If you haven’t swung by WOW Magazine lately, maybe today’s the day. Watcher’s Council members have turned a gimlet eye to today’s issues.
No matter how sad, crazy, or offensive the news is, there will always be clever people making great visual for the illustrated edition post.
A snapshot of Trump Derangement Syndrome: the different responses to reports about Trump’s alleged insensitivity versus Hillary’s selling America to Russia.
Yesterday’s news broke two stories, one detailing massive national security infractions involving Russians during the Obama administration and one reporting the claim that Trump was insensitive to the widow of a Green Beret who died in the line of duty. The response to these two stories on my Facebook feed was predictable and depressing.
News story No. 1 was a fully-sourced report about the utterly corrupt way in which the Russians went about obtaining rights in American uranium during the Obama administration:
Before the Obama administration approved a controversial deal in 2010 giving Moscow control of a large swath of American uranium, the FBI had gathered substantial evidence that Russian nuclear industry officials were engaged in bribery, kickbacks, extortion and money laundering designed to grow Vladimir Putin’s atomic energy business inside the United States, according to government documents and interviews.
Federal agents used a confidential U.S. witness working inside the Russian nuclear industry to gather extensive financial records, make secret recordings and intercept emails as early as 2009 that showed Moscow had compromised an American uranium trucking firm with bribes and kickbacks in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, FBI and court documents show.
They also obtained an eyewitness account — backed by documents — indicating Russian nuclear officials had routed millions of dollars to the U.S. designed to benefit former President Bill Clinton’s charitable foundation during the time Secretary of State Hillary Clinton served on a government body that provided a favorable decision to Moscow, sources told The Hill.
The racketeering scheme was conducted “with the consent of higher level officials” in Russia who “shared the proceeds” from the kickbacks, one agent declared in an affidavit years later.
Although fully aware of these corrupt practices, including Hillary’s weighing in on a matter that personally benefited, the Obama administration still gave the nod to a deal that put increased Russia’s nuclear power at America’s expense. The story was buried. That it came out now was because of a whistle-blower.
The above story is uncontested, disgraceful, and not subject to any interpretation other than realizing that Obama ran a corrupt administration, one that benefited his cronies, and that he did so to America’s major detriment. It certainly explains, though, why Obama of all people has been relatively silent about the post-election anti-Russia hysteria (and highlights what an idiot Hillary is that she can’t let the subject drop).
And of course, this report ought to resonate strongly with all those people who’ve been terribly worried for the past year about Russia’s malevolent influence within America. That they cannot make themselves comment upon it says that they’re focus on Russia was driven by Trump Derangement Syndrome, not a concern about America’s well-being or about how Russia can endanger America. [Read more…]
For a brief time, the civil war at the 1968 Chicago Democrat Party convention was more consequential than the battles still taking place in Vietnam.
In my previous post about the Ken Burns’ Vietnam documentary, I looked at his coverage of the Tet Offensive — both what he included and what he excluded. Last night I watched the episode about the months immediately after the Tet Offensive. Here are a few thoughts:
1. The Tet Offensive was a disaster for North Vietnam. Although Burns shies away from saying it, it’s apparent that, if Johnson had listened to his military advisers, rather than his political advisers, and pressed harder against the North, the war would have ended quickly with a North Vietnamese defeat.
2. Burns touches lightly upon the fact that, in North Vietnam, people were beginning to realize that their government was lying to them. One person stated that the government spoke only of victories (the Tet Offensive was sold as a victory) and never once acknowledged that any troops had died. The fact is, though, when you have over 1 million combatant deaths, people might start noticing.
3. America’s troops in Vietnam were incredibly brave.
4. Burns pushes hard on the narrative that most American men fighting the Vietnam War were mostly poor, dumb college drop-outs who were drafted against their will. Even the Washington Post, though, has acknowledged that this is a myth:
Between 1964 and 1973, volunteers outnumbered enlisted troops by nearly four to one. Nor did the military rely primarily on disadvantaged citizens or African Americans. According to the Report of the President’s Commission on an All-Volunteer Armed Force in February 1970, African Americans “constituted only 12.7 percent of nearly 1.7 million enlisted men serving voluntarily in 1969.” A higher proportion of African Americans were drafted in the early years of the war, but they were not more likely to die in combat than other soldiers. Seventy-nine percent of troops had at least a high school education (compared with 63 percent of Korean War veterans and 45 percent of World War II veterans). And according to VFW Magazine, 50 percent were from middle-income backgrounds, and 88 percent were white (representing 86 percent of the deaths).
Those volunteers who sit for interviews all see the war as a waste and a mistake. That is, once again, Burns excludes from the show men who thought the war was important but that politics prevented it from being successful.
5. American goods kept the Saigon economy afloat, and there was tremendous graft and corruption. I haven’t independently researched this point, but I don’t doubt that it was true. This same corruption saw South Vietnamese troops, based upon information acquired through a CIA program, torture and summarily execute people they thought were Viet Cong. Graft and vengeance killings are historically par for the course in war, but they don’t look good played out on American televisions.
6. What we were seeing at home was a Democrat civil war: the Johnson pro-War party versus the McCarthy anti-War party. That war spilled onto the streets and into the convention hall during the Democrat’s 1968 convention. Neither side came out looking good. And if you’re looking for police brutality, just take a look at Mayor Daley’s good Democrat cops brutally attacking white, middle-class youth. As I discuss at points 8 and 9. below, in 1968 this war was more consequential than the actual fighting in Vietnam. [Read more…]
Progressives again show their retreat from reality, this time with a t-shirt claiming MAGA supporters, whose candidate and agenda won, are “losers.”
During the 2016 Presidential campaign, Donald Trump had promised “We will have so much winning if I get elected that you may get bored with the winning.” The MAGA team believed him and he turned the electoral map red everywhere except in coastal areas and large urban enclaves.
True to Trump’s promise, while his administration has made some errors (President Trump should have fired Comey and indicted Hillary on January 22), there’s also been a whole lot of winning. Here’s a partial list:
- Justice Gorsuch is a win.
- The roster of conservative judges President Trump is nominating to the federal court system is an ongoing win.
- Withdrawing from the Paris Accord was a win.
- The speech President Trump made at the UN, defining and defending American sovereignty was a win.
- The ongoing effort to shrink the administrative state is a win.
- Ben Carson, Betsy DeVos, and Ryan Zinke are wins.
- The booming stock market is a win.
- The slowly expanding economy is a win.
- The Trump administration’s ability to block terror exporting nations from sending people to America is a win.
- ICE’s stepped-up actions and the diminution in the flow of illegal aliens to the US are ongoing wins.
I don’t think any of the MAGA crowd are bored yet with this winning. They’re counting on more. The reality is that, with Trump slowly but steadily dismantling the Obama state, his MAGA supporters are very pleased. Moreover, as the guys at Power Line show (especially Paul Mirengoff), even those who did not vote for Trump, and are not true MAGA-ites, are pleased. It’s been a delight to watch the more reasonable NeverTrumpers come around.
It’s also been pretty darn pleasing watching the new converts talk to those who have walled themselves off in NeverTrump Land (a cold, dank, hopeless, ugly place). What they’re saying is that the obdurate NeverTrumpers have become intellectually dishonest and are making themselves pariahs to all thinking conservatives.
With all this MAGA winning in mind, how in the world does one explain this t-shirt? [Read more…]
With Progressives fighting for cultural ascendance, we are entering an ideological Twilight Zone that’s bad for America, but really great for a blogger.
Hold onto your hats, my friends, because this is going to be a huge collection of all things interesting, mostly relating to the madness emanating from today’s Progressives. I’ve been compiling posts all day and I’ve finally bestirred myself to stop collecting and start writing.
Before I dive into my material, though, my friend Wolf Howling sent me an amusing email replete with wonderful links, mostly about those crazy Progressives:
The latest in grievance theater from the dumber than dirt: “Texas Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee kneeled during a speech on the House floor Monday . . . ” as she accused Trump of racism. Of course, she has competition. Take a knee against white supremacy, Dr. Gu. Of course, Paul Joseph Watson hits the right notes:
In what can only be described as a headline for our time: “Far-right lesbian mother of two AGAINST gay marriage is set to take on Angela Merkel after triumph in German elections.”
From Annenberg Public Policy, Only a quarter of Americans surveyed could name the three branches of government. Idiocracy was supposed to be a movie, not prophecy. That said, I am coming to believe that this is not a failure of education, but a goal of substituting social justice, white privilege and white supremacy for civics in k-12.
Instapundit’s latest at USA Today echoes what Bookworm has been saying for years about her Marin neighbors: They get ahead by practicing bourgeois values, but then defend to the death dysfunctional cultures as their equal.
Well, it’s probably cheaper and easier to eat your Tinder date as the barbecue than to take your Tinder date to a barbecue.
Kim Jong Un take note: The Dummies’ Guide to Creating A Fusion Bomb. If only a single fission bomb wasn’t enough to generate a catastrophic electro-magnetic pulse.
The proggies don’t embrace science, they manipulate it. ‘A British University has blocked an academic studying a reported surge in people regretting transgender surgery, claiming a “social media” backlash to the “politically incorrect” research could harm the institution . . .”
Ann Althouse makes a point about experts — in our Founding and in Climate Change. It’s fascinating that the academic in question who rightly stated the facts on a truly arcane point of American history is an academic in Ireland. If you want to find a true student of your nation’s history, seek out a foreigner.
And now to my finds:
Progressives are never responsible. I used to date a man who would periodically lob offensive comments my way. I’d answer back, he’d respond, and before you know it, we were fighting. He told me that all of the fights were my fault. His theory was that, just because he pitched, I didn’t need to swing. In his world, you either agreed with his offensive comment or you offensively started a fight. I thought of that when I read Dennis Prager on the NFL spat:
Apparently, the question, “Who started it?” means nothing to the journalists, politicians and NFL players, coaches and owners who call the president “divisive.”
So, before discussing Trump’s reaction, our fellow Americans on the left need to answer some pretty simple questions: Has the behavior of those athletes has been divisive? Is kneeling while tens of thousands of people are standing divisive? Is publicly showing contempt for the American flag for which innumerable Americans risked their lives, were terribly injured, or died divisive?
The answers are so obvious that if someone denies that those actions are divisive, it inevitably raises another question:
Why would anyone deny it?
Progressives identify the wrong slave masters. One of the things my German father loathed about American football was the stench of the slave auction that hung about it. By the 1970s, no home team really had home team players. Instead, the “home” team was composed of people (as often as not black people) who were bid for at auction and then traded all over the country. Sure, one can say that the players get big salaries in exchange for this indignity, but that merely makes them analogous to house slaves, rather than field slaves.
And who are the slave masters in this human trade? The NFL owners, of course.
Leftists’ elevating theory over facts destroys everything, whether climate issues or, as now know (and are thankful for), Hillary’s political campaign.
Do you remember the old Rodney Dangerfield movie, Back To School? Dangerfield plays a self-made industrialist millionaire who follows his son to a fancy Ivy League school. Some of the movie’s best humor comes from the culture clash between the real (or “normal” as Kurt Schlichter would say) Dangerfield and the poncy, disconnected professor who lives in a world of theory, unrelated to facts.
In the pivotal culture class scene, Dangerfield schools a business professor who prefers to deal in widgets rather than facts and, indeed, who thinks that his theories are the equivalent of facts:
There’s a lot of unintentional humor in What Happened, as Hillary Clinton cluelessly reveals that she is a foolish, deceitful, entitled, nasty woman.
I’m still slogging my way through Hillary’s turgid tome, What Happened. The more one reads it, the more one realizes how accurate the joke in the post to the left: What Happened [by] Hillary Rodham Clinton really is a book that has both the question and answer on the front cover.
Hillary, working hard to sell herself, comes across as just an awful woman or, on second thought, an awful simulacrum of a woman. There’s no there there. Instead, there’s a narcissist defined by her core emptiness.
Two recent reviews perfectly sum up everything that’s wrong with the book. If you ignore the usual Trump-bashing that is required from all Progressives, you cannot do better than to read this review from the Huffington Post. It is vicious and entirely on point. Also, Kyle Smith’s review perfectly articulates my thoughts as I slog my way through the book.
Given the quality reviews already out there, this post is not going to be a book review (especially because I’ve only read 30% of the book so far). Instead, I’ll share with you those passages that I found hilarious (Hillary-ous?) although Hillary did not mean them to be so. I’ll also throw in a few ironies, some sarcasm, and the occasional moment when common sense runs into Hillary’s self-serving arguments.
To begin with there’s the endless name-dropping from someone who keeps insisting that she’s just an ordinary person, completely tuned in to the lives of ordinary people around her. Here’s a representative passage, describing her idea of some R&R during the campaign:
One beautiful summer evening, Jimmy and Jane Buffett hosted a concert for us at their home in the Hamptons on Long Island. I was the first presidential candidate Jimmy ever endorsed, and he wanted to do something special for me. So he, Jon Bon Jovi, and Paul McCartney played a set in a tent full of twinkly lights, and everyone danced on the lawn under the stars. It was magical. (Clinton, Hillary Rodham. What Happened (Kindle Locations 1379-1382), Simon & Schuster edition.)
I don’t know that I’ll ever feel the same again about Jimmy Buffett. I already lost interest in Paul McCartney because of his Bush bashing.
One of the points critics have made about both Hillary and her book is that she’s the ultimate “Progressive as micromanaging expert.” There really is no big political picture. There’s just Hillary’s “I know what’s best” attitude, one that sees her following every meeting with a “regular” person by announcing that she has a new policy initiative in her bag of tricks. For example, she took on bullying:
Many kids asked what I would do about bullying, which made me want to become President even more. I had an initiative called Better Than Bullying ready to go. (What Happened (Kindle Locations 1387-1388).)
First of all, this is really not a presidential issue and a presidential candidate shouldn’t be wasting time on it. Second of all, the lack of self-awareness is hysterical. After all, this is the same First Lady described as a monster of abuse when it came to Vince Foster: [Read more…]
The Independent Institute’s Vicki Alger educates Americans about the fact that the Department of Education burns money without actually educating anyone.
Although the San Francisco Bay Area isn’t know for its conservatives, it’s home to two phenomenal conservative think tanks: The Pacific Research Institute (PRI) in San Francisco and The Independent Institute in Oakland. It’s the latter the concerns me in this post and that really deserves to be celebrated today.
The first reason the Independent Institute concerns me today is because it’s celebrating its 30th Anniversary tomorrow night with a splendid Gala for the Future of Liberty. It’s going to be a fun and intellectually stimulating event. The honorees are Yeonmi Park, who escaped from North Korea; Vernon Smith, an economist and Nobel Prize winner; and Tim Draper, a Silicon Valley venture capitalist. P.J. O’Rourke will emcee the event. I’m lucky enough to be attending. Yay! I love a birthday party that’s more about great ideas, which expand my mind, than about cake, which merely expands my waistline.
The second reason to celebrate the Independent Institute is because the thinkers in this think tank have realized that there’s an up-and-coming generation of young people who are ready to break free of the stifling Leftist orthodoxies with which they’ve been raised. While older Millennials may be too deep into Progressivism and the Social Justice Warrior ethos to reach, the younger end of the Millennial generation and the post-Millennial generation are trending conservative. This means that they might be open to new ideas.
With that in mind, the Independent Institute put together a clever, entertaining, and thought-provoking set of videos in which a Big Gov guy cheerfully, and in the name of love, stalks, obsessively controls, and completely stifles a bright young woman. The series is appropriately called “Love Gov.” You can find all the videos here, but this one is my favorite — and it’s especially relevant now that the Democrats are lining up behind fully socialized medicine:
The third reason to celebrate the Independent Institute is that I haven’t forgotten how, three years ago now (or was it four?), Mary Theroux, an Independent Institute Board Member and Senior VP, gave a talk about the fact that the US government was spying on everything we said and storing it away in warehouses for later mining should it decide to focus its gimlet eye on us for some reason. Because I deeply respect Mary’s knowledge and intelligence, I knew she was telling the truth. And yet a small part of my brain kept saying, “That can’t really be happening, can it? That’s just to banana-republic-ish and Orwellian.”
Well, time has shown that this small part of my brain was an idiot. It is really happening — the government is listening and the Obama administration did weaponize the data it collected for political purposes both before and after last year’s election. That’s how it came about that Samantha Powers, a UN Ambassador who would never have any need to unmask the names of American citizens talking with foreigners, was unmasking American names at a rate sometimes exceeding one request per day.
The fourth reason to celebrate the Independent Institute is because it arranged for one of its fellows, Vicki E. Alger, to come talk to a luncheon group with which I’m involved. Vicki’s specialty is education — more specifically, federal involvement in American K-12 education — and that is a very hot topic now. After all, when a fifth grade teacher in Tallahassee sends a note home with students explaining that the teacher is to be addressed as “Mx Bressack [sic]” and that, in an appalling attack on grammar, Bressack further demands that the children call Bressack by the plural pronouns “they, them, and their,” you know American education is veering wildly off course. [Read more…]
Hillary Clinton’s sore loser behavior is a direct attack on American democracy. Trump’s tweeting a golf ball meme is an appropriate and mild response.
The media arm of the Democrat party, also known as the mainstream media, is in an uproar because President Trump retweeted a very funny gif that The People’s Cube created, one showing one of his golf balls knocking Hillary down:
Starting this Sunday morning and all day afterwards the world’s most serious and respectable newspapers and magazines (see the impressive list below) have been having conniptions and reaching for smelling salts. Why?
Because Donald Trump retweeted our silly animated GIF.
If you are a regular here at the People’s Cube, you may have seen this meme, which is only a funny metaphor of last year’s elections.
The image is obviously a joke. More importantly, it’s a deserved response to Hillary’s latest authorial effort, What Happened.
Reading the book (or listening to anything Hillary has said since November 9, 2016), it’s apparent that Hillary has never about America’s “gracious loser” tradition. This tradition is not a mere formality. It’s an important part of handing over power in a representative democracy.
Democracies retain their character only if people believe in them. (It’s sort of like clapping your hands if you believe in fairies.) Once people become cynical, the people’s party is over and tyranny steps in. So again, the good loser tradition is not mere symbolism; it is important and meaningful.
Hillary, however, is a very, very bad loser. Here are representative quotations from just the first couple of chapters in her book: [Read more…]
Hillary Clinton’s campaign retrospective, What Happened, provides an in-depth look into a selfish, self-serving, hypocritical, and morally clueless person.
Believe it or not, I have been reading Hillary Clinton’s What Happened, in which she presents her take on why she lost her campaign to become president of the United States. I didn’t spend money on it, mind you. My library had it available for download, so I downloaded it.
Having now read some 12%, I can say that the book is vintage Hillary, a toxic combination of ambition, distraction, uglification, and derision, all told with a cutesy venom that is simultaneously nauseating and boring. It’s like watching the job interview from Hell, the one in the interviewer asks the interviewee to explain some peculiarities in the resume and to answer that hated question: “What are your greatest weaknesses?”
After lying about the resume, the interviewee from Hell gets to that dreaded question. As you know, because all of you have prepped for that question, the expected answer is something along the lines of, “My greatest weakness is that I simply don’t know when to stop working. I need to remember that it’s just not fair to do the work of 12 people better and more cheaply than they could do put together.” That type of answer is Hillary all over — boastful, smarmy, and manifestly dishonest.
Oh, and there’s the hypocrisy. On the one hand, Hillary keeps attacking Trump for being divisive and presenting herself as a partisan healer. On the other hand, for Hillary, the vast right-wing conspiracy lives on. Republicans are evil, duplicitous, mean-spirited and, really, the world isn’t meant for one as beautiful as Hillary. She’s the Van Gogh of the American political scene, a visionary who inspires not only love from her enlightened (but too lazy to vote) acolytes, but the hateful derision of the deplorably evil and uninformed.
Much of the book also reads like a political speech from a 1940s Hollywood movie. You know those speeches. That was the time when Hollywood genuinely tried to appear bipartisan in order to bring in the widest paying audience possible — and in order to cement a core American identity. Hollywood writers were adept, in movies about politicians, at writing meaningless speeches with feel-good statements about American greatness, better economies, strong national security, and cute little boys and girls in their beds at night. Hillary does the same.
The book is also saggy because the reader is in the head of a women who self-consciously believes her every move and thought has relevance for the betterment of the world. She cycles endlessly between several different personas: vapid political philosopher, saccharine grandmother, poison spitting partisan and, always, a woman who’s Pollyanna optimism leads to her being used and abused by a variety of (mostly right-wing) people blind to the purity of her motives and actions.
That’s the general tone of the first 12% and I seriously doubt that the remaining 88% will offer anything different. However, since I’d just started this tome, as a read, I highlighted several passages that I thought were illuminating or amusing, so I’ll share them with you here. [Read more…]
Hurricanes are normal, but Trump Derangement Syndrome obscures that fact. Of course, those subject to TDS are deranged in other ways as well. Just look….
Before I get to the meat of this post — or, because it’s a round-up, the various meats of this post — I want to remind everyone that America has always been subject to ferocious hurricanes. They just seem worse today because we have more population in a hurricane’s path, especially when it’s an Irma-like hurricane, and because we have a 24 hour media that makes everything seem local.
In other ways, though, we’re better off when faced with hurricanes because we can prepare. In 1900, Galveston, Texas, residents did not see their Cat 4 hurricane coming. It killed 6,000 – 12,000 people, making it the deadliest natural disaster in American history. For a list of other major hurricanes in the last 400 years, the bulk of which predate “climate change” and struck out-of-the-blue, go here. You’ll see that America was especially hard hit in the 1700s, long before CO2 was an issue.
Obviously, I don’t mean to downplay our two latest hurricanes, Harvey and Irma, both of which are or will be responsible for staggering property damage and, always, the loss of too many lives. I just want to amp down the usual climate change hysteria that’s accompanying this latest display of Nature’s normal.
And with that, let me turn my attention to all the other interesting things I’ve gathered, many of which reflect poorly on those most deeply lost to TDS.
Hillary admits her incompetence. Hillary has been on the warpath with her new book, blaming everything and everybody for her loss. She’s also admitted that she was incapable of speech on election eve because she was so devastated and that it was male advisers who caused her to react less strongly to both Trump and Bernie than she thinks in retrospect that she ought to have done. (Oh, and Trump “creeped” her out.)
So Hillary has just admitted that she’s incompetent in a crisis and incapable of standing up to men. Most of Hillary’s opponents at home and abroad would have been men, men like Putin, Xi Jinping, Kim Jong-un, or Bashir al-Assad. Her latest book is just another reminder that we dodged a serious bullet when Trump won.
Europe’s Muslim future. Guy Millière, a professor at the University of Paris, sees which way the wind is blowing and he understands that, not only is Eurabia fast approaching, but that Western Europe leaders are hastening its inevitability:
Europe’s leaders seem to have neither the will nor the means to oppose the incoming waves of millions of Muslim migrants from Africa and the Middle East. They know that terrorists are hiding among the migrants, but still do not vet them. Instead, they resort to subterfuges and lies. They create “deradicalization” programs that do not work: the “radicals,” it seems, do not want to be “deradicalized.”
Europe’s leaders try to define “radicalization” as a symptom of “mental illness”; they consider asking psychiatrists to solve the mess. Then, they talk about creating a “European Islam“, totally different from the Islam elsewhere on Earth. They take on haughty postures to create the illusion of moral superiority, as Ada Colau and Carles Puigdemont did in Barcelona: they say they have high principles; that Barcelona will remain “open” to immigrants. Angela Merkel refuses to face the consequences of her policy to import countless migrants. She chastises countries in Central Europe that refuse to adopt her policies.
European leaders can see that a demographic disaster is taking place. They know that in two or three decades, Europe will be ruled by Islam. They try to anesthetize non-Muslim populations with dreams about an idyllic future that will never exist. They say that Europe will have to learn to live with terrorism, that there is nothing anyone can do about it.
Pat Condell is another prophet who is being ignored:
Meanwhile, Britain prepares its citizens for dhimmitude. Several of my gay Leftist Facebook friends proudly posted a WaPo op-ed announcing that all the grim prophecies preceding legalizing gay marriage failed to come true. It is true that heterosexual marriage is cratering at pretty much the same rate as before, so one can’t say that same-sex marriage killed it. The article also essentially claims that America is better than ever because Christian bakers are being put out of business.
It’s that last point, of course, that’s the giveaway about the real target of gay marriage. Gay marriage, as I’ve said over and over, was never about competing with straight marriage and it was unlikely to affect straight marriage. What it was about was undercutting traditional values, especially if those values came from the church. Kill the traditional church (and the synagogue) and you kill the West. It’s heart goes out of it.
(Before I go further, let me say again, that I have no trouble whatsoever with same-sex civil unions. If states want to legalize same sex partnerships, that’s fine with me. I support people who enter into stable relationships. It’s the way the whole issue was framed as gay “marriage” that disturbs me deeply. Doing that made these unions the basis for a concerted attack against traditional Western values as a whole.)
If you really want to see where gay marriage leads, check out this Australian Spectator article detailing the way in which gay marriage has been used to attack core Western values, not to mention to destroy the integrity of our biological selves. I’ll focus on the gender and children sections, but you should read the whole thing: [Read more…]
After explaining how the Left invented a detachment from reality, Kurt Andersen makes the laughable argument that the Left, not the Right, is reality-based.
A Leftist friend of mine told me that novelist Kurt Andersen’s article in The Atlantic, entitled How America Lost Its Mind : The nation’s current post-truth moment is the ultimate expression of mind-sets that have made America exceptional throughout its history, is a “must read.” Although the article is ostensibly about a movement that began in the 1960s, one that saw America abandon facts in favor of emotions and magical thinking, the article is really a very, very, very, very long effort to say that Trump voters are credulous and irrational.
Because I am a nice person, I will not ask you to read the article — unless, of course, you are a glutton for punishment and have endless amounts of time. Instead, I’ve worked my way through this magnum opus to distill the essential points in each paragraph. To save you the time of even reading my summation — which, while long, is still shorter than Andersen’s article — here’s a quick summing up of what he says:
During the 1960s and 1970s, America went crazy. It was mostly the Left that went crazy, especially in academia, where our colleges abandoned truth and, instead, settled for moral and cultural relativism, navel gazing, and Foucault’s “everybody makes it up as they go along” theory. This madness swept the land.
Fortunately, by the 1980s, the Left managed to distill only the purest and truest thought from this insanity. Conservatives, meanwhile, embraced the crazy because they believed in God and distrusted both Big Government and the media. They were aided by the end of the Fairness Doctrine, which allowed the crazies to hit the airwaves. First Rush and then the internet convinced conservatives that there is a God, and that both Big Government and the media deserve to be distrusted.
And that’s how we got Trump.
Andersen’s turgid, long, frequently ignorant, invariably condescending, and very nasty essay boils down to a variation of the saying that “Fascism is always descending on America, but landing on Europe.” According to Andersen, “An unprincipled retreat from reality is always bubbling and burgeoning on the Left, but only reveals itself on amongst conservatives.”
That’s really what Andersen takes 117 paragraphs to say. I know, because I read all of them and, as noted above, I’ve set out below a precis of his wordiness, along with my interlineated comments: [Read more…]
Although academia has been seeding American Leftism for 70 years, Trump, despite his many foibles, is the weapon that will destroy that system.
This is going to be a slightly more discursive post than usual, simply because I’m trying to tie together three disparate thoughts. Thought One is how we got here, by which I really mean how the Left got where it is and managed to completely cow conservatives, especially those ostensible conservatives elected to Congress. Thought Two is to remind you to read a stellar post telling Trump how to handle Mueller. And Thought Three is another stellar post explaining precisely why Trump’s support is unwavering, no matter the hue and cry from the Left.
How we got here
We got here because of academia. When Marxism first hit America, it hit at the worker and union level. In America, at least, the workers of the world really were trying to unite. Unfortunately for their initial success, their unity took forms that were antithetical to most Americans.
To begin with, many of the workers were foreign, highlighting the fact that Marxism too was foreign. To Americans who still read the Constitution, Marxism was scarily alien. It’s values were too unlike ours and they resisted it strenuously.
Another problem with early Marxism in America was that many of its early supporters openly espoused violence, which most Americans found frightening. Back in pre-WWII America, nobody on the Marxist side of the equation had the wits to come up with something called Marxophobia and then to try to make Americans feel guilty about it. Americans felt no guilt when they feared the violence and totalitarianism that Marxism promised.
Lastly, Marxists back in the day insisted on talking like Marxists, with all sorts of ridiculous words and phrases such as “dialectic” and “come the Revolution,” and an insistence on talking about the “proletariat” and the “bourgeoisie.” It was, quite simply, off-putting.
What the Marxists figured out during WWII, thanks in no small part to the Left’s huge push to bring America to the aid of the Soviet Union once Hitler invaded Russia, was that, while Americans were not amenable to hard Marxism, they could be totally swayed by soft Marxism. This idea landed hardest and best in America’s colleges and universities. There, mild-mannered professors in rumpled, tweedy suits carefully indoctrinated their students in a whole new way of thinking about America’s liberties.
Mostly, these academics inculcated in their middle-class students a sense of guilt about America’s bounty — never mind that the bounty resulted from hard work and innovation. To the Leftists, America’s wealth, no matter that it was earned, not inherited, was evil, and young people had to pay for their countries’ sins. Moreover, when students protested against this indoctrination (and yes, back in the day, some did), the same Marxists hid behind the Constitution’s protections.
This was a brilliant strategy. If you’ve got the college students, you’ve got the next generation of elementary and high school teachers, and the next generation of news people, and the next generation of screenwriters, and the next generation of women’s magazine writers, and the next generation of college professors. And with each iteration, with each generation that passes through, you can dig in the message harder and deeper, until you end up with the insanity of intersectionality, cultural appropriation, safe spaces, triggers, political correctness, and all the other tropes that work as vehicles for intellectual tyranny.
If you read Helen MacInnes, who wrote during the height of the Cold War, you see everything already spelled out in her books. She had the number of that first generation of indoctrinators. This is most apparent in one of her lesser known books, Neither Five Nor Three, which she published in 1951. [Read more…]
The banal news that Donald Trump Jr tried to get dirt on Hillary exposes Progressive delusions as a collective dementia unresponsive to actual facts.
In 1848, Charles Mackay published Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds. The preface to his first edition explains the idea behind the title:
THE OBJECT OF THE AUTHOR in the following pages has been to collect the most remarkable instances of those moral epidemics which have been excited, sometimes by one cause and sometimes by another, and to show how easily the masses have been led astray, and how imitative and gregarious men are, even in their infatuations and crimes.
Four years later, when a second edition came out, Mackay expanded upon the notion of collective delusions:
IN READING THE HISTORY OF NATIONS, we find that, like individuals, they have their whims and their peculiarities; their seasons of excitement and recklessness, when they care not what they do. We find that whole communities suddenly fix their minds upon one object, and go mad in its pursuit; that millions of people become simultaneously impressed with one delusion, and run after it, till their attention is caught by some new folly more captivating than the first.
Having established his predicate, Mackay described some of history’s best known mass delusions, including “The Mississippi Scheme,” “The South Sea Bubble,” and “The Tulipomania.” Had Mackay lived long enough, he would undoubtedly have written about Florida’s land boom in the 1920s or Orson Welles’ War of the Worlds’ broadcast. I like to think, too, that had he lived into the 21st century, he would have written about Climate Change madness and, most recently, the Progressives’ Russia hysteria.
Before I delve more deeply into this subject, I need to make clear that I’m talking about genuine delusions, rather than mistakes, misunderstandings, or bias. A delusion is when an alternate reality occupies the brain and refuses to be displaced.
For example, whenever my mother was in the hospital, she suffered from “sundowning,” a common problem for elderly people in hospitals. (It’s also a regular problem for people with Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia.) For those who are hospitalized, starting as they are from a point of illness and, usually, fear, their older brains have a hard time processing the hospital environment.
Not only is the hospital an unfamiliar place, its rhythms are antithetical to natural biorhythms. Lights are on all the time, food appears at random times, patients are woken up at all hours of the day and night and, of course, there are drugs, lots of drugs. The elderly tend to hold things together during the day but, at night, their brains rebel and they start having serious hallucinations.
One of my mother’s hallucinations was that two German physicians came into her room to examine her. When they heard me coming, though, they quickly left through the other door so that they would not have to interact with me.
From my point of view, the beauty of this delusion was that it was provably wrong. The room had only one door. The “other door” to which she referred was a window that looked out over three stories. In this, the hallucination differed from some of her others, which involved nurses locking her in dungeons overnight or aliens taking over my body during the night. I truly thought that, armed with this indisputable fact, I could put to rest her fear that those German doctors were going to harm her.
What both fascinated and frustrated me was that no proof could dissuade my mother that the German doctors hadn’t been in her room and then left through a third floor window. It was as if a part of her brain had been hijacked by the delusion and was incapable of accepting countervailing data. For her, there was no mistake, misunderstanding, or bad dream. There was only a fact — an utterly wrong, easily falsifiable fact — but in her brain it lived and there it would stay, frightening her a great deal, until the day she died.
Is there any difference between my mother’s delusion and the Progressives’ Russia delusions when it comes to Donald Trump? I don’t think so. [Read more…]