Thursday, January 21, 2021

Trump Leaves The White House Like A Failed Coup Leader

Pretty much right--which doesn't mean there was an attempted coup, nor that Trump led one. But he's sure leaving like one. Dems and the MSM are exaggerating the badness of the Capitol riot by more-or-less the same degree that they minimized the badness of the BLM/Antifa riots--or so it seems to me. I'm not sure how to think about the Capitol riot. It was bad...but "terrorism," "sedition" and "insurrection" seem...not clearly accurate. One thing seems clear: it's not reasonable to "valorize" the BLM/Antifa riots and rioters on the one hand, only to then demonize the Capitol riots and rioters on the other. Both deserve strong condemnation. If I had to make a more fine-grained judgment, I'd say that months of rolling riots with 20-30 times as much murder and $1-$2 billion in property damage--not to mention massive crowds entering residential neighborhoods to terrorize and attack ordinary citizens--well...that's worse. Especially when you add the sustained siege of federal buildings, the taking over of state government buildings, etc. The Capitol riot was worse symbolically...because we just don't care much about miscellaneous federal buildings elsewhere, nor state buildings, ordinarily. I was revolted and outraged by the Capitol riot--but I'm not inclined to spin up fake hysteria about it. The Federal government is strong; the riot was--killings and other deaths to the side--mostly about bruised dignity. The BLM/Antifa riots were much more deadly and much more substantially destructive. Or that's my view of the matter currently, anyway. Unfortunately, it's hard to get a clear fix on all this against the backdrop of highly-politicized media and blue-team hysterics. If we were having a rational public discussion about this, my (tentative) opinion might be different.
   So, coup hysteria aside: Trump's leaving in disgrace, despite a strikingly successful presidency...right up until he lost the election, lost us the Senate, and conferred us to the tender mercies of the progressive left...

Everything Is Racist: NPR On Stephen Miller And *Camp Of The Saints*

 [facepalm]

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Biden: "We Must End This Uncivil War"

By non-progressives capitulating to progressivism and adopting the policies and worldview of the antiliberal left. 
   I'm very much in favor of civility--and Loesch is right: it's better to aim for civility than unity. 
   Also at the Insty link: Pantyfa attacks Dem HQ in Portland, makes it clear that they hate Biden, too, and that they have no interest in peace.
   Finally: I have no particular interest in making nice with someone who won the Presidency by repeatedly and falsely accusing his opponent of racism. In particular, the repetition of the provably false "very fine people" hoax tore it. And remember: they used their big guns, racism-wise: if they had any actual evidence of racism, they wouldn't have leaned almost entirely on a provably false claim. 
   Oh and: in case you think that was just about Trump, it wasn't. That's exactly what the left will do to you, too, if you cross them. You know that's true. And that's why you probably keep your head down. 
   Thank God we're done with Trump's incivility, though! Because mean tweets are infinitely uncivil than overt lies and character assassination undertaken with the preferred, approved liberal demeanor.

Biden Signs 15 Executive Orders On First Day

 Mostly bad. Some terrible. My relief at having Trump gone was short-lived. But, hey, no more mean tweets. And I guess that's what really matters.

Trump Gawn

Well, overall I am fairly sure this is bad for the country.
But TBH it'll be nice to be able to relax a bit.

Insty: Gaining Power Hasn't Made The Left Any Less Crazy

 Agreed, but they've been running at maximum crazy-power for years now. It's still possible that they'll throttle back. I'm not saying I'd bet on it--I'm just saying it could happen. OTOH, they've been in power almost everywhere for a long time. It hasn't exactly filled them with benevolence, mercy and tolerance... The vanguard of the left is hopeless. The real question is whether the remnants of the liberal left will start standing up to the radicals. But it's not even clear there is such a remnant--i.e. it's not clear the center-left exists / disagrees anymore. They may have been assimilated.

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Trump Authorizes DoJ To Declassify Russiagate Documents

 First good news in quite awhile.

McConnell: Trump Provoked Capitol Mob

Yeah. That's what I'm inclined to think. Or have been, mostly, since the Capitol riot--or SEDITIOUS, SATANIC UPRISING! or whatever they're calling it now.
I basically still think he (irresponsibly and falsely) shouted 'Fire!' in a crowded theater. As I've complained many times, nobody ever uses that analogy right. But I think it's basically apt here. Except in that Trump seems to have basically convinced himself that there was a fire... So he believed it--or seemed to. That's a sort of defense...but since he irresponsibly convinced himself, he's guilty anyway. Just of something slightly different. Such epistemic irresponsibility might constitute an excuse for an ordinary person. But not the POTUS.
   Hubris, among other things. Trump couldn't believe / couldn't admit that he lost. And to Joe Biden! That dude is barely ambulatory. I wouldn't want to lose to him, either. 
   Anyway, as I already said, you can't tell a bullshit story over and over again, with great conviction, about how someone is doing something horrible to the country...and then assemble a hug crowd...and get them all pumped up...and admonish them to be peaceful once...it was once, right? Nah, that's not going to be defensible. 
   OTOH, I suppose, he could respond that it was mostly a couple of crazies and some weird groups no one has identified yet egging people on...and the vast majority of people not only weren't moved to riot, but refused to participate and were appalled when they found out about it. So...pretty thin gruel as incitement goes. And pretty weak-ass effort if it really was supposed to be some kind of coup. I mean...Viking horns guy? Really? The blue team keeps trying on new dysphemisms for what happened. What are they up to now, anyway? What comes after 'treason' and 'coup' and 'sedition'? 
If you explicitly admonish them to be peaceful, and the vast majority complies with your admonishion... Hmm... Well...Maybe not.
   Anyway, Trump's a dumbass and he f*cked up, that's for sure. But now I'm having second thoughts about "provocation"...and "incitement".
   It's him acting crazy that struck me hardest. Seemingly really believing this Total. F*cking. Insanity. about "them" "stealing" his "beautiful landslide"... That's just nuts. Just, plain nuts.
   And, again: I want an investigation. And we already know there were Democratic shenanigans. But that nonsense Trump was spouting...Jesus Christ.
   But, anyway, that's apparently not the sort of thing for which the 25th Amendment was intended, else I'd be tempted in that direction. But if passionately believing crazy falsehoods would trigger it, which contemporary Democrat could last more than a few days in office? So anyway, that's out.
   Anyway, I don't understand the issues well enough to have a firm opinion. I just want some decision that's plausibly reasonable...and for something to happen to derail that big blue train that's bearing down on us.

Secure The Vote

 link.  I agree that we should deal with this before it's an issue. Once such a thing is a hot disagreement, it's too late. My own view is that security / reliability / trustworthiness is more important than increased participation. In fact, I'm actually against any effort to persuade people to vote. Voters are ignorant enough as-is. Non-voters are undoubtedly even more ignorant. If you aren't engaged enough to be motivated to vote, then I don't want you to vote. I also think the Pubs should re-institute voter ID laws as soon as they're back in power, and nix mass mail-in voting in favor of the old system--if you have a good reason to vote via absentee ballot, you can request one.

Biden Appoints New "Science Is Real!" Advisor

Could be worse...I'd have predicted Bill Nye.
As you can see from Biden's list of sciencey stuff, by 'science' he means stuff progressives like. I'll bet Merriam-Webster has already changed the definition...

Slow Joe's Inauguration Speech To Emphasize American Unity; He Will Then Repudiate And Undo As Much As Possible Of What His Predecessor Accomplished

Gosh, it's so nice of him to want unity with the treasonous, seditious, racist, deplorable insurgents...right before he nukes as many of Trump's politically incorrect achievements as possible...
   His agenda is utter shit...but, hey--no mean tweets! 

Anti-Trump Inauguration National Guard Theater

Trump--may God, eventually, have mercy on his soul--deserves all the ridicule he gets after the last two months of psychopathy. I expect this to be the end of him, actually. He humiliated himself, and I don't see how someone with his ego can survive that. Though I guess he could use the same superhuman powers of denial that allowed him to convince himself that the Illuminati mind-controlled people into voting for Biden or whatever.
   So anyway, I don't care about that part. This isn't any kind of back-handed defense of Trump.
   It's ridicule of the other side. 
   Massive fencing--though walls and fences (a) never work! and (b) are immoral!...and despite the fact that they can't really be immoral if they don't work--all around the inauguration site. Massive National Guard presence...because somebody on Reddit made a joke about the boog. No, wait: almost all conservatives have been driven off of Reddit. So .win? No...I think they're being driven off .win as we speak... Well, anyway. AND apparently the Guard is being assigned on the basis of political orientation--so units more likely to be composed of mostly Trump voters are allegedly being placed farther away from the inauguration...
   You, ah, realize this is all crazy, right?
   I mean, the Trump riot was crazy, as goes without saying. 
   But this is the other flavor of crazy. It's like the left only has two settings--rabid, shrieky insistence that they are right about everything...and hysterical terror. 
   Of course I'm not saying that all Biden and Dem voters are like that. I suspect--and hope--that most people who voted for Biden did so with great reluctance, but figured him to be the lesser of the available evils. I'm talking about something like the public, collective persona of the progressive left. That quasi-person is crazy as hell.
   Anyway, I expect that this is all intended, in large part, as another bit of political theater to further discredit Trump and the right. LOOK! THEY ARE SO DANGEROUS THAT WE HAD TO...etc. etc.
   OTHO, as the left gets crazier and crazier, and consolidates its near-total control of, well, everything...isolated crazies on the right fester.  And are pretty likely to eventually blow. And, to make matters crazier, they have a tendency to do it--as we've seen over and over--in a way that provides a massive boost to the left.
   Anyway. Maybe this is more than merely Trump-discreditation theater. But it's at least that.

Positive BatFlu News Has Been Buried...But For Mysterious, Inexplicable Reasons, Is Now Being Revealed

I, for one, cannot think of any reason whatsoever that this might be:

But don't stop wearing your mask, citizen! That has not been authorized! Continue to do as you are told until you are told to do otherwise. [And what a coincidence that this would happen just as Cuomo has declared that NY can't stay locked down anymore, and will unlockdown soon. So weird.]

Monday, January 18, 2021

Biden Appointees: "Systemic Racism" A Major Driver Of The Climate Apocalypse

[facepalm]
Thing about Trump's crazy is that it was never made official crazy. The very fact that Trump believed it meant that it would automatically be politically incorrect heterodoxy.
Progressive crazy is always made official crazy.
To repeat myself: one way you know climate apocalypticism is bullshit is that even the apocalypticists don't believe it. If you really believed that we faced a "climate emergency," you'd train all your policy firepower on that target. If you really thought we had 10 years to save the world, you wouldn't be screwing around with other problems--not even the Satanic scourge of "systemic racism." Thing is, of course, progressive crises are always just crisisy enough that we don't have time for rational discussion...but not so crisisy as to prevent wasting plenty of resources on other fictional progressive obsessions.

Plato's Wokeon (Or: Orthoxodon): A New Translation Of A Disputed Dialog

Abject Apologies To Dominion Voting Systems Start Rolling In From Conservative Outlets

 Those were of course, the craziest of the theories.

There's As Much To Learn From Trump's Success As From His Disgrace

 More, actually. Especially: the good, commonsense policies and appointments. It's too bad he blew it all to hell in the final two weeks.

Claim Of Massive Biden Ballot Dump In GA "Doesn't Hold Up"

Henry I. Miller: Little-Known Facts About The COVID-19 Pandemic

Interesting.
   If true, a couple of things: 
   First: the pandemic is more serious than conservatives have tended to represent it as being.
   Second: it still seems to me that across-the-board lockdowns are kinda crazy. Still seems like we ought to be focusing on folks who are old-ish and sick-ish. The young and healthy could contribute to that project while mostly getting on with their lives. Depriving them of schooling and early-career jobs is going to have negative repercussions the rest of their lives. Or so it seems from the perspective of a non-expert. 
   Third: I'm still baffled about the vaccines--again, especially when the young are at issue. There seems to be no evidence that they reduce transmission rates. All they seem to do is mitigate symptoms. Which suggests that we may be just creating a lot of asymptomatic spreaders. One wouldn't have to be crazy--would one--to suggest that it's better that infected people manifest symptoms. And if the young tend to socialize more, and are basically not at risk from the thing, why push such vaccines on them? Presumably reducing the severity of symptoms also reduces fatality rates...though I've never seen this affirmed explicitly.
   Finally: rumors of permanent organ (including brain) damage persist. I continue to wonder whether it's concerns about this that is driving what seem like indefensible fears about younger, healthier people getting the thing. 
   It's surprising to me how little sense the official story--as it trickles down to me, anyway--still seems to make. 

Biden Set To Mandate Acceptance of Transgender Mythology In Schools

 The Federalist is nutty when it comes to issues that impinge on religion, but they tend to get the other stuff right. Hey, ever notice how the left goes at young people with all their weird sex stuff? Not only their brainwashing--it's clear why they choose the young for that--but also with respect to the more intrusive and totalitarian of their policies? E.g. making rules at colleges for how people are permitted to have sex? For all Trump's crazy, he wasn't crazy enough to think that there are male women and female men. Transgender ideology and its policy repercussions are progressivism in a nutshell: radical re-engineering of society based on patently false, pseudoscientific, quasi-religious beliefs adopted on the basis of political preference rather than rational argument.

   And, just a reminder: I think that sex-segregation of the facilities at issue is an institution one can reasonably question. Just not by making patently false claims about males becoming girls/women by fiat and whatnot. If we want to seriously reconsider such social arrangements, it's got to be done in a way that's at least f*cking minimally reasonable. But the left knows it can't win the debate if it's conducted reasonably. That's why they decree debate to be "hate speech" and advance their social reengineering plots through e.g. the Department of Education, lawfare, and indoctrination of kids.

   Your blue future, ladies and gentlemen...er...and xirs and xers... 

Biden Set To Do More Damage To The U.S. In One Day Than All Of Trump's Worst Screw-Ups Combined

We are so f*cked:

Crimestop Is A Cornerstone Of Political Correctness

“Crimestop means the faculty of stopping short, as though by instinct, at the threshold of any dangerous thought. It includes the power of not grasping analogies, of failing to perceive logical errors, of misunderstanding the simplest arguments if they are inimical to Ingsoc, and of being bored or repelled by any train of thought which is capable of leading in a heretical direction. Crimestop, in short, means protective stupidity.”
                                                                                                    -- Orwell, 1984

Sunday, January 17, 2021

The Queen's Gambit

We finished watching it last night and thought it was great. Anya Taylor-Joy is an absolute knockout. No matter how much mileage they get out of those eyes of hers you always want more. I never really notice/appreciate sets in period pieces, but man, even I noticed and enjoyed all the late-50s/early-60s stuff. Some of the hotel rooms are nuts. The actual chess content's pretty light--that's really my only complaint. And they're always moving so quickly that it's basically speed chess. But I guess you can't really have a tv show in which everybody just sits around staring at the board for hours.  Anyway. First tv show I've really enjoyed in quite some time, I think.

DoJ Walks Back Ridiculous Claims About "Kill-Capture" Teams At Capitol Riot

 I didn't take those claims seriously enough to even post about 'em.

Dems Take Another Step Toward Open Borders

link

Here comes the hoarde.

Saturday, January 16, 2021

NEW SUPERCOVID RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!!!!!

 The important thing is that you be afraid.

"Crying 'Whataboutism' Doesn't Make The Left's Support For Rioting Go Away"

Again, the actual, grown-up term for "whataboutism" is 'tu quoque.' Tu quoque is a type of ad hominem argument. Commonly, it's a kind of consistence ad hominem. Although people often call it "the ad hominem fallacy, not all ad hominems are fallacious. Many ad hominem arguments are valid (and sound)--especially in cases of testimony. If I expect you to take my word (i.e. testimony) for something, then certain ad hominems will be valid--e.g. if you accuse me of being a liar, or of being ignorant of the matter about which I speak. One is apparently supposed to be guilty of "whataboutism" if one deploys a consistency tu quoque against someone. 
   My general view about such arguments is that they often grind to a stalemate on account of being insufficiently clear. If the right's argument were this:

    The left defended/praised the BLM/Antifa riots 
    Therefore:
    The Capitol riot was defensible/praiseworthy

...Well, that seems to be an invalid argument. (Non-deductively invalid, I mean. Obviously deductive validity isn't at issue here.) 
   OTOH, if this is the argument, it may be valid:

    The left strongly defended/praised the BLM/Antifa riots
    The left strongly condemned the Capitol riot
    The two are too similar to sustain such disparate judgments
    Therefore:
    The left's judgments about the riots are inconsistent

 Well...that's a pretty strong/valid (again: non-deductively valid) argument. Is it sound? Well, the first two premises are true. Everything really turns on the third premise. Which I think is true--or true enough to do the trick. But: reasonable people disagree about it.
   At any rate: usually people aren't quite sure what they're arguing in cases like this. They often don't have determinate intentions/beliefs. 
   My own view is that the Capitol riot was disgusting, crazy, and ostentatiously f*cked-up. But there seem to have been a wide range of people and, hence, aims and intentions. Some were just stupid and pliable. Some had genuinely nefarious aims. Some were leftist agents provocateurs. Some seem to have been rightist APs. Some were let in by cops. Some broke in. Some forced their way in. What happen ought to be strongly condemned...but, as usual, the left seems to be exaggerating the wrongness of the thing and using it for political ends. It's not that the right doesn't do such things--it's just that the right is so powerless and voiceless that it basically spends all its time playing defense. 
   The BLM/Antifa riots were far more substantively destructive. And the left has perpetrated and/or defended just about all the components of the Capitol riot: they've attacked and occupied government buildings, used violence to achieve political ends, mounted organized opposition to governmental authority, undertaken acts such that deaths were foreseeable consequences of those acts, destroyed property, desecrated symbols of the country...and done it all for false reasons. 
   Now, of course, one act can be worse in virtue of combining many such elements into one. 
   And arguing that the left is being inconsistent does not necessarily excuse the Capitol riot. But the following is a reasonable position:
The Capitol riot was very bad, but we're not yet sure exactly what happened, nor sure how bad it really was. The left seems to be exaggerating its badness--likely for political ends. The left, now being radical, has a penchant for inconsistency. It is not reasonable to "valorize" the BLM/Antifa riots and hyperbolically condemn the Capitol riot. The fact that the left is so often inconsistent about such things--and permitted to be inconsistent--is the source of much contemporary political irrationality. Some degree of consistency is required.
   None of this rolls Trump into the picture...but I've got stuff to do, yo.

[Oh, and: none of this takes into account the argument that the left, basically, created conditions under which riots came to be considered not merely possible and not merely permissible, but downright laudable...]

Biden Assistant AG Pick Wrote That Blacks Are Superior To Whites B/C Of Neuromelanin

Even Newsweek has to concede this one.
   Her defense is apparently that the piece was a kind of reductio ad absurdum/parody of The Bell Curve...which is misrepresented at length in the Newsweek piece as per usual... There's no link to the Clarke piece, so I haven't read it yet. At any rate, Newsweek concludes with a standard PMSM "fact"-checking move: having marshalled evidence that the charge against Clarke is true, they conclude that it's "mostly true." 

Funny How Cuomo Et Al. Have Decided, A Week Before Biden's Inauguration, That Now It's Imperative To Reopen

People on the right predicted this a long time ago. 
Progressives and the MSM have--undeniably, I'd say--fanned the flames of COVID hysteria. Basically from the beginning. Or, anyway, as soon as the MSM stopped derisively dismissing it as just a cold. They've used every low-down, despicable tactic to undermine Trump. Exaggerating the danger and harm of the Wuhan virus is in no way beyond the progressive left--which is, of course, not to say that everyone on that side of the fence participated, nor would do so. 
   But, one way or another, many, many folks on the right long ago floated a test of the hypothesis: that if Biden won, the hysteria would let up and blue states would start re-opening. 
   So was this a conscious strategy by the left? Perhaps to some extent and by some people--e.g. Cuomo. More commonly, though, it's likely just the result of bias, which distorts one's whole way of seeing such things. Progressives are already more risk-averse than conservatives. They believe Trump to be the devil, and see everything he does through that lens. It's very common in lefty comments sections to see people saying that Trump is responsible for all batflu deaths in the USA. Do they really believe that? They really sorta do. To some extent it's belief, and to some extent it's more like attitude: they see everything Trump-related as bad, horrific, dangerous. Not that Trump didn't give them plenty of ammunition with his chaotic claims during his daily batflu briefings. Because, lord, he sure did...
   But anyway. We are getting more evidence now that lockdowns aren't worth it. So the case is somewhat fuzzy. Though such information has been available for months now...
   I suppose one could say: now that Trump is decisively defeated, it's safe unlock...
   But who knows? I'm not objective about all this either.

Friday, January 15, 2021

Gleichschaltung Watch: Petitioning Harvard To Revoke Trumpista's Degrees

Trump's narcissistic insanity not only brought out the crazies on the right, it's provoked a kind of Operation Warp Speed of political correctness. More and more informal resources are being deployed to punish politically incorrect thought, speech and action. Not to deflect justified criticism of that disaster...but the backlash from the PC left is going to be much, much more destructive.

Lockdowns: No Benefit?

link.  I had tentatively concluded that they'd have benefits, but those would be outweighed by the costs. Of course we don't really know yet.

WSJ: COVID-19 Death Toll Even Worse Than It Looks

Big if true.

Incidentally: if this is right, my hunch was wrong. I thought the conservatives were right and that this was being over-hyped. I still wonder whether it's helpful to measure its deadliness in terms of death rather than quality-adjusted life-years, given that the deaths are so heavily skewed toward the very old. Nevertheless, looks like I was wrong. Also this looks like a big strike against the conservatives in the great wrongess battle with progressivism.

Et Tu, Fitbit?

Gone to Google.  Lovely.