal-Exit escapees. I’m pretty sure these are the middle and lower-middle class people who had just enough assets to get the hell out. Kind of like what we (and a boatload of others) did in the early Oughts. Gray Davis tried to be as bad as Moonbeam, but got recalled before he could finish the job. Apparently, most of the newcomers are staying in the city, but we’re starting to see a trickle out here.. We’ll see how Real Winters(tm) suit the newbies.

          1. and a lot of them discover that the $1200-$1400/mo they were paying for an apartment/house gets them a heck of a lot nicer place elsewhere.

            1. Even some of the oddball properties are selling around here. Two places on the market for a long time got good-match buyers; one a couple willing to fix it up, and the other a single person with country background.
              (The fixer took 12 years on-and-off selling, with renters ranging from good to top-of-the-evening-news horrible, while the other took a year and a half; quirky property, but it’s a good fit for the buyer.)

              Now, if the trainwreck of an 80 acre miniranch would sell. I’m not holding my breath for that.

      2. “former co-worker was Cambodian. His Dad was a very good farmer known for better fruit and often first to be able to harvest…. Luckily the family escaped.”
        Back in the early nineties I was reading a magazine at some office (doctor or dentist or similar), and encountered an article on investing.
        A reporter had interviewed a number of experts on how they would invest a windfall of about $10,000. Along with the usual pablum on stocks and houses etc, the one that stuck with me was the guy who said, “I would find a recent immigrant from southeast Asia, give it to him, and tell him to do whatever he wanted.”

        1. My first adult job was in construction. It was a medical center and we would work all week long hanging drywall (I got lucky and started the week after they finished hanging the lead lined drywall for x-ray rooms), then come friday at 4pm a crew of Vietnamese came in and floated it out, the sanders were leaving when we walked in Monday morning having come in a 2am to finish it out)
          I quit the carpenter/construction bit and worked as a bicycle mechanic.
          The owner of the drywall mudding company I later encountered buying a bicycle for his son. Son was still in ‘Nam, being held from immigrating by the commies. Several years and bicycles boxed to ship down the road, the dad finally bribed the right people enough money, the kid finally got here, a bit shy and very little stumbling english. His dad acted as translator as they bought a bike and gear so the son could race here in the USA, my boss offered him a place on the team the shop sponsored while ringing up the sale. Within 6 months he had very good english, a new Ford truck (his dad got one as well, no longer needing to save up for bribes) his own business doing plaster, dry wall and mudding, and I built the most expensive set of wheels I did as a pro mechanic for him ($800 for rims, hubs, spokes and nipples in 1987 dollars) to go on the custom frame he was having built.

    3. It’s probably not an accident that all the communist systems in the world have lots of glorious posters hung around places of triumphant and muscled laborers lifted up as heroes of the land. It’d be even harder to force people to work if you didn’t have a bunch of triumphant posters hung about.

      Hey, work makes you free.

    4. Also 3) it often fails miserably (see; Pilgrims) and 4) You can usually count on its children getting the hell out as soon as they can

      1. #4 – which is why all socialist countries build walls to keep their people in.

  14. Hillary wouldn’t know a real capitalist if one bit her on her big fat bum.
    What she identifies with is better known as a crony capitalist, or more appropriately, robber baron. Baroness in her case. She has always used the advantage of her position or that of her associates to put herself above the petty laws that govern we the common folk.
    As for this Manning person, there’s a name for the sort of country it wants us to turn into, that would be Venezuela.

    1. Shrillary NEEDS cronyism, desperately. She has no skills other than malfeasance, she’s too long in the tooth to be turning tricks, and she has expensive (if bad) taste.

      1. Marrying (and staying with) Bill is the only smart decision Hillary has ever made. Otherwise, she’d just be that bitter womyn’s studies prof that nobody really likes.

  15. No prisons, no cops, huh? Leaves individuals only two choices: go armed continuously, preferably in groups — or hope you can afford the vigorish your local mob boss charges for “protection”.

    1. You think that first option will be allowable? Will have forbidden even heavy stones before they can go against police and prison unions and industry.

      1. Yep. Before they do away with the prisons and the cops, they will outlaw guns. Then, once they are confident they have disarmed the public, they will do the rest — except they won’t. By then they will need their gulags, etc.

    2. The other possibility – the goblins mostly end up righteously killed in the first few weeks, dropping crime like a stone (hey, no cops/prisons means nobody to arrest citizens for defending themselves and others)

        1. Not so brief – when there are NO guns, police, or prisons, bad actors seem to appear out of the woodwork at some random rate. When there are NO borders, “grass is greener” syndrome (which is worse for losers than it is for workers) dictates a continuing influx of bad actors.
          So I suspect in this scenario, the “period of adjustment” ends when there’s a dynamic balance between bad actors and those willing to defend with force, i.e. when the anarchy fails & is replaced by whatever authority arises. That’s “brief” only for certain, rather extended, values of brief.

  16. One encouraging thought- ponder what happens when a organization gets negative press for being political.
    When it’s a “Rightwing” company that’s the target of SJW’s, you will get a line around the block- witness Chic-Fil-A.
    But if it’s a company trumpeting it’s Social Justice virtues, it’s really not there for them. People don’t turn out, and the SJW brigade doesn’t make up for the business lost. “Get woke, go broke” is a thing. Even their “grassroots” doesn’t really have that much of a turnout- witness the protestors at the NRA convention.
    I suspect the numbers supporting the Left are far lower than people suppose. They’ve been running the propaganda and vote fraud machine at the redline with all stops pulled, and they still can’t gin up enough votes.

    1. Hence why so big on both the dehumanizing of opponents and importation of a new people.

    2. Such is the path that the very appropriately named Dick’s Sporting Goods chain seems to have taken. Their owners have taken an actively anti gun stance, stripping their shelves of evil assault weapons (whatever than nebulous term might mean), refusing to sell long arms to legal buyers under 21, and apparently funding lobbyists to promote gun control legislation. All within their rights, except perhaps for the self imposed age limit. Feels a lot like refusing to bake a cake for a gay wedding, and we all know how actively evil that is.
      Several gun makers have announced that they would no longer allow their wares to be sold through Dick’s. I believe the National Shooting Sports Federation has rescinded their membership. And I suspect a whole bunch of gun owners have chosen to become former customers.
      Smacks of suicide by virtue signaling to me.

      1. “Feels a lot like refusing to bake a cake for a gay wedding, and we all know how actively evil that is.”

        Actually, it’s even less defensible. The bakers that have gotten in trouble have made it clear that they would have no problem with selling a standard cake off-the-rack (so to speak). What they didn’t want to do was engage in one-off creative craftsmanship to celebrate something of which they disapprove. A Black baker taking the same position vis a vis a Klan celebration would be totally ignored by the Establishment Left. And every time I have brought up that possibility the Liberal I’ve been talking to has gone blank-eyed and mumbly.

        Dicks proposes to decline to sell something they have no hand in creating to persons who may legally purchase such an item. They have no legal leg to stand on.

        I expect a fairly successful lawsuit, or a quick back-down.

        1. And, of course, there’s always the only religion that actually has freedom to practice, for obvious reasons. Incentives Matter, as Instapundit says.

      2. and apparently funding lobbyists to promote gun control legislation.

        It’s been noted that this is a practical business decision on the part of Dick’s. Since they’re not going to allow the sales of certain weapon types anymore, it makes financial sense to also not allow their competition the right to sell those kinds of weapons, either.

        Or in other words, they’re being pretty ruthless about the whole thing. Fortunately, it appears that they badly misread the prevailing winds, and are now about to get tripped up in a big way.

        1. Or in other words, they’re being pretty ruthless Dick’s about the whole thing.

        2. The CEO (President? Can’t recall) apparently acknowledged that the program would cost the company revenues.

          Can you say, “Shareholder suit”? I knew you could.

          Plaintiff, to witness, “You acknowledge you foresaw this action would damage stockholder equity in the enterprise yet you undertook it in spite of that?”

          1. RES, the counter argument has already hit Ruger.

            “Shareholders — apparently including large institutional investors — sided with advocates who included nuns from the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary in Marylhurst, Ore., to back the proposal. Ruger’s largest shareholder is money management firm BlackRock; Vanguard is also a large investor in the company.

            “We believe the board has a responsibility to implement policies and practices that will safeguard the lives of its customers and, more broadly, society,” said Sister Judy Byron. “Too many lives have been lost to gun violence for the manufacturers of these products to wash their hands of their responsibility in these events.”

              1. Corporations are not churches. Their fiduciary duty is to maximize shareholder returns within the strictures of the laws. Advocating for laws abridging Constitutionally recognized rights in order to advance societal welfare is not a legitimate activity and any shareholder, no matter how minor, has the right to sue for malfeasance.

                Judges being what they are, however, this path might not lead where we want to go, at least not until Trump has another two years of judicial appointments.

    3. Starbucks has officially opened its restrooms to all comers. This might be fun, at least for the schadenfreude.

      1. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a Starbucks, though I sure hear a lot about them on the web. There’s probably at least one at the capitol, though I’d bet it’s in one of the yuppie areas I try to avoid.

        Arkansas state law says if a business is “open to the public”, it has to provide a restroom. It doesn’t restrict availability to paying customers. I imagine the Arkansas Starbucks employees sitting through abasement and three-minutes-groveling will be somewhat bemused…

        Interestingly, state/county/city offices don’t have to have public restrooms…

        1. Eh, their tea lattes are decent enough, if a bit sweet for my tastes. Their cookies are tasty, if overpriced.

    4. “But if it’s a company trumpeting it’s Social Justice virtues, it’s really not there for them”
      The volume of the Left is loud, but that’s because they always amp up to eleven.
      Their numbers are much lower, as polls have shown for many years. That may be changing now because of decades of indoctrination, but the useful idiots (aka rank and file, but they are pacifists* so you can’t use that) still can’t be bothered to come out in numbers unless organized and / or paid (plenty of stories in that vein lately).
      Case in point with prediction: the LDS Church just announced it will terminate its 100+ years’ relationship with the BSA at the end of December 2019.
      Any bets on whether the LGBT / Feminists will make up the very substantial lost money and membership?

      *actually not pacifist at all, as OWS, Antifa and the university thugs demonstrate; just anti-US-military.

      1. Even the indoctrination will probably backfire. The old avant-garde has become garde, and it is the Left that’s now the home of self-righteous anti-fun scolds and killjoys. If they did the Church Lady today, she’d be a woke feminist harpy who’s would blame everything on “PATRIARCHY!” instead of Satan. They’d be the ones trying to stop Kevin Bacon in “Footloose”, because of cultural appropriation and a lack of trans inclusion.

        It’s funny- we’re the new rock-n-roll, the new hip radical outsiders, the new rebels.

        1. The old avant-garde has become rear-garde, which is why they constantly make such asses of themselves.

      2. “Case in point with prediction: the LDS Church just announced it will terminate its 100+ years’ relationship with the BSA at the end of December 2019.”

        Been coming for a long time. Should have happened when Scouting started allowing women to participate in leadership rolls other than cub den leader & participate in outings. Which had to happen. Lot of units couldn’t function without women in Scouter positions; outings/summer camp cancellations occurred.

        Don’t know about other areas, but here in the west (not LDS center Utah) LDS units have had a much more impact on Council & District events & decisions based on youth registration instead of actual participation. They register every boy between ages 7 & 18 in appropriate scouting program regardless of whether the kid actually participates. It is now a numbers game. The LDS Units have a larger say in scouting politics than their actual participation percentages should have allowed. Very obvious when you see the number of units & scouts left after LDS units go home Saturday night from Council or District sponsored events.

        As far as girls being added into Scout Troops. They are not. They are being allowed to get Eagle. Girls have to form their own units. Yes, some existing units are going to partner with new girl units (with leaders co-registering for both units) BSA & GSA units have been doing this forever (they did when I was in GSA & I’m 60+); FWIW Girl Scouts are missing the boat if they don’t encourage their units to co-register as Scouting BSA, opens all the existing Scout camps without cost to the GSA.

        Cubs are allowing girls into the same pack, but pack is a gathering for awarding den achievements as a family, little socialization. What Pack socialization occurring, it is a family event so the girls have always been there. Dens are to be kept separate. Reality check. Yes, there may be some partnering there too. Again GSA should encourage co-registration.

        Venturing Scouting is the only program that is truly coed. Scouting BSA did that to try to retain young men 18 to 21 in the program. More successful for ages 14 – 17. The older, both genders, either are working, advanced education (whether trade craft or college or services), or both, marriage/family & working, which leaves little time to participate (based on experience with a couple of units).

        Not to mention that at 18+ I really wanted (sarcasm, just to be clear) to be told that within the college groups I joined I was a “youth” VS “leader” because I wasn’t 21+. Yea, that would have gone over good (NOT!!!). FWIW I met my spouse of 40 years at one of those groups & he is 5 years older than me (I was 18, he was 22; well technically I was 2 or 3 weeks short of 18, but who cares, other than dorm who wouldn’t give me the outdoor key until I was 18).

        Not involved in Scouting BSA program now. But was well immersed for 15 years from Unit to Council level, have read the releases, & talked to those still involved.

  17. How timely! Last night my mother and I were telling about our experiences in East Berlin to my youngest brother and his wife to be. Youngest brother was born in East Berlin, so the experiences we had were something he doesn’t remember (being only an infant, then toddler then.)

    Sis-in-law to be was shocked at having to line up for ‘treats’ like bananas, or simple vanilla flavored ice cream… and when you ran out, that was it. Or buying a pot even if it had no lid, because maybe next time, you’d be lucky and get A lid that might not fit exactly, but would do the job sort of okay.

    We haven’t told her the story of the time someone nearly got himself disappeared because he made the mistake of bitching at foreign diplomats – something the local authorities felt was not acceptable.

    1. There’s a joke that I’m told originated in Poland;

      An old man is waiting on line to buy meat, when the mean runs out. He snatches off his hat and throws it to the ground, shouting “This system is crazy! It stinks! I am a Part Member! I am a Veteran! All my life I have labored for Socialism! And they run out of meat!”

      A man in a trench coat comes out of the crowd, throws and arm around the old man’s shoulders, and says, “Comrade, Comrade, don’t carry on so! You know what they would have dome in the old days!” And he mimes putting a gun to his head and pulling the trigger.

      The old man totters home and collapses on the kitchen chair.

      “What happened?”, asks his wife. “Were they out of meat?”

      “Worse!”, says the old man. “They’re out of bullets!”

    2. Lids that are too large work just fine.

      particularly if you are trying to suffocate a fire.

      1. Yes, however, sometimes the lids were just as likely as to be too small for any of the pots; perhaps we had missed the pot that it was meant to go to.

        I rather liked the kitchen of that East Berlin apartment. It had sliding glass windows and wasn’t open-plan to the dining room (had those doors that split in half, so you could keep toddlers out of harms way but still yell at them to stop mischief if needed.)

  18. When I was growing up in the 70s, we lived in Germany twice for a year (my dad was a visiting professor). One of the things we did was go into East Germany to visit relatives (my grandfather was born in an area that later became part of the GDR; his family emigrated to the US in the 20s). I remember it being very grim there. Dirty, polluted, everything was shabby and worn down. The fear and hopelessness were palpable – even us kids could feel it. Our relatives welcomed us warmly and gave us the best they had to give, though there was little available and the quality of what was available was very poor. Once, they served us rice, just plain rice, because that was all they had. (We were deeply moved by their generosity, and returned it as best we could with regular care packages from the U.S.) We stayed at a nearby hotel (it would have caused our relatives too many problems with the police if we stayed with them, even if there was room, three generations crammed into a tiny apartment). I remember a pile of potatoes on the ground next to a pile of coal. The brewery in town dumped its raw waste into the stream that flowed through the town.

    Some things I didn’t know about at the time but my dad told us about recently: After they had fed us for a few days out of their own rations, he decided to treat them to a nice dinner. He went to the store and bought a roast, not huge but big enough for a good-sized family dinner (3kg? or maybe 3 pounds). When he brought it to our relatives, they told him he’d bought the town’s allotment of meat for the week. When my dad was telling us this, someone asked why the store had sold it to him. It was because he had West German marks. Part of the requirements for being given permission to enter the country was we had to promise to spend 15 West German marks a day, because the GDR was desperate for cash.

    Also, one of these families had a small daughter. The grandfather’s job was to go every day to the store and stand in line for a couple of hours to buy her a bottle of rhubarb juice, so she could get some vitamins.

    We visited an elderly relative in Chemnitz (known at the time as Karl-Marx-Stadt). The toilet for her whole apartment building was on the ground floor, a hole in a wooden seat.

    Leaving the country, we had to wait for hours while soldiers inspected every nook and cranny of our car to make sure we weren’t smuggling anyone out. Even us young kids knew enough to be terrified of what would happen if the soldiers decided we were doing something wrong.

    It was awful. The poverty, the fear, the grim dirty run-down everything, the lack of hope.

    We went back earlier this spring to revisit some places we went before, including our relatives in the east. I hadn’t been back since 1979, and the difference was astounding. I know Germany has its problems, but the difference between the communist days and now just blew me away. Everything is so much cleaner. Decades of coal soot is being scrubbed from the buildings. At one relative’s, I assumed the grandparents, parents, and child were all living in the same small apartment, but they weren’t – it belonged to just the grandparents. Bright, clean, cheery, and a beautiful bathroom. That awful hotel where we stayed has been torn down and paved over – we stood on the site and celebrated its demise. The son – who participated in the protests that helped bring down the Iron Curtain – showed off his own beautiful house to us, that he bought and restored and remodelled. He couldn’t have even dreamed of such a thing back in the communist days. The meals our relatives served were abundant and delicious, the best we had during our trip. The church where many of my ancestors worshipped has been restored, and at least in these small towns, the church is a large part of life. People aren’t afraid to say what they think.

    Black and white. Before and after. Anyone seeing the difference would have to be blind or willfully stupid or deliberately lying to say things are just as good or better under communism (or really, any kind of statism) as under a free system.

    1. Thank you so much for sharing the story of how much it has changed. I haven’t been back since we left – just 6 months before the Berlin Wall came down. I wish I could visit, and see the changes; it sounds so wonderful, but I’m worried with the Islamic invader ‘refugee’ problem there. I don’t know if I will be able to find the places where I lived though; from what we were told, one of the first things that happened was most of the street names were changed.

    2. Yes. Though you could still somewhat tell when you went from West to East in the late-90s, it was more Germany and less East Germany. Freedom is a beautiful thing.

      Where I remember the … grimness was Bosnia. Decades of soviet influence, hammered by war.

  19. Side note: it will be interesting to see if Manning actually manages to win the Maryland primary or not. This is unlikely–last poll put Manning at less than 1/5 of the vote.

    1. Esoteric CD on twitter, one of the guys who is behind Decision Desk, says that he is from Maryland and that Manning has no chance.

      My takeaway is that Manning is surrounded by people who do not have his best interests at heart, he isn’t going to stabilize his life outside of the public eye, and suicide is increasingly probable. It’d be better for him to lose in the primary than lose in the general.

      1. Manning is just another Leftist prop who got uppity, and is going to get smacked down- kind of like what’shername, the gal who tried to make a career out of her son dying in Iraq. The one who got all sorts of attention until she thought she was one of the elite, at which point she ran against Nan Pelosi and got smacked right down.

      2. and suicide is increasingly probable.

        This is my guess. From what I’ve heard, nearly everyone who has enough gender issues that they seriously contemplate sex change surgery is a huge suicide risk (and that’s regardless of whether or not they actually get the surgery). He seems pretty messed up, and needs serious help, which I’m quite confident he’s not getting.

          1. Of course. They’ve pinned their hopes on this procedure “solving their problem”…. and then it doesn’t.

      3. It’s unchristian of me, but in the case of Traitor Manning, I have to admit that I really don’t care if s/he manages to stabilize her/his life or not.

        1. I’m wondering what kind of security he has, and who is paying for it, that he continues to stay alive.

          It takes serious money to buy that kind of security; far more than an ex-con traitor is likely to earn.

  20. “forcing me to support Trump.”

    I’m not quite THERE, yet, but far too many people are forcing me to DEFEND the man and that seems strange to me.

    Of course, my favorite fallback quote of the lefties is “It seems this is the end of the road for Trump.” They’ve been saying this since he announced back in (three years? THREE YEARS NOW?) 2015.

    What they don’t seem to realize is that Donny “Two Scoops of Ice Cream” T is driving a bulldozer. Whenever he reaches the end of the road, he drops the blade, shifts down a couple of gears and he MAKES SOME MORE FRICKIN’ ROAD!

    Gonna be a long two and a half to six and a half years. Fun, but long.

    And Amanda, thanks for these posts, but I do have a tiny complaint. A few weeks ago you gave us the heads-up on “Dear Madam President”. I followed and apparently got farther in the free preview than you did.

    I came across an absolute gem of a claim by this former campaign worker:

    “She came into this race with some reluctance. More than anyone would have imagined.”

    I actually lost my ability to even for a while after reading that one.

    The woman who wore a five figure outfit while lecturing about income inequality. The former senator who turned the DNC into a (blatantly illegal) fund raising arm of her campaign. The incompetent former SecState who laughed off the Nevada Dem Convention.

    Is it possible to have NEGATIVE reluctance? Like, a psychotic level of drive and mono-mania? ‘Cause that’s the level of reluctance I imagine for HRC.

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. The two sweetest words in the English language: Not Hillary.

    1. I support Trump is only because he has all the right enemies.

      “But he’s a womanizer!”

      So was Saint Kennedy.

      “He’s playing brinksmanship with North Korea!”

      And it seems to be working, which is more than can be said for anything anyone else has tried since the cease-fire.

      “He’s a racist!”

      No proof that I can see. He has a garbage mouth. That ain’t the same thing.

      And most importantly – and Gods! but the Lefties hate my bringing this up – He isn’t stupid enough to enrage the grassroots support of his opponent and then tell his own supporters he’s got it in the bag (leaving them with the impression that it doesn’t matter if they don’t get out an vote).

      Shrillary ran one of the dumbest campaigns I have ever seen, and I dimly recall the Campaign Jimmy Carter ran against Ford, in which he almost managed to lose to the man who pardoned Nixon.

      1. > garbage mouth

        There are mp3s of the Oval Office tapes from the Johnson, Nixon, and Ford administrations at archive.org. All of them had a bad case of potty mouth, but LBJ in particular seemed to work hard at it…

        1. The Nixon Presidential Library makes a point of bringing this up. It points out that the secret tapes were the first time that many Americans became aware that the occupants of the White House frequently used coarse language. Of course, the Library also suggests that this is one of the reasons why Nixon’s popularity took a hit from the release of the tapes.


          I will note, though, that the documentary “Last Days in Vietnam” states that President Ford rarely used such language even when out of the public eye.

          1. “Of course, the Library also suggests that this is one of the reasons why Nixon’s popularity took a hit from the release of the tapes.”
            Don’t roll your eyes so hard, they will fall out.
            I was in college at the time, and everyone was talking about the tapes.
            Yes, Nixon was certain to be impeached because he lost the support of the “Moral Majority” Republican base that had re-elected him in a landslide, because people hate being played for suckers on the emotional, spiritual front.
            Trump has “staying power” because nobody was under any illusions about his character, whereas Nixon always kept up a front of respectability.

            1. Bullshit.

              Nixon used language common to boardrooms across the country. All the maiden auntery about the tapes was part and parcel of the Lft’s propaganda effort to deep six him. Had Nixon actually had any balls, he would have erased the damned tapes, said “my tapes are no different from Lyndon’s …. or FDR’s wire recordings. They were for my personal reference, and I have erased them. Blow me.”

              But Nixon was a proto-RINO. Unlike Trump….or Reagan, for that matter….he didn’t have the balls to say “come after me for doing what the last two Democrats in the White House did and I’ll expose the pair of them as the swine they were”

              I never liked the man. I liked McGovern considerably LESS, however.

              1. Nixon was definitely unlikeable. But… it’s worth reading his books; “Six Crises”, “The White House Years”, “The Real War”, etc.

                Nixon was sharp. He was motivated. He loved America, hated Communism, and devoted most of his Presidency to unsticking us from the Vietnam tar baby. He was a dang good writer, too.

                But… from his own words in his own books, he was so absolutely clueless about dealing with people that he turned practically everyone he ever dealt with into an enemy, eventually. He felt the whole world revolved around Richard M. Nixon, and he didn’t *quite* require that the people he worked for approach on hands and knees and bang their heads on the floor, but it’s obvious he thought that would have been appropriate. He wasn’t hypocritical about it; that’s how he interacted with Eisenhower when he was VP, and it squicked Eisenhower, who was pretty much a walking ego himself.

                Besides giving me a new slant on modern history – really, how many people ever bothered to read Nixon’s accounts of it? – his books gave me hope, because I realized there was someone who was worse than I am at dealing with people, who had nevertheless managed to have a successful career. If there had been a diagnosis of “autism spectrum disorder” in his day, he would have been the poster child.

                I’d be reading his account of this or that, and I’m going, “Oh, Dickie, no, not again…”

        1. Yeah, I get called a Racist too, even though most of the people immigrating illegally are the same ethnicity I am.
          Um…. Maybe illegal is a race.

        2. C’mon! “Law & Order” has been a recognized code phrase for racism since Nixon ran on it in 1968.

          Apparently the only reason for ever passing a law is so Whitey can keep the colored man down. And the only thing worse than passing a law is enforcing a law.

    2. Oh, I don’t know–if she thought for even one second, “maybe this is a bad idea and I should reconsider,” that would be more reluctance than anyone I know would imagine.

      1. I think she was very reluctant. She would have gladly accepted the position if offered it, but having to ask for it was beneath her. She only ran because they assured her the race was fixed, she would have to give only the minimal number of speeches and public appearances, audiences would be carefully controlled and it was necessary to show some feigned respect for the will of the People. even if actually heeding that will was never going to be expected of her.

        1. I recently had cause to look up some stuff about the 2008 election. Even the complicit media were reporting on Hillary’s outrage at losing the nomination…

          1. Remember the PUMAs (Party Unity My Ass). I’m sure that one of the conditions Hilary demanded in order to not blow one of the easiest elections of all time was complete control of the DNC during the Obama administration so she would be guaranteed the nomination. That, and a high ranking position in the administration (I’m sure that SecState was a compromise since not even Barry is dumb enough to put Hillary one heartbeat away from the White House.)

    3. Like with me and Bush jr. I thought most of his moves were suboptimal (to say the least), but the reactions were just insane.

  21. Speaking of Communist, does the aged and decrepit current leadership of the Democratic party remind anyone here of the geriatric nature of the early 80’s Politburo?

    1. As opposed to Democratic congressional leadership, the DNC leadership is a bit younger. To compensate, they’re even further left than those congressional leaders.

      1. Sighted last week:
        Democratic National Committee vice-chair Keith Ellison, celebrating Cinco de Mayo while wearing a T-shirt bearing the quote, in Spanish, “I don’t believe in borders.”

  22. I mentioned here before that I now follow Bernie Sanders on Facebook, and I’ve told how he is shocked that minimum-wage workers can’t afford two-bedroom apartments. Here’s another gem from Sanders:

    He repeatedly says that the minimum wage should be $15/hour — “a living wage”, and he posted a video to explain how this would work. The video featured a condescending guy explaining that, yes, he thinks that “burger-flippers” should be paid $15/hour, and that he has heard complaints that that is the same amount that Emergency Medical Technicians make. His response? He likes both burger-flippers and EMTs! Under his proposal, EMTs won’t be paid less, but the pie will be “made bigger”, so that burger-flippers can be paid more!

    And the video stops here. Raising the minimum wage to $15/hour will make the pie bigger, end of argument.

    Of course, the EMTs weren’t worried about their pay being cut — they were worried about their job now being suddenly a minimum wage job. Worse, though, were the Facebook comments that Bernie’s post received. Bernie-supporter after Bernie-supporter posted about how awful EMTs were for expecting to be paid $15/hour! (Aren’t they claiming that $15/hour should be the minimum wage?) Why, they said, EMTs are paid even if they are just waiting for an emergency call — this is intolerable!

    For my part, I posted that Bernie Sanders wasn’t supporting American workers enough, and that he should make the minimum wage $10,000/hour. Make the pie HUGE!

    I was suddenly not very popular.

    1. Well guess what. I couldn’t afford my own apartment by myself on minimum wage either. Neither could my sisters, or my mom, or any other generation that started out earning minimum wage. Why do you think everyone learns to despise roommates? That is why you do what you can to better yourself so you can afford that apartment or house by yourself. Or you form a legal partnership so you together can build your life style.

      I don’t care if minimum wage is $5, 10, 15, or 20. You still won’t be able to afford that apartment without a roommate or 2 or 3.

      1. Indeed. I think Bernie is so entitled that he can’t imagine living without two bedrooms all to himself. Which makes his claim that he represents ordinary people even more nonsensical.

      2. When you consider the degree to which Socialist governments restrict the housing stock through regulation, price suppression and other means …

    2. Have these folks ever talked to ems? In cities you are as often stacked up with held calls as you are slow. And even if you are not you’re going from post to post to manage coverage levels (smaller towns and cities this is true but also fewer personnel). And you have a glut of people for A. the cachet, and B. It is necessary for Muni fire jobs even if non transport. And those can be quite lucrative. As to the resulting “well they should be paid more” cries that that isn’t a reason to not change wage, what do you think every other job will do. You’ll either lose job, lose people, or increase costs. After the first wave of beneficiaries the remainder will be paying more.

    3. By saying this, Bernie and the Dems alienate yet another group of old time Democratic Party allies- in this case the firemen and EMS workers, in order to gain votes they pretty much already have.
      They’ve already worked hard to alienate the cops, they’re actively working to run off the old blue collar workers, and next up will probably be the Teamsters and SEIU. Heck, I wouldn’t be surprised if they start attacking the teachers in a few years.
      Turn Left and die indeed.

  23. [Clinton]’s a capitalist but there should be regulation and accountability.

    That reminds me of the claim attributed to Henry Ford, “The customer can get this car in any color he wants, so long as it’s black.”

    1. He, at least, knew they could buy something else. So he kept them cheap. Hillary would have doubled the price at the same press conference. And Bernie would have wanted to know why they wanted cars in the first place.

  24. Socialism is an emotional argument. It plays upon our urges to try and do the right thing, and to treat people well and do all the things we were taught to do by Sesame Street (or our parents). It simplifies a complex world, by creating easy metrics for “good” and “evil.”

    Which is why I keep saying that socialism is pretty much a religion.

    (In a way, it is-it’s a Gnostic heresy by a denationalized Jew.)

    1. Socialism and communism are without doubt religions. All those group rituals.

  25. part of me wants to see Chelsea make it through the primaries and get smashed in the general, but part of me wants to see her win and then not be able to sit on any useful committees because she can’t hold a security clearance

    1. An interesting point I saw brought up elsewhere is that Chelsea remains technically on active duty pending appeal, which means actively campaigning for office could result in DOD disciplinary action or legal problems, if anybody at DOD decides it is worthwhile.

        1. He’s sentenced to a DD, but the entire sentence is being appealed, so he’s still Active Duty, just in an unpaid leave status.

    2. Since when has that happened to politicians. Look at the IC we had previously. Couple waving big red (hammer and sickle) flags

    3. As we’re seeing, the standards on who gets a security clearance are different for Democrats.

    4. I believe that Senators and Congressmen automatically have security clearances by virtue of their position. Otherwise there’d be a huge separation of powers issue with the Legislative Branch having to essentially beg the Executive Branch for the ability to oversight the use of appropriated funds.

      1. I think that the security clearances (for higher levels) are only for relevant committees and it is likely the ability to get such clearances are a prerequisite of a) membership and, certainly, b) committee leadership. Perhaps also applies to party leadership in legislature.

        Would you grant Maxine Waters a high-level security clearance? Heck, there’s probably 25% of each party’s congressional membership I wouldn’t entrust with a drivers’ license.

      2. as far as i understand, you have to be able to get a higher clearance in order to get positions on several Select Comittees.

  26. Semantic whoredom seems unduly generous as whores need to provide satisfaction to their customers. I suspect “Schneidermanization” more accurately describes the relationship between the Left and language.

    The Semantic Whoredom of the Left
    By Sarah Hoyt
    n another land, a long, long time ago, I was a student of languages. It was also there that I came across the American left’s obsession with corrupting the language.

    In my last year in college, I had American Literature taught by a Fullbright exchange professor. I will never forget the moment the poor man – talking to a class of 36, all women as such classes often are – let slip the innocent word “him” to mean an indeterminate gender. He paused, went white, his eyes widened, and he said, “I mean, I mean, he or she.”

    Meanwhile, the class of 36 was staring at him in puzzlement. It took us a while to take it all apart and realize he thought we’d be offended by the use of “he” to mean someone generic, of indeterminate gender.

    I think we patted him kindly on the shoulder and told him that no, really, we weren’t offended. The usage was the same in Portuguese and we’d been told it was the same in most Indo-European languages. And who on Earth would get offended over semantics? The language was the language. It meant nothing about us personally.

    This was of course before I married, came to the US and found that for the American woman circa 1985 the language was not just personal, it was personally offensive.

    I remember standing in horror underneath a bookstore section proudly labeled Herstory. …

    1. Hey, a section labled ‘Herstory’ would be quite useful….as a way of distinguishing between actual historical scholarship and utter bilge.

    2. Ran across a person “correcting” the meaning of werewolf from “man wolf” to “person wolf.”

      Fortunately in a venue where I could point out that “werewolf” is masculine — the feminine would be “wifwolf” and the gender neutral “manwolf.”

      Did not point out that she thought “person” was only possible meaning of “man” so it was unnecessary to “correct” it.

  27. Just in case some haven’t noticed this returning feature:

    Book Plug Friday: Meet Pam Uphoff
    By Sarah Hoyt and Charlie Martin
    [Yes, BPF is coming suspiciously close to being Book Plug Saturday this week. Give us a break, we’re still being retrained. — Charlie]

    PJM: So, you’re one of the new independent writer/publishers, making it out there, in the new world of selling stories directly to the public.

    Well . . . not actually that new. My first Indie publication was in 2011, so I have almost seven years of experience.

    PJM: Tell us how you came to publish indie? Was it a choice? Did you ever do it traditionally? Do you also traditionally publish?

    I tried the traditional route, and collected the traditional rejection slips that I understand are a requirement to call oneself a writer.

    Then Amazon started the Kindle Direct Publishing, and I put up a novella through some friends’ start-up small press. Then I braced myself and put up a novel by myself . . . and another . . . And here I am, six and a half years later with fifty-four titles up. …

  28. … what America needs is a more intense appreciation of individual freedom and capitalism.

    This is the crux of the problem. Even if socialism worked (admittedly, that’s like saying “if FTL was possible”) economically it would Still</I< be unaffordable. The cost in human freedom, in liberty, in self-actualization would be forever too great. Socialism reduces the mass of mankind to serfdom and no degree of material wealth, of "universal" healthcare or "freedom from need" can compensate for that loss.

    1. The thing is, saying “even if Socialism worked” isn’t like saying “if FTL was possible”. It may be that FTL is possible. There are areas of physics that imply it.

      There is no chance of Socialism working as sold. People do not act that way. Just as there was no chance of the Divine Right of Kings working as described by the lickspittle Church.

      1. The Church didn’t describe it. It was described by the royalists who wanted to use it against the Church.

  29. My first reaction on seeing the title was to ask myself: Can anyone afford Socialism?

      1. If there is a ruling class then it really isn’t socialism, now is it?

        Tyranny disguised or excused as socialism remains a tyranny. A tyranny of any kind is nasty, but one of that sort is, admittedly, particularly nasty.

          1. Defense!!! I made no value statement regarding Socialism.

            In theory socialism should have no ruling class. Where we are told that socialism has been instituted and we find a ruling class it means that the system has been misidentified.

            To observe this is not to make defense of Socialism.

            1. No, it’s socialism. It’s communism that doesn’t have a ruling class. Socialism Is supposed to have government bureaucrats who manage things while the state decays away, but those bureaucrats somehow always manage things so that the state needs to be more involved.

              1. Hell yes, throw ’em out the window. The sooner the better.

                Oxford dictionaries:

                the action of throwing someone or something out of a window:
                “death by defenestration has a venerable history”
                the action of dismissing someone from a position of power or authority:
                “that victory resulted in Churchill’s own defenestration by the war-weary British electorate”

        1. “If there is a ruling class then it really isn’t socialism, now is it?”

          Nonsense; every attempt at Socialism has involved a ruling class. Not explicitly named as such, but clearly there. Oh, the supposed ideals of Socialism claim there won’t be one, but all socio/economic systems claim bilge that has nothing to do with reality. Do we say “That’s not true Feudalism. True Feudalism has never been tried”? Or do we judge systems on how they operate in the real world.

          In the fantasy world, absolute Monarchy and the Divine Right of Kings sounds GREAT.

          In practice they suck suppurating donkey balls.

          and so does Socialism.

          1. Nonsense; every attempt at Socialism has involved a ruling class.

            In other words because the government self-identifies itself as being socialist we have to accept it?

            I value clarity in the use of language. To is to muddy the meaning is to make communications increasingly impossible.

            1. Communism: There’s no state, everything’s owned by the community.

              Socialism: The state owns everything. Theoretically a stepping-stone towards communism.

              Fascism: Private ownership, but state control. You can run your business, as long as you run it the way the government says. You can even keep the profits the state allows you.

              Mercantilism (sometimes called crony capitalism): Private ownership and state policy is set to benefit politically connected businesses. Having trouble selling your wool? Have the government pass a law requiring everyone to wear hats.

              1. Socialism: The state owns everything. Theoretically a stepping-stone towards communism.

                Yes, the state can make it hell to either express my thoughts or pursue my dreams. They still cannot control them: and I, thankfully, remain their owner.

            2. I guess my point is, do we accept the lie built into the word, or do we define the word by what actually happens when it is applied?

              All social/economic systems tout a paradise they will supposedly bring about. If we accept that ‘Socialism’ means the fantasy of Perfect Socialism then we must accept that Monarchy means the fantasy of the Perfect Monarch.

              1. Not at all, all a Monarchy needs is a monarch. Socialism needs another reality.

        2. Bu … but, right there on the label! It says it! (Squints) Okay, looking closer I can see the small print and what it says is, “New & Improved tyranny, with added SOCIALISM!”

          The price does seem rather high; that’s likely why so many get it on the installment plan.

  30. I am not a Trump fan, but he is doing the right things. Although the path he follows is difficult to understand.

    1. I’m thinking “path” might be giving too much credit.
      But, yes, I’m happier with Trump than I would have been with almost any of the alternatives.

  31. Almost 40 years since graduating from OSU (Oregon State). The Forestry program has majorly changed. It is now “Resource Management”. Have no Idea if Professors are still mostly teaching classes or not. Well Bell’s class, probably yes, if he is still alive he is 80+.

    Dichotomous Key is available for free online (original comment linking it is in comment purgatory).

    Professor Bell’s Timber Cruising & Scaling Book is still available. Has not been updated in the last 20 years (minimum). There are still jobs that do this, but employment is way down. Scaler’s went from 1400 – 1500, in the PNW & Alaska (which is the ONLY place they work) in 1979 to about 300 currently (being VERY generous – *Columbia River has 30 – 50 & there were 5 outfits, then there are a few private company Scalers).

    Timber Cruisers. They are out there. I know two personally that are private; Cruise both private lands (mostly small land owners) & public tracts. Larger Timber Companies, like Roseburg, Stevens, & Weyerhouser, employ Silverculture Foresters, who cruise timber.

    *Hubby & I both started with Columbia River in 1979. He stayed with them for over 30 years. Me, I changed to Software. He has been retired now for almost 7 years.

  32. And what does Manning want to happen if elected?
    You forgot “no guns”. ‘Cause with no police there will be no crime, and with no borders there will be now war. So, no guns! It’s magical!
    I think his gender-dysmorphia is only the shallowest part of his mental illness.

    1. Assuming the dysmorphia was correctly diagnosed in the first place.

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