D’Haut en Bas

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I mentioned D’Haut en Bas as a political strategy here sometime ago, and caused considerable confusion. So I promised to revisit it.

Of course the confusion was probably greater amid those readers who are fluent in French, who were going “what the heck does Sarah mean? Condescension is not a form of government, though I dare say our self proclaimed elites wish it were.”

Right. Look, I haven’t done any serious study of French in… 34, going on 35 years, so I can’t swear this is a fact, but I suspect “condescension” in French as in English only came to have a bad denotation in the last century or so, and before that you would praise someone’s “great condescension” as a positive quality, in that they consented to interact with their social inferiors.

What I do know for a fact is that when I was doing a deep dive into the French revolution (bad idea. It’s depressing. Also, you’ll never get the bloodstains out of your mind) I heard the king’s strategy described as D’Haut en Bas.

And it clicked with what I knew of Louis the XIV who arguably set the patterns of the ancien regime, which still subsisted at the time of the revolution.

You see, in the days of Louis XIV he had problems with the great noblemen.  This wasn’t unusual for France which for vast portions of its history was a set of borders in search of a country. At various times several portions of France showed themselves ungovernable, usually because under the control of a nobleman who saw no reason to obey the nominal king.

But Louis the XIV settled their hash. He constructed his court in such a way and build and arranged things in such a way that most noblemen couldn’t afford not to dance attendance on him, and yet dancing attendance on him was financially ruinous, which meant they need to dance attendance on him more than ever. (In case you wonder where the “they’ll turn us all into beggars, because beggars are easy to please” strategy of the left came from.

At the same time the king advanced (at least some, until, of course they got to big) members of the new French middle class, and raised them up in importance, creating a pincer movement on the big noblemen.

Louis XVI, who was nowhere near as adept, at least for a time trusted the same maneuver would work for him against the nascent and increasingly more rebellious middle class.  He tried to make himself into the protector of the dispossessed, the little people in order to crush the middle class between the royalty and the masses.

It didn’t work. I did say he wasn’t nearly as adept, right. In fact, in many ways Obama reminded me of him.  And in the end, he lost his head.

Of course, Obama’s issue was … slightly different.  We’ll get to that in a moment. First, let me point out that d’haut en bas as a pincer movement has worked in practically every communist country.  It worked, for that matter, for the middle class during the French revolution. Yes, the middle class used it against the rest of the middle class (and small nobility) by convincing the poor and dispossessed that they were being taken care of by whatever portion of the middle class was in power at the moment.  (Yes, the French revolution will give you a headache, which still beats … well, not precisely living through it.)

But take Venezuela for instance (going, going, gone.) The commies got in power by convincing the very poor that the commies would take care of them.  And kept this going for a long long time.  They might still be doing it for all I know. No matter how bad things are, they can always tell the poor that the commies are doing what they can to improve their lives.

But you see, Obama tried the strategy. And I think he still doesn’t understand why it failed.  I know the left alternates between not knowing why the strategy doesn’t work, and desperately trying to create a new underclass so maybe with them it will work.

Part of the reason the strategy didn’t work for Obama is that he is in fact pretty terrible at reading the country. This is because like all Marxists he only admits of reality in order to segment it into proper Marxist constructs.  And if something he sees doesn’t fit into Marxism, he by gum will make it fit, somehow.

So — I swear to you, having met and studied and worked with his kind I’d put my hands in the fire this is true — when he aided abetted (if not suggested that someone start it) and cheered on the Occupy Wall Street movement (the embodiment of his threat to have the mob come for the bankers, after all) he expected that the “underclass” would immediately rise up and cover his astroturf in a verdant coat of grassroots.

I suspect he’s still puzzled it didn’t work and that instead the Tea Party rose up to tell him they were taxed enough already.  You must excuse him, the man has no clue what America is like. Regardless of where he was born, he didn’t grow up here, but worse, he’s never made any effort to be of us.  He probably (like Hillary and her supporters) is probably still spinning over why precisely the people went for the man who promised to bring jobs back over the woman who promised to give them all better and larger welfare.

In nine countries out of ten, the promise of money for nothing (with or without their chicks for free) would have beat the offer of remunerated work.

So, am I saying d’haut en bas can’t work in America?

Well, it doesn’t work as well as it does in the rest of the world. And honestly, thankfully, it works less than it did in the seventies.

BUT, and this is an important but, it sort of works on a very regional basis.  There is a reason that democratic controlled cities — as I was reminded of when visiting Pete’s the other day, as the “homeless” problem has started spreading from downtown — are indulging the “homeless” with all sorts of rules and suspension of laws supposed to accommodate them.

The city government counts on people not realizing that in fact the homeless are not the dispossessed needing more money and city services, but drug addicted, mentally ill, often dangerous individuals in need of far more than money or city services. They also count on people — finding themselves accosted on the streets and sometimes even assaulted by people who aren’t even responding to reality (the homeless in this case, not Marxists. Making Marxists homeless is a laudable goal, though) — demanding that something be done, which allows the city to do more things that bring in more homeless.  And then raising the taxes, to do more things…

The end state of this is Detroit, I think. Or another of the American cities destroyed by socialists. And meanwhile, at the top, the leftists responsible for the debacle, get themselves a permanent position and become royalty.

Thing is, I think the mood is changing.  Only six months ago, I swear every cozy mystery released genuflected towards the homeless, who were always laid off computer programmers, or something.  Now… not so much.  I’ve yet to see a new one where the homeless provide the villain, but… I sense it’s not very far off.

Because here’s the thing with the strategy of d’haut en bas: unless played by a master, sooner or later the bas realize they’re being kept down on purpose to provide shock troops to en haut.  And then there’s hell to pay.

And most of our left aren’t masters. Most of them (partly, granted through an excellent education that tainted their world view with a dirty patina of Marx) aren’t competent to find their own *sses with two hands, a seeing eye dog and the latest model GPS.

And their idea of “the people” is — to put it mildly — deluded.

In these conditions, and with the media no longer serving as a shield, fooling some of us some of the time is a stretch goal. Mostly they hope to convince us to stay quiet and play along. Which is why the latest incarnation of d’haut en bas is a reach for the eternally unemployable malcontents cosplaying at “heroes” and heroines of social justice.

That is working as bizarrely as you’d expect, because of course these poeple have to step ever more to the left and demand ever more radical solutions.  You see, they aren’t poor, and they want to feel important and radical. Hence, their leader, Occasional Cortex.

Don’t let the chorus of ignoramuses silence you. Our would be rulers think they’re playing three-d chess, but in reality, they’re just a pigeon, sh*tting all over the board and declaring victory.

In the end we win, they lose. Because we wouldn’t know bas even if we were it, and as for haut, the bastage ain’t been born whom we’d consider above us.  And they don’t know what to do with that.

But we do.

 

 

290 thoughts on “D’Haut en Bas

  1. Better to be bas in America than haut in some polished socialist’s perfumed palace. For here any bas can become haut if he but works hard and intelligently, better still if he’s lucky and the first two besides. *chuckle*

    In twenty years, those of us still kicking around will likely have to explain to those young bucks how the dems used to use those of richer pigmentation as shock troops and useful tools, easily discarded. Failure is not the end. They’ll have some new hotness in a couple of decades that tells us how “socialism has never really been tried!” just you watch.

      1. “I’ll go straight this time, you’ll see! I’ll make something of myself!”

        “Yeah, whatever you say, Karl. See you in six months.”

    1. One of the problem with the perfumed palaces of polished socialists is that they never do get the concrete to set properly, and the perfume always has a faint odor of diesel distillates.

  2. In Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen shows the—unpleasant—Mr. Collins praising Lady Charlotte de Burgh for her “condescension.” The fact that he thinks it’s a praiseworthy trait is shown as part of the cluelessness that makes Elizabeth Bennet refuse his proposal, and that Charlotte Lucas, who does marry him, chooses to put up with. So a negative view of “condescension” goes back at least that far. I don’t think Jane Austen’s power as a political propagandist should be underestimated!

    1. I’ve already begun to use “condescension” in a positive way when talking at (not to; never to–see pigeon and gameplaying comment from Sarah above) leftists:

      ‘Of course I’m being condescending to you–how else do you think I can talk to you? Oh, and I don’t think you understand just what “condescending” means…’

      1. Condescending: Sense of “”voluntarily waive ceremony or dignity proper to one’s superior position or rank and willingly assume equality with inferiors” is from early 15c. Used to be a positive word, and one I’d almost equate with humility, or humbling one’s self.

        Nowadays? More like,
        from the words con, involving abuse of confidence, to swindle, to trick; and descend, to pass from a higher place or level to a lower one. To pretend, often very transparently, to be one of the lower socio-economic class

    2. OK so Pride and Prejudice is published 1813. Oddly there’s a hymn
      Come Christians Join to Sing (https://hymnary.org/text/come_christians_join_to_sing)
      that has these lines in its 2nd verse:

      he is our Guide and Friend;
      to us he’ll condescend;
      his love shall never end.
      Alleluia! Amen!

      which I always thought weird as as noted condescend has some pretty negative
      connotations and the “he” in that arguably ought to be written “He” as it refers back to the previous verse
      which is talking about “Christ the King”. Had to look that up, while I was at Hymnary I noted the hymn is from 1843 so 30 years after Pride and Prejudice condescend is still used in a positive sense at least sometimes. Language shift is a fascinating thing.

      1. I’ve read Bible translations (Geneva and KJV) as well as English-language creeds where G-d condescending to become man is a great and wonderful, laudable thing. And you can get that from the context. The shift to the negative in American-English seems to kick in earlier than in British-English, which makes sense based on cultural changes in the US.

        1. If God condescends to us, that’s ok. He’s God. If another human condescends to us, scrag him. He ain’t God, though he probably thinks so.

          Especially if he’s Prog Left.

        2. It makes sense. If you believe that some people (i.e. the aristocracy and the “gentlemen”) are better than others, the idea of one of those high ones lowering themselves to talk to one of the inferiors is laudable. If you believe all men are created equal, the idea of someone “lowering” himself to talk to you is insulting because he’s falsely implying that he’s naturally above you.

        3. Right I think that’s the sense it is used in the hymn. Of course the bible usages are MUCH older, KJV is 1615, Geneva is even older than that like 1560. We’re back in the English of Shakespeare so BIG shifts. Do other languages shift as much as English? The KJV has stuff where the word meanings are almost opposite of modern usage, and Shakespeare you really need to pay attention to the footnotes. It seems crazy. Ive poked at 17th century French (about fencing) and other than some spelling shifts (e.g. espee vs epee with a circumflex in the latter) I felt I could cope with it (Mind you 30 years ago I’d be doomed now). Could just be the subject matter.

          1. German . . . hasn’t changed as much. The dialects have, but Hochdeutsch, the formal German of government and literature has been set for a while. Spellings were changed in the, hmm, late 1990s if memory serves, in part because of conflicts with ASCI coding of the characters.

            At the moment some people are calling for the elimination of the formal/informal distinction, the “academic” verb tense (which is dying anyway), and gender (at least for living things). I don’t have a dog in the fights, so I stay away.

            1. With Germany and Italy not being countries (as we think of them) until mid to late 19th century I suspect they tended to have LOTS of little dialects. I remember my Grandmother in law (2nd generation Italian from Sicily) and Grandfather in law (2nd Generation Northern Italian) arguing (quite lovingly) over the pronunciation or even the word for various things. Grandmothers pronunciations were more like I knew from the way friends grandparents said things (I think CT Italian contingent was strongly Southern Italian/Sicilian). Shame they’re mucking with German spelling. I always loved that its spelling was so regular. Made singing German easy. Italian or French were always a nightmare and French’s odd vowels didn’t make it any easier 🙂 .

    3. Ah, no. You misread that. You don’t read other stuff of the period.
      Actually condescension was positive. it was the fact that Lady Catherine made it obvious she was condescending, despite the fact that Mr. Collins would inherit the estate of a landed gentleman, and that he thought this was great that made it despicable. I.e. he was showing no self respect.

      1. In fairness to Mr. Collins’ perceptivity (limited though it was) there was very little about his “self” deserving of respect.

      2. I’m not sure about that. The facts are (a) that Lady Charlotte thinks of herself as above, for example, Elizabeth, (b) that she makes it clear that she’s associating with her inferiors and expects to be admired for it, (c) that this makes her odious, (d) that Mr. Collins admires her and likes being treated as a client, (e) that this is used to show that he’s a clueless idiot, and (e) that Lizzie gets one of the best speeches in the book rejecting that attitude, the one about “He is a gentleman. I am the daughter of a gentleman.”

        It doesn’t seem very different from the classic Doonesbury strip where the Reverend Scott Shaw, the Fighting Priest Who Can Talk to the Young!, gives breakfast to a little black boy from the ghetto, and when asked how he likes it, the boy praises it, adding, “And I don’t even mind the slight condescanding flavor.”

        Yes, you can distinguish this bad sense of “condescension” from an earlier good sense, but being used to refer to different things is exactly how words evolve. Isn’t it?

        1. because in letters and documents (non fic) of the period, condescension didn’t have a bad load to it. it was admirable, actually. The fact is that Lady C. is condescending in OUR sense, and by toad eating her, Mr. Collins makes himself a fool.

          1. Forgive me, Sarah, but I’m not sure why you think that’s relevant. I did not say, not at all, that the bad sense of condescension was established usage at the time. Rather, I offered it as an early example of the bad sense. Such an early usage might plausibly have been an innovation; indeed Austen might have been the first to use it that way, though I certainly don’t have historical evidence to support that and thus do not assert it. But in any linguistic change, someone has to be the first to use the new form or meaning, and then it has to go through a period of being rare, before it becomes common and then standard. Evidence that it was not standard at the time does not support a claim that it was not an early example of an innovative usage; if anything, it supports that claim.

    4. While I admire your reading between the lines her, I fear that you are wrong William. I think that Ms Hoyt’s take is correct.

      Jane Austen uses ‘condescension’ rather often in this and her other books, and is (as far as I can recall) used as a complement or at least as a positive attribute. It took me quite a while to wrap my mind around the idea that ‘condescension’ expressed by another was a positive attribute. I still can’t totally get comfortable with that view, but when reading Austen one just has to else the prose just doesn’t make sense.

      OTOH, I don’t recall any early American writer even using that term. Don’t think that ‘condescension’ would have ever been thought to be a good attribute by an American raised after our revolution.

      One has to accept that eighteenth century sensibilities are not the same as twenty-first century sensitivities. Truly the past is another country.

    1. Obviously we aren’t being xenophobic enough.

      If that lady of refined breeding and profound education is able to be successful in American politics despite having such an understanding of American politics. Of course, she is of foreign blueblood stock, and stupid enough to think that matters here.

      1. Meh. She won one race against a distracted and diffident incumbent in a rotten burrough. Let’s see her get re-elected more than once. First re-election could occur because the throng of challengers cannibalizes their vote, second re-election is the one where the challenge gets serious.

        1. There is a bit of a civil war coming in the Dem ranks- the old, comfortable crony capitalist vs the young socialists. The trick for the old guard is to cut the Squad & Bernie Bros down without driving off the young radicals.
          On the presidential front, the trick is to carefully cancel out Bernie with Liz, being sure neither of them really get too far.
          With the Squad, we’ve seen them take out Kinky Threesome chick, and it looks like Omar is going to get a bit of heat. AOC may get re-redistricted out, she may get a properly financed primary opponent, she may even get whacked with the ethics hammer.
          We’ll see.

    2. >> “Always On Crack”

      There’s one I hadn’t heard!

      Sarah, you may be interested to know that, thanks to your efforts, she really has become “Occasional Cortex” to me. When you called her that this time I actually had to struggle for several seconds to remember her real name. I’d make a snarky remark about hoping that you’re proud of yourself but I think we both know you’d just spike the football and do a victory dance.

      1. known as the Weird Al effect. When a song comes on the radio and you sing along with his lyrics, not the bands. i.e. Fat, rather than Bad

        1. Someone had a radio on where my wife once worked. It was playing AC/DC’s “Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap.” She was singing Bob Rivers’ “Dirty Deeds Done With Sheep,” which earned her a Stern Reprimand from one of the supervisors…

          “My friend Larry has a little lamb
          her fleece is white as snow.
          He keeps braggin’ ’bout her night and day
          someone should tell him, ‘No!'”

        2. Of course in some cases Weird Al’s version is a distinct improvement. For example Amish Paradise rather than Gangsta Paradise, And honestly as much I grew up with Don Maclean and American Pie, I hear ” My, my this here Anakin Guy maybe Vader some day later but now he’s just a small fry”. In that case Weird Al surpassed both the song and the movie source material. That man is a true genius.

          1. My problem with episodes 1-3 (my main problem) was that the guy cast as semi-adult Anakin wasn’t up to the task of playing Great Promise Corrupted. He came across as a sniveling teen.

            Maybe if I’d been able to stomach watching them more then the once I’d have a different take.

            *sigh*

            1. I gather, from some of the behind-the-scenes stuff, that this was in part because he was being DIRECTED to play it that way. Which is also why most of the other actors come across as so wooden as well–Lucas really doesn’t like actual live, breathing actors (this was a complaint from the original trilogy as well, and if I recall right he only directed the FIRST one, before wisely letting other people do it). Granted, I’ve not seen the kid in much else, but we all KNOW Natalie Portman is a far better actor than you’d think she was if you only took the Prequels as a guide.

              But yeah. My biggest complaint about the prequels was that I wanted to be SORRY Anakin fell to the dark side, not spending movies 2-3 wishing Obi-Wan would shove him off a sidewalk in Coruscant already, and what the HECK did Padme see in him anyway, because he was a creepy stalker.

              1. I have, at long last, learned to not blame the actor for the performance the director elicited. It is the director’s job to direct, damn it, and that means more than just telling the cinematographer where to point the cameras. If an actor is incapable of producing the performance desired by the director the director’s job is to a) instruct the actor b) replace the actor with somebody able to do the needed performance or c) revise the requirements for the performance to something the actor can provide.

                When an actor is wooden or chews the scenery it is the director’s fault for not demanding better.

                1. Amen. And let’s face it … when Sam “monkey fighting snakes on this Monday to Friday plane!” sounds like a cardboard cutout, the problem isn’t the raw acting talent.

                  1. Although at least he was still having fun. (And, like Liam Neeson, Ewan MacGregor, and Ray Park, got in trouble on set for making lightsaber sound effects with his mouth while filming fight scenes.)

                    1. Dude, if I had a lightsaber hilt and was being filmed, you’d best *believe* I’d be making the sound as well.

                    2. I do seem to recall that Lucas was a pretty good sport about it–it was more along the lines of “Look, that’s gonna REALLY piss off the editing people, so let’s not do that, okay?” than actual fury 😀

                      Honestly, I think if someone had just sat Lucas down and made him write out a fairly coherent overall story and then said “Great, but while you be the producer, let’s get someone else to do the directing” the prequels would have been less…problematic.

                      On the other hand, the sequels were a whole OTHER set of problems, sigh. (And I suspect that Lucas is quietly going “Nyah nyah nyah and you thought *I* was bad?”)

              2. Right Hayden Christiansen and Natalie Portman seem to have NO chemistry together. So you don’t buy the relationship as other than stupid youthful infatuation (Not that that can’t get you in a boatload of trouble cf Romeo and Juliet). And it is clear where Luke Skywalker inherited his stupid whiny behavior from. The Fear Yoda sensed in Anankin wasn’t the issue it was the whiny entitlement.

          2. Try Stevie Wonder’s Pasttime Paradise. And then play it for the youngun’s and watch their heads melt.

          3. My family will sing along with the song on the radio– using Al’s lyrics.

            My mom manages to blow someone’s mind at least once a year by being a Weird Al fan who sings along with him as easily as she does Cash or the Possum.

      2. Frankly Always Obviously Crazy strikes me as being more on a cocktail of drugs (heroin, pot, meth, and whatever it is that results in zombie shuffle PLUS crack).

        And yeah, we call her the Crazy Critter (followed by ‘which one?’ ‘Occasional Cortex’ Oh that one) at home, because none of us can be bothered to remember her name.

        1. … none of us can be bothered to remember her name.

          Given that IIRC you’re all citizens of Australia, not the U.S., well… why should you bother? 🙂

          1. I am in the US. I should bother. I have to look up her name, every time. Or use AOC.

            I have no control over her election, not my district.

            FWIW. Even if I cared I couldn’t pronounce her name correctly. I’m gifted that way (at 63, might be a bit childish, but, not practicing …)

          1. If she had a mind to drug into stupidity, that is. I’m not sure there’s enough functioning brain matter there to qualify for drugs TO rot.

            Still, there’s enough there for her to spew out the verbal diarrhea she does, so perhaps it’s the human version of Mad Cow Disease. Wasn’t cannibalism rumored to be a thing that green-favoring lefties advocated should be the next taboo to break down?

        2. > remember her name

          “Little Miss Hyphenated.” And aggressive about it…

          No, adding a hyphen isn’t going to turn you into a Saxe-Coburg-Gotha…

    3. There’s still the Occasional rumor going around that a) she’s not as stupid as she sounds, and b) she’s a VRWC activist c) tasked to destroy the Democrat party.

      I don’t believe theses ‘a’ and ‘b’, but she’s doing a bangup job at ‘c’.

      OTOH, if ‘a’ and ‘b’ were true, would she act differently? Insty credit’s Roger Stone for the existence of The Squad.

      1. In a variant of Hanlon’s razor, Do not attribute to guile and planning what may be more easily explained by stupidity and laziness :-).

      2. I read one political rumor some where that the New York Democratic Party is considering cutting her district out if New York State lose a seat in the House after the 2020 Census. It would be amusing irony. She made a lot of political enemies with that Amazon HQ stunt.

        1. Actually, her mortal sin is joining a few fellow travelers in sponsoring primary opponents with money if the incumbents weren’t Left enough.

          1. I don’t think she’s following the Dale Carnegie playbook:

            AOC-linked group demands Hillary Clinton back Sanders if he is nominated
            The liberal political action committee that backed Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez for Congress called on Hillary Clinton to back the eventual 2020 Democratic Party nominee after the former secretary of state refused to say if she would support Bernie Sanders.

            Clinton, 72, would not commit on Tuesday to backing Sanders, her rival for the 2016 nomination, in a general election should he become the 2020 nominee.

            In a statement, Justice Democrats Executive Director Alexandra Rojas, 24, said Clinton’s remarks were “unacceptable, out-of-touch, and dangerous,” calling on her to “immediately say that she’ll do everything she can” to support the eventual nominee. “We must keep our eye on the prize.” …

            1. Well, why shouldthe Wicked Witch of the East Wing support a Democrat Party nominee who isn’t even a member of the Democrat Party?

              And it’s not as though The Squaaludes can do much to deprive Felonia von Pantsuit of access to her many, many boxes of Chardonnay….

        2. It is entirely possible — not probable, mind, but increasingly possible — that the NY Dems will not have a majority in the state assembly to control redistricting after 2020. Reportedly the “bail reform” inflicted on the state by Manhattan Dems, the Criminal Defense bar and Liberal Activists is not going over well in the suburbs — and those further out were none too happy with the Liberals already.

          Anger over new no-bail law killing LI Dems but progressives don’t care
          Bail “reform” has triggered a massive wave of revulsion across New York, as judges are forced to return ­serious offenders to the streets within hours of arrest, only to see them commit new crimes within days. Public anger threatens to split Democratic lawmakers, many of whom may face significant ballot challenges in November.

          [SNIP]

          “We are getting crushed,” said one senior staffer for a Democratic state senator based outside of New York City. “People are furious. We are getting call after call, and it is the same thing with all the other offices. … We’re getting clobbered.”

          But not every senator is worried about the backlash. Dems hold 40 out of 63 seats, and 25 of those represent the Big Apple, where the loudest public voices scream for bail ­reform. Very few of these officials have to worry about November, because their deep-blue districts haven’t elected a Republican in decades. Their only concern is a primary challenge from the left, which they can avoid by parroting the line that last year’s reforms promote justice.

          [SNIP]

          Areas outside New York City generally tilt more to the center, especially on crime and public safety. And most Democratic senators from these districts came to office only in the last cycle or two. These electeds are more sensitive to the howls of outrage they are hearing from their constituents.

          “City Dems are in a bubble,” says the senior staffer. “They say we can win on the talking points, and they have the muscle. They forced the reforms through in the budget, so nobody had the chance to vote against them.”

          [SNIP]

          Candice Giove, a GOP Senate spokesperson, says that the Democrats “not only voted for these dangerous criminal-justice reforms, but they knew exactly what would come out of them … . They are pitching small changes to a significant failure that they could have prevented in the first place.”

          Even local officials, who had nothing to do with the state ­reforms, are feeling the heat. A field organizer for a City Council member running for Queens borough president reports, “All the canvassers are getting asked, ‘Where does he stand on bail reform?’ It’s a barrage of questions about a state issue, but people say they won’t sign the ballot petition if he supported bail reform.”

          1. It’s apparently even worse than that–here’s a local story about some of the ins and outs (I live in Upstate): https://www.wktv.com/content/news/A-Call-for-action-on-Bail-Reform-Laws-567173941.html

            The money quote, from the Oneida County DA: “Nobody cooperates because of the discovery laws that require us to turn in their name, their address, their grand jury testimony, and their statements over to the defendants 15 days after arrest. No one’s cooperating. Big surprise.”

            Like… wait, do we really have discovery reform giving names and addresses of every witness immediately at the SAME TIME that we’re refusing to hold anyone for any reason? WHAT COULD GO WRONG.

            1. Well, what could go wrong with Kalifornia’s Proposition 47 which makes it nearly impossible to prosecute theft of less than $950.00?

              Democrats proudly proclaim that it has ‘reduced the prison population by 13,000’.

              Sane people see that 13,000 criminals have been set loose and given a license to steal almost $950.00 at a time. Unfortunately, only 2.6 million people were sane enough to vote against it, while 4.2 million voted for it.

              It must be a result of sending them to government schools.
              ———————————
              Artie: “Don’t open that!! It’s the original can of worms!”

            2. Guy named Colin Flaherty has been documenting this problem, which has been happening in various “blue heavens” for 20+ years as various Lefty prosecutors and judges have been following this policy “off the books”. This law has just made the practice explicit.

        1. Not even Clouseau; he always blundered his way to the truth.

          Maybe Colonel Klink, utterly oblivious to the Resistance cell right under his nose.
          ———————————
          Leo Bloom: “Well, if we assume you’re a dishonest person—“
          Max Bialystock: “Assume, assume!”

      3. Here ya go: “The Brains behind AOC”
        (Don’t let the guy’s slurmy presentation put you off.)
        Basically, she was built by Cenk’s “Justice Democrats”.

    4. That’s been a long time scheme that is now having a resurgence (at least I’ve seen it more lately).

      They usually point out the differences between the (currently admitted) Democrat party line and hard-line Socialism — usually mumbling something about ownership of the means of production or their not being anti-Capitalism (which strictly they aren’t… until they are) — and then claim because the Democrats don’t espouse those things that Democrats aren’t Socialists, ergo they are not the Left, ergo they are the Centrists. It’s a bit of razzle dazzle, but you’d be surprised how often I’ve heard it repeated by poor suckers who have gotten sucked in by it.

      The corollary they are trying to push, of course, is that us Old-white-male/Republican/Capitalist/racist/homophobic/insult-of-the-day(ist)/Science-denying/Christian-fundamentalists (never mind that most of that doesn’t even remotely apply) are by contrast dangerous extremists who are trying to take over and change things (for the worst) in America by standing in the way while they try to take over and “Fundamentally change America”.

    5. I swear they just keep her around to make Hilary, Bernie and Joe look brilliant by comparison.

      1. They’re going to have to find someone even stupider than AOC (a deep challenge). Slow Joe makes a moldering kumquat look like a Rhodes Scholar.

        1. Considering some of the more notable recipients of Rhodes Scholarships I am not sure the kumquat isn’t ahead in that race.

        2. He’s smarter than he looks. He got Nancy to impeach the President for investigating the dirty deals he bragged about.

          1. That may merely be a blind pig occurrence. Having observed him since he first ran fr president I am convinced that the only way he can find his butt is trying to scratch his head.

            1. If he’s a blind pig, he’s a damned lucky one. He keeps finding acorns, moving up, and keeps surviving what should be career ending blunders. Once is happenstance and all that.

              1. Sometimes you flip a quarter 8 times and its heads every time. Slow Joe gets saved by the fact that the MSM and the democrats cover for his indiscretions and lunacies. So maybe that quarter is loaded…

      2. Yep, and frankly that’s a difficult task given it’s Gibbering Stupidity VS Seizure, Heart Attack and Alzheimers. Given that the ideal of feminism seems to be screaming incoherent, insufferable and asinine tantrum-throwing brats, she’s definitely the ideal.

        An ideal example of crippling stupidity, but they’ll stop at ‘example’ and ignore the rest.

    6. The Democratic party isn’t left – enough for her tastes. ‘Course, from her perspective anything to the right of Lenin looks center/conservative . . .

  3. I expect he still hasn’t figured out how the Occupy movement (and things like the pipeline protest) has the reputation for filth, rape, murder, even with the media covering them; while the TEA party, and things like the protest yesterday do not. Even with the media digging up ask the dirt they can find, and throwing in ringers whenever they think they can get away with it.

      1. and those that were not paid were upper middle class or higher who could afford to take the time. “Hey, if it gets my student loan for [insert useless degree here] written off, the time is worth it!” and they were easily lead by a their nose-rings

    1. Occupy Movement: young, unemployed, drug abusing, wastrels.

      Tea Party: conservative old ladies barely living on their fixed incomes, conservative people of all incomes and genders tired of paying too much of their income in taxes and seeing too little return for it.

      1. Not ladies, in my area.
        I know because despite younger son GLOWERING by side, I was a babe within seconds of stepping onto a demonstration. I had guys from 20 years younger to 20 years older trying to get my phone #. Despite LARGE (six 3 or 4 depending on how he stands, and built like a brick shithouse) son, and my being 40 lbs overweight, at least.

        1. Where you live, being female and not going along with the left has got to be low odds. Or at least seem that way, as quite a few no doubt are keeping their heads down. To keep a job, to remain civil to friends and family, or whatever reason seems important to them.

          In a broader sense, for a while now women have been slightly more likely to be at least left leaning. That’s changing recently, but we men are slow to notice such things, you understand. *grin*

    2. He probably wrote it off as Deplorables, NRA provocateurs, and George W. Bush, who he blamed for everything from Katrina to gas prices…

    3. He probably expected something akin to the Cultural Revolution, with him as Chairman Mao.
      Turns out, the People weren’t just that into him.

      1. Richelieu had his good side (as even Dumas conceded), but he destroyed most of the good he did by all of the bad he did. And he was not faithful to his vocation, either.

        Also he was just creepy and over-controlling.

        Then you get someone from the same time, like St. Vincent de Paul, who spent his whole life empowering other people and encouraging them to help in their own ways, and you can see why Richelieu was a failure.

        (Yes, Flint likes de Paul also, but I never really got the sense that he understood the man. He admires him as an organizer and as charitable, but there is a disconnect from the rest of him, IMHO.)

  4. Last night on the news (Fox news, less delusional than the rest) they had some leftist politician wondering ‘why O why do we have more homeless in Kalifornia when we just spent $2.7 billion to solve The Homeless Problem?’

    Kind of like the ones wondering why there are so many people in prison despite the lower crime rate.
    ———————————
    John Sheridan: “You can’t kill the truth!”
    (pause)
    “Well, you can, but it always comes back to haunt you.”

  5. The end state of this is Detroit, I think. Or another of the American cities destroyed by socialists. And meanwhile, at the top, the leftists responsible for the debacle, get themselves a permanent position and become royalty.
    Detroit was a working town, and the leftoids drove the workers away, fast, then infiltrated the ‘burbs driving them further or destroying their work/jobs. That’s why it emptied out. Many of the other places (say SF and LA) haven’t been “working” towns for a very long time. Or were working towns but that sorta went away for various reasons and though the town/cities didn’t die a Detroit type death right off, they slowly lost the workers and became elites and those working to serve the elites, with a vote base doing nothing (Baltimore, etc). These places didn’t fully empty. Can we debride these places?

    1. LA used to be a working town – it was when I was growing up. Good jobs at Lockheed; plenty of other blue-collar occupations, and actual blue-collar workers could afford to live there.
      But not any more.
      When I was active-duty, the AFRTS programming center in North Hollywood (later moved to the San Fernando Valley) was a possible assignment for military broadcasters – but the quiet word to anyone interested in that assignment was – not unless you have a spouse working at a good-paying job, because otherwise it was impossible to live on the local economy. Eventually the moved the programming center to Norton AFB, so that personnel assigned there could get base housing.

      1. far enough back and SanFran was too. But they didn’t Detroit, they swapped population away from the workers, and as jobs moved away, a few other things took their place. So they were a touch slower but still headed the same well paved route. Helped by the weather out there too. People will put up with a lot to not have need of a snow blower (~_^)

        1. The City and County of San Francisco was still a working town in the years after the Summer of Love, but throughout the 1970s the mundanes were steadily leaving, and the people that moved in to take their place were attracted to the story and not the actual city.

          I have family that originally moved there for San Francisco jobs (an Aunt and a cousin, a couple of RNs, worked in SF hospitals and also for the SFPD) after moving out here from the midwest around 1960, and they both ended up moving out of The City by the mid 1970s for a combination of quality of life and economic reasons. The City was getting tougher and tougher as they drove out all the working class employers (the shipyards and docks and manufacturers in South SF) in favor of the bankers and other upper middle class jobs in the Financial District, and there were plenty of local places with jobs around the SF Bay Area that did not require being in the The City itself.

          Then the Summer Of Love generation started getting elected, and the race paved with good intentions ensued.

          The homeless problem in SF is driven by the massive benefits that drug addled mentally ill folks can get simply by presenting themselves in The City – there has been a supplemental monetary assistance so you can buy your booze or drugs, plus free housing in “residence hotels” which are the hellholes they sound like, since the 1980s. So the word went out that you could get free stuff by showing up, and surprise, more people showed up.

          And to keep that illusion alive they have to insist that the homeless are middle class workers victimized into penury by the evil techlords, except not the techlords that contribute to the SF politicians and get hospitals named after them – other evil techlords.

          Layer over the the cost-of-housing issue that has the lower-tier tech workers living in RVs on city streets, but not in tents in the encampments, and the issue finally reaches the media (well, now it does that there’s an R in the white house – as it did with Reagan and Bush Sr., but not Clinton, and surprise! the homeless are back with GWB, then *poof* they’re gone with Barry, and now they’re back with DJT).

          And the response from the State gov is to implement the rent control that blew up the SF housing market statewide.

          The only way the Gloriously Stupid Peoples Bear Flag Republic will get any better is after it goes bankrupt because of the gov workers unions stranglehold on pension benefits and is put in Federal receivership.

          1. I’ve been telling people the Feds should charge the state and city/county workers with malfeasance and threaten to revert states to territory status if they default on debts.

            1. Oooh. I like that idea. Is there something Constitutional that can be used to revert a state to a territory?

          2. The particularly frustrating thing about the rent control bill was that the voters had literally voted down an attempt by popular ballot to make it easier for local communities to impose rent control.

      2. I was 3rd generation in the SoCal oil industry. I eventually worked for a Tulsa based pump company. We got a 10% California pay bonus. Most of my coworkers in Tulsa couldn’t comprehend a home mortgage bigger than your truck loan payment. My boss transferred to the home office. He moved from a two bedroom condo to a one acre horse property with money left over to buy his daughter a horse. Business next door was a literal sweatshop many Hispanic women sewing jeans all day.

        1. A friend is an aviation tech in Tennessee. His company sent him to San Francisco for some months, and put him up in apartment.

          He was paid *very* well… in Memphis. He called once and told me in a bemused voice that the rent on that apartment was more than his gross pay… and that was back in the ’90s.

          1. One of the guys hubby golf with (same golf men’s club) went from EWEB, where he was riffed, to a crew with power company in the San Diego area. Compensation – $150k annual salary, not exempt (gets OT) + paying $6k/month for an apartment, utility free + two round tickets in continental US, a month. He is a line supervisor of 6 (?) person crew.

            Additional note. Last job I had was for a software firm that had a system for counties for utilities. Note, we had live (well snapshot live) data we worked with to test changes for each client. I remember making a water/power billing change … thought I’d messed up. Change wasn’t what records were pulled, but how they were summarized, & where they were placed. I mean, come on, water bills north of $600 for the Month ??? Power bills north of $700 for the month ??? We complain about our EWEB (power/water/sewer) locally & the combined bill, at worst (ours), is less than $340/month. How can they be that bad? Well, guess what. To begin with those power crews? Six person power crew (standard ?), one supervisor; also, one geologist, one anthropologist, one archeologist, and one other specialist (can’t remember) must be on site while crew is digging/disturbing sites. Plus they can’t just refill over lines the dirt that was just pulled out. Must be framed and concrete used instead.

          2. Just as bad on the East Coast. My wife was living up in the NYC suburbs when we got married; her 500 sq ft “off the books” apartment was about the same rent as my payment on a 3 bedroom house with detached garage in Montgomery AL, taxes and insurance included.

        2. I would move back to Tulsa (I graduated high school from Jenks) in a heartbeat–tornados notwithstanding–in a HEARTBEAT, because the property prices are so dang low.

  6. I’m rather taken by the notion of evaluating the Zeitgeist via trends in popular fiction. If “cozy” mystery writers are beginning to let go of the vision of the homeless as charming, competent people who are merely temporarily down on their luck, that certainly seems like a sign that reality is beginning to creep in.

    Now if someone will just show me a British police procedural which does not feature at least one Muslim cop who is unjustly suspected of the malfeasance committed by his (white-Christian-et-cetera) boss, I’ll begin to hope that England can crawl back from the abyss.

    1. We’re a little bit resistant to the homeless camping crowd, since winter is decidedly more intense east of the Cascades. There are some, and I think it’s a bit more than previous years. OTOH, the cities west of the Cascades in southern Oregon (where snow is a rare-to-sometimes thing, unlike here) are getting fed up with their homeless. $SPOUSE is tellimg me that the People’s Republic of Ashland is getting many more complaints from the people who actually pay taxes (and vote…).

      Somewhat related, I saw the same woman who was begging at a street corner last week was at the same corner yesterday. (Last week we had a major winter storm, and she was out in it). I did notice that she appeared to be dressed quite well; not out of place anywhere in town. Hmm. I’ve heard of professional begging outfits. I have to go back there next week. I’ll look again.

      1. Fifteen years or so stoplight beggars began to infest Austin. When the citizenry started complaining, the city jumped right on the problem: they installed covered “bus stop” benches for the beggars wouldn’t have to be exposed to the weather between lights.

        Something similar happened in Little Rock a few years later, but “unknown persons” apparently chained the benches to their pickup trucks and removed them…

      2. I’ve heard of professional begging outfits.

        The concept of professional beggars has been an element of common knowledge since (at latest) John Gay’s Beggar’s Opera (which was the basis of Brecht & Weill’s Threepenny Opera) published in 1728.

      3. Few years ago there was guy in Bozeman Montana who had his winter pitch at the Costco on-ramp… no matter the weather, there he was, warmly dressed and in excellent spirits… with the ragged top layer artfully arranged…

        … and over at Walmart, the sad-faced pair of old hippies with their bandanna’d dog, who made that spot their career, and at the end of the day could be seen retreating to a middle-aged but decent motor home, permanently parked in Walmart’s lot.

        Tellya, it’s time for another 1960s winter, to freeze out the parasites.

      4. Was recently in Perth, Western Australia. Surprised to see a bunch of homeless in the business district.

      5. I read something a few years ago; taken with a few grains of salt. According to the writer, there was an organized begging group in the Medford, OR area. The employees would get room and board in a place nearby, and would be dropped off at their spot, and picked up at the end of their shift. The tell was that the pickup vehicle was a rather fancy car.

        Not sure if it was true, though the old Costco was in a large shopping area with several anchor stores (WalMart, Lowes and Safeway), and it had a good number of beggars. Costco moved to a much larger new place in an adjacent town, and I haven’t seen beggars at the (isolated) Costco. Don’t get to the old site that often, so am not sure of the beggar count back there. OTOH, without Costco, that took a lot of non-local shoppers away, so maybe less attractive to beggars.

        1. Rumor here in Eugene too. Who knows? Guess one way to find out is to offer appropriate type of pet food instead of money for the pet in tow & see if they are grateful or turn their nose up at it.

      1. Yup. And they’ve been in control for a long time. In the eighties I suspected that it was written into every novelist’s publishing contract that every novel had to have at least one nasty comment about the Thatcher administration. Regardless of whether that had anything to do with the book’s putative theme.

        1. I’m fairly sure while not written into the contract, it was understood. I mean, you know and I know there were “understood” things to put in. i even put in some. I balked others, which… was probably not the right decision, career wise.

          1. So basically you had to create a fictional writer in your head that believed all their crap, and then that fictional writer would then write the crap that they believed into the works you submitted?

            Yeesh, no wonder you came out. That sounds far more exhausting the the “stay under the radar” ghosting mode of passing in Silicon Valley tech cubeland.

    2. You’ll know England has begun to crawl back from its abyss when ITV (never gonna happen at BBC) has a six-part series about corruption in the Rotherham grooming cover-up. Detective Inspector Hellphrozeover and Constable Nautbleedinlikely slowly dig through the obfuscations and deflect the Islamaphobia charges to reveal what was really happening to all those 12 – 14 year-old girls.

      1. Maybe Pratchett’s ghost could wring a Night Watch novel out of it.

        Naw — too hard to make that topic amusing.

        1. When things are so far gone that you can’t crack a joke, you know you’re in it deep. There are some things you *don’t* touch, true.

          But there’s possibilities.

          Say, a philandering conspirator who can’t get it up and keeps trying ever more outlandish and ridiculous remedies (that never work) all the while trying to keep it from his “official” wife and unofficial paramour, and dodging the inspectors besides. Throw in some backstabbing and general stupidity. Keep your heroes and heroines sympathetic. Its doable.

      2. And Telford. I’d also bet that there are more that haven’t gone public yet.

        IIRC, a Labor MP just recently went ballistic about how one of those scandals had essentially been ignored because “islamophobia”. So maybe, just maybe, we’re starting to see the first cracks.

  7. Fighting against the evils of communism may be a task for each generation; but you do it often enough, it stops being a single task and becomes a constant process. And you never get to celebrate a “victory” over a process. I wonder if conservatives have a greater tendency to want to rest on their laurels (comfortably, of course) while progressives aren’t ever comfortable with anything short of “more, more, more”?

    – – –

    And their idea of “the people” is basically, “everyone not me, who agrees with me” and projected onto an imaginary majority of the population.

    1. Conservatives have other lives to lead (getting back home to farm, returning to working & building), so they don’t find a keep-up-the-permanent-fight mode rewarding.

      Progs, on the other hand, have nothing better to do… esp. the ones living in the basements of their parents.

      1. Which is why they prefer violence on — remove threat — violence off.

        https://www.poetryloverspage.com/poets/kipling/married_man.html

        The bachelor will miss you clear
        To fight another day;
        But the married man, ‘e says “No fear!”
        ‘E wants you out of the way
        Of ‘Im an’ ‘Er an’ It
        (An’ ‘is road to ‘is farm or the sea),
        ‘E wants to finish ‘is little bit,
        An’ ‘e wants to go ‘ome to ‘is tea.

  8. The French Revolution did at least have some charming aspects. I didn’t used to be very vindictive, but after what we’ve seen from the Left since November 2016, I wouldn’t mind seeing the heads of AOC, Sanders, Warren, Biden, Nadler, Schiff, Pelosi, etc. tumbling off into a basket.

  9. The homeless don’t make good villains, or at least not good ‘boss antagonist for story climax’ villains, because they tend to be so dysfunctional. They’d make excellent villains for the right kind of B- or C-plots, though: I’m thinking specifically about a bleeding heart being fooled into taking one in and being destroyed when the bum molests everyone behind the bleeding heart’s back, then steals everything not nailed down when confronted and ordered to leave. Something for a Raymond Chandler hero to beat himself up over, because he wasn’t stern/domineering enough in the face of his friend’s or relative’s blind determination to ‘help the needy’ to save him or her from the inevitable consequences.

    But if you don’t want to be vilified by the usual suspects, the bum needs to be a straight white male, preferably of one of the ‘okay to hate’ Christian denominations, and a Nazi to boot.

    -Albert

    1. The homeless make about as good a villain as the walking dead. i.e. NOT. They may be a force of nature, an inconvenience, and a hazard, but that’s about all, unless they become an active disease repository.

          1. Was it? Been awhile since I read the canon, though. It wasn’t for Moriarty personally, though–HE was an Oxford professor, thankyouverymuch. 😀

            1. Heh, when they’re not all Robin Hoods.

              (I love a good thief, I admit, but much as I love the trope, it still makes me roll my eyes. THEY AREN’T GOOD GUYS.)

    2. You can use a homeless individual as an antagonist. But you need to explain why this guy continues to get away with antagonizing the protagonist and the cops aren’t dealing with it. Also, the “homeless” aspect is likely to be overshadowed by a good dose of “just plain nuts”, which will cause the homeless aspect to drop into the background.

      1. That’s why it makes a better B or C plot: The bum is taking advantage of someone the protagonist cares about, and the victim is too pure-hearted to kick the bum out, so the bum keeps escalating the petty predations until the protagonist takes matters into his own hands.

        -Albert

      2. Well, if the victim lives in California or, looks like, New York, of COURSE the cops aren’t doing anything about it…

        An interesting side note, there’s a business-advice blog I’m very fond of (although sadly as infested with politically correct “liberalism” as anywhere else, but the actual advice is sound and the horror stories of insane bosses/companies always entertaining in a train-wreck kind of way). A recent post was asking advice on how to push back on a (crazy) boss’s demand that employees CAMP when on business trips. A common remark in the comments was “Most state parks close enough to cities/towns where the business event would be aren’t safe because of the possibly mentally ill and dangerous homeless” with more than a few immediately genuflecting and saying “Not that all homeless are bad or all mentally ill people are dangerous, of course, OF COURSE they’re not, but…” Cue me rolling my eyes so hard I had to go looking for them under my desk.

      1. Of course it does. We have our very own Straight White Mormon Male (with a great rack!) as a prime example of granting dishonorary Straight White Male Christian status to someone who must be unpersoned.

        -Albert

  10. Only six months ago, I swear every cozy mystery released genuflected towards the homeless, who were always laid off computer programmers, or something. Now… not so much. I’ve yet to see a new one where the homeless provide the villain, but… I sense it’s not very far off.

    Homeless camps are an outstanding place for the villain to hide/use as a base; you could even sugar coat it as them merely being predators and have many sympathetic characters who are just overwhelmed. Have your villain frame both sides, both a fake cop victimizing folks and a fake homeless thief/ rapist.

  11. “I suspect he’s still puzzled it didn’t work and that instead the Tea Party rose up to tell him they were taxed enough already.”

    Canadian here. It will come as a bit of news to most Americans, but Canada is having its own Tea Party moment. The reason is simple: a majority of Canadians don’t have any money, and they don’t have any hope of getting any.

    I read a poll today that asserted half (50%) of Canadians are within $200 of not making their debt payments every month. Worse, they have no expectations that the situation will improve, and see no other way forward but taking on more debt. I’m unsure of the underpinnings of the poll, but going by the looks on people’s faces and the number of tiny old cars on the road these days, the lack of hope part rings very true.

    I am not an economist, but that does not seem like a healthy situation for borrowers or for lenders. It sounds like a pyramid scheme that’s going to break really soon.

    D’Haut en Bas is immigration. They’re importing an new underclass of suckers to shore up the base of the pyramid, but its probably too little too late. Plus the immigrants they’re getting are generally from corrupt nations, they know how the corruption game is played.

    News is the West is talking Separation. Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, are talking Wexit. Its a scam that has worked very well for Quebec since the 1970s and still is working now. The Oil Patch got a taste of the sweet petro-money, and they’re unwilling to let the Liberals virtue-signal them into poverty over the global warming scam.

    In the USA the Tea Party is what led to Trump being elected. In Canada we didn’t have Trump, the “best” we have right now is Doug Ford, and Dougie is no Trump. The Tea Party is what happened on Monday in Richmond Virginia, where the Governor declared a state of emergency because roving bands of redneck terrorists were coming to Mad Max his city into a smoking crater.

    News today, I had to Google it, -nothing- happened in Richmond. Thousands of people showed up armed to the f-ing teeth with all sorts of guns, knives and other deestructive whatnot, body armor, camouflage jackets and enough ammo to re-fight the Battle of the Bulge… and absolutely nothing happened. At all. They even cleaned up the garbage before they left.

    The Left is losing because their model of Human Nature is wrong. Its just flatly incorrect. People do not behave the way the Left expects them to. Ever. They’re wrong every single time.

    We’ve been watching this social movement be wrong about everything since Jean-Jacques Rousseau. We watched as they killed 100 million human beings in the 20th Century. Right now we’re watching as they try to choke the economic life out of Western Civilization. To tax us all into poverty. For our own good.

    That’s why there’s a Tea Party. Because WE CAN SEE YOU, you idiots.

    1. “housands of people showed up armed to the f-ing teeth with all sorts of guns, knives and other deestructive whatnot, body armor, camouflage jackets and enough ammo to re-fight the Battle of the Bulge”

      So now the spin is that it proves “no one is taking your guns” because Northam didn’t use the National Guard. Oh, and “white privilege”.

      1. I prayed hard over Richmond, and have been endeavoring to pray equally hard in thanks that nothing went catastrophically pear-shaped. Today my last liberal friend shared something on Facebook that boiled down to “the 2A protestors did nothing evil, and that only PROVES their evil”. Complete with literally complaining that they were oppressing her *because she saw them walking past her window*.

        I went straight from my normal mild cynicism to “tranquil rage” and I don’t believe I’ll be coming out of it any time soon. It’s a very odd feeling, the mental equivalent of slicing your finger on a kitchen knife and going “technically, this hurts, but I have more important things to consider.” Hm.

      2. Babylon Bee headline.
        Ralph Northam: ‘A Militia Assembling To Defend Their Rights Against Tyranny Is A Dangerous First In American History’

        1. How do the Bee writers do it? How do they manage to consistently find those perfect, pithy phrases to mock the Left with? Oh, it’s not hard to find things to mock about the Left. But doing it so perfectly in so few words, over and over and over… I’m in awe.

      1. Well that’s the thing, isn’t it?

        I’m sure they do see it, they just pretend not to as hard as they can. They look at you, Sarah Hoyt, cast into the Outer Darkness and reviled as a White Mormon Male while the likes of N.K. Jemisin is feted and toasted by all. Nora pretends she doesn’t see, while you loudly proclaim the Emperor isn’t wearing any underwear and his manliness is underwhelming.

        Anyone with the moral backbone of a chordate worm can see that Nora’s path is not the Path of Righteousness.

      2. In part, I think, because they don’t ever experience Mike Rowe’s ‘Dirty Jobs’.

        I had an otherwise rather intelligent person tell me that Socialism can work, because enough people will do the necessary labor out of ‘civic pride’ to carry the freeloaders.

        He clearly knew jack and shit about the kind of heavy/filthy jobs that people only volunteer to do because they pay well for the required skill level. The kind of jobs that women who complain about the ‘pay gap’ never seem to apply for. The kind of jobs that hardly anyone has the ‘civic pride’ to volunteer to do when everyone else clearly doesn’t feel like getting their hands that dirty, but are getting compensated the same.

        It’s the same ‘logic’ that had Gene Roddenberry decide that all Starfleet members were officers, so that there would be no ‘oppressed’ enlisted.

        -Albert

              1. Remember though, that O’Brien started as a lieutenant in TNG, until they decided to make him a petty officer.

                1. He was actually highly variable; in TNG he was “Chief” and such very randomly, and his pips were pretty dang random.

                  he was part of why I joined the NAvy. ^.^

                  1. As the Star Trek wiki Memory Alpha details in a whole subsection, O’Brien’s rank was … inconsistent. Wore ensign and lieutenant pips, got called lieutenant by Riker once, headed a large engineering department, went to the Academy …
                    There’s no way to plausibly retcon it. Gene wrote him as part of his “everyone’s an officer” weirdness, but after Gene got bumped out the writers decided that they wanted a below deck view and demoted O’Brien to noncom. Both TNG and DS9 were better for it, too, though even they occasionally forget to take into consideration what being a noncom meant (e.g. he shouldn’t have had memories of the Academy, unless somehow the Academy had both commissioned and enlisted tracks?).

            1. Roddenberry likely imagined Chiefs as warrant officers, which he probably thought it meant they weren’t enlisted.

              Assuming he thought that far, a fact not in evidence.

        1. enough people will do the necessary labor out of ‘civic pride’

          He’s apparently never attended a street fair, else he’d have noticed the number of people whose debris miss the trash bins and nobody can’t be bothered to pick it up and toss it in. If ‘civic pride’ won’t impel people to stoop down for a discarded red solo cup not two feet from a trash bin I have little confidence it will be sufficient incentive for sewer repairs.

          OTOH, a mere sixty cents per pound payment for aluminum cans (or two cents per standard 16 oz can) seems t do wonders. So I think we can price ‘civic pride’ below two cents per can as an incentive.

          1. One can ask that person how many hours a week they spend volunteering with various civic organizations.
            I suspect that the answer is ‘none’.

        2. It’s the same ‘logic’ that had Gene Roddenberry decide that all Starfleet members were officers, so that there would be no ‘oppressed’ enlisted.

          No, just oppressed junior officers.

        3. Used to work on an oil rig. Had many ex con coworkers. Boss didn’t care who you were as long as you would work hard at a dirty job. Blacks and Mexicans too. He wasn’t prejudiced, but he did name the black yard dog Ni**er. I still remember the boss getting to work and calling “Here Ni**er! Come here Ni**er! Good boy Ni**er.” The ’70’s oil patch was a different world.

      3. To truly understand, you have to turn off the part of you that involves critical thinking and logic. Make nigh all judgements on emotion and *nothing else.* It’s bad we have so many poor people, let’s make them all rich! It’s bad brown people aren’t successful like us, it must be because bad Republican racist hatemongers are keeping them down! And so on. This is the rank and file lefty.

        Amoral fellow travelers are a rung up. They may know what’s up, and want in on the grift. Community organizers, think mob middle managers, run little mini-protests and cancel culture at the lowest levels. Some true believers in this rank, too, but they rise no further. See Bernie’s gulag fans, forex.

        At the top are mostly the real monsters and the puppets. Monsters that know a lot about omelettes and eggs, but don’t care because it will never effect them. Puppets that are there to serve, and take a fall. Scandal sponges, but highly placed.

        You either are in on the scam, or not. If not, you can’t think very clearly on it. Cannot, mind, it isn’t a “won’t” sort of thing. Colleges are great places to give young mind effective defenses against critical thinking and logic. Social reinforcement is also a massive factor. All your friends cheer when you take down the hater. They would shun you should your voice become dissonant in their vile song of envy and hate.

        If you are in on the scam, other people are naught but tools for the most part. Means to an end. Mark well, this sort is not only to be found on the left, as we’ve seen with the nevahtrumpah tribe. There is money, and a lot of it, to be made if you present yourself just right (left). Short term and long term. Who profited most in the dismal economy of the Obama years? Private citizens? Or was it the media, the college professors, and most especially government officials? When businesses were closing left and right and jobs were flying away overseas, who was hiring more and more, and getting raises besides?

        All you need to do is ignore that nagging little voice that says, “water is wet. Fire will burn…” There is opportunity to be found for those whose conscience is well trained not to bother him whilst the necessary dirty work is being done. No question. This has always been the case, from the earliest days.

        No, it’s not impossible to understand the leftist. Difficult, unpleasant, and makes you want a good scrubbing after. But nowadays, time is much better spent doing the sorts of things that don’t prick your conscience and turn your heart to worry. Much better to put shoulder to the wheel, and put our efforts to taking care of self and family, and a bit left over for reminding our public servants that they were put there to serve everyone but themselves *first.*

      4. I think the issue is that if they acknowledge that man is not perfectible then THEY are not/can not be perfect. But clearly they are perfect so that blows that theory out of the water ;-). Basically their issue is massive Hubris, which kind of by definition they can’t perceive.

    2. We watched as they killed 100 million human beings in the 20th Century.

      Only 100 million? I think we can credit Hitler’s 12 million to socialism, Stalin had 20* – 60** million, Mao’s Great Leap Forward ‘killed 45 million in four years’ and he is otherwise credited with an additional 33 million (78 million total) which gets us up to 110 – 150 million directly killed before we even get t Cambodia, Cuba, Nicaragua, Venezuela … Nor does it include the infant mortality and abortions attributable to Socialist policies (China alone probably gets at least another 100 million just from its “one-child” policy.) Nor is there any telling how many dead and crippled resulted from Socialist wars.

      There’s also the opportunity cost in advances not achieved due to socialist policies, an undeterminable number but unquestionably large. I would venture that a death toll of one billion is a defensible tally for the Left.

      *”Historians”
      **Solzhenitsyn

    3. “People do not behave the way the Left expects them to. Ever. They’re wrong every single time.”

      Because the Left’s model of society can’t work without changing human nature, and that taints/prevents their understanding how people actually behave.

        1. I just got a yellow dog. He’s dumb as a post (though perhaps still brighter than Occasional Cortex). He’s not 35, but the Dems could always run him anyway, and dare the Supreme Court to kick him out if he wins.

          All in all, he’d probably make a decent president. He might pee on the White House stairs every now and then, but I suspect that’s less damage than the rest of the Dam field would do.

              1. All the difference in the world, or at least this part of it. Oppose them and you have a chance. Let them go, and “Viva la Venezuela!”

      1. Northam 2020

        FML. Sad to say it, but he isn’t that much worse than Gabbard and Williamson.

        At least my ‘Hillary will be nominated, no matter what’ theory lets me ignore the thing to the extent that I can.

        Governors have some interesting possibilities, but I suspect that if they had the chops for it, they would be able to knock some of the currently running out. On the other hand, chops plus the sense to not get in Hillary’s way or in the middle of the current brawl would look similar.

      2. They’re still maintaining the fiction that someone besides Bloomberg will get the nomination.

        He’s the billionaire who says what they want to hear; the Left’s Trump.

          1. The RNC hated Trump, but he got the nomination anyway. Bloomie won’t even have to work at it; the only reason the Clown Posse are still pretending is so they can continue to milk their campaign funding. Per the Federal Election Commission, just the explicitly permitted uses of such funds is a money tree, not that politicians in general seem to feel bound by “permitted.”

            1. The Democratic Party process works differently than the Republican Party process. The “superdelegates” in the Democratic Party have a degree of influence that could allow them to block a particular nominee that they really don’t like.

              1. Except they’ve apparently changed the rules this year so that the superdelegates don’t get to vote until the convention’s second ballot, which means (presumably) nobody will be counting them during the primaries.

      3. I think one reason Obama has not yet endorsed anyone is to keep option open for Michelle to run. The more she denies interest in running, the more I am inclined to think that the Obama’s are seriously considering it. The Obama’s view themselves as saviors, and I can see them coming in at the last minute to try to “save” the Democrats (they will claim Michelle is running in order to “save: the country. If she runs, all bets are off at best, and at worst, Democrats get the total control of DC that they want and go full tyrant.

        1. If they wanted her to run, she’d be a sitting Senatrix already.
          The chances of successfully getting a Last Second Great White Hope candidate at the convention is a bit like getting a royal flush in poker. Technically, it could happen, but the odds are against it.
          Don’t forget, that by the time the convention comes around, the big money people are literally invested in the frontrunner, and will expect a fair bit of quid pro quo, even if they don’t win.

          1. I wouldn’t deny that M’Shelle has been put up as a possible last-minute nominee … but I honestly don’t see that she’d want to do the work, even the work of being a convincing front. She’s already got all that she and the Beard Obama already got out of their eight years in the WH, fame, fortune and Secret Service protection, and is set for life in no-show, well-paid sinecures. She’s a lazy, racially-resentful, charmless and talent-free performer, whose main claim to fame on a national level is wearing godawful unflattering clothes and providing inedible and nauseating meals to public school students, while her school-age spawn chowed down on chef-prepared meals at an exclusive and very expensive private school.

            1. Kind of like Chelsea Clinton. Both have pretty much the whole world on a platter, and thus no real ambition to condescend into the nasty world of politics.

        2. Well, there is precedent…. /vbeg

          And the campaign commercials write themselves.

          “Michelle 2020: The Past Is Prologue”

          “A wife running as a front for her husband’s third term? Where have we seen that before? Oh yeah!”

          Cut to a screenshot of a Lurleen Wallace campaign poster as AL governor, with the slogan “Let Lurleen run, but let George do it!”

          (Actual history, BTW)

          Then as her face morphs into Michelle and Barack replaces George, we can run through a list of Obama failures and leftist policies. Make sure to include a list of proposals for “whites not allowed” proposals such as segregated dorms with a soundtrack of George’s “Segregation Then, Segregation Now, Segregation Forever!”.

          “Do Americans actually want those policies back?”

          1. If Former President Obama was going to run Michelle as his third term, they would have done it in 2016, most likely as Hillary’s running mate.
            People who are ambitious enough to crave the highest office don’t sit back and wait and hope to be called up at the very last minute. Because there’s a lot of highly ambitious people who are also craving the highest office, and they are going to make damn sure they get the call.

            Do not underestimate the political acumen of Former Vice President Biden. He may look like a genial gaffe prone creepy groper, but he has survived and thrived in the intensely cut throat world of Democratic Party politics. He’s not going to leave any kind of room for someone to just barge in at the last second.

            1. Regarding Biden, on the one hand yeah. On the other hand, he’s looking increasingly incoherent.

              Also, I don’t think the Dems are going to be able to avoid the very understandable conclusions about Hunter Biden and corruption now that the impeachment farce has finally reached the Senate.

              1. Have you heard, the IRS is investigating The Spawn Of Biden for not paying taxes on those bribes he didn’t receive.

              2. We’ll see.
                Again, while he may come across as clumsy and hamfisted bungler in public, he’s pretty adroit at the backroom Machiavelli game.
                And, hey- if the Democrats had any remote ability to actually read what the vast majority of the American people believed, wanted, hope for, ect- would they still be acting like they do? Reality and the Democratic Leadership have not been speaking for a few decades now.

                1. Oh, I have it from several sources that Biden’s just as bad in private, though the Left sources would never be so gauche as to speak ill of him in public, where the truth might help a Republican opponent.

      4. I can see something like 1992, when Bill Clinton was the most ethical candidate the Democrats could put up for President.

        (And, there is zero sarcasm about that. Whatever else Bill Clinton was, he was very good at not being caught.)

        I’m thinking a Bloomberg/Warren ticket, because Bloomberg pretty much has fewer skeletons in his closet and more money in his coffers. Warren offers him the vital “progressive” votes to get nominated.

    1. I’m not sure I’ve ever thought she wasn’t going to be, since late 2016.

      The basic reasoning is that a) the Democrats are really excited, and some of that is being generated purposefully b) there are elements of the in fighting among the Democrats that speak to ‘hidden’ currents, and someone trying to set things up for themselves c) Hillary definitely thinks it is her.

      This thing with Warren? Fits the pattern of trying to take out potential obstacles in Hillary’s path to being ‘drafted’ to run. If it is too obvious, the misogynist Bernie bros will vote Trump again.

      So, me as a data point may depend on how prone you think I am to sorting the data to fit my pet theory.

    2. My observation is no, Hillary is done and spent. Whatever capital she had got used up back in 2016, and buying superdelegates ain’t cheap.

      And while she’s trying to start a “Draft Me!” movement, it’s really not catching fire. Other than the voices in her head, no one is demanding she run again.

      As the old saying goes, ‘follow the money’. If she had the money to win, she’d be able to pay for better crowds for her recent tour.

      While we get a thrill of horror out of the idea (or them drafting Michelle Obama), it’s very very improbable, as improbable as the various crazy scenarios the Ron Paul fans came up with back in 2012.

      1. Takes the nomination, and loses to Trump again is probably a good scenario for us. Does a lot of damage to the eventual nominee, who then loses to Trump, is probably also good.

        If she really is out of her mind, and makes that really obvious going after the nomination, deep down that is going to shape the thinking and feeling of Democrat voters. Might cool their ardor some.

  12. Okay, I concede to thinking that “D’HAUT EN BAS” meant the band-member on bass is sexy” but, in my defense, when I was a kid Paul McCartney and Peter Tork were the most widely seen bass players.

    1. Sigh. Exercising WP Privilege to revise and expand upon my remark, insert quote mark between meant and the: Okay, I concede to thinking that “D’HAUT EN BAS” meant “the band-member on bass is sexy”

      1. Checking my Merriam Webster, I see an entry for de haut en bas: of superiority: of or with condescension. So it’s an English word, like gringo, or quid pro quo, or tsunami, or weltanschauung. MW says de haut en bas is first attested in 1696, which is a respectable age for an English word.

        (This is a common kind of professional question for me. Foreign words are italicized; naturalized words are not italicized. Of course, words can get naturalized pretty quickly these days. When francophones see a foreign word, they say, “Eww, the nasty thing! It probably has fleas. It should be taken to the vet and enthanized.” When anglophones see one, they say, “Aww, it’s cute! Do you think we could give it home?”)

        But I did not know how to pronounce it, which turns out to be “d’ o tã bah.” I would have guessed the t was silent.

        1. Normally the t would be silent, except for a little-known rule of French pronunciation called “liaison”: the rule is that when a normally-silent consonant at the end of a word is followed by a vowel in the next word, the consonant becomes pronounced instead of silent.

          So if you’re saying “the cats”, you say “les chats”: lay chah, roughly. but if you’re saying “the birds”, you say “les oiseaux”: layz wah zoh, pronouncing the s in “les” this time.

          English is difficult for foreigners to learn to pronounce correctly. (It can be understood through tough, thorough thought, though). But French gives English a run for its money.

          1. Actually, I’m aware of liaison, though I tend to call it sandhi. We were taught to pronounce words that way when I studied French, and even to stick in a t when there wasn’t one there already, in the phrase y-a-t-il (“is there?”). I just didn’t realize that it applied in this particular case. But I didn’t mean to suggest that it was incomprehensible; I was thinking “Oh, they do THAT!”

  13. And speaking of putting things over on the Bas:

    https://www.npr.org/2020/01/14/795906732/despite-election-security-fears-iowa-caucuses-will-use-new-smartphone-app

    What could possibly go wrong?

    Also, for a party that claims to be certain that Elite All Powerful Russian Hackers made everyone vote for Trump, they sure are not acting like it, something even NPR notes:

    Iowa’s Democratic Party plans to use a new Internet-connected smartphone app to help calculate and transmit results during the state’s caucuses next month, Iowa Public Radio and NPR have confirmed.

    Party leaders say they decided to opt for that strategy fully aware of three years’ worth of warnings about Russia’s attack on the 2016 presidential election, in which cyberattacks played a central role.

  14. “Don’t let the chorus of ignoramuses silence you.”
    Is the plural of ignoramuses, ignorami?
    As in, “Only ignorami and hippopotami believe in the Illuminati?”

    1. You are correct. The free ice cream — written in the evening, usually after a full day of writing fiction/other administrative stuff, plus often while there are people over — pretty much for free and because I can IS a terrible flavor.
      I should never typo. (Yes, I do have a passing acquaintance with Latin, but I was typing as fast as I could so I could go to bed.) And I should spend my day time hours spell checking everything.
      And of course, if I don’t do that, it’s perfectly okay for trolls to imply I believe in the illuminati.
      Because that’s how we roll out here.
      Are you Andrew Marantz? Embedding in right wing sites, you iz doing it wrong.

      1. Who? I had to Wikipedia Marantz. Never heard of him, and from what little I learned there, I can assure you I ain’t he.

        Mine was facetious criticism. I should have put a 😉 in there. Only my second comment here, I’m still a relative newbie to the site.

        And if you really were an Illuminati (Illuminati?) by now I would have been Epsteined.

        1. Hey, I just did that. The first four books, anyway. Nothing like a Zombie Apocalypse to restore your perspective; the Democrats aren’t quite that bad. At least, I don’t think they can turn you with a bite.

          Mindless, violent unwashed cannibals, those I’ll grant you.
          ———————————
          If the ‘progressives’ truly believe that “Money can’t buy happiness” why are they so determined to take mine?

            1. You speak of the illustrious illiterate Secretary Of Education?

              Maybe she was just a little bit infected? Got bit by a zombie, and the zombie died?
              ———————————
              Always, ALWAYS have a Plan O — for Oh Shit!

        2. Good thing we’ve got a President who has been cutting tons of red tape, and who’ll be ruthless enough to implement quarantine measures as needed, instead of a drugged-out zombie, eh?

          -Albert

  15. One very clear thing is that those who are good at the Machiavellian insider backstabbing game tend to be pretty lousy at actually leading. Dominating a small and connected group of insiders is way different than leading a large and diverse group of people.
    So, people like Nancy, Hillary, LBJ, Prince Von Bulow, and others tend to come across as clumsy and hamfisted bunglers at the top, because the methods that worked to get them into power don’t work when in power.
    And it’s a good thing.

  16. Since someone already mentioned the theological condescending angle, one thought:
    “Take the prisoners downstairs,” Tom said condescendingly.

  17. Well, ain’t this interesting:

    A backstop to American sanctions: Hezbollah a terrorist group, Latin American allies say
    U.S. allies in Latin America cracked down this week on Hezbollah, designating the Iranian proxy force a foreign terrorist organization.

    “This is all part of a concerted effort on Hezbollah that we see these outcomes right now,” a Middle East official told the Washington Examiner. “Hezbollah is very active in Latin America, so the impact is very, very significant in that sense.”

    Colombia and Honduras blacklisted the Iranian proxy in conjunction with a Monday meeting of the Western Hemisphere Counterterrorism Ministerial in Bogota, Columbia, just days after Guatemala took the same step. The three designations, issued one year after Argentina commemorated the 25th anniversary of a Hezbollah terrorist attack in Buenos Aires, broadens the reach of President Trump’s maximum pressure campaign against Iran.

    1. Hezbollah is very active in Latin America? Huh. First thought: I did not know that. Second thought: Why? What benefit do they hope to derive? Evil organizations are usually rational (the irrational ones don’t tend to last long), and don’t invest large amounts of effort into a plan unless they think the payoff will be worth it. What kind of geopolitical payoff do they expect to derive from terrorizing Latin American countries?

      1. It’s not JUST a political payoff they are after. It’s fulfilling their religious duty to spread Islam. NEVER omit that as a motivation, because they won’t.

        Then there’s the financial aspects; collecting jizya from the drug trade will be highly lucrative.

          1. So do a lot of people on the right. That includes a lot of believers,

            We’re not used to expressing openly a belief and acting on it.

          2. It’s easier to be a true believer when that happens to put you in the upper ranks of a pyramid scheme. Commiescum Party Member, Muslim collecting jizya from dhimmocrats, etc.

            -Albert

          1. There’s a very strong subtext in Islam that “The unbelievers should be happy to support us in return for their lives”; witness the rise of various imams (especially in the UK) preaching that no Muslim should be ashamed of getting all the government benefits they can; all they are doing is their religious obligation to collect jizya / dhimmi tax from the infidel.

      2. South American culture plus the drug trade makes them weak enough to be potentially vulnerable.

        Plus, the drug trade is access to infiltrating terrorists into America.

        I think I’ve known about Hezbollah since at latest the immigrant invasions of the 2018 elections.

      3. Why is REALLY easy Robin. If you’re in Latin America the Great Satan (remember Hezbollah is Iran’s baby) is
        (until recently) easily reachable. So the Latin American countries make an excellent staging area for future Jihadis.
        Also as time goes on and the Latin American Catholic church goes more and more liberal (can you say liberation theology?) the locals find less and less attachment. They want a religion that requires something of them. Voila Islam.
        Not a lot, but 19 guys can cause a LOT of trouble. and a native latin american spanish speaking jihadi would probably fly well underneath the radar.

  18. I note that large chunks of the UK working class rejected the “more free stuff” platform last year. The opinion polls suggested a lot of them like the idea of “free stuff” to an extent but didn’t believe that the Labour party would actually deliver that free stuff – or at least not deliver it without causing far more trouble in other respect.

    I suspect a lot of working minorities in the US are going to make similar calculations and thus vote for the Orange one.

    1. You can only promise for so long. Eventually, you got to deliver.
      And what most of the free stuff that has been delivered comes with generous helpings of bureaucrats, red tape, more bureaucrats, paperwork, long waits, rejections, more red tape, more long waits, patronizing from bureaucrats, stuff that’s broken, indifference from bureaucrats, and the rest of the Kafkaian nightmare that is bureaucracy.

  19. “But Louis the XIV settled their hash. He constructed his court in such a way and build and arranged things in such a way that most noblemen couldn’t afford not to dance attendance on him, and yet dancing attendance on him was financially ruinous, which meant they need to dance attendance on him more than ever. ”

    You’ve just explained NYC, Hollywood, San Francisco…

    1. Keep that in mind around the holidays, when the Clickbait Serfs write their various passive aggressive screeds about how family/ holidays/ kids/ whatever are a terrible waste of time.
      One can almost smell the cat urine and cheap box chardonnay of their cold, lonely lives through the pixels.

            1. “What did they expect when they deliberately made it the wrong tense?”
              Or to self-applied a label so full of pretentious, smug self-congratulations?

  20. Ok its time for one of my infamous mini rants, based on three different comment threads above:

    The state government of California is trying to KILL the film industry in CA.

    That’s the only way i can explain it. They’re trying to chase it off, and the portion that doesn’t run off they are trying to beat it until it stops moving.

    From opposing every effort to rewrite the state tax credits into a form more suited to modern productions, simply because they were proposed by the filthy republican (Schwarzenegger) (basically there’s a $100 million allotment and the cap is set to a $50 million budget, so the entire tax credit pool is gone sometime around the second week of January- the numbers were set when a $50 mill budget was HUGE… this means it is cheaper to film in other STATES, much less Canada)

    Then to this new contract worker BULLSHIT, that is ostensibly aimed at Uber drivers but in truth is going to significantly impact most of the film industry AND video game industry still in CA because MOST OF THE FILM INDUSTRY IS CONTRACT WORKERS, including about 65% of VFX and game artists, and a lot of the film support crew (gaffers grips etc etc, esp on non-union productions…)

    *pauses until his nostrils stop flaring*

    Anyway, they are idiots and are almost completely done chasing the industry out of the state. There’s a reason that Digital Domain and ILM both have offices in Vancouver.

    1. It’s not a particularly far step, as far as that goes. It’s been prohibitively expensive to film in Cali for a long while now. The old & familiar “mountains of Illinois” have long since been laid off and replaced by the prairies of Alberta.

      1. And more recently, despite efforts of the crazy Hollywood snot crowd regarding abortion laws, the hills of Georgia. (I note that, despite the epic tantrum throwing awhile back, I haven’t actually heard of ANY of the tv production companies leaving Georgia. Whose state government, after all, is dangling very enticing things that make it profitable to film there, and since abortion laws don’t actually have anything to DO with 99.9% of filming…)

    2. Rants are OK. Holding it in raises your blood pressure. There’s a reason serial killers are always ‘the quiet ones’.
      ———————————
      “Let me guess. He was quiet, right?”
      “What? No! He was loud, rude, grumpy and ornery — I figured he must be OK!”

  21. Pingback: APPARENTLY THERE WAS SOMETHING IN THE AIR: HERE’S SARGENT MOM’S TAKE: The New Versailles. AND … – The usa report

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