Monthly Archives: October 2013

Pre-Halloween Festival

Wisdom from my Hello Kitty of Blogging account:

I’d like to take this opportunity to propose a new holiday, a pre-Halloween holiday. I’m proposing a week-to-ten-day-long festival called “Get all the people who hate fun out of the way (they don’t want to be involved anyhow).” Or something.

Frumpy housewives who want to start tongue-clucking because the womens’ costumes are too slutty. Religious zealots fretting away because of the “occult” overtones. Liberals who want the kids collecting the most candy, to share it with the other kids who didn’t bother to go out. March them all into a great big, I dunno…big ol’ pumpkin or something. Seal it shut.

Let’s get something straight: Whatever else might have happened in its history, in modern times Halloween is the first big fun thing to happen after school opens up. It teaches — reminds — kids to enjoy the passage of time. This is important. It’s true they get plenty enough fun & relaxation during summer…maybe too much…if you want to start bitching about that, I’m in your corner. Halloween tells them, you get a good solid block of work done FIRST, then we start stretching into the holidays, and you start to think about blending the fun with the work. This is something you need to know how to do when you grow up. And let’s face it, the grown-ups need a chance to bust loose too.

Yes, of course you can disagree. Just get your ass in that pumpkin, and see you in ten.

I’m inspired by, among many other things, this

In the latest example of small-mindedness plaguing our educational system, schools around the country are attempting to ban costumes and candy on what is surely one of most kids’ favorite days of the year. The excuses range from vague concerns about “safety” to specific worries about food allergies to—get this—fears of breaching the wall of separation between church and state.

Fun HalloweenBut whatever the motivation, the end result is the same as what Charlie Brown used to get every time he went trick-or-treating: a big old rock in the candy bag. What sort of lesson are we teaching our kids when we ban even a tiny, sugar-coated break in their daily grind? Mostly that we are a society that is so scared of its own shadow that we can’t even enjoy ourselves anymore. We live in fear of what might be called the killjoy’s veto, where any complaint is enough to destroy even the least objectionable fun. [emphasis mine]

I think what bugs me more than anything else is that this is one of the last vestiges of the “neighborhood.” I don’t mean that in the physical sense. We have all sorts of neighborhoods. Trouble is, it’s becoming rare that anybody knows the first names or the last names of whoever’s living a hundred fifty feet away…or five hundred feet away…I’m concerned that they don’t have any reason to. I’m concerned that they have all sorts of reasons not to.

Everyone loves to brag about respecting “diversity.” Here’s the trick: Without intimacy, diversity’s easy. When it’s just that funny family down at the end of the block who moved in last year, of course you don’t care about their country of origin or whether they speak English. Heck, are they still there? Oh, so it might be credibly pondered that you’re all burning the same oxygen with your lungs. How courageous of you.

The more years I see come and go, the more amazed I am that the people who insist we “all come together to get things done” and that we give up our profits, liberties and personal ambitions “for the greater good,” are the ones plagued with the lion’s share of human-interaction handicaps. They say it is an impermissible manifestation of religiosity they can’t handle, but the truth is they can’t handle any dialogue or social configuration outside of their very narrow confine of the tolerable: “I tell people what to do and then they go do it.” That, or “I tell people to knock something off, and they must stop even if they’d rather not.” Besides those two things, anything else is out of their league.

Test it sometime. Do something truly sociable that puts everyone on equal footing. These people will be missing from it. The same people will always be missing, every time.

The truth of the matter is, that having real fun takes balls. No, I shouldn’t say that; a lot of women know how to have fun. Let’s say it takes a thick hide. One of the tragedies of our modern society is, the people with thin skins get to tell the people with thick skins how they’re supposed to live, work, learn and recreate. We’re not all getting an equal say here, and because of the dissipation of natural threats against our species, or society has turned into an Idiocracy. It’s the shrikes who are calling the shots now. The bossies. The knuckle-whackers. See, the eerie-prophecy movie didn’t quite call that one: We’ve started to crave taboos, invent new taboos, meaningless taboos that have no history and serve no purpose, just so we can shush each other. Like the article said: “Any complaint is enough to destroy even the least objectionable fun.”

In fact, I’ll bet a pillowcase of Milk Duds that if we could go back in time and review the true history of Halloween — not what’s been preserved for us, but the real thing, right down to the most arcane details — we’d find out it had something to do with fixing exactly that sort of problem: The thin-skinned people running everything. Perhaps not at the earliest origins, but somewhere along the way. Something to do with throwing off questionable taboos, celebrating the completion of a whole lot of work, or cutting loose with one last festivity before hunkering down for a suffocating and tough winter. Perhaps, making a point of knocking back a few with friends, relatives and neighbors, being unsure of whether they’d make it to the spring thaw? Kind of a “see you on the flip-side”? Makes sense to me…

So off with you, shrikes, strutting martinets, zealots, killjoys, seacows and scolds. Into the big pumpkin you go. I exorcise you like the evil spirits you are. See you on November 1.

Cross-posted at House of Eratosthenes and Right Wing News.

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The Fail

As I get older, I notice my observations about things — on some level — become, paradoxically, simpler. Perhaps this comes from OO design methodology. You remember the classic XYZ Corporation example: Salespeople have regions and make flat salaries, commissions and bonuses; but before they are instantiated as salespeople objects, they are employees, and as such have employee numbers and seniority dates. At the next level up, they are U.S. citizens and have Social Security numbers, then they are human beings with heights, weights, genders and dates-of-birth. The point is that one learns to look for the common attributes. It is a skill as well as a habit, and one is never finished fully developing it.

Now, how long have I been studying modern liberalism. It was impossible to ignore which side was right & which side was wrong during the Ford/Carter/Reagan years. My interest in the whole thing waned sharply during Reagan’s second term, along with everybody else’s I think, and I was entirely apolitical by the time Bush and Quayle were sworn in. Bill Clinton fixed that for good. First time I saw a photo-op of him in a school classroom babbling away about a whole lot of nothing, realizing this was our next President of the United States, I formed more-or-less the realizations I have right now: We are in the middle of a culture-clash about superficiality. The central issue involves what you might say is the proper response to snake-oil salesmen selling bad products, who sound good. And have already managed to convince “everybody” else. With scare-quotes around “everybody,” since what is meant by that is the illusion of everybody. That faction which has managed to erect a veneer of unanimity. Managed to dominate the conversation.

After that, the forces in my personal evolution have consisted of merely more nudging, mostly gentle but occasionally jarring, in the common direction. I found out the woman I divorced before Clinton came along, was a passionate democrat, and realized how much money I’d have saved if I simply took the time to figure this out sooner. Then came the shutdown and the Lewinsky scandal, both of which proved that there is an aristocracy of charisma in our superficial society, filled with lovable bumpkins who can get away with pretty much everything, things that would destroy you or me in an instant, and there are teeming throngs of adoring airhead fans who think that’s just wonderful. Then came the Florida election debacle, during which our liberals became much nastier, and the 9/11 attacks. Throughout all of this I have spent much more energy studying modern liberalism for one reason: It’s been proven to me that I have to.

Liberals are just like a roaring house fire. I have other things I have to get done that don’t have anything to do with studying liberals. But, at the same time, if I attend to those things and ignore the liberals, they’ll flare up and fucking consume whatever I manage to put together anyway. And, I’m picking up the vibe, generally, that I’m not alone in this. Those of us who build things, or want to build things, are conflicted. There is only so much time in the day, and we can spend a lot of it ignoring the liberals — but if we never pay attention to the damage they’re doing, they’ll destroy all our stuff and everything we manage to get done will be for nothing.

Which brings me to a realization already familiar to me. Futility. Perhaps it is not merely an effect of modern liberalism; perhaps it is the goal.

I am entertaining the notion, as I have before, that it is all about failure.

Modern liberals live on a wholly separate planet, strewn across its entire surface with opposite-thinking. They think they’ve managed to salvage our nation’s credit-worthiness, by selling the idea that debt doesn’t & shouldn’t matter. For those who have trouble buying into that, our Vice President once famously said we have to spend more money to keep from going bankrupt. If our country has a problem with ignorance because it doesn’t do enough listening, the people to whom our friends the liberals think we should do more listening are the…children. There it is again, see: The inexperienced are to be seen as experienced, and vice-versa. The ranks of the leftists seem to be disproportionately swollen with the presence of asshole-makers, those who treat nice people as if they were mean people, and mean people as if they were nice. The climate-change scam has now managed to achieve ninety-five percent certainty even though the predictions are wrong. ObamaCare is evidently their idea of great legislation. Hillary Clinton is evidently their idea of a smart woman. They’re constantly braying that the Tea Party is by its very nature stupid, intransigent, unreasonable and kooky, although the core message of the TP is really nothing more than “maybe we should try not to rack up so much debt.” Sarah Palin still scares them and they still hate her, even though she resigned and went home just like they wanted her to do, and she isn’t forcing anyone to buy strange creepy new insurance policies from a crappy website that’s never up. They think the national parks should be locked down. They think our country’s borders should not be. When President Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid went on record to say they would refuse to negotiate during the shutdown, they strangely concluded that the Republicans in Congress must therefore be “holding the country hostage,” and should bear all the responsibility for the shutdown. They’re constantly in a state of fret that some sort of life-staple they demand from the government is going to be disrupted in its supply, and this apprehension of theirs seems genuine…their solution to this is always to have the government manage more things. They sanction discriminatory practices, in fact, insist on them at every turn, and they call this “equality.” Planet Liberal seems to be going through a “global warming” of its very own, of sorts, from which there is no terrestrial escape — of opposite-ness. Pole to pole, all around the equator, continent to continent and sea to sea. Everything is perceived by the vocal intelligentsia as the exact opposite of what it truly is.

To all of this we can add what may be the highest base abstract superclass: Victory is to be treated as failure, and failure is to be treated as victory. President Obama sucks, they admit, but they support Him anyway. If someone comes along to counsel or nudge toward success, they react with rage; the simpler the counseling, the hotter the rage. They seem to need, and want, and appreciate having, thin waists and fat wallets just like the rest of us. It is the dispensation of true wisdom that might lead to such desirable outcomes that really cheeses ’em off.

Think of: Two men come across undiscovered land, stake their claims, and get busy building their houses before the cold winter rolls in. One man succeeds at this and the other fails. Normal people like you and me might say, the man who succeeded at exactly the same problem in exactly the same conditions, using the same tools, with the same supplies at his disposal, might have some good information to share with the man who failed. Not so to our friends the liberals, from the opposite-ravaged planet. To them, “true” wisdom comes from the sad sack who had to move in to his friend’s abode for the winter. What really matters is “what it’s like” for him; there may be some information in the universe somewhere that’s still relevant, but this is the first-and-foremost, most important thing. And among those who need to pull up a chair and listen endlessly, the one guy who most urgently needs to receive the information about how it feels to be a loser, is the guy who managed to get it done. He has the most to learn. He should listen, listen and listen some more to the endless caterwauling about the despair, the cold, the rain, the embarrassment, the dependency, how awful it all is…and then he should pay higher taxes for his friend who has to be on the dole now. Maybe they can dismantle that fancy house, then one guy can live under the roof and the other one can have the walls.

And this is true with every domestic policy they have to offer. Haven’t you noticed? Those who have managed to produce the things we all want, need to shut up, pay their taxes, and stand by waiting to be told what to do…by some “regulators” who are thought to be supremely wise in some way. Although, common sense says that if the regulators knew anything about producing, they wouldn’t be regulating, they’d be producing.

The point is: In their world, losers always have something to teach the winners. Winners have nothing to offer by way of useful knowledge, to the losers. No non-achievers can ever be told anything they might need to learn, to become achievers. That, to them, is hateful. It’s disrespectful. It makes the losers feel like losers.

It never seems to fall within their tight perimeter of thinking, that if anyone really thought of the losers as cradle-to-grave losers, the last thing that person would do would be disrupting his business — which obviously works — to stop and offer the losers some guidance. That would only make sense if the successful person saw some potential there. So by seeing the losers as losers-today-winners-tomorrow-maybe, those who give advice to the losers show the losers vastly more respect than our friends the liberals, who seem to be oblivious to the very concept of improved results by way of expansion of knowledge, as well as to the concept of time.

The disagreement here is about whether losers have anything to learn. From that, spring all the other disagreements, it seems. Which are much more contentious than they need to be, since the modern liberals are so far off-base that they insist it is the losers who should be doing all the teaching, and the winners should be doing the learning. From the losers.

It’s odd that when it comes to partisan wrangling in Washington, they don’t follow through. When democrats negotiate with Republicans, suddenly the modern left understands victory just fine. The same goes for elections. As incumbents and as challengers, liberals act during elections exactly the way conservatives act with things that are outside politics. They play to win. It’s only in the policies to which they want to commit the rest of us, that they treat defeat like victory and victory like defeat.

Cross-posted at House of Eratosthenes and Right Wing News.

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Maria Kang

Got a big controversy over the above photograph. She’s a local lady here, who’s created a national uproar. I guess it’s the “What’s Your Excuse?” line rubbing some people the wrong way.

Jack Armstrong of Armstrong & Getty was complaining that her occupation has been toned down, failing to find mention in articles like this one. She’s some kind of fitness trainer or something. So I guess the rebuttal would be…”my excuse is that I’m not a fitness trainer”? And it would seem I can throw stones like everyone else at hapless Maria, since I’m not a fitness trainer either and I seem to have packed on thirty pounds plus over the last couple years. So pass the rock and let’s get in line, right?

Sorry, no dice. This is not about fat.

There are two kinds of people in the world. Some say, “if one guy did it anywhere, that means anybody else who wants to, can do it everywhere.” The other kind say, “if one guy somewhere can’t do it, then nobody else should be able to do it either.” Perhaps the Facebook ladies getting all pissed off at Ms. Kang have hit a compromise: “I’m willing to do what it takes to get the weight off, so long as nobody, anywhere, does or says anything to make me feel bad.” It’s that last set that is the problem here, not Maria Kang. You have to choose your battles. The fact is, a lot of people who have weight problems simply want to have everything as good as they can possibly have it, every waking minute of every day. Why get a Quarter Pounder, when there’s a Double Quarter Pounder right next to it for only another dollar? “She said something that rubbed me the wrong way, now I must start a revolution” — that’s just an extension of that. Feel feel feel, every situation that comes along, it’s all about how it makes you feel. That’s how people put on weight.

You know, there are certain truisms about criticism, whether the criticism is personalized or not: Criticism is almost never one hundred percent on-the-money. It’s always wrong somewhere. But it very seldom entirely misses the mark, either. You have to, as the adage goes, “take what you like and leave the rest.” In the case of criticism, nobody likes any of it, so what you need to do is take what will help you and improve your situation…and leave the rest. Did Maria Kang’s flippant comment entirely miss the mark? With everyone?

Let’s answer that question with another question: Are the complaining-people not answering her question rather directly? “My excuse is that you’re making me feel bad about myself.” And in so doing, are they not proving the question has more than a little merit? “What’s your excuse” means, boiled down to its essentials, “how little does it take to make you abandon your goal of a better body?” And the answer is “some stranger on Facebook posting pictures I don’t like.” Pretty low bar. So there’s opportunity for improvement there.

The real tragedy is this: That is precisely the problem Ms. Kang was trying to solve, if I’m reading her message right. And I think I am. She took the time and trouble to reach the emotionally sensitive types, the kind of people who aren’t inclined to say “no pain no gain,” just-do-it, the kind who have not yet pushed past that first milestone. The must-feel-good-all-the-time types. And, those are exactly the ones who are biting her head off over it.

We can have a legitimate argument over whether or not she deployed sufficient tact. But she was trying to help. And the fact is, these people can’t admit that they’re the ones who have the problem. They’re showing the real reason why they don’t look as good as Maria Kang, from the neck down, and nothing is going to change there until something changes between the ears. That makes the whole thing personal, and a bit nasty. Maria Kang didn’t make it that way and neither did I.

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“A New Variety of Privilege”

They know, Mr. Taranto, they know.

[Shanta] Driver’s position seems instead to be based on the contemporary leftist theory that groups certified as “oppressed” deserve special treatment at the expense of the “privileged.” Such a view, however, collapses in its own illogic. A system that gives special treatment to members of an “oppressed” group is simply a new variety of privilege.

Yes, The Left is supposed to be about “equality.” Yet, with every single issue that comes along, there is always one class of people The Left wants to win all the time, and another class of people they want to be beaten all of the time. And, of course, they’re full of complaints whenever they don’t win. All of the time.

They’re not about equality and they never have been. Where did we ever get such an idea? They said so?

Cross-posted at House of Eratosthenes and Right Wing News.

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Why it Went the Way it Did

Mkay, wish I was wrong about this thing, but in the end I was right.

US may avert default as Boehner blinks

US House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner told Republican lawmakers yesterday he will give President Barack Obama a proposal extending the government’s ability to borrow money through Nov 22 – but only if he agrees to negotiate over ending a partial government shutdown and a longer-term increase in the debt ceiling.

Though the Republican proposal could avert an unprecedented federal default that the Obama administration has warned could occur as early as Oct 17, it would not necessarily bring a quick end to the separate 10-day partial federal shutdown. Mr Obama has insisted that Congress reopen the government without condition.

And here is what I said:

I think the democrats are really nervous right now. They have a lot of spinning to do. They’re pretty good at it, they usually win, and my money is still on them winning this time. They probably don’t have too much to fear.

When there is a shutdown, Republicans pay a higher day-by-day political cost for it than democrats. It was true in 1995, it’s true now, it’s always been true. It doesn’t make any sense, since the Republican message is — at least it’s supposed to be — that we need to pull out of this cul de sac of centralized planning and government-administered everything. And in a rational universe, a “shutdown” would be seen as concrete evidence of exactly that, that this configuration isn’t good for us or for our country, and isn’t sustainable.

Complex and ProfoundBut there are a lot of things anchoring us in this irrational, silly universe. The prevailing viewpoint, both within the Republican party and outside of it, is that Republicans are loathed and cannot generate any sympathy or camaraderie with anyone who isn’t already a loyal Republican, and it’s the fault of those Tea Party types. They need to reject the extreme ideas of those zealots with identifiable ideas, and embrace the “mainstream”; lose the vibrant hues and paint with more pastel. I would say, ordinarily, that the thing they should do is neither accept or reject that theory, but instead put it to a test. Ordinarily. The thing about that, though, is that this has already been tested for the last thirty years or so, through our presidential elections. These “reach-across-the-aisle-and-compromise” types of Republican candidates, lose. Every. Single. Time. Meanwhile, you go back a hundred years give-or-take, and you see it’s rather exceptional for Republicans to lose. So there is a problem for this prevailing viewpoint, and as is usually the case, the problem is reality. The theory doesn’t test well.

The tests say, for Republicans to win, they have to do what political candidates from all parties have to do. They have to do what you and I have to do when we go to job interviews. Answer the question: Why you, and not him?

Well, when you lose, the thing to do is learn. Victory always comes to those who are willing to learn, you know. It may take awhile, but the thing about victory is it’s very often the culmination of lots of past defeats, coupled with learning. So, the Republicans could take the tack of “the public has spoken, now let’s all act like democrats,” but what’s the point? That only makes sense if you’re a politician. It’s like, due to the whim of majority rule, quit bailing water out of the boat, drop the bucket, grab an ax, and help make some new holes in it. Why would you do that? You want to be popular, or do you want to fix a problem?

Submitted for someone with real influence to peruse at their leisure; things the Republicans could address, first, if they wanted to fix the problem. Some of these have been broken for quite some time. But if they aren’t fixed before the next shutdown, I’m going to bet my money on the same outcome and I’m probably going to win that one too.

1. The media “watchdog” is a lap dog. There isn’t a lot that can be done about this, at least, not by Republicans. But, it still might be helpful to examine the reasons why. The media has a tendency to be staffed by progressives in the first place, since it’s appealing to the youthful to say “I’m going to become a journalist and change the world for the better.” That means activist journalism, left-wing by its very nature. Thinking on it a little bit harder and deeper, I think it’s pretty clear to everyone what responsible, unbiased reporting really is — and that’s boring. Nobody wants to be that when they grow up. Nobody wants to deliver the facts to the viewers & readers, so that the viewers and readers can make up their own minds. People like to talk about that a lot, but there aren’t that many who are really delivering on it. And then, you have to think about what news, as a commodity, is actually worth. The media has a vested material interest in lefty governance, because when unemployment is high, crime is rampant and resource allocation planning is centralized, news becomes much more important. Think about what a newspaper costs in Chicago or New York City. What’s the local paper cost in Mayberry, USA, or anyplace out in the “breadbasket” where addresses contain words like “township” and “section”; there is a reason for that. People want whatever they’re selling, to be precious. News people want news to be precious. So they want lefties to be running things. It’s just natural.

2. Feelings that glorify style over substance, and immediate gratification, carry the greatest currency right now. The expressed thoughts that are attached to these feelings, resonate most surely and most powerfully. Unlike #1 above, this is not a timeless/endless thing, although it might still be outside of the control of anybody who gives a rip. The most likely situation here is that there is something we can do, but the thing to do is wait awhile. It’s a cyclical thing, almost a seasonal thing. The national mood since about 2005 or 2006 can best be expressed as something like, “What’s this ‘debt’ thing, I just want my num nums.” I give that late date because that’s about the time the national elections started going that way, but anyone who was paying attention will immediately realize the elections were just the ignition point of a combustion process that had been building for a long time. There is a certain fascination with Barack Obama giving speeches as a panacea for every little problem that comes along, and it’s having an effect now that it would not have had in the decades previous. No, it’s not all because of racism. Bill Clinton is a white guy, he had this going for him too. It was & is generational. It isn’t the same thing as Kennedy beating Nixon in the television-age because he was more handsome. This is something new. We care about packaging more than we care about substance. Responsible thinking, grown-up thinking, cause-and-effect thinking, delayed gratification; these things resonate in certain communities, but they’ve lost their cachet that they used to have as “sea to shining sea” values. They’re being dampened in ways they used to not be dampened, in ways the “I want it now” thoughts are not being dampened. Think about those democrat accusations against the Republicans in Congress “holding the government hostage”; to those of us who actually think about debt and what it means, who pay a little bit more on the credit card when the balance is higher than we’d like it to be, it was evident how silly and backward that was. Much like a bully calling a non-bully a bully. But it resonated. My point is, that resonance of this backward-accusation was not merely a symptom, it was the problem itself. People are thinking of the credit card — our eyebrows-deep in debt government — the way our kids & wives think about credit cards right before we get really, really worried; as “free” cash. So, you see, the Republicans never really had a chance at this thing. Maybe now the era is coming to an end. Hope so. We’ll see.

3. The democrats work much harder at getting their message out. Credit where it is due. They put a great deal of priority on whether they always get the last word. See, those of us who have to build things that actually work, have this built-in reluctance against making this Priority One. We keep thinking…wait a minute, if you always have to have the last word to make your idea look workable, that’s a sure sign that the idea isn’t workable! Our friends the liberals are not similarly troubled. They seem to understand that they’re dead in the water if they ever fail to have the last word. And where this would cause you or me a whole lot of self-doubt, to them it just raises the adrenaline level. I subscribe to conservative as well as to liberal organizations inclined to send out e-mails about the budget stalemate, to get in their version of what’s going on and what to make of it. Throughout this little tempest, the ratio has not been even close. It’s like fifty, sixty to one. Several times a day I get something from OFA, Media Matters, The New Republic, et al telling me what I’m supposed to think. Where’s the conservative counterpart? Maybe once a week something will trickle in. The tone will be almost apologetic, like junk mail put together by someone who hates junk mail as much as I do. It almost offers to throw itself away for me. To that, you have to add the consideration that when the democrats ask for some trifling amount from each person, like three bucks — and get it from lots and lots of people — that sends a very powerful message. As a politician or a pollster or a pundit, you have to treat that like the three-dollar-donor knew what the progressive movement is really all about, even if there are a lot of signs that this might not be the case. What to do? This is probably the easiest one to fix. When you suck at something, stop sucking. When your leadership sucks at something, replace them.

4. People don’t identify the GOP with the abrogation of an undesirable status quo. Practically no one thinks this country is on the “right track.” Furthermore, from talking to the people who think we’re heading in the wrong direction, the feeling is strong. The anger is palpable. Even among the politically uninvolved, it’s still often the first thing on their minds when they wake up in the morning, and the last thought they have before drifting off at night. Clearly, there is a heady geyser of energy erupting here that the Republicans are failing to capture. We’re in Barack Obama’s America, but when something is wrong with it, somehow Barack Obama achieves much better results in His effort to portray Himself as the Washington-outsider riding in on a white horse to fix it all, than His opposition does. These are, aggravatingly, problems directly linked to His own policies. This is immediately evident to anyone who’s been paying attention. But the people paying attention are not the ones responding to the polls. This one, like #3, is easily fixed. Just ratchet down this rhetoric about “coming together” and “common goals” and “reaching agreement at the table” and so forth. Stop pretending Republicans and democrats want the same things. It isn’t true. And when it’s repeated ad infinitum, the way people hear it is yeah, Republicans and democrats working together to screw me over. Can’t blame them for that, can you. They’re taking something that doesn’t have any truth in it, and trying to make it true; there is some truth in this interpretation. We have a 17 trillion dollar public debt now, the legacy of Republicans and democrats “coming together to find ways of doing things together” and so forth. Just because you’re going forward doesn’t mean you’re heading to a good place.

There is a bright spot to all this. The #2 problem, with the shallow thinking, it is probably the common-cause of the other three problems. I’m very sure this one can be waited out. There’s nothing else that can be done about it. But the waiting will probably work, since it always has. People are always about as superficial as they figure they can afford to be, and what’s happening right now is the country is learning it can’t be that superficial. It will have to do some growing-up, like it did in 1968 and 1980.

It’s the Stein Rule. Whatever can’t go on forever, won’t.

Cross-posted at House of Eratosthenes and Right Wing News.

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Shutnado

There’s a meme out there I’m lovin’.   “Shutnado”.

A couple of months ago, the SciFi channel put out a wonderfully cheesey, hyper-hyped myparkbit of “disaster” theater that was so ungodly unbelievable that it was actually entertainingly hilarious to watch.

Today, our Community Organizer In Chief has been a catalyst in hyper-radicalizing the Democratic party with a blanket application of Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals.

What you saw during the sequester, you’re seeing turned up to eleven.   Barricading national monuments that are so low maintenance …. they’re pretty much things you walk by and look at … to threatening to arrest chaplains who even voluntarily minister on bases.  Petulant.  Spiteful.  “We’re in control.”  “You do what we let you do and nothing more.”

We The People pay people to tweet for Michelle Obama.  Really?

Things are being exposed that … frankly need to be exposed and … thought about.

The administration is trying to inflict pain on We the People so that we will demand they turn all these things back on, and thus pressure our representatives to … cave  That’s the plan.  It’s all layed out in Rules for Radicals. (update: 10/7/2013 – no, this is really what they’re doing.  And they’re saying as much. “We’ve been told to make life as difficult for people as we can,” an unnamed park ranger told the Washington Times. “It’s disgusting.”)

This is #Shutnado.

This is cheesey political disaster theater.

The first day, Vets pushed the barricades aside.  Today they’ve wired them together and put guards up.  Guards.  To keep people who came to pay respect to their fallen brothers by looking at a monument that is not dangerous, does not require any day to day maintenance – costs nothing for people to look at. But the same government branch that is trying to highlight that it doesn’t have the money to pay the people who, day to day, need to do nothing but maybe give direction and pick up trash — oddly does have the money to put up barricades and pay guards to keep people out.  For.  What?????

And it’s been offered the money by the GOP controlled House … which ultimately has the Constitutional authority to fund … to keep those monuments and park staffed, but that offer has been rejected to protect the biggest government power grab in the history of this country, the ACA … under which my daughter-in-law and grandson’s health insurance is going up 30 to 40%.  (These are not wealthy people with Cadillac plans, either)

This is NOT America.

This should backfire on them.  Big time.

What might help is for a few 90 year old WWII Vets to engage in a little civil disobedience .. and get arrested.

Oh yes.  The Administration fears this.

And if it doesn’t, it’s reached the point of dangerous, arogant cockiness.

#Shutnado.  Tweet it. Comment it.  Always with some example of the ridiculous political theater that is …. #Shutnado.

 

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