We’re Not Going Back

We’re Not Going Back. You can’t make us.

Let me introduce you to a concept called “singularity.”

It was the hot thing in my field in the 90s. We were accelerating in tech so fast that eventually we were going to hit a point called the singularity. After that point, everything that came before would be non-understandable to the average human. And everything that comes after would not be understandable to us now.

This went along with augmented humans, where were were all going to have hardware ports in our brains and be plugging in thumb drives for extra knowledge. And stuff.

For the record, I was always agnostic on this. (Kind of like on aliens, yes.)

I’ve written one trans-humanist story, and it was because I was invited to a trans-humanist anthology. It’s kind of the price of admission. You get a call that says “Hey do you want to be in x y z anthology?” What they are actually saying is “Do you want six hundred bucks?” (More or less.) And if you’re trying to make a living with words (which is a remarkably precarious existence) you go “Sure, I can do that.” And when the prompt is something like “psychedelic drugs of the seventies” or “Alien strip clubs” you build in a morning to go down the weirdest internet rabbit holes, and become an expert (over time) in the strangest subjects.

What you don’t do is say “Your notion is silly. What even.” Because, you know, you want six hundred bucks, which are the difference between buying groceries and… uh…. not.

But I never truly bought it. Look, yes, a lot of people are nuts. My husband, for instance, wanted us fully hooked on to Alexa, and it took me months of carefully disconnecting the thing whenever I caught it connected before he gave up.

I can see — just not near, because tech is not there — augmented thought and reality devices in a headband, or perhaps a hood, or even glasses, or a neat clip that goes around your ear. Kind of like based bluetooth headsets. Heck, people get me one I can reliably dictate to with my thoughts, so I can write every minute I’m not actually asleep and I’ll buy it and never take it off.

But actual hardware installed in the head? Or inserted in my body not to treat a permanent problem, but just because? Yeah. No. No with bells on and a little mandolin.

Look, I came of age in the time of reel-to-reel home movies. Now? Now my DVDs are gathering dust, because everything is streamed. I’m not doing that with things that require major surgery.

And as for singularity? Like the last trump, it happens every day, little by little and man by man. If you’d brought me forward from 1990 even to day, I’d have a week of extreme confusion trying to understand how we live now. And hard adaptation. Me from the sixties… well, I’d probably eventually happen (Humans are more pliable than most people think) but it would take a long, long time.

But sometimes, sometimes, there singularities of experience and understanding. And once you go there, you can never ever go back. You just can’t.

And we went through one of those in the last six years. And how. Things we thought we knew turned out not to be so. Experts have proven themselves either craven, stupid, or bizarrely twisted. And if they believed half the things they told us too, they’re experts ONLY in make believe.

The masks came down. The whole beautifully painted picture of a reality that we all accepted because …. well, because pretty much everyone did. Even those of us who thought that they were out of their minds on certain things accepted some vast parts of it.

Because you had to believe some parts of it, and well… We believed things like that our politicians, no matter how idiotic, weren’t deliberately malicious and trying to kill us. We believed things like that our medical establishment was actually trying to keep people healthy. We believed– well, a lot of things that just weren’t so.

But the last few years have proven we were wrong. However stupid we thought our politicians were they’re dumber than that, but also they will say and do anything, even if it kills you, to avoid losing power or to gain more power. Our doctors might be fine — I know there are several here as regulars — but the establishment is horrendous.

And we’re not going back. What’s been seen can’t be unseen.

Yesterday, while doing my instapundit rounds (as one does) I went via Powerline Blog. I’ve been trying to give them a link now and then since they got rid of the unbearably idiotic guy. You know, pour encourager les autres.

But yesterday I tripped on one of them “Oh, no. We’re set to win the mid terms, and then Trump goes and says he’ll run again, and it’s allllllll lost.”

AHAHAHAHAH! Oh, wait, you really believe that. Let me laugh harder. AHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAH!

I can’t imagine or even figure out the heads of people who think if only we “got rid” of Trump somehow, we’d all go back to the nice “establishment republicans” and everything will go back to the way it was in the nineties, with more rainbows and butterflies this time.

It’s not that I don’t understand the desire. To most people, even on the right, in my circles, the nineties now appear like a gold age of live-and-let-live. Yes, democrats had bad ideas, but they weren’t actively indoctrinating kiddies in racism in kindergarten. They weren’t actively locking us in our houses, or demanding we take an unproven and insane “vaccine.” Can we just go back to that? they ask.

No, you can’t. You can’t because it was never true. I laugh in the face of right wingers who talk about his new “cancellation” thing. Because it was going on since the mid eighties when I moved here. It’s just they used other innuendo to justify it. You were just a “bad person” in some way. A bad writer, a bad movie maker. You’d gone crazy. You’d lost your touch. Whatever. Now it’s just in the open.

Being in the open doesn’t make it worse. It makes it, however, more noticeable and allows people to see how stupid it is. and once you see it, you can’t unsee it.

Which is why we’re not going back to the “nice nineties” — because now we know what was going on behind the scenes, all the time. And once you see it, you can’t unsee it. You can’t go back. It’s impossible.

If you look at yourself and your opinions, in the last six years, you’ll see how much you’ve changed.

The biggest points in my change are:

A complete and utter distrust of the scientific establishment. I used to think that other than stupid cr*p like global warming, you could trust most of it. I was one of those people who would look up the official research and “the way things are done.” Not anymore. I’ve learned the limits of irreproducibility and also that most non-applied (and some applied like medicine) science is just “Shut up, they explained.”

A complete and utter distrust of our three letter agencies. Used to be that I looked at Heinlein saying that we had the worst intelligence services in the universe and go “well, I guess he’d seen some bad stuff.” Now? Now I look at it and go “You forgot self-serving, corrupt and partisan.”

A complete and utter distrust in centralized government. You know, it’s funny because I thought I already had that distrust. Turns out I was wrong. I still thought they had some sort of competence and ability to do things that benefited the country. Now? Now I think they’re as stupid and incompetent as they’re evil. Government should be as small and localized as possible. No. Smaller and more localized than that. No. Than that too.

A determination that the worst thing that ever happened to this nation were the changes perpetrated by FDR.

And that includes the “Perpetual war establishment.” Used to be I thought that the whole “Foreign wars are a way to kill young males and keep the people subjugated” was commie talk. Now? Trump proved that the “intractable middle east” is not intractable, if you aren’t afraid to stop the wars.

Am I against the military? Never. Like the police they have their place. But I’m against stupid and senseless wars and “building democracy.” We couldn’t even do it in Europe after World War II. Germany is still very much itself and still hates us.

I am for the Stephen Green foreign diplomacy plan. Someone hits us, we hit them back as hard as we can with everything in our arsenal, with a care to sparing our enlisted men who are our most precious resources.

After the leveling, we grab what passes for their leadership by the scruff and say “You f*cked with us. This was a bad idea. Don’t make us come back.”

For the rest? Close the borders, become as self-sufficient as possible, and let the world do what it will.

Stop feeding the crazy of the world a never ending supply of American bodies.

Also I now think schools including curricula should be determined at the district level, no higher. And national or state teacher certification is a joke. Let the schools determine who is fit to and they want to teach their kids. You might see a lot of retired doctors, engineers and computer programmers do it: people who’ve lived and worked in the world and don’t have their empty heads stuffed full of “useless theory”. Yes, some of them will be very bad. That will be a massive improvement.

All this centralized certify this and make sure it’s done that way, and– It’s all bullshit, and has made everything worse. It’s time to sh*tcan it.

And that’s become startling clear to a vast majority of people.

And that’s why we can’t be dragged back to the “Nice nineties.” It’s not just that now the left has lost what remained of its marbles and are declaring their pride in being stupid commies. They always were that. Do you remember a time when they wouldn’t proudly display Che T-shirts or Mao posters? Or that they were shunned for it by the vast majority of lefties?

It’s that now the rest of us know how diligently they worked and how much they undermined our freedom in order to gain power. We know how completely incompetent they are at anything else than gaining and holding power. We know they’d kill all of us — on purpose — to maintain it.

You can’t just be nice to people like that. And any republicans who get elected and think they can be nice and “work across the isle” are already in people’s minds as “people to replace as soon as possible.”

So, no, Trump is not a killer for winning seats. Trump is the only reason a lot of us are voting for even the lamest most rino-ed up GOP on the tickets. Because thanks to Trump they dropped their masks, and we’ve seen what they were doing all the time behind the nice scenary. And we’ll move away from THAT incrementally if needed, but away.

And while I didn’t decide to vote for Trump until the day before the elections in 16 and it was a “well, which of these candidates is less likely to get me shot in the back of the head”, and thought I have doubts about some of the stuff he did, like allowing the merry hell of covidiocy to progress (yes, I know, local rule. But sometimes you need a “hell to the no” from the top.) I would vote for him. I might vote for him more readily than for the politicians who are now imitating him. He made it okay to talk back to the left. And he made the left reveal itself. Just in those he might have done a greater service to the republic than any president in the last 100 years. And he learns, so there’s a good chance he’ll come in and start dismantling the bureaucracy.

It’s worth a try.

I don’t have anything against him personally. Yeah, he has a bombastic personality but I recognize an Odd when I see one. And the bombastic personality is one of the standard overlays. It don’t make no never mind.

And if he goes away, I’m not going to forget everything I’ve seen and go back to “nineties nice.” That’s impossible. Get rid of Trump and we’ll find someone you like even less. Get rid of that one, and we’ll find someone else even more objectionable to the “nice” kind.

The left got the way it is now by never being fought, never being thwarted. They’re giant spoiled children with a death wish, who are trying to kill us all.

You can’t put the toothpaste back in the tube. We’ve seen it.

It’s green, it’s radioactive, it’s made of alien eyes, and what’s been seen can’t be unseen.

Stop wishing for “nice” back and help us build the good. Help us build a good and solid work for our kids and grand kids to grow up in.

And stop lamenting and whining. Otherwise we’re going to give you a lollipop and have you sit with the spoiled kiddies of the left.

460 thoughts on “We’re Not Going Back

    1. Except having to brainstorm something you don’t want to think about? That becomes… a job. Bleh.

      One of the great classes that used to be taught in public schools was “Speech and Debate.” As in, you are assigned a side and you must defend it. No matter how you thought, because your grade depended on it.

      Yes, I learned to think about the other side, but it was a pain if it was something that was wildly opposite my fundamental principles. Like socialism, Wilsonian or FDRian.

      Though, it was nice that teachers actually tried to grade objectively and didn’t (usually) nuke you if you had thought opposite of theirs. Could not imagine working or attending a school these days.

      1. My mom(‘s family) has a saying that if you can’t argue for something, you shouldn’t argue against it.

        Not, you have to argue for it, but you need to be able to understand why someone would want the opposite.

        At some levels and/or degrees of philosophical disagreement, that can FEEL a lot like “Because they are freaking evil.”
        The next step– how to phrase it so that it doesn’t feel evil– is a very powerful defense against abusive rhetoric.

        For example, I can make an argument for allowing the euthanasia of the minor offspring of families with financial difficulties to prevent suffering, and allow the parents to recover physically and in resources so they can better care for their future offspring.

        …yes, that does translate as “kill kids to save money because you can just have another.”

              1. I know. That is what is so scary.

                People who say “Well when you word it that way, no one in their right mind …” No. Someone would absolutely pull this. It has happened before, it is happening now, from everything of out right killing an inconvenient child, after birth, to selling children. Happening in the US without condemnation? OMG, I hope not. Other countries? Wouldn’t bet against it. What does everyone think is happening with these “unaccompanied” minors being brought across the southern border illegally? …
                If it quacks like a duck, it is not a squirrel no matter what the liberals say.

                  1. Oh my …

                    I get it in some ways. Sudden infant death syndrome is no joke. Parents have been put through hell over it. No traceable cause. Yet, I don’t know of a parent who wouldn’t want a through investigation to possibly know why.

                    Do You probably know how many times I checked to insure my infant son was breathing only to wake him up? Or just let him sleep on my chest/lap/next-to-me, where I could just watch him breath and sleep? Mom cops to having done the same with me and my sisters, both grandmothers with our parents and their siblings. It is a mom (and honestly a dad, too) thing.

                    1. I was so afraid of SID that I co-slept with my baby daughter for a couple of weeks, after we came home from the hospital. My daughter and I did the same with Wee Jamie, the Wonder Grandson.

                    2. SID’s terrified me. So, yes, I get it.

                      Also, made grandma super mad. The crib handed down went straight to salvage. No way did even come close to meeting safety standards. Her gripe was 9 infants/toddlers survived using the crib (her 3, me and my siblings, and finally, her youngest 3 boys). High probability the crib was used when grandma and grandpa got it. FWIW, my sisters, and cousins, all concurred with where it went, and why.

        1. “It’s easy to say something sucks, but if you don’t understand why something has succeeded in spite of sucking you will never be able to create something better.”

          — Matt Mullenweg (founder of WordPress)

      2. Speech and Debate is something that anyone in a leadership position in the military should take. The process of defending a position, especially one opposed to your principles, is excellent training for being able to put you inside the mind of the enemy.

      3. Early 80’s, in High School, I had a Gov’t and World History teacher, Mr Lombard, who could argue politically, both sides well, but was a leftoid. Our Spanish teacher, Mrs Artella (“Be warned, I’m teaching you Mexican Spanish, so if you go on the class trip to Madrid, you will be teased by Spaniards”) was the school “Warhawk” (what Mr. Lombard called her in their lounge “debates”, she called him a “Bleeding Heart”) and a few of our other teachers were somewhat political (one ran for Sheriff, a few others for county board) but as I didn’t pay close attention to such, and with the way they acted, I couldn’t tell you their politics. Today, you almost have to default to them being an effing full leftoid, until proven otherwise. I know a few teachers (family and extended family, former neighbors etc) who are not mad commies, and one HAD to hide it much of her career (now retired). So yeah, can’t imagine surviving school today.

  1. No with bells on and a little mandolin.

    I’m yoinking that one… With attribution, if you wish; but you might not like all the places I hang out…

  2. My dad retired from being a EE, took advantage of free tuition at my mom’s college, got his teaching certificate, and spent ten years as a math teacher.

  3. I’m old enough to remember when they called Reagan a Nazi. And both Bushes. And John McCain. And Mitt Romney. And Bob Dole. And Newt Gingrich. And Donald Trump.

    Andrew Breitbart had it dead right. War. Screw these people. No mercy. No quarter. Oderint dum metuant.

      1. It has been war, since at least the Bush loyalists deliberately sabotaging Reagan’s first Interior Secretary. (But probably since Republican Party apparatus decided it would rather throw the election than support Goldwater. My memory just doesn’t go back that far.)

        In the “nice nineties”, Bill Clinton accused us of burning down black churches. Tom Daschel accused us of poisoning the water supply. The government straight up assassinated Vicki Weaver (and never forget that Bill Barr is the reason the bleepard who pulled the trigger didn’t swing). There was a pyre of innocents in Waco. “Policy decisions” drove farmers, miners and ranchers into bankruptcy in job lots. The establishment of the Republican Party refused to let most of The Contract With America come up for a vote, and they tossed Gingrich overboard for a corrupt pedophile on trumped up grounds.

        I could continue.

        At the rate TPTB are going, they’re going to inadvertently retcon Tim McVeigh into a folk hero.

            1. In this country, a little further back than that. The Anti-Federalists were right.

              1. Hmmm. I’m a federalist. But I want the absolute least amount of federalism possible, with a fairly high level of safety, security, and prosperity, and still have the level of liberty to enjoy them fully.

              2. Well, the Democrats “Claim” that their Party was founded by Thomas Jefferson, one of the leading Anti-Federalists. [Crazy Grin]

            2. Look, I’m as ready to condemn the Left as any human alive, but “since John Adams” might be going a little far. This cultural/societal war has been going on only since the socialist movement was born in the mid-nineteenth century — and even then, it didn’t have to become a war.

              No, hear me out, please.

              The modern, socialist Left got started in 1848, the “year that Europe burned.” And at first it had some good ideas. The old aristocracy was tapped out, completely incapable of ruling an industrialized world competently, and heredity was always a rotten basis for political succession anyway. With the old aristocracy in ruins, the reformers had two possible courses of action. One was to use the principles developed in North America to give Europe a viable, long-lasting representative democracy, run by the ordinary people through elected representatives who were themselves ordinary people. The other was to set themselves up as a new ruling class, a new aristocracy, and take all power themselves. Sadly, they chose the second course. They were able to see the flaws in the concept of a hereditary ruling class, but not the flaws in the concept of having a ruling class at all. Everything they’ve done since then has been working toward the goal of establishing themselves as that new ruling class, ruling the rest of us the way the kings of old ruled their kingdoms.

              That goal, that desire, is what made it a war.

              But none of that changes the fact that those original reformers had some good points. The old ways really were tapped out. The new industrial world’s working class really were getting shafted six ways from Sunday. Something new really was needed. If only they’d known when to say “enough,” this war might never have happened. But they didn’t. Fanatics never do.

    1. Many years ago I endured a painful afternoon with a bunch of my in-laws, all Massachusetts liberals, as they breezily assured each other that Dole was just too silly for any really intelligent person to take seriously. (Disclaimer: this does NOT include my late mother-in-law. She got an RV and actually saw most of the country outside the Northeast, including Alaska. Lord, I miss her).

      1. But they would have been glad to sacrifice Mr Dole in WWII and enjoy the freedom his efforts helped to preserve – it was a miracle he survived and lived to be a Senator and presidential candidate, and finally passed last year at age 98. RIP

      1. 🙂 Good take on a classic. I think I’d change “Dems” to “Tech Lords”, if only to avoid redundancy, but I won’t quibble.

    2. Well, to be fair, the Bushes and John McCain were Nazis.
      So they got some of those right, by accident.

      1. You need a new dictionary. Global corporatists* is what they are (were).

        Corporatists only because, learning from Willie Sutton, they went where the money is. No nickel and dime protection rackets for them.

        1. These despicable fools gave our incipient fascists all the tools and cover they needed, and right now they’re happily caucusing with the closest thing we’ve got to actual Nazis. I’d say that’s close enough for government work.

          1. Aspiring fascists and their communist siblings had all the tools they needed long before Bush and McCain. The words “civil forfeiture” should come to mind. Expansion of the federal government to pursue a fascist style, if not outright communist style of socialism, had its start in Wilson. FDR greatly expanded it and was the first to enable vast federal power to usurp private property rights, etc.

            The next great expansion of the war on the citizenry was the enactment of RICO and particularly civil forfeiture laws on the federal and state levels (i have no problem with criminal forfeiture, after a criminal prosecution for a real crime, as opposed to a “technical violation of law”, and a guilty verdict based upon the beyond a reasonable doubt standard), which require the person whose property is being taken by government prove that the government can’t take the property. Thus, without even trying to pursue a criminal case, property is seized without warning in civil forfeiture and the government must be sued, at great expense, to get it back, with the burden of proof not on government but on the person asserting rights against the government.

            Even worse, the RICO, both criminal and civil, are so broad that technical violation of minor laws can be rolled into a RICO case and civil forfeiture, and often are. There is a good reason that people opposed to the RICO and forfeiture laws warned that before long the consequences of the laws would be rued by the vast majority of citizens. One of the worst rulings ever by the Supreme Court and various lower federal courts and the state courts, was to uphold civil forfeiture laws rather than tossing them out as the constitutional abominations that they are.

            Don’t be surprised when the HarrisBiden DOJ and partisan hacks like NY’s AG Leticia James (if not bounced from office) pursue civil forfeiture against anyone association with Trump, Republicans and indeed all political opponents. It will be used against parents protesting at school board meetings, people who donate to groups and campaigns that oppose Democrats, etc. Just look at what Canada is doing under their fascist dictator, Trudeau.

            1. I remember when civil forfeiture became a thing in the 80’s and my war on drugs hawk dad was concerned. But not concerned enough. It was one of the things that drove me to the LP. For all the good the LP as a P has ever done before they went leftard.

            2. Let’s not forget the Red Flag laws, the latest “guilty without trial” violation of multiple amendments. 😦

              1. “The civil asset forfeiture laws were enacted, in the United States, before the country was even formed.”

                Quite true. Of course, their abuse by the Crown were listed in the Declaration as justifying boog…. and prompted the 5th Amendment, 8th Amendment, and even the Third Amendment, since a favorite form was making an uppity Patriot assume the care and feeding of uninvited guests,

                And that 1825 Court had no problems with other forms of slavery….. Not the best cite.

                1. While I’d have to see explicit support of that claim, since it’s not listed by that name in the document, it’s notable that even if your claim is correct, they did keep the laws.

                  Quartering troops is not civil asset forfeiture.

                  The 5th amendment does not ban asset forfeiture. (that “due process of law” thing)

                  The third, again, quartering troops is not CAF.

                  The 8th is, again, not CAF, it’s about excessive bail and excessive fines.
                  (It has been invoked in cases of criminal asset forfeiture, where someone has been found guilty, generally where the profits from crime was… ah… generously interpreted.)

                  And that 1825 Court had no problems with other forms of slavery….. Not the best cite

                  How charming, you’re now adopting the progressive argument of “there was slavery, thus wrong.”
                  Your response suggests you didn’t even click through and skim, at that.

    3. A few years ago, a couple of my younger co-workers were talking politics, and one of them dropped the “we fight Nazis” line.

      I leaned over. “Kid, only one of us in this room has actually, physically beat up Nazis in recent years, and it’s for damned sure not you.”

    4. Global Warming/ClimateChange/EmergencyPanicNameoftheWeekSurrenderYourLibertyFortheGreaterGood doesn’t scare me after all, according to that lot, we all died in the Nuclear War of 1982.. or was it 1983? And yet, I can recall all those years after. Huh.

      1. I could make a case that the modern Left is actually extreme far right, wearing the old Left of the 19th century as a skin-suit. They’re clericists and crypto-aristocrats who are to the right of the Monarchists – instead of this new-fangled “Absolute Monarchism” they favor the older version where kings are merely the first among equals to the great nobles, along with a more medieval social structure in general.

        What would the Latin be for “Skin-suit wearers must be destroyed”?

    5. Democrats called Tom Dewey a Nazi-in 1948. The only thing that has changed is that the Democrats no longer have any people who even purport to be against totalitarian socialism; they all now avidly support it while denouncing their opponents as what Democrats themselves are acting as.

  4. Just a comment on the SF “singularity” term, I view it the same way that I view the “real aliens” stuff. (Some people see “real aliens” as beings that humans can never understand.)

    If you want to write stories set after the singularity happens (or want to write about “real aliens”), you got a very big problem.

    IE How do you get readers to connect with “after the singularity humans” and with “real aliens”?

    Oh, I’m wondering how many Lefties are “real aliens”. 😈

    1. On the one hand, mystery certainly has a place with depictions of aliens. If we come across creatures that have been civilized for millions of years, much less beings that have developed in our universe without any contact, it would be very surprising if we don’t learn anything from them, or if there isn’t any mystery.

      On the other hand, we can understand most creatures on Earth fairly well. We know what they’re after in life, so we sort of understand their set of motivations. We can relate pretty well to mammals, but we can also relate to creatures that have next to nothing to do with us genetically/tree-of-life, like octopi.

      1. Nod, mystery about the nature of some aliens is a good thing.

        Of course, when it comes to aliens, I’m of the opinion that the major differences will be cultural differences which is the same problem that some people having in understanding other humans. 😉

          1. And it’s possible to have an intelligence that is completely different from ours. That’s like saying you have a triangle that’s completely different from another. What do they have in common that makes them both triangles?

          1. There are beings in the universe billions of years older than either of our races. Once, long ago, they walked among the stars like giants, vast and timeless. They taught the younger races, explored beyond the Rim, created great empires. But to all things, there is an end. Slowly, over a million years, the First Ones went away. Some passed beyond the stars, never to return. Some simply disappeared.

    2. “Achieve the singularity and you can be like God, knowing good and evil.”
      Seems like more of the Same Old Thing, frankly.

    3. I always (mis) understood The Singularity to be the moment when we are all hooked into a big computer network sort of thing with micro-chips in our brains, and become sort of a giant global computer.

      Having read way too much cyber-punk type distopian sci-fi back in the ’80s, and having watched a lot of classic Dr. Who, my response has always been: NO Flaming WAY!!!!!!! Do these people not read sci-fi?

      1. Do these people not read X (sci-fi, history, philosophy, any work of human derived fiction speaking to our challenges and dangers) has been one of the things that floors me about the past 4 years.

        We knew where it was going. Every bit of collective cultural memory pretty much directly proclaimed in neon-sparking letters that this was the road to various flavors of hell. These other lunatics couldn’t not know.

        1. These people stepped blithely and arrogantly into the roles that their own art, decades of it, clearly set up as the bad guys, proclaimed the evil of.

      2. Unfortunately the infection of SF means that only ever the worst possible aspects of a technology are allowed to be depicted.

        Plus, you know, fiction.

        1. Agreed.

          It just occurred to me how many of Arthur C. Clark’s stories are based around the singularity, before the singularity was even a thing.
          And the creepier ones tended to work better.

      3. “You want me to get a brain implant that turns life into High School forever? Explain why anyone should LET your head remain attached your body for THAT criminal, horrific idea!”

      4. Singularity in general means the point beyond which things are so radically different we have no way of knowing what lies beyond it. It can refer to technology (superhuman intelligence) as easily as black holes

    1. Sounds like the legendary book on classroom leadership and discipline that everyone knows about and we all swear we never read and never saw a copy of (should anyone from Outside ever inquire.)

        1. Violence should never be a part of your tool kit as an NCO.

          What is unspoken is “mostly because you shouldn’t have to go back to your tool kit if you’re dealing with someone that only the right kind of pain and suffering will get their attention.”

    2. Love that one. The novels are great too, since, they expand the world so much more.

  5. I’ve actually got a lot of things to say about the sci-fi concept of the “singularity”, but it’s not quite on topic for the post. Text walls in comment sections-sort-of-stuff. One other odd corner of the culture where I’ve got objections to everyone’s side of the imaginary exercise.

    Same with the aliens.

    One of these days I’m going to have to write my own books.

    1. So, the singularity:

      Dorothy up above referenced that line from Genesis: ““Achieve the singularity and you can be like God, knowing good and evil.”

      I’m personally of the heretical opinion (for which I’ll make no apology until I see the error of it) that wherever the lie is in that promise, there is a lot of truth in it: We sit here in our homes, in fantastic comfort and wealth, secured by the control of powers that ancient mankind would have trouble imagining for his gods, because our minds are not impotent. We can look at the world, and understand it, and through that understanding contrive to solve our problems. Both the world we live in, and the Platonic world of mathematics, are comprehensible: there is order to it. We’re not omnipotent, but we also are not helpless. We’re not (usually, when we can help it) the playthings of fate, or of vast historical forces. Tragedy and disaster still randomly strike us, but over the course of human history, the process of understanding things has helped us to slowly start winning.

      I became an engineer because of the prospect of discovering and building things that would extend the reach of mankind. The ability to think has given us so much – the ability to think more clearly, and better, should allow us to handle problems that are currently beyond our reach.

      That’s where I agree with the “singularity” crowd, and depart from the usually “conservative” worldview.

      There are two areas where I disagree.

      (part two buffering … )

      1. Where I disagree:
        The sort of future that the singularity people imagine starts in the sort of aspirational direction I’d like to go, but then starts diverging. AI is where they sort of jump the shark IMO. (Or it’s symptomatic of how their deeper philosophy jumps the shark.) Rather than “and then we will be as gods”, they become the cultists of a sort of external god. They don’t end up imagining extending the reach of men, until we have the power and clarity of thought (achieved through whatever tools) to encompass superhuman problems. Instead they seem to want to retreat from thinking, delegate thinking to some other agency (usually some sort of superhuman AI). Rather than the computer as a tool to help them think, they want the computer to do their thinking for them. Their utopian vision, in the end, whenever it is made explicit, involves men being minded like children (or swept aside), and the robot gods having all the agency and power. Our brains would be vestigal organs, and we’d be dong the equivalent of the monkey hitting the cocaine button.

        They seem to exult in the incomprehensibility of the mess that their robot god would make of the world. It’d be too subtle and complicated, it would leave us helpless to understand the resulting mess. Rather than developing subtle techniques to do things, which requires experience and understanding, build a robot god (some assembly required) that generates a bunch of magitech that you then wouldn’t have to understand. Just mash the cocaine button.

        (Prometheus didn’t give men a free lunch, he taught them how to light a fire.)

        (Part 3 …)

        1. The other thing is the assumption that giving men power is entirely sweetness and light. Beyond mindless natural evil, there is human evil. With great power comes the ability to screw things up at scale. There is this. There is also the objection that understanding how to manipulate the world doesn’t tell you what you should be manipulating it towards. The transhumanist/singularity people seem to go along with a sort of elitism where they think that the “right sort” of people need to build the robot god first, before anyone else builds it wrong. I think elitism is the fastest way to ensure that something is used for evil. If you can buy it in a hardware store, joe average has a better chance of using it for a benevolent purpose than some committee of the self-important.

          We can see this in our history. (If we lock up nuclear technology as something too dangerous to allow the common men to use, ironically, the only thing we’ll ever do with our uranium is blow each other up.)

          On the other hand, I think it is a slander (and a nasty one) against mankind to claim that horror is the inevitable result of empowering people. We did, actually, before our lovely rulers clamped down, build fission power reactors and nuclear submarines, in the hopes of putting this awesome power to a life-sustaining use, instead of a destructive one.

          One of the tragic things about the nihilists trying to enslave the world is that they’ve bent biotechnology, something that really only got powerful in the last 10 years, towards the purpose of indiscriminately killing people. It’s a hideous misuse of something that other people had been using to build spider-silk extruding yeast, and glow-in-the-dark fish, and might one day be used to fix serious biological problems or manufacture extremely complex chemicals in something you can grow in a mason jar, generate combustion fuel from sunlight, etc. Real life nanotechnology. The assholes got it first, and the reaction to their crimes might ensure it never falls into the hands of people who would do good with it.

          1. While Poul Anderson didn’t call it, “the Singularity,” he had thr idea down, and it depressed him. See, “Genesis,” for example, where the AIs slowly achieve power and mankind withers away because we are no longer needed – the “sophotects,” can do everything we can, plus many things we can’t. Some human minds upload into the network, but they are made part of the whole, without power.
            Perhaps the most depressing thing he ever wrote.

    2. Write down everything.
      Bits and pieces, scenes, ideas, scraps of dialog. It seems to me that every professional writer has a file drawer of odd stuff they’ve done over the years, for every published novel they have. Practice, practice, practice.
      Which reminds me. I need to make a backup or two of my writing files.

  6. Sarah, I think you misread Hinderaker’s objections to Trump as the 2024 nominee. Which I agree with.

    The man has an awful lot of negatives. Such as a chronic inability to let the chance to insult someone pass by. Greater-than-normal difficulty selecting competent subordinates.

    On top of this, I can lay out the Propaganda Press’ script. He gets nominated, and the Propaganda Press will ‘discover’ that the response to COVID was panicked. Put a publicity-loving incompetent Fraud-ci in charge. Failed to organize a “Red Team” to double-check findings and policy. Turned over much of the response to state and local governments who were even MORE panicked. And left office with a “vaccine” that was neither safe nor effective. All that makes for a hell of a hammer to hit Trump with.

    No. If the Populist movement is to succeed, it MUST be bigger than any one man. DeSantis, Youngkin, or Pompeo could all step in and lead.

    Trump was our William Wallace…but now we need a Robert the Bruce to lead us to a permanent victory.

    1. The man has a lot of positives. Like not knifing US in the back. Are you sure, say, DeSantis wouldn’t?
      As for can’t pass up a chance to insult? BAH. COmpared to the left Trump is politeness itself.
      REMEMBER Obama’s middle finger.
      No sale.

      1. Also I think it is supremely idiotic to think “The reason the leftists attacked Trump is because of his mean tweets”. I have a normally very sensible friend who keeps saying that, and my response is “No, the reason they attacked (and still attack) Trump is because he got in the way of their supreme power grab.” The same would happen with DeSantis or any other supposed savior.

        Furthermore, anyone not a billionaire would be bankrupted by their continual lawfare. DeSantis has very little money so he would be gutted immediately. It has to be someone very wealthy.

      2. This.

        Trump tried very hard to keep his promises, and mostly succeeded.
        Where he failed, both parties joined forces in opposition.
        Politics is transactional, and he has earned excellent credit.

        He insults people who deserve it?

        The democrats demonize him?
        They demonize anyone who opposes them.
        Or even doesn’t support them enthusiastically enough.

        He had trouble finding honest people who could effectively push his agenda?
        This is my shocked face.
        Who’da thought that someone who fought for power would be loathe to give it up?

      3. I read a thread that indicated that TPTB of GOPe are promoting DeSantis for NeverTrump reasons, and if D isn’t successful or doesn’t buy into their act, would go with Youngkin.

        Seems to be Paul Ryan and McCarthy doing this behind Trump’s back, and the DeSanctimonious dig was a revelation that he sees what they are doing, so they’re getting a shot across the bow.

        I notice that Sundance at CTH doesn’t seem all that thrilled with DeSantis.

    2. Your “negatives” seem more a matter of taste than substance. You spend a deal of time war gaming what the incompetent left is going to do when we nominate then elect POTUS Trump in 2024–this feels defeatist rather than reasoned.

      No to all you’ve said. Just nope. Trump is our champion. And if he isn’t available, we will find another.

      1. Not defeatist. It’s good strategy to figure out the enemy lines of attack, figure out how you will counter them.

        And some of us think the best counter is to get a different point man.

        1. The Democrats and News Media will find (or manufact) flaws no matter who is our Point Man.

          Old Joke about the News Media.

          President [Republican] walks on water, the News Media screams President [Republican] Can’t Swim!

            1. Taking the Enemies “advice” is one of the worst mistakes we can make.

              1. And the second bit of bad advice is taking counsel of one’s fears–to be so afraid of what might happen that you don’t take action. I prefer John Paul Jones somewhat less famous line: “He who will not risk, can not win.”

              1. Stick legally? No. But politics is perception, and they have found a lot of stuff that stuck to Trump in terms of perception. There is a mountain of attacks — lies, sure, but in politics if it sticks it wins — such as him calling Nazis “fine people”. Stuff that they don’t even need to argue any more, but merely invoke, because it metastasized in the public consciousness. People still think he collided with Russia despite it being solidly proven that not only did he not, but Hillary did. Doesnt matter; Trump collided with Russia.

                It’s the Big Lie all over again. The left has been doing it for over a Century and they’re very very good at it.

                I’m more a Kari Lake guy than Desantis; it’s truly terrible that they stole that election. But what do you expect when her opponent was literally in charge of the vote count?

          1. I will admit, the only reason I’m cautious about Trump 2024 is he’s only about two years younger than Biden. A lot can happen in two years.

            But that’s a bridge to cross if we get there.

            1. and people don’t age at the same rate. Most visible in the extremes. My dad is much older than Biden and yet much clearer of mind and speech. In fact, he’s still all there. I’ve often noted very dumb people — BIDEN — tend to age faster, mentally.
              Mind you so can geniuses, but that’s not germane to Biden’s case.

        2. See VDH’s =The Savior Generals=. That said, we don’t need to make up our minds about 2024 for, oh, six to nine months.

        1. But I don’t want a meaner tweeter. I want someone who is much harder-nosed in action.

          I’ve always believed that you never make a threat. Nor a threat and say, “That’s not a threat, it’s a promise.” You strike…as hard as possible. Hit hard, hit where it counts, keep hitting until your opponent goes down and STAYS down…immobile.

          1. Not a threat, exactly; give the enemy a choice:

            “I could fight your army, but why should I kill all those soldiers? They didn’t start this war. You did. So, I am here to deal with you. Now end this battle and withdraw your forces immediately.”

            “What if I don’t?”

            “Then I kill you and repeat this whole routine with whoever takes your place. Eventually somebody will have the sense to agree, and I get to go home.”

          2. What did you think a culture war was going to be fought with? There was not a single time when Trump threatened to tweet. He simply tweeted.

            Have a lollipop.

          3. There’s much discussion (a great deal of it at Powerline, among others) about “Trump can do only 4 years, would 8 years of DeSantis be better than 4 years of Trump then 8 years of DeSantis?”

            I’m up for another 4 years of Trump, THEN we’ll see who is worthy enough to follow him, because I believe Trump has earned a Phd. in “D.C.” and earned it the hard way – he now knows absolutely everyone there cannot be trusted one iota, will be smart enough to bring all his own people, and will approach The Problem with a determination to succeed and just enough ruthlessness to accomplish it.

            I care not who, or what, he ridicules because having grown up there, attended school in the area, and worked in D.C. for decades, I’m firmly of the belief there’s nothing wrong with Washington, D.C. that could not be fixed with very large strategic nuclear weapons.

            Trump is Our Nuke. (I’m assuming Slow Joe and Princess Kneepads don’t sufficiently antagonize Moscow, Bejing or Tehran in the meantime to provoke them into doing it with actual nukes).

            The country’s name is “The United States of America” not “America with a huge central government and 50 insignificant political subdivisions.”

            There’s a lot wrong with each of the 50 states as well, but that’s for the residents of each state to deal with as they see fit, and eliminating the thoroughly corrupt influence of Washington, D.C. malfeasance upon the states is the first step to correcting what’s wrong in the states (and this includes working to repeal the 16th and 17th amendments).

            So, yeah, bring Trump on, with all the bombast and disrespect he delivers. I’m not suggesting DeSantis would make a good vice president, he might, but given the amount of ruthlessness necessary to correct the D.C. problem, which will be cried about incessently in the worthless media, it’s probably better to bring in a completely fresh team in 2028 because “Trump” will spillover to the VP and the @&$% media just lurves itself some “guilt by association” to crow about. And, if Trump has the good people he needs, a few of them will begin laying the groundwork for that with, and after, the 2026 mid-terms.

            In the meantime, DeSantis can continue turning Florida into Independent and Conservative Mecca and we can see what other governors might have some promise on the national stage.

            1. Have you considered the fact that if Trump wins in 2024, he will be a lame duck from the minute he enters office? Since we installed the two-term limit, no President has ever accomplished more in his second term than he did in his first.

              1. It seems like a label without a basis. A reason for defeat before we begin.

                And I also think DeSantis is going to be a disappointment as a POTUS contender but that’s speculation at this stage.

              2. Heh. You realize that Trump was a lame duck for his entire first term? He still managed to get a lot done. His weakness was much of it was by executive order, which is very transient, especially in such a bureaucratic swamp. The never Trump RINOs did their best to sabotage any legislative measures to increase the durability of those changes. Frankly, the GOP needs a means of expelling members like Romney and Cheney for betrayal.

                1. Don’t let your appreciation for what Trump did accomplish blind you to his failings.

                  Trump had so few legislative successes because Trump, being Trump, never understood that Congress is not one of his hirelings. Insulting and belittling your own party’s congressional leaders never ends well. It’s certainly possible that they would have sabotaged his initiatives even if he had played nice… but we’ll never know about that, because he didn’t.

                  1. Like the ones that started out by trying to sabotage his campaign? They needed to be insulted, belittled and so much more. Trump knows how to do business, and make deals, but — “Negotiating with an enemy that can’t be trusted is just plain stupid.”

                  2. Who’s paying you? Your comment is so blind I’m wondering if you’re not working for the other side.

                    1. Eh. Look, people are entitled to think what they will. I personally am not that far in love with Trump that I won’t consider anyone else.
                      The thing is I dislike the fact that the establishment has been PUSHING DeSantis since early 2021. THey always tells us who they’ll trust.
                      There’s also a certain unease at the commentariat, particularly close-to-never-Trump sections of it, like Powerline, being all in on DeSantis.
                      The associations don’t fill me with glee.
                      Also I think they’re misreading the voters. The voters will go Trump given the chance. There’s no point trying to split it.

                    2. I’m finding it a lot harder to live up to my fundamental live and let live when it comes to Trump. I worked for a guy exactly like him, though somewhat less wealthy. There’s an emotional connection that sends me into REEEEEE pretty quickly.
                      Then I breathe, and it’s ok.
                      And I’m hearing and reading of people who support DeSantis that give me pause as well.
                      Any doubt about voters for Trump might want to watch a rally. Miami today was something special even for him.

                    3. There’s a home on my way to church that is covered in Trump Won, Trump 2024, etc. and it’s not unique.

                      “Stand up straight, with your shoulders back.” Jordan B. Peterson


                    4. Compared to the Obama, Biden, Fetterman, Rally? No kidding. Let’s see if I can properly quote what was (more or less) said on the Five:

                      “Obama, Biden, and Fetterman, have a rally that has 5,000 or so attendees in a stadium that holds 10,000. Trump has a rally in a town with a population of 6,000 or so, has a rally of 17,000, nearly tripling the towns population.” (Actual comparison, “doubling town population” … Apologizing in advance for the math but 17 is closer to 3 x 6 than 2 x 6.)

                      And, I don’t even know the content of either rally. I can guess, but I don’t know.

                    5. It was so sad, so sad to see the big black curtain dividing the pathetic crowd from the rest of the empty facility.

                    6. All I can say here is to repeat that “I Oppose The Current Thing” is as NPCish as “I Support The Current Thing”. Don’t form your opinions based on the valence of the opinions of others; that’s the whole point of critical thinking. Otherwise you end up sounding like the 90s goth teenager who said “I can’t like The Cure anymore, they’re too popular.” 🙂

                    7. Oh, I’m not working for anyone. I’m just weird. No, I mean really weird. Even for an SF fan. Even for an Odd SF fan. (Sarah, you might recall that recently I said I don’t feel at home in any political group that I’ve ever encountered. Well, this is one of the reasons why.) My view of the world is composed of varying amounts of Star Trek (primarily Surak as interpreted by Diane Duane), nexialism, evolutionary theory, conservatism, conservationism, Zen, the Constitution, the Tao Te Ching, Sun-tzu, and the Book of G’Kar. Among many other things, that particular combination means that unless I’m really, REALLY mad, I’m almost compelled to look at any issue from all sides. With Trump, that means I like a lot of what he did, but I have very little respect for the man himself, and I’m not blind to the mistakes he made. He accomplished a lot, but a President who believed the same things and knew how to work with Congress could have accomplished much more.

                      I’m still not sure what to make of DeSantis, but I am sure of one thing: for MY United States, he can’t be any worse than another Democrat would be. In 2016, Larry Correia said that the election that year struck him as a choice between brain cancer and colon cancer. I agreed with him then, and still do now. The Democratic Party is brain cancer; the Republican Party is colon cancer. Only the latter offers any significant chance of survival.

                    8. I thought of the book “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance “as I read your list of influences. My irreverent streak shining through!

                      All I can say is thank heaven for differences of opinion. I can’t disagree with the reasonableness of your take on things, it’s just very different from mine.

                      I just got off a conference call with a bunch of praying MAGA-type people. We agreed that the worst RINO is a sellout, and the best D is evil.

                      I have Tuesday off so I can obsess over something I can’t control. Gonna be a great day. 😁

                    9. I thought of the book “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance “as I read your list of influences. My irreverent streak shining through!

                      All I can say is thank heaven for differences of opinion. I can’t disagree with the reasonableness of your take on things, it’s just very different from mine.

                      I just got off a conference call with a bunch of praying MAGA-type people. We agreed that the worst RINO is a sellout, and the best D is evil.

                      I have Tuesday off so I can obsess over something I can’t control. Gonna be a great day. 😁

                  3. I think you’re wrong. If you talk to the people who worked for him, that’s not his modus operandi. And it was OBVIOUS from the beginning they wanted him out. Only slightly less (?) than the left did.

                  4. Forgive my rudeness, please. I can only claim the circumstances have my emotions on overdrive.

                  5. Swings both ways. And if you’re handing out blame, the Congress critters deserve more of it than The Donald, since they’re game players from day 1 and should have worked with him in spite of their personal objections; assuming of course, that they have the best interests of the country in mind, and not their inflated egos. I realize that their egos will never equal Orange Man’s, but then he’s an entire magnitude ahead of them.

                  6. Trump had so few legislative successes because Trump, being Trump, never understood that Congress is not one of his hirelings.

                    The underlying assumption here is that anyone else would have done better. This is a presumption made, so far as I can see, without evidence. Also, I think even if it were true, I think you have the causal arrow reversed. People didn’t refuse to work with Trump because he insulted them. He insulted them because they refused to work with him.

                    1. And I’ve seen people I tend to believe say that he would have been happy to make deals with the Democrats, but when he realized they weren’t interested he went his own way.
                      I think people don’t realize the power speaking well of people has. Trump regularly says he loves the American people. We sure don’t hear that from the other guys.

                    2. I’m one of those people. Trump’s business history is all about making deals. But if the other side won’t deal at all, let alone in good faith, well then….

                    3. To be honest, I think it flowed both ways. He made them mad, they made him mad, and neither side was adult enough to swallow their pride and place the nation’s well-being above their own egos.

                    4. It’s worse than that. I believe they consider him an apostate. Their politics are a religious fanaticism and rejected it. They thought he was one of them and was only running to clear the path for Hillary. He was a New Yorker; he couldn’t possibly be a Republican.
                      Then he fought for the Presidency and won. He actually defeated their chosen champion and denied their victory. Then he had the audacity to actually govern in a extremely (to them) conservative manner.
                      That’s why they hate him. It has nothing to do with mean tweets.

            2. “will be smart enough to bring all his own people, ”

              The problem, of course, is that Trump / DeSantis / whoever won’t be permitted to do that under the current rule / laws. How will they stop it? Let us count the ways:

              Background checks, especially for non-military appointments, are currently conducted by the three letter agencies (FBI / CIA / NSA). When Trump started naming his people last time, there were several stories about how many were “failing background checks” conducted by the same people who brought us Russiagate. Do you think they won’t do the exact same thing again? And those background checks are required either by laws / regulations to grant security clearance or its’ equivalent. Can the President bypass them without various bureaucrats refusing to carry out his appointees’ instructions? We’ll see.
              Threats to livelihoods / careers: There is already an organized campaign to file spurious bar association complaints against any attorney who has ever represented Donald Trump. We’ve also seen this in other licensed professions, such as medicine, for “COVID deniers” or those against child mutilation. Academia need not even be mentioned.

              The remedy there is two-fold: First, Red state governors need to lead a concerted charge to withdraw licensing / accreditation authority from organizations like the AMA and ABA that have been corrupted. Second, each of us needs to start asking any doctor / lawyer / whtever profession direct questions about where they stood or stand on these issues, and refuse to patronize the ones whose actions or answers are been unsatisfactory.

              Direct intimidation: there have been several instances, particularly in blue areas, where no one was willing to even start to accept an offer for posts because as soon as anyone heard about it (which is another reason #1 was an issue; leaks from the checkers) protestors showed up, and threats were made against nominees and families. One example:


              The assignment is to carry out the Trump agenda — industry-friendly and averse to action to combat climate change — in one of the the nation’s most environmentally active states. The post is guaranteed to come with daily confrontation with the state’s battle-ready leaders, not to mention the hordes of protesters who can make just getting to and from work in San Francisco a professional hazard.

              “The saying goes that there are nine EPA regions and then there is Region 9,” said Jared Blumenfeld, who ran that office during the Obama administration.

              The passion of the scientists, enforcement officers and others who work in California, he said, has made it “nearly impossible for Trump to recruit” someone “to stand in front of the 900 EPA professionals in Region 9 and lead them and the agency over the precipice. It would be a fool’s errand,” he said.

                1. Let me guess, you set off your points with a number and a dot. For some reason WPDE started eating any number-and-dot combinations at the beginning of a line.

                  If you want to start a line with a number, and put a dot after it, you have to use the HTML code for a period:


                  to get this:

                  1. A line
                  2. Another line

              1. RE: The FBI / CIA / NSA, et al.

                Last I looked, those aree all Executive Branch agencies. To whom do the Executive Branch agencies report? And, does that person control, or not control, whom actually runs an Executive Branch agency?

                OK, so the Senate slow walks (read: commits Dereliction of Constitutional Duty) whomever a 2024 Trump nominates to head an agency; does that agency simply stop working, or does whomever was second, or third, or eighteenth, in command assume responsibility for managing that agency? Maybe it comes down to the Fifth Floor Junior Office Boy, but someone will be in charge, and I’ll bet they snap to, salute and say “yes sir” when the President calls them. If not, then they’re history just like everyone before them and the Prez calls the Fourth Floor Junior Office Boy (or Girl, we’re not being sexist here).

                1. Exactly. Trump calls for immediate resignation of top people in the triple alphabet agencies. Based on past history, specifically 2016 to now, that might mean multiple resignations in the agency. He puts his people in place pending confirmation. Hopefully with the 2020 shake up, at least until 2026, President Trump has cooperative House and Senate. Everyone else can scream until they are blue in the face (like their politics).
                  Scream, “I’m moving out of the US!!!!!!”
                  Only responses are: “Please!” and “Don’t let the door hit your ass on the way out.”

                    1. Right? With an escort across either northern or southern border (they can choose). Once across the border, demand their passports, take them, stamp “no return”, and have it so entered in the appropriate databases. If Canada or Mexico does not want them staying? That is Canada and Mexico’s problem. I’d say a one way trip to Russia and China, but … Put on an ocean boat (not yacht), and not let them land in any ports of the US or territories. Ideas keep coming.

                2. And you would be right— if the laws actually applied. But they were Executive Branch in 2016, weren’t they? How did that work out again? We all saw how that worked out.

                3. They snap, say “yes sir”, refer the matter of how to carry out the order to a committee that exists for the purpose of never making a decision, and then ignore the instruction.

                  It’s hard to prove incompetence, Civil servants have legal protections that make them virtually impossible to fire (in the name of fighting corruption via the spoils system).

                  DoD officials openly bragged about lying to Trump with respect to what we were doing in Syria (once the election had been safely stolen).

                  Not to mention the DoJ appointing a special prosecutor to investigate their boss and bury their own misdeeds.

              2. Background checks are NOT conducted by CIA/FBI/NSA. They’re conducted by OPM. They have been for a while. A good while.

                The problem is that all the little Beltway insiders are incestuous globalist twerps who are on an endless cycle of business/government/academia who are dedicated to an agenda other than the preservation and promotion of the United States. And think that they are doing good work thereby.

            3. This.
              I love the bombast and disrespect for those who deserve none. I love that he picks fights and lets no insult go unchallenged.
              He called him “DeSanctimonious” last night and I’m still laughing.

            4. I’d miss the Smithsonian, and the National Archives. But, sacrifices must be made . . .

        2. I do like the DeSantis-Pushaw model. Designate a Twitter/press person, and let that person be the lightning rod. Keep the actually important person looking ‘presidential’ and also allow for a bit of research and ‘felicitous phrasing’ so communications are less subject to the deliberate misinterpretation we have seen for so long.

          Kayleigh McEnany might be wiling to return for Trump.

        3. Historically, Thumper would have fit in perfectly with most of our presidents of the past. The pretty boy politicians of the last few generations are an ANOMALY, not the norm. Put Trump in the same room with any president up to 1900 (possibly up to 1930, but by then we were into the genteel president push) it would be two bulls in a china shop. They knew what they wanted for this country, and NOTHING was going to stand in their way.

          The only thing that kept most of them from being Trump’s fore-runner is that Twitter hadn’t been invented.

      2. I’ll say this, I didn’t really want Trump in 2016. But, I would have voted for a dead dog over HRC, so pulled the lever for Trump.

        In 2020, I voted ENTHUSIASICLY for Trump. If he runs again, I will vote for him again, and hope some changes have finally happened to keep the fraud as close to zero as we can.

        1. 100%.

          2016 I voted against HRC.
          2020 I voted For Trump.
          2024 I will vote for Trump.

          When he wins. My only hope is that he has learned what went wrong the first time, why, and takes the appropriate steps. Well that, and vacate all of Biden’s executive orders. He needs to get things done as a force of law. That takes congress and the senate. Too bad there isn’t a method to take things directly to the people for a vote.

    3. I personally don’t like the cult of personality. I can understand why it exists, but it is dangerous.

      But, given the absurdly low bar of not betraying us, Trump is one of the few people who have cleared it.

      I’m still thinking about it. One thing to consider: Anyone that doesn’t have their own significant independent wealth – wealth that isn’t tied to the patronage of the people seeking to enslave us, can probably be compromised. I’ve seen it happen too often – promises, then some midnight meeting with spooks from some NGO, then humiliating public backstab.

      1. I disagree about corruption. There are some people who Aren’t For Sale. Not at any price.

        The problem is that our political system tends to seek out and promote people who can be bought.

        1. There are some.

          But not that actively seek power over others.
          And the existent power structures actively weed out the few who try to enter the political realm. Scoundrels recognize an honest man as an existential threat.

      2. I’m going to be very blunt. If you don’t like the cult of personality, then pointing fingers at Trump seems a bit short sighted to me.
        Barack Hussein Obama was a master of the cult of personality, and he still works from the sidelines.

        1. I think McCain wanted to be the focus of a cult of personality (did being a POW corrupt him to that extent?). I remember watching him accept the adoration of his supporters when he won the Arizona primary and thinking he was enjoying it way too much.

    4. “Such as a chronic inability to let the chance to insult someone pass by. Greater-than-normal difficulty selecting competent subordinates.”

      Both of these are simply not true.

      Mr. Trump doesn’t insult the undeserving. He’s deeply, personally loyal (and I’ve told my Mr. Trump story here before) and kind.

      The field of known potential subordinates is just that horrifically bad. Short of bringing in people who are total unknowns to everyone, which would lead to accusations of promoting incompetence, where did you expect him to find good subordinates? Look at how many backstabbers he ended up with who had previously appeared to be principled.

      Yes, the movement needs to be bigger, but . . . the future leaders of it are barely getting started at running for office. They’re just starting to see that there is support for them. Anyone in office in 2016 probably falls in the previous category as “appeared to be principled.”

    5. I’ll grant you the subordinate problem. But this:

      Such as a chronic inability to let the chance to insult someone pass by.



    6. If Trump is the nominee for 2024 then I would vote for him. He is certainly better than ANYTHING the Brahmandarins will nominate by several orders of magnitude. But he has some serious issues 1) He has an outscale ego that means he can be maneuvered by playing to that weakness 2) He has massive negatives which although often made up (all that Russia bovine excrement) makes it hard to sell him to independents that are needed for electoral victory in some states 3) he can ONLY serve 1 term, we’re going to need at least 2 to fix this and 3-4 would be better. Sadly Trump can NOT be paired with DeSantis, the changes wrought by the 12th amendment mean the president and VP must have different states of residence and for now both are residents of Florida. Looking briefly there aren’t a lot of good (or maybe any) other choices to pair. Noem from North Dakota has been a RINO turncoat from time to time. Lake the candidate from Arizona looks interesting, but a half term governor (presuming she wins) might be a bit dicey. Maybe Glenn Youngkin of VA (he’s term limited at 2025 so might be interested), The rest of the Republican governors are nobodies or out and out RINOs (Baker of Mass for example makes Romney look like a stalwart conservative). Senators are usually a bad choice as they just don’t tend to have executive skills. Maybe Mike Lee of Utah or Rand Paul of Kentucky (long shot that) MAYBE Ted Cruz (though he has had RINO moments), Maybe Tim Scott. Again the rest are non entities or go along get along RINO types that won’t keep the process rolling. House members, beats me they’re all just pictures to me that tells me they haven’t done much at the national level. Good for their districts, but makes them poor choices as VP that will have to wade in and fight to get the 2nd and 3rd terms and then likely kick ass and take names to get Congress to stay in line. Gould be worse we could be the Democrats. They literally have NOBODY that’s not a screw up or an affirmative action select (Buttigieg I’m looking at you) that’s under 70 (and the 70+ folks are often screw ups too). Does give me qualms about how we get out of this without something really bad going down.

            1. Sadly, you couldn’t be President or Vice President but as the Beautiful But Evil Space Princess, you’d make a good threat.

              IE Behave or you’ll have to deal with the Beautiful But Evil Space Princess. 😈

      1. If DeSantis runs, I will vote for him in the primary. If Trump is the nominee, I will vote for him in the general.

        That said, I agree that Trump has massive negatives, and I think he had his moment and it’s now passed. To use a military analogy, Trump was the shock troops that disrupt the enemy defenses and momentarily send them reeling back. But the whole battle can’t be just shock troops; eventually you need the heavies to solidify the gains and exploit them further.

        Also, it’s time that we had a GenX president, especially one who is experienced at making the wheels of government turn whether they want to or not. Trump tended to order things done, unaware that, unlike in private industry, he would be flat disobeyed and he needed to follow up.

        1. Trump tended to order things done, unaware that, unlike in private industry, he would be flat disobeyed

          Unfortunately true. I’m not sure following up would have helped.

          1. It would have helped. Put the pressure on your Nomenklatura, they put pressure on the Civil Service.

            Pro tip: Get the ability to adjust base cost-of-living adjustments on an agency-by-agency basis. Then use it.

        2. Oh and 5) He is currently 76, would be 78 in 2024, 82 by the time he left office We bitch about the current aged resident of the White house, and Trump seems in better shape, but that is hard job even on the younger candidates.

      2. I don’t mean this too harshly, but Noem is my Governor in South Dakota. If you can’t get the state right, I’ll listen less intently to what you say.

        And while she didn’t do everything right, she gets a lot right. No lockdowns and no mandates.

        Our local turncoat media has been cheerleading the complete assclown Demoncrat running against her.

        I cannot even imagine how bad the state would get if he won.

        I’m certain I’d lose my side job because I’m sure the ass would mandate vaccination.

        Never ever let your state be run by team blue.

        None is pretty good (and also pretty). But she’s definitely from SOUTH Dakota.

        1. My apologies. South Dakota. She did the lock downs right but seemed to cave on other points in particular the trans agenda. That in itself is potentially an issue with parts of the right coalition.

          1. That’s not entirely correct, either. She didn’t “cave.” She told people to be concise, precise, and clear. Not at all the same thing. People wrote bad legislation. That’s not her fault, and she isn’t obligated to adopt it merely to send a message.

            1. Even beyond the question of whether that interpretation of her actions is the correct one (and I’m not convinced that it is), she earlier bailed on the even bigger question of banning “transgender” surgeries on kids, in large part because she’s in the pocket of the biggest health-care provider in SD, and they make a lot of money on that sort of thing. Other strikes against her: 1.) She’s a Thune protegee, which is a huge black mark right there; 2). She was a squish when she was in Congress; 3.) She campaigned against MAGA conservatives in the Republican primaries for the state legislature. Finally, she was for lockdowns before she was against them, and was only stopped because, fortunately for SD, the state legislature had to approve the lockdowns and didn’t.

              1. No, she openly stated she did not have the power to declare lockdowns.

                Also Trans surgeries have not come up yet really for legislation. I don’t think any are done in state.

                Also all abortion clinics are gone from the state and I’ll give her credit for that.

    7. The tactical choice of a replacement Trump is not going to be a viable tactic any time soon.

      Because, you are talking to people who are all “Petain, a Frenchman, is collaborating with the Germans, that means that we cannot trust Frenchmen not to collaborate with the Germans.”

      Whatever tactical benefit you might see coming from replacing DeGaulle, you are strategically trying to collaborate with people who trust DeGaulle, and very few other Frenchman of notable political background.

      The post 2020 Republicans who we can trust as much as we can trust Trump do not yet exist. Anyone else with the current publicity and connections to set up a 2024 campaign has the problem that we now have too much information about everyone else in the Republican party, and they were all hit with the same information weapons that the rest of us were.

      WRT to the damnable lockdown, they were on record as mostly paralyzed by the information war, and refraining from taking a lot of perhaps necessary decisive action. This makes them look like possible collaborators in the tradition of Petain.

      Now, in fact just about every American looks bad on that account, including Trump, but most Americans do not have their befuddled inactivity documented so well as the politicians do.

      The Establishment or Bush Faction Republicans were clearly counting on stabbing Trump in the back, to including collaborating with the Democrat election, terrorism, and disease frauds, as being sufficient to preserve the Bush Faction’s power base against encroachment by Trump Faction. It is easily plausible that this or that person imitating Trump’s behavior is in fact a Bush Faction loyalist who was recruited by the senior Bush Faction leadership.

      The prerequisites for a viable Trump replacement are a) collapse of the Bush faction b) entry of new politicians into the GOP, who can do the job of pretending that they had never believed that Democrats have ever legitimately won the election.

    8. Trump did not put Fauxi in charge; the Lying Lawn Gnome had been in charge of the CDC for 35 years before Trump took office. Until the spring of 2020, that wasn’t a big deal. Just another overpaid bureaucrat of a 3-letter agency. Secretly paying the communist Chinese to modify bat viruses, but nobody knew that at the time and wouldn’t have seen the significance if they did.

      Then Yet Another respiratory virus emerged from China, the Democrats saw their chance to knock Trump down and jumped on it with both feet. COVID Crisis! Deadly Plague! We Are All DOOMED!! Emergency Powers Uber Alles!

      I hear Trump is somewhat of a germophobe, so his reluctance to go against the Medical Authorities is understandable. Unfortunately, half of them were bent on taking over the world and the rest were running around with their hair on fire, all led by the publicity-seeking malignant narcissist that caused the whole problem in the first place.

        1. People tend to forget about Birx, but from what I’ve read, she was the biggest lockdown fanatic of all. Basically the spider at the center of the whole web of Covid-related fuckery. She and Fauci need to be impaled on the same stake.

          1. THe AMA’s lies on the ‘importance’ of tolerating BLM arson and riot was the obvious lie that ensured noncompliance with the mad diktat.

            But, it was Birx’s decision to lie, with malice aforethought, about ‘just two weeks’ that had the earlier effect.

          2. Birx boasted in her own autobiography that was recently released about how she outright lied early and often (including some of which was certainly perjury in testimony) in order to to get the policy she wanted which was a complete lockdown of the country for an extended period. She knew the “only two weeks to flatten the curve” was bogus, and she was open about her desire to manipulate elected officials into enabling her and her fellow unelected career bureaucrats to be given effectively dictatorial power, even over elected officials.

            In short, she pursued a coup with the assistance of her fellow swamp rats in order to impose her own personal policy over the polices that would have otherwise been pursued by the person actually elected to run the executive branch and the elected legislators who are actually responsible for making laws under the Constitution.

            Needless to say the HarrisBiden DOJ and FBI are not pursuing her for her open admission of perjury in her book.

    9. Trump actually does pick competent subordinates most of the time. If anything, his trade mark, “You’re fired!” doesn’t get used often enough. Which to me indicates a rather surprising level of loyalty to those he chooses to employ.

      1. The limited number of non swamp rats who could get confirmed combined with the unwillingness of candidates to accept offers of posts in his administration because of the swamps efforts to destroy those who did, as exemplified as to what they did to General Flynn, made it very difficult for Trump to employ qualified people to many positions.

      2. Although his tendency to choose related folk is concerning. Even if they are doing nothing out of the ordinary it looks bad. Although finding folks he could trust was/will be hard. Most of the folks with any experience are ex Bush (Bush I or Bush 2) so solidly in the RINO surrender monkey camp. Others with better credentials are holding positions in the House, Senate or in various state positions, stealing them means you leave a hole that might get filled with a squish or worse yet a Democrat. If the Republicans get the White House in 2024 (and it is going to be hard because of the various “fortifications” of states with large blue cities) they’re going to have a heck of a time getting a team that can and will move forward with out getting coopted by the existing uniparty hacks.

  7. Perhaps the most memorable Asimov line (for me): “… there’s no way of putting the mushroom cloud back into that nice, shiny uranium sphere.”

  8. In one of the Siggraph conferences I attended (I think it was 1996 in New Orleans but it might have been a different one) Ray Kurzweil was the Key Note speaker. His concept of the singularity was quite interesting and I had two thoughts 1) His 2030 date was way too early, I figured somewhere between 2131 and never with the curve tending towards never 2) I wanted some of whatever he was smoking it sounded good…

  9. You can’t just be nice to people like that. And any republicans who get elected and think they can be nice and “work across the isle” are already in people’s minds as “people to replace as soon as possible.”

    I would love for those Republicans to work across the isle with Democrats. Preferably on one of those miserable little ones like St. Helena.

      1. Speaking of Atlantis:

        Atlantis sank so deep that it came out the other side of the Earth as Australia. (That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.)

  10. Sarah, I thought this post was excellent, and well said. I feel stronger after having read it, as well as the comments. 🙂

  11. Having said that, I agree that the old Plutocrat era of playing Good Little Loser is OVER. Dead, gone, and buried. One of Trump’s successes was that he didn’t come from the usual DC power structure, and started asking ‘intelligent layman’ questions about why our policies were what they were…and the answer was usually, “Well, that’s the way we’ve done it for the last sixty years.”

    Which might have been a good idea in the Truman administration, but for the late 20-teens was completely inappropriate.

    And the damage done by the COVID scam to the credibility of the medical establishment is nearly impossible to describe. Were I running CDC, I’d be organizing a team of outsiders to take a close look at the ENTIRE vaccine business. Including the number and type of vaccines on the recommended schedule – which has gone up dramatically in the last thirty years. The medical community has NO CREDIBILITY WHATSOEVER. None – except perhaps in Dentistry. Eye Doctors, too. The rest? Prove it. There have been too many incidents of the “best medical advice” doing a 180-degree turn.

    What the GOP needs to do is a complete scrub of the Federal Government. Consolidate several Cabinet-level agencies. Start work to disperse the Federal bureaucracy around the country (which will be costly and take time).

    And 4D the FBI – Disarm, Disestablish, Disperse, and Dismiss. Break them UTTERLY.

    Above all, we need MUCH stronger ethics laws. I spent forty years in DOD pay, making a point of NOT owning stock in any company so that there was no possibility of a conflict of interest. An S&P 500 index fund, yes…but not individual stocks. I expect every official, including the elected ones, to either match that conduct or turn their office over to someone who can. I’m available.

    1. “And 4D the FBI – Disarm, Disestablish, Disperse, and Dismiss. Break them UTTERLY.”

      You forgot Disembowel and Decimate (Roman Army Style).

              1. Brother, you’re playing my tune. Let’s fund the army and other essential CONSTITUTIONAL duties of the feds (what? Like BORDER DEFENSE) with a federal lottery, and let people keep their own money!

                1. Comparing the list of actual feralgov agencies vs what’s in the Constitution shows just how long the top-down foolishness has been going on.

                  …also why did they change it from Defense to War, which seems a bit misleading since we seem to get involved in every little podunk conflict now that they call it Defense?

                  1. It didn’t get changed. It got MERGED. Defense subsumed Navy as well as War. I suspect interservice rivalries might have been an element in the rename.

                    1. And the Army had to hive off the Air Force at the same time. So probably lots of butthurt going around.

                2. The federal government should be made to depend on the states for funding. This business of the federal government corrupting the states with money stolen from their own citizens has to END!!!

                  Every year, each state has to introduce a bill to fund their share of the federal government, that amount to be determined by the state.

                  Maybe, the federal funding bill should be submitted to the state’s voters in every election, and the amount approved repeated in the following non-election year.

                  Take a chainsaw to the federal government and prune off at least 95% of it!

                  1. Interestingly, the Constitution allows a “head tax” where the States are required to pay an amount to the Federal Government according to the States’ Population.

                    Mind you, to be blunt the main problem with the Articles of Confederation was just what you are suggesting.

                    IE The Federal Government depended on the States “paying them” and the States weren’t willing to pay the Federal Government.

                    Thus the Federal Government (such as it was) could not do the job that the Articles required it to do because the States failed to give them the moneys to do the job.

                    We correctly whine about the expansion of the Power of the Federal Government but fail to understand that the Constitution was passed because the Articles weren’t enough to keep the US one nation.

                    Under the Articles, we weren’t one nation and there were concerns that the Thirteen States would split apart into several nations.

                    1. Actually the reason that the Articles of Confederation were (illegally) replaced by the constitution is that the Federalists wanted a bigger government than the Articles allowed.

                      Why was that illegal? Because the Articles required unanimity for changes but the delegates to the constitutional convention arbitrarily changed that.

                      Which is exactly why an Article V convention of states is so dangerous that we would have to be in extremis for it to be worth risking: the delegates could just decide that no ratification was necessary, and that decision would be unreviewable.

                    2. Sigh.

                      Yes, the writers of the Constitution wanted a stronger Federal Government because the Articles were failing to keep us one nation and failing to solve the very real problems that the US faced at that time.

                      The Constitution worked as desired for decades but assholes had found ways to increase the power of the Federal Government beyond what is in the Constitution.

          1. The question answers itself..and the 1975 schools weren’t as good as the 1965 schools…the rot was already setting in…

          2. Which DOE?

            I realize it’s clear in context, but while we’re dreaming of pink-slipping agencies in their entirety…

    2. except perhaps in Dentistry

      I keep hearing stuff about how orthodontia is actually terrible and leads to tooth decay and death later in life.

      1. I just recently learned — from some friends who believe All The Liberal Things and are assiduously complying with every edict from The Experts — that orthodontists are condemning people to wear retainers at night for their entire lives. Apparently my wife knew this, but she and my (now adult) kids sensibly ignored that so-called medical advice.

      2. I go for regular cleanings and have to keep arguing with them that no, I don’t want to use an electric toothbrush, and no, I don’t need my teeth whitened. You keep saying my teeth are in excellent condition, can you not realize maybe there’s a reason…?

        1. I asked my dentist about whiteness of teeth and was told, roughly, “We just cleaned them, you’re fine save for one minor thing we should keep an eye on, but it’s nothing worth bothering with unless it gets worse or you have pain. Everything’s fine – including the color.”

      3. The Reader’s experience with orthodontists in the 60’s was odd. The Reader had (has) a mouthful of very crooked teeth. Parents took him to an orthodontist at age 13 or so. After exam, orthodontist told the Reader and parents that he could straighten all of them but the likely long term outcome was that the Reader’s teeth would come out prematurely in his 30’s or 40’s. A second orthodontist yielded the same opinion. The Reader still has all his crooked teeth, including a baby tooth that had nothing behind it.

        1. I have an ‘odd’ tooth that would need some Serious Work to ‘fix’. It’s not worth the bother. By now, even if it was ‘magic’ fixed painlessly and instantly, the different feel of things would bug me after so long.

        2. including a baby tooth that had nothing behind it

          My teeth are a little crooked but within spec, so my parents never even mentioned orthodontia for me. I have one of those baby teeth with nothing behind it too, but happily it’s completely fused to the bone so it isn’t going anywhere.

          1. All my baby teeth came out as expected… but I got four new upper front teeth twice after that, and two on the bottom. Only one set of molars, though.

    3. If you were in charge of the CDC you’d be on the take and so inclined to never look into how any of this happened.

      No one who isn’t bought off is allowed anywhere near the levers of power.

    4. Dentistry is full of corruptocrats.
      There hasn’t been a new idea on the market in tooth maintenance, repair, or replacement in decades. Implant technology was pretty much the last one, and it’s still medieval. Tooth enamel or dentine replacement, tooth regeneration, these are technologies that were being developed 10 years ago, and the ADA is deliberately sitting on, and suppressing them.

      1. 3D-printed ceramic crowns are pretty nice. And as the recipient of WAY too much dental work in my lifetime, the improvements in the last several decades have been immense. My dentist is friendly, VERY competent, and fast—he’s done the whole shebang in under 30 minutes, and then the only issue is that it takes the rest of the day for the numbing to wear off. (For me.)

      1. The last year has had a lot of things pop up for me re: vax. I am thinking now that vaccines tend towards statistically causing more harm than actual good, and additionally there being a large amount of does absolutely nothing. I do have some resources regarding that if you would be interested.

        1. Not sure I have any vaccines likely to come my way. Adjusting my tinfoil hat, I’d rather not discover that the flu vax “accidentally” was one of the tests of mRNA. My regular doctor doesn’t think I had the latest and greatest pneumonia vax, though I have the receipts from the adverse reaction to it.

          Minor advantage to being an olde pharte; I can tell the vaccinators to stick it in their own fundament and not get too much complaints. (Said doctor was verry verry quiet about the ChiCom not-a-vaccine the last time I saw him. I felt generous and didn’t bring it up. If he does, however…)

    5. “He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.”

  12. I don’t think you missed this one: “A complete and utter distrust of the media, news or otherwise.”

    You already had that distrust decades ago. More people are waking up to that realization.

    And the sheer arrogance in how the “Left” treated Kanye and Kyrie as a warning to everyone else in sports and entertainment to stay on the plantation and don’t backtalk masta or you will be destroyed. Had my neighbor quoting Malcolm X as we chatted this morning.

    Here’s an additional glimpse behind curtain featuring Kevin Hart and Kelly Clarkson:

  13. Right on. The whole ‘go back to the 90s’ meme is wishful thinking. I think it’s tied at the hip with the ‘Yeah, Trump got a few things done, but he’s too nasty and we can’t have that.’ The two of these is ‘happy thinking.’ To think that if our side ran a candidate that was ‘nice’ or ‘civil’ the Left would not attempt daily to destroy him or her is just naivety. What we saw with Trump is like a lesson in physics. The faster an object moves through the air, the more resistance and the more fuel required. The more he called out the Left, the louder the slander and ridicule. The more change he attempted to push through, the more push back. It was, as we all know, ever ending. And the idea that we can just nominate Mister Nice and the demo-commies will leave him or her and us alone is asinine.

    I remember the primaries and the crap thrown around by the anti-Trump people. It was not pretty, but we got him elected. And what he attempted to do and what ‘they’ did to him, opened up a lot of eyes.

    I know there are a lot of people who will only say they support Trump after prefacing that with, “I don’t like this about him,’ or ‘I wish he wouldn’t be so mean, or braggadocio,’ shit like that. I think that’s a little bow to the Left, hoping they’ll still like you even though you support him. I won’t do that. Trump is the bull in the China shop. We need at least four more years of that. It could be Trump/DeSantis, or I would even go with DeSantis/Trump. But I want two genuine fighters for Freedom in the White House. Then the clean up can begin.

    Go Trump!

    1. Somehow, I don’t think Trump would go for the VP slot…but it would be a really good ticket.

      1. You might be right. But as a 74 year old, I know that Trump cannot go full bore forever. And he’s pragmatic underneath the thick hide. Most importantly, he loves his country and would serve in any role he was asked to. One further point about a ‘vice’ role… I think that he could accomplish a helluva lot ‘under the radar’ as the VP, if need be.

        1. “Trump” and “under the radar” are not words I had ever thought to see in the same sentence.

          1. Well, I disagree. With any successful campaign there has to be a certain amount of ‘under the radar’ planning and training. To imply that Trump is all just about impulse and ego is wrong. I don’t think he got where he is, or was before he ran for president, without careful planning and yes, knowing how to work a stage, an audience.

      2. As I noted above a Trump/DeSantis (or DeSantis/Trump which is about as likely as my winning tonights lottery) is not constitutionally valid due to 12th amendment considerations. That is unless Trump changes residency next year or so. He won’t want to go back to NY the AG there has it out for him and would make life miserable so he’d have to go somewhere else solidly Red so he doesn’t get harassed.

        1. IIRC Technically, both the President and the Vice President can be from the same state but the electors could only vote for one of them.

          IE In this case, the electors could vote for DeSantis to be President but couldn’t vote for Trump to be Vice President.

          Minor nit-picking on my part. 😉

          1. Correct nit picking which means T/DS is a valid ticket and wouldn’t that be a LOVELY set of initials to troll with?

          2. I believe you are correct, But in this case it is a difference we can’t deal with. I suspect no matter what we do any win will be close on an electoral as there will be the same folderol as 2020. Getting the President but not getting the VP wont work. If Florida had 3 electoral votes the VP would probably make it through. Missing 30 is an issue. I think the electors would be republicans so might cast 30 votes for someone else for vp (not the Dem), but I think that still leaves us throwing it to the Congress on a per state basis, not a situation that would end well.

        2. Easily enough done.

          Having said that, if Trump is the nominee, he really needs a running mate who is NOT a contender for ’28. Someone who will stand clear and let the new generation take over. Were it not for the trust issues, McConnell would be ideal. As it stands…Newt Gingrich would be a decent fit.

    2. ‘Yeah, Trump got a few things done, but he’s too nasty and we can’t have that.’

      Which far too many people don’t realize is that Trump HAD to get nasty to get even those few things done.

      1. Chesterton says in his St. Francis book something like… a bombastic man is a humble man, and he talks big in hyperbole about the things he loves.

        Sleek polite men were a little sinister, to his mind.

  14. I had pretty much concluded all that by the mid-1970s and it was proven by spooks interfering in my patents in the 90s. Same for the computer bit. In the early 70s it was still mainframes with terminals so one learned to hack your accounts to online ones instead of card decks and make friends with odd university departments with terminals so you could get permission to use them late at night. Oh and the first computer I hacked hard in those days… I later discovered this computer was one of the first 8 nodes in the DARPA net. I only hacked it to do 3D interactive graphics on poor display systems. Oh and I wrote word processors to make papers without errors. The professors would see no erasures and assume you cheated. Sigh…. life is never rational.

      1. Or they would object to the dot matrix printing. Anything that might [shudder] make the assignment easier. “I had to type my thesis with two fingers on a 1913 Royal with sticky keys! You kids got it too easy!”

  15. As far the “the singularity”, I go with that we are between the twin event horizons of a Kerr-Newman black hole. The Industrial Revolution being the first horizon, and the Coasian Revolution* we are passing through being the second.

    often misnamed and trivialized as the “Information Age”

      1. Agricultural, the first Industrial, the Domestic Industrial, the Aviation, and the Information.

      2. Sarah, the Reader thinks you are correct and that this is an important point. It struck me when I read your comment how many of the crazies on the left effective want the human race to revert to pre-agricultural conditions. The Left still hasn’t processed it.

      3. I think you’re right about the agricultural revolution not being fully processed yet. Our own biology hasn’t quite caught up to domestication. The grand thing about our species though, is that we’re tool makers, not just users of stuff laying around. We can envision things that aren’t yet around. We can imagine the thing that will allow us to do “X”. Unfortunately our vision isn’t always clear and we don’t always see the iterations of effects several steps and/or years removed from obtaining the original thing envisioned.

  16. I’m going to go out on a limb and say the singularity already happened on a Cross on a hill called Golgotha.

    The human race has not been the same since in more ways than one.

    For sure the people who believe see things in a VERY different way than any human before and those who don’t definitely to not Grok those who believe.

    My story and I’m sticking to it but feel free to disagree.

    1. Before I went back into a church I didn’t know Christianity was for individuals. I was wrong.

        1. Oh yes, I had one of those. When it was done, I wasn’t quite the same….and my faith was a bit less abstract. (It’s gotten steadily less abstract as time goes by).

      1. On a hill called Golgatha forever was torn
        The understanding of ‘always’ shaped and reborn.
        The soul of the many were not on the line,
        The soul in question was yours and was mine.

        Up to that hill, upon that tree
        A man was uplifted in agony.
        For one he was nailed. For one did he die.
        Each one enough for him to comply.

        Each one brought us home, not by company.
        But lead by the hand. You and me.
        And each of the ‘you’s he led by the hand.
        And brought every ‘me’ to our homeland.

        A land that our souls were longing to go,
        But clustered together, we never could know.
        So he brought us all, each one by one.
        And with us is standing alone in the sun.

        How many he brought, across the wide sea,
        Yet, deeply he sought, alone just for me.
        He sought us and bought us, each heart alone.
        And for just one soul lost, was sent to atone.

        Perhaps too abstract but… it seemed to fit.

        1. Perhaps too abstract but… it seemed to fit.

          No. Not abstract. Not at all. I’m not one for poetry, normally (I sure can’t write it). But yours I like. I’d buy it.

  17. WRT the singularity…if you look at ANY technology, there’s an “S” curve of development. Slow progress as we figure out the basics, then rapid growth as the easy issues are solved, then a slowing because everything that hasn’t been done is VERY hard.

    Which means that if you’re writing SF, any linear extrapolation of current technology is almost certainly wrong.

      1. And the overall curve is a matter of how fast the new individual s-curves are being generated. And that, to a certain extent, is a function of how many s curves–whatever point we’re at on each of them–exist.

    1. Singularity was crazy people extrapolating beyond the data set, apparently with no grasp of the reasons to avoid extrapolating beyond the data set.

      It is like a massive crossover of martial arts Shonen manga, with the dynamics set by fanon views of the abilities of Ranma Saotome and Dragonball Z’s Son Goku, as judged by their respective most virulent fanboys. “Sure, Raoh and Heihachi Edajima are scrub tier, not even on a level with Naruto and Luffy, but they are still somewhat effective teachers. That is why post martial arts singularity Yuzu Kurosaki is several orders of magnitude able to beat pre-singularity Chuck Norris.”

    2. One quip I saw elsewhere: “No one who hasn’t picked up a soldering iron gets to say anything about electronic technology.”

      1. I think there are a few people who haven’t touched soldering irons much, and who also have useful bits of understanding.

        but, up close it is much harder than it looks at a great distance.

        From looking at a number of fields at a very great distance, the singularity seems plausible.

      2. Soldering iron(s). Heck, soldering gun (on gear that required it). At one point[1] propane torch.

        [1] You have a better way of repairing the antenna (almost) in-place at -20 F?

        1. I had to buy a new soldering gun when I decided that bulk coax and PL259s made more sense than going to Cables ‘r Us. Haven’t had much occasion to use the new soldering station, but there’s one kit in the stack, and I’m thinking of building a QDX. (If I ever get the round-tuit to learn Morse code, more possibilities open.)

    3. The trick is to be aspirational rather than go for linear extrapolation. What would people want if they could have anything? Hence Star Trek communicators that gave impetus to those designing cell phones. Not to mention turning said phones into tricorders. We’re still working on transporters. Likewise, thank God Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk read Heinlein when they were kids. The old adage about how to get rich, “Make things people want,” is true of fiction, “Make up things people want.”

      1. I maintain that the modern smart phone is the lineal descendant of the pocket computer that Niven and Pournelle described in “The Mote in God’s Eye”. They were shockingly prescient with that one.

        1. Back when I first wrote “Survival Test” in the early 90’s, an accessory my characters had was a “comppad”, a small hand-held computer that connected by wireless network to other such devices as well as to larger computers. I was thinking something like This was just before the Apple Newton was released and well before PalmPilots (for those who remember either of those things). I hadn’t read tMiGE at that point so I didn’t pick it up from Niven and Pournelle.

          When I rewrote Survival Test for indie publication many years later I had to just call it a “phone”.

        2. Maybe true, but it was published in 1974, several years after STOS and their handheld communicators. In either case, the same point. Write what you want to see. Let somebody else invent it.

        3. I’ll credit the movie version of 2001 for the inspiration of various tablets/Kindles.

          I’d still like a computer to open the door for me. 🙂

  18. Nope, don’t make no nevermind. I have some rather good memories of the eighties, the sixties and even a few from the forties, but go back? Can’t, Wouldn’t if I could.

    I’ve always had mixed feelings about the supposed Chinese curse; May you live in interesting times. Interesting times are, face it, interesting, not boring, a test of one’s mettle and frankly we pretty much all got that, right here, right now, in spades!

    I remember during our flood, here, Fairbanks, Alaska in ’67, friends and I, sheltered for weeks well away from our flooded homes, laughingly discussing, ‘what are we gonna do heroic today?’, fill and stack sandbags around the power plant, move food etc. from point A to B, C &D, motorboat through town (Running over parking meters, parked cars, etc.) collecting other stranded, flooded folks?

    Yep, interesting times, in spades. So what are we gonna do heroic today? Vote, lend a hand wherever needed, share the good, bear the bad, care for others and take care ours and of ourselves. Based on past experience (Singularities notwithstanding.) if we do such, soldier on, it’ll all come out right. Maybe not tomorrow, maybe a lot of work, strain, pain before but hey, nobody ever promised you easy!

  19. “wealth that isn’t tied to the patronage of the people”
    You mean like the Kennedys? You renumber them. The ones who almost started nuc war. did enable the Asian war that screwed up a few members of the population, the ones who pushed through a so called civil right bill enshrining AA and Quotas.
    Those kind of independent wealthy?

    1. We do remember them. Can you write coherently?
      There was a lot of graft in making the Kennedys and they were RAISED for elected office. So, you see where they don’t fit.
      Learn to spell. And yes, this is from someone who is dyslexic.

    2. All the Kennedy wealth came through patronage — the bootlegging came later —— but Honey Fitz and the Boston Democrat machine provided immense opportunities for graft.

      The key thing is that the Irish in Southie would vote for that crowd no matter what they did so they did what they wanted. They literally got away with murder.

      When I was younger, I used to wait until the older ones had liquor taken, say “how ‘bout the Kennedy’s” then duck before the inevitable row. Worked every time. My da would get down on me later, but it was always worth it,

    3. Truman got us into Korea, Johnson got us into Vietnam. What war did JFK get us into, again? I don’t recall.

      I still remember what Dad said: “The Democrats kept yelling that if I voted for Barry Goldwater, we’d go to war in Southeast Asia. Whaddya know, they were right. I voted for Goldwater and sure enough, we went to war in Southeast Asia.”

      1. Kennedy took us into Vietnam, Johnson simply practiced escalatio. Woodrow Wilson took us into WW I, where had no business being, Polk, Madison .,.. Hmm seems the only wars that Republicans took us into were Spain, Bush democratizing the desert tribes, and the Civil War,, though one could argue that was just the Dems acting as they often do when they lose an election.

        1. Johnson turned Vietnam into a full-scale war by pushing lies about the Gulf Of Tonkin incident, even after the facts were known. Of course it had nothing to do with Johnson’s ties to the arms industry…

          1. Chuckle Chuckle

            D. A. Brock’s second Republic Of Texas Navy novel has a character named Lyndon Baines Johnson (a Reserve Lieutenant of the Texas Navy).

            Not a really nice guy and comes to a fitting end. 😉

  20. Sorry, Sarah, but I’m all out of lollipops.

    They can sit in the back with a bowl of cold mashed potatos.

    And be GRATEFUL!

    1. They can sit in the back with a bowl of cold mashed potatos.

      Cold mashed potatoes!

      Say all my Irish ancestors.

  21. I’ve never believed in super humans or ultra complexity of any sort. created by humans….the more complex, the faster it breaks down (except for the incredible workings of the human body, which was built by the Source)…

  22. Some of us elderly have long had a saying, “good enough for government work,.” recognizing that bloated bureaucracy has never had quality control. When they campaigned for unionizing government workers, there was the saying, “well, there goes the country.” And of course, everyone has always quoted Eisenhower’s farewell warnings. I think even he did not realize we would have an educational/industrial complex; a medical/industrial complex; a DOJ/FBI/industrial complex; a transportation/industrial complex (he helped create that one with the Interstate Highway system); all systems controlled from the top down.
    Oh how I wish there was still a complex for trains between large cities. How I wish we had free medical systems, not huge conglomerates controlled by insurance companies and the federal government.
    I would like to know my descendants would have a free America, but we have gone too far, and we can’t turn back. But we can try to make things work again.

  23. My understanding of the term “Singularity” was that it was specifically tied to the seemingly accelerating pace of technological progress. The term required that progress continue to accelerate, and represented the point at which technology progressed faster than humans could understand those progressions. The idea of technology progressing beyond our ability to grasp it isn’t entirely without merit, as there have been advances in the past whose capabilities and advantages weren’t properly understood by those who possessed (and frequently, subsequently lost) them. The idea of ever-accelerating technological progress, on the other hand, is another matter.

    1. The idea of technology progressing beyond our ability to grasp it isn’t entirely without merit

      I mean…. that is a literal description of the last two centuries.

    2. “Magic” means different things if you are the audience, or the wizard. Somewhere for every bit of “magic”, there must be someone who understands what he is doing and why.

      1. Once upon a time I need a file from home at $Relative’s place. The simple means to ‘pull’ it didn’t work, so logged in remotely and ‘pushed’ it. Asked what I was doing, I tried to explain. $Relative simply declared, “Magic.” Said $Relative does NOT claim technical inclination (etc.), but would likely test above population average in competence with such, FWIW.

  24. Government should be as small and localized as possible. No. Smaller and more localized than that. No. Than that too.

    To the maximum extent possible government should be localized to the individual governing himself.

    1. I suspect some fraction of the actual left are governed at the sub-individual level, by a Legion of (what passes for) personalities or voices.

  25. “If you’d brought me forward from 1990 even to day, I’d have a week of extreme confusion trying to understand how we live now.”
    I really enjoyed the TV series Life, where the main character was a cop falsely convicted, who spent the years from 1995 to 2007 mostly in solitary to protect him from the other inmates. His confusion over cell phones and light sensitive bathroom faucets reminded me of just how much things had changed in only 12 years.

    1. Spider Robinson did that in a short story called, I think, “The Time Traveller.” That guy had been thrown in a South American prison for being in the wrong place and stayed there through a couple of regime changes (partly because nobody really knew who he was or that he was there.)

      Despite the name and the setting (Callahan’s), it’s one of his stories without any SF elements, and he was surprised when it won awards.

  26. When your lights go out,
    and your house grows cold,
    and your pipes burst as they freeze;
    remember the Democrat Party,
    that brought America to its knees.

    Of course we’re a nation of immigrants,
    but legally we all came.
    This flood of invaders,
    enabled by Democrats,
    can they say the same?

    Who burned the cities,
    across America, in May and June 2020,
    to protest the death,
    of a drug-using criminal?
    I’d laugh, but it isn’t funny.

    Who defunds the police,
    and takes away guns,
    to defend against gangs with our fists?
    The Democrat Party,
    with guards big and hearty;
    tell me, why shouldn’t you be pissed?

    So please remember,
    to vote 8 November,
    before 7 PM is passed.
    So vote G.O.P.,
    unless you want to see,
    America, coming in last.

    (If you think it’s good enough, share as widely as you like. I admit it limps a bit.)

  27. Just for an additional data point on the three letter agencies being involved in public affairs – Do you think the headquarters of any other nation’s spy agencies have signs, pointing them out on major highways? NSA has its own labeled exit on the Baltimore-Washington Pkwy, and CIA has a labeled exit on th George Washington Pkwy.

    1. Those may be the “official” headquarters but the Real Headquarters might be not publicly known. 😉

      1. There certainly could be a more secret hdqtrs, but I know from personal experience that the public location is where the CIA Director, NSA Director, and their staff, spent the bulk of their time.

    2. Those agencies are so large that it’s impossible to hide them. NSA was officially classified for a long time…but it was an open secret.

      It’s what goes on inside the buildings that you need to keep under the hat.

  28. I’ve culled the DVD herds back so hard that I’m starting to let them grow again now. Too much stuff out there that either isn’t on streaming, or isn’t on a service I use.

    1. Due to satellite internet and tight bandwidth limits, our DVD collection might be modest, but it’s a lot bigger than a few years ago. Some of our favorite TV series (cough Bones cough) are for sale at a deep discount. ($50 for the full set, almost 70 discs.)

  29. Just another data point on the public affairs involvement of the three letter agencies- both CIA and NSA headquarters have openly labeled exits on major highways. Secret?

  30. When I’m president, the approach to foreign wars will be similarly simple:

    “Without a declaration of war, only the USMC shall be operationally deployed for no longer than 90 days, and then only in evacuation operations of American citizens and State Department personnel. After that, the congress gets to get off its ass and take the ****ing heat like it’s supposed to and declare a war, or we let the chips fall where they may. Upon a formal declaration of war and not before, we will conduct unrestricted conventional warfare until the enemy surrenders unconditionally, or are dead to the last fighting person. No more questions, thanks.”

    1. Upon a formal declaration of war and not before, we will conduct unrestricted conventional warfare until the enemy surrenders unconditionally, or are dead to the last fighting person. No more questions, thanks.”

      I’d like to add a clause that once in a state of war, if the embassy of any other country complains about it they will be treated to a few small pieces of ordinance.

      This is not an attack, but a very strongly worded way of telling them to STFU and mind their own business.

      1. Goes double for any member of the News Media from “not involved” foreign countries.

  31. Sarah, I think you misunderstood John Hinderaker’s point. He no more wants to go back to the nice 90s than you do. But he also doesn’t want to lose the gains we’ve made and are about to make even more of by throwing Trump the man back into the mix.

    I happen to agree that, at this point, Donald Trump is damaged goods that may well lose the presidency and Congress and throw us back to the bad old days of 2020. I think we can elect Ron DeSantis and get both the Trumpist policies we think are best for the country and not have the problems that come with Donald Trump himself.

    And, FWIW, I agree with you about Paul Mirengoff…though I was sorry to see it took Steven Hayward taking his head off in public to get him to dry up and blow away.

    1. I agree that there is a possibility of Trump being damaged goods this time around. But not for the reasons other things.

      If so it will be because he is not based enough. Not willing to take the fight to the left enough.

      1. Eh…Taking the fight to the left has never been his weakness. The problem is that I fully expect him to be indicted, possibly by more than just the feds. We all know such an indictment would be purely political, but it’s an indictment nonetheless, and would be both a severe distraction and a powerful political tool the Democrats could use to weaken him in the eyes of undecided moderates.

    2. Trump would not lose any gains. Anyone else would lose as much as him.
      The man withstood attacks that would have destroyed anyone else and kept on ticking. We don’t know where to find the next Trump, and a useable one is still around.
      His negatives are NOT any higher than they were in 16

      1. I do wish he hadn’t decided to give De Santis a mocking nickname three days before the election. So far as I know, De Santis has refrained from criticizing him. (And if he’s smart, he won’t start now).

      2. We haven’t passed Nov. 8th yet. But assuming the hype and trending it out to ’24, a second round of Trump would have several classes of congresscritters sporting the same battle patches as Trump. The left would find a frontal attack to be suicidal.

      3. Personally, I think the GOP should use Trump not as a candidate, but as a King Maker. Most of the candidates he approves of end up winning. Continuing to use that while not having him actually running for an office keeps the Dems oriented to him while also making it more difficult to attack the actual candidate because everyone sees how the Dems keep running out the “bad as, or worse than, Trump (Hitler)” trope on tens, if not hundreds, of candidates. After awhile it loses any sort of bite. And not just for the undecideds, but for their base as well. The same ol’ schtick just doesn’t travel as well as it used to.

        1. That’s what they said about Sarah Palin, before they destroyed her. Look…. anything but President the message to the left will b e that we also don’t want him. Sorry.

  32. What you don’t do is say “Your notion is silly. What even.” Because, you know, you want six hundred bucks, which are the difference between buying groceries and… uh…. not.

    Silly can be FUN!

    Just… gotta remember it’s silly, and have fun.

  33. Turns out there’s a reason the Blue Checks are so angry about Elon Musk offering verification for a mere $8. And folks, Musk has only begun to expose the corruption of the social media system. Hold on to your fundaments.

    1. I can never make up my mind where to put the Babylon Bee bookmark. Should it go under ‘Entertainment’, or ‘News’?

      They’re trying, really they are, to find something so ridiculous, so insane, so outright impossible, that the Democrats won’t up and do it for real before the day is out. So far, in vain.

      1. I tried sarcasm and satire here in Sarah’s comment section.

        I had to put in Poe notifications because people found it plausible that a dem Governor would sue POTUS personally…

        Nothing I came up with truly pushed past what was on the TV…

        I was proud, confused and sad all at the same time.

  34. As someone who would like to be back in the 1990’s-if only because the music was decent, the girls were pretty without cringing too hard, the entertainment was pretty good (you could actually get readable comic books and anime and manga were becoming available in the US)-there seemed to be some counterbalance to the stupid.

    Yes, I knew (even back then) that we had generations of idiots in the college system and they were trying to enforce political correctness back then. But it seemed like enough things were working-Clinton was an idiot and in ’94 he got slapped down when the Republican Revolution happened. Yes, many of them turned out to be foolish, but in comparison to the usual RINO idiots that were in DC at the time? A breath of fresh air, enough to make even Billy Bob realize that he had to plan his schemes better. And even that didn’t save him because he was impeached for perjury and other “high crimes and misdemeanors.” Hollywood wouldn’t let the idiots in charge of the kingdom, because they wanted to make money and letting the Che-natics play with stupid little art films that only played in tiny little flea-infested theaters in New York and LA and San Francisco was fine-as long as the blockbusters got Middle America and the untapped millions and billions there.

    It seemed like there were idiots and fools, but they were the exception and most certainly not the rule. Nobody was messing with the hard sciences in the colleges because of all that sweet, sweet Federal money kept coming in and they had to show results. Nobody seemed to have a problem with your politics and organizations that were fringe groups were supposed to be there, like NAMBLA and their ilk.

    There were people that shouldn’t have been there, but once again…they seemed like the exception. Not the rule.

    Now, the table has flipped, and the exceptions are the rules. And damn them for it.

    1. The ’90s were pretty good, overall. Though 1993-94 were rough. People forget how rabidly Leftist Sick Willie Clinton really was, when he had power.

      1. 1993 and 1994 were pretty terrible, but we did get some good movies in both years. And, I think that the Clintons moving so fast in 1993 and 1994 scared a lot of people into voting for a House and Senate that could…slow them down a bit.

      2. The 90’s were when the infestation of the federal bureaucracy with rabid leftists became uncontrollable. It was happening before then, but that was the tipping point. That was the Clinton’s real legacy and the Reader damns them for it.

    2. The 90s gave us grunge, and what’s now referred to as the Dark Age of Comic Books (though they were doing better then than they are now). I prefer the 80s. Even anime and manga was available in the 80s, though I will admit that you had to look a lot harder to get it (unless Dark Horse had picked it up).

      1. Anime really came here in the very late ’80s/early ’90s, but some of the best subtitle studios started working around then (AnimEgo, who had liner notes on Japanese cultural points and translation choices was one of the big ones I remember, Pioneer, US Manga Corps, VIZ, Central Park Media…).

        We also had more independent comics and more “alternative” comics. Yes, 90% of them were crap, but when you have a wider pool to draw from, there is just more cream that can rise to the top.

      2. The Dark Age and the Woke are very different in what they get wrong. The Dark Age was cringeworthy attempts to be very grownup in the most adolescent way.

    3. Agreed on the music and girls and the gaming was great back then, too. There’s just no comparison between the Golden Age of JRPGs back then and how sparse good ones are now.

      1. I think we got into the issue that “gaming was the new Hollywood” and rather than try to figure out how to make good games that made people happy to pay for them…the threw a whole lot of money at the problem and they had to make the money back somehow.

        That’s when you got things like day-one and on-disk DLC, gatcha games with pure gambling mechanics, “games as services,” and all of that mess that Jim Sterling complained about before the Martian Brain Fungus got to him.

        1. Yep and intrusive DRM to top it all off. It’s why I’m happy to be running emulators most of the time these days.

  35. On the Singularity…

    Most people when they talk about the Singularity were doing the whole “Rapture Of The Nerds” thing. That we’d get the Heavenly Paradise on Earth and everything would be okay forever and ever and ever.

    That opinion is just another interpretation of Hell as far as I’m concerned.

    And not even a particularly interesting one.

    Mind you, some of the secondary ideas are reasonably interesting and having the ability to properly choose my death-or even not dying-does sound nice.

    1. They say it would be techno-utopia, but it would more likely be a hellscape of man-child wannabe conquerors blundering around like idiot gods, destroying everything human in their quest for absolute power. Could make an interesting novel though. Not sure if you’d put it under Comedy or Horror.

      1. Reminds me of a line from Jack Chalker’s ‘And The Devil Will Drag You Under’ right after Jill and Mac gain control of the Eye Of Baal.

        “Where do we begin?”

        “At the beginning, probably, which is the first step amateurs face in their attempts to muck things up.”

  36. I think a lot of the hype about a singularity is misunderstanding the look of an exponential curve. Any e-curve looks like nothing, nothing, nothing…takeoff at any point along the x-axis with an appropriate change of the scale of the y-axis. Conversely, by appropriate scale changes you can make the curve look far less dramatic. Couple that with, as mentioned above, a lack of understanding that the real curve is a logistic curve and silliness results.

    Interestingly enough, if you fit a logistic curve to our progress in flops/watt in computing vs the theoretical maximum, we hit it sometime in the middle of next century. Also interesting is estimates of flops/watt of the human brain keep going up and may well end up at that theoretical number.

  37. I tried sarcasm and satire here in Sarah’s comment section.

    I had to put in Poe notifications because people found it plausible that a dem Governor would sue POTUS personally…

    Nothing I came up with truly pushed past what was on the TV…

    I was proud, confused and sad all at the same time.

    1. Sorry for double down.

      Phone is fighting me.

      I don’t mind that, I just hate it when I lose…

      1. Imagine an alien strip club where the aliens normally run around naked, but consider it sexually stimulating to put on more and more obscuring clothing.

      2. Absolutely. Especially if aliens had a remarkably different idea about what stripping means than human.

  38. Berton Roueché wrote for The New Yorker for 50 years. His beat was medical mysteries. I am a big fan of his books. Reading those books developed an admiration for public health workers. In just a few short years, Modern public health organizations have thrown all that away and have lost my respect. (Looking at Roueché’s Wikipedia entry I just learned his writing greatly influenced the TV series House)

  39. Sarah, I don’t know where you live. But I wish you lived next door. I’d even start drinking coffee to come over every morning to pester you to see where your brain is going. That would be all for my own delight. Of all the other fantastic writers I go read each day, they’re like chef school instructors. They teach the ingredients and processes that make up the world. Sometimes they tell us how things are supposed to look or taste. But you? You’re the head chef. You put it all together, add a ton of spice and plate it all to perfection. As I read I kept thinking, yes, yes, yes. This is how it’s all put together. There’s no mind work here. It was more a pulling out of my own soul the entirety of it into something delivering perfect understanding.
    This is a much more piercing piece than I have had the pleasure to read for quite a long time. It’s a full five course meal with multiple drinks and desserts. It’s an all together piece of work. One of your bests.

  40. I had the same reaction reading Hinderaker’s piece at Powerline and wrote a critiquing comment on it. Love ya, Sarah, and yes, the 90’s are gone and so with it certain vulnerabilities. We cannot trust much other than each other.

  41. Apologies for the severely OT comment but, when did bleeping Amazon drop the Kindle app download? Did I just miss this from months ago? Apparently I can’t even download a book I just bought…

    1. You can buy a book with it? I haven’t been able to do that on my phone for a few months. I have to use the Amazon app to buy it.

      1. My assumption when that changed was that Google was getting frisky with demanding Google Play’s cut of any DLC (read: books) bought on any ap downloaded through them, and Amazon decided not to pay them the… 30%? standard fee.

        May be related to various ap stores’ ongoing legal shenanigans with Epic (which is all about microtransaction ap store fees,) or may just be a re-evaluation of ye olde order.

        1. That has been the case on the Apple side for quite a while. You can’t even do a regular Amazon purchase through the iOS Amazon app much less a Kindle purchase in the iOS Kindle app. You have to go to Amazon’s website through the browser.

    2. I can’t buy a book through either Amazon device apps (Windows-laptop, or Google-phone). But can still download. But to do so must close the apps, so when apps are reloaded, the purchased book links show in the app, then they can be downloaded. Also, sigh, still can’t then import into Calibre (almost makes me want to figure out the tool Calibre is written in, copy the downloaded books, and figure out what is needed … if the Kindle apps can load the books, after it is downloaded, without being connected to the internet, an absolute requirement due to often lack of internet connection, then Calibre can be made to do it).

      Please note to all authors. I’ve been *avoiding purchasing Kindle books from the beginning of my ebook journey. Just based on the antics Amazon has pulled. I get books through Nook (less iffy). Would use almost any other source.

      (*) Avoiding <> not any. Just not a preference.

    3. I find that if I want to buy a Kindle book, the only way I can pull it off is to go to my account on the ‘zon website on one of the computers, then buy and initiate the download to my Kindle from there. I might be able to download via the Kindle, but actually purchasing through it has been a nonstarter for a few months.

  42. OT: Willamette Valley, Eugene (north end anyway), is getting snow (sleet) coming down off/on … In early November. That rarely, ever, happens. Not in 66 years (okay, I really don’t remember the first 3 or so, but still …).

    1. We had snow down here on Friday. Just enough to make it really cold for a few hours (yes, 38 isn’t cold-cold, but at this point in the year, it felt really cold. Wind chill of 27.)

    2. I didn’t have sleet, or anything, just darned cold. Admittedly, I din’t go out much to see because it was so damned chilly so suddenly. (S Clackamas County)

    3. Snow in the Treasure Valley on Friday as well. Made my flinty heart sing, it did. But I haven’t been here long enough to know if that’s unusual or not.

      1. “Treasure Valley” … South of Baker Oregon?

        Not unusual. At least the last few years.

        Cousin is in Baker, she is getting snow. Aunt & Uncle (her parents) are NW of Baker (near Pine Creek), they are getting more snow.

  43. “I’ve written one trans-humanist story, and it was because I was invited to a trans-humanist anthology.”

    Which story? Which anthology?

      1. The title of the anthology is Transhuman. Sarah Hoyt’s story there is “Whom The Gods Love”. (The book also has a story by Dan Hoyt.)

  44. Curricula at the district level? Don’t stop there! First, we need to break up the bigger school districts!

    How about one district per public high school? School board members would be subject to some real democracy. One really angry parent can make a difference.

    1. one district per public high school

      Our school district has that. Well one general high school and one specialized high school for students who have problems with the main one (one HS, 2 middle schools, 4 grade schools, and 2 k-8).

      The neighboring, co-district, same city, isn’t that way. There are 4 high schools (8 middle schools, and 16 grade schools) at the other district. That is not counting the alternative HS available.

      All because the main school district did not want the neighboring “rural properties” (i.e. farming/ranching hicks) at their schools. I was too young to remember that argument. Not too young to be part of the “Oh h*** No” when the bigger district tried to force suggested merger with the smaller district (did not go well).

  45. I know I can’t unsee it, but I’m afraid there are too many in our country who want peace at the Thanksgiving dinner table and would kick out a Trump because he wouldn’t be quiet about Aunt Lefty’s venom. We need to keep reminding our fellows, and not be afraid of being called names. I am heartened to see how many candidates are out there talking back to the media; that’s another fringe benefit of Trump. Hopefully, they keep multiplying.
    Great post, Sarah.

  46. I believe the great reveal of the post-2016 world has been how the biggest-name Conservatives were phonies and grifters. Strangely, my GOP congresscritter made a big deal about how he’ll oppose the eeeevil Democrats. BUT he voted to impeach Mr. Trump. Happily, he didn’t survive the primary. I’m fully confident that the Democrat who’s running ads saying her opponent is a werewolf and the Republican running ads saying she’s the anti-christ are as insincere as any of the Bushes infesting the GOP in the ’90s.

  47. I remember these same “people” shooting off a mother’s head in Idaho while she was holding her baby… same demonic filth burned a whole bunch of people in Texas,

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