But SPILLZZZZ!!!!

I have a very dear friend who has some native ancestry and Indian Nation issues are very important to her.

Thus I’m in an awkward, bad position between her friendship and the DAPL hysteria.

I’m not upset with her.  I’m upset with the people who have fed the hysteria for their own political and economic purposes.  There are those who don’t want us to use oil, period, because Man Bear Pig (who ironically are now posting about how low gas prices are because Obama … who wanted them to go up… I’m so confused)  — and those with economic interests in the status quo … transporting more oil over their railways or in trucks over our highways (burning fossil fuels whose exhaust feeds Man Bear Pig — again, these people don’t appear to have a need to be consistent.)

I ran across a post this morning where she asked

“So where were your safety measures for THIS pipeline spill?” linking an article about a spill in Montana in the Yellowstone River a few years ago by an Exxon pipeline.

Naturally curious me, I go read about it.  And this is what I found.

That pipeline (Silvertip) was placed 70 years ago and runs 5-12 feet deep under the river (incidentally, *now* it runs 40 feet beneath the river). 5-12 feet of sediment can easily be scoured out by erosion especially during floods. What they think happened in Montana was boulders moving along the bottom during recent flooding ripped an exposed section of the pipeline open, right there at the river bottom during flooding. No pipeline should be that close to the surface under a waterway — especially a river.

Pipelines in the past have been  cavalierly placed much too close to the surface. The proposed DAPL pipeline run would pass 95 to 115 feet deep under the lake.  So the answer is, safety measures weren’t in place for that pipeline. They didn’t exist when the pipeline was built. In the case of the one that recently ruptured, “under” was closer to “running right along the bottom of”. This was bad, and there are probably a lot more of these that need to be addressed with modern equipment and higher standards for how deep they go when they pass underneath waterways. Along with thicker metal and perhaps double-walls.

I would be more concerned with having companies like Exxon replace old sections of the hundreds of pipelines that currently run under bodies of water all over the country with the same kind of design developed for DAPL. I’m far more worried about contamination from those than I am about this DAPL run.

I do consider myself an environmentalist.  Not one of these hyper, every bug must be protected at all costs environmentalists.  But I, like most people, want clean air and water and unspoiled places to go to get away from life in the city and experience the wild country.  I’m kind of big on that, really.

So I’m serious about that addressing old pipelines bit.  Not only do we not want to waste crude oil, but no, I really don’t want it in the water and contaminating the rivers’ edges.

Alternative Facts

I gotta admit, that one did bug me.  What the hell do you mean, “Alternative Facts”???

I thought a clarification was in order, especially since it was jumped on so quickly.  And hey, you know our side would have jumped on it, too.  It was just too juicy.  She set Chuck Todd up for a spike.  Oh, and he friggin’ buried that ball.

If they really were going that route, yeah, it sounded a bit Orwellian.  But I think I’ve got it sorted out now.

And in their defense, no clarification would ever have been acceptable anyway.  Stop digging, right?

But now that I’ve gone and tracked down what was said and in what contexts regarding crowd size, audience size, and the use of the term “Alternative Facts” … this is what it looks like to me.
 
1) At first, Trump claimed there were 1.5 million people. Somebody in his camp probably told him this. This was a faulty estimate based on how many people different sections of the mall holds.  From the angle most people on stage see it from, it would have appeared that the mall was full. They didn’t have the advantage of the higher angle from the cameras on the more famous photos that were produced later.
 
2) The photo at 12:01pm clearly shows that the mall was not, in fact, full, that there was quite a bit of sparsely populated, even almost empty space.
 
3) Spicer revised the assertion (without retracting the claim about attenedees) to “I have a right to say if you add up the network streaming numbers, Facebook, YouTube, all of the various live streaming that we have information on so far, I don’t think there’s any question it was the largest watched inauguration, ever” — which while it isn’t indisputable, even liberal outlets admit that this may very well be true.
 
4) Kellyanne Conway, when talking about the situation used a term which she will never live down in her awkwardly worded response. “What — You’re saying it’s a falsehood. And they’re giving Sean Spicer, our press secretary, gave alternative facts to that.”
 
It’s clear, after going over what was said and when it was said that by “alternative facts” she meant “alternate facts”. An “alternate fact” would be another fact that they choose to focus on instead of that one. One that, if you substitute it for the first, r1935belated fact, might underscore the idea they were trying to get across. The fact that it was Da Biggesssst™.   …. audience …. um … around the world, physical and electronic. She may have been ineloquent but she isn’t stupid. It wasn’t some Orwellian attempt to say that the crowd on the mall wasn’t smaller because they had an “alternative fact” that it was actually larger because they said so. Though there’s no doubt they were trying to gloss over the fact that the physical attendance was smaller (and this is important, why?). They were glossing over it by painting with a broader brush, a different fact which still had to do with audience, just not physical audience present at the event. A related fact, a fact in the same family that didn’t negate the fact that there were fewer people present, but deflected it by talking about a bigger picture.
 
So it’s much ado about nothing in the end. But it was yet another foot-in-mouth moment for the Trump camp which has never been known for its eloquence.

Fake Intellectuals

Further to a post at Z Man’s, there is exactly one political principle that doesn’t lead directly to totalitarianism: Equality before the law.  This principle cannot be amended, modified, nuanced, gray area-d, penumbra-d, folded, spindled, or mutilated.  Equality before the law, and let the chips fall where they may.

This will of course entail some outcomes that are not socially just.  Equally applied, the anti-crime laws will disproportionately affect blacks, as they commit disproportionate amounts of crime.  Equally applied, the patent laws will disproportionately favor Jews and East Asians, as they have higher average IQs.  And yes, equally applied, the laws pretty much guarantee that some people are going to get screwed, even up to, sigh, children starving in the streets.

lovejoy-think-of-the-children-16nov131

Life ain’t fair, and this notion that it’s somehow the government’s job to make life fair — thus abandoning the principle of Equality Before the Law — leads directly to tyranny:

  • There is no objective definition of “fair;”
  • Therefore, someone must be empowered to judge individual cases;
  • Anyone granted such power will abuse it;

And pretty soon we’re reduced to arguing whether that FEMA camp is a gulag, a workhouse, a concentration camp, or a thought reform center.

That’s really all there is to it.  People are what they are.  We can make up fancy theories about why this can’t happen, or that it’s actually fair, or how that guy really deserved his rubber hose time in a secret police dungeon, but at bottom there is only Reality.

Stop intellectualizing.  Stop over-thinking.  Stop rationalizing.  There is Reality, and there is Theory, and when the two conflict, Theory must yield to Reality.  You’ll find that’s true even in the gulag (thought reform center, whatever).  The way things are going, I’ll be in the next bunk over.

Nazi Fatigue

So Donald Trump is Hitler.  At least, that’s what you Lefties keep telling me.  Which is kinda strange when you think about it.  Didn’t George W. Bush — who was also Hitler — put y’all in labor camps back in 2003?  Did you get paroled or something?

But whatever.  As much as I enjoy watching you beclown yourselves, I’m going to give you some helpful advice: Nobody cares about Nazis anymore.

Seriously.  To have even experienced in any meaningful way a world with Hitler in it, you’d have to have been born in the 1930s.  To have had an informed, contemporary opinion on him, you’d need to have been born in the 1920s.  So if you’re not currently at least 80 years old, you don’t really know what you’re talking about when it comes to National Socialism.

To prove it to you, I’ll ask all of you, Left and Right, to tell me what, exactly, is so wrong with Nazism?  As we want to stick as closely as possible to the facts — we all fucking looove science, don’t we? — we’ll base our discussion on the 25 points of the Nazi Party, first put forth in 1920.  The original points are underlined; my commentary follows.

1. We demand the uniting of all Germans within one Greater Germany, on the basis of the right to self-determination of nations.  “The right to self-determination” was behind many of impeccably Progressive Woodrow Wilson’s 14 Points at Versailles; it was part of the Progressive catechism until very recently.  Ask Bill Clinton.

2. We demand equal rights for the German people (Volk) with respect to other nations, and the annulment of the peace treaty of Versailles and St. Germain.  See above, especially re: the Muslims in Serbia.

3. We demand land and soil (Colonies) to feed our People and settle our excess population.  Overpopulation has been a Lefty bugbear since at least the 1970s.  Of course, these days they’d prefer there to be less population, period….

4. Only Nationals (Volksgenossen) can be Citizens of the State. Only persons of German blood can be Nationals, regardless of religious affiliation. No Jew can therefore be a German National.  Flip “German” and “Jew” in those sentences, and I’m pretty sure you have Israel’s immigration policy.

5. Any person who is not a Citizen will be able to live in Germany only as a guest and must be subject to legislation for Aliens.  C’mon, man, this is just common sense.  Which means the Left hates it, but if that’s all it takes to make one a Nazi, I think Captain America himself is in the SS.

6. Only a Citizen is entitled to decide the leadership and laws of the State. We therefore demand that only Citizens may hold public office, regardless of whether it is a national, state or local office.  Again, common sense.  Who knew the Nazis were so reasonable?

We oppose the corrupting parliamentary custom of making party considerations, and not character and ability, the criterion for appointments to official positions.  Adolf, meet the Pendleton Act.  I guess Chester Arthur was a Nazi, too (well, he was a Republican….)

7. We demand that the State make it its duty to provide opportunities of employment first of all for its own Citizens. If it is not possible to maintain the entire population of the State, then foreign nationals (non-Citizens) are to be expelled from the Reich.  Talk about bipartisan!  Yeah, Trump’s guys love the “expelled from the Reich” part, but that whole bit about the State’s duty to provide jobs…. pure Left.  Oh, and those jobs shall pay a minimum wage of $15/hr.

8. Any further immigration of non-Germans is to be prevented. We demand that all non-Germans who entered Germany after August 2, 1914, be forced to leave the Reich without delay.  Yep, that’s Trump all right.  One of eight so far.  Definitely a Nazi.

9. All German Citizens must have equal rights and duties.  I can see why the Left hates this one, since “duties” implies “responsibility,” which implies work, which no Special Snowflake will ever undertake voluntarily.  But who could be against equal rights?

10. It must be the first duty of every Citizen to carry out intellectual or physical work. Individual activity must not be harmful to the public interest and must be pursued within the framework of the community and for the general good.  See what I mean?  Who could be against this stuff?  I’m perfectly willing to consider the possibility that Wymyn’s Studies et al is “for the general good” and “not harmful to the public interest”…. if you can explain why, without jargon or snark.

We therefore demand:

11. The abolition of all income obtained without labor or effort.  Capital gains taxes, anyone?

Breaking the Servitude of Interest.  Wasn’t that “Occupy Wall Street’s” first demand, e.g. in regard to student loans?  I just knew those guys were fascists at heart.

12. In view of the tremendous sacrifices in property and blood demanded of the nation by every war, personal gain from the war must be termed a crime against the nation. We therefore demand the total confiscation of all war profits.  Plus, that’d run Lockheed, Boeing, and General Dynamics out of business.  Right, hippies?

13. We demand the nationalization of all enterprises (already) converted into corporations (trusts).  I could swear I heard some white dude with dreadlocks demanding this just yesterday, down at the student union.

14. We demand profit-sharing in large enterprises.  So do all their employees.

15. We demand the large-scale development of old-age pension schemes.  Get your government hands off my Medicare, Adolf!

16. We demand the creation and maintenance of a sound middle class; the immediate communalization of the large department stores, which are to be leased at low rates to small tradesmen. We demand the most careful consideration for the owners of small businesses in orders placed by national, state, or community authorities.  “And the middle class” was the title of every Hillary Clinton campaign speech that wasn’t “Because Vagina.”

17. We demand land reform in accordance with our national needs and a law for expropriation without compensation of land for public purposes. Abolition of ground rent and prevention of all speculation in land.  Cf. Occupy Wall St. and any and all “community organizers” in every inner city in America.

18. We demand ruthless battle against those who harm the common good by their activities. Persons committing base crimes against the People, usurers, profiteers, etc., are to be punished by death without regard to religion or race.  Speaking of Occupy Wall St…. I think “usurers, profiteers, etc.” describes student loan lenders, don’t you?

19. We demand the replacement of Roman Law, which serves a materialistic World Order, by German Law.  “Special laws for special groups” is the cornerstone of Progressive jurisprudence.  Ask the Memories Pizza folks.

20. In order to make higher education – and thereby entry into leading positions – available to every able and industrious German, the State must provide a thorough restructuring of our entire public educational system. The courses of study at all educational institutions are to be adjusted to meet the requirements of practical life. Understanding of the concept of the State must be achieved through the schools (teaching of civics) at the earliest age at which it can be grasped. We demand the education at the public expense of specially gifted children of poor parents, without regard to the latters’ position or occupation.  Jesus, I think we should haul the OWS people up on plagiarism charges.  Of course, as “specially gifted children” — hoo boy are they special! — they’d probably get off, especially as they’re already sponging off the taxpayers.

21. The State must raise the level of national health by means of mother-and-child care, the banning of juvenile labor, achievements of physical fitness through legislation for compulsory gymnastics and sports, and maximum support for all organizations providing physical training for young people.  Insufficient.  Single payer now!!!

22. We demand the abolition of hireling troops and the creation of a national army. Not really relevant here, but it’s kinda funny hearing the Original Hessians griping about “hireling troops.”

23. We demand laws to fight against deliberate political lies and their dissemination by the press. In order to make it possible to create a German press, we demand:

a) all editors and editorial employees of newspapers appearing in the German language must be German by race;

b) non-German newspapers require express permission from the State for their publication. They may not be printed in the German language;

c) any financial participation in a German newspaper or influence on such a paper is to be forbidden by law to non-Germans and the penalty for any breach of this law will be the closing of the newspaper in question, as well as the immediate expulsion from the Reich of the non-Germans involved.  Fake news!!!!!

Newspapers which violate the public interest are to be banned. We demand laws against trends in art and literature which have a destructive effect on our national life, and the suppression of performances that offend against the above requirements.  Does Fox News violate the public interest?  Does NASCAR have a destructive effect on our national life?  Think carefully.

24. We demand freedom for all religious denominations, provided that they do not endanger the existence of the State or offend the concepts of decency and morality of the Germanic race.  No more Exploding Mohammeds?  I can live with that, and as a bone to the Left, y’all can ban Westboro Baptist.  Bipartisanship, baby!

The Party as such stands for positive Christianity, without associating itself with any particular denomination. It fights against the Jewish-materialistic spirit within and around us, and is convinced that a permanent revival of our nation can be achieved only from within, on the basis of: Public Interest before Private Interest.  Even ex-president Obama pretended to stand for positive Christianity, though of course without associating Himself with any particular denomination.  Especially not Jeremiah Wright’s hateful, anti-American denomination… at least, after He got caught, and long after Wright married him and baptized his children.  And as for that “Jewish-materialistic spirit” stuff, well, as I like to point out, “Berkeley or Nazi?” is a fun drinking game if all you’ve got is Drano cocktails.  Who was the bigger anti-Semite, Adolf or Rachel Corrie?  Or any one of the “anti-Zionist” loons you find at any large Leftie protest?

25. To carry out all the above we demand: the creation of a strong central authority in the Reich. Unquestioned authority by the political central Parliament over the entire Reich and over its organizations in general. The establishment of trade and professional organizations to enforce the Reich basic laws in the individual states.  And that strong central authority shall be… Barack Obama.  Is it still such a terrible awful no good very bad thing?

See what I mean?  By my rough count, any contemporary “conservative” could sign off on half that platform, and any modern “Progressive” would sign off on pretty much all of it.  Would y’all care to revise and extend your remarks, re: President Trump and National Socialism?

I Made Jim Give at the Office

So this meme post comes across my timeline when a friend commented on it.

I’ve seen it before.  But man.  It is so demonstrably untrue, this time I had to say something.

As with a lot of these things, there’s a lot missing. Of course conservatives care. They just don’t think they should be able to use the force of government to force anyone else to act like they care, and in what ways they must act like they care. Conservatives don’t typically have a need to be seen caring. They just do it.

To which one woman replied:

“Sorry. Cutting aid to starving children doesn’t seem like caring about anything but your own pocketbook.”

So I went on:

You talk as if aid is this thing that is just there in nature – like air, that everyone has a right to, and someone is taking it away.

It’s a matter of perspective. Aid should be given freely, not taken. When government is in charge of it, the only “taking” is done from the people who had it to begin with.

As if it is only aid if it came from the government. Well nothing comes from the government. Everything it has came from someone else (or will come from someone else, since it borrows heavily from our childrens’ and grandchildrens’ futures to pay for this aid in this generation).

And it is demonstrably untrue that conservatives don’t care and don’t give to charity. Conservatives give more to charity than liberals … here, a link from the definitively NOT conservative NYT on a study that surprised even the researcher. (note this is on TOP of what they are required to “give” through the government).

Political liberals are all about telling people how much of other people’s money people should get, but it apparently stops with supporting the mandates, not giving freely themselves.

“I’ll pass, I made Jim give at the office.”

Get this … here’s a real response I got.

Why are all of these trolls suddenly showing up on a Liberal FB page?? All of you need to leave us alone.

So you can be free to echo the hate you have based on demonstrably false premises without being challenged?  And we’re responsible for the divisiveness?

Happy Inauguration Day, Lefties!!

And as you desperately seek your Safe Spaces, remember — YOU made this happen.

If you hadn’t hurled yourselves lemming-like over the cliffs of cult-marx, identity politics insanity, dragging the unwilling nation kicking and screaming behind you, none of this would be happening.  While some Americans like Donald Trump’s policies and would’ve voted for him anyway, many more — many, many more — voted for him just to spite you.  Lots of us Deplorables are already calling the 2016 election The Great Fuck You, and we do mean you, Snowflake.  It’s all your fault.

It’s all your fault.

It’s all your fault.

So suck it, you petulant totalitarian losers.  All those precedents your president set?  They’re ours now.  That pen, that phone…  Donald Trump has one huge hand on each.

You did this, Snowflakes. And if we can’t make America great again, at least we can make you whiny little bitches suffer at least the smallest little bit of what we suffered these last eight years.  May you enjoy every single minute of it.

Zero Follow-Through

This started out as a reply to KR, below, but then it became a whole post, like so:

Lefties are like my golf shots: random, spastic, and painful to watch.  And part of the reason both suck is the same: poor follow-though.  For instance, KR tells the tale of a sad “gender-fluid” individual who insists on being called by plural pronouns, because “she (?) found gender pronouns profoundly upsetting.”  Calling her “her” is an affront to this kid’s identity…..

….BUT: If we grant that “gender identity” is

  • a) a primary component of one’s overall personal identity, and
  • b) completely malleable, and
  • c) a proper object for politics

— all of which this kid insists we do, whether or not she’d (be able to) articulate it like that — then what part of one’s identity isn’t?

Let’s say I start walking around campus, insisting that I’m no longer Severian, blogger extraordinaire, but Napoleon Bonaparte.  When people call me on this — “hey, so you decided to drop that stupid blog handle, eh?” — I insist that no no, I’m really Napoleon Bonaparte.  I was born on Corsica in 1769, I beat the Russians at Austerlitz, I revolutionized the French legal system, I schtupped Josephine on the regular, the works.

How is this any different than me declaring myself “gender-fluid” and insisting on going by “xyr”?

I know, I know, but try it.  Can you prove I’m not Napoleon?  How do we really know anything about the “historical” Napoleon, anyway?  History, after all, is a social construction like anything else, and is famously written by the winners.  By stating that Napoleon “died” in 1821, we’re really just affirming the existing power dynamics put forth by Prince Metternich, that cis/het/pat white bastard, at the Congress of Vienna.  And don’t you dare say that I’d be 248 years old if that were true, which is impossible — what are you, some kind of “age-ist”?  Nor can you appeal to DNA evidence — if Bruce Jenner is really a woman despite Y chromosomes and a full package, then the mismatch of my and Napoleon’s nucleotides is equally meaningless.  Oh, and don’t even think about suggesting schizophrenia as an explanation.  Is “gender dysphoria” — having all the outward signs of being one sex but knowing you’re the other — a mental illness?  Obviously not, you walking hate crime.  Thus I AM Napoleon, and I demand to be addressed as such.

“Your majesty” is acceptable, as is “your highness.”  You can call me the Little Corporal, but then I’d have to kill you.  And if you think this is satire, wait a few years.

Reductio ad Leftism

Stacy McCain has some questions for the radical feminists:

Any skeptic must ask, why are the categories of “man” and “woman” political? Why is there a quasi-Marxist “class struggle” between men and women,” what does it mean to describe heterosexuality as an “economic system,” and what manner of “society” could exist without heterosexuality?

Let me take a stab at answering them.  Now, obviously these are rhetorical questions — the answer, as McCain notes in the very next sentence, is: “Wittig’s purpose is to destroy “society” as it exists.”  What I want to do here is explore some of the “thought” process behind this rhetorical strategy, because trust me, your kids are getting this in college.

There’s a nugget of truth in every Big Idea Leftist academics (BIRM) have farted out over the last half century… so I guess technically it should be “sharted out,” but whatever, point is, all academic theorizing is a variation of Jon Stewart’s “clown nose on / clown nose off” rhetorical strategy.  Stewart makes some asinine fanservice remark, and if he gets too much blowback for being an obvious partisan hack, he says “oh lighten up, it was just a joke,” and points to his smirking fanbois as evidence.  If he doesn’t get called on it, though, he and all his fanbois repeat it over and over as if it’s a serious bit of political analysis, which enables them to claim that they’re Smarter and Better Informed Than You even though they get all their profound mindthoughts from a Comedy Central bobblehead.

Academia works the same way.  They like to pretend that everything, and I do mean everything, is words and nothing but words.  Which is tautologically true: Since we can only think in words, words are necessarily what we think in.  So what happens if we change the words?

No, seriously.  Maybe you weren’t a huge nerd as a teenager, but trust me, this stuff is catnip to a certain kind of dork who thinks he’s way smarter than he actually is.  Normies see you calling a rabbit a smeerp and laugh, because hey, it’s still just a rabbit.  But playing with words does change your perceptions.  Consider these definitions of “human being:”

  • A human being is a rational animal, the only known rational animal in the universe.
  • A human being is a great ape, halfway in size between a chimpanzee and a gorilla.

Both equally true, but oh what a difference!  Clown nose off, this is persuasion, a selective presentation of facts towards a rhetorical end.  Clown nose on, and in comes the unstated but lethally important qualifier, the suggestion of which is the whole point of the exercise:  “A human being is nothing but a great ape.”

So the tautology

  • “as we can only think in words, we think in words”

becomes, clown nose on,

  • “as we can only think in words, words mediate our interaction with reality”

which with the addition of some baggy pants, floppy shoes, and a seltzer horn, becomes

  • “as words mediate our interaction with reality, words create our reality.”

which of course is logically equivalent to

  • “reality itself is nothing but words.”

And boom, you’re a Social Justice Warrior.*  My preferred pronouns are “xyr” and “jermajesty.”

dipkoukmvc8uryknny8f

Should anyone challenge you on this… well, since you usually only hear stuff like this in the academy, what you do is fail ’em and report ’em to the Dean for hate speech.  But if someone on the Board of Regents, say, asks you — pink slip in hand — if you’re really teaching undergrads that reality itself is nothing but words, you take the clown nose off and say oh no, of course not, we’re only teaching that words influence perception.

And that’s how you get feminists asserting that “man” and “woman” are political, that there’s a class struggle between them, et cetera ad nauseam.  It’d make your eyes bleed to do this for every item on the list, but here’s a brief e.g.:

“Masculinity,” say, is both DEscriptive and PREscriptive.  When we define behavior X as “masculine,” we’re saying “X is what real men do;” at the same time, we’re also saying “if you want to be considered a real man, do X.”  And who is this “we”?  Why, the community of language-users, of course.  And since that community changes, the sense of the word also changes — the Vikings had a word for “masculine,” no doubt, but it meant something very different than the English word.  Which means notions like “masculinity” are (nothing but) “social constructions;” they change as society changes.  And how does society change?  Via politics, of course, since “politics” is defined as the interplay of personal preferences in the public sphere.  Thus words like “man” and “woman” are, at bottom, political categories.  You and I and my prison gang voted; you’re the woman.

Feel free to take the final exam: If social life is nothing but economics — which follows, clown nose on, from the observation that people exchange stuff for other stuff — you should easily be able to deduce why heterosexuality is an economic system, and thus explain the quasi-Marxist class war between the sexes.

Yes, they really do think like this.  They have to — without the notion that life itself is nothing but words, Leftism will always founder on Reality’s rocks.  I’ve given you the academic version, but you can see it everywhere these days.  It’s why the Cult will never give up on the idea that Putin hacked the election, for example — if he didn’t, then the American people really did prefer Trump to their terrible, horrible, no good very bad candidate Hillary, which is unpossible.  So they’ll keep repeating it until it’s true, and it will be true — until the last remnants of the USA are overrun by superintelligent apes, it’ll be a true fact that everyone knows Putin hacked the election for Trump.  Because if you can just get enough people to repeat if for long enough, reality itself will conform to your magic, magic words, because after all, since we can only think in words, words mediate our interaction with….

QED.

 

 

*The Six Readers will undoubtedly recognize this as The Gem, aka The Worst Argument in the World.  I seriously can’t recommend David Stove enough to y’all.

The Force Field of Self Esteem

That armor's too strong for blasters...

That armor’s too strong for blasters…

Wait, no, that’s not the one I want…

dipkoukmvc8uryknny8f

Ah yes, much better.  Anyway, a brief thought inspired by this and this.  The latter is about religion:

According to reports coming out of Hope Community Church, first-time visitor Brittany Wilson remains unsure about why she needed “this Jesus guy” in her life after the pastor spent the entire Sunday sermon reiterating how awesome, amazing, unique, and special she is.

“The message was super-encouraging. It was all about how I need to let the goodness within me shine and ‘just do me,’ without worrying about all the haters,” Wilson said after the service.

“But then the pastor said I needed Jesus, out of the blue. Like, what? It made no sense. I’m not sure what He has to offer that I don’t, based on how wonderful the pastor said I am.”

The former is about social changes causing political restructuring.  At Z Man’s I said:

The biggest challenge is going to be handling the precipitous drop in functional intelligence. NOT IQ, which is grossly overemphasized (by us deplorables, anyway), but functional intelligence. Big problems require sustained thought, and lots of us can’t do it. And of those who can’t, the vast majority — looking at you, Millennials — not only don’t know they can’t do it, but think they ARE doing it. Consider that a blog post over 500 words doesn’t get read… and even 500 is a slog when you’re used to Tweets. Reading multiple posts (or, God forbid, an entire one of those “book” thingies), taking notes, collating information, sifting, evaluating… not only do lots of us not know how to do this, we don’t even know that it can be done. Trump isn’t Hector Elizondo Mountain Dew Camacho, but any government structure that retains a popular vote in the Twitter age will trend hard that way, without major structural overhaul.

I’m only pointing out the obvious, but someone has to, I suppose, and at least you got a Slave Leia picture to sweeten the deal.  Combine the two — the Gospel of Self-Esteem and Twitter, I mean, not Slave Leia and another Slave Leia —

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wait, what were we talking about again?  Ah yes, combine self-esteem and the ADD-inducing effects of technology, and you get an entire generation that’s incapable of sustained thought… and worse, thinks it is so capable, and in fact does it all the time, and how dare you suggest they don’t know how to do something?  Because, as the Jesus lady says, if you’re special unique and perfect just the way you are, why would you ever need any but the skills and knowledge you already possess?

And we all fall victim to it.  For instance, I’m frequently bewildered by liberals’ ability to flagrantly contradict themselves — often within a few sentences, sometimes in the very next breath — without suffering aneurysm-inducing cognitive dissonance.  I shouldn’t be, though, as I “teach” Millennials day in and day out.  They think in Tweets.  I mean that almost literally (“literally,” he said, snapping another selfie with is iPhone) — every sentence they hear is a discrete, context-less meme.  It doesn’t matter if the meme is true, since there is no “truth,” only popularity.  If it doesn’t get retweeted or upvoted, it ceases to exist.

Thus, “contradiction” is a meaningless concept for them.  Both X and Not-X get upvoted, so both of them are somehow true.  Look, I don’t pretend to understand it, but then again, I’m comfortable with the fact of my own limitations.  When I say “I don’t understand it,” it’s taken as read by us old farts that that’s why I’m posting my thoughts here — I’m thinking it through, and would appreciate input.  These kids, though, don’t grok limits to their understanding — if they don’t understand something, it is by definition irrelevant, and can, indeed must!, be ignored.  Contrary information and badthoughts get bounced off their force fields.

A Brief Note on Higher Ed

UPDATE: see here for more (and here for good free educational resources.

Read ’em and weep:

For some reason, a widespread belief exists that the president of a college or a university (or even a 2-year junior college) deserves to live a life of luxury.  No fewer than 30 higher education presidents are earning over a million dollars a year, compensation that rightly should outrage families indebting themselves to pay tuition.

The sad truth is that higher education has gone from being a calling to a racket, in all too many cases. And the rot extends from the top to the bottom of the status hierarchy. Arguably, higher education is the biggest industry on the country, and certainly for many families with children in college, it is the second most expensive purchase in a lifetime, after a house.  That pile of money draws all sorts of scavengers.

I’m in the “higher” “education” business, and I will swear to you on a stack of the holy text you hold most dear — yes, even a dog-eared copy of Playboy or Das Kapital — that college is the biggest scam in the history of the world.  Your professors are, in 998 cases out of 1000, creepy autistic cult-marx weirdos who have never packed the gear to serve in the real world.  At this point it’s a chicken-and-egg problem as to which came first, their cultural marxism or their creepy weird autism, but it doesn’t matter, that’s what you’re getting in every single classroom.  Yes, every single one — STEM is no refuge anymore.  The only place you can get away from the drumbeat of their silly goddamn politics is the lab, and unless you’re 100% metaphysically certain you’re going to go into a career that carved-in-stone requires some bench work, DO NOT GO TO COLLEGE.

Do not send your kids to college.  Do not let your friends and relations send their kids to college.  I’ll cut you a deal, which I promise in Obama’s America is a major bargain: Send me a check for half your kid’s prospective college’s annual tuition.  Your kid will be just as pig-ignorant of important stuff like American History and critical thinking, I promise you, and you’ll be saving 50%, plus helping ol’ Whatzerface the college president up there move into the cardboard box under a freeway overpass her real-world skills so richly merit.

And since this post is almost entirely content free, here’s a free bonus picture of Slave Leia.  What a bargain!

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