Learning from History

Those who don’t learn from History are doomed to repeat it. Those who learn from history are doomed to scream like crazy people while being dragged along into the same old insanity by those who failed to learn.

Sure. Okay.

Of course you can learn from history, because humans are humans as far back as we can ascertain, and probably longer that. Some of the observations on Chimpanzees make me wonder how human they are, in the good and the bad. No, not us, but so many of the mechanisms are present that it makes me wonder about all those hominins and hominids and how close they were to us.

So, for instance, utopian regimes never work, because humans in general can’t “bend” to be good all the time. Nations or crowds can decide to do this or that, and “everyone will do this.” Only it never works that way. Any regime that needs “everybody to just” will not work. And history shows that over and over and over again, in tedious detail.

But there are more lessons from history, and our Founding Fathers used those to decide we’d be a democratic republic, and how it would be set up. Some of those lessons were from Greece and Rome, but some of the structures are from British history and common law.

However it is important to realize that history doesn’t repeat. It rhymes. And it’s important to study the differences, to see what will be the same, and what will be different.

You can’t say communism took over this and that and that, and therefore it will work here.

That’s mental. That’s like saying “I can throw stone balls from the roof and they’re fine, so I should be able to throw glass balls from the roof and they’ll be fine.”

So, let’s talk some lessons from history when it comes to totalitarian take over, shall we?

First, there seems to be a hard limit on the kind of crazy Marxist regime that the idiot left wants to impose here. The hard limit is due to the fact that it can’t feed itself. Or do much of anything for itself. That’s why Marxist regimes turn military and invade everything. (Something Putin is trying to repeat, because he’s still a Marxist.)

Invading nearby more prosperous lands allows the regime to give goodies to its followers and the people who do its dirty work. But it also allows an illusion of increased prosperity which the regime needs to go on.

(I always found it funny that the soviets called us imperialist, when in fact they needed their empire to just keep going.)

How long can a communist/socialist/Marxist regime to keep going?

We don’t know. History doesn’t tell us that, because frankly the only way the bad regimes have survived is with help from other places. Mostly, alas from us. We propped up the entire cold war, to avoid a nuclear confrontation which might never have been a thing if we hadn’t propped them up.

And Venezuela is being propped up by the Junta refusing to mine oil locally. Ditto Russia, to an extent.

North Korea depends on China.

China, well, we propped up that too, which is why they thought it was worth it taking our presidency.

Look, we can learn from history, but we have to remember where we are right now.

And right now… It’s not a good time for collectivism. Heck, it’s not a good time for statism. It’s not a good time for center-out regimes.

And the bright idea China had of buying itself an American President (so called) is also a fine example of not learning from history, but to the whispers of their most insane rulers, the ones who mainlined lead and killed all the grandmothers who told stories. Because they don’t even realize we prop them up. (Consider nationalism and racism (yeah, they are racists, why?) And so they think they can take us down and be the sole power in the world.

It doesn’t work that way. I guess they can delude themselves about it a little while, like they can convince themselves that their bright and shiny African colonization schemes work. (In reality, Africa is already winning. Africa always wins. Not its people. But Africa does.)

Because if they do manage to take over the US, even for a year — bet you they won’t. And no, don’t be stupid. They’ve taken over the US administratively, but if you don’t live in one of the super blue areas, you know snooks are being cocked at their instructions. left and right pretty much — everything they have and have built everywhere else will collapse hard.

Even with the half-rule of the demi-president, which most of us are somewhere between growling at and ignoring, the world is already shaking. Because it can’t work without a mostly free America.

If America can’t feed itself, no one can feed America. Sure, we could conquer the entire clown car of them, but they wouldn’t keep us going for a week.

So– History. But here it’s different. Mostly because America is always different. And I could tell you why, but that’s a whole other post.

The other portion of history to take into account is that we’re not close to falling to the leftist bullshit. If you think we’ve already fallen, you’re a lot like them and think the wraper is the present, and would eat cat poop in a candy wrapper. They’ve taken over the institutions, the government, and a lot of our “structure.” That’s bad because we actually need some of those things. I guess we’ll find out which we need because they are actually not working at all. which is par for the course for anything the left takes over, of course.

Most of what we’re seeing is the structure flailing around trying to get something that makes the country believe in collectivism again.

And that’s the thing: We were closer to believing in top down and center out and collectivism a hundred years ago than we are now.

We really believed it in the fifties. To some extent the sixties started as a rebellion against that, but the USSR had its propaganda ore in, and it all went South and became about collectivism and drugs, and the US not being good, and–.

But the propaganda is busted. the last four years really revealed what’s in the heart of the collectivists. (They don’t like us very much.)

And unlike 100 years ago, there isn’t only easily controlled media to convey the easily controlled message.

Yes, I know they’re trying. It’s not working. It’s not working in Europe, where they control the message a lot harder.

China seems to be committing suicide city by city till you wonder if that’s what a civil war now looks like, there.

Russia… well, I’m sure Putin thinks it’s a super power.

All of these “they’re more organized than us, they’ll do better” are … not.

There’s only us. And where we’re going the collectivists can’t even imagine.

They’re going to break a bunch of things, and some of them we’ll need to rebuild. I guess we’re doing one of those “get rid of everything in your house. Now bring in only what you need” clean ups.

Right now we’re learning that a lot of the history we studied was wrong. A just-so story created by collectivists to try get their way.

So it’s dangerous to believe those books. If you’re going to read history go to original sources.

And then keep going.

Because you can learn from history, but unlike my joke quotes in the opening, you’re not condemned into ANYTHING. History doesn’t really repeat. (Unless you’re in China, apparently, but that might be a matter of the history we think we know.)

The future is unwritten. It’s up to you to write it.

And to me. And to all of us.

And I’m laying down my marker on “It’s going to suck for a little while, but then it’s going to be amazing.”

Let’s make it amazing.

236 thoughts on “Learning from History

  1. Russia’s not really invading to feed itself and its people directly by pillaging Ukraine, so much as it is to prevent a competitor from sprouting up. Ukraine was gearing up to take a chunk out of Russia’s oil and gas revenue by investing in their own infrastructure and then selling to Europe. This happened shortly after a pro-Europe president took over. Not long after that, Russia invaded 2/3rds of Ukraine’s oil and gas regions and confiscated all of the oil rigs that had been built in the black sea. (1/3rd is in the black sea, and 1/3rd is in the Donbas, the remaining 1/3rd is in the west, near Transnistra, which means it’s also under threat by Russian separatists in Moldova.) Since Oil sales to Europe are the only thing really propping the Russian military and kleptocracy up, it was imperative that they prevent competitors diluting those sales at lower prices, like you would be able to from Ukraine’s deposits. Another threat to that is the pipelines being built from Azerbaijan, through Georgia, Turkey, and Greece, to Italy, which is part of why we had another Armenia and Azerbaijan war in the last year as well.

  2. I must admit, the view from here in east Tennessee is looking pretty good. Larger and larger portions of the rest of the country seem to be embracing the old hillbilly gestalt of “leave me alone; it’s none of your business what I do.” And not just embracing it, but actualizing it.

  3. Apparently a problem with convincing people to “ignore their lying eyes” is they’ll eventually run with it on their own.

    If the bill of sale is what matters to you and not the content, then soon even your best workers are going to be delivering meticulously crafted slips of paper and properly formatted metrics, instead of actual usable, saleable, product.

    1. I see this all the time in software development. Developers do not ask if their code achieves its purpose but rather does it meet the specification.

      1. The reason Systems Engineering supposedly exists is to translate purpose into specification. As a hardware engineer for 40+ years the Reader laughs hysterically at that notion. I’m sure most good software developers have the same reaction.

        1. most good software developers have the same reaction.

          Personally? Not so much. OTOH my specification to delivery/maintenance software, my entire 33 years were very focused on purpose and usability. Until the last 12 years I had full control. Even the those last 12 years I had full control on how tickets were solved, which included deep analytic dives on root causes, and fixing what was found, no matter how long it took. One thing I despised was having to repeatably go into software to correct a correction. Lord help my patience when there was a client that went “But I really meant this … and when it rains on Tuesday …” (and yes there were a few, mostly when the end user wasn’t directly involved and client went with an IT or department head intermediary “expert”).

          “I don’t care if it’s crap as long as it’s Tuesday.” As long as the ticket can be closed, root cause analysis is often not performed.

          I wouldn’t have lasted through the first 6 months of a shop that pulled this mess. Tracking down the root cause and solving the problem was the fun and my job. There was a reason that my answer to “How long this will take?” was “Probably a minute after I track down the problem. Now ask me how long it will take to track down the problem?” Or latter half could be “How long do you think it will take for your IT to upload the current data so I can track down the problem?” Yes. Snapshot of the live data causing the problem was often crucial to root cause (did not mean data or setup was wrong, just something not accounted for by software). Note, second answer could be days or weeks. There was a reason a lot of departments eventually would beat into their IT to give the company direct access and upload privileges. Now understand “fixing” the root cause was not always a software change. Sometimes the “Fix” was changing the end user perspective of what was suppose to happen.

      2. That’s because their management typically takes the attitude “I don’t care if it’s crap as long as it’s Tuesday.” As long as the ticket can be closed, root cause analysis is often not performed.

      3. Well, in theory, there was supposed to be an earlier step: Does the spec meet the purpose? And before that: is this purpose actually useful to anyone?

        Requirements can be quite hard in a big complex thing.

        1. Requirements can be quite hard in a big complex thing.

          Wags hands. I’ve always kept it to the KISS principle:

          1) What has to come out of it?
          2) What is there to go into it?
          3) How does whatever get into it? What are the technical challenges?
          * Add “and why?” to 1 – 3.
          4) How does 2 and 3 get to 1. (Usual notation has “magic occurs here”).
          5) Go to work.

          Process has never failed me regardless of how small or how huge step 4 and 5 were.

      1. Yup I’ve seen schedules tweaked, Earned value management numbers twiddled, Agile measures (velocity) played with. The basic rule of life is what you reward you get more of. If you reward precise values of measurements you all of a sudden miraculously get the values you asked for. This is what happens when you mistake the map (the various measures) for the terrain (the actual results). It’s particularly bad when the requested values are imposed from the top e.g when you require earned value to be 1.0 +- .05 . Lets be honest NO software project since the beginning of Von Neumann architectures has been within 5% of on time. 50% is darned good. But if managements raises (and in some cases continued employment as management) depend on it I promise you they will find a way to make the numbers happen… It’s sad things like EVMS and the agile metrics can give you a great feel for whats happening and where your issues are. Its just that managing to them is madness…

        1. I hate “metrics” total bloody waste of time and energy. The only thing I hate more than metrics are 360 degree feedback and performance appraisals.

          I had the good fortune to work in risk management on Wall Street where the people tend to be numerically competent. The night before the feedback forms and surveys had to be filled out, we’d take them on a booze cruise around Manhattan Island, buy a couple of boxes of good cigars, and then remind them, discretely, how the rating system worked, “If your say you’re not entirely satisfied, the group’s rating comes down and everyone gets paid less. Oh, and it’s competitive, if we have the highest rating on employee satisfaction we get paid even more. Do you understand?” My group was ranked number one in the firm for employee satisfaction every year I was there. Bloody useless as I said.

          I learned a lot from Peter Drucker but management by objectives shows that everyone can have a bad day.

      2. Heisenberg was an optimist.

        People who bemoan “teaching to the test” always irritate me. If the test is a good one then “teaching to the test” is equivalent to “teachers doing their actual job.” If the test isn’t a good one then the solution isn’t to get rid of the test, it’s to fix the damned test.

        1. Ah, but the teacher’s union wanted to emphasize the vital importance of teachers teaching “how to think, not what to think,” and besides they hated W.

          1. Basic test-taking strategies, like skipping questions you don’t know and coming back to them or taking short breaks between sections, don’t take that long to teach. If schools are spending more than a day on them then it’s either a poorly-designed test that can be gamed or it’s an example of people spending more effort to avoid doing a job. I could teach you how to factor polynomials in a week, but instead we’re going to spend three weeks going over test-taking strategies so I can blame your poor math skills on “teaching to the test.”

            1. At a certain level is became “here’s what the test writers are looking for. I know that’s not what [reality] says, just write what the grader wants to see.” Grrrrrrrrr.

                1. That also applies to industrial processes. Knowing the test (or process) is bad doesn’t solve the problem. When TPTB are invested in that test/process and know that changing it is equivalent to admitting they’ve been wrong, which is anathema to any bureaucrat, in industry, education or anywhere else, the test will not be changed. I’ve seen this sort of crap repeatedly in my career as an engineer and earlier as a design technician, and the best I ever saw happen was a cosmetic bandaid. The only thing that lets this sort of thing go on without multiple bankruptcies is the near-ubiquity; everyone (or nearly) is doing the same thing.

  4. Putin is not “adventuring”, he’s cleaning out his neighbor that has been completely taken over by the same evil consortium doing all this other dastardly shite we see globally. Ukraine had, has, what, 11-13 biolabs running and controlled by them. At this point, Putin is closer to a white hat than any of our assholes, thats for sure.
    Team Ukies cheerleaders led by soros, clinton, biden, WEF, et al; pretty easy to see what side to cheer on.

    1. Define “biolabs”. What, precisely, are they doing?

      Because technically, the lab that the doctor sends your blood tests to would fit the definition of a “biolab” depending on the definition you’re using. Saying that Ukraine as a dozen biolabs means absolutely nothing until you explain what, exactly, those biolabs are doing that’s supposedly nefarious. And back it up with citations, because I’m not willing to take your unvarnished word for it. Since you seem to be swallowing Putin’s propaganda hook, line, and sinker, I find your judgment suspect, and therefore you’ll need to present hard evidence if you want me to believe what you tell me those “biolabs” are doing.

      1. My understanding is the biolabs in the Ukraine were cold war leftovers that the US took over mostly to keep the various weapons researchers from getting hired by anyone who actually would use them.

        It’s apparently been an obscure but public part of the US budget for years, and existed because it was cheaper to pay them to pretend to work than pay for cleaning up the aftermath if they actually did any real work, at least until all of the old researchers aged out and retired, and they could safely burn them to the ground.

        These are not the mutant rage hamster folks. This is more the old farts who are probably watching things they shouldn’t on their work computers, but we’re going to ignore it because it’s better than having them do any real work, folks.

        1. Yup better they get paid to sit and twiddle their fingers then somebody with ill intent pay them to do something with smallpox, ebola, tularemia, bubonic plague etc which is what they did for the USSR and Russia (cold war end did NOT end Russian Bio war efforts look up Ken Alibek amongst others). Has it worked? Not clear, and we’ve encouraged our own folks with a little too much hubris to go to outside sources like China.

      2. i was gonna say… there’s a half dozen real, actual biolabs here in medium-sized east coast city

        1. Heck one of the Boston universities (BU I think) has a Bio Safety 4 lab for research.

          1. And possibly we should /not/ be trusting US universities with those.

            1. And you trust the CDC more? Even folks at USAMRIID (who should well and truly know better) have had stupid accidents (Check out Richard Pretons “The Hot Zone” for real fun please ignore the tv series).

              1. The best thing about having a space station will be moving all those labs there.

                1. Snelson I don’t know. Getting airflow and things with particulates right would be hard. And everything recycled makes life harder. Easier to seal and have UV B/C lights doing hard kills on outgoing airflow in a terrestrial lab.

                    1. That is true although large hunks of skylab made it to the ground, not clear if the temperatures in side that rose high enough to assure sterility. Main concern is can you keep the humans safe without Wildfire (c.f. Andromeda Strain) levels of protection (i,e, everything in a hot box handled with manipulators or a glove box). It actually isn’t too hard to do decent containment on the earth , the issue comes when you get sloppy/lazy handling the threats as humans almost always do.

              2. If disease is worth the crap engaged in ‘because of’ the common cold, then biolabs with ordinary pathogens are too dangerous to keep around. Basically, everything staffed through an American university, or by by AMA credentialed people, should be shut down, and destroyed.

                Universities and the feds are especially dangerous, but the AMA implies that this should also hold for all hospitals.

                Get rid of hospital access to biolabs, and of course standards of care will be massively impaired. But, those effers in public health imply that this would be a good trade off.


                ‘Common sense gun control’. Gun control is a statement of security trade offs wrt to the general population. Access to pathogens in biolabs is a security risk from a counter terrorism perspective. If a population within the US cannot be trusted to own firearms, then likewise they probably cannot be trusted with a biolab operating in their vicinity. Even if you employ the staff from outside that population, and bring them in outside, if it is in an area, the physical security can be compromised.

                1. There’s a certain appeal in giving bio-labs a certain amount of freedom to work on what they will, and holding them to the strictest safety standards.

                  “Don’t do anything involving human embryos or any part thereof. Don’t make chimeras. Don’t torture animals. Anything else, feel free.

                  But if anything ever escapes, no matter how small, we’re going to burn your lab to the ground along with everyone who works there.”

                  It probably wouldn’t be effective, but it would be festive for a while.

    2. There’s not much good evidence of Ukrainian biolabs doing weapons research that has been presented to semi-neutral parties. The anti-population crowd has plenty of resources in China and the US to brew their diseases and poisons. Maybe they can come out with something better than Money Pox next time.

      There is much more evidence that Ukraine was the corrupt land of Democratic Party slush funds, color revolutions, broken agreements and a whole slew of other evils. It was Western designed target that a corrupt Russia reacted to, so now millions of people are displaced and millions of more may die. Hopefully you bought Raytheon stock to take advantage of this opportunity…

      1. Also Ukraine had kicked off its corrupt government and the truth might come out. So the Russian invasion was EXACTLY like — and by the same people — who cheated in our elections in 2020. For the same purposes. Keep the Clintons/Obamas/Bidens riding high.

        1. Team HarrisBiden certainly did everything they could to goad Putin into actually invading, including openly inviting a “small incursion”.

          As I have noted, Team HarrisBiden wants Russia-Ukraine war to keep going and to expand in true Oceania fashion; i.e. as a mechanism to be used to go after domestic political opponents and to impose its radical domestic agenda like the Green Leap Forward under the pretext of a “war emergency”. People wouldn’t accept the Democrats’ efforts to use the CCP Virus as a reason to impose “WW2 style rationing” (recall they openly called for it) so now they are trying to create a large enough actual war in order to try to impose rationing.

          1. Within a few short months, the Biden* Regime publicly discussed they had offered NATO membership to Ukraine, mentioned that a small Russian incursion would be tolerated/accepted, and then made it clear to Ukraine that NATO membership was a actually a non-starter despite what the Biden* Regime had said in public a few months earlier. And then they sent Kamala Harris to help defuse the situation! Perhaps if they’d sent her to Moscow to publicly service Putin, it might have worked, but not what they did.

    3. You really should read some history. World history. The squabble-y kind.

      It is amazingly common for bad guys to support good guys or neutral guys, as long as something about the good guys torques off the bad guy’s enemies, or helps the bad guy fight against them — but very often, most often, the bad guy’s enemies are just other bad guys.

      All you can tell about the World Left’s support of Ukraine is that, somehow and somewhere, Ukraine not falling to Putin is useful to them.

      But it’s obviously not anything like being worried about the natural gas supply to Europe, because they’re helping Putin squeeze Europe. And since they’re working with Putin on that, and on the Iran negotiations, obviously they have nothing against Putin as Putin.

      One likely thing is that somewhere in Ukraine, somebody has some kind of evidence of various Bidens and other world leader kids being up to no good, and that it’s handy to bury the evidence in a pile of bodies. They don’t want either Russia or Ukraine to have it, and they do want lots of confusion stretching on and on, without either side definitively winning.

      But I’m sure there are other likely goals, and I just don’t know enough to know what they are.

      1. Given all the “meet Ukrainian women” websites, there may be lots and lots of blackmail material. Or just evidence of “simping” with large dollar amounts, possibly for women who don’t exist except as stock photos by models.

        1. I think it’s a bunch of different interests colliding in a stupid world version of a Fifty Xanatos Pile-up, if all of the Xanatoses were corrupt idiots.

          I think one faction are the gov’t corruption folks who used Ukraine as a money laundering house and really want it back up and running. They want the war over, and Ukraine to not lose.

          Another faction are the Intel Community folks who need something to do after the debacle in Afghanistan. They need something that justifies their existence, and opposing the evil Russian empire fits the bill. They just need an Officially Acceptable Opponent, so as long as Ukraine doesn’t lose, they’re covered.

          Then there are the countries that need Russian gas. They mostly just want to be eaten last, so they really need the war to end, but don’t really have a dog in the fight on who wins. I suspect this was the core of the faction that were ok with Putin breaking off the gas field portions of Ukraine, but really weren’t expecting him to take it as an invitation to take the whole thing.

          And I’m sure there are at least half a dozen other Western factions involved, all with conflicting and cross purpose goals. But a lot of them seem to either benefit from a continuing low intensity conflict or for cheerleading one, and only a few seem to actually benefit from Ukraine winning. Of those, the major players mostly seem to benefit from a UA win because it let’s them continue to be corrupt, so I’m not sure I’d rather them as terribly safe allies to have either.

          The whole thing is just one big stupid meds that’s probably not going to get any less stupid or messy.

          1. Good post and reasonable conjecture; thanks. But can I assume that “just one big stupid meds” was a subconscious reference to some recent event(s)? 😉

        1. True. The Failed Seminarian got a lot more out of being allied with the US and UK than he did from his alliance with the Failed Painter. We actually planned to uphold our end of the bargain.

      2. I kinda thought the whole war in Ukraine was about distracting Americans from the failures of the left in our own country. The left has a fantasy that the right are all crazy warmongers, and they think WW3 will distract them. The left are not getting the reaction they expected because Jacksonian Americans have caught on to the proxy war scam and Jacksonians like to win fights not be cannon fodder.

        It’s terrible that Russia has invaded Ukraine, Putin is not a good guy. With the current leadership in our military I think we would be looking at a boondoggle like Vietnam, so not sure how to help.

        1. It wouldn’t be a “boondoggle like Vietnam” simply because the military leadership in the ’60s, unlike what infests the Pentagram today, was fairly competent. “Bloodbath”, with US troops providing most of the blood, is probably more appropriate.

      3. “Nations don’t have friends, they have interests.”

        I’ll bet money that Biden was all set to sell Ukraine down the river until Poland and the Baltics (at least), who remember both Munich and what enslavement to Moscow is like, threw down an ultimatum that either NATO helped Ukraine or they were going to leave the alliance and sign a defense pact with Ukraine. Faced with the possible fracture of NATO and the subsequent need to fully fund their national defense, Germany, France, and Britain signed on. That embarrassed FICUS enough that they played along, however begrudgingly.

        1. I’m not sure Germany isn’t being more grudging than the Biden* Regime. The German government talks a pretty good game, but everything they say they’d send has more gotchas and delays than the public pronouncements might lead one to infer. Like retired mobile anti-aircraft systems they sent, that Ukraine can’t get much ammo for, because Germany doesn’t have much left in stock and the countries that produce the ammo are reluctant to offer end user certificates.

          1. Up until the fighting started, and going back to the Trump administration, Germany refused to let flights carrying weapons for Ukraine transit its airspace. Currently, while Germany attempts to get European consensus on an ’embargo’ on Russian oil, they continue to consume all the natural gas Russia sends across the Nord 1 pipeline. By late summer they will be looking for this to be over so no one freezes in the dark in Germany this winter. Given 3-4 more months of inflated fossil fuel prices filling the Russian treasury, the Reader expects the Russians to give Europe an ultimatum come September – stop the military support for Ukraine or go without natural gas this winter. We all know what the European (i.e. German) response will be. They won’t care if NATO fractures as a result.

    4. Rolls eyes. Putin is not adventuring. He’s trying to prop up his collapsing empire and re-live glory days.
      Neighbor taken over by evil…. reeee. Which is why he started threatening others right off the top.
      Sir, did you also use to work for the KGB to love the old horror so?

    5. Oh my fluffy bunnies.

      Ukraine had, has, what, 11-13 biolabs running and controlled by them.

      The University of Iowa has shopped around for bids to make a mobile bio-lab of a higher grade than most of the Ukraine’s. For the same reason, too– because if you’re serious about growing food, you need to be able to deal with basic pathogens that target food production.

      Putin is not “adventuring”, he’s cleaning out his neighbor that has been completely taken over by the same evil consortium doing all this other dastardly shite we see globally.

      Putin is getting smacked in the face with the fact that the Ukraine isn’t controlled by an evil consortium. Putin thought that since the Ukraine kicked out HIS evil consortium, they OBVIOUSLY must be controlled by a different one– he didn’t think of the obviously insane idea that hey, maybe people in the Ukraine are just people.

      They kicked out the mob boss that Putin’s hosting, OBVIOUSLY it must be because they’re replacing him with the same model in a different style, right?

      …which is why the Ukraine military hasn’t been crippled by looting itself. They’re still human, there’s still crime, but they’re not built around the government being organized crime.

      As opposed to Russia. Which, again, quite literally is hosting the mob boss, and has for years.

      Team Ukies cheerleaders led by soros, clinton, biden, WEF, et al; pretty easy to see what side to cheer on.

      Oh grow up, my twelve year old would get scolded for that level of “reasoning,” it is unbecoming in someone who is supposed to be an honorable elder.

      1. Yeah, we leave governments being organized crime to the likes of Vladimir Putin and Joe Biden*.

    6. Every university campus that does any research to speak of has a biolab. Multiples, usually, and at least one of them will be working with dangerous pathogens at some point. And just about every university in existence is controlled by the evil globo-leftists, or at least on board with the agenda.

      It might be more nefarious than that…or it might not. By itself, “Ukraine has a dozen western-controlled and funded biolabs” doesn’t mean much. Almost everybody has those.

      I’m not cheering for Ukraine, mind you. It’s a cesspit of corruption, and the fact that the evil progs are all-in for it is enough to make a guy stop cheering all by itself. But that sure as hell doesn’t mean I’m cheering for Vladimir Putin’s invasion.

      “You have to support either Russia or Ukraine” is a false dichotomy. Neither are worth supporting, and there’s no reason why anyone has to cheer either side onward. They BOTH suck. And our biggest enemy — the real enemy of everyone — is our own feckless corruptocrat “elites,” who seem to be doing their darnedest to drag the western world into another gigantic war, from which everyone but them will emerge poorer.

    7. @ “Patthomas55”
      Boy, would you have been conflicted in WW2 Europe then! Hitler and Stalin, both murderous tyrannical lunatics, fighting each other! Automatic assignment to Team Nazi or Team Soviet in your mind there! Or WW2 China, for that matter, with a 3 way war among commies, national socialists, and the imperial Japan invaders!
      It seems like you have completely forgotten the American Left’s close ties to Russia worship, behind their maskirovka of a cardboard bogeyman in 2016. Remember Obama’s “flexibility” after 2012? Or how about current events, where Xiden’s oil policies and moratoriums directly benefit Putin by driving up prices worldwide, helping fund Russia’s war effort? Not to mention that a rather large portion of the Ukrainian contacts of the Left are stooges directly tied to the Russian government and Russian Mafia, and currently not in power there?
      The notion that the world is comprised of more hat colors than black or white is foreign to you, isn’t it?
      You are a buzzword idiot, and as shallow in your comprehension of world affairs as a drying puddle in a desert drought.

    8. he’s cleaning out his neighbor that has been completely taken over by the same evil consortium doing all this other dastardly shite we see globally.

      It’s weird how all these Eastern European countries next to Russia have so many corruption problems. I suppose we will never figure out why. At least Ukraine managed to throw out the deep state stooge in their last election and replaced him with some guy named Zelinsky.

      Ukraine had, has, what, 11-13 biolabs running and controlled by them.

      As does every other part of the world engaged in industrialized agriculture.

      At this point, Putin is closer to a white hat than any of our assholes, thats for sure.

      He does get points for being a more honest strongman thug.

      Has Russia been a net positive for anyone — including Russians — in the last 500 years? Make Russia Poland Again.

      1. Given Hitler’s genocidal tendencies with respect to Slavs, maybe Russia was a net positive for Russians for a few years in the early 1940’s. Given how bad Stalin was, though, it was only a brief period, and a small net positive.

          1. Yes, the Nazis were initially welcome. It didn’t last too long. If Hitler hadn’t been a racist genocidal maniac he probably could have conquered the USSR with the help of its people, or at least overthrown the Stalin Regime.

    9. Oh bullshit. He is agressively CONQUERING as much as he bloodly well can. The fact he’s a complete clownshow about it doesn’t make him some poor little victim. Get your lips off his ass. Is Ukrain saintly? No. But since when did you have to be saintly to have the right NOT to have your neighbor come in, shoot you and steal your house. That’s what Russia’s doing so go back to your damn paymaster and maybe he’ll feed you. Get out of my fucking country you cowardly traitor,.

    10. In the 30s you’d have been parroting Walter Durranty’s BS, wouldn’t you?

      Putin idolizes Stalin, of course he’s going to try and subdue his idol’s primary punching bag.

  5. Most misery in history has come at the hands of some “know it all” forcing people to live “their” way.

    Most prosperity has come when “leaders” pretty much leave people alone.

    The next president will do well to leave us alone!

    1. Most misery has stemmed from the hardness of life. Famine, flood, fire, plague, etc. caused far more misery than human intention.

      1. Yes, the world is an unforgiving place. But free people, being left alone, have mostly overcome the misery of all these “natural disasters”. Drought in a free country may kill a handful of people but in a “controlled” country will kill millions. Communist countries have murdered 100-200 million (probably more) of their own people the last 100 years.

        1. Communist governments have outright murdered at least 100 million of their own people. The death toll from starvation and various other types of privation is much harder to count, but is likely well over 300 million on top of that.

          Socialism kills.

      2. Nature is far more nasty that people who have decided, “I shall make your life Hell!” But Nature ain’t got nothin’ on the bastages that have decided, “I’m gonna HELP! AND THAT’S THAT!”

    2. Prosperity happens when “I know better” types have their hands FORCIBLY REMOVED from the controls.

      Whether that is gently pushed aside, or cut off with violence is up to them.

      1. It’s even better, and more permanent, when their heads are forcibly removed from their necks. Not much recidivism that way…

  6. “All of these “they’re more organized than us, they’ll do better” are … not.”

    They are better organized at cheating on elections, turning organizations, emotional propaganda and conspiracies because they are playing to win by all means while a large part of the population is still blind to the shenanigans. Their true ultimate motives and actions are considered inconceivable by those that are still asleep. Things got so comfortable, the fact that evil exists was forgotten.

    BUT, the more uncomfortable and expensive daily life gets for the public, the more the facade crumbles. In the end there will be an accounting and it won’t be pretty.

    1. I’m not sure they actually are. Most of their efforts seem to have been localized semi-independent folks who had bought into both the idea that the ends justified the means and that the ends they were pursuing was stopping literal Hitler.

      That’s why so much of it was so blatant: expel everyone of the wrong party, cover the windows in pizza boxes and shred/burn the legally required records immediately after submitting the numbers type things.

      So many people should have gone to jail for destruction of evidence, but given it was the people that had benefitted who would have been the ones who prosecuted it, it just got ignored.

      1. I get annoyed at the, “It’s foolish and unsupportable to believe there was organized election fraud,” types because they ignore the power of long-term corruption. You didn’t need a Sinister Cabal in 2020, just a handful of city machines where the boss goes to the worker bees and tells them to do that voodoo they do so well.

        1. True. I’m more arguing they aren’t hugely competent at it either.

          I suspect they’ve only been able to get away with it because investigating it is very hard, and generally they haven’t been all that effective. It only seems to have gotten wide spread notice after the events of the last election, and investigating it is still really hard.

          Remember that mess in Broward County in the 2018 election, when the Election supervisor locked herself in a room with a pile of blank ballots, and the police couldn’t evict her, because apparently it wasn’t actually illegal? It literally took that sort of insanity to finally get her removed from office. And I don’t think she was even stripped of office; I think she just embarrassed the Democrats enough that she was pressured into resigning.

          Going to be an interesting election cycle, that’s for certain.

          1. I suspect they’ve only been able to get away with it because investigating it is very hard

            And also Everyone Knows(tm) that fraud doesn’t happen so why are you even asking questions and wasting everyone’s time.

      2. We, (a Texas based government watchdog group, http://openrecords.org/ ), have compared our notes with like-minded groups around the country. We take notes, track flight records and develop sources as well as investigate election results and voter rolls.

        The results are local to the city, county, and state but the same spectrum of cheating techniques were shared nationwide. Various election officials and Democratic groups attend the same conferences, are on the same internet forums/conferences calls and get funded by the same shady NGOs. And there proven ties at a certain leadership level to local BLM groups. (Antifa appears to be handled by the TLAs, but has a good mix of usual suspects locally.)

        They communicate and share ideas. They are GOOD at cheating an undefended system. They have hacked the election system as well as an experienced nation-state pentester crew can exploit an unpatched MS Windows domain set up by novices.

        So the basis of the techniques seems to be whatever they can get away with. In a Democratic controlled county or city there can be a full assortment of tactics including barring witnesses, false mail-in ballots, massive fake voters/ballots, and modifying computerized election systems. And they got away with it big time.

        In Dallas County, not only was the computer system hacked/modified to change tens of thousands of votes, there were numerous case of votes being voted more than once, false mail-in ballots from out of state, out of country. Also ballot harvesting from homeless, nursing homes, vacant houses, businesses, etc. And help from sympathetic arse-holes from overseas who ordered mail-in ballots and voted without being Texas or US residents.

        In addition, the Dallas County DA and Police databases were hacked/sabotaged last year, destroying evidence. The overall incompetence/corruption of the local Democratic system combined with the mostly worthless local media insures the ongoing mess continues uninhabited.

          1. See the domain mentioned in the post above.

            You are also welcome to request/download and analyze voter registration and election records from the State of Texas and Dallas and other counties. Requires some skills, but either MySQL or PostgreSQL will do.

        1. I am very persuadable of Democrat fraud. It is a historical fact, and the arguments for why the Democrats might have changed their ways remain unpersuasive.

          The analogy you use seems super funky to me. What audience are you trying to reach that ‘pentester’ would clarify things for them? It seems to me that any sort of information security audience could easily understand the security issues in electronic voting machines, and that the only way they could be oblivious is a) if they know nothing of elections and nothing of law or b) they are deliberately oblivious.

          I’m extremely skeptical of issues being fixed this cycle.

          The security issues appear to be very much deliberate and knowing, even if they are deniable in the eyes of lawyers.

          I do not think that the issues are completely intractable.

          There are many places outside of the entrenched democrat machines. I believe that we have a slow, long ‘fight’ on our hands.

          1. The analogy isn’t perfect, but if you look at compromising an election from the view point of a Red Team you don’t always have to look at the computer systems. You can look at ID and residence requirements and go from there. Probably 20 different social and physical hacks to corrupt the election, but the best one is to have control of the people that are in charge of counting and certification.

            The biggest issue is that the media and RINOs deny there is any issues at all.

    2. They aren’t better at it (see ‘The left can’t meme’). If they were better at propaganda they wouldn’t need complete control of the narrative to pull the wool over people’s eyes.

  7. I fully expect things to get very ugly by late summer into early fall.
    Food shortages and what is available double in cost from a year ago.
    Big city riots because the cost of simply living is being priced out of reach of mid to lower incomes.
    A complete breakdown of both primary and secondary education as the progressive left’s takeover of those institutions comes home to roost.
    It’s not beyond possibility that the current powers that be either create or escalate some crisis in an attempt to postpone the midterm elections. They can see their power slipping from their grasp and that will simply not be tolerated.
    So should be a very interesting year in the true Chinese curse sense of that word.

    1. I also think it will kick loose after harvest-time. We’re OK for now because we’re still living on last year’s gains … but next year is bound to get interesting, for certain terms of interesting.
      There will be a flash-point, either inadvertent, or deliberately engineered. Don’t know what and when – but it will happen. I’m getting everything battened under hatches in my household. I don’t think it will get too bad in Texas, but with the current lot in charge of the federal government, anything is possible.

      1. I’ve finished with the hard part of getting the garden ready (and the trees lost a bunch of roots in the raised beds), so we can get the seedlings in place soon. (I need to check the frost-plastic for the June hard-freezes. Region 1 is soooooooo fun!)

        After that, it’s building a chicken coop. It needs to be insulated, though I’m told supplemental heat should not be necessary. OTOH, I’ll put provisions in for a bit of heat…

        The R candidate for Oregon governor is now polling slightly ahead of the Wokeistan D. OTOH, since we have had fraud-by-mail for years, it’ll likely be a blowout for the Donk, even if they have to inflate Portland’s voting to 150% turnout. On the gripping hand, people in Flyoverlandia are getting pissed.

        1. OTOH. All 3 in the official race, R/D/I are women. Not sure what woke-ism feature the D has over either the I or the R candidates, other than D. Doesn’t matter. While I’d like to vote for Betsy (I), will stick with the R ticket. Learned that lesson a long time ago.

            1. A rancher and local committee member recommended McQuisten. No luck there. Non-professional politicos not allowed. Sigh.

              1. We opened the ballots. Didn’t bother to mark them and send them in. We had no idea who was whom, or whom was who. Thought about writing out names, folding them up, putting them in a hat, and pulling one out. No state or local measures on the ballot so exercised our rights to not vote.

      2. And was just reading that the EPA just approved the biggest ethanol mix requirement ever for this year’s gas. That’s not going to cause any problems is it?

        1. I guess they figure if they add enough ethanol to the mix to damage car engines, they can achieve their dream of forcing everyone out of their cars. There is a huge Great Leap Forward element to their plan to pack everyone into cities and force everyone to use mass transit, etc., using the twin pretexts of “ending racism” and “climate catastrophe” to impose their Green Leap Forward.

          This is why they are so adamantly opposed to nuclear power, which generates large scale CO2 emission free energy; indeed the left is on record as openly stating that they oppose to nuclear energy because it “does not advance the cause of social justice”; i.e. it does not result in energy shortages that will serve as justification for government mandated rationing based on identity group membership.

          Yes, we know they are incompetent idiots. But they are also evil power hungry ones who desire absolute total control over people’s lives. In the long run they lose, but they can do a lot of damage as they do so.

          1. And for some cars will result in the warranty being voided as well. They want to wreck people’s cars AND make it impossible for replacements to be purchased.

          2. I’ve worked in ethanol previously, though not in a while. Any engine built post 2001 will be fine. Don’t put it in your diesel, boat, 2-stroke.

    2. if gas prices keep on theri present trajectory, i can see the first paragraph. The second? No reason for that to suddenly happen now.

      1. I see no way in which burning massive amounts of the potential food supply for fuel could ever pose a problem.

        1. I don’t see how there’s going to be a sudden collapse of education in the fall, which is what i was referring to.

          1. The collapse of both primary and secondary education would seem inevitable given that both are rife with progressive left ideology. Probably not going to spontaneously combust this fall when other forces act to make our current situation intolerable though. Just mentioned it as another house of cards built by idiots living in a bubble increasingly at odds to reality.
            Hearing reports that a large number of primary students are not returning from the long teacher union inspired vacation, likely diverted to either private or home schooling. And the university scam selling a gullible public that any college degree is worth taking on massive debt is finally being shown to be a con job. Rather surprised some clever lawyers don’t jin up a class action suit against a host of universities for false advertising and deceptive practices.

          2. Day Job has seen mid-semester transfers in, for the first-time ever. And admissions requests are climbing at all the charter and private/parochial schools. And home-school groups are growing very quickly. Something’s in the water.

    3. Anecdata here, but when I went grocery shopping yesterday the sandwich bread was 80 percent or less of what it should’ve been. I go to Aldi, which is notoriously no-frills, but it was an unnerving sight nonetheless.

  8. Our so-called betters don’t want us to Learn From History which is why they pushed “Made-Up-History” in our schools. 😦

  9. Agree with Sarah. “The past is a different country . . . but it’s not a different planet!” Dr. Art MacAvoy. Used often on students in certain sub-fields of history to remind us that people are people, be they tribal people or Soviet people or East Asian people. People will only take so much, with culture being the variable that helps determine what “so much” is.

    The push against mask mandates and coof testing for people coming back into the US from places that don’t have much coof are the tip of the iceberg. The Wall Street Journal had an article yesterday about the big grocery retailers pushing against price increases. That means the producers are going to start pushing harder against the gov for forcing the cost increases. The mule’s going to kick.

    1. One of my favorite aspects of writing my undergrad history thesis was reading the guild charter for the barbers and surgeons of York (1524? Sometime before 1572)

      Things that would get you fined by the guild:
      * Being found in a pub during the hour of the sermon
      * An unclean shop
      * Using foul language to the guild inspectors.

      People are people and have been people since the day we got kicked out of Eden/ fell out of our trees.

      1. The guilds and apprentice contracts in the Hansa cities (those I’ve read) in the 1200s, fussed about drunkeness, and working on the Sabbath. And journeymen not showing up for religious confraternity meetings in a state of soberness and reverence. As you say . . .

    2. It hurt (Mythical Creature) head when supposed Reality-native folks don’t know how their OWN WORLD works. And… ox slow! But so may of those and ox need other sloe… gin.

    3. And the Journalmran a story yesterday that confirms what BGE’s been saying here for months: China’s in trouble.

      1. Cato has nothing on me. Im starting to worry i might be wrong now that all the establishment types are coming to the conclusion I drew years ago, but the evidence is so strong that I suppose I’ll hold on to it. They’ve forbidden use of the term lock down.

        They’re coming around to my recession call too. Now, if only they start to agree with me on LT interest rates, I’ll be able to make bank. High prices cause low prices. Supply be damned. Food might still be very expensive, but everything else will go to the wall.

    4. How is any sort of pushback going to change anything? Gas is damned high, which sodomizes everything else, and with the labour shortage (nearly every place I see has HIRING with signing bonuses – even burgerville) that is probably not helped by people’s not wanting to work with masks and no positive idea if that will come back (my own personal theory)

  10. “Russia… well, I’m sure Putin thinks it’s a super power.”

    Putin might realize that Russia is not currently a superpower (though it’s likely that he doesn’t realize just how bad things are). But I think the more important aspect is that his people still think that Russia is a superpower. And if Putin doesn’t at least act like it (regardless of whether or not he believes it), he’ll lose the support of his population in short order.

  11. We tossed out the sympathizers for the plan, replaced them with capitalists and libertarians (mostly wearing GOP colors) last election. Not seeing a lot of empty shelves here. Local products taking over for anything we can’t get otherwise. We’re still seeing spring calves in all the pastures, wheat being planted a little late with the cooling climate. Maybe we’re not exporting as much outside of MT, but no one is going hungry here. Gas is too dam high for a state with both oil and refineries, but maybe that’s going to change.

    1. In IA, I think we’re finding out that we have a lot of RINO GOP. The crops are in, the spring calves are getting past the cute stage, the chicken facilities are keeping the bird flu out, hogs are doing well. The wind turbines are blossoming everywhere and we will use gas cut with 15% ethanol. Yet we are getting notices of eminent power shortages!?! (I don’t even want to see my fertilizer bill.) Flyover country is getting squeezed hard.

      1. The unprintables in charge mandated shutdown of all coal burning power plants, I hear. Additionally not enough new power plants have been permitted and built to carry the load if the old ones are turned off.

        I wonder if the politicians realize that sticking to the plan here will result in the termination of most politicians.

        1. Meanwhile China and India alone are ramping up increase their coal production by amounts that exceed the USA’s entire annual coal production:


          Our shutting coal plants down (and ours burn a lot cleaner than the CCP’s or India’s) is utterly meaningless except to create energy shortages in the USA. Those shortages are clearly intended with malice aforethought.

      2. I was biting my nails for a few weeks, there– slowest start for decades, but was good to hear the over-all planting progress caught up.

    2. We’re dry (western TX). Scary dry. Irrigated stuff is looking OK, but pastures and dryland crops are not prospering. In-state produce is starting to come in. Out of state produce is higher than a cat’s back, price wise. My favorite cereal has gone up two dollars since Jan 1, and gas went up $0.20 overnight. I am not pleased, even though our prices are “low” because we’re not far from the refineries.

      1. Local gas was going up leaps and bounds, the $0.20 – $0.30 overnight, or at least over the weekend, a couple of weeks ago. Last week it only went up $0.05/gallon. Stayed steady at Costco $4.99, and Freds on Division $5.09. OTOH Freds on W 11th and Springfield are both at $5.15, why higher? IDK. Both are always higher than on Division. (Just checked GasBuddy prices.)

        Produce. Not seeing shortages. Prices definitely up. No more $0.99/# apples for example. The russet potato piles are a lot smaller as are the potatoes. Not as good of quality either for this time of the year.

        1. I’m not seeing any potatoes from S. Central Oregon this year. Usually, the independent store will get Russets from them, but every bag has been coming from Pasco/Richland. Not sure I like potatoes from near Hanford, but so far they’re not glowing in the dark.

          They might be small potatoes, but they’re above average in bad spots. The compost bucket gets a workout on potato day. I would not want to get a baked potato at a restaurant this year…

          FWIW, the local Fred Meyer is now at $5.19 for regular. I make liberal use of the rewards for fuel discounts (I’ll get Home Desperate and/or JoAnn gift cards for the 2X fuel points. A $100 dollar gift card maps to a 20 cent per gallon discount.) I’m getting selective about buying from Depot, though. I do have to replace the hard-freeze plastic, and that’s $140 a roll now. Ecch.

          1. We build up the Freds fuel reward points too. Have $0.20 remaining from last month. Which will make fueling next time cheaper than Costco, for a change. Costco has been running $0.20, or more, cheaper. But not now. Hubby and son have been going to cash locations. Husband because it is on the way to golf. Son because until now, on the way to his work, plus his car “prefers” premium.

  12. I have a button at home that says, “History doesn’t always repeat herself. Sometimes she screams, “WHY WON’T YOU LISTEN TO ME?” and let’s fly with a club.

  13. “Russia… well, I’m sure Putin thinks it’s a super power.”

    I hear a rumor (take with a hill of salt) that Putin may have terminal cancer and this current crisis is him lashing out one last time before he’s gone. If — IF — it’s true, I’d be very worried, because a tyrant who knows he’s not getting out alive could do something extremely destabilizing.

    1. I’m genuinely not sure what will be more destabilizing, short term: Him doing stupid things before he goes (Russia is used to their leaders doing insane and stupid things.), or him dying without a clear successor (which he does not have.)

      1. Don’t tyrants tend to eliminate potential successors because they might try for Klingon promotion?

        1. Yes, and it usually means a nasty period of scrambling and nastiness (sometimes wars) when they do go. Wise ones, or those with cultures less prone to familial assassination, will pick someone who KNOWS they will inherent, and gives enough perks they wait.

  14. One of my political maxims is that socialist economies can only consume wealth.

    Another is that hypocrisy is essential to leftist philosophy.

    I’ve yet to falsify either; the current crew is certainly failing to provide counterexamples.

  15. Sarah, this is one of your best (ever) ‘thought pieces’ — I agree that we are edging ever-closer to our bedrock moment. When we hit bedrock, all bets are off, people are not going to submit to lunacy, stupidity, and depraved ideas.

  16. …would eat cat poop in a candy wrapper.

    Pa had a (narsty) joke about a fellow fooled into eating rabbit leavings in a candy wrapper, having been told they are ‘Smart Berries.’

    “YECCH! These are rabbit [droppings]!”
    “See? You’re smarter already!”

    1. There was this guy named Orville. And he needed a job. As he was walking down the street he saw a sign in front of this building. The sign said “BE RICH BE A SALESMAN.”

      So Orville went into the building and said “I’m the best salesman in the world.” The manager replied “Well then if that’s the case I’ll give you the job. “First we have a large supply of toothbrushes that need to be sold. Do you think you can handle that?”

      Orville said ” Of course.”

      So Orville went out on the streets to sell his toothbrushes. A week went by and Orville’s boss wanted to see him. He asked Orville how many toothbrushes he had sold. Orville replied “I only sold twenty.” He said.

      “Orville if you want to keep this job you will have to sell more than that.” Orville walks out with his briefcase full of toothbrushes. This time instead of selling them on the street he went down in the subway. Another week went by and Orville’s boss called him into the office for another weekly report.

      His boss asked him how many toothbrushes he sold this week. Orville replied ” I only sold fifty this week.” “Not enough,” his boss said “I’ll give you one more chance.” So he went out again to sell toothbrushes, and this time he went to the airport.

      Another more week had passed by. Orville’s boss called him in. He said ” How many toothbrushes have you sold?”

      Orville replied, “I sold 47,391!”

      His boss goggled, “Holy COW! How did you sell all of those?

      Orville answered, “Well you see I was at the airport selling these toothbrushes and I brought chips and dip. And when the people walked by I asked them If they wanted some chips and dip. They said “sure.” After they tasted it they said ” This taste like shit!”

      Orville replied “It is! Want to buy a toothbrush??????????????”

      1. In this world Orville’s lucky he didn’t end up in a piece of luggage going to Kuala Lumpur.

        1. The airport in Kuala Lumpur is a sight not to be missed. Make sure you take in the uniformed rat catchers since they built the thing on a swamp and the denizens simply moved in. Does wonders for the wiring.

          KL’s first class lounge — hey! I wasn’t paying — is the size of several football fields, filled with copies of anti-American screeds by Marathir Mohammed, and usually almost entirely empty. A sight to be seen,

  17. Sure, we could conquer the entire clown car of them, but they wouldn’t keep us going for a week.

    I recall, years ago, someone positing what it would take for the USA to invade and make off with EVERYTHING of value in Haiti(?). And after going through what military power, and what transport, etc, it would take, pulled the reveal (in a rather depressed time, too!) “Or we could just run the USA economy, as bad off as it is now, for 20 or 30 minutes, and get the same benefit without all that expense.” Today, with things all “Bidened-Up” as they are, it might take a whole TWO HOURS.

  18. }}} (I always found it funny that the soviets called us imperialist, when in fact they needed their empire to just keep going.)

    Indeed — as the USSR collapsed, it became clear how much of their various toxic waste end-products they had dumped on poor old Czechoslovakia. They needed someplace to put it, someone decided that the were the “correct” place to do so.

    1. I had some Czechoslovak export ammo that I shot. It was lousy, and one out of every six rounds was bad, on average. Makes me wonder about the quality of the stuff they “gave with fraternal thanks” to the USSR.

      1. The soviets considered Czech and East German to be the good stuff, one can imagine what the ir own must have been like.

    1. Sounds just wonderful:

      “During World War I and World War II, government agencies engaged thousands of local volunteers to roam through communities investigating prices and behavior.

      In 1943, “pleasure driving” was banned, and police pulled thousands of people over; drivers had to explain to the federal Office of Price Administration why their trips were necessary.

      During national emergencies, people will put up with not being able to haggle, waiting in line to get a fraction of what they want and even being hauled in front of a review board of nosy bureaucrats.”

      The covid panic didn’t quite give them the “national emergency” they needed, and Russia/Ukraine hasn’t done it either. But the economic damage that’s still accumulating from both of these stupid-on-purpose debacles might.

      1. The Reader is wondering exactly what ‘national emergency’ they will invoke to do this? Maybe we’ll see Directive 10-289. Liz Warren certainly wants to (BTW she would make a great Ayn Rand villain).

        1. She is an idiotic bureaucrat who runs the lives of the subjects of the empire of DC. She IS the villain Rand warned about, as is every other walking cowpie in that city and surrounding environs.

        2. I’m sure someone has been working on imposing 10-289. It won’t work with an armed populace.

      2. Back when I was researching something else, I read wonderful, snarling, letters to the editor during the 1940s from farmers complaining because, per the ration boards, driving to town to deliver their crops was OK. Returning to the farm empty handed was OK. Combining shopping trips for “personal goods” (groceries, non-farming parts) was penalized. They had to go home, then return and use gas points and rubber points (tires) to buy groceries and visit the doctor and so on.

        1. On the drive back from Home Depot and Kroger earlier tonight I was reflecting on the fact that government responses to small or imagined problems tend to make them worse. Government badly mismanaged the rail system during WWI, and the USRA was headed by a man familiar with rail and whose senior ranks were populated by railroad executives on temporary assignment. Government mismanagement during WWI was largely responsible for the coal shortages the railroads and power companies ran into.

          1. The aftermath was interesting too. The government forced all the freight forwarders together into one firm because the government had broken them during the war, In the UK, they forced all the different railways into 4 big ones after WWI since, again, they’d broken them. After WWII the Brits just stole them, nationalization they call it. Spit.

            Don’t get me started on Penn Central and how the American railway system was damned near broken by taxes. Again, they bailed out a process they broke. A—holes.

            1. If by freight forwarders, you’re referring to the express freight companies (Southern, Wells Fargo, Adams, etc.) then yes, totally. Government screwed things up until they can’t reliably turn a profit, then basically mandated the consolidation of the businesses (at least the express side of them, some of the firms continued in financial services) into a railroad-owned behemoth, the Railroad Express Agency. Thirty years later the ICC severely limited said behemoth’s ability to effectively compete with the rising trucking industry. By 70’s it was a shadow of itself and going bankrupt.

              The 1950’s federal tax changes that resulted in subsidiaries and parent railroads paying taxes on the same income were bad enough. In many states, property taxes were also a menace to the maintenance of railroad service and infrastructure. People in so many towns bemoan destruction of their old town depot, but many states had tax policies that basically incentivized their demolition.

              I could go on for ages about all the government interference and regulation that made a mess of the railroad industry. It seems like after WWII the federal government did everything possible to keep them from being competitive. Bad as legislation was, I’m not sure the ICC wasn’t worse. The STB that replaced the ICC seems to be less harmful because its scope is more limited, both due to legislation and the consolidation of the industry.

      3. Which is why they are so anxious to disarm the citizenry. An armed citizenry will not tolerate this, no matter how much Democrats/Establishment delude themselves into thinking that people will.

      4. One has to wonder how much more gas was used the by the federal Office of Price Administration to catch these unpatriotic Sunday drivers than would have been if they’d just left them alone.

    2. I had a summer job at a Big Steel Company’s subsidiary, providing fabricated pieces for construction. Shortly after the W&P edict came out, the other subsidiary (warehouse arm of BSCo) published a new price list. Magically, they found a time machine and backdated the new prices to a month beforehand. They never got called on it…

  19. Other than Oh sh-t, oops, and I wonder what this red button does, the most dangerous words are “it’s different this time.” More fortunes have been lost due to that than any other thing.

  20. Invading nearby more prosperous lands allows the regime to give goodies to its followers and the people who do its dirty work. But it also allows an illusion of increased prosperity which the regime needs to go on.

    Oh, :bad words:.

    Just realized something horrible….

    The Nazis looted themselves, first.

    The whole “kill off the disabled, including war wounded” thing they started with.

    So they looted themselves, and then moved on…..

    1. And you expect anything different from Down Below? Whether it was the Accuser himself, or one of his lieutenants, who stuck things into Marx’s mind, into Hitler’s mind – does it really matter? It’s of the devil.

      1. I always expect better, because people can be better.

        Prepare for worse, yes, but expect better and sorrow when someone falls short.

  21. I guess they can delude themselves about it a little while, like they can convince themselves that their bright and shiny African colonization schemes work. (In reality, Africa is already winning. Africa always wins. Not its people. But Africa does.)

    Every time I see people wring their hands over the African Belt & Road Initiative I wonder what Xi thinks he can actually do when (not if) some of those countries have a regime change and decide not to pay. What can they come in and take? They certainly can’t count on the natives helping them!
    It may not be as bad as fighting a war in Afghanistan but it’s not likely to be profitable.

    1. It’ll be worse. The US has the ability to project power globally. Afghanistan was right next door to the Soviet Union. China can’t project power more than a few hundred feet beyond their border. They’re the bank in the old joke about owing the bank a million dollars.

      1. Based on the reports after the last China v. India spat up in the mountains, I’d say that the average Chinese conscript is, well, cannon fodder at best. I’m sure the Chinese do have some very good troops, but the ones that lost to the Indians last summer were not examples of stellar military training and discipline.

        1. I’m rather disappointed thar I have to keep pointing out to people that the PLA has been doing politically correct since day one.

        2. Peace time conscripts are usually lousy. They exist to fill ranks. It’s generally not expected that they’ll actually fight in a serious conflict, so training (which costs money) is limited. They can hopefully march. They can carry a rifle. Everything else is a bonus. And their motivation is poor when fighting outside their country (which was sort of the case in the recent disputes with India), since they’re not in the military by choice.

      2. China has some logistical capability, and might be able to support an overseas operation. However, I doubt that they’d be able to pull off a Desert Storm-level of deployment. It’s a question mark, because we know that they have some capability. But they’ve never been forced to use any of it, so we don’t know how effective it is.

        It would also require that the locals not have access to a real navy, which isn’t a problem in Africa. The PLAN has a lot of warships. But my understanding is that most of them don’t have much range. The PLAN could probably handle escorts on largely unopposed regular convoys. But anything beyond that would likely be a problem right now.

        1. Most of the PLAN is not blue water capable. They have numbers but pathetic tonnage and can’t project to any of the places they would desperately need to project to if we don’t give them overwatch.

          And their “carrier” cannot operate without land based air cover. That is assuming they can operate it at all under combat conditions without turning the flight deck into a raging inferno.

          1. I already addressed most of those points in my post.

            As for their carriers (note the plural), your point is accurate against other effective militaries. But this is Africa we’re talking about. The PLAN carriers wouldn’t need land-based air cover because the locals don’t have anything that could launch an effective strike back at them.

            Let’s say, for instance, that China suddenly feels the need to intervene in Tanzania, which in 2015 was number 10 on the list of African nations that were getting financial support from the PRC (I picked them because they’re on the east coast of Africa; only after I picked them did I verify that they’d been getting a lot of Chinese aid). Tanzania’s navy consists of less than twenty patrol boats and fast attack craft. A single PLAN escort group would almost certainly sweep them from the water with no casualties. Meanwhile, the most advanced fighters in the Tanzanian air force are J-7s, which are (somewhat ironically, given the hypothetical) a Chinese copy of the famed MiG-21. With no CATOBAR system, the Liaoning and Shandong can’t operate heavy planes similar to the F-18 Super Hornet. But the over two dozen J-15 fighters that each individual carrier normally fields should be more than capable of handling the Tanzanian air force – particularly since each of the PLAN carriers operates more fighters than the entire Tanzanian air force (the Tanzanian air force has roughly two dozen combat aircraft, which are a mix of J-7 fighters and dedicated strike aircraft).

            In short, yes, the PLAN could easily get regular convoys going to and from a Tanzanian port. And there’s nothing that the Tanzanians could do about it. The only real question is the sea lift capability available to the PLAN (as well as the size of the port facilities in Tanzania), as that determines how big of an operation they can support.

            1. So assume that happens. Would they get anything on those convoys worth what it cost to get it?

              1. No. Talking as someone who saw an African war up close and personal, since I had cousins who died in it: You have NO idea how hard Africa would win. By being Africa.

                1. From what I’ve seen, when it comes to military operations Africa is Afghanistan writ very large. With chaos for a topping. (Yeah, I know; mixed metaphors…) Expecting anything even approaching good results puts Pollyanna to shame.

        2. They’ve managed to deploy a couple of destroyers to the Caribbean after a lot of working up. There’s a huge gap between having ships and being able to use the ships.

          A couple of years ago my director showed us a Chinese Navy motivation video in an effort to get us to get ships out of the yard faster. Part of it featured flight ops and it struck me, having seen USN flight ops, like kids dressing up in their parent’s clothes and playing adult. They’re going through the motions, but they don’t really understand so the motions aren’t quite right.

          1. ” Part of it featured flight ops and it struck me, having seen USN flight ops, like kids dressing up in their parent’s clothes and playing adult.”

            That’s why they have Liaoning and Shandong. Those two carriers exist in part so that the PLAN can figure out how carrier operations work, and why things are done the way that they are. They’re “trainee carriers” so to speak. And in fairness, both the USN and IJN (and presumably the RN, as well, though I haven’t read about their historical teething issues) went through their own bits of this back in the day with ideas that looked good on paper, but didn’t work out in the real world (such as the port side islands on Akagi and Hiryu). In the coming years, the JMSDF is probably going to have to relearn a lot of lessons that were forgotten with the destruction of the IJN.

            However, even though Chinese naval aviation is still in its infancy, it should be more than capable of sweeping aside something like the Tanzanian air force, as I noted elsewhere.

            1. But the Japanese flight deck crews will have the advantage of training with experienced American crews, so they won’t have to relearn a lot of the lessons the Chinese will.

              Sweeping aside the Tanzanian air force is irrelevant since neither of the Chinese carriers are going to be able to deploy to the African theater of operations. Deploying a carrier in your own waters, deploying a ship across the ocean, and deploying a carrier across the ocean are all very different things.

              1. I suspect that the Chinese could get one of them over to the east coast of Africa for a short duration. And that’s likely all that would be needed. If the Chinese want a long-term presence (and can sea lift enough material to supply the non-naval components, of course), then either Liaoning or Shandong only needs to stick around long enough for the ground troops to secure an air field. Once that’s done, the PLAAF can fly some planes in to handle the operation’s air cover. And then the carrier goes home. It’s in and out with the carrier, with a very short deployment on-station.

            2. There are basic cultural aspects of running safe and effective carrier ops that the CCP can’t adopt without killing themselves.

              Until they adopt those traits any combat deployment — and really any deployment whatsoever that actually uses the damn things — should be expected to end in a pile of burning wreckage and a lot of dead sailors.

  22. A day late, but…

    A Pict Song

    Rome never looks where she treads.
    Always her heavy hooves fall
    On our stomachs, our hearts or our heads;
    And Rome never heeds when we bawl.
    Her sentries pass on—that is all,
    And we gather behind them in hordes,
    And plot to reconquer the Wall,
    With only our tongues for our swords.

    We are the Little Folk—we!
    Too little to love or to hate.
    Leave us alone and you’ll see
    How we can drag down the State!
    We are the worm in the wood!
    We are the rot at the root!
    We are the taint in the blood!
    We are the thorn in the foot!

    Mistletoe killing an oak—
    Rats gnawing cables in two—
    Moths making holes in a cloak—
    How they must love what they do!
    Yes—and we Little Folk too,
    We are busy as they—
    Working our works out of view—
    Watch, and you’ll see it some day!

    No indeed! We are not strong,
    But we know Peoples that are.
    Yes, and we’ll guide them along
    To smash and destroy you in War!
    We shall be slaves just the same?
    Yes, we have always been slaves,
    But you—you will die of the shame,
    And then we shall dance on your graves!

    We are the Little Folk, we, etc.

  23. Marxists like to go on about “late stage capitalism.” Like most things that qualify as Marxist “thought,” that’s pure projection. Capitalism doesn’t have a late state, but Leftism does. Generations of promoting based on ideological conformity rather than competence has resulted in all the institutions being run by people who can mouth all the right pieties but can’t actually do their jobs. Most organizations have enough redundancy that they can absorb a few gold brickers like that, but eventually you get to a tipping point and effectiveness collapses.

    Welcome to late stage Leftism.

    1. “Late stage capitalism” is as close to universal prosperity as humanity is ever going to get. Of course the leftist death cult wants to kill it.

  24. “But the propaganda is busted. the last four years really revealed what’s in the heart of the collectivists.”

    Have you noted the -insane- nature of what is going on in this year’s SF conventions? We have Mercedes Lackey kicked out of the Nebula convention for saying “coloured” and we now have Stephanie Burke kicked out of Balticon under what appear to be … false pretenses. Note that Ms. Burke’s Woke Victim credentials are utterly unassailable, and she is literally a diversity proof-reader. Didn’t matter, kicked off anyway.

    The collectivists don’t have enemies to go after anymore since we all told them to step off in 2016/17, so now they are going after their ‘friends.’ We told them this would happen, because the dynamic is simple bullying. They always demand more, because whole point is to exercise their power. They don’t care who they exercise that power on, or what the result is.

    They’re crack addicts. They want another hit, and another, and another. It is ugly, and predictable. My serving of schadenfreude is scrumptious and piping hot.

  25. Do you REALLY expect people to go to the primary source documents??? I don’t. I mean, those like us will…but the majority won’t. I’ve SEEN that. Almost twenty years ago, in grad school. (As in: stupid plonker was trying to argue that Heathcliff from Wuthering Heights was a closeted homosexual–from reading criticism of criticism of criticism, rather than the novel itself.

    Heathcliff wasn’t a homosexual. Necrophiliac can be argued, and I’d say more fixated on one single person more than that, but not homosexual.)

      1. Not only unsustainable, but abysmally stupid. Not even engineering needs college, and the same applies to most “real-world” jobs. We need to return to the apprentice-journeyman-master system for the majority of careers which currently require a degree.

        1. The Reader agrees that an apprentice-journeyman-master system would work for engineering in place of college. He also notes that too many engineers at all levels spend too much time staring at their computer screens rather than interacting with their peers / juniors. Mentoring is damn hard work in the engineering professions and the under 40 workforce doesn’t get it at all.

          1. 30+ years as an EE says you’re correct, but I spent at least as much time on the floor as on a computer, and when I started (’76) mentoring was still a “thing”, and I did my share (poor as an instructor as I am) after I acquired some competence in actual engineering as contrasted with schoolwork. I’d also note that the two courses I found most valuable in my work (radar test engineering) were statistics and thermodynamics; I already knew most of the rest, which I got from working with a couple of very good EEs as a design tech, before I started.

      1. Her main role on the Supreme Court will be to make Sonia Sotomayor look less bad by comparison.

  26. I guess my problem is that I’m impatient. I want what’s best in life: to crush the left, see them driven before us, and hear the lamentation of what they call women.

    1. I was in a teahouse in Tulsa yesterday (good tea, bought half a pound) and the server was definitely female…with a beard. The receptionist at the upscale salon was a ringer for Amy Schumer (the trans Jeopardy champion). It was a real relief to find the yarn shop where the owner has firmly banned talk of politics.

    2. We’re already hearing the lamentations as they struggle to describe what a woman is.

  27. “First, there seems to be a hard limit on the kind of crazy Marxist regime that the idiot left wants to impose here. The hard limit is due to the fact that it can’t feed itself.”
    I’m sure they wouldn’t mind seeing some people starve. Depending on the people (kulaks), to them it would be a plus. They don’t like abundance, they like rationing. North Korea seems to be doing just fine.

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