Making Your Guts Into New Heart

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There was something grandma said when you said “My heart is broken.”

“Make your guts into a new heart, and go on.”

Humans are …. complex. We’re not precisely one thing or the other.  For instance, even when I wrote eight hours a day, every day, I wrote in the wave of my inspiration. You see, I had trained inspiration to come on cue.  (And because I usually wrote on Saturdays, if we went on vacation, I still got the inspiration on Saturdays, which is why I have to ton of stuff to type in scribbled on multiple hotel note pads, napkins, paper towels and toilet paper.

But when it all breaks: when I’m sick and tired and despairing, I can write from rational thought, and, once or twice out of pure malice and spite (hint, malice and spite don’t make for my best books. BUT they do get them done.)

I’ve been accused many times — accused being the right term — on this blog of being an optimist.

I’m not.  I’m actually a dark, despairing pessimist, which feeds wonderfully into my depressive tendencies.

Because I don’t want to die — or worse, live in utter despair and destroy the lives of those around me with the gloomy cloud of despair — I’ve spent most of my life since I was fourteen or so doing what I call “reality checking.”

“It’s not that bad/can’t get that bad, because look, there’s this.  And this won’t work the way it does in your brain. And–”

When you get all those posts you say have cheered you up, or where people come to yell at me for being an optimist they are the result of a dark night of the soul.  I trolled the depths, and from the depths I brought THIS.

This is why I tend to avoid, like the plague, both horror stories and the sort of despairing thriller where you fight and fight and fight and in the end it’s maybe slightly better, but not much. Or you become what you have fought.  That is the NORMAL pattern my mind tries to make. i had to train myself out of it.

So I’m very very good at seeing the light at the end of the tunnel and determining it’s not an oncoming train.

And guys, I’m having trouble. Real trouble.

I look at “70% of the country” including places like Texas and Utah will be voting by mail.  And I know what happens with fraud by mail. And early fraud, and all the various corruptions of “voting” that are not on the day, after you registered a month earlier, at a verified address (you know, the sort of thing they make you do to get a checking account, say?) and on paper, and then carefully watched.  All of those, btw, are run by the same people now demanding vote by mail, to save them from a (granted particularly severe) variation of the cold virus. Which mostly kills people over 80 who are already in poor health. (To be fair, just about anything kills them.)

And I don’t see how we turn this.

And everything the left is doing, in their spiraling insanity seems to confirm it.  Kamala? Biden? That necrotic convention? The idiot rumors about Trump (possibly personally) stealing mailboxes? All of it adds up to “We’re just making it credible enough that Biden wins. We have the votes taken care of. It’s in the bag. Like the communist countries of old, we don’t even have to run a credible show.”

And I can’t do anything.  I’ve tried.  G-d knows I tried. Years ago — 2012? — when I first talked about how all those “conveniences” in voting increased fraud, I got ON THIS BLOG a barrage of “You just hate me and don’t want me to vote because I have to work.” Or “I love voting by mail. It’s so convenient.”  And of course, the usual idiots said I was against the military voting, apparently failing to see the difference between unavoidable, carefully watched situations, and just mailing out ballots to every person, cat, dog and imaginary character at an address.  I tried to point out because of motor voter a lot of permanent residents THINK they can (and should) vote. Because no one explains you have to be a citizen. Or insist on registering you even if you show as ID, say, a Japanese passport as has happened.

Now no one is saying any of that when I mention fraud by mail and early fraud. But now it’s too late. Most states have same-day registration. The early vote tells the left how many new voters to register, even if their names are Mickey Mouse and Milk Jug.

And because crooked election after crooked election was accepted, so long as the left does a little dance and pretends they have massive support, and the press sings along in the choir, well….  How do you dispute one? Will anyone even dispute one? Even try to? Or will the right be afraid of the mythical “uprising of the people” if they do?

I don’t know if it’s the circumstances of this horrible year, but I feel myself future blind.  I usually have a sense of what’s coming assembled by my (despite myself) rational processes beneath the surface.

I don’t now.

I don’t see past the beginning of November. If the left wins, the country as we know it will be gone within a year.  And if you think that’s impossible contemplate what they’ve done to our cities and states in five months. FIVE MONTHS.

They want to open borders wide and confiscate and redistribute property.  After that, there is no America.  And like with NYC (which I always loved, despite everything) there is no coming back from that. The people themselves will be broken.  Why create, start, work really hard, dream, do anything, when it can all be taken away at a whim?  The East Germans haven’t recovered. Russia… well, Russia is Russia.  But America, put through that won’t be America. Whatever emerges on the other side will be just a country of serfs. In my dark hours I think we’re halfway there.

And don’t tell me we can rebel and fight. Guys, we can’t go to the store without masks.  The left revived their monopoly on information in the shutdown. By trying to get information on the plague, they are glued to the TV night and day, and even though it’s lies and frankly outright nonsense, people are being gaslit into believing them.  Which is why the panic fear of the unmasked person, and the mob that forms at grocery stores to form an asthmatic to mask up. Even though masks — if they do anything — are a net negative, and the virus is nowhere near as lethal as advertised.

We’re back to where we were in the seventies and eighties, where if the right commits any violence (even violent words) they are the aggressors, and evil bad, and must be destroyed. Look at the whole “your words are violence.” Hell, even our silence is violence. Even their violence is our violence. Look at what they did to JFK’s assassination. That’s what they’ll do to any (real) resistance.

Grandma said to make your guts into a new heart and I’ve been trying.  It’s not working markedly well.

I’ve started feeling all those symptoms of stress that I used to have when I knew the publisher was doing his/her best to bury my books, no matter what I did, and that I couldn’t fight back.

It ties in with all the symptoms of stress from my growing up years, where I also could do nothing.

I need to make my guts into a new heart. I need to–  Well, at the very least I need not to worry my family. Getting flooring done and books written would also help.

But I think I went through my guts last time I had to forge a new heart. I have nothing.  And though I see that what they’re destroying is mostly their own fields, and though I know they can’t keep their insane regime forever, I’m afraid they can do it long enough to destroy us.

The loss of wealth, health and ultimately life these past five months, not from Covid-19 but from the stupid attempts to destroy us, disguised as attempts to stop the virus, is incalculable. It might be more than all the wars of the twentieth century, worldwide.

And the loss of American spirit is far, far worse than that.

I want to believe we come back. I want to believe we recover. I want to believe this insane clown posse of grifters and corruptocrats (anyone notice this started JUST as the whole Russiagate was about to be nailed to Obama’s tail? Or that everyone running this crazy psiops on the virus has their pockets filled by China?) will be gone after this last final spasm.

But I’m holding on by my fingernails, while I look at the election approaching and a massive Game Over blinks in my head.

I need you for a reality check. I need you to be the optimists for me.

My guts are worn out. May I borrow yours?

572 thoughts on “Making Your Guts Into New Heart

  1. If I had any left I would give them.

    However, I no longer believe I will live to see the end of masks.

    One big reason I can’t write is “what’s the point”? I don’t even have a reliable first reader despite having both a wife and a leather girl. My goal of building up enough indie to “retire” to a final career as indie writer at 59 1/2 (when I can use the retirement funds as a bridge) is gone in the knowledge that before 58 we’ll have leveled so we are all equal animals and, because of my skin color, penis, sexual orientation, religion, and politics, I’ll be one of the least equal animals. As The Gulag Archipelago points out, the criminals were allowed to rule over the political prisoners in the camps.

    I have long hated the phrase, “on the right side of history”. I have long worried the idea of freedom is on the wrong side of history. It has existed, as a realized concept, maybe 15% of the time since the birth of Christ, mostly imperfect and for a minority of the world’s population.

    Perhaps we are the fated to be the last generation of free people.

    Sorry I have no encouraging words, but I have none.

    I will, however, offer up my favorite picture of my boys. They, more than anything, keep me engaged in the world. They are the last thing I will fight to keep.

    https://photos.google.com/photo/AF1QipPlz97vbtft0S3siUWMgPEs5Eoz0arW13MLcH6E

    1. I’m starting to think that I need to have masks in my stories, which would be so ridiculous. We need to read people’s faces. It’s profoundly important. Humans are social animals.

      On the other hand, for a while it started to seem impossible to write near future science fiction because of the assumption of ubiquitous monitoring and the death of cash. If your heroes are on the run, how do they buy gas or a burger without their faces on camera and their movements tracked? While it’s awful for people who can’t wear masks, the rest of us might find the fashion ends up being a good way to thwart the omnipresent surveillance State. And if anyone else is like me, regular people aren’t looking at you either. If we’re all avoiding eye contact because of a subliminal discomfort from being denied facial expression, who’s going to be able to describe you to authorities?

      1. Especially if they take up Fauci’s recommendation to wear goggles…

        My Steampunk Plague Doctor mask already has that covered.

      2. Bigheads have been talking about ‘the cashless society’ for as long as I’ve been paying any attention. The cold fact remains that unless cashless transfers can offer some anonymity, it won’t happen. The economic crash that wiping out anonymous transactions (the black and grey markets) would cause wold make the shutdowns look like a hiccup. I’ve read estimates that the black and grey markets are equal in size to the whole of the ‘legitimate’ economy.

        The Fascist Left may cream their underoos over the idea, but their grasp of actual economics is feeble at best. And the system they so ardently wish to impose on us works even LESS than it otherwise would without a black market.

        1. A friend of mine used to say, “There’ll always be cash; how else will you pay off politicians?”

          Alas, times have changed. Now you just pay them for a speech, or a ghostwritten book, or donate to their charitable foundation. from which they’re allowed to take entirely reasonable salary and expenses totalling, basically, all of it. And far from envelopes of money presented in shadows, they’re likely to issue press releases bragging about it, just to show they have the blat and you don’t, and to show their peers that they have power.

          * In Russian, blat (Russian: блат) is a form of corruption which is the system of informal agreements, exchanges of services, connections, Party contacts, or black market deals to achieve results or get ahead.

          1. “from which they’re allowed to take entirely reasonable salary and expenses totalling, basically, all of it.”

            As long as you’re a Democrat. As Steve Bannon is finding out.

            The best reason to have that civil war is that nothing else, even a President, can or will remove our two-tiered legal system.

  2. Puddleglum.

    Make Puddleglum your spirit animal.

    All you’ve been saying is quite right, I shouldn’t wonder. I’m a chap who always liked to know the worst and then put the best face I can on it. So I won’t deny any of what you said. But there’s one thing more to be said, even so.

      1. That. Cat’s. DEATHGLARE.

        “I am on TV and I do not like it. The only reason these hands are not shredded is because they are literally the hands that feed me.”

        1. And she’s on Instagram.

          Links there to official merch that supports the clinic that had her prior to adoption.

          And thank you for engaging about Cinderblock. That brightened my day.

          1. Thank you for sharing her!

            When I read the comment about “Cinderblock is my spirit animal” I was picturing a T-shirt with a cartoon of an actual gray 8-shape cinder block that had that caption.

            She is much cuter.

            (You might like “This Cat is Chonky” on Facebook. It’s really mostly fluffy cats, I would guess the reason it got started is those idiots who see any cat that isn’t skin and bones and scream about how you’re killing it by over-feeding. They do enforce the no scolding, too!)

            1. And joined.

              George is turning into a little gray Chonk…then again, I know he is supplementing his diet. I’m just not sure if it is all self caught or if conning neighbors is involved.

              1. We’ve always had unlimited kibble in a big bowl for our cats. It’s the canned that is regulated. Yet we’ve had cats who hunted. Didn’t eat what they hunted, but they did. We’ve also had a cat, two, or three, who’ve conned the neighbors into leaving kibble on back porches. When they mentioned they are feeding a “stray with a collar” and show pictures. We just sigh loudly, & say “Stop. You are being conned. No wonder his/her allergies are acting up …” (Never had a cat until they got super old where food mattered, we just preferred brands we know doesn’t come from China regardless of what the packaging says. Saying the cat is on specialized diet for allergies gets their attention & compliance.) We’ve also never had a fat cat. Big ones, but you could feel ribs (fluffy hair prevented seeing ribs), was not overweight. Just a big long legged, long bodied, cats.

                1. Oh, gads, the vet that I STILL miss, on meeting Fluffy:
                  Gets a big scowl on his face, starts the exam– expression clears up. “This cat is not fat.”

                  Just huge. 😀

                2. We do the same, unlimited kibble and regulated canned. I rarely see George eat the kibble, but I find animal parts now and then around the carport.

                  His brother does catch stuff, but I haven’t seen him bring it home as often, so I just assume most of the parts I see are George creations, not Sable.

                  1. (Submitted primarily to cheer up Herbn)

                    My much-missed Fat Cat *was*, well, fat. Maine Coon, so he would’ve been big regardless, but he was 30 pounds when he should’ve been 22 to 25.

                    But he was sweet, and communicative, and monumentally Dumb. We had to take him to the vet repeatedly for a weird semi-illness when he was about a year old, and that was long enough for even *his* dense little brain to realize that having his temperature taken was…less than pleasant. For the next 12 years of his life he would hiss at anybody in a lab coat, even if he’d spent the five minutes prior to lab-coating happily flirting with the wearer thereof.

                    At 13 we took him in to a new vet for a minor kidney issue. Little bitty 5’1″ woman dealing with a BIG CHONK OF CAT. She listened to the lab coat warning, nodded agreeably, took off the lab coat and made her assistant put it on. Fat Cat proceeded to menace the assistant so sincerely that he never noticed the vet checking his temperature. And then she scooped him up and marched him off for a blood test, with his forelegs splayed over her arm, the hind legs dangling somewhere just north of her knee, and the most befuddled look I have ever seen on a feline face.

                3. Now that our youngest cat is a year old, we’re going to have to go to a lower-calorie food because one of our cats is a CHONK. He also has a very small head in proportion to his body (it’s not just the illusion, it’s actually small for his frame), so he’s pretty bonkers.

                  Oddly enough, he’s also the most active of our cats, and has quite visible muscles in his shoulders. But he’s PEAR-SHAPED.

                4. We think we’ve finally figured out what was bothering Sara (the Lab-Aussie with a delicate pancreas) in the morning. She was eating her kibble and canned food very slowly in the morning, so we added what we thought were low-fat biscuits. Turns out those are 5% minimum fat, while the rest of the stuff is 2.5% maximum, and more biscuits meant a queasy stomach.

                  So now, it’s the very low fat canned, cooked rice, while reintroducing the low fat kibble. Working so far, and she actually likes the kibble.

                  I hope this works; Sara’s had a rough time of it for a few days now, and she’s now somewhat underweight. (Hard to get the calories with low fat food.)

                  1. My 22#, s/b 16#, Pom/Chi, was put on a diet, 3 months ago. First weigh in, on the low fat metabolic diet? 25#’s. She won’t eat the kibble unless I hand feed it to her. So use that for training treats. Veterinarian is sympathetic. All three of us, our systems essentially go “Diet? Well poo to that!” Every ounce off is a hard won ounce.

                    1. Sara had been running at 50 pounds (right weight), but the last weigh in was at 46. She loves the taste of biscuits, but they were wrecking her GI system and irritating the pancreas. Took a while to figure that out.

                      We’ll be feeding her a mix of Royal Canin lowfat canned and RC very lowfat kibble. As we’re getting her back to good health (at 15, she doesn’t bounce back quickly), there’s a tablespoon of cooked rice heated in a bit of water with the RC stuff. We’re ramping up the kibble and will probably (maybe, we’ll see) cut the rice back out.

                      We had to hand feed breakfast with the biscuits mixed in. Didn’t realize it was upset tummy until a few days ago, but without the biscuits, she’ll eat well.

                      I don’t know how long she’ll be with us; seeing her up and moving is A Good Thing. Combined with a waggy tail, that’s A Great Thing.

              2. Havelock is a chonkey butt. I’m going to open up to zoom meetings/readings once a week. You guys will see him. He gets on my lap and touches my face imploringly….. It’s cute and disturbing.
                Of course, his breed (or at least one of his parent’s breed tends to die around 13/14 of diabetes. He’s 12. His next trip to the vet will involve “how do we control the chonk?”

                1. FWIW, when Fat Cat developed diabetes, our vet’s suggestion was “cheapest canned food you can find”. Apparently the bargain-basement stuff actually has a higher proportion of MEAT, as long as you don’t ask about the provenance of said meat. Fewer fillers and flavorings and all the stuff that the hoomans buy to feel like they’re pampering their cats. We put him on the grody stuff and it helped immensely.

                2. We’ve been using Royal Canin (Low fat, Gastrointestinal) for Sara, but I’ve seen that they do kitty foods too. I would *not* recommend on-line ordering; rather cheaper to buy from the vet supply outfit.

                  The kibble is a bit expensive, but the canned isn’t too bad. Cheaper than frequent vet visits, anyway.

                3. Had to take my cat to the vet today. Turns out he’s got a gall bladder infection. Antibiotic, appetite stimulant, 2 kinds of probiotics to settle his innards. Also needs dental cleaning when he’s feeling better. Could have been a LOT worse.

                  He’s a medium hair Birman mix, pretty mellow. Likes to curl up beside you, or crawl under a blanket and just be a lump.

                  Vet is running curb-drop-off ONLY. Can’t even go in the lobby to fill out paperwork. #)@*&$!#% Political Plague Theater!!

                  1. We had that in Oregon during Act I of COVID theater. Couldn’t go into the store area for the vet practice/supply, but they’d take my card and give me a dozen dog food cans. (Had bags in the truck. Whew!)

                    Kate seems to be starting to figure out that she can’t bully everybody, especially us Deplorables east of the Cascades. “Never issue an order that you know won’t be obeyed.” She’s truly despicable, but she’s not as mind-meltingly stupid as some.

                    1. We had that in Oregon during Act I of COVID theater. Couldn’t go into the store area for the vet practice/supply, but they’d take my card and give me a dozen dog food cans.


                      Still have this west of the cascades, at least in the valley. Won’t vouch for coast of further south on I-5. Fourth visit for the kittens to the Veterinarian was today. Last round of vaccinations & rabies. Amber is 4#s. Copper is 5.6#s, at 3 1/2 months. Next trip is in 2 1/2 months for their surgeries. Have to pickup pup’s prescription food too (would get script and get it at Petsmart, but while more convenient, not less expensive).

                    2. I’m in Medford for the retina routine (I hope it stays that way) followup. It’s like another country compared to flyover Klamath County. As best as I could tell, one(!) other person was wearing their mask with exposed nostrils. At home, it’s 20-30% and considerably higher in places like Home Depot.

                      Trader Joes has a strick queue system to get into the store, and places like [redacted] have cleaning/sanitizing station that their fellow stores don’t at home.

                      America’s least favorite game show (actually a tie for “Watch the goalposts move”) is “What’s in stock?” Costco can’t get the tomato paste we’ve been buying regularly (we got it because it was low-salt; I’m at least somewhat salt-sensitive. Sigh) and the worker bee said it’s been that way for a looong time. OTOH, that was the major surprise; other products were in short supply or out of stock a few months before Kung Flu got popular.

                      any yeah, Homewood Suites isn’t as well set up for computing as the Hilton, but the restaurant at the Hilton is stuck at “trying to open”. If I have to scrounge meals, I’ll do the cooking…

              3. BTW since he loves and adores food, I don’t think that’s practical. But he’s curious and biddable and will do anything to be with mom. So I’m thinking, you know, a harness and walks might work. At least Spring and summer. Being outdoor is not good because eagles love white cats. And he’s too stupid to avoid coyotes.

                1. >> “And he’s too stupid to avoid coyotes.”

                  Give him the mirror test one of these days. You said ALL your other cats managed it (despite the odds), so I’m curious to know if he’s up to it.

                  1. I don’t know. Sometimes I think he’s Carrot.
                    His latest? I was looking at videos of turkish angoras, which is what he looks like. He was Passionately interested and didn’t move. Except with the kittens, he turned to me and meowed a question. I said “Baby Haveys” And he turned back and watched QUIETLY.
                    Not sure what it means.

                    1. “Geez, Mom, I know you told the blog you wanted to clone me but I didn’t know you’d already done it.”

            2. Hmm. I may need to join that one. My cat is a 30lb chonky boi–and truth is, he’s probably only about 6 or 7 pounds overweight…

              And he resists all efforts to make him diet (he steals the dogs’ food) or exercise (he is the laziest beast in creation). I worry about his mobility a little bit, but he gets up and down the stairs fine, can really book it across the yard if he feels he must, and…I honestly really love his huge fluffy belly (which he adores having rubbed) 😀

              1. GiganCat got hefty once. So we put him on diet food. Worked great. He refused to touch it, and lost two pounds, then started eating it and lost two more. That was enough. (Slimmed down from 26 to 20 eventually. With the muscles he’d had at the higher weight. He could JUMP!)

                1. One of the cats in the neighborhood seems to have decided that I should help him/her. Every time I go by his house, he comes and cries at me, wants to be petted, and then doesn’t want me to leave. He has plenty of meat on his bones and doesn’t seem to be thirsty. He actually patted the back of my leg as I was walking away down the sidewalk, this afternoon.

                  There are tons of other cats in the neighborhood, and they are friendly. His people are friendly. I don’t get it.

                  1. Sometimes it seems cats just take a look at a person–even if it’s not one of “their” humans–and go “I adore this person.”

                    And then there’s my cat, who I know loves me best, but is generally a shameless hussy when it comes to ALL humans, and is of the opinion that every human he meets should rub his belly and scratch his head. (Have I mentioned that I’m fairly certain that Italics is actually a reincarnated dog…? Specifically a yellow lab of the lazy, adores everyone type…)

          1. I’ve always been grateful that for the most part my Fat Cat has no desire to sit on laps/lie on people. He’ll cuddle up to your side, and he likes getting picked up and hugged (and will even hug back), but otherwise prefers to stay off the peoples.

            1. Yeah we had one cat called Mac. Hey was a BIG cat, and a bit on the chonky side 22 lbs, paws the size of quarters, he was a mutt but the biggest darn cat I’ve ever seen short Maine Coon Show cats. He’d position himself across your throat and then cover your nose with his paws to get your attention in the morning if he felt breakfast was late (and he pretty much felt ALL meals were always late).

              1. Our big cats weren’t Maine Coons long enough maybe, but not bulky or fluffy enough, even tho they had long hair. Most they weighed were 18#s, and relatively slender for their lengths. Note, at 18#s that is twice the other cats weights. One cat, the one we lost in last November was tiny in comparison. People continually asked when she turned a year, her entire 20+ years, because she looked like a kitten until the end (she never weighed more than 7#s). I think Amber might be that way too. OTOH Lil Bits or Minnie, was named that because she was the smallest of her sisters. She’s kind of out grown that name. She weighs 9.5#s, & is quite long, by no means a small cat. So who knows.

              2. I think mine has SOME Maine Coon–he’s got the tufts of fur between his toes, and (teeny tiny) little tufts on his ears, although he’s a medium hair. But he’s also a ginger tabby, and I’ve heard they–more than most other cat “colors”–are likely to be a genetic throwback to their distant, desert cat ancestors. (My mom had a ginger tabby when she was a kid who was probably as big–although unlike my cat, this one was 30lbs of muscle, as he was never fixed, heh.) I have no idea how much truth their is to that, but given that average Maine Coon size is around 15 pounds, and mine’s non-fat weight would STILL probably be between 22-24 pounds…he’s just a damn big cat. His brother–“skinny” and incredibly athletic (he liked to sneak up on magpies, startle them, and then jump on them when they were about eight feet in the air, and break a wing on them before they ever hit the ground)–was still a full fifteen pounds. (I miss him.)

                And yeah, his paws are huge. At least quarter sized, but likely bigger. (I may have to see if he will tolerate me holding a quarter up to his toebeans to check this evening, lol!)

                1. .) I have no idea how much truth their is to that, but given that average Maine Coon size is around 15 pounds, and mine’s non-fat weight would STILL probably be between 22-24 pounds…he’s just a damn big cat.

                  He might have bobcat blood. Our boys do, and they’re about that size, also having the fur-feet and ear thingie. (They are tuxedoes, though.)

                  “Experts” are still doing the pissing matches over the whole “bobcats always eat domestic cats!” thing, even after they’ve watched bobcats and domestic cats mate if there’s a female in heat. If they follow the pattern of CoyDogs, it’ll be recognized in the next five-ten years and they’ll try to act like there was never any doubt.

                  1. also a ginger tabby, and I’ve heard they–more than most other cat “colors”–are likely to be a genetic throwback to their distant, desert cat ancestors

                    He might have bobcat blood. Our boys do, and they’re about that size, also having the fur-feet and ear thingie.


                    Our two big boys were a ginger tabby, long hair. And a coal black long hair. Emmy (black cat), waggles hand, but Yeller (we hadn’t planned on keeping him, but …), always swore he had some type of native wild cat genes. We had Emmy’s brother, Chris, who wasn’t as big as Emmy. Still a good sized cat but not oversized.

                    Yeller was long enough to reach from the floor to reach top of dining table, & see what was there. He’d put his front feet on the chair, leave back feet on floor, switching tail, look to see if there was anything on the table worth jumping up for. All our other cats, including Emmy, had to at least get on a chair to do get high enough to see what was on the table was worth getting yelled at for getting up there. Most the others had to just risk the wrath of those of us with two feet for jumping up on the table to check out what might be there.

                    1. Fluffy isn’t quite that big, but we do have a picture of him at 2 years old looking over the edge of the baby’s bassinette to discover what this terrifying creature was.
                      Can reach the top of the table, can get his nose up to look, can’t see on top of the plates.

                    2. Posted to Sarah’s Diner FB so hopefully you can see. We have other pictures, but we’ve got to digitize them. One of the test slide to digital.

                    3. Eh, I like the Diner at MeWe, but we’ll see.

                      My tolerance for being the one stuck being a peace maker is utterly gone, especially when I’ve never been willing to lie to do it.

                    4. I’ve never checked out Sarah’s Diner. What’s it like over there? It sounds like you ladies had trouble…

                    5. Whatever it was, I missed it …

                      I’ll post the pictures on WeMe too, for those there. It is a comparison of Yeller & our son not long after birth. Even semi curled, you can tell the cat is longer than the baby. Baby that was 22″ at birth.

                2. Mac was not a Ginger Tabby. He was a black and white cap and saddle (Think Holstein patterned cat). Neither his ears nor his general fur were of that Maine Coon fluff and tuftiness. His fur was plushy, so that he felt more like a high quality stuffed animal than like a cat. And yes he had the fur between the toe beans. So much so that he was notorious for jumping up on things like our faux marble kitchen island and sliding off the other side due to traction issues.

                  Maine coons can be immense 15 lbs may be average, but standard deviation has got to be 2-3 pounds. There was one Orange Tabby male I saw at a show that was likely bigger than Mac, he looked part lynx. Gorgeous marble pattern, deep red/orange, emerald eyes. And he loved the Judges. He was rolling and purring as they tried to judge and handle him. Very gentle especially given he was an intact male, they can be a bit hard to handle. Had a really deep basso profundo rumble of a purr that seemed wholly appropriate. That you could hear that purr 20’+ back from the judging table was a testimony to how loud it was.

    1. And apparently Word press *may* have eaten my post, or this may be post 3.0…

      Summary is, I suspect Trump will win amyways, and the Left will declare that he actually lost and call for, and attempt, his violent overthrow. To many of their leadership is in to much trouble if he wins and is able to prosecute. Likewise, I fully expect a Harris administration to impose a bloody crack down on conservatives if they gain power. So, ultimately, we are not making a choice between living or dying; that die has already been cast, and is long gone. The choice now is only what we choose to stand for when it all comes down. Do we die with our candles held high, or die with them smothered in darkness?

      That’s the thing about Puddleglum. He does not care whether he wins or loses; that is just what he believes in and will live and die for, and no talking up a lamp is going to be able to replace that.

      So, write your books. Let publishing them be someone else’s problem.

      1. Summary is, I suspect Trump will win amyways, and the Left will declare that he actually lost and call for, and attempt, his violent overthrow.

        Not a bad conclusion.

        1. Wasn’t mine. Scott Adams started predicting it once he spotted CNN running tons of new stories about how Trump might not accept the results of the election and would need to be removed by force.

          They’re prepping their base for it already, and given no-one got penalized for the coup they tried during this term, there is no reason for them not to do it again, but harder.

        2. They are already planning on doing exactly that. It is no accident that the one scenario they “wargamed” that has military intervention is one where Trump wins and Democrats dispute the election results and seek to remove him. It is very clear the post office hysteria and the daily pronouncements by the Democratic Party’s senior leadership and their media arm that Trump is trying to “sabotage” the election that the Democrats have already decided that if they lose they will not accept the results, and that if they can’t win, they intend to muddy up the waters enough to make a Trump victory look illegitimate. This will be on a scale that far exceeds the Democrat’s Russia hoax.

          Simply put, the Democrats have gone all in on achieving absolute power and intend to gain it by any means necessary no matter what happens in the election.

          I just don’t see this ending well.

          1. The interesting thing is, I went and dug around in what happens if the election isn’t resolved by the 20th, and it turns out it goes to the Congress for a vote, but the vote is by state. Each state gets one vote, and the winner becomes president. And a majority of states have majority Republican representatives.

            It appears, even if they screw up enough ballots to tank the election, we will still end up with a lawfully elected president regardless of whether Harris concedes or not.

            Turns out highly redundant systems are quite resilient…

            1. You actually TRUST the Republicans to vote FOR Trump?????
              I don’t. The Republicans have been without a backbone and never have really stood up to the Democrats. They have always sold us out, always! They will not change.

              1. Whoa there. Back off a bit. There as a reason for the sell out before the new media. THey were in an invidious position, and to an extent could only win by losing.
                The older ones seem to have internalized this. BTW you see the exact same thing in every field they took over. Even “right wing” publishing houses aren’t really.
                BUT the young ones show promise. Cruz turned on a dime and has had Trump’s back, for instance.

          2. I’m convinced that the Demonrats screaming, “TRUMP’S GONNA STEAL THE ELECTION!!!” is to dilute the impact of the actual vote stealing they are going to be doing come November.

    2. I have long wondered about this spirit animal thing. Nothing of it has come to me by conscious thought, logic, dream, or otherwise. I must therefore conclude that either I simply do not have such a thing, or I am my own spirit animal – as strange as that would be.

            1. Somewhere, a man in dire straights thinks desperately, “What would Orvan do?” In a flash in insight, he has his answer. Aloud, he cries: “Moo!”

              Then he realizes that didn’t actually help him and considers changing spirit animals. 😛

                    1. [suspicious look]

                      Are you suggesting there’s a bovine political moooovement?

                      Lady, you’re full of bull.

                    2. Dang, your ‘nym doesn’t play well with the rhythm; “GM” or “DM” or “DG” -done would work, but not “*bump*bump*bump* done.”

                      *rings out*

                    3. >> “Dang, your ‘nym doesn’t play well with the rhythm”

                      I figured you’d come back with something like “you’re no fun,” but oh well.

                      >> “*rings out*”

                      Thanks a ton.

                    1. No, it’s a moosical!

                      Too bad most of the moosicians can’t play so well through their masks; the flute section has it the worst, though their efforts can be amoosing. Of course, with the audience limited to a maximum of 10 moosic fans the whole shebang is kind of moot.

                      Hay, I just had to horn in. Couldn’t ryesist.

                    2. [sigh]

                      You know how it occasionally rains fish? The weatherman is reporting “cloudy with a chance of carp” and I’m starting to wonder just how much effect this blog has on meteorology.

      1. –And yet, where it really mattered most, they won–

        Nope: Disney, Rian Johnson and Kathy Kennedy have since informed us that their ‘victories’ meant nothing and came to nothing. No of the heroes were able to build anything that lasted including their own relationships and families. The men all proved weaklings who died ignominiously and Leia had to take on their roles.

        Leia’s greatest mistakes: being feminine, marrying and having a child.

        No, the real heroes are perfect 90-pound girls who are perfect and win without trying perfectly, and anyone who tries to tell them otherwise is an oppressor out to bring them down. The real heroes are purple haired admirals who put sexist men in their place and must be obeyed without question.

        The past must be put to rest so the glorious future can come.

        1. Also know as how to spend $12 billion on something that let’s you spend $4 billion more making movies that lose money and drive the value of the underlying asset down towards $1 billion.

          I mean, Star Wars toys no longer sell thanks to the sequel trilogy.

          That takes work.

              1. Not quite yet. It’ll be fully fixed with the new Holiday Special, when it’s revealed Rey actually went back in time to the original trilogy and was really responsible for all the heroes’ successes.

                Successes which ultimately came to nothing…

                Don’t think too hard about it.

                But yeah, new Holiday Special. That’s real. Heard about it?

                1. I know.

                  That’s when I knew 2020 was the year of the Apocalypse.

                  What’s amazing is Disney thinks a new Star Wars Holiday Special is. Just. The. Thing.

                  I think that makes voting for Biden look sensible by comparison.

                  1. The next step is to start saying Star Wars was never that good to begin with. I think a lot of people are doing that right now, both the folks on the left who hated what the OT was all about, and others who are just calling sour grapes.

                    It just hit me: I used to watch the OT back to back every year. Now…haven’t watched it in years and have no desire to.

                    Wow…Star Wars really is dead.

                    1. I lost interest in Star Wars as the sequels were happening, though I didn’t notice it at the time.

                      But within a couple days of seeing the last sequel my interest came roaring back. Shortly after that I purchased a lightsaber. (geek here, get your own)

                2. I remember the first Holiday Special on TV, and What. Were. They. Thinking?!

                  The Wikipedia page for it describes a nonsensical plot and a production process that might be described as “dumpster fire.”

                  The bad part is, it’s not even the worst film of the Star Wars ouvre. I walked about before the end of “Return of the Jedi”, and I’d paid more than a day’s wages for that first-run ticket… I think the Ewoks were probably made from leftover wookie costumes from the Holiday Special…

                  1. Wookies were supposed to fill the plucky tree dwelling Viet Cong role in the third movie, and the holiday special Wookie home life stuff was a trial balloon, which fell so flat that Lucas invented a different set of non-english-speaking fully furry plucky aliens from the tall forests for that role, but short rather than tall.

                    Basically the galaxy traveling tech savvy space pilot Chewbacca character and the backwards hit-them-with-big-rocks triumphant insurgent victory he had in mind were too far apart to tape together with all of the gaffers tape possible.

          1. The thing that’s making the most money for the Star Wars franchise is a series about a baby and his foster father.

            Heh

        2. I reject your canon and substitute my own. /mythbusters.

          Three movies, couple good books, 1.5 good video games. Anything else is a mass hallucination.

          1. Bingo. Back when I had free time (before the kids were born) I used to GM a Star Wars RPG (using the Edge of the Empire rules by FFG). The only things I considered canon for my game were the original trilogy and the Timothy Zahn novels.

            1. Before we moved, I was involved in a Star Wars RPG started because the GM of the old campaign really wanted to play, and REALLY wanted to be a Jedi. So the GM came to me and asked “What could we do to mess with his mind?”. I pointed out that ‘Light Side/Dark Side’ was a very WESTERN misinterpretation of the yin/yang concept, and suggested we introduce a force-user from a different culture whose position would be ‘Light and Dark are not opposites, but compliments.’. He used a bokken instead of a lightsaber (although it could still act like a lightsaber) and generally drove the Jedi character nuts (“No, I will not let you teach me. My Sensei would not approve.”).

              To his credit, the Jedi’s PLAYER loved it.

            2. Not Stackpole’s?
              There was a lot of filler in the expanded universe, but there was quite a bit of good stuff, too.

              1. I still think one of the “deals” to sell Star Wars was that Disney couldn’t change Lucas’ declaration on the books not being canon anymore– so they have to run out the clock until someone figures out a way to either make good stories inside of the limits, or the “Expanded Universe” is announced as a giant selection of what if non canon stories.

              2. I haven’t managed to get hold of the X-Wing series, so I don’t know them. I have indeed heard that they’re good, so probably if I’d read them I’d also consider them canon in my game. But it’s hard for a GM to use source material he hasn’t read. 🙂

          2. Aaron Allston’s Xwing series books are among my favourites. Stackpole’s Xwing books / I, Jedi are just behind Zahn.

              1. I will admit that killing Wash made me take the threat to the other characters seriously. Even then I didn’t think Whedon would go for a TPK, but I wouldn’t have put it past him to kill off one or two more.

  3. I saw bits of the Democrat convention on Fox News yesterday. I wasn’t about to subject myself to it raw. Are they completely incapable of rational thought?

    In one breath the Democrats blame Trump for not taking more drastic action to slow the spread of a disease that is not nearly as serious as they pretend it is.

    In the very next one they blame Trump for the economic decline, the bankrupt small businesses and widespread unemployment caused by the measures that WERE taken.

    They seem to believe that a majority of American voters are too stupid to see the inherent contradiction and hypocrisy of those two positions. We can only hope they are as wrong about that as they are about everything else.

    Then they announce ‘free health care for all’ AND ‘reduced healthcare costs’ like we never heard THOSE promises from Comrade Joe Biden before. The last time, they did little more than pile a bloated bureaucracy on top of the dysfunctional morass caused by previous government meddling. Costs shot up and access diminished. You’d think their ideal health care system was exemplified by the Bernie Sanders V.A. hospitals.
    ———————————
    Under socialized medicine, each patient incurs expenses which end when the patient dies. In private practice, each patient provides profits which end when the patient dies. Which patient would YOU rather be?

    1. They seem to believe that a majority of American voters are too stupid to see the inherent contradiction and hypocrisy of those two positions. We can only hope they are as wrong about that as they are about everything else.

      No, they believe the can manufacture enough votes this time in MI, PA, and WI to make it seem plausible Biden won over those who “realized their mistake” in voting for Trump.

      They lost 2016 because they thought Trump was so bad they didn’t bother to manufacture the margin of fraud. They won’t fail to do so this time.

      1. And in 2018 they frauded (this is now a word) so much that they couldn’t keep it quiet.

        AND they had tremendous help from the GOPe.

        AND it was midterms, when they were “supposed” to win.

        And the result was that they barely eeked out a token win. The power from that they have squandered in making even greater fools of themselves than they already were.

          1. I think because it’s not part of the official acronym, standing for “establishment”. If people wrote “the GOPE” it might be confusing, as people would be looking around for a four-letter acronym that fit those initials and might not connect it to the Grand Old Party acronym. But by making the e lowercase, it makes it clear that this is “GOP plus another word” rather than a four-letter acronym.

      2. They MAY not do so this time. I don’t think they have any grasp of how badly the “join us as we burn down your life” Narrative is playing. I don’t think they have any grasp of how badly various Fascist ‘emergency orders’ that only seem to apply to people who have (or had) jobs are playing.

        And I don’t think Trump is an idiot.

        Yes, he’s been talking about vote fraud and fraud-by-mail, but not acting forcefully to stop it. He’s a better strategist than that. He’s established the Narrative that fraud may happen, and that those pushing vote-by-mail want it. If we were facing a polished, well oiled Machine, like the one that put JFK in the White House, I might be worried. We aren’t. On their own showing, this bunch couldn’t guide a pack of hungry vampires to a blood bank (with thanks to Andrew Greeley). They are going to get caught. Furthermore there is every indication that the Obamacoup (I’m sick of ‘Gate’) scandal is going to go from trickle to flood soon. And I doubt that’s an accident.

        I think that the day after election night 2020, the Democrat Power Brokers are going to be wondering what hit them. And I think the SMART ones are going to be packing for a quick trip to somewhere without an extradition treaty.

        And even if my expectations are wildly awry, even if Biden DOES ‘win’ and we can’t prove the fraud, or if the Democrats dig in and try to make a fight of it, what have they got to enforce their will? A military that knows they despise the military, and has perfect legal grounds for saying “fix it yourself, buttmunch!”? Police forces that they’ve been undermining for months? The Antifidiots and Black Lives Splatter morons?

        We are about to see much of the Fascist Left collapse of its own internal idiocy and incompetence.

        1. I’m not worried if they survive or not.

          I’m worried we won’t survive them and their Miltonian Satanism that would reduce us to Hell itself if they thought it increases their chances to rule.

          If Trump wins what we’ve seen to now is a preview. John Podesta is willing to wargame the threat of succession if Trump wins.

          Apparently all those weird ammo and gun purchases made in the Obama administration can’t be accounted for. I wonder if the search of places controlled by Antifi’s handlers would find them.

          1. Most of the “weird gun and ammo purchases” I saw brought up during Obama’s time were contracts that were deliberately described in freaky ways– like talking about the noise maker cannons used to scare birds off of flight paths as if they were, you know, cannon-cannons, or describing a 10 year contract to replace stuff as they’re used as if it had been delivered at signing.

            Of course you wouldn’t be able to find the Department of Energy’s machine guns in a warehouse somewhere– because they’re in use where they have been for the past, like, 30 years. Just getting replaced and people qualifying on them.

            1. It is helpful to understand that much like the “Department of Defense” (aka War) the “Department of Energy” is just a nice and friendly term for the “Department of Nukes”.

              Suddenly it starts to make a lot more sense why they might want to be armed to the teeth.

              1. I just realized part of why I’m not worried about the really freaking odd purchases done in the Obama era is because I know a bit of what they did with similar stuff in the Navy– and that was bog-standard “use the contract to hand someone you like a gov’t contract so they can take some of it and hand it back to you” stuff.

                The only thing that would startle me if they made a bunch of over-buying, over-priced contracts and the stuff never showed up would be if we didn’t still pay for it.

                1. Any time you see any really weird Spending out of the government, if you bet that it is a consequence of Congressional rules on acquisitions you have a good chance of being right.

                  1. Spend it or Lose it was a reality when I worked seasonally at the USFS. Hit every August. Had to have it in hand before start of Oct 1 FY. Never made any sense then. Doesn’t now. The other thing that happened was fire vehicles dispatched empty of gear (just the truck & personnel) to wildfires, that came back fully outfitted with new hoses, axes, shovels, valves, etc., or gear that were suppose to be on them, because of unlimited fire funds. This was late ’70s. Not just the original district I was on, friend & hubby, who were at another district, mentioned both trends too.

                    1. Ugh, I hate the spend it or lose it garbage. When I was a contractor in my field office’s weeds program, my boss was REALLY GOOD at husbanding her budget every year to make sure that, most of the time, the really important treatments wouldn’t be interrupted if some idiot higher up decided not to give us any money.

                      Of course, the problem then was that same idiot higher up would inevitably say something like “Why should we give you any money? You still have some left” and we’d have to fight EVERY year to keep funding coming in. (Because amazingly enough, most of the noxious weed species a.) are nigh impossible to completely eradicate from a location and b.) if you skip even ONE year, that infestation will blow right back up and all the money spent on it in previous years will in effect have been wasted.)

                    2. Oh, spend or lose is only the tip of the iceberg. $700 screwdriver? Congressional rule say that the price of a package must be divided evenly among the parts, so when you buy (for example) an F-14 replacement engine kit you get a $700 screwdriver…and a $700 jet engine (along with a lot of other $700 parts). Grossly expensive toilet seat? It was for an airplane bathroom (already expensive) AND Congressional rules forbid just going to whoever builds toilets for the airlines; you must write specs from scratch…so you end up paying tool-up costs. Grossly expensive bolts? That was landing-gear bolts for carrier aircraft. The Navy bought enough for the projected service life of the aircraft…which Congress decided to extend by 20 years. And, of course, the original tooling had bee recycled years before, so….

                      Not that the military isn’t capable of producing major screwups on their own. I hear tell that after getting the Air Force (which HATES buying transport aircraft) to buy a fleet of aircraft that (in terms of secure cargo) were two jeeps wide, the army (admittedly a few years later) bought a new model of Jeep that was 2” wider. And I’m told the M-14 rifle is basically the Garand with a removable box magazine and a fully automatic option. It took them 12 years, and they never did get the production tooling producing reliable guns. The rifle had a shorter service life than its production cycle.

                  1. They also cover the parts of the nuclear industry that aren’t supposed to result in radioactive death.

                1. The nuke part used to be a stand-alone commission, originally the Atomic Energy Commission, then Nuclear Regulatory. Jimmah Carter decided we didn’t have enough regulation, so in 1977 the interesting bits were combined with various other commissions and agencies to make the DOE.

                  ‘Tis a mess; according to Wiki, the Human Genome Project is under the DOE. I’ll leave the implications of that to Fluffy and the Aardvark.

            2. I was confident back then that the reports were leaving out some major context or confusing major facts, just like all the stories where I had some knowledge of what was going on.

            3. well, the DoE’s ‘machine guns’ are largely, more than likely, M-4 Carbines to replace the M-16s they have been carrying since the 80s.

            4. I recall in the early-mid 2000’s some going on on about “OMG, the Draft!”… when people who were to run some bits of the Selective Service system, should it ever be engaged, simply had their 20 year runs expire.

          2. Given the general level of organization of the non-military government (the military isn’t generally better, they are just more specifically aware of the necessity of keeping track of things that go *bang*), if there isn’t a reasonable explanation for where the guns and ammunition are, they are lost in a leaky warehouse, under several crates of 5.5” floppy discs in the original packaging.

            1. just behind the Ark of the Covernant, and beside the Amiga that was supposed to be shipped to me on discharge…

          3. Herb, all those ‘weird gun and ammo purchases during the Obama administration’ were pretty much surpassed by civilian purchases in July alone… and there’s an ammo shortage!

            1. Hell, there’s a GUN shortage! All the stores are getting bought out.

              It’s like when the first ‘assault rifle’ ban passed in Kalifornia. Gun stores from Alabama to Vermont were flat out of AR-15’s, Mini-14’s, FN-FAL’s, and M-1A’s. “We done sent ’em all to Californy!” Prices for AR-15’s jumped from $520 to $1,600 in two weeks.

              Before Larry Correia retired from the gun store business, he had a big picture of 0bama labeled ‘#1 gun salesman of the year’.

              I wonder, can we reach 600 million privately owned guns in the U.S. before November? Not counting all those terrible canoe accidents, of course. Tricky devils, canoes.

              1. I wonder, can we reach 600 million privately owned guns in the U.S. before November?

                That few? 😉

                1. Hush now. They, quite literally, have *no* idea.

                  And I’m not even talking about fully functional “curios and relics” that still shoot 1.5MOA at a half a mile or so. Or the numerous stabs at making a national gun registry that failed miserably and wouldn’t have worked anyway if they were even tried. Or the many attics and basement safes that haven’t been opened in years.

                  Or the normies that don’t follow politics, visit gun ranges, or speak about it much, but get heavy packages in the mail every month or two and have private land out in the sticks that are slowly developing deposits of copper and lead.

                  Or still yet the folks who could arm whole neighborhoods just with .22 long rifle and a brick of cartridges at the drop of a hat, because they’re like chips that way- you can never have *just* one.

                  So no, I disbelieve most statistics on gun ownership.

                  Of course, *I* don’t own any guns these days, either. Boating accidents were a terrible plague back eleven, twelve years ago, weren’t they?

                  1. Their statistics are based on numbers they do have: production, importation, and sales numbers. Unfortunately, their numbers are then processed by ‘wear’ numbers that make it look like they think firearms wear out on a timeline comparable to a car…. or possibly the assumption that civilian firearms wear out at the same rate as military ones, no one is quite sure.

                    1. and also their ‘sales’ numbers are based off of NICS checks… which aren’t entirely accurate because in many states you can have multiple firearms on a single check.

                    2. Unfortunately, their numbers are then processed by ‘wear’ numbers that make it look like they think firearms wear out on a timeline comparable to a car….

                      Oh, good heavens. NONE of our guns are as new as our cars, and I think my folks have…two guns that are newer than their cars? And I’m not counting the pre-WWII Italian reproduction of an American revolutionary rifle? (My grandfather was weird.)

                      And we drive old cars, per his office.

                    3. Heck I have dad’s 30-30, which he got in 1947 when he was 12. I have Great-Uncle’s 30-30, which he purchased used at age 10, in 1914 … need I go on? Those don’t count mom & dad’s “newer” hunting rifles that were purchased before I was born. I’m 64 this fall … or great-granddad’s shotgun, passed down to dad through grandpa. All mom’s dad’s guns went to her younger brother for his boys. She figured there were enough to pass down to us girls as it was (there are plenty). Of coarse we’ll have to go fishing to retrieve them, dang canoes. I hate boats. (note, I really do. I chum at the dock … well I turn green at least. Drives hubby & his brother nuts.)

                    4. The arsenals of the Warsaw Pact countries were full of AK-47s no longer required once they didn’t have to meet Soviet preparedness directives, and some of those countries changed from the AK-47 to the AK-74 or even the AR-15. American scrappers came in and made offers for rifles in cargo-container lots. Up until a few years ago, you could buy a brand new AK, cut across the receiver, for $75 or less. Not a gun, just a “parts kit”; no ATF paperwork required. An entire industry popped up providing replacement receivers, from finished FFL parts to bend-it-yourself pieces of stamped sheet metal. Sears.com used to sell them for $15.

                      Nobody knows how many home-built Kalashnikovs are in America. Some of us have… several. Hey, at those prices, why not?

                      The situation with AR-15s is, if anything, even better. The ATF ruled that the serialized part of an AR is the “receiver”, which is essentially a bracket that holds the “upper”, where all the important bits are, in relation to the stock, magazine, and trigger assembly. Home-finished 80% receivers are a thing, but people have made and demonstrated working receivers made from pine boards, laminated cutting boards, and one industrious guy demonstrated using pourable plastic to duplicate an existing receiver with simple home-made molds. Some of us may have several of those, too.

                      Because this is America, and all your guns are belong to U.S. …

                    5. welll…

                      there was a lot of paperwork done to import those parts kits to the country, and yeah the ATF has an idea how many of them there are and even randomly checks lots to make sure the receivers are destroyed to spec. That’s why there are ridiculous rules like it must be torch cut and the cuts must be x width etc.

                      but you can get flats for anything… *looks at the CETME flat*

                  2. Draven, those “NICS checks” also don’t take people in TX, forex, who have CHLs. We don’t do NICS checks as long as the permit’s good.

                2. I always interpret that as “gun owners.”

                  (Yes, I know that’s almost double the US population, but it’s more likely than fewer than a quarter of US households being gun owners, or Elf and I being above average in our firearm ownership.)

              2. 20 years ago they were talking of 300+mil. 20 Years! The Media is STILL talking 300+Mil.
                The number are not knowable BUT I believe that 600+ is STILL LOW!
                People make air cannot to shoot 8 lb. pumpkins and their main problem is if they use too much air the pumpkin is destroyed. Using 8 lb. projectiles that they don’t have to worry about pieing, just how far could they toss them.
                The French, the FRENCH, built Sten guns using hand tools. Americans have power tools and many have lathes and mills. What could Hill Billy’s do, let alone the Engineers out there.
                There are more than enough firearms to arm every man, woman, and child in the US. And AMMO to go with them. The Idea the Progressives have that they can register let alone confiscate the guns in America is so stupid ONLY a Progressive could believe it.

          4. They are planning to take power if Trump wins again by denouncing any Trump victory as being illegitimate, having their press and social media arms push it on steroids, and call for a military “intervention” to “prevent Trump from getting away with stealing the election”.

            1. And it is in preparation for that moment that I think Trump has been holding what he knows about the fraud in the 2016 election; “Oh, I ‘stole’ this election, did I. Well here’s what THEY did in 2016,:and we expect to have similar data on THIS election shortly.”

              They really can’t get it through their solid biscuit heads that Trump fights back.

              1. If you had enough evidence to pick someone up for vote fraud, would you do it months or years before the next election? Or would you wait until right before the election, when he would likely have all kinds of evidence like extra ballots and fake IDs that would make conviction even easier?

                  1. I would say Sunday evening. Gives time for the news to impact late deciders but not enough time for the Democrats to call up the B-team.

                    1. Given both early and mail in voting (both of which are happening in most of Texas), they’ll have plenty of time to get the fraudulent votes in.

                      Just like 2016, but with the stops pulled out.

                  2. Definitely Monday. Even if you can’t make it stick (and you should be able to), it disrupts their operations without giving them time over the weekend to activate alternates.

                  3. Also, arrests should steer clear of “official” type operatives whose absence would gum up the legitimate works. Otherwise it looks like a political hit in the Rubicon range, even if it isn’t.

                    1. “Also, arrests should steer clear of “official” type operatives whose absence would gum up the legitimate works.”

                      Leaving all the fraudsters in place to certify the results they’ve invented. That should work well.

                      They’ll claim it’s a coup no matter what, so why, exactly, should we substitute image for effectiveness any longer??? That’s the GOPe way.

                1. This all figures into my thinking, and there’s another factor (which I believe I’ve mentioned, but hey); Trump didn’t NEED to bing it up in 2016. What he needed to do then was demonstrate that he could accomplish some of what he’d promised. Nailing vote fraudsters who had lost anyway was a distraction

                2. Wouldn’t it depend on the nature of the scheme? If you’re busting a conspiracy you need a lengthier period in order to roll the petty perjurers and build cases against the plotters promoting and enabling their nefarious doings. Stopping a crime is good, but stopping criminal enterprise is better.

                  After all, the point is not simply to stop and expose individual fraudsters, any more than the proper goal of busting street-corner drug dealers should be taking low-level punks off the streets.

                  1. One other element: I haven’t kept up with the Election Playbook in the Age of the Internet, but way back when the basic rule was you could sustain a lie simple denial for a week to ten days. Thus anything in that interval before election day can be denied, obfuscated, diverted and counter-charged without paying great price at the polls.

                    Given the Media Mendacity of our times, the rule is obviously different for Democrats versus Republicans and especially for Trump. It makes a great deal of difference whether stories are introduced as “latest allegations,” “unproven assertions” or “criminal indictments” even as the substance may be identical in each instance.

                  2. You need to have enough incontrovertible evidence that the Democrats can’t sell the “He’s locking up Democrat activists because he knows he’ll lose the election.”

                    The immediate goal is to frustrate their designs for the 2020 election. Rolling up the criminal enterprise can come later.

        2. > somewhere without an extradition treaty.

          African Republic, Chad, Communist China, Comoros, Congo (both of them), Djibouti, Mauritania, Micronesia (presumably the Federated States of Micronesia, since there are five other Micronesia polities), Moldova, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, Niger, Oman, Qatar, Russia, Rwanda, Samoa, São Tomé & Príncipe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Vatican, Vietnam and Yemen.

          There’s a pattern there if you look… actually, I’m surprised Mongolia doesn’t have an extradition treaty with us; they’re generally quite friendly to the USA. Perhaps the subject simply hasn’t come up. Micronesia used to be a US trust territory and we had a number of treaty agreements with them, so maybe it just hasn’t come up with them, either.

          1. What about France? They won’t ship Roman Polansky back. You think they would return any of their Progressive Governing Class EUrophiles?

            1. I don’t think a state can extradite someone from a foreign country; that would be something the Fed would have to do, and he didn’t commit a Federal crime, so the Fed has no standing.

              Besides, Polanski has friends. Most of them probably regulars on the Lolita Express.

          2. Likewise, Montenegro has been actively been seeking defense and economic treaties with us.
            Getting extradition would be as simple as a precondition to discuss these.

          3. Noted — it is apparently a violation of Human Rights to sanction individuals for violating Human Rights, or at least that’s what the UN believes:

            Will a U.N. Human-Rights Expert Defend Belarus’s Dictator?
            As the international response to the August 9 presidential election in Belarus takes shape, one key international official might step in to lobby against the use of sanctions targeting the regime of President Alexander Lukashenko — a U.N. human-rights official.

            … It’s no secret that Lukashenko is guilty of egregiously abusing fundamental human rights, but this might not stop Belarusian academic Alena Douhan, who in March became the second U.N. Special Rapporteur on the negative impact of unilateral coercive measures, a special human-rights office. By “unilateral coercive measures” the office’s creators, of course, meant sanctions — particularly, the kind of sanctions employed by Western governments to target chronic human-rights abusers.

            That special rapporteur position was created by a 2014 resolution at the U.N. Human Rights Council introduced by Iran on behalf of the non-aligned movement. According to the resolution, that official would be charged with collecting information on sanctions that allegedly contravene human-rights law. The list of countries that voted for it mirrors, unsurprisingly, the countries that are oft targeted by international sanction on human rights grounds — China, Venezuela, Cuba, Russia, and others.

            … On Twitter, Hillel Neuer, the director of U.N. Watch, an NGO that holds the international organization accountable to its fundamental human-rights guarantees, said that Douhan could weigh in against the EU move.

            “The UNHRC will condemn these EU sanctions against the Belarus regime as ‘unilateral coercive measures,’” he wrote. “They have a Special Rapporteur — @AlenaDouhan (of Belarus . . .) — dedicated to condemning all sanctions on dictatorships as ‘human rights violations.”

            … During an interview on Tuesday with Truthside TV, an online video channel, Douhan argued against the use of sanctions, describing them as unlawful and against international human-rights legal instruments. She made a similar argument in April, issuing a statement that called on “the international community to take immediate measures to lift, or at least suspend, all sanctions until our common threat is eliminated,” referring to the coronavirus epidemic.

            This is a common refrain repeated by the governments of authoritarian countries that are targeted by international sanctions. It’s a neat rhetorical trick that transforms enforcement action intended to stop human-rights abuses into a violation of the targets’ rights, and the sovereignty of the countries implicated in the sanctions. At the U.N. Human Rights Council, authoritarian regimes are provided a platform to make their case — and they’re vested with the institutional legitimacy of the U.N. to do it.

            It remains to be seen whether Douhan will eventually speak out against the EU’s decision to impose sanctions on officials linked to the Belarus regime and any additional sanctions against Belarus that are put in place by the U.S government. If she does, this will be another testament to the brilliance of the international authoritarian investment in the U.N.’s human rights mechanisms. It’s a gambit that’s paid off before, and it will continue to pay dividends to the world’s dictators.

        3. “Furthermore there is every indication that the Obamacoup (I’m sick of ‘Gate’) scandal is going to go from trickle to flood soon. And I doubt that’s an accident.”

          Klinesmith’s guilty plea is why the Steve Bannon indictments dropped now.

      3. Hillary was busy ginning up the popular vote numbers (which is easier to do in Chicago and NYC) so she would ensure her not losing popular vote and winning the electoral, and she got herself the popular vote . . . and managed to lose the electoral

        1. I know. And yet, now the Dems are using that as a rallying cry to claim Trump isn’t legit. They’ll do the same with Biden. I suspect Podesta accidentally tipped their hand in that wargame.

          Or maybe it was an intentional tip…a warning to us to behave and select Biden.

          1. thing to remember with yon shrill one is she was told early and often what she needed to do to win, and ignored it. Combined with her eminent likability (or mahoosive lack, thereof) it was a good recipe to not gain enough margin of fraud to win in those places they use fraud to squeak ahead (Mi, Wi, etc)

          2. I’ve said it here before; any time somebody tells me “Hillary won the popular vote!” my answer is “What makes you think so?”

            They’re all set for “The popular vote doesn’t matter.” They’re all prepared to argue that it SHOULD. They are NEVER prepared to face that Her Shrillness’s margin of ‘victory’ in the ‘popular vote’ was LESS then her margin of ‘victory’ in California; a State notorious for Democratic vote fraud. And for Democrat suppression of investigation of vote fraud.

            1. What makes me think so? Why, it was i ALL the news reports.

              Earlier today I was pondering that news reports of riots protests being “mostly” peaceful are “mostly” accurate.

              For certain values of mostly.

                1. I think it says something about how much Politics is on my mind that I simultaneously ‘heard’ that line in the voice from the movie AND wondered when Gingrich had said it, and why.

      4. They weren’t complacent in 2016.
        They committed as much fraud as they thought they could get away with.
        They also unleashed widespread violence (although not as much as this time around) to intimidate those inclined to vote for Trump.

        It wasn’t enough.

        Biden is as corrupt as Hillary, with a side order of creepy.
        Kamala isn’t any better.
        Trump is no longer a pig in a poke, bought as an F U to a corrupted Republican Party, but one of the better presidents we’ve had.

        They’re desperate. They’re dangerous. And they’re flailing.
        If they had any confidence that they’ve got this thing sewn up, they wouldn’t be desperate and flailing.
        And I fully expect it to get worse.

        1. Actually, given their behavior over the last several decades, I suspect they are both confident AND desperate. On the one hand, they’re sure that all the old tricks will work again, and on the other they are horribly aware that they didn’t last time.

    2. > In private practice, each patient provides profits which end when the patient dies.

      They have that covered. Look up “capitation”, where insurance companies turn your office visit into a *cost* for your doctor…

      If you’re shopping for a new GP or an important consult, you might want to ask if they’re taking capitation from your insurance provider.

    3. > ‘free health care for all’ AND ‘reduced healthcare costs’

      Dude! “You just pay for it!” — Congressperson Ocrazio-Cortex-the-Hyphenated

  4. Well….. I was waiting to post my weekly “try to figure out how how these ‘human’ things work” tirade. So my guts probably won’t work.

    But these guts might:

  5. And like Puddleglum, be willing to put your foot into the fire if it’s necessary to break the spell.

    I refuse to despair, whatever the evidence, simply because that is what They want us to do. They want us to despair. They want us to accept that we’ve lost already, and stop fighting. If we had really lost, they wouldn’t be pushing this so hard!

    Words engraved on my heart: “Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never—in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in, except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force. Never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.”

    And if that’s not enough, remember Churchill’s next sentences: “We stood all alone a year ago, and to many countries it seemed that our account was closed, we were finished. All this tradition of ours, our songs, our School history, this part of the history of this country, were gone and finished and liquidated.”

    That’s where we’ll be if they manage to steal the election this November. And if they do, I still will not give up.

    As for “what’s the point” of writing, herbn, we are hardly the first writers to face a discouraging environment. Many, many writers have kept going despite suffering under the reality of an oppressive government such as we only fear – it hasn’t happened here yet, and in today’s technology it will be extremely hard to enforce. The problem was so common that Africans I knew had a phrase for it: “writing for the drawer” meant writing what could not be published, what might never be published in the writer’s lifetime. Honor those writers by continuing to produce your own work.

  6. And I don’t see how we turn this.

    By not giving up.

    Do what we can, as long as we can, and keep annoying the PISS out of them by not laying down and dying like we’re supposed to.

    Gentle as doves, cunning as serpents.

    1. Even against Entropy, a true unstoppable foe, you still win if you go down with middle fingers extended.

      These jokers like to pretend that they are as inevitable.

  7. I’m currently running on nerves and checklists, myself. Just got the dog’s ears medicined – that took a trip to the vet, because there was a death in the family Friday and no one in this house was up to doing it without getting bit. But it got done.

    There’s paperwork to do, death certificates to get, people to contact when we’ve got those, a lawyer involved because we just ran out of time to sell the last asset. But it’s getting done.

    There’s hysterics and then Sudden Silence from relatives, and the out-of-the-blue phone calls from “great friends of hers!” who hadn’t been in contact for over six years. We’re handling that too.

    In between the bouts of exhaustion there’s the sheer rage, because it was the isolation that did her in; without people to… deal with… she just didn’t want to live.

    I had my heart ripped out years ago, had to use guts since. Now? I think all I’ve got is backbone.

    But I’ve still got that.

    Going to get through this week. Keep trying… little things, even if writing anything with a plot is just too much at the moment.

    One step at a time.

      1. Rest, good food, a little exercise. Meditation. Prayer. Any type of self-care. I had a moment of insight that really helped me after my father died during a massage, so you never know what will help.

    1. So sorry. I think from what you’ve said before you have been having a very bad time for a while.

      1. Years. Hopefully once we get this one thing legally settled, that should be the end of it and I can start having a semi-normal life again.

        For at least the next week, though, I’m not pushing anything too hard. Rest is good.

    2. *hugs* Here’s to checklists, and someone to lean on, and sleep. And coffee, all the coffee. And the fact that if you start screaming, well, that’s considered an expected part of the grieving process. You’ll get through this.

      1. Someone to lean on would be nice, yes. Never had that.

        Hmm. It’s not screaming, but I’m contemplating a post on squirrels as the answers to (certain small) mysteries of the universe. Does that count? *Halo*

  8. And of course, the usual idiots said I was against the military voting, apparently failing to see the difference between unavoidable, carefully watched situations, and just mailing out ballots to every person, cat, dog and imaginary character at an address.

    I have repeatedly explained to folks that military voting is EXACTLY why I don’t like vote by mail.

    Work your tail off, do everything right, and your ballot still won’t show up, and then even if you do get it and manage to get it back in time, they usually don’t count it because “oh, the margin of error means that it probably won’t change anything.” In some cases they assumed that the military would break absolutely even, and THAT is how they justified ignoring the ballots….

    1. Or they know the military will go about 80% conservative and they HAVE to dispose of those ballots.

      1. There are districts where military votes, had they actually have been *counted* and *on time* would have shifted election results. Local races, sure, but some state races where the decision was by a bare few hundred.

        1. Most people (that I know, anyway) had no idea that most military and out-of-state votes were simply thrown away most of the time. It got aired pretty thoroughly in the 2000 election, though. I knew several people who were active duty military at the time, and the were *angry* when they found out.

          Like one said, “I went through the process to cast my lawful vote, and they threw it away. It they can do that to us, what’s stopping them from throwing away the votes of any other group they don’t like?”

      2. I strongly suspect that Foxfier’s “assumed” above means “that’s what they pretended to think.”

    2. Tell me again: which party was it in Florida 200 demanding military ballots be disqualified for lack of postmark?

    3. I applied for absentee voting for four (2 primary, 2 general) elections while serving.
      My unit happened to be stateside during all of them.
      The military mail service did not get any of them delivered in time for me to cast a valid ballot.
      .
      For what it’s worth.

  9. Various mouthpieces have started blathering about how Trump losing could result in right wing terrorism.

    Yes, obviously, they are trying to do battlefield preparation.

    What it also means is that for the first time the standing threat from Americans that tyrants will be killed has gotten through their thick skulls. And because of that they are terrified.

    We are still on the path; it is just that the rapids are a lot scarier while you are inside them than when you can see them down stream. Be not afraid.

      1. We’re seeing the preview. I suspect they have a much stronger game.

        After all, the Department of Education and others bought lots of guns and ammo while Obama was in office. Why and where did it go?

        1. Are you maybe thinking of the Department of Education SWAT teams (a “not exactly” story where the eye-catcher distracted from the worrying part) with the Department of Energy machine guns?

          1. No, I’m thinking of Ed SWAT.

            I am well aware of DoEnergy security requirements. Having been nuclear submarine I am aware they own all the nukes, reactor cores and weapons, not the DoD.

            1. Oh, good! That would be why I can’t find any @#$# thing on Department of Education firearms purchases!

              Long and not very well organized.

              The DoEd SWAT team thing was one of those cases where I can’t figure out if the story was set by someone who wanted to blunt the story or what– starting with, there wasn’t a SWAT team. There were two cops and some DoEd guys.
              So instead of the story being, in no specific order, the actual tactics used, the amount of money they’re handing out, that someone WAS able to do massive defrauding on that level, the lack of decent research… it’s the relatively easy to destroy “department of education has SWAT teams.”

              Someone tried to save that story/support it, by pointing to the various agencies that the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center trains people from…which resulted in such awesome “dude, did you think before jerking your knee?” moments as the Heritage foundation publishing someone unable to figure out that yes, there are legitimate reasons for the Department of Agriculture, Railroad Retirement Board, Bureau of Land Management, Tennessee Valley Authority, Office of Personnel Management, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to have armed, trained people, and they don’t involve some idiots doing a 6AM search of a house looking for someone that committed massive fraud.
              For heaven’s sake, they list the classes they teach there, and have since the story first came out– one of them is active shooter response training.

            2. Note on link:

              1) the FBI comment did NOT age well, ask the guys in the Trump campaign
              2) the triggering situation was, quite literally, what the author wanted as a solution; get law enforcement to serve a warrant.

              So instead of “What the ever f*ing F are they doing that this got a warrant?” it was all “eeeek, DoEd SWAT team!”

        2. I don’t think they have a much stronger game. I have noticed that almost all of the bad acts that make the world worse are the result of people who don’t hide much, and who count on other people minding their own business so they (the bad actors) don’t get stopped. It’s usually that rather than a complicated plan with layers of safety measures. Even the Russiagate stuff is a thinly plotted spy novel. Lots of individuals, but not a lot of complexity. Just lying about everything is as complicated as THAT got. The Antifa violence amounts to well financed socialists destroying a friendly venue. They don’t get arrested because it is NOT a popular uprising, and the local politicians are tame, for one reason or another. It won’t play in Peoria.

          1. Agreed. I don’t credit that lot with enough competence to have a stronger game. They might get BOLDER, maybe. But I note that for all the bluster and threats of “We’re coming to the suburbs/rural towns” the few attempts in that direction fizzled FAST in the face of openly armed residents and–in one memorable spot (in California, even!)–a straight up beat-down of the would-be antifa-terrorists.

            These people are fundamentally cowards. Yes, there are going to be a few outliers, but overall, they are rank, spineless bullies with litte imagination and few brains. That isn’t to say that things might not get very bad indeed, but the key to dealing with cowardly bullies is to NOT despair and surrender. They *want* you to do that, because then they don’t run the risk of getting hurt themselves. If they can win the psychological fight, they don’t have to risk as much of their precious skin. So we DO NOT let them wind the mind-games. Force them to bring it physically. Yeah, it’ll suck. Innocent people will get hurt/killed–but I ask you, how would that be much different than what’s going on RIGHT NOW, other than the fact that more of THEM will be getting hurt and therefore will be more likely to retreat.

            They’re wrecking the places that are friendly to them and where the local “leaders” are giving them cover. They haven’t truly tried it in hostile territory yet (and are, I hope, rapidly turning those previously friendly areas hostile…though apparently not, as they’re still doing it, sigh>)

            1. I’m still waiting to hear the police finally released the AnfiFa guy who kicked the outlaw biker’s ride, and now they can’t find where he vanished to.

              I’d say I hope he finds a hole and pulls it in behind himself, but the IQ involved in doing something like that even when you ARE sure the police will save you…immediately… suggest it is not a sensible thing to ask for.

              1. And those MCs have a LONG memory when it comes to what they consider insults, and ANY non-MC member touching a member’s bike without permission is an insult.

                1. I’m rather fond of the Antifa idiots who tried to attack Little Italy. And the multimillion dollar mansion annex of Little Italy. And the large number of well-armed men in suits who were defending the mansion neighborhood.

                  I mean, how stupid do you have to be, to try to attack two neighborhoods which were well known for being mobbed up? And I’m highly interested to find out if this counts as some kind of violation of agreements between crooked politicians and the Mafia, because that might have some interesting effects on attempted election fraud or mysterious donations to candidates.

                  1. my old neighborhood, you didn’t have to lock your doors. of course, you never saw nothin either. The only way to deal with those guys is to stay the hell away from them.

                    DiBlasio is stupid and has no honor. Trouble is that NYC is hollowed out. All the people who grew up there, married there, raised children there now don’t live there. Even the mob. The cops don’t live in NYC, the mob doesn’t live in NYC, only the rich and their servants live in NYC and the rich are leaving.

                    The question is will they select a decent mayor next election. They always have before but I have to wonder if there’s enough decent people left in NYC now to do so. If they don’t they’re doomed. What a pity.

                    1. The question is will they select a decent mayor next election

                      The question is, will they be offered a decent mayor next election? They weren’t last election, and the one before that, though it pains me to say it, de Blasio was pretty much the best option in the only election which mattered, the Democrat primary.

                      The NY GOP is not a healthy party, and their Democrats are an UNhealthy party – but virulent.

            2. Power Line this morning put up an interesting interview [https://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2020/08/bob-kroll-speaks.php] with Bob Kroll, the Minneapolis police union president whose whom received the “visit” last weekend from a crowd of wannabe toughs, complete with pinata effigies of Kroll and his wife.

              It runs about fifteen minutes and in it Kroll discusses not only the “visits” but the support of his neighbors and the very, very mild demeanor of the leader of that protest when he chances to bump into Kroll under ordinary circumstances.

              Apparently there’s a lot of acting out by these clowns, playing to an audience when they know there’s no risk of repercussions. Police response to them is muted, to an extent, by awareness that these protesters, if touched, will act out injuries in a way that would embarrass European soccer players.

        3. You mean this ammo?

          https://phantomsoapbox.blogspot.com/2014/02/dept-of-homeland-security-prepares-for.html

          They used all that fancy ammo for training. I can’t find the blog post I did on it years ago, but it turns out that the various government departments decided they needed to do ALL their training with service-issue ammo. Because “shoot-what-you-carry” means more opportunities to steal in the procurement end of things.

          So yeah, they burned up dollar-a-round hollow point ammo at the range.

    1. To the leftoids “Rightwing Terroism” is exemplified by the shooting in Austin. Some ignorant leftoid, illegally impeding traffic, while carrying his AK tried to clear the muzzle and point it at some random driver in their car. Said driver, not being a fool, shot first (Han Shot First!) before said AK was pointed at him. Obviously Rightwing Terrorism, i.e. “Why, they fought back when we attacked them!”

      1. That’s what should worry them about ‘Right Wing Terrorism’; the people they consider Right Wing (flyover people) hit what they shoot at. Most of what the Fascist Left knows about firearms is drivel, and if they have any, they don’t practice enough to matter much.

      2. To the leftoids “Rightwing Terroism” is exemplified by anybody talking back or being hesitant to do as told by the (Progressive) state.

    2. Various mouthpieces have started blathering about how Trump losing could result in right wing terrorism.

      Yes, obviously, they are trying to do battlefield preparation.

      …while hoping no one notices what they’ve been doing since they lost the 2016 election?

  10. The dark upside is that if things go south, it will no longer be necessary to use restraint. The (non-political) conservative Rage Monster will be unleashed in many forms, in many places. My biggest worry has been not knowing when it’s appropriate to push back, and it will be a relief when I know that the time for aggressive action has arrived.

    But hey, I’m a guy.

    1. If you think women don’t have a rage monster…. Part of what’s driving my depression is the inability to beat to death with my bare hands the idiots who richly deserve it. I turn the rage inward. Not a good thing.

      1. Stress (n): The conflict created when one’s better judgement overrides the primal need to beat the living shit out of some stupid asshole that desperately deserves it.

      2. My husband is one of the most tranquil men I know. This is in large part why I married him. He’s been very, very quietly seething for about two years now, and it’s building. I am oddly pleased to see it in him but really hoping it won’t be needed.

        1. Once again, some assume that “nothing happened” means nothing will keep on happening.

          But eventually..
          ..the camel’s back gives out.
          ..the activation energy is reached.
          ..the boiler blows.
          ..the gadget goes (prompt) critical.

          The longest of fuses lead to the largest of charges.

          If they (and we all, really) are REALLY, REALLY LUCKY… everyone can quietly spin down and relax.

          What I fear?

          The fraud wins – the war begins.

      3. Have you considered a punching bag? Maybe with a printout of the appropriate asshole’s face taped to it?

        I’m only half-joking here; it might work as stress relief. And if a punching bag isn’t practical for whatever reason a sufficiently large pillow might be enough.

      4. Too bad you and Dan live so far from Kentucky. You could go to Knob Creek and rent a submachine gun and hose targets, then rent a flamethrow to burn a car. It is very relaxing. (I recommend a proper face shield if you plan to keep your eyebrows, though.)

        Are any ranges open in Denver? Just throwing hot lead downrange for a while can improve your mood. It improves *my* mood, anyway…

  11. Making guts into new heart? When did this become a crafting forum? At any rate, if we’re making guts into anything I think we should cover making our enemiess guts into garters.

    Stocking manufacturers have been cost-cutting with the elastic, and if there’s anything I hate more than my enemies it is wearing droopy socks.

      1. “Not a very good piece. Looks like an early Seurat in boring grays and browns, with flecks of white. What do you call it?”

        “.270 Winchester To the Brain Housing Group.”

        1. And scared IJN Yamato into running from her torpedoes.

          (Well, Yamato ran from someone’s torps, I don’t think they were actually Johnston’s.)

            1. But the Yamato couldn’t be risked. Losing the Yamato would be symbolically bad, even beyond the strategic loss. Imperial Japan only had two capital battleships, and no capability to build more. We were cranking out ships like Christmas toys.

              1. uhh, they had a bit more than two… at the time of the sinking of the Yamato, Japan had five other battleships- most of which they lost in the following July.

                1. They were not nearly as big, didn’t have the 460mm guns, and were not symbols of national pride.

                  1. Not so much of a symbol of national pride they didn’t run her out on a suicide mission to try and beach herself as a gun emplacement at Okinawa.

                    Not that she made it, sending a battleship out without air cover was a distinctly stupid thing to do especially that late in the war; you’d have thought they’d learned that from the loss of Musashi.

                    The U.S. Navy, however, did learn something from putting 19 torpedoes and 17 bombs into Musashi which they applied to Yamato: put all the torpedoes into the same side of the ship needing only 10 torpedoes and 7 bombs to sink her.

                    The real reason that Yamato and Musashi did so little in the war was they didn’t have enough fuel to use them more.

              2. Her sister ship, the Musashi, was sunk the day before. That’s one of the reasons Halsey thought that it would be safe to take his fleet off to chase down the last Japanese flattops.

                1. Just to clarify, Musashi was sunk the day before the Battle Off Samar, along with two cruisers – including Kurita’s flagship (the Admiral had a bad couple of days), during the Battle of the Sibyan Sea. the opening event for the Battle of Leyete Gulf.

                  Yamato would be sunk a little less than six months after her sister.

  12. If you really want to know what the enemy is saying what their goals are, start here: https://democrats.org/where-we-stand/party-platform/ Eighty pages of drafted drivel, starting with a statement about native americans that just isn’t true.

    You don’t know what to do? Funny, I got a postcard invitation this week to an organizational meeting of the Barrington Republican Committee for tonight. (We don’t have a town Republican Committee, so this should be interesting. Hopefully not futile. More to the point, this is where we can make a difference, if not at the state and federal levels, at least keeping our town honest in voting.

    I voted by mail for 20 years while in the military. It was as honest as it gets because you have a unit voting officer checking to make sure you’re not breaking any laws, and that you really are who you say you are, and that you’re only sending 1 ballot from you from your unit. (That doesn’t stop you from ordering other ballots and sending them from elsewhere, but at least the one from the base signed by the officer is real.)

    First of all, COVID isn’t an acceptable excuse for mail in voting; and anyone who says differently is a God Damn Liar. You can stand in line at Walmart, stand in line at the DMV, stand in line at the grocery store, stand in line damn near anywhere and not worry about catching COVID, you can damn well safely stand in line at the polls to vote. Hell, you could probably get a dispensation for the registrars to meet you at the curb, verify your eligibility, hand you a ballot and take it back inside to be counted when you’re done. Only thing is, the Prog Socs are too stupid and too crooked to suggest it.

    Not being able to get off from work doesn’t cut it either. Any business failing to let employees off long enough to vote can and should be out of business within the next week; simply by publicizing their corruption. At best, those who were denied time to vote could become the new owners. On the flip side, I’ve been voting for 20 years either before going to work, or after work was over. If you can’t find time within that 12 hour window that day to go vote; you’ve already cast a vote saying it’s not important enough for you to vote. That’s your choice. But I don’t want to hear any moaning and groaning about racism, sexism, ethnicism, religionism, or any other isms as an excuse that you weren’t willing to make an EFFORT to go vote. Freedom isn’t free, and that’s where it starts.

    However, we’re pretty much stuck with mail in. So we have to make sure it’s clean from our end.
    To keep the local voting honest, we need to do several things. We need to ensure that those ballots come from people legally eligible to vote. i.e. They live in the town, they are old enough to vote, they aren’t dead, they are citizens of the country and state, they were the only ones to fill out their ballot, and they only voted once.

    First, find the Republican Party Platform and review it. Guess what? It hasn’t changed from 2016. (Rule #1 for Conservatives, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”} https://ballotpedia.org/The_Republican_Party_Platform,_2020 Find your local committee. Join it. Get yourself into the town voting volunteers. DO something, even if it’s just standing at the parking lot entrance checking license plates for strangers to town. Maybe we can’t save the whole damn country this election; but the 50 to 150 of us who comment here, or just read here, can at least make sure 50 to 150 different town polls in this country are honest.

      1. The GOP was still under that never-to-be-sufficiently-damned consent decree then. They are not any more. Hopefully Trump will have them ready.

    1. Heck, the stuff from 1908 looks pretty familiar:
      The present tendencies of the two parties are even more marked by inherent differences. The trend of Democracy is toward socialism, while the Republican party stands for a wise and regulated individualism. Socialism would destroy wealth, Republicanism would prevent its abuse. Socialism would give to each an equal right to take; Republicanism would give to each an equal right to earn. Socialism would offer an equality of possession which would soon leave no one anything to possess, Republicanism would give equality of opportunity which would assure to each his share of a constantly increasing sum of possessions. In line with this tendency the Democratic party of to-day believes in Government ownership, while the Republican party believes in Government regulation. Ultimately Democracy would have the nation own the people, while Republicanism would have the people own the nation.

      https://the-american-catholic.com/2020/08/19/the-more-things-change/

    1. Given the political color scheme prevalent in America since 2000, that would probably be misinterpreted.

  13. Yeah.

    Right now, I think you and Herb are not correct.

    It is natural to suspect that there is a method to their madness.

    I don’t have spoons to re-litigate the subtle little details that add up to an argument for a 40-60% chance that they have no method. I’m desperately ignoring things, trying to surf the crippling levels of tension to still get my ‘must do’ tasks done. I definitely don’t have the spoons for the level of research and analysis that could provide a greater certainty.

    My local sources of extreme left wing thought are talking BLM, /not/ ‘BLM is great, but look at all the white supremacist infiltrators’. That is fat, stupid, and happy land. To pull off the fraud, they need to have taken damage control for BLM into account. Yes, Kamela Harris is damage control for BLM, someone that they can portray as tough on crime, but they are going into September with profoundly diluted messaging. They were counting on undiluted BLM to carry the day, otherwise they would have kept the spokesmen quiet on ‘white people just need to learn to accept being murdered by junkies’. They tick off the junkie lovers with Harris, and at the same time do not entirely reassure every person who is worried about being murdered or having one’s stuff destroyed by arson. To pull things off they probably need an informed unity of command. Either they do not have a unity of command, or that unity is blind in important ways.

    And there is apparently a ‘documentary’ being distributed from ‘archives’ ‘released’ by the current Iranian regime, covering a coup d’etat in Iran that apparently put the Shah into power. There is some sort of battlespace preparation going on. The Iranian regime has no more understanding of US politics, or ability to successfully deliberately change outcomes, than the Russian regime did in 2016. The PRC has profoundly miscalculated in their PR this cycle, in part because they have likewise have zero clue how a public responds that is not under a tyranny that rules by fear.

    The left is partly a worship and adulation of ‘strength’. They have no emotional reason to contradict or oppose what a foreign communist regime asks of them. They have few reasons to reject the requests of a foreign regime that is otherwise hostile. They have all these other cooks stirring the pot, and not one of them can taste anything.

    The Decision Desk, formerly Ace of Spades, is talking about having a model that favors Biden. That is probably not part of the organization which is making sure it has any clue what it is claiming. Decision Desk, in that same email, mentioned sponsorship by a betting market for elections.

    We’ve confirmed that a fair number of Republican political technicians are grifters. Probably there are grifters among the political technicians of the Democratic Party, and making Biden look viable now would be advantageous for both Democratic and Republican grifters.

    1. I don’t have spoons to re-litigate the subtle little details that add up to an argument for a 40-60% chance that they have no method.

      Maybe it could be rephrased as cargo cult method? Or even rat-with-a-pellet-dispenser method?

      “This action got me a pellet at some point in the past. I’m sure to get another one, eventually, if I just keep doing the thing that got it last time”?

      It’s similar to how game design starts with faster, easier “rewards” and then slows down, which both keeps you playing and gives more room for stuff that is non-rewards, while still keeping you interested enough to play.

      1. Bottom line up front, I have zero formal training in this stuff, and my self study was only partly deliberate. A lot of the stuff I do is processes I learned without any plan, purely for fun. I don’t know what I don’t know about the art, and that implies that my results could be thrown into bizarro land by very basic errors.

        There’s cargo cult/rat with pellet behavior all over the place. The question is the intelligence assessment of there being a viable plan behind of the behavior we are observing.

        Whether it is safe to conclude that the central driving feature is delusional reflex? I can definitely establish that from what I know now, it is a plausible explanation, but I have very near zero confidence that I could establish that it is /the/ explanation.

        I really dunno.

        My conclusions may purely be an artifact of mood /today/, and my contrarian instinct picking Herb’s argument and Sarah’s to argue against. I struggle with pessimism and depression myself.

        I have confidence in my take on hobby fields, like strategy, intelligence, and creative writing. But I know very well that my arguments in my hobby fields are garbage compared to what I can put together for the areas I actually have decent training and experience in.

        I’m pushing on the other fields now, which is both taking all the time and energy I can muster, and leaving me feeling like garbage, even for the stuff I do know and have been getting done. (My emotional habits may be a wee bit unhealthy. 🙂 ) My emotional stability is low, my suspicions of the political situation vary, and I maybe don’t have the grounding in the theory of leadership, organization, and management to have the words for this.

        I’ve just enough business experience to know about situations where people talk about how nice it would be if something happened, then never taken the steps to make it happen. I’ve been the guy who talks about, or thinks about, getting something done, then never makes the time to go do it. I’m working on improving, but have a habit of over-promising and over-committing.

        No actual plan is different from getting buy in and support for implementing a plan that is crazy, not up to over coming reality, or purely cargo cult.

        In conclusion, I am tediously argumentative, and not getting any of the things I have made promises to do done. I hope the boost to my mood from reiterating the positive carries me through enough work to pay back the time and energy spent.

  14. “I’ve spent most of my life since I was fourteen or so doing what I call “reality checking.””

    Okay, you want a reality check? Let’s talk about New York City.

    Oh woe is them, the end of the world hath come. All the rich people who pay all the taxes LEFT this year, and NYC is officially f*cked without them.

    Reality Check: yes, they really did leave. The proximate cause is Corona Chan, but the long term cause is obscene taxation and the unsafe condition of the city. The WuFlu was the straw that finally broke the camel’s back.

    1st derivative Reality Check: They left NYC but they didn’t DIE and they didn’t leave the country. Their money didn’t evaporate, and their businesses didn’t vanish. They just moved. So they’re still out there driving the engine of society like they always did, which means nothing changed but the location.

    Now, rioting.

    Reality Check Chicago: Yes, #BLM did indeed loot the Miracle Mile. Yes, the cops really did let them do it.

    NO, that was not a general uprising/zombie apocalypse. It was an organized, premeditated POLITICAL ATTACK on the mayor by her opposition. Ever wonder why gangs are able to shoot 60 people in an -average- weekend in Chicago? It’s because they have an arrangement with the mayor and the prosecutor’s office. Inside that conglomerate are factions. This was a faction war.

    Reality Check: Yes, Antifa has been rioting in Portland/Seattle/LA/San Francisco for three months non-stop. Yes, the cops are letting them. No, they’re not going to stop.

    NO, that does not make this a general uprising. Again, it’s a special deal some factions got with the mayors/prosecutors. Local politics. The same rioters are getting arrested and then released the same day, to turn up on the street the next night.

    Bottom line, we’re watching the last desperate gasp of a failing political/business model. Why is it failing? Because just like NYC, all the people who were being extorted to PAY for it have -left- and they’re not coming back. They don’t NEED to be there anymore.

    But the world is not coming to an end. Unless you are a DemocRat apparatchik in a big DemocRat city. Like the two generations of managers who spent their whole working lives “building” the Cross-Westchester Expressway in NY. Then I’d say your career is pretty well f*cked.

    So cheer the hell up Sarah, or we’ll throw carp at you. ~:D

    1. “Escape from New York” is starting to look like a best-case scenario. No sympathy here; they worked hard to inflict their troubles upon themselves.

      “Snake Plisskin. I heard you was dead.”

      1. Socialists never really believe you can kill the Golden Goose. They really do think that money comes from the bank or the government.

        But now they’re standing there with a dead goose and no ideas where to get a new one.

        “Stupidity is the only universal capital crime; the sentence is death.” RAH.

        1. Well, they are correct in that money comes from the bank or the government.

          What they fail to understand is having money, be it gold coins or green slips of paper, is not the same thing has having produce or cars or televisions or an aspirin. Nor does it insure you can buy those things. Too much money out there means people add zeroes to prices and suddenly the “Fight for $15” minimum wage actually buys less than the $8 (give or take) minimum wage it replaces. Price controls means it’s no longer worth my while to make more than X aspirin and if you’re not in the first fraction of X buyers you cannot buy any, even if you offer a black market price instead of the official government one.

          1. if I can ever extricate my digit far enough to finish it I have a post about this. A teaser, money is just credit, or to use the English word belief.

          2. Money is a SYMBOL of value. Those idiots believe they can create value by printing more symbols. That’s like believing they can create bread by making more bread wrappers.
            ———————————
            Governments can only print money; they can’t make it worth anything. They can make it worth nothing.

          3. The thing is, ‘money’ is a shared fantasy. It works better than barter – a LOT better – but it is ALWAYS an abstraction. Even when it is precious metals, they don’t have a fixed worth either. Or the Spanish would not have set off an inflationary trend by bringing good from the New World.

        2. They’re right kinda. Money mostly does come from a bank or the government. The mistake is in thinking that money is wealth, when wealth is what you trade the money to get.

      1. Mostly to New Jersey, upstate NY, Connecticut and Long Island. So no change in voting, really. All Red anyway, part of the Clinton Archipelago.

        All they’re doing is getting outside the city limits of NYC to someplace where there’s a functioning police force. But that’s all it takes to kill NYC as a city. Without the taxes of the 1% top earners, the place can’t support itself. Too much corruption.

        Interesting to speculate what this means for the publishing industry. With all the rich men’s daughters who work in it staying home from the office and doing everything by Zoom calls, it now no longer matters a damn that all the publishers are in a five block radius of each other. The girls aren’t all meeting each other in the local bars and restaurants every day for lunch and dinner, not going to each other’s parties and stealing each other’s boyfriends.

        Same goes for the fashion industry and the movie industry. Change is in the air.

          1. From “New York City is dead forever” which was referenced yesterday, this (hoopefully) handy chart:

              1. Democrats aren’t interested in fact and error checking. I posted the infection, hospitalization, and death rates from COVID broken down by race on my FB page (data from the NH.gov site.) Pointed out that white folks were more than 4 times likely to catch it, be hospitalized, or die from it. Had one raving lunatic accuse me of biased interpretation of statistics. I merely pointed out that there was no interpretation, merely comparison of numbers. Then he accused me of having too small a sample size to be statistically significant. I pointed out that the numbers were the total population in NH, not a subsample, and the figures came from the state (yes, there are some shenanigans with what gets counted as a COIVD case, but they’re ALL inflated.) and he still wanted to argue that I was wrong.

                1. and he still wanted to argue that I was wrong.

                  *raises hand*

                  I think you mean, “he still wanted to SAY that I was wrong,” since it sounds like he couldn’t manage an argument, just easily disproven assertions.

                  1. Actually, it would be more precise for me to say, “I think he still wanted to say I was wrong no matter what I said” since I obviously am not telepathic and can’t tell what anyone wants for sure. /sigh No feminine intuition!

                    1. Think desire can be clearly identified from behavior, in this case.

                      Although we could always figure someone had a gun to his head and that’s why he “wanted” to say it.

        1. I suspect a lot of them would have left NYC in a few years anyway. They have moved back out here to NJ, which is a pity since they’re coming to my town, raising taxes, and marching for BLM. this part of NJ used to be rock sold red, now it’s a very bluish purple. That said, don’t count out NJ flipping, Not likely but possible.— lot of anger here. especially since most of us came from NYC to this area to get the hell away from these lunatics.

          Funny thing about the BLM parade in my town. The paper said there were “thousands” participating. The parade went past less than a block from my house and I went down to see who was in it. Usual suspects. No more than 20 people marching and no-one, literally no-one, watching until they got to the town hall where there was a small group. They did one of those picture angle things and made it look like a huge turnout. Lies. Nothing but lies.

          I think it’s very important that they know they need to lie even here in blue-violet Northern NJ.

          Noli Timere.

        2. Rhode Island is nuts, too. We probably won’t go back to the church camp we were working with. Combination of the camp going full-bore progressive and the local (female) pastor griping about how the State should Do More to Help People depite their budget shortfall – why, she had to tap the pastor’s discretionary fund! My husband is a patient, understanding guy, but that was more than he could take.

          1. I am sincerely impressed by your husband, since that wasn’t followed by “and that is why the police won’t allow us into the county.”

            1. He wrote her a long, polite letter laying out the reasons private charity is better than State charity. She acknowledged it and made it clear it didn’t change her mind.
              OTOH, on Sept. 11, 2011 he hauled me out of the same church (it was convenient to the camp) when her predecessor held a memorial service for 9/11. The service included a “Ritual of Penance,” so we could contemplate the ways we might have asked for it. The pastor made the tactical error of asking members of the congregation to speak. I did. My beloved said he was afraid I was going to rip the pastor’s lungs out after the service. (But I had two guys thank me for it afterwards).

              1. Asking for it…

                By applying an insufficient boot to the head in the Mideast after various provocations?

              2. Go Dorothy!
                Penance my a$$.
                Here’s one straight from the Democrat’s 2020 Platform:

                “Democrats will also work to restore trust with our Muslim communities by ensuring the government’s engagement is not discriminatory nor viewed through a security lens.”

                I’m sorry, but only an idiot would not view a Muslim immigrant, or first generation, through a security lens.

                See moron clip above.

    2. > They left NYC but they didn’t DIE and they didn’t leave the country. Their money didn’t evaporate, and their businesses didn’t vanish. They just moved. So they’re still out there driving the engine of society like they always did, which means nothing changed but the location.

      They’re not paying NY and NYC taxes any more, so while they might still be somewhere, as far as NY is concerned they beamed back up to the Mothership and left. Remember, the whole world revolves around Manhattan, and the only purpose of Flyoverland is to supply yokels to marvel at its awesomness.

      1. Every time I go to NYC it’s for a specific purpose only and I leave asap. And I always wonder why anyone would want to live there. Of course I grew up in a place where my nearest neighbors were cows from a farm a mile down the road. The hills, woods, streams and fields were my playground.

    3. >> “So cheer the hell up Sarah, or we’ll throw carp at you.”

      Hang on, I thought we only employed carporal punishment for puns, not depression. Is there a list of carpable offenses around here?

        1. Doesn’t have to all be piscine. “Boot to the Head” is an option. If Sarah’s too busy being disoriented to be depressed that’s still a win, right? 😛

          1. Teacher: Ed Gruberman, you fail to grasp Ti Kwan Leep. Approach me that you might see.

            Ed Gruberman: All right! Finally some action!

            Teacher: Observe closely, class. Boot to the Head! (SH-ZOOMP!)

            Ed Gruberman (drunkenly): Owww! You booted me in the head!

            Teacher: You are lucky, Ed Gruberman. Few novices experience so much of Ti Kwan Leep so soon.

            1. “Yes, master. None of us can hope to defeat you. So we’ve got to gang up on you! GET HIM, GUYS!”
              (Sounds of many boots to the head).
              I love that piece.

                1. My favorite will reading in media is this one:

                  “To my brother Chester, I’d like to leave less than nothing, but that dumb lawyer of mine can’t figure out how to do that.”

        1. I have an emotional support poodle. Maximum Maxwell. If anyone so much as shifts in their chair around here he charges the front door barking up a storm. Also he bites. Not hard, just enough to let you know he’s on the job and you BETTER cheer the hell up. Super supportive.

          1. An emotional support animal whose operating principle is “The bitings will continue until morale improves?”

            …Not sure I like the sound of that, but whatever works for you I guess.

      1. There’s nothing like a carp to the head to really straighten you out when the black dog is hanging around. If nothing else you can smack the dog with it.

        If there are no carp a large flounder will do. ~:D

    4. About Portland …

      Multiple Portland companies plan to move out of downtown office spaces because ongoing BLM protests have made the area ‘unsafe’ – with reports of widespread vandalism and ‘workers being attacked’
      Activists in Portland have taken to the city streets for the last 82 consecutive nights to demonstrate under the banner of Black Lives Matter
      However, some of the rallies have descended into chaos, resulting in violent clashes with police or widespread acts of vandalism
      Businesses in the area now say the perpetual disruptions have caused ‘unsafe conditions’ in the neighborhood – and they want out
      Standard Insurance, whose headquarters are at 900 SW 5th Avenue, say their buildings have been vandalized and many workers assaulted in recent months
      The company has now removed all staff from the area. Many employees had already been relocated because of the on-going pandemic
      Standard says the removal of its workforce from the area is likely temporary but he’s unsure how many workers will return to the company’s downtown locations
      A spokesperson said they will return ‘if conditions in the neighborhood improve’

      1. I notice that ‘unsafe’ and ‘unsafe coalition’s were in scare quotes. How many rapes , assaults, and arsons do they need for it to be unsafe without scare quotes.

        1. How many ‘workers have to be attacked’ to remove the quotes from that?

          My answer is 2, and only because 1 is not ‘workers’.

        2. It depends on who the attacker is, if they’re presumed to be wearing a MAGA hat it’s automatically dangerous, if they’re in Antifa black it’s safe.

  15. Encouraging thoughts – the politicians and political experts who think that they know what is going on are ALSO in bubbles. The only feed back they hear on anything is binary, from sycophants or “trolls”. Meanwhile the marginally engaged are watching television and simultaneously thinking both “I believe black lives matter” (because who actually doesn’t?) and “what the ever living f*ck?”

    People, ALL people, including absolutely everyone, are at heart and foremost always going to prioritize personal safety. The few people out there who make a super big deal about how they’re willing (because of their profound virtue) to be personally unsafe as a gesture of support to the rioters and police defunders are LYING. They say it because they *do* feel safe. Until they don’t. And then what? It’s going to be personal safety and NIMBY all the way.

    Mail in voting is a problem, but other than that, I’m not sure that we’re getting any better information about what’s really going on with people than the polling companies are. The media doesn’t even know what they’re lying about because you have to know the truth in order to lie and I’m positive they haven’t the first clue, and people lie to the poll takers.

    So we’re at a place where we need to depend on faith and understanding of human nature at it’s heart.

    1. See the Chicago Mayor:

      “Lightfoot refused to elaborate on the specific threats, but said she receives them daily against herself, her wife and her home. Comparisons to how the Police Department has protected previous mayors’ homes, such as Rahm Emanuel’s Ravenswood residence, are unfair because “this is a different time like no other,” Lightfoot told reporters.”

      https://pjmedia.com/instapundit/395338/

    2. “People, ALL people, including absolutely everyone, are at heart and foremost always going to prioritize personal safety.”
      Not so! D-Day!

  16. Making my guts into a heart isn’t my first, third or latest move. I think I had to use them to shore myself up after actually breaking my back (tree + tall horse + too fast = teenager with no L1 and bone grafts with associated lingering problems). I’ve always been the family’s worrier and now I’m feeling like the conspiracy theorist.
    My idea of retirement was not having to plan and execute bug outs and siege warfare. Yet here I am. The anxiety is starting to make my brain shut down and I am just about to the point that I can only do one medium chore a day (including self care). I have to keep pushing because I have others that depend on me but each step is getting harder.

    1. The brain part is part of it. The other part is that I have SERIOUS stress exacerbated auto-immune. The kind that if it escalates much more will kill me. It is part of the reason I wouldn’t work for trad pub again IF THEY OFFERED. (They won’t. I’m persona non grata) BUT right now, it’s attempting to mess with vital organs.

  17. Found this at PJ Media, thought it might be of some slight interest to Huns … I think part of the problem is that, with the ChinaFlu Curve Flattening they’ve had the chance to give everyone a taste, just a sample, of their dream-cake and it isn’t selling like they expected …

    The Death Spasms of Marxism Are Making Its Adherents Crazier by the Day
    By Sarah Hoyt
    Is 2020 really any worse than other years? Because my circles, online and off, are convinced that 2020 is something special in the way of crazy.

    Some years, of course, sort of have that vibe, either crazy or depressing. I remember “2016 is a stone-cold killer” and a lot of it had to do with the fact that a lot of well-known celebs hit the age at which they were likely to die.

    And honestly, that might be part of the vibe to 2016 in my circles. I mean, let’s be fair. In our fifties or late forties, we’re not precisely elders on life support, but we are starting to hit the years in which attendance at funerals exceeds attendance at weddings.

    And in our own case – and a lot of my friends’ cases – 2020 was always going to be a year of turmoil, characterized as “the years life changes a lot.” Mostly due to job situations, or kids moving off, or the kind of milestones you hit in late middle age.

    However, none of that justifies, for instance, this haiku making the rounds of my circles (and I can’t credit it as it came to me at several removes) a couple of months ago:

    Bloody hell, what now?
    Oh. Of COURSE this happens now.
    We are all so tired.

    What we are witnessing, in my opinion, at world-level (not just in the U.S.) is sort of a nervous breakdown of the cognitive elites….

    1. The elites in the US and Britain (and to some degree all over Europe and in Australia) have been recently told by the electorate “We don’t like you. Go away.”, and they ain’t coping well.

  18. Yes, the left and the Democrats are dangerous lunatics.

    I remember Dole 1996 and Romney 2012. I was young and naive enough in 1996 to overlook things. I may have been fooling myself in 2012. Romney effin’ marched with people against Floyd George’s death. That is probably confirmation that he was not a serious campaigner in 2012. And yet, the Republicans fund-raised on the theory that he could win, despite possibly having information that would lead them to believe that the outcomes would not break that way.

    The Democrats were drinking their own ink in 2016.

    Maxwell seems to have HRC’s yap shut, unless the podcast is ongoing. But the current intensity is rather close to her butthurt over 2016.

    Every single person in the world is dealing with incomplete information.

    Successful calculated fraud coordinated across an entire country is an information problem. Specifically, you need access to true information that is hidden from the general public.

    There are two aspects of voting along racial lines that might be unpredictable before the election. 1. Whites. If whites had resigned themselves to being murdered by junkies, they might also see it as reciprocal to endorse cops hunting blacks purely for sport. The level of tolerance for pro-BLM virtue signaling makes the latter unlikely, so the former is probably also not true. So, how closely are whites paying attention to the arsons, and the most extreme claims made by BLM? 2. Do blacks seeing having one’s belongings burned down as a price to pay to avoid worse?

    1. … the Republicans fund-raised on the theory that [Romney] could win, despite possibly having information that would lead them to believe that the outcomes would not break that way.

      Win or lose, there are down-ticket candidates who need the boost, and party strategists who need the money.

      Besides, there’s always the chance of something major and unexpected happening to turn the race. That it is also unlikely is beside the point. Sometimes Dewey doesn’t win.

      As for the Duchess of Wherever the Heck she lives … those ball bearings are still rattling …

      Hillary Clinton Implies ‘Foreign Adversary’ Could Help Trump Steal Election
      Since losing the 2016 election, Clinton has repeatedly implied that President Trump has colluded with Russia both during and after his election victory.
      https://www.nationalreview.com/news/democratic-convention-hillary-clinton-implies-foreign-adversary-could-help-trump-steal-election/

      1. Unlike the LOOOONG history of China helping the Clintons. Remember all those millions they had to give back to the communist Chinese government in 1997? How much more did they manage to hide?

        Did the Chinese put Bill up to the Community Reinvestment Act that caused the real estate bubble, and the crash of 2007?

  19. I can’t see the road ahead in this fog. I can’t even see my hand in front of me. But I can offer you a virtual hug, and tell you that we must go on, that we must keep fighting, that we must be here for each other, fighting the good fight “to whatever end”.

    One source of hope: Trump has outmaneuvered his enemies over and over. Another is that the Democrats are losing their grip on the working people, even the working poor. The educated (which should include me) are still under the ‘good liberal’ spell. But the people who’ve been taking it in the pocketbook, and who’ve seen their world on fire? The spell is breaking.

    1. Speaking of breaking the spell: https://pjmedia.com/instapundit/395014/

      A few hundred indictments, and peace restored to all but the most cyanide-blue cities, may be worth more in October than all the possible corrupt FISA warrant guilty pleas.

      Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake!

  20. I fear you’re right.

    Each night my parents are glued to the TV news. They hang on Rachel Maddow’s every word. They’re convinced Trump is stealing mailboxes and raping prostitutes in Russia. Two days ago my mother practically begged me in tears to vote for Biden and Harris, and my father reassured her that there weren’t enough of those unhinged MAGA fanatics to overcome all the average Americans who want to get back to normal, the way things were before Trump divided this country (by fighting back).

    The narrative is firmly in their heads, and it’s pretty similar to the one you wrote.

    1. The parents watch CNN. Religiously.

      I know they have been tossing several bitch-fits about how (badly) the Post Office has been run. Mail sent to their PO box incorrectly, packages with the right address on them showing up on the other size of our zip code, having at least one mail truck towed out of our cul-de-sac. But, when I start proposing things like…oh, let’s say that you need to have your mail-in ballot notarized (and, for free if you can’t afford to!) or any number of anti-fraud measures, they start to scream about vote suppression. Or how Trump is trying to steal the election. Or how the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy is going to destroy us all. And, how everybody that left the state for places that they feel is better than California have drunk the red KoolAide and are just waiting to start lynching people.

      I know that one of the big reasons why is that California has become a supermajority party state and it’s had a lot of things that have allowed the people running the state to avoid reality, such as two of the biggest ports on the West Coast, a tech industry that they carved out a lot of protections for, and a few other things. Without those? We’d be Michigan with better weather.

      Yet, I can’t talk to them about this. Can’t explain. Can’t even really discuss it with them, because they wonder if I’m going insane.

      I remain hopeful. I keep getting the feeling that the major news networks are trying to sell a Biden victory because a Trump win would remove any of their remaining credibility beyond their loyalists. And, any mass rioting after a Trump victory would probably be handled…violently.

      I want to believe that the adults in the room would know this.

      I just don’t know how many there are, that are actually in charge.

      1. if we were to be allowed to saw off the lower third of the state, Michigan wouldn’t be doing too badly.
        Still a lot of stupidity lurking about though, especially in the College towns.

          1. No worries. We have at least four distinct Bobs here.

            Namespace confusions aren’t worth fussing over.

            1. Every Tom, Dick, and Harry is named Bob?

              (I once had that complaint with dealing with no less than SEVEN folks – at once – who all went by ‘Mike’.)

              1. Our current “wait, ANOTHER one?” name is Carlos. My husband works with three, we game with… one or two, I’m not sure… and there’s two from prior work locations.

                It got to the point where I have demanded modifiers.

                So we have QuantumZoobat* Carlos, Leather** Carlos, Mexican*** Carlos, Carlos at Work and No The Other Carlos, plus occasionally Don’t Worry It Doesn’t Matter Carlos****.

                * Not his actual tag
                ** As in does crafting
                *** Favorite food, not is.
                **** My husband knows me so well.

                1. My work client sisters’ name was “Diane”. Get a call. “This is Diane.” Me: “Okay. Which Diane? I know you’re not me.” Caller laugh “*county name*”. After 12 years they’d respond “This is Diane of *county*”. I mean I knew it was one of 10 (out of 100+) locations so narrowed it down some. I mean I could have gone with “one n & e, or no e? Two n’s?” but wouldn’t have narrowed it down enough. There aren’t 10 different ways to spell Diane (not asking for suggestions).

                  1. I wrote before about my family’s Mary’s (ours, yours, big, little, etc., but no Mary Sue. we also have a whole load of Honora’s and a boatload of Margaret’s and Elizabeth’s. That more or less exhausts the women’s names. John, James, Thomas, William, Edmund, Richard, and Patrick exhausts the men’s, except for me though my grandmother always called me Paddy, which is one of my names but not the first.

                    It could be just like the Bruce’s Sketch especially as there’s a branch of us down there in God’s own Country, Australia land of sunshine and sharks and they’re all Johns and Edmunds.

                    1. Mam pulled Pádraig for me out because she wanted a Paddy in her life – marrying a mick wasn’t enough, I suppose. 😉

                2. One upon a time at the process serving firm we had Short Aaron (aka me), Tall Aaron, [redacted] Aaron, and Girl Erin. (This last was important to note since half the legal secretaries in Tucson seem to think Erin is the proper spelling for boys as well as girls.)

                  Girl Erin also briefly worked at Old Tucson (Because Tucson is the World’s Largest Small Town™) with me, but since Key and Peele’s sketch had been out it was just A-a-ron and Erin.

                  1. Oh, the Irish got over in to Tucson? Or just the secretary area?

                    The Irish-Erin is said different, but sometimes I wonder if they’re expecting you to say it “A A Ron.”

                    (Which someone in our area has as a license plate.)

                    1. Well, the Presidio San Agustín del Tucsón was founded by Don Hugh O’Conner 245 years ago, yesterday (the 20th of August), I will allow the reader to form what thoughts they may from that information.

              2. When I was a kid, the classic problem was Chris.

                Especially since it could be either Christopher or Christina.

              3. “Mrs. Sylvester McMonkey McBrave
                Had 23 kids and she named them all Dave.” — Dr Seuss

                😎

              4. And I get to deal with it in real life. The odds of at least two other people on the project team (between the customers and the consultants) being named “Steve” approaches unity. I give my last name for IDing orders in restaurants automatically.

                1. Same for orders.
                  Have had a few folks insist on my given name.
                  And then, invariably, there’s two of us.

                  Had a teacher decide there were too many folks with my name in 3rd grade, so he unilaterally gave me a nickname. And was upset I refused to respond to it. (In fairness, I had no idea he was talking to me, he wasn’t saying my name.)

                    1. When I try to give my last name, some people think it is a first name that I don’t think sounds all that similar. This doesn’t help.

                    2. I like to give a literary character’s name for such purposes. Some days you feel like John Carter, other days like Deejah Thoris and it’s fun to watch whose head swivels when “your” name is called out for pick-up.

                      Although it does require a little more alertness to remembering “your” name when called.

                    3. My sister has established a name that she uses for times when a restaurant insists that you have to give them a name. Choosing a good name is tricky because you want something that’s common enough that people can spell it and pronounce it, but which is not common enough that you’ll have a name collision.

                      I confess that I’ve been tempted to give my name as “Donner” when waiting for a table at a restaurant, but I’m afraid I’d forget that I’d done that and, besides, no one in Texas would get the joke.

                    4. Well there was a time, mid-’70s to late ’70s, not at college, but when working, where using my last name, maiden name, would absolutely not have happened. I was horribly naive. Certain people who thought I was taking a job away from a local, made sure I knew about a certain move star. Today, one would presume that wouldn’t happen, regardless of the reasoning. Lovelace – not that common here; in fact I am related to most of them in this state. Down south it is a very common last name.

                  1. I worked for a professor who had a common Welsh first name, and common Welsh last name. Identical. She said, “Never marry someone whose last name is your first name.” Computer systems hated that combination.

                    1. A friend married someone that has almost the same last name the same as her first name. Complicated by the fact that Chris/Kris both forms can be either gender.

        1. At least it’s not Jock…

          “‘Ach, nay, mistress.’ Not-as-big-as-Medium-Sized-Jock-but-bigger-than-Wee-Jock-Jock wrinkled his face. There’s nay history tae the name, ye ken. But there have been a number o’ brave warriors called No’-as-big-as-Medium-Sized-Jock-but-bigger-than-Wee-Jock-Jock. Why ’tis nearly as famous a name as Wee Jock itself! An’, o’ course, should Wee Jock hisself be taken back to the Last World then I’ll get the name o’ Wee Jock, which isnae to say that I mislike the name o’ No’-as-big-as-Medium-Sized-Jock-but-bigger-than-Wee-Jock-Jock, ye ken. There’s been many a fine story o’ the exploits o’ No’-as-big-as-Medium-Sized-Jock-but-bigger-than-Wee-Jock-Jock,’ the pictsie added, looking so earnest that Tiffany didn’t have the heart to say that they must have been very long stories.”

  21. I live in LA County. The only change in my local area since Mr. Floyd died is one or two loud bangs very late at night somewhere not far away. No riots. No looting. There may have been protests in front of City Hall, but there haven’t been any where I could see them. Just the nightly bang.

    To the best of my knowledge, the surrounding communities are the same. No riots. No looting.

    I’m concerned about the margin of fraud in the election. But without that problem, I’m confident that we’ll be fine.

  22. Me, I’m upbeat.

    One of the great things about being 82 instead of 28, I’m not at all worried about 4 more years, I quite pleased to awake every morning and look forward to maybe 4 more days, yippee!

    Bright days, dark days, highs, lows, civilizations rise, civilizations fall, those of us that picked the right parents were lucky to enjoy one of the really grand high points.

    Save it all? We can die trying or we can try not dying for as long as possible thus preserving the spark for another generation to nurture.

    Based on history, taking the long view there’s a good change we’ll pull through (Hey humanity survived the Disco Era and flourished!) and if we don’t, hey, we had a grand run.

    The cockroaches were here before us, going back over 300 million to Carboniferous period, and they’ll be here after us. If we, lemmingly, lock step over the cliff and the cockroaches inherit the earth, I wish them well.

    Frankly, of course, I’d like to see us go a few more miles, a few more centuries, a few more eons, but if we don’t, we most certainly had a great run!

    Looking back or looking forward, and hour or an eon, if I take time to take a deep breath, I find it hard not to be upbeat.

    Sara, remember a host of Heinlein’s characters survived The Crazy Years, I’m rather sure in spite of his definition of ‘Bad Luck, we can too.

  23. I would offer you the thoughts of Field Marshal Sir William Slim who took an army that had suffered one of the most comprehensive defeats in history and turned it about until it had utterly destroyed an entire Japanese army in Burma. This is from Defeat into Victory

    “The only test of generalship is success, and I had succeeded in nothing I had attempted…The soldier may comfort himself with the thought that, whatever the result, he has done his duty faithfully and steadfastly, but the commander has failed in his duty if he has not won victory, for that is his duty. He has no other comparable to it. He will go over in his mind the events of the campaign. ‘Here, he will think, ‘I went wrong; here I took council of my fears when I should have been bold; there I should have waited to gather strength, not struck piecemeal; at such a moment I failed to grasp opportunity when it was presented to me.’ He will remember the soldiers whom he sent into attack that failed and who did not come back. He will recall the look in the eyes of men who trusted him. ‘I have failed them,’ he will say to himself, ‘and failed my country!’ He will see himself for what he is, a defeated general. In a dark hour, he will turn in upon himself and question the very foundations of his leadership and his manhood.

    And then he must stop! For, if he is ever to command in battle again, he must shake off these regrets, and stamp on them, as they claw at his will and self confidence. He must beat off these attacks he delivers against himself, and cast out the doubts born of failure. Forget them, and remember only the lessons to be learnt from defeat, they are than from victory.”

    We are all warriors in this fight, happy warriors for preference, and the only way we can be beaten is to despair.

  24. More from Slim. When I still managed people I would always keep these principles in mind, especially the spiritual ones, the material ones not so much. You can see from these exactly why the adversary’s strategy is to isolate and ridicule. I think Slim is, if not the greatest general — though that case can be made — the greatest human being to be a great general.

    From Defeat into Victory

    “Morale is a state of mind. It is that intangible force which will move a whole group of men to give their last ounce to achieve something, without counting the cost to themselves; that makes them feel they are part of something greater than themselves. … I remember sitting in my office and tabulating these foundations of morale something like this:

    1. Spritual

    (a) There must be a great and noble object.

    (b) Its achievement must be vital.

    (c) The method of achievement must be active, aggressive.

    (d) The man must feel that what he is and what he does matters directly towards the attainment of the object.

    2. Intellectual

    (a) He must be convinced that the object can be attained; that it is not out of reach

    (b) He must see, too, that the organization to which he belongs and which is striving to attain the object is an efficient one.

    (c) He must have confidence in his leaders and know that whatever dangers and hardships he is called upon to suffer, his life will not be lightly flung away.

    3. Material

    (a) The man must feel that he will get a fair deal from his commanders and from the army generally.

    (b) He must, as far as humanly posssible, be given the best weapons and equipment for his task.

    (c) His living and working conditions must be made as good as they can be.“

  25. When Moses led Israel out of Egypt, God had them go to a location at the Red Sea where they could not cross and could not progress in either direction along the shore line. When the Egyptian army came up the valley, the way of retreat was blocked. Disaster was apparently imminent. Moses said:
    Exo 14:13 NET Moses said to the people, “Do not fear! Stand firm and see the salvation of the LORD that he will provide for you today; for the Egyptians that you see today you will never, ever see again.

    We don’t have a Moses, but we have Moses’ God, which is much better.

    Petition the Lord for mercy, confessing your sin and the sin of the nation.

    Organize and make plans to secure the integrity of the vote in your precinct, county, state. Do it quickly. Inundate county, state, and federal officials with concerns and demands for action.

    Organize lines of communication in case Biden wins.

    Stop looking with fear at any man. As Cromwell said, “Because I fear God, I have no man to fear”.

    And stop looking at the past wistfully. Ecc 7:10 ISV Never ask “Why does the past seem so much better than now?” because this question does not come from wisdom.

    We were made by God for the time we live in, so fear not, trust the Lord, and keep your powder dry.

  26. Two thoughts:

    We don’t face certain doom, but we do face uncertainty. That can be harder on the nerves than certain doom.

    The ‘rona was a stroke of extraordinary good fortune for the enemy. If you believe that there’s a Special Providence that watches over fools, drunks, and the United States of America, then we’re due for a stroke of good fortune of our own.

    1. It’s peeling off the masks of those that thought they were going to be our masters and exposed them to the world.

      Everybody can see what is under their masks and what they want to do to us.

      And, you can believe that Tommy sees.

    2. I’d argue that WuFlu worked in our favor as well, as equestriaverse said, the masks came off. They were so excited about what they could do in the name of protection from ‘rona that they lost track of all their carefully crafted story lines and public faces. The masks fell off and they didn’t care because they thought that this was their moment. That their complete control was now inevitable. But then, the hoi polloi, failing to grasp what an insane evil racist president we have in OrangeManBad, did the unthinkable. Again. (2016 was the first time we truly did the unthinkable). We pushed back against those that would defund the police, against those that would tell us to put up with rioting, against those that would strip us of the ability to make a living.

      I have seen more and more signs that the silent majority is fed up. They are not only fed up, but they are becoming vocal and silent no longer. I’m finding more friends who are speaking out. Several people have mentioned that it’s going to be ugly if (I think when…) Trump wins in November. Yes, it will. But, it will also be in the usual spots…the cities already reeling from almost three months of non-stop rioting. The blue strongholds will see the most.

      As you’ve been saying Sarah, be not afraid. This is the dark before the dawn. And, as somebody said above, if I go down, it will be with both middle fingers fully extended accompanied by loud vocalizations.

      We got this.

      1. If I go down, I want it to be with my TRIGGER finger extended, surrounded by a big pile of brass.

  27. I keep listening to the news, and I keep thinking of things that I’ve heard when people knew that they were in trouble and bluffing is the only way they could get out. It’s like the people playing cash-float games with their money, because they can’t do anything else.

    It feels an awful lot like the run up to 2016, I remember that everyone in the press was saying that “Trump would never win, Hillary! is going to be President because it’s her turn now…”

    …and Trump wins.

    And, they keep throwing scandal after scandal after him…and nothing ever quite sticks.

    Even the post office…you’re seeing leaks from the corners that a lot of the things going on were Obama-era requirements and proposals.

    This doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t get cocky. Go after everybody that cheats, and if nobody will prosecute, go after them. Hard. Keep your patch of the world in good shape, help people out, and be ready for the bad times, hope for the good times.

    And, be not afraid.

    1. And, be not afraid.

      Or go ahead, be afraid, be very afraid — whattya gonna do? Quit? Roll over and let them have their way with us?

      I don’t think so. Not me, not you. If nothing else I plan to spit in their beady bloodshot eye. I am going to insist America was great, is great and will stay great — and they ain’t America.

      And when I die I know where I am going.

  28. I keep thinking of the words of the British general Edward Spears, describing his feelings in the aftermath of Munich:

    “Like most people, I have had my private sorrows, but there is no loss that can compare with the agony of losing one’s country, and that is what some of us felt when England accepted Munich. All we believed in seemed to have lost substance.

    The life of each of us has roots without which it must wither; these derive sustenance from the soil of our native land, its thoughts, its way of life, its magnificent history; the lineage of the British race is our inspiration. The past tells us what the future should be. When we threw the Czechs to the Nazi wolves, it seemed to me as if the beacon lit centuries ago, and ever since lighting our way, had suddenly gone out, and I could not see ahead.”

    But I also remind myself that it was only two years after Munich that Britain demonstrated its magnificent resistance to Nazi conquest. Perhaps the United States of America will similarly rediscover its spirit.

  29. Frankly, I don’t see Biden/Harris as all that different than Carter. Granted, I was a kid when Carter was Pres. so I don’t have a whole lot to go by. Yes, it will be bad if Biden/Harris wins, but how bad really? My understanding is that four years of Carter practically guaranteed Reagan a win. So, IF Biden/Harris wins, we batten down the hatches for four years. Obstruct the worst of the Marxist policies as best as we can, and wait for the next election. Hopefully, the Republicans will get off their assets and pick a winner, and then we can get down to the work of fixing things… again…

    The worst of the Marxist bs that Biden/Harris are planning isn’t even approved of by a majority of Democrats. Let alone a majority of Americans. That’s why Harris didn’t even make it to the first D primary. Sure, now that they are campaigning in earnest, expect them to shift back to the center, IF they talk about policy at all. Right now, they have shut up and are not even hinting at policy. They might not talk about policy from here on out. Didn’t Dewey try that? See what it got HIM?

    IF they win (still an IF in my book), They’ll either show their Marxist spots and be gone in four years, or they’ll hide them and it’ll be a toss-up in four years when even (what they believe is) their more moderate ideas tank the economy. As long as the Republicans get their act together…. That, of course, is also a big IF when talking about a party pre-destined to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

    Hey, it’s a positive as I can be. 🙂

    1. When Carter was president, the Left was not yet as entrenched in media, academia, and organizations of all types as they later became. Social media did not yet exist, so the monitoring and control of personal conversations did not happen, except in the rare and special case of wiretaps. Vast numbers of people had not then adopted a political worldview as a substitute religion.

      If the Dems win the presidency, and especially if they also increase their strength in Congress, I think that recovery…if possible at all…will be much more difficult than it was from the Carter administration.

      I am by no means counseling despair, rather, counseling a maximum effort NOW. Support the candidates that you like, financially and otherwise, as powerfully as you can.

      1. I don’t think a Dem win would be as insurmountable as all that. Yes, they have a pretty strong lock on the media (both social and news); however, I also know they are riding a pretty tiger of lies. All it takes is the wrong (right?) mistake at the wrong (right?) time, and people will see them for what they are.

        Americans — people in general — don’t like to be lied to.

      2. When Carter was president, the Left was not yet as entrenched in media, academia, and organizations of all types as they later became.

        I wasn’t born yet, and all my history teachers wouldn’t have even thought of laying out the timeline for that because they remembered it, so it couldn’t possibly be considered history, but wasn’t that way before Limbaugh showed up as a gob-smacking shock to the progs that there was anybody who disagreed with them?

        When the Left didn’t have to spend so much time trying to control the narrative in the media because there wasn’t anything to challenge it?

        Even worse than it was in the 90s, which I do kind of remember?

      3. I was in high school when Carter was president. And, yes, the Marxists were in the public school system (I was in San Diego, and California was first with that…yay). The guy I took AP US Gov from was a full out Marxist. Started in on the military using My Lai. Not the smartest thing to do in a school full of military kids.

        And, yeah, Carter actually counseled despair. The idea was that Nixon and Ford had created and never solved so many moral problems that the US was never going to recover. His “fireside chats” were so down. Especially the malaise one. I do remember that. My dad was pissed that our elected leader would tell us that we were not capable of rising up.

        I think we’re in a similar spot now. Use the lessons of the past, don’t despair and for sure fight back. Stand up, speak out. There are many who think along similar lines. Find them. Support candidates and policies you like. Do it. And do it with a smile…because the left gets really scared when we smile.

        1. Victory wasn’t even credible. The very best we could hope for was to maintain the status quo, but that was probably not possible.

          Yah. Unka Jimmuh wasn’t the only one peddling that line.

      4. I cast my first vote for Ford. Didn’t help. Carter was so awful that Ronald Reagan booted him out in a landslide after one term. Fortunately, we got a good President that time.

    2. Carter was a generally nice guy who loved his fellow man and his country. But he had advanced to his level of incompetence by the time he became Governor of Georgia. He was even less able to function as President.
      Biden/Harris are not incompetent to that same level. Biden is a good retail politician. Harris is pretty smart. I don’t think it sets up the same way.

      1. Biden may have been “a good retail politician,” if you ignore the plagiarizing, but something’s off with him now. Listened to the segment which ended Jill Biden’s speech, and he really did say, “I’m Joe Biden’s husband.” It’s way too easy to imagine a Jill Biden/Kamala Harris cage match over who gets to run the government by running Joe.

    3. When Carter was president the courts were still fairly reliable, with the Constitution only springing to life sporadically. The judicial nomination battles only truly turned ferocious during Reagan’s tenure, particularly with the Supreme Court nomination of Robert Bork, one of (if not the) preeminent judicial scholars of the time, whose suitability fr the Court had been publicly acknowledged by the Senate Judiciary Committee chairman, some joe from Delaware named Biden. While Teddy Chappaquiddick’s diatribe about “Robert Bork’s America …” gets all the airplay today, it was Biden, eager to curry favor with his Left-wing masters, who steered the committee into the rapids of character assassination.

      Stage management was a key part of this made-for-tv political drama, and one of the central cast members was the Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman, Delaware Senator Joe Biden. His former staffers later admitted that chairman Biden hatched a plan to work with outside advocacy groups to heighten the visibility of the Bork hearings. Biden thought a Supreme Court fight could be a key lever to boosting his name recognition in advance of the 1988 Democratic primary.
      https://pjmedia.com/news-and-politics/tyler-o-neil/2019/10/19/moderate-joe-biden-bragged-about-the-political-hit-job-on-robert-bork-n69803

      In his book, Them: Why We Hate Each Other—and How to Heal, Senator Ben Sasse writes:

      “Liberal activist groups had decided, for the first time in American history, to wage an electronic-era political campaign against a Supreme Court candidacy, and the media aided the effort, covering the nomination not as a debate over competing ideas about the role of the American judiciary, but as a battle of good versus evil,” Sasse explained. “It is unusual for a sitting justice to comment publicly on politics at all, let alone on a court confirmation battle, but left-of-center Justice John Paul Stevens not only defended Bork against Kennedy’s accusations, but recommended his confirmation.”

      So Biden, already preparing for his presidential run as Neil Kinnock, is one of those who injected the hyper-partisan toxin into our system.

    4. If Biden/Harris win, Harris will be President within 6 months, maybe before Biden can even take office. She will then pick a Vice President. And they will be off to the races. Vote by Mail will be enshrined before the 2022 elections. The censorship of social media will become even more harsh. The Media will really become the Voice of the government. All illegals will become citizens. The flood gates of the border will be thrown open and there will be nothing that can be done about short of violence. Which will be called RACISM laud and long. If the Democrats win in November. You can die on your knees or fight on your feet. You will have no other option. No Republican will be able to win a national election again.

      Harris has already said that she will be coming after Trump supporters. With the Deep State behind her and NOTHING to stop her, she will RULE, she will NOT Govern.

      I am sorry, but what they say they will do the Senate cannot stop, The Courts cannot stop. Obama proved that the illegals could be made legal and the Courts stopped Trump from being able to do anything about it. Harris will allow no limits to be placed on her and she will have BLM and Antifa as her enforcers.

      When they tell you what they will do BELIEVE them.

  30. BGE…General Slim showed a lot of wisdom in his writing about leadership, and ‘Defeat Into Victory’ is a very interesting book. (I see it is now available on Kindle as well as on paper)

    Another general whose thoughts on leadership are very much applicable to non-military contexts as well as to military ones is Field Marshal Lord Wavell. Here’s what he said about Sarcasm:

    “Explosions of temper do not necessarily ruin a general’s reputation or influence with his troops; it is almost expected of them (“the privileged irascibility of senior officers,” someone has written), and it is not always resented, sometimes even admired, except by those immediately concerned. But *sarcasm is always resented and seldom forgiven*. In the Peninsula the bitter sarcastic tongue of Craufurd, the brilliant but erratic leader of the Light Division, was much more wounding and feared than the more violent outbursts of Picton, a rough, hot-tempered man.

    A few pages later, Wavell again addresses the topic of sarcasm:

    “He (the general) should never indulge in sarcasm, which is being clever at someone else’s expense, and always offends.”

    Being clever at some else’s expense…under this definition, there is a great deal of sarcasm going on in America today, especially via the media, and it is as toxic as Wavell said it would be.

    1. I’ve been a Wavell fan since I read Bernard Fergusson’s Portrait of a Soldier. My uncle, the guardsman, was a Wavell fan, I have his signed copy of Fergusson’s book. My uncle hated Montgomery. Slim, I found on my own. I’ve been a Slim fan boy since my twenties.

      I agree about sarcasm, though it is a major failing of mine. There is a great lack of kindness in public life and that lack of kindness has penetrated too many areas of our lives.

  31. I don’t have a picture handy because it’s in the calf puppet which we use for sacrifice in class, but I have knitted one anatomically correct heart and it would be my honor to knit one for you. So many, many times your words -in stories, blogs, and the diner -have lifted me. Let it be my turn to lift you a bit.

  32. I cannot despair. 1. It’s a sin. 2. I teach and tell stories. This week has been a vertical learning curve, for various reasons, but I refuse to give in. Yes, the .gov may shove us back into our houses, or make things even trickier, but we have plans for those. I’m ticked. Ticked Alma is not pretty. I’m going to win the battle this week, and next week, and the week after, until I get MY Day Job back, dang it! I’ve put Within Temptation’s ‘Iron” on loop in my mental play-list.

    1. It’s not easy, it’s not fun, but we can do this. You, me, Drak, Herb, Fox, Bob, Bob, and Bob, PK, Jeff, BGE, Equestria, Mary . . . We can do this!

      1. >> “You, me, Drak, Herb, Fox, Bob, Bob, and Bob”

        [raised eyebrow]

        Sarah, have you been buying Bobs in bulk?

                    1. Heh. I always think of a parody done by a guy at an Especially For Youth conference (it’s a Mormon thing) I attended as a teen. He based it off an incident in First Nephi…

                      “Hello Laban my old friend/I’ve come to speak with you again/Remember me my name is Nephi/You tried to kill me you’re a mean guy”…I always chuckle. (The parody title was “The Sound of Slicing”, as that incident ends with Laban getting his head cut off…)

                    2. Okay, that is interesting. Why is his accent noticeably Dutch on “Sound of Silence”, but not on “Your Man”? Is it because he learned “Sound of Silence” a long time ago? Or are the words just including more sounds that are hard for him as a non-native speaker?

                    1. Henk does really good guitar on that. He also does a great job on the low tones of his voice, as well as the English and the transition to singing high. But it is an obvious smoulder song, and he doesn’t work that emotional side of the song at all. I guess he was just having fun.

                  1. While I still prefer Disturbed’s version best, he did a fantastic job here. And it was very sweet, him moving so far out of his comfort zone for Floor. (I mean, is it just me, or does EVERYONE fall in love with Floor, no matter where they’re from or their actual usual gender preference…? I mean, I’m a straight woman and I freely admit, I’m in love with Floor 😀 )

                    1. Floor is everyone’s favorite sister at the least
                      Except Rudy, who needs help.
                      (Rudy claims, seriously, Tarja was not fired, but quit of her own accord, the open letter and Tarja’s open reply don’t exist in his universe, and he runs around adding a dislike to every Floor containing video out there, probably even the duet of Over The Hills Tarja had Floor do with her)

                    2. I think it’s that smile.

                      She’s a very handsome woman, and I keep getting the same kind of “I really hope you don’t get angry” that…what’s his name, the guy who played Angel in Buffy and the dude in Bones… has, while still being confident in her ability to do what she does.

                      And then she’s smiling, and it starts with her eyes, which don’t really stand out in her face until that point. (Even with all the makeup in that song.)

                      Dang, I wanna be that competent when I grow up…..

                    3. Yeah, I’ve seen a couple of Tarja nuts floating around the Ghost Love Score reaction video comments (which are, unlike most comments out there, generally quite lovely and entertaining).

                      And yeah, she has a lovely smile. And then she starts to sing…

                      I gather she really IS a genuinely nice, kind, humble person. So that helps as well.

                    4. Also, looking at the album cover for the season 12 of Beste Zangers…it’s freakin’ hilarious that she’s more than a full head taller than EVERYONE else. (I’m pretty sure she’s taller than everyone else in Nightwish too, although everyone but the guitarist is at least around six feet or so. The guitarist, on the other hand, is 5’2″…and it’s kind of funny whenever he passes behind her on stage because he looks TINY.)

                    5. I think it’s her love of the music and her enthusiasm. It radiates through her, and into her singing. There’s just something there. I’ve been around a few other people like that, one also a musician.

                1. I don’t know, but I hear there’s nepotism involved in these sales. You get a discount if Bob’s your uncle.

        1. I thought it was a square dance thing …

          Circle Left
          Allemande Right
          Do Si Do
          Promenade
          Roll Away To A Half Sashay
          Bob, Bob, and Bob

  33. Dealing with uncertainty is the hardest thing I have to do now, because I feel that I havebto plan and game out every possible outcome, and consider what, if anything, I could do to counter the problems and survive the mess.
    Obviously, I can’t plan for everything, so at times, I despair, for there are too many possibilities over which I could have no control, no matter how prepared I was.
    This leads me to inertia, and it is hard for me to find the will to restart, rather than escape into a book or online forum.
    Thanks for sharing your successes, hopes, dreams, and nightmares with us.
    You, and your commenters, have helped me to find my way through the storms of the past many years.
    Thanks. John Sage

    P.S. I recently saw this ad for a black female GOP state candidate from Baltimore. Running for the seat Elija Cummings had.
    I found it encouraging. You might also.
    Kimberly Klacik, MD-7
    Twitter: @kimKBaltimore , and linked from PJ Media

  34. And for complete 2020 bat *beep* bingo, after reading through what the rules are for an election that fails to produce a president, it is actually conceivable that we could end up with a Harris/Trump administration come January 21st.

    Turns out, while the House votes for the POTUS, the Senate picks the VP…

      1. True, and of the states 26 of them have a >50% Republican Representative list, so it could end up being a Trump/Pence administration. On the other hand, it will be a 2020 House that decides it, rather than to 2018 House so all bets are really off.

        It’s more just the legitimate possibility that we may end up with a Harris/Trump or Biden/Pence administration that makes this whole fubar so hilariously deliciously American. And I’m pretty sure the authors planned it deliberately too… (What better way to ensure a peaceful resolution of a hyper contentious election that have the only viable result be both parties end up with veto power over each other? It’s the ultimate troll!)

    1. It couldn’t be Harris/Trump, the electors cast a vote for President and a separate vote for Vice President. If no candidate receives a majority of the electors chosen (meaning the states that don’t certify their results by December 8th don’t count and the 270 threshold is lowered) then the election goes to the House or Senate. The House votes (by state) for President from the top 3 EC vote winners and the Senate votes (as normal) for VP from the top 3 of that EC vote.

      So you could have Biden/Pence or Trump/Harris.

        1. Does the VP have any independent constitutional powers besides casting tie-breaker votes in the Senate? If not, a Trump/Harris admin might not be so bad. Harris could be kept almost completely neutered as long as Trump remained healthy.

          The one hitch I see is that assassination attempts would be VERY likely at that point.

      1. That had been my thoughts, too. I cannot eradicate the smile provoked by a Trump/Harris Administration. It could be the first administration in which the vice-president ironed the president’s shirts and fixed him sandwiches.

  35. I had planned on doing my semi-weekly “Ian tries and fails to understand ‘humans’, whatever those are” post this morning, but more cheery topics were needed here.

    Problem: my primary model of “society” (defined broadly; “community”, etc are included) is not too far from The Prisoner: at best it is a rhetorical spook, at worst exists entirely to be the eternal boot. Whatever it is the one thing it absolutely *can* *not* be is something that the individual is integrated into in a mutually beneficial way, which — I think — is how most people view it more or less.

    (this also connects to my badly expressed attempts to understand patriotism a few weeks (months?) ago)

    Of course a strict reading of that would mean that humans literally can’t talk to each other without horribleness ensuing…..

    On the other side I have Jordan Peterson’s point that people who fail to integrate into society go either insane, or murderously insane. This I also know to be true.

    This is also complicated by the fact that I’m not sure where the boundary lines are between my real beliefs / what the proverbial voices in the head say my beliefs should be / correct gut reactions / incorrect gut reactions.

    When I hear the descriptions people give of younger generations completely unmoored from foundations I recognize it, but in a different way.

    I don’t have the Marxist payload. I have reasonably solid morals.

    But the integrate-into-groups circuits…. well they *do* work, as I am able to have this conversation. But it is like they can’t communicate with any other system.

    And the “reasonably solid morals” part is only “reasonably” because some of them are screwed up in a “all group activity is evil” direction.

        1. I work with at least one autist, perhaps two. One fellow gets by rather well, but hasn’t been pandered to. The other… clearly coddled some… I break his world by *existing* such as I do.

          And.. humans are weird!

        2. I’ll have you know that I have never been officially diagnosed with autism or any related Oddness!

          Actually I have evidence going both ways. Plus stepping into analytical mode to try and figure out what I’ve learned That Just Ain’t So naturally appears much more ’tism than normal.

        3. *blink*

          I am an idiot.

          For years I’ve been trying to figure out if I have mild autism, or just have a sufficiently Odd childhood to create a decent simulation of it.

          It never occurred to me that it could be the other way around: mild autism causing me to learn more deeply from the environment things that would go on to screw me up later. Which then appears to be caused entirely by Just Ain’t Sos.

          1. Not an idiot, no. Just like me learning about dating and proper manners from books in the library. Books written in the 1950s and early 1960s. Then I wondered what I was missing, or why people my age didn’t act like the books said we were supposed to.

            I appreciated the sentiment of a grad school prof (who had won “best dressed” along with “best teacher” for many years.) “I research and teach in the 1800s, so why not dress that way too?” I also think he sort of missed not being in military uniform, so three-piece suits reduced the “what am I going to wear today” worries.

  36. It’s okay, Sarah. Be of good cheer. I have some faith you can borrow.

    I specifically will address the “once states vote by mail they never elect a republican again” canard. It seems every election someone trots out some sort of historical trend that proves that one side or the other is a shoo-in. Some professor that’s correctly called all the presidential elections since 1956 will say that his data says that candidate X will win, or someone will point out that in every presidential election year (except two!) the incumbent candidate that has an odd number of letters in his name has won reelection every time (except two!) or some such rot.

    And that’s just what it is: rot. All of those sorts of things are true, until they aren’t any more. Look, you can’t say that the trend is true unless you can explain why the trend is true. In the case where states that are all mail-in voting always elect democrats, they elected democrats even before mail-in voting, didn’t they? The mail-in voting results in those cases would appear to be a fair result, wouldn’t it? Now, it may be that there are people who are using that fact about mail-in voting to make predictions about the outcomes in states that haven’t predictably voted democrat, but is it predictive? Does going to mail-in voting turn the red or even purplish states pure blue? Not in and of itself, no. To think otherwise is pure cargo-cult thinking.

    Now, I know what’s being implied. I know that what you’re worried about is the “margin of fraud,” but the outcomes of the mail-in elections up to now have been pretty fair, it seems to me. At least up to the reliability of the postal service, anyway. Look, we have seen fraud in in-person voting, too. (Boxes of ballots in the trunk of a car? Seriously? Whoever did that should have gone to jail for mishandling ballots.) I’m confident that the vast majority of the people who handle and count the ballots only want a free and fair election. That’s nearly all that’s required for a fair result. You kind of have to count on the people with vested interests in the election having the a particular outcome from providing the rest of the necessary scrutiny of the people with vested interests in the election having the opposite outcome. That’s worked pretty well up to now.

    Let me assure you that I am not a fan of mail-in voting. Running an in-person election is a difficult, time-consuming, and expensive task, but it also is arguably the most important part of the political process, and trying to take shortcuts with it to save costs or to make it more convenient is, um, unwise.

    Is the republican party dysfunctional? Well, of course it is! You can’t have an organization that isn’t screwed up in some way, and the larger the organization is, the more screwed up it is. That implies that the democrat party is also dysfunctional, which it is, but I go further and say that the democrat party has been inviting dysfunctional people to be their base to the point where there’s hardly a functional person left in it any more. That situation hardly makes for the ability to rig elections, even if I thought it was likely.

    So, nobody knows what the outcome will be. That means that you don’t know, too. You can choose to believe the mopes, who also don’t know how it’s going to go, who say all hope is lost or you can come along with me and we can do our darnedest to make happen what we know to be the best possible outcome.

      1. Thing is, though…Colorado was taken over by far-left Californians before they did this. They have NOT taken over a lot of the places where mail-in voting is now going to be forced upon us (well, and also those places are still having in-person voting). So there’s some hope there.

  37. I may not be loud, but I try to do the right thing, not the trendy thing. Going forward, that might be the right thing not the fully-legal thing. But that remains. Because right and wrong are transcendent and not set by whim or the decree of any tyrant (elected, fraudulently elected I don’t care which). I don’t know what the cost will be. That remains to be seen. And I will teach my children the same. That right and wrong matter, and our actions matter. That humans are the image-bearers of God and thus all matter. I think a lot of the good in America comes from that being deep in the culture. Individuals matter. Our choices matter.

    ~
    Right is not right
    Which alters when it alteration finds,
    Or bends with the woke to remove:
    O, no! it is an ever-fixed mark
    That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
    It is the star to every wandering bark,
    Whose worth’s unknown, although his height is taken.
    ~
    (With massive apologies to the Bard, but this one popped into my head as I was typing out my post)

  38. Be not afraid. (I have been beaten to this punch several times). I still believe in divine providence, less-than-divine American orneriness, and to a lesser but substantial extent, Trump’s gleeful habit of throwing a spanner in the works. I pray, I work to the extent that I can (most of my skills are cerebral), and I pray some more.

  39. “Private Joker is silly and he’s ignorant but he’s got GUTS, and in the Marines, guts is enough.”

  40. It’s always darkest just before dawn. And, as was noted above, remember who we serve. The God who created us and allowed our country to exist is still in charge of the world.

    I’ve noticed that God always come through at exactly the right time, never too soon and never too late. And even absolute disasters bring about his will in the world. It could be that America falls this election, and secedes its place on the world stage. If so, then so be it. But ultimately, God is going to win. I’ve read the book of Revelation. God wins in the end. Just when it looks bleakest and the Antichrist has complete power, God steps in and deals with him. To quote Daniel 11:45, “…He shall come to his end, with none to help him.” And that’s it. God is in control and will win. It’s not a question of whether God is on our side, but if we are on his.

  41. Everything that lives, dies, Mrs. Hoyt. Greebo, the Salami Cat, our grandmothers (Ah! For another ora de cafe, just once more!) and yes, The United States of America. Dead and down to dust and ashes. No point in breaking your heart over it, because it will happen. The cost of love is death and pain, and ah, sometimes the weeping is without end; but love is worth it.

    But also? Death is a lie. We are amphibians. Half matter, half super-natural eternal stuff that gods and angels are made of. The you that was you 20 years ago no longer exists, brain, body, molecules, all have changed and been replaced, but the you-that-is-you is just as real today as 20, 30, 40, half a century ago. And there exists a Mind and a Being capable of encompassing all that is or was that is bright, and true, and good, and holding it secure forever. When you start getting really small or really big, it all starts to dissolve into mathematics and metaphysics and poetry.

    Oh? And did I forget to mention? Everything gets born again! The fierce and inexorable armies of spring conquer winter. The sun chases away the night. The child cries out and the mother nurses it and the father provides for them both and the new miracle lives and grows and makes… wonder!

    We will raise our children to be the Thomas Paines and the George Washingtons, will we not? Let them wrap us in oil-soaked rags and use our screaming boddies to light their garden-parties; sell our daughters to the public brothels, and scream all Hell at us. It will be so hard I cannot imagine it and I fear to fail the test. No matter. I’ll go down fighting just the same. So they will fail utterly, as they have failed before. How can they touch what is eternal?

    And who are we, Mrs. Hoyt? We’re the ones who do hard things. So…

    In the end, we win, they lose. Ca ira.

  42. I’ve been accused many times … on this blog of being an optimist. I’m not. I’m actually a dark, despairing pessimist …

    Welcome to the club! I am always confident things will go badly, plans spin awry, hoped for heroes will have clay feet and that in the end nothing I do will much matter. So I does my duty, sticks to my principles, and take pleasure in my darkest expectations being frustrated.

    Being a pessimist means wearing a belt, suspenders, and clean, hole-free underwear.

    1. Being a pessimist may also mean wearing something that can put holes in other people’s clothing. YMMV.

        1. That’s a letter opener, sir! The other is simply a high speed drill. Ruger sells them in several sizes.

  43. Sarah, don’t let the rhymes-with-dastards get you down. The mainstream media is bad. It’s a major part of the problems in your country right now. But their power is largely illusionary. After nearly three months of full court all media push and anarchy in major cities, they can’t even make black people support defunding the police:

    https://www.newsweek.com/81-black-americans-dont-want-less-police-presence-despite-protestssome-want-more-cops-poll-1523093

    And speaking of those riots, every nigh the authorities sit back and let anarchists rule the streets, the radical left is losing support. The media is trying not to notice, but the people who live in those cities see it. They clean up the mess every morning. And they’re not happy. They can chant and kneel and agitate for race war all they want, but the people whom all this mayhem is supposedly being done for aren’t having it. And that gives me hope.

    But it’s not going to be sunshine and roses. Even an agnostic like me is offering a prayer for your country right now.

    1. Thing is, it is precisely the blacks who would be last persuaded that the police should be defunded.

      Okay, fresh out of college black journalists apparently think they have a near certainty of early death by cop. a) Fresh from college youngsters of all races are idiots out of touch with the institutional memory of their birth families b) Journalism majors are especially likely to have picked that major because of innumeracy.

      The theory of defunding police includes claims like cops hunting blacks for sport. The lived experience of American blacks would seem to include little things like whether that was very true, or if it was more true that a lot of deaths are caused by criminals.

      Americans generally have more assumption than direct knowledge of distant portions of America. In particular, there are many white Americans who do not personally know if cops are hunting blacks for sport or not. It is a subset of these who are persuadable that defunding cops is a good idea. It is a subset of those so persuadable that can be easily convinced that burning down poor black neighborhoods is opposition to white supremacism, instead of implementation.

      1. Gallup had a poll saying 80%+ of black Americans want police maintained at the current level *at minimum* or increased if possible.

        I believe the key line is “Keep the damned gangbangers and pushers away from our kids!”

    1. “We are men of action, lies do not become us.”

      This causes consternation to people who have no real concept of truth, who treat words as feelz and tools for manipulation.

  44. In the 1930s, informed opinion in the US was that there were only two possible outcomes: we would go Communist, or we would go Fascist.

    Didn’t work out that way.

    1. At the time, before Stalin decreed “Right wing means disagrees with ME,” it was conceded they were pretty much the same thing

  45. So, I recently said I had ordered a plague doctor mask to wear at Wal-mart since they were the only place I regularly went to that bothered people about it. And someone said they wanted to know how it went. I wore it there for the first time today.

    There were 2 hitches, and I’ll cover those first before I get to the good news:

    ========================================

    1) I didn’t think matters through before I made the purchase or I would have ordered a mask specifically designed to fit over glasses. They kept the bottom of the mask from fitting properly. Also, in addition to the mask’s inherit effects on my peripheral vision it kept shoving my glasses around, all of which my vision was pretty badly impaired.

    And as for the steampunk hat I ordered to go with the mask – because of course I got one to go with the mask, don’t be ridiculous – I had to wear it loosely enough that it kept wobbling around. If I tried to press it down firmly onto my head it would press the mask down hard onto my glasses, which would press them onto my nose rather painfully.

    The one upside is that having the lower part of the mask away from my face meant plenty of airflow; breathing was never going to be a problem.

    2) There was one negative reaction to the mask that I wasn’t expecting. As I was checking out a little boy – not far past the toddler stage, if at all – stared at the mask and freaked out. He was too far away for me to hear what he was saying so I don’t know if he was just bewildered or actually scared (hopefully the former). I gave him what I hoped he’d take as a friendly wave seconds before the family left the building but I don’t know if it helped.

    Got to admit, I wasn’t happy about that. I was prepared to annoy some adults, but it hadn’t occurred to me that I might terrify a child.

    ========================================

    But aside from those two things I’d call the operation a success. I didn’t get nearly as much attention as I expected (as far as I could tell with the impaired vision, anyway), but of the half-a-dozen-or-so reactions I got that went beyond briefly staring they were all positive except for the one from the boy. One guy chuckled as he passed. A couple of people said they liked the mask. One got out her phone and took a picture. And two separate people said it was “the best one I’ve seen so far,” suggesting that I might not be the only subversive in the area.

    One more thing. My mother is one of those people who buys into the Covid panic and won’t listen when I try to explain things to her. A few weeks ago she even shrieked hysterically at me for refusing to wear a mask everywhere indoors. Tomorrow we’re making an out-of-town trip together to a bigger Wal-mart. I don’t know how she’s going to react when we get there and I pull out the plague doctor mask, but it should be… interesting.

    Wish me luck.

    1. On the kid– besides that he’s probably already freaking otu about masks in general– “maybe past toddler” is still in the zone when meeting a bald man with a beard for the first time can send them into screaming hysterics.

      One of my uncles use to play Santa for a bunch of stuff, found that out the hard way, explained it when my daughter at about 18 months was utterly FLIPPING.
      “It makes sense, after all– my head is on upside down. Hair here, chin here.”

    2. I love steampunk. I already have a be-decked hat. I may need to order the mask (and I don’t wear glasses, so that makes things a bit easier…)

      1. Look out for the masks that have the goggles protruding into the interior. I got one. Even with my glasses off, it’s not comfortable because of the pressure on my face. Yes, I wore it at Day Job. Yes, the kids spooked, especially the new ones. Yes, the other teachers loved it!

  46. God really seems to be hammering in the message “Trust Not in the Arm of Flesh” this year. I have never been good at letting go and trusting Him. But I think 2020 is determined to break my stubbornness and pride.
    What helps me is that I am not alone in all of this. I have my family. So remember, Mrs. Hoyt, you have Dan and your sons, and lots of friends, and all of the weirdos on this blog.

  47. The Finns have a word: sisu. Grit. Stoic determination.

    Good word for these times.

    I’m not good at sisu. I’m Irish-American. I tend more towards the fiery fiery rage – towards ríastrad– which is then typically shoved down into a small dark place where it festers. And then pops at the worst moments.

    I confess to in some small horrid way hoping that I can go warp-spasm (Kinsella) on these fools. I see the joy of the fight and the lamentations of the women, and I want that dark joy. I want to dance with the Mórrigan, as foolish as that may be.

    But I am not called to that – YHWH tells me that I am here to care for my family, that that is the noblest and highest calling I have. I am also told to stand (EPH 6). I am not told to attack – I am told to stand. I am not allowed to retreat – I am told to stand. As such, even with the World and the Prince of Darkness Himself (greetings and defiance!) opposing me, I will not bow.

    YHWH is for me. Who can be against me?

    I will not worry over what happens in the larger world – it is not my teaghlach nó mo chlann. If they come for my kids, my wife , my parents? The roses will grow better.

    But until that day comes, I will proclaim the Gospel, I will speak Truth to the best of my abilities, and I will pray.

    I will also sharpen my axe and train with my bullet propelling devices. And if people are willing to set of CoC’s such as set out by Henry and Adams, or revive the Sons of Liberty – as is my fervent hope – then we will prepare even more, and ready our muskets.

    As held by many people – NOUS DEFIONS.

        1. Kinsella (the abridged version of Táin Bó Cuailnge):

          “The first warp-spasm seized Cúchulainn, and made him into a monstrous thing, hideous and shapeless, unheard of. His shanks and his joints, every knuckle and angle and organ from head to foot, shook like a tree in the flood or a reed in the stream. His body made a furious twist inside his skin, so that his feet and shins switched to the rear and his heels and calves switched to the front… On his head the temple-sinews stretched to the nape of his neck, each mighty, immense, measureless knob as big as the head of a month-old child… he sucked one eye so deep into his head that a wild crane couldn’t probe it onto his cheek out of the depths of his skull; the other eye fell out along his cheek. His mouth weirdly distorted: his cheek peeled back from his jaws until the gullet appeared, his lungs and his liver flapped in his mouth and throat, his lower jaw struck the upper a lion-killing blow, and fiery flakes large as a ram’s fleece reached his mouth from his throat… The hair of his head twisted like the tangle of a red thornbush stuck in a gap; if a royal apple tree with all its kingly fruit were shaken above him, scarce an apple would reach the ground but each would be spiked on a bristle of his hair as it stood up on his scalp with rage.”

          As for the connexion between the Gaels of Hibernia and those of Galicia – linguistically, I don’t know. The Book of Invasions says that the Sons of Mil (Milesians/Mílidh Easpáinne/Miles Hispaniae?) came to Éire from Iberia – It could be where the Black Irish came from, not just the wreckage of the Armada.

          What would be odd contstructions, grammar wise? I looked on the wiki, but all it gave was a list of words of celtic extraction, and they seem to be a lot closer to Welsh than Irish… Different leg of the Language Trousers

        1. The Irish legends say they came from Galicia and they still play bagpipes up there. Perhaps Wee Free Irish can get us the connection between Gael, Gal, and Galicia.

          DNA testing seems to say that’d here’s something in the legends, or alternatively since Spain and Portugal were the main markets for the west of Ireland until Elizabeth I ish it could be something simpler.

          1. My people come from Galicia, so….
            note that a lot of the “home language” has weird gaelic constructions. or so I’m told. Don’t know Gaelic, but some friends do.
            And yes, they play bagpipes.
            Galicia was the top third/quarter of Portugal and equivalent region of Spain. If you look up videos, all those people look like me. Even — sigh — same body type.

            1. I went through Galicia when I was at Uni. I was living in Toulouse and we decided to go to Compostela. Didn’t walk it so I don’t have my cockle shell. It would remind you of Ireland: green, wet, Atlantic coast weather.

              I have a great … great uncle who stayed in Portugal. He was a British officer seconded to the Portuguese army in the Peninsula War. From what we know he decided being a major in Portugal was better than being a half pay lieutenant in Ireland, became a Catholic, married a Portuguese girl and stayed. We think they settled in Coimbra.

              1. Ah, not my region. Otherwise I’d claim you as cousin.
                My great great whatever grand supposedly married ggg grandmother and settled down to be a gardener and have a passel of kiddies.
                He was responsible (we think) for grandma’s (maternal) ivory skin, enamel blue eyes and absolutely STRAIGHT pitch black hair.
                Also mom’s features have a bit of the Scandinavian, which I think came via that side. Green and blue eyes are the norm in that family.
                I take almost exclusively after dad’s side….

    1. Uh. Heinlein’s Sisu in Citizen of the Galaxy.
      Blood in the steel. Steel in the blood. You are Sisu.
      ….. Maybe that’s the ship of Hoyt’s Huns. Sisu. I like that.

    1. They also forgot to turn off YouTube comments during streaming the first night of their convention, so of course members of all parties commented freely. They finally figured it out, later in the night.

  48. absolutely. These 82 year old been there done that set of guts. these raised a family of 11 some of whom are sane and some of whom are bordering on libertarian craziness and some who refuse to vote because they feel it’s useless — those guts. Your posts have helped keep mine in tact, so here you are, Sarah Hoyt. You are not alone. Whatever happens in November – if it goes against us – there will be a remnant left to seed the field with good seed and to keep the faith and to carry on in the face of whatever comes our way. Thank you.

    On Wed, Aug 19, 2020 at 12:20 PM According To Hoyt wrote:

    > accordingtohoyt posted: ” There was something grandma said when you said > “My heart is broken.” “Make your guts into a new heart, and go on.” Humans > are …. complex. We’re not precisely one thing or the other. For > instance, even when I wrote eight hours a day, every day, I wr” >

  49. If it makes you feel any better, Utah has been doing vote-by-mail for several cycles, and has the bugs pretty much ironed out. (Of course, Utah’s scarcely a battleground state; the last time Utah’s presidential vote went to a Democrat was 1964.)

  50. “If ye are prepared ye shall not fear” (Doctrine & Covenants 38:30)
    It’s a founding belief of Mormons, (though we prefer Latter Day Saints), that hard work and preparation, coupled with emotional and spiritual strengthening, is enough to get you through anything.
    So many people I know right now are stressed out and worried, unsure of the future. Others have become apathetic or pessimistic, convinced that the slide into the abyss is inevitable.
    But, along with that first scripture, we also teach to “Stand ye in holy places, and be not moved.”
    But, what is a “Holy Place”? We don’t mean to live in a church or synagogue, nor to spend every waking moment at shrines or burial grounds.
    Make where you are a holy place. Make your homes, (and work, if you can) into holy places. Try to avoid conflict. Try to be more understanding and forgiving. Prayer or meditation goes a long way toward making it a Holy Place.
    Good music. Good friends. Loving family. Whatever brings peace to your heart/soul.
    When the world is insane, we can face it without fear if our home is a refuge. That means that sometimes the media has to be left in its own place, whether that is outside the home, or just restricted to a room/rooms.
    Find/make your place of peace. That is one thing you can control. That is one thing you can work on.
    Some of us have done it for so long, we’ve learned to carry those places with us.

    1. And also do not forget the example of Captain Moroni, and be prepared as well to fight to protect your life, your liberty, your homes, and your family.

  51. I’m not usually much of a ray of sunshine myself, so I figured I should try to say something in an attempt to add a little hope to the internet myself instead of drawing on it from others.

    I’m more than a little freaked out myself – we seem to have as-called countrymen who hate us and want to see us as slaves or dead. They’re not going away either. Perhaps it is a little too much to expect that our enemies evaporate without a fight? And yet, they *are* self-destructing, more so than I think any of us could have reasonably expected. Their evil is apparent to anyone who isn’t willfully ignoring it. And strangely enough, their evil seems to be hindering them. Their impotence at everything but lying and social manipulation is incredible (“CHOP” being too inept to actually build the guillotine they were all lazily talking about.)

    These people might steal the election. Maybe they’ll bring the republic down. I don’t want a civil war, and I tend to think it could go badly for us. I’M certainly not well versed in fieldcraft or fighting, and some family might be on the other end of the field shooting at me. Maybe they will end up bringing about some dark age. It won’t last forever though. Given how corrosive these people’s ideology is, it might not even last two generations.

    The continued existence of our country is contingent. On if enough of America isn’t stupid or evil enough to give the communists a chance of cheating their way into power. On if there actually is a theshhold where we will rebel. On if people finally decide to go down fighting when they have nothing left to lose. On whether we can organize a rebellion if necessary. On the actions and character of millions of people that I can’t control. Many people/nations throughout history rescued themselves, either for a long time or a period from far more dire circumstances and far more dangerous enemies than the modern American communists.

    There are things that aren’t contingent: About as close as I get to a religious appeal to eternity: There will be other places and times in human history where men manage to establish freedom and justice. If America gets it wrong and dies, there will be other people who eventually end up getting it right. The people who are too rotten to keep civilization don’t make the men who were decent enough to build it in the first place impossible. The Earth is unintuitively old, and has, on a human timescale, effectively infinite time left. Civilization can rise and fall and rise and fall a few ten million times before the sun burns out.

    Even if humanity were somehow capable of destroying itself once and for all, the universe is (according to our models) possibly literally infinite in extent. Someone somewhere, sometime is going to get things right. The villainy of evil people does not blacken the character of good people, no matter how much they’d like to spread the guilt around. It just makes things hard, fatal even, temporally, when they win. Somewhere, sometime, they’re going to lose. It is not impossible that it might be here and soon. (And if we are so blessed that they self-immolate without a fight, that would be miraculous and wonderful.)

  52. Mrs. Hoyt. I have read a couple of your books long ago and my wife follows your columns. She discusses them with me now and then. She sent me this one and I read it – though I did not read any of the comments. Here are a few pieces of my guts to, perhaps, help you, as a fellow American, tie up and regenerate yours…

    It is far easier to fight a visible enemy than an invisible one. Americans have been sleeping, lulled by silliness and evil masquerading as goodness in a world of “moral relativism”.

    It is fortunate if the first strike of the enemy does not kill you as you are often wakened from lethargy or overconfidence and has the dual benefit of often causing even careless people to reconsider their tactics and strategy. Some may need a few more punches before they finally remember they come from people, if perhaps a generation or three back, who had a spine and and the will to fight – the short bloody ones and the long game apparently but seldom truly non-bloody ones. I thank God that we have been given so much opportunity to let people see/ begin to see the true nature of the socialist/communist beast’s mindset, and for enemies who are youthful idiots who admit much more of the truth as to their intentions than what their masters would like to see. Frogs tend to jump out of already boiling water if they can.

    One of the reasons, I believe, that many socialists and communists, who might otherwise be incredible opponents, do not do so well because they are conditioned by their society that it is best to give in, to lose if you will. There is often no incentive for defending a governmental or economic anything unless you are fighting for something you believe in and which clearly works in the long run to provide opportunity, security, and incentive to be patriotic and work and strive.. Unless, of course, you are one of the few who get to have the benefits of the system and get to live in relative or extraordinary luxury. Then you fight with everything you have, lest you are treated by the awakening populace as what you truly are: a parasitic leech and destroyed along with everything “you built” or your “legacy”. Check out Former President Obama for example.

    Hope saves. Not in a pie in the sky sense or even just in a religious sense; because it, coupled with a strong desire to live and have a shot at life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for yourself (to a somewhat greater extent) when you are younger) and for your family, posterity, your country, your God, good people you see around you, heroes that went before you, and a country which, at its best, provides that as no other nation in the history of the world ever has when you get older (if wisdom has distilled within you a bit from knowledge and experience).

    So, in all friendship, fellow American Sarah, buck up, dispel the darkness of soul that lights upon us when we are intelligent and perceptive to the darkness of the world around us, kick the looming despair out on it’s will sapping backside and just be too stubborn, hardheaded and will full not to fight for something good, intelligently and wholeheartedly, until you die fighting for that which you love and recognize as good, or you beat the enemy of our republic (as well as the enemy of our soul) down into the dust and spit on their rotted corpse – literal, figurative or proverbial.

    Then, when we have won for a while, we teach our children and their children to recognize the enemy, look out for others and engage decency in life as a practice to be striven for daily until some other mask of the same old threat whispers it’s candy coated filthy lies to deceive our posterity, some will be ready and recognize it for what it is – and both sound the warning, and lie in wait, for it, gauging its strengths and weaknesses, until they bleed to beat it down again.

    Let’s leave them a system, a nation, a belief system in decency which maximizes their ability to do that.

    And, from what I see in your article, you are probably too cussed and stubborn to go quietly into the good night. And having defeate4d inner demons for so long, on the whole, you have been strengthened to deal with outer ones. There are more of us like that out here than you think.

  53. I too bob up and down in the interstices between hope and despair. But He keeps telling me that is isn’t going to turn out the way I fear. So it is going to be, if not a happy surprise, at least a not-devastating “Oh!” moment.

  54. “And don’t tell me we can rebel and fight. Guys, we can’t go to the store without masks.”

    ^^^^ This

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