A Strike of Zeal

So, something to do while we wait for things to go truly crazy.

In Portugal when I was growing up, used mostly by the left, there was something called “a zeal strike”, mostly employed when you couldn’t strike, because some meany government wasn’t letting you do so, or because your customers had had about enough. (Or both.)

I believe Heinlein called it White Mutiny (insert obligatory Ree of racisssssm, even though white in this case is in the same sense as “white magic” as opposed to “black magic” none of which have anything to do with humans, since all humans are shades raging from beige to brown. It actually of course relates to light and darkness. But hey, the idiots who hate the light tend to fixate on words and imagine all words have only one meaning, and that the one they obsess about, so whatevs.)

The idea is to do your job, exactly, by the book, applying every single comma and period of the regulations. You’d be amazed what an effect it has.

Look, most of us don’t do things by the book as we’re supposed to do them. Mostly because, particularly in say an office environment, the rules for doing something are so cumbersome that nothing would ever be finished (if it was ever started.)

I mean, I know as a mere housewife, if I brought every rule and exacting measure to bear, dinner would never be cooked. I know this because I’ve taught two boys to cook (against their will, initially.) Hand them a recipe and it all becomes “But it calls for cilantro” “Sure, but cilantro tastes soapy to me, so use parsley.” “But the recipe calls for cilantro.” Or “But it says a quarter teaspoon of salt, and we don’t have a quarter teaspoon measure. I can’t do it.”

Just as effectively, they will not do what is not written down, even though it is absolutely obvious it should be done. I mean, you know, the kid had had soufle before. He SHOULD have known it didn’t contain eggshells, and also that you have to separate the egg whites before you beat them. (It was very quiche like. A crunchy quiche.)

Or take when I worked in an office, as a translators, and the secretaries starting rolling over their foreign language calls to me. That was not part of my job, and honestly was a pain in the neck, but the company refused to hire an international secretary (Well, technically I was supposed to be that, but my boss wasn’t doing his job, so it became my job. And this was a known thing.) So the poor people just rolled the calls to me. It was a bit of a pain in the neck, as I’d be in the middle of a translation from the German, and suddenly have to speak French to someone who wished to speak to one of our engineers. Or vice-versa.

I did it, mostly, because otherwise the wheels would come off our communications with our branches abroad.

But if I were on a zeal strike, I’d have two choices. Either ignore them, while I was hip-deep in a technical translation, or do exactly what it said in the add for the position when they hired me, and tweedle my thumbs between phone calls, because my boss was supposed to be doing the technical translations.

Either one of those would pile the pain way up and down the line, till the whole thing came to a grinding halt.

Of course, that’s the bad side of a Zeal Strike.

If you apply it up and down the line, the country will seize and stop, or at least stop working in any understandable way.

Particularly since so many of the rules and regulations imposed by the kakistocracy are fundamentally incompatible with the real world.

However, what else can you do when our institutions are under the illusion we are widgets and can be forced to play a part in their internal and irrational psychodrama? Not to mention their attempts to appease the people who put them in power: the PRC?

Be zealous, my friends. In the limits of the possible, be as zealous and stupid as you can be.

Let’s show these idiots where they get off.

Let’s show them they made the mistake of messing with the least tameable species on Earth: Americans.

Be ungovernable, be persnickety, be inventive. Be Americans.

307 thoughts on “A Strike of Zeal

  1. Mr. Spock: “If we were to do this by the book, hours would seem like days”…”By the book.” 🙂

        1. Like all the times in Doctor Who where the “hiding” characters are so conspicuous. It’s to let the audience know and a shorthand for a more effective technique.

          1. That, and Doctor Who was originally a kid’s show. So the idea was to let the little kids in the audience point out to their parents, “Look, they’re hiding!”

            To be fair, hiding in plain sight can be surprisingly effective in real life.

              1. Used to know a girl who would sometimes get startled just by noticing me nearby minding my own business. When she said I had scared her I’d respond with something like “Yeah, I maliciously sat here and did nothing at you. The horror.” 😉

                1. Depending on how well I knew the person that I accidently scared (and on how well that person knew me), I might have said “Just think how scared you’d be if I planned to scare you”. 😈

              2. I’ve scared the crap out of people by simply being quiet for a while and then speaking up.

                1. When I was gainfully employed, I got from a client a life-sized cardboard cutout of Willie Nelson (A Cuervo Tequila ad). Being a cardboard cutout it had no depth and so could be hidden behind a steel door frame. It became a game to stand it next to the glass front door to the building and watch as someone came up the walk, pulled the door open, stepped through … and froze.

            1. I once simply sat still at the end of a hall, watched a guy come out of the stairwell door in front of me, turn and head down the hall, go and knock on my door, get no response, slump, head back down the hall toward me (and the stairwell)….

              I waited until he was about 15 feet away, and said, “Hey.”

              Total jump-scare. He never saw me.

              Bear in mind the guy was actively looking specifically for me.

              1. *laughs*
                I came up with an idea of how that works, which may or may not work.

                He wasn’t looking FOR YOU.

                He was looking “For you at your place, which is identified via door.”

                This is based off of me looking for (item inside of thing) that was RIGHT THERE…but not actually (item).

                1. It occurs to me that there’s at least a few sermons about how the folks looking for The Christ didn’t notice Him because they KNEW what it would look like, and it wasn’t Him….

                  1. Old Testament, there’s the story of Naaman nearly missing his chance to be healed of his leprosy because Elisha sent a servant to tell him to wash in the Jordan instead of coming out and doing a big, flashy, “Be HEALED!” over him. He expected the big, flashy ritual, and instead got something that worked.

                    1. Considering that Elisha got a bunch of kids eaten by bears, I think I’d be perfectly happy if he stayed far away and sent a servant to do the healing stuff.

                    2. Being underage (and not very) is no excuse for crime, and they falsely accused him of murdering Elijah. The penalty for that is that which would have been inflicted on Elisha.

                    3. If the guy in the link I’m adding is right (Biblical scholar, some out there things, but solid on translations and willing to state when he’s speculating vs. when he thinks he has solid textual evidence) the “lads” were young men, possibly of royal or priestly descent and their shouts of “Go up, Go up, baldy!” were instructing him to “go up” to the high places to worship Baal. The link goes into detail about the specific words, etc.

                  1. *wiggles hand*

                    One, same way I can’t make the “unfocused your eyes to see the hidden image” stuff work, these videos have never “worked” for me. I ALWAYS freaking get distracted with the stuff I’m not supposed to be looking for. (“Hey, are those wild roses, or periwinkles, in the inlay?”)

                    Devil’s advocate— the guy is in dark, and moving similarly to the other dark. Even the style of moonwalking is similar to basketball shuffling.

                    Calling him a “moonwalking bear” exaggerates how out of place he is.

                    I know hyper-focus HAPPENS, but….

          2. >> “It’s to let the audience know and a shorthand for a more effective technique.”

            One of my favorite computer games is Invisible Inc, a turn-based, tile-based stealth game. Despite not being a comedy game the rules for concealment are downright silly, with enemy guards having vision cones narrow enough to qualify them as half-blind and your agents able to hide behind objects they blatantly shouldn’t. It’s so ridiculous that merely having the vision cone of a normal human being is, by itself, enough to make a certain type of guard one of the most dangerous opponents in the entire game.

            And yet, it works. The game still manages to sell the FEEL of being stealthy, and even if the rules are unrealistic they do make it easy to figure out whether you’ll be seen if the guards go where you expect them to (which is absolutely vital to know).

            There’s a somewhat analogous thing in Zachlike games, which revolve around solving open-ended programming and engineering problems. Both the tools you get and the problems you solve are laughably trivial compared to what real programmers and engineers work with, but it works because it keeps things at a level that a layman can relate to while still giving the right feel.

    1. Corner Gas had an episode where the two cops in town decide to “work to rule” and it ends up creating more work for them. S4E2 Dog River Dave

      1. In my hometown, when I were a lad, the bus drivers went on work to rule. They gave up after about three days, after the transit authority received a flood of compliments on how much better and more polite the service had become!

  2. They can’t get us widgets to work. That’s why they keep ratcheting up the pressure. Los Angeles has returned to requiring masks even for the vaccinated. The Administration keeps making threats through their spokesdummy, Biden, about taking our guns and nuking us. They wouldn’t be doing this if they felt they had the country under their control. I can imagine the CCP monitoring the TikTok feeds and getting on the phone to scream at the White House that there are all sorts of people out there posting black American flags. The People are not complying! Make them comply!

    Don’t know what will happen next.

    1. Pushback. It doesn’t QUITE work like they think it does (In fact, it’s already NOT where they expected it to be.).

    2. L.A. County Sheriff said he won’t enforce the new mask mandate, as being anti-science and a few other choice phrases. Sounded like he was fed up.

      1. LA County Sheriff Villanueva has been in hot water politically with the County Supervisors since at least least before the Wuhan Virus turned up (and a few months before that, I think). He’s very much aware that it’s in his best interests to keep the voters on his side, or else his job is in a very precarious position. Plus, the County Supervisors are already pissed off at him. If he launches a homeless sweep on one of the beachside piers (which he did a few weeks ago), and upsets the County Supervisors in the process, well… so? They already hate him. But the voters like it. So an announcement that the deputies will not be enforcing the new mask mandate doesn’t surprise me.

        Personally, I’m happy that he’s so responsive to the wishes of the voters. That is, after all, what elected officials are supposed to be.

        1. Originally I was rather suspicious of him, but he sure does seem to be working out to be the right guy for the job (as best you can get in L.A.) And an interesting quote from his camp:

          “We’re running against the woke left, and we’re going to win,” said Javier Gonzalez, a campaign consultant for Villanueva. “It’s going to be a revolt of the regular people who want things done.”

          https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/running-against-the-woke-left-can-sheriff-villanuevas-shift-to-the-right-work-in-la/ar-AAMcent

          Oooh, the no-one-likes-him-anymore polls have started. Clearly he’s doing something right!

          1. IIRC, according to a source I know, there’s potential reasons to be wary of him. But the reasons don’t have anything to do with right versus left. And my source didn’t know anything for certain.

            In any case, he certainly seems to have a better finger on the pulse of the county than the Supervisors do. And in a huge and very diverse county like Los Angeles, that’s extremely important.

            1. I somehow got on the mailing list for the Clayton County, Georgia sheriff department. And seems to be the same with their sheriff Victor Hill. Some questionable history, but hot damn does his department go hard after the perps. (Most of whom are black, but so is he, so there goes the usual complaint.)

              1. But part of the problem right now is that there are far too many politicians – including the District Attorney in Sheriff Villanueva’s county, George Gascon – who *don’t* have the survival instincts of snakes and rats. And, to make matters worse, they might not need those survival instincts in the meantime. Gascon’s an idiot even by the usual standards that we’re dealing with (almost *immediately* after taking office, one of his new policies got smacked down by a judge as being illegal). But I don’t know whether the recall initiative currently being aimed at him really has any chance of succeeding. There are just so many people who appear to be completely oblivious to what’s going on.

  3. They can’t get us widgets to work. That’s why they keep ratcheting up the pressure. Los Angeles has returned to requiring masks even for the vaccinated. The Administration keeps making threats through their spokesdummy, Biden, about taking our guns and nuking us. They wouldn’t be doing this if they felt they had the country under their control. I can imagine the CCP monitoring the TikTok feeds and getting on the phone to scream at the White House that there are all sorts of people out there posting black American flags. The People are not complying! Make them comply!

    Don’t know what will happen next.

  4. But hey, the idiots who hate the light tend to fixate on words and imagine all words have only one meaning, and that the one they obsess about, so whatevs.

    Hm…. now I’m wondering about the habit of some folks to fixate on various symbols as having ONLY ONE meaning.

    Because I’m the dragon obsessed person I am (I went from dinosaurs to dragons…) dragons or snakes type things come to mind– like the MANY Catholic and/or Christian folks who insist that snakes/dragons (Look, draco meant snake, even if it included monster-snakes.) are Always Evil.

    This…doesn’t jive well with either tradition (in various places the “dragon” has the same symbolic value as “the lion,” it’s powerful for good or ill, Banshee has some stuff on this) or with Christ Himself, or with the Father who had Moses use snakes for Big Shows Of I Am Awesome at LEAST twice. Eating the Egyptian wizard’s sticks, and curing those bitten by venomous snakes. Which is what Christ explicitly compared Himself to, in the second case.

    Symbols are flexible…..

      1. Which a lot of the folks tend to ignore– although they’re so wishy-washy about if it’s the “prowling lion ready to consume” (from memory) or the “Lion of Judah” that they pick as the Always Means, I figured I’d just leave it for folks who knew what’s up.

      2. Had an awesome geek moment, just last week I mentioned something to the half-elf about the snake on a stick being a positive example of snake symbols in the Bible, and he pointed out “yes, and Moses’ staff ate the Egyptian priest’s staffs shortly before that.” (I was looking at puns in the Bible, Bronze and Snake are puntastic)

        Which was a point I’d made, shortly after realizing it, when someone did the “snakes always evil” thing.

        He went on to point out that thus, snake + staff of Moses was even MORE of a “symbol of Himself.”

        1. There’s a lot of this online, and unfortunately also offline. I’ve had people demand to know the official Catholic interpretation of every verse of the Bible.

          The worst was the poor guy whose pastor taught (and his pastor wasn’t alone, I found out later) that the parable of “the kingdom of heaven is like a woman who puts a tiny bit of leaven into a loaf, and it spreads and leavens the whole loaf” was about the spread of evil, because leaven always meant “the leaven of the Pharisees.” Because it meant it in _one place_. Nobody can use words or imagery in a multi-valent ways.

          He also thought the parable of the mustard seed was about the kingdom of heaven being a horrible thing, because the birds of the air come and nest in it, and there’s the parable of the different kinds of ground where the birds of the air represent demons.

          1. *facepalm*

            Y’know, and I thought that pointing to you for “hey, look, folks using dragons as like identical to lions in metaphors” would be the limit…..

        2. We are the guardians of Avrim T. Dragon III, who wants to be a ferocious, fire-breathing dragon when he grows up. Or a knight in shining armor, he’s not sure which yet. Meanwhile, he’s only five years old and his mother won’t let him smoke.
          We do the children’s message at church. And since, unfortunately, it’s an older congregation and we’re short of children, we do it every Sunday anyway (when we’re home) for the grown-ups.

                1. Dragons are guardians. Most of them guard their own hoard, but some of them branch out to better causes.

                  1. Oooh.

                    Though, of all the thoughts coming to mind, the one quickest to put into words is “who says that guarding a hoard isn’t a perfectly good cause?”

                    1. As long as the hoard is licitly obtained, it’s an innocent one, but good requires more than mere innocency.

                    2. One Idea.

                      The Hoard isn’t technically his but he voluntarily took the guardianship of it.

                      It seems that an old wizard had collected various magic artifacts that could be helpful in the right hands along with other magic artifacts that would be extremely dangerous in the wrong hands.

                      The old wizard knew that the dragon was looking for a new cave and also knew that he wouldn’t use the dangerous magic artifacts.

                      So the old wizard asked the dragon to guard this Hoard of magic artifacts. Keeping the dangerous artifacts out of wrong hands and releasing some of the other artifacts into the hands of people who justly needed them.

                      It’s not an easy job as some of the dangerous artifacts aren’t comfortable to be around even for a powerful dragon.

                    3. Books yes, but there are other artifacts of power included in the hoard. 😉

                    4. The sort of dragon who can’t let anything go would be a good guardian for cursed items.

                      Also, a dragon can guard the Fort Knox equivalent.

                    5. Guarding one’s own hoard is innocent. Administering a wizard’s for the greater good is good.

                    6. We’ve already had a BookWyrm — Periapt in One Good Knight by Mercedes Lackey.

                    7. The meaning I intended for that statement included ‘who are /you/, to tell /me/ what is morally good’. Maybe with raving about economics thrown in on top. Apparently, being a contrarian jerk is one of the first things inside me to surface, and among the easiest.

                      Psychologically, the idea that dragons are guardians, and that a dragon can be in search of something to be a guardian of, was one of the things striking me as interesting.

                    8. Nothing to do with the way you said it.

                      I have a lot of issues with moral authority and teachings about economic activity. I may be incorrect on those, I haven’t sorted it out. The words to object come easily, because practiced, but the words to clearly discuss do not. ‘Contrarian jerk’ is a concise summary, but the deeper answer is that I also had dragon ideas that matched your thinking, but the one I could find words for was the one that didn’t match.

                      I’m aware of Confucian and Socialist/Communist false moral teachings on economics. And I’m badly enough educated in theology that I have to grope my way towards ideas like “if there are enough false teachings in an area, is there not a moral responsibility to be more suspicious?”.

                      So, pretty much purely my own damage, and I kinda regret not taking better care with my words.

                    9. . And I’m badly enough educated in theology that I have to grope my way towards ideas like “if there are enough false teachings in an area, is there not a moral responsibility to be more suspicious?”.

                      I highly suggest Jimmy Akin and Mitch Pacwa on Catholic Answers (catholic.com) for self-education. They are both methodical geeks that I think you will find easy to understand, argument-wise, because of their style.

                  2. I can’t help imagining a Hoarder Dragon — like the people in those Hoarder shows, with his lair stuffed so full of junk he can barely crawl inside. He’s got issues, but where can a dragon go for help? Who dares to tell a dragon, “What you need most is a dumpster the size of the Titanic!”

          1. >> “who wants to be a ferocious, fire-breathing dragon when he grows up. Or a knight in shining armor, he’s not sure which yet.”

            Well, tell him to make up his mind before he ends up having to slay himself to rescue some princess he kidnapped.

    1. Those people may not be distinguishing between the symbol and the reality.

      There’s a certain amount of magical thinking that works on blurring or ignoring the distinction.

      If you are trying to push kids into a symbol manipulation cult, you might try to keep the kids from having the tools to make and use that distinction.

      Is George Floyd a symbol? If so, of what?

      If one thinks that symbols cause reality, then the creation, promotion and spread of certain symbols can drive a change in reality. Beyond this, if such symbols have a one to one mapping to meaning, then the results of spreading a symbol are deterministic. And selling someone on both ideas, and then trying to stampede them into following the meaning you select, might be pretty attractive to certain sorts of manipulator.

      Makes it a bit weird from a background that reads a wide range of fiction, with symbols one may or may not interpret as having any particular meaning.

      When I first read Amber, I had no idea about traditional symbolism of the Unicorn, or about Anderson’s chaos and order in Three Hearts. So, the Serpent of Chaos was just a fancy magic animal.

      Eventually, I learned, and thought about it, and all of a sudden understood why people might not at all consider the later five titles to be in continuity with the first five novels. I like the Merlin books, and can still read them all the way I originally did. But now I see that during the first books, Zelazny started off with one assumption, then later decided to push a different reading to sell more books.

        1. I think the symbolic significance of it falling down by itself since it was incompetently constructed is better.

      1. That, and the Merlin cycle starts off with WTF that’s never resolved unless you buy the concept that Merlin is suicidally unobservant with a major case of dumbass. It reminded me of trying to read those horrible Thomas Covenent books; after a while I started rooting for the other side because the supposed protagonist was an idiot.

        1. Having read the originals back-when, I plodded doggedly through a couple of the latter-day Covenant sequels, and … Thomas goes from persistently taste-testing evil to just plain dumb. And the environment goes from fascinating to boring. Apparently the author has gulped down literary brutalism in indigestible chunks.

          Then again, a while back I realized he has but one theme, and that is “how far can the protagonist symbiotically degrade himself and others without anyone being redeemed?” It’s in the Mirror books, but only peripherally. Developed more in Covenant. It’s the totality of the Gap series. I no longer read his stuff.

    2. OK, this is sort of off-topic, but I’ve just discovered The Chosen TV series, and it’s terrific. It’s the story of Jesus and his apostles, but, uniquely, it cleverly fills in the parts only alluded to in the gospels. Mary Magdalene’s story is fleshed out and tied in cleverly with Nicodemus. Matthew is portrayed as autistic with his inability to fit in and connect with people helping to explain his work as a tax collector as well as his later turn as the author of one of the gospels. Nathaniel is portrayed as a failed architect, and his backstory lends tremendous and ingenious gravitas to Jesus’ words that, “I saw you under the fig tree,” turning it into the transcendent moment that the gospel shows but doesn’t explain. In all, the series brilliantly portrays the difficulty of accepting Jesus as God as well as its inevitable undeniability for those who lived with him. Absolutely marvelous writing. Thought of this because Moses’ snake (caduceus) figured in one of the episodes as a flashback.

      1. I’d have to do a dive into the theology before I trust it…but Bible fanfic has a long and reasonably respectable history, so awesome!

      2. Given that Matthew was apparently “that finance guy who noticed that Judas was totally stealing the whole time,” I think it’s silly to portray him as autistic. Matthew describes a fair amount of interpersonal stuff as an evangelist. I just don’t see it.

        Nor would the Romans, or anyone else, have appointed some autistic guy as a tax collector (unless his family was ridiculously rich and influential), because ROMANS DID NOT DO DISABILITIES, unless they were disabilities from battle. People with natural deformities or mental illness were unlucky and cursed by the gods. Heck, even most of the Jews thought disabled people were cursed.

        Matthew was good with money and finance. He wasn’t naive. Plenty of Jews were willing to live a Hellenic/Roman life and be looked down on, because the Hellenic/Roman life came with goodies. And a lot less work obeying the Law.

        But having an autistic character is a trope right now, so it’s an entertainment decision.

        1. Well, you’ll have to see how it’s portrayed. The character is clearly shown as being on the spectrum but hardly disabled, just bright and socially odd, more like the Sheldon character of Big Bang Theory. To me the opening of Matthew reads like something someone on the spectrum might write.

          I’m sure one can quibble with many of their choices, but I think the ones they made make sense and don’t contradict scripture but greatly enhance the story. They put a disclaimer before the first episode to point out that they’ve gone beyond what’s in scripture, but that it’s no substitute for reading the gospels.

        2. John is the one who comments that Judas was stealing from the common store. I would question the idea of Matthew being autistic (given he invited Jesus and the disciples home for a party), but I’ve known engineers that are socially functional, but, um, odd.

        3. Yeah Tax collector was essentially an extortionist. They has an amount to collect, anything over that was theirs. Also they were working with the occupying Romans so REALLY hated as they were traitors to the G*d of Abraham. Don Corleone is probably a closer match than anyone on the autism spectrum/

          1. The Romans actually auctioned off the right to tax the various pieces of the rest of the empire, so it was private enterprise (well, sort of) with the promise of enforcement by the military. Fascinating! Evil, but fascinating.

    3. But not as flexible as snakes.

      With the motif nailed down by the bookends of the snake in the garden, and the dragon in revelations, there is a limited amount of ambiguity to play with (in the Western, Christian worldview).
      While “intrinsically evil” can be argued against with difficulty, “intrinsically dangerous to man” is pretty much baked in.

  5. “Working to rule” is the way I learned of it. Irish democracy is essentially the same thing. Do exactly what you must and no more. Not quite Atlas Shrugs but given the split between those who rule and those who do the effect would be much the same, collapse.

    1. It’s the method that labor unions use to slow things down when they are unhappy about something but don’t want to actually strike.

    2. My understanding was that “Irish democracy” meant large numbers of people quietly ignoring obnoxious rules as if they didn’t exist, without flying any “Protest!” flags over it. So it’s sort of the opposite of white mutiny/working to rule/malicious compliance, even if the motive for both is wanting the obnoxious rules to go away.

      Clogging a freeway by obeying the speed limit would be malicious compliance. Exceeding the posted limit the way everyone else does is Irish democracy.

      1. Irish Democracy is only doing what you are compelled to do. Remove your consent. Give them nothing voluntarily. It can be devastating.

  6. I’ve always heard it called and referred to it as “malicious compliance.” Mostly in the context of a sailor doing EXACTLY what the chief or division officer told him to do…

  7. Ms. Hoyt, I liked this and it feeds an idea I have and hope you can publicize.

    Lately some orchestras are telling their musicians that they will be fired if they are not vaccinated.

    They need to pay dearly for this. I am reaching out to the soloists they engage for virtuoso performances and asking them to obtain a pledge from orchestra managements that they allow full vaccine freedom. I am telling these artists that if they perform with an orchestra that has not made and published the pledge or has violated it that we will peacefully protest their performances no matter where they are or how removed they are from the offending venue.

    A nice post from a freedom loving blogger like you can help this happen.

  8. The other problem is that it only works when the one(s) you’re Zeal Striking against are smart enough to get the message.

    Back when I first started working in The Supermarket, the Perishables Manager would always hassle the poor souls working the closing shift at my counter because they’d start the closing & cleaning process several hours before the counter was scheduled to close (the store itself was open 24/7). That got his undies in a knot because The Corporate Manual clearly stated that the closing & cleaning process for our counter should be started no more than ninety minutes prior to closing time. Problem was that our store was a genuine supermarket, one of the largest in the chain, and our department’s counter was sized to match, and The Corporate Manual had been written back when the chain was comprised entirely of small corner grocery stores. It was physically impossible to properly close down and clean our counter in less than 90 minutes – it took three times that long if we were lucky.

    Perishables Manager didn’t care. The Corporate Manual said that’s how long it should take, therefore that’s how long it should take. And we’d be written up if we started closing down early.

    So we decided, fine. If Perishables Manager says we can’t start closing down early, we’ll start closing down at exactly 90 minutes before closing time and rack up overtime. That’ll learn him.

    Except it didn’t: he started writing us up for deliberately taking too long to close and racking up unnecessary overtime.

    It didn’t matter how much we argued, it didn’t matter what evidence we presented in our favor. He.
    Would. Not. Budge. Because The Corporate Manual says it should take no more than 90 minutes, and The Corporate Manual was infallible.

    Thankfully, he impressed Corporate so much that he got promoted and made store manager… at another location, thank God (though I pity the poor workers who had to suffer under his rule). His replacement, thankfully, understood that The Corporate Manual was not infallible, and actively encouraged us to start shutting down the counter several hours before closing so we could all get out on time.

    1. This is the problem with such things- rules, regs, laws… They matter to the law abiding. They matter much less to those just looking to get away with something.

      Look, enough of us are close enough to “on the spectrum” to be somewhat rigorous in following the rules, such that we get annoyed when people don’t. This is not the default, normal state of humanity. Getting to the point that *most* people are law abiding folk is quite frankly a bloody miracle, and I mean that in the full biblical sense of the word. Himself had to have a hand in it.

      When enough people don’t care about the laws anymore, things get very, very bad, very, very fast. Rule of the strong is only good for those that are the strong- and even then, only in comparison to everybody else. It sucks as an organizational system. It’s better than complete lawlessness (which doesn’t last long, usually), but is beat out even by Communism. At least there the decline is somewhat consistent.

      We don’t face an opponent who will deal honestly. There are times and places where malicious compliance *can* work, and work well. You have to pick your targets intelligently. But when the rules don’t matter because your opponent is willing to shamelessly cheat, you need a way to enforce consequences for rule breaking. 2016 was a good start. Better than I’ve seen in decades. But it’s going to take a lot more than one man in the right place saying “Eff you!” on behalf of all of us.

      I only *have* two middle fingers. But I won’t be giving in while there’s still and American spirit left.

      1. I will note that very few of the people doing the “you have to wear a mask! The Governor said so!” were Odds.
        That was mainly the province of former mean girls reliving their salad days.

    2. Part of the problem that you ran into was that you had two contradictory rules in place, and your manager was attempting to enforce both of them. At the start, you were complying with the rule that said that you had to finish up by a certain time (even if you weren’t actively cognizant of following that rule). The problem manager pointed out that you were failing to comply with the rule that said you needed to start closing down by a certain time.. and when you did so, you ran afoul of the earlier rule. In short, you were in a situation in which no matter what you did, you were going to break at least one rule.

      If the “finish by this time” rule hadn’t existed, then it might have been possible to get the problem manager to take note. But because it did exist, he was able to take refuge behind it and avoid analyzing the situation.

      1. We were fully cognizant of the “you must finish closing by x-time” rule since Corporate was ultra anal about employees racking up overtime. And while the rules were not deliberately contradictory (they had, as I said, not been written with a counter as large as ours in mind), everyone was fully aware that it was impossible to follow both rules at the same time. Except, of course, for Perishables Manager. He wasn’t trying to take refuge behind anything: he was one of those academic bureaucrat types who believed that The Corporate Manual was infallible and superseded all things, including the basic laws of physics and the space-time continuum. Even the Store Manager recognized our predicament and told him to cut us some slack, but he would not be swayed: The Corporate Manual said that This Is How It Must Be Done, therefore This Is How They Must Do It.

  9. Honestly, the only time I can manage a zeal strike is if my rump is in a sling for missing the last jot. Had a customer like that, and it did make programs cost about twice what they would have if we had not needed to document absolutely everything to ensure our defense, when that customer came calling.

    When you know the customer isn’t going to cut your neck off, you can actually stick it out and get things done that wouldn’t have otherwise been possible.

    It’s remarkable the difference that can be accomplished.

    Now, when corporate starts pushing some of their other stuff down to the lower levels, I’m more likely going to have to be the nail that gets hammered down. We all have those limits we cannot cross and still live with ourselves.

    1. I trained myself to memorize phone calls. When a certain supervisor would question me about the details of a customer’s request, I could recite the conversation back exactly. It only took three months of that before the boss told the supervisor to chill.

      1. I was never able to memorize a request call. However, what I could do is write up the client’s request, send it to them to edit, then send back. Never get it back? Didn’t count. IF they complained later, then I had the email to forward with the highlighted “what to do” to make the request official. Plus note, they never sent it back.

  10. There was an episode of a very old TV show (Valentine’s Day IIRC) where the protagonist and his crew decided to start enforcing all the laws that never came off the books, like having to have someone walk ahead of your car with a lantern if you were driving at night to warn pedestrians. I think the Portland police could use a man like that.

  11. For my formally acknowledged public writings I have to have corporate approval. Sometimes you get some edits that are just plain silly. One changed the phrase “dark arts” to “mysterious arts.” Sigh.

  12. So when the vaccination police knock on our front door, I can’t just say, “None of your business, go away.” I should invite them in and see how much of their time I can waste by playing the slightly dotty old lady before throwing them out?

      1. Makes me wish that I hadn’t gotten the vaccination because that would be “Fun”. 😈

        1. Oh, I did get the vaccine. But I got it in a different city, not from my GP, and I betcha they aren’t smart enough to figure that out before knocking on the door. I might show them my card – after we have a nice, long, utterly frustrating chat, just so they know they’ve been taken for a ride.

            1. Probably related to the system the military uses to keep track of who is in DEERS. My younger child was born in January. Come the new fiscal year on October 1 and she vanished from the system. My husband had to go back into PSD with her birth certificate and re-register her.

              Over the next couple of years we kept having issues with Tricare; sometimes we even had to use her middle name instead to get things paid. Finally I got a chance to go into the local office and we traced the issue back to the fact that I apparently had *two* children born on that date. One a girl, X. Elizabeth [lastname] and one a boy, Elizabeth X. [last name]. I suggested that even if I’d had more drugs during the delivery than just one shot of stadol, I was pretty sure I would have noticed a twin. Tricare merged the records.

              We have no idea how the system could drop her first name and change her sex.

              1. The system didn’t- a careless clerk did. An observant clerk finally noted it. Observant clerks are the more rare type. At Walgreens the other day the pharmacy tech was confused and then realized my better half was in their system as Mary and Mary E. It’s been that way for a while- but no one noticed before.

          1. The risk is they decide you are giving them a fraudulent card and act against you for it.

            Or decide not to care you’ve got a legit card. Remember these folks do not play by the rules. They have and will simply make stuff up out of whole cloth to harm people on their beep list.

            1. And this right here is where Fox’s nonsense about plea bargains meets the rock of reality.

              “You can either plead guilty to X misdemeanor or we’ll put up a laundry list of charges and drag you into court for years. Oh, and you can pay for the defense counsel, any experts to refute our “evidence”, lab time, etc. You have too many assets to qualify for a public defender. Meanwhile, you can sit in jail until you can arrange bail… ”

              Examples abound of these “process is the punishment” types of tactics. Heck, look at what happened to General Flynn, who took a plea bargain on the advice of counsel not because he was guilty but because a) they were going to charge his family members, b) his lawyers turned out to be conflicted over their personal and political relationships with Democrats, and c) he was out of money to maintain a defense. The ONLY reason he was able to get an acquittal is that his case was famous enough to attract outside pro bono help.

              And this has been going on for DECADES. Personal example here (from an “internet rando” whom multiple members of this blog, including Sarah, have actually met in person):

              Montgomery AL, 1981: DA James “Jimmy” Evans, being on an antipornography crusade, got a law through the county commission that “dirty magazines” had to be kept behind the counter. His definition of “dirty magazine” included Playboy. Blatantly against the First Amendment; had a SCOTUS ruling saying so. It was B. Dalton’s corporate policy to put legal merchandise out where customers could get it, and that’s what our store manager told Jimmy when he called wanting to know when the store was going to comply. The manager pointed out that this issue had been settled by SCOTUS. The response was:

              “I know that. And when they hear the case, they may toss it again. But in the meantime, both you and your assistant manager will be arrested and charged and put in jail for violating it, and I’ll do everything I can to make sure you both stay there.”

              Our assistant manager was seven months pregnant at the time. She might very well have lost the baby, so the manager took the “plea” and moved the magazines.

              1. Something David Friedman pointed out is that the traditional idea that “plea bargains let criminals get off easy” doesn’t actually fit together.

                Because what plea bargains actually do is let the DA quickly and cheaply process a bunch of cases where the defendant folds, and then has a huge stockpile of resources to crush the difficult cases. Guilt or innocence are of course irrelevant to the grinding economics of this process, only how good the DA is at bluffing, which is backed up by that war chest.

                While Friedman didn’t cover is that there is another problem with pleas in that they make DAs lazy, stupid, and evil. Most cases they never have to put in any real effort beyond coming up with really scary threats. So when they encounter someone who actually knows how to fight and has the resources to do so they mostly get their asses handed to them.

                1. Prosecutors with the wrong ideology/religion are evil, no matter how lazy or hardworking they are.

                  Fundamentally, assertions of prosecutorial abuse, systemic injustice, and that police are obligated to perfectly safeguard the welfare of suicidal mentally ill out on the streets have been used for decades to build a narrative. That narrative has been abused to both generally manipulate people within the legal and forensic professions, and to specifically put evil people into positions as mayors, law faculty, judges and prosecutors.

                  Those evil people have managed to create the appearance of a widespread conspiracy, raising questions about decades worth of practice.

                  No choice of formal policy can have a good outcome if the people implementing it are evil.

                  Foxfier is not wrong to push back against the idea that it is some specific policy. That policy might have been licit if complaints about specific policy had not been used to pack the system with evil people.

                  You and Steve are not wrong to raise questions about practice.

                  Things are enough of a mess right now that it is hard to conclusively show that someone (especially if actually pointing at a real part of the elephant) is wrong.

                  I might even not be wrong to argue that the murder statutes are actually tyrannical, and that we should ensure that vigilante killings can never be prosecuted. (Okay, I do not entirely believe these arguments are correct, but can I prove that they are incorrect?)

                  1. Foxfier is not wrong to push back against the idea that it is some specific policy. That policy might have been licit if complaints about specific policy had not been used to pack the system with evil people.

                    The problem is that she objects more when accusations of practice or ideology are brought up.

                    Admittedly she does have a justified interest in pushing back against things like “why don’t we just execute all of the FBI?”. But never allowing for the possibility of real, uh, “systemic”, problems in the law/justice/enforcement system is the exact same error in reverse.

                    It is in fact part of why people start going with “let’s just execute all of the FBI”. Because they never see the “good cops*” do anything but help cover for the bad ones. I’m not that far; I can still acknowledge the existence of good cops, but I also understand why there are people who are no longer willing to do so.

                    * where “cop” is a placeholder for whatever the particular office might be

                    1. By “objecting” you mean when you make claims and I offer proof that it ain’t as described?

                      Yes, yes I do. Nasty habit of mine.

                      “This is the situation.”
                      “It’s actually more complicated than that, here.”
                      “::accusations against motivation rather than dealing with evidence::”

                    2. ” Because they never see the “good cops*” do anything but help cover for the bad ones.”

                      Goes a little past that. They are enabling the bad ones by giving the illusion of normal functioning.

                      I saw her comment about “the local branches will demand to have written instructions to do anything bad.”

                      Nonsense on stilts. For examples of what ACTUALLY happens in reality….

                      Obama makes a “joke” about having the IRS audit his enemies. No official instructions, no memos, nothing. But Lois Lerner knows that if she picks up her private cell phone and calls the head of the Cincinnati office, he’s perfectly fine with selectively denying tax exempt status to Tea Party groups. Likewise, the head looks over his personnel roster and says “Hmmm. Let’s make sure that Bob, Jill, and Maurice handle all the tax exempt applications. They’re team players, they know what to do. I’ve been keeping track of them (or got them the job). Make sure that George, Susan, and Donald never handle any. They’re vets (or Republican voters) and might balk.”

                      “Will no one rid me of this troublesome priest!” has a long and proven track record of leaving archbishops dead.

                    3. Nonsense on stilts.

                      I don’t think that is quite true.

                      You will have plenty of people who are “good people”, and will refuse this sort of not-quite-order. (good luck finding “good people” will do anything beyond that though…..)

                      The problem is something I brought up in a very garbled way a couple years ago and got into a bunch of arguments over it: maybe you only have 1% who will commit abuses or atrocities. But totalitarians never seem to have much problem finding that 1% who will do it. Sure they have to work at it, but there is a huge difference between “had to spend some time and effort finding monsters to hire”, vs “can’t find anyone”.

                      Staffing a Dirlewanger Brigade is hard. But you will be able to staff it, and you only need one.

                    4. “maybe you only have 1% who will commit abuses or atrocities.”

                      1. Where is the line between abuse and atrocity? And whose definition is being used?
                      2. When does an accumulation of abuses become an atrocity?
                      3. Is it really only 1% who will commit abuses? Especially when “Three felonies a day” is the rule.

                      There’s ALWAYS a technical ability to “act within the law”. Especially when the law is written for “selective enforcement.” Again, see Jan 6 “insurrection” vs “peaceful protests”.

                    5. I was being generous with the 1% to make a point. I don’t know what the real incidence rates are, only that regardless of the numbers it is enough to cause catastrophic problems.

                      As for “abuse” vs “atrocity”, I was just casting a wide net of anything they are absolutely not supposed to be doing. If I had to pin it down more than that I’d put “abuse” as the day to day bureaucratic nonsense, up to things like the Tea Party IRS incidents. “Atrocities” I would reserve for when bodies start falling, or people getting dissappeared (both of which are of course happening), aka; active use of violence, not just the threat thereof.

                    6. But totalitarians never seem to have much problem finding that 1% who will do it.

                      F.A. Hayek, The Road to Serfdom, Chapter Ten: “Why the Worst Get on Top”

                    7. I saw her comment about “the local branches will demand to have written instructions to do anything bad.”

                      Nonsense on stilts. For examples of what ACTUALLY happens in reality….

                      Behold:
                      what actually happens, as attested to by multiple folks, is inferior to Snelson’s theory of What Must Be True.

                      I’m sure it’ll happen the same day that my law enforcement acquaintances execute me, as he has also predicted.

                    8. We’ve got more than 1% that routinely commit violent felonies today, just because they want to. A lot of them used to be in jail, but the Democrats are letting them out as fast as they can.

                      I’d say there’s close to 10% ‘Good Germans’ that will carry out their orders if assured of no consequences if they do, and threatened if they won’t.

                      Which is one reason the UCMJ explicitly disallows the ‘I vas yust followink orderss’ defense. We need more of that.
                      ———————————
                      Ma Lemming: “If all your friends jumped off a cliff into the sea would you…oh…um…nevermind.”

                    9. We’ve got more than 1% that routinely commit violent felonies today, just because they want to.

                      I believe the usual number from criminology is around 2-3% of the population are highly deviant along multiple axes.

                      I’d say there’s close to 10% ‘Good Germans’ that will carry out their orders if assured of no consequences if they do, and threatened if they won’t.

                      Good Germans are somewhat different than monsters. The monsters can hardly be restrained from butchery, and will gleefully do whatever the MiC wants them to do. Good Germans have to be broken to it, and will be devoured by social pressure. There is also an even larger category of “Good German Lite”, which isn’t useful as stormtroopers, but are just fine with doing all the other stuff to keep things running as long as the horror doesn’t have to be right in front of their eyes.

                      In the end this is all quibbling; whatever the particular makeup of the population, the death trains still run.

                      Which is one reason the UCMJ explicitly disallows the ‘I vas yust followink orderss’ defense. We need more of that.

                      When the coming unpleasantness is over one of the priority changes which must be made is to spread this understanding through the civilian hierarchy as well. WAAAAAAAAAAY too many police use the excuse of “I don’t make the law, I just enforce it”.

                    10. “When the coming unpleasantness is over one of the priority changes which must be made is to spread this understanding through the civilian hierarchy as well. ”

                      Given the numbers of vets who transition into the civilian Fed workforce, especially DoD / law enforcement, one would expect that it should have already. That’s essentially the case Foxfier is making for not treating Fedlaw enforcement organizations as enemies general, because those vets won’t allow / carry out abuses..

                      Again, reality is showing otherwise.

                2. Except that they abuse the practice by grossly overcharging people and then working to bankrupt them to force people to accept plea deals regardless of guilt, and they do this KNOWING they don’t have a case they can prove. Look at what they did to General Flynn,.

              2. I think this is one of those topics that needs wrap up for today with an “agree to disagree” because so many personal philosophies as well as various forms of evidence and forms of argument are involved. It’s starting to tip into “more heat than light.”

                1. I think I’ll just let Col Schlicter have the last word:

                  https://townhall.com/columnists/kurtschlichter/2021/07/19/are-there-any-good-apples-n2592697

                  “Many serve in silence, grumbling to the few friends that they can trust. They know this is all wrong, but they have a mortgage and besides, if all the good apples leave, who is left?

                  But does it matter that the institutions are all bad apples if the good apples never do a damn thing to stop them?

                  No. What they do is buck up the institutions that we should let collapse from the weight of their own mendacity and failure. The good apples are enablers. Bad apples need the good apples. And the good apples are good little apples, showing up for work, following orders, mentally excusing themselves from their participation in the abominations that our institutions have become.”

          1. Ah, but are they really infected, or is it a false positive? Or is this some utterly incompetent effort to enhance their “we are brave martyrs,” narrative?

              1. Which is why Gov Abbott has prefiled special session calls for 100% of the time until the next regular session starts in 2 years. Texas only has the lege in session every other year.

        2. I feel so ripped off by my vaccine. No access to 5G network, no magnetism, no Force sensitivity…

          (Okay, that last part is my fault. Thought “m” in mRNA stood for “midichlorians” and apparently it doesn’t… darn it.) 😮

      2. I’ve been summoned to see the doctor for a Medicare Annual(yikes!) Wellness Visit. Since we already had the not-vax discussion, I figure it will come up again, and again. He lost me last time when he described it as my civic duty to take the crap, no matter that I had the Kung Flu in March 2020. (I’m in the age group where it could have been nasty, but I’m more post-diabetic than Type II (blood sugars are normal through diet) and it came across as a really bad flu.

        The answer to the shot is still no, with $SPOUSE taking it to Hell No!!!111eleventy!. There’s enough information on adverse reactions and the likelyhood that taking the not-vax can hurt others to make my stance firm.

        I’ve been noting comments that the positive Covid tests and cases amongst the vaxxed are really a reaction to the not-vaccine. Trying to read the VAERS output from the CDC gets a lot of feelgood bafflegab. “Pay no attention to the really horrible numbers. They’re a small percentage, yadda yadda.” Way too many red flags for my taste.

        1. Husband got the VA medical letter “calling on him to serve his country once again”….by getting the COVID shot.

          Rough paraphrase: “Hahahaha no F off you manipulative such and such.”

    1. I’m waiting for the FBI to open a 1-800-anonymous finkline for reporting “extremists” on. Then the vax-jerks are going to feature prominently on it as often as I get bored.

      It worked to make Deng Xiaoping shut his down….

      1. “Sorry. The dog will be noisy. I don’t want the cats to slip out. Let’s go sit on the brick wall out front.” Now waste time.

        We got our shots too. At least hubby and I did. The primary clinic we go to knows nothing about it. We didn’t go through the clinic. We didn’t each go through the same vaccine source.

      2. The Project House is getting a Dutch door. I don’t know why they’re not more popular. You can open the top half and accept deliveries or check people out before letting them in.

    2. Montana AG has discouraging words for the Vaccine Police:

      https://rumble.com/vjyrf5-not-gonna-fly-in-montana-ag-knudsen-responds-to-biden-strike-force.html

      Basically he says the right answer is “none of your business”, and if they persist, call the sheriff and report ’em for trespassing.

      And as someone else says, don’t let them inside, at all. Go outside and shut the door behind you before you speak to them. Once inside, they can report you for any other “violations” they happen to observe, and I wouldn’t put it past some few to be covertly in the pay of the truly nefarious, or just plain casing the joint.

      1. NEVER say “sure, you can come in” to any official.

        As folks from *multiple* agencies told me– if you invite someone in, it’s a whole new rule set, and if they give you crud just say that you don’t want to be liable for any damage they do.

        It’s polite, it’s plausible, and it’s A GOOD IDEA.

        1. “Oh, let’s stay outside, I’m in the middle of cleaning the living room and it’s FULL of trip hazards. Here, have a seat on the porch bench.”

          1. You’re much too kind. My reaction is likely to be more along the lines of, “Sure, we can talk — when you come back with a subpoena. Now, get off my lawn.”

        2. After all, everyone knows that once you invite a vampire in, they can come back whenever they want to.

          What do you mean, not everyone knows this? What ARE they teaching in school these days?!?

          1. You will trust our vampire friends, or else. With the heavy implication that the ‘or else’ is worse than death of yourself and your loved ones by blood loss, and the animation of their corpses by uncanny means. You aren’t a racist sexist homophobe, are you?

  13. All these good comments on this excellent article on passive resistance, and nobody has mentioned the The Good Soldier Švejk ?(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Good_Soldier_%C5%A0vejk) Apparently, y’all need to read more.

    “The story begins in Prague with news of the assassination in Sarajevo that precipitates World War I.

    Švejk displays such enthusiasm about faithfully serving the Austrian Emperor in battle that no one can decide whether he is merely an imbecile or is craftily undermining the war effort.”

    1. There is also a movie version with subtitles, which I have on CD, and it is a great comedy. Svejk always gets promoted up when he screws up. At the end he is in a field where every thing is blown up and he is the only one left standing. One of the funniest parts is at the beginning where all the conscripts who claim some health problem are threatened with a large enema. Suddenly they don’t have any problems and are sent off to the war. Some say this was also the inspiration for MASH.

  14. The discussion is reminding me of when I was discussing with my son the difference between a literal genie and a malicious genie.

    The literal genie will give you exactly what you wished.

    The malicious genie will make sure to use the worst interpretation of what you wished.

    There is a difference. 😆

  15. Government at all levels makes and ignores all kinds of work rules. With a pretty much anti-union mindset I ended up being the union rep where I worked. But I also feel that if there are rules- BOTH SIDES NEED TO FOLLOW THEM. I was an 8 hour worker- I didn’t get an actual lunch. But I also didn’t have to work unless there was, like actual work to be done. So when the other 8 hour workers religiously took their lunch together at the same time every day, I’d be off making rounds of my equipment. Had to explain to them that if they told people who called- “I’ll get to it after lunch” it would give the administration an excuse to extend our work day 1/2 hour- so we’d be there 8-1/2 hours instead of 8. The admin people were 7-1/2 workers- they all had a negotiated 1/2 hour lunch, with 2 15 minute breaks. In the contract. When they complained at one union meeting that in order to get their work done they had to work through lunch and not take breaks I told them “Don’t do THAT!” The contract said 1/2 hour lunch, 2 15 minute breaks, take them! In their case, if a supervisor says “I need you to do this now!” You tell them “When I’m done with lunch.” and if they have a hissy fit- I’ll deal with them.

    Strict adherence by all workers to OSHA lockout-tagout procedures would slow any business down. One spot I worked at for over 10 years, when I left, ever entry to date in the LOTO book had been made by me. Every inspection showed we were in full compliance with LOTO instructions. Apparently the electrician and the general mechanics and the plumber never ever did any work that required LOTO.

    1. *blink*

      Not keeping up with the LOTO logs can be… Dangerous to one’s bottom line. My company received regular visits from the local snoops, because we Had Money, of course. Keeping the books saved several tens of thousands, if not hundreds, a year in things they couldn’t ding us for.

      1. Be a large corporate timber company and have a logging tower come down at a landing … No one was hurt. Everyone was where they were suppose to be doing whatever they were suppose to be doing, during whatever phase that was occurring when one or more cables snapped and down came the tower. The investigation even pulled MY training records and LOTO (early ’90s, computer electrical) records, and I went nowhere near the woods or landings.

    2. Our corporate LoTo rules are pretty straight forward.

      If this starts doing its thing while you’re doing your thing, is it likely to take a piece off of you?
      If yes, then you need authority to do the LoTo on it.

      Does you machine have a LoTo tag on it?
      If yes, someone has their head up in it and if you turn it on, many people are going to be not happy with you.

      If your machine has a LoTo tag on it, and you have no idea where the LoTo tag owner is, go find the factory hygienist to figure out what’s up. Its their problem now!

      It works pretty well, and keeping it simple enough anyone can get it keeps misunderstandings to a minimum. On the other hand, we do work with things that can ruin yours, and everyone around you’s days quite thoroughly, before you’ve even realized something’s wrong.

        1. A reality that is ignored by too many. There’s also perception vs reality- most blacks in the USA believe that blacks are in the majority- because they live in minority- majority cities. (and from what I’ve read here- most Europeans think the same thing because of American television and movies… they probably also think we have a lot of really intelligent black doctors…) Odds are those well organized black militias believe the same thing. Most big city people, black, white, Asian, whatever, never venture outside big cities, even when they travel. They travel by air from one hub to another. Or by interstate highways never stopping in all the little towns. Small town people have usually at least travelled to medium size cities, for some things are there that the middles of nowhere don’t have. Anything the middles or nowhere have- like food and milk- is shipped to the cities.

          A few days after they start- the black population of the US will go down from 12% to less than 10%. Over the following weeks as electricity, water, and food are cut off, it will be cut by well more than half. He Who Must Not Be Named is a strong believer that in the next civil war your skin color will be your uniform…. I think the black Mennonites in our area are safe- no one sees Mennonites as a threat. Yes, there are black Mennonites- not many, but they exist. Haven’t seen any black Amish yet…

          1. I read a comment someplace years ago about this by a retired Army SGT(?). He had to take a squad into the hinterlands of Washington state, (funeral duty I think?) and during the trip they were getting more and more upset, wanting to know what had happened to all the black people. The NCO had to explain a few facts of life to them, including that rural eastern Washington state never had a lot of blacks. So it wasn’t like there had been any to have anything happen to them. He wasn’t sure he truly convinced all of them that there hadn’t been some nefarious purge.

              1. Thanks! I had absolutely no idea where I had read it, or the exact details, just that these poor kids really thought they were a majority throughout the entire country, not just certain cities and regions.

                1. I can see that perception from advertising, especially TV. The rare white couple is the designated clueless one, with The Wise Black Family knowing the proper technique/product to use.

                  I try to watch as little TV as possible. Since most of the shows I liked have finished their runs (I already miss Last Man Standing), it’s easier to skip broadcast TV than ever.

                  1. We don’t have TV, not really.

                    We have streaming– there’s like one thing the kids watch, I think it’s PBS adjacent, that is actually (gasp) not on demand! It quite flusters them.

                    Other than that, it’s anime, movies, Netflix stuff like The Witcher, Amazon stuff like…uh, the doki doki pseudo anime that the girls adore (80s level girly pap but it’s spun sugar, no poison, OK).

                    1. $SPOUSE watches one or another of the better Fox (Business?) News shows, plus a bit of Tucker Carlson. Beyond that, it’s old game shows for her, including those with a very young Alex Trebek.

                      Since it’s summer, it’s only the Grand Ole Opry show on Saturdays, plus whichever Midsomer Murders the local PBS station shows.

                      OTOH, we’ve gone heavily into Brit Mystery CDs. We now have the first 8 seasons of Midsomer, 6 seasons of Vera, and all(?) of the Inspector Lewis episodes. Not a big fan of the Geraldine McEwan Miss Marples, (does every episode have to have lesbians grafted into the plot?), though the Julia McKenzie ones seem better. Still haven’t spent any money on those. OTOH, David Suchet’s Hercule Poirot grows on one…

                    2. >> “Here’s the first “Doki Doki pseudo-anime” transformation sequence:”

                      [blink]

                      Never show me that again.

                      Never show me anything LIKE that again.

                      I’ll have to fast for a week to get my blood sugar back down after watching that.

                    3. Hey, they’re YOUR kids! Why should *I* have to suffer? 😛

                      But speaking of the 80s, I came across another video recently you might find worth adding to your link collection. You probably don’t want to show this one to your younger kids, though:

                      I can’t help but think there’s a weird-but-awesome video game to be made out of this concept.

            1. There are also stories of black sailors who took shore leave in darkest Africa, thinking they were gonna find their Wakandan brothers and prove the superiority of life in Africa…. and returned to the ship thoroughly chastened and far more appreciative of Western civilization.

              1. I think somewhere, anywhere, in Africa should be a multiday port call for every deployment as an educational experience. And- even those on restriction should get a day of liberty to experience it.

                I also think the Navy’s smaller vessels ought make a lot more port calls in out of the way rarely visited ports both for the educational experience- and to take a LOT of close up pictures of facilities…

            2. Which is kind of amusing because when I served my mission – in Eastern Washington (and the pan handle of Idaho) – some of my fellow missionaries (particularly from Utah) had seen more black people since they’d arrived in the mission than they had in their entire life up until they’d become missionaries.

              1. Which is why Democratic Party media concocted the term “white Hispanic” so that they can demonize Hispanics that don’t follow their mandated narrative or are involved in an incident with another “oppressed” group that is deemed more worthy than them. This is what you get with a system designed to judge people by racial identity group.

                  1. IE, “act civilized.”

                    It is freaking SCARY how much of the …. low grade fertilizer… these guys say makes sense if you start at the like Victorian level of “that’s mighty white of you” type framework, where “white” means roughly like 1960s “awful Christian of you.”

                    And yes, I am using “Christian” as a suitable stand-in for “civilized” because it is functional. All the non-predator agnostics and atheists I know in person at the very least recognize that the philosophy-pattern is a healthy one.

                    1. I’m not one of your in-person acquaintances, but otherwise you can add me to that list. I’d rather deal with Christians who take take the commandments against theft and murder seriously than with fellow atheists who feel entitled to bash my skull and take my wallet.

                    2. *nod* You don’t have to think someone is RIGHT to go “well, their philosophy is functional in general society, and would not be objectionable in a neighbor.”

                1. Thanks; I just noticed it when I checked the link before pasting it. Figured the date in the link would make my point until I had a chance to search the archive.

              2. Yeah. His foreign paymasters suck at understanding the US. Not strange, as they’re a closed-off and xenophobic breed.
                Hispanics are way more racist than white Americans.
                Also, as a note, and as someone whose family trends darker than Obama: They’d be HIGHLY offended if you called them anything but white.

                  1. Some of it may be that the people with full Spanish/Portuguese blood in Latin America often thought of themselves as Spanish/Portuguese (not as Mexican, etc).

                    Of course, those sorts “look” white not Indian Brown or African Black.

                    Thus those sorts aren’t “True” Hispanic (in the minds of such idiots).

                    Note, one of my Great-Aunts (by marriage) was old California Stock and Always Called Herself Spanish not Mexican.

                    Second note, at one job in Colorado I met this woman who I’d have never considered her as Mexican-American except for the fact that she claimed to be Mexican-American. She IMO was somewhat bigoted Against “Anglo-Americans” and claimed “solidarity” with “Brown” Mexican-Americans. Oh, yes she assumed that “we” would bigoted against her as a “Mexican-American”. I disliked liked her because of HER bigotry.

                    1. I grew up around Spanish families that grudgingly accepted the two flavors of Basque, but violently rejected Mexicans.

                      Far NorCal.

                      I didn’t realize it was odd, because I grew up watching Zorro so of course there were Spanish folks who were totally not Mexican in California…..

                    2. I disliked liked her because of HER bigotry.

                      And here you find the root of a lot of “abuse” in the modern day.

                      If you don’t *let* someone abuse you, when they feel entitled, then you’re a “bigot.” Or any other hammer that’s handy.

          2. That’s about how I see it. It’s going to get ugly, but that will vary by environment. The real divide is going to be starving urbanites vs everyone beyond the roadblocks. Blacks who think their skin is their uniform, and act accordingly, will die (and that’s mostly urban blacks who believe they’re the majority, because locally, they are). Blacks who think the flag is their uniform, and act accordingly, will not. Mainly because whites are the least genocidal people on Earth, and will accept Others fighting on our own side.

            But in majority Hispanic areas, where your language is your uniform, there’s already permanent animosity, and once it starts, soon there won’t be any blacks left alive. However, unlike blacks, they’re unlikely to go rampaging outside their own enclaves. (I can’t remember ever hearing of Hispanics looting en masse just because they can. Conversely, witness South Africa this past week. What they plan to eat next week remains to be seen, but the fear is it’ll come from raiding private homes, so everyone can enjoy Farm Murder Syndrome.)

            Some people cannot remain civilized unless they’re made to be, by people who have less trouble remaining civilized. When the majority are the former, then you’re in real trouble.

            When confronted with a rabid dog, we shoot the rabid dog and vaccinate the other dogs. But that only works when you can reliably distinguish the safe from the unsafe. Hence when most peoples are confronted with a rabid dog, they respond by shooting ALL the dogs.

            And sometimes that’s the right response, because they’re actually wolves, and otherwise you’re lunch.

        2. That won’t work too well in Southern California, given that blacks are not the “majority minority” in most neighborhoods.

              1. Lots of things are a lot better on our side. More and more it’s becoming less R vs D than sane vs. the horde confederation of the vile, the insane, the dumb, and the hostages to fortune (either knowing or clueless).

              2. Indeed. Remember that Cracked editorial from late 2016 which purported to explain the rural Trump voter to the urban Democrat from the perspective of someone who was born in a small town but moved to the city?

                There was a bit in there where he explained that the rural types had all the respect in the world for the black family down the road, who worked hard on their farm or their business and went to church, but had nothing but contempt for the city blacks with their violence/drugs/crime and misogynist music and generally dysfunctional culture.

                This was somehow supposed to show that the rural whites were well-meaning but still racists, but I think it didn’t teach the intended lesson, at least to anyone not already predisposed to think all rural whites were racist anyway.

                My grandmother, born in Arkansas in 1906 and moved to California in 1944, once told me how back in the flyspeck towns in Arkansas and Oklahoma they lived in, she had way more respect for the “colored folks” who worked hard and tried to better themselves than she did for the lazy, drunk, and criminal “poor white trash” (her words).

                    1. Indeed. It’s the attitude I was raised with and hold today, as do many of my neighbors (of several different colors). The attitude is shared by many, rich or poor, who are perspicacious enough to see when one’s character is good, and when it’s rooted in laziness and spite.

                      And quite frankly it is the only answer left after Occam’s Razor cuts away the dross. Race is a fiction. I mean that as it is currently used today. Humans have varying phenotypes, none of which qualify to make us more or less human. Culture matters, but the ultimate end is the primacy of the individual.

                      The current crop of racist wannabes do not and cannot see that. The end of intersectionality is and always will be the rights and responsibilities of the individual. I just wish they’d hurry up and get there and skip all the woke crap that’s nothing but sand in the gears.

              3. One can fervently hope that Larry Elder wins the California governor election (presuming Gavin the Idiot gets ejected) as there’s no one better at whacking stupid black heads together and telling ’em knock it off, pull your pants up, get a job, and if you’re gonna make kids, get married first, instead of whining about oppression and glorifying welfare and gang-bangers. Not to mention whacking stupid white leftard heads together with cold hard facts. Whether Larry can manage to be anything but a gadfly in the face of the veto-proof Dem supermajority, well, not likely, but his loud and persistent example where all the stupid people can’t miss it — that can’t help but be a positive.

                And might convince a few more of the smarter blacks which side they need to be on, if they want to survive what the dumb blacks are trying to make inevitable.

                1. As much as I’d like to see him in Sacramento, he’d operate purely as a public spokesman. Unfortunately, the Democrats have super-majorities in both legislative houses in California.

                  1. Yep. But he’s got a long history of being the fearless guy who stands up and says, “Oh yeah? Show me how *that* works.” So he won’t accomplish a thing in government (other than occasionally inconveniencing the state legislature) but as the guy yelling YOU ARE NOT ALONE (and sometimes GROW UP!) to regular Californians… that may have more value than anything he could do against the machine.

      1. Actually- I think the whole Democrat pushed CRT plan is long term planning on their part to finally be able to get rid of blacks by letting the OTHER side eliminate them for them. It says exactly the same thing the KKK did and the segregationists and slavery supporters have said- blacks cannot compete with whites on an equal playing field. They’re not good enough.

        1. That would explain Margaret Sanger, too. Only if it were true, why are we subsidizing them to breed?

          1. We weren’t at the time, I don’t think. And then the Ds realized they could get permanent votes and PP realized how much money they made off of it. And without pregnancies, they won’t get paid for the abortions.

            I’m feeling cynical tonight. Or maybe just less rosy spectacles than usual. It seems lately that whenever you can find a benefit to the Dems, the Commies, and their apparatchiks, the issue they are benefiting from is one of their actual planning rather than just taking advantage of happenstance.

            1. On Air Force One, President Johnson was discussing his proposed civil rights bill with two governors. Explaining why it was so important to him, MacMillan remembers that LBJ said it was simple: “I’ll have them ni**ers voting Democratic for two hundred years.”

              — Ronald Kessler, THE FIRST FAMILY DETAIL

        2. “- I think the whole Democrat pushed CRT plan is long term planning on their part to finally be able to get rid of blacks by letting the OTHER side eliminate them for them.”

          In my darker moments I have speculated this, but then I remind myself I’m giving the left way too much credit, they’re like the ghosts in Korean mythology, toxic to the living no matter what their intentions. (In one story I read a recently deceased grandmother reaches out to pat her newborn grandchild with nothing but love and affection, only to have her touch cause it to wither and die.) The left’s feelings for one racial group or another might be genuine, but it will still hurt them even worse than racists that hate them vehemently.

          1. Yeah, these are deeply crazy people, many quite destructive in everything they do.

            Rational actor models are not really all that reliable an analytical tool for figuring out what they are /really/ trying to do.

                1. Didn’t Orvan predict apocalyptic things if Bob starts making sense at a rate greater than once per day?

                  Your fear might be well-founded.

        3. On the other hand, remember that Manson also wanted to start a race war (albeit one triggered by mis-placed white anger aimed at blacks due to the atrocities that Manson and his followers had would would commit). And in his delusions, he thought that the blacks would call on him to lead them.

        1. I don’t remember who it was, might have been Walter Russell Meade, who around the time of the Syrian civil war kickoff noted that in a multi-tribal country, the only stable state in which a minority can exist is if it brutally oppresses the majority. If they don’t, they get genocided, so eventually the majority will run through each minority until it gets to the one that is tough and organized enough to stop them, and then you’re back to the stable state again. (Metastable, maybe.)

          South Africa has a whole bunch of tribes, but as long as the Afrikaners were in the “oppressor minority” position the various blacks hung together as a majority. (More or less: I recall in the ’80s occasional ructions between the Zulus and Xhosa, but they still hated the Afrikaners more.) The forlorn hope, I think, was the Afrikaners hoping the blacks had absorbed enough South-African-ness to not act like tribes when apartheid was abolished. They lost the bet.

          1. Thing is, the Afrikaans seem to have effectively supplanted the English for that ‘central tribe’ slot. And while the English can be assigned parts of the blame, apartheid itself may have played a role in ensuring an unproductive outcome.

            Some can be blamed on communists, and anti-colonialism, but colonialism doesn’t seem to have ever been profitable compared to a semi-modern first world economy.

            These days I tend to classify it as a foreign policy problem of the sort that I do not have to have a real theoretical answer for.

          2. Also – according to one string of Twitter posts that went up a few days ago from someone apparently living in the country – each ANC government administration since Mandela (and the ANC always wins the elections) has pushed more and stronger communist policies, always claiming that the new policies will fix the economic problems that exist largely as a result of the communist policies introduced by the previous post-Mandela administrations (according to the person putting up the posts, Mandela himself largely supported free markets when he was in charge).

        2. Likely, *they* don’t see themselves as black, other than “not-white.” They look around, they see Xhosa and Sotho and Swasi and Ndbele and unknowns who are probably illegals from the north. Not-us, from way, way back. That’s how “tribal” works.

    1. South Africa is not a result of Critical Race Theory.

      South Africa had some fundamental issues /before/ the beginning of Apartheid.

      The same Afrikaans politicians who started Apartheid were keen to keep the English out of political power, until they realized that they could rule through a 5% white chunk of the population, if that 5% was internally feuding. Probably 5% is simply not enough, but it definitely was not enough without the complete buy in of the English.

      So, then they ended Apartheid, and tried to make sure it didn’t blow up immediately. Apartheid had an opportunity cost in terms of getting blacks invested in western culture.

      Cultural issues, well predating CRT, and maybe even predating critical theory, can explain recent events in South Africa.

      There are areas in America with a strong influence by African cultures. Thing is, those can not be the whole of the black population in America, because those are the recent resettlements of refugees, not the longer term populations.

      The longer term US black populations are a) essentially white conservative and b) an amoral culture similar to the white leftwing culture, excepting /only/ that the whites know that they would get killed if they pulled half of that. Only in the latter subculture is CRT an influence. And criminals are criminal, they hurt people because they like hurting people, not because they reasoned themselves into a hurting people position after reading a bunch of books. CRT is mainly an organizational manipulation tool.

      There is untapped black fighting power, but that fighting power is not readily available to support the rioting nutjobs.

      Carrying out mass murder is difficult. Killing the rioters is one thing. It is not going to become a race war to exterminate the blacks. Why? Because a small amount of determined, armed opposition massively increases the costs of mass murder, and it is not hard to make it so costly that it is impractical. To carry out a mass murder, you need a level of hatred that will pay the cost of carrying out the mass murder.

      Now, the white and black rioters have earned a certain amount of hatred. That hatred is enough to ‘fund’ killing those specific rioters and hoodlums. It is not anywhere near enough to ‘fund’ a general extermination of blacks, because extending the target list to lawful religiously conservative blacks means a) dealing with peaceable Americans who have been quietly expecting the possibility of trouble for years b) dealing with a certain amount of white police and military veterans, who have served along side black veterans, still know them, and do not believe that they or their families should be murdered. A stoner who never realized that robbery is a potentially fatal occupation is easily slain. A substantial number of otherwise peaceable Americans who recall the lessons of WWII is a considerably more costly proposition.

      Media are retards, and are playing stupid games with internal US perceptions. Fundamentally, Americans seriously weighing the costs and benefits of killing other Americans are going to want a basis that is a little more sound than ‘saw it on the tee vee’.

      The Critical Race Theorists are vicious morons, and many do seem to really want a race war. Partly, that is innumeracy on their part, not really considering the ways it could go very badly. They are saying some very ugly things to whites, encouraging people to do ugly things to whites. It turns out, however, that they are also morons when it comes to trying to incite race war.

      White Americans buy the argument that black Americans should have a better security situation. This is because white Americans have so wonderful a security situation, that they have no grudges, and think everyone should have a good security situation. What happens if the critical race theorists make the security situation suck for whites? They stop listening to the critical race theorists well before they start hating blacks enough to cover the cost of a mass murder. If people stop listening to CRT, reverse criminal justice reform, and start hanging druggies, boom, the security situation improves.

      1. This meets with my assessment of the situation as well. It also heavily implies that there are agents who emphatically do NOT want the general security situation of black Americans to improve, and see some benefit in the continued chaos. And I don’t mean the ones actually out there throwing bricks at cops, looting stores, and shooting other black Americans.

        As you said, enforce the laws actually on the books and the security situation improves.

        There isn’t really a good endgame for the progressive left, and never has been. But they can still do a lot of damage on the way out.

        1. CRT advocates include people who want the security situation to suck for everyone. Possibly there are CRT advocates who are not angry and insane to that degree, but they aren’t the ones calling the shot.

          The folks CRT brands as white supremacist include those who want the security situation to be good for everyone.

          ‘Enforce the actual laws’ is definitely one of the happy paths. Might be interesting to find out how screwed up the formal legal system has been.

          There’s much possibility for bad things to happen.

          My feeling is that the people they have staffing the race war option have made race war unsustainable by so misreading the real situation, and the actual possibilities.

          Maybe we can sustain a different state of warfare, I’m not sure about all of those. But if they misplay their information warfare ground game in general as badly as they’ve played it with race war, we may have very little killing, and only years and years of hard feelings.

          (I think there are a lot of people who won’t be forgetting what they’ve seen behind the masks.)

          1. It is extremely unlikely that the US will ever get to a race war.

            The Ruling Class is using BLAMTIFA and KenDiAngelonianism to disrupt the despised middle classes, presumably the better to continue looting the wealth of the country. The moment the rioters, black militias, etc., forget their role and start threatening the Ruling Class, their funding will disappear, and if they continue anyway they will get squashed like the bugs they are.

          2. “‘Enforce the actual laws’ is definitely one of the happy paths. Might be interesting to find out how screwed up the formal legal system has been.”

            Something like 95% of felony cases never go to trial in the U.S., but end in plea bargains.No jury of your peers, just ‘an offer you cannot refuse.’ Shows that there are far too many felonies on the books, as well as a surfeit of charge stacking that makes the pleas more palatable.

            1. No jury of your peers, just ‘an offer you cannot refuse.’

              You are entirely able to refuse a plea bargain.

              People take them because they believe that a jury of their peers will find them guilty as sin.

              1. “People take them because they believe that a jury of their peers will find them guilty as sin.”

                Assertion without evidence.

                1. Doesn’t have to be false: consider that juries ruthlessly select for the stupidest and most gullible members, and that prosecutors are almost universally lying scum.

                  So even the most innocent person who could ever live would still have cause to fear.

                  1. One of my sons served on a local grand jury. The prosecutor got a lot fewer indictments from that particular grand jury- and a lot higher conviction rate. Grand jurors ARE free to get information from other sources. One case the prosecutor thought was a slam dunk, one of the jurors told him “Everyone in town, and lots of people in the county, know that that cop is a piece of s–t. No one here believed him, do you think a regular jury will?”

                    When I was called for jury duty I wasn’t one of the original 18- and they got their jurors from that pool. One of the questions was “Do you know anyone who has been convicted of DWI?” Uh, I was in the Navy for 21 years…. What do you think? And does 15 times for my brother in law count? The 15th finally netted him jail time.

                    1. Finally got summons for jury duty, but wasn’t called in (“call this number night before date” kind). But co-worker got summons and then got picked for jury. Got halfway through then a new witness was announced. His step-brother, whom he hadn’t seen in decades, for reasons, but no matter. Reported this to bailiff. Neither the prosecutor nor the judge were happy. Not his fault. He followed the rules. After he left they were out of alternates.

                  2. I finally got to be on a jury last fall, the first week they’d opened up the county Superior Court. From the times I’ve been through jury selection before, they were not being as relentlessly picky as usual, because they were already dealing with a smaller pool of potentials (a lot of people had kicked their service down the road due to COVID fears.)

                    We actually voted guilty on the main charge, even in light of the optics, because we were able to persuade the two holdouts that there was no way that the stabbing was defensive, given the video evidence. (It was, shall we say, very racially charged in its description. But also note that prior to any charges, the suspect had been harassing a woman—and all of the women on the jury were in favor of conviction from the start.)

                    1. I’ve been on two juries in the last seven or eight years.

                      The first really ought to have pled out, it was so obvious. A woman got in a catfight over a man at a nightclub and got thrown out. She saw the other woman exiting with the man, followed them around to the front of the building, and assaulted the woman right in front of a cop. Her “defense” was that she was still so emotionally agitated from the initial fight that she wasn’t in her right mind. I was the foreman since I was sitting next to the door when the clerk delivered the instructions to the jury room, and it literally took us no longer to deliver a verdict than it did to fill out the paperwork.

                      The second was a total BS case where the prosecutors were obviously frustrated in nailing these two club promoters on drug charges, so they went with a completely bogus assault charge instead. Except the “victim”, who was the primary witness at trial, was stipulated to be a pathological liar. He said that after a night out with the two defendants where they took lots of X (and he pretended to be a British DJ all night) he went back to his hotel with one of the defendants’ girlfriends and had sex with her. The defendants showed up at the room (she placed them there in her testimony but then left immediately), and the victim said they beat him up, maybe over the girl, maybe over taking all their drugs and not paying, maybe over lying that he could help them promote events in the UK. Except that they weren’t there long enough, the layout of the bedroom would have made it nearly impossible to hit him where and how he said it happened, and his injury was completely consonant with slipping in the shower and bashing his face on the faucet (and the cops somehow did not examine the bathroom) and then bleeding all over his pillow before he got the idea to blame it on the two guys. We got dismissed after the prosecution’s case; I’m pretty sure on a motion for a directed verdict. Look, the two guys were clearly drug dealers, but the case was crap.

                2. From personal experience, the guys that take plea bargains are the ones that are shown the evidence the police have on their crimes. Of course, I have also had guys that refused the plea bargain, against the recommendation of their legal council, right up to the last second before trial and then expected us to offer it again. I have also had ones that are convinced they will come out of trial just fine, those are the guys who get slammed in sentencing.

                  As for physical evidence or links… You won’t find a site or report anywhere that says “Guy took plea bargain because we showed him this mountain of evidence.” You want that kind of info, you have to submit FOIA requests to the various state and fed attorney offices.

                  1. Yeah, but just from sitting in whatever the lowest possible court is called, watching people take plea bargains for something stupid like “breaking a window” when they’d in fact broken, entered and stolen stuff…. I wonder if we’re well served by plea bargain.
                    I mean, son was there for speeding — had excuse besides being first year behind the wheel that his speedometer didn’t work in rattle trap he was driving. That was …. remedied shortly after — which was plea bargained to broken tail light, but still….

                    1. IIRC, most “drug possession” jailings are pled down from dealing

                    2. Often with “attempted murder” where the victim doesn’t want to talk because “attempted murder” is easier to survive than “full murder.”

                    3. If there were more judges and similar resources, we might be able to get time to trial to something sane without them, which would remove opportunity for other funny business.

                      Which Trump was trying to do, on his side…. /sigh

                    4. Or fewer / simpler laws. There aren’t enough judges and courtrooms in the world to handle a “3 Felonies a Day” legal system.

                    5. When even friendly folks have to admit that the “three felonies a day” guy was playing loose with how likely it was for a normal person to, as he claimed, commit three felonies a day in reasonable innocence – picking specific, and objective, goals would work better.

                    6. First I (or Glenn Reynolds, who cites that a lot) have heard of that admission.

                      And of course, the point isn’t that you actually DID it; the point is that neither you nor the jury understand the law enough to keep the government from being able to accuse uppity peasants of something and force you to pay for a defense. The process is the punishment.

              2. In most cities, with most D prosecutors (Kim Foxx), people take plea bargains because the prosecutor charges everything in sight that might apply or possibly be proven, and the courts often follow up on this by high-limit sentencing those who clog the system by seeking a trial.
                Note also that only the relatively well-off and the apparently poor can afford to take a criminal charge to trial. Attorneys are expensive unless you can get a volunteer or a public defender.
                John in Indy

              3. “People take them because they believe that a jury of their peers will find them guilty as sin.”

                Or because the trial will bankrupt them in a way that taking the plea bargain will not, or because the prosecutor is making illegal threats. See the case of Gen. Flynn, for example, as cited by several other people in this discussion. You’re probably right in a great many cases, but we’ve had enough examples of bad prosecutors lately that I think it’s pretty well proven that this isn’t always the case.

                1. There is a vast difference between “isn’t always the case” and “is absolutely never the case there is zero choice involved.”

                  1. So when you said “People take them because they believe that a jury of their peers will find them guilty as sin”, which one was it? Because the phrasing was open, and the way you’ve been arguing in this discussion, it sure sounds like you’re claiming “always” in the assertion I just quoted. If that’s not what you mean — if you’re just claiming that that often happens but that there are sometimes exceptions — then no wonder you and the others have been arguing past each other. Because I haven’t seen you acknowledge any exceptions yet.

                    1. Neither.

                      It was a response in keeping with the level of precision used in the comment it was directly responding to, which has for some unknown reason been selected to be minced even when those objecting admit that it is mostly accurate and they wish to add additional reasons that someone would choose to take a deal, or to object to related but not specifically relevant abuses.

              4. We’ve got prosecutors that won’t charge rioters, looters, arsonists and murderers — but throw the book at you for having a gun to defend yourself.
                ———————————
                If you call 9-1-1 and tell them that somebody with a gun is breaking into your house, they will send two cops in 10 or 15 minutes. If you tell them that somebody is breaking into your house and YOU have a gun, they will send 10 or 15 cops in two minutes.

          3. “‘Enforce the actual laws’ is definitely one of the happy paths. Might be interesting to find out how screwed up the formal legal system has been.”

            Enforce the actual laws EQUALLY. Like arresting the Jan 6 defendants for “insurrection” vs letting the Trump Inauguration rioters go.

            Or charging Gibson Guitars with using “illegal rosewood” while Martin Guitars used wood from the same import lot to make a guitar for the Obama White House. The difference: Gibson’s CEO refused too donate to Obama; Martin Guitars paid the bribe.

            The so-called “legal system” has been screwed, blued and tattooed for decades.

      2. > Fundamentally, Americans seriously weighing the costs and benefits of killing other Americans are going to want a basis that is a little more sound than ‘saw it on the tee vee’.
        —-
        I don’t know, Bob. I know too many educated, otherwise intelligent people who float in Orwell’s eternal present, parroting whatever the TV and Faceborg are saying that week. Even if they had second thoughts, they’d still be voicing approval, rather than risking becoming not-of-the-body. If the goggly-box told them the “insurrectionists” and “Nazis” were being rounded up and sent to the gas chambers, they’d agree that it was the only logical thing to do. They might be sad, because they think of themselves as good people, but they’d never think of going against the Narrative.

        The ones who might give such orders… they order, people obey. They don’t perceive any personal risk; they think “violence” is someone disagreeing with them. They live in almost a separate reality of positive feedback from their cohort and the media; they’re right, because everyone in their universe agrees with them.

        1. I phrased it the way I did deliberately, and with forethought.

          The two groups you describe, the followers and the ‘wise’ ‘leaders’, are not seriously weighing the question.

          The followers are not accustomed to thinking much about such things.

          The behavior of the ‘decision makers’ is daydreams and tantrums. It is actually seriously overestimating them to describe them as assuming that the world is uncoupled, static, and motionless aside from the actions that they choose. A world where motion only occurs when willed can still exist in a vector space, a place where location obeys basic arithmetic. To continue the metaphor, these people do not even comprehend that multiplication and addition might exist with consistent properties. If you demonstrate calculations for them, they might assume that each is its own thing, and additionally ‘your truth’. Vector spaces, where you can add distances between points, or multiply velocities, etc., are too constraining for a metaphor for their thinking. They have no understanding of cost for benefit or consequence for action.

          The people who can be effective at violence somewhat correlate with those that seriously weigh it. There are too many different ways to do violence to chance on the most effective violence very often, unless you make careful study of it, or have been trained carefully in a system of violence that is informed by relevant experience and careful study. For a war with the apparent novelties of the boog, canned methods are unlikely to be most effective, hence the careful students may be favored.

          The people who listen only to the TV are unlikely to be proactive enough to matter.

          Okay, people who are habitually violent will act. I expect them to do so stupidly, and ineffectively, whether they act because of the TV, or because of a drug habit.

          The effective, thoughtful, proactive people may take TV, and the TV watchers into account, but I do not expect them to form intelligence estimates of who they must kill based on media nutjobbery.

          Suppose you have the ability to form a platoon or company to take care of some needed business, and suppose you anticipate winning the war. If you foresee winning, do you really want your actions reviewed after the war by your peer commanders, when you can only justify a choice based on some hollywood movies that you saw? Or would you prefer to only be justifying actions based on behavior that you actually observe in the real world?

          There are too many potential targets that are actually misbehaving to worry about also servicing the targets that only might be misbehaving from what abstract misrepresentations say. The same mixing that keeps separation from being viable also means that everyone who wants can access targets that really have earned justice.

  16. It’s a bit hard to do a white strike when they control the media.

    For example I suspect 99.99% of the US truckers would be delighted to apply each and every rule to D. C. deliveries.

    Maybe <5% read Acc't'Hoyt.

    I'd bet even money at least 40% spend time on farcebook and share their views with another 40%.

    In my opinion farcebook is doing shadow banning. I tried to post this link; https://pjmedia.com/instapundit/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/Screen-Shot-2021-07-16-at-12.26.13-PM-600×487.png and got a 'something went wrong' notice, locking up my screen. I immediately followed with a 'test' post that flew thorough fine.

    This isn't the first time that's happened to me.

    BTW: post/link worked fine on mewe.

    Point: if you can't communicate, you can't do.

    1. I’d also posted that link, but had no problem.
      It may be a combination of who you are, AND the link. I’m not, apparently, threatening enough to present a challenge to FB.

      1. Hum, I tried reposing it a number of times yesterday and always got a something went wrong error message each time even though other postings I’d make, in between trying to post that, went through OK. I tried just now, today, posting it on farcebook and it went up OK. Curious strange.

  17. Just yesterday, I asked a senior why she was wearing a mask when she had had the vaccine? She said, but the new vaccine D is coming. I should have said “So the vaccine doesn’t work?”… Instead I told her I wouldn’t wear a mask except in a doctor’s office. The funny thing was she was wearing a mask all right — under her chin.

      1. Virtue signaling has crossed the line from virtual to visual. Makes it easier to spot ’em in the wild. Not all of them have the multiple piercings, rainbow hair, and permanent RBF that characterizes the Twatter breed.

      2. Oregon requires masks or shields at medical offices, and at the retina specialist, I think it was full compliance. Elsewhere, if you aren’t shot with the not-vax, they’d really like it if you masked up. OTOH, Fred Meyer (Kroger) posted a sign saying they’d check vax-cards, but I’ve not seen a gateway checker since that piece of horse excrement was published.

        Rough guess, at Costco, maybe about 10% of the people were masked up. Not many kids at the store when I was there, but it’s more heavily weighted to female and 50ish and up. OTOH, lots of obstinate old men like me who don’t bother. The sad sight is when Mama has her little kid (5-6ish) masked up because reasons. I’ve resisted the urge to ask them uncomfortable questions. (“Are you taking drugs, or are you just stupid?”)

  18. Oh, I’m very good at malicious compliance. It’s what faculty do. And, yes, I’m going to cough on the vax hunters and then invite them in…

    The powers that be have no idea what they’re going to get when/if they start this door-to-door campaign. I think a LOT more people than they expect are going to start yanking their chain hard. They live in a world where the sky is pink with purple polka-dots. The expect that everybody will dutifully respond. And, I stand by my earlier argument that Xiden Administration is going to pawn this task off onto local do-gooder groups who will get to face the maliciously compliant citizens and then get thrown under the bus by the administration when the whole thing crashes and burns. It’s going to be epic.

  19. I know what I can do, I can say “fuck you, if you’re not going to fix this, and you’re not going to promote me to the position I am filling, I am retiring in October, good luck replacing my ass! And I have. Papers are in, we’ll see if I get a promotion, or if I walk and make more money retired than I am making going to work (yes, really)

  20. I believe the accepted anglophone term these days is “Malicious Compliance” (at least, that has a wikipedia entry).

    1. Darn it, I actually searched the page for “Malicious Compliance” before making my post, only to find without the search immediately after posting…

  21. Apologies if this has already been mentioned in comments, but in the Reddit world a zeal strike is commonly referred to as malicious compliance. There is an entire sub category of stories of how frustrated workers fed up with clueless management give them exactly and precisely what is stated in a contract or work description. It never ends well and often results in a department or an entire company grinding to a halt.
    As for teaching children to cook, early on we had a policy where each of our two boys was responsible for cooking dinner once a week. Helping at other times of course, but one meal a week was theirs to plan and prepare. Lots of dinners straight out of the Boy Scout cookbook. To be clear we would offer help if asked, but each boy had the duty and got the credit.
    There was that one time when oldest son took on breaded fried shrimp and unfortunately the recipe he was working from assumed that you started with peeled raw shrimp instead of the nice fresh ones in the peel we’d been provided. Interesting meal that. At least they did not still have their heads on.

  22. Ah yes, malicious compliance! Agree with Uncle Lar. They really don’t know that what they think of as a rheostat is actually and off/on switch for us.

  23. https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/BotheringByTheBook

    https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/CouldSayItBut

    “Alright, listen closely. [grabs notepad and pen] I’d like to help you [hands his client notepad and pen], but I can’t. I’d like to tell you to take a copy of your policy to Norma Wilcox on — [taps notepad urgently] Norma Wilcox, W-I-L-C-O-X — on the 3rd floor, but I can’t. I also do not advise you to fill out and file a WS-2475 form with our legal department on the 2nd floor. I would not expect someone to get back to you quickly to resolve the matter. I’d like to help. But there’s nothing I can do.”
    — Bob Parr, The Incredibles

  24. Off topic, but this is interesting.

    I just learned that J.D. Vance’s local Ohio venture capital firm is called “Narya Capital”.

    I can’t find any use of the word “Narya” other than as one of the Three Elven Rings wielded by Gandalf that had the power of inspiring hope and resistance to domination and tyranny.

    I’m liking him more and more, gotta say.

  25. You left out albinos. In my 11th-grade classes, there was a boy who had an MG-TF sports car (in white) and looked pinkish when standing in front of a whiteboard. I don’t think he was an albino, but he might have been.

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