RANGER AGAINST WAR: The Circle Jerk <

Thursday, August 24, 2017

The Circle Jerk

A republic, if you can keep it
--Benjamin Franklin

If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, 
people will eventually come to believe it.
-- Joseph Goebbels

We try to hustle them, 
try to bustle them, try to cuss them
Another day, another dollar, 
another war, another tower
--Who Will Save Your Soul,
Jewel
____________________


[War is our stock in trade here at Ranger. Apropos of that, this is the first of a three-part critique on our media's descent into madness, thereby committing a war for your mind, and why you feel so perturbed and menaced today, and think things are falling apart. They may be, but not in the way you think they are.]


Do you love me, now that I can dance?

The mainstream media (MSM) has pulled off a great moral and ethical heist, and it all happened so quickly -- in their would-be twilight -- as the cultural critics were singing their swan song.

Papers across the nation were shuttering their doors (166 since 2008) and the reporting profession lost more than 50% of its rank and file over the last 20 years (most in the last five years.) But just before the casket lid was closed -- in this watershed moment -- the media made a pact with the devil to save its skin.

To staunch their bleeding, they co-opted billionaire entrepreneur Pierre Omidyar's model in his oxymoronic "opinion news" tabloid, The Intercept (refashioned lately as a "national security blog.) Media "reportage" became a circus seemingly overnight, the players dancing madly under the protection of diaphanous Big Top of former respectability.

No longer was the oxymoron absurd, dastardly or a piker's error, and Omidyar's model provided to the media the way to the greatest resurrection since Lazarus came back from the dead. Five years ago, the standard press was moribund --DOA. Now, the MSM were players once again.

While the papers and reporters are still gone, the press has gained cachet by adopting a new paradigm: All furore, all the time, with no pretense of rigor, and no apparent goal to their delirium and agitation. The holy grail of fact-checking has melted away in favor of the newsish, "bystander cell phone footage caught ...", or "In a leak today, ...".

Righteous indignation projected towards the solution of a moral offense is one thing (we have laws to cover legal transgressions.) But that is not what we have now, though we may trick ourselves into believing it is so, or that such a thing might be quantifiable, adjudicatable or in fact, newsworthy.

What we have is a free-floating angst focalized toward any crumb we are fed. Smut is the coin of the realm, and if the news makers have no thing, insinuation and sneers will do. The goal is pandemonium, and an instantaneous and white hot fury is the expected response from even previously thoughtful and informed consumers.

Now, we are ridge runners all. Thomas Hobbes had it right: it is a war of all against all. The media found the keys to the kingdom when they learned to transmute itself into a Zippo.


"Fire 'em up!

The old woman at a 2007 South Carolina church rally for candidate Obama had it right. A controlled candidate Obama was trying to appear down-home. He requested that attendees get stereotyped cousins "Ray-Ray and Pookie" up off the sofa to vote.

The speech was dwindling down on its own enervation when the woman in the back (Edith Childs) harnessed the power of "call-and-response" with her well-placed shout out, "Fired up, ready to go!"

While the scholastic Obama himself did not quite light the fuse, once the bodies started swaying and fist-pumping, it was all she wrote. The crowd had self-ignited, and like a stadium wave, its momentum carried itself.

That was an instructive moment in modern politics. People LIKE to get agitated, whether for good or bad. Since we have now abdicated our rationale, we easily turn "Hatfield and McCoy" when our media overlords sound the alarum.

Judicious reportage is no longer needed in the face of vanity social media feeds. The New York Times' Jim Rutenburg asked if it was o.k. to cover Mr. Trump's Presidency solely from a position of opinion, so malignant, so sui generis was it to the average NYT's reader.

Our nation's paper of note decided that the President demanded a new way of being covered, despite the fact that he won the Presidency in a most mundane fashion. It had the look of a plebiscite, but it was a foregone conclusion.

Writer Matt Taibbi said that the news was signing its death warrant if it bought into this, and trust in press impartiality would be gone. It was a last stand for dignity. (Mr. Taibbi soon joined the other side, seeing on which side his toast was buttered.)

Turns out, we do not want impartiality; what we want is to be able to whank off with others who think like we do. It feels so good that we have ceded our wits to them. Dopamine and adrenaline are powerful motivators, and we will do anything to keep the supply coming. We may now be too ill, too drunk on the toxic brew, to give up our fix.


Co-opting and Re-directing Anger

President Obama's administration oversaw a renascence in the news of police clashing with black citizens, an issue which appears like a sine wave in the media. This time, however, the events combined with the ubiquitousness of social media, allowing the images to be uploaded and shared in real-time.

Nothing was off-limits, and speculation ran rampant before the least fact could be vetted. Nothing new was happening in actuality under Obama, but the presentation and reaction to is WAS new. WE now created our reality out of bits and pieces ingathered from the sources which spoke to our predilections.

This "news wobble" became obvious several years ago when noticing the headlines from the same major news outlet delivered to my two email accounts differed considerably. After pondering the matter, the only difference was that from the older email address I wrote to mainly conservative friends; the other, primarily liberal.

The news which arrived in the first box box tended to be more optimistic and "news-like", of the old ilk. However, my newer email received only incendiary coverage, angry and rarely offering balanced viewpoints.

The media is trafficking in your fear and anger, and selling it back to you with the halo of righteousness. You are co-opted into their project when you re-send their content to 5,000 "friends". You have become small-time Soma pushers and fail to realize your complicity.

News goes on auto-pilot, as you function like HuffPo's unpaid "content generators", adding your own glib comment. But unlike the HuffPo non-wage-slaves, there is no hope of gaining a writing day job for all of your efforts.

You are mental bondsmen, compelled by habit to "help the revolution". It's just what you do, sun up to sundown, and beyond.


Bad Brilliance

So, the MSM (which was on oxygen) made a life-saving move. They would co-opt and harness the anger of the black community. They have subverted a moral and institutional failing, stripped it of its facticity, and are using the ensuing white hot fury as bellows to keep them alive.

This should make you mad. Your outrage can now be directed to any issue of their choosing. You are like bulls with ringed noses.

Think about it: they did not raise your ire against president Obama for his inability to contain the racial violence which erupted under his terms, and the media now owns that real estate (i.e., your violent impulses). They are practicing their dark arts now, and have led you to another pasture, re-directing your anger upon a focalized point of easy derision, President Trump.

This is as fine a work of agit-prop as I have seen in my lifetime. It is legerdemain of the highest order.

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50 Comments:

Anonymous David said...

Both the liberal mainstream media and the conservative media realized years ago something that the pharma industry and the sugar industry did much, much longer ago. Not only is it far easier to win subscribers by telling what they already believe instead of telling them facts (which they might or might not believe), but it's far cheaper, too. You don't have to send an investigative journalist on a fishing expedition to the Middle East. You can pay a columnist half the cost or less to sit at home with his laptop.

You have nailed it here, I think:

"Turns out, we do not want impartiality; what we want is to be able to whank off with others who think like we do."

Thursday, August 24, 2017 at 6:03:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger mike said...

...a focalized point of easy derision, President Trump.

Yes, extremely easy. And it started long before he went into politics. If you were paying attention, you would have noticed he was being mocked for his antics 30 years ago. Hypocrites and grifters have always been easy targets for the press. And Trump is a first class snake oil salesman. That plus his insatiable ego are what brought him his infamy.

But at least he is a job creator for the press. Alas, not for any of the rest of us.

PS - I'm happily retired, no need of a writing day job. But I do enjoy a little left jab now and then at fakers and four-flushers like Trump.

Friday, August 25, 2017 at 9:34:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

Right, David. It costs money for a paper to keep staff, to develop sources and to travel. Most just tear stories off the wire today, sans vetting.

The most salacious story gets front page. I picture our predisposition to rage and gossip today is just a ramped-up version of the beauty or barber shop of yore. Perhaps a bit more cirmcumspection, there.


Mike,

I said it, so I believe it.

I also said, "the story here is not the story."

Mr, Trump is not the story. Sadly, everyone's all in. In my final two pieces, I hope to give the lie to you and your fellows easy rage and derision.

Meanwhile, your country loses opportunities for betterment daily.

Friday, August 25, 2017 at 10:44:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

P.S. to mike:

Just because something is easy to do does not mean it is the right thing to do, or that one should do it for that matter. (You don't make fun of handicapped people, do you?)

Sometimes, the right thing to do is the hard thing.

Friday, August 25, 2017 at 3:53:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger mike said...

Lisa -

We agree on much. Yes, sometimes the right thing to do is the hard thing, and conversely easy-to-do things are not always the right thing to do. And yes, 'our' country loses opportunities for betterment daily. However even though I agree with you on those statements I do so with an different perspective. And I agree with both you and Dave on the laziness of the media.

With all due respect, you lost me regarding one of your comments. Making fun of handicapped people? No, I do not. Are you implying that Trump is handicapped in some way, or that he should have a special dispensation for freedom of mockery by American citizens? Every one of our presidents from #1 George Washington up to #44 Obama were mocked in one way or another. Why should #45 be any different?

Rage? Not me, why subject myself to a possible stroke. But I confess to the derision you mentioned.

As always, thank you for the opportunity to put my two cents in. My regards to the RAW.

Friday, August 25, 2017 at 8:18:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lisa,
I was thinking today about politics after taking a break from allowing the topic to enter my radar screen for a few days.

Something dawned on me. Back when I was left leaning and voted Democrat, one f the reasons I did so was that I did not like how the right - especially the Christian fundamentalists and moral majority types - wanted to use the govt to impose and enforce "morality" and a certain strain of thought, that they were convinced was correct, on the rest of us. Now it is the progressives that are the ones that want to impose purity of thought on the rest of us using the govt as the strong arm. They're actually more virulent about this than the right wing ever was. The whole thing has flipped. I realized that this flip coincided with my move to the conservative side (though I'm actually a moderate libertarian).

Since the media tends to be left leaning, the media has become another bully pulpit for social and legal enforcement of a certain strain of thought.

A pox on them. They are what they used to claim to hate.

avedis

Saturday, August 26, 2017 at 1:54:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Avedis

More and more I am convinced that all of what I think of as culture wars is basically a political sham designed to keep the same ruling class in power.

Consider what happens to political promises when you strip away the identity politics from both sides. Barack Obama runs promising to nix NAFTA and get the U.S. out of imperial foreign wars. Donald Trump runs promising to nix NAFTA and get the U.S. out of imperial foreign wars. This seems to be an agenda that goes over well with Americans of most political stripes, which makes sense: basically, government should cease to be a vehicle for enriching a small wealthy elite by ignoring the rest of the people when it doesn't need them and sacrificing them when it does. If that sounds like too leftist a way of putting it, you can reword it in whatever way makes more sense from the perspective of the Trump crowd.

Heck, even Clinton ran promising to cut back on new free trade agreements like the TPP. Even the dimmest of dim Democratic bulbs could not possibly have believed her, but the point is, and all credit due to the American people for this, clearly it's reached the point where you cannot possibly get elected by supporters of either party by promising anything other than to tear down the elite agenda. In such a situation, identity politics is a useful way of keeping the masses in line.

Saturday, August 26, 2017 at 9:36:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger mike said...

Avedis -

You say "...the media tends to be left leaning."

That statement seems to be a catchphrase or dogma of conservatives, including the main stream conservatives, the neocons, and the alt-right. And yet they only say that about the media that does not repeat right wing gospel.

They conveniently forget to tell you about the right wing media listed below:

The American Conservative
The American Spectator
American Thinker
Breitbart
TheBlaze
Chicago Tribune
CNSNews
Conservative Review
Daily Caller
Daily Signal
Daily Wire
Drudge Report
The Federalist
Fox News
FrontPage Magazine
Gateway Pundit
Heat Street
Hot Air
Human Events
Independent Journal Review
Infowars
LifeZette
National Review
The New American
Newsmax Media
New York Post
One America News Network
PJ Media
RedState
Right Side Broadcasting Network
Townhall
Twitchy
Wall Street Journal
Washington Examiner
Washington Free Beacon
Washington Times
Weekly Standard
WorldNetDaily
VDARE

And that does not even include the tabloids. Especially the one that Trump owns that is displayed by the cashier in every supermarket in America that is still going after Hillary ten months after the election with photo-shopped pics and outright lies.

That line about the left leaning media is getting old and stale. ou guys need to come up with something better.


Sunday, August 27, 2017 at 1:20:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Perhaps he meant to suggest that those publications don't rise to the level of responsible journalism anyways and therefore don't merit consideration.

In any event it's a strange conception of left when the New York Times, just for instance, has a business section and no labor section. Fascinating that in the minds of the far right, even the business sector is left-wing.

Sunday, August 27, 2017 at 1:32:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger mike said...

David -

The great majority in that list do NOT do responsible journalism or even attempt it. Many are just spin doctors.

However the WSJ does as well as several others listed. Even Fox News occasionally does, usually though only when it suits their ideology.

Sunday, August 27, 2017 at 2:07:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mike,
Save one or two, nothing on that list is considered mainstream by most. Other than Fox, none of that is what a typical 9 to 5 America would pay attention to. I'm in a hotel right now. I could get Fox News in my room if I wanted it, but down in the lobby and the bar they're playing CNN. Some twinkle toes reporter is flipping out over Trump this and Trump that. The patrons are kind of blankly alternating stares at their drinks and at the foaming mouthed twinkle toes exhibiting classic Trump derangement syndrome. There's a USA today that's lying around the lobby with a bunch of anti-Trump slanted stories.

But enough with the anecdotes...Come one. There have been studies done on this topic over the past 12 months and they consistently show a strong anti-trump and ant-conservative bias in the media.

cheers

avedis

Sunday, August 27, 2017 at 6:01:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

The Wall Street Journal certainly has an anti-Trump bias but I wouldn't say it has an anti-conservative bias.

Most of what you call the left-wing press, I suspect, is actually the capitalist business press, which is all right with either the cultural left or the cultural right as long as they don't want to threaten the status quo.

Honestly, find me just two major newspapers and/or news channels in the country that dedicates even half the space and human resources to labor that it does to business, and then we can talk about whether there might be a left-wing bias in the media.

Sunday, August 27, 2017 at 8:03:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger mike said...

avedis -

The WSJ, Washington Times, Washington Examiner, Chicago Tribune, New York Post, Weekly Standard, National Review, Federalist, American Conservative and American Spectator are all mainstream right-wing media, and read nationally. I am sure there is one or two or three locals in your part of the country.

If the WSJ or some of the others listed have had some anti-Trump articles as David says it is NOT because they are lefties. And in any case those stories are ignored so that the mighty wurlitzer can continue the lie that it is the left wing media that is dragging him down.

Tinkletoes reporters? Yes on both sides. You understand you could have asked them to change the channel. I do it frequently - not to ask them to change FOX to CNN - but to change either FOX or CNN to the Golf Channel. Or you could stay out of bars.

Studies? Paid for by whom? Perhaps the RNC or the right wing Heritage Foundation? And who conducted the study - academics from Jerry Falwell's Liberty University?

Sunday, August 27, 2017 at 8:56:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

mike,


You ask, "should [he] have a special dispensation for freedom of mockery ..." No, but that is not what we are speaking of.

I am not a wet rag, and humor (or mockery, as you put it) has always been an honored American tradition. What I see is different ... it is a virulent, visceral hatred towards the President.

Frankly, I find the tenor frightening and dangerous; it threatens most of our finer precepts. Perversely, it is being carried out -- violently, angrily -- by those who used to be champions of a free society. It is being done in the name of some unknown good, which has not been articulated.

I have not seen this perversion before. I am, for the most part, a liberal, and I do not understand what I am witnessing. From whence have these emotions sprung? Why are they being groomed, why are they acceptable to a rational people?



avedis,


Precisely when you speak of the morality police now being the liberals -- it is a complete flip-flop.

My next piece will speak to it.

Monday, August 28, 2017 at 11:44:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger mike said...

Lisa -

You claim to have not seen this virulent, visceral hatred towards a president before.

I have. It was clearly evident for the eight years of President Obama time in the "White" House.

My take on what Avedis calls the left-leaning MSM attacking President Trump is this: He, Trump, has attacked them and has tried to intimidate them with implied violence by his supporters. They are not intimidated and are fighting back thru the power of the press. But I have not seen the hatred that you speak of from any main stream reporters.

Liberal morality police? Ignore them! I have heard of no mass arrests. Maybe you mean AntiFA? They are NOT liberal.

Monday, August 28, 2017 at 12:04:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Liberals say conservatives are just a bunch of deplorables clinging desperately to their guns and religion.

Conservatives say liberals are irrational to the point of mental illness.

Both the last successful conservative presidential candidate and the last liberal one both campaigned on a combination of identity politics, scaling back the empire's wars, and ending exploitative free trade agreements that have devastated the American working class.

Once in office, such presidents consistently deliver on the first of the three and ignore the other two.

Possibly this is because really Americans only care about cultural issues, not economic ones.

Another possibility is that such presidents are members of an elite class who really do care about their own economic issues, which are at odds with those of the people, and correctly guesses that a critical mass of the people will settle for what they imagine to be cultural victories.

Monday, August 28, 2017 at 1:52:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger mike said...

David -

I consider myself liberal. I learned to hunt and shoot as a boy. I own two guns now, a 12 gauge and a 9mm handgun, old but serviceable. But I have no beef for gun owners, there are many in my part of the country, which is a blue state.

Religion? I admit not going to church every Sunday but I do go often and have always felt a deep connection with God. Let all worship in their own way is what I say. No-one should be forced to pray in accordance with some-one elses notions.

Furthermore I have never called anyone deplorable for their politics. Wait, maybe I have used a term analogous to that for NAZIs or Kluxers, but they are more of a hate group. Can you even call them a political entity?

I am not unique. Most of my friends and neighbors feel the same.

Monday, August 28, 2017 at 8:17:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

And? We could all sit around and talk about how we don't live up to our stereotypes if you want. From some of other Avedis's comments I think he might be an atheist. I imagine Jim doesn't speak for a majority of Rangers current or former in his views on this blog.

But I wasn't the one who said conservatives were a basket of deplorables or were desperately clinging to their guns and religion while the world left them behind. That was Clinton and Obama, respectively.

There's a bit of cognitive distortion that creeps in once people get too ensconced in their bubble chambers, whether that's because of old-fashioned media propaganda or newfangled social media. Some political ideas make sense to us. Increasingly, they seem to make sense to everybody else whose opinions we are hearing. What's wrong with those people who don't agree? They must be uneducated, maybe even insane.

One can see this gradual devolution, and the eventual conspiracy theories and witch hunts it leads to, in most communist countries, and in interwar Germany, so it's not like you can't tell where this train is going.

Lest you think my point is simply that both sides are morally equivalent here, it's not. The paranoid mindset that has gradually taken over the right wing is alarming and, at least for the time being, unmatched on the left. But that isn't because the left is superior. For one thing, faced with the threat of Trump, most of them did exactly what they used to laugh at conservatives for: they voted for an overtly pro-business establishment candidate whom they must have known wouldn't represent their interests in any more than a token sense. For another, only the right, to my knowledge, has recently perpetrated such absurd conspiracy theories as the Obama birth conspiracy and the millions of illegal voters stealing the election for Hillary conspiracy. And then you have the endless bleating about how "the media" is "left-wing," a claim so specious that it ranks right up there with the idea that the Earth is flat.

But that's all just reactions to the superficial nattering of the moment. The more immediate observation I have from it is that while all this plays out, the same elite economic interests represented by both Trump and Clinton continue to enjoy the privileges that both candidates denounced during the campaign. The longer-term observation is that their class is playing with fire by spearheading this sort of factional politics; I doubt the nation can survive it in the long term.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017 at 1:15:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

David,
I'm not an atheist in the least bit, but I don't adhere to any organized religion. I have solid reasons for my spiritual beliefs, like experiences that can't be explained by normal rational means. These caused me to look into the best research into the paranormal (psi, out of body experiences, NDEs...that sort of thing). I'm convinced that consciousness is primary and the material is merely a shadow of reality.

I am beginning to accept your theory that the right/left divide is largely a creation of the powers that be and their media hench people.Of course there actually are crazies that do exhibit the stereotypes of the right and left, but they are a minority; albeit a loud minority. These useful idiots are used to further the psychopathic plans of the powers that be.

I am for freedom. When the religious right was forcing "morality" on us, I leaned left. Now that the commies and freaks of the left are pushing their world view on us, on lean right.

As far as white nationalism, etc goes, if there's going to be a culture war and maybe at least a cold civil war, I am going to side with those that don't hate me.Enemey of my enemy and all that. Witness all of the anti-white hate speech that goes as sociological discourse on college campuses. Screw those guys.

But again, in all of this, I just want to be left alone and be free. I don't want thought police busting me. I don't want to be the target of racism. I want America to be a great country where we all have a chance if apply ourselves. I accept that equality of opportunity doesn't = equality of outcome. Is that asking too much?

avedis

Tuesday, August 29, 2017 at 7:00:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

David,
Only 7% of journalists identified as republican.

https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/there-really-was-a-liberal-media-bubble/

How can you keep saying that the notion of a left leaning media is a paranoid fantasy?

avedis

Tuesday, August 29, 2017 at 7:08:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

David,

You have it right in your final graph, and we are far too taken by the "superficial nattering of the moment". You have taken the Harrier view, and gotten up above the fray. That is what we must do to get at the truth and see the gestalt.


avedis,

So correct: we are Yuri Bezmenov's Useful Idiots. So impassioned (we think), so happy with the latest crumb we are tossed.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017 at 9:30:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Avedis

Sorry about the atheist part then. In any event my point stands. You're living proof that the Obama claim that conservatives are just obsessed with their old-fashioned religion is plainly wrong.

Also sorry for how long this is going to be, but here goes.

For quite some time now, the most watched news channel has been Fox. At one point this spring the ratings pegged it as having higher market share than MSNBC and CNN combined. How is that possible in an environment where "the media" are left-leaning?

What of the big newspapers? The New York Times? The Washington Post? The Wall Street Journal? These are the voices of the business establishment. My main point isn't that there aren't a lot of liberal journalists, it's just that what passes for "liberal" isn't actually left-leaning anymore. If you strip away the cultural dimensions, as I've always said should be done, obviously Donald Trump's campaign promises were more "left-wing" than Hillary Clinton's.

Today's liberals don't care about left-wing issues, which is kind of weird. Liberals now care about gay rights, about trans rights, about race, about gender, etc., etc. What's left out of the mix? Class. Liberalism as represented in the media and the Democratic Party is white-collar, pro-free trade and based on identity politics about race, gender, etc. -- all cultural issues. To the point where in the last election campaign, as you'll remember, leftists were expected to vote FOR the candidate promising more globalization, more free trade, and more foreign wars, which should be a contradiction in terms.

At the time and since I've held Trump to be a con man but that doesn't change what Clinton was.

Why this strange alliance between the corporatist elite and the supposedly anti-corporatist left? I don't know for sure, but I can say the liberals and progressives transformed themselves into something that wasn't threatening so they could have a seat at the big table. Bathrooms for trans people? Marriage for gay people? Combat MOS for women? Sure, no problem, said the elites. We like those too! They're good for business! We'll stand for all those things if you agree to tolerate free trade, deregulation, and tax cuts for the wealthy. Okay, said the left, that sounds fair, as long as you make sure everyone in our special interest buckets gets a fair shake.

The working class isn't only white in America, but the white working class got left out of this new movement because they don't fit into any of the identity politics buckets that have come to define modern liberalism. It was only a matter of time before someone would take advantage of that. I'm only sorry it was yet another elite faction, Trump's, that did it.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017 at 11:47:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

David,


There's some excellent clarity in your response, and some things that need clarification:



1) The fact of FOX's viewership numbers does NOT equate to a commentary on the composition of the media at large. As always, there are many ways to read the stat.

People like Camille Paglia say they listen to FOX and read Drudge for another point of view. Because there are so few even vaguely balanced p.o.v.'s available, that means FOX gets an outsized viewing form people who desire some perspective.


2) I believe you are correct re. Mr. Trump's policy views being mostly on the Left-leaning side of things. Compare that to HRC, who was sizing up to be quite the war dog. She left the right (correct) side of things when she joined the nattering fray about her opponent's views on women and other moral issues; she was not one to speak, and the hypocrisy fairly bit.

Americans are hurting, and she should have called everyone back to the table of issues that actually matter to our nation. She failed in this important mission typically associated with the Democratic Party and she lost. She betrayed both her party and her base.


3) I agree about the weirdness of the Dem platform: primarily "identity politics about race, gender, etc. -- all cultural issues." It is obvious that the working man has been left out of their equation, in favor of the more discretionary issues of a more economically secure cohort of their party.

They have lost their former claim to speak for the common man. A transgendered individual going through sexual reassignment surgery does not represent the "common man".

Wednesday, August 30, 2017 at 7:22:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

David,
"Sorry about the atheist part then. In any event my point stands. You're living proof that the Obama claim that conservatives are just obsessed with their old-fashioned religion is plainly wrong."

No need to apologize. No offense taken.

Anyhow, affirmative. The myth of the hyper-religious bigoted/racist right winger nut is just that; a myth created by the media and loser liberals that can't understand why some of us just don't prioritize transgender rights over jobs, or alleged systemic racism over imperial wars. I don't see any racism. I'm on the East coast right now at corporate HQ. I see many females in executive positions and many brown and black faces in various good paying jobs. Lots of workers from East Asian countries like Pakistan and India and, to a lesser degree, China. It's a huge corporate office with thousands of employees. So it's a good sample size.

There is a reason people like me think liberals are at best whiney cry-babies with paranoid delusions and, perhaps, worse, divisive power seekers that hate whites. Our day to day experiences don't jibe with the myths the liberals are selling.

Where are all the lynched black people? I have never seen one or heard anyone talk about doing it. Yes, back in history like a hundred years ago there were some; though not that many (there were also lynched white people). It seems clear to me that if you seek material success and you apply yourself, you can get ahead. Minorities have it even easier because education centers and employers have to reach certain quotas of minorities. Where are all the persecuted gays and trannies? A black person can walk through poor white neighborhoods unmolested. The reverse is not true in many cases. If these people can't get over history now, they never will be able to. That they demand reparations and gin up all kinds of talk (and violence) about white privilege and actual racist anti-white rhetoric is alarming. It creates a backlash.

Remember, I voted for Obama. I ended up despising him because of his increasingly destructive identity politics, but I was willing to give the guy a chance. Many Trump voters had voted for Obama. This is key.

That right there is the problem. We have eyes and ears and thinking minds; all of which are in direct conflict with the liberals' narrative. If the liberals don't get a grip on reality, they will continue to lose seats in congress and they will never win a presidential election again.

avedis

Wednesday, August 30, 2017 at 4:50:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Two points out of that, both coming as a disillusioned leftist.

First, see my point re the liberal/left being white-collar professionals now. This isn't brand new. It was already all the rage when I was in grad school some years ago although the trans thing wasn't on the radar yet. Basically the message is that we don't need to worry about class now, it's solved and done with, we need to worry about things like race and gender and sexuality etc. etc. now.

This never made sense to me. I mean, if you're on the left, class inequality is it. That's all. You can care about other things too, but if you don't think a central problem in society is that the wealthy elite are rigging the political and economic game in their favour and that the state should be working for the people instead of the elite, then you're not a leftist. Because that's the definition of the word. Weird stuff -- but makes more sense if all the people saying it are coming from comfortable middle-class city backgrounds and have no experience at all with actual rural or working class life, they just think leftist means you're protesting one thing or another about the supposed status quo in the name of "equality" or "progress."

Second, what you call the "liberal narrative" is the compromise that now exists, in the age of Trump, between what passes for the modern left and the business class. Again, this is completely oxymoronical. The left shouldn't have common cause with the business elite. It's oxymoronical. They have opposite interests! (This I think is why so many blue-collar factory workers voted for Trump even though their unions told them not to.)

But, enter identity politics. The New York Times and the Democratic business elite don't mind promising to add a couple seats to the table for trans people and feminists and what have you. That's fine, as long as the table's still there and they get to sit at the head of it.

There's a saying that I've heard attributed to Warren Buffett. If you've been at the poker table for an hour and you still don't know who the sucker is... you're it.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017 at 11:25:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

David,
The entire raison d'etre for liberalism/leftist ideology/communism is dead and gone.

People in the US are living better than any people in the history of the planet. A poor person in the US lives better than 85% of people alive globally.

Yes, there are inner city ghettos where black citizens are cracked out and killing each other. Wealthy elites are not causing that. Rather it is self-induced and self-perpetuated loser culture. Ditto, the white Appalachians biting the dust on opioids and meth.

I have never understood why I should care that someone is hyper-wealthy. How does that make less for me? How does that negatively impact my quality of life? It doesn't - AS LONG AS THE CONSTITUTION REMAINS IN FORCE. IMO, socialism = jealousy masquerading as intellectualized fairness.

If the basic law of the land is threatened, perhaps by a wealthy elite, that is not a class struggle thing. It is a struggle between freedom loving citizens and a cabal of usurpers. Period.

The only area where I see any legitimacy whatsoever to the class struggle concept is when wealthy well connected scumbags like Mitt Romney and the Clintons create policies/take advantage of opportunities to outsource our economy to foreign countries. Yet even that is more complicated than simple class struggle. The unions played a big role in driving up the cost of the American worker to the point where the outsourcing became irresistibly attractive.

I do not subscribe to the economic theory of wars. Instead, IMO, wars are caused far more and far more often by ideology. The profiteering is secondary. Vultures do not cause cars to hit animals even though they benefit from the road kill.

So where does that leave liberalism? A vague, useless, meaningless, political perspective desperately in search of relevancy via some "class" of "victims" that needs saving. Hence all of the manufactured outrage/ tempests in teapots. We're doing pretty darn well by human standards and, therefore, most of us don't really want to rock the boat. Being a liberal or progressive is more of a social club with vestigial beliefs and rituals from a by-gone era than a real movement these days. But hey, if we can drum up a panic over hordes of Nazis in the streets - maybe even in the white house - maybe we can energize the members and keep the club going a little longer. That's better than staring into the abyss of our increasing irrelevance.

The most radical political position that resonates with a significant proportion of people is my own. It's called "shut the fuck up and mind your own business". Or, more mildly, "You tend your garden and I'll tend mine and we'll all be just fine". It involves much smaller federal government, localized news, isolationism/non-global intervention, localized policy formation, citizens taking turns at being elected representatives for their communities (no professional pols), localized charity, that sort of thing.

avedis






Thursday, August 31, 2017 at 4:35:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

P.S should have added that wealthy elites are also harming citizens by importing a huge number of third world immigrants, which dilutes the low skill labor force and harms citizens. That is another area where class struggle is somewhat in effect.

Note that Trump accurately and concisely identified the remaining impacts of class struggle; 1. Outsourcing of US jibs. 2. Importation of low skill, wage depressing labor that also inflate welfare rolls 3. Foreign entanglements that cost huge amounts of money and have massive negative impact on the economy (not to mention getting our young people killed and maimed).

Trump should be loved by "liberals" (or at least his platform).

But liberals have their heads up their asses with literally paranoid nonsense about Nazis coming to send trannies to the gas chambers. Liberals want MORE immigration while simultaneously saying that we have too many poor people. Liberals love muslims while simultaneously championing gay and women's rights.

There is no reasonable defense of the liberal position, to the extent that they even have a position (it begins to look more like one big chaotic temper tantrum). In fairness, as I have already said, I think for a lot of older liberals, it's more of an un-examined habit left over from a by-gone era in which there actually were real causes to fight for, like civil rights.

avedis

Thursday, August 31, 2017 at 4:53:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

PPS
War not = economic class struggle.

War = ideological class struggle.

There is an ideological class that favor foreign entanglements. Membership has nothing to do with wealth. Anyone can join as long as they are a totally committed believer. Sometimes a measure of financial success results from membership, though it is not usually a super sonic level of success; just "comfortable".


avedis

Thursday, August 31, 2017 at 5:03:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Avedis,

I'm not one of the Marxists you're talking about. As I say, I'm disillusioned with all that. I work, I pay my taxes, I want my government to take from me only what is absolutely necessary, and I've noticed throughout history that virtually every effort at social engineering has had more unintended consequences than intended ones.

However, I still know the definition of leftism, which strangely seems to have been forgotten by most of the modern left.

What's left of it all -- excuse the pun -- for me is this. Citizenship is the most valuable thing most of the people will ever have. Excessively high taxes add an unnecessary burden to that asset. Free trade agreements devalue that asset by opening the labor market to cheap Third World competition. Imperial wars and nation-building adventures sacrifice the lives of people who were willing to put their lives on the line to defend that citizenship.

Thursday, August 31, 2017 at 11:04:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

David,
Then we agree on a lot. Your calling out citizenship as a top shelf asset is interesting to me. I like the idea. I'd never really examined it that way, but I like it.

Again, note the precision with which Trump hit on the values you hold dear. The liberals trash the valued asset of citizenship. They cheapen it with open borders, third world immigration, etc.

Trump increases the value of the asset. Building "a wall" is like putting a valued asset in a safe. It prevents dilution of the assets value.

How you can be against Trump's policies escapes me completely. The man is promoting everything you believe in. This paradox interests me greatly because, based on what you say, you should love Trump. Unless one is a flaming commie leftist, what Trump promotes is what you want and need and you recognize that consciously.....yet you can't stand the guy. You're not alone in this. There are many others living the same paradox.

Some people just seem to have a visceral negative reaction to Trump himself; so much so that they can't hear what he's saying. It's not rational. "He's a con man","He's a Nazi","He's an idiot","He's crazy", "He's draft dodger" - only the latter is in any way factual and supportable, albeit of questionable relevance in an arena where just about everyone is a draft dodger or chicken hawk.

Whence this rabid hatred of Trump?

avedis

Friday, September 1, 2017 at 6:11:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Avedis

I find it helps make everything concrete, yes. I didn't mention openly tolerating illegal immigration, but it applies to that, too.

Two thoughts on Trump. First, I think maybe you've got the wrong idea. For the most part, I don't hate the economic or foreign policies Trump promised. I just find the whole prospect of Trump as a serious politician unpersuasive. I doubt his sincerity and/or ability to implement them and at the end of the day I believe the loyalty of elite politicians, which Trump now is, will be to other elites. I also think he's far too incompetent and ignorant of politics -- not necessarily of business, where he's obviously quite accomplished -- to put much in.

On the rabid hatred part, I think it comes back to the identity politics bit. This goes back to what I was saying about the modern left. If what you really care about is the other identity politics bit and not about economics, because that was the price of being in with the liberal business elite, which is basically the opposite of where I sit, then you can see where it comes from. If your goal in politics is to advance black interests, advance trans interests, women's interests, etc., etc., well, Trump's not your man and never was. On the contrary, he really is everything you've been conditioned in advance to hate.

But this is where my gripe about the identity politics comes back in. I don't understand why this wasn't the left's position all along. (Except that it obviously was for a bunch of blue-collar union workers, and former union workers in the rust belt, and they deserve credit for that, because their unions obviously wanted them to vote for Clinton.) Instead everyone lost their shirt over a few "offensive" tweets.

For the modern left, the superficial and symbolic has obviously come to matter more than anything else, and for that, I blame identity politics. Hence the hatred of Trump and the tearing down of statues, the book-burning of our day which I hope they will at least eventually regret.

Friday, September 1, 2017 at 10:03:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Avedis

Circling around to see if you responded today, that post reads like a bit of a mess so here's a shorter answer to your question:

1.) I don't hate Trump for his economic policies. I hold him in contempt as the elite politician I believe him to be, regardless of his campaign promises. I believe I know where his loyalties lie at the end of the day, and I also believe I am right in my judgement of his competence, but if I'm wrong on both counts, then that will unquestionably be good for America.

2.) On rabid hatred, it goes back to identity politics versus economics. If people on the left were still thinking of economics the way they should be they would understand this. But identity politics rules the day, and if you think of politics as a way to advance women, advance black people, advance Hispanics, advance trans people, etc., etc., etc., then Trump is the ogre your sociology professor used to scare you with, come to life. He is everything you've been conditioned in advance to hate, and well, witness the predictable outcome.

This is why the liberal elite love identity politics, I assume. It's a nice way to keep the mob riled up and distracted from the fact that most of Trump's economic policies were exactly what supposed leftists were demanding from Democratic politicians like Obama for years.

There. I hope that reads a little better than my early morning vomit.

Saturday, September 2, 2017 at 12:04:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

David,
The left isn't concerned with economics because their strategy is 1. [as you say] all about identity politics and 2. free stuff.

Free stuff....that *is* their economics these days. Like everything that liberals belief, it's magical thinking, but it goes like this; if you're a member of one of the identified victim/disadvantaged groups, you will get lots of freebies. What freebies specifically? You tell us what you want and we'll give it to you. Education? Sure. Free college for all! Healthcare? No problem Free Healthcare for all! Housing? Expand HUD. Free housing! Expand food stamps. Free food! Women can get paid by their employer and not even have to show up to work if they have a baby....for months! "Reparations" for black people just because they're black! Open the borders and let anyone in to enjoy all the free stuff as well!

Where will the money come from? To the extent that the question of who is going to ultimately pay for all the free stuff is even discussed, it seems that patriarchal cis gendered white men that make lots of money being evil capitalists will be turned upside down and shaken until their pockets are empty of their last penny. Viva la revolucion!

But seriously, the left just wants to tax "business" and wealthy people to pay for the freebies. Now this is incredibly stupid. I won't even argue the economics theory. The basic fatal flaw in the "logic" is that wealthy people don't even have enough money - even if you did take their last penny - to pay for free college and free healthcare, let alone all the other stuff beyond one year. The math is easy enough to do on the back of an envelop. How much money do the wealthy have? How much do we spend on healthcare and college? So who is going to pay for all of that after the first year?

Working people know that all the taxes will soon fall on them and then the country will resemble one of those South American countries that are so screwed up. It's loser platform.

avedis

Saturday, September 2, 2017 at 7:54:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

On that part we must agree, but as recently as the 1990s the left took something like the following position:

1. New global economic arrangements will be used to destroy the working and middle classes by opening them to competition with dirt-cheap Third World labor.

2. The same corporations that are driving this will return to pick over the bones of whatever is left. For instance, they'll promote overprescription of dangerously addictive drugs like opioids by the new underclass.

This didn't go away. If anything, the left was proven right. But instead, the reaction now on the left is to shrug their shoulders and defend free trade, because the left has moved on from economic concerns, aside, of course, from a free liberal arts education for all.

Saturday, September 2, 2017 at 9:27:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

to all.
free stuff.now that texas has been hit by a storm,i'll bet cruz is now in favor of free stuff.
just sayin'.
now for davids concept of symbolic. the entire pwot has been symbolic and its become a way of relating to the world. it has placed free flowing anxiety as a daily news feed.
so we choose a symbolic leader even if he is ......you can fill in the blanks.
david - i surely don't speak for any ranger other than myself.
back in rvn 1970 a sf hero called me a commie because i said=this is their country.
i admit that i was way out with that comment. i thought that we were there for democracy. foolish me.
now for walls.
the greeks met the threat on the open battle field. walls didn't save jericho. maginot didn't save france etc.....
democracy is not represented by walls.
back to square one-even a wall is symbolic.
hint=symbolic of ???
jim hruska

Saturday, September 2, 2017 at 10:07:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jim,
Everyone builds walls. Seems like basic human nature to defend against unauthorized encroachments.

When you put your money in the bank, you're essentially putting a wall around it so others can't take it without your permission. We lock our homes and sometimes take further measures to make them impenetrable, like keeping a loaded gun handy, video cams and alarms. We put a wall around our vehicles when we lock them in the parking lot. We all know about "getting in" a woman's pants. The wearing of pants is a wall against unwanted sexual behavior. People erect emotional walls around memories or other "triggers" that would be upsetting.

For every wall, there is someone looking to defeat it. Such is life, IMO. Cops and soldiers will never go totally out of style.

I like David's view of citizenship as a great value - perhaps the greatest - and the need to protect that value by impeding its unauthorized dilution. There is some symbolism here, as you say. But if we don't at least try, then we are all de facto agreeing that citizenship is not valuable or sacred.


I have always been with your perspective on foreign adventures and nation building. A lot of military people are lunkheads when it comes to that topic.

avedis



Saturday, September 2, 2017 at 11:54:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jim,
To answer your question directly, IMO, a wall is symbolic that there is an "us" and there is a "them" and "they" are not to be trusted and are potentially out to get us and/or things we hold dear.

At a still deeper level, I think walls are symbolic of the fact that people have fears they want to keep at bay. Sometimes the fears are real, sometimes they are false and sometimes a little of both.

As long as there are predatory forces and fear in the world there will have to be walls.

avedis


Saturday, September 2, 2017 at 2:11:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

David,
"On that part we must agree, but as recently as the 1990s the left took something like the following position......"

Again, we are seeing eye to eye.

But I'm going to add another piece to the puzzle.

Back in the 90s - the aspects of liberal economic ideology you refer to - the liberals themselves (meaning the people, not the pols) were all euphoric about the notion of globalism bringing in the glorious new era; an era that would be like JL's song "Imagine". There'd be no borders. Everyone would intermingle and talk about their outlooks and, as a result, everyone would religion as false. Everyone would have equal economic opportunity and therefore equality of outcomes. Thus there'd be no war and a "brotherhood of man". It was this kind of magical thinking/social sciences engineering and denial of human nature and true human differences that allowed the elites to sell to the people the destructive policies that they were peddling.

Of course some cultures not with the program would have to be attacked and invaded for their own good. Sometimes you need war to end war. You've got to crack a few eggs to make an omelet. Sometimes the village must be destroyed to save it, etc., etc.

I was in grad school studying economics when the Clintons were talking about how all the workers losing manufacturing and mining jobs would become tech workers. It came up in a seminar class I was taking on what was known then as "the new economy". I was rolling my eyes and fighting the urge to puke. Some starry eyed peer said I was a snob with outdated views on class and caste. Why of course some 45 yr old dude that had been bolting fenders onto trucks in a factory since he was 18 could become a high paid/high skilled tech worker. Of course we could have an economy that consisted of nothing but tech workers.

It was madness and it all linked to "progressive" imaginings of the type found in the song. I realized I was trying to discuss rationally with people that had plunged head long into a new religious cult. IMO, that religion is still behind the progressive movement. The left felt that the Bush Jr. years were an unfortunate blip in an otherwise inevitable trend to glory. They became certain of it when Obama was elected twice. They just knew that with the coronation of Hillary Clinton that the promised land was in sight......

........then Trump happened.

Now their world view is shattered and they are spirally deeper into unmitigated angst and hatred of fellow citizens that "betrayed" the glorious dream. That's how I see it and I'm not changing my tune.

avedis

Saturday, September 2, 2017 at 2:42:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Avedis

Interesting re your experiences. My time in grad school was mid-2000s and although the shine had come off a bit by then, there was still the basic sense being put out that this was all an inevitable progressive thing. Globalization is great, liberalism is the end of history, etc., etc. I'm assuming the 1990s version was pretty much the same except without even the anxiety that was creeping in after 9/11?

Saturday, September 2, 2017 at 4:03:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

David,
I think the 90s version was more enthusiastic. 9/11 definitely put a bit of a chill on the virgin excitement of the 90s new economy/one world crowd. It was apparent that there was a big chunk of the world that wasn't onboard and would resist to the death. I don't care what people publically say about jihadis being a tiny minority of Muslims and being practitioners of a false version of a religion of peace. Most people privately recognized that there was a large scale cultural clash problem.

By the 2000s it was clear that factory workers were not going to become high tech workers.

Also, there was the tech stock decline. The market declared that the stocks were over-valued. The new economy wasn't going to as ubiquitous and rapidly developing as originally envisioned. The "day traders" (a popular hobby or even full time occupation fad) were losing money. Basically, a lot of the promise of the 90s was tested by the early 2000s and found lacking.

avedis

Saturday, September 2, 2017 at 5:35:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Okay, this makes more sense of my own experience, which is what explains my own wonky view of the left.

At the time it was clear to me first in the 1990s that there was a split between what I think of as the liberals (the pro-free trade, pro-globalism bloc with the Clintons) and the real left, which was pro-labor and anti-globalization. This carried over into the next decade, when I was in grad school, by which time the liberal side was in favor of the "nation-building" wars and the anti-globalism left was also anti-war.

Obama was supposed to unify these by, among other things, not being Bush, being black, promising to end foreign wars, and promising to scrap NAFTA and start over on trade. I guess batting two for four isn't bad.

Anyhow, by 2016, it seems that most of them were one big happy family again, united under the banner of globalism, identity politics, and -- naturally -- the Clintons.

Now, whatever you might think of how realistic the supposed "solutions" that the left had for all of these problems might have been, it looks to me like the old left that supposedly cared about the American worker sold their farm in exchange for rainbow-colored magic beans on that deal.

Saturday, September 2, 2017 at 9:00:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

David,
"Obama was supposed to unify these by, among other things, not being Bush, being black, promising to end foreign wars, and promising to scrap NAFTA and start over on trade. I guess batting two for four isn't bad."

I have to agree with that. Like I said, I voted for Obama and I did so pretty much for the reasons you list. I thought having a black POTUS would be the final healing on the racial wounds of country. But Obama betrayed me on that and other issues. I find it funny that I am often called a right wing nut by liberals. I also find it funny that someone calling themselves liberal could vote for Hillary Clinton. As I've been saying, Trump's platform was more liberal than Clinton's record.

I don't even understand what liberals are for these days. I'm not sure they know either. It's more that they are vocal and demonstrative about what they are against and they make it clear that are against white males, the first and second amendment and capitalism. Beyond that, there's no coherent vision. Just a mishmash of oddball causes that most people don't really care about and that liberals browbeat them into publicly accepting, but that people privately are sick and tired of. That's why liberals keep losing elections.

Modern wars are fine with liberals, IMO, b/c the draft was eliminated. They won't have to fight them. In fact, it is usually conservative leaning people from the dreaded "deplorable" clans that volunteer to do the fighting. I know some liberals that smirk at this arrangement.

Jim, being a generation ahead of me, could speak better to the original liberals. I barely knew them (I graduated high school in '82). My impression is that the original liberals did care about the working class. They opposed war generally and, especially, the Vietnam War. They were for the civil rights of all Americans and had participated in the desegregation movement in the late 50s and early 60s. They made some great music too. These guys made sense to me. They had real and worthy causes to fight for.

OTOH, some were draft dodgers. Some were actual communists. Some were just slacker fringe element types. Some were just anti-social agitators who enjoyed undoing the established order for its own sake. Some really did hate the country. My impression anyhow. Bernie Sanders was a hold over from that era of liberalism and fits into the communist, draft dodger, professional agitator sect of liberalism. But I wasn't really there. I just know my impressions from when I was a little kid and from documentaries.

avedis

Sunday, September 3, 2017 at 12:57:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Avedis

You call it a mishmash, they call it intersectionality. No kidding, you can Google it. Then just sit back in your chair and let the waves of postmodern fluff wash over you.

Sunday, September 3, 2017 at 11:14:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

avedis and David,


Your dialog has me, and I hope many others, riveted. You have developed the original post to intricate levels, and have provided valuable historical experience and context.


avedis,

I am with you: the people "had plunged head long into a new religious cult. IMO, that religion is still behind the progressive movement ........then Trump happened."

It is a religious fervor, every bit as frightening and distasteful as anything the Muslim brotherhood would deliver. While it has infected a broad swath of the Left, it seems to have also affected the marginalia of the Right. Parity, y'know?

Tearing down statues? Check. Hanging or beheading a President (virtually or in effigy)? Check. Driving cars into crowds? Check.


Me, too:

"Now their world view is shattered and they are spirally deeper into unmitigated angst and hatred of fellow citizens that 'betrayed' the glorious dream. That's how I see it and I'm not changing my tune."

New post later today ...

Tuesday, September 5, 2017 at 12:34:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lisa,
IMO, a large number of the "protesters" out on the streets, both leftists and right-wing, are imbeciles from group homes paid to do stupid stuff by unseen powers. It wouldn't surprise me at all if the unseen forces includes media types.

Dylan Roof and the moron with the Dodge Challenger are not typical right-wingers. They are clearly mentally defective at the clinical level. Someone put them up to it. Ditto many of leftist rioters.

What concerns me are the huge swaths of "normal" people with Trump derangement syndrome.

I was thinking today about the '68 Democrat convention in Chicago. It was at least as crazy as anything we are seeing today. The Left has always had crazy incendiaries in its ranks. Again, I ponder the alliance of normals with such maniacs.

avedis

Tuesday, September 5, 2017 at 3:03:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

avedis,


Like you, I cannot see this behavior as sane. Like so many of the mass shooters (i.e. Dylan Roof), they must have a heavy imbecile/defective component. Criminals, crazies and crusaders.

And always, always, those willing to enlist and recruit them.

But as noted, that leaves the swathes of "normals" drenched in hatred. My third piece will touch on that. Jeez, like there's nothing better to do with one's precious time than ingather and share hateful tidbits on their President?

If I wasn't watching it spool out in real-time, I would say such behavior could only be the domain of Aspergarian computer nerds living as shut-ins by the computer light.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017 at 7:39:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lisa,
You and I are by no means alone in our perceptions and concerns. The CEO of the company I work for issues a statement today, company-wide. A notice to all employees. This is a Fortune 500 company. One of the oldest - in fact I think the oldest - publicly traded stocks in the nation. He noted what he referred to as unprecedented divisiveness in the media and public forum. He basically stated it was evil afoot (I've never seen or heard anything out of him that suggests he is an outwardly religious person). He implored us all to focus on the images coming from the Houston area, where hands of all colors are, literally, locked together in the spirit of brotherly love to help neighbors - fellow citizens - in distress. That, he said, is the reality of the country; not what the media wants us to believe. He asked that we all seek to understand what others are saying regardless of who they are and what they say. I have never seen a corporate leader feel compelled to do something like this in response to a sense of national trauma, except on 9/12/2001.

I am still waiting for a normal to explain to me the scope and ferocity of their anti-Trump sentiments. I am willing to accept that there is something so painfully obvious and so uniquely unacceptable about the man that the reaction is merited - and that I am too dense and distorted to see.

Still waiting....

avedis

Tuesday, September 5, 2017 at 9:21:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lisa,
Just re-read what the CEO wrote. What he said - and I think it's spot on and similar to what you have been saying - is that it is fine for Americans to disagree on policy. That's normal. We should discuss and understand where the other side is coming from.

For example, people can say DACA is a bad idea and should be ended because it takes resources and opportunity from legal US citizens. It promotes law breaking, devalues citizenship itself, etc. People can say it's good for philanthropic reasons. They can even argue that diversity - legal or not - is a quantifiable good for the country. The metrics and methodology can - and should - be subject to healthy debate. That is all normal, natural and inevitable in a free country.

What isn't good, inevitable or healthy is one side absolutely demonizing the other. It's the instant stripping of all positive attributes and assignment of abject infamy to those who disagree that is twisted.



avedis



Tuesday, September 5, 2017 at 9:49:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Avedis

For better or worse I imagine you'd find that there are enough crackpots that isn't necessary to pay them. In fact you can probably just summon them via Facebook or Twitter or some such nowadays.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 12:08:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

Thanks for sharing the CEO's statement, avedis. For some reason I missed this comment earlier.

It is heartening to know that others are as disappointed as we are at the madness.

Friday, September 22, 2017 at 9:31:00 PM GMT-5  

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