No Blame

When I was younger I had a lot of friends who used the i-ching (a Chinese divination book, also called The Book of Changes.) It is believed also that Phillip K. Dick used it plotting the Man in the High Castle.

Anyway, there is one line that keeps surfacing in there. It will predict/describe a bunch of horrible things and end with “no blame.”

Which goes to prove that an ancient Chinese oracle is saner than the Marxism that’s been inculcated into most of the minds in the West since the turn of the twentieth century, just about.

And if you’re going to tell me there’s no Marxism in your head, think again. I still keep finding bits of it in my own head, though I’ve done all I can to clear it out. It’s in the history you were taught, it’s in the reasoning of various agencies that have power over us, and a bit of it trickles into our head also.

The Marxism I keep finding on the right is the bizarre idea that the elaborate plans of the planners are coming through perfectly; that something planned by he Soviet Union in the sixties is now coming to fruition. For the love of Bob, give me a break. Those people could never make anything they wanted happen, which is why life in the Soviet union was brutal and miserable. Yeah, some of the breakage might look sort of kind of like that, but it’s not. Not if you dig behind. What you’re seeing is people on the left taking credit for the working of their plan.

They work that way. They might be learning to do it ahead of time Now there’s something calling itself a name I can’t recall but which amounts to “Market ruin socialism.”

The other thing that infects the right, and honestly probably is amplified by connecting to some of the more miserable Christian puritan strains, is the bizarre idea that being wealthy is bad and leads to ruin and downfall.

Rome fell not because it was wealthy, but because it had a large, oppressive, centralized state that trampled all over citizens. No, that’s not what they taught you. Because the Soviet Union put out the idea that wealth itself was bad and would destroy a country. They did it to defend themselves against the accusation we were more wealthy. You’re not required to believe it. And you shouldn’t. Because frankly we’ve been crazy-wealthy for about 100 years. And by Roman, or medieval, or even current Chinese standards, even the Soviet Union was wealthy. None of which had anything to do with any kind of decadence. Equaling wealth with decadence ties in with making envy a virtue, which is pure Marxism.

However, the Marxism running rampant through our society and creating strife, and driving most of us insane is the idea that “there always has to be someone to blame.”

No, I’m not going to tell you that no one is to blame for the mess that the Bidentia has made of the nation and world. We were all here, we all know the blame. And we know who the blame lies with for the stolen election too. That’s not the point.

The point is the big movements of history. Equity makes sense to the left, because, if someone had it badly in the past, some other group — not an individual or a small group, not a system of belief but another group, definable as a group by some characteristic the left gives a hang about, like skin color, or sex, or who you like to sleep with — has to have been oppressing them.

This is crazy cakes.

Instead of seeing humans who at times, in some places, had a terrible time due to this or that, they see that if a group — say black people — were enslaved the fault must be of another group, as Americans in the 20th century would identify a different group.

So, for instance, slavery, they’re convinced was invented by white people to enslave black people. Because– I don’t know. Because the only way to triumph is to drive someone else down?

This ignores the fact slaves were abundant when they were because of vast tribal wars and movements in Africa. As in most tribal societies, the people taken prisoner were either enslaved or killed. So, arguably black people were enslaving black people in Africa. The fact that there was some place to sell them after might have saved their lives. (Though mostly slaves only survived well in the US and maybe parts of Europe. Being sent to South America or the Caribbean was a death sentence, just slower like being sent to Siberia would be later.)

So while there were massive injustices committed, the worst were committed by the group that the left identifies as all one, against itself. These things happen. Again, from the top, every race has enslaved every other race at some time. And it is only in our country right now and in other parts of the west that it’s illegal. (Which doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen. That wide open border is very useful for human trafficking, as well as drugs. And it’s not any particular race, even.)

Or take the “women have been oppressed throughout history.” I agree. Women have. But the problem here is that men were oppressed too.

Most of the things they point to as female oppression came from the fact that there was no way to stop a woman of fertile age from getting pregnant — by rape even — except by circumscribing her to a small circle of people who knew and cared for her. Women didn’t go to war (yes, a few did under cover, and yes, there were always camp followers, and yes, those sometimes fought in ancient and medieval battles, but it’s not the same thing) because a battalion of women if captured became breeders for the enemy, something that people didn’t want happening to their wives and daughters. Women didn’t go to war, because pregnant women are not as functional as men. Women didn’t go to war because our upper body strength is smaller. Etc. Etc. Etc. Women could command in war, and often did, if born to a position that enabled them to do so. But they were profoundly unsuited to the scrum.

Women didn’t learn in general. There were exceptions. But yeah, the vast majority of women weren’t educated.

Here’s the secret: neither were the vast majority of men.

Even in the early twentieth century in Portugal a lot of older adults had never been taught to read and write. They had jobs that didn’t involve writing, and women in particularly were often almost bizarrely busy, because minding the baby, cooking (not to mention gathering the food and often growing it) and weaving it were all activities of normal every day women, in addition to brewing (water not being safe most people drank alcohol all the time, even if “just” beer.) In addition, wives of craftsmen often helped in the craft in various ways.

Yes, women were oppressed.

But the left, infected with Marxism, imagines that this is because men stood around, twirling their moustaches and plotting the next point of oppression.

I can’t tell you how many times, when I was in lefty chat groups, some woman would wring her hands and wonder how we could keep men from “taking us back there again”, “back there” being some hell of submission and un-personhood.

When I’d started to open the door to the political closet, I’d say things like “by giving as much freedom and rights to each individual regardless of sex and making everyone equal under the law.” You know that cartoon where the guy saying the obvious thing gets tossed out the window? That’s what happened.

Because in Marxism, due to the fact Marx’s mind was small, and probably rat infested, In his small, grifty (totally a word) if someone was a victim, someone else was victimizing them. And the someone was a different class. (Which in the hands of Gramsci became a skin color or being female. And in the hands of the current craziness extended to sexual preference or coming from a country they approve of or–)

And our educational institutions being soaked with it have taught generations to think “Women had it bad in the past because men were oppressed. Then heroic feminists marched shoulder to shoulder, and now we’re free, but those evil men are gathering and plotting and will enslave us again any minute.”

The problem with this type of thought is that it works in a movie (maybe. Barely) but it can’t work in reality. It’s like that stupid meme on facebook saying that since the middle ages women’s garments were forbidden to have pockets, because men were afraid the women would put spells in them!

People with an education. People who read and think and try to have a life of the mind share that meme and piously believe it. Now think about it for two seconds.

The middle ages WHERE? because even if you restrict it to Europe, culture and clothing were radically different. Also WHO forbid it? Not “men”. In the middle ages the average man as much say in governance as the average cat. And suppose a king was crazy enough to dictate women’s garments should be made without pockets. How is he going to enforce it? the fabric was spun, cut and sewn by women. It was mostly a private activity of women for women, often themselves and their families. Sure, there were fashions, but they might actually be hyper-local. If a fashion spread it was usually because of an advance in either fabric or dress making technique that made the clothes more becoming, more comfortable, or preferably both.

Also, most women had pockets. The pockets were usually tie-on and hanging from a belt. Also, if you read anything written by pre-modern women (yeah, some knew how to write.) they carried stuff in their sleeves, and … well…. between their boobs a lot, depending on the level of security they wanted. If they really were carrying spells, (or poisons, or whatever) that’s where they’d put them, not their pockets. The pockets were for money, keys, a drop loom, or knitting or whatever they were doing at the time.

But women who are educated and smarter than the average rock share that meme and feel so smart, because it plays to the idea “women were oppressed” (or are, due to the lack of pockets in most modern female clothing) so it must be the men’s fault. REEEEEEEEE.

In point of fact, the lack of pockets in most female clothing is because most women don’t like their silhouette with bulges. I’m old enough and fat enough I couldn’t care less, and I’m also ADD AF and have locked myself out of the house enough that I carry my keys in my pockets everywhere. I also carry my phone, because if I grabbed the wrong keys (say) that way I can call Dan.

However, I remember being young and attractive and not wanting bulges on my person.

So in the matter of pockets, the people oppressing women are mostly women.

For a lot of the other stuff, from the fact that we’re more likely to get raped, to the fact that we give birth in pain, etc. the culprit is biology. And you can rail and scream about biology all you want to. The only modifications you can do are after-market and they don’t work.

Thinking that in the middle ages or at any time, women were enslaved by a male conspiracy is both hilarious and sad. Do they imagine all men know each other? communicate through mental telegraph? Send notes to each other? “Bob, we understand you haven’t beaten your wife in three months. Do better.”

Yeah, women had fewer of the rights we consider important — not necessarily them, though — because their functions were less public, and more having to do with keeping the household running, and keeping the kids alive. If you value the public stuff over the household stuff, it’s because you’re living in a post-contraceptive world of such abundance that you know you can birth a single child and your odds he’ll outlive you are enormous. It wasn’t so. Arguably women had the more important job.

Were they beaten and treated like chattel?

Oh, you sweet summer child. Everyone was beaten and treated like chattel. Maybe not the king or the prince heir. (Even then depended where and when.) Men who worked for others could and did get beaten and abused. So did apprentices who were basically sold to their masters and if they got a bad one were treated like little better than slaves.

It is the sad tendency of humans to hurt other humans. Not all humans, of course, but a significant enough majority to cause untold tragedy. And when life was closer to the bone and resources scarcer, the tendency to abuse others was higher. But this wasn’t something done or decided as a group; it’s not passed on by some corruption of the blood; and ALL of us are descended from victims and perpetrators, who were all races, sexes, creeds and orientations.

So… Sometimes things suck. No blame.

Take the places where the Marxist thinking is outright insane today.

Take science fiction. (Remember to give it back. I’m running a month late, so still doing mystery, but sf will be next.)

We hear much about how women were/are terribly discriminated against because the percentage of them who are published/do well is tiny, compared to 51% of the population.

But I was the weird girl who read science fiction, before I wrote it. I wanted to talk about space travel and the best way to create space colonies, and the pitfalls, and– I wanted to discuss if time travel was even possible, and how it could be implemented, and– I wanted to discuss robots and artificial intelligence. I wanted to discuss how if aliens existed we might not even know they were there, because they’d be so different…

Yep, it’s the cartoon with the guy being tossed out the window again. Most of the women in my classes — and I was in gifted classes from 7th grade on — read either romances or historical fiction. Sometimes mystery. Keep in mind that reading for pleasure was already a minority thing (still is. Has always been.) Most of them actually only read newspapers, magazines and non-fiction in their subjects. So the ones who read for fun were already considered weird. But those of us — who am I kidding, for most of that time it was one of me — who read science fiction were the weirdos own weirdos, looked at as though we’d spontaneously grown extra heads and tentacles.

Most of my science fiction reading friends were male, and for a while older. Most of them I met waiting outside book stores on Heinlein release day, but I’ve seen pictures of that time. It wasn’t as stark in the Us, because it’s a huge country, so even a small interest group is big enough to make a showing, but most SF conventions until I want to say the eighties or so were mostly guys.

And even today, you find most women are fans of the TV shows, or of anime, or of fantasy. If you had an SF only con, written only con, it would still be 75% male. And a few of us weirdos.

My question is: why should people who have no interest in reading the stuff be well represented among its writers? What sense does that make?

Well, because if there’s fewer women, they’re oppressed. And that means that someone is oppressing them.

… Because Marxism is a binary and infantile view of reality, and therefore it doesn’t realize that “no blame” exists.

What set me on this path of thought was some disabled activist claiming that difficulties the disabled face would be much less without the normal people.

Think about this for a moment. it’s a group that’s literally defined by being less able to move/do stuff in the real world. But of course, if they are a group, and things aren’t wonderful for them, someone has to be to blame, and it must be their polar opposite. So, if the disabled (differently abled is a lie) have problems, it must, perforce be because the able-bodied are conspiring to keep them down.

Only a mind exquisitely indoctrinated in Marxism can think that way.

Sometimes life just sucks. Sometimes there’s no blame. In fact, probably most of the time.

Every time you come across one of these, ask them in logical steps how this can be the other group’s fault, and what evidence they have.

Because it’s important to get at the cult programing of Marxism and dig under.

Particularly in your own mind.

336 thoughts on “No Blame

    1. “YOU! It’s ALL YOUR fault!”

      “I’m sorry. I just wanted some light. I didn’t expect a whole Universe to pop into existence. Sorry for the inconvenience.”

      “Uh, wha…?”

      “You said it was ALL my fault, and ALL means ALL, so…”

  1. Women were “oppressed” because men wanted to protect them. So, feminism came along to get rid of the “oppression”, but still keep all of the protection and support. So feminists, in general, want privileges without responsibilities. All of this has led to women being far more unhappy, with no husband and no children. Expect to see a lot more demands that the government provide even more support for these women.

    1. That sums up what a lot of the identity politics obsessives/woke/what have you want, actually, all the rights without the responsibilities for the Good People, all the responsibilities without the rights for the Bad People. It never ends well of course but try telling them that…

    2. Women were also “oppressed” because they were tied to the bearing, caring and feeding of little ones (more directly before baby formula and contraceptives) and didn’t have the same freedom to go off to war, or exploring, debating in the assembly, or designing wonderful structures. The ugly little secret that feminists will not tell you is that most of them liked or preferred it that way. (There’s always the exception, but that goes for both men and women) Hence they labor very hard to define success in typically male fields and male terms, and deny or denigrate the more typically feminine forms of success and satisfaction in housekeeping and child-rearing. Sure, there were women who wanted the same freedoms as men. There were also men who resented the demands to go off to war, or stay all day in the mill or the counting house and never got to spend time with their wives or families. Of course, if you were sufficiently wealthy you could usually find someone else to pay to do the more odious parts of whatever job society assigned to you, but but that’s always been true, for both men and women.

  2. Wealth liberates. Poverty enslaves.

    Marxism spreads poverty, thus slavery.

    And the deep, dark secret of Soviet and CCP espionage, is that they observed that the USA was the best in the world at making weird impossibility work (ex: Moon landing), thus they infected us with the virus, cultural AIDS, of Marxism, in the hope we would finally figure out how to make the damn thing work.

    Thus saving the Soviets and CCP from self-imposed doom.

  3. I’m not sure if marxism is completely to blame. In my extended family-by-marriage there are some who prioritize fixing blame over all other considerations. For instance,(I know, extreme example) The house is on fire.
    You say, “get a hose! get an extinguisher!” they say, “Who left the pot on the stove? who left the bathroom heater plugged in?”
    Determining blame is FAR more important than fixing the problem. and trumps all other considerations.
    This I think is the fear of blame being attached to themselves, that they focus on fixing it to someone else as fast as they can.

    1. Yep. The impulse to fix blame is part of human nature; it’s the dark twin of curiosity. Marxism supercharges this dark part of human nature the same way it amplifies and feeds on envy, resentment, and (despite what they tell you) avarice.

      1. Great song in the musical Into the Woods about this. No, of course what really matters
        Is the blame,
        Somebody to blame.
        Fine, if that’s the thing you enjoy,
        Placing the blame,
        If that’s the aim,
        Give me the blame-
        Just give me the boy.
        And then, of course, it goes into the difference between “good” and “nice.” (And “right,” though the Witch is a bit off on that one.)

    1. Yes, slavery makes no economic sense if there are cheaper and better sources of energy.

    1. The Reader thinks you are pretty bold to be doing flybys given the current state of air traffic control in this country.

      1. To paraphrase Captain Jack Sparrow, “What wings really are… is freedom.”

        They are also far more maneuverable than commercial aircraft or balloons, so until I end up being chased by F-22s a la Iron Man, I should be okay.

        Drone might be a problem, though.

        1. Not in Fluffy’s vicinity. Remember a little charcoal from time to time never goes amiss, though.

      2. The aardvark has discovered that the air traffic controllers in this area have learned pretty thoroughly that the only air traffic controller allowed in the immediate vicinity is Fluffy.

  4. The major point the feminists refuse to acknowledge is that women won the right to vote because men voted to allow it. What the Left continually tries to do is destroy the history of the equality movement in this country. The concept of all men being equal from the Revolution and the Constitution. Expanded when we realized that equality wasn’t deniable just because of color or who your parents were. Expanded again when we realized that equality wasn’t deniable because of your sex.

    But then the Left tries to redefine equality as equity, and it just ain’t so. Worse, they push that those with mental illnesses, or incapable of making adult, informed decisions, must have the “right” to force the rest of us to obey their delusions. And they do it to sow chaos and division, for the purpose of dividing and conquering.

    1. “Men shouldn’t rule on women’s rights!”

      “How many female justices voted for Roe in Roe v. Wade?”

  5. And an example of cruelty being used as a marketing device: I play a game which, of course, shows periodic ads. Sometimes the ads are, “Well, this thing isn’t from the US.” As in, “makeover,” games where the handsome men tell you they only want the girl for her money and won’t touch her if she’s “ugly.”
    But the latest ads go for straight sadism/manipulation: a white person (male or female) cuts the rope bridge between a helpless baby dragon and water. (Has to be an orphaned baby, or someone would be barbecue). You must play the Solitaire game and solve it, within a certain time, or the baby dragon will die. ON SCREEN. IN FRONT OF YOU. And this is being marketed as entertainment.
    Yes, it’s “just a game.” And I’m just revolted.

    1. I’ve seen those too, and as best I can tell, the good news is that the actual games are generally not like the ads of them. The bad news is the way the ads encourage callous reactions. There was one for a brick breaking game where I eventually determined that the only winning move was not to play: if I just let the ad/gameplay sampler sit there without interacting, the damsel in distress would stand around looking panicked in ankle deep water, until the ad ended whereas if I actually attempted to break the bricks to free her, the chamber would fill up with water regardless of what move I made.

      1. Sounds like an adaptation of the Kobayashi Maru scenario – you can’t win and you’re not allowed to quit.

        1. Or Wargames “The only way to win is not to play”. Of course the Kobayashi Maru actually had a purpose to show a “No Win” Scenario and to test the candidate in that environment. Which one James T Kirk (or perhaps two if you include the Kelvan timeline) promptly went around.

          As an aside/rant I really dislike the reboot movies (Kelvan timeline). Not because of the actors, they actually do quite well, Not because of the weirded up Enterprise on steroids but because of what they did to Starfleet. In the main timeline Kirk progresses from ensign to captain rapidly, but there’s a back history as to why, and it does still take years, he’s mid thirtys when he first takes the Enterprise (and had likely commanded at least one smaller ship before, The Constitution Class/Starship/Heavy Cruiser are like battleship/carrier commands in the US Navy of Old). In the Kelvan timeline we take a dumbass wet behind the ears kaydet with less knowledge than Ensign Klepperman and make him first officer on the pride of the fleet for no other reason than a nepotistic fondness for his dear departed Dad. As per usual the captain then hies off on his own. That whole nonsense took me out of what was otherwise a nice special effect romp and an ode to Spock and left me sputtering. This was the Brahmandarins warping Star Trek to their own desires plain and simple. It plays to their dumb ass hero worship, their inability to understand that experience particularly adverse experience plays a strong part in forming humans, their innate longing to be ruled by some mythical King (C.F. their turning a second rate president with faults left right and center and more love of cute secretaries (no interns) than Mr. Clinton) in Camelot (Camelot is a silly place lets not go there).
          I mean Star Trek as designed by Roddenberry is full of holes (and we keep forgetting stuff we already know that would solve many plot issues before the first commercial). Rodenberry had his weaknesses note: we’re back to the pretty girls, Nichelle Nichols, Grace Lee Whitney, Majel Barret, (not to mention all the scantily clad walk ons) what is it with that group that this behavior is so rooted in them? And of course the world envisioned by Rodenberry is the socialistic sweet by and by with no money no wars In fact for TNG he forbid conflict and inserted stylized unenlightened Capitalists (which had a rather unpleasant taste of anti antisemitism) to replace the warlike Klingon and Romulans. He then kicked the bucket about 3rd season and things improved somewhat.

            1. Harry Potter lived a miserable life that no one should ever want to endure themselves. I’ll grant that so do most protagonists, and it ended semi-well. But the sort of PTSD, survivor’s guilt, and could’a-would’a-should’a that he probably endured after the fact are a burden I wouldn’t wish on anyone.

              Learning that suicide-by-dark-lord is not only a sometimes tempting idea (just get it over with and prevent more people from dying for me), but truly necessary… yeah, that’s not going to leave anyone in a good place, mentally speaking.

                1. I read a piece a few months ago about why the Chosen One is such a bad meme. Some great destiny is bestowed upon The Chosen One through an accident of birth or circumstance, even though he did nothing to earn it, nor was prepared to be worthy of it.

                  I suppose that’s the appeal for small minds — you don’t have to be worthy of greatness, it can just happen to you.

                  1. See, a good author can probably make an excellent story out of that trope despite its flaws. Because then the hero has to work to be worthy of it. And there’s the internal conflicts of ‘I never chose this, why do I have to be the one to suffer like this…’ and ‘I can’t do this, I’m not enough, I’ll never be enough…’

                    Then the clever villains whisper in the hero’s ear, encouraging their doubts and offering them a chance to get out of their ‘Destiny.’ Palpatine used Anakin’s arrogance and fear, Voldemort could have tried to exploit Harry’s feelings of isolation and the Dursley’s abuse…

                    Maybe I’ll try that sometime. Not this book, but maybe the next.

                    1. Pretty much all of the “THIS IS A BAD TROPE” write ups boil down to “this is a story which is possible to use poorly, and it doesn’t have the advantage of novelty.”

                    2. I think it’s broader than that– actually, you’ve even poitned this out.

                      They don’t understand how/why ANYTHING works, they just pick bits they think are nice and put in what else they think is nice, and then are upset when it doesn’t work.

                      Like going “hey, I like garlic, and ice cream, and BBQ, and coffee– why does this milkshake taste so bad?”

                    3. Yeah but most of the latest fantasy etc, the person particularly if female is just naturally perfect and never has to work.
                      Like whatsshername in Star Wars.

                    4. Christopher Nuttall’s School In Magic is an example IMO of a “Chosen One” done right.

                      The main character, Emily, was kidnapped from Earth by an evil sorcerer to sacrifice to “evil gods”.

                      He asked for a “Child Of Destiny” which was a person who changes greatly the world.

                      Now Emily rejected the idea that she was that sort of Child Of Destiny especially since her mother’s first name is Destiny.

                      So from the first, there’s the idea that the evil sorcerer was “tricked” by the magical beings that he commanded to kidnap a “Child Of Destiny”.

                      However, while Emily works very hard to master the magic she possess and has to struggle against opposition in this “Nameless World” that has become her home, there are things that happen that make her look like a True Child Of Destiny.

                      Just sharing ideas from Earth to people in her new world are changing the Nameless World, hopefully for the better.

                      She’s not a perfect person and would be the first to deny that she is but she does make decisions that make her appear to be a “Child Of Destiny”.

                      Note, there’s one Big Event in the Series that if known by others, would Show Her As A True Child of Destiny, but I want to avoid spoilers. 😉

                    5. The problem is Harry had exactly the same childhood of isolation as Voldermort. Different setting. Difference is Harry was bullied, Voldermort was the bully. All Voldermort knew was that the boy born August was going to kill him. Therefore Voldermort had to kill the boy. Doesn’t matter that Voldermort could have tempted/appealed to Harry over the isolation and Dursley’s abuse/bulling/neglect. Also note Harry could have been arrogant about being the “chosen one”. He denied it. He downplayed it. He refused the mantle.

                    6. See Diane Duane’s “Young Wizards” series for excellent examples of this.
                      Yes, I know she’s a leftist but she is a tremendous writer. Heinlein once wrote her a fan letter…

                    7. Easiest way to do it is take the focus away from the end result of glory (which isn’t guaranteed in story, anyway) and put it on SOMEONE has to do something… crap I’m the Someone, while pretty much everyone else is running around going ‘not it!’

                2. What I really love is the way they called him “The Chosen One” without the least reference to anyone doing any choosing of him

                  1. John Ringo’s Special Circumstances series started with the question of “who chooses the Chosen One”.

                    His main character in the first of the series “Princess Of Wands” is a Christian woman who is basically Chosen by God to handle certain things.

                    While she has been maneuvered to be in the Right Place & Time & her upbringing has given the skills needed, she definitely accepts her “Chosen” status.

                    Oh, she doesn’t have it easy in either of the books.

                  2. And now I have an amusing interaction for later, where a Main Character discovers they’re ‘The Chosen One’ all of a sudden.

                    First reaction is: “Nope. Nope, not happening. Not a chance.”

                    After brief reflection (venting to a best friend who’s very good at listening), second reaction is: “Who even chooses the ‘Chosen One,’ anyway? No one ever says.”

                    Friend: “Typically, tales say it’s the gods who choose a righteous man to accomplish their tasks.”

                    MC: “Well, there’s no chance of my getting this done. And I’m not righteous in the least. So which drunken, mad idiot of a god chose me?”

                    The god in question, sitting in the corner: “Ahem.”

                    1. Which, if you’ve ever read Weber’s Bahzell books, was more or less Bahzell’s reaction, and Tomanak’s response.

                    2. Well, Tomahawk IS the god of War, so you would expect him to “tailor the ordnance to the mission. ” 😇

                    3. He’s also the God of Strategy, so he sent his little sister (because she had a connection with Bahzell’s friend) to convince Bahzell to at least listen to her big brother. 😉

                    4. I have a chosen one where it’s, essentially his own sense of duty that does the choosing at least initially. He can’t just stand by and hope someone else deals with the problem, whether he can succeed at fixing it or not is largely irrelevant to the matter.

            2. Goes back past that; I would say that Taran, or Bilbo, or Frodo would all fit that.

              The idea is old. I’m not sure what is making all the recent examples so bad.

              1. I think a lot of the problem is the “If you’re the Chosen One, you’re better than everyone else and will automatically succeed” perspective. (Rey, for example.)

                As opposed to “If you’re the Chosen One, you’re going to suffer, learn, grow, and overcome challenges to achieve the final goal.” (Harry Potter, and the more classical heroes.)

                1. I think you have noted the problem. Indeed Harry Potter becomes quite the jerk in Order of The Phoenix book 5. He also learns (warning Potential spoiler on a 10 + myear old book) that he (and we) have misunderstood Snape throughout the whole series.

                  1. he (and we) have misunderstood Snape throughout the whole series.

                    Not exactly. Harry (and we) misunderstood Snape’s Motivation. We don’t misunderstand Snape’s animosity. Snape put the sins of the father on the son, and none of the virtues of his mother. From the snatches we get of Snape’s interaction with James, well, James was a jerk. James was to Snape that Draco was to Harry. After all Snape’s motivation was to keep Harry alive so he could perish at the correct time. That was what he was told needed to be done by Dumbledore. His motivation was revenge for Lilly’s killing, not protecting Jame’s son. In the end Harry had it in him to forgive Snape.

              2. I think it’s another example of reversed cause and effect. The chosen one isn’t a ‘glorious destiny’ in the old ones. It’s a great RESPONSIBILITY. It’s an impossible task that you must do or Bad Things Happen. Succeeding at the impossible gives the glory, not being the poor sap who has to DO the impossible. So most of the bad ones see the end result of Get Glory or see the people around the hero who fawn over the hero, often for their own purposes and take that to be the point rather than ‘Hero has impossible task that only he/she/it/kumquat can do that they’re often unsuited for, if they succeed they might still die.’

                I blame at least partially, the guy who did Rick and Morty he took the Hero’s journey and laid it out in a wheel that reversed a lot of the cause and effect ‘you get glory then you do something worthy of it.’ And I couldn’t get a lot of folk to see why this was a problem. Though I’m not sure if he’s mostly a symptom or not.

                1. I don’t know if it would WORK, but you can try the same tactics used for pointing out why skinsuiting (well, any other skinsuiting) doesn’t work.

                  1. Probably not with the guy I was arguing with (He couldn’t get past ‘you think you know better than the guy who wrote this fabulously popular thing?’) but I’ll tuck it away for the future. I can think of some folk it probably WOULD help with.

          1. Roger on the War Games; I thought of that too.

            As for the later ST series, I dropped out after the end of the original; I watched a couple of the later episodes but they never caught my interest. My wife liked them, though.

            1. My daughters enjoyed them though that may be more on Chris Pine and Zacharey Quinto then the scripts…

                  1. I will have to say that Benedict Cumberbatch had me rooting for Khan against the Federation. He has an amazing amount of charisma.

  6. Re, “Women didn’t have pockets because oppression,” my first thought was, “Huh? Have they never heard of belt pouches?” and then saw you’d covered it. For that matter, have they never heard of market baskets or basketry in general? You’ve got to have something to haul things back from the market.

    1. Indeed – and tie-on pockets, worn under 18th century outfits, with slits in the sides of the skirt to facilitate access. And reticules, tie-on pouches as Dorothy said, and chatelaine sets with all kinds of useful little tools and purses…
      Women not allowed to have pockets in their clothes … because? I can hear a chorus of female period costume enthusiasts screaming denunciations of such a stupid statement from all the way over here.

      1. And yes, there were sumptuary laws aimed at women (Dante fulminates in the Divine Comedy about Florentine women so shameless they have to be forced to hide their nipples), but they were also something that could apply to men, on a class basis.
        (And I still fondly remember my first royal court in the SCA, with the lady who’d cut her Tudor bodice just a tad too low, so I was entertained (and put aback) by glancing to see if her nipple had popped up again, which it did. Several times).

        1. Oh yes, men had sumptuary laws. England had rules about who could wear which fur, how much annual income you had to have to wear what weight and pattern of fabric, all sorts of things. Lots of places passed multiple laws to keep apprentices from looking like masters, and rich commoners from being mistaken for nobles. Sometimes it was disguised as “keeping the workers from going broke by buying fancy clothing instead of food and fuel.” In other cases it was flat out “enforce the social order put in place by G-d by forbidding servants to dress like masters.”

          1. The stated purpose of Elizabethan sumptuary laws was to save young men, who would otherwise be very serviceable for the kingdom, from ruinous debt.

        2. They were also things you could see. As Celia pointed out, your pockets in the clothing of the time, would require every woman to be stopped and searched. BAH.

        3. Carpet tape may not be period, but don’t forget the “Creative” part of the organization.

          1. I don’t know, maybe she was showing off.
            Now, “creative,” was Duchess Sedalia’s full Tudor done in camouflage fabric.

            1. The obvious fix for a low bodice, in period, was a bit of cloth or some ribbands. Given how many things that most Scadians have in their reticules, you cannot tell me that she couldn’t have found a hankie or a piece of paper to block the view. (Or just held her carried stuff up to her bosom, or adopted a pose with her hands.)

              It is possible that she did not think about this because she was distressed, but it is likely that she was putting on a show.

      2. As far as I can tell, women’s clothing having no pockets when the garment clearly could and should is a modern thing — perpetrated on women by other women who should know better. Ask my wife what she thinks about all those women’s jeans with things sewn on that only LOOK like pockets, and you’d better have your ears pinned back.

        1. She’s not alone; what my wife has to say about “pockets” in jeans that won’t even hold a ring of keys isn’t printable.

          1. All my skirts have pockets. Or else. In fact, I based my performance black outfit based on the official dress code (skirt to knee or longer with black tights or hose, or black slacks, et cetera) and “does this skirt have pockets?” We can’t carry handbags on stage, so pockets are a must!

        2. I don’t know offhand how true it is, but I read somewhere once that a lot of womens’ high fashion is created by gay males who want to be petty jerks to women.

          Given some of the stuff seen in photos of fashion shows I’ve came across over the years, I suspect there’s at least a kernel of truth in that. 😛

          1. I read a gal who said that she saw Alexander MacQueen in a restaurant, stared at the rude fat guy, and wanted to go over and belabor him with a large blunt object for the horrible things his clothes did to women (made them look terrible unless the women were anorexic and built like teenage males.)

            1. I wish I could remember which Danny Kaye movie had a skit with him as a fashion designer. The song he sang ended with “I hate women”. Knowing the caliber of possessors of arcane trivia who lurks here, I’m sure someone will know.

                1. That’s the skit I remember. I just don’t remember the movie. Next I need to find a Chalice with a Palace. Or maybe a Flagon with a Dragon, that could bring in even more gold for Fluffy.

                  1. I think Fluffy would approve of “Embrace the power of AND!”

                    You might even get extra nice BBQ out of it.

  7. Star Trek had a huge influence on convention and fandom demographics, because it was so (comparatively) woman-heavy. And there was room to do girly things, like female cosplay or writing romance adventure fanfic.

    But mostly, ST brought in more fans of both sexes.

    The other day, Az from Heel vs Babyface was streaming Conan: Exiles. He has streamed various games with male and female YouTubers, but this was the first one with costuming and body customization to a huge extent. You start getting clothes among your loot at some point.

    Two of the female streamers immediately stopped to try on different outfits, and to alter their characters’ bodies to better suit their outfits. And to discuss their characters’ bodies in detail. And to pick out skimpy outfits for their viewers’ benefit and their own fun.

    Poor Az was so embarrassed… It was like a guy hearing the conversations in a women’s bathroom.

    And then, later, the two women ended up looting and raising “cute pets.” They were supposed to be livestock for breeding, but they are pets now.

    It was hilarious social commentary, honestly. They are much less girly separately than together.

    1. And yet I’m known as the clothes horse of my guild because I’m constantly trying on new appearance gear. Although my favorite default is a look of blue jeans, white t-shirt, cowboy boots, and an Indiana Jones hat, with my glowing fists of doom.

      1. There are lots of games with the cosmetic armor stuff, and yes, guys love it. But as a woman speaking about women, they were definitely on the obsessed shopper side of things.

        Not a surprise, knowing their personalities.

        Lots of other female streamers are more blase. Including ones who joined the stream later. Which just made it more hilarious.

      2. My X-COM 2 campaigns get delayed when a new outfit mod pack comes out. whistles innocently

    2. Women like to look pretty. Period. Even in video games The degree to which this is important will vary from woman to woman, but it’s true. Case in point, when World of Warcraft launched, none of the races on the Horde side were particularly attractive. The first expansion added the Blood Elves, which filled this niche. And I soon saw comments from guys playing Horde characters stating that the only reason their girlfriend agreed to play as part of the Horde was because they could play a pretty Blood Elf.

      It actually got to be hilarious because I’d see players complain about how the Blood Elves added a pretty option to the Horde, I’d bring this up, and guys would join in confirming it.

        1. And I, for one, enthusiastically support this movement!

          (I’ve heard that if you pick up a suit from Goodwill and have it tailored to fit you, it’ll look better than a thousand-dollar suit off-the-rack ever will. Just a friendly tip. 😉)

        2. Oh, Lord. When I was doing covers for the musketeers first time around, I had to rely on stock photos.
          It was an impossible task. A man with a sword in his hands will have an idiotic smile on his face. You cannot make him serious or smart-looking.

          1. 😀 That’s because swords are so…fecking…awesome.

            Holding a real sword is a lot like that moment when you shoot a reactive target and hit it right on the money — exploding a water jug or a Tannerite target with a rifle, for instance — and that gleeful emotion just bursts out of you. But unlike the fleeting moment when a bullet speeds downrange, that gleeful feeling lasts as long as you’re holding the sword, which I’m sure really messes with the aesthetics of a photoshoot.

            1. Oh yeah. I really, really want a karabela. Can’t justify it, even “it’s research, really!” but it looks like it would be perfect for me. Aside from length, perhaps, since I don’t fight on horseback. But still, a karabela in hand!

      1. When I started playing Mass Effect, there was a “FemShep” fan topic on the Bioware forums. A lot of the good looking FemSheps were made by female players, even to the point of adding modded texture files to get the looks they wanted.

    3. On another note…

      “Body customization”

      Conan: Exiles allows players with male characters to customize the size of the character’s “package”. And has the option (not available on the official game servers, IIRC) to allow full nudity when your character has nothing on instead of the usual “mandatory bra and panties/briefs” that most games use ehena character isn’t wearing anything.

      1. Yup. And there was also Az vs Shadiversity castle building. And Shad as Red Sonja the civil engineer.

        X Ray Girl and Nina Infinity were the ones who went hogwild on shopping.

        Az got all his NPCs matched sets of Japanese armor, and he was showing off his.

        Unfortunately the server was not good, so Az went on to play Resident Evil. But it was fun while it lasted.

      2. Entire DLC packages that are just objects to play with or pretty clothes.

        They’re apparently selling.

  8. Point of information, dear hostess,

    I do not, nor have I ever, had a wife. Had I had one, I would never have beaten her. Ever.

    Thank you for your attention.


  9. You are spot on about the planning fallacy. In my little world, that fallacy focuses on the Fed. If you look up any description of how interest rates are “set,” the first words you’ll see are policymakers, or central banks, or the Fed. If you read any commentary about the economy or the markets it’s the Fed this, or the Fed that. Even here. In fact, unless the Fed is magic and causality flows backwards in time, they do none of those things. What they actually do is follow the bond market with a fairly long lag, and talk talk talk. I can prove this with data, unless of course they’re magic, but I don’t believe in magic and planning, and Marxism, and the Trilateral commission, and the WEF is just magic. All they do is talk. Their power comes from people believing them.

    1. I’m sniffing a bit of desperation from Mr. Powell. Of course, he is between a rock and a hard place, but I assume he wanted the job, so my sympathy is real, but limited.

    2. I’ve also seen a tweet about the Fed unveiling digital currency in the context of our slow-rolling bank maybe-crisis. THAT scares me.

      1. That’s what they do, they cover their failure by expanding their scope. 5he frightening thing, to me, is that I believe they believe. I’d really rather they were rogues than fools. Rogues tend to be more rational. True believers are dangerous.

        There’s a chart floating around showing the 2 year treasury vs the Fed Funds rate. Jeff Gundlach had it on the blue bird place, but it’s making the rounds. It clearly shows the Fed reacting to the market not the market reacting to the Fed.

        1. That makes more sense than sacrificing a goat on the keyboard at midnight. (Grin).

      2. Dave Cullen (Computing Forever), has done a few videos on this topic. I follow him on Bitchute. Bad things are happening, and not just in the US.

    3. There seem to be some crazy physicists speculating about some sort of anti-causal information transfer.

      There’s a certain amount of ‘how persuaded are we that time reversed and/or psychic information transfer between humans is impossible?’

      We can diagram information, and flow, show decisions and how they propagate, in careful and tedious detail, and it will still fail to be entirely persuasive to people on the other side of that theoretical divide.

      1. Oddly enough. Backward causation has been proposed seriously in economics. The theory must be upheld. Period

        1. Someone rational instead of rationalizing might be a bit rare.

          Rational, you have assumptions, and the interactions of those assumptions produce conclusions.

          Rationalizing, you have weights on conclusions, and you work back to the assumptions you need. If your most important conclusion implies an improbable assumption, you are going to find yourself converging on that assumption as the alternative rationalizations are demolished. Of course, quite a lot of people aren’t self-consistent enough to take rationalizing even that far.

          I’ve probably caught myself rationalizing, but I can’t recall easy examples. One explanation is that my self-monitoring isn’t sensitive enough. Another is that maybe my memory is pretty bad. Definitely, some of the likely examples I’m not up to tackling in the time I have allowed myself.

          Quite a lot of theory obsessives are not indifferent to which of the alternative theories gets considered to be correct. Some times this works for the good, some times for the bad.

        2. The Reader wonders if you are volunteering to write the seminal work in the new field of Quantum Economics. Richard Feynman smiles.

        3. Backward information transfer MIGHT exist. There is barely razor thin evidence for it. Stuff like if you study afterwards you’ll perform better on a test. Or the premonitions people have.
          It’s more than chance, but hard to pin down, as it doesn’t seem equally distributed.
          OTOH that’s not the same as backward causation except on a band so thin (An A instead of a B on a test, or perhaps barely passing) that it’s irrelevant in the end.

          1. Possible example of backwards information transfer, though I suspect it was the Almighty’ s sense of humor: this morning, over the breakfast table, we worked out a bit for the children’s sermon involving our dragon’s “borrowing,” my Rocket City Trash Pandas’ baseball cap. (I also suspect they’re the Trash Pandas and not the Rocket City Raccoons because the owners wished to avoid the Wrath of the House of Mouse).
            So Avrim T. Dragon III wore my Trash Panda hat. And the preacher announced (in Sunday school, before he knew about the hat) that he had originally titled his message, “Let’s Talk Trash.”

      1. Haven’t you seen the piece doubting the ethics of bug-farming? Apparently the only thing that’s really ethical is to live of air, water, sunlight, and a bit of dirt like the plants do. I highly recommend such a lifestyle for those who advocate it if they can manage the physical transformation from obligate omnivore, since they already have the requisite lack of brains.

        1. Bloom County had a bit like this. Binkley (I think it was him) first guilted the group into vegetarianism to avoid killing animals for meat. But he then followed that thinking to its inevitable conclusion, and ended with all of the members of the group hanging upside down from a tree (to avoid stepping on bugs) and masked (to avoid breathing in and subsequently killing bacteria).

      2. I’d like to see them eaten up by bugs. Which is a bit of a shock if you’re not quite dead.

      3. Our local school district had a English teacher assign the middle schoolers an essay on the benefits of eating bugs. They were not allowed to write a dissenting opinion.

        1. Oh, I know! Write up a long paragraph about the nutritional qualities of bugs, the benefits of eliminating insect pests, and then end it with:

          …if I was a gecko. 😛

          1. I’d have gone deeply, deeply ironic.
            You know, how it’s great because overtime it will deforest the Earth (Bugs eat A LOT) and destroy humans. so the Earth will be at peace and empty.

            1. To be clear. I eat the chicken, who eats the bugs. Like I eat grass and other shrubs. The meat I eat, eats the grass, etc.

        2. My mom would’ve helped me bash out an article on the tactical benefits of keeping a population starving, think in the theme of The Prince.

          Hey, it IS an argument in support!

    4. Yeah. Watching the latest rounds of stuff unfold, I find myself actually wondering if the fed may well really be a net negative.

      Everyone sees them as a safety net and has the idea that they are able to steer the market to gov’t policy aims, but it just seems more like a combination of illusions and false premises that can only result in market distortion.

      1. There is absolutely no doubt that the Fed is a net negative.
        That’s because counterfeiting is theft.

  10. Having laughed about girly things, I just freaked out upon discovering that Mr. Toad from last fall had hibernated in my houseplants that I brought inside, and that he was now awake.

    In my defense, he is apparently really fast at diving under the soil.

    He is now outside, because having pets is not allowed without an extra fee. Go back and hibernate, or find a comfy spring home.

  11. Not The Bee has run an article or two about the burgeoning Putin/Xi ‘friendship’ thing going on. (Have they made bracelets yet?)

    I found myself wondering how long it’d last, particularly when someone commented on it here. I think their theory was ‘Russia exhausts itself against Ukraine, then China betrays whatever agreement was made by gobbling up Siberia.’

    But I’m not sure Putin’s naive or arrogant enough not to expect that. It’s possible, perhaps even likely, but I’m not certain.

    Then this popped into my head –

    Xi: “Why? Why did you do this?”
    Putin: “To guarantee your cooperation! And because, sooner or later, you would do it to me! As we are returning to the old ways, Xi, and poison was always the instrument of choice in the Motherland, being something of a sentimentalist, I got here first.”

    1. Now I have the image of Putin and Xi with Centauri hairdos in my head, and I can’t get it out! (Not that either of them could hold a candle to Londo–or even Lord Refa for that matter…)

        1. Indeed! I am of the party that believes Londo is the true lynchpin of the series (something that was retconned in the “Legions of Fire” trilogy by Peter David, I believe.)

          1. Well, the entire arc of the series runs from Lando’s meeting with Earthgov in “In the Beginning” to his death/libration at G’Kar’s hands decades later.

        2. You’re forgetting G’kar.
          Londo: “Perhaps it was something I said?”
          G’Kar: “Perhaps it is everything you say.”

          1. Harlan Ellison’s, “The View From the Gallery,” had the best Londo/G’Kar,” comment, from one of thr maintenance guys: “How long have they been married?”

      1. They’re both Emperor Cartagia.
        Vir: “Remember when I said there’s got to be a better way?”
        Londo: “Yes…”
        Vir: “I was wrong. Kill him.”

          1. And Here we have another chance to embrace the power of AND . Insane AND Evil.

              1. I’m not quite sure its always per se insane. I think rather it comes from an inability to effectively discern cause and effect. They don’t realize that (to steal a worn out statement from Stan Lee) “With great power comes great responsibility” likely that should really be greater . Infinite control implies infinite responsibility, and requires infinite knowledge/information to exercise. Folks that want lots of power tend to be VERY selfish/narcissistic, and narcissists are never responsible from their point of view. Of course here I’ve come back around to them being mentally unhinged, so perhaps it is insane to want that kind of power.

        1. Nah, there’s a whole bunch of Cartagias here.

          (…and a mime is a terrible thing, and must be wasted. Er, wait.)

      1. Well, neither country has made threats against Mongolia. So they’re not likely to split a country first before the inevitable falling out.

        1. Which brings up a bit of trivia: Albania was the only European Chinese Communist satellite, back in the day. Radio Tirana was, ahem, strange.

  12. All I can think of seeing this is “the oppression is coming from inside the revolution!!!” Women are now being shown on the left to be totally unable to hold a candle against Women+. The women with penises are taking the label Woman for themselves and leaving real women with the label “menstruaters” and “birthing people”. You say you’re women?!? Pshaw, you can’t even compete with women+!! Do better “people with crevices”!!!!!

    1. I think you mean “people with cervices.” (Or “cervixes.”) Dear Lord, I hope you mean “people with cervices.”

      Brain bleach costs so much these days, and it’s never on sale when you need it.

      Actually replying to the point, I could go on a long, somewhat self-centered disquisition from personal experience about how an amateur fiftyish distance runner is usually a match, or better, for the fastest women in five-Ks and such. Consider it to have been made, explaining why I’m not that surprised about the news of a 50-plus male winning women’s bicycle races against opponents half his age, and feeling like a superhero for it.

      There, I am willing to assign blame. Not to the women, unless it’s the ones who shrug and say “I guess I’ll have to put up with it.” If you think that, I guess you will.

    2. My comment when a transwoman won a major beauty contest was “See, men are better at everything, including being women”. was snark, but painfully true.

      1. They claim, at the same time, that:

        Women are better than men
        Men make the best women

  13. I love learning new things. I think it’s part of our tribe to be constantly snuffling among the leaves of life, seeing what will turn up. I recently came across “The Devil’s Guard,” a non-fiction (maybe) story about former German officers joining the Foreign Legion and fighting the communists in Viet Nam.

    This was an eye-opener, and so tragic too. We sent American soldiers into that meat grinder without any plan to win. The Devil’s Guard hated communists and knew how to fight them. We didn’t. I’ve read a lot of books about Viet Nam, and never realized until now that they were mostly infected with Marxism. “The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien, is an example. The atrocities in the book are all committed by Americans. There is no mention of communists. The bombs that kill and maim the American soldiers fall magically out of the sky. You end the book sad and confused and sorry for what America did. Unknowingly, you end up feeling that America is the bad guy. Mission accomplished. It’s a beautifully written book, slipping the poison in so subtly you don’t realize it.

    You can’t recover until you realize you’ve been poisoned. I see more and more people recovering every day, and it’s encouraging. I’m one of them.

    1. Sorry, THAT book is so shitty. From the get go. And they make people read it in school.
      I don’t find it beautifully written. It’s well copyeditted but not only is it full of lies, it’s turgid, incompetent and self-indulgent.

    2. Oh yeah, I remember that book. Had to read it in high school (I think). I remember sort-of enjoying it the first time I read it – though in my defense I’d gladly devour anything military-related at that age – but I couldn’t finish it the second time I read it. I missed the Marxism, but it was just so f***ing boring and depressing.

  14. “Everyone was beaten and treated like chattel. Maybe not the king or the prince heir. (Even then depended where and when.)”

    See Frederick the Great, Early Life of.

    1. To revise “Monty Python and the Holy Grail”:
      “How do you know he’s king?”
      “Because he hasn’t got bruises all over him”

        1. Last crown list I watched, long ago, was a group of rinohides demonstrating chivalry and honor, by repeatedly failing to admit blows that literally staggered themselves.

          And no one else seemed uncomfortable with crown going to the worst cheater, reliably.

          If -that- is chivalry, I am going to hang out with the mundanes.

          1. Some knightly households are proof we recreated the worst parts of the Middle Ages, especially the infighting.

            1. It is very easy for someone to be so adrenaline blinded and deafened that they don’t notice blows, and the honor system rewards berserking in this minor way. Big problem.

              1. Those things called “marshals” are tasked with ensuring bouts conform to the rules.

                Apparently, they were also unfamiliar with the rules. Otherwise they would be active collaborators.

                Pennsic 33 was fun. It was the last time Mom was able to attend an event. I played helper/escort to “Her Ladyship …” . Also discovered a childhood acquaintance was Ubar of the Tuchucks.

    2. I joke that if someone’s last name is “the Great,” it means they had a horrible family life. See: Peter, Catherine, Frederick. Alfred “only” lost all his male relatives to Vikings and other hazards of the job.

      1. Frederick’s papa was Frederick William, a piece of work known for having tall men kidnapped all over Europe and impressed into his brigade of giants. He was known for randomly kicking and caning people on the streets regardless of rank.

        Not a desirable fate to be his bookish, artsy, intellectual firstborn!

        “The flute was broken: the French books were sent out of the palace: the Prince was kicked and cudgelled, and pulled by the hair. At dinner the plates were hurled at his head: sometimes he was restricted to bread and water: sometimes he was forced to swallow food so nauseous that he could not keep it on his stomach. Once his father knocked him down, dragged him along the floor to a window, and was with difficulty prevented from strangling him with the cord of the curtain.”

        From Macaulay’s disturbingly entertaining essay.

    3. I’m with Christopher Duffy in thinking that Der Alte Fritz is one of those people you like less the more you know about them. Maria Theresa Vivat!

      1. Agreed. The milk of human kindness curdled in his presence. Yes, he had some amazing victories, and had really good subordinates who pulled his proverbial chestnuts out of the fire more than a few times, as well.

  15. Regarding women and education. What I learned is if the family valued education the girls were educated along with their brothers. Why? Mom was often the one teaching them, while doing the housework. Mom was the one overseeing household and barnyard chores. Mom was the one earning, and counting, money from the efforts of her produce (“egg money”). Extra eggs, extra out of her garden, spun extra wool. Boys often ended education, or lessens, when either apprenticed to a trade, or joined dad in the fields and on the range. Even if families joined together to employ a teacher, it was the older boys who started the school year late in the fall, and left late in the spring. They were needed in the fields and on the range. The bigger they were, the sooner they were needed. Teachers were often young unmarried women. Teaching was not a high paid option. People couldn’t afford it. Note, if the family didn’t value education, none of the kids were educated. If sister couldn’t read, or do basic math, neither could brother.

    College? Few people finished HS, let alone went to a college. I don’t care what sex they were. Both my grandmothers had more education than their bothers, because of the above regarding farming families. Heck my maternal grandfather’s older sisters had to fight their folks to keep him in school past age 12 because he was “needed at home” to take care of the parents and the farm. My paternal grandfather was lucky to be apprenticed first to a surveyor putting him on the road to civil engineering.

    1. “School teacher,” could be a higher-status woman’s job, at least in the South.

  16. “Differently abled” is one of my pet hates. (I keep it under the stairs and feed it fell meats. It’s getting pretty big.) I fear I feel a rant coming on.


    First of all, “able” is not a verb in the English language. Abled is not a word. Even spellcheck knows that. ENabled is a word, and a verb, so use that one. Idiots.

    Second, “different” implies equivalent, which is the intention of the circumlocution. The “differently abled” person is in all ways equal to the “normally abled” person, in this happy-slappy theory. It is a pretty hard sell when you’re talking about a head injury patient in a power wheelchair with a seeing-eye dog. That able is -really- different.

    Third, there is the insidious and to my mind evil Cult of Normalcy raising its head here. This is an un-intended consequence of the fuzzy-wuzzy formulation cooked up by tiny little academic minds. Trying to do one thing but ending up with the opposite, as usual. “Differently abled” immediately brings the question: “different to what, Karen?”

    Well, different to Normal, of course. Tiny-brained academics try to get away from the worship of the Holy Normal, but being quite stupid, they can’t get far. What they really want is to make you Normal, because they get queasy when they see something “different”.

    Normal is an OPINION, unless you are talking about statistics. Normal, in medicine, means the majority. The largest number of people, the middle of the bulge in the bell curve. It is not something to aim for, because you can generally do better. Also not necessarily a good thing, as in some populations it is “normal” to have intestinal parasites.

    Functional, by contrast, is a measurable trait. Can the patient do the tasks of daily living or not? If not, what assistance do they need? You can measure that.

    And as the Bard said, “If you can’t measure it, it ain’t science.”

    Here endeth the rant.

    1. Most folks try to remain normal to the floor.

      Because parallel to the floor is generally not a useful position.

      Then there’s the uproar somebody commented on about a week ago, where the snowflakes were all Offended! over a computer game because the Evil Overlord’s Evil Fortress was not wheelchair-accessible.
      Not everybody should go to college. Some folks, you send ’em to college and you just wind up with an educated idiot.

      1. Seriously? Wheelchair accessibility? In a -game-? That’s reaching, even for the snowflakes.

        I know of a real-life case where the City of Hamilton spent quite a lot of money making the second-floor bathroom of a fire hall wheelchair accessible. For all the wheelchair-bound firefighters, you know. The ones that got carried up the stairs, due to the no-elevator condition.

        1. Worse than that: Since it was the Evil Overlord’s Castle they should have expected that it wouldn’t be accessible.

          Because it’s the Evil Overlord’s Castle. If not having wheelchair access is evil, that’s perfectly on brand for the EVIL OVERLORD.

          ..which honestly should have been the developer’s response.

          “He’s evil, what else did you expect?”

          1. Evil Overlords have a tendency to want to dispose of those they consider damaged or lesser. Consider one Adolf Hitler, or perhaps Margaret Sanger 🙂 .

            1. On the other hand, one must consider that if one requires wheels to move, perhaps storming castles is not a desirable occupation. cough toostupidtolive cough

              Though I admit that the whole “let’s put wheelchairs in D&D” thing from the other year just smacks of a lack of imagination on the parts of the game designers. (especially as illustrated, with wooden wheels/tires)

              The rules already include things that should prevent or repair crippling injury, like rings and spells of regeneration and magical healing. It includes levitation spells. It includes magically powered constructs – which one could artifice either as leg/body braces to walk and move normally or a legged creature that one could ride.

              Which mean that the only reason your character should be going around on wheels (in trackless wilderness through brush and over rocks and cliffs, or on unpaved dirt tracks, on in cobbled cities) is because they are low level and desperately poor.

                1. I didn’t think he needed a wheelchair.

                  In any event, he lived to a very ripe old age in a career that could kill you at a young age. I don’t pity the idiots who forgot that and challenged him.

                  Of course, the author was on his side. 😉

                2. That was Mad Hamish, and unlike the illustrations in the D&D supplements, his wheelchair had spikes.

                  And Discworld’s magic is notable for how seldom it is practiced, so that’s a different case from a magic-abundant D&D world.

                  1. I’m not saying that one couldn’t, with sufficient ingenuity, come up with an all-terrain battle wheelchair.

                    I’m saying that better options already exist in the setting, including healing so you don’t need a chair at all.

      2. All part of Evil Overlord’s Plan, obviously.

        Also, you’re fighting him because he’s evil, remember? Why would an evil-bad person inconvenience themselves to make things easier on other people? That’s not the point!

        1. One does get the impression that the snowflakes don’t actually understand the concept of “evil”

            1. Not quite sure I agree. What the snowflakes have is a worldview that has no absolutes. If there is no absolute good then there is no absolute evil. Its a matter of purpose, The ends justify the means. I think this is part and parcel of why communism (or the French Revolution, or any movement which attempts to remove an absolute standard of Good and Evil (usually based on religion) very quickly descends into the hell of Pol Pot and Mao and on and on.

              1. The hell of Mao was because it was Mao. Based on what I know about him, he seems to have been a petty sadist who lusted after power and was jealous of perogatives. Or in short, the kind of person who will do anything and everything to get power, and should also never be allowed anywhere near it. He may have believed communism when he joined the party. But I suspect before long he didn’t really care, and merely saw it as a means to justify his getting and retaining power (both in China, and internationally). The PRC still likely would have made a lot of stupid mistakes if someone other than Mao had been in charge. But I don’t think the famine would have lasted as long (assuming it had even started; part of the reason why it started to begin with was because Mao was giving food away to other countries).

          1. An EVIL overlord would have stairs, yes, but not even normal stairs. The steps would be just a bit too narrow, at least in spots. And the height would vary so it would be easy for someone not paying attention to stumble and fall down them.

            1. Well, the Evil Overlord would have reasons to make it easy for his servants/slaves/minions and soldiers to get around safely in his fortress.

              However, He would have plenty of reasons to make it extremely difficult to ENTER his fortress.

              Note, it’s reasonable Him to make it easy to get lost inside his fortress for his servants/slaves/minions and soldiers.

              Individuals who “belong” in his fortress would have “helpers” to aid in them learning their ways around.

              Invaders deserve to get lost or entrapped in his fortress.

            2. Actually, pretty much standard equipment in older English castles – it’s called a ‘trip stair’. The older son of the current Lord Berkeley told us as he guided our group around Berkeley Castle.

      3. Oh [redacted]. These people never say the skit on, either SNL or Living Color, where the Justice League has to adapt to the times and among the new supers is Handi-Man, the first disabled super hero. (He has CP.) Oh lord, it was funny and there is NO way you could get away with that today.

        1. Not at all the same, but I am reminded of a Monty Python skit where almost everyone has some amazing superpower… and their hero? Bicycle Repair Man.

          1. Bicycle Repair Man was cool! 🙂

            OTOH, one of my favorite bits was “The Architect Sketch”, where one of the losing submissions figured that the entry hallway needed whirling knives. Seems he slightly overestimated the distain the clients had for their customers.

            Oh hell, I’m torn between the Spam sketch and the Lumberjack song sketch as favorites.

            1. It’s the way the “first EVER” often is not, in fact, first and often vastly inferior to the actual firsts that drain the humor.

              1. Kinda prophetic on that angle, then– most of the “first EVER” are…well, remember things calling that gal who was put on the Supreme Court the “First African-American Supreme Court Justice”?

            1. Yep, I knew of him before I heard of Daredevil. 😉

              Strange, my earlier post on McNider, Daredevil and Professor X is still in moderation. 😦

              1. Huh, I thought it was because I linked the wiki, but mine went into moderation, too– maybe it’s something about his hero name that triggers the bot.

          1. DC’s Charles McNider (Doctor Mid-Nite) was apparently the first blind superhero but after he was blinded he discovered that he could “see in the dark”. He used a special visor to turn “lighted places dark for him” as well as “blackout bombs”.

            Marvel’s Daredevil was blind but had “special senses” to enable him to function just like a seeing person.

            Professor X was show as wheel-chair bound but his telepathic powers aided him assisting his X-men in the field while he remained in his mansion. Oh, currently Marvel has him walking around normally.

            1. The only other wheelchair bound hero I remember was from the Dracula comics, where Quincy Harker (son? nephew?) of the original from the novel), who was the team lead, had ended up in one as a result of an earlier battle with Dracula.

              Of course, it was seriously pimped for vampire hunting: tracked, capable of roughly 40 mph, equipped with Holy Water sprayer, wooden airgun darts. Drac didn’t like it at all.

              1. There was also Niles Caulder (Chief) of DC’s Doom Patrol.

                He was stuck in a wheelchair but lacked any superpowers (or special gadgets) so generally didn’t accompany his team into combat.

            2. Chief from Doom Patrol was older than Professor X. Marginally. So marginally that it’s clear that X-men were not a Doom Patrol ripoff scheduling would have made it impossible.

              Plus Oracle, but she’s later.

        1. It was terribly rude of the Evil Overlord to not make it easy for the be-wheelchaired heroes to attack him.

          Because apparently that was a option in the game; To put your adventurer in a wheelchair.

      4. Y’know it would be completely different matter, if that were “a joke that got repeated with all the context removed”.

        Because my gaming group makes jokes like that all the time that thus and such dungeon is not OSHA compliant or whatever.

        It would actually be a relief to find out that “This dungeon isn’t wheelchair accessible!” was the players making jokes and it got reported badly (because how else would reporters do?)

      5. I’m guessing that you are single. There are a number of very good uses for being parallel to the floor. Including reading.

        1. Lord Vorkosigan and his Lady wife Ekaterin would concur.
          Once upon a long time ago I was briefly employed as a night watchman. I desired it not as a career. I didn’t think it was possible to doze off while walking around, but nevertheless managed it a time or two, fortunately remaining vertical in the process.

  17. I think you’re being unnecessarily harsh with regards to planers. They’re great at taking a little bit off the edge of a board. (runs)

    1. The Reader notes that the carp supply is getting depleted due to an excess of comments like this. You get a pass today.

    2. It’s a true fact, yeah. Someday I’ll tell you what I did with grandad’s planer. (He was a carpenter) that almost landed me in the hospital.
      Did I misspell it? I follow the way of Tie-Po, you know?

      1. Little typo – well done following the Way.

        The Marxism I keep finding on the right is the bizarre idea that the elaborate plans of the planers are coming through perfectly;

        Alternatively, perhaps
        Plans of the Planets.
        Plans of the explaners
        Plants of the Plantagenets (go, broom!)
        Planks of the planers, so they have something to do.

        I usually see the woodworking tool named ‘plane’, and I’m inclined to prefer it that way. But ‘planer’ is also correct.

  18. I have contended for years that women were perfectly well represented in science fiction, and if people would’ve let the damn fandom BE then it would have shaken itself out without the Sturm und Drang und Puppies.

    If you’re booky and you grow up loving a genre, you’re likely to write it if you write at all. See Lois McMaster Bujold, Robin McKinley, a significant portion of Huns… In some happier timeline, the scolds never got a hold of SFF and the next generation of female genre writers took cheerfully to writing more SFF rather than “If You Were A Clumsy Rhetorical Device, My Love”.

    1. Ah, yes. The people who were so much more fan than thou, that they responded to accusations that they had oh so gradually morphed into a self-serving hostile clique by proving their critics right.

      But, since it’s better to light a candle than to curse the darkness, every once in a while you still get something like “Red Wolf: Exile” by Sabrina Chase, featured in last Sunday’s Weekly Promo. I saw the first installment and was intrigued by the premise. I bought it, and when I finished, I had to get the second one. Then I had to get the ARC because I couldn’t wait a whole six weeks for the finish. And now I have to wait even longer for the next book in the series (Write Faster!!) I’ve become so jaded by run-of-the mill contemporary fantasy/SF that it’s rare anymore that I find something that has delighted me as much.

      1. Tis better to detonate the tac-nuke in the enemy camp than to curse the darkness.

    2. See, while present company may get fish-faced once in a while, it beats being in the enemy camp, and ham-handed all the time.

  19. As a PKD devotee (our kids as well), I think it’s known that he used the I Ching…for a while I was trying to write a sequel using it too…I have also personally used the I Ching, but during the Bush-Obama reign, I kept getting the hexagram which said, essentially, that evil men rule, keep a low profile….Good advice, I think…

  20. Blamers, gamers, pocketless shamers, not part of my day to day get through another way and play up here atop the world.

    Hence why I rather enjoy these postings and conversations.

    That and the tangents such reading leads me toward. Such as duck duck going ‘when were pockets first put on pants’ and finding roughly 500 years ago.

  21. Much of the Marxist garbage that Sarah commented on is the same as “Blame The Witch”.

  22. I was thinking about the woman who “wasted” the precious oil on Jesus. She must have been a cut above middle class to be able to afford to keep 30 pieces of silver long enough to buy ointment. Just saying. So where am I going? The ability to be extravagant matters. If everyone had the same amount (equity) there would be no beauty or joy in the world. And BTW remember the poooor widow who only had a mite to contribute to that big extravagant temple which had more than it needed? She still donated that mite and may have skipped a meal to do so. Because choice matters also.

    1. I keep noting the disciple who said, “Why did she do this, It SHOULD have been sold and the money given to the poor,” was Judas. Not a good role model. Especially since John says Judas said it because he held the group’s purse and treated the money as his own. (Or as John more bluntly put it, he was a thief).
      Seems like our current socialists/Marxists are cut from the same cloth.

  23. Why in the world would we tax the rich into poverty.I would MUCH rather be employed by a rich person than a poor one.

    Down with Robin Hood!!!

      1. Robin Hood stole from the government to give the money taken by that government back to the people it stole it from.

        1. For Shame! Now you’re bring Facts into the discussion. [Very Very Big Crazy Grin]

      1. And the Church. Granted, both were oppressive, but the modern version of Robin Hood IS the tax collector, and the typical modus operandi is to steal from those it is easiest to shake down, give to those who can deliver votes, and take a cut for themselves.

          1. Monty Python (again):

            “He steals from the poor,
            He gives to the rich,
            Stupid —–!”

            “Blimey, this redistribution of wealth thing is complicated.”

              1. “Yoikes, and away!” (Slams into tree)
                “Yoikes, and away!” (Slams unto tree)
                “Yoikes,” (swaying) and away!” (Slams into tree).
                Thank you, Daffy Duck.

    1. Don’t eat the rich, there’s not enough of them, it’s not sustainable!
      Plus you end up surrounded by people with a taste for cannibalism and you’re the richest person left…

  24. I remember, some years back, looking at a “log cabin” built for a lawyer. It had 20′ ceilings and floor to ceiling windows to take in the view. He only used it a few weeks of the year. My first thought was “Ugh, I’d hate dusting that place,” followed by “How dare he waste so much energy heating/cooling that mansion.”

    I caught myself at that point. Why did I think that? Where did it come from? Programming from the environment I happened to be swimming in. It led to a lot of uprooting of stuff. (I still think the log mansion was a waste, but hey, it was his money, more power to him.)

    1. “I know, we’ll tax the wealthy by making it even more expensive to buy new yachts!”

      Result: Unemployed yacht-builders. Booming USED yacht market.

      Gee, who could have predicted this?
      Er, ANYONE with a few functioning synapses…

      1. “We’ll put a Luxury Tax on new vehicles”, this includes cars, trucks, motorcycles, boats, RVs of all types.

        Dries up sales of RV’s of all types. New vehicles harder to say because they haven’t been available.

        But Used? Premium market. Which the Luxury Tax is not imposed on. So bad that the Electric Vehicle Rebates, which is paid for by the vehicle luxury tax, are being suspended because the funds are running out. There has not been a run on Electric Vehicles.

        1. Yeah, and there aren’t any economy cars available in the US anymore. It’s really annoying.

          1. Annnd … The surprise when rental car rates have skyrocketed. What do people think happened when the price of used vehicles skyrocketed to almost, and some vehicles, as much as, new, without the new tax? Think the vehicle rental is sitting on all the money? Not hardly.

    2. He didn’t.

      I know because the Seattle version of him and his buddies threw an abject fit to having a minimum power-and-water charge to upkeep the infrastructure they used the heck out of on those few weeks a year, when they mostly cleaned and worked on their vacation home.

      (Which would be fine, but “somebody” pulled some shady stuff, and suddenly they didn’t have to pay to keep the power and water on, and the grid kept crashing when they’d all show up and overuse the system that worked fine if you didn’t have half of Seattle in the valley.)

  25. I think the “riches are bad” owes a little to Calvin and some of his followers, but in a twisted way. One idea of Vocations was that if you did what the Most High wanted you to do, and you succeeded, it was a possible (perhaps, maybe) sign of being among the Elect. And that work of any kind could be as much of a Vocation as being a minister, priest, monk, or nun. So hard work was good, and had virtue. [The positive side.] HOWEVER, inherited wealth, unearned wealth, seemed to lead to vice and corruption (the Regency, the Restoration, Charles I) and immorality. So “having lots of unearned money can lead to moral disasters” became with Marx “excess money is a moral disaster.”

    1. Same reason that “the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil” became “money is the root of all evil”?

      1. There’s nothing so clear that an application of Marx (or whatever the current intellectual philosophy fad is) can’t muddy it. It probably went from “love of money” to “people with lots of money love money” to “if you don’t have a lot of money you can’t love it” to wrap up at “money is the root of all evil.”

        With a dollop of: Rousseau’s Noble Savage who lived in harmony with everyone and owned no private property. Because owning stuff’s bad, m’kay? So if no one owns private property, everyone will be happier.

        1. ‘So if no one owns private property, everyone will be happier.’

          blows raspberry

          I spent a little while thinking about the 15-minute city idea, plus eradication of private property, and came to the conclusion that I’d probably go through three stages in such an environment. Bored to tears, bored out of my mind, and bored to death.

          -1- Everything’s ugly, because the priorities are conservation of space and survival. Feelings of isolation despite the crowds being claustrophobic. Nothing is mine, not even my home, and there’s nowhere I can go to get away. There’s multiple people living in the same rooms I am. Ergo, tears.

          -2- Depression and anxiety due to the aforementioned state of life. Trying to use make-believe to get away leads to annoyed neighbors knocking on my door and telling me to stop talking to myself. (Conservation of space = thin walls.) Lack of anything beautiful or meaningful in my surroundings slowly wears away at my inhibitions until I start doing really stupid/insane things just to feel something. Survival becomes less of a priority overtime, because I don’t really want to live anymore. I have no reason to.

          -3- I run afoul of the Powers That Be and their police forces, or can’t quite hold on tight enough while climbing buildings, and earn my Darwin Award. Direct suicide isn’t something I would pursue, even under those circumstances, but dying of my own stupidity and lack of regard for my own survival? That I could believe.

          1. Check out the responses to this:

            1. I suspect that ‘green transit’ is more commonly known as walking. Because you can’t depend on the buses.

              Somebody doesn’t know how to spell ‘stack-a-prole tenements’. Electricity is off for 6-8 hours a day ‘when nobody is home anyway’. Water automatically shuts off when you’ve used up your daily ration and the mechanism doesn’t care if you’re in the shower covered with soap. Using less today doesn’t mean you get more tomorrow.

              The stores only sell food that is ‘good for you’ and you can’t buy ‘more than you need’.

              Your ‘free’ internet and cell phone are monitored by everybody from Gurgle and the Fibbies to the communist Chinese. Everything you say and do is scrutinized.
              ‘Progressives’ suppress free speech because they don’t have the means to suppress free thought.


    2. WRT the origin of the notion that “to be rich is to be in peculiar danger of moral wreck.” You’ll recall a saying about a camel going through a needle’s eye. His disciples were startled, but He reassured them that everything was possible with God.

      1. My apologies to our hostess for skating the edge of forbidden topics, if I have erred feel free to remove this That said:

        This comes from the parable/pericope of the Rich Young Man found in Mathew 19:16:30. I’ll quote part of it here (From the NET translation)

        16 Now someone came up to him and said, “Teacher, what good thing must I do to gain eternal life?” 17 He said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? There is only one who is good. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.” 18 “Which ones?” he asked. Jesus replied, “Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, 19 honor your father and mother, and love your neighbor as yourself.” 20 The young man said to him, “I have wholeheartedly obeyed all these laws. What do I still lack?” 21 Jesus said to him, “If you wish to be perfect, go sell your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” 22 But when the young man heard this he went away sorrowful, for he was very rich.

        23 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “I tell you the truth, it will be hard for a rich person to enter the kingdom of heaven! 24 Again I say, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter into the kingdom of God.” 25 The disciples were greatly astonished when they heard this and said, “Then who can be saved?” 26 Jesus looked at them and replied, “This is impossible for mere humans, but for God all things are possible. ”

        Many seem to ignore that last bit and focus on what was told to the rich young man. In fact
        this combined with some syncretism by the early church with Greek philosophical concepts of material being “evil” and celestial/spiritual being “good” leads to the Benedictine and Franciscans vows of poverty for the monks

        To blame Calvin is somewhat unfair, in one of his sermons he states

        When God gives someone more than he needs, he establishes him there as if he was [God’s] own person, to say that “doing good is my special character, for all good things come from me– I make the earth fruitful, I give it the power to produce its fruits”; but in giving me his office God makes me his deputy (lieutenant) as it were; and what is the nature off that honour? So all rich people, when they have the means to do good, are certainly there as God’s deputies (officiers) and carry out what is in their character as such–that is, helping their neighbours to live

        Calvin notes that what we have we have been given by God and that as God would care for His Creation so should we. This is the Golden Rule as referenced by Jesus in MT 19:19 (see above) applied as widely as possible and as implied in Calvin’s bit of sermon.

        In general all of this seems to come from the fact we LOVE to have rules. The young man in the parable probes asking “WHICH rules must I follow”. Jesus replies with the basics of the Jewish faith. The Young man probes further. The traditional interpretation is that Jesus knows what the young man is thinking and knows is his weak point and calls it out.
        Rather than Pharisaical rule following Jesus is pointing out the principles involved to the young man in a rather rabbinical way and the young man (at least at that point) misses the issue. This seems to happen a lot with us mere mortals.

        1. Excellent point about what Calvin really said. Thank you for the citation!

          I should have been clear that I was thinking about “popular Calvinism,” which as with so many things, differs from the original source. There’s “what the theologian said,” “what his first generation followers understood,” and “what later generations took it to mean.” With the occasional, “what later academics and theologians say that the original writer really meant.” 😛

          Kipling’s take: He that hath a Gospel
          For all earth to own —
          Though he etch it on the steel,
          Or carve it on the stone —
          Not to be misdoubted
          Through the after-days —
          It is His Disciple
          Shall read it many ways.

          1. I hold my stubbornness to be related to my training in my youth to always return to the text (even Congregationalist/baptists treat Sola Scriptura quite seriously). It is why I find all the liberal interpretations of the constitution so offensive.

            1. Shoot, that’s why I have considerable problems with changing the words to hymns, and other songs, especially without attribution.

              Also, God is not a 21st century American.

              1. weefreeirish you have clearly not met any members of the ABC (American Baptist Conference). In many cases Unitarian Universalists follow the Nicene Creed more closely than many weasel mouthed ABC pastors. Sadly this is true of much of the traditional denominational gatherings. It is Pournelle’s Iron Law working over 50-100 years.

                1. Two semesters in seminary was very educational. I learned that I probably would not be accepted into ministerial fellowship by any faith.

        2. Mark 10:17-27 recounts what appears to be the same incident, but in that version, in response to his disciples’ astonishment, Jesus clarifies that it is hard for those who trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God.

          1. And indeed it is in ALL the synoptic gospels (Matthew, Mark and Luke) Luke has it at 18:18-27. I just happened to find Mathew first…

  26. On the contrary, they do say “No one is to Blame”, especially every time one of their hair brained schemes blows up in their faces. (Defund the police, Etc, Etc, etc.) What they mean is we aren’t to blame because we meant well or think all the correct things. They are living proof the peter principle is real.

    1. Cynic on: The reason the perfectly reasonabe measures than naysayers deride as harebrained fail is because the naysaysers made them fail. /cynic off.
      No one likes to admit that they were wrong and their opponents were right. But the difference between wise men and fools is that the wise do it anyway.

  27. Every time you come across one of these, ask them in logical steps how this can be the other group’s fault, and what evidence they have.

    Sometimes, you’ll be flat out told that if is their just due to be brought up to the same level of ease as they identify others as having.

    So, someone in a wheelchair must be carried up stairs, without having to schedule or anything.

    The equivalent cost of the folks have to do the carrying, of course, doesn’t come into account.

    If they didn’t want to have to carry other people up stairs, they shouldn’t have been in a place where there were stairs and someone who couldn’t use them.

    1. at which point you tell them to grow up. Yes, I know screaming.
      it’s okay. I raised toddlers, one of which had a scream like a train whistle.
      I can point and laugh

      1. I usually don’t say anything, honestly, but I’ve been told I inherited my mother’s ability to Not Say Anything very, very loudly.

        Either that or I have, like, summon Jiminy Cricket as a reflex-casting spell and they start feeling guilty.

        1. You have a small invisible army of Jiminy Crickets that follow you around and you don’t know it. They come out when you are Not Saying Anything Very Loudly, and assail those who stand against you. Then they go back to following you around to see who you inadvertently sic them on next.

  28. One of the reasons that Marxists and left-leaning politicians hate wealth is because wealth gives you freedom. People that can take care of themselves, live independently and don’t need the government to carry them along.

    The fuel that grows government and underlies left leaning ideologies is the perpetual production of victims. Power structures depend on having a steady source of manufactured oppressors.

    Blame is the fuel for the fire and anything that gets in their way is kindling.

  29. “Which goes to prove that an ancient Chinese oracle is saner than the Marxism that’s been inculcated into most of the minds in the West since the turn of the twentieth century, just about.”

    Gee, that’s setting the bar kinda low, ain’t it. :-]

    1. Heck picking up a deck of major arcana tarot cards, running about a church widdershins three times and then tossing them in the air and reading the ones that end up face up is a better means of divination than Marxist gobbeldey gook. At least Tarot cards are right once and a while through sheer chance.

      1. Heck, you’d probably do better with 2D20 and a random events list from a D&D game master’s handbook than with Marx.

        1. Hmmmm

          (Consults dice)

          One and one

          Your five year plan lasted only three, missed all objectives, and killed 100 million people.

          And you were overthrown by the Comittee, as not trying hard enough.

          1. Not to be pedantic (heck I’m me, pedantism is my middle name, although quite a common one among Rigellians actually ) but wouldn’t 0 and 1 on 2d20 (i.e. percentile dice) be the worst? Although 0 and 0 is viewed as 100 somewhat incongruously. Apparently Mssrs Gygax and Arenson were FORTRAN not C types.

  30. On a totally different issue I saw this on Instapundit this morning

    about how every 50 years or so the US just seems to wander into insanity .
    If you see me in the corner petting Fluffy and nursing a nice snifter of napoleon brandy (or perhaps sucking my thumb) and mumbling “Not the year of the jackpot, not the year of the jackpot, PLEASE great Author NOT the year of the Jackpot” you’ll know why…

  31. “Only a mind exquisitely indoctrinated in Marxism can think that way.”

    For me, at their core, envy and resentment are the animating emotions for diehard Leftists. Tribal societies in 3rd/4th world places energize on lust for power and control over wealth and persons. Modern-day Leftists are no different!

    1. Where are they going to put the families they’re booting out? Why not just put the illegal aliens there instead?
      The government can mandate stupidity, but they can’t make it not be stupid.

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