The Lies of Diversity

I was going to write about something else, and had the whole damn article pretty well in my head, but you know the annoying suggested articles that your browser shows you, unless you have time to tinker with it and make it go away?

Well, one of them was something like “The excuses white men give not to get involved in diversity.”

I was already grumpy. For…. various reasons.

Starting with, for example, the fact that I had to pass up on a set of Daz poses because the insane designers made much of how for the first time ever, these poses were for couples of all compositions. A) they were lying. There were no alien and human couples, or cat and human couples. B) Seriously, dude, dudette or whatever side of the bed you woke up on that makes you think you’re a typing squirrel or something, all the poses can be used for characters of both sexes, which means you can totally use “love poses” for gay couples. Sure, sometimes you have to adjust the hip tilt a little, but most of the time you actually don’t. So, this bizarre set of poses is a) a way to virtue signal. b) a way to sell 1/3 the poses for an outrageous amount. One doesn’t know whether to be horrified at your duplicity or compliment you on your capitalistic instincts, and I’ll decide on it as soon as I’m done throwing up.

Perhaps it’s Pride month. No, I don’t actually have anything against gay people. I have something in fact for people being allowed to be who they are. But the problem is we aren’t. Have you ever tried throwing a conservative pride month, in which we study the achievements of conservatives through history and long-closeted conservatives take to the street to show how conservative they are and proclaim to all and sundry “Yep, I’m a conservative.” (I’d suggest a Libertarian Pride month, but getting Libertarians to agree on a month would be near impossible, and probably mean we end up celebrating in Sectoberember.) Right now, right at this moment, being a conservative is far more of a liability to your business, your life, your career, your education and your prosperity than being gay has been for at least 20 years.

Or let’s try “large family pride.” or even just “family with kids pride.” Seriously, even as a family of four, with my pitiful lacking fertility, we found that it was almost impossible to find things to do with our kids while on vacation, after they were like 3 years old. Like the idea of spending time with your kids having fun was completely alien to our culture. (Hence things like an obsession with zoos, aquariums and museums and other places where our kids could be amused as well as we were. Most of the time. Thank heavens we had bookish/mostly quiet kids. So, let’s have a month in which it is ‘family’ pricing, and family amusements and family fun fairs and–

No?

You see, I have absolutely no problems with gay pride. I even understand its need, the origin being in a time when being gay ‘outloud’ was at best frowned upon, and it was actually the love that dare not speak its name. Yeah, the parades can get hell of tasteless, mostly because settled, married gay people have better things to do with their time, but you know what, I can avoid them.

However, if one isn’t allowed to celebrate being a conservative; being a family with kids; being straight; being purple with pokadots, then it’s not ‘diversity’, it’s “approved of categories, that you have to reflexively endorse.”

I will also point out, just as a side note, I never got “pride” in being what you are. If gay is something you are born (I actually believe that, or so close as makes no difference. I believe it is something you are by the time you hit puberty, and like most other mate choice things it’s fairly immovable, though it sometimes changes — the mate choice and the gay — with age and hormonal choices) why be “proud” of it? It’s like running around screaming that you have five fingers in each hand and you’re so proud. Or you were born with a head, and yah, baby, how proud you are of that skull atop your neck. Seriously? What effing sense does that make?

Of course the left keeps pushing pride and allegiance to this bullshit it calls “diversity” and which has to do with inborn, not chosen nor worked for characteristics: the color of your skin, the fact you have a vagina, who you are attracted to, your family’s origin.

I mean, I could to an extent understand if they talked about pride in things that are chosen, or at least worked for: conservatism (which until about ten years ago required a hell of a lot of courage, stubbornness and counter-cultural reasoning); or having a large family, which despite those of us who can’t is in this day and age a decision and work; or hell, being a programmer, a writer, a good gardener (I now have in my head an image of a gardener pride parade, with people waving radishes in the air. I’d watch in awe, since the weight of my gaze is enough to make plants die.) Or hey, being a cat lover. Yeah, some of that might be inborn, but the fact that you put up with the little bastages without strangling their fuzzy necks is a reason for price. (Mostly “I’m so proud I’m a sucker.)

But no, they are always “proud” of things you were born. Or accuse you of being a traitor to something you were born.

For instance, I can’t count the number of times the idiots on the left (BIRM) have accused me of being a gender traitor. And you know, it’s not for saying things like “The Muslims are right about women” which would be, if not gender treason, human treason, because the Muslims are fairly insane about women and their means of dealing with their gynophobia destroys humanity and civilization. No, it’s usually for saying whatever deviates from the word promulgated from on high by the Marxists who have taken it upon themselves to dictate how women should think.

Never having sworn allegiance to women, much less Marxist directives for women, I can’t by definition be a traitor. Not unless they’re actually receiving these directives on how to behave and what to say through their vaginas, in which case, desole, my vagina (and vulva, which is what the arrant idiots think is a vagina) is strangely mute. It doesn’t monologue, it doesn’t dialogue, and it most certainly doesn’t preach Marxism. Which is good, because wearing a gag there would be uncomfortable.

And before I leave the topic, why are these women so enthralled and amazed by the fact they have vaginas? I mean, I used to know a tiny little girl whose parents had trouble keeping her from masturbating in public. But she got over it by three, having figured out there was more to her and to life than this one organ.

Why the fascination? Are they aware they have other things going in life? Or is their poor facsimile of a life so empty that the only thing they have of interest about themselves is a vagina? Or do they think it’s an achievement to be born with one? I don’t know. I’m going to leave this topic, because these people depress me so much that I want to go out and start distributing free Thorazine.

Anyway, okay, so Pride month annoys me, because all the corporations, every single establishment and even online things feel a strong need to virtue signal how they support gays and (now) trans. The fact that those two are largely mutually exclusive hasn’t seemed to matter to them.

I don’t particularly care if someone is gay, or trans, or prefers to mate only via the eyestalk intertwining rituals of martians. Mostly because the only person whose orientation and sexual preferences I give a good goddamn about is my husband.

Oh, I take notice of friends’ orientation, but only insofar as I’m either looking out for someone to introduce to them, or I need to remember their significant other to include in party invitations, Christmas cards and the like.

I mean, I can’t be the only person for whom the idea of imagining her friends having sex brings up a massive cringe and a prolonged ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwww, right?

Oh, I have marginal interest in my sons’ orientation insofar as I would like grandkids. But honestly? If one of them had been gay he wouldn’t have been off the hook for grandkids, and nagging, so, whatever.

Other than that…. why should I care, really? Why should I affirm, celebrate, or hang up a rainbow flag? Being gay is not a political affiliation (or shouldn’t be. I mean, sure the left claims them. I have a dozen friends who testify otherwise) so why does it have a flag, even? It certainly isn’t a nationality. My normal response to the rainbow flag is “It’s a big gaudy, isn’t it?” I mean sometimes one is sorry they didn’t go with the butterfly, which was the symbol used in Germany in the seventies.

I’m okay with my friends being gay. I’m not okay with the corporations acting like assholes over this, and wanting everyone to repeat and emphasize how being gay is okay. Of course it’s okay. It happens. I mean, my religion says it’s a sin, but you know it’s not the worst sin, and I have my own sins to worry about.

I’m okay with people being black or women, too, or again purple with polkadots. (Hey, I grew up in science fiction.) Why the hell would I?

I don’t even have any issues with people of different cultures, except insofar as they try to impose their own culture on me. No, I’m not going to avoid having stuffed pigs in my work area. Not that I have any, but… I’m also not going to wear a burka. I’m not going to refrain from saying that China is an ass’o’e or that communism is a fucked up idea, and I’m going to call out the stupidity of a lot of Latin or tribal or other culture. Because I can. Because I’ve acculturated, and I see cultural advantages and preferences very clearly.

As long as their culture doesn’t interfere with a common objective or any interest, I couldn’t care less.

Apparently and for bizarre reasons this is supposed to make me racist/sexist/ and homophobic.

Two days ago, talking to younger son — who grew up in this rather ramshackle household, where the parents (us) had friends of every color and sexual orientation and profession — he said he was still puzzled why people in the media and the power of structure of publishing thought I was racist, sexist and homophobic.

I had to point out to him they don’t think any of that. Or if they do, they’re foolish beyond permission. They might have convinced themselves of this idiocy, but really, it’s a means to convince themselves they’re not horrible human beings. And it only works because they are horrible human beings.

To unpack that: you see, diversity is only an asset if it’s diversity of thought. That diversity of thought, enshrined under the first amendment of the US Constitution, is designed to make us able to think what shocks and upsets other people. And to express it too. This is often needed, because sometimes people need to hear “that’s a stupid idea.” Or “you’re not special because you have a vagina.” Or “Muslims are/aren’t right about women.” Or “The left is in control of everything and are actually stodgy conformists.”

That is an asset because humans being social apes, societies are likely to run down blind cultural alleys, and there are only two ways to deal with that: a group of internal non conformists bitch, moan, yell, and often risk ostracism in order to call attention to this stupid thing that has become widespread; or they are conquered and subjugated by a more functional society. Since the last is really horrific, the first is to be preferred. So, yay, diversity.

It might also be useful in some projects, to have someone who thinks from the outside and goes “Well, you know, if you’re writing all these leaflets in Spanish, this is a problem because not everyone in the US reads Spanish.”

This is of more importance in marketing and the social “sciences” than in, say, engineering. Yes, sure, I know the story about the single woman in the “design a seat” team who said “but that doesn’t fit women” but in fact, that wasn’t diversity. That was something any of the idiot engineers should have figured out. They were just bad engineers. It had nothing to do with their sex.

Other than that, what does diversity do?

Well, diversity of color, orientation, and all that? Does nothing. What you really need is diversity of thought.

But since the Leftist Kakistocracy has captured the institutions, including the cultural institutions, the only diversity allowed is external diversity that doesn’t challenge their power. And then when you challenge their power anyway, their only excuse is that you must oppose all that external diversity they like to proclaim.

What? You don’t want a group composed of the largest publishing house in your field to control awards? Well, that can only be because you’re privileged white males, afraid of women, gay people, black people and people of other national origins. Even if it’s patently obvious you can’t be any of those.

It’s the lies people in power make up to protect their power. That’s what the phony baloney “diversity” is all about as well as all the justifications for why white males are now and forever privileged while everyone else is downtrodden.

The phony “diversity” allows them to co-opt foot soldiers to defend keeping them in power and to shut you up with claims you’re a bigot, even while they squat, like obscene poisonous frogs on the structures of power.

Fortunately you can tell it’s no longer work, because they have become way louder and more shrill, demanding you participate in their diversity cosplay.

You know those “excuses” white males (And for the purposes of this post, we are all — or at least the left would consider us all — white males. Even those of us who tan, are female etc.) use not to “participate” in diversity? I didn’t read the article. But I can give you what the biggest should be “Go f*ck yourself and die, for claiming I’m tainted or owe you something due to an accident of birth. And get out of my face, you useless shitbird. I’m working. If I stop working, you stop eating. Maybe not right away, but very quickly. Because we’re the ones doing things that ultimately keep society working.”

We are Atlas, lifting the world aloft.

They should think twice before causing us to shrug.

313 thoughts on “The Lies of Diversity

  1. My characters are massively diverse, and tend to be so much more interesting than the…things that I am getting in most novels these days.

    Damn sure that they’re not whiny little babies that cry about doing their best.

    And, I’m annoyed like hell about that kind of characterization. Worse, all of these “diverse” characters are pretty much stock characters with maybe a few after-market add-ons attached. Not even good add-ons or attached very well.

    No nuance. No charm. Not even the joy of the purity of an asshole being an asshole because they find it funny.

    1. And the stereotypes. I bought a book a few years ago about…welll, Man finding the Singularity and becoming God, and of course the sympathetic, open-minded, social character was a Muslim male scientist. Of course. That was “edgy,” and “fighting stereotypes,” and “fighting Islamophobia in the wake of 9/11.”
      I am so freaking tired of “edgy.”

        1. Our son’s cat used to knock stuff off the dining room table for the dog. I lost some good knitting needles that way.

          1. Used to? We’ve got two year old adolescent cats who have been doing this since they figured out how to get up onto tables and into bookcases and desks. Getting the dog into trouble is a tag team sport. We’ve had them since they were 5 weeks old, just about a year now.

          2. This is a nearly universal cat behavior. I often wonder if it had any evolutionary value. I have had cats that when not getting what they wanted (usually a meal) would start knocking knick knacks and tchotchkes off of every surface they can find. After knocking each item off they then look right at you as if to say “Well, do I get what I want or must I continue?”.
            I also had a cat that was in a symbiotic relationship with a dog. The cat wanted to sleep in a cabinet (cave simulation I suspect). It would climb in the cabinet and start kicking the dry goods therein out. This included cereals and boxes of various treats (mostly ginger snaps and Nilla wafers). The dog (a Doberman Pinscher) would then stuff her nose in the boxes and chow dowm. I lost more of my after school snacks that way.

            1. Weirdly, unless it is cat treats or catnip, neither of the household cats have ever been inclined to knock stuff off. Granted, one cat is too near sighted, too fat (although he is slimming down), and too old/lazy to be interested in climbing up on stuff unless the aforementioned treats/catnip are the target, and the other one, while vertically inclined (she lives on top of the fridge, most of the time) has never been interested. Ours are weird cats, I suppose…

              1. I do not have anything breakable that is light enough for the cats to knock off or over. Haven’t since we were first adopted about 3 months into our marriage. Well okay. I tried the first 18 months. Didn’t last. Plus the culprit wasn’t one of the first 3 cats we adopted. Nope, it was the tiny one we hand raised to terror size. She is also the first one, not the last, to learn how to open cabinets, drawers, and any door with a lever (VS turn knob). Nothing was safe. OTOH we had 10 years to learn how to child proof cat prevention disaster the house, years before our son was born and exploring.

          1. I have to be careful not to shock the sweet little college girls I game with because of the Imaginary Little Old Lady effect.

            Makes you wonder if they really never met a Nanny Ogg…..

            1. Right? My grandmother has a filthier mind than any of the rest of us (and not of the amusing variety–or at least, it’s only amusing to her). To the point that my parents–who are taking care of her in her last years–have had to have A Chat with her more than once about what is and is not allowed as regards viewing material in their home. (And not just the sex stuff either–she has a penchant for ultra-violent stuff that the rest of us are going “Yeah, no, not in this house please.”)

              1. I vaguely remember a story about a nursing home in Florida where the staff was complaining about the residents extremely active sex lives. Should I love to be the out old, I too rather hope to be able to traumatize the staff in such a fashion.

                1. Heh. Though given that a LOT of nursing home employees trend very young, I suppose I oughtn’t be shocked that *they* were shocked.

                  Of course, sadly, abuse is rife in those places–it’s hard to determine, when a lot of the residents are mentally compromised, where consent is given vs. where it is not (and that I would be shocked about too, though not terribly surprised either). But where both parties are willing and able…hey, that’s between them, and God 😀

    1. As Karl continued to monologue about how he believed the world worked, Atlas’s eyes glazed over. His jaws became slack, and he began to drool so much that Karl began to fear his Wellies weren’t high enough to keep him dry.

      From the Mythological Grecian Adventures of Karl Marx

  2. “The excuse white men give to not be involved in diversity”, well, that’s because The Gatekeepers of All That is Racist will not allow white men to involve themselves. It’s not us providing the excuses why we aren’t involved, it’s them providing excuses for why we can’t be involved. Of course it’s all BS, the last thing the left wants is for minorities to adopt the same tools that have allowed western civilization to flourish. Anybody else remember when Trump highlighted what he’d done for minorities at a SOTU address and the Democrats sat silently stewing in rage? Even if I was a horrible evil racist person, self-interest would dictate to me that I want every person capable of working to be working, regardless of any other status. The more people working, the more taxes government gets and the less my burden becomes. (Ideally anyway, we all know the government will always find new, exciting, and stupid ways to spend money).

    As for why they are fascinated by their genitals and the products released from same? Arrested development. Very young children go through stages where they are fascinated by their genitals and their poop, to the point that after they do their business they want other people to come see it. They’ve never grown up, their mentality has never evolved beyond that level of thinking or they’ve regressed to that level of thinking, without being able to review their psychological history it’s really hard to tell which.

    We also see their arrested development in their seeming inability to be logical, the magical thinking that allows them with no shame to equate words with violence, and stopping there because this is already way to long.

    1. Their “diversity” mandates conformity of thought. Their Oceania has 4 credos:

      Ignorance is Strength
      War is Peace
      Freedom is Slavery
      Conformity is Diversity

      And they are fully committed to imposing them using the full power of the Federal Government and all of the institutions that they have corrupted and now wear like skins during their long march.

      1. Their Diversity is strangely Uniform, and their Inclusiveness is astonishingly Exclusive.

          1. I’ve run into people claiming to be Bigots Against Bigotry… might’ve been a troll but with progs it’s hard to tell the trolls from the true believers. 😮

      2. Of course the problem becomes that those institutions have become corrupt and they lose power and credibility. I don’t think they’ve thought through the long term impact of corrupting the rule of law and what that will mean in a generation when that contempt becomes not just one particular party abusing the system, but embedded in the general culture. The number of crimes your typical criminal commits vs the number he’s caught for is shockingly small. The perfect example is how many times do you speed and how many times have you gotten a ticket?

  3. How about this “catch-22?” If you say you are diverse (not racists) and show family members, you are just proclaiming your “white fragility.” If you are white you are racist– no take backs.

    Woot … they sound like a bunch of toddlers and teenagers trying to play the “I can hit you, but you can’t hit me” game.

  4. Daz poses? I had to duck duck go it, guess I get out too much.

    How ’bout liver spot pride?

    Consulting a dermatologist; she commented on my wisdom spot. I, of course, politely and respectfully, queried her as to who was the condescending, gushing blabbermouthed ignoramus that coined such a description of a ##&@#! liver spot?

    She allowed it was her that originated it.

    I hence lauded her acumen, command of the language, beauty, medical training and her delightful turn of phrase.

    Remember, true wisdom is never ever disagree with a lady standing close, with a scalpel in hand.

  5. No. I refuse to be involved in “diversity,” where such things are used merely as a bludgeon to enforce ideological compliance, and my mere presence would be taken as an admission of guilt. I refuse to bow to the whims of petty tyrants who haven’t the ability to explain how said “diversity” is worth spit. I refuse to give attention to the blathering of idiots whose ideas can only reduce my intelligence by giving credence to their obvious weak-minded propaganda.

    I give not the slightest f*ck for those whose feelings are hurt by my refusal to cooperate in a delusional exercise designed to increase division and distrust, and does nothing to decrease human suffering in the slightest. Feelings don’t feed the hungry, nor do they shelter the homeless.

    The strength of humanity is our wits, our morals, and our ability to work together. “Diversity” only divides. It can never create unity of purpose, save the nihilistic sort that seeks to destroy. In dividing us, we are distracted from the things that really matter. Like working together to get the job done, teaching our children, and keeping a wary eye on what our political representatives are up to (almost invariably, nothing good).

      1. I think you’re right. The whole kit and kaboodle is entropic in its visible effects, all the ones I’ve seen. I wonder how many of them have ever looked at a penny, and wondered what that bloody “E pluribus unum” bit meant? Or the melting pot. Might as well speculate one whether or not they’d actually read the Federalist Papers for all that, to boot. Or the Constitution.

        1. If they read any of it and understood it, then they are master criminals. But I suspect a lot of the fools are following a pied piper because it “feelz” good for a moment and aren’t smart enough to see what the consequences are for the future.

          1. Well, the social dopamine hit is definitely a thing. So far. The other bit is, counter culture is something that seems to *always* come back around. The pushback against the woke is growing, even in rap. And as our host has said, time and again, what can’t go on, won’t.

            The Evil party lives in a mental world where they think they’ll always be in power. To be fair, they’ve cheated very hard to make that dream come true. It can’t last though. Whether they end up losing power to the Stupid party, or the radicals within their own depose them, or the country falls apart when it can’t sustain the welfare state on top of the grift, they will fall.

            Its up to us to carry that weight. Liberty will always be coveted by those who think they will have more if they take it from others. It will need defending, long after we are dead. While we live, our task is not merely to stand against those who would destroy it, but to live by example and teach those who will listen. That’s heavy stuff, right there.

            1. They have their notion of The Perfect World, and since they are the only ones smart enough to bring it about and maintain it, naturally their first priority has to be locking themselves into absolute power forever.

              1. There’s another aspect.

                The “Woke” are the Special People who believe/know some Great Vision that the Mundanes don’t believe/know.

                If the “Woke” gain an apparent victory where the Mundanes apparently accept part of the Great Vision, the “Woke” have to move the Goal Posts so that they can continue the “struggle” toward the Great Vision as well as keeping their Status as the Superior Ones that see the Great Vision that the Mundanes don’t see.

                IE If the Mundanes accept the Great Vision, their Status is threatened.

                1. The Holiness Spiral will continue forever, along with continuous purges of those who don’t keep up with the latest craziness, until we reach Pol Pot….But only if the normies allow it, which doesn’t look likely in the heavily armed USA…

                  1. Which is why they are so anxious to ban guns and disarm all of the law abiding citizens. Given that they simultaneously want to “defund the police” it is clear their indoctrination of the military is intended so that they can use the military to disarm the citizenry. After all, yet another Democratic Party member of Congressman called the greatest threat to America are “the millions of Trump voters who don’t accept the 2020 election as legitimate”. Never mind that these same Democrats just spent four years claiming that the 2016 election was not legitimate.

                2. Yeah, the stupid Woke religion is a form of “luxury belief system”. The whole POINT is that they have to believe something different than the “common” person, because otherwise how would could they be superior?

                  On the more basic level of casual Democrat voters who just think the Democrats are the “good” people, it’s the same thing except a bit muted. One of the reasons it’s hard for many Democrats to even think about voting for Republicans is that they’ve internalized “Republicans are evil” and the cognitive dissonance of rejecting their previous way of thinking – and identity – is not supportable.

              2. It really makes me wonder, in the entire history of humanity, do they truly believe that they are enlightened ones destined to bring about utopia? Are they not familiar with the saying “The road to hell is paved with good intentions”? Or even “Two wrongs don’t make a right”?

                Personally, I’m all for human advancement and improving society. All they have to do is convince me that they’ll be making things better and not use methods that would give Hitler would approve of using. To this point, everything they want to do will lead to disaster on an epic scale.

          2. “e pluribus unum” a mystery? Ouch! Had Latin been offered in HS, even a one-semester overview, I’d likely have taken it. And even all these years later, even with having “picked up” some (never actually studied Latin… yeah, like No. 44, but not as knowledgeable.) I can see how even that little would have made comprehension of so much that much easier. I *still* have D’oh! moments regarding such – and it frightens me that I appear to be more aware of that than so many around me. (The number of times I ‘got’ the Caribou Coffee trivia question of the day by working the meaning through Latin is… decidedly non-zero. And that’s NOT just the Really Obvious Stuff where the question itself broadcasts the answer. It amuses the Caribou folks that the more ‘obscure’ something is, the more likely I am to get it. What shocks them is if I get a ‘pop culture’ question right. Shocks me, too.)

            1. It’s surprising how much Latin you can pick up if you read law much… the barristers of Old England likely named things in Latin to keep the plebes from thinking they didn’t need lawyers to understand the law.

              Similarly, you can pick up a surprising amount of Greek when learning chemistry, as least by the Asimov method.

              1. “the barristers of Old England likely named things in Latin to keep the plebes from thinking they didn’t need lawyers to understand the law.”

                Well, that and the whole “common language” thing.

              2. Nah, the nice thing about Latin is you can skip the linguistic drift.

                Otherwise you get entirely the wrong idea when someone is smoking a faggot on a gay old day, and have to hope someone will translate “I enjoyed the cigarette and the day.”

              3. I suspect I picked most Latin (and some other things) from both Chemistry and Astronomy. The interest in Electicity/Electrics and Electronics likely added a few things.

        2. > Might as well speculate one whether or not they’d actually read the Federalist Papers for all that, to boot. Or the Constitution.

          We got told *about* the Constitution – briefly – in junior high. The Federalist Papers weren’t mentioned at all.

          1. My second-grader grandson was holding forth on his history lessons recently and I asked if those lessons included anything about the founding of our country. He screwed up his face for a minute and then said, “Well, we learned that James Madison was the father of the Constitution.”

            I nearly fell out of my chair. Did you ever so much as hear James Madison’s name in second grade? I certainly didn’t.

            Very thankful that the grandkids are going to public school in Texas – and not in Austin.

        3. My experience with most of them is that haven’t read much of anything. No room in their curated, exam cramming lives to read anything other than textbooks that pre digest the information and tell them what good think is this week. They’re to be pitied.

          1. While I did learn some basic stuff at school, where I *really* learned was at home. Pa simply left his old High School & Tech. School texts out where they could be found and read. One Summer, I pretty much taught myself basic chemistry – not perfectly, but nothing was destroyed, so consider it a success. Another Summer, basic electronics and a non-trivial amount of radio. Then (NTSC) TV for fun.

            The thing that was missing, was GOOD texts on various parts of mathematics. For so much, math is *the* limiting factor. And it is so terribly neglected. “In my adult life I never used…” And for *radio* I recall skipping over ‘cut and try’ antenna installs (simple dipoles) by using ‘cut and compute’ – make the antenna ‘too long’ but a KNOWN length. Find actual resonance. Compute *local* constant. Adjust size for desired resonance. DONE. Look, *ox* manage this! It not hard!

            1. People stopped doing the “in my adult life I never used” stuff on me.

              I can almost always come up with a way that stuff was used, if they’re not total bubble-babies. A lot of the time, they were doing stuff the hard way and just didn’t realize that they KNEW the math to do it, or they did the math but didn’t connect it to the math they’d been taught.

            2. > GOOD texts

              Some of the older books assumed you wanted to *use* the subject for something, as opposed to rote memorization to move up to the next academic level. They therefore tried to teach the process to you, as opposed to just being an overview and problem sets, with the “teaching” part doled out in tiny verbal drabs by an instructor.

              The good books pretty much went away in the 1950s. The academic system didn’t like texts that didn’t require academics to interpret and explain.

      2. I gather the new ideal is a “salad bowl,” because the melting pot is a metaphor for creating mindless uniformity, while a salad creates a harmonious whole displaying the unique attributes of each ingredient.
        Of course, the purpose of a salad is to be eaten…

  6. I have a sprinkling of characters in both the Luna City chronicles and a scattering in the historicals who are gay, or might possibly be gay – but I have tried to make them into fully-dimensional characters who tend to be rather private about their affections. They aren’t there for the sake of being OMG!eleventy!!!!!GAY.
    It used to be called the love that dared not speak its’ name … and now it won’t stop screeching it for a single second …

    1. Most of the flamingly gay men of my acquaintance in and around the goth community have adopted the “genderqueer” label now merely being gay is old hat and nobody cares. Because if it weren’t their orientation or “gender performance” or whatever, it would be something else, because “freaking the mundanes” is the whole point.

  7. The while “let’s stuff people into categories” mindset produces some weird mental gymnastics. I got accused of hypocrisy and doublethink by leftists because I believe that A) Letting in large numbers of unvetted illegals from Muslims countries is really REALLY stupid idea and B) Uighurs do not deserve to be genocided by the evil ChiComs just for being Muslims, like there is an inheritance contradiction in believing those two things. Because all Muslims fit in the same box and if you’re not enthusiastically celebrating them you must hate them and want all of them to die WTF?

        1. I have no idea how, and I’m kinda too lazy to tinker and figure it out, but my annoyance is starting to outweigh my laziness.

          1. How To depends on what you’re using, but searching for “disable autocorrect YourSoftware” should bring up something pertinent.

  8. “Wisdom spot?”

    “No, honey, that’s where my skin died and turned brown. Will you please ask the doctor to come in, and get me some coffee, two creams?”

      1. Hoping to hear that the smoker had a tragic accident shortly thereafter, such as falling down the stairs three or four times. I’ve met the type.

            1. Wing: ”Have you ever heard the phrase, Living well is the best revenge?”

              Miles: “Where I come from, someone’s head in a bag is generally considered the best revenge.”

                1. Well, to be fair, the head in the bag Miles referred to had been forcibly removed from the neck of its owner *first* and over his shocked protests. (If I remember right, along the lines of “But you’re Betan, you can’t–!” If you threaten her child, oh yes she can and will…)

                  1. I think some of them have their head lodged so far up their own posterior that it would be impossible to achieve that depth without removal of said head from their previous attachment point. Given their startling lack of intellect, I’m not sure that removal will cause much change in the functional level of their brains.

                    1. It does lead one to wonder how they can yell so loudly with their heads lodged in such a confined space…
                      ———————————
                      Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!!

                2. I tried to post a reply to this TWICE, and WPDE ate it both times. It was from the scene in ‘Captain Vorpatril’s Alliance’ where Tej mentions his Aunt Cordelia’s infamous Winterfair gift to her husband, Vordarian’s head in a bag, and Ivan replies, “Only the one!”

                  It would seem that WPDE found something in Lois Bujold’s specific wording objectionable, so I can’t post the actual quote.

                  The other quote was:

                  Count Vordarian: “What? You’re a Betan! You can’t do—“

  9. If I ever had any intention of supervising, leading, or managing others, I would try to do a good job of it.

    I could not do a good job of supervising a black person doing mathematical work, if I decided to echo the morons saying that mathematics is not for blacks. Okay, I’m not a competent supervisor anyway, and I’m not really equipped to supervise mathematical work even if I was, so refraining from making that statement is not sufficient for me.

    In conclusion, these people are either so innumerate that they do not consider whether successful persuasion would hurt black mathematicians, or they do not care what damage they do to the application of mathematics.

    They may simply be active stupid, or they may have zero stake in mathematics, and perhaps should shut the hell up.

      1. I can tell that compliance will not buy me security.

        Killing the messy fellows, possibly.

        If they had any interest (or ability) in providing security for compliance, they would have stopped pushing.

        They will not stop pushing, they are unable to provide security, and they will not behave themselves without being forced.

        We have generously refrained from killing them so far, but I am not persuaded that we must continue to refrain.

          1. No, it is simply that the crazy coming out of the walls is so disturbing that my stuff falls under the new noise threshold, and looks reasonable in comparison.

            It is only /looking/ reasonable /in comparison/.

            When the ordinary course of criminal justice looks inadequate, the guy who goes out of his way to point out that hunter gatherers could not afford prisons, calorically, begins to look like he may have been paying attention to something important. Even if in truth he is insane, and the situation is well short of having those necessities.

            Yes, extraordinary measures may be appropriate in extraordinary circumstances, but it is also true that a core element of conservatism still holds. The things our predecessors knew for bad ideas may still be bad ideas.

            When everyone around you, and your dog, are out of their minds, you should be cautious about concluding which of the ideas you previously thought mad are sane enough to act on in the current circumstances.

            We need especially stringent tests of ideas precisely when we are faced with difficult problems, and do not see our usual methods as acceptable.

              1. I’m pretty sure things will settle down. Even considering my theory of unforeseeability, I almost think that we can prove that they must.

                Without the increased random noise from giving a megaphone to the extremes of crazy, my own level of crazy should return to being measurable above the noise floor/static signal.

                1. Agreed, they must settle down at some point. Between now and then will be dangerous times, as the leftists seem to be categorically unable to stop the escalation. For one, the mob won’t let them do so, at least not easily. For another they don’t just want power, they *need* it in order to cover up the things they’ve already done, and will continue to do, in order to both maintain the power they have, and get more. At any cost/by any means necessary means that even by today’s jaded standards they dare not reveal their hands.

                2. I always wished someone could have given Cassandra a hug and a cup of coffee with a bit of fresh-baked bread. “It is not in our hands, dear. Let’s work on what we can.”

                  Consider this a virtual hug, and if you’re ever in the neighborhood for the ora de cafe, the door is open.

                  The U.S. has been unraveling for a looooooong time. You just happened to have an eye for the weave.

              1. My own sanity is a personal quest, much sought after and rarely (if ever) fully accomplished.

                Other people being crazy, I can do little about. Definitely, I can find the madness of others frightening or disturbing.

                If I’m saner than the world, it is a partial success. Means I may have avoided some of the traps that snared others. But I’m chasing /sanity/, not relative sanity.

                Pushing my own limits on avoiding madness is hard even when other people are not scaring me out of my mind. Furthermore, I have to trust others to some degree, if for no other reason than things I cannot do on my own, or information I cannot collect and analyze on my own. So that is also a difficulty that depends on others being somewhat sane.

              2. Also, judging sane by the standards of others is a really bad idea. So, caring about the negatives of “I’m crazier than everyone else here” is not wise.

                Though, I’ve been to a sci fi convention twice. First time, I noticed that for once I was inside the variation of strange. Liked that a little. Second time, years later, I do not recall noticing, was fairly busy.

                1. Please consider calling on the holy spirit, the spirit of love and truth for help. The universe is sane, but broken (see thermodynamics) but people are partly supernatural. Even if you think it all nonsense, ask anyway. He really does love you.

  10. They only want (group) pride so they get to define, and excommunicate, what that group is.

    Which is how they can claim a murderous fat dude in a dress is a real woman, but I — mother of six– am not, because my politics are not acceptable to them.

    1. If we are playing very broad Us and Them, let’s go with the need people have for an identity. They have healthy, sane, reality-based options: Child of God: Imago Deii; mother, sister, brother, wife, builder, maker, teacher, neighbor, and citizen.

      OR… All those identities can be declared evil. Santa Racisma is not worshipped thereby so out they go.

      You know what an easy toxic identity is? An oppositional one. It is very dramatic.

      If you want to help a kid (particularly a aspie one) dealing with trans pressure, be very matter-of-fact, get them into cosplay, and encourage a positive identity. One based on the art they make; their family, and their community.

    2. You’re only *for* something. And made a lifetime commitment to it, which makes you a schmuck.

      They only recognize commitment *against*, and their stances are flexible, which makes them Enlightened.

      1. This works really well with how bleepin’ uncomfortable they are with everything from “Truth, Justice and the American way” all the way to American flags, in America, on Memorial day.

  11. I just had to delete a comment on FB because someone had to mention that they liked the thing I was sharing but not the “puppy” I shared it from. (Yes, it was from your page.)

    It’s like—all these years, and you still are harping on that? And you think I tolerate name-calling of any kind? I’m pretty sure they didn’t note that I had you as a FB friend, but dear Ghu, don’t people think that other folk online might have read the same information that they have and still don’t agree with them? (No, of course not. I’m a “good” person in their eyes, which means that I MUST be liberal-left plus whatever.)

    1. “I’m a “good” person in their eyes, which means that I MUST be liberal-left”

      This is how they view themselves. I’m torn by being stunned by and laugh at the levels of delusion:

          1. You must be diverse in exactly the correct way or you aren’t really diverse.
            I like Catburt’s formulation: “The longer you work here, diverse it gets.”

  12. I AM being diverse. I’m disagreeing with you.

    But no, they want to be the Thought Police. And when you tell them that, they just look at you funny.

  13. You hit the nail on the head. Diversity is just the way they’re using to maintain their power. they don’t actually do anything about it themselves or they’d be giving up their jobs to a “deserving” person. They use it as a stick to beat their enemies. Notice how the BLM nonsense was turned up to 11 right around the time they discovered that Trump was actually quite popular with blacks, especially black men. If they don’t get an overwhelming portion of the black vote, they’re done. They fixed the turnout problem in their own, photocopied, way.

    I also think that they get a thrill out of playing the guilty white person card on themselves. It’s just masochism and the shame is the kink.

    1. “I also think that they get a thrill out of playing the guilty white person card on themselves. It’s just masochism and the shame is the kink.”

      If that’s what they’re into, there’s a lot of high-quality professional domimatrixes that would be very happy to take their money. As long as they left the rest of us alone. Otherwise, couldn’t these idiots just fap off in a corner quietly and not leave their disturbing psychosis all over the place for us to clean up?

          1. They tend to be very rich or at least the offspring of rich families. Costs a lot of money to be a socialist, those resentment studies degrees don’t come cheap. Of course, sometimes there just isn’t enough money in the world.

      1. Ah, but not leaving us alone is the point. One wonders how long it’s going to be before the perpetual victim crowd is given something they can truly lament over. (To quote a long deceased relative: “Stop crying or I’ll really give you something to cry about!” Didn’t like said person much, but I understand the attitude.)

      2. Yeah, was gonna say…”Dude. You think most of these people HAVE money? That’s part of their problem.”

        And the ones that DO have money get off on the acquisition of power, and actually have no shame to be kinky about. They’re just using the appearance thereof to make the ones who do have that particular kink kowtow to them. (I can feel sorry–while also wanting to smack them upside the head with a studded cluebat–for the ones who truly buy into the racial-guilt nonsense. The others–the politicians, the actors, and so on–make me straight up sick.)

        1. Perhaps I have an availability bias since I work on Wall St and am planted in the Acela Corridor, but I find that all this racialist BS is a rich person thing not a poor person thing.

          I’m not talking about the average antifa storm trooper, though there does tend to be money in the family. I’m talking about all the media, institutions, corporate leaders, you know the elite. they already have the power but they seem to have this need to abase themselves. It’s only rich white people who attack rich white people and have “race cards” under their pronoun block on their email signature. They act as I think bottoms would act and seem to revel in the humiliation.

          Kinks are kinks, Le vice anglais is flagellation and the recipients are almost always the rich and powerful. I think it’s a way to deal with the stress of being in charge and a knowledge of our inadequacy, but then most psychology is bunk. They’d be better turning to God since accepting ones essential inadequacy is dealt with in a healthy manner there.

          I don’t pretend to understand it. I’ve had several women explain the Story of O to me as about control by the woman, but I’ve never been able to wrap my head around it, Not my kind of thing. Folks are weird.

  14. “Perhaps it’s Pride month.”

    Month? Not anymore. . Here in Canada we have Pride Season. From now until August, apparently. Shiny Pony decreed it. Frickin’ rainbow flags forever.

    I have no problem with teh Gays, we’re all good there. Be all you can be, boys n’ girls. But Pride Season? Government mandated? That I have a problem with.

    “The excuses white men give not to get involved in diversity.”

    I only have one of those. It is: “GET OFF MY LAWN.” The mandatory thing again. I’m not a fan. 😡

    1. Pride Season? Where do you get your license? What are the Limits?

      I didn’t realize that there were so many in Canada that you needed to cull them.

      Down here they aren’t endangered anymore but there really aren’t that many real ones. Lots of Larpers of course mostly teenagers. But not enough to need culling.

    2. I have a problem with the gay: It is tragic. Unable to form a sexual pair-bond with a member of your own species? That is bloody awful.

      Let’s celebrate being born with Down’s syndrome, or conjoined twins, or blind? Celebrate? That is sick-making.

      If you’ve been handed a hard row to hoe by that [Rude word] Fortune, you have my sympathies, and I’ll help you get on, if I can. Don’t let anyone sell you the lie that just because you’re a freak of nature, a virtuous life is beyond you. Sure: the odds are you’ll fall on your sword. So what? Let no pinheaded puling mediocrity tell you that means you have to stay down. Get up. Keep going.

      If I can do it, you can do it.

  15. involved in diversity

    This is a tell – not “increase diversity using this measure” or “encourage diversity through reasoned discourse” or “work for diversity through unpublicized personal action”; nope, it’s “publicly declare allegiance, perform public penance, and denounce and persecute unbelievers”.

  16. Considering the recent ruling of the “Supreme Court” on the Selective Service System still only choosing men to be drafted, I had some discussion with the fairer sex and they were unable to defend the apparent “female”-pass they receive despite the fact that women don’t need men for anything.

  17. “I mean, I can’t be the only person for whom the idea of imagining her friends having sex brings up a massive cringe and a prolonged ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwww, right?”

    *Fistbump of solidarity* I’m okay with fictional characters doing it. Real People? I Do Not Want To Know.

    And yeah. On my really grumpy bad days I’ve contemplated intersecting one of those parades with a bullhorn and, “Hey everybody! Want to hear about all the sex I’m NOT having, because I have better things to do?”

    …A foolish fantasy, yes, but sometimes tempting.

    1. The only friends I wish to know anything about their sexual preferences are those poor deluded fools who hope I can introduce them to someone.

      Since these are generally folks with severely busted pickers (they ARE asking me for reasons, after all), I vet potential someones closely. But aside from all the general sanity and associating with sane questions, it’s helpful to have some idea about what floats someone’s boat. No point in introducing someone who prefers bodybuilders to runners, after all!

      So far my success and failure numbers both stand at zero. Most people fail location, religion, or sanity.

      1. Ed Dutton has a vid on “how to find a mate who is sane, loyal, and agreeable” as determined by typically-inherited traits — and the needful technique boiled down to “Go to church.”

    2. My sentiments exactly!

      And finally, finally I have discovered one good thing about getting old. None of my friends want to talk about their sex lives any more, because we’re all ancient and wrinkly and can barely remember what the fuss was all about.

          1. I suspect this is why the indie-published ‘sweet’ romances are actually a really huge seller on Amazon (and presumably other places). Most of us want the love story, not the sex scenes :p

    3. I had a comic moment in one of my books, where a honeymoon couple who had just discovered the joys of married sex sort of imagined an elderly and respectable couple of their acquaintance doing the same … a moderate degree of hilarity ensued.

      1. “Will we still be doing this when we’re their age??”

        “Certainly not. Everyone knows your grandparents never had sex!”

    4. So people have sex? I never got the big deal about others, including one’s own parents, having sex was any big deal. You’re here, aren’t you? Unless you happen to be Adam or Eve… well…

      Granted, that does NOT mean I wish to see it or hear about it any great detail. It really all boils down to, unless we are ‘sharing a bed’ as it were, what you do ain’t my business and what I do ain’t yours.

      1. You’re better off if your parents didn’t make it a big deal, yes.

        (Picture parents that give no sex education whatsoever while making it clear they have it and only one of them likes it. It’ll put you off completely.)

        1. My folks didn’t CARE that Monty Python (on PBS) showed nude women. (One of those quirks that BBC/Brit. regs allowed nudity so long as there was no allusion to sex… and there wasn’t.) Grandma freaked out about it though. I thin the folks had the right idea – no big means.. no big deal. Grandma? Well, NOW since it was Verboten… why?

          1. Sort of like pictures of naked women were educational in National Geographic, but pornography if they were in Hustler.

            1. Welll…to bring up the old joke, there’s a difference between ‘naked’ and ‘nekkid.’ Naked = no clothes on (Nat Geo), while nekkid = no clothes on and Up To Something (Hustler) 😀

  18. Here is a great example of how schools are being used to indoctrinate children in this nonsense-via the NY Post (full piece follows):

    Teacher at posh NJ prep school quits over critical race theory
    Dana Kennedy, Tamar Lapin
    New York Post
    June 8, 2021

    An English teacher has resigned from a top New Jersey prep school that is using critical race theory to create a “hostile culture of conformity and fear” — causing white and male students to believe they are “oppressors,” she said.

    Dana Stangel-Plowe accused the Dwight-Englewood School in Bergen County of forcing students and faculty to embrace a single set of beliefs, choking off free-speech in the process.

    “The school’s ideology requires students to see themselves not as individuals, but as representatives of a group, forcing them to adopt the status of privilege or victimhood,” Stangel-Plowe wrote in her letter to school brass.

    “As a result, students arrive in my classroom accepting this theory as fact: People born with less melanin in their skin are oppressors, and people born with more melanin in their skin are oppressed. Men are oppressors, women are oppressed, and so on,” she continued.

    “This is the dominant and divisive ideology that is guiding our adolescent students.”

    A graduate of Cornell University and a published poet, Stangel-Plowe has taught English to high school students at Dwight-Englewood since 2014.

    Her resignation letter and materials from the school were published on the website for the Foundation Against Intolerance & Racism (FAIR), which was founded by private school parent Bion Bartning earlier this year to combat critical race theory teachings in school.

    Stangel-Plowe alleged that on two occasions in 2017 and 2018 the Head of School “told the entire faculty that he would fire us all if he could so that he could replace us all with people of color.”

    In 2019, the educator said she expressed concern about “negative experiences among hostile and doctrinaire colleagues” — but said her complaints fell on death ears.

    As a result of the school’s “anti-racist” teachings, she said her students have become obsessed with power structures and group identity.

    “This fixation has stunted their ability to observe and engage with the full fabric of human experience in our literature,” Stangel-Plowe wrote in her letter.

    Students “have become rigid and closed-minded, unable or unwilling to consider alternative perspectives.”

    She added: “In our school, the opportunity to hear competing ideas is practically non-existent.”

    “I reject D-E’s essentialist, racialist thinking about myself, my colleagues, and my students,” Stangel-Plowe wrote. “D-E claims that we teach students how to think, not what to think. But sadly, that is just no longer true.”

    Joe Algrant, the principal of Dwight-Englewood’s Upper School, told The Post that he could not comment on personnel matters.

    “In this case all I can say is that Ms. Stangel-Plowe notified us several months ago that she would not be returning next school year,” he said in an e-mail.

      1. Not that it compares to the unbearable burden of being born melanin-abundant or with a female reproductive system, but:

  19. If I were to express my opinions about homosexuality. I would likely be labeled a homophobe, Very likely even here. It is not because I fear or hate gays. It is because I believe that homosexual *conduct* is immoral. I do not want to be expected to approve, support, normalize, or celebrate it. I also do not want to be forced by law, custom, threat of persecution or ostracism, or weight of public or private opinion to do any of those.

  20. *Fistbump of solidarity* I’m okay with fictional characters doing it. Real People? I Do Not Want To Know.


    Even fictional characters, okay … but fade details out. I do not need, nor do I want … details. Don’t need details, just don’t. If I want porn, I’ll buy porn, be it visual, or by words. I. Do. Not. Want. Porn.

    There are reading categories and various authors I avoid like the plague, for this reason. The authors writing and the story lines aren’t good enough to keep me around reading.

    There is one series, and one author, that I have gotten sucked into regardless of the above criteria. Better believe I skip pages when these details occur. Sometimes the scene needs narrating and I have to go back to pickup the detail missed (Heather Graham).

    1. Agreed. All my romances are “sweet and clean” not because I’m a prude but because I’m easily bored. As far as I can tell, about 95% of fictional sex scenes involve taking 5-10 pages to say, “Tab A was inserted into Slot B and it was the most amazing, transcendent thing ever.” And I’m thinking, “Yeah, yeah, can we please get on with the story?”

      1. That, and “have you ever actually gotten straw/leaves/pine needles/whatever-you’re-rolling-in IN YOUR UNDERWEAR??”

        1. Reminds me…

          One of the characters in the on-line game “The Secret World” notes at one point that she’s bathed in diamonds… and it’s a real pain getting them out of the places that they can get into.

          1. Heyyyy! I play that game too! Granted, it’s been a while since I logged in, but…greetings, fellow Secret Worlder!

            And wasn’t that the Templar contact who said that? She’s a hoot, in a somewhat horrifying, train-wreck kind of way 😀

            1. Christine Geary, the Illuminati contact (/cheer).

              The Templar contact is a man.

              And the Dragon contact…

              Over the top excessiveness like bathing in diamonds is really an Illuminati thing.

              I think the last time I logged in was shortly after Africa was added.

              1. Right, sorry, got the Templars and the Illuminati mixed up there. Silly me!

                I’m pretty sure the Illuminati in TSW are the frat-boys of the Secret World. No, strike that, I am *definitely* sure, and they’re mostly doing it to shock the Templars, because it’s fun, and because the Templars complain so noisily about it.

                And the Dragon are…just weird…

              2. And I’m still in…Transylvania. Ongoing problem with me and MMOs, I rarely if ever see what passes for “endgame” content, in any of them 😀

                1. Some of my favorite missions involved content added later to Transylvania in the original version of the game.

                  Tokyo, the next hub, is pretty freaky, with some weird mechanics that they had to add in as an alternate level-up system (since the original game was purely skill and gear-based, and they had to include some speed bumps for the players who had maxed out their characters by then). The creepiest levels in the game are all in Tokyo.

                  1. I *miss* the original game mechanics. I really *liked* them–they were a bit odd, but they were interesting and unique to all other MMOs. I was really irked when they changed it in Legends to be more like all the other games out there. I mean, it’s still different, overall, but I really, *really* enjoyed working through a deck and getting the cool outfit, and then changing up the deck to something different. They only kept some of that, alas. Still, I enjoy the overall different-ness of the game even now.

                    1. While I am sympathetic, I’m actually glad to hear you are annoyed with them– because I totally freaking LOVED Secret World but after we got to the school area my husband basically staged an intervention…. I was waking up with nightmares pretty much constantly. -.-

                      I R wimp.
                      (Poor guy is very good at putting up with me, though– last week I was jumping at shadows trying to go to bed, not because I am scared of the dark [though I am] or didn’t know where stuff was, but because I read some CreepyPasta TWO WEEKS EARLIER that didn’t even make sense but I was having half-asleep terror fits.)

                    2. Oh, the school is horrifying. It’s the number one reason why I *don’t* have an Illuminati character–I can’t stand what they did with that school! Talk about a horror show O.O I also suspect I would find it even MORE horrifying if I had kids! Although I will give the writers credit for taking the whole “magical school” trope and going “Yeah, this is how horrifying it probably would ACTUALLY be.”

                      I also refuse to believe the game canon that Kingsmouth is beyond saving. That’s the one aspect of horror I’ve always hated–most of it is so dang bleak.

                      Sorry to hear about the nightmares! Word of advice: DO NOT EVER PLAY ALIEN: ISOLATION. Just. Don’t. I’ve pretty much never had a nightmare in my life–and that game didn’t give them to me, but that’s probably because I haven’t made it past about 5 minutes after the xenomorph shows up (which is a couple of hours into the game–but first play attempt I didn’t KNOW that, so that was stressful too!)

                    3. Much of the Orochi stuff in Transylvania makes the school look benign.

                      In contrast, some of the Orochi stuff in Tokyo looks downright silly (like the VR Pac-Man game), at least before everything went bad.

                    4. I started up SWL for the first time in a long while last night, and realized I couldn’t remember how the AP and SP system worked. The wheel was rather nice and simple, in comparison, even if the decks were more complicated.

                      They also took away the tertiary weapons like the rocket launcher, though iirc most of those were largely considered underwhelming by the players. And the devs also never put the Tokyo dungeons back into the game. I never ran them myself, but iirc there was some interesting lore down there.

                      Sadly, it appears that the switch to SWL didn’t do much for the game. South Africa was new story content. But that was a few years ago, and there’s been nothing since.

                    5. yeah, sadly they don’t seem terribly interested in adding new content. I used to see emails regularly, but it’s been a few years since any came through my inbox. I hope the game doesn’t die, but it’s not thriving–which is a pity, as it really IS a unique, and well written game. I think part of the problem is the game studio is throwing all its budget into its Conan stuff (but not the MMO–Age of Conan has been dead far longer than TSW).

                      But…so long as they don’t pull an a-hole move like NCSoft did back when they pulled the plug on City of Heroes–and got really nasty towards fans who tried to buy it (and for a good price, too). (At least NCSoft seems to have decided to leave the revelation a few years ago that City of Heroes DID survive on private servers, and those servers then being thrown open to the public, alone and not go after anyone. I suspect they took a pretty bad PR hit after their behavior when they killed the original game.) So as long as SWL’s studio doesn’t do THAT, and just leaves the game alone, I suspect it will plug along with its few loyal players well enough, sigh.

                    6. They throw money at Conan Exiles because it makes money. In fact, I have a vague recollection that they literally started the game because they were running out of money, and needed to figure out a way to get their budget back into the black. And then someone noted that there were a lot of “open-world survival” games, most of which were a half-baked buggy mess, and those games were making a decent amount of money by selling “early access”, and that someone said, “What if we made one that was actually professional quality, and based on the Conan IP that we have rights to?”

                      So they made an open-world survival game, linked it up with the Conan IP, and sold copies of it while it was still in Early Access. And Funcom was saved.

                      Can’t really blame ’em for spending more money on it.

                      TSW has had three (four, if Draugen counts) spin-off games, so there’s some interest in the setting. But it’s apparently never done well enough with the public. And, based on the group who responded to this sub-thread, maybe that’s not such a big surprise? Of the handful of people who responded to this sub-thread, apparently only one person stuck with it long enough to find what was hidden in Transylvania (let alone reach Tokyo). People seem to have been interested in the setting, but not interested enough to stick with it.

                    7. Conan Exiles *is* fun, I will grant that. (Though still not quite as much fun as ARK: Survival Evolved, but only because, you know, DINOSAURS.)

                    8. Otters.

                      Just like normal otters, but with vampire teeth.

                      OTTERS. They even beat Jerboa for cute!

                      (We have our server with S+ or SS inventory mods, and the Stargate mod. There’s also a tombstone mod that will let you recover your loot bag if you die.)

                    9. Oooh. I use S+ but haven’t heard of the Stargate mod. I’ll have to check that one out! 😀

                      And yes the otters are SO RIDICULOUSLY CUTE. Not to mention, they make dealing with extreme heat and cold a breeze! No need for furs or heat mitigation, lol.

                2. I never made it out of Egypt. But it is kinda cool that there are other players (or former players) hanging out here.

                  1. Yeah! THat’s not one I often encounter other players from 😀

                    Egypt is fun. I especially love the Last Train to Cairo storyline, because it is so very hilarious. Nassir and Said need to have their own buddy show. The overenthusiastic resistance fighter, and the extremely jaded and urbane mummy…what’s not to love? One thing I *do* like a lot about Secret World Legends is you can replay questlines as often as you like!

                    1. I might have to try that again, The Last Train to Cairo is kinda why I quit. Not sure if it was build or equipment but I found it to be really frustrating. (It was a few years ago so honestly don’t remember the build) and something else came out that I was more interested in playing. I have lots of free time currently so been thinking about Secret World and maybe checking out ESO again.

                      I did really enjoy the variety of the missions and how well thought out some of them were.

                    2. Last Train frustrated the hell out of me when I first played it, prior to the conversion of the game to Legends. Since…well, that was one good thing. It is doable solo now! And, of course, still worth doing as many missions as you can so you can get the cool Indiana Jones outfit 😀

                      I…have tried to like ESO, but I just can’t get into it. Currently, I’m taking advantage of Blizzard realizing that nostalgia is A Thing and am happily playing classic Burning Crusade on World of Warcraft (and even checking out the current game–since you have to have an active sub to play Classic) for the first time in a decade or more.

                      Lord of the Rings Online, however, remains the one MMO I have a more or less permanent subscription to, because I love it.

                    3. Did they bring back the Burning Crusade as it was then, or just have the story line with the now current spells and such?

                    4. Exactly as it was then, albeit with its own new crop of launch-day issues, lol. Though it’s run quite smoothly for the last several days 😀

                      I’d forgotten how tough WoW used to be, both in terms of surviving combat (Add! Add! Run away! :p) and questing. No easy-peasy quest markers like they have now, heh. (Unless, of course, you get an addon. So far, I’ve stuck with the old standby of Titan Panel. They haven’t updated auctioneer, and I’m not much liking a far-more-complicated alternative I’m trying out.)

                    5. LOTRO will probably be the game that survives the heat death of the universe. MMOs have fans. LOTRO has family. *chuckle* I always seem to come back to it.

                    6. LOTRO is indeed very, very awesome.

                      I do very much hope that they intend to open up Harad and so on eventually. I think they’re gonna have to…it certainly presents a lot of story possibilities now that they’ve finished with Mordor and Sauron is gone, game-wise!

                    7. The woke had 4 fits over the Haradrim in the movies — they’ll blow a gasket.

                    8. Eh, I’m not sure most of them pay any attention. For one thing, the Haradrim have been in the game since at least Rohan! 😀 And of course they are a major foe once you hit Gondor and Ithilien. Also the oliphaunts. Which–since my primary toon, a hobbit burglar, long since outleveled most of the game up to Mordor (before I knew about the tortoise stone, which is a pocket item you can use to halt xp gain)–are kind of hilarious. Because one tiny little hobbit burg can kill the oliphaunts dead by herself! …By repeatedly stabbing their ankles. 😀 (Ahhh, the silliness of gameplay vs. story segregation.)

                    9. Egypt dragged on and on for me in the original game. Last Train has it’s annoyances because parts of it are action things, and the game never does that very well (despite its pretensions). Egypt overall worked better for me in Legends, possibly in part because the Last Train and Djinn stories were incorporated directly into the progression instead of being added in post-launch issues (which also meant that the djinn’s level was tuned waaaay down). The maze to reach the djinn is still too long, though.

                      Things start getting interesting with the post-launch Transylvania content. Venice is a yawn-fest, imo. And then you reach Tokyo, which is all kinds of messed up

                      And that’s without mentioning the parking garage…

                      *shudder*

                      “We’re all made of stars.”

                      Finish with that, and it’s off to South Africa, to get a closer look at The Morninglight. And that’s as far as the devs got, afaik.

                    10. I hate when I run out of reply space. I’ve been playing the pre-release Baldur’s Gate 3 lately and Original Sin 2. Single player but lots of fun. I like the companions in DOS a lot better, the ones in BG3. . .ugh. I have yet to find an effective party combo that doesn’t require listening to unceasing insults between party members, oh, and one of your party members is a sociopath who wants to drink your blood. Another is a sociopath that hates everybody. Then there’s the likely sociopath who has lots of secrets but mostly just comes off as secretive and annoying. Another wants to eat any cool magic items you get. Other than that, it’s a lot of fun.

                      Going back to SW is sounding more tempting, I think I cleaned out all the missions in Egypt already and just need to finish train, if my character hasn’t been deleted.

                    11. How is BG3? I have probably sunk 300+ hours into BG1 and BG2 over the years

                    12. What’s in place is pretty good. The game is beautiful and there is a nice learning curve with understanding combat mechanics and abilities. Stuff that kicked my butt on my first run I breeze through now at the same level. Once they finish polishing it and adding the rest of the content, I think it’s going to be an amazing game.

                      Companions are a potential headache, so I’m hoping they introduce more when the game comes out. With the currently available ones I think you’d end up having to juggle between being good and bad to avoid losing any of them. Only major bug I’ve run into was mobs being able to shoot through a roof while you can’t hit them. Probably not going to play again until a new class is released.

                      Also, the parasite mechanic is going to be interesting to see how it plays out. The more you use it, the more power it gives you, but not sure if that means it gets closer to possessing you and turning you into a mind flayer or if it’s the opposite and not cooperating with it will result in it eating your body.

                      Biggest pet peeve other than the annoying companions, is that you basically need someone with high charisma in the party to handle the majority of the dialogue stat checks. There are also stat checks that are miserable to fail that you have to do with your own character in camp, which for me limited the progression of the companion stories.

                    13. BG3 isn’t finished yet, but what I have seen of it is very promising indeed. I love BG1 and BG2, and this bids to be a good addition, if not, in my opinion, really a direct sequel to the other two. For one thing, you’re not the Bhaalspawn. It remains to be seen if they’ll tie it in to the other two–I would be very disappointed if, for example, we don’t at least get a cameo from Minsc and Boo–but it’s gorgeous and the storyline seems intriguing! And the companions seem to be a wonderful collection of dysfunctional dumpster fires, which is required in a Baldur’s Gate game, and always entertaining.

                    14. This is the first BG game I’ve played, so other than watching videos I wasn’t sure what to expect. But the videos looked interesting enough to get me to pick it up.

                      I am excited to see the full game. What they’ve already done is amazing and I can’t wait to see the rest of it. Just hoping that they add some companions that are a bit less dysfunctional dumpster fires.

                    15. Hopefully at least one or two–though the age-old tradition of Bioware games (which, okay, Bioware isn’t doing BG3, but the studio doing it knows what their audience expects 😀 ) is very much the ‘dysfunctional dumpster fires that you never the less really like.”

                      Still. They’d better bring Minsc in at some point, because he is just too much fun. Even if it isn’t as a companion.

                    16. Awesome. I’ll look next time I play and see if there’s an option to mute them unless you’re having a conversation with them.

                      I didn’t mind them so much the first 20 or so hours of play, it was around hour 60 that it started to get really bad.

                    17. Heh. I also have Baldur’s Gate 3, but after seeing videos of how much there is yet to finish…I’m gonna wait, I think, for the official release date. I really hate getting immersed into a story, and then not being able to finish it!

                      Although yes, I have gotten far enough to meet the elven vampire-sociopath, and he is both alarming and hilarious. Nice change from the more usual angsty-woe-is-me vampire, at least insofar as entertainment value goes. (My character rolled enough to turn the tables on him when he tried the ambush-thing at meeting her, and his alarmed reaction to having a knife at his throat was well worth it.)

                    18. Nah, it was, “Add! CC it!”

                      IIRC, Burning Crusade was the last expansion where crowd control was a thing. I mean, the abilities still exist. But modern WoW doesn’t require the tank waiting to pull until after the crowd control targets have been marked.

                    19. Yeahhh, but I’m an introverted weirdo who only joins groups when it’s absolutely necessary, despite the fact that I do like MMOs…just not, you know, the multiplayer part of it, most of the time 😀

                      So that entails a lot of running away from ordinary mobs at low levels, lol. Which I had quite forgotten about, because that’s not really needed even in Lord of the Rings Online, these days. (Though thankfully, they added an item that STOPS you earning XP there, if you like. Since even crafting and festival quests can cause you to outlevel stuff quickly, it’s very nice.)

                    20. Think there’s more than one of us around, yeah. Oddly enough, I miss the old school crafting system from FFXIV 1.0. The detail they put into it, well, it could have been *awesome.* Then they easy-buttoned it. Boo. *chuckle*

        2. There is a Pennsic legend involving the romantic couple that decided to enjoy one another in the woods, and found a nice patch of poison ivy to do it in. (They did not know it was poison ivy).
          Anothe legend involves the couple who went into the woods to enjoy one another just before the Woods Battle, and rolled onto the pathway in front of a marching unit.

        1. Maybe… but I bet sex videos sell better than sports videos.

          Back in the 1980s I was on a panel discussing virtual reality. Other panelists were wittering on about real estate walk-throughs and educational stuff. My turn came, and I pointed out that depending on whose figures you used, 75 to 90 perent of all pre-recorded VHS tapes were porn, and that people were willing to pay a lot of disposable income for porn, therefore porn would be the “killer app” for virtual reality.

          I was disinvited from the panel. So much for that…

          In the end, I was wrong too. The “killer app” turned out to be computer games. Gamers will spend more than porn fans, and are used to considering hardware as expendable. But “computer games” back then didn’t take a whole lot of hardware; most limited hardware requirements to enhance market share. Hardware was *expensive* back then.

          1. Porn killed the Betamax. Porn companies didn’t want to deal with two different types of video tapes, and VHS could fit more time on a tape. Lousy video quality, but more time. Out went Beta.

            On the fan-fiction site Archive Of Our Own, badly-written porn gets 10 to 100 times as many reads and ‘kudos’ as non-porn stories, no matter how well they’re written. It can be depressing. “I could write better porn than that, but I DON’T WANT TO.”
            ———————————
            As long as sex and money exist, they will be exchanged.

            1. My understanding was that Sony controlled production of Betamax tapes pretty tightly and porn was considered unacceptable somewhere in the halls of Sony. The VHS consortium would sell production hardware to anyone, so the porn folks flocked to VHS. That combined with hardware costs (Betamax was not liscensed until late) give the edge to VHS..

          2. I think part of the reason why games won out over porn is because with VR, you expect a certain amount of active participation. But with current VR tech, porn is still just voyeurism.

            It won’t move beyond that until the experience is more than just sight and sound.

            1. Give it time, I have no doubt that within a few years there will be a host of new gadgets available to make VR porn more interactive. Various sex type machines are already in place, so I’m sure somebody will get the idea to put sensors in place to at least simulate the physical motions of the other participant or events on screen. Providing that it isn’t already being done. They already have sex robots, though I’m not sure how much is robot vs creepy mannequin and a lot of imagination. The robot story mostly caught my eye because it was written by a feminist complaining about how women were being replaced, even that was for the wut? factor.

              1. I’m sure the same thing was said about blow-up dolls. Any woman who CAN be replaced with a blow-up doll, should be. 😛

                Sex robots, though? There’s no mind there, nothing to connect with. It’s no more real than the blow-up doll. At least a prostitute is a real, living person with emotions.

                1. That might be what they want to avoid, no emotions, no judgement. I’ve been curious how Covid started what the longer term impacts are going to be on relationships and intimacy, as well as lots of other areas like the mental health of kids forced to wear masks. I don’t think we’ll get a feel for what and how much damage was done for another 20 years or how these changes are going to ripple forward.

          3. Leaving aside the content, VR porn is not very good. It has parallax and focus issues. Your analogy is closer than you know (or at least let on): It is of VHS quality, at best. This is not limited to porn. 3D video in generally is not very good. Heard it from a friend 🙂

            I _think_ the solution is technically simple, but expensive: The recording should be done with a bunch of very small cameras (e.g. a couple hundred sewn into a hat). The 3D stuff should be done on playback using all the streams to create synthetic aperture views of the area being looked at.

            1. If true, I suspect this will be one of those things that is impossible, then too expensive, then someone goes and does it…. and then there’s a new Standard.

            2. Even that likely wouldn’t be enough, though.

              As an example, using a non-porn subject –

              Back when I first saw Microsoft’s Kinect (a motion-tracking camera for the XBox), I thought, “This is pretty cool! Now someone can make an awesome lightsaber dueling game!”. As it turned out, I was half-right. The Kinect *was* pretty cool. But the technology still isn’t there for an awesome lightsaber dueling game, because there’s no actual feedback from your opponent. If you swing your lightsaber and get blocked, your hands keep moving to complete the swing. In a real duel, your opponent’s blade would stop the swing. But there’s no mechanism to stop your arm-swing in our virtual duel.

              So the awesome light-saber duel still hasn’t arrived yet.

              Virtual porn is kind of the same way. The point of VR is to make you feel like you’re really there, involved in the “action”. VR porn should make you feel like you’re really having sex with the individual(s) in the VR performance that you’re watching. But that’s just not possible with something that only includes sight and sound.

              1. It is sort of a question of “what would actually improve the experience” for most of the market.

                VR adds to a sense of immersion.

                Existing porn apparently works without that degree of immersion. But, with a recording, even including ‘touch’, one would be more immersed in what /other/ people are doing. Not simulating the results of one’s own choice of action. Increasing the verisimilitude in one way might be enough to push the experience into the uncanny valley.

                I wonder if increasing visual immersion might make a lack of emotional immersion more apparent.

                Look at Hololive. Hololive is vtuber idol agency, where non-pornographic performers used anime inspired motion animated avatars to interact with people. I just read a thread today discussing how they did better at the sense of emotional connection stuff than live video feed performers doing superficially similar types of business.

                I dunno.

                1. > ncluding ‘touch’

                  Several companies were announcing “teledildonics” hardware add-ons thirty years ago. I don’t know that any of them ever shipped, but the concept has been out there for a long time.

                  1. They did in fact ship. You can find supposed videos of them in use on YouTube if you really want to look…. or get surprised by your recommendations one fine day.

        1. I’m not, it’s just not an accurate description. I have an extremely dirty mind, I just don’t want to read a step-by-step discussion of the mechanics.

          I considered adding “not that there’s anything wrong with being a prude” but decided it was too cliche.

    2. I’ve had people tell me they need to know the details of my characters sex lives. My response is usually something along the lines of “That’s their business, not mine.”

      1. Another good reply would be: “That’s what fanfiction is for. You want it, go write it. Just don’t expect me to read it.” 😀

        (While not all fanfic is porn, an astonishing amount of it is. And most of it badly written, heh. But there are good fics out there. Usually not involving sex scenes, lol.)

  21. Per the possibly apocryphal Victorian quote, there are people whose sole motivation is to scare the horses.

    If there’s no reaction to their street antics, they’ve failed at their life’s work.

    As it not being possible for me to care less, with this horse they’ve failed miserably.

  22. The whole point of diversity is supposed to be bringing in different viewpoints and cultures to create a stronger whole. If everyone ascribes to the same tropes, then they may as well have all come from the same culture.

    1. I have been at this one since the 1990s when it was called “multiculturalism”.

      The whole point of diversity is supposed to be bringing in different viewpoints and cultures to create a stronger whole.

      That is the whole point to sell it to useful idiots like me.

      The actual point of Diversity is to provide bodies to sacrifice at the altar of Santa Racisma to bring about the New Woke / Politically Correct / SJW utopia or to maintain the boot of the Aristos on the necks of their subjects by srtting them against one another.

  23. If June is now “diversity pride month”, let’s turn July into “American Pride month”. Yes, obviously, the Glorious Fourth, but don’t stop there. Make it last the whole month. On July 1, replace the rainbow flags with the American flag. Replace the rainbow decorations with Red, White, and Blue bunting. Play that Lee Greenwood song at every opportunity (well, okay, even I could get tired of that. We need more such songs.) Et cetera. USAians unite! Take back our country!

    1. Seriously, I approve this comment. Let’s put out so many flags everywhere that a Mainstream Media Creature based in New York will come f**king unglued at the sight of them all!

      1. No doubt that the Democrats will declare that the display of all those American flags is a sign of an imminent coup attempt in order to impose “white supremacy”, and that display of the flag needs to be banned as racist and the full force of the Federal government used to catch and punish those who dared display the American flag.

        1. I mean—That’s going on now. Someone was concerned about all the flags flying on Long Island and talked about how it was proof that the people there didn’t want here and were telling her the country belonged to them, not her.

          1. Mara Gay:

            “I saw, you know, dozens and dozens of pickup trucks with expletives against Joe Biden on the back of them, Trump flags, and in some cases just dozens of American flags, which is also just disturbing, because essentially the message was clear: This is my country. This is not your country. I own this,”

    2. *chuckle* We live in the greatest country on Earth. Sure it has a few problems, but still the greatest, so much so that near everybody wants to live here, judging by immigration patterns. Every day I’m proud to be an American. Every week and month, all year round. We’ve a few special days that we might go a little wild… The fourth around here definitely qualifies. Be the very fact of being an American is awesome.

      You don’t have to be born here. You just have to *be* and American. Accept the ideas, respect the laws, and do your civic duties. That’s it. The fact that there are those *born* here that don’t do any of those three things is another matter, and a thorny one at that. You don’t have to even like America to do those things. But it certainly helps.

    3. Personally I like “The Star-Spangled Banner,” especially the seldom played third verse.

      And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
      That the hazards of war and the battle’s confusion
      A home and a country should leave us no more?
      Their blood has washed out their foul footsteps’ pollution.

    4. Play the entire “Star-Spangled Banner”, not the abridged one most people think is the National Anthem. And “Battle Hymn of the Republic”, which most people just know of as the noise the band plays at high school football games.

      “And where is that band who so vauntingly swore,
      that the havoc of war and the battle’s confusion,
      a home and a Country should leave us no more?
      Their blood has wash’d out their foul footstep’s pollution.
      No refuge could save the hireling and slave
      from the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave,
      And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
      o’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.”

      and

      “I have read a fiery Gospel writ in burnished rows of steel;
      ‘As ye deal with My contemners, so with you My grace shall deal’;
      Let the Hero, born of woman, crush the serpent with His heel,
      Since God is marching on.”

      Most of them still won’t listen to the words. If they do… “Yes, that *is* intended as a threat.”

  24. They demand diversity, scream about systemic racism, and then create a curriculum that will handicap anyone who is NOT white? Science and math are racist, test scores should not apply to anyone with dark skin…the people they claim to be trying to “protect” will be handicapped by their actions and not be able to compete in adulthood.

    Every action taken in the last hundred years has pulled the minorities back down into what the libs seem to think is “their place.” It has to be deliberate. It’s too consistent not to be.

    1. I think that’s exactly what the plan is. To be sure, I don’t think most of the people who are buying into this garbage know that–but the ones at the top? Oh yes, it’s deliberate. They see that as their path to a serf class that will keep them in power–because that’s all they care about.

      1. The self-proclaimed Elites, a subservient labor class to maintain their comforts, and some serfs who have to eat bugs.

        You have to have the untouchables because you can only push the people cooking your food, guarding your estate, or doing your heart surgery so far before their performance becomes unsatisfactory, and you have to show them your favor is the only thing that’s keeping them in their comfy lifestyle. Some will still complain about their concrete barracks and chow halls, but it’s demonstrably better than how the untouchables live…

        1. Wish there was a way to make all those idiots who think this is a GREAT idea watch the video of the Ceaucescus’ executions.

          Those concrete chow halls were, I gather, the breaking point. Or at least a major contributor thereof.

    2. I think they found out that trying to legislate racism and being overt about their goals wasn’t going to work. Instead they worked to change the culture. Before the civil rights act, the goal was to be equal in society, not to have to sit in the back of the bus, etc. Through social engineering they’ve been working to paint a picture of society as being so horrible that minorities should want to segregate themselves, making segregation voluntary instead of legislating it. Part of that is by necessity to paint the culture itself as hating minorities and being evil. It’s pretty much a twofer.

  25. It’s as clear as day what we are in the middle of. You can say it’s the 11 point subversion plan of the Frankfort School, or Bezmenov’s warning of the 4 points of ideological subversion. These lefties are going by the script and getting the desired effects.
    We have to fight hard and fast. We don’t want to pass the tipping point.

    1. It’s hard to say whether they’re getting the desired effect.

      There *IS* push-back. But it’s too early to say how effective that push-back will be.

      1. They’re NOT getting the desired effect. If they were, they wouldn’t have had to fraud in front of G-d and everyone.
        Take a deep breath. It’s going to be hell, but briefly.
        The future is a human knee to the groin of the boot wearer trying to stomp human faces!

        1. When Guatemala, etc., says there was fraud, that President Trump won … There. Was. Fraud. President Trump Won.

          What the rest of the world can’t figure out is why we aren’t in the middle of a revolution, civil war, military coup, or all three.

          Pretty sure I kind of understand why some power hungry outside idiot (i.e. China, etc.) hasn’t taken advantage, is they can’t or smart enough that as divided as we appear there is too much *history and fiction of America coming together, despite our differences no matter how acrimonious we appear to each other. Sure there would be traitors. But the rest? With as many guns in civilian hands? They have to wait until something starts here. They can’t figure out why it hasn’t. The longer it is put off (may it be forever, prayer), the longer we confuse them further.

          1. Power hungry outside idiot Russia is probably trying to take advantage, the ransomware stuff.

          2. No one else is really in a position to do so. What are they going to do – grab Hawaii? Even assuming that someone could pull off the necessary logistics, ONE carrier battle group could probably sink the entire navy of most countries. China’s got enough ships that it might take more, but that’s due to logistics and ammo (though some of their subs are potentially an issue).

            And we’ve got ten (iirc) carrier battle groups. Plus the amphibious assault ships, which can be outfitted as light carriers.

              1. Yup. They’re multi-purpose carriers, that can be outfitted for different missions. And air wings on non-US carriers are so small these days, that the amphib assault ship air wings (when outfitted with a full complement of fixed-wing craft) are only slightly smaller than those of other babies.

                That’s one of the reasons why the PLAN drive to get carriers similar to the USN’s CVNs is such a big deal. Quite literally no other carriers in the world carry anywhere near that number of aircraft. And the fact that those big carriers use catapults instead of ski jumps means that those aircraft also carry much larger payloads.

                Kinda freaky, actually.

        2. > briefly

          The US economy has proven unexpectedly resilient. But the last year has also pointed out the potential choke points for anyone who cared to pay attention.

          Too many people have no idea where their food, medicines, and electricity come from, or how vulnerable that supply chain is.

          But not matter how hard life gets for those people, their “elected representatives” will still have catered meals and limo service, as they deserve for their unflagging efforts for their constituents…

      2. We need to remember just how incompetent they are. Slow Joe has managed the miracle of making Obama look almost competent, check out what happened in the UK, make sure you don’t use an American media source.

        We need to laugh at them.

    2. Both plans are formulated by people who a) think 1984 WOULD work. b) have clue zero how real people work. c) have clue -amillion how AMERICANS work.
      Seriously?? The plan is falling apart in their hands, which is why they’re going fucking insane.
      Be not afraid.

      1. And there is no future in which they win. Either the radicals within their party throw them down, they lose power again, or the whole bloody thing collapses. Best for them would be to get us embroiled in another war- that would stave off collapse for a *little* while, but hasten it in the longer term.

        The shenanigans in the cities are already falling apart. They think the blue spread is going to make the rest of the country blue… But contact with reality is poison to the left, and all too many of their somnolent foot soldier are waking up. They aren’t (by and large) moving to places where the squishy right are, they’re going where there are jobs and decent housing… Where practical, hard working Americans aren’t going to put up with their sh*t.

        The corruption that is always a threat in positions of power has gotten a bit too visible, too. They turned the heat up too fast, and now the frogs are getting testy. Those federal judges Trump appointed aren’t going away, and the effect of that one thing will echo long through the years. As to the “sixty court cases” he “lost,” most weren’t even brought by him but by folks with limited resources and knowledge, and none I’m aware of were judged on the *merits.*

        The internal division in the party is also not slowing down, not a bit. It isn’t just the radicals vs. the establishment, its the anti-Semites vs. the lefty Jews, the BLTG rainbow vs. the Muslims, the trans vs. the TERFs, and the ever shifting landscape of cancel culture that will eventually doom them all with their own pasts. And the public self condemnations and autos da fe won’t save them from the very mobs they were once a part of.

        They are doomed. Of course they didn’t believe us when we warned them, time and again, what was coming. They were on the Right Side of History! Only time they would ever admit to being on the right of anything. But the Gods of the Copybook Headings do not care how loudly you proclaim your allegiance to the Woke gods of the marketplace. They do not listen to howling sobs of repentance and regret. And there is no appeal to mercy that moves them. They do not discriminate in the slightest.

        I would spare them that, because should such a future come to pass we *all* will suffer. Much better to open the eyes of those that can see, and put in the work necessary to right this foundering ship of state. To see a future in which this is all past, a terrible warning to those who would follow the fickle words of a dead but still murderous political ideology.

        1. Libs are like chickens in a way–cannibalistic and vicious to anyone below them in an ever shifting hierarchy. And they can’t figure out why they’re suddenly being eaten.

  26. I am who and what I am. I didn’t choose it, I can’t change it, and I don’t give a good goddamn whether you approve or not.

    But…it doesn’t define me any more than my hair having gone gray. There’s a lot more to me than who I share a bed with, and frankly just about anything else about me is more interesting.

    Besides, a gentleman doesn’t kiss and tell.

    I don’t get why people feel compelled to take it out and wave it around all the time. Whoopee ding.

    1. I think that’s the thing. How dull you must be if the only thing that matters is whether you have a thingy or not and where you put it.

    2. I hear tell that embedded programmers are literally the Hitler.

      Any advice on learning embedded programming?

      (I’m joking about the hearsay. And my sense of humor is obviously well past the ‘use by’ date. XD )

      1. Well, on the embedded programming, you can learn a lot from working with an Arduino. Every embedded software ecosystem is different, but there are habits and techniques that are common to nearly all embedded work, and the Arduino will teach them to you.

    3. The family I was born into was mostly drug addicts, alcoholics, and pathological liars.

      From around twelve to fifteen-ish, I *chose* who I wanted to be. Consciously and deliberately.

      Having no real-life role models, I picked and chose from traits from characters by Laumer, Heinlein, and E.E. Smith.

      “Dodson, Matthew, sir. One bean.”

      1. Ouch. Last year I read ‘Becoming Superman’ by Babylon 5 creator Joseph Straczynski. I’ve never heard of a worse childhood, but he grew up to do some amazing things.

        Of course, by not succumbing to your past and being a proper victim, you forfeit all virtue. You must be one of those White Supremacist Oppressors! 😦

      2. I’m in much the same boat, one side of my family had alcoholism run rampant and one of the leading causes of death was due to drunk driving or other alcohol related issues. The other side of the family put the fundamental into fundamental Christianity.

        It’s resulted in me rarely drinking and having a very low tolerance threshold for people preaching religion or anything else to me.

    4. THIS. I am baffled by this whole rush to wrap up one’s ENTIRE IDENTITY in a single and not-particularly-important trait. I don’t care who you (ie, a general ‘you’) are attracted to. I care if you are decent, kind, hardworking, and other things that are truly a choice. Not what bits you want to stick where and with whom (unless of course, the ‘whom’ is underage or unable to actually consent, in which case I care very much indeed, heh.)

      1. Anyone can be decent or kind or hardworking. That won’t make them ‘special’. They NEED to be special. They NEED to be different, to stand out.

        “That is not a person you can hide. That is a conspicuous person, designed to stick out!”

        There was a Monty Python skit where the men all belonged to a club where they used tape to hold up their noses. When the women joined the men were upset. They were no longer an exclusive club. In order to remain ‘special’ they needed to be able to exclude someone, and everyone has a nose. So they decided to ‘tape up an appendage the women didn’t have, thus descending even farther into farce.

        These people pathologically cannot allow themselves to be lumped in with everyone else. They MUST be different. They MUST be special. Skin color (or a lack thereof) was tried and has been rejected, so now they are trying some other immutable trait, since they are unable or unwilling to put effort into singling themselves out by actual achievement.

      2. It’s not particularly important to *you*, but if they’re a teenager or young adult, they’ve been indoctrinated all their lives with how critically important it is, and how their entire self should be hung on it. They’ve been taught it in school, it’s in their social media, it’s in their movies and TV shows. It’s how their world *is*, and you’re the crazy one, howling badthink from outside the palisade.

        1. Every other thing to BE has been stripped away.

          You can’t be your faith.
          You can’t be your family.
          You don’t *have* a philosophy to be.
          Your “community” is the feral pack you were placed with by age.

          ….Which is part of why sports, and “geek” is a thing. It’s a place to belong, to make yourself.

          That, of course, attracts the predators….

  27. [[Well, one of them was something like “The excuses white men give not to get involved in diversity.”]]

    How does one “get involved in diversity” in the first place? Is “Diversity” some sort of event or festival? Or are they just mangling the language again (still)?

    White men, who have been told that their opinions don’t count, that they are not allowed to speak, are supposed to “get involved” in what, precisely?

    What they don’t want to acknowledge, and yet cannot deny the truth of: it was white men (and thus far, ONLY white men) who gave up their power–the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments were proposed, passed, and ratified by white men (of a certain socio-economic class, too). Also the 19th. And the Civil Rights legislation. Black people didn’t seize their rights. Neither did women. They made their case, and the so-evil white men in power said “Hey, you’re right, let’s expand voting access and political power.” Do you think women would do that if we were in power? Take a look around what’s happening today and then answer.

    The history of America is a history of people fighting for their rights and HAVING THEM RECOGNIZED by the people in power, who have every incentive to not give up power and yet do so anyway. That is something to be celebrated, this month and every month.

    1. And framing it as ‘excuses’ avoids the possibility that I am deliberately and willfully avoiding the behavior described. I also don’t have anyone that I must justify that choice to.

      The only reason I discuss it at all is a) persuading others b) venting at the malice, stupidity and hypocrisy of it.

    2. Do you think women would do that if we were in power? Take a look around what’s happening today and then answer.

      Yes, I do.

      Because the malignant sorts that make you and I both snarl can only survive by exploiting the extras– without the existing surplus to exploit, they’re done.

      Look at who they team up with– the very kind of guy that they scream is a standard issue “white male,” or whatever group they’re hating on right now.

      Look at the actual behavior of those who want to label this or that group as being such and such a bad thing, no matter the lack of evidence– you’ll most often find that they do roughly what they accuse the innocent of doing.

      That doesn’t make having the surplus wealth a bad thing– I rather like not having to put down a pet because they get a little sick, and there’s simply nothing to treat them with, for a silly example– but it does mean that we can’t fall into the error of accepting these malicious and/or stupid folks’ characterization of people.

      Seriously, they are so wrong about men, and whites, why would we think they have any point about who they declare as a True Speaker for women, or whatever minority shows up on their hobby horse chart?

      1. Women tend to value social conformity more. I think it’s unlikely that they/we would choose to grant political power to a group not themselves until a visible tipping point had been reached that that is proper. On the other hand, women are far more likely to defect in a prisoner’s dilemma, so it’s kind of a tossup.

        I do think it would be fun to go up to a crowd of feminists and tell them that they’re only allowed to vote because men let them, though. The screeching would be EPIC.

        1. I was going to point out the tendency for women to love and trust their confident man, which is the complement side of men who love and trust their women who keep them from being over-confident– but I think it really boils down to the whole ying/yang thing.

          We’re not whole without our complement, and neither is purely itself, at their heart is a chunk of their complementing number.

    3. What they don’t want to acknowledge, and yet cannot deny the truth of: it was white men (and thus far, ONLY white men) who gave up their power–the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments were proposed, passed, and ratified by white men (of a certain socio-economic class, too).

      I think I figured out what the problem with it is– it’s the framing.

      “White Men” didn’t do that.

      PEOPLE did it, because they believed and were willing to live by those beliefs, that it was the right thing. They happened to be what the hateful these days call “white men,” but look at what they actually attack– it’s the philosophy.

      They are the inverse of … isn’t it John, the whole no Jew or Gentile, free or slave, thing?

      They hate the thought. Being able to build a strawman to attack– notice how “white” keeps growing? How you, and I, and Sarah, and most of the ladies here, are not REALLY women?– is just a tactic.

      1. I don’t think they have thought out their position (sarc). The entire movement in the west, and only in the west, toward equal rights and all that has been recognition of our common humanity. The fools have returned it to Lenin’s who/whom. When they say you must do what I say because I’m an X they acknowledge that different treatment for people who are an X is OK. Thus BLM is saying the only thing wrong with the KKK is that they’re not us. They have no moral case for condemning the KKK at all. What a bunch of idiots.

        1. The Kluckers were their predecessors, though they seem blind to that.

          They should take note of what the Democrats did to their faithful thugs when they were no longer needed.

          1. The suffragettes were a pain in the ass, vandals and arsonists, and the word “terrorists” wouldn’t be entirely inappropriate. A lot like BLM.

            If I’d been alive and voting on the subject, smashing up and burning legitimate businesses would not have encouraged me to vote in their favor.

            We spent a lot of time on “suffragettes” in junior high. Amazing how much they managed to completely avoid about the subject…

            “When I think back to all the crap I learned in high school
            it’s a wonder I can think at all…”

            1. SOME of the suffragettes were that.

              We know it wasn’t the norm over the whole thing, because they kept getting kicked out by the people who were willing to do actual work. (Kind of like how there have been bricks thrown at cops from conservative protests– and 30 seconds later, the guy who chucked it is dragged over to the cops by the people who were standing next to him.)

              The more popular support the cause got, the more bat-guano crazy and violent chicks showed up.

      2. Their framing, or mine? I suppose mine’s in response to theirs, so ultimately theirs anyway. The point being that we didn’t seize our rights. We were able to show that we had them inherently and we should create legislation specifically to protect them. Basically a continuation of the debate over whether the Bill of Rights is necessary or not, but geared specifically to the rights of women and minorities.

        Whereas their framing is that men, and specifically white men *deliberately denied* these rights to women and minorities, many times forgetting that universal MALE suffrage isn’t exactly a thing that has a huge historical backing, either. The time frame between universal male suffrage and universal suffrage is much shorter than the time between general recognition of “consent of the governed” and universal suffrage. Counting a household as a single legal entity was a thing, too.

        They also tend to always frame men as denying women the right to own property (which wasn’t true anyway. Unmarried young men often had the same restrictions as unmarried young women) or vote as a means of control, rather than anything remotely benevolent.

        1. And frankly, diving into the weeds of a pragmatic approach to a philosophy, why does voting even exist as a custom in the first place?

          The first republics and democracies can be understood as armies who built a state to share power among those who had participated in the army. Ergo, sharing power is in the service of that army being able to secure territory administered through the state. Or, at least we could understand it that way. Therefore, suffrage for people that will never serve that army would make no sense.

          If the basic entry level soldier needs to be able to supply armor in good repair, and a horse or horses, only the wealthy men can serve.

          Universal male suffrage may have a great deal to do, practically, with the relatively recent rise of cheap rifles.

          Female suffrage may also likewise with the further proliferation of firearms.

          If a demographic is largely excluded from gun ownership, it may make sense to largely exclude them from suffrage.

          In conclusion, under this theory you would have the vote, and I might not.

  28. It seems that these days being a woman who is proud of her vagina is a reactionary position that will get you denounced as a TERF. If self-identified women with penises and scrota are victims, then by definition women with vaginas must be oppressors and should feel guilty about it.

    1. It was the intersexual woman who does not, in fact, have a uterus and is willing to say that talking about the body parts she doesn’t have does not make her feel horrible who was interesting.

  29. Very very good! Having raised three boys in the 90s and 00’s I can truly affirm how difficult it is to vacation or even day trip with kids…. my religion also teaches that Homosexuality is a sin, as is sex outside of marriage. On the other hand it also tells me that it is even more important that I keep my side of the street clean and mind my own business so I agree with you about that.

    1. ^This. My religion teaches both those things are a sin as well, but that unless I am someone’s ecclesiastical leader (which I never will be, on account of not being male, heh) it’s really none of my business. 😀

  30. I refuse to associate with “diversity”on moral grounds. I despise racists, and most of this crap is explicitly racist.

  31. the LGBTxyz don’t want your acceptance … they want your approval … for behavior you may not like or agree with … and they know its not the norm so they seek the approval of normal people to convince themselves they are normal when they should just accept they are not normal and get on with their lives as best they can …

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